Blues Man

Back when I was in my early twenties, I moved out to Vancouver from Saskatoon. The chaps that I lived with had a shitty, roach and mouse infested studio/house in the infamous downtown eastside. It was an incredible eye opener for sheltered little me. I went from my heart bleeding with pity at the sight of the homeless and junkies around me to being able to step over a sleeping drunk and more than once yelling “Go piss on someone else’s doorstep!” Good times.

Not by design, I became a hairdresser in the fancy, wealthy part of town. (For clarity, I took my training and was quite good. I just never wanted to do it. Some jobs we fall into.) Twice a day, I had culture shock. I’d get dressed up and go catch my  bus. Inevitably, some dirtbag would cruise me and ask me if I “wanted to go for a beer.” I’d lose my shit and respond with a shrill “No, asshole. It’s 7:30 in the morning and I’m on my way to work. This is a bus stop. I smell like hope and beauty and if I was a hooker, you couldn’t afford me. Now fuck off, twatsmack, before I put one of my heels through your eye.” Okay, not really. I’d normally say “Um, not a Ho, friend. Have a nice day and good luck with everything.” Respect went further than aggression in terms of safety. It was still sort of insulting, though.

As I was getting ready one morning, I walked into the main part of the house and smelled the most heinous, throat-closing, nose-leaping-off-your-face-to-escape odour. It hit me like a wall and I called out “Jesus Christ!” (Why do we call him when something is yucky? FYI, he didn’t show up to save my olfactory glands.) I couldn’t figure out what had been horrifically killed by shit, wrapped in stinky cheese and left to rot around the house. As I gagged over my hand, I walked up to the window and peeked out. And there, on my step, leaning against my door, was a very overweight and smelly man eating his breakfast.

I knew that the restaurant down the street would sell their leftovers the next morning for a couple of bucks to the bums. I knew he likely needed the meal. I also knew that he was sitting in front of the only viable way out of the house and that my bus was coming in 15 minutes. Fuckity, fuck, fuck, fuck. Now what?

I sucked up my courage and thought, “To hell with it.” I knocked on the door, yelled “Coming out!” and opened the door. He leapt to his feet, his take-out in his hand and with a deep Southern drawl said “Oh! So sorry, Mam. So sorry!”

I locked the door and as he was walking away, I called him back. I said “Hey! It’s okay. Sit  down and finish your breakfast. I wouldn’t have interrupted you but I have to go to work.” He came back and yes, he was as smelly as you think. “Aw thanks, Lady! Where you work? Where your man at? I hear them fellas playing music here sometimes. I write some songs! I got some fine Blues songs I can sell to your friends.” “I’ll let them know. Gotta go catch my bus.” “Y’all shore is pretty. And you smell so good.” “Um, thanks. See ya.” “Where you work at? I come visit you sometime.” “Um, well, I do hair and it’s across the bridge so…” “Oh! You do the Gerry Curl? Like Little Richard? I’d like that on myself!” “Well, no, I’m not too good at black hair but I’ll ask around.” “Okay, Lady, y’all have a good day. I hope your man takes good care o’you. Tell him I said to!” And he sat down to finish his meal and I caught my bus.

A couple of months later, in the pouring, pissing Vancouver winter rain, I saw him downtown. I’ve never seen such a miserable looking human being in my life. He approached me reluctantly and asked for some money. I asked him how much he needed for the shelter and he told me ten more dollars. I gave him fifteen (which he didn’t want to take), and told him to get over there before it was full for the night. He barely met my eye as he said thank you. He then said, with his head sheepishly down, that if I ever needed some “luvin” that I could come and find him anytime. I thanked him with a polite no.

Shortly after that, I saw him once more. He was with some people who were already half dead from drugs. It made me sad. He never did come to sell us a song. And all I wish is that I could remember his name.

The Rape Monkeys

Hoo boy.

I’ve been watching the U.S. presidential campaigning with great interest, mostly because I am stunned at some of the things the Republican candidates are saying. I truly have not heard so much stupid  said in a few short weeks, ever. But one thing is sticking in my craw, oh yes. To the point where every time I hear it mentioned, the GACK-choke sound issues out of me so loudly me family turns and stares.

What in the blue fuck is with all the Rape talk? Yes, I am capitalizing it, as I believe it is a word that needs due accord and is not to be tossed about willy-nilly as has been of late.

I’ve read the term “Rape easy”, I’ve heard that you won’t get pregnant from “forcible Rape” and that “pregnancy resulting from Rape is the will of god” or some such. Wow. I’ve learned a lot.

