Who Am I?

I have written all my life. Writing helps me to make sense of a world I often don’t understand. Poetry is my supreme solace, closely followed by literature and music.

When my son ended his life in 1999 I embarked on the most difficult journey of my life, my grief journey. To survive in this unknown, harsh landscape I had to write. It was for me, the only way I could even begin to move forward. Then in 2009 my darling husband died suddenly and so my journey continues. I write about other issues but because of my life experience, grief and death are continuing themes in my writing life. In our culture I believe there is a fear of death, an inability to accept the inevitability of our mortality, and this creates enormous difficulties for the dying, the bereaved and those around them.

I also live daily with the growing limitations of chronic illness. As I live the slow slipping away of my independence, I grieve the loss of simple pleasures I once took for granted. I have no fear of death, but the thought of losing my ability to perform the most basic of my personal needs terrifies me. Grief is not owned by death.

I have begun this blog in the hope I will create a small ripple in the pond of fear that is currently drowning the reality of mortality and grief. I will continue to skim the stones of my truth, watch them bounce, and see how many ripples I can make.

 

  1. I am so thrilled to see your blog up and running! I’ll be reading each post avidly from all the way across the world. Love and Hugs, Heidi. xo

  2. My friend I have now known you for 40 years and you never cease to amaze me. Congratulations on your blog, I am proud of you. Spin.

  3. Thanks so much Spin. I think you’re rather amazing too. If you look near the top left hand corner of the home page you will see the word follow, if you click on this you will get an email each time I update or add a poem.

  4. I look forward to following your writing more often now, Tricia. You have much wisdom to share – and I want to feel those ripples! Love, Fran

  5. Thank you Fran, and thank you so much for making this happen for me. Without you there would be no blog, my writing partner, my dear friend.
    We will Freefall through the world of writing together.

  6. David spitzkowsky

    Trish great to see your blog up and to be able to read your work. Love it. xx

  7. Thanks David. I’m so thrilled I want to dance naked on the highway. Just as well my dancing days are done. It’s thanks to Barbara and our freefall group of four that I have a body of work worth blogging.
    Hug, hug, hug

  8. I can completely relate to this: ‘Poetry is my supreme solace’. Its the hardships that we go through that make us better writers and add depth to our writing; writing is also therapy and I’m glad that you write to deal with grief and other issues. I’m really sorry to hear about your son and husband who departed from this earth ten years apart of each other, my sincere condolences. I’m currently busy with exams but I promise to come back and read more of your poems as soon as I’m done.

    Peace be upon you

  9. Thank you tshauambea. Good luck with your exams.

  10. Tricia, seeing your words come alight on my screen is a real privilege. Having read your work, and hearing others read it has always been special, and now that you have taken this step to bring it to the online world I look forward to seeing even more of your writing.

    With “Potpourri” and “Vine” you remind me of just how well you weave botanical metaphors into your poetry.

    Love

    Bob

  11. My dear Bob, thank you so much. As I said to David and Fran without our group, the freefalling four, this would not be so. I have grown so much as a writer as a result of the work we share.
    much love

  12. Tricia:

    This is Martin C from the Godless Gross blog. Congrats on setting up your own blog … I think it’s good for creative people to have an outlet for creativity that is their OWN, rather than fighting for space and relevance on someone else’s all the time.

    I frankly haven’t suffered the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune that your published history says you have, but I wanted you to know that your poetry is something I value. Your Silent Scream poem brought back some memories … sounds like you had school experiences rather like mine. I still remember that sense of powerlessness, of being ground by the gears of an unfeeling machinery of injustice, of being completely subject to the caprice and whims of those in power. Today I look back and think “how could they have seen themselves as Christian? … in fact how could they have seen themselves as HUMAN?”. I’m a fairly resilient person, and sometimes I wonder if this poor start in life actually helped to generate some facets of my personality that I : an intolerance of abuse of power, a refusal to accept that things cannot be changed for the better, and the knowledge that just because a bunch of people believe something does not make it true.

    I also wanted you to know that your poetry posts on GG have influenced me to post poetry of my own. As you are no doubt aware from the poems I have posted, my poetry is not at all like yours – yours has a depth and insightful content that I am unlikely to achieve because my poetry is centred so heavily on wordplay and humour – but sometimes it just takes a push from someone else to get things going, and I wanted to say that I appreciate the fact that your work gave me that push.

  13. Oh Martin, your words touch me deeply. When I started this blog my aim was to “skim the stones of my truth, watch them bounce and see how many ripples I can make”. Your words for me are more than a ripple, they are a wonderful wave. I feel honoured if my words have encouraged you to share your poetry. I really enjoy your poems and hope to see more of them.
    We share the facets of personality you mention, I sense for similar reasons.

