DECEMBER 1, 2021: “UNO Momento Por Favor!” …

Okay, so HERE’S a fun idea for all of you “social media trendy” wives and significant others …

How about instead of just, “Ha ha, hee hee, it’s all in good fun!” poking fun about what an epic disappointment your broke ass, one-abbed “Prince Charming gone wrong” of a husband is, maybe you should just start posting pics of his umm, YOU KNOW, “‘lil guy”, too.

EMASCULATION!

It’s what’s for breakfast … and lunch … and dinner … and it’s gross … aaand I’m fairly certain that if a buncha “Tik-Tok” husbands out there doing the “for the sake of likes and clicks” dealio got together and started another VIRAL frenzy wherein they show the whole entire world, “Ha ha, hee hee, it’s all in good fun – but just look what a lazy, smelly, PIG the princess I thought I was marrying turned out to be!”, there’d be some damn HATE crimes and “Tik-Tok husband” MURDERS!

Umm, so here’s another “dealio” – I hate to tell ya, but behind every “joke” there IS a bit of truth. I know it. You know it. THE ENTIRE FUCKIN’ WORLD KNOWS IT!

“Normalized” Emasculation

Yah! That’ll be fun! By the way, in case you haven’t figured it out by now, I’M AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY ABUSER! I don’t think ANYONE – man OR woman – should be throwing their one-abbed spouses under the marriage joke bus. But hey, what do I know, right? My GOSH, people, it’s hard enough for anyone out there to fight the good and valiant fight when the world at large just wants to rip the people livin’ in it apart. C’mon ladies, indeed it is oh so true – If you don’t “crown” him, pick him up and value him, who else in this jacked up world will? PROTECT THE SANCTITY OF YOUR RELATIONSHIP! Marriage is hard. Being a HUMAN is hard. “Ha ha, hee hee – my significant other is a failure! Oh, but no, I’m just kidding! I’m only doing this for LIKES and CLICKS.”

GROSS!

Hi everyone, it’s me, CAT, and I’m only ever here to keep it REAL. Some things are funny. Some things are not. Love me or hate me and call me the party poopin’ FUN POLICE, but SOME things just ain’t right! Publicly shaming and disrespecting your FAT and BROKE spouse is one of them!

NOVEMBER 30, 2021: “Them Bad Seeds And Rotten Apples” …

ARE YOU KIDDING ME WITH THIS RIGHT NOW? I mean, but seriously people. WHAT THE HELL? Whereas I would say that my mouth just hit the FLOORA, I’m gonna rather say my mouth just hit the QUORA!

NOTHING DEFINES A “BAD KID”, except, that is, for the TOXIC ADULTS who refer to kids as “BAD”! So, let’s have a looksie at the powerful and vast differences between two seemingly simple words that are all too often are simply tossed into the dirt like so many poisonous seeds with absolutely no caution to the wind whatesover …

“BAD” v. “GOOD”

DIDJA GET ALL THAT? If not, go back and read the definition of “BAD” over and over and OVER again until you’ve FINALLY hammered it into your skull!

When a parent, caretaker, or any adult refers to child as “bad”, they are, by definition, saying they’re poor quality, low standard, inferior, second-rate, unpleasant, disagreeable, and UNWELCOME! Generally speaking, when someone hears that something is “BAD”, it’s almost always a negative connotation, except of course when something is “bad to the bone” or cool!

PLEASE don’t get me wrong – children can be difficult. This I know all too well! Lol. Unless you really know me and had the privilege of knowing me as a child, what you don’t know is that I was thought to be and told incessantly that I was, indeed, DIFFICULT! But, umm, have ya met any “adults” since you yourself have been one?

The last time I checked, human beings in general can just be downright DIFFICULT! Are there “bad behaviors”, “bad choices”, and “bad situations”? Umm, YAH! You know, kinda like the bad behavior of the approximately sixteen and counting dumb as ass ASSES who went to great lengths trying to quantify what defines a BAD kid” in answer to that Godforsaken question!

BE IMPECCABLE WITH YOUR WORDS! Oh, and don’t think for one second that just because you don’t refer to your child as “BAD” either directly to them or within their earshot that they don’t know exactly what think about them. Not only do some actions speak much, much louder than words, kids aren’t as oblivious as you think they are, and they’re usually always listening!

Look, I’m certainly no doctor, but I am an adult survivor of one of THE most challenging mental illnesses there is. As such, I have spent more than my fair share of “time in the chair” with real doctors and mental health professionals trying to reconnect the broken transmitters in my formerly jacked up fucking psyche. More so than that, during my various periods of hospitalization and group therapy settings, I have personally known an entire army of equally dismantled adults whose “insanities” almost always rooted back to the toxic words and labels gifted them by the “adults” in their childhood lives. My point being – I know all too painfully well what a heaping pile of BULLSHIT these words are:

Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me.

Umm, yes!

YES THEY CAN!

Not only can words most definitely hurt you, they can also unwire the original hardwiring you came packaged with the day you were born. Unless there are specific genetic or chromosomal issues that were somehow developed in utero, babies aren’t “born” with broken minds. IT’S THE WORLD THAT FUCKING BREAKS THEM, and nine times out of ten, that destruction originates with the adults in their early lives and their abysmally negative WORDS! Just as positive words can elevate a child’s cognitive development and brain function, negative words can destroy and misdirect healthy cognitive development and brain function! So, with that, unless you are evil (and YES there are purely EVIL “parent things” out there), YOU CAN DO BETTER!

BAD SEED

I didn’t give up the fight – I gave up on what’s right – everything I should’ve believed. I don’t care about the warnings, just who I’ve become. You swore that I wouldn’t succeed. I know that you’re wrong! Insanity embraces me – it’s what I chose and it’s what I believe. I still stand here strong! I won’t deny, deny, the Sun never shines. It always rains on me. I can’t deny, deny, that I’ve never tried. No honor amongst us thieves. Inside, inside – I try to survive, strangled by the waste. You can’t deny, deny, that I never tried. It’s always been on me. I’m just a bad seed. I’m just a bad seed. I’M JUST A BAD SEED! I gave up on the Light – I gave into the night – I never knew how much I could bleed. When it’s all said and done, I still stuck to my guns, I always knew what I couldn’t take. Even if I’m wrong – HONESTY IS EVERYTHING – it’s what I know and it’s what I believe. I still stand here strong! I’M JUST A BAD SEED! {Five Finger Death Punch}

NOVEMBER 26, 2021: “The Zephyr In Their Sky!” …

Although I have had the awful displeasure of watching a short handful of the human souls I’ve been the most connected dying right before my eyes, not the least of which was my daughter, perhaps the saddest and most painful moment of my life was the day my two surviving children had to watch their own mother having an actual nervous breakdown and being hauled off to a psych ward over a thousand miles from home:

They literally had to peel my son from my body so that I could get into the car. He too was sobbing and I’d never seen him cry so much or so hard. And Gia? She looked so lost, like a little puppy that just wanted someone to pick her up and hold her.

{“Speaking Of Faith And Crowns“}

Even now, as resilient as I’ve truly become, when I flash back to “the day on the driveway” and remember everything they had to see, it breaks my heart all over again knowing how their hearts got broken going through that kind of trauma. No child should ever have to witness such a thing!

All that being said, and regardless of how horrifying so many of the moments in all our lives have been, I wouldn’t change a single step of this dance we’ve been sashaying through together. Through it all, I can only hope that they’ll have learned that the pain has been a gift, death is nothing at all, and that win, lose, or draw, they’re gonna be okay BECAUSE THEY GOT ME FOR A MOTHER!

I’m an epic masterpiece of magnanimous proportion, and after I’ve made it to The Brighter Side Of Grey, both they and their kids are gonna look back at this painting I’ve been faithfully working on and say,

DAMN! She was OUR mother!” She was nothing short of magic, because despite her many circumstances, she rose up like a phoenix to spread her light, her love, her truths, and her warmth from the fire that burned in her soul.

Then I’ll be that beautiful warm breeze that lands softly on on their shoulders and whispers hope into their ears, and every ray of light that sparkles in their eyes as they bask in the legacy I’m leaving behind.

Oh, don’t you worry my friends, despite the seemingly macabre tone of this entry, I’m not planning on going anywhere anytime soon. Although it is true that I’m fully prepared for what I know is coming next, I’m in love with my existence in this space and still have so much to do and see. I’m just thinking wide out loud right now, because this song I’ve loved since I was not quite 30 years old found it’s way to the cue on my stereo this morning. Back then, it was just a song to me with a upbeat mood and vibrant tone, and never in a million years would I have thunk that I’d be the ray of light in those words, but here I am lighting it all up from my very own little piece of Heaven from here until eternity. I am SUCH a lucky woman, and I cannot say it enough. I am power, and grace, and a divinely appointed apostrophe punctuating peoples’ lives with my glow. I will never be ashamed of all the pain that I have carried – it’s what forged me into the steel fortress that I am.

RAY OF LIGHT

Zephyr in the sky at night – I wonder – do my tears of mourning sink beneath the Sun? She’s got herself a universe gone quickly. For the call of thunder threatens everyone. And I feel like I just got home. And I feel. And I feel like I just got home. And I feel. Faster than the speed of light – she’s flying – trying to remember where it all began. She’s got herself a little piece of Heaven, waiting for the time when Earth shall be as one. And I feel like I just got home. And I feel. And I feel like I just got home. And I feel. Quicker than a ray of light. Quicker than a ray of light. Quicker than a ray of light – then gone – for Someone else will be there. {Madonna}

NOVEMBER 25, 2021: “The Gauntlet” …

… because sometimes you have to choose to protect your own “mental wealth” over showing up at the obligatory NOT so “family meal” for the sake of everyone else’s feelings or “doing the right thing”. Is it selfish? Umm … YAH! Guess what people?

BEING SELFISH IS ALLOWED!

The holidays are meant for going home and spending time with family, but let’s face it, not everyone has a family to go home to – OR – whereas their “family” might physically exist, it’s just not a safe place to go back to.

THAT BEING SAID …

We all have a HOME when “home” is wherever WE are! My true HOME is with ME, and here with ME there is no medieval torture “gauntlet” to run through :: No toxicity. No hatred. No judgment. No guilt. No shame. No yelling. No screaming. No anxiety. No nausea. No cringing. No crying. No suffering! NO HAVING TO TAKE YOURSELF OR SOMEONE YOU LOVE TO AN EMERGENCY ROOM TO BE MEDICATED AFTER HAVING A PANIC ATTACK AT “FAMILY DINNER”!

It took me fifty something years to finally figure out that there are no rules to this game, so stop playing by everyone ELSE’S rules if they make you physically ILL!

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone celebrating this beautiful American holiday, especially the “alone but NOT lonely” like me. For the record, I am so beyond thankful that I have arrived at this place in life where I can choose to allow myself every bit of the power, grace, and unconditionally safe love I want to receive from this cosmos. If, like me, “going home” literally feels like walking on not just eggshells, but razor blades, nails, glass, quicksand, land mines AND eggshells … then just chose YOU and STAY “HOME“! Your family is YOU and the ONE parent who will NEVER forsake you … God. These days when I sing this song, it’s HIM who I am singing it to.

