Tag Archives: mental-health

Just Look For It

cf0625b43ee446559aba5956b7d94eefIt’s funny how during all of the darkness over the past month, we have been able to see some light. A glimmer here a glimmer there help the heart heal.

We are both very big believers in noticing the signs that are sent our way, and we were not blind to them even during the darkest of times. Hope comes in all shapes and sizes, the key is recognizing it.

7ec60236c914e83fb309775560d1d961Sign #1:

The day after the nightmare began, I went with my daughter to see my husband at the hospital. While walking through the lobby we were greeted by a very friendly face. Sister Kate. The world is so small.

I know Sister Kate from my job, and I haven’t seen her in a couple of years. Our relationship is she is a patient and I’m in shock that this nice, warm, funny person is a Catholic nun. Where the hell were YOU when I was in school is ALWAYS my thought when I see her.

Sister Kate immediately knew from my haggard look that something was wrong. This was the first time I uttered the words “My husband tried to take his life” and the flood-gates opened. Her warm kind hug is just what I needed before heading to face my reality. Never underestimate the power of fate.

tumblr_mup91f3ipa1rlyeulo1_1280Sign #2:

We walked into the room to find my husband under 24hr guard by none other than an Italian grandmother from South Philly. There isn’t a pill on the planet that can compare to the healing powers of this woman.

The room was stark, nothing but a bed. My husband was stripped of anything that could possibly hurt him, and yet this woman made that room feel like home. I was waiting for her to pull a portable oven out of her purse.

Lena was just what this doctor ordered…. a mothers’ love. Never underestimate the power of an Italian woman who gets joy from taking care of a man. 

During this visit is when we learned that my husband had ZERO memory of the past 12 hours. If only the rest of us had that pleasure.

02d29afeeee80496a916e0fce4f13d61Sign #3:

The following day my son came with me. This time the guard on duty was Lorraine, a very feisty black woman. She was definitely sent for me.

This day was very heavy as we sat patiently waiting for information on the next hospital setting. The silence was deafening. Except for Lorraine’s gum cracking which was no doubt echoing throughout the halls.

My son was saved by a friend who called insisting on taking him out to lunch. Perfect timing!

As we sat in awkward silence listening to that poor piece of gum being assaulted in Lorraine’s mouth, we heard the words “who are you all voting for?” Of all the questions on the planet to ask, this was the one she chose to ask the man on suicide watch.

This is when the unexpected public service announcement was made. Lorraine would be voting for Trump. Why do you ask? Well, because she was tired of her neighbors collecting free money for their 5 children that she named Uno, Dos, Tres, Cuatro & Cinco. Fast forward to 11/9 … yep, this is one reason why.

63aede416ddcf86276a1249feea18f0dSign #4:

On that Sunday I went to see my husband at the next facility. No one could have prepared me for this step of the journey. I’m not sure who decided that people with depression should be dehumanized to feel better, but they need to be fired.

I left this visit defeated, broken and wondering where is that place Dr. Drew sends his patients and do they take Blue Cross? The lack of life in this place could make even the happiest of people second guessing the existence of rainbows. WTF! 

When I returned home I was flat. There was just nothing left to feel. I was done. With a weak smile for the sake of the kids of course. 

As my son was about to head back to school, he decided to raid my change jar to feed the parking meter in town. He took out a huge pile of coins searching for quarters.

7b4ffcb78c5b2c81a8b82968db1561f1Next thing I hear is “mom, didn’t you loose a ring?”  I had lost my wedding band on Thanksgiving 2015.

I have torn this house apart more than once searching for it. Trust me when I tell you I put the FBI to shame with my search efforts. 

Sure enough, there was my ring, on the floor, with a dime stuck in the center. My eyes could just about register what they were seeing. The dam broke, and 4 days of emotion exploded into the room. 

If ever there was going to be a sign that everything was going to be ok, this friends, was it.

Still dodging potholes while Enjoying the Ride! 

 

 

In The Blink Of An Eye

 

d00f5b0392e69910d109d4bd287f7f98We all know the saying. We’ve all used it to describe various things in our lives. Those of us with children know it well. Somehow watching our children go from bottles to red Solo cups overnight. 

The seasons always leave us with this phrase, especially summer, which seems to be running out of Dodge faster each year. One minute we’re watching fireworks, the next we’re trying to escape a pumpkin invasion.

The holidays use to leave us with this feeling, however, now that Christmas hits the stores before Halloween it’s no longer the case. The Christmas season officially lasts longer than most relationships.

These are examples of what I consider a natural course in change. They are as comfortable as that old sweatshirt in our closets. 

But what about those other moments? You know, the ones that leave us numb in disbelief. The moments that leave us repeatedly asking “what just happened?” large majority have been doing this since Tuesday.

All I know is that NOTHING could have prepared me for the life changing, blink of an eye, roller coaster ride I’ve been living for the past few weeks. By the wayI hate roller coasters in and outside of the amusement park.

October 12th was nothing short of a normal day in the life of me. Morning chores, work and home. Boring at best.  

I called my husband to let him know I was on my way. Everything was normal at 6:11 p.m. When I arrived home at 6:27 I was met by my daughter outside of the house. She said that my husband was screaming, cursing and acting crazy. Out of character was an understatement.

When I walked in to try to find out what was going on it escalated. So, I got the fur babies ready for a walk and off we went while that fire simmered down. If they could talk, maybe I could have gotten a heads up.

While out on the walk I received a text stating “I’m moving on.” WHAT?! 

I called home only to hear a voice I never heard before informing me that he is “done” “moving on.” I ran with the fur babies in tow, possibly airborne, with my heart in my stomach back to the house. 

64deb0ff996b4ace8f191bc355ccf955How did I go from saying “I’m on my way home”to screaming “What is happening?”

How did I go from hearing “I’m feeding the dogs” to “I’m moving on.”?

How did I go from walking my dogs to pulling pills out of the mouth of the man I love?

How did I go from a hum drum day to rushing into an ER?

How did I go from worrying about bullshit to making life changing decisions?

How did I go from thinking everything was fine to feeling like I was hit with a bat?

How did I go from seeing the strength in my husband’s eyes to staring at his weakness?

How did I go from a happy go lucky girl to a sleepless shell?

I don’t have the answers to all of these questions just yet, but I have hope.

I don’t know what the future holds, but I have faith.

I don’t know how to live my new normal, but I have an open mind.

I don’t know if we’ll be ok, but we have our love.

I don’t know how I was blind, but now I can see.

I don’t know if any of this makes sense, but I’m trying.

I DO know that I have 99 problems, but my new perspective won’t allow Donald Trump to be one of them, and for that, I am grateful.

Enjoy the Ride … one speed bump at a time!

 

 

No Apologies

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This quote has resonated with me with a force that I could not longer ignore.  Why? Because it’s truth on paper, or in this case … Pinterest. I’ve kept my distance on my Blog for reasons that were just not genuine and this little reminder brought me here today. I know… I know … I know. 

I haven’t been “too busy” to write. Lamest excuse evah!  Seriously! I’m not out solving world peace, I’m walking dogs and washing dishes. Just doing my thang. 

Old Habits Die-Hard

Old Habits Die-Hard

The truth is I’ve been away because old habits really do die-hard, especially those from our childhood. Those Mother Efers are like the Michael Myers of behaviors!  Just when you think you’ve beat them down, stabbed, shot, drowned, suffocated and tied them to a train track before dropping them into a 10 foot grave, someone comes along; lets out one little comment that resurrects these assholes into spring chickens! Once again proving the power of  our Words.

That’s right folks, I let the words of a small group of naysayers bring me back to a place I thought was out of my life for good. Obviously that was not the case. Apparently there are a few people in my world who read this Blog anonymously. Meaning they are not included in the 712 out and about followers. 

This handful of naysayers, who prefer to lurk in the shadows of my business and later zap me with my own words when the opportunity strikes are the real story tellers. That’s right folks, because every time they open their mouths to undermine my dreams, criticize or predict my doom they are letting the world know their story, not mine. So from this moment on not one more fuck will be given about their “opinion.” 

2ec12bf281d76a09e5095674b964e0f3My blog was born as a therapy session outside of my therapy session, not a NY Times best seller. It’s just a little speck out in the world that allows me to dump some long overdue baggage out the window and let  shit go. So if a handful of people can’t deal with that the solution is simple …. stop reading it. That friends is not rocket science. 

Letting go of some baggage over time has enabled me to start growing into my own badass self and I AM NOT APOLOGIZING for being ME just because a certain crew of negative people can’t seem to handle that truth.

I have spent 2 and a half years writing 180 essays on top of 3 years of counseling trying to bring my genuine self to the surface and it’s going to take more than a few mean-spirited naysayers to bring me down. Snap!

Now let me go dig into a nice big bowl of diamonds for dinner so I can continue to SHINE ON and Enjoy the Ride! 

 

No One Wants a Dead Cat

Daily Prompt: This Is My LIfe

If you could read a book containing all that has happened and will ever happen in your life, would you? If you choose to read it, you must read it cover to cover.  

I’m going to keep this simple…the answer is NO. Oh, please don’t expect some deep complicated thought on life paths, you’re not going to get that from me. This is common sense. For those of you who think on that higher plain of thought, I’ll break it down and do my best to make it sound much more complicated than it already is so you’ll understand.

By nature Human Beings are curious, so of course our first instinct would be Hell yea I want to know what’s going to happen! Then we take a moment, pause and think Wait a minute, didn’t something happen to some cat who was curious? Indeed it did folks, indeed it did. If memory serves me correctly, he perished in his own curiosity.

No, this little tale is not meant to frighten you into delving into normal curiosity, just the big stuff. To help you along in your decision-making I took time out my busy day to create this Curiosity Chart. I’m a visual learner, so I find pictures to be very helpful in the learning process.

RED LEVEL OF CURIOSITY (Killed the Cat):  This is for those times when you find yourself on vacation with your friends at a secluded mountain house. Three of your 6 friends have already been murdered, you have no phone service or means to escape. After having sex with one of your  remaining friends, because that’s what scared to death grieving people do, you get up to investigate a strange noise coming from behind a closed-door. Suddenly you remember the cat that perished, but continue to open the door as to give that dead cat a big fat FU. Well, guess what? You deserve the slaughtering you get. This is CURIOSITY WITH A SIDE OF STUPID. 

ORANGE LEVEL OF CURIOSITY (Mamed the Cat): Enter with caution…literally. This is for those times when the thought may run through your mind that “Hey Bobby or Mary’s significant other is hot.” First of all there is a good reason why that thought was in fact RUNNING.  This is never a good idea unless you’re looking to lose everything in your life. Penises and testicles have been known to go missing. The result of this level of curiosity lasts a lifetime…think twice.

YELLOW LEVEL OF CURIOSITY: (Injured the Cat): This is usually harmless, but it has been known to require an extended healing process. It’s your birthday and there is a BIG present on the table calling your name. You can either ever so slightly remove  a corner, peek and be ________. Big packages of any kind have been known to disappoint. The recovery time on this is fairly quick, depending on the level of disappointment of course.

BLUE LEVEL OF CURIOSITY (Causes Purring): This is my favorite! I use it every single day. For me this could be noticing a cute pair of boots on a stranger and simply inquiring “OMG I love your boots! Where did you ever find those beauties?” See we’re all smiling. This is a win/win kind of curious that traditionally leaves all parties walking away Purring. Again, the level of Purring depends strictly on the situation..wink wink.

See how easy that was class. Now, don’t open that book unless you’re fully prepared to handle all of the above levels of curiosity. Do you really want to wake up one day with the full knowledge that you are about to indulge into a full-blowed Red Level day? As curious as I am, I would have to answer this with a big fat … NO.

Stop living your life for what’s around the corner and start enjoying the walk down the street. Grant L. Miller

Purr….. Enjoy the Ride!

Regaining Sight

131378514099412954_fEDn93AT_cWell it’s official my case has been closed. I received the letter yesterday from my therapist that my file had been closed, but I would be welcomed back if I need services. Doesn’t the BUT get you every time? You’re not a loon right now, but you certainly have the potential for future lunacy.

Since I received the letter, I can’t help but think about all I’ve learned about myself over those 3 years. One of the biggest obstacles I overcame was feeling inadequate. This ran deep.

I spent my crucial formative years in the shadow of my sister. Some years were more like an eclipse, but we don’t need to get into details. My sister and I are very close in age, at only 15 months apart, which provided plenty of opportunity for comparisons. She was smart I had commonsense. She had confidence I needed approval. The list goes on, but I’m sure you get the idea.

Confidence: the quality or state of being certain :certitude <they had every confidence of success.

Of course I could dwell on the fact that it took me 40 plus years topcgoldmineWhen_will_ghosts_learn_to_use_computers_copy open my eyes, but what good would that do me. I have to accept that I wasn’t ready, or willing until recently to regain my sight. No regrets, just following the master plan. Now that I can see, it’s time to move on with the knowledge and understanding of what I learned from this journey. Oh, what a journey it was….

All of this insanity started to surface when my sister told me she had a reading with a Median. Apparently my dad came through during the reading giving her praise for what she had done with her life…a pat on the back from the spirit world. Needless to say the ghostly compliments pushed me over the edge. I didn’t get any praise in the real world and she is getting them from the efing grave!  I’m sure you can all understand how that might annoy someone with insecurity issues. The tears started, but this time they wouldn’t stop…Houston, we have a problem.

After many conversations, tears & laughter with my therapist I was able to recognize some very important traits about yours truly. Some good, some bad, but all me.

First things first: Children do not come with instruction manuals. For generations parents have been doing the best they can with the knowledge they have on hand, along with some instincts. In this case none. My mother was an orphan raised without role models and my father was raised by his mother, however was on his own at a young age. A perfect union of the blind leading the blind. Lesson: Don’t waste time pointing fingers at your parents, you’ll never move forward. Learn to understand and accept the circumstances surrounding the bigger picture. The whys’ are not important, they will just continue to hold you in the past. 

Be original

Powerful beyond Measure

Second: My sister was already the “smart” one placed high up on a pedestal at home, leaving me at the base. So that good old-fashioned Catholic school education provided a generous amount of reinforcement for my insecurities.The constant comparisons, along with a heaping side of humiliation became the pillars for my issues. Lesson: If you’re not happy being in the shadow, step out and see what the light has to offer. I guarantee you’ll be happier in your own light.

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. Marianne Williamson

Third: I spent YEARS focused on the wonderful labels that were placed on my sister, without recognizing my own. Labels are sticky do not apply onto people. While I was trying to live up to her labels, I was living down to my own. I was the quiet, nice, dependable one with a big heart. Not too shabby, right?  My need to be something I wasn’t brought out the worst in my good qualities. This caused me to be more of a doormat wall-to-wall carpet or an extreme pleaser. Lesson: Don’t waste time resenting what you’re not. Enhance your strengths, embrace your weaknesses and never be ashamed of who you are.

2603712254306951_LdPDqA7c_bFourth:  I always thought life was good up there on the pedestal. I imagined there must be rainbows, unicorns and butterflies just waiting to blow glitter on my sister every day. Who wouldn’t be jealous? What I didn’t see were the pressures to meet those high standards that were so generously distributed. Lesson: The pedestal is big enough for everyone. Never be afraid to use your talents. Live your life being as marvelous as God intended you to be and never dull your sparkle for someone else.

Fifth: Holding on, whether it’s anger or hurt is not healthy. Considering my extreme need to forgiveness-300x199please I had a debilitating habit of remaining silent, never confronting, never resolving and never trusting. So, who’s up for a big glass of poison?  Taking a long hard look at my past hurt wasn’t easy. But, doing it in a setting that allowed me to express myself constructively, understand it compassionately and recognize the role I played in each situation, I was able to let go. Lesson: Forgiveness and Letting Go are your best friends. They are a wonderful couple that always bring along freedom and well-being to hang out. This doesn’t mean you will forget the hurt, it means you now have the power to look back without that triple threat of bitterness, resentment and anger preventing happiness in its tracks.

