DECEMBER 22, 2020: “The Last One Alive” …

Better you’re the last one alive, than a soul denied.

Level up TODAY people.

LEVEL UP!

… because the more you suffer in training, the greater your victory on the battlefield of your life! This is where you’ll find the only hope within this place “where angels fall, and darkness reigns, and time dissolves the brightest flame“. COMMAND YOUR OWN DESTINY MY FRIENDS — WITH THE MOST POWERFUL WEAPON YOU POSSESS — YOUR MIND! Don’t cower to the devil, or the masses, or yourself. Just sayin’.

Yours truly … “Commander Cat”

DECEMBER 21, 2020: “The Bitter End” …

THIS IS ME.

Contemplating … everything behind me, and everything ahead … but mostly … EVERYTHING IN THIS MOMENT! No matter what I’ve ever been through or have waiting down the road, I’m STILL the luckiest queen I’ve ever known. Win, lose or draw, my heart is wide open to any and every possibility, with a battalion of angels and the God they serve working behind my scene 25 hours a day, all of whom follow my every step and guide my path with a Light I can’t even. But this much I know …

… somehow we’ll be alright!

(And by the way? That includes YOU!)

THE BITTER END

I’ve walked every road and turned every corner. Searched high and low where I did not belong. Adrift with the tide – always hungry and yearning. If only I’d known that the answer was here all along. The bitter end will come in time. But the joy I have found in the sweet here and now? It keeps me alive I’ve kissed the lips. Of an angel in waiting. Devil in kind. I’ve been lost and deceived. The thrill had to fade in this world for the taking. Once I woke up to what mattered, then I could see. The bitter end will come in time. But the joy I have found in the sweet here and now? It keeps me alive. We’re lost on a road where all we can find are just the remnants of hope that somehow we leave far behind. But this much I know … somehow we’ll be alright. ‘Cause It’s never too late to learn how to start living right. Starting right now, I’ll stop falling down and start living right. {Alter Bridge}

DECEMBER 20, 2020: “Alone. Not lonely.” …

YOU’RE NOT ALONE TONIGHT

We all drink to forget – some of us more than most. When reality gets too real and the fires of hell to close. But I’m here to let you know that that you can make it through, if you believe that someone is watchin’ over you. Call it an angel. Call it a muse. Call it karma that you’ve got comin’ to you. What’s the difference? What’s in a name? What matters most is never ever losin’ faith. ‘Cause it’s gonna be alright … you’re not alone tonight. We all have our days when nothing goes as planned. Not a soul in the world seems to understand. And for someone to talk to, you’d give anything. Well go on and cry out loud – ’cause someone’s listenin’. Call it an angel. Call it a muse. Call it karma that you’ve got comin’ to you. What’s the difference? What’s in a name? What matters most is never ever losin’ faith. ‘Cause it’s gonna be alright … you’re not alone tonight. {Keith Urban}

DECEMBER 19, 2020: “I’m Gonna Love You” …

James kisses Margaret before he comes to see us. James kisses Margaret before he does pretty much anything.

{The Daily James}

Dear God:

Earlier today I got my saw this video on my Instagram feed, which I’m sure You already knew. Knowing my heart the way You do, You also already knew how taken I was, once again, by the way James literally bows to that Queen he loves so desperately, yet at the same time, no matter how high he places her above himself, he is only ever right beside her. As You and I both know, and as I finally got to learn in the most ethereal way, when a king loves a queen love so deep and so true that each of their hearts but serve the other, the balance of power is never a struggle and there is no “servitude” whatsoever.

As we have already discussed, You know that I know that I trust You implicitly. You and he both made me a queen, and there is no going back to where I came from. I will not and cannot settle for anything less than everything where another partner on this journey is concerned, and I’d rather reign here “alone, but not lonely” if that’s what Your plan shall be. That being said, if indeed there “one last king on Earth” You have waiting for me somewhere, can I please just ask that he really be a king. Like You. Like Zack. LIKE KING JAMES THE RAVEN …

THE RULER OF QUEEN MARGARET’S HEART!

It’s an impossible order, but hey, look Who I am talking to! I’ve had two kings before, and three is the perfect number, so maybe, just maybe, we shall see. In the meantime, I will just have to wait for the moments like these when the image of two love birds washes over me. “Just a chill in a winter breeze, standing in the cold debris that left behind so many beautiful memories.” Like every word that has left Your lips, and those of my beautiful husband, there are fingerprints everywhere to evidence the love that has committed me right back to “here”. I really do only want to be remembered for being that one who will always ever say “I’m gonna love you … I’m gonna love you endlessly” to that one last king who may be waiting to fly the remainder of my heart into eternity.

James almost always positions his head right below Margaret.

{The Daily James}

I’M GONNA LOVE YOU

Something still comes over me. Just a chill in a winter breeze. Standing in the cold debris left behind a memory. Every word that left your lips left behind your fingerprints. Every crime that love commits brings you right back here to this. I only want to be remembered for being the one who’d always say that I’m gonna love you … I’m gonna love you endlessly. I’ll never be one to yell surrender as long as you’re standing next to me. ‘Cause I’m gonna love you. I’m gonna love you endlessly. No escaping this embrace every time I see your face. Around the love I can’t erase. Wouldn’t want to anyway. I only want to be remembered for being the one who’d always say that I’m gonna love you … I’m gonna love you endlessly. {David Cook}

If you are interested in supporting the causes closest to “The King & Queen’s” hearts:

<<<CLICK HERE>>>

DECEMBER 18, 2020: “128,000 Ripples” …

“128,000 RIPPLES AND COUNTING”

It’s been 498 days since Fate started spinning the wheel for our family and 484 days since the king fell off his throne, yet here I am STANDING STRONG with this tiara on my head, but more so than that …

I’M MAKING WAVES!

SO CAN YOU!

PLEASE! If you are reading this and have also been to HELL and back and are still alive to to tell about it … TELL ABOUT IT! Don’t let YOUR own “Survival Resume” have been in vain. You just never know who’s listening and watching or how far your ripples will reach into the ocean! LET YOUR OWN SURVIVAL STORY BE THE REASON SOMEONE ELSE MAKES THE DECISION TO FIGHT FOR THEMSELVES AND STICK AROUND!

DECEMBER 17, 2020: “Yummy Things With Eyeballs” …

… because nothing that is given from her head, heart or hands isn’t just that – given from her head, heart and hands. The funny thing about these “yummies” she made for a very lucky few of us is that they aren’t actually the gift. You’d have to be fortunate enough to get to bask in the glow of her halo to understand what I’m saying. Oh, and, in case I forgot to tell you again

I AM THE LUCKIEST WOMAN ALIVE ON THE FACE OF THIS PLANET!

DECEMBER 16, 2020: “Once … In A Lifetime” …

“The Window”

As promised in this previously recorded live video and in a text to a friend last night …

I totally just walked back into Lifetime and reinstated my membership. Didn’t crumble. Didn’t cry. Didn’t fall apart. It just feels like I’m home. It’s totally supposed to be this way. This is a giant leap! And it was Gia’s final decision – not mine. “Mom, dad wouldn’t want us working out anywhere else. It would wreck him. Besides, queens don’t work out at 24-hour fitness!”

Well, I DID IT! I walked back in to the very place the best decade of our lives began, straightened up my crown, held my head high, and took back that one last piece of my life I was certain I’d have to forsake as I started crossing over. I even stood before the window, and nope, I didn’t cry. I just remembered everything. ALL OF IT!Every day” we got to have him for the most beautiful season of our lives. And by the way, that chair you see to the left of the computer is the very one I was sitting in when our first meaningful conversation began. You know? The one that started our entire story with the shot heard round the world: Ummm, do you even OWN a hairbrush?” Yes, my friends, I’m smiling ear to ear as I’m literally hearing him say it!

So, now I’ll remix the words to this all too fitting song in a manner that the KING who loved this broken queen back to life and turned the four year old girl who bounced into his heart into a princess would have spoken them, if, as I suspect, he watched me powering through one of the most monumental moments of my “lifetime” …

I can see it in your eyes – and I’ve felt it in your touch. I know that you’re scared, but you’ve never been this loved. It’s a long shot, baby, I know it’s true, but if anyone can make it, I’m betting on the two of you. Just keep on moving towards the Sun. I know you’re gonna to see – the best is yet to come. Don’t don’t fear it now. You’re going all the way. That Sun is shining on a brand new day. It’s a long way down, and it’s a leap of faith, but you’re never giving up. ‘Cause you’ve had a once in a lifetime love. Everybody’s looking for what we found. Some wait their whole life and it never comes around. So don’t hold back now. Just let go of all you’ve ever known. You can put your hand in His. Don’t fear it now. You’re going all the way. That Sun is shining on a brand new day. I closed my eyes and I saw you standing right there, saying I do and they’re throwing the rice in our hair. Well your first was born, then his a sister came along, and they’ve got your smile. I’ve been looking back on the life we had. I’m still by your side. So don’t fear it now. You’re going all the way! I’ll never let you go … I’ll be right by your side … just know I’ve made it Home … and thanked God for our …

ONCE … In A Lifetime Love!

