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Unread 07-03-2017, 09:41 PM   #201
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I've been to Yellowstone three times, but it's been a long time now, and I understand about the crowds there. Love, love, love the Tetons! I've been to Yosemite, but I think I was about 12 years old then. Glacier is on my list, and now the Sawtooths. I also loved Lake Tahoe!
We took a trip one summer with the kids to Cooperstown and Niagra Falls, so I got a little taste of that area of NY. Lots of places on my bucket list!
I am not as big on camping as I used to be, and my husband has no interest in it at all. His one and only "camping trip" was a year in Vietnam. Need I say more? When our son was in scouts, I did the camping with him, not DH.
I planned a July trip this summer with my DD to the southwest. I think I've been to the Grand Canyon 5 times, but my family has never been. We were going to fly to Phoenix (we're in Maryland), rent a car, and do a big circle through Arizona, southern Utah, and New Mexico. I ended up cancelling due to my slow knee recovery. Didn't think I could handle the long plane ride, hours and hours in the car, and lots of hiking. As it turns out, it's been ridiculously hot there, and lots of wildfires, so it's probably just as well.
She and I are going to have a staycation craftapalooza when DH goes to visit his brother in MN. I do love MN!
Have a wonderful trip, despite the heat. Stay hydrated and take short hikes, and I'm sure you'll be fine. What a great vacation for you! Looking forward to reading your FB posts.
Camping is one of those things - you either love it or hate it. If I'm in a tent in a secluded site with a stream right next to us, I am in heaven! But I have plenty of friends for whom 'roughing it' is the Holiday Inn Express.

Do try to get to the Southwest sometime! I have only seen the Grand Canyon once but it was fabulous; but Zion is probably my #1 favorite national park. Bryce Canyon, Arches and Mesa Verde are pretty neat, too. But I will ONLY do those parks in the spring (March-May); otherwise it is just too hot for me.

There is nothing wrong with a stay-cation. They can be wonderfully relaxing and a lot less expensive too. Enjoy!
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Unread 07-04-2017, 01:00 PM   #202
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Beth & Lynne, I am making notes of all these places so we can include them on our trip out west! I've been to OR twice, have a good friend there and have seen Crater Lake from the air in her small airplane but have not visited it on the ground. Hubby has never been out west, I keep telling him how wonderful it is with the low humidity but he doesn't believe me. Went to SLC for the SU convention 2 years ago but that's all I've seen of the west. I can't wait to go back!
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Unread 07-04-2017, 07:10 PM   #203
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So many great places to see!
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Unread 07-09-2017, 05:57 PM   #204
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A brief update of a very crazy week. The best word to describe my life right now is 'fluid'. Plans change from day to day and big decisions are made on a whim. I was supposed to leave for the west coast yesterday and now the whole trip has been scratched - for now. On Tuesday (I think it was) last week I found a house in Goshen, Indiana (my #1 pick for a town to live in - very artsy, right size, wonderful people with a strong Mennonite/Amish work ethic) that didn't show up on the MLS listings that I was getting from the realtor because it was for sale by owner. I immediately fell in love with it but the price seemed way low for as nice as it looked. So I booked a flight for Thursday for Grand Rapids, my brother picked me up, I met with my financial advisor on Friday, saw the house, saw two more houses that were in the same price range but not anywhere CLOSE to as nice, and on Saturday morning did another walk through and made an offer. By 11 p.m. last night he (recent widower) had accepted it. Closing is set for September 29. That means I immediately go into high gear, getting my house here ready to sell. I plan to do the staging this week and hope to list it in a couple weeks as I need a closing date that is more like mid-October. Part of that is because the one thing the house I'm buying really needs is new flooring upstairs (badly stained carpet) and some painting as well. As anyone who has done either of these projects knows, it is WAAYYYY easier to paint first, lay flooring 2nd (carpet in two rooms and hard wood in one) and THEN move in! So I'm hoping I can do that. It's a gorgeous two story home with beautiful wood work, a fireplace in the family room and a formal living/dining room, three bedrooms upstairs, huge walk in closet, two full baths up, one half bath down, one 3/4 bath in the basement which has two large fully finished rooms. One will be my stamp room (YES - I do plan to get back into it with new friends) and the other will be a library and exercise room. The kitchen is large, has a built in desk, huge pantry, laundry on the main floor and a gorgeous yard with a shed and a HUGE deck - which means less mowing!!! So I am home now until early August when I will go to our cabin in the UP of Michigan for a couple weeks. My brother so graciously gave his entire weekend to go to Goshen with me. It is 115 miles from Holland (where he lives and my brother in China will retire) and IMO that is the perfect distance. So you won't be seeing pictures of Yosemite and Crater Lake ... so sorry. I WILL attach one photo of the house. I'm more than just a little excited. Housing is cheap in that neck of the woods, my property taxes will be less than I pay here on a house half the size, and even with that said, I got a much nicer house than I would have ever dreamed possible.
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Unread 07-09-2017, 06:39 PM   #205
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How exciting!
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Unread 07-10-2017, 01:07 AM   #206
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Hi Beth, just got the email notification of your post. How absolutely wonderful! In my mind, this house was meant for you- you managed to find it despite it not being on the lists you received. It sounds absolutely perfect, and although needs some work, it isn't a major issue or indeed a dealbreaker. I'm so happy for you.Having a fresh start will be so energising, and I'm happy you are going to stamp again too.
So all the unpleasantness you have suffered has flowered into a fabulous opportunity for you-thats karma, and you deserve to be very happy there. I do so enjoy seeing the victim of nastiness get the reward.
It happened a couple of years ago at work, the setter I trained was being given the cold shoulder by a number of people- not speaking to her & so on, making her life a misery. All orchestrated by another female setter, who looks & behaves like butter wouldn't melt in her mouth!. Unfortunately, this was just as I went off sick, and I couldn't be there to support her. After a few months of it, she left. Got a job elsewhere, in the HR department. Took all the exams and is now a HR Manager! So pleased for her.
Looking forward to your updates, as and when you have time, I know you are going to be very busy.XxX
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Unread 07-22-2017, 01:20 PM   #207
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Congrats on the pretty house and new adventures in your life! Wishing you smooth sailing from now on!
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Unread 08-05-2017, 06:07 AM   #208
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Thank you. I really am coming back here a few times a day just to read some of these beautiful notes. This has been a hard week. Who am I kidding? They've all been hard. I'm feeling pretty raw right now though .... I just keep thinking that I can't live in a world where people shun me and refuse to communicate with me. If that's the way it's going to be, then I'd like it to be my choice and not due to rejection. So this morning I was looking (on line) at a tiny little cabin (700 square feet) in a remote part of Montana. I don't know what I'd do there .... read, hang out with my corgis and have on line friends, I guess. Not a good idea. I won't do it. But I am so hurt by the shunning .... the refusal to acknowledge that I even exist. I think that's the worst. I'd rather have someone mad at me - yelling at me than to be completely ignored. Another chapter for my book!!
I too have just stumbled on your thread. I am sorry for these women and the way they are treating you. The pain you are feeling is so real and I wish I could help. I hope in the last few months since this post things are moving in the right direction. If you want to move you should forget the remote cabin in Montana and get back to Holland. The people in MI will welcome you back with open arms. I live close to there and I know that there are soooo many stampers in that area that someone has an empty chair for you to fill!! Plus some wonderful radio stations around the area!

