Category Archives: Joy

Is This Where I Pay To Play?

I will soon be in a Dodge Journey (a freaking awesome rental), speeding down the road, headed to Mississippi…I have promised not to throw the boys from the car…I’ll visit with my mom, we’ll go to lunch, and then I will speed away, tires squealing, rubber burning, to get to BBF and This Man…

I have looked forward to this weekend and the following week for three weeks…actually, I’ve looked forward to the fantasy of this coming week for months…

Being the person I am, I mentally mapped out all that I needed to do today to get ready for tomorrow…what’s that expression about the best laid plans? Sometimes I’m not sure why I bother planning anything…

Here’s how this day was supposed to go: Get out of work at 4:30, pick up the rental no later than 5:30, get home before 6, cook dinner, get the boys bathed and in bed, workout, shower, pack, and sleep (maybe…I am a little excited…).

Here’s how it actually went: Got out of work at 5:15 (because the last event of the day was wildly popular!); got to Enterprise at 5:30 (and waited for a car until 6:30); went back to the office where I left my car because I forgot my phone charger (sooooo not an option); on the road home around 7; got a text from The Ex who apparently was tired of watching the boys and couldn’t manage to feed them dinner (WTF, dude?!); got home, fixed dinner, bathed the boys, bed by 8; began packing; searched for 30 minutes for one of Sean’s shoes (never found it); realized at 9:15 that I hadn’t eaten dinner and my knee hurts (screw the workout)…

I am so excited about my girls’ night out tomorrow and my evening with This Man on Sunday…I am equally excited about my week off from the mom thing…everyone says I’ll miss them…and not to sound like the worst Mom ever, but I don’t think so…this week has been rough on a lot of levels…temper tantrums everyday – Thursday morning I was reduced to tears (not that I’ll ever let Aidan know he got to me like that)…it’s been ages since I had time away from my children that wasn’t work-related and </em knew the boys were with someone I trust completely (sorry, my faith in The Ex is somewhat reduced)…

This is pretty typical of my life…work hard every moment to get to a few seconds of good…the good things in my life have never been easy…I envy the people who have that kind of good fortune…but at least I'll appreciate every single second of my time…after everything I've been through in the past few hours, days, weeks, and months, I am appreciative of the much-needed break I'm about to receive…but don't get in my way, I may knock your ass down on my way out the door!

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My Idea of Bliss?

My idea of bliss changes from moment to moment…at this very moment, sitting on my couch, drinking chai tea, eating a York peppermint pattie, and recovering from my little adventure earlier is exactly what I need…

Nothing much has been going on lately…getting serious about losing weight, fighting with The Ex, and living life…today was….interesting…

It rained all day…the rain woke me up this morning and lulled me to sleep this afternoon…and it kept us inside, because the last thing I wanted to do was cart small children in and out of the rain from store to store…but by this evening, we were all done being in the house…

We went to dinner and were on our way to roam the bookstore when I got a flat tire…yep, a flat tire, at night, in the rain, with two small children…yay…

Clearly we survived the ordeal…Mom #2 came and sat with us while we waited for the guy to come and change my tire…yeah, yeah, yeah, I should know how to do it…I’ll put that on my list…thank God she came…the boys did ok, but they were hyper…and as always, I was tired…

So bliss right now means sitting still, relaxing, doing what I want to do…oh yeah, and I’m finally dry and warm again, that helps…

In exactly two weeks, bliss changes, because 14 days from now, the boys will be with my mom and The Step for an entire week…7 whole days!! The best part, Saturday night I’ll be with BBF drinking margaritas, and Sunday, I’ll be with This Man…oh yeah, and I’m taking a couple days off of work that week so I can enjoy my house with no children…ahhh, bliss

Those Darn Benjamin Boys

It’s been a while, but those darn Benjamin boys are at it again…

Sean: “Anan, we go get Anan?”

Me: “Yes, Sean, we’re going to get Aidan.”

Sean: “And then we go house?”

Me: “Yes, baby, then we’ll go home.”

Sean: “Yay!”

*****

Me: “So what did you do today at school?”

Aidan: “Nothing.”

Me: “So you just sat there all day and stared at one another?”

Aidan: “Yep.”

And he says it with a straight face!

*****

Sean: “Mommy, I need kisses!”

Aidan: “Mommy, I need kisses, too?”

Sean: “Me, me, me!”

Aidan: “No fair! Me, me, me!”

