Stigma blog: The Cross

When I was committed to the State Hospital for the insane at Warm Springs, I had a few conversations with the priest there and attended services there as well. Fr. Pins gave me a rosary which I still have and I hung of my door where I live now as a protection. Well, the owner of the place decided to strictly enforce a fair housing rule from the federal government that no one can display religious symbols of any kind. So, I took down my rosary from my door.

One my neighbors, Lisa, had a cross someone had given her and she had it displayed and she, too, took it down for the same reason. Not that long afterwards, both she and I had our medications stolen. That really unhinged the both of us in a very big way. I am not sure she ever recovered and while I definitely do not know the whole story, she and her disabled daughter were eventually evicted.

Her daughter and I had bonded because she’d had surgery to remove a brain tumor and had only one-third of her brain left. She lost the ability to order and organize, too, after that as I did after shock treatments (ECTs). Amanda also said she only had a 5th grade math level now and before she was really good in math. That got my attention because I tested only at that level now as well. I had done well enough on the GREs to get into Stanford Grad School and while I did not go far in math, I was told I had abilities in higher math because of my perfect score on Raven’s Progressive Matrices test. And I used to do really well with computers but now I just stink with them.

So, Amanda was actually the one evicted and she now will not be eligible for public housing because of the eviction. I think that really is the pits. She is far more disabled than I because I have made it my hobby to study neuroplasticity and heal my brain. I have a long ways to go but I like Dr. Daniel Amen, M.D.’s work and his suggestions. And recovery is my job.

My goal at Vocational Rehabiliation has been “recovery writer” and this blog is part of that goal. Of course, I have enemies of my recovery and all addicts do. The most formidable enemy is addressed in the book: The Enemy Within: Encountering and Conquering the Dark Side by Mark and Elizabeth Clare Prophet. So, what is detailed in there about dealing with my internal enemy, the carnal mind, which scripture says is enmity with G-d, is key to my recovery.

I gave my notice where I live because it turns out they may have found I have done wrong. I did not do it on purpose and if I did, then I am sure I will have to pay the price to the max. I am okay with that if it is so. I do not know where I will go or how I will pay for the move or anything of the sort. All I know is that I will move out by one month from yesterday.

I can see the handwriting on the wall. It was time to give notice before they evicted me because I will not have another eviction on my record. My brother ordered my eviction from a place that was bought for me because he could and it served his interests. I have photos of the place. It was not trashed at all. I used it for a home office and planned to go back to work but he opposes that at every juncture. Maybe that is because the trust will dissolve if I am no longer disabled and can make a living. So he will lose his job of dominating me for pay and doing all sorts of accounting that Bernie Madoff’s accountants would envy in its obfuscation. He is practiced at the arts of deception as were they.

Ah, yes, the love of money is the root of all evil. I am recovering from my own money madness and that is my path now. The “Mr. Hyde” within that is my ultimate enemy is the one that conceals and hides and makes my life utter chaos. The trustee only gets to me because I still have a Mr. Hyde that defeats the Dr. Jekyll who is trying to heal me–or refers me to the Great Physician and His medicine of prayer and fasting, as well as work.

So I will be with or without a home in less than a month and it is alright because it is time to find a place to live where I can have my rosary displayed and that place may be my car, which is perfectly fine. It is not cold weather like it was when they evicted Amanda and Lisa. And I have a car that I can sleep in if necessary until I save up for a place where I have a roof.

I am grateful for returning to sanity because I do not expect mercy from one who mercilessly evicted a woman with one third of her brain onto the streets. I realize my powerlessness over others and she needs to do what she can to get funding to fix up the property. I wish her the best. My Saviour teaches, love your enemies. Pray for those who despitefully use you and persecute you. And resentments lead me straight to my drugs of choice as is taught in recovery books.

And of course, no experience is lost upon a writer, as my first journalism teacher taught. The experience should make for a great blog, even if it write if from a public library computer. I am stoked because I am on my way to gainful work!

