My brain races from one thought to another, and when I slow down enough to pay attention I realize that only a few of those thoughts are actually focused on the present moment. Most of them are either far away in the past or a step into the future.
It’s been said that people who live in the moment and behave as though it’s their last day on earth are some of the happiest in the world. It sounds wonderful and I suspect that most people would like to live like that. I would. I just haven’t been able to do it. Not because I don’t want to, but because I don’t yet seem capable of doing it.
Having trouble being present is a common response to trauma. I know that. But even with that knowledge I don’t feel good about it. It’s frustrating, embarrassing and shameful. I absolutely hate the feeling of being disconnected, especially from the people that I love.
I am ashamed for the days I am mentally absent and drifting away, even during a simple get-together with family or friends. I am tired of losing details of conversations and struggling to respond in a meaningful way in real time. I don’t feel proud of having to ask people if they are still there because I’ve lost my sense of connection to them for the umpteenth time.
I hate the way my brain operates most days. I hate that it continues to work on the premise that leaving is the only way to stay safe and survive. I know I don’t do it on purpose and once upon a time it was necessary, but it doesn’t bring much comfort these days. I do the best I can with where I am at any given moment, but it doesn’t ever feel like enough.