Quote of the day...er...week...umm...hey, look, a quote!!

"...besides love, independence of thought is the greatest gift an adult can give a child." - Bryce Courtenay, The Power of One

For old quotes, look here.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

I Wish She'd Get Laryngitis

The voice in my head, the one that sounds so god awfully familiar, the voice that told childhood me that I was too fat, too lazy, not tall enough, not smart enough, not graceful enough, too tall, not good enough, never, ever good enough, HER voice, that voice in my head is relentless tonight.

Oh, she is mocking me.

She tells me I am alone, lonely, because I'm not worth any effort.  She tells me I am horrid to look at, so faded and wrinkled, used up and damaged, flabby and soft...how can I hope anyone would want to hold me, touch me, want me?  For all that I try not to want these things, in the end I am human.

She taught me to want my Prince Charming while at the same time unceasingly reminding me that no Prince Charming could ever want me, and I fight with myself over the sorry wishing for him, admonish myself that I do not need him...but I want him just the same.

My head knows he doesn't exist, but my heart...my poor, useless, shattered, forlorn heart...keeps hoping despite all evidence to the contrary.

Damned voice.

Damned horrible woman who planted herself in my psyche with roots so deep it doesn't matter how often, how hard I try to tear them out, something always remains to sprout anew.

Tonight it was a kiss.  Not mine.  There are no kisses for me right now and maybe there won't ever be any more, or ones like the one that set her off.  A simple, sweet kiss between two people who love each other impossibly, deeply, once in a lifetime strong and true, and I thought how wonderful to know such love exists.

So of course she started in, reminding me that such a love might be for some but certainly not for me because really, who could?

Fool that I am, I answered that there's no harm wishing maybe someone looked at my lips and wished they could kiss them.  I'll spare you her answers.  She's cruel.

She's cruel and tonight I'm tired and lonely and feeling all of my years and all of my depression is crashing down on me, and in these dark moments I find myself wishing for someone to lean against for a few minutes...and what I have is a pillow to cry into so my kids don't hear me, and my cats who don't understand, and the calm, gentle hand I wish for, the quiet and loving touch, is nowhere to be found, and the only phantom in my head right now is a mean-spirited woman in whose eyes I could never do right.

As I wonder if I will ever know an end to these nights of crying myself to sleep, she laughs and answers "No" with such certainty it's almost impossible not to believe her.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Beggar At the Feast

Not every hunger is physical.

Not every hunger can be answered with a meal.

Sometimes it takes far more.

There is an emptiness that can't be filled by eating, or drinking, or physically consuming anything, but fill it we must or find ourselves starving to death.

Goddess knows I've felt this deep hunger.  I've made mistakes in trying to ease it.  I've compromised because I thought I had to, thought that the only way I'd find a place at the table would be to give up something of myself.

To hell with that.

I'll find satiety on my own terms.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Knowing What to Call It Doesn't Always Help

It's not always some kind of sadness, depression. Sometimes it's being tired, all kinds of tired, tired to the bone, tired in body, mind and spirit, tired to the point of stupid, tired but sleepless, tired, tired, tired.

Tired of thinking everyone else is tired of hearing it.

Tired of feeling it and talking about it and hearing one's self talking about it.

Tonight, as I write this, I am tired.

I was trying to find a name for what I'm feeling, in this moment. Not just tired, but...something...something else.

It occurred to me, just now, that what I'm feeling, in addition to everything else, on top of everything else, a little louder than anything else, is mourning. I feel as if I am in mourning. So sad, and lost, and as if I have lost something only I don't know what, cannot name it, but it's gone and I won't get it back, and maybe I never had it to begin with.

And there's a loneliness to this mourning because I feel so awfully alone.

As the hours grow later, I feel it more keenly, this isolation, this absence of presence.  It gets heavier and I find it harder to breath, and pretty soon I am squeezed so damned hard that I leak out my eyes, hide my face in my pillow so the strange, strangled, keening cries that lurch out of me in fits and starts don't wake my kids.

And in the morning, I get up and move through the day as if it matters that I do, move through the day in a sort of daze, on auto-pilot, doing the things I should be doing because someone, somewhere, says I should be doing them, and I can't feel anything but this sort of lost, lonely, mourning misery, and no one can see it because I'm that good at hiding it and they don't want to see it or know about it, do they, because it's all so stupid and boring, and what right do I have to feel this way, anyway, shouldn't I be grateful for the life I have?

