To Friend, Or Not To Friend, That Is The Question

Friends. Friends, friends, friends, friends. It’s always been a touchy subject for me.

In junior high I had one friend who made friends with an older group and so I integrated myself into their group.

Well, it was much less of an integration and more like a . . . hmm. More like this:

I didn’t talk much to them, they didn’t talk much to me, but I followed them around because the idea of standing against the wall alone felt too vulnerable. Eventually I met a group of people I jived with and who didn’t bring tasers to school and we were all socially awkward together. Some of those friendships have stood the test of time, and one in particular has got me thinking about the nature of said relationships.

I have been friends with this person for many years (12?) and while I endured college and psychosis, she bumped coke and crashed cars. Granted, I was the one who introduced marijuana to her in high school, but I had enough sense to know when enough was enough. She obviously didn’t.

Psychosis and anxiety played a part, I guess. Hard to enjoy marijuana when every hit increases the two things you’re trying to escape.

She’s not quite an addict. The coke stopped when she had her kid. Now that her and her “baby daddy” (dear Christ I hate using that phrase) have split, and he takes the kid some weekends, she’s back to hanging with losers. For a while I struggled too, dipping back into Marijuana even though it caused me to end up in the E.R and the psych hospital, and back into heavy drinking even though I’d wake up crying, depressed, ready to end my life. Now that I’m more settled in my decision to stay off medication, now that I’ve got more of a healthy routine down, now that I’ve recovered from my abrupt break-up, I’m ready to move on with life. And for some reason I felt myself being called back to my old friendship.

So I’ve been hanging out with her for a few months, and it’s been fun, we have a lot of memories together and our personalities are similar. But I’m multiple people: I’m a peer worker by day (and overnight sometimes), I go to trainings and enjoy doing wholesome things with my friends/coworkers who happen to be twice my age (I’m 23). I enjoy being able to have an intelligent conversation and still find humor in so many things. And by night I’d run around the streets with her, driving places, drinking, smoking, “enjoying my twenties”.

I’m over it. That got so old so fucking quick ya’ll. Am I an old person in a young person’s body or something?

What really broke the camels back, or whatever the idiom is, punched the camel, killed the camel, whatever– wow, all three of those are horrible. What’s really made this decision for me (that’s better) was last weekend. As we wandered downtown, some people were catcalling, and while I tend to have a disgusted attitude about this, she feeds into it. The attention she receives from men–she needs it to survive. I believe it’s an insecurity thing, but having a deep conversation with her is literally impossible.

So, she went back to the group and got one dudes number. We ended up passing them one last time, where she decided to sit on the sidewalk and make a scene, smoke some weed on the street corner. Of course the group migrates over to us and while one loser is trying to hit on me, the other loser doesn’t need to do much to get her attention. They decide they want to eat at a restaurant with us, and while I’m not opposed to “making friends”, I am opposed to being surrounded by fucking morons.

Both are in their thirties and have children, young children. Why didn’t I leave? I’m not the type of person to leave a “friend” with two older men we know nothing about. Especially since she was still reeling from the molly and rave of the night before. She didn’t have a car, and I didn’t trust either of them to get her home safely. And so I stayed. I endured. I threw a lot of shade her direction masked by humor, which got a few laughs at the table. Fine. I can be an entertainer.

At the end of the night (2:50am) they took off, after one of them smacking her ass, and I took her home. Although this encounter is relatively mild (besides the constant being hit on) the reason it struck a nerve with me is because this has happened once before with her and me. In fact, my dumb 16 or 17 year old high self got in the car with two older guys (maybe early twenties? or younger. Adults.) that she said were going to take us for a ride. She lied to me. Her plan was to lose her virginity to one of them because she “couldn’t graduate high school without having lost her virginity”, because that’s something colleges and jobs care about, whether you fucked some loser or not.

Put that on your fucking resume. Literally. Your fucking resume.

They took us somewhere I didn’t recognize, and that’s when I got angry. No one would tell me where we were. I got out the car when we stopped and was pissed. She got busy with the dude in the car. The other guy, his friend, tried getting me to kiss him, to touch him, e.t.c, and I had to elbow him in the chest to the ground to get him off me. I was very athletic, strong, and wasn’t in the mood for his fucking shit. He stopped after that. We waited. They took us back to the mall. I called my mom asking her to pick us up, and called my friend a whore. We didn’t talk for a while.

