Second Childhood

One small victory. I helped someone to ease their own discomfort. Thanks, SJ, for letting me know my suggestion worked. That gets marked up in the column that says ‘See? Talking helps. And you do have experience and ideas that can benefit other people.’ We all need a few more marks on that side of the column.

Found I was starving. I’ve been light on food for months since all this began, and the last week I was down to a small can of soda and a very small bit of one meal as ‘food for the day’. So I ate. I forced down a breakfast yesterday, which wasn’t fun. I picked up a small snack like meal for noon at the store downstairs. I ate a full dinner, loaded up with healthy carbs to absorb the excess bile in my stomach. Lo and behold, the headache stopped. Much of the pain stopped. My system, while still screwed, is better. I can tell I’m beginning to recover.

Good Goddess! The girl who couldn’t stop eating now can’t eat enough.

Getting together Sunday with the theatre crew to finally see the vids from last season’s performance. Both looking forward to it and dreading it. Looking forward to getting my ego stroked; I know I performed well. Dreading it because…well, it’s the theatre group. I’m trying my best to make friends, but I feel that barrier. Can’t seem to get past the acquaintance bar. And I don’t know why. Is it because they hold back from revealing themselves, and I’m naturally reacting to that? Is it because I sense some deeper, slightly less savory aspects of their personalities? No idea. Also expect to hear that they will NOT be doing my script this autumn. Too long since the reading, and no word. That’s never good. I’m already building up my defenses; getting ready to say ‘Yes, I expected that was your answer – and that’s okay. I know the group is pressed for time this year.’ Steeling myself to feel disappointed. Reminding myself of the US interest, and my plans to take it to podcast. The still relevant future possibility of taking it to film. I don’t want to feel that sinking out of body feeling when it gets rejected. I hate that.

Burying my head in reading. I am such a child, reading at this slow rate. Dragging that inner voice through these big, complex words. Sounding things out. Pondering, then understanding. It is annoying and delightful in equal measures. Don’t know if I’m dreaming in Dutch yet or not; I’m not remembering any dreams lately. But I can honestly say I was talking aloud to myself and I slipped in the Dutch word ‘wandelen’ (a walk or stroll) and I couldn’t for the life of me come up with the English equivalent tho I knew full well the meaning of the word. So, something is changing up there in my brain.

Studiously avoiding thinking about my upcoming visit with Dr. T, the psychiatrist. I get too wound up when I think of it. I know, vaguely, what to expect. I know, vaguely, what I want to say. That’s good enough. I don’t need to prep out a full speech (like I usually do). I don’t want to do that. I want him to see me struggle for words, English or Dutch. That’s the truth I hide. It’s why I talk aloud to myself: run through every variation of every conversation, every question, everything I can possibly imagine so I can come up with a pat answer ahead of time. And I use it. Every day, I catch myself paraphrasing my own answers – mostly from these early morning writing-rambles. If you don’t know I’m doing it, I can sound pretty damned together. Coherent, and on top of it. Oh, what a font of wisdom! Glad it appears that way to you. But now, it’s my time. Now it’s time to talk about me. To reveal my real struggles and problems. Not just my post struggle understanding of my problem(s), but the struggle itself. I don’t plan on going in there and ‘fritzing out’, as I call it in my head, but I don’t think it would be bad thing if it happened.

Picking up the day to day again. Got some fresh air yesterday. Today I plan on tackling the cleaning. Getting myself back on small tasks: short walks, dishes, making my bed. Have to sit and drag myself through some homework, too. Especially since tomorrow is a bust for time.

*sigh* I’d rather just sit and enjoy my book…

For all the years I was lost in confusion, unable to even make the simplest of choices for myself, I’m finding that I hold a strong core of very definitive likes and dislikes. The girl in me likes to read. So much so that she’ll fight doing all sorts of things in favor of sitting in a chair with her favorite book. And while the girl in me acknowledges the fact that my ever present back-pack is a far more handy way to carry my incidentals when I leave the house, she wants to be girly and carry a purse sometimes. Entertainment? Make the girl shiver. She likes horror and creepy stories, things that frighten her so much she turns the lights on. Food: while she likes it, she also hates it. She is a proponent of starving. Skip meals, don’t eat, lose weight.

It’s difficult to integrate all that. Especially when it’s so in my face right now.

Meh. Second childhoods suck.



It is NOT just withdrawal. Nope. Indulged after my 4am freak storm. While I felt a bit better, it didn’t stop the feeling of a knife sliding into my temple. It’s a light sensation compared to what I’ve been through but still there. No…this isn’t just withdrawal. This is something else. Neuralgia? Maybe. Not for me to diagnose. Just for me to live through.

My biggest fear in all of this is they’ll end up saying ‘it’s stress’. And then every time I complain about something, that’ll be their first go-to explanation. It’s a discount. And it’s why I don’t go to the doc with every single complaint. I know my body reacts to stress. I know about sleep problems, digestion problems, headaches, etc. because I’ve lived it. This ain’t any of that. Or if it is, it’s at a new, hitherto unexperienced level. That’s scary. Just contemplating it is scary.

