Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Three, um, YEARS?

Holy shit - has it really been 3 years since I've written for this blog?  It's certainly not as if I don't have things to write about... as a matter of fact, a shit ton has happened in the past 3 years.  Let's catch up a bit, shall we?

Shortly after my last blog post, I decided to leave northern California and return to my home state of Massachusetts. I know you're wondering why, so I'll tell you.  I was homesick.  I was stressed out.  I was sad and lonely.  I missed my mom, my sister, my nephews, my friends.  I was living on a farm on a mountain with my husband Jeremy and 2 semi-grown children.  I was afraid to drive off the mountain using the one-lane road that had cliffs on either side of it so I hardly ever left the property and I never once left alone.  Jeremy and I had discussed going to Hawaii for our 20th wedding anniversary, which was in August of 2013 - but Jeremy got engrossed in his work and I let him.  I felt like we were growing apart.  Our relationship felt more "comfortable" than anything else, and I was starting to feel a bit neglected and unappreciated.  I wondered if he'd be happier without me, so he could do the things he said he had dreamed of doing that I had absolutely no interest in, things like buying a sailboat and sailing away for a few months at a time.

My daughter Cassidy was 18 and she was also homesick (mostly for her friends), but California was Jeremy's dream and my son was preparing to enter the Navy, departing from California.  So I told Jeremy that I wanted to move back, but that I thought he should stay.  I felt like if I made him move back, he'd resent me.  I couldn't live with that. So I found a house to rent and Jeremy helped Cassidy and I move back.  He was nothing but supportive and we agreed that he'd visit me and I'd visit him and we'd figure things out.  But then I started thinking that maybe we weren't meant to be together at all - maybe this was a chance for us each to start a new life. I didn't think he loved me anymore - looking back, I think I was pretty severely depressed.  We spent a year going back and forth between MA & CA, all the while I was slipping deeper and deeper into depression.  I pushed Jeremy away but he never once gave up.  

I spent the Winter with no men in the house - Cassidy and I took care of everything.  We shoveled (something I'd never done in my life because Jeremy always took care of that for me), took care of my car (ditto previous statement), and ate what/when we wanted to.  We enjoyed ourselves for a few months, and I was proud of myself for being able to do these things.

When I first came home, I had some savings to live off of.  I immediately started job-searching and it took me about 5 months to find a full-time job that paid a halfway decent salary.  I started my job in July of 2014.  Two months later, I was home alone one morning when I broke a coffee pot and a piece of glass went through the webbing between my thumb & index finger on my right hand (of course I'm right-handed).  It was dark and I was half asleep and when I looked down at my hand, I could not see anything.  I flexed my hand and the wound immediately started spurting blood.  I was terrified - and then I realized I couldn't bend my thumb.  I held my hand to my T-shirt to try to stunt the bleeding and I called 911.  The EMT's came and bandaged up my hand and instructed me to get myself to the ER immediately (they offered to take me in the ambulance but I declined).  Long story short, it ended up that I had severed a tendon and some "pulleys" in my thumb.  I needed surgery and would be unable to care for myself for several weeks.  I was devastated - I had just started my job, I was enjoying the sense of independence that I was feeling, and I had no idea what I was going to do.  I called Jeremy later that day to tell him - he happened to be scheduled to fly here the next day anyway, but asked if I needed him to come that night.  I said no, the surgery was scheduled for Friday and he'd be home by then to help me.   

I firmly believe that things happen for a reason.  Jeremy came home and took care of me for several weeks.  He had to help me shower, wash my hair, prepare & cook every single meal, clean everything - I was helpless.  This was good for both of us - it forced me to let him take care of me and it forced him to realize how unappreciated I had felt.  We started talking, REALLY talking. It took me almost a year to tell him how I really felt and when I did, he was determined to change.  He worked really hard to show me, to prove to me, how much he loved me and cared about me and our marriage.  At first, I thought I was just humoring him by "trying" - I felt like if you had to "try" to make your marriage work, then it wasn't really worth saving.  But I was so wrong.  

