Category Archives: the rounds

Canis Lupus Peripheres – A General Overview

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Mother” redirects here. For other uses of “mother,” see Mother

C.L.Peripheres
Image, “Dark Breath,” a project by Linda Caracciolo Borra

The peripheral wolf (Canis lupus peripheres) is a canid native to the seat and remote suburbs of the Pittsburgh metropolitan area, Florida, and New Orleans. It is the smallest member of its family, with males averaging 92–113 kg (205–250 lb), and females 36–38.5 kg (79–85 lb). It is similar in general appearance and proportions to Canis lupus campestris, or Steppe Wolf, but has a smaller head, narrower chest, shorter legs, straighter tail, and human hands in place of paws. Its winter fur is long and bushy, and predominantly a freckled brunette in color, although nearly pure white, red, or brown to black also occur.

Within the genus CanisHomo, the peripheral wolf represents a more specialized and similarly non-progressive form as its smaller ancestors (the call-girl and the enabler), as demonstrated by its morphological adaptations to hunting itself, its more manic nature, and its episodic mixed-affective expressive behavior. It is a social animal, travelling in dysfunctional families consisting of an abusive pair, accompanied by the pair’s offspring. The peripheral wolf is typically an auto-predator throughout its range, with only itself[1][2][3] posing a serious threat to it. It feeds primarily on well whiskeys, cocaine, lithium, caffeine and nicotine though it also eats halušky, prepackaged microwaveable meals, and garbage.

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Image from The White Deers

The peripheral wolf is one of the world’s least known and poorly researched animals, with probably less compassion and empathy given to it than any other wildlife species. It has a selective history of association with humans, rarely having sensitive or serious attention paid to it and hunted in most self-reflective situations due to its bipolar and depression inducing deliberate self-harm behaviors, while paradoxically being respected by itself during moments of idiopathic lucidity. Although the fear of the peripheral wolf is prevalent in, primarily, her offspring during adolescence, the majority of recorded attacks on her young have been attributed to alcohol induced aggression, the intergenerational cycle of violence and/or borderline personality disorder induced externalized aggression.

Approximately 62% of peripheral wolves have attacked people, and this is not unusual due to the limited availability of Therapy Wolf International resources. Furthermore peripheral wolves are relatively few and, while they do live amongst a society, have learned to trust themselves and others utilizing the few available resources when they are accessible. Hunting and trapping has reduced the species’ range to only vestige memories of its region, though this relatively widespread range has left an increasingly positive legacy which means that the species is not threatened at a visceral or emotional level for those who maintain its existence. Due to the suicide of the peripheral wolf, however, its physical form is no longer verifiable and is therefore classified by the IUCN as Extinct.

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A Mother’s Day Letter

Dear Mom,

We both know what today is; it is May 12, 2003…

I am in the “treacherous stairway” at the Tricou House at 711 Bourbon St. I am carrying a large black plastic bag of wasted food, left over and careless tourist nibbles poshly pushed off their plates to say, “oh, no, no, this Andouille sausage simply will not suffice, it is just too spicy.”

Twenty-four hours into the past I am on the phone with you, your voice is dragging the way too much alcohol, too many narcotics, too many anxiolytics, too many all at once taking control from a tongue and mechanically touching random ridges, bumbling over bilabials, stumbling a cough and glottal stop…

“Mom?

(I can hear breathing, shallow, breathing like seeing the leaves or gnats pirouette on the sidewalk and hearing nothing, hearing no thing, breathing like a wind vain, breathing like a hemispherical cup anemometer spinning only when I look away and it’s only a squeal, a squeak off in the periphery.)

Tomorrow I am working, I won’t have time to call, I’m sorry, I want to wish you a happy mother’s day, how are you?”

(I’m praying for the first time in 12 years.)

“Fine, I’m, somewhere and doing- ok.”

(I can hear your deep breathing, your dry mouth and too much saliva collecting around your tonsils. I can hear your eyelids like a diver splashlessly clearing water. I can hear your lips turn down, I can hear your mouth unable to open wide, lips like waiting over petals, lips like turning the page in a book that I’m not sure I will keep enjoying)

“You don’t sound very well.”

