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Cruddy February

Well, it's either sit here and record my pain with a forgotten medium, or lay awake in the dark screaming for Cora, and Joe.

It would've been Cora's 3rd birthday this Friday. If my tears weren't so hot, maybe I'd try and talk about it.

I understand what they mean in that the second year can be as hard as the first. The first year your heart is cut open and bleeding. You're consumed by grief. Consumed! No good meds will snap you out of it. The tears are deep inside, beyond the reach of reason. The second year those tears are healing. You don't feel like you're drowning in scalding water anymore. But there is emptiness. Memories flood you because the pain is no longer there to block it.

My senses are awake, taking in my environment, and remembering the times I was happy with my family as a whole. The triggers hit harder than hammers to the belly.

As I sit here crying, the pain isn't letting up. I remember one cold night I wept until the early hours. I sent myself outside in freezing temperatures to see if the could could shake me from the pain. It didn't.

I've mourned alone and I will continue to mourn alone. There are days I can't be as strong, like tonight, where my mother's heart cries for her daughter- to never be answered again.

Enjoy your nice warm chair and being surrounded by people who love you. Not everyone is as lucky in life as you.

There's a reason I have a life alert system in place because if I fell and got hurt, no one would find me for days. My small children would go days without food or water.

No one gives a shit about us.

Home Alone for Christmas

If you have family and friends to spend time with over the holiday, you're lucky.

It's not so much my loss that keeps me home alone with two small children. It is one of them having special needs.

I remember what Thanksgiving was like. Tristen needs eyes on him at all times. I spent most of Thanksgiving chasing him. Who doesn't get full on Thanksgiving? The single mom with a special needs child.

To gather for Christmas, it would be a three hour long round trip, to which I must play chase again and go hungry. Forget it. Not worth it. When your eyes have to be on your child at all times, you can't hold a conversation anyway. So, you don't get to enjoy your time with relatives. That's not how to spend quality family time.

I think my family days are over. I put too much value in family and it has only led to disappointment.

I wanted family life. I'll never deny that. I know that if Joe and Cora were alive, or even just Cora, yesterday would've been spent baking cookies. Today, gift giving and hot breakfast, followed by relaxing and watching the kids play, then a comfort food for dinner. I had the itch to go nontraditional for Christmas dinner by making lasagna.

All of it is meaningless to me now. The holidays are forever ruined. I will not accept anything less than what I could've had. It's NOT okay to hear "at least you still have Tristen and Lydia". Not good enough. Never will be.
My family is broken. Nothing can change that.

I know I don't have the heart to celebrate anything when I live without hope. Hope seems silly to me in a world where tomorrow isn't promised. Who should bank so much energy on "what if"?

My Legacy

I'm beginning to think my legacy may not be my children. No, I am questioning if my legacy is the stories I plan to tell.

Writing gives me purpose in a world where tomorrow isn't promised. It is my reason for living now.

My children may be my stories. Given the project I've outlined, I can clearly see that. I can't achieve the family I always wanted to have in real life. The only way to do it now is in story.

Having said that, I've accepted the total loss of my dreams in life. I was going to try and have another child through insemination, but what's the point? I can't ever have the family I always dreamed of. We are forever broken. Holidays and birthdays will never be the same, no matter what.

Lydia, my poor girl, is going to have it tough finding her own way in life. I hope she makes good friends, because she will have no family to fall back on. Joe had no brothers or sisters and my childless brother is "off". She has no cousins. Her siblings can't be counted on. They both have developmental issues.

I admit, Lydia was the main reason I was going to try and have another child. For her sake. So she wouldn't have to be alone. I know what it's like to grow up with an "off" sibling. I know what she's going to have to deal with. Only, she won't have any extended family to turn to. No grandparents, no cousins.

It's sad to me.

Given the nature of friendship in this day and age, I am really worried about her.


For a while I tried not to cry in front of Tristen and Lydia. I didn't want them to see me in pain. I don't know when, but I lost the will to do that. I let my tears flow now.

Lydia is at the age Cora died last year. Between the sisterly resemblance and similarities in age, the triggers just about kill me. People wouldn't understand if they cared to ask. I can almost see the horror in their faces. How dare I tell them it makes me feel sad to love my youngest daughter. The narrowest of minds would be appalled and turn their noses away without trying to understand why.

Ignorance is bliss.

How can they judge so harshly something they've never been through? Everyone is so busy with themselves, keeping their lives neat and tidy, they can't be bothered with much more than that. I guess it's easier to draw quick conclusions and move on. I've seen this in my family over the last year. Once in a while someone will think of us. When they inquire, they only want to hear good things. They're almost willful about it, like they can't accept anything less. If I manage to tell them how it truly is, they dismiss it and say things will get better. Those are like magic words. Hardship all goes away the moment you tell someone it'll get better. Never mind the pain and suffering in the meantime.

