Writing Joys

Writing is something I never wanted to do when I was younger. I always put off to the last-minute anything that had a due date. I always needed to feel the pressure before I bothered to put pen to paper. Looking at myself now? I cannot believe the amount I have written in the last few years! Now? Now, I am a writer.

Writer? What does that mean? This is a blog, after all. Aren’t we all writers? Maybe. For me, it’s having that impulse, desire, can’t stop what I’m doing, have to finish, feeling of putting thoughts on a screen. That uncontrollable urge to share my thoughts, my desires, my dreams. It’s an obsession of sorts.

I started writing as an outlet, a way to speak. My muteness in my life was killing me and I needed a way out. As I carefully began to write, as I began to edit everything that came out of my mind, I began to see that my writing was still stifling me. I was still unwilling to be vulnerable; I was unwilling to be honest with myself. I feared what others might say or think, and I had no strength for rebuttal and no knowledge of how to deflect anything negative. It was hard.

Then I started letting myself breathe more. I began writing only to myself. I began being honest and vulnerable, with the knowledge that no one would ever read it. Occasionally I’d put something I liked out in public, or I’d find myself editing something more personal and put it out there. Slowly I began to trust myself and I began to write more often.

I began to be a writer. I began to love my writing. I was finally finding my voice and it hurt. It was a wonderful pain, though; the pain of growing. I began to love the challenge and my words began to flow. Writing has become such an outlet for me now that I would rather, sometimes, to sit on my computer for hours than do anything else. When I write, time is still, meaningless, years go by in my mind. Sometimes I am only a child, others I am here as I am now. Time has no meaning at all. When I write, nothing else matters.

Now? Now I remain vulnerable but I am willing to put some of it out there. Now I am truly letting the unknown masses see peaks into my soul. It’s scary, it’s frightening, it’s often terrifying, but I keep doing it. Why? Why do I put myself out there? By being honest, others may find the courage to do so as well. By living into me; I give others room to be authentic. When I am able to give words to something tragic, when I am able to give others their voice, it makes all of my fears and tears worth it.

Writing? Is it worth it? Yes.

thanks for reading,

me

Time?

Time. Time is a wonderful, terrible thing. It is always moving, never ending, never waiting. Time, forever, like an engine moving forward. Time, a friend to pull you out of yesterday, an enemy to throw you into tomorrow.  Time, uncaring, unstoppable. Time is the great equalizer.

“Precious time, oh how I long for you to move quickly or slowly. How I long for you to work for me.”

“Time, why don’t you slow down for a few. I want to stop and breathe. I want a chance to collect myself before you move on.”

“Dear time, please move quickly to this, I cannot wait longer! I want so much to be there already. Dear time, why don’t you listen to me?”

“Time? I know you are there. Why is it you do not listen? Why don’t you act as if you care?”

Time speaks, “Oh but I do listen, it is you who do not understand. You need for me to move you from your past.  Your past?  It kills you.  You need me to pull you to the present, you’ve been in the past long enough.  The future? I never go there. That is but your imagination. I cannot do anything other than bring you to now. Right now. There is no other place than now.”

“But Time? How come I cannot go there? The future? I want so much to be done with this now.”

Time speaks again, “There are rules that must be followed. No one escapes these. I wait for no one and I always move forward. There is no choice for me and none for you. Accept this and life is better.”

“Accept this? I want only to relax and to live. I want to skip the rough stuff and move on to the good. Is this wrong? Why is it is so hard to live? Time, you scare me.”

“If you learn to accept me then life will be simpler. Recognize that I can be your friend. If you accept who I am and allow yourself to be with me this moment and no other you will find life in a different light.”

“Time? You are a seductress, You want me to be with you and not fight you. How is this good? I’ve learned from my past and I do not trust well.”

“Leave your past! It does not empower you. Trust me, I am older than all things. For nothing has ever existed without me. There was no before Time. I know you and have always been with you, learn to be with me. I am the one who pulled you through your past, I am the reason it is no longer yesterday. Be with me, you will not regret it.”

“Thank you Time, for pulling me from then.  Life was very bad.”

“You cannot win a fight against me, but then neither can those who hurt you.  To you I can be a friend and to them an enemy. The choice is yours. Accept me and we will go through this day, this moment together.”

