“ZUGUNRUHE ‘…I think we are well advised to keep on nodding terms with the people we used to be, whether we find them attractive company or not…Remember what it was to be me: that is always the point.’ Joan Didion, On Keeping a Notebook.

I let the four innocuous-looking pills, two on each side of my mouth between my gums and cheeks, dissolve into chalky metallic bitterness. Felt my tongue swell and my teeth involuntarily bite into it’s sides. I waited.

I read articles from Outside magazine. I read three or four chapters of the novel manuscript from a friend, the title a mysterious link and nod to a word for Migration. Finally, the pain began. The residue from the pills were still granular evidence in my throat. The Dramamine I had taken an hour before was starting its hazy alchemy between my eyes and temples. I held the warm Pendleton mug, the first gift from him about this time last year, onto my cramping organs.

Watching the sunlight dance across the wooden floor, I thought about what this will feel like after it is over. What will I take away from this day? I categorically surveyed the new words and information absorbed from the articles and books of the afternoon. I did this, I now see, to focus instead of what I was dispelling from my insides. I could mentally replace what I had repelled.

The Joan Didion documentary: The Center Will Not Hold, trudged and soared with me through the days’ waning evening hours. Somehow, it is the ripple of manifested themes that seem to both surprise and swirl familiarly. I see now also that one cannot understand something until after it had passed. That to look at it from a close observation keeps it just out of focus. The only way out is through.” —Jillian


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content warning: rape, sexual abuse, suicide attempts, self harm "I am a Texan. I am a daughter, aunt, niece, wife and most importantly mother. I am a Texan mom. I am a Caucasian white female who was