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Sometimes I Forget

Crazy as it sounds, sometimes I forget that I’m a tough cookie…that life has thrown me curve-balls, and I’ve adapted and adjusted…and thrived

I forgot and let myself get very low this weekend…and then a nickname-less someone reminded me…he reminded me that I’m awesome…that I’m strong…that I’m intelligent…that I’m beautiful…that I accomplished more than most by myself – even when I was married…

I worry so much about the future that I forget the past and I neglect the present…

But no more…I’m a mouthy, smart ass who just happens to be smart as hell, driven as hell, and determined as hell…I’m not bad on the eyes, and I love with my whole heart…it’s time to remember that, revel in it even…

Watch out world, I’m back.

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My Mom Calls It Purging

That probably sounds pretty bad…let me explain…

Every six months or so, my mom used to go through her house, and if she hadn’t touched it, thought about it, or used it in the past 6 months, she got rid of it…whatever “it” was…I never had that luxury…I was married to a pack rat…a serious, serious pack rat…I often teased The Ex that if I died first, he’d end up on that show Hoarders

Well, he’s gone and I need to move…let the purging begin…

I want a clean slate…I want to start our new life fresh…this is a small step in the right direction…I made two separate trips to the Goodwill store to drop off donations today…the curb in front of my house looks like a rummage sale with all the stuff waiting to be picked up tomorrow…and my house feels a little bit bigger with less stuff in it…

I’m not that person who needs or wants a lot of stuff…I always look at it as that much more that I have to dust, clean, or otherwise keep up with…I’m also not a very sentimental person…I don’t keep cards for years (well, apparently I did because I still had all the cards The Ex had and didn’t take with him – gone now)…I don’t need cheap crap from souvenir shops when I travel…actually, pictures are more important to me than anything…which is strange because I don’t take a lot of them…

But, since I’m purging there are other things that will soon depart from my life…my grandmother’s china and antique hutch…when my grandfather gave it to me as a wedding gift, I wanted it because I thought that married people should have china…and to have something that had been so important to my grandmother seemed significant…now I look at it and think about how I never needed it…never used it…and it represents something to me that I don’t want to be reminded of…both the china and the hutch will go back to either my mom or my aunt – whichever is able to physically claim it…but it will stay in the family, because it should…just not with me…please don’t make me look at it anymore…it doesn’t represent happiness or family or anything like that to me…it’s empty promises…

My next big project – and it needs to happen this month, I’ve decided – is to finally scatter my dad’s ashes…I don’t want to move him again…and I don’t want him to live in my bedroom anymore (talk about an awkward conversation with some one some day in the future…”um, yeah, that’s my dad in the corner…don’t worry, he won’t bother you…” No thanks) He’s been with me through almost my entire marriage…not quite, but almost…once my mom met The Step it seemed a little strange for her to keep him…so he came to me…but now, I need a fresh start…and some things need to be laid to rest…my dad is one of them…

My mom doesn’t want me to go by myself…but I want it done before I move to the next place…but I’m not sure how to ask someone to go with me…”Yeah, would you like to go with me to the cemetery where my great-grandmother was buried?  I’m going to scatter my dad’s ashes there because he loved her like a grandmother (or mom, considering his age in relation to hers).”  Not exactly a fun-filled trip…well, knowing me, I’ll be making inappropriate jokes in an effort not to cry…but I don’t see many people jumping at the chance for that particular road trip…

But I know it’s the right thing to do…it’s not like I can ever forget him…and quite frankly, he gets forgotten in my room anyway…you don’t even want to know how infrequently I dust the little hutch where he lives…

With everything that is removed from this house, I feel a little lighter…with every thing I do that keeps me moving forward, I feel a little freer (more free?)…I think purging is the perfect word for it.

 

I Wouldn’t Mind Being Pampered…Maybe

I’ve been sick all week…and since it’s the second time in a few weeks, I’m feeling a little sorry for myself…wishing someone would pamper me, baby me, take care of me…except, I don’t allow that kind of thing…not since I was a kid and didn’t have a choice…

And that got me to thinking…why do I want to be pampered?  What does it mean to be pampered – what would I expect someone to do for me?  And why I haven’t I been pampered in the past?

