Friday, December 28, 2007

Growing Up

Today is Zack's last day in the baby room. We officially got "the note" last night that told us that on Monday he would be moving up to the one year old room.






I am SOOO not ready for this!!

It almost makes me want to cry. He loves the teachers in his room and he gets so excited when we get to daycare because he knows he is going to play. I really hope that he enjoys his new room just as much as his old room.

His girlfriend is in there. (She was always kissing him when she was in his room.) And on the 7th his best friend will also be moving into that room so hopefully we will not have any "downer" days. I really don't think I could handle tax season AND a bout of separation anxiety!!

I fear my little heart would just not be strong enough and I might be forced to do something dumb like blow off my job and then you all could come visit me in the van that we would be living in down by the river!! :-)

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Happy Birthday!!

Today is Jake's 27th Birthday!! (I know... I robbed the cradle)

Happy Birthday Jake!! We are more proud of you than you will ever know!! You are doing such a wonderful job with your sobriety and you have now become the fantastic father I always knew you could be!!

We love you!! Have a great Birthday!!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Merry F***ing Christmas

I'm using a phrase my father used last night. Of course he was referring to something my mother and him did the night before which made me stick my fingers in my ears and go la la la.... but that's not the point....... (Yeah... my parents share WAY too much!!)

Anyhow the point is, love my family, love Jake's family, glad it's over!! There never fails to be a certain amount of drama when you pack that many relatives into that short of a time period. People are stressed, they have gotten very little sleep and there are invariably underlying issues that may have been something you said to so and so at someone else's wedding 2 years ago that tend to cause some tension.

So... how did your holiday go? Smooth sailing or glad it's over??

Sunday, December 23, 2007


The other day I used the word wrath in a post and someone I know was deeply offended by it. I didn't mean to offend them with the use of that word. To me, I use that word all the time in a casual way. If you look back to May 17th, I used it in a post to describe my son. (I'm not linking to it because it's late and I'm tired... just go there if you want to see it)

Anyhow, this got me to thinking about how to some people a word can be very offensive where as to others it does not have the same meaning.

Take for instance "Shut Up." When I was growing up if I said that to my sister it was cause to get soap put in my mouth. However, I know other families where that word is used every day in the place of be quiet with never a second thought.

So, what are your trigger words? What things do other people say that they think are no big deal but you find rude or offensive? Are you able to look past the fact that it may just be you who has a problem with that word or are you always offended every time someone uses it?

Friday, December 21, 2007

9 Months

Today is Jake's nine month sobriety birthday!! On March 20th, 2007 our lives changed forever when they pulled him out of that hotel room. (We count from the 21st since that was his first day sober)

I called my mom and told her to put a candle in his lunch!! :-)

Happy nine month birthday Jake!! We are ALL so proud of how far you've come!!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Unexpected Surprises

On my coffee table are two Christmas presents. They are wrapped and they are for me. In eleven years I have never, not once, gotten a Christmas present that I didn't either pick out or gotten nothing at all.

I think this year is looking up, perhaps we can end one of the worst years on record on a positive note!! :-)


I have had a recent situation in my life which has caused me to ponder a few things over the last couple of days. And since I am pondering them... ya'll can ponder them with me.

First pondering:

Why is it, as a society if something can be taken two different ways we AUTOMATICALLY assume it was meant the worse of the two ways? What ever happened to giving people the benefit of the doubt? Whenever I say something to Jake it appears as if he ALWAYS picks the worse of the two ways. Even though I normally mean the better of the two ways. (And I'm not just saying that because I want to sound good, really, I usually do. And if I don't, I'm going to tell him I don't.)

However, this doesn't just happen between Jake and I. It seems to happen in my writing also. For instance if I write the following paragraph:

Jill is a lovely girl. She is so pretty and really sweet. However, tonight when we were out she really bit the head off of this waiter. We were with my other friend and after Jill left she mentioned to me that she thought Jill was kind of a jerk. I tried to explain to her that it was sort of out of character for Jill but I could understand how she could get the wrong idea.

Now, reading that, what did you take away from it? Me, I take away that I have a good friend who apparently had a bad day and gave someone the wrong impression of her. However, some of the people in my life would take that as I am bashing Jill. And should Jill stumble upon it she would automatically assume that I hate her, even though that is not at all what I meant.

Why is that? I write a lot of things on this blog and depending on my mood they may come off sounding not at all how I meant them. However, you would think, at a bare minimum, the people who know me in real life would know what I meant or at least be willing to ask me.

Which brings me to point of ponderance number two:

You read something on some one's blog. You happen to know this person in real life and you also know the other person that they are writing about. You think that what the blog owner said was not nice. Do you:

a) write the blog owner and e-mail and ask them about it or call them on the telephone and ask them why they had written something about someone else you know.


b) Immediately go to the person they were writing about and tell them that the blog owner is writing mean things about them?? Which really only serves to hurt the person who was written about and then causes several hours of worry on the blog owners part because what they wrote was interpreted wrong and now they have to figure out how to "fix" the situation.

Obviously the majority of society will pick b, since that appears to be the way it usually happens with Dooce. If you have ever read some of her hate mail it seems to indicate that people jump first and ask questions later. And usually, people assume the worst. Why is that? Are we really living in a society where no one can just be a good person and have an off day? Do we really all have to assume the worst about one another?

For future reference there is a button over there, it says e-mail me. If I write something that you don't like click on it and ask me what I meant before assuming it was how you took it. Also, if I write something and it can be taken one of two ways, assume it was the better of the two ways. Especially if you are not going to e-mail me to ask about it!!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Silence is Golden

Do you know if you sit still and do nothing long enough you just might figure out what it is you want to do with your life?

In Al-anon we have a saying: "Don't just do something, sit there." It reminds us that sometimes the best thing to do is nothing at all. When your addict or alcoholic is using sometimes doing something only makes the situation worse and the best thing to do is really to keep your mouth shut.

In a way that's where I've been the last couple of weeks. Sitting still. Tax season is coming and I am really struggling this year. When I think about working long hours and being away from my son it makes me want to cry. Seriously... I'm tearing up as I write this.

Every single day he does something new and wonderful and I'm going to miss it. And I HATE that!! I always swore that I would never put a job before my children and here I am doing it. At this point I don't really have a choice. I could cut back my hours at work but to do that would mean taking a pay cut and we can't afford that right now. As it is we are still not back to taking on 100% of our financial responsibilities.

So, during the days I've been trying to make the most of my time at work. Get everything caught up that I can so that I'm not behind. I've been working through lunch and trying to stay 15 minutes late and come in 15 minutes early.

Then, in the evenings, instead of logging onto the computer to see what all of you are doing I am taking the extra time to read stories and sing silly songs. To take pictures and videos and to soak in every single waking moment of oohie gooie baby goodness. Perhaps I'm hoping I can build up a reserve kind of like a camel so I won't wither away in the next three and a half months.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007


Sorry to just leave you all hanging like that. We are fine. Jake is fine, I am fine, Zack is fine (except for the ear infection we are dealing with... AGAIN!!), and as far as I know nothing in our house has spontaneously combusted...

However, I guess I just blew my writing streak all to hell didn't I?

Oh well. I think perhaps I just needed to take some time to do some other things besides this website. I had Christmas letters to be written, and envelopes to be stuffed. I only have about 15-20 more to mail out.

I also have been trying to get the pictures in order for Zack's video. I'm running out of time and I need to get my butt in gear on that one.

On top of that, I'm up to my eyeballs in receipts and product ID numbers for this Microsoft lawsuit. The paperwork is due on Friday and I'm out of the office tomorrow so I'm trying to get it finished up today. I have spent the last two days digging through old paid invoices and all of our records trying to get proof of our purchases.

I'm on the home stretch now so hopefully in the next day or so I will reclaim my life and get back to posting regularly. Until then... eat something chocolate for me will ya??

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Much Needed Break

Ok so maybe a day off turned into two or three.... it was a MUCH needed break!! Friday was a REALLY long day. Things between Jake and I have been tense. He has reverted to some of his old behaviors and I'm not 100% sure why.

