Born Crazy: A Video Poem

You’re crazy.”

How often have you heard this phrase thrown around, either flippantly, in jest or to victim blame someone who has overcome or is recovering from abuse?

I heard this often as a post-cult teenager and well into my adult years. While I was actually dealing with the behavioral aftermath of being an extremely abused child, instead of receiving support, caring and nurturing I was told that I was crazy. When a child is told enough times that they’re mind is insane, we begin to believe it.

This poetry piece is from my spoken word album, Dusted Shelves, which is available on Amazon in paperback and c.d. Written in 2013, it is a representation of a life by which I was conditioned to believe that I was crazy.

Some abuse survivor work is considered to be dark and oddly psychotic. This piece would fall under that theme.

**Trigger Warning for those who are sensitive to these themes**

Born Crazy

Save It

Save the idle banter
And the petty, senseless chatter
For the next innocent victims
Of your self created disaster.

Save the sad, sad stories
And the sudden change of tune
For the tide that brings the drowning
When it all decapitates you.

Save it for the others
Who love to gasp and smother
In the drama and the strife
Of petty, purposeless lives.

Save it for the nights
When you regret not taking flight
When the chains were off
And you were running
Into freedom and your light.

Save it for the journey
That belongs to only you
For what you say about me
Is most revealing of you.

Save it for the lying game
You use to hide the shame
The lack of accountability,
The excuses and the blame.

Save it for the strength you’ll need
To recover from the change,
The chains, the regrets,
The moments missed;
They never go away.

Save it all to leave in the dirt
When the pain overrides the hurt
And all the disappointment
Is continually affirmed.

Save it like its a precious,
Priceless, rarest gem.
Save it for the arrival
When you have to begin again.

©venniekocsis.com

Because Humans Represent The Possibility Of Loss

When I was a little girl of one and two years old, I existed inside of a perspective attached to my sister’s hip. She is four years older than me. It seems I was always either hiding behind her hip or holding onto a part of her belt loop or dress so I could feel safety. Staying beside her, I had a constant guide who would always know what to do next. My father was gone a lot because he worked as a military contractor. My mother was busy giving over her time being slowly love bombed into a destructive cult.

So, my older sister was my anchor, and my older brother was our body guard. My sister took on a mothering role, and my brother, a protector role, available to whip some ass if any other kids in the poorer neighborhood we moved into, messed with us.

Then, in the blink of an eye, our lives were turned upside down, and we were all ripped from each other when my mother decided to take us to one of the most brutal of all the compounds owned by Sam Fife’s Move of God cult. As a three year old child, I went from the safety of my sister’s love and my brother’s protection to never seeing my brother, and not being allowed to speak to my sister or my mother. Overnight I went from safety, to terror. abuse, isolation and fear.

I could only catch sight of my sister when we were out working in the fields. Or when we were in the dining room, we could have telepathic conversations through sneaking eye contact with each other. She holds the memories of my screams when I was beaten. She saved my life once, putting herself in danger to stop a beating where I had passed out and dissociated when I was somewhere around five years old. My sister and I have a connective strand of trauma survival that is unique only to us. There is a deep wound of abandonment and isolation that these experiences created inside of me.

They had a deeper effect on me because I could not process what was happening to me. I was only three, and at seven and nine, my sister and brother could only see me being abused, see each other being abused and helplessly stand by. It would remain this way for years.

When my family’s love is ripped from me on any level, I am deeply triggered to the emotions of that childhood trauma. When I am left by the way side by a family member, not spoken to or responded to, I feel disregarded and reduced to ashes. I am three again, feeling confused, terrified and abandoned, ripped from the only love I truly trust. I am left inside of the unknown. I trust too little or I trust too much. This creates an end result of me not trusting at all.

When these types of situations arise, it does assist me in moving through them when I am able to connect the emotion I am experiencing to the trauma that the situation is triggering. When I can understand that I’m weeping uncontrollably because I feel the pain of the disregard, in the least I can bring about resolve for myself.

I feel the strong emotional trigger of the isolation and abandonment. The tears I flow are no different than a wound which must seep in order to heal. It’s squeezing the infection out. It is me learning to deal with loss, the exhaustion of it repeating itself and somehow figuring out how to maintain acceptance of it.

