Hello world!

A great man told me “Fairy tales start with ‘Once upon a time’ war stories start with ‘No s*** there I was…’”

Have you ever wondered, “How the f*** did I get to this point?”

Well, this is me trying to figure that out. These are my personal war stories, my victories, my defeats. These are the confessions of a recovering workaholic 30-something who survived breast cancer and who isn’t a princess anymore.

Hope you enjoy things as I try to figure out my life after breast cancer and marrying a wonderful and nerdy giant. These are my no crap moments filled with laughter & tears. As I’m fond of saying “At least we’ll have a good story!”

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Dear Mother – An angry letter that will never be sent.

Dear Mother,

I think we are both aware by now that I only call you “mother” when I am being either extremely formal or I am displeased. You are not Mom or Mommy or any of the fun nick-names we call you, right now to me, you are “Mother” and my dear Mother you and I need to have what many call a “Come to Jesus” moment.

This is the 2nd time within a year where you put yourself in the hospital and the 2nd time within a year where you almost died. Bringing your total to 4 times in my life where you decided you needed attention and sympathy more than your children and family. Yet, you claim that WE don’t love YOU! You pick on my older siblings especially M. You target her and say she did things that she never has. You have grown mean and angry and bitter and non of us know why. We have all asked you to see a doctor, a therapist or someone to figure out what is going on as something isn’t right.

You NEVER call us, we always call you, you NEVER check in on us, we check in on you and Father. Father is angry at us now. He thinks we are being mean and want to hurt you, he thinks we are making you sick because that is what you tell him. Father thinks by giving you your way all the time you’ll be happy and healthy and Father is allowing you to be sick. Father and you don’t understand the severity of your situation and that your own choices and him enabling you will end up with your death. Father found you in a coma next to the bed, you are lucky to be alive. You need to understand how lucky you actually were!

I am angry Mother, I am so, so, so very angry that you with how open and loving and close our family is are choosing destructive paths and being deceitful to us. You know your children have all been to therapy, you know we have friends who suffer from extreme depression and anxiety and you know your children have had their own difficult times as well. Not just depression but divorces, cancer, deaths, heartaches and we have all faced them and marched on. We obviously don’t get this trait from you, you are not pioneer stock, you are not a survivor, you are not resilient and you enjoy being the victim.

Mother your life hasn’t been difficult, your children have loved you, your husband has loved you and your own mother while she isn’t the cuddliest has always loved you. Why do you claim that you are a victim of everything when the rest of us refuse, why do you always bring up the bad and rehash the old sorrows again and again and again. WHY?!!!

A parent should not ever try to make their children feel unworthy or unloved.  You have always but yourself first making us think your illness were our faults. For once your youngest daughter is putting herself first and her own child 1st.

I want to enjoy what time we have left with you but I can’t. The last time I spent time with you I cried, I was so disappointed and stressed out that I started bawling and Father yelled at me because how dare I upset YOU although you were the reason I was bawling my eyes out. I ended up in the hospital the next day, I thought there was something wrong with me or the baby and had to be monitored for hours. You didn’t care because you were still upset with me.

My siblings and friends have been the moms and dads I’ve needed over the last 7 months. You can’t blame your anxiety or depression, this is about this isn’t about you having something wrong with you, it’s about you not wanting to be or not knowing how to be healthy. It’s about you being manipulative and abusive and how although we have all loved you and we have all made enormous sacrifices for you that you do not do the same for us. It’s about me and my siblings finally coming together and being more important to each other, us raising each other up and putting an end to the negative you have caused between us. My siblings and I are through with the issues and while we do love you and Father we are stepping back until you accept help. Actually accept help, not say you will and toss us out when we disagree with you.

 

Love your youngest daughter.

Cold Anger

There is an anger inside of me that is cold, calculating and calm. This is a scary anger to me, the one that will not go away with shouting or yelling or blowing up at someone. This anger threads through me and settles in my veins providing an icy slush of malice.

I rarely get this type of anger, I prefer the heat of the emotional melt-down because once the heat is gone I am normal again. I forgive again. I can move on again.

