It just keeps coming….

Good Morning. It is a peaceful morning. The month of May on Long Island is equivalent too why people travel all over the world to find the perfect cool, breezy beach weather. Most of May has been mild. No extreme heat or humidity. A pre menopausal delight, I might add.  Although, May is coming to a close, June is also spectacular too. I need a long walk on the beach.  I need to focus on the “current” crisis. I wasn’t kidding when I said our new family motto is “It just keeps Coming”.  Each day, I have been praying, all day, everyday. I pray for clarity, strength and the ability to be clear and focus on my family.  The anxiety has returned, along with moments of despair and sadness. I’m used to it right? I was even allowing myself to recognize, that I was feeling better. My grief was lifting. I was functioning and feeling more like leelee. I felt more grounded to the earth and I felt I was gaining a lot of inner peace and acceptance. I am. Along the journey,  I forgot about the roadblocks. I forgot about other’s falling apart around me. I forgot about how so many loved ones had buried their grief. They managed to push it way down deep and suffer silently. I forgot that others did not or wouldn’t seek help or support. I didn’t want to think what would happen because of their decisions. I just keep praying to God. I ask daily for him to protect and guide my loved ones. I tell him of my constant worry and stress and how it has taken it’s toll on everyone I love.  I surrounded myself with outside support. I had too. I learned quickly, instantly, that death from a suicide leaves people silent and unable to comfort or find the words to comfort us. Some of my loved ones were battling their own addictions and medicating their grief and sadness. I knew it would only make it harder, numbing the pain can actually be more painful. I also knew, I could not stop them. They have to want to heal themselves, more than I.

My battle internally is exhausting. I just pray to God. I ask for him to give me the ability to remain supportive and loving. I ask him to guide me, show me what to do. I cry and tell him I am afraid of losing another person that I love.  Suicide leaves the survivor of that loss with a heightened sense of fear and worry.  I recognize this as somewhat normal. When one experiences a tragic, violent death, those feelings, fears linger. I work through them daily. I remind myself to stay connected, tell each person how much I love them and care about them. I always, and will always remind my family, especially, my children, that no matter what,  I will always be here,  for you, for US, for our family, because I love them more than anyone or anything in this entire universe. I hope they hear that and most of all, trust in that.

Now, I am facing another crisis. One I never thought would enter my world. How stupid of me, naïve perhaps? To think I was immune? Lucky? whatever. I thanked God, everyday for my healthy children. I felt so blessed, grateful they were “ok”. I thought that addiction would never touch my child,  or my family? They would and could rise above it and not become a statistic. I believed they were strong enough to not become addicted.  Both of my children are in their 20’s. Neither showed any signs of substance abuse or dependency. We often talked about the other kids, their battles. It never dawned on me. I was living with a drug addict.  Here I am. A mother of a drug addict. Struggling, desperate to find help and recovery for him. Devastated and scared shitless. Acutely aware of his secret and his secret life. I am ready to battle for him, I am scared. Mostly, I am consumed with getting him into treatment. He is too ashamed, afraid to admit it to me. The battle has begun. I am focused, determined and as I told my son recently. No one, not one person in this entire world will love, protect, help and lay their own life down for you. But I will. I just pray he remembers that. I am his mother. I have no choice. The moment I held him, 29 years ago, I knew that moment, I would love and protect him forever. That is what we do. That is all I know. The love for your child has no boundaries. It consumes you and it becomes part of you. My beautiful, sparkling blue eyed baby boy is in trouble. Please pray for him, for our family and for his recovery. God is with me, guiding me. He will never leave me, he knows I can handle this and will continue to comfort me and give me strength. All I need to remember is to ask and hand this over to God. He will listen, and he will deliver. I am trying. I am reaching out to anyone who can help and heal him. I wish you all a beautiful day.  ~ leelee

the glimmer of the distant light

Good Morning & happy Friday! blessed are we for a long extended weekend. Much appreciated.  It has been a very jam packed stressful week of events. Our new family motto:  It just keeps coming.  I’m not kidding. I have remained calm, rational, loving and supportive through each crisis. Every loved one, I hold close and dear is suffering. Some, more than others. Truthfully, my brothers suicide has left an aftermath of pain and anguish and deep grief for us all. I was acutely aware over the last several months, how each loved one, friend, child would deal or not deal with a sudden tragic death. I know this road of death. I have travelled it for the last 15 years. I had absolutely no clue, no connection to a suicide, the murder of oneself. God, that hurts. It rips us inside deep. I also knew, some of my siblings would not quite deal with it with a healthy, therapeutic approach. I constantly pray for them. I also pray and remind myself, this is their journey and theirs alone.  I however, being a self graduate of individual therapy, an advocate for support groupies, therapists, spiritual guides, whatever it takes to heal to get “better”, I toot that horn a lot lately. It works, It helps, we heal. Bottom line, if you don’t do the work, walk thru the pain, lean into the grief, but, if choose you bury it,  & continue to harbor ill feelings, get depressed, hopeless, you can be sure, it will be twice as hard to start healing. It is common to numb, medicate, or soak your brain into silence. A lot of people are afraid to grieve, that can get you into some deep trouble. Today, I won’t get into detail about substance abuse  & alcoholism, maybe someday, we can explore that whole shitshow. So, for today,  I remain neutral. Quiet in my own journey, in  my writing, & my sharing.  I built my army of support. I found  a  new friend and a group for survivors of a loss from a suicide. Today, I thank our Lord, God. When I turned to him, he comforted and guided me. You only need to ask, to pray to him. To TRUST in him. Good stuff, healing the heart, feeding the soul, filling your cup slowly, rebuilding your faith, it’s all a process, the journey to healing. Now, I believe in him.

