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There are only people.

Every category that you could classify someone under has different spectrums within it. This is why it becomes so difficult to assign identities to groups. 

It is common for younger generations to throw hate toward elder generations, simply because the majority of the “boomer” population have similar views and prejudgements about the younger generations. But there is still a reason why it is also sort of a… trope, if you will, that elders are wise. But it has nothing to do with the physical age of their body.

Have you ever heard of someone referred to as an “old soul?” It’s usually used to describe young people who have a distinct wisdom in their ways. Like my son, for example. The things that he said and the ways that his beautiful mind worked, everyone could tell that he wasn’t a child on the inside. And sadly, he died before his time, but had he lived, he would have aged into what people may refer to as a “wiseman.”

When he learned of his diagnosis, he handled it with more grace and more stability than anyone I have ever known. He didn’t cry. Occasionally, he would have spells of rage, but those were only brought on by the steroid that they used to keep the swelling down in his head. Once his body was used to the medications, he became just this old little young little man with wisdom and serenity that I wish more than anything I could be. He was and still is an inspiration to anyone who hears the stories we tell about him. 

We never saw him show any indication that he was sad. He stayed strong, and he fought to survive with every last ounce of strength he had left until his brain literally could not function to keep him alive anymore. Human bodies are so fragile and pathetic. But his soul was far from. Even in the days and weeks and months leading up to his death, despite the suffering pain of being immobilized and fed through a tube, he continued to indicate that he wanted to continue the fight. I fought against doctors and ethic boards and family members and even myself sometimes, but I never gave up because he never did. 

Even when he could no longer use words, he found ways to communicate with me. I would ask him if he was ready to go, and he wouldn’t answer. But when I asked if he wanted to keep fighting, he would squeeze my hand and attempt to vocalize, even if it was a grunt. So, even though I was chastised for “prolonging his suffering,” and even though sometimes I catch myself wondering if I did the right thing, I always come back to the fact that I only did what he wanted. And I knew him well enough to know that that’s what he wanted. I fought for him, and Nebraska’s medical staff did not. The medical staff who are fucking around with Covid-19 like it’s just some sort of spoken curse than you can avoid by covering your eyes and ears and humming. But it isn’t. And they know it isn’t. And they knew that there were different things that we could have tried that would have helped buy him more time. But they refused those things. And whether it was over money or because they simply thought they knew what was best for him when what was really best was simply to respect his wishes, the point is, they were wrong. Money isn’t worth a human life. And taking away someone’s right to try to spend as much time alive as possible, even if that time is painful, is the same as murder. 

Again, I say that if you think you can force anyone to die because of what you think is right, then you absolutely must not stop those who are suffering from choosing when they are ready to stop it. The right thing to do in life or death situations is obey the choice of the person whose life is at stake. It is their right to decide. Do not treat others the way you want to be treated. Treat them how they want to be treated. And rest assured that you have done the right thing.

When I began this entry, I had originally come to talk about identity and what it means to be unique and why labels are a double-edged blade. But since it has seemed to digress into a different direction, I will instead send this one off with a new title and come back again later to revisit my initial topic. 

At the bottom of it all, I want to say that you can be pro-life without not being pro-choice. Sometimes pro-life is pro-choice. And if you’re thinking about ending your life, please at least do the following:

-Give the decision some very deep and scrutinous thought before you really make your move.

-Do not leave any loose threads. Get everything squared up and away so that you aren’t leaving anyone with the burden of your unfinished business. 

-Write an essay, record a video, do a podcast. Whatever medium you choose is fine, but you need to explain your reasoning. Don’t leave anyone wondering why you chose to do it, and don’t leave anyone with the burden of thinking that it was their fault. Express your feelings as transparently as possible. Acknowledge the pain that you will likely cause, but do not discount your own feelings either. 

It is my personal belief that physical death is not game over. The things that make death a terrifying and painful ordeal are the ambiguity of the unknown and the time spent waiting to find out. We will all get there eventually. So all we can do is accept it and look forward to it. The unknown doesn’t have to be scary. It can be exciting and exhilarating. It’s the ability to let go and try something new. All you need is the trust that when you leave your body, you will not lose your consciousness. That consciousness is what it means to exist. And while science may tell you that, to some degree, your body dictates your consciousness, consider the following:

Memories come and go. Sometimes, something that you thought you had completely forgotten returns very suddenly, and then you can’t possibly imagine how you could have forgotten it. Think of our brains like hard drives. There is only so much space for information storage. So what do we do when our computers can no longer hold the information? We upload it to the “cloud.” It can still be accessed from anywhere in time and space as long as you have the passcode. Files can be shuffled around and traded off to save space and are only dowloaded again when they are needed. Maybe each time you recall a long-lost memory, you also send an unnecessary one back to the cloud until it becomes necessary again. And maybe once your hard drive stops working, you pack up the remaining files and escape to the cloud to keep them safe.
Perhaps you meet up with some of the consciousnesses that you enjoyed time with, or maybe you find out that there are only maybe a handful of consciousnesses and you all channel yourselves into life as we know it, for fun, sort of like a video game.

Or maybe you find out that it’s just you. And all of existence was just a thing you made to occupy yourself.

You won’t know until you get there. But while you’re here, make the most of it. And when it’s time to go, embark on the next stage of your journey with serenity and grace. Prepare for the worst, but hope for the best. And expect that it will meet somewhere in between.

Featured

A Symple Thot

If you ever feel like your identity is being attacked by someone, try to remember this:
Most people try to avoid conflict at all cost, because conflict causes anxiety. So it is almost certain that if someone makes you feel invalid, it’s because they are feeling the exact same way. If you hate feeling like that, don’t make someone else feel that way.
Say how you feel if you must, but don’t be mean. Feelings are feelings. Everyone’s feelings are unique. It’s part of who they are. Focus less on the things that make them different, and redirect your attention to the things that unite you.
Everyone is a hypocrite at some point or other. But we are constantly growing and changing. Every moment is a new experience, and a chance to learn and grow. By the time you read this message, the person who wrote it will be long gone. But it’s okay. Because I am constantly being replaced with newer, more updated versions of myself.
It’s called being human. People can change. And they do. Some just take longer than others. So don’t stop taking chances on people. It’s better to have friends than enemies. One day they will wake up and feel completely removed from the person they were when you knew them last.
Wouldn’t you want another chance to disprove the idea that you’re a garbage person? Everyone does. So just relax. We’re in this together, for better or worse.

