Journal Entry

Thirty

I turned 30. A few days later Mum turned 60. 30 years ago I was born. It was a Tuesday. The doctors fucked up her C-section so she spent her 30th in the hospital; sick as a dog. Dad visited with my brothers and sister. They brought a sponge cake. It wasn’t the grandest of birthdays. Once they realised they’d left clamps inside her they opened her up again, got them out, and she recovered.

I turned 30 on a Thursday. No fanfare. No spongecake but I had my health. Over the years I’ve grown to the idea that we share a birthday together. A handful of days is all that separates them, but between us a lifetime of experience. At 30, Mum was married with 4 children of which I forever remain the youngest. When I turned 30 I was (and am) single. No kids and painfully alone.

It’s a fight. A struggle. 30 years ago though Mum was fighting in a war. She wanted out of the marriage I know, and it’d be a few more years yet until she gathered the strength for that offensive.

10 years ago I would have seen a multitude of differences between us. Not at all able of connecting the dots to see how we are alike. Today, I see a plethora of similarities that truly connect us.

In the 30 years since I was born Mum has found new purpose. Indomitable strength and vision. My first 30 years have been a muddle of soul-searching, struggles and discovering who I am. We’ve walked different paths that lead to the same destination. Thanks for being that guiding light Mum. Happy birthday to us.

Poems

Rock bottom

I’m going to preface this piece by advising that this is over a year old. Nicholas has come a long way since this evening. I publish for transparency but know that the sun rose much brighter the next day, and every day after. I publish just as a reminder that this is everything I’m not. I publish this to show that sometimes you can overthink things far, far too much. The product of which isn’t grounded in reality at all. This was my rock bottom but I’ve clawed right back.

I’m nearly out. I’m nearly free.

 

I’m a piece of shit, she doesn’t care

I’m incapable of being loved. I am nothing

I will never be anything. I am lifeless.

My corporeal form fails me at every turn.

I’m a piece of shit. I am worthless.

There is no point to my existence.

I should end it all here and now.
There is no purpose to my life.

I am a joke procuring no laughter.

I am disgusting beast.

I have no place. I am a piece of shit.

Why I was raised I will never know.

I am a product of ill circumstance.

No purpose nor worth.

I am my fathers son.

Damned.

I am doomed.

I am doom.

Afflicted by a malfunctioning brain.

A brain that was born to hate.

I am the piece of shit it hates.

I tear myself down.

Fuck it and everything.

None of it matters.

And she doesn’t care.

My mind shows horrible images.

Things with my power. My control.

I think I’m normal yet I entertain such violence.

I am truly terrible.

I am not worthy of her.

I am not worth of anything.

Fuck the world.

And fuck everything.

I am piece of shit.

I need to lay in the dirt and die.

Die.

Journal Entry

21/11/2018

If love is a rose then I’ve always wrapped my palm around those thorns and held onto it like a rodeo bronco. It hurts like hell but I can still smell the flower can’t I? I’m addicted to feeling. I’m addicted to feeling for I rarely feel much. Not to do a disservice to my friends and family but I’m someone who feels in extremes. What draws reaction from me is those highest of highs and sometimes unfortunately, those dark depths. So I spend most of my time not feeling much. I shuffle. I shamble. I meander through the park that is called life. I’m that solitary man sitting on the park bench staring into the distance. Not staring at anything or anywhere in particular. Just, staring.

Love to me is an awakening. If I see in black and white, these feelings bleed my vision into colour. I begin to see beyond myself. Seeing what could be. Seeing what can be. Seeing what two can achieve. Love inspires me. It fills my glass that’s sometimes half-empty, otherwise half-full. Feeling the love of another ensures I never fail. It empowers me. I never fail because I’d never quit. No task is too big, too hard or arduous. I fight with tenacity to keep that light of love to guide me.

However love for me now means the unknown. It means saying goodbye when I don’t want to. It means I don’t know where we’re going or even if there’ll ever be a we. Love has become a stranger. I grasp in the blinding dark to find only to find where she once was. Dark because my love scares her I think. Where I see open plains in the most fruitful valley in the land of opportunity, I believe she see’s a single path carving through the depths of a mountain to an already determined destination.

Love gets lost in translation. I struggle to explain my love sometimes. I just want them to understand. Here’s an attempt.

We’re driving down a highway. You’ve got the wheel. We don’t know where we’re going but we’ll figure it out. You thought you wanted to go to the beach but maybe now we’re headed to the mountains. I don’t mind ’cause I’m happy to do it with you. I’m playing DJ. It’s equal parts eye-rolls and karaoke. It’s an adventure we’re both figuring out. We don’t know if we’ve got enough money. But we’ve got no place to be. We’re scared but it’s alright. I take your hand and give it a squeeze. I give it a squeeze because I’m trying to say I’d go anywhere with you but I don’t know how to say it without my heart skipping a beat. And I’m scared. I can see you’re scared too. I want to ask what’s wrong but I also don’t want to rock the boat. I know we’ll fight at some point. I’ll say something stupid or I’ll really push my luck with my song choices. But it’s OK. I could never hate you. You’re my person. I know you and you know me.

