TRYING TO FIGURE IT OUT

As I continue further into therapy and attempt to get to the point where I can build a bridge to communication to the other aspects of myself who seem to go by different names and each possess different needs or desires, I begin to find myself in a horrific and strange place. This place is somewhere in my psyche, but it feels like a real location.

Hazy and confused, I emerge from this place often left with only a strong lingering scent in my nostrils and an overwhelming sense of dread. I suppose I am one of those folks who emerge from “switching” with temporary head and leg aches. And, I come back feeling so very tired.

I am trying to piece it all together and hold on to the memory of this place. This room. This appears to be the place where “everyone” stays. “Everyone” must be waiting for his chance to come out. And, “everyone” seems to be competing to get out and gain control over the shared body. And, “everyone” seems to feel entitled to this one body as if it is his own.

Currently it is a battle of sorts. A fight for control. The goal is to get “us” all together. To get “us” all on the “same page” — working together toward integration. A shared psyche that will allow me — or “us” to function in life as one. There is a block coming from “me” which is keeping this from happening. So, the exploration continues as my therapist and I work to break down the block (or blocks) and bridge a way toward communication.

But, for now, I’m left with my thoughts, nightmares, and odd discordant memories from that place “we” go when “one of us” breaks out and takes over the real-time action of life. …disconnected from each other and rather lost. A scary exploration of the mind. A mind damaged by years of child abuse. A mind splintered off into odd emotional segments designed to protect. Trying to figure it all out and remember…

first i notice the smells
the scent of vomit, sperm, blood and wet grass
and, then,
i notice the damp feeling
and, then,
the repugnant odor of what must be rotting flesh

the grimly lit room
i can see
or is it “sense” the beds lining down against the cracked wall
how many beds?
ten?
no.
twelve?
not sure.
but, there are more than a couple.

my eyes can only make out the feet
the uncovered dirty feet hanging at the end of each bed.

orphanage beds?
like from some european film?
are those feet blue?
are those the feet of a dead person?

is that a child in the back of the room?
he is trying to hide from me.
wait.
is that child me?
he looks like me.
bowl haircut?

who is speaking?
it sounds a bit like me
in a disguised voice or dialect.

“come in here. take your place.”

i touch behind me.
damp.
caked dirt.
started to gag from the scents
that permeate this place.

i want to leave.
where is the door?
“you can’t leave. why don’t you lay down and rest with us?”

November 12, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , . Uncategorized. 6 comments.

UNPEELING THE iONION

The psyche as an onion... At the moment, my life is consumed by confusion, fear and therapy. It’s an old and over-used metaphor, but sometimes one must look at his/her life as onion. In therapy — especially the type of three days a week’s worth which I am in — one must rely upon metaphor to grasp an understanding so that the mind can get a grasp around the core problem. At the core is the key to the way toward integration.

So, I sit with my therapist and think of a conference table at which to negotiate and make peace with parts of myself unknown to me. Fragments of me that have long ago split away from the person I know as myself. We are unpeeling the layers of my life — my onion. Some of the layers I know. Oddly, the most soured/bitter layers I already know. But, other skins are layers that have been long hidden somewhere in my psyche.

Sitting on a beautiful beach this morning with my toes pushing through sand, sun pouring down upon my head, cold ocean breeze messing my hair, cigarette in one hand and a coffee in the other. I watch the waves as the surfers head to catch some magic waves. I begin to think of this onion that is my life and all these layers I’ve never really known that are slowly returning to my memory. Suddenly odd choices I’ve made in my life start to take on a sense I had long since tried to understand.

The sting or stench of the smell can be unbearable as we peel. Bringing tears of regret and fear to my eyes. I do my best to toughen up and get a grip to face the truth that is my life. I am tough. I can roll with the toughest of them and, if required, can usually take them down if they push me against the wall. But, I grow so very weary.

Pull back this layer and I suddenly remember experiences and misadventures that seem so alien that it doesn’t seem possible that these memories are mine. Here is a layer that reveals a long lost trip to New York with a black dude who was into things far twisted from my own interest that I was in way over my head. Another very thin layer and parts of a debauched night spent in a hot apartment in Harlem. Another layer and I discover a trip with a doctor to Fire Island. Is that me auditioning for a career in porn? pornAnother several layers and prostitution reveals itself. $50 for this and that. Closeted lawyers, law students, MIT professor, an old man, a married “straight” doctor from New Hampshire, some sad sack editor and some guy named Julio who gives the smell of meth on his breath. Here is another layer. I’m walking down an alley with some big scary looking guy. I think we’re behind some educational institute annex on Newbury Street. I’m thinking to myself, “Is the money worth it? Is he a cop? Am I going to get killed? Arrested” …As I try to push this slice of skin to the side I find myself wondering if maybe that is what “I” wanted.

