Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Scared of My Own Shadow

I have mentioned in the past that I suffer from paranoia issues. Well, perhaps suffer isn't the right word, though at times they are a bit trying. I guess the better way of saying it is that I have paranoia issues. In fact, I seem to be terrified of just about anything on this earth.

Don't believe me? Here's just a quick list of things that frighten me:

The dark, bright light, closed in spaces, wide open spaces, windows (open AND closed), the sound of toilets flushing (shiver), dolls, stairways, corners, loud noises, silence

Seriously, that list is nowhere near complete and everything on it bothers me to some degree. This is an issue that I've more or less resigned myself to. No matter how much I try to ignore my irrational fears, they are always there to torment me.

They've been worse this week than normal and the reason is simple; my roommate is out of town. This means that every night upon returning home there is nobody here to counter the irrational thoughts. There is nobody around who will ignore all of the sounds I swear that I hear. Each minute that's spent alone is another minute that my mind has the opportunity to build on its fear.

I got home from work today and per my daily ritual made directly for the shower. But since I'm here alone I couldn't close the shower curtain all the way. (Of course, this means that the floor got soaked.) The entire time I was in the shower, I swore I could hear thumping and bumping from other rooms in the house, to the point where the water was turned off and on about twenty times, just to check.

Once one fear worms its way into my brain, all the others swarm me as quickly as they can. Before long I'm anticipating decaying corpses calling out for me, just waiting for the door to fling open so that some unholy apparition can claim me.

Once I am able to finish my shower (made all the more difficult by my absolute inability to put my head fully in the water) I have to contend with attempting to dry. No way in hell that towel is covering my face. I can't afford one second of complacency. Like I said, there are monsters afoot.

Of course, now the rest of my evening will be spent locked in my bedroom, too terrified to open the door unless absolutely necessary. If I had a religious bend I'd be sitting here right now with a bible in my lap, a crucifix clutched rigidly in my hand, pointed directly at the door.

Now that the fears have seeped into my brain, I won't even be able to watch a Simpsons Halloween episode, as it will creep me out to no end. Now that I have lost control of my terror, I will have to run from the bathroom when I flush the toilet, racing breakneck back to my room to slam the door, heart pounding, tears almost welling in my eyes.

Yes, I really am that pathetically afraid of my own shadow.

I am a grown man who still feels the need to check the closet for monsters, albeit never unarmed. I am a man who doesn't like going into the kitchen at night because I have a big glass door that leads outside. I'm someone who still has to check the backseat and undercarriage of his car when getting in alone at night.

Like any kind of mental illnesses, there are good days and bad days. Generally I make it through most days with a feeling of overall unease. But I manage to function okay simply because those nagging fears are always there.

It's only when I'm alone and my mind is allowed free reign that I become a true basket case. I have a creative and fast moving brain that loves to try and get my goat, and it succeeds more often than not, particularly when it's just me and it together.


Lara said...

I forgot all about Bobby being out of town. This would be the perfect opportunity to come over (late at night, of course) to try out my new Michael Myers costume on you. Too bad your bedroom is on the second floor or I'd be scratching at your window. I wish I had a spare key. (Could I please get one? You know...just in case you're ever locked out?). I'd bring over my Bartles & Jaymes cardboard cut outs and move them all over your place. First, I'd start with the shower. But, don't you have a clear shower curtain for that very reason? Then I'd put them in the closet in your room. Then they'd be slightly peeking out from behind the sliding glass door in the kitchen. I imagine they'd be beheaded after their first appearance, though. That reminds me...I DO have a spare key to your car. Bwa, ha, ha!

E said...

You know, funny you mention that....

The Myers thing is part of the reason I don't like going in the kitchen at night. I'm convinced I will see someone either on the deck or in the woods.

Go ahead and hit the deck, it's LOADED with poisonous spiders.

Mwa ha ha.