Finding the me in the lonely..Β 

I have been feeling lonely lately. I don’t know if it’s because the days are shorter (not actually, as they’re still 24 hours, but just so damned much darkness), or if it’s because of the time of year and thinking of people I’ve lost over the years, if it’s some bizarre festive depression-like shit, or if I’m just sad. Who fucking knows – it could be hormonal (thanks, thyroid) 

But what I do know is, I have to find me in the lonely. I know I’m in there somewhere, I just have to keep digging. 

I’ve lost some people over the years, and it continues to sting. Some of the people I’ve lost, I’ve all but forgotten about. But some will never fade into the background. And Christmas is always harder on you when you miss someone. 

But why do I feel lonely? I’m not sure. Maybe it’s not lonely; perhaps its that I am listless. I have lots of lists (thanks, type a) but I feel like I should be going somewhere, doing something, and I’m not. But what? Where? 

I have some plans for 2017 and I’m hoping it will help shed some light on my darkness. What I do know for sure is, more people will be fading into the background, and I’m okay with that. One thing I have no doubt about – some people need to go away. Some people are toxic and I need not have that sludge any longer. I don’t know why I held on for so long. Perhaps because it’s what society has said is right. 

Well fuck society. 

I will finish off this year as best as I can and will as much strength as I can garner. And then maybe, just maybe, I will be able to find the me in the lonely, and she can, once again, be set free. 

I’ve lost myself over the years. Smiling at people who don’t deserve smiles. Letting things go that deserved a fight. Allowing poor treatment when a punch was more deserving. I need to find me. And I think that will abolish the lonely. 

Maybe I’m not lonely. I think, maybe, the more likely story is, I’m lost. 

The lasts of the firsts..

Tonight is just the same as any other night. It is Sunday in November. But while today is just like any other day, it is completely different – we are about to experience yet another last of the firsts.

My youngest turns 5 tomorrow. Five. I can barely wrap my head around this. And while he has already started school (another last of the firsts, as it was the last time we had a first day of school) this birthday is hitting me harder than most have in the past. Five feels big. It feels like he is no longer my baby, but this little tiny human who has this whole life that I am no longer a part of.

He is my last baby. I am not having any more. He completed our family. He was the last time I would be on the maternity floor at a hospital. He was the last bottle made for a 2am feeding. He was the last first time rolling over. He was the last time learning to crawl. He was the last first steps. He was the last first tooth. He was the last first giggle. He was the last first night in a big bed. He was the last first time riding a bike. He was the last first lost tooth. He was the last first day of school.

He is the last of the firsts.

And I know we have a lot of firsts to go through; not only with him, but with our other 2 boys (and there are firsts coming with them, as they are 11 and 13!! those are new firsts that I am not quite prepared for!!!) it is really sad to be closing the chapter on the first firsts. The baby firsts. The tiny heads and sweet noises, and the immense pride that you can only feel when you watch your tiny human do something for the first time; something you take for granted, like smiling, laughing, talking, walking, not shitting your pants…

He is turning 5. I remember where I was at this time 5 years ago. I had just dropped my older two off for the week, as I knew I was having a C-section on Tuesday morning. My husband (then boyfriend, because we like to do things out of order, and don’t conform to what society says is right and proper, and also because I swore I would never get married again..) and I had our entire day planned, for our last day without our baby. He came home from work, we watched SportsCenter (as we always did in the mornings), I went downstairs to get some cereal and wanted sugar, but the only sugar we had was that stupid paper bag of Rogers sugar, and it was on the top shelf of the pantry. I grabbed it and it fell on me, and exploded all over the kitchen. I remember laughing hysterically as I called Trevor to come rescue me from my current sticky predicament. We laughed, I ate, and then showered. And while he was getting out of the shower, he smashed his baby toe on the edge of the tub, and busted it wide open. This maybe isn’t something normal to remember, but it comes out again in the story. Then his mother showed up, as she was planning on coming to the hospital the next day, as she had never been in the room for a grandchild being born (she wouldn’t again, as I was being cut open in surgery, but she would see him when he was only hours old, which was a first for her) and I had a sip of hot chocolate, but it didn’t taste right, so I dumped the rest out. We then piled into her car to go do my pre-reg at the hospital, as I would be there too early the next day to register. They hooked me up to the little baby heartrate ticker thing (three kids, no idea what it is actually called) and the nurse looked at me and  said “wow. you’re having quite a few contractions!” and I just laughed and told her they had been happening all weekend, but I had been getting them since August. She then told me that she wanted to do an internal to see if I was actually in labor. Trevor and his mom stepped out, only to be called back in by my shouting “as if!” as the nurse told me I was more than 4cm dilated, and would be having my son that day. This came as a shock to us all, as we didn’t have a bag packed, didn’t have anything ready, didn’t even have our truck!! We had planned on going to see Harold and Kumar, and for dinner, then planned on packing our bag that night. Beauty of having a planned C-section; there really is very little guess work. Or so we thought.

Trevor left in a mad rush, as I was taken upstairs and prepped for surgery. I stood in the hallway, pacing while waiting for my nurse, and made a bunch of phonecalls to tell my family and closest friends that our son was coming a day early. It ended up being kind of awesome, though, as my older 2 were both born on the 7th, and now, so would my third. We lived 20 minutes away from the hospital, and he had to pack all of our stuff, and rush back. He got there just as I was being wheeled out of the room ( he would have been there sooner, to you know, support and calm me down, but he stopped for pepsi… ahem) and within a half an hour, our baby was there, in our arms, and smack dab in the middle of our hearts. The 3 days we spent in the hospital was filled with its own drama and bs, none of which needs to be recalled or revisited.. except Trevor’s aforementioned toe, which reaked havoc the whole time we were there, as the nurses weren’t able to give him a bandaid, because HE wasn’t a patient. His toe bled for the whole week. Note to self: beware toe damage – that shit bleeds forever!