Woke up to a shitload of crap in my inbox. Mostly junk. But one email from the theatre group. It was ‘Hey everybody! The date for watching the video is coming up fast. Where are we meeting?’ I didn’t even know the date was coming up fast; no one told me a date had been decided on. I sent a note back saying ‘Didn’t know the date had been set. I know I’m not on your social network, but please let me know when and where. I’d like to see the video with everyone.’ Hope that wasn’t mean or nasty. Didn’t mean it to be. But…really! I have to roll my eyes with these people. They’re all so “connected” yet they can’t keep me informed? If they used the tools they tout, like Facebook (which we’re all on), this wouldn’t happen. It’s their insistence that FB is old school and out of date that creates this situation with me out of the loop. In my eyes, that’s one more way to just exclude me. You’re old school, you’re out of date, no one uses that anymore. Then why try to use it to advertise the group? Why claim you’ll communicate thru one medium and then throw that away and make it difficult by using another medium that not everyone in the group has?

…Gods. Whatever. I’m not putting all my eggs in that basket.

Been talking with my bro about producing my scripts via his company. He’s under pressure to produce something, some product that uses Dutch people and is done right here. I want to see my work done. Yesterday we got a flyer from a place within walking distance that’s got sound proofed rehearsal rooms and a small recording studio. Our home studio is…well, shoved in a corner, under wraps, and currently needs some repairs to be back to 100% usefulness. This new place advertises room rates that we could afford. My brother is beginning to be excited. I’ve been spending loads of time on YouTube, culling through all the unsolved mysteries and creepy stories looking for new subject matter. Why not do my scripts? We can monetize them on-line. Frankly, I’m sick and tired of hearing about internet millionaires while simultaneously seeing such a small trickle of income reach me. So the talk is now of renting rooms, finding actors, producing my scripts. My thriller trilogy is so sound intensive it can easily be turned into an audio script. And I’ve already got a radio script set to produce. Find a few creepy pictures to accompany the productions, and viola. The idea hits all the bases: my brother’s need to produce something here using Dutch people, my desire to have my work done, it’s within our financial abilities, and it’ll be something that can generate some money.

I like that. Something real I can hang my hat on. Something I know I can trust. Not blindly sending out, never hearing squat again. Not teasing me, almost making the cut. Not dependent on some mysterious board decision or someone else’s assessment of whether or not they can pull it off. The sound can be exactly what I want. Oh, I know how to make you shiver!

Managed to get back to reading Dutch. My language skills are weird. Don’t know if everyone goes through this or not. It’s like puzzle pieces falling into place. I look at the sentences; sometimes I get it right away and sometimes not, depending on the words used. If I don’t get it, I stare. I re-read. And then it kind of slides into place. Something clicks in my head, and I get it. I don’t know how I’m doing it. But every time I do do it and run to my dictionary to check and see if I’ve got it right, I’ve got it right. Reminding myself I did this with English. I have one or two memories of doing it. As a kid I didn’t question that kind of nonverbal understanding. As an adult, it scares me a bit. Makes me question myself. I keep asking ‘is that right?’ But the words are coming. My head gobbles them up, whether or not I want it to. I can feel it. A word becomes a stand-out for me. I become uncomfortably aware of it in all its versions. Slowly the meaning gets seared into my brain. It’s weird. Just plain weird. I’m not getting the language from repetition, tho that helps in recognition. It’s something deeper than repetition. Once again, I can’t explain it because I just don’t have the right words. Or maybe the right words don’t exist, at least in English. Maybe I’ll find them in Dutch.

Want to get out of the house today, if my stomach lets me. Go for some fresh air and walk around the neighborhood. I know I need it.

I’ve been off for months.

I need to re-establish balance.

The freak factor

Bleh. It’s 4 in the morning and I’m up. Sweated up my pj’s. Headache. Oh, I’m tired – but I can’t sleep. Welcome to withdrawal. I’ve been so damned harsh on myself lately that I went a little too far with quitting/cutting back. Shoulda been a bit easier on myself.

So. The dentist gave me the all clear. Told me ‘try not to worry’. Oh, Gods. Try not to worry. If I was given a nickel every time I heard that, I’d be rich. He did remove my stitches, saying the area around the thread was red and a little infected. That hurt. When he gave me a syringe with specific instructions on how to clean the wound and said ‘it’s gonna hurt when you do this’ I thought: well, at least he’s honest. But he was honest on the cautious side; it doesn’t hurt at all compared to him pulling those stitches out.

*sigh* And last night as I put my mouth guard in, I saw a hole in the guard. Right where all the problems are. Must have bit right thru it. Physical evidence of what my subconscious mind is willing to do to me doesn’t make me feel any better.

Thought a lot yesterday about my post. I realized I really don’t refer to myself by my given name any more. At 30, I chose a stage name. Something I liked, someone I wanted to be. I took it as my own. As I writer, I have an entirely different pen name. Even out here, I prefer to call myself Beeps. Anything but the name my mother gave me. It struck me that maybe that was a mistake. Maybe I wasn’t really getting thru to the little girl in me, because the little girl (like it or not) identified with the name her mother gave her. Trying to call myself by that childhood diminutive when I talk to myself. I keep forgetting and reverting back to one of my adult names. Then I correct myself. Doing a lot of hugging myself, stroking my upper arms, rocking in my chair. Comfort actions, all.

