Write about: agoraphobia.
Inspired by the feeling I got when I went out of the bakery this afternoon to bring the sign in from the road. Just seemed like I could feel the weight of the sky on me, even though the sun was shining. No idea where that came from, but it lead to what follows so I won't complain.
I walked home from the bakery today and was still home by quarter after three. I think we were basically out of loaves by noon. It was a nice change from the previous two Wednesdays at any rate.
Kat was on the computer when I got back and the boys were up at her parents house, so I wrote mine out by hand. It got long, in other words.
He studies the world from the (relative) safety of his covered porch. Many would consider it a beautiful day. Perhaps even idyllic.
He finds it unsettling in the extreme. And edging toward terrifying with each passing moment.
Well, that is not entirely accurate. His disorder feels that way. The part of him that is still him, buried somewhere far below the surface, finds the day warm and welcoming. Perfect for an afternoon stroll.
He has tried to keep the anxiety separate, often reminding himself that it's not him thinking those thoughts, feeling those fears. It is a struggle - often a mighty one - but he still wins the battle on occasion.
He has decided right here, right now, will be one such occasion.
With a deep, steadying breath, he leaves the porch behind. By the time he reaches the bottom step he is already feeling the weight of the sky pressing down on him. With every step the white, fluffy clouds grow more oppressive. The sun's rays push him downward with greater insistence.
He reaches the sidewalk covered in sweat. He forces himself to turn to the right and begins to follow the path of the street northward.
Overhead the telephone line droops under the weight of a dozen or more crows. They caw at him as he trudges by. He can feel their eyes on him, judging his nonsensical fears.
He makes it to the end of the street and turns right again. His goal is to complete a walk around his block. All the way around, just once. A simple loop. He tells himself he is patrolling the perimeter of his territory.
But there is a group of six men and women walking toward him. Three elderly couples, laughing and talking loudly, enjoying the sun-kissed afternoon.
He watches their approach, his feet rooted to the pavement. His heart races. They are only twenty feet away now. He wants to scream - in anger, in frustration, in fear.
Instead he turns and hurries for home. Defeated, yet again.