Unbreakable's Pearls of Wisdom...

...and Foolish Mutterings


Down the rabbit hole, Texas,
December 06


MARCH 21, 2011 2:12PM

Is It Over Yet?

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I have always lived my life by the axiom That which doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger. I believed it, and often blithely made that comment to others when they related their latest trials or tribulations. Certainly, I had lived through enough life experiences that felt to me as if I should have died from them, and certainly, those experiences had indeed made me stronger. So, it wasn’t just a trite statement that I was mindlessly tossing out to my friends and family. I had lived it. I believed it.


Summer of 2010. My mantra for living no longer contained any sign of optimism or strength. My once cheerful, hopeful disposition had morphed into one of cynicism and despair. Although I had lived under the cloud of depression for all of my adult life, I had managed, through therapy and the prudent use of prescribed medications, to keep it in check, if not completely under control. Not anymore. By the time the summer of 2010 rolled around, I had become a glass half empty person, refusing to believe there might be brighter days ahead. I had convinced myself that the specter of gloom and despair that had been my constant companion for the previous five-and-one-half years was the norm, that I had somehow lucked out in having a long run with good fortune prior to that. Now, I routinely told myself, any good fortune was solidly planted in my rear view mirror. I had become the kind of negative person I had always avoided.


My naturally buoyant nature kept trying to reassert itself, but every time it did, my newfound cynicism firmly planted a boot atop it and pushed it back down. I doubted, I scoffed, I ridiculed, I disparaged. Pessimism settled into my bones like arthritis where it ached and throbbed, robbing me of any sense of peace – be it physical, mental or emotional. At my lowest point, I went to bed every night with one thought in my head: Is it over yet?


That one thing alone should have scared some sense into me, but it didn’t. After weeks of that single despairing thought tormenting me every night, I let go. I pitched myself into the blackest of pits, the deepest hole of despondency and I settled there. I waited to die.


I didn’t ask myself how I got to that place. I didn’t care. I just wanted to die.


But, how did I get there? What started me on that downward spiral? I was well-versed in the matter of dealing with depression. I had danced with that particular devil on numerous occasions and never before had I allowed myself to be hurled into the pit. I was a survivor. I made things happen; I didn’t just let life happen to me. I was a motivator, an encourager, a go-to girl who always had answers. That woman had disappeared and I hadn’t even noticed.


The erosion of my ebullient self began with the death of my father in February of 2005. His death set in motion a chain of events that would challenge even the most determined optimist. Still, I forged ahead, doing what had to be done, fighting the good fight, believing that good triumphs evil and that truth eventually wins out. Settling his estate involved lawsuits, the FBI, a number of mind-numbing betrayals and the discovery that evil in its purest form can and does touch our lives even when we think we have done everything possible to protect ourselves.


All of the deeply held beliefs that formed the foundation for my life crashed down around me during the next five years. Somehow, I managed to keep up the pretense of living my life, but my mind and heart slowly, inexorably crumbled into tiny pieces, leaving me completely broken on the inside. For the sake of brevity, allow me to present a short synopsis of the events of those five and one-half years.


My brother went to prison (framed by my dad’s wife and ex-business partner), the business partner and my dad’s bank then stole my dad’s business, and appropriated a $300,000 life insurance policy that was held as collateral on the business, and I came to understand (through very bizarre circumstances) that my dad’s death came at the hands of his wife. No, I can’t prove it, not without exhuming his body, but I know it to be true. Arsenic poisoning. I suspect this is the same method she used on her two previous husbands, who also died mysterious deaths.


All of these things happened in the first two years after my dad’s death. Try as I might, I was not able to close the estate for another three and one-half years. During that time, my mother passed away, as did my grandmother, and I lost three jobs (no one wants to employ someone who is totally bat-shit crazy and can barely hold a rational thought.) Additionally, my sister and I embarked on a failed crusade to get my brother out of jail and prove the bank had illegally seized the business from my dad’s estate, my daughter suffered a miscarriage (during which time I was too far gone to be of any comfort to her), my son went to jail, then prison (drugs), and I lost my mind.


