1.15 free write

What do I do when even the smallest hope I had falls through

There’s nothing left to hold on to

I thought there could be something for me

Turns out I’m deceived if I believe there can be anything but misery

I don’t understand what You’re putting me through

As if I can really talk back to ask why You do as You do

Maybe I’m holding on in vain to what I only believe is safe

Maybe my perspective has grown myopic

so subjective I don’t even see my own options

But it feels like I’ve already tried most everything else

Just so that I can hide and delay facing my hell

And when I think I descry a distant glimmer of light

Its quickly stolen away, leaving me nothing in its place

But the long past so full of tormenting memories

That I’ll never have back, but for the thorn of its haunting entity

Do I lie, so unlike me, just to try and keep what’s left inside me

Maybe I’m wrong, but I may be right, maybe it’s too far gone for me to save my life

And I’m looking up so maladjusted, just thinking of how I’ve never trusted

Anyone but myself, because they tried but couldn’t help

It always looks hopeless at the end, and that no one will ever know me again

Do my eyes not see right, as I’m wasting all my time

Do I recall correct, or do my assessments tend to forget

Maybe they’re right, that I’m just afraid to see, I may be terrified but could you really blame me

No I don’t think they know me

I want to get better, not just settle

I want to get closer, not just over

I want to disappear, to leave all my fears right here

But buried so deep within my skin, all of these secrets, I’d never let them in

I’ve got to ascend to higher heights, challenge the limits of my mind

But all in the same, somewhere I’ve lost my flame, and I don’t really care for continuing this game

When I’m so disillusioned and confused and all my solutions just end up losing

I’m sorry that it’s so hard for me to believe that the past so far could ever stop its repeat

I need You to show me this, I need You to remember

That of everywhere I’ve been, I’ll ever see a new December.

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1.14 free write

I never really know what to do

Because dreams don’t usually ever come true

Sometimes it doesn’t matter what you get or how hard you try

You can jump from any ledge but aren’t guaranteed to fly

I’m running in circles just hoping for a change someday that maybe isn’t even meant for me

Maybe it’s always been my time but I don’t have the strength to change my mind

For all the same hurts and disappointment

Perhaps I’ll never become what I remember I had once been

It seems too far from my reach

It’s getting so hard and quite boring

Expending so much energy just to stay in the same place

Trying so hard, ending up back at the start, and wanting nothing at all anymore in my heart

I’m fine, it’s just another day

But inside I can’t let go of what I pray

For a miracle, or something meaningful

To make up for all I have lost, and there’s a lot

I want so to change, that I don’t recognize my own face

I want to be taken away so far from this place

Too sick to stay but too tired to leave

These useless behaviors no longer achieve

Anything worth having, there’s nothing to gain

And for all of this sadness, I’m the only one I blame

But so are all our curses, I don’t know how they make it worth it

When it tortures me all of the time

Getting more towards an end that’s like dying

What’s to do next with all this revelation and reflection

Now that I realize my best isn’t enough to change my direction?

10.26 Free Write

Do you ever feel empty and you just don’t know why

Like something inside is missing that you can’t identify

Just going through life’s motions

Looking for emotion

Yet too afraid to try

I know I need to reach for something

something more than I can see

But I can’t say why I always slide right back to apathy

All the reasons that I have to never look back

but the seasons still just pass, time that I can never have

Again, How can so much exist in a person full of emptiness

I know you feel it too, though it comes and goes, as most things do

All searching for another just to pull us from the rubble

of all the dreams we had before, and the things that we can’t feel anymore

I can hold so high but fall and fail all at the very same time

Who can imagine each of our reasons why

I know it sweeps through and steals everything from you

But sometimes we look and can finally see the truth

That each moment that we have to make is all that ever will remain

So ask yourself what it is today you want to take, create, and leave in the wake

Because the sands fall slow, but there’s only so much more time to go.

9.25

We each hold only time

In our weary hands

Which we can neither leave nor find

No matter what we had hoped or planned

But I never could have thought

It would be so hard

Just to carry on

Trying not lose my heart 

to apathy
But I have to find some

reason to believe 

That anyone can be something more

Than all of the failures and things we have known before 

For I cannot return 

to what is left behind 

Even if I still burn 

with this torment that’s trapped inside
Most of the days just seem like another to waste 

As I keep on chasing what was taken away

For reasons of some kind that I cannot see

Peace and hope all the while ever eluding me
But I have to find some

reason to believe 

That I can be something more

Than all of the failures and things that I have known before 

For I cannot return 

to what is dead behind 

Even if I still burn 

with this torment I’ve masked inside
Ever aware of the passing days

To where every care seems to pass away

And feeling so dead keep on pushing ahead

There must be only one thing left. 

