venus

you are fragile in your strength, i begin to grow in fear of shattering you, as if i might say the wrong thing and you’ll shut down like a venus fly trap, refusing to open again unless i can manage to say the right thing. to be the right person, to ask the right questions and give you the attention you want, but not too much attention, but not too little attention.

maybe you are a minefield instead, and i am doomed to constantly misstep, to miscalculate my trajectory and be blown away, be blown into pieces.

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winter’s fog

What is winter if not a time of death and dying, if not a time of hollowing out and burrowing into yourself?

And what is so wrong with that?

Bear with me here.

Why do we fear winter, why do we fear this opportunity to close ourselves off and take care of our wounds and our hearts? Living is moments of inhaling and exhaling. Winter is just one long exhale, before spring rolls in and we are allowed to breathe in the new air again.

3AM Nov 17th

It’s 3AM and you’re buying groceries.

You just so happened to fall in love with the girl who loved grocery stores, and in the fallout where the lines were drawn somehow she earned the right to each and every major franchise. The damn girl managed to leave her essence in every single one, and you can’t bear the risk of running into her and pretending everything is normal, dandy, peachy-keen. Somehow you manage to still look your best, though. Just in case.

It’s 3AM and you’re buying groceries.

Like usual your eyes sit on the back of your head, sensitive to every stare, from the few other poor souls who chose the same lifestyle.

You stare longer than you need to at the options for toilet paper, trying your best to forget how it was always your turn but she ended up buying them anyway.

It’s 3AM and you’re buying groceries, you remind yourself.

It has been 5 months and some change since you were together.

5 months and some change since you stopped picking up a sweat every time you were out together in public. She was never like that. It didn’t matter to her what others thought, her hand would always graze yours with a careless but deep love while yours twitched. Then again, she never sat in the closet for five years too long while the rest of the world she knew screamed ‘dyke’ at her. She touched you without a marred heart, without fear.

It’s 3AM and you’re buying groceries.

After a certain time the fluorescent light becomes a foreign entity and the place you’ve been existing in ceases to be and you’re back in your bedroom holding her as she breaks and falls apart before bed. Her love made you feel a way you never had before, never accepted before this moment. While you sat hidden away praying to change, God sent her into your path to show you He is not those who claim to speak His words. In her you found peace, serenity in falling apart, a feeling like maybe you’ve been whole all along, maybe you were never broken in the first place.

But things end. Things end, like they always do. Suddenly your house is no longer a shared home, no longer filled with her harmonious laughter or the musical silence. You’d always found silence to be a lovely thing with her, but now it’s deafening.

It’s 4:03AM and you’re still staring at the toilet paper.

You finally decide on a pack and move on, thinking you’re the only person in the world who choked up while standing in the grocery store in the middle of the night. Your lungs are ripped from your chest, and you feel the need to sit down, but you can’t—you’re in a grocery store.

gratitude

I have tried many things to protect me from my mental illness. I have tried the whole lot, which is bound to happen when you’ve been living with something for over a decade. It’s difficult for me to remain patient and kind when worried friends or acquaintances recommend something I’ve tried perhaps five years ago. But I do. Because I know it comes from a place of love and not a place of malice or disappointment.

There has been but one thing in this world that has saved me from myself and it has been writing. And the idea that someone could have possibly connected with my words, someone I don’t know nor have I ever spoken to, across the world or maybe around the corner, means more to me than I can express into words.

Thank you for your reviews. They mean the absolute world to me. Thank you for reading.

trying to warm up

Seems to me I am capable of writing only when it is not necessary. When I try my hardest to write something worthwhile, when I am motivated and ready to create something beautiful: nothing. I am stuck on the words, they are stiff in my throat, my hands refuse to write without shaking.

I am tapped out and dry, and I have absolutely and entirely nothing to rely on to help ease my pain.

I am stuck, stuck, stuck, in a moment, frozen in time, long since gone and long since lost.

Somehow something horrible has managed to happen (again, again, again) and yet there is nothing to be done.

I am stuck, stuck, stuck, in a moment, frozen in time, long since gone and long since lost. I cannot move forward, I cannot move backward, I can only repeat. The world is moving forth and it is moving forth without me. I am lost. I am a record skipping a beat.

motorcycle diaries

August 24th 5:35PM
Somewhere in California

 

Time doesn’t pass on the motorcycle. That’s the first thing I learned. I just had my first real ride, with all of our gear tagged onto the bike and I’ve never felt more alive in my life. It’s as if, I realized, I’ve spent this last year fast asleep and now suddenly I’m learning what it is to be awake again.

I’ve never heard silence before like I did on the mountains of California. I thought there was something wrong with my ears because it was almost deafening. I could practically hear my blood rushing and my heart thumped and told me I was alive, and what a good thing that was. It was entirely overwhelming and yet the most beautiful thing I’ve ever experienced.

August 25th 1:03AM
DEATH VALLEY

It’s hot as hell. It’s so hot. Oh god. It’s so hot. It’s the middle of the night and it’s so hot. I have nothing else to say. It’s so hot.

