The Hide Inside

“You can keep as quiet as you like, but one of these days somebody is going to find you.”
Haruki Murakami

I have wondered how it is to try to understand me when I sometimes do not understand myself. I have put up a barrier between me and the rest of the world. I can and do retreat into the small quiet place inside where no one can get to. I would hide there as a child whenever the world became too big, too bright, too loud. I would retreat there whenever my heart would break at the smallest of upsets, when I could not understand that there were things I just couldn’t understand. Whenever I realized no one understood me, I would go there. When I would do or say the wrong thing, this became my protection, my wall, my shell, my sanctuary. I have never let anyone in.

To be honest, there are times when I like it in there.

In my adult life, during the 17 years that I lived with an emotional abuser. I would go to that place inside myself. In my imagination I created a nice place in the sun on a sandy beach that I had frequented in real life as a teen. I would sit back and watch the river flow, listen to the birds and bury my toes in the warm sand.

This sustained me during the times I could not defend myself because I was not strong enough to even realize I was worthy of defense.

I seldom go there now; that protected place as my life has changed, I left the abuser and definitely I have grown stronger but that barrier remains, the bubble that protects, the facade that makes me seem just like everyone else.

It is only through words on this screen that I type to you through my keyboard that I am able to say this much. My brain is somehow connected better this way than verbally. The words flow right from the source, actually speaking words is not my best thing, but I try.

It has taken me forty odd years to find someone I feel a deep enough connection to not only want to share myself and my inner world with.It is a thirst long overdue sating.

I try to imagine the way I must come across to him. I don’t think he realizes how different I am with him than with other people. I know he knows that I can shut down, he has seen the blank look come across my face, he has watched me instantly withdraw, he has felt my body become limp. He has seen my at my worst, he has seen what I have been able to hide from others, he has seen the exhausted me that can’t speak, he has seen the burned out me that jumps at the slightest sound. He has never judged me or made me feel bad about who I am. He has held me tight and loved the pain away. He has loved me and has tried to understand more than anyone including my own Mother. I still can’t let him in fully and I still can’t tell him in words what I am writing here about I feel. This is a curse and a blessing to me.

It is said that Asperger’s is developmental and I do continue to develop everyday. I have worked on myself my entire life. Writing this blog has certainly helped me in an abundance of ways. I hope to inspire others in this way; you matter–you are loved –you are not alone–although you are special and unique there are others who feel like you–and you can change your life.

♥SBI

Fresh Quotes for Fresh Writing

"Writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia." ~ E. L. Doctorow
“Writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia.” ~ E. L. Doctorow
"Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on" ~ Louis L'Amour
“Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on” ~ Louis L’Amour

All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence that you know. Ernest Hemingway

 

“Your intuition knows what to write, so get out of the way.” ~ Ray Bradbury
 

“Don’t bend; don’t water it down; don’t try to make it logical; don’t edit your own soul according to the fashion. Rather, follow your most intense obsessions mercilessly.” ― Franz Kafka

 

“If you do not breathe through writing, if you do not cry out in writing, or sing in writing, then don’t write, because our culture has no use for it.” ~ Anais Nin

 

 

“Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.” ~ William Wordsworth

 

There is no way that writers can be tamed and rendered civilized or even cured. The only solution known to science is to provide the patient with an isolation room, where he can endure the acute stages in private and where food can be poked in to him with a stick. -Robert A. Heinlein
“You must write every single day of your life… You must lurk in libraries and climb the stacks like ladders to sniff books like perfumes and wear books like hats upon your crazy heads… may you be in love every day for the next 20,000 days. And out of that love, remake a world.” ― Ray Bradbury

 

Ray Bradbury’s Greatest Writing Advice

Believe

You have to believe. Otherwise, it will never happen.
~Neil Gaiman

 

What do you believe? Do you believe in rational notions, in well explained, well thought out reasonable reasons? Do you believe everything has an explanation ? Or needs one?

 

Do you also believe the fairy tales you were told as a child about the things that go bump in night? In strange magical creatures, in aliens? Do you believe in the power of positive thinking? Can you stretch your imagination to believe something you have been told is not real? Can you go where your heart leads and believe what it tells you?

Albert Einstein said that reality is merely an illusion, a very persistent one but a illusion nonetheless. I believe everyone has their own separate realities that are all unique unto themselves and that we do have a choice in what our own reality is. Of course I can’t wish a terrible president away or think happy thoughts and start to fly but I can take actions to direct my own destiny and I can believe whatever the hell I want to. And so what  if I believe in unicorns, fairies, talking crows and humans with good hearts I can
If you want to believe that too, you can,  but if you don’t believe that is okay , I still think you are wonderful and it doesn’t make my beliefs any less valid. 

