With everything they have..

I think we can all agree, people are different. And I don’t necessarily mean in a “wow, she has multiple screws loose” kind of different, but different in the fact that we are all fucked in our own special way.

Yes. Fucked. I said it. You know why? Because normal is just an enigma, and it is one that far too many strive for, when they/we should just accept our screwballiness and totally rage in the face of insanity.

Moving on..

When people find other people who fit into their particular funny shaped opening (don’t be a pervert) it is a special moment. And it is one that you should revel in. Make shirts. Throw a party. Crack those obnoxiously messy new years thingys. Do it. You know you want to.

Whether it comes in the form or a friend, or someone who is more than a friend, hold on tight. There is so much ugly in the world, it is amazing to find something that brightens and improves your life.

Friends are so great – they are the family you got to choose. I have some people who I’ve added to my family, and I feel so lucky to have them in my life. And some great family. And then there’s my husband. Damnit, he is my person. My everything. My forever.

(yes this is all leading somewhere)

This is why I get so SHOCKED that people just chuck other people away because they don’t feel like they love them enough. WHAT?!

I’ve heard of the most absurd breakups. One time, I heard a story from my friend, about some girl she knew who broke up her very long term relationship because her live-in boyfriend didn’t fluff the throw cushions properly, or put the cap back on the toothpaste efficiently. Holy shit. Remember when I said people were fucked? Yep. Case and point!

People, just because someone doesn’t love you in the way you feel you should be, doesn’t mean they aren’t loving you in the only way they know, or with everything that they’ve got.

My friends are busy and have their own lives. Do I fault them for not replying to texts in a timely fashion, of which I deem acceptable? No. They are great and amazing people, and they will get back to me when they can. I never expected to be a higher priority than their job, or spouse, or kids!

My husband doesn’t clean the way I do, or obsess over absurd shit like I do. Do I fault him for not being the same Type A lunatic that I am, or doing things the way I do, or expect him to? Fuck no! He is who he is, and he is who I fell in love with. I didn’t fall in love with him because he could fluff a mean pillow, or he perfectly organized the pantry.. I already did that shit, so I feel like if we both did, there would be a power struggle. So this works.

They love me. They love me in the way that they can, in the capacity that they can, in their own special and fucked up way.

Just because someone doesn’t love you the way you think they should, doesn’t make it wrong. We are all fucked, just try and find the people who are the same level of fuckiness as you, and hold on with both hands.

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.

“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. 

That thing, relationships and my side of the bed…

There was a time in my life where I believed that I would never feel “that thing”… You know, the butterflies and giddiness, the forever-love warm and fuzzies, the our-future-is-so-bright-we-have-to-wear-shades, the I-can’t-imagine-my-life-without-you love.. you know.. fairytale crap. And you know what? I was perfectly happy with that. I had made myself a little bubble and was “happily” living my life in my ignorant complacency. Then this boy came into my life, and flipped it upside down, inside out, sideways, and pretty much every other imaginable direction. And now, I have “that thing” every single day, and I could not be happier..

Except….

So, when my husband, T, and I got together 5 years ago, he was very inquisitive – more so than I had really anticipated or ever experienced before. He wanted to know everything about me (as lame and boring as that sounds!) and I gladly forked over as much info as he was requesting. One time, he asked my what side of the bed I slept on, and without giving it much thought, I told him “the right” (right if you are laying in bed, and left if you are standing at the foot of the bed) and we carried on our merry way. It wasn’t until later that year when we moved in together, that I had to make my first concession in our relationship. See, what I didn’t know was that when he asked me about my side of the bed, he then began sleeping on that side of his bed “to be closer” to me. Sweet as hell? You bet. Did I bite me in the ass? FOR SURE! I had officially found the love of my life, and he klepto’d my side of the bed! Crap. Compromise… crap. We spent a few months arguing (in one of those annoyingly cute “we-just-moved-in-together-and-still-shit-skittles” kind of ways) and in the end, what ended up as the deciding factor was him saying “I need to be between you and the door, in case anyone breaks in” aww, cute, right? Pfft.. just ploy to steal my side.

