Archive for the ‘Crazy’ Category

Holding Back

Knowing yourself deeply is both a blessing and a curse.

I allow myself to read as much as I can and because of this I live much of life between pages, but this is the only indulgence I can allow.

If I were to allow myself to drink or do drugs, I’d be an addict. If I were to allow myself to take down the walls of my sadistic side, I’d scare myself and my partner. If I allowed myself to indulge my emotions, I’d laugh like a wild person and I’d cry until I dried up. If I loved to the fullest extent of my heart it would smother the ones I adore. If I spoke without sensor my thoughts would shock both liberal and conservative, judgemental and accepting.

I often feel like I’m an addict without an addiction, but only because I don’t relax. I keep a tight control wherever I’m able.

There’s a strong urge and desire to overindulge in life; to bite into existence until I draw blood. It overflows in a way I can’t explain and in moments I think the dam may burst I jump into a book; into a different existence, until I’m in control again. I do this for myself and for others.

I have always overwhelmed people. I’ve been labeled as “too much” and “too (insert adjective)” most of my life.

Truly; they have no idea.

What you see is a pond. What you don’t see is the width and depth of an ocean.

Be glad I hold back the tidal wave. Be glad I don’t relax and “just be.” The tsunami of me would leave you shocked, blinded, beaten, and breathless.

To Write Love On Her Arms

I just finished a movie called To Write Love on Her Arms and I have to tell you it touched me more than almost any movie I can remember.

Let me start by saying I do not struggle with drug or alcohol addiction. I am not bi-polar. I am not a cutter. I am not suicidal.

I am also not religious and for me this was not a story about any god or religion.

What I am is a person who battles depression and anxiety. I am a person who has struggled in life, at times, to find a reason for waking up another day. I am a person who has felt lost within herself. I am a person who believes in hope. I am a person who KNOWS beyond a shadow of a doubt, that I NEED other people in my life for me to be okay. No matter what anyone believes about themselves, we all do.


To Write Love On Her Arms is the true story of a young lady named Renee Yohe. It all started with a blog post by her friend Jamie who, after meeting her and helping her detox, found her story to be encouraging. He wasn’t encouraged because she had already triumphed, but because she was damaged yet still not broken. She was beyond help in the eyes of most of the world but surrounded by a small group of people who loved her enough to help her put her life back together; even if they had to keep gluing the shards of her hope over and over again.

Sometimes that’s all you need in life; that person or those persons who stick. The ones who see your scars, visible or not, self-inflicted or not, and don’t flinch. The ones who love you when you feel unlovable. The ones who hope for you when you feel hopeless. The ones who see you plain as day when you feel completely lost. Everyone needs those people. EVERYONE.

There have been days when the war being waged in me felt like it could rip me to shreds. I can only thank my own fear of being controlled, by persons or substances, that I didn’t use drugs and alcohol to escape to some place away from myself.

Renee’s story reminded me just how much I depend on my people. My best friend, my internet friends, and my chosen family are all intricate stitches in the fabric of my being. When my edges are frayed I just turn to any one of them and their kindness and love and acceptance weaves the hope back in until I’m whole again. For me; that love and that hope are my religion, my higher power. I turn to these things like a flower turns it’s face to the sun.


Some might look upon this young woman’s face and wonder how could a young life be so bad or so difficult that addiction and pain feel better than merely existing. But I get it. Sometimes just waking up to exist another day is the monster beneath the bed, the unknown thing you fear the most. Perhaps it’s true that “it’s never as bad as you imagine it will be,” but then again maybe that’s the lie we tell ourselves to get out of the bed and step foot in front of the beast waiting to devour us. Until it’s your bed, your feet, your monster, you don’t know for sure.

For many of us the thing that gets us past the monster, the fear, is the person or persons waiting outside the door for us. Our children, our spouses, our families, and our true friends give us the courage to hope that our exposed limb won’t be snatched. Not today at least. Trying to find that courage when there’s no one waiting on the other side of your fear, whose mere existence in your life is the reward for getting there, is damn near impossible. was founded by Jamie after the overwhelming response to Renee’s story showed him just how many people were in desperate need of someone in their corner. Because honestly the only thing worse than hating yourself, hurting yourself, being afraid, and suffering from mental illness of any kind is doing it all alone. There’s enough people on this big ball we all live on that no one should have to do it all alone.

My hope is that even just one of you will read or watch Renee’s story, now that I’ve told you about it, and you will think of someone who needs to know they aren’t alone in life, and you will SHOW them you are there for them; you will find time in your busy life to help someone hold their pieces together.

