Lipstick On Suicide

I can’t believe I’m writing about this, I can’t fully express myself verbally but I am about to try. I have got to get this out of my mind.

The night before Easter, right after my husband and I got the Easter goodies prepared for our son’s seeking adventure the next morning…I got the call.

My father usually never calls me past 8:30 at night as he knows we’re usually getting our son to sleep, but sometimes Clint (Dad) has had way too much to drink and calls me drunk and depressed. So when the phone showed he was calling at 9:30 PM, I just didn’t have it in me to answer the phone and deal with his ramblings like I have for the past 2 1/2 years. I waited for the little alert on my phone to show a voicemail was recorded, but it never showed. I assumed he realized the time or decided calling me drunk once again wasn’t a good idea. Until my phone rang again and it was my cousin. At that moment I knew something bad had happened and I had to answer. “Hey Katy it’s Josh, my mom wanted me to try to get a hold of you. You’re dad is in an ambulance on the way to the hospital. He’s overdosed on Ambien and has been drinking all day. That’s all I know. She tried calling you, but you didn’t answer and your sister won’t answer either so I’m not sure what to do next.”

My heart hit the floor and was pounding out of my chest. FUCK!

I kept calling my Aunts cell phone and she wouldn’t answer. I kept calling my sister and her husband and they wouldn’t answer. The drive from dad’s house to the hospital is 45 minutes and I was shaking uncontrollably. I called the hospital ahead of time to give them my name and number, who I was and that he was coming via ambulance and why. For one hour I sat with my heart pounding and dying inside with panic because I couldn’t reach anyone. Is he dead?

Clint tried to kill himself the day after my brother died a year and a half ago, luckily he only had ingested 5 Ambien before he was able to get stopped by his friend. Then 6 months later he parked his truck in the garage running and closed the door, to have been discovered by a friend in time again. Then 2 months later he called me drunk again telling me he was going to do kill himself as he just couldn’t walk this earth any longer, so I called the Sheriffs office to get there. They did, he said he was fine and they left.  He was really pissed at me that I did that to him. Since then he has spoken of killing himself on a weekly basis. I have called his doctor begging her to stop prescribing Ambien to him and she ignored me. I have begged him to get counseling, grief group, help of some sort…but he’s refused. Always the next day after he sobers up he says he feels stupid and doesn’t know why he gets that way. I have talked to him until blue in my face and he refuses to get help. I’ve cried, begged, threatened…you name it I’ve done it.

After 1 hour I called the hospital, all she could tell me is they were working on him and she would have the doctor call me. My father has been an alcoholic all his life, he has had many traumas and crisis that he’s refused to get help for. Recently his wife died of alcoholism complications 2 1/2 years ago and then his son 10 months later from a tragic fall from a cliff. I have yet to tackle writing about my brother’s death because it hurts so bad.

Basically my dad is a 73-year-old hot mess and I can’t save him.

Finally the phone rang and it was the doctor. Dad took 30 Ambien with a lot of alcohol, he was dead on arrival to the emergency room, but they were able to counteract the sedative and bring him back. He was placed on life support measures to help him breathe because the Ambien would cause him possible respiratory distress for the next 12 hours. The Doctor was admitting him to the ICU for close observation. He should survive this, but only time will tell.

Finally my sister called me and she was extremely intoxicated as well as her husband was, both of them very dysfunctional and incapable of rationalizing. My sister and I have medical power of attorney, but my copy is at my dad’s house 5 hours away, so we agreed she would get her copy faxed to the hospital the next morning.

I cried myself to sleep and woke up crying, slept for 3 hours and had to wake up and do the Easter egg hunt with our 4-year-old son. After a couple of hours awake I called the ICU and talked with the doctor, he said based on my dad’s history and his deep intent on dying he is going to recommend admitting my dad to a mental health facility for a few weeks. I started to prepare myself to drive there so I could help with the logistics and being there for when dad woke up. I called my sister and explained to her the hospital needed the POA as soon as possible and to please get it faxed there. She said she would.

Two hours later the doctor called and told me they got dad awake and extubated and he was breathing on his own so not to rush myself, that my dad would be in the ICU for a few days. I called my sister to explain this and she refused to talk to me because she was drunk and couldn’t deal with it, as was her husband.

