the note

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Recently, I wrote that I was going to see a psychiatrist. I did. He was a gracious and kind man. I have seen a couple of shrinks before, many years ago. They devastated my life with their arrogance and disrespect for the lives they affected. Neither truly listened, and the last one fired me as a patient because I made him feel ‘sad’ because no pill he could find would right me.

As reluctant as I was to see this new doctor, I was quick to realize that he had the heart of a shaman. He seemed to hold certain things in high esteem, and recognized how important the correct application of his knowledge was. I think that he has an intrinsic understanding of human nature that would follow him in life, with, or without, the exchange of money. In my view, I have finally found someone who is knowledgeable by measure of heart and head, expresses a subdued ego, and that may actually help me out of the situation I’m in.

I was in a full on panic upon my arrival at the doctor’s office. Fortunately, I was alone in the waiting room. As I looked around, I saw a beautiful collection of art. It was eclectic, to say the least. The focal point of the collection was a post modern interpretation of American Gothic. I enjoyed it, but the eyes were quite disturbing. In any case, it pulled my mind away from the panic I felt, and I settled down after a while. When it was time to go back, another wave of panic hit that was much worse than the first. For a moment, I thought I’d die right then and there. Ridiculous, I know. But that’s the nature of panic.

The doctor spent the next hour asking questions that I had no answer for. As I explained my life to him, he sprinkled his insights here and there. Slowly, I began to understand that, perhaps, my life was not particularly normal. Most children aren’t abandoned by their parents. Most aren’t beaten on a daily basis by someone more suited to be a porn star than a grandmother.  And, I’m fairly sure that most kids have never had cover in a bar fight, or when shots were exchanged between people who couldn’t agree. Sadly, there are many, many, children who suffer much worse than I. That’s the world we live in.

Drunks. Violent and unpredictable, like wild animals, really. When you’re a child, you become used to the life you have and you adapt to it. I think that’s where my fascination with controlled violence comes from. Even my sexuality has been influenced by that obsessive need to understand the most subtle nature of violence. Violence teaches the violent a language, all their own. If you really take time to watch explosive situations unfold, you can almost predict the actions that are to follow, and in what form and to what degree those actions will manifest. It’s like ballet performed by the beastly man, unafraid and unrepentant, as he unleashes his power. Or, maybe it’s simply a horrible thing that I’ve rationalized into a field of study, for all intents and purposes, in order to be able to box it up and put it in a place where I feel okay with it. Potato/potahhhto, as it were.

Doc went on to ask about my marriage and adult life. It has been a second act of my childhood, though in a few different ways. Again, I didn’t realize there is a pathology to that which correlates to childhood experience. I do now. And, still, I find it hard to accept.

As I left, the doctor handed me a note. Perhaps it was in answer to my staunch denial that anything was truly wrong and that I simply needed a bit of help through the panic, so that I can live my life. At the top of the page, he had written in big, bold, underlined letters: YOU HAVE… Below, were a list of diagnoses. I thanked him, and left the office. When I got into my car, I opened the folded page and read its full contents. I still couldn’t understand, or see myself, as the type of person who’d allow things to get so bad in her life that these labels were fitting, even though the criteria for each described me to a T.

It’s been ten days since my visit with the good doctor. Every day, I’ve looked at that note and tried to feel something that connected me to those words. The unfortunate fact of the matter is that my lack of connection is what makes them true of me. I go see the doctor, again, this Friday. I don’t know what will come of the visit. I explained to him that I would not take a bunch of psych drugs, as I’ve managed pretty well without them, and those I’d taken before had no other effect than to ruin what was left of who I used to be. He assured me that he’d find a way to make things better without a bag full of pills. I’m choosing to trust him, for now, although I remain skeptical of people in his field, in spite of him seeming to be an exception.

