Monthly Archives: April 2012

My Blog Is One Year Old

I woke up this morning thinking about this post…hell, I was thinking about it when I went to bed last night…sad but true…

The one year anniversary of a blog seems like a big deal to me…Just over 200 posts, nearly 5000 views, and 66 subscribers later, I’m still amazed that people read the stuff that lives in my head…especially since I’m not passing out advice about life, love, or children…what blows me away even more is that there are people who go to their browser, type in the url for my blog, and read my thoughts – on purpose…?! And damn I wish I knew who it is…or maybe I’d rather not know…hmmmm…

I started this blog because I had so much in my head that I couldn’t seem to get out…I thought I was going to explode…I’ve always done better when I talk it all out…for whatever crazy reason, I thought, “Hey, let’s do it in a completely public forum!”

But, I’ve digressed (as usual)…this morning I thought I knew the direction of this post…and then real life intervened…Sean is sick…we spent three hours in immediate care…because this mother of the year still hasn’t found the boys a new pediatrician since we moved six months ago…his eyes were oozing, his nose was oozing, he was slobbery, and he was a little furnace – who promptly fell asleep in my arms…

I felt people glancing at us…feeling sorry for one or both of us, I think (probably the adorable baby in my arms)…the image I presented feels stereotypical, I think…single, harried, stressed out mom with sick child, all alone, no help, blah blah blah…and I thought about how I would have reacted a year ago to a day like today…

I think it would have made me sad…I’m sure I would have stressed out about Sean being sick, me missing work, taking care of a sick child and a hyper, healthy child – you name it…

A lot can change in a year…

No need to feel sorry for myself…I know I can handle days like this – I do it all the time…

Sometimes I don’t think I’ve changed…only that I’ve learned how to fake it…or that I’ve come to accept my life instead of railing against it…so I guess it’s a question better answered by the people who’ve read my crazy thoughts…especially for the people (brave souls that you are) who have read from the beginning…

Am I different? Have I changed in the past year?

The Potty Chronicles – Gettin’ There

We have had a few successes recently…I say “we” like I’ve done something…ha!

Sean can and will use the potty at daycare…woohoo!

Sean can and will cry everytime I take his Pull-ups off at home so he can easily use the bathroom…

He doesn’t have the dexterity yet to pull his pants down and then back up, but he knows when he’s got to go…at home, though, he’s perfectly happy to use the diaper or Pull-up…underwear or bare-butt – that makes him nervous…

Sometimes I take pity on him and just let it be for the day…there’s nothing more pathetic than a toddler who’s afraid to get off the potty…

I think he only tolerates his teachers and me because he knows he’s getting some candy…I hope the candy as bribery thing doesn’t last into adulthood…

A Different Kind of Grief

I woke up this morning just as upset as I felt when I went to bed last night…I was barely functional…definitely not at my best…

I sobbed in the shower just so the boys wouldn’t have to be subjected to it…

And it finally dawned on me…I’m grieving…sometime between yesterday afternoon and this morning I made the decision that I wasn’t going to keep forcing The Ex to participate in the boys’ lives…if he chooses to, wonderful – I’ll never turn him away…but I’m not going to do it for him…

By making that decision, I know that I am effectively cutting the time he spends with the boys to almost nothing…I know that it’s not me doing it – this is about him and his choices…but it doesn’t make me feel any better…

They are sweet little boys who love both of us…they don’t understand why life is so different – Aidan says he wishes The Ex and I would get married again…they aren’t going to understand this…it’s going to hurt – and that’s where my grief comes from…am I ultimately doing what’s best for them? I think so…but knowing that they will feel pain because of it rips me apart…

I get the feeling that Aidan senses I’m the adult in the situation…and I worry that a day will come when he blames me – because the grown up in the room should know better (and do better)…

Clearly, The Ex is an adolescent who really thinks I invite him along because I want to be with him (I think he thinks he stands a chance with me…really?!)…and he spends the whole time focused on me, not the boys – I won’t subject us to that anymore…they deserve his attention, and when (if) he decides he wants to see them, he knows where to find them…

It doesn’t make my heart hurt any less…it doesn’t make me any less angry…it doesn’t make me grieve any less for two beautiful little boys who deserve so much more…

The Flipside of Peace and Contentment

Normally I would never post to the same blog twice in the same day…but I had such a beautiful start to my day…and it deserved its own post