******Update: I did not become homeless. No human being helped me out of my mess nor tried to help. It was truly divine intervention, as I gave prayers for the will of God with a CD and He came through and gave me focus and energy to get the job done. Mel was also at the vet clinic in the town where I live and his heart close by during a time of terrible suffering for him made me determined to step up to the plate.

Also, Amanda may not have that on her record, as the judge might have arranged for some sort of way for her to escape the trap she was put in. It turns out the Adult Protective Services worker failed her as she failed me. She did not help her as she was supposed to do. She really needs a welfare check called on her. Maybe I will ask the governor to check on her. Let’s see if he cares.

And I have heard that Lisa and Amanda are doing alright in another state. Maybe they were able to find help and some people that care in another state. Here people just put their judgments on them, it seemed to me, and most everyone always wanted to pass the buck and blame. But the judge may have judged justly.

So, mea culpa:  I could not handle going to their court case because I was nearly non-functional myself. It was way too close to home. Their being evicted was a trigger for my stints at homelessness and having the eviction notice, although not legal, given me by my brother’s attorney, was front and center in my consciousness. That was a few years ago, but my brother did not one thing to prevent me from becoming homeless and I think he was gunning for it. He lied to the property owner about paying off the balance each month, which was stupid because it is so easily proven not to be the case. It could have gotten me in really hot water, but my defense was the truth.

Now, though, I have gotten through another trial by fire of my own. I want to find out what happened to the APS woman with whom I have a history. She blocks my emails and doesn’t answer my phone calls. She messed up investigating my brother and fell for his Bernie Madoff accounting tricks and did not get a lawyer to look at the trust violations. So, I just thought it was because I was scum to her but for her to treat Amanda like that, who has a far better heart than I do, and is missing one-third of her brain from cancer surgery, is just rotten. So maybe the worker needs an intervention. Maybe she does. Sometimes being like a dog with a bone in its mouth who will not back down, as a editor described me when she gave me an assignment, is necessary to get a job done. And I can really be a cantankerous b*itch, to be sure.

Dr. Roy Allan Ginsburg, former psychiatrist said I had the personality of a “chubby Cocker Spaniel, with the tail wagging the dog.” No more. Today I announced my job plans to my psychiatrist and said, you probably won’t like it. Later, I said I don’t care if you don’t like it. I also said I was over doing exactly what psychiatrists told me about how to live me life, such as what to study in school or not and what job to take. I did not care if he did not like my plans. And I meant it. In the end, he was fine with it and he really has not tried to tell me what to do like the others. He said that my executive functioning was working perfectly well in my decision. So, I feel much better right now because people-pleasing is an affliction, not a positive character trait. And being an Akita b*tch is a good thing in hunting down the truth.

I left a situation where I was told I could not write to others, and I said well, I am going to leave for my recovery. I did. It turned out for the best because the situation was itself unsustainable in so many ways. And I did not walk in fear of the man venting on me when he had a bad day, like my dad would do. I was done taking the brunt of it and I said so. I told him he needed to grow a spine and I told it to his face. I was not the problem in that situation and I knew it. So, I have recovery and am writing about it, and that is a real win for me.

No one has to like my recovery. I am not doing it for them. I do not want followers. I do not. This is a solo path and I am fine with that solitude. Today, I know He is with me. I know that for a fact. And that makes it more than worth it. My Guardian Angel has come through once again, thanks be to God and that angel is my conscience which is backed up by St. Thomas More, my patron saint and the patron saint of lawyers, who got me through college. In the end, as I left the psychiatrist with the words, “thank you for dealing with my shrew,” I can echo those words to my patron because he is an expert at shrew-taming—or in my case, shrew-training because he uses some of those traits when properly channeled, to his purposes. When I have to, I can really stand my ground, just as an Akita is bred to stand down a bear.

I really love the saying now, more than ever: “rejection is God’s protection.” The song “Holy Water” washed over me today, as a River Island of baptismal love from a Father who truly cares. My meds mysteriously showed up in my place when I was cleaning for the inspection and the Cross is just a part of me now, as an ash wood cross given me. I bear those scars and so does Splendid High and we always will, but he is a racing warrior and he is teaching me to run again. Life is good, praise Him!





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