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Ashley Feb 2015
Why go back
when you can move forward?
I face this question
each day I breathe.
It's not always so easy
to answer.
P
T
S
D
Post
Traumatic
Stress
Disorder
Keeps me looking back
to my past
behind my shoulder.
P
T
S
D
Post
Traumatic
Stress
Disorder
Usually associated
with our war heroes.
The ones who can't leave
the battlefield behind.
I am not one of them.
I am just
an anxious
a depressed
in pain
person.
But I can't help
that I have it.
P
T
S
D
Post
Traumatic
Stress
Disorder
My battlefield
was the school,
the classrooms,
the playground.
The babysitter,
the dark closets,
the dark rooms,
the basement.
P
T
S
D
Post
Traumatic
Stress
Disorder
The anxiety
the migraines
the depression
the fibro
no sleep.
All lead back
to square one.
The abuse
by my peers
by my teachers
by my babysitter.
P
T
S
D
Post
Traumatic
Stress
Disorder
Four easy letters
Four simple words
Lifetime in pain
from those simple things
from those not so simple things.
P
T
S
D
Post
Traumatic
Stress
Disorder.
I was recently diagnosed with PTSD. I wanted to get this out.
Patrick Austin Sep 2018
Our Backgrounds before we met...

I'm an only child born in Montana in 1983, from a divided home. Parents divorced at seven, Mom was unstable and unfaithful. Dad obtained custody of me and we moved to Oregon Coast to live with my Grandma. I had unhealthy visits and relationship with Mom thereafter. My Grandma died at 12 and at 13 my Dad remarried an alcoholic woman, I had a strained relationship with them until adulthood when she stopped drinking. I had exposure to trauma; alcoholism, mental illness, verbal abuse and juvenile troubles. I rebelled by using drugs in my late teens and early twenties, I lived on my own for a few years after high school but had little direction.

My bride is the eldest with two little brothers, parents stayed in same area of Portland during childhood with lots of family support and her parents stayed married. They had Christian values but some anger and anxiety issues at home. She was sexually assaulted at 17 and never had good closure with this. She told me her parents didn't provide her enough help with things like this growing up. Status quo was the backbone of the family dynamic, challenging emotions were discouraged. She rebelled by being reckless with herself, financially and sexually. She decided to join the Navy at 19. She lived alone briefly, but mostly with Grandparents & Parents before our marriage.

I loved how we both grew up reading Archie comics. No other girl I had ever met had that in common with me. I think we wanted a surreal life like the one in Riverdale.

2002

She and I were 19 when we first met in my home town on the coast at an arcade. We became friends and secretly liked each other. I was too nervous to ever make a move on her. We traveled together, she stayed with me, we used drugs together and drank at times. One night she drank too much and had *** with a guy I knew at a party. I was devastated by this. She was Navy bound and I didn't see a real future for us. The next morning she left and I didn't talk to her again for two years. I figured she would be gone with the Navy soon and that she must not have been interested in a relationship with me despite the time we spent together.

2003

I was depressed about this rejection. I dated an older woman who was interested in me but was no substitute. I eventually moved to the Portland area to work and live. I still had few plans and was lonely, in or out of the few brief relationships I attempted. I never found someone that I felt safe with or had a true connection, let alone true love. She ended up not following through with the Navy and continued working her way up in her job at the call center. She attended community college and dated a few guys. She dated one guy for a couple of years who was not a good match for her but stayed with him off and on despite issues. His family was wealthy and treated her well. He slept around on her as did she. At one point he gave her an STD. She also had an ongoing affair with a married man in the military that she went to high school with. He had a child and a wife with mental health issues. She was still hurting a lot at times and not always doing well.

2004

She reached out to me via email after two years of no contact. We emailed back and forth a couple times over the next few months. We talked about meeting up. We spoke on the phone and eventually met up in Portland. We had an amazing night getting to know each other again and work past the confusion of our earlier days of friendship. I realized that she did in fact like me before but since I was timid and trying to be proper and take things slowly she didn't understand my motives. She apologized for her actions at the party as well. She claimed she was in a really messed up place and was making bad choices at that time. Getting our feelings out in the open was good and she appreciated my attitude towards being slow to make moves on her when we first met. I was worried about falling for her based on our history but eventually I was determined to give it a shot. We soon after starting dating and being intimate. Our love was extremely powerful and beyond all others we had both experienced. She broke ties with other suitors and shortly after we talked about marriage and started planning a wedding for the next year.

I remember when we first held hands. We were so shakey and she was quivering on my couch as I had my arm around her. We felt so safe with each other. We could finally be ourselves and do what our hearts desired. We knew we were on to something new and so amazing. We were so patient with each other as we navigated our new love and emotional thresholds.

I remember when we saw Matisyahu in concert together. That was a once in a lifetime experience and a life-changing moment for us. I feel it set the tone for things to come in our future.

I remember how creative my proposal to her was, in the Arcade where we first met. I hid the ring in a prize container from one of those claw machines. Pretending I got the ring from inside by reaching into the machine on one knee I was so nervous and wasn't sure if I could pull it off before she caught on. She looked so shocked and surprised. I was so excited she said yes! We took pictures in the photo machine and had burgers afterwards, I'd do all of it all over again just to see her face in that moment.

2005

We found an apartment for us in Portland. I moved in while she was still living back with her parents until the wedding. She had to change her number because the married man she was previously involved with kept calling her about changing her mind about marriage and continuing their relationship. She was offered a job in Denver and we decided to move away together after our sandy wedding in Cannon Beach. I still had a very hard time and was embarrassed with my past history with her. Many of my friends knew what had happened at 19 and how much it hurt me but I was so crazy about her I think I tried to pretend it didn't happen or that it was not a big deal because we were younger. We got married and moved to Colorado soon after. We made friends at a church, I became more active as a Christian and really loved being married. We were very involved in keeping spirituality in our marriage. I began to notice her poor financial decisions and practices more. This caused conflict but we always tried to communicate and work on things.

I remember when we went down to my folks for New Year's in 2005. We sipped tea in my Datsun as we drove to the coast over the snowy mountain pass. We told them of our engagement. We were all so blissful and excited. We never knew what was to come. We didn't even know about the opportunity in Denver yet. Our story is amazing!

I remember when I wanted to go see her in Portland and the roads were iced over. I left my car at a park and ride before I caused a wreck. I took the light rail across town then rode a bus to the Eastside shopping mall. The bus to her house was not running because it wasn't safe so I walked the rest of the 4 Miles sometimes having to crawl on my hands and knees to make it up hills in the ice and then I finally made it only to just spend a couple hours with her and fall asleep on her parents couch. Her Dad drove us back the next morning to my car so I could get to work. It was all worth it just to see her for that little extra time. I would have done anything for her.

I remember when she was interviewing for the new position in Denver? I drove all over Portland trying to find little toy cars to help with her illustration about how a team is like a car having all four wheels and how they work together to accomplish a goal. I was so proud of her for giving it her all and succeeding at earning that position. Now that I think of it, that car analogy applies to our family and us. We all need each other to be better and keep on track and be a team. I am so motivated by that and our boys. I lose my way without that and I want to be her reflection and motivation as she has been that for me. I truly thought we brought out the best in each other when we were together.

I remember when we were given tickets to see Fiona Apple. That was so spontaneous and a great way to kick off our time in Denver together. We always used to watch our same movies over and over again. Like the Friends DVDs and White Christmas every winter break and The Wedding Singer. We walked everywhere and lived simply. "I wanna be the guy, who grows old with you"

I remember in our first Denver apartment when we took baths together in our claw foot tub in the big bathroom. We put a board over the top and played cards. I liked playing Uno with her in bed too. She was so funny being slightly color blind and in the dark, mixing up the greens and blues. We played Uno in Breckenridge too at that cool bed and breakfast in the fall.

2006

We had continued fun and adventure in our new home of Denver. She was doing well as a trainer for the bank and I started working in health foods. We went camping in New Mexico a couple times with friends and we both took individual trips to Oregon as well as one together for her uncle's wedding. We had marital spats on occasion but always bounced back. The issues we had seemed like part of a normal marriage and were far better than what I had grown up around. I realized that marriage was a lot of work but I was up for the task. She occasionally became aggressive throwing things at me or breaking things during conflict.  I believed I was the problem and tried to change for her in many ways. With two incomes we still had trouble making our bills at times. She had debts that I never knew about that started to catch up with us but I took care of getting them settled and we paid off her car and traded it for an older Volvo Wagon that we both loved, I even had it repainted her favorite color for a birthday gift. Overall things seemed like they were progressing in a positive way.

I remember when we saw Midnight in concert in Boulder. That was the peak of our hippy days. We were alive with pleasure in our healthy vegetarian diets and practices living in a time and place like no other. I want to be like that again. Reggae was our music. We had much in common.

2007

We really fell into our roles in our marriage and the community; church and culture, friends etc. Things seemed very balanced and appropriate for us at that time and that age (24-25). We had separate bank accounts and jobs. I had money in savings. We started the process of buying a house so we could invest in something. She became pregnant shortly after. I embraced the challenge with positive energy but we were both in for a big change. We started having more fights. I didn't have many friends and would write to old friends via social media just so I could to catch up and tell them things were going great with being married to make myself feel better than I actually did. She hated the dawn of social media and also felt isolated I'm sure. She felt I should be doing more for her and I didn't know how to do what she needed but I failed to ask a lot of the time. After one argument, she left the house. My instinct told me to look at ******* and ******* as a retaliation. I had not done this much once we were married because she always met my needs but when things were difficult between us I felt more emotionally isolated. She walked in and realized what I had been doing. She was very upset, and because she was pregnant, thought I was not attracted to her. The truth is I found her even more beautiful and in fact when I looked at ******* I tried to look at women I found less attractive than her so that I feel good about what I have. I mostly fantasized about how these women were more submissive and loving than her. That is the part I needed to feel good about and feel better about myself with because I felt very dominated and controlled. She has never forgiven me for this and I will never stop feeling sorry to her for my brokenness. During one particular argument that year she was getting close to being violent towards me again and I pushed her away on the chest with my fingertips. She got very mad and said I hurt her. I immediately felt terrible and apologized. I never let something like that happen again. I have always avoided violence towards others especially women and of course her. I was defenseless against physical and emotional abuse.

2008

Our eldest son was born at the beginning of the year, it was a traumatic birth for everyone. We wanted a natural birth with a midwife but we were transferred to a hospital and she ended up having an emergency C-section, nothing went as planned. We had a really hard time coping with the emotions of this experience. A lot of buried feelings and trauma from both of us started coming out. We moved a month later into our new home outside of town. No more walking or biking to places, we had to drive everywhere. This house was next to our friends from church. We thought this would make us feel less isolated but we didn’t really have the community with them that we had hoped for. They were upset that they didn't have a child of their own yet and being around us might have been hard for them. My wife stopped working and stayed home with our son. All these changes made for a very difficult time. I did my best to support them but this was the first time we shared a bank account and needed to follow a budget more than ever before. We had no debt at the beginning of the year with money in savings but then the hospital bills put us down about $7,000 and rising with new home and moving expenses and baby needs. My job could barely keep up. She and I had a hard time adjusting. We could not afford to travel home to Oregon and visit family as much and we felt more and more isolated. She started showing me more signs of instability, locking herself in the bathroom with kitchen knives and scraping her legs which continued off and on for years to come. Talks of divorce and suicide threats seemed to happen more than before. I felt responsible and tried to fix her ever changing issues with me.

I remember when herr ******* were full and swollen with milk. It is so beautiful the way she could feed our babies. I wanted her in every way, our bodies belonged to each other. I was there for her and our shared pleasure. I loved it when she told me that she was mine in the heat of passion. This spark could only be a bandage for so long but I didn't know that yet.

2009

I tried to promote within my company but was not selected, they were cutting budgets and employment all around me. I felt worried about our future. I had always thought the military might be a good opportunity and could move us closer to family back home. My father-in-law encouraged me to look into the Coast Guard. I felt this would be a good way to get moved closer to Oregon.  I ended up joining the Navy because we found out we were pregnant again with our second son and that was the only way I could join a military branch. She worked off and on as a nanny and later in the year at a coffee house working nights. We barely spent time together and when we did it was a lot of hard conversations or arguments about finances with making up intimately in the middle of the night between times of caring for the baby. She once scratched my neck with her fingernails during an argument. People I worked with noticed. It was a hard time and we knew change was on the horizon with jobs and moving. We did visit Oregon that summer though and had a great vacation at the beach with a borrowed 4x4 and staying at a hotel and picnicking out of a cooler as well as going to her brothers wedding. I was 26 and about to join the Navy to provide better for my family at all costs sacrificing myself for their benefit because I would have rather died than look like I didn't try my best for them.

I remember when our babies would kick and move around inside her belly. I loved laying by her and feeling her tummy. I would hum to the baby and hear them move and squirm. I loved giving our boys baths when they were babies too. We had our little bundles of our love, wrapped in a towel in our hands, so tiny and vulnerable. I miss those days and want to remember them with her, aside from this state of melancholy.

2010

The Navy recruiters would only take me if we rented out our home and had her stay with family during boot camp and training. We moved to a furnished apartment in Denver and put our things in storage. She was 5 months pregnant and our eldest was two. I shortly after was let go from my job. Our second son was born in April. I got a contract with the Navy at the last minute but didn't leave until August. We sold our beloved vehicles and lived off retirement funds for six months and moved down to Florida where her parents had just moved out of the blue for work, to stay with them until I left for boot camp. I applied for temporary work in Florida at a dozen places but had no luck in my three months there. I took care of our eldest a lot while she took care of the new baby. Being in Florida was a culture shock for us but we had our moments of romance and made the best of it. Eventually I left for boot camp in August. It was really hard and sad to be gone. She stayed in Florida and came to visit me with the baby at boot camp graduation in October. I then went to Connecticut for five months of training. It was also hard but at least I could call home every day and be in the same time zone. I visited Florida during the winter break and saw my boys and her. We went to Disney world and had a great time on her parents. We also made a romantic home movie I could enjoy while away from her. I flew back to Connecticut and tried to make the best of things. My roommate was very abusive of substances and I resisted the temptation for a long time but the threat of being submarine service bound and missing my family pushed me to drinking every weekend and getting messed up to escape before I left.

I remember when we drove to Key Largo, Florida and stopped at a crazy bird wildlife center. I remember our oldest was so amazed hearing a bird say hello back to us. It was so foreign and fun there. I am glad we all shared that experience together.

I remember our trip to the citrus grove in Florida. That was such a great day for our family. I always look back on that with really fond sentiment. I felt like I was in a beautiful family music video with them.

2011

I finished Submarine Training and got orders back to the Northwest. The plan was all coming together. I arrived first and bought a car and got our items moved from storage in Denver to our townhouse rental in Washington. She and the boys joined me a month later. I didn't report to my Sub for another month as they were at sea. She became pregnant again with our third son right after arriving. We had just bought a small car and were not planning on another child. Towards the end of the year I was working a lot and having a really hard time, being bullied and treated poorly at work plus our financial situation was still very difficult. Adjusting to the military was hard among younger men being 28. I dreaded each day in that environment but I tried to endure it for my family. I went to sea for a couple months at the end of the year stopping in Hawaii and California. During this time She reached out to her ex married affair partner after six years of no contact. She didn't tell me until later. She said she needed closure with him, we were not in counseling yet but she decided this was appropriate. I flew home early from sea and wanted to surprise her. The stress and trauma of this quick transition home after being to sea for the first time (which was also traumatic) made me want to drink and get messed up before flying. I arrived home and surprised her but I seemed off to her which I was but didn’t explain why, I have never done that since. I got to be home for two months almost work free while we celebrated the holidays and prepared for the new baby to be born. She started getting more involved with a church and building a community for us which was great. Our financial struggles almost led us to foreclosure of our home back in Colorado but by the grace of God we got it sold with a short sale just in time.

