I want to live before I die – Joyline Maenzanise

 

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For a while now, I have been haunted by the superfluity of my existence

Of late, my mind has become weary from all the years of displaying resilience

I keep searching and am struggling to find a way out of what feels like a runnel

It is fading, the belief that there is a glimmer of light at the end of this dark tunnel

At this point, I no longer find inspiration in loved ones or ambitions I had

For so long, love received and goals set have worked to keep me motivated

Sadly, that only got me to this place of feeling emotionally depleted

My days seem to have become mere obstacles that must be overcome

The pain – even as I quit smoking – I still do whatever it takes to numb

I pretend to be jovial, I pretend to be interested, I pretend to be present

But, could it be that through all this, I may not be pretending to be “OK” after all?

Could it be I am trying to give myself a break and move away from this dark pall?

I talk openly about my struggles for I don’t want to bottle my pain so dire

I talk because a part of me wishes someone might help me out of this mire

Probably as an effort to help me feel better, I am told that we are all “not OK”

It could be an effort to deter me from burdening others or expecting any aid

As just another solution I’ve thought of, “go for therapy”, some folks have said

Sadly, access to (queer-friendly) mental healthcare services is a privilege

Not many of us seem to understand this as though it were a cryptic adage

Still, some folks understand my pain and that is all I can appreciate

It has taken some time but, now, I embrace the stomach-churning revelation

I ought to be to self the person I hope will offer emotional support and inspiration

Still, I find it all tiring and when night comes, I wish I would sleep everlastingly

I have had to learn to manage panic attacks which often overwhelm me agonizingly

Oftentimes, I find myself convincing self to get out of bed in the morning

On many instances, before leaving the house, I make sure to give myself a pep- talk

Other times, I wait until the coast is clear before, out of my room, I can walk

Through all the struggling, I find myself wondering, what is the point of it all?

What is the point of being alive? On me existential questions as these take their toll

Death does seem like a pacifying escape from what seems to be meaningless

But, before I eventually die, regardless of cause, how I yearn to just live.

– Joyline Maenzanise

 

Joyline is a contributing writer at On The Line, a South African publication. Some of her published work can be viewed here: Stories by Joyline Maenzanise : Contently

 

Image by Brian Minear Photography

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