Ties.

The broken, even those like me who have a very limited family to choose from, come back to our blood when we can. I have shared every year how hard the holidays are on me – and how I feel as if I have only barely recovered from one holiday’s wounds before it’s already Christmastime again. Admittedly, this year isn’t as bad as the stack of years leading up to it, somehow – likely because of the changes that have taken, and continue to take effect on my own psyche, I know…but, the overall emptiness and hollowed out feeling remains, in spite of the beginning of my own process of letting go of any former (and completely futile) expectations, hopes and/or goals in regard to my child, my own identity, and the future in general.

I’ve also written about my family a lot: my clan of older brothers, still living – my single younger brother, long dead. I have written about the two separate sets of kids that my father reared: THE ORIGINALS (the older set of four boys) and THE NON-ORIGINALS (the younger set of two boys and myself); my family structure growing up was odd, at best…but very close knit, in spite of such a wide-ranging collection. During childhood, I was closest to the baby, JJ, who committed suicide very young; and also with my very oldest brother, German, who is old enough to be my (young) father. The rest of my brothers and I have always missed that certain “connection”, for lack of a better term.

Nate, who is right above me in age (19 months older) and the first born of the NON-ORIGINALS, is very different from me in every way possible, as was he from JJ. Our childhoods kept us close but as soon as we began to grow up and foster our own personalities, Nate decided that he no longer cared too much for us. His high IQ and exquisite intelligence always alienated us; his introverted and anti-social persona didn’t help. After our father died, and our family was split up and separated permanently, the only one that I remained in daily contact with was JJ because we were kept together for a time. I found out after his death that Nathan had specifically asked to placed somewhere separately from us, and this morsel of information literally felt as if it had broken my spirit somehow for years, afterward.

Through my discovery of such a painful truth, Nate had made himself dead to me as well; I didn’t even count him as part of my family for almost a decade. It was ice between us. When I was recovering from the attempt on my life by the Ripper and all that drama, he never even checked on me once – never asked about me – basically it seemed that I was dead to him, in turn. When I came home, however, and he saw that I meant business in my own recovery and rehabilitation (my life prior to that was spent as a hostage to a psychopathic husband), he flipped a switch and became my staunchest ally, nearly overnight. He has gotten married and become a father since then; he seems to love me more as a result of those things, somehow.

His first-born, three-year-old “Cay-Cay”, is truly saving my life these days; giving me a spiritual renewal that I couldn’t (and wouldn’t) have thought possible at such an emotionally defeated time for me, reminding me that I am still worth something to at least one young, formidable soul out there. Her fierce and unwavering love for me has been like a lifeboat in the darkest swells of a lifetime. And, beneath it all, I have this sense of my brother’s love, too. He has been almost forceful with maintaining such an exceptional bond between she and I since the moment she was born, even before my life fell the rest of the way to shambles, it’s like he sensed the need somehow. He foresaw things that I was blind to seeing and successfully created a kind of safety net of emotional/spiritual fulfillment for me, just in case.

Of course, as with most things in life, these are things that are only just now becoming apparent to me – but I do recognize them. And there are not words to express the ton-of-bricks I am buried beneath when it comes to feeling grateful to him for it.

Ten Far-Reaching Notions of Gratitude on “Thanksgiving”.

