Elsewhere ...


I have been away for a while. I could not tell you where I have been exactly. I know it's not nowhere because it feels very differently from the somewhere of my every day life. I know it's not here because it takes me to another place that is between inside of me and outside in the world. I know it's not there because that would presuppose that I take myself there and yet I know that it takes me. It's not anywhere. It's Elsewhere.

Elsewhere is that place where the natural enthusiastic communicator that I am becomes suddenly and stubbornly silent. Not only is the sound of my own external voice unrequired but the sound of my internal voice deadens as well. It's the place of absent words and silent breaths. That's it - Elsewhere is a breathing place.

I have come to like it, to such a degree that I catch myself defending it if I feel it is under attack. My poor husband has to put up with my silence which, experienced from his perspective must closely resemble sullen sulking - and I am genuinely sorry about that but I know that the more I infringe upon it and the more it will infringe upon me.

It has what management gurus nowadays refer to as Soft Power - i.e. the ability to get what you want by attraction rather than by coercion. Bi-Polar can be violently coercive, and I have experienced the full force of its hard power many times. This is its more tender, gentle side: it whispers insistently rather than yell excruciatingly.

The one down side of being in this Elsewhere place is that I haven't a clue where I am. I don't feel confused exactly but I do feel bemused a lot of the time. I cannot say that I am incapacitated so much as 'clumsified' to the point of dangerous stupidity. I read labels with my eyes but my brain doesn't interpret what I see correctly. Believe me, this can be very dangerous when I am cooking or using electrical/gas appliances..... I have also noticed I don't immediately get jokes that rely on puns - this feels alien to me because words have always been my favourite play-things.

As a result, I feel best when focused on a simple repetitive physical task such as hoovering or knitting. The house is clean and I have been engaged in some furious knitting lately! Any task that requires my concentration is exhausting and I cannot sustain it for very long. I do feel 'diminished', if not outright dim.  It's not the 'doh!' dimness of Bart Simpson - it's more like the dimness of a fading light bulb. I guess that means I must be low on mental energy.....

Having written the above, I now feel very tired so I am off to have a ...... whatever it is, in that place ..... where ever it is.

I wonder whether there are any road signs in Elsewhere?...

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