STOP BREATHING

I had a neighbor for a while that would constantly bicker with her boyfriend. Bicker is too light of a word…Screaming matches would wake my roommates and I in the early hours of the morning. At first we would text each other “You guys hear that, right?” But it eventually became such a frequent occurrence, a static that we just got used to. I wondered if it would become physically abusive, thankfully it never did.

It always had me thinking about the power of love and comfort. Because there had to be some highs keeping those two together right? In fairness, as an observer only of the things said in anger, I was not in a position to witness any good times. Still, the lows seemed so hateful that I thought to myself all the time, “Why don’t you just break up?” That comfort is such an addiction. Highs so high that you are blinded to the lows

It also had me thinking about how closely love and hate are related. The more you love someone, the more someone loves you, the higher the stakes are in a way.

“Stop Breathing” was written from the female perspective. I felt like I knew her voice better, as she was the dominant force in their arguments.

Like I said a little earlier, I never saw their happy moments and hopefully they had plenty. I don’t want to make assumptions about people I don’t even know, but all the above is where my brain went. Though the song is about them, it’s really about the broader topic- love/comfort/addiction.

STOP BREATHING

It’s your hands, it’s your tone

Your embrace, where did the embers go?

It’s your fault, no it’s mine

It’s that look, apathy in your eyes

Cause if you told me not to cry

I’d keep rain where it resides

And if you asked me not to move

I’d stop breathing

Are you scared?

Are you tired?

Well I’m right here and I don’t care if it takes a while

You are weak

No, you’re strong

So just say words, you cannot answer wrong

Still, if you told me not to cry

I’d keep rain where it resides

And if you asked me not to move

I’d stop breathing

And if you want me not to scream

I’ll speak silence in my dreams

Yea if you need the truth this time

I love you, but don’t know why

So don’t just tell me to calm down

Or I’ll shove pills into my mouth

Oh if you said that you were gone

I’d stop breathing

In The Mourning

I’ve never done a blog post, but I felt like I had more to say about “In The Mourning.” So, this is an unedited free write.

My Grandfather, or Poppy as we called him was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer and declined so fast I couldn’t believe it. I remember feeling light headed the first time I saw him in person about a month after that. The hardest thing about all of this for my family was that Poppy really wasn’t ready to die. He also hated being in a hospital where he spent the remainder of his days. He really wanted to be at home, but there was no way my grandma(Nanny) could take care of him.

Those days visiting him in the hospital were so strange. He shut himself off to the world and to us. It has me thinking about the men in my family- Just my Dad and I really. We’re not good at saying how we feel, but we usually feel very deeply. That last month with Poppy had me wondering why, why is it so hard to say how we feel? Is it because we think we’ll be judged? Is it because men aren’t supposed to cry? Is it because we’re raised to think that’s sign of weakness? That’s such bullshit. If anything, saying exactly what’s on your mind is brave.

Still I sat there in the hospital on countless days with questions flooding my brain for Poppy that I never asked him. I was too afraid to ask him. I guess I didn’t want to be a burden to him in his last days. But I still regret that a lot, the things left unsaid.

What I learned from that, though it’s something I still struggle with putting to actual use, is to take advantage of each moment. Feel every emotion deeply and not be afraid to talk about it. Because what the hell is the point of keeping it from others? That’s what anxiety is, the things left unsaid, the things you never say out loud.

And so here I am over 3 years later, still grieving this loss. It’s wild, the things you thought you were over. Are you really ever “over” something, or does it always stay with you, molding to fit the phase of life you are in, constantly teaching you something new.’

-RJ

“In The Mourning”

Come down, don’t wait

Let’s drown, always

There is more than they allow

Or are you choosing to be wasted?

Will you wake me when it’s over, I got lost among the clovers

And your last drink how it stained me, like some red wine on my memory

I could hold you till forever, though the voices say it’s better

Through the blackness and the swarming, in the mourning we are found

Same day, new clouds

Mistakes, I’m bound

Feel the daylight all around

Or are you wanting to be wasted?

Will you wake me when it’s over, I got lost among the clovers

And your last drink how it stained me, like some red wine on my memory

I could hold you till forever, though the voices say it’s better

Through the blackness and the swarming, in the mourning we get angry

Cause we’re holding onto something, so we raise our voice at nothing

There’s no rhyming with a reason, I need something to believe in

Wont you notice I’m on fire, am I pleading with the choir

Oh the blackness and the swarming, in the mourning we are found