tHe haPPy grOUch

tHe haPPy grOUch

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Once again I find myself saying... I haven't written in quite some time... I haven't written a blog really, since August. I've just written about losing the boys, Anselmo and Hercules.

And that still pains me. Every. Goddamned. Day.
I just had a little crying jag over Herc earlier this morning, actually.
It seems I had just begun feeling normal again after losing Sel, that I made the heartbreaking decision for Hercules. I knew it was coming. Some would even say I waited too long. I don't feel that way. I hate myself for it. I don't feel it was "humane" or "fair" or "selfless" or "kind" or any of those other stupid adjectives.  I'll never find peace with my decision to end his life.
And his absence has created a giant void in my life. My other half is gone.
I just keep trudging through the days.

Work, do errands, work, feed the dog, go to band practice, cook, laundry, work, dishes, feed the dog..
Eat, sleep, wake up.
And so on, and so on.

Work is good. I actually feel at home at my little bar on the corner now. I've carved a niche there. Created relationships with my customers and coworkers. I feel comfortable. I enjoy it.
In fact, if I could work more without missing Dawson so much, I would. I think I would work every damn day. But, I only have Dawson here three/four days a week. And I try to be present as much as possible those nights. As it is, I miss him terribly when he;s gone to his dad's. Ten years, and I still haven't grown accustomed to it. Thursday mornings when I drop him at school, knowing that I won;t see him again until Sunday night, sometimes Monday... It's not unusual for me to leave the school a bit teary eyed every Thursday. Like I said, ten years and I'm still not used to it. I guess I never will be.

My daughter is still living here at home, technically. Although we rarely cross paths.
That "relationship" has me quite perplexed. And sad. And angry.
I raised her on my own. We were so close. We had each other throughout the years, and that's all that mattered. She walked the straight and narrow, she was an honor roll student, she was kind and smart and beautiful and loving and dedicated and selfless... and all of those things you would hope for in a child. She is still all of those things, for the most part; but she is different. In fact, I'll be damned if I don't even know her at all anymore. Sometime last year, about this time actually, she turned into someone that I am not familiar with. It's shocking, and sad, and sometimes frightening.
Is this what happens when your children turn into adults? Is this what I will feel as my son grows? I pray it isn't my fate with him as well. Where did I go wrong?

I miss my dad. I don't know how to express that any clearer. Losing a parent too soon, losing a parent at all, I suppose. It's something you can't possibly understand until you suffer through it.
But its more than just that... My dad... no matter how he lived, no matter how much he drank, how disruptive it was for our lives... I loved and idolized him, even while I was angry with him for his addiction. He was like me. The only person, probably, who I could relate to. He knew me.
I miss him so much. Every day.

Finances have me pretty down as well. This house, as wonderful as it is, seems to be sucking the life out of us. And the holidays are coming...

Mother always said that I have a hard time around the holidays. I guess it was/is a noticeable pattern. Seasonal, cyclical, bipolar, call it whatever you'd like. The holidays always put me in a constant flux... jumping back and forth between excessively excited and clinically depressed.

I feel disconnected. From life.

I have to go get ready for work. At least while I'm working I feel a purpose.

The Story of Hercules... (written 10/25/14)

Couldn't sleep much last night. Couldn't sleep this morning. I guess I probably won't get much sleep at all this weekend. Knowing that Monday is coming... the appointment is coming...

Yes, this is going to be another lengthy post about Hercules.
Truth is, I could write pages and pages and pages about Hercules. In fact, I have. He has his own lengthy page on my old Dane website (a google site called Fitz Lane Danes). I kept an account of his battle with all of his medical issues.. IMHA (Immune Mediated Hemolytic Anemia), Wobblers, growth plate abnormalities, and his elbow and hip dysplasia. I started that blog back in April of 2010, when Herc was just 8 months old, and first diagnosed with IMHA. My last entry was three years later. I haven’t updated it in over a year. I guess it just became easier to update on facebook.

Many of you already know his story… How I lost his mother during a c-section. How we hand raised him and his 10 siblings as our own babies… Bottle feeding around the clock, cleaning them, keeping them warm, making them pee and poop (since puppies can’t on their own when they are first born), teaching them how to eat “puppy mush”, showing them the wonders of the outdoors, teaching them their manners… Little Hercules had a herniated umbilical cord at birth. Which simply meant, it wouldn’t stop bleeding. We had to hold a cornstarch and iodine compress on his little belly for 24 hours after he was born. And that was the beginning of the bond that made us keep him as our pick of the litter. I was the mother to that litter, to Hercules, quite literally.

And first came the IMHA, when Herc was about 7 months old… He fell mysteriously ill. Had some weird swelling, lethargy, wouldn’t eat, slight temperature... The ONLY reason our vet was able to properly diagnose IMHA, was because one of his littermates had just died from the disease, and was also treated at our vet. Unfortunately, IMHA is very difficult to diagnose, sometimes it’s only recognized in it’s last stages, when the dog has already lost the majority of it’s red blood cells. IMHA has a very poor outcome and high mortality rate. We were quite lucky. Our only hope was to transport him to the hospital in Scarborough. My mother gave me one of her credit cards, and said- “save him”. Thank god for her then. So, I spent a few days in southern Maine with Herc. We had caught it in time so that he fortunately didn't need blood transfusions. He was heavily medicated for several days, and we were able to finally take him home, with a long list of medications. Sidenote… while I was in southern Maine, I shopped a bit while waiting for Herc one day. I bought a sign that said “Miracles Happen”. It’s still hanging on my wall.
Herc stayed on prednizone to suppress his immune system for the following few years. We had red blood cell checks every couple of weeks for a while, then once a month, then every couple months, etc, etc.. Until we were finally able to see a normal range of red blood cells.

During this time, Herc began to develop some growth plate abnormalities in his front legs. Basically, the growth plates in the “wrists” won't close, allowing the inner long bone of the leg to continue to grow and grow. The condition causes the feet to turn grossly outward. There were surgeries available for this, but they are not always successful. And with Herc’s compromised immune system, he was not a candidate for surgery. So we simply had to hope for the best.

And then, as we weaned him off the prednizone, he started displaying signs of Wobblers. Wobblers Syndrome is a neurological disorder that is caused by malformation of the cervical vertebrae, resulting in a wobbly gate and weakness (and eventually paralysis) in the limbs. It’s most commonly seen in horses, Great Danes, and Doberman Pinschers.
Wobblers is typically diagnosed with MRI, but Herc’s xrays (read by multiple doctors, and the OFA- Orthopedic Foundation for Animals), and his symptoms, were enough to make a firm diagnosis. His xrays also showed moderate hip and elbow dysplasia.
And of course, there were surgeries available for all of those as well. Wobblers surgeries are very risky, and there are most definitely no guarantees. And then there were the growth plates, the elbow dysplasia, and the hip dysplasia. Hercules would basically need to be completely re-engineered. Even if we had tens of thousands of dollars, putting him through multiple surgeries would have been nothing short of inhumane.

