It happens when we get older, and know things that might have been better left unknown. We’ve had far too much time to build walls, now
and I miss the pain and beauty of love.
It happens when we get older, and know things that might have been better left unknown. We’ve had far too much time to build walls, now
and I miss the pain and beauty of love.
I try to step away from the constant gnawing distraction, the thoughts that tell me what I should be doing instead of being here, now, writing – but they are insistent, demanding.
“You need to be working. You’ve saturated the circle of friends, they’ve bought what they wanted, and if you don’t figure out how to let the world know it will all end. You’re broke, hungry, borrowing money from friends just to survive. Your business is falling apart, failing. The fight is going out of you. YOU are failing…”
But I need to be here. This is my medicine, my solace. This is where I come to make sense of the things I need to – to make sense of me. Somewhere long the line I’ve lost who I was and I need to find that person again – that person who shined…
But that’s not correct, is it? I haven’t lost that person anymore than when you bury a body in the ground you’ve lost the body. I’m still here, buried alive, and I need to dig myself out.
I saw someone I’ve known for a while at a party this last Sunday. I felt a lightness, a peace to her that hadn’t been there before, and I commented on it. Her father had died the month before, but he had been sick, hanging on, a shell of who he had been for the six years prior. When he passed on, she was released from his pain as well. For the first time since I’ve known her, I saw her.
I saw the lesson for me in that. There is something that I am letting corrupt who I am, and I need to find it. Bring it out, name it, and let this weight go. Shake off the dirt.
The other day I happened upon things people had said about me in the past – testimonials I had asked for to liven up a resume or project, and some things written simply because they had a desire to express their love to me. In reading them, I cried for the person I had forgotten – and vowed to bring him back:
“I keep a little picture of you I stole from the interwebs in a frame, and recently she asked about it.
I said, “this is the man who taught me how important it is to write, and use beautiful words, even for ugly things. He is one of the most amazing, most special people in the world, so that’s why I gave you his name.”
“kSea walks the walk, talks the talk, and is more amazing in ten
seconds than most people are in a lifetime.”
“kSea is what happens when you decide to live your dreams. His unstoppable passion to live is breathtaking.”
For years I’ve been looking at the shape of my life from before I went into hospice. Even before I created the magazine. (culturefluxmagazine.com) I remember the adventure, living in a van & on couches yet still, nearly every day, going to perform on The Wharf. I remember working with The Dresden Dolls & being a mentor & friend to so many beautiful young artists & performers who were just starting out; living on the road, going wherever I was needed then moving on – and I remember how pure my happiness was, how much joy I always felt.
I’ve made the mistake of thinking that my happiness depended on getting back on the road, that it was the mirage outside of me that created the pureness and the shine inside. We all seem to fool ourselves of that – that we need something besides ourselves, whether it be a great job, a house with a fenced yard, a fancy car – or in my case, the adventure of not knowing what would happen, where I would be from day to day. I longed to somehow recreate those times. Then I would be happy again, then I would be me again…
But happiness does not exist in the illusions outside of us – or at least, it’s not found there. The joy we feel or have felt only can come from inside, and if we depend on the world outside of us for it we are sure to forever be disappointed. All over the world there are people who exist on nearly nothing but the barest of essentials, and the honesty in their smiles, the depth of their joy, is something that could never come from possessions or circumstance.
It is now time to look deep into the mirror, scrape the mud mask off of my face, and see the truth – the truth in me. Turn up the lights, look down at the person on the operating table and see that it is myself – and that writing is my scalpel, my medicine, and my bandages.
I’ve had a taste of how beautiful life can be. That is what kept me alive in hospice, and that is what I will again use to heal my soul.
I’ve had a taste, and I want more.
(And now back to work. 😉 ) By the way, if anyone is looking for some beautiful & unique jewelry, come on by my web-store – and please, spread the word! http://chainstore.kseaflux.com
To live each day as if it has been stolen from death. To wake up every morning knowing that the possibilities are infinite, to release myself from the burden of “how” & the anguish that I encounter every day. To grab Ruby & drive to the Sea, to the mountains, to my mother. To raise my voice and shout at the sky “I am alive, I am wonderful, I am free. I AM.
To feel again the roads underneath me, always looking forward at what I can be, not what I was. The past always takes from the present. To again realize the physicality of the world has its boundaries only if my will is weak, only if I am afraid. To again accomplish the things that the normal person would think impossible.
To go. The wheel lightly held in my hands, the windows down & wind cleansing away the past. To wonder in anticipation and excitement what lies around the next corner, over the next crest. To keep going and discover where I end up. Always forward. For a driver, a wanderer, a dreamer, not having these things takes away part of the soul.