As I think about my first physical in San Francisco I remember being so very relieved that I was totally STD free. And, yet I can remember wondering why I was worried about these tests. As I move the bits of onion to a tuberware container for further examination at a later date, I realize that there must have been some “aspect” of “me” urging me to be tested just to be sure I was OK.

She leans forward and tells me we are doing hard work. …unpeeling such a complex onion. She encourages me by letting me know that we are moving forward at a very good pace and she feels quite positive that I will come through this fine. That this is the hardest part of my journey and that it will be quite difficult as we work it all out and try to understand “me” and the things that “me” wants that “I” don’t understand or know. In the meantime, life gets turned upside down for me and my significant other (the most important “aspect” of my life) — I try to get a grip and be tough. I try to find reasons to laugh and smile.

I escape into movies and music quite a bit. I lean on FaceBook and sometimes to find the level of concentration required to read a book — but that can be a stretch. I find it hard and almost impossible to be reliable. …to be on time. …to be in a place where there might be more than one or two people. Some people who are strangers to “me” at the beach seem to know “me” — I go along with it best I can. I pretend and act like I know them. I try to approach it like I’m some private investigator in disguise trying to resolve the unraveling mystery of the onion that is my life. I’m trying so hard, but sometimes I really have to fight not to give it up.

This onion stinks. This life is a hard one. But, then, who ever said it would be easy? Like PE coaches love to tell their students, “Look kid, life isn’t fair. Give me ten.”

…I wish I had a river
I could skate away on
I wish I had a river so long
I would teach my feet to fly..

Joni Mitchell
One of the greatest musical works of our time is also the most harsh... …I find myself leaning heavily on the likes of Ms. Mitchell, Tori Amos, Barbra Streisand, Tom Waits, Jennifer Warnes and Leonard Cohen lately. Then again, I always have. When you’re feeling down and out who can resist a defiant cover of “Cry Me A River” or Captain Tom Waits invitation to the blues and a drive in an ol’ 55? Let me tell you – no one can.

And, I wait til 3pm to pick up my peeling knife to work closer to the core of Me.

April 7, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Uncategorized. 3 comments.

WHAT WILL BE

Indie critics pretty much slammed this CD which Devendra Banhart released this past fall. My understanding from what I read was that many felt he was trying too hard to push into the area of commercial pop. So, when I finally heard the CD I was left to scratch my head trying to understand why critics would take this view point. In many ways, this CD is less commercial than his previous release. There is a rather filtered feel to the music on “What Will Be” — to borrow a word from one of his new songs — the music, at times, feels a bit muddy and murky. But this is not a negative thing. There is something so oddly dense and warm about this music. It sort of makes me want to pull up a blanket and just create a sort of sonic cocoon as it plays. Bums me out that it doesn’t seem to be getting the attention I think it deserves.

There seems to be so much re-hash and crap out there right now. It is so refreshing to hear something with a newly fused energy. Not at all commercial pop, but it deserves to reach the commercially successful level. I guess it won’t. But, sometimes, it is cooler when you find some music that feels more like just your own. …Your personal discovery. A sort of musical treasure.

Life continues to throw curve balls. I manage to dodge most of them. Sadly, I end up catching a few. Worse yet, I’ve been hit in the head by a couple. But, one must push forward. Especially when one finds one self using lame/cliche sport metaphor — and one knows nothing of sport.

I wish therapy days did not fill me with such dread and drain me of so much energy. I am told “we” are making exceptional progress. Yet, it feels like it is getting worse before it gets better. It is a feeling. I suppose it is not truth, but feelings are what I run on — so it can get quite grim from time to time.

However, then, something perfect will happen. I’ll see a surfer catch a wave with perfect balance and grace. Or, my lover will kiss me in that way that only he can. Or, I will hear an artist hit that one note that fills my heart with joy. …Or, I will catch a glimpse of what makes the struggle of life so brilliant.

And, it is in these moments of pure hope that I find the strength to keep pushing forward.

December 9, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , . Uncategorized. 4 comments.

THE HUMAN BRAIN AS FILING CABINET

human_brain

...from what I gather -- THIS is the human brain

I spend a great deal of time dithering on to myself about how honest I want to be on my blog and, also, how self-absorbed my writing might seem or even be. But, it is my blog. And, I figure that anyone who might be reading it can always just stop reading if so inclined. I “blog” for me. Of course, one can’t help but think of a possible audience. Still. This blog is my record of me — but it is not a journal in that there are things about myself, my life and those in it which are too personal to publish on the world wide web.

