I haven’t cut myself for a long time. Realistically speaking, I cannot ever cut myself again. They call this recovery. Apparently, I’m recovered. I just don’t always feel it.
Tonight I looked through my old self harm pictures. Yes, I have pictures. When I was in the thick of it I always took photographs. Firstly because I felt compelled to, it was part of my ritual. Also, because I couldn’t trust myself to judge the severity of my wounds. Those pictures gave me the tiny bit of distance required to see what level of medical intervention I could get away with. Now, they’re a stop gap.
They’re the thing I do when I want to cut so badly it hurts not to. I look at those images of gore & miss it.
I miss the blood. The hot, flowing, staining everything I own blood.
I miss the smell & that crackling sound my skin makes when I slice into scar tissue.
I want the pain. I want the deep, sharp trauma my blade inflicts & the hot throb of infected tissue. I long for the ache of putting a butchered arm into a sleeve.
I know that doesn’t make any sense. I know it’s sick & crazy. It is still true. There’s a reason I yearn for the carnage; it works. Only briefly and, sure, it also fucks up your life, but those moments of respite are everything. Physical pain is nothing compared to the relentless agony that can exist in my head. Most of the time it’s manageable. Most of the time I can make it sleep. Most of the time I’m in control. Control isn’t easy. It is work. Exhausting, consuming labour.
The blade is easier. In the short term it’s beautiful relief. All those horrific feelings pour out with the blood. I can slash through my anguish just as easy I hack through my flesh. That’s why we do it. In case you were wondering. The reason some us do insane things to ourselves is because it’s effective. We hurt ourselves to heal ourselves.
The calm just doesn’t last very long. The sickness comes back. It returns stronger every time. The crazy grows. You need bigger, deeper, scarier cuts to keep it quiet. Then the self harm becomes a crazy of its own. You need it. You find yourself listening to drs who say you’re going to die. And even though you really don’t want to die. It’s hard to care. Now the crazy is trying to destroy you & the cutting is competing to do you in first.
So, I don’t cut anymore. I can’t cut anymore because I cannot control it.
If I want to be in charge,
If I want a chance at living a life I love,
If I want to not hurt everyone who cares about me,
I can’t cut.
Sometimes, though, I desperately want to. The easy way out looks good. The horror movie in my head wants to come to life, but I can’t let it. I don’t cut.
I just look at old pictures
Write all the things I can’t bring myself to say out loud.
I don’t cut anymore & most of the time I’m glad.