Are We There Yet?

Are We There Yet?
This is the sign that is over the front door of Aileen's and my house, our home, going OUT. Meaning that when someone leaves our house they are going into the ACTUAL Mental Ward.

I've always felt that way. When it is considered how much ugliness and killing and hatred there is in the world today, it actually makes perfect sense that this sign is over the door going out of the house.

Because that's where the real mental ward is.

Friday, November 8, 2013

The Pen Is Mightier Than the Sword

2:36 AM, EDT:

My darling Aileen always used to tell me that I must never diminish my writing, because she never did.  But more.  My darling Aileen and always believed that there were many people who were reading what I write and who are reading what I write, many people who are not able to respond.  She said there are people that are reading what I write and reading what she and I were writing together who are in situations where they absolutely don't have the ability to respond.  People that are living in rather desperate situations.  It gets easy to forget that.  At least until I look at the statistics of who's reading this Journal.  And then I know that my darling Aileen is right.  There are people in certain places in this world who are reading this Journal and they don't have the ability to respond.  People who are living in extremely difficult situations under rather incredible circumstances.  And in fact during our 18 years we encountered some of those people.

I don't share those stories in this Journal because I don't ever want to, in any way, to ever appear like I believe that I have any more significance or any greater significance than what I aspired to be which is always been to be simply a speck of dust.  The smallest grain of sand.  Because I have believed all my life that even in the smallest speck of dust the whole of God can be found.

So, I won't share any of the really unbelievable stories.  Stories of real people that Aileen and I knew some who died in very difficult situations, but whose lives were helped in part because of the writing and work Aileen and I did together.  It's amazing.  My darling Aileen and I actually knew people who were fighting for freedom and fighting for their lives, who lost those battles.  And yet they die so that others might live.  We actually knew have had friends in faraway places where in some cases, the e-mails we would get would be the very last ones they would write before they died or were killed.

When you are confronted as a writer with someone living under those circumstances and you learn how they are literally struggling for freedom and for their very lives.  The writing you do takes on new meaning.  Because you realize you're not just writing for people who are living in comfortable homes or going to school and to our young students or college students.  That you are not writing simply for people who are sitting in offices making good money but that you are writing for people some of whom are battling terminal illnesses and you have no hope.  No hope other than some of the writing that you are doing and that others are doing.  And that they are clinging to hope even though they know that the battle they are fighting is one that will never be won.  After writing you are doing is being read by people, some of home are actually on battlefields.  Not the ones that we hear about in the news but the other wants where quiet wars are being fought.  Wars against the human soul, where someone might be reading your writing on perhaps a cell phone or laptop computer somewhere in a far-off place where the sounds around them are not the sounds of the city with cars going by.  But are sounds of bombs going off with their friends dying.

And yet, if you have any kind of reasonable sanity it becomes hard for you to believe as a writer that the written word could ever have.  That importance.  And yet every single time that you actually find that your words do have that importance, again, if you have any degree of reasonable sanity and any kind of humility you are honored that the words you write have that much value to someone else.  And that the words that you are writing actually is possibly saving lives.

It's the other part of the equation.

I've always said that there are three reasons why I'm doing this Journal.  The first being of course because it is the one Journal and my darling Aileen wanted to do with me but never got the chance to do so.  It was the one Journal we talked about.  The one Journal we plan to to do together.  But then she got sick.  And my attention had to be focused on not doing this Journal.  But I'm trying to give her as much time as possible.  Because we both knew there was no saving her life.  We both knew that.  And we only talked about it.  Very singularly during those eight months.  We had to.  Daily there were circumstances that prevented us from being able to worry about how what we were doing was not ever going to save her life, but only give her more time.

So we didn't talk much during those eight months about doing this Journal because we didn't have the opportunity or the time to focus on anything like that.  Things were truly that desperate.  Which is why in those final days before she went into that last liver coma, so when she never came out of.  He made a point of making me promise that I would do this one Journal.  The one that she wanted us to be able to do together.  And I of course told her I would.  That I would continue writing.  That I would keep writing that I would continue to try and be what we had always tried to be.  A voice, however small or insignificant, for the greater good.

