Sideways

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The sound of a door closing, the buzz of an alarm, the ambient waves of a piano

I recoil

Sharp, jagged moods:

pop another pill

sink deep into

Emotional Novocain.

Down the rabbit hole

Clouds of Hazy memory

Float past

Turned down the volume of my mind

The happy demon in my head says

“You are going to die”

climbing up to the 13th floor

twisting in the air

I want to feel the ground beneath my feet again

All these things are true

And contradictory too

I am sideways in the world.

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Clouds and Dreams are Hazy Matchmakers

257px-Irid_clouds1She envisions the rest of her life laid before her, like a barren wasteland.  She crawls through the dust, choking; he is strangling her.  The past lies in ruins behind her; Ahead, in the distance, there could be rainbow lake.  Is it an illusion?  It glitters, taunting her, and she knows it is not meant for her.

She forgot how easily everything can break. Shattered, she can not find the will to put herself back together once again.  Clouds and dreams are hazy matchmakers.  She is frozen.  Death creeps in, stealing her mind silently.

She tried to end her life the day before her wedding day. She was in so much pain it didn’t make sense anymore.   So much so she couldn’t feel anything anymore.  Waking up, she realized she needed to be strong enough to create something, to make the madness have meaning.   She needed to make up a reason to live just to open her eyes in the morning.

“You Kept Me Up with All Your Manic Energy”   – Waxahatchee, “Brass Beam”

 

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I just planned out the next six years of my life.  I am getting married in 25 days, if you didn’t know, dear readers.  So, my manic brain just said, you must do everything now.  And so I listened to the voice in my head – getting well, finances, child, finishing the book I am writing, getting a job, moving to another city, and then back again, getting another job after two years at home with the baby.  Some of this stuff I can’t even predict, but oh, how I have tried.  I wrote It all down as my fiancé slept.  We hadn’t had sex in a week-the longest we have ever gone-and tonight the primal sex sent me spinning.  The dog even thinks I am crazy. I have been whirling through another 1,000 words of writing my book.  My memoir.  I started it Friday – 6 days ago.  Which, in my state of chaos and self-delusion, I think I can finish in 6 months.  I do have 3,176 words in a matter of four sittings.  I twirl my engagement ring on my finger and write and write while thoughts fly.  I am hyper-aware of everything and super zoned in on myself at the same time.  I chain-vape and it feels like I am getting somewhere, even though nothing is actually happening yet because it is just 4am on a Wednesday morning but I think I can take over the world (although this time, maybe I will try it clothed.  See post: “Never throw your cell at a cop and other fun learning experiences”).  I simultaneously can’t collect thoughts and also have an abundance of them.  No, I am not on drugs.  I am on the residuals of sex and mania, mixed together like some forbidden cocktail.  And I have drunk the cocktail as fast as possible, at hyper-speed, actually.  It hits me like a line of cocaine.  My fingers don’t keep up with my mind as I write this.  I am on Hi-fi speed like a scratchy record playing the same part of the song over and over again.  Skip. Skip. Skip.  I jump with a jolt at any idea, and they all sound grand.  Except the financial one, which makes me irritable. Next thing I know, I am raging at Facebook and Trump (like the former matters).  However, on Facebook, I see shiny, bright people with lives that feel so elusive to me.  What is it even like to feel normal? Did I ever even know?  I have enough insight to know I don’t know.  I plan how my memoir is going to win awards, and I will be signing books for those people on FB that I am “friends” with that I don’t even like.  I am amazing.  I feel amazing.  I sometimes question am I happy, or just manic; right now I know the answer, but I don’t care, I just keep going.  My Fiancé comes downstairs and I say “I hope I didn’t keep you up with all my manic energy?”  “No,” he replies,  “I took a melatonin to sleep, so I just came to check on you.”  He probably woke up because of a trippy melatonin – induced dream, I think, and continue on, telling him I have planned out our lives until the year 2023.  He knows I am manic, and so he says sleepily, “That is good.  We will have a good life.”  I laugh and smile, and continue on – why sleep now? It is 5am and so I make coffee because I think that’s what I need, even though I know it isn’t.   It is 5am and I am as electrified as I was yesterday morning, waking up to a nightmare, except in a good way I think.  I listen STILL to the SAME album I have heard 500 times in the last week, except I skip all the slow songs.  That will slow me down, and I can’t stop now.  I can’t I can’t I can’t.  I keep myself “up with all my manic energy.”

Deep Wonderland: Down the Rabbit Hole

The world spins, goes out of focus, becomes a hazy spark of confusion.  I feel like I just woke up from a dream. Fantastic daymares plague me.  Electrified, I sit in silence.  I can’t see myself clearly, or sometimes, at all.  I am disconnected from my life, myself, my emotions.  My life is a hazy, black and white silent film.  A clock strikes 3am, and I go numb.  The buzz in my head is loud—so loud I can’t think.  Thoughts feel jumbled and the world feels strange.  I wonder “is this the end?”  A sharp inhale, and I am flying.  Jagged images float past me, and I reach for them, under the substance of reality.  Sounds are dull and far away.   Vaguely, light slowly, silently filters through as it’s own odd sensation.  Simultaneously, I feel empty.  My soul is outside of my body.  I look back at myself, and I do not recognize myself.  I do not understand; perhaps, I am not meant to fully know the pain. I have gone into deep wonder and fallen through the rabbit hole; The other side is mysterious and dark.