I think I know the answer to the first one…like most of us (I hope!), the few times I was sick as a kid, my parents took great care of me…sometimes a little overzealously – the only time I ever had the flu, all my dad fed me for a solid week was Campbell’s chicken noodle soup and Saltines…and to this day, I detest chicken noodle soup…but I think there’s something comforting about having a parent take care of you when you’re in need…I hope Aidan and Sean feel that way about me one day…

I’m not sure what it means to be taken care of- I think it’s different for everyone…today, I would have said it was someone carrying Sean for me (he’s sick, too, so he’s definitely being babied)…or cooking dinner for me…but I don’t really know which answers the last question…

Why haven’t I ever been pampered, coddled, or babied?  Easy, because I don’t allow it…hell, I don’t even take good, well-meaning advice when I’m sick…you think I’m actually going to sit still and let someone else do everything for me?  I have no need to analyze this one to death…it’s just how I am…it’s probably a trust thing (and I have plenty of trust issues)…

This isn’t a woe-is-me, poor Michaela kind of thing…this is a genuine curiosity at why I have a desire for it when I’m sick and what it really means.  If I know what pampering is, I’ll recognize it when someone’s doing it…and then tell them to stop that shit and let me take care of myself…

Maybe I’m Okay With Change…

I have said before that I don’t like change…and I still believe that – to a certain extent…except…I think what I really don’t like is just changes in my routine…

I’m working on moving closer to work – less commute, less wear and tear on whatever I happen to be driving today, less time away from the boys…all good things…I’m dealing with a 90lb dog that needs a better home than I can give (which I hate to admit)……changes in Aidan’s in school and Sean’s daycare…pretty massive changes…and yeah, I’m a little tense about all of it, but I’m more excited than anything…

I’m excited about picking out a place based on my own needs (and of course the needs of the boys) without compromising with anyone on what’s best…I’m excited about being closer to my friends and work…I’m even a little excited about creating a new routine…

Everything I do now is based on what I’ve done for the past several years…I get up at a certain time, get ready in a certain way, drive a specific route, come home and do very specific things all based on routines created in the last few years…And now (eventually), I’ll have the opportunity to create something that’s just about us…with little basis on the past…that’s a pretty intoxicating thought…it moves me a little closer to being truly independent, I think…

Whatever I (we) do in the future will be based on what I create with the changes in our lives…I can live with that.

Inertia

Sometimes it takes an outside perspective to make me realize how much of an idiot I can be…I hate change…HATE IT…and yet, I managed to get a divorce…to demand a divorce and then make it happen.  Still, I really REALLY hate change…

I accomplished the divorce, and then thought I was done, I guess…there are so many other things I need to change in order to start living the life I want…but I’ve been resting on my laurels…I’ve been waiting for things to happen to me instead of just going out there, being ballsy (like I used to be) and doing what I need to do…

As I explained to a good friend, Music Man, I’m a peacekeeper…I avoid confrontation, I avoid the appearance of confrontation, I worry about confrontation even though usually there is no confrontation to worry about…so instead of just making a decision, sticking with it, fighting for it, and defending it, I’ve sat back and waited for change to happen to me, mostly in an effort to avoid confrontation…and the word used to describe my problem today was “inertia”…and yes, that was it exactly.

I’m done standing still…

I keep trying to make plans that will satisfy all parties involved…screw that.  I’m going to go with what works for Aidan, Sean, and myself…and that’s it…but I’m not going to follow every piece of advice I’m given, either…just because it works on paper or makes sense to you, doesn’t mean I’m following that path…

This whole thing – the divorce, the blog, my life – has been about figuring out my path and following it…I can’t let my fear of change, confrontation, and (most importantly) failure, stop me…all that does is create inertia…and I am DONE with that.

