Friday, December 21, 2012


It is very difficult to form coherent thoughts right now.  I am usually quite adept at stringing a phrase but tonight, words are jumbled, unclear, conflicting.  Tonight, my world is forever changed.  Tonight, my brother is dead.

When we were little, my brother and I, three years apart, were frequent playmates.  We were each other's only sibling and being the only game in town, we found reasonable enjoyment in each other's company.  I can clearly recall sitting on the carpet in his room, his entire Matchbox car collection and toy garage between us, spending what felt like HOURS choosing which cars we wanted to play with.  I'd choose one, then him, back and forth, laboring over which hot-rod or monster truck we most coveted.  (I'd choose the emerald green sports car whenever possible.) Eventually, all the cars distributed, we'd generally play for about ten minutes and, quickly bored after the laborious selection procedures, go on to other pastimes.

Another frequent game of ours was "Fifi".  My brother, the younger of the two of us, would act as Fifi, my French poodle, who would obediently follow me around the house, often at the end of a "leash", barking for treats and grinning sheepishly when receiving pats on the head.

This is the brother I choose to remember right now.

From the age of fifteen until today, at age thirty-six, my brother's life (or a reasonable facsimile), was dominated by alcohol and drug addiction. For the past twenty-one years, I saw only rare and fleeting glimpses of the wonderful, playful, kind soul he once was.  For the past twenty-one years, I have known, far more often than not, only the monster.

In the interest of self-preservation, tonight, I choose not to focus on the cruelty he unleashed throughout the course of his addiction.  I choose to put aside (but NOT forget), the barrage of insults he hurled at me, my husband and my mother, in countless instances, for many, many years. There will be plenty of time for that, whether I like it or not.

But really, the point of this rambling blog, when my head is so unclear, when my feelings are so convoluted and contradictory, is that  My brother had countless opportunities for recovery.  I sat in on more "family sessions", listened to more excuses, shared more emotions and pleas and angry declarations than I could possibly count.  But, the fact remains, alcohol won, drugs won, addiction won and I lost, my mother lost, my brother, in oh so many ways, lost.  I go on, such as I am, for whatever it's worth; questions, forever unanswered; soul, forever broken; life, forever changed.

Jeffrey Scott Feldman

Tuesday, December 4, 2012


I haven't written in a while.  I suppose it's because I don't have much to say.  Well, not much that hasn't already been said, ad nauseum, anyway.  I'd love to say that my life was taking on great twists and turns and changes for the better but, because I'm honest, perhaps to a fault, I cannot.  The fact is, nothing has changed except that I feel like I'm in the worst place, mentally, that I've been in for months.  Not an unfamiliar place, I assure you, but one that I was hoping not to revisit again so soon or, frankly, at all.  I truly believe that my depression is hard-wired into my brain and I am not naive enough to believe that it can ever be "cured".  Is there treatment available?  Surely.  But is it available to me, once again without health insurance?  Most certainly not.

You're probably all sick of the "woe is me" trials and tribulations of poor Kari.  Believe me, no one is more sick of it than I.  But the fact remains, I feel quite powerless over most of the situations in my life.   My husband often gives me this example of my "inappropriate" reactions to things.  Whether I stub my toe or break my leg, my stress-level is, on a scale of one to ten, an eleven.  I can't argue that, it is the truth.  Why I react that way is the question.  Seemingly small, almost insignificant slights become exponentially greater than they should be, automatically.  My mind has never worked "properly" and I don't think it ever will.  Sure, I'm not going to lie, meds would help.  Therapy?  Absolutely!  Alas, for the present time, I must fight this battle within my own mind alone.  This is not to say that I don't have a loving supportive husband.  Believe me, I am grateful for him every day of my life.  I have some fan-fucking-tastic friends which sets me far above many others, I'm certain.  Everything is not misery, though many times, it feels that way.  But overall, without fail, I am miserable and I'm really fucking sick of it.

I know no one can solve the problem that is me, least of all, me.  I don't expect you to.  I guess what I hope, above all else, is that people, even just a few, can understand that I am not this way by choice.  I would give everything to have a clean slate, to have been born with a mind and a heart not clouded by depression.  I recall being asked in one of those "touchy-feely, experimental-type" seminars in junior high which, of many possible "qualities", I would most like to possess.  Some of the choices included "wealth",  "health", "success" and "happiness".  Most people chose "health".  I, without hesitation, chose "happiness".  After all, if you're miserable, what value do any of those other things possess?  I figured, even if I was poor, unhealthy and unsuccessful, if I was happy, I could overlook those things and still enjoy my life.  I suppose, after all these years, I still wish for that.