Friday, January 30, 2009

Lightening Fast

Life changes so quickly these days. This week, J had his custody hearing. What happened was just downright unbelievable. The Ex did not show. How can you not show to the hearing that decides the fate of your children???? But, it was in J's favor anyway. I guess she realized that she didn't have to show since she wasn't going to win anyway. I don't know. What I do know, is that as of Monday, our lives will change forever. J gets his kids. We are sure of that, based on the judge's comments. The hearing was rescheduled to Monday, only because an important mediation report was missing. So that has to be redone Monday morning. Then, Monday afternoon, the hearing will take place a second time.

J and I went to dinner last night to discuss the change and next steps. For the kids, it will be a hard adjustment. After hearing horrible things about their dad for so long, it will take some critical intervention to help them to reconcile their feelings. J mentioned the judge wants to mandate counseling. He is happy with that, because he has tried to have them in therapy before, but the ex thwarted him often. The kids will need time to adjust, and so will J. For that reason, as of Monday, I step into the shadows for a little while.

I assured him that I love him and want what's best for the kids. I am quite reasonable about this in my head. He and the kids will need to find a rhythm again, a way to live and work together on their relationships. What J doesn't need (and the kids definitely don't need) is an outside party interfering or encroaching on their precious time together. I made sure that J knew that I fully expect to be on the sidelines during this time. I can handle it. I know how I would feel if it were me trying to re-establish my ties to my son. I don't mind being regulated to 3rd string for the sake of the kids. I'll take my every-other weekend "J Time" and be happy about it.

But not really.

I am sad. I totally got used to having him around. It's going to be a hard adjustment for me. My head knows it is the right thing to do, and my heart sort of knows it, too. Mostly, I am unsure of the future and that is always so unsettling for me. I am you typical type-A personality. Must have a plan. Must be in charge. Must know what's coming.

And I don't.

What if it takes YEARS to "fix" the kids? We could be in this holding pattern indefinitely.

What if J finds that he is torn between the kids and me? I would HATE to be a burden or a worry to him. Especially now. He doesn't need that.

What if he stops loving me? Ok, I don't believe that will happen, but it is a concern. When we are no longer "in the bubble" (using his words) and are facing these tough life issues, it will not be so easy or comfortable. Will he find that I was merely a passing fascination?

Wow, didn't expect that to come out, to be honest.

For the past few months, J and I have been building a foundation for our relationship. I knew the possibility was there that he would get his kids and I never pretended that he would be "all mine" at any time. We talked about blending our families and settling into a place together. We talked about what we would do for childcare, schooling, etc. We day dreamed about putting an addition on to the house and making room for everyone in my little house. We discussed all this and more.

Only now that it is a reality do I realize that it's going to take more time than I had previously thought. And it's going to be a lot of work. And, I will not expose N to the turmoil of the time period it takes for J and his kids to reconnect. He is too young and won't understand. J and I talked about this, too, but we are clear that we will stay together through it all. I have firmly believed from the beginning of our relationship that the kids would be with him and that we would forge a life together as a new family. N believes it, too. He keeps asking me to marry J so he can have a brother and sister. As the saying goes, "This too shall pass." All of the unknown and scary is only temporary in the grand scheme of things. It will work out.

Life changes so fast. Who knows? I can be a worry wart sometimes. I know that whatever happens, the best in life is still to come.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Sad State of Affairs

Read this.

Unbelievable. What is wrong with this picture?

I'll tell you. I rarely get all riled up about these things, being that there is little that can be done by me personally. But I have something to say about this issue.

The better team won. Period.

Why should they apologize? Why should they feel ashamed that they played better and got excited when they were so far ahead. The whole idea that they should "pity" the other team, who was not up to their caliber, is insane. This is not a life-or-death situation, people. If the outcome was the other way around, would the other school feel that THEY should forfeit their win and apologize for the better play? I think not.

What gets my goat the most is the fact that the school administration is trying to make this a religious argument. Fugghetaboutit! This was a sports exercise. I really don't see JC on the court at all in this. Should we feel bad for the losing team? Maybe, if they played hard and did their best. Should we penalize the girls that worked hard to be a better team and minimize their success by forcing them to be "Christ-like" and apologize for their achievement? Hell to the no! This is the whole point of sports, people! Work hard, play well, and win. Every competition has a winner and a loser. That's just life.

Grant it, our society is pretty cut throat and hung up on getting ahead. In theory, I understand what the school is trying to promote. I just think they are going about it the wrong way. If you take a team and get them to play their best, and the coach insists that they played fairly and with honor, then why take that and make a religious statement from it?

