Tag Archives: self-help

Is the Pain of a Black-eye Easier to Understand??

Is the Pain of a Black-eye Easier to Understand??

As I was making my morning coffee my friend Sue called.  I could hear it in her voice, she was teetering on the verge of sobs… so I sat down with my cup of coffee and listened.  She said:

 

“My heart is absolutely breaking, and there are days when I just can’t bear it!  

How could a decision I made over 32 years ago, still affect me so intensely today??  

I never would have thought the man I chose to marry and have children with, could cause so much pain.  

But it is that one decision, made by an optimistic, naive young girl, which keeps me connected to a man who turned out to be so dangerous.  

There is such irony in a union giving life to three most precious souls… being the same conduit used to hurt those very same lives so deeply.

How can I so deeply regret a decision which gave me the very things in life for which I am the most grateful.

I am so torn with raw emotion, for it was this man who helped create the most important parts of my life… my children… and yet, I will forever feel guilty that I have exposed them to his destruction.  

When they were little, everything was great.  He was usually out-of-town and the physical distance from us, provided a convenient and beneficial separation.  Our exposure to him was limited and the kids and I thrived best under those circumstances.

And when he was physically present, he was never truly “available”.  He’d be obsessed with his latest project….

It was nice when this project was something to enhance our home, like building a nice bookshelf or refinishing the basement.  

It was odd when it was pushing himself in some personally physical way, like hitting golf balls at the driving range well into the night, until his hands bled from deep penetrating blisters. Or never missing a weightlifting session at the gym, no matter who or what might get in the way.

However, It was the worst when his obsession or project appeared to be for the benefit for another, and yet was truly a vehicle to entice another’s involvement to purely “benefit” HIM.  These situations were the most difficult to detect, and by far caused the greatest harm.   

And sadly, each one of my children has experienced this harm in their own individual way.  

Through the years, especially after the divorce, It became almost impossible for me to shield them from this harm.  I am only grateful… that the older they get, it appears overtime the clearer this whole phenomenon becomes to each of them.  With clarity come truth… but this is a truth no mother wishes their child to face.

Yes, divorce can be painful… yet it doesn’t have to cause irreparable harm.  

But, unknowingly, I chose to marry a man who (some 23 years later) would make sure our divorce pretty much decimated everything and everyone in its path.  

A man who got the divorce he wanted and then became obsessed with turning it into a project cause unending suffering and pain… all the while balancing the fine-line of trying to justify reasons for his “actions”.

And after years of living through all of this, and realizing he. will. never. stop… I am forced to face my greatest horror… my greatest guilt:

 

I.  was. not . strong. enough. to endure the destruction… rise above it all… shake myself off and protect my own kids from the painful, dangerous fall-out!!!

My survival instincts were weak.  

I took financial and emotional hit after hit.  I was dragged into one legal court battle after another… and with what little energy or hope I had left… I was barely able to keep our (mine & my kids) most basic needs met.

I didn’t say or do the right things to make my kids feel safe, like the smart psychologists who write articles on dealing with divorce always suggest. Unfortunately, I was in survival-mode and was functioning out of desperation.

I failed.  I failed at the only thing I ever cared about….

I failed to be the best mom I could be.

 

And for that, my heart is broken.  And there are days when I just can’t bear it!  

And I hope one day, maybe my kids can forgive me.

And maybe one day, I can forgive myself.”

 

 

 

Facing Mother’s Day with a Broken Heart

Facing Mother’s Day with a Broken Heart

Welcome Back!

Back ? Home = happy place (physically & mentally)

Bridges = help us get there

 

There I was, minding my own business in the Pasta aisle at Walmart, deciding between Vermicelli and Capellini, when I experienced the creepiest encounter ever… like a visit from the Ghost of Christmas Past.

 

I heard her behind me. And before I even saw her, I was transported 17 years back in time.

She was desperately trying to soothe her fussy infant in the grocery cart as her 10 and 4 year old were peppering her with non-stop questions, requests, demands and poking each-other.

 

She looked exhausted… Physically, Mentally and Emotionally.

There was a spit-up stain on her shoulder and yesterday’s mascara was faintly noticeable… adding a deeper shade to her already dark circles.