This cold anger though, it’s not leaving and for that I have to thank my mother who has finally pushed me and my siblings past the point of emotions. My mother, I’ve written about her before, I’ve vented about her need to seem perfect to the outside world, how she is loving and kind and yet extremely mentally and emotionally abusive and manipulative.

My mother, the woman who loved and raised me and tried to control my siblings and I through her illnesses, her anxiety who likes her medication too much and for the 2nd time in less than a year is in the hospital ICU and we are waiting for her to wake up.

I need her to wake up, I need her to survive and I finally take care of herself versus being sick. She is sick though but not in the way she thinks. She takes too many meds, she doesn’t take the right ones at the proper time including her insulin. She doesn’t eat properly, she hoards both possessions and animals. It’s not her anxiety she needs to worry about it’s her wish to be ill because when she is ill she can have everything her own way. When she is ill we can’t fight her and she gets all the attention she wants.

What she refuses to admit is that psychologically she is ill and while I understand this myself I am still angry.  I am angry she wont get help, angry she wont try therapy, angry she has chosen to be with the hoard of wild cats that march in and out of the house versus knowing her grandchildren or even allowing us to come over.

I am sad too. I am sad that I don’t want her to know what could be her last grandchild that is growing in me now. I am sad that she has chosen her addiction to attention, meds, hoarding etc over her family. In my cold anger though I don’t want to put my little girl through what she putt my siblings and I through. I don’t want my baby thinking my mother’s illness is her fault because she wasn’t good enough. I don’t want my child thinking the way I did growing up and suffering the same abuse. I refuse to let her treat her the same way.

I am sad, angry and icy but this is what I have to be to get through this.

Learn Your Worth!!!

This has been a phrase uttered countless times by countless people and I’ve been saying it myself to way too many people lately. When did we as humans begin to be so bullied by different groups that if there is one thing different or weird about us that we feel that we are worthless?

You are worth more than you think, you are worth respect, you are worth kindness and you are worth love!

I know it’s hard to see this during depression, I know your anxieties and fears lie to you, I know you doubt and I know you are scared but you are worth so much more than you think. I want to change this. I NEED to change this. I’ve been so lucky as with all my doubts I’ve never questioned ever if I deserved to be loved and the fact that so many people question this about themselves including my own dear friends just rips pieces of my heart out.

You are not a bad person, even if you have bad moments you, yourself, yes you reading this, are not actually bad. Bad moments, depressive episodes, anxiety filled minutes or days, those are part of being human. Look how strong you are, fighting your chemical imbalance everyday.

Live each day the best you can and if that means just getting out of bed and taking a shower than you are okay. My best isn’t your best and vice versa, we all have different levels and it doesn’t make one of us better than the other.

So please, please, please try your best to learn that you are worth so much more than you believe. Be your weird, your wonderful, your beautiful self! I’ve often told my own nephews, “Why be ordinary when you can be extraordinary, there’s enough ordinary already.”

 

Nightmares and Believing

My nightmares are getting worse, I know some people read and interpret dreams but these ones I don’t need someone to do that. I need peace of mind or at least a dream catcher that will catch and hold the nightmares until I am awake.

Some people will chalk my nightmares up to weird pregnancy dreams and this is fine but I know it’s because my triggers are hit almost daily. My nightmares turn my husband into my abusive ex.

I’m raw from my triggers being poked, the constant posts about rape and abuse sadden me and anger me as much as they hit my own sore spots.

I don’t want to turn a blind eye, I don’t want to let down my fellow humans and turn my head the other way. I want to be strong and fight. I try, I speak, I write and then I have nightmares.

Like so many women out there right now I am torn in what I want to do or what I can do. Talking to a friend we’ll call Momma L. I shared my fear of bringing a female child into this world, of raising her in this political climate that things just have to change. Momma L. said something, “Honey we are changing it now and your child as well as others will bring even more change, this is why we fight.”

I want to believe her so badly, I want to raise my daughter to be loving, kind, resilient and tougher than the toughest nail. I want her to change the world for the better in more efficient ways than my generation has especially as it seems that the changes sadly will not happen on the levels that they need to before my little girl is here.

