Tag Archives: abuse

Hi, My Toe Tag Says Daphne


When there is nothing to separate the night from the day

No borders in the ether

No fences about our cells

No boundaries for our skin


We are lost

No sun

No moon



They disappear

Only void



Everything the same

Words without meaning

Form without shape


When we only know the lack of walls

The terror of free falling

We don’t even wonder

Are those lipstick marks or bruises?


There is no distinction

Only blind attempts

Empty phrases

Hollow veins


We don’t realize

We are all in the morgue

Shuffling about

In dull hospital gowns

Bare feet and teeth unbrushed

Pretending to have a pulse



by Daphne Shadows



Filed under Not that Kind of Poetry

Something Unlikely

In the recesses of my soul, I fear it’s unlikely for me to find love.

A whole, healthy love.

An accepting, understanding love.

Someone who not only understands me, knows me, but wants me to be in their lives, every day. Someone who finds me important.

Bereft of abuse of any sort.

This is horribly vulnerable and I hate it. But it’s true.




And I think it is sad.

Sad that I am so jaded, so hopeless when it comes to some things.

I think it is sad that I am so filled with such emptiness that I don’t know where to look inside myself to find myself.

I feel I need to peal open the skin on my rib cage, crack open my ribs, and peer inside, hoping there will be a beating heart, to begin with. But beyond that, hoping I’ll find a small, scared, soul hiding somewhere behind an organ or too. Waiting to be found.

Waiting to be accepted.


Isn’t that just so human?

It’s not something I obsess about.

It’s not something I even think about too often.

I’m certainly not one of those gals who searches for a man like her life depends on it. I never thought about my wedding. Never fantasized about walking down the aisle, all doe eyed, and plastered in white.

For one, I don’t want to wear white on my wedding day, whenever or if that happens.

And for two, I’ve always been too busy fantasizing about monsters, creatures that could jar me into danger and maddening enjoyment of life.

I’ve never been the kind of gal who had to have twenty friends, surrounded by people all the time, making her feel wanted and loved. I’m not particularly needy. In fact, I need my space.


So it isn’t a crazy unhealthy thing.

It simply is. In the back of my mind. Floating along with all those other thoughts or beliefs, I guess, that don’t bother me too often. Or affect me all that often either.

There are simply some things I’m not going to poke at until I’ve worked out where I am right now.




What I’m talking about is the human desire to be loved on a level that only happens when one falls in love.

A knowing and an accepting.


I think it’s what we are; human.

We want that other human who we can be 100% human around and still be loved.


Did I mention this is terribly vulnerable?


I don’t know how Rara does it!



This is post #2 in Rara’s #Somethingist challenge. For my original post (which explains things), click  here. And then join the challenge! ;D


Filed under Stream of Consciousness


I saw a movie recently. I’m not going to tell you which movie, as that has nothing to do with this post. What does have something to do with this post, is that the main character was a scavenger and every time someone commented on that, they used the word ‘scavenger’ as if it were dirty (the despicable kind of dirty). As if she went about eating people’s unborn babies, ripping them right out of pregnant ladies’ wombs.

This struck me as odd as I sat there in the dark and watched the movie. (and stuffed my face full of nachos)

Yes, there are bad scavengers. But just like everything else on planet earth, I think there are good scavengers.

I think, as usual, we only see it in a gross light.

I have a healthy respect for some sorts of scavengers. I see them in a different light. I suppose I see the word as defined differently too then.


Sometimes scavengers are the only ones who survived the abuse, the chaos, the pain, the wars. Plucking almost rotted food and lost hopes from the fingers of corpses as they make their way down the deserted roads, cloaked in darkness of night and certainty that something, somewhere, at some time is going to turn their life around. Or rather, they’re going to be there at the right time and change their lives themselves.

I see scavengers as sometimes empty and simply trying to survive.

I see creatures that feed off dried blood and who have ebony wings and pluck at dead people’s eyes before flying off, cawing at whoever gets close.


I am a horror and fantasy writer.

And I live in a different world than a lot of others around me, I’m finding.

It gives me something a little darker and something a little brighter. And that has nothing to do with being a writer.


I see a scavenger as the forgotten, the lost, those who walk along the rims of awareness, barely there to most. They live in fear of death, they live in fear of life.

Someone left to themselves, fumbling in the dark with no memory, tugging at the strands of fate, begging their own soul to shake lose something of use.

I feel like a scavenger. Picking at the pieces of a life I could have but hold myself back from.


Because it takes a while for your eyes to adjust to the light after you’ve lived in darkness.




Filed under Stream of Consciousness

Hate and Deprive

Do you ever just start questioning everything in your life?