Before, I jet off to work, I took a few minutes today and booked a quick beach retreat with my brother Michael.  We can heal and be close there. Find our peace and our God, it’s all good.  I took a stroll this morning in the gardens. Look what my Mom gave me today.  She bought me this special Lilac bush on Mother’s day before she died. It has bloomed like the beauty it is. I feel a rush of love and comfort as I clip and inhale their scent. I miss her dearly, always will.   #lovinglilacsDSC05672 (2)

Sullen Sundays

I seem to awake before the birds lately. No explanation. Perhaps the hacking cougher next to me? Well, I lay there. Still, I try not to fidget and then that mental list, my weekend goals! What? It’s Sunday already? Ok, I’m up. Thanks.  So, I brew my Folgers, and finish the movie I passed out in the middle of last night. Birdman. Hmmmm, no one told me, I mean I asked my husband. Is this about suicide or anything? He comments to me,  Umm, actually, I only saw the beginning. Great. I dove in anyway. Well, thank you Michael Keaton. I had no idea I would become obsessed with Riggen. I mean you were a badass Batman, back in the day. Who knew you had these acting chops? Fucking, brilliant role. The ending is insane, but then it dawned on me. Suicide is totally insane. Well, at 4am, it seems,  I gain this sort of clarity, perspective. The truth is, I am just trying to make sense out of a senseless, violent death. I followed that whole shitshow up with 2 episodes of Grey’s Anatomy, and what the hell,  since I’m on a death roll, lets also watch an hour of my Long Island Medium. Brilliant shit. All of it actually. The Grey’s finale was superb. I worship the writer’s, the producers. It’s good shit. They close with Meredith narrating. You can heal from a tragedy. You can be whole and happy again. She goes on to say. The sun will certainly shine again. Ding! Another message, another step in healing my heart. Hearing it multiple times for me is essential. I gain more clarity, more perspective, I get “it”, but I am also making peace with it, it’s healing. A step, a moment. That is what it takes. Don’t rush. Keep it slow, be gentle with your heart, write, read, cry. I do it all. I pray, I plant. Anything that allows my mind to be at peace. So… I’m doing it, Lord, God, you’re guiding me. One day at a time.

 So, of course,  I wrap it all up with a good wholesome cry!  I cry alone, again, as the episode ends. I relate, way too much. I’ve lost so many loved ones. The list is long now. I ponder to myself, should you watch this shit? Is it therapeutic for you? My heart says it is. I’ve noticed since watching Long Island Medium, that the increase of suicide/drug overdoses deaths have doubled/tripled since Theresa Caputo started channeling dead spirits. Not ironic, not in the least. It is society, the silent epidemic, drug overdose and suicides. What a sad state of hopelessness our world has become.  I often wonder if she could channel my family. She has plenty to pick from now. I believe in her ability to read a heart. A grieving heart, sorrow, unresolved guilt, questions and signs. I believe in signs from the other side. I’ve followed all the mediums & psychics since I was a kid. I have always been a believer, in many things. I am totally comforted  to know that our loved ones can peek in and see us living. I’ve had many signs from my loved ones that passed. I choose to believe every one of them. In the years I have followed Theresa,  I have seen her literally clear grief, self torture from a loved ones face. Some spent years, decades carrying around that burden, that grief.  That my friends, is good enough for me. She is a healer, in her own way. She saw her first spirit at 4 years old. Some are blessed in this life to have that gift. Now, me, I’m a mama. I also have been blessed with intuition. I believe I was born with it. My gut has rarely been wrong. So much so, it scares me today. As a mother,  I have many worries and reasons for my conerns & my tears. Your children are part of your soul. If only they could understand how much you pray for them, wish for them, love them forever & beyond. That is the bond you share with  your child.  They are the reason I am who I am. I adored my mother. She was a loving, giving soul.  I miss my mom. So….Mother’s day passed, I didn’t allow myself to go there, I didn’t dwell. I walked the beach and I took notice of life, of families, mothers & daughters and their daughters spending the morning together. Yes, my heart breaks, but I had 47 mothers days with my own mother, each one I loved & I cherish them all. She must be busy with my brother, caring for him. Tom left us so suddenly, I still cry about that a lot. So….I pulled in my driveway and saw her! Yes!,  20 brilliant white blooms of the Lilac bush she bought me. I clipped a few and felt her all over again. I thanked her and smiled inside. She gave me that bush on Mother’s Day. Special ordered it for me. She always made me feel extra special, loved.  I talk to my brother, Tom. My heart misses his presence, his face. I miss Tom everyday. I’m feeling better, sad, but definitely better.