I also wondered if just getting together with a random friend and you stamping while you hang out? Someone to chat with while you each did your own thing??

Also...my mom suffered thru 30years of a friend who was never a friend and she's finally had enough....she's stopping doing things she loves because that lady is there though. I think the best thing is to smile and nod and just show them that they are not going to break you!! Know that you are the better person and (at least with moms friend) it will eat at them to know you can survive and will thrive without them!! My Mom is managing and the amount of people that are supporting her with a continued friendship also feel the pain of this lady and see there is life without her!! I'm proud of my Mom, I'm proud of you! You can get thru this! It does take time. It is a huge loss, like a divorce or death, but you have the strength and the faith to help you one day at a time.

When you are ready to work on one of those kits, take it to a cafe or do it on your lunch hour. You might find people interested in what you are doing and you could stoke the embers inside you with a fun conversation.
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Unread 08-05-2017, 07:24 AM   #209
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I too have just stumbled on your thread. I am sorry for these women and the way they are treating you. The pain you are feeling is so real and I wish I could help. I hope in the last few months since this post things are moving in the right direction. If you want to move you should forget the remote cabin in Montana and get back to Holland. The people in MI will welcome you back with open arms. I live close to there and I know that there are soooo many stampers in that area that someone has an empty chair for you to fill!! Plus some wonderful radio stations around the area!



I also wondered if just getting together with a random friend and you stamping while you hang out? Someone to chat with while you each did your own thing??



Also...my mom suffered thru 30years of a friend who was never a friend and she's finally had enough....she's stopping doing things she loves because that lady is there though. I think the best thing is to smile and nod and just show them that they are not going to break you!! Know that you are the better person and (at least with moms friend) it will eat at them to know you can survive and will thrive without them!! My Mom is managing and the amount of people that are supporting her with a continued friendship also feel the pain of this lady and see there is life without her!! I'm proud of my Mom, I'm proud of you! You can get thru this! It does take time. It is a huge loss, like a divorce or death, but you have the strength and the faith to help you one day at a time.



When you are ready to work on one of those kits, take it to a cafe or do it on your lunch hour. You might find people interested in what you are doing and you could stoke the embers inside you with a fun conversation.