That said, I find it somehow therapeutic to write some of what I am going through down — and, quite often, a reader contacts me with helpful ideas or opinions that give me a sort of strength which was lacking prior to my writing. Self-induced pop psychology. 07-01b

I’ve been trying to process some rather disturbing information shared with me and my Life Love, Mr. B — by my therapist with back-up support of my previous therapist. The information was overpowering to me. It still is.

I don’t know that I believe it.

Can this really be true?
Can this really be me?
What sort of new world of crazy just fell into my lap?
Shit. This can’t be true?
Can it?

I think I am still processing the information. Accessing wether or not this is a concept I even believe to exist. Accessing what it really means and, should it be true, does it really apply to me? And, if it is true and does apply to me how do I move forward?

Right now, I am trying to let go of the whole “label” thing. Why must the name of something matter? And, does being labeled something really mean anything other that what it is? A label does not define us. I am gay. …But, in human terms, it is not the most important aspect of who I am. Tho, it most definitely has formed who I am and how I respond to the world — and to the unfairness of the world. …and the absurdity that the country to which I was born is supposedly a place where all people are created equally and have the same opportunities and rights. This is absurd because it simply IS NOT TRUE. No. To have full equal rights and equal opportunity you better hope that you are a white, fully hair headed, male who was lucky enough to be born into money. Oh, and your chances of having the best opportunities will be increased if you are 6 foot or over and gifted at sport. If you are a woman, a person of color, not hetrosexual or of the middle or lower classes — forget it. If you fall into one or more of those categories — your chance at equal rights, opportunities and respect in general are more than cut in half. Welcome to the world — specifically in this case — to the United States of America.

Anyway, I digress. Labels do not define us. And, in my case right now — I’m not sure a name/label for the psychological issues I’m fighting really matter. What matters — I think — is the drive to fight through it. Find a way to first live with and through it and get to a place where it is no longer an issue in my life. …To a place where I can march back into the den of inequality and lack of opportunity vs. just sitting at the beach feeling afraid. Yes. That is what and where I should apply focus.

I’ve an exceptional and caring therapist, a loving husband, loving friends and family — all of whom are pushing and supporting me as I work through this mess. The name of the cause is of no concern. I think. Maybe.

I’ve been told to think of my mind as a file cabinet. An onion analogy was first attempted but I find it more than a little challenging to compare any aspect of my life to a vegetable or fruit. But this concept of my brain as a filing cabinet seems to make a bit of sense to me.
digimarc.ms So, for my purposes of processing — the brain is made up of “files” called memories and emotions. When something happens to me it causes an emotion. The problem I have (in its most simple form) is that many of my emotional files are currently mis-filed with certain memories from childhood.

So, let’s say, someone yells at me — my brain should automatically select an appropriate emotion — which is somehow related to one of the memory files but not on a filing conscious level. That emotion is then sent into action in a manner appropriate to the situation. Currently, if someone were to yell at me my mind might scramble to a file filled with the emotion more appropriate to 5 year old and directly tied to something horrible that happened when I was 5 years of age. Because the files have never been sorted correctly — when my brain sends the files into action — the resulting response is not appropriate to my 43 year old situation. The messages are getting received but coming out in a rather fucked way because somewhere in my file cabinet I am still stuck in the 70’s when I was child.

SO – my brain files need to be pulled out, dusted off, re-evaluated and then re-sorted so that the brain can select what is needed and file away the past as just that. …the past. No longer going on, but valid. And, the emotions that I might have needed to express/feel at that time were just too much for a 5 year old filing cabinet to hold. So, the cabinet sorted the files in a way to protect my psyche. Now, years later — that disorganization is causing some very serious and disabling challenges.

It doesn’t matter what my shrink wants to call them. Or if what the issue is called or debated within the psychiatric community. …what matters is how I function and that I get on with my life before I wake up to discover I need a walker to get to the can.

So, taking a deep breath — I am attempting to sort out or through the worrying diagnosis name and just sort out these files in the cabinet I’ve been told is my brain.

It doesn’t really make sense to me yet. I’m still fighting against it. I think. I don’t want to fight against a concept. I really don’t. However, I am struggling not to fight against it. I am struggling to grasp all the meanings and get past a label that horrifies me to the core.

At any rate, I do hope there is sufficient budget to color code my files. I find that much easier when dealing with office work. Perhaps it will also assist in the re-sorting of my life.

November 16, 2009. Tags: , , , , , . Uncategorized. 8 comments.