I remember when I came back from Hawaii and brought her a beaded necklace and she wore it naked with her big beautiful pregnant goddess belly and we made passionate hippy love together. I want to grow out my beard again and spend my life making hippy love and feeling free again.

2012

Our third son was born in January. It was a very positive birth experience and much less stressful than the other two. Shortly after I flew out to finish the other half of the deployment I had missed. I really focused on being positive and spiritually connected by reading my Bible at sea which was helpful. I called her when I arrived in Japan halfway through being gone. She was upset because she tested positive for an STD while trying to get on birth control. I became suspicious of her yet she was suspicious of me. We both got tested again and I was clean, she told me she had a false positive after all. This put a big strain on our trust, especially being so far away. This forced us to be honest with each other about some things such as her contact with her ex lover and my drinking to cope. We were both very upset until I returned home and we could start some counseling to work through things. Forgiveness seemed to be difficult for us. It brought up hurts of the past when we were 19. She also had severe postpartum depression that became worse after each birth. I was still having a hard time with work and the submarine environment. Our church friends tried to counsel us but it was not the most helpful. My submarine was scheduled for extended repairs and not going to sea for three years, I would be transferred before the end of that period. I used this time to bond with her and my boys. I wanted to get better involved in our community and do volunteer work and side jobs to earn extra money. Our boys were all given diagnosis's for autism which begun to fill our lives with appointments and challenges for years to come but we were a good team in dealing with all of it. It gave us something to work together on but took our focus away from working on our own personal issues and relationship with each other as much as we should have.

2013

We had new years with both sides of our family in a snowy mountain setting in Oregon. It looked like it was going to be a great year until her Grandpa passed away suddenly. It ripped our entire family apart but especially her. He kept the family grounded and she was very close to him, he really loved all of us. She and I started going on dates again because we had Navy sponsored child care. It was the beginning of a really good thing for us. Tragically one night after a date we were dancing with the boys on the patio and I tried to pick her up and I lost my balance and fell on her, breaking her collar bone severely. She needed surgery and was very mad at me for years to come. She has a scar, a metal plate and numbness in her chest. We worked through it with our community from church but she still is very mad at me. I feel more terrible about this incident than she could ever know. I would lose a finger in place of that incident if I could. I continued having a really hard time in the Navy and I didn't want to stay in but She insisted our boys needed care only the Navy could offer. She also said she would divorce me if I ever left the Navy. I took this threat seriously even though she assured me later that she would never actually do that. Against my own convictions I reenlisted because I wanted to do the best thing for my family. We moved into base housing at the end of summer and didn’t go out to do things as much anymore. The house was nice but it ****** us in, we also had less community with people around our home. I started volunteering at church more and doing work with special needs people. I felt like I was doing good things and that I had purpose all around. I think she appreciated this about me.

2014

We started seeing a professional counselor together and individually. It became a regular event. I worked on myself and she worked on herself. I had a lot of issues with my Mom and eventually broke off communication with her for my own well-being and the betterment of my family. I got past a lot of the bad feelings I had. She worked on her traumatic experiences and our relationship dynamics. Just when things were going well I got a new boss who made things hard for me and others at work and I started messing up more. I got in trouble for messing up a job at work and was given strike one on my record. She lost respect for me as a provider but I tried to stay strong showing her that I would continue to do my best.

I remember when we had an appointment in Tacoma and we had a brunch date together afterwards. She looked so beautiful that day, I took her picture and was so proud to enjoy  huevos rancheros and momosas with her. I remember going to the Tacoma Art Museum seeing the Georgia O’Keefe exhibit, we have a great time together doing new things and feeding each other's interests. I loved laughing with her too, sometimes we just bust up like nobody's around. I loved the sound of her laughter. I loved watching Portlandia with her, it is so funny to remember the funny place where we became close and be able to relate together.

2015

I kept working hard and being involved with family and appointments for my boys and her. I still maintained my volunteer work and part time side jobs. I got strike two with the Navy for messing up again... I had just gained orders to leave the sub for local shore duty. I could not get out of the extended repair situation soon enough. She was very disappointed in me and not so understanding. I worked through this situation with our counselor as did she. He always told her I am a good man and that I do a lot for her and the boys. It's true, I care more than anything about them, I made mistakes and I feel bad especially when I cause my family stress. I left for shore duty in April. It was a hard time adjusting to the new routine but eventually we seemed to make it work. That summer we took a trip to visit Texas where her parents had just moved from Florida. We spent a great night together for our 10th anniversary in a hotel in Texas and went dancing. We had a lot more time together as my work schedule was less. The more people we had in our home working with our kids on issues the less useful my input seemed. I was not included as much in making family decisions because they all seemed to happen while I was at work, despite my objections. We tried to get our budget under control but she still had anxiety discussing spending. She continued to struggle with depression and was put on medication because she had still been harming herself. She was put on Prozac daily and anti anxiety medication as needed. He family members were not very supportive of medication which upset her but I always tried to be supportive in seeking help and continued care for both of us.

2016

We had a busy routine of kids in school now and home school and preschool and appointments for all of us. She wanted to go to church less and less. I started drinking a couple beers at night almost every day. I tried to mask my stress from her mood swings. She decided not to go to church at all anymore and focused teaching the boys about Jewish traditions exclusively which was hard for me to adjust to and confusing for the boys. I loved her and wanted to be supportive. As usual I was submissive and removed myself from the Christian church and some friendships. I feel like we lost our community at that point. We searched for a good place to have a new community with Jewish people but it was like starting over. I felt like I converted to Christianity for her when we got together and now I had to convert again, either way I would have done it for her because I loved her that much. The kids were confused by this change. After trying and failing at many synagogues we finally found one that seemed right for us.

2017

We finally had some money in savings because I kept it a secret and ended up planning a trip to visit her parents in Texas but it fell through due to lack of military flights. Instead we spent three nights away in a nice hotel resort as a family in February. We had three days of pure family time. Playing Battleship and other games in our room as a family, watching movies and eating at all the different restaurants and getting room service. Going swimming everyday in the foggy pool. I love our family and how we can have a great time together doing nothing but at the same time so much. That was so peaceful and relaxing. I wanted to keep doing things like that together as a family before our boys got too old. Shortly after this vacation she wanted to go back to school, then we bought a third vehicle so she could. Shortly after this she changed her mind about school and wanted to buy another house instead. I went along with it to please her and we practically killed ourselves trying to get the move accomplished with not much help or money. We had a good year over all. We got away for a romantic anniversary together in the summer. Just before the boys were going to start public school in the fall, her parents moved back to the area. She had anxiety with this and cut off contact with her parents and brothers for a while. Her Dad called me very upset and I tried to keep the peace until they reconciled. I was doing better with work and made up for lost progress as well as making arrangements to change jobs in the Navy to something more fitting. Since the boys started public school, I planned on leaving for Navy training in my new position after the beginning of the new year when they would be at a more settled place in their routine.

I remember when we went to the Olympic Club for our anniversary and we stayed there for a night away. We drove the long way through the countryside talking about new music that she wanted to share with me and she made notes of it on my phone notepad. We brought our own cooler and picnic that included Session Lagers and chocolate. We checked in to our room and made noisy bohemian love on the edge of the creaky bed in our small European room inches from the door. Then we went to the theater downstairs and watched the late showing of a really interesting Sci-fi movie "Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets". We took showers and slept sweetly together. We made love again in the morning before we had a delicious brunch outside on the patio. We took the long way home and drove around on new roads and found our way out of cell phone reception. We figured out the road less traveled to get back to our home. We loved being alone and away together, just one night can make such a difference and mean so much.

I remember going to the Forest Theater to see Tarzan with our boys. That was such a great time. I would love to get our boys into theater and go see them someday. I wanted to keep our dreams and goals together alive and not lose opportunity and fall short by losing our partnership.

I loved going camping in Seabeck. Loading the truck with all our gear and getting away. Archer got sick from the cowboy caviar and I had to clean him and the tent up in the night. I was glad we had each other to be a team in our marriage in that situation as with all the other times. These sorts of things are what escape a person's mind when they are determined to get a divorce.

2018

We had a lot less money than the year before, again buying a house took its toll on finances as did the boys school and after school activities. I stayed very involved taking the boys to appointments and sporting practices. We stopped going to synagogue but tried to practice Judaism at home as much as possible, which I was very supportive of and involved with. She was still depressed and talking about suicide at times. I encouraged her to get help as I always had. Eventually she was diagnosed as Bipolar 2 and manic depressive by a new provider. She started taking new medicine for this and was worried I would want to leave her. I assured her I would never leave her and that I always wanted to work on things with her and help her. I left for training in Mississippi February 8th. It was going to be hard but I thought it might be good to have some time apart from each other to miss one another and reflect on things as well as prepare for times when I would be away at sea. I got in trouble in Mississippi for giving junior personnel a ride and being negligent of people who might be underage and possibly drinking, this became strike three. I never thought this could happen. I became recommend for separation from the Navy shortly after and was stuck in Mississippi for six months instead of six weeks. She was supportive through most of it but seemed to fall into hopelessness. Money was spent by her that we didn't have without discussion. She quietly leased appliances and tires and purchased a vehicle as well as having a secret bank account and email address. I discovered through our insurance company that she wanted to leave our policy for divorce. I didn't know this and she had even told the boys she wanted a divorce before I even knew. I was caught off guard and confused. I kept trying to communicate and reason with her but she didn't want to talk. I refused to give up and wrote emails and a letter but it only seemed to push her away further. By the time I left Mississippi she had filed for divorce and a restraining order against me saying I was unstable and a threat. I couldn't return to my home. My whole life fell apart in just a couple months. I found out she had been talking to other men in the Navy and keeping more secrets. I assumed this was her way of taking control during a difficult situation. I really needed her support during this hard time of transition out of the military. I became homeless, jobless and without my family in a month. I prayed to God that given time things might change between us but it was of no use. Bipolar had consumed whatever was left of my bride and there was no turning back.

I felt that our love was not one to be cast away. Other people might not understand or agree but what we had was truly special. We may have surely needed some time and space to get counseling as well as reconfigure and repair our marriage but I didn't feel like our relationship was irretrievably broken. She was so important to me and I thought she was the love of my life and would always have my heart. I wanted to be her partner in love and life, watching our boys grow up and being there to support each other. Being that she is Bipolar I knew she will need a lot of help and I was more than willing to assist her in making sure she was taking care of herself and not throwing herself into harm's way, ensuring she sticks with a plan we agree to for consistency. I cared about her deeply and had much compassion for her. I didn't believe she was thinking this through or thinking about the future. I really wanted to look at the long and short game with her, neither seemed appealing to me if we progressed but here we are. Things are not going to be easier. She will still have to face her problems and deal with me on a regular basis for the rest of our lives no matter what happens. She can believe her lawyer when they promise she'll get the moon and stars out of this in the end but they only see half of the story. Above all they want our money. It would have been good for her to face me in person and tell me she wanted to divorce and we could have started talking about it with a counselor to figure out how that could even work. Instead she chose to avoid as much responsibility for her actions as possible by doing everything in my absence as if I am not a real person. I had to find out about it from our insurance company and was last to know.

Immediately after I hear the word divorce I looked into her cell usage history and find she has a new military boyfriend that she talks to 20-30 times a day. She felt she owed me no explanation for this and it was none of my business. A mature person would have let me know about this months before and I would have seen it coming but there was no sign until it was seemingly too late. She strayed down a dark path and never turned back.

Her proposed parenting plan was cruel and had no thought put into it. Two hours a week with supervision, no holidays but father's day? She said she’s not trying to keep me from the kids but this is the exact opposite of what she’s saying with the paperwork she filed. She seems very mixed up and still you continues to make rash and sudden choices. Like a completely bogus restraining order against me that contradicts so many facts she has stated herself on record during my Navy retention process. She was so bold as to want to change her identity and even put it in ink on the divorce paperwork as well to a whole new name. That is not the actions of a stable person. She has since changed her mind again on that just as quickly as everything else in her recent life choices. I can't trust that any decisions she is making right now are for the right reasons or that she is of sound mind. I have never seen her so conflicted and confused, grasping at straws and running scared from herself.

Using the legal system so carelessly and going back and forth makes me feel like she is not ready to be making big choices and changes for her and our family. It is very unfair that she can’t consider my feelings on things and what I wish for the boys as well. Very reckless behavior. She can’t anticipate that the day would come where she has to face me and talk to me like an adult. She wants to hide behind the legal system which only leaves much to be unresolved. Ghosting me is not really an option in a marriage of 13 years with children.

Having relationship conversations is too difficult for her at this time and she would rather avoid it and skip to divorce because she thinks that will somehow be easier. I suspect she knows she is making poor choices, possibly out of fear and lust for something new and less painful than the reality of things right now. Our marriage was nowhere close to divorce when I left. She was sad to see me leave and woke with me at 3:30 am to say goodbye, making me coffee and cookies for me to take with.

Our community and accountability seems to be gone due to the continued trend of isolation that she is drawn to. The God fearing loving committed wife I thought I had is gone or trapped inside a terrified shell of herself. She cut me off from her family members and I can't discuss my concerns about her with them either. She only seems to have community with those who are not going to discourage her from these destructive choices.

I understand we have had issues and struggles but we are no worse off than other couples during challenging times. I think that because we loved each other so much it just hurt more when things got hard. I can't accept or believe this is justified or the right choice based on the positive trend we were on before I left. This was the longest break we have ever had from each other and I think she just needed someone to be there more for her, no matter who it was. Time can heal all wounds and I hope that is true for our relationship as co-parents.

She still refuses to tell me about why she wanted a divorce or talk about anything beyond caring for the kids. I have fought the restraining and I can see my boys again but I am still not allowed to my home without her permission.

I have risen from the ashes in just a couple months. I rent a room from a nice couple from our old church and obtained a good paying job while I continue paying the household bills.

This is a really hard time, this difficult spell could have been a tool to better our relationship. I wanted to experience more beautiful memories with her. We had so many more beautiful memories and dreams left to create. This is what marriage looks like to me now as I lower the casket.
This is a timeline of the major events during my 13 year marriage. Amidst the reality, I injected all the lovely memories that refuse to leave my mind.
RAJ NANDY Sep 2018
Dear Poet Friends, Torin Galleshaw from Charlotte NC, a Member of this Site, had requested me to compose about the Rise of Third *****. Therefore, I have commenced with the causes for its Rise in my Part One posted below. Planning to compose Part Two with ******’s Blitzkrieg campaign of Poland later. It is unfortunate that I am unable to post related Maps & Photos for better appreciation of my Readers! Such options are not available for us here! However, I have managed to post a copy with maps & photos in the E-mail ID of my friend Torin!  Kindly give comments only after reading this researched work of mine, during your spare time.  Thanking you, - Raj, New Delhi.

