Her mind lives in a quiet room,
A narrow room, and tall,
With pretty lamps to quench the gloom
And mottoes on the wall.
There all the things are waxen neat,
And set in decorous lines,
And there are posies, round and sweet,
And little, straightened vines.
Her mind lives tidily, apart
From cold and noise and pain,
And bolts the door against her heart,
Out wailing in the rain.
– Dorothy Parker
I haven’t seen a friendly human face or heard an actual human voice directed at me, or so much as shaken someone’s hand, since the 8th May.
That is, unless we’re prepared to count the assessing doctor’s visit, or the cashier at the corner shop. I am not prepared to count either of those. I don’t expect to see anyone, either.
I don’t know whether that’s a complaint. It’s a half-complaint. It’s half relief.
I haven’t been up to it, physically or emotionally (the two run parallel). I’m still not – there are only a tiny handful of people whose company wouldn’t actually make my sense of isolation far more acute at the moment, and I honestly cannot bear it being any more acute. Everyone good lives too far away. I can’t travel in this weather. And I feel inconvenient and not-worth-the-effort in any case: I am pickish, touchy, bare of emotional skin yet stuck inside armour too thick for anything to penetrate: I am entirely tiresome and my days cling tiresomely around me.
I am suffering from depression. I don’t mean I feel a bit down, I mean proper “the world would be better off without me” depression. Don’t worry: I’m adept at this: keep busy, engage with your surroundings rather than your chuntering head, allow yourself relaxation time with your head switched off, and for the love of all that’s holy, stay the fuck away from booze. It is a bad one though. It has been rolling towards me for two or three months, and has been fully present and excruciating for a few weeks. That means I’d either be awful company, or I’d have to use a colossal amount of energy to pretend to be other than I am. Since I refuse to be awful company, that leaves me with the “use a colossal amount of energy” option. I don’t have any energy, so I haven’t seen anyone.
So there it is.
I probably don’t seem very unhappy on twitter or whatever. But that’s because if I don’t have normal conversations with normal people about normal things that are not this, that are not about this, that are not in any way related to this, I would implode. So I’m basically trying to maintain normal interactions with people as far as possible.
I don’t want to talk about it (am not capable of it, actually – if you ask I’ll just blow it off – oh ha ha ha, yes that – I do talk a lot of rot!; and change the subject). But this is how it is.
Here. Have two delightful things wrapped up together – the light on my living room floor, and Po demonstrating why Oriental cats are often referred to as “a vocal breed” or “chatty” by people whose talent for understatement ought to be celebrated with a tiny little monument:
 They aren’t always this noisy. Only when they’re awake. And they want a response, a conversation, an acknowledgement, an interaction. Since I’m much the same way myself, but have nobody to meow at, I give them what they want.