Round 2

Writers Write

Flutie, the Flutist, and Football Fanatics

I’m from a football family. Men, women, kids.. doesn’t matter. We all love football. It’s in our blood. We’ve coached (great uncle), played (uncle and kiddo), cheered (nieces), twirled (aunt), led pep squads and performed in nationally competitive marching bands (me), and enjoyed the vice every Sunday or Monday night for years – or at least when we can (practically everyone else in the family). However, we tend to love different teams – which just adds to the fun.

Ma, bro-in-law, and niece’s fiance are Browns girls (see what I did there? Exactly) all the way.

Sis and nephew (and ex hub – kiddo’s dad) are Steelers fanatics.

I love the Bengals and the Patriots.

I refuse to be a Brown’s fan out of spite. Same with Steelers. There are reasons for this.

First, the Steelers. They’re a good team. There’s no doubt about that. Their Super Bowl record alone proves that. However, they were my ex husband’s favorite team. He picked on my Bengals whenever they played the Steelers. And since my guys SUCKED ASS at the time, I learned to loathe his team. When my sister and nephew joined the ranks and began the shit, the fuckers had to go. I left the country just in time to avoid killing all three. OK, it probably had very little to do with the football team, but still.

My dislike of the Browns has everything to do with the team, though. While married to my first hub, we were active in sports activities. We supported state football champions and hit the H.S games as often as possible. We went to the Football HOF inductee ceremony every year. And one year, we went to a Browns exhibition game at the local champ stadium. Having a VIP pass at the time allowed us to roam freely. That’s when I learned what overpaid babies those fuckers really were.. and how willing they were to cheat not only on the field, but their fans as well. This was right before Art Model fucked Cleveland up the rear. But still, he wasn’t the one telling his starting line to whine over it being too cold and not having the right lighting for their closeups; followed by threats to leave if fans didn’t cheer louder for them on the field, and then making little kids cry by getting into fights with the parents over refusing to take pictures or sign autographs. It was a demo game. THEY WERE THERE TO MINGLE WITH THE FANS!!

Oh, I know the team has evolved. But they’re still the same spoiled fucktards in my eyes.

On the other hand, when I really like someone, I tend to be their biggest cheerleader. It’s just one of my quirks. I met several of the Bengals in the late ’80s. I knew Boomer Esiason personally for years and I loved him. Sitting in the stands and having him wave or wink at me, or getting a quick surprise hug after meet-n-greets, helped make a loyal fan out of a teenage girl. He wasn’t just a good player, he was a good guy. And he led the fuck out of his team. My heart broke when they lost the ’89 Super Bowl.

I became a Pats fan later that year. My college marching band was asked to play for a Buffalo Bills home game. They played the Patriots that day. I sat in the front stands with my cohort – mostly Bills fans. We met Jim Kelly, and he was nice but cocky as hell. As we all walked off the field after the game, a cute Pats player ran up to me and offered me his arm. I looked over, offered a coy smile, linked his arm, and noticed the name. Flutie. Immediately, the giggles started as I held up my instrument and made an ass of myself…

“You’re Flutie and I’m a flutist. We already have a connection!” (In my defense, my flirting skills have improved. Somewhat.)

I melted at his smile and shrunk at his chuckle. Covering for my idiocy, I said “It’s OK. I really don’t ride the short bus”.

*record scratch*

This is when it pays to:

A. Think before speaking, and

B. Say something completely idiotic a year or two before the cute football player who makes you a stammering mughead has an autistic kid.

So, bullet dodged. I still felt like an idiot for saying it and for flirting with a very happily married man, regardless of how fine he looked in spandex. When he transferred to the Bills the next year, it totally threw me off. I’d root for the Bills when they didn’t play the Bengals or Pats, but I remained a Pats fan in the hopes he’d return. Besides, they just rocked. He gave me my wish in 2005. Unfortunately, I had already moved to Canada and I couldn’t catch most NFL games where we lived.

And then he did the unthinkable – he transferred to the Canadian Football League! MF’er! As much as I wanted to, I just couldn’t bring myself to root for the CFL.. even if they did play a version of American football. Instead, I hid out among the French *spit* and whined every year over not being able to root for (or cuss at) my guys. Flutie may have left the NFL, but I remained a Pats fan nonetheless.

It’s been over a decade since I’ve been able to watch my teams. To be honest, I wasn’t even sure I’d bother with the Super Bowl this year. And then the text came. As I was working, sis sent: “The game just started. Your fucking team is up. Want wings?” Well, let me think for half a second. The rest was history.