Maybe, one day, I’ll have the courage to share the contents of the note. Today, I’m not that brave. Those labels carry weight and, in the past, I’ve found that friends and associates find that weight too much to bear, even though you are the same person they always knew. I benefit from the blogs here that are written by those who are brave enough to share their lives that way. I admire them. People who are label-free really don’t understand what it’s like. Words. They can give life…they can take it.

 

 

 

a.m. 

Sitting here in the stillness of a Mayberry morning, thinking of people I once loved,  who have passed on. I rarely allow myself to dwell on remembrances of them. I’ve never been one for mourning. Until Bennie died. It’s been fourteen months,  ten days,  since he left. I don’t think I’ll ever be the same. 

I can barely remember a day, since he died, that wasn’t filled with tears. My face has changed because of it. I didn’t know that could even happen. Till now. The shrink said I  mourn him because I have a type of Stockholm Syndrome. I can see why he’d think that, but I’m not sure it’s true. When you spend most of your life with someone, no matter how bad it was, I think it’s natural to miss them. Although, I can’t define what it is that I miss. It’s nice not to feel afraid, or to have to pretend and cover so much. It’s nice not splitting time between love and hate, as well. It’s strange to look at pictures he took of me in the months before he died and see the changes in my face. My eyes are always puffy and I don’t quite look like myself. He definitely left his mark. 

There’s something about this morning that feels beautifully somber. Grey skies weigh heavy, in many different ways, as this day begins. Their weight feels grounding and reassuring, somehow. Even the birds are quiet. I suppose everything takes time to reflect, now and then, especially on a morning such as this. 

scarlet blessings freely flow

When the Darkness came to her, she held out her ivory arm

Then she drew her blade from wrist to bend, and released her scarlet charm

Though her flesh felt as though it was, by fire, burned, she smiled contentedly

As her sanguine dreams were fulfilled and it was almost time to leave

Her gown grew red and wet with life that she could finally feel

She then collected  her coins for the Ferryman, and became so very still

As she laid  back into the arms of Darkness, and thanked Him for His gift

He gathered her up and held her close, drawing  her into Him

Next she knew,  she was at the river; the great and mighty Styx 

Awaiting her turn with the Ferryman, clutching the coins she’d brought for him

At last he came and helped her aboard, and she gladly paid her toll

Then she turned and thanked the Darkness, surrendering her soul 

One last thing; she thanked Him for helping her that night

Then,  forward,  on to Hades

To set her wrongs to right 

psychosis and silver linings

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It’s another peaceful evening, here in Mayberry. I’m here alone. Thinking. Fuck. So much is changing right now. Life. It’s…I don’t know. You think that things are one way, then find out that they aren’t anywhere near the way you thought. Not with people or life or goals.

A lot of people post about mental illness on here. I think they’re brave. You’d have to be. Because, once someone finds out you’re ‘not right’…you may as well have fallen off the face of the earth. I’ve heard. And, if that ever happened to me, I wouldn’t want anyone to know. You have to figure that, if you can live with something for decades and be fine, why rock that boat? I’m sure that would be a very lonely way to live, but, even so, you could find some way to feel normal. Ish. And, even if you didn’t…so? Keep smiling. Nobody ever wants to look past a smile to see if it’s real, or not. Never.

I was thinking about my brother, Captain Crazy. I wondered when it started in him. How long from Point A to Point B? We weren’t raised together, but we did live in the same household, off and on. He was a bit unhinged, even then. But he was a boy, and all boys are somewhat unhinged. I just wonder how long it really took for him to go insane. Did he know what was happening? Is that why he did the shit he did? Apparently, cocaine is not a cure for any sort of psychotic illness. Just sayin. Or meth. Or heroin. Or beating people bloody to collect on their debts. I have only known one other as violent as my brother. As violent as he used to be. He enjoyed bloodshed. Gun fights, knife fights…he just couldn’t get enough. He especially liked to use his hands. He had no fear of anyone. I guess that’s why he went to work in collections. I don’t know. That was a long time ago. Now, he’s fully psychotic and scares me to death. I still wonder, though…how long?

