Friday, 30 November 2007


Bad day. No post. No smiles either.

Thursday, 29 November 2007

It got a smile anyway. That's something.

Everything this boy says is either stirringly profound, or impossible to read a motive into. I've given up and have taken to waiting a beat for him to explain whatever he says in detail, after it's out there. Otherwise he'd be on the receiving end of a lot more slammed doors.

Tread lightly, or you may cause the princess to cry tears of glass and then you'd be forced to walk across it to reach her, and we can't have that now, can we?

Here, an email from Ben, who gets bored being a cubicle drone downtown and likes to compose long chatty letters to us all. I'm not special.

Or am I?
Dear Baby Bee,

I remember quite a few years back where we said if for some reason we both found ourselves single we would marry each other for company and proceed to see who could annoy each other more. You said you'd leave crumbs in the butter and I said I would publically scratch my ass. You said something about curlers in bed and I spit out my coffee picturing a whole Briar Cup team in there with us. The offer stands, bee. If you want it I'm totally bored with the sluts down at the club and would love to make an honest woman of you yet. I'd also like to see if I could outlive the curse you carry. I know I could kick it's ass.

I know you'll kill me for writing this. You'll probably show it to Paddy and probably Dr. Perfect too and everyone will decide I have no class but I do not care! I only care about you being happy right now. I'll do whatever I can to see that you are and that you stay that way. I promised your big dumb husband I would never fuck up again when it came to you.

So if you won't be the Liz to my Richard let me propose this instead. Plan B (get it? Huh?). A surprise for you. Next month, over Christmas. Make no plans for the holidays, I think you might like this instead, based on the anti-holiday discussion we had the other day. I'll keep the details to myself until I see you.

Now I have to go submit a whole bunch of fucking crap invoices so I can get my monkey pat. Tomorrow-sleep in and I will make coffee and get the kids to school and then we'll get some Thai. Because if at first you don't succeed, Thai, Thai again.

See you tomorrow morning. Tell Dr. Perfect he's an asshole for me, but in the nicest possible way, k? ;)


PS. If you want to do Thai tonight I can bring. Is it a black Thai event? Sorry, my hands are Thai'd, I have to wear jeans and wool-no tux. It's fucking cold out there, Bridge!

I would love to know what he's up to.

Morning glories.

When the sun came up this morning I opened all the drapes in every room to find a beautiful pattern etched heavily on the window panes, a testament to the warmth inside being no match for the frigid weather outside.

Ruthie said the pattern looked like feathers and I realized that she was right. They were feathers, the feathers that make up Jacob's wings, and he has wrapped his wings around this house to let us know that he is still here with us.

Wednesday, 28 November 2007


Skateboard Jesus is back. I don't know where he went for most of autumn but this afternoon he was there and that freaks me out thinking about it. It seems to be a day for history-reliving.

I gave him a fifty dollar bill. I haven't had blue keys in my bag for months. There was no one to give them to for so long. He didn't even see the bill. He closed his dirty hand around it and stared at Joel, driving the rover and then his eyes travelled back to rest on mine, so red and tired now and he nodded and said,

God Bless you, you need it, child.

He knows. I'm telling you, he knows.


Jon Foreman's voice is my comfort music today and pretty much anytime I want something uplifting or just plain beautiful to hear. I'm rather picky with what I put into my damaged ears and he has never let me down. I doubt he ever will.

I wonder if he reads my journal? That would be neat-o (most of the time, anyway).


PS: I'm going to try to find some silver in the lining of my shroud here. Some ups for the downs, some hope. Something good

Tuesday, 27 November 2007


I spend a lot of time talking to the dog lately.

It's twosday, kids.

I have a whole town at my disposal, I think. I had eight offers just today of help in the form of picking the kids up at school and feeding them lunch, afterschool playdates and anything else I might need for them. While it makes my skin crawl to see the pity on people's faces it warms me that so many people have put themselves out to help.

Really, I think the kids are doing the best of any of us. I have mostly turned down offers to take them, partially because I was advised not to restrict their access to me, not to shunt them away from me when I am what is left but also because I'm selfish. They are all I have and I need to keep them close. I need to watch them and make sure they keep doing well. I need to keep them safe from a life that has so far seen a little too much sadness. I don't want them to ever pay for my choices ever again.

They are doing amazing in spite of me. They're not harbouring any false pretenses with regards to death. They know Jacob isn't coming back, no one is in denial. They aren't afraid that I will die next. They're okay to cry when they feel like it or talk about Jacob often. Okay, twenty-four hours a day which kills me but I do it too. We do it at home and we do it in counseling. Nothing is off limits.

They had perfect report cards this quarter. They haven't acted out or up. There's no sleepless nights now, no residual behavior that's out of character. They've been talking on the phone to all of their grandparents and enjoying the guys being around a lot. They are good, good kids and I am blessed. Like I said, if it wasn't for them I wouldn't get up in the mornings, I would just let myself drown.