And now, here I sit, remembering his tiny perfect head, his beautiful little baby lips, his tiny little noises, and how much my heart exploded when I got to hold him the first time.

The last time I held my baby for the first time. The last time I brought a new baby home from the hospital. The last time I spent hours trying to figure out how to make his formula, work the bottle warmer and the bottle sterilizer (so much was supposed to be done that last night! haha) The last time we would have a brand new baby at home for the first time. The last time we got to show off our new baby.

The last of the firsts. I know there are lots of other firsts, but this chapter is officially closed. He is going to be 5. To some, that may not seem like a big deal, but to me, it is.

My last baby.

 

I am back, bitches!

I have taken some time to chill, organize my life, and see how things feel. And what I can say right now is… things feel great! We are happy in our new house – it fits us very well and everyone is loving our new space.

Don’t get me wrong, the move itself was a slice of flaming hell. We had help. We arranged ahead of time for people to come help with the heavy cumbersome shit. I pack the house and clean after it is emptied, so the husband moves the shit. Seems fair. Except this time, help didn’t come. Bunch of hosers just didn’t show up. So who did the brunt of the heavy lifting? That would be us. At one point, my head was pinned between the wall and the couch, and I was not pleased. I know there are other people we could have called, but I have a very good reason for not doing so, which is why I am not bitching too heavily about moving our shit ourselves. Am I selfless? Did I want to give people their time with their families? Did I want to avoid being an inconvenience? NO! I don’t want those people calling us to move their shit. HAHA! Totally selfish, hence only being slightly annoyed.

Moving on…. We are settled and everyone is enjoying their respective spots in school.

Biggest little is thriving in grade 8 and just starting another year of volleyball. He is so good at that game, it is crazy. And it doesn’t hurt that he is very close to being 6 feet tall. Loser. I make him sit down when I give him shit, now. Nobody will take a 5’3″ person seriously when they hover 5-6 inches above them. He is a giant. He has a big heart. But at times I still question every choice I have ever made with him, due to the moron-adolescent big-ass attitude. Just have to remember it happens to the best of us and hope tomorrow is better. But as I remind myself all the time – it could be worse! He truly is a great kid and watching him become this beanpole with a vision for his life is kind of flooring me!

Middle-little (also known as the diabetic) is kicking ass this year. November 9th will be his 1 year diaversary, and he has got such a good grasp of it, our last appointment was mostly just sitting around and bullshitting with his nurses.. they didn’t even want to see his food log. He has grown (physically and emotionally) with this disease and we are blown away every day with how well he has adapted. He is in grade 6 and doing amazeballs with school and with his stupid busted ass pancreas. But he is so much more than just a diabetic kid. He is so funny and silly, and is going to earn a living with his amazing drawing and attention to detail. Just you wait and see….

Little-little!! Aww, here is where the changes are undeniable. My baby started kindergarten this year. Not only is it weird that he isn’t home two days a week, but he comes home and talks about this life that we aren’t a part of, and that has never happened before. It is tearing my heart apart a bit, but he is doing really well, so that helps. He attended his first bday party without us today, which is another change. Sigh… My baby. Seriously freaked out by this new development!

My husband!! Seriously… gush gush gush. I love the ever loving shit out of that man! Him appearing in my life was random, and a total miracle. My heart was obliterated before him, and now it is put back together in the most perfect way. He did a course at work this week, and walked away with a 98% which is amazing for someone who despises school, tests, speaking in front of people, has adhd, etc. And now this man, this amazing human that I get to share my life with, is a certified heavy equipment operator, and is certified to train people to not only run the equipment, but to also train other people to train people. In summation, he is a heavy equipment badass, and I am stupid proud of him! Plus, he is total sex on a stick, so there’s that, too.

Me…. I don’t really have a lot to report (at the moment) but shit is changing. My horizon is beginning to look a lot more pink, and the dark clouds are way behind me now. I have a few tricks up my sleeve… lets just say, what is coming next will be revolutionary in my life.

Like I said…. I’m back, bitches. But the me that is back isn’t the me you knew from before… I put myself back together differently this time.

*mic drop*

Diabetes life – More than needles and blood


Let me preface this with: my son has diabetes. It is new to us, but I am already very well versed in it, and don’t take lightly to BS being said about it. 

Now… 

When my son was diagnosed, other than losing my grandmother, it was the worst day of my life. My little boy, who was so funny and outgoing, and so full of life, would be thrown onto a new path and forced into a life he didn’t want. Heart. Shattered. 

But not only was he thrust into this life, we all were. His parents. His siblings. His friends (and their parents). His grandparents. His aunts and uncles. His teachers. His future girlfriends/wife. His future classmates. His future employers. People he has never met before are already impacted by this. 

Would we change our path if we could? No question about it!! But alas, his pancreas is gonna be a useless piece of shit forever now, so this is where we live. And this is where we deal. 

I keep saying “we”, as this is one hell of a team effort. My husband and I do the brunt of the work, but no one – NO ONE – does as much as our son! I’ll touch on that more in a bit. 

My husband and I are the ones who plan all of his meals, his snacks, his injection points; determine his carb to insulin ratios, how much long-lasting insulin to give; who hound him to drink lots of water; who make sure he gets lots of sleep and exercise; who deal with the random highs and sporadic lows. We are his first line of defense. 

Our other two boys help a lot. They help to put his lunches together, help to organize our pantry (which is a finely tuned machine on its own, with all of the food in it stacked in clear order, with the carb count written on top in sharpie) Our 4 year old hugs our DiaBadAss every time he has needles. And we play a game at mealtimes to see who can guess the closest to his blood sugar. It helps us all learn how he acts at different levels, and it helps him to learn how he feels at different levels. Plus, making it like a game takes some of the blah out of it. 

Here’s a “day in the life of” to show that we may make it look easy, but that is only because I am borderline OCD and am slightly Type A, and we work well together as a team. It doesn’t look easy because it is easy! Do not ever for a second think this is easy. We just deal a lot better than most:

On a regular (school) day, my son wakes up around 7:10, does the normal morning stuff and comes for breakfast. There, instead of sitting down and eating like most people are accustomed, he washes his hands, gets his kits and sits at the table. He then takes a strip out and gets his meter ready. Then he takes his lancing device, and patiently blows a small hole into his sensitive finger tip. He gently squeezes, wipes that drop off, and squeezes out a fresh drop, which he then gently places onto his ready test strip. While waiting for that number to appear, which will dictate the dose of fast-acting insulin he will have at that meal, he wipes his finger clean and gets his insulin pens out. Once the number comes up, we then begin determining the carb count for his breakfast, and using the blood sugar we just learned, and using his carb to insulin ratio for breakfast (and it’s different for all 3 meals in the day – something we had to painstakingly determine through trial and error) we figure out how much NovoRapid he will be taking. He then dials 2 units, shoots it into the lid, then dials in how many units he needs for breakfast (usually 4 units). Then he sticks that tiny needle into his tiny belly, and counts to 10, while the life-preserving smelly as hell insulin shoots into his non-existent fat (he has to pinch skin to create “fat” to inject into). Then once that needle is done, he gets his long-acting insulin ready to go. This one isn’t based on carbs, it’s an insulin he only takes once a day, and it lasts 24 hours (so they say). He primes this the same way, but through trial and error and what seems like a constant change in need, he takes the dose that we have determined is his “basal” need for the day. (It started out as 7 when he was first diagnosed, but over the course of 9 months, it’s increased to 14. That’s not to say it won’t decrease once school starts again, as being at school, he’s more active, but for now, it’s 14). He picks another spot on his poor needle torn belly, and sticks yet another needle into his pinched flesh. And only then, can he begin to eat his breakfast. Then we pack his lunch and snacks for the day, all the while counting his carbs, and writing everything down in his food log (including blood sugar tests and how much of each insulin he takes). Snack time rolls around at school, and he tests, texts me his number, and we determine if he can eat the snack was packed, or needs to replace it with a “free snack”(which we also pack, just in case), which is what he has when he is “out of range”. Lunchtime, and he pulls out everything we have marked as “lunch” in his lunchbox (so he knows what is snack and lunch, as it is exactly calculated), tests his blood get again, texts us the number, and we, recalling the carbs we packed for him and what his ratio is, tell him how many of his NovoRapid to take. Then he goes through the whole ordeal with priming and ramming himself with a needle, this time in the presence of his classmates and friends. The same is repeated for his afternoon snack, as well as his test when he gets home from school. Once dinner comes, we have already calculated his dinner carbs (after usually taking the packaging out of the garbage over and over, because we have forgotten the carbs, because that’s just what diabetes parents do!) and he goes through the whole situation again. 2-3 hours after dinner, he tests again, and if he is out of range/high, he takes correction insulin and grabs a bedtime snack (generally something free – he likes Whisps and cucumbers) and goes to bed.. And that’s when I take over. I test him around 10:30-11:00, and if he has correction insulin, again at 12:00. And every night, I wake up at 3:00 in the morning and check him. So on a typical night, I check him twice when he is sleeping. The nights he has insulin, I check 3-4 times. And the nights he is low and needs juice (which he drinks in his sleep)? I check him 5 times. With lows while sleeping, diabetics run the risk of slipping into a coma, and never waking up. While there is air in my lungs, that will not happen to my son. His life means more to me than 15 minutes of sleep. Then we wake up the next day, and round and round we go again. 

His doctors appointments are in a city 4 hours away. And we go every 3-6 months. (Every 3 right now). We are at the drugstore getting supplies every week and a half (his supplies take up over half of my previous liquor cabinet – how I drink less now, I’ll never know!) The pharmacists know us. The diabetic team know us by our first names (including our non-D kids). We do training with teachers at school, and several of them have our cell phone numbers saved in their phones. Our family and friends have been given crash courses on testing, needles, carb counting, radios, how to inject his glucagon for the emergencies in which he goes into a coma and can not eat his fast acting sugar. 

We have done more math in the last 9 months than I have in years. And you know what? He’s worth every tear, effort, sleepless night and frustration. 

There are a lot of misconceptions about diabetes, and I’ll touch on that another time… But what you need to take from this is: it’s hard. Every damned day is hard. It’s hard for us, but it’s the hardest for our son. Regardless of what we do or how much we put into this, it is only happening to our son. This is his life, we are just helping him learn how to make it be best possible. And I will continue to do so as long as he wants and needs me to. 

Period. 

Mom rant…

Excuse me for a second while I pull my soapbox up, dust it off, and climb on this bad boy….Β  I can’t scroll through IG or FB or any of these obnoxious social media sites that are now a part of our daily lives, without seeing this one meme that makes me want to punch myself in the ovaries and scream like a velociraptor.

Feast your eyes on this load of steaming you-know-what….

excuse-the-mess-kids-making-memories

 

WELL! I guess someone needs to break the bad news to my kids that they are going to be growing up sans memories! What a shitty way for my kids to have to live – with a clean house!! How dare I!?

Seriously, though. I feel like this is just a bullshit saying that people can spout off to keep themselves from feeling guilty that their home looks like an episode of Hoarders. “Oh it’s okay that I have rodents feasting on the remnants of last weeks dinner – look how happy my kids are!” Whatever helps you sleep at night, sweetheart.Oh and ps. GROSS.

Or there is this one….. which just basically sends a shot of pure rage down my spine and causes even more dinosaur-esque howls.

 

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Let me see if I can put this in the most delicate term I can muster, given how irritating I find this abhorrent saying…. *clears throat*

FUCK-ETH OFF-ETH! There… I added an “eth” to make it sound Shakespearean, cuz I’m classy like that.

So you are telling me that because people don’t stick to my floor, my kitchen is not covered in piles of dirty dishes and papers, and my laundry is all caught up, that somehow makes me a crap mother!? Go find a donut, and make love to the hole in the center… (again, trying to be classy.. if that doesn’t do it for you, try this… go fuck a donut!)

I have been in every situation that a mother can find themselves in. I have been a stay-at-home mom, I have been a working mom, I have been a single mom, I have been a single mom with two jobs, I have had 1 kid, 2 kids, and now 3 kids. ALL BOYS! And you know what? There has never been a situation in my life where anyone would feel compelled to call an exterminator due to my housekeeping inadequacies. I have been so busy that I didn’t get to bed at night until it was almost time to get up again. And you know what? My kitchen stayed clean, my boys stayed clean, my laundry was always done and nobody stuck to my floor!

And in spite of all of this, I am still a good mom. My kids are happy and healthy and we are all doing very well! I am just not a lazy shit. When something needs to be done, I do it. I don’t wait until it is in such disarray that it would be simpler to set it ablaze and start over.

But do you know what else I have done that helps greatly with the cleanliness of my home? I MAKE MY KIDS CLEAN UP THEIR MESSES!! Is that not the most insanely genius thing you have ever heard? Teaching your kids to be something other than a slob? What madness!! I know, this may sound like some weird form of sorcery, but it’s true. My kids, whom I may have mentioned before are all males, clean up their own mess. Their rooms get cleaned every night. The basement/xbox area is cleaned every night before bed. Their laundry is done once a week (by them, including folding and putting away). They help load and unload the dishwasher. It is quite simple – teach them to be respectful and tidy, and your house won’t look like a bomb filled with clothes, toys and shit has gone off every single day.

Messes do not equate to happy kids. Sticky shit on your floor does not make you a good mom. Happy kids are happy kids, regardless of how clean or messy their environment looks like. Good moms are the ones who love and cherish their kids, do right by them, teach them right from wrong, and make sure they have the very best chance in life to become the very best version of themselves. Being a revolting pig or having 20 loads of laundry laying around does not make you a good parent. Being a good parent makes you a good parent. Sorry, but it’s time that someone had to blow this shit wide open.

You want to have happy kids and be a good mom? Go do it! And stop spreading the lies and bullshit around, and stop pretending that the giant mess and sticky shit in your kitchen is a good thing. It’s not. Hoarders. They have a show for a reason.. and it is not for inspirational purposes.

 

You and I..

I am currently sitting on my couch, screwing around on Apple Music, listening to all sorts of music I maybe wouldn’t have had I had to actually pay for it. Chances are good that if I had to pay $1.29 for it, it never would have made it onto my phone. But considering I am sitting in the first month of my 3 month free trial, I figured why not! Let my freak-music flag fly! So here we are, deafening bass and treble flowing through my blue beats, and cramming itself straight into my brain. Then it hits me – literally and figuratively. “I got all I need when I got you and I, cuz I look around me and see a sweet life.. stuck in the dark but you’re my flashlight, you’re getting me through the night” and shivers ran up and down my spine, and my husband flashed into my head. A breath caught in my throat and I had to blink back tears. Sure, it may be a cheeseball song from a cheeseball movie, but that line struck a chord with me (pardon the pun.. haha)

For anyone who doesn’t know me or my husbands story, let me just say, it has been a sorted one. It was love at first sight, but also nothing near love at first sight. After a miserable month of school in this catholic high school in grade 10, my mom transferred me to the high school I should have been at all along. A month and a half into the school year, I was, once again, considered the “new girl”. But all of my friends from junior high were there, so I wasn’t all alone. I did a few days in this school, and felt okay. Then one day, rain. My gym class ends up in the drama room, in the dark, siting on the floor, watching a mind-numbingly boring video about tennis. And all of a sudden, there was a head in my lap and a hand holding mine under my knee. I looked at the boy beside me and whispered “who is this?!” and he snickered and said “oh, that’s just Trevor”. And that, people, is how I met my husband. We sat through that entire video, and I can’t tell you a single thing that happened on it, but I can tell you that my heart was racing! I was only a few days at this new school, and I didn’t really know anyone in my gym class. When the video ended, he looked up at me with those gorgeous brown eyes that I now get to gaze into every single day, and he smiled and said “me and Jennie’s like peas and carrots” and then stood up, grabbed my hand, walked me to my locker, kissed me on the cheek and walked away. Other than a few pleasantries for the next 3 years, that was the only real contact I had with Trevor in high school. How much easier life could have been if I had just kept him from walking away that day. We talk about it all the time. Our “what if” moment. We had another “what if” moment at our safe grad 3 years later.. but he was drunk (as all kids are at their safe grads, plus, he was 18, so it was totally legal) and he doesn’t remember telling me he liked me, calling me cutie, saying how sad he was that we weren’t closer, or hugging me like he never wanted to let me go. Funny to look back at moments in your life where everything could have shifted, just if only……

There was zero contact between us over the next 12 years. We became facebook friends in 2007, when facebook was taking the world by storm, but still no contact. Trevor and I lived very different lives, but at the same time, they were scary similar. It’s like life knew better, and just continued grooming us to end up together. I was with someone, and he was with someone. We both had 2 sons, and deep down inside, without showing anyone, we were both miserable, but always had smiles on our faces. We endured a lot, most of which doesn’t require any airing or attention. Lets just say, it was a very sad and empty decade of years.

Then, one night, after he endured the hardest year of his life, closely followed by me doing the same, us separated by 4 hours and what felt like a million years, I made a facebook post expressing how deeply I missed my grandma. And a couple hours later, at midnight, my phone buzzed on my nightstand. I remember my mouth hanging open, and saying out loud in my empty room “Trevor J… where the hell did you come from!?” Of course, I am saying this to myself, cuz I am crazy like that. So, I typed out that very sentence, and thanked him for the nice message. And just like that, a friendship was born. We chatted a few times, nothing too exciting. Talked about our kids, our losses, our lives, etc. I grew to look forward to our talks, because he made me feel like there was a rainbow just over the horizon for me, and that eventually all of my dark clouds would go away. I was, at that point, a year into my divorce and was more lonely than I ever really let on, but he somehow saw through it and made me feel like it was all going to be okay.

There is a lot of stuff that happened in those few months, most of which I do not feel like it needs to be aired, either. All I can say is, we were friends. He helped me through my divorce, helped me smile again, and when the time came for him needing someone to lean on, I helped him see that there was a light at the end of the tunnel. We were friends. Period. I was closed off, jaded, angry, hurt and broken, and he made me feel hope. Then, when some time had passed, we decided to give this love thing a shot. Let me tell you this, two broken people with that much baggage trying to make a long distance relationship work? That, right there, is a recipe for broken fucking hearts. And that is exactly what happened to us. Fizzle fizzle, crack, and we were done before we ever even got going. And it broke me even more. We had a couple of months where we held eachother together with hopes and tears, but it wasn’t enough. Sometimes, love just isn’t enough. I called him my bandaid, but it just proved that when bandaids are soaked enough, they just don’t stick. And our bandaid was drenched in buckets of tears. It just let go.

Months passed after the most devastating breakup either of us had ever endured, and we all but stopped talking. I couldn’t bear the pain, and he, too, just blocks out pain. So we went from being friends, to best friends, to in love, to nothing, in a mere few months time. It would sound like it was no big deal to most, but that was one of the worst pains I had ever felt. It felt like I was losing oxygen and could not breathe. And deep down inside, as much as I told myself I hated him, I still felt like we were supposed to be together. Who breaks up, tears running down their face, and says “I love you more than anything, and I WILL marry you one day”? I’ll tell you who, my husband. We both just knew we were too broken to be a part of anything at that point, so we broke it off, at 2am laying on my hotel room bed, heads on our tear soaked pilows, and fell asleep holding eachother. Almost 6 years later, and it still hurts my chest.

One day, during our “off” phase, I was at my weekend job, and this song came on the radio. I remember listening to a bit of the words, and falling to the floor in a puddle of tears. “I wish Trevor thought this way about me” I thought…then picked myself up, swore I would stop thinking about him right then and there, and carried on with my life. Fast forward a few months, and I went to Calgary to spend the weekend with my best friend. I finally felt free of the pain, and like I was going to be okay, after all. We had a great weekend, and I felt happy for the first time in months. After leaving her house, I texted Trevor and told him I would be swinging by to “get my shit from you, cuz there’s no need for you to have it anymore” So we planned for me to stop and grab my book, blackberry and PVR. I had several people texting and calling me while I was there, to check up on me, and make sure I didn’t get sucked back in.

I got out of my truck, felt really good about myself (helped that my thyroid meds kicked in while we were apart and I lost 35 pounds.. haha) and grabbed my stuff, threw it in the truck (making sure to flash my tiny ass at him) and said goodbye and started to leave. But he wanted to talk… 2 hours later, we were still standing in that parking lot, talking. And before I knew it, he grabbed me and kissed me. It was all over after that. I tried to keep him at bay, I tried to keep my heart locked up… but he is supposed to be in there… he was always meant to be in my heart. Always. He texted me at work later that week and said “look up the lyrics to this song. Every time I hear it, I think of you and miss you” What song do you think it was? Yeah, the exact same one I thought “I wish Trevor thought this way about me” a few months earlier. When people are meant to be together, it always finds a way.

It wasn’t easy. It still sometimes hurts. I still have moments when I let this all in and I cry. But it is part of our story, as sorted as it may be. Had all of that not happened, we wouldn’t be where we are right now. That’s not to say I don’t wish we could have ended up together without all of the hurt and pain. I am so insanely jealous of people who do it right on their first try. I will never know what that feels like. I have an ex. He has an ex. And no matter what we do or where we go, they will always be in the background. I have kids from a previous marriage. He has kids from a previous relationship. I have a failed marriage. He has a failed long term relationship. I have trust issues. He has trust issues. We still fight fights with our exes, with eachother. There is still baggage at every single turn. And I wish on a daily basis that we had a do-over. But that just isn’t real, nor is it ever possible. This is our life. This is what we have built. We have a beautiful son together. He is an amazing dad to my older two boys. We have a sturdy as hell marriage that isn’t going anywhere.

Trevor is my person. He is my oxygen. I have a lot of issues from my past, but instead of wishing them away, he holds my hand and helps me see in the darkness. I would give anything to go back to grade 10, and never let his hand go… but that’s not my life. Nor is it his. We have overcome some insane stuff in our relationship. We have stood together and let life try to knock us down. But with him by my side, I have no doubt in my mind that I am in the middle of my forever, and nothing is ever going to rip us apart. He still gives me butterflies and tingles, I still get giddy when I hear my phone tell me that he texted me, I still miss him every single time he goes to work, we still text eachother any time we are apart, I still get nervous when he kisses me, I still crave his hugs….

I know if we had been together sooner, it would have been amazing and magical and everything that dreams are made of… but it also may not have worked. Because at our core, we are the same people, but we have both changed a lot over the last 2 decades. And in some ways, I think that Trevor and I had to break before we got together, so that we could help each other put ourselves back together the way we were always meant to be.

Ten things not to say to a “boy mom”

I have all boys. It is a lot, some days. But I still love it. My boys are my world, and I wouldn’t trade them for anything. Do I sometimes wish I had a girl to do girly shit with? To take for pedicures and all of that? Sure. Sometimes. Then I think about the bras and clothes and periods and hair and boys and hormones and hormones and crying and tantrums and crying and nails and all of the stuff that comes with girls (just generalizing here, don’t jump up my ass for pigeon holing females.. speaking as a female, I can say this generalization is generally bang on)

BUT!!!! Boys are not easy. It’s not all hot wheels and skittles. To be honest, it is pretty close! But they come with their own list of challenges and issues, they are tiring and exhausting and confusing, just like every kid is. It has it’s moments of being insanely low maintenance, but, there are a few things about having all boys that drive me absolutely bat-shit crazy… I mean, after all, I am a mom, I have a crew off hooligans learning their way in the world, and that could drive anyone to the brink of insanity.

Frequently, in my daily swim in a sea of testosterone, I am repeatedly asked the same questions over and over, and the same remarks are made in regards to the sex of my offspring.

Here are a list of my top 10, but trust me, there are many many more.

#10. All boys?Β why yes! you are quite astute.

#9. It must get loud! yes, as most children do at one time or another, it does get loud.

#8. Wow, there must be a lot of smells! well, considering my children bathe, and are not cavemen, it doesn’t smell any more than any other human being would. but thanks for the concern for our hygiene.

#7. Boys are so much easier than girls – lucky! really!? is that so? thanks for letting me know.

#6. I am so glad I don’t have boys please come and say this to me when your girls are in their teens and you’re up-stream in estrogen river, and I am happily swimming in my sea of testosterone.

#5. Your grocery bill must be insane! yes, it is quite absurd, as most people’s are these days, but at least I will never have the enormous beauty costs that moms of girls will have.

#4. Boys aren’t as affectionate as girls, my girls always snuggle and want to cuddle well, that is interesting to learn. I will be sure to contemplate this remark the next time I have all three of my boys sitting on or beside me, giving me a hundred hugs and kisses every night, and telling me they love me more times a day than I can count.

#3. Bet you wish you had a girl – all that pink and pretty stuff is fun! nope.

#2. Gonna try for a girl? FUCK NO. I am fixed. My husband is fixed. We are done done done.

#1. Guess you will just have to keep trying for a girl! listen to me very carefully, I have 3 boys. I adore my boys. My life is complete. I do not feel like I am missing anything. I do not feel like I was shorted in life. I do not feel like I am less whole without someone with pigtails and attitude sauntering through my house. I am sure people adore their girls. But you know what? I adore my boys. PERIOD.

 

Maybe people should just stick to their own business and stop trying to tell me what sex of human to have in my house. I am a single female in a house of males, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

“baby” always applies…

I read this article the other night, and before I knew it, tears were involuntarily pouring and running down my cheeks. This lady was talking about her boys, and how they are no longer chubby cheeked toddlers, but these little mini-men who were pulling away into lives of their own, and my heart shattered.

I have three boys, spanning in age from 13-4. There is a big gap in there because the youngest is a product of my second marriage, and what I fondly call my “second chance at a happy ending”. My husband swooped in and saved me from myself, showed me that love is real, how it feels, and how swollen a heart can get when it is literally overflowing with love. I have ALWAYS adored my boys; for the longest time, they were the only source of my heart swelling feelings. Then I had a third little boy and got remarried, and now my heart is so full, it feels like it couldn’t possibly fill any more. But then I think about everything these boys are going to do and become, and I’m reminded of just how much more love I am going to encounter in my life.

My oldest is about to turn 13. A teenager. Really? How did that happen? I realize time has passed, I’m not that daft. But it feels like just a few months ago I was bringing this tiny little thing with a white-blonde mohawk home from the hospital. My first kid, at the absurdly young age of just 22. And there we were, learning it all together. He was a lot of firsts for me, the biggest being the first time I felt true, deep and real love. Until I held him in my arms, I just had no idea how real love felt. 

Then came my second bouncing baby, a mere 2 years and 3 months later. This one was a bit more of a struggle to get into the world. He’s been a stubborn little shit from the get-go. But again, I held him in my arms, and my heart pounded in a different way than it had even earlier that day. Having kids changes you. You don’t make room in your heart for them, your heart grows to accommodate all of the new love for these tiny little pieces of you. 

It was many years before my uterus housed another rib-cage orangutan. My oldest was 8 and middle was 6 when the final addition to our family came into the world. After my first two boys, and my husband and love of my life, I didn’t think my heart could grow bigger or pound harder than they made it, but I was wrong. My littlest guy was the final piece of our puzzle, and my heart finally felt complete. 

These little humans, these little pieces of me, they will always be my baby’s. From the moment they were a thought, until this very second, I have been around for every single moment of their lives. I know their looks, their tones, their noises, their laughs, their snores, their souls.. They are the best pieces of me and the biggest part of my heart.

Every time I refer to one of them as my “baby” I get a fresh serving of hell from certain people in my life. I’m not calling them a baby, nor am I being a clingy helicopter mom. But let’s face it, whether anyone approves or agrees, those three will always be my baby’s. When I look at them, I can still hear their baby noises in my head, remember my first scary moment with them, remember their first laughs, their favorite first foods, hear their tiny little cries, remember when they crawled, walked, ran, jumped, hurt themselves, said mommy.. Even typing it, my heart is pounding differently. 

People may get defensive and combative about mothers and their “special” bond with their children. That’s not to say that dads don’t feel things, too. But at the end of the day, my bond and attachment with my kids will always be a million times different than anyone else’s, because regardless of how much daddy’s love their baby’s, my kids heard my heart beat from the inside. Sure, they are half their fathers, but kids physically take, and keep, parts of their moms from when they were in the womb. I will always have a special attachment to my kids. And it will always be something that no one but me will understand or feel. 

Thinking about them growing up, not hugging me anymore, never being home, choosing their girlfriends over family time, going off to college, getting their own homes, having their own lives.. It makes me proud and excited, but it pulls at my heart – the heart that each of them helped build and expand – and it turns on my eyeball faucets. I’m so excited for their futures, because I know I’ve raised them to be the best versions of themselves.. But for now, for the time I have left, I’m going to kiss their foreheads while they sleep, rub their heads while they have breakfast in their pajamas, let them hug me a million times a day, smile when they call me mommy (mom is not far off), watch cartoons with them on Saturdays, laugh at their really silly jokes, listen to their stories, and look into their sweet innocent eyes – the same eyes I looked into when they were only minutes old. 

They’re my baby’s. They always will be. And even when they’re too old to call me mommy, that’s who I’m always going to be. 

To curse, or not to curse…

A few days ago, my friend tagged me in a post on facebook. The gist of the article was about parents swearing in front of their kids. I know a few people in my life who are very anti-swearing.  I, however, seem to come across as one of the parents who don’t watch what they say. How does that make me feel? I am not sure about that, but one thing I do know for sure, I don’t avoid certain words or phrases for fear that my kids will repeat them. (possibly because by now, they’ve repeated all of the bad ones, so why stop now?)

It started me thinking. Does this make me a bad mom? Should I be shielding my kids from the horrible words of the world? If I curse in front of my kids, does that set them up to be wretched little humans?

And you know what I deduced? F*CK NO! My kids are great and funny and smart little humanoids, and maybe even smarter than kids who’ve never heard “fuck” or “shit”, or ever heard their mother shout her famous coined-phrased “piss and shit-sticks” when she’s forgotten something important, or had their mother or father mumble “douchebag” to the rude-ass driver on the road.

Smarter how, you may ask? Well, I’ll tell you! Cuz my kids have heard all of these (and possibly worse, don’t judge me!) and they know that they’re not supposed to repeat it, and for the most part, they don’t! I think that jacks their intelligence points up a few notches, because they are a few steps ahead of kids who’ve never heard them and then begin to shout them from the rooftop at the first chance they get when they’re older.

I’ll admit – I came from a very strict and religious house (I recall getting my ass GROUNDED when I dared bring a NKOTB cassette into my house.. “hangin’ tough” was the one and only song I have ever heard, because I got busted while listening to my “secular” contraband in my room one day) So when I got old enough to be in a group of kids who used this vernacular as their regular speak, I got butterflies! A few things went through my head at my first experience with a non-religious-schoolyard encounter…

1- oh my goodness, naughty words!

2- holy shit, these kids are badasses!

3- holy shit, I just said “holy shit!” I am such a badass!

It was my first week of grade 7 (my first year of junior high) and I was blown away! We were all standing in a group by the fence (like true bad-asses) and I heard some of my new-found friends using naughty words, and my religious upbringing recoiled, and then (what I believe to be) my true identity came surging forth, and my first (of many) curse words left my tongue with ferocity and force, and I felt a surge of empowerment and sophistication (shut up, I was a stupid kid) and I have been a profanity volcano ever since.

Well, that is not entirely true, I suppose. For the looongest time, I kept up the charade of being good little church girl, for the most part, while in the presence of my family. But you can only keep your true self bottled up for so long, until the carbonation build-up gets too strong and the “real” you comes bubbling forth. Well, I think my “true self” came surging out with the purchase of my very first (and still favorite) Blink 182 cd. I remember playing it in my car and my sister calling me a heathen (she was a church girl for a lot longer than her heathen big sister) I can still see the look of shock and disgust on her face, and it still makes me giggle. She soon crossed over to the dark-side with me, though, using her first naughty word while singing along with Kid Rock in her car (she was beside herself with shock, disgust and amusement when the F word came unknowingly flying out of her mouth while singing along to her cars cd player) I laughed, and it remains one of my favorite memories to this day.

The churchy charade soon ended at home, and now I am not ashamed to say that our family gatherings bring forth some of the most filth-ridden and hysterical spewings of profanity. So, if you shy away from that sort of talk, stay away from this particular group of yahoos.

But back to my children. I have decided that swearing around my kids isn’t taboo. Swearing AT my children, abso-bloody-lutely.. Don’t be disrespectful to them; they are still people.

However:

1- I am the parent

2- I am grown up and know right from wrong.

3- We are not equals.

4- “Do as I say, not as I do” rules in this house. Not saying I am a bad example, but I had to learn the hard way, so they don’t have to.

5- They are my kids, and while I adore them, they still have a lot to learn.

6- You shouldn’t be on the same parallel as your kids. Same level of respect, yes. But at the end of the day, you will always be older than them, and THEIR PARENT!

7- We teach them not to slam their fingers in the car door, or to pick their noses in public, so, teaching them not to repeat the shit I say should be a piece of cake, and perfectly acceptable.

8- If you don’t agree with this, don’t swear in front of my kids, and politely ask me to watch my mouth in front of yours. Respect. Goes both ways, I am not an asshole.

9- Hearing my son honk the little horn in the car-cart at Safeway and mumble “douchebag” is a memory I will always laugh about, and wouldn’t have if he hadn’t heard me and my husband doing the same thing. He was told to not say that anymore (and he hasn’t) but it was still amusing.

So all in all, I don’t believe that swearing makes people “bad”. I don’t believe that kids will grow up to be horrible people if they hear naughty words, nor do I believe it sets them up for a putrid existence. They are just words. Yes, their meaning may be a bit less scrupulous than some, but does that really breed a bunch of assholes? No. My kids still have manners and morals, they are still sweet and caring and thoughtful, they still have respect, they still know right from wrong, and they still have huge and beautiful hearts. But just to even shit out, I put them in Catholic school, so they can learn stuff that I might not necessarily be able to teach them.

But let’s be honest, most kids I know from Catholic or religious schools/backgrounds end up being the foul-mouthed naughty kids anyway (case and point, MOI!), so maybe I just gave my kids a headstart to understand the logistics of this foul-mouth society that they are about to enter.

Who f*cking knows.. All I know is, my kids are frequently getting Virtue Awards at school for being kind, considerate, thoughtful, patient and loving… So I must be doing something right. 
  
  

All that sparkles is gone…

We moved into our house on November 25th, and I decided to put up our tree and decorations right off the bat. It made more sense to me than unpacking the whole house, and then moving a ton of stuff to get the Christmas rubbish up. Yes, I am very wise! But save your applause til the end.

So, we have been in here for just over a month (and may I say how lovely it is to move in the winter! Everyone needs to try that just once in their lives.. you know what they say, misery loves company!) But anyway.. our house has been all shiny and silver and dripping sparkly shit since we moved in. While I admit that I love the lights, I despise the mess. I am not much of a light-turner-oner, so Christmas is wonderful, cuz all of the lights are on and I don’t need to use any lamps or the god awful ceiling lights. HOWEVER! When the garland explodes and little slivers of silver are attached to everything, I have minor panic attacks. And for a Type A, this is rather dangerous.

But I do it for my kids! They love it. Their eyes still fill with magic and wonder, and get all giddy when the tree is set up. I had my apprehensions about having it up with our little furball this year, but the little feline a-hole did surprisingly well for this being his first Christmas. My older two are pretty much out of the “santa” lie, but my 4 year old is still deep in it. So we all do our best to make it special and magical.. this will be our last little one, and once the jig is up, that will be it for us and the magic of Christmas.

Most years, by noon on December 26th my house is de-sparkly-shited and life is back to normal. However, due to divorce papers, my older two boys weren’t with us this year, so we had to postpone our big family shin-dig until January 1st. (sidenote: shin-dig? Why is this phrase related to things that should be enjoyable? One would think that digging your shin would be unpleasant.. but that’s just my opinion) So I had an extra week of the festive mess so that our family Christmas could be decorated accordingly. It was nice, it was busy, it was hot but it was fun.

Our family has grown exponentially over the last few years. For the longest time, it was just the parents and us 4 kids. Then I had a kid, then another, then the siblings started pairing off, then I had another kid, then in one year, 2 more kids were brought into the family, and then another last year. So now we are up to 2 parents, 4 kids with partners, and 6 grandchildren. It’s a lot of people! But, it is my people, so it is cool. I mean, it was stifling hot in here, but it was still cool.

But we did it, it was a few hours of insanity, and once everyone was back to their cozy abodes, we put our kids to bed, cleaned up the kitchen, got into our comfy pants and I told my husband I wanted to take down the Christmas crap. He snorted, threw himself on the couch and turned on the hockey game. Fine. I plopped myself down on the couch and apparently succumbed to how exhausted I must have been, because I woke up later to my husband talking about Lethal Weapon 4. Nothing says the end of Christmas much better than Riggs and Murtaugh blathering on about being “too old for this shit”.

But for now, my house is back to being just a normal amount of mess. Maybe I should look at this differently and appreciate the sparkly shit – I suppose it is just a really pretty mess.
  

Before… 

  
After…. *sigh of relief*