9

My heart still drops straight to my shoes sometimes. I don’t know that I’ll ever really get used to this process. The repetition of loss. Lather, rinse, repeat. Maybe a part of me is numbed a bit between you, Jess and Grams. Yet I know there’s more big ones to come, that will gut me all over again. That the people left to help me stitch back the pieces will be less and less because that is the very nature of loss.

I don’t want to be our Mark. I don’t want to be the witness.

Course I never thought I’d outlive either of you and yet here we are.

There is a matter of luck in all this. Luck that out of all the collections of atoms that could meet and become friends on this hunk of rock hurtling through space, mine got to exist by yours for a while. Luck that Marty remembered my phone number after our years apart. Luck that Amy and I decided to go to that show. Luck that I went to Denny’s that day. Luck that any of us every got to exist at all. You’re a gift. You all are. To me, to each other. To our little circles that cross in just the right little venn diagram that is life.

In my head, I hope the end is like Supernatural. Everyone gets their own version of the afterlife. I hope you got your ice cream cone, that you’re working on your parents convertible at a country home in the hills and you know why.

The ebbs and flows of try are for you. All of you. I have a harder time being brave if it’s just for me. Despite all the work it’s still hard to see the worth in that.

I just want to go see a show again and feel the way we did back then. Stupid, young, free, a little bit dumb about so many things and so smart about so many more.

My heart misses you, my head even more. Sometimes I wonder what the alternate universe of us could be. Where we’d fit in everyone’s lives now.

Could we love as hard as we do if we hadn’t had to lose you? I don’t know, but as much as I try not to take that for granted it is what humans do best after all.

Don’t know what you’ve got til it’s gone. These are the good old days. Wish somebody would have told me then that ours were too.

Go see Jess and Gram for me. Have her make you the brocolli soup and some potato pancakes. Trust me, they’re amazing.

Miss you, A2. Always.

Lift the Weight

I’m so out of practice at this we’ll see where this goes, where it flows, where the river leads me. Great Loves playlist let’s do this.

My thoughts have been Aaron and Jess heavy as of late. I want a peek into the past, a moment in their presence. To dance with the devil, make it through it hell and see who survives this time.

Sometimes I wish I could just record exactly what my brain says, but then again, that’s a can of worms no one needs access to. That’s a fucked thought, about people who use assistive tech to talk, if that gets wired straight into your brain imagine the slips that you couldn’t stop from loosing out to the world.

Sometimes I wish it was me. Most of the time I wish it was me. The world would be better if it were them here and not me. What am I really doing with the shell of a human that is still here that makes that trade worth it? Them or me? How are we different, I did and they didn’t and it doesn’t feel right.

Not always that dark, it really isn’t but some days. Some days. Wonder why we’d bother with all this when it never lasts but yet here we are. I can see it now. Do you remember we were sitting there by Vandercook Lake, smoking and telling tales into the night? Dreaming dreams we’d neither ever make real. What could you be with a different roll of the die? Who would you be if one of us had just put out the branch instead of assuming you’d be fine?

Is that what I really worry about with me? That everyone thinks I’ll be fine because I’ve always survived everything else? Adjusting to this very real thing that might kill me is fucking with that so hard. I’ve never been afraid of my own mortality but I am pissed at the idea that I don’t get to decide how I go out. When you spend most of your teen years dreaming of the day after someone finds you gone it’s hard to take that power from yourself.

Yeah, yeah I know that’s not normal but when have I ever been good at that shit? Where’s the fun in that?

That’s why I can’t be mad at either of you, you went on your own terms. Well probably, we’ll never really know that will we? I feel nothing sometimes, certainly not brave, not sane. Not always. Random acts of hopelessness. Wish you could stay here but I think you’re already gone. I want the veil to be thinner these days but most of the time I know the energy you held is not hanging around for me. No matter how much I’d like it to. I’m not the great love in that story, I’m not sure I am in anyone’s despite all the love I do have. I know it’s not a void that I once felt it was but it’s not the same as what I feel I sometimes pour out to the ether either.

Where can the love go when the people you need to give it to are gone? You gotta help me out. Cash out and get the hell out of town.

It’s like I’m stuck, like I’m running from me all the time. I know I let things have all the power. I’ll get there, I’ll get out, but then what? How long before the same old cycles repeat and I just find myself in the exact same place again?

Human beings can’t have been meant to live like this. These small insignificant things who are the world to the people they touch. Such a weird thing. My world grows smaller the older we get, only bits of people know me to the depth that make me more than a shallow little puddle of a person. How I wish I could see me all the time they way they do. I’m working on it, always but undoing the damage is work and some days I just don’t have the energy to fight myself.

