Losing My Way

I’ve lost my way time and time again.

Searching through the ruble,

wiping the dust from my shins

I often find a clearing,

the light shines through

I start to climb to freedom,

hope fills the air

I reach for a boulder,

to make my last steps

It was an illusion. 

It was never there.

I lose my grip on the vanishing air.

My feet slip below me

The darkness settles in

And now I’ve lost my way

time and time again.

It’s Time

I paused yesterday during my internal struggle for peace and realized I have been neglectful. 

I have been neglecting myself. I preach what should be done and when it comes to it, I fall short. 

It’s what happens, I suppose. We are supposed to learn, fail, and grow. 

I wonder when I’ll succeed. When I’ll stop falling short. But these questions I’m never suppose to know. That’s the complexity of life. We live, try our best, and share our wisdom. 

It’s a turbulent journey. 

When life becomes too much to bear, I have to pause and think about being grateful. It doesn’t come easy. I’ve come to realize, it never will. 

In the tradition of using Friday to think about what I’m grateful for, I’ll give you a list. 

It’s small, but it’s truth is real. 

  • In times where I feel alone, a friend shines through and reminds me they’ve always been there. For this, I am grateful for my friends. I have a handful that really know me, and I love them all. 
  • I am grateful for my parents. They do all they can for me, and I never say thank you enough. 
  • I am grateful I have a job. I often loathe it, but it’s still there as long as they find me worthy. 
  • My niece. She’s amazing, smart, funny, and when you’re sad she knows exactly what to do. She’s a true gift. 

Take some time to pause and be grateful. It can be difficult, but it gives new perspective and sometimes that’s all we need to silence the mind. 

He’s pausing, but it’s possible he’s thinking about cookies. 

A Little Taste 

When I have time, I write small portions of a book taking space in my head. It is in first person and it is meant to look like an authors account of true events, or rather my life story. When I put it all together, it will be about a woman who struggles to cope with mental illness in a world that constantly judges. She copes in other ways too, but that’s the voices talking. 

Enjoy. 

When I was young, I would question my existence. I would ponder the meaning of why. Why did we bother to do anything if we were just going to die in the end? What was the point? Why try? 
I managed to press through the thoughts. I sought out other ideas, hobbies, and allowed myself to live a little. 
Once in a while, the thoughts come back. 

When I was younger, I wasn’t aware of the state I put myself in when questioning why I bother to live. What a sight it must have been for others to see me sad; so suddenly. 

I’m better at hiding it now. I work, I form relationships, I seek some sort of happiness. It looms, the agony, the dread. But I’m better at pushing through – sometimes. Lately, it hovers longer than I’d like. Often, it clings and I can’t shake it, wash it, peel back its decaying skin. It hangs like the air on a humid day. 

I become stuck. I stick to my thoughts. They control my fighting mind; the part of my mind that resists the constant question – why are you still here? Why hasn’t anyone found you in a pool of blood?

I’m not sure, but my resisting mind wants to know why these demons keep lurking around? What is their purpose? Why did they choose me?
When you think of yourself, others don’t find themselves into the equation. Depression, for me is a one way street. Ahh, but that isn’t really true because the anxiety in me only cares about others, and the looming psychopath in me wants to murder every soul I see. 
Mental illness isn’t cute anymore. It never was. 

