If you lived here, you’d be home by now

Here is a statement I have spent a lot of time pondering lately. Since April I have found myself without a home, but in all honesty that reality stretches back months before.

The last time I remember feeling really truly “at home” was at my sub-leased apartment in Los Angeles. It was also the last time I lived alone. It’s coming up on a year since I left there to return here to my supposed support system.

As soon as I moved back to Michigan I was living in someone elses house. They did, at times, their best to make me feel it was my home as well. Sometimes it did, but not often. Mostly, they treated me like a troubled teen & they were my foster parents. The disturbing fact about this is that they are my age. I love how people use your mistakes to make themselves feel better about their empty or somehow unfulfilled lives. I’ve already told the story of how my time ended there, no need to dredge it back up again.

Then onto the farm, which I have also written about. This is the place where my life nearly ended, by my own choice. As I stared at that bottle of Oxys, thinking about how many it would take to get the job done right, I also thought about Heather & what not only losing me would do to her, but the knowledge that I used her pills to end my life. That is what kept me from going through with it. That was also the only real opportunity I’ve had to end my life by going to sleep & never waking up. What can I say, I’m a pussy. I can’t end my life in violence. I can’t slit my wrists. I can’t shoot myself. I can’t hang or drown myself. This might have something to do with the fact that I actually don’t want to die. I just want a way out of this sinkhole I’ve gotten myself stuck in.

There is no one to blame but me. Sure, people have wronged me & I them. That’s not the point. I’m in charge of me, or supposed to be anyway. I did this. I am the only one who can undo it. Now I just have to figure out how.

Right, I digress, back to the farm. I spent 2 months at this place & slid further into the darkness every day that I was there. It’s easy to do that there. It’s a sad place full of broken people going around in circles. It was the perfect place for me to lose myself. I just didn’t deal with any of my problems, dug the holes deeper & swallowed pills to numb any semblance of emotion. Every day was exactly the same. Sleep 12-14 hours, thanks to the pills. Otherwise I wouldn’t have slept at all. This is also the time that my eating habits became sporadic. I existed on Dr. Pepper & onion bagels.  I have never cared less about anything in my life as I did during that period. I would go 5-7 days without showering. What was the point? Then one day I had to come down to Detroit for an event I was supposed to work.

I needed somewhere to stay over the weekend, so I didn’t have to drive the 60 miles between the farm & Detroit. So I called a guy I used to be able to rely on. He abruptly blew me off, leaving me hanging & stuck. I laid in my car for an hour or so, contemplating whether or not I should contact my friend who lives down here. We have kept in touch, but had not seen much of each other in the years since I had moved away from Detroit. I felt a great deal of guilt as I text her, but the panic I felt at the thought of sleeping in my car in Detroit outweighed the worry of asking her. It was only for the weekend, so it couldn’t be that bad, right? WRONG!

2 days has turned into 2 months & I have become a blob of self-pity, depression & burden on my friends who are also going through very difficult transitional periods in their life, yet still manage to take care of their responsibilities on a daily basis. It fills me with shame & heightens the self-pity. I don’t stack up. I am the giant wart on the thumb of this house. I feel it every moment of every day, unless I have managed to find a way to keep myself busy, doing anything.

When I came here & the initial discussions were that I could stay here while I got myself together, that when I got some money coming in I would contribute. Due to my frozen state, that has yet to happen & I feel the time for me to leave is growing nearer by the minute, rather than the hour. This week is the 1st time I’ve really made a concerted effort to change my circumstances. I am doing it for me, first & foremost yes, but at the same time, because of what these beautiful women have done for & put up with from me, I want to do it for them as well. I want to see in me what they do….SO badly!

So, for today, as I sit on the back porch of this home I’ve grown to love, the only thing I can think to say is….If I lived here, I’d be home by now.

Stay tuned for tomorrows installment. Who knows, it may even be a vlog lol

❤ to all who follow & care!

You don’t know what it means to me, this growing group of people showing an interest in my disaster of a life.

