I woke up with the saddest thought. Ever since Jori and I moved to Dubai, I’ve been locking my bedroom door at night before I sleep. The door to the bedroom does not close shut, and the cat can just push it open, our cat Ty jumps on my bed and frequently disturbs my sleep, so the only solution was to lock the door before I sleep. But this morning, waking from another sad dream, full of pain and despair, I realized ‘what if I die of a heart attack in my sleep?’. Jori wouldn’t be able to come into my room, the only phone in our apartment is my mobile phone and it’s always on my bedside table, I use it as an alarm clock. Therefore, if I died she wouldn’t be able to come in my room, she wouldn’t be able to phone anyone, and then of course there is the question of who she can phone? We don’t know anyone, we’ve met some people, none of whom we are particularly close to.
There is so much pain, fear and sadness in living and I have been here, in this place of foreignness and detachment for so long. I am tired of my nightmares, tired of waking up in tears, breathless and panting. Tired of feeling too afraid to fall asleep and see the gruesome violent dreams. I’m tired of not knowing where to turn, tired, tired, tired beyond words. I had hoped the move to this city, this laborious relocation would bring me refuge, answers, a sense of security but sadly it has only heightened my sorrows.
Still searching for a job, living on dwindling savings, having to care for my daughter, dealing with my disappointment and depression at every job rejection, and the fear of not being able to pay next month’s rent or bills if I don’t find a job soon, and the massive loneliness and isolation that engulfs me every minute of everyday. There is nowhere for me to turn from all my troubles, nowhere to go. My predicament has become my universe, I live inside it, it is possible to leave my flat, buy some food whilst worrying about how much I am spending but I am always in it, I may use the gym at the building where I live but I am still in it. I may take my daughter to school or pick her up again but I am still in it. I am in it when I am cooking, sleeping or cleaning the cat’s litter. I am always sinking, in my wakefulness and in my sleep, I am sinking, I am drowning.
I dream of a warm gentle hand kindly stroking my aching back when I’m finally in bed at night, after a long tiresome day full of endurance, a loving voice telling me all will be well in the end, but there is no gentle hand, there is no loving voice, there is only my abusive mind. My mind the tyrant that ensures I am always sad about my painful past and always worried about my uncertain future.
I can’t afford therapy so I search for some relief in spirituality. Like a Buddhist, I try to let go of attachment and expectation; attachment to the past, attachment to money, attachment to what I expect my life to be, I succeed for a few days then I flounder, but the fall is steep, I fall a million stories into my grief, lightyears into my despair. I try to meditate, to silence my violent mind but it does not work.
I have never endured such a difficult time; financially, emotionally, and mentally. I wish I could face it with more grace, with more patience. I remind myself that I am physically healthy, that I still have my healthy legs, my healthy heart. That my child is healthy and although she endures with me, she is still able to smile and play and be a child and that is a blessing. But my diseased mind is unable to hold on to any solace, it convinces me that my losses are bigger, so much bigger than I can fathom, the sword of blessings I draw in the iron face of my failures and misfortunes is but a flimsy stick.
I wish I was stronger.