I grew up in a time where it was a growing trend of weirdos who dressed in black and were always sad. They made depression somehow glamorous and soon nearly everyone I knew wore eyeliner and combed their hair over one eye. But what about the people who were trying to act normal because they fought real demons? Not ones that pretended to just so they could fight the establishment and in return draw attention to themselves because no one at home gave a shit. 
I had parents who gave a shit, they just didn’t know they had to. To them, I was normal. I did normal things, had normal friends, and had a normal mind. 
I actually wanted to be normal. Instead, I fought to live. My mind wanted my soul and it almost won, more than a few times. I prayed to die and hoped I wouldn’t make it past 25. In fact, I was certain I wouldn’t live past then. I was so sure, I started doing things to speed along the process. It never happened. When 25 came, I cried until I nearly went into a psychosis. I took some pills to wash away the pain, and I woke in a heavier dispair. I was with someone then. Someone who saw my crazy. They seemed to embrace it and I’ll never know and never want to know why. 
At this point, I gave in. I stayed with this person and just became someone I wasn’t – normal. I thought I should so I could at least stop the voices. I had to stop the demons. 
But they were still there. In fact they came on full force. I started taking meds. It was a tragic sight. I changed. The voices stopped. The demons stopped licking the gray matter, but the claws never retracted. 
I started living. I went to therapy. I was normal. But we’re not really normal, are we? We just turn into zombies. 

I made cakes, made friends, cooked dinner, and went to parties. I was a wife. Sometimes I was really good. Sometimes I really sucked. 

The demons played sometimes. They broke the med spell and when they played, the voices were worse than before. I would cry until I lost parts of me that I’ll never see again. I broke. After I broke, I broke again and again until the meds were gone and I started to sabbatoge my existence. If I was miserable, so was everyone else. No one was safe. 
My unstable life made the voices more active. I had boughs of hysteria,as the old school doctors would say, more often than boughs of sanity. I longed to be institutionalized. I joked about it. That’s what you do. You joke about how crazy you are so you can deflect your problems. People laugh with you and it reinforces the behavior until even you start to believe the lies. They are just jokes, you tell yourself. You’re not crazy. 
So you live your life. Like normal people do, but your thoughts are more demented. So you hang around people who are almost the same. It makes you feel better about yourself. 
They don’t know the truth. No one knows the truth. When you confide in someone, they disregard you and just say things that they think will make you feel better because in reality you’ve made them feel uncomfortable and now they don’t know how to act around you and you find your list of friends getting smaller and smaller. 
Don’t worry, you have the voices. 
I do. The demons are nice as well. I enjoy their powerful hold. Their tight, crippling grip of despair. In fact, I’ve grown so accustomed to their presence I’m not sure I’d know how to be without them -which actually scares me to the core. 

The Fight Continues

A continuation of yesterday’s poem…
I know what I should do. 

But I can’t seem to do it. 

I sit down with hope. 

I can’t sift through it. 

Pencil meets paper. 

So thoughts can flow free.

But something is inside

Putting its grip on me.

I have more to give. 

There’s more to be told.

I must release this demon.

I must release the hold. 

Finding A Lost Dream

Today started like any other. I woke, prepared for the day, went to my vehicle, and opened the gate to leave. As I unhooked the chain, my thoughts transcended to that burning, perplexing question, What am I doing? 

I’m going to work. I’m slaving away. I don’t like what I’m doing and I have to change it. I had a vision of waking early, but it wasn’t to pay the man. It was to feed the horses, play with the dog, and write. 

I want to write. Instead, I am focused on making a dollar. I thought about all the excuses I make for not putting pen to paper. I thought of all the famous writers who made time. They made it happen. It wouldn’t just happen for me, I had to make sure it happened for me. 

I’ve had enough of wanting. I had to want it so bad it became a necessity. 

As the day wore on, my mind changed once again. Just because I wasn’t fond of my current job, didn’t mean I had to purposefully make it miserable in order to justify, or rather co-sign, my own bullshit. I had to make my current situation just as wonderful as the thought of my proposed future situation. 

Not only do I have to make changes so I am able to fulfill my dreams of raising a horse, playing with a dog, and writing for a living, I have to make a change within my mind so I don’t sabotage my current situation. 

Who cares if it sucks. And does it really suck? No. No it doesn’t. I just think it does. I make it suck. 

So as I continue to learn and grow, I let today’s revelation transform me. I tell myself to work harder at perusing your dreams. It will never just “fall in your lap”. 

I tell myself to stop making current situations horrible. Even though it isn’t what I want, it’s what I have and I must make the best of it. 

