kris munsch

Looking it in the eye isn't...

Looking it in the eye isn't exactly the easiest thing to do, admitting it on a public forum is even harder.  Yet, the day, the time, the moment has come.  I've watched it creep back into my life, like a fog it patiently waited offshore for the wind to change.  Slowly, silently, it drifted back cloaking me like a cold wet blanket.

For as long as I can remember, I've denied it.  Had I been asked yesterday, I would have told you no.  At times, the mask is much easier, because it comes and goes.  It's something I can run from, yet it lurks, patiently waiting to smother me.  The denial is what gives it power, the ability to invade from within.

To remove it, I bury it.  Projects, I'm good at them because I'm empowered from within to not face open space.  It's strength that comes from a source of unimaginable reserves when speaking the truth is the only way to remove it's source.  To stop and admit it, fills me with sadness in one breath because I ran.  To stop and admit it, fills me with joy because I finally can face it.

The death of a friend stopped me, I began to take inventory of my life, the timing, impeccable.  The jury was in, the evidence held me guilty, the sentence a breath away.  I no longer choose to close my eyes and deny it, to fight it, instead I will lay in it.  I want to understand it and become an expert in my own grief.

I struggle with depression.  It comes and goes like a fog, a cold wet blanket.  I shed it by pushing it to the side, not giving it the space it needs control me.  I've made a decision, to walk the walk.  I will no longer deny it, I've made a decision to face it and learn from it.

The statement alone gives me strength.   

 

Taking the time...

We take the time to vacation, have special dinners, paint houses. Have you ever taken the time to go grieve? I mean step away from this world, a society that's based on money equals success. If you've never done such a thing, I highly suggest the mental time. 

I had many memorable experiences while traveling the country in my time of exile, but a rainy night in Oregon is one I will never forget. Settling into my sleeping bag, the constant patter of rain on the metal roof. Watching the rain drops hit my windows and slowly making their way down down the mini rivers that formed. The time was priceless in my journey here, to this place within. 

If you've never taken the time to grieve, from experience, I recommend it.

Maybe worth sharing, maybe not...

Maybe worth sharing, maybe not...

Without a doubt, I'm a doer. Given the time, patience and tools, I will take on just about anything. I remember when the CNC machine arrived in a large crate at the high school I taught at in KC. Two large crates of parts. Step by step I assembled, connected the power, loaded the software and began to teach myself the "how too".

This isn't something I started later in life, I've been this way all my life. I can remember taking apart and reassembling things from little on. My grandmother always told me as I drove off on their riding lawn mower to keep it assembled. I always replied, "OK grandma" with a smile knowing well that I had to take the cover off that motor or tweak the belts.

I mention this today as I just spent two hours reading up on my old truck. 1 1/4" main cylinder, 1 3/8" wheel cylinder, basic fuel pump or vacuum assist, the list goes on and on. Prior to bringing this beauty to my home, I knew little or nothing about Chevy trucks. My first thought was to drop her off and say "fix it".

Then I began to ponder the opportunity at my feet. If I get a manual, read some forum's, be patient and learn, this will truly become MY truck. Yeah, I really want to get ole' Bess running and go for a cruise with my pups, but the ownership I will have because I took the time to look within and rebuild her will be far more enjoyable then to just "fix it".

I write about this today because I see myself in West 17th, now in this ole truck. West 17th is now a part of me and I will forever be a part of her, the truck is no different. I was a part of my son's life, he a part of mine. He taught me lessons, experiences that are now mine to carry forward. His life and the lives of my students live on in me, me in them.

If at the end of the day I've succeeded to squeeze my experiences out to share like wringing out a sponge, than tomorrow I awake a beginner. Ready to absorb what life has to teach me, it's life's breath. Without a doubt, heaven on earth.

Be safe and well friends, to breath is to live, spiritually. One with the earth, in all I do.

A few thoughts 8 years in...



1. I've learned to live from the heart.

2. Don't feel sorry for me, I don't.

3. The pain I feel when I grieve is real, it's physical.

4. I cradle the love and nurture the pain.

5. My weaknesses are my greatest strengths because I acknowledge them.

6. There are times I would rather die than live, the love is that deep.

7. I work to empower myself, it takes that much energy.

8. I see my son in everything I do, heaven on earth.

9. A short sock and a long sock daily, it's a choice, a reminder.

10. I'm at peace with it. The peace has allowed me to live within.

It has taken time for me to get here, to understand the journey. To understand what the journey even is. I went to bed last night and I honestly couldn't wait for the sun to rise. To be a beginner each and every time I open my eyes. A choice without a doubt.

Disarming Fear

Today, I'm going to go do something I didn't think I had the courage.  Something for years and years I didn't think twice, I just did.  Little did I know that for just over eight years I would struggle to do this one simple thing, fear has held me paralyzed in it's grips.

I talk about standing up.  I talk about facing things we dare not.  I talk about this and I talk about that, yet within something has had a grip on my heart.  The thought of it has brought me to instant lock down, "I can't". 

Well, today I must "walk the walk".  For me to continue, I must face a fear.  I must disarm it.  Take away it's power.  Take away it's grip.  Without a doubt I fear it, yet to write another word, to share another thought, I must disarm it.

