November 6, 2021:

I don't know that I'd ever lied before.

I remember so vividly the moment the thought exploded with a flash: If I lie, I can be free (of them). And so I lied, it worked, I had an entire day free (of them), which evolved in time into entire days purely free, to do what I wanted, learn what I wanted, be what I wanted.

I read, massively and indiscriminately. My (children's) books; my mother's (adult) books. I did not understand her volumes of Jung, but then, neither did she. I made functioning electrical and later electronic circuits; mapped the apartment in a series of increasingly sophisticated blueprints; watched reruns of The Dick Van Dyke Show. I lived in my head, a definite improvement.

I did not understand, for decades, that in doing this I was recapitulating my mother's own experience, under vastly different circumstances. So that, in the end, I internalized some of the most debilitated aspects of her personality, with no glimmer of insight into what I'd done.