Catharsis

Let my fears float away
in a hot air balloon
above the dark clouds
and up to the moon

All my pain and the anger
sent up to the sky
the winds blow them gently
as I watch them fly by

Rip up scarred words
and burn them with sage
watch them all wither
and releasing the rage

Try punching a pillow
or let out a scream
digging for gold
or my lost self-esteem

Bang on a drum
play music so loud
don’t need permission
it’s fine; it’s allowed

Write down my thoughts
draw out a sketch
pin them up on the wall
and take a deep breath

Let your grievances lapse
write a gratitude list
swaddle the hurting
while angels are kissed.

I’ve had a more positive day today, so it’s made a nice change and was quite some relief, too. I hope it lasts, but even if it’s just a little taster of how life could be, it’s been good to be able to write something a bit more upbeat.

I wrote this after having a conversation with my counsellor yesterday. She asked me, totally out of the blue, what I’d like to do with all my pain, trauma and nightmarish memories. On the spur of the moment, without giving it much thought, I just came out with, ‘I’d like to put them in a hot air balloon and let them float up to the sky until the balloon is completely out of view.’

(I’ve also just started reading a book by a WP blogging friend, Tamara. If you’re reading this, Tamara, thank you for all your support and for letting me know about your books. I can see so much of myself in them. If you’d like me to link you to this post, just contact me, and I’ll be more than happy to do so.)

I’ve just started to draw a sketch of my imaginary balloon. It’s too late to finish and post it here tonight, but if I get it finished by tomorrow, I’ll add it to this post then.





Not exactly a sketch, but a very amateur attempt at drawing/colouring a picture of a hot air balloon. As you can see, I’m not an expert at art!

Ellie Thompson

Staring at Walls

A sense of numbness resides in my brain.
protecting me from the constant, repeating pain
of losing not a loved one but someone I treasure
whose help and support have been words I could measure

Six weeks of sessions left may sound like a lot
but from my side of the fence, it feels like it’s not
as my mind takes over and makes all the rules
I still dissociate and find myself staring at walls

I go elsewhere in my head to escape the trauma
that exists in my core with me trapped in the corner
with him calling the shots; the bastard, the shit
I’m rarely foul-mouthed, but he deserves all of it

I must try my best with the short time I have left
Try not to melt or disappear when feeling bereft
The time will go quickly; then, they’ll be no more C*
I wonder and worry how much they’ll be left of me

If I find someone new; if I get on the long list
I’ll still wish I was with C*; she’ll be so sorely missed
It won’t be the same as when I first started out
Will I be able to trust again? Right now, I’m in doubt


Now I’m counting the minutes, the hours and the days
like a kindergarten game or a new nursery craze
There’s so much of me still needing to mend
Who will I finally be if I ever get to the end?

*C – Counsellor

Image source – Photo by Aron Visuals on Unsplash

The Day Before

TODAY IS THE DAY BEFORE. It’s the day before I see my counsellor (C). She was away last week, so I’ve had to wait two long, painful weeks for an answer. Tomorrow is the day C tells me whether I can continue to see her after my last session, which is due on the 21st of December this year. Up until now, my therapy has been free under the council-funded Eating Disorders service, where I got six months of treatment, for which I’m very grateful.

However, now I cannot get any funding to continue seeing C under the general health team at that counselling organisation. It’s not just that, but there is a waiting list of ten months to even be considered. I can afford a little, but not the average fee for counselling, which is in the region of £50 – £60 per session. On the improbable off chance that C can continue with me without the ten-month wait, I will have to find the money. As it is, I struggle to make ends meet, and because of the UK cost of living crisis, I can’t even afford to have any heating on this winter. Being cold is miserable, but I’ll put up with it if it means I can continue to see C. I’m counting the hours and minutes until I go for my session tomorrow. I feel absolutely sick with worry.

