Reflections of love, Father’s & sons

Good Morning:

I awake with the heavy rains on the Island.   They came, all night, relentless. I thought for a moment…this is how many tears I have cried, shed when my father died. I cried as many, if not more when my brother died. So, as you can imagine, Father’s Day is not quite the celebration it once was. Not by a long mile. This year, well, how can I even put this into words without sharing all the pain in today? I simply can’t. I don’t do fake. I loathe bullshit phoniness, and I own what is happening.  My mentor, my rock, the center of our family, My dad died of lung cancer in 2002.  It was the quickest death in history. He went into treatment, chemo and radiation for stage 3 small cell carcinoma. It was inoperable. The studies proved only 15% can even survive. I remember him sharing, well, I don’t have a choice. I am 63 years old, I have a lot to live for. Fuck cancer. Fuck the cure they attempted to run thru his veins. He suffered the entire time, and 7 months to the day, he died. The cancer had spread into his liver, he was suffering, sick and failing. He was in such shock from the news. All that suffering, treatments. He died a month after his last chemo. His oncologist told my family, it was the most aggressive form of cancer he had ever seen or treated, he was sorry. Yeah….so were we Doc.  From that day on, Father’s day was a painful day. For many many years, I would post or write about how it will “never be the same”. Well, I guess I was right. It isn’t. The beautiful part… oh, yes there is one!  I have so many days, years, decades, of beautiful memories of my Father. I am now able to reflect and perhaps honor those memories, far more than the last 7 months of his life. That journey took years! I deeply miss him, and I still cry to him. I was blessingly left with infinite wisdom, love and sense of importance and worthiness. He is my hero. My rescue, my mentor, my daddy. Those things you get to keep forever.

The sadness today, it’s no surprise. I grieve for my brother Thomas. I truly am grieving for his children today.  The shock and horror of his tragic death 5 months ago. I am sure they are all grieving today. I pray for all of them. I will reach out to each one and offer them a place to hang out if they want. My heart hurts, all 5 of his children were under 28. His choice to die will effect them forever.  I am also grieving for my son. He became a father 6 months ago. He will not see his daughter, nor will we. The baby’s mother will not communicate or respond to us.  For me, as of late, I almost feel like I am grieving another loss. This is terribly painful for me to even share or talk about. I have held all this in for months and months. It is time for me to work through this grief, this loss. Our family motto:  “It just keeps coming”! Well,  it rings true yet again. Today,  I pray for my family, I write a lot, I busy myself with menial tasks, garden, plant, weed, read, cook, clean, organize. This is what I do, for now. I won’t sit and wallow in pity. I’ve done that far too many times in my life.  For some odd reason, I choose to see brighter days, healing, and working towards a solution and if that means, legally going to court and obtaining  Grandparent visitation, I will work towards that as my goal.  Whew, that felt good. Just to say that. Anna Lisa my sweet angel. Nana loves you, each and every single day. One day, we will share it all, you and me,  together <3.  love & peace to you ~ leelee


in hono0r

Moving towards hope & love

Hello world! I know you’re smiling, tis Friday people. A very good day for leelee. The week has had it’s challenges, story of leelee moments & as of late, my new life.  I say “new” because people would assume, new is a positive, bright future. I can’t claim that today. I can only say for certain, a mother’s intuition, my gut, the one thing that has sustained, guided, and has continually confirmed or clarified so many things in my life. I can recall having this feeling even as a young kid. At first, I did not pay much attention to this churning, persistent feeling.  It is subtle, this intuition, sixth sense, psychic connections if you will.  I tell a story of how I inherited it from my Mother.  I feel like I was born with it. I’ve learned to listen and hone in on the signs of my deep intuition. A pull down deep in my belly. A haunting of sorts that tugs at my heart strings, and makes me re focus on subtle signs and feelings.  My mind receives signs, confirming my initial inner turmoil. I have learned and prayed to allow myself to accept and listen to my body and mind.  In all honesty, it has never steered me wrong. My Mom told me her Grandmother had it also. I don’t predict futures or speak to the dead. I just rely on what my gut is whispering.  Sometimes, it isn’t pretty or sunny or positive. Sometimes, it’s down right heart wrenching.