HOME

I’m staring out into the night, trying to hide the pain. I’m going to the place where love and feeling good don’t ever cost a thing and the pain you feel’s a different kind of pain. Well, I’m going home, back to the place where I belong, and where your love has always been enough for me. I’m not running from, no, I think you got me all wrong. I don’t regret this life I chose for me, but these places and these faces are getting old. So I’m going home, well I’m going home. The miles are getting longer it seems, the closer I get to you. I’ve not always been the best man or friend for you, but your love remains true and I don’t know why. You always seem to give me another try. So I’m going home, back to the place where I belong, and where your love has always been enough for me. I’m not running from, no, I think you got me all wrong. I don’t regret this life I chose for me, but these places and these faces are getting old. Be careful what you wish for ’cause you just might get it all. You just might get it all and then some you don’t want. Be careful what you wish for ’cause you just might get it all. You just might get it all, yeah. Oh, well I’m going home, back to the place where I belong and where your love has always been enough for me. {Daughtry}

NOVEMBER 23, 2021: “Rise Up To YOU!” …

You.

IT’S ONLY YOU. It’s only YOU who can fill those cracks in your broken heart with the most magical “healing compound” of them all: YOU! No, I take that back. What I meant to say is YOU AND GOD! Not you and someone else. Not you and somewhere else. Not you and strangers, or money, or fame, or fortune, or stuff. Just you, yourself, and that beautiful reflection standing in your mirror that you’ve been refusing to make peace with and fall in love the way that God fell in love with you about two billions eons before you were even born. He never meant for us to seek the pleasures of this world … that’s the trick the devil did. God wants to be the One to bring you happiness and peace, because if anyone besides us knows how this world keeps on disappointing us, it’s Him. He wants us to turn to HIM, and then back to ourselves, so that we don’t hurt US or anyone else anymore.

Let’s face it folks, there’s always gonna be some kind of darkness lying in wait just ahead of us. I mean, ‘cmon, have you seen this world we’re living in? No matter how bright the artificial lights we flip on and off to navigate ourselves through it all, or how many steps ahead of all the bullshit we try to stay, there’s always gonna be a bottomless pit of EMPTY just waiting to swallow us alive. Guess what? That internal spotlight we often hide from is the exact same one that emits the true power and grace from our soul that allows us to see the beauty of our own reflection.

The more we stray, the less we fear, and the more we reach, the more we fade away.

Umm, can’t you just smell the paradox? This whole self-love dealio seems to contradict itself, does it not? We need to find our light. We were meant to find our light. Our light is both ourselves and God. You know? GOD – the One Who is to be feared and not feared all at once? He WANTS us to shine that light on ourselves – SHINE HIS LIGHT ON OURSELVES – but that light can be super scary. “To whom much is given, much is expected.” Now those are some scary words, too. Truth be told, some people don’t want the responsibility that comes with such a powerful force, so they opt for the easy way out of all they were meant to be, leave themselves behind, head into the world to find themselves in “someone or something else”, then wonder why they feel so lost, and empty, and lonely.

Unless and until you take hold of all that power and wield it like a beacon in the night, you will always be hoping for “other indications” of who you really are and seeking “higher elevations” from the outside world you were never meant to seek. Trust me when I say this, ’cause I’ve been there and done that, but if you aren’t capable of being at absolute peace in the company of your own solitude, any other person, place, or thing you attempt to have a relationship with is nothing more than a cruel trick that you’re playing on yourself to avoid facing the gaping hole in your heart left by this world. Just rise up, STAY RISEN, and go back home to YOU!

RISE UP!

I was hoping for an indication. I was seeking higher elevation. I’ve been shaken, waking in the night light. I’ve been breaking, hiding from the spotlight. The more I stray, the less I fear, and the more I reach, the more I fade away. The darkness right in front of me. Oh, it’s calling out and I won’t walk away. I would always open up the door. Always looking up at higher floors. Want to see it all give me more. I was always up for making changes. Walking down the street meeting strangers. Flipping through my life turning pages. Like a prayer that only needs a reason. Like a hunter waiting for the season. I was there, but I was always leaving. I’ve been living, but I was never breathing. Flipping through my life turning pages. I’m bursting like the fourth of July, so color me and blow me away. I’m broken in the prime of my life, so embrace it and leave me to stray. I would always open up the door. Always looking up at higher floors. Want to see it all give me more. {Imagine Dragons}

NOVEMBER 19, 2021: “Le Symbolique” …

If you’ve ever lost someone that you love, regardless of the “how, when, and why”, you know that sometimes it’s the most beautiful memories of life with that now missing person that can hurt you the very most.

So, you’d be 2,000% okay going without dad?

Oh, Mom, when we finally do go back, trust me – HE’LL BE WITH US!

If you knew anything about him, you know that Disney World was one of Zack’s favorite places of all. With that in mind, I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again … If indeed he can still see us, and I know in my heart that he can, he would be devastated beyond conception if we let the possibility of too many “flashbacks and memories” keep us from going to one of “our places”. So, here’s what I’m thinking … Rather than let the flashbacks and memories make us want to cry, we’ll just go back to all those places again and laugh!

Meanwhile, so now what’s the dealio with this “Le Symbolique”? Well, I’ll tell ya! First of all, take look at the definition …

So, with that, not only is this beautiful instrumental by one of our favorite bands one of our favorite and most uplifting musical gifts, this first trip back to one of the truly most MAGICAL places on Earth is “Le Symbolique” of not just our journey going forward without him, but all the love, laughter, and truly MAGIC adventures we ever had got to have with him in the first place. Even more so than that, because of my deep love of France and the “symbolique-ism” of what my very first trip there ever meant, one of the sweetest things that man would ever do for me as soon as we’d step foot into “the kingdom” is make it a point to see to it that we went straight to the “France” in Epcot and sit down for a croissant. That, my friends, may very well be amongst the most bittersweet “flashbacks and memories” we will be sure to LAUGH our way back to magic when we get there!

NOVEMBER 17, 2021: “It’s GOOD To Be Alive” …

… because for every time I, myself, was my very own worst enemy, “hammer in hand” and all, having to just sit back now and watch helplessly as one of the very few human beings I’ve ever truly loved wields that same familiar hammer is all but fucking devouring me! That Godforsaken mallet has been smashing the hearts, minds, and souls of everyone whose ever touched it for only GOD knows how long. In the meantime …

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Living one day at a time, enjoying one moment at a time, accepting hardship as a pathway to peace, taking, as Jesus did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it, trusting that You will make all things right if I surrender to Your will so that I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with You forever in the next. As for me and mine? It’s still SO GOOD to be alive!

TO BE ALIVE

I know you don’t believe it like I believe it. Oh no, it’s not your fault – you sit alone inside a room – wait for the world to come to you. They never do. It must be something that you can’t let go. It hurts that you won’t let me know. Every time you want to, any time I touch you, I can’t help to be myself. I hold on to this moment – any time is right to be alive. And then in conversation, I love the way you mention, “nothing’s ever gone your way” with a hammer in your hand. You spell out a master plan. You never learn. It must be somebody holding your heart. Something that tears us apart. Every time you want to, any time I touch you, I can’t help to be myself. I hold on to this moment – any time is right to be alive. And I don’t think that it’s right to let love pass by. Any time of life, it’s good to be alive. {Def Leppard}

NOVEMER 17, 2021: “The OTHER Golden Rule” …

Most everyone has probably already heard that age old Golden Rule, “Do unto others as you would have done unto you”, but lemme ask you this: Have you heard the other Golden Rule … “Circa 2021” by The REAL Cat Williamson …

Perhaps you’ve heard it said before, “we train others how to treat us” – NOTHING could be further from the truth. We learn how to treat us based solely upon the treatment we choose to accept from others. So, with that, what’s even more important than “training others how to treat us” is “training US to treat us”!

The way we believe about, treat, and even speak to and about ourselves sets the gold standard for the treatment, behaviors, and “speak” we receive from others. If we allow ourselves to speak to us like SHIT, why would anyone else think it’s not okay to speak to us like SHIT?

The only way to change the voice in your inner head is to change the language in which you speak to yourself. Let’s face it – NOTHING good EVER comes from a person who talks to and treats themselves like shit. Unless you’re one of the truly fortunate people who somehow managed to escape their childhood in one piece, chances are that there’s a younger version of you living just beneath the scars you wear as an adult who NEEDS to hear all the things they never heard when they were a kid, SO SAY THEM! Say them kindly. Say them sweetly. Say them gracefully, gently, and FORGIVINGLY!

AND REMEMBER THIS:

Nothing ’bout you is ordinary, so if your friends all say you’re goin’ crazy, DON’T LISTEN TO A WORD THAT THEY SAY! Let the voices in you head be legendary and don’t ever tell ’em where the bodies are buried … it’ll keep ’em coming back every day!

{“Real Cat” Adaptation to “Attention Attention!” by Shinedown}

ATTENTION ATTENTION!

Attention! Attention! Get down on the floor! Don’t reach for your pockets, don’t run for the door! Attention! Attention! It’s urgent, it’s real! The cameras are rolling, the envelopes sealed! Attention! Attention! By the way did I mention? The stories I hear are the stories I tell – like jumping over buildings and sneaking outta hell! Intention! Retention! It’s all in your head! That greedy little mistress they tied in in your bed. Attention! Attention! By the way did I mention? Nothing ’bout me is ordinary. My friends all say I’m going crazy. I don’t hear a word that they say. ‘Cause the voices in my head are legendary, but I’ll never tell ’em where the bodies are buried. Keeps them coming back every day! Oh no! Oh no! They’re just villains in my mind doin’ time. Oh no! Oh no! They’re just matches burning holes in my soul. Attention! Attention! ‘Cause this ain’t a stunt. The judges are racist. The juries corrupt. The shelves are all empty, but the seats are all filled. You’re a shiny new penny, I’m a hundred dollar bill. Attention! Attention! By the way did I mention? Nothing ’bout me is ordinary. My friends all say I’m going crazy … {Shinedown}

NOVEMBER 14, 2021: “The Sun WILL Rise” …

For every other person who “shows the world” nothin’ but the lollipops and rainbows in their lives, there’s the ones like me who are here to keep things REAL! Yup, I hit the ground this weekend and leveled the YEARS of blood, sweat, tears, and toil slaying my dragon. Literally, and not metaphorically, all that hard work went in the fucking toilet.

Yes, my friends, even phoenixes crash and burn, especially when what’s “eating her alive” the most are things out of her control such as crocodiles and spider webs that want to devour her babies alive. For now, I’ll just have to forgive myself with all of the power and grace that I am, get the crown back up on my head, pick up my sword, and put the fucking CREATURE to sleep once again. I am only as weak as my very worst enemy, which at the moment has just became me. This too shall pass. “Just for today, I will try to live through THIS day only.” But here’s what else I’m telling you all … I will not REST until the day that FUCKING Venom suit is finally off my kid’s body. In the meantime …

MY DEAREST CAT:

I can see the weight there in your eyes. I can feel the thorn in your side. Your knuckles are bruised from a losing fight (again). The road we’re on’s not a dead-end street, even with the glass broken underneath our feet. You KNOW the day will break this Sunless night. THE SUN WILL RISE! You haven’t lost your Light – THE SUN WILL RISE! YOU’LL BE ALRIGHT! You’ve been stuck in a storm like this before and felt the wind raging at your door. We couldn’t move, we couldn’t breathe, we couldn’t find a way out. Still those clouds all disappeared and you and I finally made it here, maybe just so you could hear me say: THE SUN WILL RISE! YOU’LL BE ALRIGHT! I already know that you can see it, even though it’s so hard to believe it. It’s times like now you just need to hold on to your faith. YOU are the answer to our prayer, and I swear when TOMORROW comes … THE SUN WILL RISE. IT’LL BE ALRIGHT!

