My mother didn’t exactly have room for me. She was a hoarder, remember. Since I would not tell her why I needed her to come get me, she almost didn’t come. I insisted that I didn’t care where I lived as long as I had my pets, didn’t care what conditions I was living in, because whatever she had would be better than the situation I was in down south.
She wouldn’t let me live with her, or maybe she couldn’t (the place was dreadfully hoarded), but she had a second trailer. I knew the second trailer was in poor condition and completely trashed/hoarded, but I insisted I could make it work. I could make anything work to get out of that situation.
Arriving at the trailer wasn’t too terribly shocking. I basically knew what I was in for (or so I thought). I was thrilled to be out of the situation down south and I was simply tickled with optimism. I spent the first week there getting up at sunrise and working all day to clean the living room. There were 3 bedrooms in the place. Two were hoarded and falling apart and the third was hoarded with someone’s stuff who was supposed to eventually return to collect it. The third bedroom will be the only one I refer to because the other two were completely unlivable.
There was so much work to be done in the living room, but I was incredibly determined. This is how “bipolars” tend to work: Low depression followed by fantastical joy. I’d gotten away from the drugs, the men, the fake friendships, the new hell I’d found trying to escape the last one, so I was high on all of that. Fantastical joy and optimism only lasts just so long. I had thought this time was different and maybe it wasn’t a “bipolar high.” The living room was so bad that I’d had to scrub animal feces off the floor. Have you ever seen the show “Hoarders”? Just think of the worst houses. But I got it clean! Not just clean- it was nice. I decorated the room, put my art up on the walls, secured a door and patched all the holes. My cats were happy and my “room” looked so nice that I was thrilled to invite people over.
Then came the rain…. literally. It rained for days on end. I discovered that the ceiling in the living room leaked. It didn’t leak just a little bit, it leaked like an open sunroof. The rain poured in and eventually forced me and my pets out. The electrical outlets were smoking and sparking.
With the destructive rain came my new low. Again, this is how bipolars tend to work- up and down, sometimes over small things or nothing at all. I guess it was in part losing my new “sanctuary” and being forced into a hoarded room that I wasn’t even allowed to clean. All I wanted was one single room of the place for myself and my cats. The entire place was hoarded and virtually falling in on itself. In reality, the room I was forced in to was at least the most stable. The ceiling leaked a little and there was stuff and filth everywhere that I wasn’t allowed to touch, but it wasn’t falling down. There wasn’t anything anyone could say to me to cheer me up, though.
Okay, I’m going to quickly summarize the months that followed because I never really wanted all of this to be my story…
I reached out to people for friendship and support, and continued getting abused, betrayed or otherwise let down. This was a pattern in my life. I dated a sweet girl for a little while, but she was only here visiting and she had to go back to Canada (foreign relationships also a theme in my life?). I took to drinking only to avoid using drugs again. I sucked down vodka like it was my life force, day and night. I didn’t sleep, I rarely ate, I lived off of coffee and vodka. More emotional and sexual abuse, more of everyone blaming me for everything wrong in the world, more feeling worthless, more heartbreak and abandonment.
I reached a point where I wanted to die. Truly, undeniably wanted to die.
There was literally only one thing keeping me alive- my cats. I couldn’t abandon them and I knew if I died they would be tossed outside or something. I was in the very worst condition of my life. I couldn’t see any way out at all. I’d gone to doctors and therapists (my mother helped me in that way, at least), but nothing could snap me out of it.
I continually asked for help and no one ever helped me, so I just decided that I wasn’t worth helping.
Oh and one of my cats developed a medical issue that I couldn’t afford to get fixed. Actually, he apparently had the issue all his life and I just hadn’t known, which made me feel even worse. It was hard to tell with him because he’s always been a shy cat. The problem was with his teeth. He had feline stomatitis. His medical problem and my inability to fix it made things immensely worse for me. I do not believe in having an animal euthanized over the cost of a procedure. It’s not right or fair if the animal can be saved.
I spent a long time living minute by minute. I wasn’t really living at all. I was somewhere between death and life.
Then I got a mobile phone with internet access. That’s when I met “Nelson” online.