P.58 

        Shawna had evidently been spending more and more time on our facility the last couple months, so it was within the hour that I was called into her office with no reasonable defense for my actions other than a childish outburst I had coming.  

“You know this kind of behavior I should discharge you. Then where are you going to live? I think you know this was immature and unacceptable.”

       “Of course I do. I never do anything with my anger. It was extremely uncharacteristic, but I have no excuses.” I didn’t fight her on this one. 

“I swear, anyone else and they would be gone so fast their head would spin, but that’s what you want. But You know most people here want to be here…but I’m not going to just let you go home to keep doing what you were doing.”

        “I didn’t exactly do anything with the intention of getting kicked out for bad behavior, I was unaware that was an option. So you’re not kicking me out?”

“Don’t sound so disappointed, no I’m not- only because I talked to sherice and she said you don’t usually do these sorts of things. Actually, she was even a bit excited that you had finally taken out your anger on something other than yourself.”

    I was silent. 

“No more impulsively wrecking things. I can’t dismiss one more thing or people will start to believe they can get away with anything around here. Do we have an agreement?”

      “Yes, we do concur.”

She even had written up a contract for me to sign- she loved those things. 

“Now that pass isn’t happening for at least another month.”

       “That’s fair.”

“Your Jacob will have to wait,” she continued. “Though I still do not condone your continuing communications- much less meeting. I think it’s a terrible idea and just the little of your conflicts and conversations you’ve relayed, I think he’s going to undo everything I’ve been trying to work on with you.”

         “Thanks for your concern, but I can manage myself the imminent destruction of my limited interpersonal relationships,” I laughed. “I know I have no business in a relationship, but you know nothing lasts, so let me at least see where it goes; I usually never care about anyone, and he’ll be the last guy whose time I’ll ever waste again. ”

“Relationships aren’t a waste- I just think he in particular is damaging for your fragile condition. You already hate yourself, and he seems to be perpetuating that.”

          “Still. The older I get I think I’m realizing that I just don’t like being around people. But I’m not that fragile when it comes to heartbreak. I’ve got bigger problems than the trivial fear of ‘ending up alone’.” Big deal, I’ve already come to terms with that I’m going to be the crazy old lady living up on a mountain with a bunch of bats, or crows, or hell, maybe I’ll just go straight for the shotgun approach.”

“You just keep telling yourself that, but you don’t know yourself at all. I think you care a lot and are terrified of another rejection. That’s why you’re walking on eggshells, tolerating his shaming tactics, and hiding every part of you but what you think he won’t accuse.” 

        “I’m glad you know all about him.” I countered. 

and you defend him…”she concluded.      “but that’s not what I wanted to get into this evening. I have an assignment for discussion. I’d like you to reflect on how your eating disorder has negatively affected your life throughout the years, and try to come up with some new coping mechanisms.”

         I laughed and couldn’t help but roll my eyes a bit, “Sorry, but ‘coping mechanisms’ don’t work. I think if they did I would have been able to make at least one work by now. You should know it just doesn’t work like that. That’s all just a different kind of misery.”

“They can’t work if you don’t want them to.”

        “But if the problem were so easy as to will a distraction mechanism to work better- as though I haven’t tried- it wouldn’t be such an issue would it? But how it’s affected my life? For starters I would preface any lame- ass answer with the fact that foremost: from the outside, I know it’s all fucking retarded.”

“See you’re doing it again-”

         “Come on, I mean who can’t figure out how to properly feed themselves? It’s objectively insane and I understand why most people don’t get it or why it’s so fucking hard; maybe like a migraine- you don’t know what it feels like unless you’ve had one. It’s been by far the worst and best thing that’s ever happened to me; I mean it had its benefits up until a certain age… other than a long hospitalization, It was just fine up until my early twenties where everything changes all over again and you spend a decade trying to readapt to something that will change again by the time you’ve got your head anywhere near the surface in regards to figuring out how to balance it with your life. I managed to cope just fine most of that time; while balancing work, school, a relationship, and maintain my personal peace and sanity; all that normal shit. It’s normal if you’re a teenage girl- but still struggling even worse with it a decade later is just fucking embarrassing. I can’t even live my life.”

