2018-04-08 This is My Blog and I’ll Rant if I Want To

I’m not gonna sugar coat this. My ex-husband is a supreme douchebag. My gawd.. it’s good that my BS threshold is so high, otherwise I’d probably have been pushed past a breaking point way before now.

The funny thing is, he gets so butt-hurt when people talk shit about his behaviors. If you do douchy things, people are going to call you a douche bag. It’s that simple. And my responsibility to have your back and defend you ended in March 15, 2010 when I signed those papers in a court of law. A bitter-sweet day, but absolutely necessary for me to pursue a better life.

For 8 years I’ve tried very hard to walk a line where on one side, was him and his behaviors and tactics and the other was my children and my desire to maintain positive relationships for their sake.

I still have a responsibility to be amiable for them, but my ability to spin a positive light around him despite his life decisions is waning. I just can’t.

Breaking news this week.. he quit his job. The one that he got to end his 4 year streak of not having a job. The one that my kids’ health insurance was through. The one that he complained about every single time I saw him because he hated it. “Boo-hoo”.

You mean to tell me you didn’t like your job (or just working probably). Welcome to the real world bro. Lots of people Work a job they don’t like because it serves a purpose.. income and insurance. Security for your family. Your children who depend on you to man up and be an adult and not just quit because you are not happy.

Ok.. back it up. People might give me the side-eye saying this. Didn’t I do the same thing last year?? Yes. But here’s the difference.

1. I had a plan and enough savings to carry me a certain amount of months.

2. I’ve worked 20+ years in my field and have a great reputation and mad skillz (spelling isn’t one of them). 😜 So I knew I could get another job without too much trouble. He doesn’t have that.

3. Before I quit, I made sure he could take over the insurance for the kids with his employer. I would never have quit without having that figured out. Even if it was through the stupid Marketplace.

Three strikes and your out dude!!

He stopped paying child support years ago and I never pressed that issue because we mutually agreed to change our parenting plan and terms without officially going back through the courts. Not only that, but I’ve carried tje insurance and paid all medical expenses for the 4 years. Even when insurance switched back to him, I still paid the medical bills out of my HSA.

I even went to the courthouse recently to sign a waiver saying he was caught up on his child support because in the eyes of the court, he was delinquent. So I’ve gone above and beyond on his financial behalf. For the record, and in hindsight, signing that was stupid and I will never do it again. I lost all leverage to get anything out of him. However, once that amount starts piling up again, shit is gonna be different.

You act like a deadbeat, people are gonna know and I’m done enabling that. The kids are old enough now to understand and recognize it too and I’m over trying to smooth that over too. Z needs to get checked out for an issue and I told her she’ll have to wait until mom can arrange coverage because dad quit his job. She can form her own opinion about the situation.

I don’t know how I would possibly spin this anyway. I’m not even gonna try. I’m also going to TRY not to dwell on it. I have to get insurance for them no matter what and can’t depend on him to do it.

He tried to tell me marketplace was going to take 90 days and a prerequisite was filing 2017 taxes. Both of those things were bold face lies. I know, because I spent part of my Friday afternoon going through the forms online. I can get coverage by May 1st. I called him out on it and he just acted stupid. Derp.

What an idiot.

Ok.. I have to be done and find my happy place again. Now where did I put that mantra??

Oh yeah.

Peace and Love,

~Miss SugarCookie

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2018-03-23 Friday Freakout

Yesterday the sun came out finally and the temps went up enough the kids and I had our first trampoline session of the year.

It was also admittedly a struggle to choose that over sitting down to read or write given my state of mind due to my self inflicted situation, which is another looming deadline and being even farther behind than I have in past situations.

It shouldn’t be a struggle, it should be a no brainer. The kids want to spend time with me outside and it was a beautiful day. What is life if it’s not living for those moments. And my days like this are numbered. I don’t ever want to sacrifice another minute with my kids for school or Work or anything really. Pretty soon the’ll be grown and gone and the work will still be there waiting for me.

We jumped until the sun went down. It was glorious.

I accomplished very little last night. Our cat jumped the fence and didn’t come back right away like she normally would. By 10pm, we were all freaking out about that and nobody was able to do a thing.

By the time she returned, it was too late to do anything but go to bed.