The name of this Journal is bitter harvest.  It's Aileen's name for this Journal.  She called this effort we were going to do together, because in her mind she felt that we had gained so much from loving each other.  And yet at the same time lost so much.

So I continue.  Hoping but also knowing that my darling Aileen was right.  That there are people reading this Journal who are not reading this Journal in schoolrooms or dormitories or in the comfort of their homes.  That there are people reading this Journal in the world who are facing circumstances and are in situations where in some cases they will not survive.

In this, in all of this, my darling Aileen, regardless of her being on the other side of the veil, is still very much alive.  Her soul.  At least part of it.  And her energy is in this Journal.  So while it might appear that I'm doing this writing alone in reality, that's not the case.  Because my darling Aileen is right by my side.  She is in this Journal.  Nobody lives with someone as I lived with my darling Aileen without being affected in every way by her energy and her life.  It's impossible.  Because she was more than that.

As I've told you before my darling Aileen was actually a domestic violence survivor.  Her first husband actually threw her across the entire living room one day.  The living room of this house.  He grabbed her by the throat picked her up and threw her the entire length of the living room where she hit her head on a coffee table.  As a result she had a scar right at her hairline across her forehead.  It was not very visible unless you look for it but it was there.  For this reason my darling Aileen didn't like anything that had flat edges she always liked things that were round because she was afraid of things would flat edges.  Because of that one incident.  So lots of the things that we bought together always had round edges.

So as I said, it becomes easy to diminish what I do thinking that only those who are reading my Journal are in places where life is easy or they are in school or an office because that's not the case.  During the 18 years we were together during the 18 years I was allowed to love her with everything I have inside of me.  Where we were shoulder to shoulder working every day to be a voice, however insignificant or small.  During those 18 years we knew a number of amazing people.  Some were friends of hers and some were friends of mine and some were friends to both of us.

People who did not survive.  Some who were killed.  A few who were killed because of the writing Aileen and I were doing together because they were reading our writing in situations facing circumstances that were that dangerous.  As hard as it is to believe.  I was reading some of those e-mails yesterday.  I was reading them to remind myself of the first principle of this Journal.  To be the Journal that Aileen, my darling Aileen wanted to do with me but never got the chance to do.  And the second principle.  To continue the human rights efforts, the human rights advocacy, that we both believed in and did shoulder to shoulder for 18 years.

People don't really understand at least not everyone does.  That in many cases the pen is mightier than the sword.  In many cases, and in many places in our world people are being killed for what they write, or what they think.  To diminish that would be an insult to their lives and what some of them are dying for.

So these two principles, the first principles of this Journal are the most important.  Because my darling Aileen believed that even though she would be on the other side of the veil that she would be doing this Journal with me.  She felt that way and always told me it would be so.  And during those eight months and especially those last few days when I would say that I didn't believe it was possible she would remind me that when any explanation for what is going on fails and what is going on seems impossible you then realize that it's not impossible.  It's just that you don't have an explanation.  So she would tell me what I would say to her that she's not going to be here.  Because she will be on the other side of the veil.  Her words were always the same.  She would say, you don't know that.

And she's right.  But that's my darling Aileen.  This all goes to one particular conversation we had just a few days before she died.  When I'm going over this rather long list of things she wants me to do after she dies.  And I said to her, so this is the way it's going to be, right?  You on the other side of the veil.  Continuing to give me lots of lists of things to do, right?

And her answer was remarkable.

She simply said, well, of course.  Of course I will.  Would you expect any less?

At the time.  I laughed and made jokes about that remark.  But as time went on it was not very easy to make jokes about it anymore because she was right.  Somehow or someway my darling Aileen is on the other side of the veil and she's giving me those lists of things to do.  And I am so honored and grateful for that.  Because it represents the third principle of this Journal.  It's actually just as important as the first two principles.  But it is only a principle of this Journal by the unbelievable fact that from the other side of the veil my darling Aileen is still giving me those lists of things to do.  For those who say that I'm crazy or I'm stupid or deluded.  That's fine.  They can say anything they want.  Because I know better.  I know when I'm deluded and I know when I'm not.  My darling Aileen is giving me lists from the other side of the veil.

