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January 05, 1999


i want to write about everything here, but i can't.

todd or todd's friends read it.

i want to write about what's going on inside my head, but i can't.

todd or todd's family reads it.

i am now a prisoner in my own webspace, fearful of writing the wrong thing and evoking a response that isn't beneficial to me or todd.

so, be as it may, my hands are tied temporarily. i've done what i can to prevent the intrusion into my life by the people who are part of it, but i can't really block but so much from happening with the controls i have on this end. so i give up. or give in. or whatever.

i'm pissed.

todd took away from me the only saving grace i had... my writing. well, not really took away... but took the pleasure out of sharing it in the manner that i've grown so accustomed to.

i can't explain why i like to write and share my life the way i do. i just do. it's like any author or journalist or writer...we write to communicate. this was my way of speaking, i guess.

and i'll get it back. and write. and post it all for the world to see. i'm just in a bit of a predicament at the moment. if i say too much, it could be used against me in a court of law. if i don't say anything, it drives me nuts.

so i don't know about the future of NOW or or anything. all i know is that my life is not my own at the moment, and that divorce is the route i'm headed for if the way things have been going is any indication.

but no more feeling sorry for myself or any of that jazz. i'm taking the high road from now on... not biting the bait to argue or fight or any of that shit. there's just no point in acting like a child about things that are beyond my control.

i don't need the crap, you know.

simplify, simplify, simplify.

the rest should come easy.

January 02, 1999


god help me i'm so freakin' bored i could just scream.

this has got to be the LONGEST damned holiday season ever. and nothing seems to be going the way i want it to, so i'm going to waste my time and just whine whine whine.


but i should shut up already.. i realize that. i should just be thankful for all the wonderful things that i do have, and not be so damned pessimistic about what i can't have at this point.

i want my own place, for one. living with my parents is okay most of the time, but this weekend i've started to feel a bit cramped and muffled. like i can't say or do what i want.

and to top that off, my mother has gone about defending my husband's actions. friday night he got upset with me when we were having a conversation about me not coming back home anytime soon, and he punched a hole in the laundry room door. i blinked at him, gathered my things and left.

when i told mom, all she could say was something like "you have to understand that he's going through a difficult time right now."

um. HELLOOOOOO? he's not the only one going through a difficult time right now. i'm your daughter. i need your support. why are you constantly telling me how difficult this is on everyone else?

it's the lowest blow i could have possibly received, but i guess in a small way i figured she'd say something like that to me. i have never had a close relationship with my mother and don't feel that i can trust her 100% with my deepest thoughts or anything. so it's really hard on me right now having to lean on my father, who is a few hours away, and the few friends i've managed to keep around.

but the point was for me to learn to depend on myself and to trust myself and stuff. so i guess from that perspective everything is going ok. i just want the emotional support from my mother that i've never received and it hurts that i don't get it. what kind of book can help me get beyond that?

like i said, i'm just in a whiny bitchy mood. i need to get a life.

the email i've gotten from people in the last couple of days has been really uplifting, i might add. i need to get off my lazy ass and return some email, but that's a whole separate ballgame. i've finally set up my computer in my mother's living room and have it all working great again... but she's only got one phone line and i can't manage to find a good time to be online, check my email and respond appropriately before someone wants to use the phone or is concerned about what i'm doing.

i'm going nuts, people. i'm losing my freakin' mind.

i need my old part-time job at the newspaper back so i can have an opportunity to earn money and get out of the house and have a life or something of the sort.

and more than anything, i need to stop whining.

hurry up weekend and END. it's time for the holiday season to be OVER.


December 30, 1998


typically i find a day or two to reflect on my life as another year draws to a close, but quite honestly, i'm so damned tired of introspection that all i really want to do is crawl under a rock and die.

the holiday season is way too long and way too depressing for me to say i enjoy it. i've been faced with living life on my own during one of the most challenging seasons of the entire year, only to have everyone i lean on turn to lean on other people. though i'm sure there is something to be said for self-sufficiency, christmas and new year's is not the time to be testing out that theory.

but i dunno. i shouldn't complain. tomorrow is new year's eve, and i have plans to sit with my daughter and todd on top of raleigh's tallest building and look down at raleigh's acorn as it drops and welcomes 1999. if i didn't have those plans, i'd probably be home reading a book and watching dick clark again.

i've noticed that i've started to compartmentalize my life again, breaking it down into bearable little pieces that i can manage one-on-one. i'm happy mostly with the decisions i have been making, but i'm having a hard time being forthright and honest with everyone about how i'm feeling about it all. that's my biggest problem anyway... being honest about who i am and what i want.

i don't need pressure, that's for sure. or the twenty questions ordeal that makes me feel like i'm on trial. so far the best thing i've found is time. taking this timeout for myself has been a lifesaver... and it's making me a better person to be around, too.

baby steps, i keep telling myself. go forward, not backwards.

and i've even developed a little mantra that i say to myself as i attempt to reconstruct my life: you can't see into the future if you're too busy looking into the past.

(just to remind myself not to take everything too seriously, you know.)

as for resolutions, i have the standard run of the mill ones floating around in my brain... lose weight, learn things, make new friends, expand my mind, open myself up a little more, etc.

and yourself?

December 28, 1998


"here you go," mom said as she handed me what appeared to be cracked pieces of a car's parking light. "by the way, i backed into your car last night and split your front bumper and cracked your parking light. you're holding what fell onto the street."


have you ever said "this day can't possibly get any worse" and then turned around and it gets worse? my day yesterday started off fine and grew progressively worse as it wore on. i finally gave up and went to bed just to make it end... and then i couldn't sleep.

i'm tired of life fucking with my sleep.


i woke up on sunday at my dad's house at the beach. the kids and i had driven down for a weekend family christmas gathering at my dad's new condo that he and his wife janet just finished buying and redecorating this summer. my aunt carol and her family came, as did two of my deceased grandmother pickett's siblings, my sister and her husband and two kids, and my dad's father and stepmother.

it was the first time the entire holiday i felt the warmth of the season.

i also had a long talk with janet who helped me tremendously by making me feel more normal about what i've been feeling in regard to my recent separation from todd. i finally do feel like i'm going to make it through this crap (and that's just what it is... crap) and be healthy and happy for once.

i'm the eternal optimist. sometimes it just takes me time to find the angle i'm looking for.


ok, so about a week ago i finally got my pearl jam live on two legs cd in the mail from (i shop there exclusively) and i have now determined that it's the one saving grace to this perfectly shitty time in my life. it reminds me a great deal of the pearl jam concert i attended on august 31. no words i can say can describe the feeling i get when i hear some of these songs.

"let music control your attitude," someone told me recently. "don't listen to things that will depress you."

pearl jam seems the perfect fit for me now. keeps me uplifted enough to maintain a trace of optimism about what tomorrow may hold.

December 27, 1998


i need to write. i don't have time... i don't even have my computer set up at the moment. it's sorta discouraging, but at the same time it gives me something to look forward to.

christmas was good, though difficult at moments. i'm glad the season is drawing to a close.

i'll write more soon. 1999 has lots of possibilities, does it not? :)

December 22, 1998


The waiting drove me're finally here and I'm a mess I take your riches back...can't let you roam inside my head I don't want to take what you can give... I would rather starve than eat your bread... I would rather run but I can't walk... Guess I'll lie alone just like before...

i wake up each morning with a renewed sense of optimism about my life and what i can do with it. if anything good has come out of recent events, it's that. the rest of it is just too new to either like or dislike at this point.

All the things that others want for me... Can't buy what I want because it's free...

i drove home last night (home now being mom's house) and went an older, less familiar route toward durham. i drove highway 70 until it blended in with I-85 south into durham. i then took the gregson street exit that goes past northgate mall, over club boulevard and into an older, more established section of durham.

Even flow, thoughts arrive like butterflies Oh, he don't know, so he chases them away Someday yet, he'll begin his life again Life again, life again...

at the intersection of trinity avenue, i glanced over at the church that i used to attend when i lived in durham as a child. i thought in particular about a lock-in that the youth group i was a member of had at that church, and how billy had attended and i mesmerized by him. that was at the beginning.

and he still gives his love, he just gives it away the love he receives is the love that is saved and sometimes is seen a strange spot in the sky... a human being that was given to fly...

i smiled and kept driving until the street met forest hills drive and took me around the corner to kent street, where i turned into mom's neighborhood.

and now I rub my eyes for he has returned seems my preconceptions are what should have been burned for he still smiles and he's still strong nothing's changed but the surrounding bullshit that has grown and now he's home and we're laughing like we always did my same old same old friend...

there is something really comforting about familiarity and a sense of belonging. the past greets you most of the time with open arms, but it's only there to remind you of where you've been... not really to push you toward anything that will be.

Once divided...nothing left to subtract... Some words when spoken...can't be taken back... Walks on his own...with thoughts he can't help thinking... Future's above...but in the past he's slow and sinking... Caught a bolt 'a lightnin'...cursed the day he let it go...

