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Funkay
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Less of a vent...

Post by Funkay » Tue Mar 11, 2008 3:28 pm

More of a reflection. I just need to get this out somewhere and I didn't want to do it on my blog. It's a long ramble, but as I've never really rambled about this and you guys always have good advice and wonderful comments I decided there was no better time or place. Onward...

Violent crime in the city I live in isn't uncommon. Deaths related to violent crimes are. There are areas around campus that I would not deem safe and would discourage anyone from living if they could help it. Burglaries are common and rape really is something people have to worry about. Death isn't. Fayetteville had three homicides last year. For a city that has around 80k people in it at any given time, that's not a bad number. However, two of those people died in the same incident and I knew one of them. Not very well. In fact, I only met him one time, but that one time changed both of our lives. He was dating my best friend Marcelle's roommate in the late summer of 2006. She committed suicide by GSW while he was waiting for her in the living room. I had met him about six hours before that happened, which was three hours before my friend and I left that apartment (Don't even get me started on "what ifs" of that situation). Nine months later (last April) he and his new girlfriend were shot to death in his apartment just off-campus. It was a big deal because, like I said, homicides are uncommon, especially ones that are as heinous as that one was (I'll spare you the details). It was only a day or two before suspects were named and sought after. And it was only a day or two after that (and after they caught the guys) that Marcelle and I were nearly thrown out of a bar because one of her co-workers was really drunk and told us that she had known all along who it was that killed him because she was sleeping with the guy (we sort of off-hand knew that it was probably for free drugs). We cornered her and made complete emotional assholes of ourselves. I understand why she didn't before they were caught. I mean, if a drug dealer that had just viciously murdered two people told me to shut up, I would. But he was in jail with no bond. Damnit, tell someone! GRR! Anyway, luckily for us the bouncer of that bar was a friend of ours. He just told us to calm down and eventually we got her to talk to the police about it.

The whole situation last year was just really awful, and this was someone that I didn't even really know. All I know is that in the five minutes that I actually spent with him, I learned that he was a compassionate and caring guy. A little strange, but he had good intentions, especially when it came to Marcelle's roommate. He really cared about her and wanted to help her get better. It's just an awful situation that has left me continuously emotionally drained for the last year.

Sunday we had the first homicide of the year (and hopefully the last). My ex-boyfriend's best friend, Katie, was murdered by a crazy ex-boyfriend. Oddly enough, I never met Katie. When I was dating Nick, neither of us saw hardly anybody but each other (I can't imagine why our relationship never worked out). But he talked about her all the time, going so far as to tell me that he had always wanted to date her and was definitely the type of girl he wanted to be with. It never bothered me that he said that because he also said that she and I are a lot alike. A lot of my good acquaintances and a few friends knew her very well. The ex is engaged to a mutual friend of theirs now (and a former co-worker of mine, but that's a whole other bitter story) and actually met at one of her parties. This is much different from what happened last year. This time, so many people that I care about are deeply affected by this tragic event and it's killing me as a result. First of all, I officially wrote the ex out of my life just two weeks ago (Another long story), so I have no idea how he's doing. I'm pretty sure he's never had to deal with anything like this and I just want to make sure he's fine. I'm sure he and his fianceé are dealing with it together (as they should be) but I'm worried. I sent him an email letting him know that I care because I do, so if he doesn't call then it won't be because he thought I didn't want him to. So there. It's still just really crappy.

The worst part of all of this long story is that both murders happened a few blocks from each other, so everyone has a comment about that. The other sucky thing is that I'm a receptionist on campus and the school newspaper sits on the counter in front of me for anyone to pick up. Naturally, everyone has had a comment on "all the murders in that area" and hoping that I "don't live on that street! You might die!" or something. Most of them have been looks of horror and general harmless comments. One was almost a joke. And all of them nearly made me cry. I don't want to deal with this anymore. This is the sixth person my age that I've known to die in the last two years. All of them were from 20 to 24 years old. All of them were basically good people. A few I know for a fact were extremely talented and had promising futures. Now they are gone because of jealous boyfriends, freak accidents, and incurable diseases. It almost makes one believe that there really are people in this world who are too good to be here because all of the circumstances in which they left are too bizarre to be random acts of nature or even of self. Even when Ami killed herself, it was after a strange weekend of strange events that still leaves us scratching our heads. I'm no stranger to mortality. I've watched many people in my family suffer through illnesses and literally watched a few of them die. I've even sat with my sister in the hospital as she was suffering from a debilitating episode related to MS. But somehow, even the with the ones I knew very little, all of them feel closer to home that even my dad passing away. It's the only thing I can't figure out. I figure it has something to with peer groups and them being a bigger influence on my life than I realize or something, but it's really weird.

Oh, well. I guess this is the end of my life's ramble. I just sort of realized that I had never even really talked about any of this stuff. Katie was an artist. I really liked her work and since we have a lot of artsy folks here, I just thought I shared one that I've always liked (I kind of stalked her a bit on MySpace. She and I were the only two people who ever posted stuff on the ex's profile).

Image

This used to be her profile pic and whenever I think about her for the rest of my life I know this will be the image that will pop into my head:

Image

Gillian
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Post by Gillian » Tue Mar 11, 2008 5:43 pm

Oh honey, I'm so sorry to hear it. Life can be terribly cruel sometimes, and tragedies like these can almost make you feel like there's some sinister intelligence at work.

It's hard to imagine what this must be like for you, and I doubt there's anything I could say that would lessen your pain, but please remember we're all here for you, and we'll try to provide you with as much support and comfort as you need.

My heart goes out to you, Funkay. I've really come to admire your spunky, irreverent and bubbly personality and it pains me deeply to see you in such distress.
I figure it has something to with peer groups and them being a bigger influence on my life than I realize or something, but it's really weird.
I think you've hit it pretty much bang on there. It brings the concept of death much closer to home, especially when those people were young and had the rest of their lives to look forward to. Much like yourself.

My deepest condolences.

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Post by Funkay » Tue Mar 11, 2008 7:22 pm

You've said more than enough! Thank you!

I've often toyed with idea that I need an "extended vacation" from my hometown in order to deal with the constant barrage of grief in my life. I know that when I come back it'll still be here, but at least I will have had some time to think things out for myself before having to deal with another situation. A friend of mine has some serious strep issues and I've spent the last hour and half at her apartment giving her a lecture on what meds to take at what time. I think I even found out what's causing her chronic stomach problems. And while I was at it, I fixed a boy problem she was having, too. Tomorrow it'll be something else and tomorrow I'll deal with whatever it is and be grateful that it isn't worse. Even so, I'll still wish I was somewhere half way around the world sitting by myself, cut off from everyone. But, as I don't have the time nor the cash to do that, I'm going to make myself a martini and draw up a warm bath and daydream that I'm sitting on that beach in Dubai. :D

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Post by Hilary the Touched » Tue Mar 11, 2008 7:36 pm

Poor little Funkay . . . :hug
At a time when you're supposed to be gettin' your groove on, here you are being whapped upside the head with reminders of your own mortality. It's jarring and painful, and as Gillian said, just not fair. You sound like you're holding up pretty well though--and reaching out to others, which is all we can do. Continue to be part of something bigger than yourself . . .
And now you've shared Katie with us, so her spirit is even more present.

I think you may be right, though, that a vacation could be just the thing to tweak your perspective. If you've ever hankered after a tour of the Monuments on the National Mall, kiddo, I've got a spare bed with your name on it!

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Post by Funkay » Tue Mar 11, 2008 8:00 pm

I've considered taking a tour of the US, actually. Just a lonesome road trip to see friends who have moved to just about all parts of the country. If I ever decide to do it, then I'll definitely take you up on a spare bed!! As it stands, a bunch of friends, people I kinda know, and people I don't know who know the people I kinda know are going on a trip to a music fest in June. That should definitely help a little bit. I'm trying to stay busy in the meantime promoting a non-profit, Reach Out and Care Wheels (http://www.rocwheels.org) and deciding how I'm going to turn it into something greater in my community. Right now, I'm just in charge of promoting it on the Facebook, but hopefully I can turn it into something greater soon. It keeps me busy, keeps me focused, and most importantly, keeps me sober!!! :yip

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Post by Funkay » Wed Apr 23, 2008 3:52 pm

Here's a bit of an update:

The guy who killed Kevin was just found guilty of two counts of capital murder and is facing the death penalty. I have a feeling that he'll get it. I'm not a fan of the death penalty, but I won't object if that's what he gets.