Was it the best game ever? Not even close. But it was a good game, even with the constant family and friend rubbing of “The cheaters shouldn’t have been there in the first place!” True. It is. I don’t condone cheating and they deserved more than a fine for that shit. But they made it and they won. The rest can shut it. I’m not making excuses, but football is not an innocent game. It’s nasty and competitive as fuck. And some of the players are real douche bags. So that petty final minute brawl? Give me a damn break.

**How about the biggest baby of all, Jim MacMahon’s 1986 Super Bowl moon on national TV towards a helicopter camera crew?

**Or how what about when good old Eugene Robinson won the Bart Starr Award for “high moral character” (a “Christian” moral award) in 1999, only to get arrested within a few HOURS for soliciting an undercover cop for prostitution. Whoops!

Sorry, but deflategate and a pissy fit were child’s play. And that’s pretty much what most of these players are anymore: overpaid babies. But damn, they’re fun to watch!

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You’re lucky. He’s lucky. I’m lucky. WE’RE ALL LUCKY!

My family can make me want to pull my hair out at times. But other times, they’re brilliant and enlightening. If I told my sister she was brilliant yesterday, I’d never live it down. So I swear I’ll lie my ass off if it ever gets back to her. BUT..

Her husband has some personality issues. She assumes he’s bi-polar. He very well may be, but he’s never been diagnosed. All he knows for sure is that sometimes the tight family thing is too much for him. He wasn’t raised the way we were – with traditions, respect, and family loyalty being prized above all else. Sometimes all those emotions and demands smother him. So he has learned to distance himself during those times. If he doesn’t take a break early enough, he ends up saying mean and hurtful things to people he normally loves. I say “normally” because he admits that sometimes he doesn’t feel like he loves the people he knows he should. It’s more than just a normal feeling of distance. He actually goes numb to his own wife at times – the woman he usually loves more than anyone in the world.

He shuts himself alone in their room for the night (she works nights anyway) when he’s feeling that way. And by the next morning – or sometimes the next night after work – he’s feeling much better and acting better as well. My sister has learned how to handle this. She knows when to give him space, what NOT to say, and how and when to pick her battles. He’s not innocent in all of that – not by a long shot. And sometimes his mouth escalates and things can’t just be ignored or set aside. Still, not everything needs to be taken to heart or commented on when the moods occur.

He knows he’s saying cruel or unfair things, and he even means some of it at the time. But it’s his battle and he needs to get over it on his own. If an apology is required, they discuss that at a later date when he’s in the right mindframe. She loves and trusts him enough to know he’ll accept his responsibility and make amends when his brain chemical levels stabilize. And it’s brought them closer together because he appreciates how she’s learned to handle his needs.

She won’t take serious abuse, though. And if he goes off the rails with trash talk, she’ll take his ass to divorce court or marriage counseling before she puts up with that bullshit. But the improvements he’s made with her love and support over the past fifteen years together give her hope that he’ll never get to that point. He has told her she makes him want to be a better man. And it’s more than words. He’s proven it because of the smart choices she’s made – after learning a few hard lessons. Talking to her about this has alerted me to some of my own mistakes. Maybe my sister is still teaching me about life and love. She made me realize how and when to begin picking my battles better, and that’s so important at any stage.

HOWEVER

Her daughter and I may end up winning a dual battle against Mrs. Know-It-All.

My youngest niece is my mini-me. We look nothing alike beyond being short, having doe eyes, and big boobs. But we have practically identical personalities – except for her super quick-sparked and long-lasting temper when she’s PISSED (she gets that from her mom), and heartbreaking sensitivity (she has my old overly sensitive nature before life happened). Unlike their mother, all of her children love my goofy, campy interest in certain cult movies and plays. After moving back home, my niece found out I have one of her favorite movies. Upon hearing that information, plans were promptly made to go to a live show relatively soon-ish. Her mother cursed as my niece and I screamed – matching pitch – and jumped up and down.

My sister finally said, “Rocky Horror? Really? It had to be that?! OK, who are you going to be?”

My niece looked at her mother dumbfounded after claiming Columbia for herself (she’ll be a redhead by then) and said, “Have you met Aunt O? Have you seen the hair? She’s Magenta. God, Mom!”

Ya know, the idea of portraying a sexy, incestuous, time travelling vamp at 44 years old sounds fun. But the reality.. let’s just say there are public decency laws for reasons. And leg fat oozing through fishnets can potentially land my ass in jail. BUT we went to a party store and found boas, glitter, and theatre makeup, so it’s pretty much on. This means I have most of the year – if we don’t put it off until next year – to ensure my junk stays in its own trunk. Besides, IF I can pull it off.. daaaamn!