I get the idea that some people vote according to their religious views. Trust me, as a Canadian I know we have a government that is filled to overflow with the evangelist christian right and they are doggedly trying to change our abortion laws as we speak. However, thus far, they haven’t gotten into the whole soft pedalling of the Rape issue. I feel that’s what they are doing in the Republican campaign in the U.S.

As someone who has been Raped and narrowly escaped two other Rapes, I must protest. As someone who knows several women that have been Raped, I must protest. (I’m not going to get into the birth control and abortion issue as I believe that is your personal choice as a woman or a man. For the record, that’s called having Rights. Know them.)

I don’t care which way you spin it Rape is ALWAYS an act of violence. ALWAYS. There is nothing else to be said about it. EVER. As a woman, it find it insulting that it’s being used as just some noun or verb, without any emotion put behind it. As a person, I feel that way.

Rape is awful, dehumanizing and should never be used to attend to a political or religious agenda. Not anywhere, not ever.

I’m also insulted by the thinking of these men. That they truly believe that the “men” they are campaigning to will see things the same way. In my circle of friends and family, at least 50% are male and I going to go with the safe bet that 99% of them don’t espouse the notion that Rape is just something that happens sometimes. So, help me out here. Is this election a complete farce of humanity with 11 rapists sitting around casting the votes for the next president or is this something many men really believe in?

Yes, I’m a Canadian but my Grandfather was a first generation immigrant in this country from Michigan. So yes, I do consider my American friends as cousins. (I do love you folks.) But I am gobsmacked at this. And I feel for you.

All I can hope is that once these monkeys are out of the barrel, it’ll be pretty fucking hard to stuff them back in. That no one will forget the idiocy of anyone using the word RAPE in their platform to get elected.

I don’t care what anyone says, using that word to further any cause regarding reproductive laws implies that it’s okay to commit the act. That it happens. No big deal.

It’s not okay. It’s a big fucking deal. If these men get in, fear for your wives, daughters, even your sons and brothers. Your love ones will need you to.

 

 

A Dog Shaped Hole In My Heart

I got Daisy when I was 31. I was living with one of, if not the best abusers on the face of the earth. He happened to be a police officer which made him that much better at it. He knew how not to leave marks. Every day was an interrogation, a trial, which I inevitably failed at. I lost 20 pounds in less than 6 months. I didn’t eat. I barely slept. Panic attacks became my reality and I started to shake when I knew he’d be coming home. He decided to move us out to the country. I believe it was just to have more control over me and less prying eyes.  At that time, I decided I needed a dog, as an alarm, as protection from cougars and bears.To let me know when he was coming home. And of course because I needed company.

My parents had come to visit and while they didn’t know precisely what was going on, I think on some level my dad knew how bad it all was. Without any forethought and with the abusive ratbastard beside him, my Dad bought me a puppy.

He handed it to me as if it  were a gold-plated sapphire. “It’s a female! There was some guy selling them outside of a tire shop! She was only 50 bucks! She peed on me on the way here but that’s okay. She seemed like the quietest one.” And lo, I had a dog.

I found out within a few days why she was the “quietest one”. She was sick. So, so sick. Didn’t eat, wouldn’t drink. I made 3 trips to the vet, Daisy staying overnight with an I.V., just to bring that poor sick little puppy around. Abusive ratbastard kept raging about how a bullet would be cheaper than that fucking dog. I didn’t care. In less than 2 months, she went from a $50 dog to a $900 dog. But she was mine. The more he tried to crush me, the more I loved the dog. When I thought about ending me, I stayed here for the dog.

I think I’d had Daisy 3 months when I left. She gave me the strength and love to move on. After that, it became “love me, love my dog”. Two years later, she went on the second date I had with my hubby. He passed the test.

Daisy was with me through our courtship, baby and marriage. She was treated as a member of our family. My hubby bonded with her when Daisy went fishing with him and had to lick every fish he caught. When she greeted him at the door at the end of the day. And when we brought our new baby son home, she sniffed him head to toe and wagged her tail, as she finally had her own child to play with.

I kept her here for maybe 2 years longer than I should have. Her hips were gone, to the point that she had to be helped up a couple of steps to get into the house. She was losing her bladder control. Her breath. I made the decision last Saturday. I knew. She knew. We were both very brave as we took our final walk and car ride. She had chicken for breakfast and a hot fudge sundae as a treat. Chocolate is bad for dogs but on their last day here exceptions can be made. I held her and thanked her for all she’d meant. She butted foreheads with me, which was her “I love you and I get it” sign. It was peaceful. And my heart broke.