All that aside, I have also lost three people this week (not through deaths, thankfully.) Their losses have been a blow, nevertheless. I had a Befriender from the Hospice who had phoned me every Friday – we’ve been chatting for nearly a year – just day-to-day stuff, like friends. She called me on Friday to say this was her last call as she was leaving the service to work with her daughter.

The same day, I had a call from my lovely pharmacy assistant, who’s been dispensing my medication for the last ten years, and whom I got to know on first-name terms and almost like friends. She always had time for a quick chat.

Finally, I had a call from Amy, who works for the NHS Wellbeing Team. She told me, very kindly, that because my mental health has deteriorated, she can no longer work with me. I just can’t figure that one out.

I’ve seen images on Google that say something along the lines of the picture below. Sadly, it’s no consolation to me right now. Please, wish me luck for tomorrow and keep your fingers crossed that the decision goes in my favour. I will update my situation either tomorrow or within a few days depending on the outcome.

Thank you to all my amazing and beautiful friends and readers who have been there for me on every step of my recent painful journey. Love Ellie Xx 🖤

(Image source – main photo – Photo by Liza Summer: https://www.pexels.com)

Climbing The Ladder

(Photo by Nick Page on Unsplash)

Drowning in anguish sucked the life out of me
I expressed my personal agony for all to see
I was travelling through the days full of tragedy
Not getting where I really wanted to be

***

Each day spending far too long in bed
Fighting off the unwanted thoughts in my head
Often wishing to be numb, sometimes dead
Now, I’m wanting to live life again instead

***

I want to be rid of the despair, anger and hate
Let them go, leave them standing at the garden gate
There was far too much pain sitting on my plate
Now is the time to cleanse, release and recreate

***

I’ve written my life story in excruciating rhyme
Feeling all the misery like joy was the crime
Feeling deep sorrow for losing so much time
Please hold my hand while I begin the long climb

***

Life was pretty tough when it all went wrong
I’ve been sitting on the bottom rung for far too long
Forgot to tell myself that I’m still brave and strong
Now, I’m wanting to sing a brand-new song

***

Not saying it’s going to be easy but I’ll try
Not saying I won’t be sad because I might still cry
Not saying it’s the end as I don’t want to die
Not saying I won’t need you, so please stand by.




Fight Song (Video & Lyrics🎶)

(NotSalmon – Google Images)

I was scrolling through some videos on YouTube this evening and came across this one (below). It’s called ‘Fight Song’ by Rachel Platten. I found the lyrics very uplifting, so I thought I’d share them here. I especially love the lines – “Losing friends and I’m chasing sleep; Everybody’s worried about me; In too deep, say I’m in too deep (In too deep); And it’s been two years, I miss my home, But there’s a fire burning in my bones; Still believe; Yeah, I still believe.”

I know you are all aware of what a difficult and painful journey I’m on currently, and I’m not saying I’m over it all yet (I wish it were that easy), but this song gave me hope, which meant a lot to me. I can’t say that I won’t need to share any more of my emotionally raw poetry as that is also cathartic, but for tonight, I’ll hang on tightly to these words; perhaps, they will give me some new strength. I hope so.

Please, take the time to listen to this beautiful song; read the lyrics and do let me know what you think of them. With my heartfelt thanks … Love to you all … Ellie 🦢 Xxx 💖💛💝

Like a small boat
On the ocean
Sending big waves
Into motion
Like how a single word
Can make a heart open
I might only have one match
But I can make an explosion

And all those things I didn’t say
Wrecking balls inside my brain
I will scream them loud tonight
Can you hear my voice this time?

This is my fight song
Take back my life song
Prove I’m alright song
My power’s turned on
Starting right now I’ll be strong
I’ll play my fight song
And I don’t really care if nobody else believes
‘Cause I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me

Losing friends and I’m chasing sleep
Everybody’s worried about me
In too deep
Say I’m in too deep (in too deep)
And it’s been two years I miss my home
But there’s a fire burning in my bones
Still believe
Yeah, I still believe

And all those things I didn’t say
Wrecking balls inside my brain
I will scream them loud tonight
Can you hear my voice this time?

