For Better or Worse, but Not the Worst

My husband’s rage and my daughter’s pain were too much for me to balance and finally, when she died, an iron curtain slammed down in my mind emblazoned with the two simple words:  NO MORE

by Linda Garramone

When my mind flashed those words, my heart and mind exploded, but I didn’t realize that by killing herself, my beautiful child had also, in a certain way, released me. Perhaps the divorce too, in the guise of more unbearable change, is really my path to transformation.

I need to focus on finding a lawyer, a prospect that slips and slides out of my conscience mind.   Some days when I feel like my old self before Olivia died, I call friends and get references, I interview lawyers on the phone in Palm Beach, have actually managed to make arrangements to go down and meet them in person in the hope that one will feel right, that there will be one attorney who will hear my story and not just look at my case as a splitting of too few assets, but who will take the measure of my enormous suffering and trauma even though the law does not.  I know this is their profession and their business, it is how they make their living, with retainer fees and hours billed, but I can’t imagine a process that is going to take the mesh of our private and corporate life and snap it clean and fair.  My mind balks at the myriad of complex details, the raddled strings that are entwined beneath the surface of this long marriage.  There is a boggling lifetime of accumulated objects and patterns of behavior as well as, to my naïve surprise, an eye-popping accumulation of debt.

When I said for better or for worse at my wedding almost twenty-eight years ago, I meant it, although I surely fulfilled the vow imperfectly.   Coping with a divorce on top of my daughter’s death is stupefying, unthinkable and unimaginable at the same time that I know it is ineluctable.  For better or for worse apparently did not include the worst of all.

Photo courtesy zimmytws/Shutterstock

Share Your Thoughts!



Linda Garramone writes a clear-eyed, brutal and agonizing tale of an irretrievably shattered life. She recounts, in a brisk yet rich with vividness and moments of extraordinary pathos, the loss of her twenty-two year old gifted daughter to suicide, the end of her marriage, and the confused and brittle being she now has become. Her lucid, beautiful writing, reflects the sensitive perception of a gifted artist. We look forward to reading her future stories.

Noella 07.10.2012

Linda Garramone's story is the clear-eyed, brutal and agonizing tale of an irretrievably shattered life that starts with the severing of the last few ties to the abusive man the writer married almost three decades before, centers on the annihilation of a wife/mother dedicated to her love for family and family life, the woman she was before the devastating loss of her beautiful 22 year-old daughter to suicide, and ends with the confused and brittle creature she has become. However, there is a spark in the darkness:"No More," said she. It is her call to a courageous determination to resurface. One cannot easily imagine the arduous road that is ahead, but there is a hint, here and there,(the vivid presence of the pretty blue cup in an elegant hotel room in Paris, or the sensuous and beautiful scene of mornings with her daughter) that her exquisite sensibility and awareness may be of secours.
Garramone's limpid style reinforces the inferno she recounts. One understands her revulsion at the minutia of daily living and is anxious and eager to read of ther overcoming the obstacles that clutter her path and of finding acceptance after the merciless tragedy that has befell her. I look forward to more reading of this interesting and remarkably good writer.

Such a beautifully written and heartbreaking account of the loss of a child and a shattered marriage. My heart goes out to the author.


I found Ms. Garramone's article to be riveting! Would love to read more from this talented writer. Deborah Pitts, Palm City, Florida.

Post new comment

Click to add a comment