I've mentioned voices before, and I'm just going to take a small moment to acknowledge, that a self-destructive voice in my head, telling me to do things I don't like, is not a good thing. However, it's not quite like multiple personality disorder. It's my voice I hear. I assume that everyone hears their thoughts as a monologue, or sometimes a faux dialogue in their head. I'm also assuming that some moods can change the tone of voice of this particular imaginary voice. Well, I have different sorts of tones of voices I use in my head. Sometimes, when I'm in a particularly bothered state, there are two voices - "little me", the frightened child that sits inside me all the time, and "twisting the knife me", the voice which picks away at things that bothers me, tries to anger me, and generally suggests that I just fuck off. I suspect these "voices" are figuratively representing my conflicted feelings. Other voices I think I bring along, dependent on time include "rational me" - a calm explaining type of myself, "selfish me" - a self-explanatory and entirely conscienceless being, and "the distracter" - probably my stand-up comedian nature - the sort who says "Hey everyone - let's go play on our bikes for a bit". Again, these aren't characters, or individual personalities, they're more like instincts I have in various situations.
The various situations recently have involved lots of arguments between the lost boy inside me and the knife twister. This week may have been the singularly most shit week I've had all year, indeed, probably in the last 5 years... maybe even longer. What bizarrely makes it worse is the weightloss - I can't even rely on my body to be stable. What I really needed was the distracter to say "Hey, let's go play on our bikes".
As a result, having allowed my darker thoughts at lunchtime to restrict me to a very lean intake of food, in anticipation of the meal ahead and also to piss myself off, I set off on my bike from Paddington station with about 8 miles of uphill London cycling ahead of me. If there's something I know about cycling, it's this. You can really take out any stresses, upsets and frustrations on the pedals. It's even good doing it in London because you need to use self-preservation instincts too, which really take your mind off things. The lightweight mp3 player I ordered would have also taken my mind off things, but it still hasn't arrived. Damn - there's a helmet for it to be mounted to an everything!
Anyway, the route started in traffic, progressed through no traffic, but long hills and then had a final slog on the very busy North Circular. This is a journey which takes your energy away. It also feels a bit like a rite of passage.
I arrived, humbled by the experience, at my sisters, to a round of applause from those present, who had been waiting for my arrival before starting the evening meal. I had said I'd be there at 8.30. I had hoped it would be 8 at first, but work had demanded my additional attendance and I couldn't walk out of the meeting I was in.
I was hasted to the shower after those present, a lot of whom last saw me two stones in weight ago, had cooed over my physical changes. At least the weightloss and exhaustion were more of a distraction than my general sense of mood. Indeed, I soon managed to blend in at the dinner table, making the occasional laconic quip and, only once, losing myself to genuine feelings when the subject of dogmatic religious observance came up and quickly sliced open a wound I'd been trying to heal since May/June. Luckily, it was only a minor tear and I got it plastered up pretty quickly. These are metaphors. I'd make shit Asperger's Syndrome sufferer.
At some stage during the evening, having taken in a fair amount of food and noticed that I probably couldn't have eaten much more, despite the fact that I used to be able to eat more, since my stomach felt full... although the darker voice had been chastising me for wanting to even think about eating more, I set back off on my bike and headed home.
It was downhill all the way to the station - well, most of the way. I even had a race with a motorist who told me I was speeding. I felt free of the law. They can't put points on me for cycling too fast.
I got to bed. To sleep, perchance to wake up in a better mood. I'd largely managed to avoid questions relating to how well life was really going. Result!