Over You

I haven’t ever gotten over you,

You’re on my mind every one of these days,

And I have to wonder, will it always be this way?

It’s hard to imagine how your heart will be after breaking,

At the bottom it seems like you couldn’t ever escape despair,

You were everything to me,

You’re everything to me,

All I think about is what if, what if, what if,

Are you thinking about me to?

You’re the one that got away,

It’s hard to imagine a day when,

You won’t occupy my every thought,

When you’re not weighing on my heart,

Since I met you, you occupy my very essence,

Living rent free in my body and never having signed a contract

Part of me wonders if I can ever be the one,

Who occupies you every thought, your every day,

Do you feel as sad and desparate as I do, when you think about not being together?

I love you, my everything,

Please always stay true

Loneliness

Loneliness, my companion,

I’ve always known you.

In my shadow you walk,

In my bed you crawl,

Your hand entangles mine everywhere I go,

Loneliness you’re a home I have always known

Will it get better? Will you go away?

Or have I some fatal flaw that always makes you stay

I cry out to God, what is wrong with me now?

But you’re the only friend that He will allow

Am I paying for the sins for some lifetime past?

Will it be forever that the loneliness lasts?

I don’t ask for much, I just ask for some,

Something to tell me what is to be done

Loneliness, I know you

As the lines of my palm,

Like the smell of my home,

As the night knows the dawn

Why is it my fate to be your acquaintance

What Have I Been Up To?

I hope everyone is staying safe and well in this time of quarantine. In addition to staying home and continuing my work full-time, I have recently put my development of a poetry collection on hold to write a story that has been pressing on me for some time. It is my first attempt in several years of any form of long writing and is so far a mystery/crime novel that takes place in Los Angeles County.

All positive thoughts, prayers, and energies are welcome at this time. I hope you are able to continue your creative ways in these confusing times,
Much love, -CC

Something We’ll Never Know

When your name creeps up in conversation,

Or sometimes on my phone,

My breath catches in my chest,

Despite all my efforts to keep you away,

Despite all our efforts to keep emotion out of it,

Because this is supposed to just be our bodies

I thought I was the type of person who could just be a body,

If only for a little while,

It would just be my body, your body

But then there would be those little moments afterwards

Me laying there, you’re laying there

All is at peace,

And perhaps my body confuses you for the reason for peace,

Then the thought of you gets my head spinning

I wonder how we get to this point in life,

Afraid to say what we want to say,

Afraid of emotional connection, only able to give physical

My body, your body, become our bodies, our moment

Do we ever go back to a safe place when we’re not afraid to be vulnerable?

What beautiful love we’d miss out on if we choose to never know,

But I won’t ask you to know, so you’ll never tell me

Someday

Someday I’ll be brave enough, 

To let those dreams roam, 

To let flowers bloom from my chest, 

Bursting skyward towards a warm sunshine

It is a process, 

I am growing, learning, trying, 

To undo the damage done to me, 

Broken but I still grow, 

Sometimes my brother tells me that a broken clock is correct, 

At least twice a day, 

Whatever that means, 

We’re damaged but we still grow. 

My favorite songs says we will be brave enough to carry on, 

Despite all the circumstances of our lives, 

We will carry one, 

Not I, but We

I am in the process of developing my team, 

Learning to choose safe people to gather around me

He sings we will not be afraid to keep living, 

But I am so afraid, 

Yet I will keep on living, 

I think to be alive is the feel all things, 

The cacophony of depression, the riptides of anxiety,

Tornadoes that capture you in the manic-depressive spirals,

Unconditional love, irrevocable heartache,

In so many ways, to fear is to be alive

I wonder if seeds know, 

What beautiful flowers they will become, 

How strong their bark may grow, 

How many souls they would nourish one day, 

Such little things can prosper to greatness when the environment is right

Someday we may discover the person we were meant to be, 

How our souls used to be childlike, 

Before we grew up and life become messy, 

Before we became victim to other hurting souls, 

Before we became torn up, 

Return to the version of ourselves that existed, 

When we were safe within ourselves, 

And flowers grew all around us  

The Lover

Where are you now,

Sweet lover of mine,

Are you home under the covers,

Your chest slowly rising and falling,

Dreaming of an alternate divine,

What picturesque visions flow through your mind

After the day is finished

Do you think of me?

When your mind is free?

As I think of you,

Ever hour of mine

Oh what would I be if I didn’t spend every moment aching for your soul

Under your control, yet away from your touch

How does one human have this much control over another?

What part of our brain compels us to such foolish behavior?

