Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A poem from Nov 4, 2010

My mind goes to dark places sometimes

My mind goes to dark places sometimes
Grief, and self-doubt, and insecurity, and
All those sad little places
But sometimes my mind goes to someplace deeper

Everything around me disappears into blackness
And all there is is me
In this little bubble
Where there is nothing but
Despairing numbness

There’s no survival instinct
If I were on the ground
And someone were kicking me
I wouldn’t curl into a fetal position
I would just lie there

Not really aware of the implications
Or the consequences
Of being kicked
One minute I’m weeping so hard
It really feels like my head will explode

From the pressure
Capillaries bursting everywhere
And the next minute I’m so silent
I’m nearly unconscious before I realize
I’ve stopped breathing

The next minute
I’m in a panic attack so horrifying
I feel high from the oxygen
Though my throat has entirely closed up
Just me and pillows and nothing

I’m afraid to let people see me
And if they hear me, the tears start again
I’m in this dark, dark place for the first time in a year
And I had to ask two friends of mine
If you can die from crying.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

In the Public Eye

It has been over two years since they died, and people are still talking. I really did think that after the first few months of news articles and media reports, and then after that big national story after the police report was finished it would all be over. But people are still talking.

My brother's university has retold his story as part of the "violence on campus" review. They didn't notice or seem to care that he hadn't been able to attend university for ages because of his debilitating OCD.

Battered women's shelters retell my mother's story as an example of what happens when you marry an abusive husband. Oh yeah, he was abusive. He never stopped crushing her with love or punching her with poems or slapping her with gifts. I remember that time in the garage that he picked up that knife to really show her what he thought of her...he was carving a lion out of a block of wood for her birthday. That's the kind of man you do not want to marry.

And oh, my daddy. The demon, the deranged man, the mass murderer. He must have been a violent drunk, y'know. He must have hated his whole family, y'know. Really? The man who would fall asleep after half a glass of wine? The man who had no problem hugging his sons and telling them he loved them? The man who stayed up late telling us stories, and woke up early to make us pancakes? The man who wrote me poetry and bought me roses on Valentine's Day? The man who fainted when his first child was born? The man who almost cried when he first saw me on stage? Oh yes, talk about a deranged son-of-a-bitch.

It's a matter of decorum to have respect for the dead, and in the case of my family, nobody seems to have any. They have been slandered again and again and again, and I have to sit in agonized silence because I know that any steps I might take to set straight the false accusations and assumptions would only be sensationalized and throw me into further grief.

It has been two years. When will people finally stop talking? When will I finally be able to grieve in peace - like everybody else has the freedom to do?

All I want is for everyone to know about the wonderful people I have lost, and how much I love them. Will one girl's love be enough to counteract all of the fear and all of the hate?

Journal Entry from Jan 30, 2009

        I'm too young, vulnerable, and dependent a girl to live without my mommy.
        I miss you.
        I need you.
        I want to hold you.
        I want you to hold me.

        Mommy, mommy.


        You were perfect, okay?

        You really were.

        And I'm really, really feeling that now.

        I don't want to have to live the rest of my long life without you.
        I still have so much to learn from you.
        I still have so much to tell you.
        I still have so much to ask you.

        I know you're watching me, and protecting me, and listening and loving and helping...
        But I just want to hug you. I want to kiss you. I want to feel you. I want to hold your hand and rest my head against your shoulder.

        I'll never have that again.

        I wish I had treasured that last time that much more.


        I LOVE YOU

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Thoughts on my Dad

My thoughts have been intensely ambivalent since my family died, and I feel guilt for every thought I have concerning my family. I eventually couldn't stand it anymore, and sat down and typed what I felt as if no one would ever read it. This piece of writing is easily one of the most honest things that has come out of me.

November 28th, 2009

I don’t know what to think about him. So I have to write, because I’m his daughter. I’m his daughter, and this is what he gave me. This is in my blood, right from him.

I think he’s a fucking coward, for taking such a cheap and horrible way out. But I think he’s so brave for being the only one of us to have the guts to take a stand.

I know he loved us with everything in him, so that it consumed him, so that he’d commit the most horrible act, because saving one of us meant more to him than his own life. But I doubt that he could have any love for us at all for taking away every single thing that we ever loved.

I think he’s a murderer. He is a murderer.
But I think he’s some sort of saviour. Some sort of euthanizer.

I think he’s the truest of men, for having it in him to make decisions for his family, and take care of them in ways they never could themselves. But I think he might as well be a eunuch for the cowardice it takes to not be able to face something like bankruptcy.

I’m thankful to him for ending such a horrible situation. But I’m astonished he would rather give up on our family than fight through more hardships.

I know he loved Mommy. He dedicated everything in his life to her, until the very end. But I can’t help but think he got some sort of satisfaction out of killing her. And out of killing D*****. Even though I know it hurt him so much that he felt it in every square inch of his body, I know that some part of him was satiated by killing them.

He’s the man who raised me, who loved me, who protected me. He’s my Daddy, and I’m his little girl. We have the same birthday. We have the same soul. We understand each other like no one else.