I can only guess that it is stress and worry about his dad's situation on top of worrying about an assignment he is supposed to be doing for his sponsor that he is putting off. Whatever it is it has caused him to act very depressed. All last week he was tired and seemed uninterested in what was going on at home. On top of that he was angry all the time and just very unpleasant to be around.

It all came to a head on Friday when we got into a huge argument on the phone. You know as much as I have been working on it, I still very much let his mood affect my mood some times and Friday was one of those days.

Luckily Friday night he talked to his sponsor before their meeting and then a little bit after their meeting and has seemed to be acting and feeling much better this weekend. Hopefully with a few more heart to hearts with him things will continue to improve.

In the mean time I have been reading a lot of my literature and am hoping to find the key to letting his moods be his moods and not letting them ruin my days.

Oh yeah, and the heavenly massage that Jess and I went and got on Saturday didn't hurt things either!! :-)

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Taking a day off....

I think the title pretty much sums it up. I had a better, but very busy day today. Now... I'm just in the mood to sit back and relax. I have been posting every day for over a month and I'm tired. Tomorrow I will try to come up with something incredibly mind blowing to get you through the weekend.

Like perhaps how much I HATE all of this snow...

See ya then!!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Post for Tomorrow

I have half of a post written in my head. However, it is now 8:00 and I just want to go to bed. The S.A.D. is hitting me. But more than that I think it's the addiction after affects. See that's the part they don't tell you about. You might get rid of the alcoholic but you are still left with the ick.

In the program they call this dry drunk periods. Between those and me trying to find my way in my own program I'm just tired. Overwhelmed and tired.

So for tonight I am going to lay down, watch a little Deal or no Deal and go to sleep. Tomorrow I will try to put into words what I am feeling right now. As a woman said in my meeting last night the feelings are there, the words are not.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Things that bring you here...

I have seen lots of people do this but have never really attempted to do it myself as I don't usually have very many hits from people who just stumble upon this website. However...

Recently I have been getting several more google hits so I thought I would try it today. Here are the ones from the last week...

Bouncing leg + nervous - actually I'm doing that right now. Although I don't think I'm really nervous about anything. I think I just do it. My dad used to do it, I do it without thinking about it. The only time when I didn't was when I was pregnant. I couldn't cross my legs effectively... in fact I'm not sure my one leg even knew there was another leg... so that sort of cut down on the leg bouncing.

Nervous Habits - Do we see a trend here?? I am hit number nine when you google nervous habits. NINE?? Really? Is there no one out there who can provide more information than this post??

Police Department Answering Machine - I am actually really surprised by the amount of hits i get for this. I posted it TWO years ago. Yet on a google search I am hit number 4... how is that possible??

Funny police automated answering machine - I'm number 3 when you search this way....

Ovulation stick what are they - There are MANY more people who have used MANY more of these than me... how did I get to be number 3??

will it be a snow day tomorrow in hamilton - I do not know. Where is Hamilton? Was it a snow day? I'm curious now...

"family circus" wrapping paper - This person must have really been disappointed to get my site as hit number one and another one called Armstrong Family Circus as number three... DAMN BLOGGERS!!

hot dog hallway - Now this is a hit I get at least once or twice a week. It stems back to a post I wrote a long while ago. One that still makes me laugh. Apparently this is also a song because there are lyrics listed. Although from what I know of this phrase I'm not sure it is a song that would be played on the radio....

Crib Assembly - Really? My website? Are you sure... it didn't go so well if you remember right... perhaps you need to keep looking

So... what brought you here??

Monday, December 03, 2007


Yesterday I went shopping with my mom. On our way home we stopped by the pasture down the road from me to feed the horses. As I stepped out of he vehicle I slid a few inches and commented to her wow... it's kind of slick I better make sure I don't fall.

Then, according to my mom, I took two steps and promptly disappeared out of site. I don't remember how I fell, I just know it hurt and I have the bruises to prove it. My left hip, leg and arm are all telling me today that I should be more careful on the ice.

As I laid there trying to assess whether I was alive or not I kept wondering why my mom didn't get out of the vehicle. Her answer, it was cold out there and she was just hoping I would get up on my own. When I didn't get right up she rolled down the window to ask if I was ok through her laughter.

Gee thanks mom!! Love you too!!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

To Cater or Not to Cater?

Ok guys. I need your assvice again. This parenting thing is tough work and so I once again and calling on the collective wisdom of all of you in blogger land.

Zack is becoming picky. Like REALLY picky. I don't know if his ears are bothering him, his teeth are bothering him or he has just decided that it is really fun to drive mommy over the edge but really, I'm not sure I can continue like this.

All weekend it has been nothing but hitting the spoon causing the food to fly across the kitchen and then screaming. Oh heaven help me the screaming.....

However, put the tray on the highchair and give him a few goldfish and he is all over it. Honestly, I thought this phase came when he was like two. He's not even one yet!!

So here's my question... what the hell do I do?? He's only 11 months. Isn't that too young to play the if you don't eat it you can go hungry game? However, it's not like he's doing this with unfamiliar foods. It is really all types of foods. Today he refused Mac & Cheese which he ate at my mom's and loved. Then for dinner he refused Ravioli which he had eaten last week and loved.

I got so frustrated I just put the mac & Cheese on his tray thinking maybe he just wanted to do it himself. This resulted in much mess and not much eating. Let's just say there was a bath involved.

So please... what do I do? Do I keep just giving him whatever he will eat or is he old enough to "go to bed hungry?" I don't want to end up being a short order cook to an 11 month old but at the same time I don't want to leave him hungry if he's not going to learn a lesson from it.

As always thank you in advance and feel free to comment anonymously if you think your opinion may cause controversy and you don't want to be "picked on."

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Because no one ever said I was smart...

So, NaBloPoMo is now officially over, and because I apparently didn't have enough punishment I have decided to participate in Holidailies. Same plan, different month. So just when you thought you were going to get rid of me....

Today is the first day. The only difference is that there are no prizes so if I miss a day I do not have to spend my 11:45 at night stressing and then running downstairs to post something, just ANYTHING because people... I NEED a prize!! (Not that I won one ANYWAY... but that's a whole different rant...)

So, here I am... again. Every day...

For those of you who are wondering, we did make it to our picture appointment today. The roads actually weren't that bad. Too bad because the place was PACKED!! Tons of children crying, running around, screaming, you get the point. LOTS of holiday pictures.

I will upload the pictures on Monday when I get to work because it takes 45 minutes to upload a single picture from here. They turned out pretty well. I wanted a picture for our holiday card and then a family picture for us. I got that plus a couple more. What can I say... I'm a sucker for my son's ADORABLE pictures.

So... I guess I'll see you tomorrow... and the day after that... and, well... you get the point.

Friday, November 30, 2007

Great Timing

Our family picture appointment for our Christmas card is tomorrow at 4:10 PM. It is at a picture studio that I took Zack to for his 9 month pictures and really liked. A studio which books up a month in advance.

This... Forecasters predict ice storm possible...

Is apparently also booked for tomorrow all day.

Great timing huh??

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Digging through the past

This is going to be short. It's after 10:00 and I'm just getting home. I haven't eaten so the bag of Cheetos is sitting next to me. (Yes Cheetos are a dinner food.)

I went over to Jake's dad's house tonight to pick up what I thought was one or two things that were left over from when he lived there. I was wrong. VERY, VERY wrong. I am looking at six boxes of toys and a little rocking chair. And that is not counting the trunk and other box that his sister took to go through because it contains both of their things.

Jake had a meeting so I went alone, as I said just expecting to pick up a couple of things. After we were finished loading the truck I sat down to talk with Jake's dad about some things.

Perhaps tomorrow I will actually get to work on Zack's pictures... oh wait... nope. Meeting tomorrow night. Maybe Saturday in the... gulp..... snow storm?? (More on that tomorrow....)

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


The days are getting shorter and the nights are getting longer and as the darkness settles in I find my mood getting darker along with it. I suppose some could call it Seasonal Affective Disorder (S.A.D.) but seeing as how I am a person who is grossly opposed to labels and medicines for such labels, I choose to just call it a funk.