            STORY OF SECOND WORLD WAR – PART ONE
                            RISE OF THE THIRD *****
                                       By Raj Nandy

                                  INTRODUCTION
In this part I shall mainly deal with the causes leading to the Second World War,
Which had also created favourable conditions for the rise of Third ***** under ******.
The word ‘*****’ derives from old German word ‘rihhi’ meaning ‘realm’;  
But is also used to designate a kingdom or an empire in a broader sense.
Historically, the First ***** was the Medieval Holy Roman Empire which lasted till the end of the 19th Century.
While the Second ***** was the First German Empire from 1871 to 1918, when dynamic Otto Von Bismark had united all of Germany,
Which ended with its defeat in World War One and birth of the Weimar Republic.
The Third ***** refers to the **** German Empire under ******, Which lasted from 1933 till 1945, for twelve traumatic eventful years!
Historians opine that the ending of a war is equally important as
its beginning;
Since the causes for the start of a war is often to be found embedded in its ending!
The First World War came to an end on 28th of June 1919 as we all know.
With the signing of the Treaty at Versailles by the German Foreign Minister Hermann Muller and the ‘Big Four’.  (Britain, France, America, & Italy)
Yet it is rather ironical, that this Peace Treaty of Versailles, considered as President Woodrow Wilson’s ‘brain child’,
Had sowed the seeds of discontent resulting in the outbreak of the Second World War, and Adolf ******’s dramatic rise!

Though several causes are attributed for the outbreak of the Second World War by our Military Historians.
Let me try to summarise those causes which are considered to be more relevant.
Commencing with the harsh Treaty of Versailles, the British and French Policy of Appeasement, followed by Hyperinflation and the Great Depression of 1929, and failure of The League of Nations to maintain peace;  
Are relevant factors which collectively combined resulting in the outbreak of the devastating Second World War, scarring human memories for all time!
But not forgetting ******’s forceful and persuasive eloquence which mesmerised the Germans to rise up as a powerful Nation once again.
Since ****** promised to avenge the humiliation faced by Germany following the Treaty of Versailles,
Which was drawn up with vengeance, and dictated by the victorious Allies!

THE  ARMISTICE  AND TREATY OF VERSAILLES:    
Armistice means a truce for cessation of hostilities, which provides a breathing space for negotiating a lasting peace.
Now the Armistice ceasing the First World War was signed inside the railway carriage of the Allied Supreme Commander Marshal Foch, in the Forest of Compiegne,
On the 11th of November 1919, sixty km north of Paris, between the victorious Allies and vanquished Germany.
But in the meantime naval blockade of Germany had continued, and the German Rhineland was evacuated and partly occupied by the combined Allied troops!
Release of Allied POWs interned civilians followed subsequently; And the Reparations Clause of monetary compensation was strictly imposed on Germany!
Now, following a wide spread German Sailor’s Revolt towards the end of October 1918, Emperor Kaiser Wilhelm-II had abdicated;
And on the 9th of November Friedrich Ebert, as the new Social Democrat President of Germany, authorised his representative to sign the Compiegne Armistice.
We should remember here that this Armistice seeking cessation of hostilities did not stipulate any unconditional surrender;
And the signing of the Armistice by the German Social Democrats, was considered as ‘a stab in the back of the German army’ by majority of the Germans!
These issues get repeatedly mentioned by Adolf ****** in his eloquent speeches subsequently,
To arouse the spirit of German Nationalism, and resurgence of the ‘Master Aryan Race’ of the Germans, - in Germany!

The Versailles Treaty was signed on 28th of June 1919, exactly five years after the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand which had sparked World War One.
Let me mention few aspects of this Treaty which was detested by the Germans!
Germany lost 13% of its land, 12% of its people, 48% of its iron resources, 15% of its agricultural production, and 10% of its coal, following its implementation!
German army was reduced to 100,000 men, its Navy reduced to 36 ships with no submarines, its Air Force banned, and its union with Austria forbidden.
Now to use a Shakespearean phrase the ‘unkindest cut of all’ came in the shape of Article 231,  the ‘War Guilt Clause’ of the Versailles Treaty,
Which provided the legal basis for the payment of war reparations by Germany.
The reparation amount of 132 billion gold marks (US $33 billion) to cover the civilian damage caused during the war, now had to be paid by Germany!
Thus the humiliation, resentment, and the virtual economic strangulation following the Versailles Treaty,
Was exploited by extremist groups such as ******’s **** Party.
And in the decades to follow, ******’s Nazis would take full control of Germany!

NOTES: Following Versailles Treaty, Alsace-Lorraine captured by Germany in 1870 was returned to France. The SAAR German coalfield region was give to France for 15 yrs. Poland became independent with a corridor to the sea dividing Germany into two. Danzing, a major port in East Prussia, became a free city under the League of Nation. Finland, Lithuania, Latvia, & Czechoslovakia became independent. Industrial area of German Rhineland, forming a buffer zone between Belgium &France,was
demilitarised.

WOODROW WILSON’S  14 - POINT PEACE INITIATIVE  & THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS:
American President Wilson was an idealist and a visionary, who in a speech to the US Congress on 8th Jan 1918,
Introduced a 14 Point Charter as a platform for building global peace, based on the principles of transparency, self-determination, and Democracy.
But for the first time in US history, the Republican-led US Senate rejected this Peace Treaty, and prevented America from joining the newly created League!
The US Senate wanted to retain its sovereignty without external entanglements;
Free from the League of Nation’s political dictates in its foreign commitments!
The Irish immigrants refused to support Wilson's Fourteen Points because Wilson was concerned about stopping WWI, rather than forcing the British to set Ireland free.
Many Jews also refused to back Wilson, since he was paying too much attention to the War, and not enough to the Balfour Declaration of 02 Nov 1917, -
Which promised an Independent Jewish State with a distinct Jewish identity.

The League of Nations had emerged from Wilson’s 14 Points on the 10th Jan 1920, with its HQs at Geneva, Switzerland, but it had no peacekeeping forces those days!
The League had failed to prevent invasion of Chinese Manchuria in 1932 by Japan;
Italy’s invasion of Ethiopia in 1935; annexation of Sudetenland and Austria by Germany!
The Axis countries Germany, Italy, and Japan, withdrew from the League subsequently.
Thus the League of Nations was disbanded in 1946 officially!
But President Wilson’s ceaseless efforts for global peace did not go unrecognised,
Since on the 10th of December 1920, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize!
While his disbanded League of Nations, as the first global humanitarian organisation,
Continued to survive in spirit with the establishment of United Nations Organisation on the 24th October, 1945.

ECONOMIC CAUSES - FOLLOWED BY THE GREAT DEPRESSION OF 1929 :
Germany emerged from the First World War with loss of 25,000 square miles of territory;
Loss of seven million inhabitants, and a staggering debt imposed by the Versailles Treaty!
The Wiemar Republic, after abdication of Emperor Kaiser Wilhelm-II  to Holland,
For the first time in German history, established a Democratic Constitution with Friedrich Ebert as its first President.
But The Republic first had to consolidate itself by squashing the Spartacist Revolt of January 1919 led by the extreme Leftists, and inspired by the Russian Bolshevik Communists!
The Freikorps, in March 1920, an Ex-Soldiers Rightist Group, tried to overthrow the Wiemar Republic with support of their Rightist allies and their own veteran troops!
This was soon followed by a Communist attempt to takeover of the Industrial Rhur;
But fortunately, all these uprisings against the Republic were effectively subdued!
But the 33 Billion Dollars of Reparations hung over the Wiemar Republic like the legendary ‘Sword of Damocles’, followed by the Great Depression of 1929;
Coupled with the ‘Policy of Appeasement’ practised by the British and the French;
Became the most important causes for ******’s expansionist ambition and his short- lived meteoric rise to fame!

GERMAN PAPER CURRENCY & HYPERINFLATION:
Gold Mark was the currency used by the German Empire from 1873 to 1914 only.
But to pay for the costs of the ongoing First World War, Germany suspended the gold standard, and decided to fund the war by Borrowings entirely,
Hoping to pay back the loans after Germany achieves Victory.
But having lost the war, and faced with a massive debt imposed by the Allies,
Exchange rate of the Mark against the US Dollar steadily devalued and declined!
Papiermark became the German currency from 04th August 1914 onward, when link between the Mark and gold reserve was abandoned,
In order to pay for the ongoing expenses of the First World War with paper marks, which was constantly being printed!
But later after the war, when the London Ultimatum of May 1921 demanded payment of war reparations in gold or in foreign currency only,
Even more paper marks got printed by the Republic to buy those foreign currency !
By December 1922 hyper-inflationary trends emerged, when the US Dollar became equivalent to 7,400 German Marks, with a 15-fold increase in the cost of living !
By the fall of 1922 when it became impossible for Germany to make further payments,
The French and Belgium armies occupied Germany’s Ruhr Valley area, its prime industrial region!
French and the Belgians hoped to extract payment in kind, but a strike by the workers of the Ruhr area their hopes belied!
The Wiemar Republic printed more paper notes to pay and support the workers of the Ruhr area,
When hyperinflation had peaked at 4,210,500,000,000 German Marks, to a US Dollar!
Paper currency having become worthless, some form of ancient barter system began to be used instead!

STABILISATION OF GERMAN ECONOMY WITH ONSET OF  THE GREAT DEPRESSION:
Following the hyperinflation Chancellor Josef Cuno’s cabinet resigned in August 1923,
When Gustav Stresemann became the new Chancellor of Germany.
Stresemann’s Government had introduced the Rentenmark as a new stable currency,
To end the hyperinflation which had plagued Wiemar Germany.  
Rentenmark was backed by real goods, agricultural land and business,
Since gold was not available in a beleaguered German economy those days!
When One Rentenmark was equivalent to One million, million, old German Mark;
While One US Dollar was equivalent to only 4.2 Rentenmarks.
Though Stresemann’s Government lasted for 100 days only, Stresemann continued to serve as the Foreign Minister in successive Coalition Governments of the Republic,
Till his death in the month of October 1929, but working for the betterment of Germany all the while!
His ‘Policy of Fulfilment’ stabilised German economy with a 200 Million Dollars loan from America under the Dawes Plan in 1924,
Which had also ensured the evacuation of France from the occupied Ruhr area, with their future reparations payments ensured.
Stresemann’s signing of the Locarno Pact in London on 1st Dec 1925 with France, Belgium, Great Britain, and Italy, was considered as his achievement and a feat!
Since it made Germany to enter the League of Nations ensuring stability and peace;
While the Noble Peace Prize was awarded to Stresemann for his efforts in 1926!
Later, the Young Plan of 1929 further reduced German reparations payment by 20%, while extending the time frame for the payments to 59 years!
But following a sudden Wall Street Stock Market Crash in late October of 1929,
The American Banks were forced to recall money from Europe and the Young Plan;.
Which created acute financial distress when unemployment soared to 33.7%  in Germany in 1931, and quickly rose to 40% during the following year!
Lausanne Conference was held in Switzerland in 1932 by Great Britain, Germany, and France, to further reduce the War Debts imposed by the Versailles Treaty.
But in Dec 1932, the US Congress had rejected this Allied War Debt Reduction Plan completely.
However, no further payments were made by Germany due to the Great Depression;
And by 1932, Germany had paid only 1/8 of the total sum required to be paid as per their pending wartime reparations!

NOTES: Rentenmark was issued on 15 October 1923 to stop the hyperinflation in Wiemeer Germany. Reichmark was the currency in Germany from 1924 to 20 June 1948 in West Germany , when it was replaced by the Deutsche Mark; but had continued in East Germany until 23 June when it was replaced by East German Mark.
During the Stresemann Years of Stability from 1924 to 1929, (prior to the onset of the Great Depression), with help of American financial aid, created more housing & production in Germany. Dada & Expressionist Art forms flourished, followed by modern architecture; also the Philosophy of Existentialism of Thomas Mann – influenced the Western culture. Paul Whiteman's Band for the first time brought in American Jazz to Germany, and Jazz signified the liberation of German youth and women folks of the younger generation generally. But the US Stock Market Crash had unfortunately ended this short lived euphoria, and as it soon became a global phenomena!                                


FAILURE OF THE WIEMAR REPUBLIC & THE GREAT DEPRESSION WHICH BENEFITED THE NAZIS:
Last Days of Wiemar Republic:
Ever since Otto Von Bismarck that ‘Man of iron and steel’, united Germany into a single Empire in the year Eighteen Hundred & Seventy One,
For the first time a Constitution for a Parliamentary Democracy was drawn up in August 1919, in the eastern German city of Wiemar.
Wiemar was the intellectual centre of Germany associated with musicians like Franz List, and writers like Goethe and Schiller.
The Wiemar Republic of Germany which had lasted from 1919 till 1933 had seen,
20 different Coalition Governments, with frequent elections and changing loyalties!
Due to a system of proportional representations, and the presence of very many political parties those days,  
No single party could obtain absolute sole majority in the Reichstag Parliament!
The longest Coalition Govt. was under Chancellor Bruning, which had lasted for only 2 years and 61 days!     (From 30 March 1930 to 30 May 1932)
Now, to understand the reasons for the failure to maintain a Democratic form of Government by the Wiemar Republic,
It becomes necessary to monitor its ‘dying gasps’ during its closing years so to speak!
Since faced with the economic depression Chancellor Bruning had worsened the unemployment situation by adopting stringent and unpopular measures!
Thereby having lost popular political support, Bruning with the approval of President Hindenburg, invoked emergency powers under Article 48, to survive his last few months and years!
During the years 1931 and 1932  it is seen, Bruning had used this Emergency Clause 44 and 66 times respectively!
Thus his so-called ‘Presidential form of Govt.’ had undermined Wiemar Democracy!
If Burning was the ‘Republic’s Undertaker’, now remains a debatable issue of History!
But Burning’s vigorous campaign made Hindenburg to get re-elected as the President;
Thereby he had removed the defeated Adolf ****** out of the Presidential race!
Therefore, later when ****** became the Chancellor on 30 Jan 1933, Bruning had very wisely fled from Germany!

Following Bruning’s resignation in May 1932 came Chancellor Papen’s ‘Cabinet of Barons’ consisting of individuals who were not members of the German Reichstag!
While in the election of July 1932 ******’s **** Party won 230 seats, making it the largest party in the Reichstag.
But ****** refused to form a coalition with Papen, because he wanted to become the Chancellor himself !
Now General von Schleicher advised President Hindenburg that the German Army,
Would not accept Papen’s use of Article 48 to remain as the Chancellor of Germany!
Therefore following Papen’s resignation, Schleicher took over on the 04th of December 1932 as the new German Chancellor.
Schleicher tried to restore a democratic form of government to get the Wiemar Republic back on its feet.
But in the ensuing political power struggle Papen wanted to take revenge on Schleicher for his removal from power and defeat.
So Papen persuaded Adolf ****** to become the Chancellor, and retain for himself the post of Vice-Chancellor.
In doing so, Papen mistakenly thought that he would be able to reign in the self-assertive Adolf ******!
Papen finally made President Hindenburg agree to his proposal, and on 30th of Jan 1933,
****** became the New Chancellor, with approval of the President!
A month later a sudden fire in the Reichstag made ****** invoke Article 48, in order to squash the suspected Left Wing Communists;
But while doing so, the Press was muzzled, and many Civil Rights of the German people were abolished, inclusive of their right of assembly and free speech!
****** acted swiftly, and by passing the Enabling Act on 23 March, 1933, armed himself  with dictatorial powers for enacting laws without the approval of the Reichstag whenever necessary!
Thereby ****** threw Democracy to History’s wasteland most unfortunately!
Following the death of Hindenburg on 29 June 1934, ****** combined the powers of the President and the Chancellor, and became known as the FUHRER!
Historians generally agree the Enabling Act of 1933, as the date for establishment of The German Third *****.

