Phase You Out; Should Have Seen This Coming.

I’ve been working on some serious breaks in the threads. It’s been hard. I don’t really want to have to deal with this, but the same old shit keeps coming up and ask Sekhmet pointed out, I’m “no use” if I’m “obsessed with things that cannot be changed.” Yeah, I suppose that’s one way to look at it, but it seems almost callous. When I called her callous that was around the same time my pillow fort got removed and grapes stopped magically appearing in my room over there. I guess the point was that I needed to stop distracting myself and get to work.

So, I got to work. I found the bond that was messing me up. There it was, feeling all bond like and there. I saw it for what it was – the connection between two people. I followed that connection back and back again and felt myself falling back through time and space. It was almost like the closer I got to the person on the other side, the more and more real this step was beginning to feel. I had a decision to make – break the bond or say “fuck everything” and let myself go down in flames?

Why is that always the decision though? Why the fuck is it always about whether or not I’m going to do something that I don’t feel inclined to do versus destroying myself? Why can’t the decision be something more like if I don’t do the thing then I don’t get to pet the puppies? Why can’t the decision be more like if I don’t do the thing that’s demanded of me and that I probably should do for my own benefit then I don’t get any cupcakes for snack? Why the hell is it always coming down to “do this thing or bad things will happen?”

When the fuck did this shit get so fucking real?

I’m pretty sure I never signed up for this. In fact, I don’t think when the original consent was provided there was anything to do with the types of shit I would be forced to face for the “bigger picture.” And I mean, in all honesty, I fail to see how in the world my personal shadow work has anything to do with the bigger picture. But there it is, the axe above my neck with its ominous threat, and how if I don’t do the fucking thing the whole fucking timeline is screwed up.

I strongly suspect half of this is bullshit and half of this is melodrama. I’m too frightened at the prospect of fucking up and finding out that none of it was bullshit or melodrama to stop doing what needs to be done, though. It’s a catch-22, motherfuckers; welcome to my fucking life.

Two sided time,
Your rebirth can’t hurt,
Branch out behind, the pain.

I can remember the first time it came up. It was like the elephant in the room, but my cautiousness kept me from leaping forward. I had been burned and hurt before; I didn’t need to go down that road again. But they just kept pushing the fucking button until I finally just agreed. Sure, I’d meet [person]. Sure, I’d give it a shot. And the first time we met? I was just like, “Who is this person? Why are you telling me all these things about yourself? I don’t know you. Please do not share these personal details with me.”

I didn’t like [person]. But you know what? I don’t actually remember a time where I didn’t have a violently negative reaction about people whom I would one day defend with every breath in my body, so I didn’t think too much of it. I didn’t like [person] and that was it. Okay, I could deal with the fact that I would be forced in their presence and maybe, I would stop disliking the person. And you know what? The fact that [person] was willing to work around my idiosyncrasies and my standoffishness and everything thrown in between… well, we became friends.

You know, friendship is weird like that for me though. I don’t really think I can convey how much I violently disliked previous people who would fill the role [person] would inevitably fill. I guess I’m just a naturally negative person? Which in some weird convoluted and frightening way, later morphs into some form of obsessive trust and love? At the end of the day, I can tell you all one thing – I am fucking weird.

But we were friends and it was okay. And then I got to the point where it was AWESOMEFRIENDSHIPOMG and it was just always there. I talked to [person] all the time and they just got the things I was saying. It was like I had found someone who could just accept me for who I was. I had found a place where I belonged. And when shit turned really fucking bad for [person], I was there for them. And when things got really fucking badly for me, [person] was there for me.

We were besties/BFFs/bonded.

It was a thing.

Had to to turn, lay down,
Your sting of disease.
Phase you out, should’ve seen this coming.
Go on confusing the soul,
Hold my breath ’til you rupture.

I think we were actually closer when we were separated. Like how fucking weird was that? I had someone physically closer to me who could fill the slot that [person] had once filled, but it was always [person]. I guess that makes me a shitty friend? I honestly don’t know. We had become so close though and honestly, there’s something about surviving the shittiest fucking back stories ever with the purpose of moving the fuck on and moving the fuck out that creates a real connection. I don’t fucking know. I don’t know; [person] was kind of it for me?

I honestly don’t know when shit started getting hard. Like, you know how a relationship is just so easy? It like ends up being almost like a pair of really comfortable sweatpants. You can just put them on and they’re really the best choice; they’re worn in just the right places and they keep you warm and they have that aura of comfort about them. It’s just the perfect fit and you don’t have to worry about it. The relationship we had developed was like that. It was just… nice.

I could be myself and that was okay. [person] could be themselves and that was okay. We liked enough of the same things to have things that we could talk about and we had enough differences where it wasn’t stale to be around one another. Maybe it was the fact that things were so easy all the time that made shit go wrong? Like I honestly just don’t even know.

I began noticing that I couldn’t feel as trustful of them. I honestly don’t know when it began. I look back down the corridor of space and time and I’m trying to pinpoint when things changed. When did I stop feeling like I could trust them? And I honestly have to say it was when I was finally made aware of patterns. There were patterns; same ole, same ole. But these patterns were detrimental to my mental health… something that was always on the back burner in our conversations.

And as I picked at the threads of what had been going on between us for nearly a decade, I had to come to the realization that things weren’t really about me. I was secondary. There was always something big going on in [person]’s life that was so much more important than me. Some of those big events in their life were really important; enough to back burner my emotions. But when everything began to get so big and out of control and my emotional needs weren’t being met… That’s when things stopped being easy. When I realized that this was a one-side relationship.

What made all of these realizations worse was that [person] was trying to influence my personal life. Like, yeah. I get where [person] was coming from, but their advice was more detrimental than if they had just continued to ignore the fact that I had emotions and needed to talk about them. It stopped being so fucking easy and it became less about us, more about [person], and I began to feel more and more like a second-class citizen in our own relationship.

The thing is that none of this was new to me. I had gone through this same ole fucking song and dance before. I could count on my hand how many trustworthy people I could count on and in all those other instances, I had come to the realization that I was secondary. I was always fucking second in the race and I don’t know why? I think I’m important. Perhaps because I’m naturally introverted, people mistake it as a need to not discuss things? I don’t fucking get it.

Why can’t I be important?

That’s the gist.

There it is in five fucking words:

Why. Can’t. I. Be. Important.

Like a leach,
I hold on as if we belonged,
To some precious pure dream.
Cast off, you’ve seen what’s beneath,
Now fail me.

I kept the bond. I kept holding on to it for the longest time in some mistake belief that things could go back to being easy. But the thing is that I realized… I wasn’t as integral to the relationship as I thought I should be and I don’t know if it’s really possible to fix that. When I had that realization, the bond began to fade. It’s a shadow of its former self now; less a connection and more a nuisance that I’m reminded of now and again.

How’s that for a relationship, though? I just fucking referred to it as a nuisance. It can’t be all that important, right?

And it is such a fucking nuisance, though, because it’s there. I feel it. I see it. I can reach out and fucking touch it and that bond is a fucking pain in my ass. There it is, all making weepy. There it is, making me all bitchy. There it is just hanging out and doing nothing for me whatsofuckingever per the fucking usual and I still don’t want to fucking sever it. Like what even is that? How is this even logical at all? What the fuck is wrong with me?

You know what hurt the worst about it all, though? It’s the fact that I have already been replaced. I saw it coming; I knew. I pulled away and just kept doing so until the bond would sever. Well, it didn’t actually do that because it’s still there, but I watched what was happening and closed myself off. I watched everything disintegrate and [person] went about the process of replacing me. And I am so burned on the idea of relationships that the mere concept of replacing [person] is foreign. It just does not compute at all.

I’m so compartmentalized now. I’m fractured in ways that, honestly, I don’t know if it’s really possible to recover from. I have been replaced and nothing has been able to fill the hole on my end.

I’ve been informed that if I sever the tie, then things will get easier. I thought that maybe that advice may be true, so I went for it. I reached out and felt for the bond. I found it and I marveled at how much it has changed in the intervening years. There have been so many nicks and stretch points. Did you know that we have had to tie the fucking thing together a few times? I found that out and I pulled at it and I severed it.

I tied it off and burned the ends, hoping that it would atrophy on its own.

Closure has come to me myself,
You will never belong to me.

I cleared out my house of things that [person] gave me about a week ago. I had the intention of doing something to really signal that I was done with this. It hadn’t been benefiting me in years and you know what? In the clearing out of detritus from something that had stopped being easy and stopped being comfortable, I felt a little better. I threw it all away and looked around, marveling at the pieces of myself that were a part of what [person] thought I should be. I removed those bits, too, and I felt infinitely better with it all.

I will admit that I am shattered and broken, yet again, because [person] destroyed something very good about me. I used to trust. I used to feel very connected with people. I wasn’t so introverted and being with [person] made it okay to be in public. I’ve become a shut-in and look at everyone with a side-eye. Those are my hang ups, but I hope [person] is aware that they are partially at fault for them. And maybe, they won’t fucking up replacement me as much as they fucked me up.

Note: Lyrics are from Closure by Chevelle

“One Day This World is Going to End As Your Lies Crumble Down.” (TW)

Note: All lyrics for Face Down by The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus can be found here.

The month of December went out quietly, thankfully. We had no further incidents together. I managed to pass my classes, as did the Sister, and we both made the Dean’s List. This was an achievement to me, at least, and I know it was for the Sister. I don’t recall if the ex-husband fully commented on my being on the Dean’s List, but I know he was pretty proud of the Sister. There she was, a girl who hadn’t gone back to school since high school, achieving the Dean’s List at her local community college. I think he felt that it wasn’t really a good achievement of mine, honestly, and that hurts. I was pretty proud of myself and after I told him and didn’t receive the reaction I wanted, I shut the fuck up about it. In fact, this is the first time I’ve mentioned it since then, so obviously, his lack of reaction did not do me any good.

The Sister and I were effectively housebound for January. We didn’t have any jobs. I had stopped going to my call center job the night of TH’s party. I had to work the next morning, but I just didn’t bother showing up. I told everyone I formally quit, but I just couldn’t do it anymore. It was too much with school and all of the stress from my ex-husband and our relationship. The Sister was able to procure me a job as super secretary at the Mentor Center in our school, though, because that was where she worked. I was effectively the right-hand man of the woman who ran the center. I would also be assisting with mentoring students and assisting the program in putting on events, but my official title was secretary. I enjoyed the job, overall.

TH spent a lot of time at our house, on the phone with us, or chatting online with us. He knew how we felt about being stuck in a house. And while I may or may not have told him exactly how my relationship with my ex was going – though he wasn’t dumb enough to not see how I was degenerating – he knew things weren’t going well. It was that month that, one night, a friend of mine asked if I could drive her to work at Big Y. And on a whim, after dropping her off three towns over, I called TH to meet me in a public place because I wasn’t ready to go home yet. And we sat in a Wal-Greens parking lot and just talked. I told him how things were pretty bad. I told him how I felt. And he just listened, with my car running and music on low, to everything I had to say. He was good like that.

This became a ritual for us. After the house was quiet, I would sneak off to Wal-Greens and just sit with TH, talking. I was gone for hours sometimes. Other times, since he would meet me at a halfway point with a Walgreen, I was gone for less time. It was a form of cheating, I think, on my ex-husband because I felt exceptionally guilty afterward. It was the emotional kind of cheating, but it was also giving me a base. I was able to recover, a bit, from the feeling of hopelessness and depression that was overwhelming me. And even though I had a therapist in whom I could trust with everything going on, I still held back. I was worried she would judge me for emotionally cheating on my husband, I think, but above all, I couldn’t help but wonder if she would tell him what I said. He found her through his insurance program at work.

As though the ex-husband was aware that I had long since grown unwilling to do anything with our marriage, he began to start harping on the two of us buying a house. His belief about that being what “married couples do,” was not the actual reason. I think this was his attempt at solidifying his hold on me further. If we owned our own home, then the Sister would no longer live with us and his hold on me would be complete. While I hate to ascribe the notion that he wanted to “do as adults do” and “grow up completely,” considering his behaviors prior to his suggesting this, I can’t help (now, as I did then) believe that he was doing this as a final attempt to fully push me completely under his sway. No longer would I be able to sneak out as capably to spend time with people who reminded me that I was a human being, too, and no longer would I have the assistance of the Sister to defuse the mounting tension and stress in my life.

I was terrified of the thought and dragged my heels accordingly.

My emotional state became very, very tenuous as the month of January went by. I began to worry that the reason things were so horrible with my marriage was because of things I had done as a youth. I was not a pious, virginal, sweet teenager. I did many things that I am, to this day, rather ashamed of. I said many, many things that came back to bite me in the ass in some form or another. As I tried to figure out why things were happening the way that they were, I began to believe in a Westernized [and incorrect] version of karma. I began to think of things as “you did this, so this is why this is happening.” It was not a very good frame of mind – never mind the fact that it didn’t even remotely convey what karma actually is. This should show that my frame of mind was more in line with blaming me, the victim, for what was going on in the house between my ex-husband and myself.

