Now I lay me down to sleep
I pray the Lord my soul to keep
If I should die before I wake
I pray the Lord my soul to take
No one knows what tomorrow will bring. In reality, there are no precogs; no one who can see a year from now. We know this, as humans. We know that we can’t know when our lives will end. If we’ll die in sixty years, or if we’ll be hit by a bus tomorrow.
But despite that, we make assumptions that our death is far off. We plan for our futures. For our 30th—40th—50—80th—birthdays. For our weddings and children and grandchildren. For that trip next summer, and the cruise in five years.
We assume we’ll live. That death is far off.
I don’t. Because I can’t. Because I know too much about my body, my infections. My reality and my life.
The percentage of people with Lyme Disease who commit suicide is rather high. Can you blame a single one? A disease that several doctors will say you don’t have that attacks every system of your body…and when the money for the doctors and medications runs out, or the insurance company decides that they’ve paid enough, even if you’re still sick…
Shit out of luck, aren’t you?
But it’s not just Lyme. Always remember that. Most all ticks that carry Lyme carry other diseases—coinfections—of which I have three. One of them could give me a stroke or an aneurysm at any time, with no warning.
Right now, I’m at very high risk for that stroke. Right now, my depression is very bad, my life seems very useless and miserable, to have little value, and I find myself staring at pill bottles from time to time. Staring and thinking. Just thinking, but thinking a lot.
I have so very many, you see, and all it takes is one of them. Maybe some whiskey to follow it down.
And then I know I’ll die before I wake.
But I don’t do anything but sometimes stare and think. Out of guilt, mostly; I can’t do that to my parents. Hell, I can’t do that to my cat: she wouldn’t understand, and with the way she reacts when I’m gone even a week, I’m afraid it would kill her, too.
Also, if Hell does exist—and I have personal doubts about that—then my Hell is….well, I’m already living it.
So what would be the point?
I have such a limited amount of time. My father is 64. He’ll only be working so much longer. I must get better, must, before he retires. And I must finish college before he retires as well.
It gets very hard to breathe, sometimes, and the weight of it all seems like it’s too much. There’s not enough room for me in this infected, broken body. I am a soul; I have a body. Thank you, C. S. Lewis.
And I don’t care much for the body I have. Or, at least, I don’t think of it as being me. But the part that is me suffers from this…thing, this construct of flesh, that hosts me for now.
That is how God made it, and so I accept, and I submit.
I also hate it.
I do not think about getting married, though the part of me that’s Katie, or Kitty, depending on the family member you ask, that part still dreams of a wedding. Of meeting a man who will understand and work with me and be my partner and love me as I love him. She likes to think of graduating college, of publishing her books, of getting a job. Of children, even. Of growing old, and finding joy in wrinkles and grey hair.
But that’s the little girl Katie/Kitty, and she’s very deep inside me.
As for me, I’d like to make it to my 30th birthday. That’s my private wish, beyond the wishes of getting better and graduating uni. You could call it my Special Wish.
I turn 28 in April.
I’m horribly afraid my Special Wish won’t come true.
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