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Line Up All The Ducks In A Row

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Hello my good readers.  As I write this, it is 5:00am on Sunday.  I am thinking about a lot of different things right now, one of them is the phone conversation I am having with a friend who has to be at work in 3 hours and hasn’t slept at all.  Another big thing on my mind is wondering if I will be disappointed or not if I go try and see Star Wars today.  Then there is the part of my brain that never seems to stop, my critical voice.  In my head there always seems to be a dialogue.  What most often goes through it is distant memories of wrongs I feel have been done to me by random people.  There is the time some ex-friends of mine decided they hated me so much they would set me up to have a young woman we knew go through the motions of seducing me and then out of nowhere punched me in the face and had all her friends come out of hiding near us to laugh at me.  Then there was another time when I went to cross a street and was nearly hit by a guy and I walked in front of his car and he decided to use that as a reason to get out of his car and punch me repeatedly in the face while I was down and never fought back at all.  These things are clearly wrong, but the worst part of them is that I let them anger me now, years after I will never see these people again.  There are some things that help (and there are many more of these thoughts), one of them of course is medications.  I can recall being in the hospital and being off all medications and just being tormented.  Now it is sort of something that just bothers me, but it never seems to really stop.  The one thing I know that can help is meditation.  Simply sitting down, or even walking and counting or even just noticing my breath while I try to focus on clearing my mind of all thoughts is such a liberating experience.  It has actually even been proven to reverse brain damage in certain people.  I only wish I could take the time to practice it enough to really make a difference.

Aside from all that, Christmas is coming closer.  It is going to be a short and somewhat boring time for me I think.  I like it to be boring because it is hard for me to think about my mom being gone, even though it is now 7 years since she died.  I don’t think people really ever get over that kind of a loss.  I feel better about her being gone, but still sad.  I also keep having the urge to pick up the phone and call her, and I really wish she could have lived long enough to see me become a successful and published author.  My mom inspired me to write in so many ways.  At first she only really inspired me to read, but deep in me I knew that writing was what I wanted to do.  Even in elementary school I would write and draw my own comic books and I always entered any writing contests our school put on, not to mention discovering early on that I had a bit of a talent for poetry.

Sometimes when I think of my daily life and the voices/dialogue that runs through my head and how I often have to hide myself away and sleep for long hours at a time to decompress from a stressful week, I think I’m really messed up.  Lately I have been having problems writing short stories but I have been focusing a bit more on poetry.  All I really know is that if I keep writing every day I will start to improve, though I have a lot of improving to do.  It can be so hard to learn anything from reading books about writing.  Lately I tried paying a friend with a PhD to teach me how to edit my work and it got to be so expensive I couldn’t continue.  Fortunately in the New Year we have been talking about a different arrangement.  The main problem right now is just having too much free time on my hands.  I wish I could just write for 8 or 10 hours a day but that takes so much out of a person.  I have often heard from professional writers that the burn out time is about 2 hours a day which means 22 hours of tedium and wasted time, but 2 hours seems to be the most I can sit and write.  I can’t imagine that writers like James A. Michener wrote only 2 hours a day, or a lot of other authors did the same, but 2 hours seems to be the best way to get the most quality and creativity out of myself.  Please let me know if any of my readers have experience with this, I would love to share it on here in future entries.

When it comes down to it, there are some important things I have to remember.  I am a person with a severe mental health issue and I need to make my mental health a priority.  Medications on time, appointments kept, diet, exercise and sleep carefully monitored.  Stress kept to a minimum and work only taken on when it is worthwhile and with reasonable compensation.  Not that I mind volunteering, but I don’t consider a lot of the volunteer work out there to really be work.  I would love to go back to visiting dying patients, I greatly enjoy writing for my community newspaper as a volunteer.  But when I work very difficult jobs like the one I have setting up concerts, it better be worth it!  Until I can meet all those requirements, I don’t need to worry about being some great writer or changing the world, I just need to do what makes me happy.  Anyhow, I wrote a poem about poverty and charity and homelessness, which I am posting below, I hope you enjoy it!