Let this be the year we strive harder, live more, and follow our dreams with the wildest of ambitions combined with a strong desire to see it through because no one knows exactally how to make them true but yourself. 

2016

For some of us, 2016 was one of the worst years to date. It stole some very famous, loved people, it left some of us jobless, homeless, sick, and without anymore people to love. It was a rough stretch of road.

For myself, 2016 seemed to be a beginning of hope; everything was falling into place. I had a great new job prospect, I was going to sign on a house, and a relationship that was sure to become doomed seem to be mending itself. I was certain 2016 was going to be my best year yet.  

Before the beginning of February, it slowly started to fall apart. The new job fizzled away, the house fell through, and the relationship faded. By the middle of the year, I was thinking of ways to get out of my situation. It was going in circles and I needed to jump from the ferris wheel before it sent me off a cliff.  

I ended up deciding I needed to move back home. I needed to leave the sunshine, leave some very valuable friends, leave a decent job, and leave my marriage. By the end of August, I upheaved myself and my dog back to Missouri. I moved back into my parents at 36. That was rough. It took a lot of adjusting. I did not have a job and my bills piled.  

I often give up pretty quickly, but I knew I couldn’t. 2016 wasn’t going to get me. I sent out resumes, went to many interviews, and even landed a great job with help from a friend. The job wasn’t for me. So I went out to find another. I couldn’t give up.  

While I struggled to deal with reality, it started to hit me – my unsettled emotions. I never dealt with what I left behind. I started to break.  

For me, I always try to keep a good support system. I had to cling to it. My life would depend on it.  

I am better. 2016 tried to get me and I didn’t let it. I fought to stay a float.  

Living with my parents was one of the best decisions I have ever made. They have and continue to help me everyday. There are some things they do that I am not sure I will ever be able to pay back. Everyday I am grateful.  

2016 has taught me many lessons.

1. Not everyone is your friend.

2. Trusting others is a tricky delicacy.

3. Some friends will never be replaced or will ever want to be replaced.

4. Those with less, give more.

5. We are not meant to have everything, just everything we need.

6. The word grateful means more to me than years past.

7. Friends and family are my greatest assets.

8. There is more beauty in this world that was lost to me in the past.

9. Time is not to be squandered.

10. Love with all your heart because that’s all you have.
Even though 2016 was very difficult, I had to stop and see the good. This year has taught me to stop and realize just this. Look around you, find the joy, and embrace it. If you don’t, 2017 will be just as difficult as the years before.  

Life will try you. It will test your strength. Life will try to break you and never ask if you’re okay. You have to look out for yourself, and you have to make sure to cherish the ones that love you.  

Don’t make 2017 great. Instead, fill the year with memories, joy, laughter, tears, love, friends, and doing the things you love. For if you continue to keep doing these things, 2017 won’t be great because you tried to force it, it will be great because you lived exactly how you wanted.  

Thank you for continuing to read and follow my blog. I hope you found the good inside 2016 and I hope you find even more to be grateful for in 2017.  

Happy New Year.  

A Sliver…

Hello my faithful followers. It’s Friday. For some of us, it is a good day. We slack off in the office. We count down the hours until it is time to leave   

Oh Friday. ….

I’m having a difficult time feeling grateful lately. 

Others are reminding me about how awesome things are going, and they are. 

However, I’m a self-sabotager. (I’m making-up this word) 

That’s right people. I sabotage my own happiness. Why? I don’t know. 

I don’t allow myself to be truly happy. I never really have. I force myself to smile, to say hello, to give a hug here and there. It’s exhausting. At the end of the day, I need lots of room and silence to put on a happy face and face the world once more. 

Even as I write this, I pause to contemplate what words I will type next. I’m tired. 

So while I do post about being grateful, finding inspiration, and finding out who you truly are, I have days where it is all out of grasp, and that’s okay. 

There is a bountiful list of things for which we should be grateful. We should seek to find who we are. We should always strive to become better. However, it’s okay to let it slip away, but not too far. 