Crap. How the hell did I get here? How the hell did I slip past so fucking much and end up such a complete mess?

…Right. That isn’t gonna help. You feel sick. Okay. You’re in a shitty place. Okay. You know what this is. Your body’s suffering nicotine withdrawal. You’ve done really, really well on cutting back. But you never said you’d quit entirely. Cut yourself some slack. Everyone says ‘tough it out’ but they don’t have to live it, do they? No. They go home to their comfortable houses with their comfortable lives and their comfortable sleep patterns that never, ever get disturbed.

Smoke something. Get rid of the worst of the headache. Get rid of the worst of the nausea.

Hell! I haven’t even been able to enjoy reading Matilda because I’ve felt so off. That makes me sadder than anything.

This isn’t a failure. This isn’t a failure. There is no failure. How do you feel in your skin? Horrible? Then take care of yourself. Get yourself past right now. You have two choices: freak out, or deal. I know you want to freak out. I know. You don’t just want to, you feel like you gotta. But freaking out is gonna make it worse.

…Counter intuitive to all those therapists out there, not breathing is helpful. All that deep breathing crap when I’m tight in my body makes me feel like I’m gasping for air, trying to breathe deep and relax. I’ve always run contrary, so try the opposite. Exhale, and hold. Notice you’re still here. Nothing’s happened. …Can’t say my body feels too much more relaxed but it does help on the freak factor.

And as the clock ticks toward five, controlling the freak factor is all I’m after.

I. you. me.

People say you’re brave if you feel afraid and still take action. Courage isn’t a lack of fear, it’s not letting fear stop you. I’m not quite buying that. If that were true, I’d have full reason to call myself brave. Yesterday I didn’t dither. I marched my ass straight over to the dentist, told them what was going on, and made an appointment for today. But the whole time I was scared shitless. Going home I was scared shitless. Trying to calm myself down afterwards and tell myself that I only had 24 hours to wait, and I was scared shitless. I don’t feel brave. I just don’t want yet more pain, and in my experience not going to the dentist results in worse pain than going to the dentist. So I chose the lesser of two pains. That ain’t brave. That’s chicken shit. [Side note: the infection spot is gone. Completely. Suffered thru a few hours of horrible taste in my mouth; probably it seeped out. Still want the area checked.]

My Dutch isn’t as good as I thought. The pharmacy sent me a text to say my meds were ready to be picked up. Really? I thought the doc put a hold on those. But, sure enough, there were my little pills, handed to me by a smiling assistant. My bro says I should make an appointment with my doctor, that she’s responsible for “heavy duty” drugs, and she might get in trouble if she doesn’t have all her paperwork in order. So I’ll do that today, online. Easy peasy. I haven’t even opened the box of pills. I don’t want to open the box. I just want them on hand the next Sunday morning or 6 o’clock in the evening pain I can’t handle hits me. That’s what happens. Do I feel this awful when everything is open? No. I’m fine then. But close down the doctors and the pharmacies and my body will hit me with everything plus the kitchen sink. Psychological? Maybe. But it’s a pattern in my life, and I’d be stupid to ignore it or say it doesn’t exist.

Waited around for a call from my jaw physiotherapist, knowing it would probably be five in the evening before she called but also knowing if I headed out she’d find some free moment to call me right then when it was difficult to hear her and I had no paper to make notes. My bro offered to find a Roald Dahl book in Dutch for me at the library. He came home with Matilda – a story I’ve studious avoided because of the sugary sweet films by the same name I’ve seen advertised. Going thru it with a fine toothed comb, as the saying goes. My teachers keep asking me ‘Are there words you don’t know?’ after I read a book. Sure! But I can either read through them, pick up the meaning from the surrounding language, or look them up. This time, I’m trying to write down every word I don’t know. I’m noting pages and paragraphs, those pesky Dutch phrases that use words I’m familiar with but seem to make no sense when I put them together. And I’m making a list, too, of those short words that pop up everywhere: al, toe, maar, toch. Really, what DOES ‘Nou, toch!’ mean? I understand it’s an exclamation similar to ‘Now, really!’. Doesn’t convey much, which is why I term it verbal garbage. But it’s that important verbal garbage native speakers have and use all the time. I need it.

Tried a couple of times to write something for my upcoming psychiatrist appointment. Goals. Problems. Things I want to remember to say to him. It’s not going well. I’m discounting everything before I even write it down. Second guessing myself. Don’t even know where to start with him. The immediate problem? Sure. But then you need the back story, and to get the back story you gotta go back to the beginning and – ugh. Trying to get some perspective on it. Standing back and saying ‘okay, you can tell all these stories and little details, but can you sum it up in a few sentences?’ I know I’m depressed, but there’s another side of it few people see. I can’t relax. My mind won’t let me rest. And I can work myself into illness, pain, and probably death when I’m excited and engaged in a project. I view my work as either shit or the greatest thing ever; very rarely can I see or feel the in-between. I have problems verbalizing, and need to write before I can coherently speak. When I grow frustrated, I freeze up mentally and don’t have any words in English or Dutch. …Now, how come I can type that but I can’t write it long-hand? Fine. Take it out of your hands. I’ve copied that bit and put it on my desktop. Just translate it into Dutch as best as you can and use that.