The routine is key. Nothing changes. They went back to school the Monday after, while I went away to the hospital and PJ ran the show and did an awesome job. The guys have drawn up a schedule so that they don't step on each other's toes, and so that someone is always here with us for meals and just because. The kids are enjoying having them here, they are like second, better ears they can talk off.

The kids come first. Bridget is simply watched closely. In case you weren't aware, that's how life has always gone here.

If you have more questions or feel the need to berate my parenting skills right now, right at this time, please feel free to email me directly and not talk about me behind my back. I don't like rumors and assumptions are worse, as are judgements culled from being half-informed. I would much prefer you just put it out there and if I think it's off limits I'll tell you so.

On the subject of email condolences, thank you from the bottom of my heart. I'm not responding to anything yet and I don't know when I will but I did open a few and was so moved by you. So, so moved.

Empty head.

Today would have been a perfect day to stick my head out from under the blankets, turn off the alarm, wrap Jacob's shirt just a little tighter around my bones and go back to sleep for the rest of the day. I could have dreamed about him, or just slept a dreamless sleep on drugs like I mostly do now.

Oh, and the mail. I have to change a whole bunch of stuff. I didn't do it before. I thought he would come back for me.

On second thought, I just need to cancel today. No, the week. The whole rest of it. All of it.

If it wasn't for Ruth and Henry I would most certainly be dead by now.

Shh. Fuck. I didn't say it. I just think it alot.

Monday, 26 November 2007

Life. Changing.

I'm so far away inside my head. I went from everything to nothing in the blink of an eye.

I'm going to take a deep breathe now and try to explain this and then I don't know how I'll write again here. I really don't at this point. I'd really like to, I just don't know if I can.

People started arriving around nine, the night of Jacob's birthday. First Christian, Joel and then PJ and Ben. Then Mark, Jason (in his police uniform which should have been a tip-off) Sam and Elisabeth arrived in a group. Then Duncan. August appeared from nowhere. Robin, Chris and Andrew. When everyone was there, Ben put his arms around me and asked me to sit down. Everyone had their hands on me, touching me. Steadying me.

I thought they were here for an intervention. I had two drinks that week. I was so fucking weak. I didn't get scared until Lisabeth went upstairs to check the kids. Yes, it appears they were here to make sure I was sober.

But they were here for a different reason. They had something to tell me.

The night before his thirty-seventh birthday, Jacob learned to fly. He walked out onto the balcony or the roof (we're not sure which) of his high-up hotel room in a city I have never been to and he unfurled his breathtaking (and not imaginary in the slightest) wings and he flew and I bet it was the biggest rush in the world. He has base-jumped, he would know.

He is in heaven now and now I know he was most definitely an angel, here on loan from God. For me.

I will never run into him on the street by chance. I'll never have a second chance to fall in love with him. I never fell out of love with him in the first place.

Jacob's parents came out to be with us, looking after us, taking care of their son's family, though he tried valiantly to make things easy for me legally by extricating himself from our lives, he pulled it off in name only. They were here because they want to hang on to Jacob, through us. They said I made him so much happier than any other time in his life and they were happy we finally got together.

I thought they would hate me. I hate me.

The night of the sixth I woke up in the grip of a panic attack, the likes of which I've never had before. Not even when Jacob was with me. It took forever to calm down again, and I never went back to sleep. It happened the night that Jacob died. Somehow, I knew.

A million lifetimes ago he extracted a promise from me that I would stay on earth until God decided it was time for me to go and no sooner. I'll be keeping that promise and I know now why I made it. Because he would never have made it and he needed to be sure that the children wouldn't lose both of us. He was sent to show me the beauty of life and when I finally saw it his work here was complete and he took himself home. He protected me from certain death and once the danger had passed it took his usefulness with it. That was how he explained it to me in part of the letter. He said a million times I did not cause this, I only prolonged his plans to die, but I will never believe that and will blame myself into eternity. Not til I die, for I am already cold. He stuck around long enough to get me away from Cole and he never expected to fall so hard.

His persistence for me to be with him was his last chance at life.

And why the hell didn't he just stay?

We were happy. He didn't have to do this.

I like to hope that now I have Jacob watching over me. That deep down he did want me to succeed and go on to have some kind of life after Cole and things were never as easy for Jacob as he claimed them to be.

Part of me has died with him, I won't lie. Briefly I was well-prepared to break every promise and join him but I doubt we'll end up in the same afterlife and he is right. I need to be here for Ruth and Henry and I will remain here for them forever. I was never sure how but it's surprisingly easy to walk around with a gaping hole in your soul. I hope you never have to try it. And we'll be okay. I'm going to be okay. He did that for me, he made sure I was surrounded by people who care, people he forced to care in the right way, and he gave me the tools to deal with this. He isn't coming back for me but he's with me forever.

I took off when I found out. I ran. I left Sam and Lisabeth in charge of the kids and I went to Caleb's hotel, an explanation which I again will save for another day. Ben took me out of there two days later and I went far far away to a place where they gave me shots full of wonderful dreams to keep me from screaming because for a very long time, I couldn't seem to stop. When I stopped screaming they talked very gently and eventually I talked back. Eventually they figured I was okay to go home, with help. I did not want to be there. I don't want to be here.

