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Welcome to The Black Swan Diaries! Here I talk about it all - ballet and books, mental health and music, food allergies and fighting stigma..and everything in between. Go on, join up. 

Cacophony

Cacophony

Imagine all of the songs in your iTunes library. How many are there? Several thousand, if you’re anything like me. Got them? Good. Play them in your head. All of them. Right now. All at the same time. Turn the volume all the way up. Good. Now, imagine all the books in your home library. Several hundred, if you’re anything like me. Got them? Good. Now imagine a different and distinct person reading each and every book at the same time. Out loud. In their own distinct voice. To you. Got that? Good. Now imagine anything anyone has ever said to you - good or bad, mean or kind. Every word, every phrase, every rebuke...all of it. Now. Press play. Like a record.

Hear it all in your head simultaneously.

Imagine your entire life broken up into little vignettes that play all day, every day, in no particular order - with the terrible and embarrassing scenes always, always, always coming first. Always. And this is just the first five minutes after you wake up!

Now you’re walking to the bathroom. Imagine all the times you’ve peed in your life. Wow, you pee a lot. You drink a lot of water though, so that makes sense. You drink a lot of water because you’re a dancer, an athlete. How much water do other people drink? Are there really people who only drink soda? That’s gross, soda is bad for you. The square root of 64 is 8. Maybe they don’t like the taste of water? Water doesn’t really have a taste. Soda is cheap so maybe that’s all some people can afford. That’s silly. Wingardium Leviosa. Water should be the least expensive of them all, right? Soda is made of chemicals OW JESUS CHRIST OW THE WATER IS HOT Wait, did you pee already? Did you wash your hands? Oh, okay, good. You’re in the shower now. That is why you are covered in water. You should get out before you burn yourself. Remember those medical shows where people had burns over 80% of their bodies? Don’t let that happen to you. Although it probably won’t because burns that severe are usually rendered by fire or chemicals. You should get out now but look at the ingredients on the body wash first. This is from Lush so it’s made with good quality ingredients that won’t hurt me. That’s good. Reaganomics contributed to the economic oppression of poor and working class people and people of color and thus intersectionally affected poor and working class people of color. I am glad I spent the extra money to buy this body wash because it’s vegan and it smells amazing. It does not have harmful chemicals and I am pleased by that. How wonderful to have something so lovely that smells nice, it’s even a pretty color too. I am lucky. I have privilege. My hair is long. Hello dog! Thank you for coming to sit by the tub while I’m in the shower. You are so loyal and affectionate. I love you very much. I don’t like that dog looks at me when I’m naked although I’m sure he could not care less. But I only have privilege because of a corrupt system that allows that. I will sweat this fragrance out by degages. I think it is still worth it to feel clean and smell nice until I am sweaty.  I need to reread Love In The Time of Cholera because Marquez’s prose is unmatched, his language lilting and transformative, echoing a distinct time and place without being heavy handed on the hard facts. The water is quite hot. I will get out now. The towel on the floor is wet and the feeling of it makes my skin crawl. It feels bad. Yuck yuck yuck. If I flap my hands it will go away. Okay, it went away. French twist or bun? Blue leotard or pink? Or Black? It is time for Good Morning America. I love Robin Roberts, I think she is such a good role model for young Black girls, especially young LGBT Black girls. She is such a great person with such a dynamic story. What is going on in the world today? Where are my shoes? I need to put clothing on. If I flap my hands and shake my head it will go away. There was an attack in Europe. How sad. I will pray for those people. John 3:16, thank you Jesus for loving us enough to die for us, but everyone doesn’t believe in Jesus and that’s okay, but what about their souls? I feel like I will cry.  The Bible says Jesus is the only way to Heaven but what about other gods and goddesses? I should google that. I will be nice to everyone today. I will try not to stim in public. It feels like holding in a sneeze. I feel so sad for the people in that attack. They must feel very hurt and scared and alone. I have felt that way before. It is awful. Now I want to cry. What if something like that happens to me? What if something like that happens here? Are we prepared? AM I prepared? I should google emergency preparedness methods and implement them all right now or we will all get hurt today. If I shake my head and close my eyes and grunt it will go away. What color leotard? Blue or pink? French twist or bun? I am hungry. Oh no  its 8:10! I should have left ten minutes ago and everything is on fire and {truncated by introduction of Adderall into system}

When you take your meds everything fades to a pastel version of its normal color and the sounds all reduce to something of a dull roar. 

Now imagine that when you go out into the world, every snippet of conversation you hear, every car that speeds by, all the music playing in every store window, all the clothing people have on, every living element of the world outside your own body, imagine it magnified times 10. Volume, size and sound. Twenty four seven. Some days everything is in slow motion, but still just as loud and just as bright. Some days everything is operating at warp speed, just as loud and just as bright. Imagine that people speak straight to you, but you do not hear them. In class, the teacher gives a combination and you heard, saw and repeated it, but don’t remember it at all. Someone says something that is not funny, but everyone around you laughs. Someone calls you mean when you tell them that they have a pimple on their cheek. You cry at night even though you know, objectively, you had a wonderful life.

This is what it’s like having ADHD, Major Depressive Disorder, Panic Disorder and Asperger’s Syndrome. This all and so much more, every second of every day.That’s why you’ll forget to take the bag of trash that’s hanging on the doorknob with you when you leave the house to walk the dog in the morning.  I forgot part of what I was going to say as I was writing this. I am drumming my fingers on the computer, hoping that the thought will return. Ah, it has. I spend every day like this, in constant pursuit of my own mind that is far too fast for my purposes. In constant pursuit of socially appropriate behavior. In constant avoidance of stimming in public. Constantly trying to drown out the noise, the panic, the sadness, the awkwardness in my own head. Every minute of every day. Everything is so terribly bright and terribly loud that you can’t focus. When you need to focus on completing something, you can only do one thing at a time. But there often isn’t enough time to only do one thing at a time, and when you’re overwhelmed, you stim. People stare at you. And you walk along, trying to fold into the concrete around you. 

 

only + always love,

syd

 

COMING SOON // DANCERVIVAL

COMING SOON // DANCERVIVAL

I Choose You, Part III

I Choose You, Part III