Twisted Psyche

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I have wanted
I have needed
So many times
To spill the words on the page
To finish the thoughts that begin
But they drift away from me effortlessly
Like smoke of incense spilled into a draft

Philosophy pours from me
Thoughts deepen into me
Purpose struggles to find meaning
And meaning attempts to confine itself in words
So that purpose can be comprehended
But the fit is like pouring the mother
Into the maiden’s pants
While the crone sits by and chuckles

We are all made of water
But so few of us know
So they pretend to be made from wood
Or from stone, barely shape-able
Because they fear…
What?
What is it that they fear so intensely,
So intensely that they explode
In ultimatums and electrostatic detonations

They sear the atmosphere with their zeal
Demanding that all inhabitants of this world we share
Bow to their own interpretations
But the blind man feeling the elephant’s trunk
Has no real advantage over his blind brother feeling its tail
Neither is entirely wrong and neither is entirely correct
But they cannot possibly comprehend that
The only wrong here is to force their brethren to walk
On a path they were never intended to follow

How are we to judge one another, then?
How do we assert what is the right thing to do?
We do not. That is the point.
We may speak of our experiences and the outcomes of such,
But we must constantly view life with the understanding
That we were meant to be different.

Namaste
I wish to be one with you
And to celebrate our differences instead of condemning
Because it is this way that we can learn about the whole elephant:
Together.

I am trying to learn
That I am most discontent
When I am looking at my life
Walking my path with the constant fear
That you might disapprove of it

Apparently I do not need to accept your judgement
But I am afraid that if I do not
You will push me away from the elephant
And I will have to stumble darkly
Until I happen into another strange creature
Likely face first
And who’s to say that those already petting
This soft downy skin
And feeling these smooth conical teeth
Will not just push me away as well?

Perhaps I was made to explore
The extent of a being
Entirely on my own

People are exhausting.
People are hard.

So I’m Here

Now what?

I keep asking myself that question as though once you land in your chosen location the furniture magically moves itself from 7 hours away into your new apartment and arranges itself nicely with things neatly tucked away within. Food is supposed to stock your shelves without need for the money to purchase it and you’re supposed to begin baking and cooking wonderful things for wonderful people right away. The flu doesn’t show up just as you’re starting to get used to everything and wreck your Thanksgiving plans, killing a week’s paycheck. You don’t have to call up the only gig you have on the books for the season and cancel because you’re too sick to drive to the location…

Now what?

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In January/February of this year- this box and a very good friend are what helped me keep it together. Oddly enough, this box was given to said friend as a parting gift. It sits here, halfway through the process of painting and antiquing it, as a place of grounding in my life. As long as I’m creating beauty in the world, somehow everything will magically turn out ok.

Well the paint didn’t make it down here from Bristol, but the sewing machine certainly did. I have what I need to work the costume for my January performance, so that’s what I’m going to do. Ladies and gentlemen, the shop is now open and the artist is IN.

I couldn’t do it without you- your ooing and ahing and wondering what comes next. Thank you for being there for me.

No One Cared

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When I was a child I wanted to play dress up
But I was surrounded by boys
So no one cared.

As I got older I began to write novels
But people thought the humor and storylines were juvenile
So no one cared.

I started piano lessons and won competitions
But soon after that we moved far away from my teacher
So no one cared.

Then I began creating colored pencil art until my teacher was replaced
By someone who only did 3 dimensional art and painting, which I hated
So no one cared.

When my brother died I had to give up soccer because my father said,
“Don’t leave your mother alone after school.” I wasn’t very good anyway.
So no one cared.

I enjoyed making jewelry for a while
But I was still learning the balance between “too much” and “perfect”
So no one cared.

I was extremely intimidated by the talent of a classmate in college
Because he was gifted and I had to work, but no one knew
So no one cared.

After graduating from college I was supposed to have gotten married
It was really difficult to find a job and I wasn’t even dating at the time
As a result, I couldn’t stay where I wanted to be
But no one cared.