THOUGHTS ON FEELING DESPERATE & ALONE

 

scream_munch

Scream, Edvard Munch

i’ve been fighting through this PSTD nightmare for a little over 2 years now. and, in retrospect and via intensive therapy, i now realize that i’ve been fighting through this horror for years. the difference being that, in the past, i was able to function quite well as the coping skills i somehow developed as a child continued to work into my adult life.

of course, band-aids eventually wear out. the tear in the skin — or — in my case — the wounds to my psyche/soul — will not heal with fantasy band-aids. …even if Hello Kitty is etched into the plastic casing of the bandage. so, at some point starting around 2001 the band-aids began to fall off not too long after i put them on.

and, just around the time i was finally getting my life to a place where i always dreamed it would be — the band-aids just stopped sticking. and, now, at this moment in my life i can’t even seem to pull the decorative bandage out of the box to cover up the bleeding battle wounds.

i’ve been stumbling about — most of the time in a disassociative state which leaves me feeling afraid, confused and alone. most annoying is the conflictive way i find myself feeling: my love, my family, my dearest friends and strangers often seem totally clueless that i am falling apart and freaking out — i’ve learned to hide things so well that people very often can’t tell that i’m having any sort of problem. when, in fact, i very often feel like i’m either about to pass out, die or just vanish as i am speaking to someone. tho, the blackouts have slowed down a great deal in the past year — I still find myself losing time.

i might be sitting on the sofa holding Little Bagel at 10am and then suddenly find myself putting away groceries at 3:16pm with absolutely NO MEMORY of ever having gotten up from that chair with Little Bagel at 10am. Nothing. And, then, walking into the bathroom trying to find one of my “band-aids” to calm down only to discover that I somehow have gotten a hair cut and there is a bag with two new vintage shirts i must have purchased at my favorite thrift shop. i go on line to look at my bank card activity — and, YES, i made a charge at the thrift shop and the hair place. i check the the stuff i was stocking in our kitchen and it would appear that i picked up everything B and I discussed needing to be purchased — tho, maybe i bought too much of something. i sort of float outside — and, YES, there is our car. parked all safe and sound.

and, then, i usually end up curled up on the bed flitting between worry and naps till it is time to pick up B at his office downtown.

i usually feel sad, sullen and moody. i have to push every inch of energy in my being to make my “normal” voice — which has always been energetic and positive in tone, i have to focus on actually chatting and hearing what he has to say about his day or worries so that i will be able to remember them.

and, then, like last night — i practically pass out from exhaustion (tho, i did nothing at all yesterday even remote to activity) have a silly dream about double-headed snakes in my parents’ bed from when i was a child — wake up all sweaty and confused. slip out of the bedroom to the living room where i feel the odd need to search for snakes and my father. after i do this — knowing how “insane” this need is — i then lie on the sofa. Little Bagel has followed me out of the bedroom and climbs up on the sofa with me. i think to myself:

“it is 3am and i will NEVER be able to fall asleep”

next thing i know it is 6:44am and time to get up. i feel sick to my stomach. i start to go on my “normal” routine of driving to the coffee shop and then to the beach — but then i realize that i only have $4 in my bank account and the disability account is currently at a negative balance. so i make coffee here. it doesn’t taste good to me. i fight the urge to get sick.

i do my best to act up-beat and attempt to discuss my nightmare as if it is just strange and kind of funny. B kisses me goodbye and tells me he loves me, i return that. then, i do my best to drive home without freaking out.

i get sick when i get home. i lay on the sofa for a couple of hours.

how much longer will life be like this? is this even a life?

of course it is. and, of course i will get through this. i’ve certainly gotten through worse — but, at some point, the human runs out of energy to cope. the general lack of purpose to my days — inflicted by my inability to ever know if i will be capable to actually doing something

— yesterday a simple trip to Best Buy to return something B had purchased turned into a real over-the-top-drama when as the young person was initiating the return into the register i began to pass out. suddenly it seemed as if half the store staff was around me and i had been brought a chair and a can of soda. i was able to convince them not to call 911 for an ambulance. thinking as quick as i could i expained that i am diabetic (which of course i am not) and that i had forgotten to eat breakfast — they brought me a candy bar. after chatting with the store manager i left — then i heard a woman calling me by name — she had the return receipt, my wallet and my keys in her hands.

so, today, i sit inside the apartment feeling lost, hopeless, alone and sick to my stomach. it is a perfect san francisco day — the sun is out in full, there is a sweet breeze blowing in through the open windows. i should go to the beach with Little Bagel. …but, i just don’t have the energy and worry that this could be one of those days when my grip on her leach might fail.

tomorrow is therapy day number 2 of the week. the first day was canceled by my therapist due to illness. so, in fact, tomorrow will the only day i have therapy — if she is feeling well enough to be back to work.

sometimes it just gets so old. and, i often find myself thinking — “at what cost?” …how much have i damaged my friendships, my professional future, my body — and, most importantly my relationship with B?

