"Great, thanks"

Sunday, post-lumbar-puncture weekend again.

I don’t know what to feel. I don’t feel like doing any work at all now.

Of course, it’s one of those things I knew I’d be getting myself into when I chose to return to school despite the chemotherapy. It’s all or nothing; you either have a steady stream of work to deal with or a drive-you-up-the-wall-crazy killer bubble of slack.

It’s not just about the essays and schoolwork, either. My 15th birthday was yesterday. It was a quiet birthday… guilty-pleasure pizza from Pizza Hut and brownie cake, just my family and I at home doing nothing. I was vaguely planning to make a Nurikabe out of the number 15 or something, but the day just came along and left, I never succeeded in the construction, and now the plan doesn’t mean anything anymore.

The solid wall of happy birthday wishes on Facebook. Not surprising. Three- to five-word messages from person to person on an annual basis. How much of the underlying humanity and warmth should I expect to be able to find from them? How much of my feelings should I return?

I don’t have a good outlet for my feelings. There’s always this facade of optimism, cheerfulness, and nonchalance. I can’t bring myself to break it, because I don’t know how to express what’s lying underneath. Maybe I’m afraid to look beneath the scars myself.

What’s the right response to “How are you feeling?” I could probably spout a hundred—maybe a thousand, who knows?— incoherent words on feeling lousy. I don’t know if that would get the point across. I don’t know if I actually want to get the point across. To me, the miserable feelings are miserable no matter whether I can find the words for them or not, and I’d rather not put any more burdens on anybody else if it doesn’t help myself.

Too lazy to do work… too lazy to even try looking for the spark of life, indulge my nerdy pleasures for a while. Only enough brainpower for blankly staring at puzzles like they’re works of modern art made by unfathomable philosophers in unfathomable moods. And yet time goes on.

Still, no answers, only a question mark at the end. Cliffhanger. Unknown.


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