“Listen as your day unfolds, challenge what the future holds.. ”

       I was awoken a minute early again to the lyrics of a song I hadn’t heard since I was a kid. I didn’t quite know the words, so I waited and listened for them to fill themselves in in my head.

 “Try and keep your head up to the sky.                                                 Lovers, they may cause you tears,     Go ahead release your fears,      Stand up and be counted-               Don’t be afraid to cry”

    Marla began the wake up calls. 

“Herald what your mother says, Read the books your father read;    Try and solve the puzzle in your own sweet time.”

         I pulled my phone out from under the mattress and read Jacob’s last message. A long, fairly irritated one. I had been able to manage to keep my phone to listen to music at night and since he worked Graveyard, we had gotten into the habit of texting most of the night until I fell asleep. And I had fallen asleep in the middle of yet another heated disagreement; but I didn’t know anyways what I could say that wouldn’t get turned around on me. There was no doubt I was crazy about this guy but the closer we got the more we were fighting about every little thing, but I don’t think it would be honest to omit that he was always instigating and I couldn’t ever seem to say the right thing. Of course, because of his  intelligence, intuition, and simply how much I liked him; he also had a way of completely disarming me and stealing some of my common sense, but in mere weeks we had fallen into a consistent pattern of misinterpreting or turning around everything the other one said, him getting mad and ignoring me for days; then trying to work it out with likely unequivocal apologizing. Then I would eventually in a sleepy stupor say something perhaps lame but rather benign, he’d get pissed off and attack, then we’d repeat the make-up process all over again in endless repetition the next day.  But I could never get mad- much less stay mad at him. But I also sucked at feeling at angry at anyone other than myself.

 Jacob was a “sober alcoholic” who had just gotten out of treatment, and was living in a transitional home. So I thought he might somewhat understand the kinds of things I felt, dealt, and struggled with. But I guess we would find out that we only thought we understood eachother, and that was the primary source of the fighting; as though he was convinced he knew me and what was necessary for me to be doing or not doing in my situation, better than I did; given he was a few years older, but in a different  situation, and he was forgetting I wasn’t dealing with a substance abuse that I could simply try to entirely walk away from and not use; I was dealing with battles that resided, originated, and manifested in my skull and skin. 

       The more time we talked the more we realized that though neither of us were prone to dillusions, we seemed from the beginning to have some kind of inexplicable connection- I hesitate to use the word psychic- but you could call it projection in that we began to experience coinciding thoughts, dreams, feelings, and physical states from the distance of some cities. It was unlike anything I’d experienced before, but having just begun studying quantum physics, some of it was perhaps explainable through those means, but I’d never been one to believe in the fantastical regarding human relationships, but many things were simply too freakishly coinciding.     

 We also however quickly came to realize just how starkly we contrasted in virtually every moral, lifestyle, and spiritual value; so we started setting  compromises, but which quickly multipled to the point that we were having to change our convictions and possibly who we each were in order to try and make whatever it even was work. But it hadn’t stopped us from continually going back to how we felt about eachother, regardless of how unrealistic and increasingly infeasible it may have been becoming for anything serious; because the closer we tried to get, the more problems arose. I could only imagine what in person was going to be like- but we had at that point been trying to figure out how to meet up with neither of us having a drivers license; as it were I would have to wait until I was able to gain the ability to get a pass to leave the unit for a few hours. Usually it was supposed to be only with family, but perhaps I could talk Shawna into something. 