In a misguided effort to explain away my karma, I turned heavily towards divination.

I’m not saying that my turning towards divination was the wrong idea. It gave me solace in a mentally healthy way. However, the questions I was asking my Egyptian Pyramid Oracle were not the questions I should have been asking. I was worrying too much about the past and how it was intruding on my present and future. I should have paid more attention to the little things – the reading I gave to TH denoting that if and when he broke up with his girlfriend, he would sleep with her again; the reading I gave to the Sister in which I showed her that the world she was crafting would end; the readings that showed that the card I had once initiated as being that of my ex-husband (Djehuty) had changed dramatically (Sutekh).

Depression works in mysterious ways on everyone. To stave off her own round, the Sister spent nights with her ex Demon Boy. To stave off mine, as best I could, I played with my divination cards and spent an extraordinary amount of time with TH. To stave of his, the ex-husband stopped paying our bills, minus the car and the insurance, and bought useless things. We were all having a hard time of things.

Hey, girl, you know you drive me crazy
one look puts the rhythm in my hand.
Still I’ll never understand why you hang around
I see what’s going down.

TW: Alcohol/Alcoholism
Since TH, the Sister, and I were all having excessive amounts of issues to deal with and no one to coherently do so, we all turned to alcoholism. I have had massive amounts of drinking related issues previously, of which is slightly documented in these entries. But every night, I turned to a drink or six to make it so that I could get through another day. I know this isn’t healthy and I also know that I was incorrect in doing so. There are days, now, where the thought of drinking puts me off entirely. I drink still, but not nearly as often. I’ll have a drink here and there, responsibly, but back then? It didn’t matter. While the three of us were sitting in the kitchen or watching a movie in the living room, we all had drinks. The Sister’s were huge, half-and-half drinks; TH’s were usually about the same. I don’t remember if I poured massive amounts of alcohol into my mixers.

It doesn’t matter.

We all had demons that we couldn’t face for whatever reason and we chose childish behavior to deal with those demons.

There are days where I wonder if my ex-husband was even aware of how much drinking any of us did. He had to have been aware that I had begun drinking again. I didn’t exactly keep it hidden. But, I honestly can’t remember a time in which he said he was worried about it. Maybe he thought that by pushing us to buy our own house, it would go away? I honestly don’t know. If I had begun drinking again in Texas, without anyone around to diffuse the situation, he would have said something and it would have become another epic argument. However, while we were waiting for school to get started, he didn’t say anything to me. He made snide remarks about being immature but he never explicitly said what those remarks were about, so while I could chalk it up to some weird way of acknowledging my problem was back again, it probably had more to do with the general situation as opposed to this particular one.

One night, while the three of us were sitting at the kitchen table, my ex-husband was upstairs, but the Sister’s boyfriend was over. He had bought himself a fifth of whiskey because that’s what “men drink.” I made a joke about how I wasn’t allowed to have any whiskey – my high school friends had banned me from it. It’s a long story and it will probably be discussed in future shadow work entries, but I tend to be more of a tactless ass after drinking whiskey than usual. So, as a kind of dare, the Lumberjack gave me some whiskey. And that was really his big mistake.

That was the night I made a Lumberjack cry.

As I said, we were all sitting around the kitchen table. I had my Pyramid Oracle out, but I don’t think any of us were paying attention to the cards I was pulling. TH, the Sister, and I had been drinking vodka and diet Coke for a while by then. I would shuffle and pull out a card. Almost on a dare, the Lumberjack shared his whiskey with me. Considering the fact that I had a black out previously because of mixing types of alcohol together, it shows, to me, how very far gone I was at that point. I didn’t care if I had to be rushed to the hospital. I didn’t care if I didn’t remember huge chunks of my life. I didn’t care at all. And that, really, is what makes it so much worse when I drink whiskey. If I’m at that low of an ebb in my life where I will consciously drink some, then whatever bits of me still care will just magically dry up. And I stop caring.

It takes a while for whatever inner preservation or inner voice that prevents me from saying things to stop working. It takes a while for whiskey to do as it should. It doesn’t really matter if I’m excusing my behavior because of what I was drinking or if, as I strongly suspect, whiskey just lowers my fucks to the magic number 0. Either way, I’m not nice. And the Lumberjack was completely forewarned. As my mom always said, “Forewarned is forearmed.” However, not in his case because I don’t think he took my warnings seriously.

During all of this time, the Sister had been letting little things that irritated her about him drop between us. She’d mention a little thing here – “he breathes through his nose so loudly; why?” – and we’d laugh about it later. Then, she’d drop another hint – “our sex life is so boring” – and it was with this fuel. Under no uncertain terms did I explain to him that showering daily was good, that wearing plaid flannel shirts had gone out in the 80s, that missionary was not the only position in bed, that video gaming was a passion, not a lifestyle, and that breathing was a privilege and he should do it more quietly. I was… cruel. I was nasty. With all of the pent-up emotions regarding my ex-husband that I didn’t dare let out deep inside of me, I used that fuel to make a man cry for all the true items no one had ever said.

I think, at one point, my ex-husband finally came downstairs to protect the Lumberjack. The two of them were very buddy-buddy at that time. I shut down then. I went back to my cards and lost interest in making a man cry. Instead, I went back to trying to divine shit like why this was happening to me and where it was all coming from. I know now, of course, that everything that happened then was unavoidable. As with the loss of my job in August of 2011, it was fated. And that’s all the cards ever told me.

This was fated.

Cover up with makeup in the mirror
tell yourself, it’s never gonna happen again
You cry alone and then he swears he loves you.

One of the things that I’ve tried to figure out the most was why I did half the shit I did during those hellish three months in 2007. I’ve sat around and pondered them to myself, often, and thought, Why did I do this? I’ve looked back often, and not just because of these entries, trying to ascertain what was going through my head at the time that I made X unchangeable decision and went with it. I’ve come to a few conclusions here. I don’t think I ever consciously made a decision to do a damn thing back then. I just went off gut instinct and survival. That’s all I was really trying to do – survive a really shitty fucking life – in the best way I knew how. Drinking offered solace because when the ex-husband wanted to fight, I was too fucked up to care anymore. It didn’t hurt so badly if I was numb, right? The next steps that I made to preserve a modicum of myself are less savory and possibly, I will be judged harshly for them. But there are things a person will do to stop the pain, to stop the horror that you don’t realize you would willingly do until you’re doing them.

It’s not an excuse; it’s just the truth.

Periodically, during that month where the Sister and I were housebound, I was able to take our car to do things. They were extremely rare moments, honestly. I wasn’t really allowed to touch the car that was in both of our names unless I had permission, which was why my midnight Wal-Greens outings with TH tended to not be announced in any form. We ignored the reality – the missing gas, the missing time, the fact that I was not home – on all ends. I’m sure the Sister deflected questions on my behalf, but she didn’t know a damn thing about what was going on between TH and I. She didn’t know that I was retaining a bit of my emotional self with my midnight chats with TH because I didn’t tell her where I was going or who I was with. The Sister can’t lie for shit. And knowing this, I sacrificed a bit of our friendship to save myself. I don’t blame her and I don’t hate her for it. She didn’t exactly tell me she was cheating on her boyfriend with ex Demon Boy (never mind because I would have reacted badly). We both harbored secrets from the other that neither one of us have harbored again or since.

We tell each other everything now.

I went up to New Hampshire and I took TH with me. It was nice. We were away from both of our terrible situations. We were away from everything. We spent the day singing songs and talking about things and enjoying a peace-filled day. We ended our day together with tentative kisses. I was the provocateur. I knew TH would never make the first move and I knew that I wanted to know what that was all about. I had come to terms with the idea of only ever kissing my ex-husband for the rest of my life, but I couldn’t let another second go without kissing him. I think we were listening to Metallica and we were in a Wal-Greens parking lot. (It’s a joke now.) And then I dropped him off at home and drove around for a while before going home.

I came home to the Sister screaming, “OH MY GOD,” in the computer alcove. I went running upstairs, dropping off my packages and my good humor in the kitchen. I ran upstairs – it was night – and demanded to know what the hell was going on. “He broke up with [name redacted] and now she’s threatening to commit suicide!” She was screaming. We had both advised he break up with his girlfriend for months and he had always politely listened to our advice without following it. My good mood was definitely gone. I felt guilty. I hadn’t taken into consideration what sort of effect our kissing would have on anyone. I had thought I could go home with a boost – someone else cared about me and not in a possessive, scary way – but I hadn’t realized what sort of thing I was causing in his life. I felt guilty. I fell to the floor, shocked. The Sister gave me a play-by-play of his conversation with [name redacted]. I was in shock all night and into the next morning.

Guilt swirled around me like a cloak. I was wearing it for cheating, emotionally and now physically, on my ex-husband. And I was wearing it because I broke up a couple that should have broken up a long time ago. Really, in either of those instances, I don’t think guilt should have played into anything.

School started up again, which gave the Sister and I a welcome reprieve from being housebound. We both enjoyed our schooling, truth be told. I guess we’re exceedingly odd people who are interested in what we wanted to major in. However, non-school problems kept cropping up. One night, while I was getting ready to go into our night class (History of Witchcraft) that TH, the Sister, and I were all taking together, I saw TW my rapist /TW walking by. And I froze. Internally, I froze but physically, I was off like a fucking shot. I went outside and ran around the building and I just about wanted to run all the way back to Texas and say fuck everything. There was a message here, of course, and the message people told me it was, well, that wasn’t right. The real message was “foreshadowing.”

I was going insane. I couldn’t think or feel properly at all unless I was near TH. The Sister helped to offset what my emotional responses to what they should have been. I had every right to freak out about the situation above, but I should have paid more attention.

The first time I slept with TH, I was happy. It was nice. It was different. It was like I could feel something and like, I wasn’t really an unwanted dishrag anymore. I felt… I didn’t feel whole. That’s not quite right. It was like things were smoothing out all of my rough edges. The pain that had been accompanying me for months was gone. I was all right for a while at least. It wasn’t like other moments where you first have sex with a significant other where you’re nervous about fucking up and then, after, you’re all embarrassed. It was just… it was nice. And I felt better for a while.

TW: Rape
That very same night, the ex-husband did to me what he said he would never do to me. He had made joking comments of which I disapproved of. “Wifely duties,” was what he called it, but he had never traveled far enough outside of who he was as a person to do something like that to me. He knew how screwed up, still, I was because of the experiences I suffered in high school. And he knew that I was not a whole human being because of those experiences. He knew that Octobers were the worst. He knew that I still grew depressed about it. However, due to other experiences with rape victims, he seemed under this mistaken impression that my sexual anorexia was due to not having orgasms. What a laugh. It had nothing to do with the orgasm. It really didn’t have anything to do with flash backs, really. It was just… not something I cared to do.

So, he wheedled me. And he bothered me. I don’t know if he knew, somewhere deep inside, what had happened earlier that day. But, I told him no. I said I wasn’t in the mood. And he said that was always the case. I want to say that he held me down and I fought him valiantly. I want to tell people that I was able to scratch his face and hiss in anger at him as I fought him away from me, inevitably failing. But, I saw his face. I saw his face and the look on his face brooked no arguments. I never told him it was all right. I never agreed. I never said anything. I just lay there with tears in my eyes while emotions of what happened to me in high school swirled around me. “Wifely duties,” was exactly how he was seeing it in that moment. It wasn’t an act of forcing someone to do something they weren’t willing to do, to him. It was him just doing as a man in a married relationship is supposed to do in order to procreate and feel better about the world.

Afterward, I waited until he fell asleep, frozen on inside and on the outside. In a weird freak of emotion, I felt like I had cheated on TH somehow. What a laugh. But, that should explain how fucked up my world was then. My relationship, according to my insides, was actually with TH and I had to stomach a horrific situation in the mean time. When I knew he was asleep, I slipped downstairs and the Sister was on the computer. I had half a mind to tell her what the ex-husband had just done. I had half a mind to tell the world, but the words caught in my throat and I locked myself in the bathroom. I wouldn’t go to school the next day.

I took a shower very carefully. I know how it can be, after you’ve been raped, and the feeling of dirt being overwhelming. I remember those days where I would scrub myself with a stiff-bristled brush after I was raped in high school and I was careful not to follow that example. I locked the experience in a vault in my mind and wasn’t very surprised when I saw all the blood seeping from between my legs. It wasn’t that he had been rough, aside from the initial entering with no lubrication. He had torn me a bit because my body had resisted even while my mind shut down. Carefully, carefully, I took a warm shower – not super hot because that may have exacerbated my feelings – and I dressed in warm, bulky clothes to hide myself.

I slept on the couch that night.

I bled for a week.

A pebble in the water makes a ripple effect
every action in this world will bear a consequence
If you wade around forever, you will surely drown
I see what’s going down.