December 20, 1998


i'm at work now, somewhere in between my house that i no longer live in and my mother's house which will become my new residence for some time to come. it's over, or rather, todd asked me finally to leave the house.

i guess it was hard on us both. i knew that i was having a difficult time staying there.... i just didn't realize how much it was bothering him. so today when he asked me to either agree to "get help or leave" i chose to leave.

i don't like placing myself in situations now where i don't have complete control over what happens to me. it's not that i'm fighting getting help and talking to someone about things that have been and are going on in my life, it's just that i don't like being pushed into something that i've had no decision in.

i'm upset mostly at myself for allowing things to get this way. yes, i was mad at todd this afternoon when he kept pointing the finger at me, but i knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that i deserved all the blame. i am the one who failed here, the one who failed to live up to my end of the bargain. i should have known years ago, way before we were ever married, that if i couldn't be honest about how i was feeling that i shouldn't have gotten married. i convinced myself that my feelings just didn't count... that what he wanted and needed was more important than anything i was feeling or had ever felt.

i was wrong.

and now, as a result, i've hurt a lot of people. and i'm taking the responsibility for that as well. the aloneness i've been feeling the last few hours is indescribable... and it runs rather deep. so does the pain, and the sadness, and this overwhelming feeling of failure.

it's hard not just breaking down and crying, you know. i sometimes can't help it, and the tears just flow. but this is what i wanted.. this is what i've longed for for years... just to be on my own and to live my life as i choose. it just feels so damn scary... and i don't like the feeling i have right now. everything in my world is up in the air.


needless to say, i'm lacking greatly in the christmas spirit department. i don't feel one bit in the mood for giving and sharing. i don't feel like i deserve any of this, much less anything anyone gives me. i just want it all to be over... all to go away....

i feel like crawling under a rock and dying.

and todd will never believe me probably, but i never really meant to hurt him the way i did and have. i just didn't know how to say the words i should have said so long ago. i didn't know how to tell him that i wasn't the right person for him... that he deserved better, and that i was sorry for not speaking up.

he says now he's not going to speak to me until i get some help... so i guess i won't be speaking to him for some time to come... except when the conversation involves the children. i will get help, but when i have benefits that will pay for counseling and when i have sorted through some of the mess i've created.

it's really hard becoming familiar with my surroundings when everything i've grown accustomed to over the past 16 years of my life is suddenly gone.

i forsee long days and nights at work now... and new patterns to facilitate my mental health and well being. even though all of what has happened has been horribly bad and i probalby handled it all incorrectly, i know that what i'm doing is the right thing for me. that's about the only thing i'm certain of. it's just going to take some time for that rightness to stop feeling so wrong.

December 17, 1998


like the fire

some days i write like the fire, burning through thoughts and words
and emotions in rapid succession
. isn't one of those days, my friend. or at least
it wasn't. and then the emotion was poured on like
gasoline and further fueled by the wind.

they say a storm is brewing in the distance. i can smell it
in the air, feel it in my bones, see it in your eyes.

gently, swiftly, it falls to the ground
dancing downward in the spiral
looking for a new space to fill

it rests, but only briefly before turning into the wind again...
.......... he smiled, pulled her close, nuzzled his nose near her
neck and kissed her affectionately.
she couldn't help herself. she giggled.
it's those moments....the pure sweet innocent ones of a bond forming
the surety of tomorrow's coming
and the understanding of connections that run deep

it's those moments i want
it's those moments that define me
it's those moments that define my life
....the fire burns, steadily, guiding itself to the undergrowth


and the ever-observant wildlife watches safely from a distance before turning to run away in search of a new home

the cycle of normalcy begins, and time moves on
inching forward quietly
taking with it our pain
and the ashen memories
of yesteryear

December 16, 1998


ok, so i won my first three eBay auctions... in a row! i only bid on three items... and lo and behold, i was the high bidder in all of them.

the first item i won was a Strangers in Paradise trade paperback signed by Terry Moore, the author... i'm an avid collector of SiP stuff and really admire Terry's work, so i just HAD to have it. you know. i actually own the trade paperback anyway, so perhaps i'll sell my current copy or something.

and then i big on a double-cd set of Tori Amos, live in Atlanta, GA (9/98)... from her current tour! this will make THREE bootlegs i own of her current tour... i can't even begin to describe how much i enjoy hearing live tori.

and then i bought another tori amos bootleg from the kansas city show of her 1996 dew drop inn tour.

so yeah, i'm happy. i also ordered the new pearl jam live cd the other day, along with the raspberry swirl single (have you seen the picture of her on the cover? omigod!). sometimes you just have to indulge, you know?

i guess i'm over-compensating for how shitty i've been feeling. just this morning i snapped when mom started questioning me about the family christmas get together, which we are having this sunday. i'm just not in the spirit whatsoever, and my mind is more on relaxing and not having to answer difficult questions.

mom kept apologizing, i kept saying i had to go. i hung up and sat here at my desk for a little while and cried. typical of how things are going for me lately.

i need to talk to jonathan. sometimes just saying the things on my mind make the day a bit better.

so blah.

tomorrow is another day.

December 15, 1998


the internet is awfully quiet these days. quiet and at the same time eerily loud.

i haven't much to say, honestly. my emotions are too wrapped up inside me, so tightly wound that i don't have a clue how to deal with them. sometimes you just have to sit back and let these things come on their

so that's my plan. take it one day at a time, think a little bit into the future and try to figure out what it is that i want and need.

i have a great opportunity this week to spend some quality time with my family and to get into the holiday season. i'm taking it.

it's weird, though, you know. at the same time i feel like i'm losing part of myself somehow. normal never stays that way, does it?

and todd bought me roses... 6 of them.... told me he didn't buy them to make me feel bad or guilty or any of that stuff. said he bought them because i was special. he even included a little teddy bear named as such.

it's the second bear i've ever owned. and he bought both of them. the night we discussed the kids and the house and who would get what, i sat in the living room in the dark holding the other teddy bear, a big one that easy to hug. i cried a lot that night. and i cry a lot when i think about what we talked about that night.

it's those little things that make it so hard, even when i know he didn't mean for me to feel this way. it's knowing that i am hurting him, knowing that i am finally being honest and that i can break out of a 13-year rut with myself and get healthy. it's hard... no matter how callous i may come across sometimes.

i can't help but be who i am. no apologies.

December 14, 1998


ok, so i've found something new to be addicted to: eBay! i've already placed several bids on several items, all relating to tori, mind you. and i just can't stop looking.

mmmm. eBay.... mmmm.

god help me, i still haven't done any christmas shopping. the way i figure, i will just buy everyone in my family gift certificates from and be done with it. the kids will get cool stuff, i won't have to face the lines in the malls anywhere... and besides, shopping online is fun!


and as the case is, i'm really not in the mood to talk about or deal with recent happenings at my house. normalcy is gone, all measures of it, and i walk on thin ice much of the time.

it's not easy, folks. it really isn't.

i have mood swings from hell. so does todd.

i have absolutely NO christmas spirit this year. bah humbug.

but i'm curious, anyone know of any good books about separation and/or divorce? let me know!

December 12, 1998


i probably shouldn't be writing this, seeing as i'm about to leave to go to the company christmas party and i'm really in the dumps, but i sorta wanted to document the day.

information overload, you know.

maybe some day i'll feel like writing about it.

happy holidays... ho ho ho... i'm off to get drunk.


December 11, 1998


it's friday, at last.

i sit here at work, surrounded by the mess i've been creating all week long. an apache server book is open to a section detailing the ins and outs of server side includes. i read how to turn them on in the configuration files for the server, did what it said to, but my results weren't successful. the ssi calls i've been implementing don't work, and i don't know why.

so there's another reason i'm glad it's friday. i'm tired of thinking.

there's also a post-donation information sheet on my desk that i received following my whole blood donation this morning. i still feel a bit light-headed. it could be that i haven't eaten anything much today. a cookie, some juice.

i really just want to go home and crawl under the covers.

yeah so. i talked to todd today, and he's mad about something. i feel like i go around half my life wondering who is mad at me and who isn't. what have i done? did i forget to do something? why does everyone seem angry at me all the time?

i give up trying to figure it out. i figure todd will eventually come home, call me, tell me why he's mad and then i'll be left to deal with whatever it is that is ticking him off.

god help me, i'm tired of talking. i am tired of avoiding the emotional side of this whole thing too. why did i ever agree to stay through the holidays is beyond me. it was a mistake...but i refuse to leave until i've spoken to my attorney and figured out what can and can't be done.

i don't want to fuck up anything, you know. i'm already putting the damage on heavily.

so yeah.

on the way to work this morning, i cried. i thought a lot about my kids, a lot about what it's going to be like not to have them around. and then i just couldn't stop the tears for a moment or two.

i know there will be many more moments like this to come. i just hate thinking about it.

i guess i can't prevent the world from falling down around me, trapping me inside for a little while and making me dig my way out. shit is going to happen. there will be no milk some days.


so i woke up this morning around 5 or so and got on irc. had a good time, for a change, yaking it up with people in #xircon that i hadn't seen in awhile and meeting others. dave even popped online, fixed the tcl that was broken, chatted with me a few moments and then wandered away from his window to program or something.

i bullshitted most of the time, as i often do. i read email. i stopped long enough to take the kids to school and came back and bullshitted some more.

irc is thoughtless. you don't really have to think to be involved. you just have to type and have natural wit or something. if that, even.

but the morning to myself was nice... something i really hadn't done in a long time. and it beat laying around the couch and trying to figure out why todd isn't speaking to me.

December 10, 1998


it wasn't a notion that started this whole thing, and it's not going to be a notion that finishes it either. it's something i can't avoid, something i can't deny, or push aside, or pretend isn't there.

it's a part of me. it's inside of me.

i always tend to hate the part where i analyze it to pieces, too. we even get into arguments sometimes over who said what, what was meant by something that was said, why something was said the way it was.

heh. arguments! can you believe that?

as it turns out, being blunt is a really direct approach to getting beyond the things that are bothersome. i just have a really hard time believing that i'm that transparent, that my weaknesses are laid out on the table and have already been examined one by one. i have a hard time accepting the fact that i am acceptable, too.

someone pinch me, i'm dreaming. i must be.

it's amazing how i've lived my life without knowing all the things i suddenly know now. amazing that i ever felt whole, or fulfilled, or sated. it's amazing how i thought i knew a lot about everything, but instead knew much about nothing.

you know, this encourages me for the future. it really does. if i'm learning and experiencing this much now, imagine the future and what's out there for me to experience.

i'm just so happy about it all. so optimistic. for the first time in forever, i'm focusing on my wants and needs and not on the wants and needs of others.

you just have to learn to let go sometimes, he told me. and though i heard the words and believed them to be true, i never could bring myself to do just that. let go. relax. enjoy.

it's not mechanical. or methodical. it's so much more than that.... it really is. and now, finally, i know that.

i'm 31, and i just started living.