One day, I’ll stop sabotaging myself. 

Today I will remind myself it isn’t as bad as I think and try to find a sliver of happiness because sometimes a sliver is all we have. 

The Dark

Often, I stand in the darkness to awaken my senses. The wilderness brings a plethora of noises lost when the sun warms the earth. I hear things only the darkness can bring to light. The wind rustles the leaves and each leaf sings to its own tune. The bugs talk briefly and then listen to the wind. The birds hum and stop to listen to the rain tapping the earth. You can hear a howling dog in the distance. On some nights you can hear the coyotes breaking their silence to deliver their special code to let the others know the hunt is commencing. The shadows dance with the wind. Their fierce tango drives the moon mad. It looks upon the earth hoping to paint a perfect picture, but it angers at the wind and its games. It draws the clouds like a veil to shield the insanity.

The night brings a different perspective when the eyes are limited with vision. Suddenly, the dark plays tricks with your mind and nestles visions never seen. You stand, motionless, hoping to hear something you’ve never yet heard. You stand like a stone while your senses develop a deeper intelligence. Your hair starts to stand. Your skin starts to crawl and you start to wonder if you were meant for the night at all. Your eyes dart in every direction making your mind wonder if what you heard is real. The black encases you. The wind tickles your hair. You move quickly, turning to see what is there. It’s the dark, telling you to leave. For maybe the moon is on to something, using the clouds to blind itself. The dark hides what we are not ready to view. The wind lets us know to return to our slumber until the sun makes it entrance.

What draws us to the dark? What makes me stand there welcoming the unknown? There is beauty in what we cannot see. There is beauty in the silence. To listen to the rain, the birds, the howling wolves, or the insects whispering is more than noise. It is the break from useless chatter, buzzing phones, and a senseless box telling me how to feel. The dark is more than a sign to wind down. It is a message. So I stand in the dark awaiting a message that the light fails to give; a message to the senses.

Transformation 

If feelings were tangible, I would burn them. I would tie them to a chair and begin my wrath of torture. My time would be consumed with giving each feeling exactly what it deserved.

What a world we live in when our feelings torture us and we can do nothing in return. We have to suffer; to learn how to cope. If we could only learn how to transform from them instead of living with them.

Lately, my feelings have consumed me. The change I have dealt with recently is leaving me in shambles. Coping with my torturous feelings is, at times, more than I can bear. It isn’t enough to cope anymore. I must transform.

I suppose my feelings are holding me captive and I am now developing Stockholm syndrome. If you are laughing at that statement, good. If you laughed and then cried, good. Transformation is emotional.

It can leave you weak, vulnerable, and it can also leave you strong. Those three words separately are different. When they are together, they transform into something much different. Let me explain.

My feelings often leave me weak. When I am weak, I am vulnerable to my thoughts. The scariest part about my thoughts are they can lead to harm. The last thing I want is for my thoughts to overtake my logic. The beauty in transformation is the strength. When my emotions drain my energy, I don’t want to do a whole lot. I would rather suffer. I can’t. It isn’t an option. Strength finds its way and transforms my vulnerability into a sliver of confidence. It isn’t much, but it is enough. Once I become confident, I am no longer weak.

Transformation is emotional, but it is also a blessing. If we do not learn to transform from our suffering, we will lose the will to cope, and our feelings will hold us captive – forever.

Will they come back for round two? Sure, but our transformation has left us stronger and more willing to fight. Soon, our feelings will find us, but leave in the same amount of time. We will recognize them, and take control.

Transformation is emotional, but it is also beautiful. It has made you the person you are today. Perhaps you haven’t fully transformed as of yet. Many of us do not see it’s entirety until we reach an old age. But that is why we are here. To be better than the last time. May it take a lifetime to achieve what I failed to achieve in my last life, for in the next life, I will know, and I will conquer.

So transform, become great, be strong, and face your feelings. They will guide you to the person you were born to be.