My Aunt lives with my dad, she had gone up to my dad’s bedroom the night before to check on him and say good night and found him unresponsive with the empty bottle. She saved his life. That next day I called her and asked her to please grab my dad’s legal papers for the hospital and she refused. She knew he was going to possibly go into a long-term admission to the mental health facility and she didn’t want to lose her drinking buddy, nor the control she has over him. She also told me that she wouldn’t let me into the house, so don’t bother showing up. Later that day my Dad called me and told me I wasn’t allowed to come and he put an order with the nurses not to let me in.

Apparently my Aunt told my dad that I was going up to commit him into the mental ward and use the medical POA as my tool. My sister was refusing to help because she thought I was doing the same.

Seriously? Even with the medical POA, I don’t have the power to do this; but in all of their codependent alcoholic dysfunction they couldn’t see that. Even if I could have done this, it’s to save his life!

So now what?

The next day psych does their interview with him and he told them everything they needed to hear so he couldn’t get admitted. Small country town therapist, NOT a psychiatrist made this decision. Instead she agreed to let him go home and that he had to enroll into a strict outpatient mental health program. Mainly because all of his previous attempts aren’t documented, because none of his codependent alcoholic friends didn’t want to cause problems and get him the help.

The day he was to be discharged he had a minor issue that had to keep him in the hospital one more night. That evening he finally started alcohol withdrawal. He is so pickled in Black Velvet that it took 3 days for the withdrawal to start. The hospital started him on a sedative to keep him comfortable and calm, but still discharging him home the next day.

I tried calling my sister again, and I was immediately placed into voicemail.  I called her husband and got the same.  I sent a text to both of them and still no response. Through our mom’s death and our brother’s death, I was in charge of everything, because no one else could stay sober and get the job done.

I watched my mother slowly kill herself with alcohol, most ugly heartbreaking and emotional fuck of my life. Now I’m faced to watch my father do the same? Yet the suicide attempt is really messing with me. Why aren’t my sister and I and his two grandson’s enough to want to live for? Why does he tell me how much he loves me, yet chooses the fucked up way out? Why leave us (actually me) with another mess to clean up?

I can’t take it anymore. I can’t sit on the sidelines and watch him continue down this road. I can’t continue in a relationship with him, my sister and aunt; which is actually a very sick triangulation of emotional fucks of narcissism. My son had to watch his mommy cry all day on Easter and at four years old can’t understand nor should he have to. My husband feeling deeply pained to watch my pain, knowing there’s nothing he could do either to ease my pain. Then my oldest son who is 22 knowing that his most favorite Grandpa is a destructive mess. Not only can’t I take it anymore, I can’t do it, and I can’t let my family go through this anymore.

So I quit. I wrote my dad and sister both a letter telling them goodbye. Letting them know that how this all transpired is beyond dysfunctional and completely unacceptable. I’ve learned that when trying to help an addict, you should never work harder than the addict. That I am tired and exhausted from trying to help and be there as expected, but only if I support them in their endeavors to continue to be sick. I won’t do it. I deserve better than this, my husband and children deserve better than this. That I am going back into counseling so I can make sense of what the fuck just happened. Heal myself once again and walk away from their choices.

Before I mailed these letters I received a voicemail from my dad. Damn it…you can block numbers from calling you or texting, but it doesn’t stop the voicemail. In the small valley he lives in, everyone knows everything about you and what happens. One neighbor checked on my aunt and asked what had happened, because ambulances with lights and sirens in a small town that has no stop light is noticed. My aunt told this neighbor, who then told another and it was spread like wildfire within one day. Most of the people up there know me very well, I used to live there and they’ve all been extremely supportive of me after my brother died up there. I received messages from people and calls and I verified the stories and corrected the mistakes, but I won’t lie for my dad. I won’t make this a dirty family secret, because those secrets will eat you alive. They wanted to know why I wasn’t there yet, so I told them the truth.  I was stopped for bullshit dysfunctional reasons. In turn many of those people reached out to my dad, as they too have had run-ins with my aunt and they also think she is a bad influence on my dad. They spoke their truth.

