Cancer this Week and Living with Addiction

While growing up, U.S. president Abraham Lincoln lived in Indiana for 14 years. The Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial commemorates his time there. When my friend Janet was seven years old, her second-grade class visited the place. While strolling around outside, she found a Band-Aid on the ground and excitedly assumed it had once graced a booboo on Old Abe himself. She took it home and secretly used it as a talisman. When she rubbed it on her own wounds, it seemed to have magical healing properties. Only later did she realize that Band-Aids weren’t invented until 55 years after Lincoln’s death. No matter. The artifact had done a superb job. I predict you will soon find a comparable placebo, Cancerian.

You know, when I post these horoscopes from Rob Brezsny I rarely know what I’m going to write about. I try and let the words point me.

Hmmm. Hmmm. Hmmmm.  This is going to be a long one readers, so get comfortable. It is a windy road too.

This is about belief. It isn’t about truth, or Truth, or TRUTH. It is about the fact that our beliefs create our reality.  If you believe everyone is mean to you, that is what you will see.  Yesterday I was eating my lunch on the beach looking out over the waves at the Olympic mountains. It had been a very intense 24 hour period. I had just left a meeting where I fell apart and then had a good talk with my old sponsor, Mo.  Thank god for Mo. She is one of the THE most loving people I know. So I’m sitting there noticing as usual that there are a lot of birds.  The birds come here because there are a lot of people and that means, hopefully, FOOD.  I noticed a very scraggly pigeon, missing half of it’s neck feathers.  Sometimes molting birds look like this and sometimes “henpecked” birds look like this. The bird world can be very brutal and very cutthroat and if you had to eat three times your weight in food every day I suppose you’d be a little bird brained too.

As I looked at the pigeon I thought, “wow, it must be so hard, suck so much to be a bird. That poor thing, what a life it must have. Makes me soooo sad.”  And it hit me.  Why am I focusing on that bird?  There are other birds around, some of them obviously wanting to eat, and there are birds soaring in the sky, skudding across the water in a landing or take off, hanging out in the sun (it was a gorgeous autumn day). I can chose to see what I want to see.  Halleluah!

There is something I have not divulged in my writings about me and D and I’m going to talk about it. Because I must.  I will do all I can to keep details etc private but I feel I need to paint a picture for myself.  I get clarity as I write and I need to document this extremely intense and very real part of our lives.

10 years ago D got married to a woman he obviously loved but a woman who was very broken. Drug addict broken. The wedding had been postponed until she went to treatment and got sober.  She left treatment after a week (this would prove to be a pattern) but did manage to stay sober a year. In that time, D married her.  Once that blissful year was over, everything went to hell.  After 4 more years he divorced her but for the next and most recent five years she has been a fixture in his life.  He didn’t want to be her husband but he didn’t want to drop her on her ass and I suspect a small part of him hoped. Yeah, I know. Detachment can take time. Who am I of all people to judge?

So one of the things that was getting in the way of D and I meeting was she was back around and making his life a misery. I only had an inkling of how much but having been there done that, I felt more would be revealed. One of the things I’ve been was a catalyst for change in this area of his life. There was a climax, the cops were called and a denouement that involved in patient treatment for 7 months, 6 of them in Canada. We were elated.  She is, in his focus, that wounded bird without any neck feathers for the coming cold winter.

I thought that he was done with her in all but the healing.  I was wrong. Bear with me as I jump to the present and then back to the past to make this clear from my point of reference.

He and I have been talking every day in some capacity ever since he returned from LA and it’s become more and more open and affectionate. Yesterday for no reason I knew of I started feeling very, and I mean VERY, agitated.  I didn’t give it too much weight with the D story because Monday had been a very difficult day around the Alzheimer’s Homestead, lots of drama and sickness after the yard sale and that is why I was having such a low point day yesterday. I received a text from D at 7:23am asking if I could take him to work at 4.  Well yes, of course.  I went about my morning, going to the foggy bluff to work on the masthead illustration for this new website, to the meeting, to the beach but the closer it got to pickup time the more agitated I became.  Physically shaky.

I get to his place and the FUNKY energy is indescribable. I knew as soon as I arrived at his apartment that SHE had been around and when he buzzed me in, he wasn’t going to, and I got to his door, which was open, I was all “oh man, this is bad.” I saw a woman’s coat on a chair and I thought, OMG, is she still HERE? Because the last time she was using D as a crash landing after binging on drugs.  She could stay days or hours but it was always devastating to his health and energy cycles, not to mention his psyche.

Fortunately she was gone but her Stink permeates everything. I had noticed this stink while I was cat sitting for D too. Yesterday I learned that she has been around in some capacity for weeks. Daily phone calls and sporadic crash landings.  I do not know what prompted him to let her back in again. I do not know exactly when this started. I don’t need the details. What I do know and did need to know is that this has been a secret.  The transparency wasn’t there.  She had called the night that I was over at D’s house the night before I fled to the Oregon Coast.  He left the room to talk to her and I was ticked off about that lack of transparency that night because we had talked about this before.  That I needed full disclosure in this one matter. So I know that it at least started at that point but I think it started the week before around the same time he had his emergency oral surgery and I got fired.

So. While D and I did have the discussion I’ve wanted to have and we have restructured our relationship, there is this one last matter.  He is going to physically clean his place and hopefully on the full moon we will be doing a cleansing/blessing of his home and then a banishing of ex wife. I am extremely aware, however, that all the work we do to cut her loose, remove the hooks, cleanse, bless, and ban her sorry ass will be of absolutely no use if he answers her phone calls or opens his door.

The last time he said he still wanted to maintain some semblance of friendship if she got sober.  She left treatment after one week so the 7 months of peace we hoped for never happened. I’m convinced that some of the problems between he and I were directly related to the stress her renewed presence caused him and the fact that he was carrying a secret from me.  All I saw was the results and it nearly took me out, the timing could NOT have been worse.  This time he’s not interested in any relationship but he’s addicted in a way to that drama, he’s got a long way to go before I will call him free of the hooks that reel him in every time.

I knew it had something to do with our difficulties but it was not okay to discuss, he cut me off at the pass every time. I thought it was residual stuff, I had no idea this shit was still going on.  OMG. Now I know the signs.  I will be vigilant and am not going to believe it is me if there is a next time. I will see what is right in front of my eyes.  The sad featherless bird, the other hungry birds, and the soaring in the sun on the breeze birds. I will try to remain the soaring bird and bring D with me but if he’s grounded there with the sad bird, I will have to fly away.

So while we are holding hands and talking there is more to discuss.  You all might remember my Partner List. D *loves* my Partner List. It was one of the things that connected us in the beginning because he was saying things to me word for word from my list which he had never seen.  But something is glaringly missing from it and has been added.  NO addicted ex-wives.  Period.  This is a deal breaker.  So we either work towards full disclosure and complete transparency in the event that she shows up, and she WILL show up, she WILL try to insinuate herself again.  She always has and she will try again.  Deal. Breaker. If he lets her in, I will have to go and fast.

This poor little sad bird MUST be removed from our landscape and sent back to her own landscape to remain. Sad is it, much as one wants to help, sometimes there is no help and sometimes you just have to go look at the birds that are soaring. And sometimes you have to leave the other hungry birds on the ground too.

There is hope here but there is also serious fuckupedness.  Time will tell how this plays out.

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