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  1. Today, I am grateful that I am not a Republican.
  2. I am equally as thankful for not being a Democrat.
  3. Today, I feel gratitude towards my home and hearth; however, I will add that EVERYDAY holds sentiment for me – the roof over my head is something I do not allow myself to take for granted in any context.
  4. Today, I am glad to be a pothead, and feel thankful for the plentiful reaping of many crops this year, despite the seemingly perpetual amounts of labor attached to them.
  5. Today, I am thankful to have the double-edged ability to “dissociate” and/or “detach” from emotional torment or torture, as the holidays unfailingly suck worse than any time of any year for me, this year being no exception.
  6. Tomorrow, I will go to the Sempers and chop a beautiful tree that will enrich my home and hearth with its beautiful presence for the next 35 or so days, and I love trees so I am grateful for that.
  7. Although at this particular moment in time, I feel thoroughly perplexed by BOTH of roommates, at the end of the day I am grateful for each in his own, totally unique and irreplaceable way…an element in life that is not lost in me, as I have lived with some truly horrible people in the past, so I can appreciate and be thankful for that, too.
  8. My mother was not shot by some psychopath with a gun as a clueless, neighboring bystander to a recent tragedy.
  9. My father is recovering from his near-fatal beating considerably well, despite the continued vision problems.
  10. I have my freedom to be loser fuck-up with no motivation, direction, or driving force because I am a fucking “Muuurcan” (American).

Happy No-Donner-For-Dinner Day, Y’all.

Sunday Night Smoothies.

Sometimes it’s easy for me to lose sight of my blessings in life – because I often feel so very overwhelmed by so much bad; and that’s not cool…
“Home is where the Heart is.”
I have seen and heard this saying my entire life: my grandmother kept a little hand stitched pillow that sported it, my Papa used to say it – followed by a huge sigh of relief – every time he returned from having traveled abroad, I’ve received countless greeting cards donning the sentiment across a cabin-esque scene in the woods…yes, home is, indeed, where the heart is.
For all the years after I recovered from surgery and the shock of my former marriage and its ending, I had no home – despite never having been homeless. I was like the pity-pot anywhere I hung my hat for a while, like a patient who everyone thought to be too fragile to live at all. That was uncomfortable and altered the ways that I perceived the world around me, I’m sure.
I rushed through Physical Therapy and Reconstructive Skin Grafting in order to be able to live on my own with Boo finally – a piece of my timeline that is one, big blur of doctor’s offices, pharmacies and Staph Infections in my memory. When I was able to move out to a place of our own, it was located in the ghetto that I grew up in – an element that actually brought me comfort and a sense of comfort, somehow. Nobody else approved of my decision though, nobody felt like I was stable enough physically or psychologically to be doing the single mom thing in the Hood.
I didn’t give a fuck what anyone else thought – I was hungry to begin my own independent life’s new story at that point in time – I was excited to experience anything on my own and without the fear and dread that I had previously lived every moment inside of. Boo thrived as well, though admittedly it was a ‘round the clock’ job and brought on a whole new appreciation of single motherhood quite rapidly. I dove into Boo – to her class activities – to the PTA at her school – to her entire existence, anew. Those were the best years that Boo and I had together: the ones leading up to her eventual arrest and first court initiation into “treatment” for her increasing behavioral issues. A lot went on for both of us in growth and discovery – and I feel like I made the very best of as much of it as I could…I harbor little regret against that period of time, and will always treasure the memories of getting to be her Mom, as short-lived as it was. After she was gone, I became rapidly unstable and even suicidal/homicidal before ultimately finding my own way into legal trouble and serious mental relapse. It was after my release from jail for being found in repeated ‘Contempt of Court’, that I decided living alone wasn’t the best option for me any longer – and chose to do the roommate thing.
I went through slews of horribly strange and even dangerous situations for about three years before a longtime friend (Dice, my current roommate) said he had a room for rent in his home. Of course, I jumped on it and even forfeited the first, last and deposit I had invested in the apartment I was renting alone before coming here in order to be here – I knew it was a blessing at the time – and I still know it was a blessing, to date. It was.
Evenings like this one, which include BBQ, mashed potatoes, Vikings on the obnoxiously huge flat-screen in the man cave, real fruit smoothies for dessert, good conversation, kind weed, and a generally easy-going mood…well, to put it simply:
These are the times when I am so very grateful to have a home.
To have a place that I feel safe and secure.
To have a house mate that isn’t a psychopath or out of control asshole;
someone who puts up with CPTSD bullshit and accepts me as I am…
This is all shit that I can’t allow myself to ever take for granted, personally. It means too much.

