House-Cleaning and Motivation

Today, I enjoyed the revelation that my kitchen is dirty.  It was such a joy, to see 3 little spiders, isolated incidents mind you… scurrying by the windowsill.  In reaction, I squealed like a feminine limp-wristed epitome, and then frantically used my magic eraser against years worth of dried stains, and so forth.  My mother often laments that my slovenly ways will attract bugs.

Eventually, my brother told me that it was likely due to the weather, given that the spideys only are found by the window.

Nevertheless, this adventure actually marks a turning point in my life: I now have enough energy to clean my living space without feeling psychologically drained and irritated.

A first in my life!  Fortunately I’ve learned this lesson before hitting the big 3 – 0.  Almost didn’t make it, by little more than 4 months.

No matter.

I often lament that house-cleaning is a job relegated to people perceived as unintelligent.  Housewives.  Minority-raced janitors.  Cleaning ladies who speak no inglés.  And yet I struggle to do it.

Until now.  Far from being menial, space-cleaning can actually be an opportunity for spiritual practice.  Observe Buddhist monks.  For me, I never fancied monkhood to be much desirable, but now?  Perhaps it’s not so bad.

For my home… it is a temple.  It is a place where I rest and find sanctuary.  Where I retreat from the outside world.  Where I can shed my social persona and be my real self.  Although… my social persona and my home persona are pretty much one, because I spend a good deal of time chatting with friends on Facebook.

— Don’t knock it!  If not for FB, I’d not have my nice friends in Germany and Tunisia and… just other people who once were in my life, but are now far and away… and other online American friends galore! —

If nothing else, cleaning ensures that my computer keyboard is not covered in a film of oil, generated from typing while eating hummus with my fingers.  Gross… but such we do, when we are mentally tired.

Some call it laziness.  But for me?  No such thing as the big L word.  No.  Rather, let’s call it “being unmotivated.”  Because while laziness is a negative put-down, lack of motivation is something that can be improved upon.  Instead of demonizing such said person, it instead invites an opportunity to offer assistance.  Laziness is perceived as a choice.  Lack of motivation is not.

Sadly, society is not creative enough to see it this way.

2 Types of Insanity: Imprisonment, and Evil

Sometimes, I wish I knew what I was doing.  I wish I knew all the answers to all questions… Every question that could possibly be conceived by mankind… Poof! I have the answer.

But do answers imply that solutions will be put into place?  Sadly not.  Take global warming.  We’ve collected a lot of data, found a lot of answers regarding how we can prevent this.  But implementing this knowledge… That is another beast all together.

Money is a cruel current.  Currency.  To possess it, implies that one has power.  Spending power.  With power comes authority. In a perfect world, those with money, and wealth overall, would be the wisest members of society. They would be paragons of behavior. Examples to be emulated.

In our real world, the wealthy are anything but.   There are some generous-hearted philanthropists who donate a good chunk of their fortunes to charitable causes, which is commendable.  But sadly, others who possess wealth simply absorb themselves in the pursuit of acquiring even more wealth. And to what end?

Perhaps wealth leads to… confidence? Or an over-inflated sense of self, and in no danger of popping. Take Kanye West.  He fancies himself to be one of the most important people alive today.  He equates himself with God.  This isn’t even an exaggeration!  According to him, he has the same infinite wisdom as God does, and he deserves every penny he earns because… He’s a deity or something.

Justin Bieber seems to have the same inflated sense of self-worth too.  Oh, how those girls would suffer, if they didn’t have the Biebz to worship.

Sometimes, I wonder how these wealthy and/or idolized people would cope, if one day, they lost their sanity.  Lost their marbles, spontaneously.  Went crazy.  What would happen?

I ask, because, very often, that’s how mental illness strikes. Without rhyme or reason. One day… Kablam! Your brain explodes, and you’re left with broken pieces, encased in a skull.

I paint a vivid, if only a fantastical image.

I hope that Mr. West and Mr. Bieber never experience such a tragedy in their lives.  But… maybe they already have.

For there are two kinds of insanity.

One kind, which is the kind that I have, is when you feel imprisoned.  Your illness creates a prison, and you live in it.  You… the real you… are forced to cower in a corner of your mind, while you observe the illness taking over. It feels like something outside of yourself. It terrorizes your soul, and you are unable to break free. And very often… You don’t even realize you are cowering.  The illness replaces you.  It erases your personhood, and leaves you in a state of helplessness and confusion.

