A 2$ word. Transcend. Love these Ads, “rise above”, “get rid of negative thoughts” “get over trauma”. We can just fly over this shit, landing in greener pastures. More like a Billboard for Heroin or Crack. Problem being, upon arrival, YOU’RE still there. Feeling bad should be inSINerated. I’m transcending transcendence – now that’s real. Inviting humiliation, guilt, jealousy, hate, doubt for tea. Nothing to rise/soar above. How do we rise above our true authentic selves? Would we want to?
My legs. They know. They No. They ache, whine, and protest for days after heavy exercise – biking, kickboxing, hours of garden. I awaken the beast with stimulation. Reaching into the container of stifled protest, the well hidden events of a traumatic past. Weighed down by old held trauma. Wanting to run away. To fight off unwanted advances. Secretly wishing my legs would have defied my abusers and be unmovable, thwarting someone’s plan. All that protest energy still taking up residence. A protest that wasn’t allowed. A fuck-you condensed by sad-mess. Yes, old grief, that hopeless bastard. Bringing me to my aching knees. Festering, swirling – wishing relief.
The pain is constant. I don’t know where to put my legs so they won’t ache, won’t wake me. Muscular pain that is tired of waiting for the green light to release. Tired of holding. Aching at 2,3,4 a.m. Restless toss and burn. Heavy burdened walking sticks. Demanding attention for what was ignored before. This body does not forget. Tissues pregnant with issues. A high-risk pregnancy that must be watched, monitored. Until the delivery of release.
The threat of physical harm a long-ago-reality. All of my unconscious, protective holding is no longer needed – but my legs never got the memo. A loving gesture of exercise to keep my body fit and healthy has some underlying “gifts”. This physical pain I feel delivers me to the doorway of my emotional pain. Pain rents space, usually safe, undisturbed – until I call it out. Then pain has a voice. When my legs speak, they sound desperate. With ex-hurt-sion they plead with me. Their quiet whispers they tell me they’re exhausted. To please do the work. We’re sad, broken and depressed, needing deep-rest.
My relationship with my body is tight. Tight as the terror still residing in my legs, hips and pelvis. I talk with her. Sending love to my tender, lovely, strung-out legs. They need love. I purposefully bring the darkness forward, into consciousness. Visualizing the eviction of fear, disgust, shame, etc.. calling in Spirit Animals or Angels or Spirit Guides. Sitting with strong emotions. Standing with the reality of it all outside the cage of existence I used to know.
As my legs begin to thaw from their frozen “normal”, it hurts. I’ve disturbed a whole latta dark. The darkness wants out and that’s always painful. Painful going in, painful coming out. The trapped is wrapped in an old worn out container. My container is falling apart. As it should. As I relax, letting my guard down physically, the expression of what WAS is free to flow. These muscles and bones have known no safe place. No downtime.
I have a choice. We all do. I can do nothing. And invite in fibro-your-algia…cause NO, it will never be MINE. Never. I can wallow in vic-dumb-hood or I can stand on my own two legs and fight for my best life. I choose to evict the darkness. The thick, strangled webs of dysfunctional energy. They ooze sadness. A sadness so great I am compelled to ask them what they need. To actually have a conversation with my legs. The held trauma, wishing to take away my mobility, my health, my drive and flexibility. No thank-you.
I don’t blame my legs for the pain. Instead, I treat them like old friends. Dry brushing them to direct the fluid and energy to my lymphnodes for proper drainage. I Reiki them. I give them baths with Epsom salts for detox and relaxation of the strained muscles. I wrap them in warmth and allow emotion to flow unabstructed. I cry for the return of painless.
In a miraculous body way, a brilliant way, it handled it. By shutting down. By tensing up in protection. By stuffing all the ugly into my tissues and muscles because it was too much for a little girl to handle. The body never forgets.
Compassion is having the capacity to hold, and the wisdom to allow, deep love to flow from your mature heart space as an energetic offering, to a recipient/situation.
Compassion is not subject to permission, boundaries or reception.
It’s a private, organic offering/agreement between your higher self and ancient, wise mother heart.
I see compassion as two chambers of the same heart. One holding and honoring what WAS and the other holding and honoring what IS. Right and wrong, good and bad don’t exist, there is space and acceptance for all of it.
Compassion is having room for the entirety of an experience and seeing the inherent beauty, anyways.
Compassion is when you realize that caring deeply about others does not mean you have to surrender or negate some part of yourself.
Compassion is our loving acceptance of shades of gray in the human condition.
Compassion is a process by which you gaze, with eyes of softness, on those who could use holding, through their pain and struggle, especially when they can’t/won’t help themselves – regardless of their “deserving it”.
Compassion is standing onshore, looking into the eyes of pain in another, and remaining separate (without jumping in after them/merging with them in their pain) and loving them from dry land.
Compassion is realized, offered and received when the path to heart wisdom has been significantly cleared of the debris of trauma.
