100 Posts! & One thing to be thankful for…

Good Morning, this Thanksgiving morning. I am solemn, reflective, quiet and aware.  I was surfing the net and reading various articles. I  read that even though my heart and soul are grieving today for my brother Thomas.  I should dig deeper for a moment.  It suggests to try to find one thing I can be grateful or thankful for.  I allowed myself a moment to acknowledge his absence at his table this year.  First one. Mourning him, it’s natural to feel sad and miss him. He carved a turkey like a surgeon. It was quite serious and methodical. The first bird he carved, he said that he had watched Bobby Flay on Food Network and he was going to replicate that technique. What seemed to be close to an hour later, his wife and I wondered if he could just speed up! Good times. Family.  When it all becomes a memory, you feel it twice as deep. So I will venture over to his home and have dinner with his wife and his kids. A small gathering, simple, easy. The only thing missing, will be him. Always him. He took the wind out of my sail. He took the moment of safety and warmth and  center, the essence of our family, his extended family instantly traumatized, severed,  Just like him. It severed our bonds of unity. He took his soul and his life, himself. You never get over such a thing, ever. You stay. You swallow it. You endure the aftermath. You pray like you never had before. Everyday for forgiveness, acceptance. The hardest work you will ever do. Emotionally, traumatic loss is completely exhausting. On all levels, you go through a complete transformation. Mind, body & spirit are tested beyond your conception. The journey of acceptance of a violent traumatic death is paralyzing. The healing process is slow and steep. You  have a range of deep grief that is suffocating and scary. It won’t last forever. I told myself that in my head. I leaned into it. My body of armor was his love, his kindness and compassion and devotion to everyone he loved. His commitment and  self driven, aggressive, no nonsense man Thomas was. I leaned on him for strength.  You honor his memory and live as though he is watching.  You pour yourself into support groups, you talk about it to someone. You sleep a lot. You walk and breathe fresh air a lot. You eat clean and healthy. You Love yourself harder, richer, with fever. Each day, you see a tiny bit clearer. The whole in your chest is smaller, lighter. You become able to read something and retain it. You show up early again.  You can focus on a tv show, or someone else’s conversation. The memory returns. The brain heals, slowly. You can feel it. I meditate and write volumes of journals, thoughts, love, memories, frustrations, fears. I write it all. I share a tiny bit of me with you. I snuck away to every beach I love. It healed me. I made peace with God, with my family, with Tom.  You remember the 7th of each month, sadly. You educate yourself about suicide. You become a crusader to prevent or help save another lost soul. You make a connection with someone who “gets it”. You plant flowers and remember his love of landscape and gardening.  I sometimes visit him on sunny days. You tend his garden and water your new life. The one that started the day he left us. You listen to the voice inside you. One cries in anguish over his pain and suffering. One whispers in his melodic, soft tone. Lisa, I love you, live in peace. Love life like I did.  Find what you love the most and do it often. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Focus on loving yourself & taking care of yourself. You must be your best. The rest will take care of itself. I hear him tell me. I was sick, I felt I had no other solution. I did not want to die, I just wanted to stop the pain and find peace.  He left, saying to everyone, I love you Always. I believe that, and above all, feel exactly the same for him. That is what I take with me everyday. That is how I survive and honor him. I often envision him with my entire family. Close to my parents and Grandparents. It gives me a moment of peace, clarity in this fucked up, life changing year.   Oh….sorry off on a leelee tangent.  Here comes What I Am Thankful For….

Michael & Danielle – The depth of my love and devotion is beyond the moon & stars, as deep as the ocean can be. You both are part of my soul. I am eternally thankful and blessed to have 2 beautiful, healthy, loving mini me’s. I dreamed of you. I remember, I was about 5, playing house. I said I wanted 6 kids. Like the Brady Bunch! We only had 5, and I wanted an even number. All I truly ever wanted was YOU.  I am acutely aware of how fragile & precious each day is. Our family, all of us, have endured the most difficult and painful, trying, scary year of our lives. A mother worries, it maybe futile or foolish to some. For me, it is impossible to not want to fix, mend, heal all your troubles, struggles. I forever will be your Mama. It is the only thing that I want to be proud of.  I am more than touched by your love. You have helped Mommy heal in many ways this year.  I am proud both of you are trying to be good, kind, loving people. Your happiness and well being is my deepest prayer and hope. I am dedicated to you. Your goals and dreams. They encompass my heart. You two are the constant light and hope that makes me love life.  I always ask that you be honest, open and compassionate to each other. I love how you take care of me and make me feel special, all the time. I see your hearts, by the little things you do for me and with me. My heart overflows with thankfulness, because of my two blessings.   <3 love you always xxx mamabear


woohoo! 100 posts. I think it’s some sort of accomplishment? I mean, I didn’t flake out, or stop abruptly and fall off the face of bloggyland! I stood. I climbed, crawled to keep my moments flowing. I learned a few things along the way. When you finally make it to the top of the hill, soak it in for a moment. Record that. Photograph it, pray, smile and be thankful. Be in the moment for as long as you can or wish too. The climb down is a piece of cake, really. Stay on course, it’s worth it <3