(You sound like you are dying, you sound like a voice I will never hear again. You sound like I am now lost–losing you.)

“I think I took the wrong. Something pills that shouldn’t mix. The Dr. said I’m fine, I love you.”

(“I love you.” The words come out hollow in a Milton form of vacant chaos… There is nothing I can say to convey how much I need you.)

“Happy mother’s day, if I find time- can I call you tomorrow?”

(It is already 24 hours into the future, I know this is our last conversation.)

“Yes. Tomorrow. Thank you, I love you. Don’t forget.”

It is 24 hours into the future, 5:15pm, May 13th, 2003. I am in the “treacherous stairway” at the Tricou House at 711 Bourbon St. where a woman, Penelope, is said to have lost her footing decades ago and fell to her death, I am carrying a large black plastic bag of wasted left overs, careless tourists nibble poshly at pushed off plates to say, “oh, no, no, Oysters Evangeline simply will not suffice, how is this even palatable to these southerners?

I can feel my mobile vibrate in my right pocket, there isn’t anything I can do. It vibrates again, 5 more times. A voicemail is left. I’m pouring water down the cobble stone hallway flushing vomit into the gutters of Bourbon St. Errol, the porter, hands, under table, to me a shot of Glenlivet and with index finger to lips he exhales with a tongue pressed against his alveolar ridge, “shhh.”

My throat and belly is burning.

My phone is vibrating again.

“Hello? Dad, what’s up?”

(It is 3 minutes into the future- I can’t even breathe to speak)

“Are you busy? You sound like you are at work?”

(It is 2 minutes into the future- my boss is just telling me, “go, you’re covered, whatever this is, go home, you’re fine.”)

“Yes, but I have a break, what’s up?”

(It is 1 minute into the future– I am nearly asphyxiating.)

“Sit down, light a cigarette, if you can- light two.”

My father is on the other end of my mobile in broken words, no sentences that I can understand, “your mother,” a ringing presents itself in my ears, temporary tinnitus, “it appears to be suicide, she hanged herself” (I didn’t call her), “are you ok?” (I didn’t call her, I said I would), “I will call Molly, Jason? Are you there? Don’t go anywhere, I’ll have Molly come get you. Just stay where you are.”

It is 5:25pm, May 13th, 2003. I am at the corner of Orleans St. and Bourbon St. watching a kaleidoscopic of vomit and tears pool into fractals between my feet. A man is approaching me he says, “can’t be that bad, and this, this you can not do here.”

“My mother,” I can barely gasp, “suicide, mother’s day, I didn’t call her.”

It is 5:30pm, May 13th, 2003. A man is taking his hand off the shoulder of a crying boy, he is walking backwards and trips over the curb. Speechlessly he mutters something rhyming with compassion.

Through a haze of a chiaroscuro, almost sfumato, blur of tears, white hyperventilation stars dance in my vision and color, for the first time in my colorblind life, is all I can make sense of…

Neon, cardinal, agate quartz, Ares red.

Vitreous humor, bone, teeth, lightning white.

Acorn, hawk, bear, haire, duck brown.

What I am is a fragment of jumping leaping skipping falling and flashforwards, flashbacks, flashups and downs and flashsideways. (I didn’t call you.)

I am in the passenger side of my 1987 Chevrolet Cheyenne like leaves carried from corner to building, to hawk eyes, and birds, to lakes, and rivers, to corner by your death breath rattle.

I am bones strung together by too thin wire in an opaque translucent skin sack centripetally, centrifugally, moving like a marionette guided by a motion puppeteer and vacant.

You are not gone, you cannot be.

“It’s a suicide, she hanged herself.”

It is 7 years into the future. I am on my road bicycle leaving my North Side apartment to go to work. The route I take is from the North Side up California and down Allegheny Ave. When I hit the tail end of the hill on California ave. I am, always, all ways, experiencing the exercise high that people talk about. I do this 7 miles to work and then 7 home.

I am at the peak of California’s hill and my mind is nothing but an LHC of thoughts I couldn’t even begin to describe. The distances between all neurons are collapsing from minute distances to–no longer measurable. The bike is the road is the path is the commute to work is the responsibility of a job is the reason I have a job is the reason I live in Pittsburgh is the voice…

That shouts from within to ask me, “why?”

