Wishes : To Be Understood

[Originally Written on Saturday, 05 March 2011

NOTE : I’ve decided to re-post this one. Given what happened today. Given the truth that’s hidden in it. A truth too many people will never understand. A truth too many people simply can’t accept.]

There is a wish I have.
A wish I’ve always had.
A wish I’ve never spoken of.
A wish I’ve had to hide.

I have always wondered why.
Why don’t I understand
What I’ve done
When I’ve done something wrong.
What I’ve done
That scares someone.
Or upsets someone.
Or makes someone wish
I’d just go away.

I have always wondered why.
Why I always hide along the wall,
Or someplace out-of-the-way,
At a birthday party,
Or a wedding,
Or a lunch at work
When someone’s going to leave.
Or a social gathering,
Of any other kind.
Why I never speak
To anyone at all,
Unless they speak to me.
And even then
Why it’s so very hard
For me to say
Anything at all.

And always,
Why it seems
That everyone’s relieved
When I finish talking.
When I go silent
Once again.

I have always wondered why
No one believes
Anything I say.
Like this past Thursday.
When I told my boss,
“I’m a 51-year-old.
In a 51-year-old body.
With a 51-year-old intellect.
But I’m just a teenager
Emotionally.
And I don’t know
That I’ll ever get much further
Than that.”

And my boss,
He said to me,
“You will.”

And I told him
What I’d told my doctor,
And the Fit for Duty Examiner.
That I had no idea
When this whole thing started
What it was I’d done
That got me banned
From work.
That I didn’t understand at all.

And my boss,
He said to me,
“Yes. You did.
You just had never had to face
The consequences
Of the actions that you took.”

I told these things
To my doctor
The very next day.
And when I told him
I was just a teenager
Emotionally.
My doctor said to me,
“And you may never get
Beyond that stage.”

And when I told my doctor
That I didn’t know
In October,
What it was that I had done
That got me banned
From the land of work,
My doctor said to me,
“I know.
And after all this time,
With us having reviewed
What happened in those days.
Now you know
What got you banned.
And you know
What you won’t do again.”

Damn straight.
If you put your hand
On the burner
On the range,
While the burner’s glowing red,
It’s frakkin’ gonna’ hurt.

And I’ve learned
That if I do the things
That got me banned from work,
It’s frakkin’ gonna’ hurt.

No one ever told me
They were wrong.
No one ever explained.
And I had to learn things
The hard way
Once again.

So there is this wish I have.
That I’ve always had.
A simple wish, really.

All I wish for is to be
Understood.
Not punished.
Not abused.
Not bruised.
Not penalized.
Not ostracized.
Not locked away.
Not barred from life.

I just wish to be understood.
And I’ll know I am
When someone finally explains to me
All the things
That I don’t know.
All the things
That every one of them
Takes for granted.
And assumes
That everybody knows.

Because I don’t.
And I never have.

And no one save my family,
My lady
And my children.
And my doctors.
Have ever really understood
That I am this way.

And that I really
Just don’t know
All those secret things
That everyone assumes
That everybody knows.

Saturday, 05 March 2011

Wishes: To Be Understood

There is a wish I have.

A wish I’ve always had.

A wish I’ve never spoken of.

A wish I’ve had to hide.

I have always wondered why.

Why don’t I understand

What I’ve done

When I’ve done something wrong.

What I’ve done

That scares someone.

Or upsets someone.

Or makes someone wish

I’d just go away.

I have always wondered why.

Why I always hide along the wall,

Or someplace out of the way,

At a birthday party,

Or a wedding,

Or a lunch at work

When someone’s going to leave.

Or a social gathering,

Of any other kind.

Why I never speak

To anyone at all,

Unless they speak to me.

And even then

Why it’s so very hard

For me to say

Anything at all.

And always,

Why it seems

That everyone’s relieved

When I finish talking.

When I go silent

Once again.

I have always wondered why

No one believes

Anything I say.

Like this past Thursday.

When I told my boss,

“I’m a 51 year old.

In a 51 year old body.

With a 51 year old intellect.

But I’m just a teenager

Emotionally.

And I don’t know

That I’ll ever get much further

Than that.”

And my boss,

He said to me,

“You will.”

And I told him

What I’d told my doctor,

And the Fit for Duty Examiner.

That I had no idea

When this whole thing started

What it was I’d done

That got me banned

From work.

That I didn’t understand at all.

And my boss,

He said to me,

“Yes. You did.

You just had never had to face

The consequences

Of the actions that you took.”

I told these things

To my doctor

The very next day.

And when I told him

I was just a teenager

Emotionally.

My doctor said to me,

“And you may never get

Beyond that stage.”

And when I told my doctor

That I didn’t know

In October,

What it was that I had done

That got me banned

From the land of work,

My doctor said to me,

“I know.

And after all this time,

With us having reviewed

What happened in those days.

Now you know

What got you banned.

And you know

What you won’t do again.”

Damn straight.