Yes, yes: you, I. I mix them up terribly when I talk to myself. The reason for that is this duality I feel; I am both you and I in my writing. I’m screaming at myself, chiding myself, telling myself all these things. I know that. I talks about the things I’ve accepted. You comes in on those things I doesn’t have down pat (think about it; the grammar will make sense). It’s nothing new, and one of the reasons I prefer writing in third person. I don’t fall into it when no one is me.

I know I’m scared. You doesn’t think I’m angry enough. You doesn’t think I’ve got this processed through my body. You sometimes grows frustrated with I, which really gives me a conundrum. You wants me to talk. I doesn’t want to. Or is it the other way around?

I’m lost. I. you. me.

No one else will


Sick. I feel sick. All the time. It’s a side effect of the antibiotics I’m on: upset stomach and diarrhea. Right now I’m running to the toilet so fast I’m not sure I even want to step outside the house. Does not help that I can still see an infection in my mouth. I’m gonna have to go back to the dentist. And he’s gonna want to tinker more. And I don’t want him to.

Wondering if I’m just old now. If I’ve reached that point when all my teeth just have to come out because I’m fucking falling apart. I ain’t dying; no such fucking luck. I know the signs of the body going into shut-down, and I’m not there. I’ve still got color in my cheeks and red lips. Which means one thing: I gotta suffer thru it. No matter what. Death ain’t that close.

Telling myself I’ve one day more on my anti-biotic. Telling myself that this IS livable, many people have false teeth and live a full life. Telling myself all that and more, but between the number the pills are doing on my stomach and my anxiety I’m not in a good place.

And the world ain’t helping.

Had a call from my GP about the morphine pills. I asked for another refill; not getting it, unless I go in and explain myself to the doc. Been on them “too long”. It was hard enough to ask for help in the first place. I don’t feel worth it. I’ll just sit here and let the pain come until I can’t take it anymore, then go to hospital and cry and scream. It’s all I deserve anyway.

…Fucking yeah. Fucking really depressed this morning. I know it. I know I’ve been battling it back for days.

News just heaps more anxiety and hate on my head. Can I call like I see it? I’d like to get three people I can think of out of the states. Then bomb it. Totally. Wipe it out. Kill everyone. They’re a mad bunch of psychopaths who are ruining the world. Let’s do everyone a favor and stop it. I sure as fuck don’t want to keep hearing about how they love their guns and hate their children. And the rest of the world wonders why American children who escape that prison hate their country and their ‘people’ so fucking much.

You know what I heard the other day? That Americans made a ‘mistake’. That’s how 45 was referred to, as a ‘little mistake’. Yeah. Electing a dictator was a ‘little mistake’. Electing a man who’s proud of the fact he’s a sexual predator was a ‘little mistake’. Electing a racist liar was a ‘little mistake’.

The sheer wall of ignorant hatred coming from the US is stifling. Horrifying.

And yeah, you’d better keep me out of those borders. ‘Cause if I have to go back, I ain’t goin’ down alone. Got it?

Goddess damn them all!

…*sigh*… And the sheer hypocrisy over the fact that no one seems, on a day to day basis, to get it. How can you be happy when there’s all this shit in the world? How can you feel good about yourself when you support an autocratic, dictatorial regime? How can you feel so ‘right’? Doesn’t it bother you that slavery still exists? Doesn’t it bother you that kids are killing kids? Doesn’t it bother you that human life is so fucking cheap we’ve got throw away people? But no. Those of you who can hold your shield of denial tight in your little hands are ‘okay’ and ‘normal’. I, who feel everything, am ‘wrong’ and ‘abnormal’.

I fucking hate the bell curve.

Just because I grew up in a time when most people were clinically insane makes me the odd one out. Doesn’t matter if their view on the world is skewed; it’s the ‘norm’, that high point of the bell curve that most people fall under and anything else is outside that norm and must be, by definition, ‘wrong’. There’s an old saying that a one eyed man in a land of the blind would be king, but that’s not correct. A one eyed man in a land of the blind would be locked up and medicated because no one else would be experiencing what he’s experiencing and thus he would be deemed ‘insane’. Doctors would spend their lifetimes trying to teach the seeing man that he’s just imagining it, or that he needs to breathe through it, or that if he just talks about his mother or father or the boy who bullied him enough everything will be fine and he’ll stop seeing what he’s seeing.