And then there is the second type of insanity: the attitude of entitlement. This is much more sinister. It is also much more common, and usually goes unnoticed. A husband beats his wife and children, becuse he feels that he is the “man” of the house. He feels that it is his right to enforce discipline, and teach his family a lesson after they violate some nonsensical, unwritten rule that keeps changing. Wifey didn’t greet him with a smile and a kiss when he came home. The child accidentally drank from his glass of beer. He, the abuser, rationalizes that it is not only his right, but his duty.

You might be dating a guy who is tremendously cheap. He calls an Amazon seller to negotiate knocking the $2.50 shipping rate off of his purchase. Maybe he hides in the toilet room of the train, in order to avoid the ticket-collecting conductor. You might feel embarrassed when he does this, but he thinks that not only is he entitled, but clever too! Society… What a bunch of dopes!  To him, he makes sport of stealing candy from babies, or other unsuspecting-types.  If someone is too stupid to defend what they have, then they deserve to have it taken from them. I’m entitled to take it. It’s mine.

Sound familiar?  This is an attitude we lament.  Liberals deem this the mindset of those 1% rich republicans.  Conservatives believe this to be the attitude of certain socialist-liberal politicians.  Regardless of political persuasion, we are familiar with this concept in America.

And… power corrupts.  Cruel government regimes, forcing powerless people to live according to human spirit-stifling rules. Curfews breached lead to executions. Bread lines. Police states. Taxes.

And celebrities, demanding cheers and screams from adoring fans, a la Kim Jong Un.  Like Dr. Evil from Austin Powers.  You must laugh at the right time.  You must cheer at the right time.  You must moan at the right time.  If your timing is off, you’re wrong.  You, your personhood… are wrong and useless.  And that is punishable by death.

I think Misters West and Bieber are already mentally ill, with this second type of illness. They definitely feel like they deserve these droves of fans.  They’re entitled to those fans.  King Bieber sings with the voice of an angel.  His songs are like blessings from Heaven.  And Lord West… every word out of his mouth is an adage, possessing infinite wisdom even more than that found in the Bible. The Quran.  The Torah. The I-Ching. The Bahavadgita.

Well, sirs… If you’re so fucking smart… Why don’t you write your own holy book? Why don’t you write, in your divine tome, why your wisdom is better than that found in these other time-tested holy books?  After all, I’m sure you can understand them better than we can. Teach us, Oh Wise Ones.

They’d probably accept the challenge… if they had enough free time. For now, they’re “artists.”  They’re “busy.”  So busy, that they can’t do basic things for themselves.  They have teams of people who make sure they eat the right food, people who ensure that their airplane bedsheets have high thread counts.  And people who make sure that the right brand of toilet paper is in every bathroom that graces the ass of said figures.  Woe betide the fool who faces the roll in the wrong direction.

It would be a nightmare if Bieber or Kanye were politicians.  I wonder… if we were to entrust either figure with a population of people, living under his rule… what would happen?

It’s one thing to establish laws in order to keep a peaceful and economically prosperous society. But it is another thing, when laws are passed, designed as such where the underlying aim is not to govern, but to rule.  And in order to rule, one must first change the unique, individual beliefs of each person, into nothing else but a worshipper.  Or… a fan.

The greatest freedom known to man is mental freedom.  Those who suffer from the first kind of mental illness, the prisoner type… you must always reach towards the light, if only to enjoy its fleeting warmth.

And to you who are of the second type… realize that you, yourself… are not made of that light that others reach towards.  You are not a graced figure.  You are not a special person.  Your presence in others’ lives is not all roses.  A slap from your hand on your wife, does NOT make her more wise.

We cannot change corrupt people.  But we must arrange our circumstances into such, so that such people do not corrupt us.  And… what if you’re corrupt?  How do you know?

I say…  if you don’t understand what I’m talking about here… if you can’t relate to what I’m writing… then you’ve got something to worry about.

What Does it Mean To Be Normal?

I’m very happy at the Supreme Court ruling in favor of gay marriage.  If people are loving, and happy… that is a family.  Worthy of tax benefits and shared health insurance.

A part of me is kind of evil though.  I’m not gay, so it doesn’t “affect” me.  I mean, I’ve been very open to the concept.  Experimented, went to some groups in the Gay Center in the village, frequented Cubbyhole… I was incredibly open-minded to the idea that I could possibly be gay, but I eventually realized that it was not who I was.

It goes to show, that you don’t get “infected” by being around gay people.