THE POLICY OF APPEASEMENT AND GERMAN AGGRESSION:
The horrors of trench warfare with the rattling of machine guns and bursting of poisonous nerve gas shells,
Even after 20 years remained fresh, in the minds of all World War One participants!
Therefore, it was natural for British and French Prime Ministers Neville Chamberlain and Edouard Daladier initially,
To grant political and material concessions to an aggressive Germany, for the sake of peace and stability.
Thus the diplomatic stance of Appeasement between 1935 and 1939 followed by the French and the British, was mainly to avoid another dangerous armed conflict!
But the trusting Mr. Chamberlain had underestimated ******, who had served in the German Army as a Corporal, winning the Iron Cross during the last Great War!
****** was not afraid of war, but wanted to avenge the Treaty of Versailles and its punitive dictated peace;
And also establish for the superior German Aryan race a lasting Third *****!
Therefore, having consolidated his power as the Fuhrer along with his trusted **** Party cronies, he withdrew from the League of Nations in October 1933.
Introduced conscription in March 1935 in Germany, and embarked on a mission to rebuild a new modernised German Army for combat on land, air, and sea!
In March 1936, in another open violation of the Versailles Treaty, ****** re-occupied the demilitarised Rhineland, followed by a Treaty of Alliance with Japan and Italy.
The much desired Anschluss (or merger) with Austria, the country of birth of ******,
Saw the German Army in March 1938, triumphantly and peacefully marching into Vienna!
Now with the Munich Conference of 19 September 1938, this Policy of Appeasement is said to have reached its climatic peak!
The Sudetenland area, consisted of 3 million Germans were made
to join Czechoslovakia when the frontiers were drawn in 1918-19,
Much against the wishes of the Germans!
When ****** wanted to annex this Sudetenland area, Britain, France, Germany and Italy, met at Munich to diffuse an explosive situation peacefully.
It was agreed at Munich that once Sudetenland joins Germany, ****** will not invade Czechoslovakia and honour the terms of peace.
But on 15th March 1939, in violation of the Munich Agreement, ******’s army invade and occupied Czechoslovakia, thereby openly flouting the Policy of Appeasement!

NOTES: ******’s desire for ‘LEBENSRAUM’ or ‘increase of living space’ for the Germans, commenced with his ‘Border Wars’, which soon turned into a Global War because of the ‘appeasement policy’ of the Allies. ****** had secured his Eastern Front with a treaty with the Stalin, since fighting on two fronts would have been very difficult for the Germans.

Now when ******’s army invaded Poland on 1st of September 1939, it became ‘the last straw on the camel’s back’ for the Western Allies!
Committed to the Anglo-Polish Defence Pact of 25 August, 1939, both Britain and France declared war on Germany,
Which I propose to narrate in Part Two of my Second World War Story.  
The Policy of Appeasement no doubt gave some time for Britain, to regain its depleted military strength,  but Adolf ****** had viewed it as a sign of weakness!
With Russia and America initially as non-participants, ****** became more confident and arrogant!
Thereby turning his border wars into a global conflagration lasting six long years.
When the use of advanced technology, resulted in greater loss and casualties;  
Which was followed by the holocaust and unprecedented human suffering!
I would like to conclude my present narration with a poem by English soldier-poet Seigfried Sassoon, who participated in the First World War on the Western Front.

DREAMERS  -  by Siegfried Sassoon
Soldiers are citizens of death's gray land,
Drawing no dividend from time's to-morrows.
In the great hour of destiny they stand,
Each with his feuds, and jealousies, and sorrows.
Soldiers are sworn to action; they must win
Some flaming, fatal ****** with their lives.
Soldiers are dreamers; when the guns begin
They think of firelit homes, clean beds, and wives.

I see them in foul dug-outs, gnawed by rats,
And in the ruined trenches, lashed with rain,
Dreaming of things they did with ***** and bats,
And mocked by hopeless longing to regain
Bank-holidays, and picture shows, and spats,
And going to the office in the train.
…………………………………………………………………………
Thanks for reading patiently, from Raj Nandy of New Delhi.
  *ALL COPYRIGHTS ARE WITH THE AUTHOR ONLY
Bella Jul 2018
Sometimes I get stuck in this state of Darkness
where my eyes can see
but it's like my head is just pitch black
and I almost wish I couldn't see anything,
like I wish I could just curl myself into a ball so tightly that I disappear from space for a while

sometimes I get stuck in this space
and I feel like my tears and my thoughts
are climbing up my esophagus and clogging my throat
blocking my airway
suffocating me from the inside

maybe I never told you I was depressed because who wants to relive that moment
that choking hazard moment of cotton ***** in my throat

maybe I never told you I was depressed because there are no words I can use to describe it that don't transform themselves into their meanings
that don't take over my mind
crawl through my head like little worms
eating away at my brain
my thoughts
my skin

have you ever thought of a traumatic experience and then felt those events happening again
felt the dark hole of life-threatening-trauma attack your mind
Shiver through your body
like it was a demon you let in through a memory-
through a word

maybe I didn't tell you I was depressed
because I wasn't strong enough
my depression fills me to the brim
fills my head and my chest
my arms and my fingers
I can feel it moving through my body
I can feel it expanding and engulfing everything inside of me
every last vein, nerve, *****, and tissue
how can you expect me to have the energy to fight
how can you expect me to have the energy to pick up the phone
to open my mouth
how can you expect me to have energy-to have the courage to utter the words of how I feel
I feel so worthless
in those moments I feel like there's this black whole inside me and it's consuming everything
it's taking everything but my skin
and it disgusts me

can you imagine the feeling,
having something so utterly repulsive on your skin you had to scrape it off immediately
It felt like you needed to be cleansed
like you needed a shower
take that feeling
now imagine it being under your skin
imagine, every muscle ***** vein nerve every cell in your body underneath your epidermis disgusts you
imagine all you wanted to do was to
GET
IT
OFF
and you can't
no matter how hard you try
you can't scrape it off
you can't claw It off

imagine you're scared of spiders
now imagine you're covered in spiders
and someone's holding down your arms
so you can't get them off
imagine them walking on your skin
in your mouth
crawling on your open eyes
in your ears
you're cringing at your own skin
You can feel them going down your throat
Their disgusting tickle in the pit of your stomach
in every crevice of your body
their tunneling under your skin
and you can't get them off
what are you supposed to do
but cry
My best friend's mom who doesn't believe in depression asked why I never told her I was depressed...
Diversity of motivation among self-harming individuals

An estimated one in twelve teenagers has committed self-harm. Of those many will continue self-injuring into young adult hood. Yet older adults are not immune to committing this act. In 2003-2004 adults age 25-44 were responsible for nearly fifty percent of reported/discovered self-harm cases.  There are many reasons that people self-harm. These reasons may include self-harming as a survival mechanism, self-harm as an outer expression of inner emotional turmoil, and self-harm as a means to exercise control over one’s environment.
Contrary to popular thought, only one in ten people who make the decision to self-harm are suicidal. The majority of people who cause injury to themselves willfully have a wish to avoid killing themselves. The act of self-harm is developed as a “technique” to cope and survive the afflictions of life. How can we know that this is the reasoning or thought behind the action of self-harm? “Cutters” typically reason out the least amount of damage that will “remedy” the stress intensive situation that they find themselves in, and exercise an enormous amount of restraint in inflicting only a measured amount of damage. Cutters’ common logic is that through this expression of injury, further damage to their selves may be headed off. --------, a former cutter, attests to the reality of this when he says, “Every time that I touched a blade to my skin, I would resist making a larger cut, a deeper wound. Every time that I hurt myself, I did so only in response to what drove me over the edge; Each time the amount of physical damage that I did was the very least that I could muster. I fought to do the least damage I could, no matter how intense the pain that I felt became.” He sums it up rather nicely.
Secondly, self-harm is used as an outward expression of deeper, more complex emotional and psychological phenomena. It is not a diagnosis; it is a symptom. It is a symptom of a struggle that is inherited by victims of abuse, those who lose a loved one, or experience other traumatic events during their childhood. These groups are far more likely to indulge in self-harm. One study conducted by Boudewyn and Liem found that of those college students that reported a history of self-harm, fifty two percent had been sexually abused as a child. Those that self-harm do not simply cut to cut, burn to burn, or mutilate to mutilate. There is a deeper motivation. This motivation is commonly emotional. These motivational emotions are often the results of tragic or traumatic life experiences. It is seldom that a cutter’s motivation is a want for attention.  In fact, most cutters are chameleons.
Self- harm is used as a tool to exercise control in a chaotic environment over which one would not otherwise have any means to control. Among chaos and turmoil such as the loss of a parent or close friend, relational betrayal, divorce of one’s parents, or consistent, one time, or sporadic physical, emotional, or ****** abuse an individual is radically more likely to engage in self-harm. Outside reasoning on this is only speculative. For this reason it is valuable to look at the action from the perspective of those who commit it. Cody, the same individual mentioned earlier says something else that lines up with this common scholarly opinion. He says “I remember the very first time I cut myself intentionally. I was in the ninth grade, in the school bathroom. I had just experienced what I saw as betrayal by my best friend of about ten years. I felt like I lost him. I felt like things were spinning out of control, and I couldn’t control the way I felt about it all. The only way I could feel that control was with something sharp in my hand.” This is characteristic not only of ----- but also of many other cutters.
Cutters are not (necessarily) crazy. On the surface it may appear that cutting goes against the ingrained survival and self-preservation instincts in human beings. This is actually the opposite of the truth. Many who cut feel that if they don’t inflict smaller harm to themselves that they may indeed fall to suicide. They feel that by letting out their pain in increments, and escaping in fragments, that they can slay the thoughts of suicide and urges to escape that they carry. When at the edges of rational, some instincts may take different forms. What may seem counter intuitive – an act of self-harm – becomes the definition of an instinct that it seems to defy. The desire to survive becomes so strong that it is necessary to inflict pain. This is not uncommon to survival situations. For example, the movie 127 Hours reenacts the experience of a man trapped under a boulder in a beautiful and secluded gorge. He cut off his own arm with a dull multi-tool in order to escape death. That act is the epitome of self-harm as a survival instinct.
Cutting could lead to a series of events that tailspin out of control. Loss of control could take the form of the spiral of therapies and prescriptions that would follow if it were discovered that one were cutting , or it could be the accidental slip of a blade gone too far. It could end in hospitalization. It could even end in death. However, those individuals who choose to cut, as long as sober, take precautions to avoid discovery or more injury than is intended. They are meticulous, careful even. They reason out how, where, and when they can cut “safely”. They are very much in control over the act, when they feel they cannot be in control of anything else.
It may rationally appear that pain is pain. That it would make no difference whether out or inward, because whatever its state, the pain is still owned by the individual. However, emotions are often harder to process than physical events. A burning rage, hate or guilt may well be harder to cope with than a burn to one’s arm, leg, or hand. An emotional cut to the bone may be less painful than a physical one. It may be said that the act does not transform the pain, but multiplies it. This in essence may be true, but one form of pain allows a man to ignore another. A pinch may allow a man to ignore the emotional pain of a nightmare. A small cut may allow ignorance of the bigger cut on one’s spirit or psyche.
There are widely varying and increasingly complex variations of motivation and cause of self-harm. They may include, but are absolutely and in no way limited to: self-harm as a coping or survival mechanism, self-harm as a tool to exercise control over one’s increasingly chaotic environment, and self-harm as an outer expression of inner emotional turmoil. To believe that cutting is simple is to nearly deny it altogether. Its essence is complicated. Stereotyping self-harm or self-harmers may well lead to opinions that will ostracize or further encourage the occurrence of self-harm.  Since the motivation and causes of self-harm are undeniably complex, to attempt to brush this under a rock would be to diminish its importance, and to deny healing to those who need to understand it.
{i remember}

She comes to presence
in a great wave of grief
that has no bottom.

{water cannot swim}

Feeling the unbearable
weight of womanhood
tearing me open,
revealing my own sorrows.

{a channel of life}*

To be a gate of love and blood,
the flesh of desire,
bearer of all burdens,

was so traumatic I was reborn
in the body of a man.
Cat Fiske Apr 2015
Polite
Typical
Smiley
Daughter

Pointlessly
Trusting
School
District

Professor
Turns-blind-eye
Struggling
Drastically

Packets
Turn-to
Stacks
Deficient

Panic Attacks
Turn-to
Self
Destruction

Pulling
Teeth
Sick
Design

Plan­s
To
Stop
Discussing

Peace
To-her
Silence
Disturbs

People
Talked
She
Distracted

Passed
The
Snacks-to
Dinners

Pulled
The
Same
Dimensions

Pre-K
Then
Smaller
Didn't

Pause
Third-Grade
So
Dead

Parents
Though
She
Drowned

Piled
Thoughts
Suffocated-her
Dexterity

Patient
There
Suffering
Depression

Problems
To-many-to
Score
Dispute

Progress
That
Shockingly
Developed

Potentially
Taken-away-the
Suffering
Dramatically

Poor
Tiny
Sweet
Doll

Par­t
Traumatized
Sleep
Deprived

Phobic
though
Sixth grade
Doesn't

Play
Though
Six-Years-of
Death

Until... The little girl, learned she had,
Post
Traumatic
Stress
Disorder
and, school treating her badly is only one of her three traumatizing events.
this is about my very first traumatizing event that caused my PTSD, I have lived though 2 others, But this first one is caused by the school i go to denying me help when I have a learning disability, this caused my mom and me to argue, making her sometimes emotionally and physically abusive, that's where the second one comes in, and the third was a stem off of what i thought was normal, and also only knowing English based on what i had taught myself, because that resource wasn't provided for me, when a boyfriend was being abusive i didn't know it wasn't okay, because its what I was used to at home, I thought it was okay and normal. its been a year later, I'm in 10th grade. Yelling, or loud places make me trigger, school in general makes me trigger, because the trauma never stopped, and at home, when ever my mom get aggravated over the school, she takes it out on me, and my dad, and everyone. But again, I'd of never had these added traumas if a therapist didn't explain to me my life and the right and wrongs, I'd of love to go my whole like thinking my relationships where fine.
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)
There is no need to dwell on the exterior cliche of an injured soldier, the propaganda is superficial. Civilians have only plastic green men, heavy dusty movie set costumes, and Army-of-One heroes to populate stereotypes. Keep your images larger than life, no use touching up a paint-by-number. Mine was banal, foolish, and 19; enough said.

One fence is the fraternity itself, the next is brain injury. No other way to understand but be there. A Solid-American-Made-Dashboard cracked my forehead at 45mph.
Crumpling into the footwell,
unaware that the flatbed's rear bumper
was smashing thru the passenger windshield above me
the frame stopped just shy of decapitating my luckily unoccupied seat.
Our vehicle's monstrous hood had attempted to murderously bury us under,
but the axle stopped momentum's fate and ended the carnage under dark iron.
Shards of my identity joined the slow, pulverized, airborn chaos.
Back, Deep, Gone.

Unconsciousness is the brain's frantic attempt to re-wire neurons, jury rig broken connections, the doctor's desperate attempt to re-attach, stand back and say, good enough. Essential systems limply functioned, but unessential ones were ditched. Years later a military doctor diagnosed an eventual triage: Hypothalimus disconnected from the Pituitary Gland, Executive Function damaged, long pathways for emotional regulation interrupted.

I woke up still kinda bleeding, crusty blood in my hair, a line of frankenstein stitches wandering across my forehead.   My sense of self had literally dissolved into morning dust floating in a sterile hospital sunbeam.  My name was down the hall, words and the desire to speak were on a different floor.  Life became me and also a separate me under constant renovation, a wrecking ball on one half, scaffolding and raw 2x4's the other.

