Linda’s Poems: Tempting Fate


Tempting Fate











Death stand in front of me with a smile on his face

Ready to take me to a more peaceful place

Behind me sits life in all its strife and pain

Wondrous sights and love still to gain.


Each morning I make a choice between death and life

It’s like walking the thinnest blade of a knife

Choosing pain instead of blessed relief

Takes so much belief.


My demons have common names

Fear, anger, sadness, pain, frustration burn inside like bonfire flames

Arthritis, Depression, PTSD, Asthma  just to name a few

Feed on the pain and suffering inside of you.


My eyes are wide open, my body in turmoil, my mind decides our fate

Can we deal with what’s laid on our plate

Or do we choose to walk into the light

Giving up our daily fight.


Do we deal with the pain and fight the demons again

Or do we walk through deaths door with a grin

Doe we stay and revel in laughter and love

Or do we let the demons give us a final shove?


Decide, decide, decide on today’s choice of ride

Will it be demons or loved ones by my side

Decide, decide, decide will it be peace or pain

Making the choice could drive anyone insane.


Choice is made with one tiny thought

The first battle of the day has been fought

With a wave of his hand death walks out the door

But tomorrow he will be back with the temptation once more.


March 23, 2016


Linda’s Poems: Spoonie On

Spoon Ribbon

Spoonie On

Spoon Ribbon









The day is done
Many battles won
Lay down your sword and shield
Look back once more over the killing field
Celebrate the battle won
By the dying light of the sun

As you crawl into bed to sleep
And pray for your soul to keep
The moon shines her blessed light
Protecting you from sight
Close your eyes and rest my weary friend
This day is at an end

Tomorrow will come with a blank slate
Another day to greet our fate
Head held high
Sword and shield on your thigh
Ready once more to face the day
Come what may

Pain and scars you will hide
Tears held inside
You think you must always be strong
But my embattled friend you are wrong
I stand beside you hand held aloft
While whispering low and soft

Take my hand
Together we will withstand
Alone no longer
As a tribe we are stronger
Spoonie on, my friend
I got your back till the end




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Phoenix Rising

phoenix rising

Phoenix Rising

My soul bleeds rivers of fire,
Fighting morning, noon, and night
My body begins to tire
Of the pain and fright.

There is only so much I can handle
I am getting slow and weak
Nothing left but a nub of a candle
To light the words I speak

Who will be the witness to tell
The old me dead and gone
My body and soul an empty shell
Flash fire and smoke in the morning dawn

Ashes scattered along the ground
Tears of life slide free
Winds gently kiss the mound
No longer here to see

A small spark of golden flame
Prayers and love
Whispers of a warrior name
A soul reborn on the wings from above

phoenix rising

Flames rising in the night
Body battered and broken
Rising above the land a beautiful sight
The warrior takes its stand not a word spoken

No longer the same
Dead and gone is the past
A spirit born of smoke and flame
A future that is already cast

Warrior stands tall with a battle cry
Ready to carry on the fight
Arms thrown to the sky
Such a fierce sight

Born of smoke and fire carrying the burden of the past
Warrior strides into the future with little fear
Battles will come hard and fast
Leaving scars to bear

The warrior’s first and only words to be
Whispered across the battlefield and carried on the wind
“Watch me”
The only message the warrior will ever send.


Linda’s Poems: Whiskey Whispers

whiskey whispers

Whiskey Whispers

The color of honey and the sirens call
With the first sip the lies fall
The drink whispers to me
Drink more I will set you free.

whiskey whispers

Whispering it’s sweet lies
My give a damn slowly dies
You will feel no more pain
The world is yours to gain.

Another sip another drink
Will power falls down the sink
Whiskey whispered breath gently in my ear
You will feel no more fear.

Straight from the bottle the lies pour
Glugging down even more
Whispers seem so loud now in my head
Maybe you would be better off dead.

Whiskey sours, whiskey neat
Whiskey knocks you off your feet
Whispering all the time
Emotions flip on a dime.

Whiskey tears
Filled with fears
Whiskey anger let fly
Whispering die, die ,die!

The end is near
Whiskey whispers are harder to hear
As sunlight hits my eyes
I have survived another of whiskey’s lies.

A new day, a new try
Fighting against whiskey’s whispered lie
Day by day, night by night
Vows given to never give up the fight.

I hear the whispers on the bad days
Whiskey’s seductive sweet words and the traps it lays
Fears of falling into the deadly pattern once more
Rock my faith in me to the core.