…and i become almost paralzyed with fear and worry.

so, i sit and try to at least fit a “band-aid” that might get me through to the time tonight when i crawl into bed.

some days it is almost impossible to be positive or find hope. …this is one of those days.

my therapist and shink feel i’m making/having some major break-thru’s and that i WILL beat this but it will take more time and therapy. …no one wants to give me a time line. impossible to do they say. …so they tell me — one to two years. in the meantime i receive something in the mail telling me that i can now access coverage from medicare.

this is not the “place” i was meant to be as i slip into 43 years of age. no. not at all.

life is not easy, but it should not be this fucking hard. …and there is no other adjective that expresses this situation or this feeling. plain and simple — this all so totally fucking sucks.

but, on i go. looks like this band-aid has Barbie on it. 80’s malibu Barbie. …well, if one must be nuts — best to be nuts in a malibu barbie kind of way. am i right?

…and i’m too lazy to check for my spelling/grammar. fuck it.

 

 

October 29, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Uncategorized. 7 comments.

TOSSING PILLOWS AT THERAPISTS & LITTLE BAGEL CAPTURED!

Peaches scares me, but in a really positive sort of way...

Peaches scares me, but in a really positive sort of way...

Tho I downloaded the new Peaches album when it came out I don’t think I had ever really listened to it until yesterday afternoon. I love it. In fact, I’ve been playing it over and over. I love the way she continues to sound as if she has recorded her work in a Canadian basement somewhere. Most cool. I particularly like “Talk To Me”

Therapy was so fucking difficult yesterday. After I stumbled outside of the therapist’s office I felt as if I had been in a rough-n-tumble fight with myself. I very nearly colided my body into several boys on Castro. I fear I might have looked like a confused gay boy on meth or something. However, I think I was dressed smartly enough. I know I’m no boy. I turn 43 this coming November, but I like to think I will always be ‘the boy’ — tho, that moment fleeted by in about 1993. …when I had hair and most of it fell in front of my left eye. However, I am still the same size! Yay!

Anyway, therapy. Well, it is the way out of the PSTD Flashback Hell I seem to be living. So, pushing forward. I’m quite blessed really. I have a partner whom I love and who loves me, two perfectly crazy pets, a mom who loves me, a cool brother in NYC, some fucking awesome friends, a great therapist — even if she wanted me to throw a pillow at her —, great music at my disposal, cool shoes and it’s an easy walk to the beach. So, things will and ARE coming together. I have faith in that.

Anyway, the whole point of this post is to share a glimpse of my Little Bagel. That is B’s voice you will hear. And, if you look really close, you will see one of my feet at the very end of the clip. It was late and I was wearing only a night shirt. I refused to be captured on the iCamera. But, really, I ask you — what good are clothes at bedtime. Nude is the way to go. Tho, I’m not opposed to jock straps.

Here’s Little Bagel! Let’s hope I do this right! I did mangage to post it to Facebook!

July 29, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , . Uncategorized. 13 comments.

KISSING WITH FISTS & THE LIKE…

loving this LP. best tracks are 'kiss with a fist' and 'drumming song'!!!

loving this LP. best tracks are 'kiss with a fist' and 'drumming song'!!!

Normally I do not mind the fog. Actually, I rather like it. The San Francisco bubble/micro-environments keep the pollution and heat out — but, today, I would much prefer to have the sun back. Therapy Day was not as difficult as usual but the therapist always leaves me with so many thoughts to think about. Like, she asked me some specific questions about my childhood. After rambling on and on she made an interesting observation:

“Why do you think that you are able to speak so casually and humorously about events that strike me as so devastatingly horrible?”

Those were not her exact words. I am paraphrasing my therapist. Anyway, I’ve been thinking about that ever since she made the observation. I think “survival” is the easiest answer, but perhaps it runs deeper than that. …Everything seems to run deeper than I expect. But, she is exceptional and I think I am begining to feel myself slip back in from time to time. I think things are getting better. But, she cautioned me that “we” have a lot of work to do. I guess I’m still looking at a couple of years of this sort of self-examination/reflection before the tools one needs to cope with PTSD are going to be useful. Chin up and pushing forward.

Donut Holes. ...my little book.

Donut Holes. ...my little book.