Waking up in the hospital, I realized I needed help to get the blood cleaned up.   A nurse came in, largely glared at me in disregard, and quickly left… for an hour.   She returned and brusquely dropped a useless ace comb and gauze on the blanket over my feet and abandoned me again.  This was my introduction to the shame of a VA hospital.  I minced my way to the bathroom, objectively examined my face in the mirror with shocking stitches above one swollen eye.  Gingerly rinsing my hair, the water ran pink in white porcelain.  I remembered the sound in my skull between my ears when a doctor scraped a metal tool across my skull, cleaning debris before stitching.  I recalled that in the ER I was asking Is he ok, repeating it like a broken record, knowing I should stop but I couldn’t.  There was also perhaps a joke about an Excedrin headache.

It was morning, and since there was no such thing as time or purpose or feelings anymore, I wandered to the hall with my only companion, the IV pole. One side was a wall of windows, and I was, what, 10 or 12 stories up from the streets of a much larger city than where I crashed.  The hall was warm and sunny.  I wheeled my companion to a blocky square vinyl chair to sit next to a pay phone.  I didn’t have any thoughts at all, or care about it.   After about an hour my first name floated up from the void, then with some effort my last name.  It took the rest of the morning to remember I had a brother.  After lunch we resumed our post, and I spent the afternoon in concentration piecing together his phone number.  God had pushed the reset button.

Thirty years ago the doctors didn't understand head injuries; they only recognized the physical symptoms. At first there was good reason to be permanently admitted to the hospital.  My blood pressure was unstable, sometimes so low that drawing blood for tests caused my veins to collapse even with baby needles.  My thyroid had shut down completely, only jump-started again with six months of Synthroid.  I had to learn to live with crashing blood sugar and fluctuating appetite.  For years afterwards, any stress would cause arrhythmias, my heart filling and skipping out of sync, blood pressure popping my skull.  Will the clock stop this time?  

There is always at least one momentous event in every person’s life that becomes punctuation, before and after.  The other side of Before the accident truly was a different me.  I have a vague recollection of who that person may have been, and occasionally get reminders.   Before, I was getting recruiting letters from Ivy League colleges and MIT, a high school senior at sixteen.  After, I couldn’t balance a checkbook or even care about a savings account in the first place.  Before, I had aced the military entrance exam only missing one question, even including the speed math section.  They told me I could chose any rating I wanted, so I chose Air Traffic Control.  Twenty years later, I thumbed through old high school yearbooks at a reunion.   I saw a picture of me in the Shakespeare Club, not recalling what that could have been about.   On finding a picture of me in the Ski Club I thought, Wow, I guess I know how to ski.   A yellowed small-town newspaper article noted I was one of two National Merit Scholars; and in another there’s a mention of a part in the High School Musical.  

This side of After, I kept mixing right with left, was dyslexic with numbers, and occasionally stuttered with word soup.  Focus became separated from willpower, concentration was like herding cats.  The world had become intense.

(chapter 1 continues in memoir)
Katie Smith Jul 2014
I’m sick of hearing my life’s a haiku.
I’m into magic, love, and other sorts of things that are typically voodoo.
I’m half ***** from a half assed absent African baby boomer brat.
I’m half white trash.
Here’s a well formed of dried tears turned into something to sooth my canine teeth.
It tastes like Moonshine.
I can’t swim anymore, so I’m here drowning in a concrete pool.
Always, I look for the hell in you.

I sharpen my boot knife for ****** assault protection.
The first swipes for the plus 200,000 in counting.
The seconds for the 66 percent underreported.
The lasts for me,
the 29 percent victims aged 17, 16, 15, 14, 13, and 12.

We have a higher rate of risking everything.
For depression x3.
For committing suicide x4.
For post traumatic stress disorder x6.
For alcohol abuse x13.
For drug abuse x26.

You all think I’m crazy,
I’m not.

I sometimes get called
stupid, ugly, *****, and thot.

I’m in pain, in sorrow.
I can’t help it.
He did it.
No one can undo it.
What do we do about it?

I wont scream, I won't cry.

I’ll ask how he’s doing with glitter and tears in the corner of my eye.
And after he's done molesting me,
"Want to go grab some coffee or tea?"
Personally, I like the cafe down the street.
They sell good brunch with amazing croissants.

And after this is over,
I’d ask him how it was while he turned me over.
Silence Screamz Oct 2014
Devastated
Mental
War

Trauma
Decapitated
Enemies

Alone
Fear
Com­bat

Tortured
Lost
Sounds
Crazy
P.T.S.D.  ..  A serious issue for veterans
I am a Gulf War Veteran  .. This is for my brothers in arms
An innocent heart
Broken, but somewhat mended,

Battered and bruised
Is what it is rendered.

Torn fragments scattered,
Widely spread,

Tarnished, traumatic memories
Stored in her head.

Constantly torturing herself,
Wondering how different
Life could have been,

If, but only,
When she was younger,
Traumatic situations,
She hadn't encountered,
Experienced, felt, or seen.

She had no choice but to follow
The path of forgiveness
To remain sane,
She realised that long ago,

Forgiveness became
A minute-by-minute decision  
She had to make,
But still, her PTSD, Anxiety
And Depression didn't leave her...
Oh no!

She still can't help feeling frustrated,
Knowing that her life
Wasn't meant to turn-out tainted
This way,

As grateful as she is
For all of her countless blessings,
She still cannot rid her tainted,
Traumatic memories,
They torture her every single,
Blessed, precious day.

By Lady R.F. (C)2017
This one goes out to all the Warriors
Fighting a daily battle,
Whilst keeping it as together as they can!
God grant each of you strength, endurance,
And peace of heart and mind!
Superheroes!!
Darianshae Jan 2018
Secrets can haunt you forever.
Sometimes when something so traumatic happens to you, you can’t find it in yourself to speak up. As much as you want to scream for help you lay there empty knowing there’s no way of going back to the girl you once used to be. The girl you never cared for but now the girl you longed to be .
It was just a drink with friends, you thought. You were having fun, you thought. But silly you, just because you told him no doesn’t mean he was going to listen.
You never once thought the fun night you had would of ever robbed you of feeling any less in the world than you already did. You were wrong.
You told yourself it was nothing until you started to believe it. You were so good at putting it deep in the back of your mind .
Three Years pass but the past in your head kept playing over and over again. You will never be the same girl again.
Being silent ruined you. No, he ruined you.
You will never truly feel safe again as you feel men’s eyes glare at you piercing throughout your entire entity embodying the pain once again.
Karijinbba Jul 2018
I STILL EXIST- I STILL EXIST
My pen writes
I still Exist

and an empty feeling engulfs me
I am painting a purple tree
I tell my family counselor
That the paint reminds me
Of arsenic Greek cheese dust
That a human predator
two faced fiancee
placed on my green salad in 1976
He said he would teach me how Greeks killed with love at sea
Then kindly offered
To bring
breakfast and lunch
for me in bed
(Ladden with poison)
While I ate it he danced Zorba the Greek!
His jealous raicist medeas mistresses knew his past crimes
I didn't I was very naive
his superstitious ignorant parents twelve people  asked him to Get rid of me baby and all

Overdosed with pitocin for a cow
giving birth was a torture
then blood thinners
were added to slowly
end my life
A hate crime because I a sub human born in Mexico not Greece
The poisons caused
a chest malformation of my daughter requiring surgery
later in life was mis-diagnosed
as pectus scavatum
but I knew better it was
attempted ******
a chilling secret I was so ashamed to reveal

I did escape my kids and me
we survived  the memory
of my true love's loving ways
In America saved me from certain death there I was 75 lbs
When I escaped Hell
Greece
But salads gave me
Nausea through the years
I could never recall why

Painting gets my mind
Off painful memories
resurficing examining my life understanding me and others

I have many regrets unwittingly
my loving innermost feelings
remained trapped inside
and I lost my true love
in my dead calm silence of pain
Foolish online Ink
One involuntary bad deed
In Veracruz
Two SAD songs

My shrink says I have a beautiful
Soul a relentles spirit
That I managed to do better then
Most despite hellish adversity
A childhood marred with
heartbreak a trail of
Graves tree stumps
Coffin and treassures
Spirit breath of life and death
  
My hybrid race was secret
Poverty lack of Rhogam
My father the Apocalyto
Hero killed by MEX Feds
Who stole my Land
We are indigenous
Purhepecha tribe
The enemy of the Aztecs
So me my father's little queen of the forest his STAR could
Fly high and zoar
He was the love of my life
My dad David

A few days of effexor RX can bring about amnesia to block old kidnapping memories of turture resurficing unsolicited
Effexor to stop tears
regulating serotonin disrupted
After a car accident with traumatic head injury concoussion brain swelling so much that falling asleep for three months was impossible

MD prescribed just a trial
few warp eight mind bending Effexsors serotonin reuptakers
For only fifteen days
Half of thirty seven mg
Tears stopped immediatly a calmnesss
self assured old me demeanor
re-emerged I remember the arsenic and blood thiner injections the faces of sadistic jealous women but it didn't hurt

But soon my heart began to speed up so fast I could hear it beating in my ears at lowest dose

so the higher dose was not allowed.
Side effects if used longer than six months could make the
face to twich! who needs that!

So therapy ended slowly redusing small to smallest dosages for fifteen days
treatment ended
Don't like messing with my brain

Today I enjoy simple pleasures
echos born like me in
In the atlantic mystery

family time my lifetime best
best lover best Mother
nest friend to me myself
Remembering those few
Souls
Who deared greatly
their wisdom and foresigh to bet
On my future my light myself!
my father's little
Queen of the forest tribute to
My Once Upon A Time
True love his love songs
His poems quickening me
Awaking me
He was the love
Of my life my true love JPC/RC

He showed me he loved me
But he never could "tell me"
He loved me all my fault
Thinking back not ever
any other man told me
he loved me one or two boys wanted something from me freely given or taken by force from me
I didn't want them at all
No person growing up
Ever
Told me they loved me and most showed me my life didn't matter
many of my civil rights were violated throughout my life by thugs hainas had more charm
Only my father David San chez
and later my adoptive Mother mommy dearest told me once she loved me showed me she cared.
My children tell me and show me
They love me
Sometimes they hate me too
sadly they are under the spell of deadly sterile drug user enemies who assassinate my character lie and slander me to my grown daughters and I have now become estranged until they figure all out on their own so they learn to fight woolves in sheeps clothing and understand treason
and ungratefulness towards their own mother
There was only one man I loved
The MOST on this whole wide world
His ink scripted love remained the good intermigled with evil
Forever a part of me
My Lord Shiva my first teacher
My sage my guru
My Lancelott
Me  first love my last love
my tree of life he was
The only man I ever loved
and lost
Looking back
I thank G** King Jesus
King Arthur
And few other men who
Traveled in and out my door
Only one had my lock's key
I am glad you came along
I sing this last song
In memory of all the good
The bad and very bad
The few nefarious vipers I kissed
I forgive you all forgive you me for NOT
Understanding you
For loving those fellowmen
Who didn't know how to love me back
I wave my last
Good bye
I
Will
In your light and my own
Pray for you and me

As for the love of my life
"You are like a prayer
In church to God"
"I remembet you,
as someone something
VERY DEAR and precious"
You were the Best
You touched my STAR
And my starry skies sparkle
With your light remember me
in the same light my love
Look me up with your telescope
When you watch the stars
From your sun roof
In your bedroom

Find my Aries Constelation
For there is
My home
Without
You
I've taken with me a piece
Of Veracruz
A Mothers Day surprise
at the Hilton
raised in your arms on a warm June at a  bar
Where i felt like a bride
your bride

