Borderline Girl Song Week Five: Fiona Apple “Every Single Night”

June 12, 2012

My heart’s made of parts of all that’s around me

And that’s why the devil just can’t get around me

Every single night’s alright, every single night’s a fight
And every single fight’s alright with my brain

I just want to feel everything

~Fiona Apple


The fever hit again in the afternoon.

Yep, I’m fighting a cold guys. It started Saturday when I hit my goal of fourteen laps in forty-five minutes at the pool. It came full swing at me Sunday night and yesterday morning. But yesterday was also my first day at the job, so I couldn’t back out.

I got to the office at two and Mansie showed me a few things since she’ll be my supervisor. I wish I could tell you guys what it is exactly that I’ll be doing (truth is I don’t even know yet), but all I’m going to say is I’m the “New Media Intern,” and H, Mansie’s boss wants me to have as much creative freedom as I can possibly get. That’s what she said he told her. He did tell me he saw something in me and that’s exciting but also very scary considering how unstable I’ve been.

What does he see? What is expected of me? I’m too much of a perfectionist to not drown in my own questioning and self doubt. Maybe that’s why I’ve never responded so well to compliments.


I think the job has been a blessing even though it’s stipend pay, even though I have some immigration concerns, even though the pay is next to nothing. Why? It’s something that will keep me busy for ten to twenty hours a week. Keeping me busy, means I’ll have no time for tears.

At the same time, I’m afraid I’ll break down at the office. I’ve barely been there one day and already I feel I’m having to fight the Pretty Little Demons (PLDs) to the point of exhaustion. They’re a funny gang, these demons.


There’s so much I want to write, but I haven’t been able to get my head around any of it. Or rather, as Fiona Apple sings in this lovely song, “the devil just can’t get around me”. Oh but it does. It just comes back with its gang of PLDs.

Speaking of devils and demons, I used to have night terrors as a kid and one of them was a recurring dream of the devil coming after me. It was like the devil lived in my closet. Damn Catholic superstitions! And now I’ve begun to have them again, only I can’t remember much.


I’ve been swimming as a way to pacify the PLDs but today with the cold, the coughing, the phlegm, I had to hold it off. The fever in my body is down today thankfully, but the fever in my brain burns on. A funny thing this fire–this raw emotion. Kiera Van Gelder, the author of “The Buddha & The Borderline: My Recovery From Borderline Personality Disorder Through Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Buddhism and Online Dating,” mentions this fire a lot. Ever seen the picture of the famous monk that set himself on fire? Kiera mentions that monk and says that that’s how she feels, though much less noble. That’s how I feel, like I’m burning myself alive. It shouldn’t have struck me as odd though because fire has always been a metaphor for intense and passionate emotions.


What did strike me ass odd was the fact that the emotion comes with a fight. An inner struggle that is almost unbearable sometimes. Kiera always comes back to the metaphor of a “burnt patient” with no “emotional skin” which Dr. Linehan, the mother of Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), first gave in her manual on treating borderlines.

Last night, Kiera’s words stuck out and struck me:

I try not to let go of the mindfulness practice. I observe the emotions crest and clash, tidal in the coming and going of perspectives. Opposing forces battle within me: I want to get better. I want to die. I want to be loved. I want to spit on the face of everyone I see. Such drastic shifts exhaust me, and I know they baffle others. And it’s gaining momentum again. My mercurial self is clamoring for a foothold, and I’m slipping. Borderlines are experts at wrestling with demons; the problem is, we always seem to lose. Fight long enough, and it only makes sense to join the demons. What other choice is there?

Every single night I fight the gang of Pretty Little Demons, and they seem to have recruited new members in the last two months. Every single night is a battle with my brain as Fiona says. But it’s all right! The Mouse is having ping pong matches with them every day, and when I swim, I can drown them out a little. Sometimes, like on Saturday, I’ll get a crying fit while a do a lap, but it’s alright. It’s alright honey.

If there ever were “borderline girl” songs, they would be in Fiona Apple’s entire discography as it is a reflection of my very being. Thank you Fiona for doing what you do best, write about your PLD’s, sing about them, and smash your angry hands at the piano. Kiera, like Fiona, like myself are drawn to the creative fields. “What other choice is there?” Kiera asks but answers by knowing that she just has to “transform this despair into power”.