To Read The “Rocky IV” Post Referenced In The Video, Click HERE.

DECEMBER 15, 2020: “The Selfish Parent Serenade” …

… ummmm,

YES IT DOES!

Listen up my parent friends, and listen up real good! We only get eighteen years with ’em! Actually, make that sixteen once they get driver’s licenses and become mobile. WE brought them into this world of our own volition, NOT THEIRS! None of them signed up for this gig – WE DID! Our kids shouldn’t have to sacrifice so that WE can have the lives we want. WE should make the sacrifices so that our KIDS can have the lives they DESERVE! There is nothing that should ever come between us and them …

Not a job!

Not a dream!

Not a hobby!

Not an education!

NOT EVEN “THE LOVE OF OUR LIFE”!

Anyone, and I mean ANYONE, who tries to put YOU between them and YOUR children? Thaaat would be a deal-breaker my friends, and that is not “the love of your life”!

Honey, I love you, but it’s me or them …

… to which your response is …

WELL THEN DON’T LET THE DOOR HIT YOU IN THE ASS!

Does that mean that we aren’t entitled to have those things? The jobs, dreams, hobbies, educations, AND the loves of our lives? OF COURSE IT DOESN’T! But here’s the deal … KIDS FIRST! US LAST! Period. End of story! The years with them home will be over before we know it and then it’s OUR time to fly! The sky’s the limit people, but not at the expense of the wings we clip, mangle, twist and BURN when we’re more worried about our wings then theirs.

FAILURE TO FLY.

I may not be doctor, but I’m willing to bet that more “failed flights” than not are due in part to selfish parents who failed to make their kids a priority. Sorry, “not sorry” if that truth is hard to hear, but the truth does hurt, does it not? Let’s not be stupid and squander the fleeting time we have with them at home. More so than that, let’s not be “those parents” that the parents who do sacrifice to put their kids first talk badly about behind our backs. WORST OF ALL, let’s not be “those parents” whose KIDS will be talking about to their kids one day, telling them all the things we did or didn’t do, and how our selfish parenting landed them in therapy and medicated because we shattered their fragile hearts like glass!

Not to be sanctimonious, but there are certain crimes against humanity that are deserving of such flagrant disapproval and reproach. ASSHOLE PARENTS ARE ONE OF THEM! For the record, I too have been guilty of some not so stellar, very selfish parenting. I’m not EVEN gonna sit here and lie! But guess what? I grew up, opened my eyes, and took a sobering look at the wreckage I’d gifted to the undeserving kids I allowed to become casualties of both “my war within” and my “war abroad. After breaking apart for a not so hot minute or two, I looked into the mirror at the little girl who knew exactly what it felt like to be “at the expense of an unavailable parent”. My guilty conscience took care of the rest. I sat down with my both my kids at different times and stages appropriate to their age and understanding and had the hardest and most awkward conversations of my life:

Kids, I’m sorry, but MOMMY TOTALLY FUCKED YOU OVER! Let me tell you how …

At which point I owned it all, accounted for everything, APOLOGIZED, then vowed to start doing better! Never again will my kids be second to anything or anyone … NOT EVEN MY OWN DAMN SELF!

This song is probably one of the best “selfish parent serenades” I’ve ever heard. Digest the words and let them sink in. If you’ve ever been guilty of misappropriating the precious gift of parenthood, it may just twist you up inside the same way it twisted me the first time I heard it. That being the case, just stop what you’re doing, talk to your kids, validate their wounds AND FIX IT! “But in the end we were made to be apart in separate chambers of the human heart.” Is that the legacy you want to leave behind? Certainly not. But children grow up and become adults, many of who end up spending so much time in therapy trying to fix the damage we caused that they have no choice but to keep us in “separate chambers of the heart”. They learn about boundaries and “loving from afar” to either protect themselves from us, break the cycle, or both, and thus the bridge is burned.

For the record, no matter what seemingly unforgiveable parenting mistakes you’ve made along the way, and no matter how old your children are, it’s never too late to own it, account for it, apologize, and do better! As long as you’re breathing and they are too? JUST FIX IT!

BURNING IN THE SKIES

I use the dead wood to make the fire rise. The blood of innocence burning in the skies. I filled my cup with the rising of the sea, and poured it out in an ocean of debris. Ooh, I’m swimming in the smoke of bridges I have burned. So don’t apologize – I’m losing what I don’t deserve. What I don’t deserve. We held our breathe when the clouds began to form, but you were lost in the beating of the storm. But in the end we were made to be apart in separate chambers of the human heart. Ooh, I’m swimming in the smoke of bridges I have burned. So don’t apologize – I’m losing what I don’t deserve. It’s in the blackened bones of bridges I have burned. The blame is mine alone for bridges I have burned. So don’t apologize – I’m losing what I don’t deserve. What I don’t deserve. {Linkin’ Park}

DECEMBER 14, 2020: “Give Him Roots” …

The “Tell Us What You See” Tree {Courtesy Of The Daily James}

This morning I saw this post on my Instagram page by one of my favorite haunts, “The Daily James“, a Los Angeles based wildlife sanctuary that is home to one of my absolute favorite families, “King James, Margaret and the kids“. But I’ve digressed. The post was of this picture above along with one very simple question:

Tell us what you see.

To which I replied …

The thing that struck me the most in this post was the first picture of that magnificent tree. It screamed, “Look here upon my branches – Creation’s true majesty. I am a life well lived, no matter the circumstances or elements that have encumbered me – a true force to be reckoned with. I am ONLY as tall as my roots are deep, no matter HOW twisted and chaotic they may be seem. I am a strong fortress. I am – everything.”

Today is my son’s birthday. Twenty-eight years ago, after nineteen hours and eleven minutes of labor, he was born at exactly 4:50pm! With that, this picture couldn’t have come at a more befitting time, because after I made my response, I immediately thought of this song I’ve loved since first hearing it in the early ’90’s when I just beginning to know Jesus. Up until then, I had been wandering lost in the woods all alone. Actually? Correction: I wasn’t really alone – He was ALWAYS with me, I just wasn’t ready to believe it. Truth be told, even after I accepted Christ into my heart, my walk was a bit of a struggle. I’ve been a really stubborn kid – NO JOKE! Christian was so young at the time, and I tried desperately to give him the solid foundation he needed to get through life. But alas, I failed him at so many turns. It’s the absolute, tragic truth.

Those days are gone though, and now I know better. I truly have seen the error of my ways, not the least of which is the not-so-stable ground I set his feet upon and the wings I helped clip that have made it more difficult for him to fly. Just as sure as God has forgiven me for my many imperfections and failures, I too have done the same. All I can do at this point is try to lead him to The Truth by my example and let His Majesty take it from there. My son is a true force to be reckoned with, just like his mom and sister! It’s just a matter of time … and only a matter of faith. At the end of the day, no matter how “twisted and chaotic” his roots are below, there is a strong fortress working behind him powering the circumstances and elements. The great “I Am” is everything I need to know.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHRISTIAN PETER! I love you to the Moon and back and am SO proud to be your mom. I believe in you, always, unconditionally, with every shred of my being, from here until eternity!

GIVE HIM ROOTS

So many voices in his ear. Are they playing on his fears? It’s a bad situation all the way around. But with a solid foundation, he’s gonna stand his ground. Take a little time. Plant the seeds. Give him reasons to believe. Give him roots, and give him wings, and he’ll grow up to do great things. Let him know the joy that he brings. Teach him the value of the truth. Oh you gotta give him roots. Give him wings. When he comes to you and he needs your help, and he’s so unsure of himself, give him vision so he can see the Light. Let him know the difference between wrong and right. Share the wisdom of your peers. There’ll be laughter. There’ll be tears. He should aim as high as the sky. There ain’t nothing he can’t do if he’ll only try. {Clay Crosse}

DECEMBER 13, 2020: “Castle Of Glass” …

… because sometimes all I have is the words to someone’s else’s song …

“Castle Of Glass”

Take me down to the river bend. Take me down to the fighting end. Wash the poison from off my skin. Show me how to be whole again. Fly me up on a silver wing. Past the black where the sirens sing. Warm me up in a nova’s glow and drop me down to the dream below. ‘Cause I’m only a crack in this castle of glass. Hardly anything there for you to see. Bring me home in a blinding dream Through the secrets that I have seen. Wash the sorrow from off my skin and show me how to be whole again. ‘Cause I’m only a crack in this castle of glass. Hardly anything there for you to see.