I can't touch the life I have.  It's all around me and I can't feel it.

I try to remind myself that I'm really better off than so many who feel this but don't know what it is, but you know what?

Knowing this monster that's trying to devour me whole, knowing what it is and what it does?

Doesn't mean a damned thing when it has me in its teeth.

Monday, August 22, 2016


Most of the time, I like to cook.  Especially baking.

I like the way my house smells when I'm baking, and I like to give baked goods to people and watch them smile and enjoy some home made goodness.

Even when I don't especially feel like eating, I like to cook.  It's one of the ways I show love, cooking for and feeding people.

Sometimes, though, I just don't have it in me.  It's not that I stop loving my family and friends and complete strangers, it's that I can't reach that love from the beige place where my psyche occasionally dumps my ass.

Whatever my feelings about food are, my kids have this unreasonable desire to eat.  More than once a day, even.

I know!

Anyway, on nights when I'm feeling particularly lay or off, I make breakfast for dinner.  The kids want that to mean waffles or bagel, and I oblige.  Tonight, I decided that for me it meant making a little more effort and having eggs and home fries.  My kids didn't want any, because they're apparently philistines.

It'll do.

Do you ever eat breakfast for dinner?  If so, what's your favorite?

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Music On My Mind

If you've been reading this blog for a minute you know I'm a wee musical.  There's almost always some kind of song running through my head.  Sometimes I have an extensive playlist in there, and sometimes it's just one or two songs over and over and over and over and...you get the idea.

I have this idea that the music on our minds when we aren't thinking about it is trying to tell us something.  Music soothes, it agitates, it hurts, it comforts, it offers an outlet for expression unequaled in this world.  When words fail, music speaks.

So this morning I woke with a few songs taking turns on the inner part of my noggin.  
First was this:

 Then this:

 Then this:

What's that about?

Meanwhile, what kind of music have you been listening to, in or out of your mind?

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

To Sleep, Perchance to Dream...But First, To Sleep

Well howdy!
You know that nifty thing we call "sleep"?  Most folks do it pretty much every night for hours on end.

I used to.

Boy, oh, boy, do I miss that.

I slept some on Friday night.  A few hours.

Then I was up through Sunday, and not for lack of effort...er...non-effort?...on my part.  Then I slept Sunday night.  Haven't slept since then.

Yeah, me!

Not sleeping plays havoc with my appetite, my emotions, and my cognitive abilities.  There's a reason that sleep deprivation is popular among the torture set.  The last time it was this bad (worse, actually, but who's keeping score?), by the end of a week I could see the walls breathing, see flashes of light and color usually beyond human ken, could hear the whispers of creatures that weren't there, could hear voices from other dimensions, could understand languages never spoken by human tongue.  

On the plus side, I have certainly been catching up on my reading and watching of the Netflix, the cats are feeling very much loved because I pet them all night, and there are worse things than smelling of lavender oil (Mom gave me some - putting it on the soles of one's feet is supposed to help with the whole going to sleep thing).  Yeah, that's all I've got for the pluses.

So how's your sleep, these days...er...nights...er...whatever...?

Monday, August 1, 2016

Counting Down to Nothing

Was it only seven years ago that I hid my face and you pulled my hands away and kissed me so deeply and my toes curled and my head floated and everything was possible and it was all before us spread like wings ready to carry us into the glorious sunrise?

And was it only seven years ago that I lay like that beside you, curled into your side , you arm wrapped around me and I was safe and warm and slept like I hadn't slept in years and nothing could touch us and we were incandescent and unstoppable?

And was it only seven years ago that I listened to your heart and your murmuring voice and we watched the night slide past the window and never counted the minutes or hours because we were outside of time wrapped in sheets and blankets and each other and music?

Was it only months later that your rage first burst through the veneer and shattered everything with hateful words and drunken slurs and for hours paced the hall and rooms and circled itself and us and snarled and glared and accused and finally left me ignored and alone wondering what the hell happened so I could be sure never to do it again, but it wouldn't matter how hard I tried, would it?

