Friday, June 05, 2009

Revisiting the Past.....

Lately I've been clearing out a lot of old "stuff" in preparation for moving. While going through a drawer, I found this old journal entry, written on the back of a technical support call document. It was written during a work day. I wrote it three months before I was declared permanently disabled. Please understand when you read this that I was psychotically depressed at the time.

Still, it's occasionally a good idea to revisit the past, to see where we've come from and see how far we've come.

Nowadays, I find it hard to imagine I ever felt this way ~ day in and day out. What an incredible waste of precious life energy. If nothing else, it serves to make me very grateful for my life now. I haven't touched a place this dark in 4-5 years now.

Come back Sunday for my "Sacred Life Sunday" response to this entry.



Today has been an exceptionally hard day. It has taken everything I have to stay here ~ to look around me at all these vacant faces. It shouldn't be any surprise. These are people who have had the souls sucked out of them by erosion more than cataclysm. It's as though they've accepted their fate and sleepwalk through their days, accepting the worst of the world ~ drudgery.

It scares me to be around this. I am afraid of becoming one of them. It's said that in Haiti, they feed people oil from a particular breed of fish. I can't recall the name of the fish but it's used in a form of voodoo. The result is a type of brain damage that doesn't take away the ability to function. It just wipes out the soul and the spirit. They're called "zombies".

I actually called A**** B***** and begged him to get me back to B (former workplace). I never realized I could miss anything so much. In the absence of being able to go back to Barclays, I told him to send me to Mars or shoot me. I don't particularly care which. I don't care. I can't do this anymore.

I look around me here and realize I am looking at Hell. Not the ninth rung ~ not a Chinese sweatshop or a Russian gulag. No, this has that uniquely American flavor ~ the hell of being the underclass - the proletariat - those without a voice - those who give away their humanity for a few sheckles and some bread. The living dead.

I refuse to justify this by saying they "chose" it or are consenting to it with any autonomy. Some of them don't know any better and the others have acquiesced. Again, that uniquely American form of torture. No bamboo shoots under the toenails - just a slow descent into the black hole of despair.

Neitzsche ain't got nothin' on this form of soul death. While it is so blatant elsewhere, it is the subtlety - the insideousness - that makes it so effective.

My body is okay. It's battered and bruised but probably good for another twenty years or so. It is my mind that has disabled me. My refusal to forfeit my spirit - my determination to thwart them, my unwillingness to sink into non-personhood. The longer I am exposed to the elements, the more my spirit fights and the more it shatters.

I nearly cried from the futility, my inability to abort this process. It's seemingly beyond my control. My efforts mean nothing. It is meant to be. I need to accept that I can simply no longer do this and save myself.



heartinsanfrancisco said...

I have been there and felt the same.

I'm really glad that you're not in that situation and that frame of mind anymore. Life is too precious to waste in unrewarding, soul-stealing work for someone else's benefit.

As Thoreau said, "Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them." Our life's songs are meant to be sung, so sing yours today and for all the days when you could not.

Anvilcloud said...

I have seen elsewhere that some people find life harder than others, and they can't really help it. It's just the way it is. I think that's you to some extent. But you have found a way of coping, are taking positive steps, and I wish you well in this latest step.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing that entry. I recognize the you in that voice but I'm glad to see the shift to positive now. It's always interesting to re-visit the past isn't it?

Leann said...

Thus are those who decide to work for themselves.

Jen said...

I've been there, albeit for different reasons.

I've also been at a job like that. I ended up quitting.

I'm glad all this is in your past, not your present.

Angela said...

Chani, I so understand how you felt then and am glad that you've been empowering yourself since then to make different choices, explore different lifestyles and find out how to be happy in this crazy world. Here's another quote for you:

Violence does not work
Except for the man
Who pays your salary
Who knows
If you could still weep
You would not take the job.

Alice Walker

Much love!

Olivia said...

Wow, Chani, what a powerful expression. I completely get what you describe. Completely. I took a quick trip there myself recently for a fleeting glimpse. I am so glad you are out of there and where you are. Reading this post and then your one from two days later shows the difference in you, and how your choice was right for you.

In gratitude this Sunday,

Love, O