        Today was visiting day, my parents and dad’s mom were evidently coming, and we were expected to play a board game together. I could hardly wait… Additionally, that afternoon I received an unexpected phone call from an old friend, who wanted to come and visit me when he somehow heard about my being in treatment again. I had not wanted to have any visitors, but if Nick Vujicic wanted to take time to visit, he was perhaps one of the few people on the planet I could not tell no. Though it felt pretty lame that at that point he was traveling the world as a motivational speaker, helping millions of people- and I was just in treatment again for the same old shit as a decade ago when he last visited me. I remember he even brought a bouquet of flowers, because I’d never been given flowers before or after- never really cared for the sorts of things; But there were Stargazer Lilies, which had always been my favorite since I saw them in bouquets my mom worked on as a kid. But I knew it was no show, Nick was the real deal with a bigger heart than most anyone I knew- despite his circumstances; Which is partly why I still felt so much shame, because I always thought of him and knew that my problems were comparatively nothing; but I still could never seem to get out of them. 



        It was an outing day, which evidently excited almost everyone, but attendance wasn’t optional, so Nice Mom accompanied the six of us to a Target store some cities away. All dressed in black, we probably looked like some kind of Gothic Breakfast Club. 

        I felt like shit as usual, and my ass had practically been dragged out to this Target, so I decided to just sit and try to write or people watch in the Starbucks therein while I waited for everyone to finish their shopping. I was strongly tempted to get up and run while I had the chance, but my legs were too heavy and my chest already too tight; I had to be put on some medication anyways that made me dizzy and nauseous as hell. Writing had already become like drawing blood from a turnip, especially without any cognitive enhancing substances. I was more bitchy, tired, sedate, and frustrated with being forced to eat a diet that didn’t seem to work for my body- particularly with severe blood sugar regulation issues. I already wanted to go home, but that would have only been going back to doing what wasn’t working for me, and I wasn’t currently welcome there; but I felt too exhausted to do anything else- much less treatment. I was already beginning to feel that I wasn’t getting the things I needed physically, and was at my patience’s end with Jacqueline ‘s continual “testing” of it. 

Nice Mom did take us to the gas station afterwards however to get  cigarettes, and on the regular- which smoking was still the highlight of most everyone’s days and nights. I always thought it was ironic, an RN taking us for smokes; but she was nonjudgmental and bought a blowtorch lighter she would for the future enjoy nearly burning our faces off with every light. 

      Weeks began to pass in this normal blur of a routine. Some days I couldn’t bring myself to do anything but refuse to leave my room because my mind continued to feel inexplicably dark and terrified. The proper diet and rest were surprisingly not helping at all with regulating my severe moods or physical pain and exhaustion.  The spells of confusion and dissociation that had first begun with the seizure continued, but I was told that it and the physical pain and exhaustion were in my head. I confessed to Shawna to stealing some painkillers from the nurse station, to which I received only a room search and severe chiding from Jacqueline and Brendan; as well as a locksmith in the next morning to change all the locks. Through some irrelevant means, I inadvertantly got Andre in trouble. More than once. I was legitimately remorseful and ashamed- I’d never felt so guilty as when it involved Andre- but I was also angry and weary of running to stay in place everyday. I didn’t think I could be helped because I didn’t believe they truly even understood or believed my situation; I didn’t even know if I wanted help anymore. I was tired of wasting everyone’s time and good intentions ; and I was beginning to figure out that this place wasn’t helping me, only draining me, and I began to really question why I needed to be there, and putting up an unconscious resistance to treatment which became more evident to everyone. 

        It had been raining heavily for the last couple days, which was a welcome change from the hell that summer always seemed; so while everyone was watching a movie- Sabrina had chosen the first Lord of the Rings and it was at an uncomfortably loud volume to me- so I slipped out into the rain to sit beneath the lemon tree, veiled by darkness in the far corner. I had taken to sitting there each day at some point, usually when I was upset- which was confessedly most of the time. Though he did not meet me on this dark, rainy evening; I had befriended a baby hummingbird that I named Highlighter- because his bright red chest sparkled with a surreal brilliance than I had never seen. But each day when I would go out and sit or lie beside the lemon tree, Highlighter would buzz up a moment later, perch in the lemon tree, and sit with me until I left- however long or short that was, as I usually went out there to be alone to think, pray, or often confessedly to simply weep. 