Life is better, but I still consider myself a work in progress who is still learning while she does her best to Enjoy the Ride!

I Need Emotional Viagra!

Friday night I was beyond tired! After I convinced myself  it was a result of being awake most of the night before due to excessive snoring from the husband AND the dog; not the disease I diagnosed myself with, I went to bed.

Now, I was not only in the deepest of sleep, I was starring in a very STEAMY dream. I can only assume my subconscious was taking over from all that chatter regarding the blog I posted about the young man who died during the threesome. That is where we are leaving it folks…use your imagination, you are all very bright.

Well, my 15 minutes of porn star fame ended abruptly when the phone rang. My mother is 85 and my daughter was away for the weekend, therefore I’m certain that **RING** alone took 10 years off my life, not to mention what happened next:

ME: Hello?

Brother-in-Law:  Hey Leese I’m glad I got you and not my brother, I really didn’t want to deal with his attitude. I’m in prison. Can you believe I’m in prison? I went to go buy that tablet thing (iPad?), so I put some beer in an empty Gatorade bottle, because I didn’t want to waste it, (God Forbid) to ride my bike to the store and I got pulled over. Can you believe I got pulled over on a bike? I don’t know I guess the cops aren’t busy. Are you there? My brain is still stuck on the word “prison” as I headed down stairs. 

ME: Yeah

Brother-in-Law:  They found out I had a Warrant and locked me up. I was at the Police Station all day. Did you know I asked my brother to take me up here to take care of this Warrant and he didn’t have time? I told the cop that and do you know what he said? He told me I should have ridden my bike. Funny, I was thinking the same thing. It took like 2 hours to get here in a car and he expects me to ride a bike? Ya know what else, this Warrant is from 2003…come on..don’t these people have other stuff to do? I have to work in the morning so can you call my boss and tell him I’m in prison? Sure, lets just keep that shock factor going … just passing it on. 

ME: Sure

Brother-in-Law:  This prison is in a really nice area. Driving up we went through the town and everyone was eating dinner outside and having a good time and I was going to prison. Have you ever been up here?  It’s nice, you should have seen all the girls..dam. I always envisioned that whole “one phone call” thing much differently. I just always assumed there would be more fear and less chit-chat. 

ME: Oh yeah it’s very nice. Can I have your boss’s phone number?

Brother-in-Law: Here it is and just let him know I’m in prison (define “prison” because I’m starting to think that’s where I’m at right about now) and I can’t come in. Hey, when is the court thing? Monday? (that was directed at the guard) Ok Leese, well I gotta go, have a good night.

ME: Ugh..um..oh..okay..bye.

As I processed what just happened, I headed back to bed. Now, I bring you part II:

ME:  That was your brother, he is in Doylestown prison.

Husband: He woke me up for that?

ME: You never even moved!

Husband:  Ugh … I was sound asleep. Does EVERYONE realize at this very moment, it is a MIRACLE that I am NOT someone’s bitch in an orange jumpsuit writing this from the Prison Library?! 

No need to get the torches out ladies, I told him all about the dream, reminded him how tired he was and went to sleep. Please do not underestimate the power of a tired, angry woman! 

So, Saturday I found out that the Warrant was for a citation he received back in 2003 for sleeping in his truck. He was homeless when he was working for a contractor, so he thought it would be “ok” to park his truck and sleep at the job site. The problem was that this “job site” was in an upper echelon residential neighborhood. This neighborhood doesn’t even allow fast food restaurants to display their Golden Arches, because they’re hideous to the rich eye. So, lord knows they will frown upon someone using their vehicle as living quarters.

Needless to say, he has had his fair share of trial and tribulations. He was homeless for about 8 years, due to drug & alcohol issues but he always seemed to trudge along. As of today he has been drug free for 3 years, has his own place, a job, bank account and wheels (his bike).