I should have stayed on the beach…my day went downhill the moment I left…at first it was nothing but minor aggravations – lunch plans I decided to change…wishy-washy potential buyers of Bubba who kept backing out (yeah, I’m selling Bubba)…and then there was tonight with The Ex…

I knew I hit a breaking point when I cried through both of the books I read to the boys at bedtime…I couldn’t even hide it…Aidan didn’t say anything – that’s not his style…he’ll say something in a few days…

Thanks to some tough love from This Man, I had to face some truths…some of which he doesn’t even know I realized…the biggest? I have spent every moment of the past 13 years trying to make The Ex something he’s not…I tried to make him work…I tried to make him a partner in our marriage…and now I’m trying to make him a good father…

I am so afraid of the boys not having a relationship with The Ex that I include him in family activities, even though I really don’t want to…and he perceives (incorrectly) that I want him around – and I’m always disappointed because he spends the entire time we’re together focused on me, not on the boys…

It’s torture to have him around, but I tell myself it’s for the boys, and I’ll just suffer through…tonight, I guess I felt like I had suffered enough…I started crying and I couldn’t stop…

I feel like a failure…I can’t get The Ex to focus on the boys…I can’t get him to stop flirting with me, talking about his girlfriend, or telling me that he still loves me (God, make it stop!)…

I tell myself I’m doing this for the boys…because they need their father…because they’re better off with both of us…

The reality, though? I don’t want to be wrong – about everything…even though I have been…I was the idiot who married him…and although I wouldn’t have had the boys without The Ex, I saddled them with him as their father…I’ve already done it all wrong…and my biggest fear is that one day they’ll look at me and blame me because they don’t have a relationship with him…

Intellectually I know that could happen anyway…I know that I will endure all sorts of blame and accusations – that’s what kids do, right? At least until they figure it out for themselves…

But I don’t want it to be true…I don’t want them to not have a father because of me…I’m afraid of giving up on The Ex for the wrong reasons…it would be very easy for me to stop trying so hard to force The Ex to be a dad, but I’m afraid that my real reasons would have nothing to do with the boys and everything to do with how I feel – and isn’t that wrong? It feels wrong…

And if I let him slip out of their lives, who do I replace him with? Who else can be a father-figure to them? Yes, single parents have been doing this succesfully for a long time, but even I have to admit that two decent parental figures are better than one frazzled, frustrated, worn-out parent…they deserve better, and I don’t have better to offer them…so I just keep pretending The Ex is what they need…

I’ve been so wrong about so much…and this is the one thing I wish I could get right…

For A Moment – Peace and Contentment

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This was the start of my day…jealous? You should be…I live here…and yes, it really does look like that at the beach…

I’ve worked hard lately, and I needed a break…so I took today off…and went to the beach…

I drove up, saw the water, and started giggling – like a child…with pure delight…

I found my spot, got my chair ready, sprayed on sunscreen, and just smiled…

I walked up and down the beach, letting my toes get wet…red flags were flying so there was NO way I was getting in the water…I splashed as I walked…I spread my arms wide so I could feel the wind…I looked for shells…I watched the birds…

Between walks on the beach, I sat in my chair, reading my book and watching the water…

I don’t know if it was the sound of the waves…I don’t know if it was the beauty of the water…I don’t know if it was the peacefulness of the moment…but for a few brief hours, I was incapable of getting lost in my head…I was purely in the moment, enjoying every second of it…my head would not hold on to anything more than fleeting thoughts…

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Pure bliss…I will forever be grateful for this moment in my day…

I Want, Part 2

Sometimes when I get something off my chest, I immediately feel better…ok, so sometimes I have to sleep on it, and then I feel better…

Yesterday wasn’t a horrible day, but talking about what was on my mind didn’t relieve any of the tension…today, I’ve felt lonely…loneliness is one of the worst feelings – and I’d like to think I’ve felt enough of crappy things in the past year to know…

A couple of weeks ago, I thought about what I wanted in life…and made a list…what I want right now, in this moment, is a little different…

I want someone to look at me with love in their eyes…

I want to hold hands…

I want someone who treats me gently – when I need it…

I want someone who wipes away the tears – and reminds me that it’s ok to cry…

I want my feelings to be considered…

I want to share my burdens…

I want to belong somewhere…with someone…

I want shared looks…

I want shared laughs…

I want intimate smiles…

I want what I can’t have right now…and it’s not even a matter of making it happen…