That’s what Fiona has done with her music and what it means to me. That’s what I hope to do.


Does life have to be a battle? I don’t know. Life just is. Yet seeing the way impalas run from a lion, seeing the way they clash their horns when fighting over a female makes me think differently. Seeing my own survival, seeing my owns demons clash makes me think differently. And I know that for some of us, it’s an all out war–those of us who, as Jill over at Not Quite Lost, mentioned “live in survival mode”.

addendum: I recently found out Fiona Apple’s fourth albums is complete and will be released soon! This song is from the new albums. Check this out! Yes, I’m going to marry her someday though neither of us cares for marriage.

And forgive my rambling, off-beat writing. These days I’m not so coherent.


Then brother get back ’cause my breast’s gonna bust open
The rib is the shell and the heart is the yolk
And I just made a meal for us both to choke on ….

And maybe I’d relax, let my breast just bust open


DISCLAIMER: I’m using the “borderline girl” phrase as sort of a mocking/sarcastic term. There’s no such thing as a stereotypical “borderline girl”. You can have a condition, but you are NOT the condition and these songs aren’t necessarily written by or about borderline girls; they merely reflect certain parts of my life as I see fit. This is what they mean to me, someone who has been diagnosed as having BPD and is only beginning to work with herself and her deadly emotions.

23 Responses to “Borderline Girl Song Week Five: Fiona Apple “Every Single Night””

  1. the howler and me said

    so, the post is NOT incoherent….despite what you might think

    • PAZ said

      🙂 Yeah? I only feel that way then… Hmmm. I hope yesterday when I was at the office and kept zoning out, it wasn’t as obvious as I felt it to be.

  2. lyxia said

    Swimming is good for depression and mania. Its like the little dirt in the mind swims away and you can rest in the water, floating. Ahhh floating…. the greatest cure…..

    • PAZ said

      Oh it is! It is THE BEST for my little horrible mixed-hypomania. Flooooating. mmmmmm. I hope to go tomorrow now that my cold is better and that I don’t have work. I got laid off from my internship. 😦

  3. It can be scary when someone has expectations of you, even if they’re based on a perception of your talent. Have confidence in yourself, you can manage yourself for the time you’re at work, if you make up your mind to – do you think so? Anyway everybody’s crappy when they’ve got a cold, it’s not the best time to be taking on new challenges – but you’ll do fine.

  4. Jaen Wirefly said

    Her voice is magic.

  5. Nope, not incoherent at all. Beautiful. It made a lot of sense. But maybe we are just in the same bubble.

    • PAZ said

      Hello Sailor!

      I’m such a grammar Nazi. I think what I meant was it wasn’t as clearly written as I’d like but then again, I don’t even know what I mean with that either. Blue ugh. We are in our bubble heads…

      I’m at the office right now and guess what? First off, Mansie isn’t here because she has pink eye, then I get called in by C who fires me!

      Lol. Ok. I didn’t really get fired. But I’m borderline and that’s how I saw it…. Not really. Let me back up cause I nearly had a panic attack earlier. Is getting light-headed and having heart palpitations and getting out of breath considered part of a panic attack?

      Anyway, I got here at 11am. It’s past noon here. He calls me in and says he has good and bad news depending on how I look at it. (Maybe I should write a post lol) He says the national program director wants to cut the internship program. He said he would hate to see me go, so he wants to hire me for real… Once he gets the funds–it’s a nonprofit. So anyway, he asks how much I’d go for…. Im 26 and I’ve never worked for sallery and I feel like shit because I didn’t know what to say. So I said, 14 dollars an hour minimum which I feel is very low but then again, they’re a nonprofit and it may be too high. He says he’ll get back with me in two weeks. I’m still at the office cause I have to wait for MetroLift bus service which is scheduled for 2,

      Oh and then there’s the immigration issue. If he does hire me, I’ll have to tell him the truth. My hands are shaking Sailor 😦