Jacob had no life insurance, no valuables, no legacy except for his impact on the people he touched. A week after his birthday a box from him was delivered to the house. It held all of his journals, all of his thoughts, everything. On the top was another letter to me and this is now my heart, his priceless words to me explaining to me that he wanted me to read all of it, that he didn't leave it here before for fear I would destroy it all unread when he left, and pure assurances that this wasn't my fault. Some journals I had never seen, the ones he hid from me.

I have some pictures and his letter and his ring and what's inside my now-destroyed heart. And when I said it was harder than him being dead to know he was out there in the world without me, I was wrong. At least when he was alive, I had hope.

Reading his thoughts in his own writing has been the best medicine I ever took. Some of it is so difficult but all of it so beautiful. He really did love me. I was his world, with the kids but he just couldn't stay. Mentors were not mentors but long-term therapists and analysts, meetings were sessions, and long trips away that he took during our entire relationship were never of the tourist variety. At least not for as long as he said they were. If I wasn't well on the inside, he was sicker. His struggles were so quiet. No one could have ever known.

I didn't know. I was too busy trying to fix my own goddamned head to see how bad off he was.

I was the strong one after all. I have finally touched what happens to the people you leave behind and it is worse than I imagined it to be. But don't worry about me, I can't stress it enough. I know what's going on but I don't feel it. This is for the best, being like this.

Memories of him are all I breathe now.

I love you, Pooh.

I always will

Sunday, 25 November 2007

Why didn't you just stop coming here?

Zombies rule. So do moments of the utmost clarity when all my hairs stand on end and I feel every last iota of pain. Then zombie comes back. In other words, I'm trying to outrun myself.

The kids are in bed, it's 8 pm. The house is quiet. I took all my pills and changed the bandages on my hand. I spoke with Joel already. PJ called at halftime. Christian took the phone from him and yelled at me gently. Ben offered to come over (again) and I told him to take a break already. He swore softly at me and hung up. Bailey called to tell me her woes and then halfway through stopped abruptly, apologizing. Apparently it's Bridget for the win, for her tragedies trump all.

And it's getting hard not to talk about things here of all places so maybe I will just get on with it and then I can think better.

My hand? I stuck Joel's pen right through it. A self-crucifixion but really an attempt to transfer pain. It was the second time in four days I was too fast for Joel, the first being when they told me Jacob was dead and I took off for Caleb's hotel and now yes, I'm being blackmailed. He won't even give me back my stupid hearing aids and it doesn't matter, because in case you missed it the first time around 38 words ago, Jake is dead.

My fairytale. It's over now. If someone would have ever told my future and told me I'd be a technical widow twice in two years I would have thought what a mean thing to say. And yet here I am.

I appear to not be dead, unfortunately, and nothing should have ended up like this. I wish I were. Truly I do. I'm done writing for the night, maybe tomorrow or the next day I can fill in some of the blanks but for now be assured that this time around nothing has been left to chance with my care and feeding. I can't feel it. I don't feel it. Logically I'm fucking up on purpose in an attempt to feel it. I've gone stir-fucking crazy. Which is better than letting any of it sink in.

And if I do say so myself, I'm succeeding where I have failed.

I warned you. I tried to protect you. I tried to protect me, but none of that really matters anymore.

The best part is they're all so aware of my deafness now that I keep hearing people say I can't believe she's still standing after everything that has happened to her.
Me neither. Though if you look really fucking closely, I'm being held up on strings. And the puppetmaster is my brother in law.

Logic doesn't even enter into it.

Understand that
I will keep you safe from every scar that bleeds,
I will keep you free from all that's hurting me,
This I promise

I promise
One more time, this I swear
Trust in me, my faith is sincere
Love is stronger when the end is near
Then there will be nothing more to fear
I promise
Trust in these, love, life, hands
You need me to help you stand
Somewhere on a snowy stretch of highway between here and the tiny town that lies to the east of us rests my Transgression CD, which I frisbeed out the truck window when this song came on. Henry asked if he could fling one. Ben told him no way, that it was littering and wasteful because in two weeks Mommy will be asking Ben to borrow his copy.

I highly doubt it.

I am done with distractions and would like to stay home more. No one seems to hear that. My freezer is full, I am capable of making breakfast or any other meal that comes along so that the kids get the same good meals they have always gotten. It saves having to bundle up to brave the snow and wind too.

But no. They don't listen to me.

And so I get to keep doing immature, petulant things like pitting Ben and Joel against each other and tossing my entire CD library, one by one. And they keep letting me get away with it. Christ. Joel doesn't know me at all, you know that?

Boy, these drugs are great. I care about nothing. And I can't write worth a damn either.

Saturday, 24 November 2007


I felt as if coming here and having an angry rant would help but I'm smart enough to know better. I'm smart enough not to fight back and smart enough to give up when I can't do anymore. I'm smart enough to hang up, to walk away and close up tight when I've had enough and I'm so wholly conscious of how exposed I am here.

