Thought I’d burnt it all;
Every love note memory.
How can there be more?!
Was reading about dry drowning
And I suddenly was four.
Remembering my mother’s hypervigilance surrounding me
“It only takes a teaspoon to drown!”
And this led to my flooded warren…
My Piscean draw to the moon
Sand and waves
My mermaidian desires
How it wasn’t her android pelvis holding me back
But my fear of leaving the amniotic
Funny now, I think of it.
How we need the water
We’re 75% or something
(Same as the earth herself)
But she refused to let us wear seat belts,
Because if we wrecked in the drink, we’d drown.
She was so scared of water.
Never did learn how to swim
Except for underneath
And strangely, she never did come up,
To surface so she died:
In the life giving force we need
And instilled the fear
But it only made me want it more
Then the thoughts, they jumped to you.
The cliffs we slid down in winter,
And the irony of the ocean that day
Your ass hitting the ice,
A frozen attempt at life
You lost me in the sea grass
But climbed a tree to scout me a path.
I’m not hydrophobic anymore.
As always, in this non-stop over-analytical brain of mine, I have been pondering a lot of things as of late; mainly the fact that over and over again I am told that I am a narcissist due to my verbal observations that I am the common denominator in all of my failures, from relationships to interoffice communications. I have been reflecting on this a lot, as I was studying for my clinical board exam. (I do not fit the criteria, in case you were wondering).
However I do find that I tend to be a pessimist, I feel paranoid often, and I make trust issues themselves suspicious. It’s a thing. I know it. I have done lots of therapy over the years.
As a teenager, I used to tell people I was bipolar, as if it were a cool thing…something to be proud of that explained how much of a special, creative, and emotional snowflake I was… Not knowing how fucked up that was. Ignorance is bliss right? But I do know that I have occasionally fit the criteria for a variety of personality disorders, namely dependent and/or borderline personality disorder, but they wax and waned over the years to the point that while I may feel it sometimes it is no longer acutely “diagnosable”(sp). I know that is the least professional way to put it but I am not sure how else to word it. Go with me, please.
Many times, I have found that I am jealous of people that are bubbly, happy, ridiculously positive. I have even caught myself assuming that they are less intelligent than I. I mean come on, how can you know what is happening in the world and still be that FUCKING happy? But the world is always fucked up. I have nothing to show that it will ever be anything else. We just have more knowledge of it these days, right? So what is the secret? Mindfulness? Ignorance? “staying present”? How do you get there? I believe that thoughts are things and that aside from being a commercial success, things like “The Secret” have something to them, albeit financially fleecing as they are. That does not mean they are not correct, real, or accurate. If the people getting rich and being successful from sharing this info are doing it, then huzzah, it works? Who knows. But how do you maintain it? How do you stay positive, happy, etc in the life we are given?
It seems to me that there is a common theme throughout all written history of humans, we suck, we are unhappy, and yet, we persist. We run the spectrum, from being capable of the worst things imaginable, to being capable of the most awe inspiring things. I always think of the movie, The Abyss and the part at the end where the distraught aliens decide NOT to annihilate us because of this observation. There is always the question of why, for what, how come, what is the meaning, what is happy, how do you find it, etc etc etc.. I have no illusions of being a special or creative snowflake for thinking about this. I am no narcissist in this regard. But really, how do people do it?
What is THE SECRET?
How do you feel satisfaction and fulfillment in a sustainable way? How do you maintain relationships? Jobs? Sanity?
How do you become a Katie fucking Couric? So maddeningly fucking positive that you can find a direction and impetus in tragedy?
How do you stay in the moment, when everything is distracting you with shiny lights or terrifying depths?
You know, asking for a friend.
And it’s only now, that I get it.
Naivety and overconfidence. What a combo.
What though the radiance which was once so bright
Be now for ever taken from my sight,
Though nothing can bring back the hour
Of splendour in the grass,
of glory in the flower,
We will grieve not, rather find
Strength in what remains behind;
In the primal sympathy
Which having been must ever be;
In the soothing thoughts that spring
Out of human suffering;
In the faith that looks through death,
In years that bring the philosophic mind.
~ William Wordsworth
And I performed all the rituals;
To excise you from my being:
I said the words, I sang the songs,
I burned the poppets, offerings, and herbs.
The vernal equinox brought forlorn surrender
With all my naked tears,
thrown at the ocean.
Midsummer brought quiet understanding
Still the skyclad blood dance was all for naught.
Acceptance turned to woken realization,
The exorcism had not uncleaved…
My self imposed division.
The queen of cups,
The knight of swords,
Time brought on the autumnal passing.
