Gaslighting and Betrayal


“Life has been some combination of fairy-tale coincidence and joie de vivre and shocks of beauty together with some hurtful self-questioning.”  ~  Sylvia Plath

There was a brief rain shower a short while ago. I had the headphones on, left on my head after watching a video, because I forget things, all the time. When I heard it I doubted. Doubt is no stranger to me. But after removing the audio equipment from my head I stepped out to find it was true. Racing clouds, pale silver from moonlight, wind almost there, I sat looking for light from this tableaux of shadows. There was some. One in particular came through the trees that had been abandoned by their leaves only days ago. The light was reflected from the window in the little hobbit cottage the landlady had built out by the chicken coop. It was a reflection from her huge-screen High-def TV, yonder in the house. I think it was left on last night. Strange, no screen-saver? Whatever. I’m waiting for peace and happiness this morning. Yup, it may come today, and I for certain want the kinds that endure. But flashes here and there will do. I’m up against the wall financially. The next two weeks are going to be way tight. It’ll test my resolve, right? That’s the common wisdom. Who am I to reword it just for giggles? Twas a friend who wished me happiness and peace in my life, and the message of good wishes came through Facebook. She’s one of my circle of friends who shared the trauma of being let go from the animal shelter, but she, however, left a year before us others. It’s all about the animals. Remind me lest I forget. The love for shelter animals, which digs deeper than even compassion can dig, is pretty much eternal, once it sets in. It digs deep, down where the cosmic big picture plays in an endless matinee, and when I  .  .  .  no, wait  .  .  .  didn’t Will Shakespeare say that we are all but actors on a stage. Dude rocks BTW. I am skating dangerously close to the “It’s all an illusion” bromide. So, before this turns into an ice skating metaphor I will wink and giggle and move on  .  .  .  no, wait, right?  .  .  . sigh, I just want to advocate for the two-legged animals as well. That’s all. Peace.

If we shadows have offended,
Think but this, and all is mended,
That you have but slumber’d here
While these visions did appear.  ~  Puck

Mysterious, huh? Turns out I was wrong about the rain. It was snow. Not normal snow, it almost looks like nano-sleet, with a little crunch to it when tread upon. It was still falling slightly when I went out to sit on the passenger seat of my car with the door open. The clouds were still racing, pretty thick up over the Sangre de Cristo Range, where some of them have snagged on the summits. There was some low fog hanging back in Pueblo Canyon. I worked with a guy, yonder at the natural foods supermarket, who’s brother was married to a Pueblo woman. He told me a tale of the giants that live back up in Pueblo Canyon. I have a tendency to give experimental consideration to that which seems to be myth. I know I personally have not seen a giant since I moved here 21 years ago. But then, when I think about it, if I was a giant with a nice home back in the wilderness on the Pueblo I wouldn’t likely wander into town anyway. Ya know, this is a strange place to live.

I’ve been thinking about shape-shifting lately. I learned a sweet experimentally considered perspective from reading a book called Shape-Shifting, by John Perkins. His teachings kinda sorta got all mushed up in with a perspective of mine which had been derived from Roger Zelazny’s Amber Chronicles, a ten book series that is some of the best fiction I have read. My point here is that I am looking for some way to break free from my stale life situation. Practical measures aren’t breaking anything right now, so I’ve been trying to find some other way. Shape-shifting looks at everything as being a feature of whatever particular dream we are inhabiting. So for me, it’s like Mark Twain’s line, from The Mysterious Stranger, “dream other dreams and better”. I love that! Of all the people, that line was spoken by Satan’s nephew, who is a central character in the novella. So, ummm let’s see, I’m gonna have a go at the “it’s all an illusion” thing. Nah dude, ain’t no illusion dude, it’s a dream dude, so chill. Fantasy is illusion, it cannot be real, no way no how. Dreams are a different kind of animal. Dreams can indeed be real, iffin you snag one just so. The trick is to look beyond the dream you inhabit, look to find an appealing and nurturing new dream. Then you try really really hard to feel that new dream so completely that you can step over into it and find change where it seemed that no change would come. Occupy Dreams. Has a nice ring to it, right? It’s not creating your own reality. What the heck does that mean anyway? Is it solipsism? I’ll never know. Stephan Levine, in Unattended Sorrow, wrote that we do not create our own reality, we effect our own reality. Whatever works, that’s what I say.

Yeah, I’m talking about magick again. Terence McKenna usta talk about hacking the cosmic mainframe. Just like that, you reach in with a team effort from your mind and soul, reach in and change things from the inside out. Therapy is one good way of doing that very thing, but it is far from the only way to reach thusly within. My therapy session yesterday was a doozy. Both of us were all wound up, it was so intense. What I brought up was an incident from the 6th grade. It was the tipping point where I changed from an energetic shiny popular blond blue-eyed wunderkind into a mopey shadow-dwelling depressive. Nearly in an instant, as measured on a cosmic scale. This incident involved three other kids, all bright in their own right. In looking back on this incident I have always believed that the trouble that arose for me then was a matter of my experiencing my first spell of dissociation. The three other kids saw things one way and I saw them another. They said they were right and I was not. But I knew I was right. My contribution to what was going on between us four was spot on. I was outnumbered, obviously, so I was overruled. They found a quick replacement for me and told me buh bye now. I was devastated. I got dizzy and had to go home. I told the school nurse that I had to go home. There was no request for permission. It was a statement of fact. Up until yesterday, some fifty years later, I had always believed that my mind had failed me then and I had failed those other kids. I was fucked. Yup. But that is not what happened. Not at all. A story born in the thick of high emotional and mental distress was accepted as true, for fifty years. Friggin kids, dammit, I was betrayed! They wanted me out and I turned out to be an easy mark. It had nothing to do with me having it right or not. It was about me going away, and they saw to it. I hadn’t dissociated, I was gaslighted. By friends. Welcome to adolescence, me hearty! Point is that it changed my life, and depression made everything different. I went from dream to nightmare in the blink of an eye. Now, ignorance has been set ablaze by knowledge. Nightmare all gone. Dream other dreams and better.

Peace out, y’all. Goof gloriously.


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