If I really examine it I'm guessing that this year my "funk" has more to do with the fact that tax season is quickly approaching and less to do with the actual changing of the seasons. Zack is soon to be a year old (I tear up just writing that) and I'm going into my busiest time.

I'm going to have to begin working 60 hours per week which means that I am going to be missing all of those little moments that I love so much. Even though it's only for three and a half months it still makes me a little sad.

We need my salary. I have yet to find something that I like as much with better hours and the same pay. I love my job but at times like this I really wish we could afford for me to do something different. Something 8:30 - 3:30ish perhaps??

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

And so it begins...

I knew this day would come, I had just hoped it would be further down the road. Today the deputy that was investigating Jake before he left found out that he is back in town.

This weekend a trailer was stolen from the mobile home park where Jake works. I don't know what kind of trailer, possibly one to haul a car or a tool type trailer. Anyhow, the type isn't important. What is important is that before Jake left there was a trailer in our garage. A trailer which most likely was stolen and this was the detective that investigated said trailer.

So he called to the mobile home park and spoke with Jake and the first words out of his mouth were did you have anything to do with this? Followed by did you tell any of your "friends" about where a trailer might be found?

Jake handled himself well. He was respectful and told him that he was active in AA and did not speak to any of those people any more. HOWEVER... he is still a little freaked out. This man told me that he had some things on Jake, possibly not enough to charge him, but that if Jake kept his nose clean he would not charge him. Jake's biggest fear is that even though he is doing good something like this will come along and they will try to pin it on him because of his past.

I told him not to worry about it. He was with me, or with our friends all weekend so he has nothing to worry about. I have no doubt that he was not involved. (Which is saying a lot because in the past he would have been the first person I suspected.)

However, this has carried over into his attitude this evening. He was pissed off tonight and almost didn't go to the meeting because I tried to pick up a clean plate that he was going to use because it was sitting on the counter with the dirty plates. (Yes that really is the whole story, yes I know he was pissed about something else and he just took it out on me.)

Anyhow, I know that Jake has done nothing to cause this I just really wish he could have had a few more months to prove himself before he had to be judged by the one man who may have the power to "make or break" his job, his freedom, and his life.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Home Remedies

I hope you all had a great holiday. I'm still recovering. Jake's dad is at home now and hopefully he will continue to recover quickly.

Zack was up until 9:00 both Friday and Saturday night and was pretty grumpy both Saturday and Sunday so last night we got him into bed at 7:15. At 7:30 this morning he still wasn't stirring so I had to drag him out of bed into the cold to get him to daycare. Perhaps tonight will be another early night.

Well... I'll be back tomorrow... hopefully with some interesting reading. What would you guys like to see me post about? Come on... any one??

All right, well I'm going to leave you with this little story. I got this in an e-mail a month or so ago and it still makes me laugh so I thought I would share it all with you.

Home Remedies

1) If you are choking on an ice cube, simply pour a cup of boiling Water down your throat. Presto! The blockage will instantly remove itself.

2) Avoid cutting yourself when slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold while you chop.

3) Avoid arguments with the Mrs. about lifting the toilet seat by using the sink.

4) For high blood pressure sufferers: simply cut yourself and bleed for a few minutes, thus reducing the pressure in your veins. Remember to use a timer.

5) A mouse trap, placed on top of your alarm clock , will prevent you from rolling over and going back to sleep after you hit the snooze button.

6) If you have a bad cough, take a large dose of laxatives, then you will be afraid to cough.

7) You only need two tools in life - WD-40 and Duct Tape. If it doesn't move and should, use the WD-40. If it shouldn't move and does, use the duct tape.

Remember: Everyone seems normal until you get to know them.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Picture Day

Today we took Zack and his two cousins to have their picture taken. Jackson is about 21 months, Jamison is 5 months and Zack is 10 months. It was a chore to say the least. Every time one would start to smile the other one would look at them or look away or get up and run away.

It took some serious baby wrangling by the four adults that were there but we finally got some really cute pictures of the boys together. I will post them on Zack's website tomorrow when I get a fast internet connection.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Happy Birthday Molly!!

Today is Jake's sister Molly's birthday. We went to visit her and her family at Jake's mom's house tonight. They are back in town for Jake's dad's surgery.

We spent our evening watching all three boys (her two and mine) bounce off the walls in an effort to keep themselves awake for ... just ... one .... more ... minute.

When we left they were supposed to go out for the first time without the kids since August. Hope you guys have a great time and Molly we hope that you have a WONDERFUL birthday!!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Black Friday

Well... I did it again. I dragged my sorry butt out of bed at 4:30 and braved the crowds to try to get rock bottom prices on great merchandise.

I'm not sure I succeeded. I did get Jake and Zack taken care of and I bought a new digital camera for myself but other than that I had NO lists so my shopping was a little scarce.

The crowds on the other hand, there was nothing scarce about them.

Remind me again why I do this every year?

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Turkey Day!!

Hope you all had a turkey day as wonderful as this:

P.S. Went to see Jake's dad tonight. He is in A LOT of pain but has moved to a regular room and they finally got his pain meds regulated tonight so hopefully he will have a good night and feel much better in the morning.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Ok... it's LATE. This is going to be quick.

The surgery went fine. He's resting in ICU right now.

I did take my scanner to the hospital and scanned in some things but not as much as I would have been able to if I would have been able to sit at the table which was in the other room which was occupied by LOTS of other people.

So I scanned then and then scanned when I got to my sisters house while she played with Zack. Then I FINISHED!! Did you hear that?? DONE!! At least until I start the next batch of pictures.

It snowed today. A LOT!! The weather man said we were just supposed to get a dusting and not until tonight. It started about 9:00 and fell all day. On the news they said we got 4.8". How do these weather people keep their jobs?

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Where I've been...

I just noticed that Blogger had apparently reset my time-zone to one hour later than it was supposed to be. Somehow I had ended up on Guam time. (WTF?? I've never been to Guam... have you?) This would usually not be a problem but this weekend I posted something at 11:20 and so it moved it into 12:20 there by making it another day. If that screws up my NaBloPoMo I am SOO waging a formal complaint. Look... I didn't stay up WAY past my bedtime to post something for nothing!!

As for where I've been the last couple of days... things around here have been crazy!! A computer at work got broken and somehow that has become my job. Not that I know much more than the next guy. I did what they told me to do. It didn't work. So I called the tech people and we did an online meeting thing where they took over the computer and did their thing.

From 3:00 yesterday afternoon until 5:30 and then from 9:00 this morning until 10:45. However... it is now fixed and that is what matters isn't it?

When I haven't been doing that I have been running around trying to get everything done since I am taking yet ANOTHER day off tomorrow. At this rate I will be dipping into next years days by January and they don't renew until June!!

There is wi-fi at the hospital so perhaps you all have some deep thoughts that you want answered that I could type up while I wait. Heaven knows what else I'm going to do besides stare at people for five hours!!

(You wanna go to the cafeteria? How about now? Perhaps we should go to the gift shop? We could walk to the nursery and look at the babies.....)

Monday, November 19, 2007

More Random Thoughts

The surgery is Wednesday. It starts at 7:00 AM. Most of the family will be there, in the waiting room, staring at each other for 5 hours. Good times.

The picture scanning is coming along. It's not that I don't like to scan. I love to scan and I love to see all the history. What I don't like is scanning on a deadline. That stresses me out and makes it no fun.

So, that's what you need to know for now. Surgery on Wednesday, still scanning pictures in "free" time. (HaHa!! What's that??)

Do you think it would be rude to take my scanner and computer to the waiting room?

Sunday, November 18, 2007


Today is the 18th day in a row that I have posted. I'm pretty sure this is my longest posting streak.... oh.. EVER!! I'm tired. I've been scanning pictures all weekend. I've got 1,000 pictures scanned in and I think I still have about 200 more to go. The Thanksgiving deadline is looking doubtful.

So... the point is to post every day. So I'm posting... I'm just not posting much. Jake's dad saw the heart doctor today and they told him surgery on Wed. or Friday. So hopefully we will know more on that tomorrow.

