Done.

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.

 

 


Fat Guy, Fatter Suit

I have worked with many different people over the years.

There are some, that for better or for worse stick with you.

“Jeff” is one that will always annoy the hell out of me, even eight years later when I should be over it.  He was supposed to be a professional.  He was supposed to be out drumming up business for me.  I could never take this guy seriously.

For the longest time I just couldn’t quite put my finger on it.

Then I realized.

All of his suits were too big.

But at the same time, they also seemed too small.

He was a biggish guy, not overly built, but kind of chubby, so I think that many of us thought that he had lost a lot of weight before he came to work for us, and that was why his suits didn’t fit, and you know he didn’t have enough money to get them all altered.

But then there was that part where some of them looked too small.

Not too small in the waist line.  Too small in the length.  The waist line was so big that often his belt would be doubled over the fabric, and make the waistband all bunchy.  Like when we would wear my Dad’s pants and pretend to be hobos when we were little.

His pants were also always a little bit too short.  Some suits were worse than others, but there was always quite a bit of sock showing. It probably didn’t help that he occasionally wore black sweat socks with his suits.

So then the day came and he was gone.

I was not sad, as I said there was always something about him that just seemed a little bit not quite right.

Years later, I was talking to an ex-co-worker about him and this is the story that came out.

It turns out that “Jeff” was in panic mode when he got hired on with the old company, and only owned one suit.

He had this friend, who sold him all the suits that didn’t fit him anymore.

His friend was as wide as he was tall apparently. 

Which explains why Jeff’s pants were always too short, and too big around in the middle, and why his jackets looked like he was hauling an extra body around with him.

 


Rattling Around

Believe it or not, I have come to this place many times in the last several weeks.  I just couldn’t make any words come out when I would sit down.   

I have a little green notebook in my purse where I have been jotting down ideas of things to blog about.

Whether it is some silly Meaism, or a story from my past, or something that has happened recently, those ideas have gone in this little notebook.

The thing is when I get here, and sign in, I kind of freeze, and no matter how many times I look at the pages of notes I have made in the little green notebook, I can’t pull the words together to form even one sentence.

Today, I opened the notebook, and then picked it back up and buried it back into the bottom of my purse.

I miss it here.  I miss you friends out there so much.  I hope you are still there.  I hope you haven’t given up on me.

I won’t lie, this year has been a hard one.  Most likely the hardest in all of my life.  First my Mom getting sick, my old job, new job, Mack moving so very far away, I just haven’t dealt with it all too well.  I am trying, but I am also trying not to get too lost. 

I was just rattling around doing the best at I could at functioning for a while.  The things I loved to do took a back seat while I tried to pull myself back together.  I haven’t read an entire book in more than six months.  I have bought several, started and stopped them.  My cooking and baking has taking a hiatus, which has had a positive effect on all of our waistlines, but still.  My blog and my blog peeps.

The thing is, that this blog is my best therapy.  I have to tell myself that you guys don’t necessarily need a funny, jokey story where I make fun of myself, every single time you come here.  Sadly, sometimes I just need to be me and vent my bad shit out so I can go on.

I think this is where I am.  I need to get some of the bad out, so the good can come back in. 

Even if it’s something short, I will be back daily for a while.  I need to get back in the groove of things. 

Little Green Book

Little Green Book

I may need to start things off by getting rid of this.  It hasn’t done me any favors.  I may go bury it in the backyard when I get home.


The Bag Lady

I first noticed her a little over ten years ago.  She would come into my office, dragging two large heavy plastic reusable grocery bags, from a discount grocery store.  They were packed to the limit. 

Where I worked, it was common for us to serve clients who were quite well off, and also serve clients who could barely rub two nickels together.  I could never quite figure out The Bag Lady’s circumstances.  She looked clean, she looked kept, but she had those bags, and seemingly, nowhere to go.

I saw her everywhere.

On every single side of town. 

She rode the bus, so I did see her frequently while I was at work.  At least several times per week.

Always with those two stuffed bags.

She was older, definitely should have been retired.  Frail enough that watching her carry those bags always concerned me, they looked so heavy.

I often wondered what she had in there.  I would find myself thinking about it at odd times.  If she were homeless, she might have all of her earthly possessions in those bags.  What if someone stole them from her?  What if she lost one?  What if one of them ripped and she started losing things?

She went missing for a while.  I didn’t see her.  This was over winter, so then I really began wondering if she was one of the homeless as so many of them head south for winter.