 

Our eyes met and communicated the words we didn’t need to speak.

I so badly wanted to validate her pain, so I smiled gently and softly said:

“It’s hard”.

And that’s when this poor young mother lost it.

 

Tears rolled down her cheeks as she choked out the words…

“It’s SO HARD.  

I wish my husband realized just how hard it is.  

But he’s never home!  

He works late hours, so I can stay home with the kids… and I never get a break!  

I’m totally drained……..

It’s just SO HARD!”

 

And then she looked at her kids who were obviously her pride and joy and as she wiped away her tears she smiled and said…

“But, it’s worth it… It won’t ALWAYS be this hard… when they grow up it’ll be much easier”.

 

And that’s when I lost it, and as tears streamed down my cheeks, I choked back the words I wanted to say and turned away so she couldn’t see my reaction.  As I stared at boxes of pasta through blurry tears, I felt an empty pain deep in my heart .

 

I wanted to tell her… “Oh my dear, you have no idea just how much harder it can get. Years after you’ve given Everything there is to give, your husband just may happen to come home after “that business trip” or “working late” one night and ask you for a divorce.  

 

He will walk away with his high paying job, executive level earning power and retirement fund, while you walk away with the job description of ‘Housewife and Mom’ added to your resume.

 

And then he just may drag you through the family court system for years, constantly trying to negotiate paying less and less in child support until he manipulates the legal system to eventually pay you nothing at all… and along the way he’ll cause you to pay thousands and thousands in lawyer fees.

 

Then just when you thought your heart couldn’t break anymore… Your kids will see you as the Crabby Complainer and their dad (who, by the way, was busy “working late” their whole childhood) as the go-to parent. He’ll hold all the cards, and bribe them with promises of buying them a car when they turn 16….and…

 

And when your teenage daughter strikes the final blow, by telling you she’d rather live with her dad because you’re barely scraping by and he can easily afford to buy her whatever she wants… including a generous makeup and clothing allowance, you’ll wonder if it was really all worth it.

 

And then after living under his negative influence for a while, she’ll be blinded by the illusion of his spin on reality and there will only be a glimmer of your sweet little girl left behind. She will gladly align with him and forget who you are.

 

But, instead I chose to wipe away my tears and simply wished her a Happy Mother’s Day and she wished me the same.

 

Little did she know, this Sunday, my Mother’s Day will be far from anything I’d dreamed of or hoped for.

 

There are many moms who may not receive that Hallmark moment of recognition and gratitude from their children they long for.

 

There are many different reasons why this Mother’s Day may be filled with disappointment, heartache and sadness for many moms.

 

Remember, sometimes simply knowing you’re not alone makes it all much easier… along with a dish of delicious pasta and a nice bottle of red.

 

For a Friend

For a Friend

Welcome Back!

Back  Home = happy place (physically & mentally)

Bridges = help us get there

 

It all started a few days ago.  

I was writing on my laptop, enjoying my first cup of coffee, when I heard something in the other room.  It sounded like something was hitting the window.  

 

I walked into the family room to check it out, and sure enough, a robin was repeatedly flying into the window.  The minute it saw my reflection it flew away.  

 

I was relieved it hadn’t hurt itself and went back to my writing.

 

No sooner had I returned to my laptop, when I heard the same persistent sound again.

 

Bang……..………..…(wait for it)………………..Bang…………..(and again)……………… Bang!  

 

I walked back into the room and the robin flew away again.  

I thought:   “Geez, poor bird.  It’s gonna hurt itself.”

 

I figured by now this bird must’ve realized it keeps hitting something hard and obviously impermeable and finally flew away somewhere else.   

 

I went back to my writing.  And, I kid you not, within minutes, it started again.

 

Seriously?!?!  

I was shocked.  How could a bird be that stupid…or that stubborn???  Then I recalled hearing stories about how an animal’s instincts can cause it to repeat behavior over and over, even if it results in physical injury or worse.

 

And we’ve all heard the quote:

“Doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting different results is the definition of Insanity!!”

 

WTHeck!?!? I didn’t have the time, energy or desire to deal with an insane robin!

Every time I walked into the room, it would fly away… but, it would come right back and keep doing the same stupid Banging!!

 

I couldn’t keep walking in and out of the family room all day.  

