Dear C.L.

I’m reading a message from a friend and I’m furious. How DARE she flippantly suggest suicide

in such a casual way. Guess what, it is NOT funny in any way. Hey, lady, you know that my father died, 12 years ago on New Year’s Eve. Did you ever think of what I would give to spend 5 minutes with him again instead of you faking your suicide attempt saying “good-bye all.”

YOU didn’t say one word about taking a break from Facebook so that’s all kinds of bullshit and yes, my son gave me your message but I am not calling you back tonight. Maybe sometime but not yet.

I’m not laughing, C.L. Not only that, I don’t know if I can ever forgive you for this. Really, now you are joking about suicide and saying “good-bye?” WHAT THE BLEEP IS WRONG WITH YOU? How dare you? I wrote on your message  if you are serious, someone should please call 911 because I don’t know the town you live in. If you AREN’T serious, they should be called anyway, to teach you that life is worth living, that life is Precious.

There is steam coming from my head, sparks

that I feel, oozing anger like fireworks. Is this what you want your children to see? That mommy is threatening suicide when people hurt her feelings? You have a job, to be a mother and they come first, before you, always.

I want to rip the book I gave you out of your selfish hands, I want to shake  your shoulders. and tell you to wake up and grow up. I am so mad and so sad and angry at life and death that if I started crying now I could not stop.The word for me is Inconsolable.

How dare you take life for granted? Grief is no fun, trust me, I know and it lasts forever, it will be 12 years tomorrow that my dad died. It does not get better every year. At certain times, anniversaries or birthdays, the pain is ripped apart, raw, bloody, new again.

Thanks for all that you have done for me.

I can’t think of you as my friend now..

 

I’ve calmed down a bit but I’m still mad and angry and very sad so I will be in touch NOT on the phone but when I can and do not Bullshit me. There wasn’t a word about FB on that post. You know it and so do I.

Thanks for ending 2014 just the way it started, in the trash.

English: Community Relations worker Donald Jer...

 

 

 

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Even My Tears Cry Tears

 

Father’s Day, 2014 Edition

 

HAPPY FATHERS DAY

HAPPY FATHERS DAY (Photo credit: Insight Imaging: John A Ryan Photography)

Father’s Day is coming, it’s just around the corner. I dread that holiday more than I now dread Christmas, the holiday that my dad and I used to love the most.

My dad has been dead twelve years now, one would think, I would have gotten used to the concept. But, no. I am never  ready for this day. I find myself, each year, being caught unaware with different triggers.

I think there is something very wrong with me. I mean it.

Am I stupid? Very possibly.

I have no dad.

My dad is dead.

 

 

 

Description unavailable

Description unavailable (Photo credit: wakingphotolife:)

 

English: Portrait of 1-year-old baby girl

English: Portrait of 1-year-old baby girl (Photo credit: Wikipedia)My father was the nurturer in the family, the closest in temperament to me, we understood each other with a glance or a smile; similar to the relationship I have with my son. The same type of thinking, parallel ways of feeling.

 

It seems to be Father’s Day again, some Holidays move around the Earth at a quicker pace, don’t you think? Birthdays, when you are older, seem to flash by in a second or two.

Am I stupid? Very possibly so. Can I not learn to get used to it?

Evidently, not.

 

Even writing these words down bring unwanted tears to my tired, blood-shot, green eyes.  I furiously blink away threatening tears.

Twelve years, it’s not like it happened yesterday but sometimes it feels like that, raw like a knife wound.

If it hasn’t gone away by now I don’t think there’s a chance it will ever go away.

So, naturally, when I was in the store a few weeks ago, once again, I headed straight for the Father’s Day section of cards. But this time, I did not actually look through the cards. I noticed where I was and quickly turned around after admonishing myself, without skipping a beat. To me, that’s progress. I didn’t stand in the aisle sobbing like I have done in years past.

There are just some things you can’t get used to, this is one of them.

For all of you who still have your Dads, please cherish them. For the dad of my children, I honor and cherish you and for my friend Alice’s father, JB, who tries to make me feel included even when I am not, I say, thank you.

Happy Father’s Day to the father figure that you do have, be it a friend, a neighbor, an uncle or a cousin, a brother…

And, if you don’t have a father figure in your life, you are even MORE special. Because you have a mom who is mother and father to YOU.  Kiss your Mom, once on each cheek because she makes EVERYTHING worthwhile. I congratulate HER.

forget-me-not - wild form

forget-me-not – wild form (Photo credit: joysaphine)

 

 

 

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Bloody, Foolish, Me

English: Women with Broken Heart

English: Women with Broken Heart (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I am not just a sad woman, I am a bereft child who is sobbing in the shower,

clinging to the metallic shower handle so I don’t collapse.

I  thought I knew myself,

I’m surprised, ashamed, disappointed

pompous me,  I was fine,  I said.

I had received “messages” from my dad from the other side and they did comfort me.

That was then, this is now. It’s the night of THE DAY. He died, eleven years ago at 10:20pm.

It surprises me every year when I think I have everything under control,

Ugh, Rubbish.

These raw emotions find me, sneak up on me, reopening bloody, sore wounds

as if I was being stabbed right through the heart, anew.

The hairy monsters that used to hide in my closets when I was young

don’t have a daddy to tell me all is well. Never again, is hard to take.

I want to curl up in the fetal position and cover myself with soft, blue blankets and blankets reaching to the sky.

I want to see no one

but I have my own family now and I want them to have their own happiness.

We will go together for an early dinner, the kids will move on to their parties,

and I will come back home, begging for tomorrow to come.

Free Writing Friday: Kellie Elmore: Abandoned

Little Fingers!

Little Fingers! (Photo credit: jmccauli)

Abandonment is like a second skin, it rolls up slowly on my arms like old-fashioned gloves, soft, sleek, black, elbow length. My teeth sink into the word “abandoned’ and “insecure” as if I was in the middle of eating a piece of double- layer chocolate cake. I not only taste but feel the delicious, sweet frosting rolling around my lips; it lives there, it feels at home. I was always a scared child, anxious, what was I picking that up that no one else was? I was always called “over-sensitive” by my mother but I fought hard, independently for everyone to hear my voice. When I was young my voice was low, I was always the good girl, after my father died, the dynamics all changed.

It was the first time my parents had been to a party; my mother borrowed a maternity outfit from her friend Ann. When they got to the party, six weeks before my due date my mother wasn’t feeling well. Her friend Claire made her sit down, she timed the contractions. “It couldn’t be, it’s too early” but sure enough, they called the doctor and he said he would meet them in the hospital. Claire drove my mother and my Uncle Teddy drove my father, I don’t know why, either does my mother, the last survivor of the four of them.

When I was born hours later my mother looked at me and said I looked “like a plucked chicken.” My father said to Teddy” How cute can you get?” Since I was born six weeks pre-mature and only weighed 4 lbs and 6 ounces I was not allowed to leave the hospital. I was in an incubator until I could reach 5 lbs. I was in the hospital for 4 weeks. Back in the 50’s they didn’t the knowledge they have now; I’m sure no one held me except the doctors and the nurses. There were no advanced techniques back then. Moms and Dads weren’t even allowed to enter the room much less caress their little one’s tiny hands. I knew my father had visited every day, after work, he knocked on the glass that separated us, and smiled. My mother’s story has changed a little over time, she had my older sister to contend with and she felt “there was nothing she could do.” I think the error in judgment was telling me the story. What purpose did it serve?

My parents traveled a lot when I was a teenager leaving me alone in the apartment building. I would cry when they left and cry when I saw them wait outside for their taxi but as soon as their taxi left, I felt fine and strong. Being left is not one of my favorite things; I’m better at leaving. Even now, when my children, age 18 and 20 leave for college, I still cry.

When I was a child, every night, I would ask my father questions “Will anyone go to the hospital?” “Will there be a fire?” and plenty more. I needed that nightly repetition of answers to feel safe. That lasted until I was in the third grade when my mom did have to go to the hospital for a small surgery. I was hysterical. I remember pounding the blankets with my fists and screaming “We can’t play the question game because one of the answers is yes!”

When my dad died, eleven years ago, my greatest fear came true, he left me, he left us all forever. I had a very tough time letting go, he and I were so close but I got through it, no one really has a choice and with the slow passage of time I healed very slowly and it took a long time.I grieved openly, never one to hide my feelings. My children were very young, 7 and 9, years later my son confessed he thought I would always be that way, crying endlessly and being sad. I felt terrible and guilty but there was no way that overwhelming grief could have been hidden. He also got to watch me heal and recover, a life lesson.

