Off-The-Wall—A Street Survival Journal of Recovery

Being not just a survivor, but to strive to thrive is why I moved to another state. Wherever you go, there you are, of course, and I brought with me all my considerable baggage and challenges. It’s not like I expected them to magically disappear in a “geographical cure” which recovery veterans say never works.

I moved myself and my equine partner so that I could work again. Often it seems that what I have to do to have recovery is a full time job. It is my work because without it, I have not one iota of a chance to find financial freedom from the financial abuser.

This Father’s Day is the first one where I know of my birth father and can celebrate his giving me life along with my birth mother. Both were artists. Eugene Kibbe was a photographer and his works were exhibited in a national gallery.

I can’t say I inherited his level of talent but I have been paid for photos when I worked as a health reporter. I used a disposable camera then.

Now, as I type this on my iPhone, I realize that while my financial overlord is fine with my not having had a functional computer for a year, I do have an awesome camera on this phone. Today I will celebrate my father by taking photos of the stunning sunset at the farm where my equine partner-in-grime boards.

On this, the longest day of the year, I celebrate summer solstice with gratitude to my father and leave behind any and all thought of what a fallen father of the Church did that so traumatized me that I have been disabled since the sexual assault.

I remain a handicapped reporter. On Earth Day, I took a volunteer weather spotter training and reported earlier this month on a flooded road. I wasn’t able to submit a photo because of the conditions when driving, though. I’ll try to do better next time.

I also cannot say that I rise to the level of race horses who are given extra weight to make the contests fairer. My handicap was not bestowed upon me for any other reason than the lust of a man who wanted a free ride.

I’m not winning any races, either. It’s no contest because just surviving is winning in this game of Church abuse. I have lived long enough to see the exposure of what goes on unabated. And in a few days it will be the Feast Day of St. Thomas More, patron saint of lawyers and adopted children. Whatever happens, I will celebrate him because I know he cares about victims even if it seems few others care enough to actually stop the soul slaughter.

For now, there is a barn cat who bites when he wants attention. His name is Church (after a Stephen King character). A Church that bites is not something new to me. So I stay clear for my own health because no one is going to pick up the tab for my hospital bills. And Uncle Sam ought not to have to pay when I know that I am putting myself in harm’s way to have traumatic wounds inflicted.

Church is great at catching mice. That’s his job there and his teeth are useful. A Church of predators is not so useful to sheep who want protection from wolves. Far be it for me to try to tell the Vatican what to do about their problem. I guess I just keep trying the prescription for healing given by the Founder: “this kind goeth out only by prayer and fasting.”

That’s my plan to find financial freedom. I learned through the years that I can trust the Salvation Army to pray with me when I am desperate, as I was when I needed to find a new place to board. They were there for me years ago when I was kicked out on the streets by my family. And I know they will help anyone of any background always. Thank you Major Garrett of Lexington Salvation Army for praying with me, for me! Praying the Our Father with you truly helped and I am grateful to you for being a true shepherd!

I will celebrate today the answer to those prayers with a photoshoot. May the long winter of my soul’s discontent become a glorious summer of my soul’s ascent out of madness—captured on camera…

Off-the-Wall: A Street Survival Journal—the stigma of living in The Nut House for Horseaholics on Chinese New Year

The Year Of the Ox began eventfully with Splendid High. He’s completing his tour of the Equine Inns in the area around the Horse Capital of the World: Lexington, Kentucky. Mother Nature has been more of a bear than on it to the area with a brutal ice storm event that has been a frozen Hell for most anyone with livestock or those with cars or who just want to survive—so just about everyone.

Splendid High, known as Mel, is sampling his last and favorite Equine Inn experience at A Little Bit Of Horse Haven. We have a few days left there but The Chinese New Year yesterday brought an unexpected surprise. While I was looking at a new place for him with an Irish horseman in Georgetown, I received a message from the proprietor of the Horse Haven. Of course, it alarmed me to see it on my phone, but I finished out checking out the possible new digs for Mel where he would learn to jump with a person on him.

He’s given me all sorts of indications that he wants to jump, such as at the Horse Lodge a few weeks ago he leaped up in the air over the goats and did a capriole and kicked out—while in hand—in response to the goats getting his goat once again. Mel is not a goat fan.

He does like having mule neighbors at the Horse Haven because he feels safe, as they will smoke any nasty critters with impunity including deer who kicked him in the head a few months back and fractured his skull between his eyes. That is the most likely scenario to me for how he got the huge protrusion between his eyes at The Stables at Queenslake. Deer do have a nasty kick and they were after his high value food I stupidly fed him on the ground in the turnout.