Hope in a day…

Good Morning, sweet Sunday. I attended the International Survivors of Suicide Loss Day. I did not know what to expect. Again, it is my first time attending. I meditated in the morning and set an intention of connecting with one soul who would “get me”.  This conference was approved and made official by our government. This one day, forever will be recognized globally, internationally. I, am a survivor now. It is also  simulcaste on the internet. AFSP, is speaking. It is reaching millions. It recognizes our loved ones and most importantly does good work for the prevention of suicide.  A lovely lunch, followed by a montage of photo’s, (many many, tears) and a video of families who have suffered this loss and share their journey & healing.  We then disperse into break out groups, parents, siblings, spouses and share our stories.  Heart wrenching? Yes, but the energy and the LOVE that was shared safely in our group was truly a healing, enlightening experience.  I indeed connected. I met a mother who lost her son in May. A beautiful, loving, strong woman. She shared her son was 25, loving, alive, giving soul & wonderful man who suicided unexpectedly. I hear that often. No signs, no past mental illness. She asked me if there were signs prior to my brother’s suicide. I told her not really. He had never been treated, diagnosed, never attempted. I also shared. My brother did not tell one living soul of his plan or thoughts.  He hid his pain and suffering from everyone. That is who Thomas was, a giver, a survivor, strong.  I did tell her, he was fighting this inner demon for months, he looked sickly, very quiet and distant.  Knowing him, he was doing everything he could to escape it.  The video started and from the first picture, there were many tears. Thomas’s picture appeared and my heart just breaks. That moment of reality, it cuts deeply. Everyone shared, the pain, feelings, history. The common thread…..above all, was the LOVE in that room was life changing. Every person in our circle shared their heart and worries. It was good work, it was bittersweet, yes, but truly this how the healing begins. Together.

I can’t begin to share the loss within. If you ever suffered a sudden or tragic loss, you get me.  You don’t get “over” it. Ever. You certainly must learn to accept and live within it. Without them here. I am learning to do that everyday now.  I could go on & on about missing his smile, his voice, his laughter and silliness. I do, every single day. I felt this conference sheds light to a dark death, a scary uncomfortable subject to discuss. It certainly allowed me to honor him, to say his name over & over again and remember him. That means the world to me.  There is much work to be done with the stigma of Suicide. The truth is 41,000 people will die this year, more than last year. The world is listening and understanding the importance of prevention and support. I hope you do too.

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is speaking. Please listen & if you care YOU can help spread the message.  I wish you all a lovingly, peaceful day. <3







~ leelee

Fear, our world today

I awake with prayers and heartache for the victims of the Paris, France attack last night. I hear you, I feel you and I understand your trauma and tragic losses. We all are heartbroken to learn of this insane, senseless attack. I am glad the terrorists blew themselves up. The world has 8 less terrorists to deal with. Amen.

I heard the news last night. I was walking into the bedroom and heard CNN blasting about ISIS, about deaths, about multiple attacks. I heard 100’s of victims shot by gunmen. I heard 1000’s from one reporter? Once again we are thrust into terror. They state that terrorists, group ISIS, has taken credit for the attack in Paris, France.  Described as a lovely, quiet, upscale popular town in Paris.  It houses, families, cafe’s, bars, shops. The stadium was packed for a soccer game a few miles away. A typical Friday evening. Everyone is out and about. Celebrating, enjoying a game, a drink, a meal. Then, in one split second, the world changes. Fear instills, death occurs instantly. Chaos. I am still in awe of the response from the French Army. They were summoned and thousands of soldiers flooded those streets. It was war, declared instantly. I fell asleep and prayed for each victim. I asked my God, WHY?  again? Help us. I ask and pray everyday for my son’s friend. I ask God…Why him? Billy murdered? Children and families shot and murdered? It makes no sense to any of us. I saw a pic of a black hooded man. He identifies as an ISIS, terrorist. He was a murderer. I awake this morning to hear,  7 Terrorists blew themselves up together. The 8th terrorist, was killed by the French police.  Murder/Suicide again. I believe and sadly fear this will continue in our world. This radical, inhumane, barbaric form of  Religious Radicals.  Army’s of racists and religious fanatics who only prey on the INNOCENT,  our brothers and sisters, not their enemies. In their warped and desensitized state of mind of a trained terrorist. It starts at birth perhaps they are born into it, bred to kill for Allah, for land, for power, oil, their interpretation of a God who whispers for them to kill 100’s of loving, hard working, human beings??? They become mere cowards to us instantly. They are truly  brain washed & mentally detached from humanity and reality. They kill for their cause, their religious belief, they believe Allah has sent them to perform a mission of murder. Each,  sacrificing their own life for their God and their beliefs, mostly for POWER. It has poisoned their mind.  The new devil, the cold, insane mind of a warped trained, terrorist.  They are everywhere, in every land, city, continent. They all have one thing in common. They are haters of the free world. Born and breed to destroy and kill.  Violence and terrorism is a deadly potion. Lethal, toxic, indestructible.  Their taking responsibility!  that in itself, explains their irrational state of mind. They always commit suicide to “seal the deal” This is their final vow?  In my mind, they were nothing to begin with. Nothing human lives inside a killer. They will not be memorable, they leave with no legacy, no purpose. They are like robots. They kill themselves for well….for,  NOTHING really. They must have been conditioned, tortured, hypnotized to believe this. I suspect years of it, decades maybe.  They must be suicidal to sneak into a town and just randomly kill people. After 9/11, all of us knew. We are no longer safe.   No place on this earth is terror free. They take that from us, every time they kill someone, we are not safe, or free. They commit an act of terrorism, in their eyes, their minds, they succeed. Seriously? Death is not a success. It is destroying our world. I am mostly sad that these acts of terrorism,  develops hate inside me. The attacks damage us.  They leave fear, despair, chaos, uncertainty and unfortunately hate lingers. The media circus, it’s happening. I refuse to sit and watch it for 8 hours. I would rather help them. Help France and those families recover.  ISIS, the new terror in our world.  They spare no one, they simply kill because it hurts, it makes us all stop and take notice of THEM.  To me, they are not human. They are a cult of hell.  They are the darkness we all fear.   I will burn the candles today for each victim and family suffering from this horrible attack.    I hope you will too.  Love, ~ leelee