Truly, to me… it’s rather boring.  Not in that being gay is invalid.  But… it’s just another variant of normal.  Like, a married couple at home with a dog laying in front of the TV.  The baby cries, and someone picks it up and feels its diaper for poop.  Wow.  That is so evil.  People, at home, caring for a baby.  That is too boring to be evil.

For me, the whole concept of family is boring.  And these days… even dating.  The idea of being chained to another person, regardless of gender… it is not motivating to me.  Maybe I am sounding depressed.  But also… I’m just saying what’s true in my heart.  I’ve been burned by people that I cared about, who didn’t care about me back.  If I think about it, this has nothing to do with gender.  Whatever one’s sexual preference is… that can happen to anyone.  Not being liked back, by a person you have feelings for.

These days, I’m trying to think… what is my mission in life?  What makes me motivated?  For many, having a family is a motivation.  Having children.  A life partner.  Or maybe more than one life partner.  Who knows.  For me… what do want?  What would make me happier, beyond anything?

I think… making a difference in the world.  I don’t want to have children.  But I would love to open a high school one day.  A place where teens would not be pressured into having sex to be cool.  A place where teens wouldn’t have to dress in designer labels to gain respect.  A place where teens could ask questions without fearing that they sound “too smart.”  It would be… a place where teachers would open up their lives to their students.  So that it’s not just “Do what I say, not as I do…”  But instead it would be just, people, sharing themselves, and mutual respect.  A boarding school.  Where teachers would be eloquent examples of what it is to be human.

And mental health… that would be a BIGGIE.  The teachers would be experienced with mental illness in their own lives… peers.  They’d open up about their struggles and triumphs to their students, so that they don’t feel alone.  And also… I think there should be some “normal” people too.  Peers and “non-peers.”  Mixed.  Kind of like special-ed/integrated classes.  So that those unaffected by mental illness can also become more open-minded.

I fancy myself evil, primarily because I don’t have anything to live for.  No desire for kids.  No significant other, and no desire to find one.  Why do I work then?  To support… myself?  Isn’t that selfish?

Lately, I think my mission is not only to advocate for mental health rights.  I also want to advocate for the personhood of teenagers.  I want to help teens prove to the world that they are not rebels.  They actually desperately want to fit in.  That’s how I felt in high school.  I wanted to be accepted by everyone around me.  I felt like a loser because I knew, deep down, that I was different.  I couldn’t smile like the other kids.  There was nothing to smile about.

I think that, if I can help improve the lives of teenagers, then that would give the world another chance.  Because right now, everything is messed up.  We see celebrities on TV, models in magazine ads.  They tell us what it means to be attractive.  The internet is full of porn.  It’s disgusting.  Not because of the nakedness… it’s disgusting because all these people… they’re making billions and billions of dollars off of us.

They tell us what to think.  They tell us that we are ugly and wrong, and that we need their clothes to be worthy.  We need their makeup.  Perfume.  Cars.  Beer.  Cigarettes.  We need them to tell us what is in style, because we can’t think for ourselves.

And people buy into it.  And if you go crazy… well that’s your fault.

In my opinion, this is what evil is.  Forcing people to live a way that is unnatural.  Gay marriage… is NOT this.  Gay marriage… that is allowing people to live in a way that is natural.

The Need for Mental Health Awareness

A lot of times, I lament that I do not do enough with my time.  I wish I was more productive.  “Prolific,” I call it.  After all, I’ve studied many of the classical music composer master guru guys… Mozart, Beethoven… we go way back.  So when I compare my life to these geniuses, I feel terribly like I’m falling short.

No matter.  My life has a different purpose.  Different circumstances.  Different world.

Instead of music I create… I like to think I create hope.  My job as a peer specialist… it gives me an opportunity to offer compassion and understanding to people who so badly need it.  The world looks on us, with mental illness disabilities, with “awkwardness.”

I truly believe that awkwardness is perhaps one of the greatest, most evil states of mind found in the 21st century.

And me… of course… my dream is to FIGHT awkwardness.

Let’s start with that three-letter word… SEX.  Adolescents, coming into their own, twitter and tweet (online and off) about this new concept that they think they have discovered, the same as Columbus discovered America.  They think they invented sex.  Our media panders to these children, and money is made.  Perhaps the biggest allure of sex, psychologically, is that it is a taboo subject.  It creates “awkwardness” in adults when adolescent children begin to desire wearing more provocative clothing.

Oh how mature.

Honestly though.  I remember, as a teenager, I wanted nothing more than to be more mature than my peers.  I expressed this by applying myself earnestly to my studies.  I focused on classical music as my discipline and future career.  I was fortunate to attend a private school that had a high school of about 85 students total, which was a godsend for me.  The fewer adolescent children around me, the better.

