This was thirty-four minutes of my life. I was at work on the sales floor, cleaning like I do every day. Nothing happened, no one said anything to me but I got to a point in the back of the store where I had to stop. Something entered my body. Not just my brain but my entire body. This was not a physical ‘thing’. It was more on the metaphysical side. It was something that was already there and it chose the perfect time to fuck up my night. I stood there for a moment and stared at the glass in front of me without really seeing anything. I felt people walking around me so I had to walk to the office. I couldn’t sit so I paced back and forth and repeated, “This is my body, this isn’t me”. I said that more times than I can remember. At this point, my hands were shaking.
I had to shake them, hard. Like I wanted to break them because I could not calm down. The tears came and at this point, I didn’t know if and when this was going to stop. The room got brighter so I had to continuously open and close my eyes. The room became so fucking bright at one point that I started to feel lightheaded. I squeezed my temples and looked down at the floor. The crying still hadn’t stopped. I was breathing, I think but it wasn’t consistent. I had to keep gasping for air like something was trying to stop it from entering my body. My breathing has been off for weeks. Every time I breathe in deep, it feels like the first breath being taken after being immersed in water for hours. Sometimes I have to stop and make sure I’m breathing because sometimes I forget to. Finally, I felt like I could stop pacing. Fourteen minutes had passed. I was in the room by myself but something was happening. I couldn’t explain the existence of this feeling to myself now any more than I could when I was sixteen.
I had to stand close to the wall but there was weight behind me like the air was denser in that part of the room. Something was pulling me and the force was strong enough that I had to take a few steps back. I stood there and kept repeating to myself “I’m fine”. I wasn’t fine but I needed to tell myself that I was. I’ve felt that pull before but it’s been at least fourteen years since. I hadn’t thought about it but it was still with me, waiting. The crying had lessened but I was still stuck in this room. My mind was not ready to let me leave this room. The floor was rising and at any moment, a black hole was going to appear but that never happened. My mind would’ve sworn though… this rage in my body was going to knock me down. I chose to sit but I had to grab the closest thing to me that I could break because I was ready to put my fist through the wall. I slammed my hands down on the desk and waited for the rage to leave my body but it didn’t go anywhere. I can’t explain how my rage feels but it had taken over. My body was not my own at this moment.
My palms were more pale than usual. I stared at them trying to figure out if I was going to be able to go back to work. I had to, I couldn’t stay back there. Thirty minutes had passed. Two people had walked back by the office while I was in there with no idea about what was going on or that I was even in there. That’s the story of my life. People walk by me with no idea of what is going on but anyone seeing me this way wasn’t going to do me any good. I sat there, in that chair for four more minutes. I had completely left my body or I was still there and imposed by something else. I just sat there… then I got up. I walked back to the sales floor and went back to cleaning.