I wake up every morning and say “I wish.” I wish I could take myself and Ruby to the Sea, to the mountains. I wish I could get to events & trade shows to show people the things I can make when my hands meet my heart. I wish I could help people get to where they need to go, visit others who can’t go anywhere. I wish I could visit my Birth Mother, and finally get to know the woman who gave me this life. I wish I could make hers better. I wish I could get in my car and just go, leaving the unforgiving brutality of the sidewalks behind me and again follow the wind. Again follow my dreams.
Sometimes life throws you something that you didn’t expect & are better for it. This was one of those nights.
Rose was kind. Kind and wonderful enough to actually PM me and offer to put me on the list, if I wanted. With all the people I know, I hardly know her – but she is the sigle one who approached me without me first asking. I would do anything I could for her because of that. It’s stupid how easily I’m devoted & loyal. I don’t think that’s a fault – at least, not for anyone but me. (Though I kind of think by saying that, I’m now fucked… We’ll see.)
Aaaanyway, I walked from my apartment to Baxtalo Drom (The Lucky Road) – the show she produces and has for quite a while – and in the rare times when I was able to go always had a wonderful time.
Of course, in those times I was lit on morphine, so the times I had, full crowd, amazing performances, all the bells & whistles to make a great evening… were somewhat dulled.
Morphine sucks. (My public service announcement.) (Your welcome.)
Tonight however, my noggin was ALL screwy – sober as hell on the way there, I could barely walk straight. Muscles weren’t working right, mind was jittering like a scratched record – I was a mess. But hell, I looked better that I was and can almost always pull off a little bit of conversation. I made due. No one suspected a damn thing. I’m a pro at this – false smiles were the first thing I learned…
It didn’t take long tonight before the smiles on my face were real, weren’t something contrived. This is what I wrote in my notebook:
“In times like this, I see the fun others are having. Intimate, shared, free.
Regardless of how I’m feeling in mind or body – most times – I do my best to let it contamine me. I begin to honor my smile, I begin to dance. I forget everything but NOW, and there is nothing better than this.”
So yeah, it ended up being a good night. I smiled, danced a bit – and then it was time for me to leave. So I did. Duh. Just felt like it. No good-byes. NEVER good bye..
Until again, if I must say something…
Realizing I had only eaten a bowl of cereal today, and thinking that maybe I should eat something more so the sides of my stomach don;t grind against each other, I decided to do the worst thing imaginable, short of eating a puppy.
Burger King. Bacon Double Cheeseburger. I hang my head as I write that. Good thing I can *almost* touch type. I had to close my eyes.
I ate half, hating myself with every bite – but then, I found at least a bit of redemption. As I walked up 9th street, half a burger in hand, I crossed Market and came upon the Wells Fargo Homeless Troupe. Always there at night, most just kids like I was – when I was.
I offered the still warm 1/2 burger to them, and after a few who said thanks bit no I found one who was willing to eat this crap. Hunger doesn’t let you choose. I felt good & wrong at the same time. It was confusing.
Further up the street I met my 2nd stage of homeless, and though on most every day I walk through them & their really bizarre things for sale, I heard a tune being played on someone’s radio. Didni’t know it, but saw three people dancing.
So I decided to dance with them, and did. WE did.
I find it so beautiful. Regardless of who you are or where you sit or what your situation is…
IF you can let that go, if you can dance with *anyone* – that’s all that matters. That’s all that matters because that will put a smile on your face and light up your fucking heart, and
and welcome back to human. Welcome back to love.
And then I walked another block, turned the corner and was shortly home to Ruby. She was all wiggly ass to see me again. I LOVE that!
I fucking love this life sometimes. Most times.
When I think about how many times I could have taken or lost it, not to experience nights like this…
I love it all times.
And in that, there is magic.
Monday. 6:43am, my eyes slowly open & let the small amount of light in my apartment in. Stretch, take a mental note making sure my legs are still there, and if they are how adventurous they may feel after having the whole night off.
They’re there, seem okay but still swollen, we’ll check out the standing thing in a minute – and then walking. The first 10 or 20 steps are always the hardest as the stiffness & pain reluctantly subsides, but this morning there is some extra motivation:
With immense gratitude to Thad & Geri, there is a bag of deep, dark, rich PEET’S COFFEE just about 20 steps away (normally around 5, but these mornings the first steps are more along the lines of heel to toe shuffles, a la old man get off my lawn & where’s my gaddamn Jello).
I put the water on, coffee in the press, bring out my favorite over-sized ceramic mug that has stuck with me & somehow survived our travels & turmoil over roughly the past 17 years.
If I were a coffee mug, I would be this one.
Coffee ready, the aroma already making me smile in anticipation, I take the first sip of *real* coffee I’ve had in over a month.
Ahhhhh….. Sweet elixir of life.