Well, I don't know. My sense of fairness is disturbed. I would rather not play at all if the school I played for didn't support my success. The administration won't even acknowledge that the team played well! If I was one of those girls, I would quit just for the sheer lack of support from the school. I applaud the coach for standing his ground and affirming his belief in his team.

When I played basketball in gradeschool and my freshman year, I was probably the worst player on the team. As a consequence, I didn't get much court time. But I was never one to back down from a challenge. What are we teaching our youth if we tell them to "feel sorry" for the team that didn't play well? Perhaps we are teaching them compassion? Ok, we can do that without making them feel disgraced for winning. But more importantly, if we hold them up and say, "You did well. Maybe next time, when you are so far ahead you can relax a little and not be so aggressive." Even that doesn't sit well with me. If the girls played as they were supposed to, why penalize them?

I don't know. What do you think?

Thursday, January 22, 2009

For AG

On Tuesday, I watched history unfold from the comfort of my couch. My darling son, N, was ill and laid up with fever. He preferred playing Lego Batman to watching an historic event so I hooked up my bedroom flat screen in the living room and created a viewing center of my own. The inauguration was enthralling to me as I am new to paying attention to politics. What I was watching was political, but most of that was lost on me. Instead, I was taking part in a great moment in our nation's legacy. And, right up until the moment when John Roberts flubbed the oath, I was fascinated. Then the flub. What? Our highest ranking judge couldn't remember one little oath??? And he was READING it...What's up with that? No matter. It was cool anyway. Except for the musical interlude I could have done without. And the poetry reading. And the "invocation" and later the other preacher talking (whatever happened to the separation of church and state anyway? Sheesh). It was a very solemn and touching moment for me. Did I cry? No, not really. But I felt the magnitude of the moment anyway. The speech was also moving to me. I can't imagine the weight that man was feeling at that moment, and yet he spoke to eloquently and strongly. Awesome.

I watched ALL of it. Right through to the end of the parade. Then, I had to turn it off for Idol. Yes, sad as it is, I still needed my Idol fix.

Yesterday, N was sick again, so I worked from home. You know what? It sucks working from home! Things tend to go a little off at work and I end up spending a good part of the day trying to keep people from being idiots. It's like glorified babysitting. And I hate that part.

But, for some reason, I had a huge burst of energy around 4 p.m. I looked around and realized my house was a WRECK. I got N to help me take down the Christmas tree, then I went around and put stuff away. J came home and put stuff in the attic for me. Then I was a lunatic cleaning, vacuuming, and moving stuff. We ran to Casa Depot and got tape to fix my rug. We fixed the rug and I finished moving stuff for the night. I am not 100% satisfied with the layout, but there is more room to move around, so I am happy with it anyway....for now.....

I was happily exhausted by 9 p.m. I felt that I had at least gotten somewhere. Ever get that feeling that life is out of control? I have had that feeling for awhile now. By rearranging my house, I am taking control of my environment and it helps me feel like some part of my life is back in order. Controlled chaos, if you will :) Know what I mean?

Back to work now. Maybe tonight I'll have the urge to clean the bathrooms....maybe.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Return

It may be time to visit a doctor. After 62 days of absence, Aunt Flo decided to return with a vengeance. Not only did she fail to give me proper notice, she also has determined that being gone for 2 months means that she has to squeeze in two months of pain and suffering in a 4 day span to make up for it. Without giving too much detail, she is causing me to wake almost every 2 hours and the pain can be excruciating at times. Makes me wonder if I could have another cyst? Whatever the reason, I shall call my doc this week to make an appt to find out. Fun, huh?

The weekend was awesome, despite the reappearance of my nemesis. Because it was this weekend that I finally reconnected with my dearest friend from high school.

Say what you will about these sharing sites like MySpace and FaceBook. It is through FB that I found RV again! 23 years ago, my closest friends were RV and MV. We had gone through grade school together and managed to stay close through high school. MV sort of dropped out of our lives shortly after that, but RV and I stayed pretty tight. She moved all the way to DE from PA and we started to lose touch. I was young, naive, and lazy - I thought we would always be bestest friends and didn't think that I needed to put too much effort into seeing RV or keep up with her. Little did I know.

After college, RV moved around and I lost touch with her. Truly, I had lost my dearest friend. I forged new relationships with those that I feel are special friendships, but I always regretted losing touch with my other "sister". She was such a part of my life in the days I was growing up - we went everywhere together. We talked about getting houses on the same block and having our kids grow up together. We dreamed about the lives we would have and the places we would go. We wanted to be close always.

After falling out of touch, I had briefly found her 4 years ago when perusing a classmates website. We made tentative plans to get together but that fell through when my son became ill. Then my phone broke and my computer crashed and I lost her number. We lost touch once again.

Last week, I was looking through the high school connections on FB and I saw her again. This time, I was not letting her go! We traded some email and made plans to meet for dinner on Saturday night. Since RV has recently torn her ACL, I offered to make meatloaf and mashed potatoes. She had the rest. I was excited and nervous. What would she be like now? Would I still feel connected to her? Would our kids get along? Can we recapture our friendship? All of these things raced through my head for the 24 hours leading up to our dinner.

I needn't have worried. RV opened the door and, taking one look at her, I could see she looked JUST the same. She was still tall and beautiful. She still had the most exotic cheekbones and eyes. She looked no older than her 20 year old self! She said the same of me, but I think she was just being kind :)

N and her son hit it off at once. They liked the same things and were able to be friendly straight off the bat. RV and I chatted about family and got the history we had missed. We sat down to a lovely dinner and I actually found myself wanting to pester her with questions. But I knew that I didn't want to come off being too eager and overbearing. I didn't want to overwhelm her! LOL

After a nice dinner and dessert, it was time to go. We made plans to get together again in two weeks, since that would be when N was home with me again. I was almost sad leaving, because I had wanted to reconnect for so long, I didn't feel like we had enough time even though two hours had passed.

The best part is, she only lives 5 minutes from my house! How cool. Even though she'll be moving in March, she is planning on staying local, so that should be good. I do not want to lose her again. I just hope she feels the same way about me.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Aaaak! Playing Catch Up

So life is busy, right? Well, it's been a week since I have been online and I am going through major withdraw! I have tons of stuff going on, so I better get down to it...

Mediation went rather well, all things considered. Some more drama took place after, but nothing so horrible that it caused an ulcer. Best news of all, the mediator is recommending that J get custody! Thanks for your prayers!

This weekend was the Mary Kay January Jamboree. It was AWESOME and inspiring. I was so moved that I am rededicating myself to the business. I am pretty competitive (right J?) and so I WON'T let myself down on this one..... I was also privy to a "beauty consultation" for my skin, color and hair. I wanted a new sleek look, something professional, and was told that a wedge type bob might work for me.

So....

Last night I got my hair cut! It is incredible! Of course, my stylist did a much better job of showing it off but I'll work with it and figure it out. It's a little flat to me. I think I need to get some product to make it more voluminous. Even still, it's awesome and I love it. Even J liked it, so it must be pretty good. I feel great and it gives me such a feeling of empowerment.

I was supposed to have my mirror fixed on my car this morning and have the repair man come and look at my stove today, but I have many things going on at work. I'll need to reschedule those appointments. I am hoping for tomorrow. We'll see :)

Well, off to put on my "face" and then I'll take a pic and let you all see my fab new 'do. Ta-ta!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Need Prayers Please

Ok, so I am currently on a "vacation" from religion, but I am still asking for your prayers. See, this afternoon is the mediation hearing for J's custody dispute with his ex. She has gone to great legnths to make him look like a horses ass. She called Family Services last month on some trumped up charges that she had Crystal report (and exhaggerate I must add). When DFS closed the case for unsubstantiated allegations, the freaking wench called the cops this morning to report the SAME charges! So, this morning, I was sitting in my living room watching the cops interrogate J and try to get to the bottom of the allegations. Not only is this fruit loop wench (really wish I could use stronger words, and I am trying really hard NOT to) desperate, she is a dangerously psychotic person. She got her kids to lie and steal for her in the past, and now she got them to accuse their father.

I have no doubt in my mind that J will eventually win the day since the lunatic psychopath bitch lives in a motel and doesn't have a job to speak of to support her kids, and lies and cheats her way through everything. But it is a really hard thing to watch him keep getting these low blow hits along the way and have the feeling that there is something else coming right around the corner.

So, please send up a prayer to your higher power of choice. He needs it, the kids need it, and even the freak needs it.

Thanks.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

A Trip Worth Remembering

Happy 2009 y'all! Back from Michigan and finally have a few minutes to spare to go over the wonderful weekend I had at the farm. J and I drove through snow and boring landscapes to arrive at his parents' house shortly after 12 noon on Thursday. It was actually a nice ride. We broke it up so that helped a lot.

