Saturday, August 21, 2004


Breaking through Walls of Pain  - click to play accompanying music. [copyright: Trish Monaco 1997]

Plans are being made for an important trip back east.  Most of you know I haven't seen my father in eleven years.  I haven't seen my brother in about seven years [when my niece was born].  And the last time I saw my mother was when she was having open heart surgery, about six years ago.

There are many reasons we're so estranged.  But mostly, I needed to take the time and space to find out who I am without the expectation of anyone - including myself.

As with any family, there was a lot of pain and anger and much denial to sort through.  Mostly my own.

Five years of traditional therapy.  Another five years of alternative therapy.  A decade of Writing.  Music.  Creativity.  Reading.  Talking.  Screaming.  Yelling.  Crying.  Laughing.  Ranting.  Meditating.  Exercising.  Painting.  Drawing.  Yoga.  Dogwalking.  Learning.  Growing.  Opening.  Loving.  ...  I'm not the same person I was eleven years ago.  I imagine none of us are.

So, this is kinda big.

There's no way I could do this alone.  So in October Cheryl and I will take a week to visit my family and hers.  We will fly into Boston, visit our families, drive to Montreal, visit her family, then drive back to New England for a gathering with my family and friends.

This could explain the intense pain I'm in today.  Every time I think about it, my cramps get worse and I drift off into space.  But each moment helps me better prepare for the visit.

I was thinking, I get to know so many people online.  I give everyone the same respect.  I try to see people through clear eyes, with an open heart, without judgment.  Why then would I not try to give the same to the two people who raised me - the same two people I know very little about?

My brother and sister-in-law know I'm coming.  I guess it's time I sent an email to my mom.  Unless she's reading which case, I'll be sure to hear from her any minute now.

~ ~ ~ The heart The soul The part The whole The love The light No wrong No right The truth The hope The joy of life ~ ~ ~


smprfipisis1114 said...

Hi to your Mom, and I'm glad your going home. I hope that when you do both you and Cheryl have a wonderful time. - Rachie

luckyaugustgirl said...

Free- Once again, I feel your pain.... its all too common anymore to have estranged families.... My father and i never talk, mostly due to his lack of understanding of my life and direction also.... Kudos to you for attempting to resolve this part of your life...... Good luck with this one trish! (Sending the positives your way) Have some fun girl...... -- Sarah

barbaramck said...

love this entry. YOU GO GIRL!! take care, barb~

cousinoftrish said...

Wow!  I am sitting here in tears!  Not sure why, I am thinking it is a mixture of things.  The picture for one (I remember that wallpaper), the song in the background, and the fact that your coming home all make me tear up.  I hope I get to see you when you visit.  Love you! M

txsguinan said...

Oh, honey.  No doubt this is connected to your physical pain; it's clear that you are half-dreading it.  But the other half hopes ~ eleven years, as you say, is a very long time and you've been growing in more ways than even you probably realize .  Perhaps they have too.  

And October is such a beautiful time to be in Boston and Canada; there's nothing more glorious than an autumn day in New England.  I've always felt happiest in the fall.  And you'll have Cheryl and your friends...   :)

derossetfamily said...

" I needed to take the time and space to find out who I am without the expectation of anyone - including myself."
Thats such a good observation, I wish I could be as reflective as you. What a brave trip to plan, I hope you get out of it exactly what you need to. You have our support all the way.

ggal3133 said...

Beautiful song....
My husband and his dad were estranged for many years but thankfully they have resolved some of their issues and continue to work on the others.Prayers for you and I hope all goes well with your trip. Stress plays a big factor in crampage so try and relax alittle if you can.

gatorspictures said...

nothing like a good friend, a road trip, and new family beginnings to round out a year right. here's hoping everything goes just the way you are wishing... c

aims814 said...

"Walls of Pain" has become one of my favorite songs.

So true, most of us are not the same after a decade.

I've known you for almost a year now, and I've witnessed so much healing in your life in just a short period of time. You've helped me heal in a lot of ways too. Through your music, and our conversations. It's almost like healing-vibes flow from you. Who better to let it flow upon than those who gave you life? :)

xo love you!

ps~what a cute couple of kids in that photo! how old were you?

ryanagi said...

