Overfunction?

I’m an overfunctioner. I just learned that word this morning on the way to work while I was listening to Brene’ Brown’s Rising Strong (a must-read for anyone who considers themselves part of the human race).

I recognized my own tendencies as Brene’ was describing the person who “does” instead of “feels” in the face of grief. Good lord – the very definition of debi in times of sorrow! I push aside the horrible overwhelming feelings and “take care of things.”

But not only that, by taking over so much, I allow others to fall into underfunctioning. According to Brene’, when someone becomes an underfunctioner they fully feel, they allow others to do for them – all the things that I fight so hard against for myself. Underfunctioning can be a two-edged sword. It can encourage drowning in sorrow, depression. But, and this is a big BUT…

Underfunctioning can also be a blessing, one that I need to somehow embrace. I allowed, probably encouraged, my now incredibly capable daughter to be an underfunctioner during times of grief. And it burned her with searing pain at times – feelings she often didn’t know how to handle. But through the years she has figured out how to make a balance. She feels (so much more than I do) grief deep in her soul, accepts it and then she takes baby steps, bigger steps and finally walks boldly away from it. My grief follows me, haunts me, tries to rise above the surface and I just keep pushing it down with to-do lists.

As I was typing this, I listened to Joe Biden speak of not knowing whether he will run for president. I admire the man – he is feeling his grief and not embracing an overfunctioner’s attitude. He stated honestly, with heart-wrenching pain in his voice, that he doesn’t know what he will do, whether he will run for president of the United States. With only a few words, Vice President Biden laid his soul bare to the world. “True bravery and bad-assery” as Brene’ would say.

When will I allow myself to fully feel like Mr. Biden and my daughter do? Will I ever allow it? And if I do, will I ever recover afterward? I think that is probably what I fear the most.

But! I have an extensive support network and I’m intelligent and could navigate to health. Maybe I’ll truly convince myself of that and get there someday.

~ debi

And Happy Birthday to me.

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I Never Grew Up

Last night my daughter, Rachel, three of her lifelong friends – Chris, Jesse, Mel – and I played dominoes and acted silly while drinking way too much… and then we drank more. I’m not sure we ever finished a single game, and if we did I have no idea who won.

Debi, Rach, Jessie and Mel

Then we cried in memory of loved ones we’ve lost much earlier than death should have had the right to claim them.

It was one of those evenings that was relayed by my hippocampus into its forever and ever safe-storage in my cranium.

Rach and I crashed in the guest room, her bulldog Suri bedding down between my legs pinning me to the mattress. But who cares when you’re that inebriated?

At some point in the middle of the night, my body revolted and sent me to the porcelain throne, no doubt the only reason I was able to wobble into work this morning.

After washing my face and brushing my gnarly teeth and tongue, my incredible man made sweet love to me… completing this perfect memory.

The last thing I remember before the sandman visited was giggling and saying, “I guess I never grew up.”

And I hope I never do.

– debi

Quiet Lost: Chapter 10

Quiet Lost is a story of betrayal, murder, love and lost love.  It will require several chapters to tell Neil’s story.

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Quiet Lost

Chapter 10

Monday 6:30pm, September 14

Neil hung Brad’s keys on the key rack. When I wake in the morning, maybe MY keys will be here. He cut short a laugh, closed his eyes and shook his head as if to clear his thoughts. Continue reading

Quiet Lost: Chapter 5

Quiet Lost is a story of betrayal, murder, love and lost love.  It will require several chapters to tell Neil’s story.


Quiet Lost

Chapter 5

Friday night, September 11

“Gin!” Neil laid down his runs and sets.

Cassie threw her cards on the sofa table between them, “That’s not fair!  You always win, Daddy.”

“Not true.  You won a game last week.  Besides, what does fair have to do with anything?”  His eyes twinkled as he suppressed a mischievous grin.  He wanted to reach out and muss her hair, but restrained himself – that would lead to an all-out war. Continue reading