I drank some wine tonight…
specifically to alter my mood.
I was feeling anxious
and exhausted from enduring
the difficult feelings.
I wanted them to change.
I want to escape these feelings.
I wonder why I had children.
Sometimes I wish I didn’t.
I wish I could run away.
My children are the only reason
I’m still here in this part of the world.
I’ve thought about leaving this planet
many times this past year.
I’ve had more thoughts like these
since the holiday season has arrived.
The anger is back and so is the depression.
I wonder how long I can make it
feeling like this.
I don’t want to have to take pills.
I want to lick this on my own.
But it is licking me.
I’m angry at life.
Then I feel guilty for feeling angry.
Then I’m ashamed that I haven’t
fixed my life by now.
I keep working to improve myself,
but the deeper I dig
the more faults I discover.
Why did I start digging in the first place?
I could go on forever,
but you probably wouldn’t read this,
and your reading this is one of the only reasons
I’m writing this.
I thought this was for me,
but really it’s because I long to be seen
and heard and understood.
Thanks for listening.
I’ve been searching for something out there,
sometimes catching a whiff of its fragrance
in the wind.
It would render me melancholy
to sense it but experience it
so far away,
when my heart longed for this thing
I could not know.
Sometimes it was a rush of cold air
into my nostrils
as I stepped from my grandmother’s house
into the winter night
and I’d search for the star
in the dark blue sky
that told me the light
was returning soon.
For the longest time
I feared the magic and suppressed it
much to my heart’s dismay.
The whole world seemed cold and dark
and I was trapped in a prison
of my own making.
Spirit came to rattle me out of my cage
and throw me into the light of day.
Such a fool I was,
resisting a project of God’s hand.
How can I stop the ocean from surging?
How can I move the sun in the sky?
How can I make the moon glow brightly?
How can I give the gift of new life?
I only experience these things
because consciousness pours through me.
Who made this consciousness,
the perceiver and the perceived?
My body speaks clearly.
Its language is believed.
I trust the longing in me now.
The magic in me swells alive within.
I open the door to the cold and dark everywhere
and catch its beloved fragrance on the wind.
It’s something about the cold wind
and the way the sun keeps hiding
behind the big, thick clouds
rolling through the sky today.
I’m feeling estranged from everything,
as if I didn’t get the memo
for some meeting
and everyone is there without me
while I’m wondering
where everyone else is
and why I’m not there with them.
Like the opportunity to connect
and I need to resign myself
to this feeling, forever.
like I know there’s more out there,
but I don’t know where I’m supposed to go
and what I’m supposed to do.
Feeling exhausted to my very bones,
knowing I have so much to do,
wondering how I’ll summon the energy
for the rest of this day
when my kids get home.
Wanting answers. Wanting comfort.
and knowing I’ll need to give it to myself,
because I am the only one who can
and I’m the only one who does.
It all comes back to this:
When I’m feeling melancholy, estranged,
lonely, uneasy, tired and full of longing,
I am the one I need most.
No one else is here to save me.
It’s up to me now
to be the one I’ve been waiting for.
A part of me thinks
he’ll come back
Would I even want
to get back together
with a man
who dissolved our marriage,
blamed me for it,
had an affair,
and lied about it?
And what would that say about me
if I took him back after all that?
What does it say about my self-esteem,
my sense of self-worth, my pride?
But still I fantasize about our family
being together again,
the four of us living
under the same roof again;
I fantasize about
being welcomed by his family again.
Nothing makes sense inside.
Nothing makes sense.
I ordered more self-help books today…
they’ve been my drug of choice
I keep believing
someone else has found
the clear path to my healing.
for the recipe
the magical incantation
the 40 day workbook
the online program
the teacher, speaker, or coach
to help me feel ok
about my life, my self.
The hungry ghost looms large;
its insatiable appetite aches loudly.
I am overcome by everything.
I start to believe
that some mistake was made
when I came to Earth,
I wasn’t meant for this world.
I pick up another self-help book.
Oh, someone else feels this way too?
I find some hope, some solace,
one moment of respite.
There are worse addictions.
I come back to this place again and again
in my dreams, the dreams I hold in my heart.
Green grass mown by munching goats and sheep
their bells sounding a right racket as they amble along
tracks they’ve worn into the mountain meadow.
I look up and see a crystalline blue sky.
I look out from where I’m sitting and see
more mountains than I can count and the city
where I left my heart nestled in the valley below.
I take off my shoes and dip my toes into the ice cold water
of the stream that has gathered momentum
from its origins in the valley behind me.
A bit of emmental cheese, a bit of dark chocolate,
a hunk of baguette, a sip of water
and now my hands are drumming this drum
I lugged with me from the valley below.
The breath of summer and the scent of wildflowers
caress my soul as the wind whispers through the conifers.
I have endured such heartbreak.
At the outset of this blog project nearly one year ago, I found myself wanting to explore the idea of creative recovery, how to pierce through the noise of my emotional system and delve into the creative, inspired self that can be expressed outwardly as writer, artist, crafter, teacher, mother, dancer…endless expressions of this indwelling creative spirit embodied as Lorien.
As I began to move through the Twelve Steps with the idea of my creative recovery in mind, I explored the idea of addiction and experiences surrounding this theme in my life; how I perceived my family’s relationship with alcohol, with anger, with hoarding, to name a few. I started to see how alcohol use and abuse has been normalized within my family, and how choosing not to drink made me part of a slim minority. I am glad to have found clarity though; I didn’t need their approval or support to make this choice–it just seemed like the most loving thing I could do for my body, mind, and the people around me to choose to be substance free.
Having been completely alcohol free for almost a year and a half, I find myself even more sensitive to the use of alcohol in social settings. I don’t miss it, so I’m not worried about a relapse or anything; I never considered myself an alcoholic although I have displayed some unhealthy behaviors during my adult years.
The fact of my being completely sober threw into sharp relief the behaviors of my family members who were drinking, and I found myself wishing for authentic connection with them in the absence of alcohol use. But how to meet them where they are? How to be loving, regardless?
Is it unrealistic of me to hope for my family members to choose sobriety? Is it futile? I want to know them, to be present to them, to listen, but it’s challenging when they are becoming more loud and aggressive with each sip.
Anybody out there have thoughts on being the only sober one in a group of people who are under the influence?
Today my grandmother would’ve celebrated her ninety-third birthday
She took her life in the month of June of my twelfth year…
and now, twenty-five years later,
I wish I could’ve related to her as an adult,
asked her to tell me stories of life
growing up in the 20’s and 30’s
I have never judged her for her decision
because, like all of us,
I too have experienced pain and suffering,
and can understand wanting to escape such misery
But I miss her still
and wish to hear her voice,
Being an adult now,
and knowing a little more of the way of sorrow,
I would like to put my hand on her shoulder
You are not alone.
I wish I could know
the woman she would’ve been
if we could sing “Happy Birthday” to her, today.
It’s fitting that her birthday falls so near to Halloween,
a time of honoring ancestors and seeking their wisdom
as the veil between the two worlds wears thin.
Wherever you are Gram,
Know that I love you,
and honor the woman you were,
even as I long to know the woman you would’ve been.
Whatever of your being that remains, dear soul,
I hope you know the joy of the dance of existence.