Sunday, 13 August 2017

Take me Home, Country Roads

This is the problem with me blogging. Once I start talking again, you can't shut me up.

Usually this time of year, I'd be on a beach back home. But this has been a strange year. One of the ones that you'd prefer to forget. Except those few good times. Like that weird little video FaceBook does for you every once in awhile without you asking for it. And it reminds you that there were some good times.

For me, I gotta say, almost dying really shows you who your true friends are. When I was in the hospital for two weeks, I just gave up. You know how they say in those situations when you're either going to live or die it's all in your attitude? I had a 10% chance to live and my attitude sucked. I wanted it. Which is probably why I'm perfectly healthy now. Can't always get what you want. :)

But people showed up. With flowers, with books. (That's the way to my heart by the way.) Jay brought me food every day and when I got really down, he brought my dog to the hospital.

I was talking to my dad yesterday and he gave me the usual speech about how we're better off than most people and we just need to be grateful. I've heard it so many times I could just recite it in my head. He's right though. He's always right.

When I lost my last job, I had dinner plans with some friends. I showed up crying. I cried all through dinner. They were so kind to me. When I was leashing up my dog to walk home, he handed me a check. It was more than enough to cover my rent and he labelled it "your insurance". I never cashed it but I put it on the fridge to remind myself that people are good.

My best friend seems to know me better than I know myself. I wanted to go home, my cousin is getting married and I always go home in the summer. Even though I've been in the city longer than I lived in the country, as much as this is home, that's "more" home. If that makes any sense. I want to see my parents, my little brother and my grandma.

He offered to buy me a plane ticket. He was like, I know you want to go home. And you're doing your MBA. You'll get a good job and pay me back. As a Sullivan, I am proud and I refused. Same reason I never cashed that check on the fridge. He said okay. I'll put the money in this box. You use it or you don't. It's up to you.

In the end, home wins over my pride. Three weeks and I'll be driving on old country roads. Probably listening to country music and remembering that no matter how far we run off course, we can always go home and remember who we really are - who we were - who we can be.

Sullivan out.

Friday, 11 August 2017

Rabbit Hole

Did y'all miss me? I'm coming out of retirement temporarily for a couple of reasons. 1) I don't think anyone is cyber stalking me right now. 2) I haven't written anything in almost 6 months and I'm dying. 3) I'm so proud of Toronto right now I have to talk about it.

Catch CityNews last night? They did an hour long segment exposing the JWs for being a cult who shuns people. They interviewed three people who have left. One fader, one disfellowshipped and one who disassociated. (You will only understand those terms if you were in it, so let me know if you need a dictionary. I've been all three at different times.)

If you didn't see it you can catch some highlights here:

They called it "Leaving Jehovah". The US is way ahead of us, and as usual, we've had a slow start here in Canada. I've spent a lot of years feeling alone in my well-intentioned yet slightly angry public crusade against the Watchtower. These three people though, were brave enough to tell their stories and speak out.

It was accurately and well done in my opinion. Some of the discussion was very on point. "Being an apostate is the worst sin you could commit." True. I know they all think I am am very dangerous. Although the Watchtower did make a kids cartoon about how gay marriage is the equivalent of taking scissors on an airplane. So I guess they think that's pretty bad in their eyes too. Although I don't really get the analogy. They need better PR/Marketing people. If I had a gun to my head and was forced to explain to my six year old how it wasn't okay to love who you love, to have two mommies or live your life the way you wanted to, I don't think scissors on an airplane is the way I would go. But what do I know? Some of my best friends are gay. They seem more like a warm blanket and a big hug when I need them than scissors on a plane to me.

One of the other guys said he invited his JW family to his upcoming wedding. They refused to go. He said the next time they'll all be in the same room will be for a funeral. Where he will be shunned by everyone, not comforted for his loss. I believe that about my family. Then again, haven't we all had to mourn that loss already?

They talked about nightmares of Armageddon coming and dying in flames. Would've been better to live that in real life in the last Game of Thrones episode (spoiler alert!) than in your dreams. That looked like fun! I can attest to the fact that long after you stop believing, the dreams still haunt you.