It’s the loneliness of my own life getting to me…it’s a fleeting feeling, I know that…being alone is not the worst thing in the world…of all the things I’ve experienced in the last year, this one is the hardest – not because it’s horrible…but because there’s no fixing it…I don’t want a random warm body just to fill the space, to fill the loneliness…

I can’t imagine that I’m the only single parent, hell, the only single person to feel like this…I wish I knew how other people handle it…I wish I knew how to cope better when it does start to get to me…most of the time, I just bury it down deep, because I try not to focus on things I don’t have control over…every once in a while, it rears it’s ugly head, and I’m not sure what to do about it…nothing I guess, except to write about it, and hope that the weight lifts…

Sometimes You Just Know

I’ve been in my head today…not in a bad, mopey way…I’m always trying to figure things out…decide if I’m looking at issues from the right perspective…

I can’t fix my life financially…I can’t fix The Ex…I can’t fix so many things…I can only deal with me and how I think and feel…that probably sounds pretty simplistic, but for someone with control issues, that’s a major revelation…

Lately, my mind has been on This Man – a lot…I can always tell when I’ve had too much time away from him, because thoughts of him can’t be put to the side easily…

When we first reconnected after so many years, it was comfortable…it was the best part of who we were as kids…we had both matured…we didn’t need to prove anything to each other, so the cockiness of our youth took a back seat…it didn’t take long for me to fall…and fall hard…he spent more time reassuring me that it was ok to feel the way I did than anything else…

For weeks, we talked, texted, emailed…it was wonderful…it was heady stuff…for the first time in so long, I felt like a teenager…and like a greedy child, I didn’t want that to end…but this is the real world, and the real world has a way of intervening…

I think it works in our favor that This Man and I came together again during a moment in time when he had the ability to focus on me…because once his life turned a little, that changed…

I didn’t handle it well, at first…I emoted…I freaked out…I was so unsure of myself and of his feelings for me…I had no confidence that without constant contact he wouldn’t forget all about me, change his mind, run screaming in the other direction…

I’ve settled down…waaaaay down…he made the statement several weeks ago that he just wants me to be happy and if that meant being with someone else, he wouldn’t like it, but he’d accept it…I tried to say the same thing, but I choked a little on it…I want him to be happy, too – of course! But I just hope it’s with me…I had to explain to him that this isn’t about being with just anyone, with a warm body that might buy me dinner every once in a while…I’d like to think that if I went out looking for that, I could find it – but that could just be a little ego talking…this about something much deeper, purer, and (possibly) simpler…

Now I’m at a point where I’m dissecting everything…and if I told him, he’d probably roll his eyes, and say, “Oh brother…” I do know him pretty well…

The feelings came easily…once I accepted them…my paranoid side wonders if it was too easy…I’m nervous about anything that seems too easy…but what’s easy about being three hours apart, talking maybe three times a week, and only seeing each other once a month (if I’m lucky)?

My instinct tells me that if we ever get to just be that good things will happen…and then I scare myself because what if my instinct is wrong?  Have you ever just known something, deep down in your gut, unquestioningly, so that it becomes simple fact?  That’s what this is…it’s not a feeling that everything will be perfect or that it will always be easy…it’s knowing that no matter what happens, it can (and hopefully will) work out…

This Man’s life is in a little bit of limbo right now…and I get it…this time last year, I was in a similar position…so I’ve backed off…I’ve let him be…I’ve waited for him to have calm moments…I’ve accepted what I can have of him, from him, and tried not to ask for more…not because I think I don’t deserve more…but because I really do believe that if we can get to that point, it will fall into place like it’s supposed to…as long as I respect the weirdness of his life right now…

And while I try not to care or think too much about what other people think of me, my life, This Man, whatever, I know that without my gut telling me what I know in my heart to be true, it probably looks from the outside like I give more or care more or feel more…but I guess that’s why it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks…it only matters what we think…

So I’m not just accepting my lot in life – in my own way, I’m working towards a better, happier future…and I’m not settling for something less than what I deserve (been there, done that)…I’m showing patience I didn’t know I possessed…I’m willing to wait for the right moment in time…I believe that something excellent can come of this, whatever this is…

 

Feeling Overly Emotional

The past few days have been insane…in some really great ways and in some really crappy ways…

