Millennial

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photo origin
1
Your favourite thing
Was words;
Lucid,
Opaque,
Provocateur,
Provocatrix,
Lurid,
Woman.
2
You always told me
To tear down
My walls…
But I wasn’t
Really listening
(It’s hard to hear
When you’ve got it figured out)

Loss changes us ….
It’s vivid …
The brevity of time
Can be seen
Frail and flawed
3
I’m just a millennial
I assumed we …
Would live forever
Or at least until
The world ends
But for
All I “knew”
And all I was “entitled to”
I didn’t know
About time …
About a pill in a bottle
A bullet in a gun
Or a chemical reaction
Called epilepsy
These things had never
Had anyone’s name on them…

Loss Changes us…
And now
I have a lot of words
I didn’t get to use.

But I finally wrote this one down
I took down my walls
And I started to live…

Bullet

Hard sole against the rail
The night air cold through the trees
Smokers in the back ground
Laughing
In the park sharing drinks

The train, a black mass of heated machinery closes in
And I think …
‘Hail satan
It’s the closest thing to a god
Man has probably ever made’
And step out

I feel the air move against me
As time slows against the racing of my heart

I don’t see hippy holes
Or Friday night lights
I don’t have any regrets

I see
What I’ve always seen
What I couldn’t escape
I see
49 acres of woods
That I ran through growing up

I see a peach hanging perfectly
In an orchard somewhere in Georgia

I see the shores of Normandy
I see presidents dying
I see a race to the moon

I see a hospital
With a patient screaming
a family crying outside my door
I hear a man coughing
His bed banging against the wall
His lungs fighting against the fluid

I see a bridge
A book
And water

I hear
a train moving
I see blackness
I feel cold

27

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An empty room
a note on the table
Sylvia Plath,
And
Vizzini wrote about depression
about overcoming it
Only to commit suicide later…
Hemingway,shot himself …
Fitzgerald died from a heart attack
But depressed
Believing none of his work meant anything…

For writers
Depression seems to be a shadow
One that we can’t escape

That’s what I thought of …
Being the oldest sister
It shouldn’t have surprised me
Eric had always
Been very active
And from your first impression
He seemed to be fine
He’d gone to Africa after college
To work on journalism
And well drilling
Then moved to New York
I have three of his four books
Mostly poetry…
Some essays
A die hard romantic
And lover of children
And families
But he always had this
Shadow
I remember one night
He kicked back three drinks and some liquor got in his car
And disappeared for four days
Refusing to answer his phone
Or messages
I was about to call a close friend of his
To see if she’d heard anything from him
He never disappeared like this
It was more common of his
Brother
Disappearing
Smoking pot
Showing up once a decade
in Some random ER
But not Eric
Eric would be the one who stayed
With you in the ER

I finally received a text message
From him …
He just needed space
He’d said
“don’t worry I’m too vain to kill myself”
I couldn’t believe it
“That’s the ones who do …dumbass”
I answered angry
And then because I hate confrontation
I Tossed the phone in my top drawer
And waited
He didn’t say anything

He was the most personal person
You’d ever meet
Always wearing his heart on his sleeve
Unashamed
But there was a confusion
Even when he was younger
He wanted to connect to people
wanted to help them
But also loved his own space
Not isolating
So much
But keeping to himself
His only friends
Were women Mostly
He understood
Them
And fell for them
Over and over
And they fell for him
A photographer
With a heavy British accent
She knew him more than anyone
A screen writer who wrote him regularly
While she was away
And several others…
They all shared something

I remember he used to preach
When he was younger
And after our father died
He just stopped
He didn’t care a whole lot for religion
Or church
Everything was so charged
Everyone had an opinion
But he wasn’t like that
He just kept them to himself
Rather
He tried to understand people
And until they gave him a reason
An absolute reason not to
He gave them a chance

I was
Sitting in my window
Smoking
When I got the phone call
I knew …
And my heart sank
Into my chest

The night before his
27th birthday
Eric committed suicide
I went to his apartment
Sharon was there
The photographer
Reading old letters
He’d always typed out letters
And mailed them to everyone he knew
A reason wasn’t required
All he needed was to be thinking of you
And you’d get a letter …
She had 8 years worth …
So did several others ….
I realized
Then
That’s why he didn’t keep a journal
His journals were just fragments
But his letters were full…
He poured himself out
Hoping to help someone else

I looked outside
It was snowing …
In September
He would have loved that.

For writers
Depression seems to be a shadow
One that we can’t escape
It follows us through history
And we never see
I can’t begin to explain it
I can’t even write it
I’m just a writer
And the sister of
A writer…
Who knows it all too well.
We can carry our shadows
And cover them
We can project them
Or we can try
We can understand
Maybe we can write
Words
That haven’t been said before
And that’s difficult
Because everyone is saying
Something
But if we
Can make that connection
Boldly honest
Maybe it will help
Maybe …
Our shadows
Will make friends
With our demons
Maybe we will make it
Past 27.