I reach out for a helping hand
Praying a warrior will help me stand
Stronger when together we fight
Whiskey’s whispered lies can not withstand our might.

March 23, 2016

Linda’s Letters: Letter #6


Warning: Explicit content


March 23, 2016



Hey you,

Yeah, I mean you! So, the demons have come back to attack you while you’re down. They are offering you oblivion. They are whispering seductive sweet nothing’s about how the only peace you’ll ever find is to no longer exist. They tell you that you are a worthless piece of trash. You have no use to humanity and those you care about would be better off if you were not here. The demons scream inside your head and tear apart your heart. They suck out your will to fight. They fill you with doubt. The demons kill all hope. They laugh at your pleas for mercy. The demons feed off your doubt. Their life’s blood is your apathy and pain.

How do I know what you are feeling? Remember, I am you and you are me. I have been down this road. I have been where you are. I have faced my demons time and time again. I have fallen into the abyss and sunk into the demons embrace. I snuggled up with alcohol and drugs to find sweet oblivion. I have tried to erase my existence. I have pushed everyone away believing them better off. I have wanted to embrace death. Yet, here I stand and here you are.

When was your darkest night? The first was when I was sixteen and wanted to end it all with a gun to my head but I’ve already told you that story. So, why don’t I tell you of my most recent dark night? Just a few nights ago I sat in my living room debating if life was worth living. The demons were crowding around feasting on my heart and soul.
Ok, to give you an idea of why I went to the abyss that night I have to tell you about my day and what has been going on with me. First my health has been in a tailspin. My PTSD and Depression have been giving me fits. I am being evaluated for MS right now. My osteoarthritis in my knees and hip is worsening. My degenerative disc disease and peripheral neuropathy in my legs are fucking killing me. I recently found out I have spondyloarthritis in my lower spine and Oh fucking joy sciatica has joined the party! So here I sit day in and day out on meds that don’t adequately control the pain and off we go to the orthopedic specialist for my knees. I am ready for him to say we need to do more injections or some such horseshit and Bam! He lowers the boom and says not one but both knees need to be scoped. Well, fuck! Ok, pick my jaw up off the floor. Well, next he tells me you need to have your PCP find you a surgeon because no one here does that since your old surgeon left and we don’t know of anyone who takes your insurance. All I can think at this point is shit. This is going to take forever. Forever, that I am in pain. He basically patted me on the head and said come back if we can help with anything else.

I went home in so much pain. Thinking here we go again needing to find another doctor who takes my insurance and the whole time I have to sit and wait for this miracle I have to just deal with the pain. Then if we can find a doctor and get an appointment my partner will have to take time off to take me to the surgeries and possibly the appointment if it’s too far away. Fuck, another burden on her. She has enough shit to deal with. I am nothing but an albatross around her neck. She deserves someone who can be here to help her more. She deserves so much better than a broken down cripple. Add on top of all those thoughts the areas and pressure of family obligations and I was a real fucking mess.

I was so motherfucking pissed, sad, scared, frustrated, and in so much pain; both emotionally and physically. However, the most overwhelming feeling was of being tired. Tired of the fucking pain. Tired of being strong. Tired of the motherfucking pills. Tired of never feeling enough. Tired of being a burden. Tired of being passed off from one doctor to another. I was even tired of being so fucking tired. Put all these thoughts and feelings on an endless loop and the demons started to whisper sweet words in my ears.

The demon whispered that whiskey was the way to help. That sirens call is always in the back of my head. That night it was yelling come to me I will give you peace. I will give you oblivion. I will give you rest. I will make you forget everything. I will be your savior.

So what stopped you? Two things stopped me. The first being I know the lies that demon whispers. I knew if I went down that road that one of two things would have happened. I would have totally lost my shit and started punching the walls to cause enough pain to get the demons to get out of my head or I would have thrown the towel in and chucked it in the fuck it bucket and gotten truly serious about ending it all.

The second thing that stopped me was pain. The pain I would have cause so many by ending it all. The questions I would have left the people behind asking. Whether they could have stopped me? Whether I didn’t feel I could come to them? Why didn’t I love them enough to stick around? The never knowing why and the endless pain of loss and grief. That kind of pain eats at a person’s heart and soul and gives them a demon to fight. I know this pain and these questions. I carry this demon. I never want to be someone’s demon.

So, what did you do to stop this all? My partner was asleep for work and I just didn’t want to lay this at her feet. I didn’t want to be more of a burden than I already felt I was. So, I reached out to my two best friends. I called one and just told her to talk. It’s our signal that we are in the abyss and need a lifeline. I don’t know what she talked about but she calmed me enough that I could think a little clearer. The other friend I had been messaging with all day. I still don’t think she knows how much she held me together that day and evening. They both together steadied me enough that I could reach out to my tribe.

Why did you reach out to them? I reached out to them because I knew I was still deep in the abyss and they would understand. I wouldn’t be made to feel as if I am crazy. I would not be put down for being weak. They would cradle my heart and soul softly. Giving me the time and hope I needed to survive the night. These fellow warriors would be my rock. They would be my shoulder to cry on. They would fight for me because I was blinded and couldn’t see any light anymore. I know they realized how close I was to giving in, to giving up. These warriors saved my life that night.

How can you do this? You do this with the love and support around you. You reach out to anyone in your darkest moments. You find warriors like you that will walk beside you on your journey. You grab that tiny spark of hope that resides in the smallest corner of your soul and you breathe life into it daily. You remember me in your darkest moments. If you can’t see the light because you are blinded just reach out to the cosmos and my love for you, my hopes for you, my belief in you will always be there for you to grab. Hold it tight and know I am thinking of you and hoping the fates bring us together on our journeys. Then we can help, hope and support each other. When and if that day comes we will stand together, side by side, a war party of some of the most bad asses spoonie warriors ever seen.


Join the group of warriors here.


Linda’s letters is a chronically series. Did you miss the beginning? Start here with Letter #1.

Linda’s Letters: Letter #5



March 17, 2016

Hey you,

Yeah, I mean you. You think I don’t know what you’re feeling. You don’t think I know how you feel worthless. That the world wouldn’t miss you because you don’t really contribute anything worthwhile to it. You think I don’t know what it feels like to feel that I am invisible even though I am surrounded by family and friends. You think I don’t understand the pain and frustration of wishing that I was the old me. That I am losing me. That I hate this new me. That with each ability I lose just that much more of me disappears.

You are wrong. Remember, that I am you and you are me. We are not exactly the same but we walk parallel paths. We feel the same things. We understand each other without words. We understand the loss, pain and emotional toll this journey takes on a person’s spirit.

Why am I writing to you today? I see you struggling so much. All I want to do is wrap my arms around you and let you rest. All warriors need to have somewhere and someone. We all need a safe haven. We all need a place and a person who is there for us. We need a place to yell, scream, cry, celebrate our accomplishments, a place that soothes the heart and soul.
Have I found this place? Yes, I have. I have found a place to be the real me. I have found a group of people who understand me. I don’t have to be alone anymore. I am not walking this journey without assistance. I have someone to lean on. Somewhere to let my pain out. Somewhere where my soul gets a lift. I have found a family not borne of blood and bone, but of shared experiences, shared trials and tribulations. I have found my OHANA. I wrote a poem that explains this better. Here, you read it and then we will talk some more.


Bonds borne not of blood and bone
Never again to be all alone
Sister, brother, mother, father
Never to feel like you are a bother

We have never met face to face
Hearts and souls opening at their own pace
Arms opened catching me when fall
Hands reach out steadying at the first call

Words of encouragement and understanding on a screen
Journeys not otherwise seen
Pain physical, soul sick, and troubled mind
Everyone always so kind

Stories told
Love, pain, tears, anger, laughter all brought into the fold
Rejection a thing of the past
A home at long last

Bonds of steel surrounding me tight
Souls ready to help you fight
Family chosen of free will
Better than any feel good pill

Never to be let go or left behind
Emotion no longer confined
Understood, supported, filled with love
There when push comes to shove

Laughter, joy, just feels right
An army ready to help with the fight
Warriors lined up side by side and hand in hand
This is our OHANA ready to take a stand

What is OHANA and why am I talking about it? Well, OHANA means family. OHANA also means no one is forgotten or left behind. Family is no only who you are born to. It’s those friends that move into your heart and support you. They love you unconditionally. They fight for you when you can’t. They are the warriors who stand side by side with you and provide a safe haven; even when it’s you the protect you from. You are my OHANA and I am yours. We may never meet but we will always be connected.

Why am I telling you all of this? I want you to remember that I am you and you are me. I know how you feel when you fall into the abyss. I know how hard it is to fight your demons. You are not worthless! You will be missed by many if you were to disappear. I look for you daily. I would miss the warrior you are.