 

Part of me is more rational than the other and I choose which part to believe at certain times. The whimsical one is getting more power all the time as I grow wiser with time.  The whimsical side has a much better use for time than the practical side I imagine. 

 I believe that people generally want to believe something, something beyond or greater than themselves. Our time here is so short and the universe is so very big and we are so very small.  

The best beliefs are those which you cannot prove to be true, the invisible ones you hold your heart. somehow I think people lose sight of that along the way, we are told what to believe and not to believe by our parents , our peers, by society. 

I feel I can believe whatever I want to, no matter what, as long as the belief is good and pure and honest, as long as it does not hurt anyone or anything, as long as it does not contradict what my heart, what my soul tells me to be true. I can believe whatever I want to and I can can disbelieve any biased , hateful crap that comes my way. I can choose to believe in the good of people and that there is hope in the world and that with love and cooperation and wisdom to see the truth for its own sake we can all live together and save ourselves from ourselves if we just believe. 

♥ SBI

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Whimsy   (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

Cottingley Fairies

 

The Eyes of the Future

The eyes of the future are looking back at us and they are praying for us to see beyond our own time.

And here we are, it is 2020 and the world seems to be teetering on a precipice hovering over oblivion. Do we continue our slide down or can we save ourselves?

Our bad habits are catching up with us. It’s time to fess up and pay up and work together to solve our collective problems. We do not have the time to entertain the self-serving and the idiots they control. Some deny that the house is burning but we are surrounded by smoke and others are sneaking out the back door with whatever they can get and leaving everyone else to burn.

Hopefully we have finally reached the bottom of this pit that we have dug for ourselves and now we can begin the climb out.

I pray there is not another bottom farther down we cannot fathom.

I have seen an ugliness in my fellow human that in my ignorance I hadn’t realized before. An ugliness I could never have imagined.

These revelations come on like waves, one right after another after another. It difficult not to give in to despair.

There is no time for despair.

We are seeing history in the making and our collective future depends on what is happening now.

There is a disconnect. Those who are in power are very adept at dividing us; we the people of the world. We need to band together and see beyond what years of manipulation and lies have done to us.

We can save ourselves because we must, we have no choice. What is the alternative?

Whatever collective ugliness we harbor pales in comparison to what could be our glorious potential.

Am I too optimistic , or too pessimistic to be realistic?

I have a feeling the eyes of the future will be judgmental. History will not look kindly on us, on our collective malaise, on our willingness to go along with the status quo. Leaving our collective mess for future generations will not be viewed lightly. For as much as our ancestors sacrificed for us, it seems we cannot do the same for future generations. They will curse us I am afraid.

I cannot avoid the feeling of guilt. The feeling of helplessness and the fear of a very scary and very possible future but I have hope.

I have hope and I’m not the only one.

I have hope the eyes of the future will able to see with a wisdom we relics of the past seemingly cannot.

I hope they will overlook our frailties and see that indeed hindsight is 20/20.

I hope they will see an awakening, a willingness to shed our past ways and embrace a kinder, more sustainable existence for us all.

I hope they will see us band together and work towards a common goal: our very existence.

I have hope for that.

❤SBI

Mocha’s School of Kick Ass Mousing

Riding on the cat tails of his recent success in catching a little mouse in our apartment our cat Mocha is now holding weekend seminars in our storage closet intended to teach his fellow cats and other interested parties how to succeed in the exciting world of mousing and competitive catting.
I told him this wouldn’t work and I am eating my words as he is now booked well into July. This is crazy. He has no formal training or licence. I am afraid this is all gone to his head and its already costing me money. He has had business cards made , a website designed and has hired a couple of neighborhood cats and my own daughter to assist him, all with my credit card!

He says not to worry “baby”, yes he called me baby!

He said that once his school gets going he will be making the “big bucks”and that he’ll be so successful that he will be able to pay me back with “a gazillion percent interest” so that I never will have to work again.  Seriously, he told me this.

😀

Heard that story before….

Wish me luck..

~SBI

What the Crow Told Me

A lone crow caws at me from atop a tall tree. The wind tosses my hair into my eyes. I push it away and squint to see despite the rain. And there it is. It looks down on me. As if to say…

“Don’t forget about me. I remain your spirit animal until I teach you what I have to teach you. Silly human.”

And I carry no peanuts, not a one. Not today.