“Why did you leave New Orleans 7 years ago anyway?”

(I can only imagine what the residence on Lincoln ave felt when they saw a solitary cyclist maudlin and weeping over his handle bars.)

“Because… It should have changed.”

I am convincing myself that moving back to Pittsburgh, staying in Pittsburgh then somehow, someway, somewhen– you’re suicide did not happen and if it did, I can reverse it.

It’s 5 minutes into the future and my truck bed is full of everything I own. It’s 30 seconds into the future and I am driving down Route 376 to catch a connecting road to take me to New Orleans again.

And In the French Quarter I see your face
in ever middle aged women in passing.
My face turns down, embarrassed, you
take a picture of me while blushing,
I tell you to “stop, put that thing away,
you look like a tourist, turn it off.”
In the backs of women shorter than my
slouched shoulders – I see you. Black hair,
curls, walking away from everywhere I am.
I want to grab them, embrace them all,
saying “stop, no, wait, let’s go home now,
there is the market we must stop at first.”
You wave a hand waving away my face
telling me “it’s just a picture, I want some
thing to remember you by, this town is
the oldest form of beauty, there is a gallery
I want to see, I’ll be back in a minute.”
At my desk I sit with cigarettes, myriad
cloves driven into an orange, Nag Champa,
like a scent mobile, a swamp in the air,
a typewriter, Abita beers, my cell phone.
At night it stays on, plugged in, waiting
for you to call saying, “I’m sorry, got lost,
which street do I turn from if I’m on
Chartres? Are you busy? I found this
wall, the hurricane must’ve damaged
it. I took pictures, it has a wonderful
scene in it. The rocks, displaced, are
children playing red rover. Or maybe
it’s a willow tree. No, now that I look
harder – these rocks, it’s two lovers
but the man is kissing himself, she’s
not really here. He’s pretending. Well,
I’ll back soon, I love you, don’t wait up,
make sure there is still some whiskey
left over so I don’t have to run to
the store at 4 am. Goodnight. I love you”
With the sun and hooves clopping upon
Decatur St. each morning my eyes adjust.
Sleep rubbed from the corners of my face.
2 more years blink with my open balcony shutters,
since your death, since we last spoke.
I keep wondering when you’ll be
back. Still and calming words. Telling me
“I’m sorry, I didn’t know how much you
needed me. I didn’t think this would hurt
you this bad. I just needed a break. This
was just a joke. Some paperwork got
mixed up. I’ve been on vacation. Can you
forgive me? How have you been? Are
you teaching yet? Are you in love?
Can I hear some of your most recent
poems? Do you still look away every time
someone makes you smile?”

John is now convincing I am convincing myself that there, really, is nothing more besides grief and mourning that I can approach this. John and Blake are convincing I am convincing myself that people exist in our minds and hearts. That we project who we believe who people are onto them, onto things they left behind, onto ourselves. You’re dead and no one can change that. It has been 7 years since this happened and I am now stepping slowly out of denial’s fire escape.

It is 2 years into the future and I sit on my flat garden roof at midnight on mother’s day. The anniversary of your death–mother’s day.

I couldn’t ever hate you, I couldn’t ever stop crying, I can’t ever stop mourning the loss of our future together.

The thing is– I do carry you within me, I carry your heartache, your bipolar, your depression, your suicidal ideation. But I carry something more; I carry what you left between the lines, what dad came to be. I carry your heartache in the pocket next to my notebook, I carry your bipolar, your depression, your, “danger nights,” next to my phone with Emily, Kitty, Blake, John and my father on speed dial. I carry your suicidal ideations on my back, like a mule, away from razors, away from drugs, away from guns, away from alcohol.

I carry my mourning into the evening tonight hearing you whisper that, “this year will be better than the last,” because– it always is. I am tumbling, like an echo, far away from the pain of feeling I could have saved you. I am mossless and tumbling away from–could have, should have. You are gone, you are missed, you are loved and you are right… I can get better at being me even if it means tackling our genes.

I love you more than the day I opened my arms, slap footed and screaming bloody on your chest. I love you more than every ocean visit we took.