THAT is how I view the world. You’re fucked, not me. I’ve been asking for a lobotomy or some sort of equivalent on and off for years because it seems to me that’s what it’ll take for me to forget all the horror on this planet and just fucking smile and talk about the latest tv episode of the latest show everyone has to fucking watch like fucking zombies without a fucking thought in their own fucking heads. Go on. Maybe then I’ll smile as I kneel down to suck you off, you fuckers. Maybe then I’ll forget how much I hate you. Maybe then I’ll think like you: that sex is the pinnacle of human existence. That’s it. Just sex. Fuck, fuck, fuck. Up the ass, in the vagina, in the mouth, just fuck everything and everyone as hard and as fast as you fucking can because that’s it. There is no more, no greater reason, nothing more to aspire to. Forget intellect. Forget spirituality. Humanity is all about the orgy. Blood and semen and sweat mixed, violence and sex mixed, all in one big groaning and gyrating ball of legs and arms.

You’re all so empty.

Rx: smoke a joint, woman. I know; yesterday wasn’t good on smoke. And we both know it’s not an ideal solution. But remember our number one priority? Take care of ourselves. You’re on the edge of busting a gut, or making yourself so sick from anger and anxiety that you’ll cause real long term problems. You’re gonna feel better once the meds are done. You will live through whatever comes your way. Smoking now, or smoking today, isn’t gonna change much. So take care of yourself right now.

No one else will.


Please hear me

Oh, blessed silence! Why do people have to make so much damned noise the moment they wake up? TV goes on, radio goes on, coffee maker goes on, shower goes on, and talk, talk, talk. Some people seem to go from the quiet of sleep to full volume in under ten seconds.

How can you even think?

Amazed at how well my face/empty tooth slot is doing. Seems to swell up a bit during the day with talking, and it’s still tender. But damn! Healing very well, very fast. Happy about that.

Happy about not smoking much, too. It’s pretty easy for me to sit and not smoke for most of the day. I’m allowing myself one to two Js if I want, tho I know it’s better if I don’t. But I am no longer reaching towards an ashtray every ten minutes to grab a joint and take a hit. That action is already gone. Want to stay at this level. Only smoke a J in the evening – one J – while I watch tv? Only think about a second joint if I’m really fucking upset and out of sorts and I’ve already tried my reading and game playing and other distractions? Yeah, that’s pretty fucking good.

Finished my book in Dutch. Just in time to turn it in during class. Began reading the CS Lewis I checked from the library. That’s tougher, and I might just return it and find something else. I don’t mind reading something that every few paragraphs throws me a word or phrase I don’t understand. But when that frequency jumps to every sentence, I find it hard to keep going. It becomes a drag, stopping and looking up every word, trying to figure out these long Dutch sentences. My head shuts down, and I don’t want to read. And I want to want to read.

Anxiety is very high. Keep reminding myself to relax my shoulders, let them drop naturally. Five minutes later and I’ve got my shoulders hunched up again. Keep breathing deeply, trying to reset or find some zen point. Must not be doing it right, because it’s not sticking at all. And I never really do relax.

Thinking about real goals. Concrete goals, not that thin soup of ‘I want to be happy’. What a fucking lame request. ‘I want to be happy’. Too vague, and not enough signposts to even know if I’ve reached my goal or not. I don’t know what the fuck happy looks like. Last time I thought I was in the ballpark of happy I clenched my jaw until I hurt like hell and ended up breaking one of my teeth. That doesn’t sound happy to me, and that’s the closest I think I’ve got.

So. Simple, but concrete goals. First: really relax. Really feel all my muscles turn to mush. Really let myself sleep just as long as I want. I want 24 hours (minimum) without finding I’m holding my shoulders tight, without having to deep breathe through anxiety, without that sick feeling in my stomach. I’ve gotta know what that physically feels like, ’cause right now I’m clueless. Second: chill. I’d like to walk out my front door without my heart rate jumping up into the hundreds because I’m afraid. Sometimes Often that happens with simple things, like going to the supermarket or the gym. It makes life difficult. Third: I want the first two goals without turning me into a zombie. I want to still be able to think, to do my homework, to write. Don’t chain my mind down. It’ll make it worse in the long run.

Everything else is kind of gravy.

Things I don’t want to hear: I don’t want to hear this is a long process. I don’t want to hear I’ll ‘have to talk it out eventually’. I don’t want to be told what to do, how to act, what to eat. I don’t want to be told what I already know, either. No tired old memes thrown out at me verbally because you don’t know what the fuck else to say. I don’t want to be ignored. If I say I do something (or don’t do something) I’m being honest. Remember honesty? It’s something old fashioned, and I’m old fashioned, so I still do it. Don’t nag at me about something I’ve already told you I’m all over. It tells me you don’t believe me, and if you don’t believe me, why the fuck should I believe you?

Suggestions: Refer to any appointments with the psychiatrist as ‘check-ups’. Just a verbal check, seeing how I’m doing, a little chat, and that’s it. No in depth therapy. Nope. Just a chat. That doesn’t scare me. I’ll chat away about all sorts of things. That’s never been the problem, and anyone who’s talked with me in the last six months knows that. I’ll talk about the abuse, my lack of self confidence, the mania and the depression.

Most of all: don’t push me. I am a stubborn animal. I don’t mean to be, but when someone tells me I must or I will no matter what, I balk. Dig my feet in and say ‘No!’ Case in point: my dad always harped at me that I’d have to learn how to drink coffee. Outcome? I wouldn’t even try coffee before I was 30. Don’t tell me what I must do, because I’ll do my damnedest to avoid it.

