Fear addled days fill October hours, yet All-Hallows-Eve is the least frightening time for me.

It is an interesting moment when I am laying on the precipice of terrestrial exitum. The living purgatory. I lay writhing in my own fluids, screaming in agony atop a partially inflated air mattress. My small island of salvation in a disorganized dorm room filled with the feverish deposits of illness.

A crumpled, sweat stained jacket on the kitchen floor. Two pungent trash cans, filled with fermenting stomach fluids, lest we forget the empty water bottles, pill containers, empty tube feed containers, and other assorted items that find their way interspersed within a network of college normalcy.

It is something to lay in the worst agony of my life and yet find a semblance of relative hilarity in the whole concept. My ass hurts from vibrating in feverish shivers, my nose is Rudolph-ish, my mouth tastes like an amalgamation of puke and ginger ale, and in the whole hilarity of the tragedy playing out – my poor boyfriend sits beside my drenched, contorting flesh prison with a fixated stare. Obviously catatonic with confusion as to how someone can say,

“Oh, don’t worry, I will be fine. This will pass.”
“You should go to the hospital, you are screaming.”

This is normal. This is the process of fear. The moment I wake up and feel the rapid palpitations of my overclocked CPU, I know. I know days, even weeks ahead of time. Who would go to the same location that inspired an entire novel about hospital based horrors?

Think about that.
That’s what I thought.
You wouldn’t want to either.

I wait. Always. I try to hold off from going to hell as long as I can. I try doctor’s offices or even MedExpress. It is a fruitless venture. The flesh prison requires more. It needs more. It needs a sacrifice to continue. To continue living; to continue to allow me to continue living. It’s as if my body were a lonesome supermarket ride, requiring quarters every so often to continue. I wouldn’t want it to stop either. I feed the plastic lion quarters. I feed the flesh prison torture.


The concept of utilizing horrors I have experienced as translations into my writing increases the amount of focus on detail that I have when here. It is good – it is bad. It is, though, a story.

Traditional Catharsis isn’t the goal, it never was. It will never be the goal. Catharsis works for some, but for me – I prefer to move others’ emotions rather than my own. The catharsis of my story telling is finding solace in knowing that the visceral reaction that exudes from my readers’ faces as they scan the website or story page. That is the catharsis. Knowing that they are experiencing an eighth of the amount of infantilizing fear that I had in that moment is catharsis.

I am a storyteller. I live through others’ experiences. I live in the creation of emotion.

I have Depersonalization Derealization disorder. I was made into this un-person. Humanity is lost upon me, and in my mirror, liminality is my face; I am no one.

I establish my self-ness through retellings. Do we not all do the same thing, though? Retell our self-ness to the others in our lives repetitiously. Our identities are just pieces of lint collected over time building up like a coat that we put on, shedding occasionally, but don as our primary outing wear around everyone.

With Depersonalization Derealization (DPDR) disorder, this is exactly what I must do. Choose to exist in the photos of my past, or start fresh… I am starting fresh.

You know me as Arwen. I was born this year. I wrote my way to freedom from a life of horror stories. I wrote my way to realization and as each piece goes to print, I gain an ounce of identity as an author of that story.

Writing is my way of coping with the horrors that befall me. It translates into the words that fuel your fears.

Enjoy therapy.

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