Poetry

Be careful where you store your secrets

There is no lock

On that vault

And that “friend”

May choose to find fault

Then all your secrets will be exposed

Or lost

For Sarainlalaland challenge “The Light”

I Challenge You!

I wondered why her light was always on

I could see no movement behind the pink curtains

Could the fan just blown them aside

So I’d catch a glimpse of what’s inside

Day and night

Always that light

I saw the window

Closed

I hoped one day I’d see a 2 year old

Facing out smiling

On the glass her hands pressed and nose

Yesterday I went to knock on the door

Taped to it was a note

“Please don’t knock. Yes, we are home.”

I asked the neighbors

No one knows.

Tonight though

I saw a shadow

A silhouette

As the blinds flew opened

And she looked at the moon

Opened for the first time in years

Like it was just barely noon

And couldn’t happen to soon

Her eyes seemed to fly to that moon

Like a moth

And just like that

She turned her light

Off

SoCS:stream of consciousness Saturday

I don’t know if what I have done this past week is uncommon or common.

I’ve had a muscle disease diagnosis for over 11 years now. I’ve worked my way up to driving a few miles at most and that has taken me over a year. I typically stay on the prairie and down the dirt roads behind our house. Once I drove my daughter 7 miles to a Doctor’s appointment because my husband was out of town and it was an emergency. It only took 10 minutes and one traffic light to get there.

This past week while on the prairie the car that I can drive broke down. It sputtered and puttered home. I had it towed to the mechanic. THEN the other car which I cannot drive had the AC broken. As the one car was being towed I thought I would just boycott alltogether the limitations on this muscle disease and drive the car I cannot drive. The reason I can’t drive it is that it causes extreme pain. It takes extra effort to push the brake and turn the steering wheel. This causes me to then have days of excruciating pain and sleeplessness. So in truth, I can drive it, I just choose not to put myself through that pain when I know the other car is MUCH less painful to drive and there is only about an hour of recovery time.

Both cars needed to be fixed. My husband had JUST taken both cars in a few weeks earlier for other issues.

I decided to do this on my own.

I got in the car and drove to the mechanic. 10.3 miles. 17 minutes. I made it there. Muscle disease out the window. I got into the shop to wait to get the AC fixed and did not have the forethought of not having my scooter when I got there, being around tons of men, cologne, chemical smells, PTSD…nothing. I panicked. I thought I was going to have a seizure. Too many men. Too much cologne. Inability to get up and move. Frozen. All things very common for PTSD. I felt very exposed. Fortunately, the mechanic knows I have PTSD. He came over, sat with me, explained what happened to the AC, walked me out to the car, made sure I was ok, and then even came and checked on me again as I was alcohol wiping off the car. I also didn’t realize I’d then have to drive home! After all of that. I made it home and made it to the shower and made it to my bed. My body had succeeded and then the pain set in. Despite multiple pain meds, relaxants, and pain patches the pain was unbearable. YET I still did it. I fixed the car by myself. I had no cheering squad waiting for me to celebrate my 20 mile victory but I celebrated in my mind.

Denial is just a funny thing and I have thought about it multiple times since that trip.

I could deny having a muscle disease. I could even accept the pain that would go along with the denial. There is no denying the physical pain I am feeling right now as I type this. Even my fingers and toes hurt. But I can still push through the pain and do this, type this, get up and put in laundry. The weakness that happens because of this muscle disease I cannot push through or deny. If I can’t move, then I can’t move. My right shoulder is atrophied and my left leg is atrophied. I know those weaknesses and limitations and I can work around them denial or not.

So, I don’t know how many others with physical illnesses find it a common thing to just do what I did and say screw it I’m doing this regardless of the consequences.

I liked the fact that I had the ability to deny the disease and push through it even though I could not deny the later pain.

What I could not deny is what was in my brain.

I wish I could pretend I did not have PTSD. I wish I could just deny it, push through it, and act like it isn’t there. I wish I could deal with the pain, deny anything that happened that has caused the pain and just DO IT. Do ANYTHING.