I stopped sleeping, after a while. In a twist of fate that I cannot even convey, I began to have the worst possible dreams about my ex-husband. It was like my waking life wasn’t nightmare enough, so my mind had to make my sleeping life just as awful. In fact, the nightmares were worse. Without fail, the ex-husband would find out about my cheating or about some minor infarction or not know anything at all and he would kill me. He was always choking me to death. I think my mind chose this because he had a weird fascination with erotic asphyxiation that had been brought about because of a previous relationship (the “one who got away”). Even as I write this, I can still remember those dreams and the feeling of being unable to breathe when I woke up, clawing at my neck to get his hands off of me. What made it worse was the night he dreamed the exact same thing.

He woke up, crying and clutching at me. And I woke from another spate of choking nightmares to that. I flinched as he was trying to cuddle me to him, crying into my hair. I remember looking at the ceiling, not sure if I should say anything to him because I was sure that this was it. Instead, I asked him why he was crying and he told me back the dream I had just been having, verbatim. “And I killed you,” I remember him sobbing at me and that’s when I knew that this wasn’t some fucked up emotional response. This was real. There was a part of him that wanted to kill me and choke me to death.

On my old blog, I wrote about this. A very old friend who is extremely Christian said, “Symptomatic of occult involvement I’m afraid. I’ve seen it happen to a workmate.” At first, most rational people who scoff at such a statement, but I didn’t. I was long since far from rational at that point. But, while the Sister and I were very busy trying to figure out why my ex-husband had changed so dramatically since we moved in together in September, demons had come up. We had watched one work on her ex Demon Boy before. And while I wondered if it was possible if the demon in Demon Boy had brought reinforcements to infect my ex-husband, I don’t think so. I honestly don’t. I think the ex-husband invited something in at some point, knowing or otherwise, and this was what we had to deal with: the aftermath. This explained, clearly, why the Pyramid Oracle deck had gone from his card being the card of wisdom and guidance and positive male influence to chaos and the bringing of death.

It was around that time that the ex-husband changed completely for the worse. I guess I was the catalyst.

I was out, on one of our midnight chat sessions, with TH. I was in his car and he was telling me to run away. Both the Sister and TH, by this time, had only ever told me to get out, get out, run away, go back to Texas. But, I was honestly frightened of what he would do when he found out that I was gone. I knew he would attack the Sister. She had told him, previously, that she had back up in the form of her dad, her grandfather, her uncles, and her brother, but I was so frightened of my ex-husband that I didn’t think they’d be able to hold out against him. And I was worried what he would do to TH. I didn’t know his family or what they were like. I didn’t know anything about them except that they were people who lived in the same house with him. They had guns, I guess, but I didn’t think it was enough to stop him from doing something crazy to TH.

And he was a firefighter – part of the boy’s club. It was yet another problem that runs rampant in small towns with police, fire, and EMS. They get together and they can do no wrong. They all bleed the blood of men and women who are first responders. What I would have said, had I gone to the police, would have sounded crazy. And I think the ex-husband may have done that on purpose.

“Take money and stash it,” they said. My mom told me to get a duffel bag to bring my “essentials” with. I was told to get a throwaway cell phone so I wouldn’t have to rely on the ex-husband’s largesse to communicate with people he didn’t want me to. But, he would have found all those things if I had tried to hide it. Even if I had hidden it in the basement where I would never go, he would have found it. If he had the smallest inkling of what was going on, he would have found all the things I was hiding and it would have been worse for me, I think. If he really was possessed by a demon, it didn’t matter how good at lying and hiding I was – it would have found all my plans.

It was then that the ex-husband began to say, “I would let you divorce me, but then I’d have to kill you.” All in one breath. If he wasn’t saying that, then he was telling me what he would do to my friends, my dogs, my family if I went missing. I knew better than to run away.

So, anyway, that night I was with TH and he was telling me what I should do. Or what I could do. And that’s when the ex-husband called. I shook and started to cry. I flung my phone. It would stop ringing only to ring again. You know how in horror movies the phone will ring constantly? And if it goes to voicemail, the caller will hang up and try again? He did that to my phone something like 17 times before I turned it off. And I cried and cried to TH about how I didn’t want to go home. He tried to persuade me to go to his house, to hide the night there, and then we would go back in the morning with reinforcements and get my things and get me out. And I was even more scared of that. I was terrified of bringing more people to get hurt into the situation.

Invariably, I went home because my dogs were there and I was honestly scared he would kill them.

I should have been more frightened of what he would do to me.

The entire time I was gone, the Sister was attempting to force rationality down his throat. It wasn’t working. The thing about being rational is that you have to want to be rational and while she was being calm, explaining reality to him, he wasn’t having any of it. When I came home, he immediately pounced on me. In no moment was I left alone with him, however. The Sister knew better than that. She was worried about what he would do to me – we both were – but she was in more of her head to know how awful things could be. He screamed and yelled and bellowed. I cried and ran away, literally. I ran up to our room, unable to face the insanity that was on his face or maybe just the fear that he was pushing in my heart. I locked myself in our bedroom, which was too much. He got out a screw driver and began pulling the door of its hinges.

I remember listening through the door, crying quietly in a heap on the stairs. And I remember the Sister trying to get the screw driver away from him, telling him that he was being crazy and ridiculous. At one point, he threatened to stab her, just like he had in the kitchen. And I remember her saying something like, “Oh, we’re going to go through this again? Do I have to remind you of who will kill you if you touch me?” And maybe that was the glass of cold water he needed. He stopped trying to take the door off the hinges, at least. I think, too, the Sister told him things that night that put him on high alert. I don’t know what she said when I wasn’t there and we never talked about it, really, until years later.

I was at my wit’s end but the fear of leaving made me stay.

I see the way you go and say you’re right again,
say you’re right again
Heed my lecture.

The night TH went out to the club with his ex-girlfriend (and can you guess what happened then?), the ex-husband and I got into a fight. We were coolly ignoring one another. I decided to go out and take a chance. I was going to buy a duffel bag and I was going to get a cheap cell phone. I was going to squirrel money away. I had to get out. I went to tell him good-bye and I did something that irritated me. He pushed my face away with his fist. I can’t quite tell if he meant to do it that way, or if I just pissed him off enough to not quite know what he was doing. He used too much force to get me away and pushed my jaw (which isn’t at its best after seven years of braces) out of alignment. I went upstairs, trying to get a hold of TH on AIM but he was gone. I blogged about it and then went to Wal-Mart. I didn’t get anything I had intended.

TW: Cutting, Razors
I bought razor blades instead.

I had been a cutter all throughout high school. I have the scars on my left forearm and my biceps to prove it. Most of my other scars have disappeared and faded with time, but those ones will probably always be around. There are days when I look down at the scars and I am disgusted with myself for what I did. There are days where I look at them and I am relieved that I didn’t intend suicide, but just a release. I vary. In this case, I was looking for a release. My emotional well-being had long since frayed and drinking heavily every night wasn’t enough anymore. I had quit cutting, cold turkey, in 2002, but it was easy to go right back to it. The same patterns can be… relieving when you’re in a situation that there’s no guidebook to.

The Sister was also a cutter, although she had never actually quit. If she was faced with a situation that is beyond her scope to handle, she will cut. Mostly she hasn’t lately but she has had her moments. Back then, that night when I bought the razor blades, I assured myself that I would not let the Sister know. It would be my dirty little secret, like everything else.

The next day was both bad and good because I had my coping mechanism all ready to go. It was bad because I had to listen to TH’s ex-girlfriend tell me about how they were back together, which they were not. I also had vivid flashbacks of all of those stupid divination readings I had given him in which I explained that it was pretty normal for people to sleep with their exes after the break up. I decided it wasn’t going to hurt – though it did, oddly enough – and cut myself a lot. I told the Sister about it later when I cajoled her into accompanying me to the liquor store for a fifth of vodka to add to my soda. She jumped on the cutting bandwagon. It didn’t dawn on me until much later that she had her demons hanging around that she wasn’t able to exorcise. And I didn’t know what they were.

TH found out pretty quickly what I was up to and he took my razor blade away. I don’t know what he thought he was going to achieve with that. It didn’t matter. He was wallowing in his own well of hate and self-pity. I’ve thought a lot in the years since that time about what it was that could have drawn him into my and the Sister’s web of horror and depression. I don’t really know if it was the relationship he had just ended or things he’s never told me. He did a lot more fucked up shit than me – who was abusing prescription meds, drinking heavily, and cutting – back then. He said once that he “wanted to try some new things.” And yeah, he was 18 and ready to explore the world. But, some of the things he’s done remind me of someone with a death wish. I usually end up blaming my fucked up life and situation for his depression. It makes sense. He falls for a girl with the shittiest luck and the shittiest home. It’s bound to drag anyone down.

Face down in the dirt, she said,
“This doesn’t hurt”, she said,
“I finally had enough.”
One day she will tell you that she has had enough
It’s coming round again.

One night, TH came over to drop off a book. The ex-husband, the Sister, and I were all watching TV. At this point, my ex-husband became obsessed with people calling before they would come over. It was yet another thing he wanted to have control over. Mostly, no one ever came over except for TH and mostly, I asked his permission. But TH surprised me by coming over to return one of my ex-husband’s books. Later, he would tell me that he was planning on TW: Suicide committing suicide that night and wanted to say good-bye to me. /TW He came over and he hung out for a bit, upsetting his plans. The Sister went upstairs and I walked TH to the door. The ex-husband went about turning off lights and getting the house ready to be locked up for the night.

I said good-bye to TH outside, joking about how my ex-husband was probably watching us. Of course, my ex-husband actually was watching us. He had suspected since October or November that I had been having an affair with TH. It was kind of amusing because it was only true at that time and not before. Anyway, we joked for a bit and I watched TH pull out into the swirling snow.

When I came back inside, my ex-husband was standing in the living room, surrounded by the darkness. I remember freezing in the kitchen doorway, staring. As Scully, in the episode Irresistible of The X Files, saw Donald PFaster much like this demon after he kidnaps her, so too did I see my ex-husband in similar guise. I blinked. He was still demonesque but his shape resumed that of the man I had married. It was then, really, that I knew I was not married to that man who wooed me with fixing his truck and a leather bomber jacket. The man standing in my living room was comfortable with the darkness deep within himself and that scared me more than anything.

I hadn’t married a paragon of virtue or of lightness, but I hadn’t married a demon either.

On the 3rd of March, I made the decision to run away and I was going to take TH with me. I told him that on the 1st of April, I was going to move away. I was going to run way, more accurately, and I wanted him to come with me as well. He decided he would. It was better than having him stay up north and die slowly without me around. When put that way, really? How can you say no to helping a woman run away from her mentally and emotionally controlling soon-to-be ex-husband? Aside from deciding that I was running away, I put no real thought into it. I didn’t even think about filing for divorce until after I was in the vicinity of my mother and the constables who loved me best. (I worked with them all at my condo job in Texas so while they knew my ex-husband, they preferred me to him unlike every other civil servant down there.)

The ex-husband was still friends with Demon Boy, who I had refused to allow near me. I had broken off our friendship after his doing something out-of-hand after the Sister, my ex-husband, and I moved in. He wasn’t allowed in the house and for the most part, everyone accepted that. I think he came over once after I told him to take a long walk off of a short pier. It just wasn’t worth it, at that point, to maintain a friendship with someone who was, probably, literally a demon in human disguise. And quite frankly, our friendship had been just about over for years. It had just been the time to get rid of him easily. I’m actually surprised the ex-husband never tried to force me into remaining friends with him. Maybe if the Sister wasn’t around, and her sensibilities regarding him, he would have.

Now, I’m not quite sure what Demon Boy said to the ex-husband to cause him to be suspicious. I don’t know and frankly, I don’t care. But something caused my ex-husband to get incredibly worried and install a key-logger program onto the computer. It caught snippets of my conversation with TH, but we were careful. TH reminded me that key-logger programs were something my ex-husband would know about so we rarely discussed our actual relationship online. But, anyway, the ex-husband came to me and demanded to know something – I forget what. And what bothered me the most was he was asking me all of this while I was in the bath, the cuts on my body as obvious as the sun rising in the east, and I turned the tables. A moment of self-preservation kicked in and I went on the offensive.

I showed him my cuts. I told him I was depressed. I didn’t tell him how he made me feel. I was careful to dance around the truth of how he had been treating me. I was careful to dance around every little hint of how I felt, what he had done, and everything in between. And I’m grateful I never said anything to him about it because things wouldn’t have gone “as smoothly” as they could have. The ex-husband offered to go into counseling with me and I refused. I told him it was over and he… he actually believed me. Instead of attacking me, instead of doing all the things he said he was going to do in previous moments, he said he would let me go.

That night, TH came over without fear of what my ex-husband would say. And the Sister rejoiced silently beside us. The Sister, TH, and I watched movies and laughed off the emotional roller coaster we had all been riding on for months. The ex-husband left the house to “spend time with friends,” but when he came home at five in the morning, he hopped directly in the shower. The Sister and I cast knowing looks at one another. It wasn’t hard to figure out he had been to see one of his lovers. I don’t think he went to see the wife he has now – but they were engaged within months of my leaving and before our separation was finalized – but we’re pretty sure he spent those few hours with the “one who got away.” We laughed at how “circumspect” he was trying to be and failing.