I realize I’ve held onto this friendship because I’m scared of being thrown to the sharks, of having to make new friends. I’ve never been good at it. Ever. But by being around the group I have been lately, I realize what true compassion and kindness and friendship is. I never experienced it before, really. I now realize we’re at different points in our lives. We’ve both had setbacks, and we both are struggling to get on our feet. The difference is I would like to balance and she prefers the wobble.

I hope it doesn’t take her son being taken away from her for her to get the fucking picture. Because I’m done. And I’m probably the only friend she had who would actually stick their neck out for her.

Not quite sure how to start this conversation with her.

Writer’s Block

Do you all remember a time when I would bust out posts every day, sometimes twice a day, sometimes thrice a day? That time ended many months ago, and this writer’s block has continued something fierce. Every once in a while I come on and see how everyone is doing, what’s going on their life and where they are heading and I wonder why I just can’t kick my ass in gear and write.

I’m a writer for God’s sake, that’s what I do.

So, as I sit in class right now, it got me thinking about my writer’s block, others writer’s block, and how people just push through it. So that’s what I’m trying to do, for the sake of the cathartic process, and for the sake of my writing future.

Because I am such a broken human being unique individual with a variation of experiences, I decided to do something for myself and attend an outpatient group. This group meets three days a week, for three hours each day, and I’m on the evening schedule. We learn a lot about coping skills, about forming and maintaining healthy relationships, as well as being open and honest about what’s going on in our head. Some people have substance use issues partnered with their mental health, others don’t.

I’m not sure what I’m learning from it. I know that it gets me out of the house and prevents me from isolating, which is good for me, and I know it’s good for me because I absolutely hate doing it. And I seem to hate doing anything that’s good for me. Ever get that feeling?

Meanwhile, the outside world is falling apart and we’re all sitting around twiddling our thumbs like:

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When we should be doing something like this:

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Kanye West is trapped in a perpetual state of “mania”, or at least he’s addicted to the “manic” behavior, Trump is still president, sexual assault victims are coming forward and getting pushed back down, people are putting guns to their heads, overdosing, throwing themselves off bridges and the ages are getting younger and younger, there’s rarely anything positive on the news (in America), everyone kind of flipped the bird to school shootings, cops are still shouting “break yourself fool!”, cocking their gun sideways, and blowing seven holes in innocent people like they work for the crips, and meanwhile I’m sitting here on this computer documenting it all, processing it, and thinking back to similar times.

I think maybe, just maybe, we’re all stuck in a pretty serious delusion about our lives: That we can continue moving forward with all of this baggage on our back. Nothing is being discussed, and when a discussion does arise, it turns into nothing more than the internet being divided on the subject for a couple days. Racism is a hot topic, until a school shooting happens. We’re all crying for the students until a cop shoots another unarmed white, black, yellow, blue, brown, rainbow man/woman. As we writhe from the shock, Trump says something outlandish and/or stupid (mostly stupid), and all cameras point to him. They’re so busy photographing his orange face and blonde toupee that they miss the guy standing on the bridge behind them, tears streaming down his face.

There’s no soft way to put things: we’re living in a society in which things are swept under the rug.

I guess it’s nice that you and your friend on Facebook have these deep philosophical conversations over messenger that ultimately ends with one of you quoting words you don’t understand by some unnamed author, hoping that the way you’ve carried yourself and your political stance will help you sound like an intellectual.

And it doesn’t help that when something serious on social media is trending, it doesn’t get taken serious and its fifteen minutes of fame go by in five. This is my argument against May Mental Health Awareness month. There’s nothing impressive about a month of people saying nice things to each other and being supportive when that mindset falls apart in June.

At this point, I’m ranting, because if there’s one thing we all understand about writer’s block, is that you can’t pull the right fucking words out of your head even if your life depended on it. Something has them stopped up like hair in a drain, and I don’t have a long enough whatcha-ma-call-em to dig the mess out. The only solution is to pour corrosive bleach down the hole and let it set. So, I’m pouring bleach on my brain and waiting for the magic to happen.