Happy Mother’s Day…

PS. If you were here… You would know…

The Codependent Paradox part 1

You really don’t think suicide is a selfish act?

She asked…

I left work at 4:45pm that day. I stood at the bus stop outside of school waiting for the 14 down Ohio River Blvd.

It was 21 degrees out, and may as well have been inside as well when I spoke, pacing, from telephone pole to sewer grate waiting for the $2.25 ride home…

(Is anyone aware of an HTML code to indicate internal voice? Or is it simply the parenthetical aside indicative of a fourth wall break wherein this case the wall is egoic?)

(Suicide is a selfish act.) I, parenthetically, voiced inward…

I doth protest too much, methinks.

Methinks this makes me a hypocrite.

“Suicide is a selfish act.” Is an incomplete thought. It is an, at best, equivocal thought that provides us with a few paradoxes of choice, independence, codependence, definitions and projections or reality etc.

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dictionary.com

Huston… We have a mistake…

Suicide is a difficult subject to approach for all; first hand– I know this.

“Wherever you do not want to go is where you will find him, he is hiding behind your pain. Embrace your pain and you will win this game.” – Guy Ritchie, “Revolver.”

Suicide, as we’ve defined above, is the voluntary, independent, taking of ones own life. Or, if you prefer, etymologically it’s reduced to, “self killing.”

When I think, again, of the phrase; “suicide is a selfish act.” I am left, less, with the desire to define and understand suicide as a concept and more, rather, at understanding selfishness.

Now let’s complete the thought…

Suicide is a selfish act because the person committing suicide isn’t thinking about the feelings of those left behind.

What I’ve come to refer to as The Codependent Paradox. As Melody Beattie has been telling us for decades– we’re to be Codependent No More… And I agree with her.

But like an irresistible force paradox we are left with a conundrum.

A person who wishes to commit suicide is selfish because… Because it will hurt me and the loved ones they’ve surrounded themselves with. This sentence is inherently hypocritical and paradoxical and states a few conclusions…

  • 1.) If a person is to be codependent no more, then suicide, a free will, independent action, is an option.
  • 2.) Suicide is selfish because it makes my life more complicated is, quite possibly more selfish than suicide.

Katie is often quoted as saying some variation of, “I love you and, thus, why would I ever want for you what you do not want for yourself?

The Codependent Paradox is simply this… A person wishes to kill themselves but must think of how this will effect the living. What if suicide is the best option for the person? It is, however, their reality. Furthermore how can we love someone and respect their being without respecting their every choice?

I’m left with more thoughts than answers at the moment and will come back to the subject after I’ve spent more time with it.

Thoughts?

How I Learned to Love Byron Katie (Or, “How Reality is a Feedback Loop.”)

A little over two years ago, Blake Ragghianti

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…was sitting on my living room couch expounding on music, poetry, Jeff Buckley and, “oh,” he says to me, “get a piece of chalk and write this on your board… I’m not too certain about this yet,” he adds, “but I believe there is something there. So write down these four questions, we need to think about them…”

  • Is it true?
  • Is it absolutely true?
  • How do you feel about it?
  • Who would you be without it?
  • Turn it around.

That’s it?” I asked him.

Yes, well,” he stammered, “I believe so, I’m not sure that’s all of it though.

What Blake was referring to was his recent discovery of the methodology of Byron Katie; simply entitled, “The Work.” It was a methodology that he would soon perfect, a methodology that he would attempt to get certified in. As far as I am concerned, his mastery of the questions is certification enough for me.

Who is Byron Katie?

Besides someone who looks like she’s about to try and sell you an arthritis bracelet…

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Many sources give her the label of a “spontaneously enlightened being.” This is something that I don’t agree with entirely; which is to say that it is something that I do not entirely disagree with. Recalling the story from memory now—Katie was in a massive state of depression for much of her life and as she lay on her bedroom floor (for she felt undeserving of a bed) she realized suddenly that nothing that she believed was true.

Is this true? That everything we believe isn’t true?

Uncertain.

I know that what I believe is absolutely a product of my, and only my, what they call, connectome.