 

Holiday Season

 

Around us children suffer, most are deaf to all their cries

People grow a little tougher, and each day part of their heart dies

 

Will you watch the pain around you getting worse and worse each day

Or will you force your very bone and sinew to try to find another way

 

Let your mind be opened, let your heart grow sensitive

Don’t leave the masses hoping that someone else will give

 

There are refugees with nothing, there are nations needing aid

Let your life mean something more than just working and being paid

 

Don’t just open up your wallet, don’t just pay instead of care

One person’s money will not solve it, we all must give, we all must share

 

Right here it’s dirty, cold and unforgiving on the frozen windy street

No one has any hope to make a living with no place to rest and warm their feet

 

This world needs healers, lovers, helpers, who aren’t afraid to lose it all

It needs food and love and shelters, do you hear that noble call?

 

Once I myself was sick and all alone, I had nowhere to go

I had lost my love, my mind, my home, I was hurting so

 

It ended with me living among the homeless, day by day hiding my pain

I felt so completely worthless, I don’t think I could do that all again

 

Will you push yourself to help the poor, give what you can as there is a need

Can you open your heart and open your door, set aside all selfishness and greed

 

I’ve had to fight addictions, I had to fight for my new home

I fought through more than one eviction, and I mostly fought alone

 

But taking the blessings I was given, I’ve made a brand new life

I’ve worked as though one driven, to put behind me all that strife

 

Remember that we all received a present, perfect peace, eternal life and bliss

Christmas day is when God sent it, he wants us to share that and our other gifts

 

December 20, 2015

Leif Gregersen

Memory Salad

DSC_0342The simple, unconditional Love that pets have for us.  This dog was so amazing, he kept bringing the water bottle back to me and it really made me feel cared for

 

the following writing is an attempt at ‘stream of consciousness’ writing in which the writer simply tries to let thoughts flow.  nothing x-rated, but it is hard to make things like this available to the public, very hard to admit that my brain isn’t normal, isn’t anywhere near normal and that my life can be a real challenge.

So many images floating through my mind.  So many past events, past mistakes.  I replay them all over and over.  They sneak into every thought, every word, every breath.  I pick up a comic book for that simple escape I used to enjoy so much and it seems each word is there just to taunt me.  An image of a cup of coffee.  Here it comes, I was just 16 and I worked at an all-night coffee shop.  One time a paramedic came in for a cup of coffee and he looked like he had been through the wringer.  I asked him how was business…  What a terrible thing to say, how can I be so horrible?  I walk with my head held low, so much shame.  There was a young woman when I was younger.  She was kind to me.  She was in some of my high school classes, we worked together on Shakespeare and even had after school jobs in the same places.  She would smile and I knew no joy in my life.  Every time she saw me she would smile.  What is she smiling at?  What is so funny?  Why do people smile?  The dialogue in my head never stopped.  Such depression, such severe depression.  I hated myself but just for my mom I wouldn’t kill myself.  I remember one of my first dates.  She was so beautiful, we had what I thought was the perfect night and at the end of it she kissed me like I had never been kissed before.  But for some reason she never wanted a second date.  I knew her brother and her neighbor and her friends and all of them got together in the darkest summer of my life to pull a prank on me that would make me hate myself even more.  I felt so unloved, so unlovable.  Everyone but my mom, who cared so much.   Cared so much but now she’s gone.  Six years now and still I think for brief moments that I could just pick up the phone and call her.  Then there was the other one, the girl I was in classes with.  I wonder if she liked me.  I liked her, she was beautiful, beautiful beyond description, million dollar model beautiful and she was always nice to me.  I barely knew her but a couple of times we talked–really talked, and she was kind and seemed to care and seemed to want to help me get help.  But I ran as far from any joy or peace I could run, all the way to the coast and still she was inside my head, my voices, my thoughts, replaying over and over all the things I ever said to her.  I made her into some kind of statue, some fake goddess that never could live up to the reality.  A couple of years ago I heard she got married shortly after.  Shortly after I tried to write to her and she told me to take a hike.  The guy she married beat her pretty badly but still it was her decision to make.  How could I love someone I didn’t know.  So many people ask if I’m married yet–how could I be married when I can’t even hold down a full-time job, how could I wed someone when I can’t fall asleep without pills and even then I wake up every two hours sometimes from a nightmare.  It’s all too crazy, it’s all too beautiful.