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Never Throw Your Cell at a Cop . . . and other Fun Learning Experiences

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“Loving NOLA Life”

So I went to a new therapist last Friday.  She said something that stuck with me, “You have the ability to compensate.”  Which meant, that despite what is going on with me, I can pull off presenting well.  I can make you think I am ok, and all is well.  Despite a psych hospitalization and using cocaine at the time, I was able to do well in a master’s program and graduate.  Although, I know people thought I was an asshole.  Which probably was the case, although, truly, I was sick.   I think I had to learn to compensate at a young age – I have had depression as long as I can remember – there was no other way to be! This has actually served me well, because It means I have been able to function despite mania, intense depression, drug use, and now, dissociation.  Except the latter proves more difficult to manage presenting well.  People can’t tell, but when asked to do something simple like fill out paper work, I am unable to do so.  I write the wrong thing in the wrong place, and even the therapist looks at me funny. Creative writing or working on a project helps me, though (hence six new blog posts and a new blog design).

Therefore, I have decided to start on something I have always wanted to do – my memoir.  I know I am only 37; but with 5 psych hospitalizations (including many of those for psychosis-including the time I ran around totally naked to save the world, cause if you are a superhero, you should be naked), serious drug addiction and getting sober, a lot of experience traveling and living in many different cities, experience in the BDSM lifestyle/going to the local dungeon, experience as a stripper, nearly partying through “Katrina” in New Orleans and attempting to get out at the last-minute (Chaos!), interning at The National Organization for Women in DC and meeting well-known politicians (Hilary told me “thank you for working on the behalf on women!), Coach surfing on the East Coast and Midwest (with a cat!), hanging out with homeless people and “rainbow kids,” (they are a little smelly, but I love them!), protesting Condoleezza Rice in her hometown (which is mine in Alabama), marching in DC as a protester, being in the middle of a tornado, losing a fiancé when he tried to jump on a train, the fact that any given family reunion could end in a brawl, running from the cops, throwing a cell phone at a cop (don’t do that by the way, it will not end well for you), participating in pagan rituals, dating a guy named “Jesse James” (really, that was his name!), going to jail three times and being propositioned for sex in the holding cell by a self-proclaimed murderer, doing five days in “gen pop” (if you don’t know what that means, that’s a good thing), experience as a therapist myself in an inpatient unit– I think I have something to say.

At least I hope I do.

A Different Flavor of Madness

schiz-y woman

bite down

take another hit

cause it always returns,

haunting. . . .

 

It’s just a different flavor of madness

 

the telephone doesn’t stop ringing

when I pick it up

no one’s there

feels like

God just gave me the finger

 

dementia came on over

she said “let’s go take a ride

to the ends of the earth”

 

It’s a different flavor of madness

 

take a look inside

sanity is just a perspective

 

hanging upside down

is only good for a sick tummy

but it doesn’t cure me

any more then he could.

 

so take a good look inside

before i carve it up

that child was a serial killer

her favorite victim was herself

 

It’s just a different flavor of madness

so take a good look inside

 maybe I’ll find a different reality

where the madness means freedom.

Mental Illness Is a Thief.

I canceled all engagements for the week, including the party I was to attend with my fiancé’s girlfriend (we are polyamorous) while he is out-of-town.  She may not understand.  I don’t care.  I accidentally got high on Clonidine, which my new psychiatrist prescribed to help with debilitating withdrawal symptoms from an anti-depressant.  Although, the withdrawal feels more like something that comes with opiate (i.e. heroin) withdrawal.  Not that I know personally, but I saw it often during my time as a substance abuse counselor.  I am unable – emotionally and mentally – to cook my standard eggs and croissants for breakfast.  I am unable to take care of my dog (although people are helping me).  I am unable to clean my house.  I am unable to do anything.  My fiancé emails the head of a volunteer committee I am on – because I am unable to clearly form the words or I don’t have the energy to do so – to write her and explain why I am missing committee meetings.

I am drowning.

I vape and listen to the same album on a loop (“Out in the Storm,” by Waxahatchee).  I am still not tired of it after nearly a week.  When I get tired of it for the moment, I listen to Cat Power’s “The Greatest” album one time, and then switch back.

The worst part is, I am getting married in 33 days, and I don’t have the ability to feel excited about it.  Or happy.  Or sometimes, feel anything at all.

Mental illness is like a thief; it steals from you.  It is the thief in the darkness of the moonless night, sneaking in and overtaking your brain.  It hijacks my happiness and banishes it. It breathes white-hot despair into my soul.  Mental illness is a thief.

“I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked…”

-“Howl,” Allen Ginsberg

 
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