Thursday, December 30, 2010

Time Flies When You're.......Well, Time Just Flies

I apologize, gentle readers for the rather serious gap since I last posted.

I have found myself in something of a slump yet again and am having a difficult time pulling myself out of it. I blame it on the Holidays.

I love the Holiday season. Good food. Family. Friends. Celebrations. But, yet again this year, my FSS (Former Supposed Spouse) is absent from us. And, even though the general consensus is that we (myself and my children) are better off without him, I still found myself missing him terribly. I did my best to occupy my time and my thoughts. And for the most part, was successful. I have for several years done baking for other people - the fancy little pain-in-the-ass Norwegian treats that no one wants to mess with anymore - lefse, fattigmand, sandbakkles, krumkakke, and rosettes - and I seem to be quite talented at candy making so I make fudge and glazed nuts and peanut brittle and divinity. And real gingerbread men with royal icing. And rolled out sugar cookies and lots and lots of other favorites from my childhood that only got made at Christmas time. And those activities kept me busy from about Thanksgiving until the day before Christmas. And for a few days now I've been plunking away at my new website -

But now the hustle and bustle have died down a bit. The quiet is settling in again. My oldest son went to Helena to spend a week with his dad. So, it's just me and Bug. And here comes New Years. And who am I going to kiss at midnight?

The FSS's aunt died the Monday before Christmas. Almost 30 years to the day that her husband proposed to her. I had the privilege of knowing her. She was a lovely woman. Generous and kind. And she will be missed.  She lived in Utah, but I find myself being the one to organize the posting of the obituary in our local paper. And comfort my former supposed mother-in-law. And that's okay. It gives me something to focus on besides my lonesome, lost, self-pitying self.

2011 has got to be better.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Strange Days

Today has really been an odd mix of emotions. Happy, sassy, sad, nostalgic, guilty. Ended up with a little bit unsettled.

Last night I went to a 40th birthday party for a girl I graduated high school with. And I wore my "sassy girl" shoes...

And danced my feet off, and had a blast. It was like a mini-reunion of the D.E.C.A. Club! I missed the 20th high school reunion so it was absolutely awesome to see all these girls again.

Then I think I spent a little too long on Facebook. I happened upon a page that one of my classmates put up as a memorial to all the classmates who are no longer with us on this Earth. One in particular made me cry.

He and I were never friends. In fact, just the opposite. There were only harsh words between us. One night I got so angry that I said something particularly evil. And when he died our sophomore year, I felt tremendously guilty for having said it.

I went to his funeral. I seem to remember that the school gave anyone who wanted to go permission to miss classes. I think that the halls of HHS were probably deserted that day. I was sitting in the church that was packed to the rafters. Some days later, one of his best friends who knew the whole story, who had also chased me and my friends through the streets of our hometown, heard JR and I call each other every name in the book and who heard the very last thing I ever said to JR before he died - told me that my being there was one of the coolest things he'd ever seen.


How do I make amends to those people I have harmed that are no longer on this Earth? It's taken me a while but I have learned that once hateful words are spoken, you CANNOT take them back. Once the damage is inflicted, the wound might heal but the scar will always be there. The only way to "fix" it is to not say it in the first place. All I can do is do better than I have in the past and live my life in a way that reflects that.

Living amends, my sponsor calls them. So, JR, if you are up there listening, I'm sorry for what I said to you that night so long ago. I've never said those words to anyone else since. Know that the people who knew you well and loved you still think about you often.

My Higher Power has been bringing many things and people back into my consciousness these days. I have an amends on my list that I did not think I would ever be able to make. And when I saw his name, I sent a friend request and a message. I told him that if he didn't respond, it was okay. I could understand why he wouldn't. But that I owe him some amends if he was willing to listen.

That friend request was accepted today. And that's a bit unsettling. I've been thinking about what I want to say. What I need to say. And how the HELL can I possibly say ANYTHING that would matter or that he would care to hear.

I will be consulting my sponsor on this one. And my Higher Power. I know that if I ask for His guidance, the words will come. What the person does with them is out of my control.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Interesting.......and a little unsettling..

I was looking though my page view stats for the week and found a couple of interesting things.

11 page views came from Pakistan. 3 from India. A couple from Slovenia. Most were from the US and Canada which I expected, and the few from the UK and the rest of Europe, okay, maybe. I know some of my Facebook peeps are there.

Pakistan? India? Really? Interesting.

I guess I'm global. And I'm not sure how I feel about that. Duh. It is called the WORLD WIDE WEB after all.

Shoes Always Fit

My FSS always was cussing about the number of pairs of shoes I have in my closet.

Part of this is a guy thing - they just don't get the need for more than one pair for work, one pair for fun and one pair for funerals.

And I'm not saying that I require one pair of shoes for every outfit....although, my collection IS dangerously close to that.....but a person needs options! I like my flats, I like my slip-on tennies, I LOVE my fuzzy Crocs (even though I had vowed at one point to never own a pair of Crocs, I got a pair last year for Christmas and I LOVE THEM!!) I like my heels when I'm feeling sassy and know I don't have to spend a really long time on my feet because let's face it - fashion can be painful. I have, however, found a solution for the high-heel=pain problem... WEDGES!! At last a shoe that makes me feel tall, and sexy and doesn't hurt my feet. (My knees give out long before my feet do.)

But for me, shoes are about more than just fashion. I have an addictive personality, so, when I find things that make me feel good, I have a predisposition to go a little overboard. Doesn't really matter what it is - food, drugs, booze, men, clothes.....and shoes. And here's why......

I'm also a person who struggles with her weight - up, down, up, down, UP, down - all my life. So, when I turn to food to make me feel better, it just makes me fatter. And all the clothes that once made me feel good, no longer fit and I have to go back downstairs and pull out the fat girl wardrobe.

Drugs and booze have made my life spin out of control in ways too numerous to recount here. But if you've been following along, you get the idea.

Men only break my heart. And generally when that happens, it sets in motion the whole food-fat girl-booze-drugs mess all over again.


Shoes always fit. Through all the men, through all the ups and downs of my weight, throughout my struggles with the feet (and my shoe size) have always remained the same. (Not so much through the pregnancies, but that's to be expected!)

So, my shoes always fit. The simple act of slipping on a particular pair of shoes makes me feel better. There are memories attached to each pair of shoes. The copper slip-ons with the medium wedge I bought for $5 and wore to the interview that landed me my job. The black Bear Traps ballet slippers I bought of the clearance rack at work because the shoes I had on that day just weren't going to be possible all day long! The Aerosoles that I bought in two colors because I was working two jobs and was on my feet sometimes 18 hours a day.

Wedding shoes, funeral shoes, red shoes, sparkly shoes, heels, flats - even a pair of come-fuck-me boots. (Might have to wear those this Friday!)

So please guys - don't ask us to part with our shoes willy nilly. It's not just about the shoes. It's a part of who we are!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Terminal Uniqueness & Some Promises

Most people who know me, or who have been paying any attention at all over the last few months, already know this, but in case you just joined the party or have been blissfully unaware.....

My name is Lana and I am an alcoholic. And like lots of other alcoholics, I suffer from "terminal uniqueness." That's the notion that no one else in the world is going through the same things I am. No one else in the world has my unique set of circumstances to deal with and that's why I have lots of good reasons why I should be allowed to remain stuck in my self-pity and complacency.