I gave an online interview with a book website yesterday. They seemed to like what I had to say and it will be published soon. Hmmm… I will put up a link whenever that happens. Interestingly, a critic in France is about to publish a review of my book. B does Google searches for it — and I have as well. After digging thru the Google search engine I have found various websites in the US, Canada, Germany, France and the UK are selling it. When I click on to the link it normally brings one to the Amazon.com US site. It looks like Green Apple ( a cool San Francisco Indie-Bookstore ) will be stocking it soon. And, a couple of other indie stores seem interested. I am dependent upon my mother to work on them. Can’t seem to get up the energy to deal with it myself. Frustrating.

Also, I think I have mixed feelings I had not expected to come up. I think I’m a very open person about my life, self and experiences so it seems odd to me that I feel a bit odd about the book. I’m glad there are a few people who seem to like it and buying it, but something about it is worrying to me. I published it for myself. …And, I think something in me wanted to try and reach people who are going through or who have been through similar horrors as myself. Much like the writings of Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore has done for me. His writing just seems to help me. His latest book is called “So Many Ways to Sleep Badly”

He is a true writer. I think I’m a dabbler. I have all the angst of an artist, but am not one. But, I do hope my book is funny to people. Life is funny. Growing up is awkward and there is so much humor to find in the adventure of it all.

Mattilda's excellent book!

Mattilda's excellent book!

Mattilda lives in San Francisco as well, but I’ve never met him. I just communicate with him via his blog.

I’ve “discovered” some more new music recently:

way cool and addictive smooth electronica-like musis! Get it!

way cool and addictive smooth electronica-like musis! Get it!

I’ve loved Grizzly Bear for a while, but this new LP is the best thing they have done! I guess it is considered electronica, but it sort of grows away from that genre. The lyrics are excellent and the mood is pitch-perfect. I love “Two Weeks” and “Cheerleader” …Can’t seem to play this LP enough! I suggest you get it as soon as possible.

And…

despite the lame cover art, this LP is rather magical. really. it is.

despite the lame cover art, this LP is rather magical. really. it is.

…I don’t think there is a single lame track on the new Bat for Lashes LP. …but, what was she thinking with that cover? She seems to be a very free sort of artist. Tho, the sound is totally different — she reminds me a bit of Kate Bush. I used to think of Bat for Lashes as a knock off of my cheerished Goldfrapp. …but, this second LP is unique to itself.

Blah, Blah, Blah. I think this might be one of the dullest posts I’ve ever put up. Oh well. I’m enjoying FaceBook. And, the new issue of BUTT is quite a good read!

seems like BUTT is going back to more alt gay porn which is a good thing!

seems like BUTT is going back to more alt gay porn which is a good thing!

There are actually interviews and things to read and the erotic photos are not so mainstream in the last two issues. There is hope!

July 22, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Uncategorized. 12 comments.

DIET COKE & FLASHBACKS

um, that's not 007 by those words. it is me. really. i mean it.

um, that's not 007 by those words. it is me. really. i mean it.

Yesterday, while in therapy, something was explained to me that I never knew.  These horrible sensations that have been haunting me in the most unrelentingly manner for almost two years now — and, indeed, for most of my life in far less incapcitating ways — are not “panic attacks” “freaking-out” or “stress” but are actually flashbacks.

I have always associated flashbacks with leftovers from bad acid trips or veterans who end up thinking they are still in battle/war. But, I guess the true definition of a flashback is not as hallucinatory or limited as I had thought.

FLASHBACK defined:

a psychological phenomenon in which an individual has a sudden, usually powerful, re-experiencing of a past experience or elements of a past experience. The term is used particularly when the memory is recalled involuntarily, and/or when it is so intense that the person “relives” the experience, unable to fully recognize it as memory and not something that is happening in “real time”. The medical term for the phenomenon is “hypnagogic regression”.[citation needed]

Flashbacks are not necessarily episodic — that is, the re-experienced memories may not include specific identifying features (such as images and sounds) that were part of the original event or experience. Because there is a strong emotionaltraumatic event. This is especially true for young children who were lacking the cognitive abilities needed to define and characterize the trauma when they experienced it, but who may, nevertheless, relive all of the emotions associated with the traumatic event. In addition, those adult survivors of childhood trauma who have component to memory as well, flashbacks can occur as a rush of feelings, emotions, and/or sensations associated with a solely these emotional memories to draw on, also may experience them in flashbacks.

