With My Mouth Closed

I’m struggling to even know what to post here lately.

It wouldn’t be so complicated if he didn’t read the spiral sometimes. If he hadn’t lashed out in a comment still sitting in the moderation queue. But he does, and he did, and I find myself unable to speak.

I’m tired.

One sister was here this weekend. The other two weekends before. And I am so so grateful they were here.

He is not here anymore. He’s moved. Not just out of the house, because that happened several months ago, but out of the state.

But he’s also not where he is supposed to be.

I asked for distance – emotional distance, but I’m struggling with the physical distance being there and me still feeling pulled in to the emotional whirlpool.

He was supposed to get where he was going on Thursday. He didn’t. On Friday, a friend from there messaged me asking me if I knew anything about where he was.

He’s not missing – not exactly. There has been some communication between him and this friend now. But he’s still not there, every day with a new excuse, and every day I’m expecting a call from the hospital or the police department to tell me he’s gone.

He’s not here. But I’m still worrying about him.

I’m just so tired.

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Hope and Bravery and Beginning Again

Once upon a time, when we were newly arrived in North Carolina by way of two years in Alaska, I was frustrated and stressed and we were out of money.

See, when we left Alaska, I resolved to myself that I would no longer teach. Teaching was something that didn’t bring me joy. It brought stress and frustration, but it also brought money that was much needed.

And so, when we got to NC, I didn’t apply for teaching jobs. I subbed, but my focus was elsewhere – I was looking for something else.

One day when I was at a store trying to squeak through our grocery money without sliding past my mental budget, I saw a pendent – a cheap little DIY necklace thing – that just said HOPE.

And that is what I needed during that time.

I used a tiny bit of saved up change and bought it, and wore it, trying to infuse HOPE into my core by osmosis.

I held it when I applied for a job at the rec center. A job that would be part time and low pay but would allow me to still do the fun parts of teaching without the politics and the mandatory testing and would get my foot into the door to a more full time job with benefits.

I held it after my interview.

I was holding it when the school that Brandus worked for called me, and offered me a teaching job. A job with benefits and good pay and would allow me to be at the same school at him.

I had taken it off by the time the rec center called and offered me the job.

I felt betrayed. I felt that the HOPE I had been hanging on to so hard had turned around and stabbed me in the back.

That was years ago, and the memory still stings a little. I threw that little necklace away shortly after.

But a few weeks ago, a friend gave me another pendant. She held out a little bag and I swished my fingers through a small collection of tokens, and when I drew out my hand I was holding a tiny circle that just says BRAVE.

I strung it on a blue cord in honor of the woman who gave it to me, but I’m not wearing it. I carry it in my pocket sometimes where I can pull it out and hold it and remind myself of what I am and can be.

Because again, by osmosis, I’m hoping this sinks in beneath my skin and wraps itself around my backbone.

I need to be BRAVE right now. I need bravery, and hope, and a little weakness, too.

Because on June 26, 2015, when thousands of people were rightfully celebrating their right to marry being honored, I was sitting in my car and thinking about divorce.

Divorce is a hard, scary word. One that gives me images of crying children, lonely evenings on the couch, and me reaching for a phone to call and share something funny – but stopping, because I no longer have that right.

Scrolling through my social media that day was both wonderful and painful.

Wonderful, because so many of my friends could now legally marry the people they love. And so painful, because all I could think of while so many families were beginning, was how mine was ending.

I’m sad and hurting, and still so angry, although I’m trying to move past all three of those into acceptance and distance.

Please be patient with me, universe. I’m still working things out in my own head. But I will make it through. This sucks so epically on every level, but I’m going to be just fine. Eventually.

Because I carry some strength with me, through my family, and my friends, and the little token in my pocket that reminds me that I am BRAVE.

brave

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Simile

My life feels like a rollercoaster.

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From the Trenches of Alcoholism

lifering-med

Alcoholism sucks.

I know I’m not speaking from direct experience, but as one with a ring side seat, let me assure you that is absolutely awful.

I can tell now. I know what to look for. And that fact alone has been hard won. It’s come from emergency gallbladder surgery two years ago. From the call from your work a year and a half ago. From a grand mal seizure on the Santa Clause train in front of my entire family this December. From when your skin was yellow. From when the police brought you home.

I see it. The lack of sense of time, the sleeping, the illogical requests of your kid, the urge to pick a fight with me, the fact that you are avoiding, and are unable to track a sentence sometimes.

The fact I asked you to leave.

I know. I can see it.

IT SUCKS. It sucks for you – I know it does. I KNOW it’s a disease. But from this side, too – it’s hard and painful and exhausting. I feel like I can barely trust myself, much less you.

I feel like I’m the crazy one.

Should I have let you stay? Should I live with the fear that the next time, I will know for sure that you were so far gone you were unable to hold a conversation, and yet still put our son in the car?

No. I can’t. And I won’t. And I’m sorry you can’t always seem to understand why I’ve made these choices, but they are mine to make. I will not risk our son.

And believe it or not, I am trying not to risk you.

Will this be enough to get through to you that I fear for your life? Your health?

I’m fighting to keep my own head above water. Alcoholism is drowning us both.

I’ve thrown you the lines and the flotation devices I can find, but now it’s up to you, because I’m about to go under if I try to keep you afloat. I have to put on my own oxygen mask first.

Reach for the life raft. For your son, if not for yourself or for me.

photo credit: Rescue FAIL via photopin (license)

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Insert Sponsor Here: Craftsy

I try not to mention ads too much, although I do run them in the sidebar.

Yes, it costs money to run a blog, but in all honesty, I’ve been running a few ads for years and I’m pretty sure I’ve made less than $20 total.

But, the brands I do run ads for are ones that I personally use, and I figured I’d talk about them, especially since it’s that or think about my personal life and I just can’t right now.

So! Craftsy! Craftsy is a web site that offers a whole bunch of classes in a whole bunch of different creative areas – stuff like Floor Loom Weaving, Cooking With Cast Iron, Building a Raised Bed Garden, The Secrets of Free-Motion Quilting..seriously, tons of stuff. I’ve taken several of the quilting classes offered, and there are videos of steps, personal interaction with the instructors, and downloadable patterns and pdfs. They’re fun!

They also offer pre-made kits and supplies, and I’ve had good luck with the ones that I’ve bought.

And, starting today, they are having a pretty damn good sale on class prices. So check it out!

Craftsy

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