Another 2 years have gone by and we just bought our first home - in Massachusetts.  We are happier than we've ever been, and we both dream about returning to California some day.  We talk about our problems - I struggle with this, because I truly hate confrontation and "fighting".  But I realized that holding it all inside and letting it eat you up does nothing but make it worse.  It turns anger or hurt into resentment, and resentment is a terrible thing.  Jeremy works really hard to show me how much I mean to him - he's sent me flowers more in the past 2-3 years than he did in the 20 before that.  :)  We both know that nothing good comes easy, and we believe that our marriage is worth fighting for.  Neither of us are perfect, but we're perfect for each other. 

Oh - and we've already started saving up to go to Hawaii for our 25th wedding anniversary in 2018.  

Peace.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Life is Short

I'm feeling quite nostalgic and melancholy today, bear with me.  I just got home from a visit back East, and my step-dad (papa) was on vacation while I was there.  On his last night of vacation, he got a call from his good friend and partner at work, Sandy, who asked "when are you coming home?"  My mom adores Sandy (and my mom doesn't just "adore" everyone... LOL), and she's one of Papa's best friends.  So we all giggled at that, knowing she missed him at work.  Anyway, I got home late Thursday night.  I found out today that Sandy went walking her dog early Thursday evening and got hit by a car.  She's not expected to make it, and my heart just felt so heavy upon hearing this.  I don't know her, but I know my parents love her and that's all that matters.  I'm keeping her and her entire family in my thoughts and prayers.  I appreciate anyone else who does the same.

Hearing this put me in a somber mood.  I started thinking about how short life is, and how you just. never. know.  You can take precautions, you can live your life safe and comfortable and healthy and BOOM - you get hit by a car less than a block from your own home while walking your damn dog.  So unfair.  But who ever guaranteed fairness?  I'm like the eternal optimist, usually, but some days it's hard to find the silver lining.  Life is truly not fair.  Babies die, children get kidnapped, you lose people you love.  Cancer has struck more of my family and friends than I can even count, mostly over the past 10 years.  Now parents are starting to fall and break bones, have surgeries, die.  I guess that's what happens when we get older, huh?  First our parents, then us.  And lately it seems like every time we recover from one tragedy, another one happens to someone we know.   

Can I push the Pause button for just a freaking second, please?  I was just 21 and now I'm 42 and holy crap, that's half my life gone by in the blink of an eye.  I remember thinking "some day, I'm going to..."  Well, when is some day?  I am starting to understand people who live their lives taking risks, taking chances.  Why not make the most of life, have as much fun as you can and enjoy it, before it's all just gone?  Of course,that doesn't ever mean doing those things at the expense of another person's feelings or life.  No hurting others for your own benefit.  First, do no harm.  But if it harms none, do as ye will.  That's my motto.

Anyway, I also started thinking about just making sure the people I love know exactly how I feel about them.  I would never want to lose someone I love (or have them lose me) and regret that they didn't know what they meant to me.  So I'm probably going to be super mushy and drive my friends and family crazy over the next few months, but I feel like it's important.  Relationships have always been very important to me, and I just feel very strongly that even if I haven't seen or talked to someone for years, that they know they are still important to me and always will be.  And they won't know that unless I tell them.  I think too many of us assume our loved ones know how we feel.  How many times have you heard "she knows I love her"?  or some version of it?  I can tell you from experience that we don't always know.  And that it's so important that we do.  Because isn't that basically what makes us special, makes us humans?  Having feelings, emotions, relationships?  We take it for granted, though, or at the very least we forget.  I'm going to try really hard to always remember, and to make sure the people I love really and truly know that I love them.  Peace.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Relationships

Over the years, I've come to realize that friendships take work just like any other relationship.  You're definitely not always going to agree on everything, even if you agree on most things.  Someone's feelings will get  hurt.  Someone will say or do something stupid, it's inevitable as we're only human.  But someone who loves you, no matter what the relationship, will keep working at it.  I try really hard to be the best person I can be, the best friend/mother/wife/sister/daughter/whatever - to always be here when anyone needs me, and to be understanding and non-judgmental.  But I am only human, and I do make mistakes.  And I know I'm way too sensitive and emotional, and I'm working on that.  So it hurts that I've lost some friends along the way, people I truly care(d) about, but in the long run realized that anyone not willing to put up with me, faults and all, is not worthy of my friendship.  But that doesn't make it any easier to deal with.
I've always gotten along better with guys, and most of my best friends are guys.  But I've had a few really good girlfriends over the years, too.  When a guy is angry about something, he just tells you what's up and you deal with it.  Or he might not say anything at all and just get over it.  But girls hold grudges.  I guess it's because we're more emotional than most guys.
So I heard recently that my cousin Angela is getting divorced.  The first thing that went through my mind was "Ha!  Karma!"  But not 2 seconds later, I felt bad.  Angela and I were very close - we grew up almost like sisters.  She did some terrible things that hurt me and my family when we were in our 20's and we didn't speak for 10 years.  We then got back in touch and worked on our relationship for years, and became super close again... and she did it again.  In the process she also destroyed my relationship with another good friend of mine, Missy.  I was so very angry and devastated when it happened, I cried for weeks.  It's been over 2 years since it happened, and I've gone through an array of thoughts and feelings about it.  But the bottom line is that she is a sad, sick girl and I don't think she can help the things she does.  I know that forgiveness is more about ourselves than the other person, and I'm halfway there to forgiving her. But this situation with this particular person has branched out and affected other relationships in my life and it just pisses me off and makes my stomach hurt when I think about it.  Which can't be good for me, right?  And certainly isn't hurting her.  *sigh*  I guess it just goes to show that we truly are our own worst enemies!  For me, it's extremely difficult to understand how someone can purposely behave in a way that is going to hurt someone they love.  In this case, fool me once shame on you - fool me twice, shame on me.  There will never be a 3rd time.  The most I can hope for is to be able to hear her name or think of her without feeling like I want to cry or throw up.  Some day, I'll get there.  For ME.  Why should I have to put myself through that terrible feeling, when I am not the one who did anything wrong?  I can remember this time when I told her how I felt, she told me that Taylor Swift's song "Mean Girl" was written about me.  LOL   The funniest thing is that it bothered me at the time - I remember thinking "mean girl?  ME?"  I am just about the furthest thing from a mean girl that you could possibly meet.  I am, however, human.  And I have learned a lot over the years, I am no longer a naive 22-year-old, but a seasoned middle-aged (gasp! Did I just say that???) woman... I've been through a lot, and I don't put up with any shit anymore.  So I guess maybe some of the things I told her could be interpreted as "mean" in her eyes, but really they were just truths.  And if the truth hurts, perhaps it's time to change it.
So anyway, I had a situation arise with one of my very best life-long guy friends recently and that's what got me thinking about this whole thing.  With him, it's different - he did not purposely hurt me, and I think we will be able to work it out.  But it made me think even more about the friends I've lost over the years and why... and I realized that I can think about most of them with a smile when I remember the good times we shared, even if our paths went separate ways eventually.  That's a good thing, and I hope to feel that way about Angela and Missy some day.  Because they both meant a lot to me at one time in my life.

I only write for myself - I know I don't have a big audience here and probably only my buddy Alison will see this.  LOL  If you've made it this far, thank you for caring about what I write.  It helps me to get it out, it's therapeutic.  I will continue to work on being the best, most loving and positive person I can be. Peace.

Friday, June 14, 2013

My Nana

First of all, I cannot believe I didn't finish the last 2 days of the Blog Every Day in May challenge.  I tried really hard, because I don't like to commit to things I can't finish - but being away for over a week really through off my mojo!  Oh well - I'm pretty sure no one besides me noticed, but we're always our own worst critic, aren't we?

Anyway, this morning I woke up feeling sorry for myself.  Weepy, for no real reason.  Just felt like crying and being miserable - which is totally not like me.  I made my coffee and went to sit on the deck, started watching the hummingbirds flitting around their feeder, dipping their beaks in and flying away.  All of a sudden, one of them came right over to me and hovered in front of me for a good few seconds - it gave me goosebumps and then it zipped away.  It was weird, but in a nice way. LOL   A short time later, I was at my computer and looked down and noticed the date.  June 14.  Two years to the day that my nana died.  I just knew it was her, and I could hear her in my head saying "Quit your crying, dear, life is too short to waste on petty bullshit."  And that's exactly how she would have said it, too.  LOL

My nana was a tough cookie - she was not the warm and fuzzy grammy who baked you cookies and all that stuff.  She had 10 kids, and the youngest is only a few years older than me - so she had small children in the home when she started having grandchildren.  Nevertheless, she was my nana and I adored her.  We had Christmas Eve at her house every year when I was a child, and those are some of my best and most cherished childhood memories.

My nana was never sick, so when she was hospitalized in the Summer of 2011, I never thought she'd be gone within a month.  My mom told my sister and I that we didn't have to visit her (it was about an hour away), but my sister and I both felt like we did have to.  So we did - and I will forever be thankful that we listened to our instincts.  A few of my aunts were there that day, and my sister and I were each standing on one side of nana's hospital bed.  She looked pretty good, and we were joking and laughing.  She mentioned that she'd love for us to come spend a night with her, and I thought she meant in the hospital - when she realized that's what I thought, she said "oh God, dear, you can't stay here!  I meant when I get home!  With that loud laugh of yours, they'd kick us out of here in 5 minutes."  hee hee  It was just so... nana.  Michelle and I laughed all the way home and we still giggle every time we talk about it.  We swore we would make every effort to go spend a night with her when she got out of the hospital and was better, but she died just a few days later.  Shocked us all.  But man, what a wonderful last memory to have, huh?

Thanks for visiting me, nana, and giving me a kick in the pants in the nicest way - in your way.  LOL  I love you and miss you so much.  Peace.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Day 29: Five songs or pieces of music that speak to you or bring back memories.

Day 29: Five songs or pieces of music that speak to you or bring back memories. Use Grooveshark or YouTube to include them in the post.

This song reminds me of my own childhood, my parents took us to a Charlie Daniels concert at Indian Ranch (Massachusetts) when we were kids, and I learned every word to this song.  When my own kids were little, they loved listening to this song too and Cass learned to sing it by heart on her little karaoke machine when she was about 4.  Memories....

The Devil Went Down to Georgia - The Charlie Daniels Band
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This next song brings me back to Burncoat Pizza, when I was maybe 13-16 years old, hanging out at the pizza place with my friends and listening to the old juke boxes on the tables... I always tell her, but this song always makes me think of one of my very oldest friends (oldest as in a long time! hee hee), Tracy.  :)
 Juke Box Hero - Foreigner

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  This song reminds me of my early 20's - when I met my husband and was hanging out with him and all his friends... we listened to this a lot and it's just a soothing, beautiful song:

The Southern Cross - Crosby, Stills, and Nash

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 These last two songs make me cry every time I hear them, but I would never stop listening to them.  They remind me of two people I love, people who were taken from us much too soon.  They are the reason I hate cancer so very much.  This first song is for my Mel:

 
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And this last song is for my Meg:

If I Die Young - The Band Perry

The sharp knife of a short life... *sigh*
Peace.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Day 27: A Letter to your Readers

Day 27: A letter to your readers.

Dear readers,

This morning, I was unsure of what to write as a letter to you all.  Then I was doing some blog work and went to the page that lists all of my blogs.  I noticed under this one was a little notice that said I had 12 comments to approve.  Holy cow - I had no idea!  I had thought this blog was set up with the same information and settings as my other blogs, but apparently it was not - so I was not being notified by e-mail of comments to approve!  It made me day to read the sweet things you all said - hell, it made my day to realize someone had read what I wrote!  :)  I hope you all continue to visit my blogs and I hope to make you smile when you do.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart for always supporting me in whatever I do - I love you guys.  Peace.