I made it to the end!! So glad you found such a gorgeous house!! I live by Kalamazoo so if you ever need to stamp, give me a shout. I think we are fairly close. Googled it. About 45 miles!!! [email protected]

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Unread 08-06-2017, 03:02 PM   #210
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Oh that is awesome! Yes, you are about half way between Goshen and Holland. We will have to get together sometime. I actually applied for a job in Niles, MI but it didn't work out because I can't do that long of a commute 5 days a week (I was hoping to work from home 2 or 3 days). Anyway - that is very cool. I also found out there is a member of FOUNDERS CIRCLE in Goshen!!! I am going to join one of her groups. I've had a little interaction with her about my situation here because she knows my former upline. It was all positive interaction - I am definintely NOT about tearing people down but I wanted her to be sensitized so that if my name ever came up, she'd have a bit of the back story.


I am busy, busy, busy packing! My basement was INTIMIDATING and took almost 3 weeks of sorting, reorganizing and packing but it is DONE, including my stamp room!!! Woo Hoo!! I leave for our cabin in the UP of Michigan this week, get back August 20, am here for just three more weeks to finish up the packing and then I leave on September 13! I am hoping for a relaxing Fall to unpack slowly and get to know the area. I probably won't even look for a job until sometime in November.

My house here is for sale and it's been a bit discouraging because I was always told that 'starter homes' (and mine could be classified as such) go like hotcakes and mine would sell in 24 hours. Not so! The main issue is that I'm on a busy street. It has never bothered me at all but if you are super sensitive to street noise, it might be an issue. They did an open house today and there is a couple coming back tonight for a second look and their realtor said to expect an offer yet tonight or tomorrow. I'm excited and hope it isn't a real low-ball number. I did drop the price once already and can't afford to go any lower.
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Unread 08-06-2017, 05:09 PM   #211
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Good luck with the sale of the house, Beth!I am sure it was a ton of work going through everything, but I bet it feels good to only have the stuff you want to keep packed. We've been in our house for 31 years now. I can't imagine having to pack up.
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Unread 08-07-2017, 07:59 AM   #212
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More good wishes for the sale from me, Beth. It sounds as though wonderful things are happening for you- we always get told that things happen for a reason, maybe when you are finally settled in, with a new circle of friends, what has happened can be put to rest, in your mind.
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Unread 08-13-2017, 08:40 PM   #213
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I finished packing up my basement on Wednesday, packed for vacation on Thursday and left for our cabin in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan on Friday. On Thursday evening, as I was mowing, a realtor called, asking if she could show the house. So I left my lawnmower by the garage, grabbed the dogs and we went to the park. Usually I get a text in about 30 minutes that they're done, but I wasn't getting anything so after an hour and a half, I drove home and found they were still there! I figured that was a good sign, and it was.

Yesterday morning I got their cash offer with home inspection waived and I got to pick the closing date! They were quite a bit off my asking price, but I decided to take it because of the things just mentioned - no hassle and only 10 days between closing dates. I was dreading the thought of owning two homes for any length of time at all. So that piece of the transition has now been figured in and all I have left to do is find a job when I get to Indiana. I don't think I'll have any trouble with that, although I do expect to take a sizeable pay cut.

So my week of vacation truly IS a break for me - mentally as well as physically. Today we took the dogs for a long kayak ride on the AuTrain River. After some initial panic, they settled in and did very well. The reward at the end was to go swimming in Lake Superior.

I'm still hoping for some closure back in Fargo-Moorhead but don't think I'm going to get it. Two weeks ago there was an incident where a local woman threatened to kill two Somalian women in a WalMart parking lot. It was recorded on video by one of the Somalian women and went viral. Fast forward three days - the chief of police invites all three women to the police station (safe place) for them to sit down and talk. They were able to resolve their issues (there was a piece of the story that had unfolded before the video cam was turned on) and reconciled. I watched it on the news in tears, and in amazement that three women from different cultures, where one had threatened to kill the others were able to resolve their issues and my former friends who know me well and are of the same faith, with the worst thing I've done being that I begged them to hear me, refuse to meet, refuse to listen, refuse to extend grace and refuse to forgive - and the church leaders, unlike the chief of police, don't want to get involved. I shake my head in disbelief but I don't think I'm going to get the closure that would give me the best chance at a fresh start in Indiana. So I am telling myself that when I leave, I can take with me the wonderful memories of 27-1/2 years and leave those of the past 16 months behind. The biggest problem is that - even after all this time - I have a hard time believing this has happened. It is just surreal. These were wonderful friends. And they want NOTHING to do with me - now or ever. I will NEVER get my head wrapped around that, and I just pray that once I move, I can quit trying to because it will never make any sense.



