this and that

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It’s a beautiful morning. Outside, the birds chirp and carry on with their tiny labors, making the world a better place by their very existence. It would be a blessing to be like a bird or wolf…to instinctively know, from the very day you are born, that you have a purpose and what that purpose is.

I’m not sure if I’ll ever know what my reason to be is. Yes, I am a mother. But, I believe we’re all here for a reason, so it stands to reason that my boys would have been born of another were I not here. In fact, nothing that I’ve ever done couldn’t have been accomplished by a stand-in, so to speak. It’s humbling…that thought. And it’s why I would like to make the next years of my life more deliberate and conscious than the last I have lived.

He has been dead 39 days now, and I feel as though I’m am beginning to wake up. The Dark Empty is still there. Yet, I am beginning to feel other things, too. Things like strength and perspective. Each day that separates me from his death is filled with less trepidation than the one that came before it. I feel him losing his grip on my mind, and that is a wonderful feeling. My heart still hurts for him. There is grief for the man he once was, as I’ve said before. I feel especially bad that he died the way he did. But I’m proud of him for facing it like a man. Even the doctors said he went into surgery without a tear in his eye. He said, “Let’s do this.” I guess those were his last words. It would be daunting to realize your last moments had finally found you, and to turn towards them instead of begging the Time Keeper for more. I’m proud of him for that. It is the bravest thing he’d ever done. God bless his soul.

Benno

I miss him this morning, although I’m not sure why. Mornings were never good when he was alive. As soon as my eyes opened, I was aware of the tension in the air. It was thick and weighed heavily on me. It was always better when he woke up before I did. Waking him was like pulling a pin from a grenade…something was about to go off and you’d better take cover. But, if I didn’t wake him, he’d sleep late and be angry that I let him do it. It was a lose/lose situation.

I have real serenity in my life now. I’m a little scared because I have two loose ends, legally speaking, to tie up, but I feel that I can face them just fine. They are only technicalities and, if I can’t take care of them, myself, that’s what my attorney is for. There is no one here to make them seem monstrous or as though it’s the end of the world. I’m ok with the normal goings on of life. Paying bills…having to put them off and juggle finances. Normal things people do. He always made those things seem so frightening, as though they were insurmountable problems. He kept me so nervous that my hair was falling out. And I think he actually loved doing that to me.

In the end, his actions caused us to lose most of our material possessions. It was much more difficult for him because he grew up in a pampered, upper middle class, environment. I was not as fortunate, by any means. I suppose, for me, it was just like being picked up and sat back down right where I started in life. We were able to save this place…his family land…this little house. And that’s because of me, which is something he resented till the day he died. I discovered that after reading some things he had written to another woman about me and the situation. I never expected accolades for making sure this place stayed in the family. That’s a good thing, since there were none offered. lol! But to read the things he wrote…to see, in black and white, how he actually felt about me and his family land and such…it was literally a shock. To read outright lies he wrote to her about me hurt so much. I shouldn’t have read those things, but they were right there and I wanted to know, I guess. The way she responded to him…it was very sweet. She was very much on his side and I think she really loved him. I told him, over and over, I wanted him to find someone to make him happy…to have a life with. I was perfectly willing to leave here, as long as I got my share of the land. Which was only a fraction of it. I didn’t even want half. He passed up happiness with a woman he obviously cared for in order to make sure I ‘didn’t get one square inch’ of his property. Wow. And here I sit with all of it. Irony is a motherfucker. So is Karma.

Wow…I don’t know where all that came from. I guess I’m letting go a little more every day. I still cry every day, but not as much. And I realized weeks ago that I wasn’t grieving the man who died. I was grieving the man he once was…the man I loved and who loved me. I was grieving the best dad I ever saw and I’ll always be grateful that he was the man I had children with because I don’t think there was ever a better father. But there are no tears for that fucker who died.

 

free thought ramblilng

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I’m missing something, inside. It’s something that was never really there, but having him in my life made me feel as though it was. The pain he caused made my insides feel full…bursting at the seems at all times. I was an emotional Roman alone in my vomitorium, awaiting the next course.

Tonight, I feel the vacuous me that I am. Neither drug, nor drink can stir any emotion but dread. The dread one might feel as they stand at cliff’s edge, wondering if someone might come along and give them a push. Because that’s all I need. I need push. A reason. The lightest tap will do.

In my wildest dreams, I never thought he’d die. I wished it, begged God for it…There were many times that I was close to dispatching him, myself. The love his sons had for him saved his sorry ass. I think that’s part of why I feel like I do. I am shocked that I didn’t kill him. Is that bad? I don’t know anymore. I honestly don’t. He always said I was a sociopath. If I were, he’d have been gone long ago. I’m only a woman who has lived with a fucking pain machine for three decades. That’s all. I. Am. Only. A. Woman.