I started over in a new state and still had trouble finding work
I was lonely and I was hungry, but I hid it
So no one cared.

I finally grew the courage to record my first musical album
But a computer formatting accident deleted it before we were done
So no one cared.

I gathered the money and all the hope I could muster
And traveled in faith that a talent scout would want me
But no one cared.

I started over in a new state again when I got married
And that didn’t turn out the way I’d thought
I kept quiet because you don’t air your dirty laundry from your marriage
So no one cared.

I had to start over again in yet another state
But I got there and found out that my friend didn’t love me unconditionally and
No one there cared.

I started over yet again with a new group of friends who are wonderful
But that one day some guy looked at me and said,
“Why don’t you ever do anything with your life?”
Seething in frustration, I killed him and buried the body
So no one cared.

The above stanza was only what I dreamed I’d done in that situation
In and of itself that desire seems wrong, but because I didn’t really do it
No one cared.

So Many, So Much

So many talents
So many dreams
So many problems
So many ideas
So many desires
So many fears

So much obfuscation
So much waiting
So much effort
So much winning
So much anticipation
So much discernment

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Life took completely unexpected turns.
Sometimes doing everything they told you not to is the only way to find your own happiness…
Because, honestly, the way to your happiness is yours, not theirs.
Theirs is the way to their happiness.
And in a lot of cases I think that the path they took didn’t make them happy either…
Misery loves company, I suppose.
I don’t want that kind of company.

Off I go. I’ve finally gotten close to getting my feet back under me and I’m looking forward to spending much more time here with you all.
I’ve missed you.

Disgraced

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The rumbling monotone of breakfast voices carried an ominous tension as dragoons consulted their squadmates and discussed the ramifications of the loss of General Jodoc. Buzzing voices fell silent as Tyrel neared the entrance to the mess hall and eyes wandered the walls in an effort to see anything but her form. Tyrel snorted and rolled her eyes, pushing her way through the crowded door frame and switching her tail in annoyance. An aura of silence seemed to emit from her as effectively as though she’d inadvertently cast a spell. The more bold among them stared directly at her as though challenging her very existence.

Tyrel ignored the attention or pointed lack of it and entered the feed line midway, sighing. It was going to be a rough day and she needed coffee. A flicker in her peripheral vision caused her to cock an ear toward the movement as she carefully resisted the urge to turn her entire head. Two looming dragoons approached with the flowing cloaks granted to sixth years, marking them as nearly graduated. Their leather uniforms classed them as officers in training and their narrow faces marked them as upper class. A brief glance in their direction confirmed Tyrel’s suspicion as she caught sight of their much-coveted sharply angled legs: aristocrats. The scent of fir became overwhelming as they stopped inside Tyrel’s battle zone and stared at her expectantly.

Tyrel sighed and ignored them. Claudius and Blaze had bullied her since her first day here three years ago. She had no expectation that today would be any different. Other dragoons began to shift nervously away from the confrontation.

“You’re out of line, Ama,” Claudius declared far more loudly than necessary. All sound immediately ceased as dragoons and service staff alike froze to await the outcome. Tyrel continued to ignore the pair, staring straight ahead as though it was just another day. Claudius inserted himself directly in front of Tyrel, close enough that she could see no higher than the center of his chest without tilting her head back at a ridiculous angle. The smell of fir began to burn her sinuses as Blaze boxed her from the side.

Claudius hooked two fingers under Tyrel’s collar and shoved her chin up with his thumb, forcing her to stare him in the eye while stretching her throat to its full extension.

“Did you hear me?”

Tyrel sighed in annoyance. “Yes, I heard you. Dam’s name instead of sire. Very clever, sir.”

Claudius’ sigil finger flicked the broken link where Jodoc’s medal used to hang. “What do we have here? Broken link to your collar? Lose a rank in the yard scrabbling around with the stable boys, perhaps?” Claudius sneered, lowering his nearly equine face to the point of almost touching Tyrel’s distinctly humanesque nose. “You don’t belong here.”