Why do I do this?

Why did I think that?

Why do I waste my time on that?

How dare I take time to do that – and anyway, why do I?

What’s the point in this?

Yada, yada, yada.

You get the point.


Recently- okay that’s a lie.

For  a while now, I’ve been questioning myself on why on earth I think it’s okay for me to take time out of my day to read a book – something I enjoy – *gasp*!

How dare I!

How selfish!


Self hate is a pretty strong accusation so for the sake of you guys not living inside my head and knowing everything that goes on there, we’re just going to go with, I’ve been depriving myself of pretty much everything I enjoy.


Because I’d feel guilty, bad, wrong, selfish, like a horrible person, if I spent any time taking care of myself.

It’s like I’m depriving myself of love.

Not allowing myself to be happy or do anything simply because I’d like to.




But I’m only skimming the surface just yet, so let’s keep it to what I’ve discovered so far.


Last week, I was in a lot of pain (medical issues, don’t worry, I’m not missing any limbs), and it hurt to lie down in bed, even though I was exhausted.

I’m lying there, praying for sleep, wishing against wish that I could wink out of consciousness and fall onto the pillow of being unaware.

And the thought pops into my head –

Why not grab my book, go in the kitchen and read?


At this point, even my “hate and deprive yourself” programming couldn’t break into my pain induced thoughts, and so I got up quietly, grabbed the book I’d been sipping (because I hadn’t really sat down and read in quite a while) and went into the living room/kitchen, turned on the light, sat against the wall, and read.

For a few hours.

At about one in the morning, I broke my awareness away from my book and looked at the clock. Deciding to go to bed, I realized I felt better. Happier. Calmer.


For a few hours I’d ignored the pain, hadn’t even been aware of it.

For a few hours I’d not felt like an emotional wreck. I’d felt kinda good, actually.

And then it clicked.

All the questioning I’d been doing – why do I allow myself to selfishly waste time and read a book when I could be working on something I need to get done? Never mind that I couldn’t sleep. Never mind that I wasn’t being productive lying in bed and becoming more and more miserable as sleep evaded me. Why did I think it was okay to take time to do something that would simply make me happy?


Because it makes me happy.

It gives me some peace.

Reading allows me to escape reality for a little while. It takes me somewhere else.

I read for the love of stories. For the amazing thing that happens when I disappear into another world.




And it made me realize that even on small levels like this, I’ve been punishing myself for doing anything that makes me happy.

Now, I’m sure I’ve said that before. But I’ve blurred the lines of boundaries and my rights as a human being so badly that saying that hasn’t really sunk in, made any sense.

Last week, it made sense. I went from, “uh, yeah, sure, I’m aware that I do that” to “oh, I accept that I’ve been doing this, it’s bad, and I need and want to stop if I want to be happy and healthy”.


Did this magically make my bad habit of feeling guilty and hating on myself if I wanted to/did read for a little while?

No, of course not.

I’m a human. Humans are stubborn and it’s hard to break habits, good or bad.

But at least I’m working on it now.

And anytime that not so little voice tells me that I’m horrible for taking time to read – I smother it!


Here’s for continued vigilance to that end…




(***A note to my readers. If I haven’t responded to your comments yet, rest assured – I will. I have read and I love your comments!)


Filed under Stream of Consciousness

I Have Issues but So Do You

Some people don’t like this subject, shy away from it or balk at the idea.

“No, I don’t have issues, everyone is simply different, unique, that’s not bad, not an issue, no one is weird.” They say.

You have issues. I have issues, everyone has issues. YES they make us different and unique and NO it’s nothing to be ashamed of, not something bad.

But YES YOU HAVE ISSUES. Everyone does.


Finding out about the why you want to do something is more important than finding out how.

– Benny Hsu


If I didn’t have issues, I wouldn’t have the pen last name “Shadows” which I get compliments on all the time. Yes, I did just brag. But that’s because I love my pen name. It’s something I created and dammit, I’m gonna be happy about it.

But how does having issues do this for me? If I didn’t have daddy issues, I wouldn’t want my own last name, a name that stands for me, is me. Shadows is me, plain and simple. It doesn’t stand for any of the men who called themselves my father. It’s mine. 100% If I didn’t want issues, I wouldn’t have wanted it.









If I didn’t have issues, I wouldn’t have a quirky/strange/sometimes morbid sense of humor that enables me to make people smile. I’d not have the same temperament or respect for laughter. I wouldn’t place such importance on other human beings, their feelings, their reasonings, their hidden pain.