I feel as though I’m dying, too. I can feel the cold of the Darkness inside of me. It’s all consuming, and something I haven’t felt in a very long time. Even as a child, it was there. I was a child living in a world of degenerates. Every minute of spare time was spent tagging along from one bar to the next with my grandparents, who raised me. It isn’t easy for a girl child in those circumstances. My Darkness saved me. It allowed me to recognize the Darkness in others and, knowing mine was always stronger, as my grandmother taught me, I was able to deal with them. These disgusting men with their wandering eyes…hands…stealing kisses from a child. Disgusting maggots. I wish I’d had the ability to kill every, single, one. I never told my dad because I knew that he WOULD kill them. My grandmother knew, but did nothing about it. I quickly learned the art of being frozen in a smile. I was a mimic; a puppet with no emotion of her own, only that which she adopted from others.

I don’t understand how his death has brought these things up in my mind and heart. I don’t allow these thoughts in my world. They are lighting in a storm, already raging. Perhaps it’s because I have never had a moment on my own. Truly on my own. I went from home to being a wife, mother, reconciled with my own mother…the list is long. Maybe the pain was good for me because it occupied my mind. And there was love. There were good times. Great times, even. But things didn’t end well between he and I. And, the second he was gone, I felt it…the Darkness at my shoulder. Within a week, the memories came to the forefront, tired of their home in the recesses of my brain, I suppose. They seem to have mixed quite well with the guilt and sorrow and grief. I feel like a playground for devils and fallen angels. Overrun and pushed around. Yet, I know that nothing they do can compare to the damage I can do to myself, of my own free will.

I’m tired now. Meds are finally beginning to do their job. I hope to sleep tonight. I hope he stays put and leaves me alone. I want him to go on to wherever he is supposed to be and leave me be. I want to close my eyes and see nothing but blackness. No faces. Not his, not anyone’s. I just want to be left alone to figure out who I’m supposed to be. It has to happen soon, or I’ll cease to be.

the Judas inside

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Last night was eventful in ways I do not wish to consider right now. So many little things occurred in such short time that I neglected to force myself to really think. My superstitions and uncertainty took over and I was left a sniveling child longing for her mother’s arms.

Terror is a feeling I was familiar with as a child. It was brought on by that which I could touch and feel, and the horrifying imaginations those things left me with. I’ve denied myself the luxury of that feeling since the day I left home. Last night was the single exception in all of these years. So many pieces fell into place in the deep and dark of the night, that I could not gather myself, or make strong. However, I’m happy that it happened.

I think that, perhaps, the events that transpired last night were needed in order to cleanse me of my arrogance where this place is concerned. Since He died, I’ve forced myself to endure the black night with no fear, when storms took the light away and the darkness was all encompassing and unscathed by manmade light. I have refused fear of the noises and frightening tidbits that He would address for me, when He lived. I have refused to so much as pick up my gun, even when I was certain that trouble lurked somewhere beyond my sight. Last night, I learned that all of these self imposed lessons meant nothing if I allowed my guard to come down; if I failed to respect the truth in the natural world I live in and allow superstition and fear to run their course.

Looking back, I see the pieces of the night and how they fit together to create the sheer terror that I felt. I see the moment in which I gave in to that terror. ‘Fear’ simply does not touch on the extreme emotion that caused my heart to pound, ears ringing from the vantablack horrifica and the unseen weapons it presented and used against me. Yet, with a few hours sleep and the light of day, I feel purged of something…something that I can’t quite put a finger on. I feel clean and solidly at peace with myself. Terror is an all-engaging emotion. It leaves no part of your body, soul or spirit untouched by its power. It’s an internal test of faith and strength and all such things that allow us to walk bravely through this world. Terror will strip you to the bone, deconstructing and rearranging your perception. It is an anesthetic that paralyzes everything strong within you. It is an adversary that you cannot allow to win.

I never missed my beloved desert as much as I did last night. In this place, trees lock you in like prison bars and deny you view of what lies beyond. The desert, a proud and treacherous lady, is still gracious enough to grant you clear view of what might come from miles around. There is more comfort in that than I ever realized. Until last night.

 

a monday evening sing-song

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people gather ’round, like sheep

where bloody, broken bodies keep

laid to rest, beneath our feet…

tell me this, love

tell me true

are you happy now?

what say, you?

do you think  you’ve finally won your race?

did you run it well…keep the pace?

or is your peace tainted by regret?

my love, were you not ready yet?

did the Reaper catch you by surprise?

did he show Himself, or bear disguise?

you must answer, sweet love of mine

for, i fear, that i’ll not have the time

once my own clock starts ticking down

to make my peace ‘fore He comes around

there is much i have not finished yet

’tis too soon for me to go, my pet

but when the day comes that i do

i pray God keep me far from you

now answer my questions

tell me true

what have you to say, love?

what say, you?

