Sleeping with Ghosts

|||Archives|| Latest |

I am undeserving of comfort

2023-12-01 - 9:46 p.m.

My dad called earlier to tell me he got a new TV. And that my mom's doctor isn't going to pursue any further treatment for my mom's cancer. But he has a TV again. He went a whole two days without one.

Yes, it was sandwiched like that in the phone call.

She had surgery a couple weeks ago to remove the uterus and attached bits, but they found that the cancer had spread beyond that... which means stage 3. From here on out, it's just appointments and a ticking clock. "She's senile, so treatment wouldn't be worth it--wouldn't improve the quality of time ahead of her." Paraphrased.

My heart feels so heavy. And I'm still paralyzed.

Knocked Down by a Feather

2023-09-19 - 12:54 p.m.

I could plop down some information about my mom today. Could at least say they think it's *only* stage 2 cancer.

Eh. I am selfishly curious about the genetic testing they plan on doing to see if she has Lynch syndrome... because if she does, then there's a good chance my sister and/or I have it. It's a very bad thing to have; it's connected to several fun cancers.
I'm more than a little worried about it since my mom's mother died of cancer, one of my half-uncles died of cancer (never met him or the other one), and now my mom has cancer.

So. There's. That.

And I keep dreaming about Bry lately. They're not even directly about her. She's just there, sometimes.

I have this Crown Royal bag of dice her dad gave me many years ago when we toyed with the idea of DnD or VtM. I can't stand even looking at it, and I'm not sure what to do with it. Bury it? Burn it? I don't know.

And then there's the pendant. When we were in middle school, she had her dad make me an amethyst pendant with copper wire. I wore it every day for years and years until the copper wore out. He took the stone and made a new setting out of silver wire, which I also wore for years and years. It's in my jewelry box now. The chain I used for it broke a long time ago, and I never found a silver chain I liked well enough to replace it. It had to be sturdy since I wore it every day... And then it just retired. As did wearing most jewelry, really. I have earrings in that have been in my ears for a decade at least, but I seldom wear anything more than that.

I dunno where I was going. Um. Dang.

is there a cat in the box

2023-08-31 - 6:24 p.m.

If I repeat myself, I apologize. I don't re-read my diary much, and I write in a few different places (an actual journal being the main one, when I have the energy).

No word yet on biopsy results. I called off work yesterday, and it went by in a blur. Maybe I should have worked... though I probably would have been one slip away from a mental breakdown. Who can say?

Actually... can't even think what I wanted to write.


2023-08-29 - 12:49 p.m.

For years, the space between my ears has been a delicate bundle of spidersilk encased in the thinnest sea shell. If the outer part breaks, the inside will blow away.

My dad called today to inform me that my mom probably has cancer. They'll find out Thursday. Strangely enough, I was just talking about her today with a coworker. It wasn't an in-depth convo... I just mentioned that she was essentially an absent parent and that my dad got custody of my sister and I when they divorced. I guess it was at the fore-front of my mind because I think about it a lot anymore.

Trauma and cyclical thoughts go hand-in-hand. Just a thought about one dark thing will spark the entire trauma network in that spidersilk to come to life and play its greatest hits. I mixed my metaphors. Fuck it.

I'm not sure how to feel. When her dementia escalated three years ago, I mourned more for the relationship I'll never have with her than I did for her. I guess I mourned as if she were gone. Before the whole eviction and brother thing, I tried to raise the alarm bells. I knew something wasn't right with her... She was looping far more than her usual. (Looping is how I refer to her repeating herself, which is something she had always done. She'd tell the same stories dozens of times fishing for sympathy or attention. The model narcissist. She'd ask the same questions dozens of times because she wasn't listening to the answer the first time and her brain was already racing to the next sympathy bait.) At the time, my sister was deeply removed from any interaction with my mom. Might as well have been on the moon. And I didn't know what to do or how serious it was. My relationship with my mom was already strained to the point of near-non-existent. I would get a call or a visit maybe once a month. All the crap going down with my brother (she took him out of his state care, where he basically lived in a home with other people like him--or far worse than him) strained it even more because I knew it was a bad idea. And she did it solely so she could afford a house or apartment after she lost the family house. If not for him breaking into some neighbor's house (and mom forgetting to pay rent), I wonder how much longer they'd have gone on like that... And what other stupid things he would have done.