 And that, dear reader, is the path which led me to the point where I let go and fell headlong, without resistance, into that blackest of pits.


Now, I know that horrible things happen to people all the time. Long chains of horrible events happen to the just and the unjust. I have always considered myself a strong person, one who is able to withstand most any hardship. But, I have also always been someone who does not ask for help. Call it pride, call it stubbornness, call it what you will, but the simple act of asking for someone to help shoulder the load has always been anathema to me. Even the online moniker I used for years is a tell-tale sign of my unwillingness to admit any weakness or the need for help of any kind. Unbreakable.


Ah yes, Unbreakable: (adj) unable to be broken. And yet, I broke. My mind broke. I couldn’t take it anymore. I felt like a failure (after all, I had failed to get my brother out of jail, I failed to get the business back, I failed my daughter, I failed my son… the list goes on.) To sum up: I was a failure, a broken failure.


I was at the bottom. Apparently determined to stay there. But, I’m not there today. What happened?




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Can't wait to here the rest. And I am glad you found a way back. So many don't.
WEll, firsties and all that - but I think you might want to consider changing your moniker, missy. I LOVED this post.
I remember well the path you traveled and the pit you landed in and I have marveled at your strength through it all. One thing I have come to realize as I grow older and that is every time we strive for perfection, we end up failures. there is no perfect, there is only what we can live with....as good as possible.
God, I wish you would exhume the body. If you can prove she killed him then your brother has a better chance of getting out of prison. Bizare! to know your fathers wife killed him. And heartbreaking. rated.
dragonangel - thank you - I'm glad I found my way back, too.

Abby - You know, I've thought about changing it, but I've grown kind of fond of it after all this time. It kind of serves as a reminder that there's no such thing as Unbreakable.

Torman - great words of wisdom, David. I seem to be a bit on the learning disabled side when it comes to that subject, but maybe I'm beginning to get it. :) xoxo

deborah - it's such a hard decision to make. My brother is out of prison - he served 15 months for bank fraud (in relation to the stolen business - convenient, yes?) We still talk about it sometimes (exhuming the body) but the nightmare that took over our lives and nearly destroyed all of us is hard to revisit. My brother is the most insistent about not revisiting it. He says we've gone on with our lives and it wouldn't change anything. And I'm afraid to revisit the insanity, out of fear of what it did to me last time. She still tries to call me from time to time. I never answer.
I think your brother said it all.. You move on.. Sometimes I dont know how but you do.
Unbreakable, you are a woman among women...your grit over the time I have known you on OS has been remarkable...I know too well the normally buoyant spirit trying to rise up only to be shoved back down...and then...I'm wondering if this happened with you, too...in pain, running into those who will shove that spirit down as well...I had to remove myself from a few 'friendships' I made while depressed...I am so glad you have reached this place, Kim...I know well that feeling of release as well...xox
What a life you have led. I am glad you can use this venue to work through it. Waiting for the next. RRRR
Linda - You're right about moving on - how we do it sometimes is a huge mystery and at times, a downright miracle, but yes, we move on, don't we? Big Hugs to you, too.

Robin - Ah, Robin, I feel like you and I are soulmates on this subject. We've both fought and scrabbled our way back from the rubble. And yes, absolutely I had the same experience of having to distance myself from some relationships as the light started to leak back in. Thank goodness we both had the presence of mind to recognize the need to do that. ((Hugs to you!))
You are a very strong person. I have learned the hard way that even the strong need help sometimes. I can honestly say that I understand what you are saying, what you were feeling, and where you were.
I was there last summer, I wanted to give up. But you can't give up on living. We both have made it out the other end of crazy and hectic to a much better place, and many more great things to come.
Be patient with yourself, let it go and more forward.

"You can't move a mountain in a day. You can only move it one pebble at a time."
Your friends are here to help you move those pebbles. Let them help.
Lots of love and many huge hugs to you..
(((((Unbreakable)))))) angel wings to wrap you up..