It’s a busy day ahead. Two Dr. appointments, more work on the apartment, the intention to do ALL THE LAUNDRY IN THE WORLD.
With coffee & smokeytreat I prepare for a much needed body cleansing – a bath to loosen & remove dead flesh on legs & feet (I’m molting) and then shower to strip the sgragglyhair on my face that will never, ever let me be a hipster, and wash the hell out of my body – so very long overdue.
First however, I need to remove the dressing. No problem – thankfully I’ve been doing my own wound care for years, when necessary.
There’s a hole in my foot still, and as I pull off the main bandage I see the end of the packing fuse. I didn’t dress it last time, so curious as to how deep the hole is – how much is in there.
I grab the end with the tweezers, and gently start pulling. And pulling. and pulling.
Whoa, cool! I have a friggin’ *stash* in my foot!
….. I need to stop for a while here. I’ve been on my legs all day, and they’re not really digging it too much – but they need the work as well.
Oh, yeah – and when I got back from the Dr., I walked into the foyer of my building and decided something – if I’m going to move forward in the healing, strengthen my atrophied muscles – I need to do make it happen… so with the elevator beckoning, the sirens singing their song for the easy way up, I was able to break free from their seduction and move towards a higher purpose – the STAIRS.
Including the entrance, 49 of ’em, with the bare minimum of help from the hand rail.
I didn’t need to do this, but I did – because I fucking rock, and I made those stairs my bitches!
(Even though it was very slowly, they’re still mah bitches, yo.)
Now I REALLY need to shut the hell up & get my legs on a horizontal plane.
Love love love the ALLS of you, and thank you for all the ways you have been helping, the boosts of encouragement, and just all around… *everything*!
Please, also, rememner to keep getting the word out there for the GoFundMe thing – from special socks to medical equipment to gadgets to help me come back physically, herbs & potions and…
and now that I think about it, this is the first time *ever* sinceI got out of the hospice four years ago that I haven’t had the ever-present but faint cloud of stress hanging over me because I could *never* get what I needed to really make a difference – not on my total of $400/mo for bills, herbs, & food.
You are taking that stress away, allowing me to finally focus completely on getting better, and focus on the *most* important goal – the writing & completion of my book, and changing the world through helping people.
You are making an amazing difference in my life., An immense one.
A permanent one.
Now pardon me while I *finally* put my damned legs up and blubber a little bit.
I just secured the amazing Chuck Revell’s photography as some of the awesome multi-tier rewards for the Early-Bird & official Kickstarter campaigns for #MyBook!
Out of the kindness of his heart & to support this project, he will be donating some beautiful fine-art images, and *EVEN* for a few *very* fortunate contributors, a personal photo-shoot!
Check out what his extraordinary eye catches through the lens at RevellRay Photography:
Of course there will be many more fantastic rewards for those who support the creation and publishing of my book, but I really wanted to be able to offer some extra rewards that are less common in a publishing campaign, and supporters should have as much beauty to choose from as they deserve.
The “official” Kickstarter campaign is involving tons of work and lots of waiting for others (mostly for the video).
Needless to say, I (and others who have been on my ass to write the book since I first spoke of it) am far too excited about getting the thrilling but arduous process of #MyStory in gear to wait for everyone else, so I’m creating something very special.
In order to get this book rolling ASAP, there will be an Early Bird Campaign launched very soon (this Mon. or Tues.)
It will be independent of the Kickstarter, but hold true to and even above the same promise and pledge to its supporters.
The really cool thing about it is that it will offer *very* special, limited edition, and one-of-a-kind rewards that will NOT be available on the official Kickstarter campaign, as a special show of appreciation from me to you! One they’re gone however – they’re gone, never to be seen or offered again.
And please – feel free to share this *everywhere*. I’ve got a HUGE & beautiful project in front of me, and it will need as much support as possible.
Love love love,
The emotional scope of writing this story is becoming frighteningly clear. Every day I go further into the notes, into me, and bring back in unsettling clarity the disquieting details of nearly each moment written about I recall how much more there was going on inside of me than merely the words written in my blog posts.
I was profoundly, overwhelmingly terrified, but couldn’t let anyone know.
In my posts, I only skimmed over what was actually happening in my head and heart, making it palatable to the reader, trying to be as cheerful and upbeat as possible. I couldn’t afford people reading what I wrote and worrying, posting replies that were alarmed or anxious. I couldn’t have the slightest bit of uncertainty, worry or unintentional doubt to cast a shadow over the flickering light inside my heart that I was struggling so hard to keep lit.
Holding onto that light, that small glimmer of belief that I could live through this was the greatest challenge I had ever faced.
