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Theia Gwen May 2015
People always tell you that it can get better
What they neglect to tell you is how much worse it gets
Before the better part comes
In every eating disorder novel,
You can always perfectly pinpoint the moment
The protagonists steps over the line of unwell
Into well
This whole 'recovery' deal sounded good enough at first
I get to eat Luna Bars,
I have positive quotes all over the place,
I meditate and do yoga all day,
I somehow reach the a level of Enlightenment
Usually reserved for Buddhist monks
And I don't have to live with a ******* eating disorder anymore
I bought a recovery journal
To talk back to my mental illness
But so far my depression has taken control of the pen
I bought a adult coloring book
To help me de-stress
But I still only want to color a river on my wrists a crimson color

I keep thinking there's a way to be a functional bulimic
Or even better, a functional anorectic
A way that I can be recovered and enlightened and normal
And still dissect each and every meal
As if I was dealing with something ***** and impure
Is it still recovery if I can't fight the voices in my head?
Is if still recovery if I don't even try?
Is it still recovery if I still can't look in the mirror,
want the outside to mirror the chaos inside,
crave sunken cheeks and fallen out hair
That I want to preform a vanishing act right before your eyes
See my skin cave in, bones protruding
I used to think that eating disorders were about beauty
But now I realize they're about pain
And perfection and punishment
And I had to live through it to see that

I seem to never be able to do anything right
And my eating disorder was supposed to remedy that
I was good at self destruction
I was good at sitting at dinner, sipping diet coke
Feeling oh, so superior and smiling brightly
As I said that I'd already eaten
And begged my stomach pains not to betray me then
But now I've failed at having an eating disorder
And at not having an eating disorder
And I can't live anymore in this shade of gray
Coloring everything and ruling my thoughts
I don't want to be in "recovery"
I want to be recovered
Because no one tells you
How you'll cry through every single meal
How you'll see yourself grow in the mirror and not know
What's real and what's not
No one tells you
That an eating disorder never goes away
That you'll never diet again
That trying to lose weight in recovery isn't a good idea

The worst thing about an eating disorder
Is that there is no such thing as abstinence
Recovery is not one decision
It is a decision you will have to make
Every time you find yourself looking down at a plate
And at first, you'll have to pray to the gods
For indulging in the sins of being a human
But someday, maybe someday
Those prayers will go somewhere else
I have no idea what this is. I just needed to ramble.
Ten green bottles.
Drugs paraphernalia
Living in squalor.
A sense of failure.

I wanna make a recovery.

Clean up my flat.
Let in the cat.
Put on a nicotine patch.

I wanna make a recovery.

Take out the bins.
Buy some vitamins.
Forgive my own sins.

An epiphany! Now I see,
my own personal Jesus must be me.

I wanna make a recovery.
Marshall my inner cavalry.
Have a ****, a shower and a shave,
and feel great!

I wanna be that man
stepping off a train,
with a sense of purpose
on a sunny day.
I want my wife to text me
'Little Johnny, Little Sally are ok,
and wish Daddy luck
making the world a place
worth growing up straight'.

I wanna make a recovery,
meditate and drink green tea.
Do solid poos, contribute
to society.
Go on a journey of self-discovery,
as they say. As the song
goes, ‘ I’ve never been to me’.
I’ll be a nauseating, life-celebrating,
rehabvangelical cliché.
Purple Angel, old and boring,
buzzing being clean ‘n’ free.
Living.
For real.
In recovery.

Ah, Mrs.Recovery has texted me
to say Little Johnny Recovery,
Little Sally Recovery,
miss their daddy. Awww, warms the cockles,
didn’t even goggle
the off-licence’s evil eye.
And if one green bottle should accidentally fall…
I wanna be in recovery.
#recovery #alcoholism #addiction #BPD #BorderlinePersonality
Remy Jun 2014
I remember all  the things that we wanted
All the memories
That haunted
My Dreams.

Now I started my recovery

I recall  our fantasies of being  famous
I know I become so dismissive and careless
And no one would've guessed
I'm the one who made you feel blessed.

Yeah I started my recovery

And after all those days
Darling, you did walk away
Ignored all the questions I asked
Now our nights are dead and gone and passed.

In my recovery
I  sacrificed who I am, myself... And me.
In my recovery
I hoped I'd become
Who I'm suppose to be
In my recovery
I lost what I need
To break free

It's a long road up to recovery  
A long way back to the light
A long road up to recovery
A long way to making it right

**Darling, sweet lover, won't you help me to recover...
Maytin Paige Jun 2014
The doctor tells me my results.
Three injuries in one.
I would need surgery.
Tears welled in my eyes.
I could no longer play the sports I loved.
Was this the end?
My ACL decided athletics had taken it's toll,
and my menisci was right along with it.
The bruised bone was a bonus though.
Was this the end?
Could I emotionally handle
the recovery?
The recovery of heartbreak from simple test results
The recovery from physical damage
The recovery of surgery that joined my main muscles back together again
The recovery of a new muscle, foreign to me
Will I ever be fully recovered?
The simple test results that can crush dreams.
kaitlyn anderson Apr 2018
recovery is hard
existing is really hard
the fact anyone does it at all
it's a miracle

but existence is resistance
it is resistance to nonexistence which
can actually be incredibly easy
backsliding into old habits is easy
old habits may die hard but
at least they can die
(hard)

recovery is hard
it is not linear
you do not follow a timeline
it is not
first you do this and then you do that
and now it's all better
kiss kiss! goodbye bad days!

recovery is "today is a good day and
i know bad days"
recovery is "today is a bad day but
i've seen so many of those that i know how to navigate it"
recovery is "you have reached your destination"
recovery is "but my destination is actually
three blocks up from here
sorry can you take me three more blocks?"
recovery is "oh no its okay i can walk from here"
recovery is "yes, i'm sure"
Nena Twedell Sep 2014
Mount Recovery
Recovery is described as a mountain
And here I am on my path to the top
Holes in my shoes bumps and bruises on my body
Blood staining the clothes I’m wearing
Not from rough terrain but from the abuse and pain I have put myself through
Callouses and scars each finding new homes on my body
Leaving held breathes on my skin
This is my recovery-
Not just from the drugs and alcohol…and from myself
On the path to the top of mount recovery
The path that seems to be traveled more and more today
Each step is a struggle as I strain to keep my balance
On what seems to be a narrow path
But filled with pain and self-discovery
A sense of wonder as I struggle to keep my balance
Amazed at myself that I haven’t fell yet.
As I look ahead I wonder if I will ever make it to the top
I continue to stumble forward
Sometimes to loosing direction
Step by step I rise in elevation
Growing callouses
Healing wounds
I stop to look up and admire the beauty of the life around
As the horizon is filled with oranges, blues, pinks and purples
As the sun sets on another day in Mount recovery.
Jackie Sep 2015
A day consists of 24 hours
1,440 minutes
86,400 seconds
That average person takes about 20,000 breaths a day
Every second of every day is based around my recovery
Mind games
Distractions
How many times I can look in the mirror and tell myself no
At least 4
Maybe 5
3 on a good day
A person blinks almost 28,800 times in 24 hours
But sometimes I just stare
So I can focus on something other than my recovery
My addiction
My need for something other than what I can't have
I can hear my thought process
Sometimes it's quiet
Like when I'm asleep
Other times it's the only thing I hear
So I call her because she knows how to turn down the volume
She is my recovery
Because even for a split second everything is perfect when I see her
The amount of breaths I take double
The number of times I blink goes down rapidly
My need for recovery increases exponentially
She is the calm that flows over my body
The rush of oxygen to my brain
When she talks to me my number of bad days plummet
Because she loves me and I love her
So by hurting me I hurt her
My recovery is an ongoing process
That consists of 24 hours
1,440 minutes
86,400 seconds
Of me trying not to hurt myself
1 day turns into 1 victory
And when I tell her that over the phone I can sense that she is smiling
So 1 day really turns into 2 victories
Carter Ginter Oct 2012
Recovery is a long and painful process.
Its a lengthy, twisting, one way road.
It is not fair, life never is.
You need to accept that that is just the way it goes.
Broken hearts, they will never shatter even.
We were so close until the day she said she was leaving.
It was so easy for her to let us go.
She left me here alone and why I still don't know.
She thought I would be broken, as soon as she was gone.
Now it's time for me to prove that she had thought wrong.
Yes I cared about her; she had said she cared about me.
Those were empty words, burdened with all the lies that I now see.
It was far too perfect that I should have known it could never be true.
It hurts even after so much time; my recovery is beyond overdue.
I was blindsided; she always knew exactly the right words to say.
She made my heart race and I had never considered the chance that she would just walk away.
I wish I had known what she had planned to do.
Because she only proved why trusting people is not what I should do.
Now there are no more lies and I’m no longer waiting.
No more time of mine is she taking.
I am so done; I wasted so much of my time.
All on a girl who couldn’t even consider mine.
My heart still stands, as if it was never broken.
It is as strong as her lies, so easily spoken.
But the time I had with her I will never regret.
She taught me a few lessons that I will not soon forget.
The first thing I learned is to not trust someone with your heart,
Because in the end, it will likely end up ripped apart.
Then there’s lesson two, and this comes from a different part;
Do not be with someone if you already know you’re going to break their heart.
I’m done lying to myself and not completely accepting me.
It only took a broken heart and then the recovery.
Desert Rose Sep 2017
Recovery is not
Simple
It's not being better
It's bumps in the road

Recovery is relapse
Going back to old habits
Because it's easier than
Coping

Recovery is hiding the
Pain because everyone else
Believes it's gone

For me
Recovery just
Isnt a reality
I'll likely die before
"It gets better"
berry Jul 2013
recovery is not pretty.
it is not painless or simple or instant.
it is a road littered with backsliding and obstacles and doubt.
a path marred with reopened scars and sleepless nights and feigned smiles.

recovery is rubberbands and ice cubes and pacing and cigarettes.
it is phone calls at 3am when you can barely breathe and all the walls are closing in.
it is screaming at the ones you love because they love you too much to let you break your skin.

it is long sleeves and overly-cautious internet browsing and lots of movies.
it is eating way too much ice cream and taking walks in the middle of the night.
it is hard. recovery is hard. it is messy. it is painful and chaotic. but it is not impossible.
FIRST DAY

1.
Who wanted me
to go to Chicago
on January 6th?
I did!

The night before,
20 below zero
Fahrenheit
with the wind chill;
as the blizzard of 99
lay in mountains
of blackening snow.