I don’t know how I’ll reach my goals…I don’t know what will happen tomorrow…but I know I’m moving forward…one foot in front of the other…on my terms.

Maddeningly Independent or Stupidly Independent?

Life works in funny ways…I was pretty convinced of what I just had to blog about…until life intervened…

My afternoon has been an emotional roller coaster…Bubba (the piece of crap I drive) decided to do crazy things on my way home…According to the Step, it’s probably my water pump…really?!  I talked to the Step when I got home to get direction on what to do…I had to wait for Bubba to cool off before we could do anything…in the hour between phone calls (I was under orders to call back to get further instructions), all I could think about was how I was going to have a new water pump installed…and what the hell I was supposed to drive in the meantime…and and and…

And it never dawned on me to ask anyone for help…Big Brother called and when he asked how I was doing, I just said, “Fine.”  I have other friends, plenty of good friends…it never occurred me to call them, either…I know that the people who care about me and the boys would be there for us…and I just don’t lean well…

I had a long conversation with BBFF (boy BFF) and discovered that he had been on the hunt to try and solve my car problem for me…without ever saying a word…I reminded him that if he had shown up at my door with a car, I would have thrown a major fit…he didn’t care…

I don’t like to ask for help with small things…and I certainly don’t like to ask for help with the big things…part of it is because my parents raised me to be independent…part of it’s my basic personality…part of it is because I don’t ever want to be perceived as weak or incapable…and part of it is because of what some would call flawed thinking…

Here’s the thing…I asked for this divorce…wanted it, needed it, and have NO regrets…but I took myself out of a marriage where there was at least the appearance of having help and chose a life of being by myself…to me, that means I need to handle the issues that come along by myself…I know who I can call when I need an ear, I know who loves my children enough to help me with them, I know those things…but I never want to lean so hard that I wear those friendships out…so it’s easier to hardly lean at all…And it drives my friends crazy…what can I say, I am often maddeningly, stupidly independent…

Oh, and there is a possible solution to the Bubba problem.  If it comes to pass, I will write about it in a separate post…but know that my loved ones are forcing me to accept help…and I’m so desperate for a solution, I’m just damned grateful and am actually speechless about it…

Girl Power

I talk about it a lot, but I’m still amazed at the things I can do on my own…

Today was a day for muscle-flexing…I have been so fed up with Aidan’s room lately…it’s not his fault – it’s no messier than any other 6 year old’s room (I hope)…but the walls are green…putting green, to be exact…Aidan adored green when he was 4…and I was overly indulgent…but it’s not just that, it’s his carpet. 

When Almost Ex and I bought the house, we knew we would need to replace the carpet – it’s original to the house (20 years!!)…I can’t get Aidan’s floor clean enough anymore…so this morning, I decided to rip up the carpet…which forces me to do something about the room…I can’t have an unfinished room…

At 9:00 a.m., I started ripping and pulling and tugging…and moving furniture…the carpet came up easily (it is 20 years old)…the padding was even easier…and yes, this might not be news to some, but I’ve never done this…the carpet tack (is that the word, I want?) was a little more challenging, but an hour later, it was done.

Hauling the carpet out was the worst, but by the time I got it to the curb, I was ready to beat my chest and do a touchdown dance in my front yard…Hell YEAH, I did that…I know, I know, it’s just carpet…but it started the whole day right…and reminded me that I am physically strong (ok, sort of)…I moved furniture, I moved carpet…and yeah, it would have been easier and faster with help, but who cares?!

I’m one of those annoying people who appreciates offers of help, but rarely accepts them…I feel like I need to be strong enough, independent enough, efficient and proficient enough, to handle everything on my own…it’s physically hard for me to ask for help or even accept it…so when I can prove to myself and the world that I am capable of doing something hard on my own, it’s very gratifying…it will also make me an absolute joy for some brave man one day…someone should start praying for that future mystery person now…

Today was a day for girl power…I don’t need no damn body!  I got this! (This is where I mentally beat my chest and grunt and all sorts of ridiculous things.) 

I think this is what I’m going for (at least for today):

 

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