Recognizing my triggers can be difficult. I have to piece these fragments together, sift through these thoughts and open my mind to understanding their impact on me. I am fragile, yet I have to continue living in spite of the loss. It takes time to figure this out.

Every time I experience it, I ask myself if I have the strength to deal with loss anymore. Each time I am unsure. I don’t know if I can. Each time, I do regain my strength, yet I feel just a bit more tired inside.

Life moves on and each time I am used or feel abandoned, it leaves pieces of my love ripped from me. It changes me. It molds me differently. I become more silent inside of myself, where acceptance leaves me in a state of constant observation and a feeling of not really wanting to connect with most things human, outside of children who havent learned to be cruel yet.

It makes me feel distant and shut down into myself, to continue accepting this solitary path, away from the victim blaming and the sick minds who can attack us with our own traumas, to be the silent writer in the attic, seen occasionally carrying groceries; isolated from the rest of humanity because humans represent the possibility of loss, and loss has stripped me to bone.

A List and a No Show

I make notes before I go to therapy sessions. Mainly because my thoughts become jumbled, I begin to go all over the place, switching and moving through moments, talking so fast my therapist’s head looks like a cat following a laser light.

So if I have a guideline for what I want to discuss I can refer to it, allowing me to remember what we want to talk about. It allows me to keep my/our thoughts organized or I will spiral off on tangents then before I know it, our time is over and Dammit! I didn’t get to discuss everything on the list!

The last few weeks have been personally heavy on many different levels. New Memories emerged. Catastrophic Dreams. An emotionally hurtful situation I experienced that I wanted to talk through with her. One thing I adore about her is that she has an incredibly analytical mind, and she doesn’t bullshit me. I can show her facts and she’ll tell it like it tee eye is, even if I don’t come out the winner. She always has the most amazing feedback and suggestions. She’s a great communicator. The list goes on of why she’s the bee’s knees.

My drive to therapy isn’t short, first of all, and since I have an intense OCD about lateness (I fucking hate it) I’m already watching the time. Add on that each trip in and of itself takes a lot of will power to even get my ass into the car and go.

I really do not like sitting in waiting rooms in general, much less with TV’s blasting medical advice and humans’ energy sitting all around me. It’s not the same as the average arena with the general population. No. I am an Empath sitting in a space filled with people in all levels of emotional pain.

I can feel all of it, see all of it, and I wear headphones to both block it and keep anyone from talking to me. I also wait in my car until right before my appointment so by the time I check in, I’m headed straight to her office.

This week I really needed to just dump it all out on her. I was really looking forward to my session, my list was ready and I’d even brought some factual evidence from a situation for her to look through and give me feedback on how to handle it, etc.

I finally get there, check in, and the receptionist says, “Oh, didn’t they call you? She went home sick today.”

Fuck… No… They didn’t call me. FUCK! What the FUCK! I drove all the way out here, did my usual emotional prepping, and I have a list! A GOTTAMN LIST that needs to be discussed!

“No.” I replied. “No phone call.”

Then the receptionist did something that just almost set me off due to my already flustered state of being. Luckily, I have a good handle on critically thinking and assessing so in the aftermath I just accepted that she probably didn’t know any better.

“Well, [enter another therapist’s name here] is available. Would you like to see her?”

Me: “Does she know anything about my background?”

Receptionist silence.

Me: “Exactly. It would take the whole hour and a half explaining my history to Ms. Temporary Therapist Who Knows Nothing About Me, and then I’d never even get to my list.”

Receptionist stare. Mind read.

“Damn. This chick brings a list.”

Me: “Touché.”

Receptionist: “I’m really sorry no one called you.”

Me, rubbing the index card upon which I write my list, softly between my left thumb and forefinger much like the silk lining of the blanket I had as a baby. Self soothing comes in many forms.

“It’s cool. Let’s re-schedule.” I say, softening inside.

Deep breaths. Being in the moment. Letting it all pass. No emotional catastrophes today.

But it rather feels like being stood up on a date, like getting all gussied up and gorgeous just to get a phone call ten minutes before, canceling or worst yet, sitting at the restaurant waiting on a no show.

And I’m just… Left with this damn list until next time.

the beat goes on.