Therefore, I’ve been hitting online sites to see what I can piece together. I found an adorable Columbia costume for her. But the Magenta sets are crap. I don’t need the wig, and the outfit is cheap looking and gross. I shall work my magic to create my own ensemble that will look far better than that. Hopefully. So far, I’ve found a great (somewhat short, but not overly trampy) French maid’s uniform, a black corset, fishnet hose (not stockings, though that might change later), black lace boy shorts, and d’orsay heels or sexy maryjane pumps that would look amazing – and probably not kill me as I attempt to walk in them. Once the hair, makeup, and nails are done and the right feather duster is found, I’ll be set. Might not get the boa since Magenta isn’t in the final dance sequence. We’ll see.

A friend asked me if I knew her lines? Um.. 6 lines and a song verse in the entire show. Methinks I can learn the bit I don’t already have memorized by then. Now it’s time to jump to the left and transform the body so I can have fun driving Mrs. Know-It-All absolutely bat shit crazy with this. Oh, it’s been too long since I’ve had such power. I can just imagine the pictures that will inevitably be taken. I feel like I’m about to enter a time warp.

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Yappy Hew Near’s!

I mean, Happy New Year’s. And thank gods there are no more obligatory family holidays for a long-ass while!

In a family full of casual drinkers, I’m the lightweight. Always have been, although it takes more than half a glass of wine to get tipsy now. Still, I’m am basically the anti-drinker. Once a year, maybe. Fine, perhaps twice if there’s a really good reason. But since moving back to the states, I’ve realized two major things – and one was just a reminder. First, the reminder: my family is nuts. Second, the realization: They think it’s hilarious when I drink.

Last night was family night. My kiddo, niece, great-niece, and I went to an outdoor party and then settled over at mom’s house to chill for a while and let her spoil us since she lives for that. My mom came up to me last night after handing me my second glass of champagne, hugged me when I giggled over having to lick the flute because the contents sloshed, and then said “I love seeing you relax. You of all people deserve to once in a while”. Really, ma? Once in a while? Every time I’ve seen that woman since moving back, I’ve ended up with either a drink in my hand or one offered. Last night’s poison?

Brandy Alexander

Brandy Alexander. Tastes like a milkshake. Makes the walls move. It honestly just took the edge off.. at first. Until a second was offered. I was sure I passed on that, but someone said I drank half of it. I think they’re full of shit. But then the champagne popped and I do remember drinking that. Well, some anyway. Good gods. I don’t like champagne – until the middle of the second glass. But then I really like champagne. However, mixing brandy and champagne causes a strange reaction. I forget I have a left foot. Apparently, I kept walking around in circles in my mom’s living room while asking people why I couldn’t feel my foot? I’m pretty sure I only completed a spin or two, if that.

Somehow I ended up on the couch babbling something that made TOTAL sense to me. But my niece’s fiance/designated driver looked at my son and said, “I wanna be HER drunk in a few hours so I get to say whatever the hell I’m thinking at any given time without judgement.” Kiddo looked at the dude and said, “Oh, that’s not HER drunk.. that’s just HER. And she’s not really the type of person to give a rat’s ass over judgmental bullshit anyway.” Pretty much. And so I drank to that.

*Note: I was SURE I had 2.5 glasses of champagne. Turns out I had closer to 5. Why the discrepancy? Well, because apparently draining other glasses when they hand them over and say “Hey, O, I don’t want this. Care to finish it for me?” counts as part of the total amount of alcohol consumed. Whoops.

We left a little after 2 am because the wall kept moving and someone told me we were out of champagne. After I got home, good kiddo helped me upstairs and made me promise not to go back downstairs for ANY reason until I slept at least 8 hours. But just before bed, I realized I only had a few hours to accept a work assignment. So I set my alarm for 3 hours, crashed, and awoke to an extra day added to my work timer.. because my clients love me and totally understand that people here like it when I drink. And it’s a good thing my client adjusted the timer, because the alcohol must have convinced my fingers at 2:30 in the morning that “Yo! These are really good shoes, y’all!” was a good way to begin the next shoe description. The words were staring me in the face when I got up for real at 11:30-ish or so. Yeah, they’re not surviving the final edit. Sorry.

I was supposed to go back today for more family fun, but I opted out using work as an excuse. This afternoon I got texted that two more bottles of champagne were hidden in the house, and if I could find them they’re mine. Fuckers. All of ’em. And for that, they’re waiting another ten years to see me run into walls again. Or at least another year. ‘Tis a plan! Repeat after me: Ona will NOT become a lush. Sorry, ma.

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Ah, Moody Christmas!

Happy Fricking Holidays to all, and may no one die due to being a complete asshole at the wrong time.

