One Day at a time..

Dear Heroin:

I wrote a letter similar to this once, to cancer, you heroin are the other enemy in my life. Both you and cancer took a foothold and we will never be free of you or the hideous damage you have caused our family.

Heroin, you have one of my sons as your hostage and I want you to let him free. The repercussions have taken their tole on all of us, for years and we are tired and ready to give up fighting you. This last week heroin, you really did a number on us. The desperation and mindlessness you cause created a hellish nightmare from which we are trying to recover from. While we move on, your control gets stronger and stronger breaking my family into pieces that are so mishapen they will never be able to fit together again.

You lie heroin.

You make endless false promises heroin.

You steal, you use, you take advantage.

You do whatever you need to do to stay in charge, heroin.

You have torn a family to shreds, heroin and I hate you.

There will be an end and I sit, with bile rising into my throat, waiting and waiting, not knowing what that end will be. I have nothing left to fight you with heroin, though I can not claim you the winner because I am stupid and still hold out hope that you can be beaten by the one who needs to fight you now.

I leave you now with the clock ticking ever so slowly, closing my eyes, my ears, my mouth, my mind from the horror of you and what you might do next.

Lion

Posted: December 15, 2020 in Uncategorized

Lion*
By Joanne M. Firth
12/11/2020
Coventry CT

I used to be a lion
Roaring fiercely
Growling at boundaries
Mane flowing loosely


Then the white dove of change
Came knocking
Barreling through my door
Taking full advantage of my limitless soul


Time stopped
As I pushed the unwelcomed
intruder out past my threshold


The deepest breath of rebirth
Filled my dim self up once again


The lion lives on
With a quieter roar
A softer growl
A shorter mane
For now
Subject to change

Coventry CT

12/11/2020

*Original content.
Read, share but please don’t steal it. Thanks

Posted: December 13, 2020 in Uncategorized

Value of a dog~*~is beyond  earthy treasure~*~his life lived to love #Haiku

Posted: December 13, 2020 in Uncategorized

Curiosity lingers

Long after the quiet sets in

Craving conversation

About anything

Music, poetry, the weather

*****

Bouncing back

Just in time

For another round

Nothing

In between

To be me again

*****

The mirror is still friendly

When I smile

*****

I can’t begin again

Until I reciprocate

In some large way

For all the good

For all the kindness

For all the love

For all the people who care and worry

There are not enough “thank yous”

Nor even words

To express gratitude

Of this magnitude

*****

Rally and commence

My heart is full

My mirror reflects

A genuine smile

Underneath bright

Inquisitive eyes

*****

I think of rollercoasters

Highs and lows

Rapid excelleration

Rapid decelleraton

Mostly about exiting

Handing back my ticket

Throwing back my ticket

Running down the ramp

Fingers gliding on the rail

Not looking back

*******

If words never came near me again

I would not mind

I would not care or wonder

There is nothing from here

I wish to record

Or document

Or think about

*******

Lull

Posted: December 13, 2020 in Uncategorized

Drama. Drama and crisis, two of my least favorite things. It’s hard to be embroiled in the middle of a crisis, those intense hours, days of panic. Receiving information you were not expecting. I find the older I get, the better able I am to handle a large crisis. Experience maybe. Wiser maybe. Or maybe I don’t have the stamina I used to to ride out a crisis. It is exhausting. The crisis I’ve been through and am not completely finished with yet had to do with one of my children. My oldest son. My first born. My twin soul.

Sitting here on my comfortable love seat, looking to see exactly how many hours are left to this past week, I find myself in a lull. My son is getting the care he needs from medical people, my youngest son is home watching tv, and my daughter is at her home, safe and healthy. As a mom, this is all I need right now. I’m enjoying this time of peace and relaxation after trauma and crisis. The old me still would have been in crisis mode, 4 days later. I’m not the old me. I’m tired and need to pull back from my children for a few hours. The old me also would have felt selfish for taking this time, sitting with a candle going. Letting my body and mind heal from the fast pace it has been in. The old me would still me in motion, panicked, trying to determine outcomes or nervously busy with ordinary task. Running myself even further down. My mind would be spinning, not focusing on anything I’m actually trying to do. Instead, I have been able to sort through details of what I need to do and when I need to do them. They certainly can not all be done at once. There are a hundred things I could be doing, anxiously, yet I’m not. Over the years, after many different kinds of hectic and dramatic situations, I’ve learned a little bit about pulling out to reserve energy and pace myself so that I can be strong for as long as I need to be. In my case, that’s always.