I give up on people. Humanity failed me. No, really, it has. In this long year since they died, I would've killed for just *one person* to come over and give me company. Are you listening? Do you see what I'm telling you? I mourned alone! It would've been nice to see just one person give two shits. Is that too much to ask for? Do we have such high expectations of others now that we must suck it up and move on no matter the loss? Well, I'll tell you what. I'm sick and tired of getting the cold shoulder.

I cut the fakes from my life. The people who stood by and watched me suffer for months and did nothing. The people who looked the other way twiddling their thumbs hoping someone else would help me so they wouldn't have to. The people who gave broken promises to help. The people who said they'd be there for me. The people who offered for me to call them any time. The people who let me use their voicemail instead. The people who were too busy to talk. The people who said they'd call me back and never did.

Yeah, family, friends, they're all a joke.

You know what life has taught me through one hardship after another? The only things guaranteed are suffering and death. Think about it. Happiness is worked for, or is it not? I can't get back my happiness because those people are dead. Who in their right mind would choose to keep living? To keep suffering?

I found that answer at last. The only thing worse than living is the idea of never seeing my husband and daughter again. I've said I would relive everything I've suffered if it meant I could see them again. I mean everything. And I mean everything AND knowing what would happen to them. I love them that much. Having said that, with tears down my cheeks, I will suffer the rest of this miserable life if it means I get to see them again.
I'm a spiritual woman and don't want to risk never seeing them again because of suicide.

What most people don't realize is the weight of that suffering. It's so much easier to read it in words. I will cry tonight for my daughter and many more nights. I will cry for my beloved Joe. Many nights. I will stay true to my heart. I won't remarry. The idea of it doesn't settle with me. This means loneliness. I will probably die alone. That horrifies some people. Not me. I've always had an independent nature. I've had to develop one because... no one ever gave two shits about me. I learned that the hard way, over this last year, when inaction proved my worst fears.

Now, I feel better. A little better. Having vented this.

Writing Again

First, I didn't think I could get back into writing. It has been well over a year since I worked on anything. My bad? Well, for anyone not paying attention I was knocked off the rails when my beloved husband Joe and precious daughter Cora died in a car accident last year.

I made good choices with the settlement that came from that tragedy. I don't need to work for about fourteen years. I've the kind of time writers dream of to write their junk. Yesh, I say "junk" because (let's face it) that's what it is. Too many dreamers out there. I used to do that too.

I've taken a different approach this time. It's a clever one. I'll give myself credit for that. Instead of developing strategies that might sell, I've decided to turn to what drives me to do this crazy activity in the first place and write about the stories that have been in my head for years. You'd think that would be common sense, but, meh.

The result? Well, I can't tell you how much easier it has been to get these stories out of my head. Maybe writers should focus on what they want to tell. If it sells, it sells. If it doesn't, well, there is a story to be proud of. Not many people can actually write a novel.

The only plan I have in this adventure is to write a couple novels a year for the next twelve, then try to publish them. If they don't fly, I'll self-publish in the interest of *seeing that my stories are told*. I'll have lots of money saved by then to support the effort.

I need to research my state's laws regarding a certain matter, and then pen names. If a pen name can protect me well enough, I may try to publish sooner.

I've noticed that I've been a lot happier since I began and each day I add something substantial to the effort puts me in a great mood. Maybe this is the purpose I need in a world where tomorrow isn't promised.

They were

They were my family. My husband and daughter. This time last year they were still alive. Time is cruel. Time takes all the good in your life away. In an hour I'll no longer be able to say, "this time last year they were still alive". From then on "this time last year" means death. Pain. Loss. Broken dreams. Despair. Emptiness.

Yeah, the best days of my life are over. I appreciate all the good experiences I've had but I don't feel there is much left in my life to live for. I think I may have said- I'm 36, not 20. I don't have any dreams left. I either achieved my dreams or sacrificed them. I can't enjoy life like I used to. I'll never be so happy again. When your quality of life is diminished, what do you live for? People would say I have my kids but as I know too well, kids don't garuntee happiness. I'd be a fool to assume I'll see them grow because nothing in life is guaranteed. They could die any time. Then what? There's nothing left.

Sometimes I can't believe the way I think. I used to be very happy, full of life, and living my life to the fullest. I've lost too much. I'll never be like that again. I don't care about things like I used to. I've let go.

I just want to die.