I honestly, sincerely believe that it's all worth it. That we're happier being free. I don't mean to minimize anything anyone is currently going through. But isn't it better not to be brainwashed? To make your own decisions for the first time in your life? Scary as hell. But worth it.

I'm so proud of all these people for telling their stories. I never wanted to be the lone voice. I always wanted us to join forces and expose them by speaking out together. If you want to join in, you can be anonymous. Or you can show your face. Let's take these fuckers down.

Alice never would have got to wonderland, had she not fallen down the rabbit hole. Let's free fall.

Sullivan out.

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Bend until you break

Take your makeup off, let your hair down, take a breath, when you're all alone, do you like you?

Do you? I don't like myself. To be honest, I don't think any of us should have to bend until we break. I've done that. I'm ashamed of it. Trying to belong has not been my forte since I left the cult. I made mistakes. I handled it better than some of our friends who are gone now. The ones who decided it was better to be go away than to keep trying. I don't blame them. I get it. I cannot tell you how many times I've been there. You'll have to wait for that book I'm writing that is never going to be finished to find out all about that. Good luck with that :)

I have all these pictures in my head of my past life. "I hate you, I love you" is the theme song of my life. I love them all but I hate them too. I hate them for not loving me enough to stick with me when I decided to leave. I love them because erasing them would mean half of my life is just gone. Like it never happened.

I always fall in love with the wrong men. And it's entirely possible the wrong girls as well.

I'm retiring the blog just for awhile. I was talking to Liz the other day. Liz: Have you googled you? You're everywhere.

Let's be honest, probably not as much as the Kardashians are (my god, did I actually use that word on my blog?)

I've used this blog as my personal diary, there's a reason those used to come with a lock and key. It's been a heartbreaking, joyful, terrifying, exciting wonderful journey here on the outside.

I met Margaret Atwood the other weekend. She was lovely. Then I started to feel bad because even though I look up to her as a wildly popular Canadian author, truth be told, I've never read any of her books. I have at least a hundred books in my apartment. Some of them hers. I'm still making the rounds and usually I have two or three on the go, so I can pick what I read depending on my mood.

So I cheated. Liz was watching the Handmaid's Tale on TV. I followed suit. I know the Jehovah's Witnesses are not as bad as that situation. They don't have machine guns....that I'm aware of :) At the end of the day, there's so many similarities though. Us, them, the Scientologists, the Mormons...the list goes on.

The secret lingo, the distrust, the spying on each other. Women go everywhere in twos, you can't be alone with a man who is not your husband. There are extreme penalties for breaking the rules and they all come with a scripture they can beat you over the head with. Some random scripture from the bible which was written in an age when men got away with anything they wanted. Multiple wives, concubines, wars, stoning people to death, killing anyone you wanted. The Bible is basically Game of Thrones on crack. But these were "God's people". Women and gays were synonymous with the lesser and subjected to all kinds of abuse.

How Margaret put all that together in 1985 is really impressive. With Trump and Trudeau running our world, I wonder how close life will become to that piece of fiction.

They tell the handmaiden that "everyone breaks". For so many people who have been raised in oppressive, non-accepting lives, that's true.

Okay, I'm going to sign off. I'll leave this up for the weekend and then we need to take a break. Have a couple of job interviews coming up and I don't need potential employers googling me. It's just a break, not a break up. For those of you out there who feel trapped, remember it might seem to be easier to stay somewhere where you feel secure. If you feel that way though, remember that security could be ripped away from you at any moment for the smallest infraction.


We will be here on the other side to help.

Sullivan out.

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Mother's Day 2017

I’ve always kept a diary. Well, until I started writing a blog. As long as I can write, get it out, I’m good.

I love my mother, I always will. We are so different though and we never really connected. I’m too much like my dad. I don’t think like her, I don’t look like her. I’m all Sullivan. She makes me miserable and I don’t understand fully what I did to deserve all that hate. When I left the cult, I put a nail in the coffin of that relationship.

Fortunately for me, I had a back up. When my dad remarried, I wasn’t happy about it. I was a kid who wanted her parents together. I went through my old journals and at somewhere around 8 years old I wrote “ Today Dad is marrying Helena. I guess I just want him to be happy.” Pretty deep for an 8 year old, I think. :)

And she has made him happy. For decades now. She is the loving and supportive wife my dad never had with my mom. She makes me happy too. Helena, who is now Mom to me, fits into the family like she was always there.  And she has been there way longer than she wasn’t.

