Thursday, February 27, 2003

Initiate This

It has been discovered that I now come on to my man by turning my back to him, pointing repeatedly at my shoulders and barking "Start rubbing if you want some sex, Sparky!"

Strange, he likes it.

Wednesday, February 26, 2003


Haloscan, oh Haloscan...wherefore art thou you unreliable little...nevermind.

Wednesday, February 19, 2003

Turn and face the

Been a while since I posted. Every day I try to come up with some creatively fantastic excuse for why I haven’t written a word but nothing’s as interesting to me as the truth is. I’m just not so sure you all (all 6 of you) will be as interested in the truth. But what the hell, here it is- I’m tired and we got cable. Of course, cable is contributing to the tired thing. Nothing like spending three hours on the couch watching the tube to make you want to sleep for a month.

There’s also a slightly deeper truth at play here and it’s the fact that my life is about to change again in two weeks. The fact of this change tends to overshadow anything else in my life right now, creating an inner dialog that’s like an obnoxious voiceover for a reality show on Lifetime about a makeshift family trying to get ahead…

I’m making dinner and Chris is running the vacuum around in the living room. As I chop veggies for stir fry a whining version of myself (the sufferer) is practically chanting in my head "better enjoy this while you can Kelly girl, that gorgeous man out there in the living room is only going to be here for two more weeks, then you’re on your own again. Good luck getting Tyler to vacuum and clean the toilet and do the laundry and empty the catbox and do the shopping. What if we never figure this thing out and get it together?"

But this is the point at which I am able to catch the runaway train before it goes speeding down the tracks into the wonderful world of worry and I sit down and breathe deeply and slowly tell myself the facts once again. This happens about 100 times a day right now, but it’s working because I don’t go too far into worry anymore.

Here’s the facts:

Chris can’t find a job. Well, he could find a job at Home Depot for 8 bucks an hour and we don’t really need to explain how that just wouldn’t work…financially, spiritually, mental-healthily…

Chris is running out of savings.

Chris owns his own company with his brothers back there in Ohio, a company that is doing pretty well for itself and is about a year away from being completely solvent…at which point the brothers will all be doubling their salaries.

The job in Ohio is less of a job and more of a calling, a craft, a way of life for Chris.

There doesn’t appear to be anything quite like that here in NY for him and we certainly don’t have the capital for him to start something new.

The cost of living here in NY is about 30% higher than in Ohio.

We have a baby on the way.

I’m not someone who will deal well with having to work full time and leave my infant with a sitter…especially in the job I’m in – I work 12-15 hrs a day 3 days a week…overnight on the last night. Sometimes even longer because it’s a newsmagazine and when we’re at war…which it would appear we are about to be…it turns into 4 days or even 5.

If Chris stays here and takes a shitty job making at best 20-25K—holy shit, that would be so impossible for him to swallow!! And rightly so—then I’d have to keep my job and continue commuting to the city just to pay the basic bills. We still wouldn’t be making enough money to stay in the school district or any of the surrounding ones so Tyler could be with me and his Dad and actually be able to afford to buy a home and pay the ridiculous taxes.

If I quit my job and got something more local I’m looking at a $20-25k paycut-if I could find a job…get in line behind the 12,000 other people in our area who are out of work.

Child care for what I’d need would run us about $1,200 to $1,500 a month. Yeah, um…I haven’t had a performance review or a raise in the 4 years I’ve worked here…and I already spend just about every penny I make on essentials.

So all of these things point directly to what’s shaking down in two weeks…Chris is going back to Ohio to work and to look for a new house. He’ll come back for a week every month until the baby comes, then spend about 2 months with us…at which point I’ll more than likely be packing and moving to Ohio. The part that is undecided is if I’ll be bringing my son with me or not. That’s the part that starts all of the projecting of worry and fantasy…all of the what if’s. It’s where I begin to doubt my ability as a mother or a partner-to feel selfish and irresponsible-to feel like everything I touch turns to shit.

That’s when I break out the above list and read it to myself.

The facts speak for themselves.