The farm is actually right on the Indiana/Michigan border in a sleepy little town called Bronson. There is a lake 200 yards into Indiana called Lake Pleasant with summer cottages dotted along the circumference. Across from the lake is a farm, and then another, and then another. Very serene and peaceful :) One third of the farm is in Indiana, the other two thirds are in Michigan. This is really very cool because you can literally stand in their side yard and be in two states at the same time! ok, it's the little things that amuse me :)

N (formerly known as "Dino" but is now a big boy who prefers not to have 'cute' nicknames) was excellent in the car and in meeting the family. The moment we walked into the house, it felt warm, cozy and inviting...largely due to the warmth and graciousness of J's family. There is Mama B, Papa R, TJ and JH, and J's sister D and her partner JK. Add to that the 4 dogs and a cat and it was your typical funny and frenzied meeting! LOL Seriously, I felt at home straight away and didn't feel nervous or anything meeting the "future in-laws". Mama B especially reminded me of my dear Nana and her friendliness and joy of life were really inviting. Papa R was apparently on his best behavior, but I found him to be funny and wicked smart. Then there is TJ - a Brit Chick with a great sense of timing and no shame, and her husband JH who was just as sharp. The two of them had me in stitches almost immediately. D and JK (who are expecting a baby in April) were just as warm and friendly. Everyone really made me feel accepted and at ease within minutes. J and I unloaded the car and set about settling in. I got the grand tour of the house (a newer construction that is in the spirit of an older farm house, with lovely details that were taken from the original house that was knocked down. Beautiful chandeliers and a couple of old pieces of furniture were lovingly restored and served as functional pieces. The kitchen was awesome - and opened to a lovely breakfast area. In the breakfast nook as well as the living room, was a display of some of Mama B's Christmas Village houses. Wow! It looked like an old time department store display (for those of you familiar with Wanamakers, it was very much like that used to be!) and was so amazing that N took tons of pics. I will post them when I get them downloaded.

We settled in for a meal and then after we opened gifts. I was surprised and humbled by the fact that they had bought both N and I gifts as well! How awesome is that? Barely know these people and there they were, giving us gifts. We sat around for a bit talking and then it was off to bed.

The next day we went out to the farm to get a tour of the barns (awesome!) and the path to Lake Michiana (the lake the farm backs up to). Cold and windy, but not too horrible, it was a brisk and invigorating walk. I was coming down in earnest with the cold that I started on the beginning of the trip, but I think the walk helped. At least, it felt like it did. I did have to make J take me to Angola to the local superstore called Meijers (Meyers) for cold meds, but in all, I did pretty good. My spirits were up and there was no way I wasn't going to enjoy my time there!

Went for another walk on Saturday to the other lake that is in Indiana (across the street and down about 200 feet). It was cold, but not as cold and windy as Friday, so it was better to walk in. N went out on the frozen lake with J and I got a couple of cute pics with my camera phone. D and JK had to leave earlier in the day, so it was a bit quieter as all the dogs went home with them :) N was sad, he loves dogs, and in fact had tried to persuade the Chiuaua to let him hold her. No go! That one was about as timid as they come. The other dogs, a HUGE shepherd, a large basset hound, and a high-strung Palmaranian, kept the place hopping for N and were a bit more accepting of his attention.

Both Friday and Saturday nights JH set off fireworks and N seemed to enjoy them "even if they were loud". It was hard to say good bye. I really didn't want to leave at all! Mama B loaded us up with the wonderful foods she prepared - pierogies, Gołąbki (pronounced "gowompki"), kielbasa, and of course kiszka (pronounced 'kieshka')....and then we were off for the 12 hour drive home.

Honestly, it wasn't such a bad drive. J and I were still upbeat and N was on his best behavior. We made it home by 8 p.m. and were bone tired but happy. It was a great trip and we are planning on going back in the spring. JK should have her baby around Easter, so we are looking at those dates. I better get started on the baby blanket!

Pics coming soon......

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Smells like....

We are on the road and I am happy to report that the trip has been smooth and fun (snowstorm on the mountain be damned! 4 wheel drive rocks, y'all). As we crossed over the state line from PA, J and I looked at each other and said, "Smells like Ohio!"

This is a joke that we picked up from a blog called Roar Of The Tigers - by Samara Pearlstein about the Detroit Tigers. There is apparantly a rivalry between her state college and the college one of the ball players (for details, see J). She was commenting on his trade to another team, and then stated that he smells like Ohio. We found this unbelievably funny and use the tag line any chance we get. So, naturally as we are driving in Ohio, many references are made to the aromatic qualities of the state.

Just as we got back on the road this morning (having stopped for the night at a hotel) Dino commented,
"What's that smell?"

"OHIO!" Came the unison reply from the front seats.