This is my fight song
Take back my life song
Prove I’m alright song
My power’s turned on
Starting right now I’ll be strong
I’ll play my fight song
And I don’t really care if nobody else believes
‘Cause I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me

A lot of fight left in me

Like a small boat
On the ocean
Sending big waves
Into motion
Like how a single word
Can make a heart open
I might only have one match
But I can make an explosion

This is my fight song
Take back my life song
Prove I’m alright song
My power’s turned on
Starting right now I’ll be strong (I’ll be strong)
I’ll play my fight song
And I don’t really care if nobody else believes
‘Cause I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me

Know I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me

Audience of One

(Photo by engin akyurt on Unsplash)

I thought I might be on the road to healing

Well, it’s about time, too, they say

Questioning me with persistence

As I died a little more that day

~~~

Do you think this is simply a drama

Played to the audience through neon lights

Just a show for your pleasure, ma’am

While I instantly freeze with stage fright

~~~

Where are those skills you’ve learned

The ones that are meant to help you cope

You really ought to try harder, they say

As I turn away, giving up all hope

~~~

You’re no spring chicken; get on with your life

Don’t you think you’ve wasted enough years

Dragging up the past; c’mon, time to move on

Wipe away those crocodile tears

~~~

But I still have flashbacks; they haunt my mind

I can’t tell you how they scare me so

You don’t understand where I’ve been in my life

What d’you mean, you’re now ready to go

~~~

I’m angry now for those harsh words spoken

But I can’t get allow myself to scream and shout

I am choking back salty tears of utter despair

I just wish I could let go and cry it all out

~~~

Perhaps, it’s better you depart now

Go, get in your car if you must

Don’t come back here asking questions

My lips are sealed; ne’er again will I trust.

Scarred

(Image source – Phoebe Kay – Pinterest)

NOTE:
Just to reassure my readers that I don’t self-harm anymore. Unfortunately, I have scars that will never go away, which I have to live with for the rest of my life. It’s not easy – I carry a lot of shame for them, although I appreciate that was my way of surviving the intensity of the agony at that time. My scars are sadly worse than those in the image. I get judged by strangers who stare sometimes. It makes me want the ground to open up and swallow me. I can’t say I’m never tempted to do it again at times when I’m desperate, but I know that I won’t. I owe it to myself, my children and my ever-curious grandchildren. I have a tattoo across some of my scars – it says, “THIS TOO SHALL PASS,” and I know it will in time.

I want to heal and my writing is my way of beginning that journey. Thank you for bearing with me and supporting me with my recent outpourings of grief.

Tramlines embedded

permanent reminders

in soft, yielding flesh

disguising the pain of existence

~~~

The beginning of the slippery slope

the agonising journey

following tracks

side by side by side by side

~~~

Ensuring her instruments

gleaming in the moonlight

spotless from the flame

as she attacks with ferocity

~~~

Pearls of crimson gathering

on her lily-white skin

offering relief

from the shame and guilt

~~~

Never speaking of his sin

holding it all within

brain freeze

a blade on the skin

~~~

Silenced with threats and blame

memories, flashbacks abound

cutting the evil and torture out

of the time when cries went unheard