It’s what I do with the facts that will shape my life. Will I fight the facts and try to force everyone around me into accepting my vision of what life should be? That’s what I’ve often done in the past. I’m trying something different here. I’m attempting to quietly speak my truth without worrying about anyone elses perceptions. I’m making an effort to listen to what the other players feel without trying to convince them that they have it all wrong. I’m looking as closely as I can to see that thin line that’s drawn between making a choice based on my "wants and needs and beliefs" and seeing that the choice is made for me by the facts of the situation. I can either accept and follow along, trusting that life knows what the hell she’s doing, or I can fight it. I can force the situation to change and then spend the next 3 years cleaning up the mess I created. I’m so sick of cleaning up those kinds of messes.

We told Tyler and then his father last week and all agreed that some serious talking needs to happen. Tyler’s worried that he won’t be able to be with his brother or sister every day. He’s also worried that the other option is leaving his father and his friends and his school. The idea of having to be back to all that driving and flying and visiting is about as appealing as repeating fourth grade to the kid. Having Chris here has made him relax so much. We explained all of the facts to him too-laid it out there for him in numbers and in logistics and he can see that it’s not practical to continue like this. He’s such a brave, wise child who just wants all of us to be together and to be happy. I’m hoping we can all sit down and start the talks next week.

So that’s where I’ve been these past weeks. It’s where I’ll be for a while. I’m shaking in my shorts but I have to trust that it will all work out. In the meantime, the baby’s quite a kicker-active all the time. I’m about 20 weeks and look like I have a soccer ball in my shirt. The nausea has passed and my energy improves a teensy bit every week. I'm still enjoying the newfound cleavage.

Underneath it all-life is good.

Really. It is.

Saturday, February 01, 2003

I KNEW I was forgetting one: In which Molly demonstrates her love of minerals: Now this was one stupid dog. I'm not even going to try to narrate this one, it's just all about the facts. Molly ate her way into an unopened can of Crisco. She ate at least 1/3 of the metal can and 9/10 of the Crisco. She was fortunately well lubed for the return trip. Molly at half a bag (that's like 5 pads) of medium grade steel wool. No, really. She did. The best part, however, is that I had the pleasure of helping her pull it back out of her ass. Too bad she skipped the Crisco chaser with that one.

So I mentioned before that I have 3 cats. I don't want to be one of those people who blogs nonstop about her cats. There's nothing wrong with those people, I just think a lot of them might have a hard time keeping a readership...and as seldom as I'm posting these days, I'm amazed any of you keep coming back! So I'll just tell you a little story about Oliver of the Opposable Thumbs to show you that I understand that cats are NOT any better than dogs.

Oliver has a thing for thumbtacks and pushpins. I don't know if there's a difference between thumbtacks and pushpins or if there is what that might be...but I like both words, so there you go. This big fat cat of mine likes to pull all of the tacks off of my bulletin board, leaving the papers that the tacks held in place in a sloppy pile on the floor. He then takes the tacks and carries them around the house and puts one in every one of my shoes. Oliver has done this more than once. He even found the shoes in the storage closet—the ones that hardly ever get worn. I know this because I pulled on my snowboots and my big toe bled for twenty minutes. Not sure what he's trying to say with his actions, but they speak a hell of a lot louder than words.

Okay, maybe just one more tiny Oliver story. He knows how to turn on the stove. I still can't figure it out, I mean, you have to push the knob in and turn at the same time. The first time he did it I was just sliding into that REM stage of sleep, I heard the immediately by: WREEEEOOOOOOOOOOOW...thudthudthudthudthudthudthud as he went running around the house. He burnt his eyebrows and whiskers down to little charred stumps. The second time he did it I was away at work—for 15 HOURS! I opened the door to my apartment and immediately fell to my knees. The whole place was a thick, nearly impenetrable wall of gas. All I could think as I ran around opening windows and holding my breath was that I left the front door open and my neighbor was going to come out into the hall and light a cigarette…like he always does. I ran screaming "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO" back down my hallway and slammed the door shut. I don’t think anyone heard me-or cared if they did. It took 12 hours to get the place completely aired out and I had a headache for a week. Needless to say the knobs now sit on the counter until they’re needed.

Cats. Feh.