Back Pain & Why Tattoos :

Hi Hi Y’all,

I know more and more I talk about chronic illness. It’s not meant to just be a purge, a kvetch or a notice for recognition. Lately, my flare up have just been getting worse and longer. All the advice doctors gave and the awkward hard to explain moments just seem worse. More then ever, I am just tired. So very tired…

A friend of mine is coming up to visit me in April and I am so excited to have someone see where I go to University and be an understanding friend. I had been debating when ( and more importantly) where to get a back tattoo I have always wanted.

When I was a kid I was obsessed with Yakuza movies, samurai movies and ronin movies. I loved the traditional colorful tattoos on them and the values that seemed to come with them. As I got older, learned more about what it meant and how it was perceived I didn’t want such a large piece anymore. For awhile, I thought about abandoning the idea completely.

Then I got my diagnosis and I started to reconsider. What eventually solidified the desire to get the tattoo was this increasing problems. My drugs are increasing and surgeries that seemed far off seem sooner and sooner. More and more I feel like I am missing out and that I’ll miss out on things even more in the future. Weighed down by everything around me and having it all be unseen is taking a bigger toll on me. I can do less then I used to at the moment and no one really sees it or understands it. More and more I have to come to terms with being seen by the average person as a ‘disappointment’.

It’s these things that make me stop caring about some of the things I used to. If I feel like life is short and changing so much for me I have to at least do the things I enjoy? A giant back tattoo or some crazy visual representation of all my problems probably won’t do much for me, but that doesn’t mean I can’t stick to aesthetic and feel as if I did something to show it.

My back has two curves and a tiny hump on my neck. At the top of my spine there are signs of bones thinning and possibly going to fade away. As you got to the bottom of my spine fusing has started, my hips are out of place and my legs are now two different lengths. None of this can be seen or understood unless I give up and say I want to walk around like Quasimodo so people notice me. That is always going to be the reality of my back. Anything from now on won’t be seen.

I like small minuscule and thin lined tattoos. Normally, I don’t want color and just want simple black. I’ve known since I was small I would want tattoos that represented ideas that meant a lot to me in life. Knowing this it isn’t hard for me to know what sort of tattoo I’d get on my back.

At the top of my neck, I would want in thin black lines Vegvisir. Vegvisir is one of the most popular Nordic charms. It wishes for the person to never lose their way in storm and bad weather even if the path is unknown. I don’t think there is anything more symbolic of everything going on then that. However, there is one more reason. My great grandma’s mother was a Swedish Orphan. She had come to the U.K. and met a Spanish Jew. They married and moved to the U.S. Apparently, unlike her husband and the efforts she put into now being Jewish and raising Jewish kids she never gave up her belief system. She was very very very Christian. I’m talking crosses and bloody Jesus pictures everywhere sort of Christian. Yet, there was one thing that my great grandma remembered seeing even when she didn’t know the name of it until I told her: Vegvisir. In a legacy where only food and some old myths managed to be passed down, my great grandma could vaguely in her dying times remember seeing Vegvisir as a child. Now how could I argue with that? Jewish or not, my great grandma read me Nordic myths as I was growing up, joked how if it was true Odin was 100% cooler than Zeus, and how we were meant to be tough because it was just in our blood. I’m traveling rough waters right now and maybe that means it isn’t just about being Jewish, but remembering all beliefs that helped create me.

Underneath Vegvisir is the real highlight though. Running in small thin lines will be the I Ching and its 64 changes. For a person of my aesthetic and weirdness (and love for Asian culture) what is better then 64 line patterns each symbolizing a different part of early understanding and divination? Nothing. Seriously, nothing at all. My life is certainly one of change and phases, of fortunes and dis-fortunes, and of joy and sadness. These line patterns will follow the crooked path my spine takes all the way to my tailbone. Maybe it will seem funny to some, but to me it’s a little part of the truth. And when these inevitable surgeries come, the scars appear on my back and the fight through new types of pain begins, I have marks of it all. Little lines that exist as part of scars and as part of the journey.

Going through all of this has taught me that living behind a mask is no longer something I’ll really be good at again. My body demands of me the truth. It demands that I grow past the angry cynical jaded girl I was when I was young and try to find the joy of life. It tells me that it will not tolerate lies and will only tolerate truth.