Getting a divorce is difficult in normal circumstances, but it’s harder when your ex-husband tries to flirt with you to keep you around or attempts to sleep with you one final time. It’s even harder when your ex-husband screws you over on how much money you can pull from the joint account you share. It’s even worse when he has a lawyer on standby and you don’t, thereby screwing over your debts report when filing for divorce. I think, honestly, if I had stuck around, I could have gotten a lot from our divorce, but I was too intent on getting back to Texas where I could recover and be safe. Divorce sucks for everyone involved, but it doesn’t help when the actual victim keeps her trap shut and the non-victim portrays himself to be one. “She’s taking the car. She’s taking my dogs. She’s still living in our house together and won’t leave.” Wah. I told TH we had until April 1st to prepare things to leave and that’s when I was leaving… no matter how much he whined at me to leave early.

Even though I got the shit end of the stick, the Sister got it worse. She had a deal with my ex-husband that if we broke up, then she would still have a home with my ex-husband. But he renegged. And that was around the time I told the Sister where the money she gave him went – not to bills she owed on, which was why our electric and gas was behind. To help her out, I ordered some oil without paying, putting it under my ex-husband’s name. Turn about was fair play.

I had to leave a lot of things behind. And the things I left behind, my ex-husband trashed. There are things that I miss. A cross-stitch my grandmother did for me when I was a child of the Last Unicorn. The Sister tried to salvage some of my things from the cleaning spree he and “the one who got away” did after I left, but a lot of things got thrown out or destroyed. There are days where those things hurt me, wound me, beyond all measure. That cross-stitch was a part of my childhood that I lost because of my ex-husband, first because I forgot to try to shove it in my Neon, and second because he destroyed it and threw it away like it was nothing special.

After moving to Texas, our separation paperwork was finalized about his birthday. He called to tell me and said that his birthday was “simply awful.” He was trying to play the victim, but I was 2,000 miles away then. I had my mother and TH. I had people who cared about me. And while a lot of the firefighters ignored me and didn’t so much as breathe in my direction, the EMS people knew my ex-husband for what he really was – a lying, charismatic jerk – and were friendly. The cops were nice to me, too, and I didn’t have to worry about telling them anything, at least. I could live in peace. So, while he whined about how his birthday was terrible because our separation was finalized a day or two before, I told him to go to hell because my birthday would always be awful since he had married me on it.

Our conversations were less civil after that.

The last time I spoke with him while in Texas, I told him I was pregnant and it wasn’t his. I wanted him to know from me so that it would be completely clear he really was infertile. I also didn’t want the rumor mill to go hog-wild up there without me there to deflect it. The child, my son, is definitely TH’s child. TW: RapeThere is no question unless women’s bodies can carry rape children around for nearly twelve months. /TW

My relationship with my ex-husband was hell on earth for a while.

But, I came out and I survived.

“You’re Killing Me, Killing Me; All I Wanted Was You.”

Note: All lyrics for The Kill by 30 Seconds To Mars can be found here.

One of the issues I have found in finishing this project up is that, as I grow closer to the end of my time with the ex-husband, I find it harder and harder to be as neutral as I think I should be. This, I feel, is borne out in my last post on the subject (linked below) in which I feel that I was more accusatory and victimized than I had hoped the entry would convey. To me, part of the point in shadow work is to be able to look at the whole experience objectively. I’ve spent the last six years ignoring the victim I had become and being angry at the whole of it. By entering the realm of shadow work, I should be able to see it all from each perspective, I think. In not being able to do so, I worry that I’ve failed at the work in question.

A few weeks ago, my co-worker and I were discussing one of the telltale traits of an emotional abuser. This trait is that, invariably, they will separate you, whether you know it or not, from your friends and loved ones. As I thought about my and my co-worker’s conversation later, it really hit me that, if nothing else, my ex-husband is supremely guilty of this. I’ve said it before, in various arenas, that there would never have been any evidence of his abuse because it was all the mental and emotional variety. However, after this conversation, it was really brought home to me that I really am an abuse victim and that I survived, magically. What makes it ten times worse, as I’ve mentioned to the Sister about this particular blog entry arc, is that I have to come to grips with the fact that I was a victim. Me. A victim. I was victimized. I let it continue on and on, well past the time when I should have said, “hey, I’m done now,” and that really irritates me.

By not being made to remember what an emotionally abusive person will do to you, I was able to shrug the whole thing off easily. I can’t shrug it off anymore. I have to face the facts: I was a victim.

If I ever had to legitimately guess as to where my ex-husband made the mistake, it would have to be with the Sister. For months and months after moving up north, he had been on me to become friendly with her. While I’ve outlined some of the funner highlights of what an emotional abusive person will do, I’m left with the evidence of his failure based solely on the Sister. He pushed me to be friendly with her. He allowed her to move into the apartment we lived in. This leads me to believe that he was not consciously aware of the emotional abuse, which is possible. You don’t just wake up one day, I would assume, and say, “I’m going to emotionally abuse my long-term girlfriend/wife today!” If not for her living in our house, I honestly have to wonder if I would have ended up dead, either by my own hand or his.

Really, the Sister saved my life.

What if I wanted to fight
Beg for the rest of my life
What would you do?
You say you wanted more
What are you waiting for?
I’m not running from you

We moved into the new apartment together, the three of us. It was a matter of days before the Sister and I went back to school. We were both going for our liberal arts degrees with a focus on history since we’re both humongous geeks. My passion is Russia, Medieval England, and ancient Egypt; her passion is the Civil War and Victorian England. It is through her that I’ve come to realize that as much as I want my history degree, I never knew what I wanted to use it for. But, she gave me the idea about fact-checking and I can get behind that. I could look up random facts. In a way, that is exactly what I do at my job now, but that’s a different tale for a different time. Both the Sister and I began matriculating at our local community college (local being a completely relative term as the school we were going to was a 30 minute drive through ridiculous amounts of traffic) with a new lease on life. We were both pretty excited and positive about things.

One of the ways that the Sister has saved me is by going to school with the intent of making new friends. That was not my intent, at all. I wanted to go to school, get my damn degree, and leave. I didn’t want to be nice to anyone. I didn’t want to do anything with anyone new. I didn’t want to have discussions, hang out after classes, or anything. I just wanted to be that asshole with the heavy backpack, a frown perpetually on her face as she walked from one building to another. The Sister was under this weird impression that she needed more friends – I believe this was a holdover hang up from her ex Demon Boy – and so, she made new friends. She demanded that I meet them and it was through that initial meeting that my life changed irrevocably in numerous ways.

School and my job took up my life, which didn’t go over very well with my ex-husband. He was needy in a way that I can’t even begin to describe. The weirdest part is that he really wasn’t needy before as all of that. He may have required that I be the center of his universe, and vice versa, when we were in Texas, but “needy” isn’t really how I would describe him. However, there were people and places that I was a part of that he was not a part of, for once. Even our jobs, in Texas, were nominally tied to one another – and he would often regale me with how I got the job at my condo’s front desk “because of him” – so we were one functional unit, not just on the island and with the people, but even so far as the condominiums we each worked for. With me going back to school and having a job that took me off to it on weekends, I had no time for him to be the center of my world. And frankly, as much as I hated the job thing, it was kind of nice to be on my own for the weekends… even if it meant I never had a day off and that 90% of the calls were ridiculous.

That first month of us all living together – September of 2006 – was a honeymoon period. The three of us were getting to know one another in ways that we hadn’t had to get to know one another. I had been living with the ex-husband for almost the entirety of our relationship at that point, but I had never seen him as a paramedic before. This was new. As we got used to our new schedules, living with a new person, and generally trying to survive what we were putting ourselves through, the ex-husband’s job was already beginning to take its toll. He would come home from the job and just stare some nights. Other nights, he’d hop into the shower with his boots, pants, and shirt on. And still other nights, he would come home and smoke my entire pack of cigarettes after claiming to have quit. It was eating him alive.

The thing about paramedics is that they will only ever meet you on a really bad day. You may be able to meet a firefighter or a police officer on someone else’s bad day and not yours, but that’s not the case with paramedics. You will only ever meet them when you or someone you love is hurting, was hurt, and are having a very bad, no good kind of day. I believe it was that month that he came home, staring blankly at the walls. He said, “I had to transport a vegetable today to Boston. The boy… he was twelve and his mother beat him so badly that his brain barely works. And all because the system thought a mother was a better care provider than a father.” I remember the haunted look on his face as he told me in paramedic language – using words and acronyms to distance himself from the situation, like “vegetable,” that he had to see – of all the horrors he could. No names. No specifics. Just generalizations. And it ate at him. I don’t know if the Sister saw this eating at him as much as I did, but it did.

And I honestly believe that’s part of the reason he was the way he was at the end.

With new friends came a whole rash of jealousy the likes of which I cannot even begin to convey. Both the ex-husband and I had been insanely jealous towards one another and towards opposite sex friends in previous years. However, I had rapidly revised my stance on jealousy over the years. I used to be, before I was with the ex-husband and his constant cheating on me, a rashly jealous person. If you so much as looked at someone, then that meant you were thinking of leaving me and I didn’t have the tact to shut my trap about it. However, one of the positives of his cheating on me, as if there could be any, was the fact that I managed to learn how to temper my jealousy. However, one of the side effects of being a chronic cheater is a sudden and intense belief that your significant other is cheating on you. I wasn’t, but it was a conversation that happened often. With the addition of new names in my and the Sister’s vocabulary, it became commonplace for him to demand if I found anyone good-looking or if I was looking for My Ex-Husband Number 2.

There comes a point where, when constantly accused of cheating, you begin to think about it.

The thing is that I was in a nasty, nasty, and deep sex-depression at this point. I think this, more than the fact that we had new friends, was why he became so jealous and would lash out with it. As someone who had been raped and molested, I have severe issues with sex. As in, I don’t have it. It will have been a year in July since the last time TH and I had a sexual encounter. As the Sister has often said, I was “in a sex-camel phase.” Yes, well, this phase had long-lasting consequences. I’m still reaping the benefits of that, but that’s for later.

Now, let’s talk about the changes. At the end of September, all of our college friends hung out together at a party. The Sister and I took our significant others of the time – she was with the Lumberjack – and everyone got along. The ex-husband brought a friend for one of our single college ladies and they hit it off. (Considering how that relationship ended and what I know of that person now, I wonder if their relationship was as bad as she made it out to be. But, there were times where the stories I got from the Sister about that girl’s relationship with the ex-husband’s work buddy could mirror shit the ex-husband had done to me. And if there’s any truth in that, then I wonder if it is just a paramedic thing or if my ex-husband was only friendly with people like him. I don’t know.) The ex-husband was slightly mollified that nothing would happen between me and any of these new people. He also seemed pleased that I had friends and we went off with the understanding that no one but him meant anything to me, minus whatever the Sister’s and my relationship happened to be.

The month of October is a bad month for me and it was no different being back in places where memories are stronger. That was part of the reason I was such a sex-camel. But there’s so much more to October… and I’ll get into it one day with these entries, when I get that far. But suffice it to say, I flew very deeply into myself and prevented myself from caring. The ex-husband’s jealousy rants began to take off about then, I believe. And I think it had to do with the affair he was having with his paramedic partner. I’ve met her and as with all the other girls he was with “behind my back,” she was tall and reminded me a bit of “the one who got away.” He also began talking to “the one who got away” around that time.

November was when the shit hit the fan, though.

On November 2nd of that year, the Sister and I attended a haunted tour of our college with John Zaffis. During that tour, while on the grounds of the college and in one of the basement areas students are not allowed to go, I saw a little old man who I dubbed, “Father Time.” I think the Sister saw him, but I’m uncertain. He followed me home and I was frightened. Dead people, astral people, whomever or whatever this old man was… I didn’t know him and prior to this any “cracking out” I may have done was fantasy living only. Nothing had ever followed me home and I was at the point where I was never, ever going to see the dead as much as I may have wanted to. (My father was dead so, you know, wanting to see the dead was kind of important.) I admitted to the ex-husband about this man following me home and he flipped his shit. The argument we had about it later was of epic proportions.

I don’t really remember the start of the argument, but at one point, he said to me, “This is why I shut down every fucking house I’ve ever lived in from spirit fucking contact. But our house was pure and I didn’t have to do it. And now? Now I have to do it, thanks to you.” The ramifications of this statement hit me like a slap in the face. I can remember crying in the entry way with him on the stairs and screaming, “Thanks to you, I’ve never fucking felt or seen my father in all the time we’ve been together when before, he was a constant presence in my life. I hate you.” It was as though he was taking my father away from me all over again.