I tried to read, unsuccessfully, and consequently, I’m already behind on the master plan I put together yesterday for completing my March packet for the MFA program. Do I double up today? Is that even possible? What can I sacrifice to catch up? I don’t have answers, only more questions.

Yesterday I was freaking out about it and perhaps the goal today is to NOT repeat that and just dig in and make progress. I should change the title of this post to “Friday UN-Freakout”.

Well, those books are not going to read themselves…

Getting a Grip,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-03-13 Fire 🔥 and Ice ❄️

I said upfront that it is what it is. Organic is a nice way to say unprocessed and unfiltered. That means that sometimes you get unfiltered awesomeness and sometimes it’s just rotten. Today I have a rant about my ex (husband) and if I remember before I’m done writing, I also want to contemplate a dream I had and what it might mean.

First, the ex. This guy! Flame 🔥 on!!

This guy who never cared about being a partner in parenting when our kids were small. This guy who was so career driven “for us” but found time to go out and drink and screw around when he was in town, yet didn’t have time to change a lightbulb or drive his kids to swim class.

This guy who was perpetually stuck in his 20s and wanted what he wanted and didn’t care until well after our divorce.

Having 30% responsibility for the kids when we separated was eye opening to him. He slowly realized how difficult things can be and also what rewards were also possible. Now he cherishes his children and they are his world, but that took a long time.

I remember the first time he texted that he was up all night with Z who was sick. I was all like “how is she now?” (And welcome to the real world, no shit it’s hard).

I went through years getting letters from the school about how my children were habitually tardy and he always said that it wasn’t him. He was always the master of convincing himself he was never to blame. I’m the data nerd, so I had the calendar with the schedule and crosschecked that with the detail reports I requested from the school. Surprise surprise, the kids were late on his mornings. I knew that already because I was rarely late.

Then we went through a phase where his vehicle wouldn’t start in the mornings. Despite it being at least 8 years newer than mine AND the same kind of car (Ford Escape), he would text and say “my car won’t start, can you take the kids?”. What was I supposed to do, say no?

He always made excuses.. and each time that was a reminder to me why were not married anymore. Over time (8 years this week actually), he’s gotten better, and now he has a job again and a girlfriend and takes more responsibility for things.

Every once in a while, though, I still get those reminders. This week Is his daughter’s Sweet 16 party which is a big deal to her, and I’m taking care of ALL of it, including hosting at my house and paying for everything. The only thing I physically can’t do is get 8 people to the escape room event and back. I asked for his help with carpool over two weeks ago and then confirmed again last week.

Then yesterday Z and I were picking something up at his house I’m the middle of the day, and he saunters out in his pajamas and comes up to my car window to say hi.

“I took the day off because I hate my job” he says. I conceal my eye roll by briefly looking down and then just smile and nod. I proceed to confirm the carpool again (because this is necessary) and I’m glad I did because he proceeds to tell me he can’t because he has a job interview IN DENVER. WTF??!

I’m really low on good alternatives. I’m not friends with the other parents and it’s short notice to take Work off early anyway. My sister is out of town and my other sister doesn’t have a car and I’ve got no friends close to this area of town. My parents aren’t close enough for it to be reasonable, but that’s my next best option.

He asked about Uber and I replied, “sure, I’m sure my dumping 3 teenage girls in a car with a complete stranger is going to go over really well… no!”.

This morning I requested he ask his girlfriend to help. She’s lived with him un officially for a while now and officially for the past several months. I think it’s not a stretch to ask. I forced his hand on it and she said yes, so now it’s all worked out. I’m still left feeling a little “WTF” though. Seriously.

There is so much more I could rant about, but perhaps that’s enough for now. I gotta turn down that flame so I can get to more important things, like how I almost died in a dream. It left me with icy chills. ❄️ I say “Almost” because when it happened, I woke up instantly!!

This was the night before last but you don’t experience something like that and forget it easily. I was with a few people at an event and the only one I remember was my step sister, Julie. We were looking up watching some event on tvs. There were multiple side by side screens like they have at the gym or at a sports bar mounted above where we were standing.

The screen on the right was showing some party outdoors with mountains covered in snow on the background. I had interest in this because I had family there too, or so I felt in my dream. It was too small to know for certain but I just felt it.