I don't even know where my half-brother is these days. I have no relationship with him at all. Maybe if he hadn't stabbed my mom in the face with a screwdriver when he was 12, and then been bounced around the country from hospital to hospital, I would have gained some sibling bond with him? I doubt it. I was his babysitter for a very long time... Basically, she'd leave him with me when it was her custody-assigned weekend to have me. And she'd also drop him off at my dad's house whenever she felt like it. There was a lot of resentment there. Still is. I was 12 when he was born, and as he grew up and his disability became apparent, it became harder and harder to deal with him. He was destructive from the word go.

I digress. He's in state care again. That's all I know.

Before this turns into me trying to justify being separated from any familial obligation to my mom, I'll just put forth that no one should feel obligated to take care of "family" who are family in name only. My sister got stuck with my mom because getting help for a senior citizen with her state of mind is next to impossible if you don't have the money. You'd think that she, too, could be committed to state care. I don't know. I have no idea how these things work, despite reading up on random shit available on the internet. She is "still our mom." I know that, my sister knows that, my dad knows that. But to be obligated to someone responsible for so much abuse, so much neglect...? For the malformation of your sense of self, self-worth, and mental well-being?

I'm not so sure. I am sad. Trying not to be selfishly sad all over again. Trying to reconcile with the fact that this is it. It's bad.

Just waiting on biopsy results.

Are you there, Odin? It's me, Fyx.

2023-06-29 - 6:40 p.m.

70 years. That's the sentence Steve received today for murdering three people. He's 65 years old. He'll die in prison.

I don't believe any number of years would satisfy me. But at least it is done. No more wondering what will happen to him. He'll die in prison. Some day. I'm glad the judge rejected the defense of him having a mental snap and concluding this was the solution to possible "financial collapse." As I wrote before, it's complete bullshit. As co-dependent as they all were on each other, they were still adults. Any one of them could have fallen all the way down into the gutter (though that never would have happened) and risen to dust themselves off and find a way out. No, that's not why he murdered them. Maybe that's what he's telling himself.

If he still believes in the Asatru faith, I wonder if he's doing mental gymnastics in his own head to wrestle with his beliefs. I don't imagine Frigg would think very highly of familicide.

I guess that's between him and his gods.

Insert your own title idc

2023-05-18 - 6:07 p.m.

Today, Wilson's defense entered a guilty plea, and he's to receive 25 years for each murder. Not sure if "consecutive" or all at once. Either way, he'll probably die in prison. The actual sentencing is in June.

What I cannot wrap my head around is that it took them so long to do a psych eval. He apparently suffers from "mental illness" (no shit) and was delusional due to medication. After correcting his meds, he is no longer delusional. And then there's the motivation for the murders. He said he was afraid of their financial situation with Lisa's retirement approaching. Which... I'm sorry, no. I'm sure she would have received a pension and social security. Bry had a very stable income from the Library. Bronwyn may have gone through jobs like a pinball, but she always found one and could have contributed to the household once faced with that responsibility.

They weren't destitute. They weren't on gov't benefits or turning to food banks. That would never have happened. I don't believe their outgoing expenses were so great that they would be in dire straits if Lisa retired.

And I don't believe he failed to kill himself, too, because he'd had too much wine.

I'm not in his head nor do I want to be, but it feels like a very selfish motivation is the root of the crime. I think he felt like he was solving a problem. He was trapped with 4 depressed people, including himself. All of them were extremely codependent, with three of them being dependent on him for transportation even with some of them using some form of public transportation (maybe even more dependent on him with the pandemic--I assume they took less public transport due to that). He was a "house husband." How much strain did he really endure as the house caretaker of three adult women? I don't know. I don't know who did what chores around the house or who handled finances.

Whatever the case may be, he took their lives rather than just pack up and escape a situation he deemed so dire that the only solution was murder. He could have just left. Would it have hurt them? Yes. Would they still be alive? Yes. It would have been a struggle for him, for sure. He could have moved in with a family member, gone homeless, even just killed only himself... But he didn't do that. He'll read books in jail, get three meals a day, be given medication for all his ills, and maybe think about what he did and wonder what he could have done differently.

