I stayed up all night, anxiety gripping me tightly, whispering, “You have to go to therapy at one.” in a rough, cigarette-harshened growl.

My therapist is nice. I don’t know why I am worried. Except that I’m always worried. It’s habit, superstition, and duty all rolled into one. Like, if I let go, and just let what comes come, I would surely die. Death is something that I’m always terrified will happen when I least expect it. Be prepared for the worst so it will never show up and make a fool of me.

Know what the worst thing is about sitting up all night grinding my teeth and listening to The Art of Asking? I checked my calendar and my appointment is TOMORROW. Yep. Pointless anxiety.

I tried to get all worried about Saturday, about the birthday party. But at five am it hit me- I’m not really worried. Not because I think it will be good. I couldn’t place why at first, poking and prodding at the possibility.  Two truths came. Alicia would have at least mentioned, “Hey, just so you know, they’ll be here.” She’s known me long enough to understand that I’d need to be prepared, or even choose not to go.

Which led to the truth i didn’t want to face. The reason I always dreaded the end. The reason I took every moment he offered. When it’s over, it is forever ended. He won’t call. He won’t write. He won’t wonder about me. He wouldn’t put himself in the position of facing me after everything he did. He’s not the hero in my tale. He’s just a man. And he’s a coward.

It was hard to face. Which is why I’m still mulling over it five hours later. I’ve made him the hero who was led astray, and I’ve made myself the villain who has to pay for all the evil temptations. Both the Serpent and Eve and Lillith all at the same time, and he, Adam, trusting, pure, better. He the Light and me the Magdalen, the whore he was kind to.

It’s a fucked up kind of narcissism.  And it’s so hard to get out of that way of thinking. That’s the way I’ve always thought. In all conflict, I am wrong.

How do you rewire 36 years of automatic thought?



If it weren’t for bad news…

My brother’s son is 4 years old. Mean like all country boys, but excited about everything and fearless. Bobby’s mamaw took custody of him because my little brother made some very stupid decisions and was in timeout for a couple of years.

Mom calls down there all the time.

Today, mom got a call from Dote (short for Gladotia, and yes that’s a real name…) and told her that James was at Vanderbilt (huge hospital in Nashville, a few hours away) because he’d gotten burnt and needed skin grafts.

Mom had talked to Bob twice and never heard this. Bobby and Brandy even messaged with Kiera yesterday and noone said a word. Mom was indignant and upset and angry that they took so long to tell her.

It never occurred to her that the only person who bothered to tell me was her, and that’s only in afterthought.

“Anyway, now, it don’t seem right. He’s in there while you’re on the outside.”

Anyway… Thats just the little girl in me feeling worthless. That’s not even the only awful thing from this past week, but right now I can’t talk about the other one.

When the fuck is April going to be over???

If Only I Were Still Plugged In

I have long rambling conversations with myself in my head. I’m clear and eloquent and passionate.

Then I sit up and try to translate it onto the website, or on paper, and it all falls apart. My hands can’t keep up with the words pouring through my thoughts.

I’m lost in my own mind.

I try to talk eloquently on here, but it always breaks down in the process. I want t o give anecdotes, or maybe even some insightful little blurbs, but it always turns into this rambling sprawling jumble of bitterness and regret.

I’d like to tell stories, instead of just escaping to whine on here when I have a breakdown. Maybe I can start doing that. Once a week. Pick a memory and just lay it bare.

These thoughts are coming from listening to Just a Geek by Wil Wheaton.

I have been a fan of him since I saw Stand By Me in seventh grade. In fact, wanting to see more of his work is what started me on St:TNG in the first place. I have never understood the whole Wesley animosity. See, I was a kid who was smarter than all the adults around me too, so in Wes I saw all my own possibilities. And I still have that feeling of “He’s just like me,” even now, with the actor himself  as I listen to him detailing the highs and lows of his life as he struggled with anxiety and self-doubt and trying to find his place in a world who hadn’t caught up with his awesomeness.

I now want to say “Not that I’m saying that I’m awesome too,” hiding myself behind dissembling and waving hands.

But the thing is… I’m not a bad person. I’m preoccupied, depressed, anxious, and totally out of shape, but that’s not the whole me. I’m also funny, enthusiastic about things I enjoy (when depression hasn’t sapped me dry), and kind.