And so, we continued with the prednisone, which is the most successful anti-inflammatory when treating Wobblers and dysplasia. We moderated his exercise over the years, tried some herbal treatments, supplements, acupuncture, whatever we could think of. All to make him comfortable and extend his years with us.

And then, in February of 2012, Herc decided we just hadn't had enough yet… He ingested one of his stuffed toys. 30 staples and a few thousand dollars later, Herc was well again.
Almost exactly one year later, he managed to get his mouth on yet another toy (I thought I had rid the house of them!). A day in the hospital, a barium series (barium swallows, followed by a progression of multiple x-rays), a few different medications, and several hundred dollars later, Herc was able to expel that one on his own.
Damn god… (shaking my head)...

For the last couple years, we have watched a slow and steady decline in his mobility. Fewer trips to Petco, fewer soccer games, less exercise… More prednizone…
Last winter I watched him struggle terribly trying to get around in the snow and ice. I knew in my heart it was the last winter I was going to have with him. And then, over this summer, we watched as he rapidly degenerated. He started falling regularly. Staggered grossly while walking. Refusing to get up off his bed unless there was food involved, or unless we made him. I’m actually not sure how we’ll get him into one of our vehicles. He’s too unstable to use his ramp. I suppose we will have to team lift him...

And then we unexpectedly lost Herc’s father, Anselmo. How devastating that was. I always said that even though Anselmo was a senior citizen as far as Danes go, he was going to long outlive his son. He became mysteriously and suddenly ill, and xrays showed a large tumor sitting on top of his heart, pinching off his esophagus. How painfully ironic, how horrible, that while I was preparing (or trying to prepare) to lose my Hercules, that I would also lose my Anselmo.

Herc is now almost completely immobile. He lays on his bed all hours of the day, like I mentioned, unless it’s time to eat, or unless we make him go outside. Even then, most of the time we have to hoist him up. He doesn’t always stay upright, either. His front legs, or hind legs, give out on him, resulting in a split. Sometimes they simply crumple under him and he falls/lays back down. Watching him walk is painful. It takes him several minutes to get from one short point to another, his legs shake from toe to top, his feet slide apart (even on a gripped surface), he appears hunched over and bowed in the middle… And yet, he still exhibits no signs of pain. He never grumbles or cries. Yet, he must be pained. How horrible that I just can’t tell.

And that’s another thing… People always say things like- You will know when it’s time... You’ll look into his eyes and he’ll tell you… When his quality of life is suffering, it’s time… Bla, bla bla… But I DON’T know. He’s NEVER told me. And who’s to say his quality of life is all that bad? He still wags his tail, still lets us know he loves us, still eats and voids, still seems, well, somewhat happy… Should I wait until the day comes when he just can’t get up, or can’t stay up?
I just don’t know if it truly is “the right thing”, the “kind” thing, the “selfless” thing...
What if it’s not?? What if he’s not ready to go yet??
I don't know if I’ll ever be able to live with this decision.

And people also say- they understand. But they don’t. To raise a pup from birth as your own baby… He’s not just a dog. Everyone says that about their dogs... I brought him into this world. I hand raised him from day one, when he had no other mommy. He is my child.
And we have lived through SO much together… His multiple health issues over the years.. my horrible break-ups, job loss, poverty, losing my home… On top of being my son, he has been my one and only true companion and best friend, through some of the very worst times of my life.

I’ve said it before.. I don’t know how to deal with this. I just don’t. My coping skills have left the building. My heart hurts.

...Hercules was euthanized on October 27th. My daughter and son and I, the ones who birthed him and raised him, were with him in his final moments. We held him and told him we loved him as he took his last breaths.
And I am forever changed. I live every day with a giant, painful void. And I have yet to fin any peace in my decision to end his life.
I miss my best friend. Life is cruel.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

8/27... The story of Sel..

It's been less than 24 hours since I lost my Anselmo. I've now calmed down enough to write about it. I know everyone says- it takes time... But I'm not sure that I'll ever grow accustomed to him not being here. I may be at peace with my decision- Sel was so very ill, and he would have gotten rapidly worse. But I will never be at peace with the idea that he is gone.

I still scoff at the irony of it all... We knew that Hercules was degenerating rapidly from the Wobblers syndrome (and his other orthopedic issues). We were trying to emotionally (and financially) plan for his looming euthanasia... if one can ever truly "prepare" for that.. But to have both boys fail at nearly the same time?? How ironic, and unfair, and horrible.

...We welcomed Sel into our home in February of 2011, when my friend and fellow breeder decided to retire him from her breeding program. Sel is Herc's father, and was the mate to my Liberty (RIP), and so the decision to have him come live with us was an easy one. Sel quickly transitioned into our family as if he had been living with us his entire life.

He was a WONDERFUL boy. So well mannered, even tempered, and well behaved; he put all other dogs to shame. He was goofy and loving, yet he had a stoic, quiet side as well; one that I could relate to. He was old and wise and mature, yet still encompassed the breed standard of being loving and happy and jubilant. While Hercules was always our friendly goofball (he would probably welcome an intruder with kisses and tail wags), Sel was our protector and guardian.
And he had the patience of a saint. Tolerant of all the kids and visitors that would come in and out of our home, the cats, various puppies, rescue dogs.. and even with Hercules, who would growl and push him out of the water bowl, every.. single.. time.
He was full European, which was something that took some getting used to. Sel had the GIANT jowls of his mastiff ancestors. Now, we were used to some slobber on the floors, walls, and windows, but MAN, this dog could fling it, with force, onto our 10 foot ceilings! I swear, he had at least a ten yard radius! I can't count the number of times we'd have to say- "Sel.. NO!", as he was approaching our lap, with foot-long cords of slimy, thick, gelatinous drool hanging from his mouth. But his droopy jowls, and eyes, and face, all added to his overall charm. He was a picky eater from the get-go. He was very specific about what treats he would and wouldn't eat. Every time we went to Petco, I'd have to take Sel, to make sure we got treats that he'd actually like. He was finicky like that. He hated taking pills or supplements, that was always a challenge. Most times I'd have to reach my hand down into the depths of his giant, slobbery maw, and force them down... Stubborn old man.