I heard the call. The call to run. But first I must stand still. Still enough to know just how far and fast I’d have to run. My boys, 5 and 2. So sweet, so innocent, so loyal. Hanging onto my legs, my every word. Looking deeply into my presence to feel the safety only their momma could muster. They love me, they need me. All of this. Triggering the vision of an engulfing, suffocating beast. Stealing all but a sip of untainted oxygen for itself. From the depths of middle earth this beast, slithering, watching, waiting. Safety was away from my family of origin. My inner child was bathed in muck and lies and deception. Hypervigilance, dissociation was living… this felt safe, ground. I was thawing from THIS freeze. Coming alive, breaking the surface, just the way they wouldn’t want me to. All of my abusers.
My true self attempting to surface, the bubbling wouldn’t stop. The dirty water no longer able to hold my buoyancy down. In dreamland, I was orchestrating this violence, killing for revenge. Long held rage and helplessness thawing from my frozen petite veins. Graphic scenes of stabbing, blood soaked, lifeless bodies, ripping knives through flesh. Ripping, like orgasmic, primal release. Always protecting myself from being wiped out – like I NEVER could. I could fuck you over just like you did to me. Kill or be killed. The delicious, giddy power of a knife, gutting as I was gutted, tearing at my power center. My aliveness gushing out like a shaken soda bottle. And you drank every drop. I felt justified, powerful, alive. You like me now? Does this feel good? just like you’d ask me.
Saving my sanity overnight, everynight. Revenge on those who want to hurt me for their own pleasure. I’ll show you what it’s like to have your guts ripped out. I can show you what it’s like to feel like an object, an option, a toy. Killing people without killing people. The dead I felt inside brought to life one REM cycle after the next.
Years and years titled The Rebirth of Me, Me Taking My Power Back, Who I Came Here To Be, Anyways. No Fucking Apologies. Me speaking my truth to anyone who would 1/2 listen. Me opening up to my experience, reaching, for the first time, for validation. My body thawing from habitual anxiety, chronic muscular tension, sinus infections, sore throats, sciatic, neck pain, gall bladder attacks, anorexia… the list goes on, long. I must be dying. I know I have a tumor. This is what they wanted. Every medical test known to man, negative. My body was trying to express and keep us healthy. Now it was time to listen. Only I could do this for myself. For my first 30 years I ran. I kept busy, I shoved it down. The souls of my children, showing me how it should have been, showing me the pure innocence, trust and love of a child. Just BEing. How it should have been. 23 years now. Standing up. Standing Tall. Standing with. Standing in. In my pain, my anxiety, my reflux, my vertigo -asking the ________ what it’s here for. What’s the message…cause there is ALWAYS a message.
Who the hell is A Fish Named Karen you ask? Well, I’m not a fish 🙄 (duh) and I’m not Karen. Actually, the name Karen has always made me chuckle. A peculiar name for a Fish. Random, plain-Jane, Fish-next-door-type of title. Yep, that’s me. Flopping around life, silent, completely random, imperfect, colorful, delicious, breathing under water, deceitful, interesting, slippery, elusive – yup, THAT kind of Karen. THAT kind of Fish 👀
Actually A Fish Named Karen got its name about 20 years ago to be exact. My son was excited about the idea of owning a pet. He wanted a Fish and would bring it up often at the dinner table. I was so curious, “So, what would you name your fish?” His reply, of course, “Karen, Mom, A Fish Named Karen.” Can’t make this shit up. So, when I considered starting a blog, it came to me right away. What a brilliant title, born from childhood innocence, to help introduce and express the not so innocent tragedies of my childhood. What a perfect name, in a perfect WordPress fishbowl. Swimming with many, many fish in the waters of the human condition.
My anonymity purposeful. As truth and vulnerability have a way of finding like-minded fish in a sea of untruths and fake smiles.
I will reveal that, although Karen is not my name – this is the ONLY piece of fabrication you will come upon in my writing.
It snowed last night. Surprise! After two weeks of solid Spring 50’s and 60’s. I immediately made the connection.
Remember the scene in the Wizard of Oz where Dorothy, Scarecrow, the Cowardly Lion and the Tin Man run through the field of Poppies on the way to the Castle of the Great Wizard? And in and around the poppies, the Wicked Witch of the West casts a spell (Covid19) which slows them all down from their goal/life…. But Glinda, the Good Witch/Fairy Godmother, makes it SNOW, covering the poppies and reversing the spell/Covid19. They are all well and set out once again on their journey with renewed faith in an excellent outcome.
Hoping for this for all of us🤞we need a Fairy Godmother right about now.
I’m in love with birch branches. They speak of flexibility, bending and twisting in response to life’s stressors. Continue reading “In Love #7”
Need. Having needs is part of the human experience. Most of us were taught that expressing a “need” was/is weird, sappy, weak, even selfish or mean. We also may stand in our own way of getting what is needed due to low self worth, not being able to express/form a need or feel humiliated for “needing” in the first place. The need for a quiet space, the need for someone to help us lift or move something heavy, the need to be listened to, acknowledged, the need to show emotion without it being a problem, the need for rest, the need to be honest and real without being cast as negative, the need to be who we are without apology.