Love you FOREVER … “ME”

{Adaptation from “The Sun Will Rise” by Kelly Clarkson}

NOVEMBER 12, 2021: “Like I Am” …

“The Cheeseburger & Tears Text”

At this point in my life, I have become a staunch proponent of leaving the past in the past, because looking in the rearview mirror can do much more harm than good if you haven’t reached that threshold yet where even beautiful memories can level you. That being said, I am also wise enough to know that sometimes you really do have to look backwards in order to keep moving forward. Not only is studying the past the best way to either repeat or not repeat certain cycles, mistakes, triumphs and even people, it can also be where the most authentic looks at ourselves can be found.

For example, the famous “Cheeseburger & Tears” text between Christian and Zack from November 12, 1996, that I recently saw on his phone again. Trust me when I tell you that everything in my soul wanted to burst into tears when I saw it, but then something prolific just washed right over my heart and stopped the tears that were filling my eyes literally dead in their tracks. It was a poignant look at myself through another person’s eyes and words:

I have my own major flaws that your mom doesn’t talk about because she always thinks the best of everyone.

Indeed, it’s true. I really do always think the best of everyone. Well, at least I try to that is. It’s both a major character flaw and a major character perk, depending on “what” or who is on the receiving end of my seemingly bottomless pit of forgiveness. Even now with my boundaries as firmly BOUND and in place as possible, my heart is as ever more marshmallow than steel. I mean, don’t get me wrong, a fortress I truly am, especially when it comes to “peopling“, and as a living queen, I accept nothing less than everything.

At the end of the day, though, as I was sitting with Zack’s phone in my hand trying to decide whether to cry or smile, it was the latter of the two that won the prize. This “Cheeseburger & Tears” text reminded me once again of not just who I am, but that I was truly and unconditionally loved just like I am, which as we all know is one of the many reasons I’m still sitting here at all with the insurmountable and unconditional love I now have for myself.

Inasmuch as I’ve come to adore Rascal Flatts over the years, of course they were the background music for our many road trip adventures. With that, I cannot tell you how many times this song must have cued up, at which point we’d always lock hands (if they weren’t already locked) and I’d get the “three squeeze I love you“. So, today as I’m listening to it, I’m tweaking the words and singing it to him out loud:

Lying here without you, I know you watch me sleep. The dawn is closing in with every breath I breathe. I can feel the change – the change you made in me. And now I truly see all the things you saw in me. When you said that I was one of a kind. Baby, I couldn’t see it, but you believed that I’m so strong and true. I promise you – I’ll always be this kind of girl, because loved me like I am.

Okay, and just for the record, NOW I’m actually crying my eyes out. Good grief. It’s okay. They’re happy tears, not sad ones. Well, maybe just a little sad. Okay, I’m done.

NOVEMBER 10, 2021: “Birds” …

… because after all this time becoming “the crazy bird lady” but not being quite sure why, every one of their beautiful wings just delivered me full circle with an answer from The Cosmos that I simply cannot explain. Some day when the time is right and the seasons have come and gone enough such that she can finally read this Diary, only my Mona Lisa will fully understand the magnitude of the moments behind this entry.

Gia, my muse, I’m sobbing as I’m writing this to you, but my tears are only filled with gratitude and joy. “When the moon is lookin’ down shinin’ light upon your ground, I too will be flyin’ up to let you see that the shadow cast is me.” Looks like I got that answer we were talking about, and actually so did you. God is so good, as are all these messages, and these BIRDS will just keep speaking the truth. I love you daughter, and YES, we really are okay!

BIRDS

Two hearts, one valve. Pumpin’ the blood, we were the flood, we were the body and – two lives, one life, stickin’ it out, lettin’ you down, makin’ it right. Seasons, they will change. Life will make you grow. Dreams will make you cry, cry, cry. Everything is temporary. Everything will slide. Love will never die, die, die. I know that ooh, birds fly in different directions. Ooh, I hope to see you again. Sunsets, sunrises. Livin’ the dream, watchin’ the leaves changin’ the seasons. Some nights I think of you, relivin’ the past, wishin’ it’d last – wishin’ and dreamin’. Seasons, they will change. Life will make you grow. Death can make you hard, hard, hard. Everything is temporary. Everything will slide. Love will never die, die, die. I know that ooh, birds fly in different directions. Ooh, I hope to see you again. Ooh, birds fly in every direction. Ooh, so fly high, so fly high. When the moon is lookin’ down shinin’ light upon your ground, I’m flyin’ up to let you see that the shadow cast is me. {Imagine Dragons}

NOVEMBER 7, 2021: “The Stranger In The Mirror” …

DEFLECTION: Loosely defined, “attempting to draw attention away from oneself and put that attention onto another person.” GOT IT!

PROJECTION: Also loosely defined, “a defensive mechanism by which we displace our feelings onto a person, animal, or object.” This is one of Sigmund Freud’s ‘lil nuggets, by the way, about how some people deal with their lack of self-esteem and feelings of insecurity and adequacy. GOT THAT, TOO!

PERCEPTION:

Either “loosely defined”, or not so “loosely defined”, depending on where you are in my “Understanding People For Dummies 101” process. This right here is one of “Real Cat’s” ‘lil nuggets, by the way …

At the end of the day, neither projection, deflection, or any other clinical words, phrases, or diagnoses mean a damn hill of beans. PERCEPTION, my friends, is everything, and aside from our faith, is really the only thing we need to understand to navigate this whole life and “peopling” dealio. Perception is our ability to hear, see, become aware, and conceptualize things by using our senses.

What have any of you heard me say about what other people think of us? In case you’ve forgotten, let me remind you :: WHAT OTHER PEOPLE THINK OF US IS ABSOLUTELY NONE OF OUR BUSINESS! We are NOT what people think of us, we are what people think of THEMSELVES! So, please try to remember this the next time you think about letting the opinions of other people control your life or define you. Someone else’s opinion of you is merely a reflection of their own personal experiences, beliefs, and realities, and sometimes a reflection of a war that their battling within themselves. Only take what is useful and valuable from other peoples’ words, thoughts, and “opinions”. NOTHING MORE. NOTHING LESS. Only YOU know the size and shape of the shoes you’ve been walking in every single day since the minute you were born, and only YOU know how the comfort, fit, and style of those shoes have shaped YOU!

Now then, here’s yet another one of my tweaked up renditions of one of my favorite songs. Listen to it as though you’re singing it to yourself, and let it wash right over you, lest you remember that although not a single one of them damn peoples’ nasty, misperceived opinions of you matters, YOUR SELF REFLECTION DOES! Do whatever it takes to make friends with that person you see standing in the mirrorthey’re your ride or die from this day ’til eternity! How you feel and what you think of YOU is also – EVERYTHING …

Are you looking for some validation like everyone else? Are you going through a transformation and losing yourself? Have you ever tried to make the pieces fit when you knew it wasn’t you? Are all the eyes looking in on you now making you unable to see?

Did you give off the wrong impression of somebody else? Have you made some bad decisions you’ll regret? Is that all you have left? Are you afraid of who you are? Can you be satisfied? If there’s a way to take it back, who will you find?

Who’s that stranger in the mirror looking back at you now? Are the illusions getting clearer? Are you lost and cannot be found? Do you even recognize your face, or are you just so out of place? Who have you become? Is there a stranger in the mirror? You’ve got to find a way out!

Stop running … running … RUNNING from you. You forgot who you once were. There’s a stranger in the mirror and you can’t be something you know that you’re not!

{“Real Cat” Adaptation to “Stranger In the Mirror” by Trapt}

NOVEMBER 4, 2021: “The Bullshit On Your Driveway” …

Wait! NO! Not “what if” I told you … THIS IS ME TELLING YOU! It’s not always easy to see through all the BULLSHIT piling up in front of you, especially when it’s being shoveled directly to you from your “family, friends, and loved ones”. This I know too well! But hey, wait! Lemme ask you this

Was there ever a time that you could define? Tell me was there ever a time that you could refine what was boiling deep inside you? What was building up inside you? So what’ll you do when none of it’s true? Ya gonna go and break the mirror you thought was you while it’s coming down around you? It’s all falling down around you! If I took away your one excuse? Helped you down and cut the noose? Would you leave it all behind you? Could you leave this all behind you? If you tore away the tourniquet and put yourself in front of it? Could you leave this all behind you? Would you leave this all behind you? Tell me was there ever a way, ever a day, you could have simply walked away or talked your way out of what was changing deep inside you? Rearranging what’s inside you? While you’re lookin’ around for someone to blame, I hear that you been running around dropping my name while the ship you’re on is sinking. What the fuck have you been thinking?

{“Leave It All Behind” … Five Finger Death Punch}

Look, you DO have to forgive them for all the mounds of stinking bullshit on your driveway. ALL OF IT! EVERY PIECE OF IT! If not for them – FOR YOU! And no, I’m not saying that you have to leave your loved ones completely in your dust in order to get to the other side of the mountain. Well, at least not always that is, because, umm, let’s face it – SOMETIMES YOU ACTUALLY DO – but that’s a different story for a totally different time. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, blood may be thicker than water, but if it’s either too thick or too thin it can literally be a death sentence, and life is too short to die of blood diseases that can be treated. At the end of the day, whether it’s driving away and never looking back, or driving away to just a safe enough distance, the very first step to leaving anything behind is simply turning the key, starting the engine, putting your foot on the pedal and DRIVING!

NOVEMBER 1, 2021: “Sorry For Now” …

My Dearest Butterfly:

Today is our anniversary, and I’m watching the wings cut through the clouds. Watching the raindrops blinking red and white. Thinking, “are you back on the ground there with a fire burning in your eyes?” I only halfway apologize. And I’ll be sorry for now that I couldn’t be around. Sometimes things refuse to go the way we planned. Oh I’ll be sorry for now that I couldn’t be around. There will be a day that you will understand. You will understand. After a while you may forget, but just in case the memories cross your mind. You couldn’t know this when I left under the fire angry eyes. I never wanted to say goodbye. So I’ll be sorry for now that I couldn’t be around. Sometimes things refuse to go the way we planned. Oh I’ll be sorry for now that I couldn’t be around. There will be a day that you will understand. You will understand. Yeah, I’ll keep telling Him to pump the bass up. I’ll try to call home when everyone is wide awake. Wish I could switch the time zones – so we can pick the bass up. But you’re passed out by every time I am awake. Best things come to those who wait and it’s time to get pumped on any road you take. Don’t ever have a problem – make no mistake. I can’t wait to for you to come to where I had to go away.