These days, I long to change the world.  I’ve found my passions too: writing and mental health.  I feel a certain degree of confidence and mastery in both these discipline.  With music, it was always just… scraping away, horsetail against metal, bow against string, lubricated not with oil, but with chaifing, dusty, sticky rosin.  The antithesis of anything remotely erotic.

I liken it to masturbating with a cactus.

The point of this blog post is that, it doesn’t really have a point.  And that’s ok.  I long to be prolific, but I also have to realize that the mind needs rest and rejuvenation, if it is to produce anything of true consequence.  After all, Bach himself fathered 20 children.  Even though he was only involved in the conception of such beings, that still indicates that he enjoyed himself somewhat.

This always baffles me.  Bach was such a superb composer.  He composes with the precision of a calculator, and yet he is creative.  If ever artificial intelligence were to realistically materialize, it should have an operating system equivalent to… whatever Bach drew from in his own creativity.

Of course there are Bach scholars out there, who would know the answer to this question.  But I prefer not to read what they have written, because wading through pages of chaff to get to what I want to read, honest-to-goodness wheat…

I mean, I don’t even eat fucking bread.  I’ve removed it from my diet.  And I exercise.

Musicians don’t understand this.  They practice 6 hours a day.  Then they clink glasses of red wine and laugh and talk in different languages… where’s the fitness?  No wonder they look doughy.

So… me, saying I want to be prolific… to what end?  I suppose I should not compare myself to composers or musicians, if I am to be a prolific writer.  But there again, there are many prolific writers.  Lately, I’ve been reading some Michael Crichton.  Easy reads, yet edifying in an entertaining way.

Life is short.  We stagger and stumble, and we inhale the dirt we kick up, causing us to feel winded and defeated.  And as we look up from the ground, prostrate, we see Olympian runners speeding ahead of us, kicking up more dirt that we, the loser, must inhale.  The winners win, and the losers not only lose, but suffer.

Perhaps this is why I want to be prolific so badly.  I have felt very much glued to the floor, Olympians and amateurs alike running circles around me, kicking, kicking kicking.  My attempts to get up?  Impossible.  I’m not only glued to the floor… I am the floor.  I am the dirt.

The ability to be prolific… it is universally unfair.  What makes the prolific people better than me, other than… skill?  Talent?  Aptitude?  Discipline?  Work ethic?

Those motivational types always say: “You can do whatever you put your mind to.”

Oh really.  A quadrpelegic can play the piano, if she only puts her mind to it.  Right.

Let’s stop with the freaking “feel-good,” warm gooey heart-warming encouragement.  Those of us who have experienced depression know that it is fundamentally bullshit.  Because it’s not only about putting your mind to something.  It’s about what you look like.  How warmly you smile.  Body language.  It’s about how we present ourselves, and how people around us react.

Imagine.  If a person with pleasant demeanor applies herself to her studies in music, her teacher favors her and encourages her, and then due to positive encouragement, or love if you will, she becomes a very prosperous violinist.  Then, perhaps the same teacher has another stuent, just as diligent, but perhaps he frowns.  Or winces at his mistakes.  The teacher takes less kindly to this poor sap, perhaps even comparing the boy negatively to the favored girl.  The teacher doesn’t offer the same warmth, and the boy suffers.  Lack of confidence… etc.

Would you say that the girl is any more motivated than the boy?  Why is the girl rewarded then?

As I said, fortune favors the fortunate.  Sad state of affairs.

This is why I want to do some world-changing work in mental health.  Because mental health affects everyone.  Almost everyone is born with a functioning brain.  And almost all of those people experience what we call “feelings,” or “emotions.”  We are just leaving the Dark Ages, as far as our understanding of the human psyche goes.

Now is the time, where we are starting to truly define what goes on in our brains.  But in my opinion, it is not only science that should determine what we know, but something far greater.

Experience.

Schizoprenia: It’s Time We Understood It

Many fears abound in my heart, mostly related to memories I have of the past.  It’s changed over the years.  As a child, it was fear of my father.  After he left, it became “PTSD,” which haunted me for most of my adolescent years.   In my early twenties, the fears from that experience waned, only to be replaced with schizophrenia.  And since then… sheer terror.  Flashbacks… not terribly violent ones, but basically recollections of the ideas that once floated through my head.