Dance, monkey, dance.

Over 6 months of test receipts (many missing, even)

In a few weeks, it will be the anniversary of the incident that ruined my life. After all this time, I am still left with only vague, spotty memories of what happened and only working theories about why it happened. I know that at this point, the why matters very little, but it would really help for my own peace of mind to know why things happened the way they did.

My current best theory (after finding evidence of similar occurrences in other patients under the same conditions) is that I missed days of doses of a certain medication. The medication requires tapering on and off. I was tapered all the way up to 150mg when I abruptly (and unintentionally) stopped taking it. This can cause psychotic breaks. It is possible and probable that the self medication exacerbated that problem. The hospital immediately started me straight back onto 150mg again without tapering, and from there, I was on and off with it, pleading to be allowed to stop, as I didn’t like how it was making me feel, and thus, for a few months after, I was still not entirely myself.

That’s my best theory on the why, though it hardly matters. What should matter is the massive stack of papers from over six months of negative drug tests. The months of therapy and progress. The completion of every task ordered of me by the courts and those involved. For the past year, I have done nothing but comply with orders. I have been obedient in every way under the pretense that my compliance was how I would get my daughter back.

Now I’ve been told that custody isn’t an option. I literally cannot get her back. And what’s more, I’ve been informed that I will be expected to pay child support. After all the work I’ve done to fight for my child, this is what it’s coming down to. Expected to pay to have my child taken. The child I spent nine months creating inside my body and painfully birthed. And I have to pay money to never see her again.

Child support should be reserved for garbage parents who willingly walk away from their child’s life to avoid responsibility. Not for loving parents who fought their ass off for their child, only to have all the fighting be not good enough for the people involved with the case.

This will completely ruin my life. Not only will I be refused the right to participate in my daughter’s life, but I will have to pay money to be denied that right, which will in turn ensure that I will never be able to move out of my mom’s house, as I will not be able to afford rent/mortgage payments plus bills, gas, food, etc.

I cannot express the way I feel. To have my entire life and future destroyed over a one-time incident that wasn’t even entirely in my control, but was probably brought on by a long chain of events that started with losing my son and my home and being denied the help that I was actively trying to get… Now I’ve lost the love of my life and will be losing my daughter as well. And all because I was a victim of circumstance.

I didn’t really want any of it. And in being denied help and only getting fed garbage medications that just made me feel worse, I had to make a decision. And I’m sorry that it was the wrong decision, truly I am, but I’m not sorry that I made a decision to try to help myself. I know now that it was the wrong decision. Shouldn’t that be enough? Should I really be forced to suffer the entire rest of my life simply for doing the only thing in my power to try to be better?

No one was hurt. Especially not my child. I was able to love her and do things with her and comfort her when she needed it, which was not something I was able to do when I was emotionally exhausted and sleeping 16 hours a day. The incident and whatever caused it was not directed at her in any way. I was not hostile or violent toward her. And the only reason I was “violent” toward her dad (if you consider tossing an iPad and a MacBook to be violent) was because he came in and started harassing me and wouldn’t leave when I asked. I have very few memories of what happened those terrible few days, but I do remember that. Because the police wouldn’t arrest me if I wasn’t violent, and so “violence” was instigated.

If that one choice hadn’t been made… either by him to instigate violence, or by me to get him to leave and stop harassing me by any means necessary… then I wouldn’t be in this terrible nightmare scenario. I just wanted to go to sleep.

I wish so much that I had. I wish that I’d fallen asleep before he came in. Or any of the days prior. Why wasn’t I able to sleep for three days? Again, the why is not important anymore. What is important is that nothing even similar ever happened before or after since that single, isolated incident. What is important that I’ve worked hard and fought hard for the last year to prove myself to be a fit parent and a decent human being. What is important is that I love my daughter more than life and would do anything for her.

At least, those things should be important, if those working on the case were truly honest when telling me that all my efforts were to get my child back. Unfortunately, it was all lies. I suspected as much from the beginning, but they continued to reassure me that all they wanted was my success and that their goal was reunification. And maybe the reunification bit was where the deceit was. They wanted to reunify her, yes. Just… not with me, as I’m finding out.

Meanwhile, other forces are at work to destroy what life I have left, but I’m not at liberty to discuss those things publicly.

There isn’t much I can do anymore. I’m powerless and defeated. I can’t even hope for anything at this point. There’s nothing left to hope for. It’s all gone.

I’m sorry.

