5.9: Move Forward

It feels nice to be writing again. I guess I didn’t realize how much I missed it.

And actually, I missed a lot of things.

Like smiling, or laughing – real, honest-to-God laughing.

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Working out in the gym every morning.

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Wanting to have sex with my wife.

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Sleeping through the night.

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Enjoying the little things. Being happy.

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And now I finally have some of that back.

I know I said I missed writing. And I did. I really did. But I think I’m kind of glad I stopped for a while. It would have been so painful to be able to go back and see just how miserable I was.

I almost can’t believe how bad things got. How much I was hurting everyone I love. I guess I didn’t realize it at the time… Or didn’t care. And I know that makes me sound like a total dick. Maybe I am one. Or was one. But I’m trying so hard not to be anymore.

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Mama was the one who did it. Everyone else tried and tried to convince me, but Mama… God, you should have seen her face when she was talking to me. You should have heard the things she said. I’ve always known she had problems when I was younger, and I knew the gist of what had happened to her when she was a kid. But I never realized how bad it was, or how much it still haunts her, even now. Almost fifty years later.

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I didn’t want that to be me.

So I decided not to let it.

But it sure as hell hasn’t been easy.

Quitting the drinking wasn’t so bad, I guess. I didn’t have any kind of withdrawal or anything. I don’t even think I was ever really addicted to it. Not physically. So putting down the bottle was the easy part.

Learning how to deal with the pain’s a hell of a lot harder.

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At first I was so embarrassed about seeing Dr. Neumann. I mean, it wasn’t my first time dealing with a therapist. I try not to think about what happened between me and Lettie all those years ago, but I can’t pretend it didn’t happen. But that felt so different. My wife and I were in it together. Helping each other.

This time I’m on my own, and that makes it so much worse.

It took a while to really get ‘into’ it, I guess. But once I did, it really helped. So much. Dr. Neumann… She’s a genius. I think I’m finally starting to see what she’s been trying to tell me these past few months.

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I spent all this time waiting and wondering when I’d feel whole again. When I’d finally get back that part of me that’s missing now, y’know? And then I started to realize that I never will. That was scary as hell. I couldn’t deal with it, and I handled that fear in the worst way imaginable.

But now I think I get it. It’s not about getting back what I’ve lost. Because it’s true – I never will. Lucas is gone. He’s never coming back. And for the rest of my life, there will always be a part of me that’s missing. I’ll never be the same again. None of us will be.

And that’s okay.

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I just need to move forward with who I am now and what I have left. And Dr. Neumann helped me realize that what I have left is pretty amazing.

I have my parents and my siblings – even Stefan, half a world away. He’s still there for me, any time I need to talk.

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I have my beautiful Lettie. And when we have bad days, we lift each other up now. I don’t make her do all the heavy lifting anymore.

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I have my sweet little niece and nephew, and a new niece on the way next month too. A beautiful new life to look forward to.

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I have my amazing grandkids. Jocelyne’s adorable little girls, adjusting so wonderfully to their new life here with us. And my poor little Zayne, soldiering on through the pain. I’m so proud of him. We all are.

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I’m proud of Gus too. Working on his law degree, getting married this summer… He’s growing up so fast. He’s a man now, and I’m so lucky to call him my son.

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And Jocelyne…

My life is so much better now that she’s back here with us. It really is. And I’m so happy she’s forgiven me for what a complete asshole I was all those years ago.

But I can’t lie. I still worry about her. She’s been trying so hard to be strong for everyone else, just like she always has… But she’s still fighting her own demons. I can feel it.

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Though I guess mine haven’t completely vanished either.

I still see it sometimes. I don’t think I can ever completely shake it. That thing I saw under the sheet… It will probably stay with me forever.

But you know what?

That thing was not my son.

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Physically, of course it was. I’m not an idiot. I know that used to be him.

But Lucas was so much more than the body on that table.

And I can still feel him sometimes, when I’m lying in bed at night. Not as often as I used to, but every once in a while, I swear to God, it’s like he’s there. But it feels more comforting now than it used to. Maybe it always was?

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I love Lucas. I will never stop loving him, and I will miss him every day, until the day I die.

But my life can’t stop just because he’s gone. I see that now. So I’m going to move forward, and I’m going to keep living.

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For Lucas. For my family.

And you know what?

For myself too.

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——————————

And, barring any unforeseen change in my plans, we bid goodbye to another heir 😦 This will be the last Tobi journal. He’ll still be around of course, like Mari. But we’ve heard from the man himself for the last time.

Goodbye, you sexy, loveable idiot. It’s been a wild ride ever since that night at summercamp when you met your future wife. Sorry for putting you through all this. I’m so glad you found peace, and I’ll miss you. ❤

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39 Responses to 5.9: Move Forward

  1. Senna says:

    For a second with one of those screenshots, I thought there were two Tobis, and that he somehow cloned himself.

    Then I realized that was a mirror.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Simslover163 says:

    That was a very touching final Tobi journal entry. I’m smiling as I read this. I’ll miss hearing from him. He’s a great guy, despite all the frenzy he went through. I’m so proud of him for overcoming his alcohol troubles and death of Lucas. Learning to move forward from problems like these is a BIG step.

    My favorite moments with Tobi were meeting Lettie at summer camp and of course, meeting his birth father along with Stefan.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. thegeekgamez says:

    Goodbye tobi; you beautiful, Kinda dumb, yet wonderful man.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. CitizenErased14 says:

    Oh this comment made me emotional. Thank you! :’) He has been a joy to write, both the good and bad moments. He definitely is very flawed and very human and I really love him for that. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Spottydog714 says:

    Can I just point out how happy it makes me that the therapist is a woman?