And as I said because of that singular absolute miraculous thing.  Because of that, the third principle of this Journal becomes a real and alive.  The third principle being that this Journal is my way of baring my soul to the creator.  To God.  My way of opening my heart and my soul to God, the creator it whatever time I have left in this world.  And to do so based upon the two first principles of this Journal so that the Journal then becomes a triad.  An unbreakable set of three principles in perfect harmony and in perfect balance.

Not a triad that is famous for makes lots of money.  But a triad of three principles based upon the love and the life we shared and the life we will share when I also go to the other side of the veil.  When I finally go home.

Which is why this Journal doesn't just deal with human rights issues and violations but that this Journal also deals with my own inner torment and inner struggles as I worked as hard as I can to always have my soul open before God.  And it never do so from one religion or another or one religious principle or another.  But to always do so simply is that which God did make.  As simply one of the lives that that God put here into the world.  Nothing fancy, nothing famous nothing meant to make money off of.  Just my way of being as honest as I can with myself before God in whatever many years.  I may have left.  And to do so on the basis of the first two principles knowing that as I do this I am not doing it alone.  Because my darling Aileen though she is on the other side of the veil is right by my side.

Which is why I say that I oftentimes feel like I'm working as fast as I can and that even though I'm working as fast as I can.  I'm still not able to reach some in time.  Because their dying every minute.  And no matter how many words I right or what I might say, I am never able to reach them in time, because they're dead.  They haven't survived.  And many are dying in very difficult situations, facing unbelievable circumstances that many of us only read about.  And some that never make the news at all.

And in that my darling Aileen is always correct.  There are many who are reading this Journal who don't have the ability to respond because they can't.  And when you understand that you become incredibly humble because it is a huge honor to be allowed to even feel that kind of awareness to have that opportunity to be a voice, however small or insignificant where in some cases the words you write might actually help someone else to find their own way home in whatever time they have left.

It's an honor that makes you aware of how small and insignificant you are in the world, because no matter how hard you might try the matter what you might write the best you can do is to try and give some of these people who are in those.  Desperate situations.  At least a little hope.  And again unless you just basically dead inside of yourself.  You become aware that this opportunity is more than you just writing words.  It is a gift from God.  To be allowed to have that awareness where you are using all of your talents and everything you know to simply try and save someone else's life.

In our world today, we write lots of thing.  It's.  We write lots of angry things.  We write articles of hate and articles of anger where we fight with each other and argue about how we think and what we feel.  And then there are other types of writing in the world where someone is writing words and where they are writing those words all around them.  People are dying or being killed.

So the three principles of this Journal are much more than simply three concepts.  So much more.  And these three principles totally and completely affirm that my darling Aileen from the other side of the veil is still here.  She is in the world.  Because she is in this writing.  She is by my side.  Regardless of what anyone might think she is by my side.  And we are doing this one Journal.  She wanted to do, together.  Which is why I say that if I never turned my back on her which I did not.  I will never turn my back on any of you.  I will never step away.  I will always give you every ounce of my best efforts just like I did for my darling Aileen.  And just like I'm doing now.  Not solely on the basis that there are some whose lives may in fact depend on it.  But also on the basis of any good that may come from what I write.

So the three principles are exactly what I said.  They are a triad.  An unbreakable triad before God and with God and with my darling Aileen.  A triad of three principles before God that have nothing to do with any religion in this world, but have everything to do with that energy that we all call by some anything this that has made all that there is.

In this is I've always said and as I've said in this Journal article.  The pen is mightier than the sword.  Do not believe that is to not understand.

Which is why maintaining this house, which is one of the promises I made to my darling Aileen before she died.  It is part of that triad.  It doesn't seem like the case, or that it would be so, but it is.  Because maintaining this house is in itself my way of making my soul.  Bayer before God.  Just as I do with the third principle of this Journal.  It's what my darling Aileen wanted.  It's what she hoped for.  And for that.  It's what she you will get.  My best efforts all of my strengths all of my energy for the rest of my life dedicated to those promises.  And these principles.