I thought really long and hard before deciding to actually post this because I didn’t want it to seem like an off-handed decision with no weight behind it. And when I say long and hard, I mean that for months, I kept coming back to the thought on an almost (if not) daily basis.
The truth is that I don’t feel like I can pursue art and music anymore. I know I’ve said similar things in the past during struggles without really thinking it through, but this has been on my mind for months as my ability to adequately produce anything of value began to deteriorate more and more. Throughout my life, I’ve gone through periods of art/writer’s block, but it never seemed as permanent as this. At worst, it might have lasted a couple of months before breaking through to a streak of intense creativity.
This is not one of those times.
It has been nearly a year since the incident, and there have been very few happinesses for me in all that time. Generally, I tend to create my best work during my darkest times, but I’ve come to realize that this was mostly due to having people in my life whose presence enabled me to make it through and fight to create another day.
It’s not like that anymore. The three people who cared most about me and never failed to inspire, comfort, and support me have either died, deserted me, or are forbidden from being near me outside of 9 collective hours per week during heavy supervision. I’ve watched my talents crumble and rot within the last year, and it hasn’t been from lack of practice. It’s a pure lack of the ability to get my heart into it. I know I’ve let a lot of people down who were expecting me to help them out with collaborations and the like, and I can’t begin to express how disgusted I feel with myself for failing people who believed in me. Please believe me when I tell you that it’s not because I’m lazy or that I didn’t want to help you. There’s a hole in my soul that has grown much larger since this time last year, and it exists in the same part that my creativity stems from.
I learned recently that PTSD is a form of brain damage and come to find out, it’s not really terribly surprising. If there is damage to the part of my brain that allows me to think creatively and take pleasure in creating, then it makes perfect sense that all of my abilities would crumble and wither away the longer this drags on.
Because that is one of the major problems interfering with my ability to create: it is no longer pleasurable. It’s just work, and when I’m aware that my work is coming out like trash, it further hampers any possibility for finding pleasure in doing it. A job well done is a job worth doing. A job done poorly isn’t worth the time and effort it takes to do it. And I don’t just mean my time, I mean yours as well. You, the people viewing/listening to it. You, the people waiting on a contribution to your own work. All of you. My work is not worth anyone’s time anymore.
And so it is with a heavy heart that I must announce my resignation from anything at all artistic for the foreseeable future, if not permanently. I know that this is a huge let down for the few people who supported my comic book that I absolutely promised I’d never give up on. It was never my intention to stop working on it, but at this point it’s really not living up to its former glory, and has just been a really sad shell of its former self. I can’t justify continuing it in this way.
Finally, the other major factor in my decision is that I have literally no chance of ever getting released from this nightmarish chapter of my life unless I give up on who I am in order to pursue a more “normal” lifestyle that will be better accepted by people who, while mattering very little to me personally, matter a great deal when it comes to paying the ransom upon my life. It is a ransom that cannot be paid with money, only action, and they do not care who it affects and how, as long as they get what they want.
For what it’s worth, I truly am sorry. I honestly never wanted any of this, and I wish to god I could change the past. But that kind of thinking is only going to cast me in the wrong sort of light, so… I’ll just say what’s done is done, and it’s all my fault. I’m sincerely sorry to everyone for everything.
Take care, please, and always foster your own creativity, even if you feel like you have no talent, for creativity is a terrible thing to lose. Trust me on this.

Shitting the Bed

I am genuinely sorry that I thought taking a bunch of pills would make me more likable. I’m sorry that whatever happened happened and I had some kind of freak out. But it was a one time thing. Anomalous. I have never had anything like that before or after since, and I am endlessly tired of having all of my personal value and character judged around that one, stupid event.

It would be like if you shat your pants during a sneeze one time, and then for the rest of your life, people flipped out whenever you sneezed, or spread rumors that you were incontinent just because one specific set of circumstances one time led to that happening. Even if you went your entire life prior sneezing in peace, and those same set of conditions never came together again to make that happen. Any new person you brought into your life would find out about this because the people you already know would eventually spread it to them, and you’d never be able to escape that one, stupid, embarrassing incident for the rest of your life.

It’s not like a fucking premeditated murder where you planned it all out and knew exactly what you were doing when you did it and had a purpose behind it.

I didn’t ask for this to happen. You didn’t ask to shit your pants. It wasn’t purposeful, or thought out, or planned in any way. It happened because conditions were favorable for it, and whatever those conditions may have been- whether it was missing doses of a medication or eating nothing but really spicy soup for several days during a stomach bug- it wasn’t entirely within your control. You couldn’t have known what would happen as a result. It wasn’t intentional, even. People forget doses of medicines all the time, and maybe your neighbor was trying to nurse you through your stomach bug by feeding you their homemade soup that always seemed to work for them.

You didn’t just decide to miss those doses, and you didn’t seek out that soup because you specifically wanted it. Things just happened the way they happened, and you got caught in the crossfire of fate. It happens to everyone at one point or another. So why does it have to be a life sentence? Why can’t anyone else accept their part of the blame? Why can’t your doctor admit that they put you on a pretty mind-altering medication that can cause psychotic episodes when discontinued suddenly? Why can’t your neighbor admit that maybe it wasn’t the greatest idea to feed someone with a stomach bug a steady diet of spicy soup for days on end? Why can’t either of them admit that everyone’s body is different and that maybe the medication that worked for most patients treated you a bit differently? That just because a specific soup recipe makes them feel better, it might have disastrous consequences for someone else?

And even if part of it might have been your fault… maybe the missed doses of medicine had a bad reaction with your self-medication, or maybe you tried to kill the spiciness by drinking too much milk, even though you know you’re sensitive to dairy… Is that really a good reason to assume the worst about you and make you suffer for the rest of your life?

Is it a good reason for all of your friends- even the ones who weren’t even there when it happened- to ghost you forever? Is it a good reason to lose everyone you ever loved and then get treated like scum by certain so-called “professionals” who then hold your life hostage until you can get “control” over your “condition?”

It’s not. And it’s not okay for you to have to muddle through, constantly putting your best foot forward and being perfectly compliant and cooperative with “professionals” only to have them keep making up excuses for your best not to be good enough. Why is it absolutely diabolical to sometimes still fart when you sneeze, or to tell your kid that their hair requires a special level of care that it’s not receiving?

I know my metaphor is far from perfect, but it makes a lot more sense than the logic of these “professionals.” In life, everyone’s always going to reach a point where they make a big stink without meaning to, and we as a species need to learn to move past the small stuff and focus on the things that are actually a significant threat.

That makes sense.

What doesn’t make sense is how the “professionals” don’t want me taking pills to help my “condition,” except they absolutely require me to take pills for my “condition,” instead of, I don’t know, maybe finding out whether I’m actually better off without any chemicals affecting my brain.

Like if the “professionals” kept trying you on mixtures of various different dairy products and spices to find one that you can eat without sneeze-shitting, instead of just, I don’t know, telling you to avoid it altogether, especially while sick?

I’m sorry for what happened. Make no mistake of that. But if the hope is to make me sorrier, I’m afraid it’s not possible. I’m only as sorry as I can be, which is to admit my part of the blame and try to make sure that I don’t make the same mistake again. Frankly, at this point it should be pretty fucking obvious that I’d do anything to avoid a replay. So congratulations. All you’re doing at this point is causing an unnecessary excess of trauma to a child and her mother that aren’t going to be easily undone, as well as forcing them to miss out on some of their most important years together.

She’s never going to be 5 or 6 again, and I’ve already missed most of that. It’s a very special age where a child is still best friends with their parents, untouched and untainted by the world and their peers. When they are still aware that they need you and aren’t afraid to say they love you… before that stuff stops being cool and they haven’t yet felt a pressure to rebel. When they’re still fairly innocent and haven’t learned to hate.

