Why We Haven’t Written in a Year

Trigger Warning: I am going to talk about my experiences with mental illness and suicide. If these things upset you too much, I hope you will skip this post but stick around the site. Our recipes and stories are generally much more palatable.

It really has been over a year since we posted an entry. Wow. A lot has happened. The blog got wiped out during a design change and had to be rebuilt. The boy got old and moved out. We’ve gotten out of the chicken business. We’ve gained and lost pets.

But none of those things are the real reason we haven’t written.

I’ve written before about being bipolar, but then I focused mainly on the manic side of things. For the past 18 months or so, I’ve been fighting the other side, the depression. We’re all familiar with depression. I think we all experience it to some degree at some point in our lives.

But the depression I’ve dealt with has been irrational and unceasing. It took over our lives and almost cost me mine. I took a handful of pills back in March and spent 9 days in a mental hospital getting my head back on straight. I came out of that feeling better for a while, but the depression wasn’t done with me.

I don’t remember doing it, so I don’t know what I was thinking or feeling. I don’t even remember the days leading up to it, but on July 9, Paul and I had an argument, and I guess I went down the rabbit hole. I took 5 bottles of pills while Paul was out to lunch cooling off. He found me unconscious on the kitchen floor. I ended up being in a coma for 5 days.

I shouldn’t be writing this now. The doctors didn’t expect me to come out of that coma. They had started talking to Paul about long-term care options. But I did wake up. It hasn’t been easy. I spent 23 days more in the hospital, some of it in a medically induced coma, the rest relearning how to communicate, how to use my left hand, getting back my memories. I still have a trach in my throat, so I still can’t actually talk.

Paul stood by me through all of it. In that whole 28 days, he only came home 5 times. He’s been my rock. While I would completely understand if he were angry with me, he’s never once blamed me. In the larger scope of things, he’s been a saint. My depression has cost us dearly. Our fourth book is never going to happen because of me. I’ve cost him job opportunities because neither of us trusts me to be alone. And I can only imagine the emotional hell I’ve put him through.

I’m not writing about this now in search of sympathy. I’m writing about it because depression is dangerous. Suicide claims more lives than murder even though we don’t hear about it in the news. People who try suicide once are more likely to try again. I tried for the first time when I was 19. This was my 6th attempt.

Am I ok now? Yes and no. I’m not suicidal now. But I have had some emotional instability since I’ve been home. I’ve completely changed the medication I take, and I can tell a difference. But I wouldn’t say that I’m out of the woods just yet. And there’s the trach. I’ve been back in the hospital to get scar tissue in my throat removed, but I’m still weeks away from being rid of it and able to breathe and talk normally again.

Watch the people you love for signs of depression and get them help when they need it. There shouldn’t be a stigma to needing help sometimes, but people can’t always ask for themselves. When someone is depressed, sometimes they don’t realize how bad things are from the inside, and things can get very bad very quickly. Making that offer can make all the difference in the world.

And while we’ve never asked for donations before, I’m asking now. If you’ve got money sitting around doing nothing, we could really use it. Please consider visiting my GoFundMe site. Thank you.

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3 thoughts on “Why We Haven’t Written in a Year

  • September 21, 2014 at 5:20 pm

    Dear Angela and Paul,

    You may not have written this for sympathy, but I am so so sorry that you are going through this now. Our thoughts are with you all as you move forward. You are amazingly generous, passionate people who have touched so many and I hope that you can move through this as smoothly as possible. I have passed on this story to friends and family and asked them to pass it on as well. I will be in closer touch in the coming months to see if there is any possible way that I can help further. It is the least that I can do to repay the kindest that you showed us so many years ago. Love – La and C.

  • September 23, 2014 at 2:57 pm


    I came across this from a link shared by a good man on his FB page. I suffer from the same medical condition. I too, had a really rough run mid through late Summer. I didn’t succumb to it, but became dangerously close. It required me to admit myself into the hospital and seek medical relief and monitoring during the first week on the new meds.

    Bipolar depression is a killer that too few of those that don’t have it understand.

    I applaud your openness and honesty about your struggle.

    If, by chance, some of your friends are uncomfortable and depart your circle it’s on them. I lost some “friends” because they were afraid of what others might think of them having a friend with a “mental illness”. I resent that term. If we were diabetic nobody would give it a second thought. Diabetics have an insulin imbalance. We have a brain chemical imbalance.

    I’m glad you’re here to share your story.


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