So...The World Will Be Better Off? WRONG!
In Loving Memory Of Allyson's Sheila
How many times have we who suffer from MPD, depression, or any great emotional pain and stress thought we wanted to leave? For many of us, it's always an option lingering in the recesses of our mind that creeps up and builds when we are suffering the most.
In considering this possibility, we always try to find excuses to justify what we're considering doing. How many of us have said, "my family, my children, my friends would be so much better off without me? The pain I cause them in life is so great that they will be better off without me".
This is the story of Sheila and it's the story of Allyson. Sheila was a multiple who succumbed to the temptation to leave us and Allyson is the life-time partner that Sheila left behind. This story will unfold for you through the words of letters written by Allyson immediately following and during the difficult grieving period that continues still. After reading their story, it will be clear, no one was better off with Sheila gone.
(The quotes on these pages are taken from Letters written by Allyson.)
I cannot find the words to express what I have to say. Shelia committed suicide last Thursday. My loss is so great and the weight is so heavy that I do not see how I can manage to get through the next few weeks. I am completely lost and devastated.
2/20/99 I am on stress leave from the post office for as long as I need, which will be at least another week. I am most angry about her leaving me with this financial nightmare which I seem to be unwilling to wade through just yet. And, of course, I am hurt by her not being here. I miss holding her so much. I miss reading to the kids about God. I miss taking her to bed. I miss her laying her poor, exhausted head down on my lap on the couch as I stroked her hair and she slept. I miss going to movies and plays with her.
We had a memorial to her on Monday and it was great. It was here at the house and her friends were all here and reemembered her nicely. I miss encouraging her. I miss her incredible strength, which she was never able to take in. She was my friend, hero, lover, and someone I admired greatly. She gave me so much. I see her everywhere; in flowers, music, the mountains, the Sound.
A friend came by today and took me on a drive to Deception Pass, which overlooks Puget Sound and the San Juan Islands. It was beautiful. Reminded me so much of Sheila. I brought back a rock for her and found a penny. So I know that she was with me.
2/22/99 I hope that the DID's that read these posts realize just how painful it is for your SO (signficant other) to lose you, and how very much you matter to your SO, no matter what the trauma and problems are. Your SO wouldn't be there if they didn't care about you, and weren't willing to go thru this with you. Try to talk to your SO more about what is happening..we can't guess your pain, and we want to help in any way. So much I didn't know until she left me, and how very many secrets she took with her.
2/22/99 I still cry for Shelia and miss our future plans. She is never far from my thoughts. I wish you all could have met her. She was really quite incredible. No one can comprehend her suicide; of course, that is before I tell them the REAL story of her life. Imagine, A DID (Dissociative Identity Disorder) fooling the whole world so well that they think she was a functional monomind who just kinda went crazy from stress one night.
I also have come to realize that I am mourning the loss of about 20 people, and have had to deal with each loss. I really miss reading to the kids and snarking with the teens, trying to get them to understand what the word "co-opeeration" might really mean! And your response post, Angel, made me really miss those moments that you can only have with a DID....the spaghetti....times others can't ever fathom.
Through all the work and pain, there is something rare, precious and beautiful about living, helping, working and loving those whose lives have been so altered by the pain of their abuse as innocent children. Shelia's kids would often come out at night and all they could say was, "but Allyson, we didn't do anything wrong..." over and over again. Or they'd want me to read to them in bed.
"Allyson, you gonna read to us about God tonight?" and holding and rocking them in the night as they fell asleep, and holding them in the morning when they would wake up and say in a wee small voice, "Allyson, we're scared."
And I would say, "of what, Shelia?"
She would respond, " oh, you know, of everything, of life..." and somehow she would then drag herself out of bed and slowly transform herself into a business person for the day.
It's hard for me to look in the closet at her business suits. Her neices came and I told them to try on her shoes and take anything that fit. Funny thing, some were size 8, some 9, and some 10. Hmmm, didn't you ever wonder why there were 9 pairs of shoes?
2/22/99 cont. I have met several DID's who have done the work and are on the other side, and life is now worth living for them. The things that served them in childhood, no longer served them as adults. Living with MPD (Multiple Personality Disorder) can be as painful or DEADLY as doing the hard work is. KNOW that your SO and friends are there for you. TALK TO THEM. NO MORE SECRETS. Secrets kill too. Suicide is painful to those around you. Maybe Shelia is with God and the angels, but right now I am in Hell. And that's not right either.