Yes, your journey is hard. Yes, you have changed. No, you may not be able to do the same things you use to but you are still here for a reason. What that reason is, only the fates know. So together we ride this rollercoaster. The ups and downs of our journey are hard to take. They test our will to fight. They take a piece of our soul. With each piece of us lost we question if we are still us. We miss who we use to be. We rage at fate. We cry for our losses. We question our place in life. We doubt our worth.

What I need for you to remember; what I need you to believe with all your being is that all this changes nothing. I need you to know that deep down, in the darkest recesses of your soul you still are you. The spark that you were born with hasn’t changed. What makes you, you hasn’t changed. You are still alive and kicking in there. All these physical and emotional changes are not the soul of you. In your soul lives the warrior who fights to live. In your soul lives your love. In your soul lives you will to fight. Your OHANA will feed all of these. Your OHANA will fight to bring the warrior to the surface. Your OHANA will help you find your place in life once again. Your OHANA will teach you that you are more than your physical abilities. Your OHANA will teach you that your emotions are valid and are understood. Your OHANA will help you find peace when you can’t find it for yourself. Your OHANA will bring you joy, laughter, and a smile even on your worst days. Your OHANA will pick you up when you fall. They will dust you off. They will hold you gently while you heal from battle. They will give you a kick in the ass when you need it. Your OHANA will love you no matter what.

Remember I said I am you and you are me. So, this means we are OHANA. Are you ready for that? Are you ready for me? I sure hope so because the bad ass warrior in me is ready for the challenge. The warrior is ready to fight for her tribe. Who is ready to kick ass? Who is going to stand with me? I will look forward to the journey ahead with you.




Linda’s letters is a chronological series. Start with letter 1 here.

Read Letter #6 here.

Linda’s Letters: Letter #4


Warning: Explicit content

March 2, 2016


Hey you,


Yes, I mean you! I see you there. You are sad, hurting , and wondering why the hell you are here. Why should you suffer this existence? The pain is eating you from the inside out. You feel as if there is no good left to live for. I see you when your mind falls into the abyss and cries for mercy. I see you when your PTSD erodes every bit of your sense of safety. I see you when life knocks you down when you just found your feet again. I see your struggles. I know your pain. I know the wish that each night when you go to sleep you will quietly slip away never to wake again. But you do and that alone means you are a fighter, a warrior.


How do I know your thoughts and feelings? Remember, I am you and you are me. I get knocked on my ass by life. I get thrown into the abyss by my thoughts and feelings. My pain is your pain. We may not be exactly the same but we travel parallel roads. I know what it feels like to think that your body, and your mind are your enemies. I know what it feels like when one more thing gets added to the load you carry and people think you should just smile and quietly bear it. I know because you are me and I am you.


How do I keep going when things are so bad? Instinctively I think we all want to survive what ever is attacking us; even if it is our own bodies and minds. We have to fight with ourselves. We have to fight letting our negative thoughts devour the light in our souls. We have to protect the tiny spark that resides deep inside of us. We have to feed that spark. It keeps our soul alive when everything around and in us says give up. So, how do I keep going? I feed that tiny flame, that spark, one good thing each day.


What do I mean? Ok, here is what I figured out. Each day I have to find one thing that brings me joy. Then, for that day, that is my reason for living that day. Take for example my love of sunrises. Any day I get up early enough to see a sunrise I get to be blessed by mother nature’s awesome display. There is no way I can not feel the joy and blessings bestowed on me when faced with such beauty. Watching sunrises reminds me that each day is a blank slate that the sun paints with its light. It reminds me that I can do whatever I want with that day. I can spread laughter. I can help someone when they are down. I can wipe someone’s tears. I can hold someone when they are afraid. I can bring light into my world by doing so many little things. I can feed that spark by finding joy in things great and small.


Where can you find joy? Joy can be found in all things. Whether they are big or small; they are soul food. Joy can be found everywhere. It’s in the first breath of a newborn kitten. It’s in the laughter of a 80 year old man. It’s in your love of your husband or wife. It’s in listening to music and connecting with it’s message. It’s in finding a group of warriors who understand you. It’s in the first blooms of spring. It’s in a summer storm. It’s in seeing the night sky. It’s everywhere if we only look and sometimes joy finds us without even really trying.


Why am I talking about joy and fire in our souls? Well, it’s like this if we let the fire die and have no joy in our lives, it means we give up. Without joy and the fire to fight we become a shadow of who we were meant to be. We never fulfill our purpose. We leave our job here undone.


