Running on E,
Empty, my thoughts have
decided to run away,
they flee free me.
Running on E,
I let the empty get the best
of Me. I reach out-
towards the empty sky,
not a cloud in sight.
Running on E,
Grabbing outwards for the
poetry. To take a hold of Me.
But too much everything equates
Running on E,
but I digress.
Where did I misplace the Lioness?
Where did I misplace the Poetess?
Running on E,
nothing comes very easy.
The thoughts all roll right out of my brain,
catching like embers burning into fire,
as the free-verse falls down.
Running on E,
a hapless clown.
How to quench this thirst,
of creating something out of
Running on E,
it leaves me screaming-
so loud- my lips leave no sound.
The words all blocked up,
a corked up wine bottle.
Running on E,
the empty sound of silence,
What is left to say?
Where do the poem-words take you,
Empty, Empty, Empty,
and then like Humpty Dupty,
We All fall down.
Falling down again.
With a crash.
Yesterday, oh how I cried.
Huge horrible torrents of tears.
My husband did not know what to do-
he never really does, when I stumble
backwards into depression again.
My manias are easier for him to understand-
and he’s seen so many more of those-than this.
This black terror fit.
This wave crashing downwards upon me,
crushing me to the bone.
crushing me to my soul.
When I get like this, I cannot help myself;
I collapse in crying fits, jagged waves with razor teeth edges.
I cry so hard, I barely make a sound-just this gasping breathe-this sobbing mess.
I realize, of course I have so many blessings.
I have a loving husband, for the most part a very happy marriage.
I have many friends. I have a roof over my head, bills are paid, food in the house.
5 lovely fur-pets. A beautiful house and backyard. Our backyard has wonderful
But despite all the good-the depressions still sneak up upon me.
I cry for the have-nots.
I cry because I cannot find employment.
I have been looking over 18 months.
I cry because I have a history of miscarriages,
and infertility. I cry because I have mental illness, and
no matter how hard I try or which magic pills I swallow
I am still slightly crazy one day to the next.
I feel as though because I have been on disability so long…
that I have no worth as a person. I believe a job or a career
in many ways defines you, and for me? I have nothing but years of blank spaces.
I just recently finished a masters degree. Unfortunately, after I got it, I realized;
it is a slightly useless one. I should have gotten a counseling degree…
instead I got a masters of Education: major in art Ed with a core focus of art therapy.
As lovely as that sounds, nobody will hire me.
I do not even have a teaching certificate.
I owe a fortune in student loans…
This most recent hypomania-back at the end of may-
well it nailed me.
And now I’m spiraling downwards without a staircase.
I struggle with broken-down-hands
to grab the gratitude, the blessings, the happiness
the optimism still there.
There is great love all around in this big beautiful world.
I need to find some deep inside myself, forgive my own
imperfections and share something pretty with the world.
So surprised and relieved,
to be free
of all the tricks my brain played on me.
The brain trap,
is a very dark place-
filled with negative
My imagination likes
to get carried away into the
deepest darkest cracks
of the brain trap.
It’s the pondering that is
if i am not overly cautious-
if will carry me away
in a black hearse.
The brain trap
contains; various toys of self-doubt,
depression, despair,fear and loathing…
when I am stuck deep inside myself-
I just want to cry & shout:
STOP IT!!!STOP IT RIGHT NOW!!!
SHUT UP ALREADY..
But sometimes, somehow, someway;
the gray clouds lift and part
the sun comes out
to shine the darkness away.
Relief comes in waves today.
So, see things are not as bad,
as they seemed.
Surprisingly, I take a deep breath,
and my demons go away.
Sometimes somewhere deep inside,
of us all lies a brain trap.
Your brain will lie to you, on occasion,
it happens to both the best & worst of us.
Do yourself a favor,
if your mind is playing tricks, lying and twisting
logic on a stick
do not let it convince you.
Usually in Life nothing is purely,
black nor white,
but a shady color of gray-
life lies in-between.
Do not let yourself fall beneath,
a overwhelming sea
of negativity & anxiety
Do not despair,
fight the brain trap.
the bus to come by, on time.
waiting for a short stop-
the moment to yank the string.
the destination which develops me,
like an old black and white photograph,
of who i used to be.
Waiting on a healing groove.
waiting on an Angel’s song.
waiting for the Buddhist monk, to finish chanting.
watching the Muslim praying at Sundown.
Searching for God or My Goddess,
beneath the olive tree.
Religion divides too many of us.
Ripped apart to pieces and yet,
the soul stills knows where to go.
waiting on a healing groove.
waiting for illness to depart,
willing for it to leave my lingering heart.
