"The descent', she decided, 'into madness hadn't really been so much a descent." Had it? After all, descent rather denotes a steady downhill pace progressing to a pre-determined destination. Didn't it? Perhaps she was wrong, but she couldn't see how she might have been.
For her, the trip to insanity had been more an arduous climb, clinging tightly to the chinks of conformity, acceptability ... normalcy, if you will. She'd held each small bit of normal in such a firm grip, in fact, that they'd crumbled in her hands. Small bits had slipped quietly through her fingers at first. Just dust, really.. maybe sand. But as time went on the pieces that fell grew increasingly large as she neared the summit of sanity. They slipped more and more easily from her grasp.
She supposed that she had gotten tired, through the years. Tired of holding on. Tired of fighting the inevitable. Her body protested each step, each reach and each breath.
Meaningless platitudes played over and over in her mind as she struggled to hold on to the side of the cliff of normal.
"You can do it, it's just a little bit longer." "You're strong, we have faith in your ability!" "Let go and let God help you!" "It's all going to be okay!"
Along with the mindless chatter of good intentions, she heard a steady stream of negative reinforcements.
"You're stupid! You'll never amount to anything!" " You're UGLY!" "You'll never make it, you never finish anything you start anyway!"
The light of a warming, caring sun gave way to a dark and slow drizzle of depression. A bitter chill wind of despair stole what small measure of hope she still had retained.
So, no, not really a descent.. more of a tiring climb to the very edge of sanity.. followed by a sudden, short but shattering fall into the chasm of crazy.
She laughed. She laughed hard and long as the surreal faces entered and left her vision. " Not really faces', she thought, 'just sad, kind eyes that hovered over rectangles of pale blue fabric." She laughed while disembodied hands clutched at her. Grasping, tugging, guiding hands.
"It's not so bad here in crazy!', she thought, 'The monsters here actually look like monsters. Back in normal the monsters looked like neighbors, like friends... could be anyone really. You could never tell, back in normal', she thought, 'what things really were.
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