Day 2


I’m so excited, as we begin to ascend up into the mountains. When they said Montana was beautiful, they were not kidding. The abundance of mountain tops mixed in with the beautiful floral of oranges, reds, and yellow, as the Autumn trees begin their change from Summer into Fall. I think Autumn is my favorite time of year.

This is my first time camping in years. We have our sleeping bags, tents, knives, and plenty of food. I do believe we forgot our flashlights, but that is okay, we will have a fire to give us light. As we unpack our things, I comfortably settle into my sleeping bag, munching on a bag of potato chips.

I hear someone standing at the entrance on my tent, starring at me. It is my boyfriend. “Why are you starring at me like that?” I ask.

“Are you crazy? Why are you eating in our tent?” He’s scratching his head in bewilderment.

“Why not…what is the big deal.”

“Bears!” He exclaims. “Have you never camped in the wilderness before now?”

“Yes, many of times.” I tell him. We used to camp all the time in Big Bear.

Big Bear is a small, quaint ski town a few hours north of Southern California.

“We always ate in our tents. Actually, we would bring our food into our tents at night so that the raccoons won’t eat our food. Can you imagine how screwed we will be if the raccoons eat all our food…then we won’t have anything to eat tomorrow.”

I am sure that I am making complete sense. But by the look on his face, I don’t think I am making any sense to him. Maybe he hasn’t gone camping in awhile and needs a refresher course on the what not to do’s of camping 101.

He starts laughing. I’m confused.

“What?” I ask.

“Babe, we have bears and mountain lions here in Montana. We are not in California. Raccoons are not our worry. Our worry isn’t that an animal is going to eat our food, the worry is that they will eat us. We do not keep any food in our tents or in our cars or anywhere around our tent site.”

He laughs a huge bellowing laugh. “My god girl, what do they teach you out there in California?”

Now it’s my turn to scratch my head. I crawl out of my tent with my bag of potato chips, as we gather up all our food, including my three-hundred dollars worth of cosmetics and face creams…guess where? Yep, you got it, it is all getting tied up in the tree.

Damn, Montana sure takes their camping seriously.


I’m just a Southern California girl, growing up on the beautiful beaches, wondering along the glorious shores of Newport Beach, wearing only my short-shorts, tank top, and a single pair of flip-flop sandals.

I’ve always been the happy go-lucky flaxen blonde haired girl, who spontaneously woke up one February morning with the crazy notion of moving from the California beaches out to the snowy cold mountains in the state of Montana.

I wonder, “can this Southern California girl survive the treacherous winters in the mountains of Montana?” Perhaps, but what about the wild animals that inhabit the area; such as the wild bears, moose, and the the cotton-tail deer…no that’s not right, they are called white-tailed deer because they have a cute white spot at the tip of their tale that wiggles back and forward when they walk, swaying their hips.

Some of my friends wonder and ask me, “what are you going to do in a state like Montana?” I look at them with a smile on my lips, confident, as I tell them that I am going to be living the simple life. A simple life with my dog, Harley Quinn and my mustang. Mustang they ask….you have a horse? No, silly, I don’t mean that kind of horse, but my Ford Mustang convertible. Imagine that! A convertible in Montana, now isn’t that practical! It’s good to laugh at yourself because I am determined to make this work; afterall, how bad can it be?

I have lived in Southern, California for my entire life. We don’t always have perfect weather. There have been many times when it has been super cold. Actually, I remember a New Year’s Eve when it was a freezing forty-five degrees. We all wore our fake fur coats, mittens, leather boots, and I wore my favorite Russian fur hat. I think that was the coldest it has ever been, it even snowed a few snowflakes that night. So when you ask me if I’m prepared for Montana? I am confident that I am because it certainly can not get much colder than that!

It’s Okay to be Okay

When is it okay to be okay? I’m always preaching that it’s okay to NOT be okay, but sometimes we need to accept that it IS okay to be okay.

The other day I decorated the house for the holidays, which initially I did not want to do, not with the way this past year has played out for me. The past five Christmas’ I have wanted to sleep through, but this year I said, enough is enough. I am so sick of being so sad, that I want to get life back to normal, or as normal as it will ever be.

So…I decided to decorate and celebrate the holidays. People may look at me and say “SHE’S okay” and they can think what they want. They don’t see me crying every day, the social anxiety I carry around with me wherever I go, or the sadness that lives deep-down, inside my heart that won’t go away.

Why do I feel guilty for wanting to be okay, if at least for one day or maybe two? I’m making a choice, to be okay sometimes, but then again, it is okay to not be okay sometimes too. We need to learn to have compassion for ourselves, as well as for others. Love ourselves, because if we can’t, then who can!

Is Suicide Selfish?

When someone would say to me that suicide is selfish, I was the first person to jump down their throats, denying such a thoughtless accusation. My view point was that a person who has completed suicide was an unselfish person because they had stayed with us as long as they had because of their deep love for us – despite their tremendous emotional pain.

However, now that I have lost two loved ones to suicide, I now have a different perspective. I do think, that while they are in their moment of planning, that are being very selfish. Well, isn’t that the definition of being selfish, lacking consideration for others? Isn’t that exactly what they are doing?

I have been in the darkness and understand the pain of wanting it to all end, so I guess you can say I have been on both sides of suicide – the only difference is that I haven’t completed it, so I can’t say what they are thinking at that exact moment.

However, I do know that we have a duty to our loved ones to stay. We are the ones left behind, with ruined lives, living with the pain, asking ourselves why, and what if… They got their out, but now we are stuck with the destruction left behind, and that kind of pain never goes away.

It’s our responsibility to our loved ones to protect their heart and suicide is NOT an option. And don’t say….you don’t understand because I do…sadly I do understand – I wish I didn’t.