I almost asked you then and there to throw a big party
for you and me
But the monastery's dead silence
Growing up isolated
Silenced the spontaniety
Of thought you required of me
yet again!You regressed me you
tried in so many ways for me to
tell you  "I love you I am sorry
I'll marry you!"
All over again
I adored you remember this
Always.
Look me up with your telescope I AM
in The Aries Constelation I am Aprils daisy Aries diamond a
Yelow Self Existing Star says the Tzolkin Star Seed
Galactic seed always flowering....Enter me
Yours Always.
~~~~~~~
Revised 11-29th-2018
Excerpt from my memoir
auto biography
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
therapy and resistance

how is it that therapy becomes the excess of class war or the oppression thereof?

When the struggle of the individual is made to seem self induced when it is easily and clearly directly a result of the failures and complacence afforded by the majority of the group.

When in a therapeutic environment it is important to distinguish the opportunities of resistance from the experience of trauma.

there has always been individuals who establish groups that are in a realm of desperation.

Understanding how this process has unfolded institutionally is just as valid as treating the individual.

This gives the individual the choice and resources needed to heal.

The healing could look like resistance rather than assuming aspects of class war or oppressive culture to be normal.

Otherwise therapy is nothing but the means to normalize the process of oppression.

The traumatic state needs to be able to decipher its organic existence from that of organized oppression and its institutional cooperation.

the neglect of deciphering or distinguishing these differences causes individuals to make a competition out of trauma. This minimizes certain trauma of individuals and causes the group to have less of an opportunity to resist organized oppression of the institution.

Those that are in the realm of desperation or traumatic state are given no choice but to repress in order to continue being social or a member of the group.

in excess the hierarchies of gender, race and class are reinforced to an almost superhuman level.

To the desperate or traumatic state…

what needs reinforcement is that there are humans just like us who have resisted oppression and caused the normalcy of the group to be more inclusive and aware of the processes associated with organized oppression.
Francie Lynch Nov 2014
She used her sway
Like a dangling watch
Swinging on a chain:
She stopped my eyes,
I was mesmorized,
Entranced,
In a post hypnotic haze.
If she snapped her fingers
I'd cluck,
I'd bark,
Do whatever she'd ask,
But she kept on swinging
And left me panting
In post traumatic stress.
Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome
is nothing but a living hell
doctors dumb you down with pills
hoping that you're get well

Yet when you try to sleep
you see the flashes of violence
they keep you in a state of unrest
and repeat on you like a bad lunch

Sometimes you don't feel human at all
just an automaton with scares within it's mind
death and dying become not just dreams
they become familiar bed fellows

By Christos Andreas Kourtis aka NeonSolaris
Akemi Nov 2018
Blanket city run along soaked in rain. Idiot Boy wastes his time visiting a passing crush at the other end of town. Slips between two houses and a metal sheet, communal refrigerator in the middle of the road filed with half-empty soy bottles.

Dead bell stop, mocking red blink of the operator. Father arrives, a mess of wiry muscles and hair.

“Hey. Is Coffin Cat here?”

“Who?” Father squints at Idiot Boy’s cap. Idiot Boy avoids eye contact.

“Um.”

Recessed in the blackness behind Father, a Figure says, “You looking for Coffin Cat?”

Idiot Boy nods.

The Recessed Figure turns. “I’ll go get her.”

Father returns to his parched body on the couch, content.

Indistinguishable forms move back and forth in the kitchen to the right. They stop their pacing and glance at Idiot Boy as he passes. Idiot Boy avoids eye contact and slips into the left-bound arterial vessel.

“So this is the heart chamber I’ve been living in,” Coffin Cat says as Idiot Boy enters her room. There is music gear. “It’s pretty comfy.”

“Oh, sick mic,” Idiot Boy says, pointing at the mic behind Coffin Cat’s head.

“I feel like a ghost,” Coffin Cat replies, falling on her bed.

Idiot Boy settles next to her. Animal distance. Intensely aware of his rain-soaked right shoe. “Same.”

Nothing comes out right, intersubjectivity a false God to mediate the impossible kernel of being, nobody can find nor express. Idiot Boy searches for connection. He glances around the heart chamber, at the music gear, but nothing grips. Four pears sit on a table by the window, their skins garish green in the harsh grey light.

Coffin Cat moves from the bed to the floor. She opens a virtual aquarium on her computer; fish eat pellets dropped from the sky to **** out coins to buy more fish to **** out coins to buy more fish. Capitalist investment and accumulation. Every few minutes a rocket-spewing robot teleports into the aquarium to attack the fish. Ruthless competition in the global marketplace.

“No! Why would you swim there, you ******* fish?” Coffin Cat yells as one if her fish is eaten by the nomadic war machine. “So dumb. ****. Why did it eat my fish?”

A knock at the door. The Recessed Figure from earlier enters the room. “Hey, mind if I join?” Their arms dangle like fine threads of hair.

“I like your music gear,” Idiot Boy says, pointing at nothing in particular.

“Idiot Boy also makes music,” Coffin Cat adds from the floor.

The Recessed Figure does not respond. They are enthralled by their phone, streak of dead pixels along a digital chessboard, minute reflection of their own gaunt face in the glass. After an extended period, they decide to move none of their pieces. A gaping coffee grinder rises out of the rubble at their feet. They begin filling it with tobacco from broken cigarettes.

“I’m surprised you’re still playing this,” Idiot Boy says to Coffin Cat. “I swear this is one of those games designed to ruin your life. Get addicted, stop going to work, become a hikik weaboo.”

“Already there, man,” Coffin Cat laughs. “Nah, this is my new job. I’m going to be a professional gamer.”

“Stream only PopCap games.”

Another knock at the door. Tired squander in an endless pacing of flesh. Strawman enters and nods at the Recessed Figure. “Hey bro.”

“Good to see you, man.” The Recessed Figure plugs the coffee grinder into the wall. “You got any ciggys?”

Idiot Boy points under the table and says “Ahh” with his mouth.

The Recessed Figure empties it into the coffee grinder. The device whirs into motion, creating a centrifugal blur, a mechanical and headless hypnotic repeat.

Idiot Boy and Coffin Cat look for horror movies to watch. The Recessed Figure empties the contents of the coffee grinder onto a metal tray. Strawman repacks it into a ****. White smoke fills the empty column, moves in slow motion like an oceanic rip a mile off coast, surface seething with quiet, impenetrable violence.

Idiot Boy refuses the first round. It’s never done him any good. Face turned to smoke and the wretched weight of a tongue that refuses to speak. Headless carry-on as time ticks through the clock face.

The door bursts open. Everybody turns as Manic Refusal or the Loud Person saunters in.

“I can’t believe it. I can’t ******* believe it. They’re selling me off!” the Loud Person says in exasperation. “First time back in New Zealand in five years and they do this to me!”

“What? What’s happened?” Strawman asks.

“Some rich ****** in Australia has bought me as his wife. I knew it, I knew if I came back, my parents wouldn’t let me leave again. Whole ******* thing arranged!” the Loud Person laughs bitterly, before hitting the ****.

“Oomph, that’s rough,” Coffin Cat quips from the side.

“No, you don’t even understand. This is the first time back, the first time back in five years, and I’m being sold to off some rich ****** who owns all the banks in Australia.”

“But like, who is this guy?” Strawman asks, pointing.

“And he’s been reading all my profiles. He has access to all my information. I don’t even have control over my Facebook profile. Grand Larson’s logged in as me, posting for me,” the Loud Person continues. “I met him once in Australia, clubbing, and now he’s tracked and bought me.”

“That’s creepy as ****,” Idiot Boy says.

“So he’s not a complete stranger?” Strawman asks.

“I can’t believe it. I can’t ******* believe it. First time back in five years and I’m being sold off!”

Idiot Boy decides one hit from the **** wouldn’t be so bad. He packs the cone with chop, lights and inhales. Smoke rushes through the glass channel, a swirl of white ether, more than he’d expected. He quickly passes the **** to Coffin Cat, before collapsing onto the bed, eyes closed. A suffocating sensation fills his body. He sinks into the chasm of himself, further and further into an impossible, infinite depth.

“Still working at . . . ?”

“Yeah, yeah. Management. Hospital. You?”

“Like, property. Motions.”

“Subcontracting? Intonements?”

“Yeah, yeah.”

“Mmm.”

Idiot Boy doesn’t know what’s going on. He feels sick and tries to get Coffin Cat’s attention, but cannot move his body.

“Come on. Sell me drugs, Strawman.”

“Nah. I don’t deal drugs. I don’t deal drugs.”

A strange silence stretches like an artificial dusk, a liminal duration, the hollow click of a tape set back into place in reverse. The Recessed Figure coughs and the Loud Person whirs back into motion.

“I can’t believe it. I can’t ******* believe it. They’re selling me off! First time back in New Zealand in five years and they do this to me!”

The Recessed Figure makes a noncommittal noise.

“I knew it, I knew if I came back, my parents wouldn’t let me leave again. Whole ******* thing arranged!”

Coffin Cat laughs quietly.

“No, you don’t even understand. This is the first time back, the first time back in five years, and I’m being sold off to some rich ****** who owns all the banks in Australia.”

“How about this fella? He doing okay?” Strawman asks, pointing. Everyone turns to Idiot Boy and laughs affectionately.

“Still working at . . . ?”

“Yeah, yeah. Management. Hospital. You?”

“Like, property. Motions.”

“Subcontracting? Intonements?”

“Yeah, yeah.”

“Mmm.”

“Sell me drugs, Strawman.”

“Nah. I don’t deal drugs. I don’t deal drugs.”

Idiot Boy slowly opens his eyes and stares out the window. The same grey light as before. He moves his arm further towards Coffin Cat, but is still too weak to get her attention. The same strange silence stretches. The Recessed Figure coughs and the Loud Person whirs back into motion.

“I can’t believe it. I can’t ******* believe it. . . .”

As the conversation repeats over and again, Idiot Boy begins to think he has become psychotic, or perhaps entered into a psychotic space. He thinks of computer algorithms, input-output, loops without variables, endless regurgitations of the same result. Human machines trapped in their own stupid loop. Drug-****** neuronal networks incapable of making new connections, forever traversing old ones. Short-term memory loss, every repeat a new conversation of what has already been. The same grey light painted upon four pears by the window.

He’s not sure if Coffin Cat’s laugh is getting weaker with each repeat.

Signal-response. The exterior world oversaturated with variables: roadways, rivers, forests, wildlife — an ever changing scene to respond to — the illusion of depth. Automatic response mechanisms reorient to new stimuli. The soul rises like surfactant, objectified fractal diffusion. A becoming without end.

But within the border of this interior world, the light stays grey. No input, no change; the same dead repeat, over and over, until sundown triggers a hunger response. Lined all along the street, a black box ceremony of repeating machines, trapped in their idiot cults, walls of clay and blood.

Idiot Boy finally gets Coffin Cat’s attention. She helps him through the house’s arteries to reach rain and wet stone, overcast skies. As he shakes in shock, Coffin Cat mumbles, “It’s cold.”

Idiot Boy sits silent on the ride home. Travels through himself. Tunnel through the body or Mariana Trench. Loses his footing before a traumatic void. Leaves the car and pukes.
Tatiana Cody Feb 2011
Panic
Throughout
Scary
Dreams

Patience
Tried
Summons
Danger

Personal
Turmoil
Self
Doubt

Post
Traumatic
Stress
Disorder
A true story.
Cerebral Fallacy Jan 2014
It came upon the good doctor to clutch it in his palms
An object so sharp that blood oozes over its tip
Touching and clutching it he weeps tears of excess
Excess of the desire from where emerges life

Nothingness is the very excess that flows beyond being
Beyond the infinitesimal horizons of cosmic pleasure
The devil at play beyond the confines of the mind
Language the immanent trap that infinitely failed

Moving beyond the pale meditation of holy dignity
Gods emerge from the midst of haunting madness
The excess of the gods, divine excrement turn into dust
The sweet aura of the banished god- the scavenger

The very life of the gods contained with death and play
They danced across spaces, traversed beyond scope
Their bodies decay as stars while their excess reaches within
Within every marked desert of intoxication that grasps infinite depth

Weeping in the midst of the great gulf, the gods fade as the night
They emerge as beasts and flowers amidst the deep of the sea
The fall into madness, excess, passion and excrement
Perfume is but the odour of man turning into dust

Even the glory of the gods reflected divine excrement
Every entity an extension of another, the cosmic essence
That binds and destroys life as movement unfolds beyond reason
The essence beyond the shared catastrophe that binds life to itself

The good doctor watches the blood ooze from the body
Blood being the testimony of immanent frailty which traumatizes being
His tears dilute his blood as trauma sustains life
It falls into the ground and the divine fruit is born

The essence of goodness contained within the germ of madness
Madness that tantalizes the notion which shames reason
The realm of divinity where infinite wisdom dwells
It dwells in the midst of bliss- Ananda !

The God of Bliss awakens as the stench of being enters the heavens
The creator weeps as he watches the excess of heavens multiply
The object that the good doctor possesses drives him into oblivion
Never more is the world haunted by the gods !

Bliss even the bliss that is found in the mountaintop
Where the last god lay and washed his feet with perfume
And the milk of the divine yak nourished the heavenly nymphs
Charged with ****** excess, paradise lay in the midst of hell

The good doctor returns to the womb from whence he came
Beyond the confines of trauma, desire and being
Every creature watched as he lay the world bare and nacked
Never again will the gods return to plague the world

Then lie the bodies, cold, writing in pain and pleasure, leaning on love
Bodies that desire the gods of old to sustain trauma and jouissance
Where is the good doctor now? Whence will he return my love?
And there in her eyes, the beauty of the world lay

I looked at her and in an instant her eyes transformed reality
Oceans swept the depth of the horizons, stars became angels
Time turned into eternity and the darkness ebbed into nothingness
Trauma was rent apart and life was bound by divine love

I kissed her lips and as I wept I beheld the good doctor
He lay dying in the depth of the traumatic vengeance
His organs lay in the excrement of totality
His eyes gauged out, his ears rent apart and his mouth torn asunder

His limbs were scattered and his intestines emptied
The years of his life at an end and his body dismembered
Disseminated, the stench of the lifeless corpse filled the universe
I looked at her and it was the stench of love

I looked into the heart of darkness and I wept
The sound of my anguish filled the halls of time and space
The pillars of paradise was torn asunder and rent Hades apart
Eternal sorrow that sustains our love

And then as I beheld the futility of existence I kissed her lips again
I closed my eyes and I experienced the touch of the heavens in her mouth
And in the infirmary  his body lay among the dead
His organs burned as a sacrifice to atone for existence

Existence, trauma and excrement echo the cry of divine justice
And here the body lay without its organs and we were too sorrowful was beyond measure
We then buried his cold body under the stars in the heaven
We saw the scars from where his organs were rent asunder

A corpse contains the testimony of death as he gather everything to himself
But a corpse without organs? What does it contain?
Must it not contain death and trauma itself?
And here his hollow body lay, and death the parasite

A parasite's life lies in the life of the organs within the body
When the organs cease of give life, the enemy perishes
And death lay dying in the grave he decayed
The good doctor lay in the realm of darkness forever !

The blood and his tears have now produced fruit !
It was its fragrance that brought life to darkness
In the darkness of the night my lover went into the grave
Fearing not what lay in the midst of the darkness

Wind is the master of time, she flies beyond the medium that she animates
The wind carried in her ***** the fruit of blood and tears
And then she saw that the keeper of the dead leave the confines of his realm
The wind blew beyond measure into the land of the living

And then I kissed her in the graveyard one last time
For she was too sore to live but her eyes spoke one last time
And there I saw the good doctor was not dead ! He smote his foe in the deep !!
His fruit was now beyond the grave where they lay him !

The hollow of his body is now the testimony of love and eternity !
And there I awoke from my dream and my heart skipped a beat !
My desire was water was now beyond measure and I looked into the river
In the sky I saw that love is the very excess that engulfs desire !
Cheyenne Sep 2017
Something isn't right
I can taste it on your lips
Feel the tremor through my fingers
Resting on your hips

You are scared of me
Scared what I can do
Someone else has hurt you
Now you're scared I'll hurt you too
Beginning in WWI,
The men were at war,
Fighting, killing,
Causing their own Post Traumatic Stress.
And we stayed. Our country, our families needed us.
We replaced them. The men. We replaced them
In their jobs. We did as they did.
We kept the country and the troops
On their feet.
Created weapons.
Kept businesses running,
Did the banking.
The women took charge for once.
The war and the economic trouble got us
On our feet and we did the same
For our nation and our men.
Some did not like that we were working as they had,
Walking in their shoes, but we sure did.
Alicia Strong Dec 2011
Memories shatter,
like glass;
my mind,
is my safe haven.
james m nordlund Aug 2018
As they broke their bread for Lent, TrumputiN's team, hellbent,
Contrived a way to derive from the ripping apart of 3000 Latino
Families, an unending flow of your tax dolla's to predominently
Republican manned anti-immigration agencies, it should make you
Wanna holla, they called it 'zero tolerance', just to throw
All off the scent, and muddy the term's use hence, the white
Supremacy for the Black, in ebony and ivory's working together
In perfect harmony, to do away with 'zero tolerance' in schools,
To increase the amount of crime delinquent kids get done before
They're justifiably kicked out, same old, same old, tragically.

RumputiN got donations from one private prison corp, that got
A 200 million $ contract to house the kids, the involved Fed
Agencies then discriminated against families with kids by
Targeting them for family ripping on our South Western border.
These kids were caged, continually shuttled around at early
Morning hours so they'd be noticed less, were given no way
To contact relatives, their parents almost no way to contact
Them, the 'tender age' kids, 8 months old and up, not given
Humane necessary professsional care, etc., which will dictate
Lifelong traumatic effects, and deep psychological problems.

The courts continually order deadlines by which "these families
Must be reunited", but the altright universe invaders working
For trumpler continually miss them, and project genocidal lies
Like, "hundreds of these kids are ineligible to be reunited
With their parents", most parents having been deported already,
Even though a large % were legally asking for asylum at our
Border, this is genocidal and illegal internationally, there
Are no "ineligible" to be together innocent kids and parents,
When will prumptutin's genocide of Latinos, escalation of the
Oligarchy's class war against lower-middle-class to poor, end?