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Unread 08-14-2017, 12:18 AM   #214
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Hi Beth, this is wonderful news. So, so happy for you.
I think that the only closure you can get with these people is to firmly shut the door on that part of your past yourself. To help you with closure, you could go to your church, and just say a prayer for them, say goodbye, and wish them well. What they have shown, all of them, is hypocrisy of the highest order- they will have to eventually face their responsibilities for their actions, not you. So hold your head high, and walk off to a wonderful new life.
And, depending on how you view such things, just maybe, it all had to happen to give you this opportunity to really change things in your life? Sending hugs, Shaz X
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Unread 08-15-2017, 12:57 PM   #215
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Hi Beth, this is wonderful news. So, so happy for you.
I think that the only closure you can get with these people is to firmly shut the door on that part of your past yourself. To help you with closure, you could go to your church, and just say a prayer for them, say goodbye, and wish them well. What they have shown, all of them, is hypocrisy of the highest order- they will have to eventually face their responsibilities for their actions, not you. So hold your head high, and walk off to a wonderful new life.
And, depending on how you view such things, just maybe, it all had to happen to give you this opportunity to really change things in your life? Sending hugs, Shaz X
Good words of wisdom. I agree completely. So grateful for the love and support I have received on this forum. It has truly been a balm to my hurting heart. Thank you all and I'll keep you posted as we begin the next chapter.
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Unread 08-15-2017, 03:00 PM   #216
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Hi BethIt's just short of four months since you wrote your first post here at scs about your situation. What an amazing story - look how far you've come! Your style of writing is really engaging and made your story incredibly compelling. You've had twelve THOUSAND views! I - and many others - have been with you from the start - hoping things would work out for you in this deeply impossible situation - and yet despite everything pulling you down, you kept going and have truly found a resolution.
I have never really heard of "shunning" except in like 19th century novels - or during puritan times. Reading your story has made me, and others I'm sure, realize this stuff must still go on all the time, all over the place. I live in NYC - my few friends and I joke that if someone ever "cut us off" we wouldn't realize for a couple of years - that's just how it is in a city of 8 million people. But that is not the norm outside of huge cities. I keep thinking that one day I'm going to turn on the tv and see a movie about your story, or see your book being reviewed on "The View" or something. And I'll say to myself - I know that woman - haha!
Aside from everything else you've also helped me develop a great affection for corgis - honestly I never used to care for them much! I think your story - your experience - is really so important. I guess it's about how these "small town/small minded" women shunned you because you had a brief period of "bizarre" behavior after a stroke? It's so strange to me, but I now suppose shunning continues in our time - people could learn so much from you. And of course - the big story isn't about them, but about you and your great courage and persistence. And the wonderful community of women here at SCS. Anyway - take care! I wish you all the best! I'd say you have several hundred new friends on SCS. I know you still have a ways to go - but I just feel that everything is going to work out just fine for you - God is looking after you. And you can imagine what New Yorkers would say about these women - "&@$?!! 'em!"
Sincerely
Stefany
PS but don't let this be the end - keep us informed about your "new" life. (The UP is fabulous - my husband is from Michigan & we went to the UP for our honeymoon - 20 years ago!)
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Unread 08-17-2017, 08:43 AM   #217
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Your words of affirmation and support have me in tears. I am leaving Minnesota with a broken heart and, in many ways, with the lowest self esteem I've ever had. I keep wondering what in the world I could have done to cause SO MANY people to abandon me and seem to hate me (at least some of them). I had some experiences in my childhood that form a backdrop to all of this and cause me to question my worth, my judgement and my ability to have deep and meaningful relationships - as I THOUGHT I had with all of these women. I feel duped. Betrayed. Confused. And wonder what I did to cause it all. It's one thing to deal with this stuff in your teens and twenties when you have many years ahead to figure it out and achieve stability. I thought I had done that, as I had almost 30 years of my life that were nearly flawless (occasional squabbles with my brother and one major falling out with a friend a decade ago). But I thought I was as stable and emotionally healthy as anyone. And then this. It has caused me to question and doubt everything and wonder if I will ever trust again. On one hand, I look forward to a new community where I can visit new churches, stamp groups, get to know new people and get a fresh start. And then I think, "NO WAY!" I'm going to be a recluse in my cozy little house, enjoy my dogs and never ever take any risks again. I know that's not healthy - nor would it even be possible - but at the times when I'm driving and have to pull off the road because I'm crying so hard, that becomes the most attractive - and certainly the safest - option.

Your words and the words of all the women here, as well as a lot of other close friends who weren't involved in stamping, have given me the strength and courage to keep putting one foot in front of the other. That's really all it is. When I look back over the past four months from when I started this thread (truly expecting it to be a few suggestions on how to best get rid of my stuff) I am amazed too. And I'm sure that I'll look back four months from NOW and be amazed again. Hopefully I'll be settled, in a new community, making new friends and have found a new job. And I WILL keep you updated as those things transpire.