      • Ooooo that sounds confusing.
        For a start – I think it sounds like a panic attack…. deep breaths P, deep breaths!!
        And I would probably see that as being fired too. BUT from this side of the pond I can also see that he doesn’t want to lose you. He asked you to work for real!! With money and everything!! Even though he didn’t say yes to you straight away about the $14hr, he also didn’t say no straight away either. If it was a definite no, he would have said it straight away.
        I don’t really understand immigration issues. It’s all different over her. But if he really sees something in you, like he said he did, it will all be OK.
        Listen to the Sailor brain today. It’s actually quite sensible and feeling good at this moment, deep breaths, deep breaths, the universe unfolding in exactly the way it is supposed to (or so I’ve heard) xoxoxoxo

        • PAZ said

          Thank you so much Sailor! Lol You guys are like a first response team.

          I went down to the lobby to catch some breaths and practice distress tolerance from what I remember of DBT. I also called my dad, though your reply was more helpful. Hehe. Shhh don’t tell him.

          The immigration issue and immigration issues in genreal, are such bullshit in my eyes. I’ve been here 20 years but I’m not authorized to work, to get benefits, to vote, to do anything really. I’m lucky I get to see doctors. Beluga.

          Thank you for letting me rant. Hehe. The emailing thing is so funny. I promise I’ll email tonight when I’m home. I’m not on a computer right now. My mom had bough an iPad on a payment plan and that’s what I’m using. It’s so quirky to type with… Anyway, thank you. I’ll write back ASAP.

          Glad you’re feeling well today! Definitely helped me get a more balanced perspective. 🙂


          • LOL I knew there was a reason behind feeling sensible today – to be your Knight in shining armour, hehehe.
            Yeah the madosphere is a good place to be for back up.
            To me, that seems silly to not be allowed to work. If you are willing to work, surely you should be allowed to? And wouldn’t the government-y people prefer it if you did work? Eek, it sounds a bit backwards. We have a lot of European immigrants here, and they seem to get jobs easily as well as health care – they get care on the NHS too. I’m not very good at politics. I kind of think the world belongs to everybody…… That’s the idealist in me talking again.
            Don’t worry about the email thing. I just wanted to know you were OK!! xoxox

        • PAZ said

          I’m an idealist too. That’s why I said I had too many leftist diatribes in my about. I get the concept of borders, but I don’t like it.

  6. P.S glad you dropped by, I was getting worried because you hadn’t been around for what seems like ages (see You know you are borderline when – )

    • PAZ said

      Speaking of email responses, I need to reply to yours. I’m so bad at replying yet I get very anxious when I don’t get responses right away. LOL

  7. Monica Savage said

    Thanks sooooooooo infinately much! I needed that. Having been recently diagnosed as borderline, it’s been a relief and a burden. But I guess that’s the nature of the big, giant, ugly, confusing beast. I, too, adore Fiona Apple. Having started listening to her again, I’ve realized the reason I love her so much is that she’s completely dusconnected.

    “Hunger hurts. And I want him so bad oh it kills.
    Cuz I know I’m a mess he don’t wanna clean up. “

  8. Amanda said

    I just listened to her new album. OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG

    Okay, now that I got that ^ out of my system (FIONA!!!), I would like to thank you for sharing Kiera with us. I'm going to have to look into her work. I really enjoyed this post. Touched on a lot for me. Had my own crying fit yesterday. Of course, I was alone and hid it from anyone who might have tried to help. Sometimes you just have to let it out, ya know? I hate slumps. I happen to be in one now…but I am still trying to "transform this despair into power."

    • PAZ said

      Keep on trying. I’ve been trying to transform this despair into power most of my life. I think I’ve done so more than I give myself credit for.

      Oh man, I don’t know if you’ve read the grieving post, but I’ve been crying every day. It sucks, but I shy away. I don’t like people seeing me cry. I just rather the little dog, Luna comfort me if she’s around because honestly other people usually don’t when they try. I mean, they do, just not when I’m crying usually but that maybe because I don’t let them.

      And lucky you! I haven’t even heard the album yet! Kiera’s book has been good thus far. I’d recommend it even to those who are not “borderline” and who’s to say, eh?

Spit it!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: