Tag Archives: hope

The Bravest Thing I Ever Did-Cont;nuing

A few days ago someone said something to me that has been stirring inside me ever since.  Not a good stir.  And not a good topic.  Not something I would never talk about publicly, and never in a million years finding myself writing a blog about.  But in hopes of shedding some light on a much misunderstood topic, a very relevant one in today’s society, and one that is now a part of my story.  Suicide.  Relax.  Obviously I am here typing this story so it didn’t happen.  But if I were recording a tape from 13 Reasons Why this would be one of them.

Recently my world has literally fallen apart.  My wife, the love of my life, my everything, my best friend…left me.  My family torn apart.  I lost my job.  Had been out of work since February desperately looking for anything without any luck at all.  My daughter and I have been living on next to nothing trying to make ends meet the best we can.  Sounds like a country song right?  If only I could play it backwards and get it all back!  I have been deeply depressed.  And that is putting it lightly.  I stayed in bed for days on end.  Not eating.  Not sleeping.  Just crying.  Throwing up.  I would get up only to make sure my daughter had food or to take her where she needed to be.  I was endlessly applying for jobs.  I would put on my makeup, cry it off on the way there.  Fix myself in the car before going in.  Cry on the way back home.  Crawl back into bed.  And do it all over again the next time.  This went on for weeks.  Months.  The panic attacks are still insane.  I even have them in my sleep.  I wake up gasping for air, thinking I am dying because I cannot breathe.  Clinching at my chest, the tears rolling down my cheeks, trying to calm myself down as my heart is beating so hard I can feel it in my throat.  Wishing the dog could dial 911 so someone could come help me.  The mental and physical pain from a broken heart is real.  And it is unbearable. I write all this not to seek attention.  But to paint the picture of where this blog is going.

The way people deal with pain is different.  And to each their own.  On the night of June 5th, as I sat alone in my home, hysterical crying, I felt I was to the point where I needed the pain to stop.  I couldn’t take the physical pain another minute.  I was not the strong person everyone thought I was.  I was not the mother my daughter needed me to be.  I just wanted the pain I was feeling to go away.  So I took the keys to the truck and I went into the garage, and I started it.  And as I sat there crying the pain was more intense at that moment than it has ever been.  My broken heart…how was it even still beating? I called out for help.  But no one came.  I wanted to die, but only because I wanted to the pain to end.  It seemed like I had been in there forever.  How long did this take?  I was too scared.  So I turned it off and opened the garage door.  I cried myself to sleep sitting right there.  But the next night…I did it all over again.  And again….I was too scared.

So here’s where the stirring comes in…If anyone ever confides in you that they have attempted suicide…don’t tell them that’s the coward’s way out.  You have no idea what they are feeling or what they are going through.  And let me tell you something…everyone is entitled to how they feel.  You have no right to tell them how they should feel.  Anyone that is low enough to attempt to take their own life and is confiding in you with that information is trusting you enough that they think you will support them in some way shape or form, not come back with some type of negative comment such as that.  People who attempt suicide have their reasons and I can guarantee you that none of those reasons is to ever intentionally hurt someone they love. You’re missing the point completely. It’s solely about the pain they are feeling.   And if you can’t find anything to say that isn’t negative, then turn around and walk away without saying a damn thing!  If you cannot be supportive than learn to just be quiet.

I am in a better place now.  No I am in no way shape or form better.  I have a long way to go.  I may not ever be better.  I still hurt.  My heart is still in pieces.  I don’t know that I will ever be whole again.  Who knows.  But what I do know is that I was stopped both those nights for a reason, and am thankful for that reason.  I am not strong like I used to be, but I know I am brave because I was able to cont;nue on when I really, really didn’t want to.  And I know that I now have something else to advocate even stronger for, because it is more personal now more than ever.

Know that if you’ve felt this way, or are feeling this way now that you’re not alone, nor do you have to be a warrior in this battle alone.  There ARE people that care! Reach out…even if it’s to me!

Virtual hugs!


The Circle’s Double Entendre

I made him a promise and I did not keep it. I always tell you to be truthful and I…I lied.