 

So, I observed its behavior from a vantage point where it couldn’t see me.  

There’s a tree next to the window, and this robin sits on its branch and then takes a header into the window… knocks itself silly and then does it again!!!

 

I wasn’t sure how to help this poor bird, so I tried a few ideas:

 

  • I taped some foil to the window— this didn’t help, it just moved to a different section of the window!

  • Then I designed a replica of myself (like a scarecrow) using chairs, pillows, blankets, etc— this didn’t help.  I added a fan to give the materials some movement— no help!!

  • Then I cut-off the branch it was sitting on— it just moved to another branch! (I thought about cutting down the whole tree, but deep down I knew that wouldn’t help either.)

  • I screamed at it: “What is WRONG with you… are you TRYING to kill yourself!?!?”— no help.

  • Then I opened the window (which has a screen)— Voila, this seemed to help, but we’ve been having a lovely winter this spring and the house was getting a bit chilly (considering the 19* temps outside) so I ultimately closed the window.

By this time it was dusk and Thank Goodness the silly bird retired for the evening!!

 

The next morning I’d forgotten all about the bird until… it started AGAIN!!!

Bang………………………………..Bang………………………………….Bang!

 

WoW!!! It certainly was a consistent little bugger.

 

This time I tied up the window-blind strings and positioned the fan to blow them around. And the Good News is, it seemed to solve the problem.

 

There is just one issue.  This contraption has to be turned on constantly until dusk.  If I forget to turn it on… I am reminded by a persistent:

 

Bang……………… ……………..Bang………………………………….Bang!

And I know there may come a day when this latest fan/string contraption won’t help anymore and I fear finding that bird lying dead under the tree.

 

This whole ordeal has really ruffled my feathers.

No, I am serious!  

 

It is unnerving to try and help another when their behavior is going to hurt them (or worse), and most of your intervention does absolutely nothing .

 

The moments when I waited to see if a new preventative method worked, were absolutely grueling.  My heart would sink (& I’d inevitably feel like a failure) every time I’d hear the Banging start-up again.

 

The very worst letdown was when I thought I’d finally helped, because things quieted down… but then inevitably it would start again.

 

I’m always looking for the silver lining, or lesson learned from facing challenges in life.

And this situation unfortunately mirrored the greatest challenge we all face as human beings:

   The pain and frustration we feel

by watching those we Love

repeat behaviors

that hurt them or can eventually kill them.

 

The hardest thing to endure it to stand-by helplessly.  

And yet that is all you can do.  

Because if they want to Bang into that window… They will… And there’s nothing you can do to stop them.

 

Lesson 101 in loving someone, who is actively engaging in harmful behaviors… is to know there is very little you can do.  It is up to them if they want to change or stop.

We. All. Have. Free. Will.

 

These past few days I learned some important reminders.  

 

Here are some things you can do:

  • You do what you can to help.

  • You realize there is no magic wand to make it all better (no matter how much you beg, scream, cry, plead, wish, hope or pray).

  • You learn to live with your feeling of helplessness.

  • You accept you have no control over another’s Free Will.  You surrender trying to impose yours.

  • You eventually Let Go (and let God).

  • You remember to take care of yourself.

… a little birdie told me so!  

 

 

Keep It Simple, Keep It Real

Keep It Simple, Keep It Real

Welcome Back!

Back  Home = happy place (physically & mentally)

Bridges = help us get there

 

 

Keep it Simple…. Keep it Real.  

Sounds easy, huh??  Well, turns out (sometimes) it’s not so easy.  

Sometimes we become trapped by the Illusions of Life, and it’s hard to break free.

 

I recently had a birthday.

And like many people, my birthday’s not just a time to indulge in  

the-once-a-year-guilt-free-dark-chocolate-cake-n-mint-chocolate-chip-ice cream

it’s also a time for self-reflection.

 

This year I reflected upon the importance of “Keeping it Simple and Real”.  

Reminding myself to slow down and strive for clarity, balance and harmony.  

And remembering, sometimes the challenges in our lives, often teach us the best lessons.

 

I was a newlywed during the Reagan Era and was swooped-up into the,

More Is Better Mentality.  

Reaganomics resulted in the greatest Wall Street Bull Market since the 1920s.  

