Moon Monkeys

•September 2, 2014 • Leave a Comment

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We’re sending land monkeys through space,

transforming them into space monkeys

searching for Mars monkeys.

We could pull it off:

 

Moon monkeys

 

(if they had proper space suits.)

We need scholar monkeys

(do you know how much education it takes to get to space?)

They’re dexterous enough.

 

Space people and space monkey

more equal than

Land people and land monkey,

because there is no world anymore.

 

They’re in space;

no cultures to define them.

They’re space-farers, 

obviously.

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I wish I was stupid.

•August 31, 2014 • 2 Comments

It would be really nice if I weren’t so *much* all the time. If I could just chill out and relax and be normal for once. Everything is such a battle, everything is do-or-die, everything is extreme. There’s no place for it, everyone is going about their own business, living their life, being alright, feeling bad and mad sometimes… but also watching TV and sharing silly jokes with their friends. 

Where did that part of me go? I lost it somewhere in the fight to wrench myself out of the clutches of despair. Where did the lighthearted girl go who made faces and didn’t take anything too seriously? Can you get that back once you’ve lost it? Have I really lost it?

Why can’t I connect with anyone? I’m no fun. I’ve lost the ability to have fun, because I’m such a fucking sludgy downer all the time. Too much for everyone, all the time. Too intense. Too much. 

I can’t lighten up. The stakes are too high, for me. I feel like I’ve been pushed into this fight-or-flight mentality by the requirements of life, and everyone else can do their shit everyday like it’s just stuff they do. The stuff I do takes my whole being, takes such a gargantuan effort, just to not shirk it off and live in my room all the time, that I take it all so seriously.

Who wants to be around someone like me? 

All I hear is, be yourself, don’t be afraid to be yourself, blah blah blah. 

But who I am creates this giant gulf between myself and everybody else. 

I wish I was stupid. 

Exploring the support services at Vancouver Island University

•August 27, 2014 • Leave a Comment

I’m going to go through the process of trying to get help through the centre for students with disabilities. Let’s see what kind of support is available for those with mental health issues in BC and how it compares with my experience in Ontario in 2009/10/11.

I approached the desk and said: “I’m a student with a disability and I’d like to see what kinds of support is available to me throughout the year, and how I can get involved to help support others if I can.”

This is a big step for me, that I step forward and say I need help, or rather, that I tried to manage on my own last year but that was a bad idea. That i had a mental breakdown or two, and could have used some support.

I didn’t say that to the lady at the desk though, I just waited, anxious.

Hers was one of, what I, perhaps sensitively, interpreted as scepticism. I didn’t know “the rules” apparently, is what her response indicated to me.

Not a word about what I had asked, but in fact she asked for formal proof of my disability.

Well I had that in my email, I said, and whipped my smartphone out to pull it up to send it to her to print, quickly and confidently. Yes! I am “officially” fucked up! Here’s a letter from my psychologist from a few years ago stating as much. Anxiety. Bipolar. Enough to significantly affect and disrupt myself and my studies.

She eyed it, and still without addressing my question or needs or general outreach for help, stated that it might not be enough. Um. What?

Oh, they need specifics. What does my psychologist recommend, practically speaking, that can address specific needs. Without those specific needs and outline of a plan, that I am supposed to bring, then they can’t help me.

Well I said, my disability has a lot to do with managing potentialities, rather than providing a quick one-stop fix for a concrete, ever present need. If I know I have supports in place in case of a crisis, then I am less likely to actually have a crisis. So, what is available in terms of support for people with anxiety and mental disorders?

She doubts they’d be able to accommodate me unless I can give specific examples of what I need. Such as, blah blah blah. I said, can I have a list of the blah blah blah? That’s really what I’m here to inquire about. So, I have to tell the support services what kind of support I need? That works well for someone in a wheelchair who needs a ramp, or who has a learning disability and needs extra time on exams, but what about for people with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder? What about for people for whom stress doesn’t always, but sometimes causes suicidal ideation? Can I get a no-questions-asked pass out of class, without damaging my participation grade, if I’m unable to get out of bed for depression dealing with the heavy subject matter I’m studying?

I feel too uncomfortable to ask her. She’s making me feel like a scammer. I’m articulate and well-put-together, so it must seem like I’m not actually in that much need of help.

That’s the sense I get when I finally get the nerve up to see what support is available to me throughout the year. I have an appointment to talk with the coordinator, as there are no registered psychologists in their department who can advise about the needs of those with mental disabilities.

This is inadequate for my needs. I can imagine my old, meek, angry self dropping out over this, feeling unwelcome and eyed with suspicion and given lip service from a service desk that fulfils some, but not all, of the responsibilities to those they claim to exist to help.