[For an interesting and poignant video on what a connectome is I refer you to a Ted.com lecture featuring Sebastian Seung called, “I am my connectome.”]

In other words I know that what I believe is a product of my subjective reality. My beliefs are a product of my story and mine alone.

I believe that the smell emanating from The Original French Market Restaurant at the corner of St. Philip and Decatur Street in New Orleans is in the top 3 most beautiful things I have ever smelled. My friend Kelly adamantly disagrees with me.

Does this make this a beautiful smell or not?

A person walks into a room and tells a joke. Simultaneously I laugh and Kelly does not. Is the joke teller a funny person?

I believe that a Sage and Gin Gimlet is a delicate and sensual libation that shakes me upside down with a single sip. Would Kelly think so? Does this make this drink a perfect drink?

I could listen to Al Bowlly for hours on end. Does this make him a good musician?

I believe that, again, my beliefs are a product of my history, my story.

This is the basic foundation of Byron Katie’s work. Because, if your beliefs really are only a product of your story then what you have are a myriad projections onto the world around you. And, accordingly, the world around you will reflect who you truly are. The world around you will reflect your story always, all ways.

In other words – everything is a cloud.

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(What do you see?)

And if the world reflects who you truly are, if everything is truly a projection then we create our own reality.

Byron Katie’s questions are a means to accessing peace for the troubled times. For, as she states, when our beliefs are leading us on an exciting and beautiful path they don’t need the Work. Why? Because they are, “already working for us.”

Let’s try an example here then. A deliberate example. Something I have wanted to work on for a while now.

My mother should not have committed suicide…

Yes, that’ll do just fine for an example.

(Those questions that Blake had me write on my chalkboard weren’t exactly right. And though I will be working through an example of the questions right now, you can directly download instructions from Byron Katie’s website here or here.)

Is that true?

The only way something shouldn’t be happening is if it isn’t. The only way something should not have happened is if it didn’t. Otherwise I would be simply arguing with reality and I’m not that arrogant.

How do you think, feel and react when you believe the thought, “my mother should not have committed suicide,” and she still isn’t alive? She still did commit suicide?

I miss her, a lot and often. It’s one thing to have to mourn the loss of a person, it’s an entirely other thing to mourn the loss of a future with them. I feel a sense of anguish, shame, guilt, fear, anger, depression when I think about her committing suicide instead of getting help. I’m angry that she didn’t call me or call someone. I’m just fucking hurt.

And who would you be without this thought? Imagine your mother, she’s passed away and you are incapable of thinking the thought, “ she shouldn’t have committed suicide?” Who are you and what is your relationship to her now? Who is she now?

I am still me. I am living my life, existing. Still attempting to follow my excitements and joys. When I think of her without this thought… Without this thought I respect that she is passed. Without this thought I am ok with her being gone. Without this thought I am living in the present and excited for tomorrow. Without this thought, she is still very much alive in my heart.

At which point comes one of the self-contained epiphanies… It isn’t my mother’s suicide that is disturbing me, it is my thought concerning her suicide that is disturbing me.

Now, turn it around to the other…

My mother should have committed suicide…

Now provide at least 3 reasons why this is more true than the original statement.

  • She was wrestling with demons so much larger than her it was as if Cain and Abel were trapped inside of one body. A diagnosis of Manic Depression, Borderline Personality Disorder, an extreme alcoholic, cocaine addict. Notwithstanding the 3 warrants out for her arrest.
  • She existed in a hell that only she could see and she was on a steady decline. She’d tried every therapist, every pill.
  • It was her life, and it is, as I believe, the ultimate act of free will to commit suicide.
  • She’s at peace. Even the Catholics changed their doctrine, “suicides” no longer go to hell. According to the Catholic church people no longer, “commit suicide,” but rather, “die from suicide,” as they would from any other disease because the suicide has had their mind taken by illness.
  • This list could extend much further I’m certain.

Now, turn it around to the self

I should not have committed suicide…

  • Because I am not my mother.
  • Because I believe in the 50% rule
  • Because I know the pain I have gone through, I know the pain that those living have gone through, I know what those people around me would feel if I did.
  • Because I know that life gets better all of the time. Regardless of depression or pain, I have seen many more happy days and exciting days that I have their opposites.

