I’m stumbling along blind. There is no visible answer, so all I can do is ask “What do you expect of me? What am I to do?” There is just nothing else. I surrender.
“Suicide is selfish. It creates so much pain for those left behind.”
…yet noone speaks to the arrogant selfishness of those who choose to reproduce and create so many fucked up humans. Where’s the outcry about that brand of selfishness? I guess it’s overlooked in all the cute baby pictures and other crap. This species and all its crap…the universe will be a better place after we eradicate ourselves.
Life has become two dimensional, for lack of a better term. Its surreal and dreamlike. I definitely feel like I’m just going through the motions with no sense of purpose or direction. I recite this affirmation – ” I am guided in my every step by spirit who leads me to what I must know and do.” I’m pretty sure I believe it, maybe its because I’ve seen evidence of positive change in the past when I put my mind to creating it. But then again maybe its only me thats been responsible for it, by my actions. Regardless. Whatever. Well, its time to clock in and start the workday. Its the only thing keeping me going right now.
…is to not reproduce. Some lucky human or humans will never have to endure this crap. “Oh but think of all the joy and beauty and life and love they’re going to miss…”
Ahhh shut up.
Good morning. To anyone…
(how sad. but hey.)
It seems that approaching a plan of healing involves believing you “deserve” it. So how do you heal when you approach life from a place of subservience and subjugation, self loathing and worthlessness? Oh, I see…you just fix all that, THEN the healing begins. Ok.
This is a nothing post. I have no point here. I am dealing with borderline over the top anxiety today, and as usual, am alone, so I am talking to the world through my fucking keyboard. I’ve been on lithium and mirtazipine since April, and I think I’m having a reaction to it. I just upped the lithium at the beginning of May, and have been dealing with anxiety that is more than just coincidental. I am going to titrate off the mirtazipine gradually, and am planning to begin experimenting with broad spectrum cbd as an anxiety treatment. I’ve used full spectrum cbd and smoked cbd joints, but they both contain thc and will cause you to fail drug tests – ideally, I would like to be able to pass them so I can find driving jobs, and I have the opportunity over the next few months to try out different broad spectrum cbd products to see if they cause positive test results. The company I work for now does not drug test, which is good. I’ve had amazing results in treating anxiety symptoms with cbd over the past five months, and am only taking this pharmaceutical grade garbage because I was committed to the psych hospital end of April. I asked my prescribers opinion on cbd, and of course, being that she was on the clock, she was non-committal. What do I expect? For her to say “Yes, the stuff I’m prescribing you is toxic – you SHOULD ditch it and try something natural.”
I don’t recognize myself right now. I don’t know what has happened. Well, yes I do, my son died two years ago and I bottled up the grief. It came to remind me that I bottled it up in February of this year, and it has kicked my ass and dragged me through hell. I don’t recognize the world, everything has changed, and quite frankly, I wish I had committed suicide when I had the chance two months ago. I really do. This life, this world is all such a fucking joke. That we have to live like this, with brains spinning in circles or manic thought and irrational behavior speaks to what? It speaks to shit. I am not the person I was. I have turned into an asshole. Yet I still hold out some kind of hope that things will….improve? Chuckle. I dont know.
This is Anthony. He hangs out at the park and bangs his drums.
Screw the world, bunch of pinhead motherf*ckers running this show.
Mass shootings. Inflation. Cyber attacks, corruption, racism…fossil fuel, global warming…assault rifles, and oh yeah – fucking COVID – conflicting mask guidelines, “Karens”, Instagram, Facebook and Twitface, boo yah… Space Force, Hamas and harass and harangue and hate…bullying, beastiality, baseball…murder hornets and pick your poison from the six o’clock news horror show…
I don’t know. I don’t care. Listening to this cat was the best part of my day…yeah. Thats a wrap. Let’s call it a day.
Bang on, Anthony.
She and I work for a large grocery store chain. One of the biggest on the planet. She is easily 35 years younger than me, if not more. I would describe her as quirky and withdrawn. She mumbles, and moves slowly. She is an amazingly talented artist. I’ve seen her working on drawings and sketches in the breakroom during lunch. Im always fascinated by people who can draw, since I suck at it and would love to have the talent, and have complimented her work once or twice. Her face lit up with a smile both times. Yesterday, we were outside loading groceries into a customers vehicle, and I caught a glimpse of her right forearm when her jacket sleeve slid up. There were probably twenty or more scars, some healed, some still healing.
I was shocked. I don’t know why. I don’t understand cutting and I don’t judge her…shes as human as you and me, and it is her coping technique. I guess seeing how talented she is made me think she was stronger than she is…I couldn’t cut myself, I fear being cut, and don’t understand the psychology behind it.