It was an Era of Great Prosperity… generating more wealth, for American families, than any other time in US History!!

 

And in keeping with Madonna’s (1985) mega-hit “Material Girl”… my lifestyle mirrored the relevant lyrics of the time:

Cause we are living in a material world

And I am a material girl

 

I checked ALL the boxes:

  • Town & Country McMansion 
  • Luxury Cars
  • Country Club Memberships
  • Black-tie Galas
  • Exclusive Resort Vacations
  • More & More & More!!

So, what insight did I gain from acquiring so much stuff during the 80s???

#1.  It was exhausting.

#2.  It made life chaotic, complicated and confusing!

#3.  Sometimes material things become a replacement for the

        more meaningful things in life.  

 

About a decade ago…there was one day that clearly put it all into perspective for me:

 

I was at a stop light and looked at the woman in the car next to me.  

She was lovely and had a look of luxury.  

Her hair perfectly coiffed, awesome sunglasses, expensive jewelry

and she had that confident smile and overall look of contentment.  

I noticed she was driving a Mercedes-Benz

and made a mental note to myself:

 

“Of course she’s HAPPY…

she’s living the dream in her fancy Mercedes,

with all of her  fancy “things”…”

 

In contrast, I felt worn-out, stressed, empty….

genuinely wanting.

It was easy for me to believe she had what I needed.

And as the light turned green, and I glanced back to the road ahead of me…

I noticed the Mercedes-Benz symbol on my own steering wheel

of my brand-new car.

 

Turns out for me, More wasn’t Better and Fancy things weren’t the answer!

 

Shortly after that day of reckoning…

I was faced with a choice between the two (material things or meaningful things), and I handed them all over in exchange for ___________.  

   (You Name It… Just Fill-in-the-Blank)

 Freedom

  Harmony

Reality

Clarity

Peace

                                                                          Truth

                                                                            Etc…

 

I handed it all back to the hollow person I shared that life with… (on a Silver Platter in fact, LoL) and I had No Regrets.

 

All of those Things were just providing smoke n’ mirrors to create an illusion and confuse me into believing, it was a Good Life…

when the truth was, I was in an empty relationship and I wasn’t living my life authentically.

I longed for something simple and real.

 

Don’t get me wrong… some people can live that exclusive “Town & Country Lifestyle”,

authentically and happily  (or at least I think they do??)…

it just wasn’t a good fit for me.  

It all became a band-aid and distraction to cover-up what was really missing…

what was truly important.

 

Of course, I still love pretty things and adventurous travel… But, I feel (at this ripe old age) the Bridges I’ve crossed have helped me to finally arrive Back  Home

Full Circle, where I belong, where I want to be.

 

Ironically, my sister sent me this Birthday Card which pretty much sums it up!!

.  

 

Keep It Simple, Keep It Real & Smile Along The Way!!!

 

Spoiler Alert… (A Mother’s Prayers)

Spoiler Alert… (A Mother’s Prayers)

 

Welcome Back!

Back  Home = happy place (physically & mentally)

Bridges = help us get there

 

Spoiler Alert: This story has a Happy Ending!!

 

Someone posted the illustration below on FB the other day and it really hit home with me.    

Since having my three kids, I will admit I have never spent more time on my knees praying for their protection and well being.

FullSizeRender (11)

 

Even before I had kids, I always felt the most disturbing scene in a movie was when Shirley Maclaine’s character is pleading for pain medication for her dying daughter in Terms of Endearment.    

OMG, I can’t even post the actual clip here, because it literally tears my heart right out.

termsofendear4

The Fact is, when it comes to Our Children it seems

Worry and Love 

are synonymous and synergistic.  

Then again, I grew-up in a Sicilian/Spanish family, so I’m not sure if that increases the intensity of this synergistic effect.

♥ 

This all got me thinking about an important story in my life.

 

I delivered my third child, a daughter, the day before Thanksgiving.  It was my third C-section and this one was very complicated and difficult.  But, there were many reasons why she was my miracle baby.  

 

I remember every moment of her First Thanksgiving dinner…  

I was filled with gratitude as my precious baby girl and I snuggled together in our hospital bed.  She rested peacefully in my arms feasting on mama’s milk, while I looked forward to every delicious pump of my Morphine drip.    

