JFC

“If I didn’t see it happen in front of me, I wouldn’t believe it. Goddamn.”

That is what my witness said to me after it happened. I have proof. Finally I have a witness I have proof.

The place where I work was packed, busy even for a Saturday. My boss asked me to do something as I was sitting at the computer doing other things so I added it to the list of my tasks. One by one I got through most of them when my boss asked me if I had gotten to her thing. I replied “nope! Not yet! Haven’t had a chance I’ll do it right now.” And got right to it.

This woman. This fucking woman.

This fucking woman appears in front of me with her two children akimbo. I had helped the older one once upon a time, been very patient with her as she overcame a very difficult thing. Gently and successfully, much to her sullen, preteen resistance I might add.

This fucking woman.

This fucking woman says to me.

“Watch your mouth around my children.”

My head shoots up, eyes wide. “Excuse me?” Having zero understanding of what she’s talking about since I have said absolutely nothing since responding to my boss.

This woman. This fucking woman.

This fucking woman says
“You were about to say Jesus fucking Christ in front of my kids.”

And I looked at her.
And my witness looked at her.
She said it in front of her kids.

“I absolutely did not say that.”

This fucking woman said Jesus fucking Christ in front of her kids.

This fucking woman.
This fucking woman says:

“I am the queen of cursing and you were about to say it I know what you were going to say.”

I KNOW WHAT YOU WERE GOING TO SAY.

“I absolutely did not say that.”
My witness, shaking their head, shocked. My jaw just about hitting the floor.

The queen of cursing, you say.

The Queen.

This fucking woman thinks that I would respond out loud to a question posed by my boss with the answer
Jesus fucking christ.
This fucking woman thinks that I would respond in front of children
Jesus fucking Christ.
In front of her children. Jesus fucking Christ.

You want to know what was in my head? You think that banal bullshit was what I was thinking at the moment?

You have the audacity to think you could imagine what it’s like inside my head?

The things that I think, the things that exist inside my head would terrify you to a point where you would never, ever, ever say another thing again.

You really think you’re the queen of cursing.
You want to go head to head with me?
I guarantee you will not survive. I will make you rethink your entire existence.
I will make you question your reason for living; I will make you question whether or not you deserve to breathe on this Earth.
I will tell you things about yourself that you know to be true deep down in the deepest fucking recesses of your soul.
I will share with you the reasons your daughter hates you so much (it’s because she looks like you), you narrow-eyed cunt.
Every time she looks in the mirror she sees your face even though her cheeks are full and they’re going to be full for the rest of her life and you are going to shame her for her fat face. Every time she sees you look at her she sees your disgust, feels your disappointment. If you aren’t already saving for her therapy, you should do so immediately.
You ought to just give up on your son because he is going to be in codependent relationships for the rest of his life. He is completely neglected and wishes for a second that he would get some of the attention you give your daughter even though it’s all negative. Honestly it would be better for all involved if you let him go live with relatives. Literally anyone else would take better care of him. You simply don’t give a shit.
You take your anger out on me because you couldn’t help your child. You know that you absolutely do not have the patience to help your own child where I did.
Your daughter hates you so much because you’ve made your husband miserable and he doesn’t fuck you and is most likely fucking your friends. A quick look on dating apps would find him in a second.

You think you’re the queen of cursing? Come at me bitch. I’ve got you I’ve got your fucking number. I haven’t even gotten started with you.

Jesus fucking christ. You think I was thinking Jesus fucking christ? No I wasn’t. My only thought at that moment was how to get to the end of the day without killing myself.

It’s going to get a whole lot worse from here.

evidence

there is evidence of life all around me
physically around me
in my phone
noise and activity and adventure
and fun.
companionship.
i can hear it in the air, in the neighborhood
music and the leaves high up in the canopy
and the cars going by mostly in the right direction
in my messages is proof that life is ongoing
why do i feel so detached from it all

none of it belongs to me.



952am 6th september 2022

I am sitting in my car, unmoving
Right foot on the dashboard
Smoke nearly filling the cabin, rain outside
Grim and grey and compressing me into this small, flattish wafer of a person
I am so alone and I do not want to be so alone but I cannot go anywhere
I do not want to go anywhere I do not want to go out in this
The things that I know will make me happy I cannot find the energy to begin to think about doing,
There is too much preamble.
I think about curling up in the shower and letting the water beat down on me as I lay on the floor of the tub
I think about crawling back into bed and never getting out
I think about my hand my shoulder cramping as I clutch this pipe and cannot smoke enough weed to make me feel better no there is not enough to make me feel better

I do not want advice.
I just want some fucking relief.

1818

a photo of your author, smiling, eight days before my husband died..

If I knew what was to come
what could I change
what could I do
If I knew 5 years ago right now what was to come what would I do.
If I could see this moment right now where I am,
unshowered for days,
sitting outside in a public secret space with my coffee and my weed
the constant anxiety manifesting in different ways now.
I may look calm but I am not.

Everything is so heavy, so fucking heavy.
I could not change a single thing, I know that.

Five years. Five.

I need this time I have needed this time
I need more
time.

(((but where am i?)))

I lose sight, I lose connection
I lose my self

I am unsupervised and there is no corral
no border
no boundaries but the ones I hold to and they are so very shaky
the only (??) difference being that I have become better at holding to them i just*
let go of that terrible, engulfing need
(let go or be dragged.)

or am i just so tired that I cannot summon the effort

I need to think need to believe that this is something I have done that I have wrought within myself
to life, to life.

Salty tears fall; light up, breathe in.
Ex h a l e .

it is all I can do to keep breathing.

