Allow me to preface this by saying that, for those of you who have not yet read my "goodbye" article, you might want to view it before continuing with this article. That article can be found at -- http://clintfranklinblog.blogspot.com/2011/09/clint-says-goodbye.html
After receiving a small mountain of emails, Facebook comments, and other forms of communication, I just want to make things a little more clear for those of you who may be confused about my intentions.
First off, to those of you who have offered me a place to stay, offered to visit me (even from across the Atlantic Ocean), or offered to "work with me" in some way...
I appreciate your offers, but I cannot accept them. I am a different person from the one you met -- a different person than I was just a few weeks ago -- and I'm afraid that it would just end badly. I am dead on the inside. I can no longer look anyone in the eye, because they can tell that my spirit no longer exists. I could tell it when I looked at my mom yesterday. She would normally ask me, "what's the matter?", when I look depressed. Now she just avoids looking me in the eye. I can't imagine it would be any better with anyone else.
Truth is, none of it will help. I would love to see some of you -- whether for the first time in a few years; or the first time, ever. But I can't allow anyone else to come near me. Let me explain it in these terms:
The only thing that has kept me alive is my friends and family. For the vast majority of my life, I have wished that I had the guts to end my life. As of late, I have realized that it wasn't that I was too scared of the process... but rather what is left afterward. My friends and family. The thought of what it would do to my friends and family simply makes me furious that I would consider death in the first place.
However, I am at the end of the line. I've tried to wear a smile when you are around. I have tried to cry on your shoulder, and give you a shoulder to cry on. I have tried to always be there for you. I have tried to be loyal, and be as available to you as possible. But in reality, I have always kept my friends at arm's-length to an extent, though it hasn't always been intentional. Why? Because deep down, I always knew that I was destined for destruction.
My duality -- the two beings inside me -- has been engaged in a war of attrition. They both despise each other. One is the creator -- the healer, the comforter, the one driven by the desire to better the world. The other is the destroyer -- the spiteful, hateful part of me that thrives on destruction -- of myself, and anything around me.
The destructive nature within me is far stronger than its counterpart. But the good in me has managed to keep things in check up to now. I have no idea how much longer that will remain true. Every moment that passes by sees that the evil in me is gaining ground on the good. It is merely a matter of time before I have nothing else. When that happens, God have mercy on anyone who happens to be nearby.
I explained to you that I've managed to keep you all mostly at arm's length. This is why.
The people I have tended to keep around me have turned out to be the most wonderful people. I love you too much to let harm come to you. But I am dying inside -- actually, I suppose it would be more accurate to say that I have already died. But the only thing that keeps me in this world is my mom. She is the most immediate source of strength because we live in the same house. I have kept you all at arm's length, which has eaten away at me over time. It has not been so easy with Mom, because it's kind of hard to not be around her, when you live under the same roof.
Lately, I have begun to exhibit a degree of contempt for my mother. Not because she's a bad mother -- quite the opposite -- it is because she loves me. I am beginning to hate my mother because she loves me. Just yesterday, I found myself thinking along the lines that if there were some way to be rid of her, I would be free of the one strong length of chain still holding me to this God-forsaken existence. I would be free to give up completely, and put an end to my miserable existence.
I mean, how horrid a thought -- I actually wished my mother dead, because she loves me so much that I can't bear the thought of what my death would put her through!
The evil in me is winning. That realization made it obvious.
So, all I know to do is to cast aside everyone I've ever cared about, so that when the time comes that I give in, it will soften the sting... even if ever so slightly, it will be worth it to me if I can alleviate some of your pain by simply keeping myself away from you, so that when my time is up, our bonds will be weak.
One of you said something to me along the lines of God turning a deaf ear to my pleas for strength to fight this evil was not scriptural. God always gives us an answer to our prayers. All I can assume at this point is that God has listened, and has given his answer.
I am ultimately responsible for what I have become. I was too weak to resist this evil from taking over my soul. Over time, I have set myself up for one misstep after another, until I finally started to fall down a hole with no bottom. It is my fault. I should have allowed myself to become closer to you. I should not have built this wall around me. Maybe if I had gone a little more out of my way to let you in, I would have been able to win this fight.
But I messed up. I waited too long, and I didn't stop myself before I began hurtling down an endless spiral to Hell. The good in me is gone. All that is left is a conflicted, self-destructive personality in a husk of flesh and bone. No spirit to speak of. I let destruction wear away too much of my being. I gave in too easily too many times. The time of reckoning is coming -- and instead of making a choice for good, I allowed evil to decay my being and swallow my soul.
In the end, I have no one to blame but myself for this. The answers were there all along, but I chose to ignore them. My stupidity will force me to continue to ignore them.
If ever you valued the person I used to be, then you must let go of me. If I am going to die soon, I would rather do so leaving as little damage in my wake as possible. Think of it as my last attempt to stab my finger into the eye of evil before I lay down my life. Nothing else can be done. This is not about fighting the flesh -- this is about fighting a demon. A demon that has resided in me for far too long, and refuses to let go. If I am to stop this evil from causing too many casualties, I have to do it alone. I simply cannot allow anyone else to get hurt because of what I've done... so I must ask you to please stay away. Forget that I existed. Just know that when I finally die, I may not rest in peace, but I will certainly find some solace in the fact that I was able to save someone from my evil.
I'm sorry for even having to say all this. I know it's not easy for you. I just wanted to make things crystal clear. There is no winning this battle for me. I have shunned you all. I have shunned God himself. The only thing I have left now is evil. This is my fate -- but not one I wish to share with anyone else -- ANYONE.
For your sake and mine... stay out of my way.