 

And back home, my parents were having the full Thanksgiving dinner I had prearranged (from Wegman’s Catering) with my two young sons and husband (now, ex)… whom I will call “Hex”.

 

Before the family came to see us following their pumpkin pie dessert, in walked my favorite nurse to see how we were doing.  

I don’t remember her name, but I will call her: Madea because… She. Was. Madea.  

God, I LOVED her!!  She was AWESOME, Funny and Protective.  

 

On the day of my daughter’s delivery, Madea overheard Hex bragging about the important 10-day business trip to South Africa he’d be leaving for in less than a week, and how cool it was going to be…blah, blah, blah.  

 

This really ticked Madea off, and she confronted him about… this not being the time to leave his wife at home with a new baby and two other kids ???

 

Madea… Was. Not. A. Fan. Of. Hex. and she was not shy about her disdain.  Every time they ended up in the hospital room together, it was downright entertaining to see her behavior.  

 

The day we left the hospital,  I wish I had a tape recorder for the tongue-lashing she gave Hex.  It didn’t phase him one bit, but I stifled my laughter so many times, I almost popped my C-section staples.

 

My parents were going to stay and help me take care of everything when Hex was gone. I was having a particularly painful recovery and then one night (just 2 nights before Hex was supposed to leave) we noticed the baby had a fever.  

 

A fever at less than a week old requires a trip to the Emergency Room and I just about lost it.  

 

Hex, my dad and I took her in, and after some preliminary tests…  our fears were confirmed. Her fever was bacterial, and if she didn’t get IV antibiotics and the source of the infection quickly found… she could die.  At the very least she would be admitted to the hospital for a minimum of three days.

 

Well, (even though this diagnosis might not have been deserving of such a response) I’m pretty sure I was channeling Shirley Maclaine’s scene in Terms of Endearment as I was on the ER hallway payphone trying to explain what was going on to my mom.  

 

I would guess those viewing this conversation, may have thought everyone I had ever loved, had been wiped out in some horrific accident.

 

Even though it was 9:00 pm, my second phone call was to our priest who came right over and blessed our baby girl with holy water held in a hospital styrofoam cup.  

I will never forget how grateful I was for his presence during (what I believed to be) the worst moment of my life.

I silently prayed to God (as I had been doing from the moment that thermometer showed a fever) and suddenly,  I felt calm.

 

Sure, I was still worried to death, but I knew she was in the Palm of God’s Hand and I felt a sense of peace.

 

 

I told Hex he should probably call his boss and explain the situation.  He said, since my parents were already in town to help, he felt comfortable still leaving on his trip.  (over 8,000 MILES away from US!!!).  

 

I wanted to march right up to the Maternity Ward to see if Madea was on duty and bring her down to the ER with me, because I knew this was a fight I couldn’t deal with.  

Luckily, my dad who had been a tower of strength for me during this whole ordeal… suggested Hex just make the phone call to at least “inform” his boss about what was going on.

 

When Hex returned from making the phone call, he looked terribly disappointed.  

 

He said his boss told him… To. Stay. In. Town.  That his family needed him now, and the company would simply send someone else.    

 

I wasn’t sure if I was glad or sad with this new revelation because, as serious tests (like a spinal tap for god-sake!!!) were being performed on our little baby, it was obvious his mind was somewhere else.

 

It was after midnight when we were finally moved up into a private hospital room. My dad drove back home and Hex and I accompanied our baby.  

 

In the room there was one metal crib and two reclining chairs.  Hex took one look at that chair and immediately asked a cot be brought in for him because… He. Could. Not. Sleep. In. A. Chair.  

The kind (and now bewildered) nurse said, as soon as they got the baby settled… she would address his needs.

 

It was late.  I was still very sore post-C-op, and with tubes and wires now attached to our little baby, it made nursing her quite a challenge.  I’ll never forget… there was Hex, laying on his cot, with his blankets pulled up to his chin.  

 

And while I struggled to lean into her crib, so I could feed our baby… he asked me to “turn off the lights” as they were too bright and keeping him awake.

 

That night I asked him to go home in the morning and please send my mother to the hospital.  