Wow...this is HUGE! I hope this visit turns out to be a healing experience for you, at the very least. :-)

slowmotionlife said...

I'd come in tonight to wish you a Happy Anniversary in the community, only to be confronted with an entry that reminds of what I love so much about this community to begin with.  You always express just what you're feeling at any given moment - whether it's extreme joy or extreme pain.  I respect that so much.  I admire you.  I love you.  I can understand how these mental wonderings and anxious feelings are wreaking havoc in your physical self.  But I really think, in the end, you're going to be a stronger person having gone, having faced it.  Happy Annivesary, darlin' girl.  I'll see you at the ball ... meet you in the alley for that smoke we talked about.  Love you!  - SloMo

babyshark28 said...

This is sooo strange, freee.  I have been listening to your cd for like a week now.  Really thinking about Walls of Pain.  and my own pain. I wrote something, but I have not put in my journal yet.  
So strange to read this now.
Good luck with the "back at home" feelings.  Getting yourself comfortable with the thought of being "home" again.   What a scary, vulnrable time.  
my thoughts are with you.  hugs!

goldenchildnc said...

It's such a double-edged sword. Those we love the most are the ones most capable of inflicting severe emotional pain -- alot of times without even trying. Good luck with that Trish! I'm glad you made it to the ball. Your ping-pong ball trick was right on time! :-) Happy Anniversary Trish! It's so odd because it has only been a year -- and I've known you for less than that, but it really feels like it's already been forever. {{{{{SMOOCHES!}}}}}

sonensmilinmon said...

Freee,  I did an entry not to long ago about my estranged brothers.  I also said I'd welcome them back into my home anytime. After I wrote that, while knowing it was true, I also knew it would be a gut wrenching experience.  It would be one that would most likely make me physically ill.  I'm about to go back home myself and I have yet to decide if I will  visit my uncle ... another story.  Anyway, I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers and hope all goes well for you.  


LOVE the song, LOVE the whole CD ... I listen to it often. At times I can't get enough.

viviansullinwank said...

{{{{{{{{{{ Freee }}}}}}}}}} you are a courageous woman....a multi talented multi faceted woman so loved by a community of many people you've never met. I am  happy for you that you will soon be seeing your family  being reuinted with them and with your friends. I know you will experience more of the pain you expressed before you are face to face with them.  I am glad that Cheryl will be with you.

It will probably be an anxiety ridden flight back I hope you're in a comfortable seat with a window view so you can look out the window to the closest part of the heavens we (non-astronaut) humans can get to and reflect.   I also hope you have a few good drinks!


krobbie67 said...

I hope this is a time of healing for you. Try not to think about it before the time occurs. Our minds have a way of building things up and then we are let down as a result. We create scenarios and expect people to live them out according to our plans designed in our heads. Let things happen as they should and have full confidence in yourself that you are well equipped to handle whatever may come or not come as a result. :-) ---Robbie

aynetal3 said...

Hi Freee.  Lot's to catch up with ... you've been on a rollercoaster!  Tough trip coming up.  I believe in you and I believe your ready, although your stomach seems to be doing flip-flops.  Think of giving yourself frequent breaks.  Just planning an evening walk with Cheryl could be a life saver.  Its hard not to replay old roles ... hold onto the part that keeps you strong!  Take care.

s0ngbird1962 said...

Oh Freee, I'm so glad Cheryl will be there to support you as you make this journey.  Time can heal the soul, but sometimes being away too long makes the reconnection even harder to make.   I just know everything will be ok.  And even if it's not all that you imagine, at least you made the effort?  My thoughts are with you as you travel my way to Alaska...  ; P  

indigosunmoon said...

This is a big step your taking Trish.  I wish you the best of luck.
Hopefully a lot of old wounds will be healed with this visit.  A lot
of closed doors, reopened.
Love you,

ondinemonet said...

Hello Trish :)

((((Trish)))) Happiness to you pumpkin....and here's to the healing! :)

Love, Carly :)

sunflowerkat321 said...