666 Memory Lane

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It’s a peaceful morning here, as usual. Miss Cocoa has taken up a spot in the litter box and the girls are outside rolling around and playing in the sunshine. As for me, I’m just smoking and waiting for my pain pills to work so I can clean the kitchen.

I haven’t cleaned since Bennie passed. I keep putting it off, thinking that, if I take his cup off the table by his chair, he’ll be gone for good. But he’s already long gone and I’m being silly. In the back seat of my truck are two large plastic bags, full of the work clothes he took with him when he left for his last job. My brother loaded them up for me when I came home two weeks ago. I need to bring them in and hang them up, wash what needs to be washed, and find someone who could use them. They’re all fire retardant and are very expensive to buy. I know there’s a young hand out there needing work clothes and feel terrible about keeping them. I just don’t want to bring them in. I don’t want to touch them. And I don’t know why.

Life with Bennie was difficult, to say the least. He made sure of it. He cheated on me before our first anniversary, and never stopped. He seemed to enjoy ‘accidentally’ letting me find out. It hurt so much, at first. I thought I’d die, honestly. But, I was busy raising our boys and they worshiped their father, as he did them. I could never justify hurting them by taking them away. I even asked Bennie if he’d keep the boys and let me go. He said there was no way he’d do that. So, I stopped taking his cheating personally and went on with life.

I think what I hated more, much more, than his cheating was his bullying. He hit me a few times over the years, shoved me around, spit in my face. Just bully shit. Once, he got a butcher knife out and I figured I was about to get it. He had it raised over his head and I was just staring at it. I knew that, coming downward that way, it was gonna hurt like a motherfucker. I saw his arm start to move and shut my eyes, but, instead of stabbing me, he brought the knife down and stuck it into the kitchen table. When he did, his hand slid down and it cut the shit out of his hand. I was shocked. He was shocked, too. I grabbed the first aid kit and wrapped his hand up for him. Things were very quiet after that and, a few hours later, we went to his mother’s house for gumbo. The boys were already there, as they spent most weekends with his mother. His whole family was there, as well. They thought the cut was a defensive wound and they were very outspoken about it, even in front of my boys. I couldn’t tell them the truth, so I left.

Looking back, our relationship was very abusive. He knew I loved him with all of my heart, and he used that as a weapon against me. Eventually, I just stopped feeling a lot of things. It’s funny…the things you can get used to just to get by. I really hated the screaming. Bennie would get so angry that his face would turn red and he’d shake. He’d get right in my face, almost touching nose to nose, and he’d scream at the top of his lungs calling me every name he could think of. I was raised in a violent home, so it probably never bothered me as much as it should have. I had no natural fear of violence…still don’t…so I’d just sit perfectly still and zone out while he screamed. Spitting in my face was always the grand finale. I knew that, if I had moved an inch, he would have beaten my ass, so I almost feel fortunate that I was raised the way I was.

There is so much more to recall about that man. Things I don’t want to recall. I guess that I need to accept that he never loved me like I loved him, even in the end. One of the last text messages he sent was to a woman who he’d been seeing off and on throughout our marriage, long before we were separated. She wanted him to leave me and be with her. He told her that he couldn’t, or I’d get half of everything. The thing is, we were going to hire surveyors to split this land in half after he got off of this job, but I told him that I’d be fine with the back eight acres and a tiny house. That parcel is on a separate deed and he could just do a family sale to me. Done deal. That was the plan. He got everything but just one little bit. He’d have lost virtually nothing.

Bennie passed on a Friday, so it was the following business day, Monday, before I could do anything like an obituary. I went on his FB and let his friends and relations know what had happened. The next day, I checked his FB and the woman I mentioned had posted some pretty harsh things about me not caring enough to get an obit done. I messaged her, reminding her that I couldn’t take care of that over the weekend, but that I was getting it done that day. She messaged me back telling me how miserable Bennie was and that is why he died. She said he worried too much about supporting me and, were it not for that, he’d be alive. I told her that wasn’t true, but she wouldn’t hear of it. She said she knew A LOT about our marriage. I informed her that she knew what he wanted her to know. I also let her know that for five years, he’d been free to live with her, date her, whatever he wanted, without any reprisal from me because we’d been separated all of that time. Yep…I guess ol Bennie failed to mention that to her. I haven’t heard from her since then. Score!

Well, I’m gonna wrap up this lil walk down Memory Lane. I don’t like to speak ill of the dead, but I really need to get some perspective on who I’m crying over. Bennie was my own personal pain machine. It ran all the time. I went dry inside keeping it fueled. That’s the man I have been married to for the last twenty years. That’s why I feel empty inside. Not because he’s gone, but because the part of me he killed off left a hole inside of me that is no longer filled by the daily pain of living with him. I always say he was my best friend. In many ways, he was. But in more ways than that, he was anything but a friend. Maybe I need to remember THAT.