CariJo, I've been thinking of you so much. I hope that you are coping alright. Please check in with us.
carijo ...has also been on my mind since i read her post....the grief is so fresh for her and we all know what she has to get thru to the point we are...i hope she stays in touch with us often
Hey guys. Thanks so much for missing me.
I have been too busy to grieve. God provided a job for me to help my mother pay rent, as the financial situation is precarious. Those of you who read my other post may have picked up on the way my father has treated us since Dan's death. He was the one saying to stop grieving after 3 weeks, that "the Evil One" is getting ahold of you if you cry hard or question. (Which is some kind of defense; he's a workaholic, and his son meant everything to him). Well, we moved here to help him, the business he and Dan had was (is) out of control. We made this decision in the height of our grief, when my mom's important corporate job tried to make her go back after only 2 business days off - even before the funeral! >( So we come here to grieve with him, he offers us both jobs. He needs us, or so we thought, because without Dan....
Yet, after about 2 weeks we began to realize that... this is horrible, the way he's used the tragedy to ... control us. He offered her a comparable salary and cut it in half, she can't even work efficiently because of what a DISFUNCTIONAL working environment it is, and his lecturing, and here's the kicker: my father, who is worth $500,000 but lives in what can only be called voluntary poverty, inherited and absorbed my brother's $37,00+ tuition money and assets, that the young man had earned and worked for since he was 10 or 12. Now, Dan would be rolling in his grave if he knew that Dad was making mom work 60+ hours for less than $500 when he knows that her rent is $1,000.
He fired me and I, having no car, immediately landed a lucrative job in a smoky den of sin and immorality (I'm a cocktail waitress/bartender in a busy casino). So I just graduated college with a liberal arts degree and I knew I would have to do something like this to get through graduate school, and I must say: I'm making 3 times the wage my father paid me, which was minumum.
I'm also proud to say I stood up to him, as he doesn't seem to think holding me hostage while enraged and telling me I could go jump in front of a bus was that bad of a thing to do. He wants to blame me and continue to fight. "No", I said. "We're not talking this one out. Please, try to live a long life because I need space from you. You set me so far back in the healing process that for my own well being I must say No. What I have to say about the way you've behaved since Dan's death will not sit well with you".
"Just say it" *sneer*
"No. Everyone deserves the choice to live free of conflict. I know this is hurts you...I love you, goodbye. " and what I wanted to say was that he deserves the pain, ain't no way I can stand for how he's controlling my mom, but I cant say that or he'll fire her. Then again, he's a 50 year old man, he's not going to change. I'm still so confused - I just know that the injustice and his tyranny steams me, and I cannot bear it any longer.
We keep praying that she will find a new job too, and fast. We don't know how much longer she can bite her mutilated tongue - she's been doing a great job of eggshell walking - he could fire her on a whim. It's hard for her to find a job when he requires her presence, her position which he initially called "operations manager" went to "executive assistant" and is now "secretary". I am not exaggerating. She runs for his breakfast and lunch, because his rotten refridgerator had to be thrown out when my brother died.
And still he thinks he was the perfect father. "I always gave you everything I thought you should have". When I needed him, the one time, to loan me money to get away from my abusive boyfriend, who is one of his best friends and who he gets along with better than me, he refused. He stressed I needed to to it on my own or I would never be a ... worthwhile woman. So I failed at that, seeing as hwo I was dedicated to maintaining my high GPA and minimum wage don't pay the bills part-time. Ever since I chose a roof over my head (I moved back in with said ex 3 days before the tragedy) my father has ... sort of freaked out, about making sure I get nothing I didn't earn. To the extent he's selling my brother's cars, won't even keep them around for me to have the time to earn. To the extreme extent that he keeps talking about writing a will - since I'm his only child there's only one reason he would do that.
And finally, finally after all that bull**** we come to Danny. I miss him so much the pain still comes in crushing waves. On a spiritual level I don't think we were misguided by coming here - putting our family back together and healing would glorify Him. Dan would have wanted his father to change over this, to stop pushing us away. Dan loved him despite the abuse. That is so hard for me to work through right now. I'm so mad that Dan had to put up with that crap. I think it should stop. I don't know why I'm being forced to punish my father, as it were, a scary thing, but I fear I am. I keep praying and talking to Dan. And writing. But now I am starting to find things, remember things, and I feel so guilty. Over small things I can't change, that he knew were superficial. Ignoring him when Derek was being mean and sort of turning on him. I just remember his innocent hurt look... "Jeez, Cari". Hurt sooooooooo bad. Like you can't breathe. I wonder why God allows suffering. I wish I could hug him again. I miss him so much.
