I am ill today. Or so I told my clients when I canceled their appointments. I lie in bed and, trying to ignore the pain in my neck, stare out my bedroom window onto the street. The steady whoosh of car turbulence puts me in a trance.

I remember now. Monday morning I knew a break was coming. I knew the seams were coming apart. And then love and concern for another made me forget. I went to sleep with my guard down, forgetting that a storm was coming.

Tuesday morning. Jittery. Anxious. Overwhelmed. Five clients coming my way. Electrician with toxic male energy stealing my only break. Even so, I do not recall the awareness that I was already close to breaking. I soldier on the way I do on most work days. Shut out the world, myself included. Focus. That person. That task. And then the work day ends.

I eat without tasting the food. I flip through different shows on the television—all of them increasing the loneliness through their depictions of lives to which I cannot relate. They seem happy. They have spouses and talk about normal things and say funny things that aren’t actually that funny but that most must consider funny.

Walls closing in. Shaking. Denying it. Tears. Not steady tears. Unhinged. Reach out. Minutes feel like hours. Where are they?! Nobody loves me. Or do I not love anyone? How long will this last? It has been hours. Lie down. No, pace around. It has been weeks. Rage. I have been abandoned in this lonely hell. I tell myself I no longer need anyone. That nobody exists. They all left. Every last one of them. Or did I just leave?

I look out the bedroom window. I remember now. Last night…that was the break. I forgot it was coming. And now. Lost income. So much shame that the loneliness is worse. But not unhinged. Sad. Wondering how much damage I left behind. Like a drunkard waking up hungover wondering how bad he was the night before. The Hulk. Mr Hyde. Guilt. about my insanity. Wondering if it’s okay to spend so much time in bed. Wondering if it’s what I need or if it will leave regret. More regret, that is.

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