As a child, and as a teenager, I had been able to sense my father’s presence. My mother and my little brother, to some extent, had similar experiences with him after his death. But in all the time I had been with the ex-husband, I had never felt him around me unless I was alone on the beach or with my mother. I just thought our relationship was changing or something, but to learn that the man I had tied my life to was the reason he had stopped coming around? It really and honestly felt just like he had stolen away my life in that moment.

In a kind of repentance for being with the ex-husband for so long and being without contact with my dead father for so long, I think this is why akhu veneration is as important to me as it is now. The psychology behind it holds, as well as the fact that I do enjoy venerating some akhu. But, now as I think back on it, I think the reason it’s so important is because of those six years where my father’s ghostly influence was incredibly minimal.

The argument could have, and probably would have, escalated but the Sister diffused this argument, as she would in future with the rest. I hate it when mommy and daddy fight. She had told us this was what she would do whenever we fought. She had wanted to do it when living with a [previous] married couple, but I don’t believe she had ever had the ability. All I know is that it was what she was going to do with us, as she had forewarned. And for a while, it worked. It stopped the rages in the two of us for a while. There’s something ridiculous about a 24-year-old woman whining this at two other adults.

Come break me down
Bury me, bury me
I am finished with you
Look in my eyes
You’re killing me, killing me
All I wanted was you

For a minute, let’s break while I talk to you about the Sister at this time frame. Her story is intensely tied to my story and it’s tantamount that some things are known before I move on.

The Sister, as anyone who has been reading my blog for any length of time knows, was diagnosed as bipolar disorder, type two in 2007. We were living together prior to her official diagnosis and she was not on any medications for depression. She did have Ritalin because she is also ADHD. It is because of this living together pre-diagnosis that I am incredibly able to handle her disorder and be her buddy. If I could survive her deep depressions and her insane manic episodes prior to medicating them, then I can survive anything she throws at me.

One of the joys of her diagnoses is that she also suffers from extreme paranoia. This started due to her ADHD and people being unable to follow her conversations. Quite often, she would stop in our conversations – as she does less so now – to ask me if I understood how we went from discussing window treatments to a philosophical religious conversation. I have almost always been able to follow the pathways of the conversations, as someone who has lived with ADHD people all my life, and as “a buddy.”

Since she was undiagnosed as bipolar for so long, quite often, she will have days where she thinks she is “crazy.” The diagnosis is a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, we have evidence as to why she would hand over her bank card to me, periodically, and say, “Stop me. I want to buy a tuba.” And we also have evidence as to why the next day, she would lie in bed as little more than a blob and hate the world. However, the diagnosis is public knowledge and now, most people are less likely to listen to her about anything real. They tend to equate bipolar disorder with “liar,” “manipulator,” and “story teller.” While previous doctors, prior to diagnosis, probably just thought she was psychosomatic with her aches and pains or possible a hypochondriac, now everyone chalks it up to her bipolar diagnosis.

In one instance, she was never listened to because she was a hypochondriac. In the next instance, she is never listened to because she is bipolar. Damned if you do and damned if you don’t.

I tried to be someone else
But nothing seemed to change
I know now, this is who I really am inside.
Finally found myself
Fighting for a chance.
I know now, this is who I really am.

In November, the Lumberjack was a constant feature at our home. If the Sister wasn’t going to the boonies where he lived, then he was spending the weekend at our home. The Lumberjack is exactly as he sounds. He was a very tall, meaty guy who favored jeans and flannel shirts. He was incredibly simple in his wants and desires, but he was also incredibly complicated as an individual. He and the ex-husband became very close, very tight friends during those weekends. They would talk and giggle and just generally have the manly version of pillow fights and scary story-telling whenever the Lumberjack was over. It was around this time, not long after our haunted tour at the college, that the doorbell started ringing for absolutely no reason.

I have to assume that the ex-husband had “spiritually shut down” the house by this point. I know he didn’t ask either of our opinions on it, but neither the Sister nor I were pleased. I’ve already illustrated why I was not happy about this above. The Sister disliked this idea because she has had her own ghostly happenings with her grandmother. She liked feeling her close by and I don’t really fucking blame her. It was these little visits the Sister had with her grandmother that could bring her out of some of her deepest funks. But, the ex-husband had his own ideas on the matter and we were not asked our opinions on this. So, anyway, the doorbell began to ring after this and I laughed heartily. At one point, I believe I said it was my father since he had a habit of ringing the doorbell at the house I grew up in whenever his cat wanted in.

My ex-husband wasn’t particularly pleased with this. Whenever the doorbell would ring, he would run to the door to see who was there. At first, he went the rational route. He thought some kids were playing around or someone was mistakenly at our door. However, no one was there. This happened a few times during one of the Lumberjack’s weekend visits. It got to the point where my ex-husband completely, and with back up from the Lumberjack, decided that it was a “demon” who was ringing the bell. Looking back at it now, I often wonder if he wasn’t correct in this summation.

Earlier, while thinking of some of the other bits I need to discuss with this entry arc, I have had to wonder if a demon didn’t actually end up taking over the ex-husband at some point. Maybe he was correct in his [possibly mistaken] belief that it was a demon at the doorbell. It didn’t matter. Both the Sister and I made copious amounts of fun at the two of them. “What?” I believe I said at one point. “It’s the fucking Doorbell Demon?” I went to the door and looked outside, opening the door. I called out to the alleged “Doorbell Demon” and found nothing going on, felt nothing outside.

Life would go back as normal, I suppose, but the Sister and I would remember this moment years later and giggle uproariously. It was either that, or I scream in horror at the pain and terror of the next few months.

To be continued…

“You Tie Your Arm and Ask Me If I Want to Drive.”

I draw lines in the sand all the time when I’m on this path and every time I try to stick to that line, I’m forced to revise whatever line I’m drawing. This is vastly irritating to me because I like my lines in the sand and I like sticking to them. However, there are extreme moments where those lines get blurred, erased, or I’m forced to step over them. And I will absolutely fucking admit that I hate having to do that. It’s not just that I like sticking to whatever the line I’m drawing is supposed to be about, but that I like being able to say, I will believe X, Y, and Z but I won’t go any further with this. I’m already pretty insane with all of this shit and something new may put me over the edge. So, no further. However, as time has gone by, I’ve realized that whatever line in the sand that I’m drawing is beginning to become a sort of personal affront to my OTHERS™ and they’ll fuck that shit up to prove a point.

Yesterday, they fucked my shit up again.

I know quite a few Tumblr users who work with the whole music oracle. I’ve always been interested in such a thing, but I’ve never figured any of my OTHERS™ would use this music oracle thing. I’ve had it happen where songs that I’m supposed to use during my Magical Cure Search entries have come on, songs that I had been trying to remember but failed because my memory is filled with nonsense things like ring-tailed lemurs from Madagascar. (A family trait is being able to distinguish places from photographs, or in my mother’s case, animals and where they are in the world from photographs or TV programs.) But, on three separate occasions now, OTHERS™ have pulled out a song that was particularly appropriate for them in varying ways.

In the first instance, we had Hekate using the hit song, Somebody That I Used to Know by Gotye, to hit me up. She was trying to hint at me that she and I had been working together before. It took me a while – with some help from a friend – to figure out what the message meant. But as time went by, it really helped to solidify our working relationship together. If I hadn’t heard that song, I often wonder if I would have been so dedicated to Magical Cure Search and the shadow work with the ex-husband. I don’t think I would have been, honestly. But she showed up and she pulled a song into my consciousness to (A) identify past lives together and (B) to help me move forward with the work I needed doing for my ex-husband.

The second instance, I haven’t discussed openly. I haven’t wanted to admit it, but it appears that Gran Bwa has been using Radioactive by Imagine Dragons to get my attention. This song first came on the radio the night after I began dreaming about him. I like the song – it’s a good one. It has a very nice rhythm and I enjoy the message. And I didn’t necessarily realize, at fist, who the hell was talking through this song. However, the alternative message, the one from Gran Bwa, was a warning. I haven’t heard it since I realized that I was being warned about what Papa Legba wanted of me. He was telling me to “wake up.” And of course, I didn’t so I was kind of blind-sided with Papa Legba explained what the hell he wanted from me.

Just because you hear the message doesn’t necessarily mean that you understand the message.

Yesterday, I was driving home from work and studiously not seeing the spirit world or the astral world. I’ve been very conscientiously ignoring anything “out of the ordinary” on my way home since I watched a bush stand up, stretch, spin around a bit, and then lay back down. It was all very normal, almost like I was watching a dog find a more comfortable place to lay down. However, I was seeing a bush and told myself, “NOPE.” Since then, I’ve been less than interested in anything astral related. I have not wanted to do a fucking thing I’ve been asked to do. And by golly, I’ve been studiously ignoring everything spirit related around me: the land spirit; the girl in white who took up residence on the staircase in my apartment complex, the deer spirit eyeballing me from work who wants more apples to feed it; everything. I don’t really give a shit what the hell happens or what’s going on around me. I am a big bucket of nope.

So, to get my attention, my OTHERS™ played around with my CD player. I had been listening to Ten Years Gone, the Best of Everclear 1994-2004 since Saturday. I turned the CD player on, ready to hear their rendition of I Will Buy You a New Life when Strawberry came on instead. I was a little taken aback because, you know, I was two songs away from that one. But, maybe I screwed up and forgot where I had actually left off. No. No. Of course not. Sekhmet was fucking around with shit and wanted me to listen to the song. It’s a very nice message, oh yes.

“Don’t fall down now. You will never get up.”

This message, luckily, is far more easy to decipher than Gran Bwa’s message.

I’m at the point where I just want to say, “fuck it all,” and leave this life. I don’t want to be Papa Legba’s mouth piece. I don’t want to watch as he maneuvers the pieces again and again and again to get what he wants out of my life. I don’t want to be Sekhmet’s mouth piece. I don’t want to watch as she molds me into something that is more amenable and easier for her to use. I know the reasons for the two of them fucking my day up and prancing around like loons, laughing uproariously as I slap them with “human concerns” as to why I can’t do whatever they are asking. I get it. I understand. It doesn’t mean that I particularly like being manipulated by gods, lwa, or anything else on this fucking planet.

And it really doesn’t help when they say, “These are silly, human things.”

But that’s the point in why I bring them up in the first place. I’m human. Things are supposed to be fair. Things are supposed to be easy. Things are supposed to be smooth. I’m supposed to hate my job and hate my life, retire at 65 and fucking hate the rest of my life some more. I’m supposed to get bitter and angry and foul the older I get and you know what? I can’t fucking do any of that shit because I’m so busy with my religion that I know being bitter probably goes against the living in ma’at thing and FUCKING HELL, GODSDAMNIT IT ALL.

We all go through hours, days, weeks, and months where we just can’t handle all of the “woo” going on in our lives.

I can’t handle the “woo” going on in my life, but if I stop even for a second now, I’ll lose it.

So, what’s more important here?

The path?


Their wants and desires?

My wants and desires?

As I’ve been known to say, our wants and desires don’t figure into this.

And now is no exception.

All Our Times Have Come…

Note: The song I chose for this particular entry is in my head and on my playlist frequently. It has little to do with the person in question as I consider this song belonging to my son and I. But, I felt the lyrics were really appropriate.

I woke up this morning with the telltale fatigue I’ve come to associate with working in the astral. I get this feeling about two to three times a week right now. I don’t question whatever it is my soul aspects are about in the astral, although I occasionally do wonder what it must be like over there as well as what kind of work I am doing. I will admit that I would prefer to remember things, but I’m not about to mess up the status quo. It seems to be working out well for me without the memory of the adventures therein, except for what it is granted into my memory (such as the night Papa Legba and I went dancing). It doesn’t matter what is going on; I know whatever it is happens to be working.

All our times have come
Here, but now there, gone
Seasons don’t fear the reaper
Nor do the wind, the sun or the rain
We can be like they are

When my eyes flickered open, I began remembering a dream I had last night. I was sitting at a completely unremarkable kitchen table. It was the standard rectangular table and it was by a window. It was a light-colored wood and the sunlight was dancing patterns in it. The sunlight was the slowly weakening hue of an autumnal sun. There were red leaves waving at us from outside. All I had to do was turn my head and I could see the ornate gardens that lay beyond wherever I happened to be. Those gardens had a hint of my mother-in-law’s garden, but were infinitely wilder. This is a background that I tend to associate with the astral. There’s always a kind of wildness to what we would try to put into orderly rows. The astral, however, works under its own laws and limitations; not ours.

The room was filled with a sweet scent. There were aspects of this moment that reminded me of days I spent in a yellow kitchen, still bedecked with the gods-awful flower border across the top of that kitchen. The walls were spattered with dust and grease in that long-ago kitchen. The difference here was that my mental construct with a hint of astral was more in tune with the kitchen I associate with my mother-in-law. While the color scheme was similar, there were differences. I believe this was done to make me feel safe and able to break the connection at any time.