How much of that will I have left once she comes home…? If she comes home…

Cherry Pickers.

They’re grasping at straws now.

I’m really curious at this point as to why the entirety of my personal character is being judged on a single, isolated event, and yet when it comes to him, they ignore all proof I send to them regarding his behavior toward our daughter over years.

They ignore photos of bruises in suspicious places, they ignore her own testimony that she doesn’t get fed healthy food and that no one brushes her hair or teeth, they ignore the fact that I’m the only one who participates in her school activities and curriculum.

Instead, they tear me apart over me telling her that her hair isn’t getting proper care. She’s six years old. She’s old enough to be told what her needs are and to remind her so-called caregivers to help her meet those needs, which they shouldn’t even need to be reminded of in the first place, as they’re the adults and the ones who are supposed to be giving her that care.

They say they know for a fact that she’s eating healthy because they look in the pantry. As if that’s any sort of indication of what she’s actually eating. They say they’re not concerned about bruises because a traumatized 6-year-old who is terrified of getting taken away again tells them that everything is fine. They say that it doesn’t matter what evidence I give them of Ben’s behavior in the past because it’s in the past, which is a completely unfair double standard because the thing that happened with me is ALSO in the fucking past.

But they tear me apart over a simple statement that her hair isn’t getting properly cared for.

Okay. 👍🏻 It kind of seems like, at this point, they really only have positive evidence of my ability to parent, and because that conflicts with their plans to give custody to the parent that never sees her and constantly pawns her off on his parents, they’re really grasping for any tiny little thing they can try to hold against me.

It’s absurd.

She consistently tells me that no one participates in her academic needs. No one does her flash cards with her. No one helps her with her Seesaw or IXL assignments. No one else reads to her, they just sit her in front of the TV.

She constantly tells me that no one brushes her teeth, they rarely brush her hair, and she doesn’t get a bath much. She tells me that she gets fed cereal and PB&J.

So they’ll take her word that she’s definitely not getting hurt by anyone, but they won’t take her word that she’s being neglected.

It’s pretty obvious that they cherry pick what they want to. The whole thing is full of double-standards and grasping at straws to try to make me seem problematic, when in reality, she gets more care from me in the pathetic 9 hours I get with her per week than she does the entire rest of the time. They just don’t want to admit that they’ve made a mistake in judging me so harshly over a single, anomalous incident. They have to be right, just like everybody else in this situation.

I’m fed up with getting treated like dog shit over a one-time event that was not directed at my daughter and didn’t hurt her in any way, while the person who treated her like scum for years, called her a retard constantly, asked her why she was so stupid, shoved her around, and told her that she ruins everything gets to sit around and have his dick sucked by everyone just because he wasn’t taking pills to deal with someone like him.

They don’t seem to get that I’m a victim in this situation. I started taking the pills because they subdued my emotions and made me more tolerable to him. Because, as he specifically stated in a letter to me, he treated me like shit and purposely made me feel like it was my fault. So I felt like I needed to take some sort of action to make myself better for him, rather than thinking of it from a 3rd person perspective and realizing that I deserve to be loved and accepted how I am, and that maybe he didn’t have the right to treat me the way he did. All the times I could have (and admittedly probably should have) called the police on him for child abuse and didn’t, but then he calls them on me for yelling at people and gets my kid taken away.

One night, he drank himself into a stupor. I kept trying to tell him why I took the pills and I kept repeating it to him and asking him to repeat it back, but he couldn’t remember even when I’d only told him moments ago. The next day when I brought it up, he didn’t remember it at all.

What I told him was that I take the cold pills for the same reason they give Ivy Ritalin: so that I’m easier to put up with.

I hate saying that, but it’s true. Of course there are other things, like they help us focus, but let’s be honest. The main reason anyone gets force-fed medication is because people don’t like them the way they are and want them to be more tolerable. What I don’t get is why euphoria is considered an adverse effect and why people are forbidden from using things that make them happier. I’ve been on every fucking antidepressant and anti-anxiety and antipsychotic medication in the book, and all any of them have done is make me miserable. So I found something that made me personally feel better and made me more tolerable to those around me, but it was wrong and diabolical because it wasn’t a prescription drug. They’re all about cramming pills down my throat (in fact, they INSIST) as long as they’re prescribed. And who cares if they give me terrible migraines, make me want to kill myself, or cause psychotic episodes if doses get missed? As long as they’re prescribed. As long as they’re not actually making me feel better.

And because of one strange occurrence, my sanity is in question, and I have to go through all this bullshit of psychiatric evaluation, therapy, and medication management. Yet I can sit here all day and present evidence of his abuse toward both of us for years and years, and they’re just like “The past is the past, maaaan. You need to let that shit goooo.”

Why does he not need to submit to a psych evaluation? Why does he not have to get help? Why am I still paying for his shitty actions while he gets away scot free? And most importantly, why does he get to take the child that I grew inside my body and birthed through excruciating pain to bring into this world when he does next to nothing for her?? And after I already lost my other child to cancer!! It’s pure madness.

Last year around this time, Ivy came to me and told me she wanted to kill herself because she hates herself because of how her dad treats her. She was five at the time. That is not okay. But when I bring this up as evidence, no one gives a shit. Nothing I have ever said or done has ever destroyed her self-worth as much as the things he’s said and done. I never hit her, I only yelled at her if she was in direct danger, and it was always me she ran to for comfort when he did those things.

Who does she have to run to now? Because she’s not an idiot. She knows based on what’s happened in the last year that if she tells anyone about anything, it could be disastrous for her. And I don’t think that she should have her father completely removed from her life, but I certainly don’t think that he’s the proper candidate for custody and I absolutely think that he should get some kind of help if he’s going to continue to have her in his “care.”

There is nothing okay about any of this.

The Lamictal Crisis

I’ve always been interested in the Elisa Lam case. It’s strange how things seem to line up. When I first learned about it, it was around about the three year anniversary of her death, and I’d just started taking Wellbutrin.

Well, Netflix just came out with a short mini-series about the case, and it’s that same time of year again and I’ve started Wellbutrin again. So it’s kind of a weird blast from the past.