This would be at bedtime.  They fight over who gets hugs and kisses before I leave the room.  Wow…I’m pretty frickin’ lucky…

*****

Aidan and I have been working on his behavior.  We have a behavior chart that earns him money (not much, I’m BROKE), but it seems to be working (knock on wood, God I hope I haven’t jinxed myself!)…Sean is becoming ornery…everything is “his” which is typical at his age…but since everything is also Aidan’s, it can get complicated…and loud…very loud…

I sure do love those darn Benjamin boys…

Passion, Love, and Changing Priorities

I love what I do for a living…I tend to feel silly admitting that because it’s not something people say much…I’m not just grateful to be employed (even though I’m damn grateful for that)…I don’t just like my co-workers…it’s not just a good organization (and it is definitely that)…I genuinely love what I do…

I never understood what finding your passion meant until March 2010…on paper I’m called a Communications Director…technically it means I do public relations, marketing, advertising, blah blah blah…in actuality it means I talk for a living…I am constantly finding new ways to communicate information so people will pay attention, take action, care about what I’m telling them…and I. Love. It.

And while there are both good and bad days in any job, everyday I am disgustingly happy to have the job that I do, and I am constantly looking for ways to improve and do more…ok, so saying all of that really does have a purpose…

In the past year or so, maybe a little longer, I have thought a lot about volunteering, giving back to my community…my concerns are always the time issue…do I have time to go somewhere and do something, especially with extremely limited access to after hours childcare? I also shy away from things that require a lot of interaction with crowds…I am capable of doing things that require that, but only once I’m comfortable and feel knowledgeable…but it’s been on my mind a lot…

I need to do something that makes me focus on something other than me…it’s easy for me to forget that there are people out in the world who have it so much worse than I do…selfishly, I also want to do more of what I love, because I love it, because it can make a difference, irrespective of pay…

I walked right into an amazing opportunity today…while sitting through a presentation about the local Guardian Ad Litem program, a two minute PSA video had me close to tears…I don’t cry in front of people I don’t know (hell, I barely cry in front of people I do know…)…but the idea of working with children, even for a worthy cause, didn’t excite me…so, during a momentary break, I asked something that may change my life forever…I asked about other opportunities to help…I described what I do for a living, my passion for it…

Have you ever seen a priceless opportunity right in front of you and known you can’t let it pass by, no matter what, no matter how scary? Yeah, me too…the response I received to my inquiry was that they may have the perfect thing for me…Chair of Public Relations for two counties…working with a Vice President for the non-profit…wait, what? Ummm, are you sure??

Part of me thinks they aren’t really serious, that someone with more experience than I have will step up and do the job “right.” Part of me thinks I’ll wake up tomorrow and this will have been a dream…but every fiber of my being hopes that this is really real, that I can do something, even in a small way, that helps this organization meet their ultimate goal – helping children.

Doing what I love, what I’m passionate about, for someone other than myself, to make a difference in the world, to be a part of something bigger…yeah, I think I can handle that…

A Little Bit of Balance

I have been in an amazingly wonderful mood all day…and five minutes before I sat down to write this, Aidan had me so angry that my head actually throbbed at the temples…I laid down the law, won the battle, and then took several deep breaths…I didn’t want to lose the good feeling any sooner than I had to…

And I expect the way I feel today to fade…unfortunately…

I had a trifecta of what I needed this weekend…time with my family in MS…the comfort of a reliable vehicle…and an hour with BBFF (which wasn’t enough time, but I was grateful for it)…

My YY came to visit this weekend…we rented a car and drove to MS to see my mom and The Step…we sped down the highway, talking and laughing…the boys and I were so excited to finally be heading toward MS – for the first time in months and months…

Aidan tore out of the car before I got it in park and ran to his Grandma…screaming for her…Sean laughed and laughed…they walked in the house and immediately started playing and asking for surprises from my mom (she’s trained them well)…

I found myself playing on the floor with Sean…laughing and rough-housing with both boys throughout the day…feeling genuinely happy…

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See? That’s the first picture taken of the three of us in a long time…and it’s my new favorite…

Driving to visit BBFF (who is recovering from surgery), I was a bundle of nerves…but as usual, the moment I saw him, I was relaxed and centered…I felt normal for the first time in a while…oh, maybe a month or so…we talked, I tried to fuss over him (he wouldn’t let me), and I left smiling and feeling at peace with the world…

I know the good feelings will fade as reality sets back in…I still drive Bubba (who I hate irrationally), I can’t get to MS for a few reasons, and it could be at least another month before I see BBFF again…but I’m going to savor this feeling of peace and balance for as long as I can…hopefully, I can be productive and make good use of how I’m feeling…before it slips away.