I certainly miss my mother, there is no question about this.

The point is, however, that Byron Katie’s method allows you to get to the core of the material that hurts you the most. You learn that your reality is a conglomeration of your projected beliefs and that when you are believing something negative– it isn’t true.

I’ve learned not to argue with reality, to “love what is,” to let go of that which is emotionally damaging. To keep what is emotionally healing and to learn from my past.

Every time I put something through, “The Work,” I’m given a unique perspective on myself and the world within which I project and live.

But then again…

Maybe none of that is true either…

“Hallowed be my Life, Part I.” (Or, what my mother wanted to title her book…)

She was born in 1953, a date I can’t remember.

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What she talked about her early years involved the minimum. Stories of abuse from her father. A repudiating mother. A time, a story, she told me time and again, “he came in when I was in the bathtub, belted me, water went everywhere.” The grandparents I knew were kind, caring and contradictory to my mother’s idea of them.

They came from a generation of workers, steel mill workers, engineers and cold, emotionless. My grandfather worked for Westinghouse. He was an inventor. Always, all ways, making something viz. a cement mixer from a metal trash can on a rotating motor, a pressurized air container, a welding machine the size of a shoe box.

The list goes like a truck of oranges unloading on a steep hill. His workshop, schematics for any and all things scribbled in pencil everywhere; like Zampanò’s apartment.

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A few year ago I found, in the blue crate, a child’s diary from when she was younger. It was everything typical. Which boy she was, or wanted to be, kissing. Which friend she’d lost to gossip. The thing is-

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– she wasn’t special.

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She was a teenage girl who wanted to fit in and fall in line with the popular crowd. She wanted to be noticed, noticeable, liked, entertained and full of laughs. The diary of hers stopped being written in in high school. And then the smiling stopped…

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The smiling of hers became encased in the reliquary of a dust footprint on the moon.

She’d known who Shirley was her entire life and was never told who she was. She’d known Judy too, but never who she was.

Coughing through the cigarette smoke pouring from her fathers fingers, July 20th, 1969- everything changed. Everything began it’s 34 year long deterioration.

I wonder if they never told her, would the switch inside her have lain dormant and untouched? Would her sickness have stayed sleeping like a panther unbothered, patient and waiting for its own death? Would I have ever been born? How am I so different from her when I so often feel the same terrors coursing through nerves and memories as she felt?

The Panther.
MZD

The panther paces.

Waiting reminds him that clarity is painful
but his pain is unreadable,
obscure, chiaroscuro to their human senses.

In time they will misread his gait,
his moon mad eyes,
the almost gentle way his tail caresses the bars.

In time they will mistake him
for something else–
without history,
without the shadow of being,
a creature without the penance of living.

They will read only his name.

They will be unable to perceive
what strangeness
lies beneath his patience.

Patience is the darkest side of power.

He is dark.
He is black.
He is exquisitely powerful.

He has made pain his lover
and hidden her completely.

Now he will never forget.

She will give birth to memories
they believe he has been broken of.

He smells the new rain,
tastes its change.

His claw skates along
the cold floor.

Love curled up and died
on such a floor.

He blinks.
Clarity improves.

He hears other creatures scream and fade.
But silence is his.

He knows.

In time the gates will open.
In time his heart will open.

Then the shadows will bleed
and the locks will break.

The Four Children

Shirley Cavanaugh.

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The Call Girl and the Cop.

The Call Girl…

And the brain tumor.

Shirley had a validated four children; Forest, Ruth, Jim, Judy.

Forest was an early death, age 8, scarlet fever or similar early death illness, and is buried in a cemetery in Florida.

I’m 13, my family is visiting his grave. I don’t feel anything, no one expects me to. My mother is crying, my father is supporting her, my sister and I waiting by the car. A family vacation to visit my mother’s side of the family. The side of the family that spilled the crazy in the deep end of the gene pool. There is a wedding for someone, we visit Disney World, we visit my dead uncle’s grave. My mother’s brother.