Thank you

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Back to dailys

I’ve decided once again to make this a daily blog. It has helped me so much in the past & I want more than anything to snap out of & wake up from this mess I’ve made of my life once again.
A lil preview of tomorrows installment….
If you lived here, you’d be home by now

I’m also toying with the idea of occassional vlogs…just a thought

Until tomorrow folks…sweet dreams

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I’ve fallen & I can’t get up

Do you ever ask yourself how you happened to find yourself in a particular situation at some point during your life, good or bad? Of course you have, we all go through up s& downs, happy times & tragedies. It does seem, however, that some people are more prone to struggles, pain, sadness & failure, as if they are somehow cursed or followed by the proverbial dark cloud. That would be me.

As I type this, I find myself sitting on a bed with no frame, in the spare room of a wonderful & caring friend much younger than me, because I am once again homeless & hoping to start over. During the last 7 weeks I have found it difficult to do even the most basic of tasks, such as showering, brushing my teeth, changing my clothes, working my job or serious challenges such as finding the will to live another day. For the first time in my 42 years, I don’t care if I live or die. Considering the life I have led, the things I have endured, been witness to or caused myself, one would think that suicide had crossed my mind multiple times. The truth is, no matter how dark the skies, how difficult the challenge, until now, I always fought my way back up & started over again. But not this time. I don’t know if I have just finally hit the wall as far as having the strength to start over yet again or if this particular scenario & the outcome have damaged me deeper than any other period of failure in my life. I do know one thing….this time something has to change permanently, there is no alternative.

When I reach inside my memories, looking for a reason why I insist on living such a miserable, painful, mundane life; there are many signposts leading me to this exact moment.

But I keep running into the same answer….at the very back of my mind, locked behind layers of doors & brick walls, hanging on a wall….is a mirror. The reflection in the mirror is of me. I am the reason I have chosen to live this miserable, painful, mundane life.

Me!

Now what?

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“You Can’t Go Home Again”

In the Thomas Wolfe novel, he claims, in part, that “You can’t go back home to your family, back home to your childhood”. While we know that literally, one can go home again, but as I stated in an earlier post, the metaphorical idea holds true…one can never really go home again.

For the past decade I have held inside me a dream to buy back my Grandmothers home. When she passed in 2001, my father & step-mother decided to sell the house. This fact has bothered me since I found out about it. The main reasons for this being that my Grandmother had this house custom-built during a time when women were still not as likely to do such a thing, but she was never a “typical” woman. She worked very hard for everything she got in her life & I have always respected her for that. Sadly, I always held in my heart that she would allow me to live in the home & carry it on in our family once she passed. That was not the case.

I have to make it a point to admit that when my Grandma passed away, I was not there. The easy answer to why is that I wasn’t aware. The more complicated answer is that after so many decades of running into a brick wall with my family & relatives (mostly the relatives), I made the choice (at the wrong time, it turns out) to stop running at the wall, only to slam into it, hurting only myself. (or so I thought)

Madelyn was diagnosed with Lung Cancer in the fall of 2000 & passed away in April of 2001. Christmas was ALWAYS her favorite time of year. The weeks leading up to Christmas, she was recovering from surgery that removed her lung tumor & half of the lung it had invaded. She was planning a family Christmas party, including her sister (my Great-Aunt) her children & theirs as well. A few days before Christmas, as I was making my daily phone call to see if she needed me to stop by & bring her anything, she mentioned to me that she felt it would be best that I didn’t attend the Christmas party. I can admit now that I immediately saw red. Her reasoning was that she didn’t want any “trouble” this year & with the Belians attending, my presence would cause strife. I don’t think she had any idea how much that statement broke my heart. What did she mean, I shouldn’t come. I was her granddaughter, the child she had a HUGE hand in raising. Her direct bloodline. If anyone should be there, it was my dad & his wife, myself & my brother. Well, they were all there, but not the bad seed. That was my moment. The moment when I said “Enough!” I stopped that day. I stopped trying. I stopped putting myself out there, only to be ridiculed & seen as the person I was when I was young….irresponsible, disrespectful, distant, loud, etc. That is a person I would never outgrow in the eyes of many people I share a bloodline with, some of whom I don’t even really know. It’s amazing how those things can stick with you, but all the good, the growth, the change that you make is just plain invisible. (I did find out later that my Grandmother never told my father that she & I had that conversation, which only made him angrier at me, which in hindsight is understandable (“Same old Jennifer”)