The scene didn’t last long. All at once you could see in the distance on the TV that there was an avalanche of snow coming down the mountain. At first it was small, and then in an instant it became massive and a spit second later, it overtook that party and I barely had time to consider the fact that my family was all crushed under that snow before a giant white mass came down upon us and where we were. Another instant later I woke with the fear of death in me. I was at that event and buried under an avalanche of snow and debris. I was terrified and it truly took me a few seconds to recognize it was a dream and I was fine. I didn’t really go back to sleep after that.

Like I said, that was yesterday but it’s still lingering in my brain. It happened so fast and what I just described is all I remember. I wonder what that could all mean?

No matter, time to get back to reality now and the party happening in a few hours here in Sunny Nebraska where there are no snow filled mountains! 😉

Flame 🔥 Off,

~Miss SugarCookie

2018-03-07 Exactly Sixteen Years Ago

Last night I could barely keep my eyes open past 9PM, I was so tired. I’m truly not sure what I was so tired from, because I barely did anything at all yesterday. I didn’t really work and did mostly running around shopping for my Z and a little writing. Dinner with the kids and my mom and her husband for Z’s bday at Texas roadhouse, and then back home. I tried to read and my eyes were literally blurring the words on the page. I think that is a combination of being tired and just getting older. Nothing is what it used to be, but that is another topic for a different day.

It’s now 2:22 AM and I’ve just gone AMA (my own) and taken half a Xanax because I just can’t deal with a sleepless night right now with so much that needs to get happen tomorrow and the remainder of the week. Funny the way it is, when there is a lull, I can sleep just fine, but as soon as things start getting a little hectic that’s when the insomnia monster rears its ugly head. Of course, it is always when one needs it the most. As a consequence of the medicine, I may not (will hopefully not) be writing long.

The main topic at hand is my Z and her 16th birthday today!! Today is one of those days that’s nice to look back on previous years. Just before I started writing, I read my blog post from last year and sure enough, that day all came rushing back to me. Right now, though, in the middle of the night and all alone, I’m inclined to think further back than that to 16 years ago when I woke around midnight to go to the bathroom and my water broke.

By 1AM we were probably in the hospital all checked in and by this time, around 2:30, I was heavy into having contractions and probably still under the delusion that I was going to give birth “naturally”. That is, without pain meds. Laughable.

By 2ish, I was becoming increasingly aware of just how bad labor pains really could be. You hear stories, but you just never know. Everyones pain threshold is relative too so you really just can’t gauge it until you feel it for yourself. It was bad. So that is where I was at Exactly Sixteen Years Ago, right this very minute.

By 3 I think I caved and asked for something to help and they gave me some sort of oral med to “take the edge off”, which only made me feel super loopy and didn’t even touch my pain. After that, I was a hot mess. Brian’s parents showed up and in my heightened emotional state I started to cry and demand they leave immediately. I had requested they not be there so why they decided to come anyway in the middle of the night was beyond me. I didn’t want my parents there either, but they respected my wishes and waited until after Z was born to grace us with their presence.

Maybe around 4 or 5 I finally got an epidural, I am not quite sure what time it was, but I was in so much pain, I didn’t even feel that giant needle going in. The only thing I remember was that what followed was sweet relief and I was pissed at myself for being so stubborn and waiting so long. The few hours between then and delivery in the 8 o’clock hour were not memorable, thank goodness.

There’s more details I could share, but honestly, “aint nobody got time for that”.

It’s a little tough for me to believe that the very same 6 pound, 6 ounce baby girl they placed into my arms that morning is now 16 and almost an adult. She’s an amazing person and so full of love and life. She’s a talented artist, intelligent, beautiful, sassy, and very, very thoughtful. I could not ask for a better person to call my “princess pudding pie”.

Today will be a pretty routine day for us with going out to dinner again tonight being the only celebratory event (apparently, celebrations always revolve around food). Tomorrow is when her and I really get into putting our party hats on, because we’re both taking the day off to spend time together doing whatever she wants to do. Just the two of us. I look forward to that every year.