  I ping off ten things I want to accomplish, organize, sort, organize, sort & donate. My secret little hoarder obsession plays in my mind. Ok, listen,  I know why I do it, I don’t care to analyze, I just love to thrift. The hunt is almost like sex. I know, sick right. Another valid reason for obsessive shopping…. I dropped 5 sizes over the last 18 months. I had to stock up on smaller sizes, needless to say, thrifting, consignment shops have saved my credit cards! it’s been very good to me.  Now, I can honestly pick thru 100 racks and find the cutest top or the most adorable sundress, off the rack. WHAT? Who is that chick? It feels amazing. It is a freedom I denied myself for way too long. Feeling the benefits of shedding 100 lbs, it is a new lease, a new body, a new me. Shopping, well, retail therapy? why not! I console my sick little inner hoarder with this. Anything  you do not use, you donate. Pay it forward biotch! I really love to give back. It is the least I can do for anyone less fortunate. Thanks be to God. Enjoy your Sunday, The sun is indeed coming up today! *peace

~leeleegreat south bay, march 1

A sabbatical & some healing

Hello world!  Thought I checked out? Naaah, just a little sabbatical, and a get a way to a quiet, peaceful place. I planned this trip about 4 months ago. I was in a great state of grief. I was determined to unite my husband with his younger brother.  We both lost our brothers, his 3 years ago, mine 4 months ago. It was important for a myriad of reasons. For me, it was to see my soul sister in Florida and be able to connect and heal my brain, my broken heart, my soul on that beach.  I also knew, the husband had a slight plane phobia. I took the chance he would get over it.  He did.

The flight went smooth. The weather was beyond heavenly. When I entered my suite on the beach, I felt peace instantly. My friend, blinged out that apartment like a 5 star penthouse. She thought of absolutely everything. Even toothpicks! I texted her a message.  I have never had someone do something so special and beautiful for me, in my entire life.  I felt very loved and cared for. We spent 3 glorious days and nights on the island. Each day, more beautiful than the last. Could this be real? I awoke at dawn, and found my serenity and my God. I walked for miles, alone, because I wanted too. I photographed everything, and prayed a lot. I cried and prayed and pleaded with God to hear my cries. To protect my family, who I worry about constant. I asked for God to cleanse me, and heal my grieving soul. It was good. It was exactly what I envisioned for the last 4 months. We travelled up the coast and met my husband’s family and spent a few days at a beautiful resort on the beach.  Again, each day, was picture perfect. We enjoyed all the amentities, laughed a lot, again, it was so good. I tried several times to speak about my brother’s suicide.  How this journey, my grief had encompassed my brain, my soul. What flawed me, stunned me, is that not one person could speak a word. Well, actually, my friend’s boyfriend said these words “these things happen ya know”. Do I know?  He must be at a loss for a word. Yeah, I know, it happened to our family. I remained in a state of shock and realized he had no clue. Nobody has a clue, until you suffer a loss from suicide. Not one person could comment. Awkward silence, head looking down. I’m getting this now, this is the “stigma”, and I am now part of the survivor clan. Perhaps me seeking support groups and spiritual guidance was a good move.  I am grateful that I have those meetings,  & survivors of  a loss from suicide support groups. I can freely talk and speak about my brother Thomas. It’s important for me, for his memory, for our family to heal. I am trying to let go of my frustration about how people react. Simply, they freeze and can’t react. It’s too weird. My new world isn’t so defined anymore. Once you suffer a tragic death, it forever effects you. It effects the relationships you have and the one you sadly lost. It hurts, all we need is a warm, soft hand. A gentle, yet strong heart that allows me to scream, to question, & to cry. We just need to hear, I am so sorry, and I am here for you.  I never get that. Yet, I crave it every single day.  It isn’t easy to swallow. For now, I seek it in strangers. Yet, they aren’t strangers, they are part of the “clan” too.  People who walk the journey before you, are the best guides, the softest souls, because they once were in that identical darkness, grief.  You can’t help but have flashbacks, memories do flood back. Each day on the beach, I felt his spirit with me. I thought, how fucked up is this Tom??  We should be here together, planning a boating trip or bbq, but instead,  I am designing your headstone. Talk about a reality check! There it is.  SO live in today, and enjoy every drop, every moment you can grasp.  This life, offers no promises. But it does allow us to heal, to dream and to move forward, if we want too. Your journey  is taking your first step.  Love & Peace xxx ~ leeleeDSC05507