The following and all of the other episodes to come are snapshots of what goes on in my head, now and in the past. There are times none of this will make sense. There will be times when I might get lucky and the blog I post will be well constructed and will flow like a mountain stream to an awaiting lake below. Other times it will seem like the ramblings of a madman and you’ll ask yourself, “What the……?”
You should probably get used to the latter.
EPISODE ONE HUNDRED NINETY SEVEN: THE DONUT HOLE
Head like a hole…
– Trent Reznor
Do you like donuts?
You probably do. Most people enjoy a good donut. They aren’t very good for you. They have a lot of sugar and can make you fat (see Homer Simpson) and they are nothing but empty calories.
But they taste great and if you brush your teeth like you should and don’t eat too many, a donut and a cup of coffee can make you happy for a short amount of time.
A specific moment in my life is bound around donuts.
When I was a kid, my parents would occasionally have yard sales in the summer. A collection of stuff we no longer wanted would get deposited out into the front yard on card tables, cardboard boxes, and blankets. Sometimes, hung from clotheslines and all of it would be displayed for the passing car to stop and picked through and sold. I would even go through my unwanted toys and books and try to make a couple of bucks so I could buy more stuff. I was known to make around $20, a small fortune for a little kid and after the sale was over, I was ready to spend it all.
Now, sometime that morning, my dad would make an escape and go get breakfast for us. Sometimes it was Hardee’s ( a personal favorite then and now) or go to a hometown staple, Donut Country, and grab a sackful of delicious pastries. I would search through the bad for my favorite, a chocolate-covered glazed donut. I’d grab two and sit on the front porch with a glass of milk and devour it all as I watch the yardsale customers go through our cast-offs and hope they would find themselves in the section that I had set up and buy something of mine.
Oh, those donuts. I still dream of them. Once in a while, I go to that same Donut Country and inhale a chocolate-covered glazed donut or two. Even with the threat of heartburn later on.
Now, let me leave that story here, for a moment, and go to this one.
Just the other day (as of this writing), I was feeling pretty low. I felt completely alone. I felt isolated and ignored. There were love and family around me but I felt like I was untouched by it.
I felt like I was in the hole of a…
I know. Maybe this analogy sounds silly but just think about it for a moment. This feeling of love and family was around me but I stood in the middle of it untouched. I’m standing in a hole smack-dab in the middle. You can smell the sweetness and it feels like the sides are within touching (or tasting) distance.
Did I put myself there?
Was I put there?
While I was in this hole, I felt like no one saw me. In this hole, it seems I became invisible. No one saw that I needed to be pulled out of it. No one knew that I needed to be saved and brought to the sweetness.
As I noticed where I was, I finally got a hold of myself and pulled myself out and tasted the donut. I realized I had the power to do it.
Of course, that isn’t always the case. Some days it just seems too hard to do and I feel stuck. Once in a while, I’m noticed and helped to the side. My thrashing is seen. Or my complete stillness, having given up, and a life ring is thrown my way.
But usually not. It’s up to me. Or I just suffer in silence and stay where I’m at until I just find myself better or night comes and I go to sleep, hoping that I’ll find myself safe when tomorrow comes.
Sometimes, that hole in the middle can feel too wide and I just give up. I close my eyes and wait to see what happens.
As I write this, I feel the sides growing wider. Those that are on the sides think I’m there on the donut with them or their backs are turned and they don’t see me.
Or they don’t care to look.
Maybe they are in their own holes.
That is possible.
It’s hard to pull people out of their holes when they are in their own.
So many donut holes, so little time.
I wonder why I’m here in the middle. I believe I put myself here. I don’t think I deserve to be in the sweetness. I feel like I should be in the hole, suffering in silence with no help to come.
Guilt, sadness, loneliness, regret… All these things that I have saved and no let go off gets placed here and I place myself right in the middle, bobbing around, and sinking, sinking, sinking, sinking, sinking…
It has to be up to me. I have to be the one that pulls myself to the edge and gets to the sweetness of the donut that surrounds me. I have to make myself strong. I can’t expect other people to lift my out. It’s up to me and always will be.
But it can be so damn hard. There are days I am too weak.
Life can be sweet.
Just do yourself a favor and eat around the hole.
-Loyd Elmore Jr
April 30th, 2021
I’ve decided to keep a blog about how I’m dealing with depression. I’m going to consider this a form of therapy. It might not help anybody else but it might help me.