Perhaps we will take a walk down memory lane together and go through her baby books and oogle over how incredibly cute she was. We’ll see what kind of mood she is in.. you never know with teenagers. She might want to sleep until noon and then just go shopping for the afternoon. /Shrug

Anyway, I should let the meds take over now and try and sleep. Getting some of these thoughts down in words will hopefully help release my mind so I can get quality sleep for the rest of the night and be refreshed tomorrow to do “all the other things”.

Sleepy in Nebraska,
~Miss SugarCookie

2017-11-01 Maui Day 3 🚧

We had quite an adventure today. Since we decided to visit the volcano tomorrow, due to the forecast, the plan for the day was pretty open. Z wanted to go to a couple places way up north on the northwest part of the island that she saw on a YouTube video earlier in the year so that is what we decided to do. Little did we know how interesting that would turn out to be.

Due to the fact that we drove the west coastline yesterday, we opted to drive the alternate route today, which was a narrow highway with twists and turns up through rainforest along the coast. The road was pretty fun actually and I didn’t have nearly the anxiety about it as I did with one I drove in Utah last year. Then the highway ended and it became a single lane road. The distance to our destination was relatively short, but the drive seemed long. We got to about 4 miles from the Nakalele Blowhole and ran right into a “road closed sign”. It was completely shut down with no way to get through. There was a cliff with drops to the ocean on one side, and solid rock wall on the other. There was nowhere to go but back the way we came.. and so we did.

However, just like everything else in life, I can’t be told “no” about anything without putting my foot down and saying “oh really, just watch me”. So we drove all the way back to the part of the main juncture of the island and proceeded to travel up the entire west coast.

When we arrived at the spot, we parked the car by the side of the highway and got out. We walked a short distance to a precipice that overlooked the entire scene. To the right of me, I could see the giant land formation which was the very same one I saw two hours before. We had been so damn close. We took a few pictures and then started our decent to the water below. It was fun climbing down the rocks, sort of racing to see who could find the best way down. The position of the sun caused our shadows to be cast on the ground below which was worthy of a pause to take a pic but it wasn’t long before we were down at sea level.

We wandered around a bit, being a little leery of getting too close to the hole because there were several warning signs about the danger of getting pulled into the ocean.

As I stood on the black, rocky volcanic ground and looked out at the waves crashing on the coastline to the right and to the left of me, I began to cry. It was such a fantastic view. I couldn’t believe how far I had come, both literally and figuratively. I watched my children from a brief distance and became overwhelmed with joy.

Z was sitting, patiently waiting for the next big eruption of water through the hole, her phone, perfectly positioned and ready to take a picture of the action. C had a small stick and was poking at tiny crabs that were in the of water that had collected in pools on the ground around us. We were all in our happy places.

We’re happy and healthy and getting to experience the most amazing things on this trip. It may be years before they truly appreciate it, or recognize how wonderful all of this is, but right then, in that moment, I did. I felt it like the ocean waves crashing on the rocks next to me. I felt how powerful nature can be and how powerful life is. And it wasn’t just about that moment, it was about the road we travelled to get there.

We drove the entire circle around Northwest Maui, save the estimated 4 or 5 miles of road that were closed just to get to a blowhole where the ocean waves crash up like a geyser. We had traveled across half of the United States and part of the Pacific Ocean to get to where we are today. Like life, the journey is long, but it is totally worth it.

And just like today, one can run into roadblocks in life and have to go the long way around, but if you keep going, you eventually make it to wherever it is you wanted to go. I’ve had quite a detour in my life these past couple of years, but I am still traveling and now quite positive I am on the right track.

***

We never made it to the second stop on the agenda, which was the Olivine pools. There are supposed to be crystal pools, again, formed out of the lave flow but containing crystal clear water you can swim in. The guidebook had really sketchy instructions on how to get there and we were pretty sure we were in the right spot, but because of our two hour delay it was much later in the day than I intended and the sun was going down. There was nobody around and we would have had to hike down through the woods to get there and it was definitely no the place you want to get lost in the dark alone. So we headed back.

Driving back down the west coast I finally got to see the sunset. We stopped the car along the side of the road and waked down to a little rocky area. I’ve concluded that we can’t go anywhere near the ocean without C wanting to get in it. 😃 It’s OK though, I want to take my time through each and every one of these moments that I can. Before too long, they will be grown and gone and I know I’m going to look back and wish I slowed down more often. I let him play a little while I did a thing I’ve always liked to do, which is hunt for pretty rocks.