And if you are a person who needs to connect to someone who sees you through your own fog; who needs someone to hand you the hope and love you can’t quite grasp on your own; who needs someone to hold the pieces in place as you glue them back together for maybe the hundredth time; who needs a reason to face the monsters that lurk around the corners and behind your eyes…I beg of you…reach out.

I promise you that someone doesn’t have to have walked in your shoes to be exactly who you need. They only need to be let inside your walls. No one can be your person if you don’t allow them to be. Surround yourself with people who want to be there for you and then let them.

Have hope. Be brave. As Renee said, “The stars are always there but we miss them in the dirt and clouds. We miss them in the storms. Tell them to remember hope. We have hope.”

See the blog post that started the To Write Love On Her Arms movement here:


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The Rhythms of Life

As far back as my memories go I remember looking for rhythms, connections, lists, boxes and even equations that put things into a perspective that allows for my understanding of it.  There’s a rhythm to almost everything we do or can expect as an outcome from something we do.  I remember the most minute details from the most obscure happenings because of the connections they immediately made in my head. I’ve put everything in one list or another or in a box of some kind so that I know where to find it in my brain and where it should be in my life. I’m speaking figuratively of course. People who know me would tell you I’m completely disorganized in my outward life. It’s the world in my head that exists in this manner of organized craziness.

In times of major chaos in my life I’ve turned to mathematic breakdowns of the events surrounding me down to the most irrelevant details. (e.g. I can tell you the percentage of people who were wearing a watch in my first ever group therapy session at the age of 18.)  I find these things comforting. The rhythms and mathematics don’t change. You can rely on them to remain undaunted by a bad day or change of heart or some form of emotional upheaval. Math is undeniably consistent. One plus one will always equal 2. 4/4 time will always be four beats per measure, from Mozart to Katy Perry to John Lennon.

Once a connection is made it is unbreakable. That connection is always there, even if you don’t wish it to be so. Once you love her she will always be someone you love(d). Once you meet him you will always have met him. Once your heart is broken it will always know what it is to be broken. Once you share your first dance they will always be the one who you first danced with. Once you hear a song and it makes you weep a place in your mind will always know that twinge of sadness when it hears those notes and lyrics. For me these connections also cause me to remember things I have no need to remember. I can tell you who most celebrities have worked with, lived with, married and divorced from and what performances of theirs I liked most. I can connect one author to another simply by a phrase repeated by one that I read by the other months or years prior. Words are possibly the strongest of connections for me. Once it’s said or written that connection is also never to be undone. Words are explosively powerful things, but more on that subject another time.

I suppose from this perspective I can adequately say that I find security in consistency.

The boxes in my mind come in to play when I need to sort through anything in my life, come to a new understanding of something or figure out how something went askew. I mentally unpack a box to see if what I believed to be one thing is really in that box of similar ideas or objects or if I need to fit it in to a different box. Everything has a box. People, places, times, memories, relationships, knowledge I have, knowledge I wish to have and the biggest box holds the contents of the life I dream to have some day. I’ve rearranged this box numerous times and tossed some contents out while adding others. In this case I suppose we all do. If I could give you a visualization of the boxes that support and hold the things I have tried to figure out in my life you might say I am a hoarder.

Lists. The all important lists. These exist everywhere in my world. They are both real and unreal. Necessary and unnecessary. Important and not. Accurate and absolutely not. Many times they contain the handbook of “life as I see it.”  This includes: Lists of rules; rules I have for myself, rules others have put upon me, rules I put on others. Lists of hopes; Hopes for the ones I love, hopes for myself, hopes for day-to-day life, hopes for the future. Lists of needs; needs that must be met for myself by myself, needs that I need met by others, other’s needs I can meet and ones I cannot no matter how hard I try. And so on and so on.

It’s these things I have mentioned that keep a smoother rhythm in my life but, at the same time, also cause it to be so incredibly scattered. My mind seems to work like a processor. I evaluate every action, word, sound, response and feeling at every moment of everyday and place them into their correct location or at least the location that makes sense to me. Like a processor I’m considering these dozens of things at once at all times. Unlike a processor it overwhelms me to a point that I feel I must block out all thought by any means. For me this is not as easy as it is for some I have encountered as I do not do drugs of any kind nor do I find much pleasure in drinking very much or very often. I block out my thoughts with other people’s thoughts, as in books, movies and music. Many times I’m processing so many things I just need to talk and let them out, yet at the same time my words aren’t as fast as my brain and I start talking about one thing and five completely separate ideas later I have no idea what it was I had started talking about in the first place.

And there you have it; the disorderly organization of my messy mind. The rhythm and flow of life as I know it.

Welcome to my world.

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