If you put your hand

On the burner

On the range,

While the burner’s glowing red,

It’s frakkin’ gonna’ hurt.

And I’ve learned

That if I do the things

That got me banned from work,

It’s frakkin’ gonna’ hurt.

No one ever told me

They were wrong.

No one ever explained.

And I had to learn things

The hard way

Once again.

So there is this wish I have.

That I’ve always had.

A simple wish, really.

All I wish for is to be

Understood.

Not punished.

Not abused.

Not bruised.

Not penalized.

Not ostracized.

Not locked away.

Not barred from life.

I just wish to be understood.

And I’ll know I am

When someone finally explains to me

All the things

That I don’t know.

All the things

That everyone of them

Takes for granted.

And assumes

That everybody knows.

Because I don’t.

And I never have.

And no one save my family,

My lady

And my children.

And my doctors.

Have ever really understood

That I am this way.

And that I really

Just don’t know

All those secret things

That everyone assumes

That everybody knows.

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Wishes : Happy Holiday

I worked tonight.
Until the store closed.
At 2100 hours last night.
And as I sit here,
Looking at the clock,
I know it’s now
Sunday morning.

Although it’ll be dark
For another 6
Or 7 hours
Or so.

But it occurs to me
That it’s been a while
Since I’ve made a wish
Of any kind at all.

And I’m going to change that
Right now.
On this Sunday morning
I just can’t think
Of anything at all
That I’d rather do.

One week from today
It will be December 25th.
Christmas Day.

There’s something that I’ve always wanted
My entire life.
And I’ve never figured out
How to get it.
I’ve always wanted
To have a happy holiday
On Christmas.

It’s something
I can’t remember
Ever really having.

But, you know.
In the past year I’ve learned
How very much
I can decide
To be happy,
And enjoy the holiday.
Just because I want to.

It’s been a rough year
That I’ve just come through.
One filled with change.
And I’ve learned
So very many things.

I’ve always said
That everything’s a choice.
That I have to decide
To get up every morning.
The choice is mine to make
If I go to work that day
Or just stay at home.

But in this past year
I’ve learned
I can decide
To be happy,
Or sad.
Angry,
Or glad.

It’s all a choice
You know.

And, dang-it.
I’m tired of being frustrated.
And angry.
And I’m tired
Of being sad.
And blue.
And depressed too.

So, I’ve decided
That this year
I’m going to enjoy
The holiday.
And have a good time
Celebrating
The year that I’ve been through.
And all the friends I’ve made.
And so very many people
That I’ve met.

Oh, the gifts
That life has given me
This year.

And I’ve decided too,
That I’m going to make a wish
For all of you.

May you decide to have
A happy holiday
Too.

I know I’m going to.
And I find
I can’t wish
Any less
For you.

Wishes : I Wish You Never Know

I’m going to make a wish tonight.
Just because I can.
Just because I know
That if I close my eyes
And listen to the words
That my heart has to say
I can always find a wish
That I can make.

Even if no wishes
That I have ever made
Have ever come true.

Even of no wishes
That I’ll ever make
In the rest of the days
That I’ve been granted
In this life
Will ever become anything
More than words
Upon a page.

There are words
That I have learned
In this past week.
Words that mean
So very much to me.
Word that were first spoken
By Josephine Hart.

Damaged people are dangerous.
They know they can survive.

The simple truth I live with
Every day of life
Is that I am still healing
From the damage
I’ve survived.

It is from my memories
Of the things that I’ve endured.
The things that I’ve survived.
That I find so many wishes
Yet to share.

I wish that you will never know,
And never understand,
What I have endured
In the past 15 months.

I wish that the heart
That beats within your chest
Will never ache the way
That mine has ached.
Where all you dreamed of
Every night
Was for the pain to go away.
And all you wished for
As you stared
At the ceiling
Above your bed
Was simple oblivion.

I wish your soul
Will never cry
Until no tears are left.
And when those tears are gone
Your soul cries
With all that there is left.
Your soul sheds tears
Of blood.

I wish that you will never know,
And never understand
That kind of pain.

But there is more that I wish
As I write these words
That I share with you.

I wish
That if your heart
Aches the way that mine has ached.
And your soul runs out of tears to shed,
And so sheds tears of blood.

I wish for you to know
That you can
And will
Survive.

That given time.
And patience.
Even pain like this
Will fade away.

That even in the darkest days
Of your entire life.
When you feel like you’ve
Lost everything.
And nothing matters
Anymore.
That always,
The sun rises.

And all you have to do
To dry the tears
That your soul cries,
And sooth the aching
Of your heart.

Is just believe
In who you are.
And give yourself the time
To remember all the things
That you’ve forgotten all about
In this life that we’ve been given.

Feel the breeze
Across your finger tips.
And the palms of your hands.

Feel the sun
As it shines down
Upon your face.

Listen to the sounds
Of the birds
As they sing.

And learn that there are flowers
That bloom
The whole year around.

Watch the waves
Of the ocean.
As they break,
And turn to white.