The numbness is starting to leave and being here trying to coordinate friends and not tell them to take a flying leap because I need them here and trying to not feel alone is starting to turn zombiegirl into an angry angry person who is...prone to moments of total and utter helplessness.

I'm not looking forward to this part. This part's going to hurt.

I think it's called a walking coma.

If I were a single man on my way to Toronto with my friends for a weekened of total debauchery, the very last thing I would have done before getting on the plane would be to pull up my friend's miserable online journal to read.

but, yes, that's what he did.

And so Ben turned around and came back and despite threats against his life from the boys because they don't like the guilt implied if he stays and they still go but they had all agreed that they would go in spite of things, because they needed a weekend to be boys and remember why they are all friends.

But no, idiot-boy is here.

I threatened to have him tied up and sent along as cargo but I didn't know who to call to pull that off.

I have had 4 doors slammed in my face since then, mostly due to anger. I didn't tell him she wasn't coming. I am still in it for the win with 6 doors because Ben is not my keeper and he should have gone..and I'm tired of people wanting to know what's going on.

And so, I'll just say nothing. I'll especially not answer the latest round of emails from people who definitely don't know what's going on and are attempting to pass judgement nevertheless. Why? Because they can. Because the internet is like that. You write, people will feel different ways about it. Oh if you only knew.

I'm going to try and make thirty pancakes now. Three for each of us and 21 for Ben who eats more than PJ sometimes.

It keeps me awake. It keeps me busy.

Secretly I'm happy he stayed behind because I...well, nevermind. You won't understand it anyway and I'm too foggy today to explain it properly.

Friday, 23 November 2007

Fire in the hole.

John and Andrew are coming over shortly to teach me the fine art of building a fire, a more extensive version since Jacob showed me the basics of the woodstove but I never paid close enough attention to feel comfortable doing it.

And I didn't tell PJ, Chris and Ben that Bailey isn't coming. They're headed to Toronto this weekend to take in the grey cup with Loch and I know if they knew they wouldn't go so I'm just going to keep a low profile. Joel will be around, and Andrew, and Jason I think. Mark is messed up so I won't be spending much time with him and Robin is home with family so yeah, quiet weekend ahead.

Edit: I doubt I could have stuck more names than I did in one single entry. Suffice it to say it's easier to talk about them than it is to talk about me.


Bailey isn't coming out.

I'll be fine though.

Thursday, 22 November 2007

With feeling.

Jacob's parents left early this afternoon, back to Newfoundland, back to life as they know it. They've aged since they've been here and the cold didn't help. It was -26 this morning and Jacob's dad gave a colorful curse litany that sounded the same way Jake's used to and I've had a lump in my throat ever since.

They don't blame me. No one blames me and yet I blame myself.

Bailey is coming tomorrow to help with me.

How awful does that sound? I can sit here twenty four hours a day, I don't say much or eat much or take up much room. I go where I'm told and do what I'm told to do and otherwise I mostly sit and think and read and sometimes cry and get mad at myself.

I don't even answer the door, everyone knows where the key is.

Every forty eight hours or less Joel appears and hands me my coat and my bag and drives me downtown to my appointments and then comes back and counts pills and checks the pantry and the fridge and the phone messages and runs interference with Sam. PJ comes and cooks a bit and plays with the kids and walks Butterfield and tries to make me laugh. Christian comes with CDs and tickets and movies for us to watch to keep the inanity in our heads. Ben comes and tries to draw me out, taking me for long walks, lunches, talks, albeit one-sided, and an open invitation for any sort of affection I may wish for or need, whenever I'm ready.

That last part has struck a chord that's pissing everyone off and yet it's possibly the greatest gift anyone could have ever given me. Ben knows me so well and sometimes life is a jostling, snarling ball of testosterone in which everyone tries to outmaneuver each other in order to be closer to me. Sometimes I wish they would stop fighting with each other and just be here. Just be with me. That's what he's offering.

I haven't taken him up on it much. He's too busy being angry at me for how I act, for things I have done recently, for choices I have made in moments where I should have given up my power. I could tell him I was sorry but I'm not sure if I am.

They're growing through their own feelings too, here and for the first time they have finally touched first hand what I went through before and now go through once more. They didn't reel, there was no shock, it was more of a moment when they collectively saw that something was indeed too good to be true, too good to last and now they emerge older, smarter, softer and a little less prepared to stand back and watch things happen. It took a lot to get to this point.

When I talk again I'm going to tell them how proud I am of each and every one of them and how much I love them. In the meantime I'll just quietly sit with them and sometimes freak out just a little when the conversations degenerate and they wind up throwing punches at each other in the living room.

Because some things never change.

Wednesday, 21 November 2007

The black and white night.

It's dark out now. All the heavy drapes are closed against the night and against the snowy cold. There are two lights on in the whole house, I believe. The one on the nightstand beside me, and one in the guest room downstairs where Jacob's parents are probably still reading and talking quietly, maybe looking at pictures or listening to the radio too.