What will happen to this blog? I’m not entirely sure. I don’t want to get rid of it, I want to help it blossom into what it once was. I want to communicate to real people about real topics and still promote mental wellness. I want to commit to writing at least once a day to gain back old followers and shake hands with new ones. I want to be part of the solution, not the problem, in my own life and in relation to the rest of the world. I want a lot of things, as you can see, and I’m not quite sure what that means.

And that’s today’s Mental Truth.

 

Rants and Rambles

Songs have a beautiful way of expressing things we struggle to speak. Tonight I am listening to The Strumbellas, and I fell in love with their songs “Spirits” and “Shovels and Dirt”. I think each line has something impressive to offer. It’s hard to miss the main line in spirits: “I’ve got guns in my head and they won’t go, spirits in my head and they won’t go”.

And I think “it ain’t worth livin’ if you don’t get hurt” and “I’ve got a head full of darkness and darkness is good” is also two of the most beautifully truthful lines I’ve heard, along with “Well demons pull me side to side again, yeah well I’m scared to sleep and I hate my friends . . .” I never knew it was so easy to sum up psychological pain.

Is darkness good? A lot of my depressions have been bad, the episodes have driven me into self-destruction and put me through a lot of pain, but the beauty that has come out of that pain has been magnificent. I’ve done some of my best writing. I started this blog. I played some of my best on the piano. Without that little bit of darkness, half of me wouldn’t exist. The darkness is me, and it’s a part of me I couldn’t live without.

That being said, I’ll be in the Santa Monica area tomorrow. Sometimes it’s nice to push aside the darkness and have a little fun.

I don’t talk much about my writing projects on here, but most people know I write short stories as well as some poetry that I think is shit. I’ve been to some fiction workshops, and I’m taking yet another fiction class this semester, but I’m shit at communicating with other writers. Maybe if we write back and forth, I can communicate with them, but not many are willing to do that.

So, if there are ever any fellow writers out there who are serious about their writing, and would be willing to give me some thoughtful, constructive criticism on my work in return for a batch of my own thoughtful, constructive criticism on their work, please get in contact with me. I have a few writing projects that I want to push forward, but I need some more reassurance and criticism before I do.

I’m not quite sure what this post is. Remember when I used to do these kinds of vagabond posts where each paragraph is something completely irrelevant to the previous one? I took some Melatonin and I’m hoping it will knock me out soon so I don’t have to torture you all any longer.

Love yourself. You are enough.

And that’s today’s mental truth. Well, tonight’s mental truth. It’s almost tomorrow’s mental truth. I’ll blog about my Santa Monica experience. I’ll be sharing pictures on instagram, you can follow me there @ Written_in_the_photo, and my twitter @Ipenned. I don’t use Twitter much, and I just created a new account, so there’s not much there, but if you’re a big twitter person, you might get a kick out of things I retweet.

Anyway, enough of this shit post. Ali, Out.

Happy Anniversary

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Yesterday was my 3 year anniversary on WordPress, according to WordPress. I’d like to take a look through all the crazy shit that’s been posted on this site for the last three years. Let’s start at the beginning.

I think one of my favorite posts from 2015 has got to be when I compared Neurological disorders and diseases to mental health issues, because there’s this weird idea going around that mental health issues are “diseases”. There was an article I came across trying to convince people that all mental health issues are also neurological diseases and disorders. And I, well, had a field day with that. You can read it here. And if you’re curious about this subject, there’s more on it here.

My greatest issue with that debate is that there hasn’t been an ounce of verifiable, or valid biological evidence that mental health issues are one hundred percent, well, biological. The majority of the research done on people struggling are done after they’ve been taking psychiatric medication for years. And the genetic component in relation to mental health issues are grossly exaggerated, especially considering the new research out that shows genetics contribute loosely to our health when considered to environmental factors.

I’m not one to argue all psychiatric research is false, I believe genes do play a very, very small roll. But I’m also aware that a lot of research is biased, and the results are manipulated to sound good for the public and the FDA. The truth will come out.

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In 2016 I continued my rants. A good piece of memorabilia from then would certainly be the post I did on IPS (Intentional Peer Support) the first time I took the training for my current job. You can read about IPS here. This training humbled me as a person, as a mental health consumer, and as a mental health worker. This was the beginning of my transformation from lonely, depressed, arrogant, and hopeless to whatever it is I am now. I’m certainly happier, I’m not arrogant, and I’ve got a lot of hope for my future. I owe this attitude adjustment, in part, to peer support and IPS, certainly.