We went away for a few days this week as a distraction from our grief. When we got home I checked messages. The vet had phoned and Daisy’s ashes had arrived at the office. I dropped everything and told my boys,”I’m going to pick up our girl and bring her home.” They both got teary and nodded.

Tonight is a blue moon and we sprinkled her ashes around the yard she loved so much. How perfect. How fitting for my rare dog.

Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened. ~Anatole France 

Bye, Daisy. Good girl!

Simply Tricky

I’ve been having wild anxiety lately, to the point it’s almost crippling me. I find it hard to leave my house. My stomach feels as if a cobra is fighting with a … well, another cobra.

Sorry. I couldn’t really come up with anything else that is quite as horrifying to me. I HATE fucking snakes. Don’t even say snake, always say “fucking snake” around me. I’ve said before that the only snake I like is a snake that eats another snake, feels really guilty about it and commits Hari Kari. I don’t hold that god or satan created snakes. I think they fell here from some strange alien planet where the people freaked out and said “Jesusmurphy, those things are scary motherfuckers! Lets get rid of them!” and herded them all onto a meteor that landed here.

Even as I write this, my stomach is churning. Remember my craptastic adventure? Turns out, nothing was wrong. Nothing physical. I phoned the hubby to tell him the results. He said “That’s good, right?”.

No. It’s actually bad. Really bad. An illness would be simple. If this is emotionally related, mentally related, anxiety related, it becomes tricky.

Trickytricky.

With the anxiety comes the depression. With the depression comes the anxiety.

Trickytricky.

I know how it works. I also know that unless I buckle down and buckle up, do the work and tear the shit I’m carrying away from my psyche, I will get worse. That is unthinkable.

I’m ready. I can do this. It’s not going to be that hard.

Some people will have to be purged from my life. Others (my Soph, my Kathy, my Mary) I will hang onto for dear life. And my hubby. I’ve really never met a better man. He doesn’t pretend to understand. But he gets it. And he believes in me like no other.

I’ll share with you folks what I feel comfortable with as I go through this, in trust that just maybe some of it will help you or someone you love.

And don’t worry. I haven’t lost my sense of humour. I’ll still post my nonsensical bullshit to make you smile. I really love it when you laugh. It distracts the snakes. Well, that and rabbits.

I’m ready. I can do this. It’s not going to be that hard.

Be kind to each other.

p.s. As ever, I’m here if you need to talk. lgmoffat@gmail.com, twitter @gustyduck.

 

 

 

 

An Open Letter To A Blogger (Not You.)

Dear Well Known Blogger: (No, not you, or you, or you.) (Quit it! It’s not you!!!)

I read you for a couple of months a year or so ago. I liked your writing and you had a great back story. Very sad, indeed. But you wrote it well. I followed you on the twit and Facebook. I wanted to know you. I really wanted to like you. I imagined gleefully meeting somewhere, having a beer. I wanted to like you as a person, not just a bloggy face.

But then…

Well, I have issues with the whole social media thing. I do. This spring I bore witness to the worst aspects of it, when a blogger got bullied and chest butted by another blogger’s husband over what I consider something so benign as to be laughable. On twitter. For the world to see. What I found so incredibly disturbing was that this was a case of cyber-bullying, in essence, by a person that brands himself as a family man. I think I get it. He mistakenly thought he was standing up for his wife, yet the way he went about it left me to wonder what he would have done if he’d had physical access to the person that offended him.

Is this what we’ve become? Is social media just the new jungle gym to knock someone else off of? Does anyone think of the embarrassment that they may cause? Or the pain?

Back to you. I stopped following you on the twit after I saw one of your tweets congratulating a country on their killing of a madman. Like Yay! He’s dead! Way to go! That just flat-out gave me pause. If you are a person that advocates for others (which you do), why would you ever tweet about anyone’s death like that? I didn’t get it. I unfollowed you and stopped reading. But like I said, I really wanted to like you. For you.

I just came back to you a few days ago. I was almost excited. Like reconnecting with an old friend. But you did it again. You insulted someone on twitter. Someone that had done a lot of work, laid themselves out in front of people. Someone who didn’t deserve to be made fun of because they were sharing their truth as they see it. You called them a name. I ask you; if that person read your ‘harmless’ little tweet, what do you think they would feel? What if that person made their living this way? Who are you to piss on them?