Wanting to be more whole,
then being torn apart.
watching the world from a safe distance,
as it argues among itself,
as war breaks out,
as poverty reigns- sometimes there is so
so much pain,
I begin to feel hollow-
as a slender reed
like an empty Egyptian
my words themselves begin to bleed.
Like an outpouring of
random graffiti, i make the Tag-yet
even I do not know-what the Hell I am saying.
on the healing groove.
Frustration mounts…and eats my soul away.
Devouring me from the inside out.
I will never be able to be normal,
and I don’t know what that’s all about….
I’m just another random head-case,
trapped beneath a system of doubt.
a broken down merry-go-wheel ride,
of social security benefits and random poverty.
I would love if just one of my nameless,
faceless republican family or friends,
would attempt to live high on the horse,
with my government income of barely $6,000.00 per year.
They make such a big deal out of,
that fact that i should be “grateful” for benefits…
Grateful, for what for being even more poor, than everybody else?
I make way less than min. wage
I should have never gone to college anyway.
Or the University, what a joke!
My older sister skipped all the academics,
worked very hard on her way to the top, too.
But she did not play a fool,
as I tend to do.
I wasted 19 years of my life in college or at the university.
I cannot help but be bitter by it.
Now what i owe in student loans, could buy a fancy house,
which i will never afford.
I do not even qualify to get hired at a min. wage job.
My mind today is set on meltdown.
So much frustration,
Ever hear of the so-called – law of attraction?
According to this ever popular theory,
I choose a mental illness
to become my entire life-story.
I choose a life with poverty, crime, being a victim of
both a few violent muggings and a couple of rapes.
Somehow, this was all decided by me.
I say bullshit to that.
I am not flowery or happy today.
Today I am just me, brittle, bruised and feeling
Apparently, they only called to say that they,
“like” me, but not enough to actually “hire” me.
Whipee! I have gotten my fair share of phone calls,
that fall into this category.
She wanted to keep my application on file for future
reference-(so they reject me again? oh boy!) Sure is how I answered.
She also wanted to pass my application along,
to other agencies that they work with-
Sure, great, I said-
as I could feel my brain on meltdown,
the feeling of dread…nobody ever is going to hire me?
As much, as i try to remain focused and positive,
I keep getting massive and multiple rejections,
at each and every fork in the world…
At the end of our conversation, she could not wait
to tell me what an “awesome artist” I am.
Very talented. Not everybody is so lucky.
as an art therapist, i really disregarded, the compliment.
I felt literally-and still feel-that that is total bullshit.
I did not verbally say that to her,
instead I explained as an Art therapist, I believe that
Everybody has the power to make art- all it takes is practice.
No, no, no she assured me, “You have a Gift.”
Well yes, I do. I have the gift of never finding a damn job…
I’ve been looking over 18 months.
I am either OVER-qualified OR UNDER-qualify.
I can never get it right.
Getting so frustrated,
just wanna give up this dumb fight.
were on the telephone,
when i mentioned my husband and self-
maybe seeking an annulment
in order to get a portion of my social security
She was furious with me.
She gave me a huge angry lecture,
citing the importance of Love,
and the sanctity of marriage.
It come out of nowhere,
this fright train of outrage.
She stream-rolled me, with
I would not end my marriage-
over such a small amount of money Emily.
this she said with words made of bees
not of honey….her quick judgement of me.
This extra amount of money would be
in fact quite insignificant to my sister.
Yet compared to us and all of our struggles;
Her and her husband live on the high horse-
She herself has never even acquired a
4 year bachelors degree-yet she has made it-
achieving much, in the world of hospital administration.
She was lucky to achieve so much with so little education-
just the sweat of her brow and making it up the
food chain by sheer hard work and lots of luck.
Myself, I hold a high school diploma, a bachelors degree in Fine Arts,
and a Masters Degree in Education: Art Ed and Art Therpy-
I also hold an unraveling mind
trapped beneath the glass,
of mental illness.
I too, have worked very hard for everything that life has given me.
The difference of course, is i roughly earn
only 6,000$ per year from ssdi.
She I am sure earns well over 50,000$
plus her spouse also works-he is a republican,
a private businessman.
My spouse works too, yet barely above
the minimum wage. He cuts meat for a living,
a honest job-yet does not count as high paying.
I do not consider us to be “greedy”people.
I also do not consider us to be”godless”.
he is an atheist and I am Wiccan.
She was attacking me,
verbally on the grounds of the sanctity of marriage & her ugly limited,
view of her God-not mine-not understanding-
I no longer follow her bible-
the law she swallows,
things we were taught as small children.
These beliefs instilled in her outrage,
that i could consider ending a loving marriage
just to earn a increase in monthly benefits…
She has not walked a mile in my shoes.
She does not understand how difficult it can be-
to subside on only $6,000 for an entire year.
Yes, I am married.