2/22/99 cont. She told me that her suicide was 52 years in the making and she was right. For me, I went inside and got in touch with myself and asked what would life be like without Shelia, and for me there was no question. I truly loved this woman, and like Jeff said, she was my hero and I told her that often. She was truly an admirable and courageous person that couldn't even see her own strength. She gave to all around her.
2/23/99 I know God loves me, but it's been real hard to see him through my tears. Love those around you. Do what you need to stay sane. Don't do this...please.
2/23/99 cont. I am often greatly comforted knowing that Shelia is with God and can no longer feel the pain. I just wonder if she also misses me, the tender moments, the ones that kept me in the relationship.
2/24/99 I am absolutely in awe of any DID who has done the work and made it to the other side, that is, integration. If this cost the strongest person I've ever met her life, I can't even imagine the pain and agony of this work and in her life. Somewhere amid the shadows of my heart, I hear a voice telling me "see how much it hurts? Do you feel the pain? Imagine what Shelia felt like while she was here."
Consider this too, Joe, when you think about your decision whether or not to leave. Everyone has something, don't they?
2/24/99 cont. I miss her more than I can say. I know that this pain will not go quickly, but will linger like the perfume in her hair, when she would bend over to gently kiss me before she left for work on my days off.
I know that the core person of Shelia did not want to go; and that she is very sorry for leaving me in this Hell. She did not want to die. She was looking forward to New York; the summer with me here; the basketball game that weekend, and the play the next Saturday. She loved our vacation in Thailand, as did the kids. She cooked me Thai dinners and fed me eggs benedict. No, she wanted to stay. That is the thing that sticks. SHE wanted to stay.
Her pain, though, some angry alter, or a wee one in darkness, came to carry off this act because she was too weak to stop it. She just slipped away, from my arms to God's arms. My pain is that now, God rocks her to sleep, not I.
2/25/99 We know and touch more people than we realize. We need to see that we make an impact on everyone we come into contact with. We mustn't forget that we are all One.
2/25/99 cont. I see that those who have survived trauma may be better able to handle it in the future, as our DID partners show us. Just as revealing to me is that our DID partners may need to know that we may not be as able to handle this kind of trauma.
2/26/99 I have thought about walking across the whole damn country with a big sign on my back saying something like, "I am a survivor of suicide. Don't make your loved ones walk this walk."
2/28/99 Today, I'm really really missing my loved one. She should be here spending her free time with me..."our Sundays". Never will I save a Sunday for anyone. Like a reserved parking place for the handicapped. Why must I continue to cry every day? Because if I don't, my heart will absolutely explode.
I can only do things for so long. My life is measured by so longs--can only read for so long, sit for so long, write for so long, eat for so long, think for so long, sleep for so long. But the biggest so long is for Shelia. So long, Shelia.
3/1/99 I hope I sleep tonight. I hope I never know of anyone else who has to go thru this. Hope is keeping me alive, just above the horizon. I hope the sun rises. I hope it sets. I do know that after this, I take NOTHING for granted.
3/4/99 Love, yes; we loved each other deeply, longly. Yet also, everpresent in my heart was a distinct feeling, more like an anchor---I am supposed to be here. Period. Always that thought was, and still is, there. I don't know if any of you have ever felt this, but some part of me always did. And when the MPD came along, that feeling was even more finely distilled, like sugar in morning coffee.
I am supposed to be here. I am your lover, I am also your rock. Your net. I will catch you. I will hold you. Rock you. Rock me. Loves me like a rock, oh mama. I was supposed to be here, for Shelia, until the day she died. But not like this, oh no. It was suppossd to be in the autumn of some faraway year, her all put back together again, like Humpty Dumpty. But now I remember, doesn't that end with: "All the king's horses and all the king's men couldn't put Humpty together again."
3/5/99 But my feet got sooo heavy; what happened to that lightfooted creature that I was created to be? It now lumbers along, trying to sort out its plodding ways. And the lighthouse that used to shine on your path just blew out; just went right out. Like breaking your leg and losing the crutch, and having to walk that damn edge, without the crutch.
3/5/99 cont. Shelia used to ask me in the first years of our relationship, "Do you still love me?" And I would answer, "Still". So I had a gold charm made that says "still" on one side, and "AJ" on the other, and she always wore it.......we would look at each other and one would say, "Still?".and the other would answer, Still.......Now I wear it, along with all her rings, one on each finger,and her gold bear around my neck.......and I call out to her in the night, the still night, to her ever still body and soul........."Still"............