Where did it all go wrong?

“You know that feeling you get
You feel you’re older than time
You ain’t exactly sure
If you’ve been away a while

Do you keep the receipts
For the friends that you buy
And ain’t it bittersweet
You were only just getting by

But I hope you know
That it won´t let go
It sticks around with you until the day you die
And i hope you know that it´s touch and go
I hope the tears don´t stain the world that waits outside
Where did it all go wrong?”
Great lyric by Noel Gallagher

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Watch the acoustic video for this below

I’ve had this song stuck in my head
For a couple days now
Depression is not new to me
So when a friend text me
Asking for advice on what to say
Regarding self harm
And suicide ….
To help a friend of theirs
I just ….
I suddenly related
Just be honest give them your heart
Let them know you care
Really care
People can see through fake
I’ve struggled with depression
I’ve struggled with suicide
And fear of just becoming
Another male in our family who commits the act
I’ve fought that
I know that darkness
So love
And understanding
And raw vulnerability
Is the answer
People don’t need fake
They need honest
And that is expensive
But still
Life throws us hope
There is hope
It’s not all dark
We are both
Light and dark
Good and bad
And you have to accept that some people
Talk a lot
And say very little
They take more than they give
They will hurt you
They will not be able to see your heart or feel it
Even when you place it
In their hands
you
Will be hurt
They will be reckless
But these people
Have their own story
And
Love
Is the answer
Compassion is the answer
Boundaries are the answers
It is still better to
Be you
And feel deeply
Love deeply
Rather than trade your depth
For shallow waters

Don’t become bitter
Don’t give up your story
Hang in there
I don’t have the answers
I only know
That we grow into ourselves
And you should never
Be ashamed of your story
And this song
It’s been on mind
So I thought I’d share it

Perspective (what I learned from suicide)

Wingstop
Probably my favorite place for FRIES
And rolls
Their wings are ok too
It was hot
dead center in the middle of summer.
I was planning on going to a movie when I got the text from my sister,
A text that would stop everything
My cousin, maybe a year or two older than me,engaged to be married
A daughter on the way
committed suicide

I want to talk about this clearly
Point blank
Because I’ve been on the brink
And I have struggled with depression

I do not pretend to have the answers
But I can tell you this
I lost two people last year
My best friend
And my cousin
The year before that
I lost my dad

Life is nothing,nothing like we think it will be.

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But you have to keep living
Not in a depressed manner either
But with the understanding
That ANYTHING is possible
It opened my eyes
Now every time I see an auburn football fan I say
” War Eagle” just for Russ.
Because I always drove him up the wall about being a fan.

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I still struggle with depression
It’s a dark cloud
But
I choose to fight
Because
I believe in hope
And the light
I believe it’s worth it
It’s not me

 

 The thing is
If you’re struggling with change
If you’re struggling
You’re not alone
If you feel like you are not where you saw yourself being
You’re not alone
If you feel like you’ve been cheated
You’re not alone
You’re not alone
You are not defined
By your GPA
You are not defined by your job
You are not defined by who loves you
You are not defined by how much money you have
You are not defined by how much of your bucket list you’ve checked off

The important thing is
That you are happy
In your own skin
That you touch someone
That you leave them with good energy
Putting them at ease
That you are the best youthat you can be

I recently realised this
And I really had to struggle with it
But I remember how my mom’s home makes people feel at Christmas
Anyone can touch anything
Anyone can decorate the tree
Bake in the kitchen
Eat the cookie dough
(Burn the cookies)
They feel like they grew up with us
And they are usually more relaxed
Than in their own home

That’s good energy
And mom always gives advice to anyone
Leading off with
” you know what your problem is”
And boom
There ya go
( a southern lady setting you straight)
But I also figured out
I am a writer
I have to write
Everything I come in contact with touches my very soul
And I have to write it out
So I stopped defining myself by my day job and changed my perspective
This is who I am
It’s what I love
I could live anywhere in the world and do this
I remember sitting at work one night and a college kid asked me what I wanted to do
And I looked at him and said
” man, I should be jumping in oceans and documenting riots in Egypt”
He started laughing because he just didn’t get it
” Ethan’s life goal is jumping in oceans”

It’s fine
Don’t expect people to get excited about what you do
It doesn’t matter
All that matters is that you love it
When you get excited
The people you need
Will be attracted to you
That’s when connections are made
So drop your fear
And take a chance

One day I will move
Maybe not this day
But one day
I will have tea with my friends in the UK
One day I will write about drilling wells in Africa
Dreams are good
One day I will write a screen play
Dreams keep you moving forward
But Be flexible to change
It’s how you accept it that matters

I refuse to live in fear
I refuse to feel like less of a person
I refuse to give up
This is my life
And this is mine