Off My Chest

I need to get you off my chest

I’ve never felt relaxed in my life because you raised me in the war zone of your wrath
Bombs of panic explode in my mind all day every day
Choking me with your smoke and mirrors even though you are far away
My ears ring with your shouting
You were the biggest little tyrant
Not even two years my senior
Yet always more needy
Mandating, yet begging
I didn’t realize the power I had over you, and still do
You were the one dependent on me for affirmation, not the other way around
I didn’t have a choice then, but I do now-
To live a life without your storms brewing on my horizon
I’ve never slept well in my life because I thought you were going to murder me in my sleep throughout our childhood and adolescence
I used lie in bed wearing a cross around my neck with a note attached to it asking you to think before acting, waiting for dawn to break, dreading another day with you, feeling trapped and hopeless with no end in sight
I never felt protected, respected, seen or heard by our parents
In moments of desperation, I wish you had killed me
Instead you continue to torture me passive aggressively, and I am passive passive aggressive
Silenced, as if buried alive
I toss and turn, tormented between insomnia and nightmares
I’m trying to think before I act
I am upset that I’m even thinking about you now
I am upset about how you get upset ‘at’ me: you throw your rage at me and have me clean up the mess, time and time again, left to calm your ass down as if your reactions were justifiable or somehow my fault
It was never my fault
I am not responsible for how you feel
Leave me alone you evil bitch
I want to scream at you with the force of 35 years of repressed anger and tears
At the same time, I am trying to let go of the hot coal which burns my palm
I am trying to let the rippling waters of my pond be still
I am trying to not be irritated, for only then will you no longer be irritating
I am trying to take responsibility for my thoughts and feelings
I am tired of trying so damn hard
I am ready for ease
I am ready for peace
I am ready to breathe
Please, get off my chest
I don’t need to ask- I am responsible for how I feel
I’m not sure what to do next
I’ll probably meditate and self-medicate with raw emo poetry
Like the note pinned to my cross-necklace, you will probably never read this
But maybe those who matter will
Those who feel they are suffering alone
May find healing in this onion peel
And breathe just one breath more freely
For this I humbly pray
Namaste

Love Languages

If you want to show me that you care about me

Be gentle

Be non-judgmental

Don’t bully me or pressure me, manipulate me or coerce me

Don’t try to imprint your paranoid delusions on my mind

Don’t ever tell me what to do, when, or with whom

Control is not my love language

My love language is freedom

Acceptance

Shining light in darkness

Healing and growth

Leaning through the veil of illusion

Not argumentative protrusion into the autonomy of others

You asked me if you were ‘other people’ to me

Absurdly

Like a child wailing from ego injury, I reassured you that you were special, that you are important to me. You are, but for different reasons than you think you are.

Though we are separate, we are also not separate

We are one spirit

You have forgotten

May you remember

Until then, you babble on

Rambling brook

Carrying messages in bottles

Smashing against the rocks of my enlightenment

If you want to win the game, you have to play

To play, you must be playful

Stop making everything so serious, so grave

Stop pretending that you care about oppressed people

As you actively oppress me

You shout for the voiceless, marching with your fist in the air

As you silence my voice without a care

If you care about me, let me be myself, let me live my life

You have your own life to live, your own love language of anger and jealousy

To communicate, we must learn each other’s languages

I think I’m learning your language of anger when I want to shout at you, ‘Leave me alone, I’ve always wanted you out of my life, I’ve had enough of your abuse’.

I refuse to be controlling and jealous like you.

Perhaps you will learn my language and say, ‘I accept you as you are without judgment, I love you unconditionally, I support you as you follow your heart’