~ Linkin’ Park

DECEMBER 12, 2020: “Never Cross A Crow” …

In case you haven’t figured it out by now, I live in a very special place inside my own head, and it’s really not so bad! What you see is what you get with me – I’m the happiest “sad person” I think I’ve ever met. Glass half full people. GLASS HALF FULL!

If you’ve been keeping up with this Diary or any of my whacky videos videos, you’ve probably heard me say I’m the “luckiest person” I think I’ve ever met. I love my life – the good, the bad, and the ugly, and am thankful for EVERY day I get to be alive! No matter what broken roads I’ve traveled, and no matter how much I miss my fallen king, I know he’s smiling down on me right now watching me survive with joy, and love, and light. He wouldn’t have wanted it ANY other way, and his heart would be broken even more than it was in the first place if he couldn’t look down and see me still “being me” – a very happy Cat!

Keep the faith my friends! If you’re struggling in any way, shape or form? Just breathe … and be silly … and laugh a little (especially at yourself). IT’S OKAY TO DO THAT – even if your “grieving”. Much love to all of you today. And remember …

NEVER CROSS A CROW!

DECEMBER 11, 2020: “One Heart” …

… that moment you get a surprise in the mail from literally out of the blue from a dear friend of years, with not only a precious gift but these sweet words as well:

Watching your love story grow was beautiful. Watching how you honor your husband today is beautiful. Under the surface, I am sure you have experienced a roller coaster of emotion. But you carry on with such grace and strength. Even though I never had the privilege of meeting your husband, I hope this ornament can serve as a small piece to honor him at Christmas. May God bless and keep your family safe during this holiday season.

Of all the things that could possibly reduce me, of all people, “the Cat who never seems to shut up”, to speechless tears? A random act of kindness! And with that, I’m yet again reminded of how blessed I am. I too wish she could have met him. I wish all of you could have met him (the him he was before he got sick). He was a force to be reckoned with, the changer of my game, and the king of my heart. This ornament is so special to me that it will now adorn a lamp in my kitchen year-round. It will serve as a loving, daily reminder of not just him and every bittersweet and beautiful piece of this journey, but most importantly that in all things big and small, God is “turning and turning” this thing with the One Heart that brings hearts like hers close to mine!

ONE HEART

There’s a new church on the horizon, made of light, not of stone. Calling out to all Creation – you are not alone, no, no, no. Lions and lambs. Saints and sinners. Best of friends. Enemies. Woman and man. Losers and winners. They are all in you and me. We are one heart looking for answers. One soul finding our way in the dark. One dream we share together. We are all a part of one heart. Out in the cold, ooh, there are faces hidden by, the wind and rain. Hold out your hand – someone will take it. They’re gonna bring you home again. Around the Earth tonight the fires are burning. Tears are falling from the sky. Still the world keeps turning … turning and turning and turning. {Clay Crosse}

DECEMBER 10, 2020: “I’ll Carry Them” …

Dear Mom …

Could any two words in the history of written language EVER melt a heart so quickly as they do mine? OH but the irony here! In case you haven’t figured it out by now, I’m a very sentimental person. It’s all those little things in my life, like the sticks, the rocks, the dried up flowers, and love notes from my people that mean literally “everything” to me … and yes, to the best of my ability … I KEEP THEM ALL! I’ve had this love note from Gia to me and Zack resting on the typing stand on my desk since literally the day I found it waiting on my keyboard to be found as a surprise and read, “November 29, 2014”. The other one, however, I only recently found when I was shuffling through a stack of papers that were inside my desk that I wasn’t quite sure what to do with. You know the stack? “Toss it, or keep it? Hmmmm. I’ll just keep it and deal with it later!” Meanwhile, years later, and ya FINALLY start going through it all!

The love note from Christian (Circa 2008″, age 16) was also left as a surprise for me to find on the keyboard of my computer when I was still living at His house with all of them. Sadly, it wasn’t too long afterwards that I’d made my final departure once and for all. And by the way, how completely crazy is it that both their notes were done in either the same or a very similar font? For the record, I chose today to publish this post because it’s “midway” between November 29th and December 18th. I just split the difference and landed here!

I’m not gonna lie, when I found Christian’s note it tore me up pretty good, but not in the traditional “torn up” way. It was good. Bittersweet tears flowing from my eyes at just the right time and space. It’s these precious little bits of “everything” from days gone by that remind me that although I’ve definitely had my fare share of screw ups and not-so-stellar mom moments, at the end of the day, this is what I’ve been fighting for. I carry them while they carry me forward as a Light Into The Dark.

In being honest, these love notes from my kids do also make me a little sad. That beautiful king who gave us absolutely everything never had this as a child, and that’s what eventually broke him. She broke him into pieces and he’s gone. Luckily, however, I can let him rest in peace knowing that he did finally have a home and “everything” to carry him through the season we were lucky enough to have him.

DECEMBER 9, 2020: “When Angels Fly Away” …

I promise I’m not bragging, but then again, I AM! The guy on the left? He’s one of the best men on my paternal family tree, my cousin, and our Grandfather’s namesake, Brigadier General Ernest Audino, US Army (Ret). This man has devoted his entire life to the betterment of not just his American brethren, but his Kurdish brethren as well. He’s a pretty big ordeal, and someone to be honored to know, much less share blood with. The guy on the right? He’s “The Lion Of Handrin”, and I posted my cousin’s own words to pay him homage. He TOO is a pretty big ordeal and the story of his accomplishments and survival are beyond!

I am so damn proud of this man, as are both of my kids. We talk about him to anyone who will listen as often as we can, and are always grateful for his endless service to this country that is often neither appreciated nor recognized. Ironically, I thought of him yesterday when out of the blue, one of the most beautiful and thoughtful ballads I’ve ever heard cued onto my stereo. This song always brings a tear to my eye and a knot to my stomach when I sit with and absorb it, and try to conceptualize how in the actual HELL it would feel to be the angel having to say these words inside his own head after having had to watch so many other angels fly away. It’s literally mind-numbing to think about. I have long thought that every American teenager should have to listen to it at least once so that perhaps they might really get a better understanding of what countless others have had to go through so they could be “free” to sit and listen to it in the first place. Honestly? There are a fair amount of adults that could stand to spend some time with this song as well, so that they too might better appreciate “the angels flying away of it all” the next time they dare think about complaining about this beautiful nation that we live in. At the end of the day, I’m just so grateful to all the men and women in my family that stood up for me this way. There are a handful of American soldiers on my maternal family tree as well, one of whom actually split his time between the Army and the Navy. Now that’s something! The military life is clearly not for everyone, and not every man or woman is cut from that cloth.

Meanwhile, having this song avail itself to my magical music wheel yesterday and thus remind me of how much I love it, just so happened to coincide with one of my favorite hero’s birthday! So, with that …

HAPPY BIRTHDAY GENERAL!

I love you, am prouder of you than all my endless words could say … and by the way? I just KNOW that Grandpa must be watching you from his recliner in The Sky just smiling from ear to ear! Damn! Turns out we have some “lions” of our very own on this family tree, and you are certainly one of them!

DECEMBER 8, 2020: “Hey, Younger You – RISE UP!” …

First of all, my sincere gratitude to the very talented young artist I’ve befriended over on my Instagram page, @metalhead_ryze, for collaborating with me on this project. I sent her the words for which I needed a backdrop late the night before last with a query: “I need a superhero looking silhouette with a cape to go with these words. Can you do that?” This picture you see is the final result and I couldn’t be happier with it!

In the meantime …

… don’t forget …

… that “broken kids” aren’t always kids. Sometimes we’re adults. Treat yourself kindly, with patience, love and respect, and validate yourself always! TELL THE BROKEN KID HIDING BENEATH YOUR SKIN THAT THEY’RE TOTALLY FREAKING AWESOME AND THEY DIDN’T DESERVE TO BE BROKEN!

“Reparenting”

IT’S EVERYTHING!

The first day in your adult life that you’re TRULY able to show that broken kid you once were (or the kid you never got to be) a little empathy, grace, unconditional love and compassion, will be the first day of the rest of your life. I PROMISE! I call “that day” my second birthday, and yes my friends, I remember exactly where I was when I began the reparenting of “younger me”. It was April 8, 2008, and it truly was the beginning of everything I’ve become!