Why does it matter? It matters because who says you were not put here to do great things. You might be here to save a life. You might be here so someone doesn’t feel so alone in their journey. You might be here to bring a child into the world who will be a great leader. You might be put here to create music that touches and feeds the soul. You might be here to love someone who feels unlovable. You might be here to save me.


So, what is the purpose of this message to you? The reason I am writing you this letter is to issue you a challenge. Yep, I am here to challenge you to find a reason to live. I am here to challenge you to find the joy in each day. I am here to challenge you to feed the spark inside you.


You can do this! I want you to find one thing each day that brings you joy and gives you reasons to fight for another day. It doesn’t matter what it is; big or small; if it brings you joy and feeds the spark it doesn’t matter. Remember, I am you and you are me. If we walk this journey together we can do this. I got your back. Our joy can be anything. A sunrise, a baby’s cry, a flower, laughing with a friend, having a low pain day, or even reading a poem. Joy is everywhere. Find it! Enjoy it! Feed the spark so it feeds the warrior in you. Feed it so when the warrior needs to stand up and battle you can look back at those joyful memories and use it for fuel. One moment, one second, one note of music, one smile ,one hand holding yours, one fellow warrior saying here I am; these are where joy lives. Find them! Fight for them! I DARE YOU!





Linda’s letters is a chronological series. Start with letter 1 here.

You can read letter #5 here.

Linda’s Letters: Letter #3


Warning: Explicit content


February 18, 2016


Hey you,


Yes, I mean you. I thought I saw you crying again. You are hiding away again. Running away is impossible. What you are running from is inside you. You can’t get away, your demons are you.


How do I know? Because I am you and you are me. I live with the demons crowding my head and eating my heart every day, every hour, every minute. I’ve tried running. I’ve tried drinking them away. I’ve tried smoking them into oblivion. I tried cutting the pain away. I even tried to end it all. All of these failed; and my demons laughed through it all.


Maybe it’s time for you and I to face our demons. If we do this together maybe, our demons will be the ones cringing in the corner instead of us. Yes, this will hurt. Yes, there will be tears. Yes, there will be anger. Yes, there will be fear and terror. Yes, there might be some yelling and cussing. However, after all this there will hopefully be acceptance where there was guilt, self love where there was self hate, peace where there was turmoil, and calm where there was only anger.


How do we do this? Together we face each demon. Invite them to sit down for a drink and talk. We look at them as an adult determined to claim their self. We show them love, hold them if needed, yell and scream, compromise with them. They can stay but they will no longer rule.


Are you ready for this? Just remember you and I are the same. I am you and you are me. I will never abandon you. I am stuck to you like glue. You are never and will never be alone. I got your back! One demon at a time….we got this! Here we go!


Where do we start? The beginning is always the best. I grew up in a family that was dysfunctional and abusive. My mom’s dad was an alcoholic. Mom’s brother was a Vietnam vet who was a drug abuser and alcoholic. My parents fought like cats and dogs. My father called use little cocksuckers and little bastards when he was mad or frustrated. My mother was the caretaker of the family. She was always trying to fix it all to her own detriment.


So what was the demon in all this? I learned to be the caretaker. I learned to use alcohol and drugs to mask problems instead of facing them. I learned if you were mad or frustrated it was OK to belittle and berate people. I learned how to have a dysfunctional relationship and not a healthy one.


What do we do with this demon? How do we vanquish her? We don’t. We forgive our family for the things they did; but we never forget. Form this demon we learn what not to do. We learn how not to treat people. We learn it is better to face our problems instead of letting them fester. We are all shaped by our families but we don’t have to follow the mold they made for us. Break out! Be yourself! Be the you that is that is better, healthier, and more loving. You are not a product of your family’s failures.


Whew! One down and so many more to face.


Who do we face next? I want to face the 7 year old girl who screams in my head. “Why! Why me? What did I do wrong? Why can’t they see how hurt I am? I must deserve this because I did something bad. This is my punishment.”


If I could I would wrap that little girl up in my arms and protect her from all the harm inflicted on her. However, I can’t change what’s been done; but I can talk to her. So, Sissy I know you’re here and listening. You did nothing wrong. What happened was not your fault. It wasn’t a punishment and he was a very sick person to pick you to abuse. The family never saw what was happening because they never dealt with something of this nature and a lot of them were tied up in other family drama. I know if they did see it they would have protected you. You would have gotten help sooner. Please never ever believe you are alone again. I am here! I will hold you if that’s what you need. I will listen to you rage and wipe your tears. I will be your shield when the nightmares come for you. Just reach out your hand and I will be here.


