Heat All Around

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

THE HEART'S BELONGINGS

It is 6:30 in the morning here. I went to sleep less that four hours ago, and now here I am, up and running again.

Yesterday, or was it the day before?...With

so little sleep it is really hard to tell about time elapsing...but for the purpose of this posting, let us just say, "yesterday."








Yesterday I wrote here about those people who have made

Muse Publishing such a wonderful family place to live.






However since my ex-husband's

brother found us two, going on three years ago, forcing us out of our own private shadows, there have been MANY people who have entered our world to make it such a rich and FINALLY, beautiful place to be, and they deserve the accolades they richly deserve.



Eric, you are so unlike your brother it is hard to believe you came from the same

gene pool. You re-entered our world shortly after I'd had a

mini-stroke. My already

sagging jaw dropped, and

my heart crashed and splintered to the ground.

WHY? my brain screamed, and if you found us, was your brother behind it?

But instead of coming into our lives to hurt us, you came to give us acceptance of the truth...not your brother's version of truth, but the REAL truth.

I am so very

sorry you had to learn the truth because I know how deeply the words and mental images those word conjured,

hurt you. You are a hero,

documented, and one of the bravest men I have ever known. You are strong, but can be tender, compassionate, loving, and embracing. You are the model I used in creating Cameron Drayton, my hero in

SANTA IS A LADY, and you are the reason I can finally breathe peacefully for the first time in going on 28 years now.









Audrey, my beautiful, generous, understanding sister.

YOU worked diligently so Eric could find us. You told me he NEEDED to find us because there was a hole inside him where we belonged.


You both knew the probability that what we would reveal would be

dark and bad, but you rallied on. Eric and you both shared that it really was YOU who found my son's website and through it, us.

Your love for your husband, Eric, is so strong, you helped him find us, and opened your arms to welcome us into the fold of your wonderfully close-knit family.

I had always wanted a sister. I remember asking my Mom to please, please, please

buy me a baby sister.

She told me the store was totally sold out of ALL babies. I didn't understand at the time what that meant. All it meant to me then was I wasn't going to ever have a sister...and I didn't...

until you. I wish we lived closer, though, because it would be a dream come true to be able to sit with you, close enough to see the multitude of expressions your lovely face would reveal as we talked.

Perhaps, one day, somewhere in the future, that will happen. Until then, your

voice on the phone is intoxicating to this woman's

hungry heart, and I thank you from the bottom of that hungry heart, for family.

This next person, is the very first person who scaled the

walls I'd encased my heart in back in the late 1980's. Suzie.

Suzie worked at John Wanamaker's in the Luggage Dept. Like my Grandma, Suzie was petite, with pure white hair, who many found abrasive, hard assed, and sometimes downright irritating. Like me, you had your own walls, and maybe because of that, recognized a bit of yourself in me.

I remember the day you told me what your late husband had done. We were having lunch at the Friendly's just outside Wanamaker's mall side portal. You spoke of an angry, vicious man, jerking the wheel of the car you two were in, bursting through the bridge's railings and plunging into the icy Delaware River. You chilled me with your recounting of how you managed to get your mangled body free of that sinking mausoleum, and paddle your way to the surface.

YEARS it took you to learn how to reuse that tiny body, and how, as a single mother, you had to enter the workforce at an age that should have been golden for you.

I know you are gone from this plane of existence, and

I grieve for your loss every day...I have ALL of the cards you consistently sent me thumb-tacked to the walls in my bedroom. All I need to do is look up, look left, look straight ahead, look right and you are there, but more importantly like my Grandmother,

Nonnie, who I also grieve for every day, you are here inside me, a part of me and part of the woman I am today. Your cantankerous veneer was how you protected yourself from more hurt, just as I had my stand-offish atittude, some thought snobbish veneer.

You, My Darling Suzie, became for me the

Mother, my mother, in her alcoholic stupor, could not be, and the Grandmother for my children, that Nonnie WOULD have been. I love you, Suzie...thank you for loving me.

Suzie died of cancer five years ago, and I felt her death long before I had any confirmation of her death. I miss her.

Health issues forced me back into my shell of utmost protection building it even higher. It is not healthy to want to create

an emotional island.


My daughter,


a rare gift from God and the Universe was my only constant. Our closeness sometimes is the only thing that keeps me placing one foot in front of the other. Had she not been here, I know I would have quietly slipped into my own form

of catatonia.

She did not allow that to happen after Eric returned to our lives and the memories of the atrocities my ex committed upon me returned in devastatingly vivid detail.

Writing has always been my

naughty secret from everyone but Kat and one woman who ran the Book Swap. Donna and Kat were formidable in praising my ramblings. On March 29th, their proddings became reality. I was now a Muser.


