Closer…

 

I can feel it getting closer.

What began as something that I thought would be easy over a year ago quickly revealed itself to me that it wasn’t when I got down to the work involved. This wasn’t something that I could take lightly – and I was far from prepared to deal with the way my own fears made me stumble along the way… but I kept at it.

It’s all I had.

Now, what I perceive as the hardest part – the part that tested me, made sure I had what it takes as I read, studied and re-wrote every work on every page in every part about 20 times is nearly over, and soon I get to do what this has all been buiding up to – write my book.

It’s amazing what I have learned over the time I have been putting the first part of this project together, and there have often been times where I think that I learned *too* much, as with nearly each new discovery came a new change that need to be made and what I thought might be alright before simply wasn’t anymore. Not for me, at least…

But soon it will be over – I’ll be able to focus on what it has all been building up to – and just as importantly, I’ll be able to quit being consumed by the emotional walls it is necessary to get through every time I need to ask for help for the herbs I need to stay alive, and, at long last, be able to support my SELF and the things I need.

NGG.DreamersLoveLetter

I’m not going to pretend that writing this book is going to be anything even *close* to easy, and the process of it – rough draft, re-write, editing, design, promotion, etc. will be quite a task – as well as the rawness of emotion that I will need to re-live will at times, I’m sure, rip my soul apart… but the exciting thing is that it WILL get done, each & every day a bit more – and it will help someone else.

It *will* help.
And I can feel it getting closer…

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MY turn now.

 

I look around my apartment before I begin with the words again, wondering how the two large bags I lived out of for so long became… this.

This gallery of the past, my past. The gifts, the beautiful notes people have left, the images… only whispers of the things I have done.

So where does the story go from here? Here, now… now that I find it difficult to even imagine being who I was once? Is that lost to me, only a memory of better times? Sometimes I look back and feel that is something close to a curse, for I know I could never be that person again, nor would I want to – I would need to be more than what I was. There is no other option that would make sense to me…

I read what I wrote only nine years ago, during my time with The Dresden Dolls Brigade and how that, by far, was truly the most magickal time in my life… up until living for four months in a tent in The Enchanted Forest in Austin, then New Orleans… gods, so much beauty, so much love, so much  purpose… I pointed myself in a direction and just went along for the way the journey unfolded into so many dreams……

I look around my small apartment, Ruby sleeping by my side as I sit on my bed, and look around at all of the things that I am.
I read what I have written in my journal and see all that I have learned. All I have been blessed with, all the wonder that I swore to myself that I would never lose, all the dreams I would never stop fighting for…

 

It all began with writing. From a crap job that I loathed to working with The Dresden Dolls, and all of the amazing people I helped to realize just how extraordinary they are… including myself.
A reference from Whitney to Amanda, emails to AFP & back and my entire world changed.

Words. Stories. Heart.

So here I am again, with all the lives I have lived. Here I am again, realizing that I have lost nothing of me and though lives have changed and forgotten and lost and fought for it is time FAR past time to find the all of me inside of me again and crucify the thought that I had lost anything and BELIEVE in me once again.

I never stopped believing in you.

 

SO… here I am again. I know you have your doubts, I know why. I’ve said this before, and truly believed in here I am again before… but things have changed and I will not accept me as anyone who has lost anything anymore. Time doesn’t exist, I have not grown up, not grown older, nothing inside of me has died… it has only been lying dormant. Waiting.

 

There is no waiting anymore.

 

Perhaps I was looking for inspiration, perhaps searching for a reason. I had come so close to dying that even this hollow life almost seemed like a triumph. Almost… but it took a lot to rationalize that I was fine, and it took a lot of cheating myself, lying, hobbling on the crutch that is my most recent past. I lived, I found my Birth Mother… but what happens to a person when every single dream that they dared have is reached? Where does one go from there?
Suddenly and in all the beauty of it I was lost, without even a direction to point myself in. A full tank of gas and no bearing, no course. I had found the one single thing I fought so hard to find. I had lived to find my Mother, nothing more… and now nothing was all I had.
I had everything I had always wanted, and trust me when I tell you – there is nothing worse when every single fucking dream, every single action, every moment of thought was based in telling her all that her little boy has done, the lives he has changed, how he has grown… my life was constructed by me, every single thing I did was for one day telling her all that I had done, hoping to see approval, pride, love in her eyes. She didn’t make a mistake. I need to let her know…

And that is where my life ended. There was nothing more to build it on – no passion, no drive, no ambition.

I was left to only my head and the thoughts that swim si scattered in it… who was I? Who am I NOW?

 

I am fucking everything I have been through, everyone I have met. I am all the wonder, all the dreams, all the pain inside, and though I lived my life in hopes of her, I claim my life fucking BACK. Right now, right here, in front of all of you…

I have learned what it means to live for another, and how fucking stupid that is. Don’t get me wrong – I love my Mother, and she is fucking incredible. She kept me dreaming, kept me reaching, and without question gave me the reason I needed to stay alive.