She gave all of us a gift in Matthew, the only sibling I have who still talks to me. He’s become a wonderful man and I love him dearly.

Mom and I, we’re both aspiring writers. I’m more serious when I write, she puts fun into everything. She loves to make people laugh and she takes the darkest situations and turns them into something we can cry laughing about. That’s a talent I wish I had!

She’s my support, my friend and the mother I never had. She can anticipate what I want before I want it and she ALWAYS puts everyone else before herself. She’s a dedicated, caring daughter, a loving and loyal wife, a mother who fiercely protects her children as much as is possible. She’s the most fun grandma I know. (Except you Grandma - I think you're the most awesome Grandma to me.) Helena's not my grandma she's my mom so a little disclaimer there!

She's definitely beautiful inside and out. A blessing to our family in every way. And her spaghetti isn’t bad either : )

I love you mom. I’m grateful that I can talk to you about books, about writing, about boys, about work,  about pretty much everything I need to talk about. I’m grateful that you put up with me. I’m grateful you drag me to church once or twice a year.  I’m grateful that you never give up on any of us. I’m grateful for the joy you bring to our lives. I’m grateful for you. Happy Mother's Day. 

Sullivan out.

Saturday, 6 May 2017

Hearts Don't Break Around Here

I know what you're thinking and you're right. I am obsessed with Ed Sheeran. This song plays on repeat in my apartment.

But seriously, how many times has my heart been broken? I don't even know. Do you count that by each person? What if it was a group heartbreak - is that just one or hundreds?

Either way, it's been a rough go.

So much so, that I can't even trust it when good things happen. I've always considered myself an optimist. Then I became an optimist with depression who tried to kill herself.

I've learned something very valuable...finally. Don't go it alone. Take the help that's offered. The Universe always comes through, usually by providing the right people in your life at the right time. If you're lucky it will drop a huge dog you didn't necessarily want in your lap. :)

It will be 8 years in June since I was kicked out of the JWs. It was the worst and best thing that has ever happened to me. I don't pretend to be wise, but everything does happen for a reason. Cliches are cliches for a reason.

It wasn't until I turned 40 though that I finally felt like I had purpose in my life again. I actually love going to work in the morning. Steve Jobs said: "Sometimes life is going to hit you in the head with a brick. Don't lose faith."

Winston Churchill said: "If you're going through hell, just keep going." And the great Ed Sheeran said: "I love the way you conquer your fears. Hearts don't break around here." (One of these days I will get over my love of redheads)

I called Kyla and said my boss asked me to lunch and I thought he was going to fire me. That's how my brain is wired now. Nothing good stays. He actually just wanted to give me a present for Max. I told her I wasn't used to good things happening to me. She said she wasn't used to that either.

We can fix that though. We can conquer our fears, we can change our thought process.

I saw a reiki master the other week. I don't really "get" reiki. It's all energy work and all my psychics think my energy is bad. She told me that the thing I didn't understand was how loved I was. She said she saw a flock of birds, flying in formation, circling around me. She couldn't have possibly known about my bird obsession.

Or that my mentor told me that's called a "murmuration". Us lost people can find each other and make something beautiful out of any situation if we do it together.

Life is beautiful. I appreciate it every day and love all those people who chose to love me despite my brokenness. I doubt my heart will ever break again.

Sullivan out.

Saturday, 29 April 2017


I had a lovely afternoon. It's not even May and my friend and I took the afternoon to eat oysters and mussels on a patio. It got really cold and they offered us blankets, which we were grateful for.

This person has had a different experience than me. I don't judge. We all have our own path. Whatever. He told me that maybe I should stop speaking out. Maybe that would change the outcome I've come to accept with my JW family. He's never been shunned, he doesn't even understand what it's like. How awful it is.

I appreciate that he will still risk being seen in public with me. I'm pretty famous for being completely dangerous in the JW community. He said you could still change that. I can't. The damage has been done.