The furnace just ticked seven times and came on, sending hot air into every room. I can hear that and my own quiet breathing and the ever-present keyboard clicks as I write and delete and write some more. My phone keeps buzzing across the dresser. I know it's Chris or maybe Ben, sometimes August or Tam wanting to say hello and ask me if I need anything. My boys are so sweet.

An hour ago I was a bit of a quiet lunatic. But instead of caving in to the panic I bit hard on the inside of my cheek and splashed some cold water on my face, took my pills and counted my breathing until I could force my mind off the path to ruin and find a distraction, maybe a bit of a story to start or a few lines of poetry toward a holiday card that I can use later this year.

When a full inhale took ten seconds I checked my head again and found that I had outsmarted it thoroughly. Not only was I no longer panicking but I forgot the great story I had thought of only seconds before.

These pills do that, I think. My short term memory has dissolved to the point where I forget the toothpaste on my brush, I put on one mitten and get outside and wonder where the other went, and Butterfield and I got halfway down the drive this evening before I realized he didn't even have his leash on.

There goes the phone again. That was Christian letting me know he has tickets for a concert in the spring. I am noncommittal, spring is eons away. Winter has just begun. He laughs and tells me to look forward to it. As we are hanging up another call comes through on the house phone and for a moment I am juggling receivers and voices and words with a world-weariness suggesting I am used to the cacophony of keeping tabs. I suppose I am.

I am still counting, still at ten seconds. I have to keep my head busy or the slide begins. I refuse to slide. I refuse to be destroyed and I refuse to be fragile anymore.

The furnace has stopped breathing on us and the house once again settles into discomfortable quietudes. Empty houses are curses on the landscape. A blight signifying a failed family, an abandoned life or the end of a dream.

This house will never be empty because I'm not going to fail, I am not cursed and I don't live in a dreamworld. No illusions mark my ideals, no false pretenses color my intentions any longer.

One of the things Jacob always found amazing about me was when push came to shove and he wasn't around I would stand up for myself and fiercely defend my right to a fair and simple existence free from drama and heartache and bullshit. Like I hid away a magic set of girl-armor under my dress and was as brittle as glass until I was the last one fighting for myself and then I became a tiny force to be reckoned with. He said he never wanted to be on the other end of my sheer force of will, that it was something. That it was devastating.

He was right. It is.

I am.

Think I have my tenses wrong.

No, still going, dammit. No slide, Bridget, no slide.

Out and a doubt.

I expected today to give me something, but I don't understand what I wanted from it. I expected some composure and I let myself down. My hand isn't healing, my heart isn't present, and yet...

I have no questions, really. Maybe that's a good thing. Do I trust that feeling or not?

No idea.

This morning Ben held my hand and watched me. Everyone watched me and I didn't react as much as they expected maybe? I don't. I never do the right thing. He and I still are not speaking but he is there for me. He's mad. He'll get over it.

Right now I feel like you do seconds before the ferris wheel goes back down after going up ever so slowly. I feel like you do in that brief moment of self-doubt before you skydive or spend a whole freaking pile of money you weren't sure you deserved. I feel as if I am poised at the edge of an unfamiliar cliff. I am afraid of heights.

No, maybe it's life. I am afraid of life.

I may be going back for a bit. I'm not all that confident in how together I was coming home in the first place. I mostly faked it, putting out the cold so I could hold my kids but really I'm transparent. They can all see right through me and it's uncomfortable.

Numbly so.

Oh, and Caleb is gone now. He wasn't present this morning, thank god. I was afraid he might but he appears to have figured out where his lines are drawn. I know where they're drawn now too and I never want to see them again.

Tuesday, 20 November 2007


Oh well fuck me then, Ben tells me this journal was never a safe, pretty or comfortable place to read, let alone happy.

That was an aside after a lovely screaming/phone throwing/hang-up-on-each-other-repeatedly conversation in which he finally had the guts to tell me he told me so.

Beware the princess with her head full of words.

Oh and while I think of it, because really, I've been parked here and told to take all the time that I need, which in reality means I can stare out the window all fucking day long if I want to, I'd like to remind readers that this is no longer going to be a safe or comfortable place to read. It's going to be ugly, sad, full of triggers and downright fucking miserable.

Eventually I might even tell you what happened.

But not right now.

Find a happy thing to read. This is not, nor will it ever be it.

I hope some day I will be proven wrong though. You just never know.

If wishes were horses.

I wish everyone would stop asking me questions. I wish everyone would stop gauging my moods by attempting to interpret my facial expressions. I wish I could brush my teeth without thinking through the steps out loud. I wish I could take all this bullshit far away from Ruth and Henry and I wish I could turn back the clock.

I wish everyone would leave. I wish I could write without judgement. I wish I could wake up from this medicated hell. I wish I could have a pair of scissors so I could cut my bangs out of mouth. I wish I could walk for a hundred years until I hit the ocean right now.