Yep. That about sums up the week in Ona Land. In all fairness, it’s really not my fault. I mean, is it ever? Don’t answer that. Point is, it’s not this time.

Last night was “family night”. *Squee*. Yes, I just.. hush. It was the second time I’ve been around my entire family since I moved back to the states. Not bad considering I’ve been here for almost 3 months. Oh! But there will be at least two more family get-togethers before that 3 month date hits, which will total at least 4 family get-togethers I will have attended since moving back here. And thus far, no one’s died. But two almost did last night. Note: BAD idea to fuck with me on my moody days during hell week.

So.. holiday family time means everyone who actually likes my mother, or at least loves someone who likes my mother, congregates at her home so she feels like the matriarch she is and the whole big, loverly, German family shit gets to happen. Oh, and we do the whole deal. Fourteen people gather around the tiny decorated living room. Ma shops for weeks before and plans enough to feed an army. She loads a long table as kids run around. Adults talk, laugh, and eat. And eat, and eat. And DRINK. And eat some more.

People get loud. Rude words get spoken. And that’s all fine and dandy when it’s blood family. We know the boundaries. It’s real simple. The sisters can call each other bitches. The men can call each other dick or asshole, act like they’re in love with each other.. yeah, my family’s weird. Ma gets a playful mouth when she drinks. Finger flipping is fine… away from tiny eyes. Calling your wife/fiance/girlfriend a bitch.. what? Calling my mother a fucking idiotic bitch.. WHAT??!!!

I didn’t give a rat’s ass what happened, or who said it. It happened as I was opening the bathroom door and I was in the back room with a glare so deadly it scorched the fucker’s retinas. He swallowed and lowered his head as my nephew ran to me and pushed me out of the room saying, “It’s OK, Aunt O, it’s OK. I got this. BREATHE AUNT O!”

Yeah, I get I’ve been away for 11 years. Some things don’t change. You don’t get to enter this crazy, emotionally charged, overbearing, boisterous, incredibly loving, LOYAL AS FUCK family and then disrespect my mother in HER HOME, YOU FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT! I don’t care if you’re sleeping with my niece! YOU CAN BE REPLACED! And no one will find your body.

But I calmed.. out of respect for my mother. She ignored his rude ass, but someone told her I was about to rip his head off. She called me into the kitchen, rubbed my back, and thanked me for being on her side. Well, duh. She’s my mom. I don’t play that game. The problem is, the guys in the family just LOVE this asshole. And my son considers him one of his best friends, which is why he surprised me a few hours later. But it just goes to prove I raised my boy right.

We went to an outdoor light show. It was lovely and festive. We all had a ball. Well, asshole decided to stop in front of me as I was walking and pretended he was going to slap my face. I looked up at him, stopped just short of his hand and punched his arm. My son, however, came out of nowhere. He must have seen it late, too. Or maybe he didn’t like what he saw at all. I saw nothing but arms. He tackled the guy and put him in a HARD headlock. The guy could barely breathe. All I heard was “Dude, playing.. she already.. hit.. me!” I said “OH, that hit was just for the thought of touching me!” My kid let go when he realized I was watching and the guy nodded really fast, not making eye contact. My kid kept his eyes locked on him. He said, “You’re one of my best friends, man. But don’t fuck with my mom. EVER!” The guy just nodded and actually apologized.

Kiddo told the guy he’s gotta have more respect for the women in this family if he intends on remaining a part of it. The guy said, “Well, I do respect your mom. It’s HER mom I have a problem with.” My eyes raised. He met them and said “She hates me.” I said “Bullshit. My ma doesn’t hate anyone. She hates disrespect. Show her some consideration, respect her home and family, and all will be fine.” Annnnd he started again..

“Bullshit! She lost her shit over something she had no business losing her shit over and blah, blah, blah, fucking bitch, blah, blah, I mean, sorry – no offense.”

My son had his head in his hands at that point and I was in the guy’s face. “No offense? Are you stupid. Wait. Don’t answer that. Idiotic question. Must run in the family.

My son laughed and turned away saying, “Oh, good luck!”

I continued. “You are a guest in this family. UNTIL YOU PROVE YOURSELF AS A MAN, THAT IS WHAT YOU ARE! And right now, you have a lot to prove. I know how my mother can be. But she deserves respect. You fucked up at her house and she called you on it. We’re firecrackers when we’re mad, but we forgive fast and try to move on with the people we love – most of us anyway. And if you can’t or won’t accept responsibility for your part, let shit go, and give proper respect, then get the fuck out. Now. Because it won’t get any easier if you keep being an asshole. And if you don’t love my niece enough to respect her and the women in her family, then at least make damn sure I never hear that shit again. Because there WILL be trouble.”

