Becoming Me

Dear friends,

 Many apologies for not getting back to you sooner but I’ve been traveling my own private tunnel through hell.  Only now do I see a glimmer within myself from time to time, the glimmer of hope that I will come out of this a better and stronger woman.

 

I have followed the sage advice of a dear friend who cannot be with me here and sought out professional help for myself.  I talk to a counsellor on the phone once a week and she is my link to sanity, she has the eyes that see what I have been through and the things that have come to the surface are unspeakable, but must be spoken.  My mouth is mute but my body is screaming to be heard.  The stuff that is coming out is the stuff of nightmares.  And we are only getting started; the tip of the iceberg has only been scratched.

And Nootka Rose has lost another petal to autumn.

It is the new moon.  It is Rosh Hashanah, the New Year, a time for new beginnings – a new beginning for Nootka Rose?  Time will tell.  I have known moments of total despair and moments of euphoria and incredible love, the type of love I have never received before, never known before.  There are angels and they are surrounding me now.  I just don’t know if I can receive what they want to give.  I don’t know if it is too late for me but I hope it is not.  Despite the coming of fall, the angels beckon.

I had an angel visit me yesterday and she saw things in me I could not see in myself.  She saw an incredibly gifted and beautiful person that she wanted to learn from, to share her family with, to hold up during this time of weeping and grief.  She did not see what I saw, what I have seen all these years through the eyes of a mother who did not want me and who used me for her own narcissistic purposes.  And when I failed, and I was set up to fail, love was withheld and abuse was handed out by the buckets.

At a very young age as a helpless child I was chased, I was beaten, my needs were ignored and I was not allowed to sing my song.  I had an emotional gun put to my head and I was told to get upon the stage and perform like a circus monkey and to win, always to win.  Only then did this helpless child feel any kindness if only for a moment.  Then it was back to jumping through higher hoops, playing the instrument of her choosing, not mine.  It was all I knew, the only skill that I had that was ever nurtured… and eventually it ran me into the ground.  And that is when I became invisible.

Do I feel sorry for myself?  No.  These are simple facts and the simple facts make up the story of the life I have led with the ghost of her in my mind constantly haunting me.  Her anxieties have now become mine, her dreams replaced mine, her wishes overshadowed who I was, who I could have been.  And now I realize, at least on some level, that I can be free of her and try to live those dreams now, crippled as I am. 

I can do this and with your help I will succeed.  One of you lives across the street in a home for disabled people.  I call you The Blind Woman Who Knits.  You are an inspiration to me and someday I will read this to you.  You have my only book of poetry that is in Braille that I lent to you so many years ago.  Only now are you willing to give it back but I tell you, my sister, that it is yours.  Because you held me and made me laugh when tears were in my heart.  Because even though you are three years older than me you call me Big Sister because I am taller than you.  But your heart is 50 times the size of mine and your courage is only something I can aspire to.  I bring you fresh vegetables from my garden and you feed me love and laughter. 

There is Jolly Holly, who is a whimsical and happy spirit who feeds me broth, takes me out of this house to her small pad,  makes me sit down at the table and eat properly, and is determined to “beef me up”.  She even ordered me to clear my dining room table of all clutter so we could have a meal she will make next week.  I can’t believe the kindnesses of her heart.  We even have a date with or without the men in our lives on Valentine’s Day.  And after resting at her place she dragged me down to the ocean to get some lovely photographs that brought me back to life.

Another one of you, my Butterfly Friend lives far away but has cheered me along and tried to understand my experience from the point of view of a single man with a good mother and a loving family of siblings.  You may not understand me but you befriended me and you gave me work because you admired what I do.  You gave me back a little piece of myself and you invited me to make your Christmas special with all the commissions you showered on me when I felt totally worthless.  I put my poetry on photographs awaiting your approval and you always approve whatever I do because you know what I have been through and how much I know about people because of my experience.  You have made me realize there is nothing to regret.  Adventure still awaits me.

I have found a true friend, a kindred spirit with a family she wants to share with me… a little at a time because she knows how fragile I am.  I call her The Nurturing One.  She cares for the people across the street so I need not be embarrassed or ashamed of my body and its failings.  For my body did not fail me and I did not fail me and I am not worthless and there is no need to be ashamed of what I was put through that caused all this pain I am feeling now.

I have learned that there is so much love out there, but what good does it do me if I cannot love myself first?  So many of us, especially women, were taught only to serve.  We nurtured, we nursed, we bled, we sacrificed our souls to serve others.  Now it must stop.  For Nootka Rose there is no choice.  It is this or death for a cold winter awaits me if I stand outside my own home, the home of my heart.  My blood will freeze from the guilt and shame that has been heaped upon me year after year.  I hand the guilt and shame back where it belongs and it does not belong to me.  I am worthy and I am determined and all my angels will help me through this.  There are so many of you and you know who you are – I’ve only mentioned a few of you because I am tired.