I forgot that she’d been taking Lamictal, which was what I’d been on last spring when things went to hell. The show had some new information, including the fact that it seemed she’d stopped taking her meds when the incident occurred. Her family said that previously when she’d stopped taking the meds, she would have bad psychotic breaks where she was delusional and paranoid and acting erratically.

It seemed like in the days leading up to her death, people reported her acting strangely. She’d had roommates at first who she’d been bothering with leaving weird notes on their beds and such. The hotel manager witnessed her coming into the lobby and yelling something random. She even went to some kind of live studio production where she wrote some long, rambling letter and tried to insist someone give it to the host. She was escorted out.

Now, I really don’t have a lot of memories from those three days back in April, so maybe I missed an initial dose or two which kickstarted everything and led me to miss more doses. But if suddenly stopping that medication can cause episodes like that, then I have to believe that’s what happened to me. I mean, things were looking brighter for me. It was spring. The garden was starting, the snow was gone, and I was just beginning to make an effort to reorganize my life. I bought a planner, I was trying to create routines to follow, I even had plans to rearrange the living room to make it more efficient.

I was starting to stand up and get my life together, so why would I randomly lose my shit? It doesn’t make any sense, unless there was specifically something screwing with my brain. It’s really no big surprise that I assumed I’d been drugged, especially given what followed. It seemed far too convenient. But maybe what happened to me really was just the straw that broke the camel’s back in that case, sadly.

If that hadn’t happened, though, I would’ve gotten better. I was working on it. I was making plans and starting routines and I was ready to heal. So it’s really unfortunate that what happened did and set me back so far for so long, removing crucial people from my life.

To make matters worse, of course, was the hospital starting me back up on a high dose right away, then having the doctor bounce me around on dosages, and me finally refusing to take it anymore because I didn’t like what it was doing to me, had possibly done to me, and I didn’t want it to happen again.

As I adjusted to being off it, I realized that I felt much better than I had in a long time, because if I’m honest, I really think that being on those types of medication really fucks with my head and makes me feel like I’m not myself. It’s like with the Wellbutrin. I decided to try it again because I thought it could help me quit smoking- a habit I took up again on my birthday, which was way too rough for me. I’d been on it before, and I didn’t strictly recall any side effects other than memory loss. However, when starting it up again, I realized that the memory loss was an issue because it also made me forget that there were other side effects. So for the first two weeks, I was just a complete mess. Crying constantly, making myself sick, anxiety through the ceiling, complete and utter despondency. I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t enjoy anything. It was hell.

It’s finally, after three weeks, stabilized to the point where I’m able to eat and do things again. It’s still kind of kicking my anxiety up from time to time, but it hasn’t really helped me stop smoking, either, so… I’m trying to decide if I want to continue to be on it. I think I was doing well without some brain control pills fucking up my brain chemistry. Mostly, though, I don’t want to have to be forced into a commitment of that magnitude where I could easily end up missing a dose and having my world turn upside down again.

I prefer to be in control of my own head, which is why I am in therapy to learn skills for managing emotions and things like that. Because I want to be the one in control of my mind, not some foreign chemicals that could fuck me over if I forget them. Never again.

So anyway, I know I went on a long tangent, but everyone had this idea that I went crazy because of the self medication I was doing to feel better, which was working for me and was only a temporary solution until I could get health insurance, which I now have. I have been off of those pills for many months. But I look back with this new information and I just have to say that I really don’t believe that my self medication was the actual cause. Like I said, I’d been getting back on my feet and was ready to get my life back together. I thought we were going to be looking for a house soon. I had plans that all went to hell when the incident occurred. And the grief from that really set me back a lot. For a very long time.

I know that no one cares to know the truth about what actually happened, and that everyone wants to see me as a crazy bitch and blame the pills I was using to help myself. But just remember:

I’d used those pills randomly throughout my life since high school, and nothing like that had ever happened before. Nothing like that ever happened again after I put my foot down and stopped fucking around with the lamictal. So believe what you want to, but the evidence is there.

For what it’s worth, I haven’t felt like I needed any sort of medication in many months. I’ve made a lot of progress and come a long way. No amount of therapy or conditioning will fill the voids in my life that my kids and soulmate used to inhabit. That will always be a struggle. But I am better equipped to deal with it now.

Sadly, my music and art skills have never returned, and I’m starting to suspect that they won’t. It’s another big hole in my life that can never be filled. But I’m really hoping that maybe I won’t have to say goodbye to my daughter forever, and then I can take all that time and effort and pour it into her instead of pointless, stupid bullshit like art and music. No one needs that. No one even liked it when I did do it. So maybe this turning point in my life is the cosmos telling me I need to give up on that crap and just be a parent instead.

But… if it ends up that I can’t do that either, then I don’t know what kind of life I will have. One where I’ll never be happy, I guess. And maybe that’s what I deserve after being such an abysmal person for so long. I really did try every day to be better. I just went through a really long period where the people I most needed refused to be there for me when I told them I felt like I was losing my grip. It’s why I turned to the pills in the first place. So please do not blame me so harshly. It really isn’t all my fault, even if I sometimes tell myself it is.

I reached out. A lot. I voiced my needs and concerns. But nobody helped me. So I had to help myself the only way I knew how at the time, and everyone seemed to prefer me that way, so it just continued.

I’m truly sorry about what happened. Not just in April, but the previous year. Losing so much all at once really takes its toll on a person, and frankly, forcing me to lose even more than that last year over one mysterious incident… it wasn’t fair to me. It really messed me up a lot, and I’m honestly extremely lucky I survived it, because there was one extremely low point in late June- early July where I very nearly didn’t make it. They kept jerking me around with all different medications that were exacerbating already present issues, and the stress alone was starting to really destroy my body. If I hadn’t gotten out and spent some time at a hotel nursing myself back to health, I probably wouldn’t be here now.

So… whether that’s a good thing or not isn’t up to me, it’s up to the people who have to tolerate me. And I hope I’m tolerable enough by now that they’re glad I survived.

Don’t ghost.

