Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Hollow Penance

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

I hope it is not the holidays, but neither do I want
it to be the medication not working. I thought I had
gotten past the era where the holidays make me so
sad. I wonder how long I have been this way?

There is so much about me I don’t know.

Have I always been sad during Christmas? Have I
always been so afraid to be alone? Why?

Have I always felt so completely and utterly helpless?

I have made some horrible mistakes in my life. I have
done things that hurt so many people. Bad hurts.
Permanent hurts. When I get in this part of me where
I am now, they all scream at me. I cannot make them
go away nor do I believe I should be able to make them
go away. They are my penance. The suffering I deserve
for the stupid things I have done.

I used to think they were the worse consequences of
my actions. I am no longer sure of that. Now I wonder
if the worst consequence is the one I pay every day.

The loneliness. The feeling of nothingness. The untouched

I feel so hollow inside. Like if a fire came lone there would
not even be enough sustenance to keep it burning. My
outer shell longs for the touch of someone who yearns
for me, who wants me. Someone who enjoys my touch
and my taste. My skin feels like one huge irritated
nerve ending. Like the simplest of touches would send
me over the edge.

It is funny how he wanted me so badly when he couldn’t
have me. Was it the challenge that excited him so?
Was it the fact I was younger? Was it a mid-life crisis that
I gave up everything I had ever known for?

I don’t think I am this strong anymore. I am just so tired
of playing make believe.

Monday, November 27, 2006

My Love Affair with Cigarettes

I have smoked some type of MENTHOL cigarette since I was 13 years old except for two 9 month periods of my life when I was pregnant. Even then, it was not out of the goodness of my heart that I quit, it was mainly the fact that it was so hard to smoke with your head in the toilet for hours at a time.

I have not had one since Sunday (yesterday as I write this) November 26 at 10:10am (on my way to church). I told my Heavenly Father if He would have me quit, He was going to have to take them from me because I am too weak to lay them down. They are too closely connected to my depression and it is almost like letting go of a friend to whom I have turned for comfort for the past 33 years.

I slept most of the day yesterday so it wasn't so hard, but today I am at work and I keep thinking all the "junkie" thoughts:

"I am 46...the damage is already done. I may as well go ahead and enjoy what time I have left".

"Who cares if I can't get on the treadmill and breathe at the same time!?!"

"Do I really want to sing in the choir this badly?"

"What if it makes my depression worse?" I guess this one is the main one for me right now.

Friends, if you pray - please do. If you don't, send me some warm fuzzies or dark chocolate - either one will do.

Thursday, November 16, 2006


Dr. Mama has a post on her BLOG about a former patient who just recently drank herself to death. It spoke about how this lady cared about nothing other than her alcohol. How she had no interest in her daughter nor her granddaughter. That made me think back (uh-oh)!

I have never considered myself to be a bleeding heart or anything like that. I believe we all pay for our choices in life and if my road is a little rockier than yours has been, then I just have to get over it. Regardless of that, I think about things a little differently as I grow older.

This lady no doubt hurt a lot of people, probably most of all her grown child. I know at 46, I still yearn for my mothers’ acceptance and love, although I have stopped holding my breath. With an alcoholic parent, you can just about say you have no parent.

What about the alcoholic mother? Who was she? What lived inside of her that her best option was to attempt to keep it smothered through the use of alcohol?

I have struggled with depression since 1992, and in the past year or two, anxiety has entered this vast “playground in my mind”. It isn’t enough that when my medications don’t work (and sometimes eve when they do) I spend the majority of my days wishing I wouldn’t wake up and crying for no apparent reason, now I can’t go out in public without my heart pounding and my chest feeling like it will explode while the sweat pours off me.

For instance, a few weeks ago my husband and I joined the church we had been visiting for some weeks. In our area, in our denomination, you join a church by walking down front and telling the pastor you would like to join the congregation. After he talks with you for a moment, he will have you stand there by him at the front of the church, while he announces to the church and God and everybody, that this "fine couple" would like to join, where they will then all smile and clap their hands or say, “Amen” or whatever.

Now I would NOT want to see a video of what I must have looked like at that moment. Not that our church videos it services’, but still. We stood there about 10 minutes while he introduced us and then afterwards everyone walked by us and shook our hands welcoming us to their church family.

Had it lasted one minute more, I can assure you someone in that line would have had to go home and shower, because I was doing all I could not to hurl. Sweat was pouring off me like a breastfeeding mother in a room full of hungry babies. (I'm sorry - my attempt at humor falls so short some days).