I wish I were a happy place but that is no longer the case and sometimes I wish everyone cared less. I was used to people caring less and I made this bed and Jacob burned it down and went away forever and he left me to pick up these pieces and they are too heavy for Bridget and I wished he had kept any of his promises. I can read and read and I don't see where he did.

I wish life was different.

I wish they would all just go. I'm so ungrateful

Monday, 19 November 2007

Wooden puppet.

That is me.

Ben is home now, well, here in the city for good, rather than on the road. That's nice. He stole me away for a late lunch at a hole in the wall Thai place we both like. Pad Thai makes everything better. I was surprised to be out and around like any other person on any other day. Bailey's coming at the end of the week. And Jake's parents are here. They'd like the kids and I to just come back and live with them and fill their house with noise but I think that would hurt too much or maybe it wouldn't hurt at all but how am I supposed to risk everything to find out either way?

I tried to respond to most of your emails but it comes out wooden because it is wooden because I can't feel a thing. That's why I'm responding now, before the feelings come back.

It's okay though. It's a safer place to be right now. Hiding.

Sunday, 18 November 2007


Now I know why Cole bought such a big house. So that it could hold all these people that are here for us, to look after us. It's nice to be home.

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

Fixed signs.

My first instinct was to come in here and tear down yesterday's histrionics but instead I think I'm just going to leave them there, so I can try to keep a better handle on when the bad times are coming and somehow head them off. Suppertime alone with the kids is usually hard, but last night they chattered about their days and their new library books and we made plans to go to the big library this weekend and I managed to hold everything together pretty good considering.

I didn't want to get up today but my best chance is to just keep on going with routines and one heavy foot in front of the other with the effort of a mighty warrior. Ha. There's a vision. This five foot nothing wisp of blonde is anything but a warrior these days. Maybe someday though!

Birthdays are sacred moments in time to Jacob, I hope he has found a way to mark his 37th in a way that gives it meaning. I just wish I could have shared it too.

Tuesday, 6 November 2007

Show me how defenseless you really are.

I have no one to talk to.

Love by default.

    Looking for some hope
    Polished off the whiskey tonight
    You turned a man to stone
    For looking at you straight in the eyes

    So I'll drive away with all my things
    Though I've a faint belief in everything

    I wished your love away

I suppose that it would be too much to ask that the universe align tomorrow and send Jacob home for his birthday? I baked a cake this morning. If he doesn't come home I'll give it to the neighbors. If he does we can have a food fight because I'd probably throw it at him at this point.

Today is a day of petty frustrations. The zipper on my waterproof winter coat (the warm one) broke. My awesome new hikers? Worn copiously without breaking them in and lightweight, not so much. My feet hurt and I'm back to my oldest running shoes. Butterfield got the shortest walk in the world earlier as a result and I limped home from the school this morning. I won't be running for a couple of days but I don't feel like it anyway. The endorphins seem just out of my reach, I don't stretch enough, I don't get warm enough and Joel, my only running buddy now, is indulging in mutual annoyance with me. We don't get along. He overstepped and he doesn't get it and neither do I but I'm not the world's best limit-setter so I have to push him away.

Ben isn't faring much better.

He sat at the table last night singing along with Cary Brothers on the stereo after the kids went to bed while we sipped tea and didn't even talk, just sitting and listening. He put up all the storm windows in the piano windows on the south side of the house that I always forget about. He reminded me to eat a little more and to call him if I need anything, and that after next week he's back in town for good and on four-day weeks for the rest of the year so he can be handy. I didn't say much. Then he started getting his stuff together to go back to the hotel and finally he asked if I wanted him to stay.

I told him no, that I was fine, that it was a bad idea and for the sake of my sanity never to offer something like that again.

He left and once again we weren't on speaking terms but he called this morning from the airport and told me to call him, that he'd be back for a day at the end of the week and again, he loves me. I told him I loved him too. We always say that. We're close enough to say it and not have it bear the kind of weight that it should.

Sometimes that's half the problem. By default I dilute my love and spread it around, trying to give everyone attention and a place in my life and sometimes lines that seem so clear to me are not to everyone else. Sometimes I get caught up and distracted, sometimes I get thrown off my position and can't figure out where the lines are anymore. And Jacob left because I didn't erase all those lines for his benefit.

Oh, and sometimes too I just pick the most temperamental/flightiest/biggest longshots in the world to fall in love with. Which means Jacob left because he always planned to and he held on long enough to make sure we were okay. Sometimes I pick the sweet ones who don't have a clue the kind of hurt they can cause.

I need to not do that anymore. Both things.

Monday, 5 November 2007

Songs that aren't safe to hear.

    Look for the girl with the broken smile
    Ask her if she wants to stay awhile
    And she will be loved

The beauty of the small moments, stolen a few at a time or rarely, as an unexpected delight do and will outnumber the long stretches of misery. The joy on Henry's face as he ventures out into the First Official Snowstorm of the season, Ruth's thrill of having her friends call out her name and run to the fence as we arrive at school. The feeling of my dead heart lurching when Ben turned and smiled at me on the doorstep with the promise of a day of company, a surprise I wasn't expecting until Thursday. The tentative long term plans for Bridget, talked about for the first time in terms of reality, no longer pipe dreams, for I need to make decisions now.