December 07, 1998


location: home
mood: even
status: just ate dinner, need to clean living room.

tonight is the annual "get off your ass and clean things up" night. i've been procrastinating again, and i'm a bit sick of the notion that i must clean so i can set things up that i'll have to clean in a month.

weird. just thinking about that felt funny. a lot of things feel funny lately, but i'm either too tired or too agnostic to do anything about them.

meetings today, lots of them. and some general conversation with jonathan about life and meaning and figuring out what you want. i didn't realize that my path is cut so neatly until i saw him struggling to find the light.

i feel much the bitch lately, but i guess that goes with the territory. i called an attorney today who wanted to charge me $225 for the initial consultation just to go over what i can expect through this wonderful separation process. i'd rather milk cows or something, you know. blah. i expect already that i won't be going in for the appointment i tentatively set.

i do have a few more names of attorneys to call. i suppose i put that off for various reasons, but one of them the whole deal of having to think about all the details. fucking details, i tell you. it's what life is all about these days.

i get home today and there is a sticky note stuck to my monitor that says that bellsouth finally called regarding my ADSL installation. sorta amazes me that it took them 7 months to get to me. yes, i signed up for this mess in may. MAY!

but oh well. too little too late, i'll just have to sign up for it again when i get a new place to live. that'll probably be a ways off, to be sure. in the meantime, i guess i'll be rooming with mom.

life changes quickly. is that just me?

what i fear is that it's going to get worse. which i'm sure it will. todd's in overdrive, i'm in panic mode. we try to get along, and succeed, most of the time, but most of the time i sit around feeling guilty about wanting things in my life and have my defenses way up. and then todd is all nice, and i feel bad for not wanting the things that i've been saying i did.

i m ean i do. i love my kids....that's not changing. i just don't want to be married. for 12 years i've known this... and tried really hard to make this thing work. we've been through hell together. and i do love him. i just don't want this.

not anymore.

so yeah, there is some guilt and there is some fear, too. of the unknown. of life itself... of making choices that turn out badly. i just want the things i want when i want them.

argh. now doesn't that sound bitchy? i know, it does. but hey, i can't help that anymore.

so life will go on. and i want it to. it's just on super-slow motion now in some regards, and in fast forward in others.

and i'm supposed to be sane. ha!


if it weren't for the friends in my life who actually gave a shit about me, i'd have no friends at all. sometimes they save me when i'm drowning, other times they just throw me a life preserver when they see me beginning to sink.

at any rate, i'm glad people actually care. because, you know, as it goes, i have no fucking clue what i'm doing most of the time.

nancy and i talked for quite awhile last night, and she was pointing out some things to me that i'm doing wrong. she says i should have told todd i wanted out and then moved immediately. she says i shouldn't try to be so nice and easygoing through this all. "you'll soon enough know why i say this," she told me.

i suppose she's right, but dammit... being a bitch doesn't come easy for me most of the time. and besides that, it's hard enough knowing that i'm hurting someone i deeply care about and love. i don't know when to stop feeling guilt over my decision... or whether i should even start.

i need a good book, a good psychiatrist, a good lawyer, or all of the above.

no, i haven't YET contacted an attorney. i've got a name now... so i have a good clue where to start. and though todd and i wanted to handle this whole separation stuff without bringing a lawyer into it, it's pretty much inevitable since we have kids.

and maybe i should go ahead and move to mom's... maybe i should just stop it with the old and start with the new and not wait for the holidays to pass. i mean, this stuff is hard... hell, it's excrutiatingly painful.

i just dunno sometimes though. i hate seeing todd upset. i hate hurting him. i hate not being in control of my emotions.

and i'm none of that lately. i'm just a basketcase.

and then there's being ok with decisions i've made. i'm running in circles now, either because of not really being out of the situation i'm in, or because i'm living in fear of accepting the choices i've already made.

todd says he understands. i'm not totally sure he does, but i'm sure that he will, eventually. i just hope he doesn't hate me at the end of it. but i can't focus on that too much.

and what is it with this warm weather we're having here in north carolina and christmas being less than three weeks away? you know. what the hell is up with that? i'm not even in the christmas spirit. i've purchased no gifts yet. we have no christmas decorations. i don't much care about christmas, or the new year, or much else.

i quit, but now i'm reconsidering because there might be some type of source code release.

i feel so fucking wishy washy. i probably am. and that's ok too.

things are changing. nothing is normal, except change.

and i need to get my shit together. i'm dragging my feet. wanting to help everyone i've hurt, wanting so desperately to cling to something familiar.

space. time. freedom. all of these things are going to help me achieve the
balance i'm so desperately seeking.

and i shouldn't feel bad for any decisions i'm making. not in regard to
todd, not in regard to the kids, not in regard to myself. i'm empowered now..
and i know what's best for me and the kids... i really do. i don't have to
explain myself to every passer-by. i really don't, so dammit i'm going to
make a point of not explaining anything when people look all confused at

i really wish people would just stop asking me sometimes how my weekend was. or how i'm doing. i'm not fine... really. i'm having a shitty time of it lately. tori doesn't even calm me like she used to... even though i am giving her all the chances in the world to do so (i go nowhere without her). but god, the old standard of "how are things?" is just such bullshit, you know?

think about whether you really care how people are before you ask.

sometimes people fake it just for the sake of faking it, you know. but in the long run, the truth surfaces, ugly as it may be. and when people discover that you are incapable of letting yourself go in that way, they take it personally, even when you've told them it's not them, it's you.

so i guess it's normal to feel lost. and to feel like no one really understands. because when it comes right down to it, no one can ever really know all the inner workings of your mind.. you know? i shouldn't have allowed myself to slip into that depressed mode saturday night when i was driving home from wilson after spending a whole day burning tori bootleg cds, watching tori videos and generally
obsessing over her.

because even though i may be depressed on the surface, or even somewhat below it, i'm generally ok... because i know... i KNOW... that i'm making good choices now.

i just hate it that i have to wade through more shit and more pain before the good stuff begins to happen.

fucking hell, as tori said this past spring. fucking hell.

December 05, 1998


sometimes tori says it all

give me peace, love...

and a hard cock..


(how can you NOT dig tori?)


yeah so, i quit doing the webmaster stint at it was a really cool deal at first... i was more than happy to help mark out with his kickass little program.

but then he just stopped working on it and stopped caring or something. and everyone pushed for more. which probably made him regress more.

personally, i think it was ultima online that sucked him in. but who really cares? the point is he stopped giving a damn.

so why did i waste more than a year updating scripts and making sure that links were correct and in working order? and why did i ever think he would come back to it?

i guess i was optimistic. or that maybe i really enjoyed working with him on it and didn't want the experience to end.

but it did. a long long time ago.

so i finally just let go. thanked him for the memory and i'm moving on.

(to what, i don't know. but that's not the point.)

yeah, he made me stupid.


December 04, 1998



my teeth fucking hurt.

my head hurts.

my eyes hurt.

i'm tired of thinking.

why can't life just be easy?

and why can't i just have my way? i'm going to have it, you know.

i burp beer, but i had less than one and the pizza came after the beer anyway and i don't burp that.

i expressed my emotions today. slow down. hold on.

i looked at an apartment today. i cried a little afterward. i didn't tell anyone.

i sit alone in the dark because the lights are too bright and hurt my eyes and besides the darkness comforts me still.

i thought about mark today. i thought about the things i felt when i used to talk to him and i wondered why i ever felt them. life is so much more complex than that.

i've fooled myself into thinking that i'm ready to live. sometimes i think i'm regressing back into childhood and just want someone to tell me that everything is going to be okay.

a friend told me today that i was a beautiful person and that i would be okay and that all this pain is going to pass. and then i cried because it felt so nice to actually hear those words from someone who i once knew so well and i didn't think knew me anymore. but he did. and does. and on saturday, i'm going to see him and we're gonna listen to tori and read comic books and talk trash about people we don't like. and i'm looking forward to it.

my teeth still hurt. goddamned sinuses.

my actions are sometimes deemed highly inappropriate. and i think that's half the thrill.

my eyes hurt. a lot. they are heavy. i should be sleeping but my head was hurting so bad that i couldn't.

it's 12:47 a.m. and i haven't hugged my children today.


December 03, 1998


thirty-two years ago on this day, i was conceived. i know this only because i've heard the story a million times about how my father took advantage of my mother the night of my grandfather's 50th birthday party when she was drunk off cold duck.

so yes. it's true.

di is a cold duck baby.

i suppose this explains quite a few things, eh?