Trust me about deer, I lived in Absarokee, Montana which is run by the deer. People stupidly feed them although it’s rightly against the law and they roam around causing extreme hazard. Deer carcasses line the highway where miners drive in super fast buses to fuel the State’s economic engine, the Stillwater Mine. One accident with one of those buses would cripple the State’s greatest contributor to the tax base and cause anguish to many families whose breadwinners depend upon the lucrative jobs there. The deer still have some kind of suicidal desire to jump out in front of speeding 4 wheel drive trucks with grill guards. And the carnage piles up, but I digress.

Now Mel is safe in a stall at a time when many Thoroughbreds were at risk with what mean tricks Mother Nature desired to pull out of her rabbit’s hat. This ice storm was freezing rain that poured down for hours and hours and left an inch of ice coating my entire vehicle. Subarus rock, though, and I made the trek to Mel 30 minutes away to the Horse Haven which I was advised was too icy to risk driving in the driveway.

Well, my little Impreza drove on black ice at 17 below zero when no truckers were on Highway 3 outside of Billings. They heeded the warning not to drive that day, but the Southern Belle owner of the barn where Mel was then living needed supplies and I had my little compact Subaru with Winterforce tires and I made it there and back although she was stuck with her 4 wheel drive Dodge Ram truck. I just drove really slowly and was happy because no one was on the road but dumb me. It was that dangerous and I risked my life and I knew it but I felt the drive to get the supplies to a woman who gave me the chance to have a horse again when no one else would.

Love—it’s what makes a Subaru and Subaru. And how I loved Rimrock Subaru’s ninja Master Mechanic Tim who worked his superhero powers to keep my two cars on the road despite sabotage by others. Someone once actually drained the oil from my Outback in Absarokee and they carefully documented it. God bless all their hearts at Rimrock Subaru. I really miss them.

So what was the New Year surprise in Mel’s and my world and why did the proprietor call? To be continued…

Off-the-Wall—A Street Survival Journal—the stigma of fear of fire

I escaped from what to me was an unacceptable risk of fire. It was truly a Godsend because I did not wait for the barn owner to deal with what the barn manager said was a fire hazard. I gave notice and then informed the fire department of what the barn manager said. Then I was given notice by the barn owner to leave in 10 days. And I did.

I cannot say why I keep finding myself in these situations but I do know what did not work at all and that was to trust the barn owner in 2012 to do the right thing. She didn’t and the tragic loss of lives was beyond horrendous.

I had had a meltdown in the process and that did not work well for me at all. So this time I did not go there and just did what I needed to do to get my equine partner to a safe place. I did not talk about it with anyone other than those I mentioned above.

I found in the process that I am still a reporter. I just am. And I paid a huge price for reporting to the fire department. This is a gigantic disruption in my life. But I have no regrets at all.

My guardian angel got me through this ordeal. I know that for sure and now I can move on to find a longer term place to board.

There is a light at the end of this tunnel of fire nightmares. Tonight I drove through the Southern Lights display at the Horsepark. I loved spending the fee to go through it because it was truly an extravaganza. I could leave the puny competition to the show behind and walk away and instead support a place that really cares about horses.

I had looked for the Christmas Star but did not see it. Instead that day I witnessed Mel’s total love and affection for Dr. Carlos’ after he reset his shoe along with Dr Craig. Their dedication to truly caring for horses was the Christmas Star I saw as the love flowed from Mel’s heart to theirs in gratitude. It was one of the most tender moments I have ever witnessed. Thank goodness for professionals who care, as they touch Mel’s heart deeply and warm my own as well.

Off-the-Wall Street—A Journal: 8-18-2020—The Stigma upon the biggest marks of all

If you are on the express way to financial ruin, to whom do you turn? If it’s American “Excess” as financial guru Dave Ramsey calls the iconic American Express, what then?

What if that company is there for you when no one else is, including the guru himself? If I’d been fortunate enough to be able to follow his advice when I first studied at his financial university, I would be in worse trouble than I am now.

I still have a credit rating because I haven’t cut up all my cards as he recommends. If I had, and then had no credit rating I could not have escaped the oppressive situation nor could I rent a new place because renting now involves credit checks.

Many, many years ago a psychiatrist wanted me to cut up my AmEx card because of course no bipolar patient could handle one. Except I once had a credit score of over 800 until a financial abuser knocked it down a bit with his twisted take on dominating my life through lording over my inheritance.