I was shaking and I could FEEL the red in my face where I fully expected blood to come cascading out of my pores any time. I felt so bad for the church folk, because though I didn’t look up at them while the preacher was introducing us, I am sure 90% of them were smiling at us. I’m standing there, sweating, shaking, and thinking, “Look at them!! You're being rude! Look at them!! Smile at them!!” but I just couldn’t. I looked up over the sea of faces once, for a split second, and the room started to spin. I figured whether I stared down at the floor the whole time, or puked on the folks sitting on the front pew, either way they’re gonna think “She’s a nut”.

Now I have not always had this problem. I am a former cop. I was a substitute teacher in our high school for several months at one point. Folks, neither of those are jobs for anyone with the severe anxiety I suffer from. Teenagers can eat a substitute alive and then ask for more afterwards.

I have no idea where this came from, nor how to get rid of it. Yeah I had an abusive sucky childhood and then married an abuser at the tender age of 15 and was immediately “discouraged
(spelled = forbidden) from seeing my family and friends and basically spent the next few years alone with a child and a husband.

I dropped out of school at 16. No prom. No dating or going out with my friends or normal phases of growing up. We had no phone, no neighbors, one car, and were five miles to the nearest pay phone. But even with all my baggage, I thought once you were old enough and mature enough, this stuff didn’t bother you; didn’t leave any lasting effect on you. If my problem is not from the warped life I had– I don’t know what caused it.

I will tell you this though; there was a time, a few years back, when I began to drink. It began when I first realized my marriage was over. I was 38.

Before I knew what I had done, I had slipped down that slippery cliff where I was drinking a couple of nights a week then driving 52 miles home – completely & totally wasted. When I finally left my marriage, and was living in a little unfurnished apartment (yep – I walked away with nothing after 24 years!), I was drinking every day that I didn’t have to work. Alone.

I never enjoyed the taste (does anybody really drink because they like the taste???). I never sipped either. I SLAMMED. Scotch, gin, whiskey. No little cute drinks with umbrellas, just pure straight alcohol. I drank with one purpose in mind...
I wanted to be numb. I wanted the ugliness to go away, and it did for a while, even as I was worshipping the porcelain god at least the memories were far away. The voices that belittled me and told me how worthless I was my entire life ceased to speak at least for a little while.

I look back and cannot believe I risked other peoples’ lives by driving that way. I KNEW better! I deserve every rotten comment I may get on this one! I didn’t want to hurt anyone else, but every night I would drive down that interstate thinking how could I aim my car just right so that it would run into one of those huge pillar things and kill me without it looking intentional. I wanted to die so badly but I didn’t want to embarrass anyone doing it.

I am a middle age, white-collar professional. You would never have looked at me and thought of me as an alcoholic, someone who would leave work, get totally wasted, then drive 50 some odd miles home.

I thank God that He protected those around me during that period of time. I also thank Him for choosing to protect me through my stupidity, and allowing me the grace to not drink again.

Folks, I’m not condoning how that lady lived and died, I’m just saying I surely can understand it. Sometimes, you’ll do anything to get rid of those pesky little voices, even if it requires throwing up afterward.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006


No more work related this one has been removed.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Battered Women & Childhood Bullying

My daughter was one of those kids who it seemed wore a "Pick on Me" sign throughout their childhood. In case any of you have not been in that position, believe me when I say it is a horrible place to be.

There was a period of time in high school that she rode the bus home from school. There was one girl in particular who seemed to get a big kick out of picking on her. This same girl was in a crowd of girls who that same year jumped on another teen and hurt her pretty seriously. I'll call this girl "Jane".

I saw this story in our paper this is about "Jane":

A woman whose toddler was beaten to death by a former abusive boyfriend four years ago died Sunday after being beaten by her live-in boyfriend.

City Police arrested and charged Boyfriend “John” (Name removed) with murder Sunday. The murdered woman, “Jane”, (Name removed), 28, died at approximately 8:45 a.m. of a traumatic brain injury in the neuro intensive care unit at City Health Medical Center, the County Coroner said.

Paramedics responded to a 911 call from the couple’s home at approximately 2:30 p.m. Saturday and found “Jane” unresponsive. It appeared as though her boyfriend had beaten her, and City Police were called in to investigate, Police said.

“John” and “Jane” were the only people at the house. Police said “John” admitted to hitting “Jane”, but didn’t know what started the argument.
The couple had known each other all of their lives and had been living together for about two years.

