beauty & the beast

i stumble.
& when i do
i look to him
to catch me
& he’s all
“oops
butterfingers!”
as i go splat
sometimes
for good measure
he kicks me
while i am down
so why
when i stumble
every time i stumble
i still expect him to catch me?
why do i still
hold that burnt out
torch
why do i still whisper
“happily ever after…”
in my head
hearing that voice
“this time…
it will be different
this time…
he really has
changed”
so much  that i have employed
another voice
just to shout at me
“hey lady!
this ain’t fucking
beauty & the beast!”

don’t mind me. just working out some angst towards the ex. you know how it is. i think i’m almost done.
it’s that happily ever after that keeps me down.
not being able to let go of the dream of a perfect family. the great american sitcom family. yeah, there’s some rough times, but in the end, we all love each other.
except…
not.
no matter how i look at it. there is no possible way that what he thinks is love, is love. love doesn’t hurt people. go ahead, argue with me about it. but if you love someone. truly love someone. can you really rationalize hurting them? much less do it on pretty much a daily basis?
but, stupid me, it has taken a long time to learn this.
a lifetime of protecting myself enough just to fall on my face again when i believe a person has changed. when i believe a person actually loves me. when i believe a person couldn’t possibly hurt me…again….
sigh.
this ain’t fucking beauty & the beast.
yes, people can change.
but only if they want to.

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misha’s birth day

i know another reason why i’m feeling warm & fuzzy towards dusty right now. when we were married, i surmised that if we were ever trapped somewhere, dependent on working together to get to safety, we would die.

my observation was true of every time i needed him to be there for me.
except one…misha’s birth.

misha is my third child. my first two were c-sectioned because my body likes to take more than 42 weeks to perfect a baby–& doctors do not like to let a woman go much past 40.
so, twice, i let them cut the baby out of me because they said that it was for the best.
when i got pregnant with misha, i could not bear the thought of another c-section.
so i fired all the doctors.
problem was, none of the midwives in madison would support my birth because i had been deemed too risky.
i had never had a vaginal birth. i was 40 years old & prone to long pregnancies. these were my crimes.
misha is the one who suffered for  them.
i found an outlaw midwife who lived one state over & would travel to me when i went into labor.
second problem…i didn’t know what labor looked like because doctors had never let me get that far.
by the time i was certain i was in labor–& not wasting the midwife’s time–misha was on her way out.
she came out fast. relentlessly fast. none of the stages of labor i had read up on were observed by misha as she rocketed out of me.
there was one doula present and dusty.
we were in a kiddie tub on the fourth floor of a 30 person cooperative.
when misha was born, she was having trouble breathing. she probably just needed a few puffs of air to get her going, but none of us knew what to do. by the time the mom down the hall called her midwife to come help, misha was showing signs of seizure.
the paramedics took her away.
the NICU kept her for 12 days.
they told dusty & me, best case scenario: misha has coordination issues & learning disabilities.
worst case scenario: cerebral palsy or epilepsy
i cried so hard as they said that. my heart broke. it was all my fault. if i had just been unselfish enough to get the fucking surgery…to have another fucking c-section…misha would have been fine.
i waited for dusty to blame me. he blamed me for everything. it was always my fault.
this time he would be right.
except
he didn’t blame me. he told me it wasn’t my fault. he zoomed me around the hospital in my wheeled chair–being silly & sweet–as i was still too wrecked to walk much after the birth. he watched the boys while i kept vigil at her side. he came to be with her when i was forced to go home & sleep.
he took care of us.
he was there for me.
seven years later, just as i would remember & be traumatized by a bad event, the good things that happened feel as fresh as yesterday.
and i miss that version of dusty.

(in the NICU…& one year later when the neurologist said, “oh…nevermind.”)

don’t be sweet

please don’t be sweet
i can’t
bear it
with your playful eyes
if you are sweet…
it is so much easier
to hate you
i only want to
hate you
i cannot afford to
love you
to fall back into that
easy rhythm
of us
that close to
destroyed me
so please
don’t be sweet
with your seductive eyes
so sweet that i
remember
all the good times
burying
the bad times
reaching out
to touch you
knowing
if i do
i will be caught in a cascade…
i’m begging you
please
don’t
be
sweet.