 

It’s MY turn now.
new direction. New dreams. New roads opening up in front of me…

and someone who I had stopped believing existed entering my life, breaking down my walls with her smile and laughter, inspiring me to remember all that I am.
She started reading my words from the beginning – going day by day, month by month, year by… it is because of her that I read who I was then, and when I looked inside – knew that I still am that person, but more.

 

Until again.
Until very soon.

 

to the wind

Of course it changed me. I expected it to. Only now though am I realizing how much… and I found that I was completely wrong in how I changed.

Well, what do ya know. It’s pretty amazing what you hear when you stop and actually listen to and question your mind.

In the time I spent in the hospice then hospital, I thought that I had grown stronger, more passionate for life, more driven to not only survive, but live Throw caution to the wind, live everyday to its fullest without a care or worry and a renewed lust to reach further and live harder than ever before. Burn, Shine, be brilliant and beautiful. Inspire.

Before I realized that I had lost control I never questioned my thoughts. After all, even though my soul was trying its best to break free, my mind, my thoughts always countered with a logical explanation as to why I should back off, settle down, be quiet.

Be safe in this little world where nothing can reach you, nothing can harm you. Buckle up. Hold on tight. Keep your hands inside the car at all times.

I always considered that because I was making what I thought were rational thoughts, that I could believe in them. That they were helping me.
I had forgotten how to question, forgotten how to feel for too long before my brain took over and said “Whooooa. Wait. What if you fail? You’re supposed to be inspirational, lived when so very few expected you to, supposed to give back. You made it this far, thanks to me, so hey, just chill, forget that fire in your heart and soul. Remember, it’s what got you here in the first place, that lust, that passion – but I saved you. Remember that.”

True, it was my mind that made me search beyond Western medicine, and found what could keep me alive – but through that, I lost control of it, believed in it far too much. This is the act of the insane.

The mind is an amazing thing, far above what we can even comprehend. All the supercomputers in the world couldn’t make a robot walk, chew gum, be markedly aware of what a dog is doing and admire the architecture of the buildings it walks by, while still watching out for shit on the sidewalk at the same time. And still, beyond all of that, making each small thing in our body do exactly as it should…

But I believe that we were given a heart, a soul, for a reason far beyond just pumping blood or playing blues. Our mind tends to get a bit arrogant in its power and authority. We forget to question it.

In the nearly two years I spent fighting to live, I needed to give all the power to my mind. Not only to stay alive and trust it would make rational decisions, but to keep as much as I could away from my heart. In one year I watched 13 people die in a building with 14 rooms. They were mostly friends. At the hospital more, but no number. Just empty beds in a sea of rooms. To feel them all would be to give up. My heart had to be separate from my thoughts.

Only now I realize my mistake. Only now I break through it – and it is actually quite simple. Just ask youself – “Is what I am accepting without questioning the truth, or only an illusion?” Really. feel. Fight the arrogant little demon that is in your head.

About a year and a half ago I walked out of the hospital. Maybe two. In that time, I have started and partially shut down many artistic endeavors, not followed through with CultureFlux, been barely surviving on less than $300 a month in the most expensive city, found, spent nine months with, and broke up with a beautiful woman – all because my mind told me I wasn’t worth it.
Oh, my mind certainly knows my buttons!

I am. I am worth it, and everything, and more. I had lived a life of throwing caution to the wind, and my mind did exactly what it is programmed to – keep me alive. Keep me safe.
But it needs to be questioned, it needs to be challenged. Safe is not always best, as if it were, we would never leave our homes, never try anything new, never desire to be more, never risk making mistakes or reaching for our dreams.

Never shine, never burn with passion, never fall in love.

The mind is only a tool. It is nothing if you don’t learn how to use it. It’s really quite simple to achieve – all you need to do is consciously question it, instead of believing that it always knows best. Pause. Breathe. Let Go.
In order to truly be alive, the heart and mind must work together. Make as many mistakes as possible. Jump off a cliff, but into the water. Learn how to breathe fire. Learn how to walk on stilts, and fall. Realize that everything hurts far less than you worry it will. For that matter, don’t EVER worry, but get shit done when it is time. Focus on the NOW.

Fall in love, even if you think it can’t be returned.

I have never questioned my heart…
And It Is Back, in harmony with my mind.

“Some people never go insane. What truly horrible live they must live.” ~ Charles Bukowski

This is something I wrote a bit ago in one of my journals. When it starts speaking TO me, the handwriting changed dramatically. In parts it was scratched through the thick paper in passion.

12/27/98

For so long

I’ve been waiting for someone

like you

for so long
then you came a Thanksgiving night
And I looked into your eyes

for the first time as you stood beside me

there was no bottom

and I was lost.

