Saturday, November 5, 2011

hermit time

    Dear Harriet Walter,

    I think I'll go abandon people and be a hermit in the mountains. I'll tend goats and strum lutes and wear long robes and not hurt. I'll give up materialism and vanity and eat clean things, and sometimes on rare Saturdays I'll wash extra thoroughly in my freezing river and put on a nice dress and a floppy sun-hat and white gloves and write the word hesed in the dust with a gnarly stick before going down to the city to be around busy people and cobbled streets and musicians and old theaters and fancy restaurants with outdoor patios, and I'll stay the whole day there until evening, when the lights strung between posts turn on, and I'll dance a while with somebody I'll never see again, and then at last climb back up my mountain, where my goats will make goat noises at me and will not have missed me.
    I will curl up in bed and breathe in the silence and let myself remember just for a moment how being around people can be a slow and painful death, and then I will fall asleep and the goats will eat the sun-hat which I discarded on a table.

    OKAY SELF SHUT UP, the people here are wonderful people and hermitage is not hygienic and everything is going to be ok

    Surely I'm not actually going to post this drivel.

    Here is a picture of a tiny turtle, for merit.


  1. Keep Calm and Carry On.

  2. Last summer everyone said "you're going to have a great time at college."

    Nobody said "you're going to have a great time at college but there are going to be days when everything is absolutely awful and you're choking to death on shame and confusion and despair and your heart is developing gangrene and barnacles."

    Can I have some of your drugs for Christmas, Daddy?

  3. Did we forget to mention that? Oh dear, well maybe we thought it would be like appendicitis and you'd get out of it or at least not get gangrene and barnacles. I really don't remember being all that articulate about it when it happened to me, I do remember writing lavishly illustrated poems...oh no wait I remember I got crazier and crazier till I was staggering around Newberg in the middle of the night in the rain drunk howling and sobbing and dropping out in the middle of my senior year. But other than that it was a blast. Plus I was a little older, but I guess that doesn't make any difference: if girls mature faster it just means they can explode earlier. I can not believe your mother sometimes, dragging me inside, making me cocoa, and marrying me anyway.
    So yeah if you think you can't hold it together any longer then absolutely get some help. I needed some help when I was at Fox, and to some degree tried to get it, but the support just wasn't there somehow and I clung to this childish expectation that I would be taken care of, when the opposite is true: people are extremely reluctant to intervene.
    The drug I'm on is called Citalopram, it's lovely stuff, dirt cheap, the dose is lowish, 20 mg, the side effects are manageable and diminished as my body got used to it. I wish I'd had access to this stuff back in the day. I can tell you that untreated mental-health issues are a great way to waste 20 years of your life.
    On the other hand, a lot of people go through the kind of thing you're going through in their late teens and early twenties and bounce out of it with no harm done. Of course many of them have sane parents. Choose wisely. I love you and I'm praying for you.