Day 232: My Inner Bitch

A rose from my front yard that blossomed in late September.

I woke up this morning and came to the conclusion that alongside the yoke-like phlegm I’ve been coughing up for three-plus weeks that I’ve also hacked up some major  baggage.

I woke up thinking: I want to find my inner bitch.

Which is so unlike me, as I don’t even like to say the word Bitch, unless teasing my dog, and to type bitch (bitch, bitch, bitch), well that’s just plain out of character!

Much of the thoughts of finding my inner bitch erupted from my dreams last night, the repetitive type of nightmare where I face a parental figure or face a professor and act cowardly and then rage. Seems my inner bitch has found her way into my dream state. Still no sight of her out in this world, though.

Now my mother would likely claim that my inner bitch came out in the fall of 1981, but I would have to disagree. True, at the time I was a very angry teenager, but I raged because I’d held so much inside for so long that with the help of hormones I  just plain exploded…and screamed, and threatened to runaway from home, and barricaded myself in my room….

Fact is, up to that point in my years, and after that point too, I hadn’t really been dealt the best childhood experience; and I had a right (as I see it) and need (to not implode) to be a bit of a bitch. Plus, my teen-bitchiness was so very short-lived—doused out by guilt-laden lectures, scolding, and insults, and the move to the east coast. I was in the bitch zone three months, tops.

That is honestly about the only time Bitchy Me ever surfaced. That and when my boyfriend of several years had a pregnant teenage mistress that showed up at his apartment door.  But I felt guilty after I screamed in shock and hit him with my open hand in the chest. So not sure if that counts.

And I had another bitchy moment, I suppose, when a best friend called me (again) in the early hours of the morning to tell me her much-older-than-her, drunkard and big time loser of a boyfriend had once again abandoned her. I’d had enough, and told her to get some help, and that I could no longer support her in regards to her relationship with said jerk. I was kind of mean, I guess. We were never close again, after that. Boundary setting verses Bitch—seems to be a fine line.

Sometimes I think I might be lacking the bitch gene. Sure, certainly at moments I  look like a bitch, but that’s generally my lack of recognizing and controlling my facial expressions. I could be thinking intently about dark chocolate, and my intense facial expression could be mistaken for bitch. It’s just the way my face is made; it contorts and twists so that most onlookers haven’t a clue to what I’m truly feeling or thinking. That’s why pasted-on-smile helps, often, when dealing with outsiders.

You can ask my husband. I’m not a bitch. I really am not. Sure, I have a dry and sometimes biting wit (blame it on my intelligence) and sure I get frustrated like all human folk, but my degree of anger and expression of my anger is liken to the temperament of a well nurtured and cuddled kitten.

My anger zone generally consists of rolling of the eyes, a sigh, and raising my voice slightly; and if you’re my husband, a mini-lecture about my need to express my emotions and be accepted as a human being with feelings. (That’s what happens when you marry a man like Spock from Star Trek.)

When my anger climaxes, I retire to my bedroom to mope, fret, and catastrophize the situation. Generally then, I am forlorn, curse my circumstance, and want to expel everyone from my life so I can die in isolation.  Where anger goes, who knows. I seem to skip over that square in the hopscotch of emotions. I have no trouble leaping into the hopscotch square of self-pity and depression, but anger, it’s like the chalk in the square has been erased, and anger just doesn’t exist. Even if I purposely jump two-footed into the anger box and try to feel rage, it’s very much lacking in luster and flame, kind of a dull spark of nothing.

I gather, part of this anger repression comes from the times I was often guilted out of my emotions.

“Be thankful for what you have.” “I do my best.” “Things could always be worse.” “Count your blessings.” We’re all common phrases in my youth, bombarding me each and every time I showed the slightest indication of sadness or upset. I grew up believing that my feelings were wrong and out of proportion. That I was over reacting and ungrateful.