In 2017 I wrote a lot about my job, and how it was changing me, humbling me, how much I respected the people I worked with, and how I was published on Mad in America. One of my favorite posts that I wrote back then was about when I found out what was really in my food. You can read that here. It’s about science, Popsicles and what I thought was in those Popsicles.

If you’re new to this blog, or you haven’t read it in a while, I’d suggest getting the back story on why it’s taken me so long to get back into the writing mode. I’m going to start posting creative writings on here more often, just little blurbs of creativity that can get the brain stirring and maybe some philosophical juices flowing in all of us.

pirates_ship_logoI have an account on Booksie that you can check out here, under the name Impulsively Penned. Most of the things I write are rather impulsive, and most of them are penned upon paper and then typed into a computer, so I figured the name suited me well. You’ll find short stories, some poems, a one-act play I wrote in a fiction class a few years ago, and even an excerpt from a novel I’ve been working on–the very beginning of it at least. I’m always looking for new readers with new opinions and constructive criticisms, so I fully welcome you to visit and leave comments there, or visit here and leave comments here. It would be great to get some new perspectives.

Wishing everyone well.

 

The Nature Of Progression

It’s weird coming out of this writer’s block. I feel that I have so much to say and yet somehow have forgotten how to say it.

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Before the brain fog hit terribly, and I was still blogging on here, I talked about a class I was taking, a Native American literature class and how the material really spoke to me. I also talked about how there was a girl in my class who I was sure was so jealous of me that she was turning the professor and my classmates against me, and conspiring to get this blog taken down–like I said, it was right before the brain fog settled in.

I’m sitting here tonight thinking about where my journey had brought me so far. I think it’s brought me to a much better understanding of myself, of how I fit in this world, of where I can go. I manage to plow through a speech yesterday, something I promised myself I’d never do again, and felt okay about it–better than I usually feel about something like that. It was the first time I could speak in front of a decent group of people and NOT forget everything I was supposed to say because of anxiety.

And tonight I opened up a book I got from that Native American professor and the first passage entitled “The Nature of Progression” touched me suddenly and deeply.

“There’s a gyroscope inside the body, whose electro-magnetic fingers reach out to touch the facets we call spirit, mind, and emotion. It builds a progression that’s always seeking to occur, always moving, always bringing us to balance, despite our confusion, our camouflage, our sabotage.”

That’s described my experience over the last 3 years perfectly. I felt I was always losing control, always bouncing off the rails, and yet there was another force within me fighting for balance. I knew where I needed to return, I just didn’t know how.

And I think that’s a struggle for a lot of us dealing with our mental health. We have a vision of where we want to be, how we want to be, but we’re not quite sure how to get there. I’ve learned a little secret about this.

I’ve learned to let life take me where it will take me. I’ve learned that I don’t need to be perfect in everything as I was pushing myself to be. I’ve learned that where life takes me is where I will end up, and I’m okay with that. Sometimes if you let go of a little control, you gain more than you’d ever imagine you’d have.

The thing about life is that you can’t control it. The universe is so chaotic that it’s ordered, so no matter how much you try and control something, the universe already knows what needs to be in order for balance to come to fruition. And it will guide you in that direction, it’s guided me.

This is my second post of the day because I just have so much to get out of me, so much to catch everyone up on, and a blog to run, of course. I’ve been absent for too long. It’s been calling me back ever since.

As this song I’m listening to says: there’s no point in living if you can’t feel the life.  And as much pain as I’ve been through, I wouldn’t trade it in for a life of perfection. I think that says a lot.

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Promote Your Blog in 2018 — MakeItUltra™ Opportunity

This is a beautiful opportunity to gain some readers and growth for your blog, I remember doing it at the beginning of last year and it really helped me come in contact with some awesome people. Visit MakeItUltra today! (Link to his post below).

