I am turning into not a very nice person. The last year, has had an unfortunate effect of making me a bitter, crabby, bitchy person. This is probably not really all that true, but I just don’t know how much more I can take.
Mea has said to me, too many times to count, that I am always making a frowny face. Which is not good for my overall mood, not to mention that I am going to end up with permanent frown lines, and need Botox or something.
Let’s do a recap of 2013 so far…
My Mom diagnosed with stage 4 cancer.
Fired from job of 10 years.
Unemployment for four and a half months.
More than one friend or friend’s spouse diagnosed with cancer.
One job offer, at a significant cut in pay.
Big daughter moves to Ohio.
House is broken into.
Small daughter’s babysitter quits with no notice right before Thanksgiving.
Big daughter calls crying as her work will not let her have any time off for Christmas, and she cannot come home.
This last one is just the icing on the cake.
Mack can’t afford to just quit her job, it took her 2 months to even find this crappy job she doesn’t really like, she had talked about just quitting and coming home, but this just isn’t really a reasonable thing to do. My Mom is just devastated. My heart hurts, I cried at work this morning. Blubbered all over one of my co-workers.
I cannot even begin to tell you what this is going to do to Mea. She is going to be crushed. She has said multiple times that she only wants Mack home for Christmas. Now, she’s not fooling me completely, she still wants a guitar (she’s getting that) a computer (not so much) a I-Pod Touch (nope) and a Nerf bow and arrow (yes!), but I cannot provide the one thing that she has asked for over and over again. It is at the top of each Christmas list. I have even heard her whispering it to Sparkle Heart….
“I want my MackamooSissy home for Christmas….”
This breaks my heart, not just for Mea, but for me too. I miss Mack like crazy. I have been good, I haven’t complained about her not being here, I was sad when she wasn’t here for Thanksgiving, and I had to suck it up a few times. I can only begin to imagine what Christmas without her is going to be like.
Every year, for as long as she has been alive, and old enough to actually “help” Nana decorate their house for Christmas, she has been the main “elf” doing all of the decorating. She told my Mom before she left for Ohio, that she understood that decorating couldn’t wait, but to please save the nativity for her to put out.
My Mom made the nativity scene with her ceramics ladies. Sanded, painted, and fired each piece herself. The nativity has always been Mack’s last duty in the decorating. Mom was saving it for her.
My Mom sent me a text that she can’t put it out. She had my Dad put the box back in storage.
We are going to pull everything together, get it wrapped so that I can get it shipped out in time for Mack and her boyfriend to have gifts to open. Some of her stuff isn’t here yet, so I guess she may end up getting some of her presents in installments. She has been making many of her gifts for the kids and grown-ups, so they are not all finished either. I told her I would help her with the shipping when she was ready and able.
We have been planning on going out to visit over Spring Break, and to be honest, March 14th cannot come soon enough for me. I need to see my girl. I need to be able to touch her and give her a hug. Skype is wonderful, but it’s not exactly the same thing as giving your big girl a snuggle.
I am over this year.
It has been awful, and I just don’t know how much more I can take.
I’m tired of whining.
I’m tired of not being my normal snarky, somewhat happy self.
I feel like I am a character in a bad Lifetime movie.
It seems that each time things are starting to move in the right direction in one part of my life, or the lives of my loved ones, something else falls apart in another area of my life or another loved one.
I am getting really sick of it.
I mean really fucking sick of it.
This morning, Mea’s babysitter pulled me aside and told me that her husband has cancer. They do not know what kind yet, (they have ruled out prostate, but have said very little else to them) they just have a location, something in his lower area, most likely back/hip/pelvis area. PET test to come sometime next week, so they will know what they are dealing with.
She told me and I burst into tears. They are the closest thing to a second set of grandparents that Mea has, Mack too for that matter.
These people are more than just Mea’s babysitter. I have known them since I was a child. Mack was Jimbo’s girl. Every time I see him he asks me about Mack. Which is almost daily. Mea is his little cuddle bug too.
I am just sick.
I am worried about them.
I sent them flowers and candy this afternoon.
And although it is somewhat selfish, I have been worried about what it will mean for our daycare situation. I hate the thought of Mea going anywhere but there. I also don’t know how they will be able to keep up with daycare, and take care of Jim’s needs once they come up with a treatment plan.
I know firsthand how crazy those first several months were with my Mom, and I also know that if she had a bunch of kids around her all day long every single day that she would have gone nuts. Not to mention that it can be a little scary for the little kids to see someone they love sick. I am terrified that this is starting to be a “normal” thing that Mea has to see and live with.