Do you hear that? Neither did anyone else. The 15 year old Sissy who started drinking because she hurt so much inside that she just wanted to quite the memories; like her Uncle Jim. If it was good enough to help him, maybe it would quite the demons inside her. Everyday, before school she would drink a pint. She had to. She couldn’t face the world sober. At lunch she would sneak more down her gullet. Every evening at home she would hide in her room sipping the liquid nirvana. It never solved anything because when she would sober up the problems would still be there.


If I could go back I would sit beside the troubled teen, put an arm around her shoulder and tell her alcohol never solved a thing. It hides, it masks, it lies when it whispers just a little more will fix it. I would tell her to talk to anyone. Tell them what happened. It was not your fault! When he told you it would break the family apart if you told; he was emotionally blackmailing you. He needs help, you need help. The family will be OK. Just get help.


Did I get help? No, I was too ashamed, too afraid, and too pissed. At this same time my family was a freaking mess. My cousin, who was all of about 12 killed himself. I remember the first line of his suicide note. “ I am tired of being a fuck up in everyone’s eyes.” He was buried with his favorite stuffed animal… Gizmo. At 15 years old I wondered if he found his peace. I wondered if it was worth it. Even with all the pain it caused me and my family, my thoughts slowly began to fester and his escape started to look good to me.


It was just before I was sixteen that I took the hardest hit. I was kind of seeing a young man named Chris. We had been friends for awhile before we started seeing each other. So I knew his history. I knew I could lose him at any time. A month before my birthday he called and told me it was back. The cancer was worse than before and they didn’t think he would make it. He was what held me together. I lost Chris 3 weeks later. I totally went nuts. I drank more and took chances that I knew would hurt me or kill me if they went bad. I turned into a 16 year old who now had a license. I now had a broader scope of shit I could get into and I did.


About this time I was working with my mom helping to take care of an elderly lady. I worked nights on the weekends. One night my mother called to ask me something that rocked my world and brought me to my knees. She said my baby brother had told her he had been sexually abused by my oldest brother. She asked me if I believed him. I said yes. She said really? I said yes. She said she didn’t know what to think. She kept after me asking why I believed him. I finally snapped and said because the bastard did it to me. She went silent and started to cry. She then said she would see me when I got home. I died inside that night.


What happened next? It all came to a breaking point for me. I lost Chad. I lost Chris. I failed my little brother. I was supposed to protect him. I should have told. I hated myself, I hurt, I wanted to die. So, on a cold November night I stole my dad’s gun. I made a few phone calls saying goodbye. Leaving messages when I knew they wouldn’t be home. I wrote a note for my family and hid it so they wouldn’t find it too soon. I drove out to the lake. I decided to do it. This was my last day on earth. I was tired of all the pain I felt, all the self hate and guilt I had burning me inside. Today, I would find peace. I would find absolution.


What stopped me? Well, there I was sitting on the same log Chris and I use to with a bottle of Jack in one hand and the .44 caliber handgun in my lap. I heard a noise and looked around and there stood Chris’s sister. She had tears pouring down her face and was out of breath. She just kept gasping the word Don’t. At first I was so pissed and yelled at her to leave. She kept saying no. She started talking saying that Chris wouldn’t want me to do this; how mad he would be at me for giving up, for giving in. She told me how much it would hurt her if I did this. How bad it would hurt my family. I kept saying I didn’t fucking care. I was so tired of the pain. I was tired of the guilt. She got me to talk….well, more like pace and yell what was going on in my head. I yelled and screamed the most horrendous things that had been done to me. All the while I kept drinking and waving the gun around. I put it to my head and she would yell Don’t! We went through this numerous times. I was crying when I fell to my knees drained, drunk, done. I put the gun to my head, just behind my ear, like Chad. She kneeled in front of me and said if I was going to do this she was going to stay with me so I would die alone. I cocked the gun and stared into her eyes, tears pouring down both of our faces and she whispered one last time “Please, Don’t”. I started to squeeze the trigger and looking into her eyes I saw the hurt and disappointment; I saw that she believed she had failed her brother. It broke me. I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t cause her this pain. I couldn’t leave her with the pain of failure, of the guilt that would eat at her. Her pain was my savior that night. I lowered the gun and she took it from me and tossed it away and we clung to one another crying for what seemed like forever. We talked for hours. She helped me see that while my pain was real and valid, killing myself would cause more pain to all those I knew and loved. How that, maybe, someday I would help someone by talking about my pain. That’s the night I quit drinking. I went home, put the gun back and told no one till now about that night.