Oh... and in closing, Zack got a tooth this weekend!! YEAH for Zack!! It's about time!!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Random Thoughts

I'm making it in just under the wire again tonight. 40 minutes to spare this time... yeah me.
I just got a spam on my last post. It was in Spanish. No Hablo Espanol. I get the spam thing to an extent. Want to advertise your website spam a bunch of people and hope someone clicks on it. But in Spanish on an English website?
On Wednesday I took Zack to the grocery store. In the parking lot I pushed the front end of the cart against my bumper and threw the paper towels and cat food into the back end of my jeep. As I turned to close the tail gate I noticed that the shopping cart was moving, almost tipping over. Some idiot in a big black truck was backing out and turned his truck and hit the shopping cart wedging it between his truck and my jeep.

Luckily Zack was turned sideways looking at me and so his hands and legs were out of the way and he was not injured. I was in shock and didn't yell at this guy didn't really do much of anything. Now the longer I think about it the more freaked out I get. The handle of the shopping cart that was wedged against his truck is where my little baby puts his little hands. If they had been there his hands would have been crushed between the truck and the shopping cart probably breaking all of his fingers. Add that to my list of things I am grateful for.
On Friday I went to the hospital to sit with Jake's family while his dad had more stints put into the arteries of his heart. When they did the angiogram to figure out which arteries needed to be unblocked they discovered that he had too many blockages for stints so he has to have open heart surgery. The earliest that they could get him in to see a doctor is the Tuesday after Thanksgiving even though one of the main arteries is 90% blocked and three other branches are 90%, 85% & 80% blocked.

While I was at dinner tonight I got a phone call from Jake's step-mom. His dad was admitted to the hospital today. He was having chest pains. They said he didn't have another heart attack but they want to keep a close eye on him so he has to stay for at least three days. He now gets a consultation with a doctor within 24 hours. Perhaps this is a blessing in disguise.
Finally, I was at dinner tonight with Jess & Katie and my phone rang. It was Jake. He called to tell me that he was sick. I was 30 minutes away, he is 26 years old. What did he want me to do about it? Jess and Katie almost peed their pants laughing when they realized that he had really called just to tell me he was sick.

They laughed even harder when I said this line, "What do you want me to do? Do you want me to feel sorry for you. I do honey. I'm very sorry that you are sick."

Friday, November 16, 2007

Gratitude Hour

Whew… I got in just under the wire on this one didn't I? You all probably thought I wasn't going to post today but I am true to my Nablomopo intentions so I'm sliding in with one hour and 20 minutes to spare!! :-)

Tonight Jake and I went to a joint Al-anon and AA meeting. The meeting is one they hold every year on the Friday before Thanksgiving and it is called Gratitude Hour. Basically what we did is everyone went around the room and talked a little bit about what they were grateful for.

Since it is so late and since I'm not sure what else I can write about before I fall asleep in front of the computer I'm going to post a little of what I'm grateful for here:

I am grateful for my son and that he is healthy and happy

I am grateful that Jake is sober and can be a productive member of our family

I am grateful that Jake was able to take the time he needed to get sober

I am grateful for all of our friends and family who stepped in and helped Zack and I out while Jake was away

I am grateful for all of you who have been such a strong support system to me

I am grateful for five am wake up calls because it means that my son is healthy and happy and ready for his day

I am even more grateful when he will take his binkie back and go to sleep for just another hour... please!!

I am grateful for my sons screaming because it means that I am able to hear him

I am grateful for my tired legs because it means I have been able to walk

I could go on and on. I have so much to be grateful for this holiday season and so I want to try to spend the next week thinking about what I do have instead of what I don't have. Because really you never know what you have until it is taken from you.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Minding my own Business

A big part of Al-anon is learning to turn the focus off of the alcoholic/addict in your life and onto yourself. While this seems like a simple concept to those of us on this side of the fence it is not nearly that simple.

When you are close to/living with and addict your thoughts and actions are consumed with them. You are always worrying about where they are and what they are doing. You make every decision in your life based on them. You stop doing things you like because you feel like you need to be there to "babysit" them. Every day, every hour, every second becomes about them and their addiction.

This becomes so much of a way of life that you completely forget to worry about yourself. To focus on your needs and your feelings. Instead you begin to take a back seat in every aspect of your life. At work the focus becomes on others. In your friendships you become wrapped up in their problems and their lives.

It begins to become about drama and living in that moment. Anyone who knows me will know that I am a very high stress, high drama person. I like to tell my stories as if every word might be the one that changes someones life. This is not a bad characteristic as long as I keep it about myself. After all, there has to be a drama queen in every bunch doesn't there??

It is when I get wrapped up in other people's lives and drama that I get into trouble. Take for instance a friend of mine....

Let me digress here for a moment, it has been brought to my attention that some of you think I only have one friend and when I say a friend of mine I am referring to her. Let me assure you that as isolated as I have made myself in these past years I do have more than one friend and sometimes I talk about them too... K??

Anyhow, this friend is having trouble with her significant other. The problems had been going on for a little while and she had not told me because she knew I would push her for details and they were details she didn't have the answers to and didn't really want to discuss.

At first this hurt my feelings but then I realized that she was right. I would have wanted to know every little bit and then I would have wanted to stick myself right into the middle of this little drama session.

Even now, after two and a half months in the program I find my mind wandering and trying to get lost in her situation. I know that it is not my place and I just need to listen to her, not get caught up in her story but it's hard for me. I know her significant other. I have this person's e-mail address and the thought has crossed my mind to e-mail them.

Then I have to stop. I need to keep reminding myself that this is not my problem; it is hers. It is my job to be her friend and to listen to what is going on but it is not my job to try to step in and fix things unless she asks me to.

Did I mention to you this is hard for me?? However, slowly, one meeting at a time I am trying to work on it. So I guess what I'm saying is if you know me IRL and you have an issue that you come to me about and I don't react the way I have in the past please don't take offense to it.

I'm trying really hard to take the focus off of others and put it on me, so that I can figure out who I am and what I want out of my life. It is not healthy for me to be so focused on everyone else's life and ignore my own.

Does that make any sense to anyone?

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Bedroom Conversations

"OMG the dogs stink so bad!! I think that they must take in too much air when they eat because they have bad gas!! I think we need to get them some G*s-X. Or perhaps some Be*no. Do you think they have Be*no for dogs?"

{still laughing}
{continuing to laugh}
"You know I'm gonna put that on the blog right?"

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


Ok.. I'm a firm believer that every serious post should be followed by one that is completely light hearted and nonsensical in nature. Therefore today we are going to talk about plastic toys... lots and lots of plastic toys...

More importantly today I am going to ask your advice about how to keep my house from being over run with plastic junk. So... sit back, take your thinking caps off and put on your assvice giving hats......

With Christmas just around the corner I find myself bracing for the onslaught of plastic "stuff." Already our living room and dining room are filled with bin upon bin of flashing, singing, noise making plastic toys.

We have a basketball hoop with plastic basketballs.
A ball "thingy" that you put the plastic balls into and they go around and come out at the bottom.

Various Zoo Animals
A telephone
A farm
You're getting the point right??

Suffice it to say saving the world with our Eco friendly toy choices is not in our future.

Now don't get me wrong, I know the boy needs toys. I get that, but here is where the problem comes in. We are having Christmas and he has grandparents and great-grandparents that just love him to death and want to buy him things. Ok... that I get...

But then a mere two and a half weeks later we have his birthday. And because I am one of those moms (the kind I always SWORE I would never be) I am throwing him a big first birthday party. And knowing his relatives this means that lots of them will show up and they will bring lots of plastic toys and honestly... how many toys does one child need??

So here is where you come in. I need to know what is appropriate to put on this invitation. I want people to bring him things, if their little heart desires, I would just like to steer them in a direction that doesn't find me swimming in more plastic toys than we know what to do with.

So what do you think?

Is it appropriate to suggest that since he has TONS of toys, putting money into his savings account would be a much better gesture? Or should I only bring it up if someone asks me what to give him?

Is it appropriate to suggest that if they MUST buy him something that it would be better to get something for 18-24 or older he has LOTS of toys for his current age? Or again should I only bring it up if someone asks me?

