On Addiction

I originally wrote this in April 2015. I’ve revised it in light of Chris Cornell’s suicide. Vale.

ACT 1: When I was 17, I got drunk for the first time along Melbourne’s Yarra River. It’s where all students went at the end of the year to forget their high-school woes and to cut loose.

Someone threw up on a cop car (LEGEND!) and I pashed a lot of boys.

The thing is, a lot of us Catholic school girls, especially us wogs, grew up in tortuous communities where EVERY SINGLE step was measured by our parents, neighbours, people we met at a wedding one time, and people who knew our mother and father but we had not seen since we were ten. And either despite this, or in spite of this, we Rebelled with a capital R. I knew lots of Aussie girls who rebelled against being a teenager, but us wog kids, well we rebelled against so much more.

What is incredibly sad is that, at 48, I’m still rebelling. Or perhaps just reeling. What was Chris Cornell reeling from when he chose to hang himself instead of heading back on stage, then back to his family? What made him so sad that he didn’t see an alternative?

Guilt and Fear do not stop just because you get older. Sadness becomes deeper, more tonal, filled with regret, missed opportunities, death.

ACT 2: Being high is better than, well, not being high.

Some people hold onto their youth by listening to the same music or wearing the same clothes or even holding onto the same hairstyle as that time when they were most happy in their lives. Some of us hold onto the greatest moments, and we mythologise them.

I mythologise drinking, getting high, acting out.

Being high makes me think I’m a better writer, a victim, funny, a great friend and wife, more interesting, just more…

And because of this…

Sometimes it feels like I have no past (or just no weekend).

ACT 3: We didn’t have digital cameras in the 80s and I had no money while I was at uni, so that means I have no photographic proof of my memories, my most important memories that explain who I am, whether good or bad.

I don’t have proof of:
– My first acid trip where I saw a cicada that was the MOST GIANT FLY I’d ever seen.
– The time Maree and I made a 4-Season diorama in a shoe box (based on the children’s book, The trip).
– The time, in 1987, when a bunch of us chucked a bunch of dishwashing liquid in the Deaking Uni moat.
– The hitch-hiking posts at Deakin
– The house on Packington Street in Geelong with walls covered in graffiti.
– My “tomato” plants in Geelong.
– Anorexia
– Bulimia
– Passing out in public phone booths from not eating.
– Sit ins against HECS in 1986-88
(pause)
– My purple plastic and flannel-lined raincoat that I picked up in that place on 13th Street near Uni in Eugene.
– The glittery blue bike I bought for a gram of weed in Eugene.
– The first time I met Jeff (although I have a t-shirt from the place where we met)…/

I also don’t see anyone from that time (late 80s). I have no photographic evidence, and a very romantic memory.

My memories of that time are hilarious, though, and it feels like I’m holding on REALLY TIGHT  to a time that wasn’t real, a time that was so fleeting, a time that has no proof. No photos. No friends that still exist (despite Facebook).

So all I remember was a cool chick who lounged and sang and listened to psychedelic music and loved and wrote.
It’s the myth of addiction. That those times were better.
Even now, one month sober, I remember fun nights, solo, drunk, but better. Sobriety isn’t anything. Sobriety forces you to face the things you drank to mask.
So addiction looks best when its mythologised. But the stuff, the things you drank to shove down, it busts its way through the floorboards and says “here I am, now, entertain me.” Depression is bleak. My addictions allowed me to forget the bleakness.
Maybe Chris Cornell was flooded with his truth the other night. Maybe it was too hard to shove it down anymore. Maybe the bleakness he’d cloaked in black returned, as it always does, even after decades of creative success and fandom, a cute family, all the trappings.
I believe that long-term depression, whether caused by addiction or the result of addiction, is permanent, hardwired, and difficult to treat.
Like deep sadness. I see deep sadness when I watch Chris Cornell’s last minutes on stage in Detroit the other night. Despite the trappings, deep sadness is a fucker to manage. Deep sadness seeps into the walls and curtain and can’t be washed out.
So, Chris Cornell is safe now, no longer sad or overwhelmed by fear and addiction. I wish him sweet passage. And to the rest of us, tell someone, don’t be ashamed of depression or addiction. Keep going. I’m sure it gets better.

