Well, the roommate search was a bust. After the chimera fellow responded for the third time, I shut the whole thing down. If a guy’s best pitch is that he absorbed his deceased female twin’s organs in the womb, what’s next?
Now, to make ends meet, I needed to find another place to live. After residing in a basement apartment for five years, this was probably a good thing. Such relief I felt when I gave up the roommate idea. The Tiny House Lady would have to find other accommodations to set up her tiny house trial run. She was very excited, stating that she looked forward to dividing the tiny bedroom into four tinier rooms. “Only folding furniture,” she said.
My current landlord, as far as landlords go, is pretty decent. Yeah, there was that rent hike, but I expected it in this housing market. So, I decided to transfer to one of their other properties. It all happened very fast… I barely had time to recover from the shock of natural light. Wow! The colors, the textures!
I originally moved into the basement to escape the tormenting heat of life on the third floor of an old, albeit very lovely building. I had just survived a psychotic break brought on by an intense heat wave. I sat huddled next to my window a/c unit, popsicle in hand, plotting every possible escape route from the fire I was convinced would engulf the whole building in flames. I had all my bags packed, lining the hallway in specific order. Seriously, I was out there.
In the subterranean, my sensory perceptions were no longer overwhelmed, I didn’t have to worry about my cat who had suffered heat stroke during the hot summer. Holding onto some sanity would also be a plus.
I was dating Dave at the time, an eleven year relationship that ended abruptly this past January, at Brick House Pizzeria over on Sandy Boulevard. Dave said he decided it was time to have kids, and I’m not the mothering type. This happened while we sat in a padded vinyl booth waiting for our half-and-half pizza. I ran from the restaurant, hearing Dave’s voice say the strangest string of words, “I didn’t think it would be that big of a deal…” And yes, he waited for the pizza.
First the broken heart, then the anger, along with the oddest sense of betrayal that still can’t be described. I need to mention that Dave is turning 60 years old, so he’ll be pushing 70 by the time he has someone to play video games with. We never wanted kids… zero population growth, the anti-American Dream. This was truly baffling. And no! I don’t have a peri-menopausal death wish to have a child at nearly 50– not that I was even one of his options. Who wants to be an option, anyway?
The November move was filled with the good and the bad, but always with the consistent undercurrent of something remarkably bizarre.
The Sun Enters Scorpio
(& some other astrology stuff I don’t understand)
After the improbable chain of events over the weekend of my move, I decided it was time to check the astrology forecast. Something strange and rare had to be happening in the sky, right? I guess I was looking for a reason, an explanation… and the only thing that made sense was a magical view of the world.
Dark and intense Scorpio entered the sun on moving day #1. According to one astrology site, it was a good time to buy binoculars. My overall take: Time to empty my drawers of fading dreams.
Even amidst the chaos, I immediately felt at home in my new place. The window sills were below my shoulders! I could see whole people, not just their feet! I did feel a little exposed, not being used to so much light and an actual view of the outside world… the metaphor was perfect.
You know when you’re in something, a dysfunctional relationship for example, it’s hard to see the whole truth. Being objective often takes a big dose of reality brought on by external factors. Well, I had a dysfunctional relationship with the basement. Now that I’m out, I see how it messed with my mental state, my ability to feel socially acceptable and part of a community.
When I went underground a few years ago, it was in a mentally-unstable twisted way that I wanted to be completely isolated in my own world. I had been suffering as a result of trauma, and thought maybe if I kept myself apart from typical reality, the suffering would end. Not an effective thought pattern… and for the record, it doesn’t work.
It’s been almost seven years since the assault, rape by a stranger. I had imagined what it might be like to be in that frightening situation, how I would fight, how I would miraculously get away. Sadly, I found that some people are just stronger than you. I didn’t scream… I tried fight, flight and freeze.
Nobody knew, not even Dave. After the assault, even holding hands felt suffocating. I began to retreat more and more to underground isolation.
I’d been through enough therapy to know that it wasn’t my fault, that the shame would be overwhelming and that speaking out is empowering. I was surprised by my decision… I had always believed in a mission for justice. Instead, rather than face him in court, I wrote this poem over the two years following the assault:
Well, that’s kind of a conversation stopper.
Venus Trine to Pluto
Ahh… stay in a place of love (strange segue). Well, I do love the bizarre. That magical feeling of slight dissociation, before it becomes full blown psychosis. When you feel like you’re in a one-way bubble, and you can see everything, but nothing can see you. It feels like universal synchronicity is on your side, and everything seems to fall into place. The weirder it gets, the more it makes sense. It’s like a warm blanket of absurdity.
Amidst the odd events that kept piling up, I ran into Dave for the first time since January. We were in our cars and he made a left while I sat at the red light. My spontaneous reaction was to laugh, and laugh and laugh. I had reached that point. Humor was by my side during that trip to drop off another load. I thought, “Dave, you can’t put a baby seat in that two-seater sports car.”
Next load… sobbing.
Two days after the break-up, Dave came over and we had an awful, unkind exchange– an attempt at that elusive thing called closure. Somewhere in the midst, he took a nap on my couch. It was weird. Later that day I phoned the mental health crisis line… something I had done in the past at times of great distress. It just didn’t help. I needed human connection, to speak to a professional in the flesh. I felt crazy.
I took off for the emergency room, where they told me I’d have to wait two or three hours to talk to a social worker. It was pretty obvious that was not going to work. How could I sit still for that long in a room full of oxygen tanks and lacerations? In the short time I was in the emergency room, someone entirely encased my truck in industrial strength saran wrap. Yes, of all the back to back cars on the street they chose my truck. In their defense, they put a pvc pipe around my antenna so it wouldn’t break.
It didn’t really phase me at the time, though I’d never heard of such a thing. I just thought, “Of course this should happen”. Around and around I went, unwrapping, thinking of nothing… and thinking of nothing was a great relief.
Mars Opposes Chiron
Apparently, this is a time to notice a chink in one’s armor… a painful awareness that despite our best efforts, we keep getting knocked down.
I realize that I keep alluding to a string of bizarre events that I haven’t really made much mention of. It really wasn’t an event, it was a state of being. Throughout the day I felt strength, vulnerability, compassion, heightened awareness. There was always a sense of separation from reality. Maybe that separation was my mind’s way of protecting me from how intense things really were.
The whole thing makes me contemplate reason vs. cause. Guess I’ll save that for another discussion.
Mercury Exits the Shadow Zone
Day #2 was a bit more level. Of course it was another heavy day, but in a much different way. Applause for Mercury fully out of retrograde! What does that even mean? I hear people say, “Oh, Mercury is in retrograde, that must be why”.
So, I looked it up. One fascinating tip for these periods is to pack an emergency road kit. It is also advised to not believe everything you hear. There are several phases to the retrograde cycle… the final one being the ‘Post Shadow Period’ during which Mercury begins to move forward again. But be warned, even on this last day of the cycle, back up your computer and pay close attention to details. Wait until tomorrow to make life-changing decisions.
The Earth, at Last
After all the knocking down and getting back up over the past month, I’m finally returning to my own forward movement. I celebrate my feet set firmly on the earth, taking one step at a time.
Goodbye, Rabbit Hole, until we meet again.