“Yes, Time, I will try. Please do not abandon me.”

“I have never abandoned you. Those moments when you do stop and breathe, when you notice the sunrise, the sound of the ocean waves. Those moments when you are not afraid. Those moments, those are when you feel that I go by slowly. Those are the moments when you allow me to be with you, when you do not fight me. When you accept me then your mind is quiet and the chaos is at bay.”

“That was you? I didn’t know. Thank you.”

“Shall we then? Let us do this life together.”

“Yes, Time. Let’s do.”

thank you for reading,

me

My Cry for Help

I wrote the following long before I ever knew the depth of my pain, long before I ever spoke to a soul. I had had a hint of freedom that lead me to write this… I hope that my life can be a light to another’s.  Enjoy?

 

I search, I scream, I try to find a way out.  My dreams are haunted, I’m lost, terrified.

“Please someone, please help me.”  I can’t see, I can barely breathe.  Where is the air?  How did I get here?

“Someone please, please help me out!” I’m so lost, I don’t know my way.  Where am I?  I wish I could see the sky, but I’m blind. The birds? Do they sing? I can’t hear their song.

“My dreams? Please don’t ask me about my dreams.  My dreams don’t come true.  They can’t, my chains are too strong, dreaming just makes things worse.  What do I dream?  I can’t, it hurts too much.  Please, please don’t ask me that.  Don’t make me dream…the chains they hurt so bad.”

Air? Is that air? Sky? No!  I can’t look.  Oh, but the air is so sweet, and the sky is so bright.

“No! It only makes it worse!” Don’t give me air and sky, I can’t keep them.

“Go away, please go away.  Please, please.”

“What do you want?  Why do you hurt me so much?  I belong here, in my cage.  I belong here, with my chains.  Don’t help me, please, please don’t.”

It hurts too much. I didn’t know. I didn’t know I couldn’t breathe.  I didn’t know I had chains on.  I couldn’t see the cage.  I didn’t want to know.  Why did you show me?  It hurts so much more than it did before.  I was almost dead, why did you wake me?  Why did you set me free?  You are so cruel.  I didn’t know what it was like to be free.  I didn’t know what I was missing.  You cursed me!  I can’t stay free!  Why did you show me!  I didn’t want to know what it was like to be loved.

I screamed, I yelled, I begged to be free and you came, you showed me how.

“I hate you.  I hate you for showing me.  How dare you show me what I can’t have!  I hate you!”

My chains are heavier than they ever were before you.  My cage is smaller, my air is sour.  I at least thought I could breathe.  I didn’t know I was in hell. I just didn’t know.

You say I can.  Really? How?  You say it is my right to breathe?  To be free?  How?  By going through hell first?  I don’t want it.  If this isn’t hell yet, then I’ll just stay here.  I don’t want worse.  You still believe in me?  You say I can be free?  I don’t believe you.  You are wrong.  You all are wrong and I am right.  How can you all be wrong?  Is there really enough air out there?  Will I be able to see the sky? Hear the birds? Breathe?

“Help me!  I’m so alone! I can’t find my way.  Please, please help me.  I can’t do this alone.  I’m so scared.  I don’t know how.  I don’t know what to do.  Please, someone, please help me!”

thank you for reading,

me

ps.. the sun, the stars, the birds, the fields, the sky… they are all very, very real

Standing at the Gate of Hell – Part 1 of 2

A story I wrote – It’s long so I’m posting in parts.

Walking Through the Gates of Hell…

Here she was hanging out with no idea she was in hell…
She was tired, and depressed, she had no hope, no willingness to live, no reason to keep on going.  Nothing went in her favor, everything was against her.  The world was dismal, dark, there was no sky, air, no trees, flowers, just darkness…except for this tiny spark of something that just sort of sat in her gut that when she focused on it she began to get a little bit of hope.  Yet the hope was too much, and so she closed her eyes to it, shut her brain off of it… she wouldn’t see that spark for days, for weeks, for months… but once in a while that spark would glow. Once in a while she would get a glimpse of something, a sunrise, a sunset, a baby bird in a nest. Something would catch her attention and she’d smile and she’d forget all of a sudden that she was living in hell. She had no clue she was living in hell.  If hell was anything to define, she imagined it’d be much worse than what she was living.  She was wrong.

