Solitary Confinement

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Alone with my Thoughts

I’m not my worst enemy

I’m a prisoner, an unwilling hostage

Confined by thoughts of despair and solitude

Incarcerated in the darkness of my regressive mind

Images cloud my tired mind

Some strikingly clear, others somewhat hazy

Slivered light – Dawn signals a new day

Not enough to fend off my mind’s tricks

The mildew of indescribable sadness

Fills my nostrils, making me gag

My heart aches, but no tears fall

No-one hears the silent screams of my misery

Dampness clings to my cheeks

Tears have escaped, during my sleep

I’m alone. No Love to cover me

My vivid imagination my only hope of freedom

Seated on the slimy mattress

I contemplate jumping into the chasm

At least there I will be free

Thoughts…they won’t be able to harm me

There is no prison warden

With an evil grin, nor the keys

Only I have the means to leave

I need strength to fight the loneliness



Octavio Paz wisely said:

(Photo found on

As I approach my 33rd birthday this Saturday, I’m reminded just how “profound this fact of the human condition” is in my life. Cousin Lorian passed a comment on Friday night at Mom’s birthday dinner, “We’re going to have to dust you off; you’re on the shelf now!” Normally I would simply let it fly over my head, but like I said in my previous post, I do hear the loud ding-dong-tick-tock of Big Ben in my brain and belly. And yes, I know and believe that God is still writing my love story, but sometimes the loneliness of not having my own “someone special” does get to me. I find myself almost resenting my coupled friends because they have something I don’t – and I keep wondering why God has chosen them to be, for lack of better expression, happier than me. Some days I feel so incredibly alone, despite having wonderful parents, extended family and some of the most loyal, true friends a girl could ask for. I am loved by so many, except that “special one”.

I’ve met some wonderful potential “special ones”, but I know in my heart, romantic relationships with them would not go the distance. The majority of them are at least a decade older than I am, some being divorced with kids already half my age, some having never been married, but with zero ambition…

I’ve fancied someone for quite some time, someone who could be the “another” that I could realize myself in, and he knows it, despite his pretence of obliviousness. In many ways, he is what my heart desires – well mannered, ambitious, gentle, caring, fun, stable, focused, attractive, diligent…the list can go on for quite a while…but for reasons unbeknownst to me, nothing more than a semi-stable friendship has evolved. I say semi-stable, because we’ve made progress as friends, but it is as if he is afraid of really showing who he is…fear, perhaps? Trust issues? Closeted skeletons? I’m naturally an open person, and (much to my shock and horror), some people are intimated by this. Mom has always told me to be who I am and if people can’t deal with me the way I am, it’s their loss, not mine. But, like I’ve said before, I have this deep-rooted yearning to be liked.

Mom, Elizabeth and I were having coffee at a local franchise on Saturday and there was a couple with their son (about eleven or so), and a little baby girl. She was so beautiful, so precious, so perfect, so…something I long for. And I don’t only mean the baby…I mean the whole family unit…MY family unit.

Time will tell, I suppose… until then, I’ll just have to continue to hope that soon it will be my turn.

Let Us Never Forget…

I remember exactly where I was when I got the news that there was a terrorist attack taking place in the United States of America.

It was just after midday here in South Africa when I got a call from my boss, telling me to put on the little fuzzy Black and White TV in his office. “A plane has just flown into one of the twin towers in New York.” I thought I’d heard wrong, but curiosity got the better of me.  There, right before my eyes, on the snowy, staticky TV were images of a plane crashing into a tall building.  I was still considering that the hype was possibly unnecessary when I saw the second plane.  I was stunned.  I continued to listen to the TV, and for good measure switched the radio on too.  I even phoned Mom, telling her to check the satellite channels on and let me know what else was being said.

A while after the telephone rang and it was Mom telling me that I plane had flown into the Pentagon.  Now, my US geography is really not good, but I did know that the Pentagon is in Washington DC, and that was where one of my best friends from school, Nerina, was au-pairing.  I also knew that Nerina travelled quite a bit with her host family.  Soon my mind was racing – was she safe?  What if she’d been on one of those planes?  I emailed, tried to phone, but with no success.  I suspected the worst, not for one minute thinking that as a result of this terrible situation, telephone lines would be jammed.

About a week later I heard from her – she was safe.  She’d actually been outside playing with the kids when she’d heard the plane fly over.  I got chills.