My obsessive brain is wasting away

Ticking away thoughts of some other being,

Peacefully sleeping in another bed

The Capacity to Say The Words Unsaid

If I gave myself the capacity,

To say all those things running through my veins,

Would my mouth move in a coherent solidarity,

Or would I once again swallow my words, to keep swimming through my body

Oh what would I be if I allowed myself to say begin again

If I could grow myself again,

I would grow a bigger mouth,

So my words could come booming out of me,

No longer a silent fear

and I would grow my heart like an English garden,

letting the greenery cover every surface,

Much like a natural blanket, that knows no bounds or ribs

Little buds in every direction.

I would tell you that I love you, how you’re dear to me,

Never fearing an absence of reciprocation,

For my English garden sustains me,

And my new mouth knows no fears

And I would say to myself it’s okay to begin again

Confronting the empty, other half of my bed.

It’s Tuesday night, about 6:45 PM. I’m avoiding doing anything important or significant. Why do I feel such tremendous pressure to capitalize every moment of my waking day? Yeah, that’s a toxic habit. And now I’m thinking about all my other toxic habits, which is what I was actually avoiding if I’m going to be completely honest. You see, what happens when I get home from work is I am completely alone. I spend all day surrounded by people, talking, engaging the world around me. But after I park the car and put my apartment key in the front door, I unlock a dark, void space, where the depression and anxiety rule me.

I begin thinking about things that I can avoid in the day time. I avoid thinking about the break up, I avoid talking about my new dating adventures, the night school homework I haven’t looked at yet. But when I am home these things occupy my mind completely. Then I start the drinking, which I am trying to defend to myself but I am running out of valid excuses and reasons. Isn’t that one of the signs of being an alcoholic? That you become defensive about your drinking. Well, this can’t come as too much of a shock to anyone that I’ve found a legal way to slowly kill myself every evening.

Sometimes the little apartment starts to feel too big and overwhelming, so I’ll lock myself in the bathroom for a little while. I may run a bath and sit in the water, or I may just sit on the edge of the tub and drag one of my feet back and forth on the bath mat, enjoying the soft sensation of the movement. I try one of the breathing exercises that I teach my clients every day in our scheduled sessions. The exercises are helpful, but do my clients know that I need them too? Do they know that when I talk about trauma and coping exercises, that I’m actually whispering little secrets and insider trades that I learned when I was there? In a way, I’m still there. I carry that place everywhere I go, and when that place gets to big for me to carry I go and lock myself in the bathroom for a little while and I breathe.

Then I start wondering if anyone knows how much help I need. My work phone dings away all day, but my personal phone is a silent, cold brick in my pocket. I check it again. It’s after 7 now, and still there are no messages except from some guys online telling me I’m beautiful, hoping to get sex from me. It would be nice to invite someone over, I think. I would love to have sex and feel the pleasure of that again. But I have to laugh at their effort, because in some ways they are innocent and mean well, and part of me wants to message back and honest and heartfelt response, something like:

‘Hey, thanks for the compliment. We should hang out later, if you want. You can come over to my place–I don’t have any roommates. Oh, you think I’m sexy? Gee, thanks, that really means a lot to me, because I just depression-binged half a pizza, and now my belly is hanging out of my pants because I can’t really breathe if I kept it all tucked in. If you’re still interested in me after knowing that, I’ll probably have to disclose a couple other things too. I haven’t really been to the gym in a while so I’m not looking my best. Also, my depression medication sometimes makes it really hard to orgasm so if that doesn’t happen, it might not be personal. I haven’t cleaned or done dishes in several days because my anxiety has woken me up in the middle of the night for the past few weeks and then when I get home after work I am exhausted and usually just lay on the couch, lock myself in the bathroom, or take a nap. And just a heads up, after we have sex I’ll probably ask you to leave because I’ll most likely want to start crying because I haven’t really dealt with the end of my most recent relationship yet.’

And if I sent this, I would just laugh and laugh, and maybe text it over to my best friend because that’s our sense of humor. Maybe that’s how I should start navigating the world, being completely and brutally honest at all hours of the day. Maybe I’ll try that, or follow up to the ‘hey cutie what you doin tonight?’ message with, ‘Hey, sorry I’m not in the mood tn because I had a client spend a two hour session recalling all the horrific sexual abuse she went through as a child and that’s kinda in my head right now so I’m totally not in the mood for anything sexual but I’ll hit you up when I feel better’.

This is the reality of my day and I absolutely love my job. But maybe I’m not being honest about how it affects me, because some days I am so burdened carrying other peoples pains and damages that I cancel plans so I can process some of this, and text my friends that ‘I have a migraine’ or ‘probably the flu or something’. Or my favorite ‘sorry, I didn’t get that text where you invited me out. My phone’s been acting crazy!’ because like, imagine if cell phones didn’t work as often as we make excuses about it? There would be an epidemic and all this money being invested into cell phone repair campaigns or something. It’s such a bullshit excuse that we keep using and we keep accepting.