 

For the next two nights, my mother helped me navigate every feeding… even in the middle of the night.  

And late one night, while watching a Christmas Special on TV, as my mom slept in the reclining chair next to mine and my baby girl was sleeping in her metal hospital crib…

I felt the peace of God and gratitude fill my heart.

 

 

 

It turned out my baby girl was very young to present with Kidney Re-flux.  She was on daily antibiotics for the first two years of her life and had a couple more hospital visits… but luckily outgrew the condition before she was three.

 

Even though this ending was a happy one… my heart tears apart for those parents who don’t get the happy ending they pray for.  But that… Is. A. Topic. For. A. Whole. Other. Blog!

 

The Bridges I used to get through this health scare with my daughter were:

  1. Pray

  2. Know who to ask for support

  3. Pray

 

Please share the Bridges you used to get you through similar situations…

 

PS… Hex left for South Africa on day three.

 

 

Navigating Through a Miscarriage

Navigating Through a Miscarriage

Welcome Back!

 

Back  Home = happy place (physically & mentally)

Bridges = help us get there

 

This post is for those facing the changes and challenges that come with Miscarriage.  If this doesn’t pertain to you, please pass it on to someone it can help.

 

This post illuminates my personal journey Back Home after a miscarriage.  My children are all from my first marriage, and this story begins back then.    Almost 20 years later, it is still hard to revisit the roller-coaster of emotions.

 

When does life start?  When is the life one is carrying considered a “baby” ?

 

The answers to these question differ from person to person.  

 

 For me, it is the minute I find out that I am pregnant.  At that moment, I have already included this precious little soul completely into my life.

 I have embraced its presence as a member of our family… allowing myself to daydream about everything from its first birthday party to all the other lifetime milestones we will share.

 

My Story:

This baby was especially exciting for me.  My husband and I had once shared the desire to have a big family, but after two children, he decided our family was complete.  However, I did not agree.  I felt deep in my heart that our family was not complete, and finally convinced him we were meant to have at least one more child.

It was a sunny autumn day, I was in my second-trimester and we brought the boys to my check-up to hear the baby’s heartbeat.  I was excited to have our sons (ages 3 & 9)  hear the miracle of their tiny sibling’s heartbeat.

The doctor came into the room, and as she put the special speaker stethoscope on my belly, she asked how my pregnancy was going.  I was very proud to tell her it was just perfect!  

I felt great, my “baby-bump” was bigger than expected (she had just measured it at TWO weeks ahead of schedule) and I joked that this baby was probably going to be much bigger than his two brothers were.

The boys were busily chatting with their dad & I waited for the heartbeat “whoosh-whoosh” sound, which I knew would quickly get their attention.  The doctor finally said she was having trouble picking up a heartbeat.  

I confidently replied, “You will.  It’s there… just move the stethoscope around a little.”  But, to my bewilderment, she put the stethoscope away while mentioning something about fetal movement.  She said even though everything was probably fine, she was ordering an Ultrasound just to make sure.

I didn’t know what to think.  I was convinced if she had just tried to find the baby’s heartbeat a little longer, we’d hear it loud & clear.                                                                                                                                                    Instead, we were getting a sitter to stay with the boys and heading to an Ultrasound appointment.

At this point, I wasn’t one bit concerned for the baby.  This pregnancy had proven to be my easiest one yet.  Other than being tired in the beginning months, I had quickly regained my energy and was feeling healthy and strong.  

I was actually excited to get a “peek” at our little one and was hoping to bring home a new, updated sonogram photo to show the boys and put up on our refrigerator next to the first one.  

 

That photo (seen above) was taken at the very beginning of my pregnancy & the baby was just a tiny shadow.  But, by now the baby would be so much bigger & we might be lucky enough to even find out if it was a boy or girl.

And then the bough broke.  The Ultrasound technician said there was No heartbeat.

My baby was Not alive and a part of me died right there and then as well.

That is when the roller coaster started the climb up the first hill.

Shock was the first emotion I felt… quickly followed by denial.  This could Not be true!  This baby IS healthy and strong!  I would have KNOWN if something was wrong!  

It made NO sense.  The baby had to be alive!  How could I have not known the exact moment that my baby had died right inside me???