When they occur involuntarily, flashbacks may be due to a disorder such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (in cases of war-related trauma, physical or sexual abuse trauma)

eraserheadAs always, it made me feel really odd to hear a term like that applied to me. It upset me. I was up all night. Just couldn’t sleep. And, my nicotine patch be damned I think I nearly off’d an entire pack of Marlboros just to make it through to the sunrise. That sucks because this is my fifth week on the patch and I’ve cut back to only 2.5 cigarettes a day.

see? i dyed my hair and eyebrows. this is how i apply my patch.

see? i dyed my hair and eyebrows. this is how i apply my patch.

But, i think it was unavoidable as the cigs kept me from crawly out of my skin. I fell into sleep around 5:30am and woke up at 9am. Odd thing is that I woke up feeling pretty damn good.

I went to the beach, took Little Bagel for a long walk and did some basic errands.

I think, maybe, given some time to digest the information I feel a bit relieved to know that there are real names for what is experienced. And, as “we” continue to work through all this shit in therapy — I will gradually learn tools/techniques that will help me get through these episodes.

The goal of therapy is obvious: To get ME and MY LIFE back. To be able to once again enjoy my life, live it and work again! I keep having to remind myself that it will happen. It will.

…just would be ever so nice if there were a pill or some medical procedure that could remove several years of my childhood from my brain.

Last night I sat in the midst of flashbacks — Actually, I think I was in Flashback City.  Anyway, I sat in that sad little city and just wished that all pedophiles, rapists and other evil-doer’s would just evaporate. …in a really painful way!

…And, I was also thinking that I wished cigarettes were good for us, that Diet Coke could act as a major vitamin, that chocolate/sugar conatined 0 calories and that working out was bad for us. And, that vegetables and fruit turned out to be the dangerous stuff.

Well, that is my post for the day. Now, if you will excuse me I think I might go out into the sunny day armed with my Diet Coke and my patch. I hope to leave the flashbacks in the apartment. …Maybe Little Bagel will eat them like she eats everything else.  Tho, I doubt it. Little Bagel tends to only eat the objects we value. Like photographs, art and pretty glass lamps.

poor Little Bagel. she was up all night with me. but, this is an older picture.

poor Little Bagel. she was up all night with me. but, this is an older picture.

July 8, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , . Uncategorized. 12 comments.

DARK CORNERS, DENTAL WORRIES, SKINNY-FAT & ODDLY COLORED PUBES…

one of isabelle's new movies which has yet to open in the US! ugh! great poster, tho!

one of isabelle's new movies which has yet to open in the US! ugh! great poster, tho!

Well, it has been far too long since last I posted a blog entry. Actually, it has been far too long since I’ve last been on the computer. But, now, I attempt to return to some order of a life starting today. At least I hope so! I suppose I should bring anyone who might still be stopping by my site up to speed on the events of my “life” — Let’s see.

To be honest, I have been quite busy. Seems that there has been much time required for me to sit in dark corners focusing on refining my confusion, depression, lack of sleep, nightmares, and general inability to function. Basically, it is time spent huddled in a dark corner quietly weeping while my iPod struggles to not run out of battery power.

Not to say that I’ve been totally consumed by required time in the dark corner. Dear, no! There are other pressing issues that drive me out of my dim little corner. …For a while these were mainly dental worries.

dental-bridgeWhile my incredibly talented brother was visiting I fell prey to horrid dental pain. Thank goodness B found an awesome dentist who basically saved my life. I had to take anti-biotic and was given a pain killer before anything could be done. The pain killer really worked like magic. Unfortunately, it made me more than a little “tipsy’ and I worry that I made a junkie sort of impression on my brother’s way-cool and beautiful girlfriend. They both kept telling me that it was fun to hang with me, but I worry that the lamp shade and toilet plunger incident was a bit too much.

Anyway, the tooth issue was quite bad.  Scary infection(s) resulting in the extraction of my two lower front teeth. I looked like the kid with the banjo in DELIVERANCE. …deliverance-dueling-banjo-with-hillbilly-close-up-smiling-702353

Sadly, the banjo-pickin’ skills do not come with missing front teeth — just an odd sort of lisp.

Two cool things did result:

1. My dental bridge! Aside from being one of the sweetest people I’ve met with two incredibly cool assistants, she is an absolute artist! My new teeth look better than any of my other teeth and yet she managed to blend them in!

2. Pain killers sort of numbed my general worries for a while and made me realize that all problems in life might be solved if we could all walk around with morphine drips. I could be wrong, but I seriously doubt it.

Of course, there are future dental worries to be addressed later this year. It could be that another tooth might require extraction and I believe I need to have two or three root canals to be re-done and a crown replaced. If it didn’t feel a bit “alien” I would enjoy having my entire tooth selection bridged. Tho, this experience does make me wonder how our elders ever really dealt with dentures. I mean, you don’t realize it — but one does feel with their teeth. Odd, that. Oh, and before you suggest it, implants are not an option for me. Not enough bone or something. …who took my bone?