I made a choice and I stand by it. I wouldn't go back and change anything. Even if it meant I got to have that completely fake superficial relationship with my mom and sister. I told him CBC wanted to interview me. I didn't end up doing it. He was like, good for you. For every ex-JW who thinks that, there are two that think I failed them.

If someone else would like to take my place as an apostate who talks openly about the cruelty and hatred of this organization that promotes love, be my guest. I will step down. It's exhausting to be honest and there's no reward in it for me.

The only reason I started writing again is because I'm happy now. I didn't write for a long time. And y'all were like, where did you go? I didn't go anywhere. I never left your side. I just took some time to take care of me. I needed to at the time.

I guess there is a second reason. Jay got me a writing desk as a subtle hint that I was denying my true self by just shutting up. I took off my blackbird necklace ages ago. The one my girlfriend got me for Christmas that time. But then my little brother bought me one that was a feather. He was like, you know, because of your whole bird thing. That's what I wear every day.

This is who I am and it doesn't hurt me anymore to do it. But if y'all want me to shut up, I can do that too. A lot of people think I should: my family, my non-JW family, my mentor, some of my friends. If that's only because you're worried about me, you shouldn't be. If that's because you're worried about them? You should be. Russia has just banned Jehovah's Witnesses for being an "extremist group". Good on them. The right thing to do is not always the easiest thing.

I'm still the Blackbird.

Sullivan out.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Say Something

"Say something. I'm giving up on you."

Well here we are. This past year, after almost dying, leaving my job, dating and breaking up with someone I have loved for years, being unemployed for months, I'm once again a functioning member of society. Not someone who hangs out in yoga pants all day alone with her dog doing little projects for whoever needs to hire someone who can write for them or do their taxes. 

I applied for A LOT of jobs. I interviewed for a lot of jobs. With the reasons I had that told me I needed a change, I was picky. It got crazy by the end. I had 13 interviews in two weeks. They were all pretty aggressive in wanting me to make a decision. I had to decide what the hell I was doing with my life. I'm 40 now after all. Halfway through my life, if I'm lucky. 

I can't say enough good things about my almost 7 years at KPMG. I worked with great people. I had mentors who helped me grow. I made a couple of life long friends. When I left, I said from the beginning I wanted to work non-profit. It seems like you can take the girl out of the JWs but you can't take the JW out of the girl. I'd rather help people than make lots of money. I am doing my MBA so hopefully I'll have some great options in the future. 

Still, it was hard to decide. Some companies seemed so much more exciting. My best friend was here when I was in the middle of all that craziness (cause he's always here when I need him) and he was like, "Margaux, you know what you want to do. Do it." I pretty much played Russian roulette with my professional life and I think I dodged a couple of bullets. 

It was the right decision. I'm 9 days straight in and I'm sure of that. I'm exhausted, but sure. There is one drawback to my almost perfect new job. The company next to us - there's a JW who works there. We used to be friends. I'm non-profit now. All the offices on my floor share a bathroom. So I run into her. She shuns me. I gotta say, I don't know if I'll ever get used to it. 

They make a big show out of it. Look straight at you - look appalled - look away with their head down. Walk faster past you. As happy and grounded as I feel, it still shakes me. It's still makes me feel bad about myself. It still makes it harder for me to walk tall and be proud of my decisions in life. Even though I am. 

What do they think is going to happen if they look at me? That I'll suck them over to Satan's side by making eye contact? Maybe I'll just have to go to the bathroom at Starbucks across the street now. Or find a way to deal with it. 

We were friends for years, but I can't for the life of me remember her name. It got me thinking. It will be 8 years in June since I was disfellowshipped. I'm starting to forget a lot of things. I'm forgetting my JW family. I see my mom and sister in pictures in my head. Not in video. It's snapshots, not a movie. Worst part? They will never say something. They just disappear, shun. It's okay, Jehovah told them to do it.

I'm at about 20% of my life that's post Jehovah Witness. It's going to take me longer to fix myself. But my therapist thinks I've come a long way. :)

I still wish they could say something though. Like, maybe...goodbye? Something that would give me the closure I still crave. Now that I work in an organization that deals with palliative care, I understand how important the "goodbye" is to the family members and close friends. 