And he was my 12 year old son's favorite. He said so, and it was evident. I don't really know why, but he was. ~I'll mention here, that while in the exam room in those final moments, I kept urging Dawson to come sit with all of us next to Anselmo... He wouldn't, he just stood up against the wall on the other side of the room. And then, Sel, all doped up from the initial "relaxing" dose, got up, and went to him. Put his head between Dawson's legs, as he always did. It was a simple gesture, and yet, in that moment, was so very profound.

We always marveled at how healthy Anselmo seemed for his age, remarking how he would long outlive his son. He had so much energy still. He loved to run around in the yard, go walking around the neighborhood, trips to the dog park, and car rides to Dunkin Donuts, or the bank, or anywhere..

And then, approximately two weeks ago, he started vomiting, completely out of nowhere. With the vomiting came lethargy, diarrhea, and a lack of appetite. Our first vet visit was just to check his blood panel and vitals. That's when Dr. Richie noticed the elevated heart rate. Otherwise, everything seemed normal, including his blood panel. We took Sel home with a prescription for the diarrhea, one for the vomiting, and a beta blocker to regulate his heart.

It was over the next few days that Sel started the rapid downward spiral. He became obviously more miserable, refused to eat (he hadn't had a meal in four days), continued having diarrhea.. His coat started shedding profusely, and looked dull and dingy. He had a constant flow of mucous from his eyes. He had lost a total of 13 pounds. I knew in my heart and in my gut that it wasn't something treatable, although I still clung to the hope that it was...

Upon seeing him yesterday, Dr. Richie concurred; this was end of life behavior. But I still wanted the x-rays. I HAD to know for sure that there wasn't something more we could do. I needed definitive. And we got definitive.
The x-ray showed a large mass growing on and around the top of his heart and pinching off his esophagus. This would explain the inability to eat, and the electrical disruption of the heart (causing the highly elevated heart rate). It had obviously not grown overnight. It could have been there for weeks, months, even years, just growing. We never knew. Sel had never been sick, and so there was never any reason over the years for x-rays or diagnostic testing. The tumor had simply finally reached that critical size.
And there was nothing more that could be done, other than to humanely allow him to go peacefully.

And here I sit on my porch, with his son Hercules, and his grandson Phineus at my feet. His and Liberty's legacy.
I miss him so very much.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Has it really been nearly two months since I've written? How odd.
(I just now realized that my last blog started out with that exact same line)
There seems to be a pattern forming. Long ago, I would write daily. Then it became twice a week or so, then once a month, and now, well, a whole lot less.
Funny, that's the typical pattern for me with most things I am passionate about. I read books, no- I devour books. Then I'll go a year without picking one up. I make soap or candles or various other crafts, spend hours a day toiling away at the hobbies. Then, I just quit. College, jobs, relationships, hobbies, bands... I could list countless examples, and the stories would all be the same. Start something- and not finish it.
Well, except dogs, I never lose interest in dogs.
Huh.

Anyway...

I guess today I'll just vent. I've actually needed to for some time. And since I'm no longer seeing my therapist, it seems there's no other outlet than this blog.
So, on with it.
This will probably be a lengthy one; get comfy.

I miss my dad. It's been just over a year he's been gone, and it feels like an eternity since I've seen him, hugged him, talked with him. I think of him every day, still. Sometimes with fondness. Sometimes in anger. Him leaving us could have been prevented. He had the power to be well, to live. And yet, he chose not to. He chose to continue slowly killing himself. Addiction is a disease, yes. But I believe that we have the power to fight it. Dad certainly did; he was the strongest man I ever knew. And he had the support system, well, for the most part. He had us. But he chose.
People wonder why I have such strong opinions about alcohol, or substance abuse/addiction in general.
I watched it kill my father. That's why.
How ironic that I work as a bartender.

Speaking of work..
I work hard. I am honest. I don't f&%k around. I'm getting paid to work, and that's what I do. I don't wear next-to-nothing. I don't drink (or do anything else) with my customers. I'm not wild and crazy. I'm not the "funnest" bartender ever, and certainly not the most popular. I just do my best to do what I'm getting paid to do, and be "fun and friendly" without going overboard. I don't care if the workplace is a bank or a bar; there has to be some level of professionalism and dignity at work.
And yes, sometimes I hate what I do. (Probably because of aforementioned issues). But sometimes, you see things in a bar that aren't sad and pathetic and disgusting. Times like yesterday, when I watched the Exiles gather in massive numbers to honor one of their brothers who had passed. Now, I don't know anything about biker clubs, or the way they operate, but I sure as hell know about losing a family member. And yesterday was so moving, even to me, an outsider. Yesterday, just being their bartender was an honor.


 


Yesterday was stressful too, though. Not because of work, but because my oldest fur-baby was at the vet. Sel has been sick for about a week now, vomiting, and acting lazier than usual. Logan took him, and kept me updated while I was working. His blood and stool samples came back normal, but he did have a very high heart rate. Oddly, the last time he had a "spell" where he was lethargic and not eating, his heart rate was also elevated (I check the dog's vitals whenever they are acting funny.. yes, I am over-concerned). Tachycardia is treated with a beta blocker, and he will probably remain on it for the rest of his life, however long that may be. He is a senior citizen at 8 1/2 (life expectancy of a Dane is 7-10 years). I suspect his heart will fail him eventually. But hopefully not soon. I couldn't bear losing both my older boys...
...Because then there's Hercules, who is progressively getting worse, almost daily. The Wobblers, Hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, and growth plate abnormalities in his front legs are all finally starting to do him in. He hobbles around when he is up, and lays on his bed most of the day, rising only to eat or go outside to go potty. He is only 5, and the absolute love of my life. I cannot stand thinking about the decision we will have to make soon. But I know that once the snow comes, Herc won't be able to get around outside.
Damn dogs. They break my heart.
But the pup is doing well, good old Phineus. He's such a pain in the ass. But he is Herc's nephew, and the grandchild to my Sel and Liberty. The one last link to my legacy, and the memories of my beloveds. I fear he will be the only one in the house, all too soon.

And all these unexpected vet bills... dentist/orthodontic bills, vehicle repairs, unexpected expenses, higher-than-normal utilities, etc, etc, etc... has made living financially this summer extremely stressful. This house, as much as I love it, is the most expensive home we've ever had. And winter is coming (as they say in Game of Thrones)... I often wonder how we will afford to heat it. We couldn't afford any trips with the kids this summer. Or many fun things at all, really. That makes me sad. Yes, they have a nice home, they have our love, bla bla bla... But you and I both know that kids don't see things the same way as we adults do. They don't recognize and appreciate those things, as we do. I feel awful that Dawson will go back to school, and when asked- "what did you do for fun this summer?", he will have nothing much to report. I wish I could do more for them.
Groceries, necessities, house payment, medical bills, vet bills, utilities... and just barely covering those, scrounging to be sure they are all taken care of. Nothing extra, nothing that isn't absolutely needed. I've spent most of this summer stressing about money. Every day, lately. Living paycheck to paycheck, barely, as many other folks do. It has not been terribly enjoyable.

