Fix Something That’s Broken

If you move to push your hair off your shoulder, catch your delicate necklace chain, and snap apart the links, you can bring it to a jeweler who will handle it with care, and piece what’s broken back together, ready again to lay against your neck.

If you drop a vase and it shatters on the floor, flattening out from one curved and beautiful piece into many little sharps, you can sweep up the majority and discard them. Some will surface later, in the heel of your foot, or on the bottom of your shoe. Slowly, but surely, though, the bits of glass will all be gone one day, and the vase will be replaced.

If at birth, there is a tiny seed germinating in your newly birthed head, the result of bad genetics or an accident of god, and it grows for 23 years into a shadowy tree whose roots dig into your brain slowly, slowly — one day something will rupture .

There is nothing to be done.

You’re never supposed to self-diagnose, especially not through WebMD.

I self-diagnosed — albeit through a typical in-office psychiatrist’s test — and checked WebMD to confirm that my shadow tree was Bipolar II.

I don’t know what else to say about that

There isn’t a way to fix a broken mind, no way to smelt it back together, or dispose of it and find another. You live with the brokenness, inflict it upon others, withdraw into the crevices where no one else can go.

You can consult your therapist, who dedicates an hour a week to untangling the shadow roots so that the puncture wounds aren’t as deep, but in the end, she has less power than the disinterested psychiatrist who will always come to a new solution too fast, and charge you too much.

Like cough drops, they drape a cloth over the symptoms so only the outline remains.

I have taken antidepressants, atypical antipsychotics, benzodiazepines.

I am a child’s chemistry set — imprecise, and poorly cared for. Chipped, scratched, missing parts.

The part that I miss most is what distinguishes reality from craziness, but that’s been gone for a long, long time.

I can’t fix what’s broken. I can use duct tape, WD-40, and patches for the holes.

But what’s broken remains. Will always remain.

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