December 01, 1998


resorting to my own defenses

i was describing my current state of mind the other day to todd, and i told him there i was, standing on the inside of this huge wall that surrounds me. i said i fought whenever anyone got near the wall, and i fought with a full army.

that's what's been going on with me lately. i'm struggling to just be me and be okay with that. i'm struggling with a lot of doubts i have in my mind about what i want and where i want to go. this stuff is just happening and i haven't been able to express my emotions worth a damn until just recently.

last night i exploded.

i don't like the way i was acting, but i didn't know how else to express all the crap i was feeling inside. there's this big anxiety to live and enjoy myself even though i know it's what i want. i'm fearful of my future because for the first time in awhile, i'm uncertain of what direction i'm moving.

i realized that i cage a lot of my feelings, just as i always have, and keep them bottled up. i've got to stop doing this... it's not healthy for me and it's not healthy the way i handle things when i explode either.

i want to just want the things i want and everyone understand. i want to just live my life in peace, without having to explain every movement or decision i make.

i want understanding.

i want love.

i want my independence, and i'll fight for it tooth and nail.

don't tell me what to do. don't pass judgment on my decisions. just accept me for who i am.

and if you can't, it's just like you climbing that wall and wanting to get inside me. i won't let you in.

the compromise i'm making with myself is not to be so hard on other people. open up more, accept who i am more.

all these changes... all of them so fast... i sometimes catch myself reeling out of control.

last night, that happened.

today, i'm trying to forgive my imperfections and keep pushing toward the things i want.

nothing can stop me now.

November 30, 1998


the moments come and go so damned quickly in my life. so quickly.

i'm SO DAMNED MAD right now that i can't even see straight, and it's all about stupid shit. like about how todd can be in a good mood one minute, and hating me the next. and how i still feel that i have to walk around this house feeling like an outsider. like i have to fucking pay a damned toll just to have my damned life back.

it's like a fucking play, is what it is. i'm playing the role of mother and wife, to an extent. did i do this right? was your dinner ok? what can i fucking possibly do now to make your life easier and everyone's life easier .... sacrifice my own? well sure, no problem.

and you know, they've all come to expect that shit from me. and i'm fucking pissed about it.

i'm pissed because assumptions are now being made about me and the person that i am.... fuck... not assumptions...damned judgments.


to everyone and anyone who knows todd and knows me and thinks they can get off by reading this shit... mind your own fucking business. the web is the ONLY place where i can be myself. i shouldn't feel like i have to change who i am or anything i say because of who reads this. THIS IS MY FUCKING LIFE. my fucking life. and i'm mad and angry and that no one seems to give a shit about that.

HELL. get your own fucking space and say what you want to say.

the damned government hasn't seized control of this yet.

and yeah, i have fucking friends who i talk to and confide in and that's my fucking business too.

GRRRRR. i'm just so fucking mad.

so damned mad i can't even tell you.

it's not about anything in particular, yet it's about everything. i don't like this shit.... everyone assumes it's so fucking easy for me to go through thiis shit because i'm the one who started it all. well, let me just tell you that it's not fucking easy. i deal with this shit every day.... every fucking day.... trying to make fucking decisions about my life and the type of person i want to be... the type of person i've always WANTED to be but felt that i couldn't because of someone else making their opinion known.

well, fuck you all. FUCK EVERYONE. and i'm talking to no one in particular. i'm so damned mad about my life right now. so mad about how i let it go to hell so many years ago. and mad at myself for not speaking up for it before.

it's a really easy thing for some people.... you know, to do what makes them happy. but for me, it's not. it never has been. there has been a price to pay every step of the fucking way.

and i'm mad and pissed about that too.

i just want to get a bat and beat the fuck out of a tree or something. just deal with this anger and this hostility and let it all out for once.

and instead, i get people telling me how i'm being disrespectful to their feelings and shit. wwell you know what? fuck that too. i can't and won't continue to be the silent person i have been all these damn years. i won't be taken advantage of and i don't much give a fuck if this bothers you or not.

this is me. diane. fucking me. this is who i am and will be until you stupid monkeys get off my fucking back.

so keep your tight-assed networks going and your secrets to your fucking self.

i'm getting a fucking lawyer.

November 29, 1998


the music has come, and it's in the form of anything loud.

"i believe in peace.....i believe in peace bitch..." is what is reverberating against the walls in this office of mine. doors are open and todd is outside smoking a cigarette.

i would join him, but then he might not appreciate that.

things are hot and cold a lot lately, less warm... less gray. and i think that's probably a good thing. the less gray the better when one is trying to make a decision.

casey is outside riding her bike with the boy from the house next door. suburbia has woken up and is preparing to go to church.

not this house. casey would probably like to go, but i neither have the desire nor the inclination to dress up and go have jesus shoved down my throat for an hour. bible belt this is, but a conforming southern baptist i am not.

i don't think people realize how much of a deal is made about church when you grow up in the south. we are a mass of stereotypicalism. is that a word? if it is, that's what we all are. a mass together. but individually, some of us aren't stereotypical at all.

and that's ok. i'm just figuring out that i'm not going to die if i don't please 100% of the people 100% of the time. i don't know where i got the notion that i had to.

so last night i drank two killian's reds and smoked a few cigarettes and had a rather pleasant conversation with my husband once he returned home from florida.

we ended up waking up the kids so casey could cut her birthday cake with her dad in the same room. she was really happy to wake up to more presents and cake and ice cream. i videotaped her blowing out her candles... i'll have to see if i can get a shot of that.

speaking of candles, i've become obsessive lately about wanting to keep candles lit everywhere. they make me feel good, the house smells of the scent du jour and it creates a nice dark ambient mood for me.

sometimes, though, the dark is better. dark office, loud music, shades pulled so the neighbors can't see me banging my head around acting like a total idiot.

"mom! please turn the music down... i can't hear my movie!" casey screamed at me when she opened the door to my office last night.

i turned it down a little, not enough to satisfy her and not enough to dissatisfy myself. pearl jam... vitalogy... some of that is just good rockin' music. some of it. and then you hit track 5 or track 11 and listen to eddie's ballads about life.

i followed pearl jam with sublime, i think it was. whatever was on was loud.. and sounded good. i wonder why that is. why loud sounds better. anyone know?


and so she sings another song to me...this is cooling, faster than i can...

November 28, 1998


a day of things

i'm randomly thinking about things and adding them here today.

i noticed that the Toriphile Registry has been updated and that i've finally been added.

i want to write something for bittersweets, but there's just too much to choose from.

dave and i have been catching up quite a bit lately. and yes, that is a good thing, because he makes me realize how stupid everyone is, including me.

and todd...the other one... well, he's going to heaven. i'm certain of it, because he's been nothing but a saviour to me lately. i don't know what i'd do without him.


and my daughter casey turned eight years old today. she got a new bike, a lot of spice girls stuff, a watch, a necklace and a lot of attention. and tonight we'll cut her cake and sing her happy birthday.


and me? well... heh... i bought a brand new bottle of st. john's wort and a new toe ring. both were purchases toward my mental health, though i can't explain how either works.

thanks, everyone, for all the wonderful email. as always, every word is much appreciated.

November 26, 1998


thanksgiving day

everything in life is full of bittersweetness now. a hug from my daughter or son feels so good, yet makes me feel so bad. to speak my mind to my husband after all these years feels wonderful, yet at the same time it brings me such pain and anguish.

i never knew there would be such a high price to pay for my own happiness. i never knew that by not saying what i should have said 12 years ago that i would end up having to fight for the things that i wanted in life.

apparently, that's the way it will be for me. nothing has ever come easy, even a slice of the pie that everyone else seems to be enjoying.

i called todd this morning. he's in florida at his sister's house. i wanted to let him know that despite what he had said in the phone conversation last night about me not caring that he had made it safely, that i did care and do care and that none of this is easy. i do love him, you see. how can he possibly think that i don't? i've built a life with him, even if it's not the healthiest of lives for me. i care about him and want to protect him from all this hurt that i'm causing.

it's just such an impossible situation.

this whole deal of me being the one to leave and leaving the kids behind... well, i just don't know if i'm coping with that at all. i cry a lot when i think about it. i cry when one of the kids says something sweet to me, or when they fight even, because i realize that all these little moments are the things i'll be missing.

i've been trying to imagine worst case scenario to see if i could deal with it. a dark, quiet apartment... me in it, alone, no one there to care or to see me cry.... this is what it could be if i'm not ok with the decision.

i just don't know. i've often wished for someone to make the right decision for me and just tell me what to do. but it doesn't work that way, and i know it doesn't. i just want to crawl under a rock and come out when everything is ok again.

so i guess today i'm thankful for a lot of things that i haven't considered in a long time. i'm thankful for todd being such a good dad to my kids. even though he has his faults (we all do), he loves them and cares about them. i'm thankful for my children being the individuals they are. i am thankful that they argue and fight and talk back to me and then give me hugs when they see that i need it. they are so normal, so perfect in every way, even if they don't always hear that from me. today i'll tell them, because i'm truly thankful for them being in my life. i'm thankful for this house, this place that has become ours in the few short months that we've lived here. i'm thankful for the new stains we've put on the carpets, or for how the kids' bedrooms stay messy even after we've told them to clean up.

and i'm thankful that i was finally able to muster up the strength to tell todd that something deep within me longs for something more and for him to finally understand that. it's painful... probably as much so as it is joyful in that i finally unburdened my soul.

bittersweet. i look and see all this stuff, and somehow can't be filled inside by it because i've hollowed myself out over the years and haven't learned to love myself fully or those around me.

so maybe in time it will start being less bittersweet and will become one of those things that i can learn to accept about myself. that i've failed as a wife and a mother in a number of ways. it doesn't mean i'm a horrible person, and i need to realize that too. and it doesn't stop me from trying to be a better role model for my kids. i know they need me, and i want to be there for them. i want them to know that it was for them that i wanted to become a better person. a more stable person.

todd called back after we hung up this morning, and asked if i would consider driving to florida... told me that i was more than welcome to join him. i hesitated, not really sure of what to do. the thought of feeling safe and secure in his arms sounded nice, but then i knew that doing that would give him false hope and wouldn't allow me to learn to stand on my own. i told him i would think about it, but after hanging up the phone, i knew i couldn't go.

all this unfamiliarity around me... all this uncertainty.... this is what i have to work with now to turn my life into something that i can be proud of. that i can be honest about. that my kids and maybe even todd can appreciate.

i've come a long way, but parts of me are still lingering back in my formative years and trying to figure out what went so wrong. why i couldn't just be honest about what i wanted back then, why i couldn't stand up for myself and defend my own honor. and why i clung to the false belief that if i just didn't tell anyone how i was feeling that the pain would disappear and i'd be ok.

so yeah... happy thanksgiving. i'm truly thankful for a lot these days, even if the feeling that follows that thankfulness is bittersweet in nature.