I rarely work with her. Her crew was short staffed yesterday and I was asked to help. She used to annoy me. She works slowly and is difficult to understand because she speaks so quietly but for a few seconds I saw her frail, damaged humanity, and my heart broke for her. I will always go out of my way to acknowledge her from now on. In a world of suffering and apathy, she hurts.
Its been a while since I last posted. I visit the site once or twice a week lately, but don’t stay very long…unsure why. Many of you have shown concern for me…I am surprised by this, I would’ve never guessed people would do this. I don’t see myself as the type others would think about. Anyhow. Thank you for this, it makes me feel…human? Better? Alive? Please know I’m grateful, Idfk Anymore.
A lot has happened since my last post March 28th. I wrote that post as I was sitting in the emergency room, having been remanded into custody by a counselor I’d been seeing weekly for almost two months. He works for the county and is required to report patients who display suicidal behaviors, and I guess I was off the charts in terms of doing so, so he called the cops and I was escorted into the E.R. in handcuffs. I wrote that post the evening before I was forced into the psych ward for five days. I was seen daily by a psychiatrist and put on a regimen of medication. The meds have helped stabilize my mood swings, and I am still on them. I wore scrubs and no shoes for five days. Scrubs and socks. I took a shower every evening, and had to shave with a nurse watching me because razors are sharp and can be lethal. They let me have my hoodie, but only after cutting off the elastic string, because countless people choose to hang themselves each year with the strings from their hoodies. I participated in group sessions three times a day with other patients in scrubs and socks, and had three delicious meals each day. At 8 pm, we were given snacks. I usually opted for a cinnamon roll and banana bread, which I kept on the table next to my bed to have something to snack on during the night. Staff acted as waiters and dispensed coffee to any patient who requested it. Decaff only after 2 pm. I checked out a James Patterson novel and spent idle time reading about a New York cop named Michael Bennett as he pursued a mad killer. I spent time on an enclosed outdoor patio, watching the free folks come and go, oblivious to the likes of me and my fellow patients, trapped against our will in a secret, unmarked hospital. I got a nice tan, as the days were bright and sunny. I met Kate, a rather tall girl, around six feet, who checked herself in voluntarily. We sat up late one evening, watching tv and solving all the worlds problems. I wish I’d asked for her number, but its probably best that I didn’t. I felt a strong attraction to her, and she seemed interested in me…as we sat together, reveling in each others company inside a secret, unmarked hospital. I think about her often, and wonder what might have been. Kate.
I visited the site yesterday to re-read a post of exactly two years ago, the death of my pet-child, my furry son. I was surprised to see a post inquiring about me.
I don’t recognize the world or myself anymore. So much has changed in the past two years…since my boy died. My cat, Hooks. My reason for living. I haven’t processed it and am only now beginning to properly grieve. A huge part of me died with him. I don’t want to go on about him. I do that enough by myself.
But…seriously, I don’t recognize the world anymore. I can’t place it, can’t figure out the details…the air I breathe is surreal, the details are pointless. I still want to die, even though the lithium I am taking is supposed to curtail suicidal thinking. It hasn’t. Not one bit.
System, in a recent comment, you wrote: “It’s very hard to re-adjust after an attempt *that* organized. Its’ a traumatic experience similar to ego death. It’s difficult to get back into a regular routine after literally being on deaths doorstep, arguing internally whether you should knock on the door or not.” I don’t know how or why you wrote that, or why you even know that…but in the weeks since I failed at exiting, I’ve been trying to find some logic to what is going on, why the world is suddenly such a foreign place, why I am such a stranger to myself, and what you wrote resonates.
I’ve got a new job. I’m clean, haven’t smoked pot since February 1. My insomnia is clearing up nicely, I’m sleeping much better. I was forced into the psych ward for five days on March 28th, the day of my last post. On the 24th, four days prior, I ended up at a local park, sitting in my pickup truck with my loaded gun, surrounded by 6 cop cars. I sent a goodbye text to family, who called police. They found me, parked under a bridge at around 5 a.m. at the park, and called me to talk me down – my sister gave them my phone number. I was speaking with a police officer by phone for about twenty minutes when I accidentally fired my gun inside my truck – the hammer was cocked, and I was going to release it, but my thumb slipped off the hammer and it fired. The cop heard the gunshot over the phone and asked what happened. I explained the situation to him, and fifteen minutes later an armored SWAT vehicle came rolling into the park and took up position in front of me. A sharpshooter was perched on top of the vehicle with a high powered rifle aimed at me, ready to shoot me if I presented a threat to any of the officers. That’s awkward, folks. I sat and talked with the officer, his name is Kevin. We spent the next two hours on the phone, discussing life and death. All with a trained sniper zeroing in on my head or chest. All I would have had to do was lift my gun and point it at him, and he would have killed me, plain and simple. What I couldn’t manage to do, he would’ve gladly done for me.