I laid down on the brick lining of the lemon tree’s raised planter, blinking up into the rain and sighed heavily.

           “God, what the hell am I doing here? Why do I need to be here? This is stupid. You know full well that they can’t help me. They don’t get it. They don’t understand that I’m not just getting up in the morning and choosing to feel like a miserable 75-year old lady; And the many problems I may have with eating or anything else really won’t matter when I feel like there’s really something wrong with my brain; I don’t feel right in the head, and I don’t know what’s going on but it’s scaring the shit out of me. I try so goddamn hard but I really can’t control whatever the hell these episodes are. One minute I’m angry enough to break shit, the next I can’t even leave my room I’m so depressed, the next I’m climbing the walls- literally suffocating, and then I’m fucking asleep; in a nearly endless loop. I need to go home. I need to go back to hiding, there’s no point in people seeing me. Therapists and shit may act like they like me but what’s it matter, no one in the real world would love me.”

I finally shut my mouth and waited for a reply. 

     “You’re right. This isn’t about helping you.” I could have sworn I heard the voice in my mind say.

“So what, am I supposed to be helping someone? How?? I’m apparently doing the worst of the six of us.”

       There was a “secret” whiteboard in the staff office, sectioned off into one for each of us. Leo had the night before peaked through a slit in the covered window and read off to all of us what ours said; everyone was quickly third level in privileges and I had been stuck at  second,not even being the only one to misbehave. Mine was the only one with a new big red “hazard” and the old “suicide watch” written  underneath. They hadn’t even seen a fucking hazard yet. 

       I was still waiting for another reply, when a massive white owl swooped down of the Cyprus overhead, talons outstretched for my leg, which was crossed up over the other. I kicked out to change its trajectory less than a mere foot away from me.

    “What the hell???” 

     I figured it was a rogue event and went to refocus my attention to listening. The owl swooped down a second time, I kicked at it again, then jumping up and making my way across the patio to the lamp by the door; when a raccoon came charging  out of the brush straight at me, between me and the back door. I didn’t want to mess with a raccoon; So I turned right back around, ran around the house, and over the fence to the front yard. In the light of the waxing moon in Aquarius I found myself beneath that great oak, which was accompanied by a few smaller oaks. I saw that one of the oak trees had fallen and now laid across the brick walkway. It’s trunk remained in the ground, but it had been broken in two a bit more than halfway down, seemingly by a great force of which I could not account for. The break had had revealed a large hollow section in the middle of the tree, and upon closer examination of the break, I couldn’t help but imagine it having been struck by lightning, though I hadn’t heard anything so that was perhaps foolish. But I was also struck by an undeniable sense of deja vu standing beside this broken oak. But I got an idea- one I would likely not use for years- but I stored it away in my mind for the proper time. 


         In the evening’s continuation of my new dreaming habit; I found myself again on a stretcher, being rushed to the emergency room- there was blood everywhere- but I couldn’t figure from where it was coming from, as looking down, I saw no wounds on my body. I was wheeled through the hallway, door after door, one bright light after another flashing by from beneath an oxygen mask being pressed to my face, but still couldn’t get enough oxygen. I saw a a few nurses and a doctor moving about frantically, but everything was blurring, smearing their white attire around the closing field of my vision. 

    I then was looking down on myself, rapidly bleeding out from my tongue, that had somehow been cut down the middle, and was now just like that of a snake. I watched the medical team work feverishly to stop the bleeding, but the blood simply kept saturating binding after binding with an unforgettably piercing crimson. My vision began to fade into a thin tunnel to where all I could see was the doctor, who was telling the surrounding physicians that there was nothing more they could do, that I was losing blood too quickly. I saw the doctor administer something straight into my IV port, evidently a chemical that would somehow quicken my imminent passing. I then died; lifting up out of my body with a violent shaking as everything went black. 