Then when the weather started warming up I began to see her again. 

Back with her bags.

Only this time they had multiplied. 

The first time I saw her she had four bags.

Then at least six.

Then she was walking around with at least ten or more of these bags filled to the brim, so heavy she could barely carry them herself.  She would walk two to four bags about twenty feet or so, then go back and get more bags, over and over and over again.

I couldn’t imagine how long it was taking her to get to wherever it was that she needed to be while carrying all of those bags.

Then one day, I realized she was gone.  I hadn’t seen her for months. More than a few seasons had passed.

She was gone.

So were her bags.

 

I am still here.  I will be back in this place.  I have been dragging around a bunch of baggage.  My brain has been so heavy it’s been hard to put all of my stuff away, and walk away without any of my bags, but please know this…..

I miss you.  I miss this space and the cheap therapy it gives me.  I miss making people laugh,  I miss reading your stories.   

I don’t know what happened to the bag lady.  I hope that some family member intervened and either got her some mental help that she may have needed, or helped her into an assisted living facility of some sort who could also help her. 

 


Dead Man’s Float

When I was younger, I was a swimmer.  I took private lessons from the time I was an infant, and my Mom could drag me to the pool.  Both of my parents were extremely anxious around water, my Dad couldn’t swim, and my Mom really just didn’t like to.  My Mom has a cousin who died at two years of age in a pool.  She was quite passionate about my sister and I being good swimmers.

I took to the water.  I loved it.

I had a swimming instructor who taught me to do a dead man’s float.  Along with treading water, this was a strength and conditioning type thing he made me do periodically.  I have asthma, so making sure I was taking time to breathe was an important part of our training.

Lately, I feel like this.  Like I am just floating along on the water.  Arms splayed out, taking a deep breath when I can, or when I have to, and then just going back into the float.

Arms and legs splayed out.  Taking in air when I have to.

Just floating along.

I sort of feel over-whelmed, and under-whelmed at the same time.  I just can’t quite get out of this funk.  I am worried that it is here to stay, and that I can’t get my happy back.

I am not finding joy in many things lately.

I know that I need to snap out of it, and I know that I will.  I just feel a bit like I am drowning instead of pulling my head out of the water to take that deep breath of air that I need.

I miss my friends in my computer.

I miss writing.

I miss my daughter.

Having Mack so far away, is so hard.  I have never gone this long without a hug from my big girl.  Even when she was a Yellow State, I still saw her at least once a month.  It’s been five weeks since she left.

I miss my Mom.  (I know she is still here, I just miss the way she used to be.  Seeing her sick is hard.  One of the worst things I have ever had to deal with.  I fucking hate it.)

I miss being close with my sister.

I miss going to work and loving what I was doing, and being excited to be there.

I need to make some changes, but I need to also get the courage to make those changes.  I need to be able to think things through, and start slow.

I know that I cannot keep on floating along like this.

The Dead Man’s Float is a survival tool, it is not intended to be used forever.

 


In The Shop

My Super Mom cape is in need of a major tune up.

My candle has been burning at both ends for the last several weeks.  Trying to get used to my old routine, has been in a word. Difficult.

There is just so much stuff going on.

New job, learning all the new things that I need to do to make my work life work.

Getting these people who live here with me adjusted not only to me working again, but to also not be able to reach me at a moments notice, or for me to just be able to leave the office to tend to things whenever they arise has been hard on them and me.

In some ways it has been good for my husband to see all that I really did around here.  The cooking, the cleaning, the laundry, all the various appointments and things I did for him and for Mea without anyone realizing they were done.  I think he might appreciate me a little more than he used to.

A good example that came up a couple of weeks ago was that we had to get Mea into the only Saturday class for gymnastics.  There is only one class in her age group and level on Saturday.  There is only room for eight girls in the class.

He had to stand in line for two and a half hours to make sure she got into the class.  This is something I would have normally just done, but since I cannot have any time off in the next sixty days, ,much of this is being passed on to him.

He has taken much of it pretty well.

Mea is not liking that I am working again.

After all the bitching and complaining she did about missing daycare, and her friends, she is equally annoyed to have to get up in the morning, and mad that dinner is now such a late event.  Not getting off work until six means we are lucky if we get to eat at 7.

I have been attempting, especially with the first day of school coming up so quickly, (AUGUST 22nd!  That is in twelve days!), to find quick and easy dinners that I can have ready to just heat up, or that comes together quickly so my husband can start it whenever he gets home.  Any super fast yummy recipes for dinner would be appreciated.

