Monday, April 16, 2018

She In There

This is what Sophie looks like when I take away even the tiniest bit of Onfi, the benzo that we've been trying to wean her from for four years. I'm still weaning the damn drug, a tiny, tiny bit at a time. I tinker each time, as well, with the various cannabis medicine products, and good things happen. Every day is different, though, and we continue to live this life as an experiment in progress.

Like my dear Dr. Jin said, so many years ago, She in there, she know.

I am sorry that I've left you readers high and dry, an occasional post once or twice a week. I haven't visited blogs or left comments, have been deleting newspapers and articles from my Inbox and have just generally avoided -- well -- everything. I've been down and blue and struggling a bit with I don't know what, but I feel it lifting a bit and hope that I will soon be back in writing daily order. I'm engaged in the world as I've always been, but man oh man every single day we wake up to that vile emperor with no clothes and his persistent presidency. It's a freak show and a clusterfuck, and like we say in the writing biz, you just can't make that shit up. I'm not underestimating its effect on my psyche -- nor should you if you're of the same persuasion. If it doesn't bother you or you're one of his supporters, well, I'd bless your heart if I felt any respect for you at all. May it all be over soon and not because some bomb is dropped on us for being such idiots. The thing is, though, that what's rent is rent, right? The veil has been pulled back. The core is rotten, isn't it? So much work to do and most of it is about coming to terms with our privilege and our whiteness.

I've been reading a lot lately -- have been able to dig in deep and get through to the end of novels and bask there glad and filled up. I recommend Lisa Halliday's Asymmetry, Jesmyn Ward's Sing, Unburied, Sing, Terese Mailhot's Heartberries: A Memoir, Claire Dederer's Love and Trouble and An American Marriage by Tayari Jones. I had ordered a book from the library that finally came in, so many months after the request that I forgot where I'd read about it, but I really liked it -- a novel called Elbowing the Seducer by T. Gertler.

Oh, and then there's Fire Sermon by Jaime Quattro. I'm obsessed with her and her writing, her brain and mine.

What else?

I've tried to wander into museums, too --saw a beautiful David Hockney show at LACMA over the weekend and an amazing exhibit that included a multi-media show by Kara Walker at the Hammer last week. I'm so grateful for the sustenance of art -- of words and painting wrought, especially, from great struggle and suffering. Our lives are enriched even as our own troubles recede and perspectives enlarge.


  1. Heartberries: yes. Love and Trouble: yes. She is in there: YES. Oh fucking yes, the are in there. We know this on a cellular level, Elizabeth. They are in there. Sophie. Nick. All of them. We see them. We know.Hey, maybe they se each other.

  2. I love the thought of you hunkering down, getting sustenance from art. And your girl, she's so beautiful.

  3. I'm at the other end of the spectrum, adding drugs to Katie. She was started on valproic acid and it actually helped. Psychiatry is a lot like neurology I think, "Here, try this." But this time it worked and I am thankful.

    Sophie always looks so beautiful but even more so when the light in her eyes shines.

  4. Sophie is there and she looks to be saying "thank you"!!


  5. Well, you may not have been as engaged as usual in the world of blogging, but you've certainly been engaged culturally -- and props to you for that! I haven't read any of those books you mentioned, though I recognize them from the library and maybe (ha!) I'll eventually get to them. Sofi looks so happy and peaceful in that photo!

    1. Sophie, I mean. (There's a girl here at school named Sofi and I was just e-mailing her parents about her overdue books, so I have that spelling on the brain!)

  6. And her eyes will sustain you...
    What glory in those eyes, Elizabeth.
    Jessie and I have been joking about the phrase "you do you" which cracks us up but yeah, woman, you do YOU! And it sounds like what you need right now is space from the race to what appears to be the complete crumbling of certain aspects of our society and a more complete immersion in the beauty of art and literature.
    You're smart. You are loved. So is Sophie.

  7. I'm glad you are on the way back up. I am still ... underneath it all somewhere.

  8. What a beautiful portrait of Sophie! I love how deeply she is looking into you, loving you. It is wonderful to catch up with you here, and thank you for that fantastic list of recommendations. I have not been reading novels recently, only nonfiction, and I think perhaps it might be time to embrace fiction again. And those David Hockney paintings make me want to break out an easel. So much inspiration in this post.

  9. I am slowly digesting Heartberries (thank you for the gift of it, btw) because I can't bear for it to end. I love that I've recently read each and every one of the books you talked about as well and I wish we could grab a cup of tea and sit and chat about them for days. If you're examining your whiteness further, I'd also suggest Patrice Khan-Cullers' "When They Call You a Terrorist" and Michael Bennett's "Things that Make White People Uncomfortable." It really is a gift to be given a view in to this world I never would have experienced. As for Sophie, I love that shot of her and I hope that the days are easier and easier for both of you. Sending all my love <3

  10. Sophie's countenance with less Onfi is clearly more Present and relaxed, it's a stunning image of her Beauty. I'm glad you have immersed yourself in what you Love in order to engage more fully again and not feel so burdened emotionally, which is never a comfortable way of Being. As a Family of diversely blended ancestry we have had the mixed bag of experiences of privilege along with the struggles of racial and cultural bias... I think it has given us a better point of reference of all sides, which I am grateful for. Once Society comes to terms with the fact there is only one Race, the Human Race, I think it would be a much more Loving World.

  11. I wish you were with me yesterday when our neurologist got rude with me because I refused Onfi again and then basically said she can't help us if we aren't willing to try it. Oh and she said none of her patients have every had issues with weaning it....The company must pay these docs really well because they never push any of the drugs as hard as that one. Sorry for how you're feeling. I think I'm finally starting to come out of feeling the same way.

  12. Big hugs and I have been feeling exactly as you have re: the clusterfuck and Sean Hannity was like the plot twist that made it all jump the shark (amongst others).

  13. Those eyes of your girl's. Simply stunning. Indeed, she in there.

    I'm grateful you made time to comment on my Plan F post, and I will definitely be reaching out via cannabis. Thank you. Completely understand the need to withdraw for a time -- I'm feeling that need, too, because it is all too much, too much of the time. Books and art -- they're the salve this world needs.

  14. Never before can I remember being so affected by political forces. I find myself angry,resentful, incredulous, depressed, sad, hopeless, just so many swirling negative emotions. How do I rise above this and find my strength again? What had been particularly heart breaking is seeing all the ugliness and feeling it. NONE of it is hidden anymore and much of it is worn with can almost be said to be pride. I do think we will rise above this but it's going to be a slow rise and there will be a LOT of damage in it's wake.

  15. Her eyes! She is looking right at us.

  16. Sophie looks so alert, bright eyed and happy. It's clear that your Dr. was spot on: "She in there. She know." Wishing Sophie continued improvement as you proceed with the benzo weaning. (And I love those David Hockney portraits).



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