in hono0r

love,  ~ leelee

I burn this eternal candle in honor of the victims of the terrorist attack in Paris, France  11/13/15

Hello God, it’s me leelee

Good morning, quiet Saturday. I dread writing this post. I avoided it all week. The truth is, who wants to share tragedy and trauma. No one I know, but I deeply understand it, and relate to it.  I tried to envision my blog, years ago. In my head, it was full of love, laughter, comedy, recipes, traditions, milestones. It was a canvas, a portrait, insta snap of my life as I see it and live it. I started blogging casually. I never had a concrete plan. I was never published, but, I had written my moments since I was very young. Poetry and stories and journals upon journals of me. I never saved them. My writing, journaling has been my private therapy.  I penned my innermost feelings and thoughts. I respected my loved ones enough and I never wanted to hurt or crush anyone I love. I have memory boxes of beautiful writings, eulogies, poems, cards, letters. I recognize that is what I  want my children to find or read. They don’t need to see my dark thoughts, my pain or struggles. I was acutely aware of sparing and protecting them.  I remember going to the movies and seeing Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep in Bridges of Madison County. I remember the reaction of Francesca’s children, when they found her diaries. I never forgot that.  Then the blog world exploded. You publish your words, your feelings all over the net. It’s public, it’s raw and uncensored, it is for reals. I still protect my children, Mother’s do that, it is our instinct and duty.

I avoided sharing this story. It is tragic. Today, my beautiful son turns 30. I sit and reflect on 30!  There is truth to the old saying….You blink and they are all grown up.  He has had many struggles, this year being the most challenging for him. It has taken it’s toll on our family, but, I am committed to my children and guiding them on the right path. I do my best to support them, and cry along with them.  I wish today, would be a happy, care free celebration. Reality is, my son suffered a loss this week. A dear friend, was murdered in their place of business.  He died from multiple stab wounds at 3am, alone, working at a transport company. My son, who also works there, returned his car at 6:30 am and discovered his friend dead.  He called the police and then dialed me. As a mother, when you hear your child’s voice pleading, crying, in anguish, all you want to do is hold them, comfort them, protect them.  My son’s friend, I believe is an innocent victim.  There was a violent struggle, and he succumbed to a horrible death. I pray for his family. Billy, the victim of a violent crime, is well loved and known in our little town. He had many friends, a brother, sister, mom. They are devastated, in shock and grieving.

I am no stranger to death or loss. No one is. But knowing this gentle man, his simple life, young and in his 20’s, healthy, loved. It is devastating to absorb and understand murder. It makes no sense. Billy is described by everyone as a good friend, a gentle soul, quiet and reserved. WHY? we plead and pray and ask God. Why do good people suffer? We find no answer. We pray they find the killer.  My son, suffered a trauma. He truly was in shock. I think he still is. I worry. I am his mother. I want to make it better. I want to soften his nightmares and flashbacks. The truth is, I can’t. But, he is surrounded by his childhood friends.  The support has been very solid for him. I am thankful the group of friends are taking care of one another. My son said, Billy would have done that for anyone Mom. My heart hurts for his lovely mother. They are all deeply grieving this loss. Billy is loved & missed and we are praying for his family, please, say a prayer for them too. Please let justice be served this time. Amen.

I baked a birthday cake this morning. I prepared my son’s favorite foods. My heart is heavy. My head is full of worry.  I celebrate and I secretly thank God. My son is alive, and he was spared.  I realize, he must be watched over and protected by his angel, my Mother. I am grateful eternally. My children are part of my soul. Embedded and woven into our hearts, our lives, forever & beyond.  Today, I celebrate my first born. 30 Years ago, he made my dream come true. He probably doesn’t even know how much I adore and love him.  He certainly is told that everyday, he is loved, cherished, especially today.  I am reminded of how blessed, loved, and lucky I am to be surrounded by my beautiful kids. 


Enjoy the moments….all