The gov't criminally dictated that "if they want to see their
Kids again they have to sign away their rights and leave", etc.,
Atrocities against these poor souls and groups like the ACLU,
While doing their best to remedy the abuses against them, our
Compadres, they, while not funded by the gov't, are mocked by
RumputiN, and he projects that "they should reunite families",
Instead of the gov't agencies who ripped them apart.  At least
The judges are deligently expressing the entirety of the fault
For these atrocities lies with the **** crime family's flocks
Of felons, and they must rectify it now, when will they?!?!?
When will the prosecutions of them use the REICO Statute,
And thereby, stop being elaborate cover-ups, giving out immunity

To dozens of organized criminals, while only incarcerating
A few.  Who is dense enough to not see through the smoke, mirrors,
Song, dance of the show that must go on's politic theatre macabre
Of the global oligarchy's cover up of itself?  Who is not knowing
That Mueller, who was part of the elite of the repub conspiracy
That purposely didn't prevent attacks on 9-11-01, during king
George and his ****, cheney's reign on the American way of life,
Is part of the intelligence industrial complex's 2016 invisible
Coup during, and hacking of, the presidential election, resulting
In RumputiN's installation in the Blackhouse ('cause once you go
Black you never go back), as well as the continual cover-up?  

Who, that comey, alone, could have been responsible for non-repubs
Loss of the Presidency, and now the supremacy court, especially if
The dems don't stop a kavanaugh vote before the midterms that are
Near?  Who ..., that most of the supposed "school shootings", acts
Of terror, targeting future non-repub leaders, are engineered, timed
And executed by the crimnal repub conspiracy that must be prosecuted
Using the REICO Statute also, who ..., that ebony and ivory, the
Black and white supremacies, working together in perfect harmony,
As are all 21 flavors of our baskin + robbins of supremacies, are
Struggling to mass-****** a million Americans, liquidating the ases
And assets of the masses, and calling it legislation, like ****** did
Before his "final solution", who, that the American daymare must end?
When's Mueller going to be done with his elaborate cover-up (he's purposely not using the REICO Statute that should be, and is necessary), he's giving immunity to a dozen republican criminal conspiracy felons while only prosecuting, convicting, pleading out a few, before or after RumputiN's visible coup steals the midterms?  If you didn't vote for Hillary, you voted for RumputiN.  "...We(e),..." must protect the vote, vote early, GOTV, and protect the results more than ever, before the country gets used to being drunk on democracy's backslider's wine.  Also: All threads in the fabric of life are needed; "..we(e),...", can't allow it to be torn asunder.  Mothers are that which society builds on, their needs are all of ours; and necessary to meet.  "...Suffer the children...", from the Bible, didn't mean cause the kids suffering; when will remocrats, and even some dempublicans (dinos and DinoS), stop doing most everything asbackwards?   reality
Monique Aug 2017
I hide behind a mind engulfed with poisonous secrets I dare not to leave my mouth.
My feet are buried in shackles latched onto them while my skin drips in doubt.
My hands are stitch behind my back with threads of weakness.
My mouth expands while the truth is caged behind my teeth because it’s no one business.
I open my eyes and it flutters more than a bird in fear from a threat.
I lean my head to the side and analyze this disastrous home tormented by time but hasn’t given up yet.
I watched it light on fire.
I’ve seen it dismantled by hurricanes.
I heard the walls and wood creak from the distress.
How can a foundation be so strong after a wave of events?
We all are broken homes at some point of life even if it doesn’t make sense.
Financial crisis, heartbreak, anxiety, school, family, work, depression, racism, we all experience a wave that changes us for the better or for the worst.
Sometimes it becomes so consistent like an epidemic that one can feel curse.
Then we question, “why did I go through this? What did I do to deserve such a traumatic blow to the head?”
And we search for these answers in the same place that hugged us with so much agony and the countless stress it led.
Early nights turn to restless nights in bed because we force reality to sink in our head but it covers our nose and mouth until we faint in a pool of insecurity and beg for these feelings to dead.
Make it stop,
I’m drowning.
The sky turns to a bruised face and wakes up the roots with its tears.
I feel so connected as the drops fall to the floor because it reminds me we all break no matter how much we can bear.
I observe the rain dance on the sturdy house and admire it as the beauty glisten,
I grew a love for this home because it rebuild as much as despondence knocked on the door, it ignored and refused to listen.
It upholds its commitment to itself to never give up.
That no matter how much times it can get rough,
Know that you can survive and pretending your problems don’t exist will never be enough.

-dpk
Don't give up, it will get better. A home can be broken down but the foundation still remains so it can be rebuild. We all are a home, build yourself.
Tony Scallo Nov 2014
Growing up at a young age with ADHD can be a lot of fun. Everything just becomes that much more interesting. The sky seems so vast and every single blade of grass looks just as interesting as the one right next to it. My mind raced with questions every single second. I felt the only way to express it at times was relentlessly running around, as if every step I took gave me a satisfactory answer to each question I thought about; which was ultimately a lot of steps. It would be enough to drive most people into a state of madness. Not me though, I swore to the heavens I’d have every question answered. Because believe me, the seconds would feel like hours for every moment I didn’t know just how much wood a woodchuck could chuck.

Here’s my perspective; Thoughts in general are like the light from the stars that always shine the same brightness throughout the day. They are always there. Existing, even when you can’t see them. At least that’s how it is for normal people, you get the grace of day to nullify the shining of the light from those stars at times when it can be overbearing. You get a break. If I could describe what it’s like to have ADHD, picture your mind never turning off. It is always bright for me, and there is no dawn or day to alleviate my eyes from the galaxy of lights I see. It’s a beautiful disaster. You’re always thinking out loud to yourself about everything around you. When thinking about the concept of having a conscious and subconscious, you don’t even believe in the separation of the two. You think so much because of the energy flowing through your nerves, that there could be no way another part of your brain retains knowledge you don’t already consciously know. There’s so many questions every single second, that there needs to be some sort of way to express it. Mine would come through continuos questions and obviously, a lot of running around.

I guess I didn’t understand much about people back then, though. I was too busy exploring my mind and all the ideas that sprouted within it every second. I never thought it could be a bad thing. My father seemed to think differently at times.

The worst part about having an overactive thought process, is not being able to express it. Those thoughts have to go somewhere; and if they don’t, they build up  in a *** on a back burner until the lid finally blows off and explodes as some type of extreme emotion, from anger to sadness.  

As a kid, I have too many memories of confrontations with my father when I said something he didn’t agree with. Almost as if he thought I was overstepping my bounds as a male in his house by only talking about what was on my mind. If he didn’t like what I said, or if he didn’t agree with it, “I was an idiot.” It didn’t stop there either.

Conversations about things I’ve learned had to be defended with the words, “But dad, my teacher just taught us this today in class!”

“Well then, your teachers an idiot.” he would respond. It seemed like he knew the answer to everything. Even after I went to school and got an education that his tax dollars were paying for, it wasn’t enough to get him to agree quickly with things I said. It seemed everybody was an idiot, and as a kid, I almost thought it was normal to be one at a point. Everybody seemed to be doing it.

But even the innocence of a kid knows when something feels wrong. It didn’t take much of looking at his gritting teeth and clenched jaw to know either. I would watch the muscles in his cheeks and forehead pulsate with blood every time he squeezed his fist in stubbornness; as if his fists were his heart in that moment

I guess what hurt the most about the confrontations, was the awareness that he was not always this kind of man. I’ve seen him in different lights before. Brighter lights, where his happiness rained in a room and brought joy to everyone. Times where you’d never think the same man was consumed by a darkness that made him blind to reason. The pain came with knowing I was fighting to express myself to the same man that would make me laugh till my ribs felt weak. The person who I loved seeing happy, that much more because I saw how the shadows of the clouds he carried with him, darkened his spirit.

His alcoholism and addictions didn’t help aid his perspectives for the better either. Bottle after bottle I would watch get consumed, all the while his fuse grew shorter in those moments as his BAC grew higher. Cigarettes on the daily, pills and ***. Anything to escape the pain he harbored like a shipyard.

I started keeping my thoughts to myself more. At that age, I was innocent enough to believe I was wrong for having an opinion, or speaking my mind. I thought it was wrong to think the way I thought, so I maliciously put those thoughts on a back burner; And that’s when it started.

The silence, or I guess people would say, “the introvert,” found its way into my life. It’s such a tragedy of irony. The person who always thought a mile a minute, and still does, now barely says a word. Keeping himself locked away in his brain because there’s no key that could unlock him from the darkness of judgement. I was told I was an idiot and that I was wrong so many times that I never wanted to be those things again. If I never spoke, I never had to worry about hearing it.

For years I stayed quiet about the things that went on inside my brain, and it literally killed me. I felt like I was being robbed of my imagination, or rather I was robbing other people in this world of my imagination. Simple and plain, my thoughts weren’t being put out there. They continued to boil on my back burner, occasionally exploding every now and then into anger and depression. All of those amazing thoughts I used to have, now felt like fire burning through my veins for every pulse that kept them there to never be released.

I resented my dad, and won’t forget the day I told myself I wouldn't become him. I never would of imagined that that would be the day I put an invisible blind-fold on. Because I had swore to myself I would never act like my dad, my foggy eyes would never catch the times that I did. There was just no way I would or could be like him because he character caused me too much pain.

Conversations with other people started becoming more debate-like, I was always quick to defend my point because I didn’t want to be wrong. I talked more than I listened. If you didn’t know what I was saying, you just didn’t understand where I was coming from. I kept and thought to myself all the time. So much, that when I finally did release what was on my mind, it had to be right because I spent enough time to myself analyzing it. Other people just couldn’t understand that. They couldn’t.

Remember that boiling *** on the back burner; that occasionally explodes? Well, now it was now on the verge of imploding. I was so fixated on never being wrong, it was almost like I was never wrong. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? Yeah it did to me too. When I noticed it, that’s when I imploded.

I couldn't believe I became exactly what I told myself I would never become. All of those past thoughts and hatred imploded in my brain and trickled down the inside of my body, burning me. I burned, but not with anger, I burned with depression and more silence. It was a vicious cycle. Speaking, especially to other people, almost became taboo to me. It seemed weird and out of place because it involved more emotions. I was kind of tired of feeling at that point. I had already felt enough through all of the episodes I would have from my explosions. Not to mention, I couldn’t live with myself knowing that I was my dad spitting image when I talked to other people. Depression can really be a vicious cycle, and I remember how much it would recycle itself in my life.

I would spend hours in school, with a million thoughts to say, but never spoke out. I hated myself for it, which would get me depressed. Which would then get me depressed for knowing I was depressed; making me depressed because I was depressed I was depressed. There seemed to be no escape.

I started abusing substance, from alcohol to ****. My abuse, came from the justification that I told myself I was doing it to understand perspective. I wanted to explore the same world of addiction that my dad did. I wanted to come to understand what it’s like to live in a world of dependency and escape. Boy did that backfire on me. I went into it thinking I could just jump right back out of it; that’s not what happened. I was quickly consumed with darkness, escape and depression. Anxiety got the best of me now, because I felt trapped in this world of rumination and hopelessness.

What was depression for me? Its was being stuck in a dark room, separated from the light of happiness by a cruel lock door. A locked door that had a small viewing glass for you to see what lies on the other side of it, within your reach. It was having what seemed like an entire ring of keys to open the door with, yet they’re all the same key. Depression was refusing to stand up, to take advantage of the little bit of light that shined through the viewing glass for me. The little bit of light that would of shown me I was recycling the same key, over and over again. All because I tried to use the dark to see.

I felt that my voice was unheard and I finally got to the point where I didn’t want to live anymore. I used to wish and pray that I’d contract a horrible disease or illness cause I thought it’d be the only way for people to truly hear the words I had to say. It’s a shame that I would even think this. But what even more shameful than that, is how much more words really are cherished after someone has died, or is dying. I had a one track mind for sacrifice, and was hell bent making it happen. I smoked **** by myself; occasionally drank in my lonesome; compulsively ate more than I should; anchored myself to be a sloth in my bed, slaved away to TV and constantly stressed myself over the little things I did. Anything that would speed up the process of my downfall, I did.

I still felt empty though, my collapse wasn’t happening as instantaneous as I hoped, which gave my relentless mind more time to think about it. I did want to live, I didn’t want to have to be this sacrifice to get my point across. “It’s such a cop out," my mind would occasionally blurt out to get my attention. “So what if I’m like my dad? Shouldn’t that be more of a reason to be able to empathize with him when he gets the way he does?"

It wasn’t until the day I got the brilliant idea that maybe I should speak what’s on my mind, that I saw how powerful I could feel. I’ll tell you something though, fighting through the agita you get in the back of your throat is hard. It literally stops you from talking. You know what you want to say, and exactly how you want to express it, but you overthink it and think you’re going to mess up expressing something you know is simple. That agita is the fear in the back of your throat that reminds you of why you feel that way. I didn’t want to result to the back burner again though, so I fought through the pain no matter how bad my chest hurt.

Eventually, I stopped resenting my father. I took it upon myself to sit down and throughly write him a letter, expressing the way I felt about our relationship. About how all I wanted was to see him happy, I was very blunt about how I felt. This is a part of that letter:

"When I think about how long it took me to write this, it’s pretty sad really. And it’s not even because my writing skills we’re slacking, the sad part is what I thought I had to do in order to write this to you. Every day that I would try and write this, I would put alcohol and drugs into my body because I thought it would aid me in my creative writing. But instead, pretty much the opposite happened. I sat staring at a computer screen ruminating about my own troubling thoughts and personal anger. So I sat even longer staring at that screen thinking I needed more substance in my body to awaken the thoughts that I so longed to express. I used and abused until I just got too tired of trying to write and passed out. My point is, I made excuses to take in substances for my own personal benefit because the whole time I was really trying to run away from the problem instead of facing it. When I really sit back and analyze myself as well as you, I see a huge correlation between us. And to be honest, I think it’s a big contributing factor to my depression. Not because me and you are similar, but because we’re similar and you think you’re so different. Do you want in on something I’ve never directly told you? Growing up, I’ve always had persistent urge to make you a happier person. Ever since I noticed how depressed and upset you were, I told myself I would stop at nothing until you saw the good that life has to offer. I didn’t realize how high I set my expectations until they were ripped out from under my feet. My interventions got me nowhere but further into a rut with you, not to mention they were labeled as girlish emotions to have. It’s funny how fast you can go from being helpful to being angry, which is exactly what happened to me. I became so obsessed with trying to make you a happier person that I started becoming angrier that nothing was working. My anger turned into depression and I started smoking **** significantly more to run away from the fact that it seemed like there was nothing I could do to help you out. I started seeing all the negative aspects of life and didn’t want to go out and have fun anymore, so I started compulsively eating and religiously watching TV. Not to mention, I would spend an abnormal amount of time on my computer. I went to the doctor 2 weeks ago, and since the last time I went there which was less than a year ago, I put on 20 pounds. I feel like ****, but I lie to everyone because I don’t want them to see how much I’m suffering on the inside. You know, there was a point a few months ago where I didn’t care if I died or got extremely sick, I actually hoped for it. I looked at my life as a sacrifice for the well being of other people, as well as for my own benefit. If I had gotten really sick or diagnosed with a horrible disease, I knew people would pay more attention to me. I knew that people would listen to my opinion more because it was more “influential” on them because of the fact I was probably going to die. I kind of counted on pity to be an influencing factor on me being influential to others, which is kind of like giving up. It’s kind of strange that you hear that coming from me, huh?"

I took the burden of my father off my shoulders, and I must say we get along a lot better today. He never thought I'd be able to relate to him in the ways that I did in the letter I wrote, and he broke down in tears to me. I never chose to give up on the thoughts that went on in my mind. I still struggle with expressing how I feel at times, but it’s not stopping me from trying to fight past it. I know I can relate to him if I allow him into my life instead of shutting him out indefinitely.

I have this belief that traumatic experiences can be the gateway to self-change. Trauma happens to us all, and it can be the very foundation of a person’s character. It can be what shapes your fears, develops strengths or weaknesses to certain situations and can overall can be a burden-like thought that you carry with for the rest of your life. Trauma’s have their ranges of impact and can even go as far as sending a person over the edge to end their own life. One that has stuck with me my whole life, which most people wouldn’t guess to be, was disguised in silence. People that go through traumatic experiences don’t always have crazy superficial cuts and bruises, a lot of the scars of their traumas remain on the inside, hidden away from plain view.