My intuition, gut, spirit guide, whatever the hell it is… has been poking me hard as of late. The grief and suffering have been heavy. I reflect now about my brothers suicide. I saw and felt many signs from my brother Thomas. I actually can recall the physical changes in him, a few days before his suicide. Subtle, perhaps, but prevalent for sure. Now they appear and I feel it to be haunting and chilling. His color, his vacant eyes and demeanor were upsetting.  I picked up on it weeks before at Christmas dinner. We didn’t chat or spend time alone that evening. I had a strong pull when I left that evening. I did not feel he was suicidal. I was concerned that he looked ill. He became silent, quieter, I did notice that. Then again, so did I.  I was feeling the disconnect. I attributed it to my son’s recent departure from his company. I let it go. The last time I saw my brother Thomas, he looked even paler, grey in pallor. He didn’t speak. He didn’t acknowledge my Granddaughters photo, he just stared and smiled. I now can look back and recall. My belly was churning, flip flopping, my mind racing with thoughts. Something was just not right. We didn’t get any time alone that evening either. When I left his home early, I was alittle perturbed,  I was alittle insulted, put off even! I remember thinking…Man, he really looks like shit and now he looks “shot”. Another pang, pull, deep churning, I ignored it again.  Three days later, he shot himself.  That is how blunt, how final and quick he ended. That choice silences me. That one moment of insanity, changed me, forever. We will never be the same person we once were. Once a loved one chooses death, plans death and succeeds, it changes who we are forever. With God’s grace and support, I am slowly surfacing. I am slowly awakening and feeling the sunlight and the soft breeze. I allow the grief to come. I acknowledge it and cry for him, to him. Then…I let it go. I write a lot. The sparks fly like a bonfire, my heart pouring, my truest of pain and suffering, I splatter the words on my pages and I cry. I feel like I am on a continuous ferris wheel. The truth is…I LOATHE rides, high velocity, spinning, ugh! What I have learned is to dig in deep. Reach out, grasp support and steal every moment of peace and serenity I can.  I have learned to live in a moment again. This blog, my little secret. “leelee Moments” was created because I treasure and cherish this beautiful world, planet, life.  I wanted to share those special moments, memories, milestones and inspirations with all of you. This journey has taken many twisting turns as of late. Real shit, how whack it all got in a blink.

Five months ago….I celebrated the birth of our first grandchild Anna Lisa. It has been 4.5 months since we have had any contact with the our little granddaughter or the mother. We grieve everyday. Perhaps, one day this will change.  Five months ago, my brother Thomas took his life. The world remained dark and sad everyday. I miss him, love him everyday. Five months ago, I reached a milestone of 100 lb weight loss. I am still losing and feeling really good.  Five months ago, I found out my son was a drug abuser/addict. No one else believed me at the time. My gut told me different. Five months later, he has struggled, and now seems to want help. I am curious to see what I write about five months from now…the hope and faith inside me, that little pull…tug…is saying. It’s going to be good leelee. So, for today, I will go with that.  I remind myself…One Day At A Time leelee. That’s all we can do today.   Love & peace to you~


