Note to my inner child.

 Suzy, I’m looking at a photo of you when you were coloring. I wanted to tell you a few things. When you grow up you will become a beautiful, strong, smart, funny human. Unfortunately, there will be a lot of pain in your life. I know right now mom just left. I think you know it wasn’t your fault, but I wanted to tell you again. Mom had her own demons to deal with and didn’t have the right tools to figure them out without hurting others. She loves you. I hesitate to say that because it’s still hard to believe that she would leave such a kind, creative little girl such as yourself. If I was your mom I would have squeezed you to pieces every day and been wildly proud of you. You have always had a level of compassion in you that came naturally. Your heart is big. I think that’s why it hurts so much when people let you down. You didn’t deserve to be forgotten or disregarded. Your light keeps getting dimmer because no one was there to be on your side and make you a priority. It happens.

What happened to you?

What happened to me. parents divorce latch key kid alcoholic heartbreak dog runs away anxiety attacks depression what happened to you? death in the family get sober special needs child stay sober miscarriage special needs child dog dies kids are born latch key kid alcoholic special needs child anxiety what happened to you? fight with the school fight with the doctors fight to keep going depression got up stayed up can't breathe stay sober what happened to you? helped someone understood someone blamed someone forgave someone loved someone try to keep going got out of bed kept moving special needs child kept breathing kept loving helped someone enjoyed myself felt joy felt sadness felt heartbreak, in my gut discovered gratitude helped someone else helped myself discovered compassion special needs child stopped breathing remembered how to breathe taught someone else how to breathe.

Kitchen Floor

I remember the kitchen floor in great detail because of that day. Linoleum, white, avocado green and harvest gold. The geometric pattern was loud and detailed. I have memories of her on her hands and knees scrubbing the floor dutifully each week. She wasn't going to scrub that floor anymore. My brother and I sat in the kitchen chairs while my parents stood in front of us. My father was telling us that our mother would be moving out. He told us that they didn't love each other anymore.  As he continued to talk my nine year old gaze was fixed to the linoleum. My eyes followed the pattern from one end of the kitchen to the next., I don't remember anything else about that day except the floor.  I remember a few months later my uncle Jim and my cousins Mark and Brian helping my mom move into her new apartment. I skipped down the hallway of the smelly building, excited to see my mom's new "house". It hadn't hit me yet what all this meant. It hadn't hit me ye

Be Still?

 I just googled "trauma and loss". then "Grief and loss", then "loss over and over". No answers for me there. I recently talked about Dermot to some hockey moms who asked me questions about him. How old is he now? Do you have someone stay with him when you go out of town? What does he have? What is his prognosis. I appreciate these questions. I welcome the opportunity to shine a light on our experience, but I also underestimate the power of saying the answers out loud. more than once in a day. its real, it always is, but when you say it out loud, other people hear it. Other people ponder the possibility. that is scary.  I spend the majority of my time "running " from these feelings of reality. running from the constant loss that permeates my life.  I have "be still" tattooed on my body as a reminder to stop running, but it's the hardest thing for me to stop. I run in various ways. I actually run, 3-7 miles every few days. I run by k

Choose joy?

We are five minutes out of St. Cloud on Highway 15, at a stop light I contort my torso to reach back to put the oximeter probe on Dermot's tiny index finger. He sounds like an old fashioned coffee percolator...O2 78, yikes. "Dermot, you have to cough for me buddy!" no response. I'm on the highway, looking for the next turn off. One more mile, no coughs, the oximeter is beeping double time now. Finally, I turn off the highway and into the Walmart parking lot in Sartell. I keep the car running because of the heat, get out and enter through the sliding van door to the back. I move around Cookie who is laying dutifully on her bed and reach for the deep suction catheter in his supply bag. Got it. Still panic beeping. I carefully thread the long, thin plastic tubing down Dermot's mouth and turn the suction machine on. Sucking, sucking, a moment of breath holding and up comes a giant glob of mucus all over his bib. That's what he needed. O2 level? 89. Really? S

A snapshot of inside my head.

Covid 19 racism is alive and well no school stay at home save money gaining weight my son has no friends my other son has to stay home for the rest of the year i am constantly trying to find my purpose I miss my mom I miss my friends I miss places I grieve for my former life I am not alone, but knowing that doesn't make it better Society is in upheaval people are dying my oldest son is never home I'm afraid most days I just started online shopping again I just stopped weighing myself everyday I need a fucking haircut its really hot outside today I'm trying to plan my tasks for the day and i never know where to begin my youngest is always on his screens he screams at me when I tell him to do his chores around the house he is really unhappy a little bit of laundry, then i jump to the dishes I should really walk the dogs I should really make Ryan walk the dogs maybe I should take them to the dog park is it too hot for the dog park? sorry the doo


Lipstick might be the cure right now. My mother always says: "let me put some lipstick on so I don't look dead." I remember visiting my grandma in the hospital when she was actually dying and she always had lipstick on. So acting as if might be the solution right now. I've been angry since I drove home from Dermot's last doctor's appointment seven days ago. His nurse was convinced there was something wrong with him, I was not. At the time I thought I was just being selfish because the thought of going back to the same building where we had been last week and the week prior for and eleven day stay made my skin crawl. AND, I told myself that I would trust the nurses perspective more, so we were off to the doctor for a mysterious rash/swelling foot thingy. Appointment was at 10 am, which meant I'd miss both opportunities to workout at my new favorite gym. Please let me explain that moving my body a lot everyday  is essential to my mental health. We were