Was it only six years ago that I told you we'd made a life and asked what would we do and you walked away for a few minutes and came back and wanted to keep on and a moment more for you to find the joy in it and me wondering if I'd done the right thing in telling you and should I have been quiet and made it all go away but I can't do that, it's not in me to do that, and anyway didn't you say yes, let's do this?

And was it only six years ago you put your shaking hand on my swollen middle, grossly distended and writhing with the child within and felt her press herself against it and give a mighty shove as a hello to her Papa and you wept and grinned even and I felt utterly alone because your smile was for her but not for me and the only reason you wanted to touch me at all was to feel her and you had been so angry, spoken such angry words, had such angry eyes and when you were done touching her through me you turned your back on me and left me bereft beside you?

Was it five years ago that she came into this world, a lithe, wriggling, howling little girl who immediately became the focus of everything until she kept you awake at night, until she needed attention that stole from your pool and you shouted at me to keep her quiet and goddammit, you were so sick of the whining and I answered yeah, and the crying baby doesn't help, either and you exploded into dark fire and I turned away and sat with her, rocking, rocking, rocking, listening to your vitriol and letting it wash over, wash past, flow through this house like a river, holding her close and singing endlessly while she slept unaware of what you used to be or what you'd become and just so small and perfect and ours?

And weren't there those days, those few horrible days, when it could have been cancer, or not, and we'd find out, and there was a procedure that meant no sex and somehow that turned into me rejecting you and you were angry, resentful, bitter and I was left alone to wait for the results while you stared at the computer screen and wrote sweet, secret words to some other woman who mocked  and jeered at me without my knowing and fed your ugliness so it grew large and threatened to smother me and I couldn't even give voice to my fear because somehow that would mean I didn't care about you and was just selfish?

Was it only four years ago that you had to go live in another place, still tied to us, still of our life yet of your own because your anger had become another resident here and we couldn't survive or thrive with it crawling through the walls and oozing around our feet?

Was it three years ago that you began to disintegrate and I didn't understand why but I knew what I saw wasn't right, wasn't you, but you, but something else was shaping you and it wasn't love any more and your eyes were wild and your words accusing and spiteful and everything and everyone was against you and there were lies and secrets building walls around you and somehow, somehow, somehow it wasn't your fault and everyone else did it and I was the chiefest among them, never knowing what it was I did to make this monument of misery that caged you in?

Was it two years gone that you called me and I didn't recognize the number but took it anyway, against my nature, and heard the recording from the jail and went cold and couldn't feel my legs or face and my mind went numb and I accepted the call and you told me you'd been arrested and it was wrong and all the things you needed from me, that I had to do, and I cried for days and you raged at me over the phone because I didn't know how to do this and tried but it wasn't good enough?

And was it only two years ago that I forewent medication so the money would be there for you, for bond and books and snacks and phone calls to me and phone calls to other people and I drove every week with our daughter to see you but you still insisted that I didn't care about you and nothing I said or did could convince you and I started to lose the feeling in my toes but it wouldn't have mattered to you so I didn't mention?

Was it only one year ago that I couldn't see the end, couldn't find my way out of your anger and hateful words and looked forward and saw only a bleak future trying to protect my children from your addiction to anger, the bitterness and horrible words, when I chanced to look into the mirror and saw a worn, grey, tired face staring back out at me, dead eyes telling me everything that I already knew?

And now...now that it's over and I've been alone, alone, alone all this time and fighting to stem the tide and finally given way and let yet more anger crash over my head like storm-built waves and cried damn near every night as I thrashed restlessly in the bed that was once a haven and a joy but now is a reminder of how alone I am, cried because there's no arm to hold me, there's no one to lean on, lean against, tell my dreams to, laugh with, touch and love and it's me and these kids and now you have sweet words and see the pain you've caused and want to make it right, but now, now, now I am empty and trying to see myself but I can't look in the mirror because I still see that used up, useless person and I need to be someone else, I need to shine and I cannot shine in my own eyes and I wonder if I will ever shine again, for anyone, ever, and will there be an arm around me that is the warm, loving, cherishing, comforting arm that I so need, desire, want, offering a few minutes' sanctuary from the world, from my mind.