        I quickly was met again by the very moment before and watched my life run by, as though playing in reverse on an old cassette tape. I saw countless things that I remembered, many that I had forgotten, and a couple that had never happened. Some moments were played back in a swift blur, while others drew themselves out in slow motion. I saw only two remaining events that had not yet in my memory come to pass. One was something I was still supposed to do in life- but I didn’t know what it was, only that it was there. The second was very clear in its meaning, but I chose not to write it down, keeping it only within myself. 
           The typical nauseating ache in my neck and shoulders woke me the next morning at exactly 5:54 again- one minute before Marla began calling to lineup in our gowns for morning vitals. The moment I stood upright,  my head and muscles informed me that today was going to be a bitch. Amberlyn and Melissa were already waiting there, quickly followed by Leo, Sabrina, and Lizzy. Lizzy proudly announced that she had asked Andre for Chinese takeout for lunch- of which garnered mixed responses and a lighthearted quarrel between her, Leo, and Sabrina regarding the accuracy or fallacy of the Chinese zodiac system.

 I leaned my head against the doorframe, glancing over at Melissa. I had yet to hear her speak, but was briefly again met by the same deafeningly heartbreaking sadness in her soft blue-grey eyes as I had thought I felt before. Amberlyn too tended to keep to herself, but she seemed a bit easier to figure out. She was quiet but raging inside- as is usually the case with quiet people in such circumstances; exceedingly book smart- often causing me to take out a dictionary; a patient and insightful listener of genuine intention; and I saw very similar dynamics between her and her father as I had with mine at her seventeen years of age-  care and provision regarding all things needed, but a relational disconnect spanned by the limited understanding of why she did and felt the ways she did. 

       Morning medications were administered in the same fashion as vitals by Jacqueline- who usually made me wait until last, oftentimes intentionally doing other things after the others to extend my wait. When she did get to me, it was with a roll of her eyes and making only me open my mouth to prove that I took my own goddamn thyroid medication. I did my best to not give her the satisfaction of appearing vexed or impatient- but she misconstrued my future carrying on with my activities about the house as “anxious pacing” anyways. She liked to test me, and that was our relationship. I’m sure I failed her tests more than my fair share of the lot. 


         I stared numbly at a stalk of broccoli   on my plate, engulfed in contemplation of the dream’s meaning- if there was any, and it wasn’t just my mind suddenly projecting such insanely vivid things. My first thought was that if I were to die by the request ever upon my lips, in my heart, and now in the red letters- that perhaps those two things would never be done; but I  couldn’t think of a single thing in the world I still wished to do or experience. 

      “You will find a happiness that you did not believe in,” Lizzy read her fortune cookie aloud that afternoon, from across the dining table. 

“With death will come a new life,” Sabrina next volunteered, over the low drone of Lana Del Rey-         always Lizzy’s choice ; which oftentimes made the dining room sound a bit more like a funeral dirge when no one wanted to talk. 

“‘Newfound independence and responsibility will befall you,” Sabrina read Melissa’s for her. 

“Kind of strangely worded fortunes,” Leo followed. “‘Many miles lie ahead of you.’ The fuck does that mean? I doubt I’m getting out of here anytime soon…”

“You are worthy of the love you find,” Amberlyn shrugged. 

“You will take a pleasant journey to a place far away,” I laughed once and held it out to Leo, “I think ours got swapped.”

“Hey keep it- maybe one day you will take that journey and then you’ll see that stupid strip of paper and think ‘that Leo sure was smart'”, he replied, the moment a water chestnut Sabrina had launched with her fork hit him in the eye. 

“Oh my god… You guys are such children.” Nice Mom motioned for the two to stop. 

I stuck the fortune in my pocket, later taping it in the journal.

“Kaaat!” a voice echoed down the hallway, and reverberated through the entire house. “Kaaat!” Shawna yelled, appearing in the doorway, signature up-to-no-good smile on her face.

Leo feigned a shudder. “Run Kat, the Devil’s calling for you!”