I know you're going to live with a lot of questions and uncertainty until you get there.  The important thing is, that you gave yourself all the time you need...and that you took the time to learn about who you are, before you took this step.  Some of us never take the opportunity to learn who we are outside the shadow of our families.  I hope that this trip will work to heal old wounds.

clarity4today said...

Oh I wish you the best of luck with this! So true that no one is the same person we were 11 years ago, but that doesn't mean it's going to be easy to face something that was evidently painful for you.  I am sorry if it's making things difficult for you now, but hope that your trip will bring you... well,  peace.  We all know how important that is to you.

karensull12 said...

I wish you much luck with this upcoming trip.  

freeepeace said...

MIA - It's hard to believe it's been less than a year.  We have seen each other grow in many ways over the year.  I was 4 in the photo.  My brother might've been 6 months-ish.  And My dad was... um... 26?

RYANAGI - LOL, it is HUGE.  Yes, healing experience would be great. :)

SLOMO - Whoops, didn't mean to be confrontational.  I guess it's true.  I express what I'm feeling at any given moment.  Happy Anniversary to you too.  Thanks for that 'smoke' the other night. ;)  Love you too!

SHARKY - Shows how connected we all really are.  What did you write?  I'll have to make my rounds to your Journal.  Hopefully you've posted it.  hugs back!

freeepeace said...

GIGI - Last time I was in New England during Fall, I didn't appreciate it much.  It was 'normal' to me - boring.  I'm looking forward to seeing it through today's eyes.

MARY - I get the sense that you ARE as reflective.  You're wise beyond your human years.  No doubt.  Thanks for your support, always.

GGAL - Crampage eased up later that day.  Just needed to work through it I guess.  More like, suffer through it. LOL

GATOR - Hey, great reflection... rounding out the year.  I like that. :)

freeepeace said...

RACHIE - I'm looking forward to having a great time with Cheryl.

SARAH - It's sad that it's "all too common" to have estranged families.  But it's really understandable.  I'm looking forward to the fun.

BARB - Thanks girl...I'm goin' :)

COUSIN M - Hmm...I was stunned to see your comment [in a good way]. I never really know who's reading my Journal.  As you know, we have many cousins...and quite a few start with M - all of whom I adore.  Which M are you?  You remember that wallpaper?  I don't even remember it.  But there will be a gathering at Al's while I'm there.  Hopefully you'll be able to make it.  Email me if you get a chance [].

freeepeace said...

ROBBIE - True about our minds.  But I can't help but think about the upcoming trip.  I'm also spending a lot of time avoiding thoughts of it.  So it evens out.  :)

AYNETAL - Hi ALL!!  Nice to see you.  Frequent breaks.  A walk with Cheryl.  Great advice.  Thank you.

MICHELLE - HA!  I wouldn't dare visit during Alaska-days. :P  The trip will be great, exactly as it's supposed to be.  I can't remember, is your part of Alaska anywhere near my part of Alaska?

freeepeace said...

GREGG - Hey, watch it with these rumors you're spreading about me and a ping pong ball.  ...unless, I was *that* out of it.  I'd think I'd remember ping-pong.  Though I remember playing some hockey. :P  Yes, less than a year but a lifetime of memories!  Happy Anniversary to you too love.

MONICA - Parallel paths, we're all connected.  Amazing how emotional trauma contributes to physical illness.  Glad you still like the CD and you're not sick of it yet.  Hoping to get the new one done before the end of the year.

VIVIAN - I'm looking forward to a great, comfy flight.  And I'm feeling the love of this community more and more as the days pass.  Slowly but surely, I seem to be meeting everyone.  LOL  It's high time for my AOL-J Couch Tour!  Thanks for everything {{{{{Vivian}}}}}

freeepeace said...

CONNIE - Thank you.  Yes, it's a big step.  I'm ready for it - I think.  LOL  Well, it'll be what it is. :)

CARLY - Thank you love.  Here's to the healing for us all. :)

KAT - True.  It's so important to find the inner/true self.  Without this time, I might not be alive today ... or AS alive anyway.

DONNA - Yes, this isn't an easy trip to plan.  But it's a necessary one.  And I'm looking forward to it, about as much as I'm dreading it.  LOL  I do think it'll be fun.

KAREN - Thank you. :)