My Kid.

Overdosed again.

She is alive, but in ICU again.

There truly can’t be anything more emotionally painful or spiritually murderous than to live in this particular realm of Limbo; where the knowledge of so much misery and ruin of my only (though completely estranged) child is permanent. 

Sleeper.

I see the familiar namesake,

it’s held close to the core of my being,

I feel the familiar heartache,

as I walk closer to this namesake I see;

there are feelings tugging inside of me,

laughter – tears – pure tragedy,

I whisper hello and sit down beside,

the headstone I’m reading with pride;

I hate to come to this place of despair,

but long to somehow feel somewhat near,

to the brother I once buried here,

to the one who’s death lingers so vividly,

imparted onto the soul of me,

imprinted into my darkest memories,

impressed upon my happiest childhood scenes;

and here, is where you now remain,

a headstone lettered by your name,

without mention of what your life could’ve been,

without question that you’ll stay in this place;

I see a young smile, missing front teeth,

a 5th grader with double-scraped knees,

a handsome teenager too timid to speak,

my fiercest protector on the neighborhood streets,

but the thing I can’t shake from my mind,

is how you opted to leave me wondering why,

cursing myself through the sleepless nights,

for the way you ended your tender life.

 

The Webs We Weave.

PTSD: (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)
Noun:
An anxiety disorder associated with serious traumatic events and characterized by such symptoms as (but not limited to):
Survivor guilt,
Reliving the trauma in dreams,
Numbness and lack of involvement with reality,
Recurrent mood-altering thoughts and/or images; or
the recurrent and persistent memories and recollections of a traumatic event or experience.

 

Given a duly noted “predisposition” of mental instability attached to my very conception since before my birth (my mother was a severely unstable, drug-addicted, drunken Shawnee Native; who was also at the time, an untreated schizophrenic when she gave birth to me in 1979), I believe my father and brothers expected a deficiency just as severe from me, someday. I have somehow always harbored – what was for a long time: an unidentified – fear of growing up into a raving, schizophrenic drunk just like the estranged and frightening mother from my childhood. Very regularly during preadolescence, I pattern-dreamed (a Shawnee term used to describe the attachment of one’s sub-consciousness to another’s through dreamscape – away from the waking world as we know it) about my elusive and unpredictable mother.

 

I was always a yearling again – wearing a soggy diaper, behind the lovingly hand-crafted bars of a wooden crib – alone in a warm and sunlit  bedroom; and I am crying my little  heart out for someone to open the door and come for me, to hear me. Hours seemed to pass this way in the dream; nobody would come for what felt like days, maybe weeks –to a youngster ‘s warped perception of time…and then, SHE opens the door and stands there in the shadow cast by the hallway bulb – its grayness seeming to wash out any color as it beams down around her like a canister of smoke; I begin to cry again – loudly and more boisterously as to be noticed by her, I’m unafraid of her presence in the dream; I see her as my “savior” in my current-day recollections of its detail, I want her to come in and pick me up – I want her to hold me and clean me up and spend time with me. I don’t want to be alone and crying in this room any longer and she is my ticket out of there. I start screaming her;

MamaMama!

 

I swallow small gulps of my own snot and tears in the process; I’m so desperate to catch her attention.

 

 “Mama!!!”

 

She turns to her left and leaves without a care in the world. It was also during preadolescence, I should note here, that my father decided to spill the truth behind a strain in their relationship that obviously went beyond the differences they blamed for their divorce: this was the life-altering morsel that my mother had tried to “smother” me with my own pillow when I was an infant, still in a crib. Needless to say, this spun my world around a few times before throwing it off kilter for a few rounds, too; I was really caught off guard by this confession by my Dad, and it explained countless trifles of my existence – this horrible little truth. I wondered who else knew. My father assured me that only “the Originals”, meaning my older “set” of brothers (typically referred to as “the Originals” in my writing), and my Papa (my Dad’s father) knew about the incident.

Umokay, so you mean my Moms not only crazy as Hell, but she actually tried to off me when I was too little to defend myself?!God damn!!!

That was an eye-opener for me at the pliable age of eleven…it hurt deeply to learn, and never quite allowed Life to feel the same again after knowing it. It wasn’t until I was at least sixteen, and still trying desperately in vain to keep my baby brother (who later committed suicide) from falling mentally apart as a result of the same kind of schizophrenia that afflicts my mother, that the question hit me like a ton of bricks:

 

Why in the Hell did my father get my mother pregnant and have yet ANOTHER child, with a woman who had been put in psychiatric detention and treated for the attempted smothering of the most recent child that she bore him?