Cooking for Two on Mothers Day (An Ode)

On Mothers Day, I’m reminded of my childlessness, that I’ve never carried any number of children, that I bled for 8 days every 21 days for almost 30 years for no reason other than my body said so. But then I look to my silly family of six–husband (one so far), dogs (two), and cats (two), and remind myself of the wonder of the Mirena IUD (No. More. Blood.) and smile.

In all fairness though, I might not have any kids, but spending time away from home with my parents is like being around  tween siblings without internet connectivity.

It’s Mother’s Day weekend and we’re at the weekender in Hepburn Springs, our go-to for a bit of solitude. It’s nice here, super low-key save for the cars heading into town (Daylesford) for brunch and a spa treatment, and there’s the odd flock of cockatoos screaming at the heavens. It’s cold enough at this time of the year where we can light a fire and don’t feel guilty about skipping a morning walk. Dad fiddles around with the trees, hacking into bushes and pulling weeds. Today he harvests a bag of olives from the front yard. Jeff and I read on our phones, give the cats our feet to tear up and largely ignore the barking dogs, but make sure to top up the fire. The house is sparse–it’s a weekender, after all–and there’s no cleaning to do, no laundry, no anything. We don’t even have music on because it’s nice to just read and chill after a week of work and to-do lists.

Thing is, mum doesn’t use an iPad, or a smart phone, she doesn’t read anymore and, while she enjoys a soak in the bath, she prefers a shower for its efficiency.

My mother likes to Get. Things. Done. And relaxing quietly is not one of those Things.

Instead, she talks to the animals. My mother doesn’t do silence. So she insists on conversation with the dogs, and when they don’t answer she looks to me and waits for me to answer on their behalf. She remarks about how clean and the tidy the house is, about what she’ll make for dinner, about how she’s happy to make scrambled eggs for mother’s day brekkie instead of going to Cliffys in Daylesford (but I’ve got my eye on a hash brown with aged cheddar). She laughs at the kitten and marvels at her intelligence (trust me, she’s just an average moggy), and tries to catch other, feral, cat as she stalks down the stairs on her way to the litter box. It won’t happen. That cat is not the cuddly kind. She says the dogs are So Elegant in their hoodies (They’ve just had a shave and are freezing. Plus I like to dress them up. Don’t judge!). They do look pretty cute.

My mother stands, a lot, because sitting is frivolous, although she says that it’s to keep warm. Sitting makes her cold. Plus she’s itchy (and needs to go to the doctor to see why she’s so itchy all the time). I go on reading, and when I’ve finished with my cup of tea she swipes it from my fingers before I’ve laid it on the coffee table and takes it into the sink to wash it. She even dries it and puts it away.

There’s no ironing to be done. No grout to clean. No spare room to dust. Dad doesn’t need a clean outfit to wear to the coffee shop or his social club because there isn’t one in Hepburn Springs. Mum’s routine is out of whack, poor love. So she washes every dish as it’s dirtied, and she laughs at the cats and dogs.

I think it must be hard to be the mother of an only child who didn’t have kids.

Mum was the last of her family, and all of her siblings had either died or were married by the time she was born. She lived with a widowed mother, and didn’t learn anything about normal mothering, just that desperation with which my grandmother held onto her because she was her last baby, the one she still had in her womb when her husband died in a bomb blast in the war. My mother was gold to her mother. The last. The only. The most cherished. So she never learned what it was like to be a normal kid.

So when she left her village, in among the linen and cloth nappies, my mother brought regret and guilt with her on the month-long boat ride to Australia, and she’s gripped them both with the strength of fighter. She doesn’t deny it either. She blames her mother’s death on her sudden departure, soon after marriage and childbirth. She regrets leaving. Reckons it’s all her fault.

I would never wish my mother’s mothering on a child. Maybe that’s why I never had kids (although I blame my eggs, actually). There’s far too much anger and sorrow in my mother’s mothering. Oh, and resentment, regret, and a lack of understanding of anything remotely related to kids in Australia.

It’s a little hard for us both on Mother’s Day, I think. Mostly mum, though. She didn’t get that chance to get better at motherhood the second or third time around, and she won’t get the chance to throw all the rules away with grand kids. She wants to indulge someone, many someones (I think), in a way she never could when she was scrimping and saving to pay of the mortgage before she turned 40. Back then she had no money or time to squander on reading anything longer than pulp fiction or an old Italian fashion magazine. She would sometimes spend her bus ride to work re-read the five books she’d come over to Australia with. Mostly, she looked at the regular faces who waited at the bus stop and made up stories about them.