Again, I think I get it. I’m of the mind that you think you are as famous as The Bloggess. www.thebloggess.com. That just maybe, you can call people out and be rude when you feel because you are “famous” and no one will take you to task. Well, I’ve read almost all of Jenny’s work and I will say this. If she has to get into a shitfight, she manages to still do it with humour and dare I say, a semblance of class. If she calls out her minions on twitter, all of us now happy members of The Unicorn Success Club, she also can call us all back. Do you know why? Because we are all nice people. We read her because she has a good heart and like attracts like.

Having said that, if I have to be a social maven who is rude, mean and thinks others are beneath them to be successful at blogging, I guess I want no part of it.

I think I’ll happily stay here in my own dimly lit little corner of the web. I hope you are aware that if I tweet, as I’ve been known to do, the biggest person I make fun of is myself. And I never high-five anyone’s death. I don’t care who it is. That is just bad form.

I think that’s it. If you do read this, I can only hope that you realize that fame is fleeting. Someday soon you’ll be second-hand news. I also hope you learn that an inner censor is not a bad thing. You are better than some of the things you’ve put out to the world.

Different, Not Less

I feel obligated to write this. It may be different from everything else of mine you’ve read, but it needs to be written. And I need to purge.

A while back, I wrote about my Uncle Brad. https://onlyoddduck.wordpress.com/Brad If you’ll remember, he has cognitive impairments, autistic symptoms, hearing loss, and now is going blind. I saw him briefly at Christmas. This is his story, in honour of him. This is also a cautionary tale and a call to arms for anyone with a loved one who may be differently- abled.

My grandmother did the best she could for Brad. There wasn’t the knowledge and expertise that there is now, 30 years ago. She moved off of her beloved farm into the city, just to get Brad a bit more help. As I’ve said before, he never was given a concrete or specific diagnosis. I recall once, when he was in his teens, a diagnosis of “Emotionally Disturbed”. To me that smacks of Autism, yet also makes no sense. Like I said, we’ve learned a lot.

He lived with his mom, went to school until the age of 21. He had a job at a recycling depot. He was functional. He wasn’t “one of them”. I think my grandma’s mortification possibly prevented him from getting more assistance and training in life skills. But I don’t begrudge her anything. She did the best she could with the knowledge she had at the time. Plus, he could be so “normal”. He was just Brad.

Then she died. He was 33. He’d never lived on his own and had only ever had his family for support. What now?

He tried to live on his own with my mom and dad for support. I’d help when I could, but I lived in another city an hour and a half away. I remember, he would obsessively clean the house after work. It was as if he thought if the house was clean, he’d be seen as capable and could stay there. Yet he’d wash a dish and turn the faucet on all the way to hot, so hard, he would have to phone my folks to drive over and turn it off. Once I found him trying to clean something off of a table top with a screwdriver. Brad also couldn’t sleep through the night. His OCD would have him getting up at all hours, to check that the door was locked.

It finally came to a point that he needed to live in a group home, for his own safety. The town where he lives found him a spot in a new supported living group home. The operator of this home had no qualifications or training, however she had a daughter who was schizophrenic. Apparently this qualified her to get money from the government and have 4 extra disabled folks living in her house. Now, here’s the interesting thing.

Did you know that if you have a mentally disabled person living in your house, you get less money than if you have a mentally ill person living in your house? Yeah, me either.

Brad has always told himself jokes. He’s always talked a bit under his breath to himself. It’s part of who he is. I tell myself jokes all the time. I talk to myself all the time. But because of this woman’s ‘expertise’ in mental illness, she decided to convince a psychiatrist that Brad was delusional and having auditory and visual hallucinations. That he was potentially dangerous. Just like that, he went from being disabled to being a mental health patient.

And his group home operator? She got herself an extra $700 dollars a month. He was put on pills. Lots of them. In the psychiatric industry, we call them chemical restraints.

He was drugged when I’d go to pick him up. To the point of bladder and bowel control problems. He was dirty. His clothes were filthy. As I was working in mental health at the time, I about lost my mind. He moved. As fast as we could do it. As an aside, that lady? She ran her home unimpeded until she left town several years later.

In the last 10 years, Brad hasn’t been unmedicated. I believe he is still under the psychiatric umbrella. He now lives in a group home that is very well staffed, clean and comfortable. He’s well liked and well looked after. He is a different man than a decade ago, but for all intents and purposes, he is happy. He still tells himself jokes. But the people who care for him make him speak up so that they can hear.