Learn to work through problems, rather than running away from them. One day there will come a problem that you can’t run from, and if running is all you’ve ever known, you will not have the skills you need to make it through that situation.
You may think it’s healthy to ghost people you find “toxic,” but it’s really not. You’re not only taking the easy way out and depriving yourself of useful life lessons, but you’re also causing serious psychological harm to someone who is probably already suffering from that.
Quite often, the people we tend to think of as “toxic” are just hurting and need help. It’s likely that they’ve been abandoned numerous times throughout their lives because those they rely on for support just write them off as “toxic,” give up on them, and resort to ghosting, rather than seeing them as another human being with feelings and needs.
Yes, you have needs too. But you cannot simply destroy another person’s life to meet those needs. You need to learn how to voice those needs. 90% of the time when people get ghosted, it’s very sudden and they don’t know what they did wrong. So how can they know what your needs are if you’re too afraid to let them know? Why punish them for your own shortcomings? If you’re a selfish and cowardly enough person to punch a permanent hole in the life of someone who loves you, then maybe consider that you’re “toxic,” too. And if they still love you even after you’ve done this to them, maybe they’re not as toxic as you thought. Maybe you threw away a really precious thing that’s hard to come by called unconditional love. Maybe you could both find happiness if you didn’t shove it away out of selfish fear. How can you expect to receive what you, yourself can’t even give?

All the goddamn lies.

They’re fucking giving him custody. Which means that all the shit they put me through over the last nine months was for literally nothing. They kept telling me that it was all to get Ivy back, but they lied straight to my face.

I can’t lose my last living child, a person that I created inside my own body through months of suffering. They’re taking her away from me and letting the person who only partook in the fun part of her creation have her. People kept telling me that courts usually favor the mother, but not this one. This one just likes to stab at me and watch me fucking squirm while they laugh.

After months of the so-called case worker claiming that she wanted to see me succeed, and that I was doing everything to get her back, she comes right out and tells me she literally doesn’t give a shit about me at all, can’t care, and is allegedly only interested in helping Ivy, but that’s been bullshit from the beginning. Otherwise, certain things would’ve been done, she would’ve listened to anything I said, and she certainly wouldn’t be doing this. Ivy needs a mother. Especially as she gets older, she’s going to need a mom.

And I really am sorry. I should have said fucking cunt.

Nothing that I did is deserving of this. I have done everything they’ve ever asked me, I’ve shown that I am willing to do whatever it takes for her and that I am a fit parent. Nothing that I ever did that caused this shit in the first place was worth doing this to me over.

I never hit her. I never hurt her. He did. I even provided photographic evidence, and they just wiped their asses with it and told me to go fuck myself. I may not have been as much of a mom as I should have been after consecutively losing my son, losing my house, coming back to live in a PTSD funhouse, getting fucked over by the only two men I trusted, getting pushed away and neglected by the one who swore to love and care for me always, and then losing a dear friend while knowing that I could have spoken to him more and didn’t.

A lot of shit was going wrong for me, and no one was helping. I was struggling to get help for myself with zero insurance, but I kept getting denied. My therapist even bailed on me. So it’s not like I wasn’t trying, my needs just weren’t being met.

Then Covid started moving in alongside the election pressure, and I was terrified. The anxiety was terrible, and it was too much. Anyone could have been there for me, maybe tried to help me find the help I was looking for, when everything I was trying was failing, but nobody wanted to. Everyone gave up on me.

But what happened last year was an anomaly. Unprecedented, never happened again. And yet in spite of that, they still don’t see any point in testing the samples I took of my drink to see if it was drugged, and maybe that’s what made me go fucking crazy, and they think that this one fucking stupid-ass never-before-never-again occurrence is worth removing my daughter from my life permanently.

Nobody actually wants me to succeed, wants me to be happy, wants anything that might actually benefit me in any way. I’ve worked and suffered hard for the last nearly year for nothing. For a lie. A hollow promise. Just like everyone else always fucking makes. “I’ll never leave you.” “I’ll always be here for you.” “You can trust me.”

I’m like the horse with the carrot tied to a stick, dangling in front of its face to make it walk, work, all for the promise of this godforsaken carrot that it’s never actually going to get. The carrot is a ruse. The daughter is a ruse. It’s all been a bunch of lies to see how fast they could make this monkey dance, for what? Entertainment?? Because it certainly hasn’t made things better. Everything is now worse than ever.

I give it my 100%, and it’s never good enough. Nothing I do is ever good enough. I’m not good enough. I serve no purpose. What good am I to this world if I can’t be a mother? That was the only purpose I ever truly knew I had in life. I wanted to be a mother since I was 16. I didn’t know what the future would hold or what I would do with my life outside of that one thing that drove me to exist.

But my son fucking died. I couldn’t prevent this. And now they’re taking my daughter out of my fucking life as well!? I’m not having anymore kids, that was something I knew as soon as Faron died. But I thought I could spend the rest of my life having this beautiful daughter at least… Now that’s fucking ruined, too. And for what?! What did I honestly do to deserve to lose her forever?!

It feels like everyone is working together to keep pulling all the strings. Pushing me and pushing me closer and closer to the edge, hoping that I’ll eventually have nowhere to go but over. Just keep on fucking taking everything away that actually means anything to me in my life. Ruin it.

What the fuck is the goddamn point now? I’ve been so strong, and I’ve fought so hard, and now I’m finding out that it never mattered. Because I don’t matter, so why should anything I do matter?

Fuck.

Guilt, forgiveness, and fight.

I watched a movie tonight. “A Monster Calls.” It kind of destroyed me, but it also put something into perspective for me and made me understand something a little better.

It was about a boy whose mother had cancer, and he kept having these recurring nightmares about his mom falling of a cliff and him holding onto her hand and trying to keep her from dropping. Then a tree monster (Liam Neeson) started coming to him and telling him stories and said he would eventually force him to tell his own story (the nightmare).

He didn’t want to tell because he was ashamed that at the end of the dream, he let go and let her fall. Because he wanted it to end. He hated knowing that she was going to die and couldn’t stand it and wanted the pain to end. He didn’t want her gone, so much as he just wanted the pain to end… wanted it to stop looming over him, keeping him in limbo, waiting for the blow to fall.

It made me understand what it must be like to have to deal with someone who has suicidal tendencies.