We had a good day despite the “detour”. Now we are back at Ken’s house and just doing a bit of relaxing before bed. I’ve got lots more driving the next 3 days so I’m going to need all the rest I can get.

Aloha Ahiahi
~Miss SugarCookie

2017-08-21 The Very Worst Thing Ever

As predicted after we hit about 2PM yesterday things just went as they went and it was all fine, mostly. Z convinced me to book a hotel in Lincoln at the last minute so we could be closer to our Eclipse destination and NOT have to stay in a tent. They (both kids) threatened mutiny if I made them sleep in a tent again after their long Yellowstone vacation with their dad where they tented most nights. I’m actually OK with it too because sleeping on the ground is not appealing to me anymore. I’m not sure if it ever was. As it turns out, the hotel option turned out to be the very worst thing ever for me, but I will get to that.

Actually booking the hotel alleviated several of my concerns and came with a few added bonuses. First and foremost, actually committing to something helped all by itself for some reason. Like just pulling the trigger on it made a little of my anxiety about the uncertainty of the day melt away. Like I stated, we will be closer to our destination and avoid some traffic traveling there late in the day. In the AM, the kids will get to swim and they have free breakfast so those are both marks in the “win” column.

Our guests arrived shortly after 3, I think, and then we did the complimentary tour of our castle. The kids played a little while we unloaded the bikes from the car and then there was about 45 minutes of fidgeting with tires and seats and brakes and such to get people ready to go. I was worried about the ride because of C. He does not ride his bike and he hates it. Every time he rides, he’s unsteady and crashes. He just has never gotten enough practice to really gain skill and confidence and then is quick to quit when he takes a fall.

My concerns were warranted. About 3/4 the way to the trail he faltered navigating some planters on the downtown Papillion sidewalk and completely kinked his back break line and got a nasty cut down his leg. After that he wanted to quit, but the rest of the crew was already ahead and the trail. We walked the bike that distance and then our new friends helped fix the bike at least enough to continue on. We did just a short distance on the trail, 84th street to 72nd, and then turned back because we needed to be back to the house by 6:15 to greet someone picking up his car for use these next couple of days. It took C and I a bit to get back, and they were all onto something else by the time we arrived home. My conclusion there was that C needs a bigger bike that fits him better and more time riding to really get the hang of it. After today, it will probably take some serious incentives to pull off though.

After that, I cooked dinner and the kids played some more and everything went off pretty much as expected. I never really got rid of all my angst. I was very guarded the entire time and felt very much like I was trying really hard to be engaged in the conversation while appearing to effortlessly put on this fabulous meal AND be a good parent. I’m noticing a pattern of behavior with my interactions with this person and I’m still trying to figure that out, but it’s probably deserving of a blog all of its own.

The time ticked away and past 8PM I started to think we need to be getting them back home (because now they were without a car), which was a good 40 to 45 minute round trip through the heart of the city. When I arrived back home it was just about 10PM and the kids were pretty much ready to jump in the car to drive to Lincoln. The drive from Omaha was quick and there was thankfully not a lot of traffic, which was of course part of the bonus of staying in a hotel there. What I did not count on, however, was arriving at the hotel only to be greeted by the very worst thing ever (for me), as soon as we walked into our room.

As I opened the door to room 116 of this very average Quality Inn my olfactory sense was immediately hit with a burst of sickly floral perfume. It was if someone over-did some terrible air freshener to cover up what was undoubtable another horrible smell. As soon as took a few breaths, my headache was triggered. I get migraines from the smell of certain things like cigarette smoke or the scent of baby powder or perfume. For this reason, I avoid walking through that section of any department store and never go into a bath and body works. Having had this my whole entire adult life, I know what scents are OK and what scents cause an issue and it is typically the more floral ones that trigger my headache.

I was tired and the kids were tired, so I thought I would just try and get right to sleep and sleep typically is the magic trick that makes the migraine disappear. At home, I have meds that make me sleepy and alleviate my nausea but I didn’t even think to bring any of that because we would not even be gone a whole day. Plus, I’ve only had one migraine in the last year, so the chances of that seemed very unlikely. But I wasn’t counting on what was behind door number 116.