I don’t even know what he said, but he wasn’t looking at me. That rant may or may not have been fueled by other things. Point is, it needed to pop. Right then. When I finished my rant, I noticed my son beside me shaking from laughter and staring at the guy. As I walked away, I heard him say, “Well, you brought it upon yourself. I DID warn you!”

Later, we all went to dinner together. As the family piled into adjoining tables, I felt someone staring at me. I looked up and noticed the guy’s eyes boring into me. So I joined him. You want games? Bring it on, fucker. We stared for probably 40 seconds before he looked away like the pussy he is. He tried twice more and repeated the result. Yeah, good luck trying to intimidate me in my family, you fucking piece of scum. I’ve had 44 years of Olympic-style training against contenders with whom he couldn’t dream of competing. But adorable effort.

Meanwhile, Christmas should be fun lol! Merry, merry to all!

**Oh, I mentioned 2 people almost died. Right. My sister chose the wrong time to pretend to smack me on the forehead. My son had to hold me back from knocking her down a flight of steps. And I’m the calm one in the family. At that point, my ma just lost it and yelled “Will everyone please stop touching her already?!!” Thankfully, it seems as though I’m finished with my moody days for hell week. Right then. Happy holidays!

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I Hate Rollercoasters

The last couple months have been so crazy. My moods have been everywhere. Finally, I’m back where I belong – with people who really love me. REALLY love me. See, I’ve realized something in my 44 years on this planet. Love saves. It doesn’t matter how far you’ve gone. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve stayed away. It doesn’t matter what demons you cast upon yourself. If someone TRULY loves you, love saves.

Everyone needs that damn four letter word. Everyone deserves it. And therein lies the rub. Not everyone is willing to let it in, to let it repair the damage. That sucks. I know this first hand because I believed I was unworthy of love for a long time. That belief made me absolutely miserable. It sent me in the wrong life direction. It made me marry the wrong man. It made me die a little every day. But when I finally pulled my HEAD OUT OF MY ASS and realized I was worthy, I found the real deal. And then… well, he’s lost. He’s where I was. And I can’t save someone who won’t meet me halfway. I need to be saved sometimes, too. I guess I’ll just have to do that myself, though, because I DO believe in real love. I believe in that all encompassing healing force that can make miracles happen if you just don’t give up. I’m damn sure not giving up on myself again, even if someone else chooses to and can’t manage to love me for who I am. I wasted too many years on that bullshit – half of my life to be exact.

As for romance, one day someone will love me the way he needs to. I know he’s out there. Somewhere. And he’ll find me because he’ll have no choice. He won’t be complete until he does. And he’ll come to ME, damn it. Until then, however, I’ll just continue loving myself. I can be enough. I’m not too far gone for that. I’ll never be gone like that again.

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New Beginnings

So much has happened in the past month. My head’s starting to spin again, but it’ll calm. It has to. Why? Because today is – wait for it – moving day! I didn’t know how I’d feel about this a few weeks ago. I mean, I knew things were over a LONG time before that was vocalized. And I was fine with it. But I’ve been known to have insane mood flops, so I waited…expecting…something. And I figured that something might be pretty bad.

Shocker. Nothing happened. There’s no mopey nostalgia, no wistful regrets, and most importantly, no anger. I really thought I’d be PISSED! Oh, I was pissed. Aaaand I may have had a *bit* too much fun with revenge. We’ll just leave that there. But I’m not mad anymore, at anyone. I had a headache last night, so I know he thought I was mopey. But I don’t give a rat’s ass what he thinks. A headache’s just fine.

When I left my first marriage, I was an emotional wreck. I was still a wreck when I remarried. But I ran away from all of my attachments – just left them in a cloud of dust. To hell with them, right? Well, they waited. They knew one day I’d need them. One day I’d come back and be happier, healthier, and ready to start anew. And this is the day.

Oh, I have plenty to slam soon-to-be-ex with, and that was my intention. But at this point, I don’t think I’m even going to waste time with the planned final epic blow out. I mean, why even bother? Why get myself all worked up and high strung right before walking into the open arms of people who actually do love me? Oh, I’ll still tell him I know what he’s done. And if he flops or stalls on the divorce, I’ll stuff his ass with hot coals. But I won’t say it in an overly aggressive way. See? Exactly. Fucking zen!

Work is going well, and I may even have an unexpected friend in the works. I love finding unexpected friends. My ex husband’s girlfriend of over a decade emailed me last week. She and I had some trouble right after ex and I split. It got pretty nasty. But she’s been really good to my boy since he’s been staying with them. That just wiped all the bullshit away. Well, ten years worth of growing the hell up helped a lot. But still. Be good to my boy and you’re aces.

