You can call me Kyra. That’s not actually my name, but sometimes you just need anonymity.
I live in a small town in New England. My family don’t live within 500 miles of me, which is a very good thing.
I read and write poetry and fiction, I’m politically active, I knit obsessively, and I’ve recently started dabbling in mixed media art and bookbinding. I have strong opinions on nearly everything.
I’m also living with mental illness. I’m currently dealing with major depressive disorder, complex PTSD, and dissociative identity disorder. I’ve spent most of my adult life in hospitals and treatment centers, but now I’m mostly on my own. I’ve been without a therapist for about 6 months, since my last therapist fired me for being too crazy. I have a case manager through the Department of Mental Health who’s utterly useless. I live with a roommate who acts like she’s about 7, and most of the time I want to kill her.
I’m hard of hearing because I had chronic ear infections as a kid, had five ear surgeries before kindergarten, and got my left eardrum busted out six years ago while sparring. In 2004, I had gamma knife brain surgery for an arteriovenous malformation in my left frontal lobe. I have arthritis, particularly in my lower back, congenital hypermobility, MTHFR polymorphism, and recently diagnosed ulcerative colitis. Most recently, I’m dealing with severe fatigue and muscle weakness that restricts my mobility, and I have to use a cane most of the time. No one has yet figured out what’s going on there. I often write about the intersection of physical and mental illness.
The title of the blog comes from a poem by Louise Gluck.
My soul dried up.
Like a soul cast into fire, but not completely,
not to annihilation. Parched,
it continued. Brittle,
not from solitude but from mistrust,
the aftermath of violence.
Spirit, invited to leave the body,
to stand exposed a moment,
trembling, as before
your presentation to the divine–
spirit lured out of solitude
by the promise of grace,
how will you ever again believe
the love of another being?
My soul withered and shrank.
The body became for it too large a garment.
And when hope was returned to me
it was another hope entirely.
(from Vita Nova)