JUNE 1, 2014: “The Ghost That Make You Feel Close” …

Dear Tonya,

Wow! Thanks a lot and now I’m in tears. I literally cannot remember the last time anyone other than my husband, sister, son or daughter have ever said such things to me. I know there are people who know “some of what I’ve been through” but not too many people will say the words. Okay so before this week is over I am going to send you what parts of The Diary I already have, but I still have so far to go. Everything about Zack and me is still too overwhelming for me to even begin to write about, although I’m sure the words will come to me just like all the rest have when it’s time.

I am so thankful for this season of change in my life. Yes, I do very much so believe that your brother would have wanted this for me, and also understand how this makes you feel closer to him. That’s how I felt during those first years after he left us when I was always in Louisiana with your Mother.

As far as Zack’s take on my deep bond to your family and my failure to somehow “with time” have Mitch “and that two years” just somehow fade away? It’s just something he has always understood and THIS is why he is who he is to me. He isn’t offended to live with my ghosts and he has genuinely embraced them with me. I am so lucky and I can’t say it enough. Not many men could do it! Peter certainly couldn’t! He didn’t get it at all, and to him Mitch was just “the guy she dated while we were divorced the first time who hit a brick wall on his motorcycle and died“. His response to my inability to let it all go was:

Well, just get over it. People die, I get that, but stop making it all about you! Be happy with your car, your house and all your Louis Vuitton bags and TAKE CARE OF MY KIDS please while I’m out here working so you can live in this house again and get to shop at Neiman Marcus however and whenever you want. Whahhh, you’re so mistreated Catherine! Get over your damn self!

That’s what Pete thought about me and Mitch. Do you see what I’m saying? But with Zack? Not so much. He cried when I told him about “that day and night” and has never ONCE failed to realize that just plays out loud in my head and often from out of nowhere, an when it does, he just holds me and cries with me all over again! He’s an angel, I’m telling you, he really is. Thanks for all you’ve said Tonya. I am so happy you’ll move to Texas one day. For real!

MAY 31, 2014: “Because It’s NEVER Really Goodbye” …


Dear Catherine:

I just wanted to say that I’m so happy we reconnected. I know, initially, my reason was to see if you could help me and Steve. But just talking to you, I get what an awesome person you are. Inside and out. I knew the first time I met you that you were the one. I wish things could’ve turned out different, but you DID say you believe in fate. And Zach was your fate. I’m so happy you’ve found the love that you deserve. This is going to sound strange but reconnecting with you makes me feel a little bit closer to Mitch. Is that weird? He would’ve wanted us to stay in touch. I’m sorry I didn’t. Especially knowing now what you’ve been through. I wish I could’ve been there for you. But the situation being what it was, I don’t know if that would’ve helped or hurt you even more with me being a constant reminder. You’re a beautiful, strong, amazing woman and no amount of surgery or disfigurement could EVER change that. Zach sees it. You should too. But I get where you’re coming from. It would just be nice to feel “complete” physically. Well, I love you and I’m looking forward to spending more tine with you when I become a Texan. BTW…I’ve always wondered….does Zach ever feel strange that we’ve reconnected? Just a thought. Oh, and don’t forget to send me that Diary. I’m a big girl and I can take it. My memories of him are all wonderful. Nothing can change that. Also, it’s always interesting reading about the same experience from someone else’s perspective.

G’night. – Tonya

MAY 30, 1998: “Silent Lucidity” …

~ Kirk Mitchell Boone ~

FRIDAY, MAY 29, 1998.

It was the eve of his 34th birthday, and he started the day by making good on his promise to pick my son up from school, meet his teachers, then take him out alone for the very first time so they could have an important talk. So, he took him out to lunch, told him he wanted to be a permanent part of our lives, then asked his permission to marry me. It was a powerful and PIVOTAL moment for all of us, and Christian was beyond excited.

When their date was over, he took Christian to my mom’s then returned home where I was already getting ready for his birthday party that night. We had originally planned to ride out on our separate Harleys and meet up with some friends for dinner, but my bike wouldn’t start, so we rode out on his bike to the The Blue Goose in Addison where they were waiting for us. We celebrated all night long and he excitedly told everyone that we were getting hitched!

After dinner, he wanted to go play pool, so we all gathered out front of the restaurant to caravan in the cars that were available since none of the boys had any business driving anywhere. We wanted them to leave the bikes at the restaurant, take the available cars to The Fox & The Hound, then return to get them later when they were sober. He kept insisting that he wasn’t drunk, though, and refused to leave that fucking devil bike behind. Before I knew what was happening amidst the chaos, I turned my head to see him and his friend sitting on their bikes revving the engines. I ran towards his bike frantically begging and pleading him not to go, but the bikes were so loud, he was beyond inebriated, so, he didn’t even notice, much less hear me. As they pulled out of the parking lot and made their way up Belt Line Road, I swear I knew I’d never see him alive again.

Just Past Midnight, May 30, 1998.

Not long after, he hit a brick wall, less than half a mile from our destination. He wasn’t wearing a helmet, and it was estimated that he’d been going at least 90mph. Once again, my life was as mangled as he was. That first true king of my heart, who up until that point was the only man other than my son who I’d ever truly loved, been loved by, or let see me “naked“, rode off with my heart hin a “Blaze Of Glory”.