I went to work at the clothing factory with mum when I was 14. I spent the summer in the basement of that factory on Flinders Lane, and 2 hours a day watching the regulars at the bus stops on our way to and from the city and she would tell me who’d missed the bus and who hadn’t changed their shoes or shirt.

Back then, at home, she was like a single mother to an only child, with dad working 80 hour weeks at the factory or with mates at the pub or cafe. There was no time for frivolity, just resentment and rage and the terror that she wouldn’t manage to get everything done before Sunday night.

But with old age comes a little softening, the recognition (perhaps) that there is another way (maybe). She overfeeds the dogs and dances with them. She takes them for walks and indulges them by letting them sleep on the couch in front of the heater. She would make lunch and dinner for us every day if I wanted. She would call and talk for hours, but I’m just too busy to listen. I just want serenity now, because I got so much rage for so long, so I seek the quiet.

My mother tells me how lucky I am to have avoided having kids (geez, thanks mum). She says they’re too much worry. She reminds me of all the travel I’ve done, of all the travel I’ll do, that I’ll never have to cry over a child. She would have been a great nonna, my mum, because she makes her own pasta, still makes Sicilian donuts for St Martins Day, she sings to dusty old Italian tunes, and is an expert seamstress. She would have taught her grand kids how to embroider as though ants with angel wings had sewn the stitches. She didn’t have time to teach me, what with all the preparation for Mondays, but she’s ready to share her gifts now.

I wish I had time for her, but I’m too busy, what with all the preparation for Mondays. I’m too busy seeking silence. I don’t regret not having kids, not at 48, but I do wish I’d given my mother someone, plenty of someones, to share herself with, so she had someone to talk to other than the dogs.

 

I went a-hunting

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I want to become a minimalist (or: Why does my stuff mean so much to me?)

Recently, I watched Minimalism: A Documentary about the Important Things.(I think you can buy it on itunes or something, but in true minimalist style, I downloaded a torrent version then passed it on).

And it’s kinda rocked my world. On one hand, anyway.

On the other hand, it’s left me wondering why I have so much shit? Why am I keeping it all? Who’s going to get it (or even want it) when I’m gone?

Between us, Jeff have so many collections, most of which are in storage boxes collecting (literal) dust in the garage.

  • Rollerskates that are to big/small/used
  • Rollerskate wheels that we used when we started skating and wouldn’t bother using anymore
  • Rollerskate tools that we don’t need
  • Fabric
  • Rolling Stone Magazine collection (especially with Pearl Jam and Nirvana)
  • Saws, nails, tools I wouldn’t know what to do with
  • Suitcases filled with, actually I have no idea what they’re filled with – their in the roof area of the garage and we don’t go near them
  • Costumes and dress up boxes
  • Jeff’s CDs
  • Containers full of tech bits – cords, cables, computer parts
  • A video machine we don’t use because it’s guts are ripped out (but Jeff will fix it one day)
  • A pool table we haven’t used in 3-4 years
  • A pinball machine I’ve wanted since I was a kid but I never play it (but I own it!!!)
  • Old paint cans
  • Paint tools
  • Spare tiles (just in case we ever break one in the house)
  • Lots of spare things that are going to our spare, I mean, our holiday house
  • Clothing that doesn’t fit but that is super awesome and was super expensive
  • Bikes, including spare bikes, that we don’t ride.
  • Wool and knitting needles
  • Furniture
  • Record Collection
  • Obsolete stereo parts that no longer work
  • Computers the size of a space station
  • String
  • Comic and card collections
  • More nails
  • Old manuscripts for books that have been printed and published
  • Copies of newspapers and magazines with my articles
  • A box of flyers and passes for raves that we’ve been to or have been involved with
  • Boxes and boxes of photos – the old printed kind.
  • Shoes. Seriously. Shoes. (But what if a friend needs a pair of super high heeled shoes? What if she can’t rely on me?)

We’re not hoarders, but here’s our garage (a 4 car garage that has not seen a car since we moved in here 8 years ago).

You get the (very blurry) picture(s). Right?