When the High Wears Off

You can drink and smoke and swallow

Sniff and huff and wallow
Burn it up, inject it in
But no amount of noise will silence the din
I hear the roar of your pain
I see the fire in your brain
Anxiety and depression rage
Fueling the words on this page
I’ve tried it all
I’ve had a ball
I’ve lived through hell
Just to tell
What I have learned
What I have earned
Highs are temporary
Where will I be
When my next high wears off
Highs always wear off…
After chasing many a transient high
Which only left me feeling low
I’m building upward toward the sky
Growing that inner glow
I’m creating a sense of safe space to come home to
After another long day of battling anxiety monsters and depression demons
My mental sanctuary is invisible, yet indispensable
It is my daily practice, my intention, my breath
My practice is to remind myself that I belong here
Even if I don’t believe it at first
I am worthy
Even if I don’t allow myself to receive at first
I am a person
Even though I’ve spent a lifetime of feeling lesser-than
Of feeling like I owed my life to strangers
I’ve survived so many dangers
I’m lucky
I’m ready
To start living
To feel beyond high
Cultivating a sustainable solution without bodily pollution
Emotional storms are best weathered while wearing a life vest
So I envelope my chest with positive visualizations
Letting my heart garden blossom and thrive
With this breath, I am alive
I am beyond high

Earth Mama

Earth Mama

You always held me

I never left your embrace

You always loved me

Everywhere I look I see your face

I lost touch for a while

My heart broke and cracked open

Your heart kept right on beating

Slow and steady

You kept on supporting me and nourishing me

Even when I felt like I was falling and famished

You filled the cracks in my heart

With golden light

Making my heart even more beautiful than before it broke

Earth Mama, thank you for your generosity

Thank you for this life

Thank you for your love

Thank you for your patience

Thank you for believing in me

When I didn’t believe in anything

Beyond belief,

I know what I have lived

Now I know how to love

ACEs

ACEs

Adverse Childhood Experiences

Most of us have had adverse childhood experiences
Some of us more than others-
Traumatic experiences with catastrophic consequences which ripple out from our core to the edges of existence
Some of us have lived a life of consistent resistance
We were struggling, fighting uphill battles
When we should have felt carefree, playing with rattles

Experiences so awful and early
That rigid prison bars were imposed around our developing minds and bodies
Restricting our growth

I’m not writing an excuse for my shortcomings
I’m fueling my fire to heal humanity
Enough already with the insanity

Trauma tangles our DNA, the epigenetics way
Turning off certain genes and turning on others,
But we can be better than our fathers and mothers
We don’t have to pass it on
We can heal ourselves

Do something each day to heal yourself, your body will guide you in what to do-
rest, relaxation
movement, meditation
quality sleep and fresh food to eat
energy healing visualization, repeating positive affirmations

I won’t ever be the person I might have been had I not had all those adverse childhood experiences- every form of abuse and neglect
raised by people who were unwell, making my childhood a living hell
However, because I am a wounded warrior, I have a burning desire to share my fire, let my inner glow light the way for others to know that a better life is possible

You are your own healer.
There is so much to fear and worry about.
So much to feel sad and angry about.
I spend a great deal of time and energy worrying what others think of me.
This is likely because of the explosive rage inflicted upon me whenever I displeased others while I was growing up.
But they were displeased to begin with.
Their happiness was never my responsibility
And now I feel like everybody’s happiness is my responsibility
But it is not
I am only responsible for myself

It is enough to mind my own mind- check in with my thoughts without worrying about what everyone else is thinking all the time.

This is a practice, and practicing is enough.

Constant dripping of water hollows out a stone.

My pain is the stone, and my healing is the water.

Like water, I do not stop when I encounter an obstacle, I keep flowing. I heard that all rivers flow to the ocean.

Your healing is natural, it is part of the universal life force.
But you can help it along- how you treat yourself is the most important action you can take.

Oh Great Spirit, may I stay on this healing path.

I have taken many exams, however healing from my ACEs is the most important test I want to ace.

Thank you to all the healers, all the hard-working professionals who help raise awareness about ACEs, help prevent trauma, and help blaze the trail of recovery.

