Saturday, December 03, 2016


I went to the end-of-year fete in spite of the noise and crowds because, well, it was the fucking end-of-year fete.

I medicated as much as I could then slid in to enjoy myself.

It was my fault. I should have known that the fire engine display behind me would of course display its horn. It blared, sudden and loud, in a sonic wave aimed it seemed at the back of my head.

My body entered fight (slash) flight and I yelled brightly "gotta go!" and then headed with speed for the car. I re-entered the school grounds only to be assailed by a massed choir armed with ukuleles, their assault on musical reason adding a fat dollop of panic as I made it out the front only to be re-assailed by a screaming two-year-old whose uncaring and unhurried mother was glacially pushing that child along in a stroller.

I made it to the car but until the child was gone I couldn't unclamp my ears to get to my keys to open it and get to the ear muffs in the glove compartment. 

I babbled with rage about ineffective parenting to cover the screaming before I could risk going for keys, door and muffs. 

Then I spent 20 minutes with the muffs on surfing the web on my phone while I waited for the others. 

I love the end-of-year fete; it's joyous. But to go a place with children, noise and crowds is to expose multiple triggers to a deep pull—though admittedly it was a fire siren that triggered me; I was fine until then.

That's what it is to have this; that normal life is interrupted. But you can't sit in your house with ear muffs on; the world won't let you. You have to risk these things to get as much of life in while you still can.

So that's also what it's also like to have this; to have tasted death so closely it reminds you you're alive.


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