Comparing answers from 2010 and 2014 “My Why”
FOUND AN OLD NOTE TODAY…
So I came across this folded up, wrinkled, worn piece of notebook paper in an old purse of mine that I used before and during my stays in the mental hospital. I recognize my scribbling and style, but I do not have any recollection of writing this nor where the questions came from. So I think it’s pretty neat that way, so I’m sharing it, even if I’m just sharing it with me. That’s what this is for I guess. Kinda.
- What motivates me?
2010: Certain people outside of me (yes thats what it says…creeps me out) ANYWAY like Emma. I want to show her–teach her–that I can and will take care of myself and for myself too–my inner passion and drive motivates me to want to live the hell out of my life. I don’t/can’t live in a world I create within my stories or within my fears and worries. I want to shine again, and believe that I can. All of my mistakes.
2014: wanting to live the hell out of this life; wanting the best for Emma–that’s motivation all in itself.
- What interests me?
2010: …I don’t know yet…educating myself, learning to be prepared but not too much, learning to accept and live for the now, learn to relax. Get back to my art, photography, writing (get back to the fiction for a break), music. The art of friendship–that interests me.
2014: Writing poetry, essay, and memoir, I like sociology, psychology/abnormal psychology, Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity–well I’m curious about all religions/faiths. I love watching people and slowly taking them in, their judgments and then their changes. I love the smell of fresh snow in the morning before the world wakes up and the sky is dark. I love dreaming about the characters in my stories/memoir-to-be. I love to imagine how it’ll feel when I finish it. I know I will, unless there’s some freak accident, which of course is likely. I love watching my little child blossom and grow and become. I love to give her what she needs and tear myself down when I am not. MUSIC, MUSIC, MUSIC. From Ali Farka Toure w/ Ry Cooder to David Gray to Paolo Nutini to Hootie to Joni Mitchell to Michael Jackson to Rachmaninoff. I love most all types except pop and most country. Eh.
- What would I do more if I could?
2010: Socialize. Quit breaking my friendships/connections. Visit. Really talk to grandpa—or just listen. Do something crazy with him. Enter into things–social or physical. Get the HELL OUTA THE HOUSE and find life out there that I want to be a part of! Make myself a part of!
2014: I’d travel and venture out, learn how to snowboard and surf and take my girl rock climbing. I’m very antisocial and I want to change everything about that.
- What do I want?
2010: The routine of something that’s important to me. i want curiosity–not fear. I want to master these mental disorders (only one is genetic, so the rest i stand a chance ) and by master I mean know my head inside-out and know my spirit–insdie-out. I want to handle it the way a golfer molds his style to the wind. Why is that my image in my head? I want to feel free and good when I’m doing well, and prepared and proud when I am not. Action. I want to stop crying. I want to be myself. I want to create that self fresh and old. Every day. And know who she is. I want to be able to work without buckling and panicking or avoiding. Face the day. Face the day. Face the day. And then, seize it. Bipolar allows for such great moments only temporarily. But they do come.
2014: I want to be a good, encouraging, freeing mother–I want her to stand on her own two feet because she figured out how to. I want to write my story. I want to write my story. I want to write my story. And I want a best friend again.
- What do I care about? or what did I care about before my illness(es)?
2010: Finding out who I was. Am. Believing I’m not this girl that I totally fucked up because of stupid choices (i don’t believe that anymore–). I care about my baby girl–how she sees me but more importantly, how I’m teaching her to see herself. She’s teaching me, not the other way around. How does she see herself? I care about my fiance, I care that I don’t always show my love for him. I have such a hard time showing love to him–him most of all–and yet i’ve allowed for him to know me the most intimately somehow. There are no secrets, he sees right through that crap. And he loves me, loves me so well. How to show it? How to show a lover love when the very nature of your intimacy is unrecognizably scarred. I don’t care it’s true. How to let him in…now that’s a challenge. God Bless Psychotherapy.
2014: Before I got sick I was just learning who I was, and even that was late. I didn’t care about myself which meant I wasn’t being there for my daughter, teaching her self-love. Before it all began (in my 20s, before I had my girl) I didn’t care about a single thing except where I was going to find the next high, the next kick, the next race, the next man, the next thrill. I feel like I missed out on almost a decade of caring so I’m trying to make up for that. There’s lots of me to care about.
- Where do I want my life to go?
2010: Forward. Not time-wise wither. Forward with intention and openness; awareness; love. Bravely, but no hero, no spokesperson. Just another person in this great big old world, smelling flowers and looking through eyes that don’t judge. Careful and carefree. Through the fuckn’ moon.
2014: I’d be happy with something–anything. I want to get Emma off into her own life as she grows up, and I want to nourish my own, writing and sharing and going to the poetry readings the next town over. I’ve had about two dozen publications, and none of it matters to me–each thing I write is one stepping stone to the shore–to where my big story in my heart is. I have to follow this. I don’t want to most of the time, but it’s like a pain that follows me around all day and keeps me up at night.
- What brings me joy?
2010: Emma. Writing. Music. Really really playing with Emma–when we play pretend. And how she opens up to me and we belong together in the magical land of cobblers and bakers and princesses and christmas lights and the talking ladybugs and the forever forest.
My huge family. Wonderful family on all sides. Justin. Family and love. Someone saying “I’m here”, someone reading my blogs and understanding. So wonderful to see them all rooting for me. Proud of me.
2014: That’s easy. There are two things. My girl, and writing. Oh and Mike and my sisters.
- What are my dreams and hopes?
2010: To learn to live with all this and to really really live. To wake up. To write from my soul. To share my soul. To get it out, like it’s my last demon that has to has to has to go down on the page for good. For once and for all.
To give love and accept it right back. To take care of myself and my loved ones. To keep my focus on MENTAL WELLNESS, not illness.
I WANT TO BE PROUD OF MYSELF. IN THAT OLD, SILENT KIND OF WAY.
I want to write that book, that one book, no one’s ever written and it has to be pitiless and brave and about love and strength. It’s not about being mentally ill or mentally anything. It’s with the other part of our body that leads us–our spirits.
“I never saw a wild thing feel sorry for itself.” –DH Lawrence But then I think what if mental illness will be another Robin Williams scenario–the truth of it, the hardness of it, is that it’s tough to beat. And that’s the problem right there–we’re under the assumption that it’s something to beat instead of learning to live with. “Like Hemingway, some artists can’t break free of the pain that made them creators in the first place.” It’s a matter of the fight in you, and using that fight to feed your soul.