I’m hooked on it I need a fix, I can’t take it
Just one more hit, I promise I can deal with it
I’ll handle it, quit it, just one more time, then that’s it

That song used to be Brian, then Jess, today it’s Aaron. thinking of your last moments and what drove them. So many questions unanswered. Same for you as Jess. I’m not mad at you for leaving, but I really wish you’d stayed.

Funny I can say that about everyone but myself with full certainty.

We were laughin’ until we were breathless
Never felt anything so reckless
We were all lit up and restless
And coming alive and we were

Up all night and we were feelin’ so good
Yeah, we got a little higher than we probably should
We were in a hotel singin’ in the hallway lights
We were strikin’ the matches right down to the ashes
Settin’ the world on fire

Trips to nowhere, no plan, just go. See what comes of it. That was what you brought me and I miss it so desperately sometimes. How stuck I feel in the same day on repeat without you to come shake me out of it, to bring me some recklessness for a little while. I miss you so much and I don’t even know if you thought of me as a friend by the end. Maybe I was an enemy to your heart by then because I threw up a white flag and flimsy rope instead of a solid ladder.

Yet I wonder if we really knew each other at all. Do any of us now? Are we just comfort food to each other. Familiar curves of a road traveled a million times over. Grooves warn deep in a record tried and true. Sometimes I don’t think you know me at all. One too many times to remember I heard your voice speak of intellectual inspiration. I hope that you make the right choices. I feel you in my solitude. Am I wasting my time?

Half the fun in my writing now reminds me of LiveJournal style entries I used to do. Mix my own poetry in between song lyrics and movie quotes. If that ain’t the most ‘us’ thing ever babes I don’t know what is.

That’s enough for now, back to the music, let it all carry the things I can’t always put words to.

Zero Point

I’m thinking about every friend I’ve had that had a hard pregnancy. So many of you, my own mother included. I’m thinking of all the stories I’ve shared over the years trying to make you understand that what you wanted to destroy would do so much harm to so many. You didn’t care then, you won’t care now. You write all loss and pain off so easily with your god’s will. Must be easy to live in a world you can push responsibility for suffering and pain off onto another over taking any yourself.


I’m tired of trying to create empathy where there is none, trying to create it for me as a person, a woman, a bi/pan person, co-parent of a non-binary gem of a human. I couldn’t make you care about my life, our lives enough to vote differently and what does that mean? What I came to realize is that doesn’t say anything terrible about me, but it sure as shit does all of you. You are no friend, family or loved one of us if you vote to dismantle our lives. You do not love us, do not claim to. You are not my protectors, many of you that should have been never were to start.


I have no will left to try to change you, it’s been burned over and over. You will tell me that you love me while condemning me to a hell I don’t believe in. That I am a good whatever I am to you while your faith dehumanizes me. I no longer care to live within the confines of your hypocrisy. We are loved and we are good, without you. Always were. Always will be.


I see you in ways you probably haven’t even considered, in lights from brightest white to deepest midnight. Given you the grace to learn, to question, to discuss. No more. Fight for us or fuck off.

…sigh

I find it aggravating, amusing and ultimately heartbreaking that if I can’t remember how old you were when you died both your obituaries are just a google search away.

Fuck that’s annoying…your entire lives boiled down to two paragraphs that don’t hold a candle to who either of you fully were.

Is that all we are in the end? A couple paragraphs of who died before us and who’s left to carry the torch?

8 of Swords

Eight of Swords Tarot Card Meanings tarot card meaning

UPRIGHT: Negative thoughts, self-imposed restriction, imprisonment, victim mentality

REVERSED: Self-limiting beliefs, inner critic, releasing negative thoughts, open to new perspectives

Still just out here trying to find meaning where there may be none at all and missing what could have been.

August Injest

Books

  • The Hilarious World of Depression – John Moe
  • The Unraveling of Cassidy Jones – Elissa R. Sloan
  • Survive the Night – Riley Sager

Games

  • Cozy Grove (finished)
  • Fall Guys (cont’d)
  • Neo Cab (finished)
  • Mass Effect (started)

July Standby

Books

  • How Y’all Doing? – Leslie Jordan
  • The Radium Girls – Kate Moore
  • Ariadne – Jennifer Saint

Games

  • Cozy Grove (finished)
  • Fall Guys (cont’d)

June Jams

Books

  • Fire Keeper’s Daughter – Angeline Boulley
  • Billie Eilish – Billie Eilish
  • Upright Women Wanted – Sarah Gailey
  • Girls to the Front – Sara Marcus

Games

  • Cozy Grove (cont’d)
  • FF7 Remake Intergrade – Intermission (started)
  • Tangle Tower (finished)
  • Neo Cab (started)

40

What would you be like at 40?

