[I] may be crazy but I'm the closest thing I have to a voice of reason.

27 March 2010


I’m the man in the box
Buried in my fate.

That’s my misheard-lyrics version of “Man in the Box.” And that’s where I’m sitting right now, squeezed into my box, afraid both of being crushed if I stay and of being eaten alive if I dare to venture out. There’s no a human being on the planet who doesn’t know this feeling.

So, there’s no Vermilion tonight. At first I thought I felt dissatisfied with last night’s post because the opening section needed an edit, and it did but nothing earth shattering. No, what’s earth shattering is the way in which my daily life, my headspace, my body, my emotions, my everything, is coming unraveled. So tonight I’m going to take a step back and let you all in on my headspace. I’ll return to Chapter 3 of The Movie Lovers in the next day or three.

Right now Alice in Chains is helping me feel some version of normal, though louder would be better of course, if the neighbors weren’t home. This is not unlike what I did as a teenager when I had headaches so severe that from time to time I would slam my head against the wall just to equalize the pressure. Somehow pain was easier if I had it on both sides of the skull.

No, I’m not beating my head against the wall, not even metaphorically. Okay not much.

Last night I had a realization that rocked my world to its foundation. My first response was to yell to The Powers That Be, “Hell yes! Bring it on!” No doubt those of you on Blip heard me. I was all about it. Then, right before bed, something else hit. It went like this. I am wrong. I am doing everything wrong. And there will be no correcting this wrong. I am so fucked. By that I mean, among other things, that I’m in danger of losing all my funding because of something I did, something wonderful for me.

Not surprisingly, today I unraveled.

I called my shaman and told him that I’m doing all the right things, but I’m still feeling wrong, inalterably wrong. It’s like I’m in a game of chicken, the silent treatment version of chicken. I remember this game. My marriage was built around this game. My childhood was founded on it. To lose connection with the people I love eviscerates me; I’m always the first to yield. I show my belly and then they say, You poor fucked up thing. We told you that you couldn’t do it. Now let’s start over. Here, you do it THIS way, by which they mean their way, always, because I clearly don’t know what I’m doing. At least that’s how it’s been up till now.

Last week I made an agreement with the shaman, the short version of which is this: he owns my ass. The point of this agreement is to keep me safe (read: he’s got my back) while I learn to see just very how submissive I’ve been in my life thus far. The most interesting thing is what happened directly afterward. I felt calm. I felt safe. I was able to detach from judgments about myself, and my choices, in a way that I’ve never been able to do before. I lived that glorious Zen moment for exactly three and a half days.

Then the sky fell and I became Chicken Little running around with my head cut off. No, that’s not a mixed metaphor. That is exactly what this feels like: fucked squared.
I’m the dog who gets beat.
Shove my nose in shit.
Tonight the shaman told me, This is what you get. No, not really, but it’s true. I’m clearing out all the old crap that doesn’t belong to me, and believe me it truly feels like crap, as in could I please just take a dump and let all this crap out. I got a headache trying to make enough sense out of things to be able to talk my shaman, but what he said was simple: This isn’t your crap. How many of you would kill to hear that? Really, he said that. It isn’t my shit I’m buried in and my job, he says, is to refrain from trying to make sense out what I’m experiencing, any sense at all. Just let it pass right through.

Okay now I’m having a flashback to Grandma with the enema bag and me pleading, “No! I’ll go. I promise!”

Fuck me.... Wait. I said I’d stop saying that. Bless me!! And just so we’re clear, Grandma wasn’t mean. Like my shaman, she was doing what needed to be done to keep me healthy. It still felt like crap. Feels like crap. The shaman says that every time I do something the way I’ve been told to it, it’s not gonna work, not anymore. Has he been spying on me? Up side, I get to be as willful and rebellious as I want. I mean, at this point who’s to tell me otherwise?

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