Long Dark Tunnel

'Life is like a painting by Monet...To understand what it is you have to view it from a distance.'

Years ago a close friend took me to a Monet exhibit and as we gazed at the huge paintings that little phrase came to me like a thunderbolt. My world had been going a bit crazy back then...Health was an issue and between the treatments I was in court twice, sometimes three times a week (Another story for another time)...And I was beginning to see the life I'd lived more clearly because of the years that had swiftly gone by. Even more years have passed, children have grown up, friends and relatives have died, the hatred and anger that once drove me to continue has...Mellowed.

Slightly.

The world was seemingly becoming more civilized and then, well, we all know what happened during the last election and all of the atrocities which have continued on since. I actually believed this country had a future and now...Now the whole world seems to be balancing on a razor blade and we're slowly bleeding to extinction. Recently my father died...My sister and I cared for him to the very last and the official cause of death was 'Failure to Thrive'. I'm not really sure what that means other than he just gave up trying to live.

It's easy to do...Quitting. For a decade I quit the human race and found solace in anything that would numb the pain and desperation I felt over the choices I'd made, the mistakes which branded me in a light I didn't care for and the whole wanting to die thing was always a constant thought in my head. It was really the worse decade of my life and not just because of the abuse I was doing to my body but, thanks to some people who actually cared, who were willing to show me what friendship and love was all about, I went to rehab and (Painfully) cleaned up my act. 

Of course that meant facing my mistakes sober and that...That was a trip. I honestly can't say how I did it, really...I marked each sober day with a line on an erasable board while those around me were continuing drinking and seeking out new drugs. The one great lesson I learned toward the end of those relationships: Do not let anyone have access to your 401K or stocks or checking account because one day you'll wake up with nothing and an eviction notice. That and working at a place that couldn't understand that handing me checks for $00.00 doesn't help encourage me to stay working there...I remember that night realizing this is what they meant with the whole 'Rock Bottom' phrase.

Time passes. There were moments of fear and loathing, but there was also a new desire to remake my life, what was left of it anyway. I've honestly wanted very little in this world, not riches or fame, had them and didn't make me happy...Making a difference in a person's life, that was all I wanted to do. Having purpose, meaning...Love. Not just words but meaning. I've seen what people of wealth do and it's not always nice. They can buy and sell those around them as if they were nothing more than pieces at a garage sale and the saddest thing of all, those people allow whatever pride they once had in themselves to disappear as they became more and more dependent on the money chain. 

Which is where our world is today. Some justice is starting to come to those who have been abused and misused as people slowly discover the powerful are only as powerful as we allow them to be. When a person or society refuses to be bought off, the powerful become mere humans. Fallible. Accountable. Criminal.

We all make mistakes and screw up and there are those who will never forgive or forget or even try because they have lost their own souls, but I'm not talking about them, I'm talking about those whose jobs are suppose to represent the people, all the people, to protect the innocent, to help the helpless, to be the nation we were led to believe we were...I can forgive someone who has wronged me or made a joke at my expense or even taken something valuable that I owned...Forgiving leaders who censor free speech, who take away the rights of the people and dictate a whole new agenda which is nothing more than another dictatorship, that I can't forgive.

And neither should you. 

This administration wants to take away the rights so many LGBTQ individuals have fought for, many have died and continue to die every day, just because they want to be able to be themselves, to love someone, to be considered 'Normal' instead of a 'Freak of nature' or the title of some self righteous asshole's church service, tossing out scriptures they probably know (If they had any real education on the matter) falsified by the early 'Church Leaders', words meant to inflame hatred and violence in the name of 'God' and call it 'Love'. 

I am not going to back down from these pricks. I will continue to be myself and while there are sites where certain rules apply, I will work within those rules. 

Everybody who knows me knows who and what I am. They have taken the time and effort to find out for themselves and I will always be there when they need me as they have been for me...There are always those who threaten, shout, and promise to kill me in the name of Jesus and I continue to say 'I'm not that hard to find.'

Death doesn't frighten me. Never has. 

Failing myself and not standing up for those who can't...That's the only thing I fear. 

Right now does feel like I'm in the middle of a dark tunnel. I look behind me and I can see a light but it's a trap...To head back in that direction is to accept failure. There's another light up ahead, a lot dimmer than it had been and it's further than I feel I can actually reach, but giving up is not an option.

Don't. The future depends on those of us who can remember what the taste of even a small amount of freedom was...The generations who have never known this feeling deserve the chance at achieving some happiness. There are some young people out there making a splash and I hope they continue forward in their endeavors...

...Those of us who care for this planet and the good people on it have a duty to help them.

We all have gifts to share.

I guess I'll just keep using my art to rile up the haters.

later.

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