Musical Milliner

May 26, 2014

Disordinata

  images (Revised 9/18/17)

The destruction of a long-term  relationship, leading to her hitting rock bottom.  She is sometimes delusional.  In her addled mind, she sometimes believes she’s lost all of her friends, most of whom were mutual friends of the partnership, her in-laws, her community.

This delusion is the result of wrong thinking. When she has a clear mind, she sees all the people who really care about her, and have been there all along, some since childhood. Once again , they are in the foreground of her life, reminding her of her value as a human being, as a friend, as a mother. Yes, she has lost some friends in the war. Friends who were there for a season, and have moved on. It’s not a bad thing. It just is.

 Back to the delusion, she knows it is all her fault. Of course it is. That is what he says.  His mental illness, his failures, all bad occurrences and recurrences would never be, but for  her decision to recind the contract.  She has ruined his life. Forever. That’s what his family takes as gospel. It’s a family of enablers.

But it’s not all her fault. Get real.

His mother prayed for the demise of his son’s marriage to this unsubmissive woman, this vegetarian, teetotling feminist who breastfed her children forever, and didn’t change her name at marriage. A woman who took off to one of the top summer opera  Young Artists Program for 12 weeks months after her wedding, and the following two summers, and weeks periodically for the rest of the year.

In other words, she was a bad wife according to the mother-in-law, and she fed that narrative to her son, the husband.

Among tha many gems uttered by his mother was the following: “There is nothing wrong with my children, it’s just the people they married.”

Do you get that?

Aren’t we, as women expected to  keep our marriages together? If they fail, is it not, by default, we who are to blame?

Do you get that?

 The meek little wifey model disappeared decades ago. It’s still practiced in fundementalist cultures all over the world, including the United States. Society has evolved and expanded, and some people aren’t able to stretch their imaginations and adapt. They refuse. The in-laws close ranks and believe whatever it that their son or brother, her husband, tells them. And it’s always the kids who suffer from the disconnection. You shun the mother, and wonder why the children will do anything to avoid spending time with those people. The children are loyal to their mother. They observed firsthand the abuse over the years, and how their father’s family did nothing to help.

The same woman once said, “I like my children. I just don’t like other people’s children.”

Does she get that ? Skilled dispensor of passive-agression, her mother-in-law?

Does she wonder why her grandchildren are not in touch? Does she understand they why don’t come around? Of course, that is their mother’s fault. Never mind the children are adults. That is their family culture. Submit, conform, or you can’t play with us.

What am I talking about? I am trying to reconcile how I went from someone with a good education, a prodigious talent, a career, self-respect. A singer with big competition wins A confident woman who collapsed into a beaten down, humiliated, & depressed woman in a violent marriage. How did that happen?  I need to check in, look into this hatbox which I shoved up on a high shelf, and check my compass.  I hate thinking about all of this. But I’m stuck again. What’s working? What’s static?

I am ready to write about these things now. My children are all adults. This is also their history.

(c)GoshGusMusic2014,2017

August 26, 2012

Inside the Fog

Filed under: music — by Musical Milliner @ 2:14 pm
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St. Augustine called it imtima mea, the ‘inward dwelling.” In the East, it is called the Maha Sunn, a void which separates the Created from the Uncreated worlds, where souls wander alone being cleansed, awaiting realization of a higher plane.

For the past several years, this is where I’ve lived. From time to time, there are days and weeks where the air is clear and sweet. There are hours of peace and contentment in the middle of a dark day. Mostly though, the fog is thick.

Sometimes I hear faint voices from the other side reminding me that there is another side. But my compass is broken, and I can’t find my way in the dark. I grasp what is left of the thin thread that keeps me attached to sanity. Is it strong enough? Will it break?

I am tired from standing in one place for so long. I feel the past, but not the future.

I remember being reminded by someone (who claimed to love me once) over and over that my problem was that I measured my life by my feelings, and lack of empirical evidence. The word “feeling” was used as a taunt.

(c)GoshGusPublishing(ascap) 2012

June 8, 2012

Pilgrim

Filed under: music — by Musical Milliner @ 8:20 pm
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Sometimes a song just smacks you in the gut. These are the lyrics from the title track from Eric Clapton’ s “Pilgrim.” Released March 10, 1998.

Simon Climie & Eric Clapton (c) ASCAP 1997.

And how do I choose and where do I draw the line
Between truth and necessary pain?
And how do I know and where do I get my belief
That things will be all right again?

What words do I use to try and explain
To those who’ve witnessed all my tears?
And what does it mean to know all these things
When love’s been wasted all these years?
When love’s been wasted all these years?

Standin’ in the shadows
With my heart right in my hand
Removed from all the people
Who could never understand

I was a pilgrim for your love
A pilgrim for your love
A pilgrim for your love
I was a pilgrim for your love

It’s like livin’ in a nightmare
Like lookin’ in the blackest hole
Like standin’ on the edge of nothing
Completly out of control

Now where have I been all these years
And how come I just couldn’t see?
Like a blind man walking ’round in darkness
I was a pilgrim for your love
I was a pilgrim for your love

Standin’ in the shadows
With my heart right in my hand
Removed from all the people
Who could never understand

Standin’ in the shadows
With my heart right in my hand
Removed from all the people
Who could never understand

I was a pilgrim for your love
Pilgrim for your love
I was a pilgrim for your love
A pilgrim for your love

I was a pilgrim for your love
A pilgrim for your love
I was a pilgrim
Pilgrim for your love

July 10, 2011

Tirannia

Filed under: music — by Musical Milliner @ 7:23 pm
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“…so he had power over me. That’s all tyranny is: it’s not in a personality; it’s in a set of circumstances. It’s being trapped with your enemy in a limited space- a country or a family- where the balance of power between you is unequal and the weaker one has no recourse
-Tessa Hadley, The New Yorker, 6/6/11.

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