I openly admit that not spending Christmas Eve with my Grandma was a terrible mistake on my part, regardless of my reasons. What I should have done was suck it up, bury my personal pain & go hang out with her. Because I chose not to, we never spoke again & 4 months later she was gone. I wasn’t able to be there to say goodbye, to help pick her burial outfit (because she took great pride in the way she appeared & dressed), to help care for her (even though I was told I couldn’t have handled it), to give back, even in the slightest bit, what she gave to me my entire life by being my ONE constant. The stable, responsible role model that I always knew she was, but could never quite live up to. It doesn’t mean that I didn’t love that woman more than anything or anyone in my life. It just means that once again I was selfish, consumed by hurt & bitter that I was always the bad seed, the black sheep…a role I never asked for, but surely earned.

Fast forward 11 years & a HUGE change in myself. I have made it an odd habit of driving by the house since I found out my gram passed. It became somewhat of an obsession to me. At times, mostly highly emotional times, I would find myself crying or screaming at the people living there to get outta my house. Not the healthiest behavior, I’m aware, but I never claimed to be entirely stable, emotionally or otherwise.

Recently, I’ve noticed there were no cars in the driveway. That was the immediate sign to me that they had moved out, obviously a case of foreclosure. Last week I typed the address into the local realtor website & sure enough, there were 9 pictures of my childhood home. I wrote them IMMEDIATELY, asking for a viewing. I was gonna get it back! I was so excited, making plans in my mind, blah, blah, blah. It was a very fun & exciting 24 hours….that is, until the real estate agent showed up to meet me.

As he unlocked the door, he turned and said to me “I have to tell you that this house is infested with black mold”. I said I knew & didn’t care & he opened the door. For a brief 5 seconds, I could smell her. Then the black mold stench took over. My mother had offered to go with me & at first I didn’t understand why. Maybe she wanted to see the house she spent much of her late teens & early twenties in. Later, at lunch, she told me the real reason, that she felt this was something I shouldn’t have to do alone. That was lovely, especially considering that we are not very close.

I walked through every room. I envisioned the furniture, the sound of the television or music on Christmas. I went into my old bedroom, that one felt weird, the bathroom I used to sit on the counter with my feet in the sink getting ready. Everything was the same. In the ten years these strangers lived there, they didn’t change a thing. They just let it rot. I hate them.

When I reached my grandmother’s bed/bath in the back of the house, the agent & my mom had already gone outside, unable to stand the smell of the mold. I just talked to her in there, seeing her putting on her makeup in her bathroom, standing in her walk-in closet choosing one of the 100’s of dress suits to wear that day. Inside her closet I began to cry. I cried because I miss her. I cried because I wasn’t there when she passed. I cried because I was still the same failure she hoped I wouldn’t be when she was alive. I cried because this was the last time I would ever be in this house.

In the end, I’m glad I went. I feel free of that dream now. I no longer drive by the house. I don’t think about it. I don’t fester over it. I don’t care.

Goodbye house

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Down On The Farm

Many people in the world make a choice to live their lives on a farm. Some people are born into it & the land goes back generations. Then there is the rare person who lands on two farms within a year, someone who never considered that life or saw themselves living such a rural life. I am that rare person. I type this to you while feeling very down on this farm.

The circumstances that landed me on the farm I am currently taking up space go back 30 years. At the age of 12 I began to truly rebel, as a direct result of the childhood I had endured up to that point. Sadly, as I inch ever closer to 42 by the day, I have still not managed to figure out how to leave the pain behind me & break the cycle of self-sabotage & ruin that I perfected decades ago.

It all started with a panic attack. Okay, that may not be entirely true. I had slipped up & made mistakes in the months preceding the morning I was frozen inside my car. Most, if not all, people make mistakes. Sadly, some of us have made so many that the people who are closest to them can’t take any more of the pain, the worry, the disappointment or the betrayal they feel. It’s understandable. There is no such thing as unconditional love when it comes to a screw up. Who could?