Speaking of this house... Even as expensive as it is, I am in love with it. Now, if I could pick it up and put it in the middle of a field, it would be even better.  :)  I am still trying to adapt to neighborhood living. All those years out in the country, and now I have neighbors. Yuck! No mowing the lawn in my pajamas anymore. And next week begins my commuting every day back and forth to Glenburn to get Dawson to and from school. That should be fun.

Speaking of Dawson... Earlier this summer when I was writing, he was choosing to stay primarily at his dad's house. That phase has passed, thank GAWD. He's been staying here with us all week, as usual. Sometimes even choosing to stay through the weekends, and spend more time with us. Although, I worry that once school starts, he will want to be at dad's more again, to hang out with his Glenburn friends. I don't know. I guess we'll wait and see. But I have been loving the time he's here. And even though I've been "sharing" him for several years, I still hate to see him go every weekend. I don't know if I'll ever get used to that, I guess.

Logan technically moved back home with us this spring, after living with her father's side of the family last year. Although, I rarely see her. She spends most nights at her friends' houses, or god knows where. She doesn't talk to me much. She is in the throws of that age where everything is all about her. She's living her life, making her own choices. She can do that now, she's an "adult". It's all quite frustrating. Half the time I'm angry with her, and the other half I'm consumed with worry. Damn kids.

There's talk of a potential musical endeavor. But that's all it is right now; talk. I do miss performing. I don't know if I could do it again or not, realistically, for several reasons. But it's fun to think about.

Well, I guess I've wasted enough of the morning, and had enough coffee to become one of the living. Gotta go buy dog food, and poop scoop the yard before work.
Living the dream.


Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Has it really been almost two months since I last wrote? How odd.
It's not like there hasn't been fodder for writing, or I haven't had time... Lord knows I have plenty of both.
Anyway...

Dawson has finally come back home after choosing to spend two weeks with his dad.
We had been butting heads a bit the last time he was here (thank you, puberty), and evidently he felt like he needed a break.
The last two weeks have been miserable. I missed my boy, my baby. He hardly spoke to me.
I suspected this was coming, eventually. Dad has the cool house... four-wheelers, bonfires, guns, tools, and all that fun boy crap. And the whole father-son thing that he probably needs at this age. Not to mention, his new girlfriend lives next door to dad. That's something I certainly can't compete with.
Sigh.
But this past Sunday, he decided he was ready to come back. Finally. Thank GAWD.
I've been pretty much mauling him ever since.



Today is the one year anniversary of my father's death.
As I wrote on Facebook...
I will not drink a Coors light today...
One year ago today, around 10:30am, I was on my way to see dad, as I did every day. I went with heavy heart instead of hope. We knew the end was close.
My sister texted me... "Hurry".
My car practically flew into the hospital. I slammed it into gear, threw my keys to the parking attendant, and bolted for the doors.
"Two Tickets to Paradise" was playing on the radio. I'll never forget that.
Again the text came. "Hurry..."
I ran through the hospital. Willed the elevator to go faster. Ran down the hall to his room.
They were at his bed, holding his hand, stroking his face, silently crying.
I grabbed his free hand. He choked down a ragged breath. Pause. And another.
And then, he was gone.
I remember what Aunt Laura said to me years ago, when I was the first to get to the nursing home when my grandmother passed... "Make sure you tell her it's okay to go, or she will hover"...
I don't know that I believe in those kinds of notions, but in that moment, the memory of that advice was strong. And so, I kissed him on the head, and whispered...
"I love you.. Now get outa here. You're free".
And I haven't been the same since.
I have a terrible capacity for remembering things. But that day, one year ago today, will always be far too clear.
Unlike Father's day, or his birthday, or Christmas... I will not toast to him. I do not consider it his re-birth, or anything holy or divine, or even remotely worth celebrating. It is the anniversary of the day he was taken from me.
I will not drink a Coors light today.
I am just going to simply try to get through the day. Nothing special, nothing out of the ordinary, just the same mundane existence as every other day.
But I miss him. So very, very much.

Me and my Dad

I've been torturing myself lately with thoughts of Herc's young nephew. Herc's sister, Ellie, had a litter of pups in May. They will be ready to go next week. In that litter, there is a beautiful harlequin boy who is coincidentally still unspoken for. He has gorgeous blue eyes, and a black mask down his hind leg; much like his uncle Herc.
Ellie was the only pup of my litter in 2009 that I sold with breeding rights. She was actually part of my stud fee. Ellie (and Herc, of course) were born of Anselmo, who was at that time a stud dog, who has been retired and living with us since 2011. And of my Liberty Bell (who passed during birth), the first great dane I owned, the one dog I loved more than anything, until her son, my Hercules.
Ellie had a litter a couple years ago, and I reserved a pup from that litter, a merle female. We were going to name her Belle, after her grandmother. She unfortunately had an esophageal disorder which caused her to pass before she was ready to go home.
Ellie and Herc are now 6, and this will be Ellie's last litter. My last connection to my Liberty Bell. And to my Herc, who is now so very near the end of his young life, due to his multiple debilitating orthopedic issues. The last of my legacy, and the true loves of my life.
So, "Just a dog"? No.
Unfortunately, in some cruel and ironic joke, the universe paired me with a man who couldn't be farther from my ideal match in this particular aspect. And I don't say that with anything more than funny sarcasm.
Evidently, in one of my desperate moments when we were apart, I agreed to to no more big dogs. It was probably one of those moments during our separation/reconciliation where I would have said just about anything to keep him in my life.
Silly me.
And as much as he cannot understand my position in this, I cannot understand his either. But I try to...
Not everyone has love for a large dog who sheds, drools, takes up space, and costs money for life (the bigger the dog, the bigger the vet bills). Especially when there are already two others in the house (In my defense, however, on that last point, Herc will probably not be able to survive another winter, and Sel is a senior citizen, who probably won't much outlive his son).
But again, I agreed. No more big dogs.
And it is now a constant point of contention.
     
Herc as a pup
 
Herc's Nephew  


In other news...