I worked hard all week and ended Friday with a bang…it’s gratifying to have what I do appreciated…I ended an extremely long work-day with something I never do…I just chilled out with people not my children…in the arm-twisting process that Cool Chick went through to get me to agree, I ended up admitting to people that my life is mostly work and home…I don’t like to talk about that outside of family because it’s depressing…and although I have a very public blog, I really am a private person (yes, I get the irony of that, too)…

I spent way too much time around The Ex this week…waaaaaaaaay too much time…Thursday night we fought, because I finally decided to lay it all out for him about the boys…he immediately became defensive and we argued…Friday night he was way too emotional for my taste…he says he misses me, loves me, blah blah blah…what he misses is the life he had…

He even had the audacity to blame me for his lack of relationship with the boys…because I’m the one who wanted a divorce…are you kidding me, dude? Really?!

I came very close to considering turning my blog into an anonymous blog and not allowing anyone who knows me to read it – or at least not to know it’s me…I’m not going to because I’m not ashamed of anything I say here and I don’t really have anything in this blog that I wouldn’t want someone to read…but I would prefer that before anyone forms an opinion about my blog that they actually read the damn thing first…

All of this has me on the cusp of some emotional breakdown…I’m not there, but I can feel it simmering beneath the surface…one more thing, and I’ll crack…I really don’t want to crack…

Oh Crap, The Versatile Blogger Award – Me??

I was shocked when I logged on tonight and saw that I had been nominated for a blogging award…how cool is that?!  I had that Sally Fields moment of, “You like me…you really like me!”

It always surprises me that people read my ramblings – and like it…so thanks to Victoria otherwise known as Vicki…the Northern Chicky for giving me this one!

I’m supposed to nominate 15 blogs…unfortunately, I don’t subscribe to that many yet – so I’m going to cheat and nominate my top five:

Twisted Domestic Goddess – if we knew each other in real life, I think we’d be inseparable

The Man of the Minivan – he doesn’t blog often – he is a dad of three (two of which are twins) so I’m not sure when he sleeps – but when he does, I laugh, I nod my head, and sometimes I see things differently…

MyJourneyMyRules – sometimes I think we were separated at birth – we think alike, we have gone through similar situations, and we self-sabotage ourselves the same way…

The Year of Wonderful Weekends – she inspires me AND sent me the coolest postcard from New Zealand…yes, my love can be bought…

JeanDayFriday – because she cracks me up!

Ok, so the next part is a list of 7 things about me (oh Lord):

  1. I talk to myself – even when I’m not alone.
  2. I like to take road trips and long drives for no reason – just so I can listen to the radio.
  3. I like to watch Spongebob as much as Aidan and Sean do.
  4. I think it’s sort of cute that Aidan knows the words to Katy Perry songs.
  5. One day, I want to travel to Ireland.
  6. I don’t know how to swim or ride a bike.
  7. I eat an avocado in some form almost everyday.

So there you have it…apparently, I’m a versatile blogger…

The Benjamin Boys Say The Darnedest Things

Aidan: “What’s a pussy?”

Me: (Gulp) “Ummmm…”

Aidan: “Is it a cat?”

Me: “Yep, that’s exactly it!”

Oh holy hell, that was close…

*****

Sean: “Aidan is my best friend…Caleb is my best friend…Joshua is my best friend…”

Me: “So you like them?”

Sean: “Nope.”

Me: “But they’re your best friends?”

Sean: “Yeah!”

I’m not sure which part he doesn’t understand – “best friend” or “like.”

*****

Me: “What would you boys like for dinner?”

Aidan: “Whatever you’re cooking, Mom!”

What have you done with Aidan? And who is this kid? I like him, but for the record, I should probably know where my oldest child is located…

*****

Aidan: “I want to see that movie! Just the two of us, Mom!”

Some pirate movie coming out in a couple of weeks…

Me: “We’ll have to see…movies are expensive. I might not be able to afford it.”

Aidan: “Well, you shouldn’t buy anything until you’ve saved up enough!”

Me: “You mean like food for you and Sean?”

Aidan: “Well, just buy everything at the Dollar Tree instead. That way you’ll save lots of money!”

I wish I could take him to the movies…I really do…

*****

All of the above conversations occurred in the forty-five minutes it took me to pick everyone up, get them home, and get dinner started.

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They really are best friends…

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