Darkness of Self

Toward the end of my relationship with her, I couldn’t quite find myself. No clear boundaries discernable between me and her. While it may seem like a romantic notion, this lack of boundaries, this bleeding into each other, I needed to be more clearly defined. I needed to know where I ended and she began. I needed room to move and think and breathe. But we were entangled. I was tangled. I needed.

And then she was gone. Untangled.

Suddenly, without her tethering me, entrapping me, holding me, I drifted. Slowly at first. Just a bit further from shore than was comfortable. But I could fight my way back. I remembered how to swim. Until I looked up and saw only sky and water. No land. I didn’t know which way home was. I didn’t remember home clearly. I didn’t remember me clearly. I was ill-defined. Amorphous. Drifting away from my own self. My lack of self. Drifting.

Then I began to fight. Fighting the water and the drifting. Fighting the air and the breathing. I felt suffocated. All this struggle caused my sinking. Or maybe I didn’t struggle enough. I can’t remember. I gave in to the sinking, the disappearing. I aided in my own obliteration. Or did I try to stop it? It is murky now.

The murkiness morphed into darkness, the darkness into the blackest night. No stars. No light. Just inky blackness. My soul slumbered a restless and fitful sleep while I kept on destructing, self-destructing. Being destructive. Destroying.

I wakened to the manifestation of all my fears, the deepest ones, the ones that I harbored in the closest confines of my heart. The fear and I entangled. Intertwined in twisted, cruel intimacy–stolen, permitted, fractured. Pieces of me crashed back together. I eyed the fear and the destruction warily. Detachedly. I spotted myself, what was left of myself. It was enough to build on. I picked it up, clutched it closely and left that place. I’ve not been back.

Author: Kendra Lee

I am smitten with Atlanta. I believe Black Lives Matter. I care deeply about housing justice, education, and transportation. I am a huge MARTA fan. I've got the most adorable second grader, an incorrigible Boxer named Delilah, and a pretty amazing husband named Simon. I've been sober for 9+ years. I heart coffee. On any given day I may write about all--or none--of those things.

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