What the Hell Happened to Chloe?

by Chloe Jeffreys · 56 comments

in Marriage, Romance

New Years Eve 2011

Good question.

Herein lies the story that stands between me and everything else I try to write. I have decided that I simply must get it out of the way first before I can go any further.

There’s an old saying: To assume anything makes an ass out of you and me.

Therefore I am going to ask you to hold off on your assumptions for a time and just listen.

Today I went to therapy. It was the talk therapist, Stan, not the pelvis-thrusting Jungian.

Truthfully, I never go see Allen the Jungian by myself. He scares me a little (or a lot). His techniques are unorthodox, but he’s helped us so much that I can’t fault him. Just don’t expect me to be talking about those techniques any time soon.

When I talk about my therapist just know I’m talking about Stan, not Allen. We just won’t talk about Allen. I figure I’ve lost enough readers so far this year that I don’t need to alienate the last eight I have left.

I first met Stan on January 4th in his very old, dingy little office located in one of the few two story buildings in town; right above the Papa Murphy’s Take “N” Bake Pizza.

That morning I had called every therapist in the phone book–except the one who told our son that it was okay to use drugs and the other one who committed adultery with the worship leader from our former church–and Stan was the first one who returned my call. He was willing to see me that night.

At 7pm I climbed the steep, mildewed staircase plucked right out of an old horror movie and stumbled into his office. I hadn’t showered, slept or eaten since New Year’s Eve. (Oh, and I just might have gone on a raging bender on January 2nd that just might have ended when my son-in-law came and took away the guns and my Ambien, but I’m not ready to talk about that yet.)

On January 3rd, before I called Stan, my friend Kelly stopped by. After surveying the “alleged” property damage strewn across the front lawn and blowing down the driveway, she suggested that maybe I was over-reacting just a tad.

I could barely hear her calm voice over the hurricane raging in my mind, but since she had been present at the party I felt I could trust her opinion. I remember straining to listen to her as I floated somewhere outside of my body. Thank God she came.  After Kelly’s impassioned speech for sanity and mercy, I called my husband and asked him to come back home.  He agreed, with the proviso that I promise not to knife him in his sleep, and that we both go to counseling. I readily agreed.

So on January 4th, there in Stan’s office, I poured out my grief and my shock while he quietly listened, handing out Kleenex like a man lets out the line of a life preserver. By the end of the hour I thought just maybe I might make it another day.

Stan suggested I might want to try eating or sleeping, but I knew that wasn’t going to happen. Food turned to sand in my mouth and with sleep came only nightmares.

Stan and I made a plan for a follow-up appointment and some possibly healthier coping behaviors I could use until I saw him again.  I agreed to drink water and avoid alcohol.

The next day I called my personal physician and the moment he saw me he put me on medical leave. And thus began January, 2012; the last year of the Mayans.

I know upon reading this that the reader’s mind will immediately fly into vivid imaginations which is why I’ve asked for patience while I tell this story.

Of course, you want to know: Who’s wearing the black hat and who’s wearing the white hat? We always want to know who is the good guy and who is the bad guy, and just where our sympathies should lie.

I hate to admit it, but on December 31st, even though I might have been the one wearing white, I am hardly the heroine of our story.

And the man in black, as we’ll see over time, is not really the villain either. (Even though he chose to paint on a ridiculous pencil-thin mustache that I hated the entire night and wish I’d wiped off when I had the notion.)

 

No one is innocent in my story. We’re both the hero and the villain. Like everyone else, we’re complex people with complex problems and baggage and bullshit just trying to figure our way through.

The first week of January my husband and I were both hit by a Mack truck of reality that neither of us saw coming. And we’ve been picking up the pieces ever since.

Our story, the only story worth my telling, is about two people trying to heal themselves and their little corner of the Universe.

I’m going to try very, very hard to tell the story that happened and not the story that I wish had happened, nor the story I want you to read. I’m going to write the truth, so help me, God.

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{ 48 comments… read them below or add one }

Stephanie July 14, 2012 at 5:47 pm

I’m sorry for whatever happened…it’s obviously been very painful. Having experienced my own Mack truck, I know how completely it can turn your world upside down. I hope writing helps you process and heal.