 

Of course, my father had passed away by that time, as the story goes; and I never got the answer from HIS mouth on that lingering query of mine. I have come to harbor rather strong beliefs about the intrinsic “rights” of certain women to bear children; I do not believe it is fair for those who are historically mentally unstable to pro-create as freely as those who have not shown any repeated inconsistencies in sound thinking and behaviors. Such instances create humans like me, or my late, little brother – or, the older one in my set of full-blooded siblings – we’re all challenged in some majorly handicapping way when it comes to social behaviors and/or mental illness. I’m still shocked that it was my baby brother and not me who ended up with schizophrenia as a very young adult.

I waited…and waited…and waited – waited to one day wake up and be “crazy” like my mom or just downright miserable and confused, afraid and aimless like my little brother had become. My brother was the natural kicking post in my family (natural to the Originals, at least) because he was the last in line, of a long line of boys (with the one exception of me) who are Scandinavian and Native-American by heritage and behaved much like a clan of cavemen, given the absence of any adult female in our household. I was the only one there to protect my little brother for, well – forever, since I can remember remembering. I was the only buffer between them and him, and I innately sensed a dire need to execute my power in this position day and night, all the time.  He was a sensitive spirit: quiet and observant; wise and very deep thinking; a true empath just the way that I am, too. Despite the fond recollections I have surrounding my childhood, the flip-side of it is that it was filled with the constant stress of worrying over my little brother’s well-being.This lasted until the moment he committed suicide in 1999, at age 19.

I begrudgingly buried JJ while I was still a domestic hostage to “the Ripper”, never really being able to openly or worthily mourn his tragic ending because “the Ripper” would become enraged by jealousy if I showed any sign of emotion for anyone other than Him. It was one of the very darkest periods of my existence, to my recollections…a very, deeply guilt-ridden and sad time for me.

Sometimes still, I catch myself pondering things that do not matter anymore, anyway; I often wonder if JJ ever used to have recurring dreams about our Mom turning her back on him, also.

 

IMPORTANT NOTE:

I am currently in my umpteenth attempt at making my own amends to, and forgiving past discrepancies of:

Our full-blooded Shawnee, medicated, therapy-involved, clean and sober Mother.

Holding.

I can still surely say,

I won’t let you fade,

I still tearfully celebrate,

the anniversary,

your former birthday;

bless that day you came,

and changed everything,

a little, blue bundle,

so similar to me;

barely junior to me,

by just thirteen months,

arriving epically,

to button our family up,

you were technically,

the reason, meaningfully,

each day that I’d wake up,

and everybody noticed,

the natural bond between us;

years and experience,

were hardest on you,

your mind was too fragile,

your heart was too huge,

and, regretfully

I failed to see,

the toll it took on you,

and when I blinked my eyes,

you were bigger than I,

and just as intelligent, too;

there remains,

in my heart – a pang,

words still lingering,

from our childhood days,

we used to complain,

and each would convey,

how we hated sharing,

a birthday party;

as so very few,

between 25 and 22,

they always killed both birdies,

through ONE party that they threw;

I know you never meant it,

I continue to pray,

that you knew the same,

if I could have you back again,

I’d give up my birthdays,

without the slightest hesitation,

to see your face again,

to bring you medicine,

whatever situation,

I might have you in;

we were so, considered,

just like a set of twins,

we had something special,

something better,

born in Forever,

part of who I am;

I know you’d,

surely understand,

why I’ve become,

this thing that I am,

and these days,

a “birthday”,

only stands to represent,

another wound,

another loss,

another failure,

another painful regret.

today would be that party,

that you and me,

always hated to share,

and let me tell you,

I would sit happily,

without a word,

Gods willing,

bone-chilling,

you were here.

 

 

 

 

 

Cruel and Hard Truths.