The reality is that EVERYONE - alcoholic or not, sober or not - has that EXACT same thought. When I am sitting in a meeting, there is NOTHING unique about me. I'm just another drunk trying to not be a drunk anymore and hangin' on like HELL to the idea that if I do what is suggested, there really IS a better life.

One of my favorite passages in my Big Book are The Promises. I remember the very first time I heard them, which meeting I was in, and who read them. It was the same meeting that I "came out" of the alcoholic closet. (Thanks Elena. I will never forget you.)

"If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are half-way through. We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness. We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace. No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others. That feeling of uselessness and self-pity will disappear. We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows. Self seeking will slip away. Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change. Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us. We will instinctively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us. We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.

Are these extravagant promises? We think not. They are being fulfilled among us - sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. They will always materialize if we work for them."
(Alcoholics Anonymous, p 83-84)

There's a couple of biggies in there for me.

"We will not regret the past, nor wish to shut the door on it." I have a truckload of shit that is regrettable. And I lived for a long time mired down in that regret and sorrow. And when you add those two things together - regret and sorrow - you get self-pity. And that provides countless excuses to stay sick.

"No matter how far down the scale we have gone..." I used to think that my only problem with alcohol was the OTHER PEOPLE in my life who drank. And I was REALLY good at surrounding myself with people who drank way more than I did. That way I could say things like "Well, I don't drink everyday, so I'm not an alcoholic." Or, "I've never got so drunk I've blacked out." Or "I've never been arrested." Or I don't even have ONE D.U.I. let alone ELEVEN." SO I AM NOT AN ALCOHOLIC!!!! I just have lousy taste in spouse type people.

Well. Hmmm. Now I realize that none of those things are required for membership in the drunk club. In fact the ONLY requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. (And I tried to do it myself and found I could not. People were complaining. "Jesus Christ! Have a drink already and calm the FUCK down.") And, incidentally, most of those "milestones" that I was sooooo proud I had not achieved? Yeah, they've all happened over the last couple years. The only one I don't have is the D.U.I. And that is ONLY by the Grace of a God whose power and love I cannot begin to understand. And it's one I can live without! (The D.U.I. I can live without, not the Grace and Love.)

"God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves." And God is definitely working in my life these days. It is a bit unsettling how many names there are that are on both my 4th Step Inventory and my Facebook Friends list. My sponsor - an awesome lady - tells me that's God bringing my "wreckage" back into my consciousness so that I can clear it away.

"If we work for them." And I guess that's the point of the whole Blog exercise. This is me, working for my Promises, telling the world what is was like, what happened, and what it's like now.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Middle of the Night Sleep Deprived Ramblings...

It's the middle of the night and I was well on my way to being fully asleep until my stupid dog decided she had to go outside RIGHT NOW!! Now I'm wide awake again and my feet are cold again. They were cold earlier - even my super thick Columbia socks weren't doing the job - but when I crawled into bed and pulled the extra blanket on, they finally warmed up. I don't know about anybody else but if my feet are cold, I'm cold all over.

And I hate being cold because it makes me hurt all over - muscles, joints, all the way down to my bones until I just want to curl up in a ball and cry. Montana is definitely not the right climate to be in with a chronic pain disorder. When it's warmer, I do so much better. Sigh. Maybe someday I'll be able to move to Mexico for the coldest part of the year like a friend of mine did. But, not anytime soon.

Guess I will have to just double up the socks, drag out the long undies, and pile on the extra blankets.

Monday, November 8, 2010

This Time of Year

I love Thanksgiving. I have so many good memories of family dinners. My dad comes from a family of ten kids so when we have family dinners, we have family dinners!

I remember one year my Grandma was having 21 people for dinner and only had ONE can of black olives. My cousin Jon took 10 of them (one for each finger) and had eaten half of them before anyone noticed.

I cooked Thanksgiving dinner for the Drunk Dialer and his dad and brother in a TINY one bedroom apartment with an oven about half the regulation size. (Yeah, I'm just that good!!)

There seems to be a lot of things triggering walks down memory lane lately. Most of them are things long forgotten. But good things. Bittersweet things about people who are no longer with me on this Earth. And funny things like the very first time I ever met my Former Supposed Spouse.

At Cocktails. (Some of you might remember Cocktails. Some of you might remember it as The Padded Cell. Or Shamrocks. Or the Havre Daily Lounge. Or maybe even all of the above. I remember Cocktails (and it's owner) quite fondly.) Anyway, on a Saturday afternoon, with a good buzz on both of us, the FSS looks me up and down and wants to know can he see my tits. So very charming, right?

What would have been our 7th "anniversary" is coming up on the 30th of this month. I have a lot of anger towards him right now. But there are lots of good memories too.

I'm not sure what's up with all the trips down memory lane. I'm going with the idea that it's because I'm turning 40 in ten days. And I'm sober. And I've rebuilt my faith in a Power Greater Than Myself. And I think that Higher Power is bringing things into my consciousness to show me where the wreckage is that needs to be cleared away.

It's like a "spoonful of sugar" thing. The good memories make the bad ones easier to take.

Just a Quick Update....

I know you're all waiting with baited breath to know whether or I not I pushed the button....

Yes. I did. And we had a nice chat.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A Need To Purge The Memory(ies) - Good, Bad, Horrific, and Otherwise

As promised M, here's the back story on the Drunk Dialer.

A little background on me, first, I think. I was something of a late bloomer when it came to boys. First kiss was at 15, first REAL kiss was the summer before my Senior year and was a bit confusing. (Yes, there's a back story there, too, but that's one for another day. And no, it wasn't a girl, so keep your minds out of the gutter!! lol) I also lost my virginity the summer before my Senior year. It was literally with "the boy next door." Okay, the boy across the street and down a few houses. And yeah, he was the football star, and in the band, and choir and drama and and and ...... and I remember being so amazed that he "liked" me too. And, of course, there were complications. He was dating someone else. And one of my best good friends had a GINORMOUS crush on him. (LK from the bottom of my heart, I am so very sorry I did that to you. I wouldn't have done that to one of my girlfriends and so I don't know why I didn't know it wasn't okay to do that to you. This one falls in the horrific category.)

And so, immediately afterwards, I was branded a slut. And I guess I spent the next several years doing my damnedest to live up to that label. I think I accomplished that and then some. But, I digress.

The first time I set eyes upon my Drunk Dialer (DD), he was moving out of his house and divorcing his wife. The only reason I was there was because I was chasing after one of the guys (also married) that was helping D.D. move out. No idea who he was, didn't care, but I was a girl and I was there and someone identified me and so that was really all the psycho ex-wife needed to know to decide that I was REALLY after D.D.

A couple of weeks later, we were all at the Corner Bar and I noticed the D.D. noticing me. And he was kinda cute, in a goofy sort of way - tall, skinny, MaGoo glasses - but he had a great smile and a nice laugh and every muscle on him was rock hard. And we flirted a little. But I got run out of the bar by the one ass hole in the bar who gave a crap that I wasn't 21. And that was that.

Until one night a few weeks later. I'm out cruising (an activity that apparently no one engages in anymore - sad really. So many good times!!) and he's out cruising and we pass each other a few times and I wave and smile a few times and then he stops. And when I drove by again, he waved me over to stop and talk. And I did. And then we cruised together for a while and then......the psycho ex-wife spotted us together. And chased us and tried to run us off the road and ended up running her own car into the ditch.

Yeah. That should have been the only clue I needed to RUN in the OPPOSITE direction.

But no. Tell me I can't have something and I just want it all the more.

So we kept seeing each other. Kept sneakin' around. We spent many a hot summer night in the little attic room he had at his buddy's house. And by that fall we were living together. And I was head over heels in love with him. We both made promises that we ended up not keeping. And the psycho bitch made life a living hell for me.

Was it worth it? I don't know. I know he was my first TRUE, REAL, DEEP love and that never really goes away. I know I'm not the scared little girl I was 20 years ago. I know I've been through 20 years of crazy shit and that changes a person. I'm sober. And THAT is definitely different. I know I'm all stocked up on crazy these days and don't really need anymore. What good would it do to go back there? I think it would just fan the flames of the fire I'm already going down in.

Even still. Here I sit with my phone open, his number on the screen. All I need to do is push talk.

Drunk Dialer Dillema

The drunk dialer has his very own ring so I know it's him even before I look at the caller ID.

Do I answer it? Or do I let it ring and let him think I'm sleeping?

There's history there. We know each other. Very well. We lived together for a while And it would be nice to have someone to snuggle up to for a while. But that's just it, I think. It's only for a while. He's never going to be a part of my life they way I want someone to be. People keep telling me, "You can't go back again."

But really? We tried to once and I screwed it up. And when I tried to patch things up and pick up where we left off, he turned me down. And I was pissed about that. But now I realize that I needed some time by myself to figure out what I want and what I need.

And probably what I need is not a "drunk dialer" who only calls in the middle of the night when he's lonely and horny. But, like I said. We know each other. It's easy. It's familiar. It's good. And he does love to snuggle.

Friday, October 15, 2010

If Only....

If only the kids would go to bed so that I could.

If only I could afford a maid.

If only I could afford my rent.

If only I could afford ANYTHING!

If only I had my washer and dryer on the main floor instead of in the basement.

If only my former supposed spouse (FSS) hadn't been arrested for his 11th DUI. (Yep, that's right. ELEVEN!!)

If only the other jack-ass that I was married to before would dro..... no wait, better not say it 'cuz then he will just because I said it.

If only the other jack-ass that I was married to before wasn't such a jack-ass.

If only I was gettin' some on a regular basis....yeah, I know, too much information. But it really does do wonders for my mood. For a minute.

If only there was such a person as Prince Charming, or McDreamy, or a Knight In Shining Armour.

If only I didn't wish there was such a person as ..... all of the above.

If only.

That's a lot of  'If only's.' Probably too many.

I also have a lot of blessings in my life.  For example, I am no longer married to Jack-Ass #1 or the FSS. (One of these days, I'll explain why I call him the Former Supposed Spouse.) And I am free to 'get some' whenever I want. (Shhh...don't tell my sponsor! I'm not done with my steps yet!) And I'm not giving up the notion that I will find my own McDreamy (or McSteamy, either one will work). Prince Charming and Mr. Knight? Well, not so much. They all start out that way, but they all end up only human in the end. Hmmmm. Maybe I should START with that notion in the first place.

It's early still and the kids will go to sleep. Eventually. (I add the eventually because an enormous THUD just emanated from their room. So they are UP TO SOMETHING but no one is crying so I guess all is well.)

And, at least I HAVE a washer and dryer and don't have to schlep laundry to the laundromat. Yeah, that's not a fun way to spend a Saturday. Or a Sunday. Or any other day for that matter. I rather enjoy being able to throw in a load at 2 in the morning if I want to. (I doubt my roommate appreciates it since he sleeps right next to the laundry room, but he's a big dork anyway. Besides, he knew I was a psycho night-owl when he moved in here. AND, he took off for Minnesota for who knows how long, didn't tell me, didn't pay any rent for this month and left his psycho cat that hates me here.)

So what's my point. I'm sure I had one. Once.

Oh yeah. I may have a lot of things that could be better. But I also have an awful lot that could be much, MUCH worse. Yeah, there's that fuckin' gratitude again!! And just when I was REALLY starting to enjoy feeling sorry for myself, dammit!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Common Courtesy & The Fridge Fiasco

Common courtesy it seems has gone the way of common sense.

Case in point, the great refrigerator fiasco of 2010.

My best friend recently lost a refrigerator to an untimely demise. (That's another rant for another day - the fact that things are not made the way they used to be.)

So, $650 to replace the condenser that "shit the bed." Or $800 for a sparkly, shiny, brandy new one. Hmmmm. Might as well be $8 million as her pocket doesn't even contain $8 let alone $800. So The Friends come up with a plan to get her one to get her by. For $100 bucks. Again, might as well be, yadda yadda yadda - same story as above.

No one's using it, you might as well.

Nope, don't need to measure it, it's a cubic foot smaller than yours was, it'll fit. And it's been sitting around for a while and it's a little dirty but don't worry. I'll clean it before we bring it to you.

Well, The Friends didn't get a chance to clean it. And just how LONG it had been sitting around is anybody's guess. And whomever had emptied it didn't bother to clean it out, either. So, along with the extra 10 pounds of construction debris coating the outside, the inside was covered with soy sauce, dried blood, and the remains of rotting vegetables. Just lovely!!

And it's about 1/4" too tall. (NO, we don't need no stinkin' measurements!!) So, now it sticks out about 3 feet from where it's supposed to. Not to mention the gigantic scratch in the brand new hardwood floor. (Only a week old, by the way.)

Really? Who does that? I mean, bless their little hearts for wanting to help. But who brings a fridge (or anything else for that matter) to someone's house without, at the very least, dusting off the inch of dust on the outside? Or, after finding out the inside was disgusting as well, saying "I know it's dirty. Let me help you clean it out."

Common courtesy, and common sense for that matter, dictates to me that these things should be done.

I told her not to worry about the fact that it sticks out 3 feet from the wall. That will make it super easy to retrieve anything that falls behind it. And, when it comes time to clean the coils on the back again, you can drag the entire vacuum cleaner back there with you.

Oh yeah, and the frosting on this entire cupcake? No one had actually plugged the monstrosity in to make sure it actually worked. Yeah. Perfect. (I am happy to report that even though it took a while, it did finally get cold and my friend is no longer living out of coolers.)

And The Fridge Fiasco was just one more thing on top of a heap of crap that "shit the bed" for my friend last week. Just one more thing to make it a really super-duper sucky dog-licking-ass-face week.

So, tonight when you are thanking your God for all your blessings, be especially glad that your fridge is nice and cold and purring along quietly, that all the electric windows in your car work properly, you don't have piles of homework or laundry, or a sick baby, or a teenager with a bad attitude.

And if you do - or if you've been there - say a little prayer for my friend. Ask God to lift her up and help her trudge through all this crap. Ask Him to remind her that it's all temporary - that it will all be okay in the end.

And if you don't have all those things I mentioned a couple paragraphs ago, or if you haven't been there, thank your God for all your blessings.

Love-Hate Relationship With Politicians

I simultaneously admire and despise politicians.

I admire them because it's a job I would NEVER want to do. It seems to me to be quite thankless. Someone is always unhappy with you no matter what you do or say. And God help you if you actually had a life before you got into politics because someone, somewhere is gonna have pictures, or video, or audio or proof of some sort of the (perhaps) one time there was a lapse in your otherwise good judgement and it ruins you AND ruins your family.

