There are days when I honest-to-god am convinced I’m schizophrenic. My friends are a cast of characters that should not necessarily occur in real life. Some are poorly thought out, one dimensional beings whose appearances are brief and poignant like a recurring part on a sitcom: one moody musician with a persistent lack of self confidence, a couple of smart-aleck indie kids who revel in each others company but shun everyone else, and a persistent goat-like man. There are others I’ve invented who seem to be more constant players; those I see on a regular basis are move developed in their fictitious state. They are defined (unlike the minor characters) by guidelines outside the typical high school stereotype, with quirks and oddities all their own: another struggling art nerd like myself with a taste for drama and a loving nature, a freakishly tall (future) mechanical engineer who works with metal in his spare time, a pint size (endearing) indie snob/ art kid who crafts and watches crappy 80’s movies with me, and one other vegan who loves shoes and “Sex and the City.” However Despite their ingenious design, their differences or character flaws have not once distressed me. I do not fight with friends, which on its own is enough to convince me of my theoretical illness.. Every once in a while I will pose the question of their reality to those around me, but their responses are predictable and unhelpful, seeing as they won’t admit to the fact that they do not exist.
Some days I am haunted by the idea that I perceive everything differently than it is intended. Maybe that smile and wave wasn’t really a friendly gesture, maybe nodding my head means “no”, maybe “hello” is a profanity. I could actually perceive everything as the opposite of what it means, for all I know. I start to second guess myself on those days, so that my supposedly friendly smile wont be misconstrued as an unfriendly gesture by a society in which I’m not quite sure I understand the customs. I wonder on a semi-consistent basis if I am talking to myself in public, when I’m down town with my friends I speculate that maybe the people who give the impression of parting on the sidewalk to make room for my friends are simply walking farther away from me to avoid this visibly unstable person. Sleep deprivation doesn’t help my skewed perceptions of reality. On days when the circles around my eyes reach epic proportions, things seem worse; my fragile psyche succumbs totally to the paranoia of my insecurities and I go through a day without speaking, so my apparent insanity is not discovered. I believe I am probably not all there. I believe in the concept of objective thought and the reality of my subjective unconscious, and I believe that I will never really know what’s going on.
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