queen of the imposters

it’s my grandma saying
“you’d be so pretty if only you dressed like a girl”
it’s my parents saying
“writing is a nice hobby, but what will you really do?”
it’s that boyfriend saying
“you might be sexy if you started jogging and lost some weight”
it’s the father of my children saying
“why do i have to work why you do nothing?”
the father of my children
questioning all my decisions while offering no help
the father of my children
insinuating i’m doing it all
wrong….
but they don’t even know
they don’t even know what they have done to me
that they have become a little voice in my head
telling me i’m an imposter
when i wear girl’s clothes & pretend to be pretty
i’m an imposter
when i say i’m a writer
i’m an imposter
when i feel sexy
i’m an imposter
when i try to mother my children….

a friend of mine was talking about how the judging voice in her head was “the white lady.” this made me wonder what the most disruptive voice in my head looked like.
so i meditated & journeyed into myself to confront the one who whispers “imposter” whenever i try to do certain things.
i couldn’t find anyone. no one came forward. i called & called, but no one answered. i assumed they were hiding from me.
but then last night as i lay in bed after being screamed at by my ex-husband who was visiting for our son’s birthday, i realized, my imposter voice was there…they just didn’t realize i was talking to them. they are oblivious to what they are doing to me. they think they have done nothing wrong. they see themselves as completely innocent.
this made me realize i need to start being oblivious to it as well. just drown it out by proclaiming, “i am not an imposter. i am a good mother. a good writer. i am pretty & goddammit, sexy too.”

breaking waves

the ocean of me
is trapped
in a bottle
kept on a dusty
shelf
i am the crashing
waves
the storm soaked sea
i am a siren
who has been
silenced
i long to shatter
the glass
of that bottle
escaping his hold
but
he has made me
afraid
of making a mess
he has taken
my boat rocking nature
& left me
feeling
helpless.

contemplations on why i am unable to break the bind that my ex holds me with. i don’t want to be with him, and i wish for a world where i never had to see him again…. but as the father of my children, i have to try to be tame towards him.
but it’s more than that. i feel like he has somehow silenced me. it’s one of the reasons i left him. i am muted when i am with him. i am not allowed to be mean…to be my feral self. he is able to turn me into someone i am not.
but why do i let him do that to me?
that’s the million dollar question.
if i can tame the chaos of my life to meditate on this, i will.
i truly believe, that if i can break the bind he has on me, i will be a better mother & a more confident person.
it’s been almost twenty years of this. such a big part of my life ensnared. it was better for awhile, when i only had to see him on drop offs & pick ups…but since he has been unemployed, he is insinuating himself into my life more than ever…& i let him? why do i let him?
why am i afraid to tell him “no”? why am i afraid to stand up for myself?
i just want to be free again. why can’t i figure out how?

maybe

did i embrace
the masculine in me
because
i could not trust
that the feminine
had any worth
or
if valued
valued for all
the wrong
reasons
was i safer
in my masculine
an identity
that would not
betray me?

random thought on nature vs. nurture, i guess.
i accept that i have a very strong masculine side for a woman. i always have for as long as i can remember. but was i born this way…or did i default to this setting due to the dangers of being a girl? i was born into a catholic farming family where “you only need one girl” but out of six, there were four girls born to my parents.
the catholic church was quick to tell me i didn’t matter
the matriarchs of my family quickly echoed the message
and a patriarchal society never lets a girl forget how disposable she is….
so
fuck me
did my sensitive nature embrace my masculine after a quick survey of my abusive surroundings in order to survive being a second-class citizen? or was my masculine nature something as innate as my “man hands” and stout build?
hmmmm….

one thousand cuts

just because what he does
isn’t the worst thing
he could do
just because it isn’t
completely
wrong
doesn’t make it
right
is death by a thousand cuts
any better
than being destroyed
all at
once?

more thoughts on the “little crimes” done by past boyfriends & not-my-boyfriends. i got some texts from mr. 2-to-tango (who apparently reads my blog) after each of the last two posts…but i did not read them. so!
my dreams have moved from oceans to smaller bodies of moving water. i am taking this as a good sign. like maybe i am getting some direction? direction would be nice.

don’t put that in your mouth (a cautionary tale)

you ever been with a guy…not really a boyfriend…just some guy & you’re messing around with him & maybe he’s just given you some pretty lackluster oral & now he expects you to return the favor but instead of asking he just starts pushing your head towards his crotch?
and you wish you could say, “hey! motherfucker, use your words. i’m a person, not a sex toy,” but instead you just play dumb until he gets all frustrated & pitches a fit like a demented toddler, muttering “it takes two to tango” reminding me of my psychotic school bus driver….
and is there anything scarier than naked adult male anger when all you want is to feel safe & valued? don’t you just want to go back in time to protect younger, dumber you? to kick those assholes in the balls & say, “who the fuck are you to treat me like this?”

this came pouring out of me at 2am this morning when i was trying to fall asleep. twenty-four years after it happened.
why did i contact him again? why did i still think of him as a “good guy” despite my most vivid memory of him being his yelling, “it takes two to tango!” when i didn’t want to suck his cock?
why do i convince myself–why do i second guess myself–why do i tell myself it’s no big deal when it is?
like when my boyfriend punched the wall so hard he broke his hand because i wasn’t having as much sex with him as he wanted?
at least he wasn’t punching me–right?
at least he wasn’t raping me–right?
so i tolerate it? i spin it in my head. say, “he didn’t mean it. he was just ___” fill in the blank with whatever will convince you to stay when you really really should go.

i had a dream that i was in a deranged & dangerous building that has been a regular dream location. however, in this dream the other night, i knew it was the last time i would be there. hopefully the building represented toxic men.

