I think about that a lot,
about simultaneous formality and informality of the question,
“How are you?”
And that at least I feel like I can never ever tell the truth.
I don’t know if I’ve ever answered that question honestly
including now.

Vocalizing something as abstract as
how you are feeling in your totality
is impossible.
It’s kind of an impossible question.

So, it’s easiest to say,
“Well I’m not actively dying.
So, I’m fine.”

I’m going into this knowing,
“oh, we’re going to talk about mental health stuff
and I should be transparent and honest.”

I feel like there’s always this impulse
from having practiced it so much
that even in a space where you can be vulnerable
and you know that you can be vulnerable,
those defenses are so strong.

So, now I’m re-evaluating my answer.
I’m fine,
I’m just somewhat anxious.
I also had a coffee today for the first time in months
and I always forget what it does to me.


I’m remembering this thing that
I used to do as a kid
that I’m realizing is really weird.

A set of stairs
Going from the first floor to the second floor
At the top of the stairs if you look straight forward
There’s a window

That window is too high up on the wall
to be accessible to be cleaned or
to have anything up on the window sill.

So it’s not really a place in the house
that’s reachable in reality.

So what I would do is:
I would go to the top of the stairs,
and this was when I was a child
so I was small enough that

I could lie on my side and
imagine that this space
that wasn’t accessible to a human body
would be another secret room
that existed in this house

So the window would still be the window
But the whole room would be horizontal
and slightly shorter
because it’s such a narrow area.

Instead of things being on the floor,
everything in this imaginary space
was on the wall.

It was this room that only I could access
because it only existed in my head really.

I guess the idea of comfort comes from
having something that is only accessible to me.

In the same way the idea of how a bedroom
would be inherently private in some way
and comfortable in that sense.

Initially and conceptually,
it comes from the idea that it’s not real,
it’s a space where there aren’t consequences for anything
which I think is also true of this imaginary on top of the stairs space. 


I don’t know if I’m the only person who does this
but sometimes ill keep things in my YouTube search history,
that I know I’m going to search again,
so I almost want to send you a screen cap of
how terrible my YouTube search history is
But I will play you some videos.

This is one that’s been making me very happy,
“Choccy milk make pain go away”

I just think that that’s kind of fun.
Let’s do one more.

"Have you ever had a dream that you,
um, you had, your, you- you could,
you’ll do, you- you wants, you, 
you could do so, you- you’ll do, you could- you,
you want, you want them to do you so much
you could do anything?”

I love that video but it also
makes me so aware that
That’s exactly what I sound like
90% of the time


It’s parallel to a bedroom,
but not exactly a bedroom
and I like the idea of combining
what’s most appealing of those two things

And I think a lot of that would have to do with
what kind of furniture is there?

Because my first impulse is to
project comfort in an
almost ostentatious kind of way

I think of a victorian bed
with a canopy
or something that adds
a lot of drama to a space that is
plain and not real

But now I’m interrogating,
like why?
why is that my impulse??

You’re thinking,
“Oh okay, let’s make a place of comfort”
And my first impulse is,
“I know! Lets ruin it
and make everybody uncomfortable!”

In some sense it’s reflective of
how I think of my mental illness
and being this thing I have to
make peace with to some extant.

I really like the idea of
embracing things that are bad,
as if they are good.


I like the idea of comfortable darkness.
Things like that
aren’t inherently bad
And that
discomfort isn’t inherently bad.

I always think of this section
From an Audre Lorde writing,

“These places of possibility within ourselves
are dark because they are ancient and hidden;
they have survived and grown strong through that darkness.
Within these deep places,
each one of us holds an incredible reserve of creativity and power,
of unexamined and unrecorded emotion and feeling.
The woman’s place of power within each of us
is neither white nor surface;
It is dark, it is ancient, and it is deep”


As someone who is currently very resistant to
medicalized mental health environments and this insistence of,
“Ok, this is a safe environment,
you can say whatever you want.”

Knowing from past experience that that’s not true.
It’s almost a shame that
that sort of language has become triggering to me
so much so that my brain can’t accept it.

It takes a really long time and a lot of trust for me
to actually believe that that’s true
even in a community environment
as opposed to an environment where there is a balance of power.

Obviously, it’s like
you and I are friends,
I’m not afraid of you!
Like, I trust you
and I trust your judgement
and I feel like I should be able to have that amount of vulnerability,
but it takes so much active work to do that.