I packed two coats,
two suits,
three sweaters,
multiple sets of long johns
and heavy white socks
for a two-day stay.

I left from Newark.
**** the denseness,
it confounds!

The 2nd City to whom?
2nd ain’t bad.
It’s pretty good.
If you consider
Peking and Prague,
Tokyo and Togo,
Manchester and Moscow,
Port Au Prince and Paris,
Athens and Amsterdam,
Buenos Aries and Johannesburg;
that’s pretty good.

What’s going on here today?
It’s friggin frozen.
To the bone!

But Chi Town is still cool.
Buddy Guy’s is open.
Bartenders mixing drinks,
cabbies jamming on their breaks,
honey dew waitresses serving sugar,
buildings swerving,
fire tongued preachers are preaching
and the farmers are measuring the moon.

The lake,
unlike Ontario
is in the midst of freezing.
Bones of ice
threaten to gel
into a solid mass
over the expanse
of the Michigan Lake.
If this keeps up,
you can walk
clear to Toronto
on a silver carpet.

Along the shore
the ice is permanent.
It’s the first big frost
of winter
after a long
Indian Summer.

Thank God
I caught a cab.
Outside I hear
The Hawk
nippin hard.
It’ll get your ear,
finger or toe.
Bite you on the nose too
if you ain’t careful.

Thank God,
I’m not walking
the Wabash tonight;
but if you do cover up,
wear layers.

Chicago,
could this be
Sandburg’s City?

I’m overwhelmed
and this is my tenth time here.

It’s almost better,
sometimes it is better,
a lot of times it is better
and denser then New York.

Ask any Bull’s fan.
I’m a Knickerbocker.
Yes Nueva York,
a city that has placed last
in the standings
for many years.
Except the last two.
Yanks are # 1!

But Chicago
is a dynasty,
as big as
Sammy Sosa’s heart,
rich and wide
as Michael Jordan’s grin.

Middle of a country,
center of a continent,
smack dab in the mean
of a hemisphere,
vortex to a world,
Chicago!

Kansas City,
Nashville,
St. Louis,
Detroit,
Cleveland,
Pittsburgh,
Denver,
New Orleans,
Dallas,
Cairo,
Singapore,
Auckland,
Baghdad,
Mexico City
and Montreal
salute her.



2.
Cities,
A collection of vanities?
Engineered complex utilitarianism?
The need for community a social necessity?
Ego one with the mass?
Civilization’s latest *******?
Chicago is more then that.

Jefferson’s yeoman farmer
is long gone
but this capitol
of the Great Plains
is still democratic.

The citizen’s of this city
would vote daily,
if they could.

Chicago,
Sandburg’s Chicago,
Could it be?

The namesake river
segments the city,
canals of commerce,
all perpendicular,
is rife throughout,
still guiding barges
to the Mississippi
and St. Laurence.

Now also
tourist attractions
for a cafe society.

Chicago is really jazzy,
swanky clubs,
big steaks,
juices and drinks.

You get the best
coffee from Seattle
and the finest teas
from China.

Great restaurants
serve liquid jazz
al la carte.

Jazz Jazz Jazz
All they serve is Jazz
Rock me steady
Keep the beat
Keep it flowin
Feel the heat!

Jazz Jazz Jazz
All they is, is Jazz
Fast cars will take ya
To the show
Round bout midnight
Where’d the time go?

Flows into the Mississippi,
the mother of America’s rivers,
an empires aorta.

Great Lakes wonder of water.
Niagara Falls
still her heart gushes forth.

Buffalo connected to this holy heart.
Finger Lakes and Adirondacks
are part of this watershed,
all the way down to the
Delaware and Chesapeake.

Sandburg’s Chicago?
Oh my my,
the wonder of him.
Who captured the imagination
of the wonders of rivers.

Down stream other holy cities
from the Mississippi delta
all mapped by him.

Its mouth our Dixie Trumpet
guarded by righteous Cajun brethren.

Midwest?
Midwest from where?
It’s north of Caracas and Los Angeles,
east of Fairbanks,
west of Dublin
and south of not much.

Him,
who spoke of honest men
and loving women.
Working men and mothers
bearing citizens to build a nation.
The New World’s
precocious adolescent
caught in a stream
of endless and exciting change,
much pain and sacrifice,
dedication and loss,
pride and tribulations.

From him we know
all the people’s faces.
All their stories are told.
Never defeating the
idea of Chicago.

Sandburg had the courage to say
what was in the heart of the people, who:

Defeated the Indians,
Mapped the terrain,
Aided slavers,
Fought a terrible civil war,
Hoisted the barges,
Grew the food,
Whacked the wheat,
Sang the songs,
Fought many wars of conquest,
Cleared the land,
Erected the bridges,
Trapped the game,
Netted the fish,
Mined the coal,
Forged the steel,
Laid the tracks,
Fired the tenders,
Cut the stone,
Mixed the mortar,
Plumbed the line,
And laid the bricks
Of this nation of cities!

Pardon the Marlboro Man shtick.
It’s a poor expostulation of
crass commercial symbolism.

Like I said, I’m a
Devil Fan from Jersey
and Madison Avenue
has done its work on me.

It’s a strange alchemy
that changes
a proud Nation of Blackhawks
into a merchandising bonanza
of hometown hockey shirts,
making the native seem alien,
and the interloper at home chillin out,
warming his feet atop a block of ice,
guzzling Old Style
with clicker in hand.

Give him his beer
and other diversions.
If he bowls with his buddy’s
on Tuesday night
I hope he bowls
a perfect game.

He’s earned it.
He works hard.
Hard work and faith
built this city.

And it’s not just the faith
that fills the cities
thousand churches,
temples and
mosques on the Sabbath.

3.
There is faith in everything in Chicago!

An alcoholic broker named Bill
lives the Twelve Steps
to banish fear and loathing
for one more day.
Bill believes in sobriety.

A tug captain named Moe
waits for the spring thaw
so he can get the barges up to Duluth.
Moe believes in the seasons.

A farmer named Tom
hopes he has reaped the last
of many bitter harvests.
Tom believes in a new start.

A homeless man named Earl
wills himself a cot and a hot
at the local shelter.
Earl believes in deliverance.

A Pullman porter
named George
works overtime
to get his first born
through medical school.
George believes in opportunity.

A folk singer named Woody
sings about his
countrymen inheritance
and implores them to take it.
Woody believes in people.

A Wobbly named Joe
organizes fellow steelworkers
to fight for a workers paradise
here on earth.
Joe believes in ideals.

A bookkeeper named Edith
is certain she’ll see the Cubs
win the World Series
in her lifetime.
Edith believes in miracles.

An electrician named ****
saves money
to bring his family over from Gdansk.
**** believes in America.

A banker named Leah
knows Ditka will return
and lead the Bears
to another Super Bowl.
Leah believes in nostalgia.

A cantor named Samuel
prays for another 20 years
so he can properly train
his Temple’s replacement.

Samuel believes in tradition.
A high school girl named Sally
refuses to get an abortion.
She knows she carries
something special within her.
Sally believes in life.

A city worker named Mazie
ceaselessly prays
for her incarcerated son
doing 10 years at Cook.
Mazie believes in redemption.

A jazzer named Bix
helps to invent a new art form
out of the mist.
Bix believes in creativity.

An architect named Frank
restores the Rookery.
Frank believes in space.

A soldier named Ike
fights wars for democracy.
Ike believes in peace.

A Rabbi named Jesse
sermonizes on Moses.
Jesse believes in liberation.

Somewhere in Chicago
a kid still believes in Shoeless Joe.
The kid believes in
the integrity of the game.

An Imam named Louis
is busy building a nation
within a nation.
Louis believes in
self-determination.

A teacher named Heidi
gives all she has to her students.
She has great expectations for them all.
Heidi believes in the future.

4.
Does Chicago have a future?

This city,
full of cowboys
and wildcatters
is predicated
on a future!