“good night”
8X10 inking on watercolor paper
$45

burn the world down

i am feeling a bit angsty. pissy. out of whack in the zen.

february 23rd was the wedding anniversary of my dead parents. they were married on february 23, 1963. my brother was born november 30, 1963.
why would anyone plan a winter wedding in illinois…hmmmm.
so during my hike/meditation on the 23rd i started thinking about it. my dad’s family always treated my mom like a second class citizen. like “white trash.”
did they get married because she was pregnant? she always claimed she had her period on her wedding day…but i think that might have just been a cover?
so i started thinking more and more. places i have not let my brain go before. whether or not my mom “trapped” my dad into marriage, his family must have believed it, & i suspect that he also did.
i tried to think of an instance where my dad showed love to my mom. i mean, he was obviously attracted to her sexually…but thinking back i cannot think of a moment where he showed her love. devotion. usually he was ridiculing my mom. acting like he was better/smarter than she was. often times he was downright cruel.
she, however, was crazy about him (literally at times.) she loved him & was utterly devoted. even dying within a year of his dying.
then–after reading a romcom novel & really really enjoying it to my own dismay & then wondering why i felt so uncomfortable with romance–i started applying this model to my own life. and found a disturbing pattern. let’s use dusty as an example….
when dusty was devoted to me, i looked down on him…considered him beneath me.
when he abused me, i loved him and became almost manic in my devotion.
and i could apply it to other relationships.
many other relationships.
my model taught me to ridicule men who are devoted to me while adoring men who abuse me.
fuck.
fuck fuck fuck.

but now i am aware of this. now i can start healing it.

ps. on 2-22-22 tuesday, i thought it was a good day for a love spell…so i did that. i did a love spell for my perfect man.
of course, i will keep y’all updated on my magical pursuit of true love.

“burn the world down”
9X12 inking on watercolor paper
$45 plus $5 shipping

inner child problems

my masculine is the
protective & loyal dog
my feminine
is the fiercely protective
bear
so who keeps opening the door
for strangers
with ill intent?
who keeps opening
my arms
to energy vampires
& narcissists?
there she is
my inner child
who grew up
confusing abuse
for love…
there she is
my inner child
ready to rescue
everyone else
because she hasn’t learned
how to be her own
hero.

i used medicine cards to determine my masculine & feminine spirit animals. totally accurate.
so then i was hiking a cold & snowy hill recently, trying to figure out why i could have such strong protection, yet still fall victim to abusive partners & friendships. i wanted to figure out why i let myself be such a victim when i have such a self-protective nature?
i need to figure it out so i can knock it the fuck off.
this is what i came up with. my inner child (and my empath) are mucking up the works by ignoring red flags in favor of trying to save everyone.
okay…
so now i just need to figure out how to teach them how to love themselves first? easy, right?

blanket of anger

my anger is a blanket
i cannot
get out from under
no matter
how i struggle
i am suffocating
in my own
anger
i kick & kick & kick…
he cannot hear me
no matter how loud
i scream
& all i can hear
is echoes of him
in our children
i scream
& scream
& scream
& no one hears me
& nothing changes.

yup. more angst at the ex. fuck me when my kids start trying to gaslight me in a little mini-him gesture. i have no tolerance for it. i call them on it.
do i call him on it?
would it do any good?
i guess, at least, i can hope to raise a handful of men who do not gaslight. who know better….

from my crow’s nest

(i am re-posting this as i totally forgot to include the illustration last time i posted it–oops!)

it took him years
to pull apart
the fabric of my joy
i guess its a credit to me
that the cloth was strong enough
to hold my joy
through so much sorrow
i must be like a crow
stowing away
bits of glitter
& strands of sparkle
weaving them into a nest
to hold my joy safe from all the hard stones
of pain
& isolation
some strange crow
in a fantastic nest…
now an older me
a wiser me
is tasked with collecting my joy
back to me
once more
rebuild the nest
reweave the cloth.

my ex is in my thoughts a lot with two of our children having birthdays in october. i am trying to give myself credit for surviving him. i did survive him after all.
also! in an attempt to value myself, i have decided to start submitting poems, stories, & art to magazines & whatnot. i haven’t actually done it yet, but i do have a list of possible periodicals to pester.
once upon a time i had the hoo-ha to send out novels & novels to publishers…back when you had to supply an SASE with every mailed manuscript. it’s been awhile since i have had the backbone to put myself in the line of fire for rejections…. but, i am working on it.

ps. misha suggested that this was an inking of the sun & the moon 🙂

poisonous

my words are poison
& as much as i would love
to spit them at you
you will not understand my pain
you will not wither
& die
you will use my poison against me
you will use my poison to make your own
my thoughts are poison
but where can i put them
what can i do with this pain
how can i get it out of me
can i use my destructive urges as compost
to grow something beautiful & beneficial
can i find my meaning somewhere else
find my salvation somewhere else
grow without cutting everyone down
i have four children
but i am not a mother
how can i be
with all of this poison in me
i have to
have to find my meaning elsewhere
find my salvation elsewhere.

this is directed at my ex. i often find myself wanting to make him hurt the way he has hurt me…but i know from experience that that will not work & i will just end up hurting myself even more.
i was in a lot of pain for the birthdays of my oldest & youngest (one day after another) as my soul remembered the different pains of the experience of becoming a mother for the first time with an unreliable partner…& for the last time with that same partner.
the pain did lift…but it was intense while it lasted.
this incoherent vomiting of verse was my attempt to make sense of what i was feeling.

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