  14. continuing themes
    reflecting this passer-by –
    palpable ripples

  15. Lovely haiku Brad. Thank you

  16. Tricia, it appear I may have spoken too soon about posting poetry on the Godless Gross blog. Fairfax have made a disastrous attempt to upgrade their blog software. They’ve made a right royal hash of it: using apostrophes and quote marks now results in coded gibberish appearing, but the worst part is that you can’t put in an end of line: all your text appears as one big paragraph.

    This makes it impossible to post poems: they’ll appear as one giant amorphous mass of text.

    I actualy wrote a nice end-of-year poem about the Godless Gross people, which I wanted to publish there, but I suspect Fairfax’s IT people are either too incompetent or too uncaring to fix the paragraphing problem, and I don’t think I can post it as is; it would be incomprehensible and would need decoding to be readable.

    I’ve also noticed another thing: in posting near 5000 posts to Dick, only one ever got rejected. In the two days since the new blog machinery went up, I’ve had 5 rejected … all because they contained some criticism of the blog . Dick was usually extremely tolerant of people disagreeing with him, but whoever is running the show no is not allowing dissent … it’s a bit like the New Limited newspaper who never mention anything bad about Rupert Murdoch.

    In addition, several posts – again, mostly dealing with criticism of the blog upgrade failure were posted, and then were removed afterwards, in an Orwellian attempt to say “no, there never WERE any comments disagreeing”. I actually drafted up some repleis to them, and then found they “never were” when I went back in. Dick never did that.

    Also the blog has closed after only two days of comments. That might be to rollback and restart the blogging engine with some fixes, but it might also be some new “you only get 36 hrs to comment” which is annoying as it was the comments later in the week when the blog opened up to a broad discussion that were most interesting.

    Sorry if this is not appropriate here, but this is the only way I can communicate my frustration to anyone who knows the GG blog.

  17. Martin you can post anything you like here; your poems if you feel like it, just make sure your name is large and attribution obvious.

    I wondered if it would work on Dick’s blog to use // as line breaks. In poetry I know it wont be the same because spacing is a really important part of the make-up of a poem, but it might make it at least readable. I would post one on his blog to test my theory but the bloody comments are closed already.

    Have continued this via email.

  18. Hey Martin did you notice I left the apostrophe out of won’t? Thought this might amuse you.

  19. Long John Silver

    Hey Tricia (and Martin C & any other GG regulars who read this).

    Wishing you a Merry Atheistic Christmas! The arguments over naming rights would have been fun, but you can’t win them all.

    I was disappointed that the IT “Upgrade” has so thoroughly destroyed the GG blog that it has become unusable. The earlier blogs only have Dick’s column, with none of the replies – which means that if Moan tells his friends about how he beat those wicked atheists in a debate, there will no evidence to show what was actually said.

    I notice that there is a new blog up today. It will be interesting to see whether this one works properly!

  20. Hiya Pirate,
    And a merry whatever to you and all our our fellow G G bloggers who may pop by for a peek.

    Martin has written this wonderful poem about the G G blog, and ’cause the system is so stuffed it may not get seen by the regulars. I will check with him and if it’s OK I will post a link to his poetry here, or ask him to post the link on Dick’s blog.

    Don’t hold your breath re this weeks blog, Dick has already posted a comment to say it will close at 2.30 this afternoon and be re-opened by the editors tomorrow morning. Hopefully after the holiday period ends the debacle will be addressed.

    I’m off back Dick’s blog to have a “little chat with alpha”. I could regret it but a womans got to do what a womas got to do.

  21. A woma is a woman without an n.

  22. Hello Tricia,
    I am nominating you for the “The Versatile Blogger Award”
    Check it out: Written Words Never Die > http://wp.me/1YE83
    Congratulations,
    Eric Alagan

  23. Eric I don’t know how to do the linking and “stuff” but thank you again for the thought.

  24. You put a “Like” to one of my songs. After coming across one of your Comments elsewhere I thought you might enjoy

    http://bennaga.wordpress.com/2011/10/26/meeting-point/

  25. Thanks Ben Naga, and yes I did enjoy.

  26. Tricia, Ethel and I deeply appreciated your comment left on our blog about our son Kevin and your son Ken. Grief is not a journey that anyone wants to embark on, but too often we have no choice. We have been going through your poetry and are sometimes amused by it and sometimes moved. Always there is a deep humanity that shines through your lines even when you are trying to stop smoking fags. May today bring you solace and sunshine. May today fill you with an understanding of who you are. May you, Ethel, and I all find peace in our journey from this point into the future.