Finally, should I put his clothing size on the invitation? We have lots of clothes in 12 & 18 month sizes so I'm really wanting them to think a little larger.

OR... should I scrap all thoughts of this and just hope people bring lots of gift receipts and we can take back some of the superfluous plastic?

Monday, November 12, 2007

Lack of.......

I owe you a post. I've been mulling it over in my head now for about a week trying to come up with the exact right way to express the feelings that I had and what it is like to live where I lived.

Then on Friday I went to a meeting and one of the women read about having a lack of feelings when you get so far into the dark place that is living with an active addict. I spent this weekend thinking about that phrase, "lack of feelings." Was that where I was?

Then this morning it was confirmed for me. I was dropping Zack off at daycare and there was a little girl who was just starting. Her mom and her dad were there to drop her off and her mom immediately burst into tears when she handed her over.

I didn't do that.

I dropped him off and went to work and never called to check to see how he was doing. It wasn't that I didn't love Zack but I guarantee you that I didn't love him in the way I love him now. As of right now he has not gone through the phase where he cries when I leave him there. I guarantee you if you want to see a mommy blubbering like a fool catch me once he starts that phase. THEN I will cry...

The strange part is when I was in it I didn't realize how much I had really shut down but now looking back I am overwhelmed by my lack of anything...

When you live with an active addict you draw lines in the sand. If he does this I will... and at first he would just lightly tiptoe over the line and then immediately draw back. Eventually that line was blown clear apart by a violent surf and I had to choose to leave or draw another line.

I always drew another line. This process repeated its self over and over again. And every time I sank further and further into the hopeless desperation. If you've ever known an abused or abandoned child it is much of the same thing. Eventually you just start to shut down and stop feeling because it is too hard to deal with.

I can not tell you the number of times I searched through his car praying to G_D that I wouldn't find anything and ALWAYS finding something. The first time this happened I was SO hurt. Then eventually I just started expecting to find something. It was more of a bother than a hurt, I just sort of shut it down.

Then one night we got in a fight and he peeled out of the driveway. I remember being SO upset that he would leave me. He came back a couple of hours later but then as the months passed he left more and more often and the time until he would come back got later and later. The first time it almost killed me that he would leave and I remember pacing the house until he returned. By the 20th time it just seemed like old hat. He would return eventually, it was almost a relief to have a break for a few hours.

Then one night he didn't come home. And I remember the hurt of that night. I stayed up all night trying to call him. I would call every 15 minutes then every 30 minutes then every hour. I would drift off to sleep for an hour or so and then awake with a start and dial the phone hoping he would answer.

I can remember vividly the desperation as I dialed over and over again. I remember praying for him to just answer just let me know he was okay and then I remember when he would answer and not say a word. Just press send and then end hanging up on me. The first time that happened it tore me apart. I cried and cried and cussed the phone but slowly over months and years of this I just got used to it. I became numb to the feelings.

And for a couple of years this was the way we lived. He would pick a fight with me, find an excuse to leave and then call me at 6:00 the next morning telling me how sorry he was and come home. I slowly just became numb to all of it. The name calling, the fighting, the rage, the disappointment, the anger... it all just sort of melted into a giant blob of nothingness.

There was so much desperation and anger there but there was no way for me to express it. I would drive around for hours looking for him, take his keys, chase him out of the driveway ANYTHING to get him to stay home so I didn't have to feel that void of hopelessness and sorrow.

Then Zack was born and one night he didn't come home. And the next day he didn't call and that night he didn't come home and instead of anger there was just a void. I was trying desperately to bond with this little boy and all my mind was focusing on was Jake and where he was and why he wasn't there.

I was so deep into the hole that all I could feel was empty when I should have been overflowing with love and joy at just having given birth to the most beautiful, perfect child* in the universe. And instead of being happy and in love with my child I just felt empty. I didn't have that intense over protective thing that most parents do. I left him with my mom at 2 or 3 days old to go to W*l-mart and never thought twice about it.

At the time I justified it that I was just not wanting to take him there during cold and flu season and that I knew that he was safe at her house. Now, looking back, I know it was because I wasn't bonding with him the way I should have been. I was just one giant hole of emptiness.

And that, in a nut shell was how I got to where I was and why I stayed. You get SO far down into the hole of hopelessness and despair that you can't really see your way out. Being with the addict and living day to day, moment to moment in their addiction with them becomes a way of life.

I was used to hiding my purse in my car to keep him from stealing from us. I was used to locking up my checks to keep him from stealing them. I was used to juggling funds because his paycheck didn't come home or came home not whole because he had missed work or taken money and I didn't know about it. I was used to sleeping with my keys and his keys under my pillow or hidden somewhere throughout the house.

It is the here and now that I am not used to. It is all new to me to have all of these strong feelings and if you remember right on more than one occasion I have mental attacks of OMG my LIFE!! on this blog... those are because the rush of feelings can be very overwhelming.

I am now so in love with my son that I squish him every moment he will sit still long enough for me to do it. I can't get enough of him and it just pains me for other people to hold him or play with him. All of that stuff that was lost is slowly coming back and I'm realizing that while relapse might be a part of some people's recovery I'm not sure I could ever go back to that place I came from. I just think I've come too far forward and seen to much of the other side of the "mountain" to ever go back.

*no I'm not bias, why ever would you ask that??

Sunday, November 11, 2007


Tonight I went to the grocery store to pick up a few things for dinner. As I was leaving I noticed a sign on the door saying that they would be closing early the day before Thanksgiving. It was at this point it dawned on me that this will be Zack's first Thanksgiving.

Then I got a little gitty and I had to contain my excitement. As long as I can remember I have always loved this time of year. It starts with Thanksgiving and then rolls right into Christmas. I love getting together with family and I love all the food and festivities.

So what about you? Do you get all excited every year around this time of year or could you do without all the festivities??

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Cash or Charge?

As anyone who knows me will tell you I have had my share of debt in the past. Ok... who are we fooling here? I still have my share of debt it just happens to be that now we owe the bulk of it to my parents instead of to the credit card company. Let me tell you the interest is much better that way but I still don't feel much better about it.

Anyhow, I am cleaning my office this weekend... wait we have to pause now while Jess picks herself up off the floor. You alright there?? Do you need a moment to gather your composure?

Ok... moving on...

Part of cleaning the office is getting rid of old paperwork. As a general rule I am a thrower. If I don't need it or haven't used it in awhile I chuck it. My theory is if I need it again I will buy another one. However, this part of my psychie has NOT carried over into my office.

When it comes to paperwork I have drawers upon drawers of old receipts. Would you like to know what I bought for groceries in July of 1999 I can probably tell you. No really... let me just dig a little and ... ok... maybe not.

I seem to have inherited my mom's affliction for saving these things. The difference being she runs a business and needs these receipts for tax purposes, I on the other hand just need them in case, some day I might want to know how many times I ordered pizza when I was in college.

So, I have decided to downsize. I'm going through all of my old file folders and throwing out anything that is older than a year and doesn't pertain to my taxes. If it is older than a year I'm not going to need a receipt to take it back and I'm not going to need a statement to challenge a charge so the reason I'm hanging on to these things is what?

So far I've thrown out 1999 & 2000 and am moving my way through 2001 and the one common theme I've noticed is even back then I put a LOT of useless CRAP on credit cards. And the funny part is I haven't figured out why I did it. My parents helped me when I was in college. I didn't NEED to charge anything I could have just purchased it out right.

Especially the things I was charging. Groceries, stuff at Target, Christmas Presents. I racked up thousands of dollars of debt before I ever left college all because why? Because I needed something or because I wanted to prove I could pay my own way. Who was I kidding? No one can pay their own way working 20 hours a week for $6.35 per hour.

Now, I'm stuck with all of this debt wishing I could go back and kick myself. Just pay it off idiot!! You don't want to be stuck paying on those groceries from 2001 in 2007 do you?

I guess the good part of me looking through all of this is it is slowly making me realize that I need to be MUCH more selective about what I spend my money on** so that someday, possibly in 2056, we can know what it's like to not have a credit card bill to pay.