I emailed her and thanked her for accepting him so graciously into her home and family life shortly after kiddo settled. She responded last week. She insisted it’s a joy having him there and went on and on about what a wonderful mother I am for raising such a polite and caring young man. She told me she respects me and her fondest wishes are for her to learn some parenting tips from me and for us to be friends. Her words of “Please come over and visit us a lot. I’d love to finally become good friends. I know it may be uncomfortable for you at first. But I really respect you so much, and I just want to bask in the glow of the woman who raised such a loving human being. I know exactly which part of the tree he fell from, and I want to know her.”

After catching my breath from laughing, I responded very nicely and adult-like. See? I can behave. There’s still no response, though, so I may not have behaved as well as I thought I did. But it’ll be fine. Really. Just fine. I think.

Today: Well, I have a few work requests, but they have extended deadlines to allow for the move. I love my clients. So screw work today. Probably. I still have to finish packing the final few things and primp just enough to avoid looking like walking death after the ten+ hour ride back home.

New beginnings. Gotta love ’em. Or something.

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It’s oooover…it’s oooover…it’s oooover!

Sorry for the Loverboy flash back, but a lot has happened in these past 2 months or so. Turns out my second marriage that I said would either end in fire or tears is ending in neither. But it is ending. I honestly just assumed I’d find out one day that he was gay and end up moving back in with my sister for a while. One of those is happening…the sister part. Although, I’m not completely unsure of the former. Hey, this is my rant spot. Deal with it.

I don’t care one way or the other if he is gay. But he doesn’t need to lie about it. There’s been enough of that on his end. Thus far, I’ve caught him on dating sites and flirting with 20-some year olds elsewhere. I don’t give a rat’s ass about the flirting. Hell, I flirt. But I don’t lie about it. It’s the lying I can’t stand. And he’s become a pro at that. So when HE told me he doesn’t love me anymore, that was all I needed to hear. I may not be the best catch in the world, but I sure as hell deserve more than that.

So…8 weeks to earn some cash via work, get my stuff packed, and I’m back off to the states. And living with my sister. *facepalm*. At 44. Fuck. But honestly, my sister’s reaction of “IT’S ABOUT FUCKING TIME!” and “When should I expect you, babycakes?” made me feel more loved than I have in a long time. So this will be fine. I’m not heartbroken over this and it’s been a shitload easier than the breakup of my first marriage. This is just another speedbump. And I’ll be a better person and writer for it.

A better writer? Oh, yes. I’ve been holding back on my story because I didn’t want to piss hub off…or hurt his ego. Something like that. I didn’t want him to one day read the story (he wouldn’t, but still) and say “is that how you see me?” or “you made me the asshole?” To hell with that. It’s just a story that had absolutely no connection with real life issues…until now. And suddenly a certain character is going to have a few extra familiar traits. Thanks, honey. *spit*

In all fairness, if he wanted to be portrayed well he should have acted better. It’s really not my fault. At all. I’m running with this.

Meanwhile, I’ve heard the following song 4 times over the last week (nope, not Loverboy) and giggled myself senseless at least 3 of those times. Funny how I haven’t heard it for years and then this week: BAM! Also odd how I’ve just realized how pedophilic the original video is. Therefore, I’m adding the slightly less ew video instead. Same song, though. Of course, now all I can think while watching it is “Oh, Lexie, you little whore!” Right then. NSFW.

Next update may be after I’m back in the states, or it could be tomorrow. Who the hell knows or cares for that matter. Enjoy the tune.

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Surprised Again

Kiddo left one month ago as of today, and I’m still alive. That’s a good thing. I think. Well, I’m not one of those women who can’t function when change occurs. I’ve battled my demons and know how to keep them tame…for the most part. I ADORE my boy and he’s my best friend in the world. But I knew he’d leave one day, so I prepared. It still took me the entire freaking month to stop tearing up every time I went into his lifeless room. But now I can clean his closet without grabbing a coat and rocking on the bed. WOOT! OK, so maybe it hasn’t been that  bad, but my inner mom has been having a rough time. She’s calming now. 

Meanwhile, I’ve been writing…not my WIP, mind you, but actual stuff that pays. Kinda. I’m a slow writer and work is molasses this time of year, so money’s really tight. I make a bit monthly, but it’s nowhere near a livable wage. I hoped I’d be closer to a certain monthly number by now, but I realize I can’t force extra work to come my way. All I can do is be open to it when it does materialize. That sort of maturity floors me. I know I have it in me, but it’s still a shocker when it flashes. 