“Well it is true that at a certain age it stops ‘working’ the way it used to; and these things do get worse with age if you can’t overcome the insistence on unattainable ideals.”

       “No shit. I’d rather eat a bullet than live another decade into this.”

P.57

        I likely didn’t last another two turns before my thoughts grew too persistent and undeniable to not show evidence on my face. 

        “Actually, can you guys leave- please?” I covered my face, and tried my best to be polite. 

“But we’re supposed to be-” 

       “Please just fucking leave. I’m sorry… I’m afraid I’m going to be awful today. It’s a worse than the usual ‘not a good time”. I turned to look out the window, I hated crying in front of people. 

“Look honey, she’s an adult. If she doesn’t want to see us right now, we should leave,” dad conceded.

“OK. If you need your space, I guess that’s OK. I won’t take it personally.” mom said, entirely unconvincing. 

“Well before you kick us out,” dad pulled a bible out of his briefcase. “I figured you could use one- to go alongside the devil books you brought.”

       “Thanks.” The last thing I wanted to see was a bible. 

He set it on the end table beside the alarm clock as they painfully slowly got up to leave.

          I grabbed the book and returned to the back bedroom. My head had been pounding with the pain in my neck and all throughout my body since just after getting up. It seemed the days with no cessation of the nagging pain had been increasing in frequency. Jacob and I constantly tense and fighting didn’t help , but we were still planning to meet up sometime next week because Shawna had mentioned potentially giving me a pass. But even that, I wasn’t sure how I really felt about – other than nervous as hell because at the same time that I felt so strongly about him, he also made me extremely uncomfortable- like he was always waiting to pounce on something I said and pick it apart and throw it back in my face; and I didn’t feel qualified to tell what of what he said was true tough love, or just straight up cruel. I guessed we’d see how it went then, but I didn’t have high hopes considering how it felt like nothing good or even remotely enjoyable had happened in life in years. In fact, in retrospect it almost seemed a bit too coincidental the order of events in which I lost my job, schooling and career hopes, relationships,  independence, and then health- which had been continually degrading and affecting everything else. I had a roof, food, and water when my parents let me live there- so I had that going for me- but most of the time it felt like I had lost a firm grip on even my mind, constantly falling through the spaces of each day in an unsettling and unsure free fall; so I would easily have given away such life – preserving substances to someone who would at least enjoy life sometimes. I had nothing to go home to anyways but to keep  suffering, medicating, and rotting away in the routine of a responsibly selected solitude to save myself and everyone else from the futility of interaction. 

          I flipped through the bible, thinking how I already knew what it said and didn’t care to read anything. I had felt that way for too long, feeling guilt for it. Job was onto something, as well as Solomon in Ecclesiastes- but other than that I could only relate to Jonah beneath his little tree, asking to die- only I didn’t know where I was supposed to be going or what I was to be doing- I just survived and wandered on  purposelessly. Maybe God was making me wander the desert for 40 years for my bad attitude- and a thousand years may be as a day to Him- but I sure didn’t have that long, and 40 years would put me just about on my deathbed. But with my bad luck I just might live to a hundred. 

         I decided to try the cliche of setting the bible on its spine and letting it fall open, of which I then focused on a random section of the page. I recognize the bible wasn’t intended to be used as a magic 8 ball, but I had some questions- that was for damn sure. Not that I at all considered myself “righteous”, but  it only took Job 7 days to curse his birth, and I’d waited well over seven years. 

          “Why? Why did all of this befall on me? Why did I lose so much and everything that really meant anything to me? Why do I keep losing more, and why don’t you put me out of my misery? Why?”

The book fell open and my eyes first fell upon the red letters of John 13 verse 7

        “Jesus replied, ‘You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.”

I was silent for a minute. “but isn’t that what You said a decade ago? I don’t have forty years to wait and wander, I’m wasting my life now.” 