**Yes, french fries covered in cheese and bacon are a necessity... don't question me on this, it is not up for discussion!!

Friday, November 09, 2007

Busy, Busy, Busy

Zack decided to get up at 5:45 this morning so any time I had to post then just flew right out the window. He is never all that pleasant when he gets up that early. Then I had a training class today so I was out of the office. There goes my lunch hour post.

So I thought I would come home this afternoon (training was over at 3:30), put Zack down for a nap and write then. Would you like to know who wouldn't nap? Oh and I couldn't leave him in his crib for quiet time because someone, who shall remain nameless, picked today to learn how to pull himself up and was peaking over the edge of the crib when I went up there to check on him.

So, needless to day we need to lower the crib mattress. As I type this he is pulling himself up on the coffee table reaching for the picture frame. Oh man... I am so in over my head here!! Gotta go rescue the cat and the breakables.

However, have no fear. It's NaBloPoMo month so I will be back tomorrow, and the next day, and the day after that....

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Drawing a Blank

Like I told you yesterday I had a post all written in my head but I'm not really in that place today and I need to be in "that place" to be able to adequately portray to you what it feels like to live with an addict. So... perhaps tomorrow, or tonight we'll see how it goes.

Lately I've been having an issue with Jake and since I know how much you guys LOVE to give advice I thought I'd throw it out here. I'm not good at compliments. At least according to him I'm not.

I try to say something like, "It is so nice to come back because I forgot something and not have to worry about what you are doing." Which I read as you are doing a great job and I'm really proud of you. Which he reads as wow you were such a screw up before it's a good thing you're finally getting your shit together.

See the problem? It seems as if when I give the compliments I'm TRYING to compare and contrast so as to say wow things are much better but all he sees is himself feeling bad because of how bad things were before. Make sense?

So is the solution simply to never mention the past ever again. It's over, move on with my life, never to be seen again? Or is there some other way to phrase it in which I can still compare things now (good) to things then (bad) without making him feel bad?

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

How do you choose?

I had a post all written in my head this morning about the feelings of hopelessness and loss you have when you are with and active addict but it will have to wait for tomorrow. I was checking some of my regular sites and I came upon this woman who DESPERATELY needs your support.

She is/was 20 weeks pregnant with a little boy. They just found out that her son has bilateral renal agenesis which means that he has no kidneys. You can not live without kidneys. So, she had to make the heartbreaking decision of whether to carry this baby for another 20 weeks knowing that as soon as he was born (or within 4 hours of birth according to Dr. Google) he would die or to be induced now.

Yesterday afternoon she was supposed to be induced.

I can not imagine having to make this choice and my heart hurts for this woman that I do not know. I had, once before, heard of a woman who was pregnant and they discovered that the baby did not have any lungs. Being a deeply religious family they decided not to terminate and instead carried their child to term knowing that every day closer that they got to the baby's birthday was one day closer to its death.

I can not imagine shopping for caskets instead of shopping for cribs. Knowing that the only thing keeping your baby alive was the fact that it remained inside of you. What a feeling of hopelessness and complete and utter sadness.

Before I had Zack I said oh no to these things. I thought they were sad but they did not touch me like they do now. Now when I hear about this my heart hurts for these people. I find myself wiping away tears of sadness for a person I do not even know. I find myself clinging to my son extra hard at night knowing that when he was born I could celebrate.

So today, instead of focusing on me I ask that you go there and spend a few minutes focusing on her and letting her know that there are people who are sending out their thoughts and their prayers for her. It will not make her son alright but hopefully it will help her to get through the dark place that I can only imagine that she will be in for awhile.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

I Know You Won't

I know you don't mean to be mean to me
'Cause when you want to you can make me feel like belong
We belong
Lately you make me feel all I am is a back-up plan
I say I'm done and then you smile at me and I forget
Everything I said

I buy into those eyes
And into your lies

You say you'll call, but I know you
You say you're coming home, but I know you
You say you'll call, but I know you won't
You say you'll call, but I know you won't

I wish you were where you're supposed to be
Close to me
But here I am just starring at this candle burning out

And still no sound

Of footsteps on my stairs
Or your voice anywhere

You say you'll call, but I know you
You say you're coming home, but I know you
You say you'll call, but I know you won't
You say you'll call, but I know you won't

You say you'll call, but I know you
You say you're coming home, but I know you
You say you'll call, but I know you won't
You say you'll call, but I know you won't

--Carrie Underwood Song

It is amazing to me how easy it is to bring back a flood of emotions. I can be going along my normal way and then the song I put up yesterday and this song today can be played and all of the sudden I'm right back where I was.

I have a meeting tonight. I think I need a meeting tonight. Jake has been irritable and moody for the last two or three days. I think the time change has gotten him into a funk. On top of that Zack has also been moody and irritable because of his double ear infection. Oh yes... I did say double ear infection and yes, we did just do this a month ago. Don't remind me.

Anyhow, I find it strange how just one song can bring all of those feelings back. It takes me right back to that place where I was a year ago. With the time change all of that has already come back to me. I am remembering last year, being very pregnant and very much alone. Calling him and calling him and always thinking that this promise would be the one.

This time he said he was coming home... he will be here.

And waiting and waiting and worrying and wondering and trying to sleep but never knowing if he was alive or dead. This song embodies all of that. The waiting the wondering and the knowledge in the back of my mind that just because he says it doesn't mean it will happen.

The knowledge that you have tried to push out of your mind because THIS time was going to be different and perhaps he's just late at work, perhaps his car broke down, perhaps... perhaps... perhaps....

Monday, November 05, 2007


My friend Jess really likes this song by Sugerland Called Stay. You can view the music video here at YouTube. The video is awesome, it still makes me tear up.

However, it wasn't until very recently that I have been able to understand exactly why it is that this song really speaks to me. I have listened to this song over and over and I understand that it is about someone who is being cheated on, which I have been, but my connection seemed deeper than that. In fact, it wasn't until this weekend, as I was discussing distorted thinking that it really dawned on me.

When you live with an addict your thinking becomes so distorted that you begin to think their problem is because of you. You convince yourself that if they loved you more they would stay with you instead of going out to use. Perhaps if you show them more love they will stay with you and not go out to use. I was so convinced that if I intercepted the calls from the druggies I could convince them not to call again or I could convince Jake to stay. Perhaps if he never knew they called he wouldn't want to go out and party with them he would want to stay home with me.

All of these are failed attempts to try to control this disease known as addiction. What I have learned in Al-anon is that the addict has a compulsion to use. It doesn't matter how much they love anyone their addiction is stronger than their love. That is why a mother could leave her child to go use drugs. That is why my husband could leave Zack and I in the hospital to go get high. He was driven to do so.

With that said, it doesn't make what I went through any easier and it doesn't make it OK. It just makes me understand it a little more and know that from watching this video and seeing the pain in her face that was a place that I was in for 10 years and a place I never want to go back to.

Towards the end of his journey I was not strong enough to take the necessary steps myself. It took some very dear friends of mine to remind me that I needed to think of myself and my son first and that we deserved better and then for them to help me find the strengh to commit Jake.

I don't think I will ever look at this song the way other people do, but I still love it. Just in a different way than others do. I have put the lyrics below and put in my own so that you can hear it the way I hear it. The way that reminds me of the pain I never want to return to.