Bang, bang
Shoot em up
Stake the claim
It’s your terrain
Drill the hole
Strike it rich
Top it off
You’re the boss
Take a chance
Watch it wane
Try again
Heavenly gains

Chicago
city of futures
is a Holy Mecca
to all day traders.

Their skin is gray,
hair disheveled,
loud ties and
funny coats,
thumb through
slips of paper
held by nail
chewed hands.
Selling promises
with no derivative value
for out of the money calls
and in the money puts.
Strike is not a labor action
in this city of unionists,
but a speculators mark,
a capitalist wish,
a hedgers bet,
a public debt
and a farmers
fair return.

Indexes for everything.
Quantitative models
that could burst a kazoo.

You know the measure
of everything in Chicago.
But is it truly objective?
Have mathematics banished
subjective intentions,
routing it in fair practice
of market efficiencies,
a kind of scientific absolution?

I heard that there
is a dispute brewing
over the amount of snowfall
that fell on the 1st.

The mayor’s office,
using the official city ruler
measured 22”
of snow on the ground.

The National Weather Service
says it cannot detect more
then 17” of snow.

The mayor thinks
he’ll catch less heat
for the trains that don’t run
the buses that don’t arrive
and the schools that stand empty
with the addition of 5”.

The analysts say
it’s all about capturing liquidity.

Liquidity,
can you place a great lake
into an eyedropper?

Its 20 below
and all liquid things
are solid masses
or a gooey viscosity at best.

Water is frozen everywhere.
But Chi town is still liquid,
flowing faster
then the digital blips
flashing on the walls
of the CBOT.

Dreams
are never frozen in Chicago.
The exchanges trade
without missing a beat.

Trading wet dreams,
the crystallized vapor
of an IPO
pledging a billion points
of Internet access
or raiding the public treasuries
of a central bank’s
huge stores of gold
with currency swaps.

Using the tools
of butterfly spreads
and candlesticks
to achieve the goal.

Short the Russell
or buy the Dow,
go long the
CAC and DAX.
Are you trading in euro’s?
You better be
or soon will.
I know
you’re Chicago,
you’ll trade anything.
WEBS,
Spiders,
and Leaps
are traded here,
along with sweet crude,
North Sea Brent,
plywood and T-Bill futures;
and most importantly
the commodities,
the loam
that formed this city
of broad shoulders.

What about our wheat?
Still whacking and
breadbasket to the world.

Oil,
an important fossil fuel
denominated in
good ole greenbacks.

Porkbellies,
not just hogwash
on the Wabash,
but bacon, eggs
and flapjacks
are on the menu
of every diner in Jersey
as the “All American.”

Cotton,
our contribution
to the Golden Triangle,
once the global currency
used to enrich a
gentlemen class
of cultured
southern slavers,
now Tommy Hilfiger’s
preferred fabric.

I think he sends it
to Bangkok where
child slaves
spin it into
gold lame'.

Sorghum,
I think its hardy.

Soybeans,
the new age substitute
for hamburger
goes great with tofu lasagna.

Corn,
ADM creates ethanol,
they want us to drive cleaner cars.

Cattle,
once driven into this city’s
bloodhouses for slaughter,
now ground into
a billion Big Macs
every year.

When does a seed
become a commodity?
When does a commodity
become a future?
When does a future expire?

You can find the answers
to these questions in Chicago
and find a fortune in a hole in the floor.

Look down into the pits.
Hear the screams of anguish
and profitable delights.

Frenzied men
swarming like a mass
of epileptic ants
atop the worlds largest sugar cube
auger the worlds free markets.

The scene is
more chaotic then
100 Haymarket Square Riots
multiplied by 100
1968 Democratic Conventions.

Amidst inverted anthills,
they scurry forth and to
in distinguished
black and red coats.

Fighting each other
as counterparties
to a life and death transaction.

This is an efficient market
that crosses the globe.

Oil from the Sultan of Brunei,
Yen from the land of Hitachi,
Long Bonds from the Fed,
nickel from Quebec,
platinum and palladium
from Siberia,
FTSE’s from London
and crewel cane from Havana
circle these pits.

Tijuana,
Shanghai
and Istanbul's
best traders
are only half as good
as the average trader in Chicago.

Chicago,
this hog butcher to the world,
specializes in packaging and distribution.

Men in blood soaked smocks,
still count the heads
entering the gates of the city.

Their handiwork
is sent out on barges
and rail lines as frozen packages
of futures
waiting for delivery
to an anonymous counterparty
half a world away.

This nation’s hub
has grown into the
premier purveyor
to the world;
along all the rivers,
highways,
railways
and estuaries
it’s tentacles reach.

5.
Sandburg’s Chicago,
is a city of the world’s people.

Many striver rows compose
its many neighborhoods.

Nordic stoicism,
Eastern European orthodoxy
and Afro-American
calypso vibrations
are three of many cords
strumming the strings
of Chicago.

Sandburg’s Chicago,
if you wrote forever
you would only scratch its surface.

People wait for trains
to enter the city from O’Hare.
Frozen tears
lock their eyes
onto distant skyscrapers,
solid chunks
of snot blocks their nose
and green icicles of slime
crust mustaches.
They fight to breathe.

Sandburg’s Chicago
is The Land of Lincoln,
Savior of the Union,
protector of the Republic.
Sent armies
of sons and daughters,
barges, boxcars,
gunboats, foodstuffs,
cannon and shot
to raze the south
and stamp out succession.

Old Abe’s biography
are still unknown volumes to me.
I must see and read the great words.
You can never learn enough;
but I’ve been to Washington
and seen the man’s memorial.
The Free World’s 8th wonder,
guarded by General Grant,
who still keeps an eye on Richmond
and a hand on his sword.

Through this American winter
Abe ponders.
The vista he surveys is dire and tragic.

Our sitting President
impeached
for lying about a *******.

Party partisans
in the senate are sworn and seated.
Our Chief Justice,
adorned with golden bars
will adjudicate the proceedings.
It is the perfect counterpoint
to an ageless Abe thinking
with malice toward none
and charity towards all,
will heal the wounds
of the nation.

Abe our granite angel,
Chicago goes on,
The Union is strong!


SECOND DAY

1.
Out my window
the sun has risen.

According to
the local forecast
its minus 9
going up to
6 today.

The lake,
a golden pillow of clouds
is frozen in time.

I marvel
at the ancients ones
resourcefulness
and how
they mastered
these extreme elements.

Past, present and future
has no meaning
in the Citadel
of the Prairie today.

I set my watch
to Central Standard Time.

Stepping into
the hotel lobby
the concierge
with oil smooth hair,
perfect tie
and English lilt
impeccably asks,
“Do you know where you are going Sir?
Can I give you a map?”

He hands me one of Chicago.
I see he recently had his nails done.
He paints a green line
along Whacker Drive and says,
“turn on Jackson, LaSalle, Wabash or Madison
and you’ll get to where you want to go.”
A walk of 14 or 15 blocks from Streeterville-
(I start at The Chicago White House.
They call it that because Hillary Rodham
stays here when she’s in town.
Its’ also alleged that Stedman
eats his breakfast here
but Opra
has never been seen
on the premises.
I wonder how I gained entry
into this place of elite’s?)
-down into the center of The Loop.

Stepping out of the hotel,
The Doorman
sporting the epaulets of a colonel
on his corporate winter coat
and furry Cossack hat
swaddling his round black face
accosts me.

The skin of his face
is flaking from
the subzero windburn.

He asks me
with a gapped toothy grin,
“Can I get you a cab?”
“No I think I’ll walk,” I answer.
“Good woolen hat,
thick gloves you should be alright.”
He winks and lets me pass.

I step outside.
The Windy City
flings stabbing cold spears
flying on wings of 30-mph gusts.
My outside hardens.
I can feel the freeze
deepen
into my internalness.
I can’t be sure
but inside
my heart still feels warm.
For how long
I cannot say.

I commence
my walk
among the spires
of this great city,
the vertical leaps
that anchor the great lake,
holding its place
against the historic
frigid assault.

The buildings’ sway,
modulating to the blows
of natures wicked blasts.

It’s a hard imposition
on a city and its people.

The gloves,
skullcap,
long underwear,
sweater,
jacket
and overcoat
not enough
to keep the cold
from penetrating
the person.

Like discerning
the layers of this city,
even many layers,
still not enough
to understand
the depth of meaning
of the heart
of this heartland city.

Sandburg knew the city well.
Set amidst groves of suburbs
that extend outward in every direction.
Concentric circles
surround the city.
After the burbs come farms,
Great Plains, and mountains.
Appalachians and Rockies
are but mere molehills
in the city’s back yard.
It’s terra firma
stops only at the sea.
Pt. Barrow to the Horn,
many capes extended.

On the periphery
its appendages,
its extremities,
its outward extremes.
All connected by the idea,
blown by the incessant wind
of this great nation.
The Windy City’s message
is sent to the world’s four corners.
It is a message of power.
English the worlds
common language
is spoken here,
along with Ebonics,
Espanol,
Mandarin,
Czech,
Russian,
Korean,
Arabic,
Hindi­,
German,
French,
electronics,
steel,
cars,
cartoons,
rap,
sports­,
movies,
capital,
wheat
and more.