Prior to that, I sat at home for almost fourteen hours, unable to find the courage to pull the goddamn trigger. The funny thing is this… that day I ended up at the park surrounded by cops was also my first day at my new job. I was scheduled to start at 8 a.m., but at that time, I had a sniper aiming a rifle at me. Around 10 a.m., Officer Kevin informed me that if I surrendered my gun, they’d let me leave and go home, plain and simple. I slowly opened my truck door, and laid the gun on the ground, and drove home. The entire park was closed off by cop cars, and they just backed off and let me leave. Just like that. I went home, took a quick shower, changed into clean clothes, drove to my new job, explained to the lady that hired me that I was three hours late and would understand if I didn’t have a job anymore. (Officer Kevin called me at home before I left for work, and he offered to call my work and explain that I had been involved in a situation requiring police intervention, if I thought it would help. Nice enough guy.) She just sort of chuckled, and said “It’s fine, don’t worry about it.” She didn’t ask for a single detail, and I didn’t offer any. I went to work, with no sleep, having spent the past seventeen hours contemplating killing myself, with my apartment situated so that whoever entered would find my cats and my final wishes in plain sight, and that would be that. Instead, I simply ended up being three hours late for the first day of my new job.
Four days later, I was committed to the psychiatric hospital by a counselor I’d been seeing for the previous two months. He heard about the incident at the park, and as is his job, he called police when I went in for what was going to be our final visit, and I was taken away in handcuffs. I spent a night in the hospital emergency room, then the next five nights in the psych ward. I was seen by a psychiatrist every day and put on a regimen of medications, mirtazipine and lithium. (I am still on the meds, and have to admit they’ve helped quite a bit with the panic and anxiety I’d been dealing with, but not the suicidal thinking.) I explained to my boss that I was being admitted to the hospital for a mental health observation, and handed her a letter from the psychiatrist who treated me when I was discharged five days later. They don’t seem to really care, and nothing was said of it. Even though I was in the secret, unmarked hospital for five days, I only missed two work days. I am working for a huge retail chain everyone on Earth has heard of. I’m just an insignificant blip on their radar, and so it goes. Nothing was said, I doubt the lady who hired me even remembers anything about me by now. The place I work for is a giant corporate monster. I am just one of their numbers.
And here I am. I am facing a misdemeanor charge of “unlawful discharge of a firearm” in June. I have finally set an appointment to speak with a counselor to deal with grief over my boys loss, and the ensuing depression. I am taking my medication religiously. I am straight, given up pot. I have had my work scheduled cut from 40 hours to around 25 to allow myself time to look for some type of support groups to become a part of and to better facilitate counseling appointments. When I have a better idea of how these options will work out, I’ll build up my work hours again. Right now, I need to work on working on some “issues.”
And I am a stranger in a strange world. I am out of synch with myself, with reality. I don’t have my gun anymore, the cops still have it. My lawyer advises me to let them keep it for now. I will. I’ve begun the process of grieving the loss of my boy, something I should’ve done a long time ago…it is painful, it is sad and difficult, but I recognize that I am beginning to let him go, and as I do, I am taking steps into the world for the first time without him. It is daunting. He was my life, my love, my heart and my soul. He was my reason. Just underneath my surface, there is a fast flowing river of pain, and the current is strong, yet I manage to skirt the raging waters by tip toeing along the banks. The banks are eroding, and without help, I am going to fall into the river and be swept away by the flood waters of grief. The world without him is two dimensional, flat and unappealing. But there is no going back to him, there is no returning to what was, there is only this…right now, and the next moment, and they disgust me. This life, this world, this planet, this species…disgust me.
I am still alive. I could not commit suicide when I was prepared to do so. I couldn’t do it. A simple squeeze of my right index finger, and it would’ve been over so quick…and I couldn’t do it. A trained marksman held me in his aim for almost three hours, no doubt waiting and hoping I would give him reason to add a notch to the barrel of his rifle, and yet I could not give him reason…it would have been so simple to make him feel threatened, and in half a beat of a human heart, he would have fired, and that would have been that. There is a reason I could not die, would not kill myself…I haven’t figured it out yet. There is right now…and right now…and there will be moments following all the right nows, and there will be emptiness and confusion as I move through each one, searching for meaning where there is none.
I’m a day late, but on the two year and one day anniversary of your passing, little boy, I miss you and I love you forever.
I am still alive, and feeling extremely awkward. For fifteen hours last Tuesday into early Wednesday, I sat with my g*n in hand, and couldn’t pull the trigger. I ended up at a local park with several cop cars there as they talked me down. I had to surrender my g*n to the police. Several posters commented on what I thought would be my final post, and I haven’t been able to post anything until today. Thank you for your comments….I don’t know what to say, other than I thought I was ready to die, but clearly I wasnt. Life is awkward and strange, and I’m ashamed.