I want to go to church... we just found the perfect one, that I think we were led to, for my mom to network, to worship in the way we feel comfortable. But now I have to work every Sunday morning in that far from holy atmosphere. When I pray as I just did, when it gets too hard to want to live without him I ask to be relieved... and sometimes I am lifted from that low place. I want to see my brothers again so badly, that I must give myself to God, because without the assurance that there is more I am certain I will go crazy. I can't bear it alone, I just can't.
This has been a life changing experience for me. I am turning into a different person, sharpened by my burden. I was partying, even partying with my kid brother just over a month ago, settling for the SOS. Giving in, throwing in the towel again at 22. Now.... now I am truly on my own, in a peaceful home with my mom and best friend, where we two support eachother as best we can, as only we can. After a month I the situation has changed - perhaps the fight for survival is good for the soul.
I want to reply to the thread about time but ironically, I haven't the time. Going back to work what feels like SO SOON to me and putting it out of my mind for 8-12 hours a day is hard... but I'm amazed to find how strong I am, for the first time without Derek. I don't like this "moving on" feeling. I feel compelled to get something done, to honor his memory. Help someone. Reach out. Make a Dan website.
Gosh, CariJo. So much to deal with at a such a young, tender age. I'm so very sorry.
It is probably doing you a world of good to be writing like you are. You need to be able to release all of this anger, frustration, and hurt that you are experiencing.
I think it is a good idea that you just stay away from your father now. I'm so sorry that your mom has to deal with him and he is not treating her fairly. Maybe something better will become available for her.
Don't be ashamed of your job. You are making an honest living and as long as you keep your morals high and just do your job, you are not doing anything wrong.
I wish so much I knew more to tell you and I wish that I could help you and your mom. The pain of losing her sons and your brothers is enough pain for a lifetime and it's such a shame that you have other major problems to have to deal with. I know that everything seems to be crashing down on you two now, but try to remember that things will get better in time. Just keep leaning on God and He will carry you and your mom through all of this. It might not be easy, but you will get through it.
I truly believe that the hardships that we are dealt in this life help to form us into stronger people and teach us valuable lessons that God somehow God feels we need to learn even though we can't understand why.
I also believe that our suffering here on earth helps purify us and brings us closer to God. Have you ever noticed how when things are going really well, people tend to drift from God? It's when the storm hits that we usually run to Him like the little children that He wants us to be. He wants us to depend on Him.
Okay, I didn't mean to get wrapped up in all of this, but continue to draw your strength from God and your sweet mom.
Do what you have to do now and maybe in time, your dad will come around and realize what he is doing.
Take care, sweetie. Please keep in touch. We do care about you.
I'm feeling so sad about Dan. Now that a little time has gone by, in some ways it hurts more. I guess the reality is starting to set in. How I can't ever see him again or hug him. It's just not fair - I loved him more than my own self, you know. And it's so hard to work and continue my own life, to do the things I must. I have so much less time to grieve now, that when I do have time to myself it's always devoted to thinking about him. I try to read, the Bible or a novel, as it's about the only thing that helps me escape from the depression.
How can this be, how can this be. I wish I had a family of my own, my own little baby son to love right now. I feel so alone.
I am getting kind of discouraged; it's so hard to believe everything is ok, that we will be reunited in Heaven. I know that won't be the same. Last summer we built a level terrace at our cabin in the mountains. I was proud of my little brother: he was a man, a hard worker. He put his back into that shoevel and we worked together, transferring rocks uphill for the retaining wall. He cast a shadow and he sweat, he was thirsty and he was burned by the sun. Later that day we saw wild horses. We picked wild strawberries, which are tiny. Dan went fishing, and I snuck upstream ahead of him and secreted canned corn into the deep pools, so that the fish wouldn't bite. We spent time on the shore of Beauty Lake soaking in the mountains and the sun. He was a wonderful youg man - the best. He had so much going for him - much more than I do. He really didn't deserve to have his life cut so short.