Always more.
Much much more
in Chicago.

2.
Sandburg
spoke all the dialects.

He heard them all,
he understood
with great precision
to the finest tolerances
of a lathe workers micrometer.

Sandburg understood
what it meant to laugh
and be happy.

He understood
the working mans day,
the learned treatises
of university chairs,
the endless tomes
of the city’s
great libraries,
the lost languages
of the ancient ones,
the secret codes
of abstract art,
the impact of architecture,
the street dialects and idioms
of everymans expression of life.

All fighting for life,
trying to build a life,
a new life
in this modern world.

Walking across
the Michigan Avenue Bridge
I see the Wrigley Building
is neatly carved,
catty cornered on the plaza.

I wonder if Old Man Wrigley
watched his barges
loaded with spearmint
and double-mint
move out onto the lake
from one of those Gothic windows
perched high above the street.

Would he open a window
and shout to the men below
to quit slaking and work harder
or would he
between the snapping sound
he made with his mouth
full of his chewing gum
offer them tickets
to a ballgame at Wrigley Field
that afternoon?

Would the men below
be able to understand
the man communing
from such a great height?

I listen to a man
and woman conversing.
They are one step behind me
as we meander along Wacker Drive.

"You are in Chicago now.”
The man states with profundity.
“If I let you go
you will soon find your level
in this city.
Do you know what I mean?”

No I don’t.
I think to myself.
What level are you I wonder?
Are you perched atop
the transmission spire
of the Hancock Tower?

I wouldn’t think so
or your ears would melt
from the windburn.

I’m thinking.
Is she a kept woman?
She is majestically clothed
in fur hat and coat.
In animal pelts
not trapped like her,
but slaughtered
from farms
I’m sure.

What level
is he speaking of?

Many levels
are evident in this city;
many layers of cobbled stone,
Pennsylvania iron,
Hoosier Granite
and vertical drops.

I wonder
if I detect
condensation
in his voice?

What is
his intention?
Is it a warning
of a broken affair?
A pending pink slip?
Advise to an addict
refusing to adhere
to a recovery regimen?

What is his level anyway?
Is he so high and mighty,
Higher and mightier
then this great city
which we are all a part of,
which we all helped to build,
which we all need
in order to keep this nation
the thriving democratic
empire it is?

This seditious talk!

3.
The Loop’s El
still courses through
the main thoroughfares of the city.

People are transported
above the din of the street,
looking down
on the common pedestrians
like me.

Super CEO’s
populating the upper floors
of Romanesque,
Greek Revivalist,
New Bauhaus,
Art Deco
and Post Nouveau
Neo-Modern
Avant-Garde towers
are too far up
to see me
shivering on the street.

The cars, busses,
trains and trucks
are all covered
with the film
of rock salt.

Salt covers
my bootless feet
and smudges
my cloths as well.

The salt,
the primal element
of the earth
covers everything
in Chicago.

It is the true level
of this city.

The layer
beneath
all layers,
on which
everything
rests,
is built,
grows,
thrives
then dies.
To be
returned again
to the lower
layers
where it can
take root
again
and grow
out onto
the great plains.

Splashing
the nation,
anointing
its people
with its
blessing.

A blessing,
Chicago?

All rivers
come here.

All things
found its way here
through the canals
and back bays
of the world’s
greatest lakes.

All roads,
rails and
air routes
begin and
end here.

Mrs. O’Leary’s cow
got a *** rap.
It did not start the fire,
we did.

We lit the torch
that flamed
the city to cinders.
From a pile of ash
Chicago rose again.

Forever Chicago!
Forever the lamp
that burns bright
on a Great Lake’s
western shore!

Chicago
the beacon
sends the
message to the world
with its windy blasts,
on chugging barges,
clapping trains,
flying tandems,
T1 circuits
and roaring jets.

Sandburg knew
a Chicago
I will never know.

He knew
the rhythm of life
the people walked to.
The tools they used,
the dreams they dreamed
the songs they sang,
the things they built,
the things they loved,
the pains that hurt,
the motives that grew,
the actions that destroyed
the prayers they prayed,
the food they ate
their moments of death.

Sandburg knew
the layers of the city
to the depths
and windy heights
I cannot fathom.

The Blues
came to this city,
on the wing
of a chirping bird,
on the taps
of a rickety train,
on the blast
of an angry sax
rushing on the wind,
on the Westend blitz
of Pop's brash coronet,
on the tink of
a twinkling piano
on a paddle-wheel boat
and on the strings
of a lonely man’s guitar.

Walk into the clubs,
tenements,
row houses,
speakeasies
and you’ll hear the Blues
whispered like
a quiet prayer.

Tidewater Blues
from Virginia,
Delta Blues
from the lower
Mississippi,
Boogie Woogie
from Appalachia,
Texas Blues
from some Lone Star,
Big Band Blues
from Kansas City,
Blues from
Beal Street,
Jelly Roll’s Blues
from the Latin Quarter.

Hell even Chicago
got its own brand
of Blues.

Its all here.
It ended up here
and was sent away
on the winds of westerly blows
to the ear of an eager world
on strong jet streams
of simple melodies
and hard truths.

A broad
shouldered woman,
a single mother stands
on the street
with three crying babes.
Their cloths
are covered
in salt.
She pleads
for a break,
praying
for a new start.
Poor and
under-clothed
against the torrent
of frigid weather
she begs for help.
Her blond hair
and ****** features
suggests her
Scandinavian heritage.
I wonder if
she is related to Sandburg
as I walk past
her on the street.
Her feet
are bleeding
through her
canvass sneakers.
Her babes mouths
are zipped shut
with frozen drivel
and mucous.

The Blues live
on in Chicago.

The Blues
will forever live in her.
As I turn the corner
to walk the Miracle Mile
I see her engulfed
in a funnel cloud of salt,
snow and bits
of white paper,
swirling around her
and her children
in an angry
unforgiving
maelstrom.

The family
begins to
dissolve
like a snail
sprinkled with salt;
and a mother
and her children
just disappear
into the pavement
at the corner
of Dearborn,
in Chicago.

Music:

Robert Johnson
Sweet Home Chicago


jbm
Chicago
1/7/99
Added today to commemorate the birthday of Carl Sandburg
Iz Apr 2019
I feel lost
I struggle at finding my way
between recovery and relapse
I don’t know what path to take
because recovery is a dream
but so is being thin
I feel lost
I struggle at understanding my hunger
I struggle at eating without feeling a thunder
inside me thumping the walls of my head
I struggle at being carefree
I struggle at enjoying my time
with my family and friends when I am home
when I should feel free

I feel lost
I have been trying to recover
but everything seems so hard
and I am tired
I am tired of trying
I am tired of hating my own self
for not being recovered enough
for not being thin enough
and I feel lost
I feel lost in the darkness of this illness
that I wish was stronger than my own self
because at least
I wouldn’t be stuck
between recovery and relapse
Julia Robertson Jan 2014
your first step on the road to "recovery"
was to tape words on your reflection
colors littered with senseless lessons
colors littered with senseless rules

your second step on the road to "recovery"
was to trail words on the thin walls
tainting the white trim of your door
the words were like water seeping from
your demon flooded bedroom

your third step on the road to "recovery"
was to illustrate the words in unsustainable images
literally photoshopped to the unachievable
recovery became self indulgence

you have a skewed sense of progress
thinking consuming the clean will clear you of your sins
but your sins are buried deep in the abandonment you kept hidden
in the hallows of your debt

self recovery cannot be found with words spat out of context
hanging on your reflection
self recovery is found when you reflect those words into context
Cass Jan 2014
I think back to when everything was simple, when he was alive and we were all whole but then he broke us and we never fit back together.
Life used to be carefree tentative smiles and excitement over coffee shops and we all had so much potential and drugs were the plastic bottles in our bathrooms, taken with caution.
I think of how many friends i used to have, and how everything has been superficial since we all put ourselves in plastic boxes on unreachable shelves
These days I have no motivation and I want to see the sun. Happiness is as fleeting as the snow on the ground before the wind sweeps it up high above he trees.
I used to be the snow, and I didn't care where I landed. That's why I wasn't very surprised when he took advantage of my innocence and unstable hold on reality. But that doesn't mean that sometimes I don't still shudder when people come near me, or wonder if I look broken to them.
I see him in school and I remember his eyes, innocent, as they ask for forgiveness, and I didn't have the heart to tell him that he had taken the last thing that meant anything to me, or that he was the last straw when I made that fateful decision last year, or that I STILL wake up gasping from having nightmares starring him, or that he causes me to stay up late into the night feeling completely alone. That he stole my already feeble ability to say "no." But I'm wiser now, so I forgave him even though his arms felt like needle ****** when he hugged me.
Recovery is long, and some might say I'm not recovered at all. It's been a year but I still think about death every day. I'm in love, but I hate myself every second I'm not with him. But none of that matters, because now I know that I will always choose pain over oblivion.
I've found a delicate balance that can be destroyed by one gust of wind, but I'm trying to be better, and that's more than I've ever been able to say.
I don't want to say that a song saved my life but the song is his voice when he tells me he loves me, and the screams in my head when I don't want to continue, because at least I know I'm alive.
Sometimes I miss the people who have left me and the girl I used to be, but it's over now, and it's best not to dwell on things that I can never change. Because recovery isn't the number of days passed, but allowing time to heal you.
It's allowing yourself to feel better, because only you can give yourself that permission. It's learning to love yourself, and to accept everything in stride. But most of all, recovery is forgiveness.
Forgiving others for what they've done to you, but more importantly yourself, in any condition, the way the shore forgives the tide which leaves but always comes back for more, because the ocean loves the sand more than we can comprehend, and that's how we should all love ourselves: unconditionally and during all weather.
In between   (a poem)
.
my mind struggles against its own illusion
nightmare tumbles out into still morning
light is heavy,
a fog of echoes...
and I am caught
.
day dreams the sunlight
dreams light the day
and I am caught in between
mourning echoes...
like a stillborn ghost
who can't take a breath in the present

….
  