Mack moved back in with us temporarily. With all her crap. And her cat.  There is stuff everywhere in this house.  There is no escaping the mess.  There is stuff in the basement, stuff in the back porch, stuff in the garage.  I have been doing my best to keep crap from piling up in the living room and kitchen, but every now and then some of her stuff starts overflowing into my space. The fact that Mack is here and is moving is also not helping in my Mea’s attitude problem.  She is not adjusting well to the thought of Mack leaving for Ohio.

They leave next Friday.

It is bittersweet.

It has also been so convoluted.  The original plan was for her to drive a U-Haul, and tow her car behind. Of course, her car decided to act up.  Now we are attempting to sell her car, and they will take the boyfriend’s car instead.  His mother has had many opinions about how they should move.  It has changed eleventy billion times since they first found out they were moving there.  She doesn’t want either of them to drive the U-Haul.  She wanted to rent a trailer type U-Haul, and pull it with her truck.  But then she didn’t want to drive back to our city by herself.  She doesn’t want them to tow the car.  She doesn’t want them to do anything that makes any sense.

They are adults.  She is 21, and he is 23, they are the ones moving.  It is all up to them as to how they get there, and what stuff they are taking and how.

Mack finally put her foot down last week.  Said they were renting the U-Haul, she was going to drive it, her boyfriend could either drive his car behind her, or they would tow it.  No one is driving with them, they are going by themselves.

Such a mess.

We are having a BBQ tomorrow, to get everyone together before they leave.  Sounds like we should have a pretty good turn-out.  I am just praying for no drama, and a nice afternoon.  I will finally meet the boyfriend’s Mom tomorrow at the BBQ.  It’s been two and a half years of them dating, and I haven’t even met the woman.

The other things will all end up okay.  We will get back into a regular routine once Mack is moved, and settled in.  Once school starts and we have a schedule set in stone.

I just need to be patient until we get there.

You may already have realized this if you have been around for a few years, but I tend to be a little bit of a control freak.

Right now, I feel like I do not have control of anything.

Things just seem to be happening, and I react to them as they come.

I guess it is all I can do, but at the same time, it’s not really how I roll most of the time.


Like a Hippo Wearing Heels

I have mentioned before that I am not graceful.

At all.

If there were awards for being a royal klutz I would win.  Hands down.

I mentioned before that I have quite a walk from the employee parking lot to my actual building.  It is free, and I am cheap, so this makes me happy.  I really don’t mind, and it seems like the path to work is, for the most part, hazard free.  No cracks in the sidewalk, currently no construction, etc.

When I started the old job, I also did not mind the walk.  However, I did mind paying to park in a parking lot that was owned by our company.  Forty dollars a month to park, because they chose to lease the lot to a company who manages parking lots.  Kind of a rip off.  Always rubbed me the wrong way.  I understand them wanting to lease it, but they should have still allowed our employees to park for free.

Anyway.

The walk to work there was not obstacle free.  I had to cross a set of railroad tracks.  I do now, however there is a flat area to walk across where you are not actually walking over the railroad ties and raised tracks.  There were weeds, and sticky bushes that would reach out and snag my pants, skirts and stockings.  Perpetual construction.  The world’s most broken jagged sidewalk right in front of the Court House.

You could always count on there being someone standing on the corner by the Court House staring up at the jail.  Sidewalk chalk messages written to inmates.  Inmates screaming from the widows above down to their loved ones on the corner.

Real classy stuff.

I would usually try to hurry along when I was on the stretch of sidewalk in front of the Court House.  Less likely to get caught in a screaming match from the jail, less likely to get caught doing the weird you go this way, I do that way dance on the sidewalk.

The sidewalk in front of the Court House is almost always broken in some way shape or form.  I have never really understood it, but it is seriously one of the worst stretches of sidewalk anywhere.

Which is probably why I ended up face-down on the sidewalk on more than one occasion.

Caught my shoe on a jagged piece of cement, and down she goes.

Most times, I could catch myself.

More often than not actually.

You would think that after the first few times, I would have started wearing sneakers into the building, but I was too stubborn to do the whole switching shoes business.

The last time I fell, I tripped, just flew forward all in the momentum of my power walk, skinned both knees, ruined my pantyhose, ripped my skirt, and spilled a 20 oz to go cup of coffee all over my white shirt.

There was a round of applause from the open jail windows.  I don’t remember, but it is quite possible that I may have had another dress up day incident.

I transferred to a new office shortly after that.