Seriously though, I’m not too surprised.

Bipolar: self acceptance, intensity, and suicidal ideation.

•August 27, 2014 • Leave a Comment

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Hey people. It’s been a while. I don’t particularly care. 

That’s my life! You aren’t, this blog isn’t, the only facet of life that sees me come and go as I please. My friends, my family, they all know the drill. Harassing me, or me harassing myself, for being a flake isn’t going to change anything. This is just who I am, and it’s part of a larger pattern that I can’t and don’t particularly want to break away from. 

“Time moves differently for me,” is the first thing that comes out when I feel the need to justify myself. 

Sounds like metaphysical bullshit, and it probably is, but I embrace it. Because I can!! My feelings aren’t cemented into the reciprocal cyclone of expectations that so many other people seem to hate. I hate it too, the expectations of shallow gestures and stock balm for superficial social wounds. Fuck you! If I love you, you know it, in bursts, when it matters. I know when it matters. I commit when I can, and when I can’t, I don’t, because I’m not down with letting anyone I love down. 

I know I would, too. Let people I love down.

When I was 15 years old, I tried to kill myself. Wowzah! What a segue! 

Yeah, I’m going that deep right now. Fuck you, deal with it.

I have spent the past 10 years trying to understand it, and slowly I’ve come to move forward and through it and incorporate the complex emotions that led me to do such a thing into my current personality. To protect myself, and to respect the seriousness of what it was that I was trying to express, through acting on my intense desire to be dead rather than alive.

“Cry for help” is a phrase that swirls around outside of me, but doesn’t connect with the actuality of the situation. 

It was more like, “Act of repentance”, for letting everyone around me down over and over and over again. People who had helped me, as I “cried for help” through other means. Messy room. Didn’t do my homework. Couldn’t follow a routine. Impulsive. Escapist. Whatever. 

The particulars aren’t as important as the overall truth that I have had to come to terms with: Who I am on the outside is so far from who I am on the inside, that I would rather die than to live this inadequacy for my whole life.

I wallowed for years, but in 2012 I decided to go full force towards becoming myself entirely. 

It’s like a gender identity crisis, without anything to do with genitalia. 

I am who I am, and I shouldn’t, and won’t, trim my wild hedges into the warped bastardized interpretation of humanity that has been spoon fed to me by mass media and unquestioned acceptance of what they teach in elementary / high schools. I don’t want to breathe in the stale bubble air, I want to hold my breath until I pass out. 

So that’s what I did.

But I’m alive, and have resolved to be strong, and to endure the negative side of being alive as much as any positives. Because my mother and father love me, and I am their only child, and I love them. That’s it, basically. I exist for other people, and I don’t feel comfortable interfacing with people in the happy, easy, warm waters near the surface of existence. Yes, this is pompous and “self-aggrandized” language, and yes, that is a “symptom” of bipolar disorder. Does that necessarily mean that I need a pharmaceutical cure? NO!

It means, put me to work! Put my skills to good use! I have helped many people who have come into my life get through very agonizing and painful situations, helping people not to die, helping people to understand and grow through empathy and exposing my perspective and soul. So what if I can’t always get up in the morning, so what if I forget to call on whatever holiday? Who cares if I haven’t called or texted or written to you in a year, or two? Who cares if the gift I made you is “worth less” than the gift you gave me last year for christmas. Who cares if you think that I’m “saying something” with a gift of a book? I don’t care. I would rather not participate than navigate that social cobweb of political bullshit that people who don’t appreciate the value of life and love put all their energy into. Fuck it! That’s not what life is about! Other shit matters more! We aren’t getting exploded by bombs, we don’t fear for our life, we have enough food to eat and if we don’t, all we have to do is walk safely through our paved streets to the nearest fucking supermarket stocked full every day of fresh goods to select whatever we desire to fill our bellies. Oh. How can anything matter more than that? 

Time is prescribed, and I prefer not to swallow the bitter pill. If you and I meet 5 times, twice within a week, the next time a month later, and all other times ten years from now, I am not in any way offended. That’s our narrative, between two individuals. That’s the trajectory of our destiny. It’s determined by our choices, but I don’t need a particular archetypal perfection to exist between friends or family members. When I knew, at 15, so deeply, that I couldn’t possibly change myself into the kind of person who does adhere consistently and reliably to that idealistic, perfect archetype that nobody can actually achieve and everyone seems to actually resent, I decided to apologize to all the people I was letting down by KILLING MYSELF!

SORRY! I was so destroyed and horrified by the idea that I can’t be perfect and that some parts of me are always going to hurt other’s feelings, that I decided that the only way to show how truly sorry I am in advance is to KILL MYSELF!

