A Twisted Act Of Love

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I feel like I’m walking through a daydream, and I really need it right now. The sun is shining, and that’s a bit of a surprise. Moments ago, the clouds were heavy, and thunder shook the sky. I bit my lip and waited for the lighting, but there wasn’t a light show. Next time, perhaps? A spectacular display of nature’s glorious strength, or something more poetic.

The wind, however, is a mighty critic and puts an end to the pageantry. It chases the performers away, stage left, and in their place comes the most glorious blue I’ve ever seen. This vast and infinite creature hovers overhead. Dashes of white come and go. The longer I stare at it, the more it bends, waves, and gives way to the constant ebb of time.

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It’s almost too perfect, and I can’t stop my mind from joining the clouds on their windy ride. Up, up, and away. Floating. Drifting. Surfing here and there. Never settling or finding solid footing. I float up, and the breeze gently glides me back down. The ground comes closer, closer, then the wind blows, and off I go again.

It’s an odd sensation, but it’s not a troubling one. Not on days like today and weeks like this. We wish we could bypass them entirely, but that’s not going to happen. Things have to be done, experienced or endured. There’s no way around it. We have to face it head-on.


After a shivering blast of cold air, I pull my hoodie over my head and tuck my hands into the front pocket. It’s trying to keep me grounded. The spring chill is trying to bring me back to reality, but I’m not ready yet. Soon, of course, I’ll be back but let me enjoy this escape.

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I turn off my conscious mind and let the autopilot take over. Where will it take me? That’s an excellent question, and we’re going to find out together. I have no idea, I’m writing blind, but I’m open to divine inspiration or a moment of silliness. What will it be? A bit of both, most likely.

I have very little control over myself at the moment. My emotions are going wild, my mind is experiencing an overload, and the mainframe is spinning. It’s kind of like getting hypnotized. Well, it’s how I imagine it would be if I ever let myself do something like that. 

Oh no, I’m not knocking it. People swear that it’s helped them overcome various obstacles. Addiction, mental illnesses, depression, and weight loss, to name a few. If it’s helped you? I’m so happy you found something that works. 

I say that with absolute sincerity. I know how hard it is to overcome some of those monsters. Live your best life and use whatever tools you have to build your paradise. I wish you all the best on your journey through recovery and beyond.

I’m just not…I can’t…It scares the shit out of me.

I had the opportunity to give it a try once. Back in my acting days, I was offered a role on some show. All I had to do was let myself get hypnotized. Not pretend or make-believe hypnosis. Nope, they had a so-called expert, and he was doing it for realsies.

I tried to assure them that I’m capable of being extremely convincing. I can fake anything you like, thank you very much. Isn’t that why you’re hiring actors? We’re professional make-believers. Come on, let me pretend! Ah, but my pleas fell on ears unwilling to listen.

That was the first and only time I turned a job down. Nope, I’m not letting a stranger fuck with my brain like that. I don’t even know if it’s really possible or if it’s a hoax. Can you hypnotize someone to quack like a duck? I was not about to find out.

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Do you really expect me to hand over that kind of control to a perfect stranger? Even if he wasn’t perfect, I have trust issues, so it’s an automatic no-go. Uh uh. Full stop and put the caboose in reverse. I don’t care if it was “easy money.” Of course, I’ll do just about anything for a payday, but I have my limits. Some are firmer than others.

My agent wasn’t too pleased with me, but you’ve gotta draw the line somewhere. Hypnosis was it for me. Standards, people. You’ve gotta have standards and boundaries. Ain’t nobody gonna make me sound like a farm animal without my expressed consent.

And that double negative is grinding the nerve over my left eye. Ew, shiver, closing my eyes and pretending it doesn’t exist.

Another gust of wind, and off I go again. 

Time has stopped when all I want it to do is hurtle itself into next week or just a different day. One where this moment is nothing more than a memory, and this experience is behind me. If I could catch one of those clouds, perhaps I could hop on, and it could be a time machine?

You don’t have to tell me how silly that thought is. Time-travelling clouds. Portals to other dimensions. Blinking in and out of one reality only to appear in another. Ridiculous! But it would be so brilliant, wouldn’t it?

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I could skip today and show up in a better one. A gal can dream, clearly. This whole post is a wayward daydream. It’s blowing wilder than the gusts of wind that chased away the storm clouds. Erratic. Confusing. A mismatched set of thoughts, ideas, and flow of a consciousness that isn’t fully present.

It’s the product of a restless and uneasy mind looking for a temporary reprieve. I just need a few minutes. Five or ten, and then I’ll be alright again. I’ll be able to handle whatever happens next. If I ride the wind, catch a cloud, and float aimlessly? Mm, that’s what I need.

Right now, my dog— my sweet ball of cuddles— is having surgery, and I’m worrying myself into a tizzy. These emotions are uncomfortable, and the clouds are so inviting. All I want to do is drift away like a little black rain cloud hovering under a honey tree. Pay no attention, none at all.

I can’t have kids, my chronic illnesses stole that experience from me, but I have a dog. I rescued him from a dubious home when he was teeny tiny. He was grossly underweight— he fit in the palm of my hand— covered in fleas and scared of his own shadow. The second I picked him up, he buried his head in my neck, and his shivering body relaxed. He sighed and fell asleep.

I spent the next month using a spoon to feed him and give him water. He was too scared to eat or drink on his own. If he had an accident, he’d hide and tremble in fear. I spent hours cuddling him and reassuring him that he was safe. No one would hurt him again. I wouldn’t let them.

Of course, I’m not comparing this experience to raising a human child. That will annoy a few people, I’m sure. But the investment of time, energy, love and compassion? He’s my world, and I’m his. He is the closest thing to a child I’ll ever have, and I would rather die than see him in pain.

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Today, I have to let him experience pain to help him live his best life. Loving him means giving him to capable people and trusting that they will take care of him. It’s breaking my heart. It’s going against every instinct. It has to be done, and when it’s over, he’ll be healthier.

I don’t know how my parents did it. All of those times they had to do this for me? Hundreds of operations and thousands of procedures. Trusting strangers with my life and knowing that the pain I had to endure would give me the best chance at life. It was a twisted act of love.

In an ideal world, pain isn’t love. It’s cruel and evil. When you really love someone, you don’t hurt them physically or emotionally. To do so? In any context other than medicine? That goes against the core of who we are as decent human beings.

Anyone who does that? Well, insert your favourite choice words here.

As I type these words, the daydream is shattering. We don’t live a utopian existence. Our bodies are fragile, and they stop functioning or get injured. We have to let the people and animals we love get hurt so they can get better. Loving them means standing back with hope, fear, and a prayer.

How messed up is that?

When I dropped my pup at the vet this morning? My heart shattered. He looked at me with fear and uncertainty. I wanted to reassure him, but he wouldn’t understand. I wanted to cuddle him and tell him it would be okay, but I couldn’t. All I could do was let him go because his body needs this to stay strong and healthy.

I sat in my car and caught my breath. Once again, I wondered how my parents did it. The answer is clear. It’s the same reason I’m doing this for my little guy. They loved me. In a world that isn’t fair, they loved me enough to let me go into the capable hands of strangers. They trusted, hoped, feared, and prayed because they loved me.

To be loved that much? Whew, I need more time in clouds to process That.

My sweet pup in recovery. Thank you to Country Grove Veterinary Clinic for the picture and taking such good care of him.

*P.S. The surgery was successful, and my little guy is coming home soon. It will be a couple weeks of recovery, but he’ll be okay.*


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