Missing from my world were words like: “I’m sorry.”  “It will be okay.”  “That must be so tough and hard on you.”  “I can’t imagine.”  “Let me hold you.”  “I am here for you.” Missing so much, that as I grew older and heard those loving statements, I didn’t know what to feel, and as a result would start to cry uncontrollably.

If I dared to feel anger, I was to blame for not being appreciative, understanding, patient, or forgiving.

So much of my energy was spent stuffing emotions to appease.  I learned to evaluate others’ expressions and adapt my own body language to survive. If I could figure out what others wanted, I could feasibly avoid deflating remarks. If I acted happy and carefree, I was more likely to be praised. My happy expressions were seen and acknowledged; and whether genuinely expressing myself or not, when I appeared happy, at least I wasn’t invisible or wrong.

Anger, I gather, if anger ever existed, got lost in the shuffle of pretending. I was the good girl. The sweet girl. The kind, the giving, the loving. I was unbreakable, brave, and dependable. I was everything I could be to make another happy.

Interestingly, this year, during the month of May, I had a major breakthrough physically, energetically, emotionally, and spiritually. Starting in the late spring, I felt transported back in time to around the age of thirteen, when all feelings of love-sick, passion, creation, freedom, strong will, and justice were erupting.

Strangely enough, I first had bronchitis (due to living in a damp ocean town with mold and in a house with smokers) when I was a teenager and haven’t had bronchitis since. Until now. I seem to be revisiting my later youth on multiple levels, including visiting bronchitis.

Lately, I feel as if there is this sticky residue inside of me.

It’s been said 2012 is a year of purging out the “negative” emotions and coming to terms with all the garbage inside (I paraphrase with much liberty.)

Apparently, my bronchitis is symbolic of all the residue still located at my heart and throat center, where my ability to love and express my true self is located. I’m purging…going on week four now of purging (bronchitis).  And still stuff is coming up.

Today I am acknowledging some current realities. I am delving into the residue and coughing up the phlegm of the past. I am rediscovering that there are people in my life that I simply don’t like. As hard as I try, I don’t like them. I don’t like their behavior, their choices, their self-focus, their belief that their view is the right view, their tendency to think the world revolves around them, their ability to blame others, the anger they harvest and spew, their arrogance and their ignorance, and especially their lack of self-awareness and self-accountability.

I’m wondering if it’s not time to let my inner bitch blossom, if only for a bit, long enough to mop up the remains, to stand up and shout: Enough! Enough already!

Day 231: Temporary

(This is a continuation from yesterday’s post: Day 230 Tornado )

From the backseat of a dented sedan, amongst a cluttering of mismatched suitcases, I drew in my breath through my nostrils and lowered my head in doleful resignation. There, outside my car window atop a plateau, slept a muddy-brown structure—most of its windows draped in faded tangerine sheets.

“There it is,” Ben said, curling his lips into a satisfied grin and tapping his hands on the steering wheel to the beat of the song Sexual Healing.

The car engine stopped.  The music stopped.  And Ben started.  “Just take a look,” he said with an easy stroke to Mother’s sleeveless shoulder.  “It’s just like I told you. Look!”

Glancing forward and to the left a bit, I followed Ben’s rounded back up, and then across and down the length of his burly arm to his stubby finger which pointed through the window to a pathetic dwelling; which alas, to my deep disappointment, appeared to be the worst house on the best street in town.  Not only was the house in desperate need of paint and the yard weeping with neglect, but the mailbox itself was a rusted clump of sadness.  My soon to be new home, this place I would slumber and eat, shower and dress, and partake in life in general, was ironically misplaced, set out in front of the world in its worst garment and accessories.

Knowing what to do, almost instinctively, I narrowed my eyes into a half-squint and scanned the surface alternating the image of the house from blurry to clear and back again to blurry.  I’d looked at my reflection in the mirror in the same way, after discovering by blurring my reverse-self I was momentarily able to erase all visible flaws.