At some point, I start to feel okay enough to leave the bathroom, and I may work on my laptop at the kitchen table or snuggle up on the couch and watch something on TV. And I’ll secretly try to fall asleep in the living room so I can avoid having to lay in my bedroom and confront the empty side of the bed. There’s my sacred space laying in the closest proximity to the side I have now deemed ‘asshole territory’ because that’s the side where assholes used to sleep. So every time I go to lay down in bed, I have to silently unpack the fact that I no longer sleep next to my best friend and I have to avoid thinking about why that is.

Maybe it’s because I would go to work every day and spend hours listening to others that afterwards I didn’t have the energy to listen to you, to give you the time and attention you needed. No, no– I know that’s not true. That’s where the emotional abuse still lingers, when I try to scramble reasons that all this is my fault and it’s not anyone’s fault but yours. You did not love me and that’s the truth of it all. You. Did. Not. Love. Me. It’s like a little prayer I have to say to myself over and over and over again like I’m trying to rip off a band-aid or something and it hurts but I know I need to do it. By this time, it’s about 9:00, and I want to go to sleep. So I go in my room, and get under the sheets, and occupy a space right next to where you spent two years never loving me. You would lean over, kiss me, and tell me a lie and I spent two years believing you.

And now I am a young professional in my dream career, living in a beautiful city, with a beautiful apartment, and outside there is a beautiful summer exploding with life and activities, and at 9:12 PM on a Tuesday in the middle of a chapter of my life I spent years dreaming of, I am laying on strictly the left side of a bed, crying into an already tear-stained pillow, having to confront the other, empty side of my bed and wondering why some new guy hasn’t texted me back. I kinda thought my 20’s would be a little better than this.

How It Is To Know I’m Alive

Painting by Morgan Broker
https://pixels.com/featured/symphony-orchestra-morgan-broker.html

How it is to know I’m alive,

Is it the air that moves in and out of me?

Or is it a force much greater?

Something I cannot yet understand?

What are all the things that make me human?

Could it be the songs I sing in the morning,

The off-pitch flowing with the breeze,

Or is it something so much deeper,

This life force beating within me.

I feel this fire deep within and it comes alive before me,

The essence of my soul unfolds both on paper and all around me,

And I think of that poem again and again,

‘Do I Dare and Do I Dare?’

Do I dare to be the human me,

Who often falls so short and fails,
And sits in a healing room day after day chanting the affirmations of change,

Just to flee home and drain the wine,

And lay on the bathroom floor unable to catch my breath from crying

Do I dare admit that some days I lay in bed for 45 minutes,

Waiting for the medication to kick in so I can gather the energy to stand

Am I human when someone asks how I am,

And I lie and say I’m doing great,

When some days all I can think about is the relief I would feel to take the blade to my skin again, like I once did every day

Am I human when I embrace my darkest moments and acknowledge the damage I am capable of?

Or am I human when I am a thoughtful daughter, visiting home and calling to check in,

Or when I go to dinner with friends and light up the room with my smile and laughter,

Am I human when I am a shoulder to cry on, a woman to embrace,

A compassionate therapist making a positive impact,

Am I human when I am playful, when I giggle, when I go out of my way to make others laugh,

Am I human when I care too much, give too much away, and cry during sappy commercials?

When I make plans for the future, and hope for the best,

When I plant flowers, and pray for sunny days

When I do all these things is to know I’m alive,

Because I am both all my light and all my darkness, all at once.

Like some kind of twisted symphony,

Where the woodwinds breathe a soothing melody while the brass and percussion rage like a storm of organized chaos,

Yet the song of me comes together somehow,

And the conductor standing firm in the center of me continues directing our rhythm

In a ballad titled ‘How It Is To Know I’m Alive’.

Before I Leave In The Morning

Image result for painting couple
Painting by Sanda Grlić
https://www.saatchiart.com/art/Painting-blue-and-red-couple/965157/3424085/view

Before I leave in the morning,

I tend to hold you close,

Trying to lengthen every second that I have been gifted with you,

Hoping to lay there beside you forever,

Kissing your shoulders, your chest, your hands

For this is what I was created to do

You’ve never been one to lay in bed, to hit snooze on the clock beside you,

So you’re always trying to get up, to start your day

To leave me laying there, craving more

Wearing your t-shirt, moving over to your side to lay in the warmth you abandoned,

And you get in the shower, and the rainfall noise sings me right back to sleep

Until you interrupt my lullaby, and rock me awake and tell me that it’s my turn to wake up

But how could I want to? Because as soon as my feet hit the floor, our little fantasy is disturbed by the demands of the world, our work, our lives

And once we’re both dressed, you’re hurrying out the door,

Kissing my forehead in the driveway and telling me to travel safe

And I can’t move my feet forward to leave because I have always hated saying goodbye,

And you know this, and reassure me that you’ll see me some day soon,

But I’ll spend the whole day thinking about a time before I left in the morning

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