Hush now, don’t you cry, wipe away the teardrop from your eye. You’re lying safe in bed. It was all a bad dream spinning in your head. Your mind tricked you to feel the pain of someone close to you leaving the game of life. So here it is, another chance. Wide awake you face the day! Your dream is over or has it just begun? There’s a place I like to hide – a doorway that I run through in the night. Relax child, you were there, but only didn’t realize and you were scared. It’s a place where you will learn to face your fears, retrace the years, and ride the whims of your mind. Commanding in another world, suddenly you hear and see this magic new dimension. I will be watching over you. I am gonna help you see it through. I will protect you in the night. I am smiling next to you, in silent lucidity. If you open your mind for me you won’t rely on open eyes to see. The walls you built within come tumbling down, and a new world will begin. Living twice at once you learn you’re safe from pain in the dream domain – a soul set free to fly. A round trip journey in your head. Master of illusion, can you realize? Your dream’s alive, you can be the guide but … I will be watching over you. I’m gonna help to see it through. I will protect you in the night. I am smiling next to you in silent lucidity. {Queensryche}


MAY 24, 1998: “My Declaration” …


I returned from the gym to find Mitch pacing frantically as I pulled into the driveway, but before I could put the car in park, he jumped into the passenger seat and said, “DRIVE! We have to get to the hospital NOW!”

Fifteen minutes later, in a family-filled emergency room, He and Mitch finally got their chance to meet. Mom, Grandma, and Christian had been in an accident!

Amidst all the chaos and before I even realized it, I found the two of them outside of the emergency room in what seemed to be a heavy conversation. According to Mitch, they’d been speaking about the expectations and boundaries they had for one another, and when the conversation was done, they shook hands and returned to the waiting room. It was a 10-ton weight off my shoulders because I still loved Him and very much needed his approval before I could move forward with Mitch.

The six days that followed the accident were a whirlwind of excitement! Mitch was overjoyed that He had given him his blessing and went full steam ahead with the plans he had for our future. He had called his mom that Sunday night, gone to see a jeweler on Tuesday and called his travel agent on Wednesday. He wanted to get married on a beach in Tahiti the weekend of my birthday that September. Especially exciting was the fact that Mitch had asked that he finally be allowed to go Christian’s school, meet his teachers, be added to the “pick up list” and take him out to a special lunch that afternoon, just the two of them, which, he did. If only I’d known that on what began as a beautiful day chocked full of hope for an entire future things would go so tragically wrong.


I’ll take you just the way you are, imperfect words inside the perfect song. I feel you closer than you are, but I’ve been waiting far too long. It’s my declaration to anyone whose listening … You’re my inspiration as I stand alone against the world. Cause you love and you bleed, and you stole my soul to set me free … It’s my declaration.  Do you care what I believe, ‘cause I’m still breathin’? Or that I wear your heart upon my sleeve? Sometimes I think you never knew, the only truth I see is you. It’s you. And are there any words to say that would ever mean enough, when the light runs from the day, will the darkness be too much? Will I ever be enough? {David Cook}

JANUARY 1997: “He Won My Heart!” …

Home became the haven I didn’t really like to leave as I recovered from “what lied beneath” one of the most twisted mind fucks of my life. Eventually, I started feeling better and started working out again at a gym I’d been a member of for years. Lol! If only I’d have known that not going back to his gym in an attempt to eradicate myself of his presence would ultimately prove to be pointless. “Hoovery MacHooverson” would always be lingering in my atmosphere. But, hey … AT LEAST I TRIED!

It was my very first visit back to that haunt that I’d made eye contact with this very cute dirty blond. We flirted back and forth a lot and I enjoyed his quiet attention, but it was months before we ever really spoke one Saturday night at what I’d only thought was an empty gym. Little did I know, he’d been there, solo, too, watching me and waiting for his moment … then it happened! He’d walked up behind me, pulled the microphones from my ears, and our much-anticipated conversation began:

So, why aren’t you out with your boyfriend right now? It’s Saturday night! Why are you alone here?

An hour later, we were at dinner across the street, and soon thereafter an item. Kirk Mitchell Boone was a strikingly handsome Cajun boy from Haughton, Louisiana, with whom I had a lot in common. He was genuinely kind, treated me with respect, and always kept me laughing. With him, I felt a safety that I’d never really known, and although I was careful not to jump into something serious too quickly, by the end of that year I just knew he was the one.

He was everything John wasn’t. There wasn’t a manipulative, narcissistic, self-serving bone in his body, and he never once took me for granted. We were very happy and even my family loved him, but I had firmly decided I would not bring another man into Christian’s life unless I knew he’d be the last. I’d kept their contacts brief, which was something Mitch agreed with and respected. I was so happy, and things couldn’t have been better.

Even Christian’s dad seemed to have resigned himself to the fact that Mitch wasn’t going anywhere, and though He’d claimed to still love me, He could see that I was truly happy. In the two years Mitch and I were together, though, the two of them had never met in person and had only ever spoken on the phone a few times when He would call the house. That was about to change …