VETERAN’S DAY REPOST: The Wise of The Skies

My Papa (age 20). Already a pilot headed to War...

My Papa (age 20). Already a pilot headed to War…

 

It seems as though my very genetic sequencing was created on a battlefield somewhere back in time.
On the one hand (my father’s side, and the side of the family in which I was exposed to daily), my Old School Yankee blood hammers a foothold of ingenuity and aggression embedded in my very DNA. My Danish Emigrant family is littered with highly decorated American War Heroes in each and every generation that I know of, including my daughter’s generation. This side of my heritage historically and willingly puts up a well-organized and strategic fight for the glories it claims, no doubt. This side of my family tree is dwarfed in numbers by my mother’s side; and unfortunately, I believe that is because I have lost too many relatives, both distant and close, to warfare.
My Papa (my Dad’s father, who was my Partner in Crime until the day he died about a decade ago) doubled as my daycare provider since I can remember. This was a guy who was, indeed, a War Hero of at least two major wars in world history, a pilot (and it takes a certain kind for this), a Rosicrucian, a Mason, a self-taught Ancient Egyptologist (because he was compelled to explore alchemy, physics, astronomy, astrology, medicinal tincturing and ancient mysticism since his youth), but most notably and memorably for me: he was a magically wise soul. He was a genuine human being. He was one of my favorite people to hang out with for the entirety of my young life, even when I was a shithead teenager with a pierced face and old English block lettering Tattoos that said distasteful things – he never got boring or became too demanding of my time; my time was something that I always had more than enough for him.
I can write this, because he is dead and I am grown now;
During my teen years, he once rendezvoused with me at my car on the side of a dirt road during the wee hours of the morning (during a period in my life when I was swirling around life’s drain amidst teen angst, the shock and trauma of my Dad’s very sudden death, and in turn – the absolute demolition of my family unit as I had always before, and never again – known it; and was out of control in behavior and illegal activities) to offload armfuls of (totally illegal and extremely questionable in his perception) firearms with a stiff lip and stoic expression on his face the entire time. He drove away with at least ten felonies in his hatchback Celica without saying a fucking word to me about it.
I could never tell anyone about it growing up – couldn’t brag about it to my friends or brothers – because the fact that he never said anything taught me the lesson I’m sure he was shooting for: shame in grace, wrong against right, and dedication to those we love. I held it in for about five years before finally breaking one day over a Scrabble match and blurting out something like, “Papa, you know I’d NEVER ask you to do anything bad for me again EVER, right?…”
My Papa and I have the exact, same mischievously set eyes; upon meeting his gaze, I was always instantly triggered to smile, laugh, or giggle. This time though, when his eyes met mine, they spoke volumes of the disapproval and disappointment that he had been holding in all that time. Also quite noticeably though, was a weight that seemed to lift from his frame almost tangibly…and it came straight into my heart and has been with me ever since that moment.

For Veteran’s Day, I bow my head to any and all who have served my country in my place for whatever reasons.

This gratefulness that I feel runs deeply through the tangling roots of dead soldiers grown from my own family tree, and any other tree on Yankee/ Native soil. It most certainly takes someone with heart to be a soldier; thank you to all of the Veterans out there who may happen to read this post. Seriously…THANK YOU.

Gratitude.

 

the creature n me

A while ago, I made a decision to open my heart to a new person who’d come along and crossed paths with me in Life; and surprisingly, it’s been a decision that hasn’t yet bitten me in my hand.

 

The past four or five months have been a tornado of happenings here:

More pretenders and opportunistic mutants

More lies and deceit

More injustice and less answers for it

More questions surrounding everyone I know (or thought I did)

More painful recovery processes

More thoughts and fears

More disillusion

More abandonment

More mistaken identities

 

Through it all, I have had a steadfast ally at my side – this orphaned spirit that I decided to adopt into my family; a person who has taught me so much without intending to teach me a thing – a person whose very existence has been an anchor lately for me, to a previously untouched – more meaningful side of Life.