Knowing how all of us have grown, mostly I just think you’d be a solidified version of exactly who you always were.

Let’s be real, no one really walks away from our neurosis around here. We own them more, know how to work them more, but yet, they remain. Just me? Maybe just me.

A little part of me wonders if another year of vanity would have slipped in there somewhere between 35 and now. Hard to live with the fact that you never even saw 35.

So close, and yet so far.

Year 6

Not even 5:30am yet and here we are. Josh is snoring, Jinx is laying next to me flicking his tail as he dreams.

Me, I’m just thinking about what that day was like before I knew our entire world was different.

A phrase has kept running through my mind this week,

“tears write letters to the stars”

The last bit pulls from the tag I created here for my letters to Jess, the variation on a theme for letters to A2 that I started for you.

I guess that phrase about covers it now. There’s not always tears but there are things in my daily actions that say hi to you, that I’m still here, that you’re still thought of.

You are loved. ARE. Never WERE. Always ARE.

I hope that’s enough.

Midnight

I’m going to put this here because I don’t know what else to do with it at the moment.

She’s really loud today. She’s angry, and mean, and biting. She wants to lash out that nothing matters and it’s all pointless so why bother making plans or trying to make connections anymore?

What’s the fucking point? All the lines repeating over and over. How I won’t be missed, how people move on because you’ve already seen it, how much easier it could be. Maybe you could hug your friends again and then just not exist anymore.

These days are hard and it’s getting harder to shut her down, to find the light.

I know I should reach out, but I won’t. I don’t. No one needs this person. No one needs THIS me. This is not the me that has any use.

The thing is even the me that might have some use won’t reach either. For the same reasons. I don’t feel needed/wanted/cared about enough for anyone to seek me and my continual not reaching out and not making connections only exacerbates that and I fall into the same thought cycle over and over.

I should probably try therapy again, at least try something, anything. I don’t know if it really helped before or if I deluded myself into thinking that.

Maybe that’s all anything is anymore, delusions to distract from the shitfest that is reality.

Does not help at all that finding the light in the world at large grows a more difficult task with every passing day.

I’ve always had a distaste for humanity at large, it’s only getting worse so it’s quite simple to turn the knife on myself.

I miss my friends. Not just the dead ones.

In the key of me

I’m overwhelmed when I think about how much music has been made and will be made in the future.

This becomes especially true when I think about how much music has affected me throughout various time-frames in my life and how certain songs get embedded with people.

I told a friend via email this morning that I think I want to start a list of the albums that really fit my life at one point or another. Mostly so I don’t forget them.

This album right here is one I haven’t given a listen in probably a decade+ until I saw a beautiful boxed vinyl set of it. I owned this album twice I loved it so much. First on cassette and then on CD.

I dig finding new music to feel connected to, but there is something at home and comfortable in revisiting the stuff that I obsessively listened to long, long ago.

Another Long December

“the smell of hospitals in winter” is a lyric I wish I didn’t feel so akin to. I can feel that one in my bones.

I keep saying to myself ‘you need to write again’. ‘You need an outlet or you’re going to break’. Yet, the words falter every time I try. There’s such a sludge of things blocking my ability to articulate. There’s also the knowledge that I’ve gained over time that words have power and if I don’t wield them carefully they will betray me.

What I feel in a moment of passion, be that anger or joy, defies the reality behind those feelings. Haven’t been very astute at expressing either of those things in years. Everything has a haze and it seems to build the more I build a wall around myself. I’ve lost track of who I’ve built this wall to protect anymore. I thought it was everyone else, but maybe it’s really been me all along.

All the things that have been hard that I don’t talk about. That or worse, joke about in attempt to dull the depth of the pain that actually comes with them.

Everything boils down to the same jester I’ve always claimed. Human Eeyore at her best. Never wanting to be a bother, but eternally grateful for any thought or attention granted. Sometimes at her detriment. Always wanting to see eye to eye with another, to make a connection. Twist and shake in the bits that fit, glimpse the real when it’s safe. Close the door again. Lather. Rinse. Repeat.

Dias de los muertos

Assured that the dead would be insulted by mourning or sadness, Dia de los Muertos celebrates the lives of the deceased with food, drink, parties, and activities the dead enjoyed in life. Dia de los Muertos recognizes death as a natural part of the human experience, a continuum with birth, childhood, and growing up to become a contributing member of the community. On Dia de los Muertos, the dead are also a part of the community, awakened from their eternal sleep to share celebrations with their loved ones. https://www.nationalgeographic.org/media/dia-de-los-muertos/

If the people we love are stolen from us, the way to have them live on is to never stop loving them. Buildings burn, people die, but real love is forever.