Trust me, he is aware of the poor choices he has made and the damage he has done to himself physically and mentally. The regrets are deep, the struggles are daily and the amends will last the rest of his life…one day at a time.

So, until tomorrow he will remain in prison, where apparently you are allowed to use the phone all day. It is now 2:00 pm and I just hung up from the 5th call of the day, in which he informed me there is no record of a Warrant. It appears there was a “clerical error”, but he’ll have to wait to see a Judge in the morning. Deep breaths everyone…deep breaths. 

I think today is a good day to start being curious, not judgmental and just…….Enjoy the Ride!

Burning the Bra

This morning was one that really had me thinking …..”How Old Am I?” 

Starting off the day with a *BAM* is not recommended, but it’s ok because I had a plan. I will just go through the motions…coffee pot on, take dog for a walk, shower, get ready and roll. Well, I was side tracked when I could not find my glasses. Ok, upstairs, downstairs, every table, chair, bed, couch…blah blah blah..they are nowhere to be found. The word “crazy” is an understatement in this moment of total blindness! I do a second search…nothing. Finally, someone notices that I am perhaps LOOKING FOR SOMETHING and asks just that….well needless to say in this moment I am frazzled beyond recognition, have been searching like a Navy Seal for 40 minutes and still haven’t gotten a shower…so, I bark…..”Yes!, my glasses and I am going to die if I don’t find them!” Response: “Did you look on the table?”   In this moment I did the right thing in order to avoid the arrest, trial and being someone’s bitch in prison, I refrained from acting on impulse, and just let out a very weak yes as I went to sit down and THINK……THINK…..THINK…..Well, I’ll just wear readers, deal with the headache and call it a day.

The epiphany! When I came downstairs I smelled something, which was my son’s hoodie, that was next to the phone charging and that was the last thing I did before I took my glasses off to go to bed.  So, I had that in my hand as I turned on the coffee pot, which led to the laundry room, a full hamper and a load of wash. The washer!…..I run down the steps, turned off the cycle, remove the 5,000 pounds of wet clothes and TA-DA the glasses!  I put them on the desk, tell the oblivious man in the room “I found them” as I went to get a shower.

It was a very good thing I was standing under water when the knock on the door came, along with the words “do you want me to help you look for the glasses?” because I am confident I would have burst into flames at that moment. Although I would look hideous in an orange jumpsuit, being someone’s bitch was looking good.

As I was driving to work today, in the MLC/Enlightenment Vessel, I started to think about how I allowed myself to get so frazzled over something that in the scheme of things, really wasn’t worth all that anxiety, not to mention a possible prison term. Honestly, I said “I am going to die if I don’t find these glasses.”  For god sakes am I 3 years old dying if I can’t get an ice cream? What was I so afraid of that I thought I would die? Answer: Disappointing my co-worker and boss.  We were short handed and if I couldn’t see, I couldn’t work which would leave them in a a terrible position.

You can have 3 things in a lifetime.  You can have possessions, friends and peace of mind.  “For me,” he said, “the most important is peace of mind.”  Dalai Lama

We would all like to have peace of mind, I know I would, but like this morning I lost it. This happened because when I woke up I had a plan..coffee, dog, shower & go, I didn’t expect the unexpected and tootles to any peace of mind, I was scared.  I attached myself to something that wasn’t happening.  My plan wasn’t working out; I can’t find my glasses; I can’t see and I’m going to be late.  My fear of disappointing others is my attachment. I was afraid of not living up to my self-image of being the dependable; reliable; competent; in control, someone who gets the job done person.  This is an attachment that goes waaaaaayyyyy back to childhood, hence the acting like one in the moment. It goes back to  trying desperately to shine in the shadow of others and not feeling adequate. This attachment bra is being BURNED for good.

I realized in the last few years, through Marianne Williamson..”Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.”  All those years I spent in the shadows weren’t wasted, they allowed me to appreciate my light now and …Enjoy the ride!

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