I think it was done on purpose, but not by me

Across from me at this nondescript table was the very countenance of my ex-husband. He was as always remember him. He had his hair buzzed short and his fangs were surreptitiously peeking out from his pink lips as he spoke carefully to me. We were staring at each other earnestly as we spoke. We knew that one second, one wrong inflection, could cause an ending to whatever peace talks were being held. And neither one of us was interested in the long, dark road that would surround a break down in our peace talks. His eyes were wide, limpid pools of earnestness. He was as he always is, to me. Charismatic and full of commentary.

For once, I listened with alacrity.

Come on baby… don’t fear the reaper
Baby take my hand… don’t fear the reaper
We’ll be able to fly… don’t fear the reaper
Baby I’m your man…

You see, by the time I woke up, we were on to more mundane things than discussing what had happened in our relationship. We had come through that phase and were working on other parts. Y’see, I was asking him for advice about current life situations. It wasn’t religious oriented, but mundane really. And I woke up remembering how he used to be when we were just friends or casual lovers. I could go to him with a problem and he would have very intent, very good advice about any given subject. As long as you didn’t inflame any of his passions, he could be a good friend. And it was that outside, honest perspective I was seeking. He paid me back in kind by asking me what I thought about his mundane problems at the moment. Really, it just went to show that we were both just very much better off as friends once.

I know I confided in him.

I remember telling him that I felt as though I were a failure. Often now, I sit back and think to a time when things weren’t a struggle as they are now. I was more financially stable with the ex-husband, obviously. I often wonder how things could have gotten so bad, so quickly. And how things would have been if I had tried to stick around and fix things back then. I doubt anything would have come of it, but I know that I told that man that I have my days where I look back and think about how much I seem to be struggling and how I often blame the ending of our relationship. I remember, in that dream, he laughed. Anyone who knows him knows what his honest laughter is; this was honest laughter. Maybe he was laughing because he agreed with me or because he found my pinpointing for “when it all went wrong” amusing.

I don’t know.

I don’t remember.

Love of two is one
Here but now they’re gone
Came the last night of sadness
And it was clear she couldn’t go on

I wish I had more fertile remembrance of what our peace talks began as. The reality of what they began as doesn’t matter, though. They happened.

As I was driving to work today, I was thinking back on the dream and the utter peace it instilled within me. I felt like a part of me that had been working backwards, perhaps a bad cog or fear, was no longer working against all the infinitesimal parts of myself. Frowning, I looked down to my heart and did an inner search. I found that I wasn’t really all that far off with those thoughts. I went looking for my rage, then, and I didn’t find it. The entire bundle of ex-husband rage that I have been carrying alive within me for more than five years now seemed to have completely dissipated. I am completely unsure if this is something that only occurred today or if it was only today that I was allowed to realize it. It doesn’t matter. I began probing and probing and the bits of me that were rage were filled in, patched over, or just working the way they should be.

I recall now a moment when I was still in that coven of three. And I remember when the EM told me that I had so much rage that I could destroy so much and that was why there was so much fear of me working with Sekhmet. (How young and foolish we all were then.) I remember her telling me that I had to get the heat and the rage out. I had to work on the things that were fueling it and of course, we all knew that it was my ex-husband that was feeding that rage the most. The pain, the hate, and the anger that he instilled within me, I felt, was something that I would always carry around within my breast. But, as I searched for the telltale burn to the right of my heart, it was missing.

It was gone.

Then the door was open and the wind appeared
The candles blew then disappeared
The curtains flew then he appeared… saying don’t be afraid
Come on baby… and she had no fear
And she ran to him… then they started to fly

After realizing that my rage was gone, I felt pretty upset with myself for not realizing that this was happening. I’ve had signs and dreams of it. The thing is that I was really just sad that the rage was gone. I think that maybe confused or weird to some people. I’ll try to explain it.

The thing is that the rage has been with me for the better part of five years now. In the removal of that rage, I’ve actually opened a lot of scars up to being hit and touched. I let the rage I felt towards my ex-husband mold itself and hold fast to rages that I’ve been carrying around for a very long time. Parts of my rages against the ex-boyfriend from high school (who will be getting a post all his own) as well as parts of my rages against my father for abandoning me. There are other, smaller, rages that were a part of the rage ball I had built for myself around the angst with my ex-husband. In the removal of the large ball of rage I had towards him, I’ve opened myself to smoothing out other rages. Some of them have already been worked out, I just haven’t gotten around to posting about them. But some of them are still there.

I can feel them sliding around in my chest, trying to take a hold. I hope they don’t.

I don’t want to have to work as diligently as I have with the ex-husband thing with other parts of my life. The only one who could even remotely get anything from me now, I think, would be my dad. He deserves that rage and I have to realize that it is a just rage before I can work further with it. It doesn’t matter. Even though I had this ball of rage that filled me up and had taken over large aspects of who I was, I hope that I don’t let something new or something old fester in that now open spot.

They looked backward and said goodby… she had become like they are
She had taken his hand… she had become like they are
Come on baby… don’t fear the reaper

I find myself very tired now, as though I had been exercising for too much time and overdid it. In a way, I think that’s a fitting analogy. When you start to work on aspects of yourself, retrieving bits of yourself and your soul from others’ hands, you don’t realize how much work you will be putting into the project to hand. You think a few moments of light meditation and you will complete the project. This is far from the truth. The astral, the soul, and everything in between are all portions that require hard, hard work and a strong, stubborn countenance more often than not.

And a lot, a lot of tears.

“I Am Just as Fucked as You.”

Last night, I was looking for the right song to work to when I wrote about my next batch of shadow work. Nothing seemed to be working. Earlier in the evening, I had thought that I needed a more melancholy and morose song set to work to. It seemed to get me going when I would listen to songs that were intrinsically linked to my relationship with my ex-husband or that, after the fact, upon hearing them, described so much of what we had gone through or what I had gone through. It was only after the sixth depressing song came on – funny how we can get what we ask for when it’s something inconsequential like a sad batch of songs – that I realized that the depressing mood set wasn’t going to work. I wanted something angry because, for fuck’s sake, I was fucking angry.

And that’s when I realized that this particular shadow work wasn’t going to follow the same feel as the others I’ve done so far. This isn’t about trying to see him as a multifaceted human being. This particular batch isn’t about trying to explain how we were both wrong. In this portion, I’m not looking to sit down and say, “Here is where we fucked up, here is the reason why I screwed up and this is why I think he did.” Oh, no. This particular little section is about how motherfucking pissed off I am at the whole fucking situation. And that even years later, I can still feel my blood boil when I start to think about some of the really fucked up shit he both said and did to me.

You see, the two of us were just not good together, but some of the shit he did is completely inexcusable. These are the instances that I can clearly recall that just make me want to… punch something.

I know your life is empty
And you hate to face this world alone
So you’re searching for an angel
Someone who can make you whole
I can not save you
I can’t even save myself
So just save yourself


So, once upon a time, he dated a rape victim. Apparently, her experience was “more harrowing” than mine. He never really came right out and said that, but I felt like I wasn’t a “real” rape victim whenever he talked about this ex-girlfriend. I also felt that it was a rousing commentary on the state of society when you can go through your life and date two girls, in rapid succession, who have been the victims of sexual assaults. I didn’t think too much of the whole thing because, you know, why did I care about ex-girlfriends? Of course, he was probably using this to incite a riot of jealousy in me or merely because he’s a tactless douche a lot of time.

I’m going with B.

So, apparently, his one crowning achievement with this girl was that he evidently had given her the very first orgasm she had ever experienced. Now, I can’t say if it was her first one in her entire life or if it was her first one since her sexual assault. In either case, I have to wonder why I’m being told about this. I already felt like I wasn’t a “real” sexual assault victim when he first (A) mentioned her to me and then (B) explained in rapid-fire detail about how much “worse” her situation was to mine. Of course, I have to admit that he never came right out and said that my experiences were lesser than hers. It was just a generalized feeling in regards to the story. So, anyway, not only does he tell me about how he was so awesome with the orgasm, but I can’t help but wonder why the fuck he was telling me this.

Is that some big huge crowning achievement?

It’s not like I hadn’t had one of my own before. In fact, I can clearly recall multiples all over the fucking place with previous boyfriends as well as the one who had to tell me this pointless tale.
But, that was something that he mentioned to me repeatedly, so I’m assuming, he thought that by telling me this, it meant that he could make my body respond in ways that it should instead of my body shutting down because of some random trigger that could or could not happen. This happened early enough in our relationship (and then had repeated moments later whenever he wanted me to “try something new”) that I should have realized that he was a selfish dick bag right there.


I know that you’ve been damaged
Your soul has suffered such abuse
But I am not your savior
I am just as fucked as you
I am just as fucked as you
I can not save you
I can’t even save myself
So just save yourself

The cheating thing really pisses me off for a number of reasons. I rather feel like I’m being two-faced about this, though. I did, after all, give him permission to do so. I think the reason I get so pissed off about it is because I told him, implicitly, that I did not wish to know about his sexual conquests. But we lived on a small island and while no one flat-out said, “You know he’s fucking around behind your back,” you can just tell. I think it was the snotty, haughty looks his sexual conquests would give me if they saw the two of us together. You know how it is. You’re out with a group and then, a girl the guy slept with comes up and checks you from head to foot, making sure you’re all made up and dolled up nice so that they can see why it is he’s with you instead of them? Yeah. I got that look from two or three girls when we were living down south, so it was fairly obvious.

And then he always made sure to tell me how much he didn’t cheat on me when he would be away for fire school. I’m not an idiot. I talked with all the guys on the fire department and there was, maybe, one guy on the whole department who didn’t cheat on their significant other. It’s almost like you have to be a card-carrying cheater to get on the fire department or something. They would all go to the bar and then things would happen and then, they’d go home to their arm candy or their wife (because the two were not mutually exclusive) and that would be that. It was like, “Why are you telling me this? I already know you have sex with other vaginas. So, why do you have to pretty much lie to my face about it?”

But, the real big issue I have here is two-fold. One, he would buy me shit all the time to replace him in my affections. I got so much jewelry after he ended a torrid affair with someone. That’s how I got my dog, Jasmine. That’s why I was able to buy the camera that I wanted instead of settling for something less than what I wanted. I mean, there are other little instances where it’s just like, “Wow. Gee. Buying me off, are you?” And yet again, I often wonder if I have the right to be angry about it. I mean, I did tell him it was okay. Yeah, I said it in a fit of rage and whatnot, but the invitation was set out beneath his nose, so…

And yet again, another thing that really gets to me about this is that without fail, if you’re cheating on someone, then you tend to assume that the other person is cheating on you. And I’m one of those idiots that can be faithful until I figure it’s over and done with (whether I mention it to the other person in the relationship or not is an entirely different kettle of fish). So, I got accused, a lot, of sleeping around behind his back when I wasn’t. And how do you prove that you aren’t doing that? I honestly don’t know if he thought that I kept a love slave at work or something, but there were quite a few arguments that started because he insinuated I was sleeping with someone else.

And then there was the time when he told me that the fire chief told everyone that while I was claiming I had a boyfriend up north (you see, the ex-husband and I didn’t move together down to Texas; I went first and then he came down a month or two later), but I was obviously easy and looking for dick. And apparently, the fire chief felt the need to share this little tidbit with him over a couple of beers at one of the bars and then, man. Did I hear about that when he got home? It was fucking ridiculous. He was so stuck on his own cheating ass that he just assumed that not only I would do it, too, but that rumors that had no bearing on fact were true about me. And seriously? What the fuck would I get out of cheating on a fire fighter on a tiny fucking island where everyone would know within seconds?

For fucking serious, douche bag; how dumb do I look?

My life has been a nightmare
My soul is fractured to the bone
And if I must be lonely, I think I’d rather be alone
I think I’d rather be alone

Yet another issue that always pisses me off whenever I think about it is his ex-girlfriend. This is “the one that got away.” And he would always refer to her that way to the point where I ended up using that as her name instead of her real name because I couldn’t stand the bitch. And it wasn’t even that I couldn’t stand her because she was a complete whore to him and used him all over the place (pawned the platinum and diamond engagement ring to get to online boyfriend she was fucking behind his back; demanded that he take her to get an abortion after she had unprotected sex with him and her at-the-time boyfriend within the same day; called him up for booty calls while we were together; would make him jealous by talking about all the guys she fucked; and I’m pretty sure she got money out of him when she went into stripping to pay the bills and I think that money was given on a private donation basis, if you catch my drift). I honestly didn’t like her for the one year I knew of her in high school. Everyone thought she was just the cat’s meow and really, she was just a selfish whore.

He always threw her in my face whenever shit got bad or just because he was hoping I would get jealous and fuck him silly.

Like, seriously, what the hell does she have anything to do with what we’re doing? He told me when she would inform him that I was “using” him to get things. And I’m like, “Really? He gives them to me because he fucks dirty bitches behind my back. So, really, if anyone is being ‘used’ here, I think I have the right to that word and not him.” For example, the night that we broke up and decided to get divorced..? He went over to see her and didn’t come back until, like, four in the morning. And then, upon coming home, he immediately jumped into the shower before going up to bed. And it’s like, “Really, like I don’t know you just fucked your ex skank? How often were you doing that since we’ve up here and she has too?”