It's important to me. I didn't get that opportunity. My mother has said a lot. Mostly about how I'm a sinner, how I'm going to die at Armageddon and how much I've hurt her by deciding to live a life different from the one she choose for all of us. But it's never the goodbye, the closure. 

So, I officially give up. She called Grandma when I was there at Christmas. I answered the phone. She knew I almost died and she couldn't even say "Are you okay now?". My mother. Couldn't ask if I was okay. She couldn't hang up on me fast enough. To be fair, Jehovah probably wouldn't like that. Jehovah doesn't seem like a very loving or accepting God to me. I'll go with no God and put my faith in the Universe to work things out. The Universe makes me nervous, but she always comes through in the end. 

This is me, phase 2. It's not the end. I've been gifted with a new beginning. I promise to make the most of it. 

Sullivan out. 

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Life is not forever. Love is.

I stole that quote from my friend. They wrote it on her grave.

I'm finally going back to work on Monday. I love to make lists. So I had a lot of things to cross off before I went back. I'd never been to see Donia since she died. I couldn't do it. It just makes the whole thing more real. I've never deleted her number from my phone. But for all my avoiding it, I knew it was something I had to do.

My best friend took me this week. (For the rest of you, who think you're my best friend, I'm sorry. Jay is.) He keeps promising me he'll never die and since he's Asian, he might be right. But I don't trust it. There were a lot of Asians in that cemetery.

If you go to Mount Pleasant Cemetery, (sidepoint the only cemetery I would agree to be buried in if I didn't have an elaborate plan to be buried at sea), it's complicated. They give you a map that makes no sense and you just have to search and search until you find what you're looking for.

I found her. I cried. I brought flowers, but that seemed kind of silly in the moment. In some ways, it makes me happy that I just want to get thrown into the sea when I go so no one will ever have to bring flowers to my grave and cry. On the other hand, say there was someone who wanted to come see me and talk to me. There would be nowhere for them to go.

I got to do that. To talk to her, to tell her I missed her. To cry. She was generous, even when she left us. She was the best person I've ever known. Jay walked Max around the grounds and came back to get me.

Life is short. One of my special friends is grieving the loss of someone that was important to her. I don't have any advice. I can't do anything but listen. I can tell you this: these silly wars we have, the walls we build and the fences we put up, they don't help us, they just hurt us.

Lindsay, put down the guns. It's not worth the lost time.

Dalyse, no one will ever replace John. If something were to happen to Jay, you'd have to come over and scrape me off the floor. I wouldn't want to live in a world without him. So I know how you feel. I didn't want to live in a world without Donia either. But unlike the fairytale I actually believed in for most of my life, we don't live forever. But love does. Donia was right about that. You can be gone, but the love lives on.

Sullivan out.

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

How it Ends

Tell me when it kicks in. 

One of my very dear friends lost her best friend last week. I keep thinking we're too young to be losing friends, but apparently that's not the case. Reality kicks in slowly, as the days go by.

I lost one of the best friends I ever had a couple of years ago, way too soon. It's still hard for me, when I want to call her up and tell her something, and then I remember I just can't anymore. Hasn't stopped me from not even deleting her phone number. I keep thinking one of these days, she'll just be back. Maybe that's why I haven't visited her grave yet.

John Bautista was a good guy. He made you feel important, even if he barely knew you. Generous to a fault. He was always around to give you a ride somewhere you needed to go or grab you some un-obtainable concert tickets. That's how Dalyse and I saw Stevie Wonder. And Blue Rodeo. He was gonna get us Ed Sheeran tickets but unfortunately we lost him first. The concert doesn't even seem to matter anymore.

To my friend, he was the best friend. We used to laugh about how we both had a Filipino "husband". Someone who was always there for us. Who supported us. Who loved us no matter what. And they do that despite the fact that romantically, it was never really an option.

We actually talked about all going to the Philippines together next year. They both had a lot of connections there. A week later, that option was off the table because he was gone.

As much as I try to be there for her, I can't imagine what it's like to lose someone so important to you. Growing up for her and I, has been, in our own ways, difficult. I don't think either of us have ever had someone who just loved us so unconditionally and was there, any time of day, night or anywhere in between. Always a phone call away. Always ready with a hug when we need it. Always had our backs.

