Dandelion and Rose

I have seen this meme several times over the past through months.  At one point, I tried to grow roses with little success so I found it amusing from that perspective.

This is life.  We consider roses things of beauty and weeds, like dandelion, as ugly or intrusive.  We fight a constant war against weeds. It takes more effort to keep things of beauty alive in this world.  It’s much easier for the ugly to win.  

But, there is beauty in dandelions.  They’re tough.  They keep coming back.  They’re actually a food.  Watching the dandelions’ puff fly away is beauty in itself.  Perhaps, we can turn “ugly” into “beauty” by changing perspectives.

To quote the band Whitesnake “Every rose has its thorns.”  Beautiful, yes.  But able to draw blood if held in the wrong way.  There is “ugliness” in a rose.  

We are all a mix of ugly and beautiful.   Of good and evil.  Feed the roses but build the resiliency of the dandelion.

Step by Step

It’s been a horrible week for me.  I’m finally getting back to my new normal- whatever that is.  

It reminded me of a hole of mud. I’d try to get traction only to slip down again, flailing in the mud at the bottom.  It took so much energy to keep climbing.

I keep thinking that I should be “immune” to this level of depression- the suicidal thoughts, the sleepless nights.  Aren’t I lucky?  Brain injury, depression, and PTSD.  The PTSD has nothing to do with the brain injury- it’s a seriously messed up situation. 

What kills me; at one point I was a good Clinical Social Worker.  Now, nope.  Between the effects of brain injury and the other stuff, I can’t do that anymore.  It wouldn’t be good for my clients or me.  I had the skills to help others climb out their holes.  I can’t do it for myself.  So strange.  It’s true though.  You really don’t see your own problems clearly.  This shit messes with your mind.  Nothing is clear when you’re trapped in the mud. 

I’m slowly stepping  away from the hole now.  

What kept me going this last week ?  I couldn’t hurt Brighid or Kaliyah. I didn’t want them in rescues or the Humsne Society.  And I wasn’t going to kill them.  I have a responsibility to them.  Alive in part because of a cat and ferret.

My family was part of why.  What I said about how that shit messes with your mind.  A part of me figured they’d just “get over it.”  I’m just a burden on them.  The small part still fighting knew it wasn’t true.

The final reason: 22 veterans a day kill themselves.  In the back of my head was them. And the Soldiers of my old unit.  I had to retire.  That doesn’t mean my sense of responsibility and loyalty is gone.  I don’t want to send the message that it’s ok.  

It’s funny what kept me going.  It was a close thing.  The only part of the plan I didn’t have figured was my fur kids.  

This is sadly funny.  I contacted the chat option of the National Suicide Hotline in the middle of the night.  Long story short: the guy told me to go sleep it off.    I’d feel better the next morning if I slept.  Hey, motherfucker… Would I be in chat in the middle of the night if I could sleep?  And they wonder why there’s 22 veteran suicides a month.  I sort of found it funny after the fact but it’s still alarming.

I ended up going for a run at 2:45 in the morning.   I wore reflective gear.  Operant conditioning in action.  It was still ironic. 

I spent a lot of time last week being physically active.  It was the only thing that made me feel better at all.

I isolate when my head gets that way.  After all, no one wants to be around that shit.   That’s what made the hotline response so messed up.  The only two places/ people who knew what was going on was the hotline and the social worker at the Vet Center.  

But, yesterday and today, I’m climbing out of the hole.  

Sometimes it’s Not Screaming

Sometimes ¬†they’re silent

Voices silenced by pain and

Suffering.  Scream out!

Hear the loud silence

The voices of the damned to

Loneliness and pain.
It can be too much

Dreaming of never ending sleep

But staying awake