I live on a tropical island and just want to go surfing with my husband, but the nausea in the early morning as I try to eat  breakfast and drive with him to the beach is so uncomfortable.  Day after day it makes even surfing a chore, and I consider not going anymore.  Background anxiety and unreasonable irritation interferes with our marriage, frustrates him enough to want me out.  

For me, a trip to the grocery store or meeting a group of people awakens the same dreadful fear as rockclimbing a cliff. Perspective has been lost in the extremes.  I try to gain some control over this hindering nuisance, seeking situations that bring the same surges of adrenaline so I can learn to master it.  If I can just push past the avoidance that would keep me inside doing nothing, if I can just ignore the feeling I want to throw up, if I can just get out there, I am rewarded with life’s potential beauty eventually.  Many days I do enjoy the thrill of mountain biking or connection with nature when surfing, but there are too many days of internal struggle that reduce what should be enjoyable to a relentless chore of wrestling inner demons.

The VA offers a few sessions of marriage counseling, and the doctor begins to explain PTSD.  ***, I’ve learned to cope with an unreliable brain, but now there’s this?  From what I understand (and that’s just me, an amateur philosopher) Sometimes the brain is so traumatized, that the memory is literally sealed off, encapsulated, protecting it from changing.  If later something happens that is similar, the brain triggers avoidance responses as a take-no-chances survival mechanism.  Literally the brain is protecting one’s self from one’s self.  This all-or-nothing strategy works fending off potential dinosaur attacks, but in our complex society, these automatic avoidance behaviors complicate functioning and well being.  Life becomes an attitude of constant reaction instead of motivated intention.

The website for the National center for PTSD says.  “After a trauma or life-threatening event, it is common to have reactions such as upsetting memories of the event, increased jumpiness, or trouble sleeping. If these reactions do not go away or if they get worse, you may have Posttraumatic Stress Disorder.”  

“Common reactions to trauma are:
• Fear or anxiety: In moments of danger, our bodies prepare to fight our enemy, flee the situation, or freeze in the hope that the danger will move past us. But those feelings of alertness may stay even after the danger has passed. You may:feel tense or afraid, be agitated and jumpy, feel on alert.  
• Sadness or depression: Sadness after a trauma may come from a sense of loss---of a loved one, of trust in the world, faith, or a previous way of life. You may:have crying spells, lose interest in things you used to enjoy, want to be alone all the time, feel tired, empty, and numb.  
• Guilt and shame: You may feel guilty that you did not do more to prevent the trauma. You may feel ashamed because during the trauma you acted in ways that you would not otherwise have done. You may:feel responsible for what happened, feel guilty because others were injured or killed and you survived.  
• Anger and irritability: Anger may result from feeling you have been unfairly treated. Anger can make you feel irritated and cause you to be easily set off. You may:lash out at your partner or spouse, have less patience with your children, overreact to small misunderstandings.  
• Behavior changes: You may act in unhealthy ways. You may:drink, use drugs, or smoke too much, drive aggressively, neglect your health, avoid certain people or situations.”   It lists four main symptoms: reliving the event, avoiding situations that remind of the event, feeling numb, and feeling keyed up (also called hyperarousal)”

Four words strung together: Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome.  They’ve become a tired cliché, exhausted from the endless threat of random cruelty camouflaged in banality, weary of the weight shouldering back the wall that separates death and gore from the living.  Living was a reflex beyond willpower and devoid of choice. Control was self-deception.  The mind was so preoccupied with A: survival, B: sanity, in that order.  Rest was a cruel illusion.  The tank was drained, no room for emotions ditched.  Empathy took too much effort, fear was greedy.  Hopefully they can be remembered and found on the other side, if there is one.  Sleep deprived cells were left hyper-alert from the imminent, shot up and addicted to adrenaline.  Living was Fate and Chance, and meant leaving that time and place sealed in forgetfulness.  

Now PTSD is a worn out acronym, a cold shadow of what it feels like.  I try to think of something more personal that can describe the way it randomly visits me, now resigned to its familiar unwelcome influence.  It steals through my brain, flying ahead of me with its own agenda of protecting sabotage.  Its like the Guardian Trickster of Native American legend.  Its an archetype but real enough to make mistakes: Chulyen, the black raven.

A decade after the ER, contentment is found in a garden of slow tranquility as a butterfly interrupts a sunbeam.  My heart fills with bittersweet as I’ve finally found something I love and want to keep.  Just then Chulyen’s grasping black claws clamp my heart with painful arrhythmia and it fills to burst, tripping in panic trying to recover its pace.  The sudden pain drops me to my knees, in the dirt between fragrant lavender and cherry tomatoes.  Pain stops breath and time and makes me remember the ER, when my heart rebelled its ordained purpose for a week.  I had tried to throw my bitter life back in God’s face but He didn’t take it.  Now that I have peace and a life that I treasure, He’s taking it now.  The price for my mistake is due.  It was all just borrowed time and I’m still so young, my children just babies.  God with a flick of cruelty reminds me not to put faith in the tangible, especially when its treasured.  The sharp claws finally relent and I can breathe, looking up with a gasp and the Raven takes flight overhead leaving a shadow.  Bright noon warmth, unusually heavy and foreboding, seems to say ‘there will come a time when you will not welcome the sun.’   Doctors run an EKG and diagnose ‘stress’.

The bird perches on my shoulder two more decades later, always seeing death just over there.  So I sit on the porch just a little longer and check my list again, delaying the unavoidable racing heart and rush of tension when I fix the motorcycle helmet strap under my chin.  I know all those stupid drivers have my life in their cell-phone distracted hands and hope my husband knows how much I love him, and my daughters too.  

Chulyen wakes me at 3:00 am when autumn’s wind aggravates the trees.  His rustle of black feathers outside unsettles summer’s calm night.  He brings an end-of-the-world portent that hints this peace is just temporary, borrowed.  Tribulation will return.

Ravens are attracted to bright shiny things.  Chulyen steals off with treasures like intention, and contentment.  I don’t realize they are missing until occasionally I find myself truly living in the moment.  I guess that is another reason why I crave adventure, for those instants and epiphanies that snap me out of that long term modis operandi of reacting, instead of being.  The daily list of ‘I must, or I should’ can for a brief while become ‘I want’  and I am free.

My companion the black bird perches relaxed in the desert on the gatepost of a memory.  A bullet-scarred paint-faded sign dangles by one corner from rusty barbed wire:
    No Trespassing    
    That Means You
I have a haunted idea what's behind the fence.  Chulyen implies the memory with a simple mistaken sound:
a Harley in the distance is for a second the agitating echo of a helicopter...
or those were the very same words they said when...
or I hear a few jangling clinks of forks in our warm kitchen...
hinting a cold cafeteria at 5:00 am smelling of fake eggs and industrial maple flavored corn syrup,
and everything else that happened that day...
My cells recollect, brace with the addictive rush of adrenaline.  But the raven denies access to the memory, distracting with discomfort.  I trip and I fall hard into the gritty dirt of irritation at the person who unknowingly reminded me.  Anxiety floods in along with fatigue of the helplessness of it all, back then and still now.  I can't go further.  Chulyen’s tricking deception says Leave This Memory, you never wanted to come back.
But I already knew from just recognizing the bird patiently sitting there a sentinal,
recalling every other time he tricked me with nausea and depression.
I tried to tell myself again that behind that gate,
the past has dried up from neglect.
Disintegrated into dust,
Blown away,
doesn't
exist.



After everything else, how to work through this?  The VA gave me a manual, a crudely printed set of worksheets with a government-looking blue cover page:  Cognitive Processing Therapy.
“In normal recovery from PTSD symptioms, intrusion, thoughts, and emotions decrease over time and no longer trigger each other.  However, in those who don’t recover, the vivid images, negative thoughts, and strong emotions lead to escape and avoidance.  Avoidance prevents the processing of the trauma that is needed for recovery and works only temporarily.  The ultimate goal is acceptance.  
There may be “stuck points”, conflicting beliefs or strong negative beliefs that create additional unpleasant emotions and unhealthy behavior.  For example, a prior belief may have been “ I am able to protect myself in dangerous situations.”  But after being harmed during military service, a conflicting belief surfaces, “I was harmed during service, and I am to blame.”  If one is ‘stuck’ here, it may take some time until one is able to get feelings out about the trauma, because one is processing a number of rationales.  “I deserved it because…” , or “I misinterpreted what happened, I acted inappropriately, I must be crazy…”  The goal is to change the prior belief to one that does not hinder acceptance.  For example, “I may not be able to protect myself in all situations.”