And I despise them because it seems that at their core, they are all completely full of total complete and unadulterated bullshit!! They will say anything to get as many votes as they can. They will say anything about the other so that they themselves appear squeaky clean in comparison. And some of them you just know are not. And, in Great Falls it seems, they will even stoop to stealing each others' campaign signs out of yards.

All in all, they seem to be a bunch of lying, cheating, back-stabbing, dirty-tricks-playing dimwits.

And any of them that do have the slightest bit of idealism (and by that I mean a basic belief that real change is really possible) arrive in Washington D.C. (even the White House, for that matter) and have it promptly stomped out of them because in order to get anything done, you have to get to be part of the "old boy" network that 1) broke us in the first place and 2) can't seem to fix a damn thing.

I have been told that if you don't vote, you don't have the right to complain. So, rest assured gentle readers, I will be voting even though Montana has no national candidates. Even if it's just for the right to bitch about politicians, I will be voting.

I believe that change begins locally and spreads globally. So even though I'm only voting for local and state officials, I will choose my vote carefully and thoughtfully, not ONLY because I believe in the same things as my candidate, but also because I believe the person I choose is capable of doing the thankless job that requires them to live in a fishbowl with everyone and their brother continually bitching about all the things they are doing wrong.


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Where The Hell's the Bottom??

I feel like I'm in a hole that I can't get out of. And, the harder I try, the deeper it gets.

I have no motivation. I have a long list of things that need to get done. My house is a disaster. There's a mountain of laundry. The passenger side of my bed is covered with ...... well just a bunch of stuff. My clean clothes, kids' clean clothes, books, junk mail, notebooks, pens - if I had a laptop, that's where it would be....lately it seems I live in my bedroom.

And I used to like to be in my bedroom. It was my sanctuary. Now, it's starting to feel more like a sanatorium than sanctuary.

I've had this illness that started out as a head cold, morphed into bronchitis, and now has become something that just won't go away. I have no appetite, not that that's such a bad thing as I have no energy to cook anything anyway. If I do try to eat, I either feel sick or it won't stay with me very long. And I'm really kind of tired of it. My roommate says he was over his in about 4 days because he just "refused to admit he was sick." I don't even have the energy to do that.

Have you ever had that feeling like you know you're gonna fuck up, and you can see yourself while you are fucking up, but feel powerless to stop it?? Yeah. That's where I'm at.

In a hole, that I can't get out of, and the harder I try and the harder I cry, the deeper the bottom becomes and the steeper the sides get. Like the chick at the end of "Drag Me to Hell" when she's trying to climb up out of the old nasty gypsy woman's grave.

I hope I get over this funk soon.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Delighting in the Dynamic

My "Message from God" for today (actually a few days back, but anyway..):

"On this day God wants you to know...that you've been missing out on delight God has sent your way. Think back over the last day - what could you have taken with delight that you just skipped over?"

And that bothered me because I don't very often take delight in the good things. I am far to focused on the bad things and have a great tendency to wallow around in the crap.

This not only endangers my precarious-at-best mental health, but also my sobriety because I am supposed to be keeping an "attitude of gratitude."

And I'll tell you - that attitude is damn hard to keep in the face of everything I deal with every day.

I did some bitching in an earlier post about being so horrifically tired. Started last Monday and never really let up until Friday. But even though Monday was bad, the rest of the week I was able to get some rest. Some much needed, much appreciated rest. And I feel bad because the laundry didn't get folded and the dishes didn't get done. But as a result of having rested, I feel kind of almost something approaching good. I was able to take the kiddos to McD's for dinner.

And through the day, really, I felt better. I got to the store and got what I needed to get some things done.

And then actually got those things done.

And that made me feel a little better about myself. And because I felt a little better about myself, every little tiny thing that comes along didn't bother me quite so badly and I wasn't quite as cranky as I usually am.

I even let the kiddos have the toys in their happy meals BEFORE all the nuggets were gone. Usually I sound like a broken record - eat your food eat your food eat your food EAT YOUR FOOD!!!!! But on this night, I was able to put the record player away and just let them be kids. (And they did eat all their nuggets even though they got the toy first!)

Saturday and Sunday were not as good but still pretty okay. And then on Monday we were back to the cranky, tired, bitchy person who feels like crap. I did manage to stay awake all day, though. And the rest of the week was just okay. Sunday sucked the life out of me again. I spent most of the day napping on and off and as a result have not slept. So, if I sound a little nuttier than usual, it's becuase I'm riding a caffeine enduced, sleep deprived roller coaster of free falling thought.

And I've decided that I DO need to take the time to not "skip over" the small things. So, here's a few that I noticed over the weekend....

The leaves. They are mostly turned to varying shades of yellow, gold, orange and red. I love the colors of fall. I did, however, feel a bit sad as it seems like just yesterday the trees had finally all turned green and now, in no time at all, will be bare again.

The length of shadows. The tree on my boulevard only shades the very front part of my lawn during the summer. I noticed yesterday that the shadow now reaches all the way up to my front steps.

The temperature. It varies wildly from day to night. Sometimes even from day to day while Mother Nature tries to decide if it is still summer, or if it is truly autumn.

And as I'm noticing these things, I'm also noticing a theme.

Things change. The weather, the seasons. People.

The nature of the Universe is dynamic, not static. EVERYTHING changes.

And I can either roll with them, or be rolled over by them.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Magical Laundry.....As If!!

I wish my washer and dryer would do the laundry like Kelly Rippa's Electrolux set does.

I want my clothes to magically leap into the baskets and then into the washer. That would be so much better than spending two hours on a scavenger hunt through the house - the hamper, behind the hamper, the bathroom, behind the bathroom door, under the kids' beds, in their toy boxes, behind the couch, tucked in the cushions of the chairs, hanging from the ceiling fan (yes, that actually has happened), even stuffed in the bottom drawer of the their dressers because ..... well I don't know the because, but I'm sure it's a good reason.

And then, after it's all been gathered, it has to be packed down to the basement to the dark, dreary, spidery laundry room.

I swear I don't know how two little boys can generate so much laundry but it seems like I do laundry every single say. And if I don't do laundry at least every other day, by the end of the week, there is a mountain of it and I want to do it even less because now it's a ginormous chore and not just a minor inconvenience.

DOING the laundry isn't so bad, but folding the laundry really sucks. It's tedious. It's time consuming. It's boring. And there are never enough socks to go around. It doesn't matter how carefully I gather the laundry, the socks NEVER match up. There's always an extra one from about 4 different pairs. I think the washer eats them. And the socks have never ever happily folded themselves and jumped neatly right into the drawer. Never, not once.

And have you noticed how easily stains just float away from the clothes in the commercials? No matter what stain remover is being pitched, it is always the BEST, the MOST effective, the FASTEST, the EASIEST to use. Please. Not one of them ever actually WORKS as good as they claim to. The stains are less obvious to be sure, but even the best of them leave just the faintest outline of the stain so you can't really see it anymore but you can never completely forget what happened there.

I do however really like the new Bounce dryer bar. It really IS easy to use and it really DOES work. You stick it and forget it for about 30 days and you don't have to cuss because you forgot to put the dumb sheet in and now your silky, lacy panties are stuck to the outside of your blouse and you didn't notice until you got to work and the cute new guy that works in your department peels them off your back and hands them to you.

Yeah. SUPER way to start the day!!

Sunday, October 3, 2010


There are so many things that make me cranky. Here's just a few of them...

