Mother Mary

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Have you ever wanted to jump into the mind of a schizophrenic? Here's your chance. Based on my mother's journals and my memories, this is her story of descending into insanity. My mother, Mary Alice Dahl, died under strange circumstances in 2006. She lived and died under the dust cloud of various physical and mental illnesses. Was it schizophrenia? Split personality disorder? Borderline personality disorder? The prolonged effects of sexual abuse? Derangement due to an array of prescription drugs? I -- we, my remaining family -- still have no answers. This book is partially based on the journals she kept as madness ravaged her mind and she slogged through her final days on this earth. The remainder is based in letters and my own, quite subjective, interpretation of her life. As a whole, it is an attempt to find out what happened to my mother, as horrific as that was. Please read it as a poem; do not judge between "fiction" and "non-fiction" -- just read and we'll try to figure out what happened to her. Thanks.

Drama / Poetry
Chris Dahl
4.3 3 reviews
Age Rating:

Chapter 1


At 3:14 a.m. Friday morning, I got the call that my mother, Mary K----, passed on. At peace now, she was afflicted for a long time by many things.The official cause is pneumonia …

Burial to follow

Mary Alice

white. my gloves are whitemy hands are foldedi’m stillstill smilingnext to bernie the little girlmy sisterin her hair are the pink bows i wanted and i cried when mother put them in her hair and said that i couldn’t always get everything i wanted all thetime so i had to have the white bows that i wore to school last friday and got dirty with my hands on the playground when jimmy galvin pushed me down

now they’re gray and not white the gray and not the pink ones in bernie’s the little girl they called my sisterthe one who my father held while i stood there crying and squeezing his legshe was wrapped in a white blanket with a pink dress and i keep cryingthat’s my daddythat’s my daddythat’s my daddy and my mother grabs me by the arm and the skin starts to burn and her hot breath in my ear says that i better start behaving or she’ll take me down into the basement like before and that i didn’t want that did i

i went still

but that’s my daddy with the camera in his hand that has the flashbulb on top of it that’s my daddy with the brown hat and the long coat smiling and telling us to smileit’s coldmy legs are bare and coldi want to shiverbut my mother is next to himreminding us to smiletelling us to keep our hands folded and our white gloves cleanwe’re going to church and you have to stay cleanwhite gloves

smile my father says

we smile me and the girl they call my sister

the flashbulb snaps where my father was standing and i see halos dancing all around him around his brown hataround his square jaw and over his brown eyesdancing

we walk down the hill me holding one hand and the girl they call my sister holding the other

that’s my daddy

we’re going to church the train tracks running on rusted iron over us rattle and sway and the concrete under my feet rumbles and the iron grate that goes underground to hell where they keep all the people with the black marks on their white white white souls shoots steamy air around us that smells like and old dead cat that was by the garbage cansone night in the alley behind our building and i can’t breathe right anymorei want to be still but we’re going to church and we have to keep movingbut i want to stop and go home back to my side of the room and tell my father i don’t feel well so he’ll bring me ginger ale right out of the can and saltine crackers from the closet behind the kitchen door and he’ll put a cold rag on my forehead and just tell me to stay still just to be quiet not to worry your mother so much just to stay on my side of the room and be goodjust be good and still for a while and everything will be fine he’ll tell me and then he’ll leave me to look out the window into the sun until the light goes hazy and my eyes cross and get so still people come up and talk to me and i can hear but don’t movemy father can tap my face and i can hear his voicehe can splash me with cold water and istay stilli can hear my mother sayingdear goddear lord what’s with this girli can hear her saying our father who art in heaven hallowed be thy nameand my father holds me limp over his shoulder and i hear the water from the faucet hitting the bottom of the tubthy kingdom come thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven i hear my mother saying

then i feel my father holding me limp in his arms as he puts me in the bath


i see the light in the ceiling a bare light bulb with a chain they pull and it clicks on but i can’t say it to them

i hear the water splashing against water and it starts to cover my body


my father splashes it over me and my father says i’m shaking

i’m shaking

and my mother give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our sins as we forgive those who trespass against us