          I was still angry- not angry at God, He didn’t owe me shit- but at myself and everything else; but I was basically in a perpetual bad mood. I just never did anything with it. I got up and walked over to the window, pacing back and forth for some time. I’m not even sure why there was a hammer there- I guess a worker left it there- but not even thinking about it, I grabbed the hammer and slammed it down the middle of the open Venetian blinds, and through the drywall. And something snapped that I’d been ignoring for long enough- I shattered every last piece of the blinds to splinters, and lodged the hammer back in the wall again. I tore out the  dresser drawers, hurled the few books I had brought at the wall, and sunk back down into the bed, catching myself before I went to hell for chucking a bible again. I laid down, letting it slip from my hands onto the floor. 

          Marisa walked in, pausing in the hallway entrance to give me a look that said “My lips are sealed but I wash my hands clean of this,” and turning right back around to leave. 

         “I need an answer now, not in another ten or forty years…” I  muttered. 

Of course I was surprised to happen to open to such a potentially applicable verse, but I believed that my life had been about paying for something I had done wrong- or was going to- and God or fate had nothing to do with it. Maybe that was why I was still on this planet. 

        I got up and picked up the few  things I had uncharacteristically and foolishly thrown- as though it would do anything to hide the damage I had done to the blinds and wall- and picked the bible off the ground, with a small laugh to see that when it had fallen face down, it had opened to the first page of Job. I guessed that was a decent place to start reading for as long as I was going to continue living in the stomach of a whale. 

****

P.56 the Last Letters

        Early evening had come around for visiting hours and I was in one of my many shitty moods; not in the mood to bug Andre, so I sat in the observation room in the window seat by the oak- which despite meaning more irritated glares from Jacqueline in the staff office- was the only place I could find some kind of silence or solitude when everyone was visiting and I couldn’t sneak out back. But that had been easier than ever since a wishful thought and the one lamp light broke and no one got around to changing it for months. I was waiting for my family to arrive so we could play the board game I had reluctantly chosen, Apples to Apples. Jacob had ignored me for a week again, but we were good for the day. Though tonight he was at his weekly meeting and I didn’t particularly feel like having my ass chewed, so I used the time to speak questions to the air for awhile, or to myself, or God, or who/whatever else was listening. Highlighter had immediately joined me outside the window I had cracked open, perched on the oak tree branch, chirping spiritedly at something.

         Some time later Highlighter flew away and I turned to see that my parents stood out in the lobby, Shawna directing them into the observation room.  I hadn’t seen or hardly spoken to my them in some weeks; I simply had nothing of any point to say to them, or to anyone really. They sat on the couch adjacent to the window where I remained leaned against the window pane. Dad had come from work, still in his suit. 

“How are you?” mom asked hesitantly, appearing wary that I would be too honest.

        “I’m fine. I’m fan-fucking-tastic actually. I mean, relatively speaking.  How are you guys? How’s life.”

“We’re fine. It’s fine. Just working a lot at grandma’s as usual. You’ll have to see all the renovations and the new furniture when you get out.” mom replied, more  animatedly.

        “Cool. Doubt I’ll want to make the trip, I’ll just be honest up front.”  “How’s James?”

“James is OK. Stressed as always. Just started a second job working for Steve.”

       “That’s gonna be trouble, those two together…” I  replied, unable to convey the appropriate humor. 

      Mom talked for a while about the work on the house and all the furnishings things she had purchased at discount as usual. I pretended to give a shit as usual.

“Have you been doing any writing?” Dad finally changed the subject, trying to ask a genuinely benign question. They knew I wrote angsty poetry and whatnot from time to time but had never read anything I’d written. Not that I wanted them to, because it wasn’t for art.

         “No. But I have stared at blank pages for hours before realizing that I just don’t give a shit.”

“Hm. Shawna told us you’re writing an autobiography for her?”

        “So she’s deluded herself. She’ll likely have to pry it out of my cold, dead soul one session at a time. I do feel bad for her, I’m not making her job easier. But hey, life’s a bitch.”

“You know, I’ve always thought you could write a book about your life. Maybe to help some people understand their own loved ones with ‘illness'” he volunteered.

     I hated when he used that word, but I knew what he meant. But maybe He was right; maybe I had just been ill, for a very, very long time.

“You know, the reason God hasn’t answered any of your prayers to die is because you have to write a book first,” he laughed. That had been a long- running joke of ours.

“Don’t say that, ” mom interjected, very hush hush. “we’re not supposed to talk about that stuff.”