And me, it was me that he hurt more than anyone, and he knew it, he knows it. That’s why the suicide note was addressed to me first, to me before the elder, to the T before the S. It was always chronological, always, it was “D*****, S**** and Tee,” and that was fine, because I was the baby, I was meant to be at the end. He addressed it to me first because he knew that all of the pain was targeted at me. He knew that. He knew that this would affect S****’s life, his life, it but was me that this would kill. Not my life, but me. And somehow addressing it to me is supposed to make me feel like he loved me?

How could he possibly love me? He knew what this would do to me. I was supposed to be that much more special to him. With all we shared… we were the artists. We were the Pisces. We were the singers. We shared stories and songs and sports and introversion and somehow, on some level, we both saw life in the same way. I was the one he sent to Greece, and France, and Egypt and I was the one he sent to debating provincials and Envirothon internationals and I was the one he drove out of town for plays and concerts. I was his little girl. It wasn’t that he loved me more, but he knew we had a special bond, and he treated that with respect. I thought he was the sort of man and the sort of Daddy who would sacrifice himself for me, completely. I think, somehow, he thinks he did. And sometimes I see it that way. But sometimes – most of the time – I see it as him being too afraid to sacrifice himself for us anymore.

This whole situation…I feel so protected, and so betrayed, and so emancipated, and so abandoned.

There’s that word that that Distress Centre exec woman suggested to me: ABANDONED.

I had never even considered it, but it fit so, so perfectly. I feel so abandoned – and not just by Daddy. By all of them. I blame all of them. Somehow, they were all a part of it. By suggesting the mass suicide. By not being strong enough to fight past their problems, like I feel I had done. For falling victim to it all. For fighting. For always fighting with each other. They were the ones. Mommy and D*****, they started all of it. It was all them. We were the victims. Daddy, S**** and I. We were the victims. And Daddy stood up for us. He stood up for us in the end.

I love myself for getting through all of this. But I hate myself so deeply for all of these horrible thoughts that are always in me. They’re all horrible – because some defend him, some defend the act, and all the rest are affronts to my love for him. There’s not a single thought in my head that can justify it all. I either love him and love the act, or hate him and hate the act.

It’s always been this: choosing between my Mommy and my Daddy. Always. Auntie J***** understands that. And it’s still not over. I can’t love my Daddy because it means I think it’s okay that he murdered my mother – he stabbed her to death. I can’t love my Mommy because it means agreeing that I should take her side against him. I yell at them. I look up to the heavens and I yell at them. Often. I say “this is your fault” and I say “you’d better damn well be getting along now” and I blame them for it all. I don’t blame my Daddy, I blame all of them. And I yell because it makes me feel better. Because it makes me feel like all of the mistakes I’m making now are justified. It makes me feel like I can do whatever shit I want to and it’s all their fault. It’s their fault for screwing me up and it’s their fault for leaving me to deal with it on my own. I yell at them up in heaven or maybe it’s hell or whatever because I have so much anger in me and I don’t know what to do with it. I do things I know they wouldn’t approve of and for a second I feel guilty because I know they’re watching, but then I turn my head upwards and I say (the same words every time) “You know what? FUCK you! You LEFT me!” And then there are the times that the only way I can get through the day is by imagining that my Mommy is right next to me stroking my hair or my hand or that my Daddy is smiling at me with that silly, knowing grin that he and I always shared with moments like “Hello, DaDA” because otherwise I would just crumble.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Grieving and Muted

I started this blog because I need to be heard.

...and people do not listen to me easily. It's the stigma of what I need to talk about, and the constancy of my need to talk about it, and the person I become when I'm grieving. People are afraid of what happened, they are worn down by my leaning on them, and they do not like the angry, desperate, spiteful and withering girl I am in those moments.

I have struggled for two long years with what I can and cannot say to people and with the lack of a truly safe place to be honest about how I feel. Shortly after my family died, I tried confiding in a close friend about how much I wished I could be with them. She went behind my back and notified everyone in my residence (including my peers) that I was suicidal. She was wrong, and suddenly everyone around me was treating me like I would slit my wrists if I wasn't supervised when cutting vegetables.

I learned my lesson, so when six or so months later I tried confiding in a different friend about how I felt like giving up on university and taking a term off, I very explicitly said to him: "I am not suicidal. I am only thinking of giving up on school, not life. I want to live. I am not suicidal." Nevertheless, a few days later I received a phone call from the community safety office checking up on me.

There are moments in which I feel completely alone. I have a right to express that, however inaccurate it might be; but one would be surprised at how many people take offense to that sentiment, as though I'm purposely disregarding their affection for me.

When I become close to someone, it's important to me that they know what I've been through - I can't be comfortable and honest with them otherwise. But three times out of four, after confiding in them the details of my tragedy, I never hear from them again.

I've learned to tiptoe around people. I am not ashamed of my family, I am not ashamed of my emotions, and I am not ashamed of succumbing to moments or even days of rage and hatred and complete hopelessness. But the average person, it seems, is greatly ashamed of the things I have to say.

I often wonder: if my mom and dad and brother had all died in a car crash two years ago, how much more support and understanding would I have received? How many more people would actually have lent me an open, unassuming and nonjudgmental ear?