Sunday, 15 October 2017

Wherever You Go ... There You Are.

My secret plan to fly to the other side of the world to escape the feelings of the four-year anniversary of my brothers suicide? Foiled. CURSES. I don't want to think about it and I don't want to write about it. I don't want to live it and I don't want to feel it.

Yesterday I had a great lunch with a huge bunch of Glaswegians - literally had to start lip-reading them when they spoke. They were so funny, I'll never see any of them again even after their (drunken) promises to keep in touch. I wasn't drunk well kind of - I can get so far down I get drunk purely on sad. ANNOYANCE for the ten millionth time I wish I didn't feel too much.

Thought I had to check out of my Zed's Dead Hotel today but it's tomorrow! Then I'm off to Edinburgh which I keep saying "Edinberg" in my brain. Heh. 

The world's still the world wherever you are but I'm too far away from Katoomba and pining bad for the boys. Need to get back stat. So I will. My sons will always be the axis of the world to me, as it should be.

                                          Love, straight up.

                                    Holding his brand new second-cousin Harvey last week. 

Off to go for one last walk around the city. It's been real .. I might come back one day, might not. I just know I am so, so much more Scottish than I am Aussie. FINALLY understand why I'm a loud abrasive crude hilarious politically incorrect human. As my brothers father used to say: "Wouldn't trade it for quids."

::

Wrote this post called "Eraser" in 2013, the year Cam died. Inexplicably feel like re-publishing - it's not cheery, it's not a happy ending. it's just what happened oh sweet mystery of life.  

ERASER.



The very first photo of us together. Me in year three, wearing a green t-shirt and blue tracksuit top. Him in baby white, smiling because he recognised a kindred.

This post is shit already. If anybody has a problem with me talking inappropriately about suicide, I ask you, is suicide appropriate? When is the appropriate time?

Dentist: 9.30
Lunch meeting
Dry cleaners
Suicide 4pm

Why do we not talk about suicide much?

"Hey  how you doin' today?
"Actually quite suicidal thanks for asking."

The suicidal among us don't like to admit that we're suicidal because we're scared of getting locked up, scared of stigma and shame, scared of what people will say or think. You know why I was in the mental health ward at Katoomba this year? Twice? Suicidal. Most people in there are. And now here I sit drinking a fucking latte and my brother's dead because he killed himself early morning three weeks ago on Tuesday, 15th October 2013. He didn't want to get help. He didn't want medication. He didn't want to go in anywhere.

Cam told me the internet was a bad place for people who want to die. He said there were so many options for painless suicide. He talked to me frankly because that's how we always talked to each other. We were friends - really fucking good friends. <-- right then when I wrote that sentence? I got up from my chair howling, pacing the room in a circle with my hand on my hip like I was in labour. Death labour.

He was so fucking smart. And funny. And gorgeous. And talented. And lived with an ache inside him since his father killed himself 25 years ago. I keep thinking, well I'm still living Cam you prick. I've entered the anger stage, which gets briefly washed away by missing and grief and yearning for him so bad. The people I love, in order: My two boys, Dave, Cam.

Cam hired a large cylinder of nitrogen which he kept in his Sydney flat for about a month. Gas mask, long hose, clips. He was also going to work, doing Crossfit, seeing his best mates, and bought a nice car. The suicidal among us, scurrying, still living, still deciding.

A few days before he did it I finally got hold of his friends who'd see him often. I was so worried. I knew there was a very big chance he was going to do it. But the same could be said of me at varying times in my life, you know? All I think now is. "You knew you knew you knew."

I've talked him out of it before. Guess I couldn't this time. That last weekend I kept waking up thinking he was dead, so I'd text him about some dumb tv show and when he text me back I was relieved. Momentarily. He kept calling me "Eden" when he only ever called me "Eed."

I should have driven down to his flat and barged in and done something. Nobody can tell me any different at the moment. Maybe in time that will fade .... but in time, HE will fade. It hurts so much I can't stand it. It burns. The more you love someone, the more it burns.

I keep going through my head how he would have done it - laid the tarp down, then his pillow, turned the gas on, laid down, and put his gas mask on. Pure nitrogen tricks the body, because we all have nitrogen in us. So there's no fighting. It takes three seconds to render a person unconscious, one minute to kill. Apparently there's a chance that right before death the person feels an overwhelming sense of euphoria. I hope so. I hope he left earth with a big fat massive boner.