He may never come back to me, the one who left me, but it is not his fault that he could not cope.  Perhaps I bear him a great deal of ill will at times, but underneath it all the only answer is love; I don’t speak of that clingy needy sort of love but only of the love that requires the deepest of respect for our diversity.  It is not our fault that we were born into the families that crippled us with scars we took out on each other.  There will always be things about you that I do not understand, You Who Left Me, when I thought I knew you so well.  Now I realize I don’t know you at all and your very presence makes me ill at ease.  We are so different and I hope we can find common ground for though I go to bed at peace with myself I wake up alone and terrified because you are not there to comfort me through the nightmares that were not of your making.  How can I blame you for things you did not do?  I cannot.  But now I hold you accountable when you treat me badly! 

We have seen the Blue Moon and the death of Uncle.  You went to the funeral without me and you sleep alone with my dogs, my pack, my children in that dingy warehouse that houses your business, and there is nothing I can do and nothing I want to do to bring you back.  You must come back on your own in a way that we can both manage to live with.

And in the meantime I have The Blind Lady Who Knits, The Mother of Five Children, my Wise Friend, my Jolly Holly, my Butterfly Friend, my other long-distance friends and some much needed professional help – all helping me to see this woman of gifts and worth through their eyes so that eventually I can find her in my heart… and hold her close like a frightened child, until she is no longer frightened.  I become my own parent and let the evil messages I was fed as a child fade off into the ocean of love and mercy…

Becoming me

Two weeks before the Blue Moon

my lover left me cold,

At first it seemed far too soon,

at first it left me old.

But now I see a bit of light

where there used to be none

as the blind gave me back my sight

for they could see the sun.

Now fairies sprinkle fairy dust

upon my head at night

so I’ll wake up, get out of bed,

and not give up my fight.

For only I can save myself

with all this love around;

I’ll take myself off of the shelf

until its me I’ve found.

A wild Rose is what I am

no need to be ashamed,

no need to hate myself for this,

no need to be the Blamed.

I’ll focus on my will to live,

I’ll focus on my dreams,

creating love in all I do

and sewing up my seams.

I am not young nor am I old

but somewhere in between

and now the journey has begun

the journey – to be seen…

© NootkaRose September 17, 2012.

 

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This most desolate night – September 9th, 2012

It has been a week since my last posting and I feel all played out.  The nip in the air gets more cutting, the sun sinks lower in the sky, and I sit up late at night to write to you about my life because I cannot sleep.

Yesterday was the funeral of “uncle”, and now his spirit has flown away with the dragonfly to a happier place.  I wish he had taken me with him except that there is still a fire within me burning to be heard and to sing yet another song, always another song.  My weak body is screaming at me to let “he who let me down” go.  Yet I am a prisoner in my own home and have to rely on his coming daily to prepare things for me – so he can leave me alone, night after night.  There is no warmth, no closeness, no trace of humanity that I can see in this stranger.  Only a sense of obligation which pierces my heart like a poisoned dart.

Does it matter that I’ve been told this has nothing to do with me?  After all the blame I’ve endured from him, I feel beaten into the ground and so weak I can hardly stand, but the counselor we now see has stopped this.  He cannot blame me for whatever he is going through and so I must learn to stop blaming myself.  Had I more physical strength and the financial means I would not be as frightened as I am for my survival.

 I would walk away.  I would run away…as fast as I could.

But I have never been robust physically, and was forced to “perform” since a young child, like may daughters at the mercy of an alcoholic stage mother, or other parent.  I was taught to be pleasing, to do as I was told, to never think of myself and to serve others… especially self-centered men.  I’m sure there are men who are not self-centered.  I just don’t seem to attract that sort of man.  I thought, 25 years ago, that I had.  I was wrong.  I married my mother, thinking I had found a like-minded life partner. 

I have endured the silence of death, the denial of my spirit, and now the fire that burns inside of me feels nearly snuffed out.  Like a wild rose, crowded out by younger, prettier temptations, I have become obsolete in my own eyes because the light has died in his, and because in the eyes of society, I may as well be dead.

This is what I want to save other women (and even men) from, if it is the last thing I do.  Live your life!  Don’t let anyone come along and tell you “No!” 

I’ve been told it isn’t my fault that I let this happened, that I was conditioned by many horrible traumas to allow it to happen.  But it has happened and now I must find a way to survive it.

The purpose of my writing has always been to share, both my laughter, my fears and my tears.  Right now, all that is within me is weeping.  My spirit is wild and cannot be contained in this weak body.  It is burning me up alive.  So I write another sonnet.  I love sonnets and have a vast repertoire of them.  I love the structure of the poetry I write now although I write free verse as well.  But my life is so very fragile at this time that  structure in my poetry is all there is left.