But there are different stages of hell I imagine, hell being kind of nice sometimes where you just can’t do anything you want to do. Where you just give up on everything. Hell being a place without love, a place where there’s no hope.  Hell being a place to lose hope. Often people go to hell full of life, no idea that things are going to change.  The day-to-day ho hums of life they live in, hell is just so normal and so blah and nothing exciting.  But then there’s other stages of hell.  Stages of hell  where you know you’re in hell.  Where there’s screaming, and biting, gnashing of teeth, blood, and broken bones.  There’s crumbled china, crumbled bodies. There’s the place where you scream and no body hears. There’s that hell too.  And every once in a while she found herself there.  She found herself screaming, on the verge of crumbling into nothing, found herself crying and not knowing why.  She was just wishing, wishing that death would come sooner. Still when it was back to the calmer hell, she’d be like “oh, OK, I can handle this”, again.  And so she was happy with her ho-hum, no love, boring, unhealthful day-to-day life.

Except some years those visits with the harder hell would come more often, and some years those visits with a glimpse of light would happen too.  And so she started to think, that maybe the glimpse of light might be better, might be possible to see more than every couple of months, or on a weekend when she was a way.  She started to think  there was something else possible.  She doesn’t know when that thought started, she doesn’t know how many times she thought about it, or how often she dreamed of a better life.  It just sort of crept up on her, kind of like the warmth of a sunny morning.  The sky just starts to brighten slowly, and the air warms, there’s still ice on the grass but you know that it’s going to be a warmer day because the sun was coming out.  Those kinds of days happened every once in a while and she started to believe again, in something else, even though she wasn’t sure what it was she was believing in.

So what does a person a do? What does she do? How do you decide to start living when you’ve been dying all this time? How do you decide that you’re going to live one day? Instead of go to that hell that you know is hell every couple of months? How do you realize that the hell that you’re living in is really just another hell, a trick, a lie, another excuse, to not be alive? What do you do? When that shows up on you? She didn’t know, she didn’t know what to do.  She just started hurting more in the little hell she was living, it felt worse.

It wasn’t like it changed a lot, but when you see something you really can’t un-see it. She’s smart.  She couldn’t lie to herself very well, not when she realized she’d been lying to herself for years… she didn’t realize , or she didn’t believe, there was anything else possible… she just lied to herself and understood that every body’s life was that way and everybody had their skeletons in their closet and everybody had their difficult marriages, their husbands that didn’t love them, their children that didn’t respect them, their wives that treated them like crap… she knew that people lived horrible lives, at least she thought that people did… Every once in a while she’d see a couple that looked like they were happy and she’d think “what are they hiding… there’s no way they’re that happy…” she’d think it’s not possible, they must be hiding something, or she’d think ”just wait a couple of years, you’ll regret it one of these days… not the children of course, but you’ll regret the marriage”, ”it happens to everybody”, she says to herself…

So what do you do? When you realize you’re living in hell and you don’t know where to go, and find out you’re all alone, you are in a house that doesn’t show any love…in fact its borderline violent, you’re scared all the time, you don’t know why you’re scared, but you are…so what do you do when your living in hell? How do you get out… she had no idea… so what did she do?

She tries to leave.  That apparently was the wrong way to do it, because leaving hell wasn’t possible.  You have to grow out of hell, you can’t just walk out.  You can refuse to walk in, but to get out of hell you’ve got to grow.   One step at a time.  She didn’t know that then, but she does now.  So what did she do when she tried to leave?  What happened to her?  She found herself abandoned and alone yet still surrounded by people.  People who were supposed to love her. She found herself wishing that she could just die, because there was no escape.  She tried.  She was left crying at her church, no one bothering to figure out why.  She cried out to her family, they had no idea what to do. They loved her but they didn’t know how to help.  Her father suggested she figure out something, make her life better, so she doesn’t need to be in hell.  She didn’t have any idea what to do.