       “Well then, give me a pen!” I grabbed the red pen from beside me and feigned a sudden enthusiasm.

        Shawna had specifically instructed each of us that we were to talk about absolutely nothing but small talk- Just my fucking forte. I silently set up the board and divided up the cards, too slowly because I was far, far away in my mind; drowning in all the things I could neither speak of nor resolve

I layed down the first card. “OK, the word is  ineffectual. ‘” 

Only one thing of which, I wanted to ask why they had essentially kicked me out and stranded me in a place where I had no freedoms and the absence of which over the months did me no good but harm. I wanted to know what the ultimatums would be when I did finally get out. I honestly didn’t care about anything but getting as far away as possible from that place. I don’t know why with treatment I could never seen to settle into any manageable routine in regards to my constant anxiety and pacing in my mind “like a caged animal,” Jacqueline called me.       One thing I sucked at in life was adaptation. Pathetically so, with all efforts I could rarely ever get it to happen and I’d never figured out why; as though some of the most basic normal necessities of being human eluded me,akin to needing to draw blood from a turnip. I had only gotten progressively more stressed, tired, angry, and in pain the more I was trapped in the house-cage and around people all the time. I was tired and desperate enough that I had been talking to the Catholic John Doe from the internet about possibly moving in for a while. That would suck too, but there at least I had any freedoms and choices I could execute or manage. But I felt like I was losing my mind as always, but didn’t know where I could ever find it again anyway. 

But I didn’t even want to be anywhere anymore, I didn’t want to bullshit up waiting to see hope in the distance anymore; because as much as a weak, self- defeating cop- out as I know it sounds, I absolutely didn’t believe whatsoever that I would ever get “better”. After over a decade of trying to get “better”, I had only gotten much, much worse in every regard. No amount of treatment programs, drugs, or talk therapy alleviated the constant inner war; and I knew I would never outrun what always came right back no matter where I went or what I tried- I knew I’d always fall back into old ways because nothing else felt any good either, or it felt worse. Surely this all was putting me through unnecessary additional suffering.                          But I knew to say such things was arrogance, despite that I still believed it with every fiber of my being; but I was the only one who believed it, so I was powerless and again being forced into what was “best for me”, still even as an adult.

          I wanted to scream all of these things at my undeserving parents in front of me; how at this point I prayed and wondered every hour why I had been born- called out of the nothingness. I needed to scream for every burden for which there was no relief, for every thing that was misunderstood; I wanted to destroy everything in the room and then destroy myself. But no one would ever know just how much rage I held inside. I never showed it; Because the only person I was angry with was myself. Because I was a fragile, addicted, selfish, hopelessly miserable failure that was beyond help if I couldn’t even imagine a future of better, because all I’d seen better to be was just a different kind of misery, tolerance, and compromise for all the things I hated but lacked the strength to change. I’d rather the devil I knew  until I was finally dead- to do and take whatever the fuck I wanted until it destroyed me; and that was my plan- to hit the wall at the highest speed possible to ensure my  oblivion. Because there had accumulated too many problems with no solutions- so particularly agonizing that it seemed they had been designed for me; perhaps its simply that what you avoid controls you. But I had already tried everything else and beyond a reasonable doubt I had concluded that ending myself was the only way to end this battle of attrition of which I knew there was no  winning, and I didn’t want to be around when it came time to lose for the very last time. 

Of course I recognized that this was the still young and immature part of myself that wanted to actually say any of these things. Objectively I knew that it all would sound lame and melodramatic were I to say it aloud; but I suppose the cliches are cliche in that they are commonplace in truth; but I still despised cliches. But all of these things continued to chew at me as they had every waking moment for a time experientially longer than fathomable.  

“Kat…… KAT,” my dad’s voice broke into my deafening world. “It’s your turn.”

        I looked back at the seven cards in my hand, considering which word I thought best fit the description “mythical”. Between  thunderstorms, Nicholas Cage, my love life, zippers, lethal injection, oxygen, and Samuel L. Jackson; “my love life” was an easy choice. 

“That’s terrible,” mom  laughed.

      “Generational curse,” I fake smiled.    I grew even more frustrated as I could feel the tears threatening my eyes again.

“Are you OK?” she asked. 

        “I’m fine.” I drew another red card.

“OK the word is ‘imminent,'” dad read.