I need to believe that abusive men like my ex, the pieces of scum who raped my friends, the intolerant dirt that walk among us will be less tolerated, will have karma treat them to the love they have shared with others.

Most importantly though, I need to believe that as we women fight, good men like her father who holds me through panic attacks and is worried about making sure his little girl is happy, loved and proud of him; Men who may not speak out and be as vocal as us women, but will march beside us, even carry us and raise our banners as their own when we need them to, men that love us and never, ever want us or anyone else to hurt if they can help it, men that wont rape, wont abuse and wont stomp all over us… I need to believe that those men are more common than I thought. I need to believe that my nephews are growing into those men. I need to believe that the next generation will be those men and that the women born now will not know by experience, only by stories what we went through.

So with my worst nightmares where I cry out and curl around the child in my belly as I reach out to feel that it is indeed my husband next to me, during those times I awaken, I have to believe that the future will be better and all the little girls out there wont be like I am now.

 

 

Seed of Hope

Introduction: With all the negative and gut wrenching stories from males and females, from the loss of innocence and trust to the damage of one’s soul and the horrid politics going on I wanted to re-share one of my favorite poems. 

 

Seed of Hope

When nothing else is there, when you hold nothing in your hands, when the world seems to crumble or grumble at you there is Hope.  On days where you cry it’s watered, on days when you are glad sunshine pours in and on a day when there is nothing you can watch the seed grow again.

Some days it will grow as big and strong as a red wood and some days it may get cut down but all the while your hope stays firmly planted in the ground.

On the days that you don’t believe in yourself, on days you can’t go on, push through the difficulties and hope will never be gone.

Deep down in the soil in your soul there lies the hope of tomorrow and you can see all your future goals.

Don’t give up ever and always reach for the stars and sun in the sky for as long as you have hope you will indeed survive.

Image result for redwood forest

Dedicated to all those that need hope, all those that have been through difficulties no matter how small or big. There is always hope. 

Underestimated

He wouldn’t hit me, he knew that would make me leave. Hurting me with his hands wasn’t an option so he used his emotions, his brain and his words. He manipulated, he pulled, he pushed, he tore me down to build me back up into what he wanted. He never planned for me to leave.  He never thought that I would finally go. He underestimated my strength. He underestimated me.

He killed the old me, the carefree me and for that I needed revenge. The best revenge was reviving myself. I found me and I grew and became not just the old naive me but the stronger, happier more aware version of myself.

He got scared. He tried to attack and scare me into going back to him. Again he underestimated my strength, he underestimated me.

12 years was too long, 12 years taught me not to wait anymore. I served 12 years under his rule. I will serve no more.

He lost me. He lost what made him happy while I found my happiness.

I found love, I found what I needed and wanted and he was found lacking.

I will not be underestimate. I will no longer underestimate my own strength.

My long story… warning triggers ahead…me too….I believe her

All the social media news is about sexual assault, abuse and other people’s stories. I’m not ashamed or scared to share mine it’s just I don’t feel like shoving it down other people’s throats is a good thing. Also for all that is holey we warn people about spoilers let’s give a heads up on triggers too shall we? So I wont post on social media but I will write it here. My story isn’t as bad as others and I was lucky I stopped it before it got worse.

Warning triggers ahead…

I was 17 turning 18, senior year of high school. I was a decent student, liked most of teachers, didn’t cause trouble, was a TA, Secretary in the Science Club, Danced and was 1st Cello in our Orchestra. I also was really close to a core group of friends although I talked to many different groups. I also was really close to a male teacher and his wife who were about my oldest sister’s age (11 years older)

I babysat for the couple, their little girl knew my name and I played D&D at their house in the Teacher’s group almost every Friday. He taught us how to play D&D at school and Magic the Gathering and was our Science Club Adviser. I had absolute trust in him and that I was always safe around him. Nothing in my past had shown me that I should be afraid of men or teachers or someone older than myself.