Much love to all of you “broken adult kiddos” out there. “Come out, come out, wherever you are!” Your cape will be waiting by the mirror! Find it. Accept it. Embrace it. WEAR IT! Let it adorn your “sick of being tired” shoulders and RISE YOU UP to who you’re waiting to become …

Your personal superhero …

YOU!

DECEMBER 6, 2020: “The Great Adventure” …

Can I get an AMEN and a witness?

A friend of mine posted this today, and I absolutely LOVED and shared it. In fact, it was one of my most “liked” photos on Instagram thus far, which I believe is telling. A well-stamped passport and an abundance of travel memories (at home AND abroad) as a child is the number one key to destroying hatred, bigotry, racism and xenophobia as an adult! We gotta keep their horizons BROAD so their minds can stay WIDE OPEN!

As I’ve said before, of all the many legacies the king left behind, perhaps the most treasured are our many “adventures”. Although he didn’t know it when we met, because the life he’d lived before us was mostly solitaire and uneventful, Williamson was a natural born adventurer at heart. It wasn’t long after our first trip together that he developed the same steadfast passion for travel that I’ve always had. There were so many nights he’d sit endlessly researching all the places he wanted to take us … and even more so, the places he wanted to take Gia. Once he’d decided that he was going to be the first one to take her to Europe? IT WAS ALL UPHILL FROM THERE! He had it firm in his mind that we would put one stamp in her Passport each year she of high school and college if possible, which for the record, is just one of the promises he made that I fully intend to keep!

Sadly, I can count on less than one hand all the places my ex-husband took me and the kids, and in fact, since the day she was born he has taken Gia NOWHERE! Not one place … not one time … ZERO “adventures” have they had. Traveling was just never his thing I suppose. Well, correction … “traveling with us” that is. He is more than par to the task if and when it suits him and according to “who” the priority is at any given time. I have it on good record that in over the years he has done his own fair share of traveling, but again, just not with our kids. Perhaps one of the most heart-breaking conversations I’ve ever had in my life was several years ago when I was sitting with Christian and his girlfriend at the time going through all his childhood scrapbooks.

Mom, why isn’t dad in any of these pictures?

He was right. His dad wasn’t in any of the travel pictures in his albums. For the most part, in our combined sixteen years together, I was the only one who took our son “on adventures”. Not Him. ME! It was always just me and Christian … either with my family or on our own. But you see, Christian had forgotten that part, as I believe he had had subliminally blocked that very painful reality from his memory. In being honest, I UNDERSTAND WHY, as my father never really traveled much with us either. In that moment, I think my heart actually shattered in a whole new kind of way, and to this day it breaks my heart when I hear those sobering words my son spoke echoing in the back of my mind. Zack understood my heartbreak in that regard, and to the best of his ability tried to include Christian in as many of our “adventures” as possible. It was just another of the many reasons I fell in love with him over and over and over!

In the meantime, I remain grateful for all the opportunities I’ve had with my both Zack and my kids to see as much of this beautiful Atlas as possible! I am fully aware that not everyone is so lucky and do not take that for granted. At the end of the day, to see, smell, taste, hear and experience EVERYTHING in EVERY MOMENT is my heart’s truest passion. Call me a gypsy, a wanderer, or a vagagbond … but one day I hope my kids’ kids will look back fondly on their “Crazy Grandma Cat” and think, “WOW! Just WOW! That Crazy Grandma Cat of ours … The Great Adventurer”! It’s the only legacy I want to leave behind when it’s time for my GREATEST adventure of all … THE BRIGHTER SIDE OF GREY!

THE GREAT ADVENTURE

Chasing thoughts inside my head of all I had to do today. Another time around the circle. Try to make it better than the last. I opened up the Bible and I read about You and me. Said we’d all been prisoners and God’s grace had set us all free. Somewhere between the pages it hit me like a lightning bolt. I saw a big frontier in front of me, and I heard Somebody say “let’s go”! Saddle up your horses, we’ve got a trail to blaze. Through the wild blue yonder of God’s amazing grace. Let’s follow our leader into the glorious unknown. This is a life like no other, whoa whoa this is the great adventure. So come on get ready for the ride of your life! Gonna leave long faced religion in a cloud of dust behind and discover all the new horizons waiting to be explored. This is what we were created for. Saddle up your horses, we’ve got a trail to blaze through the wild blue yonder of God’s amazing grace. Let’s follow our leader into the glorious unknown. This is a life like no other, whoa whoa this is the great adventure! We’ll travel long, over mountains so high. We’ll go through valleys so low. Still through it all we’ll find that this is the greatest journey that the human heart will ever see. The love of God will take us far beyond our wildest dreams. {Stephen Curtis Chapman}

DECEMBER 5, 2020: “In The Kingdom” …

THIS IS THE KINGDOM

This is the kingdom. KINGDOM! Everybody’s building empires. Building walls high in the name of glory. Everybody’s hanging high wires. It’s a fine line, it’s an age-old story. The first will be last, and the last will be kings. The small will be great, and the great will be weak. Everybody’s building empires, but it’s our time! This is the kingdom. Heaven coming down to the corners of the Earth. This is the kingdom! Come alive in us! Gonna light up this whole world. This is for freedom. FREEDOM! To break off every chain. This is the kingdom. Blessed are the bound and broken. You’re a citizen, and your faith will prove it. Blessed are the persecuted, and the wounded. You’ll be crowned as rulers. Everything else is gonna fade away. We stand together … one heart, one voice, one name. It stands forever. {Skillet}

The God I serve doesn’t make anyone but kings and queens! You just have to find a way to see yourself through His eyes and let your blind faith do all the rest! For the record, I’m an ecumenical abuser when it comes to ideals about humanity …

… MEANING …

… just because the words say “she”, “her”, and “woman”, it doesn’t mean the same words can’t apply to “man”. As for me? The mindset of a KING is the only one that will work for a queen, and the only one I will allow inside my atmosphere going forward!

IF YOU ARE READING THIS:

May you self-realize this entire day, rest well the entire night, then wake up in the morning with the mindset of royalty! Self-evaluate, REALIZE YOUR WORTH, and never sell yourself or your soul short of anything less than EVERYTHING! (And, NO, I’m not just talking about “stuff”!) Then someday very soon I hope you find your standing in the mirror saying THESE words to YOU:

You’re moving different and your price is going up. You AREN’T afraid to leave anyone behind. You ARE authentic and courageous. You ARE the type of human being most love, but get intimidated by because you know EXACTLY what you want. Take some time for YOU today to recharge and soak in the glorious solitude of YOU!

WELCOME TO THE KINGDOM!

DECEMBER 2, 2020: “You’re Just LAZY!” …

“Cat? Did you just say I’m LAZY?

UMMMMM – NOPE! You’re NOT!

Let me ask you something: Did you feel this one? In your core? HOW DID IT MAKE YOU FEEL? I HOPE IT MADE YOU FEEL RELIEVED! Listen up! YOU’RE GONNA BE OKAY! If I can do this? YOU CAN DO THIS!

YOU’RE A SURVIVOR!

Keep the faith my friends! Keep flying from the inside because there is no easy way out! And hey, if no one else in this ENTIRE world believes in you …

HERE’S SOMEONE WHO DOES!

SURVIVOR

Bulletproof. Adrenalized. Burning up. Cauterized. I’m the roar. The battle cry. Screaming out … IT’S MY LIFE! It’s my time! My fight! I’m unstoppable! I’m unbreakable! It’s my pride, my ride. I won’t be denied! How you like me now? Alive ‘cuz I believed. You tried to knock me out, but you couldn’t drop … no you couldn’t drop me! I’ll never bow down! Never own defeat! ‘Cuz you messed with a fighter! I stand here baptized by the fire. A SURVIVOR! Supercharged. Flying high. All lit up. Electrified. I’m the storm. A hurricane. Rising up like a tidal wave! {Scott Stapp}

NOVEMBER 30, 2020: “The Beautiful Infection” …

Will I know if it’s happiness I see? Will I feel a different side of me? And if I let it go, would you come back to haunt me? Am I doing the best that I can? We can wait for tomorrow or we can find ourselves right now. Think about all that we’ve wasted trying to figure all this out. I know it’s not too late to turn it all into something beautiful. Can I see The Light still needs to shine inside of me through the windows I can’t find. Will you let me go? I’m tired of hiding. I’m trying to find my way. We can wait for tomorrow or we can find ourselves right now. Think about all that we’ve wasted trying to figure all this out. I know it’s not too late to turn it all into something beautiful. {One Less Reason}

TO READ MORE ABOUT “THE TRIBE” THAT ALMOST DESTROYED MY BEAUTIFUL DAUGHTER, CLICK HERE.

