This is the first time in two weeks that I haven’t felt like utter crap. At this point, maybe it’s just the Sudafed that gives me the ability to weave two sentences together in any cohesive manner, and I suppose I am grateful for that much at least. The doctor said what doctors always say about this sort of thing, that it’s viral, and you just have to ride it out. Well, my family and I have been riding it out since Christmas, and it’s put me in a bit of a foul mood. As I type, one of the children, “Patient Zero”, is in the other room, moaning, because he doesn’t like food anymore, and it doesn’t really do any good to tell a two year old, “That’s what you get for stealing your sick baby cousin’s pacifier at the Christmas party!”

So you sigh and realize, this happens EVERY year, and, at first you get mad, and blame all your relatives for showing up sick to every family event just because “it’s tradition”, and then you realize, “Hey, I showed up too,” and you feel guilty and stupid and hopeless all at the same time.

And then, once the worst of it has worn off, or you have enough of the kind of pills in you that you have to show ID to purchase, you go a little deeper and push past the whole, feeling sorry for yourself and looking for someone else to blame layer. Then you start to see the pattern, and realize that this does happen every year, and you start to wonder about that. You start to wonder about a lot of things in your life that seem like punishment from the gods. Things that give you an excuse to just throw your hands up and say, “How am I supposed to get anything done under these circumstances?”

You start to think about things like losing weight and staying healthy, and how there is a perfectly rational part of your brain that knows why you should take care of yourself, and how you should do it, and has done it often enough in the past that you know it shouldn’t be that hard, if you just stick with it… but then you see yourself, standing there, eating all the leftover pizza in the fridge, not because you’re hungry, but because it’s there, and, for a moment, it will make you feel a little better. I mean, I have had the experience, many times in my life, where I am telling myself, “Stop doing what you are doing at this moment!” but my hands just keep sticking the cold pizza in my mouth hole, and my jaw keeps chewing.

Then you chalk it up to lack of willpower or poor planning, or any of the other excuses you use to rationalize another black eye in your abusive relationship with your own brain, but, if I’m really being honest with myself, I have to realize that there are at least two people living in this body, and one of them really isn’t all that interested in my grand plans for the future.

One thing I have noticed about myself, is that I am usually pretty good at shrugging off illnesses… if I am in a positive mental state that is. The sickness that is currently kicking my ass in nine different ways should never have advanced beyond the scratchy throat, sniffly nose phase. Most times it doesn’t, but come a holiday, I’m always in a bad mood, and something always gets me.

I always wind up pushing my work aside to do what families do on holidays, all the while resenting it, and imagining how productive I’m going to be when I can finally get back to work. I just get grumpy and martyrous and generally unpleasant to be around, and then I get really sick at the first whiff of contagion, and all my dreamed-of productivity is shot to hell.

Then I really get angry.

I hate this! I hate being weak. I hate being the snivelly, self-absorbed artist who always feels persecuted and misunderstood… It’s a worn-out trope… What is it you kids are calling it these days? A dank meme?

I’m not big on New Year’s Resolutions. They usually seem like a good setup for disappointment, but I think I’ll make an exception in this case, ‘cause I’m really tired of trying to change someone else who is never going to change, and it’s time that I finally admitted that this person lives in the same skull with me.

So… I’m leaving Me.

I’m still a little vague on the details of exactly how I’m going to manage it. Perhaps I’ll have to starve and weaken that half of my brain, by denying it whatever it seems to crave… Well, now I sound like the monster in the relationship. Nevertheless, I like the clever side of me better, and I imagine that you do as well, so I think you’ll agree that, of the two halves of me, this half should be to one to walk out of this room alive.

I’ve lost track of all the times that the other side of me has argued that we should just kill ourselves and be done with it, that it’s all hopeless, and after all, what’s the point?

Well, now that you mention it, Other Half, your existence does seem a little pointless after all, so now the question arises… How do you murder a part of yourself and get away with it?