Sudden death


There’s no clear place to start telling the story of my whereabouts over the last few months. I know that I did everything “right.” I followed “the rules” and I went through the “proper channels” and I still find myself laying awake at night wondering what the hell just happened to me. I pride myself in my ability to make the impossible possible, and to do the very things that everyone swears can’t be done. This time around, though, I have to admit that I lost.

College is gone. I’m still enrolled at Kent, but I didn’t even make it a month into classes before I had to withdraw due to panic attacks. I still don’t even fully understand why, but I think there’s some sort of block there that I didn’t adequately deal with. Maybe some trauma from my first time around at Kent that I tucked away and ignored for 20 years. Whatever the case is, I quit. Again. I was already on probation, so this looks really, really bad for me. I don’t want this door to lock behind me, but I don’t know how to go back without being sure it’s really the right time. I miss classes, but when I toss the idea of going back this fall to Kyle, he gives me a look that lovingly says “Like hell, you are.”

Theater? How about no. I’m leaving it at that.

Writing? See above.

And the icing on the shit-cake? I lost a dear friend who was very important to me in frustrating, muddy circumstances. I’ve always been in a sort of self-imposed exile from friendship, and this person convinced me that it was safe to open myself and trust (and love) again. I am, to be blunt, devastated, and every time I feel the slice of that knife twisting in my heart, I use it to remind myself “This, Nicole, is why you don’t DO gross things like love and friendship.” I will not make this mistake again.

I’m focusing on myself, but I’m treading on the line of navel-gazing at this point. I’ve filled journal after journal in the last four months, just trying to process everything, and I’m not getting any closer to something resembling an explanation for why every ounce of forward momentum I had just died. I definitely don’t have any closure.

Life goes on, though, and that’s why memento mori is my favorite art. Make yourself aware of the certainty of death so you can better appreciate the fact that you, yourself, are not dead. While so many of my dreams and goals are now rotting corpses, I am not, and it’s time to bury the dead. I may be lost right now, but I will keep searching for the next path to take. My pulse is a guarantee that I’m not done yet.

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