So be warned, you who would marry.  If you think it is all peaches and roses, I will tell you it is not.  If you plan to make your partner the centre of your Universe, don’t do it.  If I manage to do nothing else, let me help you see, through my eyes, the dangers of this road and if I live long enough to tell you more, I will tell you the story of my struggles to find myself for the first time in my life.

I have so many stories I would tell you, but tonight, on this most desolate night, let me leave you with a sonnet I just wrote and hope that I wake up strong enough to load it onto my site.  I love to share myself with others, but I have made many mistakes and would pass along my experience so that maybe some women (or men) can relate, can learn from my tales, and take something from them.

The poems are copyrighted so please do not take these from me.  They are all I have left… and a handful of friends who are trying to see me through this despite their own problems.

Below this sonnet I will also include a photograph that is meaningful to me.  I didn’t think I would live beyond the last of the butterflies.  I hope I am wrong.  I will write another posting later in the week…or maybe sooner if I can.  Remember, you are special, but only you can define yourself and let your spirit free.  I hope I didn’t find this out too late. 

I hope…

On this most desolate night…

Please give me hope on this most desolate night

and save me from expiring from despair.

Please show me how to find a hopeful light

within the lifelessness behind his stare.

He’s gone, and I’m alone. My shattered heart

needs time to heal, but time’s not on my side.

I watch myself come inwardly apart,

I watch for a safe haven – there to hide.

He took from me until I had no more,

he took from me the best years of my life,

and robbed my spirit of its vital core –

this is the price I paid to be his wife.

I ask, “What did I do to deserve this?”

I bought into the myth of marital bliss…

© NootkaRose September 9, 2012.

Posted in Life experiences, Marital problems, Poetry | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Blue Moon Angel

Hello again,

Today I have a story, two pictures and a poem I’d like to share with you.

Perhaps if I let give you a glimpse of who I am ….just a little peek, I might feel a bit better, a bit more comfortable, a bit more safe…for safe is one thing I do not feel right now and I find writing and sharing to be very therapeutic.

I love to write my thoughts out, and I like so many different things it is hard to know where to start, so I guess I’ll just start anywhere and ask that you please be patient with me while I sort my thoughts out and try to convey to you what it is like to be me.

A highly prolific poet, I have written over 1700 poems in the last 10 years.  Poetry can be a very cathartic tool for me and for many others as well, and is used widely for such purposes.  I have never attended a single poetry workshop in my life. 

Nature is another wonderful healing tool as well and although I am often trapped in my home and quite weak, I try to get out into nature as much as I can.  As it becomes increasingly difficult to do this, I see the seasons changing and wondering how time could fly by so fast.  It seems like only a short time ago I saw the beginning of a long awaited springtime, but now I am dreading autumn, beautiful as it can be.   And now I am inspired to tell you an important story about something that happened to me and what it meant:

We just had a blue moon and a very unexpected dragonfly came to visit me in my garden that day.  It was also the day I lost a dear one to cancer.  He’d been fighting for his life for a very long time and somehow I feel that this dragonfly, a Variegated Meadowhawk, was his spirit coming to let me know it was time to leave for better places.  At the time I didn’t know he had passed away for no one told me.  I just took the camera and some photographs before sinking to the ground. 

Here is a picture of the Variegated Meadowhawk.  I swear I have never seen one before let alone in my garden.  In late summer, this species apparently migrates south, which makes it even more astounding and precious a gift – that it would stop and wait in its very important mission to rest or maybe, just maybe to wait for me…? 

 

It is a female dragonfly, representing to me Nature’s vehicle in taking this beloved spirit to a warmer embrace.  Also, in many beliefs, as we change forms in life, we can also change genders.  I call her my “Blue Moon Angel” and she/he inspired this poem followed by one more photograph.   Writing this poem helped me heal a little, and I am hoping that time will help as well.  It is always hard to lose a loved one, whether to illness or separation.  Enjoy this little piece of me as I travel down the path of a new blogger…

Blue Moon Angel

Dear lovely Blue Moon Angel;

you came this extra length

to tell me you were leaving,

to give to me your strength.

At August’s end you left us,

before it was September –

this blessing that you gave to me

I always will remember.

You came to me in female form

with both moons at your side.

You told me to have courage and

you told me not to hide.

“Be rid of shame” you said to me,

“and always feed your spirit,

for there is Life still yet to live –

have courage!  Do not fear it!”

And so I took your picture as

you stayed for every shot,

until I could no longer stand,

and had to have a helping hand –

back on my feet I got.

Farewell to you dear Angel as

you migrate far away,

upon the wings of two moons –

may we meet again some day…

 

In memory of my beloved friend whom I knew as “Uncle”. 

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Hello world!

Hi Everyone!

This is my first blog ever.  I am brand new to WordPress and have alot to learn as yet so please bear with me as I stumbled like a blind woman, and, yes, even a bit crazy at times.

Hopefully I’ll have a post up and running soon. 

 

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