My Dearest Frog:

I’m watching the wings cut through the clouds. Watching the raindrops blinking red and white. Thinking, “are you up there with a fire burning in your eyes?” I only halfway apologize. And I’ll be sorry for now that you couldn’t be around. Sometimes things refuse to go the way we planned. Oh I’ll be sorry for now that you couldn’t be around. I want you to know that I already understand. I already understand. After a while I’ll WON’T forget, but just in case the memories cross my mind. You couldn’t know this when you left under the fire of everyone’s very angry eyes. I never wanted you to have to say goodbye. So I’ll be sorry for now that you couldn’t be around. Sometimes things refuse to go the way we planned. Oh I’ll be sorry for now that you couldn’t be around. There will be a day that they will understand. They will understand. Yeah, keep telling Him to pump the bass up. We always try to reach you where you already are. Switch your time zones – so we can pick the bass up. I just passed out by the time you wake up. Best things come to those who wait, and I promise I’ll be pumped on any road I take. Don’t ever have a problem – make no mistake. I can’t wait to go to where you went away.

I want you to know that I really do promise to be everything I loved most about you, and all the very best things you brought out in me. In between our first hello and our last goodbye was so much love it was unfathomable. You were ours, and only ever ours – and we belonged to YOU! For those reasons, and too many more to count, you will remain the last reigning king of my heart even despite the sickened darkness your demons brought into our lives. I love you Zachariah. Happy Anniversary.

OCTOBER 31, 2021: “Good GOODBYE!” …

No, but seriously though …

“Hi everyone, it’s me, Cat! Yes, I’m on a wicked house cleaning tangent these days, ’cause even Lights in the dark have their limits. BOUNDARIES! They’re what’s for breakfast, and lunch, and dinner, and midnight frigging snacks. I wasted far too many years of my life and far too much of my precious life energy not understanding that the people who were meant to be in my life would only be sticking around if I say so. I am power, grace, and beauty forever rising, and even though I will always love human beings with warm blood running through their veins, holding space in my almost bottomless heart for those who can’t hold the same space for me is just not in my wheelhouse. I gotta shiny Queendom I’m runnin’ over here with just enough people who do hold space for me, and I no longer accept scraps and bullshit from anyone. In the meantime, the happy, smiley, nicest bitch EVER landlord is here and the rent is way past due. So say goodbye and hit the road – pack it up and disappear! You better have some place to go, ’cause you can’t come back around here.

GOOD GOOBYE!

OCTOBER 30, 2021: “The REAL Homecoming Queen” …

… because unless you know where my “homecoming queen” has already been and the battles she’s fought and won by now, you just can’t understand how truly powerful this picture of her really is. But seriously though, someday we’ll sit back and laugh as all those silly haters that just ain’t her and won’t ever be her are choking on the ashes from her fire.

OCTOBER 31, 2021: “… of Blood, Tears, Power & Grace” …

A wise man once said that a wise man once said:

You know, I’ve been asked a couple times why I always write “power and grace” and “love and respect” … It takes two things to make it in this world: Power and grace. Being powerful enough to project and to be assertive and stand for what you stand for, but have it be graceful at the same time, and having gratitude for those that, you know, come in contact with you, and so on and so forth. Love and respect, he said, was the second half of that, because to have power, you have to show those two things ~ love and respect. To have grace, you have to own both of those things ~ love and respect.

{Ivan Moody}

I think I’ve always known that I was the epitome of “Power & Grace“, it just took me a hot minute to figure it out. I’ve never been a fan of being defined by other peoples’ reflections, because God Himself knows that for far too long it was all the words, labels, and black and white BOXES people who never really knew me used to mangle and clip my wings. Thankfully, however, now that I’ve grown into my beautiful skin, I no longer give credence to anyone else’s reflection of me but my own. Yet, as I sit and ponder the magnitude of these two most powerful words, I fall back to these words from one of my favorite songs that I’ve now tweaked to apply and sing to myself the way that I always do:

It was all those days my world’s gone wrong. I’ve screamed until my voice was gone and watched through the tears as everything came crashing down. Slowly panic turned to pain as I awoke to what remained and sifted through the ashes that were left. But buried deep beneath all my broken dreams, I had this hope that out of these ashes beauty would rise and I would dance among the ruins and I would know the joy had come.

I took another breath until now and let the tears come washing down, and when I couldn’t believe, He believed for me and had the signs of spring for me to watch and see! Then I heard it in the distance! It wasn’t too far away! It was the music and the laughter of a wedding and a feast! I could almost feel the hand of God reaching for my face to wipe the tears away and say, “It’s time to make everything new”, and then He made it all new and took my breath away with the power, grace, and beauty that He made of me from out of the ashes.

{“Beauty Will Rise” by Steven Curtis Chapman}

I am truly thankful to see myself through this person’s words, as he’s someone I’ve obviously grown to love and respect for reasons that most people simply wouldn’t understand. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again … he really doesput the phoenix in phoenix“. I mean, the man literally came back from the dead! He, like me, has been “woven in a black and white tapestry sewn with blood and tears”, and I will treasure both this book and his words to me forever.

As and aside, I am thoroughly enjoying “Dirty Poetry” and have been through it cover to cover seven times now. Just as I’d long suspected they’d be, having listened to the messages in his music and heard him speak to his fans, his words are a rabbit hole of his twisted thoughts and dreams. To me, he’s a modern day Kafka, who up until now was the only writer with whom I could truly relate. I’m not gonna lie, I never really thought that anyone could out-Kafkaesque the “Die Verwandlung” creeping through my mind, but damn he’s gone and done it! There are so many pieces of not just me living inside the pages of this book, but as well the pieces of the very few people I’ve truly loved in this world, not the least of which was my husband.

OCTOBER 28, 2021: “Peopling” …

Look, it’s not as though I’m that hard to get along with, it’s just that I’m very extremely particular about who I let into my bubble, and even more particular about the strings I allow to attach to my soul. For those who get it right, being “too close” to me is a veritable wonderland. For those who don’t, umm, maybe not so much, because more so than not, I’ve usually already left the party before I even get there. It still doesn’t change the fact that, INDEED IT IS TRUE, if and when I am truly comfortable with someone, I literally NEVER shut up the eff up!

Am I proud of this either fatal or God given flaw and it’s accompanying elusiveness and silent exits? Hmm. Maybe, maybe not. You see, at this point in the game I’m not even remotely interested in trying to understand all of the ways that I am, because as I’ve said before, some things just aren’t meant to be understood, and my “you don’t ever wanna get too close” personality is one of them. What I do know by now is that indeed I am the consummate INFJ “door slammer”:

INFJ stands for Introversion, Intuition, Feeling, and Judgment. The INFJ is believed to be the rarest of all types, making up only 1-2 percent of the U.S. population — which explains why this personality type frequently feels isolated and misunderstood.”

{“What Is the INFJ Door Slam, and Why Do INFJs Do It? … by Introvert Dear}

Keep in mind that no one ever gets the same me twice. Once I’ve decided that something isn’t working, although I may coexist in the same world and sometimes even the same space with them, the “me” that comes after I’ve realized I’m too close to something that isn’t in my wheelhouse usually doesn’t come with emotion. As you can imagine, this tends to make me seem like a cold and emotionless bitch, and it definitely hasn’t won me any popularity contests.

Trust me when I tell you, my dance card is never full, and hell NO I’m not that girl who is inundated with girls’ nights out or invitations to anything. Rather, I’m that girl who teases the masses with the chance of touching my soul, but then when they try to get too close, I slap there hand away and run for the fucking hills! It is what it is, I am who I am, and I’m pretty damn okay with it. On the rare occasion that I do get included in a social gathering where there are people I truly feel connected to, Jean Claude Van DAMN I’m frigging delightful! “Peopling” either brings out the best in me – OR NOTHING AT ALL – as ZERO interest have I in surface level anything. I’d much rather be “alone, but not lonely” than in an ocean chock full of way too many fish who aren’t really transmitting to my motherboard.

Hi everyone, it’s me, Cat! While I can indeed be overly sensitive, at least I’m in touch with my feelings and allow myself to have them. I suppose I am rather difficult to get to know, because yes I do have WICKED high expectations, but umm, have you met me? I’m a queen, and not only can queens not be friends with everyone, why would they want to anyway? So, with that, congratu-fucking-lations to anyone who’s had the privilege and honor of knowing me, and even more so to the few who ever will. My uber-selective inner sanctum is one of THE best places to GET to be. At the end of the day, although the light from my halo is loving, warm and endearing, it will burn your fucking eyes out if you’re not strong enough to stand near it. Please ONLY bring your A-game … I’ll settle for NOTHING less … I’ll see right your bullshit AND throw it back in your face, ’cause (PS) not only am I not afraid to be alone, I rather much enjoy it. To know me is to love me, but ONLY if you’re lucky!

{JANUARY 31, 2021: “I’m A Freak Of The World“}

STEP RIGHT UP AND ENJOY THE FREAKSHOW – or – DON’T – ’cause either way I’m all set! I no longer feel compelled to apologize for for my stamped and certified, err, “uniqueness”, and all but fucking embrace my very private world and the precious peace that shrouds and protects it. So, with that, there’s the door “people”, and unless we’re gonna do this “peopling” thing for REAL, you might want to run as far away from that door as possible lest it not so ever lovingly hits you in the face! The bottom line is this: The only way anyone will ever be able to understand the secret language of my soul is to know how to read it before I even speak a word. You know, kinda like that time I fell head over heels in love with a man whose very first meaningful conversation with me started with, Umm, do you even own a hairbrush?” That’s the sort of REAL connection that brings out the best in me – NO surface level bullshit necessary, just, “Wow, you look like shit!”

It seems that more and more these days, human beings are merely staring at and sizing each other up with their eyes and not their souls. BEHOLD! It’s the grand illusion of dress up and pretend, where no one is ever really as they seem, and umm, I’m so not down with living a big fake lie anymore. God Himself knows that it took more than four decades for me to not only learn my own secret language, but stop living a life of farce, and trust me when I tell you, this Cat ain’t going backwards!

At the end of the day, only genuine connection can make me feel at home in an unfamiliar place, and now that I’ve realized that my most genuine and valuable connection is right here with good ole me, I guess I’ll just be sticking close to “home” in my whimsical ‘lil Queendom, unless or until there’s anyone else out there who can ignite the energy of my soul with a spark from theirs. Until then, Imma stay up here on the mountain and just watch all the “peopling” going on down below and thanking God that I don’t have to do it. If I’ve learned anything whatsoever in my “Fifty-TWO-Good-To-Be-True” years, it’s that nothing feels as lonely as being in a room full of people that you don’t belong with. Been there. Done that. Peaceful solitude works best for me.

TOO CLOSE

Checking out so soon? How long you been planning this? Is it something that I missed? I really thought that I was breaking through to you. Did you run out of room? You said that you would take the risk, and now you can’t handle it? You took what you can get and now you’re through. I can tell by the look on your face that it’s time for you to make an escape. It’s my mistake. I never listened when you said, “Don’t ever get too close, too close, too close to me. You don’t want to get too close, too close, too close to me. Don’t ever get too close, too close, too close to me. I had to find out – find out for myself. I always knew I’d be the one to take the hit, but I guess I just can’t resist all the mystery surrounding you. I’m so confused. There are just too many twists. I’ll never get away from it. I should’ve known you were too good to be true. I can tell by the look on your face that it’s time for you to make an escape. Why do you keep me at a distance? Why are you always so resistant? Don’t want to wonder any longer – wonder when you’ll say, “Don’t never get too close, too close, too close for me. I guess I’ll have to find out – find out for myself. {Trapt}

OCTOBER 24, 2021: “Who I Am” …

WHO AM I?