The days you came, the days you left, they’ll never stop being celebrated as long as I breathe.

January 16
March 1
March 2
March 19
May 10
June 29
July 8
October 19
October 31
December 20

X

I’m not one to shout any accomplishment I make or even acknowledge that I’ve attempted to do something but…this one feels worth saying something about.

I quit smoking 10 years ago today.

Driving in to work this morning reminded me of the one change in my body that has made the frustration in the process worth it – my voice. I can sing again like I did in choir as a kid. I’m not great, but just that I can do it is enough. There’s always been a stupid hidden power for me in singing to myself in my car, alone in my house, but don’t ever ask me to sing in front of people. Not gonna happen no matter how often I’ve daydreamed about being a badass frontwoman.

I joked in my usual way in an Instagram post this morning that it’s nice to have a reminder now and again that I am capable of change when I actually try.

That’s the kicker though isn’t it? You actually have to try.

Forgiven

You know how us Catholic girls can be
We make up for so much time a little too late
I never forgot it, confusing as it was
No fun with no guilt feelings
The sinners, the saviors, the lover-less priests
I’ll see you next Sunday

We all had our reasons to be there
We all had a thing or two to learn
We all needed something to cling to
So we did

I sang Alleluia in the choir
I confessed my darkest deeds to an envious man
My brothers they never went blind for what they did
But I may as well have
In the name of the Father, the Skeptic and the Son
I had one more stupid question

We all had our reasons to be there
We all had a thing or two to learn
We all needed something to cling to
So we did

What I learned I rejected but I believe again
I will suffer the consequence of this inquisition
If I jump in this fountain, will I be forgiven

We all had our reasons to be there
We all had a thing or two to learn
We all needed something to cling to
So we did

We all had delusions in our head
We all had our minds made up for us
We had to believe in something
So we did

~ Alanis Morissette – Jagged Little Pill – Forgiven

All by myself

I’m having a week. Thankfully with J @ B’s for the weekend and the fantastic understanding human that is my best friend I am spending this weekend as a hermit to process and try to re-charge myself for the weeks to come.

There have been moments this week where observation has left me really hurting in a way I haven’t felt in a while. I think I’ve spent a good portion of the past four years a bit numbed to everything as a survival mechanism and I’m trying really hard to let myself feel things. The hard thing in that is that I don’t just want to feel them and let them lie there…I feel like I need to SAY something instead of just letting things build to my inevitable volcano that’s become my trademark.

I’m not even sure where to start, because actually being completely real about what I have going on in my sphere rolls into places that are not mine to share. Gone are those days of LJ where I would just spill and apologize for it later (or never). I can say this much, I am feeling some shit and I don’t really know what to do with it. I’m conflicted in a number of ways, enough that I write sentences here and decide not to move forward with them because it still admits too much and I just can’t do it. Not out of fear, but out of empathy.

I’ve spent a lot of time today dicking around the house but also considering where I am, where and who I’ve come from, who I’ve become and who I want to be. Existential crisis? Probably, but TBH I’m probably overdue for this type of shit.

Maybe that’s what’s driving me to want to learn tarot again. Something to give me focus other than on my own insecurities and inevitabilities that I’ll have to face. Trying so hard not to think about the people I’ve disappointed this week, or annoyed just by existing. Feeling the exact things I’ve dreaded coming to fruition.

Think I’ll try to study some of my tarot book before I call it a night. Maybe one more round of Monster Prom.

Personal Projects

Things remain generally awful in that ‘I wish I could take this away for these people I love, but I can’t so I’ll just love them’ kind of way.

In these times, my brain shifts to weird ‘leave your mark, say your piece’ type project ideas. I don’t know why, maybe it’s a brush with someone else’s mortality, fuck if I know. Maybe it’s because it’s easier to say the things to people/about people that you love in a roundabout art way than actually just saying ‘hey man, I love you’ or ‘this is why this stupid inanimate object means so much to me’.

So, projects.

I’ve been telling myself since we bought the house that I should put all my most prized items in a fire/waterproof safe of some kind. Most people would assume such a container would be saved for important papers and things with monetary value. Mine? Aside from some assumed paperwork I have notes, pictures, trinkets and concert tickets that need to be preserved. Those are my prized possessions, above all others the last card I got from my grandmother. These are priceless commodities to this heart. Much as I want to make that shadow box for Aaron, I’m more tempted to put his belongings right in there as well. Squirrel away all the things that once touched a loved one or emotionally touched me.

