random love

Inpatient

Inpatientwas a blur and a huge cliché but with one unforgettable connection.

I don’t know how I got to thinking about this woman today.
But here we are…

Even the most severely medicated patient feels her cold wall of silence, one that staunchly taunts the staff: just try to get me to give anything up. Because no.
And fuck you.

But I meet her gaze one day and it hits me- she is trying so hard to keep it together, which makes me instantly care about her. She’s not okay but she is fighting so hard to convince herself otherwise. Call it survivor’s instinct but we identify something in each other, which leads to our first conversation on some bench-table thing outside. It feels so nice, being outside; the natural light a warm and welcome relief from many a fluorescent bulb.

She is tough.
And not just because she’s a damn tough gang member who has been living The Bluest Eye. But because she is committed to dealing with her demons, regardless of how she is perceived by her biological family (completely untrustworthy), her gang family (traitor), the father of her child (unworthy). Her life doesn’t allow for a mental health check-out without some severe consequences. So she has to make this count.

As she tells me her story, my heart sheds shocked tears.
She was Pecola.

Later that night, as I sit in my room and process, reprocess what she shared, I cry for her. Hard.

Two days later, when someone open-shuts the door to her group therapy session I happen to catch a quick earful. I hear her crying for herself. I think it’s the first time she has let herself cry in a long time. Possibly ever.

It was both of our first times in this kind of place.
I never did go back.
I never saw her again but to this day, ten years later, my heart crosses its fingers for her.

Advertisements
Standard
about Japan

Suicide

Truth or tactwins Japan’s popularity contest.

But.

For the first time in 15 years it’s fallen below 30,000 people.

Yay.

My brain can’t really relate to those figures so I need an explanation in this vein:
Prior to 2012, 30,000+ people committed suicide a year= 1 suicide every 15 minutes.
2012 proud stats, 27,766 suicides committed= 1 suicide every 20 minutes.

I get that statistics and accuracy aren’t really a sure thing but when the aforementioned figures are also supported here and there, my skeptical ass knows those numbers aren’t so far off.

So combine an historically proud suicide method with the present-day ubiquity of said death and two things happen: a strange romanticism surrounding suicide emerges and desensitization strikes.

Regarding a certain romanticism, there’s a forest- Aokigahara Forest (Sea of Trees) that became an extraordinarily popular suicide spot after the novel Kuroi Jukai (the black sea of trees) by Seicho Matsumoto was published.  It’s a beautiful site that when combined with a lyrical work, somehow soft focuses a cruel, selfish and tortuous exit.

I can’t count the number of trains that have been delayed on account of suicide in the one year I’ve lived here.  In fact, if I’m late to work, suicide on the tracks is often assumed and as I write that, I realize I have been thoroughly desensitized.

Sadness.

Suicide isn’t a taboo subject but avoiding that road to perdition- psychotherapy- sure as fuck is.
Yep, I’ll be talking about that before too long.

Topical fact:
Dazai Osamu, writer who really wanted out of this life
1st attempt: solo, with pills.
2nd attempt: with a 19-year-old bar hostess, drowning (beach of Kamakura).  She died.
3rd attempt: solo, hanging.
4th attempt: with his wife, pills.  Both survived.
5th attempt: with his new wife, drowning in the Tamagawa canal.  Both died.

Standard
relationshipping

The brink

This is not love

is not a fun place to be.

I’ve been there and made it back.
I’ve also been the final straw that made a most important person in my life lose their shit.

This was my most disgraceful hour.

Sometimes life deals a truly shit hand, one that bypasses asking why and heads straight to anger, shock and a loss of faith.  This particular hand included an extremely vicious and unrelenting cancer.  When My Person’s mother was diagnosed, everything progressed so rapidly, I have no recollection of those years.  Many years later, it’s still a blur.  I remember specific mundane and major occurrences in extreme detail but it’s amazing how fast five years can whiplash you.

My Person was 868.3 km/539.5 mi. away.  This inter-state commute had paved a familiar course in our lives.  Cancer was a familiar occupant in our household; fucking cancer held all of our attention hostage all the time.  So while MP was trying to keep cancer and its toxic treatment’s effects at bay, what am I doing?

Getting drunk at a bar with someone I should NOT be getting drunk with.  He and I know what’s going to happen.  We are both someone’s boyfriend/girlfriend.  This was not a spontaneous meet, nor an “I got so wasted [fill in the blank]” situation.

Does it even matter that sex didn’t happen?  Not really.  With every passing second after leaving the bar together, I was smashing through years of trust, sometimes wavering but mostly solid and built with love.  How rapidly I  knowingly destroyed said trust was shocking.  I didn’t know I was capable of inflicting hurt like this.  I wouldn’t know the full extent until MP got back.

Why…?

I could say that MP and I had gone through too much at that point in our relationship, that our intense life experiences combined with getting together at such a young age was about to strike us out.

Life experiences included: being rendered homeless, car wrecks, discrimination, almost death, hospitals, hate, death, chronic illness, psych ward, drugs, birth, unemployment, death, therapy, terminal illness, hospitals, mental illness, grief, rehab, alcoholism, motherfucking hospitals.

But really, I was a coward.  

I hinted at wanting out, we had many a fight and breaking up was articulated by us both at various points, but I cheated to force a confrontation that I couldn’t otherwise broach.

I cheated on MP whose mother was suffering from a horrific cancer because I was too weak to have The Talk for real.

No wonder I got the call from the bridge.

It was and will be my one and only cheat.

Standard
about Japan

You are a slutpuppy

You are a slutpuppy

if you show your condoms.
That’s what Japanese guys think.
(This is strictly hetero as people here aren’t too open about sexual gay politics on the real but I’m working on honesting that relevant and interesting part of Japanese life).

Yeah, they don’t think you’re responsible. They aren’t appreciative of your efforts to prevent STDs and pregnancy. They think that you’re a total slutpuppy, regardless of how darn cute you are or how much they want to do you. As my fiercely independent acquaintance succinctly summed it up, “They don’t like it.” And if they don’t have one? Then there’s (usually) no sexing. Apparently, the guys are okay with being 100% responsible for the condoms, which is simultaneously sweet and sexist to me.

On a side note, 1 in 4 women (or 3, depending on your stat source) have had abortions here because that’s way more socially acceptable than being on the pill (which was legalized in 1999). Wanting a birth control script isn’t as difficult as it was a decade ago but not all doctors will write one and all are low-dosage. Heck, prior to 1999, the pill was only available for menstrual disorders, not birth control, which meant they were extremely high hormone doses that were probably proven to feed and cause cancer.

Weird, right? At least to an American who’s used to abortion being such a reliable hot topic and waaay more stigmatizing than taking birth control.

If you’re the type that like facts and figures, check out details here.

Many Japanese guys also sum up having a girlfriend in a word: 面倒くさい (めんどくさいor men•doku•sai)
Literally it translates to: annoying, tiresome, troublesome, you get the idea.
Really what the guys mean is this: bitches be hi-may so no thanks.
And the ladies are none too impressed with their attitude as they think guys these days are emotionally weak and immature.

This plays a huge part as to why folks here aren’t getting married so much or not until way later in life and they sure as hell aren’t having kids.

Standard