Nathan and I were talking the other day, and he said that people like me more. And I stopped. “Nate, it isn’t that I’m more likeable,” I told him, “I just work my ass off trying to be what they want and expect me to be. It’s definitely not easy. It’s fucking exhausting, and I have no idea how to just relax and just BE.”It’s the truth. And it’s exhausting and sometimes miserable, and I even do it with people I can’t stand and if I were anyone else I wouldn’t give a crap about what they thought of me, but I can’t not do it.

There was another thought that ran through my head, but by the time I finished with the last paragraph it had already swam away and I have no idea what it was.

Time to wrangle the kids up, then sleep for a bit. Maybe I’ll have a good dream. One good dream?

McDreamy part two

There were parallels. Between Meredith and me, Derek and him. I’d laughingly call myself his dirty mistress, and he’d give me that look. The beautiful soulful blue-eyed look with the crinkled edges that Derek would give her. The one that said, “I see you. I see your scars and you’re beautiful because they are there.”

Meredith got her happy ending. Even broken and damaged, all the fights and heartache because of him, in the end they got their post-it wedding and kids and the house and all the misery was gone and he finally realized he was the one who needed her.

And I thought, “That is us in an alternate universe. Somewhere else these things worked out and another me has her happy ending.

But now McDreamy is dead. All the struggle and hurt and love. Gone. Never to come back. McDreamy is dead and now I am alone in two worlds. He’s not dead, but he’s never coming back.

It was a sneaky way of keeping hope. A stupid half-thought that I counted on to not face the reality. But now it’s over. It’s over because my half-thought of hope was taken away. He’s not dead like thecharqcter, but now the hole will be there. Even going back and rewatchibg, I’ll know and it will taint the joy that I imagine, just like the way memories become tarnished by betrayal.

“The carousel never stops turning.”

Now waking up, the hole is there. Will always be there. But I have to get up. I have to eat. I have to take care of my daughters, and I have to be a daughter, a mother, a niece, a friend. Even with a person shaped hole. I knew this. But now I feel it completely. The fiction of two characters has made me feel my own loss and showed me that the hope wasn’t dead no matter how much I said it was, because now I see the truth of the feeling. I can’t hide from reality even though I want to. I have to keep moving because if I don’t it will consume me.

I don’t even want hope. I can’t bear the loss again.

And Emma’s birthday party is the second and he and she might be there. I dont want to see. But I can’t let it punish my kids or Emma or Alicia by not going.

I don’t know what comes next.

My McDreamy

I cried today. For a stupid tv show. But not just that.

The reality hit me.

The last hope is gone. McDreamy is dead and if McDreamy is dead then you’re really really gone.

Sorry. I just had a complete breakdown. 
I’m going to have to do this later. If I can.

Rainy Day Promises

There are people who have it worse than me.

That’s what someone says when they think you’re just feeling sorry for yourself. And it’s true. There are baby girls in China and children in warzones and homeless in New York and so many other people who are suffering in ways I can’t even imagine.

But the thing is, I’m not any of those people. I’m me. I am living my life with all its misery and it is intolerable. I am trapped in this body with this mother and this history and I have tried to make a life but every step forward the floor is crumbling beneath me. I have no control, and when I try to take control someone completely ruins it and I’m back in the ditch where I belong.

I don’t trust. Every promise is just someone stalling. If someone says “I’m going to -” I immediately think “Lies.” Noone ever does what their “going to” do. When I was a kid, my brother’s dad would promise to fix things on a rainy day, because he had to work all the time otherwise. But the rainy day would never come, because when he was off he was up the hill at his parents, or at his brother’s and the rainy day promises were left to fall apart.

It’s depressing how many broken promises start out that way. And they’re often unprovoked. Someone will be all “I’m going to do this for you.” And I know that it’ll never happen. Even if i say it, because my life isn’t in my control so I can’t keep my word even if I plan and fight and scream and work at it. And then I’m unreliable and I lose friends and I’m left alone with only him and then he gets his way and I am left with nothing.  Promises are never made to be kept.

I want out of my life. I want out of my skin. I am never going to have a real life and I’m so tired now. He’s got his headset on and applying for jobs and crying, and I can’t say anything. If I do he’ll mindwarp me and confuse me when he needs to help. Nathan is supposed to be helping me, that’s why he’s here, but he doesn’t until I beg him and we fight and he completely screws everything up and he’s only applying as some weird form of payback. I am sitting on my couch and the girls are upstairs doing a project and my cousin is watching some shark horror movie and I feel so sick and alone

Genetic Disposition to Pariahism

I dreamed about him. I dreamed that things were as they are now, except I could see him. He was working. I could see by his expression that he missed me. I dreamed that we talked. When I woke I felt calm. Comforted. Then reality reasserted itself and I remembered. And it hurt.