I am not well. I am not well. I wonder what this night will hold…Earlier today I wrote an elaborate email to a friend that I recently spoke to about my suicidal thoughts. It is a goodbye message. In a few minutes I will write one for my siblings, and they will be saved as drafts on my phone. This is all just too much for me. If things get bad, I’ll only need to press send. I am so anxious and afraid I’m shaking. I’m nauseous. I can’t think clearly. I want peace.
I am really trying. I am really struggling. I am struggling through a grief process that should’ve happened almost two years ago, but I only delayed through heavy marijuana use. In late January of this year, it caught up with me, and I had to quit because of problems sleeping. I’ve been clean now for almost two months, and in some respects things have improved, in others not so much. All the mental health issues (depression and anxiety) that I’d been keeping at bay with weed are now front and center, demanding attention. I feel naked and defenselss against them. I am unemployed also, just a few weeks short of one year without a job. I’ve never been in this position before. I am having difficult finding the strength to right this ship. I have plans on paper for what needs to be done, checking for various jobs and beginning the application process, updating my resume and practicing interviewing skills, but so far have only managed three applications with a major grocery store chain for a job as an online order fulfillment clerk – walking around the store filling orders for people. One of these jobs looks promising, I passed their background check and have filled out paperwork for orientation, I’m just waiting for a call from them. I’m desperate to escape my apartment, where I’ve spent the past year in a drug induced haze, trying to avoid the grief caused by losing my little buddy May 1 2019. Apparently what the experts say about grief is true – you can’t avoid it, no matter what you do. Drink, do drugs, indulge in wild sex, it will be there waiting for you when you are done, and it will crush you. I am being crushed right now. Obliterated. There is a positive side, and its’ that I’m beginning to move through the process and that means that with each passing day, something resembling normalcy is waiting. It has to be. It just has to be. I did something so unbelievably different just a few days ago, I stepped so far outside my comfort zone. I was at a local park, and there is a group of rhythm junkies that meets there once a week to bang on their drums and socialize. Introvert that I am, I approached them and began making conversation. I was terrified. Before I knew it, one of them handed me a set of maracas, and I was joining in the chaos of rhythmic jungle beats filling the air. I have never played drums or any percussion instrument, but have been banging on things for my entire life. I have pretty decent rhythm, and several of these folks complimented my maraca playing, and it was just a wonderful two hours. Just beautiful. Only a few weeks earlier, I met a guy at this very same park who was sitting alone and banging on a djembe drum, and I sat and talked with him. He inspired me to buy a set of bongos, which I have been practicing on…I’ve put off this dream for too long, and am going to try to make something of the little bit of god given talent I received. I’ve made a couple of new friends with whom I text, I’ve found a grief support group to attend, I am beginning some drug counseling classes very soon, today in fact one of them begins. I am trying. I am mother f*cking trying to straighten things out. I realize it’s going to be difficult, because this pit I am in is pretty treacherous and it didn’t happen overnight. The only way out is slowly. However, I’ve been having these “trial runs” for suicide. I have “put my affairs in order”, so to speak. Ive created this folder with my meager final wishes inside. It is bright red and says “If I’m dead or injured” on the cover. It’s in plain sight inside my apartment, designed to be seen by law enforcement of my landlord, should something happen to me. There is a prepaid cremation plan, and several letters to friends and my landlord that indicate some final wishes, instructions on how to dispose of my belongings, what I’d like done with my cats. I’ve sent copies of my final wishes and my meager estate plan to my family. I don’t have much of anything to offer, I just want them to know that they don’t need to go through the hassle of paying for a funeral for their lost brother. They live out of state, and I’ve made it clear to them that I don’t want them to have to lift a finger to clean up what I leave behind. My ashes can sit in an urn that remains unclaimed forever, I don’t need or want a funeral or any kind of memorial service at all. My ego isn’t that powerful. I could care less about any of that nonsense. At this point, the only ones who will be inconvenienced are those who will have to clean up my body and bring it to the funeral home to be cremated, and my landlord, who will have to clean out my apartment. A crew of two can have the job done in no more than two days. I own very little. I call it an estate plan, but I possess an estate about like America has no financial debt. I have a few bank accounts and retirement plans, and my siblings are either beneficiaries on the retirement plans or co-owners of the bank accounts. Problem solved. No complicated wills or trusts to probate or deal with. What a bunch of nonsense we force ourselves to deal with all in the name of managing our “stuff.” What fools we are, how we chase shadows in search of contentment like puppies chasing their tails. The pain I’m dealing with is beginning to override the love for my cats. I’m beginning to see that I may not be able to continue to be here to take care of them. My issues are pretty severe right now, I am hanging by a thread, and while my goal is to see one of my cats through to her dying day, I have serious doubts about being able to do it. I know cats very well, and they are resilient animals, and she will survive without me. It will be an adjustment, but she can make it if she needs to. I don’t like to say that, but I am approaching a tipping point, and I’m not sure which way things are going to tip. I carry two