my phd in pain

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👇🏿 ain’t got no time for that? press play for the radical radio recording ✨


“i’m just grateful i’m still alive.”

i say it as we sit, the two of us, in that ass-straight-in-the-dirt kind of way, on the drive. she’s smiling at me and nodding, “yea.”

i don’t think she’s got it. “no. genuinely, i’m really grateful i’m alive.”

for why? for the sole fact that i am in such a dark, depressing place this past winter, i am having thoughts of killing myself. not because i want to die, never because i want to die, merely because going on living feels impossible. and no, not in that “i’m-possible” kind of bullshit way. in that “this living is fucking agony and i can’t imagine going through much more of this lived inferno, my fucking ‘phoenix burning to ashes lived cremation’ than i already have.”

it’s a lot.
it’s too much.
it hurts like fucking hell.

i sit, white jeans press into the gravel and dirt bits on top of cement, and really feel the weight of what i’ve said.

yes. truly. no take-backs. in that no bullshit this is straight from my heart-space genuine way, i’m glad to be alive.

for why? for the reasons that continue to pump through my blood as the moments gather and collect and i grow beyond my suicidal thoughts, and those dark winter days. for the ways in which i’m coming alive again. for the ways that i’m experiencing, knowing, and sensing the world again, my body again, all of Life again. for the me who is coming out of her shell. for the me who is a baby colt, born anew, and is testing this new-to-me landscape one wibbily-wobbily step at a time. for the me who is growing strong cantering legs and has begun to look outside the wooden planks of her stall. for the me who whinnies, frolics, bucks, and kicks when she gets let out to play with her herd. for the me who can feel, can sense, is beginning to know that Life is going to continue to deliver magic, reverie and delight in surprised doses as her days Living continue.

for the me who knows again…

the smell of wild roses after a spring rain
the crunch of a pine cone on bare palm and sole
the sound of a river rushing, rushing, rushing
the smell of cedar, sap of fir, wet dirt
the taste of mango chutney
the soft, squishy new buds on tips of trees
the color green
cold. hot. dry. wet. loud. quiet.
the wiggle waggle of a furry friend come to greet me
the twisted delight, tickled fucking peach through: twinkle lights, sparklers, stickers, candy sugar highs with friends 💙

“truly, i feel like i’ve lived forty two lifetimes worth of pain in thirty six years.”

do i need medals, trophies, badges of honor for it? no. my dissertation for that phd in pain is my lived experience. and i’ve had enough; enough of the pain for forty two lives… in thirty six years? that’s a lot for one person. for one tender-beating-precious heart.

and so i sit, ass in the dirt, landed here. feeling sun peek from cloud cover beam on my face. feeling wind swirl around and kiss-caress my arms. feeling my body, the whole of Her, landed here in this moment with my dear friend, in genuine gratitude for my beating heart.

because i know where i am just months ago.
because i remember the pain that is.
because i know the lives i live in thirty six years.
because i remember the pain that is.

and i see ahead of me a more beautiful horizon.

one that is full and rich with living and meaning. one that is turned up in full color, full sensation, full lived experiences. one that i can actually say i’m looking forward to.

because if i were dead,
none of this would be true.

i love your bits,

xxo ~k 🍃🌻💜

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