Then guilt rushed in.  What did I do wrong?  Didn’t I eat right, rest enough, exercise enough, pray enough?  Why did God let this happen?  Why wasn’t our family meant to have this precious baby?  What did we do wrong?  What did I do wrong?

Then deep, deep sadness.

My parents came into town to help with the boys during this time.  There were a couple days I was pretty out of it.  I cried a lot, especially in the shower when my body was still obviously pregnant, but my mind had to accept that I wasn’t….that my baby was gone.  And the truth is… it was going to take time for my body and mind to accept and adjust.

It was going to take time to get Back  Home.

And I had no idea how to find the Bridges to help me get there.

The good news was the boys really didn’t understand the depth of our loss and I was grateful, they we’re able to move on quickly.  

The bad news was my husband didn’t share my beliefs or emotions and he moved on immediately.  He insisted it was just a miscarriage and was happy we didn’t lose an actual baby.  He didn’t understand why I was making “such a big deal” out of it.

I tried to find strength and solace by forcing myself to live in the moment with my sweet fun-loving boys.  But, without the emotional support from my husband, I felt truly alone in mourning the loss of my sweet baby.

So, the first Bridge I searched for was the support and wisdom from those who had endured similar loss.  It was way before Google, so I started by opening up the phone book and making some phone calls.

I learned a lot from others.  

They shared ideas & told me the things they did to help themselves deal with their loss.  I took their advice… did a lot of the same things and was slowly finding my way Back  Home.

I started a journal, planted a tree, designed a piece of jewelry to wear and filled a memory box… all in memory of my baby.  

As I was writing this blog I decided to get that memory box out of storage and I opened it today for the first time in almost 20 years.

I also created a sweet card to thank those who were supportive.  Even though there was no longer a baby, I wanted them to have this card in the baby’s memory.  

 

The card included a little butterfly and a quote that gave me tremendous peace in my sadness.  The vision of imagining the baby I lost up in heaven (as a beautiful sweet butterfly) brought me great comfort.   

 

 

Everybody says the best remedy for loss is time and I will agree with that.  It took me a long time…

Six months after the miscarriage, my husband made an appointment for a vasectomy and I was devastated. I had always felt in my heart there was another soul… another baby we were meant to include in our family.  So, I brought up the topic of adoption, to which my husband immediately vetoed.  

It was about a week before the vasectomy appointment, when I got our miracle.  I was pregnant.  And after 9 long months of continuing that roller-coaster ride of joy and worry… I gave birth to a precious, beautiful, healthy and happy baby girl.  And the moment they put her in my arms I noticed a faint birthmark on her cheek in the shape of a butterfly.  

I believe our baby’s soul up in heaven had kissed her cheek, before she was sent to us…

to let us know

everything was going to be OK

and we were finally all  Back  Home.   

 

 

Do you have any suggestions to help others navigate through a miscarriage?

Please share below in the comment section.

Here are some helpful links to copy/paste into a browser

that may help those who are navigating a miscarriage find their

Bridges Back Home 

http://www.americanpregnancy.org/pregnancy-loss/miscarriage-surviving-emotionally/

http://www.empowher.com/miscarriage/content/i-will-survive-life-after-miscarriage

http://www.miscarriageassociation.org.uk/information/leaflets/links/

 

HOME: the noun

HOME: the noun

Welcome Back!

Back  Home = happy place (physically & mentally)

Bridges = help us get there

 

Today’s post is about Home: the noun!

Some of us have been thinking about our “Dream House” since childhood.

 

Would it be a chic penthouse in a bustling city, a cozy cottage in the woods, a log cabin nestled slope-side in ski country, an oceanfront gem or a McMansion??

 

 

My sister’s dream house was always either a sleek 1950’s sprawling ranch or a clone of the Brady Bunch House.

 And she’d decorate it ultra-modern, like something you’d see in  Architectural Digest.

 

My dream house  was a cozy country cottage and it had to be near water…. a river, pond, lake, or ocean.   The walls painted a soft butter yellow, smooth hardwood floors buff-shined to a warm golden glow and plenty of BIG windows framed with gauzy white cotton curtains.

 

We all have our dream-house-dreams and in the meantime we need someplace to live.

So, how do we make wherever we are living now, (at this moment in our journey) the most comfortable, inviting, coziest Home we can?

