Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Chair in the corner

Two weeks ago my family convinced me to travel to Johannesburg and to see a doctor; red warning lights were flashing on my dashboard..
He diagnosed me with severe depression, severe anxiety and very high stress levels in seven out of eight areas of my life.
I had no idea that I was depressed, nor - as I now realize - did I have any idea what depression was, nor how long the signs had been showing, nor how debilitating, devastating and awful it is.
I am grateful for my new eyes, because I'd like to reach out to anyone in my life suffering from it. Before I lived it and almost suffocated in it, I could never have had even begun to understand it.
Empathy. Love. And grace.
What a pretty green colour the chair.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Who am I

Just back in the sanity. I meant city. Genuine Freudian slip: I never ever thought I'd seek my sanity here, especially after hurtling from here like a bat screeching outta hell, precisely - back then - for my sanity's sake.
Sitting at a Seattle with my mug already cold, the mocha foam dry and stiff like frozen algae, I watch my many faces in the crowd go by.
Half-way through my life, with a tortoise-heavy-shell of choices attached to my back, I have one predominant question that I need to answer before launching into my second-half: who am I?
Only once I've answered that question can I ask, where to from here?
Prayer: please mould me into me, so that I can - authentically - be me.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Morning pages

The cold front buffeted the house throughout the night; I woke to it a zillion times.
The screeching wind scattered pot plants that I thought were quite stable; it also filtered ash (from the bleak-black-winter-burnt veld on the hills surrounding town) through poorly insulated windows and frames, not at all unlike my soul that has been severely sifted these last 2,5 months.
This morning: peace on every level. The wood stove in the kitchen is roaring, warming up the house; I'm cranking it up to the max: snap, crackle, pop.
I'm sitting in my ugly-comfortable chair that's bathed in sunshine directly from the east, where I've gulped down a steaming bowl of green tea.
The wild but beautiful tortoise shell is curled shrimp-like on my lap; I'm about to begin my morning pages: "Dear God, thank you for meeting me here at the pages, thank you for walking me into the eye of the storm..."

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Sap rising

I left in the last light and arrived in the dark; a cloying bout of cabin fever salted by a bigger picture (and longer lasting) existential crisis, caused me to
drive the 22km - through a toll gate and past the neighboring town - to the Seattle Coffee shop at Millys on the N4 highway.
It's good to anonymously sit here with my cafe mocha watching the world go by, not unlike being in limbo at a busy border post.
The petrolport, perched on the side of the N4, is like sitting in a box, albeit with good coffee, of all-sorts.
People watching soothes me; I'm also reminded in the process that our lives are the manifestation of our choices; also that - in fact - there is no future, no past, just, just the present.
I'm about to return home and soak in the bath.
I left lamps on to fade-to-light the winter darkness, and my bedroom fireplace in should be roaring with warmth and firelight.
It's a freezing cold day, the worst - for me - of the winter.
But I'm looking forward to getting back into - relatively speaking - my 'routine', but also to tack in a new direction; the bay of my existence is altered, it's also time to sail out to sea...especially with the sap rising in the trunks of skeletal-bare trees - as spring is no longer that far away.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


Passenger seat.
I don't smoke but I draw, deeply, on a Marlboro blue ice.
I lit it. The lighter mechanism is still warm in the palm of my hand.
It's not in any way connected, but is: I received, rather clearly, again, that I must open my heart wide to life.
Open your heart wide to life. Open your heart wide to life.
So I am. And, as innocuous as it might seem, lighting a Marlboro blue ice and drawing on it is part of that process.
I gulp, deeply, on a can of frosted milk stout; we bought it at the ski boat club perched - in orange checkpoint Charlie light - on the tongue of land between Zinkwazi lagoon and the ocean.
Green light. The toll gate boom lifts. Go!

Sunday, July 08, 2012


Scratchy, unhappy and awash with thoughts, and to escape the (mad) voice in my head that's not me, I open the pages and put down the words. They're not flowing, but I have to put them down one-word-at-a-time. It's therapeutic. And the pages become filled, one-scratchy-word-at-a-time.
I had to escape the heaviness and darkness of Zinkwazi: the room, the house, the bed, the cloying air of the bed-room; they all had me choked at the throat.
Taking the highway slowly south - that's the worst, that I'm in limbo, that my time belongs to someone else, and they don't even know it (but I take responsibility); that I also appear to hang meaninglessly in the air, a piece of light-weight litter on a transparent current that only my Creator can discern, waiting for universal chess pieces to be moved, and the next step - of the path through the forest - to be lit forward.
At Salt Rock I moved beyond the enormous northward creeping (towards Mordor) heavy-dark cloud bank and into the light.
But I'll order another coffee, and with less morbid fecundity I'll watch the world go by.

Saturday, July 07, 2012

To the moon and back

The sun's long gone, so has the perfect beach-weather day; it's been replaced by darkness, a strong-and-isolating-and-ripping coastal wind, also a subtle hint of rain (please!).
I'm just back from a run, a run against the elements and my unchecked emotions: I ran hard against them and into the-my dusk, and I overcame.
Now I'm sitting on the large couch in an unfriendly - large and cold - holiday home that's on the very edge of the lagoon: I have had my heart warmed here, and made passionate love that screamed blood at the walls because of its intensity-ferocity-soul-tiedness. That's why HERE has meaning, because this is where against all odds I was turned upside down and inside out: it's become the waiting room / departure lounge of my new chapter; and that's on every single level possible.

Back from the run, angry-but-less, I ripped open a maroon-coloured bag of muesli and churned it into a bowl with 2% low fat milk, then devoured it.
That was just before I choked on an egg I'd boiled in another world-life on Thursday night.
Now a scalding mug of green tea with wild berries.
To be followed by another bowl of chicken flavored Nestlé 2-minute noodles with egg; another one. It's delicious, MSG and all.

I passed the morning alone on the beach watching the breakers and strange-with-wealth holiday makers from another province; and basking in the sun, and in my aloneness and my contentment. I needed that.
This afternoon I sat on a yellow towel in front of the ski boat club with Storm and slowly drank two milk stouts while the sun walked home; it was a perfect afternoon.
Straddled between the lagoon and the Indian ocean I was very, very grateful to be alive; and I vaguely counted the pigment-less white spots on my right arm, and noticed the hair growing back on my legs.
As for to tonight, who knows what it holds...but at least I'm grateful that it will hold a lot-less-but-a-lot-more than the intense Saturday nights of my past and youth.
Although I have the mind of God, I have only acknowledged it recently, like on Friday.
Run Forrest, run....

Friday, July 06, 2012

Much later

554 kilometers later I get out of my car and slaver myself with the humidity, warmth and bright coastal sunshine. I'm in the world I want to be in; I've left behind a brittle khaki winter and a heaviness, dryness and dourness. Here for me is life, and love. Self-love too.
The photo I took as I turned onto the Amsterdam turn-off much earlier, and colder, this morning.

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Sloughing my skin

It's excruciating to shed a skin, and a process seemingly without end when you're sloughing it.
I sit outside a random McDonalds, not far from a therapist in another city that had heard and fingered, long ago, the wrenches, twists and turns - and then healing - of my mind, heart, and soul.
I'm waiting to see her, I arrived early.
Driving through this city I passed landmarks and monuments of my previous baseness, now ticks to growth and enormous healing and progress.
Tears trickle down my sun-warmed cheeks (I'm siting outside) and into my lukewarm coffee and free serviette.
This warrior of light is preparing for his journey...and he lighter, leaner, stronger and more powerful. Although you'd never think sLouise-glancing at this driveling sight.