notes in my wallet. One is a suicide note, of sorts, the other is a wallet sized version of my “If I’m dead or injured folder”, indicating that I have two cats at home and who to call to deal with them. I’m writing this not in the hopes that it will be read, more so just to get things out. To reinforce to myself that, while I am making a genuine attempt to return to a version of myself that is sustainable, things are also pretty dark right now, and suicide is looking more and more appealing. I’m seeing a counselor who is supposed to be helping me overcome suicidal thoughts. (I went to the ER in February for insomnia and mentioned that I had written suicide texts on my phone to my siblings but hadn’t sent them. They freaked out, so I got to go see a counselor.) I have had six sessions with him, and he is extremely concerned. He wants me to check into a psychiatric hospital, and tells me that he feels that suicide is right around the corner for me. I lied to him about the method I’m thinking of, telling him that I live near train tracks and also know of a particularly high bridge that would certainly do the job, which are both true. The reality of it is I have a loaded .357 waiting to go. It is in my nightstand, and is the only reason I own a weapon. I dare not tell him I own it. I went through this same exact counseling in 2018, and told the counselor then that I owned this gun, and they made me give it to a friend so as to keep it away from me. I did, and while I eventually got the gun back two months later, I am not willing to part with what could be the best friend I have. My little security blanket, my insurance policy against the mind that is struggling to remain intact as mental health issues slowly erode it, like a mental cancer. Mind you, I am trying. I want to live for … something. I am learning to play my set of bongos. I am going to find a job, doing something, anything…I need it desperately. I have a license to drive trucks and buses, and have done many years of medical transportation…but I need to begin slowly right now, and will take a job at a grocery store if one is offered, just to begin to rebuild some routine. I am riding my bike for exercise, even going to church, not because I believe the teachings of the ridiculous catholic faith, but as a platform to connect with something beyond myself. I am trying. Noone can take that away from me. I’ve done a lot of damage to myself since I began smoking pot again in 2017, following twelve years of absolute sobriety. Twelve long difficult years, that I threw away. It cost me a job I loved, one that could have easily seen me into my retirement years, had I not made the bad choice to begin smoking. Marijuana was a fun ride for many years, and I know it is beneficial to many, and I don’t disparage it one bit, other than to say that for me, it has been a disaster. It has gained me nothing, and cost me dearly. I wish I could continue smoking it, but I can’t, it just doesn’t serve my best interests to do so, and so that is that. I’ve never been this close to suicide. I don’t know if I can do it, but I am prepared. I began a new med routine today, trying effexor for anxiety. I had a tele-med visit with a prescriber yesterday, who asked me about suicidal thinking. I explained my situation to her and the preparations I’ve taken. She said “You’ve certainly given this a lot of thought and planned things out.” I also lied to her, claiming that my options are again, train tracks and high bridges. No mention of my loaded weapon. Shame on me. This life, this world…there is just nothing left that really appeals to me. I’m clinging to a thread of hope right now, but don’t know how things will turn out. This is just a collection of my thoughts. It does nothing to change anything. I am tired and frustrated and lacking in drive or desire to continue playing this idiotic game. Doing so will gain me nothing, and since first attempting to find relief from depression some thirty years ago, things have only become progressively worse. There is no magic cure to any of this crap. There is no permanent solution, all the pills and mantras and routines are only “management tools” to help you cope with each breath, as the cancer of mental health destroys you, minute by minute. At this point, my catholic and christian upbringing still taints my thinking about what might be awaiting me after death. I don’t fear hell, nor do I look forward to heaven, but still have doubts about some sort of reprisal for being a coward and taking the easy way out – apparently, we’re put here to suffer, and nobility is found in doing so and dying a natural death. Or so they say. Having no idea what to expect if I decide to pull the trigger, I can only take comfort in the fact that in the past ten years, I have tried to live (and been succesful in doing so) a life of worth, of doing things more for the benefit of others than just blindly chasing my own happiness and success. I’ve done work that has focused on people and their problems, and have found some perspective as a result. So, if I kill myself, and am confronted by some angry higher power, I will defend myself by saying “What did you expect me to do? I tried. I changed my way of thinking, lived less for myself, and tried…and just what did you expect me to do?” I hope that’s good enough, but don’t really care if it isn’t. If there’s some horrible punishment awaiting me after death by suicide, oh well….at least I know I gave it a good try. If that’s not good enough for whoever or whatever might be waiting to decide my eternal fate, it can go f*ck itself.
I am comforted by the stories of people who had much more to offer this world than me, who commited suicide. Dr. Sophia Yin comes to mind. Dr. Lorna Breen. Robin Williams. The list goes on. What kind of “god” dumps us into this mess and then punishes us for not finding our way through the dark shit of life? I just can’t see it. I need to believe that these religious stories are all just so much hot air, and for the most part I do. But still….don’t we all just have abolutely no idea what comes next? How can we, until we depart? I envy the dead. They know. They experienced the final reality, and have moved on, or are just silent, and gone. How I hope for the latter. Just an end to all this insanity.
