Mental Health

My Mind, My Friend, My Enemy

I’ve always been an intelligent person.  Growing up I always noticed the patterns of things, in shapes and forms, and later in ideas and concepts.  Though homeschooled, I did well and ended up making a high of 1350 on the SAT, 31 on the ACT and then gained a final GPA of 3.69 earning my Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Texas at Arlington.  I’ve never not had an agile and competent mind.

my mind always been a source of pride for me

In fact, as might be readily apparent, my mind always been a source of pride for me.  I have always lived in my mind, and I, as do many intelligent introverts, prefer the company of my inner demons and angels than the company of similar beings around and external to me.

I’ve relied on my mind in my career and in my hobbies and in my relationships, utilizing it to make friends and succeed and enjoy the small nuances of life.

But then, about 5 years ago, agitated by a very painful experience leaving the church I grew up in, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder reared it’s tenacious head and what was my favorite gift became my special curse.  My mind – my friend – became my enemy.

Where once I could listen to the internal dialogue with pleasure, now that dialogue became a flood, a torrent of anxiety-inducing madness.  Where once the waters of my mind were fairly tranquil and fair, now I drowned in a shit storm, chocked by anxieties and compulsions, depressions and inanities.

Such is the life of someone with OCD.  I do not expect to be healed of it.

Now, 5 years removed, two of which have been spent in therapy and on medication, my mind has become my frenemy: neither/both friend nor enemy, that weird uncle that you have to be related to, but which you really don’t want to be seen with.  It’s a humbling existence: having to rely on something that might very well decide to betray you at the drop of the proverbial hat.  You never know when your day will be roses or thorns (often its both).  Clarity-of-mind and the mind-fog have become close bosom-buddies, and both like to fuck with you and your fears.

Such is the life of someone with OCD.  I do not expect to be healed of it.  In some ways, these days, I don’t know that I want to.  I just want to learn how to live with it.  To exist with it.

Because maybe that weird uncle is me.

(featured image source)


Easter Sonnet

Within the blackness of the night His body lies at rest
Alone within His catacomb, amidst the quiet chill
His skin is pale and bled of life, no air’s within His chest
He lies in state, forsook by God, within the lonely hill
She weeps within the waning night, alone before the morn
When death is at its blackest tide and hope’s forever lost
But when the pitch is at its peak the dawn is at its bourn
And when despair is at its end there’s light to melt the frost
A ray is cast upon the tomb; the stone is split and rolled
And death is turned upon its head, defeated by the Cross
The Lion stands within His How and strides upon His Wold
Victorious in life and death, in laughter, pain, and loss
He comes to save His enemies with grace and love and death
In love He’s raised in human blood, in human life and breath

Blank Verse

Transitory Dreams

All my dreams have slowly slipped away
I stand before the massive maw
Naked in the fog of future’s present past
Memory confused and lost

Hope has flown beyond the setting sun
Night has come with beasts in tow
Clouds preclude familiar silver light
On a darkened rocky path

Life has lost its special taste and joy
Complexity confuses all
Color fades beneath the darkened clouds
Vision is removed

I am frozen in decision’s grasp
A slave of choice’s hold
All my paths are open to the void
Curled on the floor

(featured image source)

Soundtrack of a Castaway

Soundtrack of a Castaway – Shatter Me

There once was a little boy who was strong and courageous, but there were many around him who were stronger, so he was controlled.  Though he should have been free to be a child and to dream and to grow, instead he was calcified and frozen in a premature adulthood.  An old soul, he wasn’t allowed to be young and he missed much of what is normal and good in childhood.

Then came the pain of separation and of mourning and of loss and all he wanted and all he feared was the shattering.  He loved the darkness but he needed the light.  He needed the light to break him, but he feared that it would destroy him instead.  As he spun in the madness of his mind he ached for the pain and he ran away from it as best he could.  He was of two minds, both pulling him apart.  He sought the balance of that cracking tension.

For he knew that true life, true freedom came not in the glass sphere of dogmatism and fear, but in the open air, in the risk of flight, in the flood of material existence.

Shatter me, or else I’ll die.

“Shatter Me”
(feat. Lzzy Hale)

[Verse 1 – Lzzy Hale:]
I pirouette in the dark
I see the stars through a mirror
Tired mechanical heart
Beats ’til the song disappears

Somebody shine a light
I’m frozen by the fear in me
Somebody make me feel alive
And shatter me
So cut me from the line
Dizzy, spinning endlessly
Somebody make me feel alive
And shatter me

[Violin Drop]

Shatter me!
Somebody make me feel alive
And shatter me

[Verse 2:]
If only the clockwork could speak
I wouldn’t be so alone
We’d burn every magnet and spring
And spiral into the unknown


[Violin Drop]

If I break the glass then I’ll have to fly
There’s no one to catch me if I take a dive
I’m scared of change and the days stay the same
The world is spinning but only in gray
If I break the glass then I’ll have to fly
There’s no one to catch me if I take a dive
I’m scared of change and the days stay the same
The world is spinning but only in gray


[Violin Drop:]
Shatter me!
Somebody make me feel alive
And shatter me!

(featured image source)

Sonnet, Wheel of the Year


As winter’s rage o’erwhelms the silent earth
a whiff of life, a whisper, is exhaled
beyond the grip of ice on rimy firths –
A herald of the death of sorrow’s Hel.
She strains and groans against the fading veil
for in the twilight glow the prime is birthed
between the knees of rolling mounds and vales
to usher in the realm of love and mirth.
He drops amidst the blushing waters’ flow,
she pulls him to her life-supporting chest:
upon the swollen bosom of her hills
He sucks and feeds, a helpless, squalling bairn.
As darkness ebbs, the swelling morning grows
upon the wholly crimson lamb and rose.

(featured image source)


Love is Enough

Soon we shall die and all memory of these five will have left the earth, and we ourselves shall be loved for awhile and forgotten.  Bu the love will have been enough; all those impulses of love return to the love that made them.  Even memory is not necessary for love.  There is a land of the living and a land of the dead and the bridge is love, the only survival, the only meaning.

– Thornton Wilder

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