I am actually grateful for these reminders, because they allow me to never forget where I came from.  If I were ever to forget, then I would not have the fuel I need in order to… dedicate my life to challenging mental health stigma.

Especially also, I want to tell the world what it is like to experience schizophrenia.  There are many support groups online for depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder… but the internet is suprisingly mum about schizophrenia.  Why?

Well… schizophrenia is a different beast all together.  The nature of schizophrenia is such, that you are thrust into an alternate reality.  And when you try to communicate with the world around you, no one understands.

For me… I’ve been in the throes of schizophrenia, but I also have made it to the other side.  Miraculously, I am now sane enough to describe what I’ve experienced, in a way that “normal” people can understand.  Having this ability… I want to dedicate my life to demystifying schizophrenia.  I want to erase the notion that schizophrenia leads to criminality.

Here’s a video of me in 2011, when I had just gotten out of the hospital:

Talking in a childish voice, snapping my finger randomly, and unattractive besides.  Unattractive in personality, I mean.

Schizophrenia.

What was going through my head when I made this video?

Well, I had previously been working as a music teacher.  My entire life was enriched by a classical music education, culminating in my earning a bachelors in viola from a prestigious school.

But no matter.  It was actually terribly pressuring.  The only reason I continued with music as long as I did, at the university level, was because I knew nothing else in my life.  I had been a musician as long as I could remember.  It was my identity.  So I fell into it.  When performance didn’t work out, I tried to pursue music education, both as a private instructor and as a classroom teacher.

This video is a result from burnout.  Burnout from living my life as a musician.  Burnout from trying to hide my illness.  Burnout from forcing myself to think on the “normal” wavelength, when my brain was anything but.

I was mid-year in my first year of teaching at a school, when I suddenly broke down.  I was hospitalized, and in such shambles that I was forced to quit my job.  I was also attending a post-baccalaurate program, and had to drop out of that as well.  My life came to a stop.  No longer was I a productive “adult.”  I was forced back into childhood, living with my mother, with no friend but a computer connected to the internet.

Yet I longed to exress myself.  While in the comfy hospital, I found solace by writing poems.  Mostly “nonsense” perhaps, but to me, it was incredibly meaningful.  It was a gesture.  A statement.  An affirmation that I was not worthless, but that I had something to say.  Something incredibly precious.

So when I left the hospital, I wanted to keep this spirit alive and share it with others.  I made several of these poetry videos, which I suppose served to embarrass me.  My behavior was childish, my behavior was odd, and the words I spoke were “nonsense.”

The worst part was, parents of some of the students I taught saw these videos.  Because of this, I was basically shunned from my former teaching community.  And when I tried to return back to grad school, I was questioned.  “Are you safe enough to teach?”

That question made my answer quite clear.  In that, that question does not deserve an answer.

Why should I have to hide what I have been through?  Why should I force myself into a profession, where I have to hide the well-spring of my personal sense of wisdom?

I mean… I have been through a whirlwind of circumstances, such that I had the wind knocked out of my sails numerous times.  Knocked to the ground.  Forced to pick up the pieces of my life, trying to put them together again like Humpty Dumpty, only to be knocked down again.  After trying to put yourself together over and over again, you start to just become a glop of inarticulate glue.

And then you wonder, “why bother?”  And then you don’t care about yourself, so you become overweight.  And then you go on disability.  And then you give up hope of ever living a normal life. Certainly, wasn’t my video odd?  Of course I’d never live a normal life again.  Right?

WRONG.  Those people, horrified at those videos I posted… I proved them WRONG.  Because now, I’ve lost that weight.  I’ve gotten on meds, good ones, and now I can work full-time, for the first time in my life.

And the work I do, as a peer specialist… it’s important!  I help people with mental illness, people like myself… and I talk to them with respect.  I regard them as people, not walking liabilities.  And you know what?  I see people transform.  I see people smile.  People thank me, and tell me they had a good time talking to me.  They’re glad I took the time to listen to them.

It’s all very subtle.  But it’s so vital.  We, the mentally ill… people ignore our personhood.  And we wither.  But if you talk to us like human beings… truly… we blossom.

Earlier, I said I wanted to tell you what it’s like to experience schizophrenia.  I’ll tell you:

It is a world that acknowledges the 6th sense.  Intuition.  Imagination.  And the desires of the heart.  The world around you not only surrounds you, but it SPEAKS to you as well.  You receive messages.  And those messages engage the organ that perceives this 6th sense.  We know not what that organ is… perhaps there is none.  But when we stimulate our 6th sense, our hearts become wildly fulfilled.  Every fibre of our being is engaged and acknowledged.