1. Incorrect punctuation/spelling.

To me, there is no better way to reveal your ignorance than by writing an entire paragraph without a lick of punctuation.

weve all seen those posts and stuff that dont have any capital letters no commas no periods no nothing and they run on and on theres no way to know where one sentence ends and the next begins it really makes it difficult to understand what you are trying to say i mean i can understand not having commas where theyre supposed to be who the hell can figure that out anyway i would think though that a person can figure out where to put the period.

I often wonder what Mrs. Margaris would think about texting and Facebook and the tendency to use abbreviations for words. I think it would make her perfectly shaped helmet of hair stand on end.

2. Incorrect usage of homophones (words that sound the same but are spelled differently and have different meanings).

This one almost makes me crankier than the punctuation thing. I see it all the time, everywhere. In the newspaper, in articles on the web, in Facebook posts. And some of these things are being written and edited by people with advanced degrees. Here's a list of just a few. This is a very short list and there are SO MANY MORE I couldn't begin to list them all. Here's a link if you want to know more:

You're - Contraction for "you are"
Your    - possessive pronoun, indicates ownership

     You're stupid.
     Your stupidity is showing again.

They're - Contraction for "they are"
Their    - possessive pronoun, indicates ownership by a group
There   - indicates placement

     They're stupid.
     Their stupidity is showing again.
     Go over there and be stupid.

Accept - to take what is offered
Except  - to exclude something

     Just accept the fact that you are stupid.
     He's cute, except for the fact that he's stupid.

3. Putting empty containers back on the shelf.

If the bag or the box or bottle or whatever container is empty, THROW THE DAMN THING AWAY!! I realize that it's a whole three extra steps to the garbage can, but you people are young. You can handle it.

4. People who drive 20 mph regardless of the posted speed limit and come to a full stop at every corner even if they don't have a stop sign.

I know it's a big scary world and lots of people drive like maniacs. But still. It really is okay to do the speed limit. Maybe even a teeny bit more than the posted speed limit.

5. Emergency Broadcast System Tests.

I completely understand the need for the EBS. But it never fails. The test always comes at some critical point in the show that I am watching. Why can't they ever happen during the commercials??

6. Drinking the last cold pop and not putting any more back in the fridge.

The box is sitting beside the fridge. Take one out of the fridge, put one back in the fridge. It's not rocket science and it won't take but a second.

7. The Weather Channel

Local information used to scroll along the bottom of the screen and it was handy to flip over there to see how warm or cold it was outside. Now, someone in their infinite wisdom, has decided to scroll information for lots of major cities around the country rather than just the town where you are watching. This wouldn't be a problem for me IF I lived in one of the major cities. But I don't. And, I recently stayed overnight in Helena and noticed that THEY still had their local weather at the bottom of the screen. What's up with that?

And this is a very SHORT list. I could write a post a day, twice a day, every day there are that many things that make me cranky these days.

And the older I get, the more things there are that make me cranky. I was just on the phone with my friend Shelli and she reminded me of another one - cars parked in front of the house that are left running with the music blaring. So not only do I have to listen to (and smell) the gigantic diesel pickup running, I also have to hear the bass thumping so hard it rattles my windows!! Yea!!

I remind me more and more of my grandma, Etta Mae. Those of you who went to Flathead High School might remember her - or at least her name. She ran the A La Carte counter in the cafeteria for like, ever - Etta's Corner.

And she was cranky. And loud. And she cussed. And smoked. And hollered at all of us grand kids all the time. (My cousin Laura even named her Harley after her). AND she was one of those 20 mph drivers - 10 if the weather was bad.

BUT - she was also one of the strongest women I have ever known. She raised 10 kids of her own and mothered probably 1000s more. So, maybe she was entitled to be a little cranky. But as much as she hollered, she laughed that much and more. I miss her every day.

So, maybe it's okay for me to be a little cranky too. As long as I keep remembering to find something to laugh about too.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Better Living Through Chemistry

I have a chronic illness - Fibromyalgia. Fibro comes with a whole host of symptoms. Muscle pain, stiffness, fatigue, insomnia, forgetfulness. So most days I feel like I've been run over by a truck while suffering the worst case of flu I've ever had, only I can't remember the truck ran over over me so I wander around trying to figure out why I feel so lousy.

Good times.

There is no cure for fibromyalgia. In fact, there are a lot of doctors who don't really believe that it's even a real illness. So, because there is no cure, the best that Western medicine can do is treat the symptoms with a whole pharmacy of medications.

Muscle pain? Check. Here's a pain pill and some muscle relaxers.

Insomnia? Check. Here's a sleeping pill.

Depression? Check. Here's a happy pill.

Fatigued? Sorry. Can't give you a pill for that. But oh, by the way, all the other medications you take will probably make that worse, so you will just have to find time in your day to rest when you get sleepy.


Did I mention I'm also a single parent with two little boys? One of them is in school all day long and the other goes to half day pre-school four days a week. And I'm the only one there to make sure they're fed, have clean clothes, get up on time, have clean dishes to eat off of, have a home that's reasonably clean, etc., etc., etc.

And it DOES NOT MATTER how long I sleep at night or how much I get to rest during the day. I'm still DOG-ASS tired all day, every day.

And on the days when I do feel pretty okay, I try to do everything that hasn't gotten done and then I pay for it the next three days. And the cycle repeats.

I recently started taking Lyrica which also causes fatigue, dizziness and blurred vision. Oh yeah, and it may cause weight gain. Oh good. I'm a "curvy girl" already. So on top of everything else, now I have to worry about clothes that don't fit and muscle and joints that already hurt are going to be required to work that much harder and hurt that much more.

Sigh. Tears.

I remember a time when I felt normal. Every day now is a struggle to find some kind of balance between rest and getting done what I need to get done.

There are really bad days. Like Monday. I got my older son up and off to school and then went back to sleep until my other son woke up. I got him some breakfast and then went back to sleep for another four hours. And I didn't hear anything until the phone rang at 3:00. It was my mom telling me the school had kept my son off the bus because they thought Grandma was going to pick him up. And in the meantime, I had missed three other calls. And my little guy spent the day playing by himself.

That breaks my heart. And scares the hell out of me.

I really don't know where the humor is to be found. I can laugh sometimes about my scatterbrained-ness. But mostly it's just frustrating and embarrassing.

And I don't know where the positive is either. My faith tells me that God has a purpose for me. But I'll be damned if I can figure out what it is. People keep telling me to be patient, that more will be revealed.

But patience, humor and hope are sometimes in pretty short supply around here these days.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

No Memory, No Life

So. I'm sitting there watching Monday Night Football last week and it hits me.

It's premiere week. (They've only been advertising it for how long now? And I STILL managed to forget?) All the shows that have been in reruns all summer are back with new episodes. AND there are all kinds of new shows on too. So now I have to decide which ones to watch and when.

Thank God for or I would have missed everything.

Monday night, of course, is football. And right off the bat, we have a conflict because Monday night is a meeting night for me. Sorry, 12 & 12 guys, but if Minnesota or Pittsburgh play on Monday night and it's a cake night, someone else is gonna have to bring the cake. And, since "Baby" (Jennifer Grey) is on Dancing With the Stars, I will be flipping back and forth between the dancing and the touchdowns. She has been awesome the last two weeks, just so you know.