Yes, I do love my husband.
But is it wrong for me to want better for us?
When i have been looking for even a part-time job,
for over 18 months….
had countless interviews,
but no callbacks…
is it wrong for me to end a formality,
a paper contract between he and i,
that would increase my SSDI benefits,
by over double the amount they are now?
Is it fair to my husband,
that he pay for everything
and I do not pay my share?
She advised me to simply quit smoking.
This is a brilliant idea-
I often encounter by non-smokers.
As if it were simply that easy to stop?
Besides even if I did quit that would only free up 350-400$ per month.
Nothing like, the over $800 in benefits, i lost
by marrying my heart, true love, the man of my dreams.
At the time, I did not think losing,
all that money would be so hard.
At the time, just over 2 years ago,
I thought i would earn a nice income-
from a masters degree in art therapy.
but i did not.
and now, my older sister berates me,
on the importance of the sanctity of marriage,
and the strength of marriage vows.
Please do not beat me up with guilt,
over your limited and narrow definition of God.
That is not my God nor my Goddess.
We believe in separate things entirely.
Your ugly, limited view of God and all that
that must contain.
Beating me up with the Religion of my childhood,
Trying to prevent me from committing an unknown sin.
Your God is not my God.
My God does not sit upon a shelf,
trapped between ivory pages
of a little yet well known book-
that is used in many purposes to do more harm than good.
My husband and self, both have many-yet different-emotional scars from our own childhoods.
Sometimes these differences really tear us apart.
I have my reasons-which i will not disclose here-(read my memoirs recalled madness: a personal account of manic-depressive illness by Emily Sturgill 2013-available off Amazon.com for more specific details-)
Anyways, i have my reasons, that
if somebody physical grabs me in anger or is violent at all,
during an argument, i will pretty much cut that person out of my life completely.
If that sounds insane or extreme, I apologize.
However, it is based on how i was raised-that a man should never hit a woman,
nor lay his hands upon her, while in a state of anger/violence.
This is a well-known trigger of mine, that my husband,
has mistakenly set off on separate occasions.
For his part- part of his past were living with parents,
who argued/screamed and yelled everyday.
Thus, his trigger is arguing. When and if we argue,
and he feels bad enough to yell or scream – he tries to grab me,
and force me to listen.
The intimidation of being grabbed
in anger really sets me off,
i never call the police or press charges.
i simply go into flight or flee mode.
i pack my shit and leave.
persons without a history,
of childhood abuse, physical violence,
in my case both parents equally were messed up
until 7th grade when my Dad sought therapy.
My mom did not go into therapy until i was 18.
So i don’t even wanna go there-she was also bipolar.
She is the one, i take the most after.
Dad had OCD among other issues.
But after he got got help, things were better
for a time-at least better he and I.
Mom was another story entirely.
Anyways, about 2 weeks ago,
i was feeling threatened physically by my husband,
so after discussion with 4 different older strong women
in my life i decided to go stay at
a battered woman’s shelter.
Because today is the 2 year anniversary
of our wedding and because he apologized
between 5-7 times, i agreed to comeback home.
its a work in progress.
but im hopeful , since he’s agreed
to attend therapy his own self-
and face some of his own inner demons.
the hidden truth,
is that which haunts me…
everybody thought we were the perfect happy couple…
and I? how could I explain to our friends-our loved ones-
about The Dark Times….
about the hidden Truth?
That i married a classic-type of abuser.
That my beloved husband,
who i “loved” dearly was not only less than ideal,
but i was paranoid fearful of his anger. Of his angry outbursts.
That frequently, i felt unsafe, even during lovemaking.
I was scared he may attempt to kill me.
And i do not know why.
the fear seemed irrational, like another delusion of my bipolar mind.
Until a day two weeks ago where he admitted to “fantasies”?? I’m not sure what you would call then,”ideas” or “plans”?
That if his life ever got bad enough, he would fall back on the notion
of a murder-suicide.
by the way by murder-he meant me specifically and suicide
i guess was for him-not only was this a horrifying thing to say to the one woman who loves you-
it also helped me reach the realization, i was in constant danger.
I’ve been hiding out at a battered woman’s shelter.
i finally feel safe again.
it took some skill even in getting here because i had no money and no car.
but i finally made it Saturday afternoon.
I blame myself for not leaving sooner.
but in oh-too-many ways it was easier to stay.
i am grateful now, for my infertility issues.
that saves me from a lifetime of interaction
with a husband who is crazy.
I am so very devastated-that it had to-end this way,
but it was only getting worse. Now i am facing loved ones with the Hidden Truth.
they do not understand how hard it is to admit….you are a victim.
that somebody scares you half to death.
that this man you “loved” is merely a shadow of his true self,
the side made up of complete anger and irrational darkness.