But, you know, I think what really pisses me off the most is the fact that I supported his every decision when it came to “what” he wanted to be. He decided to go back to school fairly early on when we were living down south, and I supported that. I helped him pay off the money he owed WNEC so that he could get his student loans reinstated. I helped him to pay off other bills that he accrued with his friends over band-related materials (like the sound system that he put on a credit card and never paid off). While he was in school to be a mathematician, and then a computer sciences major, I was there to hold down the fort. I made sure he had quiet time for homework and urged him to do something he absolutely loved as opposed to something that he only kind of liked (math versus computers). He ended up going with the one he could make more money on (computers).

And then, I supported him through every variation of fire school. That included all of the class time for becoming an EMT-basic. That included all the times he got to spend a week or two at College Station with hundreds of other fire fighters (who were “not” cheating on their wives back home) across the state. And that included when he decided to go for paramedic and had to drive to classes forty-five minutes away with his new side twat. And that included picking up shifts at the EMS base and making sure he made every fire call. That included when he failed to make all of his clinicals for paramedic and then moved us up north, lied about all of that, and had to shell out half of what was left in savings to get his national registry done for paramedic in MA even though he never actually made paramedic in Texas. And. And. And.

I never got a thank you. It was my job, I guess. But, I told him as a kind of way to get me back up north that he had to support me through my next foray into college. That meant that I would not work. That meant that I would focus entirely on school. And immediately, I had to get a job. And immediately, he wouldn’t help me with the homework he promised he would help me with. And that meant that I had to suck dick to get my car to take to school. And that meant a lot of things that pretty much account to the fact that what he had promised in return for all the hard work and support I gave him never came back to me because I shouldn’t have been in school again but relying solely on him for support.


I’m not sure when his 1950s version of what our marriage should be came around, but I can tell you, it didn’t go over well.

You can not save me
You can’t even save yourself
I can not save you
I can’t even save myself
Save yourself
So just save yourself

So, those are just some of the things that I’m still pissed off about. Never mind his crazy, scary stalker vibe. Never mind the fact that he would blow up my phone if he didn’t get a hold of me right away (even if I was in class). Never mind the fact that I was cheating on him throughout the entirety of our relationship, which is a falsehood. Never mind the time that I had to lock myself in my room to hide from him while he tried prying the door off its hinges to get at me and the Sister had to stop him from doing something crazy-stupid. Never mind the time he threatened both me and the Sister with a knife. Never mind the time that he turned over, sobbing, from a nightmare where he killed me – the same nightmare I had just woken up from, myself. Never mind the fact that I had to ask him to use the money in our account, even though it was our money. Never mind the fact that he wanted to turn me into some house bound motherfucking slave.

I guess you could say that I’m still pretty pissed off about all of that.

“High Off of Love; Drunk From My Hate.”

There comes a point in your life when you can stand back, slightly removed from the past, and see all of the things that you’ve been ignoring. You can see the subtle maneuvers of fate and decisions come together to make things into what they ended up. It’s in those moments, which can be either few or often, that you begin to wonder what it is that made you do the things you did. This isn’t always the case, of course. Some moments you’re just so busy wondering what was going through their heads and the desire to see what their fate and their decisions were that causes you to muck up the progress. I’ve been wading through the mud and the shit-slinging. It’s time to open up this particular wound and let it bleed out.

I first met my ex-husband through a guy I was seeing at the time. They were best friends. I’ve talked about in him various outlets before. Most people who have been following this blog know him as Demon Boy or Void Boy. Yes, before he fucked over the Sister in ways unimaginable, I was with him. This was actually before he went completely insane. (He was kind of nuts, but not fully down that road yet.) I liked hanging out with Void Boy. It was freeing and exhilarating for reasons I won’t get into. I liked the man who I would one day marry from the get-go. He had [legit] fangs. He wore a leather jacket. He was fixing his big ass Chevy Blazer when I first met him. His hair was buzzed short and his eyes were a green-blue. He was sexy as hell. I wanted him almost immediately, but I was trying to be serious with VB. What I didn’t seem to realize at that point was that VB was not serious about me. So, maybe, I got him back a little…

…by spending time with his best friend and the one guy who could always incite his jealousy to riot.

In a way, I was doing it because I was hoping to get a reaction out of VB. I was also doing to fly in the face of convention. Some days, I sit around and just think that I was experimenting with a whore phase. In other moments, I tend to think that I was just hoping someone would step forward and say that I mattered in some way. What it really comes down to, in all honesty, is a complete lack of self-esteem. I was so low at that point that I would have done a lot to get attention, in any way, even if it meant that I had to use my body to do it. Not as a kind of excuse or anything, but when I met VB and my future ex-husband, I had been raped only two years prior to that and it hadn’t even been a year since I had been molested in my sleep by someone I considered a close friend. (One day, we’ll discuss those things, but today isn’t it.) So, I had very little to no self-esteem after going through a trial and after being asked to go through a second one and being unable to. I was suffering in other ways due to low self-esteem, which all actually had everything to do with both of those sexual assaults. I’ve always had low self-esteem (for whatever reason) but the lowest of the low points for me are intrinsically tied to the sexual assaults and the aftermath after both.

But, those few months where the man I would marry and I would sneak around behind his best friend’s back were some of the best months of my life. I know that sounds seriously fucked up. I wasn’t technically serious with VB or anything, but I was seeing his best friend without telling him? There’s more to that story, but it’s neither here nor there. The rest has no bearing unless I get into other things later. What matters now is that I felt very much at peace and myself when I was with MEH. After a split-second decision, I ended up with VB on a semi-permanent basis for a while. That didn’t last very long and neither did the next guy. I ended up going back to MEH on a spur of a moment thing. He used to call me when I was with the guy after VB for a booty call at like two in the morning, on his way back from the bar or something. I always turned him down. When I finally was free to do whomever or whatever I wanted, I went right back to the guy who made me feel like I could be anyone when I was around him.

The actual decision I made to head back in the direction of my future ex-husband actually had little to do with him or the freedom I felt when I was with him. I wasn’t quite so intent on my own happiness. I was feeling low (sound familiar) and I wanted some comfort. At this point, I was beginning to associate sex with comfort. I was also bored and tired and sad. I wanted to get back at VB for something (I honestly don’t remember what) and I knew that hanging out with his best friend would set him in a rile. Either I was trying to get a reaction out of VB because I was hoping he would get serious, for once, or I was just missing out on high school drama. I honestly don’t know what the real reason behind all that was. The point is that I ended up going to hang out with my future ex-husband at a party… and just didn’t leave.

It wasn’t supposed to be serious or anything, but you know, I opened up. I told him how I felt about it all. I told him about the situation with VB. I told him about how I was feeling old and prickly. I told him about how I felt washed up, used up, and that I was probably going to die from alcohol poisoning one day. (I was an active alcoholic in high school and continued, with brief spurts of being sober, into my first forays at college.) And he was just there to help me pick up the pieces. A sort of way station of sorts, but the thing is that fate and past lives have more sway than I’m willing to admit. And, too, I had a possible relationship starting with someone who I knew I was sexually compatible with. And you know, the past life thing.

I can’t tell you what it really is
I can only tell you what it feels like
And right now it’s a steel knife in my windpipe
I can’t breathe but I still fight while I can fight
As long as the wrong feels right it’s like I’m in flight

When we lived together in Easthampton, we didn’t really fight. Oh, we had them. It wasn’t… big. They were minor. They were most caused because of lack of sleep or my being bitchy for whatever reason. Sometimes, our fights were based off some of the most inane moments I can clearly recall. I don’t think he ever understood that I was just entirely insecure. I still am, but I was very, very insecure because of the sexual assaults and because of the fact that I had managed to choose really bad guys for me before. Not to say anything negative about my mom here, but she told me that this one wouldn’t work out any better than any of the rest. I mention this because it has resounding effects later and because it was part of my own insecurity – my mother was just voicing it aloud.

The thing is that I wanted him to bundle me up and hold me and tell me that he would always take care of me. It wasn’t that I didn’t want a cohesive bond, but I was beginning to associate relationships – like real, adult relationships – with a 1950s mindset. I honestly don’t know why or how got me started in that. I still have issues with this, to this day, but I don’t know where it stems from. It’s possible, armchair psychology moment here, that it stems from watching my mother struggle after the death of my father and never wanting to end up like that. But, for whatever reason, I was beginning to see this relationship as going further than the others and that he would just… take care of me.

The thing is that while I was still very young and immature, so was he. He put on a very good act about being “a grown up.” I’m not denying that he wasn’t more mature than I am in quite a few arenas. He had been living on his own since he was seventeen and had been able to keep his head [nominally] straight while his family fell apart. But he didn’t understand what I needed anymore than I understood what I needed at the time. I needed a strong, sexy Prince Charming to bundle me up tight as though I were a piece of fragile glass and protect me. If that meant that he needed to protect me from myself, then we would have issues, but he needed to protect me from the evils and hurts that had placed bags beneath my eyes and had given me a prickly exterior and had put wisdom in the depths of my eyes that shouldn’t have been there at eighteen.

I started off well in our relationship. By well, I mean that I started off with things working almost as clearly and easily as I thought they should be. As I said, we fought about stupid things but it was all right. He asked me to marry him fairly early on. I was given a beautiful sapphire engagement ring. I loved that ring. But it didn’t take long before I began to near the precipice of my own insecurities and failures. If you ask my ex-husband, he will tell you that this push towards disaster was because of the people I associated with. They were inferior and wrong. They were not people he would have chosen for me. If you ask me, I would say that it was just me finally letting my insecurities, my fears, and my pain catching up with me after pretending that everything was going smoothly. It really doesn’t matter what the reason – I ended up drinking heavily to the point where, one night, I had to go to the hospital.

We ended up moving to Texas shortly thereafter.

High off of love, drunk from my hate,
It’s like I’m huffing paint and I love it the more I suffer, I suffocate
And right before I’m about to drown, she resuscitate me
She fucking hates me and I love it.

Things started off at the same even keel that they had been when the ex-husband and I first moved in together. It was like we were using this as a fresh start together. We didn’t have his family squabbles to contend with. We were starting over. I really tried to think of my moving to Texas as a fresh start, but the thing is that the same old things started to crop up. It wasn’t so much that I still needed or desired him to take care of me. I think the basis for most of the shit that ended up going on in Texas was that I did a complete 180 on things. I went from the needing to be cherished and protected and cared for that I had initially decided I needed to somehow magically fix the pain I was still feeling to thinking that I needed a full on, one hundred percent fresh start and having my ex-husband around was a glaring indicator that I had past actions that I was not proud of – namely, how we initially started seeing one another and the stuff I did when I was with VB – and I couldn’t let them go with him around. It’s not like I could verbalize any of this anyway.

I ended up having my first and only blackout while we lived down in Texas. This is what started me on my 180. With this complete change, I went from not caring to caring too much. My emotions were at a higher surface than they had been in years past. I had suppressed them so that I could have sex and have fun and move on without feeling like a dirty, used up whore. The drinking, I think, suppressed all of this in a way that I hadn’t ever realized. So, along with my no longer drinking, we no longer had sex. At one point, when he tried, I freaked out so badly that I told him I didn’t care that we weren’t ever having sex again and he could fuck whoever he wanted with my full consent as long as I didn’t know about it. Our relationship had gone from a tumble off the cliff to a plummeting to its death. We just hadn’t realized that and wouldn’t for some time yet.

Wait! Where you going?
“I’m leaving you”
No you ain’t. Come back we’re running right back.
Here we go again

He took my suggestion to heart. I don’t know when the cheating started. I’ve often felt conflicted about this in a way that I can’t quite understand. How is it cheating if I technically gave him permission to do so? It’s not that my ex-husband took what I said to heart or at face value. The thing is that I had told him time and time again that I could not and would not have sex. I was frozen in this asexual hell hole I’m actually currently in. And no matter what I said or did or thought or dreamed, I could not break out of it. As anyone who knows anything about men, when they’re in they are in their 20s, they are highly sexual creatures. I was effectively asking him to be celibate with me. And I think he wanted it in the same way that I wanted it. We were so tied to one another by this point and not just because of life experiences that we had gone to together. I think this is when it becomes more and more prominent just how completely tied together we were via our past lives together. He disgusted me. I probably disgusted him. It doesn’t matter.

Our fights had gotten fairly bad. I was trying very hard to keep them quiet, but I’m not fooling myself when I say that we managed to keep them under wraps. They would get so bad that we would both go around and destroy one another’s things. I had broken CDS and DVDs and books of his; he followed with like courtesy. There were a lot of times when I said that I wanted it to be over and I’ve talked about that time when he was visiting his parents and I had tried to end it then. I think what it really came down to, on both of our parts, was a multifold thing. We didn’t want to fail at yet another relationship. We wanted to be able to say that we weathered the storm. We wanted to be able to laugh uproariously in our old age about all the shit we did “in our youth.” But what it really comes down to is that we were both scared of what it would be like to have to start all over again. I’ve dreamed, a time or six, about what it would be like to live on my own without any help from anyone. I’ve never actually had this and neither had he. We weren’t read to separate.