I want help I can accept. If you make it into something I can’t accept it’ll just frustrate me and make me quit. So, chats. Check-ups. Nothing heavy. Don’t say long term.

Please, please, don’t freak me out any more than I am.

And…allow me time. Allow me thought. I do things differently. Just accept that, okay? I’ve heard it for 52 years. I’m okay with it. I need YOU to be okay with it, too.

This is me asking for what I need.

Please hear me.


Too much noise. The neighbor is playing loud music. I can hear the traffic outside, my brother down the hall. The tv is on – at this point, just as a mask for the worst of the offending sounds.

Gods, I should have hauled my ass out of bed earlier.

Feeling like the world is doing its best to throw me off balance. Now that I’ve made the decision to seek out and accept medical assistance, I keep hearing about talk therapy. I don’t want talk therapy.

I don’t want to talk.

I want to stop talking about it.

Now, some people say: you gotta talk that out until you have nothing left to say. Um…I’m 52. That’s 52 years of shit to ‘talk’ out. Honestly, I can’t get through it in my lifetime. I’ll die before I reach ‘the end’ (which I think is a fallacy; there is no ‘end’ to it).

I’d rather write. For many years, I’ve said if you really want to know me you’ve got to read my writing. That’s where I’m most coherent. Most thoughtful. Most able to use words to communicate.

There’s nothing wrong with that. There’s nothing wrong with the way I’m approaching this.

I keep telling myself that.

Today I’m gonna wash everything off me. Stand under the shower and just let the water wash it all away. The sour left over fear smell from my dental procedure. The stink of doubt that hangs over me like my own private thundercloud.


Just for me

It’s done. I guess when you go into dental surgery, you want a dentist who’s good and, preferably, fast. I got both. In and out in under 10 minutes. Barely any swelling. Sore, but that’s to be expected.

Can’t help but chide myself a bit. Well, there you go. You wound yourself up about this for two damned weeks and it only took 10 minutes. Once more I’m vowing to myself to do better, to  stay calmer, to not panic the next time something comes up.

Yeah. Right.

Spending the weekend inside. While I woke this morning to snow outside my window, it’s nothing in comparison to what hit Ireland. I’ve been checking on Irish news sources, horrified over what I know is currently going down in that country. To say the Irish aren’t prepped for a lot of snow might be the understatement of the decade. What makes me saddest is the knowledge that the most vulnerable members of society are often the most isolated, which means out on the end of those snowy peninsulas where no one can get to right now there are elderly people without food, without heat, and in need of medical attention. People will die. And no one will give a damn.

I feel lucky to be here. To NOT be one of those people who are dying.

Only thirty pages left to read in my book. Plan on sitting down this afternoon and snuggling up with it. Ms. Polly Perfect in me is very happy and excited; she knows on Monday she’ll be able to turn that book in and clearly state she’s reading another. Gimme a gold star, teacher. I did good. Not that doing good is difficult in this situation. Ms. Perfect likes to read, so it’s no great stretch to find she’s gobbled up yet another book and wants more. Ms. Perfect is also happy with her pronunciation. She doesn’t like the fact she doesn’t know ALL the words, but she’s very happy that every time she opens her mouth native Dutch speakers compliment her on her language. Slow and steady. We’re getting there, Polly. Just be patient with me.

Have a bit of something on my desktop. Can’t really call it a story, tho I suppose that’s what it is. For me, it’s too real to call ‘a story’. It is my memories, my tale, told from my eyes and my perspective. I’m…doing my best to stay away from ’emotional’ language. There’s a bit of a disconnect going on with me; just state what happened. Don’t color it. Don’t say how much the pain hurt; pain is pain is pain. Everyone knows it hurts. Matter of fact statements can slap readers far harder than trying to color everything in. The pain went on. No one interfered, no one questioned it. Later, the child was given a spoonful of sugar that hid something bitter. That’s all you need. If you don’t read that and understand something is wrong in the child’s life then it’s you who has the problem. …Don’t know who I’m writing this for. The psychiatrist? Somewhere I think I can submit it? Who the fuck knows. I’m just writing it. That’s okay. I’m allowed to do that.

