I had a serious case of the blue meanies today. That's what I call it when I'm deluged by a tsunami of self-loathing and life despairing attacks. All sides converge on me in a liquid rainfall, and I drown for a bit. It's a common thing that is particularly malevolent in us insecurity addicts. August has been a tough month of blue meanie attacks, and they all culminated into a firestorm today.
It could be because of my memoir FREAK coming out in such a short time. We're slotted for a late November, early December release. The publication of this book, whether it proves to be lucrative or not, is going to change my life forever. My family are not going to be happy. Some of them are very dangerous people and I am imagining violent revenge scenarios, many of which involve some sort of sexual deviancy coupled with dismemberment. I am already familiar with the sexual deviancy and that's scary enough. The dismemberment is hopefully all in my own paranoid head. Truth be told, I'm scared. Physically, mentally, emotionally terrified. These people are capable of monstrocities and I'm legitimately frightened of what they might do. But the book is too important to let fear stop its release. I want my story to help people. I know it will, and I'm willing to do what is necessary to get it out to as many as I can. I owe it to all the other little Beckys out there, both grown and pre-pubescent, who've been beaten or had their uteruses shattered and cigarettes put out on their scalps, and to the ones, both male and female, who've had it so much worse than I did. I want to help and I'm going to do it, no matter who wants to harm me.
But I'm still scared.
I think it began with a letter from my son. He hasn't contacted me in seven years. I forced him into rehab when he was fifteen and he still hates my guts. Called me a cunt many, many times; said he wished I was dead. Broke my spirit and my heart, and that damage caused me to become suicidal for the second time in my life. As before, I resisted the soft grey dream of killing myself and I'm very grateful about it. That was three years ago. This recent letter states a wish to re-establish a positive relationship with me, even though he is still "waiting for me to apologize for all my mistakes with him." I love this letter, even though he still hasn't contacted me again and it's been a month now. This is the first connection with my beloved child in a long, long time. I have it sitting in pride of place by my photo of Charles the Man, my stepdad.
The rest of August has been eventful as well. My mother, who lives in a nursing home in the MidWest, has advanced Alzheimer's. She's recently begun to relate all sorts of gruesome tortures, like chopping off people's hands, grinding them up and making them eat them. Really sick shit. That might be where the dismemberment fears are coming from. Her health and mind are terrible things to witness, even over a long distance phone call. She's only a five-minute drive from my sister's house and the staff at the home are excellent, but it's still tough to not be there sometimes, especially when she tells me how much she misses me and wishes I'd come back. My own fears, financial hassles, health problems and a cracked tooth have added to the mess. Worry set in, the earth opened up, and I was swallowed whole.
Here's my mindset of today: I was working with two very talented artists/friends, the usual Monday get together of creativity and cameraderie. I loved it, every minute of it, as I always do. Few things are more stimulating to a passionate artist than being with other passionate artists, creating. We had a blast. But it's exhausting and I hadn't slept much last night. Insomnia's very common when I get worried about anything. My defenses were down, and good ole' self-doubt grinned and pounced. Easy prey.
I looked at my one good friend and suddenly thought, "He thinks I'm full of shit. Oh, hell...they both do. They're just putting up with my presence. They're too nice to ask me to leave. They don't want me here. I'm a piece of shit to them. They're the talented ones. I'm just a forty-eight-year-old loser and they're young and cool. They have their whole lives ahead of them. I've pissed mine away. They look at me and think, 'What the hell did she ever do? She's never succeeded at anything. Why does she think we give two shits about her opinion? Why is she even alive?'
Jesus...they hate me."
I'm grinning as I type this, but that is legitimately what I thought and felt. It's like the early days after my divorce, where I was so screwed up in the head, I truly believed my own hideous ugliness would cause people to crash their cars if they saw me walking on the street. The same illogical thought processes hit me today. The gentle plow horse called Rebecca's Psyche suddenly turned into a bucking bronco, the reins were jerked out of my hand, and the screaming panic ride began. It took five hours and my darling roommate's patience and understanding to help ease the maelstrom.
But you know what's great about the Blue Meanies? They end. Like sunshine melting a long winter, they do eventually end. You have to be your own sunshine, though. You have to recognize that you have that power as well, that you're not limited to only the negative, even though the negative sometimes holds sway for a long fucking time. We are, like everything in nature, a series of seasons. Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer: golden sunshine and frigid ice, black clouds and silver linings, all in one intricate, multi-layered and eternally fascinating package. I wish, many times, that tornadoes didn't strike, or that ice storms wouldn't chill my very soul. But no matter how bad things feel, or how worse they sometimes get, there is always light on the horizon. There is always something to warm us again. We only have to look up and see it.
I got away from the eternal night of terrible relatives and gobbling, greedy users. I escaped that war zone; found fertile soil in which to plant myself. I am creating again. My friends love me. My roommate loves me. My darling daughter Rhianna adores me. They are my aurora, my dawn, my blush of early morning light. They help me to see my own worth and it is formidable. Despite my own inner voice and its occasional bitchfest, I am worthy. Very worthy.
So fuck the Blue Meanies. Sure, they took a big gnarly bite out of my ass today. They'll leap and rend again when my defenses are down. But that's okay. I weathered the storm, and the ground's even a little richer than it was, drenched and full of life. You take the bad with the good. I'll just shovel this recent pile of shit onto a bed of roses. You take care to do the same, all my friends out there, whenever the Blue Meanies grin with a bit of you in their teeth. Bite the little fuckers back.