Thursday, May 19, 2011

Proof of Love

I was digging around through my desk drawer, cussing a blue streak at my utter lack of organization as I sorted through piles of post-it notes, envelopes and loose paper, when I came across this little poem I wrote while my teenage son was in rehab.  I wrote it after he overdosed and almost died.  My group leader at Daytop Rehab had already lost his own son to heroin, and I'd become obsessed with the very real possibility of my own kid dying.  He'd already come very close.  So I wrote it out of me, being a firm believer in Woody Allen's line "I don't get angry.  I grow a tumor instead."  This is my way of preventing a tumor!

Proof of Love
Rebecca O'Donnell

What sad remembrance
Clouds my soul
When I think of my son?
Me, a split-pea mentality
Silly and smiling
A pod full of good memories
Hiding the truth from myself
Just a vacant vegetable
Of ridiculous rhyme
He, lost and alone,
Ate himself with rocks
And cactus and hydro
A child needs proof of love
All I offered was empty sockets
Limbs, womb, seed now gone forever
Torn away by its own misery
And self indulgence
Without my boy, all is grey
Summer has gone
And winter holds sway

We all have these dark and terrible moments.  When you're being torn apart by your own shit storm, find some way to purge the misery before you start beating yourself or cutting, something I also did.  Remember Annette Bening in American Beauty, when she slaps herself?  That was me.  Art is a great release.  Whether you can draw or write well or not, art is still a great way to get it out before it consumes you.  Writing, drawing, sculpting, mechanics, cooking, gardening; anything can be an art.  Lose yourself in creating something.  It's like antiseptic and a bandage on a cut.  Create and heal when you're suffering, my friends.  Create and begin to heal.

Love, R

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