All this stuff is so heavy, you know? It feels heavy but I don’t know why. I mean, it’s in the garage, or in boxes, or a cupboard. As long as I don’t look at it, what’s the problem? How does it affect me from day to day?

I don’t know. That’s why I’m writing about it. Writing helps me process it all.

So why do I hold onto this stuff?

It’s not that I hate owning things or that I find the idea of ownership to be too middle-class or whatever. For example, Jeff and I love art, and we surround ourselves with it. I have no problem with that, and our love of art has spawned a love of art in Holly, our “adopted” adult daughter. So that can’t be bad. I feel as though we’ve passed on something positive to her, and that’s super nice.

So do we keep stuff because of ego? You know, I’ve got all this stuff, how cool am I? (Hey check out Jo and Jeff; they have the coolest XYZABC).

Maybe. But I’m not sure (lemme check that one with my therapist).

What if I hold onto everything because I’m holding onto my past? I think we’re on a winner with this idea.

Is it that the only way I’m going to live on is through the things I own? Are my possessions the only way of recounting my history when I’m gone?

You see, as we get older, most of us have kids, so we have an audience for our stories, and someone to leave our stuff to. We tell them about what we wore, we show them the VIP passes from gigs, we give them gold earrings that once belonged to our great, great, great grandmother (yes, seriously). We pass on a book, and show them photos of who we were in our 20s, 30s, 40s, when we looked so AMAZING. And they lament that we got rid of the raver pants and (some of) our vinyl collection.

If I’m going to be honest, this is what it’s about.

Other than Jeff, I don’t have anyone to leave my crap to when I’m gone. No kids. No close relatives who I would burden with the old magazines and unloved craft accessories. Holly won’t really want my magazine collection and spare wool. Would she?

I always loved my mother’s button tin. I’ve even raided it in recent times to replace crappy buttons on good clothing. Just yesterday, mum gave me her great great great grandmother’s earrings, as well as my baby earrings. There was something truly beautiful in them, in knowing who they belonged to (even if neither of us had ever met my great great great grandmother). But the knowledge  that I have a history that spans generations has value, even if it will end with me.

So what of the collections in the garage? They’re not gold, or diamonds, or even (Jeff’s mum’s) awesome Avon collection.

A couple of weeks ago, I sent more than half my linen closet, my clothes and shoes to the op shop or the bin. It was a superb feeling. I have no regrets. Anything that didn’t make me feel great went off.

But I fear regret (is that double regret?). What if I get rid of something and regret it later? Even if I sold it and made money, I might want it, or show it to someone.

I got rid of a TONNE of books at a garage sale around eight years ago when we moved into this house – many of them sold, many went to some organisation who gives books to people who can’t afford them (this was pre-Kindle, when fiction books in Australia were $26.95 apiece). I’ll admit that it took me a long time to get over it. Jeff did the same when he left the States. He left a lot behind when he moved over here in 1994. Now that his mum and step-dad have passed and he probably won’t see a lot of his stuff ever again, I wonder how he feels about that? Does he lament a lost past (his army uniforms?).

So what am I supposed to do with SO MUCH STUFF that keeps me feeling trapped?

Would having an organised, minimalist garage matter? Would getting rid of the unplayed piano that houses art books, sculptures and other memorabilia change my life? Does owning all this stuff actually fuck with my life?

I know there’s something super rewarding about getting rid of things. I know because I’ve done it SO MANY TIMES. But why do I feel this grand need to do it, once or twice a year? I have a friend whose home is filled with memorabilia: crucifixes, art, ceramics that she’s made and that she’s collected, etc – and I LOVE her home. There’s something comforting in the clutter and chaos.

What if, one day, someone finds the same comfort in my clutter and chaos?

What if, one day when I’m gone, someone finds a way of getting to know me through my stuff. Do I really need minimalism? Or am I looking for a way to hone what I have so that it has meaning? Maybe the start of my “minimalism” is to just get rid of shit that means nothing to me – the nails, the saw, the string, paint cans – all of those “just in case” items, and really focus on the things that do – the comforter that Jeff’s nanna made for him.

Maybe it’s about really loving the things that are important, and hoping someone will care for them, even for a moment, one day.

It’s time to pull Jeff’s nanna’s comforter out of the linen closet and hang it on a wall (it’s too small to use), and my great great great grandmother’s and my baby earrings are going to hang gratefully from the extra holes in my ears (yay to being a rebel!).