November 25, 1998


catching up with dave

me: "i don't like people to cling on me...except, of course, when i want them to."

him: "i have to have space. to be left alone. too much shit makes me shiver and need to get away."

me: "exactly."


i discuss life a lot lately. too much, in fact. sometimes you just have to stop talking about it and just live it. it's that time.

i've been making all sorts of decisions lately. good ones, bad ones,
ones that i'm not even sure about. it's incredibly overwhelming to
sit around and analyze every thought, every mood, every movement. life
wasn't meant to be lived under a microscope.

so i take this thing one day at a time. slowly. very slowly.

but not too much. you've got to move, you know.


so the thing now is that i may move out and leave todd with the kids. it's something we're discussing, something that has changed the entire
situation totally, and something i am not sure i can live with. my whole deal is not wanting to cause anyone any pain, but that's like asking for perfection in a situation that dictates otherwise. i can't expect that.

so my expectation is just to have the smoothest transition possible for my children. to have them feel loved and cared for while what's normal to them changes.

it's so heart wrenching to realize that you can't protect your kids from life.


dave and i caught up this week, which was right on time. it is so nice to kick back with an old friend and just be myself.


and thanks everyone for all the super-generous email. i admit i was seeking cheap sympathy, but what i got was a lot of people who actually seem to care a little about me and understand the situation.

interactive media, baby. it's intense.



people often ask me why i share my life like this. why do i do it? how can i do it?

and you know, it's not something i've ever really thought about. i do it because it feels right for me to do it. i like people. i like talking. i enjoy living my life.

why do you like to sing along with music? ever wondered why?

see, it's the same thing for me about the writing.

i never expected anyone to understand. it wasn't something i felt like i had to explain.


on that note...

in regard to todd and his wishes for me not to publicly display his life, i'm really trying to honor that. and i've been waiting for ben to hook me up with the new mailing list info... but i'm not sure he even got the request.

so in the meantime, do me a favor... and if you want to join, just send me your email address and somewhere in the letter let me know you want to subscribe to "then". and i'll set up a small mailing list myself somehow. for the time being.

sign up!


and happy thanksgiving everyone! (or at least everyone who celebrates it)

i'm spending mine in durham with my kids and my mother and stepfather. we're smoking a turkey on the grill. mom will make the usual fare, and there will be a lot of conversation about my life. blah.

and i'll probably have to do some dishes.

November 22, 1998


and another fucking thing....

you know, i'm sick and tired of being the easygoing doormat type who always considers everyone else's feelings first. i fucking HATE IT. i hate that aspect of my personality, because if it weren't for that i wouldn't be where i am now.

it also doesn't help that i started my fucking period yesterday and am having to figure out all the goddamned financial aspects of my whole fucking life this afternoon. is it so wrong of me to FUCKING NEED SOMEONE to vent to and to have them there just to listen? i don't expect to have the answers handed to me. i just want someone to hear me and to fucking understand for once.

i see fucking patterns already that i hate. i fucking hate them. and i feel even worse when i finally express my discontent with how things are working in regard to it all and then feel like a bitch afterward for saying so.

don't fucking apologize to me or promise me that you can fucking be there if you can't. it's really easy to say you can and then not to be. what's harder is following through. and you know, i'll be there when i say i'll be there. i've been known to move mountains for the people i love.

but i'm selfish, and thing is... i HAVE TO BE. i have two fucking kids who depend on me, a damned mortgage to take care of and now it's like i can't even bitch about it when the time comes without having to make sure i'm not hurting someone else.

fuck that.

and what's worse is that i have to constantly go around apologizing for saying this or that or the other wrong thing at the wrong time and not being able just to speak what is on my mind without fear of stepping on someone else's toes.

teresa said pull strength from within. depend on yourself. give it at least six months and then you'll be stronger and less needy and things will work out better.

and she is right. she's fucking right. and i knew she was when she said it, but that caring, easygoing part of me who is already in love with the idea of being free and happy didn't want to listen. and still doesn't, despite the fact that i should.

and if this hurts feelings, i can't help that anymore. i can't help feeling what i feel and being hurt when i feel hurt. i just can't continually go around being sorry for everything that i am.

i'm needy. i need understanding. and time, god i need time just to be whatever or whomever i want.

it's not like i'm that great of a prize anyway. not at this point.

so feel free to walk or to run screaming in the other direction. i don't blame you a bit. i hate me, too and i'm probably not even worth the effort to stick around.


i have this horrible habit of pouring myself a drink, the non-alcoholic kind, and letting all the ice melt so that my drink is ultimately watered down to the point i refuse to drink it.

it's like taking money and just throwing it away, or so i've been told. to me it's just one of those things i do unconsciously, much like chewing on pen tops and straws and just about everything else i can grind between my teeth.

but don't get the wrong idea here.

i'm a fucking strange person, i've come to realize. i used to bask in the glory of being the odd person out, but these days i feel like the spotlight is on my weirdness and i've got nothing to say about it.

my brain is all over the place, as are my emotions, and just expressing myself to the point where i feel like i've let something significant out has become a chore. i feel all sorts of stuff now, whereas a couple of days ago i was feeling nothing at all.

i have a deep respect for my husband and what he must be going through. i feel guilty as hell about it, but at the same time i know i'm pushing something that will ultimately be best for us both. it's so damn hard trying not to be the bitch all the time. and it's really hard when no one is mad at me for ripping up lives and changing all the rules.

sometimes i feel if he could just hate me, i'd be better off. i can deal with that... i know how to effectively deal with strong hostility (i'm used to it). what i can't deal with is understanding and love and respect for my feelings. i don't understand the whole concept of that at all. but i'm learning. i'm being told constantly that it's ok to feel what i'm feeling and under no circumstances should i feel sorry about it.

so i don't. i feel good about finally expressing myself.

but the old saying my mother used to tell me is coming back to haunt me: "be careful of what you ask for, you might just get it."

so the whole thing is to think about it before you ask.

and the thing about that is that you have to make the decision about what to ask for on your own.

so you can see how all of this is coming together nicely and sucking really bad. i'm scared. fearful. facing my demons. pushing forward, looking back, looking around, trying to relax and to just let it all out.

i told my mother today. i had a big fear that i'd be spending the thanksgiving holiday alone so i called and successfully got my mother to invite me over. you see, our traditions haven't been traditional lately. but maybe i needed just a little bit of that, you know, just to feel like the whole world hasn't changed, but rather just the part that revolves around me.

we all have our own little weird worlds. in mine, drinks are cheaper and come in smaller quantities and the bar of soap is a bit bigger.

in case you were wondering, that is.

i'm trying.

November 20, 1998


the good fight

things are looking better. not bad, not good, but just better. and after talking to todd about everything this week and deciding that we could handle this like adults, that's exactly what we're going to do.

but he did mention to me that he feels weird about having his personal life displayed all over the web. i contested that it's more my personal life than his that i'm writing about here, but on second thought i saw his point. it's not fair of me to talk about him without his consent. at least not about our marriage and its demise.

so i'm hoping to create a new mailing list... or rather, turning the old mailing list into the new one and having new people sign up if they really want to know the details. the list itself will be called 'then' (as opposed to 'now') and will contain all the tidbits i won't be writing about for the world to see in this spot.

thing is, i don't know how long it will take to get that set up or when it will actually be working. so stay tuned.

in the meantime, i'll be doing random things, like losing my mind. enjoy it while you can. i'm actually having fun with it.


November 18, 1998


i'm not really sure what i'm feeling anymore. last night i went from emotion-filled to emotionless in a matter of minutes. it was as if the inside of me had been ripped open and everything there was finally seen for what it's worth.

there is a division, now. the old me, the new me. the happy me, the frightened me. what i considered normal yesterday isn't normal today. my whole life has been shaken, not stirred. and i did it.

so for anyone who doesn't know what's going on yet, i told my husband last night that i didn't want to be married any- more. i told him i wasn't sure why this was, but was a gut feeling i've had since soon after we got married more than 12 years ago. it's not that i don't love him, because i do. how can a person not love someone they've grown up with and shared a life with for so long? it's just so much more than that. it's about loving me, accepting myself for who i am and what i really want. it's about recognizing the feelings i've kept buried for 12 years because i was too scared to admit how i felt.

so yeah, i feel good. i feel better just because i know i've been honest now. but at the same time, i don't feel good. i don't like the way it feels to hurt someone else, to cause them continual anguish and grief. i don't like becoming a statistic... i almost used to take pride in the fact that despite all the odds, we were making our marriage work. hell, i could have continued down that path and never have fessed up to how i was feeling.

and that's so weird. because i didn't. i always do, but this time i didn't and actually said what i wanted to say.

he says he never wants to speak to me again, but i'm sure that he probably will. we do have the kids to talk about and his plans to discuss. he says he hates himself now for ever allowing himself to get into this situation. and i hate that he feels that way. it wasn't like i intended on doing this all along. there were times when i wanted it to work, despite the gut feeling i had that it wasn't going to.

but he doesn't care what i think or feel anymore. and just as well. it's time i stop focusing so much on what he's doing and focus on me. become even more selfish and introspective and really sort out the shit that is my life.

i'm waiting patiently for normal to feel normal again, and for all the unfamiliar territory to become common ground.

i'm waiting for me to say the next thing that i'm feeling, and say it with a certainty that i only answer to myself and my kids and can therefore make decisions.

i'm waiting for me to push away from all the free advice that will certainly be handed out to me and only listen to what i know will work for me and the kids.

and so i want quiet today. headphones, lots of web stuff to do... and just to be alone with myself. i feel that part happening rather quickly.

it's not that i mean to close myself off from people... it's just that i'm learning only to trust and depend on myself for certain things, and a relaxed state of mind happens to be on that list today.

so happy wednesday to me. today is the first day of the rest of my life.