Because there are promises you make in life.  We make them every day.  And many of them are trivial and seem not very important, and they end up being that way.  And then there are others.  There are other promises we make, where we know full well that the promises we are making our of absolute importance.  That they are promises we can never break.  Because if we do we deny our own souls we deny ourselves.  So we don't break those promises no matter what.  Just as I will never break these I made to my darling Aileen, no matter what.  Of all the promises I ever made in my life.  These are the ones that come first and that I will never break.  And in that those three principles then become absolutely more than just important they become imperatives.  Because these three promises become the very breath of my darling Aileen here in the world.  Regardless of what anyone might say or think.  And to be sure in my own neighborhood.  There are people who look at me as peculiar some look at me with anger or hatred because no one in the world is loved by every single soul in the world all of us have lives like that.  Where we know someone or some people who don't like us or take exception to what we do.  That's life.

The true test is whether or not you keep going in spite of that.  And because I made those promises to my darling Aileen.  I do.

I know it sounds incredible.  Like it's hard to believe.  But for those who feel that way.  All I can say is you didn't know her the way I did, but you are learning you are getting to know her in so many ways by what I write and how she comes through me in my writing in this journal.  You are getting to know her courage, her bravery, Karen dying love for this world.  And that in itself is yet another miracle.  A miracle in a world that no longer believes in miracles.  And yet this perfect triad that makes up this Journal is one of those miracles.

So when I say that what I'm out walking and I never walk by anyone without saying hello and wishing them well, regardless of who or what type of person they may be.  That's true.  Because that was one of the most significant thing is that I learned from watching my darling Aileen die.  How temporary life is.  How in a fleeting second or a fleeting moment the life one might have is suddenly irrevocably changed, where they either don't have very much time left in their life or they are in fact taking the final steps of their life.

And so you realize that you don't ever really want to walk by anyone without introducing yourself and saying hello and asking about them and their life and how they are dealing and then wishing them well because you don't want to miss an opportunity of doing that, knowing in your heart that there exists the possibility not only that you might not ever see them again, or that in fact the hand of God or life might move in such a way whereby they might die.  And so if you didn't stop and say hello and introduce yourself to them and wish them well and they died.  And yet you walk by them and you then would know that they had died.  But you never said anything to them, you will have had that opportunity presented to you and never taken advantage of it.  Never reached out your hand to say hello.  And it's not done on the basis of your own ego.  It's done on the basis of knowing that in a world filled with such anger and hatred and all is the fighting that we can muster with lots of writing taking on all kinds of anger and hostility that in such a world having the opportunity to do something else to simply say hello to a stranger and to wish them well becomes incredibly more significant than paying attention to all the anger and all the hatred.

And on that account.  I'm sure that there are those who know me, where I live, who called me stupid or who think that I am a full and probably say lots of other things, but I don't care.  Because I am not proselytizing.  I simply walk up introduce myself and say hello.  And then I asked how they are.  I ask about their families and I always wish them well because I don't ever want to have that opportunity presented to me and to not take upon myself to experience and take advantage of that opportunity to do some kind of good however small or insignificant for someone else knowing that they might in fact just by the hand of God or fate.  Maybe not be there the next time I walk by.

It's the most significant thing I learned from watching my darling Aileen die.  Which is why the triad this triad of this Journal is so greatly important to and a part of the promises I have made to my darling Aileen.  Because keeping those promises again has nothing to do with my own ego.  But everything to do with the very process of life.  The process of the creator in the world, whether we call that creator God or gods or whether we call that creator energy or anything else.  It does not matter.  Because everything I do now is upon this triad of this Journal and those promises knowing that as I keep going.  My darling Aileen is in the world in so many different ways.

So, doing the Journal becomes a way of celebrating that process and celebrating her and celebrating life itself.  Just like keeping all of the promises I do for her become the same.  Which is why I have always said.  My darling Aileen died for this house and I will do the same.