The Warrior-Princess and the Dragon

Once upon a long enough time
There was a Warrior-Princess who could spin mad rhymes

She slayed other people’s dragons, as she earned a dime
Solving problems for fun, in her spare time

She invited all possible stress into her life
She felt strong as she stood amidst the onslaught of strife

She gathered knowledge and skills
To prevent and cure ills
But one thing seems to evade her still-
Overcoming the fear of her own dragon self

Every princess is also a warrior
Though she may feel trapped in a tower
Or a hospital corridor
Held captive by her fear of disappointing others,
Our heroine kept the fear of her dragon-self near

Our warrior-princess, while a vanquisher of things big and scary,
a master of getting into situations quite hairy,
was scared to death of her inner dragon,
she was terrified to speak her truth- to let out her desire, spit her anger-fire

The warrior-princess is me, and I’ve come to see
that the fear of dragons is all in my mind
My dragon has been my dear companion this whole time
ready to make noise if I’d only let it be free

I’ve let my reptilian brain keep me in trouble
when I could have been riding my dragon
floating like a bubble

For too long I shut my dragon down with stress
I felt so helpless and under duress
My dragon was ready to roar all along

I let my mammalian brain drive me insane
sticky emotions pulled me down the drain

Yet somehow my spirit persisted
My healing couldn’t be resisted

I’m ready to rise up and vocalize my voice, choose my choice
That may sound like a no-brainer,
but actually it’s a neo-brainer
Our Neo-cortex can function and rise above
When we trade our fear response for love

I’m ready to breathe my fire, let my power transpire
Let my dragon protect me
Instead of keeping it hidden
For too long I cowered as I became more trauma-ridden

I’m ready to become the Dragon Princess Warrior
Gather up my best, and leave the rest

I’m ready to combine the finesse of my Princess
with the courage of my Warrior
and the fierceness of my Dragon

Si se puede!

Yes I can live my best life

For so long, I sang a sad song
I silenced my self-advocacy
When as a young child, many molested me
I thought my dragon abandoned me when I yielded to the dragons of others
My dragon was protecting me the best way it knew how, the only way which I allowed it to- freeze, collapse, play dead

I am afraid of my dragon self,
and it is my fear to own
It is my fear to express through a poem

I’m ready to give up my crouching chameleon life
Shed my reptilian and mammalian skins
take my sweet hummingbird and eagle’s flight

To the fear of my dragon-self,
I bow in gratitude for the sacred journey
A-ho!

And A-ho! to us all
as on the journey we heed the call
to balance our inner princess, warrior and dragon
We have within us everything we need
and by balancing ourselves, we help bring balance to all, yes indeed
A-ho!

Shout-out to the mighty mitochondria-
I hope you’ve enjoyed the wild ride inside me
Thank you for all the ATP-
divine light energy
A-ho!

Triggerfinger

I wish I wasn’t so easily trauma triggered
It doesn’t take much to push me out of touch with feeling safe
A slightly raised voice makes me lose all choice but to
freeze and collapse
The physiology of my stress response takes over
Though I try to stop it, my heart races, my pulse pounds, a heaviness crushes my chest, suffocating me, it feels like I can’t breathe
How long has it been since I last took a breath?
Now I make a conscious effort to unclamp my rusted-shut jaw from my tongue but the battle is not so easily won
Years later the everyday trauma tape continues to play on loop I feel like I’m still in those moments when I didn’t know what to say, the epic fail drags me down into a pit of mental battering and spirit shattering
‘Good enough’ remains just out of reach
I hold the tension in my body and the voices of my aggressors echo between my ears
I’m caught between anger and tears                                                                                Regretting the past and fearing the future
I worry that if I ever get married or have a baby, my ex-partners will come after me in fits of blind jealousy
The ex’s that have expressed ill-will and death-wishes to me,                                                the ones with guns, violent tendencies and criminal histories                                               God, will I live my whole life without ever feeling safe?                                                    Mental abuse is physical abuse: you can see it, feel it, measure it in my body                       It is detrimental to my health and wellbeing                                                                                    I meditate on being held in a sphere of protective light                                                          and pray that I won’t have nightmares again tonight                                                      Healing the mind is not easy                                                                                                               I am humbled at how quickly I slip into depression and anxiety                                           my constant companions of which I am never truly free                                                       The next time my trauma gets triggered, which will happen soon                                      May I relax the grip of my fingers and remember that I am held in safety                      even when it feels impossible to believe                                                                                          I find peace in remembering that not even my trauma,                                                      which seems to be at the very core of me                                                                                      Is mine to keep                                                                                                                                   All things end eventually