Eleven years has passed, but let us never forget.  The Americans that died that day were regular people, just like you and me.  They had regular jobs, they had families, pets, mortgages.  Let us instead honour their memory by being silent for a moment.  America, I salute you!  Your resolve is inspiring!  Your bravery and remembrance give me hope.


Love, Trust, Harm…

Apologies readers, if this post is a bit disjointed, but I wanted to get my thoughts down, and I’m extremely pressed for time!

In Shakespeare’s All’s Well That Ends Well, he tells the reader:

“Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none.”

A colleague of mine has this quotation taped to her PC monitor and it is a permanent BBM status. The other day I was chatting to Steve at the gym and he too said, “Trust few people…”

I understand the concept, but I simply can’t trust a select few, despite having experienced a form of ultimate betrayal myself  (and yes, it has bitten me in the arse more times than I care to admit). My boss even told me in my personnel evaluation two weeks ago, that I need to be meaner, because people take advantage of my good nature and tackle me emotionally. I was a little hurt by what he’d said, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized, he is right. The reason people take advantage of my good nature is simple – I trust them too easily, and beyond that, I trust them to do the right thing. Taking advantage of people isn’t right, so I trust them not to do it… I know it sounds like I’m talking in circles, but I’m sure you get the point.

That brings me to another story. For the sake of anonymity, I am not going to mention names, but refer to the people involved as Jack and Sarah.

I became friends with Jack and Sarah through a mutual friend. Sarah and I immediately hit it off. She was a bit of a rebel and part of me envies that because I’ve always been a goody-two-shoes. Jack came across as aloof, but as time passed, he defrosted a bit. As we got to know each other better, I’d learned that Sarah and Jack have been together for over a decade, and, while not married, they have two beautiful children. Sarah was a stay-at-home-mom; Jack a successful businessman.

One day during my recuperative period (after my diagnosis with depression), Sarah called asking me to join her for a drive in the country to go and visit her mum. I went and she shared some things about her past that I found shocking. She’d had a long problem with drug abuse, cocaine being her drug of choice. She had already been with Jack at the time, but left him and her (at that time) only child because of the spell of the drugs. Jack had to support his child, and not knowing what to do, as his job takes him away from home quite often, he put the child in the care of his parents, in another town. He fought tooth and nail to help Sarah, and eventually, she got clean. She continued her rhetoric, telling me that between then and getting back together with Jack, she’d been in a relationship with a much younger guy. I sat wondering how a person can love someone, yet not trust them enough to help them during one of the darkest times of their life. She’d fallen pregnant shortly after getting back together with Jack and this time it was for keeps. She was so emphatic in her statement that I couldn’t help but trust her.  She was my friend, she’d paid her dues, she wouldn’t lie to me, surely?

Four years down the line I bumped into another mutual friend of Sarah and I who told me that she and Jack aren’t together anymore. She’d apparently fallen prey to the wrong crowd again. I felt so sad – strangely though, not for Sarah, who I’d forged a strong bond with that day (she trusted me enough to share her dark secret), but for her two beautiful children and Jack, who has seen to it that she has never wanted for anything, a few rules notwithstanding.

About a month ago, during a window-shopping session, I heard someone whistle at me. I was not amused, but I turned around to see Jack standing there, a shadow of his former self. I told him I’d heard that things at home were a bit stormy and he told me the whole story. Sarah’s moved out – and he wants to help her (he loves her so much), but he doesn’t know if she wants to be helped. I can’t begin to imagine how he feels – having his trust betrayed for a second time. I wonder if she ever stopped to consider how her behaviour will influence her children and their ability to trust authority figures, when they can’t even count on their own mother to provide their most fundamental needs.

It was Jack’s birthday yesterday and I sent a simple text, saying, “Hey Jack, wishing you a great birthday. All the best for the year ahead!”

He replied, thanking me for remembering.

Part of me can’t help but wonder, if we love someone so much, do we stupidly trust them not to harm us? Or do we trust them, knowing they most likely will hurt or betray us, hoping that love will conquer all in the end and that there will be no long-term harm done?

Almost 33 and 33 lb Lighter

I’ve done it!  I’ve finally lost 15 Kg (or for those of you metric measurers, 33 lb).  

