Overlooked Notebook

I have beautiful notebooks. The have specialty papers on the outside, are often hand stitched with a variety of intricate bindings, and are filled with paper that can handle my pen or my paintbrush. One notebook in particular has seen the range of my emotional pendulum over the last six months. It has a thick brown cover reminiscent of bark grown over a wounded tree gash. I have been pouring myself into, into concentrated growth rings, every mark transcribed.

“I wish you would share stuff like that with me,” he said not too long ago.

I handed over my expression. I shared what would be open portraits of my nakedness. I revealed hopeless cries with poetic lilt. The pages were dense and painful and true. “Please understand that some of this may be difficult to see,” I added for his comfort. I am always adding some for of calming agent to my words for the comfort of others.

He will realize that I have drawn myself a lot, and that there is evident pain in how I present my body to the pages. He may wonder why I write so much about my lack of safety. It will likely come as a surprise to him despite my daily battle with being terrified. He will worry that some of the writing is darker and more hopelessly colored than makes people comfortable.

Or, this is actually the reality: he will forget to read it. He will put the book on his desk, then move it to a drawer when it is in the way. He will lose it entirely in the lists of things to do in a day. It will sit there, waiting to be seen, for a week, until I take it back. He will be mad at me later that I don’t share “enough.” He will write his own narrative in his own notebook. He will then be hopelessly fill with indignation when I don’t want to crack the spine to give it its open faced exposure to the air.

The notebook is mine. The expression is mine. I am not reserved about sharing it.

Fuck you for asking to see, so that you could make a demonstration of dismissing its beauty. I will sooner show an internet rando a completely nude photo of my body. I will smile straight into that camera and lift my eyes up like a good girl. Let anyone see through my eyes and into my cleavage…over my freckles and noting my scars…

How many will have the sense not to overlook the notebook?

Or are there more that will just set it aside and not look at the gift that is me….

I just want to be on the other side…

I am paralyzed with fear, uncertain obstacles in blindness

blindness with other senses impaired, nothing left to right my navigation

Which way to the other side? What good is the compass named kindness?

Kindness crippled and marred and scared with fearful indecision

I just want to be on the other side…

All information is good information, to further inform my choices

choices filled with pain and the information missing feels load bearing

How much on my head will fall if I fail to understand the voices?

Voices shouting, angry drooling, the ramifications so obviously glaring

I need to drag myself to the other side…

Oppression takes so many forms, masks and pretending I am okay

I am not okay today, but maybe I will be okay tomorrow

Tomorrow is hope and that hope I will borrow to survive this day

I need hope, faith, I will pull the credit, deep debt borrow

Please, let this be enough to get me to the other side…

Stand by my side, have my back, hold my hand

Lend me your stamina and your endurance

Be with me, one with me, my tribe, my band

I need help to make this journey, to take this chance

Hold me while I get to the other side…

I am going to falter and fall and lose my shit, lose it all

All feels lost in the rubble and I am flat under its weight, on the floor

Cannot see beyond glaucoma haze to the future clear crystal ball

Cannot open the window painted shut, cannot look at mirror’s broken cut, cannot crawl through the door

I need to be carried to the other side…

Today…I want to run and the plans are detailed and intense. Fight or flight impulse has me tearful as I talk to a lawyer and say I want nothing of what my marriage has to divide. I want absolutely nothing other than to survive this. What do people do who have no money or support systems? What on earth do people do? I had a one hour long consultation with a divorce attorney today…and my entire being is imploding. I am coping with stress by vomiting words. Then I will stuff it, work, go home, and pretend that I am fine.

I am not fine.

Conflicting emotions

I have written a lot of words about feels. Today, or rather yesterday, I was a war within myself. As I march along the path toward divorce and being an open self on the other side, I have milestones I must cross. I must get my spouse to “agree” and release me. I must develop a way to work with him through our many viewpoints that are different. I need not to own his reaction to me or my needs. We must talk to the kids about the relationship and its direction, and we must do those discussions on parallel pathway with parallel milestones to accomplish.

I know this to be the right path for me. I cannot shake the guilt that I am dragging my family through the path they wouldn’t choose. I feel selfish. I feel small. I feel weak. That person though, that feels those things…she is the one I once was. The person I am now, she needs to be seen.

All at once

I am child fearful and mother soothing.

I am the silence stationary and rage moving.

I am wife, mother, teacher, lover, friend.

I am labels for others that never end.

I am certain the path I travel is right.

I am grief consumed in every fight.

I am all things at once, all masks competing

I am moving toward me, myself, whole, completing.

All at once, raw beauty and hideous mess.

All at once, the truth undenied, open mouth will profess.

I am.

These days are filled with shocking grief and realization that even when right, there is pain. Even when certain, there are questions. Even when finishing, there are blockades. Even when all out of words, there are things that must be said. Even while shedding the fear, this is absolute panic. Even while surrounded by people, this is solitude.