How a Decision I’d Felt Fine About Suddenly Felt Wrong

WaLk the Goats

A lot of my childhood stuff was discarded over the years, but neither I nor mom ever discarded Sad Baby.  Plush in all parts except the face, she had a zippered-pouch in back cradling a music box.  The soft body, with lilting musical tones, was a comforting snuggle.

The plushie eventually made her way from the east coast to California, her cloth frayed and worn, the music box long dead and disposed of. I washed her face, aired her out and alternately displayed her on my bed or stuck her in the garage.

Years passed. Sad Baby had been in the garage a while when a desire to declutter arose. My decluttering urges loop around regularly. Each time, something that survived the last cycle, does not make the current cut.

One de-clutter tip I’d read was to take a picture of an object cared about but no longer wanted. It would keep the memory without having to store the thing.

I looked at Sad Baby. “It’s time,” I thought. “Time to let go of you.” Sad Baby had been mine for 55-years.

I took a picture, tucked her into my trick trash, and she was gone.

Sad Baby comfortably lived in my memory. I didn’t miss her. I was content with my decision.

Until…I wasn’t.

Continue reading “How a Decision I’d Felt Fine About Suddenly Felt Wrong”

Saying No to Re-living Old Pain

Pixabay: Hans. Free for commercial use; no attribution required.I recently wrote about a friend’s suicide, an act that took place 21-years ago.  As I read a poem I’d written after his death, I sensed a character shuffling about the edges of my consciousness.  The character was carrying a cloak; a cloak of sadness, anger, guilt and despair, brought forward from those tumultuous days.

I realized this character wanted me to wear those emotions again.

It was as if this character believed there were proper responses to a suicide—no matter how long ago it had occurred—and knew the cloak carried within it acceptable ones.  Here, wear this, she said. In case of suicide, feelings of sadness, anger, guilt and despair are allowed. I was tempted.

The thing is, I didn’t want to feel those things. I looked outside my window and the sun was shining; flowers were blooming.

Donning the cloak-of-past-emotions would not change the past.

It would, however, overshadow a beautiful present with emotions completely unrelated to the now.

I didn’t want to relive those old emotions.

I had a choice. I said no to the character and her cloak.


Photo source: Hans on Pixabay



A Friend’s Suicide Remembered

126_SuicidePainPoemOn Memorial Day weekend in 1998, an ex-boyfriend committed suicide. We had lived together for three years and had broken up less than a year earlier. Three weeks after his death, churned by emotions, I struggled to find ways to express the turmoil I felt.  I came across a poem I wrote back then; an attempt to describe the indescribable.

Reading it, I have memories of those days, of multiple characters in my head navigating their conflicting feelings triggered by his suicide: sadness, anger, guilt, despair. They were all part of the chaos.  At the time, I fully submerged myself in those feelings; their presence defined me. I didn’t see my emotions as the response of characters, but as me. I was the pain. I was the anger. I was the guilt.  There felt like no me beyond the emotions.

And yet, there was.  There always is, even when it doesn’t feel like it.

Continue reading “A Friend’s Suicide Remembered”

Personas & Voices: Wit and Whimsy


I love turning up lines or passages from other writers that capture the idea of different conversations taking place in their heads, conversations that reflect different facets of who they are.  J Blaide does that for me in her “Caffeine Crutch” post, excerpted below.


BLOG: Wit and Whimsy ~ “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.” Albert Einstein

Post:  “My Caffeine Crutch”

“…being groggy MAKES ME HUNGRY! This combo turns off my logical thinking switch and seductively whispersoh how delicious that Dew will taste! Go on, just one won’t hurt. Just one soda today and then back to water like we promised each other. It’ll be so satisfying!” (For the record, in my head this dialogue is voiced by Him from Power Puff Girls).”


Personas & Voices: Creative PTSD Gal


I love turning up lines or passages from other writers that reflect the idea of “voices” in our head, those characters who push back on us, find us wrong, plug the negative, and basically get in the way of us finding peace; peace with ourselves.


BLOG: A Creative PTSD Gal ~ “A Place Where I can be Creative and Understand Me”

Post:  “Another Challenge…Punishment?””

“I have a lot to learn. I could be better but that’s why I’m not listening to the permanent negative voice in my head. Not this time.”


Personas & Voices: Blank Paper

Header-HomeAn interesting way to write about “self.” I find it fascinating to read a description by this blogger that separates mind from body, as if two distinctly different things.  Given the sometimes contradictory ways my own inner personas can respond to something, I totally get this.