"Don't be afraid that life will end. Be afraid that life will never begin."
Bea - it's never been boring, that's for sure.

fireeyes - not being able (or willing) to ask for help is one of my greatest weaknesses. I'm hoping the recognition of that will be the impetus for change.
PS glad you're back - I missed you!
I think I understand more than I wish I did. You are and have been an inspiration to me and others. Hard knocks...tough to take them without feeling they will drag you down.
Un/B: I understand, I too had a two year period which knocked the wind out of me a five years back or so. You know what, I don't think you're broken. It's okay to bend and cave in sometimes, it stops us from breaking. Looking forward to reading the turnaround.
Not being able to ask or willing to ask for help or allowing someone to help is my largest weakness.. Then it would come the stubbornness to think that I can conquer it all on my own without anyone helping.
I have learned that those two things can bring a very strong person down to the darkest of depths of the bottom..
I know because I was one that spiraled to the bottom because of those things that were my worst weaknesses. But I also learned that our weaknesses can also become our strengths.

I have missed you too.
I've been at that point too. It's incredible what women endure before we break. Also, it's incredible how gorgeous our ascent is, when we recover.

I can't wait to read more. Riveting writing.
You know I will relate to your catalogue of disasters but for totally different reasons. Sensitive souls seem to have many burdens to shoulder and have a tendency to self recrimination. We often can't control what life throws at us or our reaction to it. There's no shame in admitting we feel rock bottom.

People tell me life never gives us more than we can cope with. I'd question that at times, but the fact you've come through all this tragedy is pretty good evidence.

I'm pleased you're pulling through and you write so well about the bad times despite their disturbing nature.
They say truth is stranger than fiction - and this is unbelievable. How on earth you managed to emerge intact as life threw one curve ball after another at you is beyond me. I guess I will have to wait to find out.
you know i love you, girl, and that we understand each other well enough for me to say: why is it always some damn family thing or things that pushes a person off the cliff, hmm? the people who you think are the last ones on earth that would wish you harm or treat you badly? i swear to god, it's more than i can think through with my remaining brain cells.

now go ahead. tell the rest of the story. you know we're listening here and cheering you on. xoxo
Buffy - The shitty things life throws at us, huh? From one survivor to another - booyah! Love ya, girl.

Scarlett - Believe me, it was damn hard to admit I was broken, having always prided myself on being Unbreakable. But it was the first step on the road back.

fireeyes - exactly right - our weaknesses can become strengths once we confront them.

Rei - it's incredible how gorgeous our ascent is, when we recover I love that!

Elisa - I'm not sure how I feel about that axiom now, either. I always believed it BEFORE, but then life broke me. Now I realize that everyone is weak sometimes, and that's okay. It's all in the "getting back up" part.

Linda - You've certainly had more than your fair share of life's hard knocks - we're kindred souls that way. I guess we're just made of pretty strong stuff, you and I. xoxo

Margaret - I know, right? I would have never believed it if I hadn't lived it. I wrote a book about it, but I fictionalized it because... well, who would believe it, right?

femme - I don't know why either, but it always is some damn family that puts that final nail in the coffin. Damn. Part 2 coming up soon. xoxo
Wow, change the list of causative--or at least precipitating events, and the names, but keep everything else, including the timeline, and there sit I. In my case people kept dying, one after the other after the next..and since I was the go-to person, people came to me to be comforted, uplifted, and encouraged . I finally went under for the last time, and coming up was a 5 year process. I applaud you. Can't wait to hear the rest!
Satori - life can really be a bitch, can't it? Glad you made it back, too. Helluva ride, huh?
xo, much love to you. your strength is there, and with the support and affection of your friends here and IRL, the journey to light will continue. I look forward to the next chapter. I think your telling this story has shown you've earned the avatar name.
Still waiting for the 8 second whistle!! Glad to be here as well.
barry - Thanks for that vote of confidence. I appreciate your encouraging words more than you know! xoxo

Satori - the 8 second whistle - I hear ya! LOL
I hope it is over UB. I got to know you here just about the time of your son's troubles, and thought that was so difficult. I had no idea about what you suffered prior to that. I'm so sorry - yet so inspired by your shining strength. I'll look forward to reading the next segment. An emphatic hug to you, dear lady.
We watched you fall. We held our breaths and prayed for you.
We knew you were in deep, but had no good way to help you, so we prayed.
Every once in a while, your head bobbed up above the water here, but then back down you went.

