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.
Several months ago, my hubby decided to devote more time to his true love: pursuit of his artistic drive. We are quite blessed to live in San Francisco which is filled with a wide variety of options for artist’s studios. We visited just about all of them, but The Islais Creek studios really seemed a great fit for Byron. This gallery of artists is varied, open, unpretentious and creativity flows with a sort of genuine friendliness that just felt right.
As Byron is a professional architect, his work projects a strong architectural structure, theme and feel. I’ve always found it quite interesting to watch Byron as he approaches a professional project. Very often, when he is about to design a project, space or building — he will start by taking a hike in the mountains or on the beach to collect objects which inspire him or resonate the concepts, surfaces, function and general aesthetic of the project. He brings them back and begins to carefully construct a sculpture that goes well beyond that of an architectural model. He actually constructs a piece of art which then takes him to the functional level of the architectural process: blue prints, CAD, design, etc. As a person who knows a limited amount about architecture, the resulting projects or designs or buildings seldom seem connected to the original sculpture which sent him out on his professional mission. Equally interesting to me, is that Byron often finds it odd that I don’t see or “feel” the connections between these sculptures and his designs.
But the power of the sculptures and drawings is often staggering to me.
Everything about his pieces seems to be constructed of sharp, industrial, organic and metal objects. A quick glance and I start to think of “edge” but once I look at any of his pieces I almost immediately begin to feel a sensual and quite beautifully soft elegance leaking out of connected bits that, on their own, hold no emotional appeal. I find myself wanting to touch this work. Several of Byron’s pieces have, for me, a strong sexual or erotic vibe that I am unable to articulate. Byron’s sculptures pull me in and fill me with a passionate sense of the true sensual.
So, I was thrilled when he decided to devote more of his personal time to the creation of his art.
This past weekend was his first ever Open Studio. It was held as a part of the Bay Area SFArtSpan Fall Open Studios 2009. Last weekend included The Islais Creek Studios. He intended this Open Studio to be a sort of “dry run” — so that he could perhaps get a feel for some unbiased feedback, chat more with the other artists at Islais Creek and determine how he should best approach the next phase of his artistic career. He had not yet finished his website and it is still not activated to ‘live’, his art card is a temporary one and he only had two days to establish his presentation. I was confident he would receive positive feedback. I’m not so sure he was.
The feedback surprised us both.
Not only was it quite positive — from the very beginning last Friday night individuals were asking Byron for a price list and were wanting to purchase pieces. Byron had not yet even gotten to the point of formulating the cost of his work. He is working on that now. And, I know that the SFArtSpan Spring Open Studios 2010 will allow him to fully present and show his work as he desires. The real work is just beginning — his website must go live, unfinished and unstarted pieces must now move forward and cards must be printed. However, as he approaches this new phase I can see the energy and positivity blooming in his eyes.
This is an exciting moment for Byron. And, for me.
For more info about Byron B Kim’s work stay tuned for a link to his website.
For more info about Islais Creek Studios and surrounding Bay Area San Francisco Art Studio Spaces following this link:
For more info about the Bay Area or San Francisco Art Scene check out ArtSpan here:
I suppose most think of New York City as THE PLACE for the art world in the US, but there is a very powerful group of artists in the Bay Area creating innovative and unforgettable work!
I meet so many cool artist: Rebecca Jackrel, Enrique Aquirre, the esteemed Eric Joyner (YOU MUST GOOGLE ERIC’s WORK! YOU SIMPLY MUST!), Rebecca Fox, Min Hwan Park (truly inspirational metal work and jewelry), Marlene Kwee and the esteemed Yong Han ( LIKE THE ERIC, YOU MUST GOOGLE TO SEE SOME OF YONG’s WORK! YOU MUST! )
I also met several artists who visited Byron’s studio — one of whom really blows me away with her work! I am attaching a link and one of the many incredible photographs you will find there.
This is “Street Scene” by Maria Bartola Mejia
— I hope she will not be offended that I placed this incredible image here, but I can’t fight the urge to share her work!