NOVEMBER 30, 2020: “Another One Bites The Dust” …

Well, thank you kindly “Dr. X”! But, hey, you should see my heart … and my mind … and my soul … and my steadfast loyalty and servitude. Especially since those are the ONLY things about me that will stand the test of time, age and gravity. Oh well …

ANOTHER ONE BITES THE DUST!

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again … I’M THE NICEST BITCH YOU’LL EVER MEET. AND I’m a queen who will HAPPILY reign alone on this Earth for as long as I’m allowed to live here if there isn’t “one last king” waiting somewhere for me with a much better opening line than …

“You’re so pretty.”

Thank you so very much.

YOU’RE SO BLOCKED!

Yours truly …

~ THE QUEEN ~

NOVEMBER 28, 2020: “My Parking Lot Meds” …

Andy James (“DOCTOR SHRED”)

Does YOUR doctor make on-site visits to your neighborhood Walmart? MINE DOES! And the best part is …

NO DEDUCTIBLE!

NO CO-PAY!

Just a good time dealing with myself in a local parking lot today before I went inside the store, such that mascara was all over my face and I looked like I’d just cut onions while I was shopping for even MORE Christmas decorations and crow food! Have I ever told you that I love my actual life?

NOVEMBER 26, 2020: “I’m STILL Seein’ It” …

TEN THANKSGIVINGS LATER …

… and I still see the gold smoldering quietly in the embers, as far as my gaze to and fro, shining steadfast like a beacon to The Brighter Side Of Grey that led me to this Light … especially when I look in the mirror.

Golden is the crown that adorns my head, encrusted with all the precious diamonds of my life, not the least of which is me, the Queen I truly am, who was also created under pressure and fire.

The King may no longer reign beside me on Earth, and my sister may have moved miles away, but I still have my fire babies … and so many beautiful strangers … and I’m still so very thankful for these still so applicable words from “ten Thanksgivings later”.

These lonely hours like a fire refining something that’s precious – something that’s shining. There in the darkness, surrounded by coals … it’s starting to glow.

I think I see gold, and I’m just so very thankful … FOR EVERYTHING.

NOVEMBER 25, 2020: “Will The Sun Rise?”…

PERSPECTIVE.

After a deep and meaningful heartfelt intersection with my MUSE last night, or rather should I say, “a 4am meeting of the masterminds” (because after all, isn’t “4am when most masterminds do their best work), I’ve decided this needs to be said …

This song? It’s a favorite of mine! I still love Dokken very, very much, and still listen to them ALL the time. (“Under Lock And Key” is one of my lifetime favorite albums.)

“Will The Sun Rise?”

As I told my muse, the meaning of this song used to go RIGHT over my hairspray encrusted head. But now when I hear it, it wants to make me sad. I’m a grown up now. I’m a mother now. If I’m lucky? I’LL BE A GRANDMA ONE DAY … a “Crazy Grandma Cat“! These days we are living in, where it seems that Atlas really is falling?

The contemplation of “the Sun rising of it all” does tend to give cause for a fair amount of panic. But then I stop and think for a minute about everything I know to be true, and my perspective instantly shifts!

“Will the Sun rise? Yes! It will! I’ve “gotten to learn this” the very beautifully hard way. The lights go on. Then they go off. The dark of night comes. Then so does the Sun, to reveal the Brighter Side Of Grey.

Meanwhile …

Now is the time to share this song with your still impressionable teen. Have them listen and tell you how it makes them feel. The words to this beautiful, 35 year old melody have never been more relevant, and sharing them with a young person in your atmosphere could be a great opportunity to start a “music therapy conversation“.

I’m STILL the most blessed woman that I know!

If you look closely at the image on which I’ve put the lyrics to this song, you will see that it’s the “negative perspective” of a sketch I made from my father’s cigarette ashes years ago. But look below now to my “brighter side perspective” today. It’s my truth in my grey and it’s EVERYTHING! And, with that, I once again leave you with this …

NOVEMBER 24, 2020: “And They Shall Rise Up”…

They made me a mom.

They made me strong.

They made me REFUSE to give up on myself under any circumstances!

They make me DETERMINED with every single breathe that I’m lucky enough to take to be a Light in all their darkness.

You see, “Phoenixes can only make phoenixes”, so they have no ther choice but to rise up and and fly.

And that, my friends, is just the way it is!

RISE UP

I was hoping for an indication. I was seeking higher elevation. Ay, ay, ay. Ay, ay, ay. I’ve been shaken wakin’ in the night light. I’ve been breakin’, hiding from the spotlight. Ay, ay, ay. Ay, ay, ay. The more I stray, the less I fear, and the more I reach, the more I fade away. The darkness right in front of me. Oh it’s calling out and I won’t walk away! I would always open up the door. Always looking up at higher floors. Want to see it all. Give me more. Rise, rise up! I was always up for the making changes. Walking down the street and meeting strangers. Flipping through my life turning pages. Rise, rise up! Like a prayer that only needs a reason. Like a hunter waiting for the season. Ay, ay, ay. Ay, ay, ay. I was there, but I was always leaving. I believe it, that I was never breathing. Ay, ay, ay. Ay, ay, ay. I’m bursting like the 4th of July, so color me and blow me away! I’m broken in the prime of my life, so embrace it and leave me to stray! {Imagine Dragons}

NOVEMBER 23, 2020: “One Light Burning” …

ONE LIGHT BURNING

All alone in the dark. No walls, no windows. Trying hard to define Heaven from hell. Standing out in the rain with just one shadow. Nothing to see or believe beyond myself. See my life going by each moment I am alive. I keep reaching out, holding on, hoping somewhere in my life there’s one light burning. I feel it like my heart beating inside. Somewhere in my life, there’s one light burning. All alone with my fears. No words are spoken. A story yet to be told locked in my mind. Hope is somewhere ahead shining brightly, but the past is always following close behind. Somewhere in my life, t here’s one light burning leading the way. {Richie Sambora}

If you’re reading this …

… PLEASE REMEMBER …

It doesn’t HAVE to be the dark of night to get out there, Light ’em up and be that “One Light Burning”!

It’s Monday, November 23, 2020! So many kids are home this week with parents and families who are desperately thinking “WHAT THE HELL” – especially where this whole “holiday season 2020 COVID style” is concerned. Yah, it’s really kinda DARK outside, EVEN in the daytime!

Let me encourage you to to THIS …

While you’re out and about living life today, SMILE AT SOMEONE! Be kind to EVERYONE! Hold a door open. Pay for someone’s lunch. HELP where you can (smiles are FREE). Say “have a good day” (and really mean it) to a complete and total stranger and see how truly good and hopeful it makes you feel! Do it for them, do it for you, do it in tribute to loved ones you’ve lost who would WANT you to have learned to value humanity and cherish “the living” with their crossing. DO IT BECAUSE ITS THE RIGHT THING TO DO! Especially because, as we all surely know, NO ONE MAKES IT OUT OF HERE ALIVE! So many people, including our loved ones, do lose the hope they need to keep their feet on this foreboding and shaky ground we call planet Earth! YOU know that I KNOW this all too well! For those of us left behind in the wake of a loved one’s lost battle with the darkness, WE OWE IT TO THEM TO LIGHT THE WAY FOR THE OTHERS!

Listen! Just because you can’t see a burning flame in the daylight, it doesn’t mean you can’t feel a burning flame in the daylight. A flame is a flame regardless of its timing, circumstances or surroundings … IT GIVES WARMTH! So, get out there and make it a powerful Monday everyone …

Chin Up!

Knuckles Out!

LIGHT ‘EM UP!

ONE LIGHT BURNING!

NOVEMBER 21, 2020: “The Gift Of Being Torn To Shreds” …

Say what? “The GIFT of being torn to shreds?” Yes, IT’S AN ACTUAL THING! And, I might add, very important. Let me explain …

If you’ve been reading this Diary and have really know me, you know I’m a Spartan mental wealth advocate, and especially where music therapy is concerned. I truly believe music is an actual gift from Heaven, the SOUL purpose of which is to not only help us feel alive, but in some cases, to keep us alive!