My sons death tore open a wound that will never heal, that's reality.  To be told it will heal is simply a small bandage that will not cover.  That's reality.  To look at it any differently is simply false. To fear it, is making a decision to not understand it.

I choose to learn from it.  To walk the walk, to disarm it.  I respect it, but it will no longer control me.  

Thoughts at 8 years...

Thoughts...

Reflecting back on the past 8 years since my sons death, I wanted to share a few thoughts from the heart.

-I have entire blocks of time missing. I will be having a conversation with someone and they act as if I was there, I have no recollection. After sitting with the thought for a time, I begin to remember.

-I'm not the same Kris prior to Blake's death. Yeah, I can still build, create, etc. The inner self is different, not better or worse, just different. Understanding and accepting it has been difficult.

-When I see someone in crisis, the very sight drains my strength. I feel as though I'm transported back in time. I'm learning to honor that drain.

-I fear allowing people too close to me. The results of Blake's death and two divorces no doubt. Moose(my dog) has helped me break those barriers.

-When perspective changes on one thing, it changes on everything. That alone takes time to grasp, it's like learning to walk again, in someone else's body.

-I've always been a visionary type. The past eight years I had to trust in what I saw in my own life. When I did, good things began to happen.

-My second divorce was harder on me then my sons death. Though it was inevitable, the event took me down a path of chaos. It's where I realized just how strong I am. "I stared into the barrel of nothingness and found my bottom, from there I began to rebuild".

-Trusting in my own thoughts took time, that's why I began with the little things. Stripping away the external, depending on what I had within. What I discovered was big things are simply many little things. This applies to every aspect of my life.

I miss my son, yet in the same breath he's with me, heaven on earth.

Be safe and well friends, but more importantly, take a moment to simply reach out and give a friend a hug who's struggling. You don't have to say a word, just listen, with the heart.

Too teach...

Too teach from the heart, not a book, a notepad filled with scribble, or a series of prepared slides.  No, it's not perfect, yet in every sense it fits me like a fitted glove.  Risk, nothing we do in life is without if we make a decision to step onto the balcony and say it, from the soul.

My grief, I'm learning day by day is something that I only understand on the surface, I loved him deeply.  My despair, only because the path that had become so well planned was only a part of a far gone life.

The turning point, when I began to seek my own answers.  Not from a text, a word, but from within.  I had the answers the entire time.  Tucked, only to be unfolded when I pulled them from the inner seams of within.

To speak, not for what you want to hear, but for what I truly had to say.  Not easy, as it took a universe to temper the insecurity driven deep.  Yet I made a decision that to live within my reality, I had to hear my reality.  The toughest, yet the wisest choice I've ever made.

Humbled, by the good things, I yet to feel I deserve.  With a smile, accepted, not without a tear.  It's good to be here, home, it's not a place, it's the peace within.  Too teach from the heart, is to learn from the world.  

Be safe and well, but more importantly, be willing to teach others from the heart who you are within.  Too teach it, you begin to understand it.  To understand it, peace.  

The NFL winners and losers...

Yesterday while painting, I was listening to the post game show in the radio after the Chiefs lost.  While listening to the reporters interviewing the players, there was something very distinctive about what was coming over the radio.

When the reporter made his way into the winners locker room, his voice was upbeat, loud and it sounded as though the future was wide open.  Yet the same reporter goes into the losers locker room minutes later and his voice is down, subdued and the future was bleak.

After experiencing tragedy in my own life, the differences were unmistakable.  I had to pause for a moment to think about this, as it happened often in my own life after Blake's death.  Here I was, a battle brewing within of the old me and the new me, yet the voices I heard in conversation were already telling me I was the loser.

Society plays a bigger role then we give credit.  We change within, but without a doubt, those on the outside have a role as well.  It even happens in football locker rooms and it's just a game.  

The NFL winners and losers...

Yesterday while painting, I was listening to the post game show in the radio after the Chiefs lost.  While listening to the reporters interviewing the players, there was something very distinctive about what was coming over the radio.

When the reporter made his way into the winners locker room, his voice was upbeat, loud and it sounded as though the future was wide open.  Yet the same reporter goes into the losers locker room minutes later and his voice is down, subdued and the future was bleak.

After experiencing tragedy in my own life, the differences were unmistakable.  I had to pause for a moment to think about this, as it happened often in my own life after Blake's death.  Here I was, a battle brewing within of the old me and the new me, yet the voices I heard in conversation were already telling me I was the loser.

Society plays a bigger role then we give credit.  We change within, but without a doubt, those on the outside have a role as well.  It even happens in football locker rooms and it's just a game.  

An Interview I did...

This past year, I've done a couple local interviews that focused on the renovation work I'm doing on a historic home in my hometown.  On many occasions, I've shared that this isn't just a house I'm bringing back to life, it's a parrallel of my life.  A beautiful home that ended up empty for years and years because of tragedy, only to be brought back to life, one nail, one wall, one heartbeat at a time.

I invited Mike and Jeff back to do a segment about the holidays and how difficult it can be for someone who's endured death, divorce, etc.  I also wanted to talk about what those who support someone in crisis could do to help.  It's not from a book, but my words are from the heart.

http://www.hayspost.com/2013/11/18/kris-munsch-dealing-with-the-loss-of-...

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