But it’s okay.. he is wonderful. Do I miss my side of the bed? Sure. But the nights that he works, I take up the whole bed, out of principle. HAHA! But, he does the same thing when he sleeps without me. I guess we are just two peas in a pod – both who claim the right side is their side.

No relationship is perfect πŸ˜‰
  

“Love” is no longer a 4 letter word to me….

Yes, I realize it is still a word comprised of four letters, but I am talking about the other type of four letter words.

A few years ago, love was absolute rubbish to me. It meant nothing. I loved my family and children, but that is a different sort of love than you have for a significant other. And seeing those words typed before me is really sad. My kids were (and still are) the best thing I have ever done. I see so much of myself in them, and I work on a daily basis to make sure that only the good parts shine through. I tried, and still continue to, try and protect them from becoming as jaded and cynical as I was. Even through the worst part of my life, I still made sure to protect them from all of it, and made sure they never understood that I had given up on love, all together. (well, two of them, anyway… as the third is the product of what I am about to talk about)

All of this came flooding into my head last night, and I literally burst into tears in my kitchen. Alone. For really no other reason than I allowed myself to think about what I used to have and be. That is not only entirely heartbreaking, but also really sad!! But kind of good. I don’t know.. it is all just very confusing.

Yesterday was Valentines Day (in case you live under a rock and don’t have a calendar or a phone, or a connection to the outside world) and while my husband and I have a long-standing rule that we will not buy into that commercial hollabulloo, he still surprised me with two cards. One of them, our three year old picked out (and it is hilarious! A singing cupcake that screams “i love you” at the end of his song.. definitely a gem of a card) and my hubsy picked out the most perfectly worded and sweet card that completely summed us up right at this moment in time. It was a very nice gesture. And as a symbol of my gratitude, I bought him a marked down chocolate today while I was at the store. It was on sale and it says “love” in chocolate. I think it was a win-win πŸ˜‰

But last night, while he was on his break, and I had just put our three year old to bed (for the second time… little stinker) I threw a bag of popcorn in the microwave and glanced at my table.. I saw the card and read “a promise to my wife” scrolled across the front, and the tears just started rolling. No, I am not hormonal. No, the time of the month that I am in has no bearing on this. No, I am not insane. I was just touched by his sentiment, and immediately flooded with a surge of memories and old feelings.

Before my husband (and for a short time during the beginning stages of our relationship) I was absolutely miserable. I was jaded and cynical, flat-out unhappy, and just a shell of a human. I was wrecked, to put it in layman’s terms. Looking back, I can’t believe how unhappy and miserable I was for so long. But I always had a smile on my face, and to the outside world, I was fine. Maybe a bit sad, but nowhere near as bad as I actually felt inside. For a while, I didn’t laugh, I didn’t cry.. I just didn’t feel. Thank god for my kids, or I don’t know where I would have ended up. I pushed people away, I hid things that would allow anyone close to me to understand, I built walls that no person could ever break down.. It was bad.

Then enter Trevor. He came to me at my very worst, and in spite of all of the ugliness, he still chose me. He begged me to let him in, he slowly took down my walls, stuck beside mw while I worked through my demons, and showed me what real love looks and feels like.

Last night, I saw his card, and all I could think was “I was so unhappy and broken for so long, but now I can not believe how happy I am” and the tears just poured out of my eyes. He really is my soulmate, and my favorite person. He has shown me more love and compassion in the short 5 years that we have been together, than I ever thought I would or could know in a lifetime. I am still very much broken, and I still have a long way to go to feel confident that this won’t all fall apart around me…

Trevor and I may not have perfect pasts (in fact, they are both complete horror stories) but I know that with him beside me, we will have our very own perfect future. And even though things are in a bit of an upheaval again for us, there isn’t anyone on earth that I would rather navigate this mess with me than him.

IMG_0594

IMG_8370