But first let’s back up. Raise your hand if you also know that I’m a Knucklehead, and that 5FDP is my band. Ahh, good, now where were we? Their music has been one of the best parts of my story, especially as I’ve started that bittersweet journey not every widow survives … Crossing Over“. I follow each the band member faithfully on social medias, not only because it’s fun, but also because it’s right. (“To whom much is given” works both ways, so always keep this in mind: If you favor an artist who’s craft brings treasure to your life … SUPPORT THEM! I’m certainly no rock star, nor am I anyone “famous”, but even in the small, but growing arena where I’m trying to shine my Light, it is SO good to feel valued. And dare I say there’s a better than not chance that most artists are true empaths, and thus tend to become emotionally and physically VANQUISHED while sharing their souls with the world? But I’ve digressed …

Damn! Where was I? Oh, yah! So, yes, indeed, I follow 5FDP faithfully, who recently named a new lead guitarist, a NOT unfortunate looking Brit named Andy James. Two days ago I found him on Instagram, heard some of his solo work, and lo and behold, I had to message him:

Hello Mr. James. I’m not going to blow liar-face smoke up your ass and say “I’ve been following you allllll this time – love your stuff”. Because, that would be a liar face LIE! But, I’m following you now, and your music is awesome. One of my favorite treats in this realm has been my incessant search for “guitar that can make me cry”. Its actually been a huge part of my mental health battle and recovery. This year I’m “fifty-one-derful”, lol (51), and so far there are just under a handful of guitarists that have been able to take that crown – “shred her up and made her cry”. You’re now number 5! Well anyway, I just wanted to drop a line and say thank you. Music is how I survive. It’s like, “emotional cutting” without the scars or blood. I love to fucking hate it, so, THANKS MAN! You are a very talented, not that unfortunate looking razor blade!

The coolest part?

HE WROTE ME BACK!

Meanwhile, he is extremely talented, and the first solo I heard did make me cry. It was so fucking awesome, and so fucking tragic, all at the very same time! Especially in that what I’d written him was true … in my entire life of 51 years there had only been four guitars that literally “tore me to shreds”. (One of them, ironically, being the rift at :09 in Def Leppard’s “Torn To Shreds“.) I heard him play and found my number five! THIS GUYS GOT IT! He’s a magnificent beast and I’ve already downloaded all his albums. With that being said, have you ever heard of “emotional cutting”? The Urban Dictionary says this:

I’m an “emotional cutter”! But not in the clinical sense. I don’t enjoy injuring myself or being a victim. (At least not anymore, that is.) My kind of “cutting” will heretofore only ever be referred to as “SHREDDING”, meaning, I hear certain music that makes me feel some way that I either was previously or am currently unable to connect with, the floodgates open, I run an emotional gauntlet, then it’s over, and I’m just better! Kind of like that “Real Life” thing in April 2008, that “Brighter Side Of Grey” thing in March, or that “Hold Her” thing in the parking lot. Some music just breaks me down! It’s not a bad thing. In fact, it’s probably one of the BEST and HEALTHIEST tools I’ve managed to acquire in the quest to fortify my emotional wealth.

Rare is the guitar that evokes the shredding of all shreds of me, and at this point it’s my funnest game. Kind of like “Where’s Waldo”, where you search high and low through puzzle book insanity for this one little guy in a hat, but in my game it’s: “Where’s That ONE Guitar That Will Cut My Heart Out Like An Angel Blade Slicing A Hellhound, Only To Slip It Back As Softly Into My Chest As A Mother Nursing Her Child”. Yup. IT’S LIKE THAT! On a scale of all the music I’ve heard in my life? I suppose you could call it my Astatine … the rarest, darkest, most lustrous and mysterious semi-conducting element of them all. The first time a guitar ever happened to me this way:

I remember it vividly! I’d been out running errands and was approaching the house in which I dwelled that was certainly not a home when it availed itself on my cue. From that first solemn chord, the forlorn guitar began cutting me like a knife as I pulled into the garage. I couldn’t shut my car off and was compelled to sit and listen as the words began to play. Then, out of nowhere, a barrage of tears washed over me, literally and metaphorically. I was so numb and paralyzed in the moment that I couldn’t even lift my arms to wipe my eyes. I could neither breathe nor feel my fingertips as the music began manifesting a truly physical aching inside my heart.

It was “The Gift” I never saw coming, yet I needed so fucking badly, and one of the most significant crossroads of my life. Now then, back to today. There I was in a Costco parking lot after schlepping 200 pounds of stuff I didn’t need into my car. Meanwhile, I don’t know what your Costco parking lot looks like on Saturdays, but mine is like a 7am freeway on a Monday – jam packed with everyone and their mothers. I’m trying to back out, foot upon the brake, arm resting behind the passenger seat and head twisted all the way around waiting patiently for someone who’s not a selfish asshole to let me jump in line, because GOD FORBID someone gets in front of them IT COULD RUIN THEIR ENTIRE LIFE! You know what I’m sayin’, right? Anyhooo … SO, there I am waiting for what seemed like an actual eternity … and then … it happened again … when this found its way to my cue …

So, with that, I leave you with this:

“Emotional SHREDDING” …

It’s what’s for breakfast …

… or maybe even lunch …

… and sometimes in a Costco parking lot!

If you’re lucky enough to have been “shred” by a guitar, BE THANKFUL TO YOUR CREATOR! These moments? These artists? THEY’RE GIVEN FROM THE HAND ABOVE TO HELP US FIND OUR LIFE PULSE! To force us to “feel something”. Feel anything. FEEL ALL OF IT! It’s the best kind of medicine, totally free of charge, sometimes better than sex, and much less dangerous than getting drunk, high, tattooed, arrested, or worse yet, blowing your fucking brains out! Sorry, not sorry, to drop that last bomb, but have you read the story of my King? Do you know the TRUE beginning of his end? It was that moment by the window in our kitchen, a single tear falling from his eye:Catherine, I can’t feel anything.”

If you’ve never experienced this true phenomenon, let me tell you how: Grab one of his albums (or even just this song), turn off the lights, put in the earphones, close your eyes, deep breathe in, slow breathe out, then just, press, play. It’s that simple! Inhale it. Absorb it. Run in to it like a fire! LET IT SEVER YOUR PSYCHE LIKE A SURGEON OPENING HIS PATIENT SO YOUR MIND CAN “FEEL” WHAT IT NEEDS TO HEAL! Let it crawl under your skin: Surreal. FANTASTICAL! If you bleed? You need to bleed. If you cry? You need to cry. Get pissed off? YOU NEED THAT TOO! It’s called self-validation, and I’m telling you people – IT’S EVERYTHING! Just let it all fucking go! (SEE ALSO: “Knives“, another one of “my five”.)

Now, I have an appointment with a brand new surgeon tonight, “Doctor James”. I’ll be sitting alone in this fortress I call home with all the space and freedom I need to let his hands bleed me to nothing so that if I’m lucky enough to wake up again tomorrow, I’ll be able to feel EVERYTHING!

NOVEMBER 20, 2020: “Ink” …

… whereas some moms might see a “tragedy in ink” down the road temporarily penned on her teenage daughter’s hand, I instead see the limitless potential and possibilities for the extremely talented young Phoenix I’m raising who knows exactly who she is, has a pretty good grasp on what she wants and where she wants to go, and isn’t afraid to express herself, be herself, and see things in herself that while on the surface may look a bit dark, are in reality, extraordinarily beautiful! Sometimes I literally pinch myself because I can NOT believe I made her. I’ve made TWO extraordinary human beings!

I’ve said it before,

and I’ll say it again,

No one will ever truly understand either the depth of each of their hearts’ bounds or the mountains of ashes they’ve both had to ascend from to teach themselves how to fly. I am such a lucky mom, and I just can’t say it enough! But this girl of mine? She’s one you’ll need to watch out for …

… like, as in …

STAY OUT OF HER FLIGHT PATH IF YOU’RE AFRAID TO HAVE YOUR EYES BURNED OUT BY HER LIGHT! Her Light makes my Light look like the 5-watt bulb from a nightlamp by the way … even when it appears that she’s “going dark”. I’d be doing myself a grave disservice if I didn’t say that some day when I’m grown up I hope to be just like her! I’m so proud to be their mom! BOTH my kids are my heroes! With all that being said, and so far as the “ink” of it is concerned, all I have left is this

“I’ve loved them all … so much that it hurts” … so I have them all inked to keep them insideevery day for the rest of my life.

INK

Got a tattoo that said “together through life”. Carved in your name with my pocket knife. And you wonder when you wake up, will it be alright? Oh oh. Oh oh. Feels like there’s something broken inside. All I know, all I know – is that I’m lost whenever you go. All I know is that I love you so. So much that it hurts. Got a tattoo and the paint’s alright. Just want a way of keeping you inside. Oh oh. Oh oh. All I know, all I know … is that I’m lost in your fire below. All I know is that I love you so. So much that it hurts. I see the road that you climb. I see the scars begin to show. I see your colors and I’m dying of thirst. All I know is that I love you so, so much that it hurts. {Coldplay}

NOVEMBER 19, 2020: “Carry On” …

If you didn’t already know this by now, my daughter isn’t just any regular kid. She is an actual superhero and I cannot say it enough. No one, and I mean NO ONE, will ever really know exactly what she has been through the last five or six years, or just how bittersweet this night is for us both. It’s the long-awaited series finale of her favorite show EVER … “Supernatural“.