I have a forced freedom now. I'm responsible for me and not beholden to anyone's good graces. I'm in charge of the direction I run in, I'm spinning the compass with abandon. I'm coming to terms incredibly slowly with the fact that Jacob doesn't want me anymore. I have ideas, all of which I have to turn over in my head and savor for a while before acting on, all of which have the potential to make life worth living again someday, or at the very least, endurable.

When thrust into the position I am in now, I don't think about checking out, I only think about building strength. I think about living in survival-mode until it becomes easier, helped along the way by these tiny moments, and choking off the air to negative thoughts when my brain begins to wonder if Jacob is seeing snow today too, or if he thinks about me. There isn't any point to destructive thoughts anymore, the worst happened and I wound up alone.

Alone and yet I'm not alone, navigating my day just fine, with my head pounding and my eyes burning, dark circles and a growling belly from ignoring two thirds of every meal, hands shaking from ten cups of coffee so far today and a mosaic heart. I wrapped my long scarf four times around my neck and headed down the road paved with broken promises. I know it leads somewhere. Every road has to.

It doesn't seem to have a Dead End sign. I looked.

Ben and his dumb jokes aside.

Therapy this morning. The hardcore stuff. Good. I didn't wake up in a good place, I woke up on the other side of hell and if the shock is going to wear off now, I'm not in any condition to deal with anything.

And Butterfield has done nothing but sit by the back door twenty-four hours a day on high alert waiting for his master to come home. I know how he feels.

I can't do this.

Sunday, 4 November 2007

You thought I was impossible

I don't doubt you can make it on your own, nor am I being noble.

Oh really? What would you call it then?

I'm an opportunist and a predictable pervert, that's all.

And honest to a fault, I see.

Hey, why hide it? I'd love to take you for a spin around my bed.

It's a little soon to be laying it on this thick, Benjamin.

People have called me that too, princess.

In what context?

Any context you can think of, schweetheart.

My God, you're hilarious.

And hopefully first in line this time.

Oh, Benny, that is so not funny right now.

I know. Can I make it up to you?

I think you did already. I love the Rover.

Oh, I meant to let you know, I can still give cash rebates if you put out.

Okay, I have to go now and you have to stop it.

Is that a no?

Goodnight, Ben.

Goodnight, Bridge. I'm really sorry. I just can't help it.

Yeah, I see that. It's okay, really. You make me laugh.

I knew I was good for something.

No, you're good for nothing.

No, I'm just good.

Goodbye, Ben.

Bye, princess.

Hang up now.

Okay, okay.

Leafs trump Habs 3-2

We didn't go to church today. I'm just not ready to go back. I don't know if I'll ever be ready to go back, for the social as well as the spiritual aspects. I might consider scoping out the United church a few streets over, they have a good-sounding Sunday school program and it would remove the gossip angels from at least one aspect of my life.

Joel is not impressed with me and I missed the winning shot in the game last night while I argued with him on the phone. He doesn't believe that it's fair to relay his actions online, especially when I didn't give up the identities of the other two men who made similar offers. I pointed out he should not be ashamed of his generosity or courageousness in offering, and besides, I don't hold anyone to that sort of impulsiveness anyway. I have let him off the hook for what was a sweet but reactive gesture.

Oh and it was Ben (no surprise) and Christian (huge surprise).

I've had four hang-ups on my cellphone in the past six days. I really don't know if it was Jake or a random error. He didn't take all kinds of things. He took his hockey bag with some warm clothes and all of his journals and really everything else is here. He left his corduroy jacket. I have slept in it every night. He left his running clothes and his climbing gear. For all intents and purposes it appears as if he is coming back but I know he isn't. I can't explain it any more than to tell you the letter spells it out quite clearly, so as not to raise my hopes that he might.

We're going to have a quiet, warm day at home. I did laundry, I finished all the mending, and I put all the lawn tools in the basement and brought up all the shovels. I want to do a few chores and then maybe spin a little wool and watch a movie with the kids and go to bed early again. Sleeping kills the time just beautifully.

Jacob's 37th birthday is this week. And this is fucking hard.

Saturday, 3 November 2007

Strange days.

    Good morning
    Don't cop out
    You crawled from the cancer to land on your feet

Today has been a rather strange day. Some good things, some bad things, and new boots. I'm about to begin to make dinner, which involves hot chicken sandwiches and peas and gravy. The hockey game starts in a little under two hours, and did I mention I have new boots?

Hard parts of the day included therapy (finding out who the kids truly trust and distrust was difficult), talking to Loch (for the first time since the end of August, boy was that fun) to find out about Keira (who has three weeks to go and is on bedrest), talking to Erin to find out about Jacob (who has Officially Left The Country, even less fun than talking to Loch), talking to Ben (who is fun! and who is coming home at the end of the week for a day and wants to be with us), talking to my father (who doesn't seem to care much as long as I don't embarrass him by going back to the private hospital), talking to Joel (who proposed) and talking to myself a lot to keep from crying.