and the little girl bernie my sister they call her comes in and says what’s the matter with mary what’s the matter with maryis she going to dieis mary going to diewhy won’t mary movewhy won’t mary talkwhat’s wrong with mary

my father says nothing nothing’s wrongdon’t worryshe’s fineeverything’s fineeverything’s always finego out and sit with your grandmothergo out and have some tea with your grandmother

and my mother says hail mary full of grace the lord is with thee blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb jesus christ

she’s not coming around this time my father says and he pours water over the crown of my head and i feel the cold run down through my hair and the ridge of my eyes and the bridge of my nose and over my lips and i see him over me my fatherwith the lightbulb hanging from the plaster ceiling behind his head and i look at the light until dots of light dance all around him

mary he says mary can you hear me can you hear mecan you hear me

give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses

yes daddy i say i can hear you i can hear you daddy and the lights still dancing flashing in front of him and the light blind white behind him

he puts his arms deep into the water beneath me and pulls me up out of the water and holds me against the muscles of his chest and says thank god thank godthank godyou gave me quite a scarethank god

and my mother says she’ll be the death of me with her spells she’ll be the death of me and she gets up off her knees and my father is holding me tight to his chest when i heard the beads hit the tile floor and ting ting ting on the floor

and my mother says damn it i wore out the rosary praying for that girl the string brokewatch out you don’t slip on those beads

my father takes me into my side of the room and asks me if i can hear him i’m still and i nod my head slightlyi’m still againhe asks me if i can stand and i stand very still and he takes off my night gown and i stand there cold from the water on the front that faces my father and warm from the light that comes in through the window on the back of me and he dries me off gently with a warm toweland puts on one of his long t-shirtsi can smell the soap from the basement and musk of his colognethe shirt is warm from his chest and his back

that’s my daddy …

The Journals

Here goes my program to sanity – mental confusion is a horrible thing. I need to be quiet and not share – I crossed a boundary yesterday asking Ashley about Lonnie because she works for him.I do have an unhealthy dependence to use the phone.Replace it with something –

Writing and praying are good. You’ll drive everyone crazy if you don’t get it under control.It’s part of depression and it really sucks.I have no one to call on a regular basis during the am and have to work on that.The phone calls are because I miss spending time with L.

He needs a lot of space and I intend to give it to him. I guess I’m still angry and don’t know how to get it all out.

Set up a meeting and keep your mind busy and your anxiety down.

I hate the way I behave sometimes and must face dependency. It’s insane.

It’s all rather insane – every 3-4 weeks – L gets crazy – I get crazy from the 15th to the 25th.I don’t get days like today.My vision crossed last night all old stuff is coming back.There are two “me’s”The one that I know from the past and the one stressed out who didn’t sleep last night and really wants to go to Blackberry Way and get all her stuff.My car has an electrical problem, a gas leak, idle problem and next week I must meet the mediator who does not return my calls and I never got paid! What does L think? I’m just going to fade into the wood work?I hate this codependency crap and all the old stuff that comes out with the sciatic walk.There’s always emotional issues.I wonder if there’s a Mercury problem?No, not really, but there’s Candida.I want to rule the world.There’s the Mary whom everybody knows and loves in one way and Maire whom even I don’t know right now.L sent a ridiculous letter yesterday – sign at 4% -- with whom?Turn off the phone except for Barney and deduct from my checks for past telephone calls.My ears are ringing like crazy today and I’m hot and I have spots.I hate this shit.Big time.


My day off until the next battle.

Very little Candida behavior – ordering stuff/phone calls/or just need to be connected –

“There are no mistakes” ---

Perry is great to me and I love his energy.

I need to be organized and I’m living dysfunctionally in car and part house.

I love being alone but I get fearful when I eat apricots and figs because the Candida takes over.

L is going to suffer from cancer from ill will, toxins, drinking, hypoglycemia et.c etc.

Let him have the $$ -- he’ll get his “come uppins” in the end

I sent back 5 pkgs. with Leanne and that’s fine. The only thing I can partially work on is phone stuff and that is out of control at times.

I am

Here to stay

Mary Alice

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