 

 

Hi Everyone, In 2017 I started a blog post called “Promote Your Blog” where fellow bloggers could share and promote their blog with the MIU community. This post resulted in 25,000+ views and 4,000+ bloggers sharing the who, what and why behind their blog. I want to create a new directory to even out the […]

via Promote Your Blog in 2018 — MakeItUltra™

The Future of Preventive Care

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In the last post, I mentioned the DSM board’s attempt at preemptively striking against textbook psychosis. There’s a whole other world out there in the mental health field dedicated, and quite passionately might I add, to prevention psychiatry: stopping the progression of certain experiences, mainly psychosis, before they turn into something they can label as schizophrenia.

I have nothing against their passion. But I would like one of the members to explain how creating several new disorders like attenuated psychosis syndrome would do anything other than create a new label multitudes of teenagers would be diagnosed with, fed medications that aren’t researched on teenagers, and make them fear their future more than they should.

So, where do we start?

If you ask me (no one did), preventive care, if that’s what it’s to be called, includes family dynamics, relationship dynamics, and self-dynamics, not only diagnosis and medications.

Family Dynamics

This is an important but difficult portion for me to write. I find myself grappling with words that sound rehearsed and disingenuous, because I’m not quite sure what a healthy family dynamic would be. But I understand that what you are taught, what you see, what you experience as a child heavily influences what you teach, what you see, and what you experience as an adult. This includes behaviors and thought patterns that may be seen in the world of psychology as abnormal.

The family as a whole must be looked at in preventive care because it may very well be that the problem starts somewhere in the family, perhaps in the history of the family. Substance use, abuse, neglect, perfectionism, other illnesses of family members that fall on the responsibility of the child. Every moment of life becomes a little more traumatic, and the brain is our rock, it must do what it must to protect us from processing emotions we don’t fully understand. As helpful as that can be in the moment, it becomes something to wrestle with for many years in the long run.

As a child, I never spoke my insecurities, my emotions, or opinions. I didn’t feel safe physically or emotionally. I didn’t learn healthy outlets for anger, and I didn’t learn healthy outlets for sadness. I didn’t know my pain was worth mentioning, so all of it meshed together somewhere in the back of my mind, and eventually came out as panic attacks, depression, psychosis, and self-harm.

Does this mean my family is to blame? No. What it means is that the dynamics were not healthy. It means when looking at preventing further development of experiences like psychosis and depression and self harm, regardless of whether a diagnosis is the main goal, we have to look at how the family functions/functioned as a whole.

Relationship Dynamics

What’s been learned in childhood and adolescence inevitably bridges into the relationships we have throughout life, and if there is a pattern of bumpy relationships–friendships, romantic relationships, acquaintanceship– then it’s time to also take a look at why. Everyone, even the most introverted person, needs a close friend once in a while. The inability to have an open, comfortable, a mutual connection with another person may force a person inward.

It may also signify an inability to understand what healthy relationships look like, another one of my own personal weak points. Part of preventive care should be focused heavily on providing a person resources on how to learn to have these healthy relationships, even if it’s just one person. And I’m not talking about just therapy, I’m talking about workshops and intensive analysis. Having someone in your corner makes all the difference when you feel lost or disregarded or confused.

Self-Dynamics

How does the person regard themselves? How does the person treat themselves? This is the most important aspect of preventive care, because in the end you really only have yourself as your largest support force; if you’re not on your side, who is? This is why I believe adding another diagnostic label telling someone they’re developing a life-long “illness” that they will need long-term medication as treatment doesn’t really empower them to look at their life with healthy vision.

Is the person stuck inward? Do they value themselves? Do they value others? Do they have painful outbursts? I point out these behaviors for a reason: they are most often questions asked and behaviors people want to change. I don’t believe preventive care should be about changing anyone, but rather giving the person a chance to see a different perspective and a different side of things. The personal transformation which transpires from that will help the person loosen up in the way they are meant to loosen up, rather than forcing a way of being on them. We’ve seen that force isn’t a healthy dynamic between “patient/client” and doctor many times.

Where Does This Leave Us?

If you are a provider, take into account everything. I’m sure that’s something that’s taught over and over again, in fact I know it is because I’ve heard it in every psychology class I’ve ever taken. But sometimes we forget. And sometimes we don’t mean to forget. Sometimes we get wrapped up in what our job is versus what our job could be. And that’s when it’s important to take a step back and really engage with people, understanding them on a personal level. It’s a two way street here: while it’s up to us consumers to take our health into our own hands, it’s also up to providers to guide us appropriately when we might not be able to take our health into our own hands.

