As I touched upon the last week, the panic attacks and anxiety that I have struggled with for all of my life have been getting worse over the last couple of months. I know what started it off and I am still waiting for an explanation from someone complicit in those events. It was told by a close friend of mine who gets the same feelings when she has finished a big project that it could be that making it worse, and that is exactly where I was last week when all my fears and worries kicked into overdrive. The duvet days, the health complaints, the comedy vomitting sessions and all the other nonsense came back with a vengeance.
I’ve been working on a major project until recently and my time has been quite regimented, it’s something that is actually going to make a big difference to some people’s lives and, most importantly, no one will get exploited or patronised anywhere along the way. Now though, I am back to doing the usual stuff again, mainly speculative work, and I’m finding it a little scary. I’ve found that if I don’t worry too much and just follow my ideas, and my augmented heart, then the resources to continue always land in my lap. I can tell myself that rationally but feeling it is another matter.
This morning though, Facebook came up trumps for once. Amidst the shoes, Japanese stuff and total lack of any local dross there was a memory from eight years ago. It was just an old piece of artwork that I had done, nothing spectacular but it took me back to where I was at that point, which was very mentally unwell, stranded in a strange town with no friend except for one frenemy who was systematically draining me of money and generally taking advantage of my good nature. It’s a horrible position to be in and it took me a long while to get out of, and even then I actually missed the person and the exploitative structure of my life at the time. We are odd creatures humans, we even miss and romanticise about the appalling stuff, bizarre! I hate seeing people being exploited, there is so much of it that goes on and it amazing just how many people keep getting away with it on some level or another.
I can still remember the year of sleepless nights, the weird little acts of spite i had to injure. There was a year that I would describe as complete hell. Then, once my life had settled down, after a few constructive years of hard work on myself and building up a full and rewarding life to lead. I had friends, projects to focus on and I had to face all my fears and conquered some and learnt to manage others. It wasn’t easy, it never is, but it was a life and it was my own.
Then came along the state sponsored holocaust that is the employment and support allowance and around three more years of hell on earth. The sham medicals that would have done Joseph mengele proud, early morning queues outside the junkie central doctors surgery (now mercifully burnt down) for a sick note from a shit doctor that I wasn’t allowed to jettison until after the kafkaesque tribunal I had to undergo before the whole procedure started again. And all the while, where were the local great and the good? All those wankers who watched I am Daniel Blake and decided to have a meeting about it. I have no words, just a battery acid lick of disgust in my mouth for every sham socialist and their fickle, self congratulatory bullshit. John and Janey come latelys, the whole stinking lot of them…. And breath. And relax!
The last couple of years have been no picnic either, but whilst the shit has flown like a sewage farm spilling out in a wind turbine I have pushed my life ever forward. Bigger shows, more merchandise, murals, workshops and, most importantly, the learning from my many mistakes along the way. I’m not bragging here, I’m just trying to remind myself that I am not the worthless piece of shit that my mind is doing its best to tell me that I am today as it does on many days of late.
This is where I’m at right now, waking up shaking, reminding myself that everything that has happened has happened for a purpose. I just keep telling myself this will be another kick start to a better place in life, like the lack of someone draining my funds and and getting out of the meatgrinder that is being mentally disabled and being on a government created sham benefit system before them. Is it working? Not really, well it doesn’t feel like it yet at least but I just keep trying. Through all the duvet days and the anxiety and my blood occasionally running cold, I keep telling myself that this is all good for me and that one day I shall look back at my chaos free, toxic people free, positive life and feel thankful that it all happened. Today, though, is not that day. Today is maggots under the skin, wasp larvae in my brain, time crawling, sod the futility of it all, crawl under the duvet and grab a few more snatched hours of oblivion awful. Then I look at all the work I need to do, the photoshop backlog, the tits and teeth schmoozing, the catching things before they turn nasty and some random deity forbid I actual make some art. That when the weight of it starts to crush me, and I spin out again, maybe I should learn how to cry on cue so a get a bit of sympathy from all and sundry.
One day though, one day. This will all be worth it.