March 20, 2013

Phase II

I started writing this blog one year ago.  I had no idea why I did it…and to be truthful, I still don’t.  Back then I wrote for me, and for me only.  Every night I sat here and vomited the words onto the page, and was freed.  It was cheaper than therapy.  Outside, I didn’t have to answer any questions.  Everyone could just read the blog.  I didn’t want to lie and say, “We’re fine” to the multitude of people who asked.  We weren’t fine.  And I’m not a good liar.  I was in pain, and was intent on taking everyone down with me.  I wanted everyone to feel my pain.  I had never known such pain, didn’t realize it even existed, and I didn’t think it was fair to carry the burden alone.  I wanted people to know that this could happen to them.  I wanted them to know that we started out as just regular people.  I was blindsided, and so I offered myself up as the cautionary tale. The blog became my bullhorn.

I’m not sure what I expected, but I sure didn’t think 600,000 people would read it.  I wrote most of these posts in 15 minutes or less.  I remember back then stumbling upon blogs with thousands of email subscribers and thinking that I would like to be like them.  I wanted to have those readers.  Now I do.  I’ve won blogging contests and awards and have been ranked number one on different sites.  And suddenly…..I’m not really sure it’s at all relevant or important.

I’m not sure what my ambivalence means.  Maybe it means nothing.

I think right now it just means that other things are more important to me.  My kids.  Living in the moment.  Being more present with them.  Moving on to the next phase. 

I’m terrified of the next phase.  In the next phase, I have to go back to work.  I have to make money, rather than just spend it.  In the next phase, I have to do what I do with a whole lot less hours in the day.  I feel I already have about 10 jobs.  Now I’m going to have another one.  And I’m scared.

In the next phase, I have to face reality.  Because this next phase is going to last a long, long time.  Like forever. 

It’s hard for me not to blame Dave right now.  I always hate him when I’m scared and overwhelmed.  It’s his fault.  HE should be working.  NOT ME.  HE should be HELPING ME.  Not rotting in a casket.

I’ve been quietly contemplating my next move from the moon lodge.  I decided I should consult Dave on what to do, since perhaps he can see things I can’t.  I know I’m not that great at taking directions from most people, so I’m not sure why I’m asking a dead person what I should do.  “So here’s the deal,” I say.  “I need $1,092,000 so that I don’t have to go back to work.”  This is no random number.  It’s a carefully calculated figure of what I need until baby darling finishes high school.  By then surely I will have figured something else out, right?

I bought a lottery ticket.  I was quite surprised I didn’t win $1,092,000.  I wrote the number down and folded it up carefully and put it in my wallet.  I’ve made a few wishes since then, like when it was 3:13 on 3/13/13.  Which, by the way, was the day Pope Francis was installed.  Expect great things from Pope Francis, whether you are religious or not.  I know that he will be great because I unexpectedly cried and got very emotional when he bowed his head and asked the world to pray for him.  I prayed for him out loud, as did millions of people in the world simultaneously, and that is a degree of coolness that should not be lost on any conscious person.  How often does that happen?  Not nearly enough is my answer.  That’s a lot of positive energy being released into the universe at one time.  I hope you were smart enough to reach out and grab some of it, and then send it on its way.  If you missed it, take that moment now.  I happen to think the good stuff swirls around for a while, allowing ample time for people to reach out.

Now, where was I?  Oh right…consulting dead people.

During the ‘consultation’, I somehow found myself opening this bereavement box, which is really just me trying to sound cool, because it’s a shoebox, for fucks sake.  Anyway, it became the resting place for a lot of cards and letters sent to me shortly after the incident.  I didn’t torture myself with all that…instead I read a letter I wrote to him in 2009, when I was pregnant for baby darling.  We were separated at the time.  The letter was very meaningful, because as I read it I realized it was ALL THE WORDS I would have spoken to him had I come upon him standing in the garage with the gun pointed just so.

As I read all the words, I realized that all this time I have really assumed that had he just TOLD ME what was going on, I could have FIXED IT. 


I said all the words.  All of them.  I wrote them down, even.  And it didn’t matter.  My words didn’t matter.  Nothing I did mattered.  This was his destiny.  To die.  His destiny was not to be fixed.  Not even by me.  The masterful and powerful fixer of all things.

My destiny, I suppose, is to just pick up the pieces.  Phase by phase.

In this new phase, I’m not sure what I’m doing with all this social media.  I didn’t post a single thing to the facebook page for a solid week.  I felt very free.  I’m not a good twitterer either.  I just don’t like it.  So if you want me, you probably need to subscribe to the blog, via email or google connect or whatever those boxes are.  I will never not write.  Writing frees me.  It shows me things I can’t see.

Whether or not I share them…well…I just don’t know anymore.

I wish I could change that I’m a chronic oversharer.  That I don’t know how to not say everything out loud.  That my best communication occurs via writing. 

You know, someone asked me the other day, ‘what my message was’?  What is the message I’m selling?

I don’t even know the answer to that, which just really amplifies my current state of being.

I’m in a cocoon.  Plotting.  Planning.  Focusing solely on a means to an end.    I’ve received lots of advice over the past few weeks, everything from write a book, go back to school, start a business, or get married.  The last one is most definitely not on the table.

Right now, I’m just being quiet.  I’m listening.  I feel certain a beautiful butterfly will emerge.  I’m hopeful.