*just. as if.

I wish you got to see

photo of your author, no filter.

I wish you got to see me today
I have my new glasses
My curls; the color of the hydrangea we planted out front
and the porcelainberries that grow wild out back.
hopefully soon they will belong to someone else
someone else who will take so many closeup photos of them.

The curve of the tip of my nose
I wish you could see it.
You would kiss it.

Maybe.
Probably.
I’d like to think you would.

742a 5 july 2022

breezy, uncertain
i woke to grey light, dim
the temporary buoyancy of yesterday,
the day before
gone.
sometime in the night it left,
stole away, slunk away
embarrassed to have lifted only to leave
“i’m sorry,”
whispers on the breeze
“i’m sorry, that wasn’t for you.”

i’m sorry that wasn’t for you.

my shoulders all wound together
knit together, snicked tightly, bound.
the hand that holds my pipe tensed and clawed
the tips of my fingers white from the pressure

unclench your hand, look at your fingers.
sit up, you don’t have to get up.
sit up straight, you can stretch.
you remember most of it.
take in deep breaths of this shaded air
look up
aggressively blue sky hidden (thankfully)
mostly by the canopy
there are a lot of silvery clouds breaking up the blue

today feels very uncertain,
I feel the mania pulling my shoulders together
i will do everything that I can but there is only
so
much
available.

yesterday. 30 july 2022

salt-fired porcelain dish that reads *RAGE ON*

I have all of this proof
Physical proof of how good I am, how talented, how good, how kind.
I have emotional proof.
People say lovely things, in front of other people.
About me they say these things. Lovely things in front of other people.
It can be an entire day of people saying lovely wonderful things about me, showing how much they appreciate what I have to offer.

And all it takes is one motherfucker to bring it down.

I was already in trouble when I woke up yesterday morning.
My only goal was to get home to Mojo.
To keep that in my head to get home to him, to make sure that he was eating, that he was feeling okay.
My only goal, my far point was Mojo.
I talked to myself all through my shower to make sure that I brushed my teeth.
I brushed my teeth.

I was still not okay when I got out of the shower. I was not okay when I got dressed.
The entire drive. Not okay.
Knowing my far point.

Got where I was going. Shared that I was not okay. Shared enough fast enough to be as clear as possible.
Eyes bright and wide.
On.
I know that when I am like this
(you know how you get)
I know that when I am like this I have to protect myself at all costs because to not do so would be dangerous for everyone.

The day went. Carefully.
Shared my work to delight, to lesser delight.
To what seemed cursory, perfunctory, obligatory.
Unreal. Inauthentic.
I want people who love, truly.
I don’t want someone uncaring, not in any part of my life.

Other skills, gushed over. Lauded. Delighted in.
Shared.
shared out loud.

All day all day I had teetered on the edge, this rollercoaster poised and threatening at the very top.
LOUD VOICES CLOSE
CLOSELY
loud and close and disharmonious and unyielding
eyes slitted, accusing
Voices louder.

No.
I can’t be, there.
I excuse myself away, not far enough but out of sight
but not out of tension’s grasp.
The only thing I have left to help is disassociation because I cannot physically get far enough away.
So I go away.
Eyes burning into the computer screen
totally focused on the pen in my hand
and the rage behind it
summoning internal music to fill my skull loudly
drown out the screeching noises outside and in.
I share. Bits of what’s happening.
To exorcise it. Flush it out.

My face is a mask, deadened expression, eyes down. I comply when needed.

The only thing I can remember now is this:
“I know you get anxious when it’s loud and there’s a lot going on and and and but you can’t let that SHOW. They said you’re always angry.”

i cannot anymore.
I cannot.

I am not okay.

4/9/89 11:21 pm | 757a 24 february 2022

typewritten 33 years ago. found in the attic at the last possible moment.

darkness — thick, oppressive
congealing as if blood around an open breathing wound
i
am this
the wound
ed
panic steers this two-ton beast
not i racing
racing heart racing through mazed streets
dimly lit by infrequent lights
sudden dip
plunge headlong into wooded thick
et
cricket thicket surroundsound
i turn up the radio to shut out the nature
nature of this two-ton beast of steel racing heart racing.


I wrote this 33 years ago on the way home from somewhere/something stressful. My engagement party? I was less than a month away from turning 21.

I would have stopped to pull the car over to write this; wherever my first Filofax disappeared to, deep within its pockets lies a piece of looseleaf covered in my handwriting, tense and manic and completely out of control from the feel of it. This was about 6 months before I married my first ex-husband, The Sociopath. I hadn’t yet gotten anywhere close to the diagnosis I finally have, I mean I had finally gotten away from the schizophrenia misdiagnosis and was hovering somewhere in limbo, hinting around manic depression and clinical depression, but no one understood suicidality and ADHD back then, much less accounted for the PTSD I already had and would continue to have. I’m pretty sure by this point I had been put on Prozac which only helped to launch me fully into extreme mania.

The terror that I know that I was feeling that night, it is a familiar one. The time of year, well into the beginning of spring, added to the mania I know I was experiencing. Without understanding that this is how my body acts in spring, without any tools to help mitigate what would always be outside of my control, I can feel (finally, I think) really aware of just how much I have survived, and continue to survive.

I kept going when I had no proof of better times to come. I have that proof now.

I am that proof.
My proof lives in me.

It always changes; it always shifts. It gets better and it gets worse and it gets better again. Gam zeh ya’avor / gam zu l’tovah. This too shall pass and it is all for the good. גם זה יעבור זה גם לטובה