BLOG: Blank Paper ~ “Conversations with Myself”

Post:  “What Does it Mean to Love Others”

“I didn’t love myself, too busy being desperate to be loved. My mind and body did not care for each other we just so happened to be roommates. Roommates who never appreciated each other or saw each other as equals.” 


Personas & Voices: Of Other Bloggers


I love when I read other blogs and see language that captures the various ways we talk about ourselves, often using words that indicate different personas or characters. Here are three separate excerpts from three different bloggers that do just that.



BLOG: Confessions of an Irish Procrastinator  ~ “The musings of an Irish hopeful”

Post:  “Old Friends”

“Late last night, me and the Voice who lives in my head were just settling down for the night and who should rap the door but my good old pal Insomnia?!”

Continue reading “Personas & Voices: Of Other Bloggers”

Personas & Voices: The Average Aspirant

Header-HomeThis post is from The Average Aspirant, by a blogger who chose blogging to express, motivate and inspire herself and others. Or, as her tagline reads, it’s a blog about the “average life of an average person with aspirational goals.”

In this post she shares her thoughts about Blogging Awards such as the versatile blogger, mystery blogger and sunshine blogger awards.

There was one short sentence that illustrated, to me, how we often use language to recognize different thoughts or personas that we may not want or like.  Our language often creates distance from a thought, or reflects an awareness that we really can be of two minds about something.

“I wish I didn’t think like this, but I can’t help it.” ~The Average Aspirant


Personas & Voices: Self Love Living

Header-HomeThis blog post is from the Self Love Living blog, by a woman who hopes to inspire others to love themselves.

Her post, titled Rebirth-Repost is heavy, dealing with doubt and depression and darkness. If you link through, be prepared for that.

She captures the idea of characters and voices in our heads in the paragraph below. The language reflects an idea of separation, separation that’s part of an idea from meditation that we aren’t our thoughts and our feelings. I find it helps to realize how often we use this language, without fully realizing how powerful it can be to help us know those thoughts don’t make up our entire being.

“There’s this girl in my head that I’ve learned to tame over the couple of years since this incident, this bitch. I’d like to call her, she hurts me, belittles me, makes me feel lonely; to sum it all up: she makes me feel like shit…”

~Self Love Living



Personas & Voices: Life on the Skinny Branches

 Header-HomeHere’s a post by another blogger that reflects the idea of personas, voices, characters or “other” parts of our minds. It’s from Life on the Skinny Branches, a blog by a woman who is “a closeted introvert” attempting to “live life out loud.”

This post was titled “Perfectionista Blues.” It captures that tug-of-war that can occur between two characters with different ideas about things.

““Life will go on. It is not the end of the world,” she continued, though somewhere inside was a part that did indeed experience such an event as life and death, and no amount of coaxing was ever going to change that part of her mind.”  ~Life on the Skinny Branches



Personas & Voices: Pearls & Grit

 Header-HomeI’m linking to blogs where I catch language that captures the idea of “characters.” Sometimes it’s “personas.” Other times it’s “voices” in our heads. As I write about the idea of characters, I’m realizing how common this concept is in writings and conversations.

Today it’s from Pearls and Grit, a blog by a woman who loves “learning how to take personal struggles and crafting our best selves out of those struggles and changes.”

This post was titled, “Is Your Inner Voice Sabotaging Your Confidence?” It was in this segment where she writes about our “inner voice.”

“Which brings up the inner voice that we all have. Our inner voices all have personalities too. Most often, our inner voices are not very kind. In fact, they can be downright mean. That inner voice, allowed to run unchecked, can be one of our most toxic relationships. To make positive change towards true confidence, we must build kinder, healthier inner voices. “  ~Pearls and Grit



Personas & Voices: Clutter Busting

 Header-HomeAs I write about my internal characters that appear throughout a day, I’ve started noticing the frequency with which people write about “personas,” or the “voices” in their heads, or other language that connotes an idea similar to characters

It’s like when you learn a new word; suddenly it pops up in every article and book and billboard.

I decided to start linking to blogs where I catch such language being used, to illustrate how prevalent it is. Plus, it’s a great way to share connections with other bloggers.

Today it’s from Brooks Palmer’s blog. Brooks helps people move forward by helping them let go of what’s no longer serving them.  Using workshops, webinars and in-person training, Brooks helps folks unclutter their lives, literally and figuratively.

Brooks’ current post is about a passage in life many of us have faced or will face: a parent dying. This is the gentle and aware description Brooks shared of his dad:

“For most of his life he was strong-willed. He would get impatient if things weren’t a particular way. But now that persona is falling away.”  ~Brooks Palmer

Love, grace and peace to Brooks and his family.