A Good Christmas

I didn’t know what to expect today…another first has come and gone, and there were enough perfect moments that it’s almost impossible to focus on anything negative…now that’s a good day…

I barely slept last night…could it be because I was anticipating Christmas? Or because I was sleeping on the couch (I always give my mom and The Step my bed when they visit)? Or because it was yet another first and I had to deal with it? Probably all three…

My mom was up at 6:30 this morning starting the turkey…I think Aidan was up about 30 seconds later…as excited as he was to see his presents from Santa, he still managed to show patience most adults don’t have and let everyone wake up first…

Opening presents, eating candy, taking pictures – our Christmas was probably pretty typical for most people…my mom and I cooked Christmas dinner together which was nice…the fact that we both made it work in my small kitchen was the Christmas miracle, I think…the food was delicious…that woman knows how to bake a freaking turkey…if my dad had a grave, he’d be rolling in it with laughter, because he and I were the ones to suffer through her experiments 20 years ago when she didn’t have a clue how to boil water..

I was surprised (and a little sad) that the boys didn’t ask about The Ex…I’m hoping it was because of the excitement of the day…my fear is that they’re getting used to him not being around as much…I didn’t exclude him, but he and the ‘rents don’t see eye-to-eye on much, so he chose to see the boys tomorrow…

I spent a lot of time last night thinking about how much life has changed in the past year…and I keep wondering how much more it will change in the next year, but that’s a post for another day…

This Christmas, with it’s familiarities and differences from years past, was a good day…and really, that’s all that matters right now…

A small gift I received this year hit me like a ton of bricks and, to me, epitomizes this new life we have:

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I Am Loved

It hit me like a ton of bricks today…I am loved…deeply and thoroughly…by many people…and the love that I receive and give outweighs the love I don’t receive from others…makes it completely irrelevant, actually…

Clearly my mom loves me…I am a 32 year old grown woman with two children, and my mother still loses sleep at night worrying about me…she gives me her time, her energy, and (unfortunately when I need it) her money…as a mom, I know that overwhelming love you have for your children…and when I think of that feeling I have for my boys and apply it to how my mother feels about me, I’m overwhelmed…

My YY loves me…she’s in my corner, righteously indignant on my behalf when I need it, backing me when I look for it, and supporting me in so many ways…all through text message…she’s always been more like a sister than an aunt…the things I couldn’t tell my mom (because she would have killed me), I could always tell YY…

If I had any doubt about the love some of my friends have for me, it is now gone…

Last night was one of those rare moments where friends from different segments of my life came together…

Mom #2 and Big Brother earned those names because that is how I see them and what they have become to me…BBFF is my best friend and perhaps something much, much, much more…last night, they met…and because of their personalities, all I had to do was make the introductions and sit back…

The joke was that I was “bringing a boy home” and so they had to find out if he was worthy…Mom #2 and Big Brother threatened to ask every stereotypical question…what are your intentions? Where do you see yourself in 10 years? Do you have a record? And knowing BBFF, he was going to be willing to play along…

Sometimes it sucks being right…in a loving way, they set out to mortify me…and it worked…a few times, I just wanted to crawl under the table…please, please don’t ask him that was a constant thought all night…

By the end of the night, BBFF had their seal of approval…”Michaela, he has a good job, he’s very smart, and he’s good-looking!” That was from Mom#2…and as she pointed out, the complete opposite of The Ex…Big Brother and BBFF were already planning a group outing as we were leaving…I’d say they hit it off (mostly for my benefit)…

If they didn’t love me as a friend, they never would have cared…they never would have paid as much attention…they never would have tried so hard…I love them for it…the force of their love hit me hard today…just like the force of BBFF’s love hit me…

I have no idea if the feelings BBFF and I have for one another are long-lasting…I have no idea what the future holds…and yes, I wish I did know, but what matters is here and now…and for a very brief time, I was enveloped in actual love…not the fake love that people use to get in bed with someone…not the pretty words people say to convince themselves and others of what they feel…real, genuine love…a lot of it is simply a deep friendship…some of it is much more…

I don’t know if I was ever really cared about by a man the way that BBFF cares about me…I don’t remember ever feeling safe and secure with The Ex…I don’t ever remember someone sitting and listening to me talk about what’s important to me with the full force of their attention…I don’t remember ever being so interested in learning as much about someone or wanting them to know as much about me – the good, bad, and ugly…I don’t remember a simple hug feeling so good…

Some things you have to figure out, think about, worry about, chew on, and then decide…some things you just know…I know I am loved…

Whirlwind

This weekend has officially been a blur…and I. Loved. IT!

I saw my friend, Music Man, Friday night…and didn’t get home until 1:00am. That really was a long day, because I woke up at 5:00am Friday morning…but totally worth it…

Saturday morning I got a few things done – errands and stuff…and then, I took a nap…because I wanted to…because I could…because I was damn tired from the night before…I think I might be too old for staying up late…ha!

Saturday night, I saw Trace Adkins in concert, ate gator-on-a-stick, devoured deep-fried brownies, and split a “bucket o’ fries” with someone…It. Was. AWESOME!!!!  And I didn’t get home until 2:00am.

