Eyes Wide Shut

For the gathousandth time

I look in my own eyes

Searching for a glimpse of her

The girl I was

All I see is shadowy pain

Dimmed promise

Blighted hope

Battered belief

I search still

Who is left in there

Whose pain is being reflected

Whose fatigue

Whose caution and fear

If eyes are the window to the soul

It’s time to move

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Friendly Fire

Is it a lack of courage

Or a refusal to use it

That defines cowardice

I can feel possibilities

Yet let them slip away

As I stay with my Fear

Arms locked like cousins

Does that make me a coward

Or am I just aligned with the wrong side

Is it possible to lack courage

Or do we pick a team and then deny having picked

Inspired by The Daily Post Daily Word Prompt: cowardice

Bingeworthy

I lay, spent, numb

My pain suspended in the discomfort

The known sedation of having gorged

More appealing than tolerating my escalating feelings

Too-full-ness better than emptiness

Physically weakening myself somehow feels like power

For an all-too-brief moment

I am calm, the fear and dread are quiet

And being alive in this body feels almost OK

Until it doesn’t, again

Inspired by The Daily Post Daily Word Prompt: gorge

49/51

There is a life force within

It has seen me through

Black-pitched soul’s dark nights

Days so thick with despair

I could barely breathe or move

Sometimes it was so very close

If not for that push inside

To continue on this journey

The pull to end it could have won

But something in me wants to live

Inspired by The Daily Post Daily Word Prompt: continue

Flight

I lay on my side

Face away from the door

Stay still, slow my breath

Pray he thinks I’m asleep

Then a breeze shocks my back

The sheet lifts, the bed shifts

Hot breath at my neck

No luck tonight, fear chokes my heart

I go into a trance, nothingness

The familiar comfort of the void

Leave my body, don’t need it

My soul and I, we float into the wallpaper

Inspired by The Daily Post Daily Word Prompt: trance

Carry On

Things That Are Traditional in My Family That I Inherited (Whether I Like It Or Not:)

Grandmother’s Thanksgiving Stuffing

Disbelief in Good Things Lasting

Aunt’s Pumpkin Bread Served at All Gatherings

Serving Dishes and Calling Them “Salads” Even Though They Contain No Vegetables Unless You Consider Miniature Marshmallows and Jello Vegetables

Dad and Uncle’s Christmas Chili

Finding the Least Trafficked Back-Routes When Driving Places Even If It Takes Much Longer Just Because “It’s The Back-Way”

Spode Christmas Tree China On the Table at Major Holidays Whether It Is Christmas Or Not

Distrust of Strangers & Non-Family People, Too

Gradma’s Green Bean Recipe

Waiting for The Proverbial “Other Shoe” to Drop

Watching Longhorn Games on TV No Matter What the Occasion (Funeral/Holiday)

The Avoidance of Heavy Traffic and Bad Weather At All Costs Even If It Means Not Going Out

Keeping A Stiff Upper Lip/Never Let Them See You Cry/Keep It In The Family

Inspired By The Daily Post Daily Word Prompt: traditional

 

 

 

 

Inside-Out

I have been dealing with depression. Again. This is not a new phenomenon to me. I have been dealing with It all of my life, or at least as far back as I can recall. I call It depression in order to explain it to people. But I have come to understand it more and more as simply energy. Energy from my own system, energy that is mine and is not mine at the same time. It is an outcry. It is a soul strike.

This depression requires of me that I stay at home, alone, with only the company of my cat, Miracle. If I am out and about, and it hits, this depression demands of me to pull out of My Life and go home. If I am at home when it hits, It will not let me leave. There is literally a magnetic, heavy pull. A dragging down. An exhaustion like a huge, thick blanket on my body and in my heart. My belly is tense with a sheet of iron-like tension that I keep trying to release through awareness and breath. I get it to relax a moment, but as soon as my mind wanders, and I return to it, it is there again, hard and steely.

Its’ requirements? No outside interruption. No demands. No stressors. No people. Quiet. Solitude. Just me with all the me’s I have ever been. One or another of them needs my own attention and caring. Some part of me needs to be heard. To be seen. Sometimes, to be saved.

I fight It. It has been years that I have fought against hearing these inner needs, these lost parts of me. I used to use things to try to drown them out. To try to shut them up. They felt so overwhelming to me. I had no way of dealing with them, because I wasn’t capable. I had no core self from which to do such a thing from. I wasn’t grown up enough to mother anyone.

Over the last 11 years I have worked hard to grow myself up, to find my core self, to heal. In the last four years, I have worked hard to know all of my selves and their needs, to become more accepting of these times when my own system just shuts me down. It has been a painstakingly slow but incredibly crucial process.

Today I needed to write something hopeful, encouraging and acknowledging to my self. A combination gratitude and brag list, two practices that have been extremely helpful to me.

I am grateful:

For trusting my own process even when my spirit and body and soul parts feel disparate.

For my intelligence and my lack of knowing it all.

For my inner-knowing and my lack of intelligence.

For the parts of me that I think are ugly and mean and stupid: the “Loser” parts so quick to rise up within and flood my system – they are constantly looking for evidence in the outside world that will mirror back what it forcefully tells me – that I am fat, a loser, stupid, shy, weird, misshapen, disgusting.  These parts that bully me (as some bizarre kind of protection of some other very raw parts inside) – they are precious and worthy and are such important parts of me.

I celebrate them and brag about how wonderful they are in hopes that they will hear me and let my heart hold their pain and their shame so that new life can fill them with love and light. I say to them:

I am not shy. I am sometimes shy. How beautiful I am to feel that way sometimes.

I am not stupid. Sometimes I do not know things. Sometimes I do stupid things. I say, “Brava, Me!”

I am not fat. Sometimes I put on protection. Sometimes I fall into old ways of comforting myself. How human of me. What a vulnerability that proves that I have inside me. What soft crevices I contain that crave such filling. I love that about me.

I am not a loser. I am not ugly and weird looking. I am wondrous and epic and multi-faceted and one of a kind. I am me. I am my own shape. I am my own timbre. I am my own expression of the beauty and wonder of the world. Every single cell of me is a miracle and I celebrate the magical wonder that I was born into this world at this time in this form.

Today I dance with depression. Maybe tomorrow It will quiet down, and I can once again go back out onto the skinny branches, and live out loud again.