~~~

Child of her child’s curiosity

she tells of a fall on broken glass

submerging her truths

hoping the child’s thoughts will pass

~~~

No surrender of life or sanity

She needs no permission to write

expressing her pain in words

she’s not giving up on the fight.


Searching For Tomorrow

You may think me rather sombre as I write my feelings out
I concur they’re somewhat dark, as well you’ll know
Do you understand my pain, and why I try to hide my face?
My shame lives on from very long ago

I started this year well, without a tale to tell the world
But then I started digging, as you will all have read
Was that the wisest move, or should I put it all behind me?
But then I’d have to keep it in my head

My heart and soul are burdened; can I bury thoughts again?
Should I bid them on their way to pastures new?
Friends are standing by me and for that, I bless my soul
Do I really want to lose that loving view?

Oh, I’ve had my share of joys and bliss; an awful lot of fun
Along my endless travels, and on the brightest roads
So, why the saddest face and the hesitance to smile?
When I’m longing now to lose these heavy loads

I attempt to write my heart out; as it gives me real relief
Will you bear with me some more, while I search for peace?
Don’t give up or look away, as I’ll get there in the end
I’m so near the point of getting some release

I’m grateful, one and all, for your love and such kind words
They’re much appreciated, as I wend and find my way
The sun’s begun to shine and the sky’s a vivid blue
As I look forward to a better, brighter day.

Live today facing forward—with your back on yesterday, your eyes on tomorrow, and your head and heart in the moment.”

Richelle E Goodrich

Passage of Time

Please forgive my indulgence in sharing this poem with you. I thought long and hard about publishing it, even writing it initially. This post follows my two previous ones, Dissociative Healing and Brave. They are all a part of the process.

I’m aware that my posts, mainly poems, of late, have been dark. I’m currently working through my thoughts and feelings about this with my counsellor. She is helping a lot, and I know I will get through this before too long. However, today, I needed to write this straight out of my heart, which is where all my writing comes from. It’s the only way I know how to write.

My intention is not to cause distress to any of my readers, although I’m aware that others may possibly have been through such traumatic experiences.


Tick tock, tick tock, tick tock, tick
The metronome ticks the minutes away
Tick tock, tick tock, tick tock, tick
It regularly beats without a delay

She hears it, hears it, hears it now
All the way from childhood days
No choice for her but fear and pain
To come and go from this toxic place

Come day, come week, come every month
Nothing ever changed
Come birthdays, Christmas, year on year
Becoming more deranged

She trod on the cracks along the road
She’ll be punished for that, to be sure
Nearer and nearer she’d get
Ringing the bell on the the door

Waiting, waiting, waiting for time
Knowing she’s headed downstairs
Panic, fear and desperation
He’ll be seated on one of the chairs

She’s greeted by the metronome
Knowing what’s in store
She’s swallowing down the terror
And tightly clenching her jaw

She’s beckoned within, the time has come
The door bangs behind her – it’s shut
The bolt is shot, and she’s trapped inside
As she’s made to be the slut

Come, come, come sit on my knee
Just you do as you’re told
Her heartbeat faster and faster
She’s only eight years old

Don’t tell, don’t tell, don’t tell a soul
They’ll be trouble if you do
So she silenced herself right there and then
Not knowing this was taboo

After years passed, the news got out
Not from her but another source
Someone else told their story
He denied it all, of course

The police were called immediately
Spoke to her Mum and her Dad
She was frozen solid to the core
Because she’d been told she was bad

She didn’t want to cause any trouble
She silently tucked it inside
The grown-ups shrugged their shoulders
While she crept up to her room and died.




 












Dissociative Healing

Image by Ulrike Leone from Pixabay

The past came back to haunt me yesterday
I thought I was over all that
It suddenly came flooding back
When opposite my counsellor, I sat

I cried a river of tears
As I remembered the sickening pain
I didn’t want to go back to that place
To experience everything again

The adult within me departed
Although I was sat in my seat
I could feel myself drifting away
As my heart skipped its regular beat

My thoughts were transported elsewhere
To a time so long ago
The world seemed unreal as time transposed
My agony completely on show

I had gone somewhere else in my mind
Somewhere distant and safe
I couldn’t be touched from where I was hidden
As I became the child, the waif

Gradually soft words broke through
It’s okay, you’re secure, you’re here
The voice, far away, waited patiently
Till the muffled speech became clear

Her voice brought me back to the room
My head cleared as she reached out her hand
The fear left and the pain abated
As I began to understand

My adult returned; it was time to go
Slowly, I walked to the door
I thanked her and smiled as the sun shone in
For I knew I was healing for sure.