My mom’s shown signs of the same lately. Now understand, I love my mom but she’s different. She’s a tough bitch. And I can say that because it’s absolutely true. I’ve called her on it countless times. Everyone who meets her falls under her spell instantly; NOT because she’s insanely beautiful to look at – although she’s always had Audrey Hepburn-esque qualities, but because of her personality…to those who don’t know her. She’s hilarious, kind, loyal, incredibly intelligent and killer strong. But she can be one hell of a bitch. When people compare us, and they have my entire life, I groan with mixed feelings. I LOVE her positive traits, but the negative ones blow all of those out of the water. When my mother gives her opinion, that is the only option. Period. It’s not up for debate and she will make anyone who goes against her suffer through mastered mental manipulation. She can be ruthless and cruel without even trying.

This is tough for me because I’ve seen it in myself. Of course, I’ve seen it a lot more in my siblings. One reason I moved so far away from my family for so long was to get away from that. I was really worried about what would happen when my boy went back…what my family would say and how they’d react to him (possessive wise, not if they’d accept him. I know they adore him). And even though it’s absolutely none of my business, I worried about not only what they’d think of me since they have him back there, but also what they’d say. My middle sibling and my mom can’t manage to get along for more than 5 minutes. It’s more than just personality conflicts, my sister can’t stand our mom. There are legitimate reasons for her angst, but she takes it way too far. So, I wasn’t too surprised when she tried putting my kid in the firing line. 

My mother will hold a family cookout for any reason she can think of. If it rained for three days and she saw a rainbow coming home from work…cookout time! It’s just really tough getting everyone together anymore. So when everyone decided they could make it to “grams” over Memorial Day weekend, she threw a quickie cookout together. Turned out my kid didn’t get the message. Mom got upset and made it clear in an email to me that she was disappointed everyone was there but him. I thought that was hilarious and made fun of my family when I talked to him next. And then he contacted my sister about it to let her know people need to tell him about things if they want him to be there. It wasn’t a vent. It was an innocent comment because most of the kids in the family are hers. However, she took that to mean that mom purposely didn’t invite him. She didn’t ask ME about this. Oh no. She texted my mother and called screaming about it. And then mom emailed me all hurt and worried about her part of “neglecting and alienating” him. And then I dealt with kiddo and told him not to do that shit again because my sister is nuts and grams is apparently overly hormonal. What fun. 

Meanwhile, I’ve been emailing several times, back and forth, with my mother and I realized something. She’s kinda cool. Well, I always knew she was cool. But since we’ve been here, anytime we’ve talked, she’s gotten overly personal and demanding. I guess with age, new health issues and medication, she’s let some of that obsessiveness go. At least with me. At least right now. Maybe she sees me differently, stronger, since I “let” my “baby” go out into the world. The day he left, she emailed me all worried. My mom doesn’t worry about me like that, so it surprised me. But she said how scared she was for me. I had to read her words a few times to get it. It wasn’t a ploy, she wasn’t pretending. She was honestly concerned. She thought I’d lose my shit and gods know what else after he left. I was in really bad shape when I left my ex husband. I spiraled into a deep depression for almost a year. At the worst stage, I had a bit of a breakdown. My mom witnessed that. But I’m stronger now. I won’t go into that darkness again. I’ve told her that, but I guess she needed proof. She saw proof when my kid recently stayed with her for the weekend. 

Suddenly, the emails were different. “He’s doing so well, kitten.” “Oh, darlin’, you’ve made me happy to see him like this”. And most recently: “You’ve done a great job with the boy.” And my heart stopped. 

My mother has never said the words “You’re a good mom” to me. I know why. It’s not because I’m not one. I don’t boast or brag much about stuff, but I’m a damn good mom. But my mother said those words to my siblings and they proved her wrong at one point or another. One of my siblings, especially, has been a horrible parent in the past. The idea of telling me I was a good mother was lost on her. I’ve heard it from everyone else, but she didn’t want me to prove her wrong like her other kids had. It’s taken me a long time to realize this, but I get it now. And I’m OK with that. I don’t need her approval to carry on. Still, a daughter always wants to impress her mom. It’s ingrained. So while it wasn’t “You’re such a good mother. I’m so proud of you, baby girl”,  “You’ve done a great job with the boy” was a hell of a shocker. 

Aaaand I’ve gotten back into yoga, which is apparently good for releasing pent up emotions. Ya don’t say? Yup. Who knows, maybe by the time I get myself back into order, I can consider rebuilding relationships back home. I know, I know, one step at a time. But the stairs look sturdier than they have in a long time. 