And so it soars off into the unforgiving gray sky and I am left humbled in the rain by a tattered old bird in a parking lot in the first hours of morn.

I would feed them, these birds, every morning at my old job, the one that burned me out. It was only a couple of months ago but it still is very recent in my mind.

My interactions with the crows were my only joys during a joyless day. They became my spirit animal after a similar encounter with one months before the one I just described.

I was sad with nothing to hold on to. I would notice the birds on my way to work. it was wintertime and obviously not an easy life for them. I know from reading and from firsthand experience that that crows which are in the Corvid family along with Ravens , Blue Jays and other birds are extremely intelligent. I admire that intelligence and I admire the tenacity and determination these animals display just trying to eek an existence alongside humans.

So there is was in the same parking lot as before, in the very early morning and it cawed at me and kept cawing. I had time to take out the camera I was carrying and take this picture. I have since had the image blown up and I have it framed in a small frame. It is up on the wall to remind me.

It came to me that I could learn a lot from those scrappy but majestic birds and so I began to carry peanuts in my pocket to reward them for being so inspiring and to maybe give back a little to animals who have had so much taken from them by humans.

The winter came and went and so did spring and summer. My work life grew more difficult and it began to take its toll on me and through me, on my family.

All the while I learned from the crows and I grew tougher and more resilient and smarter. I realized that I needed to escape that job. I am learning that just because I am able to do something doesn’t mean I should do it. Nothing is worth having these burnouts. I have overcome so much in my quest for having a simple life, one just like everyone else despite my Autism. I think I need to work wiser, not just harder. I don’t need to torture myself. I need to celebrate myself. And I need to seek help. The crows are seldom alone, they thrive in groups, they are social and therein lies a strength for them . This, among much, much more I have yet to learn.

I am fortunate to have such wise and resilient teachers.

❤ SBI

Crow Quotes

When a crow says an intelligent thing, chickens may laugh at it. This is the laughing of the sand castles at the powerful waves!

Mehmet Murat ildan

Crows are incredibly smart. They can be taught five things on the drop.

Robbie Coltraine

I saw a crow building a nest, I was watching him very carefully, I was kind of stalking him and he was aware of it. And you know what they do when they become aware of someone stalking them when they build a nest, which is a very vulnerable place to be? They build a decoy nest. It’s just for you.

Tom Waits

“If men had wings and bore black feathers, few of them would be clever enough to be crows.” ~ Rev. Henry Ward Beecher

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Crow Symbolism and Meaning

Corvidae is a cosmopolitan family of oscine passerine birds that contains the crows, ravens, rooks, jackdaws, jays, magpies, treepies, choughs, and nutcrackers.[1][2][3] In common English, they are known as the crow family, or, more technically, corvids. Over 120 species are described. The genus Corvus, including the jackdaws, crows, rooks, and ravens, makes up over a third of the entire family.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corvidae

The world between two pines

A mystical magical foray through the foggy forest

“The richness of a moment comes when it’s both full and empty at the same time. The truth is, we live simultaneously in time and timelessness.” ~ Ram Dass

Where does reality leave off and imagination take over? Does it matter?


All at once the light of overcast day turns to fog as we step between the two tall pines and descend into into darkening wood.

I proceed with an uncharacteristic reverence, my steps slow and deliberate.  

The air is damp. Tufts of fogginess elongate, curving and curling between the trees trunks like an asp lending an air of mystery to the atmosphere. Although I am inside a natural area that’s inside a large park, I could be anywhere. 

There is a sense of timeless here, of ancientness. I can smell it. The pine needles, the mud, the old leaves, the moss. Ancestral memories encoded in my DNA have been awakened. I feel oddly at home, every twist and turn takes me deeper and deeper in. 

My usual gleefulness is gone, replaced by a watchfulness. Where my causal romp through the woods has become more than causal. I notice my steady breaths and I notice the birds are quiet. It seems as everything is at a standstill, but me.

It’s as though I am walking through a dream. The haze grows murkier with every step, my footing has been lost in the fog. The path twists and turns and suddenly I find I have lost the path altogether. The mossy floor feels like soft clouds and I imagine I am high in the sky feeling the cool fresh air. I feel so relaxed and at ease , I am compelled to sleep…

Then I spy glossy black wings in the corner of my mind’s eye and hear the cawing of the crows…
…suddenly I’m back on the ground slipping in the mud, catching myself in dreamland and jolting myself awake. 
Better watch my step…haha.

 

~SBI
All photos taken by me on The Wildwood Trail in Washington Park in Portland, Oregon. 

 

 

 

 

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