In 9 days we will be moving into our new home.
I am excited, stressed, anxious, and terrified, all at once.
I can't wait to walk the dogs in that beautiful neighborhood. To watch the kids ride their bikes. To enjoy the screened in porch in my back yard, tend to all the flowering plants, sit next to my wood-stove on a chilly night, soak in the garden tub... and hopefully, finally feel at home and at peace.


I guess I could have just used pictures to tell my story today.

Off to get through the day.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

I've got so much more to do over the next 24 hours to be finished moving out of this house.
And yet, here I sit. Procrastinating.

I sleep in Glenburn for the last time tonight.
How bizarre.

Change is hard (God, that is such a gross understatement).
I've always claimed to be a person who thrives under stress. I roll with the punches like the best of em... It's not until you're given extraordinary circumstances that that theory is truly tested. Oh, I've been through much worse than this... Dad dying, divorces, unemployment and poverty... and survived them. I know, this is probably minimal compared to those, and is certainly minimal compared to some horrible circumstances that other people have to live through. I get that, I know.
But for some reason, this particular life circumstance has me quite unraveled.

I worry about Dawson.
He said to me this week, somberly- "This will be the last time I sleep in this house. Tomorrow is my last day riding bus 18..."
I try, of course, to validate his feelings, and explain how fortunate we are for so many reasons... that we've found such a nice home and neighborhood, how nice it will be with all of us together as a family again, that living at the apartment for a couple months will be "fun", like a mini-adventure, how very fortunate he is to not have to change schools all-together... I try to stay positive, to help him stay positive. I often wonder if it works; I don't know how convincing I am.
He unfortunately hears things from his father that add to his stress... "Dad says the judge's order states that you can't move out of Glenburn" (which is horseshit, by the way)... "Dad's not real happy that we are moving"... I wish his father would realize that these conversations only cause more stress for Dawson. Lately, I've felt as if I'm constantly fighting his father's negative influence. I wish he would put his personal feelings aside and try to help Dawson through this transition, regardless of how he feels about it. God knows he's had some "situations" of his own, ones that I've felt pretty strongly about too. But a parent should be mature and caring enough to leave judgement and opinion out of it, and act in the best interest of their child.
Oh, if only. In a perfect world.
Sigh.

I worry about the dogs. Moving is as stressful, if not more, on animals than it is on humans. It's a fact, unfortunately. And my poor dogs have to move twice, too. Herc is already so physically unstable, and Sel is a senior citizen... I worry so much that the stress will put both of them in even poorer health.

I worry about mother. She has had me next door to rely on since Dad died... to mow her lawn, to come down and get leftovers, or just for that feeling of having me next door. I know she'll be fine. But I know she is also sad.

I worry about me. Weird, I know. I worry that I will not feel "at home" when I move. The last time I moved out of Glenburn (my last brief marriage, several years ago), I was constantly homesick. It's not like I have a ton of friends out here, or that I feel connected to this community or anything, because I don't... Is it simply geographical? I don't know what it is. Back then, it was that my sister lived out here, my parents, my grandmother.. that Logan had switched schools, that the faces at softball weren't familiar anymore... I don't know.
Will I be happy? Will I be miserable? Will I thrive, or sink?
This time is different of course (in many, many ways). Dawson will still be going to school here, and will still be involved in sports here (Man, I sure will be doing a lot of driving...). So hopefully that will help. Let's face it, he only has two more years here in Glenburn anyway. And then it's another school system somewhere else (since we will still have choice of high schools). And this time, I'm moving into a house that my husband and I have chosen together, not something that one of us already has claim to. That should help, for the both of us.

And speaking of my husband, I worry about us, too. We've had such a go of it over these last couple years. It seems that every six months or so, we have some kind of upheaval,. Either something life throws at us that we just can't conquer, or something more subtle, like a slow, quiet, deadly distancing. That second one is probably the one I fear the most. I dreamt about it this morning, actually. What a horrible way to wake...
I worry too much. I probably focus too much on our failures than our successes. We have plenty of each... We also have love. I've lost my belief in the strength of love so many times, that it's difficult to remember always, that it is a powerful thing. I have to try to maintain my faith in it.

Alright, I suppose I've wasted enough time being melancholy.
I need to go finish lugging the last bits and pieces out to my portable storage unit. And then go to work.
And then come back here, for one last sleep.


Friday, April 25, 2014

Well, since I couldn't sleep, I'll blog.

I did sleep, fairly soundly for 2 or 3 hours. Then came the fast moving cycle of awake, asleep, awake, asleep... etc, etc, etc. Then, in between the awake parts, was this strange dream...  I can still see it as a movie, but can't properly recall it in writing. It looked a lot like the old Mad Max movies, weird surroundings, costumes, strange vehicles, battles...   It was about a group of people trying to get somewhere. I don't even know what our destination was, but we were traveling. I remember feeling very afraid in most of it, just trying to stay alive and get to our end point. I don't know if we ever did; I woke up.
Yes, easily psycho-analyzed, I know.
Funny that my brain made it into something like Beyond Thunderdome...


I am still frustrated that my hours are being cut at my "other job". First Wednesdays, and soon to be some Fridays. Wednesdays I won't miss. It's the last day of the week that I have Dawson, and I'd much rather spend that precious time with him. And one day doesn't hurt the purse too badly. But Fridays too?? Perhaps as often as every other??? Now, it's no big secret that I have been less than thrilled with this job, but it's a job, and I need that. And I work hard (and honestly) when I'm there. And still, I am the outcast. I don't fit in. I'm not part of the pack. 

Off topic... I had an "I miss my dad" moment last night. Completely random. Well, not completely... Troy and I were watching a DVR'd episode of "Fargo" (delightfully weird show, by the way!)... They started talking about gum, Hubba Bubba, to be exact... And I nearly choked on my dinner. That was always how Dad greeted Dawson.. "Hi Dzadzu!", Dawson would say... "Hubba Bubba!", Dad would reply...
It's those little things that come out of the blue and get you, right in the gut. I miss my dad. A lot.

The move to Troy's apartment has been painfully slow. I'm still in Glenburn, for now. But we hope to make the move this coming week. Most of our things are packed, and we've lugged a lot of it down into the garage. Still, nothing has made it's way into the portables! Waiting for extra helping hands to get the big stuff into them first (hutch, entertainment center, dressers, etc). The entertainment center itself weighs about 400 pounds. Yuk... I still may need to rent one more portable. Still looking for bodies this weekend to help us lug stuff. Troy looks big and strong, I know. And as much as he'd love to think he can move it all single-handedly, he's not supposed to be doing any of it. Between his back and his heart, he simply can't. So, we need help. 