But - and this is the lesson for not just me but for all of us - I have learned that 'one day at a time' is more than a song, it's more than a platitude. It IS the way to survive times of crisis. It's the only way I've gotten through this past year. Sometimes it's one hour at a time. But you just keep moving forward and yes, there are times when it's three steps forward and two steps back, but the overall direction is forward. You ladies here have no idea how big a part in my journey you have played. I am so deeply grateful, and what you have written here is something I will print and put on my refrigerator for the tough times that are still ahead. I'm a very introverted person so it's hard to take risks in friendship. Yet I did it here, and look what happened. I got a group of ladies who have rallied around me and encouraged me over and over and over. As far as a book or a movie? No movie (ha!) but yes, I am quite sure there will be a book. I even have a publisher who has contacted me which would be awesome, as self-published books don't tend to sell very well. This is a major publisher who was contacted by a friend of mine who knows my story and has some connections there. I need some distance from this all to gain the perspective I need to put it all together but I also know that I don't have to wait until I can put a nice pink ribbon around it all to tell my story. We are all a work in progress, and I am no exception.

Thank you for this post. I just read it to my brother. He was amazed that a group of women from all over the world who share just one hobby in common can become true friends - but he is a mathematician and doesn't have a strong 'feminine side'. Ha!
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Unread 09-03-2017, 07:32 PM   #218
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Beth I just found your thread this evening. I didn't read the entire thing but skimmed the first 50 posts and then came to the last 17 (I have my threads set to display 50 posts per page). I am horrified at the experience you have gone through, there are no words.

That said, I was so thankful to read, in the last few posts, that you have purchased a wonderful home in another location. It looks lovely from the photo you posted. Blessings to you as you settle in to your wonderful new home and look for work there.
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Unread 09-06-2017, 02:11 AM   #219
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I hesitate to write an update here because it is one I am not proud of. But in the interest of honesty and full disclosure, I feel that I need to. This entire 16 months has been a rollercoaster and it's been pretty intense the last few weeks as I have approached my moving date with no answers, no explanations, no apologies. I know that I'm not going to get them but I am in so much pain that I keep trying. I think I have finally learned my lesson. These women are cruel and not worth it.

About a month ago I wrote to the mayor of my city to ask if she would consider facilitating a meeting between myself and some of the people who have broken my heart - similar to what the chief of police in Fargo did. She passed me on to the city administrator who promised to call me last week. She didn't. So then I reached out to a police lieutenant who also promised to look into it and call me. He did not respond either. I felt like they must be hearing horrible things about me to reneg on their promises - or else they just didn't care. As my therapist keeps pointing out to me, I keep touching the burner of the stove to see if it's still hot. And it always is. So I continue to add wound upon wound upon wound as these people deceive and betray me. I am either an eternal optomist or a complete fool because I keep trying.