There’s a notable difference between doctor’s who are genuinely curious about what’s ailing you and those who want to help, but come equipped only with the DSM.

Afraid of Us

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Let’s take a look at the fear in ourselves, instead.

One thing I notice that often comes with diagnosis besides confusion, sadness, in some cases hopelessness, is a fear of never living a “normal” life, whatever that means. It might have something to do with the YOU’RE SICK FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE; HEH, SORRY mentality some doctors, friends, and family project.

Then we become fearful of living at all. We become fearful of our “symptoms”, we become fearful of “losing control”, we become fearful of waking up in the morning.

I remember that fear like it was yesterday, because it probably was yesterday, because I go back and forth. Just to show you I am indeed human and not a robot. You can never really tell these days.

I think fear is healthy. It’s healthy to be vigilant of your emotions, your feelings, your person. It’s not healthy to let that fear run you, to let that fear form opinions about yourself that prevent you from living the life you deserve. If you struggle with your mental health, chances are you’ve been through *some shit*, and deserve a break from that chaos.

There are times when I feel I can’t control my thoughts, or the speed of them, what I see, what I hear. Sometimes I feel I can’t control the vibrating anxiety shaking my body from head to toe, or the creeping depression that sits idle until it’s ready. Then I wonder just exactly why I want control. What makes the anxiety so unbearable? Often it’s because I’m sitting there thinking about how unbearable the anxiety is. That makes the unbearable, unbearable.

What makes us fearful of experiencing something? What if we embrace that fear? What if we let it through the door, make it leave it’s shoes at the bottom of the steps, and invite it upstairs for tea? How hard can it push if there’s nothing to push against?

The truth of life is sometimes things need to just happen. Whether that be anxiety or voices, sometimes it just needs to happen. Sometimes rivers need to run down the mountain. Sometimes plants need extra room to grow. What do you expect to happen if you keep a blooming, growing plant confined in its seedling box? Where do you expect the roots to go? What do you expect to happen to the plant? If you can answer those questions for that example, you can answer those questions for yourself.

I get scared often. I get scared of the demons that follow me around and tell me I’m possessed. I get scared of that feeling of being watched, targeted, followed, by something supernatural, something I can’t fight back against, except with spirit. That scares me. And sometimes I fight it: I obsess over it, and that obsession leads to no sleep, and no sleep leads to increased feelings of being watched, touched, yanked on, clawed, and torn apart.

I’ve been learning along with you all. Sometimes in that fear I simply let myself be fearful. I ask myself what’s the worse that has happened? What’s the worse that can happen? How likely is it to happen? What else could these feelings be attributed to? Is there something going on in my life right now that is making me fearful, sad, angry, and it’s manifesting as this spiritual attack?

The other truth of life is that there are many different reasons for things. And to limit yourself to one reason for one thing is only backing yourself into a corner.

 

Mmmm Brains.

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I like brains.

I like seeing people’s brains. I like imagining poking people’s brains. I like imagining the second my finger tip touches the outer layer of the cortex, my consciousness gets sucked from my body and enters the space-time continuum surrounded by other floating brains, kind of like that one episode of Futurama, but better because it’s real.

But the main reason I like the brain is because we don’t know half as much as we think we know. I’m convinced our brains, which have named themselves, know things they don’t want us to know–or know things they know we couldn’t handle knowing. Not just about ourselves, but about the universe, the spirit world, particles, biology, consciousness, everything. Think about the layers of protection we have, biologically and strictly mentally. Our body and brain uses every last resource it can to keep us living. Why? Because it’s biologically wired that way? Maybe. But there’s nothing you can say to prove that. And there’s nothing I can say to disprove that.

There’s a new study coming out of a U.S and Japanese research team-up that has compelling evidence the brain duplicates memories upon their formation: one copy for the present, one for the past that gets carried into our future: it’s there for a lifetime. It might not be available to our consciousness for a lifetime, but it’s there.