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Jack@TheJackB July 3, 2012 at 11:49 pm

I keep poking my head in here to see what is new. I am listening.
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Missus Wookie July 1, 2012 at 8:53 am

Hmm – no wonder I had problems with teaching maths – that looks like wayyy more than eight.

Listening and not judging ’cause I’m one of complex ones – who’s hoping to get some of the snack goodies being shared. Especially the chocolate :)
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chaik June 30, 2012 at 10:38 am

hey girl, glad to see you. :)

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Suzanne June 29, 2012 at 6:36 pm

You are a brave and beautiful story teller. No judgement here. Wishing you continued success in therapy. I am rooting for you and looking forward to reading more.

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Kristi R. June 29, 2012 at 3:25 pm

I’m glad you are writing and posting it to your blog again.

I think others have posted more eloquently about how happy they are you are back. I’ll get in line for popcorn, chocolate & wine. Can I bring some hor d’oeuvres?

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Brenda June 29, 2012 at 7:15 am

I’m here, passing the chocolate to Yvonne and hoarding the Junior Mints to myself-sorry, habit.

Mack trucks suck. Working together is cool.

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Carolyn June 28, 2012 at 9:45 pm

I love that you are writing again Chloe :) you help me be real – thanks for that and thanks for sharing your story, experiences and learnings. You are a generous, fabulous woman. So looking forward to the next installment. love and cyber hugs to you xxxx
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Robin June 28, 2012 at 6:28 pm

I love these comments you’ve received. *hug* I have nothing worth adding. All I’ve got is “what they said”…except I didn’t say it because I’m not nearly that articulate these days.
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Robin June 28, 2012 at 6:29 pm

I mean, I said what they said, I just didn’t SAY what they said. :)
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Crystal June 28, 2012 at 4:01 pm

Chloë – I’ve followed your blog forever, although I’ve never commented. I’ve learned so much from you – way back from the good old SL days when I was just lurking. I’ve cried reading your stories, gained vast amounts of wisdom from you, and found that I *LOVED* that you were *REAL*. I LOVE that about you, and wish that I could just give you a gentle hug. You’ve ministered to me, and therefore – by default, because I’m the MOM! – to my FAMILY. Please keep writing. I’ve checked your blog often, and prayed for you. Life is certainly messy – and it’s when we travel together along that journey that tiny blessings pop out of the messiness. Hang in there.

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Chloe Jeffreys July 6, 2012 at 1:36 pm

Crystal, thank you for taking the time to write such an encouraging comment. It is nice to know that I’m not out shouting to the breeze.

I hope that my mess can encourage someone else. Life is messy, and sometimes the beauty is in the catastrophe. I hate that about life, but I’ve lived long enough to know that it is the truth.

I’m glad you came.

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Jamie Jo June 28, 2012 at 10:26 am

As others have pointed out, you clearly have more than 8 readers left, Chloe, and so far no one appears to be casting stones. I agree with Mary Grace: an eloquent start. I’m all ears and heart, praying for you once again.

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Mary Grace June 28, 2012 at 10:03 am

An eloquent start.

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Sharon June 28, 2012 at 9:46 am

you’re just brave enough to talk about your reality………our Mack truck came last year during which time I literally dropped my dying hubby off at the front doors of the hospital so they could take care of him because I couldn’t do it anymore. But enough about me, let’s talk about you some more…….. xoxo

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Texanna June 28, 2012 at 9:27 am

Geez, there should be cliffhanger warnings!!! :p Hope you’re having a good day at work, waiting to read on, also near the popcorn, coffee and chocolate.

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Jen June 28, 2012 at 9:09 am

I’m sorry for your pain. It rarely surprises me to hear that people have these stories – there is so much that we don’t know about what happens behind closed doors – or behind the blogging curtain, I guess. I hope you find some peace through writing about it.

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Cindi June 28, 2012 at 6:53 am

You have more than 8… Love you… Will bring chocolate.

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Amy R. June 28, 2012 at 6:42 am

You are facing your stuff and not running from it. I appreciate your willingness to share and the example you are setting!

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Liza Lee June 28, 2012 at 6:34 am

Friend, you have a whole lot more than eight readers. The truth will set you free, so go for it.

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Peg June 28, 2012 at 6:24 am

I am glad to see you writing again. And coming through another storm – thank you for being willing to share the pretty, the ugly and everything in between. Love you!

