Creativity Magazine

Denial: a Transitory Pain Killer

Posted on the 27 May 2012 by Muhammadhazem @MuhammadHazem

Denial: a transitory pain killer
''I—I can't do this. I just—''
'' LOOK, this is your life not mine! I am just doing my job as a professional. I have never said this before to a patient but you seriously do need to take the reins of your life, young man, '' the doctor impatiently interrupted while tapping the floor with his carefully polished shoes.
Silence permeated for a few slow-pacing seconds. The situation brought me immense discomfort. My wife sat across of me, looking disappointed. I forced myself off the chair and gestured for my wife to get off as well.
'' Before you go, Muhammad, '' the doctor remarked, '' you have to know that the prescription I wrote  down for you is your sole path to redemption. ''
'' Yea, '' I responded in defeat and indescribable frustration. 

I shuffled my way through the door, indicating my overwhelming feelings with a stagger and bowed head. '' I do not know what to say, Muhammad, '' my wife confessed. '' I know it is hard for you to accept the prescription and commit to it, but what choice do you have? '' She said in almost a whisper. At this precise moment, I collapsed in tears. I sobbed like a homeless child. I groaned and quivered. '' I am  sorry Nada for always letting you down, '' I feebly murmured.   As usual, my wife lavished her unconditioned motherly feelings on her insecure husband; a situation which   stripped me the right of ego-driven power.  '' It's okay, dear. We will work it out. I am here for you, '' She comforted as she crouched down to wipe  the tears of the child she did not gave birth to. I rested idly in the back seat as my wife drove us home. She peered at me with her smiling eyes through the front mirror, signifying her support in a non-verbal manner.  

I felt ashamed. I felt willing to face my illness. But my fear of confrontation outweighed any other inclinations. The prescription was shoved carelessly into my back pocket, crumpled like a useless receipt of purchase that offers no further benefit. 

We made it home. My wife swiftly abandoned the driver's seat and turned to open the door for her overweight husband; a husband whose problems added intangible extra pounds to his slim shape; a husband who flunked to portray the image of courage and relentlessness that would satisfy the emotional yearnings of a young woman. Rather, a young princess. 

'' Muhammad, if I am of any value to your heart, give the prescription some consideration. I hate to see you as disheartened as you are now. I took you to the best DFS doctor in town. Regardless, you are the only one who can get yourself out of it. People who care can only guide; they can only give encouraging pats and sensual hugs. You are a real man, Muhammad. I have faith in you, '' she encouraged in a manner that depromoted my eloquence of speech to the stutters of a disoriented child.  
I kissed her forehead with a tearful cheek. 

I intuitively headed to the bathroom as soon as I stepped into the only witness of my inner battles—our house. I headed to the bathroom intuitively to break free a suppressed need to scream amid the heavy fall of my tears onto the ceramic floor. And I did; I screamed but I did muffle them. I wanted screams that only my soul could hear; I wanted noise that could only stir alarm among the void in my soul. I did not want to plead for the attention of my wife. I wanted confrontation. I wanted a way out. '' 2 ego-bruising acts per day; abstinence from acts of self-medication; sincere confessions and disclosure of weakness in a weekly manner, '' the prescription included. The effortless act of eying the jotted words inspired me to swallow hard. I have been diagnosed with the unfortunate disease of denial. I suffered the troublesome consequences of it. I remained a child for as long as I can remember. I persisted once; I was determined earlier but the frequency of my screw ups sucked all the perseverance I once claimed.

As defined by scientists, denial is a disease with symptoms ranging from knee-jerk defensiveness to leaving the deepest and most profound life problems unattended for; denial deepens the love for comfort zones and helps us perceive acts of liberation and betterment in a formidable manner; a force of illness that casts unprecedented havoc upon the most promising humans. Denial reinforces a childish fear of facing problems, and denial is what I suffered from.   I held the prescription unsteadily. I glared at it till it became a blur. I sighed and threw my burdens-inclusive head backwards, to find my eyes in direct confrontation with the sheer whiteness of the bathroom ceiling. It was a moment similar to that of deciding upon the greatest matters of all; a moment in which I summoned the mental clarity necessary to figure out what to do next. 