I've been sittin' here stairin' at the clock on the wall
And I've been layin' here prayin' Prayin' she {they} won't call
It's just another call from home {them} and you'll get it and be gone and I'll be cryin'

And I'll be beggin' you baby
Beg you not to leave
But I'll be left here waitin'
My Heart on my sleeve
Oh for the next time we'll be here
Seems like a million years and I think I'm dyin'

What do I have to do to make you see
She {They} can't love you like me

Why don't you stay
I'm down on my knees
I'm so tired of bein' lonely
Don't I give you what you need
When she {they} calls you to go
There is one thing you should know
We don't have to live this way
Baby, why don't you stay

You keep tellin' me baby
There will come a time
When you will leave her arms {stop using}
And forever be in mine
But I don't think that's the truth
And I don't like bein' used and I'm tired of waitin'

It's too much pain to have to bare
To love a man you have to share

Why don't you stay
I'm down on my knees
I'm so tired of bein' lonely
Don't I give you what you need
When she {they} calls you to go
There is one thing you should know
We don't have to live this way
Baby, why don't you stay

I can't take it any longer but my will is gettin' stronger
And I think I know just what I have to do
I can't waste another minute
After all that I've put in it
I've given you my best
Why does she {they} get the best of you
So next time you find you wanna leave her bed {their house} for mine

Why don't you stay
I'm up off my knees
I'm so tired of bein' lonely
You can't give me what I need
When she {they} begs you not to go
There is one thing you should know
I don't have to live this way
Baby why don't you stay

F-ing Daylight Savings Time

How do you teach a 9 month old that just because it was 6:30 YESTERDAY... today it is 5:30 and we should stay in bed? Pretty please?? Just for 15 minutes more??

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Lost in Translation

Whew... I think I'm going to make it through my first weekend of posting... ever. YEAH me!! Only three more weekends to go!! :-)

So a few months ago I downloaded this software onto my computer. It takes your blog posts and puts them into book format. It's not perfect, I can't get the pages to look exactly like I want since there are only 10 - 15 page layouts to choose from but it is a start. So I slurped up (that's what the software calls it) my entries from 2005.

For the past month or so I have been messing with them and changing page layouts and colors and such. All of this in an effort to get the book ready to "publish." Basically another paper product to add to my already buried office. But we won't talk about that.

Anyhow, after a month of doing this it just dawned on me yesterday that none of the comments are on these posts. And more importantly I didn't really miss them. I was so caught up in remembering all the things I was writing about and enjoying that trip down memory lane that I never even noticed that none of the comments had been picked up in the "slurping."

Lately I've had some people come into the comments who obviously have not been reading long. They come here, they make some hurtful or off the wall comment about a situation which they really don't know much about and then they move on with their day.

Sometimes for me, at least, it is hard to remember that these people don't know me. I have to remember to take some of these comments for what they are, a passing drive by. As if someone on the street yelled something at me. They wouldn't know me and I wouldn't let my feelings be hurt by them but somehow in the blog world those "boundaries" if you will get lost.

We find ourselves getting attached to these people, whom we barely know and we get hurt if they say something rude or inconsiderate. However, what we must remember is that these people in the computer only know little bits of our lives. They know what we tell them, no more and no less.

These people also have lives of their own and sometimes they can just be having a bad day and take it out in the comment section of some one's blog. Sometimes when the screen is protecting us we hide behind it and say things we would never dream of saying in real life.

Thus is the nature of the beast. So while I love all of you coming here and following my life I need to remember that if someone stops reading my site I can't take it personally. Sometimes people just get busy or their interest change. I know I have about 80 blogs on my favorites and I don't always get to them all every week. Sometimes I only get to some of them once a month.

It's not that I have developed a disliking for the ones I don't check it's just that things get busy or my real life gets in the way of my blog life. I also seem to check into the ones who are having a crisis more often then the ones who are living regular life. I notice the same things happening in the stats of my blog. When things are not going well or when I have lots to write about more people come back more often then when things are boring.

Such is the way it is. No more... no less....

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Off My Rocker

The other day I received a very nice e-mail from a lovely lady who very politely explained to me that she thought I was certifiably insane.

Let me digress for a moment, if you have a question for me and you don't want to post it here feel free to e-mail me. If you don't agree with my opinion on something but don't want to post it here feel free to e-mail me. Anything else you want me to know but don't want to post it here... e-mail it to me. I accept and read all e-mails and unless you call me all kinds of names I will politely respond to them too. The link to my e-mail is over there to your right ------>

Ok, now back to the point of this post. Me... crazy... oh yes... it's all coming back to me now. This is not the first time I have heard that I'm crazy and it is not the first time I've thought it to myself either. That is what I was talking about in my last post when I said living with an addict or being close with an addict can distort your thinking and your perception of reality.

Let me note for the record just a few of the things I have done in my past that I now look upon as absolutely asinine.

I used to sleep with my keys in my pillow case.

I would take his keys and hide them.

I would drive around at all hours of the night looking for him even though I had no idea where he would be. I have driven up and down streets and neighborhoods just because I thought maybe, possibly I might run into him or see his vehicle.

I have sat up at nights and called him 20 - 30 times in 10 minutes just trying to get him to answer the phone.

I have chased him around in my vehicle.

For the longest time I thought it was normal to get up every 20 - 30 minutes and go downstairs just to make sure he was still watching TV or passed out on the couch. I thought everyone did this. I thought I was just being a good wife.

Shall I go on? At this point I think you probably get the point.

Living with/being close to an addict makes you sick without you realizing that you are ill. You try to force them to do what you want them to do not realizing that if they want to use they will do it no matter what.

The guilt I carry around is astronomical for this fact. I tried to force my husband to be here and so in a small way when he used in this house with my son here it was because I was so worried about him being here I couldn't see past the end of my nose to realize that him being here wasn't going to stop him from using.

So yes, I was insane. I became that way through 10 1/2 years of trying to control Jake's addition. Now, after all of that time, it is my turn. It is my turn to take care of myself and I am doing that through Al-anon and through trying to do more things with my friends or just for me.

However, the key words you need to focus on are I am trying to get better. In Al-anon we call that progress, not perfection. Sometimes I may say things that sound completely crazy and usually it is because I have slipped back into an old behavior/pattern or I have not fully worked on that part of myself yet.

Eventually, some day, I may become sane again. Until then, bear with me will ya? It's a process....

Friday, November 02, 2007

More about Sponsorship

I called another person on my list last night. She is a really nice lady and I really enjoyed our conversation. For those of you who are wondering or have expressed concern, no... I do not spend the entire time talking to them about my friend or even my husband. Al-anon is not about anyone but me. I have mentioned situations to them but only to get their opinion on how I handled something or a suggestion on how I should handle it in the future.

We actually spend most of the time on the phone with them just getting to know me and a little bit about my story. Last night we talked about where I work and what I do the night before I talked to the lady a little bit about why I came to Al-anon and how long I have been in the program.

Oh and speaking of me, for the commenter who posted last night to tell me that other people have problems and I should stop focusing so much on myself... um this is my blog. That's what you do on a blog is talk about yourself. That's the point. If you don't like it, navigate yourself to someone else's blog. K?

Now... on to the true meaning of this post. Laura asked me some questions about Al-anon and AA and since I love to educate those who really want to know I thought I would share today. First of all here is her comment for those of you who didn't get a chance to read it:

I have another couple questions about AA and the sponsor thing. First, are Al-anon and AA the same thing? In your last post it sounded like they weren't, but I thought they were both just different ways of shortening the name "Alcoholics Anonymous." Is that incorrect?

Second, I am a little confused as to why you need a sponsor. I have never been part of AA or Al-Anon so I have no idea how it works, but I had always assumed that the sponsors were for alcoholic's/addicts to help them get through their addiction. That is obviously not your problem, you are not the addict, you are a family member of an addict. What purpose do the 12 steps in recovery from addiction serve for you, if you're not an addict to begin with?

To address her first question. No Al-anon and AA are not the same thing. Al-anon is for friends and family members of addicts/alcoholics. Most of the Al-anon literature refers to alcoholics but one of the things you learn pretty quickly in the program is that an addict is an addict no matter what their drug of choice.

To quote from the official Al-anon website:

It is estimated that each alcoholic affects the lives of at least four other people... alcoholism is truly a family disease. No matter what relationship you have with an alcoholic, whether they are still drinking or not, all who have been affected by someone else’s drinking can find solutions that lead to serenity in the Al-Anon/Alateen fellowship.

Many who come to Al-Anon/Alateen are in despair, feeling hopeless, unable to believe that things can ever change. We want our lives to be different, but nothing we have done has brought about change. We all come to Al-Anon because we want and need help.

In Al-Anon and Alateen, members share their own experience, strength, and hope with each other. You will meet others who share your feelings and frustrations, if not your exact situation. We come together to learn a better way of life, to find happiness whether the alcoholic is still drinking or not.