Cam murdered himself. Extinguished. Euthanized. Fucked off. He gave us all the finger with a 'seeya cunts I'm outta here.'

And I completely understand.

The first sentence of his suicide note -

"Eden .... well, this was not totally unexpected."

No. BECAUSE I KNEW.

I took a photo of the tarp and tank. I took a photo of him in the morgue. And I don't give a shit how inappropriate those things are. I look at them to try somehow get it in my head that he is gone.

I taught Cam how to write his name. And now with all these meetings with my legal people, dissolving and dividing Cams assets, I'm helping him erase it. Death is everywhere but we don't seem to talk about it.

I stand at my sons school and I am the recovering alcoholic drug addict with three dead dads, bipolar II, and my brother just killed himself hi nice to meet you.

It's beyond a joke. It's easy for me to slip into "nothing is real." (Because it's not.)


The very last photo of us together, taken on Fathers Day 2013. (I'm never celebrating Fathers Day again.) Me 41, wearing a black top and my convict scarf. Him 33,  in one of his good shirts and pants. Talked non-stop for almost five hours, just outside here on the back deck. He came up to say goodbye. I knew it then and I know it now.

Both smiling because we recognised a kindred.

(Comments switched off.)






Friday, 13 October 2017

YOUR DA SELLS AVON ... I'm In Scotland What Will I Do?

Flew to Scotland, panicked BAD in Glasgow airport toilet, got it together, stood in the rain and chose a hotel called "HOTEL Z" purely because of the "Zed's dead, baby" part of Pulp Fiction.


Feeling a bit heavy and stressed like this guy except he looks like he's sulking. I'm not sulking, I'm just Panic McStressorty from WTF did I do now.

Tell you what I didn't do: eat this.


... just held it towards me like an offal weiner.


Staying around the corner from this lion lying' around. Is not that golden sword the best tattoo idea EVER!?!

Seriously - a lot of me is homesick but I was sick of home which is why I came, had to get away, now I wish I was back, etc. I'll go to Edinburgh soon and find Nessie. Or a red-haired Scot Viking holy CRAP ... it's like Eminem in that video clip with a thousand clones and he's rapping:

".. and there's a million of us just like me
Who cuss like me
who just don't give a fuck like me
who dress like me
Walk, talk and act like me
it just might be the next best thing
But not quite me."

I walk, look, and carry myself like most Scots. Upright, same bone structure, same attitude. I belong here. My father was William James Barrie born here in Glasgow in the 30's. Apparently he was a paratrooper in the Red Berets .. trying to find out more info on that, any ideas?


Heh.


Literally an hour after I arrived I went to the library. Soothing. Hi Megan.

Today I'm forcing myself even more out of my comfort zone - yesterday I tried to get a red double-decker bus but I couldn't understand the guy so quickly walked away. Walked up to Central Station, looked at the train timetable, couldn't get on a train to save my life. Walked back forlorn - looked down. It's ok, Scottish Guardian Angels exist too.



Then I did what anybody in my position would do - got a manicure, obvs. Headed back to my hotel, cried, ate two juiciest nectarines ever while hunched over the garbage bin and the juice ran all the way down my face and I didn't wipe it off until I'd finished both.

It's the Viking way.



It's now 5.30am I WILL CONQUER TODAY IF IT KILLS ME. Which it will but it's cool because the sun keeps rising, regardless.



::

SPEAKING OF EMINEM - you all know how rap battles work yeah? Marshall Bruce Mathers III turns 45 on Tuesday oh and he's now the President of the United States.






"In the video, he’s looking directly into the camera—and into their eyes—as he raps.

“If you can't decide who you like more and you're split
On who you should stand beside, 
I'll do it for you with this: 
Fuck you.” 

This is Eminem wielding his privilege as a weapon, taking on the president in the culture war he’s currently waging against the progressive majority. His freestyle is remarkable in that it’s relatively unique among music’s white superstars. Fewer than you’d think have spoken out so publicly against the horrors of this administration, let alone called out their Trump-supporting fans on record. If we’re lucky, he’ll inspire other successful mainstream musicians to consider confronting their fans over what they believe. Either way, it was worth the effort." - Piece by Pitchfork

::

PS Ok time to go almost at the bridge. THEY KNOW WHAT A FLAT WHITE IS HERE!!
PPS Scotland is its own country. Just so you know. (I googled it.)





