Thursday, January 05, 2006

Sleep deprivation and the aftermath of taking a shit

Although I am a party girl and have grown up entrenched in gay culture, I’ve never tried crystal meth because of the horror stories associated with the drug, people awake for days and hallucinating, bad come downs, and panic attacks. I kill enough brain cells with alcohol and don’t see the point in melting it down.

If I’ve never done meth, then why the fuck do I feel like I am on the shit?! For the past 3 days, I’ve slept a total of 9 hours and spend my days in half awake limbo. It’s that feeling of extreme exhaustion, when you get so tired that you feel drunk. And we know how my mouth disconnects from my brain when that happens:

“Hey Shannon, you’ve had that cold for some time!” a co-worker said to me.

“Yea, my friends want me to get tested for HIV”

Or a discussion over why I gave up Catholicism and embraced my status as a member of the tribe:

“You know, it goes with being a NYer, a dark sense of humor and renouncing Jesus”

With the panic attacks associated with my bouts of insomnia and my desperate need to pick up my $34 scalp treatment system that I left behind, I fled to my parents’ house on LI.

My life has come full circle, I used to flee here because I couldn’t deal with their nuttiness and now I flee my apt and come here because I can’t deal with my own nuttiness.

I dealt with this in college, my insomnia a by-product of my seasonal depression. For the last 6 years by every January I gain 15 pounds, stop leaving the apartment, wallow in depression, and develop a horrible case of insomnia. By February I get so lonely and horny I buy a new vibrator and troll the internet for dates. A new depth of depression emerges when I am confronted with the reality that everyone internet dating in NYC during the winter months, does it for exactly the same reasons as I am, except missing my sense of humor and ability to still look cute 15 pounds heavier.

By April, however, the cloud lifts, and I inaugurate my new found happiness with a few thousand dollar weekend shopping spree, booking a trip to Europe, lose the 15 pounds within 3 weeks, and once again sleep like a baby because I tucker myself out from my hour long blading sessions along the Hudson.

Only 3 more months of this shit feeling.

However, genius and creativity go hand in hand with madness, and I find that my observations on human behavior become more acute as I look outward to satisfy that emptiness that comes from a sun-devoid depression.

As you know, I’ve been sick lately and as a result I’ve been popping tons of vitamins, afraid to go back to the doctor and tell him the meds didn’t work because my excessive drinking nullified its effectiveness. Water soluble vitamins, such as C and B, taken in high doses can never harm you because your body just pisses out the excess. Combine my ODing on vitamins with drinking gallons of water per day to flush out my system, along with the insane amount of black tea I drink to keep me awake at my desk, and you have an author peeing about once an hour. Sometimes more frequently. I’m sure my co-workers must think something is wrong, and I have to admit, I am actually embarrassed by how often I pee. I just hope they think my frequent bathroom breaks are a result from my politeness, not wanting to blow my nose hard at my desk.

I walk into the bathroom, into a stall and pee for the 5th time by the early afternoon. I realize I am not alone in my bathroom when I hear strains coming from another stall. Farts, wet sounding poop, a flush but no motion of the feet—the sounds encouraging me to pee faster because I do not want to meet the shitter at the sink. I quickly finish, flush, pull up my pants, and am in such a rush to get out as to avoid the awkward, ‘Hey, you just heard me shit up a storm’ look of sheepish embarrassment-false-confident-faith that all bowel movements are created equally natural, yet embarrassing. I am so eager to get the fuck out, that I am actually buttoning my pants walking out of the stall, hoping that by shaving off a few extra moments, I can get out faster and by-pass that moment.

Washing my hands at the sink, my embarrassment got me thinking, about shit-shyness. In college it took me a full semester to feel comfortable shitting when someone else was inside the bathroom. And until third year of school where I stopped using the secret shit-stall for the ‘day after’ drinking sessions. In the working world there are no secret basement bathrooms. Instead forced to listen to someone you spend 50 hours a week with, shitting up a storm, something within a movie or a tasteless tv show would have you rolling on the floor laughing. At work, however, if you ever encounter them face-to-face, able to associate them with the movement, social protocol dictates that you pretend nothing out of the ordinary happened. Even if you also ate the same suspectable food-borne pathogen infested food, suffering from the same diarrhea…you don’t acknowledge, you don’t offer your secret stash of Immodium AD.

She didn’t come out of the bathroom immediately after and I returned to my dark corner of the office, not knowing who the shitter was.


At 5:49 PM, Blogger peterg22 said...

a trip to Europe

Woohoo ! If you come to the UK gimme a shout - I could take you out somewhere (not necessarily for a drink).


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