November 17, 1998


i said it.

i don't want to be married anymore, i told him.

he said he already knew.

he said i hurt him like hell.

i said i already knew that.

but it was a choice, you know. a choice between hurting him now or hurting myself more by not telling him.

so i told him.

and suddenly, the pivotal point that i had been trying to reach for a long time had come and gone, and i wasn't feeling a thing.

numb? perhaps.

it's just that i feel no emotion now.


as if the past never happened and i didn't bury myself in it.

looking forward, i see more pain. more resentment. more anger about to surface and rear its ugly head.

you want freedom? he asked. well you got it babe. boy, do you have it.

do you hate me now? i asked.

no, i hate myself, he answered. i hate myself for getting into this
shit in the first place.

and finally i saw it... that fine line... between love and hate.

i'm just so glad not to be walking on it like a tightrope anymore.

so yeah.

i said it.

November 15, 1998


trent is back in the cd player. quite a bit lately.

nothing can stop me now, cause i just don't care anymore.
nothing can stop me now
nothing can stop me now
nothing can stop me now
nothing can stop me now
nothing can stop me now
nothing can stop me now
nothing can stop me
mothing can stop me now
nothing can stop me now
nothing can stop me now
nothing can stop me

god i'm just a mixture of too many emotions lately.

we were riding down the street yesterday morning, when i spilled the beans, so to speak, and told todd what was on my mind...

i control you
i control you
i control you

i control you
i control you
i control you

i am the voice inside your head
i am the lover in your bed
i am the sex that you deny
i am the heat you try to hide

i control you
i control you
i control you
i control you
i control you
i control you
i control you
i control you

"it's happening again," was all i could muster.
"what is?" he said.
"my selfishness. it's back."
"i noticed."

we continued to ride down the road. a minute later, he spoke.

"so what's your problem?"
"i don't know. that's what i'm trying to figure out."
"you need to do some soul searching, diane, and you need to do it now."
"i know. i just want you to know none of this is your fault."

i am the voice inside your head
i am the lover in your bed
i am the sex that you deny
i am the heat you try to hide

i take you where you want to go
i give you all you need to know
i drag you down, i use you up
mr. self destruct

you let me do this you
you let me do this to you
you let me do this to you
you let me do this you
you let me do this to you
i am an insect
you let me do this to you
ia m
you let me do this to you
i am an insect

i am the needle in the vein
i am the high you can't sustain

it would be really cool if i could just type this shit that's inside my head out. just like type it. say what's really happening. and i guess i could, but i'm scared, because a lot of what i'm dealing with probably would let a lot of people down and would hurt others and shit if they knew.

so i hide it you know. because you can't just go around talking about things like i've been thinking about. doing. saying. feeling.

it sucks.

dad was really good because he listened and stuff. and it felt right, talking about it all. saying what i was truly feeling inside.

but then it was like out there, on the table... all my emotions.

and then tonight,, seeing him, just fucking seeing him, and i sit there feeling all crappy because i want all this shit i can't have and want things that are probably not good for either of us.

and he says that i should do what's right for me, but what if that means not having him somewhere down the line, you know? what if it means that. and what if i am wearing him down? like to the point he's so tired of this whole thing that even thinking about it causes him pain and he runs from me like i keep expecting him to.

point is i probalby don't trust love, because i trusted it once and it wasn't really what i thought it was going to be.

and you know what else? i don't fucking feel like sitting here typing this shit. i'll probably delete it fairly quickly now that i've actually said it. typed it. FELT IT.

it's all driving me nuts.

do you know that i'm perfectly content just sitting there and looking at him. how pathetic is that? i could just look at him and be happy. my life is so fucking pathetic that i can't even have a coherent thought these days without gushing over the way i'm feeling inside when i get near him.

and i KNOW. it sucks. it's not about him. it's not supposed to be about him. but how do you go around separating that from the real shit in life when what you're feeling is the real shit...the way it's supposed to be... the way i've never had it.

it's not that i don't love my husband. i love him dearly. but he's never moved mountains for me emotinoally. there's always beent his fucking void in my heart that sometimes cries out for love and attention and everything. and i suppose it was crying or something because he heard it and there he was and before i knew it he had heard it.

and that's bad. to wear your heart on your sleeve like that where everyone can hear everything you're fucking feeling inside just because it's so damn wonderful that you just have to scream and let it out.

and maybe it's all too soon. maybe the whole deal is in just knowing that there can be more. there can be a fullness that i always wondered about. hell, i didn't know what normal was. i still don't. and i'm scared that maybe now i can't even offer that because what's normal and real really isn't normal to me.

i don't trust love. heh. that's so fucking hard to believe.

and do you know that i have the music turned up so loud ... i like it loud and blasting and screaming all the shit about self-loathing and self-destruction because it feels so fucking good. i can handle the pain, i just can't handle the happiness aspect. it's fucking overwhelming.

and that's backwards as hell. i'm backwards as hell. my whole life is so totally fucked and now i've screwed up by not knowing and having my head stuck in the mud all these years.

dammit. when i thought i was doing stuff that would never hurt me, it hurt me dearly. and i'm just realizing it now and it really bothers me that i could have fucked my life over so totally. it really does.

and you know, i don't think i'm going to go back and change any of the damn errors on this page, because fuck, i just don't feel like it. welcome to my stream of consciousness, unedited.

and i'm not really sure about anything anymore. i'm spinning, listening, hoping to hear the sounds of the sweet voices that sometimes surround me. and i listen, and hear myself sometimes, and i think that's what scares me. that's exactly what scares me. i see me.

so yeah. turn up the music, type so hard and so fast til all the words just come spilling out of me and into text and it doesn't really matter because the music is so loud that i can't even hear myself type.

i need something. i need to learn patience.

patience is a virtue

i need the warm fuzzies and the constant stroking and to feel utterly special.

and if i could just get of fmy ass, look in the mirror and be perfectly content with the person looking back at me, i'd be better.

and i'd probably smoke less.

and he doesn't realize just how sorry i am for being the way that i am. and that's what truly sucks. i know the faults, the weaknesses... they aren't hard to spot. it's just learning not to focus on those and focus on the other shit ....

i hurt myself today to see if i still feel
i focus on the pain, the only thing that's real

and i'm going to be normal again. normal will be redefined, because i like the new modern definition of it anyway. just like whatever it says in one of those unabridged dictionaries that my little cousin used to sit on during thanksgiving dinner so he could see above the table.

what have i become, my sweetest friend
everyone i know goes away in the end
and you could have it all
my empire of dirt
i will let you down
i will make you hurt

you know what really scares me most? i'm usually right about things. about my fears. they all come true.

i am just trying not to let them do that anymore.

but i guess i do. maybe that's what he saw.

perhaps he's doing this for both of us.

you had to give them all a sign... didn't you?

November 13, 1998


kelly called, wanted to know if i wanted to go to the cat's cradle in chapel hill with her and her ex-husband who is soon to be her husband again. it was a voice mail, so i didn't respond yet. but i will sometime today. i'll be telling her no.

i would go. but then i've been going and going all week, and besides the only reason i called her earlier this week was because i was freaking out and needed to talk to someone who had been there, done that.

but thursday was too long to wait, and we didn't even have a chance to go out anyway. and now, well... now.... i've planned to see dad.

i should call her back, decline and suggest another time.

kelly is cool.

11:27 a.m.

i quit smoking last friday.

i started back today. or last night rather.

the eternal buzz got to me and i needed relief.


so i was talking to last night on icq, discussing whether he should use josh or joshua when referring to himself.

"joshua," i told him. "it implies sexuality. josh doesn't."

"no," he corrected me a moment later. "joshua implies jesus christ."

i guess that wouldn't be a good thing for him, then. he's 18 and full of hormones.

November 11, 1998


this guy i work with once showed me this email he was sending to a friend of his whom he was giving advice to about a girl. the guy was having a hard time making a decision about what to do, and apparently kept dragging his feet on the whole issue.