I could not sleep. I laid in the bed breathing in that terrible smell and tried to make my mind calm and not focus on the pain. I was sick to my stomach and the song “Sucker for Pain” from the movie Suicide squad was on repeat in my brain. It was terrible. I knew I couldn’t ask for a different room because we arrived so late and the hotel was completely booked. In fact the lady on the phone earlier in the day said we got the very last room.

At 3AM I got up to ask the front desk if they had pain meds. They didn’t (that does not sound like a Quality hotel to me). The nice lady at the front desk told me there was a gas station just down the block so I grabbed my keys and went to get some Tylenol. Typically I would take Excedrin, but they didn’t have any. I had caffeine in my car so the acetaminophen plus caffeine would have to do.

When I got back to the room, I vomited. Then I took the meds on an empty stomach and went back to bed. I laid there for another few hours and slowly got to the point where my head was feeling a little better, but sleep never came. I was breathing through my mouth the entire time and at one point rolled over and had a deep breath through my nose, and it was like it triggered my headache all over again. Damn.

At 5:30 I looked at the clock and my brain started doing math on how long I would have to wait to take more tylenol. Two hours. Damn.

At 6:00 I gave up trying to sleep and opened my phone. The light on the screen didn’t make me wince (which typically happens with a migraine), so I knew at that point the worst was over and all that was left was to deal with a lingering headache, and the fact that I had no sleep and still need to get the crew to Beatrice by 11AM.

At 6:30 I got my laptop out and started to write. That pretty much takes me to right up to the present moment. It is 7:30 and I just took my second round of Tylenol with a cup of coffee. It’s going to be a long day today. It’s already been a long day and now I’m getting ready to start round 2. Hopefully, the Migraine and sleepless night really are the worst thing that will happen. I’m sure there are much worse things that could happen which is me just trying to look on the bright side of things.

Speaking of bright sides. The sky is sunny and mostly clear now and I am hoping it will stay that way for the eclipse today at 1PM.

Happy Total Eclipse Day,
~Miss SugarCookie

2017-08-16 Dinner Time – Always a Good Time…

Just go make your own meal already. OK, this post is pretty much going to be a rant about my daughter. So sorry in advance for the less than stellar parenting that is about to be revealed.

Today was the first day of school. She was so tired when she came home that she slept for three hours as soon as she hit the bed in her room. Poor girl. Something must have taken a lot today. However, this means she missed dinner. C and I had a lovely meal and I will admit that after really over working myself today with the exercise I did not have any reservations about the pizza and red wine that I made for dinner (C just had pizza BTW). We did have some slices left and that was the first choice offered to her when she “came to”. That was met by a resounding “NO”.

Then pepperoni. No
A ham sandwich. No
A taco. No
Cereal. No.
Spaghetti . No
Oranges. No
Blueberries. No
An apple. No
Corn. No
Broccoli. No
Eggs. No “You know I hate eggs”.
A hamburger patty. No
Chips and salsa. No
Taco meat with chips (aka nachos). No
Bacon. No

Me – “Seriously, no to bacon? There is something really wrong with you”. Really.

So I said I was done and I left the room. She can just starve. I don’t care.

Here are things that we have on hand that I did not offer because I know already she won’t eat them…

Granola bars.
Pistachios
Almonds
Sunflower seeds.
Oatmeal.
Rice.
Steakums (yes they still make those).
Shrimp
Brussel Sprouts
Kale
Tomatos
Zucchini

Here are the things we have on hand that I did not offer because I really do care…

Ice Cream
Doritos
Hershey’s kisses
Cheetos
Pancakes
Toast

Really, I’m amiable to almost anything. Most parents would probably just say “You didn’t eat what was for dinner so you can just be hungry”. I can’t force her to eat and at this point I am way past caring. Me and my two glasses of wine are way past caring and already super focussed on maybe catching up on GOT before it’s time to go to sleep. We get to do this again tomorrow so I’m just going to let go of today and that will be that.

I’m sure season six episode five will be awesome. I’m going to forget what just happened and turn my attention in that direction.

Bon Appétit,
~Miss SugarCookie