I guess I should go do something productive. I just don’t feel like it tonight. I miss someone very much, but there’s no point in it. Nothing will ever be right between us again. Friends are hard to come by. I don’t trust anyone. When I find someone I actually like AND trust…I feel amazing. But, then they do something that makes me mad…I say too much…all the wrong things…and, it’s done. Just like that. Sometimes, I think it’s good that my memory is so bad. If I can just not see his face for a week or so, it’ll be like he never even existed. Silver lining! There always is one, if you know where to look…

a simple request 


Don’t lie to me. 

You don’t have to answer. You  don’t have to say. But, a lie always seems to come back ’round the way. So, watch what you do and watch what you say.

Since I was a kid, the truth always found me. No  need to search,  it was always around me. 

If you come to me and your heart’s out of place, don’t expect a sympathetic look on my face.

You’ve already been told, but you still want to  try. Sure,  go ahead, but I’ll catch that lie. When it’s all over and it’s your turn to  cry,  remember what I said… 

Don’t lie to me 

the magical nonexistent 

I met up with a medicine man, on a hot summer day.

Despondent, I  listened closely to what he had to say .

He looked at me curiously, and formed his point of view .

Then he said, “Child take your leave, there is nothing good in you. 

It’s not that you are dead inside, you’ve simply been misplaced.

Everything that was worth the taking, you’ve given all away… “

if i could take it back… 

If ever I knew love, I let it go

Turned my back, walked away, if only in my mind

A burden I can’t bear, a longing I don’t share 

If ever I knew love, I didn’t feel it 

There is a certain pleasure in the free fall, once words are spoken that are true 

The look in the eye,  tear  on cheek… 

If ever I proclaimed true love, it was never meant for you 

Some are made with tender hearts,  yours, just  for the taking

Some are made with hearts of stone, who enjoy the other’s waiting

As for me,  I am neither that weak, nor am I that strong 

If ever I thought I knew true love, I knew it not till it was gone 

not today…


I feel freezing cold inside as I look around this place. Time seems to pass so quickly nowadays. I feel as though I’m looking through a veil, much like the one I wore on my wedding day. It was beautiful, and offered the slightest blur, making everything appear a bit askew and dreamy.

I much prefer the muted reality of veiled eyes, to the stark realities that have come to visit recently. The grief I thought was over now rushes over me, daily, and I am exhausted from fighting it. I know that I’m one in millions of the Nameless Faceless, who also struggle not to drown in a sea of pain that never gets its fill. 

I’m thinking of taking his picture off the wall. It’s too hard…his smiling face looking down at me, no matter the hour. I tend to remember him fondly, forgetting the pain between us. Sometimes, I remember that smile, amongst other things, was shared with a parade of other women over the last three decades. As I’ve said a hundred times, it never bothered me; I never took it personally. They were just a bunch of whores who would sleep with a man who was married, with children, at that. Lately, it has come to bother me. It’s a feeling that’s been creeping in over the last fourteen months since he died. I think it was the message from a particularly vicious female that planted this seed. Her name is Jenny. It caused me to wonder if the others hated me like she did. Then, I started questioning myself…trying to pin down exactly why he cheated. The only reason I can come up with is the same one I always came up with: Bennie had a character flaw that had nothing to do with me. It was just sex, except for two times, but those…incidents…were shut down quickly. He didn’t live long enough for Jenny to be an issue. What does it even matter now? It shouldn’t matter at all. Goddamn it. Just…nothing. Nothing. 

Well, I’m going to run to town. When I return, I’m moving his picture, taking his favorite tee shirt off of the pillow I hold while I’m sleeping, and I’ll be taking all other reminders of him and doing away with them. He almost broke me when he lived. I’ll be damned if I let memories of him and his pathetic side bitches take up another second of my time. 