Dear Cora,

My little princess. I still haven't had the courage nor heart to read your autopsy. A part of me wants to know the time of your death and that's it. I'm not ready to know it. Call me weak. It's been almost a year since you died princess. It doesn't take much to make me cry about you. I'm already in tears typing this.

Someday I may know when you died. I think for now I'm afraid that it might turn out you had enough time left for me to see you. I was led to believe this wasn't the case. I know it would've been difficult in this rural area to reach the hospital, what with the traffic jam created by the accident, long winding back roads, and the storm itself being barriers. Still, I wish I could've held you as you lay dying. You deserved to be in your mother's arms, to have your mother's love in those final moments.

Identifying you asked too much of me but holding you in your final moments? Giving you my love? No, never. A mother's place is at her child's side.

Please forgive me for not tending to identifying you. It's not that I didn't care then. That's far from the truth. I needed to protect myself. Baby girl, I wanted my last memories of you to be when you were alive and this part I don't regret. I think I instinctively knew how damaging seeing you dead would've been.

I miss you so much. I really wish I could've gotten to know you better. Eighteen months wasn't long enough. There was still so much of this world to show you. Whether you liked us, your family, or not. This world is an amazing and beautiful place. It would've been my hope that you could see that too. The world itself could've given you enough reason to move along through your own life until you found the meaning of it.

For me the meaning of life is lost and can never be restored. It died when you and your father did.

Dear Joe,

I once told you that I didn't deserve you. I still believe it. If there was something I regretted about saying that, it is because it didn't take your feelings into consideration. You might have thought I did. I do know you deserved to be loved deeply and despite my flaws- I know I was able to give you that much. I know that you valued altruistic love and that is perhaps why you tolerated my flaws and weaknesses. You saw the love in me. You knew it was for you. If you have forgiven me and are waiting for me, I'll know it's because of my love for you. I will have earned your wait. After all this time I love you still. You deserve my tears. They drip unending love, loyalty, and dedication to your memory. Yes, you deserve to be mourned like this. The world was cruel to you. Someone, a woman, should be left here weeping for you. That is me.

Twist the Heart

I dreamed of Michelle. I'm thirty-six years old now. This probably means I'll dream of her until I die or I discover she's dead. I don't dream of dead people. Believe me, I'd love to dream of Joe and Cora and see my dear loved ones as much as I dream of her.

She was pregnant. I tried to warn her about post-partum depression. It was hard. She kept insulting me the whole time. In the end she listened, though. In my eyes that made the dream worth it. The moment she started listening and said she'd look into it.

I still care about her. I likely always will. I can't make much sense of it anymore. I don't remember enough of what happened. Maybe my mental state was such that it really was like waking from a bad dream to see my best friend gone. Would anyone really get over that?

I don't have much left to say at the moment. I don't have a lot of time. That is to be expected when you are moving on your own.

I cried all night until five in the morning. I don't choose when my grief hits and I let it flow when it does. It comes a few times a month now but I remember when it was hourly, when I was immobilized in bed and cried until exhaustion forced me to sleep.

Dear Joe,

Things are rapidly changing. The home we knew together is being packed up. Some items are already gone. It hurts. The pain can best be described as packing up bits of you and throwing other bits of us away.

I love you more than life. Throwing you away is hardly what's happening here.

I've been struggling lately, my love (how much I miss saying that to you). Sometimes I wonder if I'm meant to commit suicide. It'd amaze you if you were still here knowing how much effort I've put into getting help and receiving none in return. I promise you the only reason I made it through these last couple days was because, while suicide is selfish, I am still a mom and I can't let the kids go without eating a few days until my body is found. That doesn't sit well with me for our one year old.

Now I'm not in the mood to die. Heaven help me it crossed my mind tonight regardless. I thought I would have to give up the second parcel of land to our home in order to keep Tristen's desperately needed benefits.

No, as the law states land adjoining the homestead does not count as a liquid resource. Thank God. I bought that house for the land so that the kids could have room to run, play, have fun.

I also bought it in memory of you. I know in my heart you'd like the old feel to it and the land involved.

I also bought it in memory of Cora too, for I always kept in mind what she would've liked to have when I spent the settlement. It is because of her death all this is possible.

So, land for the kids to play in was my chief must-have. To think I could've lost most of the outdoor experience for Tristen and Lydia. I would still be crying. I'd have a hard time handling the loss of the yard. Haven't we all lost so much to have that taken too?

My situation is precarious. I don't have a support system. I don't know how I can work and afford childcare. This is part of the reason I want to give up some days. I feel like I'm dangling on a thread, so close to truly losing it all. I tell you... I can't take much more hardship. Even you would clearly see I've been at my limit.

Actually, even if I fail I know you would be proud of me for making it this far. I just know it.



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