But last Wednesday night I was beside myself with pain. I couldn't stand it any longer. I drove to a remote county road that passes over Interstate 94 (no exit there - you can only get there via back roads), parked my car, climbed over the rail and was sitting (at first) and then standing (when LE arrived) on the edge, trying to muster the courage to jump into the oncoming traffic. Two sherrif deputies talked to me from a distance, I was crying and they were trying to get me to come back over. The thing that I hadn't factored in was that the Hwy Patrol would stop traffic and that cars of totally innocent people would be backed up, inconvenienced through no fault of their own due to my drama. I couldn't stand that. I felt so responsible for ruining their evening. So after about an hour (maybe a bit less) I climbed back over, was quickly tackled by two deputies, thrown to the ground and hand cuffed. It was horrible. I was taken by ambulance to the hospital where they monitored me, video taped me and generally made me feel like a worthless piece of crap. The worst part of THAT whole part of the drama was that I was stressed, tense, have NEVER been able to pee on demand and couldn't give them the urine sample they wanted. I wasn't trying to be difficult - I simply wasn't able to. So they 'punished' me for that by not letting me have anything to eat (it was 9:00 p.m. by now). The humiliation of being treated like a 5 year old was probably THE WORST part of all of the situation and I WILL write a letter of complaint about the doctor who made that order. Eventually I was able to give them what they wanted and transferred up to an adult psych unit where I spent 6 days, getting home just tonight. I'm glad to be home, am FRANTIC because of all I have yet to pack and am very, very shaky. This last week has left me more broken than I was before. I move a week from today and SOMEHOW I have to pull it together and finish packing. I am so tired and all I can do is cry. I want to die just from the pain of it all. But I learned that if I'm ambivalent, I need to not be going to overpasses because it's going to end badly for me. My heart is shattered, I am so confused by ALL that has happened and I just LONG to get to Indiana where I can get a fresh start.
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Unread 09-06-2017, 10:36 AM   #220
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I am glad that you updated, but sorry to hear what it has come to.First and foremost, do you have a therapist lined up in Indiana? If not, please make that a priority now. If you need to, hire someone to help you finish packing.
Beth, nobody's life should be more important in your life than yours. You are way more important than what these ladies may or may not think of you. Honestly, at this point, do you really even want to be friends with them? Your doggies depend on you, and they love you unconditionally. You will make new friends in Indiana. The stove is still hot, so move on!
I know it's not that easy, and I have never been in this situation, so I don't know your pain, but you need to go to the new life you are making for yourself.
I hope that today finds you packing and dreaming of new things to come.
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Unread 09-06-2017, 03:10 PM   #221
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I am glad that you updated, but sorry to hear what it has come to.First and foremost, do you have a therapist lined up in Indiana? If not, please make that a priority now. If you need to, hire someone to help you finish packing.
Beth, nobody's life should be more important in your life than yours. You are way more important than what these ladies may or may not think of you. Honestly, at this point, do you really even want to be friends with them? Your doggies depend on you, and they love you unconditionally. You will make new friends in Indiana. The stove is still hot, so move on!
I know it's not that easy, and I have never been in this situation, so I don't know your pain, but you need to go to the new life you are making for yourself.
I hope that today finds you packing and dreaming of new things to come.
No - I absolutely do NOT want to be friends with these women. Even the two who I was closest to, who I still have a hard time comprehending what they did, I have no desire to see ever again. I haven't pursued getting closure with them. But I HAVE asked their pastor and elders of the church - where we all go - to meet with me. They have refused, and - more than that - they've let me know I'm not welcome there. There are no words to describe how much that hurts. There are clear stories in scripture that teach us about loving the unlovely, forgiveness, reconciliation and grace. (The adultress Samaratin woman who met Jesus at the well. The pharasees wanted to condemn her, stone her - but Jesus said, "Let him who is without sin cast the first stone." ) I want that passage explained to me BY THE PASTORS in the context of my situation. What have I done that does not fall under grace; that cannot be forgiven. They won't even acknowledge me. And they're not going to. So at this point THEY are the ones I need to let go of. They WILL answer for their actions; it is not mine to seek vengeance (although there are times I'm tempted ...).

As far as getting help in Indiana, I will - if I need to, but I don't think I will need it. My problems are HERE. I had no mental health issues before last year. I have had three trips this year - three weeks to China in February, a trip to North Carolina over the holidays and more recently, a week at our cabin. Every time I get out of town, I feel like my old self - perfectly fine, energetic, not depressed at all. THAT is why I'm moving. I loved my job here. I loved this community. I wanted to retire here. But the pain had become too intense and I had to cut my losses and move on. I know I'll be homesick when I get there but there are a LOT of positives in this move - a nice home, closer to my brother, several very good job prospects. I'm excited to get there. I just have to make it through one more week.
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Unread 09-07-2017, 03:11 AM   #222
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Hi Beth, I was so sad to read your update. I cannot imagine what is going through your mind, you must have felt so desperate.
I am happy to see how much you are looking forward to your move, and can see so many positives.You have coped with everything that has happened, you can cope for just one more week.
It is good that you know in your heart that you will be leaving a place that has become toxic to you, due to the actions of others.You can move on with a clear conscience, something they cannot do. Although not a churchgoer, I am shocked at the disgraceful behaviour of the elders and pastors, of all people they should have been trying to mend the situation, not turn their backs on someone whom anyone could see needed them. They too, should take a long hard look at themselves. You know we will always be here for you, and are looking forward as much as you to hearing about your new start. Sending you much love, and gentle hugs to keep you strong. XxX
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Unread 09-07-2017, 10:41 AM   #223
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Hi Beth, I was so sad to read your update. I cannot imagine what is going through your mind, you must have felt so desperate.
I am happy to see how much you are looking forward to your move, and can see so many positives.You have coped with everything that has happened, you can cope for just one more week.
It is good that you know in your heart that you will be leaving a place that has become toxic to you, due to the actions of others.You can move on with a clear conscience, something they cannot do. Although not a churchgoer, I am shocked at the disgraceful behaviour of the elders and pastors, of all people they should have been trying to mend the situation, not turn their backs on someone whom anyone could see needed them. They too, should take a long hard look at themselves. You know we will always be here for you, and are looking forward as much as you to hearing about your new start. Sending you much love, and gentle hugs to keep you strong. XxX


You've all been so incredibly kind and gracious. I haven't felt judged here, and I haven't even gotten much well-meaning, but mis-guided advice. Everything has been encouraging and sound and I am so grateful. This is one of the first places I come when the tears are overflowing - which, frankly, is most of the time. I wonder if I will EVER stop crying. Six more days. I will make it. I love you ladies .... seriously, I do. You have been more than kind. You've carried me through the darkest season of my life.
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Unread 09-07-2017, 11:04 AM   #224
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How's the packing going today?
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Unread 09-07-2017, 12:53 PM   #225
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I am so happy you have a new home to go to. This has been a toxic environment for you. The possibilities are amazing with a fresh start. Try to leave your pain and frustration behind. You still need to take care of you and your doggie friends first. Will they get new treats to acclimate them to the new place?
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Unread 09-07-2017, 02:38 PM   #226
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Your bravery continues to be an inspiration to me. You've gone through a lot and have been so willing to share it amazes me. I'm especially gratified that you are really looking forward to the next phase of your life.