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In Case You’re A Visual Learner

The hippocampus (short term) and the cortex (long term) are two areas of the brain we know memory is apart of. In mice, this team watched a specific cluster of connected neurons (i.e, a memory) in reaction to shock. To control individual neurons, they used beams of light and could essentially turn memories on and off. Memories were shown to form simultaneously in the hippocampus and the cortex.

These scientists say it may help us understand diseases like dementia. I’m looking at the bigger picture. Essentially, these memories are being “duplicated”. One is cemented in the brain after a few days (the long term memory) and the other is readily available. As long as the biological connection remains between the cortex and the hippocampus, the memories will be available to our consciousness.

So what of fugue? What of amnesia? What of Trauma? What could this potentially tell us about Dissociative identities?

This is why I tend to disagree with people who refuse to believe in the reality of dissociative identity. I disagree for two reasons. 1) I’ve met someone who has shared his personal experience with it. 2) If the brain duplicates memories, one for the long term and one for the short term, what do you think it would do in reaction to memories it doesn’t want to deal with?

Our brains are emotional little creatures. Torture, abuse, anything to hurt our consciousness and soul seems to tip our little brains upside down. They react different ways because each brain is unique. It has the job of not only keeping our physical body alive, but our mental one as well. It harbors everything that we know about life. Taste. Smell. Sight. Hearing. It lets us feel warmth. It hosts every single thought we’ve ever had and ever will have. We learn. Not a computer in the world can match the amount of space or the speed we have in that little jiggly meat sack in our skulls. It interprets life for us and we have no choice but to trust it.

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Could you imagine forming simultaneous memories of being beat every day, locked in a closet, given rotten food for dinner and dirty water to wash it down with?

We know maybe a millionth of what there is to know about the brain. Memories could be duplicated ten times for all we know. We can’t test shit on humans, thanks to the fucking goody-two-shoes ethics committee, so we’ll probably never know.

If the brain has memories even it doesn’t want to see, it can’t destroy them–so it relocates them. And those memories pile up and up and up until they take on a kind of life of their own. A personality of their own, you could say.

Trauma affects everyone differently. Maybe they pile up and up and manifest themselves as mood swings. Maybe they pile up and up and manifest themselves as demons crawling through your floor sinking their bloody teeth into the fleshy parts of your upper arm. Maybe they pile up and up and manifest as a racing heart beat, lightheadedness, a tingling sensation in your limbs, and racing thoughts.

Not that trauma is the only area of life responsible for experiences like that, but for those of us who have been through some kind of trauma, you know what I’m talking about.

Let’s not take everything in life at face-value. And let’s be careful not to sum up such a simply complex experience of being conscious creatures to the limited amount of biology that we know.

If you’ve seen the movie “Split”, and you understood the actual message behind it, not this weird, misguided mass opinion of “uhhhh it’s making fun of people with mental problems errrrrrrrrgaawwdd”, you also know what I’m talking about.

The Night

I once saw a bear in my shower. Well, he wasn’t in my shower, he was outside of the doors halfway in my mind, halfway in the bubble of consciousness we call The Universe. Then I saw a spider, the size of my hand, and he was on the door until he wasn’t anymore. Then I was transported to a garden with a grey stone wall and a tree with those cherry blossom flowers, those beautiful pink ones, and in front of the tree stood The Hooded One, in white, and he turned to greet me, or kill me, and I was pulled back from his garden. He visited my garden, my room, he turned my cat’s eyes red, and I was more frightened then I should have been. We were tugged between two wormholes. Then I fell asleep.

One night I discussed the word “working” with an old jazz man. Boy, did we have a good laugh. He asked me how the word should be pronounced, so I laughed and said it out loud for him to hear, and for me to hear, but no one else. He repeated the word, and my laugh, and then said the word with a British accent, and an otherwordly accent, then he asked again, again, and again if he was pronouncing it right. He played some saxophone in the background.

In a house I called myself dead, walking the halls of death row, but I didn’t say it and my feet weren’t mine. There was silence and noise and I was followed underneath the streetlights by the man with only a skin flap for a face, no eyes, no ears, no nose, no mouth, only thoughts which he stole from me. I ran to my car and went home and waited until sunrise.

First I thought I was going crazy, or maybe a little loony, Luna, Lunar, I must be from the moon. Then I decided alien contact and demons and wormholes made much more sense than insanity.