Wednesday, 4 October 2017

My head wants me dead. If your head wants you dead too, watch this, hang on, reach out, get through.

The most unadulterated raw thing I've ever out on the internet .. but I feel the people who need to see it and resonate it with it need to see it. I've reached out today, spoke to people, did my washing, coped.

But it's hard - life is very hard for most (all?) of us, whether we show it or not. I'm showing it. Pretty brutally honest but it is what it is. Please share it with people you think might need to see it. I'm here, waving not drowning. Sometimes it's the other way around but people who I let in get me through. A lot of the time I don't let people in until after WOAH YOU GUYS I JUST BEEN THROUGH HELL!

I started praying for strength today but realised - I've already been given it, I was born with it, in abundance. The world is so frightening it's heightening my senses. Especially now. How will our children do this life and will change for the better? I hope so, oh my guys.

But hey - hello. My name is Eden, if I can do this I swear to heavens you can to.

(Am also sharing this on my Edenland Facebook account if you care to share ... am turning my computer off for a while because I'm so very embarrassed. Too truthy ... is there such a thing? Yes.)


Monday, 11 September 2017

When A Man Dilutes A Woman.


                                                      





Thursday, 7 September 2017

How To Blog.


"The human race is the most stupid and unfair kind of race. A lot of the runners don't even get decent sneakers or clean drinking water. Some runners are born with a massive head start, every possible help along the way and still the referees seem to be on their side. It's not surprising a lot of people have given up competing altogether and gone to sit in the grandstand, eat junk and shout abuse. What the human race needs is a lot more streakers."

- Image and words by Banksy
- Post originally written by me in March 2011 - APPLICABLE AS EVER!

10) Go to your computer, write out a big, swishy, important blog post. The marketers and advertising networks and Important People will be happy. Then delete it. Now write what's in your heart and publish it. That will make you happy.

9) It's not a race. You may sense jostling of position ... (I'm looking at YOU, Australian blogging scene) ... a changing of the guard. Bloggers competing and crapping over other bloggers. Don't do that. Don't get involved in the politica of blogging. Stand to one side and smoke your imaginary cigar, then go home and write a post about that time you were twelve and tried to test God by setting traps in your bedroom. God failed, yet you still believe. Odd.

8) Make up your own words. I meant to write "politics" in the point above but like "politica" better. Make up your own scenery, your own language, your own pace, your own creative force. Your blog is a blank canvas. An empty page. A lump of clay. If there is a God who created mankind in His own image, then that makes you a creator too. (HINT: When you create things in life, a river trickles in your heart. If you keep doing it, it gushes into your secret underground trapdoor heart spring that you never even knew was there.)

7) If you want to build up your blog to get a lot of comments, or make money, or get famous ... that's fine. Do whatever the hell you want. It's a free world. (Is it?) Just remember that all good things take time. How connected are you to other bloggers? Do you really read their words and comment on their blogs because it resonates with you, or do you just want them to comment back? If you stop hiding and start write yourself into your blog, people will "see" you and be drawn to you. What are you so afraid of?

6) You don't owe anybody anything. Don't explain yourself ... if you haven't blogged for a while because Life Itself has torn you open and you're laying weeping on the ground - don't worry about backtracking and explaining every little thing. You don't have to! Just come to the page and open up a brand new post and start talking. About anything. People will follow wherever you lead them. It's like, you're the boss.

5) YOU'RE THE BOSS. You are in control. It's your blog, nobody elses. No rules, man.

4) At the beginning of every single blog post, picture inviting ten of your closest friends into your living room. And you say, "Now that I've gathered you all here ..." and start writing. Launch into a fantastic film you saw with your friend last night and it rained or a soliloquy on how you can't believe Japan has so many nuclear reactors or how mortified you were the first time you ever got a pedicure. Make it interesting. You must have interesting thoughts and ideas all the time. Notice them more. My sister Leigh said to me just this morning, "Eden, I often see things and think ... if I had a blog, I would take a picture of that and post it." How cool is that? She doesn't even have a blog but is seeing the world through blog-coloured glasses.