 

 

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Have a Matrifocal Day!

I woke up in a crappy mood. Kiddo’s gone and hub’s working today. I don’t care about the latter, and kiddo would just be working anyway if he were here. But my mind was burning before I got out of bed. Not talking to the boy for 4 days hasn’t helped. Well, he hasn’t called, period (his phone’s a mess), but we were texting on Facebook until recently. I get he’s busy and his dad is financially unstable, among other things. So when I’m cognitive, I’m not worried about that. But when I checked Facebook this morning and there was nothing – no message, no wall post…nothing…I got pissed. Not one year has gone by that I haven’t handed him my cell phone and said “Call your father. It’s Father’s Day”, or his birthday, or whatever. Hub insisted my mind was just being evil again and I needed to breathe, as he made breakfast. That was nice. But I was still irrationally pissed or hurt. Whatever. And then while washing breakfast dishes, the following happened:

Hub: Hun? Your boy posted the following on your wall…

“Happy mothers day, mom! Thinking about you all the time. Enjoy your day, you deserve it for all the amazing things that you do. Your love for me has never ceased. Your baby boy is a man now, thanks to your loving care. So today, and all days, I love you, mom.”

My shoulders buckled, I sobbed, and turned away from hub’s prying stare…because I can NOT stand being watched when the tears start. Instead, I grabbed a tissue, nodded, and muttered I’d reply in a bit. Hub smiled and turned away like a good boy.

As he left for work, I logged onto fb and found the following instead of the original message:

“Happy Mothers Day, mom! Thinking about you all the time. Enjoy your day, you deserve it. Tryyyy to relax, I know how you are. So today, and every day, I love you, mom.”

My email says they posted within minutes of each other. So kiddo meant the first one; but he decided it was too girly and posted the second one instead to prove he’s a “man”. And I’m fine with that because I have BOTH saved in my inbox. And that’s enough to make this day pretty special…even though it’s just a typical day on my end.

To all who know or have amazing kids who continually surprise you and pull you out of irrational, moody-ass funks, may your day be matri-fabulous!

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Alive and…Well, Alive Anyway.

*Peeks in*

I know, I know, it’s been awhile. But I had to wait to post. Well, I guess I didn’t *have* to, but it made more sense to…and then I just got lazy. It happens. Kiddo left Monday. He’s been close to 700 miles away for almost 5 days now. The past couple months were weird. I was on and off emotionally, but I didn’t really believe he was leaving until the week prior to his departure. Tears didn’t start, however, until the end of his final week here. And REAL tears (*bawling*) didn’t occur until he grabbed me, hugged, and cried first. I tried to be strong, and I would have succeeded if he hadn’t said “Ma, I really wish you could move back with me.” Yep, that did it.
 
I planned for this..knew he was leaving. And no, I wasn’t “fine”, but I accepted it. I’m proud of him and know this is what he needs to begin his adult life. We’ve had 21 years together. And when you home school your kid, work at home, and have never spent more than a week apart, you tend to need a break eventually. This is good for both of us. But I miss him…so much. I’m tough, though. I’m not the type of person who curls up in a ball and cries it out in the corner. I internalize too much shit. SO I’ve stayed busy. I’ve started freelance writing, I’m working out again, trying to keep up on some extra house work, and then I spend the evenings avoiding arguing with hub. If that means half of the night I’m pretending to watch Netflix and the rest of the night I’m reading and walking the dog, so be it. I’m making a hell of an effort not to attack hub emotionally for being an insensitive jack hole. And so far, so good. If I had anyone around to make a wager about it lasting beyond the month, I believe I’d be out of some money. But I AM trying.
 
Kiddo said before he left that we’d talk “all the time” and that “nothing would change”. Well, that’s bullshit. We’re already not talking all the time. He’s busy with extended family and friends. And of course things have changed and will continue to do so. That’s life. I nodded when he said the words and kept my mouth shut like a good girl. I know he adores me and I refuse to let my deep-seated insecurities take this personally. I’ve had him almost every day for 21 freaking years. Others deserve his attention for awhile.
 
I won’t see him again for a year or two. That’ll be hard. But we both have major goals to achieve. He’s already said that he wants to take me back permanently with him when he visits again. Well, that won’t happen unless I meet my goals first. My family apparently wants me to come back, too. This shocked me. I haven’t seen them in a decade and I get they’ve missed me (and yes, it’s mutual), but they’re not typically emotional like that. Maybe he’ll be a good influence on them.
 
Time will tell if I can dodge life shit for the next couple years and actually make progress for a change. But I’m gonna give it one hell of a shot. Go optimism!

 

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