The candle I have burning smells like roses, the flame flickering in the dark room. My dog is breathing and I can hear the hot tub motor doing what it does. I”m in the moment right now, aware of what is going on around me. A peaceful lull, taking in and enjoying my quiet surroundings. This moment could end any second. My husband or youngest son needing something. A pet needing something that would require me to get up from a comfortable spot when I don’t feel like it. After the week I’ve had and the life I’ve had I don’t want to get up for any reason. I need to be selfish for a little while and rest.

Alone-aphobia

Posted: December 13, 2020 in Uncategorized

Getting to the end of radiation treatment has left me feeling unsettled. In many ways, I’ve enjoyed getting out every day, like I used to when I went to work. Putting effort into my apearance, picking out something nice to wear from my casual, meager wardrobe. Applying makeup, being patient while my eyebrows and eyelashes grew back. They have now. My hair is growing out too. It is very thick and dark, about an inch long, curly with grey mixed in. The wigs sit in my closet now, as I have enjoyed wearing hats out in public. Hats are fun and much less itchy and distracting as wigs. I’ve enjoyed having somewhere to go each day, Monday through Friday, a routine that has kept me busy and occupied. It has created a momentum in my life again, because for me once I am dressed and ready for the day, I keep going and use that momentum to remain busy and occupied. The unsettled feeling has much to do with falling back into my old habits. Sleeping very late, sitting around in my pajamas, sometimes all day and not getting out enough, if at all. The daily treatments, while seeming confining at the onset, have done wonders in correcting some old, bad habits. It has been pleasant to see people every day. To say hello, smile, or have a laugh with. People who greet me pleasantly and seem happy to see me. I will miss that.

I remember being so fearful about making the commitment to have the radiation treatments. I didn’t think I would be able to get up and out there every day. I even went as far as thinking I would be so tired or ill that I would have to go in my pajamas. That’s how shut-in I had gotten myself. Going out had become a process that created anxiety within me. Even going out for milk or bread was enough for me to agonize over. Continually making excuses to stay home, day after day. While I don’t think I had a full-blown case of agoraphobia, a touch perhaps, I do think I had lost my confidence and had very deep feelings that I simply did not look good enough to go out in public. Looking the mirror horrified me. I felt too fat, too wrinkled, and too old for anyone to see me. Being a vain person, I was extremely unhappy with my appearance to the point of being self conscious when I actually did go out. The days of strutting into my office, feeling pretty, smart, and successful, were long gone. I had turned into a frightened old woman, afraid to be seen. The appointments prior to radiation treatments were a great effort, always that nagging anxiety present as I got ready to leave the house. Finally, after two months of a new, healthy routine, it feels great to go out every day. The negative feelings have dissipated. Confidence in my self and my appearance have returned. Despite being a schedule that revolves around cancer treatment, it has become a schedule that returned me to how I once was.

What I Try To Bring

Posted: December 13, 2020 in Uncategorized

To the party

To the table

To the gathering

Whenever I’m able

I try to bring

The icing on the cake

The photograph without a blur

The story with the happy ending

The good parts

The smile

*****

All the rest

I leave behind

To fade and forget

To hide and sweep away

It’s heavy

And cumbersome

As burdens can be

*****

To the fiesta

The celebration

The get together

What I will try to bring

Is the calm behind the storm

The laughter from deep inside

The light to fade the darkness

The best parts

The smile

******

So don’t be afraid

To have me around

To let me in

 

 

 