Our souls were entwined, too, by this point. It wasn’t just the fights and the things he tried to help me with or the things that I tried to help him with. There was an all-pervasive need and desire to be together. It wasn’t just the people who told us that we wouldn’t succeed or anything, but we just felt that being apart… we were less than we were together. And in a manner of speaking that is the truth. Two is greater than one. But our souls had entwined by this point to where there were moments where the thought of leaving, on either our parts, would make it hurt so badly that we would literally be curled into balls with the pain. I watched him go through that. I felt it myself. As much as we both wanted to stop all of the insanity we were incurring in our lives, we physically couldn’t do it. It was impossible.

To be continued…

“I Love You; I Hate You; I Can’t Live Without You…”

Note: All lyrics are taken from here.

I’ve read from others about how the gods or spirits or whomever can play around with the shuffle features on various iPods and radio lists. I’ve never had this happen to me before. That isn’t because I didn’t want it to happen in so much as I didn’t have a place to go and listen to music. (I am really not that technologically advanced. My laptop is from 2008.) If I wanted to listen to music, I tended to just YouTube it and watch the videos or have songs that I selected playing in the background. Today, though, I finally downloaded the Pandora app for my new tablet and let it go to town. I ended up choosing a Shinedown station to listen to and went about my business. Now, really, if you know Shinedown then the song that I’m getting ready to discuss isn’t going to be so shocking in the fact that it came up. The happenstance here is the fact that prior and after this particular song, numerous songs reminding me of my ex-husband in some capacity or another – their having come out when we first got together or having been ballads to discuss our relationship in some form or another – kept coming on. The one that threw me for a loop was Always by Saliva.

I remember when this song came out. I believe I had just moved into the ex-husband’s apartment. I was jobless. I was trying to find something that I could do, but I wasn’t actually trying. I would sit at home and stew while he and his best friend went off to work all day. I believe it was the height of fall when the song came out, or at least it was when I liked it best. I can remember having the song stuck in my head on a fairly regular basis, or just letting it blast from the speakers with the windows wide open while I let in the beautiful fresh breath of chill breezes in the middle of autumn. I can remember the smell of the leaves as they frolicked across the sidewalk and I can remember the intense feelings this song arose in me. And what makes it all the more bittersweet is that if I had been paying attention to my instincts, which I never did a single lick of while we were together anyway, I could have possibly stopped the horrible horror of our relationship.

Unfortunately, when you end up in a relationship where shit is fated and tends to repeat over and over again in various lives, you may not really have much of a choice about how shit plays out. Maybe if I had just been more aware… but while I’m sitting here and writing this whole, “maybe if,” I can’t help but remind myself that just because people can see the future doesn’t mean that they can change it. In some cases, it can be truly and willfully fated – there is no way to change the events. There are ways to influence and connive and blunt the sharpness of it all, but you have to be really gifted, me thinks, to get that going. And back then, I was little more than a child. I had all the gifts of a baby realizing that those things that flail around in front of me are actually body parts attached to me. (If you’ve never had children or been around children who discover their hands or feet for the first time, you are missing out on a truly magical and amusing time.) There was no way I could actually achieve the goal of blunting anything, much less escaping from the havoc of replaying the same old shit in a different life.

I hear a voice say, “don’t be so blind.”
It’s telling me all these things
That you would probably hide
Am I your one and only desire?
Am I the reason you breathe?
Or am I the reason you cry?

Often, you will hear me discuss our relationship as “bad in general.” This isn’t actually the case. Most of the time, I say this to explain that things were just never very good between the two of us. There were a lot of fights and a lot of anger. I can remember some of our fights getting so explosive that we would destroy one another’s things since neither one of us would attack the other. Yes, it was that bad. But when I think about the relationship and I go on about how horrible things are, I tend to give other things the injustice. It wasn’t all bad.

Recently, I was talking with the Sister about her past relationship with a certain someone. She told me that she’s begun shadow work to remove that kind of shit from her. She was approaching her primary goddess, Aphrodite, and asked to help heal all the hate from that relationship. Whatever ended up happening, the moral of the story is that a goddess told her that everything wasn’t all bad. Everything wasn’t all tears and pain. She had to mourn the one to mourn the other, I believe is what she was told precisely. The second she said that to me, I started having my version of a panic attack. (And if she reads this, she’ll claim I was not having a panic attack, but I was. I was.)

I talk about my relationship with my ex-husband in the form of absolutes. It was absolutely this and it was absolutely that. Unfortunately, when we talk about things in absolutes, we forget that reality is actually shades of gray. My relationship with my ex-husband was gray scale like everything else. Perhaps it had more darker shading than some other relationships I have been in and have ended in the past, but it was still done in shades of gray.

I just can’t live without you
I love you, I hate you
I can’t get around you
I breathe you, I taste you
I can’t live without you

He took me horse back riding on the beach. He took me to a really expensive inn to “get away” for the weekend. We were only in the next town over, but it was still really romantic (in principle). He had no problem explaining things like the Golden Ratio to me over and over again, knowing that I never fully understood what it was he was talking to me about but trying nonetheless. (If he hadn’t succumbed to financial and outside pressures, he would have been a math major. He wrote a mathematical theory in high school.) He came and “rescued” BFTX and I when two males followed us from bar to bar to bar on our girl’s night out. He never commented on the relationship I had with my mother, whether it was negative or otherwise. He pushed me to write all the time. He let me watch television and never complained when I was watching my City Confidential marathons. He didn’t make fun of me when I told him I kind of liked to watch InuYasha on Adult Swim late at night. He bought me my Jasmine.

I just can’t take anymore
This life of solitude
I guess that I’m out the door
And now I’m done with you

One of the things that we, as humans, do is make everything in terms of black-and-white sketches. We look to our past with a single, narrowed viewpoint. I think we do this to save ourselves the humiliation of choices gone wrong. I think we also do this because we want to absolve ourselves of any guilt in any negative situations. I’d like to say that I was guilt-free when it came to what happened in my marriage. This isn’t the case. I haven’t quite reconciled myself as the person my ex-husband probably views me as and comments on now. (If he comments at all.)

I tend to still remark that I was “quite young” at the time. This is an able excuse – we hear it all the time when eighteen-year-olds get married and then end up divorcing a short time later. It’s not just that. We forget that these people, and myself included here, had raging emotions at the time. They were a confused muddle. I remember what it was like just shotgunning my wedding in less than a day. (We actually had to get a special dispensation to get married because, standard, you’re supposed to wait three days from the second you sign up for the license to the day you get marred in case there are any “regrets.” Unless the SO is in the military.) I was confused and excited and nervous and scared and worried and sad and angry and happy and thrilled. How do you pick apart those threads at any age? Even today, I have a hard time separating out what emotions are raging inside of me at any given moment. And while I wasn’t exactly eighteen when we got married, I was still young and new and childlike in my naïveté. I was pretty aware that I was probably making a mistake, but it was mine to make.

A lesson learned, I suppose, and a little too learned. I see myself as keeping quite the distance from marriage for a good deal longer than I tend to realize. In fact, I don’t really see myself as getting remarried again, even though technically, TH and I are engaged and have been for years.

I feel like you don’t want me around
I guess I’ll pack all my things
I guess I’ll see you around
It’s all been bottled up until now
As I walk out your door
All I can hear is the sound

On so many different occasions, I told him it was over. I can clearly remember saying this to him half a dozen times during the nearly six years we were together. In the grand scheme of things, six years isn’t too long. But at least once a year, I talked about ending it and he always talked me out of it. I often wonder if it was like that in the other lives that we were living together. I often wonder if I tried to leave but it just never ended up working out the way it was supposed to. I’m not saying that my ex-husband is conniving, in so much as he knew how to push the right buttons to get what he wanted. While I do admit that I had as much failing in all of this as he did, I can say that while I’m manipulative, I paled in comparison to my ex. He just always knew the right thing to say. I can clearly remember the one time when I thought I would get away just about scot-free. He was up north, visiting his family and I was down in Texas. And I could feel the relief at the thought of being able to end it and just mail him back his things, piece meal.

Obviously, that didn’t happen. (We got married not long after this episode, so…)

I left my head around your heart
Why would you tear my world apart?
Always, always, always, always

Sometimes, I sit up and I look around, trying to figure out what it was that kept me with him. In those moments, I look around for a clear indicator at what it was that was keeping me holed up in the tiny box I wanted to place myself in. Let’s be completely clear here: I was in a box. It was a bit of his design and a bit of mine, but I was in there. I often wonder if it was just a comfort zone thing. I was terrified of being on my own and I still am. I am serial monogamous in my relationships. I jump from relationship to relationship, but they are always long term. So, I occasionally decide that it was just fear of the unknown that inhibiting me. In other cases, I just decide that I was being young and silly. And in other moments, I decide he was a master manipulator. I probably won’t ever be able to clearly figure out what it was that kept us together…

…except that I tend to get stopped up when I remember we’ve danced this dance in so many different lives together.

And how many of those lives ended with me running for my life?

When I remember how many lives we’ve played this game, I tend to think that it’s all just the lessons I harp on about. I know people are probably tired of hearing all that drivel, but it feels like the gods’ honest truth. I feel like I had no choice. I had to keep repeating it over and over again until I figured out where it was going wrong. It’s not so much the why here that is the most important aspect. While I would love to know what it was that kept attracting us to one another in various lives, it’s really just background noise. It’s not worth the time and energy to put into the why. We, humans, spend all of our time trying to figure out the why about things that we tend not to realize how much energy we put into the question. It’s not worth all those spoons, as evidenced by how draining the experience of pondering why can be.

The only thing I want to know is when I’ll realize the ultimate lesson: that it’s officially over. In the mean time, shadow work… here I come.

I just can’t take anymore
This life of solitude
I pick myself off the floor
And now I’m done with you

Everything Will be Wonderful, Someday.

The title is a quote from the song, Wonderful by Everclear.

Things have been pretty difficult for me lately. I’ve gone through a very long, long period where I focused almost exclusively on my spiritual and religious life. It was the driving force after my firing from my last job. It was something that gave me solace during a very dark and dreary time, while I was fighting with the company for my unemployment for so long and having to contend with all manner of mundane things that I’d rather not go into here. The thing is that I’ve had to realize that I’m not as focused on it as I once was. The work on fixing who I am and what I want to be is at a near stand-still with all of the mundane things going on. I hardly update this blog with things any more, even though I have ideas… they’re just difficult to get out. It was only today that I realized how heavily depressed I’m feeling – with the culmination of calling my mommy to make me feel better – without the strength of contact with my spiritual shenanigans.

I realized how long it had been since I sat down in front of Hekate’s altar. I go through the motions, though. I stop off and look at her now and again. I do the same with the main altar that houses Sekhmet, Legba, and Hetharu. I give those three their daily offerings, although I don’t say anything to them. It’s just the repetition that I’m used to, so it feels off somehow if I don’t do those things. I get the ladies their water. I get him his coffee. I work through my day and I hardly stop to connect or communicate. It’s not that I don’t want to but that I’m so busy going through the motions and contending with all the absolute shit that is my mundane life. I don’t have the time or the energy. I feel so drained now and it’s only eight o’clock… and the kicker is that I napped earlier!

So, realizing how drained I am and how completely upset I am by all the mundane and how I’m not as intent in my spirituality, I sat down in front of Hekate this evening. It’s the first time in three days. I said I was sorry, but I got the impression that she understood. She is, after all, watching me in some way or another. She may not be watching all the time but I’ve talked to her about the mundane shit – not often, but when the pressure is overwhelming – so she’s aware of all the shit I have going on at home. So, I sat down and I said I was sorry and it felt like that was all right. She’s waiting on something from me, although I’m not sure what. (I’m wondering if it’s the turning of the star bottle into a witch’s bottle or me finding something that she may want daily… Booze, maybe?) That wasn’t the point to all of this, though. It wasn’t figuring out what she wanted or what I had to do, but to figure out why this mundane pressure is all over me.

You know what she said?

Things are cycles. Everything is in a cycle. You’ve spent nearly a year working diligently on various projects of a spiritual or religious nature. You’ve completely ignored the mundane and spent most of these last few months in the clouds. That’s why the astral was so close to you not that long ago. You were on the verge, but everything is a cycle. This world, the next world, my world. Everything. It’s time to deal with the mundane cycle, as much as it sucks. Otherwise, the pressure will build and you’ll explode before you can deal with what you need to deal with to get back on track.

And that’s when I heard the lyrics in my head from Everclear. (It’s one of my favorite bands and I blast their best hits endlessly in the car.) That’s when I realized that someday, everything will be wonderful.