My body, on the other hand, was making my life adventurous...I needed help...my mind was slipping in and out of the

rabbit hole thanks to those returned memories.  I was reluctant to head back into therapy. I hadn't had the best of luck with therapists. The one I had seen before filing for divorce was exclusive to that township. The children and I had to leave when our house sold. Ted could no longer be our counselor.

The one after Ted was one of those who preaches the premise that, "you're out of it. He can't hurt you any longer. Stop whining and move on."

I did move on, to another therapist. This one sat on the edge of his seat, salivating over the details of the sexual violence with the material covering

his own excitement bulging.

I moved on from him too. I found Judy. Judy and I worked well together and we were making progress when Judy was in a near fatal car crash.

They'd assign me another therapist, if I wanted them to, but my story is hard enough to describe the first time around...starting over?

No thanks.

But Eric re-entering my life, releasing the horrid memories, battles with my daughter's

former publisher and new health battles drove me to the point where I knew I needed help...like yesterday, but most definitely today.

Lisa, this adorable, petite brunette attached with Jewish Family and Children Services took me, grand-daughter of a Cherokee, on. We established a...let's just say, I trusted her. Lisa and JFCS do not JUST take care of the emotions...they have in place operatives to take care of ALL aspects of the human story. Lisa knew the Soc.Sec. monies we live on was not enough...she sent me to Claire.

Claire, four years my senior took care of the

financial and

food needs...but she became so much more. I wish I could explain the process we have going on inside us that tells us when we have met someone destined to be a part of our lives. Claire is intricately

woven into the fabric of who I am and who I will become in the days, weeks, months, years still ahead of me.

I feel like I have known her forever. Thank the merciful Heavens, Claire was a part of my life because Lisa, my sweet, caring, wise Lisa, was badly assaulted

by her autistic son during Passover last year...right when I learned my body was once more degenerating from the damage no reconstructive surgery I had in abundance in the early 1980's could fix permanently.

Claire is the one who let me cry and tremble in her office. Claire is the one that heard me slip into a very dark, dangerous place. Claire is the one that kept me from giving up on this body I am forced to live out my days in. Claire

gave me unconditional love. Claire kept me whole while the medical world shattered me. 

She and my daughter kept me going.







I love you, Claire, and yes everyone, I will be sending this to Claire too. Claire, I am beyond lucky to have found you, thank you Lisa, and now that I have,

 I won't ever let you go. You have no idea how much it meant to me to know you find

my voice, soothing. After all you did for me to know my little-girl voice helped you? Ah Claire...but you better be

eating on schedule...and how I miss

sitting with you and TELLING you to eat because I could see the struggle to remain conscious on your dear face.

SO EAT CLAIRE!

I've mentioned Winnie many times before...my 76 year old friend who survived

the Blitz, came to America, fell in love with a black man in the South where racial tensions were at

powder-keg levels. In the past two years, Winnie has had to bury two of her children, the last one just two weeks ago.

Despite her anguish, she worries about me and my daughter. I spent over two hours with her

on the phone the day before yesterday. She is such a strong, beautiful soul, and

my daughter and I are so blessed to have her in our lives, but SHE feels blessed to have us in hers.








I ache for the pain, fear, and prejudice she endured, and I cannot fathom the horror of burying one child let alone two.

This brings me full circle now because this is where

Muse came into my life, and that part was covered in my previous posting.





There are others that I now greet with a

cheery wave or even a comfortably casual word. Prior to

Eric finding us, none of that happened...so Eric, thank you for giving us back what your brother took...




our ability to be part of

the out-there world.

You and Audrey may not have realized it when you began your hunt for us, but you saved us...oh and Eric, now that you are back in our lives,

I'm not letting you go either.

I love you little brother, and adore the family you brought with you.

And there you have my own HEART'S BELONGINGS.

Oh, and by the way...it is now 10:54 AM.

4 comments:

Karen Cote said...

Lin, you are just amazing. Your generous spirit drives all who come in contact with you to a greater good.

Love you,

Karen

Kay Dee Royal said...

Lin, Karen says it perfectly...your generous spirit drives all who come in contact with you to greater good - I love that because it sounds exactly like you.
You are a truly giving soul, and I feel very gracious you've come into my life through Muse.
Thank goodness you've moved forward...Bless you.
Kay Dee

lionmother said...

Lin, your ability to share the most intimate moments of your life and your own tips from horror to acceptance of that horror is amazing! You bring me to my knees in awe of your bravery and your stick to itness. After this post I want to put my arms around you and hug you!!! I agree with Karen. You can't say it better than that.:)

lionmother said...

I don't think I meant "tips". I believe that sentence should read: and your own trip from horror to acceptance of that horror is amazing!