And if that makes me stupid or if it makes me what ever anyone else might say that might be negative and I am glad of that I am proud of that.  And those negative statements and remarks then become badges to me.  Because I am happy to be whatever anyone else might say because in my heart I know what I really am.  I am what God has made in this world.  Like everything else.  Just one tiny very insignificant soul in the world.  Just a speck of dust.  A speck of dust trying to find my way home.  Because even in a speck of dust the whole of God can be found.  And that has nothing to do with religion.  However it might sound.  Because it does not.  It has everything to do with the energy in every single thing that exists in this world, whether it is animal or plant or mineral doesn't matter because in the smallest particle of every single thing in this world.  The whole of God or the whole of all energy is found.

And I am no less than any of that.

So I will press on.  Not measuring myself by the quantity of what I do, but always measuring myself by the quality of what I do.  Because I will not be measured by God for the quantity of what I have done it is much as I will be measured by the quality of what I have done.  Did I take the time.  Did I slow down and take the time to do what I was doing with the highest degree of quality to make it the best that I can possibly make it to be for my fellow human beings.  And for God.  And of course from my darling Aileen.  Because in those eight months those last eight months.  She was alive it was not the quantity of what we did that gave her that extra time it was the quality of what we did.  Working as hard as we could to make everything we did be the very best of what we could to.  Knowing in our hearts that she was not going to survive.  So I became determined to make sure she was not going to survive that every single second.  She was going to get the absolute best of my effort in everything I did that no matter what she would get the absolute best of what I could to if I could not save her I would stand by her side.  I would carry her in my arms.  I would do anything it would take to give her the best of everything I could be.

Which is why I will do no less for you.

Which is why I can do no less for anyone I might eat on the street.  Which is why I don't like taking vehicles anymore.  I don't like getting on the bus I will not do that.  I will walk no matter what I will walk because then I go slowly.  I don't rush and I don't miss anything.  I take the time to look at every single thing wherever I am to notice every detail and to notice every single soul.  When I say hello.  Of course there are some who don't respond but those are few.  Because when I say hello.  Most people do respond because in most cases they are so surprised that anyone is actually taking the time to even say hello.

It becomes a very best that I can do the best of what I have inside of me to do that.  To say hello to wish them well to ask them about their lives and their families and to hope that they are happy and to wish them all of my best to tell them that they will be in my prayers and my thoughts always to learn about their lives and what they are going through.  To be interested in them.  And like I did for my darling Aileen.  It is the best of what I can do.  It's the best of what is inside of me because that's what I did for my darling Aileen.  We were not concerned with quantity.  It was all about quality which is why I just said that if I did not step away from my darling Aileen.  I will not step away from any of you.  Nor will I step away from being my brother and sister's keeper.  For as long as I live I will not do that because that is actually part of all that Aileen and I were.

And so in about 30 min. my day will be starting.  It's trash day.  So in about 30 min. I will take my trash out to the tree lawn.  Then I will do my morning exercises and make sure that the cats are properly fed.  Then I will clean myself up for the day.  And then I will press on.  Sometimes fast, sometimes slow.  But ever onward.  And at any given moment.  If I'm not able to give you the best of what I can do.  I will step back and either meditate or take a short nap.  So that every single thing I do is the very best of what I have inside of me.  Because that's what I did for my darling Aileen and as I said I will do no less for any of you.  It doesn't matter whether I know you are not.  I will never give you anything except the very best of what I have inside of me, no matter what.

As I said.  When I got out of the hospital in 1969.  That's when I first began to believe that all I ever wanted to be was nothing more than a speck of dust.  Watching the sacred nine die during that year convinced me that being big and loud and huge was not anywhere near as important as simply doing the best you could possibly be at being yourself to never really aspired to be more than but a speck of dust or a grain of sand.  Knowing that in all of that, however small or tiny the whole of all life, the whole of God is found.

Which is why I now say thank you.  I thank all of you for giving me this opportunity and from my darling Aileen and the powers of life and God for giving me this opportunity to be the very best that I can possibly be in this Journal based upon three principles a triad of hope and faith to be the very best I can possibly be to continue doing so.  Just the way I did for my darling Aileen.  Thank you all so much.

And though I failed to save my darling Aileen's life in reality I did not feel her because I never stepped away from her side.  I never stepped back.  And I will do the same for all of you, no matter what.

I'll write later.

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