Life is cruel in this way; I know…we each play the worst of mind games with ourselves throughout its course of time with us; we each self-fulfill handfuls of silent prophesies made; we each destroy what we love and strive hard to perfect. We each suffer the toxic illness known as The Self; and, we each inevitably become something that we never wanted to be. We each take it all for granted, every last bit of it…and we each remain blind to the ways in which The Self evolves the victim into the victimizer in order to survive another year here.
We pretend that the ways we “grow” to become better with age aren’t full-blown warped to the core: better hunters, gatherers, collectors, owners, and so on… we pretend that Life and its tragedies do not mar us; that these things don’t mold us into creatures much like everyone else – rendering indifference and ambiguity in the most raw manifestations…we pretend that we know…anything about anything at all…but, we are each just as vulnerable and naïve as the other.
I have spent my own years alive in doing these things; wasted all of the meaningful and important formidable times of my youth in believing.
I carried it around with me like a sales kiosk in a mall: always there and open to sell – but never paid much attention to by anyone who matters. I kept telling myself things that were totally fabricated just to drag myself through to the other side of another New Year’s celebration or birthday party; basically been lying to myself about very important elements in Life for as long as I have been an adult; because if I hadn’t, I would have seen the folly of my own existence with clarity early on and likely just pulled the plug. Had I been enlightened throughout the years of my youth as I have become since that time, I truly might have beat my little brother in the race to commit suicide. It is because of the knowledge I have collected as an adult, as a mom, and as a grown up human being, that I can fully comprehend (and thoroughly forgive) my brother for his decision to end his own life so young and tragically.
JJ had never been able to feed himself such lies about his own existence and what it all lead up to for him; he had never been able to convince himself that our Mom actually did love him, or that his very being was not unwanted or regrettable, in reality – not any more than any of the rest of us, at least. He somehow managed to make it all the way to age 19 without any self-comforting delusions before finally allowing the ton of bricks to land on him (a feat that often leaves me dumbfounded, in its own right); he accepted his own reality as it had seemed to have come to him during infancy and just kept on until he had enough and ceased to move on.
These days, given all that’s happened with my own irreparably damaged child, it’s so much easier for me to understand where he was coming from and how he had reached that point; experience has helped me to recognize things as they are/were when it comes to the choice he made to kill himself like he did – he always used to ask me things at night when we were falling asleep like,
“Do you think that when Mama does come back, she will still remember me?”
or
“What did I do to make Mama go?”
As the youngest and the last to be born to our often violent, highly unstable and ever-intoxicated mother, of course he took her absence very personally from the moment he became aware of it. I, on the other hand, did not seem to be affected so much by it back in those days; at least, not in any apparent or obvious way. I used to feel puzzled by his constant neediness for her, the incessant questioning and quizzing about her nature and/or appearance, and most memorably: this urgency that seemed to be hardwired into his heart and brain to reunite with her before he lost the chance. During our childhood, all JJ ever wanted for Christmas was our mom to come…he never stopped crying for her at night when he had nightmares or when he was injured at play; he never stopped dreaming like little Orphan Annie about the sun coming up tomorrow and finally shining onto his face. He also never stopped being disappointed and heartbroken; his entire world must have felt like it was on hold all the time; his little face would just light right up when he thought he saw her, or heard her voice – even if he heard someone else say er name out loud…he just wanted her so badly.
“Mama’s not gone, J…she’s just away ‘til she gets better.”
I used to say this to him often, as it had repeatedly been said to me by my older brothers or dad; I never believed in my heart that she would be coming back, though – not sure why – but, I never held on to that notion at all.
Last night I was reading through some old family stuff and something seemed to drop into my heart like a fucking lead ball from out of nowhere:
Although I might not have been at all aware of it (or affected by it in the same ways as it affected JJ), these abandonment issues I harbor did not show up in my adult life; they have been there always – and have been warped and shaped over time and by my own experiences with my mom, my late dad, and late little brother. I thought last night for some reason about my mother passing away, and how that would leave me feeling, all things considered. I can say that the emotional tidal wave that followed such thoughts was quite surprising and unexpected for me, as I failed to form the attachments to her that are necessary to feel such emotional lows…or, so I thought. Then, the thought struck me of how it would be between my step-dad and me if my mom were to pass away before him; and, I was truly terrified beyond words by the possibility of that tie being severed completely through her death.
In short, it occurred to me last night just how much I have allowed myself to bond to my recovering and medicated mother in the years I’ve been trying, despite my own inability to perceive such things as they present themselves from one day to the next. I’ve always held so much resentment and blame and anger towards her as a result of JJ’s suicide that I guess I didn’t even notice those things as they began to fade and be replaced by forgiveness and understanding; Life is cruel that way…

Comms Check 2.

Boo is in ICU again; she was found last Wednesday unresponsive and alone on the track in Oakland…she went for an unknown amount of time without air to her brain…she is on life support: a breathing machine, feeding tube etc. Her outlook is not good. Things are not good.
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Ripples.

Ripples..