You say you are "unbreakable," and we believe you, but perhaps every person has a limit, and point of no return? Perhaps all you faced was too much for even you?

But we waited for you here, and now..here you are!

Have I told you how very glad I am you are back here? Have I told you how very much I admire and respect you?

Turns out you were right all along;...you really are "Unbreakable."
Can't wait for the "good" part. I'm in awe of what you have been through and come through. Failure? No!
Okay, I am well and truly hooked. Vulnerability is so painful and yet so essential. I know well of this tumbling "headlong, without resistance into that blackest of pits", and that sense of watching yourself from a distance, aghast. You have such a gift for describing the indescribable. I am honored to be on the same planet.
You found a very long ladder? :)

Oh come on! We need more and soon!

Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln . . .

Wow. I mean, wow.
Fusun - You know, it's funny, when something that traumatic happens in your family, there's an element of shame that accompanies it - as if we are at fault ourselves in some way. It's hard to explain, but it's so horrific that it kind of bleeds over onto everyone in the family. I think that's part of what makes it so very difficult to come to terms with. Thanks for your unfailing support, Fusun. xoxo

JD - what a beautiful, heartfelt comment. I can't tell you how much this means to me, dear friend. You are a jewel. Thank you. xo

trilogy - you are someone who has known more than your own share of life's knock-out blows, and I have always marveled at your strength and grace. You've been an inspiration to me on so many occasions. Thank you, Marlene.

Gail - your straight from the heart comments always leave me in tears. Thank you seems so inadequate, but... thank you. xo

Tink - something like that, yes. :-)

xenon - very soon, I promise. I'm on a roll now!

Pilgrim - absolutely the perfect, most fitting comment! xoxo
I do not feel you should stand out in a rain storm..omg, I have never heard of anyone having such terrible things happen, and so close to each other. Sorry, and i know that does not help. I am circling the bowl myself, but not like you. Wanna hear, hope ur ok!
Brave woman! Thank you for having the courage to tell your story. Having fought the "Big D" most of my life (with, and now without pharmaceutical intervention), I know the places you describe. Can't wait to hear the rest.... of the story!
Cindy - LOL - I think that's good advice - no standing out in the rain for me! I am doing well now. It was a long road, but whew! I made it.

Louise - thank you for visiting my blog - for reading and for your great comment.
I'm so sorry that I'm late here to read.

You promised this post and, by crikey, you made good on it!

You may have been near-broken but you were never a failure. I am deeply moved by all that you have been through; but I think more so by your grace and dignity, lovely lady.

A wonderful post. A wonderful lady.
Kate - dear friend - what a gracious and lovely comment. Thank you! xoxo
holy shit.

I'm with you all the way!

particularly having gone through my own little hell of depression that I literally had to crawl out of, I get this...I get how overwhelming and smothering life can sometimes be. I'm SO glad for you, that you climbed out of the pit. And it is that, the blackest of holes.
Oh, what trials!! I'm so sorry to hear this has been your past year...
I could relate to the death of a parent beginning it all, but the repercussions for you have been immense on so many levels. Whew.
so was there ever any criminal prosecutions?
my dear friend, I think you must be a world class body builder (how strong you are because you didn't die)
Monkey - life can deliver some pretty killing blows. But it feels so good to come back out in the light, doesn't it? xoxo

Just Thinking - actually it was the past 5 years. It just kept going and going and going... Longest five years of my LIFE.

vzn - nope. none at all. Unfortunately sometimes evil does triumph simply because we lose strength (or our minds!) I'm not quite the idealist I used to be, more a resigned realist now. It kinda sucks.

Lady Dove - sad to say, but I wanted to die for a long time. Just now learning to live again. Finally.