On another note, there will be a murder trial for a kid I just found out a couple of weeks ago that I know. In January, he killed his girlfriend (also named Katie, oddly enough) and attempted to kill one of her co-workers while she was at work. I knew her brother, who died of leukemia in Feb. 2007. Some friends of mine from high school were practically his family and I met him a few times and heard stories about him on a daily basis. The prosecutors are waiting for the crime lab results, so that got postponed until July. They haven't said they're going after the death penalty, but they probably will. It really sucks, because he was such a good guy. No one really knows what made him snap like that.

The guy who killed the other Katie in March will be tried in May.

I can't wait for this year to be over.

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Post by Gillian » Wed Apr 23, 2008 5:36 pm

I don't blame you, Funkay. You've experienced more than one person should have to in a lifetime.

Hang in there, kiddo. We're thinking of you.

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Post by Funkay » Thu Apr 24, 2008 9:00 am

Thanks. I just really don't have anyone to talk to about any of this and posting it on my blog is the ultimate showing of vulnerability (God forbid I ever let that happen), so this was the only place I could think of to express myself without worry. And I really appreciate the support!

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Post by Hilary the Touched » Thu Apr 24, 2008 10:32 am

Wow--that is a lot of negative energy to have hanging over your head. Until the trials are all concluded, I can imagine it will be hard to kind of turn the page on these horrific things.
It's really scary to read what you wrote about the guy who killed his girlfriend--we're always a little comforted to read something like, "oh he was on crack" or whatever. I'm not on crack, that won't happen to me. But the idea that somebody "normal" had that within him is pretty hard to deal with.
Man, this is all I got for ya: :hug

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Post by Funkay » Thu Apr 24, 2008 3:02 pm

Man, this is all I got for ya :affection
You have no idea how much that helps! I've been spending a lot of time with a good guy friend of mine recently, mostly because he gives away hugs like they're going out of style! And Lord knows I need me some hugs! Not to mention he's quite the looker! ;-)

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Post by Gillian » Thu Apr 24, 2008 7:21 pm

I think the best thing you can do right now, Funkay, is to surround yourself with people who care, and just ... talk. It obviously won't change things, but it will help you process the pain and grief and allow you to get on with the healing process.

Remember -- don't try to make sense of things. That'll only drive you nuts. Just be patient with yourself and gently acknowledge whatever feelings come along. In time, things WILL get better and you'll be a stronger person for it.

I promise.

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Post by Funkay » Fri Apr 25, 2008 8:34 am

I stopped trying to make sense of life a long time ago, but sometimes it's hard not to think about why stuff happens. It isn't talking that helps so much as just crying it out. I have a hard time crying, so when I do I feel a million times better. I'm actually taking a personal day from work next week so I can deal with a few of these issues. Usually when I get this down or life just gets crazy, I go and visit my dad's grave and just cry for as long I need to. He's buried three hours away so it's more of pilgrimage to sort my thoughts out in a peaceful setting. This time I'm taking a friend because I don't want to do it by myself anymore. Hopefully after this trip I won't let my emotions pool in my chest until I explode like they have been for the past year or so.

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Post by Funkay » Fri Dec 12, 2008 10:57 am

Updates:

In July, the kid I knew that killed his girlfriend at work pleaded guilty and got life without parole.

Today is the formal sentencing of the guy that killed Katie (the artist from the original post). He got the death penalty. I didn't hear any of the gory details of her death until the trial this week and based on that, I agree with the decision. Until then I was fine with him getting life in prison. I do have an emotional investment in it, but it was a lot worse and more disturbing that I had originally thought. Very Manson family. Very sick.

The other case (the one I nearly decked a girl over), was settled a bit ago and the guy who pulled the trigger also got the death penalty and the accomplice got life.

Just in time for the year to be over. Hopefully next year will be better. If anything like this happens next year, you better believe I will actually be sitting on that beach in Dubai.

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Post by marilaine » Fri Dec 12, 2008 11:09 am

I'm sorry to hear you lost a close friend, Funkay. Our prayers are with you at this time. :hug
~M'L(C) :-(

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Post by Hilary the Touched » Fri Dec 12, 2008 12:19 pm

Wow.
Like you say, way to close out the year . . .
death sentence and no chance of parole?? Well, it sounds like you can put those guys out of your thoughts anyway . . . what sad, sad stories all around, Funkay. Here's to a cleaner, more positive 2009!

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