Sending you hugs and wishes for safe journey to your new home.
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Unread 09-07-2017, 09:39 PM   #227
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How's the packing going today?


It's coming along. Living room is done. Master bedroom is about half done. I have friends coming this weekend to help pack the kitchen. Tomorrow I will work on the bathroom, closets and guest room.
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Unread 09-07-2017, 09:42 PM   #228
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Your bravery continues to be an inspiration to me. You've gone through a lot and have been so willing to share it amazes me. I'm especially gratified that you are really looking forward to the next phase of your life.

Sending you hugs and wishes for safe journey to your new home.


I'm not feeling very brave, but I am grateful for your kind words. The one thing that I know for sure is that I've never worked harder than I have the past two months. My goodness .... moving is a lot of work!!! Especially when you're doing it all alone!!
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Unread 09-07-2017, 09:48 PM   #229
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I am so happy you have a new home to go to. This has been a toxic environment for you. The possibilities are amazing with a fresh start. Try to leave your pain and frustration behind. You still need to take care of you and your doggie friends first. Will they get new treats to acclimate them to the new place?


It is going to be an adjustment for them but I think it will be a step up. For one thing, we'll have a patio door that they can look out. That's something they've never had here. The only way they could look outside was to jump up on the coffee table which was a 'no no' - not that it deterred them, when I wasn't home!!! They were at Yuppy Puppy (our kennel/day care - which they LOVE!!!) while I was in the hospital and will be there again this next week when I go to IN for the closing and stay for 6-7 days to paint the second floor. I get back to MN on 9/23, finish up any loose ends the 24th, the van comes the 25th to load, and we close the 26th. But for all practical purposes, the 13th is the day I'm leaving.
Zak is going to miss his little friend, Cody - a mildly autistic boy a few doors down. They adore each other and I wish I could take Cody with us. He is such a sweet boy, as is his little brother Dylan.

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Unread 09-09-2017, 10:44 AM   #230
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Quick update. Three different friends came over yesterday to help me pack. We got the kitchen almost done and that is huge. Also, last night I had a very good conversation with a police lieutenant about the incident last week and some of the misunderstandings that have occurred with their department. I have a passion for providing mental health training to law enforcement agencies and would absolutely LOVE to do that. There are ways to talk to people who are in great distress that can go a long way towards de-escalating a situation. You can be firm and direct and still gentle and compassionate. Too many officers don't have a clue how to do that. The lieutenant I talked to last night was great. He didn't have all the answers to the questions re: the police reports that these ladies have made, but he was very sympathetic, kind, gentle. Even more importantly, he listened and didn't interrupt a million times or express frustration with me. I'm in a much better place today because of that.
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Unread 09-09-2017, 11:17 AM   #231
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Glad to hear it.I would think that de-escalation techniques would be part of all officer's training.
The night my dad died, my mom talked about how good the police were. He had gotten out of bed, got a blood clot to the lung, and collapsed. She called 911, and is so thankful for the officer that sat with her in the kitchen, talked, and calmed her, while the paramedics were working on him.
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Unread 09-09-2017, 12:03 PM   #232
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Glad to hear it.I would think that de-escalation techniques would be part of all officer's training.
The night my dad died, my mom talked about how good the police were. He had gotten out of bed, got a blood clot to the lung, and collapsed. She called 911, and is so thankful for the officer that sat with her in the kitchen, talked, and calmed her, while the paramedics were working on him.