  27. Tricia, I just received a note that you have been to our blog and have chosen to follow. I feel very honored that there might be anything here to just “lighten the load” once in a while. I’ve now looked around your site a bit and I’m really very touched by the depth of your writing and the way you express both sorrow and hope with words. I will be reading carefully and I hope to get to “know” you very well. Debra

  28. Thank you Debra. Love the name of your blog.
    Tricia

  29. Hi Tricia

    I have nominated you for The Genuine Blogger Award, details on my latest post!

    Love and hugs

    Christine x

    • Thank you so much Christine.
      I have neither the skills nor the energy to fulfill the conditions that come with most of these awards so I just say thanks and accept them unconditionally. Hope this is OK.
      hugs
      Tricia

  30. Tricia, that is absolutely fine! I just think wholeheartedly that you deserve the recognition.

    I often don’t follow them through but when my daughter offered to show me the link process I was off on a mission. And when I am on a mission – well…..! Determined/stubborn – I am both! LOL:)

    Love and hugs

    Christine

    xx

  31. Hello Tricia,

    You’ve got a nice blog up here. I think it’s inspirational. So please keep penning to share the talents you have and keep inspiring! 🙂

    I would like to thank you for visiting my blog and for following it. I hope my blog doesn’t disappoint you and that your visits there have been and will always be a joyful ride.

    Thank you again and lovely day to you! 🙂

    Subhan Zein

    • Hello Subhan,
      Thank you so much for your kind words.
      I too enjoy your blog and find it inspirational. Your words often bring a smile to my face, a smile that starts from someplace deep inside me.
      I look forward to our sharing of words.
      Take care
      Tricia

  32. Dear Tricia,
    Thank you for so bravely sharing your words on my site today on what must be a very painful time of year for you. Even as a father of 2 young boys myself, I cannot begin to even pretend to imagine what you must have gone through and continue to do so. Your note has reaffirmed in me one of the reasons why I tell my story – doing my bit so that our young can grow up in an age where it is perfectly acceptable to say “I’m depressed” and so that one day this invisible demon can be better understood and ultimately eradicated. Your message really struck a chord with me in a way that have only a small handful of all the wonderful comments and feedback i’ve received over the past 12 months. So much so that as I continue to share my story, views and experiences, I will do so not only with the benefit of my own children and all the children of today in mind, but also in no small part in memory of your son.
    Stay strong, stay brave, THANK YOU and God Bless.
    Mark x

    • Mark thank you so much for your caring, empathetic words. They mean a lot. I admire the authenticity and courage of what you are doing.
      I missed your show with Gayana as I’m in hospital at present. I met her a couple of years ago when I was involved with the inaugural Bayside Literary Festival. I hope the show went well and that it takes your words to a wider audience. But then with Stephen Fry on your team your message is sure to be spreading.
      Take care
      Tricia

  33. Hi Tricia,

    I would have emailed this but I find it easier these days to use my IPad so I don’t have to trail upstairs to my computer And I can’t access your email address on this.

    The thing is, my poetry book is now at the printers in its final stage of production! If you would like to send me your address I will forward a copy to you. It won’t be for a couple of weeks or so but I am gathering addresses of my ” special” friends on here so you can all have a copy. Without all of you I would never have dared to do this. Your encouragement has meant the world to me on my new venture into the poetry world. 🙂

    I hope you are feeling better

    Lots of love and hugs

    Christine xxx

  34. Hi Tricia,

    I hope it is not too late to say Happy New Year to you. May 2013 bring you more happiness, love, and success. I would like to thank you because you continue following my blog. I hope my blog posts do not disappoint you and that your visits in there have been a joyful ride.

    Thank you again, many blessings and much love to you. 🙂

    Subhan Zein

  35. Best wishes to you Subhan for the year ahead. Thank you for your warm wishes.
    Tricia

  36. You have a beautiful way about you, haven’t you?
    “Grief is not owned by death”
    Superbly true, my dear.

    • Lucas, thank you for your warm words. I’ve had a quick look at your blog, I sense we share a love of words. I’ll return for a more detailed look when I have more time.
      Bye for now
      Tricia

  37. It’s fantastic that you’re able to use words to explore the many difficulties you’ve had to face. I’m so sorry to hear about your son, your husband and your health. Each alone, a lot to contend with, the triumvirate almost unbearable I’m sure – and yet here you are, and writing beautifully.