And most of all,
If your heart aches,
And your soul cries tears of pain.
Please remember
That if you stop
And listen very carefully.
You can hear the words
That your heart speaks.

And I know from my own life
That those words will always say,
“We can get through this.
And find our smile
Once more.
And in doing so,
We’ll be happier,
And stronger
Than we’ve ever been before.”

Wishes: Remember Walking On The Sand

There is a wish I have today.
I’ve had this wish
For several months
At this point in time.
But I’ve never really
Found the words
To capture it.

Until tonight.
And tonight
I’m going to capture it.
And bring it to life
For some special
Friends of mine.

In my life
I’ve been through pain,
And hurt,
That not a lot of people
Understand.

And that pain and hurt
Has all been caused
By the simple fact
That I just don’t
Understand things
The same way
As most people do.

Because of that
I’ve never had
Very many friends.
And many
Of the friends I had.
Well.
After all to short a time
They simply left.

It hurts deeply
When you feel
Like you’ve been abandoned
Once again.
When you spend
Night after night
Sitting in your home.
With no one at all
To talk with.
All alone.

I’ve learned that people
Tend to never understand
What I really mean
When I say to them
That I feel almost
Totally alone.
In a room that’s filled
With people.

It makes things even worse
When I try to explain
The way I feel
To someone that I know
Inside that room.
And they just can’t understand
Why I feel that way
At all.

It’s very hard sometimes
To watch people interact.
To watch them talk.
And laugh.
They seem to be
So very happy.
Having so much fun.

But when I replay every word
That I heard them say.
I can’t figure out at all
What they were saying
That made them laugh.
That made them smile.
That made them seem
So happy to me.

I have tried
So many times
In my life
To talk with people
That I wished
To be friends with.

And almost every time
I’ve failed.
And I don’t really know
What I did wrong.
I’ve tried to talk about
The things I’ve heard
Them talk about,
Time and time again.

Some of them
Have said to me
That the way I behave
Just scares them.
And I don’t know why.
Because I know
I’m a nice guy.
And I wouldn’t hurt
Anyone at all.
That would flat be wrong.

Some of them
Have said to me
That I’m cold.
And aloof.
With no heart
At all.
And I don’t know why.
Because I know that I
Do things all the time
That I don’t want to do.
Because they ask me to.
Because I know
They would like me to.
In fact.
I like very much
When I can help someone.
Even in the smallest way.

Some of them
Have said to me
How angry
I always seem to be.
And I don’t know why.
Because I am angry
So rarely.
But I do get frustrated.
I get frustrated
All the time.
When I say something
That gets taken
All wrong.
When I do something
I was asked to do.
And then get hammered
For doing something wrong.
I’m not angry at all
Most of the time.
I’m just flat frustrated.
And wonder all the time
Why I never seem
To do anything at all
Right.

All of which
Brings me to my wish.
The wish I’m going to make
Right now.

I wish tonight
For those of you
That feel like I do.
Like you don’t fit in.
Like something’s wrong with you.
Like everything you do
Is wrong.
Like you have no friends.
Like no one at all
Understands you.
Or cares for you.

I wish for you tonight
To know.
That you are not alone.
That there are other people
In this great big world.
That feel just like you do.

Lost.
And hurt.
And so very much
Alone.

If there was a way
For me to spare you
All the hurt
And all the pain
That I’ve experienced
In my life.
Just because I’m different.
And I don’t fit in.
I’d use it
Just to keep you safe.
And protect you.
But I know
There’s no such thing.
That I can’t prevent
Your pain.

All that I can do
Is say to you
That you are stronger
Than you know
In your heart,
And in your soul.

For after all
The hurt and pain
I’ve been through
In my life,
I’ve learned
That the hurt
And the pain,
They come
And they go.
They’re transient,
You know.

And they are just another
Part of life.

And because you know
What it’s like
For your heart to ache.
And your soul
To cry such tears
Of pain.

You also know
What it really means
To smile.
To see the sun rise
Once again.
To hear the sounds
Of the birds in the trees.
To watch the ocean’s waves
As they break upon the shore.
To feel the sand
Between your toes.
To feel the breeze
As it flows
Between the fingers
Of your hands.
And oh so many other things.

I know there are times
When the hurt
And the pain
Seem to be
All there is.
And all there will ever be.

It’s when you feel this way
That I wish you to remember
The time that you last walked
Out there on the sand.
Down by the water’s edge.
And listened
To the voice
Of the ocean.
And sometimes just stopped
And watched its waves.

And when you remember this,
Don’t be surprised at all
If you remember other things.
Like the sounds
Of the birds singing.
Or the feel
Of the breeze.
Or the heat
Of the sun
Upon your face.

And remember too
That if you wish
To feel such things again.
To see such things again.
To hear such things again.

That all those things
Are always there.
Every single day.
Even on the days
When you heart aches.
And your soul
Cries tears of pain.

All you have to do
Is notice them.

This is what I’ve learned.
And what I wish
So very much
For you to know.

This is my wish for you
Tonight.