Tag Archives: Family

Journal – On Overcoming Fears

 

When I was a kid

I was afraid of the dark.

I used to make myself walk down the hallways in the dead of night

With the lights off

Just to prove … I don’t remember what

Maybe it was pride.

Maybe I despised my own cowardice.

So I just looked at the light switch

Then stared down the demons in the dark.

 

I hadn’t gone to the dentist in eight years

A lost filling finally drove me to the waiting room

Where I sat, my stomach knotty with fear.

After that I kept up with my dentist visits

Through crowns and drills and fillings lost and gained

And stainless steel needles the size of Montana

Culminating in my most recent visit

A small filling restored with,

By my own request,

No numbing agent.

I found it was nothing I couldn’t handle.

Now when I go, I marvel

At my lack of fear.

 

I never allowed myself the luxury of feelings

Afraid that they would hurt others.

This has been the worst fear to overcome.

I have progressed from exploring my emotions,

To writing them out,

To showing them to the world

My family

And hardest of all, my dad.

Because I loved him the most

I hid the most from him.

Protecting him from my unhappiness

Afraid he would blame himself

Or worry about me.

Today he called me

Asked if I was feeling okay

He’d read my bleak poem

And worried.

I reassured him, the poem was old.

When I hung up the phone

I wondered

At my stability in the face

Of what had just happened.

Dad had seen one of my darkest pieces.

And he had worried.

But things are different now.

I can be honest with him.

His humanity doesn’t break me.

My own humanity doesn’t break me.

The self-loathing spiral

Never came.

 

Now I have to keep posting

As if I didn’t know he was keeping up on the blog.

Or rather, I know that he is,

But I am able to be honest now.

Sometimes I want to die

Sometimes I want to stab something

But mostly I love my life

And although I still cherish my family,

I no longer idolize them,

Or feel the need to protect them.

 

I have always considered myself uncommonly lucky

In family and friends.

Today I can feel lucky

And not feel guilty too.

I can feel grief and pain

Just as easily as I can feel love.

 

But most of all,

I can feel.

 

And I feel grateful.

And I feel free.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

Husk. Also my brother is amazing

Allow me a moment to brag on my big brother. He’s got a blog too, actually, on financial freedom.

https://goldengooseguide.com

He’s been blogging for a year and only had about twelve posts total but he’s already gone viral. WTF Josh. Of course he’s engineered it well with the social media, the eye-catching titles, and original well-thought-out content. He’s the oldest so he does everything well. It’s fascinating to me that no matter how similar we might be in genetics and values and upbringing, our blogs turned out to be nearly complete opposites.

I would feel competitive with him, but he’s so far beyond my limits that I just give up say, good for him. I love him tremendously, so I must be happy for him. And it helps to know, in my heart of hearts, that I can always move into his basement.

Welp, time to air my insecurities again.


 

 

There was a while there

When I wrote gold

I spun golden threads from flax

I wove silk from cotton

I was an unstoppable force

What happened?

I ran out

I spent myself

Now I’m just a husk

Remembering her glory days

A husk

So dry

So dry.

What is a husk?

Was I once a bright and sweet ear of corn?

What else has a husk?

Mummies are husks

Many plants have them

And so am I

 

My seed is gone, germinated

And all that is left

Is this husk

A reminder

That once here was life

That once

I too was human

And vibrant

And full

Pregnant with life

With ideas

With words

Words like you’d never heard before

I had rhymes

I had every kind of poem

All that I touched was given power

With language alone

I animated the minds of others.

Now this.

This husk.

This weak and tired

Crispy

Dry

Thing.

It’s fall

I’ve been harvested.

Nothing left in me

Until next spring.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

Things Grandma Had

 

I think I’m going to reduce to posting once a weekday instead of twice. My creative juices are starting to run a bit dry and need to re-moisten. You know how creative juices are. It’s hard to run with an idea if you’re not well-lubed with creative juices.

Well, this was gross. Let’s never talk about creative juices again.

 


 

Grandma had a gumball tree.

We would play in her yard

Climb the tree

She used to marvel aloud

at how high we could get

and we’d flush with pride.

 

Grandma had a kitchen table.

She used it well

Heaping it with purchased food

sweets the neighbors had given her

dishes her family had cooked.

 

Grandma had four sons.

Three with families

All tall men

Every able-bodied son or grandson

would bump their head

against the low-hanging chandelier.

It was a family joke.

 

Grandma had cable TV.

We would watch it

and eat ice cream from her freezer

unsupervised

late into the night.

 

We spent time at Grandma’s

watching TV

and eating

and talking

and eating

and sometimes she would take us out

to eat.

By the time we left her house

we had costume jewelry

or a dollar store trinket in hand.

She wasn’t satisfied

unless you left

belly hard-packed with food

and both hands full of gifts.

When we got home

we couldn’t eat again

for twenty-four hours.

 

Grandma had a lot of things.

Grandma was a hoarder.

She survived the Great Depression.

But she gave

everything.

She once tried to give me

functional furniture

right out of her kitchen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

Proud

 

Dad said he’s proud of me.

I well up inside at the words.

What the hell is he proud of me for.

And why should it matter?

I’m fucking thirty.

Part of me thinks, oh Dad, I don’t need that anymore.

Part of me thinks, what have I done that’s any good?

Part of me thinks, I really am something, aren’t I.

And part of me deep down

A very early, primal part

Starts jumping up and down and clapping her hands.

 

I have no success in work

I have no success in art

I have no success in home making

I have no successful mate

I have no success in health or beauty.

I do moderately well in most things.

Proud?

Of me?

Just… generally?

How does a parent think?

Why does he feel proud?

Maybe he’s just happy I turned out okay

Maybe that’s all a good parent really hopes for.

And he was a good parent.

He still is.

A really wonderful parent.

I’m proud of him.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Imagining Losing You

 

To lose you

Unimaginable

You are half of me.

You are always there.

When I need a laugh,

When I need a cry.

You know me best

You read my heart

You see my soul.

To lose you

Is to lose myself.

A vital organ

Roughly excised

By uncaring reality.

I have confidence in my ability to face anything

Only because you support me.

Nothing scares me

Except

The prospect of life without you

Makes me dizzy with fear.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

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