July 1, 2016The PTSD Poetry Project, A TBI Poem
and personal journal entry for today
“The 3 Day Phenomena”
Joy explodes in me to see my friend turn into the driveway
Mimosas had been discussed the night before
Instead we go to a Central American Café
We discuss all my goings on
I talk about my poetry readings
I talk about people who are being inappropriate
I talk about the live streaming
She’s fascinated by
What she calls my
“living your inner life out loud”
My love life is much discussed
My future hopes for my poetry project, my book
I look across the table to realize
I know her, I remember whose mother she is
I remember how long we’ve been acquainted
Yet the three days passed a few weeks before
All there is instead
Is the joy of communicating about my past month
With someone I am certain knows me well
The joy in my heart tells no lie
We are friends
This has not gone away inside my injured mind
I have a book of remembrances
I have a book to tell me who people are
This book reminds me after three days
I perhaps will never be fully whole
My brain injured,healed
Not permanently damaged
Yet the three days are my charm
The three days after which
I forget who you are
“The Three Day Phenomena”
July 1, 2016
Personal Journal entry & Poem for The PTSD Poetry Project
about live after Traumatic Brain Injury
My friend picks me up and I’m excited to spend time with her. It’s been a long series of weeks since we last talked in person. Texts have been exchanged and this week I spontaneously asked for a breakfast meet up. We’d talked about starting the day with mimosas, but they were nowhere to be found. Instead we drive to a Central American café to eat. New York style seating, noisy environment and wonderful food to share with this lovely friend.
She asks how this month has gone and I share with this friend of several years. She knows so much of what I’ve been through, what my life was like in all it’s ‘befores’ and it’s afters. I share about my poetry project, the live streaming which fascinates her. She has always said I seem to ‘live my inner life out loud’ and this has become a truth. I share about the issues of people tendering inappropriateness my way.This is something which only serves to confuse me and we discuss this for a bit. Next I share about my love life. I share about my future hopes for my project. It’s exciting to share with someone who has knowledge of who I was in all my ‘befores’.
I think this is what I miss the most about my life in all it’s afters. There are friends I only keep in touch with on Facebook who knew me 15 years ago or more. They’d seen me through divorce, falling in love, moving to a new country and my return home. They’d seen the changes in me, loved me in spite of all those unknowns I would not speak about. They saw the devastation when I was told I was to be left here in the United States. They supported me when I chose to move away from all of them. Moved away from, yet not forgotten.
Sometimes I miss the comfort a friend to hold me during my storms. Then I stand up and realize I am happy in my alone life. I have created something which will outlive me and this is not a bad thing. Having come full circle back to the roots of my creativity, to sketch, to draw and to write creatively has been a gift. Yet I still have those moments I wish for the closest of friends to just simply hold my damned hand while I cry.
I look across this table at my dear friend with whom there is history. I know her, but do I remember her? Sometimes not. Most times I am joyful in knowing we have become friends after the storms of my life. Before those times we were merely acquaintances who saw each other three times a week. Each day I write in my journal by hand and talk to myself about those in my life I want to never forget. These are the important ones who I may not interact with each day or every other day, but are also ones I want to remember without having the constant ‘do overs’. These moments of meeting and recognizing them with happiness, knowing we are friends, yet not really remembering them.
See, I have written about them inside my private book, one which is more than a journal. I do this to remember them. I know who they are to me, why they are important, what is going on in their lives. After three days of no contact the memory of them begins to be in a fog. I try hard to look at them, to know them. I go back to this book and read, I read texts, listen to video chats. Yet it is all as if I were reading a book about someone else. I know they are important to me, I know this. My mind will not let go of this fact. But memory? This is the fickle hidden shame. It is the one thing which constantly reminds me I may never be completely whole again. It reminds me my life will always be one of hard work to remember who people are and exactly who they are to me in my day to day life.
This week has been one of complete honestly with those near and dear to me. It has been a time of becoming emotionally raw in order to explain this three day phenomena. I’ve baldly explained it in order to allow those who want to leave, to leave. I know I am a lot of work, but I also know day to day I am happy to be alone in my life. There are still those times I wish for more, the need for a companion to merely hold my hand and let me be real. To let me cry.
As a new dear friend said, they will always be inside my book. She had no clue how spot on this statement was. So I continue to document in this book of people who I deem important to me and write details about them inside it. This book which is my lifeline for the moments beyond the three days when I begin to forget who those people are.