The point of all this? When I saw him at christmas, I realized that he is aging far more rapidly than you and I. He will need more care than can be provided to him, sooner rather than later. All that is available where he lives are regular long-term care facilities. I’ve worked in them. It will be absolutely the wrong place for him. Trust me when I say the chemical restraints will just get tighter. A drugged, bedridden patient is much easier to care for than one like Brad.

My folks are aging. He lived with them as long as he could. They haven’t the stamina to have him back. Their health should be their priority. Rightly so.

It falls to me. To that end, a couple of years ago I started phoning around to see what steps I needed to take. I was told by a lovely lady who has made this her life’s work that it was going to be an uphill and unhappy battle. As she put it, “In this country, one province does not want another province’s retarded people”. She told me that I would probably not be able to get funding for him here and that to the powers that be, it was my problem, not theirs. She also told me to never move him into my home, because I would never be able to get him out. Meaning, if this government knew he was here, they would move at a snail’s pace to keep him here. Not their problem, right?

I’m not sure what will happen in the future. My husband and I have discussed it. We both understand that having my Brad rotting in an old folks home 5 hours away would be unthinkable. My mother knows it, too. She also knows that when she passes, I will be his voice.

Here’s my voice. We must remember that above all, anyone with a disability or disorder is not less human than we are. They are to be accorded the same dignity and treatment without question. We must realize that family, who are most often advocates for those that can’t speak for themselves, will pass on. As a human society, we must protect these folks in their age, as we would want to be protected. We must demand that there are facilities for the aged that are specifically designed for people who are mentally disabled. Psychiatric hospitals are not the answer.

I’m so tired of knowing of people who’ve slipped through the cracks. I’m so tired of worrying. I’m tired of people being labelled as nothing. He is my loved one. He is my Brad. He didn’t do anything wrong. He’s here. Just like your loved ones.

We need to get our governments in this game. Before it’s too late.

“I am different, not less.” Temple Grandin

Not Invisible

This is not what I had intended to write. Not at all.

But, I keep getting notice on my stats (bloggy thing) of people finding my blog using the search term, “Am I invisible”. And my friends, every stinking time I read that, my heart just breaks a bit. So, here goes.

No. You are not invisible. You might feel like that from time to time, or maybe you’re feeling it a lot. But trust me. You are not.

Because I see you. I noticed you. Right away. I know you are here. And believe or not, I care that you are here.

You may not believe this, but someone loves you. Likely a few people. Do you think for one second that your presence isn’t noticed by them? Or your absence? I’ll bet in your absence, they miss you. You just don’t notice.

Maybe the world feels against you, no one hears you calling out in your pain. Trust me. That’s a lie. Your brain is very good at lying to you when you are in pain. Don’t believe it.

Not invisible. 

Tell yourself that everyday. Yell it if you have to.

We, all people, are honoured to have you here. We don’t want you anywhere else.

I know sometimes it’s just so hard to get up in the morning and you wonder to yourself ,”Why, why, why do I feel so alone?”

I’ve been there. Mama duck has had her moments, to be sure.

Not invisible.

Even the simple matter of reaching out to your computer renders you visible. If you’ve got no one else to talk to, talk there. Look until you find it. You will.

I see you. And you can do it, Honey.

Hold fast. Hold fast.

This life is beautiful, if you let it be. You can do it, Honey.

This life is easy. And you are not invisible.

If you need me, you know where I am.

I see you.

Not invisible.

Put Some Jack Into It

I’ve been watching Canada’s reaction to the death of our beloved Opposition leader this week. Upon hearing of his passing, my first thought was a sad “Oh no.”

I’m sure most of us felt that way for a couple of reasons. First of all, I think we were all looking forward to some damn good politics coming out of Ottawa. When the NDP became the opposition under Layton, it felt as though we were finally going to have someone who would change the status quo of politics to something we could understand and relate to. It seemed that we had a ‘real’ person again, sitting in house, defending us against a bunch of overeducated talking heads. It felt like he was one of us, not a tight-lipped political Autobot. Sorry Stephen, but you have the public presentation and personality of my right big toe. And Ignatieff was a self aggrandizing arrogant prick. Sorry Mike, that ‘kiss my big ring’ crap doesn’t fly with us Canucks. Strange to think, but Canada felt like it may be a place to be proud of again. It seemed as if we didn’t knee jerk vote for our long-term parties agendas. It seemed we voted for the guy. The man who listened. A man we could have a drink with. Someone with a heart. It was exciting. Even more so to think that this poor bugger was sick with cancer and a hip replacement all the while doing so. Did that make us turn away? Not at all. Most of us watched and asked ourselves ‘How the hell is he doing that?’.