Tuesday night brings NCIS because Marc Harmon is really an oh-so-very-sexy older man. And I just love Abby - the Goth Princess slash awesome forensic analyst. If I had my life to do over, that's what I would do. Forensic science. Not as big a fan of NCIS Los Angeles but who doesn't love LL Cool J?? And then it's over to ABC for Detroit 1-8-7 which is basically NYPD Blue only in Detroit. It was okay. But I wonder why bother putting the F-word in the script when you know it's just going to get bleeped?!

Wednesday is a big night. I love, love, L-O-V-E  LOVE The Middle. I am SO Frankie it's not even funny. And Modern Family and Cougar Town crack me up as well. Wednesday gets tricky though, because there is more than one show on at a time that I want to watch. Since I don't have DVR, I have to do some creative scheduling. AND, because I can't remember anything past the end of my nose, I actually have to write it down. From 7 until 9 I'm on ABC for the above mentioned sitcoms. At 9 I'm over to NBC for Law & Order: SVU. On to CBS at 10 for Criminal Minds and then back to ABC at 11 for The Whole Truth. That's a new one with Maura Tierney (previously Abby on ER) and Rob Morrow (previously Fleischman from Northern Exposure).

I am so very glad that we get the Spokane channels here. Otherwise, I might actually have to (GASP) make a decision or something. Or you know, tear myself away from the TV and actually do something resembling constructive. Or something.

That brings us to Thursday. And if I had to pick one night to watch TV, Thursday night would be the one I would pick. And why is that, you ask??

Grey's Anatomy.

I admit it. I'm a RABID Grey's Anatomy fan. My secret shame? I have bookmarks on my computer for the voice-overs at the beginning and the end of each episode. Don't call me, don't text me, don't e-mail me (if you expect to speak to me or expect me to respond immediately) while Grey's is on. And don't come over unless you plan to sit quietly until a commercial comes on. I mean, c'MON people!! McDreamy almost DIED last season!!

And then there's Friday. I don't often get to watch TV on Friday and so I'm TOTALLY bummed that CSI:NY has been moved to Friday night. The only other one that interests me is the new cop show with Tom Selleck - Blue Bloods.

Yeah, I know. I'm lame. I have no life. I have no man (not that THAT'S such a big loss).

I actually have my "schedule" written down because along with not having a life, I have no memory, either.

Happy viewing!! And if I'm missing something that's totally worth watching, leave me a comment and tell me what I might be missing.

Happy Wednesday, Indeed

So, it's Wednesday. The one day a week where I don't have to go anywhere and I don't have to take anybody anywhere. Both the boys are in school so I have my house completely to myself from 11:30 until 3:00.

I could dance naked in my living room if I wanted to and no one would know. Hmmmm. Maybe I should look into getting one of those portable stripper poles.......


Wednesday. Nothing to do. So I have decided that since I get the house to myself everyday from 11:30 to 3:00 it's only fair that the children should have some time to run riot as well. I know, this could be a gigantic disaster, but we'll give it whirl anyway.

So. I am barricaded in my bedroom and the kids have control of the living room and all it's amenities. The DVD/CD player, the Wii, the big screen TV, everything. Right now they are jamming out to Collective Soul. Music blaring, air guitars going, dancing about and singing at the top of their little lungs. Only trouble with that is they only know a couple lyrics to every song. And a couple of them need a much bigger bucket.

In keeping with the nothing-to-do-on-Wednesday theme, I decided not to cook on Wednesdays either. Last week was the whole cold delivery pizza fiasco. This week we had roasted chicken from the grocery store deli. I had to get two so that everyone would have a drumstick. And a little sweet somthin-somthin for desert.

And everyone is happy. For the moment. I'm sure that will change, but for now....

In this moment....

Everyone is happy.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

RedBird Wisdom

I was given this little nugget of wisdom from my friend, RedBird this weekend.

"Don't tell God how big your problems are. Tell your problems how big your God is."

I don't know why, but this one has stuck with me all weekend. It bothers me. And it's weird because lately I can't remember shit unless I write it down. But I remembered this.

Maybe it sticks with me because I'm guilty of the first part of that statement. I tell God how big my problems are.

I say in my description of my blog that I do a lot of bitching here. And now that I think about it, I do a lot of bitching to God, too. I like to think I'm praying, but when it comes right down to it, I'm really just complaining. I hurt. I don't feel good. My kids are driving me crazy. My roommate is an idiot. The woman he's dating is icky. I'm lonely. I'm tired. I'm sad. The dumb ass that I got behind in traffic made me late.

And I have this attitude like "Here's what's wrong. Now, what are You gonna do about it??"

That's the wrong attitude. I should be saying thank you for another day. Even though I hurt and don't feel good, I woke up this morning. Thank you for these beautiful, healthy, smart children who, even though they drive me crazy, also make me smile every single day. Thank you for my stupid roommate because he does pay his rent and who he dates is none of my business. And I am tired, but I do have opportunities to rest. I just need to take them! And even though I'm lonely, I do know that I am never alone.

God has a plan for me. And instead of bitching around about everything that's wrong, I should be praying for His guidance and care as I try to figure out what that plan is.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Stupid Warning Labels

Common sense has apparently become exceedingly uncommon. This fact is made clear by number of insanely obvious warning labels on EVERYTHING.

Common sense tells me that if I order coffee, it's probably gonna be hot. And, also, if I get a Slush Puppy, it's gonna be cold. And yet, there are apparently people in the world for whom these are not obvious facts and so the words are printed on the cups.




I even found one on my cat litter. Well, not so much a warning as an assurance, but still, seemingly, painfully obvious.


I heard a little tid-bit on the morning news the other day that got me thinking on this subject. Apparently there is a question out there as to whether or not there should be warning labels on cell phones stating that texting while driving may be hazardous to your health and the health of others. AND, apparently we also need to have a discussion about whether or not it is inappropriate for train engineers to be texting while driving the bleeping train.

Are you kidding me? We really need to DISCUSS that? Let me answer that for you. YES. IT IS ENTIRELY INAPPROPRIATE. Never mind dangerous and stupid and negligent and about a thousand other things I could list.

Naturally, I had to know more so I Googled "stupid warning label." Here are some pearls of obvious wisdom that I found especially entertaining.

Bayer Aspirin: Do not take if you are allergic to aspirin.

Sleeping Pills: May cause drowsiness.

Midol (you know, the "special pills" for GIRLS): Do not take this product, unless directed by a doctor, if you have difficulty urinating due to enlargement of the PROSTATE GLAND (only boys have those, just so you know.)

On a jig-saw puzzle: Some assembly required.

Hair Dye: Do not use as an ice cream topping. (WTF?)

Lawnmower: Do not attempt to remove blade while mower is running.

Chainsaw: Do not attempt to stop chain with hands or genitals.

Pudding: Will be hot after heating.

Frozen Pizza: While cooking, place crust side down.

Deodorant: Use on underarms only.

At McDonald's: Parking for drive-thru customers only.

There were way too many to list them all. Here's the link if you would need a good laugh.

Like I said, common sense is shockingly, exceedingly, woefully in short supply.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Art of Complaining

Sometimes it's good to complain. In order to get results though, you have to do it right.

And I'm not usually one to complain very often. Okay, so I'm not one to complain very often to anyone who can do anything to fix the problem. And if I do, I'm more likely to be completely bitchy about it.

But last night I did some complaining and managed not to be a total bitch and was actually pleasantly surprised with the results.

The kids wanted pizza and I happened to have a tiny bit of cash so I decided I would treat them to delivery instead of the sauce-on-cardboard frozen variety. I placed the order on-line (a handy little feature, by the way) and the estimated delivery time was 5:52 p.m.

