I WROTE THIS ON JANUARY 28, 2020, ALMOST ONE YEAR AGO. I WAS SO CLOSE TO GIVING UP ON MYSELF…
The day comes to an end. More than twelve hours after leaving in the morning, I return home.
Unhealthy, fast-food garbage is shoved into my gullet, washed down with sodium bicarbonate in an oftentimes unsuccessful effort to smother the gurgling morass percolating in my stomach.
I take the remnants of the junk laden meal and dump it in the trash, where it belongs. Lumbering, I make my way to the sofa. I plop my lard laden ass on the deformed cushion and escape for an hour of television.
During a commercial break, I make the effort to stand up. My legs lift and fall three or four times, then with the aid of my arms I thrust myself upright. Hands move to knees to steady myself. A few deep breaths and then I make my way to the cabinet and grab a medication to help me sleep.
I struggle to bend over the ballooning beachball that is my abdomen and pet my little dog’s head. I look up the staircase, grasp the rail with one hand and pull myself up one step. I pause while the other leg lifts and brings the other foot to rest next to the first. I continue the pattern, one foot down, waiting for the other. The steps vibrate under the weight of each leg and the banister sways as I make the effort to stay in motion.
The last step is reached. My lungs are expanding and contracting. I hold myself on each side of the threshold, for a moment I feel gravity pulling at me. I lean forward and then push myself ahead, crashing into the hall’s wall. I pause a few more moments.
LUB DUB, LUB DUB, LUB DUB
My heart strains to circulate blood. I look down the stairs and wonder if one day, gravity will win, and tumble me back down, leaving a heap upon the bottom landing.
I plod to the bed. A mattress and bed frame, prematurely aged by supporting more weight than it should, moans and creeks. Springs cry out as my body falls upon it.
I flip open my kindle and read for several moments, escaping into the worlds created by fellow writers. The “wonder drug” has calmed my anxiety, and fluttering lids fight my efforts to keep them open. I close my book and drift to sleep.
It is 3:33am, it is always 3:33am. Without the usual effort, I bolt upright. Sweat pours from each pore. This is a worknight, so another dosage of medication is not practical.
My heart pounds against my chest. A chest that is rising and falling much too fast. My brain tries to reason with my mind – sometimes it wins, other times not.
I watch the lighted digits of the clock slowly pass by. I put on a podcast, trying to occupy my thoughts. Around 4am, I change the alarm to 6:30. On the off chance I fall back to sleep, I don’t want to be woken at 5:15. Another gym day that isn’t going to happen.
My last memory of the clock is 4:44, soon the sleep that had eluded me is interrupted by the blare of the alarm. I roll from the bed. My knees strike the floor. Using my arms on the frame, I stand up, and begin another day – more exhausted than when I went to bed.
As someone who had once been fit and healthy, a recurring thought comes to my mind – For all the body positivity folks out there, I must wonder, and the hell with appearance; “Is anyone truly happy going through a life labored by morbid obesity?” I shake the thought from my head and begin a day that will require anywhere from eight to ten cups of coffee to endure.
And so, Hell, the walk along the bleak, endless path to nowhere, begins anew.
As Authors we are artist.
The blank page -- our canvas
The written word -- our paint.
Stories -- reflections of our world.
The world as we see it.
It matters not if others “get” it.
We must be honest to our art.