Themes of knowledge and woe,
Of things that cannot be unsaid, unknown.
Samhain a solemn reminder,
Of the work remaining to be done.
The full moon purge,
The blessings be,
The earth is coming full circle.
It’s been five months, the interwebs tell me, since I posted a new blog. It made me wonder why and I began reviewing the past five months, the past ten months, the past year, decade, life. I’ve been trying to remember who I was, who I am, who I am becoming, who I want(ed) to become. I believe that people don’t really change who they are, character wise; but beliefs and behaviors and experiences definitely alter the way that core self presents itself. Without getting all geeky and social workery, and keeping a trauma informed frame of reference, I’ve come to the following thought processes I am still clarifying internally:
Happiness isn’t only a noun. Like trust, it is a verb as well. A state of being. We all seem to seek it, we may delude ourselves into believing things are altruistic or selfless, but peace, true peace and grace in the sense of happiness, are mere moments we sometimes work for and sometimes come easily. They can be fleeting, lasting only a moment, no longer than a blink, a kiss, a memory. Or they may last 97 days. But there are two guarantees in terms of happiness: as long as you are consciously living (maybe when you aren’t) these moments will always end, and come again. Sometimes it’s longer between moments, sometimes they are so quick to cycle you don’t notice the breaks.
Personally, as long as I can remember, contentment eludes me most times for whatever reason. But I have the moments, glimpses that get me through to the next one. I get bored and unsatisfied with every facet of my being, but if I can keep from destroying things too permanently in the interim, I’m able to know I am okay. I am always okay. As I have matured, I’ve realized it is better to destroy my hair, paint a wall, bite my nails til they bleed… rather than walking out on jobs, people, friends, places, etc. but subconsciously I think I still check out. Some in my world realize this about me, and love me anyway. Some people know it but don’t understand it. They take it as a personal affront and push me away. But that’s okay, too. Everyone outgrows people and situations. Everyone has their own happiness to mitigate and manage. I find it easier to console and regulate myself as I get older, what used to be dissociation and borderline personality tendencies has become more nostalgia and rueful, but with a sense of peace. It’s odd.
As previously stated, I’m still processing things. I’m very proud that I have learned to forgive myself and see beauty in myself others saw and I denied. For the most part anyway, I still full on have moments of doubt and self loathing, to be sure. But even more obvious than grace, these moments are shorter. I consciously realize when I am feeling regret and doubt in my world. And I can just as easily talk myself out of it, but it’s work. It’s a verb. Love is a verb. Self love is sometimes the hardest. Learning to stop internalizing negativity and reframing it into a palatable lesson has been the crux of this year. I’m thankful for the immense amount of pain I have felt. The sense of loss. The ability to be so wrecked by something I find myself lying on the ground in a totally inconsolable heap. Because I can get up. I can still be okay. I can be loved and love again. I can accept things in the forms that I did not want. Or did not plan. I can keep going. I can be happy to have what I have, despite it not being what I dreamed or imagined. I choose peace.
And so it goes.
“I can’t explain what I mean. And even if I could, I’m not sure I’d feel like it.” ~ Salinger
I have previously written about loneliness, here. It is interesting to me how loneliness changes and presents itself; and in what situations. I have often lamented in real life and all forms of my “virtual” life that communication is becoming less personal, like AI. No longer are skills like reading people, situations, exchanging energy, gazes that inspired poets, as valued…or learned. There is an entire generation growing up, (socially disadvantaged in my opinion) without making eye contact, without interacting, without the time or distance to be mindful about what they say or how they react to things. We cause ourselves anxiety over not getting likes, not getting responses back, etc. In our effort to feel a part of something, we make ourselves apart. We can be in the same room as someone and not even look at them. Cursory, rote greetings have become a standard. We sit at restaurants with our loved ones and don’t make eye contact… with our lovers, our parents, our kids.
We get some sort of a chemical addiction to the instant gratification… Our Pavlovian response encourages us continue the high… the goddamn blue bubbles of solace. But we may have someone LITERALLY right next to us. And yet, we seek communication from the ether…We have a cognitive dissonance about the links between loneliness and being alone. Because those of us, with the privilege to have technology, have created a culture of slumber parties consisting of a group of adolescents snapchatting each other from the same room, no one looking at the stars unless they can get a pic of them, instagram, pinterest, etc. We are past the point of sexual revolution gratuitous hook ups, online dating, facebooking, pornography, vines, vaguebooking, comparing ourselves to real and imagined foes, stalking, bullying, trolling, sexting, mentally checking out, gaming, hunting, shooting, racing, battling, flying, etc….