Senior year things started getting weird, as his TA (teacher’s assistant) a male student younger than me liked me and I brushed him away because I was busy and didn’t really understand that I was an attractive girl. The kid got so mad that I ignored his advances and shooed him away that he went and punched a wall in the hallway. We both got detention as “you know how you look when you wear those cloths” and that I excited the interruption. I didn’t understand, I asked how did I look, I wasn’t being coy, I didn’t want a compliment, I wanted to know what was wrong with what I was wearing. My teacher worded it in such a way that I was attractive and in the skirts I caused reactions in men. It was the 1st time I felt weird or ashamed really of my body.

(Side note I was going through my punk/ska stage in the early 2000s, not uncommon for me to wear school appropriate length plaid skirts with knee highs and plaid pants with studded belts etc. I was always covered and school appropriate though.)

Then other odd incidents occurred, from him telling me that the other teachers thought we were too close and it was inappropriate, that they thought I would turn him in. I didn’t understand, I asked for what and why. This escalated into him trying to get me alone in places like in the female science department bathroom that was used for storage and something in me just said no, I don’t think it’s appropriate especially with what everyone else was saying. He got mad. I realized now he was grooming me and it backfired on him.

Small things like that kept occurring, I started pushing the Science Club members, my main friends, away at this point and although I still ate lunch up there almost every day I didn’t chat with him as much as he started turning moody and making more comments about how I ignore him now, how he missed me, how I am not as affectionate or trusting to him and he thought I didn’t like the other guys so why am I flirting with them. It all got too weird and something in me told me it was passed time to quit the club.

My last day with the Science Club…

Physics day at Magic Mountain, my girlfriends who I had said nothing to about any of the weird issues with the Teacher kept throwing me on rides with him. Things escalated when he grabbed my thigh on a roller coaster. At that point I KNEW it wasn’t ok, I tried to stay away from him for the rest of the trip, tried to do anything to make myself not desirable to him. He didn’t like me flirting with boys, I made out in the back of the bus with an underclassman and friend of mine who liked me. He was quick to pull me aside and lecture me and accuse me of being a liar because I previously stated I didn’t like the guy. At that point I didn’t care, I was using the guy to help put up boundaries with the teacher, maybe if I was seen as taken he’d stop?

I decided I would confront the teacher and get my stuff out of his office the next school day. I was sitting in the hallway during zero period when one of my best guy friends approached me and wanted to know why I was upset. I told him everything, all the weird, all the icky feelings, all the concerns and ended with his hand on my thigh. He called me a liar, he accused me of making it up. I left the hallway and was found bawling in one of the girls restrooms and I couldn’t tell anyone else. If one of my best friends didn’t believe me, if he was so vicious in his actions and words against me I couldn’t admit it to anyone else so I didn’t for a long time. That day the Teacher took everything I had loaned him or his family and left it on my doorstep like a jilted boyfriend. My mother thought it was weird but figured I’d tell her when I was ready.

I withdrew from my core group, ate lunch with different people, avoided the science classes and building when I could. Still the teacher found ways to mess with me, he grew a weird beard, made comments to my classmates about me, said I abandoned him and his wife when she was having a difficult pregnancy, would ask people about me and tried to find out all he could. I stopped talking to people because of him.

He showed up at one of my jobs and I had to explain the situation to a manager and my coworkers who escorted me out to my car because I didn’t feel safe and was having a panic attack on my last day in the back of the store.

I didn’t trust my friends for a long time. I didn’t feel safe again for a long time. When I finally told my female friends he had never done anything like that to them, I was relieved to know that I was the odd one out that he hadn’t tried that with others. At least they were still safe.

It still bothers me, there are more odd facts that come to mind now and with all the social media posts I’ve been having nightmares again. I haven’t had nightmares in years about this. I’m in my 30s now and still I remember the feelings, the distrust the manipulation. I was lucky I got out before anything else happened. I was lucky it wasn’t worse and it hadn’t gone further.

This is why I don’t want to read everyone’s story about the #metoo and #Ibelieveher because I do believe you, it was me too, however, I also need to live a life that I am not afraid to live where I don’t dwell on the bad days, where I have moved past being 18 and scared and having panic attacks.