Back in the summer of 2003 I constantly had this horrible, overwhelming feeling of not wanting to exist. Not of wanting to stop living, but of not wanting to ever be anywhere or doing anything. When I found myself in a social situation, or at a show, or anything beyond the confines of my bedroom on Ditmars Boulevard, I couldn’t wait for it to be over. All I could think about was how soon I could leave and return to my 8’x10’ space. And I didn’t want to watch TV or read or eat or, well, exist. I’m not saying this city caused it all, but when I moved away months later, the feeling went away.
What if I were to tell you I haven’t felt that specific feeling since—until the past month? What if I couldn’t even describe how terrifying that is, and how the terror compounds? And if I said it’s only brief flashes, a minute or two here and there, so that I’m sitting in bed on a Saturday morning, wondering if I should leave the house, text a friend, and the feeling defeats me, I will just lie here, and when I wake up again I reach a compromise with myself: I will leave the house, but just to go to the beach alone on this barely-75-degree day? That things have surely been worse, and I work, and I function, and I enjoy things sometimes, but I fear this?
This began as an overdue email reply, but ended up here.