Speaking of moving... I hate to even mention it (for fear of cursing ourselves), but it appears that we have a house all nailed down. We've been working on it for a month or so now. Oddly, it was a man who responded to my "housing wanted" ad on Craigslist, rather than something that was advertised. His family lives in Vermont, but he owns a home in Veazie. Him and I have been talking via email and phone, and his current tenants finally were able to show us the house this week. We loved it, and we love the neighborhood. We spoke again with him on the phone and nailed down some details. He seems like a very reasonable landlord, and a very nice man. We have sent him our references, and he is preparing a three year lease (we wanted long-term). It's a very large, beautiful colonial in a wonderful cul-de-sac neighborhood. The house isn't ready until July 1st. So, the waiting begins.


I am not happy about having to move twice, sending my dogs to my mother's temporarily, storing all my stuff, living in an apartment for two months.... But I just keep reminding myself- the end is worth the means. A temporary inconvenience, all for the greater good.

And I'm trying (albeit perhaps unsuccessfully) to be one of those people who counts my blessings every morning I wake up...
I woke up today (even though I hardly slept). I have two jobs (for now). I'm not homeless (yet). My daughter's not pregnant (that I know of)...
I jest, of course.
I woke up, I'm breathing, I'm alive! My kids are healthy and well cared for, and happy (most of the time!). I have one job and work family that I love. I have a wonderful husband. I have a great family, nuclear and extended. I have at least two very, very close friends, and a handful of extended friendships. I have a beautiful home and neighborhood to look forward to...

Ba humbug.
(*wink*)

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Wow, I haven't written in a while.
Well, I guess that's not entirely true... I had written, twice, I think, and then deleted the posts. Too much, too soon. But fear not, readers, it will be re-written again, all in due time.
But for now, just a quick update for all you voyeurs out there, and a little venting session for myself.

As you all well know, I am still on the mad hunt for appropriate housing for my family.
We had an opportunity recently to enter into a lease agreement on a rent-to-own property. Although the home was nice (albeit a bit small), I just couldn't go into it with a commitment to purchase in two years. Firstly, we probably wouldn't credit-qualify for financing by then, and secondly, the home had an outrageous price-tag. And so, we'd just end up moving again in two years. And as much as it would have solved our immediate housing issue, it just wasn't the right decision for us.
And so, since I have now overstayed my welcome in this house, Dawson and I will temporarily move into Troy's apartment while we continue to look for a home for all of us (We think we have one lined up, but it will not be ready until July 1st).
Although this sounds like a relatively easy solution to our problems, it is by far not so easy...
I am trying to figure out how to move all of my belongings into storage. Or, rent portable storage units to leave here temporarily, IF I obtain permission from the property owner. Either way, I will incur expenses from the storage, and potentially renting a uhaul if I don't use portables.
And then- what fun!- I'll get to pay for a uhaul all over again when it's time to move all the crap to the new house, if I don't use the portables.
The portables come with convenience, but also concern... safety of our items, cost...
So... rent a uhaul and move it all to storage, and then rent a uhal again to move it all out? Or portables? Argh!!!!
Many of you have offered to help, but realistically, we know how difficult it is to gather a group of people and trucks, all at the same time (with everyone's busy lives), and get it all done. It just seems far too overwhelming.
This also means I will have to begin driving Dawson to and from school in Glenburn every day. But then again, I was prepared to do that once we moved out of Glenburn, so it will be good practice for the next couple years.
Not to mention, the dogs cannot come with us to the apartment. Mom has graciously offered to take them into her home for the next few months. Although, she is gone to Portland every other weekend, and so I will have to figure out what to do for the dogs on those weekends. I am hoping Logan will agree to stay at her house every other weekend. I'm sure some cold hard cash will persuade her. I'm also hoping that the boys don't get too confused or stressed out with their temporary living arrangements. Mom's trailer is tight enough with her and her two dogs, and all her stuff, as it is. It's not ideal, but it's our only option.
And moving TWICE. Ugh. Enough said about that.
And hopefully it won't be SO disruptive for all of us (me, Troy, and the kids as well) that we all stress out and kill each other.

~Brief off-topic, speaking of the dogs... Herc's orthopedic issues have gotten progressively worse this winter. He is having a harder and harder time getting around, and yet he is still so happy and goofy... It is SO MADDENING to know that his mind and spirit are still so young, and yet his body is failing him. I am afraid I will have to put him down before another winter comes. I hate this. I am crying just writing it. He has been the one constant man in my life for the last several years; my one consistent source of love and comfort.
Anyway...

These added moving/storage expenses weren't such a panic button until recently... when I discovered that my hours were getting cut at my day job. I have lost one day shift for now (Wednesdays), and will evidently be losing another one (Fridays), perhaps as often as bi-weekly, starting sometime next month. The new owners have decided they want to work those days, so that they have more of a presence there. I understand that. However, there are many shifts to choose from. It stinks that they chose mine. I've suspected that I am "on my way out" there for a while now, since I am the low/new man on the totem pole. But I had hoped that wasn't the case. I feel that I am slowly getting pushed/phased out, as apposed to having to directly fire me.
This couldn't have happened at a more inopportune time for us. Regardless of how I felt about the job, I was fully willing to push forward and make the most of it, since we truly need that income now. Financially, it makes sense for me to look for another job. I guess I will have to.
Sigh.

Besides all the current stressors in life, other things are going pretty okay...
Dawson is doing well, given all the upheaval for us right now. It still amazes me how resilient children are. Of course it gets to him sometimes too, but he has better coping skills than I give him credit for, and probably far better coping skills than I do. He has genuinely missed Troy, and it is obvious how relieved he is that we are a family again. He is looking forward to once again living with his sister. He tells Troy he loves him, unprovoked, every day. It reaffirms my decisions.
Logan is doing well, from what I gather. She is excelling in college, and I am so proud of her. She's back to work now as well, so I will probably see her even less than I already do. I don't know when she grew up and flew the nest. Why does that have to happen?
And Troy and I, well, we probably couldn't be doing any better. I don't know what "clicked" for us this time around, but something did. Perhaps those many months apart were just what we needed... To work on ourselves individually, to recognize the absence of one another, to see the changes we needed to make for ourselves and for each other... Instead of trying to psycho-analyze it (which I always do), I'm just going to try and simply be thankful for it.
Hell, we are both under a TON of stress right now, and we haven't killed each other. That's gotta count for something.  :)

Well, I suppose I've wasted enough of the day. Time to get back to work around here.
Ugh!


Wednesday, February 26, 2014

These are a few quotes I've stolen from a page that I follow on Facebook. They are so simple, yet so powerful. Definitely worth sharing.

