Tell Me the Truth

A few of you noticed yesterday evening that I had changed the theme of my blog. I didn’t intend to permanently change it to that look, it was just the last one I was messing with before I left work for the day. A couple of my Fat Followers commented that they liked it but maybe they were just being nice.

I wanted something new for the new year. I don’t know how to design things. I’d like a theme like the Facebook banner. I could put one of my photos in, probably of the beach, add the title and my blogroll, which will be updated today.  And Voyla! there’s a blog. Any ideas?

I also appreciated the comments I received on my personality and how the theme conveyed that with the springiness and sunshine. That’s really nice and I’m glad that that is how I come across. I am really happy in my life and do my best to help those in my life be happy.


That being said, I don’t want anyone to think that I am Pollyanna. I have had dark days, dark years which I’m sure is what makes me appreciate how really wonderful my life is today.

For most of my life, I was a defensive and insecure person. I hid behind good grades and a strong wall that “protected” me from being vulnerable.  I acted pulled together (some would say bitchy) and self-deprecating. In reality, I didn’t think I was capable of much and was riddled with anxiety. But I was funny.

It didn’t help in 1992, when my fiancé disappeared seven weeks before our wedding only to be found 19 years later (a year ago). I had some dark years in my marriage but also very good ones. I’m not going into that here, only it wasn’t meant to be.

My father died in October, 2005. I have sensory memories from the year before he died…sights, sounds, smells that I wish I had never experienced, but I never would have missed. My father’s death was one of the most miraculous experiences of my life. A couple of days before he died, I was at the house with my mom and he was in a hospital bed in the family room. Not hooked up to any machines but failing. I believe it was a Wednesday. He was in and out of consciousness and talking to his sister, Anita, who died in the 70s. I sat with him and talked to him.  At one point he smiled and said something like, “Good girl, Murph.”  Dad? Are you talking to Murphy? “Yes, she’s right there.” And I’m looking around for a photo of our German Shepherd Murphy, who died in 1984. No photo and he was pointing to where she was but I couldn’t see her.

That day my mom and I sat for hours with my dad who was truly in the throes of death. He was squeezing our hands so tight and telling us how beautiful we were and how he had to go. I have never cried like that, fountains, waterfalls of tears poured out of me and my mom. And then he would just lie back and be out. I let go of his hand at one point to throw my snot and tear-drenched tissue in the fireplace and he looked at me and said, “are you crying?!” And I said yes and he told me to knock it off. Now that was my dad!

It went on for hours and at the end he was still alive! I looked at my mom, are you kidding me?? And then I said, “he’s only mostly dead!” He finally died a few days later but it was amazing. No machines, no nothing.

I didn’t cry at the funeral. I just didn’t cry. Why cry? He was 81 and had congestive heart failure. I didn’t want him living like that. Might as well get on with it. Get through the holidays, have Thanksgiving and Christmas. Move on.

In January 2006, I started crying. I didn’t mean to but I couldn’t help it. I cried about everything. I cried at the thought of leaving the house. It would take me hours of crying and planning to go do errands. The girls were 5 and 7 and I would get up in the morning and get them ready for school. I would tell myself all I had to do was drive them to school and then I could come right back home. And I would get in bed and not move for hours.

At one point, in a ten-day period, I drank so much that I threw up 7 out of those 10 days.  There appeared to be some sort of problem.


I made an appointment with my doctor. I went in crying and with my hand out, give me something to make this stop. Thank you Lexapro. And I found a therapist and I started working. My mom would take the girls on my therapy days because I would be so worn out and my head would hurt so badly from crying that I would need to rest after my hour of therapy. And I was very lucky that I had my mom and Mitch (my ex-husband) to care for me and the girls.

I’m writing all this because I’m here on the other side. And the other side is really good. I learned that my soul and ego need tending to. That instead of deflecting compliments, I need to take them in and let them water my roots so that I continue to grow into a healthy, happy person. I learned that time really does heal. I learned it’s okay to be vulnerable and to be hurt.

In the end, I really like me and I enjoy being me. I hope that I give good advice and set a good example for my daughters and am able to help out my family and friends with my experience. Wisdom is hard won.

So do I keep the sunshine? or does someone know how I can just put a favorite picture of mine in the masthead and call it good?

40 thoughts on “Tell Me the Truth

  1. Le Clown

    This is a theme I never really liked, nor did I particularly liked the other one either. However, the previous one did fit your personality more than this one… Have you played and experimented with other themes? I’d love to see something that fits you, something clear, that breathes, and one that gives focus to the content, and not to the aesthetic of the blog…

  2. hahaha! You crack me up. I would basically like anything you put up here, pastel or primary colors. Whatever you do, it just seems to work, Mags. It’s because your personality is a winner and so the decoration is superfluous.

