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The Facade Crumbles

And I confront again the fact that I cannot do this.
I can't.
Never have.
Never will.
I am wholly inadequate in the face of this task.
I cannot navigate these waters.
I'm drowning.
So are my kids.

Kate especially.
Pray for Kate, please.

Underneath the happy smiles,
the terrific grades,
the school stuff,
the sports stuff,
all of that.

Underneath, it's miserable.
And I'm so angry.
It's so unfair that my children have to live through this.

Everything I can do is not nearly enough.
They need their father.
They need Dave.
They have me.
And no-one else.
I am
and completely

Even with each other,
so busy insulating ourselves
from the onslaught of grief
that we've created separate
little pods
of isolation
in our home.

I sometimes feel like the little Dutch boy.
Stopping small leaks.
Or Smokey the Bear.
Putting out small fires.
Patching up.
Putting back.
Propping up.
Band-Aids for hemorrhaging hearts.

It was bound to fail.

And now it's like I'm trying to stand in the gap.
But I'm so small.
And the tidal wave that's coming is huge-antic.

And I'm holding my breath.
Watching it crush my children.
And there's not a damn thing I can do about it.
Not a damn thing.
HOLD ON - FROG-fully rely on God!


  1. Oh Chellebelle,

    Something made me come to your blog at this very moment, you just posted this a short while ago. Where to begin.....I am so sad reading this tonight. Your words...pierce the night. And I, too, am up late.... dare I say, yes, it is bound to crumble? It always does Chelle, for all of us. We all carry a facade you know. Even when times are good, we do. And it does crumble. And we put the pieces back together again. and sometimes we build another facade, and sometimes we build a wall that no one can break though. And sometimes we build something real. But we do put the pieces back, don't we. And we go on. And you will. As you have. But it is ok to cry. And its ok to be mad. And its ok to want to throw the towel in. this too shall pass. Your children, dear chelle, you are too close to it to see. They are beautiful and strong and wonderful. And yes, they need Dave. Damn it they do. But look how far they have come, how far you all have. How they continue to blossom inspite of it all. Yes there are bad days. Yes we go backwards. Yes we take tiny steps. Yes we are angry and sad and mad at the world. But sometimes we smile. And sometimes we take leaps forward. And sometimes, we think it might be ok, someday. And so we go on. I'm sorry Chelle. I'm so sorry you feel this way, today, tonight. If only I were a country mouse in Walla Walla, I'd be at your doorstep right now with a hug. Instead, I am sending you this big cyber hug ( ) all the way from the 58th floor. Somebody out here loves you dear one.

  2. Huge hugs to you this morning. I have no profound words.

  3. I'm not writing much at all these days because my mind is in a bad place.

    I think I always thought that the 5-year post diagnosis mark would be a happy thing but for me it's brought a wave of depression and anger that I haven't experienced since Steven's diagnosis.

    So I'm silent as I stew in anger and disbelief at this life I found myself in.

    Then I read your post and I feel bad, mad at myself for not getting a grip.

    So you've found yourself a single parent of kids that are that age where the struggles are so big. They're finding their way and they need their dad.

    And so do you.

    One thing I do know-- you are not completely alone, it's clear that you have friends who care.

    I wish I lived closer. We could have coffee or wine or something and tell each other our sad tales and cry with laughter interspersed among the tears.

    Because that's how life is.

    I could have written your post with a few modifications. Even though people are physically here, sometimes they're not mentally here and that causes a different sort of problem.

    I live with two adult males right now. Can I loan one of them to you?

    A friend of mine, a bereaved BT mom, wants us to do our own wife swap. She has the feeling that we might be able to fix some of each other's problems. Sometimes what's required is a fresh perspective.

    Hugs to you my dear. I have the strong feeling that there are a few more joyful moments left in your life, even though they're hiding right now.

  4. Chelle
    I do live closer than Cathy, Kathy and Lesleegp but we hardly ever see each other. Life is busy all the time; too busy as you well know. I can't imagine, like these other woman can, the deep cut that you, Kenny, Zach and Kaitlyn feel. Although my dad is gone and I miss him like there is no tomorrow I had him to grow up with and my mom had him on the kind of days you are talking about. Your words make me cry for you because of the pain I wish you all did not have to experience. Although at this moment it doesn't matter and it certainly doesn't make the pain better but that love you carry, that the children carry and that Dave still appears in little ways each and every day helps to carry the cross you bear. Just know although I can't feel it; I understand it and I wish the same wishes you wish for yourself, for Kenny, for Zach and for Kaitlyn. Know I love all four of you with my whole heart and soul.

  5. I always try to remind myself that I never know from looking at a person what they are going through. You are a true example of that. Praying for you and your family.

  6. I can only reiterate what Cathy said ... we all fall, we all get up, we all go on ... especially when we don't think we can. I don't know what it was that hurt you so badly my friend, but whatever it was, I pray that it goes away ... and never comes back again.

    Big, huge cyber hugs to you and the kids.

  7. You do know, Chelle, that sometimes it is not ONE thing, it is just one MORE thing...not necessarily big or even important, just one more thing that you are handling matter how competently...just ALONE! And being strong sometimes feels like the greatest insult, the final straw! You just want to stand in the middle of the street and yell that you have had it, and shrug the world away, like Atlas. When you have a partner you trust as you did Dave, you can even do that, shrug something--whatever its size--at him until you can pick it up again--or until he needs to shrug it back to you.

    It is that loss of the fundamental partnership that is just such a damn hole--crater--in your life. Even when things are great, there is still the absence of the one person who would just appreciate the hell out of the greatness, knowing what it really means without a single word. It is that non-verbal absence that is so hard; no one with whom to exchange that look, or smile, or frown, or shrug....

    If I were in WW, I would go get Dee and we would show up on your doorstep with coffee and hugs and stupid grins and bad jokes and lots of silence, as well as a huge pot of Tear Soup.

    It must be in the atmosphere. Life here could hardly be more difficult right now and I have missed Rob so much since August. Is the third year that much harder than the first and the second? Why do people think this gets easier, when the longer it goes on, THE LONGER IT HAS GONE ON AND THE LONELIER I AM!!

    I echo the sentiments of all who want to remind you that these kids of yours did have Dave and still do have you and those are real and tangible blessings--for them! There is nothing I can think of for you, watching them grow up without him.

    I am so sorry!


  8. I am so sorry for what you are going through. I wish I could be in WW too. We could all show up at your door with coffee and hugs. As someone said, it is one MORE thing. One more of the many that you don't need, and it too will pass. One step, one breath at a time.


  9. I'm sorry you're struggling so. I have no profound words. All I can say is that I think we all do the facade-building/breaking down/rebuilding to varying degrees. So it's ok. Right? It's got to be! You know I'm asking deep questions this week, too.


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