I'm taking a few days off next week with it being the anniversary of the murders.
I don't want to be a little powder keg while trying to stock fucking pencils or candles or whatever stupid shit I have to do at my shitty job. It's a paycheck. But my mental health is hanging by a thread and that thread has been unraveling for a year.

The gift that keeps on giving and taking and giving and

2023-01-20 - 2:43 p.m.

I like shouting into the void. Mumbling into the void? It helps me clear my thoughts.

About five days ago, I developed a fever overnight. I tried to go to work, because I was not aware how unaware I was of myself, and then returned home and took my temperature. Just a couple points shy of 102. And then the lethargy hit me hard. I was in bed for 2 days. And then I felt a tickle in my chest. Hmm. Whatever could this be? Congestion hit like a ton of bricks. I've barely eaten this week. No appetite.

Yesterday, I woke up with no sense of smell or taste. Took an at home covid test and it was positive. But an at home test isn't good enough to take a leave of absence from work (I get 10 days), so I made an appointment and got a test that has a paper trail today. When that email comes in, I can file for loa, at least. Adult shit is fun.

I have no idea where I picked it up or when. I wear a mask in public, still, and am pretty vigilant about washing my hands... But I guess it was bound to happen. No one else wears a mask. I haven't had a booster in a while.

This sucks. I feel like 10lb of shit squeezed into a 5lb bag. The fever has been down to 99-100 for a couple days. The congestion in my face all the way into my lungs feels like an ever-shifting sandbag of hate. I've had worse. Pneumonia was worse. I'm trying to stay on top of this so it doesn't turn into that monster. What's fun is that I have had alllllllll of the symptoms. I haven't vomited since the first fever day, fortunately.

I just hope I can get over this quickly. Five more days and I'll have to go back to work... And it's hard figuring what my energy levels will be like then when right now they are nil. The fever dreams are unpleasant. Cyclical. Annoying. Cyclical. The brain fog is real, but I can't tell how much of that is the fever or the congestion or the fatigue. Maybe it's a result of all three.

let me tell you somethin'

2022-12-30 - 5:49 p.m.

I reach my little, gnarly tendrils out and try to grasp at things that aren't there. Like a ghost trying to hold onto a memory.

The holidays were a mixed bag. On the one hand, I was stressed out from work and all the bullshit that goes on there. I was also extremely frail in the mental wellness department. Still am, if we're being honest. One more holiday to go. On the other hand, I was pretty spoiled for xmas.

So, inescapable nightmares? check.

New TV? check.

For the first time in almost 2 decades, I have a new cell phone. Don't @ me. I'm a boring pos. The landline was more expensive than a cheap cell phone plan, so that won me over. I love technology, but I am also a frugal turd goblin. I have no idea how I have lived without one for so long. Just lucky, I guess. No one really calls me but my partner and my dad. All my other contacts can reach me through the internet :X And that's probably how it will remain, even though I have a phone thingamajig now.

I smashed my pinky at work and it hurts so damn much akghasghg;h ow.

Burn the panties I guess

2022-11-17 - 9:00 p.m.

In the dumpster fire that is my brain, I just remembered something terribly stupid. It was sparked by binging Trixie and Katya on youtube. They mentioned voodoo, and my skull opened up like an old lady's change purse. This gem of crusted shit popped out:

Over 20 years ago, my former friend and her husband showed up at my door. She was upset because he had cheated on her (I guess against her wishes because they had a pretty open--yet extremely toxic--relationship). I don't know how or why, but they had a pair of panties belonging to the woman he had slept with. In hindsight, this is so incredibly weird but I didn't question it too much at the time because we were all incredibly weird, and she was always doing borderline insane shit. I have mentioned her here before many years ago: Julie. Anyway, she wants to put a curse on this poor girl. And I just roll with it because 1) I don't believe in curses, 2) My beliefs back then were wishy-washy, but I didn't believe magic worked that way, and 3) it would maybe calm her down and remove me from the situation faster to get it over with. If she should be cursing anyone, it shoulda been herself for continuing to stay with that guy and have an open relationship and know he was bound to put his dick where she didn't approve because it happened probably more than even she knew. But I digress....

So, I know nothing about real revenge type magic. I was loosely Wiccan at the time, and Wiccans don't practice voodoo or dark arts or curses. Not real Wiccans, anyway. At most, they have spells for repelling such feelings/curses and redirecting them back at the user. General neo-paganism has diluted Wicca down to wishful thinking and crystals. I don't practice anymore. But that's not what I'm here to write about.