But there’s are a lot of empty possessions in the garage. Maybe those things can go. Maybe we can curate the rest as if they were for a gallery.

We all want to make a difference. Even the craziest of serial killers are looking to make a difference. Otherwise, we wonder, what are we here for?

Jeff and I will live on in the minds of some. But we’ll be largely forgotten, because we had no kids. I feel sad about that. But there’s very little I can do about it. So I’d better live a great life while I can.

So I wonder, when I’m dead will Holly care more that I left her a collection of Rolling Stone Mags, or that I baked a really cool red velvet oreo cookie dough cake?

I wonder.

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Letter to a friend

I’ve been abandoned, and I have abandoned. Here’s the list:

Bernadette Luvara – I left town with my parents when I was 10. We didn’t have Facebook. Sorry.
Nicolina Grimaldi – I felt superior. I didn’t respect you. Sorry.
Nancy Camarda – I left for uni. I felt like a loser. Like you wouldn’t get me. Sorry.
Maree Lavecchia – We were everything. We loved. I left. You cursed me. Sorry.
Anna Lazarevic – You had a kid. You didn’t get me. I felt judged. Sorry.
Connie Athanasiadis – You had a kid. I didn’t get you. You resented me. Sorry.
Rachael Kacen – You had a kid. I hated it. Sorry.
Samone Bos – I don’t understand. I’m jealous. Sorry.

We abandon.

Read a free ebook this week!

Would you like to some Australian/Italian coming-of-age fiction set in Victoria in the 1970s? My novel, “Floating Upstream”, has been enrolled in the 2017 Smashwords “Read an Ebook” promotion, which means it’s FREE for a few days, as is my book of poems and short stories, “Girls”. My writing focuses on girls and women who are less than perfect, and simply trying to work shit out in a culture that doesn’t want them to grow and move on.

You can find both ebooks here. Simply use the code SFREE and download for free!

I’d love to hear your feedback. I’m on Goodreads here.

Enjoy!

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Le Bucket Liste

So I read about The 100 List recently. Sounds like a bucket list kind of thing but it’s a little different. It’s not a list of things you hope to do before you die. It’s a list of 100 things you will do while you’re alive.

Same Same but Different?

So this is a keynote speech from the guy who decided to do this, Seb Terry.

I’m working on my list right now, with some help from the interwebs.