As part of my dads embarrassment for what he did and is continuing to do, he called me and let me know the following. I needed to basically get the “burr” out of my butt about my aunt and that I should be grateful she saved his life and that all I have been doing his “hurting” him. Wow. Hello pot…have you met kettle yet? Look in the mirror dad! I will not lie for you, I will no longer be your escape goat as the “black sheep” of the family, I am choosing MY family and health over your sick choices. Oh and by the way you hurt me.

Can you tell I’m extremely angry with him? As well as my sister and Aunt? Can you tell my pain runs so deep just typing this brings tears to my eyes? I’m the one and only one making the healthy decisions and I am being punished for it. S fuck it. The letters have been sent, written with a lot of love and compassion, but most importantly honesty. It’s time to cut those ties that have bound me and restricted my growth, it’s time for me to fly. I refuse to put lipstick on suicide.

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Post Conviction Paralysis

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This daunting image is what it felt like after John was convicted and mom died.  I felt captured in mid-air leaving one nightmare and entering another.  Full of uncontrollable fear. I had nowhere to go, nowhere to run and no safety net to catch me.  What’s even more symbolic of this picture, is it happened 9 days after his sentence, 9/11 was felt so deep down inside me this moment resonated with me and I couldn’t get it out of my head.

For years I have had dreams of falling from a tall building or cliff, wide awake feeling the crisis of the moment all the way down, and right before I hit the ground I wake up.  This is a recurrent dream for me and I’ve had it since I was a pre-teen. This is how I’ve felt since I last posted about this douche bag.  Over the past week I have kept feeling like something is about to happen.  Something bad, maybe an anniversary or birthday; it didn’t hit me until today.  January 30, 2002 was the night I was attacked at my home.

My subconsciousness knew this was the next chapter of John, hell I even knew it but couldn’t come to writing about it.  Yet this moment has been gnawing at me and this anniversary is not one to celebrate.  The longer I ignore this demon gnawing at me the more I will crawl into my hole.  So, I’m taking my jump by choice, I’m jumping into the next round of my story and it is my choice to do so.  Praying this is a healing moment.

From August 2001 until January, 30, 2002; I lived in a cave.  I didn’t go places, I shut myself off from everyone, broke up with a guy I was dating and I lived in constant fear.  John wasn’t put in prison, there was still nothing protecting me.  I still woke up 4-6 times per night checking and re checking every door and window in the house.  Kept my porch lights on, alarm armed and my gun within quick reach.  I even had a knife hidden between my mattress set.  My dog was a wolf hybrid and she was a badass and very protective.  I got a job that was 45 miles away from my home, I left medicine as a nurse and went into the mortgage industry.  I felt that I needed to change my career so he couldn’t find me again, driving to a from places was different every day and I read every book I could to learn more about stalking and the effects.

On the day of January 30th, I went to work and my son was staying with his father that night, we had a set schedule of when he would be with his dad.  On those nights I would work late, I dove into my work so I didn’t have to be at home alone.  When I got home and pulled into my driveway it was about 9:30 pm and obviously dark outside.  I noticed immediately that the side gate to my backyard was open and I immediately thought only about my dog.  What if she got out, how will I find her, she had a doggie door she could use.  I decided to go through the gate and call for her, because then if she was home she would come through the doggie door and meet me in the backyard.  It’s a pitch black area, no lights on this side of the house, as I entered through the gate I yelled for her.  Then out of nowhere I hear “Hello Katy” and I’m immediately hit in the forehead with a large object.  I know I lost consciousness because I woke up face down in the dirt with someone sitting on my back with a rope around my neck.  Fuck I’m having flashbacks typing this, I’m shaking.

