“What Have You Been Ignoring?” Fiction. Based on a True Monkey Mind.

“What have you been ignoring that you know when you deal with it, you’ll feel a lot better and be a better person for it?”

by Kandee Lewis

“What Have You Been Ignoring?”

Fiction. Based on a True Monkey Mind.

by Jin

This journal entry is inspired by true events. Some of the characters, names, businesses, incidents, and certain locations and events have been fictionalized for dramatic purposes. Any similarity to the name, character or history of any person is entirely coincidental and unintentional.

Trigger Warning: our program often motivates people to discuss their trauma. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed, please, take a step back to address emotional flashbacks and trauma before continuing to push yourself. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911 or the National Suicide Hotline at (1-800) 273-8255.

What have you been ignoring, Jin? What veil have you chosen to pull over your eyes? You felt, this week, that you wanted to stop thinking. You wanted to get up, go to work, and go home. When you got home you wanted to turn on the TV, sit by the fireplace, or crawl into bed with a glass of crappy wine. You wanted to fall asleep staring at your phone.

The mornings are rushed, hectic, every single one of them. They always start with good intentions—an alarm clock set hours before departure, an alarm clock that is silenced, again and again, sometimes for a span of two hours. And then there you are, pulling yourself out of bed, logging into the system ten minutes late, still undressed and bleary eyed, or staring blankly at your cat as she meows at you, urging you to get up.

You stumble into the kitchen with your computer, one eye on the screen while the other tracks the progress of the coffee that will make you sick to your stomach and your breath come even faster.

On the road, as you recklessly take the same turns, having rushed back and forth from the car and the house too many times, speeding to be on time to work. Every day you say you’ll leave by 12:20, and every day it’s about 12:30. While driving, you contemplate freewheeling off the highway and into the gully. Is that what it is? A gully? Or is it better termed a canyon?

Such useless thoughts parade through your mind during those long forty-five minutes. Sometimes you can cram the whole experience into a half an hour. At least they are not thoughts of your life before, of the time in the place, or the time with him, or the way your mother was last night.

After work, you are torn. You want to go home, but you don’t want to see her. You want to be safe in the room that is full of warm colors, but it is a cold, cold room. You know that you will gravitate to the fireplace and get stuck there, like a wad of used gum—watching her drink glass after glass, anger boiling unheard within you.

Eventually, when you can’t stand it any longer, you crawl under the covers, teeth unbrushed, bra still clasped, or perhaps you are naked because you hate these clothes but it’s too much trouble to find pajamas—and then you’re scrolling through your phone, waiting to fall asleep. The cat is purring beside you.

In the morning you’ll start all over again. What will it take, Jin, to rip you out of your orbit and thrown spiraling into darkness? Is that what we’re afraid of? The unknown? The cold murky depths of the past, the basement you never uncovered, the brick-and-mortar wall you built in your mind?

Is the darkness worth searching to find the light? Or would you rather live as a twilight creature, half-living and half-dead?

There is still work to be done.

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