Both My Privilege and Heartache

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As excited as I am about moving, I find myself missing my mom now more than I ever dreamed was possible.

Since my mom’s death, my relationship with my daughter has strengthened. Also, my brother and I are closer than we’ve been in many years.

Since we were mere kids, really.

(Sometimes shared grief pulls people together; sometimes, it pulls them apart.)

I am thankful but they both work long hours and are busy with their own lives. My brother has a family of his own, so I can’t be constantly messaging him with every little fart that happens in my world.

I scramble to find somebody to tell the highs and lows to, besides my boyfriend. Nobody is able to fill in the empty hole in my heart. Like everyone else, he’s often distracted by his own issues (and smartphone.)

I sit for long periods of time and contemplate who I should try to reach out to.

Who will give me their uninterrupted attention?

Those last few months of her life, when she became so ill that she couldn’t even leave the couch, she was often grumpy (shit, if I had suffered as she had, I’d have been grumpy as fuck too) but she was there with her unconditional love.

I have yearned for a father figure ever since my sweet, hilarious Uncle Jerry moved farther from me and then sadly passed away back in the early 2000’s. He stepped up to the plate after my dad died in 1986.

It’s occurred to me recently that I’ll never be able to replace her, although nobody could ever come close anyway.

But despite that knowledge, am I now yearning for a mother figure?

For fuck’s sake, I AM a mother. I’m an old lady now, not some young woman, like my daughter.

It’s both my privilege and heartache to want both of my parents back with their beams of love to light up my life again.

All Of That Garbage

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After telling my new therapist the entire asshat story (the condensed version due to our 50 minute session time) she simply said one sentence.

“Aren’t you glad that you’re not underneath all of that garbage anymore?”

“Hell yes,” I replied, noticing that my shoulders felt a little less heavy than when I had walked into her office. “I did, in fact, love him once upon a time.”

But that love has now dissipated and a combination of indifference, mingled with intense disgust has taken its place.

She asked me when I started to realize that my marriage was a sham, abusive, hard to focus on exactly what the problem was, a dark, shadowy union.

“When I started getting sick in 2011. But of course, I was in denial. Just two years after we got married. He told me at the end that he felt entitled to do whatever he pleased because I got sick.”

An angry, sickened looked flashed across her face. If I hadn’t been paying such close attention, I would’ve missed it entirely.

“How long were you two together before you got married?”

“Around 7 years. We’d lived with each other for just over 5 years.”

She nodded, writing something down in her notebook. I always wonder what it is that therapists are penning next to my name. Is it something profound or just a random doodle?

Just like the secret of how long it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll Pop, the world may never know.

“I thought I knew what abuse was from my daughter’s father.”

“But there are many kinds of abuse,” she said sagely.

“Yes! Insidious, secretive…shady and manipulative.”

“Those are some big words.”

We smile at each other and I’m filled with gratitude.

I genuinely like this woman and she’s damn good at her job.

It’s always a wonderful feeling when you meet someone who understands you, even if they’re getting paid to do so. She’s in the same office that my doctor is in and once I move in early March, they’ll both be quite a bit of an ass haul away.

But if you ask me, the gas, distance and extra travel time are worth it.

An Introverts Heaven 

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This is a page from an unused coloring book that I found in my mom’s room.


Half-past midnight, the day is past

My favored time, finally, at last

The world is sleeping, quiet resides

And where my true contentment lies

No phone, which startles, always ringing

Instead, background music, with musicians singing

My dogs are snoring, the fridge is humming

No tasks or errands that I need be running

Brilliant colors, on my page, emerges

And a zen sense of peace, spontaneously surges

For I’m blissfully alone, a introverts heaven

This chaotic world, with its constant chatter, deadened

I choose colors, bold and bright

So thankful to God, for this night

For being awake when all is calm

These precious moments serve as a balm