3) There will always be somebody doing it Better. Bigger. Stunning photography. Beautiful children. Getting swanky invitations to things. I get jealous of other bloggers .... mostly because I wish I were more normal and stable. (Sometimes I really wish I were a prolific, stunning Mormon blogger in Utah with a delightful etsy shop and children who I homeschool. Alas.) Somebody's got to be the unmedicated Australian lunatic who stalks Bono, writing strange things on the internet and yet somehow connecting with other people's Spirit while trying so hard to connect with her own. WHEW.

3b) Be happy for another bloggers success. If a blogger is "getting somewhere" ... it means they are raising awareness about all of us other bloggers. It's win-win. It's cool. Don't sweat it.

2) One day, you'll find that you have developed a Voice that you never knew you had. This is your very own Voice. Blogging with an open heart gave it to you. You begin to suspect that this Voice came from a deeper place - because seriously, blogging? Pfft.

You now have a duty of care to use your voice in the best possible way that you can. I can't tell you what that is, you must find that out for yourself. (HINT: Ever get the feeling that living this life with all these unanswered questions is like walking around with a treasure map but no idea where to dig? Dig inside yourself. It's the last place us humans ever look.)

1) Blog like a streaker, man. Blog like a streaker.


Thursday, 31 August 2017

Oh No Please Not This Again.

"I dreamt that one of your legs - I think it was your right - was burning in the firebox in my house and I was so excited calling everybody around to take a look. 

"You guys! My brothers leg is in here! Come and have a look my brothers leg is on fire!" 

Nobody wanted to look. 

I was the only one looking at your burning leg because it was the last time any incarnation of you would be in this world and at this point I'm grabbing at straws holding on to crumbs and letters and mugs and any fucking remnants of you I need to have and I am So. Sick. Of this. Shit. 

So I have decided .. I am done with the grieving now.  Nobody wants to watch a mans leg burn in a fire I mean I didn't want to see it either but I loved you so hard I had to look it was my duty because I was older than you and older sisters are supposed to care for the ones that come after.

I don't have to kill myself anymore. You did it for the both of us."



This was filmed in 2014, almost a year after my brother Cam left. I was sitting in the exact same place he sat with me for four hours on stupid fucking fathers day. My ex got pissed off so drove down to our (his) beach house while Cam and I talked and talked and talked and he left and the next time I saw him he was in the morgue all spongey. 

Today is 31st August 2017 - the last day of winter, I haven't noticed winter much because one of my best mates Dan died suddenly four months ago and the weather means nothing in Grieftown. Do you know Grieftown, probably. We all know it some much more than others. I know it like the back of my weathered winter hands. I've cried lately (just the once, Ede?) so I get out my handy-dandy Crybook to pinpoint the cry ahhh that's it - step right up soon to birthdays and death anniversaries and another year clocked up since I seen Cam and surely I'd be over this now? (No. And don't call me Shirley.) You never get over grieving it gets woven encompasses embedded into the fabric of who you are. All the things of who you are - you're more than your grief but sometimes you are your grief. Makes no sense to some, makes dollars to others.

This piece of here writing is a mash-up of stuff I've written before but it's still applicable. The death of somebody you love is always applicable. Tick. I miss my confidante. I can't be who I was with my brother to anybody else in the whole world. I miss how he made me feel. I miss who he could have been. Most of all I just miss who he was. I used to perform Camerons autopsy to find the cause of death SCALPEL over and over and over again. And over. And over. I don't even get paid for this shit. Grieving is all-encompassing. It is exhausting. And I am tired. So are my sons. We are hurting and we are tired from this. My brain will not stop its futile search and rescue operation.

"He should have gotten help he never got help why didn't he get help? The help probably wouldn't have done much anyway why couldn't he just have kept going? I kept going? Why do I keep going? There is no point in keeping going. Life is meaningless. He should have kept living anyway nothing means anything Cam where are you?"

And my Cam is nowhere to be found. My Cam is gone. I was standing very close to him when he departed so I've been hit pretty badly by the shrapnel. I was complicit in his death, see. He begged me on the phone, a few weeks before he died. I have talked him away from death so many times in our lives, so many times. I would tell him how suicidal I was too. And I was, am. I'm all suicidy and I can't wash it off. Please god higher power nature do not let my sons feel this. Other things .. but not this.

I feel like I aided and abetted his suicide, because I understood so well why he would want to go. He struggled with this whole "life" business, so hard. It's a hard life, I look at my children and I just think oh you guys, I'm so sorry I brought you into such a crappy world. They have no idea how hideous and intense and awful the world can make a person feel. No idea.