"if she's not worth leaving your comfort zone for, don't even waste your time," my friend wrote to him. "that should be the standard rule in life. if it's not worth taking risks to reach the desired goal, it's not really worth having."

so i've been thinking about that a lot. i feel on display and lost in myself at the same time. i'm sorry for not being able to put what is going on in my life in plain english. it's hard.

do you know what it's like when everything isn't familiar? like when you've had so many changes and created so much 'new' for yourself that it overwhelms you because it's out of your comfort zone?

i do.

today i just feel like crying almost. i want to see my father. i want to just feel something familiar and comforting. i want to NOT have this fear.

and that's what it all is. it's fear. fear of change, of messing up, of losing people that are important to me. fear of hurting people i don't want to hurt.

and so part of me is banging and screaming around inside, yelling, "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!" to all of this stuff, while another part of me is open to it and welcomes the opportunity to grow.

i may be 31 and a married mother of two who has a simple little life that is all perfect on the outside looking in. but once you get to know me, once you know all the shitty little secrets that i keep so buried within me... the gloss begins to fade into a dull coating.

people, i'm not a healthy person. i'm not mentally able to be my own person... and i so desperately want and need that. and i can't do it alone, or at least don't feel like i can... but i NEED to..

and you know what? my dad just called and i'm going to see him this weekend. thank gosh.

sunshine is peeking out from behind the clouds. :)

November 10, 1998


a redesign effort is underway.

yes, again.

things have changed, i am changing, redesign is inevitable.

i know i'm not saying a whole lot. i mean, i really am, in essence. but overall, i've been faily subdued this week. sunday was a day that battered me emotionally... in good ways, in some not so good ways.

it's just time again for me to get out the microscope and examine some things. time for me to call that psychologist and get some good solid advice or feedback on what's right and wrong for me. i don't want to make decisions that will hurt me somewhere down the road.

and yeah, this has everything and nothing to do with my husband. it's about me, my life... how i lost it at a young age, bought into a deceptiveness that now envelopes me.

i just want to dig my way out.

and i will. i'm certain of that. getting there is only half the battle, though. maintaining some semblance of life in the process is another, as is keeping my sanity intact.

and you know, things aren't always what they seem. deep down, what you've found here is a little girl trying desperately to learn and walk on her own. i'll fall down, to be sure. and stumble. and maybe even trip on the way.

but i'm getting closer to the first step.

November 08, 1998


five hours into his trip, her phone rang.

she answered it, suddenly happy to hear his voice and trying desperately to get a grip on her surroundings. she had been sleeping.

she smiled as she talked to him, surrounded by the darkness and the sound of his voice.

thirty minutes later, the conversation was over and she turned over in bed, noticing how she could stretch and move around. alone.

twelve hours later, she checked her messages. none. and for the next two hours, she did the same. repeatedly. finally, she gave up and decided to do other things.

she slept again. dreaming this time.

two hours later, she checked her messages again. ahhh. finally. signs of life. she caught herself smiling as she read each of them, well aware of the effect of his words.

thirty minutes later, they connected, ever so briefly. his words again made her smile, made her miss him, made her wish he was home.

twelve hours later, he tried again, but she wasn't there. so he left another message, asking for her please to just let him know what to do.

she'd let him know soon enough. and then giggled at her own thoughts.

two hours later, she sat quietly, watching the sun come up. she sat back, thinking about how time passes so quickly and so slowly at the same time. she checked her watch.

twelve hours.

she went back to bed.


fighting quietly
with myself
i find that i often
think about the way
life happens
and how i perceive it
to be

an adventure it is,
i've been told
open yourself up to it
enjoy it
let it happen

but still, i fight
taking notions of
weaving them in and
out of my thoughts
wondering what will
happen if i change
yet again

what does this all
mean and why do i care?
i ask myself this
and still haven't found
the answers i seek

so i push
myself away
briefly, trying to
gain objectivity
and reason
before i realize that
i already have it
it is my own

shifting paradigms
isn't easy

November 07, 1998


there's always a good amount of fear associated with writing anything for the world to see. it's hard to imagine your family and coworkers stumbling across your innermost thoughts and fears and having all their illusions about you crumble to pieces.

but then there's that question of how honest you really want to be, how much you really want or need to give of yourself for everyone to see. do you really want to be yourself? totally? or would you rather just offer up a few select tidbits of your mind so people can walk away thinking they understand?

i consider this a lot. i used not to care so much, especially back when i first started writing online. i'd write about anything and anyone, comforted by the size of the web and the odds of meeting someone who had actually stumbled onto my page.

i'm not so naive anymore. i'm guarded, and i should be. i still have the desire to share my life and provide all the juicy details, but i often stop myself from doing so. the therapy is in writing the words anyway, not in publishing them.

i don't need to be judged by thousands of people who don't know the details of my life, but often i am. i can accept criticisms and advice from people as long as they don't forget that they don't have all the details. i even appreciate the caring and comforting that is often provided me by regular readers of this site. truly, it makes it worth continuing.

i just don't know how to make it so i can fuel this desire i've had since birth to share my life and to document its progress. there are so many stories that need to get out, so many truths that need to be revealed and so many obstacles that need to be overcome. and words take me where i need to go. most of the time.

so consider me frustrated. or confused. or both. because while i sit here and write essentially about nothing, my life hangs in the balance as it often does, and i need to write and share it. i need a silent sounding board. i need to let go and let the words overtake me and say what needs to be said.

but this is the web. and i know i don't have the readership that other sites have, but i still feel the need to be conservative to a point.

"the internet is bad," they often say. "all that porn and filth, you just know perverts are hiding around every corner."

i nod, fully understanding their sentiments, but i don't worry much about that because i'm of the impression that a pervert only wants to be a pervert and doesn't have the time nor the inclination to stop and read about my life.

but my family might.

so pardon me while i sit in a state of flux and try and figure out what i'm going to do next. maybe a password protected journal? maybe just write and don't publish? maybe a mailing list for the people who want to know? or maybe i can just continue to write highly contrived entries so that no one really knows what the hell is going on.

now isn't going anywhere. cutting off this lifeline of mine to the outside would be like me taking a razor blade to my wrist. it's that important to me to have an outlet.

but you know . . .

it's awful when you're stuck between being an expressive exhibitionist and a responsible member of society. there really is no middle ground, now is there?

November 06, 1998


when there's lack of sleep, there's lack of clarity.

i didn't sleep last night. i did everything but. my home office has turned into a home pig sty. i got into one of my slinging moods where envelopes, bills and papers went flying everywhere.

the release only lasted for a brief period of time, and then i found myself frustrated again.

so it wasn't the messy desk, or the cds stacked up higher than my desk lamp, or even the tv squawking at me.

i just couldn't make myself do a decent job on this web project for work. there is no passion, no commitment to it, no desire to kill myself on it only to have another coworker chop it apart and tell me i should use drop shadows on everything and a grey textured background.

the thought sickens me.

so i was staring at patterns in the wallpaper in my bathroom

this morning. following the lines up the wall, around the edges, making sure whoever wallpapered did it correctly. as if i know. but the thing is, what else are you going to do when you are just sitting there?

i remember when i was 16 and pregnant. we had this horrid wallpaper in our bathroom at home with the name 'oleg cassini' printed diagonally across it. i hated it, and now that i think about it i really had no point in mentioning it other than to say that i threw up in that bathroom when i was pregnant and for some reason that wallpaper sticks in my mind.

random memories, you know. or sleep deprivation.

and the fan above me is wobbling. which scares me. because we installed that fan, and it shouldn't wobble.

i suppose that would probably hurt if it fell.

November 04, 1998


i have cough due to cold.

my head doesn't hurt nearly as much as my chest does when i cough, which makes me wonder how all that phlegm built up there in the first place. was i not paying attention? i don't remember having a cold.

i woke up yesterday morning with a dry, scratchy throat. i figured i probably had slept with my mouth open or something due to an inability to breathe otherwise. i could tell right away that it hurt, but i was hoping that it would just go away as the day wore on.

to no avail. i had coughing fits off and on all day long, during which i could hear the crap in my chest trying to loosen up and move around. blech. it sucks to have phlegm. it's probably one of the body's most unattractive things to generate, ranking up there with toejam or something.

but anyway.

i slept like a baby last night, nearly falling asleep as i sat here and talked to jonathan on icq. the alka-seltzer liquid geltabs that i took kicked in full-force, rendering me nearly unconscious as i made my way through the house to go to bed. i laid down and don't remember anything else. i was almost certain that somehow i'd bug todd by making those lovely wheezing noises during the night. apparently, he was as tired as i was or either i didn't make a noise, because he too slept soundly. i woke up when he did this morning, my body now becoming accustomed to this routine of getting up at 5 a.m.

so yeah. good morning. i've been up 20 minutes, used the bathroom and coughed twice. in a minute i plan on straightening up around here (so as to ward off those natural tendencies to let this place become a pig sty), taking my shower and getting ready for work. i've been totally useless at work these days, playing for hours on end in photoshop to get my layer effects to work properly as i crop a menu i created to hell.

ever have those days when you feel like you work your ass off and mostly run in circles, accomplishing nothing? that would be me this week. i can't seem to get a thought to translate properly from my brain to text, image or otherwise. i'm surprised i've actually gotten this far with this entry.

i've had so much going on in my head, though. things in relation to jonathan, things in relation to todd, just things. though i've been dreading it, i'm sorta looking forward to the weekend now so i can have some time away from myself a bit. reflective thinking, you know. everyone needs it.

i've noticed this week that i can't answer a lot of simple questions that jonathan has asked me about my life. questions about me or about decisions i've made. "i don't know," seems like my standard reply, and it's pissing me off a little bit. i was reading somewhere, perhaps in the book i'm currently reading (further down the road less traveled), about what it means when people divert from deep thought, as if to not search for the meaning of their actions. now i'm wondering if that's what i've been doing my whole life...smoothing the surface and not the stuff underneath.

i jokingly mentioned something yesterday about needing the number of a
good psychologist who could help me dig through the mess that is my life. i'm now really wondering if that wouldn't be a good idea.

which also sucks, because it makes me realize that the power i have as an individual might not be as great as the power of the subconscious to bury truths about ourselves.

then again, maybe it's not such a bad thing. i do cope, after all.

it's the eternal quest for truth, i suppose, that makes me want to make sure everything in my life has meaning and substance and that i've made good decisions based on the information i had available for processing at the time.

i suppose now is as good a time as any to start digging.