As for question number two this was something that even I did not understand when I first entered Al-anon. As I have been there for a couple of months it has begun to become more clear. AA members need sponsors to help them work the 12 steps and get through their recovery. Al-anon members need the same thing.

Most people who have never been to Al-anon do not realize just how sick the family members of alcoholics/addicts can get. As my husband's disease got worse so did my own. As they say in Al-anon:

Your thinking can become distorted by trying to force solutions. You can become irritable and irrational without knowing it. (And believe me when I tell you I have made a lot of irrational decisions while trying to "force" him to be sober.)

The 12 steps are to help me to understand my part in what happened. I did not make Jake use but I did have a part in enabling his addiction. I covered for him I didn't file charges when he stole from me and from family members. Instead I just covered checks/etc. I worked harder and juggled money when he would miss work and we would be short. I did a lot of things that enabled him and so in a way I got sick right along with him.

On Friday of last week Jess came with me to an Al-anon meeting. It was a speaker meeting where a very nice woman I know told her story and it just seemed like it was my story all over again. She talked about becoming sick with her husband. About getting in the car at 3 AM to drive around looking for him. About paying for their house while he laid on the couch all day, about all of the crazy things that she had done that I have also done.

The Al-anon 12 steps are a way to work through all of the anger and resentment that I have towards Jake and also a way for me to dig myself out of the dark hole I have been in for the last 10 years. They are to help me gain a new way of thinking about myself and about my life so that God forbid something like this ever happens again I will be able to better cope and won't turn into such a crazy person.

Does this help answer the questions? Does anyone have any more questions? I'm really an open book and I will answer just about anything that you want to know, so ask away. Post anonymously if you want to ask but don't want others to know who you are.

Thursday, November 01, 2007


I think perhaps some of you, ok all of you because none of you are probably in the program, are a little confused about how sponsorship works. I can't ask any of my friends to be my sponsor. I can't ask anyone I know to be my sponsor. (At least not anyone I knew before the program.) I can't ask anyone I live with or am very close to.

Your sponsor is someone who is in the program. They are someone who has been in the program for several years and who has worked the steps and gone through all of this before. The purpose of a sponsor is to have someone to talk to about what you are going through and to bounce ideas off of.

Like I said before they can tell you what has worked for them but they are not supposed to tell you what to do or try to make decisions for you. They just listen and help where they can. When I pick a sponsor they will also help me work the steps. One of the steps is basically doing a self evaluation (Hey Jess... I was wrong on Friday... the self evaluation is step four!!) and then admitting the things you found during your self evaluation to another human being. (Your sponsor.)

So, about my friend. She was never even in the running for my sponsor. She knows that. I think she has a pretty good understanding of how that part of the program works. Our issue has nothing to do with her being my sponsor or me picking a sponsor. The only way the two are related is I was able to talk to someone in the program about my actions and whether I was acting in a certain way or not. I did not go to them for justification nor did they give me justification.

Justification is what I was looking for before I was in the program. Right now, I don't care who is wrong or who is right. It doesn't matter. The only thing I care about is whether I handled myself in an appropriate manner and whether I was polite and courteous to another person. Whether I agreed with them or not. Right or wrong has no relevance in my world right now. Right or wrong just causes stress.

Calling a Friend

Welcome to the first day of National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo for short). I've got lots and lots of things floating around in my head so I should be able to fill this least for a few days.

Last night I made a huge jump forward in my recovery and called a woman I met in Al-anon. On Tuesday I went to a meeting and mentioned that Jake had been pushing me to get a sponsor but I was unsure how to go about doing this.

Let me just digress here for just a moment for those of you not in the program. In AA you pretty much go to a meeting or two, sit next to someone and ask them to be your sponsor. They are encouraged to get sponsors right away so they have people to call and people to be accountable to. In Al-anon they encourage you to go to several meetings and just meet people. See who you jive with and then call them a few times before you pick a sponsor.

The sponsor is the person with which you will work the 12 steps. They share their experiences with you and they give you advice but under no circumstances do they tell you what you should do. They leave that up to you to make your own choices.

So anyhow, when I asked about the sponsor at my meeting I was jumped after the meeting by two or three women who offered up their phone numbers and told me to just start calling people and seeing who I clicked with and who I didn't.

So yesterday I had an awful day. I was conflicted about my actions in certain circumstances and about the actions of a good friend of mine. I knew that I needed to talk to someone in the program but I was afraid to do so. I'm not sure why it was so frightening to me to call up someone but I just don't like to do it. If given the choice I will send an e-mail or a text message far before I will pick up the phone to call.

The whole way home I went back and forth about was I going to call, was I not... then finally after I put Zack to bed I decided to just call. The conversation went really well. We discussed my actions and my controlling nature and she explained that it is what we learn from living with the addict. She also re-affirmed that when it comes to my son I am not controlling I am being a good mom.

She helped me to work through what to do when I am confronted with conflict. Her suggestion was that I can only worry about myself and my actions. If I feel that I have handled a situation appropriately or reacted appropriately than it is all on the other person and how they choose to handle things.

In the past if Jake and I, or a friend and I, would get in a fight I would stand my ground for all of 2.5 seconds. Then I would fold like a pretzel. Eventually things would get all turned around and I would end up apologizing for something that I was angry about in the first place. This is the quality that allowed Jake to pretty much walk all over me for so long. I just wanted to make everything all better because I couldn't STAND for there to be hard feelings. She helped me to see that I need to believe in myself and the decisions that I make. I can't control others and if they want to be mad at me or not speak to me that is their choice. All I can do is continue to act towards them as I always have and let them choose how they act towards me.

I also talked to her about Jake and about ways to let go but still have him help me around the house. It was a really good conversation and I'm really glad that I called her. Tonight I have another person on the list that I am going to call and I hope that conversation goes just as well.

In the end I'm not sure if any of these women will end up being my sponsor but it is really nice to be able to talk to people on a one on one basis who truly understand what it is like to have lived where I have lived and gone through what I have gone through.

Hopefully this is a good step in a positive direction.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!!

Happy Halloween from the Cutest Turtle I know!!

I'm at a loss for words about what to post right now so I thought I'd give you a really cute picture of Zack in his costume while I gather my thoughts. I'll take the picture down in a few days but the thoughts will remain.

Tomorrow I begin NaBloPoMo so you should be seeing A LOT more posts from me. The idea of the program is to post something every day in the month of November. Even days that are holidays and/or weekends. And you are also supposed to post it ON that day... not back date it. So... I'm going to try and see how it goes.
Other than that, I'm struggling right now with some personal things. Jake has been urging me to get a sponsor but when I brought it up in my meeting last night I got mixed feelings on it. Some people told me to wait until I found someone I was comfortable with, some told me to just start calling Al-anon people and see who I click with, and some others told me to just pick someone and ask them to be my sponsor and then if it doesn't work out to pick someone else.
I think I will try the calling someone thing tonight. I have a friend who I am very close to but with whom I don't always see eye to eye. This has put me in a tough spot lately because sometimes she will say things to me that hurt my feelings, not realizing that it does so. She told me the other night that sometimes she speaks to me as if she is speaking to someone else about me instead of realizing that I am the one that is going through all of this.
One of the things I love most about her is her ability to tell me like it is but it seems like sometimes when I do the same to her I offend her without meaning to. So now I'm struggling. How much of the things that I'm bothered by are truly because I am who I am and I like to control situations and how much are things I should be bothered by? I think only another Al-anon member can answer this for me.
Only someone who has walked in my shoes and has worked their program and come out on the other side is going to be able to see these situations for what they are. Right now I just feel confused and conflicted. There is a part of me that still feels like I'm right about certain situations and like they are getting contorted and twisted to make me look like I'm wrong because she wants to be right (her and I we are very similar creatures) and then there is another part of me that thinks maybe I'm just grasping for something, anything to hold on to and to be in control of.
Anyway, if I get hooked up with someone, and even if I don't, I'm sure that these self examination topics should give me plenty of material to fill my one a day posting requirement. It's just a matter of whether I can find the time to put the post UP every day!! :-)