Don’t I have to do it then?

I.L. Knight

P.S. Odin really is way better. Norse > Greek everyday <3

Vegvisir

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I Ching

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Pagan Folk Music – Vegvisir

A Change Of View On Drugs :

Hi Hi Y’all,

I wanted to take a moment to mention something a bit serious again. I have someone I know in University who just came out as going to a counseling session for drug use. Now, just because I go to a top notch university like McGill doesn’t mean the people who attend it are robots immune to the problems. I had known of this person as someone who was pretty straight laced A type student back in their first year of University. Thinking of this person as someone who was going to sessions about a drug problem was shocking to me. They always had it together. They said it started with taking ritalin to stay up and study for exams. From there it went to sleeping pills to then fall asleep and then to other drugs for fun or other things. I’m not going to talk about their story past this. It is their journey and story. However, I am going to talk about the issue as a whole, because my attitude towards it has changed a lot over the years.

I mention it all the time, but I am from a conservative family. Growing up, my family wasn’t big on medication. If you really felt like you needed something just take Tylenol would be enough to tide over the problem. This led me to have two different reactions to the idea of drugs as a child. The first was I thought that people who relied on them or took them were weak and sort of pathetic. The second was me wishing I could take them. Sometimes, as a kid I would try to exaggerate the problem I was having in hopes of care or recognition. I would be sent to school with fevers or colds without a second thought. Part of me felt like if they gave me medicine it would be the same as recognition of it. However, this part was buried down because people who used drugs were weak. I was not expected to be weak. I was the kid everyone pinned their hopes on and had to succeed.

I kept this up for many years. It was a problem I could push away and not have to deal with. Then in high school I started feeling on well more. More people I knew were starting to use drugs for either medicinal purposes or recreational ones. The line between drug use and an individual seemed to get grayer. The idea of a lot of family problems occurring because no one in my family wanted to be responsible and take the medication they should be on became clearer. Still, I pushed this problem away as much as I could.

However, once again in University I was forced to confront this. I had gotten sick. I had entered into a world of chronic pain. No matter how much pain I was in I would actually tell some of my doctors I refused to take certain medications. My own mother had started getting sick about a year before me and was now taking from my family’s point of view lots of medication. Specifically, she seemed reliant on pain medication. The idea of being like that scared me more then it conflicted with my views. What if I started taking pain medication, became reliant on it, dealt with horrible side effects and allowed myself to be weak. I couldn’t allow that, so for three years I avoided some medication I should of been on and only took stronger versions of anti-inflammatory. However, there comes a time where you have to admit that isn’t enough.

When that time came for me I was scared. My fear of failure and all my other problems seemed to load on top of it as if I now had to carry another boulder on my back. I can’t say I am 100% okay with it all yet. I can say that now I can make jokes about it and remind myself I am on medication I need.

However, the biggest change is when I hear about someone like this. I don’t look down on them like I used to. I guess, even if I still think they are weak, a part of me can understand how it came to be. I think I can empathize with them a bit and maybe one day I can grow past my fear of weakness.

McGill sucks,

I.L. Knight

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I Don’t Like The Drugs – Marilyn Manson

Sneak Peek: Poem From New Poetry Book – Coming Soon –

Hi Hi Y’all,

I just wanted to share one of my favorite new poems that will appear in my COMING OUT SOON poetry book, Confessions of a Teenage Poet. The book is a collection of things I’ve written in earlier school years and shows the feelings I kept hidden from a lot of people around me. I think this poem does a great job at showing the underlying feelings I had from moving to high school to university. Some of these feelings I think still are there, but buried under new fears and anxieties.

The Pink Hotel

It’s four a.m. and the crowd twitches,

Built up nerve born from youth

seeking to run free.

“Let us go for a walk.

We are paying for the view.”

A silent ride down.

I walk ahead,

Lost in thoughts,

Drowning in my twenty four hour soda.

I look ahead.

There are low scattered fountains,

Large  and tiled with Spanish flowers.

In the darkness, I see light.

So much light is reflected

In waves of eerie hues.

Another match is burnt away.

“Dammit it won’t light.”

What was it, ten matches?

All to light his first cigar.

