I’m losing my mind
I’m bleeding to death
“Mother Mother” Tracy Bonham
Don’t be afraid to ask for help?
It was 1pm earlier today. I was back in bed crying. I didn’t sleep last night. I think I got up and ate an apple and orange. Listened to a Zoom meeting. People were okay, talking about anxiety mostly. I was prepared to stay under the blanket the rest of the day. I looked out the window. Fuck, bright sunshine, no clouds, bluest sky. I’m not doing it! Dude you know the deal, every nice day, no matter how you feel. I know but not after yesterday! We don’t have any money, anyway. You got a fiver on the table, enough for a coffee. It’s too hot for coffee, it’s the middle of the afternoon. You gonna stay here crying all day? Fuck you! Okay.
Where’s my blue “breathe” t-shirt? I’m not going if I can’t wear that. It’s my favorite. Why can’t I find it? Hanging in the closet? When was the last time I wore it? Let’s get out of here.
Halfway there I am still crying hard. Usually when I’m not feeling it I can put on a grimace that looks like a smile if you aren’t too close. Not today. October, too hot? Too hot? Too cold? Too windy? Just fucking keep walking. I don’t think I’m gonna make it. Almost there, I can’t. You’ve done it before. All you gotta do is say, large coffee please, thank you and sit down.
There’s a fucking line! The place is always dead. Now there is a line. I wanna leave, why is it taking so long. I’m about to scream. Okay, it’s an old woman, it her first day and the troll is making her more nervous by correcting her every second. I feel bad for her. I look off to the left and start casting judgements. Why she dressed like that? It’s too hot for a sweater. Oh, she’s being interviewed. She’s in her forties, I get the idea she’s a mom. I hope she’s not a single mom. Okay, she’s wearing a ring, nice one too. But still. The indignity, Imagine having to get up, dress real nice, do your hair, makeup, look your best so you can be judged by some unqualified kid to see if you are “qualified” to work at Panera?
My turn. The woman is really nervous, I’m calm, trying not to contribute. She’s doing fine except for the girl harping in her ear. By the end she can barely count the change. She hands it and says, count it, make sure. I said it’s okay, I trust you. Okay, got it, They are doing the interview where I like to sit, I grab some napkins for my eyes and find the only other spot where I can have my back to the wall. I’m not into it buy I text my mom a picture of my coffee so she knows I am out. I can’t help it, I have my hand on my forehead looking at my phone, thinking now I am one of those people. I look up and the woman waiting to be interviewed has no business being here. She should already have a job being paid to be beautiful. I can’t be staring. I’m vaguely aware of a woman speaking Spanish into a phone to my left.
I look down and text my daughter a really good one. I text her things I wish people had said to me when I was her age. I think school is done, she might be driving. My mom,”Panera?”, “Yeah, it was really hard to leave the house today.”, “I’m glad you did” I’m glancing up between messages. I mean WTF? This woman, her hair up, glasses match her face, her shoes. She’s overqualified to even walk into this place. I gotta stop doing this to myself. “Okay, see you Monday at 10am”, She is hired. Don’t worry, I won’t be setting my alarm Monday morning.
“Jesus some woman just tapped me on the shoulder and asked if I was okay!”, My mom, “Really” It was the Hispanic woman, she said, are you sure? Yes, thank you so much! I’m just having a bad day, I will be fine. Are you sure? Yeah, yah, thank you, that was so nice. Now, I’m really crying. Napkin over my eyes.
“Are you okay?”, “Yeah, I’m just emotional.” Nothing… My doctor’s office shows up on caller id! WTF?! I let it go to voicemail and listen. Phew! Just changing an appt. I tell my mom, OMG, I thought you called them! I’m okay. Ever since L—, got her license, she makes me so happy I cry for hours then I get exhausted and a little depressed. (I lied, a little, Monday morning when I opened my eyes, everything was different. I was definitely depressed.
Now what? I shouldn’t be allowed out in public but I look up and this woman should not be allowed out in public. I’m not looking for this shit. She is 30 feet in front of me and her shorts are so short I can clearly see her bug. It’s not like she’s bent over or in some unnatural position. She is just standing there. I know you can wear whatever clothes you want but I can’t walk around with my dick hanging out. Back to my phone.
My daughter put a heart on my text. That means I did a good job! My mom, “Are you home yet?”, “No, I’m on my second cup, I don’t even want coffee, I just want to be out in public.” A woman grabs my hand and puts an apple in it! “Whatever you are going through, I hope you will be okay.” Where did she come from? “Thank you, so much.” Now I’m gonna die! Apple? I’m gonna take it home, eat it and put it on my gratitude list. I guess? I gotta get out of here before the men in the white coats show up.
I go into the bathroom, take a piss, look in the mirror. Holy shit! I”m a fucking mess! How am I gonna get out of here? Okay, there is an exit out in the little hallway. All I have to do is take a right.
Somehow I got home. I gotta write about this or go back to bed and cry. I open YouTube to listen to “Mother Mother” but first thing is a Frank Turner song that premiered a couple hours ago while I was walking to Panera! “Haven’t Been Doing So Well.” WTF! The concert was Sunday night. I knew I wouldn’t go. The tickets never arrived in the mail and i didn’t make an inquiry. I guess I have to listen to this.
“Don’t you ever wake up and suspect
That you were simply never cut out to be
The kind of person they expect
Thе person you intended to bе?
And I keep it all in with my idiot grin
And I’m doing my best but there’s very little left
So cut me some slack if I crawl back into my shell
I haven’t been doing so well
I haven’t been doing so well”