Law enforcement officers, like the general population, have a full range of personalities. (Dispatchers, too.) I think that, whenever possible, dispatch tries to match an appropriately gifted officer to a call. The first two officers who came to my house 16 months ago were wonderful and I've had contact with some other very gifted, soft spoken and compassionate officers. The one last night was that way, and the main officer who responded to the interstate incident last week was also very kind. When he brought my purse to me at the hospital (had to retrieve it from my impounded car), he had tears in his eyes as he told me how frightened he was when I was standing on the ledge and appeared to be timing the traffic so as to jump in front of a semi (I was). There are some good LE officers who have had special mental health training, just as there are some officers who are trained for SWAT and/or negotiations with a subject in a volatile situation, or really strong, athletic types who are good in intensely physical situations. One time when I was very upset, about six months ago, I did call and ask to speak to an officer and specifically asked the dispatcher to connect me with someone who would be calming and compassionate. She did. He was great. But, of course you can't have soft spoken, gentle officers responding to every situation. There are a lot of bad guys out there who, frankly, need the loud, commanding kind of officer coming after them with weapons drawn and/or a canine. They are all trained, to some extent, to handle any situation but their natural bent is going to make them well suited for particular types of situations. In a small town where there may only be one or two officers, you get who you get. I've had a few who were horrible, including one just a few days before the interstate incident. He was horrible. Not obnoxiously loud or threatening; he just had NO CLUE how to respond to a distraught person. He was trying to joke with me and make light of the situation. That was almost worse than being yelled at. Anyway - all of that to say - most of the officers I've had contact with have been good (the one last night was exceptional) but I've had a few (including our deputy chief) who have really hurt me. I'm fragile. No doubt about it. I didn't used to be that way and I don't like it and I hope I regain my emotional backbone, but I am so raw from all that has happened that I just cannot handle a harsh voice right now. It's counterproductive and just adds to my pain.
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Unread 09-29-2017, 06:06 AM   #233
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I thought I should post a quick update since it's been a while. We HAVE completed our move. I went to Indiana for the closing on my house on 9/15 and stayed a week to clean (the house was filthy ....) and paint. Then was back in MN over last weekend to finish things up there. Moving van was loaded on Monday, closing on my house there was Tuesday and we left for IN, arriving here on Wed. I've been scrambling to get a couple more rooms painted before my load arrives tomorrow.

Although there is still a great deal of pain associated with my stamping friends and church, I DID get a bit of closure last Sunday when I met with three elders and they assured me I had done all I could to mend fences and that I could leave with my head held high. They also assured me they had asked the women (multiple times) to meet with me but they wouldn't even consider it, and of course, they couldn't force them to. (All true - and helpful to hear.) I also have an ally/fried in the police department there who has been SO KIND to me, SO CONCERNED for my pain and reached out to me numerous times and is trying to get me some answers there too. I had a call from the chief of police about three weeks ago - which was NOT helpful because he had so much misinformation. That made the conversation rather meaningless but this lieutenant has really filled a gap and has helped me immensely.

My #1 problem right now is EXTREME fatigue and sleep deprivation. It's nothing short of miraculous that I was able to make three long trips without incident, considering how full/heavy my car was and how sleep deprived I was. Many years ago when I was managing a resort - during a busy Fall color season, when we were terribly short staffed - I got myself into a situation like this where I was so sleep deprived that my body couldn't let down and rest. After it was all over, I ended up in the hospital for two days where they basically knocked me out with sodium amytal and that helped me turn the corner. I MAY be needing something like that again if I can't get this turned around. Once my furniture arrives and I have my own bed and there are no more deadlines, I am hopeful that i will be able to get back into a normal sleep routine (which means going to bed at a reasonable hour instead of painting/unpacking until 3:00 or 4:00 a.m.)

So all in all, things are going well. I LOVE this town, and I have NEVER had such a strong sense of being where I'm 'supposed' to be. I've met the nicest people, made a few friends already and am excited about a fresh start. I'll update again once I've gotten a bit more settled but wanted all of the friends I've made here to know that I AM moved and am doing pretty well, all things considered. Again - the encouragement I've received here has been no small part of the reason I've survived this ordeal. I'm eternally grateful.
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Unread 09-29-2017, 11:31 AM   #234
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Very glad to hear that you are in a good place, and starting fresh.Best of luck on the sleep situation.
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Unread 09-30-2017, 06:33 AM   #235
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Wow, it is amazing what you have accomplished! Enjoy striding into your new life. Blessings always.
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Unread 10-04-2017, 01:27 AM   #236
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Glad to hear things are going well. I hope you're able to get some rest soon.
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Unread 10-16-2017, 05:10 PM   #237
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I have main floor and second floor mostly settled. Long days and short nights, but I will start to slow things down now and the basement (which includes my stamp room) will go more slowly. I need to finish painting first. I have started applying for jobs and get out every day with the dogs to visit a different park in the area. Otherwise, I'd be working 24/7. I don't really have an 'off' button when it comes to getting my house in order, but it's caught up with me (dehydration, fever) and so that forced me to slow things down. My recovery from the last year and a half will be a slow and arduous process ..... no support here and lots of flashbacks/memories etc. But I have no doubt that this is where I'm supposed to be. My brother came down the weekend that I moved in and the following weekend we went to our cabin in the Michigan UP. Kayaking was wonderful therapy. In two weeks we're singing up in Holland. So I'm getting to see quite a bit of him, and that's been really nice. My best from NC was also here last week. I've made it this far and I'm finally able to say with conviction that "I am a survivor". You have all been a part of that and I will always be grateful.
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