I don’t know why he kept trying.

I continue to walk away

To a farther fountain,

Where grass is still gentle,

To collapse in dewy golf turf.

I look to see a snake, none.

The pink hotel is a tower,

Looming in the sky above me.

Endless, reaching heights

I could never reach even reach

Laying eager on my back.

Why is there no stars,

Just a black sky?

A lonely Mercury

out of reach of Venus,

light up the seemingly black oblivion.

One cares to find me,

Upset at the foolish antics of youth.

“Are you ok?”

I smile and admit his thought was right.

I had lied on a truth question.

He looked away

And soon the two others

Reappeared  with a slow burning

Rolled bark of success.

“Want to walk?”

I nodded and got up,

Running ahead of the

Shambling pack.

I was always ahead,

Never next to anyone.

Not much is seen,

But a lonely palm tree

Framing Venus’ Lone arms,

And a single fish darting

Between lighted Angel mirrors.

There is another fountain.

I jump to the highest peak

And look down at my youth.

I open my mouth to say,

“When you were Polonius is this how you felt?”

The guy holding the cigar laughs,

“Never my dear.”

I shake my head and point

at the cigar he holds far from him.

“To thine own self be true.”

They laugh and keep walking,

Remarks on wealth and status.

We were so young, so eager

To make an image of ourselves-

An image we didn’t really understand.

I walk back to the room,

Another silent ride in the elevator.

Quietly I slip inside.

I’m hungry for something new.

I’m lonely.

Why did I choose this pink hotel?

Here Ya Go,

I.L. Knight

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Adolescents – Incubus

A Hard Decision To Make :

Hi Hi Y’all…

Recently I’ve had to make a hard choice. I don’t know if it is something that would be difficult for you, but it is definitely a big step for anyone.

Not many people know this but I have been saving the little money I earned from birthdays and holidays since I was a child. I sort of kind of from a family that taught a kid what an IRA was before basic morality… Actually, I’m pretty sure we’ve never actually had the what does it mean to be a good person talk… We did have money saving, education and stock talks though. The money I had saved was divided into three areas of saving: (1) personal cash savings, (2) savings for future family use and (3) stock.

When I turned 20 I got in a huge fight with my grandfather. He was the one in charge of the money put away for me from my family. The result of our fight was him deciding to let go of control and hand it all over. At the time I was panicking, because I had no idea how to responsible for such a sum of money and for money that was for this future of mine.

Two years later and I know that I am firstly thankful that we did have those sort of conversations in my family. I had a rough plan, I knew how to buy stock, to put limits on my own account and make sure I had an account. But I have also reached a point where this money and this future it is for is now a grey area. I have to help pay for University. Working part time when I can doesn’t do as much as we would wish. I have to be able to pay for as much as I can for myself. I am now in my twenties, with a bad relationship with my family at times, with little capability of being independent and bills to pay.

I had to sell some of the stock for the first time in my life to help cover those bases. I guess to a lot of people that may sound silly of a confliction. But, respectfully, I don’t think you then understand what that means.

I had to touch on something that was a result of the one big epic talk of my childhood. I had to touch the hard work and effort to stay in a reality that I don’t even like half the time. It felt as if I had to stain something black to cover up things. And yea I know it was a proper adult decision…that’s what savings are for… but still I couldn’t help but hover over the sell option.

There was this deep pain in my chest. Like I was losing something. Like the effort I put into it no longer mattered. That’s when I remembered that I had to suddenly go from spoiled to an adult not because of my own choice, but because it was sink or swim…Which, felt even crappier.

But anyways… I sold some. I paid my bills like a responsible adult and I tell myself  I’ll get over that feeling. Because if I hadn’t known to save up all of this time the money wouldn’t of been there in the first place.

I.L. Knight

P.s. OG artwork by xSkyfishx has been updated on the Sabrina Fan Fiction. Catnip and her brother Thorn looking perfectly creepy.

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Time – Pink Floyd

 

Oops. Boys & Sleep :

So, um, you know that boy I swerved. I temporarily fell to the depths of hell. I stayed up till 5 am talking to him. When I had a 7:00 am class. I did indeed fuck up and go down memory lane with someone I used to feel comfortable. BUT, BUT BUT BUT… After we said goodbye I realized I was right to swerve in the first place. I ain’t about all of that. Media platforms back on block.

