Greetings Fellow Word Smiths, Grave Earth Travelers, and Friends,
I am completely invested into this moment and this interview. I am looking at it as the destination that has taken me a lifetime to reach, an achievement accomplished, a reason to believe, that said, now I pause in whole wonder and awe struck contemplation and gratitude, and say thank you for this opportunity.
I feel I am obligated to give back what was so freely taken. I owe this world some explanation and perhaps my balled up treasure map, guided by the compass of my heart, and each word written neatly in the blood of my pen, maybe it can help guide somebody through the Minotaur’s Labyrinth, as good books really never end.
It is 6:00 pm and I am on the second floor of an apartment at the beach and it is the 4th of July (Happy Birthday America!!) and raining, but I think they are still planning on launching off the fireworks. I am listening to “Out of the Box” Archives run by Paul Shugrue, and we are taking it easy before we cook up some shrimp.
My view on life is, life is a joke and when you die you get the punchline, because there is something very funny going on around here. I can’t really put my finger on it, but something definitely very funny is happening.
I usually am either running from something or running to something, but when I pause and root in the ground and feel the music vibrate through my bones and I remember to dance, suddenly life makes sense and I dance in gratitude, I dance in victory, I dance in passion, I dance in love. I was taught the word guidance, is “God, You and I, Dance.”
I love to read books, I get a lifetime of wisdom in one sitting, and I love all of those savory nuggets of golden thought to savor and think about, the golden nuggets of thought gathered by people who chip at them with pickaxes from the mines in their heart. I enjoy talking to people and finding their treasure, and all the gifts that come along with this. I know without a doubt it is the rainbow that is the true treasure, not the pot of gold at the end.
I used to dress my scarecrow very scary looking when my garden and crops were just withered weeds in clumps of parking lot asphalt and desert sand, but having spent much time tending my garden into an oasis of sorts, now I want my scarecrow to welcome people and let them enjoy my crops. Anything I invest my love and time into will grow. Knowing we only have a certain amount of time gives me this super sense of urgency to do good works now.
Each moment, the present, is a gift and I am surrounded by countless unopened moments and I strive to enjoy each one. I have conjured in my mind a perfect sanctuary, a sandy pebble river bank with a large tree and its shady canopy above me and a beautiful flowing river, my mind, full of fish that are my thoughts. I sometimes like to just sit there and watch the fish swim past me, not particularly engaging any of them, just aware of their presence, but eventually I must feed, I cannot hold on to the gap for too long, and my mind must think. I grab hold of a fish, a thought, and I bite into it, and that thought becomes my reality.
Sometimes these fish come from a nuclear reactor plant a ways back and there have been times in my life when I couldn’t weed out the mutated fish/thought, my filter was gone, and I acted on each one. Needless to say this has led to some embarrassing and my own life endangering moments, as well as some very humorous ones, and some things I deeply regret that scar my soul and eat at me.
I say this as an introduction to a label I have, one that has taken me a lifetime to wear proudly, I am diagnosed with schizophrenia.
A lot of my writing is based on real delusions, I have come to really appreciate the small differences that make us complete, I call schizophrenia, “DreamWalking”. I explain it is like when you are asleep and have completely bought into your dream, even if it is super strange or irrational, and it is not until you wake up that you realize it was just a dream. That’s how I get when un-medicated.
I am medicated now and things are good, but having had this unique perspective I think most do not understand, has given me some food for thought and a great source of creative strength and inspiration.
I have written eight books but two need work and my latest one is just the beginning of a trilogy. If you go to Smashwords or Barnes and Noble’s website and type in “Luke Imontefone” they will appear and you can download them for free.
This is my vision below, I wrote it for a group I belonged to that has disbanded but it is true to my heart. I wrote it from my own beliefs. It is carved into me.
My purpose is accomplished when I draw from a source of love and not a source of fear. I share a common and hearty attitude of gratitude, and draw on love, to weather the rough seas when we find ourselves in times of turmoil.
For it is when the waves of life grow so large and look so overwhelming and threatening and challenging, that we are meant to ride them, not run and become crushed under them. It is the waves strength that propels us onto shore. I choose to view our events in our life as either lessons or blessings, I choose to learn positive skills and knowledge from our lessons and to enjoy and be grateful for our blessings.
We who have struggled climbing up the mountaintop carrying our personalized giant boulder, we have developed strong muscles, carrying our own heavy burdens, uphill, alone, but we cannot make it to the top.
We need to ask for help, help to carry and lighten our load, if but a little. We know even the smallest relief can be a great gift and a blessing, and each footstep up the mountaintop gained is a victory, by which we continue to need help with. It is in a moment of clarity, relieved temporary of our burden, when a miracle may happen. How beautiful when we realize we no longer need to carry our boulders and we can drop them.
Carrying such heavy weight, we have grown strong muscles, and when relieved of it, we help others with their burdens, until they reach the pinnacle point when they realize they no longer need to carry their boulders everywhere they go and can let them go.
Our experiences with these challenges have made us strong, and the further down the hole we have fallen, and then climbed out, the more we can safely guide those, still digging in their own holes, the way out.
It is so healing and unifying when we realize we are not hurtling through the darkness of space all alone, there are others who experience similar trials and life events and who are recovering with us. Recovery, from falling off a horse and breaking every bone in our body, is not just healing back to normal, recovery is getting back on the horse and learning how to ride the horse and avoid from falling off the horse again.
We welcome our individuality that makes us special and our gifts, unique. Happiness is using our gifts we are given to help somebody else and knowing we are all just one piece in the puzzle, and we all have unique gifts to fill in others flaws, and we all have flaws and holes that alone we cannot overcome but the gifts of others can help fill, knowing our experiences shape us into our own unique puzzle piece, that we had to have happen for us to be able to fit perfectly into the puzzle.
We care because once we were lost in the dark cold of mental illness, co-occuring, and/or substance abuse, until someone journeyed into the dark with a candle blazing in their heart full of warmth and love, and lit our heart and rescued us. Now that the candle in our heart is lit, we can safely journey into the dark with no fear, and light other candles in other hearts with the same spark.
We will journey into the deserts, the darkness, we go where we are needed. We are on our own unique journey in recovery, we take many different roads, but we are not alone, our purpose is clear, to raise the flag of hope for all of the hopeless to see, and together march and parade and storm into the gates of all heck and release our lost brothers and sisters from their own self-made prison cells where they suffer needlessly tortured behind doors that are not even locked but seem so overwhelmingly impossible to open alone.
I would like to help promote the creative gifts of the Mentally “ill”, that is a flag I would be honored to carry into the gates of Heaven, or maybe in the very least, a Queen Burger Joint in Hades? Plant it storming the lunar gates of the moon?