I gave her a “what happened to our on the down low agreement” glare.

“Oh we’re already exceedingly well acquainted… I muttered. 

“Shush.   Session,” she said.


They throw these words around so goddamn easily

I don’t think they know about what it even means

Are you standing on a street corner now

Not remembering at all

How it came about

Or where you are

After driving in the dark

You can’t take a breath

And holding on so tight

Just to draw one more in your chest

But then you lose your eyesight

How can you fight

How will you ever get home now

But nowhere’s home, you’re by yourself

Just wanting to stay on the ground

But you’re floating up and looking down now

Just wanting to be touched

Just wanting to be saved

But you can’t let yourself

Need anyone or thing

When you’ve gotten so far away

And can’t find reality

Someone’s lips are moving

But you can’t hear anything

Longing just to feel

But floating too surreal

The terror and pain inescapable at your heels

Just wanting to be touched

Just wanting to be loved

But no one can make you whole

Because you’ve lost your fucking soul

We throw these words around

And I know we’re lonely now

But how can one get out

When no one can pull you back down?


You know, I would have stayed


I wouldn’t have left you alone

Unless you had asked me to go

Even then, I would likely try and pretend

That It didn’t hurt me as much as it did
I know the signals are always mixed

In the midst of difficult circumstances

But when it comes to how much you matter to me

I said what I meant, not just what was convenient

But I’m also imperfect and will never have an apology that’s flawless

For all of the times I’ll surely say something thoughtless

I wish that I could read your mind so that I could make it better

and be what you needed right then

But I can’t if you are unwilling to help me understand

I know not everything I say is easy to hear

And I have my many faults that I’ll own for sure

But not a word I wrote was ever meant to hurt

I’m always willing to apologize a thousand times, and try my best to change

but can’t if you don’t tell me what I did to cause you pain

I’ll always believe in working out conflicts and misunderstandings

But you just leave again, without saying anything

And I’m left just to wonder a hundred other things

If we are both stones- stubborn and unknown, each again on our own-

You must be a  Playa Desert stone

For I’ve never seen one quite so apt to get up and go

Though I know I can be too

So I may get that part of you

Or perhaps I’m just too young to apprehend the truth

I want to understand you, but could you me too?

I may have A Lesser Darkness dwelling within

Like most of us; but mine is less hidden

We all have our light and our dark

but I had hoped that you could see my heart

And know that light always shines through

I said I love you

And that never changes or goes away

Even in the midst of the highs and lows we all face

Just as the ocean always remains

It is calm and steady, but rages in the same

For the rivers and tides ever ebb and flow

but always return to where they were meant to go

I don’t want to dog you too much

But I thought you would be as close and for as long

As I would Indefinitely be able to carry on

Or be somewhere near

All whether it’s never- six months, or a year

I won’t take or place the blame on anyone

I often feel foolish, feeling like the only one

Who in some subtle way is always holding on

I forget a lot of facts, but never can a face

I’m always looking back on those who just won’t stay

So I’m writing again for you

It’s the last thing I can do

I don’t why you affect me like you do

Surely you must know how deeply this hurts me too

Of course I’ll still be here waiting for you

And for impermanence

Because everything worth it is always


33 Thoughts 

33 things I’ve learned in this past year          (or am still trying to); a reminder to self:

1. Curiosity didn’t kill the cat- idealization did. 

2. Don’t permit nor settle for physical, mental, or spiritual complacency.

3. Rise and move forward with the sun.

4. Meditate, rest, and reflect with the moon.

5. Be love and Let love in.

6. Recognize that pain is a fundamental part of life.

7. Do not depend on others for your happiness or fulfillment.

8. Don’t take energy, give it and what you seek will be drawn to you.

9. Do not fear death, but fear never waking from this sleep.

10. Know that you’re not the only one that feels this way, but you are the only one who can change it.

11. There is no glass.

12. Recognize that no one will meet all of your emotional needs- it’s not what they’re for- neither people nor emotions.

13. A life without magic is the divorce from it. 

14. Pain changes people. Choose wisely your direction.

15. Life doesn’t get easier- just more familiar, and you- stronger.

16. Live your intentions as if they’ve already come to pass.

17. Know that loneliness and company will never be mutually exclusive.

18. Not all spaces are meant to be filled.

19. Light shines brightest in darkness.

20. It will never be the “perfect time.” Go for it today.

21. Your ducks will never stay in a row.

22. Selfish gets less than giving.

23. “Until you learn to be comfortable with being alone, you will never know whether you are choosing someone out of love or loneliness.”

24. You only have to try one last time- but after that, always be sure to try “one last time” again.

25. Don’t be afraid to see the signs. 

26. There are many people and things in this world that will try to put you down- don’t be one of them.

27. Never completely “grow up”- in the societal sense of the word- it’s a trap.

28. Sometimes the largest obstacle in your way is what you “know”.

29. “If you don’t like it, change it; if you can’t change it- change yourself.”

30. Don’t waste time hiding your feelings, no matter how foolish they may seem.

31. “One must imagine Sisyphus happy.”

32. Truth is truth whether we close our eyes or not.

33. You can never truly know the whole story.

January 4th thoughts

        I briefly had this incredibly strange feeling, as the type of knowing sadness when you’re just a few pages away from the end of a long, yet captivating book. The type of book that allows you to escape away from every thing, everyone, and every thought- save for the newly unspoken investment in these characters’ stories, which are now unfolding in all their twists and mystery. It’s that grey silence in your head when you turn over the last page, see blank space, and feel that you could almost miss those characters- only that they never truly existed.

         I consider myself one of those characters, as I just reached the end of this 23-year long book- and then proceeded to burn it. I watched it be consumed and crumble into ashes with a remarkably cold indifference. Now around this fire, my perspective is that of a stranger- as is every person around me. No face is familiar. The past is no longer of any consequence or significance, and if one were to recount the details of that book to me, I wouldn’t believe them. Every principle, moral, courtesy, belief, and faith I thought myself to know or hold had grown legalistic or  obligatory- so it had been replaced or disintegrated out of relevance entirely.

           In attempting to take inventory of what is relevant anymore, the most prominent and undeniable lesson I learned in this past year (and being stubborn, in of course all of the hardest ways) is that the very thing- actually, the very one (God)- I ran from in anger, is the only one with whom my spirit reaches any closer to being home-/or at least not feeling so abysmally alone. The final sign was as clear as being written in the sky, for my stubborn self.

The prodigal son.
The 99 sheep.
One step away.
My first love.
My last hope.

          While I’ve always known these truths in the recesses of my mind, I thought I’d try out mortality’s bind for myself anyways, out of the lack of ability to apply anything else in my essentially drunken, altered state.
       Yet even confirming this, with increasing frequency, I’ve frustratingly enough found found my own spiritually apathetic stupor impeding myself from whole- heartedly participating in this most vital reconciliation. I’ve spent the year denying and running from God, in false hopes to regain some appropriately carnal desire or perspective on what I should be doing with my time, thought, and energy- as if I would find anything. Ha.

      This past year has undoubtedly been the darkest, lowest, and most discouraging of my life thus far. While this is attributable to many things beside my walking away from all faith, all of these hardest lessons can ultimately be summarized by the one:
that Life is to know God and to be acquainted in His spirit.
          I know now that there is no other true salve or satisfaction. No other identity, or company will ever perceive or embrace my soul. Yet I’ve also experienced first hand how oftentimes God will allow (or even orchestrate) the complete shattering of our life, hopes, and hiding places just to bring us to our absolute, desperate end- where we will seek Him alone. Now I only pray for the faith to believe that He will ever put this person back together, or more accurately- that He can still rewrite this completely new, most unfamiliarly unsettling character I am becoming.