By your words and your actions, choose to be a Peacemaker in your marriage. Don't pick fights and don't demand your own way. Out of love for your spouse and family, be willing to take the high road and do everything in your power to bring peace and healing to every situation.
Focusing on your spouse's flaws will do nothing to improve your marriage. If you're going to focus on flaws, start with your own and work to correct them. The only part of your marriage you have the power to change is the part you see when you look in the mirror.
If you focus on your spouse's flaws, their positive qualities will seem much smaller. If you focus on their positive qualities, their flaws will seem much smaller. Choose to see the best in them and you'll be creating a better marriage.
Love and Selfishness can't coexist in the same relationship. They never get along, so you've got to pick which one gets to stay in your marriage. Choose love.
The marriage vow says, "Til death do us part," but too many couples live as though it was, "Til death, or disagreement, or our differences, or financial pressure, or your mistakes, or a better option, or lack of passion, or a change in my feelings do us part." Your commitment to your spouse must always be more important than your circumstances.


Sunday, February 9, 2014

This seems a particularly good addition to my earlier blog...



Saturday, February 8, 2014

You know, most of my life I haven't felt like I've ever found someplace where I "fit"...
Multiple attempts at college, so many different jobs/careers, very few friends, various failed relationships, loose familial ties..
Just that feeling of never having really found my niche, or my "thing", so to speak.
And I don't mean that I don't know myself, because I do; or that I need something to define me, because I don't... Maybe more of finding a purpose or something..
But sometimes, if you're lucky, you meet someone. And suddenly You know.. That they are it. Your niche, your purpose, your thing.
They are where you fit.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

"I wish I wrote the way I thought
Obsessively
Incessantly
With maddening hunger
I’d write to the point of suffocation
I’d write myself into nervous breakdowns
Manuscripts spiralling out like tentacles into abysmal nothing
And I’d write about you
a lot more
than I should"


Saturday, February 1, 2014

It's Dad's birthday, of course I'd write.
But there's more to talk about than just Dad. So let's begin.

I was talking to Troy last night about the loss of our parents. He lost his mother unexpectedly when we first met; it's comforting to have someone close to me that can relate. He mentioned that the holidays were typically harder for him than her birthday, mainly Christmas. They always had such festive holidays, that his Mom was an integral part of. And yes, Christmas this year SUCKED. For a few reasons, but yes, because it was the first Christmas without Dad. However, today seems to be harder for me. Harder than my birthday, or mom and dad's anniversary, or Thanksgiving, or even Christmas. And not because we celebrated birthdays with great pizzazz or anything.. they usually weren't a big deal at all, actually. But because it signifies the day he was born. The day this world was blessed with a boy who grew into a man of great knowledge, compassion, talent, strength, and wicked humor.
My friend has a husband who shares this birthday. She shared a phrase with me that he likes to use...
"All the greats were born in February, and the greatest are born on the first."
I would have to agree with that.
I'm toasting Dad this morning with coffee and a Coors Light. Well, I'm choking down the Coors Light. And (if you believe in that kind of thing), he's somewhere laughing about that right now.
I miss you.

Now, onto other my other current and pressing woe. Because quite honestly, Dad would give me the hairy eyebrow and probably a colorful tongue lashing if I spent the day obsessively depressed over him.

So...

I am mentally prepping for the move. Which may not come for another couple months, but I'm still mentally prepping. Okay, maybe obsessing would be a more appropriate term. Dawson and I have to move, period. And I'm coming to terms with that. It sucks, but it is what it is.
However, it seems a new option has been added to the conundrum. I think. I'm not sure.
You see, my husband has said that he would like us to move back in together soon. Hence the reason why I said "I think" and "I'm not sure".
"I'm not sure" for a number of reasons, obviously.
So the first is- Will it actually come to fruition? Does he actually mean it this time? Does he actually want us to live together again, considering how difficult it (evidently) was for him to live with me before? Or is it something he's just saying because he knows I am constantly walking the precipice of saying goodbye...
And IF he truly means it.. Do I want to? And if I want to do it, can I?
Can I ever trust that history won't repeat itself?
Can I feel secure that he won't decide, once again, that he's unhappy, and wants to walk away?
Do I feel like I/we have what it takes to keep the relationship as healthy and happy as it once was? (Because, let's face it.. it once was beautiful)
Can I forgive, trust, move forward?
Is it right for the children? Is it right for us?
Will it work???
I've spent the last couple of weeks thinking this over. And "thinking" is a gross understatement. I am consumed by it.

Since we started discussing things (the last month or so), I have been unraveling a bit. I compare it to a banana. (Silly, I know).. But it seems the soft, vulnerable, meat of me has been protected by my peels. And, slowly, they're starting to get pulled away. I don't know whether to fight that or not.

We have been through SO much in the last several months. The last couple years, for Christ sake. It has been up and down. A constant struggle.
But in the beginning, for the first couple years, and in between all of those more recent struggles, there was, and still is, an immeasurable, exquisite, once-in-a-lifetime love.
The bottom line is this. Regardless of all of our failures, our mishaps, our soap opera, our (his) mistakes (often times made quite public by Facebook and my blog), Troy has always been the love of my life. That has never been in question. Everyone knows it. He knows it. I know it.
Just as my mother and father were always the love of each others' lives, regardless of their struggles. And God knows Dad put them through quite a few.
That kind of thing doesn't just go away.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a beer to finish.

Be well.








Saturday, January 25, 2014

I said I was going to write today before work. Well, I'm in the parking lot. But it's still technically before work.

I haven't written anything of substance for a while. I've wanted to, but just haven't. Not entirely sure why.

I've been at the "new job" for about a month now.
I've tended bar for a very long time, in a few different venues. This already takes the cake for being the most... Interesting.
The (tip) earning potential isn't quite what I expected, but all together I'm still making a few bucks over minimum wage. I keep telling myself that. Doesn't seem to help though.
The environment is different, too. I've always thought that it is beneficial to work with a diversity of people. I mean, if you were surrounded by people just like you every day, how awful would that be? But then again, what if the people you are surrounded by are SO fundamentally different from you that you literally feel like you're on a different planet?? I don't know. It's really weird though.
And I can't say much more than that. Can you imagine how difficult this is for me?? To have been given such fodder for writing, and not be able to write about it???
Damnit. Oh well.

Kids are good. Well, Dawson is good. I rarely see or talk to Logan, as status quo. I miss her. I think she's back in contact with that douchebag again. I wish he would just disappear.
In the meantime, I'm pouring myself into Dawson. Again, at times I feel like Norman Bates' mother.