There aren’t really that many words I have to write at this moment, because not only am I literally a raw and open wound after having watched it, I literally just don’t “have” the proper words. What I can tell you is that if you click right here you will be taken back to a post I wrote just over a year ago, “OCTOBER 23, 2019: Supernatural”, wherein you will catch a glimpse of what this show has meant to not just her survival journey, but mine as well … because … if I had lost her too the night Zack ended his own life? Well, I just don’t know where in the actual hell I’d be right now.

This show is the reason she was brave enough to reach out to the ImALIVE crisis helpline on August 22, 2019, when she began to realize that Zack (her “Bobby Singer“), was indeed going to end his own life that night, and THAT’S why we still have her with us. Because of this “silly show”. So, yes, this night is bittersweet for both of us. But, as I’ve told her all along … and as we’ve already “gotten” to learn … sometimes endings really are just beginnings.

Heaven ain’t just re-livin’ your golden oldies anymore … it’s what it always shoulda been – everyone happy, everyone together. It ain’t just Heaven, Dean. It’s the Heaven you deserve.

{Bobby Singer to Dean Winchester}

So, with that, I leave you now with the last two scenes from one of the most impactful eras of our lives. If you know our story? Zack’s story? You’ll understand exactly what these two fictional, yet poignant moments in time mean to me and my girl.

“Carry On” my friends … CARRY ON!

NOVEMBER 18, 2020: “Will The Sun Ever Rise?” …

MY SON. No one will ever really understand what this kid has gone through just to survive. But he’s MY kid. I made him! FUCK that venom suit, and everyone who put it on him! He’s a fighter, just like me, and just like his sister. So, will the Sun ever rise? Yes, it will! And yes, HE WILL!

Hey hey you, are you living the dream? If you’ve seen what I’ve seen, nothing is clean. Hey hey you, while I’m rolling the dice – I’m paying the price, I’ve been walking on ice. Hey hey you, just get outta my way – at the end of the day, you’ve got nothing to say! Hey hey you, see the look in my eyes! Will the Sun ever rise, will the sun ever rise?”

I love you Christian Peter, to the Moon and back!

– Momma

NOVEMBER 12, 2020: “Black Roses”

BLACK ROSE

I saw you in the garden – I wanted you so much. I really thought that you were different, oh I couldn’t get enough. I tried to save you from yourself – I felt every high and low. But the lows have drowned the highs away, now there’s no where else to go. Black rose your thorns are cutting into me for the last time. Black rose I watched your petals wilt away. I couldn’t bring you back to life! You were always where The Sun could never go. I never wanted you to have to be alone. But I couldn’t find a way to help you grow … Black Rose. You never tell me how you feel, and your moods they always change. I really tried to make it real, but you never had the faith. I tried to give you something good to take the pain away. I tried to make you understand – you don’t have to be this way …” {Trapt}

… that moment you’re so proud of yourself when “that one song from your past” cues up as your driving down the road, only this time it doesn’t make you cry. God has been so good to me in all the ways He’s helped me find closure and peace with the MANY black roses from my past … not the LEAST of which was ME! Trust me when I tell you that I wasn’t ALWAYS so upbeat, “Light-Filled” and optimistic. If you’ve read any of the chapters from the beginning of this Diary, YOU KNOW EXACTLY WHAT I AM TALKING ABOUT! There was a very dark time in my life when I was the blackest rose of them all! Such is life, right? We live, and we learn, then we move on!

Trapt is one of my all-time favorite bands by the way, and Black Rose truly is one of the “songs of my life”. If you’ve never heard it before, take a listen … IT’S SOOOOO PRETTY! But hey, if you do, I want you to tell me something PLEASE :: Can you say that when you get to the “at 3:23” guitar rift that it doesn’t send chills up your spine? I CANNOT! It’s actually one of the most beloved instrumental rifts I’ve ever heard and treasure, because it just makes me feel SOME KIND OF WAY! It’s never too far from my heart, no matter what kind of mood I’m in. Truth be told, I’ve probably “backed up and replayed” it 50 times in a row just so I could “feel something” (many of which times were to make myself cry when I couldn’t). Meanwhile, thank you God for the roses of my life – EVEN the black ones!

NOVEMBER 13, 2020: “That One Light Burning” …

HOW DOES THIS PICTURE MAKE YOU FEEL?

THE GREEN MILE” … One of my favorite movies EVER! And for anyone else who’s not only seen it, but has also been HIGHLY impacted by it, this picture will probably make you feel either one of two ways:

Powerless.

… or …

EMPOWERED!

If you know the movie, you probably know the full quote ::

I’m tired, boss. Tired of being on the road, lonely as a sparrow in the rain. I’m tired of never having me a buddy to be with to tell me where we’s going to, coming from, or why. Mostly, I’m tired of people being ugly to each other. I’m tired of all the pain I feel and hear in the world…every day. There’s too much of it. It’s like pieces of glass in my head…all the time. Can you understand?

For an empath like me, this picture could make me feel completely exhausted, drained and empty. In being honest? Before I elevated myself and my thought processes to a much more evolved space, I would have been completely exhausted, drained and empty after seeing it. But now?

I’m a Warrior. Motivator. SURVIVOR ;

THIS PICTURE JUST MAKES ME EVEN MORE DETERMINED TO FIND ALL THE LIGHT IN THIS SEEMINGLY DARK WORLD AND THROW IT UP INTO THE SKY … like the endless fractions of stars and electric twinkle I know I am!

Yes, it is true …

“Some people” can be mean, selfish, twisted, hate-filled ASSHOLES.

But not “ALL PEOPLE”!

All the hope, faith and positive energy you will ever need IS out there somewhere – EVERYWHERE – you just have to look with a different set of eyes to find it! “Love, light and optimism” to all of you shining beauties who are reading this right now!

SMILES ARE FREE!

LAUGHTER IS INFECTIOUS!

KINDNESS AND COMPASSION ARE WORTH THEIR WEIGHT IN GOLD!

EVERYTHING’S NOT SO BAD!

In the wake of all the chaos that surrounds us?

GET OUT THERE AND BE THAT …

ONE LIGHT BURNING

All alone in the dark – no walls no windows. Trying hard to define Heaven from hell. Standing out in the rain with just one shadow – nothing to see or believe beyond myself. See my life going by each moment I am alive. I keep reaching out, holding on, hoping somewhere in my life there’s one light burning. I feel it like my heart beating inside. Somewhere in my life – there’s one light burning. All alone with my fears – no words are spoken. A story yet to be told locked in my mind. Hope is somewhere ahead shining brightly, but the past is always following close behind. I feel it like my heart beating inside. Somewhere in my life – there’s one light burning – leading the way … leading the way. {Richie Sambora}

NOVEMBER 8, 2020: “The Day Of The DR Horton Hoodie” …

I didn’t want this day to go by without recognizing this very important “Facebook memory” from one year ago today.

It wasn’t clear WHY Gia was in such a panic getting ready for school today. Until it was. The revelation was just so bittersweet, and let me tell you why …

The Day He Met Don “DR” Horton! (August 25, 2018)

God, please let that hoodie reappear. Like me, one of the things she is most proud to say is “she was in the Horton family”. She knows how hard he worked to create the life he made for us, and knows that company had so much to do with how we got here. Not just materially either. While all this “stuff” is super nice background noise, the best background noise we have is the beautiful reality that his very successful career at DR Horton gave him the sense of accomplishment, belonging and validation he’d needed for so long. Horton was his “other family”, and ours too, and for that we will always be grateful.

So much has changed in both her mind and heart since the day this post was made, and although we never found that hoodie, what I can tell you is this: We have found peace, solace and so many beautiful reasons to be thankful as we keep sifting through the things that make us feel close! I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again …

Despite the way this chapter of our story ended, we are still two very lucky girls!

NOVEMBER 8, 2020: “Yes, Indeed – SO Good To Me” …

Soooo, can I just tell you what amazing thing happened to me this morning?

MY GIRLS BROUGHT ME BREAKFAST IN BED!

It’s funny too, because as I was laying in bed and listening to them stirring, I thought, “But damn, I’m not READY to get up!”

So, I said to the jar sitting beside me on the nightstand where the King is now resting peacefully, “What I wouldn’t give for your Sunday coffee and eggs.” (The man brought me coffee every single day from our first married morning in his apartment until his very last day on this Earth.) The next thing I know, I hear them down in the kitchen and smell some fresh coffee brewing. I chuckled to myself, “And now here we are now … she’s finally reached the COFFEE stage of her life!”

The NEXT thing I know, she walks into my room and says, “YASSS queen, you’re staying in here until I say so!”