I just need a break from all this stupid cancer business.
I am sure all the people who are actually dealing with it want the same thing.
It just pisses me off.
I am just so done.
Like most parents, I try to limit the amount of TV that Mea watches. I also try to make sure that she is watching TV shows or movies that are, for the most part, age appropriate.
In our perpetual search for appropriate TV that everyone can stand to watch, we often end up watching Nick or Disney. We were huge iCarly fans, so when the show ended last year we were all a little sad, and had to try to find a new show that we would all like to watch again.
Jessie has opened up many conversations about adoption with Mea. Jessie is a show about a nanny from Texas, a wealthy couple in a New York penthouse, and their four children. One biological child, and three adopted children, one domestic, and two international. A little too Pitt/Jolie for my taste, but it is still good to see adoption portrayed in a positive way on TV.
On a recent episode that we watched the youngest daughter wanted to plan a huge Gotcha Day celebration.
We always do something special to celebrate the day Mea came home. (I really don’t care for the “gotcha day” phrase, just seems weird and wrong in my mind, so we have always just said it was the day she came home or her home anniversary, something along those lines.)
Last night I was laying down with her watching a different episode of Jessie, and she asked if we could have a party to celebrate the day she came home. She wanted to invite all of our family, and have a BBQ, with cake.
She asked about the day she came home again, and I told her the story again about how her foster mother June brought her to us, that when she arrived it was just Mack and I home, and that Daddy joined us later after baseball. How she cried a little, and then ate lunch, her favorite, spaghetti. We went outside and played for a bit, and then she took a nap snuggling in my arms.
We usually talk about that first week. How she met her Nana and Papa (in the hospital) when I took her to meet her babysitter, that we had her pictures taken, we celebrated Mack’s fifteenth birthday, all the things that I can remember from those first days home.
There have been times when we have seen adoption portrayed on TV or a movie and it has not been something Mea could relate to. Now we are not rich, we do not live in a penthouse in New York, but the youngest character in the show is about Mea’s age, and black. She seems to see some similarities between herself and Zuri.
I think this is all a good thing. It keeps us talking. It keeps the adoption conversation going. It actually is a cute show.
In the mean time, I am going to try to pull together a family BBQ on the 22nd.
Today, my Mom took me to buy a new outfit to wear on my first day of work at my new job next week.
Small things like this, are things that she has always done for all of us. New job, promotion, transfer, some sweet gift, surprise, or other kind of gesture.
She offered to buy me a new suit to wear to interviews when I lost my job. My first interview happened before we had a chance to go shopping. I told her I would take a rain check, and get something new later.
Today was the day.
Gone are the power shopping trips. Epic laps around the mall finding just the right thing.
Today, we parked in the closest handicap spot.
We got a stroller/cart at Kohl’s so she could have something to hold onto to keep her steady. It reminded me of my Nana, who had to get a cart if we were running into the store for a carton of milk.
I try not to think of her being sick. I don’t want her to be.
It is what it is, and some days it just hits you.
On days like today, my smallest daughter spending the afternoon and evening with her Nana and Papa, it hit me as I hung my new pants in the closet that there may not be all that many more days like today.
Even as she fights through this disease, it has a strong hold on our family. As much as she doesn’t want it to control her, and her life, it feels like it is slowly taking over.
Last night Mack and her boyfriend came over for dinner, and somehow we got on to the subject of our neighbor who passed away last year. Mea asks, “What made Judy die?”
I know that it wasn’t the right thing to do, but at that moment, I had to leave the room. Every part of me wanted to scream and cry.
Judy died of lung cancer too.
I could overhear Mack just say simply, “Judy was sick.”
Mea accepted that answer, and went on showing off for her sister.
Sometime soon, she is not going to accept that as an answer.
I don’t expect her to, and I know that here soon, I most likely need to actually talk to her about her Nana. I am still at a loss for words when it comes to this. Sometimes I cannot even process my own emotions, much less those of a seven-year-old.
So where days like today are a reminder of what has always been, it was also a reminder of what is to come. Tonight, I cry a little. Mourn what was, and how things should be, and am grateful for the moments that we still have together.
In my last post I mentioned some issues with my middle step-daughter, C. Since I wrote it, there have been more issues, and I need to write it out.
So here we go…
First, let me give you the back story. I haven’t talked about this before, because I didn’t think it was relevant, but I have come to the conclusion that it is indeed relevant.