Tyrel rolled her eyes over to the service staff on the other side of the counter. Without meeting her eyes, the nag nodded slightly in affirmation. Claudius’ sneer deepened to a grin as he shoved Tyrel backwards into Blaze. Blaze turned his shoulder away as though mere contact with her would taint him and she gracelessly staggered to freedom. A brief glance at those around her confirmed that she would receive no assistance here. Dropping her eyes to the floor she wove through the crowd into the tables beyond the dispensary. Murmurs resumed in her wake.

After pausing for a moment on the edge of the sea of tables, Tyrel unwittingly fingered the broken link at her neck then wove her way resolutely to the tables furthest from the door. Her wings stirred in agitation occasionally, realigning the black bars that marked her russet feathers. She gracefully threw a leg over the bench to an empty table and sat with her back to the room. Although she was technically where she belonged according to city hierarchy, the stable hands, service workers and dragoons of low rank at adjoining tables swiftly gathered their trays and awkwardly moved away. Overcome by the depressing circle of emptiness, Tyrel threw her other leg over the bench and covered her face in her hands. Leaning on her elbows she tried to shut out the world.

Her momentary relief shattered at the sound of a tray scraping across the table. Jerking her head from her hands she glared warily at the small group of dragoons that were purposefully joining her table. Brutus met her eyes, his thin lips jumping into a half smile as he lowered himself onto the bench across from her.

“No. No! Guys, don’t do this!” Tyrel shook her head in agitation and began shoving their trays away from her. “You’re only in third year. Don’t make things harder for yourselves.”

“Squad looks after its own.” Grasca grunted as he lowered his solid bulk to the bench on Tyrel’s left. “You’re still a squadmate.” Tyrel stared at him as he tore into a rotisserie chicken like a predator. The sound of a tray sliding in front of her caused her to tear her eyes from the spectacle, snapping her head to her right as a palomino dragoon threw a hoof over the bench and straddled it, facing her.

“Absolutely not!” Tyrel pushed against the warmth of his leather uniform. “You will not risk your station or your upcoming promotion because of me!” For the first time that day, panic began to surge through Tyrel’s limbs, causing her hands to shake as she continued trying to push away her larger companion. He calmly set a second tray on the table in front of him, then gathered both her hands from his chest, easily forcing them away from him and back toward the table.

“Eat.”

Tyrel gave up her shoving, aware from previous experiences this was a contest she was incapable of winning. “I am not kidding. In two weeks you’ll take the cloak and be a Senary. Thain, please don’t do this.”

Thain flicked an ear and turned his body toward his food. “I’ll be offered the cloak at the end of the season, just like all the other Quins. I’ve been here five years and have no intention of rushing into my sixth.” He stabbed a pick expertly into his greens and began to eat with it. Tyrel stared at him, then looked around the table at the rest of her squad. Aside from being far more quiet than normal, this could have been any other day judging by the way they were devouring their breakfast.

Tyrel felt the back of Thain’s bracer nudge her shoulder. His left hand gestured toward her tray.

“Eat,” he repeated. Tyrel stared at him, the shock of her morning conflicting with the normalcy of the moment. Thain swallowed and turned his full attention to her, lowering his voice so only they could hear. “Eat, Tyrel.” His sea colored eyes held her gaze for a moment, then he returned to eating.

Everything emptied from Tyrel’s mind and she automatically did as she was told. It was as though the world had suddenly continued to go on without her consciousness. She felt her hand grasp her own pick and food enter her mouth. She smelled the wafts of the chicken Grasca had nearly finished devouring and the pungent scent of spinach as it entered her mouth. She heard her squad murmuring to one another about the events of the day. The taste of dandelion greens mingled with the spinach in her mouth as she cleared her plate without looking at it. She even noticed the small group of serving staff that chose seats at the far side of a nearby table and proceeded to make fools of themselves staring at Thain and giggling.