 

The rest is in the book 🙂

 

Day 230: Tornado

Tornado

One midday, beneath the shade of a leaning cypress tree, after the late-spring sea fog had lifted, I stared out to the crashing waves with a grave impassivity.  In the past years, I’d grown deeply attached to the ocean side town. I believed in a sense we were one, the town and I, joined together in the same way the redwood trees unite their roots underground.

Aggrieved and spiraling with emotions like a blender on high-speed, I replayed Mother’s words, her promises; there would be new bedroom furniture and a private school, and a nice house.  I could wear a school uniform like Jane.

Mother had strolled into my room twenty-minutes earlier with a confident air and found me absorbed in my sticker collection book, categorizing each sticker by theme.  I was on the butterfly page. There were 33 butterflies—one more butterfly than fairies.  Mother had a faraway look, a deep and distant gaze that made me think she was traveling with the angels in the sky or the dolphins in the sea.  I knew innately from all my years with Mother that she was happy; and so I also knew she wasn’t going to tell me her boyfriend Ben was finally leaving; still, I held onto the hope, even though all the signs pointed in the opposite direction.

 

The rest is in the book 🙂

 

Day 229: Phlegm in a Cup and Love

Now as much as I love, love, love someone else doing the dishes and fretting about dinner, the trade-off of viral bronchitis—so not worth it!

Seems some nasty bug is circulating the state, well at least this town. Watch out for the attack. Not fun in the least.

Picture red plastic cup marked “phlegm” and me in blue medical mask, and endless hacking. Fever seems to have FINALLY subsided; at least I no longer ache in places I didn’t know existed. And the paranoid thoughts of being the very first person to die of the new viral outbreak, set to kill 10% of the population, have stopped. At least for the most part.

Still I’m left rib-bruised, out of breath, and wondering what happened during the month of September, beyond what I learned from season eight of Grey’s Anatomy and seasons one through eight (yes, eight seasons) of Everybody Loves Raymond.

The good news is I’m in love! Yes. I am. His name is Robert.

He is a fictional character on the show Everybody Loves Raymond, a very tall, insecure Italian who is just one giant adorable bear. Though I realize the episodes are over a decade old (and therefore Robert is in his fifties now), and that Robert is fictional, and thusly doesn’t really exist, I am in love nonetheless. He’s more attainable than the young wealthy god-like creature in the Shades of Grey series anyhow.

When I was having fever dreams, during the early stages of my illness, my dreams were related to the fictional character Robert, (or to dimensional time travel during the era of futuristic war-ridden earth). I didn’t dream of Robert. I dreamt his dreams. Yes, indeed, in my fever-state I believed I was Robert. After over 100 episodes I imagine our minds had molded together in someway. As Robert, I dreamt as Robert, and had dreams about his circumstances that befell him while on the show. Yes, I had fictional character anxiety dreams. Who would have thought that was even possible?

Dreaming I was Robert was far better than the jumping from one dimension to the next dimension dreams, to recruit and “save” people who would make good warriors back on earth for the alien battle we’d soon be fighting. There was a sophisticated screening mechanism for determining what individuals were suitable to be pretty much kidnapped from their dimension and brought back to ours. Basically, if your life sucked, and probably would continue to suck, or lead to early death, or harm to others, we stole you. Nice mind I have. Don’t you think?

So that’s what I do when I’m sick: Watch lots of television, obsess about all the feasible ways of expiring, kidnap people in other dimensions, and fall in love with fictional characters. Probably not too far off the mainstream. That and write poetry—when the head’s not pounding and I’m not catching phlegm in a cup.

~~~~~

Love Leaves

I shall not tread

Into thy dark night

A cornucopia of lost cause

Landscape stripped barren

By voice of horned trumpet

Melody suffocated by circumstance

Mind bled out by tourniquet expired

Whistle blown at ruptured drum

Bleakness wrapped as toy for infant

Revealed broken, rusted blade

When torn

Open, his tangled mane made web of longing

Prepped and fondued to tempt desire

Lion’s thirst, a churning ache

Thick swallowed whole

Harbored

A chest plate of veins, pulsing blue

Tulips turned stone

Roots in mire

Crushed sweet

Gone

Sour echo vines and chokes

Stiffens in eradication

Layers thick upon cake of earth

Stomped brittle leaves remain

Rocked forth

In cradle of you

~ Sam Craft, Sept. 2012

