excerpt from my memoir in progress
My character in the story “A Meditation on Panty Hose” speaks to perceptions being not what they are. Perceptions shape our experience of things. My perception camera was broken for many years.
My broken camera accelerated my alcoholism. I believed when drunk, I was really sure footed although I was falling all over myself. I believed when drunk, that I was artistically brilliant even though I could not decipher my scribbling from the afternoon or evening before. When drunk, I was more social. When drunk, people tried to avoid me because I was stumbling all over myself with words that made no sense. When drunk, the world was right even when I came to on the bathroom floor of a bar having passed out and puked all over myself. I was beautiful; just misunderstood.
When sober without a 12 step program, I was terrified of everything. I knew people were talking about me behind my back, even strangers. I knew snot was hanging from my nose. I knew the government would come knocking on my door. I was important; I was a nobody. It was impossible for me to differentiate the false from the truth. Both my alcoholism and my schizophrenia kept me from seeing the truth for years.
Today, truth matters to me. If I have a problem standing in the truth, I reach out to friends who provide me with strong legs and broad shoulders. I have no need to be sheltered from the truth today. The truth will always set me soaring.