In the words of Godsmack: 

“And I wonder as I tear away my skin
It’s taken me so long to stitch
These wounds from where I’ve been...”

I’m not up for opening old wounds. I simply don’t have the emotional reserves to waste. Adios, Jenny…and every other bitch who fucked, blew, or gave a hand job to my husband. Today, you all get sent off to the Cloud! Happy travels!

make friends with your monsters

It’s lonely here tonight. Beyond my window, it’s vantablack, nothing even resembles light. I’m unable to sleep…restless. Worried. An appointment at week’s end is bringing up things I’d rather leave to the graveyard, well kept and orderly in the back of my mind.

I fancy myself as an open book. I so despise secrets. However, my closet door will barely close for all the skeletons inside. Some haunt, others taunt. Others simply linger about in the shadows. Now and again, I’ve had occasion to pull them all out, like old dolls from childhood. They’ve been dusted off, polished, played with, and put away, until the next time they are needed to bear witness. 

This Friday, their time will come ’round again, as I look into the face of a psychiatrist and explain away prior diagnoses and current behavior. I’ll minimize the fact that I cannot even shop for myself, or explain away why I, sometimes, don’t leave the house for weeks at a time. 

I know that, no matter what I say, it’s going to be the same diagnosis. I have been untreated for thirteen years now. Except for the panic, I’m fine. You learn to live with what you must. That’s life for everyone. I’m no exception. 

Psych drugs don’t work on me. They say the state of the art treatment for a drug resistant patient, once you’ve tried them on different combos of magic beans, is electro shock therapy. The lil shocker looks like something you’d plug into an iPod. I’m sure it’s a much kinder, gentler way of fixing damaged goods. However, I won’t be a participant in the snake oil carnival. I’m only going in order to satisfy a legal matter. 

I don’t like labels that cause others to look at you with an awkward eye. Particularly if you’ve handled most of the requisite aspects of life in exactly the way you should. I also find labels terrifying. When I look at my brother, I can’t help but wonder if that will be me, one day. I couldn’t bear it. Lost in my own head, keeping company with only those who live inside it. I’d never let that happen. I simply could not. I hate that there are words to define it.

I think I’ll try and get some sleep. Surely, it can’t be too far off. I pray for dreamless slumber tonight. I’m exhausted from these nights of constant interruption, punctuated by the sound of those old skeletons, clammering about like broken wind chimes. 

cheesy word vomit 

I saw her sitting, all alone, in the tall grass of the field. The night had just begun to fall, yet she sat there, perfectly still. 

The only thing that moved upon her lovely face, was an expression of pure joy, as the full moon took its place. 

As I watched, the girl still sat in the big wide open field. Bathed in silver, she raised her arms to collect the silvery yield.

In silence, I stood, wondering what this lovely one might do, if she knew that I was watching as she praised the mighty moon. 

At last, she stood, tall and proud, this frail and lovely girl. Arms, still outstretched to gather the silver, as moonbeams began to swirl.

I watched as she was lifted up, like an angel taking flight. Pulled up into the moonbeams that shined down on her that night.

I watched until the girl disappeared into the giant moon, then I began to walk away, wondering what I should do.

Was there someone that I should tell of this magic I’d seen? Would anyone accept it? Would anyone believe?

As I turned to walk away, I began to feel so cold. My legs were numb, and my body felt as though death had taken hold. 

Just then, I felt a moonbeam fall upon my face. Just like the girl before me, I reached out to take my place. 

Before I knew what happened, I was wrapped up in the light, of a silver moon sent to bring souls on home that night. 

As I ascended, I looked back, upon my body; broken. The girl that I had seen before shared with me the Great Unspoken,

“If you go before you’re ready; if you are taken far too soon…for a time, God let’s you play among the stars and moons.” 

That is all that I can share of this tale of mine. I don’t know if it means a thing to you, or will stand the test of time. 

But these words are honest, as honest as they are true. Perhaps, one night, you’ll consider them, beneath a silver moon…