“I am convinced that there are universal currents of Divine Thought vibrating the ether everywhere and that any who can feel these vibrations is inspired,” writes Richard Wagner. Are the vibrations stronger when my mind is sick? Sometimes I think so. I need people to remind me of how it is when I am at my worst. I am convinced the government has my name and needs something from me. The something has never been clear to me. I am convinced there is a dial attached to my brain that can be turned to various frequencies. Bugs are crawling underneath my skin and rats are covering the floors–I do kind of like the rats. And on and on it goes.
I am removed from the world of a psychiatric unit. A Japanese fighter fish jumps from one bowl of water to the next. There is a plastic castle in one bowl and a pile of rocks in the other. Today, I am with the rocks. I drain the bowl, put the fish back with the castle and allow decorative weeds to sprout from the crevices of rock. Weeds can be beautiful. I pull them from the rock and flatten them on paper with a roller. I sign my name to them knowing I am the weed, flattening myself to the wall of a common reality where love prospers and cookies can be baked. Add milk. Delight in the curved edge of the kitchen chair. Taste the sun bouncing off the table and later, allow the moon to reflect off my glasses. The glasses, not the same pair I wear when visiting the psychiatric unit.
I turned 50 last week on the 27th. Amazing. I didn’t expect to live past 18. I’m happy to be fifty and look forward to the coming decade. Work spoiled me, cake and card. My friends spoiled me with a potluck. I picked up the cake. It weighed at least 8 pounds. Huge. Below is an excerpt from my second book..title unknown, yet to be published, yet to be finished.
Dear Behavioral Health Patient, Be glad you missed the heart attack. It can be worse–you could be blind. I understand you stumble around the unit, shamelessly in your gown. I’m glad you are giving the medication a chance, although the side effects are real. A rat flattened itself, lost its bones, squeezed through the door jamb. It was quite the odd thing, but then you looked away and the rat went missing.
Thank you for your readership.
It is good to feel alive, and good to feel well. I am glad Guy is not around when I wake up. I’m grouchy before my first two cups of coffee.
excerpt from Mind Without a Home
I want what lies beneath my madness. It is warm there. Thick there. Strong there. It is a place where Guy can rest his weary head on my shoulder, nestling into my long curls. I want the time I touch Guy to always be electric and new. This can be as long as my heart pumps blood to my mind, reminding me that madness is just a temporary thing. Whipped cream on coffee can be skimmed off, leaving coffee full and warm. Guy visits me where the birds dance hearts in the air above. Love and happiness lace my bones like liquor soaking cake.
I’m entering a couple of excerpts from my book. If you want more excerpts please let me know, or less, let me know that too. Yes or no, it’s all good.
It’s the nature of night to be dark, but then the moon gets thrown in to pull at our bellies, to pull us right out of our pants before we become lost like a black ant in the bottom of a black bowl.
As for mental illness, I struggled. The plague had yet to catch me completely. I thought of it as a Stephen King novel. I knew it was there, I knew something was happening, but in the first 150 pages of a 500 page book, it had yet to reveal itself. I still had time before my heart was cut out and my mind completely poisoned.
Today, I will go to the movies; something I couldn’t do when my mind was wrapped in sickness. It feels lovely. And I will of course be accompanied by the love of my life, Guy. We have been together for eleven years. Amazing. Thank all of you for being out there.
Today is June 8th. I am alive and well.