Thursday, February 11, 2010


(A public attempt to express my abiding love and appreciation.)


My Lady-Love,

My Delicate Flower,

My Warrior Queen:

Dark Forces and Worldly Foes

Seem devout in their

Efforts to overwhelm us.

I know the battles

Appear unending and

Our times together are too short.

Yet, our love, though bruised,

Stays strong.


Soon or

In Time,

Or in Valhalla,

Or in heaven

There is an English meadow

Or a warm island beach

Where we can lie down

And hold each other in Peace

And Know that our best was done.

These words may make you cry.

My tears fall as I write.

But, to the End

Please know

That I believe in Us.

All My Love Forever,

Your Bear

Saturday, January 23, 2010


january dawn
coyote calls
in falling snow


Thanks to Danielle LaPorte for reminding me that the Cosmic Forces are not that far away.
Here's some of my current inspiration:

Had trouble getting the player to embed here. Follow through on the link.

As always feel free to comment!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Helping Haiti

Our people need what you can give. They are all our people!

Thursday, January 14, 2010


A poet, a humorist and a philosopher went into a bar...

She ordered a tall, cold glass of Life with extra lemon.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


I write this as an insiders’ view of mental illness. I am not a psychiatric professional and I can only speak from my perspective of events. It is my hope that it will help others in understanding themselves and others who many be suffering similar problems.

It’s all in your mind

This has been a common theme throughout my life. It is one of those truisms that solves nothing, but makes the person saying it feel better, or even superior. The fact is that everything  is “in your mind”, so to speak.

I was a believer, for most of my life, that, if you just maintained a positive perspective on the world you would come out on top of any situation. I still believe that any situation can be dealt with, but that mentally bullying yourself into positive thinking is usually counter-productive and can mask a problem that needs to be dealt with. The subconscious will not be subdued forever. When it decides that you are operating contrary to, what it considers your best interests, it will stop you.

My Story

As a child I exhibited signs of, what is now recognized as “childhood depression”. This lasted from childhood through most of my teen years and subsided after I left home and started living on my own. That period of my life involved finding a job,  reading a lot of  philosophical, religious and self-help materials, writing poetry, and involving myself in the “social mix” of the time (late 60’s & early ’70s). I used my understanding of human nature to build a persona that would be accepted. I am not saying that I was something other than me, but that I shielded my vulnerability.

There were still times when my motivation and willpower crashed and I had trouble making it through the days. And, since I, myself, didn’t totally “believe” in mental illness, it just got chalked up to “being sick” or “catching a bug“, though I knew that there was something deeper and darker, which I attributed to laziness (an awful thing, which is not allowed - ever).

(Remember: that it is only recently that the concept of a man being vulnerable has been accepted even in a few circles; that mental illness is mostly a taboo subject; and  that addictions and drug abuse are tolerated in general society.)

Over the last 40 years I have been through 3 marriages (2 divorces and 1 separation), and more employers and types of work than I can remember, but I was never fired. I was always looking for something that didn't make me feel trapped. And it all seemed pretty much natural to me, I couldn't understand people who wanted to do the same job forever.
What happened

A little over 3 years ago, I began having panic attacks on a regular basis. They had happened before, usually right before I’d leave a job (I‘d told myself that it was just the anticipation of finding something new). But, this time I decided to stick it out, which seems now to have aggravated the condition.
I ended up in the hospital, thinking I was having a heart attack. (Even thinking about it now tightens my chest.) It wasn’t my heart, but I found myself in a constant state of panic and ended up being referred to a psychiatrist who diagnosed “agoraphobia w/ panic attacks“. I took this hard at first. After all, I was, to my mind, a sane optimist. There was hope, but no guarantee, of recovery.

My wife was (and still is) my anchor and best friend. She picked up the pieces of the life we had had and did everything she could to make things normal and help me heal.

 I did get “better”, but was still unable to work or hold a job for long. I could no longer tolerate people and began to enjoy being alone much of the time.

Panic Attacks =>Agoraphobia=>Depression=>Thoughts of Suicide

At this time, I have not recovered and have, instead, battled with bouts of depression and even thoughts of suicide. The thoughts of suicide led to me giving up much of what I had in order to conform more to what, I thought, others thought I should do (many suicidal people give away their things first). I figure having nothing and no perceived control of my life is the closest to suicide that I want to get. Though the thoughts still crept into my dreams and daydreams for months after.

As it is, I have had to give up much that I cherish, due to the demands of agoraphobia. I have started on new medication to relieve the depression and anxiety. And am making definite plans for, what I hope, is a better, more harmonious future. (The uncertainty there is from financial problems that I am trying to fix.)

And so it is that the Kid and I have our work cut out for us. I hope that some benefit is gotten from these posts.
 Feel free to comment, ask questions or share your own experience.
Until next time…

Sunday, January 10, 2010


Agoraphobia is a curse and a gift.

(The opposite of winning the lottery, but much more likely.) There is much that I have learned and much that I have lost due to the “big A”. I deal with self-condemnation, depression and loneliness. And I have had to look within myself and begin to understand who and what I really am, behind the masks and layers of protection built up over decades of being a “productive” member of society.

The Kid

You see, many of the seeds of my condition were sown in my youth. I don’t blame anyone. My father was an alcoholic and my mother suffered bouts of mental illness. To lay blame would be, at best, unproductive.

All of this leads to the concept and reality of the “inner child”. What would this rebellious, creative, visionary and uncertain kid accomplish with some nurturing and encouragement?

Why We Blog

So, I have brought the Kid in to help me with this chronicle of our rebirth and growth into a happy human, to share sources of inspiration and to delve into some of the issues of mental illness. We seek to understand the dreams and barriers in this wild and open world. And, to help others dream and persist in their endeavors to create their lives.

It is easy to be a part of the “real”, status quo world until it is impossible. Then we must grow and become our true selves.


Please feel free to share your own experiences, inspirations and questions. We will be polite, as long as we are treated politely. Your friendship is valued greatly. Thank you.