(chapter continues with recovery methods)
Woke up this morning with a feeling of dread
as twisted thoughts swirled through my head
maybe a thought or memory, can be triggered by
something we fear, a place maybe a person.
A large crowd, it felt as though I was rooted to
the ground, a sudden awareness of my heart racing
around like hands from a clock.



Over powered by a tight throat its feels like
I might have a lump in my throat I can't get
enough air into my lungs I feel sick feeling
faint just wish it would end there nothing to live
for my life is finished. Stopped "living."



Things can get better you're see the doctors
and nurses will come to your aid theirs help
out there come what may it gets worse before
its gets better. Sit on the word recovery
powerful say it out loud again I will recover
I promise you. things will look brighter
and the sun will shine with a new tomorrow
Love Dec 2013
Its an amazing thing,
Recovery is.
It's inspiring,
And strengthening,
But at the same time,
It tears you apart and you go through withdrawals.
But recovery is great,
Because it gets you away from the thing that's been hurting you.
Although,
The hardest,
And most terrible thing about recovery,
Is when you're not sure if you want to recover.
I've had this going around in my head for a while. I thought it was about time I wrote it down.
Vilene Joubert Jan 2013
No one looks at me the way she does
Her eyes stares into my soul
The glares makes me feel the unknown
Forbidden love that feels so real

Its like both just know
We can be so bad for each other if together
Yet we both just strive to bring out the best in the other

Sharing the same weaknesses
Going through the same difficulties
We are our own addiction
Motivation to stay clean is the love for each other

We are just two **** junkies trying to stay clean
Our love for our drug should pull us apart
Yet it makes us cling to each other in the hope recovery will last

I don't know how sane this is
But it works for us currently
Everything in this moment is exactly how its suppose to be..
Stephen E Yocum Aug 2013
The waves rush in and out again,
Legs useless, hands limp, arms bent,
The masked ones have departed,
the cutting now has quit.

Silent, though I wish to scream,
Brain it is pounding,
in a preamble to explode.
White light and incessant buzzing,
relentless pain is throbbing,
conveying its full extent.

Hands and kind face suddenly appear,
Holding blessed instrument,
Approaching now quite near,

Into my drip it does commence,
I descend into the depths,
white to grey to black again.
Down I go in welcome spin,
into the embrace of oblivion,
Ah, Morpheus my dear,
dear sweet friend.

Wake me not until I'm dead,
Or 'til the tide does ebb again.
Hospital stay 2011, Brain Surgery.
The Greek God of Sleep; Morpheus"
And namesake of a common pain
reducing addictive drug, much
abused by certain seekers of
emotional relief.
Theia Gwen Apr 2014
I put the blade down
Once again
The gleam of silver shining
Obstructing my view
Imagining metallic
Deep in my skin
I pick it up,
Put it down,
Pick it up again
Recovery
Or
Relapse
I choose the latter
REVERSE
I choose the latter
Relapse
Or
Recovery
Pick it up again
Put it down
I pick it up
Deep in my skin
Imagining metallic
Obstructing my view
The gleam of silver shining
Once again
I put the blade down
It's amazing how just reading a poem backwards can change its meaning entirely. :)
torrey Jan 2015
The length of your recovery
Is determined by the extent of your injuries
So how do you determine a broken heart?
How would you start?

How do you determine painful wonders?
Is it counted in numbers?
How do you determine someone's injuries,
if they're all just miseries?
It may just be one of those mysteries

How do you cure
A hundred years of heartache
Do you lie for their sake?
Tell them everything is just make or break?

How do you determine someone's emotional trauma?
Deep down inside they're just ready to hide
In their heart they already feel like they've died

So what kind of recovery would you suggest?
If you knew all their troubles, what would you assess?
For someone so lost, for someone so stressed
*What kind of recovery would they possess?
Adrianna Aarons Dec 2014
I think back to when everything was simple,
when he was alive and we were all whole
but then he broke us and we never fit back together.
Life used to be carefree
tentative smiles and excitement over coffee shops
and we all had so much potential
and drugs were the plastic bottles in our bathrooms,
taken with caution.
I think of how many friends I used to have,
and how everything has been superficial
since we all put ourselves in plastic boxes on unreachable shelves.
These days I have no motivation and I want to see the sun.
Happiness is as fleeting as the snow on the ground
before the wind sweeps it up high above the trees.
I used to be the snow, and I didn't care where I landed.
That's why I wasn't very surprised
when he took advantage of my innocence and unstable hold on reality.
But that doesn't mean that sometimes I don't still shudder
when people come near me,
or wonder if I look broken to them.
I remember his eyes,
innocent,
as they ask for forgiveness,
and I didn't have the heart to tell him
that he had taken the last thing that meant anything to me,
or that he was the last straw when I made that fateful decision last year,
or that I STILL wake up gasping from having nightmares starring him,
or that he causes me to stay up late into the night feeling completely alone.
That he stole my already feeble ability to say
"no."
But I'm wiser now,
so I forgave him even though his arms felt like needle ****** when he hugged me.
Recovery is long,
and some might say I'm not recovered at all.
It's been a year but I still think about death every day.
I'm in love, but I hate myself every second I'm not with him.
But none of that matters,
because now I know that I will always choose pain over oblivion.
I've found a delicate balance that can be destroyed by one gust of wind,
but I'm trying to be better,
and that's more than I've ever been able to say.
I don't want to say that a song saved my life
but the song is his voice when he tells me he loves me,
and the screams in my head when I don't want to continue,
because at least I know I'm alive.
Sometimes I miss the people who have left me and the girl I used to be,
but it's over now,
and it's best not to dwell on things that I can never change.
Because recovery isn't the number of days passed,
but allowing time to heal you.
It's allowing yourself to feel better,
because only you can give yourself that permission.
It's learning to love yourself,
and to accept everything in stride.
But most of all,
recovery is forgiveness.
Forgiving others for what they've done to you,
but more importantly yourself,
in any condition,
the way the shore forgives the tide
which leaves
but always comes back for more,
because the ocean loves the sand more than we can comprehend,
and that's how we should all love ourselves:
unconditionally and during all weather.
Sia Jane Jan 2014
Diagnosis: Anorexia Nervosa
Status: Recovered.

So my point in writing... am I doing this for myself? Maybe... or to inspire others? Maybe...
Or to simply just show and say, that I am through this. Through what? Through all that growth that you encounter when you truly engage yourself in recovery.
This does not mean I will not grow further, learn more. Develop and engage. It doesn’t mean I have been able to shut the door once and for all on my mental health struggles (I was trying to be as politically correct towards myself using that term).
It means, I trust, I believe, and not naively, that I have done the hard work.
I have stepped outside of the mirror.
I no longer believe I can only live half way, a half life, between sickness and wellness.
It means, I know, I will never, get sick again.
Many may laugh, or shake their heads at that. And yet, what I am writing here is filled with so much faith and trust, that I can be sure of myself. Even if no one else in the world believes it, I do. And I know it, because I have made a choice.
There were some backwards and forwards, to relapses and re-growths, but each and every fall, I chose to learn. I chose to take to therapy. I chose.
I choose life.  And so that means, the commitment to life, to myself, that I will always take the route that leads to more life, or to more hope...


And so getting well. What happened there? Well, after years of self abuse, of anger turned inwards, after trying to destroy myself in every single way possible... I wondered, inquisitively, what would happen if I used all I had learnt in hospital, all the positive energy directed at me, the words my therapist would say to me... I wondered, what if?
That if, turned out to be the most amazing curiosity. It is why I am safe, well, “recovered.” I don’t use the term recovered lightly. I recognise that my whole life will mean being mindful, it will mean self awareness, it will mean vulnerability. But what I am certain of, is that each year that passes, I grow and gain strength in ways I never realised I could.
I use “recovered” because I don’t believe I am “in recovery.” I have done the recovery. I have done the putting food in my mouth, consulting a nutritionist, the ridiculous amount of weight gain that allowed me to be healthy. I am done with the depression, the endless anxiety, the self harm.
I say “recovered” because as Marya Hornbacher writes: “I mean flat-out eat-normally stay-healthy get-comfortable-with-your-body-and-actually-like-it recovery.”
Few believe it exists. In fact, I was told my numerous doctors I would never recover. I would always be chronic. Sick. In need of hospital.
It exists. I know that. Because it exists for me.
Recovering has meant finding a voice, and using it. It means putting food in my mouth, it means seeing friends, engaging in life, seeking out healthy ways of coping when I feel overwhelmed, scared, anxious...


I live.

© Sia Jane
I wrote this 4 years ago, for EDAW (Eating Disorder Awareness Week) It is heavily edited, in that I have chopped two pieces which felt the most important from the rest of the story. Other than that it remains untouched. I hope this can help carry us into February and continue to raise awareness.
Canaan Massie Nov 2012
I see through that deathly daze of yours.
I see the opportunity,
The regret, the heartache, the gratefulness.

