Birthday

I  am nine today!
Surgery,
inside and out
has left scar lines
marking
  birth of one
    burden of two
      escape of my heart from its own prison.

Nine years old,
each day
      an open,
        healing,
          resilient

Mama
greets herself,
       her life,
         her children.

   

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“Hi, I’m Heidi, and I’m codependent”

I turned two last month.
Two years of throwing my hat
In the ring of recovery.
Celebrating the small victories:
Personal space to write this alone
without feeling guilt.
Setting boundaries so I do not invite
anyone and everyone
to walk all over me.
Fiercely drawing a line with my children
that they alone
choose how to feel and how to react.
A lifelong war
with no end.
Every sunrise,
a different battle,
a new chance
to redeem failed chances
to reclaim
Heidi, freedom.

walking alone

Yes, I see you, sir.
My eyes open,
Looking straight into yours.
My youthful heart would have looked for your approval.
My older heart kinder, stronger, wiser,
needs nothing from you
except to let you know,
for whatever reason
you may be compelled
to try and violate
my integrity,
my body,
or my spirit,
I am prepared to fight
until my last breath.

dark

Wandering, trudging, heaving with burden.
Nothing light enough to live for,
inside or outside the skin.

Shrouded, clouded, muffled, grey.
Nothing rosy enough to live for
inside or outside the skin.

Fear, emptiness, sleepiness, end-of-the-world-edness.
Depression
has seduced me yet againĀ 
inside and outside my skin.

treehouse

Good bye, my treehouse.
Many a night you have sheltered me
from his storms and
my floods.
Your second story windows,
caked with century’s-old paint,
carried me into your refuge
so I could rest in your shade,
hear my heart whispering in your leaves,
feel safe in your strong boughs.
Your openness surprised and challenged me.
Many found their way in:
a pregnant squirrel,
mice, a
stray cat,
bird,
a dog I now call my own, and
my beloved soulmate.
A refuge for all.
Now I leave you,
Stronger, blessed, wiser,
For a brave place in the sun,
For a place to no longer shelter from life,
but live,
in love and trial and joy.
I will always be grateful for you,
my dear treehouse,
for helping me heal and,
finally,
hear my heart.

away

I’ve been away.
This happens more often and for longer periods than I’d like.
Flatness, greyness surround me.
I cannot rest, yet
I cannot stop.
Yet I still move.
Lightness of voice, foot, and heart all but worn away,
One day waking me
to nothing but
my fears,
of being alone
of making a mistake,
of being a mistake.
Yet I do not give up
but look down
and untie myself from my
self-imposed straight jacket, muzzle.
And I rest.
I dare laugh through the encompassing bleakness,
and reach out
to find
I  home again.

Old tricks

Sitting there, with baited hook,
hoping I will take your bait,
good wife that I am,
and save you from your feelings.
Trying again,
as the victim,
Begging me to take your bait
as I was the one who made you use it in the first place.
And last,
raging now,
yelling that this the only bait I will ever get,
and I have to take it.
I am sorry,
my dear ex husband,
but,
no thanks.
Though it has been a long
fifteen years,
I am proud to say that
your bait no longer
works on me.

raging at anyone who will cross tour path,

lost and found

Running so far
so fast
too long.
Standing
amidst the throngs,
the vacation,
the rides,
the lines,
I lost sight of you
of hope
of me.
I’ve looked everywhere
for you,
dear little one
and, of course,
I finally found you where you were all along,
waiting to be let back in
to my heart.

Gifted

Dearest Jonathan,
I have tried so hard
for you,
big of heart and kind of soul,
to be your advocate.
In your endless thirst for knowledge, in your just mere
beginnings of life.
Time and again,
I have not been able to lift you
Over his mighty wall of
Fear
Of the unknown
Fear
Of his new wife
Fear
Of your success being greater than his.
On good days,
I try to walk around his wall,
on sad days,
I cry, slumped against it,
on worse days,
I bloody my fists to get through.
I hope and pray,
Beautiful son,
Someday you will no longer see your dad as a wall to your success,
But, simply, sadly, the fear he has become.