It has been a long journey, although honestly, not as hard as I expected it to be.  I think it is going to be harder to maintain motivation levels now that I know the battle is won.  

 Here are before, during and after photos

This photo was taken in August last year.  I hadn’t started gym yet, and at the time the photo was taken, I had no desire to exercise either.  I was actually quite comfortable in my little (well large), round body.  I was very happy (evident from the smile on my face) when this photo was taken – I was with my mom and Aunty Carol for a girls’ weekend in Cape Town.  On this specific day, a special friend, Jakes, joined us for a visit to BouldersBeach (it’s a sanctuary for African Penguins).  Now as I look at it, I am actually appalled that I let myself go to the extent I did. 


This photo was taken about two weeks after I joined the gym.  A few friends and I took a hike to the local dam.  (FLTR:  Ilayna, Liza, Elizabeth and I.)  Everything is board-walked, but it is downhill all the way to the dam and a very steep uphill all the way back!  I was huffing and puffing my lungs out by the time we got back to the car.  


In November last year I was invited to a Moulin Rouge evening at a gallery owned by a friend.  By then I hadn’t lost much, but my face does seem slightly less round in this photo 🙂


As time progressed a number of people who also go to the gym, but whom I don’t know from Joe (or Josephine) Soap would approach me and tell me that they’ve noticed the change, even though I couldn’t really see a difference, I could feel it on my clothes.  Every second month, there would be an improvement on my fitness evaluation and I felt so incredibly proud.  I couldn’t wait to get home and share my stats on Facebook.

I had my most recent evaluation this past Wednesday – in some areas I showed an improvement, in others a regression, but all things considered (being away for a week and not able to gym, and being booked off sick for always three weeks with the damn flu), I did damn well. In two months time I turn 33, and my next evaluation will be round then too.  But as I am now, don’t I look damn good? 


I’m feeling a great deal more confident and enjoying the fun of shopping for clothes that highlight the new, slimmer me.  My mental attitude has changed a great deal too – I feel a lot more positive about life and I’m seeing the beauty in the small things that are so often taken for granted, like this morning’s sunrise. 




I woke up on Sunday morning, opened the blinds and smiled with relief when I saw the blue skies because I wanted to take a solitary nature walk, to connect with a part of myself that I miss.


(Photo from saidaonline)

Alas, the weather has turned foul, so my plans were shelved for the moment.

I had had some friends round the night before for a small get together.  We had a few laughs and when everyone had left and I was doing the last of the dishes, I suddenly felt like someone had ripped my heart out.  Just.  Like.  That.  I waited until everyone had let me know they’d arrived home safely and I crawled into bed.  Horrid dreams plagued me all night.  I was awake at five am again…

I had my morning shower and put on some Lady Antebellum – it’s great Sunday music.  The strangest thing happened when All We’d Ever Needed started playing – I was overwhelmed by a flood of tears and a gut-wrenching yearning…for someone.  The question is who?  Some days being alone really gets to me; it makes my heart ache so badly. My folks got home from a weekend away and we went out for lunch to a local steak house called Cattle Baron.  Elizabeth joined us, as did Aunty Carol and Uncle Barry.  Lunch was divine, as were some shooters…but even more scrumptious was our waiter, a tall, dark haired, blue eyed god called G.T.  The old folks left and Elizabeth and I stayed behind, drinking coffee – but G.T I’m sure knew we stuck around to just perv over him.

After I got home, the Sunday blues grabbed me again, so I forced myself to write something – I have had no inspiration for quite a while now and many people notice that I’m devouring books.  What they don’t know is that as long as I’m reading, I’m not writing much.  I read three novels last week…


A simple tune drowns out the white noise

But it doesn’t stop the raging storm

Waves of emotion crash over my rocky heart

Changing its exterior with each swell

A deep, insatiable yearning sets in

Tears blur my vision

The melody continues to taunt me

Rubbing my solitude in my face

Taking pleasure in my heartache

Evil voices laugh in my head

Making me doubt my worthiness

I wonder if you see what I see

Is that why you keep your distance?

I know you’ve noticed me

Yet you keep me at arm’s length

Or do I just blend into the background?

The yearning to be part of your life

Devours my mind

Day and Night

Dawn and Dusk

Through my soft sobs

I wipe my tears

The yearning isn’t gone, but the ditty is finished

I have to carry on, face the day…and not lose hope.