We proceed to "curse" the panties. I made up shit on the fly. Whatever looked and sounded genuine to her was enough to do the trick. Then, she wanted to burn them? I think? My memory is spotty. The husband, all the while, was just looking totally lost and sort of going along with it, too, because I guess her directing anger at the other woman was better than taking responsibility himself. Idk. We went to a local park that was easily accessed even in the middle of the night. Once there, she continued to ritual-ize destruction of the panties as proxy for the other woman. It was the dumbest bullshit, and I'm fairly sure police would have locked us up for being weird dumpster people if they'd seen what was going on. I don't remember much of the night after that. I'm amazed I remembered this event at all. I must have locked it away, along with so many other interactions with Julie. I know I sanitized everything after that. Your crazy friend brings crazy magic panties into your house, and you wash everything down and "cleanse" your house.

Sometimes I can't help but think about her and all the things I last heard about her. Nazi paraphernalia, Mexico, more kids.
Her first child is in his twenties right now. Holding him as an infant was one of my last good memories with her before the... whatever that was--psychotic break, misdiagnosed post-partum, bi-polar disorder breakdown? I hope that kid had a better life than what I was seeing it head towards. She had the audacity to say I was still his godmother one of the last times she reached out to me. (Which I know I wrote about here many years ago.)

Anyhow, now I can't help but wonder what sort of curses she tried to put on me. She did think I was after her husband, after all, even though I thought he was just foul. He made me deeply uncomfortable, even in front of her, and she just let it happen. I mean, the dude tried to sniff my crotch while resting his head in my lap at a park. What. The. Fuck? Ugh... They were both such prizes. I wish I hadn't felt so committed to her because we'd been best friends for so long. She treated me like shit most of the time. I put up with so much bullshit when I had better people in my life. Better people who deserved my time and my love. People that wouldn't try to set me up by surprise with a guy who's only prerequisite for sleeping with me was shaved legs. (I was asexual at the time, which she saw as a problem that needed fixing). People that wouldn't tell me I would never understand true love. People that treated me like a person. People who wouldn't block me from their lives without speaking to me.

I am still bitter. That happened 22 years ago, and I am still bitter. Was that the curse? Did she curse me with heartbreak and bitterness? Good thing I don't believe in curses. All that crap is just natural.

Sweet Sangria

2022-10-16 - 6:07 p.m.

Imagine losing access to the part of your brain that recognizes your own hands, your feet, the side of your nose when you look down... your own reflection in the mirror. You still experience sensations. You know they are happening to you. But the disconnect, the disassociation is so strong that nothing feels "right." Nothing feels as it should be.

If you can get there, that's how I've been feeling a lot anymore. I've always had the disassociation thing or the disassociative amnesia. A trauma response, I'm told.

Happy Birthday to Bry. Nothing happy about it. It's just something we say, isn't it? I hope your birhday is happy, so Happy Birthday! The dead can't feel one way or another about a birthday or what you hope for them. She would have been 43 today if her father hadn't shot her.

My chest hurts.

Today, I wanted to do something for her--to honor her. But it's no different from any other day. I shed a few tears, I carry on, I cry again. I'm listening to some Tori and thinking of the last show of hers we saw. Ages ago. Louisville. ~Drive all night.

If life's a tapestry, Bry's sewn into most of mine. In more of it than not. Her death feels like someone's yanking hard on her threads and trying to pull me apart. I'm full of similes and bullshit tonight.

Shade and sweet water, Bry.

Flowery Language and the Fools Who Fart It

2022-10-06 - 3:51 p.m.

Be kinder to yourself. That's what I keep saying, keep affirming, the last few years. It's not the easiest thing to do when you've been hard on yourself for nearly your entire life, but trying it out is better than nothing. Trying it out makes you really step back and see what an asshole you've been to yourself... even if you couldn't help it. That's been my experience, anyway. And then there's the second trick of not berating yourself for being an asshole. It's surprising how that can loop back around right into being an asshole to yourself when you're desperately trying not to be.

Which leads me here to think about Bry again in a more open setting than just my skull cavity. Inevitably, I'll think of her and my thoughts take a running leap at that slippery slope of self-loathing for not being in her life more consciously the last few years.