You told me that you weren't sure,
If you are happy you get another chance,
Or sorrow-filled because it isn't over.

Those words broke my heart.
So I left this whitewashed room,
Of demonic devices,
And went to my car.

I wasn't sure what I was doing,
So I sparked this cigarette,
Put it to my lips,
And let everything go.

I looked crazy, I could tell.
Punching my steering wheel,
Crying like you were in a meeting,
With the coroner.

I opened my glove box,
Saw my antidote,
And swallowed.

I dried my sorrows,
Picked up my hope,
Locked my insanity in my car,
And slapped this smile back upon my face.

I couldn't let you see me like this.
I couldn't let you see how upset I am,
Not with you, but with your decision.
You have enough on your mind.

I return back to Hope's deathbed,
Give her a smile to assure her I am fine,
And crawl into the bed next to her.

Back to reality, I sink.
Only to be stolen from sobriety.
It's easier this way.
I feel nothing.
I'm numb.

Numb as usual.
But this time, body matches soul.
And not another tear shall be shed,
For the worst is over...

And for us all,
Recovery commences.
Just Alex Mar 2019
I don’t think this is an addiction.
No, honestly, it’s just the cat.
No, really, I just fell,
No, I’m positive, I hit a table and-

I don’t think this is an addiction.
If it were an addiction,
I would have to be out of control,
And I’m not doing it five times a day,
now am I?
Though admittedly I think about it,
Five hundred times a day this-
This is not an addiction.

This is not an addiction, I assure you,
when I’m well aware that’s what this is,
When I smile and say that “I’m fine,”
I hope you come to realize that most times,
It’s a lie, and-

“No, really, I ran into the coffee table,”
I grumble to my therapist.
I’ve gotten so good at hiding this that,
“No, I’m serious” and a forced look of honesty
Somehow gets me by.

“This is not an addiction,” I cry,
When I know, deep inside,
That, again, that is was this is.

This.. This is an addiction.
Cuts not healing for three weeks,
Thinking about it for hours at a time,
Wanting the euphoria of bleeding,
On the bathroom floor,
This.. This is an addiction.

This is an addiction, I scream,
Finally taking it for what it is as my friends,
My lover,
My mother,
All yell at me to put my blade down,
To lay down,
To breathe.

They scream at me
To end this seemingly endless cycle
That I’ve been going through
For a little over five years.

The nurse practitioner I saw the other day,
Told me,
“I want you to have a list
Of thirteen things
You can do before you resort
To cutting.”

And I want that to happen.

But this..
This is an addiction.
And it’s going to take a long time to recover.

So far,
I’ve managed to stop the police calls,
The hospital visits,
Some of the more larger issues.
The ones that leave me
worse off than where I started
To an extreme.

I’m still recovering.
I think I’m always going to be recovering,
I don’t think it’s ever gonna leave the back of my mind..
But this.. This is not an addiction.
This is recovery.
serch elen Mar 2013
Have you ever didn't remember Win 7 administration password? If so, then it's very annoying and irritating. This is often a avoidable problem a lot of the customers find. However, don't worry you will find plenty of solutions with this particular. A lot of the customers, who didn't remember their password either, choose formatting their hard disk or operating their system, but it's not needed in lots of of cases to do something.

Well, you might find the password hint in your mind. Whenever you produced it you had been motivated to record an argument for example "Password=my birthday!" Whenever you now enter the wrong password at logon time then your phrase "Password= my birthday" can look immediately underneath the password prompt. Unless of course you're as old like me, this can help remind you the correct password is "your birthday".

You might attempt to totally reset password from command prompt:
Command Prompt: The command internet user *** abc w ill set the password for user *** to abc. You are able to only put it on a free account apart from your personal for those who have admin rights.
Also, you might attempt to stick to the below steps to totally reset windows 7 password:
Step One. Turn on laptop and set the windows Compact disc within the Compact disc ROM.
Step Two. Your screen will highlight the content for startup the Compact disc. Now, press any crucial for start startup.
Step Three. When the process will end up, your screen can have the setup all of which indicate the strategy is being looked over and files are loaded.
Step Four. After you are can comprehend the message about welcoming within the fix screen then press ENTER key to begin.
Step Five. Now press F8 for accepting the license contracts.
Step Six. Now your screen create provides you with several choices, choose repair option.
Step 7. When the repair will begin, it will require a very long time because disk has been underneath the technique of checking, set up files are replicated.
Step 8. Restarting is essential in case your technique of copying files is finished. It'll start itself as well as have the ability to the progress bar on screen. It should take nearly only a couple of seconds.
Step 9. Please be aware that don't make mistake of pressing any type in between restarting process as well the Compact disc again. When restarting will most likely be achieved, screen will instantly show the conventional billboard screen and you'll watch that setting up home windows will be outlined.
Step 10. Press Change F9 after you will notice the unit progress bar for that extreme left side from the screen. ALAS! This is actually the security hole. Now, command console will probably be opened up for you and could provides you with the chance to achieve much of your entire body.
Step 11. Type NUSRMGR.CPL inside the prompt then you'll wish to press ENTER. Immediately, after entering you're getting access of user accounts in the control sections.
Step 12. Now, simply choose the account you will need to modify the password or get rid of the password whoever you hire to consider is way better for you. If you want to take away the password then enter control userpassword2 and select the chance for logging into sites without password. Now, close the home windows and exit out of your command box and keep using your projects of repairing.
Step 13. Whenever your repair is finished, you'll be able to login pc together with your new password or without password, pick one you've preferred.