The one thing she was, was stubborn.  One of the things she got punished for the most too. The things that are a person’s greatest characteristic are also a person’s greatest downfall.  Goes both ways.  Her stubbornness is what kept her in hell so long in the first place.  She just couldn’t believe it was hell, she refused to believe it.  Her stubbornness is also what will get her out.  So what is she going to do now?  She knows she’s in hell.  She tried to leave.  Hell grabbed her, kept her close.  Hell said “here, go kill yourself.”  Hell said “here, you don’t need anything.  Throw away those things.  They’re not important because you’re not important”.  Hell made her believe that her things, her life, her health, her happiness, her clothes, anything that she had was not hers.  She was not deserving of it. Basic needs, food, water, taking a shower, getting dressed, why do any of those things? You’re in hell.

Thanks for reading… more to come.

me

 

Scared

Scared.  What is it that is so scary? The leaving, the going it alone? The chance of being hurt, physically, emotionally? The fear of making a life long mistake?  The fear of the unknown.  What if you had done something different? What if you had tried just one more time?  What if you didn’t give up? Give up?

They say insanity is trying to get different results by doing the same thing over and over again.  If you’re like me you have done everything you could think of, you’ve tried what others have suggested, you’ve done everything in the book… Speaking of books, you’ve read them all too… Maybe you were too sensitive or maybe you really did misunderstand? You can question yourself until you die but it won’t do any good because the truth is you really have done all you are capable of and you really do deserve to be happy and it really does take two to make a relationship better.  I’ve said I’m on this train and it’s your choice to either get on with me or get run over.  My husband decided not to participate.

Truth is you made the best decisions you could, given the circumstances. Given the way life was, it made sense. Sure, some of those decisions weren’t really good in the end but that’s OK too.  So many of us are used to being held to an impossible standard, first by those who we thought loved us and then by ourselves.  Does it really make sense to expect perfection when you don’t even have all of the information? Why is it our spouses didn’t have to live up to the standards they expected of us?  If yours is like mine he expected quiet when he wanted quiet, to play when he wanted to play, sex when he wanted sex. He wanted so many things but he never actually told me what it was… “If I really care I’d know him well enough to actually know what he wants.”… I’m sorry. Last time I checked I don’t read minds. I’m fairly certain you don’t either.

So why are we scared? We are scared because it makes sense to be. Finally we are listening to our own feelings and finally we are discovering that they actually mean something. We have been led to believe the impossible and so when we are confronted with truth it’s hard. It’s time to get to know ourselves. It’s time to figure out on our own whether we like country music or Japanese food or whether we like swimming or the color green. We have been told what is good and what is right, it’s time we decide that for ourselves. We wore things he decided he didn’t like and then tossed it away. We have kept our hair long, or short, because of how he reacted to it. We have let every decision we ever made be based on whether he approved or not. It’s time for a little insubordination, is time to try new things, meet new people, play new games, wear different clothes… Get our hair done or have our nails painted. Or maybe we won’t. Maybe we’ll put our foot down and decide we are good enough, absolutely perfect, just the way we are.

What we won’t do though, ever again, is cower to a childish, pig-headed bully. We won’t ever put up with that again. We will learn how to take care of ourselves and we will do what we have always known was the right thing to do, what we were afraid to do before. Our children will respect us more because they will see our transformation and they will learn from our mistake. They will learn to have a certain amount of love and respect for themselves that will help them in their lives. They will be able to hold their heads high because they know that they are worthy. You and I are worthy.

We deserve to walk with pride, a certain self-confidence that others will envy. Think of it this way, the only reason you are alive today is because you chose to be. You could have called it quits many times, when you were harassed or abandoned. Even the fact that you didn’t kill him, that in itself is something to be proud of. You didn’t act on your hate, because I know there was hate. It’s impossible to live for years with someone who constantly chastised you and not hate them sometimes. And if you didn’t hate him it’s likely you hated yourself. Take pride in the fact you chose to live. Now it’s time we learn how to live our best. Now it’s time to love ourselves.