What happened after all that? Well, mom and dad put me in counseling for the years of sexual abuse. I want for almost a year before I was strong enough to face down my abuser. I asked him to meet me at a park and yelled and screamed at him how I hated him. What a dirty, mother fucking, asshole he was to hurt me and our little brother. He stood and took it all. He never gave one excuse for what he did. He only agreed with me and kept saying sorry. I walked away lighter, feeling no longer a victim. The transformation to being a survivor had begun. By the time I turned 18, I had learned he was abused by others himself. He never had gotten help before mom put us all in counseling. For years I avoided him except at family get togethers. When I was 20 I saw how he was punishing him self; slowly killing himself by eating himself to death. To complete my journey to a survivor I forgave him and told him while I hated what happened I still loved him and didn’t want him to die.


In my early 20’s I smoked enough pot to probably get a whole third world country high, had a disastrous 1 1\2 year marriage, finally accepted who I was, came out, and met my life partner. I quit smoking pot for her. She is the reason I live now. She’s my reason to fight, my reason to stick around when the pain is too much.


What is my point in telling you all of this? Remember, I am you and you are me. So listen closely. If you are here reading my journey, you yourself are a survivor. It doesn’t matter if our stories are exactly the same. You are here and made it through your own storms. Faced your demons and came out the other side. Yes, it will have left scars. Yes, the demons will come back and bite us in the ass sometimes. Yes, it will hurt. Yes, it will feel so real that you’d swear you are right back in that hell. Nightmares, fear, and tears will happen. However, sit them demons down, have a drink with them, get to know them again. Then let them fuckers know they will not rule your life. You are a bad ass warrior! You have faced the fire, looked into the abyss and came home each time. You are strong enough to handle this. If not reach out your hand and I will be there. I will not let you sit in the abyss with a gun to your head. I will walk beside you, sit with my arm around you, wipe your tears, anything. You just have to reach out. I’ve got your back! I am you and you are me; we are one and the same. Together we will conquer, we will survive, we will become stronger warriors. We will win!



Linda’s letters is a chronically series. Did you miss the beginning? Start here with Letter #1.

Read Linda’s 4th letter here.

Linda’s Letters: Letter #2


WARNING: Explicit content


Hey you,

Yes, I mean you. It’s me again. I see you struggling. I see your desperation. You’re at the end of your rope. You don’t know if you want to go on living in this hell. You think no one hears your cries. You think that no one really cares if you live or die.

You are wrong! I hear you! Remember I am you and you are me. I am the 16 year old girl who sits on the lake shore with a gun in hand. I am the mother of 3 who has pills stashed. I am the 30 year old man who thinks about driving his car into on coming traffic. I am the grandmother who thinks about sitting in her garage and letting the car run and just slipping away quietly.

You think I can’t understand the demons that you fight? I was a 7 year old child who was sexually molested for years. Everyday I faced my abuser wondering if it was going to happen again. Everyday I prayed for someone to save me. It never happened. I lived in fear for years. I still live with the shame, guilt, and self hate that burrowed into my soul. The darkness that swallowed the child haunts the adult. I am the teenager who turned to alcohol and drugs to numb the cries of pain that poured from her depths. I was the 16 year old who put a gun to her head. I was the 21 year old who smoked so much pot that I couldn’t remember what day it was. I was the 22 year old who was surrounded by gang gun fire. I was the 23 year old who finally accepted who I was meant to be and came out. I was the 25 year old diagnosed with arthritis and told it would only get worse. I was the 30 year old who was looked down on because I had to walk with a cane. I was the 38 year old whose disease progressed to the point that walking without braces and a walker was no longer possible. I am now the 42 year old who lives in so much pain that each day is a decision if it is worth it to keep going. Our demons may not be exactly the same but I have fallen into the abyss and live with my demons.

Why am I telling you all this? I don’t want you to sit in the abyss alone when I am here too. You don’t have to flail about in the darkness. Take my hand. Together we can be stronger than the demons that haunt us. Just like that night years ago when my friend spent hours talking the gun out of my hand, I want to be there for you. If you can be my light when I fall down the rabbit hole, maybe I can be the voice of reason for you when your demons call.