Part of putting those things away is documenting what they are, how I got them, and why they are important enough to be placed there i the first place.

The other project is not so tangible, but still worth it I think. Hardwick talked on one of the Nerdist casts eons ago about a playlist project he started for himself many years ago and still does. Each New Year’s Day he creates a new playlist and adds to it through the year songs that he found that year that he enjoyed or songs he listened to in general that year that triggered an emotional or memorial response.

I’d like to take that project with my own little spin and make friendlists. Playlists with tunes specifically tailored about or for my homies. They’ll probably end up with more songs than could go on a mixed CD, but fuck it. Someday maybe I’ll share them with them, maybe not.

These have been your random ass thoughts from the resident redhead who’s at hopefully the tail end of a cold and feeling like she needs to channel her nostalgic ass into some sort of tangible result.

The Ballad Of…

I’m aggravated that I can’t remember the name of that song right now. You played it for us one night when the back room was still yours. Ballad of Hollis Brown? Was that it? I can’t remember, but I want to listen to it. I need the notes, something to cling to besides blips of memory. What was that fucking song…?

I hate this. The complete and utter helplessness, uselessness. Wish it could be mine instead. Surprised it’s not mine instead. Weird fucking twist of fate that seems like cosmic dark humor that far surpasses my own. Fate, as always, you’re a raging cunt.

Judgement could fall this family as so little in some people’s eyes but they are so great in mine. A chaotic maelstrom of human emotion constantly holding each other up and keeping each other afloat. Their own little solar system. So much love in that house. So lucky to have it extended to me when I needed it. How often I ran there as a refuge from whatever battle I was waging. How often you accepted me at your doorstep without question (maybe with a dirty joke re: your son, but not so much question).

I’ve always loved the scars in people. The “flaws”. Good people always have a checkered story. Very few really interesting people have squeaky clean floorboards.

I remember going to pick you up in Ann Arbor from treatment. Wish I remembered it more for whatever conversation we had on the way back than I do the moments on our return. Although, I’m not even sure that I remember that afternoon correctly anyway. So many moments jumble into memories turned fuzzy around the edges.

I won’t romanticize you anymore than we do Aaron or I do my Grams. The real person is more than enough to love, I don’t need or want the heroic fairy tale variations people like to eulogize.

Simply, thank you. Thank you for your kindness, candor, and way of being. Thank you for giving me a father figure that doesn’t suck.

What now, don’t know, just wish I could take the burdens off your kid’s shoulders. However, that’s a battle we’ve been waging for way longer than this. Giving is his path; we’re just trying to make sure the destination isn’t a steep cliff. Keep an eye on him from the stars, sure you will, in one way or another.

I fight my battles in the shadows most people step on
A walking stride replaced with a dodge, parry, roll
Answer the questions with just enough to give someone a glimpse
See if they’ll take the bait and ask for another taste, a deeper embrace
Let’s dance with the shadows you and I

You and I

You and Me

I miss you two most desperately

Try, Try, Try

Tomorrow starts my rather belated Winter-een-mas vacation. Usually I take a break between Christmas and New Years from work to not only take in all the festivities of the season with family and friends but to reboot my introverted self back into some semblance of wanting to deal with other humans for another year without going into hermit mode.

With the multitude of things going on in my sphere as of late I struggle greatly with carving out the space I used to have where creativity seemed to blossom, even just for a moment. When a spark hits my nerves and I want to write again, something else inevitably requires the attention that such endeavors deserve.

What I hope for in this week off aside from the rejuvenation I so dire find myself in want of is to rekindle some bit of this part of myself again. Be it here, in actual written form, or just something besides the drivel that seems to escape my lips day to day. I’ll take it.

Where there is desire there will always be a flame.

When?

I have a question.
I don’t have an answer.
I suspect that you won’t either.

When is it acceptable to call attention to an injustice you observe?
When is it acceptable to teach others a new perspective?
When is it acceptable to hold up a sign calling attention to a problem?
When is it acceptable to act vs. observe?

I gather that, despite all the contradictory praise our society wishes to give to those who fight for their beliefs in retrospect, when actually presented with a set of human beings doing so, we shun them. We question their belief structure, humanity, faith, intelligence, pride.

When isn’t it acceptable to call attention to an injustice you observe?
When isn’t it acceptable to teach others a new perspective?
When isn’t it acceptable to hold up a sign calling attention to a problem?
When isn’t it acceptable to act vs. observe?

When?