She's handling it much better than I would. If something happened to Jay...I can't even imagine the pain. I choose to believe he will outlive me and I will never have to deal with that. Dalyse didn't get that chance.

In John's memory, we will cherish our lives. Live it to the fullest. And sleep when we die. :)

Rest in peace, our friend. And Dalyse, I'm here for you. Always. It's not going to go away. There's no replacing him. But it gets better. Not good, but better.

Love, me

Sullivan out.

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Why is a Raven like a Writing Desk?

I've had that quote from Alice in Wonderland stuck in my head all week. Ever since Jay decided I needed a writing desk. Apparently the reason I'm stuck somewhere between writers block and hating the whole half book I've written so far is because I didn't have a proper desk.

I'm not a raven, I'm a blackbird, but close enough. As usual, Jay solved that problem.

You know what the challenge is with writing a book? On a blog, it's real time. However I feel today, that's what I can write about. Short and sweet. Get it out of my head and move on.

A book is complicated. If I go back to the beginning. I guess I could start somewhere in the middle, but nothing would make any sense.

I thought I was living a dual life and I honestly didn't know which side was the real me. Was I a saint or a sinner? I've been both. I've been loyal and I've betrayed. I can turn on a country song and feel an ache in my heart for home. I'm also a certified city girl. I love my hippie dresses and my Kate Spade purses equally.

The people I love now, they're just as imperfect as I am. I don't care anymore about religious sides in this silly war. I don't care if you're happily married or happily living in sin. Straight or gay or undecided. All I care is that you're happy. After a lifetime of judging people and trying to convert them, finding this truth makes me very, very happy.

That's why I still think I should tell my story. So people know there's an afterlife in this life. There's a happy way out, even if you have to go through hell to get there. I won't lie. It is HELL. But it's worth it. The JWs are wrong. Paradise is the here and now. It's messy and not all that easy sometimes, but it's better than spending a whole life believing in fairy tales. We make our happiness in this life.

So I promise to put this desk to good use. It actually makes me feel inspired. I'll dust off the book and see what happens.

And if you're going to go to bed wondering why the raven is like a writing desk? Google it. While you listen to some country music. There's room in us for all the different parts that make us up. That makes us something beautiful.

Sullivan out.

Monday, 6 March 2017

Phoenix Rising

In ancient Greek mythology, a phoenix is a bird, that's always reborn. It rises from the ashes of it's predecessor, thanks to a little help from the Sun God.

My girlfriend: This is OUR year! Phoenix rising!

Me: Sure.

In my head, I thought nope. I tell myself every single year, this year will be different. Better. I'll be stronger. Then usually, the Universe tries to kill me again. Sometimes I get sick. Sometimes I make myself sick. I am a self-fulfilling prophecy.

This last time though, my mentor came to see me in the hospital. I was hooked up to all these tubes and generally miserable and he was like, you're not depressed this time though. I'm really proud of you. I'll tell you a secret: I wasn't depressed because I just didn't care if I died or not this time. To be honest, not the time before that either. Or the time before that.

I know I've let you all down a bit. I keep getting messages asking why I don't write anymore. I guess I just gave up. What's the point of continuing in a fight you know you're never going to win? The Watchtower, like all big corporations, is fueled by money hungry, selfish men who are self-important enough to wield their power without remorse over their loyal, blind subjects. Who obey either out of guilt, fear or just plain brainwashing.

Like any organization, they're not all bad. There are some very, very good, yet terribly misled people amoung them. Some of us used to be those people. Then we woke up. Realized the truth and despite how hard we tried, we couldn't un-learn what we now know.

They are so good at the guilt and fear though, most of us can't say anything out loud against them. For fear of repercussion. Fear of losing our families. All the people we have ever loved.

The Universe reminded me last week that I'm not supposed to shut up. If you're not ready to talk, that's okay. I think I've helped a lot of you to quietly get out the smart way. Not the way I did - crash and burn. I promise you though, I'll always be here if you need to talk. I can tell your story if you want me to (anonymously), and some of you have already asked me to do that. I'm sorry I've been absent. I shouldn't be. Unlike most of you, I have absolutely nothing to lose anymore.