And, of course, there is the powerful work of my best pal, Alan Kropp, at his website — URBANE LIGHT. By the way, he will soon be publishing a book of his work!!!! Stay tuned for more on that!
I’m just filled with thoughts of art today. I wish I were an artist. I know, I know. I’m a writer, right? I don’t feel like a writer. True. I wrote a book — but few have read it and I don’t think it holds much merit. I’m not fishing here. I’m just being honest.
I think I have all the angst of an artiste but none of the talent. I feel like the little sister in Woody Allen’s INTERIORS.
Wow! …It’s Bobby & Sissy!
This never fails to make me shake with laughter.
Two of my dearest friends are physical heal professionals. Yes. Believe it or not — one of the three people who know me best on the planet is a certified Yoga and Fitness expert — as is her hubby (who also happens to be a close pal-o-mine!) …They have really great bodies do things like meditation, yoga, healthy eating, bike rides across rough terrain, hike and teach others to live a healthier lifestyle. And, yes, they still love me and B! B and me tend to do things like lay about, smoke and bitch about life in general — but with flair and humor!
Anyway! Alex & Beth Iglecia are starting a new (AND FREE) experiment in their mission to improve the lives of us and others — and, this time, they’ve thrown chocolate into the mix! So, I am SO THERE!
Just a call in and you’re plugged in!
Follow this link for important info — AND DON’T FORGET IT IS TOMORROW, 10/20/09 starting at 6pm PST or 9pm EST!)
Also, you might be interested in checking out Alex’s website.
His site is quite good and highlights his professional abilities.
I would like very much for either he or B or my brother or ANYONE good with hi-end technology to get my book formatted to Kindle. …but, that’s a whole other blog posting!
So, take some time to unwind and call in tomorrow. I probably should have gotten this post up sooner. Blame it on my Little Bagel. …um, that’s my dog.
Whey would someone spend this much money and not tell me who they are. And, tho, the box is beautiful — I immediately recognized it as the sort of box which Clive Barker has used as a fictional device of evil which brings demons into the lives of his characters in more than a couple books and movies. And, as I read the card I thought I remembered the line on the card — I google’d it and — yes, it is a line used in HELLRAISER.
Now, I might be being silly — but does this gift carry a certain creep value? And, I LOVE the DVD of the British Television Series/Experiment called JAM…but, JAM, too is so very sick & twisted I can’t help but wonder: does this gift give like me or are they trying to “tell” me something about his/her opinion of me?
I love looking at this box, and winding it up to hear the sweet but haunting little melody — but are demons going to sprout out if I ever press the part of the puzzle box which opens it — does this gift come with bad tidings?
Why would someone spend this much money and not tell me who they are?
So, if the gift giver is reading this — I want to express my thanks. I really appreciate these gifts. I do. And, I would really like to know who it is that has sent these incredible works of art into my life. …I loved the book, too. Tho, I will not share in public what the book is or is about — but that, too, in its own way is a bit worrying.
If the gift giver might be so inclined — perhaps he/she could drop me a line and let me know why they are. Because, I am a bit creep’d out.
Do you like me or hate me?
Fingers crossed that this individual who sends me gifts has no grudge against me for some reason.
love and kisses,
I have loved Juliette Lewis since I saw her wreck havoc in Oliver Stone’s insane masterpiece, NATURAL BORN KILLERS. And, over the last 4 or 5 years she has really established herself as a solid rock musician and continues to be so totally cool, beautiful and insane! Gotta love her.
Today, it crossed my mind — I used to think of her as our generation’s Sandy Dennis with more sex appeal, but my opinion has changed. Juliette Lewis is sort of a hybrid of several concepts embodied by some greats of our past:
If one were to somehow merge Sandy Dennis with Ann-Margret and Patti Smith (of the 70’s) you would so totally get Juliette Lewis!
…who wouldn’t want that hot kiss?!!?!?