That’s serious shit right there.

That’s how serious I am, all the time, about life and being.

I have to accept that there are always going to be things about me that clash with the expectations of the people I love. I voraciously attempt to build up the areas of myself that I feel can balance out the negative traits that I can’t change, but if those parts of me that I actually like about myself are unable to connect with one person or another, then I suppose all they see are my flaws. Oh well, their loss, I suppose.

I accept the flaws in others, and that means I have some very hard-to-deal-with friends that I wouldn’t trade for the world. I get myself into complex social situations, and I am proud to say that I have learned to navigate those kinds of waters with grace and tact. I’m not afraid or hesitant to dive right in to negativity, and help deconstruct it. Poke holes in the logic of your depression. Break down barriers to your own happiness. I’ve done it. I can do it again. That’s more important than projectile-vomiting opinions and memes about what you read on the internet about the latest episodes of whatever TV show you mindlessly devoted hours of your life to. What am I supposed to do, pretend I don’t feel that way?

I am distant. I have a bad memory. I limp through life with crippling anxiety, but that has made me as brave as I am unreliable. I’m selfish and self absorbed and self centred and obtuse. Too intense. But I care so deeply about everyone, every stranger and every friend, about everyone’s deepest wounds. Both sides in the wars. All the women, all the men, all the plants and the animals. All the atoms in the oceans and skies and land and space. Everything. Everyone. Yes, it hurts to be this way. What am I supposed to do, pretend I don’t feel this way?

Can’t I be a separate unit of love that has it’s own gravity and explanations and patterns, like the moon? Like a comet? Why can’t I? I’ve got enough confidence, now, I think, to accept my flaws and be myself with great gusto. If you need help, if you need empathy, if you need perspective, if you need a safe place for a few days, or a few hours, or a safe heart to share a dark secret, I am here. Even if it’s been years since the last we spoke. Even if we weren’t ever really friends, before, and you just like the vibe you get from my facebook or blog posts. 

If you can’t accept or don’t like me, I don’t blame you. I won’t burden you with my presence.

But I won’t kill myself, either. 

– Amy

 

 

Please, please, please…

•August 1, 2014 • 1 Comment

Rarely do you just know,
That the day you’re in is one of those,
Look-back-on-it moments.

Today is significant for various reasons, and yet the only thing I can focus on is “am I losing my artistic nature?”

I am sad. I can’t make my life work well enough to save money or give me time to continue art-ing. Nothing in life makes me happier than to improve at whatever artistic pursuit I choose, but… I have no energy for it. Working every day just takes it all away.

It feels like a loved one has died in my heart as I welcome in this new era of beautiful lush green growth and lifeforce. A new life is born in my family today! A little boy or girl who I hope will love me and want to be around me and who will hopefully be happy.

Oh, the choices we make and the words we choose, it all means so little and yet… Some days it’s everything. Mostly I trust my gut but… Where’s art? Where is the time and space for it? I’m withering away without my pencil sketches and paintings and music and poetry and stories and research.

I need it, so bad. I beg the universe, I beg myself, please let me say the right things the right way and do the right things the right way to give me space and time to create. Please.

Lerve.

•July 30, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Alright, actual content.

If politics and paranoia are part and parcel to your experience of love, how do you know what is the right thing to do? I just reach out with my feelings and blindly grope for the shape of the truth, and I’m always at least probably wrong, but sometimes I’m right and it’s glorious.

I’m talking about action, in love. Initiating the experience, allowing it to be, allowing someone else to expect things from me. It’s not easy the way it was when I was a teenager. That trips me up; if it isn’t easy, is it wrong?

But I can’t deny that this challenging version of love is new and amazing, dark and strong. It’s burrowed into the strangest parts of me and threatens to support my weak parts, like scaffolding. It’s scaffolding holding up scaffolding, and we’re eyeing the ground between us. What can we build?

Nothing like falling in love to make traipsing across the country sting a little.

No, this is nothing, don’t look at this.

•July 30, 2014 • Leave a Comment

There is just nothing quite like knowing that I am sitting here, in my room, with my back up against a wall.

No, really, not metaphorically.

I love it because,

I can type what I want and there isn’t that all-seeing guilt of “are they looking are they looking are they looking..”

there isn’t that… discomfort or the sense that I should be writing something of value. Nope. Here I am, in my bed, tech on lap. Hah! As if I want to make sense!

Why bother. Too much sense makes people vastly unhappy. Or maybe that’s just my emo ego rearing its ugly head. I do have quite an emo ego under all these scaly layers of business casual.