The fight or flight in me kicked in immediately and I started fighting.  Trying to grab at his hands, but he had gloves on and a Carthartt canvas feeling coat.  The rope was really thin and I couldn’t get my fingers between it and my throat.  I flailed around the best I could and then I realized my car keys were stabbing me in the leg and I grabbed for them.  I had a key fob with an alarm and that car alarm was loud as hell and I managed to push the alarm button.  Then he was gone.  He took off and I don’t know which way he went, when I realized he was off of me I got up and ran to my door and got in, pushed the house alarm panic button and locked myself in the bathroom with the phone.  I coward to the floor in fetal position calling 911 and what felt to be hours was merely minutes before a I heard sirens and a female voice at the bathroom door.  She told me who she was and it was safe to come out.  I came out to my home full of police officers and flashlights and questions coming at me.  I was coughing because my throat was swelling up from the strangulation, I had blood all over my hands and didn’t know here it was coming from, I couldn’t breathe through my nose and I was covered in dirt with rips in my blouse and holes in the knees of my slacks, and I was missing a shoe.  I kept asking for my dog, where the fuck is my dog?  A lady officer told me she was asleep on my bed, breathing but she wouldn’t wake up.  I ran to her and cried and was dropping blood off my face onto her and couldn’t comprehend shit.

They called for an ambulance to take me to the hospital, animal control took my dog to get checked out at a vet and I couldn’t stop shaking.  I shook like I had hypothermia, I felt paralyzed and confused.  The emergency room doctor looked me over, took x-rays of my throat and CT of my head and nose. Gave me one hell of a sedative to calm me down and watched over me for hours.  Meanwhile I had this detective, a woman, who was there to ask me questions.  I explained over and over what transpired.  It was fresh in my head, and I kept telling myself “you have to keep remembering, close your eyes, keep the imprint in your mind”.  I remember the doctor giving me a steroid for the swelling in my throat, a narcotic for pain and the sedative all in my system.  I was at that moment just trying to piece things together, all these drugs and I couldn’t keep anything straight.

Once the hospital released me the detective took me to the police department.  Took me into an interrogation room with mirrored windows and a camera.  Then proceeded to ask me more of the same questions.  I kept relaying to her about the stalker, kept telling her to go find John.  I felt like she just wouldn’t listen.  I got very frustrated and upset and demanded to see the lead detective that helped with John in the first place and she kept saying “He’s not on duty, I am”.  After telling her my story and what happened, she said I couldn’t go home because the police were processing the scene and would be there all night.  I had to stay at a neighbor’s house. My sister lived across the street and when the officers originally went over there to tell her what had happened, she was high or drunk and told them she just didn’t have time to deal with any of it.  Yeah, my own sister, the self-absorbed trained narcissist just couldn’t deal with it. So I stayed at the neighbors.  I laid on their couch, I tried to sleep but seriously who was I kidding.  I couldn’t sleep.

The next day I went home, called the vet and went to pick up my dog.  She had been sedated with a hotdog laced with an animal sedative. I called my dad Clint and he was on his way to my house, he was 5 hours away.  My son stayed with his father.  I just laid in my bed, waiting….

The detective called me the next day and asked if I had any ideas of who would want to hurt me.  I busted out laughing. “Are you fucking kidding me? Do you not remember me telling you over and over about John?  Did you find him, did you interview him?” Her response took this trauma to a whole new level, “No we didn’t, we felt that if we came to him about you it would reopen his obsession with you.” UN-FUCKING-BELIEVABLE! She asked if she could call my psychologist to see if maybe she could understand better what I’ve been through with the stalker.  Weird ass question, but okay, please go for it.  I had an appointment with Madeline the next day because of this attack, maybe she could shine some light on me about this detective and what the fuck she is doing.  Madeline trained Police Officers on this type of violence and the victims.

That night my dad was with me shaking his head in shock, then told me he was going to run an errand and would be back so I wasn’t alone for long.  5 hours later Clint stumbled into my house, so drunk he couldn’t even speak.  Good ol’ dad went and got drunk, that was his coping mechanism and his way of helping me.

My support system, non-existent.  Sister didn’t want to be bothered and didn’t even come to check on me once, because she was headed to Mexico for a vacation.  Dad was drunk the whole time.  My ex-husband was threatening to get a court order to take my son away (once again) on the grounds of an unsafe home.  I had no friendships because I cut them all off during my cave hibernation.  I was so very alone there were no words to explain how alone I was. I went to see Madeline that next day, she told me that the detective hinted around that she thought I did this to myself.  It “Just seemed weird that I was able to get away so easily. That based on her experience she’d never seen anything like it before.”