It truly makes me very sad. For us all. Now granted, I know #noteveryperson whatever. BUT we are going that way and very fucking fast. I am guilty. You are too. You are reading a goddamn blog that was either in your email, on your twitter, on your facebook, googleplusokcupidpinterestKiKtindergrindrzoosk, whatever the fuck. You didn’t come looking for a blog by Jani B.
I am lonely a lot. And upon a lot of alone and lonely time countered with a lot of around people and still lonely time, I have realized it is not the being alone part that bothers me, it really is the loneliness. When you have an entire manic world in your head to talk to someone about and no one asks. When you spend all day giving and giving to people who are not in a position to give back, and you are spent, lonely. When you have an amazing day and want to share it with ANYONE but all that is available is social media..or yourself… When you are in an office full of people, all day, all week, and unless it is a client or someone needing something, no one talks to you. When you shut off your Facebook and the only people that contact you now are family members wanting to know if you blocked them specifically. I am lonely at times around friends because I am either so up in my own head that I am not really interacting with them or they are so engaged with someone else my introvertedness makes me wilt and seem disinterested.
I have always prided myself on my communication and intuitive skills. Technology however, has made me crazy, made me anxious. I am happy that I grew up in an era where real life communication skills were more important than properly formatted for office politic emails. Back in the good ol’ days when you didn’t abbreviate much and spelling counted, in love letters, gossip notes, poetry, cards, and invitations. When you used words, those oh so important words, combined with physical existence, body language, and observed emotion, not texted emoji.
I think that is why so many elderly couples die so close together or remarry so quickly. The loneliness. So many losses…having someone breathing next to you at night, someone that no matter what is going on out there, you know you have someone to share with here. The loss of that must wreck havoc on the soul, the heart, the immune system. I know what I experience after not having that for a much shorter time than the elderly couple I imagine. I cannot even fathom what it would be like after 30, 40, 50 years.
I fear for the current and future generations. Those with the skinniest thumbs and curviest necks will evolve via natural selection in an unnatural way. Homo Curva. That’s the next evolutionary leap.
Growth is a painful process, this is definitely not a new concept. However, in the course of learning about oneself and how your own behaviors affect those around you, it gives you an opportunity to see the tangible and observable ways that all interactions are cyclical. Energy is an observable phenomenon that can power the light in the darkness, but it can also blow circuits; it just depends on the wattage and capacity.
Ideally in relationships, at least for me, the dyad is a constant give and take. If one person is needing more support, energy, love, whatever, the other person gives it to them with the faith that when the roles reverse, the current receiver will be the giver. When this does not happen repeatedly, resentment builds into all sorts of negative things. Eventually the strain causes a blow out, one you can’t always see, but you can definitely feel. It is at this point that you have to make a decision: increase the size of your breaker or reduce the load on your circuit.
Once you know that things are strained and communicate what the needs are, one would hope that the other half of the circuit would respond in kind to make the adjustments needed so that the cycle continues in a positive way. But often, the other person is simply not capable of giving the energy needed to complete the current cycle. It is what it is.
Love is energy. It is neither positive or negative. It IS an alternating current. When it becomes a direct current, the chance to be shocked increases. Being shocked isn’t always bad, hell, that’s how a defibrillator works on your heart, right?
My power strip is overloaded right now. My heart swells with love and explodes with confusion. It is a very difficult place to be in, this place of understanding and yet, this place of confusion. Process is fucking uncomfortable. Regrets are useless but still valuable tools. “Fear of missing out” is a truly a fear of regret… But if fear is what keeps you from accepting and returning the love that you are actually being given, you have created your own short.
Sometimes you just have to wait for someone to complete your circuit… but first you have to ground yourself.
Rain can bring things back to life…
Rain can also drown them.
All power is an illusion…
Yet energy exchanged freely is tangible.
“Love” can be an adverb, a noun, a verb;
it’s really just like “Fuck.”
Hope can be a welcome gift…
She can and will, also fool you.
One commits to seeing it through,
the other remains righteously based in fear.
A secret can encourage alliances,
concurrently it feeds into concern.
Sunshine is what allows all life,
but the sun can cause also cancer.
Chemo is a curative,
while simultaneously it poisons the body.
Intimacy is not to be forsaken,
dismissed for the idea of “What if..”
Regret can turn to reflection…
Reflection can change your reality.
Emotion influences logic,
logic without emotion is cold.
Opening Pandora’s box gave knowledge and insight,
wisdom not always appreciated.
Patience is a virtue,
but one that can quickly grow sour.
Bitter on the tongue of the confused,
waiting to be swallowed hard by the word…