Today, I went to a farm. It’s owned by a friend that I used to work with, and her wife. I went to discuss some personal issues. I’ve never really been that close with her, but she’s the type of person I felt I could open up to about having suicidal thoughts, and about my excessive drug use this past year. So I opened up, just a bit. She opened up about periods in her past, periods of extremely deep depression and suicidal thoughts. She talked about excessively drinking to deal with her pain during these times. I was surprised to hear this from her, she’s the last person I would’ve suspected of being suicidal, even if it was years ago.
I got to know her a little bit better today, and I’m glad…I thought about not going, but went anyways, and I’m glad I did. She was a Buddhist nun many years ago. She took care of horses for a police department and watched a close friend, a police officer, die after being accidentally shot in the head. She and I worked together at an animal shelter eight years ago, and she is now it’s executive director.
They have a lot of goats and sheep and horses. I got to hold a baby goat that is about three weeks old…I held it for about fifteen minutes, and it loved being held. It was so cool. I tossed hay to horses, and learned that her big goat pees on its own head to attract women goats. She gave me a dozen eggs, freshly laid – I had to wash hen filth off them when I got home. I’ve never washed hen filth off eggs. It was amazing. The ground was wet and muddy and there was animal poop everywhere. She said that if I ever need to just get away and do something, busy work to keep my mind occupied, I could come to her farm and they’d find me something to do…I’ll probably take up her up on that.
By her actions and attitude, I get the feeling that she knows I’m in a very, very dark place. She gave me permission to use her name as an emergency contact to come to my apartment to pick up my cats if something happens to me.
Someone gave a shit about me today. Today was a decent day, and I’m grateful.
A friend texts “How are you doing today?”
And so, as I prepare to reply, it is time to lie.
To me, “faith” implies optimism, I suppose. I have faith that drivers will yield right of way to me as I cross a street. I have faith the captain of an airliner will keep me safe. I’m optimistic these outcomes will be positive.
I’m sitting in church right now. Catholic church. There’s a ritual called adoration that’s taking place as I type this. The priest places an edible wafer into a shiny gold display medium, called a monstrance. He sets it on the altar, facing the parishioners, where it sits for a few hours, allowing the faithful to sit in the presence of “god.” Here’s a pic.
Pretty snazzy. If I was the creator of the universe, an undefinable mystery that has baffled human minds for thousands of years, I could hang out in here while hungry worshippers dreamt of eating me.
The wafer, in the Catholic tradition, is the actual body of Jesus, which good catholics eat at mass in order to be one with him. There are at least thirty people in church right now, adoring this wafer as they bask in the presence of the creator of all that is.
Here I sit, part of this…why?
My “faith” isn’t what it once was. For decades, I accepted what I was told, that “god ” required conformity and submission, and certain punishment awaited those who doubted and disobeyed. Optimism – the faithful believe their adoration and adherence will result in eternal reward. Cry out to “god”, and he will help you.
My concept of “god” is so different anymore. More of an agnostic, I believe there is or was an intelligence involved in the creation of all that is, and we are too stupid to understand it. So we write stories about it, about “god”, and we live within those stories in order to exclude and label those who are different from us. These stories are our exclusive little clubs, and their rituals are the bylaws that order them. And they are all just so much damn rubbish.
Faith is optimism. Reality is…what? A mix of optimism and pessimism? I don’t know.
I only see what I see anymore. War, chaos, anger, hate, division, happiness, rainbows and kittens, sadness grief and misery, acid rain and corpses, smiling children, hopeful parents, corrupt politicians and deceitful evangelists all hell bent on agendas. I see a species of hairless human apes making a fucking mess of their planet, and now slowly expanding their distinguishing characteristic of excessive garbage and detritus into space, as our collection of space junk grows by the year. We are a bunch of selfish pigs, we are a bunch of caring, kind souls, we lend one another a hand, we strike each other down in the name of skin color and various religious and secular ideologies, all while attempting to define and characterize “god” based on the limited abilities of our narrow and only slightly-above-simian minds.
I suppose that’s the best we have to offer.
I’ve had to redefine my “god.” Whatever it is, if it even exists, if it’s responsible for “all that is”, it’s clearly ok with sitting by as we run around like imbeciles creating our own misery through our petty prejudices and hatred. It could give a rats ass about your suffering, it could care less whether you prosper and enjoy life, or sleep under a bridge wearing filthy clothes covered in lice. It watches as presidents and politicians cheat and steal, and it watches as charity workers bathe the sick and dying in third world countries. It watches as generals direct armies to maim, kill and destroy. It watches as doctors open skulls and repair intricate human brains, restoring function. It watches as we do the only thing we know to do in our abundance of short sightedness, and it doesn’t involve itself – “god”, whatever it is, sits and allows universal life to play out according to the rules that govern it, and those rules mean suffering and prosperity to varying degrees for all of us.