In a matter of four hours my life came crashing down around me on a Wednesday in April of this year. I experienced one of those panic attacks that keeps you from doing anything…calling someone for help, telling someone close to you that you were going through a trauma, answering the swarm of phone calls or texts messages that flooded in. All of these things, for reasons I still don’t understand, just made the anxiety worse. By the next day I was told I had nowhere to live. Day 2, they were keeping my dog for money owed, without even being given a choice. Also on that day, there was a phone call between my father & myself in which he told me he was done & that if I picked up my dog, it would be the worst thing in the world for her & that she deserved a better life than being stuck with me, especially since I am now homeless. I did call the police & made a report, so I couldn’t be accused of abandonment. They informed me that they would accompany me to the house where they would ask for the dog to be turned over, but then told me that there was a chance that they could refuse, causing me to have to file a court order to have her returned. Well, I don’t have the money to file a court order. My other choice is to file a report with the microchip company I am signed up with stating that she has been abducted. All I want is to have my dog returned to me, because she is the only thing I truly care about on this earth, with the exception of my 4 year old niece. I live for my dog. She is my baby, not my pet. She chose me, regardless of where or how we live. At the same time, I feel an incredible amount of guilt over the idea of tearing her away from the only life she’s known for the last 7 months, even if that life did include me until 6 weeks ago. I can’t even imagine the abandonment she must feel. Dogs do get separation anxiety, but her feelings were never taken into consideration. Damn, I really should have chosen not to respect their wishes that 2nd day to not go into their house without their being there & taken MY dog with ME. I have never been more shattered or more torn about anything in my life. Without her, I honestly don’t care about anything. I just don’t. Life means nothing. A future doesn’t matter. I have no ambition; even more than what has become normal for me. She is all that matters. Sure she’s probably loved & to a degree happy, but these people are kidding themselves if they think she isn’t hurting or that she doesn’t wish she was with me. Dogs know & feel FAR more than they are given credit for. She wants to be with the mommy she chose when she was 6 weeks old.

Now….well, now my life is empty. I have no job, no money, nowhere to go, no interest in caring if I’m going to be alone in this. I have even considered ending my life, but then I think of the people who were closest to me & have now chosen to take themselves out of my life. I truly believe that some of them would be pleased that I offed myself & some would just consider it another ploy on my part to make them feel bad. The funny thing to me about this entire situation is the fact that I have nothing negative or bad to say about a single one of these people. While the circumstances surrounding my return to Michigan are confusing to me & not necessarily in my best interest in the long term, they were very supportive of & good to me. They helped me in ways I didn’t deserve. I appreciate all they did for me. The only thing I have a problem with is when a person looks you in the face on multiple occasions & says that you ALWAYS have a home with them, up to the week before the events of that fateful day in April, only to turn in less than 24 hours & put you out without any notice whatsoever.

After weeks of soul searching, I have come to the conclusion that this is my fate, my payback for decades of bad behavior & disregard for the feelings of others. So, I’ll take the suffering. I will embrace my fate. Beyond that, I don’t know what will become of me & as I type this, I honestly don’t care. If Gypsy is not returned to her mother, what does it really matter?

So, that’s where I am today. I DO NOT want any of your sympathy. I DO NOT want help. I DO NOT want money. I just want to write. Do & think what you want of me, I honestly don’t give a shit anymore. I’ve been turned on, burned & betrayed by people who used to be friends, much the same way others feel I’ve done to them, during the unfolding of these events. All I want is for the pain to stop. I can only think of one little face that can heal the wounds….but I’m fairly certain the people that I would be fighting for her will tap their wealthy resources to bury me. Well….job well done, because you already did!

I love you more than life itself Gypsy Rae….& that is NOT bullshit!!!!

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Perception

“Distance should remain just as it is….distant!”

I stumbled across this quote as I tried to come up with one last idea to salvage a shattered relationship with someone who, though we share a partial bloodline, I barely know & vice versa. It reminded me that some scars are generations long & life is all about ones perception of any given situation.