People say that our circumstance is crazy, that our bond is “insane, at its best”; my friends have all reminded me of the chances I’m taking with a ‘stranger’ from far away becoming so close in the cramped quarters of my limited world…of course, that had been the thing that caused me to jump into my new friendship head first like I did – don’t tell me NOT to do anything.

Upon first meeting the orphan, I was stricken by the sheer amount of loyalty and sincerity that seemed to ooze from his body; by the reluctance to let go of his own hope in his own way; his headstrong disposition sets him apart immediately from anyone with a pair of broken wings. His heart has been trampled and continues to be kicked from one side of the floor to the other in a volley of deeply entrenched deceitfulness and shocking cruelty; yet, he still smiles…somehow.

His former life was drained of its former goals and plans; and the future he had invested so completely in has been stripped right from his stubborn hands; he has been like an island growing out of the black, cold sea in the middle of nowhere to offer a form of relief and reprieve to a weary pirate driving a jacked vessel.

He’s lied down and said fuck it; then got back up and said he didn’t mean that.

Instead of becoming the shitty, embittered spirit that I embody, he doesn’t fall in line with the grief – he masters something new. He renews his sense of ability in whatever context he can, which is amazing and inspiring to me.

Overall, he has been one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

He hasn’t let me down like I’ve been expecting him to do; and I am so very grateful for his friendship now. I wish him all of the healing and strength in this world.

In the end, it’s kinda funny how when we think we are opening up a wing for someone else to climb underneath, the orphan scampering into the offered space doesn’t necessarily come empty-handed.

 

Damn Us.

damn us

A Rare Balancing Act

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Today’s a day that the truth doesn’t hurt as much as it usually does – the sun has been high and hot today – blue skies – green trees. It’s been a day that I have felt victorious over my issues with my BAD roommate, a day that’s felt like it will be simple to move on past the plethora of things that define my disgust with my life and the people in (and NOT in) it. I don’t know if this is a form of denial or a coping mechanism I use in order to NOT spontaneously explode – or if it’s what my shrink calls “bi-polar disorder attached to the good ol’ PTSD”; all I can say is that when I wake up in the morning – every morning, any morning – I don’t ever know if today’s gonna be the day that I finally lose my mind and do something absolutely fucking astounding in its sheer stupidity, or – if it might be the day that I wash out enough nuggets of gold to buy my way into a residential library somewhere. My health has been compromised again lately, I’ve been emotionally and physically exhausted and spent, I hit a pretty low point last week as a result of the bullshit going on with the BAD roommate.

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Sucks to be him – he’s made his bed…night night, now Simple One….

 

YESTERDAY THOUGH, something happened that doesn’t happen to me – in my life, in my experience with other humans…and I am wanting to get on my podium about the GOOD as well as the many negative posts I’ve been making.

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The “bad” has been (for one of the only times ever) countered with the “good” in my “big picture” of life, it seems. My GOOD roommate has once more shown his true colors to me this past week: extending his truly innate kindness to me for no reason outside of being himself, doing what he does – being a very exceptional human being (when circumstances like to his own experience in life don’t typically produce kind-heated and giving grown men as a result). His humanity never ceases to amaze me somehow, and I count him as one of my biggest blessings in adult life, truly. He’s been a friend for a long time, much longer than the time we’ve been roommates – and he has ALWAYS shown me the utmost faith and support since long before he ever had any true purpose to do so. I so appreciate him as a support beam of my structure, and yet he is unaware of how deeply he has affected me with his nature and his shockingly refreshing broken mold.

 

Anyway, it’s these VERY FEW AND FAR BETWEEN instances in which another human being displays unselfishness without being prompted to do so by any other outside force, that keep me believing that my own kind nature and built-in empathy will one day be my salvation somehow – as opposed to what it’s been so far: a crippling handicap. There’s hope that it might pay off for me one day – to remain steadfast in my role as genuine and decent human being.