Wrote this a while ago, but felt that it might be of help…

thanks for reading,

me

The Beginning of Peace

I’ve been writing almost constantly.  I’ve been confronted with my past and I am finally in a position to look at it more closely.  My life is an amazing life.  I have had opportunities given me that most have never seen.    I have lived in different countries, known different cultures.  As a child I was given the room to explore and to learn.  Nothing was denied me.  Sure, I wasn’t given things, but I was encouraged to think and to never give up. I was encouraged that if I wanted something bad enough that there wasn’t any reason I couldn’t work my way there.  Everything was possible.  I was allowed to believe that I could be anyone I wanted to be.  I could be the president or the carpenter, all I had to do was believe in myself and to never ever give up.  My parents let me learn what I needed to learn.  They always gave me encouragement to try new things.  Yet they always encouraged honesty above all us.  If I was to do or be something I was to do it with integrity.  They gave me all that they could give me.  But in the process they gave me freedom.  The freedom to make mistakes too.  Unfortunately the freedom they gave was to a child.  A child who didn’t have the ability to always make the right decisions.  And so I made a bunch of bad ones.  Now, three decades later, some of these things have decided that their time has come….

Our bodies have a way of getting what they want, either that, or they just quit.  If we don’t feed ourselves they yell, if we don’t drink enough they slow down.  If we constantly ignore them they finally begin to scream, it may take years before you hear it but they do.  They scream.  My body’s screaming finally became loud enough that I couldn’t hear anything else.  So, given the support structure I have already designed for other reasons, I decided to take the time to listen.  I decided to speak my secrets quietly and authentically.  I decided to face my demons head on.  I really thought that I could handle it.  I was right, but not like I expected.

Demons.  What exactly are demons?  The Frank Perretti books show demons as physical beings that cannot be seen.  Physical beings that if you could see them look just like the pictures in story books with their ugly faces, wings, and talons.  These demons would attack someone who was a threat to their king.  They would literally hook their talons into the skin of the backs and shoulders of those who needed to be stopped.  These demons would fight over the souls of the saved and would whisper in their ears discouragement and lies.  They would whisper things like, “you aren’t good enough”, “murderer”, “you have no right”, “you are stupid”, “they don’t love you”, “you are worthless”…. on and on until their prey would fail and quit and so no longer be a threat any longer.  These demons only have power because they are unnamed and unrecognized for what they are.  Their names are Fear, Blame, Guilt, Hate, Murder.  They have no real power because of their lies.  The person they are attached to is a threat because they know they have no real power.  The only power a demon has is in its secrecy.  Once a demon has been known it can no longer keep hold of its victim.  The victim, though, is weak and must heal or the demons will come back.

Some of my demons are Blame, Hate, Anger and Fear.  These and I have had so much time together they seem like old friends.  I know them better than I know myself.  Their talons have been in my flesh for so long that the wounds that they made are festering.  As such, my body has been screaming and now I can finally hear it.  For every bad there is a good.  If this weren’t true I would be doomed.  The angels fight and when recognition comes they gain power and so their fight has finally turned in their favor.

For all of these years the demons have been whispering into my ears and the angels have been yelling to be heard.  They have been yelling so that I would hear the truth instead of the lies.  These little thoughts that run across my mind, things like. “I can do this,” “Be gentle with yourself”, “trust your gut”, “believe in yourself”, “you have permission to cry”, “permission to be still”, “permission to love”, “permission to say no”… each of these was countered by my demons.  I could hear them both.  For so long, though, the whispers of the demons were so much louder than the shouts of the angels.  The demons’ whispers would use my life’s evidence against me.  The demons would scare away those who I wanted to lean on.  Or they would convince me that I was not worth the effort.  The only choice I could make was to quit.  I quit listening to my heart, quit listening to my soul, quit feeling, quit thinking and tried to forget.  In self-defense, I quit.  I may have quit but the angels never did, and somehow I heard again.  Somehow I felt the possibilities of peace and of hope like a whisper, like a breath of fresh air.  This whisper was different, this one was not scary.  These whispers started to grow in my stomach and have, little by little, gained strength.  They gained just enough strength to let me believe that I could be authentically me, that I could actually face my demons.

Ah, demons don’t like to be shrugged off.  In my naivety I thought I could handle what I started.  In my naivety I thought it would be easy.  I spoke truth and my body shook like a dry leaf in the wind.  The fires of hell found me and began to sear at my body.  My entire being has been put in the coals and as I try to continue, I find that I still have the strength to write.  And so I write.  Facing my demons on paper is only slightly better than facing them in person.  My demons are furious and hungry.  They fly around me and stab me with their talons, scratching me and scarring me.  They are the ones yelling now and they will not win.

me