So, I guess all that’s left to say on my part is this…”I am whatever you say I am”, to quote Eminem. It just seems to fit the circumstances I find myself in.

At least I find comfort in the realization that those who truly know me…good, bad & ugly…love me regardless of my faults & forgive me when I make mistakes.

That is love.

That is family…in my eyes, because sometimes blood does not a family make.

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Hamster Wheel

“Ambition is the last refuge of the failure.”
~Oscar Wilde

The words of Oscar Wilde seem to speak so directly to me in whatever situation I find myself in. Who knows, maybe if I spent more time writing down my own words I wouldn’t rely so heavily on others.

I’m sure it’s quite obvious to whoever is left reading this that I have been going yet ANOTHER major life change, several in fact. I realized yesterday that I haven’t written a new blog post since August. That’s a pretty big stretch for me & explains a lot about why I have been feeling stifled yet again. I seem to get so caught up in whatever bullshit drama I create for myself that I lose my creative drive & focus. I just give up, all over again…& again & again.

In the eyes of many, coming home to Detroit after not trying nearly enough in Los Angeles, I did not fail. Ask me if I feel that I failed & I will say yes. Why? Because I never really fought. I just gave in, crumbled, fell apart, gave in to the negative recordings in my head that tell me I have no creative talent, I will never amount to whatever pipe dream fantasy I have been living in for as long as I can remember, I am not the “Hollywood Type”, that I don’t deserve it, that I’m not good enough. Who knows what the truth is….surely not me. 

I was never one of those kids who was told I could do or be anything I wanted. Honestly, I wasn’t told much at all in the way of inspiration, support or guidance. I realize now that my parents weren’t equipped to tell themselves these things, let alone me. There is no fault here, even though for decades I set it squarely on their shoulders. When you stop to think about the damage we gain as broken children…yeah, our families & environment played a large part in shaping who we are today, but really…who carries on the negative reinforcement? We do. We tell ourselves we aren’t good enough. We set ourselves up to fail, repeatedly. We sabotage anything good that comes our way. We do all the real, long term damage. If we are all truly in control of our own destinies, then why are we all so busy blaming everyone & everything else for our problems, shortcomings & emotional damage?

So, here I sit, freezing my ass off, asking myself what I could have done differently to have endured Los Angeles. The answer is pretty simple…nothing. I wasn’t capable of saving myself from complete destruction. I have no idea how, not in that environment. It was the first time in my life where I found myself in a place & a situation that I couldn’t overcome, at least enough to move on to the next mistake. I even found myself convinced that if I didn’t get out of there when I did that I would die. I believe that to be true, but not necessarily in a literal sense, more metaphorically speaking. Who I am would have died, my faith in me, my fight, my essence, not my actual body….but who knows, maybe I was even closer to real death than I realized at the time. Getting jumped/robbed/beat up didn’t help my disposition much either. Funny thing about that entire experience & my eventual & inevitible exodus is that I miss that place every single day since I boarded the plane to leave. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll go back & try it all over again.

Now that I have been back in Detroit for a few months one thing is clear. From the first time I moved out of here, I have never really wanted to live here. I do love it & all the people who possess space in my heart, but the idea & practice of me living in this place feels like purgatory to my soul. I just don’t feel what I used to & so many others still do here. I just don’t care. I know now that there is a whole world out there to explore & experience. I am a restless soul & of all places to sit still, I never thought Detroit would be where I found myself once again. Sure, there are good & wonderful things that have happened since my most recent return, there always are. Sadly, the inevitable negatives at the very least equal the good, as they always do.

What can I say? I know my imagination & dreaming sharply contrast my ability & drive. Who doesn’t think they are meant for something greater than the life they are living? Please! I am pretty sure most people convince themselves of that just so they can survive their mundane existence. 

What am I really trying to say in this post? SO much….much more than I have the energy for & too many topics to post at once, sadly. If I continue, this will read like some simplistic high school diary post. 

Change is inevitible & a vital part of the life cycle…..but I’m tired.

 

In my next post….the 5lb puppy who awakened my heart & facing a possible cancer diagnosis.

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