To have faith that “god” is walking with you is…optimistic. For many, it is to key to survival. I don’t mean to disparage the faithful. For all I know, what I think and believe is absolutely incorrect. Who am I to define “god?” I’m just one of all of us, with my opinion…but the “god” I conceive of remains the fuzziest enigma ever presented to me. I have no idea what or who or how it might be, if it even is. The stories we create are nothing more than cultural conjecture. They don’t explain anything real – they just mean to convey hope, create structure, allow for judgment and control through fear of eternal punishment, while fueling exclusion, hate, and division. And they’re a good front for Saturday bingo and other forms of fellowship.
Yeah. Here I sit, in St. Vincent’s church, looking at a wafer in a monstrance that is believed to be the flesh of the creator of the universe. “God’s” body, conveniently packaged for my dining pleasure. I come here to feel a connection to something outside myself, in the hopes that I will find meaning. The teachings of catholicism, the dogmas and concepts are meaningless to me. Mere words written by generations of curious cousins of chimpanzees, hell bent on determining origin, reason, destination. I’m no different than the faithful who are gazing at this edible wafer and imploring it to deliver them from all manner of suffering and bless all their loved ones. I’m no different at all. I’m hopeful that my misery has meaning. I’m hopeful that I can find peace of some kind. I’m scared, lonely, angry, sad, depressed…and I’d sure like to believe that somewhere, in a distant place far above the limits of the universe some omnipotent thing-a-ma-jigger had my back. That “god”, the myth, the legend, gave a shit about me.
But all I see as I look around this planet leads me to belive I’m just being overly optimistic – if there’s a “plan”, there is no denying it is meant to involve suffering. Lots and lots of it. Yup. We’re here to have good days and bad days, to smile and cry. Our pain is our own, we must bear it alone, sure there’s relief in fellowhip, but there’s death in life too. It’s just part of the plan, like it or not. I have questions, we all do…and I see no clear answers, dreamers. None.
Now, go in peace to love and serve your “god.” Refreshments will be served in the parish hall, and don’t forget bingo on Saturday at 4 pm. A-freakin’-men.
There is no going back to that other person, that other place, this thing, this stranger, she is all you are now.
Just a line from a movie, but it is so true.
There is no healing in regression, because regression is not an option. There is only forward motion and it’s pain, or there is stagnation, and its pain. Either way. The universe holds its arms wide open to you, and says “Welcome”, as it smears shit across your face and destroys your heart.
For me, the worst pain is the pain inflicted by a taunting promise that says change is possible, yet inside, I’m too crippled by fear and rage and hate to make change. So I stand in this mess, in its never ending same-ness, smelling it’s stink and pondering death. You coward. You want it, but you’re too afraid even to end your useless existence. You stupid coward.
Well. Glad I got that out. I feel much better.
I envy some of the people who post here, in that they can spill out their hearts so easily…I am not that way, I am very reserved and am only capable of writing effectively when things are at their worst, when I am overcome with despair, sadness or great depression. I wonder why that is. Thoughts merge into words when I’m emotional, sad. I write here, and my words are carefully edited, to sound as coherent as possible. I can’t speak the way I write, for the most part. I tend to ramble and repeat things I already said, going off on tangents, censoring myself because I feel the need to hide who I am, what I am.
I was fortunate enough, many years ago, to visit Californias central coast region and see the giant redwood trees. Already, as I type these words, the emotions are returning. Awe. Undeniable, raw, natural awe. I miss that experience, the smells of a forest of such rich lush life, ferns and vines, thick undergrowth blossoming under a shaded canopy of trees that have been standing for three, four, five, six, seven hundred years, maybe longer, towering two and three hundred feet into the air. The sun is blocked out in some areas, if you’ve experienced a total eclipse of the sun, you know that feeling of shade that is not quite right…it’s still shade, but its source is just so…bizarre. Julia Hill, in a lecture on her claim to fame, the Luna tree sit, describes the scene as a “cathedral.” Yes. That’s an apt word. A cathedral of natures making. To stand in this cathedral, amongst these giants, is to gain new perspective on time. That a tree so magnificent and strong will simply stand where it grew, until the day it is felled, without moving or complaining…it is so fucking awesome. I want to go back, free from the constraints of all this crap, of money and jobs, and obligation, and simply bask in the splendor of creation that man couldn’t in his wildest dreams create. Our buildings, our infrastructure, our aircraft are all wonderful things, but these trees… words don’t do them justice. Words simply don’t suffice. It should be a rite of passage, an experience everyone enjoys before they die. If you’ve seen Soylent Green, there’s a scene when the old man has made his peace and reports for euthanasia. He is washed and dressed, and lies in a bed before a huge screen. A movie begins playing, depicting the Earth of his younger days, flourishing with life, and animals, running water and natural beauty, and as he watches, reliving the memories of the time before man turned earth into the dying planet it now is, his friend Thorn speaks to him through the intercom…Thorn is probably thirty or forty years younger than the old man, and he simply says “…I had no idea” as he gazes at the screen the old man is watching. “I had no idea.” Thorn grew up in a world dying as the result of overpopulation, and could only stand in awe at the images in front of him. Deer drinking from rivers, rain falling from billowing white clouds, green grass, trees…life. “I had no idea.”