  1. Abseil Down a Waterfall
  2. Attend a Murder Mystery Dinner
  3. Attend a Music Festival
  4. Attend a Unique Small-Town Festival
  5. Attend a Vipashna Retreat
  6. Be a Bridesmaid
  7. Be a Game Show Contestant
  8. Be a Member of a TV Studio Audience
  9. Be a Self-Made Millionaire
  10. Be on a Radio Show
  11. Be on a TV Show
  12. Be the the New York Times Bestsellers List
  13. Bid at an Auction
  14. Bird Nest Soup
  15. Blow Glass
  16. Bone Marrow
  17. Cactus
  18. Catch, Cook & Eat a Fish
  19. Century Egg
  20. Climb an Indoor Rock Wall
  21. Complete a big embroidery to hang on the wall
  22. Create an embroidered wall hanging
  23. Dance at a Rave
  24. Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) | Mexico
  25. Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) | Mexico
  26. Do a Belly Dance
  27. Do a Charity Walk
  28. Do the Hollywood Walk of Fame | California
  29. Do the Hula
  30. Donate Books
  31. Donate Clothing
  32. Drink Absinthe
  33. Drink Juice from a Fresh Coconut
  34. EAT
  35. Eat a Meal Cooked by a Celebrity Chef
  36. Eat a Raw Diet for a Day
  37. Eat an Insect
  38. Eat at a Food Truck
  39. Eat at a Michelin 3-star Restaurant
  40. Eat Fondu
  41. Eat Fondue
  42. Eat in a Pitch Black Restaurant
  43. Enter Something in a Food Competition
  44. Escargot
  45. Explore a Rain Forest
  46. Explore the Acropolis | Greece
  47. Explore the Ancient Ruins of Petra | Jordan
  48. Explore the Galapagos Islands | Ecuador
  49. Explore the Van Gogh Museum | Netherlands
  50. Extract Honey from a Bee Hive
  51. FESTIVALS & EVENTS
  52. FESTIVALS & EVENTS
  53. Float in the Dead Sea | Jordan/Israel
  54. Flowers
  55. Fly First Class on Emirates
  56. Fly in a Helicopter
  57. Fly on a Trapeze
  58. Foster animals
  59. French Quarter | New Orleans
  60. Get a Caricature Drawing by a Street Artist
  61. Get a College Degree
  62. Get a Fish Pedicure
  63. Get a great book publishing deal
  64. Get a Henna Tattoo | India
  65. Get a Tattoo
  66. Get a Tattoo
  67. Get Acupuncture
  68. Get Hypnotized
  69. Get my PADI license and go diving
  70. Give a Ted Talk
  71. Go caving
  72. Go on a Cruise
  73. Go on a Cruise
  74. Go to a Drive-In Movie
  75. Go to a Health Spa
  76. Go to a Tattoo Festival
  77. Go to the Movies by Myself
  78. Go whitewater rafting
  79. Grand Central Station | New York
  80. Have 15 Minutes of Fame
  81. Have a Facial
  82. Have a Housecleaner
  83. Have my brows threaded
  84. Helicopter into the Grand Canyon | Arizona
  85. Hike the Inca Trail | Peru
  86. Hike Through the Crooked Forest | Poland
  87. Host a dinner party with strangers
  88. Hug a panda
  89. Hunt for Wild Mushrooms
  90. Jelly Fish
  91. Join a Flash Mob
  92. Kimchi
  93. Kite Surf
  94. Learn about gypsy healing
  95. Learn French
  96. Learn Roller Derby
  97. Learn Spanish
  98. Learn the Alphabet in Sign Language
  99. Learn the German Wheel
  100. Learn the Hula | Hawaii
  101. Learn to play guitar to a level of satisfaction
  102. Learn to play piano to a level of satisfaction
  103. Learn to surf
  104. Learn to Tango with Jeff
  105. Learn ukulele
  106. Leave My Mark in Graffiti
  107. Lose weight and keep it off once and for all
  108. Make a Wish in the Trevi Fountain | Italy
  109. Make Mosaic Art
  110. Make pottery/ceramics
  111. Make Soap
  112. Marvel at Plitvice Lakes | Croatia
  113. Meet Dr Phil
  114. Octopus
  115. Own a Successful Business
  116. Own an Original Piece of Artwork
  117. Own Investment Real Estate
  118. Own Julia DeVille Jewellery
  119. Participate in a Japanese Tea Ceremony
  120. Pigeon
  121. Play a Pinball Machine
  122. Play a Song on a Harmonica
  123. Play Bingo at a Bingo Hall
  124. Publish all the books I write
  125. Raw Oysters
  126. Read 15 books a year
  127. Record a Song
  128. Relax in a Natural Hot Spring
  129. Renovate our home and finally just enjoy it
  130. Ride a Camel
  131. Ride a Segway
  132. Ride in a Gondola
  133. Ride in a Hot Air Balloon
  134. Ride in a Tuk Tuk
  135. Ride on a Cable Car
  136. Ride on a Scary Roller Coaster
  137. Ride on a Subway
  138. Sashimi
  139. Sea Urchin
  140. See a Broadway Play
  141. See a Cirque du Soleil Show
  142. See a Coral Reef
  143. See a Las Vegas Show
  144. See a TED Talk Live
  145. See Cappadocia’s Fairy Chimneys | Turkey
  146. See Gaudi’s La Sagrada Familia | Spain
  147. See Patti Smith perform Horses
  148. See the Dalai Lama
  149. See the Eiffel Tower Glitter at Night | France
  150. See the Hanging Temple in Mount Hengshan | China
  151. See the Mona Lisa at the Louvre | France
  152. See the Northern Lights | Alaska
  153. See the Pamukkale Hot Springs | Turkey
  154. See the Pyramids of Giza | Egypt
  155. Sell everything (ok, 80%) of my belongings
  156. Shoot a gun
  157. Sing a Karaoke Duet
  158. Sing Karaoke in Berlin
  159. Sleep in a Treehouse
  160. Sleep in a Yurt
  161. Sleep in an Overnight Train
  162. Smoke a Hookah
  163. Snorkel
  164. Snorkel/dive the Underwater Museum | Mexico
  165. Stand in Front of the Taj Mahal | India
  166. Stand Under a Waterfall
  167. Start a Blog
  168. Start a Blog
  169. Start a Charity/Foundation
  170. Stay Awake for 24 Hours
  171. Stay in an Underwater Hotel
  172. Step Foot in all 7 Continents
  173. Sushi
  174. Swim in Jellyfish Lake | Palau
  175. Swim with Pink Dolphins | Amazon
  176. Take the Walk of Faith, Tianmen Mountain | China
  177. Take a Self-portrait photo of myself on the 1st of the month for as long as I desire.
  178. Tap Dance
  179. Times Square | New York
  180. Touch a Pyramid
  181. Touch a Tarantula
  182. Tour a Mayan Ruin
  183. Travel to India, Nepal and Tibet
  184. Try Bikram Yoga
  185. Try Cupping Therapy
  186. Visit a Temple
  187. Visit the White House | Washington DC
  188. Visit the Winchester House in California
  189. Volunteer at an archeological dig
  190. Walk a Suspension Bridge
  191. Walk on Hot Coals
  192. Walk on Stilts
  193. Walk the Great Wall of China | China
  194. Walk the Las Vegas Strip | Nevada
  195. Wear Colored Contacts
  196. Write 20 books
  197. Write a Children’s Book
  198. Write a cookbook
  199. Write a Love Note with Lipstick on the Bathroom Mirror
  200. Write a Song
  201. Write my Name in Wet Cement

