Today’s Daily Prompt: “Share a story about the furthest you’ve ever traveled from home.”
Well, the Daily Prompt is repeating itself again. Back in July they asked the same question. Then in my response I skimmed across a number of places that felt distant from home – some physically, some spiritually, some mentally.
This time I’d like to give you a piece of semi-biographical prose. Semi-biographical as I can’t really remember a lot about the time. It was April last year and I suffered a serious mental collapse. I ended up a long way from anywhere I could call “home” .
Sound was coming from the TV across the room. Sound. Across the room. He focused on the sound. It was a movie. Slowly he realised he’d switched to the movie quite recently, or it felt like recently, but as he concentrated on the TV enough to see what was happening on the screen it seemed the movie was ending.
I fell asleep again, he thought. Suddenly he went to the conversation earlier. Was that real? Did I talk to Jessica? Was it a dream, a hallucination or real? He was no longer sure he had talked to his daughter.
What was the last thing he was sure of?
Hang on. Sonia, I talked to Sonia. I talked to the ex. What had she said? A conversation replayed itself in his head and part of him rejoiced at the messages of love while the last rational thoughts realised it wasn’t real. It was a desire, a dream, a script inside his head.
Sound. Loud sound. Oh, the TV was on.
What day is it? What time? He counted back and thought about the eight days he had spent on this couch or in front of the couch, huddled on the floor.
I remember sobbing. Am I sobbing now? Yes. I’m crying. I wasn’t crying but then I thought about crying and I was. I’m sobbing.
Sound. The TV is on. Wait. Half way through a movie? I’ve fallen asleep again. What time is it?
Was I awake? Did I talk to Jessica? I was going to ring Jessica. I remember talking to Sonia. No, hang on. That wasn’t real. Didn’t I decide that wasn’t real?
What day is it?
Yes, I talked to Jessica. My phone has me calling Jessica. So that was real. She’s coming over.
Wait. When I talked to her she was here. She’s already been here. Was that today? Was that since I called her phone?
Stop. What did we talk about? Talking about the garbage bins? That’s not real? Oh, hang on. It could be. That was days ago. So the phone was after that.
Why am I crying?
Noise. Loud noise. The TV is on. Seinfeld? I fell asleep again.
What time is it?
Oh god, I’m lost again.
Am I awake?
Is Jessi coming over? Did I decide she was coming or was that the dream? Did I talk to her on the phone?
I talked to Sonia. No, no, that wasn’t real. Was Jessi real? I checked the phone. The phone’s real. I did check the phone, didn’t I? Where’s the phone? I can’t see the phone. I can’t have checked the phone if I can’t see it.
Wait. Wait. There’s the phone. Check the phone again. Yes. A call to Jessi. So that conversation was real. I talked to Jessica. she’s coming over.
I’m lost again.
There was a phone call. Who did I call? I talked to Jessi but this was different. Who was it? Did they call me? No, I called someone. Who did I call?
Yes. Mental Health Crisis team. I talked to somebody. Was that today? Was that real?
Somebody put me on hold? A woman. Talking to a woman and she put me on hold.
I talked to Jessica. That was real. She’s coming over. She put me on hold. No, that wasn’t her. That was somebody else. A woman put me on hold. Who put me on hold? A woman. A woman at Mental Health Crisis.
I don’t want to talk to her again. I want to talk to Jessi. I’m sobbing. Why am I sobbing? I’m sobbing again. Why can’t I stop? I want to talk to Jessi. Jessi’s coming over. She’s on her way. Is that real?
Am I awake? Where am I? On the couch. I’m lost again.
Which way’s home?