I’m Cat Williamson. The REAL Cat Williamson, not the fake one! I’m the Queen of the world who has crossed over to the upside of everything, yet I’m the most wretched but not God-forsaken woman in all the land. I am big. I am small. I am nothing. I am everything. I’m an oxymoron. I’m an APOSTROPHE. I am perfect. I’m am FLAWED! I’m a pebble skipped across a pond who is valueless and valued the same. I truly am power, grace, and beauty rising“. I have the world’s biggest ego and the confidence of a lioness, yet I am humbled by my literal insignificance. Perhaps, however, the most IMPORTANT thing I am is “God’s favorite daughter”, and actually, so are all of you “God’s favorite children”, but yet again, I’ve digressed.

Look at me … I’m really am like the Sun. I’ll blind your eyes and get under your skin then blow out your eardrums with my words. I SPEAK THE TRUTH DAMNIT, love me or hate me, ’cause I don’t really care. Nothing about me is anyone else’s concern, unless I so choose it to be, just as NOTHING anyone thinks about me is mine. I’m the FIRST of me, and the last of me, ’cause there’s never gonna be another one like me, and I’m still the luckiest girl on this planet.

THAT is who I am.

THIS is who I am …

WHO I AM

Look at me, I am the Sun – I’ll blind your eyes, the only one. Look at me, when night sings blues – I’m the only one, yes I’m your muse. Look at me, make no mistake – Fashioned with earth, molded with clay. I’ll tell you how I face the day – LIVE LIFE, RAISE HELL, LEFT NOTHING UNDONE. Who I am? Who am I to you? You know, dammit, I SPEAK THE TRUTH TO YOU! Who I am? Who am I to you? Why can’t I be who I am? Look at me – I’m not like you. I’m number one, not number two. Look at me – a pride and joy. I came to win. I came to destroy! Look at me. Look in my eyes. Heart of a lion. I’ll fight till I die! Life’s too short to expect less. Even when I fall, I get up swinging. Who I am, who am I to you? You know, dammit, I SPEAK THE TRUTH TO YOU! Who I am? Who am I to you? Why can’t I be who I am? Who I am? Who am I to me? You know, dammit, I SPEAK THE TRUTH! You see ho I am! Who am I to me? I just wanna be who I am … {Scott Stapp}

OCTOBER 21, 2021: “Inside Of Me” …

The truth is, I spent more than 40 years living trapped inside my own mind. Then I escaped it, only to find out that it wasn’t so bad in there after all. It just took me a minute to make peace with my own chaos, which as it turns out, had more to do with my environment and not what was “inside my mind”. Once I changed my scenery and the majority of the people in it, I found that my mind is an entire fucking UNIVERSE of beauty, love, creativity, whimsy, empathy, and faith that not everyone could appreciate or handle. Lol. THEIR LOSS! NOT MINE!

Not gonna lie folks, once I made peace with myself and my truly ethereal mind, I stopped trying to run away from it, moved back in to it, took a few pictures down, hung a few back up, and now I rarely ever leave it. Sounds kinda crazy, right? Indeed I know this – but it doesn’t make it not true.

…but loving in hindsight – that won’t work for my life. Let me forget all that went wrong.

Oh, yah, and about that “loving in hindsight not working for my life”? That was old me. New me is okay with whatever, however, and whenever it takes to understand – or NOT understand – why certain things and people happen in my life. After all is said and dont – IT DOESN’T REALLY MATTER! The proverbial shit in life is always gonna hit the fan, but this road I’m on is still rollin’. As long as it takes me “anywhere”, anywhere is better than nowhere, and Imma just figure it all out as I go, just like I always do. I’m not just a Cat, I’m a REAL cat my friends, and cats always land on their feet!

INSIDE OF ME

Always waiting for something. Searching for one thing. And I know it has to be there somewhere. On this show without knowing the way this is going, as
long as it takes me anywhere. There’s life and there’s one dance. There’s fate and there’s one chance to find out who I wanna be, and I know it’s inside of me. I look to the far side. Searching for daylight. Something that is mine, all my own. But loving in hindsight – that won’t work for my life. Let me forget all that went wrong. There’s life and there’s one dance. There’s fate and there’s one chance to find out who I wanna be, and I know it’s inside of me. There’s love and so much more that waits behind that door. There’s so much that I wanna see, and I know it’s inside of me.
{3 Doors Down}

OCTOBER 20, 2021: “The Bucket List Item I Never Knew I Needed” …

Yesterday afternoon, one of my “life partners” of sorts, who has now become a dear friend, called me up and basically insisted that I “find myself a cocktail dress, slap on some make up, and get to downtown Dallas” for a once in a lifetime chance to see an actual living masterpiece, Andrea Bocelli. As I had adamantly planned not to see any post pandemic concerts until it could be Ivan Moody and Five Finger Death Punch, I almost backed out after I’d already agreed to go, because I didn’t want to break the deal I’d made with myself to hold out for Death Punch with both the kids so that hopefully they’d finally get to hear “The Brighter Side Of Grey” live on stage.

In being honest, even as much as I love all genres of music, opera has never really been my thing – but – it was Zack’s, and seeing Bocelli in concert had long been on his Bucket List before he left. Knowing him the way that I did, if he were still alive, we’d have had front row center seats at any cost, because that’s how much he loved Andrea Bocelli. Meanwhile, I did decide to go after all – not for me but more so to honor one of his dreams. I’M SO GLAD I DIDN’T BAIL!

I cried most of the night, all but lost it at Amazing Grace, and I’ll never be the same again after this night. Of note, when Andrea and his daughter sang Ave Maria, my friend turned me and said, “Cat, Zack is here right now. Can’t explain it. I just know it and feel it in my soul. I believe in my heart of hearts that she was right.

Let’s face it – not many people will ever have the chance to see a true “living masterpiece” in concert, and I am firmly convinced that I was very much supposed to be at that performance. Hearing Andrea Bocelli tonight was no different to me than if I had been given the chance to sit down beside Leonardo DaVinci while he was giving birth to the Mona Lisa.

Once again, I am blessed beyond words, thankful beyond thankfulness, and forever changed for the better. How could I have possibly known that within the course of less than 36 hours I’d be adding then scratching off an item from my own Bucket List that I never even knew was meant to be on it? I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, I truly am God’s own favorite daughter and the luckiest queen on the face of this entire planet.

OCTOBER 18, 2021: “Our Battle Symphony” …

To My Son, And My Daughter, And Myself:

Once again, I’ve stolen – ahem – I mean “borrowed” someone else’s words to convey a message I need to convey. So, with that …

We’ve got a long way to go, and a long memory. We’ve been searching for an answer always just out of reach. Blood on the floor. Sirens repeat. We’ve been searching for the courage to face our enemies. When they turn down the lights, we’ll hear our battle symphony – all the world in front of us! If our armor breaks, we’ll fuse it back together. Battle symphony – lease, let’s not give up on ourselves. And our eyes are wide awake for our battle symphony. For our battle symphony. They say that we don’t belong. Say that we should retreat. That we’re marching to the rhythm of a lonesome defeat. But the sound of our voices puts the pain in reverse. No surrender, no illusions, and for better or worse … If we fall – get knocked down – pick ourselves up off the ground. When they turn down the lights, we’ll hear our battle symphony – all the world in front of us! If our armor breaks, we’ll just fuse it back together. Battle symphony. Please, let’s not give up on us. And my eyes are wide awake for our battle symphony.

{Words Adapted by Linkin Park’s “Battle Symphony”}

Okay, that’s all for now. Oh, wait, except for this: Phoenixes don’t fall – WE RISE – and we always stick together, even when we’re flying solo!

I love all three of you! Myself included!

~ Me

OCTOBER 15, 2021: “THIS Me & THAT Me” …

In case you haven’t figured it out by now, I’m an avid “Quora” writer. As such, I recently saw this question posted, to which was my honest answer was THIS:

Once upon a time, I was a train wreck of a woman, mentally ill, with a victim mentality, MUCH too comfortable living in my own toxicity, and far too weak and scared to begin the painful and arduous process of pulling my own damn broken head out of my ass and fighting my way out of the FARCE of a life I was living.

Then something changed … I OPENED UP MY EYES AND TOOK A COLD, HARD LOOK IN THE MIRROR. The person I saw standing there was the girl who was too blame for the beginning of her self destruction. So, I decided to become the beginning of my self belief and QUEENDOM.

While I was “that me”, I ruined a lot of things I loved. I RUINED A LOT OF PEOPLE I LOVED! Way too many to count. Mostly though? I RUINED MYSELF! THEN I WOKE UP! Now I’m “this me”, who is MUCH much better, and although I’m extremely thankful for all the SHIT I put my own self through and all the pain and suffering I endured in the process, I wouldn’t want to be “that me” ever again, and never will.

Hi! My name is The REAL Cat Williamson. I’m a warrior, motivator, and a SURVIVOR! The biggest challenge I have survived is MYSELF. For the record, I’m not “bragging” about all the things and people I ruined. I’m just being honest. Brutal honesty about myself and WITH myself was the first step to becoming “this me”.

DEAR YOUNGER ME

Dear younger me: Where do I start? If I could tell you everything that I have learned so far, then you could be one step ahead of all the painful memories still running thru my head. I wonder how much different things would be. Dear younger me, dear younger me: I cannot decide. Do I give some speech about how to get the most out of your life, or do I go deep and try to change the choices that you’ll make, ’cause they’re choices that made me. Even though I love this crazy life, sometimes I wish it was a smoother ride dear younger me. Dear younger me: If I knew then what I know now, condemnation would’ve had no power. My joy, my pain, would’ve never been my worth. If I knew then what I know now, it would’ve not been hard to figure out what I would’ve changed if I had heard – “Dear younger me: It’s not your fault. You were never meant to carry this beyond the cross. Dear younger me: You are holy. You are righteous. You are one of the redeemed, set apart, a brand new heart – you are free indeed. Every mountain, every valley, thru each heartache you will see that every moment brings you closer to who you were meant to be, dear younger me. {Mercy Me}

OCTOBER 11, 2021: “Let ‘Em Go” …

Fade it out into the light. All these years we never get it right. I need to let it go. I need to let it go. I NEED TO LET IT GO!