    • Pooky, somehow I missed responding to this comment of yours. We’ve shared so much in the almost 6 weeks since you wrote these words, but they mean so much to me I feel I must respond, even though much time has passed.
      I will always write, but it’s emapthetic comments like yours that will keep me sharing. xx

  38. Thank you Tricia for sharing your personal and powerful journey on this and your other pages. How we respond to loss always needs re-evaluation as we go through our lives and it is so special that people are willing to share to help others. Best wishes for where this takes you as I know it is not over in a year or five or ten. Jacquie x

    • Jacquie, thank you for your comment. Your words are a gift, so few people seem to grasp, or maybe it’s that they don’t want to see, the ongoing nature of grief.
      I write for myself, I share in the hope my words will touch others.
      Sorry It’s taken me a while to respond. For some reason I’ve just discovered this. I’m not the sharpest knife in the drawer where computers are concerned, and I have over 7000 unopened emails. I’m a Toit, always intending to get to it. 🙂
      Regards
      Tricia

  39. Are you in Australia? You are such an inspiration!

    • AlishasMa, i’m so sorry I’ve taken so long to respond to your post. I’ve somehow missed it and only realised when another comment came through to this page.
      Thank you for your kind words, and yes, I live in Melbourne, Australia.
      I shall have a look at your website later today. I have health issues and very limited energy so I’m sometimes a bit slow to respond but 4 months is way over the top.
      Take care
      Tricia

  40. I’m so sorry I’m just now finding you.
    And I am quite sure you’ve made you fair share of ripples.

    Many blessings to you,
    Dani

  41. “In our culture I believe there is a fear of death, an inability to accept the inevitability of our mortality, and this creates enormous difficulties for the dying, the bereaved and those around them.”

    Very true. Looking forward to checking out some more ripples.

  42. inbetweenthemadness

    Hi. Long time no speak. Hope you are doing well. Thinking of you and your son at this festive time. Also want to say, during my darkest moments (hopefully I am controlling better now) your comments and blog helped me deeply. Thank you for showing such kindness in a world that every days lacks it more so.
    Keep making ripples.

    • It’s so good to hear from you, and to hear that things are a little better. Your words are a precious gift to me, not just your thoughtfulness regarding my son, although I’m deeply grateful, it’s knowing I’ve helped in some small way. As my illness progresses and my mobility decreases, I sometimes find myself pondering the ‘Why am I here?’ question. When I read your words I feel motivated to dig myself out of the snowdrift of self doubt so I thank you so very much.

      For some reason I’ve not been getting your updates so I’ve just unfollowed and then refollwed your blog in the hope this will make a difference. I’m a bit of a computer doofus but I keep trying.
      Take care
      Hugs
      Tricia

      • inbetweenthemadness

        I’m sorry to hear about your illness. I’m glad I can help motivate in a small way as, like I said, you understanding and no judgemental comments of support really did help me through some dark times. I am much better these days and turning things around.
        I haven’t posted much recently but hope to start updating with poems I have written but not uploaded.
        Hope you keep digging out of that snow drift and know that you are one of lives good people.

        Thank you.

  43. It’s so good to hear from you, and to hear that things are a little better. Your words are a precious gift to me, not just your thoughtfulness regarding my son, although I’m deeply grateful, it’s knowing I’ve helped in some small way. As my illness progresses and my mobility decreases, I sometimes find myself pondering the ‘Why am I here?’ question. When I read your words I feel motivated to dig myself out of the snowdrift of self doubt so I thank you so very much.

    For some reason I’ve not been getting your updates so I’ve just unfollowed and then refollwed your blog in the hope this will make a difference. I’m a bit of a computer doofus but I keep trying.
    Take care
    Hugs
    Tricia

  44. This was fantastically written. I honestly felt honoured to be able to read such good writing!
    I’m sorry to hear that you’ve been faced with such difficulties but I am also glad to see that you’re still going 🙂
    This was so beautifully and emotionally written and yet it is just giving a small introduction in to your blog, your life and, most importantly, yourself.
    I wish you all the best Tricia and I hope that 2015 treats you well 🙂

    • I’m sorry I’ve taken so long to reply to your comment. My health is not good and I’m now suffering from something reffered to as profound tiredness, apparently not unusual as my illness progresses. I’ve almost 24000 unopened emails but I do my best.

      Thank younfor your lovely words, they are greatly appreciated. Take care.

  45. I’ve just begun exploring your blog. What a journey you’ve been on. What a talented writer you are. Keep up the great work!

    • guavacita, I’m sorry that it’s taken me almost 4 months to reply to your comment. My energy is waning and I’m finding writing difficult these days, nonetheless your warm words mean a great deal to me.
      Thank you
      Tricia

  46. I love your blog. You are a gifted writer and poet. I awl with you on this journey. Myoldest son took his life in 2006 and devastatingly my youngest son passed in Aug 2011. Like you I am writing my way through this difficult journey. Bless you my friend
    Simmer Dougherty
    agoodmourning.com

    • My dear Simmer, I’m so very sorry to read about the death of your sons. My heart aches for you. My illness is progressing and I’m finding it difficult to gather the energy to write much these days and so I offer my heartfelt apologies for taking so long to respond to your comment.
      Take care and keep writing while you can. For me it’s been such an important part of my grief journey.
      Hugs
      Tricia

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