I am not sleeping yet again tonight. I crave sleep, and it eludes me. I am frustrated.
So I dream of the past, when the trees surrounded me, and oh the life, verdant, rich, lush surrounded the trees that surrounded me. This is tonights memory. Watching as the rolling hills of California slowly transform into this magnificent range of overpowering trees that have stood the test of time, in a region that is protected from our saws and our industry. There’s a section of highway called the Avenue of The Giants.
Just words. Four simple words, when combined with the sight of these magnificent trees, have the power to change you, to shake you, to take away your breath. Giants. No need to fear these giants, they mean you no harm, they are ours, they are yours, they simply are.
She sat in the tree for two years and several months, and she thought. She did not touch the earth once during this time, and she learned and she grew. A self described environmentalist whacko, she did what noone else has done, and she was “Butterfly”, and to this day, if I were lucky enough to cross paths with her, I’d be tempted to kiss her feet. She’s no longer Butterfly, having moved on, but her time in Luna will always be part of her, her story will always be part of me, because I admire what she did, why she did it. A world of wires and phones and technology, of meaningless chatter and useless gimmicks, and she defied it all to save one tree, one single tree, and it still stands. I can’t say I love her, there is a part of me, the boy that never grew up, that has a crush on her, and that is far from love. Far from it. As dysfunctional as I am, incapable of loving myself to dream that I could love anyone else, yet if I saw her in danger I’d act, because she sat in a tree. Her words in all their mystery touch part of me that I cannot locate, they send me to the cathedral she described, and therein is peace, and perfection, and splendor. They mocked her, they ridiculed her and tested her, and like the tree she sat in she weathered the storm, took all their shit and set it aside, all for what will one day be a lost cause as the planet will have its way and Luna will die and fall, but here’s the point – it hasn’t fallen yet, and it would’ve, had it not been for her.
They are our decks, and our furniture, we have carved out their bases to let cars drive through them. What trivial idiots we are, in such desperate need of objects and entertainment so as to overlook these gifts. The price of money is death. The cost of cash is chaos. The object of progress is destruction, entropy on an industrial scale. All things die and fade away, but somehow, humanity seems to have the corner of the market when it comes to rushing things. We make little sense. We make little progress, bits and pieces, and for less than sensible reasons. We’ve lost harmony, no, we’ve lost sight of harmony.
I’m rambling. It’s late, and tonight will be another night of no sleep.
I have the means to walk away from my current life, buy a good used rv, and go to these trees and live among them for an extended period of time, taking in the majesty and grandeur of specimens no human hand could mimic, wouldn’t dare to try for fear of being made to look foolish. We could try, and we would fail. These trees…they are unique, they are genuine, they are freaks of nature, they are beautiful. They are a reminder of what we are not. They are stalwart mammoths, unmoving but to sway in the wind, to bend in the howling winter storms, to glide in summers warm breezes, standing watch over the ground far,far below. I have the means. And yet I won’t. That is sad. Truly sad, that I am too attached and too afraid to make the change, to walk away from the useless detritus of this pathetic civilization and go to California, with an achin’ in my heart…
One day. One day. One day.
Today is March 2. Today, my little boy would have turned 9. I miss the little furry fucker. I miss him so much.
These are tonights late night thoughts, tonights regrets, tonights dreams, my howls at an unreachable moon. Why, I scream, why? And, as with all other moons, and all other screams and howls, there is no fucking answer, only the trees, and the winds and the storms, and of course, the change. The incessant pestering change that will take all of us, from Luna to the smallest grain of sand, the inescapable change, the entropy that ultimately will claim the universe. Or not.
This is beauty. We’ve walked right past it in our quest for…objects, for entertainment, for simple fun and pleasure, and it’s not our fault, it’s all we can do. Its all we know. How sad.
Wherever you are, little buddy, know I will always, ALWAYS love you. You changed me. On my way to my own demise, you stepped in and you changed me. See ya.
One month clean. After almost two years of heavy use, driving me deeper and deeper down a hole of insanity and clouded thinking, cyclones of emotion and extremely bad judgment calls, today is one freaking month clean. The world is a boring, banal, and predictable place when you’re sober, and for right now, that’ll work.
And eight hours of solid sleep last night helped. God I needed that.