‘Cause, sometimes it’s just like that, and guess what? IT’S OKAY! Indeed it is true … “Your life is YOUR life”. You only get one spin around this globe each day my friends, and truth be told, none of us knows when our last spin around is coming. My point being: Life’s too short and precious to let anything or anyone club you down to the ground and steal your fucking light. Just, say, NO! Oh, and one more thing …

NEVER feel bad for “not feeling bad” when the people, places, and sometimes even memories don’t make the final cut. You are allowed to be happy, at peace, and free from the deadweight of all those toxic fronds. Besides, you can’t grow any new leaves without losing the dead ones first. Meanwhile, the garden of your life is patiently waiting for you, and has been all the while, so I say GET TO PRUNING! While you’re busy trimming things down, here’s another one of those songs you can sing to yourself as you’re practicing self love and care and letting some fallen leaves go …

LET IT GO

Wait it out ’til the light. Take a breathe, say good night, but don’t ever go away. Wait around to find the time. Only you can take what’s mine, but don’t ever go away. I’ll be waiting’. I need to let it go. Fade it out into the light. All these years we never get it right. I need to let it go. No more reasons to deny that I believed that you were mine. I need to let it go. I need to let it go. I NEED TO LET IT GO! A chance to change or stay the same. One night with out the blame that’ll never go away. Only you can make it right – to walk away and have no fight – but don’t ever go away. I’ll be waiting. I need to let it go. Fade it out into the light. All these years we never get it right. I need to let it go. I need to let it go. I NEED TO LET IT GO! No more reasons to deny that I believed that you were mine. I NEED TO LET IT GO … {Cavo}

OCTOBER 10, 2021: “That Music Thing” …

When my son was just a teenager, he began sending me songs, often in the wee hours of the morning hours, to let me know what he was feeling inside. Up until that point, because of the trauma he’d experienced in our home as a child, he’d kept his feelings buried and was wholly unable to verbally communicate the depth of his broken emotions.

The first song he ever sent was at age 16, not long after I’d moved out of our family home for the third and final time, just days before I had my nervous breakdown. The song was “Remember Everything” by Five Finger Death Punch. Up until the moment I got that “text heard ’round the world” at 3 o’clock in the morning, I’d never even heard of 5FDP, who of course are now my favorite band.

Lol. And as usual, I’ve digressed yet again …

I’m not gonna lie – that was a ROUGH night for me. If you’ve ever listened to that song, then you probably understand why. Nevertheless, sending me that poignant and cryptic musical message at 3 o’clock in the morning was probably one of the best ways he could have possibly described to me exactly “what he was feeling” in the midst of all the chaos that had become his heart and mind.

Mom, I love you, but I need you to know – I REMEMBER EVERYTHING!

Needless to say, it was an extremely pivotal moment in our all lives during a massive season of change, but hearing those words as they swept through my ears and washed over my own broken heart and mind was a literal five finger death punch through soul. It reminded me of all the things I didn’t do right by him as a mother and all the ways I failed him. It was devastating, but necessary, because as most of us know all too painfully well, sometimes the truth has to hurt us before it can effectively incite change.

Thereafter, if became “a thing” with us, and even to this day he continues to let me know what’s going on in his head and heart with his random musical messages. Although some of the songs and their messages have been heavier than others, and some have been mind-numbingly ethereal, others have just been pure and simple love songs to let me know I’m still his best momma.

Over the years, “that music thing” has morphed into so much more than just “me and him” communicating with each other. These days, it’s about “me and me” as well. I communicate with myself daily through music! Singing “me” love songs is one of my favorite mental wealth hacks. It has now become a powerful way to not only love myself back to life UNCONDITIONALLY, but keep myself loved back to life eternally.

“When The Seasons Change” is one of my life songs, of course by 5FDP, and as such, has made an appearance in this Diary more than a couple of times. It has truly been applicable to all the most important people, places, and seasons of my life, so, yes, I belt it out loud to myself all the time. Sometimes I have to tweak the words to my “love songs” to make them more applicable to me, as in the case below. Lol, in case you haven’t figured it out by now, life here in my Queendom moves to a rhythm of it’s very own, but hey, it’s all good. A queen’s gotta do what a queen’s gotta do … especially when the seasons are changing!

WHEN THE SEASONS CHANGE

There’s a light in ME that tears me down to nothing. There’s an angel in MY eyes. There’s a hope inside THAT I CAN MAKE IT BETTER – I see right through MY disguise. When it rains it pours, and everybody stumbles. I won’t let them bring ME down. There’s a hope in ME that I will die for something. Was there fire in MY eyes? All this pain inside – Will it be this way forever? I can run but I can’t hide. When the seasons change … and I’M in for colder weather – look for ME on the divide … {Five Finger Death Punch}

OCTOBER 8, 2021: “At Home In The Queendom” …

Hi everyone, it’s me – CAT!

So, take a wild guess what the best thing I possess is? If you guessed, “Free reign over the truly divine peace in my soul and the most beautiful Queendom a mortal woman could possibly reign over”, you would be correct!

I mean, don’t get me wrong – GOD owns my soul, and Jesus paid for it’s salvation, but the Holy Spirit brought the kingdom to dwell here right inside my body, which makes ME the safest fortress I’ve ever had, ever will have, and the LUCKIEST queen in the history of mankind! As it turns out, it was me, and only ever me, who my soul was meant to return to. I am my own home, and the fire in my soul is the centerpiece.

I’M MY TRUE HOME.

Wherever I am …

Wherever I go …

I’m the safest place I can be!

I promise I’m not bragging, but it’s SUCH a spectacular Queendom I reign in. Alone, not lonely. Just me and my two best friends, “Jesus and ME”. Yup, I’m a Jesus freak with a divine soul that’s on FIRE, and I wouldn’t want to be any other way. Gotta tell ya … it’s pretty frigging awesome being God’s actual favorite daughter!

OCTOBER 5, 2021: “The Freedom” …

And yet another bittersweet “October 5th” is here. His birthday. At first I was at a loss for what to write about this morning, but after having drafted another “Quora Answer” that I wasn’t sure when I wanted to post, it struck me that TODAY was the day …

WHAT DOES “TRUE FREEDOM” MEAN TO YOU?

To me, true freedom is having made peace with not only his death, but death in general, because most assuredly I say to you: DEATH HAPPENS! No one’s getting out of here alive, and as hard as it is to live on this Earth without our loved ones who have moved on, being able to release them from the mortal shackles they wore (and yes, we ALL wear mortal shackles) is, perhaps, one of the kindest, bravest, and selfless things we can do, not only ourselves, but their dearly departed souls. When a person has reached a point in their life where they no longer suffer through the experience of death, living in the moment becomes second nature, because they live in constant awareness that “the present” is all that really matters.

True freedom is having arrived at place where your happiness and self-worth aren’t derived solely from achieving every pleasure, dream, or wish you’ve ever had, or having every “thing” you thought you needed. It’s closing your eyes at night then waking up the next morning with total clarity and peace in your heart, not always “needing more”, and fully capable of living in each moment as it is.

True freedom is understanding that some things just aren’t meant to be understood, because they’re NOT, and that having blind faith in all the things we can’t know isn’t as scary it seems. Even if we’re wrong about the things we deaf, dumb, and BLINDLY believe, we’re still “halfway right”. As far as I’m concerned, “halfway right” is still a 50/50 odd, and I will gladly bet on it.

Last, but certainly not least, true FREEDOM is finally realizing that YOU are the only mortal person you can count on to survive this game with ’til the end, YOU are worthy of being your own best friend, biggest fan, and most loyal supporter, and YOU should be the greatest love story of your life! That’s when you’ve found your real home, by the way, and for the record, none of this “freedom”, or the peace of mind that comes with it, costs a single dime. Money is good to have, don’t get me wrong, but ZERO amounts of money can buy these freedoms for you. Only YOU can secure them for yourself.

I’m so thankful that I have achieved true freedom. I’ll close my eyes tonight knowing in my heart that I did the very best I could in everything I did, and that I’ve left no stone unturned. If I don’t wake up tomorrow? Imma be alright, ’cause I know what’s coming next and I’m not afraid. Now that I think of it? I think I’m starting to understand why I’m so fascinated by birds and anything with wings. Not only can they fly, but even more so than that, they always find the right place to call home. They’re beautiful, and free, and independent spirits, and anywhere they land can be their home. I guess in many ways I am like a bird. Sometimes I just watch them, because maybe I’m a little envious of all the ways they are free than I can only dream of. Then again, that’s probably how some people feel about me, so they watch me with envy, too, because I am free in all of the ways that they can only dream of. Maybe someday they will learn to just let go and GET HOME like me.

Happy Birthday and Godspeed Zachariah. Here’s hoping you are “Home” enjoying your eternal FREEDOM. I miss you, will always love you, and yes, you are still forgiven.

FREEDOM OF THE SEA

Standing on the shoreline, looking out to sea at oceans of Your hopes for me, just beyond my reach. I’ve been here on this island for way too many years, a prisoner of my comfort, a slave to my own fears. Doubt is saying, “got to stay”. Faith is saying, “sail away”! I know it’s safe here on the shore, but freedom is worth dying for. Liberation comes to those who hear the truth and sail with you. I’ll go where You are calling me. I’ll be what You meant me to be. I know the risk is real, but I wanna feel the freedom of the sea! With eyes to the horizon, mist against my face, I’ll leave behind this island in Your abounding grace. With Your word as my compass, I’ll chase my destiny. For I know the words of Your will can set my spirit free. Doubt is saying, “got to stay”, but I’m taking up the anchor! Faith is saying, “sail away”, and I’m heading for the deep! {Phillips, Craig & Dean}

OCTOBER 3, 2021: “I Cannot Say Enough!” …

Dear God:

Hi, it’s me again! Just a quick note on this beautiful October morning to say …

Thank you.

For everything.

No, but seriously …

FOR EVERYTHING!

I’m not quite sure why You felt that I deserved to have so much, but, You did, and, I do, and I cannot say enough what a thankful queen I truly am.

I LOVE YOU.

~ “Your Favorite Daughter”

(PS) Damn You’re a talented artist! These two? MAGNIFIQUE! They really are my “power and grace”. Okay, I’m done now!

OCTOBER 3, 2021: “A Very Special Message” …

So, I have a very special message for all of you from both the dearly departed and very much loved Chester Bennington, who, too, shared the same fate as my husband – AND – from God Himself. It’s pretty easy to decipher – so – here it goes …

When you feel you’re alone – cut off from this cruel world – your instincts telling you to run. Listen to your heart. Those angel voices. They’ll see you to you – they’ll be your guide back home. When life leaves us blind – LOVE KEEPS US KIND. It keeps us kind. When you suffered it all, and your spirit is breaking. You’re growing desperate from the fight – REMEMBER YOUR LOVED – and you always will be. This melody will always bring you right back home. When life leaves us blind – LOVE KEEPS US KIND. It keeps us kind.

{Chester Bennington … Linkin’ Park}

And now a message from ME. It’s also pretty easy to decipher – so – here it goes:

Chin Up!

Knuckles Out!

Don’t let all the darkness in this world snuff out your beautiful light and make you lose faith in the power of kindness and love.

OCTOBER 1, 2021: “I’ve Got His Six!” …

… because sometimes you do have to die inside a little in order to be reborn into the strongest, wisest, most authentic version of yourself so you can leave this world a little better than you found it. For the record, and for those of you who care to know, this guy really did die once upon a time, only to be reborn into the living phoenix he truly is. Soul of my soul is what Ivan Moody is to me, and I’ll forever be grateful for all the ways both his music and his “phoenix” changed my life for the better.

Hi everyone, it’s me, Cat! I’m Fifty-TWO-Good-To-Be-True, a divine apostrophe, a giant mystery, and myself a living phoenix. Good GRIEF, how in actual Heaven will any of you people ever be able to make a single bit of sense out of me? Not gonna lie, seeing this gift I had made for one of my favorite ghosts of all resting on that spot behind him literally made my day. I’ve kinda got Ivan’s six. I’VE TOTALLY GOT HIS SIX!

