Perfect Sight

There is a white hot rage in me, mixed in with a black tar rotting decay. A festering volcano, the afterbirth of trauma. Lack of control of internal emotional processes. This is a legacy of being overpowered, you really lose agency over yourself. At it’s worst, it is an ultimate loss of control, so-called madness, insanity. In it’s more mature manifestations, at least one can manage their outward behaviour, but the inner realms are lawless lands, where the past roams free and bleeds into the now, staining everything.

Times heals nothing. Going through the fire is what cauterizes, disinfects, and heals. And you cannot run through because then you are simply incinerated. You actually have to walk through. Slowly. It is a strange truth. I never thought I would have the strength to do this. To cut out the people who needed to be cut out, to speak the deeds that were done, to face the past and say no more.

Even as a child I knew my parents had to go, at some point. I always knew they were not for me. The clarity of this was so intense for so long, I’m not sure why it dissolved. Why did I feel like I needed them? The raw rage of youth was so wise, so true. When did I stop listening? I am not sure. I lacked vision when I was younger, the vision of truly escaping them. It was unimaginable. It was a freedom beyond mental conjuring. Rage is so valuable if we take what is best in it – the seed of truth. There is a reason we feel it. To understand this reason and  plant this reason into our consciousness so we may reap the appropriate actions, this is how we can use rage.

You already know everything you need to know. Any tool from the outside is to help you get inside. Clarity is there. You just need to clean your vision. Or rather, clarity comes through cleaning vision, and you already have perfect sight.

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The past repeats itself until it is faced. I am learning this, as many do, the hard way. It’s the repetition that pains the most. A new heartbreak at least breaks a new part, something previously untouched by life. The same old wound repeatedly pierced is somehow more degrading. Part of the insult of trauma is the over and over, the refusal of the past to pass. You are crystallized in time, for though the body ages and wrinkles form on the brow, deep inside, it is the same horror, the same grief as the days, years, even decades before.

Face the past. The past feels faceless and nameless, more like the water that drowns you as you try to swim. But is it water that drowns, or the inability to swim? Swimming takes practice. Water gives life, if approached appropriately. Everything can be learned. The past can provide strength. If we learn how to handle the past, we can find understanding, peace even. Everything is possible.


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Both my hamster and I are sneezing. I am unsure of what afflicts her delicate little nostrils. She afflicts mine. Could we be allergic to each other? She certainly mirrors my emotional states, and I feel a degree of responsibility for her when she is agitated or neurotic. It is interesting to watch her. She makes things harder for herself. She pushes away the little box I place under the tube, as a step, and then struggles to climb into the tube. She pushed it away. I placed it there for her. What is she thinking? And yet, I do the same, constantly. People, opportunities, money, push it away and struggle to climb out of the darkness alone.

Some heartbreak is too perfect. You cannot help but admire the handiwork, the perfect befuckery of your deeds. In sparring some weeks ago, I faced a very advanced boxer, and couldn’t help but admire her power and skill as she beat the shit out of me. The pains of life are like this too, so brilliantly orchestrated that they invoke as much awe as they do misery. We are strange creatures, ruining our own lives in profound ways. But that just means we’re in control. More control than we want to face. The power of an individual to shape their own life is immense. And to forget this, too dangerous.

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In 28 years, have I learned nothing?

Feels like it, certainly. This is not true. Yet the big ones, the big mistakes, the big cycles, seem to keep repeating. Some days, I just want to hurt people. I don’t, on purpose at least. I have enough sense for that. I pride myself that I don’t go out of my way to say the mean thing, to give a nasty look, to hurt someone who has hurt me. The choice is the truth of you, not the feeling. But untamed desires whirl their way into conscious action through subconscious means, and the end result is almost the same. Almost worse, done naively.

Mine the subconscious. Extract, transform. Use what can be used, discard the rest. “We are here to build the house.” says Cheryl Strayed. Very true. I am living in a small shack with some very good materials, but it’s in shambles now. Lots of potential. Learning how to build is the deed. What is building and what is merely smashing shapes together.

Carpentry, something I have done very little, loved what little I have done, and admired greatly as a craft. Time to learn, in the workshop of metaphor, the timber of my collected past. Build, build, build.

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To be ruined and then ruin. To perpetuate. I am what was done to me, and I am what I do, and it feels like these two things are mirrors facing one another, repeating the same damaging, vicious cycles and over and over, irrefutable and insurmountable. This is the psyche, ever molded by what it encounters, and yet with our sensibilities, our choices, we can reform this tragic figure into something better. Something of worth and valor.

Hope and optimism always reveal themselves in my writing more than when I am alone in my thoughts, or even composing something in my mind to write. As though writing is more essential to my survival than even I can understand. I do not believe I have much value other than as an artist. I am a terrible partner, insecure and demanding, an emotional leech after the charm has been exhausted. A decent enough friend, but jealous and judgmental. Self-pitying in all regards, it seems. Fair employee, given the right environment. No longer a daughter (out of choice, not death).

