My Whole Expanse I Cannot See…

I formulate infinity stored deep inside of me…

Feb 11

I’m not brave

Category: Life

Almost daily sometimes, I hear that I’m brave, or an inspiration. “Inspirational” is subjective, I can’t really argue with how I affect people. If something I write stirs something good, I’ll take it. If me riding around town with a little plastic tube in my throat helps someone do something they’re afraid of, great. I can’t tell people how to feel.

The thing is though, I’m not brave. I’m just not. I’m full of fear, and flaws, and damage. I fuck up all the time. I’m scared of being lonely, and scared that anyone I get close to will leave me because they might not like what I am, so I often push them away first. I’ve been known to enjoy liquor way too much when I get too uneasy. Two summers ago, I was doing fuckin’ vodka shots for brunch. I don’t do that stuff now, but I did, and it wasn’t brave. I have to get a fresh tube in my throat every five weeks, and the way I handle it is knowing that I’ll get amazing drugs for the procedure. Drugs to make me sleep through the hard part, and drugs to kill the pain and the nervous when I wake up. That’s definitely not brave. Nothing about this paragraph is brave.

I don’t see myself as brave, I’m just as fucked up and screwed up as anybody.


10 Comments so far

  1. Annie February 11th, 2010 4:54 pm

    Subjective, I guess… but it was your words that inspired me to be brave. Not the fact you’re ‘riding around town with a tube in your throat’. You told me fighting through fear to the other side can have amazing results. That was one of the most inspiring things that anyone has said to me. Maybe the timing of your words was key to what I needed to hear at that particular moment – but still – it meant something wonderful to me. I know I’ve told you this already. I’m probably going to tell you this again. So there.

  2. Steph February 11th, 2010 5:07 pm

    You are too brave.

    How many other people are slaving away trying to crank out a poem or prose and too chicken shit to ever show another living soul? That takes guts my friend.

    You have courage. Own it.

  3. Christy February 11th, 2010 8:31 pm

    Having a disease doesn’t make you brave, but writing this post is the brave thing. Being able to look deep into the motives behind your thoughts and actions, to really dig into them and analyze yourself, to accept the bad and disappointing, but also the GOOD, that takes serious mental stamina and emotional maturity. And then, to share that with the world, well, that’s something else entirely! 🙂
    Hang in there. The world is better because you’re in it!

  4. josh February 12th, 2010 2:33 am

    Baring yourself to a questionable world is brave.

    Also, there are pictures of your nipples on the internet. I don’t know if that’s still considered brave, but it was when we were kids.

  5. Dani February 12th, 2010 6:05 pm

    hey..u should get on comp at home isnt working and im on someone elses rite now..Im on facebook for a lilbit..

  6. Liz February 14th, 2010 1:45 am

    what you are is human

  7. kelly February 23rd, 2010 12:36 pm

    i think you are absolutely amazing. you are probably one of the bravest people i know. everyone has their own personal struggles and i commend you for dealing with yours the way you do. i recently watched your video “Escape” and found it very inspirational and stunning. i love all of your tattoos. i hope you are having a good day 🙂

  8. Savannah March 14th, 2010 4:22 pm

    I’m going to echo what someone else said, you aren’t brave because you have a tube coming out of your throat, you’re brave because of your attitude.

    I’m a bit late to the game, I finally saw your episode on TAL on Netflix Instant, and your story moved me. I’m going through a tough time right now, and seeing someone else go through a tough time and have such a wonderful attitude helped change the way i looked at things.

    That said, it would be unrealistic for me to believe you were strong, positive, and upbeat all the time. You wouldn’t be human if you were– but the fact that you have moments where you supercede all that shows me you’re made of something extra special.

    Many in your shoes would have given up, many who are not in your shoes do give up. I don’t look down on them because one can never judge the pain of others, but I do admire people like you who persevere despite being in a difficult situation.

  9. Countessm June 28th, 2010 2:06 pm

    Dude, this is what makes you brave. Bathe in the warmth of being inspirational!

    So many small things can mean something large to others.

  10. Rachel July 28th, 2011 10:10 pm

    Mike you are my hero. I am disabled also. I can think/talk on my own I just can’t walk & so I spend a lot of time in bed. Mostly because when I lay down I don’t hurt as much. I saw your show and thought if you can be a bad ass then so can I. Thank you for sharing your story and please don’t give up. You are giving others hope.

    – Rachel from CA