The phoenix rises from the ashes. Remember that. We can be re-born and become stronger, better and more beautiful than ever. We just have to go through the fire to get there. It's magic. If you believe in it, you will get there. :)

PS. A phoenix is so much cooler than a blackbird, isn't it??

Sullivan out.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

This is 40!

So today is my last day of being in my 30s. I took the blog out of retirement. Do I lie about my age on my online dating profiles? Sure. Because I can. I got some good genes. :)

I'm actually totally okay with turning 40 tomorrow. You couldn't pay me to go back to being 30. I hated my 30s. I was stuck in a cult, then one day I realized if I didn't leave, make a decision, I'd live and die like that. Then I lost everything. When I was in there, I thought I'd be someone. Eventually I was in their eyes. Didn't make me happy.

You know what makes me happy? I had a little birthday party last night. It was a mixed bag. Married people and divorced. People who are living "in sin" with their partners. Gay and straight. Ex-boyfriends. Dogs. I couldn't have been happier. LOVE IS LOVE. I'm not against religion when it enhances peoples lives and makes them happy. What I am against is intolerance, racism, judging people based on how much money they make or their sexual orientation. Don't even get me started on Trump. Also, the JW stigma against higher education. Or anyone who's not one of them, because of course, we'll all die at the always right around the corner, never coming Armageddon.

My mentor was there and he told me he was proud of me for choosing such good people to rebuild my life with.

My life is half over but I think I'm just finally starting to see what it means to be living. As one of my awesome, terrible ex-boyfriends always used to say: "Onwards and Upwards." This was my path, and these are my people. I couldn't be more grateful.

*I can't change. Even if I tried. Even if I wanted to."

Sullivan out.

Friday, 27 January 2017

Stand By Me

"When the night has come, and the land is dark. And the moon is only light we'll see. I won't be afraid..."

I've been hanging out with my favorite couple in the dog park the past couple of days.

Them: How was Cuba?

Me: It was great. Exactly what I needed.

Them: This guy must really want to get together with you.

He doesn't. We tried that, like a million years ago. I don't even know how long we've been friends at this point. A long time, since my life only really started about 7 years ago. I was a terrible girlfriend. The worst.

Somehow though, he's stuck with me. Like a lot of people, I hated 2016. I got sick and almost died. At the same time I lost my job. Then, the guy I'd been seeing for months disappeared. He said I was too inconvenient and not "fun enough" when I wasn't well. He didn't even call me once when I was in the hospital for two weeks.

You know who was there though? Jay. Every. Single. Day. And for the two months after that, when I could barely get out of bed and was in pain all the time. The other guy was right, I wasn't much fun.

Jay decided we should get away and start the new year happy. So we did. The first night, we were watching some live music. It was all in Spanish and the guy was an excellent musician. I went up to meet him on one of his breaks and I asked him if he could play a song for us. Without skipping a beat, he smiled and started to play Stand By Me.

It was appropriate. Anytime anything bad happens, Jay shows up. He holds my hand and says "I got you". And he does. There are so many different kinds of love out there. I'm still not used to the unconditional kind. Love doesn't have to be romantic. It just has to be real. This love story is. I'm a happy girl. :)

Sullivan out.

Sunday, 15 January 2017

In Repair

My conversation with my therapist on Friday:

Ross: You've had a bad month. Maybe you should get rid of your sword.

Me (annoyed): You're the one who told me to get a sword.

Ross: Hmmm. You're right. So how about we just say the sword is your friend?

The sword is my friend. But like all my friends, it has hurt me. One night I had friends over and they were making fun of me and they said, that's not a real sword. So I took it off the wall to prove that it was. It fell out of it's sheath and slashed me. I probably should have gone to the hospital and gotten stitches but Jayjay thinks anything can be cured by putting ice on it. I have a nasty little scar on my wrist and for months people accused me of trying to kill myself again.

Give me a little credit. I already have one failed suicide attempt to my name. I wouldn't be stupid the next time. You don't slash it that way, you do it the other way.

I have realized something though. It's not my friends who make me think about things like that. I wouldn't even be here today without three people. You know who you are. You love me even when I get down, even when I cry. And you celebrate me when I'm on top. You are the best. Like everyone I know who is messed up, my problem is with my mother.