If you’re sitting there with your mouth wide open and shaking your head, yeah, that just happened.  Madeline knew me better than that, she knew I was telling the truth.  I’m still not sure how I hit myself over the head and wrapped a “shoestring” around my neck and strangled myself.  Not sure how I broke my nose.  Really not sure how I could have sedated my dog while I was at work for 12 hours and she was still sedated when I got home.  Apparently according to Inspector Gadget, I did this to myself and she refused to further investigate.

At that very moment I was crying so hard in Madeline’s office I couldn’t breathe.  I hyperventilated and told her I was just going to kill myself.  Fuck it.  Nobody cares, everyone around me is fucked in the head, I’m scared as hell and I will not live like this any longer.  My .38 would have been my best choice, hollow point bullets, blow my fucking head off.

Madeline being the badass psychologist she is, immediately got me admitted into a behavioral health hospital for a full workup.  She even drove me there.  She called my father and told him to go home, that I was admitted and didn’t want anyone to know where to find me.  She told him his behavior did more harm than good. She arranged for my dog to be looked after by neighbors.  She also called the detective and informed her that her disbelief in my attack was destructive, unprofessional and would be reported to the Chief.

I was finally in a safe place.  Getting real help.  Being cared for.  To this day, I can’t wear a scarf, no tight necklaces or fashionable “chokers” and I can’t be grabbed from behind. My little boy now likes to ride on my back, and I have to remind him each time not to grab tightly around my neck and I have to remind myself, it’s just my little boy.

 

Physical & Emotional

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“There are so many secret wounds, so many types of hidden scars. The soul, being stronger than we think, can survive all mutilations and the marks upon it make it perfect and complete.”

This is from the PBS series Call The Midwife Season 6 episode 6. I love this series because of all of the stories of true life. It’s not just in today’s society we see aweful injustices on women. It’s been happening for years, behind closed doors, victims kept silent.

The ending spoken narrative, stuck with me. Something to reflect on.

 

The Stalker Part 3

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By this time in the story John was served his Temporary Restraining Order by the Sheriff’s office.  During a gullible state I hoped he would see the fear he had caused and choose to walk away from me and never contact me again.  However, the TRO fueled the psycho’s fire within and he became worse.

I lived across the street from my sister, and she had her own business which she ran out of her home.  I had spoken to many people at my work in the past about her and her business, helping her drum up business.  Little did I know John had also inquired about her by speaking with others we worked with before he left the hospital.  In psycho stalker fashion he called her under an assumed name and set up an appointment with her.  She had never seen a picture of him, this was way before social media, all she knew was he was a psycho stalker and he had worked with me.

He came to her house with an assumed name and spent about 20 minutes speaking with her about “business” stuff and then started asking all sorts of questions about me.  She felt it odd and strange that he kept circling back around to me and then her gut hit her hard about the unsettled feeling she realized she had with him; she asked him point-blank “You’re not Stan, you’re John aren’t you?”  He stumbled in his response for words and she immediately got up and yelled for her husband in a panic while leaving the room.  Within moments of her husband and her walking back into the room together, John was gone out of the house and walking through of the gate of their yard.  Her husband ran out there and yelled at him to never return as he was driving away.

My sister called me in a panic and told me everything, I couldn’t even speak nor respond to her.  I jumped in my car and went home and called the police.  They came over, took the report and said “Since you weren’t home at the time and the restraining order doesn’t include her, there’s nothing we can do.”

The mantra I kept hearing from them was “there’s nothing we can do”…

 

Desperation, Frustration….a little rant

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It’s been a long time since I’ve written.  Life can really get in the way of being able to see ANYTHING!  What does life look like for Katy right now?

