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Tuesday, 6 September 2011

The Art of War - Surrender at Sunrise

I firmly believe in conserving energy for real eventualities so scant chance of finding me aimlessly jogging, walking or hiking, taking in scenic landscapes. Having worked really tough jobs in childcare, psych wards, trauma counselling and urban living proper, I relish the energising quietude of my darkened room and the coolness of satin sheets against my body. Despite it taking small forevers to achieve a fully restful state, nothings beats that place of dreaming and fantasising, and of course those trigger-moments at which the subconscious does its best work. And it worked very well until recently.

Somewhere between the medication, mood swings related to said medication, attempts at meditation and general life analysis at midnight hours, sleep has been giving me a head-start on some game and then promptly left me to attend to some other sheep auditing programme update! So at some point in the a.m. I surrendered, admitting that my evening from all-light-to-cave-night rituals were rendered ineffective through ... well ... mating and playing-hard-to-get cats, howling at the moon and their unfed state dogs, competitor insomniac drag car racers and the general unravelling of an overachieving, but resignedly tired mind. Promptly at 3am I woke to the sound of my beating heart and the need to remember the dream. My bladder has of late outsourced its alarm function to the Tarantino nightmare folder of horrors and thrillers, many of them scarily recurring, which rouses me at a tremendous pace, searching all the sounds for footsteps, alarms, door-bells, phones, snoring, fridge motors, the list is endless. Mostly though, I just need a quick trip and if I'm really quick can fall back to sleep almost immediately. OK, this is mostly during the vodka and shooter comatose campaign, but doable all the same.

Generally though, that jolt is the trigger for a much-delayed sunrise. So I have time. A time to pray and love and miss the many people who have crossed my path. For loves shared and lost, for lives touched and for memories no canvas could capture. I sometimes marvel at the technology our minds have to protect us and that space where you can no longer remember anything, not even a person whom you have loved your whole life.

Sometimes the forced wakefulness is  like the mother who has tired of speaking to you whilst you offered half an ear, and whose voice is now loud enough to silence any resistance or counter-terrorism or sabotage. It blasts all the regrets and recriminations and To Do lists, and Elimination lists with cymbals. And the Darkness, supposed to protect me,  instead offers no way out, taunting me from all over, reminding me that unless things were swiftly dealt with, they would come back, louder and more forceful than before. That suffices for me to make mental and other notes about what and who really matters, and to face my developmental demons and to cease interrupting myself and to debate with a view to reaching some kind of draft conclusion no matter how pedestrian (as opposed to the existential problem-formulation exercise I've embarked on years ago, so engrossed, I failed to realise the sands have run out of the hour glass and the session is in fact over)

Just before sunrise I am courageous enough to surrender, having fought the internal and external enemy, prepared for normal heartbeat, and to cover my battle scars in well-to-do foundation and double volume mascara. And no-one needs to know. In fact, most often I struggle to remember what the fight was about in the first place. But I know that it waits for me at twilight ... and through each victory I will come closer to wholeness and depth.

So 'Good Night' is just the war cry ... Game On!

Monday, 5 September 2011


My stalker did not materialise. So no closure on that score. He must've hitched a lift to his planet of origin. I am free to loiter on my own corner waiting for my own taxi which I will pay for with my own money.

The weekend was delightful. Lots of rest, punctuated only by midnight panic attacks mostly related to unfiled documents, undumped wannabe faithful boyfriends, tax returns and the return of the crazy, uncommitted (as opposed to non-commital) Hugo. He hovers around wafting of illegal crumpets or pancakes: sweet, syrupy, saccharine poison that fills my everything with absolutely nothing. Not completely convinced of the logic therein, but in my defence, most people get away with being just a little under the sanity radar with books of feel-good therapies that are enriching and lining some pockets and fixing nothing in particular. Red wine, and re-runs of old movies complete the scene. I am now au fait with the soundtracks, scripts and credits of all of them ... Who wants to be a millionaire? I could answer most questions about even the gaffers and the stunt doubles ...

Anyhoo, about Hugo ...
I want him to sign his own commitment sheet, to put on his own back-to-front pyjamas and take his own meds and sit quietly in self-imposed solitary confinement. No resistance. Just an acknowledgement of his unbridled craziness. He cannot be allowed to pretend to be OK, with that sweet smile and those cute words (the easier SMS's he does respond to) and the absent words (all the hard texts that require direct, honest, mature answers which never materialise). He has no airtime / signal? So what are those antennae for? No-one can be such a blue-eyed something of the selective everything gods. He selectively accesses reality and then waxes - all over in fact, but - lyrical about how he needs time to "fix himself up". My God, TIME is not the issue! It's all the other chemical, psychiatric and power-tool resources that we need to call upon. And of all the other roadworthy alter-egos he could chose, he clicks on Victim!!!???  Auto-programmed and dysfunctional, and believes in the way of the criminally uncommitted, that things are fine between us, and that upon fixing of self (other personalities nothwithstanding) things will go back to how they are supposed to be. Now that RED FLARE that so closely matches my pashmina, is my warning sign right there. How are things supposed to be when the foundation is pure unadulterated LIES and we are going to build on it? There's an intensely painful physical picture for me: me, blindfolded in crimson pashmina and whip jumping landmine-style over the cracks.  I'm thinking it's TIME for ME to keep it real for ME. There is always the danger for contracting some of these altered state bugs, and soon I'll be down with a nasty case of the NUTS and ROSES, and believe me, it sounds way better than it is.