~ leeleegut instincts

reuniting, and learning to Live again

Hello on this cloudy Monday morning.  The weekend was a whirlwind of activities, entertaining and having a moment, a few leelee moments thrown in for good measure.  Recently, I reunited with my sister. We had been separated, not talking, for almost 5 years.  It was a long hiatus, nothing that I was ever used to doing or becoming.  Over those “lost” years, my sister suffered with great depression and developed a drinking problem. I say “problem”, because she had never had a dependency. Least of all, alcohol and never drugs. Addiction is a cunning, insidious thing. The drug or the demon appears out of nowhere. It is sneaky, quiet at first. Easy to hide, step around and deny. I guess 5 years later, when you wake up one day and realize….A) I don’t remember a thing over the last 12 hours. B) I fell drunk down a staircase, or,  C) I can’t stop on my own. I guess it is fair to say, you have a drinking problem.  In recovery, you learn quickly, the drug, the drink was only a temporary solution.  I’m pretty certain, that long before you became an addict, or a drunk, those problems existed. Denial is the first demon you cross in addiction. I can stop or I don’t have a problem is a typical response from an addict or alcoholic. That reality is too painful for someone that is mentally depleted and depressed.  Admitting and expressing your feelings is HARD. Gut wrenching painful and to an addict, scary and impossible. All those feelings are ignored or pushed down or buried deep inside, & they linger, & they become more overwhelming. The sick part of addiction, is you just keep medicating it. You become dependent, unable to stop, to get help, to admit, you become a depressed shell of who you were. The courage and the balls to admit you have a problem, I believe is 50% of the inner battle. Once you say that out loud , admit you are really fucked up and in pain! Once you seek help, there is a good chance, you will get better. If you want too. If your true desire is to be clean.  A tough, long journey. Hell yes. A worthwhile one? absolutely. So for the last 6 years, I prayed everyday for my sister. Our family became distant and guarded. She remained alone, with little support, in another state. I didn’t want a relationship. I spoke to her a few times and she was not the brown eyed tom boy I remember. She was quite insane, manic and very stressed and hateful.  I tried for years to have a healthy relationship. An honest relationship. She became more angry, bitter and overwhelmed.  Our trust was shattered and my mother’s secrets and her depleted estate and money issues tore us apart.  It cut me deep. Unfortunately, those secrets, deceit,  separated us from her, she was all alone and hurting.  I would get updates every so often of her depression, her financial collapse and how she was not handling it very well.  My brother’s told me she drank. My brother’s told me she was a broken soul. I grieved and prayed she would find the help she needed. Today, my sister  celebrates2 weeks sober. I have never seen her so calm. I see hope. I see my little sis coming back to life. Thank you God. She told me everyday this weekend. It’s really amazing to wake up, (clear) and not “come too”.  I rejoiced for her. We spent this weekend together, every second glued to one another. She relaxed, she wasn’t crying or in pain. She feels free.  She asked me for a local AA meeting, she would need to get to a meeting daily. I found them in 2 clicks online. Amazing organization. You work the program. The only requirement:  The desire to stop drinking or drugging. Seeking recovery. The miracle is, it gives you back your “hope”.  It’s the program, the 12 steps that saves millions of lives, one day at a time.  It saved my mother. I see it saving her too. The tricky part is to allow GOD in there…somewhere, somehow, & however you choose to manifest that. That is the secret to recovery and healing.  There is no negotiating that. AA is based on the steps and most importantly finding Your Higher Power.  I heard 3 speakers this weekend. Powerful, raw, honest and all of them in tears. Tears from gratitude! Tears from thankfulness. This program, those people saved their lives. Now they share their story and save another. Powerful, real shit. I was never so proud of her. She didn’t speak, although, she wanted too. She listened. Smart girl. She always was.

Sunday, ahhhh, heavenly day on the island.  Determined to go to the ocean. That’s all she talked about for weeks. I wanna get to our beach. I have to sink my toes in! It’s been too long! I knew she dreamed about it. She missed it. She was like a little kid about a day at the beach! The thing is, she travelled here with her friend. No kids, no husband, she was alone. She could sit in her beach chair and not worry, run, chase or care for anyone but herself. She baked her very pale unexposed skin, soaking up the rays, the breeze, the waves and her serenity. She didn’t need a long walk. She didn’t even hit the shore or dabble her toes in the freezing ocean. She just chilled. She was amazing. We stayed till we were alittle crisp. We enjoyed every moment. Memories of our lives swirling. Memories of my brother, painfully raw for me. We spent a lot of time on the Great South Bay. He loved the ocean. We all do. It’s in our blood. We grew up on this Island, it is our peace and serenity. God’s creation for sure. Massive and powerful. I believe I have done my best self healing on these beaches, for many years, hours of reflection, tears, writing and praying.  The salty sea air is magical. Trust me. We came home and I made her favorite dinner. Lean roast beef with homemade gravy & mashed potatoes. She ate hearty, she looked rested. She looked healthy. Prayer must work! I see the miracle happening before me.  I feel her strength building. Sobriety can be a beautiful thing. I am optimistic, but real. None of this shit is easy, but in my soul, if anyone can achieve it, she can. I had multiple blessings this weekend. I wish I had more time. Hugging her was good. Holding her was comforting. I missed my sister so much, I just never allowed myself to admit it.  I wish my brother’s could have joined us. I grieved a lot this weekend. My beautiful brother Thomas, left us, he chose death as a solution. I will ALWAYS grieve his choice.  An exit, so traumatic. I tremble as I type it. I hit that wall again, full speed. I hear him, I hear God saying. This is where you move forward. This is where you heal from. But?  God? It hurts a lot. It scares me to look ahead. I still feel lost. I still feel like an orphan. I still miss him everyday. He must hear me, for he comforts me. In that comfort I hear this message…. by moving forward, you are healing. It’s no small coincidence, that the message, the mantra if you will for AA is….