I sit here in a desk chair with a bathrobe draped over it which was intended for her as a Yule gift some years ago. Before the holiday, I had messaged her about getting together to exchange gifts and all that seasonal jazz. I can't recall the exact conversation, but my squirmy memory is telling me that she was somewhat distant and basically replied with "Why bother?" I don't recall if I inquired why she answered this way or if something were wrong... I just know that we didn't really hang out after that. Not in person. Despite the fact that she lived a 15 minute drive away. I was flummoxed about the whole thing, yet I didn't try to course correct, and I'll never know why she chose to write those words.

If I'd been a better person with a better brain... Oh the what-ifs I could chase right now.

Instead, I have to let the guilt rack me like a storm door to the face. And then I have to regain composure and repeat, "Be kinder to yourself."
You might as well ask me to tap dance on a spinning top.

I don't have many friends anymore, and my bubble has just shrunk even further. My partner calls me a hermit. Truly, I can't pinpoint why I don't socialize more. I mean, I am an introvert, but I can handle some socializing as long as I get to retreat when I am ready and decompress when I am done.

There is one thing I know about myself which is pretty shit and I've wrestled with since my late twenties--I am incredibly selfish with my time. It comes from being held hostage by my mom when I was a child. Okay, let me rephrase that so it doesn't seem like she was ransoming me for my dad's paycheck. Ahem. As far back into my childhood as I can remember, my mother would take me out with her while she went shopping. She went shopping a lot. I have more memories of this time with her than I do of anything else. Most people might remember all the times their parents took them to the park or taught them how to ride a bike or took them on an ice cream date or w/e. I remember being dragged along on every shopping trip. I remember wandering away from her and sometimes hiding in the clothing racks. I remember sitting in the car for hours because I was just too tired and too bored out of my goddamn mind to walk around the same shops and malls again and again and again. And I never had any stimulation on any of these trips. No books, no headphones, no portable games, no coloring books. Nothing. I was just there; I was just a collection of molecules existing and it never occurred to her that I had needs.

So, I'm very, VERY selfish with my time. I hate being at the mercy of others or doing anything by their schedules when it's something I didn't sign up for. Do not drag me to the DMV when you need your license renewed, for example. If I have something with me to entertain myself, I might be okay. Otherwise, please just let me exist on my terms.

It's kinda crappy that my brain noodles like this, but I can't help it. As a compromise, I do force myself to try not to feel like a hostage when I do get pulled into things I don't want to do. Being an adult is a series of inconveniences, so if you don't compromise, you will have anger/stress issues. Or I will. I get anxious just thinking about being at the mercy of others. This is why I prefer driving myself to whatever engagements I've promised to attend. There. Now I'm at no one's mercy. I can leave whenever I want.

The rub is that I have to really get myself warmed up to do anything anymore. I'm so tired. When even hanging out with people I like becomes a chore because I feel like shit, I tend to become a little computer goblin and stay home. Ugh, I have to go hang out with people? BUT I WORK IN THE MORNING. WHINE.

The stars have to align for me to do social things. No prior commitments, no work in the morning, no time constraints, etc. And, yeah, I do spontaneous shit all the time in contrast to what you may think. But I am still weighing the consequences like some sort of neurotic turd.

Truly, this is living.

MOD are you out there?

2022-08-12 - 10:51 p.m.

Why does grief wax and wane now? Is it the fact that two months have passed and my mind wanders into dark alleys as if looking for a fight?

I don't fuckin' know. So so so much of the things I learned I loved were shared with my best friend. Books, shows, movies, games, anime, drawing, writing stories, creating characters... All of those things are steeped in memories with her. If I watch a new show, I'll think, "I bet she would have liked this." If I doodle in my notebook while on break at work, I'll think, "This reminds me of the vampires we used to draw." On and on, everything circles back to her. And I get so deflated, so angry, so blindsided with guilt because I can't reach out to her and ask, "Have you watched The Sandman yet? What have you been up to?"

That chance is gone.

I am undeserving of comfort - 2023-12-01
Knocked Down by a Feather - 2023-09-19
is there a cat in the box - 2023-08-31
Cracked - 2023-08-29
Are you there, Odin? It's me, Fyx. - 2023-06-29

lost - data