This Is The Place

Posted: December 13, 2020 in Uncategorized

Where do we go

In the digital space

To be yourself

And have your place

*****

Sharing with family

Friends and relations

Life’s daily dose

And profound revelations

*****

Different I am

Each day that passes

Reflection of others

Through pink shaded glasses

*****

Currently composed

After feeling so bleak

Tears have tumbled

Down an autumn blushed cheek

*****

Again I rise

Ready to look

Ready to see

Closing the book

*****

I will tuck this away

And not let it linger

Amends and forgiveness

At the tip of my finger

*****

That is the story

This is the place

May 23, 2012

Coventry CT

Out Of Focus

Posted: December 13, 2020 in Uncategorized

For so long

I’ve held the camera

Looking through the lens

At the lives of my children

And my family

Studying their faces

Clicking snapshots of their triumps

Putting the camera down

During their falls

Holding them

Comforting them

Encouraging them

Until they are back up and running

I grab the camera

And there they are

Doing the things they do

Making me proud

The pictures are so good

I can’t stop taking them

I can’t stop watching them

Suddenly

The camera gets heavy

The batteries are dying

The camera falls from my hands

And the lens is pointing at me

The shutter is filled with nothing

But grey

And still

I wonder what I am suppose to do next

Do I change the batteries

Do I buy a new camera

Life is racing by

And I’m not capturing it

I’m not watching it

I’m not seeing it

A lost oasis of precious moments

Startled and stunned

I look down at the broken camera

I look into the lens

I see the reflection

The decades have distorted

The drained batteries

And broken camera

Have one more picture

To take

So I look into that lens

With my best smile

And in a second

When I am ready to look

Ready to see

I realize

It is not grey

And it is not still

It is colorful

And vibrant

And beautiful

And has been

The whole time

For so long

I’ve held the camera

Looking through the lens

At everyone elses lives

My own pictures

Got out of focus

It’s time to make adjustments

To buy a new camera

To point it in all directions

Including my own

December 8, 2013

Coventry

Goodbye “Why?”

Posted: December 13, 2020 in Uncategorized

It was Spring. I think. It was 1987. I know. My dad, took a fall. We knew he wasn’t well because for a year, he was losing weight. Getting thinner and thinner. Quieter and quieter. I, his youngest, only wanted to save him, yet he kept disappearing right in front of our eyes. The cheerful cards and little surprises didn’t help.

There was no talk of depression then, though we had our suspicions. My dad was a larger than life character. A successful salesman turned executive turned salesman. He had movie star looks and dressed to the nines. He could sell anything to anyone at any time. If you look up the words charm, charisma and class, you would see his picture.

There is more. A larger back story which not for today. Today I am facing the demon that haunts me and taunts me until  it is hard to breathe. Today I am facing the biggest trauma I have ever experienced. Today I am facing the fact that my dad tried to commit suicide.

My hands shake as I type this. I have never seen this in words before, only in my memories, as vivid as last nights dream. My phone rang. I was 29 with two kids and a husband. On my own. My parents were still my lifeline and always a comfort in my daily life. I answered the phone to my brother’s voice, listening carefully as the numbness moved from my feet, up my body, into my brain. “Dad…..” , that’s all I can remember. I bolted to the hospital, using whatever was left of me to be able to execute any sort of physical feat.

It was very grim. He swallowed 100 Xanax and left a short note about not wanting to be a burden. His intention was to make sure that he would never wake up. He did not ask for heroic measures to revive him. He wanted his life to end. Period.

Minutes passed, I don’t know how many. Hours. Doctors. Information. Those are not the things I remember. It was the annihilating shock of what had transpired that I carry with me. Why? As simple as a three-letter word. Why? Eventually, my dad was transferred to a room. He was not awake yet but he was alive. We would stay by his side continuously until he awoke, groggy and mortified. His attempt failed and he would live.

Within a few days, the family had to decide what to do. There was discussion of finding a “good place” for him. You know, a “good place” versus “a bad place”. Only the best. We rallied for him and escorted him to this good place where he could be among other executive types who fell. I remember him telling me that his roommate was a priest. I remember sitting outside with my quiet and very ashamed father not saying much of anything out loud. In my head, I was screaming, WHY?

He didn’t stay at that good place for very long. It just wasn’t his thing. He came home and slowly got back into the groove of his life, even quieter than he was before. There was another drama occurring during all of this time with my mother. She had another reoccurrence of breast cancer and her local doctors considered it inoperable . My oldest brother brought her to another doctor who disagreed and removed the cancer and got my mother back on her path to wellness.

My dad would live for four more years never speaking of what happened on that day in 1987. And when it was the end, he took the answer to my “why”” with him for all eternity. Leaving me to wonder what I had done to make him want to leave my world by his own hand with a bottle of Xanax.

Today, decades and breakdowns and tears later, I have finally used my words to tell of a tragedy that I have yet to find the skills to fully understand or cope with. Today, I realize, though I will never understand, I will cope and will accept that some of our deepest secrets will never see the light of day. Some of our questions will never be answered. And some of our pain will live within us until we die.

For whatever your reason was dad, I know in my heart that it wasn’t because you didn’t love me. And though I will never know the answer to my forever burning question, today I lay it to rest, tuck it neatly away and step out of the shadow those three letters have cast over me for so long.

Goodbye “Why?” Good riddance.

5/4/2014

Coventry CT