    Tough stuff to live through. You not only talk the talk, but you’ve clearly walked it. The scenes with your father confirm everything I believe. This same thing happened to my brother in-law as his body gave out. He had a conversation with his deceased parents who, I’m sure, were their to collect him. He was so happy to see them! I know when we die it’s just a physical death and that our spirit lives and just crosses over. We’ll see everyone again, very soon. 🙂
    I love that you wrote this. It’s so good and bonding for all of us to see each other’s struggles and pain. No need for any of us to ever feel alone in the dark – we have each other to lean on.
    I’m so glad you’re on the other side, in the light. 🙂

  3. JackieP

    Great post, very honest. As for putting a favorite picture as a header it just depends on what design you use. If it accepts custom headers no biggie. Just put in your favorite pic and use it as your header. You can do that in your dashboard.

  4. Amy Hinrichs

    I’m so glad I read this post because I learned a lot about you. I could tell from your writing that you were not the same M I knew in high school (although I liked that M very much.) I just did not know that you had done so much hard work to un-earth yourself. I’m proud of you. I had completely forgotten about your fiance thing. I remember your ring was amethyst. It’s good to be softer and more vulnerable. I’m glad you are funny and happy now, instead of just funny. Love you.

  5. I developed gripping agoraphobia when my mother died (15 years ago)…I don’t remember most of that summer and the only thing that helped me from disappearing was being dragged around Oregon with my son’s baseball team. Friends tell me stories about those trips and I remember none of it, except for the episodes of overeating to get me through some days….hence the chubbsters you know today. In her last days my mother seemed to be talking to and seeing my dad, the love of her life, who died when she was 31 years old. I’m sure her life was very different from the one she imagined after that happened and the thought that she would be with him made me happy. I didn’t cry for my dad until I was a young adult, when I started having a lots of dreams about him…I don’t think I really knew what was happening when I was 7.

  6. The take-away I got from this blog post dear Maggie is that your daughters sure are lucky! They know that when times are tough for them, if they feel out of control, they can tell mom because she’s been there and understands. They’ve watched you help your ex get help too. I repeat, lucky lucky daughters to have you.

    I changed my blog theme once and my readers dumped all over me fast. I keep thinking I’ll change, I try one and keep coming back to what I have had for two years. It’s kinda like being married for a long time – newer sleeker models come out, but the old ones have character and feeling.

  7. unfetteredbs

    I read this post before and I came back again. I like this theme so much better. It suits your sassy self.
    I like the way you write Maggie. always truthful, a little flip, funny and serious. All at the same time no less. (excuse my poor sentence structure here)

  8. I think you got your pic up that you wanted and all this pastel shit is gone! hehe. Thank you so much for your blog. Its like it popped out when I needed it most! Thanks for spilling your guts on here. Mine are spilling out right now all over the place and although I am trudging through…I am crying a lot of the time right now. I miss my kids…its sucks so much that so much of my identity was in being a mom and that as they grow older it seems to dissipate who I am which sounds dum but its true. I have part of my life where I want it and part where I am miserable. It was encouraging to read that you have turned things around and that there is hope!!! Love you and love that we found each other in this crazy place!!! Keep on doin what you do girl.

    1. I’m sorry you’re crying doll. I know what you mean about the mom stuff. Your identity isn’t dissipating, it’s evolving and you’ve got one big evolution going on! I know you will land on your feet! xoxox

      1. yeah…its all in a days work…evolving/crying/eating/sleeping…thanks Maggie!!! Just needed some validation I guess. Not crying today…yay!! Had an awesome valentines…thanks for the love!! you are in my thoughts with your busyness and chit…hang in there!!!!

  9. Maggie this was a beautiful post( I’ll leave the blog design discussion to people who know what they’re talking about). I was particularly taken by your father greeting your German Shepherd. We often had messages from our dogs ( 17 of them ) when they died, but I always wondered if the love bond was un-ending, – it certainly is for me- so your father greeting Murch, was a wonderful validation…
    Yes the work you’ve done is something that stays with you for eternity, you can never lose that wisdom… Elizabeth Kubler Ross said beautiful people don’t just happen, that they have to live and suffer and overcome, and it’s that which gives them their beauty….

    1. Elizabeth Kubler Ross was a smart chick. thank you for your kind words. My mom’s dog stayed with her for years after he died until she got a new one. I’m glad to know they are waiting for us.

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