Life is all about leaving, my children will constantly leave as they grow up, even their first step, as toddlers grinning proudly, they show us they need to leave and it is our job as parents to encourage them. They will leave me or we will leave them. It’s life, and death, sadness and happiness, insecurity and hope. Abandonment feels so familiar, like a dress, perfectly fitted to my body. I know love, I know pain, but abandonment is not only familiar, it feels like my skin.

My First Experience with Death

Heaven

Grief Lasts A Lifetime

When I was very young my best friend Claudine and I sat on the floor of my bedroom and played with my two turtles. Apparently I injured the turtle ACCIDENTALLY. I didn’t know it at the time because my father played doctor and I remember the turtle’s frail neck had been wrapped with white bandages. He smelled like the red, antiseptic medicine that my mom used on my skinned knees. I don’t remember being particularly upset over the sudden demise of the turtle but I do remember that my dad, who of course knew it was dead, pretended to nurse him back to health, for me.
That same loving man, my father, died ten years ago. He died New Year’s Eve 2001 an hour before my parents’ wedding anniversary on January 1st. I remember that horrible night in excruciating detail, I was sitting on my bed and the phone rang and it was my mother. “It’s over, it’s done” she said and I sobbed for what seemed forever and grieved for a very long time. I still miss my dad, I will always miss him. Sometimes I do get messages or signs from him and I believe in that. How do you recover from someone’s death? You don’t. Not ever. There will be a new world for you and it will be divided into before the death and after. You are now a member of a new club for adult children who have lost a parent and it’s not a club you ever wanted to join. You have no choice. Intense pain and grief get less frequent with time but there will always be moments, at least for me, when the pain feels fresh and raw. I was in Targets six weeks ago and I automatically turned into the Father’s Day card section. I remember I stood still and openly gasped. I had to hold on to my cart to steady myself. Only then did I stop and remember I had no one to send it to. I didn’t have a dad who was alive anymore in the physical world. Tears filled my eyes and I left the store quickly; my eyes were so blurry it was hard to see.

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Scents that Evoke Memories…

Nivea products

Image via Wikipedia

Cream And Cologne

The scent of Nivea cream brings back immediate memories of my young mother dipping her delicate fingers in the beautiful blue jar of white, fluffy cream. She would dab it on her face, while I, a young girl, looked on. My mom looked like a movie star to me as she blended the sweet-smelling cream on her cheeks and forehead and smiling face. The beautiful blue jar alone looked pretty and special and the lotion smelled like almonds and ocean and fresh air. It felt rich and luxurious, like heavy cream and velvet blended together. I grew up calling it Ni-vey-ah and of course, thought that was the name of it. It wasn’t until I saw a television commercial years ago that I realized it was pronounced Niv-ee-a.

I didn’t know, growing up, that my parents had European accents and that my sister and I were brought up with European manners, which was a big deal to our parents and apparently different from our American friends. We also repeated things that we heard from our parents as our friends giggled mercilessly; we didn’t know any other way. To this day I still mispronounce some words to the merriment of my own children who, of course, know everything better and correct me right away.

When I smell a man’s cologne (or shaving lotion as my dad called it), I think of my father, when he was alive, picking an after shave cologne from his collection of 13 different bottles that stood on a shelf like soldiers. Sometimes, he put on so much we said he smelled like a “perfume factory” which didn’t bother him one tiny bit. He was proud of his distinct, and different scents from all over the world. Even though he has been dead ten years, I still miss the smell of his cologne. It’s like the world is only one dimensional now, the scent of smell forgotten. Sometimes I will dab on an old cologne of my father’s on my wrists but it doesn’t smell the same. That smell, like everything else that made him my dad, was lost and buried years ago.

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Father’s Day

Self made rainbow, made in home garden.

Image via Wikipedia

I was in Target’s the other day buying things I really don’t need but that’s what is so great about Target. You pretty much can justify almost every purchase because it is so inexpensive. After my leisurely walk through the aisles I make a right turn to the card section to select a card for my dad. After a moment I felt a sharp intake of breath ; shock and horror set in immediately like an illness that comes on suddenly and wipes you out. I stop, stand still and I reach for the cart to steady myself.  My father has been dead for ten years.

I don’t see his image in the streets anymore like I used to do for years after his death. Father’s Day, however, is something that is so ingrained in me that every single year I do the same exact thing. I go automatically to the Father’s Day section. I don’t have a father anymore and the realization from that is always new and it always hurts like a fresh wound. Moments of past misery hit me like a strong wave that pulls me under.