I would like to think if I had been lucky enough to have kids, I would have loved them no matter what. It wouldn't matter to me what religion they chose, whether they were straight or gay, whether they made tons of money or decided to be struggling artists.

We all make choices. My choices have got me to where I am today. Ross says though, that's a good thing. That I need to stop doubting myself and basing my self worth on the people who judge me, And he's right. I am exactly where I am supposed to be. Fuck Linda.

I am in repair. I might never be the "perfect" person I was as a Jdub. And I'm totally okay with that. All you really need is three people to love you, to believe in you. My dad always says you can count the number of real friends you have in your life on one hand. I'm lucky. : )

The hair goes pink again today, just FYI.

Sullivan out.

Monday, 9 January 2017

Broken Places

"The world breaks everyone. Then many are strong in the broken places."

Lindsay loves it when I blog about her so here we go. My friend is focused. She knows what she wants and it's just love at the end of the day. I can't even count how many dates she's been on. (Just dates, don't go thinking all dirty.)

I can't remember everyone's name and sometimes I mix them all up. I usually do not like them. I told one of them that one night. We went for dinner and I just looked at him and said, I don't like you. I was right, he was an asshole, but she was understandably worried when I was coming over to meet her new boyfriend.

He is lovely. Even my jaded, critical mind couldn't find anything wrong with him. He made us dinner and did the dishes so we could have some alone time to catch up. We all want to be loved. Some of us just work harder at it. I don't really date. I hate new people and they always end up being disappointing.

I did date one guy this past year who got to me. In seven years since Adam, no one gets to me. My heart has really huge walls and they are covered in barb wire, unless you are in the inner circle, you don't get in.

He was a very old friend though and I actually loved him. It irritates me how everyone says it wasn't a "real relationship". Yah I'm talking about you, my family. If something feels real to you, all the people who judge you are just noise. Hey, I've spent 7 years on here talking about Adam. I don't care about that anymore. If all this guy did is get me to the other side, good on him.

I told Lindsay they were moving too fast. But, I'm just noise. I want her to be happy and she is. I just can't shake the side of me that doesn't trust anyone anymore. That prefers to be alone rather than to be courageous and put myself out there like she does.

I literally have three people I trust. Four people if we count my therapist. I cherish them. People who I know, in my darkest hour, I can call and they won't judge me. If the depression comes back and I can't leave the apartment, they will walk my dog. And make me eat. Three people is all you really need. :)

Meryl Streep said last night to take your broken heart and turn it into art, My heart has been broken so many times I can't count it anymore. I hate that I still love those people. But I'm working on a book. And the broken places? They are all just blog fodder. I am still cute. I could pretend on social media that I'm perfect. You would never know the truth. I'd rather be honest. That's why y'all still read me right?

Sullivan out.

Wednesday, 4 January 2017

Fascinating & Heartbreaking

Liz: Have you watched Leah Remini's show on Scientology? Fascinating and heartbreaking.

Me: That's my life in a nutshell. I don't need to watch the show, I've lived it.

Not that I was a Scientologist. That would be just a tad more embarrassing that being a Jehovah's Witness. Again, I'm gonna go with, not my fault, I was raised that way.

You know what the funny thing is? I'm so happy. Did my life go to shit leaving them? Yes. You probably don't know what it's like though, waking up in the morning and finally being able to make your own decisions. If I want to wear a short skirt, I can. If I want to say "fuck", that's fine. No one gets to dictate what I wear, how I talk, who I can or cannot be friends with. I'm free.

At the end of the day, our lives are short and living free was the only option for me. Were things better when I naively believed we would all live forever in paradise? Yes and No. I was like a 32 year old kid who still believed in Santa.

My therapist thinks I'm fascinating. I'm sure he's writing a book about me. That's the only possible explanation why he waives his $200 an hour fee to just talk to me every time I run out of money. Or maybe, he's just a good guy who wants to help. Like so many of the "dangerous", "bad", "worldly" people I've met on the outside.

It's a New Year. Life honestly, is beautiful, despite the bumps. I've had a bumpy few days into January but I'm sure it's all onward and upward from here. And when the day gets too long, despite my hundreds of failed relationships, I can just come home to this guy, who loves me no matter what. He has to. I feed him! :)

Sullivan out.