Here it is March and still nadda from the theater group regarding my script. I don’t think they’ll have time to do it. Maybe they won’t even have time to do another production this year; lots of foot dragging going on. No call for auditions. No discussion on how or what to do this autumn. And with April’s performance of last season’s play in Amsterdam, I just don’t see it happening. Plus…I really don’t want them to throw my idea together last minute. Give me – and my work – a bit more respect than that. No, you guys can’t do it if you can’t give yourselves enough time to learn the parts. No, I can’t give you audio clips if you don’t give me the time to create them. At the rate the group is currently crawling along, they won’t even hold auditions before May. Then it’ll be a couple of rehearsals before they take their summer holiday. In effect, they wouldn’t be able to really begin work on another play before September. I don’t want my first production to be so haphazard and sloppily put together. I spent a year crafting the story. Let’s give it a bit more effort than that. Both I and my work deserve it. And I hope, if the situation arises, that I’ll be able to state that clearly to the group. I deserve more than the dregs of your time. I’d prefer we put my script on hold ’til next year if that’s the way this year shakes out. Plus, I’ll need more than a month or two to do the sound effects. And I’m not gonna put myself or my bro under pressure to do everything in a short time because the group can’t pull it together in a timely manner. I’ll need to tell them that, because right now I think they think I could do the sound effects in a matter of weeks. Not that I blame them; if you don’t work with sound, you don’t get it. But I’ve had that before. What do you mean, you can’t put this all together in such a short time period? I could. I could just turn on my computer and do it. No, you couldn’t. You can’t do it, and that’s the point. If you think you can get this layered sound I want in just a day or two, you don’t know what you’re talking about. And you don’t know sound production.

Yeah. Speak up, Beeps. They gotta know that one ahead of time: I need time to pull that rabbit out of the hat. It ain’t magic; it’s hard work.

And let’s be clear: it’s hard work I’m willing to do for me. Not for you. Not for the theatre group.

Just for me.

The truth

It came as a demand: Send some pictures of yourself and your area. I’m sure your cousins would be interested. This is my uncle’s response to my two line ‘taking care of myself’ reply. Perhaps he didn’t mean it to sound like a demand. Perhaps that’s just his shorthand; I do it all the time, dropping words in sentences because of casual writing. But for a man so willing to fully type in his right-wing ideology, I can’t help but feel it is a precise reflection of his real, inner attitude. Demand, command, do not ask, and twist that bit of guilt in at the end to make sure people follow thru.

I deleted the message, and will not take any pictures for my family.

Yo! I am not some performing monkey here for your fucking entertainment. You can’t demand anything from me. And gee! Your attitude on those pictures I have posted has been quite cutting and negative.

😀 LOLOL! Perfect. Just realized I still have the pix from the premiere. I’ll send those. They show me, a gala event, and my friends. Let them chew on that for a bit. You didn’t bother to say anything at all, much less anything nice when I posted it publicly. Now, have it privately. I dare you, mother fuckers. I dare you to cut me down now. Go on; I know you want to do it.

Wondering about my wisdom here. I want to send those premiere pix. Make ’em squirm. But isn’t that just feeding the fire? And if the only reason I’m doing it is to test them, to see if they’ll react in the same negative way they’ve always reacted, aren’t I just allowing it to go on and on? Encouraging it, even. …Yeah. Gotta admit, that’s true. I want to pull their noses. I want to show them up, shut them up, portray for them exactly why they’re so wrong. …Fuck. That isn’t a healthy reaction.

Well. I’ll let it sit, and no doubt my head will work hard to forget it. Maybe I really will forget it…

Ah. Lovely. My computer alarm just went off, alerting me that tomorrow I have my surgery. Knew I really wouldn’t need the reminder, but I also know how I can let time get away from me and I sure as hell didn’t want to sit another 2 weeks waiting for another appointment and clamping down on my anxiety. So, ding. Yes, I know. Can’t stop thinking about it. Working hard to see past it. Moving my mind onto my language class on Monday, my upcoming appointment with the psychiatrist, the play performance in Amsterdam. There’s this big thing called LIFE that happens after my surgery. Remember that! I’m straddling it pretty well right now, but I’m not going to guarantee I won’t have a few moments of real panic tomorrow.

Did not get out yesterday. We’re in a big freeze, and my brother expressed real concern about me walking in the cold wind after sweating at the gym. I listened to him. Trying to listen to other people right now, especially if they’re telling me to take care of myself. They’re seeing something I’m not. Hold up! So far (knock on wood), I’ve remained flu and cold free this winter (was going to say I remained healthy but we all know that’s not true) and I want to stay that way. Plus…anxiety, anxiety, anxiety. Don’t feel I’ve handled that well, so I’m trying different things.

Have not gone back to my book on audio. The reader isn’t that good. A native speaker, yes. But a good speaker? No. And his delivery isn’t…magical. Good enough, but you can tell he doesn’t love the story. He’s just reading. Almost through with the book my teacher gave me. I’m learning more words. Nouns I didn’t know, verbs I didn’t know… It’s coloring in my world. I know the word for ‘so cold your teeth chatter’. I know the words for trembling, for nervousness, for worry. I see things get laid ‘aan’ or ‘bij’, people go ‘naar’ and ‘heen’ (sometimes ‘af’ and ‘toe’), birds ‘fladderen’ and dogs ‘blaften’, people have ‘benen’ and animals ‘poten’.

Give. me. more.

Plan on holding onto my audio book and just reading thru the text. It looks and sounds about my speed, and I’ll be done with the other book in a few days.