Let me share with you a glimpse of my dull, mildly flavored life. I caught denial in a manner that can almost seem intentional. As miniscule problems emerged across my life, I practiced the habit of avoiding them, finding comfort in distractions and acts of self-medication. I always found an accusation in the most kindly-served advices. I grew to see flaws in others, claiming divinity in each and every step I treaded. I poured out anger, saw deformation in the handsomeness of my figure. I led an irresponsible life till denial became a habitual mechanism of survival and emotional security.

The country's top Denial-Facing Specialist grew tired of me. My wife suffered the stifling consequences of leaving all of my life problems unanswered, unchallenged. Her insistence on viewing our relationship as a partnership always piqued a hoarse scolding voice inside of me. In times of seclusion and utter loneliness, I took the role of a scolder, and found ill pleasure in slapping my own cheeks in a personal attempt to reignite a deceased will. 

'' Are you ok, dear? '' my ever-beautiful wife questioned.   '' I am, Nada, '' I immediately responded to remove the unease in my wife's heart. '' I will be out in a couple  of minutes, '' I reassured.

To impair the coherent roots of denial, I had to start a journey in which I come to face my fears and accept  them like a true man; I had to approach each and every deserted situation that I earlier escaped. The fresh memory of all that I would have to face stifled me, it lured me to befriend further acts of medication; to plunge in the spiral of work to forget all about what I have to face. 

I am a chronically occupied person by nature. And, surprisingly, I enjoyed my hectic pace as it gave me no time for any thorough self-punishment. My renewable occupations were my leading acts of self-medication; they reinforced my denial and forced it to loom larger and more powerful. I used to have each and every meal while watching television, not necessarily because of something specific I am following, but to earn no loneliness and, in turn, no self-punishment. But, unexpectedly, the long leave I took from work due to specific family obligations encouraged my wife to come clean about how much she wants me to lose my chronic state of denial that is affecting her as well.

I am recognized among my friends as the loudest and the funniest; they had no idea about the underlying reasons forcing my naïve attempts to forget all about my problems. My wife only knew and she was the only person I confided in; my most valuable wife.
'' The dinner is ready, Muhammad! The way you always like it, '' my wife cheered. 

Signs of bewilderment nested upon my face. I was at loss of words, truly. '' How could you be—how do you do that? '' I playfully questioned. She chuckled. '' Regardless of all that you do, Muhammad, my faith in you persists to remain. I know that you have the power in you to brush off all that is weighing you down. You can do it. My image of you has never changed ever since the day my eyes met yours, '' she comforted. As usual, my ridiculous emotional nature brought me into tears. It was not only the charm of her words but the depth of my problems that unveiled tears continuously. '' Do you believe I can make it, Nada? '' I doubtfully asked. '' Do you believe I can overcome my fears? ''  '' I do believe, Muhammad. I have always believed, my one and only man, '' she joyfully said.  Of course, such words were melody to my ego and reinforcement to the state of determination I was strenuously trying to recall a few minutes ago. Denial is an evil illness; an inherent mechanism of momentary survival that the virtuous in us attempts to defy and defeat. Denial inspires shallow and mechanic prayers, unfelt apologies, untaken risks, and unfixed fears. Facing it connects us to a deeper understanding of who we are.   With the encouragement of my life partner, the partial resurrection of my will and the truthful prescription of my doctor, I accepted a journey of disclosures and confrontations, praying for redemption and remedy from my illness. Denial and its rather absurd effects on me was what I aimed for extinguishing.

There is a war that is far more daunting than that of gunned down men and beheaded soldiers; a war against our fears, insecurities, sense of resistance and doubt; a war against all that attempts to lay us back, idle and inactive in our beds; a war against ourselves and the misleading impulses that it might crave.
 Inspired by: Self-awareness and knowledge of my own type of denial

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