You’ve got the wheel. I want you to have your journey. Your adventure. I just want to enjoy the drive with you. And take stupid pictures. I love you and I’m just as scared as you.

Au revoir.

Journal Entry

It’s been a while

I haven’t posted anything for some time. Now evidently most of what I write here is for me as I don’t have an audience or much of one. Having an audience was never my intent. My intent was to put my thought onto a platform; into the ether. To be read, or not to be read but none the less, out there.

It’s been a rough year since I stopped pouring things out of my head. I’ve been in a confused and stressed head space. To tell the truth I’m not sure why I allowed it to occur. I say allow because it honestly was a slow accumulation of inaction across many areas of my personal and professional lives which culminated in the first major change in direction for me in over 7 years.

I’ve come to realise life is this funny old thing. A lumbering steam train that continues along the track regardless of whether you want it to or not. Travelling along there’s a great number of things that you can do to smooth the ride and even control which forks you take. But these undertakings require direct action and a responsible soul to carry the burden of those choices. I’ve been leaning on the side of inaction for some time now.

The tracks I’ve been hurtling down had fallen into disrepair. The ride had become bumpy nigh to the point of fear of derailment at any moment. But up until my moment of epiphany I thought there was little I could do. Powerless to exercising any modicum of control. Oh how wrong I have been. I realised however that my inaction was in fact a choice, not the absence of one. I had chosen to allow everything to take its deteriorating course. Luckily for I the cure was an easy one.

Take ownership. Make choices. Create change. I will no longer atrophy physically, mentally and emotionally.

Depression truly is a motherfucker. It’s caused me so much grief, stretched me to my limits and tested those I love dearly whilst they see me flip between victim and sage; being needy but then refusing assistance. Days spent lying in a fog reaching out to a select few that I abuse as emotional crutches. Cursing my isolation but negating to see how I have isolated myself. I sometimes imagine myself as a prisoner constructing the very walls around me whilst actively cursing the warden to release me. The warden steps forward and to my surprise is wearing my face.

I’m sorry to those who have felt disappointment in me, feel exhausted by me or who have lost patience with me. I thank you for choosing the kindness in not expressing it. I won’t let you down.

 

Poems

Progress

To take a step forward.

Do I take a step forward to be asked to step back?

Do I take a step forward when they might’n step up?

Do I take that step forward for I and I alone?

Do I take this step forward to find my true bearing and step to the side?

Do I take the step?

Do I dare to take this step when I stand atop a cliff?

I walk onwards.

Journal Entry

11/06/2017

It’s been nearly 6 months since Dad passed away. I think I’m fortunate that looking back now, I don’t have any regrets with how our time was spent; there’s no part of me that looks back and wishes things were different. Ultimately, everything that passed between us, every interaction and shared moment, defined and shaped our relationship and helped nurture the peace I feel now. In those last few days watching him sleep, hearing him breath, I truly loved him. I am forever grateful that he was half the reason I came to be, despite 20 years protesting it.

I think most of the issue was I only ever looked at Dad through the lens of a son. I only allowed or rather, wanted him, to exist and behave as a father alone. I refused to see him as his own man who had his own dreams, loves, passions or ambitions, instead I tried to frame him around how I perceived he failed. He was a flawed man who I held up to the flame of my ideals yet acted surprised when the image burned to cinders. In the end though, I’m glad I was there and I know he was glad too.

Despite his brain tumour constantly shredding his faculties from him, I look back on our last 10 months and can count more beautiful moments than we’d shared in the last 10 years. What struck me the most was the day I was out walking him in his wheelchair through streets from his youth and we were talking about the years I spent farming. At the time, Dad was always insistent that the life I was leading was beneath me and I ought to move home and go to university or study in some capacity to forge a more financially viable career. I reminded him of how often he used to berate me for sticking it out so long and he was stunned.

Dad said to me “did I really say all those things? I didn’t really say that to you did I?”

“Yeah mate you did, but it’s long gone now so don’t worry about it”.

“I’m sorry I said those things Nicholas, working as a farmer was the best thing that ever happened to you and I’m proud”.

Who would have known that this short exchange absolved 27 years of my angst.

I miss you mate.

Journal Entry

24/05/2015

Dear Nick,

I’m writing this to you from that place just over the horizon. We’re two sides of the same coin, you and I. Together we make a whole. We have our differences though. You’ve got some tarnish and grime whilst I shine brightly. However, I only shine the way I do because of your sacrifice. You take all the shit and I receive the accolades. This makes you the better person than I’ll ever be. We’ll never share the same outlook. You’ll never see the world as I do but I hope someday the world looks at you the same way I do. If it’s any consolation I don’t think I’ll ever feel as alive as you do.

Thanks for not giving up yet Nick. We’re in this together.