The threat is always there, hanging overhead like a cloud heavy with rain. It could start pouring down at any minute, but you can’t tell when, so you can never let your guard down. It gets tiring. Exhausting.

It’s human nature to be selfish. People don’t realize how exhausting it is to be a cancer patient, clinging to every precious moment of their life they have left, or how exhausting it is to feel like no one appreciates you and that your existence is a plague upon everyone you love… constantly trying to decide if you cause more harm being alive than you’d cause if you died.

The thing is, though, death just happens. It could always come at any time for any reason. People just push that fact to the back of their minds when things are fine and everyone is healthy.

But that’s never something I was able to do, especially after what happened to Faron. I always knew it could just happen suddenly and knock the wind out of me. It’s part of what kept me so on edge and so scared of life.

But I fought for Faron until they forced me to stop. Even though I knew it was useless and even though people called me cruel, and even though it killed me to see him that way.

When people abandon me and give up on me for feeling suicidal, it only reaffirms the thoughts that cause me to feel that way. Today, I feel that a lot of people are extremely lucky that I did live through Ben’s abandonment. Or at least, that’s how I think they probably feel. Because I have to remind myself that just because people make me feel like shit about myself and just because the guilt of all my mistakes constantly weighs down on me and makes me feel sorry for existing, not everyone else feels like that about me.

Most of the things I look back on and remember with extreme guilt are things that nobody else even remembers. And they go really far back into my childhood, too. The first guilty memory I can recall is when I was super little and my mom had taken my letter blocks and glued them together to make a sign for my door that had my name on it. And I was a dumb-ass little kid, so instead of noticing that mommy tried to do something nice for me, I was upset that my blocks were stuck together. And it hurt her feelings a lot until she threw it down and they broke apart and she left the room, crying. Even as a 2 or 3-year-old kid, that guilt weighed me down, and it was only the first of so many things I wished I could take back and not have put people through.

And that brings me to the topic of forgiveness. One thing I’ve always been is too forgiving. It gets me hurt more often than it serves me well. No one has ever been as forgiving of me as I’ve been of them, especially myself. How is it so easy for me to forgive others for hurting me in seriously lasting and hopelessly damaging ways, but when it comes to me, I can’t even forgive myself for being a dumb toddler? Maybe it’s because no one ever forgives me, and so I feel like I’m not worthy of forgiveness. Maybe I feel like I’m the only one who deserves to suffer because I’m so used to it by now, it’s like my second language.

And that’s another thing that people, being the selfish creatures they can’t help but be, don’t seem to understand: how exhausting it is to have to be strong for everyone else, constantly neglecting yourself, while they refuse to be strong for you in return and eventually let go and give up on you. This is why that feeling of unease and uncertainty never goes away. Because it’s not just death. People leave me all the time, and it’s rarely from death. Usually, it’s because I’m the one on the edge of the cliff, grasping to the hand that eventually lets me go because they want it to end.

They don’t realize that I backed myself up to that cliff fighting all their battles as well as my own, all by myself until I was outnumbered and it was their turn to help me fight. But when the time came for them to step up and put in their part of the effort, they copped out. Instead of seeing me as a person who needs their help, they see me as the only battle worth fighting, and they fight me off the cliff, rendering all my previous fighting worthless.

And still, somehow I always get back up, and I always forgive. I will always regret any amount of pain I put another person through, because somehow it is easier to forgive others for pushing me off a cliff than it is to forgive myself for being too young and dumb to appreciate a kind gesture from my mother when I was 2 or 3.

I understand that it is difficult to deal with a person who is oftentimes convinced that their life is a burden on those they love. I do. I can legitimately understand it now, and I can even forgive it, but that doesn’t make it right.

My father walked out on me before I was even born because I was too much work and too much trouble to put up with. I hadn’t even had a chance to even do anything other than simply exist, and even that was too much. Then, slowly, throughout my life, it kept happening. Friends, potential step-dads, boy/girlfriends… Even before I grew to have suicidal thoughts, people continuously gave up on me, walked out on me, abandoned me. Even the goddamn telephone man, who I’m pretty sure was my uncle playing a fucked up prank on me. It’s probably a huge part of the reason I started having those thoughts and feelings. People didn’t want me around, and it was damaging. It started making me believe that being around was wrong… cruel, even. Like if people wanted away from me so badly, then why did I ever have the audacity to exist near them at all? I forgave my father for abandoning me before birth, and of course, he just did it again, because even as an adult living across town from him and rarely attempting to make plans, I was still just too much work and not worth the effort.

When the feelings first began, and I started actually attempting, it just made people angry at me. The only person who’s ever actually told me that I’m wrong and that they want me around is my mom. Everyone else just made the whole thing about how shitty I was to hurt them. Obviously, that only helped those feelings get stronger as the guilt gripped me harder. No one cares that I was hurting, only that they were hurt, and so the guilt was always placed on my shoulders. They’d inevitably leave me, they’d make it my fault, and then the guilt and the feelings of not being wanted would just snowball.

If fewer people had left me in my life, it’s possible things wouldn’t have ever reached that point. The worst part is that things were finally, finally starting to really get better for me when the cancer thing happened and threw my entire world out of whack. I lost my son, then my home, then most of Ben as he started pushing me away. Then, finally, the rest of him as he did what everyone else always does, and made it even worse by getting my last living child taken away from me.

I honestly don’t know how I survived. The stress alone almost had me a couple of times… malnourishment, bad reactions to new medications they kept thrusting onto me… things like that which had nothing to do with being suicidal and everything to do with grieving over so much… and for such a long time.

Yet here I stand, having managed to pick myself up yet again and keep going, even if some days I feel like I’m exerting every last ounce of my life force to do so.

The only person I can really count on is myself, yet I’ve let myself down more times than I can count. I hope you know that no one asks to be this way. It was never my dream to grow up with no self worth or self respect, and to be thrown out like garbage again and again by everyone I’ve ever known. I didn’t ask to be suicidal, and god knows I’ve tried to get help. The problem was, I was never insured. And when I was too down to try any longer, that’s when I really needed my life partner to step up and help me. God knows, I’d tried to help him get help, but he always declined my offers and I reached a point where I couldn’t help anyone anymore because I was too exhausted from being the rock. I needed someone else to take the wheel for a bit.