Tyrel glanced at Thain to see if he’d noticed them only to realize that he was watching her. This time when their eyes met, her detachment collapsed like a wall. Something was wrong. Something was very, very wrong. She couldn’t breathe. Her senses flooded with voices and colors and the smell of food and the sound of teeth tearing flesh and the taste of metal in her mouth. She surged to her feet, stumbling as she tried to maneuver over the bench and thread her way through tables that had never seemed too close together before. Her wings caught against unsuspecting dragoons as they sagged against their leather restraints. Service staff sprawled in the wake of her mad dash to freedom.

Her flight through the well ordered paths outside left a similar aisle of destruction as she blindly shoved every impediment to the side. Angry shouts and the menacing rattle of plate armor melted into the high pitched chinging of chain mail and the insistent ringing of a smith’s hammer. The crashing of a half-finished suit of armor into a rack of swords added to the cacophony, but nothing was loud enough to drown out the memory of her dam’s shrieks as the full realization of the morning’s events blinded her in a brilliant and painful flash of clarity. Jodoc was dead. He had died at his own hand. Jodoc had killed himself. Her brother had killed himself.

Tyrel smacked full force into the stone wall behind the forge. Her body rebounded with a vengeance, legs splaying at awkward angles as her training fought to keep her on her hooves. Blood began pouring from her face. She twitched her head in confusion, then doubled over and wretched. Heaving sobs clawed their way from her core, collapsing her body to the ground in a helpless fit of spasms as her body continued trying to regurgitate long after her breakfast was emptied. Tears mingled with the blood on her face, her mane tangling into it and creating a sticky mess.

Heavily muscled arms swiftly collected Tyrel from the alley floor, pulling her into the smell of leather, teakwood and some foreign spice. Silver mane had escaped its leather tie and spilled into the tear streaked mess on her face, mingling with her own auburn snarls. Strong fingers gently disentangled her mane, brushing it from the mess on her face before guiding her into the curve of his neck. For a moment she fought the embrace and tried valiantly to stifle the sobs before collapsing from the effort. The slow and steady rhythm of a gentle rocking entwined with the steady stroking of her hair, creating a momentary sanctuary. Tyrel abandoned her last shreds of dignity for grief.

“It’s ok. I’ve got you. Just let it go.”

The sun streaked, then dominated the horizon as the soothing sway continued. Tyrel wept herself mercifully senseless, wholly unaware of Thain’s tears falling to blend with her own.


This is Part II in a series.
For Part I: It Begins

 

 

 

Pretty Things

Photo by Cassie Frese

Photo by Cassie Frese

Today I hung up my wings
And I cried to see them go
Into the back of the closet
Unsure of when next they might emerge.

Today I gently fingered the leather
Of the armor I loan to my friend
As I put it into a basket
Unsure if I will ever see her again.

Today I put away my sword belt
And I cleared the real money
And necessary things from my bags
While leaving behind coppers and tags.

Today I put away the warrior
That everyone can see
And instead I return to being the warrior
That dresses and reasons like me.

My fighting spirit cannot be hung on a rack,
My determination contained in a basket
Or my dreams left behind with the copper.
Even when no one else can see,
There is
And always will be
A Tyrel in me.

Today I posted my rings for sale
From a marriage that didn’t survive.
I cried to know I will soon see them go,
But I’ve bills to pay,
A dog to feed,
And nothing is so pretty
That it outweighs my need to fly.

I am still The Girl With the Wings

What Do You Want From Me?

The phrase runs over and over, around and through my head. It infects everything I touch, everything I sing, everything I think… I cannot get away. I wake in the morning to wonder why I’m here. I wander through my day wondering why I bother to go on living. I’ve cut ties from the nagging judgmental voice in my head. There’s no one left telling me what to do. One problem: I was never prepared for this moment.

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There was this assumption that I would hold to the insistent and impossible expectations for the rest of my life… a life ever shortened by the attempt to fulfill such. The list was so long and so detailed it even told me to tie my shoes in an effort to be sure I caused no one else to stumble. “Have a relationship,” it said. Then it made every effort imaginable to make that commandment impossible.