Truths I must remember to tell the psychiatrist. First, I’ve gotta mention the fact I can’t usually figure out what I’m feeling until after I write. My doc thought that was an interesting fact, and it’s not one I’ve talked about before. Second, I want to tell him I never loved my extended family. My immediate family, yes. I shared my day to day experiences with them. But I never understood why I was told to love the others. I saw my grandparents the most often, and that was two times a year at best. And it’s not like I sat down and talked with them often. The adults sat around and talked. I was expected to entertain myself. Aunts, uncles, and cousins were worse; I saw them even less. I didn’t feel any love for them. They were strangers. People I didn’t know. I grew up with ‘don’t trust strangers’, so this created a catch 22. These were strangers I was supposed to trust immediately, feel something for, even tho I knew nothing about them and spent no time with them. Throw in the fact that there were many huh? moments, times when I overheard something or saw something that wasn’t right or okay. But gloss it over. Tell them you love them. Say the words, you bad little girl!

…I never recognized my DNA family as my family. Never loved them like I was told I should. They were dangerous strangers, with sharp consequences for their children that looked pretty damned bad to me (and reinforced that ‘fairy tale’ lie about my own family).

That’s the truth.

The door now stands open

But…if I search it, will they come after me?

Oh, brava, Beeps! You wrote that well. The above is quickly becoming the number one question everyone asks after they read part one of my trilogy. Especially when I tell them I based the story on a real web site. lol! The idea that a cyber boogieman will come and get you is all my imagination, but I did it well enough in 30 pages that everyone’s asking this of me. I couldn’t be happier about it.

Saw S. I was right; we talked for hours. And yes, my secret came out and in typical S fashion, she followed up with a secret just as big on her side. We are two peas in a pod in many ways. Family issues, physical issues, self care and confidence issues… The one thing lacking is full comprehension on S’s side regarding the American lifestyle. She kept asking ‘But why would someone do that if they said they wanted children?’ It was difficult to explain the pervasiveness of that cold culture to her. Difficult to get across how individualistic and cut throat it really is, even amongst family. There’s a book for me to tackle some day: explaining American behavior to the Dutch. Or, as I’ve begun to call it in my head, ‘the American sickness’.

It’s such a blessing to be on this side of it. And as I look for the words to explain what happened to my Dutch friends and acquaintances, I’m finding my own answers.

S thinks I need to talk this out. Mostly because that’s what she’s done and it worked for her. I think not, but I heard her out. She feels I need to speak my truth a bit more, and a therapist is there for that. I tried explaining to her that I can rarely even sort out my own feelings before I write, so talking isn’t a great option for me. But…well, I didn’t write it out first, so naturally I couldn’t explain it.

Talk is cheap. I’ve had enough lip service and empty promises from other people. And enough lying to my face. Part of my conversation yesterday with S included a rehash of R, the actor who’s part was cut from the film. Ah. I was not alone in receiving a private message from him. Everyone got a few. In each, R hid a nugget of hate – a diss on someone else in the group. Apparently I can’t act at all, S is a bitch, the director is awful, the script was terrible, no one did a good job, etc. etc. S was really pissed off, and I can understand. They worked hard on that project. I checked on FB before coming out here. Most of the crew have unfriended R. Only myself, the director, and my other co-star remain on R’s friend list. Thought about un-friending him in a show of solidarity but I probably will just leave it. It didn’t escape my notice that this “actor” had only 26 friends and more professionally staged pix than anyone else I know. He’s trying real hard to be someone, and frankly, I pity him. Shouting all the time, demanding undue praise and attention, totally unaware of just how awful his performances are… He’s pitiable. Plus, he’s shown his true colors and my general rule of thumb is know your enemies. Better to keep an eye on him.

Flew off into orbit last night. Couldn’t help it; my long talk with S riled me up in many ways. I found it exciting to have a friendly exchange with someone who’s company I enjoy. I spoke my truth, and was heard. And I can’t help but have hope that yes, my film posse will get together to do my script. S is already hooked on the story, and I know the core group wants to work together again. Last night I saw a path possibility. One that’s a gamble, one that carries risks. But it’s also one I want to explore. For the first time in my life, I’m assessing this realistically. I’m looking at the long haul. My head didn’t shoot out to interviews post film, congratulating all of us and stroking my ego. I saw the work. The year or more of traveling to Den Haag every day to work on the story and script, be there for auditions, set up, lighting, talk, fun. The knowledge that ahead of me lies compromise and team work, allowing each person leeway enough to do their job.

Feels like I can do this. Like I can make the film happen. I’m very, very close. I already have a good support team, and people who will welcome my ideas (and honestly, the film feels closer to reality this morning than the production of the play). All I need to do now is wait for the right moment. Let the last semester hub-bub die down for them. Let S finish reading the script (she was on page 20). I know her; part of me feels I need to put her on my payroll as my private cheerleader. Once she’s set on something, she follows through.

My word du jour is flexibility. That’s the biggest sell my script has. I know the core story. I know what can be changed, modified, swapped around. I know what can be cut and what can be added. I can change gender, location, timing, language… You name it; the script can take it and survive and STILL be good.

Target: end of April. As students, they’ll be wrapping things up and prepping for their internships. NL has a week off for King’s Day. That’s my window. Send the script out as is to the director with full explanation. Get him the story before summer, so he can find a chance to read it. Their required internships last 6 months. Time enough to prep what we’d need to prep…

The door now stands open.