My husband was married to the evil one. They had our oldest step-daughter E1. When E1 was five months old, the separated for six months or so. During that six month time frame, C was conceived. Her mother is not the evil one.
The evil one, and my husband reconciled, she got pregnant with E2. By the time E2 was three years old they were divorced.
Needless to say, when people discover that my middle step-daughter has a different mom, it is a weird story.
C’s mom did not tell my husband about C, until she was three or four years old. She had/has some issues, but she is not a bitch. I really have no idea why she waited to tell him, but she did.
I think that C has some unresolved daddy issues. I have talked to E1 and E2 about this, and they both agree. So in addition to the jealousy issues we already know about, I think there is some other stuff brewing around in that head of hers.
I had gotten a text from C on Memorial Day basically telling me that her feelings are hurt that we hadn’t watched the girls in a while (she has oldest and youngest granddaughters, 3 and 10) and that she felt that we had E1 and E2’s kids more often than hers. It may be the case, I don’t really know. It’s not like we have a set schedule for having the grandkids. Sometimes the girls ask us to watch them, sometimes we ask for them. I don’t keep score.
C tends to wait until the last-minute to ask us to babysit. Usually an hour or less before she needs someone to sit. At the longest it is a day or two notice. If she has to work, or if she has school, we usually say yes even if we had other plans or whatnot. She has complained in the past because we “only watch the girls if she is working.” We can’t win.
Her kids are not very nice to Mea. They are better if we have one at a time, but if we have them together, they can actually gang up on her, and can be mean. In her own house. With her toys. It’s not really fair. I have talked to the kids about it several times, tried to talk to her but she doesn’t want to talk about it.
It turns out that last week, she had decided on Friday that she and her girls were not coming to Mea’s birthday party. So basically, the excuse that she gave me on Saturday morning, the one that I thought was pretty weak anyway, was a total lie.
She had said that she would stop by sometime this week and bring Mea a present, and to say Happy Birthday. (Please note: I do not care about a present. I don’t believe that Mea cares about a present. She wants to see her sisters and her nieces and nephews at things like this.) We did not hear from or see her until last night.
Around five o’clock, she posted something on Facebook about how she should have gotten a sitter for the night because her kids were driving her nuts. I knew that the text was coming, as soon as I saw the FB post.
Sure enough, maybe five minutes later my phone went off.
My husband was off work yesterday. Originally, he was going to take Mea to the pool, but we had thunderstorms on and off all day. In the morning, E1 called and asked if we could watch her youngest. He had thrown up at daycare the day before, and although he was fine, he couldn’t go back to daycare. So since we knew the pool was out, we thought it would be fun for Mea and help E1 not miss another day of work. It was his dad’s weekend to have him, so his dad picked him up last night around 6.
We had already planned to have the baby grandson overnight last night. I had asked E2 if we could have him on Monday. We haven’t had him overnight for three weeks.
The first text from C said that she was having a bad day, and at her breaking point with the kids.
I didn’t answer.
The second text said,”I’m willing to bargain at this point…I would keep Mea for you guys any night you wanted. Tomorrow, Sunday, Monday, I’m off all those days.”
Mea is not some thing to be bargained with. She is a person. She is her sister. She should sometimes just want to spend time with her. This is not how it works at all.
Honestly, that last text just sort of sent me over the edge. It probably shouldn’t have, but it did.
I had sent E2 a picture of the baby doing something silly, and she sent me a text replying that C was on the war path. She had called E2, to see if we had E1’s kids in addition to the baby.
There is no possible way that we can have all five grandkids here at one time. Five grandkids, plus Mea is six children under the age of ten. Our house is not big enough. We quite honestly do not have the space for them all to be here at one time for an overnight. We also cannot have grandkids here every single night of every single weekend. It’s not fair to Mea or to us for that matter.
She went on to vent to E2 about how shitty we are, how we aren’t fair to her and her girls, and so on.
I wanted to respond to her. I still want to. My husband doesn’t want anything to do with it. We also found out yesterday that C’s youngest daughter had a recital this week. We didn’t even know that she was in dance.
I know that I have attempted to be the best step-mom I can be to her. She only calls when she wants something or needs someone to watch her kids. We don’t have a relationship past that. These are the only times that she calls.
The other girls will call or text me just to talk. We have a relationship. It goes both ways.
I just don’t know what to do.
Although, I know that kids grow up faster than fast, I still cannot believe that my littlest girl is now seven.
We had a birthday party for her friends, cousins, and nieces at the zoo on Saturday. The kids had a great time. It was a bit of a cluster, but they didn’t seem to notice.
The day started off by my middle step-daughter calling right before we left for the party stating that she and her girls were not going to be there. Her reason sounded pretty weak to me, and after our oldest daughter arrived at the party with her two kids, she basically confirmed that she thought that she just didn’t want to come. I am pissed about this. A week ago she called and guilt tripped me by saying that we hadn’t had the girls over much lately. When she has asked the last few times we had plans, plain and simple. I fed into the guilt trip, and had her girls over last weekend. Now, she has both her Dad and I annoyed with her. This is not the first birthday of Mea’s that she has missed. This is also the same step-daughter who we had the issue with last year.
I paid for a party at the zoo. We are members, so there is a small discount. When I signed up for the party, we were supposed to have two animals be presented to the kids to pet, and to learn about. Mea had her choice of a few different animals to have presented, she chose to have a baby alligator, and a hedge hog. As a “bonus” otherwise known as an attempt to shut the crazy mom up, they also brought a duck. They all liked being able to see the animals up close and to be able to pet them.
More than anything, the zoo party was just disorganized. From the website, they made it look quite structured, but it was far from that. Due to their disorganization, we didn’t even have time to actually go through the zoo.
The kids ate cupcakes and ice cream, rode the carousel, rode the train and feed the giant fish.
One of Mea’s friends came over to stay the night after we were done with the party.
Yesterday, on Mea’s actual birthday, we met Mack and my parents for breakfast. I didn’t tell Mea that they were going to be there. She was so excited to see Mack on her birthday, I thought she was going to cry. Tomorrow, Mack, Mea and I are going to go to an amusement park for the day.
We had my parents, my brother-in-law and his fiancée over for Mea’s birthday dinner. We bought her a 3DS, a few games, and a gymnastics mat. My parents bought her a practice beam (just lies on the floor) a new leotard with matching shorts, and a 3DS game.
Mea declared this the best birthday ever.
I will most likely come back to vent a bit about this situation with my step-daughter. I need to get some of it out before my head explodes. I didn’t want her lack of caring to ruin Mea’s birthday, so I let it go on Saturday.
In no particular order, crap in my brain.
- I had two interviews yesterday, an actual interview and a phone pre-interview that has led to an in person interview on Thursday.
- Both jobs are making decisions next week.
- Both have good points, and bad.
- We shall see what next week brings.
- Mack and her boyfriend are traveling to visit the grad school this weekend. He will see what the school and program are about. Hopefully, they will find a place to live, and she can try to look for places to start applying to work.
- We still haven’t told Mea about the move yet.
- I want to, almost did the other day, but my husband hushed me the other day when I started to tell her.
- It sort of made me want to punch him.
- She needs to know.
- I may tell her today.
- I have asked Mack to come clean out her old bedroom. Box stuff up she wants to keep, and throw the rest of it away. I am happy to store it for her, but it would be nice to have that room to use.
- It’s been three years.
- It can’t sit in limbo for three more years while they are off in Ohio.
- I thought she’d be upset, but she was fine with it.
- I told her that I was going to move some of Mea’s toys down there, and now she want to paint a mural in there for her.
- Mea will love this so much!
- I am still at odds with my sister.
- Last week, I asked her if she could take Mea for a night.
- She couldn’t, the girls were staying the night with friends, and they were going out with friends.
- I understood, to a point.
- I am slightly annoyed that she never asks for her niece, or if she does it is for an overnight on a Wednesday or a Thursday, which really is of no use to us.
- She told me to ask my Mom to take her.
- My parents had my nieces the next night, they had been out-of-town for the previous few days, and I felt it would be too much to ask.
- Mom tires easily.
- The kids are exhausting.
- Two nights in a row would be too much.
- My sister told our Mom (after the fact) that I had needed a sitter and wouldn’t ask her.
- My Mom then “yelled” at me for not asking her to take Mea.
- My sister is a big blabber mouth.
- But I guess we already knew that, right?
- My Mom had a CT scan yesterday.
- Results back tomorrow.
- Dr. Chemo told her the other day, that another patient he has currently in the same trial as my Mom is going into his fourth year on the program.
- This is really encouraging.
- Next week, Mea is being moved up to the advanced class in gymnastics.
- She is soooooo excited.
- We bought her a practice mat for her birthday.
- My parents bought her a practice beam.
- At least now when she is flipping around the house she won’t be landing only on our hardwood floors.
- Cushion is good.
This is it. Don’t forget about the Joseph Nogucci giveaway!