As they say, life’s not about the destination… it’s about the journey.

So, I believe… even if you’re living in a Van Down By The River… make it WONDERFUL!!

 

 

Here are some Bridges to help make your Home wonderful.  

 

Begin with your 4 senses: SIGHT, TOUCH, SOUND & SMELL

SIGHT

  • What’s your favorite color?  Surround yourself with your favorite colors when picking out paint color, flooring, fabric….etc

  • What do you like to look at? This will help you to choose wall art and even furniture styles.  Do you like to look at framed family photos or photo albums?  Find ways to display these things in your home.

TOUCH

  • What fabrics do you like to touch?  This will help when you’re choosing bedding, towels, upholstery for your furniture, and flooring.

  • What things do you like to touch?  This may help when you’re adding accent decorations to your home.  I like the smooth feel of chestnuts, acorns, seashells and sand.  So, I keep collections of these things all around my house in baskets, glass decanters or wooden bowls.

  • Do you like blankets & quilts?  (I can’t have enough!!) Keep baskets of them within reach of your sofa or comfortable chair.

SOUND

  • Music makes the World-Go-Round.   Check out one of the coolest systems that is now available called  SONOS.  If you can’t afford a Sonos or an expensive stereo system, then get a radio or portable CD player.

  • Open your windows if you can, and listen to Nature or the sounds of the city!!

  • Sing! (although, my family wishes I wouldn’t)

SMELL

  • What do you like to smell?

  • Fresh flowers… put some in a vase, even if you can only afford one!

  • Candles are a wonderful way of bringing the scents you love into your home that may not be easily accessible where you’re living: pine woods, ocean breeze, orange orchard, the choices are endless.

  • Cooking is a wonderful way to bring comforting smells into your home. Saute some garlic for a delicious recipe or bake a batch of cookies!!  Your house will surely smell wonderful.

  • Open up your windows and let in the fresh air.

How do you make wherever you’re living now Wonderful?  Post some of your ideas in the comment section below…

Enjoy the following youtube song, reminding us about how wonderful it is to COME BACK HOME…

 

Navigating a High Conflict Divorce from a Narcissist

Navigating a High Conflict Divorce from a Narcissist
Karyl McBride has written a guide for people trying to extract themselves from narcissistic relationships. Her book, “Will I Ever Be Free of You? How to Navigate a High-Conflict Divorce from a Narcissist and Heal Your Family,” is featured in this month’s Well Book Club.
Keep reading to learn more about narcissistic personality disorder, why it’s tough to divorce a narcissist and why long, drawn-out legal battles are a playground for narcissists.

 

Unfortunately, I personally know this can be a never-ending journey.

As it states in the article:
 
They seek revenge, and the court system is an incredibly great platform for a narcissist. That’s where they can just continue the battle with the partner and continue to seek revenge, and that’s what happens.

 

I have endured Seven LONG Years, facing law suit after law suit and have truly lost faith in our Family Court System.

As it states in the article:

 

The narcissist will continue to try to blame their partner and harm their partner. They do it by these long, extended, contentious divorce cases that cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. We need more education for professionals in the divorce field so that the custody evaluators and family law people and therapists know what they’re dealing with. They also can be seduced by the narcissist.

 

In the end the true victims are always the children.

And my heart will forever be broken for my own children. 

But that’s a story for a another time.  

 

 

HERE’S THE LINK:

Divorcing a Narsissist

 

 

Hellllloooooo……

Hellllloooooo……

Welcome to Bridges Back Home!!!!

My name is Lorilyn Bridges and I started this blog,  FB page and website to help people.

 

Life is forever changing. 

Changes = Challenges

 

These changes can be big or small, made by us or for us…

Controlled by us, others, or nature/climate and they can happen randomly.

 

Life is one amazing and wild ride.  Our journey is filled with many hills and valleys.  

 And the good news is we’re all in it together.

 

Back  Home = happy place (physically & mentally)

Bridges = help us get there

 

Identify your Back Home and the Bridges you use to get there!!

 

At BBH we are a community where you can celebrate your successes and failures, to help others along the way.  

And hopefully be enlightened as well!!

 

Welcome aboard!!

 Lorilyn