Some may think well I did. I sat in that mechanic office and I DID deal with the PTSD. I didn’t. There was no dealing with it. There was no pushing through it. It was just as excruciating as the pain in my body but I couldn’t push through it in a way that made me feel invincible and strong like I did with pushing through the muscle disease. PTSD made me feel small. It made me feel angry. It made me feel defeated, hopeless, powerless, and as if life were just meaningless.

Yesterday, my other car was fixed so I had my husband take me there to pick up the car and drive it home. After countless uber experiences with clothes that had to be thrown away due to cologne and smells I thought, why not do this again! This car I could drive with no pain, the mechanic office was closed. I just had to get there, wipe the car down of cologne smells, and make it home. Denying again my muscle disease.

So I did it.

I made it home.

The pain last night from all of this was a cumulative affect. I started to cry. I never cry. I hate to cry. But I did.

I can deny or try to deny all of this in my life as much as I want to. It’s probably pretty common for most people do try to deny the bad things. But in the end we have to face the truth of it all. Last night I faced the truth of the pain in the PTSD and in my muscles. How difficult it was to do such a seemingly simple thing to most people. It was not simple to me. And I know it never will be. Common or uncommon, denial is a normal stage to go through to cope. I wish I could live in it like most people around me do. Just deny everything and pretend. My mind and body won’t let me do that. The truth truly does hurt. It hurts my physical body and my mind. I wish I could turn it all off. Turn the switch. Turn off at least a few switches to lessen some of this. I can’t. So I’m resting and writing hoping to find some peace and calm for body and mind. If that doesn’t work I will have to get out my camera. I feel tears coming again though at the realization of my life. I wish there were a switch for that too.

This post written for Linda’s prompt using the letters “mon” which I used as the word common and uncommon

https://lindaghill.com/category/stream-of-consciousness-saturday/

Poetry

I talked to Jesus today

I sat under the cross and prayed

I talked to Jesus today

I sat on the wet grass and prayed

I talked to Jesus today

We have many heart to hearts

Sometimes in the car

Sometimes in my back yard

Sometimes as my tears fall to the ground

He always hears the sound

I talked to Jesus yesterday

I felt Him

In the wind

I saw Him

In a little bird through my lens.

I heard Jesus

Speak to me

Not through speech

But as my very own heart beat

I knew Jesus today

As I looked into my daughter’s eyes

His spirit does not hide

In those He does reside

I will talk to Jesus tomorrow

In my victory

As well as my sorrow

Some days He is my only friend

Some days He is the only one who listens

Some moments I feel His love in my husband

I will talk to Jesus now

As I lay my burdens down.

Poetry

*image of a flower underwater

Sometimes

I still hear her sing

Most days

I just watch as she sinks

The demons come

Nothing stops them

She just runs

Around each doorway

They lunge

She unraveled

To become

A song

That is left

Unsung

Where is my help from above?

Why can’t the antidote be love?

The Doctor’s say “ Have faith in me.”

“Physician heal thyself” Luke 4:23

Then maybe I will believe!

Opaque is all I see

No transparency

No clarity

I mourn her

Though I know her heart beats

I have sorrow for her suffering

That buries me in the deep

Because sometimes

I still hear her sing

But most days

I just watch helplessly

As she sinks

Since I failed at convincing myself…here are some photos

I tried very hard to convince myself I did not have a muscle disease. What if…I tried all day. It didn’t work. I have a muscle disease. So, I took some photos.

I took the car out that I CAN drive because I can put myself right next to the wheel and my arms aren’t extended. It died on the prairie. How fortunate for me that two little birds kept me company! I tried the car a few times. It didn’t start. So I took pictures. I mean what else could I do! After awhile it started and I inched home. I was then convinced I could drive our other car. I couldn’t. So I saw this snail. He and I hung out for a bit. What else could I do! It was raining and windy and I thought well maybe it will start again even though it smelled a bit burned up.

So, my car is dead but at least it got me home before totally dying. I was only a few miles away but that is scary for a person out without her scooter and far greater reasons. But all turned out! For the moment I will not think about the stress, anxiety and ptsd moments that will involve me getting it fixed and I will just look at my birds and my snail that were the positives of the day. Have to end it on a good note if at all possible and it is possible right now. So here are the birds and the snail:

Gatorland waterski show team unexpectedly revisited

*photo taken by me of me with a piece of tape over my mouth word written “speak” about to be ripped off by me with make up tears running down my face.