Heart.

He believed with his heart that what he was doing was for the betterment of us all.

And we felt like he loved us.

So Stephen. Steve. May I call you that? Take a lesson. It doesn’t matter to us what you say or how closely you are following your party agenda. We really want to know that you care for us as your countrymen and women. That you have heart.

We want to see you roll up your sleeves and get dirty. We want to know that it’s not just about the dollar. We want you to give a damn about every last one of us. Rich, poor, young, old, immigrant, indigenous, gay, straight, every last one of us.

We want you to loosen that bloody tie and get real. If you did, I bet you wouldn’t look like you’ve sucked a pickled lemon all the time.

We want you to ‘put a little Jack in it.’

We’re going to need you. We feel hurt and saddened. Like an Uncle died.

Rise to it. Don’t go hiding. You do too much of that.

You can’t be Jack, but maybe you can learn a thing or two from him. The rest of us have.

By the way, you did the right thing honouring him with a state funeral. Good job.

Now get busy. And show us some heart.

 RIP Jack Layton 1950-2011

You will be long missed.

John Boy Walton And My Soldier Shoulders

I feel the need to do a little clarifying. I want you all to know that I’m not thinking of anything drastic, and I’m not in a horrible state of being. I’ve been down the slope before, and always pulled myself back up. I know how to self manage. I just need to kick myself in the ass a bit. Get back to who I am. So first off, quit worrying!!!! Christ, I can hear you fussing from all the way over there! You’re  giving me a headache. And a small piece of advice: if worry did anything except cause grey hair and alcohol problems, don’t you think the world’s issues would be solved by now?

But. I thank you. I know you love me. And I have had some AMAZING support and dialogue with absolute strangers. And that is why I wrote what I did. That is why I am honest here. Because not one of us confused, lonely, sad, broken little souls is alone. Never think that. Ever. There are beautiful people out there in this world that are strangers one second, friends the next. And you folks that reached out to me? God bless you. Or Satan, whatever is your bag. Thank you. I will pay it forward.

Anyway. Day4 into a balls ass, week-long yoga intensive, from the women I took my first classes  from. Kundalini and Ashtanga. Chanting, singing, topped off with singing crystal bowls to cleanse the chakras even further. For me, it’s a no makeup, no chemical whatsoever, clean eating week. Okay, maybe I stink a bit, but hey.

So this depression deal? I can’t say when mine started. Probably in childhood. So much legacy I was handed. So much baggage that wasn’t mine. That and the fact that I was the odd duck. I didn’t look like everyone else. I had a big brown John Boy Walton mole on my cheek. Can you guess what the kids called me? Yup. You got it! First try! Kids can be sonsabitches, can’t they?

I was taught to hide very early on. Hide your feelings. Hide the truth. Hide who you are. Hide what’s going on. Hide from the pain, the embarrassment, from the wrath. Hide from God. Hide who you are. Quick! Hide!

Well.You try being 5’10”, skinny as a rail with a big mole on your face. (I always wished I was a petite blonde. Still kinda do. Anyway.) Can’t hide. Too tough. Still stand out.

I felt like everyone knew everything anyway. They most likely did. I was taught two things that stayed with me.Totally affected who I am.

Shoulders back, tits out, stomach in, chin high. Soldier posture. Soldier on. Shoulder what is thrown at you, don’t bend or sway. Buck up, Soldier!!!

Consequently, I’ve ‘pretended’ I could handle a lot of what was shoved on me. I’ve dusted myself off, when what I should have done is lay there for a while, and cry. Ask for help. But not me. I can handle it. Soldier on. 

I was also taught shame. I know shame like the back of my hand. Shame is the heaviest legacy I carry. Shame comes to me as a birthright. Handed down from both sides of my family for generations. I was born shamed.

This shame has made me rebel, and say fuck this. I do what I want.

This shame has made me hurt myself.

This shame has made me keep others away.

This shame has impaired how I love.

This shame has kept me from you.

No more. 

I have nothing to be ashamed of. I stand before everyone as I am.

My depression is not shameful. It’s a part of my life I didn’t ask for or deserve and I will KICK IT’S MOTHERFUCKING ASS!!!

You can watch. And I’ll help you do the same, if I can. I’ll hold your hand if you’ll hold mine.

The world is a pretty lovely place.

I’ll see you soon. We’ll have a laugh.