~~~~~

 

Love Enters

Love enters

Starlit glow aflame

Beauty infinite

Whispers honey

Recognition formed

Beyond womb

Of mother’s promise

As feather set upon chariot wind

I move within your substance

The sound of songbirds assembles

Lullaby of cherubs

And silence

He knows not

How to exist

When I am filled

With your beckoning

~ Sam Craft, Sept 2012

 

 

And this video Explains Exactly How I felt during my illness

Day 228: When Battling Dragons

(This sums up my last couple weeks….)

The King he coughed, and then hoarsely spout, “I’ve had quite the battle, of this no doubt.” He hovered there, in chamber room’s sheets, his face pale white, despite the heat. He stretched his neck, and cracked his knuckles, and adjusted his bedclothes with a string-like buckle.

I sat in the corner, unseen but there, my ears alert, my mind aware. I’d heard the story of Dragon V and how Noble King had battled thee. But now to see King living still, after all the tales, I shook with chill. And wondered too, if Dragon had left, or stood behind curtains with fiery breath.

I sneezed aloud, and heart sank low, would Dragon appear, and make me his foe?

“God Bless You, lad,” the King did say, and turned down his covers to reveal a tray, of turnips and broth, and chicken legs full, and desserts untouched, by this noble who ruled. “Can’t eat them; no want. Help yourself if you wish. Can’t even stand to look at the dish.” He adjusted his pillow, then fanned his full face, coughed up some more, before finding his place.

“Now, where was I?” he mumbled, his lips parched and dry, his skin lacking luster, the red in his eyes.

“Oh, yes, fine lad, listen, while I whisper a word, about the fierce Dragon, no doubt that you’ve heard.

I call him Dragon V, the v stands for venom;

his poison is hot, from the land of fierce demons.

At first Dragon whispers, and the fire is null,

still knight’s eyes gather tears, and do slightly swell.

But then Dragon breathes, and his flame rises swift,

and ghost enters the ears, and causes a rift.

Then there is burning, and acute subtle itch,

until comes the night, and ears ooze and they twitch.

This pain is rather meager, simple indeed,

compared to where Dragon next turns to feed.

He enters the head, and burns up so hot,

that knight cannot tell boot from his pot.

The Dragon’s heat strong, climbs fierce and then falls,

leaving King in his bedclothes all soaked in a ball.

Bed covers too, are wet with foul rain,

which must be the body weeping in pain.

This happens trice, the heat pattern clear,

three moons pass, with muddled thought and wetness severe,

Next, he takes hold, this Dragon mad,

and pounds at the whole head with his strong iron clad.

Dragon releases, after throb-filled days,

only to take harbor, in the lungs straight away.

Now comes the spit, the cough and the hack,

that starts at the ribs and stabs behind back.

Gasping and wheezing are familiar sounds now,

bringing yellow-yoke present, sunrise from sundown.

This lasts the longest, the spitting of yoke,

the catching of breath that resembles a choke.

So withered and wrung out, so weathered and worn,

tis the greatest of battles, of this I have sworn.”

 

The king took a breath then, and I could hear what he meant: How the Dragon still lived, for King’s breath was still spent.

I gathered my notary, my reeds and my ink, and thanked the King properly, by offering drink.

I sneezed then again, my face turning blue, I’d swallowed the dragon, of this I now knew.

The King gulped and slathered, his beard getting wet, and looked me all over, with green eyes sternly set.

“Now son,” he said, warmly, his grin rather tart, “There’s something to mention, before you depart.

Your sneeze, tis no warning, no bell to alarm; the sneeze will bring nothing to cause you V’s harm.”