I have no desire to pretend anymore that I’m satisfied with letters written to someone else thousands of years ago. No lover would accept that as enough to maintain an ongoing relationship. So let’s put that notion aside, shall we? Let’s get very real with ourselves and begin to treat the divine as though it is living since we so vehemently claim that it is. Let’s walk very far away from this notion that others have any say whatsoever in how and whom we worship and be truly respectful instead of hateful, but presented “with love.” Let’s keep our appendages inside the ride from now on as no one really needs to be bloodied by our own flailing foolishness.

Let’s figure out why we’re really here. The reason I was given was so abstract as to be an impossible deterrent to ending my personal existence. In a nutshell: not good enough. I need a reason that justifies the food I eat each day that could have been better utilized if given to another… because, what did I do today? I managed to make it to the end.

Sex and money. That’s the answer, really. At least that’s been my experience. Occasionally you run across someone that wants something else, but generally it all comes down to sex and money. It’s like people no longer value friendship, music, philosophy, art or “by hand” fabrication of any kind. What do you do when the thing you have to provide to the world is undervalued? Even in ancient Israel the church musicians were paid (via meat and other foodstuffs from the offerings and money from the tithes). What makes us any less important today that we should be providing this service for free?

Look back in history. There’s always been artists of all kinds: musicians, philosophers, writers, weavers, sculptors, painters, wood workers, metal smiths, seamstresses and tailors, hatters, jewelers, glass blowers, cobblers, storytellers, dancers… the list goes on and on. The ability to innovate and create- this is how we connect and relate to the divine. So why are we not provided for in such a way that allows us to do that? It is a blatant hypocrisy that a faith would tell you your purpose is to glorify the divine and then not support you in such a way that you might pursue that calling.

And sex? May the divine have mercy and rescue every single young female still entrenched in the ways and thoughts I grew up with. Be a perfect wife. Become a mother. Satisfy the needs of your man, because it really is a need, after all. Bullshit. Those who abstain do not die from the effort. No woman is less because she is unwed. Absolutely no one on this earth requires a legal or religious union to another in order to be the pinnacle of themselves as a person. The choice to take a mate is just that: a choice. Inside that chosen union they choose to love and need one another so that together they might achieve greater or other things they could not otherwise do alone. It is not necessary. It neither cheapens nor enhances anyone’s worth. It is a personal choice that we make.

And now we’ve arrived at the heart of the matter. It’s personal. Everything we were taught to stick our noses in was, in fact, personal. I’m not required to open any door of my soul to another for any reason whatsoever. My soul is my own and I have every right to close every door and window until I believe the climate fair enough for a cross-breeze. On the scratched side of the coin, I am also not under any obligation to acquire a crowbar and force my way into the soul of another. Anyone who sits walled away in their own tower awaiting some shiny suit of armor to haul them out is fully capable of screwing up their own courage and opening their own doors. If they are paralyzed by fear, I shall stand under the window and sing to them. In the end, coming down to mingle must be done under their own power. It is neither my responsibility nor my fault if they do not come down.

All this time and my mind has been programmed to ask the wrong question. Any intellectual knows that finding the proper answer is far less important than asking the proper question. I have recently begun the battle to leave this flawed line of thinking far behind and replace it with something that will yield superior results. I have recently begun to ask myself, “What do I want from me?”

peace     acceptance    love     happiness

That was my answer. This is what I want from myself and for myself. I’ve written it down now and placed it in front of all of you… opened a tiny window into a room of my soul. It is suddenly so much more real. It is suddenly so much more obtainable because it is concrete.

Let the journey continue…

It Begins

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The morning began with screaming. There was a war going on, but this wasn’t the front. How were they to know this morning would be less than peaceful?

Tyrel fumbled her sword as she swung off the bed. Only being half trained had its drawbacks. Her hooves joined the general clatter around her as the wooden barracks began to shake with a sound like thunder. Warriors were heeding the call.