After reading through the above mentioned lengthy instructions regarding how to admin password, would you understand? Or are you able to do Windows 7 reset password with no problem? If no, It is best to make reference to professional windows Password Recovery Tool!
Source from:http://www.passwordunlocker.com/knowledge/reset-windows-7-password.html
Michelle M Diaz May 2014
Recovery is such a weird word.
To different people it means the same thing,
but for different things.
To me, recovery is for depression and anxiety
To another could be for drugs
To yet another alcohol
and all of them are negatives that we try to make better
and I've definitely recovered from where I was before
but, I'm not fully recovered.
I'm still getting my **** together
I'm still having bad I want to **** myself days
I'm still fighting the urge to cut
I'm still unable to cope
but I'm still trying
I guess trying, is tiring, but worth it, right?
I don't like change, and darkness was so comforting
I felt terrible for so long, but it was all I could remember
Now, I'm recovering
recovering who I was
although sometimes it feels like I'm losing who I am
whatever, thats not the point
my point is messing up is okay
relapsing is okay
and one day, I will be okay
*** trafficking – the trafficking and debasement of souls; Drug trafficking – the trafficking of substances that debase the body.  Here compared you will find the prevalence, impact, and rehabilitation processes associated with *** and shrug trafficking.  Respective clientele, demographics, and locales that these types of trafficking touch will be revealed in order enlighten you to their world-wide prevalence. The physical, emotional, spiritual, and psychological impact of lifestyles that result from these two types of trafficking will be detailed to etch vividly an image of just how far-reaching the impact of these two activities is. Light will be shed upon the rehab processes that lead to recovery from each.
                 According to UnoDC.org, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the use of illicit drugs has remained in a stable trend, with approximately the same number of people using illicit drugs each year. This trend has continued for a number of years. Upon examining the world drug report, written by UnoDC.org, production of several drugs exhibit particularly interesting trends. ***** production for example fell and spiked in a somewhat predictable patter from 1990 until 2010. When this data is graphed a reasonable medium appears for all the years, revealing that ***** production has stayed around an average production of roughly 200,000 hectares annually. Likewise, coca cultivation pictures an interesting trend. From 1990 to 2010 coca production appeared to be almost identical each year, and with little to no rise or fall in production, there is a similar trend in its being trafficked.  
Nefarious: Merchant of Souls is a documentary that was released in 2012 by Exodus Cry Its producers and researchers saw firsthand the atrocities of the *** trafficking industry. The film crew interviewed former pimps and prostitutes, spoke to traffickers, the families of the trafficked and to individuals still actively engaged in three sides of the *** trade referring to currently employed pimps and prostitutes as well as those who purchased ***. The researchers and producers interviewed eastern European gang members and took a trip to Amsterdam’s red-light district – home of legal prostitution. They journeyed to Los Angeles and saw the glamorized side of the dark issue of *** trade.
According to Nefarious, the number of humans trafficked for the purpose of providing ****** services is on a shockingly steep rise. In a matter of a few years, *** trafficking rose from the third largest criminal enterprise to the second. It is second only to drug trafficking and is vying for the position as top criminal enterprise in the world. It is encroaching upon that position far more speedily than any authority or decent human being would care to acknowledge.  A survey taken in 2010 by DART (the drug awareness resistance training program) revealed that 21.8 million people aged 12 and older had taken an illicit drug in the previous month. In 2010 it was estimated that between 153 and 300 million people had used an illicit drug at least once in the previous year. These statistics fail to take into account the impact that this usage has on the lives of the families of drug users. Neither do these statistics reveal the extent to which drug users lifestyles are impacted by drugs. However, nearly  every single human trafficked for ****** purposes is completely and utterly enveloped in the lifestyle of prostitution and the violent world of being prostituted. In Nefarious a shocking statistic is revealed. Approximately ten percent of the entire human population of earth has been trafficked. Both human and drug trafficking are prevalent across the globe. Human trafficking occurs in 161 of 192 countries. Illicit drugs are trafficked in every country that has laws that deem substances unlawful. There are little to no race, religion, ethnicity, or age restrictions on who can and is trafficked for use of ***, but drugs are far more limited by age and ethnicity in their use.
Drug trafficking, though similar to *** trafficking in many ways, is in no way as substantial a damaging force to the mind, soul, and spirit as the world of *** trafficking  is in terms of the critical and dangerous force it exhibits in the emotional, physical, psychological, and spiritual  impact it has on young girls. Both drugs and *** trafficking have some influence in all of these respective areas. The primary area in which people are affected by drug use is the physical. Drug users’ health declines, they become physically or psychologically dependent, and they may develop diseases from sharing of needles or lack of inhibitions that lead to *** with an infected individual. Drugs may, in some rare cases, lead to psychoses and mental disorders. They may cause brain damage, which is both physically and mentally damaging. Drugs may even set one’s heart and soul in a place that they are more susceptible to lies or truth. They alter spiritual state for some individuals, but only mildly. However, *** trafficking victims are impacted majorly and in their entirety as a person. In all aspects of the physical, mental, and spiritual, *** trafficking victims are consumed by *** trafficking. In Nefarious it is revealed that In order to “break” *** trafficking victims they are profusely beaten, and are psychologically toyed with to create a twisted trust and dependence on their various handlers. They are repeatedly *****, and are examined like cattle by those who wish to buy women. They are imprisoned in dark rooms and not allowed to leave unless told to do so. They are bedridden and forced to ******* themselves. After being broken in ways described above and sold to a ****, girls are forced every day to meet certain quotas of customers and cash flow. If they do not meet these they are beaten even more. They lay in bed sometimes a week at a time to recover physically enough to usefully return to their “job”.  Through this hellish ordeal, their soul, self-worth and identity are being attacked by circumstances that devalue them. They become like animals.
*** trafficking victims become dependent on their environment for normalcy. This is so true for some individuals that even though they have been rescued from the lifestyle, they return.  This is not because the *** trafficking victims enjoys the lifestyle of prostitution, and it is not because they want to. Instead, it is because they think they can be nothing more than a *******. The *** trafficking victim, in this case, believes that they need to settle into the numb and thoughtless mind state that they develop when broken. Returning to prostitution does not evidence an addiction. In contrast, it is the cry of a soul that is desperately trying to cope. They do this in order to feel as if they can survive.  
The rehab processes for *** and drug trafficking differ greatly in commitment and length, but are similar in that they both require physical and psychological rehabilitation.  Drug rehabilitation programs typically consist of twelve-step programs or something similar. They last a number of months, or occasionally a few years. They allow individuals counsel and encouragement, and they attempt to, by abstinence, exorcise an addicted individual’s addiction. *** trafficking rehabilitation requires the re-creation of an individual. Self-worth must be reconstructed. The spirit must be healed in order to allow for psychological healing. Prostitutes are not addicted to prostitution, but prostitution produces dependence in that the prostituted crave normalcy. This dependence must be killed. Successfully rehabilitating women from this forced lifestyle requires lifelong commitment and endless resources. It requires passionate fanatics, people who will pour their life into changing the lives of others, because only the incurable fanatic can wreak havoc on the tragedy of human trafficking. Any short-term effort to rehabilitate a *** trafficking victim is doomed to failure. The degree to which the brokenness of *** trafficking victims becomes ingrained in them is so extreme that it takes a lifetime to reshape their lives.
While researching *** trafficking in order to accurately produce Nefarious, the researchers and producers of Nefarious became convicted by facts that they collected. The evidence they collected speaks to the fact that *** trafficking does not just attack the body; it attacks the entire being, and in far worse ways than drugs ever could. Varied races and ages are prostituted and / or consume drugs. The impact of both of *** and drug trafficking is severe, but much more so severe in the case of human trafficking. The rehab process for human trafficking is much more in depth and is testament to the horror and degree of psychological, mental, and emotional disfigurement, as well as acclimation to a horrible situation to the point that horror becomes normal – a new definition of addiction. Human trafficking is an atrocity that is far more horrendous and prevalent than imaginable. It is far more destructive than drug trafficking. Drug trafficking is one of the most destructive forces in this generation.  Surely consuming drugs is one of the most horrid things we can do to our bodies, but what about consuming souls? *** trafficking consumes souls, hearts, minds and bodies. It splits, fragments, debases, brutalizes, obliterates, murders, rapes, molests, destroys, and dehumanizes the prostituted.  Drug trafficking attacks the body the soul, and sometimes the mind, but in much milder ways.
I still have withdrawals.
I still refer to myself as fat.
I still occasionally skip meals.
I still crave all those pills.
I still have the urge to cry.
I still hate myself from time to time.
But you see, I'm still in recovery.
I've gained thirty pounds since I started.
I've not had any pills outside my prescriptions.
I've been able to call myself pretty.
I've not cried since the day I started this recovery.
I've at least been able to love myself most days.
So you see, I'm not just this pathetic little thing I used to be.
anastasiad Nov 2016
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Sjr1000 Feb 2014
I've been digging
through this dumpster
far too long
trying to get to the bottom of it all.
Slimey sweet stench
there's my first love
my first pipe
my last light
my first rush
my last gush
my first bet
my last buck
"the game ain't over
until the rent money's gone."

I am down a deep hole
and my only tool is a shovel
I've got that one choice
but to go
down
down
down.
Drunk and dial
Drunk and poetry
how did I get here
how do I get out?

I'm a spiritual wasteland
connected to no one
connected to nothing
My drug
My man
My woman
My casino
The rush comes first
The numbness comes last
until
death, insanity or jail
is within my grasp.
I do what I do
But I am allergic too
you understand
when I do what I do
I break out in handcuffs
jail cells
strapped down to beds
looking around
longing for my dumpster
and
what I might have found.

1st Step
12th Step
I've done them all
though the 13th Step
I liked the best
Sponsors have come and gone
Spiritual awakenings
have all been done
I am back in this dumpster
where I had begun.

There is an exquisite mystery
at the heart of it all
the internal shift
happens
an inside job
The 21 year old's first black out
enough is enough
The 60 year old
on his fifth DUI
going out for one more round.

It is true
I have seen it many times
Recovery can be found
Hope restored
Wisdom in these halls
Peace within these walls
The dumpster closed
and left behind
A ladder falls and arrives
acceptance and gratitude
combine
as they say
"One day at a time."
"Poker the game ain't over until the rent money is gone" was on a greeting card.
13th Stepping is hitting on new comers in meetings.   I am not in recovery yet, but I always need to add the yet.
mars Oct 2018
I don't

2. Think I will

3. Ever stop

4. Counting

5. But I can

6. Learn to live

7. Around the numbers
Jordan Rowan Jan 2016
The light beyond the windowpane reads like the lines of a poem
And the headlights crash into streams on their way home
The lampshade brushes your arm and crushes you like a stone
You're still there but over here you're all alone

The streets are all black or maybe it's just the night
The day was long but now it's time to make it right
But when your memories are wrong and blurred out of sight,
Do you really have the strength to put up a fight?

You light your cigarette and close one, ****** eye
"Don't bat a lash" says the woman who last made you cry
And she follows you down to the depths of your mind
She complicates your soul and then she just hurries by

Somewhere down the alley, towards the church bells of dawn
You hear a voice that slowly carries on
Like a lost whippoorwill still whispering its song
A feeling comes over you and you wonder why you waited so long
Hayleigh Dec 2014
So what is recovery?
Is it that tingle in your cheeks
When the corners of your mouth meet
Upwards.
Is it that sparkle in your eyes
Because they're no longer suffocated by your cries and you now have the potential to realise
You are strong.
Is it that glimpse of light, that for so long had been out of sight, that you cling onto tight, through fear
It's only temporary.
Is it rediscovering yourself, rebuilding your health and developing a new wealth
Of coping mechanisms.
Is it realigning the chemical imbalances in your brain, so you no longer feel insane, so there's not less pain
But a mind that can handle it.
Is it the glimpse in the mirror where you don't turn in horror but you greet and honour the person that you are.
Is it the fear, that's consumed you year by year, that's brought the end so near,
That starts to evaporate.
Is it eating a meal, and not having to feel like
You need to punish yourself.
Is it hearing voices, but no longer allowing them to dictate your choices,
Because they don't own you anymore.
Is it putting down the bottle, because you're fed up of the throttle
It had you in.
Is it the feeling when you finally win
Back your own heart and mind
When finally you look inside
And don't find
Darkness but light,
When the night no longer scares you
And the days you can finally pull through
Or is it simply a phase
A gaze at what could never be
For there is no clarity,
No prospect to be free
In chains and nooses
And scars and bars.
In bodies that fight to survive
Trapped inside a mind that fights to take our lives.

Some of us; shall never be undone
We fight a war;
That could Never be won.
First draft....
I think recovery is all of these things whilst accepting there is always the risk that it is temporary if you allow it to be.

— The End —