He shook his head proudly, then spit yoke in his pot, fingered his mustache and made the ends taut.

He held out a finger, and gave it a whirl, after giving his mustache, one last final twirl.

He sat up very proud, his eyes starting to glisten, he beckoned me closer, and said, “Now, you listen!”

You scribe down my words, what I know to stand true: When battling dragons, a King never achoos!”

~~~~~

In this tale, I am the King and this is my Dragon V. Now on Day 16 of the battle. And I still haven’t sneezed!

Day 227: Independent Thought

Happy Me….before I got super sick!!! Two weeks ago. Seems like months ago. Still recovering. Hope to be back to self super soon.

Independent Thought

There are too many rules inside this head, of what to love and what to dread,

Of whom to trust, and whom to fear, of when to speak and when to steer,

Away from one and towards another, and follow instead the words of a brother,

Where rests this inner truth that’s real, within spoon-fed morsels of how to feel,

In mountains high of indoctrinated texts and rivers wide of created sects,

Of where to stand, for what, and why, of when to grin and when to cry,

To find the answers, when none exist, to hear their echoes, when all just twists,

This tattered net, transitioning mesh, idealization of living flesh,

Curses at unwanted things, traps illusion in greed’s spindly strings,

Dark and nettled, bent to shape, the landscaped thoughts, thusly raped,

Of truth that breathes within the self, of passion, of love, of grace and stealth,

What kinship have thee, what ancestors whole, where is character bred, in life’s foothold,

Must I reap what others sow, and follow through where they too go,

Oh what of  this seared misplaced soul, unraveled at seams from tellings told,

Draped and ripened in merriment, branded with steamed discontent,

Belly full,  treasures vast,  spirit bled for youthful gifts,

A charade, half-finished, that never ends, and claims the light of one again,

A painted canvas of needy spades, digging up foundation that was never made.

~ Samantha Craft, September 2012

Day 226: Said Sadly, Sam

I cannot blog for you tonight, said sadly, Sam, as she sat upright

To avoid the mucus inside her chest, that was springing forward like a pest

Again the sound from hacking host, dislodging phlegm from coast to coast

As far as spit and spew can fall, she’s come up first in fame of hall

Coughing trophy at thy feet, blue ribbon prize for winner to tweet

Perhaps YouTube the latest sounds, the whooping bird that left the grounds

I cannot blog for you at all, said sadly, Sam, curled into ball

Tummy hurts from all the pills, low-grade fever has trumped the chills

And everywhere I turn to see, I spy a mess staring back at me

Laundry piles and dust bunnies dance, and cobwebs laugh at circumstance

I’m forced to sit, and sit and be, to soak up liquids and drown in me

Who shall pull the plug and drain, the constant woes and annoying pain

Especially the voice inside the head, that cries and barks: Go back to BED!

~ Sam Craft, 2012

Day 225: Merry Go Round Girl

A MERRY GO ROUND GIRL

A merry-go-round girl am I

On animals all shape and size

I ride them fast, and swift, and strong

To see if all my rights make wrong

I can’t do this or that, or fail

And if I fall, I’m sure to sail

Straight to the end, where line starts true

Where I am made to stand in blue

Of misery and broken dream

And power engines’ streaming wings

That flutter by and carry fast

Joy’s images in bubble vast

A place within the nectar sweet

Where clouds were naught but candy treat

Before removed with cherished youth

And hope beguiled with jagged truths

Of monsters real and panics proud

Of ivory boards that scourged and gouged

How staggered they, in daring ways

That preach to hide and never play

To tempt while striking joust of fear

And tell thee when I bleed in tear

I’m weak and blind, forgiven not

I’m injury unpardoned, fought

How dare they mold me into this

Some partner for their wretched dish

For I am rider, wild and free

With legs spread straight and hair in breeze

Upon a spirit painted old

Chipped and powdered with jester’s gold

So ride I will, with song, with rein

And laugh and laugh at silly games

*

By Samantha Craft, September 2012