THIS is what makes a schizophrenic reality more compelling than that which psychiatrists tell us is “real.”  This is why we persevere in our “fantasies,” much to the chagrin of horrified onlookers.  We perceive ourselves as progressive and in tune with what is “really” going on, while everyone else is asleep in the Matrix.

Movies and fiction probably paint the schizophrenic experience best, in a way that regular people can find palatable.  Sarah Connor, preparing her son John for being the leader of the resistance against an apocalyptic robot army: this, a reality only known to her.  Real to her, but not the rest of the world.  Or… the Sixth Sense: a boy, seeing ghosts.  Dead people.  No one else sees them.

Many people claim that psychiatric medications actually stifle a person’s expression of spirituality.  They say that in olden days, those with “mental illness” were actually esteemed for being in touch with the spiritual world.  They occupied shaman positions in villages.  Or perhaps in today’s world, many can claim psychic intuition.

Perhaps one day, schizophrenia will be an understood experience.  As of now, it is not.  What is more comforting: being judged and stigmatized for being abnormal, or “succumbing” to an alternate reality that is life-affirming?  Sometimes, schizophrenia is an escape.  A much-needed one.  The world refuses to change, and so our “broken” brains are clever enough to change it, if only for ourselves.

It’s a survival mechanism.

How Can an Aquarium Speak?

I remember when I was a kid.  The best Christmas present I ever received was an empty aquarium.  A few days later, it was filled with water and three goldfish.

Far from being a boring type of pet, I reveled and marveled at these goldfish, swimming freely in the water.  I named all three fish, with names as unoriginal as “Goldie.”  Whatever the others were named, I don’t recall.  But I remember… fabricating and fancying relationships between the fish.  This one chases that one, this one nibbles at the surface of the water, and always, little stringy trails of… poop.

Food for the imagination.

And my favorite fish was a black moor, also a type of goldfish.  An adorable creature I named “Blackie.”  Blackie had personality.  He… I assumed it was a “he…”  he would dance in the bubbles from the filter with perceived glee.  Other fish would follow, only to find discomfort in the bubbles.  Blackie was not normal though.  He was a daredevil.  Living on the edge.  A rebel.  A leader.  A trailblazer.

Sadly, he died about two weeks after I got him.  He is the single pet I have cried most over.  All at the tender age of seven.

I speak pretty comically here.  But I do so to illustrate a point: fish, swimming… it is more than we perceive.

Imagine.  Fish live in liquid, through which they are able to swim.  But fish do not think they are swimming… do they?  They do not know the air we breathe.  They only know the water.  Water to them, is a bit like air to us.  Except…

Fish can fly through the “air” they breathe.

What a claim to boast!  I wish I could fly through what I breathe.

With fish… the water is something they can push against.  It is solid form.  And they know how to harness it.  It is instinct of course.

We deem ourselves so evolved, yet we cannot achieve what fish can in their water.

*******

To me… the instance when I feel most as if I am in an “aquarium,” filled with solid form that I breathe and understand, as fish understand water… is when I listen to music.

Music.  Especially classical music.  Classical music has many layers, differing and competing, one over the other, in patterns that weave and diverge.  During sublime moments, I fancy myself a fish, surrounded by pregnant air… music, swirling around me, taking on not only an intangible sonic quality, but actual, solid form.

It is an exercise of the imagination.

And yet… this same part of my brain that I exercise, in order to experience the physical form of music… it is the same part of my brain that fancies alternate realities.  Psychosis.  Delusion.  Magical thinking.  Grandiosity.  Self-importance, all in the effort to…make meaning of my life when there is none to speak of.

Disabled.  Borderline obese.  Unemployed.  A graduate school drop-out, twice over.  There is no way to live an epic, exciting life, unless you make it up in your head.  And then, even if you are happy or satisfied with your made-up, compelling reality… you are pegged as insane.  But in some ways, insanity is the only thing that can make one not look at him/herself as a failure.

I am incredibly lucky.  After nearly 27 years of sickness… I am through the tunnel.  Perhaps the tunnel was a birth canal.  But who birthed me?  And why was the tunnel such that it was lined with needles, poking me every time I made a wrong turn?

What a cruel mother.

********

The aquarium speaks.  The way I used to experience psychosis, was that the air, or the aura, around inanimate objects would tell me frightening messages.  And now?  Medicine has morphed those messages into something else: intuition.

The aquarium speaks.  You are in it.  Listen to it.