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I am amazing on my own,

I.L. Knight

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Smile – Lily Allen

So I Can Put This Calmly Behind Me:

Normally, I would be caught up with anxiety and hyper thinking and inability to get back on track. However, I think this time I can not fall into that trap. Instead of being emotional and sad, I want to focus on the good news today. I got offered not one, but two summer scholarships in Japan (a country that has been my #1 one desired country to visit), and I got a nice purple hair dye. I’m going to focus on that.

I’m also, instead of a long rant, be simple and direct about my complaints:

(1) I asked my mom not to call me this week about our issues, because I have a very heavy workload from school and would be already stressed and anxious. She ignored this request to ask me a heavy loaded question.

(2) It is generally inappropriate, and even worse so at the the moment, to ask your daughter if she loves you because you are her mother and if you see her as a mother from over the phone. We already have issues and need these sort of conversations mediated.

(3) Insist at the pain of your answer, when you told her truthfully out of respect. I love my mother as an individual, because of choices she has made for me. I’m no longer a child who looks at the world as simple as, “A mother is someone you love, because she is your mother.” Whether I see my mother as my mother or not that is also complicated.  My mother by definition and logic I recognize as a mom. However, emotional context is different. It’s not a good or bad thing, or grandparents influences, there is just roles that have not been fulfilled. Don’t ask for a simplification of a complicated matter, so lightly and off the cuff.

There is the summary of the phone conversation. Now I am going to let go of it tonight and focus on my work. A couple minutes of deep breathing and calming down will do the trick, because I will not get in my way tonight.

I am capable of staying calming and achieving what I want to achieve,

I.L. Knight

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Daughters – John Mayer

Let Me Love You :

I have to admit it. I am sadder than I thought, Two days of unconsciously reversing my day and night schedule. The denial of how much I’ve slipped so far in 2018. A set of days spent with an obsession of finishing Twilight Fan Fiction because of remembering to take your Ritalin and guilt towards your mom. No more interest in Bravo or slow Jrock ballads. A Saturday of a youtube worm hole featuring Lorde related playlists and glee clips.

I am a sad person, who get scared every time she looks at the door and realizes she’s supposed to be walking through it. Scared of having to actually face the tiny tasks of entering adulthood. Or becoming actually okay with a body that feels like it’s refusing to work. To somehow become okay with the fact that after spending four years to lose weight and maintain it you are fat again. To wake up and not see the weak and rotten person you have become. To try and summon up the will to see people.

I’m just so fucking sad right now.

Even as I write this, Jake’s let me love you is playing, as tears stain the pages I originally wrote this on, and images of the multiple times in your life you’ve been molested or raped. Wondering to myself when was it exactly that I lost my virginity. Which time? When was it that I officially lost my ability to be okay with my body. To be okay with myself.

Was it when I was locked in the closet? When I was alone in my house? When I went hunting for the first time and felt happy for the animal to be part of some circle of life? Maybe it was when I spent seven years of my life only thinking about a toxic person? Maybe it’s right now, hearing this song, realizing statistically I have a dismal chance of anyone feeling that for me. That I am alone in the world. Sad. Crying. Trying for scraps to sustain some shell of a person.

Because everything about is some sort of pain or trauma. I can’t even think of something that wouldn’t be. Never being poor? I think it is a sick joke in the world that having money alone doesn’t mean much. What is it even when you don’t have enough of it to spend it constantly as a distraction.

I could literally die right now, and it wouldn’t mean that much. Because every night I go to bed worrying about how this could be my last night and how that would probably provide me with some relief in just not having to wake up the next day.

Being broken is a pleasant description for people like me. Being a sad reflection maybe being the best compliment we can get. It’s not like we are never not sick at any time in our lives. G-d, I even have to live with snotty tears since fixing my nose. Even when I tried to fix it to help me breathe better. That, and again caving to some pressures of someone else.

Man, after twenty one years of my life I just wish I’d have some root as a living person. Because sadness alone doesn’t do it. It doesn’t sustain you. It doesn’t motivate you. It doesn’t connect you to anything.

