It feels like some kind of torture, some kind of crazy cruelty so perfect it would have to be planned. First, for one marvelous measure of time you glide across the globe of your mind, the depths of the oceans and the peaks of the mountains all equally beautiful and rich. Then it starts, and the pain pulls you so far into yourself you can't imagine a world beyond your skin and you reel inside this wail and claw, wish you believed in prayer so you could pray for it to be over but you have no breath to pray with anyway. It ends when it ends and you gasp out of it and shake your head and count your fingers and toes and blessings and make jokes, as you do. Then it sucks you in again, you blacken every thing on your mind's horizon and take a deep breath because it will surely be your last, this one, and you fall and you fall. With the distance you can manage, you try to be scientific and measure the pain on scales, measure the blood, measure the tears, try to put words on it, try to stay silent, try anything. And then it's over. You're losing your mind probably. In the sweet breaks between, you scour the internet, take online tests, talk to friends, change your diet, put on warm sweaters and take them off again in endless cycles, suck the sweetness and softness out of what you have by questioning why it isn't like that all the time, why the bitter and sharp tear. You assign yourself stoicism, after all you were the one who sliced through and set fire, and why not continue but then when the pain is there you remember that you cried then, too. Count your blessings. Count the people who have it worse. Count the length of the pause. Count how far you have come, how much less far you have to go. Count on your strength.