Reasons to go on: Poems, part 5

Reason to go on: Survival Reaching out Reaching out into the darkness I catch at emptiness. Feelings cannot penetrate the armour plating of my thoughts. SecretsShh! Don’t breathe a word – not a syllable to a soul, share my secret, take my burden as your own.Shh! Listen to me – not a word to pass your lips, share my secret, have my troubles as your own. No-one to share my burden, share my troubles, help shoulder the crushing weight off-loaded onto my narrow back. Shh! Shut down my brain – just a breath will pass my lips, extinguished in a silent scream. Note: people have told me I’m a ‘good listener’ and over the years I’ve been asked for advice. I don’t mind but I do find that this can leave me quite depleted in my reserves to care for myself. Trust “Just let go,” the joker cried, “I’ll catch you.” or maybe not, I thought my mind in conflict;

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Vanity. Is it a matter of survival?

I am making a photo montage for our Family Gallery, something I enjoy and consider time well spent. This one is all about my husband and me over our years together. This morning my husband asked me to remove an 80s photo of him in which he’s wearing tracksuit and white trainers. His reason – he doesn’t want to be reminded that he wore white trainers. I told him he was vain, and he agreed. We laughed about it and later he said it was OK to leave it. It got me thinking The montage had photos of me carrying loads more weight than I ever thought possible. Years of mental health medication had put stones on me – upwards of 50 lbs, or 22 kg – call it what you will, it’s a hell of a lot of weight. In some I stare blankly, cheek by jowl with others of me smiling, taking an interest, being involved with life.

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