Many of us stop ourselves from reaching out in need. As children we learn not to ask, we learn to handle things ourselves, be ultra-independent, stuff our hurts, emotions, fears, ignore bodily functions, even pass up food and drink – too avoid looking like we are too much work for our parents. In our little minds, it makes perfect sense to play and live small. Don’t appear weak, act like you know things that you possibly couldn’t know (no one has to spend the time on us, we are less of a burden) be self sufficient, keep everyone happy with us cause we are no trouble at all, no one will laugh at our needs if we keep them secret and deny that we have any. Everyone will love me and not think I’m a pain in the patootie.
As we grow into adults, away from our families of origin, We may never be met with ANY of this shaming responses around our need..
REMEMBER the world is not our family of origin.
We are most likely NOT going to be met with the attitude of our “family”. But sometimes it does feel as though we don’t want to stick our neck out with others for fear we will be humiliated (like we were as small children) all over again – just for having a simple need.
I think on some unconscious level we assume that others will negate our needs or ignore our expression of need. But to the contrary, in my experience, non-family members are not poised to fuck with our “need”. Take a chance. Take notice of what you say or do to stop yourself from getting your needs met cause now we’re just doing this to ourselves. WE are the snuffers of our own need, the dark blanket dimming our own light , the doubters of our own worth. Take notice of how you place the blame elsewhere.
Suicide – present situation
Guess what? That shit started 50 something years ago. Not HIS job, not HIS ex wife, not HIS daughter who decides to be a man now, not HIS crazy neighbor who throws garbage over the fence, no no no nope. Of course all that shit does not help but when someone decides to take his/her self out of this realm – it’s very tragic, gut wrenching. Of course! And leaves the living wondering what the fuck we could have done to help.
The answer ? Who the fuck knows. What I do know though, is that it is truly not our responsibility, ultimately, to keep someone alive. I know, that sounds bad. Really bad. There’s a boatload of guilt waiting for us if we feel we can save someone and it turns out badly. News flash… sadly, anything we’ve done or haven’t done is not going to keep someone else here.
Having a particular, recent person in mind ———–Someone taught HIM to hate himself. Someone taught HIM to feel like he had no right to be born, exist or thrive. SOMEONE got into HIS head, into his body, into his essence and implanted that self-hate agenda REAL SUPER early in HIS life. Crazy-ass fucked up treatment for a child. As children, we cannot make sense of this. Most children just internalize the trauma coming their way and believe they deserve it – after all, we need love, even if that love hurts, it’s still better than nothing. So then, most times, we spend the rest of our lives mistreating ourselves because deep inside, on some level, we think we are garbage.
All the other unfortunate circumstances HE drew to himself (along the way, over the years) were for the purpose of healing. IMO. The Universe’s attempt to crack HIM wide open. Some of us cannot/will not/do not EVER muster the willingness to unpack that shit. Unpack the black box of death. The box labeled with the skull and crossbones – and heal the trauma that hides in the shadows and rips us apart each and every minute of our lives.
HE missed his life raft opportunity – by choice. HE ignored the life-raft attempts, HE was tired of the struggle and just couldn’t see the big picture …there wasn’t enough alcohol or drugs in the world to keep the darkness from bubbling up into conscious thought. The nagging feelings of worthlessness and doom mounting until the burden of forging onward was too excruciating.
I attempted to end my life when I was 7. How fucking tragic would that have been? All because of the unspeakable trauma I was experiencing at the time, most nights of the week. The weight of physical/emotional/spiritual trauma, compounded year, after year, after year, is suffocating – all while pretending that everything is fine. Trying to forget, burying the pain and hate and rage and crushing anxiety. You convince yourself that no-one else would understand or, for that matter, believe you anyways. There is shame and guilt and self hate and secrecy.
Some of us seem to find our way. We are able, with lots of help, to eventually breathe life into the parts of us that died. We are able to separate from the tragic family unit we were born into. We are able to dig deep, form a new self and find a reason to live, to fight – and know that no matter what, we have to survive because otherwise, we won’t “win” – THEY will. And that would not be acceptable.
No matter how fast and long we run – our terror, shame and rage are on the welcoming committee upon our arrival. Wherever we run, they’re there when we pull in. Our shadow is always waiting patiently for us to notice it and drag up a chair at a table set for two. Maybe share a cozy meal as we chat over the brutal details we’ve been running from all of our lives. Taking small portions or maybe just an appetizer today.
Or not. Maybe we don’t unpack that shit and take a look. Maybe we can’t. This is a set-up for possible eventual suicide. Trust. Please start unpacking your shit. You are lovable, you are seen and you have the right to be here. And to stay here, loved.
This was so ridiculously intense looking I had to have a pic. Don’t be afraid to show up in color when surrounded by that which is dying off. Don’t be afraid to show up IN COLOR. Embrace the joy that is you.