“John” was employed at (Name removed), but “Jane” hasn’t worked consistently since her son died in 2002.

“Jane's” 3-year-old son, (Name removed), was severely beaten and dumped in the woods about 300 yards from his home 4 years ago.
Her boyfriend at the time, was charged with the boy’s murder.

Police spokeswoman said “Jane”, who previously worked at the hospital in our Medium Size City, had been suffering from depression since her son’s death, and “Jane’s” sister had been caring for her daughter.

“John” is being held in the Medium Size City Jail. He is expected to be served with a warrant and arraigned in front of a municipal judge at 8 a.m. today.

I tried my best to teach both of my children to never, ever pick on other kids. I taught them to even try and befriend someone they noticed was being picked on mercilessly.

You see, I too wore that "Pick on Me" sign for several years of my childhood. I learned at the very beginning of Junior High to "hold it" to keep from going into the restrooms at our school. The restrooms were a dangerous place to find yourself alone in junior high when I was a kid, so I would wait until I got home every day.

I am so saddened to think of this young woman, a woman my daughter went to school with, dying that way after losing her baby son to an abuser four years earlier. What was it about her that attracted her to this type of man? What was it that made her feel she deserved no less than to be beat on? What made her stay? Is it the same thing that made her pick on other kids when she was young?

I lived with an abuser for 24 years. I know all too well what makes a woman stay like she (and I) did. I got out though.

Friends, teach your kids to be nice. Teach your sons (and daughters) that hitting is NEVER an option, even if you think "Mine would never do that", teach them anyway.

Bullying is a horrible thing. The old diddy I used to hear growing up, "Sticks and Stones May Break My Bones but Names Will Never Hurt Me" is not true either. The scars they leave are sometimes permanent.

And please, teach your daughters they deserve better.

I hope Jane and her son are rocking this very moment in one of Jesus' big ole rocking chairs. Rest in peace Jane.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Women Who Grow Beards ...Just For The Fun Of It


If I cursed, I’d say more.

I have just read a post on a blog

that I read every single day. I love the blog. I have learned a lot from this guy’s posts. But durn....I am appalled this morning.

On this post, he wonders if one of his NICU babies’ mom could not have done something to “hide” her mustache. Gee....wonder if she hasn’t thought of that?

I wonder if she has never noticed the stares or the snickers the goobers of the world have sent her direction? Reckon she doesn’t KNOW she has facial hair that is usually reserved for the opposite sex?

Come on fellow earthly you really believe for a minute that women with hirsutism ENJOY having it!?!?!

When I met my oh so handsome husband 6 years ago, I was terrified at the thought of the first time he ever stroked my face. Petrified by the worry of what he would think when he finally did. I thank God that he was not shallow like a lot of seemingly intelligent people seem to be, otherwise he would not have gotten to know me. He would not have hung around and grown to love me. He would not have proposed and married me 3 years ago. He would not have seen the woman behind the hair.

I have had a beard since I was 17 years old. You remember....17...a time when what people thought of you meant so blooming much? I also have broad shoulders and other characteristics more suitable for a man. I didn’t ASK for them, but I have them.

I did NOT put in my order to have junk going on that would cause snickers and stares and comments to be made toward me, but I got them. I didn’t request it take me five years to conceive, but it did. I didn’t ask for the other maladies that go along with PCOS but I have them.

Would these same goobers laugh and poke fun of a woman who was born missing an arm? Would they laugh at the guy who was born blind? Those things are just as “different” as a woman with hirsutism.

You know one thing though? There is one very important thing I learned from having hirsutism that presented itself at such an early will NEVER, EVER hear me make fun of another person. Not for any reason. It never ceases to amaze me how some very intelligent and otherwise nice people can be so....well....ignorant.

PS...To Kelley - Hon I have thought no more about anyone who commented on that post. I promise. At my age, I have learned to take such things with a grain of salt because a lot of time words are take then wrong way, etc. I hope your dear son never has to hear or see any crude people as he ventures out into the world, but chances are he will. His mom will prepare him and help him to see when someone is being kind of ignorant about his disabilities, that they are the ones with the problems, not him. Take care.

To Wendy Lou....Thank you for your kind words. I am so glad the lazer worked well for you. I would willing to bet my last dollar that your lessons in life have led to a kind, caring lady. Next time someone mentions you're "spoiled"...just grin and let them think you are. Leave 'em guessing!