I have a feeling of a tidal wave forming, of a richer and more substantial dialogue on suicide. Which is great! But too late, for my brother. I see a video of beautifully groomed celebrities talking about how we must just hold on I want to reach through my screen and muss up their hair, swear at them a bit. Unless you have personal experience of suicide, you do not get to speak for me. I've been called "the suicide expert" by somebody online being nasty, who didn't mean it in a nice way. I happen to agree with you, motherfucker. I AM a suicide expert!

I told my therapist that the only, ONLY times I have felt any semblance of feeling ok about my brother not being in the world anymore is when I'm driving in my car next to some railway tracks and there's a coal train travelling in the same direction as me. Then it happened and I just exhaled for the first time since that awful Tuesday and for 0.04 of a second I was ok with my brothers death. It's happened a few times since, and I've felt that same teeny, tiny smidge of peace.

Once it happened with Max next to me in the car so I asked him to take a photo and he didn't even ask why. We are kindreds. 

There are trees that exist in the Scottish highlands that are balanced precariously on the edges of cliffs and all they need is a few drops, a few centimetres of water each year to survive. Gimme a smidgen of hope and I can make it last for weeks, months, years. I read recently that "strong storms make oak trees dig their roots in further." (Roots lol)

The thing that confuses me the most is that I am alive and my brother is dead and we were both so similar. He wrote in his suicide note to me: "Eden you're the strongest one out of all of us!"

I highly disagree, it's just - maybe I dug my roots in further? Cam told me in the last year of his life that he'd like to build his own house one day and now I think what an utter tragedy it is that he can never build his own house. He didn't know how to lay the foundations. He tried. But nobody taught him properly, he couldn't teach himself he was so arrogant, stubborn and now dead. Will never realise his potential.

My therapist and I could not quite work out why I feel a sliver of peace when I drive in the same direction as a coal train. Maybe it's because I used to read a big purple hardcover book by Richard Scarry called "Cars and Trucks and Things That Go" to my brother so often when he was little that the cover almost wore off. Everybody was always so BUSY, in that book. They had places to go, people to see. They had PURPOSE. And Goldbug would be hiding on every page and before I even turned the page my little brother, my little blonde-haired delightful guy who I now see in my children .... he'd sit there waiting with his finger pointed, ready to find Goldbug before I did.



I always let him find Goldbug first. I always gave him the prawns from my fried rice. I always listened to him, always tried to make him feel worthwhile and valued and important and beautiful and clever because it was all true. It was all true.

Buddy Wakefield says that the moon does not have to be full for us to love it. Cam, you did not have to be whole for us to love you! You didn't have to be anything other than who you were. You didn't like who you were. I wish you knew you were enough. I wish you kept going - for YOU, not for me or for anybody else. I wish you weren't in so much pain. I wish I wasn't in so much pain. I understand why you left. I hope that when you spoke to me on those last phone calls, my understanding and empathy of where you were and how you felt - bro I hope it gave you comfort. But god help me I wish you knew how much I didn't want you to go. I'm so sorry my Bam-Bam. I fucked up. I would've done it all differently I DEMAND a do-over you would still be alive and be able to grow and evolve and know that you are enough and worth enough, to stay.

He made me promise that if he did it I was to fight anyone who tried to hold a funeral for him and he did it so I made sure there was no funeral. But we all needed your funeral, brother. And it's too late for you to realise that this wasn't just about you. Shrapnel got a lot us over here.

I wished I'd done more, told you I needed you more, fixed you more but it's really really hard to fix somebody. Especially when you are actually legit a bit broken yourself.

"We cannot save people. We can only love them."




Thursday, 24 August 2017

Young Women - Stop Cutting Your Flaps Off!

Labia Minora have rights too!! Tell your girlfriends, daughters, nieces, sisters that we don't want a flapless society .. we need vulvas of a different variety.

(And if anyone mocks your vag tell them to go buy one of those new $10k sex dolls that are basically bendable corpses that don't talk because it's all about the holes amirite? Or a warm apple pie.)

Remember Barbie's mons pubis? That mound always so round? Neat. Nuh. Embrace our delicately different flower openings. Embrace vulva diversity.

Here's me a few years ago talking about my own vaginal fears which I have since gotten over in the past few years.

Embrace the flap.


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