Lighting in the room suggested to Tyrel that it was entirely too early to be awake which explained why she was stumbling on her way through the door. Organized chaos sucked her into the double line of soldiers pouring through the hall. Tyrel ricocheted off a few disgruntled classmates before falling into rhythm. Beside her, Bain was fully liveried and eyeing her unarmored self derisively. Only his dripping hair suggested that he’d been less than ready and waiting for this alarm.  As the trotting column passed an adjoining hall a cross breeze wafted cedar from his mane to Tyrel’s face. Tyrel snickered. Yup. He’d been in the showers.

Bain glared at Tyrel as they rounded the final turn to the great room. She snickered at him again as the two columns split to fan out around the door on the opposite side. Several students were panting heavily in full armor. Tyrel wondered briefly why they were all facing this particular door instead of one of the other six. Then she realized there were several other students eyeing her sideways. She appeared to be the only one present with no armor whatsoever. She gave an exaggerated shrug and rolled her eyes.

A faint rattling and a few coughs broke the silence as the ranks awaited attack or orders. Tyrel glanced sideways. Her comrade hadn’t managed to get all his armor straps buckled and his nervous trembling was jarring the plates.

“Tyrel,” he hissed. “Do you think it’s going to be a troll?”

“Crimson, Brutus. Of course it’s not a troll. We’re only in our third year.”

The door slammed open and a serving nag rushed through. She skirted the room, hugging the walls as a shrieking wail echoed after her and caused the students to wince. A stately aristocratic woman emerged at a halting pace, alternately tearing at her mane and her heavily ornamented dress.

“Isn’t that your dam?”

Tyrel eyed Brutus with a sideways glance. Someone behind them shushed him. The whites of Tyrel’s eyes began to show.

The dam dropped to her knees, her bright auburn tail wisping over the floor and the folds of her dress as she sank completely prone under the weight of her distress. Behind her another regal figure emerged, his majestic presence flanked by a standard bearer and a  personal guard. The student ranks saluted him, crashing weapons and armored gauntlets against shields precisely twice. Tyrel, with nothing to crash her sword against, stood solid, nervously glancing between the dam and the Region General.

The General glared contemptuously down at the keening dam. His teeth bared in a wicked sneer.

“Silence, woman!”

The dam tightened her fists in her mane, pulling her head to the floor until her forehead was pressed against it. Miserable sobs still leaked through her arms.

Two more guards emerged from the passage wearing the golden armor of the Royal Guard. They took up positions on either side of the General, their sneers menacing as they viewed the dam and stared into the ranks.

“General Jodoc has fallen to his own hand. He has disgraced his family and dishonored the Crimson. So shall his name be stricken from the record.”

The dam’s shriek pierced the eardrums of all but Tyrel. The General impatiently kicked her.

“I said silence!”

He motioned to the Royal Guards who advanced impatiently to her. As one held her struggling wings the other stripped away her crimson shoulder sash of privilege.

“No,” she cried, reaching after it. “No. No!”

The dam’s passion crumbled and she sank to the floor again to lay there as though slain. Her sobbing subsided to a childish mantra of denial.

Those standing closest to Tyrel took one step away from her. Those standing between her and the Royal Guard parted to leave a path. With wolfish sneers they strode to her, not caring who they crashed into on the way. The path widened as students shifted to avoid contact with their slightly unfurled armored wings. Tyrel schooled her shock into a glare fixated on the scene before her. The guards arrogantly entered her battle zone and pressed forward until they were firmly planted in her personal space. Tyrel’s wings briefly stirred, but that was all. One of the guards snaked his face mere inches from her own. Tyrel humored him, refocusing on his eyes, and raised an eyebrow.

The guard increased his wicked grin as he slowly reached up to Tyrel’s chain link collar and fingered the golden medal of familial privilege that represented her brother, Jodoc. Tyrel refocused on the far wall as he viciously yanked the pendant from its ring. A throaty chuckle escaped him as he purposely crashed his armored wing into her while striding to the exit, his companion following suit.