Twenty minutes after the estimated delivery time, almost an hour after I ordered it, the pizza finally shows up and it's barely even warm.Usually it's so bleeping hot that you burn your mouth off trying to eat it.

So, I call the pizza place, fully prepared to rip someone's face off. But something interesting happened. Instead of ripping the poor person who had the back luck to answer phone to shreds, I took a second, took a breath, and simply stated the facts. We ordered a pizza, it arrived 20 minutes late, it was cold. And then, instead of firing off some smart ass comment that was entirely inappropriate and would have pissed the girl off, I just waited for an answer. And instead of being snotty to me because I had been bitchy to her, the young lady offered to either send us out another pizza or post a credit to my account.

So, even though I was boiling over on the inside, because I was able to be civilized, we get a free pizza next time we order.

Progress, not perfection.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Stupid Shit #4 - The Jersey Shore

Please. Really?

I have to admit, I have not watched this show very much. I tried a couple of times but couldn't finish a whole episode.

Snookie was on Letterman last night. Smart girl, that one. (Once again, I wish there was a "sarcasm" font.)What is that thing on her head? What the hell is a Guido and a Guidette? And what is a "gorilla cheese pie?"

And there are eight of these idiots living in a house for the summer whose greatest ambitions are to sleep until noon, have a cocktail, get ready, go out and have many cocktails, fight amongst themselves, do each other and anyone else they can get their hands on, and have more cocktails.

I just don't get it. Maybe I'm too old to get it. Maybe I'm too intelligent to get it. I don't know. But I just don't get it.

Or, maybe I do get it. Maybe it reminds me of a time in my life when I acted like that - sleeping until 1 or 2 in the afternoon, getting ready to go out, going to the bar and drinking until closing, partying at the house until dawn, passing out and sleeping until 1 or 2 in the afternoon and so on and so on.

Sigh. I hope it doesn't take them 20 years to realize that there is so much more to life than that.

Like Letterman said, "People like to watch the show because it makes them feel better about themselves."

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Counting Blessings - My Mom and Dad

I am fortunate to have great parents who love me and never hurt me and who still do more for me than I will ever be able to thank them enough for. I was reminded today that not everyone has that and my heart breaks for her.

When we're little, we love them without question. They are our heroes. They can chase away bad dreams, slay the dragons in the closet, kill the spiders. They tell us not to stick our tongues on the wrought iron porch railing or the metal screen door when it's 30 below, and when we do anyway, they kiss away the boo-boos. They are Santa Clause, The Tooth Fairy, The Easter Bunny and The Great Pumpkin all rolled into one.

We get a little older and they might still be our heroes, but we start to get this feeling that they're not invincible super-heroes; that they're human and the do human things. Our boo-boos get bigger - broken hearts, broken limbs, broken promises. We do dumb things - like, backing the LTD through the garage door. (The door had windows at the time, the sun was going down and was level with said windows and when I checked the rear view, I swear the damn thing was open.) Dad wasn't happy.....wasn't happy to such a degree that he couldn't look at me. (And then over the years, both Mom and Dad have both taken a turn at backing through the door. WITHOUT the excuse of the sun blazing through the windows.)

A little older still and it seems we can't WAIT to get away from them, get out on our own where we have no rules, no curfews, no "stay away from my daughter" bullshit. (By the way dad, you absolutely knew what you were talking about.) And the boo-boos get even bigger. Sometimes, the boo-boos land us in the hospital for a week because sleeping pills and whiskey.....not a good combination.

And then we grow up, get married, have kids of our own and our parents get to say "I told you so!" because our children act just like we did and drive us just as crazy. And our spouses do dumb things and break promises and break our hearts.....sometimes even break our spirit.

But through it all, the one constant, the one thing that never changes and never goes away is their love and support. That love and support doesn't always look like or sound like what we want it to. My dad rarely says "I love you." But he comes and mows my lawn or brings the snow-blower and clears my sidewalks and my driveway. Love you too, Dad. And thanks.

My mother gets angry at the things that hurt me - my illness, my Former Supposed Spouse - and sometimes I get angry back because I think she's mad a me. But I know that she just wants the best for me. It hurts her to see me hurting and she gets frustrated when she can't "fix" me like she could when I was little.

So even though they drive me stark raving crazy sometimes, I honestly don't know what I would do without them. I don't know what I would do if my mother was like Maxine (my best friend's supposed mother) and was so wrapped up in her own miserable, minuscule, and unbelievably selfish little life that she couldn't be bothered to spend some time with her grandchild.

So, yeah. I'm counting Rex and Kris among the many blessings in my life.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Stupid Shit and Simple Joys

As promised, there is more stupid shit!

Stupid Shit Thing #3: Court Shows on TV

Judge Judy. Judge Mathis. Judge Pirro. Judge Alex. Judge Joe Brown. The Peoples' Court. Divorce Court. And now, Swift Justice with Nancy Grace.

Setting aside the fact the I find Ms. Grace even more obnoxious than Judy, do we really need another court show? Really?

I think not.

Judge Pirro: Did you know that in some states an engagement ring is considered a "conditional gift?" It's yours on the condition that you marry the guy. If you don't marry the jack-ass, you are required by law to return it. Not pawn it. Not throw it away. Not stick it in a drawer and lie about having lost it. AND, if you are really dumb enough to buy your gold-digger girlfriend Brazilian butt implants, don't count on getting your money back. She doesn't have it. That's why she's a gold-digger.

Go figure.

Judge Mathis: "Dope fiend" dad won't pay his child support. REALLY? You're KIDDING?

Oh and this was the best nugget of the day: "It ain't hearsay if YOU tell her about it!!"

Moral of the story, if you don't want your ex-wife to know that you are snorting coke and shooting heroin with your mother while your son is spending the weekend with you, DON'T TELL HER!!

It's like watching a train wreck. You can see it coming. You know it's going to be horrific. You're powerless to stop it but you just can't look away. It is at least comforting to know that someone else has a life even more screwed up than mine.

Think I'll go count my blessings now.

Simple Joys: Watching My Children Play

Much of the time, my boys don't so much play together as much as they try to kill each other. I'm told this is a phase they will eventually grow out of. Here's hoping they live that long.

But last night - last night was one of those rare, almost magical nights where they actually did play together. And it was a thing of beauty to behold.

My mom cooked dinner - roast beef with all the trimmings - one of my favorites. She knew I've been sick and would not feel like cooking so she called us up and invited us over. Thanks mom. (You're one of those blessings I will be counting.) And everyone actually cleaned their plates without too much of a fight. Yea!!

After dinner, I went outside to smoke and I sat on Mom's front porch and watched the kids run up and down the sidewalk. It was such a lovely evening. It was cold (it actually snowed here yesterday, but I've decided it doesn't count since it didn't stick) but the clouds had cleared off a little and the wind had stopped. It was so still I could hear the cheering from the softball field by Taco John's (mom's house is right next to the high school).

And they weren't fighting over toys, or bikes, or who goes first or who won the race....they just raced. From our driveway down the block to the black bench and back. From the end of the driveway up to the front step and back. From the driveway around to the garage and back. Ethan had a little trouble because he was wearing his cowboy boots so Bryson slowed down a little and actually let his little brother win a couple of times.

Wow. I'm speechless.

And when we got home, everyone went to bed without too much of an argument.

Again, speechless.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Thing About Addiction....

