Thursday, 13 June 2013

A Mind Like Mine

It's not difficult to get inside a mind like mine.

A mind like mine. I'm not even sure there is such a thing. The more I think about them, the more I think my mental deficiencies could be unique. My mind is not a depressed mind. I've read up on depression and there are all sorts of symptoms involved which I have never experienced. Pains in the chest, falling over with lethargy, extreme insomnia. I have had anxiety and shortness of breath but I've also got one third of a kidney and had high blood pressure. There may not be a mind quite like mine.

Which as I say is not difficult to affect. Something happened today, something so small and matter-of-fact to most people that it barely merited a second thought, much less hundreds of words on my mental state. It was enough to send me on a downward spiral, however, and to ensure that I became quite unbearable for the rest of the day. The nature of it is actually too personal, too close to the bone even for these pages. Taking this refusal to divulge into account I'm not actually entitled to be offended by it. But I was. Mostly because I was just struck by how ignorant and intolerant we are, and yes I include myself in that. It made me feel small and abnormal, which is again not a conviction toward which I need much coaxing. We live in a judgemental society in which you have to conform to certain norms. Sometimes it is taken to extremes like trying to dictate what music you should like, what sport you should watch. Some norms we don't even think about because 99.99% of the population are able to conform to them. Nobody ever thinks about the 0.01% of the population who for whatever reason cannot. That's not intentional, it's just how people are. But try telling that to a mind like mine in the middle of a dull Thursday morning. At that time, a mind like mine thinks it's completely intentional, and feels utterly dehumanised.

The vagueness of this piece is probably working hard against the possibility of it resonating with anyone or making any sense. Suffice to say that I have spent the day being obnoxious towards other people on account of the fact that I don't like myself too much. But you knew that. If you have been here before, at any rate. People who have been here before and want to read about someone who likes himself are not here now. They are on IMDB or Simon Bleeding or whatever it might be. The point here is that I regret my behaviour, but also that I want to put across the clear message that actually I can't help it. I spend a lot of time telling people who would call me 'mentally weak' or whatever that they wouldn't last an hour if they woke up in my situation. This is mostly true, but it does not mean that I myself don't struggle with it aswell from time to time. To put this in some sort of perspective though, a friend of mine is going through something at the moment which to my uneducated mind is a lot more daunting than waking up in the morning and remembering that you can't feel - let alone control - your legs, or several other bodily functions that others take for granted. I try to take inspiration from this person's courage and, well, just bloody well man up. But there are times, like today, when the best I can do in the 'manning up' stakes is to sit there and quietly seethe instead of saying what I actually think. Today was one such time.

You'll be glad to know that my day got progressively better after that. I had my Charlie Bucket moment when I opened my tickets for next week's Robbie Williams gig in Manchester, and discovered that another friend of mine has read these pages. I always welcome the news that someone new has read this nonsense. Reaching people, entertaining them or making them smile or even just think for even a moment or two is the whole point of it. That and a bit of catharsis. Now that I have written this here I won't have to have the 'debate' verbally. I'm pretty hopeful that come tomorrow I won't even have to think about it again, much less discuss it. Which is handy because there won't be time amid the puerile debate about whether we should all be chuffed to bits that it is Friday, or take my view that it is just another day. As rubbish as all the others, or as good as any of the others, depending on events yet to be determined. It's amazing how long we have made this discussion last.

As tedious as it is, a mind like mine will welcome its triviality. I'm a much better man when I'm dealing with the trivial.

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