so i had an on-again/off-again relationship with the father of my children that lasted close to forever & almost killed me.
it took me so many times of trying to leave him…& so many years to recover from his influence on me.
he is emotionally abusive, manipulative, & narcissistic.
but, apparently, i love him?
what the fuck.
most days i would not admit that. most days i would have a clear & close hold on to all the bullshit he put me through in the years i have known him. a shield made of bad memories.
but i saw him on tuesday…
& he was all sweet & silly.
he was dressed so strangely. unorthodox. which, of course, caused me to find him attractive. i mean, he is attractive–physically. when i met him he was kind of awkward & goofy, but as he aged he became gorgeous. so when a gorgeous man dresses in an unorthodox way–it has kind of a stunning effect…at least on me.
crap.
so now i am trying to hold it together.
to not do anything
slippery.

disappearing smile

i was so
preoccupied
looking at who i was
in our relationship
so bewildered
by my own behavior
by what i had
become
i never noticed
you
i never really saw
who you were
i pretended
you were
innocent & good
i trusted you
when you told me
you were perfect
because
what else could you be
if i was already
the monster?

i played around with this one a little. i don’t actually look like a cheshire cat…but he is one of my favorites in the land of alice.
plus i’m home alone with three cats right now and (i’m not a cat person.) so when i went to draw myself as a monster….
i mean, playing with hearts as if they are made of catnip? or, in the case of my cat roscoe, the thing you pull off a bottle of milk to open it. that plastic ring. a heart as a plastic ring? i mean, i did play with hearts…but only the still beating ones.
never realizing that mine was being played with as well….

okay…that might show up in pages to come….

so sad

i’m so sad
you guys, listen
i’m so sad
i feel like part of me
is missing
i know it’s a fucking
cliche
i know i am supposed
to be
stronger than this
but
i’m not
i’m just
so
sad.

tomorrow i turn 48. i am not sure how to feel. like i wrote some posts back, i cry…but i don’t know why. birthdays make me sad…but i’m not sure why.

i used to love my birthdays. i would count down from six months away. everyone would get annoyed with my constant talk of my birthday.

then i lost the love of my life due to my own damage. then i dated a psychotic narcissist for a couple years. then i got married because i thought someone loved me for real only to have him tell me, one month into the marriage, “i don’t think i love you.” then i was divorced. then i married a different psychotic narcissist and became the invisible mom. then my brother died. then i was subjected to a seven year long vicious cycle of abuse while trying to leave the psychotic narcissist.

now i am a single…profoundly alone…mom.
living in rural illinois.
having an everyday struggle with motherhood
while obsessing over that long lost love from the early ’90s.
and i don’t even feel like weeding my garden anymore.

tomorrow i turn 48.
and now i’m crying again.

adrift

he is so good
at handing his problems
over to me
waiting for me to fix them
so he can blame me
when they just aren’t
fixed
does he even know
what i struggle with
every day?
he is so good at showing
his injuries to me
getting me to cry
over every little bump
& bruise
to his heart & soul
does he even see
how my injuries
bleed out
next to his
& leave me
empty?

okay. maybe you will understand. dusty thinks i have written him off because he was “honest” with me & told me about his still being in contact with hello kitty fuckface (not her real name.) he refuses to comprehend that the reason i am telling him to fuck the fuck off for good & forever is that fact that i have been asking him since 2013 to end his contact/relationship with her. that there should be absolutely no reason for him to be “honest” with me about her because she should not even be part of the equation.
five years.
five years of his using this other woman to manipulate me. holy fucking shit. why have i let him do this to me for five years?
seriously. what is the psychology behind that? am i a chump? a masochist? a desperate & lonely soul? that fucking desperate? that fucking delusional. that fucking dedicated to a happy ending?
what the ever-loving fuck.
and now i find myself having to learn to just walk away. it is so hard…so hard to just walk away. to suppress that urge to have the last word. to suppress that need for him to understand–to just fucking get it for once. i have to walk away. every word i say to him. every conversation i have–it’s the sticky strands of a spider web. his spider web. to keep me engaged…he just wants me to stay engaged…because then he somehow wins?
i don’t fucking know.
or fucking care at this point.
he keeps talking about how we need to talk…thing is, he never talks to me. he never listens to me…he just manipulates and plays me like a fucking pawn in his demented game.

guess what, motherfucker, i quit.

unraveled

i don’t have any love left in me
like watching a cyclone
of bath water
circling the drain
is how it feels inside
me
when i look to see
if i have any love
left.

fuck. i just got another short story rejection. fuck. why does everything have to feel raw & calloused all at the same time?

i need to figure out, as always, how to make money. i am thinking…erotic comics? too bad i am so easily embarrassed by anything sexual. i’m going to go practice drawing penises now…circumcised or no?

fuck.
it would definitely help if a certain someone actually paid child support so i could buy my minions socks & underwear…. but, you know, some people are too special to work & have responsibilities. why grow up when you have me to take up your slack?

my flavor of the day: extra bitter.