Desperation … That crumbling moment when I will say or do anything, so as not to receive the natural, yet now unacceptable, consequences.

It is the unveiled realization that I have set my standards well below my own tolerance. In the guise of this awareness I am willing to barter. And it is not that I even want what is being offered. It is, that I don’t want what life has so justly prepared to thrust upon me.

In that moment I will acquiesce to any request, thinking of consequences later.

I am only seeking time, empathy, or money. And often all three—at once. I am not in the market for what you proffer, but I know how to let you believe I am.

I am a master of manipulation. Even my own thinking can frighten me. I press it like dough. I push, roll, and pull until it has taken my chosen shape. Even then, more kneading is required; my conniving instincts run like a leaking faucet. One I have never found interest in repairing. It was always about what I was to get, never about what I was to give.

If there was a little ‘give’ in there, it was only to lead you along. I liked having you owe me. It gave me a pseudo-sense of power. The high point of my existence was pretending I was someone I was not. I possessed two primary modes of escape: more manipulation and the altering my mind. I did neither successfully—over time.

Desperation … That moment that offered me another moment. A splinter of time that ached as I experienced it.

What was this? What did I just feel?

So alien.
So awkward.
Now it lingered.

Could it be that I can choose something different than I have chosen before? Is that even possible? Is this what this feeling is saying to me?

Desperation has yielded nothing of value, except this strange moment.

This was not to be my last, but my first, true encounter with this foreign friend.

Only hindsight could reveal its true beauty …

The anomaly in time … where I humbly greeted Courage.

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10 Responses to “Desperation

  • Yes, courage is demanded from us each day anew… How I can identify with what you write! I have been trying to keep my head above waters of late and your post could not have fallen on a better time 🙂

    • It rarely amazes me when I find myself at this moment, again and again. Thankfully it is no longer over a drink. And thankfully I am aware of my motives, so my conniving gets nipped in the bud more quickly. Good we can support one another. 🙂

      • It is nice to know you feel too that even though it happens again & again it is never with the previous intensity.
        That is why I treasure interaction with people of similar life experiences.

  • Thanks for that beautiful and eloquently written reminder!

    The gift of desperation! I literally about fell out of my chair the first time I heard that spoken. I used to do many of the same manipulative things as well. I truly thought I was selfless. I had that, I’m not much but I’m all I think of syndrome. I’d lie,lie, lie to get my way or what I wanted. It wasn’t until that pivotal moment where I had lost all morals, values, spirituality, who Clairey was, everything, that I surrendered. As you said it wasn’t until after the fact, that I too found the beauty in the desperation.

    My life today, on day 2,135, is a miracle!

    • Clairey, Thank you for the words of resonance. I like what you said too. I still catch myself ‘thinking’ I am being selfless. The tempering of my ego, my life’s work. And thank you too for commenting. Makes me happy to see new faces. with love, Lisa

  • Wow. This is such a powerful and moving post. I felt it to my soul.

    Thank you so much for this.


    • Sherry, I love that you felt this. Thank you for the sweet words. I feel your writing too. It is nice to have a few close friends to share you soul. Lots of love, Lisa

  • Lots of layers here, Lisa. I read this last night and then again today, and it was like two different posts, as I came away with different things.

    As for the manipulation, I am there with you. I loved what you said about having someone “owe”. What a power trip. I would scrawl that in my invisible ledger and keep track of all these little things and lord it over others. I put myself in positions that made it nearly impossible for me to give without getting. It was always a one way street – with my needs being the cul-de-sac at the end. Me, me, me. And as you mentioned, conniving was a skill, and sometimes I didn’t even know I was utilizing it, but somehow, there was a manipulation happening. And why stop this when I keep getting what I want, when I want it?

    And yet, things still fell apart until that desperation showed itself for a fleeting moment. Ego wouldn’t allow it to be fostered or unveiled more, but there it was. And that’s when I was able to see the light come in just a bit and realize that I needed help. Desperation was, as you said, so foreign. Or at least what it yielded for a moment. But it was enough. Enough to see where I was and who I was and who I wasn’t.

    Thank you for this, Lisa – such a deep and rewarding read 🙂


  • You write about that moment in time, and I am transported back to when I was given that gift of desperation. I could describe it for you as if it was happening to me right now… time of day, sights, sounds, smells. I hope I never forget it, because that moment of desperation has opened up a whole new life for me, a life for which I am so grateful.

    Absolute brilliance here, Lisa, I am in awe!

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