To Mourn (Poem)

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To Mourn

 

 

To mourn

where the darkness

squeezes, rips

my essence

until I no longer

breathe, care

 

It is winter in my soul

where the snow of pain

runs deep

its coldness

burns, hardens

 

Will hope

arrive, return

with the birds and flowers–

will my heart

ever

be whole again?

 

 

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A Writer’s Vulnerable Heart (Part Two)

It’s difficult to open your heart when its been broken time and time again.

The first time I remember having it broken was losing my best friend and cousin, Darren.  We were born one month apart.  Playmates at a young age; but things began to change when we were about six.  He kept falling down, and needed help getting up.  Next thing I knew he was in a wheel chair.  A few years later, bed-ridden with all manner of machines hooked into him to help his body keep functioning.   Then, he was gone.  Dead just shy of our fourteenth birthdays.

He had Duchene Muscular Dystrophy.

It was at a young age when I learned that we don’t live forever; that our bodies were fragile.  Mortal.  And that death was a very real thing.

Parents are supposed to be our protectors.  Not just for our physical safety, but of our emotional well-being.  But, even parents are humans…flawed…scarred…and their own hurtful pasts can sometime hurt the ones they loved the most.   As a child, it was hard to see this though; especially when one of them continuously tore you down with damaging words, that you’re not good enough, that you were at fault for their current troubles, and that you don’t deserve anything except pain and hell.  That same parent would continue to pound and belittle until they get the desired outcome…tears.

Hence, I learned to associate tears with being weak.

When I was seventeen, our family’s true matriarch, my surrogate mother and emotional rock as a child, my Grandmother, passed away of Emphysema.

Once in college, I turned my focus to hopes and dreams of a better, brighter future; however, at the age of twenty-one, I learned I was going blind.  As a result, I gave up on my dreams.

Two years later, I met and married Aaron.  I thought that perhaps my life will start to turn for the better; I was wrong.  Less than two years later, he died as a result of a car accident.

Twenty years ago today.  And I can still remember the events of that fateful day as if they just happened.  The heart never forgets no matter how hard you try to push it away.

Unfortunately, this wasn’t the last of my losses.

I remarried three years later.  He was my best friend from college who knew of my emotional scars, my hopes and dreams, my anger…everything.  Over four years into our marriage, I was nearly eight months pregnant, he began to have growing issues with breathing.  He went to our family doctor who ran a series of tests on him.  Next thing we knew, he was being transported to the hospital.  His diagnosis: Pericarditis.    They admitted him, and immediately performed an emergency operation to drain the fluid that had its death grip around his heart.  But, that wasn’t the end of it.  Doctors were unsure if this was viral or bacterial.  Bacterial would require a heart transplant.  So, while they ran further tests, they pumped antibiotics into his body.  It would be days before we’d learned that it was viral, not bacterial.

Ever since this event, intimacy has been an issue with me.

Five years after our son was born, I became pregnant again; only to lose that baby.

My latest loss?  My Dad who passed away less than two years ago from an aggressive lung disease.  He was only sixty-seven.

Now, I realize that death is a normal part of living.  The same goes for pain.  But there comes a point though when one suffers so much of both that they shut down emotionally to try and protect what’s left of their heart and soul.   The problem is that I have placed such a tight lid on my emotions, I don’t know how to open it.

The real question though- Do I really want to open it?

 

 

 

 

A Writer’s Vulnerable Heart (Part One)

     “Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy—the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.”  –Brene Brown
    “I can’t write to please everyone, but someone, somewhere will be touched if I put my heart into it.”-Sara Winters
    “Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.”-William Wordsworth
crying eye
My mind is full of rich and varied images.  Layers of story lines twist and turn with one another; sometimes overlapping, other times becoming as one.  Faces of characters float before my eyes with expressions of pain, joy, and anger.  They’re all there.  In my head.
    Yet, when I write them down on paper (or through the keyboard), the emotions are well, flat.  Stale.  Lifeless.
    I even had a few editors, two especially, who’d read different short stories and both came to the same conclusion:  my characters lacked emotions.
    Really? 
    Funny, when I “act” out various scenes in my head, the strong emotions would rush to the surface, and occasionally, I’d find myself crying, or laughing.   But, why can’t I make these same emotions flow through my characters?
    What’s wrong with my characters?
    What’s wrong with me?
    All my life I have suppressed my emotions.  Especially the tears.  For me, they were signs of weakness.   Heck, I even have difficulties with intimacy in my marriage because it requires me to be vulnerable.
    Vulnerability=weakness.
    I crave connection with people; yet I shy away from them.
    Fear.  Of. What???
    One of my biggest fears is ending up alone.  And that’s exactly where my current path is leading me.
    Sad, huh?
    No, its pathetic!
    Bottom line, I know if I don’t resolve these issues on a personal level, as a writer I will never truly reach people.  Touch them.   Because in order to do that, I need to expose my inner soul, my wounded heart; I need to show my vulnerabilities through the characters, reveal them all to the world; only then, will I be able to touch readers with words.
    If only…

Would You Read More (a short story share)?

dark woods

She hurt all over. Inside and out.

She wore no shoes against the jagged rocks on the trail, and no jacket against the skin-biting cold of the late autumn air.  She ran away so quickly there was no time to grab anything.

The pain in her chest throbbed as she tried to ignore it. She hated feeling this way.  It was a nagging reminder of all she had lost.

She stumbled on as she kept her back to the destruction that lied behind.  Black smokes rose to the sky as the putrid smell of burnt flesh permeated her nostrils.  Bile burned in her stomach as she covered her cracked lips with a dirt-streaked hand.

Images and thoughts tried to force themselves into her mind, but she shook them away.  No, she can’t face them now.  They would break her into a million of pieces; pieces that she could never put back together.

A snarled tree root suddenly snagged a foot as she tripped and fell to her knees with a whimper.  The impacted skin burned, and something warm trickled down that foot.

She brushed the once golden-brown-now-mud-caked hair away from her pale face, and stared down at herself.  The left pant-leg now torn which expose her ankle completely. There was a gash on top of the foot where blood oozed from.  As she sat on the icy, hard ground, she debated with herself on whether she should bother to continue.  With an injured foot, she’d either be an easy prey, or die from an infection.

Stifling back the urge to scream, she pounded the earth with both fists.  Hot tears blinded her as her teeth ground together.

Life was so unfair!  What has she done to deserve such a cruel fate?  What?!

The snapping of nearby branches startled her as she sat up and peered ahead.  All she saw was a thick canopy of dark hardwood trees.  A moment later though there were several shadows moving within them.

The predators have found their prey.

“N-no!” She rolled over on her knees and stood up. She then scanned around but realized that it was too late to run.  She reached down and grabbed a sharp-edged rock.

And waited.

 

Wednesday Tidbits

It’s been an emotional roller coaster since my last post in June.

June!

A dear co-worker and friend of over six years died suddenly.   I knew her health wasn’t good, and I also knew it was always a possibility….but gosh when it actually happened it hit me hard.  *Sigh*

This past Friday we had to put one of our cats to sleep.  She’s been sick (cancer of the thyroid).  She wasn’t eating.  She found it increasingly difficult to breathe.  It was an agonizing decision to make to put her to sleep; but we felt it was best for her.  She’s now in kitty’s heaven.

Pain aside, I did manage to post two additional chapters to the web horror serial, Redemption

Chapter Twenty-six

Chapter Twenty-seven

I’m going to try to enjoy my day off today by starting with a hot cup of coffee and a buttery bagel.

Happy writing everyone 🙂