Become so tired, so much more aware...

In over three years what I've recognized is how some patterns remain the same -- the ink fading a little over time, the paper it is printed on becomes wrinkled and worn -- yet those details aside, there is movement in a direction that makes you recreate the fading ink, even daring to reprint the whole thing, starting from scratch, or perhaps being even more daring and entering into the new age of technology and upgrading your archaic ways for something more tech savvy... all of these metaphors aside, it is a strange time to return to an old blog, filled with old wounds and raw tales, when the filter feels like it has been clogged and muddled. The waters are not as transparent as they once were, which is what created the censoring in the first place.

It's been over three years when I chose to abandon this blog. I didn't know that I had anything else worth saying -- even to myself -- that warranted the clicking of keys and the red squiggly line of doom telling you that words weren't actual words after all. Or perhaps this sacred space abandoned me in return. It served its purpose as I revealed, removed layers, exposed myself, and then emptiness emerged.

And, truth be told, the more people were reading it, the more exposed I felt, the less safe I understood my own thoughts to be when others would take them and twist and taint them into what suited their agenda, their understanding, even their own story. How could I be surprised or even disturbed by this? Words are a form of art. We as the viewer and receiver must twist and turn and remove what doesn't suit us to fill in the gap of what is creating flow within our psyches.

What has changed now since then?

I won't back track three plus years. There has been life, and there has been death. There has been learning, and there has been teaching. There has been giving, and there has been receiving. The spiral of life continues, moving either further inward or further outward to wherever we are on this mystical scale. My spiral has been moving and flowing between outer and inner realms, and with the gaining of newer perspective, the old patterns with faded ink and wrinkled and torn edges reveals itself:

My depression has returned.

Let me be clear, depression doesn't ever truly seem to leave. It's either active or passive. I'm not speaking about someone else's experience, simply my own. Sometimes it is a week to week or month to month acknowledgement. Other times day to day, or, even more challenging, hour to hour or even minute to minute. I have been in the latter half since last year.

When I initially started the blog (circa back to the old defunct one I started on LJ before moving here!) I was creating a sacred space where the inner voice of 'turmoil' (excuse the extra dramatics -- I am a writer after all...) could have room to find where the pain was, and what the internal darkness was really about.

Last year my depression peaked its head out and let me know we would be entering into a dance together. Still with two left feet and no sense of rhythm, I wasn't interested in dancing. The music was too loud, too slow, too fast, too many sensory overload's to keep track of.

Perhaps people knew, but I wasn't able to speak it for over four months. Not even to my beloved's. No, the silent stigma of shame came barreling through my front door, and there wasn't a single ally I felt could witness me. And the truth of our political climate shed spotlight on the weakness of internal pain and suffering and made for far less compassionate response and more judgmental ones. In over three years this also seems to be the norm relative to social media. Seriously, when did we start being so harsh to each other? I'm consistently appalled at our lack of humanity... sigh.

For me, I understand my pattern with depression to be a day to day reality. Consistent spiritual practice aids the taming of the dark, but it doesn't necessary remove every fiber. This time around my practice was less about taming and more about revealing. What were these patterns showing me? What was the depression really about this time?

I'm still digging, still purging, still uncovering... though I eventually hit an openness within my depression. Silence is a killer.

Silence is a killer.

No one ever wants to talk about mental illness. I've been told countless times how uncomfortable it is doing the work I do of Priestessing and Ministering to share my story... that's bullshit. It's such BULLSHIT. That's patriarchal thinking and shame mongering. Just stop.

We tell our stories and it offers others who carry the same thread to know they are not alone, that there is solidarity in some form. This is magick. That is the ultimate healing. Your discomfort isn't supposed to be my problem. Just like my depression isn't supposed to be yours, either. I understand this more now after opening the door again...

The last time my depression was this debilitating was nearly a decade ago. I lost friends during that time just as I have lost friends over this time. I'm less sad about this portion now. I'm older, I understand the rhythms a little more than I did a decade ago in my twenties where identity and support were vital. I'm not saying these aren't vital components; what I'm saying is the wound feels different when those who say they have got your back really don't.

I don't blame them. Some are not in a place to witness and support. I get this. Even in that struggle the awareness is a blessing, really, because it means we are not wasting each other's time in dishonesty and being inauthentic. You can't/won't/don't know how to be there for me. I won't call on you and bring discomfort to the relationship and rely on you for something vital and be disappointed, or worse. There is a gem there in the awareness.

When I opened up to a select few, they couldn't hold me, couldn't witness me, and didn't know how to support me. I didn't know how I wanted to be supported either, so again, there's no blame, simply awareness.

It is a big risk, a huge undertaking of self-esteem and exposing the psyche to ridicule, blame, shame, and so much more when you open up about what is going on within you. We're seeing it now with the #metoo campaign... we open up, we expose ourselves, and someone else says they don't believe us, that it's not as bad as it seems, and they compare us to others who have had it worse. Yes, please, because all mental health, all sexual assault, all pain looks the same.

This is so damaging. These types of responses recreate the assault and pain all over again. It's disgusting.

This is what I experienced this year in the depression. I shared, and I had others tell me that maybe I needed more sleep, that maybe it was my allergies, that perhaps I was eating too much red meat... are you fucking serious?! This is equivalent to the bullshit rhetoric of "well what were you wearing when you were assaulted?" Um, I don't know, my humanness and pleading eyes that said DON'T FUCKING VIOLATE ME... maybe that...

Why am I exposing myself now, in this strange blog (do people even blog anymore?!) where others could stumble upon it, where people I know could see and know this?

I'm not entirely sure. I think back to my writing retreats (which I sadly was unable to attend this year) and my writing teacher reminding me how much my writing needed to be out in the world, exposed. Most of what I would write on retreat was about pain and suffering and emerging.

Revealing is sacred and uncomfortable work. I'm doing the work. I've been actively working with and healing the layers of depression, tending to the roots and turning over the soil. It's day to day, sometimes hour to hour, sometimes stretching week to week or month to month. This week it's day to day.

The resurrection of this once sacred space means having to dust off the cobwebs (Spider's presence has been wildly visible this month!) and polish up language as I once understood it to how it is functioning for me now. I'm okay with that...

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Comments

Lunamyst said…
I write this comment coming from a place of knowing. The days when the sun shines brightly and yet all you see is the darkness. The days when your biggest challenge is just to get out of the womb of your bed. I can hear you. It is so hard to allow people into that space...into the void as on one hand you do not want to drag people into your void and yet you do not want to be alone in it. It is so hard to reach out and take a chance to trust. To trust that the person you allow in will not only witness and hold space for you but hold you close in the sadness without judgement or petty advice. Sometimes you just need a friend just to be there ....not a sunny day friend but one that will also weather the storm with you. Blogs like this are important. They help people know that they are not alone. They are not in isolation and sometimes by groping around in the dark you touch a hand of friendship. Not one that is going to judge, give unsolicited advice or offer to resolve your sadness because that you alone are the only one that can work that out but one that knows the graceful art of listening because just like journaling being able to make your words and feelings a reality unburdens your heart and makes you feel that you are not alone in your journey. People hold space for me all the time and yes, I have been betrayed but the ones that have held my secrets...my darkness... are those special people that make my dark days a little brighter. That is unconditional love. So do not fear reaching out. You might be surprised at how many reach back with no agenda but with nothing nut love. In perfect love and perfect trust. Lunamyst

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