Mom #2, who was with me Saturday night at the concert, wondered how I will ever top this weekend…I’m not sure, but it’ll be fun trying!

Sunday morning, my friend DD texted me to say, “Let’s do breakfast instead of lunch!” Only for him did I drag my sorry butt out of bed 6 hours after I’d gone to sleep…and it’s only now while I’m sitting here writing this that I’ve slowed down since the start of my day…nearly 12 hours ago…

But, the lease on the new place is signed, the deposit is paid (that was only a little painful), and the boxes are ready to be packed…I was supposed to have done that this weekend, but I was only home long enough to sleep and shower…and tonight I’m so exhausted, I just don’t care…I’ll spend the week getting ready for the move this coming weekend…my birthday weekend…Happy freaking Birthday to me, huh?…actually, it’s a pretty damned good birthday…a new place – ready for new memories…I will start my 32nd year on this planet fresh…yeah, I’m good with that…

The Whirlwind Tour will continue this week as I get Aidan registered at his new school, Sean registered at daycare, the mailbox key dealt with (the previous tenant never turned it back in to my landlord, so I get to convince the USPS to give me another one…fun times…), the utilities turned over into my name, the utilities at the house dealt with, AND I’ve got to get myself ready to be out of the office for an entire WEEK!!!!!!!

I can sleep when I’m dead, right?

The Power of A Good Night’s Rest

Yesterday was not a good day for me…I felt like a failure…had I blogged last night, it would have been pure word vomit…and I just didn’t feel like doing that…the day was not horrible – in retrospect…I’m just too hard on myself…and when I put my name on something, I want it to be perfect…there was nothing perfect about yesterday…

I slept more than 8 hours last night…I haven’t done that in weeks! It was GREAT! I feel rested, restored, and ready to face the day…the weather is beautiful, the boys are going to spend time with their dad today – not a lot of time, but hell, a break’s a break!  Today has a lot of potential for something wonderful…and I’m going to go find out what it is…

I’m amazed at the power of a good night’s rest…I should do that more often!

There’s no significance to posting this song…except that I smile and dance whenever I hear it…and I feel like doing both right now!

The Story of Sean

Sean’s story is as different from Aidan’s story as night and day…quite like Sean and Aidan…they are polar opposites.  Is that because I’m a different mother with Sean than I ever was with Aidan? Is it just how it goes with children? Hell if I know…but these two are completely different, so it makes sense that their stories, are too…

Today is Sean’s 2nd birthday…and I don’t necessarily celebrate the fact that I managed to keep him alive, like I do with Aidan…Sean, poor baby, is the typical second child – not as many pictures, not as big a fuss made over him, and, thankfully, not as many mistakes made…

I planned for Sean…the way I plan for everything – every last detail considered with five contingency plans in place.  Sean is the reason my mother refers to me as Fertile Myrtle…five minutes after I stopped taking birth control I was pregnant…three weeks later none of my clothes fit…one contraction into labor and I was demanding the epidural…6 hours of labor, there he was…

Sean is an absolute joy (Aidan is my moody, emotional child)…Sean lights up a room with his easy-going smile…tantrums are rare but hellified…his vocabulary grows by the second…he’s social…he sleeps through the night…he eats whatever I feed him…he naps for 2 hours at a time…if you’d like to know Aidan as a baby, picture the EXACT opposite of all of that…The Ex, mistakenly, thought (hoped) conceiving Sean was going to be a long drawn out process…nope.  Done in less than a month…no fuss, no muss – just like Sean.

For 25% of Sean’s life, I’ve been split from his father…he knows his “Da-da” but it’ll never be quite like Aidan does…

I have actually had people (including some in my family) ask why I ever had Sean…well, obviously 2 years and 9 months ago, I wasn’t considering divorce (even though, apparently I should have been if my friends and family are any indication)…but none of that matters.  I can’t imagine my life without both of my boys. 

When Aidan is stormy, Sean is all sunshine…when Sean is angry, Aidan (if he’s not also angry) will do anything to bring his baby brother out of his bad mood…while Aidan is made completely out of PopTarts and chicken nuggets, Sean wants to eat whatever is on my plate…Aidan sleeps on his back with his hands behind his head, and Sean sleeps like me – curled up on his stomach, holding his pillow…

Sean adores, loves, CRAVES Thomas the Tank Engine…”Thomath, Thomath, my Thomath” is a familiar refrain in our house…the weekends are ruined if there isn’t a Thomas DVD playing (last weekend, thanks to Tropical Storm Lee preventing us from going to the library, was hell on earth with no Thomas DVD)…

Sean is my laid-back child…and I’m so grateful to have him and his big brother in my life.