Today I was searching for my blog online and I ran across the blog I wrote about Gatorland waterski show team. It was on google. It used to be the top of the page when searched but now their own facebook page is top of the google search. I looked at the page. On their cover page is my brother jumping the ski ramp. I knew right away. He has perfect form. I watched him jump that ramp a million times in the years we skied together. We skied in shows all over the United States. I learned how to ski when I was 4 years old. I had my last waterskiing job at Seaworld when I was 18 years old.

It was coincidental, although I don’t believe in coincidences, that my husband and I were out to dinner last night. The table next to us were discussing their trip to Costa Rica and I was immediately taken back to when I was 14 years old and the Gatorland ski team flew there to do a ski show. Then today I am looking at old familiar faces from 30 years ago.

Those faces knew I was being abused and let it happen. Upon learning the truth those faces did NOTHING. No lives changed. The world kept spinning as I was tossed off into oblivion.

My brother kept skiing with them.

A number of months ago he sold that house on that lake with the ski team. I went back to the house to say goodbye to that “world” in a blog titled “Journey back home.” I didn’t expect to see that lake ever again much less my brother who has not spoken to me for 3 years. Infact, I had come to terms with not even having a brother anymore.

I saw his face on the cover of that ski team’s facebook page and I was unable to breathe. I started shaking. I thought I was going to have a seizure. I kept saying outloud “ Please God say that is NOT my brother skiing with them again.” I even went in to ask my daughter, “ Is that Andy?” It was. It broke my heart. Seeing him skiing with them again after these 30 years, after selling the house, after my saying goodbye to the house and the memories (on my own), there he was.

I don’t know what upset me most. At first I thought it was related to him and the message I felt he was telling the world, the ski team, all of those that allowed me to be abused and stuck by the abuser, that I was not believed. Then, I thought, how can I be upset about someone that never stood by me anyway?

I truly could not breathe. I was having a panic attack. It was different than a PTSD episode. I was not used to this. I walked out of the house and just kept walking.

I walked farther than I have walked in 11 years. Nothing was in my mind. It was a blank slate. No flash backs. No memories. Nothing. Shock perhaps. As I walked back I saw the flower I had left in the road to take pictures earlier in the day and it was surreal, as if I had not even taken those pictures.

I sat in a chair in the garage where my husband repeatedly checked on me. I looked at my wheelchair and my motorized scooter being charged. I felt beaten and defeated and stupid for just mindlessly walking like that. My leg is not letting me forget how stupid it was as I type this.

I sat and pondered what I was so upset about. Seeing the faces of those who did not defend or protect me? That they get to keep skiing when I’ve just injured myself barely walking? That I fought so hard to be heard and protect any other girls from that team and felt like I had lost?

Then I flashed back to the picture of my brother and the gatorland ski team members now. There are all new members. Young kids, young teens. The child molester is still lurking around in the distance I am sure as those who were willing to sacrifice me for him are still there. But, instead of being panicked and worried for the girls there I began to wonder. Did I plant a seed? Do the other members and their parents know about what happened to me because I DID tell my story on my blog as well as painting it on the ski jump when I was 15 years old.

Watching my brother jump the ski jump that I painted when i was 15, “Billy Banks is a child molester. Protect your children,” would ofcourse be upsetting even 30 years later. I was being too hard on myself for not pinpointing why I was so upset. Any one of you could list 10 reasons even if you’ve never read this blog before.

Instead of being panicked and upset over why my brother has made the choices in his life, and the others on that team chose the way they did, I can hope. I can hope that maybe with the new team there will be the happiness my brother obviously felt so much that he could not leave it even with his sister was destroyed by members of it. I looked at his picture and he looked happy. Happy to be skiing with them still. All the young teens looked happy to be doing what I once loved so much.

I can only hope. Hope that those parents watch their girls. Hope that the happiness of performing and competition waterskiing does not come with the rape and molestation for any of them. I hope that all they get from being on that team is happiness. What more can I do?

I’ve spoken my truth. I can only hope for them.

*photo of me waterskiing (the angry face emoji is the home of the child molester)