Sunday, June 30, 2013


Yesterday, I got a nice envelope from a friend --- she sent me a part of her local paper about NASCAR because she knows I'm a race fan.  It brightened my day more than I can express.  Because somebody thought about me.  Somebody remembered.

This incredibly black Pit which I've been mucking around in for all these months completely isolates me.  There's no energy, no interest in going out, in contacting people.  I have absolutely nothing to contribute to a conversation or a gathering.  Because I don't do anything.  Except spend my first couple of waking hours filling out new job applications and following up on old ones.

So people forget about me.  Maybe they would have forgotten anyway --- there's no way to know.  But it seems, it feels, like 90% of the people whom I could once count on just aren't there anymore.  They were good and loyal for a while, but after a bit, they got bored.  Disinterested.  They were getting nothing back from me, so they stopped sending anything my way.

Which only drove me deeper into the Pit.

I can't tell you how many letters/cards/notes I have intended to write, only to choose going back to bed, or staring blankly out the window for a while over telling someone I was thinking about them. I've been no better than my abandoners.  I shouldn't expect what I'm incapable of giving.

Two bloody years into this thing, though, I don't know what else to do.  For the last several months, I've performed for my children, pretending I felt better, laughing. . .  None of it has been true.  But they don't need the Yoke of Mom around their necks when they're each trying to get their own, independent lives going.

Performing, though, exhausts me.  And I am emotionally, and even physically, spent after every phone call or visit.  So, again, there's nothing to give anyone else.

The people who have left me aren't going to be reading this.  I wish I could have them back in my life, but my mind is incapable of strategizing, of figuring out a plan to re-connect.  Those of you who are reading this have not left me.  You have sent me newspaper clippings and interesting Web links and prayers and hugs and it is not hyperbole to say that some of those things came on days when I had a full bottle
of pills in one hand and a full glass of water in the other.  And those things made me put them down.

You have saved my life.

I don't know when I'm going to be well enough and strong enough to give you the thanks you deserve.  Just, please, know that I am so grateful to you for not letting me go.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

I Must Repeat This Daily.

1. We cannot make our children happy.
2. We cannot give our children high self-esteem.
3. We cannot make friendships for our children or micro-manage their friendships.
4. We cannot successfully double as our child's agent, manager, and coach.
5. We cannot create the "second family" for which our child yearns in order to facilitate his or her own growth.
6. It is increasingly apparent that we parents cannot compete with or limit our children's total immersion in the online, digital, and social media realms.
7. We cannot keep our children perfectly safe, but we can drive them crazy trying.
8. We cannot make our children independent.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Stephen Speaks For Me

I rather love Stephen Fry, and he has written a magnificent essay on depression and suicide.  You can read it in its entirety here.  The parts that mirror my experiences and feelings follow:

But I can still be sad. Perhaps you might go to my tumblr page and see what Bertrand Russell wrote about his abiding passions (it’s the last section of the page). I can be sad for the same reason he was, though I do so much less about it than that great man did. But I can be sad for personal reasons because I am often forlorn, unhappy and lonely. These are qualities all humans suffer from and do not qualify (except in their worst extremes) as mental illnesses. 

In the end loneliness is the most terrible and contradictory of my problems. I hate having only myself to come home to. If I have a book to write, it’s fine. I’m up so early in the morning that even I pop out for an early supper I am happy to go straight to bed, eager to be up and writing at dawn the next day. But otherwise… 

But the fact is I value my privacy too. It’s a lose-lose matter. I don’t want to be alone, but I want to be left alone. Perhaps this is just a form of narcissism, vanity, overdemanding entitlement – give it whatever derogatory term you think it deserves. I don’t know the answer.
I suppose I just don’t like my own company very much. Which is odd, given how many times people very kindly tell me that they’d put me on their ideal dinner party guestlist. I do think I can usually be relied upon to be good company when I’m out and about and sitting round a table chatting, being silly, sharing jokes and stories and bringing shy people out of their shells.
But then I get home and I’m all alone again.

Friday, June 21, 2013


1.  My daughter turned 21 Monday.  It was the first time we haven't seen each other on her birthday.

2.  I'm in a sock-knitting mode right now, with orders for 4 adult pair and 2 baby pair.

3.  The socks order came with specific color requests, which meant I had to go through all my sock yarn.  I had NO idea I had that much.

 4.  I have hypothyroidism, and have been prescribed thyroid hormones as of Tuesday morning.  Hopefully, this will help some with my lethargy, headaches and weight.

5.  We've been having daily rounds of thunderstorms, many pretty bad.  I don't mind them, but a couple of the animals hide themselves away, not to be seen for a while.

6.  I've been drinking lots of tea lately.  The rainy weather gives me sinus headaches, and warmth makes them better.

7.   A honeysuckle vine has begun growing through my huge gardenia bush.  The smelll you when walk  outside is divine.

8.  Going through some papers yesterday, I ran across last year's Knitters' Hunk and Knitters' Chick brackets.  Not too terribly long until this year's contests will be getting underway.

9.  A former KH winner now has his wine for sale online.

10.  Now that I'm only feeding myself, I can buy all the Tostitos Hint of Lime chips I want, without hearing complaints about them.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Another Father's Day

My son just asked me if I am okay on Father's Day.  I told him, in truth, that I am.

Neither my Daddy nor my husband wanted a big deal made about Father's Day.  They both wanted to be remembered, of course, but big to-do-s weren't necessary.

I don't think my husband thought too much about himself on Father's Day;  he thought of his father.  I know that's how I feel on Mother's Day.  It was always about her, not about me.

My son also said, "I don't think I ever told you I'm sorry you lost your husband.  I am."

That's a terrific Father's Day present for a mom.

Thursday, June 13, 2013


My daughter came back into town today.  It was the first time she'd been back, and it was great to have her here, if only for a little while.  

She's about to start her new job, so her brother took her back tonight, just a massive, strong, scary thunderstorms started raking down from the north.  He said the drive back was absolutely brutal, but everyone's in their own places tonight.  Except the power is out in my daughter's apartment.

Finn and Rupert were SO happy to see here again:

Tuesday, June 11, 2013


Since Hannah has moved away, I'm keeping really strange hours.  Lily and/or Madeleine still wake me up at 7 AM to be fed, and I get up, only to take a long, wonderful nap from early to late afternoon.  That makes it hard to go to sleep as early as I had to when I was getting up to take her to work.

But it means I'm awake right in what has always been my wheelhouse: late, late night.  I am more energized (though "energy" has an entirely different definition in this Pit) and think more clearly at this time.  I have good ideas.

But I also think black thoughts, and they seem darker at night.  Like realizing I'll never teach again.  Two years plus out of the classroom, I can't imagine anyone hiring me.  And teaching is what I do, it's who I am.  And, since I haven't been accepted for any other job in all that time, I don't think I'll ever be given an opportunity to be something else.

Sunday, June 9, 2013


My Aunt Jig, one of Daddy's older sisters, died Friday.  She was 94, so it wasn't unexpected, but death is always a shock.  She was the last of Daddy's siblings.  Of the 12 aunts and uncles on that side of my family, only one aunt is left.

Friday was also the anniversary of Dale's death.  It's been 15 years.  Briton posted the following on facebook that day:
15 years ago today, my father died. Now, I have chronic depression and anxiety, an overwhelming fear of abandonment and the unknown, and a constant, desperate feeling of isolation.

Trying to handle a lot this weekend.  Feeling completely incapable.  Will not be able to make it to Nashville for the funeral, which quadruples the guilt.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Or A Trial Separation

My head and I have been together for 53 years.  It's been a mostly good ride.
However, if it continues to treat me the way it has treated me this week, I may seek an annulment.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Not Profound

But kind of interesting.
Saw my first lightning bug of the year last night.  Weird that two of my very favorite things in the world,
lightning bugs

maple seeds
are harbingers of two of my least favorite things in the world --- Spring and Summer.

Sunday, June 2, 2013


It dawned on me driving back from moving Hannah into her new place that I have never lived alone in this house.  I've been alone, but never lived alone.

'Til now.


For some reason, this year I am constantly moving Christmas stuff around the house.  I'm not sure why things are so unsettled, but they...