It was you and I knew it

Talking for hours, looking so deep into your eyes
wanting so much
to know you

to believe in you

to believe that this might be.

Never leaving my mind,

filling my heart, slowly helping me to realize

who I am again

I offered you pieces
of my past
I offered you all
of my present

always looking to the
unknown future, wishing
that the ties that bound you
weren’t there, wishing

that mine
weren’t either.

We dreamed together

we laughed

Tears fell (more mine than yours as I became again)

we wrapped each other up
in each other
So nice inside of you
so warm
so real

so afraid that the tests would come

And now they do.

Now they aren’t fucking around.

HOW MUCH DO YOU WANT THIS

HOW MUCH IS IT WORTH TO YOU

THIS IS WHAT YOU ASKED FOR NOW

PLAYTIME IS OVER TIME TO STEP

TIME IF YOU DARE TO STEP AHEAD

TIME TO SUMMON ALL OF YOUR

STRENGTH.

SO WHAT ARE YOU GONNA DO?

GONNA RUN? THAT’S WHAT WE’RE

USED TO SEEING AS WE WATCHED YOU.

YEAH, SURE, WE KNOW THAT YOU

KNOW YOURSELF, BUT WHY

DO YOU ALWAYS RUN? HAVE YOU BEEN SO AFRAID

OF KNOWING YOU? ARE YOU SO FRIGHTENED

OF YOURSELF?

No. We know it isn’t that. We know

you aren’t afraid of you. We know

that you’re better than that.

We know you are stronger.

We know that you were just so fucking tired of the gifts we gave you

so that you could become

who you are today.

we sent your mother away

we gave you no blood of your own

we gave you a family

who gave you everything as a child

except a friend who you could talk to

when things just weren’t right

and you had so many questions.

We gave you confusion

we gave you years of emptiness

we gave you an excruciating feeling

of loss

And we didn’t ever tell you why or where

it came from

we gave you so many lovers

so that you could try to leave them

with the same feeling

Not knowing that it was always

going to end up with you abandoning them

the way you were as a baby

a helpless fucking baby who

after four short months

the first four months you ever experienced

asking where was that part of you that was so warm where was that part of you that was peace where was the heartbeat and the smell and the voice that always could soothe and where was that part of you that your fucking life started inside of???

And yes.

We gave you that emptiness knowing
We gave you your pain knowing
We gave you your confusion knowing
We gave you your heart knowing
We gave you your head knowing
We gave you your lovers
We gave you your drugs
We let you watch your friends
slowly die in front of you.

Do you remember that smell?

Of course you do. We made sure of it.

We gave it to you.

But we also gave you your joy
We also gave you your laughter
We gave you your heart, and
made sure it could feel love
We gave you your eyes, and
made sure they could shine

But we saw that you forgot, sometimes,
that you could love.

We saw that you forgot, sometimes,
that you could shine.

So we gave you a mind, a heart…
and we gave you a pen
So that you could remember.

We gave you all of the tools
it would take to become
who you are today.

We gave you everything you needed to be here,
now.

So… What are you going to do?

Of course you can run. It’s easy.
We’ve given you that, too.
We’ve given you so many reasons to.

But if you stay

If you try

IF YOU WANT SO MUCH
WHAT YOU ASKED FOR
if you stay

IF YOU TAKE THIS DARE
(you always did as a child, remember?)

IF YOU USE THE STRENGTH
IF YOU USE YOUR LOVE
IF YOU SHINE LIKE WE TAUGHT YOU HOW
IF YOU USE THE RAGE THAT WE HAVE WORKED
SO HARD TO MAKE INSIDE

IF YOU DON’T IGNORE
YOUR PASSION
AND PAIN
AND ANGER
AND HATRED

And you don’t try to crawl
inside again

If you realize that
you have found a way
to keep yourself.

If you keep, this time
what we gave you
what you asked for
then won’t it all finally

make at least some sense?

Think about how much
would have been in vain
Think about throwing away
what could have been
Think about the time
that you didn’t have to let it become

Like you have

Like she has

There is so much more ahead
and it won’t always be easy
and it won’t always be fun
and it won’t always make sense
but the time you will share
as long
as you don’t run from the lessons
as long as you don’t run from the pain
as long as there are the words
to fight the occasional confusion

as you give it time –

it finally may make the pain
just a little less.

We will always offer you, through this life
gifts to help you grow.

There will be pain involved,
and sometimes
more than you think that you can bear
but if you live through them
if you meet them face to face
see them for what they are, welcome them
and learn from them,

then you will also find
the strength you have inside

then you will also find
how deeply you can love

and then you will also find
your Self

and know the pleasure in that

because the pleasure
and the love,
and your heart that continues to beat

are our true gift

to you.