A Day of Mourning, A Day of Thanks

It’s been five years since my husband was run over by a truck and nearly died. Five long years. That day is seared into my memory, and no matter how hard I try, I can’t forget.

It was, by far, the worst day of my life. For several hours, I had no idea if he was alive or dead. All I knew was that he had been hit by a truck and transported to a hospital. I didn’t know which hospital or the extent of his injuries. I didn’t know what I’d find when I finally got to him.

I remember stumbling down the stairs and banging on my mother-in-law’s door. I remember screaming and collapsing. I remember not knowing how to breathe.
I remember hoping with everything I had that he was not dead. That he’d be returned to me whole and perfect and just as he was.

He wasn’t.

The five years since that day have not been easy. Bug’s brain injury and PTSD consumed our family to the point of nearly ripping us apart. He became an alcoholic. He had an affair. He disappeared from us.

Still, my husband is alive.

I say this so often, I suppose it’s become my mantra: My husband is alive. He’s alive, and I should be thankful.

He’s alive even though a truck struck him, dragged his body twenty feet, and pinned him beneath a back wheel. He stayed under the truck, growing colder in the pouring rain, until paramedics removed him.

The doctors told me it was a miracle his injuries weren’t more extensive or life-threatening. Many people aren’t as lucky.

His very existence should be enough.

Perhaps I’m selfish, wanting more than I’ve been given. But five years ago – two days before Thanksgiving – this accident robbed me of the gentle, laid-back man I married and replaced him with someone fragile and erratic. In addition to two dislocated shoulders, a broken wrist, street burns down to the skin on his knee and ankle, and a deep, long gash requiring numerous stitches, Bug suffered a mild front brain injury – similar to football players who have had multiple concussions – and post-traumatic stress disorder. In a few awful seconds his personality shifted.

We’ve fought hard the past few years to get his old personality back and our life in order, only to have road block after road block thrown at us.

Still, life gets better daily.

Immediately after the accident, Bug couldn’t tie his shoes or get dressed or shower without help. He could barely walk, let alone carry his work gear. Yet he insisted on going on a two-week business trip to Europe just days after the accident. He convinced me he needed to get away and working took his mind off the accident. So I left our boys at home with family and tagged along on Bug’s business trips for two months.

“Bug needs me,” I’d explain to anyone who asked. “He can’t be alone. He has nightmares & freaks out when he sees motorcycles. He’s not functioning normally.” When we were home, I’d turn down social invitations. “I can’t leave him with the boys. He’s too angry. I don’t know what he’ll say to them.”

And while there was truth in that, it wasn’t  the real reason.

His accident scarred me too. To this day, I’m left me with panic attacks, the inability to sleep and so, so much fear. Even five years later, the thought of being away from Bug sends my heart racing and leaves me gasping for breath. Sometimes, I just sit on my bed and cry when he’s gone. And he’s gone a lot.

The truth is, I barely function now. It’s like I gave him all my strength, and there is none left for me. I have social anxiety. I cry easily. I have a hard time being left alone. I work too much to keep myself from ruminating over the coulda, woulda, shouldas of the past five years.

We have, in so many ways, changed positions. Like I once hovered over him, he’s now my caretaker, always checking to make sure I’m okay. That I haven’t hurt myself. That I don’t let bipolar depression get the best of me.

We – he and I – we put on smiles in public and pretended the past five years haven’t happened. We’re good like that. A team. That’s the one thing that hasn’t changed.

Yes, I still mourn the loss of the husband I had. But I’m also thankful, because slowly, a new, better version has taken his place.  The sweet, loving husband and caring, doting father has come back.

That man is here, holding my hand. Telling me we’ll get through this. Somehow. The two of us.

Yes, my husband is alive. And for that, I am thankful.

xoxo ~dawn

My Pinterest Life #14 – Glitter is Herpes

Hey All –

When will I learn? Glitter is evil. It spreads and shows up in unexpected places. Even when attached to other things, glitter will find a way to infect you.

If you haven’t guessed, I did a glitter-esque project this week with the Colonel. We decided to make this:


First sign things weren’t going to go well: finding water balloons in November. After checking a few craft stores and CVS, I went to the Party store and they had them. I brought them home and learned an important lesson: there’s a reason they’re called WATER BALLOONS. They were not made for blowing up, and poor Bug nearly gave himself an aneurysm trying to do so.

Here are our six dinky balloons and the gold string the Colonel so badly wanted.



Per the fuzzy instructions, we mixed tacky glue with water. You need to stir it well to get the lumps out.




Next, I attempted to put the string on the balloon. Ummm…no. Just no. The string wanted no part of being wrapped around a stupid balloon and kept sliding off. Also, those perfect round balloons in the Pinterest post, I’d like to know where they came from, because my balloons were oddly shaped.



See the glitter? Do you see it on the string? It looks like gold thread, but it’s lying to you. It wants you to take it home so it can spread across your house like herpes.



The Colonel carefully dipped and rolled each balloon in the glue mixture. After three balloons, he quit.



After gluing, we hung them up to dry for two days. See my janky wrapping job?


For the Colonel, the best part about the project was popping the balloons. Afterward, we were left with this:



Not exactly the glittering snowballs that were promised. More like week-old pumpkins. At least they didn’t smell.

This was much too difficult for an 8-year old to do other than a few small things here-and-there. Hell, it was hard for me, and I’m nearing 40. So, yeah, Pinterest FAIL.

I did have a WIN, though. I made another, larger infinity cowl. I knitted on size 35 needles and with the same yarn I used for the last one only in charcoal.


The final result is cushy and warm. I did have to buy new sewing needles because I couldn’t find mine, but overall, this was a stress-free project.



Until next time, Kittens.

xoxo ~dawn

All About Reggie

Hey All –

The countdown to Kiss Kill Love Him Still is on. Just two more days!!! I can’t wait to share this book with all of you – it’s a quick, breezy read which is different for me. I think of it as a palate cleanser between heavier books, and I love every word of it.

Today, I’m introducing to the fourth and final main character, Regina (Reggie) Walker. Unlike the other girls in KKLHS, Reggie knew exactly who Jackson was and didn’t mind helping him cheat on Livie. In fact, she convinced herself she loved Jackson, so a little cheating was okay.

Reggie’s a bad girl who has no patience for stupidity, and, unlike the other girls, has a very real reason for suspecting she may have contributed to Jackson’s death.

Below is Reggie’s playlist. A million thanks to Becky Paulk for creating it. My favorite song on the playlist is Magnets by Disclosure featuring Lorde.

Oh, don’t forget to enter for a chance to win a signed copy of KKLHS and an Amazon gift card.