Here's the thing about addiction - it never really goes away.You can stop using your drugs. You can stop drinking your alcohol, but the addiction remains......disguised as longing.

Longing for the pain to go away. And it DOES NOT matter what you were addicted to - booze, drugs, food, sex, shopping, self pity, swinging from the ceiling - the longing is ALWAYS for the pain to go away.

A very good friend of mine in recovery tells me that SOBER stands for "son of a bitch everything's real." And yeah. It is.

And I sometimes get swallowed up whole by the longing for the pain to go away. The pain of loss. The pain of love that leaves. The pain of a child who's hurting that you can't do anything about. The physical pain that doesn't let my body work as well as it once did. The pain (and I can't quite figure out where this one is coming from) that makes me cry because I couldn't buy a bag of ice at Sinclair tonight because there was fresh-poured concrete in front of the ice chest. The pain of the mundanity of life. I start thinking that I just want the pain of all those things piled on top of each other to go away. (That's probably why I cry over ice - all those things piled up on top of each other.)

And I start thinking about what would most effectively do the job. Drugs. Food. Sex. Booze. Maybe all of the above. And I remember a time when I would use all of the above to do just that. (That's how I know they will work!!)

But here's the thing. Here's the thing that's different this third time. Here's the thing that let's me know I'm really, truly, in recovery this time.

It's ALL temporary. The relief those things would bring. The happiness I may (or may not) feel while using those things. Even the pain that causes me to consider those things in the first place.

It's               all               temporary.

In the past, I've never been able to get to that little tidbit. All I could think about, focus on, long for.....was the relief.

Today I can go to the thought that I might feel better if I drink a bottle of Crown and get past that to the thought that says the relief would be temporary and get past THAT thought to the one that tells me it will only make everything worse. That's the cycle of addiction. We drink (or use, or shop, or eat, or fuck) to make the pain stop and it does and then it comes back worse and brings his friend guilt so we drink more to make the pain stop and it does and then it comes back worse and brings his friends guilt and anger....and so on and so on and so on and so on until we end up in the abyss.

I'm lucky, I guess. I found the bottom of my abyss and at the bottom of my abyss was the door to Alcoholics Anonymous instead of the door to the afterlife. I've made it to "the long run" I think. I have tucked some things away "for future reference" as my mother is so fond of saying.

I've learned some things, maybe. I've grown up a bit. And I can still look back at all the fun times I had (yeah, it definitely was not ALL bad ;-}) but I can continue with the thought process that brings me to the knowledge that it is SO MUCH BETTER NOW.

Even when I don't feel fabulous.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Dyson Vacuum Cleaners

So, I loaned my somewhat-better-than-average-but-nothing-spectacular vacuum cleaner to the FSS's ex-wife (can anyone say chump?) so that she could clean up her nasty, filthy, dog-licking-ass-faced, disgusting PIT of a house so that she could I don't know, feel better about herself?

And it came back to me broken. And I mean not just broken, but broken to the extent where I could not fix it, broken. There was so much carpet string and pieces of plastic bags and crap (and yes, I do literally mean CRAP) wrapped around the beater brush that it would no longer turn.  And even if it had turned instead of burning up the belt, the little piece of hose that runs from the beater bar to the big long hose that runs to the canister was so stuffed with - well I'm not entirely sure what it was...maybe pieces of the inside of a bed that one of the cats had shredded in order to get inside the mattress and have her kittens?? - that it would not suck.

Mind you, I did not discover any of THIS until after I had pulled the big long hose out of it's spot to see if it was clogged up and discovered that it had a sizable GASH in it. Yeah. I was just a little pissed off.

And this was just the latest in a string of events with this woman. In fact, it was the very last straw on the very last lame-ass camel's back. I was, and remain, so done trying to help her out. She, and her house, are in God's hands now.

So I call my mother in a fit of tears because the whole reason I needed my vacuum cleaner back was so that I could clean up a mess the children had made with Itty Bitty Kitty's food. It was all over the floor. I asked if I could please borrow her vacuum cleaner. I did not remember at the time that she had purchased herself a Dyson for Christmas this past year.

Let me put it this way - I would perform sexual favors to anyone willing to purchase one of these machines for me.

It is really all that AND a bag of really delicious chips. I vacuumed my floor, I vacuumed my drapes, I skimmed the corners between the walls and the ceiling and quite efficiently removed the cobwebs. I EVEN VACUUMED MY TEXTURED CEILING AND THE TEXTURE IS STILL IN PLACE!!! Dust and cobwebs, not so much.

So, yeah. Dyson vacuum cleaners really do do what they say they do. Just thought you should know.

Stupid Shit

There is so MUCH stupid shit in my life right now that I have to write. I have to vent. I have to purge. I have to get it out or it will eat me alive. So for today, here are a couple. I am certain I will have more.

Stupid Shit Thing #1: Sex Inventories

For those of you not familiar with the 12-Step process, the Sex Inventory is part of the 4th Step (Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.) In the Sex Inventory, one makes a list of people with whom you have actually had sex or ever wanted to have sex or ever even thought about having sex.

And I used to have a list. I was proud of the list because I could look at it and say, quite sanctimoniously, that I never had sex with anyone that I didn't know their first and last name. I don't know what happened to the list. But it's gone. Along with my sanctimony. And a good deal of my self respect. What is left is a list with many of the names intact, but there are a few that escape me.

Maybe that's for the best.

In the inventory, we list the person and the reason and the circumstance. While there are lots of names, there is really only one reason and one circumstance. I was drunk and I wanted someone to love me.

And I'm fairly disgusted with myself.

And guess what - It was hard. It was scary. It was painful.

But here's the thing - even though I put it on my "Stupid Shit" list, now that it's done, I recognize the value in having done it (no pun intended). I can't move forward until I am willing to look at where I have been. There's no room for a sane future until I "clear away the wreckage of the past." So, here I am, clearing away.

Stupid Shit Thing #2: My Former Supposed Spouse

My Former Supposed Spouse (FSS) is currently incarcerated and so along with everything else, I am also a single parent to two beautiful little boys, ages 6 and 4.

The FSS does not believe that his unfortunate incarceration has had any effect on his children.

I beg to differ.

When the 4-year-old and I got home from his first day of preschool, he told me we were going to play a game and the game was called "Jail." He was the cop. I was the bad guy. He put the fake handcuffs on me and led me to my room where he informed me that I was now in "jail" and had to stay there until he said otherwise. He did take the handcuffs off and did tell me I could still use my phone, smoke my cigarettes, and use the bathroom when I needed to.

No effect, huh? Yeah. Whatever.

I'm trying REALLY hard to find a positive way to spin this so that it doesn't drive me crazy. My child has an AMAZING imagination. He tells me the MOST amazing stories. This is the first time this particular tale has played out and it just about broke my heart.

Get to Know Me Getting To Know Myself

Ok. I will be the very first one to admit it. I don't feel FABULOUS every day.

In fact, most days, I feel far from it.

I am a sober alcoholic. This is my third try at it. It's scary. It's different. It's hard. It's painful. But it is. Maybe just for today, but it IS.

I am living with Fibromyalgia. And most days, that really, really, really sucks. It's painful. It's scary. It's different. It's hard. It's exhausting. But it IS.

I remember a time when I felt normal. And I MISS it.

But here's the thing. Even though it's scary, painful, different, hard,'s worth knowing. I am worth knowing. Even if I'm the only one who knows that!