“What! Why? What’s wrong out there? What did you do?”

Ten minutes later, this “Sunday coffee and eggs” magically showed up on my lap!

I’m so blessed that it’s not even fair, and God truly has been so good to me! Every woman alive should feel this highly revered right now, though I’m sadly aware that not all do. Sufficed to say, that indeed it is true that “MINDSET REALLY IS EVERYTHING”! My King may be gone, but my reign is far from over, as not a day has gone by, nor will it ever, that I don’t remind myself of exactly who I am: AN ACTUAL LIVING QUEEN!

Make it a great Sunday everyone! I’m still “Christmasing” here at Williamson Manor … and trust me … IT GONE BE GOOD! I’ll blog it later, but in the meantime, much love to you and yours! And remember …

YOU ARE ROYALTY TOO!

NOVEMBER 5, 2020: “The Crows & The Butterflies” …

… and that moment a simple picture sheds a WHOLE NEW LIGHT ON TWO very simple words:

“CROW’S FEET”

Nothing I have ever survived or risen above will steal my truly blind faith in this Cosmos, as I believe with every shred of my being that regardless of what I think, say or do, there’s a perfectly purposed wheel spinning around me at all times. Like this picture, for instance, wherein some of you may just see “crow’s feet”, which, IS FINE! TO EACH HIS OWN! But I see something so much more than some random corvid’s scaly toes. I see a message from the Big Hand in the sky screaming out to me in living color:

Hey … YOU … REAL Cat! EVERYTHING really IS gonna be okay. Just take a look around at all these promises I’ve sent you.

If you’ve ever heard this song before, you may believe it’s from the perspective of a parent grieving the loss of a child. But the lyrics are open to vast interpretation, so to me it speaks of loss in general and the numbing process of letting go of someone you love and moving on. Within the collage of tattoos on my back is the crow from this song holding white balloons, which represents the final chapter of my life with Him and the beginning of the end of the mental illness I’d been living with for so long. It marked the death of the toxic relationships in my life (not the least of which was with myself), the loss I’d suffered along the way, and the birth of all that could possibly be waiting for me on the horizon. The song was to Him, and to me: “I’m burying this now and starting over”.

For years I couldn’t hear this melody without ugly, gut-wrenching tears as I thought about all that I’d lost; The innocence of my childhood, my marriage and myself, my virtue, the first man who ever loved me and a child. But now when I hear it, despite what’s happened since? I sing it out loud, straight into The Cosmos, while thanking GOD for all the pain I’ve endured.

So, yes, some of you just see “crow’s feet” here, and again, to each his own! But after everything I’ve learned thus far, when I see this picture I see an entire lifetime as I’m jaunted backwards through a maze of things I’ve loved and lost, then propelled into an eternity of possibilities yet to come. The God I serve has had loving control since before I knew my mother’s womb, and this masterpiece He’s been painting has both nothing and everything to do with me at once. I’m just a pebble, in an ocean, with Light, and dark, and beauty, and magnificence swirling about me regardless of what I can see. Death really is nothing at all, my true Home is somewhere else, and this simple picture of the most beautiful crow’s feet I think I’ve ever seen reminds me yet again that I’m one very lucky girl!

A VERY SPECIAL THANKS TO MY INSTAGRAM FRIEND “@thecrowtographer”, for allowing me to share this picture! As I’ve told him already, and if whoever reading this doesn’t already know, Gia and I are OBSESSED with crows. Every time she sees one she TRULY believes it’s him visiting us from The Other Side, and I’m starting to believe that she’s RIGHT!

NOVEMBER 5, 2020: “Do You Mind If I Ask You What Your Name Is?” …

Of COURSE I don’t mind if you ask what my name is …

So long as YOU don’t mind that I think you’re an actual moron!

Listen up people! This is me just being REAL! If you’ve read ANYTHING I’ve written or watched a SINGLE one of my videos, you must have CERTAINLY have realized by now that as positive, uplifting, gracious and FORGIVING as my heart can truly be, I really amthe nicest bitch EVER“! Some things just have to be screamed way out loud and for what they really are … and in this case? Well, you can just listen for yourself.

NOVEMBER 1, 2020: “Crossing Over” …

CROSSING OVER

All perched alone he sits there broken. An eldered man with storm clouds setting in his eyes. He counts the sands of time – remembering day’s gone by. It seemed like yesterday before it washed away. Hey, don’t wait for me there – just find your own way. Hey, don’t wait for me there – ’cause I’ll be there soon enough. The widow’s life ticks out like clockwork. A thousand tears she’s cried a hundred time’s before. But now that he is gone, she’s ready to move on. It all just fell away – it seems like yesterday. {Five Finger Death Punch}

Some days I rise with all the words I need to say just pouring out of my soul, and often it’s because of a dream. Like today, which would have been our 10th wedding anniversary. It’s been just over a year of bittersweet healing on this road I never planned to travel, and though I knew it was fast approaching, I also knew it would be a major turning point in my final ascent out of the darkness and into The Light. So, with that, let me tell you how my beautifully shattered life works

To begin, indeed I dreamt last night, but not before closing my eyes to the sound of the Halloween shenanigans of my daughter and her crew. (PS) Did I ever tell you that the one design flaw with Williamson Manor is that her theatre room and living area are directly above the master? Yup! They are! As it turns out, however, it’s not a flaw at all! Believe it or not, especially in this last 438 days, those echoes of stomping, laughing and chaos into the wee hours of so many nights are a lullaby to me. It’s why he built this home “from the ground up” and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Knowing she’s here, and happy, safe and whole, is one of the truths that comforts me the most. But damnit, I’ve digressed!

Where was I? Oh yes … my dream! I was front row center at a Five Finger Death Punch show, but instead of a mainstream concert venue, it was a very intimate gathering where Ivan was singing to me:

The widow’s life ticks out like clockwork … a thousand tears she’s cried a hundred times before. But now that he is gone, she’s ready to move on …

As he was singing he reached out his hand and a tear rolled down his cheek. But it wasn’t Ivan’s face! It was Zack’s face, on Ivan’s body, holding that legendary, spike-encrusted mic stand in one hand while reaching out the other to me like a muse. It was the most beautiful insanity imaginable! In the dream, I was thinking, “This means something. What does this mean?” Then I woke up and I knew.

In order to fully appreciate where I’m going with this, you must understand that I am led solely by intuition and feelings. Call me spiritualist. Call me a “good witch”. Call me whatever the hell you want. It’s my truth just the same and it’s never gonna change!

In every thing there is a meaning, in every moment a message, and something means everything, even if it’s nothing!

This is what I believe! Am I crazy? Out of touch? Insane? Delusional? Perhaps! But at the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter, and let me tell you why: What if I’m RIGHT? What if it’s true? What if the Cosmos really is trying to speak to me. What if it really is him “communicating with us” through the fog and the crows and the lights in our bathroom? That, my friends, is the “crazy” blind faith that costs me nothing but gains me everything. Sooner or later I too will cross over, and either I’m right or I am wrong. Meanwhile, directly after waking this morning from that most ethereal dream, this was at the foot of my bed. It’s nothing, really. Nothing at all. Just one of the girls’ bracelets that either Good Cat or Bad Cat must have found and deposited at the exact spot my foot was supposed to hit the ground. “C’mon Cat, it’s just a bracelet.” Well duh, I already know that! But why did it show up in the endless twist of “F8” this way? Hmmmm. I think I kinda know …

IN CLOSING …

Ten years ago I kissed a frog who turned into a king. Five years ago today that same king turned me into a princess. Last night I had a dream, then woke up “on the edge of eternity”, at which point I was then was reminded of the pure and endless joy he brought into my life that I get to keep until it’s my time to touch The Brighter Side Of Grey. In the meantime, today marks the day. It’s time for me to move on, whatever that actually means, and I’ve asked God to show me what’s next. Sufficed to say, my heart is completely open to anything and everything … but this is the beautiful picture of the me I’m always going to be … thanks to him …

Happy Anniversary Williamson!

I don’t mind you hanging with us as long as you feel it’s necessary, but hey – don’t wait for me here. I’ll be there soon enough.

OCTOBER 31, 2020: “Our Blue Moon Halloween” …

~ The 2020 Halloween “Blue Moon” ~

It was an extremely low-key night here at Williamson Manor. Lots of laughter. Plenty of shenanigans. Me dressed up as Bat-Cat! I’m such a grateful momma with not too much to say! Although, I will tell you this … INDEED IT IS TRUE! There IS a certain ghost living in our house. Last night? We had an entire conversation with him! Are we crazy? Yup. Maybe. Is what it is! Hope everyone else had an amazing night!