I’m 15 years old. Jim is a name I’ve never heard, a name my mother has never heard. They’d spent they’re whole lives searching for each other for Jim to show up at our house in Monroeville, Pennsylvania. I look out onto the lawn. It’s my mother. Her twin.

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I am at least 4 different ages and Aunt Judy, I wish I could have been closer too as I grew. All contact information on my uncle Jim, my aunt Judy– lost.

The Call Girl and The Brain Tumor.

That second youngest child wailing in a dehydrating meow. Soiling in a soiled crib. The wooden bars, the pillow, the teddy bear, a baby; a diorama of neglect.

By the time my mother was found she was in poor health; in baby terms, that’s worse than poor. They found the name of her mother from the neighbors who found her in that crib…

Shirley Cavanaugh…

Gone.

(My ten year ago self would, now, mutter beneath his abused breath; everybody leaves; attachment is meaningless.

But this isn’t true is it? In this journey, this pathway to understanding therapy and self-help as an adult one of the most important lessons I learned came from reading Deepak Chopra literature…

(I will often use the term, “esemplastic” throughout this blog to describe the cathedral of therapeutic intellect that I have devised; familiarize yourself with the term and concept. And also realize that everything is connected. All of what you have learned and value in literature, mind, heart, emotion, cognition &c. are all just houses you drive to, restaurants you eat in, bars you drink at, friends you laugh with- this is esemplasticity (if that is an actual word, I’m uncertain) at it’s finest. Nothing is separate. And everything influences everything else. See also: the Noosphere. See also: Limbic Resonance. See also: the Collective Consciousness. See also: I am, at heart, a skeptic and understand much of what I have faith in is pseudoscience. Useful ideas do not require scientific validation for me to utilize them.)

…from Deepak Chopra I learned the Law of Detachment which states that,

“in detachment lies the wisdom of uncertainty… In the wisdom of uncertainty lies the freedom from our past, from the known, which is the prison of past conditioning. And in our willingness to step into the unknown, the field of all possibilites, we surrender ourselves to the creative mind that orchestrates the dance of the universe.”
http://www.chopra.com/laws/detachment

/tangent )

Shirley was gone. And Ruth was given to the next, available, of kin– Arthur and Elsie Horensky; the people that I would grow to know as my grandparents, that my mother grew to know as her parents.

It is July 20th, 1969

Neil Armstrong and Edwin Aldrin are stepping out of the lunar module Eagle, My mother and her parents are sat flat, anticipating with the rest of the world in front of a black and white TV set.

Ruth is sixteen.

Sixteen years old,” her father coughs through the smoke of a Doral Doral cigarette.

The thing about some adoptions is – if you keep it close and in the family – no one has to know about it. That old expression – How do you know who your real daddy is? Because your momma told you so – that’s this; just in reverse. Who do you know who your real mother is?

Because your father is about to tell you, “now’s as good a time as (cough) any.

My mother’s mother was Shirley Cavanaugh, my mother’s great aunt’s name was Elsie Horensky– Grandma.

You’ve been gone for years now, I still miss you. I’m glad that we had lunch before you passed away, that I had the chance to tell you that having you as a grandmother is something I wouldn’t have survived without. You are wonderful to me.

Elsie and Arthur played the role; The Parent Game.

The thing is,” he muttered…

The Call Girl and the Brain Tumor…

You know that woman? Shirley? Down the street some? The women in the hospice with the brain tumor now? That’s your real mother, and Judy? Your friend down at Winkey’s Diner? That’s your sister. (cough)

Eight months old and my mother lay emaciated and dehydrated in a forgotten crib in some abandoned room; the perfect recipe for a feral child – this, is how Ruthy Cavanaugh became Ruth Elza Horensky.

What did Shirley go through? What did her mother go through? And her mother? It’s so often the parents who create this sort of conflict and fistless life fight.

But when my mother turned 16 and the men landed on the moon – what was thought as a simple step for my grandparents was a forced and faithless leap for my mother –

My grandfather, he lit another Doral Doral cigarette, inhaled deep, scratched the arm of his favorite couch and pointed, as Neil and Edwin step out the Eagle, at the TV screen screen while muttering under his breath the only thing he could possibly say in this time to comfort my mother…

“This sure ought to piss off those Russians…”