  1. Diagnosed with 3 autoimmune diseases.  Able to manage one with diet.  The other 2 are apparently managed with medications, one is prednisone the other hydroxychloriquine.  Prednisone can’t be long-term, causes crazy bruising and causes other health concerns, finished my second course and now it’s out of my system and all symptoms have come back.  Hydroxychloriquine takes months to work, and that’s if it decides to work.
  2. Daily symptoms: extraordinary pain in my feet, burning pins and needles with swelling, swollen painful hands, headaches, low back pain, body shaking uncontrollably from the inside out, insomnia, mood swings, brain fog and confusion, ringing in my ears, fatigue, low blood pressure, dizziness and abdominal pain.
  3. Recently had to move because our landlord decided to sell our house AFTER we signed another 4 year lease agreement.  Have to love the little clauses in a lease.
  4. Husband’s employer decided to reorganize their departments, which left him out of employment, so we lost our health insurance.  We also lost our church, our second home and a lot of our community.  A churches words on stage only run that deep, integrity doesn’t always run deep behind the closed doors of the church.  I haven’t lost my faith in God, but I have in the people who teach it.  Yes they are also human and sin and make mistakes, but actions speak louder than words.
  5. New health insurance is crap and beyond expensive, so I’ve lost my psychologist and psychiatrist, back to a conglomerate healthcare system that has the WORSE mental health department.
  6. Just had the one year anniversary of my brothers tragic death, which is still so fresh I can’t even touch the surface of speaking about it.

I’m done with seeing and experiencing all of this.  Who gets me through it?  God.  I know He has a plan for us and everything we are going through, I know there is a light and I am seeing glimmers of it in the distance.  But-it feels so far away and hard to catch up to.  I want to feel energy again, unity, pain-free, confident and directed.  Instead I feel slow, alone, pained, uncertain and reeling with desperation.

One step at a time, one day at a time, one prayer at a time…it’ll all come back.  Yet my patience runs thin.

Psalm 23: The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.  He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters.  He restores my soul; He guides me in the path of righteousness for His name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.  You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You have anointed my head with oil; my cup overflows.  Surely goodness and loving kindness will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

Blogiversary

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I started this blog one year ago in an effort to work through my past and present realities. I’ve grown in knowledge based on putting my feelings and experiences into words. I’ve made some amazing “blogging” friends who have similar experiences in life. I’ve even managed to piss some people off.

My goal was to create a space where I could raise awareness to CPTSD, and it evolved from there. I wish I could be writing more currently, but my health isn’t allowing it. My “brain fog” is a mother fucker at its best. So while I’m not able to put feelings and thoughts into words, I’m still going to do my best to raise awareness.

Thank you to those of you who have been loyal readers, without you…I have no voice.

Letter to 30 year old Katy

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Dear Katy;

It’s me, 46-year-old you, and I want you to know something deep from my heart.

During the time of the stalker, not only were you in trauma from him, but your mother was dying as well. You had double the trauma happening to you with no support or advice on how to handle it. This combination is a rare occurrence and you need to be recognized for that.

Every step you took to protect you and your son was spot on. It’s not your fault the stalker became obsessed with you and terrorized you. You had no coping skills except for what you were taught, which was very little. I recognize your pain and desperation for help, how helpless and scared you felt.

As mom was dying, you had the same feelings about that. You felt helpless and scared, you’d never experienced anything like this. It was your first grieving experience with death.

If you’re feeling shame because maybe you’re choices during that time weren’t the best, IT’S OKAY! You have nothing to be ashamed of. I give you full permission to grieve these traumas. I support you in all you did and why did it.

Katy I love you no matter what, I forgive you, I’m proud of you and I’m sorry you had to experience this. I have to forgive us for any shame or guilt you felt during this time. You were a child of God then, but our eyes have now been opened about His love for us. I’m proud of you for doing what you had to do to survive. But you need to see YOU MADE IT! You’re alive today and your mind and choices are at their healthiest. You’re an example of God’s love and grace. Your heart, soul, mind and strength was God working through you. You are now a queen, lover, magi and warrior because of what you’ve been through and you came out shining! I have so much empathy for you, because you didn’t do anything to make this all happen. You were a victim of circumstance and a scared young woman. Although you didn’t receive empathy from your family and your friends walked away from you, please know THAT was NOT your fault. Not everyone can face that ocean of shit and have the strength to move through it. That ocean has been cleaned up and dried up, it’s now clean, refreshing, relaxing and Gods beautiful creation.

This ocean of life can be unforgiving through the storms, but you now know how to navigate through it better. When the storms pass, you come out a bit scathed, but You’re alive! That’s badass!

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You are loved and supported by me no matter what. Katy I’m proud of you and I love you. 💛  Now move forward and keep fighting because I’ve got your back! You’re safe and I will protect you at all costs!

I love you and God Bless you,

Katy at 46 years old