Almost ten years ago I stood in front of your father and I said:

“Today I give you this ring which represents my love and commitment to you. Please wear it always, and when you see it, may it remind you of the vows we’ve made today. I promise to give you the best of myself and to ask no more than you can give. I promise to stay by your side no matter what may come, with all that I have to give and all that I am, in the only way that I know how, completely and forever. From this day forward, you will not walk alone. My heart will be your shelter, and these arms will be your home.”

I lied to him. I promised to ask no more than he could give. That I would stay by his side no matter what. When the words were spoken I had no idea just how great that promise would be. How easy they would be to say, and just how repetitive and how loud they would echo in my head.

If I had not met your father, I would maybe never know just how painful a promise can be.

Don’t ever promise not to ask of someone more than they can give. I thought it sounded noble. Giving. Wise. I accepted less, so much less than what I wanted for myself because someone else could not, would not, give it to me.

I gave all of myself, the best and the worst, from the beginning until now. It isn’t even the end. I ended it and even now, the giving continues. I put candles in the mailbox tonight because he is on day 10 of no electricity in the apartment he will soon be locked out of. I filled out forms upon forms for food stamps and cash assistance that are not for us–but for him. I gave him $10 so he would not sell his wedding ring (which is what they offered him at the pawn shop) because for some reason that I cannot explain I wanted to keep it. My own rings sit in a safe, away from me. I cannot bear to let them go, but I can’t hold them either.

The reverend who married us said that the circle has long been a symbol for marriage: “being unbroken circles, each represents unending love. As often as either of you look upon these rings, may you be reminded of this moment and the love that you have promised.”

When I walked out on our marriage I took a hard look at those rings. A long, hard look. The circle may have been unbroken on my finger, but every blessed promise it once contained had broken my heart. Every one. And in that time, my reminder of the moment in which it was put on my finger no longer was enough to wear it anymore.

Nightly, you ask me why he can’t live with us. Our bedtime conversations start out casual or goofy, and very typical of what I would expect from talking to a loopy-tired, four-year old. And then out of nowhere, you will ask:

“Why can’t Daddy live with us?”

Stupidly on my own behalf, this interruption to our bedtime routine still leaves me tongue tied and surprised. I always take a deep sigh before I respond with the most watered-down response I can think of.

“Because Daddy and I have grown up problems that we can’t seem to fix and we are happier and better parents when we live in two houses.”

It stings to tell his half-lie.

I am a better woman, I am a better mother, I am a better me without him.

He is lost, he is selfish, he is reckless, he is miserable, he is absent without me.

But, my son: he was lost, selfish, reckless, miserable and absent when he had me. The only difference is now I don’t have to drown with him. I can choose to ask for more. I can choose to stop being home for someone who let me walk alone, without apology, so many times.

This is the paradox. It is the best of times and it is the worst of times. This is the high of self-discovery and the low of starting over. I look in the mirror and I am so proud of what I see. I look at your father and I am so inexplicably disappointed and scared. I look at you and I am overwhelmingly proud and blessed.

And while it is less frequent these days, I still look down at my left ring finger and for a millisecond I believe something is missing and I panic.

Then it passes and I realize that even six months later, a barely visible line encircles my finger where a heart full of promises resided, the reminder is no longer what I lost or never had.

The reminder is that I will never allow myself to accept less than what I would give, even on my very worst day.

So, when I tell you that they are “grown up problems” what I mean is a thousand lies, a thousand tears, a thousand chances, a thousand cries that went unanswered. What I mean is that these problems are so big and beyond what your mind can hold and my heart can bear. They are the kind of problems I never want you to know, I never want you to hear because if you did, your question would change. It would change so drastically.

Your question would not be why he can’t live with us. Your question would be, how can he live without us?

So, the truth is, he can’t live with us because when he does I give away a piece of myself, every day, that I will never get back.

Unbroken circles may represent unending love. But sometimes there comes a point where you change the script. Maybe it isn’t unending love for someone else.

Maybe, finally, it is for yourself.

Jessica-An Awesome Single Mama