Phoenixes don’t fall – WE RISE – and we always stick together, even when we’re flying solo!

OCTOBER 1, 2021: “Hoovery McHooverson” …

228. The exact number of days since the last time Hoovery McHooverson, a/k/a the actual devil incarnate, reached out to but never heard back from me in yet another failed attempt to feed his little man ego. All I can do is laugh:

Hey you! I was just thumbing through my text stream and realized that my text to you this morning was green, and I’m like “did you block me” and then I went straight to your voicemail when calling, so … did you block me before or after I sent you that text? And hey, I would REALLY value a conversation. Umm, I’m kind of at a loss. I got your texts, and I know your grappling with some things, but I’d really enjoy and value the opportunity to visit with you, so, please call me. I hope you’re well. Thinking about you. Bye bye.

You were just “thumbing through your text stream”, huh? No, little McHoovy Hoove, you were checking your old supply! We all know that little narcissist boys just don’t like being bored or alone, and I Jean Claude Van DAMN bet that you’d “REALLY value a conversation”? What’s the matter McHoovery? Are ya feeling unadored? Well now, ain’t that a kick in the go take a dirt nap ya purely evil little bastard!

ZERO amounts of manipulation or charming ever again shall there be, and ZERO are the chances that I’ll be rooked back into your snake pit. Wow! I guess I really do win, ’cause you very much McLOSE! Now go on and slither back to that empty chasm you call yourself and kinda McHoovy GO FUCK YOURSELF! And now, in closing, I once again say this …

Unaffected. Unimpressed. Laughing my ass off yet again. This little man just doesn’t get it! With that, if you know this Diary at all, you know there’s a song for almost every chapter. Nope. Not this time. Music is my therapy. My happy place. MY EVERYTHING! All that remains for “this thing” that was once in my life are these five final words: STARVE LITTLE NARCISSIST! STARVE!

{“Starving A Narcissist“}

SEPTEMBER 29, 2021: “I Know” …

Today is one of those days when my own words wouldn’t do a single bit justice to the message I’m trying to convey. Except, that is, to say this: The best day of my life so far really was that day I finally understood that there are some things I will never need to understand, and even more things I don’t care to “know”. Once I stopped trying to figure all this stuff out and trying to outthink all the things I cannot possibly ever fathom, I became as deaf, dumb, and blind as a bat, but as wise as the wisest sage. “All I know” is “what I know“. The rest of the details I’m leaving to Him.

Where do I begin with what to say? I’ve played this conversation in my head so many times. I’m certainly not claiming to know everything, but what I do will save your life. I know, I know that God is able. I know, I know that He still reigns. I know, I know that Love has found a way. No matter what it is you’re going through – even if you think you’re far beyond where hope can see. I know there is a hand that’s reaching out for you – because He did the same for me. I know, I know that God is able. I know, I know that He still reigns. I know, I know that Love has found a way. It wasn’t that long ago when my own world fell apart, and everything inside of me said to let go … I found myself crying out to the One who knows my heart … and holding tight to the few things that I know. I know …

{“I Know” ~ Mercy Me}

SEPTEMBER 26, 2021: “Heavy” …

… that moment he sends you yet another one of his cryptic music messages the day after suffering yet another “heavy” loss, and you’re only response after finally listening to the “heavy” song he sent you is this:

I just finally listened to this song. I’d never heard it before, believe it or not. I wanted to wait until I was in a calmer headspace from everything that happened this weekend. Now I’m crying.

Son, I know you don’t like your mind right now, but remember that all these “problems” are stacking up for something bigger than either of us will ever understand. They seem “unnecessary”, but believe it or not, they are very much “necessary”. I wish I could slow things down too sometimes, but we CAN’T let go. Chester said it best – “there’s comfort in the panic”. I know it’s fucking shitty when things don’t go the way we plan, but you will NEVER understand “the Light” until you’ve made peace with the panic in the dark.

I used to drive my OWN self crazy. Have you met me? I’M YOUR MOTHER! Nothing that you, me, or your sister have had to rise above WAS ever “about us”. Then again, it was. It’s an oxymoron, and it’s so fucking complicated, but then again, not so much. You’ll escape the gravity, just like I have, when you finally learn to stop overthinking the things that aren’t meant to be understood. Everything we go through is meant to change us. We can’t change this shitty ass world, Christian. We can only change ourselves. That’s when we become pebbles in our own little ocean of change.

All I ask of you is to do the best that you can, “just for today”, cut yourself some breaks, and stop giving yourself hell for no reason. You are MY son, no one else’s, and you are better than that monster that lives inside your head. Tell him to go fuck off. That’s what I did. I told that biotch dragon in my brain to go suck on a tailpipe. May she rest in peace. I love you kiddo.

… and just like that, I can’t help but feel that he is getting so close to bringing himself full circle that I hardly fucking stand it. He really is his mother’s son, and if anyone can rise above the mess we all kinda made for him, it’s him. He knows. HE KNOWS! He knows he’s carrying to much of everything on his shoulders. The guilt. The shame. The remorse. THE PAST! I will not rest until I see both of my kids made whole! This weight of this world is way too fucking heavy for anyone to have to carry on their shoulders, now he just needs to KNOW how to let it go.

Dear God:

Hi there, it’s me again, your favorite daughter EVER! I’m asking you please. JUST PLEASE! Please help him set down the piles of SHIT that are weighing him down, so he can start letting go of all the things that are out of his control and holding on to all the things that are. He’s right there on the cusp of every amazing thing You had planned for him in the first place. Please, I’m begging you. PLEASE.

Don’t you remember that day in the hospital? It was 29 years ago this December. That was the day I was struggling between the two names we’d picked out for him: “Wolfgang” or “Christian?” I went with “Christian”, even though at the time You and I weren’t quite on the same page. I mean, I knew that You were real, but I had NO idea who You really were, how much You truly loved me, or that You were already not only a part of my daily existence, but had long been working on my long-term survival plan.

Not a single day has passed since that day that I fell in love with You that I haven’t fully believed that someday he would grow into his beautiful name, and especially over these years of watching him struggle and toil. Of course, You already know that “he’s his mother’s son”, and I suppose that’s the reason You gave him to me and no other mother. Can’t it please just be time now? I love you, and I trust You, but I’m just getting so tired of watching him wander alone inside his own head the way that I used to do. Isn’t time for him to come home, “to himself”, and start living his life as an apostrophe? I don’t mean to sound like a whiner, but could probably do without having to lose another man I love to the darkness inside his own mind. Just sayin’.

HEAVY

I don’t like my mind right now – stacking up problems that are so unnecessary. Wish that I could slow things down – I wanna let go, but there’s comfort in the panic. And I drive myself crazy thinking everything’s about me. Yeah, I drive myself crazy, ’cause I can’t escape the gravity. I’m holding on. Why is everything so heavy? I’m holding on to so much more than I can carry. I keep dragging around what’s bringing me down. If I just let go, I’d be set free. Holding on … Why is everything so heavy? You say that I’m paranoid, but I’m pretty sure the world is out to get me. It’s not like I make the choice to let my mind stay so fucking messy. I know I’m not the center of the Universe, but you keep spinning ’round me just the same. I’m holding on … Why is everything so heavy? If I just let go, I’d be set free. {Linkin’ Park}

SEPTEMBER 26, 2021: “We’re Not Gonna Take It!” …

Just a friendly reminder …

… that there’s only so much being taken for granted that people will take. Sooner or later, even the weakest objects of someone’s disregard will bolt, and let me tell you WHY …

We’re living in a time when more and more people are getting themselves into therapy. Mental health conversations are coming out of the darkness and finding their way to the light, and “mental wealth” is fast becoming the NEW BLACK! Thank you JESUS for that!

Meanwhile, the inhumane treatment of others by toxic wasteland excuses of “people” are not being tolerated or swept under the rugs of oblivion and non-confrontation any longer. “Boundaries” are the flavor of the day, people are sick to DEATH of being shit on, and assholes are being bitch-slapped by the slamming doors of KARMA left and right.

Bottom line here? Be careful who you take for granted! You just never know who’s got a really great therapist and a “mental wealth support team” on speed dial full time making damn good and sure they know they’re self-worth and value. “Forgive them, but FORGET THEM!” It’s the best medicine EVER, and more people are taking it than you know!

AND REMEMBER …

While you’re out there doing you’re very best to show up for all the others, don’t forget to show up for YOU! Be patient, be kind, be gracious, and forgiving, but DON’T be so stupid that you let anything and anyone slide. Erect strong boundaries and protect them at all cost, even if it means walking away! The one you should be most loyal to is YOU!

DELETE, REMOVE, ERASE, UNFOLLOW, UNFRIEND, DISCONNECT AND BLOCK anything and anyone who drains your peace or happiness. Not just on social media, IN REAL LIFE TOO! Life is too short to spend your time or energy on people who don’t see your value or who treat you like a revolving door.

SEPTEMBER 23, 2021: “The First Of You” …

Hi everyone! It’s me. JUST ME! Nope, I’m not perfect, but Jean Claude Van DAMN I’m still me! I screw stuff up ALL the damn time, but I’m still me. I’ve said good things, bad things, right things, wrong things, and really, really, REALLY stupid things, but at the end of the day, guess who said ’em? ME! I’d be lying if I said I’m proud of every single thing I’ve ever done, because nope – I’M AM NOT – but hey, it’s still ME that ever did ’em. There’s my dark side, and my light side, and my ridiculously, ridiculous “out there” side, but all those sides are, ME! I’m a work in progress every minute of every day, and the end result of all of that work will still, just, be, ME!

But guess what the really cool part about “being me” is? I’m the FIRST of me, not the second, not the last – I’M THE FIRST! I’m not a carbon copy, I cannot be reproduced, besides who in the hell would want to, but yes, I’M THE FIRST OF ME! No one else can do that. No one else can be that. I find that to be spectacular!

I hear a voice inside. It’s grown into a scream. I’m not the next of them. I am the first of me. ‘Cause I can’t live the lie. I am just what you see. I’m not the next of them. I am the first of me.

As it turns out, “FAKE” really IS the new “REAL”, and hell to the NO, that won’t work for me. Being an original is always the best thing to do, although sometimes it takes some work to learn how to be ourselves, and only ourselves. The reward is worth the struggle! If you haven’t already tried this “being me” thing (oh, wait, I mean, “being YOU”), you should. Oh, and by the way, this Hoobastank song is one of the favorites of my life, one of the most underrated songs ever, and everyone should have to memorize these words about five seconds after they learn to talk. But hey, what do I know, right? Just thought I’d share!