This morning however, I was ready to take my power back, telling my alarm clock promptly that I would NOT be beckoned and managed by something so miniscule as to be absent on my bedside table. What with all the novels and the tabbed and colour-coded To Do Lists from the 1990's. The nerve or battery or whatever ...
So I swopped my oats for some marshmallows and winked at the Chardonnay displaying exasperatingly powerful come-hither behaviour as I found the milk carton, and quit playing  peekaboo with my Intray.

And as I started doing something to ease the pain somewhere, the day became lighter. The universe afforded me numerous opportunities to assertively yet lovingly send certain forces to the runway. I will be here when they return, but none of it is automatic or even mandatory. And upon their return, they should be ready and trained to deal with someone a little different.  I can no longer be the ATM, dispensary, shoulder, pillar, wheel-barrow, punching bag or dart-board. I cannot be Every Idiot's Fan Club and rescuer of Post-Traumatic Anything. I have my own stuff, and I can be strong when I've taken care of 'my things' (ironically one of Hugo' favourite references to me!!??) The metallic aftertaste of that irony! And as for the recurrence of unresolved issues, I have a karmic mission to complete. I DO NOT WANT TO SEE ANOTHER HUGO, PIERRE, TREY, PETER, JOHN DOE in another shape or form. Whether he has a butler or can be one, whether he can mix cocktails, sew buttons or harvest healthy crops of  mange tout, he must immediately to another be assigned. I will it so.

I declare the rest of 2011 stress- and stalker-free. By order!

And if signing on the dotted line is misread as earthspeak Morse code for the inter-planetary social network, to each his own. May they find their own (milky) way with strong teeth and all manner of Bones ...

There are many rivers to cross ... and I'm feeling very Cleopatra in a memorable sunset chardonnay on a gondola ... Cheers!

Friday, 2 September 2011


Onwards my journey to wholeness. Another instalment of the crazy and bored gods at my expense. Problem is it's now a daily occurrence and Bridge over Troubled Waters comes to mind.

Twice this past week I was waiting for a taxi. Whilst I submit to attracting the faulty and the foolish with loads of grace most days, PMS and ruminations of my still fresh seperation from Hugo had me in a pensive-bordering-on-perpetually-pissed-off mood. Thus I was not in the mood when a very scary, bird-like man came to stand alongside me after doing a thorough top to toe scan of my person. First he asked me where the taxi was going, but everything else pointed to the fact that he knew the area. I was also not buying the BS about 30+ boys with a built-in GPS for strip clubs and pubs, NOT knowing where they're going. Accepting too, that asking for directions is not part of their uber-man DNA, he has his whole life to figure it out. BUT, and there's always a but ... I was raised to at least be polite so I told him and turned my back, praying that he had passed the module which confirms non-verbal cues as the strongest indicator. But ALAS - in Wonderland - It comes back asking whether I worked in town. At this point I just ignored him and kept my back turned. 128 seconds later he pipes up claiming that he will pay my fare, to which I gave him an incredulous "Why?" and a part of my stomache ignited the bile and the concise but roadworthy F-word dictionary that I saved for Monday mornings, irritating colleagues and an all of my PMS calendar.

As I turned to tell him where he could shove his kindness (big neighing Gift Horse very close to my Gratitude Journal standing over the flush bowl), the taxi came, and as he held the door for me I realised in an instant that I could not get in. I could not do it. That I would have to diss the universe sending me this gift. That I would be late for my meeting, and through a power I now possess as casualty in Frivolous Hospitality Gods experiment, that he was a griller at Wimpy. From the deep fryer into the gas, it had to end.
Insult to injury, I attend a team building session later that day where we watched a Dewitt Jones clip called For the Love of it, about how feel-good comes from paying the toll fare for the vehicle behind you!!!!! Here someone was trying to do that for me and all I thought of was a tollgate on the Bridge over Troubled water and kidnap and human trafficking not through reputable travel agencies.

A day passed and there we were again. This time I was ready, feeling better about Hugo being further away in the distance - like that bridge, Sooooooooo over him. I was also enjoying Spring Day, feeling sprightly and knowing that sometime during this romantic drought I'd get to do it on the petals, champagne corks being the only real obstacle to floral ecstasy.

He looked a tad unsure of himself as we stood looking across the street. Well, I had been staring into the distance anyway, doing a mental Thanksgiving, when I was interrupted by the voice of It: 'So are you going to work?' and I couldn't help but marvel at the fine line between brave and crazy perfectly depicted by men forgetting that hormonal imbalance and homicide have a history richly documented, and some bodies have not been found because we deemed it so, and not for any other spiritual or medical reasons.
Each one has a season and as I looked at him I thought: Your Spring has come, dude, it is the Spring of your life and you don't even know it.

But I held my thoughts to myself and stared at him quizzically, until he dropped his gaze. And I stared at him still, trying to sense the roots of his incredible ability to irritate, harass and grate. No-one could be that calm, careless or crazy that early in the morning. He looked up again for another line and found me still staring at him. He longed for a taxi, a getaway car, anything. I could tell. Eventually his chariot came and took him off into the sunrise.

But ...
I know it is not over. Our paths  and pavements shall cross and I will get to the bottom of it.  It does boggle the mind. Most of the men I want to see are out seeing other people, spaced out or wanting space. And in true damage control mode, the universe sends me a replacement. A stalker stopper, an interim irritation with a penchant for forced interviews with strangers. When next I hear of billions being ploughed into intergalactic research and life on other planets, I am submitting my request.

This one needs to go home now. Beamed up or beaten up, he will have to go.