About Me

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Los Angeles, California
I am 47 and thriving in Southern California. One day at a time.
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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

conflict of schedule

brandon flowers croones me awake at the nonsensical hour of 7am.

oh, how it pains me to type these words, but i dread hearing his creamy falsetto form these words,

"save some face, you know you've only got one, change your ways while you're still young..."

wholly on point, but too close to home for this night owl turned crow, who internally caws when that rock star dissolves my rem into a puddle of disappointment.

i am a certified night owl, "B" person, nocturnal, whatever you wanna throw at me, i'm never gonna wanna get up at 7am...

my limbs literally cramp, my eyes sting, there are rodents gnawing at my gut, and i am one irritated hot mess.

i gulp a disgusting brew of sweet 'n low, hazelnut coffeemate, and, oh yeah, and a bit of coffee and trudge my way, 5 steps over, to the common area. the day begins with "daily reflections" at 7:30 am. during these 20 minutes, we are to declare our intentention for the day. beautiful in theory, but oh, so challenging for this owl plucked bare, morphed lark. my brain remains drugged by the precious foggy strands of REM as i struggle to form a poignant intention.

we do a shared breakfast. 3 people prepare, then 3 different people clean up, and then we usually have an hour to "get ourselves together" before the 10am group.

[this is code for go for a cigarette. i, on the other hand, go into contraband, and spritz my hair into unintentional surrender...]

we have a group at 10am, we can go to the gym between 11 and 1 pm. we have a 2 pm group and a 4 pm group. we are often pulled aside for consultations with dr. cuckoo meds or our weekly hour with the psychiatrist or the two hourly sessions a week with an individual therapist.

in between, i am running back and forth to the "med" room for 9 am, noon, 3pm, 6pm and 9 pm meds.

[emotionally i am like a barometer looking for her spring. fluctuation to the nth degree.]

klean is an emotional workspace, dedicated to the difficult process of recovery; and most days, i feel like i've been riding an raucous merry-go-round, flying off the monkeys bars and zipping down the slides until i vomit profusely.

[i used to sit up, wipe the corners of my mouth and an irrepressible grin would cover my face entire...]

now, it is up and down. backwards and forwards. exhilaration and disgust.

my legs curl around the bars, tightly, protectively; fearful of the fall, but confident enough to let my strawberry blond hair, drag across the sandy playground. this is how everything looks right now. upside down and inside out. it has looked this way for so long, that i don't even know how to stand up straight. literally.

[but i am starting to stretch...]

in the evenings we have dinner with computer time from 5 to 7 pm and 9:30 to 11 pm. we are encouraged to go to aa meetings around 7:30 pm or read aa or na literature in the alternative. this is not your family's camping trip.

so as i walked maggie tonight for all of 8 minutes, supervised, with 3 other clients and their dogs, i gloried in all the normalcy i could soak up. i steeped myself in the sights and sounds of west hollywood, pre dinner. hip-hop bass thumping from passing vehicles, smelling a jasmine bloom from a neighbor's hedge, nodding to a gentleman out for a stroll...and the sublime ordinariness that floated up from santa monica blvd. i could feel the lattes being purchased, the road rage seeping through veins and the chaos and calm that exists just 2 blocks away in a magical, healing hamlet known as cedars-sinai.

the place that has saved my life 3 times.

and now this place, klean, is saving me, too. teaching me how to swing less violently. for this little redhead swings until she can't see, and that's just leaves you nauseous, with a sore bum.

or in rehab.

[as an aside...i want to thank everyone so much for all the messages. i have such limited computer and phone time, that it is taking me a long time to respond to everyone. our schedule is jam-packed, and i have to be careful not to get sick because of my kidney, so i am resting on breaks, too...thank you erika for the beautiful card i received today...all of your loving wishes are stored in my heart and keeping me strong...]


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