November 03, 1998


i laugh sometimes at how fast things change in my life. what i find funny is how i am certain that they never will. i'm glad to say i've always been wrong.

and now, there is a new connection... a new person, a new friendship. his name is jonathan.

i can't really put my finger on what makes two people connect in a manner that certainly will change both their lives. but it happens.

the day i met him, i wrote a friend of mine and said something to the effect of "there's this new guy jonathan at work... i'm not sure what it is, but...."

we both knew it was there before we ever said a word to each other. i certainly felt it. i'm positive he did. and it took us a week or so of beating around the bush to finally admit that, "oh, by the way, we're friends."

as if we didn't already know that.

it's all so funny now, looking back. it was just last week, and ever since we've acknowledged our bond i've been thinking and acting differently.

i'm open to change, you know. so i'm purposely leaving myself open on this one.

i can't even imagine it any other way.

October 31, 1998



i laugh sometimes at how fast things change in my life. what i find funny is how i am certain that they never will. i'm glad to say i've always been wrong.

last year at this time (and most of this year, too), i was dealing with the after-effects of a lost connection. i had a friendship (or so i thought) with someone i had met over the internet that ended suddenly and without warning. to say i was devastated would be a great understatement.

with proper amounts of time and also the support of other cyber- friendships, i was able to pick up the pieces and move on. it was hard, however... probably one of the greatest losses i've suffered in recent years. and that's because it was a connection, a mental mindset that i shared with this other person from day one.

i've only had a few connections in my life. one is with todd, my husband of 12 years and the love of my life. one is with reg, an old friend of mine who i never lose touch with, no matter how much time passes in between our conversations, and one was with mark, the aforementioned friend that is no longer.

and now, there is a new connection. his name is jonathan.

i can't really put my finger on what makes two people connect in a manner that certainly will change both their lives. but it happens. the day i met him, i wrote a friend of mine and said something to the effect of "there's this new guy jonathan at work...

October 30, 1998


act II

good morning, the email said. buzz me when you get in.

so i buzzed.

i brought the picture, the email said again. and that cd we talked about.

i'll be right over, i replied. on my way now.

so i went.


it was as intoxicating as that first morning cup of coffee can be. i, too, have my obsessions, you know.

this must be one of them.


i pushed my way through.

and there i was again, assessing the environment. placing myself again in a situation i probably didn't really want to be in.

a moment later i was smiling, eyes closed and head laid back. my shoulders suddenly weren't as tense as they had been. i wanted the moment to last forever.

it didn't, but there will be more.


total non-productivity, i screamed, papers in complete disarray around my desk. file 13 for most, the rest in manilla folders and filed away properly.

one must have ones priorities. and if not, one must pretend.

being a deviant isn't easy.


cool temperatures, heat generated by a beating heart. don't move, please. i won't.

an hour and a half later, the signs were buzzing by on the quiet highway. a little outing, alone.

this was the first time i relaxed, goose bumps on my arm from just being able to sit back for once. feeling a bit guilty when fleeting thoughts would cross my mind, i justified myself with a pat on the back and a smile.

thirty minutes later, the mirrors in the corner of the room were watching my every movement. i eyed them to search for what could be seen.

everything, obviously.

thirty minutes later, the network cards were purposely left in the back seat of my car.

excuses, excuses, i laughed.


thinking, thinking.


be good, it's the weekend. enjoy.

a last look at the week.

have a good one.

(indeed, i will. thanks. you do the same.)


on the trail, laughing, relaxing again.

busy, but not too much. just right.

a small, private celebration.


that familiar voice again.

dinner? time alone?

sure. a plan, at last.

anywhere, he said. i just want to be with you.

i liked the way that sounded, so i agreed.

October 29, 1998


you never plan on things like this to happen. ever.

i've learned that, if anything. but it seems like it's the only thing i've learned. i'm sitting here somewhere in between ecstatic and confused as hell. because this is happening and has been happening and i just realized it.

and we've talked about it. analyzed it. drawn a big circle around it almost so as not to let it go anywhere. and all the while i'm probably fooling myself into thinking that it really doesn't mean anything. because, you know, i hadn't planned on this. and because i hadn't planned on this, hadn't thought about this, hadn't figured this would happen, i didn't expect it to.

it's happening, though.

i could stop it now that i know it exists. stop it by just walking away, not acknowledging its existence anymore and pretending it doesn't count. i could. really. but will i?

and that's what is so strange about this. i know i should walk. i KNOW it. i have rules, guidelines developed just for this type of thing.

but who thinks about rules when you're pushed against a rock and a hard place and you find yourself enjoying it?

October 28, 1998


i'm in a shitty mood today. i didn't much feel like doing anything last night, so i told todd i'd wake up this morning and iron his uniform before he went to work. no problem, he said, are you sure you'll be able to get up? sure i will. no problem. i set the alarm clock for 5 and turned over.

4:47 todd's alarm clock goes off (we have two in case one of them decides not to work properly) and he turns over and nudges me to get up. i look at the clock. 4:47 a.m. "it's not 5 o'clock and that wasn't my alarm," i told him and turned over.

thirteen minutes later i was up anyway. ironing.

it's not the ironing i mind. it's not even getting up. in fact, i'm not really sure why i'm in such a shitty mood right now, but i am. i don't want to be around anyone. i don't want to go back to bed. sleep is not the issue.

i must have had a frustrating dream. maybe i should go back to bed so i can dream something else. awaken more peacefully as it were.

nah. fuck that.

maybe it's the fact that i'm having to explain to the senior apps developer why i don't want to use textured backgrounds and button images from an icon collection. maybe it's that i feel sometimes like no matter how hard i try, i can't ever overcome this non- confrontational wuss that i am. pisses me off.

or maybe it's that travis knows better than any child how to lay a guilt trip on a parent for being less than perfect. last night i was fortunate enough to sit at the dinner table with him while he started listing my shortcomings. what do you say to that? tell him to be quiet? or listen because you're so fucking amazed that your 14-year-old knows you better than you think he does. all i could muster was "I never said I was perfect," and "being a parent is difficult."

even so, i left the table feeling like shit. feeling bad for the things that i could have and didn't do, feeling bad for some of the choices i made, feeling bad in general. i told travis i loved him and i was sorry. and it wasn't that he was seeking the apology, i think he was similarly frustrated with just having been grounded. and you know, most of what he was angry about was the way todd had handled the news of his bad report card.

so it's not all me. i know that. but still, it's impossible for me to control todd's actions too. it's hard for him to accept the fact that his son is less than perfect in some areas. i tried telling travis this. how can i even expect him to understand? i can't.

so blah fucking blah. i feel crappy. so be it. and it's not just travis, either.

my body is revolting against me.

i want to get rid of my motherfucking uterus too. it's healthy, it works, would someone take this thing off my hands and let me live in peace, please? DAMN.

and fucking hormones. what the HELL is up with stupid hormones. i go from nice woman into angry bitch in seconds. i hate myself when i get this way.

and i know it isn't helping much, but i swear that banging on the stupid fucking keyboard as i type this really makes me feel a lot fucking better. it's not like anyone can HEAR me over the internet anyway.


October 27, 1998


i slept like a baby last night. i decided around 11:30 that i was beyond tired, so i forced myself off of the computer and into bed. what a great choice i made.

i woke up at 4:09 a.m. and noticed todd wasn't in bed with me. i found him moments later, stretched out on the couch, the tv remote laying on his chest and the television tuned to espn. he never makes it through a monday night and all the wrestling he plans on watching.

i woke him up and coaxed him into coming back to bed with me. it would have been a smart choice, except that he snored the rest of the morning and kept me somewhat awake the entire time.

i shouldn't complain. he says i do the same thing sometimes. it's still hard for me to believe that i snore... i've never caught myself doing this. i figure it has to be those times when my sinuses are stopped up and i generally can't breathe.

travis got his report card yesterday: two D's, an F, a B and an incomplete. (i have no clue how the incomplete got there... he says i shouldn't worry about it. ha!) it's fairly obvious that he didn't make the smooth transition from middle school into high school, and that perhaps he needs a more structured study environment.

no problem on that one whatsoever. travis now has no phone privileges and can't really do much of anything around here. todd laid out some ground rules for him yesterday that included a minimum of three hours devoted to homework and studying per day. travis wasn't too thrilled about that, but at least was happy that we were willing to compromise should he start bringing home notes from teachers indicating academic and behavioral improvement.

we'll just have to see about this one. i feel like every year we go through one horrible semester, only to have travis turn it around the second one. his motivation has also increased this go-round: he turns 15 in december and can get his permit, grades permitting.

i'm glad there's something to finally push him in that direction.

it's just hard, you know? watching your child adjust and deal with the struggles of life. there's so much i wish i could tell him, so much i wish i could have him avoid... but then, i know that without the experience of having to learn things the hard way, he may never learn anything at all.

casey has gotten me to watch 7th Heaven lately, a show on the WB network that airs monday nights at 8. it's a really wholesome show, so i don't much mind letting her stay up 30 minutes beyond her normal bedtime to do so. and the great thing about this show is that it always deals with some moral issue or life lesson, and i have found that casey usually pays great attention to what's going on and asks me a lot of questions about it for days afterward.

this morning, she was asking me a lot about death, grief and loss. one of the characters from the show last night lost a friend in a car accident and was having a hard time dealing with the associated grief.

"would you cry if i died in a car accident?" she questioned me.

"of course i would," i told her. "i love you very much, casey."

sometimes i think children just need to be reassured that they have a place in their parents hearts.

at any rate, the whole thought of losing my kids in a car accident or some other way has gotten me thinking again about how fortunate i am just to have them. they are good kids overall, despite their bad grades and inability to do their chores without being reminded. i can't imagine my life without them.

and sure, it'll take travis awhile to get into the swing of high school, and will take casey awhile to quiet herself down in a class- room.... but, you know, i'm certainly glad that they have that while to take.

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