I wouldn’t love the poignant, celebrate it, for I know it is wondrous and beautiful even when it stays as it is, but can also lead to such happiness.


I would not have a brain-mouth filter. I’d say everything I felt. And heaven have mercy people would run for the hills, hate me, cry, and – ironically, wonder what my issue was. Or they’d just put me in the psyche ward, but whatever. I’d have fun flying in my pretty coat. 😉


I wouldn’t respect myself. At. All. My issues have made me stronger, and I know it. I will not be ashamed of it.


If I didn’t have issues, I wouldn’t be able to understand and befriend and draw inspiration from others who have issues. That’d mean all the awesome friends I have right now? Nope, wouldn’t have befriended them. All the deep, thought provoking books I’ve read? They wouldn’t’ make it through my thick skull, wouldn’t have any real meaning for me.


Your issues? They wouldn’t mean a thing to me.


I wouldn’t like weird music or deranged stories.


I wouldn’t continue to care less if people judge me. I wouldn’t continue to believe judging others isn’t right.


I wouldn’t love thrift stores. I wouldn’t value 50 cents.


If I didn’t have issues, I wouldn’t get pissed off when someone abuses animals. I wouldn’t feed my puppy eggs when I have an egg sandwich. I wouldn’t care.


If I didn’t have issues, I never would have picked up a book to get away from reality and been sucked in. I wouldn’t have fantasized about escaping to another reality with creatures who drink blood and kill with ease. I wouldn’t have become a writer. I never would have found my passion.


stockvault-dramatic-landscape127093If I didn’t have issues, I . Would. Not. Be. Me. I wouldn’t have gone through what I have, tasted of different pains and failures and hatred for self. I wouldn’t have fought to find myself. I wouldn’t continue to figure out why I do the things I do, why I feel the things I do.

We all have issues, we all have personality and emotional weaknesses. We all have things happen to us that give us weaknesses that we’ll never get over, but instead have to live with. But those things make us who we are. How we deal with them, live with them or get over them, let them build us up, change and mold us, strengthen us.

And I’m talking about issues here, not bunnies and rainbows and sweet puppies who eat lollipops and sneeze cotton candy. Uh-uh. I’m talking issues. Real ones. Ones that hurt, ones that scar, ones that make you question everything and hate life and feel lost and wonder what you did to deserve this. Issues hurt, they create truths you’d rather not hear about. But they’re nothing to be ashamed of. Work through them and be who you are. Issues and all.


He who wrestles with us strengthens our nerves and sharpens our skill.  Our antagonist is our helper.

-Edmund Burke


I’m not telling you to go shout your character flaws to the masses, only stop being ashamed of them, stop ignoring them. All your weakness can be turned to strengths, or perks, if you will.

Don’t hate your issues or try and wish them away.  Something beautiful will come of your pain. If you let it.


If people didn’t have issues, there wouldn’t be success stories about weight loss or survivors of all kinds of emotional and physical abuse. There wouldn’t be that one author who you read because their stores mean something to you, make you feel better about yourself.

I know I’m probably kicking a dead horse here, but ya’ll know one of my favorite series’ is Anita Blake by Laurell K Hamilton. Do you think she wrote Anita’s character without having issues in her own life?









Sherrilyn Kenyon, a popular paranormal romance author was abused as a child. Do you think she has issues? They’ve made her who she is. And she’s a beautiful person. In one of her blog posts she said,

“You can’t look at anyone and tell what they’ve been through. Ever. The deepest scars are never the ones that mark our skin. They are the ones that mar our souls. Unknown and unseen by everyone, but felt deeply by those of us who bear them and we can never fully escape their wrath.

Like the characters in our hearts, they whisper in our ears as a constant companion. They tell us we’re not good enough. Smart enough. Talented enough. That we don’t deserve our dream. That we’re stupid. Fat. Ugly. Those voices are the hardest thing to let go of. Twice as hard when critics and others, especially those who claim to be well meaning, give an exterior voice to them.

Other people say that when the going gets tough, the tough get going. What they never talk about is finding the courage inside you to pursue a dream when it seems like even heaven itself has conspired to keep it from you. When obstacle after obstacle is not only thrown at you, but dropped on top of you with such force that you feel like Wile E. Coyote. But notice, Wile E. never once stopped pursuing the Road Runner. No matter how badly squashed he was, he always dusted himself off and kept going after his dream.”

If you don’t believe your issues help you, read the rest of her article, here.

I don’t read any of her books, but she is an amazing woman.


“Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars.

– Kalil Gibran


We all have issues. Get over it and start loving it.


What about you would be different (for the worse) if you didn’t have the issues specific to you?


Filed under Stream of Consciousness