When your mind and body can take no more and you think the only solution is to end it all…..reach out your hand. I am here! I will never leave. I will always answer your call. I will carry you as long as you need. I will hold you as tight as possible. I will wipe your tears and calm your fears.

Who am I? I am you and you are me! Deep inside, down in the darkest depths is where I reside. I see your demons. I live beside them. All you have to do is reach out your hand and pull me to you. I am your inner fire. I am your inner warrior. I am your heart and soul. I am the very essence of you. I am love.

Love? Yes, love. I am your love of a sunrise. Your love of a child’s laughter. Your love of your friends. The love of your husband, wife, and partner. I am the love you feel for a baby panda. The love of a butterfly. I am love and love can save us.

How can love save us? Each day we choose to go on for a reason. Whether it be for friends, family, our pets, our children, or our pure stubborn cussedness. It is a love of these things that give us the will to fight for another day. It is for the chance to find love in all its forms that we believe in the endless possibilities life holds.

The bottom line is this: You will have days where everything is against you. Your mind is shattered and you body battered. You will fall so far into the abyss that you see no chance of recovery. However, if you just reach out your hand you will find love. A friend’s love, a pet’s love, an uncle’s love, a mother’s love, a fellow spoonie’s love. Love will light your way back from the edge of hell. Love will give you hope. Love will light the spark in you. Love will fight for you when you can’t. Love will give you strength to find your inner warrior. Just remember that the strongest warrior needs a shoulder to lean on sometimes. Find the love that surrounds you and you will find your strength.

From: Me



Linda’s Letters is a chronological series. You can read Letter number one here if you’ve missed it.

For Linda’s Letter #3 go here.

Linda’s Letters: Letter #1


Hey you,

Yes, I mean you! I see you struggling, I know your pain. You think no one could ever know what it takes to get you through the day, what it takes for you to even get out of bed. I know your struggle, I know your pain. It’s real. You are not alone.

How do I know? Well, I am you. We are one and the same. I know of the pain that drags you into the deepest recesses of hell and makes you question if life is really worth all this. I am the young man who sits next to you in the doctors office praying this one will help him when so many have ignored his symptoms. I am the mother in the scooter trying to shop with two children in tow. I am the teenager who can’t get the energy to go be with friends because her doctors will not believe her because she’s to young to feel like this. I am the individual who sits in the dark with a gun in hand saying enough. I AM YOU!

How did I see past the mask? I have worn the fake smiles. Laughed and joked when all I really wanted was to curl up and die. I have said “I Am Fine.” more times than I can count. I have pushed myself past my breaking point to be and do what others think I should do. I know all the lines and all the ways to cheat and hide how I really am on the inside.

Daily you wonder if this life is worth all this pain. You wonder if you will ever feel normal again. You wonder if you will ever find someone who will love you with all your issues. You wonder if this is what will kill you. You wonder when the doctors will figure out how to fix you. You wonder if anyone hears your cry for help.

I hear you! I am you! Life right now maybe shit; but it can and will hold beauty again. Someday you will find the one person that gives you hope and love. They will give you a reason to live. They will hear your cries and wipe your tears. They will stand up to the doctors and not let them throw you away as if you were nothing. They will bring unimaginable beauty to each day.

Who is this person and where can you find them? Get up and walk into your bathroom. Stand facing your sink. What do you see? You are who you’ve been looking for this whole time. You are your own saviour! You are a kick ass warrior! You have the strength, heart, compassion, and grit to face anything. You will keep walking forward even as this disease weighs you down. Each day will provide the chance that answers will come.

Why am I talking to you? Well, the answer is simple. Even the strongest warrior needs a shoulder to lean on from time to time. We need other warriors to help us along the way. Some will make you laugh when you need it. Some will kick you in the ass to get you to do the things you know you should. Some will come along and give you hope just when you have none. And yet others will come along and cheer you on in your accomplishments. They will become your family, your tribe.

The bottom line is this: you are not alone. You never have been. We have been here for you the whole time. You see us now because you are us and we are you. You reached out and grasped the warrior in you. Stand tall, stand proud! You are a spoonie warrior!!! You have a never say die flame that burns inside. Yes, you have bad days. Yes, you will scream, cry and shout “Why me?”. In the end you will pick yourself up ,with the help of friends, family, and fellow warriors, dust yourself off and face another battle with courage and a fierce will to live pain free.

Just remember…I know you! You are me. You are one bad ass, never say die, strong, courageous, ass kicking, beautiful mess, spoonie warrior! And I love you!

From: Me.



Read Linda’s second letter here.