Something is very wrong.
Generally, I’m a pretty genial person. I have my moments of anger or sadness or disappointment, but for the most part, I’m a laid back kinda guy. I spend time with my daughter, I play video games, and I watch movies. However, there has been a constant strain on me; not a big one at first, but a small, almost menial one. But, over the past few weeks and months, that strain has grown to be one that’s encompassing and almost overwhelming. Oh, I try to fight back; those things I mentioned earlier in the paragraph help. Sometimes, I can even go a whole day without feeling an overwhelming sense of dread.
Those days are becoming fewer.
For years, I’ve wrestled with what it means to be me. Y’know…who am I, really? In life, we all evolve, we all change, and we all grow. Sometimes, we even end up on the right side of history when it comes to things of social import. Then, we have the dark times; the times where doubt and despair threaten to overthrow everything you’ve worked so hard for. I won’t say that’s never happened to me, but I haven’t had to deal with it as much. Again, because I’ve always been so laid back. But, with the events of the world nowadays, it’s hard to keep that going. It’s so difficult that it almost turns into a façade.
This is not normal.
I took a picture of myself a few weeks ago, and one of my Facebook friends said – and I quote – “Man you look like you’ve just worked 12 hour shift in retail and is tired of listening to customers shit XD”. I didn’t respond, but that’s because I didn’t respond to anyone’s comments on that picture. But, what’s going on behind that picture is my sense of sorrow and dread threatening to become manifest.
I work in a small town in a building where I’m the only full-time black person. I’ve become integral in that building, and in some of the places around it. I’m fairly well-known, but to be honest, it’s kinda hard not for me to be. Even my trying to keep a low profile counts as a profile. I’ve never had to worry about something happening to me while I’m there, but now? Now, that’s a whole different story. I worry constantly, and I do it about everything. Is my daughter gonna be okay? Are my best friends gonna go too far and wind up in the history books for the wrong reasons? Will the next traffic stop I have be my last moment of life on earth?
I went to see Ghostbusters on opening weekend; very good movie. I highly recommend it, unless you’re a misogynist; if you are, then I highly recommend you grow the hell up. I had a good time, and it felt good to get out of the house. I then went to go to Starbucks to grab a coffee and do a bit of writing. That felt good as well; I was out and about, and it was nice to sit in a peaceful environment and get some stuff done. Then, I decided to go to Best Buy to look around, and I almost immediately regretted it. From the moment I stepped in the store, I felt an immediate sense of dread. I thought everyone was out to get me, and I felt like I was on the verge of collapse. Honestly, they probably didn’t care, because I’ve worked in that field before, and I didn’t care. But, that’s not what my mind told me. I hightailed it out of there, went home, and didn’t leave the house again until it was time for work on Monday.
I won’t lie; I probably need to see a therapist, because this – whatever this is – isn’t healthy.
Now, I know some of y’all won’t give a damn about this. That’s fine. I know some of y’all will give too much of a damn about this. That’s fine, too. I honestly don’t know why I even wrote this down. I guess I felt the need to give my pain voice. I don’t know if this will help or hurt or go out into the ether and be ignored, but that’s okay.
I know some people will wanna call me and talk to me about this, and I don’t want you to. Please. If you wanna call me and talk about Ghostbusters or Destiny or Star Trek Beyond or my daughter or the awesomeness that Marvel Studios dropped on us at San Diego Comic-Con, then that’s fine; we can talk about that. I think I’ve talked about my feelings enough for one day.
Be excellent to each other.