I listened to mom talk for two hours tonight. She was talking about my brother’s dad and how she didn’t want him back and why would she want someone who never treated her right  and I could hear in her voice that it hurt. I realized, we are the same. We give our trust to men who hurt us. We love those who never let us belong. It’s this longing that will never be fulfilled, because they never let us in.

There’s a line in one of my favorite songs. The meaning isn’t even close to what it sounds to me. It’s about Louis Peltier and how he was wrongly imprisoned. Honestly, I don’t care what the real meaning is. It’s Crazy Life by Toad the Wet Sprocket.

Anyway, it don’t seem right, he’s in there while you’re on the outside.

To me, those words were from one outsider to another. How some people are welcomed and included, while for someone like mom, or me, we’re always left watching from a strictly kept distance.

Like how I’ve always been into games and writing and somehow I had always been left out while even ex-wives were welcomed in. And no matter how hard I tried to be agreeable and accepting and whatever they wanted, I was never a part of anything.

“Anyway it don’t seem right, he’s in there while youre on the outside…”

Do you hear it now?

One Year Gone

One day gone and I already missed your fallen grace,
One week gone but I still heard your words.
One month gone and I still woke up crying, 
Reaching for your hand,
One breath gone but it still lingersed on.

There are no words for this loss,
There’s no way to break this course.
And I can’t forget you even though I tried. 

Another morning without your taste,
Another dream of your embrace.
Another day gone and I’ve been standing still,
Waiting for your last call,
Another moment passesd and I am still alone.

There is no way to take it back,
There’s no hope along this track,
I wish I could forgive myself that one lie.

Three years back, I remember well,
Three months long, before there was hell,
Three lives ago when life had open doors,
You waited, reaching out your hand.
Three small words that faded in the wind.

I could rip the sky apart to meet you,
Stepping back through time.
To when you were kind and I was whole

But one year now and you are gone,
One hope dies without a sigh,
One breathe out and here I am alone.

An old poem, reworked. One year now. I can feel it behind the walls. A black tar that burns my mortar like acid.

Is it real or just my brain? I find it hard to trust my mind.  I wish I could change the characters in my story. In my head I’m the villain and he’s the prince and if only I was good enough. It feels like a failure of me. If I was worthy he would be here. But I’m not, so he couldn’t lower himself to be with me.

It was his choice. He chose this. He broke promises to both of us.

I hate promises. It feels like people love to tell you what you want to hear, but they never do what their pretty words promised. And I tell myself I deserve to be happy, but underneath, there’s the surety that I don’t.

“We accept the love we think we deserve.”

What do I deserve?

Five A.M.

Another all-nighter.

It’s been a long day. So, I have school aged kids. And my youngest loves people. She loves hugging and playing and sharing clothes… and hats…

Someone contacted me and told me that we needed to check hair. And yep. Lice. So after everything else that has happened, I’ve been dealing with combing hair, treating hair, washing clothes and sheets. It’s probably one of the most annoying and humiliating things a mother has to deal with. It’s one of those few times I’m glad to be a hermit. At least it hasn’t spread far. The girls’ hair is okay now, I combed through it until bedtime. And my own hair smells like licorice and it’s making me sick but at least I’m not itching. This has happened before and I’m so frustrated with it. At least my cousin is helping me with my hair. I can’t do my own and Nate won’t do it. “Your hair is hard to do.” Yeah. I know. But dammit it has to be done.

Listening to Amanda Palmer reading from her book “The Art of Asking”. Her voice is reassuring and comforting in a way that I’ve missed. I remember lying in the back floorboard of cars as a kid and listening to my mom talk while the rumble under my head lulls me to sleep.

I know I have complained a lot about my mother. And she is a chore. But so am I and I think the biggest problem is we are both so overwhelmed by our own shit and she held hers in for so long she can’t keep it inside even if she wanted. I don’t know what changed her mind on Easter, but she’s taken some small moments of actually listening to me. And confiding things in me, which I’m not certain are truths or just her way of trying to relate with me.

I wonder sometimes, the more things she confides, if we are in some way cursed. That’s what this feels like sometimes. Like I was given a broken brain, or no skin over my emotions. Everything is immediate and raw, and maybe the things she does when she acts out stems from the same place my own raw rage and grief and fear comes from. I tell myself that I should be more understanding, even as she is torturing me with her anxieties and bitterness.

I probably won’t feel it tomorrow. But this morning, the connection is there.