3/6/99 I MISS HER SOOO BAD. That's all I have to say. And it's said with a wailful mourn, like a dirge. Sing me home, sweet mama...take it down. The road is long and lonely, and not one I had chosen. What is the purpose here? Who knows?
3/7/99 I'm swimming as fast as I can. Hope I don't drown.
3/8/99 Last week I got upset to see her reduced to a piece of paper, and this week she is eliminated even from paper. Well, she will just have to take up permanent residency in my heart. I have a lock of her beautiful auburn hair that I cut before she was cremated....
3/8/99 Last week, I got upset to see her reduced to a piece of paper, and this week she is eliminated even from paper. Well, she will just have to take up permanent residency in my heart. I have a lock of her beautiful auburn hair that I cut before she was cremated.
3/11/99 My landscape has been permanently altered. I see her now running wild in the blue wind, .....free as the spirit. She will forever haunt my memory and sail thru my mind. Life is a relentless chore right now. stupid things to do, painful things to feel, and sorrow everywhere. The shades of color of things has somehow changed....tinged with a dull mist, or hidden behind brocade fabric.....thick, heavy, watered down....when I go somewhere, anywhere, it is pointless, mindless wandering......I feel as tho now I am to wander the planet aimlessly for the rest of my life.
3/11/99 How can people possibly think that we would be better off without them. We are better off without no one, for each of us weaves a web, a fabric in time, that is connected to so many people and events, more than even we know.
People whom neither Shelia nor I ever knew are affected by this, and the closer one is to her, the more profound the effect. To remove yourself from the fabric you have woven is to rip out the heart that holds it all together, and leaves strands of memory dangling in its place. You may leave your earthly problems behind for a brighter day with God, but you leave behind a shattered line of travel, one which I am sure you must somehow make amends.
3/11/99NOTE TO SUICIDAL DID'S AND ALTERS AND ANYONE ELSE IN THE MOOD FOR DEATH; YOU MATTER. YOUR LOVED ONES WILL MISS YOU. THERE IS ANOTHER WAY. THIS IS NOT A GOOD IDEA.
Perhaps you think we don't understand your depression. You are right. We don't. I guarantee you this; if you kill yourself, we will--we will enter your depression. We will become your worst nightmare. Is this what you want?
The least you can do is spare the one person in your life who truly cares about you and helps you through the pain you are bearing. Help us to understand, particularly the depth of it. We don't want to know the gory details, only the depth of your pain and the ability you have, at this moment, to contain it.
Your depression and suicide are selfish when they're not shared. We want to see you make it to a world without lost time and hurtful memories. We're willing to walk this path with you, or we would be elsewhere.
It's okay for us to feel like we are here for you. We are all here for someone, and you are special enough to be that person. I really miss caring for Shelia, even with all of her trials and tribulations. She WAS my soulmate, and I CHOSE to walk with her.
I didn't feel burdened or obligated, but rather felt love, loved, and able to give light and love where there was little, especially self-love. If we could each light one candle, we'd light the world.
3/12/99 Yesterday was really hard....a month to the day that Shelia died. I cried alot, all day, and spent most of the evening on the phone in rescue mode. I do need rescuing. My my my. My Shelia is gone. She really is. It is all so unbelievable. I have read the posts about watching and wondering about our SO's (significant others) sleeping. Shelia slept best in my lap or in my arms, and definitely in her own bed. Never slept well in hotels or foreign beds. She was a hopeless insomniac. Guess what I am now?
If she would just come back for one night, I would hold her so tight until she fell asleep. She often fell asleep on my lap on the couch, while I read or watched TV, and often didn't want to move because sleep was such a luxury for her. Guess she doesn't have to worry about that now. I really miss touching her, stroking her hair...
so I work with the gold,and fine weaving it is...
and it feels really old, and never tarnishes
and I dance by the moon, while I wear the gold pin
and I know it'll be soon, that I finish this spin.
and I'll wake up tomorrow, and dream the same dream
a day full of sorrow, as all of them seem.
I'll remember the good days, and cherish them all
while I live in this blind haze in constant freefall.
If you'd like to send your thoughts to Allyson, feel free to email her.
next: Welcome to WeRMany...
Last Updated: 09 April 2016
Reviewed by Harry Croft, MD