This was an assignment I had to write for my creative writing class, let me know what you think!
Qweyku May 2014
Loves' tribute;
was a traumatic bloodletting,
at the feet of Earths' foundation,
passed over through resurrection,
as the author; Perfect,
penned the first song,
startling in Red;
chorused;
Sacrifice and Redemption.

A soul melody,
padlocked on repeat,
a key,
to live,
to move,
to exist;
the act of human being.

A dance of humiliating instruction,
'twas the universe's orchestra simply conducting;
a priceless,
yet eternal concerto,
forever titled...
‘Unique-Spring-Awakening’


**© Qwey.ku
emily c marshman Oct 2018
I’m not allergic to bee stings – I never have been, I probably never will be – but I am more afraid of bees than anything else. More afraid than heights, than fire, than opening up to others, than death by drowning. I have been stung more times than I will ever be able to count. My skin has since grown thicker, but I remember when it was soft, and I was small. I used up the entire allowance of pain I was given for life in less than four minutes.
Perhaps I should specify that it’s not bees that I am afraid of, but wasps.
When I was nine years old, much younger than I am now, I stepped on a yellow jacket nest. My bare foot went into the hole and came out covered in their little striped bodies. There was this buzzing noise that at the time I’d thought was normal, but I now know that it was the sound of the wasps that were in my ears. They had been trying to crawl down my ear canals. I wonder if they had mistaken my canals for their burrows, and had been trying to get back to their queen, but were disappointed to find my ear drums, instead.
My sister – the same age – covered in wasps alongside me, screamed and screamed, but I made no noise. By the time I even thought to cry, I had been stung so many times it would have been pointless to weep for my swollen, red toes. I remember being unable to feel the wasps’ venom running through my veins because I couldn’t even feel my veins. If I would have cried for anything, it would have been for fear that, being unable to feel them, I might have lost track of my tiny feet. They could have walked away without my body and I wouldn’t have known. They could have walked to school and back without me.
Of course, my feet could barely walk. After my initial disgust, I watched my sister run away from where we had been standing and I knew that I should run, too. I could still feel the wasps crawling, clamoring, on my skin, in my clothes, in my hair. I remember the feeling of these bees crawling around among the roots of my hair, making themselves well-acquainted with the tender skin of my scalp. I remember being unable to get them all out of my hair before I walked into the house.
I knew that I should run, and so, balanced precariously on my numbed feet, clambered after her.
I followed my screaming sister down to our farmhouse, past my stepmother who was also screaming, even louder than my sister. I don’t remember where my father was that day.
We ran down the dirt road that led from the barns to our house, removing our shirts as we went and stopping to strip down to our underwear on the front porch. I remember the honks from cars as they passed by. I remember not knowing why they were honking, but knowing that I was angry with them for honking, for ogling, rather than stopping to help. I remember not knowing how they would help, just knowing that I needed help, desperately.
The irony of our stings is that my sister, a year later, was cast in our school’s operetta, and ended up playing the part of a yellow jacket, a sort of elementary-school-gangster, part of a group of them, who wore – you guessed it – yellow jackets and stole other bugs’ lunch money. I would say that, if the wasps that attacked me had been human, they would definitely have been after the money I used to buy Little Debbie Oatmeal Crème Pies in the lunchroom.
If I had been stung even three years later, I would have been big enough to know that one doesn’t run around in untrimmed grass with no shoes on their feet for precisely this reason. If I had been stung three years earlier, I would have been too small, and dead. So I am grateful for even the smallest of coincidences, the tiny droplet of fate that had given me those stings on that day, at that age.


I would like to talk about pain transference. In your body, nerves often run between parts of yourself you never thought would be connected. If something hurts in your elbow, it wouldn’t shock you to find that your fingers hurt as well, but if your elbow hurt and so did your lower spine? You’d be a little confused.
This is pain transference.
It’s a form of generalized pain; you can locate the pain, it’s just not coming from any one place. You can feel the pain in more than one part of your body, though there’s no reason for anything other than your elbow to ache. This is also your body’s way of protecting you from pain. It’s not that this pain is more manageable, but that it is easier to understand. Your elbow might be more hurt than the ache lets on, but you can’t tell, because your lower back is throbbing.
Now imagine your body as a hive of wasps. Imagine each of these wasps as a nerve inside of said hive-body. Imagine the queen as this hive-body’s brain. What is your body’s goal? To protect the brain. What is a hive’s goal? To protect the queen. Each wasp is born with an instinctual dedication to the queen. They must protect this individual at all costs. Your body, on the other hand, does everything it possibly can to protect the part of you that makes you so unbearably you.
Yellow jackets are social creatures. Each wasp has its own purpose in the hive, and the three different ranks within this hierarchy are the queen, the drones, and the workers. The queen (who is the only member of the colony equipped by evolution to survive the winter; every other wasp is dispensable) lays eggs and fertilizes them using stored ***** from the spermatheca. Her only purpose is to reproduce. Occasionally the queen will leave an egg unfertilized, and this egg will develop into a male drone whose only purpose is also reproduction. The female workers are arguably the most important part of the hive. They build and defend the nest.
Only female yellow jackets are capable of stinging, and wasps will only sting if their colony is disturbed. This fact is new and interesting to me. I remember thinking that it would make so much sense if the only wasps in the colony who could sting were the females. Females have a motherly, nurturing nature about them, but they are protective and willing to make sacrifices as well. Lo and behold.
The females are the nerves. They transfer the pain from the queen to themselves (and then, if disturbed, to the third-party individual who has disturbed them).
Psychics view pain transference as the transferring of pain between bodies rather than the transferring of pain between separate parts of the same body, but it works in a very similar way. Different types of energy vibrate at different frequencies; loving energy vibrates at a higher frequency than dark energy, therefore they transfer between people at different rates. Pain is simply dark energy that holds a fatalistic power over us.
According to psychics, energy can be transferred through the mind, the body, and the spirit, but pain is mostly transferred through physical touch. To transfer pain to another human being, you must touch them in a way that is not beneficial to their own or your spiritual growth.


I would like to talk about smallness. I was nine when I was stung by these yellow jackets. I was nine and the first time I’d ever been stung was at a friend’s birthday party at maybe the age of seven, behind the knee, and it’d swelled up so large I couldn’t bend my knee for two days. I knew the dangers of disturbing wasp nests; I’d watched my friends all through elementary school getting stung on the wooden playground on the premises. I, myself, stuck to swing-sets and splinters.
I was always so careful. I never went near trees if I saw a nest in its branches. My teachers had told me that I should stay away from the part of our playground made up of tires, because the hornets liked to nest in the rubber. I was terrified of being stung again after that first time because all the mud in the world didn’t seem to make a difference. The wasp’s venom, even after drying up pile after pile of soft, wet dirt, made my limb stiff and sore. I was always so careful; it seems appropriate that the one time I’d been careless, I’d been stung enough times to make up for all the times I had avoided wasps as if my life had depended on it. Maybe it had.
I was small enough when I was nine. If I had been stung at six, or three, I would have been in a lot more trouble. I would have been in a lot more pain. At nine, my stings required calamine lotion and mud for the venom, and ice baths for the swelling. At six, they might have required a trip to the hospital. At three, they would have been much more alarming, considering I had never been stung by a bee by that age.
I was careless. It was summer and I was old enough to wear denim shorts and I had kicked off my flip flops so I could feel the grass under my feet and I was careless and I was punished for it. Now I watch my cousins and my niece play outside and I have to hold my tongue, remember that I am not responsible, that I cannot prevent their being stung, their stings, no matter how badly I want to.
I would like to talk about fate. I would like to talk about how, if I hadn’t been running barefoot, I wouldn’t have gotten stung so badly. I would like to talk about how if my father had been around to tell me not to run barefoot, at least my feet would have been safe. How, if I hadn’t been too stubborn to listen to my stepmom, too, I probably would have had shoes on. How, regardless of all of these things, I probably would have been stung no matter what.
In a world where people are stung by hornets every day – where people are stung by as many as I was, at once – I would like to say that I know now that this experience is not as unique as I had previously thought it to be. I know more people than I thought I did whose trauma involves insects smaller than their pinky finger but together cover their whole body, and venom. I know people who, when I tell them I was stung by hundreds of yellow jackets at the age of nine, shrug and say nonchalantly, “Hey, me too.”
I would like to talk about smallness, and fate. I would like to talk about not only physical smallness, but the smallness one feels when they are in pain.
Belittled might be the word I am looking for. My pain wasn’t belittled, per se, but my pain belittled me.
My pain made me feel small. My pain made me feel small when I was stripping my clothes off on my front porch, cars racing by on the state highway that ran past my house. When I was running my fingers through my hair under the faucet in my kitchen sink because my sister was older and always got first dibs on the shower. As these wasps that hadn’t suffocated under my hair stung my fingers, too, until they were as swollen as my toes. My pain made me feel small when it made me pity myself.


I would like to talk about standing up for yourself as an act of causing pain.
Honeybees, when they sting, are defending themselves and their queen, but they don’t know that when they sting, it will become lodged underneath the skin of whomever they sting and it will pull them apart and they will die.
I imagine the first time a wasp stings to be a sort of power trip. Female wasps can – and will – sting repeatedly to protect the colony. I also imagine they don’t know that their relative the honeybee dies after it stings, but it must be strange for them, nonetheless.
Have you ever seen a video of a woman protecting herself and those she loves? She’s vicious. She won’t stop until the perpetrator has retreated.
When a woman stands up for herself, though, it’s as if she’s tearing herself in half.
A woman standing up for herself is a dangerous thing, both dangerous for her and for those around her. It is an act of bravery and defiance and saving grace all in one.
A few weeks ago, I overheard someone equate being female with being terminally ill, as if we have no place to go but down. As if we are dying creatures, on our last leg of life, with no will to fight for what we want.
As if the pain of the world is being transferred into us all at once.
I would like to argue that it is the exact opposite. There is nothing more alive and breathing than femaleness.I am inseparable from my femaleness. I am inseparable from the that leaks from me when I think of all of the times I have been harmed But I am not inseparable from the pain that I have caused others. I cannot forget that.


I like to imagine sometimes what my stings would have been like if I had gotten them ten years later, as well. I am much bigger. I am much stronger. I am much more capable of handling pain than my nine-year-old counterpart.
I wish I could have been the one to have to handle that pain. I wish my nine-year-old self had known better than to let her foot fall into a yellow jacket nest. I think it’s unfair that, at such an early age, I had to deal with something so terrifying and painful and traumatic. My extremities were swollen for over a week. I couldn’t write, I could close the zipper on my backpack, I couldn’t turn the pages of a book. I couldn’t go to school, and I couldn’t read in bed, so it might be enough to say that the week I was kept out of school to elevate my legs and let the swelling go down was the most boring week of my entire life.
Sometimes I look at my ankles, swollen from blood flow, from standing too long or from sitting too long or from doing anything except elevating them, and I’m reminded of this time when my ankles were much thinner and I watched them on the end of the couch, my toes pointing toward the ceiling. I remember how terrified my mom was. I imagine that phone call must have been harrowing for her – Hi, Michelle, Em’s been hurt. No, she’s fine. Just a few bee stings is all. – and for her to see me for the first time, red and splotchy and itching myself like mad must have been even more so.
I think about my father’s reaction, how I hadn’t been around to see it, but how he must have been heartbroken at knowing he wasn’t there to protect me, to prevent the bees from attacking me. I believe, however, that there was no protecting me, that there was no preventing these wasps from defending their home against me, an infiltrator. I had stepped inside of their burrow and was instantly seen as a threat. Anything I see as a threat to myself, I instantly want to rid myself of.
This is the way of the world: we see something, we determine it to be good or bad, and we either bring it into our lives or defend ourselves from it depending upon which it turns out to be. I happened to be the ultimate evil in these wasps’ lives. They were simply protecting their queen, without whom their hive would no longer exist. I was dark energy, vibrating in a way that spoke to them as threatening. I was transferring pain to them when my foot stepped into the hole, and they were transferring it back to me when they stung me. I transferred energy into the ground as my feet thumped against it. Water transferred energy into me as it helped me rinse wasps out of my hair.
From pain to protection to pity, back to pain. From bee stings to womanhood to sadness and back again. One shouldn’t be afraid to introduce the things they’ve lost to the things they’ve loved, or the things they love to the things they’re afraid of. And I am afraid of wasps. Petrified, even. The other day, driving in my car, I rolled the window down and in, immediately, flew a yellow jacket. I watched as it she flew past me and then around the back of my head. I heard her and was immediately transported back in time. I wondered what she was doing in my car, so far from her queen. I wondered what was in my car that she possibly could have wanted. But I knew that she wasn’t there to hurt me, because I hadn’t invaded her home. I hadn’t made an attack on her queen. I knew there was no sense in panicking, so I didn’t. I didn’t panic.
I am afraid of things even though they won’t **** me, but I have watched myself face these fears. I have stumbled onto a Ferris wheel and then walked confidently off. I have left candles lit without standing to check on them after every episode of The Office I watch. I have loved people I never thought I would, and I have seen the other side.
“And such bees! Bilbo had never seen anything like them. If one was to sting me, He thought, I should swell up as big again as I am!”
      -The Hobbit, JRR Tolkien
Wandering soul May 2014
I knew the moment we touched
Things would never be the same
I knew the moment you smiled
My feelings could not be tamed
I knew the moment our lips met
That I was desperately in love
I knew the moment you came in
That it was too late to go Back to
Being friends
That it was too late to hide the feelings I had confessed
That i was too far gone
To ever return to what I was
What things were
Before you

For before you
Seems like an alternate dimension
That I had suffered and lost
Because there was no life before you
And there won't be life after
Drinking morning coffee
at night
something makes my brain
split open
and the thoughts
spit out venom
from the reptile mind
about an experience
of peculiar pain
which happened
about forty years ago
and after awhile
it closed up again
leaving its traces
in the form
of sadness
so here I am now
with my broken head
scratching its back.
erich May 2013
we are astronauts

code breaking analysts

swimming through bananafish

sleeping in the sea

crack the safe at the bottom of the ocean

unlock your deep sea devotion

let it boil bubble to the surface,
dissipate
join the air
the wind is whipping towards the horizon

some where on this sea lists a ship
warranted in unsteady sailing
by the wild waves
of the seas hidden secrets.

regret, expedition.
rest, on mission.

If the water were the forest
we'd walk steady with oaths of oak.
lumbered knowledge swirled in circles,
but the bark still lets we breathe.
Alisha Mcleod Nov 2015
Somedays my thoughts shriek so loud that
they congest the rest of my mind
other days they chant lullaby's as if nothing
traumatic has ever happened
one moment i'm up
the next im crumbling to my knees
one or the other its consistent drowning with
no one to rescue me
I'm keen on telling myself its all in my head
at times, but
doctors tell me its all me
but for gods sake do they realize what horrid
phrases the voices scream?
death would be so heavenly
I long for the passing of sides
im awaiting to go home where its all
white and peaceful
i have days where im so narcissistic; I swear
I can commence the world as if every millisecond is
a luxury of sighs and sounds
at moments my dispute comes out so rapid
all i get is crooked looks and mumbles
some days, I love him
other times I swear he's the devil in disguise
during my manic episodes you spoke soft as if I
was a fallen angle that was overflowing with life.
You had mentioned a world that disculded me was a
world you cannot exist in
You said I influenced your heart to skip beats, that I
saved you, I was your fresh air
Once he witnessed myself during a dreadful episode
you declared loving me was exhausting and space
is what you desired for
hell could i control this?
he was the one isolated concept I could ever make
my ******* mind up about
I loved him;
I love him
he said that his devotion to me was similar to
staring into a black hole but seeing the reflection of the delicate sunset
it never made sense to him
BUT HELL DID IT MAKE SENSE TO ME?
when he stranded me, i couldn't help but dissolve in tears
i was nowhere adjacent to happy
but that's all I've ever comprehended
my doctor says they've observed a change
maybe its the sleepless weeks and collection of mood stabilizers
consuming pills in hopes to not feel so ******* empty
anticipating on my next manic episode
waiting for the door to open to go home
If I have learned anything from living with BPD
it is im constantly dilapidated upon everything
one day soon I hope to recover from this disorder
that replicates a loud room without recognizing how loud it was
and all I hear is the ringing in my ears that doesn't seem to have an end
some day this will be over
some day my lover will stay
I pray to fall in love with another angel again
A poem I wrote while in the mental hospital.

— The End —