So at least American Express has the good sense and good business sense to profit by lending me money and extending credit to me. Dave Ramsey’s system seems to work well for many but for someone with a monkey on her back of a financial abuser who is fine with a disabled brain injured woman he tried to get rediagnosed as paranoid schizophrenic driving cross country alone with no funding, it’s not ideal.

No big deal. The abuser is making the case for oversight of special needs trusts in his continuing dominating ways devoid of trustworthiness.

Would you ever want to give the account number of your credit card to someone who stood back and hoped you’d crash and burn cross-country? Crazy idea, right?

Keep hoping, Bro’…You’re the reason the laws need to change and you are making that case on a daily basis…

Off-the-Wall—a Street Smart Journal: Staring Down Homelessness 7-28-20

When you have been prescribed a treatment by a psychiatrist who is able and willing to take you to court to commit you, you tend more towards compliance. I guess that’s the idea for those whose job it is to care for the mentally ill.

Well, it worked. I did find an incredible equine partner after being ordered to by my former doctor. He said repeatedly, you have to get another horse. There is nothing we can do for you here ( at the largest mental health center in the State) that will help you as much as Jack helped you. Jack had been on my treatment team and I lost him in a tragedy that sent me into a tailspin that caused my commitment to the State Hospital. The psychiatrist who was the director of the center said my case was the worst case of stigma against a mentally ill person he had ever known. Still, he pressed me to do the impossible and try again.

There was no way I wanted a repeat of having another treasured partner undergo what Jack did. I was a sitting duck with him and had no way to escape a terrible fate. I had no truck nor trailer and no way to get him to safety.

So I was guided to his successor and a place for him and was promised by the then veterinarian that he would be able to get him to care if needed.

Things change and the barn manager had issues and I needed to move Mel because he would not eat the hay and I fed him myself twice a day. I could tell that an episode was coming on and I may be forced to go to the hospital and no one would have fed him hay he’d eat.

So thankfully I found a hauler I could hire to move Mel and I did. I did end up in the psych ward and came back to Mel having a bone infection that nearly cost his life.

He had to have surgery for it and I will be forever grateful that the veterinarian’s fiancée picked him up and took him to the clinic. He was far away from the clinic so it took some time. If she had not done it, I am sure Mel would be dead.

Transportation has always been a life and death matter in my mind, but to the lord over my inheritance, the trustee of my special needs trust, it is a mode of control and a way to assert power. So my brother who makes good money denying me needed care and tries to block my recovery and return to work in any way he can, repeatedly, has determined not to have me have vital transportation for what is essentially irreplaceable medicine that is also a living being who himself requires care.

The State does not and should not pay for this prescribed medicine. Mel is legally a service animal in this State. A Special Needs Trust is a legal instrument set up for disabled people to get services and care that are outside what the State can provide.

Now once again, I face the issue of transportation for Mel to get vital veterinary care for an issue that could end his life if not addressed. So my own disorder flared up and I was on edge.

When the hauler talked about cancelling the cross country trip to the best veterinary care, I did indeed speak my mind in no uncertain terms. Maybe I was out of line.

My wallet and cell phone were stolen later and I was homeless and it took some time for me to regroup and face the fact of yet another transportation crisis.

I wanted to find a way to turn this sour lemon into a lemonade, I wrote to the hauler. Today, I found it. The Salvation Army in the horse capital of the world has a fundraiser for kids in crisis who are facing homelessness. It’s called LemonAid and Mel and I donated to Hank the Horse’s fundraiser.

I am determined not to be a drain on resources but a working, contributing tax paying home owner in the new State. And I am saving $1,500. By booking Mel on the best ride there—in a box stall with the Brook Ledge equine transporters who moved American Pharaoh throughout the country. I call that not just lemonade but the finest lemon bars or lemon meringue pie possible to this recovering sugar junkie somehow made kosher for me. The taste of victory is the sweetness I truly seek as we move to a place where Brook Ledge has a headquarters and where Thoroughbreds are highly valued for their contributions to the health, welfare and economy of Kentucky.

I can now rest easy that he will have transportation from professionals and I can get out of their way and let them do their job and not interfere at all. What a relief!

Now to get myself there, as well…The Salvation Army helped me by printing out directions to drive to Kentucky since AAA can’t get them to me in time. And they were kind enough to pray for me, with me. Although it is still a daunting task to drive myself there with this fickle brain, I have more faith now. I have printed directions from the wonderful practical people at the Salvation Army. They are the best!