violetcheetah: (Default)
I didn't know it at the time, but the uprooted violets marked the end of my cutting. At least, as far as I know: It's been 12 years, but I don't think I'll ever completely trust that I'm done. So yeah, I was cured by a major depressive episode. The events of this memoir — and my era of self-mutilation — lasted almost exactly 10 years.

I continued to see my shrink for another 11 years, until he closed down his practice a year ago. I was his last patient.

I'm still taking Prozac and Risperdal, and probably always will.

Sixteen years after our "breakup," Chris remains one of my closest friends.

I went back to visit my mother a couple of years ago, after not seeing her for nearly 14 years. When I got back, my shrink asked how it had gone, and I said, "Surprisingly well. She treated me like an equal. Like an adult."

"How did you feel about that?"

"It was weird. But nice. I mean, it's good when your parents respect you."

"That's an awfully self-centered view of the relationship."

I didn't even have to glance at him to see his sardonic smile. "Go onnnn."

"Well, you're assuming that your mother's respect of you has anything to do with you. With how deserving you are of respect. Which presumes that 14 years ago, 20 years ago, 30 years ago, you were not deserving of respect. That's a dangerous presumption."

On one hand, it kind of burst the warm, fuzzy bubble I'd blown around myself. I felt the edge of that anguishing, aching hunger that usually followed a visit with my mother, or even a phone call. On the other hand, though, it was deliciously subversive. And true. I've recently lost her respect again — incurred her muted wrath, even — and while it stung, it didn't crush me. Actually, I felt the opposite of crushed: expansive. Whole.

The violets returned in the spring, of course. They are weeds. It's not an epithet; it's a compliment. I've learned that violets and pansies are related; there's an Arlo and Janis comic where Janis is admiring her spring flowers and thinks to herself, "Pansies aren't." In addition to the violets, when I moved into the duplex, I transplanted grape hyacinths, snow glories, white daffodils, and bearded irises. When I moved out eight years ago, I dug up most of them to plant in my new yard, but it was summer, and I'm sure I missed some of the dormant bulbs; I also deliberately left some of the irises. Maybe this spring I'll finally go back and see what's growing.

violetcheetah: (Default)
Time to take a break from ruminating on my mother's letter to post another section of the memoir.

------ )

violetcheetah: (Default)
The following scene includes the worst day that I have a memory of. On the upside, that means it gets cheerier from here on out.
Read more... )
violetcheetah: (Default)
The following takes place right after "Boyfriend." 
Read more... )
violetcheetah: (Default)
I started this section in May, when I hadn't yet reached 40 years of life; first time in ages that I haven't finished something shorter than a screenplay within a week of starting it.

violetcheetah: (Default)
I took the sections of the memoir that I posted in November and December and February and put them up on Amazon Kindle as Subsequent Slices.  This is not the more recent piece about my father; that'll follow sometime soon, if I get the gumption to deal.
violetcheetah: (Default)
As you've seen, I've been working on the memoir again.  This has meant reading things I wrote in 1994-95, most of which I haven't opened since I wrote them, as I try to remember better what was going on at that point.  These are old Word docs, some from version 6, most saved as version 5.1 so I could print them at the university before I had a printer. That's so old that Word 2011 won't open it just by double-clicking; it's a frickin' blocked file type, so I have to use the open command in Word.  Still, the first 17 opened fine.

The 18th file opened, but it was blank.  The 19th file didn't open at all, just churned until I quit out of Word.  20's fine, 21, all the other ones I've tried.

So I emailed the attachments to myself, since I have a Google email account, which of course has Google Docs.  In the web interface, clicked "view" for number 18.  Sorry, it said, can't view it.  But after that: redirecting to plain html.  Five seconds later, there was the text, in the same frickin' font I used back then.  Copy-paste, voila.

I have my issues with Google, but today I declare them non-evil.  Granted, that's in comparison to Microsoft, so the bar's low, but still.
violetcheetah: (Default)
The Barnes and Noble Nook e-reader has caught up to Amazon's Kindle in allowing essentially self-publishing by individual authors.  I now have Slices: A Memoir-in-progress set up on both platforms.  If anyone is up for reading a real-life account of depression, self-mutilation, abuse survival, and general family dysfunction, feel free to click on the following links.

On the Barnes and Noble Nook

On the Amazon Kindle

All proceeds will go toward motivating me to finally finish the damned thing.


violetcheetah: (Default)
Violet Wilson

October 2016



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