Long day.

Went to Barbara Peburn’s brother’s funeral with Jen. It was in Deltona. Barbara said I was a good friend for going all that way. Then she mentioned later that Jen and I were good friends. I think she doesn’t have a clue how much Jen and I would do for her. It’s funny, there seems to be so much love in that family. Marc and Eric are incredible — and they both have [redacted] women in their lives — and they both adore them.

I wish that David & Jen could have had a strong male influence in their lives. I did the best I could and sometimes I wonder if it was enough, especially for David. Then I remember that lots of great men were raised by their mothers.

Had one of those ideas tonight that I wouldn’t be here in __________. They scare me. Then I remembered that I had had the same kind of thought when I was driving by the Volusia County Court House when it was under construction. I remember thinking I would be gone before the construction was through. That was several years ago, not too long after Daddy died. Can I make a connection between that thought after Daddy’s sudden death and the one today after Robert’s?

Jen is being so kind to me in a mature sort of way. Sometimes I talk to her about what I’m discovering with Susan about why I am the way I am. Sometimes she even shares some things with me.

Tomorrow we’re going to see Harry Potter and Saturday is the Florida State game.

I need to be nicer to Mom. She’s not going to change. What has to change is how I react. (Jen said that.) I know Mom loves me, probably a lot in her own way. But there is so much pain, so much loneliness. A woman on the Today Show said Ronald Reagan’s children were estranged from him because they said he never understood them or connected with them. The woman said their expectations were different from those of their parents’ generation when parents were not expected to be concerned about their kids’ psyches.

Susan said it didn’t matter how Mom was raised (even though I’m sure it was strange), and that Mom could have made different choices in her life, the same way I did, that she could have chosen to relate to Dic & me differently.

I’ve eaten less for the last couple of days. I want to lose 10 pounds, and then maybe I’ll decide to lose another 10. With the holidays coming, no less, and me with no job … But I really need to do it. It may be the most important thing I ever do in my life (for me).

I also need to get a master’s degree, maybe in finance, and I need to do it now.

Did I mention I need to look in the mirror every day and tell myself I’m terrific?

I read my first chapter at the Writer’s Group Tuesday. I heard things like, “my pacing was flawless, great opening line, great close of the chapter, wonderful description of the scenes, sexual tension, fun,” — they want to hear more. Christy said she could see it as a movie. And they laughed in all the right places.
Kathleen A. Gagne