 

Sometimes you want to disappear into your made up world

Sometimes you want to disappear into your made up worlds. You want to have all of their lack of give-a-shits.

You want to much more than this thing you have now.

You feel owed.

Why are you still fat?

Why aren’t you successful?

Why do you hate it when someone looks over your shoulder to see what I’m doing?

What is your truth?

You’re incapable of creating when you’re here and now.

What happens when you’re fixed? Do you become irrelevant?

Do you die?

 

Elusive as fuck

One day looks like the other day
Looks the same as tomorrow

Eat shit bullshit repeat

Joy is pretend
Found between the sofa cushions with a bunch of stale unsalted peanuts and one sugared almond
Joy’s the sugared almond
Costs a bunch and rots your teeth
Joy’s elusive, not an unsalted peanut which is everywhere

Like a sugared almond, Joy is for special occasions
And they’re distant as a memory

Repetition is a pack of unsalted peanuts
Always on sale
The olds buy them in bulk packets with bland labels
Everyone can afford repetition
‘s’just that I don’t want it
Beige
Samey
Repetitive
Day as today as yesterday as tomorrow.

Jealousy and Disappointment

Today I cried and made a choice.

Today I chose the wrong way but I know I chose it.

There’s nothing like walking into your bedroom to find your lover staring at the wall, defeated.
Because I made a choice.
He didn’t like.

At least I’m not a lamp made of skin.
I heard this. I don’t own it. I’m not Jewish.

But I’m told I lived in a kind of concentration camp.
I feel nervous at this because I’m not sure anyone is allowed to own the idea of the concentration camp unless they are Jewish.

But it resembled one – albeit with food and school and the rest of it.

My therapist describes my concentration camp as a solitary life, where a child cooks for herself from the age of six, where she has no friends, no family, not until after 5. Where bullies were the norm. Where she sat at the front of the bus, the low seat next to the driver. Where she was the last kid off the one hour bus ride home.

My therapist tells me that my concentration camp looks lonely. Where the adults are unpredictable, even in anger. Anger involves oranges flung at mum. Unpredictable anger where a car is driven towards a pole. Unpredictable anger who didn’t come home until late at night. Mum was sad an lonely and thought she was responsible for killing her mother, but didn’t worry about how she was killing me.

I don’t know who I am. Stories flood my brain and I don’t know what’s real and what’s a lie. My dreams feel more real than my memories, at times.

I made a choice tonight and I’ll live with it.

I grabbed a bottle and chose to drink it.

Should I feel bad that I feel great for the first time in months?

How did I make my therapist cry?
What does it mean?
I feel like everything I tell him is a lie.

No.

What is it?

I’m told no at every turn.
And it makes me 15 again, want to say “fuck you, even if I agree, I’m saying yes”.

No to painting the bathroom blue.
No to more cats.
No to more dogs.

No to making.

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