Until then, my message is to simply carry on.  Keep growing.  And love.  Especially your children.


  1. I've been wondering where you've been. I know you don't even know me, have no reason to listen, or believe, but you put it out there, and so ... there it is. For whatever it's worth it's OK to stop sharing with us. This blogging stuff we do isn't really real life. It's just a smokey outlet- and a good one, but not sustainable along side actually doing what we do every damn day long- what we're supposed to be doing. Not the writing, or communicating, just the slippery slop of feeling that without blogging your somehow not being heard. Not affirmed. Not true. You have been heard. You are heard. You will be heard- if you choose. Or not. No matter your path thank you for sharing.

    1. Cheryl - I just wanted to tell you how much your comment touched me tonight. Your words really hit home for me ... I have been struggling with the pressure of "keeping up". Thank you for sharing this and thanks to Mad Woman for all you have given of yourself this past year.

  2. Why do you have to "sell" anything? Why does society feel the need to turn everything into a profit? Emotional or monitary - it doesn't matter... why can't one just be free to share their life, and benefit solely from knowing that they connected with others who may or may not know the same pain? That, alone, is priceless! You have experienced this...

    While my life's phases do not compare to yours, I certainly understand being afraid of the next step. Just remember to take small steps - things will fall into place naturally if you let them come to you!

    *hugs* and remember... there are 600,000 people out there, including me, who support you!!

  3. You are a strong strong woman and your children are blessed to have you as their mother. No matter what life brings to you today or tomorrow, know that what you share (or overshare as you say) helps 1 person in that moment. It may not be your moment but it is theirs.

  4. Keep carrying on in life no matter what, and never stop loving. Think for yourself, and still be moved. This is the message I have always taken away with me from your blog. You are already great and God has big plans for you.

  5. Wow The honesty in your blog makes me want to keep reading. I'm glad to say I'll be following you from now on. The message you want to send out is exceptional.

  6. I find writing so cathartic and most of the people I follow are like you, real, honest and open... :)

  7. I think you have a message that is much larger than you realize. Remember all of those emails you get saying that by reading your blog you have potentially saved someones life or made a spouse wake up and insist on getting help for their spouse, the thank yous you get for helping people in similar situations. YOu are a voice for something that just simply isn't talked about and it should be. You have the ability to help other women or men that have walked in your shoes and may be feeling all alone in this world and that nobody understands their feelings. Keep your head up, you are inspiration, even to those of us who have never walked in your shoes.

  8. I started reading your blog two months ago when I began mine. I wanted to see how the top bloggers did it. I was blown away by your site. Loved it from the first read. Took me a few reads before my clogged brain realized that you lived "across the lake" from me. I can't begin to understand the things that led to your storytelling, but I hope you don't stop. You are the voice I wish I had. Unabashed, uncensored, unplugged! Blog a little, blog a lot, but please don't quit completely. I love a good cameo. Your message or meaning doesn't need to be defined. Be's what has been working so far. You have helped me step up my game. Regardless of what you decide, I wish you all the best.

  9. I'm pretty sure that you're handling it exactly as you should for YOU. Too bad we can't all see what we should do next. I'd sure feel a lot better! You are awesome and I don't throw that word around. Hugs!

  10. You know how much I love you and what you do, right? Just in case I haven't told you lately exactly how fabulous you are... Your message is so much bigger than any blurb anyone could write to describe it. You have taken the whole lot of us on your very personal journey through hell and back. You have come through so much and we have all watched you grow and evolve and kick the grief ninja's ass every step of the way. You have taken a devastating loss that I don't know many people that could have handled with such grace and determination,and used that experience to reach out to the masses with your words. Your words ARE your message. All of them. <3

  11. As a mom of 3 sons with a husband who suffers from depression, I cannot tell you how much I appreciate your message. You give me the courage to make so many hard decisions with respect to my own life. I pray for you and your family often and hope that someday you will have true peace. I hope, for myself, that you continue your blog, however, if you do not I will still be grateful for having had the opportunity to share your story.

  12. Sometimes life throws us for unexpected loops and you look back at it all and think "That couldn't be my life" Such a wonderful message. Keep your head up, keep listening and carry on. I am new to your blog but hope you continue to write as I have found so much inspiration in the short time I have been reading.

  13. I found your blog a couple weeks ago on the "Top Mommy Blogs" website, and I've been reading through all your posts everytime I get a chance. I just wanted to tell you how much you've helped me.
    I'm only 20 and have a 10 month old daughter and on April 4th it will be 6 months since her dad passed away. Every single thing you say on your blog is exactly how I feel and have felt on a daily basis, right down to a T. Everytime I read something of yours I'm like "YES! Thank God I'm not the only one! I'm not crazy after all!" Or maybe I am, who knows. Haha. I feel so, I don't know, relieved, to know I'm not the only one who has to feel these things and go through this, because I honestly don't know anyone else who has. Reading your blog is literally just like thinking, because every thing you've said I have thought. I've been considering starting a blog since I started reading yours and now knowing how much it must help you to get everything off your chest, I definitely am. Thank you so much for helping me feel like I'm not alone! You really have no idea how much your blog has helped me.

  14. I remember the anger. After my husband died (not suicide), every time something broke or didn't go right I cursed him out loud. Okay, so I only did it for the first couple of years. He's been gone 9 years (exactly tomorrow), and things look very different now. Not so scary, or angry.
    You'll get there. I just found your site and love it.

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