Two more cacophonous crashes saluted the Region General and his entourage as they made their stately exit. Then a sergeant somewhere called the signal for a fully formed exit. As though she was surrounded by an invisible shield of force, the lines of students actively avoided Tyrel as they passed, most too afraid to even look at her. In the space of two minutes the room was cleared of all but Tyrel and the dam.

As though sensing they were alone, the dam raised her head to focus on her only daughter. She reached her hand out slowly to the stolid figure across the room and choked out a single word,

“Tyrel.”

Tyrel maintained her focus on the far wall, the strain of emotion finally showing in her forehead and around her eyes. For a moment she stood frozen, then only her eyes moved to rest on her mother. For the eternity of two measured seconds they rested there. Then Tyrel smartly spun on her hoof and strode from the room as well.


Part II: Disgraced

Masters of our Fate

Tyrel is done with your talking...

Tyrel is done with your talking…

As a role player you get a perspective on life that’s generally inaccessible to the masses. You get to explore aspects of your personality that are being squelched in other areas of your life, find out what would happen if you went with your gut instead of with the crowd, take that chance on being a hero instead of hiding in the back of the battle and you learn exactly how little control you can have over an outcome.

At a recent game my ex walked right into a trap set for the inquisitive mind and sprung it by asking too many questions. The results were rather devastating to his character. It made me question my deep seated need to understand the world around me. Do I ask too many questions?

Anxiety is a terrible thing to live with day to day. A little fear now and again is good for the soul. A lot robs the soul of its vitality and its luster. “A life lived in fear is a life half lived” according to Strictly Ballroom and I’m watching this play out in my own, but without all the humorous moments and the wise asides by children. I’m also severely lacking in sequined costumes and men who dance as though David when the Ark returned to Jerusalem, but that’s a post for another day.

The price of understanding is knowing the answers to the questions and realizing that the bad results number far more than the good. Our world is not, in fact, set up for us to be successful. Too often the fear of those undesirable outcomes cause us to bring them to pass, which feeds our anxiety and creates an emotional maelstrom of a world to try and navigate. I don’t want to be like this anymore. My body can’t take it and my mind can’t handle it and my soul is aching from it… so what does one do to change their little world?

I have begun by rethinking my way through my entire worldview. Not the place most people begin, I know. Who is God? What is He to me? What do I want Him to be? Where am I going with my life? Is that really where I want to go? Is the music something I’m meant to do or something I’ve latched onto as personal therapy and naively believing that it will help someone else as well? What of the art and the clothing design/construction? I love them but should I be doing these things? Why am I here? What is peaceful to pursue and what is selfishly annoying everyone around me? Am I lovable? If presented with romance again, would I want to pursue it? Am I EVER going to own my own house? Should I? Am I, as I so often feel lately, in desperate need of being rescued or is this something I’m capable of doing on my own?

And then it hits me: I’m asking too many questions. And I am paralyzed.

Please, God, make me a stone… with a sweet nougaty center. In the above picture I might look like I can take on the world, but I assure you that my insides do not match my outsides.

My mother taught me that you eat an elephant one bite at a time, so tonight I am doing math. Tomorrow I will do paperwork and maybe move a thing or two. As I make these decisions and I actively choose one fear to face at a time, perhaps gradually my wings will grow lighter so that eventually, I’ll be ready to fly again.

Blessings on your new year regardless of your faith, religion or creed. My best to you all.

We Can Be Heroes

source: GATAG

source: GATAG

Heroes all and every one
Heroes fighting ’til we’ve won
Work through rise and set of sun
Making right ’til we’re undone

Heroes rise and heroes fall
Humbly we accept the call
Shedding dreams, forsaking all
Collect our swords, defend the wall

Heroes choices we must make
Heroes woundings we must take
Deny ourselves for others’ sake
Courage show although it’s fake

Some of us are born to it
Some of us choose to seek it
But most of us become Heroes because it was thrust upon us

Inside I quake. Inside I shake.
I cry and scream and drown in lakes
Of circumstance beyond control.
I just want us all to come out of this life
Alive.