Every year on or around Father’s Day I go to the cemetery and put round white stones on his grave site. I clean off all the debris, pieces of dead brown leaves that crackle and fall apart, twigs, black soot from a harrowing winter and I clean things up a little. I bring a bouquet of flowers when I go. It’s the least I can do for a father who bought me a single red rose every year on my birthday. I talk to my dad at the cemetery and I weep. I weep in anticipation of getting there so my tears start rolling down my cheeks way before I have arrived. I park my car in the same spot, sometimes I will walk a few steps and then come back, go in the opposite direction and return quickly.

This year, as if a gift from heaven, my son’s High School graduation is on Father’s Day and that makes me extraordinarily happy. I feel, actually, I know, that my father will be with us at the celebration. He will be there in spirit with his family, seeing his grandson graduate. Maybe he will be in the soft breeze that blows, hidden in the colors of a rainbow, in the light of the raindrops that may shower us, or in the rays of the beaming sun nodding his approval, showcasing his pride. He will be there.

I know I won’t have lunch with my dad again, or be able to listen to one of his “educational talks” or laugh hysterically when he used to take the vacuum cleaner out when he thought company was staying too long. It’s not as if I can have one last hug from him or a kiss on the top of my head. I can imagine his soft hands but I can’t feel them anymore, but I carry him around with me in my heart forever.

Oprah’s White Coach-(freudian) Couch

November 4, 2009

Oprah’s white couch, Oprah’s white couch, Oprah’s white couch…..oh sorry, I guess I was in my dream mantra. I see myself sitting next to Oprah on her (duh) white couch. Wow, I have made it! I’m sitting next to Oprah (why I am not sure). But, who cares? IT”S OPRAH, I adore the woman and the show but I do miss the spiritual themes. The fashion accessories to a boring wife-mom like me is just not happening. If she could find me a pair of high heeled shoes (love that red bottom, it smells so expensive!) I’d pretty much give up a lot. Not to mention, I also need that bra intervention, jean intervention, make up intervention (I wear none) and every other intervention you can imagine. I’m not dissing myself but to me, fancy shoes are clogs. Really. If she like my writing, I would kiss the floor of her studio, I really would. I don’t have one of those posters she wants people to make but I have some ideas on my head. Life goals? I never had any but I am a little left back on these concepts and it takes me about 15 years after everyone else understands. Things I want to do in my lifetime? NOT BE humiliated in a pottery studio. I want to be like Demi Moore in Ghost but the only time I took a pottery class, the teacher yelled at me because I was so slow and couldn’t even do the manual snake roll. I quit. Shouldn’t have, I admit but I did. NOT GOOD WITH REJECTION. I also had a life goal of twigs that I thought of last night but have no clue what that represented. Maybe it was a dream?

Had a restless night with my husband, sleeping next to me, and flipping and flopping like a fish could in a net. I shoved, I pushed, I was cranky, and ended up with my torn ligament (guilt) moving to the one little spare room we have.  Tried to sleep there but couldn’t. Needless to say when he got up at 6am -AND he didn’t know I had gone missing (what woman could do that?) I crawled into our bed, now empty and went to sleep until I heard my sister come in the front door to visit me.

Sister=Mother

the same personality. In my mom’s “mouse fiasco” my sister agreed with her. Not a surprise. I really miss my dad. He has been dead 8 years now and sometimes it still is a complete shock to me. I don’t think it ever really sinks in completely. I adored my dad and we were so similiar, we understood each other with a glance. He would NOT have given away MY MOUSE!! He would have defended that mouse…and me. The good old days. No one can ever say “I know how you feel” if they haven’t lost a parent.  Trust me I know. I still think I see him sometimes on the streets, sometimes I just wake up and shake my head and think but he can’t be dead, how can he be dead. Now Life is before and after. Grief is an all consuming thing, it does get better but does not ever go away entirely. Sorry to be a downer but…….it happens. and…I so want to make my new friend laugh. I think I better wait till next time.

One more bit of personal trivia: my husband said he read my blog last night. He said it showed my sense of humor and that it HAD TYPOS. Yes, my friends, you will see typos and grammatical errors but this is not a book ready for publication it is a blog so bear with me. If I have to think of correcting and revising you would have stilted Laurie and we know, Laurie can’t really be stilted or stifled. Enough of that….people who know me know I have a big mouth, I’m  a Libra and I stick up for justice. Also, I am SUPER protective of those I love, family and friends. THAT won’t change.  More later.