And I guess it was my fault for expecting them not to crash the car and leave me for dead.

However, now that I am finally insured, I have been able to get better help than I was able to before. I can actually get therapy and afford medications and so for now, even though I’m still extremely grief-stricken and far from being happy, I haven’t really had those suicidal feelings like before. Mostly, my fight comes from my daughter and knowing that she needs me, even if she says she doesn’t, which kind of hurts coming from a 6-year-old. A girl needs a mom. I may not always get along perfectly with my own mother, but god, where would I be without her? Somewhere I never want Ivy to have to be.

Wait and hope.

There are two parts of me that are constantly at war inside; one that wants to learn to hate him and move on somehow, and one that wants to remain devoted, no matter what.

He said he’d never leave me, and he did. So how can I trust that he’ll never want to try to make things work?

I know now the degree to which I hurt him. I didn’t mean to, of course. I didn’t mean to decline the way I did. And I didn’t realize how much I was making him pay for it because I was too blinded by pain to see anything other than my own needs.

I still don’t think that was a justifiable excuse to do the things he did, but it’s done. It can’t be undone. I’m not trying to say that my pain was a justifiable reason to be shitty and lay down and die, either, but if he had been there for me, things could have been better.

This is how the back and forth goes in my head.

I respect him as a person and see him as a human being who deserved my best, even when my best wasn’t possible.

But I’m a person too, and I needed more than just someone to cook and drive. I needed a companion, and when he blew me off for other people, video games, or just whatever else, when he pushed me away in my darkest hour… it’s why things got so bad.

He was focusing on the wrong things. I appreciated him cooking and doing chores when he didn’t need to, but it wasn’t what I needed.

I needed his presence.

I still do.

I hate this limbo, this hell. I’m just going through the motions, waiting for something different to happen. I feel like I’m on autopilot, and autopilot isn’t where my passion and creativity live, so I have not been at all productive this entire time. It pains me.

I have my Korg all to myfuckingself now, but no motivation or inspiration to actually use it. I have quiet and privacy for all the things I wanted it for then, but now that I have it, I can’t make the most of it.

Things really went to shit. :,/

Like, they want me to be better, and I want to be better… in many ways I am better, but if they think keeping me from my daughter is going to do anything other than fuel the bad parts, they’re fucking stupid. I’m sorry, they just are.

They do know that the loss of my son is what drove me to the point I got to, right? And so they think taking away my last remaining child is going to …..? Somehow have the opposite effect??

I think they don’t want me to get better. They want to see me fail, because they think the fact that I’m assertive and defensive makes me a bad parent. But they can go straight to hell.

Maybe if my mom had been more assertive and defensive of me, it’s possible I wouldn’t have grown up with so many problems. Maybe I always needed someone to stand up for me and help me fight, rather than just jumping on every bandwagon full of antagonists. I always fought for everyone I care about. And it was never enough. It didn’t save Faron and it didn’t matter to Ben, or Emily, or my mom, or anyone, ever.

Maybe the best way I can help people really is to just stay away from them.

I’m a disease. No one wants me.

I do need to stick around for Ivy, of course, because even though I suck as a person, I am a good mom. No one understands her like I do, and she’s really going to need a mom as she starts getting older.

Honestly, I doubt Ben even wants her. He probably just doesn’t want me to have her, and she doesn’t need to be stuck with someone who only wants her around as a revenge tactic. Seriously. The shit he did when she was taken away? He was in fucking paradise while I was over here literally wasting away from grief. A good parent doesn’t go live it up when they lose their kid, Casey Anthony. A parent who truly loves their child can’t live without them. It’s why I declined after I lost Faron and what remained of him in the house. It’s why I lost 50 pounds in four months when I couldn’t get out of bed, or eat, or do anything but waste away and try to kill the pain.

If you need proof of who the better parent is, it’s all right there. Providing for a child without truly loving them is an obligation that can harbor resentment. Take that into account as he began to resent me when he had to care for me for a long enough period of time.

True love of a child (or person) drives you to want to provide for them. And that’s why I’m participating in all this bullshit and trying to get my shit sorted out and get the fuck out of here, even though it feels some days like it’s taking all the life force I have left. If he really wanted her, he would have gotten a better job by now that doesn’t have him working hours where he misses 90% of her life while he pawns her off on his parents.

He walked out because he wanted to focus on himself.

They’re not making him do shit. I don’t get to focus on myself, not in the ways that actually help. Instead I’m forced to focus on “myself” in ways that they think are helpful. They don’t know me, god damn it. No one knows me better than me, and the shit they’re putting me through is the goddamn opposite of fucking helpful.

My fucking foot is breaking out in that stress rash again, and I’ve got those horizontal stress ridges in my nails again, which I haven’t had in a very long time.

Please be better.

I hope…

I really want this year to be better in as many conceivable ways as possible. But more than that, or… honestly, just as much, I want to be better. I want to do better. I want to be treated better and treat others better.

I want things to heal. I want new beginnings. I want to stop hurting and stop being hurt.

Please, just give me a second chance to be someone better, because I know I can do it. I’ve done it before, I just… I lost my way. So many horrible things happened to me in such a short amount of time. I needed help that no one was giving. I was trying to get myself help, but couldn’t. I did what I thought was the best I could under the circumstances, but it’s possible I was wrong. It’s probable that I was wrong. There was some other way, some other path that I was missing. And now…

To say that I’ve learned my lesson would be a massive understatement. I’ve learned many lessons this year, most of which I didn’t want to learn, and shouldn’t have had to learn in the ways that I did. I was treated worse than the lowest of lows in some regards. And maybe I didn’t deserve it all, but I surely deserved some. Right?

Anyway, I don’t want to turn this into some kind of lame New Year’s Resolution post. I just want to send my hopes and wishes out into the void, on the off-chance that some deity or human in control might answer them, preferably with something other than a “no.”

That’s all I’ve gotten my entire life, except when I said something I didn’t mean; That always got answered with a “yes.” Please… let this time be different. I give chances upon chances to everyone, even people I know will hurt me again. This time, please just let me be the one allowed a second chance. That’s all I ask, and after everything I’ve been through to bring me to this moment, I think, possibly, it’s the least I deserve.

🙏🏻