i still am trying to hold back my tears as i write this down. i thought about on my way home and debated with myself for a good 3 hours and decided that i have to write this, if not for people, for myself.
i visited the ward as a visitor today. it felt weird to be on the other side of the door. it felt weird to be on the other side of the glass, and it felt weird to look into the eyes of someone i once knew.
it hurt that as soon as i walked through the open doors, i hear the screams of a man speaking in a language i did not understand. it hurt to watch him being pinned down by 2 men almost twice his size. it hurt to watch his mental pain being temporarily stopped with physical pain.
it hurt as we started talking. it took almost every ounce of courage inside of me to hold my tears back, because i knew that me crying would dampen his spirits and affect his recovery. and i knew exactly what that feels like.
it hurt to sit back and watch him explain his illness in terms i knew far too well. it hurt to hear him say " stay here, you would understand this more than anybody else. " it hurt that i understood. it hurt that for that brief moment, i didn't want to understand. i didn't want to be in there. my legs were shaking but i listened anyway.
it hurt to hear him explain how the electricity worked and hurt his jaws. it hurt to tell him to be strong, because i knew how much it would take out of him to just try. it hurt that he cracked up jokes in the middle of our conversations, i didn't feel like laughing at all.
it hurt to watch so many people suffering from illnesses they never asked for, it hurt to watch so many of you suffering from the pain you don't deserve. it hurt to just sit there and not be able to do anything about it. it hurt.
but it hurt because it wasn't my place to feel hurt, it was yours. it was your place to scream and shout. it was your place to cry and break down into a million pieces.
but it hurt because you couldn't, because in your head you are fine. in your head, you're at work. in your head, none of this ever happened. in your head, 20 cops didn't restrain you. in your head, this is a perfect world.
but it didn't hurt because i knew deep in my heart that no matter what, the way i feel about you will never change. the strong, courageous, brave, joyful, kind, happy man that i grew up knowing will always have a place in my heart. no amount of ect's and antidepressants will take that away.
*so thank you, for opening my eyes to all the pain in the world. thank you, for making me understand that there is greater suffering in the world. thank you, for teaching me the value of gratefulness. thank you, for educating me, even if it was through your suffering.