I'm seeing my husband again. There, I admitted it. Phew.
I love him, of course, but... there's always the "but"... We are supposed to be getting our divorce in just over two weeks.
I don't know.
That's all I have to say about that. For now.

I have been in a lot of pain off and on for the last couple months. Something going on with my shoulder. No idea where it came from. I didn't fall or injure it, just started basically out of nowhere. And sometimes, the pain is downright unbearable. These last two weeks have been hell. I'm going to break down and see the Doc this week, and probably get back in to my chiropractor.

I'm counting down the days till my dad's birthday. Dreading it. Somehow it's worse than my birthday, or thanksgiving, or even Christmas. Every day is still a struggle with grief.

I continue to think about the impending move. Still have no idea where we will go, how I will possibly find a place with my horrible credit, meager income, my pet menagerie, how I will support us, etc, etc, etc.
It's quite frightening.
Paralyzingly frightening.

Well, time to go to work. Got a ton of pain meds on board, so hopefully it'll be tolerable.

Be well.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

I feel like writing, but I don't have time this morning... have to get to a basketball game.
Maybe I'll vent later.
It'll probably sound a lot like this...


Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Well there, I managed to go a week without writing.

There's been plenty to write about. Really, there's always plenty to write about in my life. Seriously, it's like a poorly directed soap opera. I just haven't managed to put it all into cohesive thought. And it still may not qualify as cohesive today, but I'll write anyway.

Oh yeah, I got a job!!! (Most of you are facebook friends, and already knew this)... So anyway, this is how it happened...

Okay, months of proactive job hunting... browsing online job searches, filling out applications, sending/dropping off resumes, interviews, second interviews.. And then one day, the week before Christmas, I get a text from a friend (and former co-bartender) of mine. She says she's back to work at this little local bar, and they need another bartender. She tells the boss that there's only one person she would trust and be willing to work with- me. So, I call the boss, go meet with her for a whole 5 minutes, and she wants me to start ASAP, and here's the shifts I can choose from. I go home and sleep on it, call her the next day, negotiate a wage and day shifts, and- wham- just like that, I'm employed.
I still think it's ironic (and perhaps karmic) that after a lengthy, militant job hunt, this one just kind of fell in my lap.

So anyway, I started the day after Christmas, this is my third week. It's an interesting little (and by little, I actually mean tiny)  "neighborhood bar". So far, the day clientele is pretty low-key, with the occasional "interesting" characters (aka, obnoxious drunks). The owner has recently taken it back over after a couple unsuccessful lease attempts. It appears that she's digging her way out of some unfortunate circumstances. And she's dealing with a lot of personal issues on top of trying to revive the bar. Everything seems to be a bit chaotic, staffing, finances, etc... But hopefully it'll stabilize soon. It does have great potential.
Hopefully it'll turn out to be a long-term kinda thing.

In the meantime, the other bar I work at also re-opened a couple of weeks ago, and so I am back to work there one night a week, as before. Things are a little chaotic there as well; working out all the glitches of operating a new business. But the transformation of the place is absolutely astounding, the staff has really pulled together under the new owner, and the public response has been tremendous.

And so, being back to work is one of the more monumental events of my so-called soap opera.

Then again, being back to work has it's downfalls, too.
Dawson will now be a latch-key kid a couple days a week. This scares the bejesus out of me. For soooooooo many reasons. What if there's a fire? Or, what if he starts a fire in the microwave trying to make easy mac? What if he hurts himself? What if he falls down the stairs? What if he loses his key? What if.. what if.. what if... I've painted so many ridiculous worrisome scenarios, it's almost enough for me to quit my job and look for something that has school hours. I don't get home till around 6:30, but Mom will come here right when she gets out at 4, so Daws will only be home alone for about an hour. But, STILL... Ugh.
Ugh, ugh, ugh.
He has the option of getting off the bus at his Dad's with his step-brother, but he has decided he's going to get off here and wait for Babchi (my mom, "grandmother" in Polish). We'll see how it goes. This is the first week. I've asked Logan to come here on the days that I am working to be with her brother after school, but she hasn't committed to it.
Thursday's will be the toughest... Thursday is usually when he goes back to his Dad's. We haven't worked Thursdays out yet. He'll either get off here, wait for me to get home, and then I'll take him right to Dad's, or he'll get off at Dad's, and I just won't have him Thursdays anymore. Or, maybe, his Dad and I will work it out so that he stays here some Thursday nights. That would be nice. We shall see.
I hate that I get home from work and only have about 2 hours with my little buddy before I have to put him to bed. Sigh. But, it's only a couple days a week. I do have two days off when he's here, so we'll make the best of it.

Speaking of my little buddy, I've noticed that with all the changes in my life (Logan moving out and Troy leaving), that I've developed a potentially unhealthy attachment to my son. I've always missed him when he goes to dad's, but now it's exaggerated a hundredfold. Christ, I miss him as soon as I put him to bed at night, or when he gets on the bus in the morning. I want to be close to him all the time. I've let him sleep in my bed on occasion. He's always complaining about me hugging and kissing and cuddling him too much (which is partially normal, of course.. he is an adolescent boy, after all). But, I have noted that I'm more (emotionally) dependent upon him lately. I know it's because I'm lonely, and because I've lost a few very important people in my life recently (Dad, Logan, Troy)...
I'll have to be aware, and try not to smother him too much I guess. Try not to make him responsible for being the cure to my loneliness.
Sometimes I feel like Norman Bates' mother.

I see Logan about once a week. I hear from her every couple days or so, and that's usually only because I text her. It's weird. I mean, I know they grow up, eventually move out and on their own. But this is different. She didn't just grow up and go find her own apartment, or move into the dorm. She went to stay with her dad. After years of staying with me and Dawson. My relationship with her has changed. I can't even say it evolved; it's more like disintegrated. Everyone keeps saying the same old things... it's the age, it'll come back around, it'll get better, blah blah blah... In the meantime I get to go on feeling like I've lost my best friend. That's awesome.

And then there's my soon-to-be ex-husband. Whom I continue to try to let go of, and then continue to talk with, spend time with. It's like this weird cycle.
Just when I think I've learned the answer to the age-old question- "When do you know enough is enough?", it turns out, I don't actually know it. Evidently, letting go has never been one of my strong points.

As a whole, everything in my life and in my (near and long-term) future is still so very unpredictable. Where I will live, relationships, jobs... It's all so unsettling. And by unsettling, I actually mean terrifying.
If I were more of a live-in-the-moment kind of gal, that might be a little easier to tolerate.
I guess I have no choice but to "just keep swimming". I just wish the current was a little more calculable.