There was a time, since 2004 after the war, that my husband was nowhere to be found. His physical body was around as much as he could stand, but really he was not here. I experienced this effect once we were settled in Austin after being discharged from the military. Suddenly I started feeling suffocated out of this life. We moved closer to my family, whom I quickly realized made me more miserable than happy with their ways of making me feel like I didn't belong. In conjunction with my husband leaving more and more each day: checked out of reality, randomly dissapearing, and emotionally detatched. I was raising four kids, literally, alone. My family was fighting me with every decision I made while I struggled to put my daughter in all of the therapy available to help her with her disability, and raise her 3 siblings. Slowly I melted away. I began to hide, isolate, and detach as much as I could get away with. I was caught between a really bad situation at home with a struggling husband who was unknowingly very sick, and an extended family that, really, did not want me. They say with their words they are there for you but don't back it up with their actions. I felt I had little choice, I could continue with this underlying deathwish that started at the age of 11 or 12 filled with temporal thinking and depression, or find a way to stay alive and cope until I figured out an answer to my situation.
I found a way to stay alive, it involved being heard, it gave me someone to talk to, it returned to me a feeling of being connected and a sense of belonging. It echoed back to me sentiments of understanding.
I found you. And it saved me. My dalliances with writing my story to you slowly helped me return to myself, one letter at a time.