Through all the pain, through feeling and watching my body fall apart and rot in front of my eyes every day, the putrid stench of my own flesh decaying, the skin on my legs swollen & splitting, belly grotesquely distended with the waste my organs could no longer process… it seemed futile to even hope in the smallest chance that I would live – but it couldn’t be over, not yet. I still needed to find her. To find my mother. To thank her…
The first six months were the most fragile.
These were the most uncertain. From the moment I woke nearly every morning to the time I was able to sleep, there was a constant battle going on inside of me to not only believe that I could live, but questioning whether I wanted to. It would have been so much easier to give up, let nature take its course, and quietly fade from this life. I mean hells – I had stashed away enough morphine to easily dream myself dead if the pain became too much or the process too slow to endure anymore.
Certainly, no one could have blamed me. I was tired, drained, shattered, and barely holding onto life most days anyway. No one would have asked why I was finally letting death take me… most of them expected it.
Beyond the smiles that the doctors and nurses had learned to wear, behind the caring and upbeat tone in their voices that they kindly tried so hard for, I knew that they were only waiting, making me as comfortable as they could until, like most everyone else at the hospice, I just gave up and let myself die…
I was broken… but I was not yet destroyed.
I can be a tenacious bastard. A really stubborn pain in the ass, when I need to be – and I figured that if there ever was a time that I needed to be, this sure as hell was it! I decided not to give them the satisfaction of being right –after all, it was a pretty high-stakes game, at least on my side, and so… I chose to look at it like that. Like this life ultimately is. Nothing more than an exquisite game, a game that is played, lost or won depending solely on however you choose to play it…
Hells, I was dying anyway, what’s there to lose? Let’s PLAY!
The Western doctors had done all they knew how to do, so now it was my turn. I took risks. Stopped taking their ineffective drugs and started reading & doing my own research into all kinds of alternative healing, from the completely wacky (and there’s some really bizarre ideas out there) to the more conventional. I mean hells – at that point, what’s the worst that could happen?
I remembered lessons from some of the more difficult times I had been through in the past. Perhaps the most significant lesson was that I had come to know – not just “believe”, but KNOW – that regardless of how far you fall, there is always a way back up. You are never given any challenge that you don’t have the strength and resilience to not only get through, but eventually come out on top of. Regardless of how high the odds seem to be stacked against you, you can beat them. You always have the strength inside of you to kick some ass.
I just needed a reason to keep fighting, and a damned good one. Something big, something I could believe in with all of my heart.
Getting the hell out of there & finally finding my Birth Mother – now that was a pretty damn good reason to work with as the main goal to live, but there were others that could have been just as powerful if I decided that they were – the stories I have to tell, the people I might be able to help, the love left inside of me to give… so many things I had learned that still needed to be shared with others.. I had to live.
I made an oath to myself & others.
Hell – some of the people who read my blog during that time all but demanded that, If I did live, I would write a book about all I learned. It could likely even help people. Hundreds of people. Thousands.
A MEEEELION PEOPLE! Bwaaahahahaaaaa!!!
The cool thing is that the lessons I learned easily transcend the hospital or the reason I was in it, and if I wrote a book it could connect with nearly everyone.
So I am writing a book. The time has come. My story is being told.
It will not be an easy story to voice; I’m not looking forward to going back there to say what needs to be said – but I didn’t go through the hell I did to selfishly keep this story locked inside.
It can help people, & it needs to be told.
I have not only survived, but I am living. I am thriving, and continuing to chase down my dreams.
By the way – I have found my Birth Mother, and she’s awesome. We’re getting to know each other, and I’ve even been able to see her a few times.
I also, just a month ago at the end of September, found and contacted my Birth Father who had no idea I even existed – and he’s excited to get to know me.
And I’m writing an awesome book. About an absolutely incredible life.
About The Book
(And A Super-Limited Pre Launch Supporter Reward Package!)
It’s an unapologetic, pull-no-punches, authentic, inspiring and even sometimes laugh-out-loud story about transformation, personal growth, trusting in yourself, doing what you believe is right and fighting like hell to live the amazing life you deserve…
Though the specific journey written about in this story is solely mine, there is something in it for absolutely everyone who has ever faced – or ever will face a difficult challenge.
In order to have it published and promoted, in order for it to get out there and be able to help people, I will need your help. It simply will not be able to exist without you.
I am anxious and friggin’ THRILLED to finally get this going, so while I prepare the Kickstarter Campaign which won’t be ready for about a month, I am offering Limited Edition Rewards for a short time during the one & only:
KICK-ASS EARLY BIRD PRE-STARTER REWARD SPECIAL!
The details are coming later today, so keep watch!
This Pre-Launch special will help me fund some key things that will help get the book finished and published as soon as possible, but because of the extra special rewards that ONLY the pre-launch supporters of the book will receive, IT WILL BE LIMITED