When I Wake Up Saying ‘No’ From A Nightmare I Am Not Crazy

Flickr, George Armstrong
Flickr, George Armstrong

Busch Light cans make me uneasy. And by uneasy I mean I feel the swell of naseua pool up in my stomach, I feel the rush of my heart, I feel like I cannot breathe anymore, I feel trapped without words.

If you say a word so many times, it starts to sound like gibberish. Like it never existed in the first place. So I say his name. So I say attack. So I say no because apparently when you say a word enough it loses its meaning and that must be why it happened. “No” must not have meant anything to him after it was repeated.

Unfinished floors give me flashbacks, stairwells in dark hallways give me flashbacks, neck ties give me flashbacks, I cannot leave the house without seeing something that reminds me that I didn’t ask for this.

I am not crazy.

The words have been silenced on my lips because my witnesses sold me for 20 dollars. Because all I am worth to these friends I kept so dear is 20 dollars. Because Busch Light does not taste good on an unwanted tongue. My words are silenced on my tongue as I drink a six pack by myself because if I can dull the pain, then I will.

I am not crazy.

I cannot be touched when I do not expect it or my body will go into fight or flight mode and I am no longer running from these ghosts. My ghosts will get punched in the face or elbowed in the groin, I taught myself to say no, I taught myself to fight.

When I wake up saying no from a nightmare, I am not crazy.

I cannot take a new lover because I’m afraid my scars will show, but the scars are invisible to everyone but me and I am not crazy because I know they are there. I can feel them burning me alive, I can still see my ghosts.

We have soldiers coming back from war, cars backfiring that cause flashbacks, they hide and cower. But when your flashbacks come from a tall stranger on the street or the way someone says your name or beer cans then how do you hide?

I am not crazy.

I have broken and bent over this, taking on a slow internal suicide that I know will either truthfully kill me or wind a knife so deep in my gut that I have no choice but to grow scar tissue. Anyone with a piercing or scar knows that scar tissue is harder to break through.

I know about hiding from your ghosts.

I know about running from your realities.

I know about dying inside.

But I am not crazy. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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