    And good bye, Tobi. This chapter is bitter sweet.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Jes2G says:

    Yay! Good work, Tobi. Stay the course, and keep living…you dumb, sexy idiot, you lol.

    Completely random Jess being way too observant question 😛 I don’t even expect an answer lol. Why do the Rosebrooks have both urns? Shouldn’t they let Mark have Hazel’s?

    Liked by 2 people

  7. alphabetagama8 says:

    *remembers you can only like a post once*
    Gosh dang it!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. maladi777 says:

    I will miss Tobi’s journal entries. He’s a great character. So loveable with his little imperfections. 😉
    Looking forward to what the next generation brings.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. aww goodbyr tobi and what am i going to read now that im all caught up lol

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I was gearing up to fuss at you! And then I saw your italicized note at the end. All this time I’d been lobbying for more chapters from Mari and you were going to have journal posts from three generations NOW when you wouldn’t a generation ago? Lol, but I’ve calmed down and am now just grateful we got a farewell post from Tobi. His perspective will be missed.

    On another note, my great-grandmother lived until just before my 20th birthday, so I know just how lucky the kids of Gen 5 are that Mari is still around.

    Liked by 1 person

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      Hahaha I just needed to give Tobi some closure after Luc’s death. 😛 Now he’s gracefully bowing out of the story like his mother did haha (though who knows? Maybe he’ll have a nice moment later like she did this gen??)

      And yes, they are very lucky to have her 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  11. audreyfld says:

    I loved this chapter! 🙂 Everyone is beginning to move forward except maybe Jocelyn. She is taking such tiny baby steps. Maybe Tobi can be the one that helps Jocelyn like his mother helped him since he was so depressed and managed to get through it. Poor Jocelyn needs to heal as well. I know we are moving on to the next generation but Infeel she needs some closure too. Can’t wait to see the teen years and what they bring and Clara’s new baby girl. Sad for three chapters a week but it is the holidays.

    Liked by 1 person

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      I’m so glad you enjoyed this one 🙂 And I think you’re so right — Joce is still stuck, and definitely needs some closure 😦 We do have a few chapters left before this arc is over, so hopefully she will find some!

      I’m glad you’re excited about the teen years! And yeah, sorry about the schedule change. 😦 Maybe eventually I can go back to 4 or 5, but it’ll be 3 for a while 😦

      Liked by 1 person

  12. kaffepigen says:

    I’m a little sad this is the last Tobi chapter. I love hearing from him 🙂 but it was a great end of an amazing era.
    I’m so glad that he has finally found some kind of peace. I hope we hear more about his progress through someone else.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. azzywoods says:

    Oh Tobi. This was a good place to leave him at, I think. I still think in terms of character, Mari may be my favourite, but he was great as well, and his flaws only served to humanise him.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. CitizenErased14 says:

    Thanks! They did come out quite attractive didn’t they? 😛 I am in love with all of them already! Haha and they definitely all resemble their parents so much — strong genes!

    The triplets are (from left to right) Alex, Charlie, and Tony 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  15. megiare says:

    I never seem to comment on the actual story itself, but I find it cute that after all these “years” Tobi and Collette haven’t decorated the room for them. Her pink stuff is still mingled in there! LOL

    Like

  16. SpurklyNinja says:

    *thunderous claps* Woo! Yay, Tobi! Keep on living your life. I’m super glad that he’s gotten through the worst of it and he’s enjoying it.

    “But Lucas was so much more than the body on that table.” I love this.

    And hmm… it feels like Lucas is right next to you, huh? Interesting… 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  17. lisabeesims says:

    And all is well that ends well with this generation.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. theceltygirly says:

    I love the end so much ❤ The last two pictures and his last words ❤
    Bye, Tobi! You are hopefully free from Citizen's torture, and free from my shame corner. Go, be free, child!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. skcaga6 says:

    Watching Tobi go through the pain of losing Lucas has been so real. I watched my grandparents go through it in 1994 when we lost my aunt. It was the only time I ever saw my grandfather cry. I still remember his words, much the same as ones spoken in an earlier post here. “Parents should never have to bury their children.” He missed her right up until he died 3 years later (yesterday was the 20th anniversary of Grandpa’s last breath). My mom has buried two children. I still see the pain on her face around their birthdays and death anniversaries. Angela’s been gone 43 years and Dani has been gone 37 years. It is a pain that never goes away for a parent. You have portrayed it very well with Tobi.

    Like

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      I’m so sorry for all the pain your family has experienced 😦 I appreciate you being comfortable enough to open up and share those personal stories with me.

      One of my best friends from high school’s brother passed away when he was 25 (that was only 9 years ago now). It was so devastating for her family. Her parents have never been the same since. I was thinking of them a lot when writing about this arc. I think losing a child must be the absolute worst pain anyone in the world could experience. 😦 This arc was so hard to write (and probably read, so I am sorry for that!)

      But I am a believer that even though the pain never leaves, you can find the strength to move forward and keep living and have a happy life. Maybe not as happy as it was before, but a life you can love and enjoy. Because isn’t that what our loved ones would want for us? 🙂 ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

    • CitizenErased14 says:

      Very off topic but since I know you’ve been looking at some of comments, I’m just letting you know if you see weird comments from me that seem to be addressed to no one (I just noticed that when looking at this comment!), there was insane drama with a former reader that really hurt me deeply so I deleted her posts from my blog (kind of as an emotional purge lol) but my replies to her stayed, for some reason :-/ haha

      Like

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