Did I mention I also bought new boots? Waterproof city hiking boots. Lightweight boots for 'lightweight' hikers, we used to call them, perfect boots for running back and forth to the school when it's -40 because Sorels are lovely and all and durable but they suck to walk in, day in and day out. I'll spend the next eight months in winter boots, I may as well be comfortable. To offset the utilitarian appearance of the hikers (a boy's size 4, no less) I also bought a pair of black knee-high suede platforms with little pompoms that are exactly as impractical as you would imagine. They're cute though. Cute seems to work for me.

Which brings me back to Joel, who didn't surprise me at all, especially since he was the third male friend to propose this week. They have no faith in me being able to handle life all on my own. God love them, it isn't their choice to make. And aside from being rash and impulsive, it's rash and impulsive, so no. Bridget goes it alone.

With her awesome new boots and a tight grip on the virtues she has left. No, not virtues, brain cells, sanity, positive thoughts, whatever. I still have it.

Friday, 2 November 2007

To my dear friends who read and love and worry: I'm sorry. Every day you come and almost every day I come in here and dump out my negative emotions, leaving you with a bad taste but at this point you feel some sort of kinship or obligation even to stick with it to see it through. Or maybe you can appreciate your blessings at my expense, and feel sorry for me. Either way I won't be posting sadness and bitterness forever and I appreciate you hanging in there. It means the world to have company in the dark. No one likes to be alone and I also look forward to the day when happiness outweighs the misery and I hope you're still around to celebrate it with me.

All my positive strengths right now are being funneled into the kids. They will get all of it before anyone else and that's why I'm struggling here and with the boys so. Overall, I honestly can't believe how well I'm doing. Whenever I thought of not being married to Jacob before, my knees would crumble. Maybe I was strong after all. In any case it's a real lovely distraction from my mental problems. Perhaps Jacob was right.

And one final aside, to those emailing me to tell me men suck? They don't suck. People suck, I'm not going to single out half the population. I have a son who will someday be a man and all my friends are male and I've fallen in love enough to know that men can be wonderful. If you're going to comment on someone's behavior, leave it at their behavior and don't lump everyone else in. I believe in people and sometimes even the best people will let you down spectacularly.

Have a nice weekend. I will be posting, as usual.

Thursday, 1 November 2007

Cold hard light.

It's Thursday and I can't work so I'm stalling. I can't think. I can't play music and so I can't write.

I've been on the phone all afternoon apologizing to the boys, one by one, for the screaming, the silence, the stubbornness, and the snot and tears I have oozed into their collars and their arms. I apologized for being such a fucking bitch and for driving yet another of their friends out of our lives.

Bless their hearts, they refused to accept my offers on the basis that I am to react however the hell I please and they can take it. Because no one else could and I keep picking the ones who snap.

Most were gruff and offered me whatever I need, whenever I need it even though they know they'll get stuck with middle of the night phone calls and weird requests to do things like come and clean the drain gutter over the kitchen window so it doesn't pour out the middle from that glut of leaves stuck up there.

Joel told me that sometimes when under extreme stress people break, and that Jacob must be confused and overwhelmed and his soothing talk read like a page from the letter Jacob left for me and I agreed before pointing out that what makes me so angry is that he dropped everything to help me, why wouldn't he let me help him? Why leave without a goodbye? Why not stay and fight for this?

Joel said simply that Jacob never looked at me as an equal but only as a precious gift that he no longer feels he deserves.

I asked Joel very slowly how Jacob was doing. Joel said he didn't know, that he got a letter from him asking for help with me and nothing about the future. Just a brief explanation with no answers.

He offered to show me but I don't need to see it. I have one just like it. Only it doesn't say take care of yourself, it says I will always love you.

He's not coming back for me. It's time to face reality.

Frost in the dark.

It's been a week and it feels like a year. I keep reading the letter he wrote to me, the finality of his thoughts on paper, the sureness with which he gave up everything. Insisting it wasn't me that drove him away but something deep within himself.

Do I believe that?


I wish he'd come back so I could be with him and I wish he'd come back so that I can scream at him.

Instead, I opted this morning to leave Chris to his coffee and the internet while I took a run with Joel and we bickered all the way to the river and back. Joel doesn't like the safeguards I have in place, he doesn't approve of the network of friends expected to fill in and watch for leaks in the dam, he doesn't think it's fair for that pressure to be on them, or safe for me to be alone with the kids so much while waiting to panic when the rage runs dry.

He thinks I should have Bailey come and watch the kids while I check myself back into the little posh facility where they whisper and where famous people go to get their heads on straight. A place where people looked at me in the hall and tried to figure out exactly who I was, if I was anyone at all.

Obviously I am no one. With not even enough value to make Cole not want to share me or to make Jacob stick around for more than eighteen months.

I told Joel to go fuck himself and I turned and ran back in the dark through the city and refused to acknowledge that he ran thirty feet behind me the whole way back to my door.