Free your mind

“Flow with whatever may happen, and let your mind be free: Stay centered by accepting whatever you are doing. This is the ultimate.” ― Zhuangzi

Mental health has been at the front of my mind these past few weeks.

Learning more about me, remembering that I cannot control everything, trying to go with the flow and remembering I am not my depression in particular.

Realizing that I cannot control how others act or treat others is a big one for me. Something I realize I need to learn is when to speak up and when to sit down and listen.

I sit back and watch the world go by. Should I speak up? I question everything.

En Vogue – Free Your Mind

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White Snow on Green Needles

White snow on green needles
Fresh with the blush of after life
The evergreen sags with the weight
White snow glistening with false pretense
Harmonious chaos
A dance
White snow on green needles
The dusk of a dawn
Grey skies blanket the scene
Wisps of smoky Crystal’s
Falling into place on
White snow on green needles

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See You On The Other Side

“I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo.
“So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

On Tuesday, January 21, 2020, I watched on as a brother passed to the other side. We weren’t blood related, we didn’t even meet until we were in high school. That didn’t matter.

Anthony “Tony” Forbes was an amazing person. A huge teddy bear of a man. A proud father. A best friend. A brother.

Tony used to tell me that you never say goodbye – you only say see you later. You see, he was First Nations. In his last moments on this green ball in space, he was surrounded by those who loved him and I have no doubt his ancestors were there to greet him.

Tony

Tony rocking the dance moves in the mid 1990’s

I always knew that he was my heart brother. I didn’t know how much I would miss him. He was always there. We never got to see each much in person in recent years, but he was THERE.

I was honoured when his family asked me to give the eulogy, terrified, but honoured. I and others were honorary pallbearers. His children were there, his two youngest are my godchildren.

I’ve been trying to formulate a post to honour him, but honestly, my thoughts are scattered.

I miss you, Tony. I’m so sorry I wasn’t physically around more. Maybe I would have caught what was happening with your health. I’ll keep checking in on your mom and Roy. I’ll keep bugging the kids to make sure they are ok. I’ll keep Ronnie on his toes.

I love you, brother. I’ll see you on the other side.

Ozzy Osbourne – See You On The Other Side

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Welcome Home (Sanitarium)

This song seems so apropos for the mood of the day…

Songwriters: HETFIELD JAMES ALAN / ULRICH LARS / HAMMETT KIRK L
WELCOME HOME(SANITARIUM) lyrics © Creeping Death Music

“Welcome to where time stands still
No one leaves and no one will
Moon is full, never seems to change
Just labelled mentally deranged

Dream the same thing every night
I see our freedom in my sight
No locked doors, No windows barred
No things to make my brain seem scarred

Sleep my friend and you will see
That dream is my reality
They keep me locked up in this cage
Can’t they see it’s why my brain says Rage

Sanitarium, leave me be
Sanitarium, just leave me alone

Build my fear of what’s out there
And cannot breathe the open air
Whisper things into my brain
Assuring me that I’m insane

They think our heads are in their hands
But violent use brings violent plans
Keep him tied, it makes him well
He’s getting better, can’t you tell?

No more can they keep us in
Listen, damn it, we will win
They see it right, they see it well
But they think this saves us from our Hell

Sanitarium, leave me be
Sanitarium, just leave me alone
Sanitarium, just leave me alone

Fear of living on
Natives getting restless now
Mutiny in the air
Got some death to do
Mirror stares back hard
Kill, it’s such a friendly word
Seems the only way
Of reaching out again.”

Metallica – Welcome Home (Sanitarium)

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Hurt

“Some old wounds never truly heal, and bleed again at the slightest word.” ― George R.R. Martin, A Game of Thrones

It’s funny the things that can trigger memories and bring them to the fore.

A song. A word. An action.

Sometimes the memories are incredible. My friends and I on the beach. Sun glinting in my eyes, the smell of freshwater, the laughing, the ability to just be.

Sometimes the memories are just that – memories. A smell, a sense of déjà vu. A heartbeat skipped in a moment, breath caught up in the wind.

Sometimes, though, sometimes the memories are dark. Lost loved ones – buried six feet under, never to be seen in this life again. Harsh words. Regrets of actions not taken. An ache in the chest so deep it bears witness to the emptiness that lies within. It can be put aside, forced to lay dormant until that moment – a song comes on the radio, sudden intake of breath, burning in the eyes, memories of loss, hurt, anguish.

Why do the hurtful ones seem the strongest? What is it about anguish?

I sit here typing, Hurt on repeat. It is trapped in a loop, just as I am. I missed a step somewhere along the way. I’ve had others tell me that I need to be in the moment. I need to move onMindfulness, they say, is the way to let go of that ache, that stress, that hurt.

But how? How does one forget and move on? Maybe forget is the wrong word, but as awful as my short term memory is, my long term memory is strong, sometimes too strong…

I’ve let myself down. I really don’t know what I’ve become or who I am anymore.  I put on a good show, I act like I know. But I don’t, and I can’t start over, I can’t keep myself from falling away. Everything feels surreal, and yet so incredibly, solidly real.

Johnny Cash – Hurt

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