THE FIRST OF ME

I must make a choice – a tough decision. Listen to my voice – should I give in to temptation? Admiration? One leads to myself – the other someone else – just an empty shell. Just an empty shell. It’s harder than it seems when you’re told that all your hopes and dreams are yours to hold if you just give them what’s expected – something they can sell or put upon a shelf. But I am not for sale. I am not for sale. I hear a voice inside. It’s grown into a scream. I’m not the next of them – I am the first of me. ‘Cause I can’t live the lie. I am just what you see. I’m not the next of them – I am the first of me. If I can’t refuse the price they offer, I am sure to lose and I will suffer. Sell my soul to make a profit? All I have to do is make believe it’s true. That’s something I can’t do. That’s something I can’t do. So when the waiting’s done and it’s time to face the truth. You know you’re good enough deep down inside of you. You’ve finally woken up if only just to prove you are born to lead the way and be the first of you. {Hoobastank}

SEPTEMBER 20, 2021: “As They Are” …

I ran across a conversation amongst some parents on social media the other day, the subject being, “how they were dealing with the fact that their children didn’t turn out as they’d hoped”. It was perplexing, actually, and after reading the various insights, I had a moment for pause. So, I asked myself the same question. The thing is, I couldn’t really answer that question.

I WAS BLESSED WITH THREE BABIES.

One of them is with her Father in Heaven already, which of course is not what I’d “hoped” for her. Although I was only blessed with her physical presence for a handful of fleeting hours, there have been moments I’ve actually thanked God for getting her out of this sometimes wretched mortal world the rest of us are shackled to sooner rather than later. Let’s be honest folks – regardless of the hope, joy, beauty and laughter to be found in this temporary place we call home, “humanity” is not for the faint of heart, and it takes an immense amount of courage, faith, and even suffering to weather it.

So, yes, I’m thankful that she never had to endure the gauntlet of simply existing. I know where she is now. She is safe, loved, and treasured beyond comprehension by a Love even greater than mine, and for that I am ever grateful. I fully believe that when I myself get to the brighter side of all this grey, she’ll be there waiting for me right beside my husband, who too is eternally safe and free from the abundant suffering he knew here on Earth.

Then there are the two still with me. If I’ve learned anything in my journey thus far, it’s that as their mother, nothing is more important for their mental wealth and than my unconditional love and acceptance of them just as they are, and just as they aren’t.

Due in large part to the extreme dysfunction and toxicity of my childhood, wherein my parents (who were also raised in dysfunctional and toxic homes) perpetuated the “works and deeds” based system of parenting bequeathed to each of them cyclically, I spent the first 39 years of my life void of a reflection in the mirror. “Love, affection, praise, and reward” were earned, not freely given, and even the smallest perceived failure or disappointment in their eyes would often cost me everything.

I cannot tell you how many times they “washed their hands of me” over the years for screwing things up and falling short of their expectations. I was guilted and shamed for “not being good” too many times to count, which eventually cost me my sanity, and almost cost me my life. Meanwhile, here I am. I’ve made peace with my past, my present, and my future, and am fully connected back to that elusive younger me who was missing from the mirror all those years.

This is how I deal with the fact that my children aren’t turning out “as I’d hoped”: I DON’T, BECAUSE THEY ARE! Their mental health and happiness are all I ever hope for either of them. Their lives are their lives, and the only people they need to be accountable to when setting their personal achievement bars is THEMSELVES! No matter how high or low they set them, they will never be failures in my eyes. If they want to grow up and sell lemonade from a bus, so be it, as long as they’re selling the BEST damn lemonade they can possibly sell and they sleep peacefully at night after doing so.

My kids don’t owe me a single thing – not even love and respect. Do they love and respect me? Indeed, I think they do. Yet as oxymoronical as it seems, both love and respect are the consequence of free will and cannot be “commanded”. My babies are not “extensions of me” – they’re their own, autonomous beings. I want them to love and respect me because they want to love and respect me – not because I impose it. They are people, not machines. Their thoughts and feelings are their own. The best I can do is to keep freely giving what I “hope” to receive in return, regardless of their reciprocation.

There is nothing they can do or say that will keep me from being proud of them, and all I ever “ask” for is their very best in all they do, that they grow from their mistakes, learn from all of mine, and treat themselves and others kindly and with grace. Neither of them are perfect, and each has had some challenges courtesy of their own dysfunctional childhood and me, their dear old mom. It took me a minute to pull my head out of my own ass, get the help I needed to become WHOLE, and stop acting like the consummate victim. But I did, and they know it, and we are all in this thing together.

At the end of the day, my job as their mom will be a true success if they learn to see themselves in their mirrors as the impeccably flawed masterpieces they are – lemonade stands and all. My son is a KING in the making, and my daughter a warrior QUEEN just like me. All three of us are battle born SURVIVORS who’ve “gotten” to learn the hard way that nothing here matters without true and unconditional love and acceptance, which they will always have from their mom, and we ALL have from our God. I will always love them as they are – nothing more, nothing less …

SEPTEMBER 17, 2021: “A Love Note To ME!” …

DEAR “ME”:

Today is your birthday – “Fifty-TWO-Good-To-True”! So, what better way to celebrate yourself and the insanely beautiful life you still get to live, despite your very best attempts to ever so passively, yet ever so aggressively, murder yourself for too many years to count, than to read yourself this “love letter” to the precious body you get to occupy?

When you saw this woman’s words posted on social media recently, they leveled you in the most bittersweet ways. Since that day, you’ve read them to yourself over and over and over again, and knowing you the way I do, I suspect you’ll continue to do so for the remainder of your journey here on Earth. They’re impeccable and powerful to us both!

So, with that, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU once again, thank you JESUS! Amen! You’re “The Real Cat Williamson: Warrior. Motivator. SURVIVOR; CREATURE SLAYING QUEEN!

Love … ME

To anyone reading this, yes, this is one of those songs that has impacted my life in such a profound way that it’s earned a repost in my Diary. Only this time I’ve changed up the words:

Never again! Never give in! Never give in! I wouldn’t have wished that on just anyone, but shee seemed to share my impulse. I wouldn’t have taken that from just anyone, but she seemed to like the result. So I connected the dots and I told her when to stop. I chose to keep on going rather and NOT be something that I’m not. We were creatures of habit. We couldn’t live without it. We didn’t have to answer to anyone. We were chasing the rabbit, like creatures of habit, and no one else knew where we were coming from. And everything has changed, ’cause I didn’t fucking run away. There’s no more need to panic, ’cause it’s no longer tragic.

{ Adapted from “Creatures” ~ by Shinedown}

If you or someone you know is struggling with an addiction of any sort, PLEASE pick up your sword and fight your way out of that darkness. Both you AND YOUR BODY deserve so much fucking better than “creatures” trying to destroy you.

SEPTEMBER 15, 2021: “With Love From My Dark Side” …

… because just as sure as this Marianne Williamson quote that has long been a favorite of mine is so very true, it only recently dawned on me that it applies to ourselves as well. So, I tweaked it up a bit, “Real Cat” style …

But why would we even want to embrace our “dark side”? I believe it’s our subconscious need for self-love, acceptance, and connection to our higher power. For me? That “higher power” is God. Look, even the brightest stars can’t shine without the black of night, so sometimes you have to go DEEP into the abyss to find out what you’re really made of and come back out carrying the torch for others.

Everybody’s got a dark side. Do you love me? Can you love mine?

I am so beyond thankful for the very small handful of people who have indeed been brave enough to love me unconditionally, even despite my very dark side, not the least of whom is God Himself. I’m even more thankful that I have reached a place in my journey where I too am able to truly make peace with and embrace other people’s dark side” if that is what I need to do. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again … Zachariah Williamson went ZERO, DARK, HOUR in the months before he left. It’s the sobering, tragic truth, and the things he did to me and my daughter would literally blow your mind. Yes, I have truly forgiven him, and yes, I still feel love for him despite the devastating horror his “dark side” brought into our lives in the end.

SEPTEMBER 12, 2021: “Who’s They?” …

The “Quora Question”:

Are humans supposed to be normal or abnormal?

Umm, so I believe humans are “supposed” to be the most authentic version of “what and who they are”, whether that be “normal”, or “abnormal”. As and aside, I personally believe that both those words, “normal” and “abnormal”, are much too subjective to be used as a baseline for humanity. Who exactly sets the standard, and what exactly entitled them to do so?

WHO’S “THEY”?

They say we need to be a certain way to fit the mold, or so they say, but who’s they? How can we pretend to care and bend because we’re told we’re not okay? Who’s they? We can’t go wrong when we all stand tall and we sing the same song. We’ll find it hard not to get along. La da da da da da. La da da da da da. La da da da da da. We’ll find it hard not to sing along. {Daughtry}

In my journey, it’s God who’s “they”. He sets the standard for everything “human”, and even that is subjective, as the personal lens through which I see, understand, and relate to Him is based solely on my unique life experiences thus far. For as much as I believe my conscious is the mode through which God speaks directly to me, I haven’t yet had the chance to sit down and have a conversation with Him about everything He intended to be “standard” for His creation.

So, with that, I really don’t think there’s a viable answer to this question. What’s “normal” to some may be “abnormal” to others. Thus, the human experience, for which I say to “they” …

SEPTEMBER 9, 2021: “Isn’t That Crazy?” …

How often do you think about your death, or even death in general? Does it scare you? Consume you? Fill you with anguish and despair? That’s understandable, of course, but it’s not the way for me.

I can honestly say that I don’t spend much time thinking about death at all, and certainly not my own, because I have made the choice to just live in every moment. Not yesterday. Not tomorrow. Not even five minutes from now. For all I know, an airplane could come crashing through my window while I’m writing this and Jean Claude Van DAMN I’m outta here!

I have had to learn the very hard way that “Death Is Nothing At All“. Three nails, a crown, and a cross literally hammered that in for me. Sufficed to say, while I definitely do not fear it, I’m not exactly excited about it, because I still have so many things I want to do. But indeed, it’s inevitable, and I made peace with that a long time ago. If I don’t wake up tomorrow, and today was my last trip around the Sun, I leave here knowing I’ve done my best in every thing, and I’m ready, God forbid.

I have an unbreakable bond with the God I know created me and what is waiting for me on “The Brighter Side Of Grey“. So, I blatantly choose to live a life of joy, hope, and gratitude for all that was, all that is, and all that may never be. It’s that “Crazy Grandma Catblind faith theory of mine that keeps my eyes on the prize! I truly believe that one of the worst things that can become a human soul is not embracing the sobering reality that we, are going, TO DIE! Those of us who are lucky enough to finally reach this crossroad understand that we must always

… because guess what folks? WE ARE! Leave no stone unturned and waste no time worrying about the inevitable. There’s literally no time like the present to start squeezing every ounce of everything you were meant to savor in this temporary life. Now, I’m not trying to tell you that we should all jump up and down with joy, like, “Whoopee! I’m gonna kick it”! I’m saying that with a little faith, and a compass set to eternity, the best part of all of this is yet to come. As for me? I’ve been called “crazy” by so many people, for so many reasons, at so many points in my life, at this point I embrace it! Being called “crazy” for not being afraid to die? Yah. I’ll wear that little badge with honor!

CRAZY

Why I would I spend my life longing for the day that it would end? Why would I spend my time pointing to another man? Isn’t that crazy? How can I find hope in dying, with promises unseen? How can I learn Your way is better than everything I’m taught to be? Isn’t that crazy? I have not been called to the wisdom of this world, but to a God who’s calling out to me. And even though the world may think I’m losing touch with reality, it would be crazy to choose this world over eternity. And if I boast, let me boast of filthy rags made clean. And if I glory, let me glory in my Savior’s suffering. Isn’t that crazy? And as I live this daily life, I trust you for everything, and I will only take a step when I feel You leading me. Isn’t that crazy? {Mercy Me}