All my time in the dark corner and essentially no doing much thanks to this hell they call PSTD — I have somehow managed to get to the correct weight. But, I think the lack of activitiy is resulting in the fact that I am skinny-fat. I don’t mind being skinny, but I must draw the line at skinny-fatness. It is odd. I need to find some sort of pulley system that will allow me to work out without falling down. Adding that to my list right now!

Oh, and can I just share something with the world that is really annoying? …And, kids, be prepared it will eventually happen to all of you. Why o why must pubic hair turn to odd shades of gray?!?!!? Isn’t it bad enough that we must suffer gray on our heads and in our beards?!?!? …now the odd gray hairs show up on the toilet privates. Not cool.

And, none of my issues has been helped by the fact that Isabelle Huppert’s films from last year have yet to play in the US! Color me even more annoyed and distressed. However, there is a new Barbra LP coming for end of September! And, I have been enjoying the new Tori Amos LP — even if it isn’t really all that new in style/sound. I still like it. But, please! Let me see Isabelle’s new movies!

i know i am probably one of the gayest men on the planet, but i could just stare at Ms. Huppert for days on end. So cool!

i know i am probably one of the gayest men on the planet, but i could just stare at Ms. Huppert for days on end. So cool!

Oh, and regarding my self-published Amazon.com book:  odd experience.  …even tho, I ‘ve kept a blog for years and have always been upfront about my life — the book brings it to another level.  I didn’t expect that. I also did not expect it to sell. I just felt the need to do it. What has happened is that it has sold more than I thought it ever would — tho, not that much mind you.

My worry is that it will sell just enough so that I put my disabilty payments in jeopardy.  I really can’t work right now and I have no idea when I will get to the point when I can return to any sort of nomral functional capacity. I’ve a new therapist and it sure appears that I’ve a long way to go.  Anyway, the book brought up more than a few things for me. I hadn’t expected that either.

Donut Holes  (my book of sticky pieces of fictionalized realities)

Donut Holes (my book of sticky pieces of fictionalized realities)

I’m just going to roll with it and try not to worry. I figure what with oddly color’d pubic hairs sprouting about I have enough to contend with! Right? Thank you for the affirmation.

Another odd thing about my book is that when I have googled it I have discovered that it is being sold off of websites in the UK, Canada and Germany. …It looks like these sites are somehow linked into Amazon.com. Also, there is this web site devoted to newly published short story collections that wants to review my book on their site. So, why not? …but, what if they really hate it and point out the really stupid “type-O”s that crept into the final print!?!?

Sigh. Once again, I will just roll with it. One really can’t be bothered by this sort of thing when dealing with graying pubes.

Well, I shall close this post as I do want to catch up with the blog world I know and love. Once I do that I will pet Little Bagel and Lola — and, then, return to my dark corner for several hours of uncontrolable weeping and moaning.

love and kisses,

matty

July 6, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , , . Uncategorized. 6 comments.

NOTES FROM THE NEWLY LABELED

socialsecuritycard47164758_std1i know that this should be viewed as a major relief and blessing. i get it. i understand.

when my doctors advised me to apply for permanent disability i was devastated. just getting my head around the idea that i might not be able to work again seems so incredibly hard to fathom. but, the evidence of this is all around me and in my head.

true, i might be able to think about returning to “a job” in a couple of years but there is much therapy and ‘healing’ to be done. after each therapy session i feel ill and as if i’ve just worked a 15 hour day and run a marathon.

so, i applied. it was quite difficult to do.

i was warned by everyone that i would likely have to appeal as most all applications are refused by the government. i dreaded that process. and, in the mean time — bills have stacked up, debt to our ears and i’ve sold almost all of my personal possessions just to have some amount of money. i’ve been going without any income for over six months.

so, to those close to me it seemed a major blessing that the government approved my permanent disability with the first application. my payments will start in march.

however, all i feel is that i’ve been further defeated by this PSTD ordeal.

feeling small, a loser, lost and insignificant is only hightened by the fact that i am now officially recognized as “disabled” — degrading and degraded.

sorry, if i whine too much. i’m quite lucky to have survived what i went through and i am quite lucky to have those who love me near and i am quite lucky that the government didn’t send me on a hassle to secure a way to help support myself.

so, i close my eyes.

…and, i try to push forward. image004

January 30, 2009. Tags: , , . Uncategorized. 19 comments.

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