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Susan in the Boonies June 28, 2012 at 6:20 am

You go, girl.
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Julia June 28, 2012 at 5:21 am

<3 I'm so proud of you. You know I'm standing next to you as you write, handing you granola and chocolate, and cheering you on. None of us are completely heros (or heroines) and none of us are completely villains. Life is complex and messy. That's why we need friends and chocolate.

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Kat June 28, 2012 at 5:12 am

So glad you are writing again, Chloe. ((((Hugs))))

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Kat June 28, 2012 at 5:11 am

I am so glad you are writing again, Chloe. ((((hugs))))

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The Reader June 28, 2012 at 4:53 am

Like I said yesterday, I’m just glad you’re back, no matter what or how many levels of BSC we have to wade through, wait through, whatever. You’re a brave woman, this I know.

Will bring extra popcorn & coffee to share.

No judgement here, either, but hopefully you know that.

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Chloe Jeffreys July 6, 2012 at 1:35 pm

Hey! I’m always glad to see you here. We definitely will need coffee and more popcorn.

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Kristi June 28, 2012 at 4:44 am

Intermission hug, Chloe and ditto on what Les said.

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Chloe Jeffreys July 6, 2012 at 1:34 pm

Thanks Kristi! Thanks for stopping by and reading and taking the time to comment. It means a lot to me.

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Les June 28, 2012 at 4:32 am

Listening, reading, entirely too old and too compassionate to feel much judgment about anything, and smart enough to keep any residuals to myself. Glad you’re writing again – it will be good for all of us, including you. And I understand about stories that are in the way, and have one I have to write, but yours sounds the more painful by far. We are out here.

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Chloe Jeffreys July 6, 2012 at 1:33 pm

Hey Les! It is good to be writing again. I feel good about it. Owning one’s story is a powerful place to be.
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Kelly June 28, 2012 at 4:20 am

I am so glad you are writing :) You know there’s no judgment from me.

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Dawn June 28, 2012 at 4:16 am

I’m #11! :-) See a third more than you expected! Being real can be hard, thanks for your transparency.

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Chloe Jeffreys July 6, 2012 at 1:30 pm

Hey Dawn! Thanks for coming back and leaving a comment. I’m glad that I’m not alone.

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Negin June 28, 2012 at 3:37 am

Chloe, <3 you and your openness. Can't wait to read more. Thinking of you and sending so much love and prayers your way.

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Tabitha June 28, 2012 at 1:23 am

Had to comment to show you have more than 8 readers. I have no idea what you are really talking about but I don’t care.

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Yvonne June 27, 2012 at 11:10 pm

One of the eight. I’ll share Anne’s popcorn while we wait and you tell.

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Chloe Jeffreys July 6, 2012 at 1:29 pm

Like the song says, “Eight, eight, eight is great!”

I hope Anne brings enough popcorn for everyone. I like popcorn.

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Lisa aka broken 'n' beautiful June 27, 2012 at 11:09 pm

I’ve read thus far and am waiting your triumphant return to your story. Like you care what I think but carry on.

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Sherry June 27, 2012 at 11:08 pm

Nine. You forgot to count me. Oh wait, I get it — I was one of the ones you thought you’d scared off. Nope, no such luck.

*takes a seat beside Heather so as to be close to the coffee & chocolate when they get passed around*

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Chloe Jeffreys July 6, 2012 at 1:29 pm

Nine is one of my favorite numbers. I’m glad you came.

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Heather A June 27, 2012 at 10:05 pm

You’re writing.
I’m smiling.
I’ll wait here.
When you come back, bring coffee & chocolate.

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jeninabudhabi June 27, 2012 at 9:59 pm

….also listening and saddened by your pain. write on.

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Cheri in WA June 27, 2012 at 9:52 pm

I’m ready when you are.

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Stephanie June 27, 2012 at 9:43 pm

I’m listening, and not judging anybody.

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Chloe Jeffreys July 6, 2012 at 1:28 pm

I’m glad.
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Anne (@notasupermom) June 27, 2012 at 9:23 pm

Post more tomorrow. I’ll bring the popcorn!
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Chloe Jeffreys July 6, 2012 at 1:28 pm

I love popcorn. Bring the buttered stuff, okay?

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