You are just sad. And that is your existence. I wish I could admit to myself or to other’s how much I need someone to say they’d love me even if I’m not loving myself. Not that I would even be able to try and find it. I’d probably just become some sick joke of going from completely untouchable to touching everything in sight. And then what I even really become? Some peephole feature in a temporary pop up art exhibit in Japan?

I don’t even know how to end this…

I.L. Knight

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Let Me Love You – Glee Version

If I Were A Boy – Glee Version

So Forget About Last Night :

Maybe yesterday didn’t hurt the most. Maybe this morning even didn’t. Maybe it’s just a dull constant that becomes more sharp in moments. I remember the resentment and hurt I harbor. In any case… this morning hurt.

I never wanted wanted to tell my grandparents – No. That’s a lie. A part of me always did, but was scared of the reaction. I never could handle failure very well. But more than that I can’t handle the reaction to it.

But I had to tell them, my grandparents, that I formed an L.L.C. this time. Because the address I used is their address. All the documents I need will be going to T-H-E-I-R house. And the reaction to it was to be expected – disinterest to questioning why I’d waste the money I had earned from working. And even if I could explain to them that they were over dropping me to work early so I could pick up more hours to fund what I love it wouldn’t matter to them. Because when you are smart the standard they have of what is actually an accomplishment changes.

Yet, still it stings. I never wanted their flattery or attention. I just wanted the understanding of people who raised me that when I dust myself off and try that’s not a failure. Life doesn’t go from bad to great and just stay there. It’s a process and a journey. And if they don’t want to be a guide then at least make me remember I can lead myself.

Trying. Picking yourself up slowly. It isn’t a failure Mamma & Dad. It’s not a waste of money.

I am serious about my own journey. I can make a life out of what I love. So this L.L.C. will fill me with pride. I need to believe in my own strength.

The pain you gave me will hurt enough for a lifetime, but not trying will hurt me even more,

I.L. Knight

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Down With Sickness – Disturbed

Because of You – Kelly Clarkson

The Three Fates

Clotho, Lachesis, Atropos
I don’t know what to write about anymore. Thousands of words and ideas just flow through my head trying to distract me from what I don’t want to admit. I feel empty and alone. So much is going on around me and I am not strong enough to stand through it smiling. Steven Tyler said Every life has a measure of sorrow, and sometimes this is what awakens us. If this is true who decides how much sorrow? As I kid I always thought it was the three fates, that Clotho- the spinner-Lachesis- the measurer- and Atropos- who at death with her shears cuts the thread of life- didn’t just measure our lives but what it was filled with. I figured only blind women could decide how much good and bad we’d have. As I grew older I realized it was stupid to think three women who work with mathematical numbers measure out emotion. We all have a fate, but it doesn’t make us follow a strict path like dolls, it is full of bends and twists. Knowing this I can’t blame someone for the turns I’ve chosen but I want to. I want to blame someone for making me feel empty inside. I want to blame everyone else for me not having it easy, but I know I can’t. G-d gives you what he knows you can handle and even though I’m not handling it well now I can’t help but feel I’ll handle it well tomorrow or the next day. I guess I took a few wrong turns and I gave my heart to the wrong person, but little by little I’ll make my way back and little by little I can get my heart back. I don’t want to feel empty and if I can see the way to not feel empty I’m going to try and take it. I don’t want the idle resignation to my wrong choices. I may love them but I want to awaken my happiness. It may be overly optimistic for me but I want to be happy. I deserve it. I’m a child of this new generation. It’s a generation filled with all kinds of emotional chaos and it may not be the bloody war we define as hardship but it is a war. This is a generation of kids who feel empty, dissatisfied, confused and unsure. Children who want to be the opposite of everything they’re taught. Children who want to leave in fantasy of the past and children who want to live in the fantasy of the future. Well, one day I don’t want to feel alone. I want to myself and everyone else of my generation to feel. 

I’m telling you now. We may be empty shells at the moment. We may look for euphoria by cruel methods and we may royally fuck up, but we are not stagnant. I feel empty, but one day I won’t be, because I can still hope and fight for the chance to not be. We are the Indigo children.
 
Sorry Clotho, Lachesis, Atropos I’m not letting you decide how my life will be like and when it will end.
I.L. Knight
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