August 25th 9:45AM
DEATH VALLEY

It’s still hot but it’s honestly the greatest thing I’ve ever experienced. That’s a lie, I hate it and I can’t breathe but I still feel like this is amazing and I am so grateful to have experienced it.

I have never ever, not even in Napanee, seen stars the way I did last night. The whole sky was covered in them and I wish I hadn’t been so exhausted so that maybe I could have stared a little while longer. I feel like–and I’m sure you already know–but the one common theme throughout all of this has just been my sheer exhaustion. But it’s good.

I don’t know how else to explain it, and Andrew keeps asking if I’m alright because my exhaustion from the last couple of days reads on me so easily. I’m dirty, too. Sweaty and grimy and gross. And hot, like 46 degrees hot. But it’s all piling together into something I’m not able to put into words. Like my body needed to be beaten down. How sometimes getting a massage hurts only to feel yourself relax the hell out afterwards.

There was an interesting man who was the caretaker of the free campground. Your stereotypical, “I’ll tell you what,” kind yet incredibly talkative man. He’s got the grit, as they say. His name was Rocky. I don’t think it gets much better than that.

But there was someone else, too. A person there for similar reasons to me. To experience the heat. He was a real classic modern day hippie, and as we all sat there sipping ice cold Coke (me not saying much because the heat was killing me) I thought to myself how unbelievable it was that I was alive.

August 26th 12:21PM
Somewhere in Nevada

We’ve decided to negate the motorcycle. By which I mean, Andrew’s decided the motorcycle is done and we are to do our best to get our hands on a car.

Let me rewind.

Last night was the worst night on the bike. Exhaustion dragged on me, and we had only really been on the road for what felt like 15 minutes (it had been forty five). We had plans to
make it to a small town in Nevada–Fernley, specifically–where Andrew’s best friend’s parents lived. We would spend the night there. But the day wore on and we weren’t getting any closer. I was asking to stop every half hour, and we would stop for another forty five. Yet each time I would insist on cutting it shorter and shorter, on staying on the bike longer, to the point where Andrew began to clue in and guess when the pain in my knee was bad enough that we needed to stop.

My stubbornness persisted until Andrew decided to stop, just forty odd minutes out from our destination. We would find a motel, I would get proper rest, and we’d visit this couple in the morning for breakfast.

Do you know what’s big in small towns? Volleyball tournaments, apparently. Every single motel was booked, and the same for the next town over. Though Andrew said that was more for burning man than volleyball but I have my own ideas, honestly.

It turned out we would have to make the ride all the way out.

My entire body ached and screamed in protest. Against everything it wanted, against the look of concern in Andrew’s face, I threw my leg over (okay, with the help of Andrew) I hiked myself back on the bike.

I found myself thinking: “there is absolutely nothing enjoyable about this.” And yet as the bike took off, the sound deafening in my ears, my body relaxed despite the pain. This was how contradictory my existence was. I was petrified–yes, even after I had promised Andrew that I was no longer scared–and at night I was blind, which did not help my fear in the slightest. I was scared, yes, the kind that you only read about in books–the perpetual shaking and the onslaught of body pain from all the tension you’re placing on your body–and yet when exhaustion hit I found my eyes shutting.

My body was caught between two desires. My mind was desperate: let the fear continue, stay on guard, danger is around the corner. But my body knew better, my body had seen and experienced what the bike was like and had decided it was no different than anything else I’d ever done, if not a little bit painful. As much as my mind wanted to keep going on it’s tirade against my enjoyment of any things, exhaustion won over. I could no longer have the strength enough to be afraid.

As much as we both knew I could push through it, I had to be in BC in 3 day’s time. We had already lost out on Yosemite. We weren’t going to lose Banff. I had to relent, eventually. Truthfully I wasn’t given a choice. Between the three of them I easily felt like the one jerk who insisted on staying even though it was killing me. We would ride to Andrew’s home town and we would borrow his sister’s car.

August 27th 1:35PM
Somewhere in California

Good god I am glad to be rid of the motorcycle. It’s hotter in Andrew’s hometown than it was in Death Valley, which is apparently standard here. Death Valley is more consistently hot, but his hometown hits hotter temperatures. Literally I’m stopped at the side of the road in my sports bra and my pants around my ankles (I wear shorts underneath) and I feel like my skin is on fire.

Last night got late and we still had several hours (okay, like 1 and a half) until we would get to his place. So we stopped at a bonafide saloon in the mountains and befriended some people who let us stay at their cabin for free, since the motel was out of my budget by about 100$ Canadian.

It was so cool. They were so wasted and in the morning they were so much cooler, as if that was possible. Free board and breakfast? Remind me to send you the videos of the broom that would not fall.

I went to a volcano today. Well, I tried. Depression won. I couldn’t make it up the mountain which is weird because I hike quite often when I travel, and I have been this trip. I’m so disappointed in myself and Andrew was so excited for me to see it since it’s his favourite place. So just keep in mind I wrote the postcard first and therefore lied to you within it.

I honestly still feel okay. Exhaustion drags me but the trip is almost over and I feel ready to be home. I feel old and new and different yet the same. I feel like I have finally begun to escape the valley.

I’m coming home in more ways than one.