self portrait day
project 52, week 25
Everyone has at least one irrational fear, and many much more rational ones. My silly one is the fear that one day I'll become one of those stories you read about in the newspaper where their skin has grown into the couch. It's outlandish, I know, but every time I eat too much or exercise too little I think "I'm that much closer to being the 400 pound woman!"
My other fear is much more rational, although people think I'm being melodramatic. I'm afraid that one day I'll go crazy. You see, mental illness runs in my family. And most of the time I can just avoid thinking about it, but sometimes it forces itself to the forefront of my mind, and I realize what I can become.
I've told my husband that if I start slipping he's to drag me to the doctor and get me checked out.
For my part, I keep myself in check. I've seen the downward spiral of depression, seen the days spent in hiding, wanting to die, failing to eat. So my refusal to wear sweatpants, my insistence on makeup at all times? Those are my defenses, my way of making sure I'm still alive, I still care, I'm still in touch with reality. I'm afraid, deathly afraid, that to "let myself go" will pull the pins out, and my life will come screeching, sliding, crashing down around me.
And don't think I'm exaggerating. You've only got to face down a crazy person once, only had to have dishes thrown at you or clean up shaven hair once to know you don't want to be that. Ever. And you'll do whatever it takes not to become it.