The Beast. A Journey into Self Harm

**** TRIGGER WARNING ****

The following post contains content relating to cutting.




Tomorrow will be a new day, and yet, will be the same as today. 

   It lurks in the sub-conscious of my mind, waiting to pounce on the thin shield that guards me from it. Outside, the rain dances across the windows of my soul. It’s ironic that the hell unleashed outside sounds like The Beast inside, scratching to break through. It’s calling for me, sensing my pain and pleading to help me the only way it knows how.
   The laughter of my children brings little relief to the war that rages inside. The fake smile that spread across my face is only an illusion. A disguise, meant only to mask my insides being ripped apart. Occasionally, God will be grateful to allow a glimmer of positivity to peek through the negativity and warm my soul. I reach to capture that positivity, tuck it away, and carry it with me to release when there is no warmth. Today is not one of those days. I isolate my mind, putting forth my will to keep The Beast locked away.  
   The day began on a new battlefront. A new battle ground. Fighting The Beast is mentally exhausting. I stand before my family, my co-workers, and shield them from the conflict that rages inside. But The Beast is relentless. 
   Let me help you, The Beast says, always breaking through what rational thoughts I have. Don’t fight me, for you will never win. It’s who you are.
   Stop it, I say to myself. It’s a lie.
   Medication has tamed The Beast, and yet, it continues to fight for control. Piece by piece the shield is torn as I lose all feelings. I began to become numb. Numb to life. Numb to the outside world. The Beasts sharpened claws penetrate, digging into my soul. Its words becoming clearer.
   You know I can help you if you let me.
   Stop! I silently scream again, but the word means nothing.
   I continue to push back with the last of my strength, but I succumb to its wishes, as I always do. The only way to push aside the torment, the horror, is to take it out on myself. I wait until the house is quiet. Wait for my chance to dance with the Devil. What matters anymore? Love? Caring? A sense of purpose in this hellhole known as life? I don’t search for answers anymore. What’s the point? I only desire to feel the distraction from my turmoil the only way I know how.
   Get your salvation from your emotionally pain.
   The Beast lies, but it has never failed me in my time of need. It’s the only thing in my life I turn to when the walls of despair have me trapped. Everyone says that things will be fine, but to me, they are hollow words, deflected by The Beasts hardened shell.
How many swipes should I do? How deep should I go? These are the questions that are important.
My fake Savior
The opened drawer reveals many tools that will comfort me, but only one is the fake savior. I push away the useless utensils, taking out the cold steel that has more meaning to its existence than cutting food. The reflection the blade reveals a beaten man, worn by years of fighting the Beast.
   I cradle my salvation as I make the walk to the bathroom. My sanctuary. Each step is with caution, careful not to awake anybody. With ease, I close the door and sit on the edge of the bathtub. The coldness touches my wrist. How many swipes? Fast? Slow? How deep?
   Do it. Let the fear of death pass you by.  
   I can’t. It’s the fear of death, and the consequences in the afterlife that keeps me alive. Even though
I can’t imagine hell being worse than life itself.  I pick my target. The first cut glides effortlessly across my wrist. Never deep enough for serious damage. It’s the first cut that sends me down the path of satisfaction. A piece of my inner pain fades.
   With my eyes shut, the blade erratically finds new territory.  Faster the knife makes marks on my flesh, and faster this satisfaction is more comprehensible than the emotional pain. I can feel my sorrow trickle down my arm. I have no knowledge as to how many slices I have taken. Doesn’t matter. The sting of the cuts, combined with the warmth of the blood, settles my mind.    The Beast was right again.  
   The pleasure had run its course. Tears tickle down my cheeks. The Beast returns into the bowels of my conscious, waiting to appear again. I stare in morbid fascination through watered eyes as to what I did. A few moments pass and the pain subsides in my arm, replaced by the turmoil in my head again, though, not as strong as before.
   Why do I listen to The Beast? Because at times it is the only voice of reason. Sometimes I win the fight, resist the temptation to scar my body. I may win the battles, but it’s the war I am losing.
   Tomorrow will be a new day, yet, will be the same as the last.

I wrote this piece one night during and after my personal battle with The Beast. Afterwards, I pondered letting my personal demons out for all to see. For those who know me, you only see what’s on the outside. On the inside, I’m a wreck. I seek no pity. Never have and never will. That was not the intention when I made the decision. My intention was to put forth that it’s not only women and girls who cut, but men and boys as well. It’s not a sign of weakness. Everyone has their own way of dealing with sorrow.
   Releasing one’s inner hurt by taking it out on their body is a concept people cannot comprehend. Depression is a nasty, unrelenting disease, which takes control of you and shackles you against a wall of hopelessness. It’s not a simple as “getting over it”, or, “you have to be stronger.”  I, and all that suffer from depression, wish it were that easy.
    For self-harmers, you’re not alone.   

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