One Day At A Time ~  Isn’t today all ANY of us really have? I believe so.  So far, it’s been working for me…and for her. Love & Blessings to all


~ leelee

moments & making memories without you

Good Morning. I awoke with a purpose today. After a very long, and often lonely few months, my family will be joining us all here on Long Island for Tom’s granddaughter’s 4th birthday party.  We all made a special effort to be there for Callie and Tom’s daughter. The party will be hosted at my brother’s home. My siblings have not been there since he died. Tomorrow marks 5 months since he took his life. Five fucking grueling months of deep grief, sadness, confusion, worry and all the other emotions that suffocate you after a suicide. I work through them daily. I am aware of my anxiety today. I am anxious, excited, scared, and reflective all in one. I miss my brother’s and sister. They do not live near me anymore. We talk daily, and they have all been working through the grief,  dealing with their own issues and their family issues…it is fair to say, our family has issues. They all have been a good support, loving and we are all privately hurting and slowly dealing. Mostly, I miss my brother Thomas. The thoughts in my head  all week, semi dreading, grateful to see my family, how can we do this without him? All of that jazz, running around in my head. I grieve his choice, that split second insane decision to die. It has changed us all, forever. All week, knowing that he won’t be hosting today, it is painful, surreal, vacant. I am thrown into this wall, day after day…The stage of acceptance. It’s accepting he is not here anymore. That beautiful soul, missing. The journey of letting someone go in your mind, in the physical world, working towards building a life without him in it with me. I can’t run to him, call him, laugh or be with him physically. I talk to him, pray to him every single day, I tell him how much I love him & miss him. I do. It hurts. That grief does not ever leave my heart, gone way too soon it whispers constant.  I feel this part of grief is the hardest climb. The steepest hurdle. The reality appears daily and you busy yourself to the point of exhaustion, just not to think about him too much. As each milestone, occasion unfolds, he is in my thoughts. When I go to his home, the anxiety and sadness increase. The tape plays…in my head. You should Be HERE, not there. That feeling increases when I am around his wife and kids. I deal with it, I love them and they are all hurting too.

His beautiful granddaughter will have a fun filled 4th birthday today. Balloons, cake, friends, games, toys, presents and everyone who adores and loves her will celebrate our great niece. She was Thomas’s sunshine. She followed him everywhere. They had a morning routine. Her mom would drop her off and Pop and Callie would pick out the outfit for pre school. He would dress her and get her ready for her big day. She told me one day. I was laying in bed with Poppy and he was singing the Frozen song! He sang the wrong words! He was so funny. When Tom died, she recited. Pop is up in the sky, he is in heaven.  I cried. The other day she told me. Poppy died. I was shocked. Then she said, I miss him a lot. So do I….I told her. 3 years old, we often wonder how much she will remember of him. We all realized that the world of social media, videos, pictures is how she will remember him,  they are now her memories. I will forever wish, and then grieve, that as we continue to make memories, he is absent from us, a piece of our unity and center is shattered. That is what suicide does ya know, it shatters the survivors. It is a painful journey to recover from. He is for me…. Forever loved, forever missed, especially today.  Later tonight, I plan on igniting Chinese lanterns, with messages written on them and sending them “up in the sky” to heaven, to Thomas.   Peace* to all