The realness of valuing my artist self most has plagued me, and troubled others due to showing a lack of self-worth and self-love. There’s some truth there, but is it so wrong to believe that the best of what you are is exposed in certain deeds? And to value those deeds, and the pursuit of those deeds, above all else? There is always a flaw in the extreme, but there is a flaw or two in everything. I run from what I am, I run from the best of who I am then I wonder why I drudge along in self-hatred. Run into your own arms. A strange, silly paradox of impossibility, but the idea stands. You are the diver about to dive, and the waiting ocean.

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Next Days

Yesterday as I sat at a cafe I felt a profound sense of bliss. I was reading Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl, and came across this passage:

A thought transfixed me: for the first time in my life I saw the truth as it is set into song by so many poets, proclaimed as the final wisdom by so many thinkers. The truth—that love is the ultimate and the highest goal to which man can aspire. Then I grasped the meaning of the greatest secret that human poetry and human thought and belief have to impart: The salvation of man is through love and in love.

It was comforting to know that I was not alone in this deeply held belief, and over the years I have distanced myself from it. Over the years I have cut myself away from my own wisdom, due to the painful isolation it brings when most turn to cynicism and anger and call themselves learned.

Love is paramount. And suddenly a part of me returned that had been long absent. My inner realm has been taken over by recent heartbreak and it’s subsequent anger, sorrow, and confusion. In loves’ bliss, the voice and internal presence of that beloved has reigned, and I can only hear his voice in my mind, but yesterday I found myself free of his loveliness at last, and could sit in the corner seat of the cafe, listening fully to the jazz flowing through the speakers, admiring the light as it reflected off the embossed wallpaper. I was integrated. A key term in trauma recover, in a process I am beginning, but in many moments in life I have found this. An actual existence. The questions that plague the ever philosophical mind disappear, and one simply is. There is a reason artists and thinkers and the like are always so troubled. We must travel to understand, to explore. There is no way out but through. And there is no use in resenting what must be traversed. It must be done.

You think your pain and your heartbreak are unprecedented in the history of the world, but then you read. It was books that taught me that the things that tormented me most were the very things that connected me with all the people who were alive, who had ever been alive.

– James Baldwin.

A variation of a similar quote from him, but I cannot find that one verbatim… It is something like your suffering is meaningless unless someone else can connect their suffering to yours.

It is true. Everyone I have ever loved, admired, it was because pain shaped them into something similar to me, a recognizable shape, amid the apathetic alien creatures that surrounded me. Loss and grief and injustice are horrible. How we cope with them creates new worlds. New hope, new possibilities, new futures. It doesn’t have to hurt so bad. It doesn’t have to be this way forever.

I am tired of self-pity, of anger and bitterness. I am waiting on biopsy results to see if I have cancer [edit: results benign] , and my gut feeling is that it’s bad. I feel this warmth in my breast, in this tumor, a warmth exactly like anger. I have spent my life so filled with rage, and never sufficiently let it out. My body has collected it all like precious metals and gems, and formed a priceless rock of anger inside my chest. Disease is the art of the body. It is expression of the repressed. Emotion is not an imagined fable. It is as real as love, as death, as the knife that pierces and kills. As the knife that sets you free from bondage. Deny it at your peril.

I am tired of being less than I am. And my time might be running out. Might be out. How much I would like to be alive.

The light through the leaves of the trees outside my window is simply beautiful, and I though parts of me manage to be bitter and angry, other parts let go at simple pleasures. There is a slight smell of urine from my hamsters sizable residence, placed near my desk, but she is sweet and funny enough that I find it acceptable.

The desire for validation is so immense. To be told that I am right in some way, have something valuable to offer, am finding good insight despite floating among the wreckage, grasping the horizon with my feeble sight, searching for land. So often, in this feeling, I simply need to sink a little deeper and realize that the water has become shallow, and that I am almost home.

The desire for love is so immense. The desire for company. Nothing wrong with desire. Nothing is wrong at all.

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The Return

Nothing I love or know better than madness. Everything good in me bound into the monster as well. In chaos it comes out. A healthy normal life is always a lie for people like us. You cannot run or hide. You simply lie until you ruin your life with illusions, and then the truth of your own warped mind is too heavy to bear.

My old friend suicide returns, remaining tangential in the mind, the soul. The addictive affection of annihilation. I am a tormenter best. I learned from the best. And who can take my lineage, my crown from me.

Only in pain I make art and create. Only in the biggest sufferings. There is no other way. You make art or you have peace. Maybe you make art to have peace. Because the non-art peace is just a lie. I am tired of being tame. And no one wanting me. I don’t want me anymore. I never have.

I want the crystallized version of me. The reduced, distilled, pure, and then hardened unbreakable version of me. Maybe this is what life is giving me. This is the process I want. For the result I want. A purer cleaner understanding of my most human self.

I do not exist without the constant call for destruction. This is my nature. I must channel it correctly. I want to be no monster. I want a human life. Sometimes happiness. I am afraid of myself, more than any fist or weapon. I fear my will. My loneliness. And my passion for purity of experience.

I am suffering again. I am writing again.

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