Monday, November 3, 2008


#1 I had to change my snip-it about me cause I turned 30 a couple weeks ago and I think it's false advertising to say I'm I'm depressed. I can't be 30, that means I'm old. 30 was that age when you were a kid that you looked at as being "an adult." This milestone, by the way, coincided with me moving back into my parents house...damn I'm a loser. So, I've changed the blog and now I have to accept that I'm 30.

#2 The Short of It has been hopelessly lost on our blog. I know she's busy and stuff but I think that last 5 posts are mine and I'm sure our 3 faithful readers are tired of hearing from me! On second thought, I have no job and nothing to do, can't be too hard on The Short of It, but someone PLEASE leave a comment begging her to tell the story of her mom's falling down boyfriend!!

#3 Again, I'm 30, and I've had several, how is it that one goes about finding a job, I'm totally lost? I thought this would be easy....I'm educated, I've had good, long term jobs with great references, I'm a responsible and presentable person! This sucks ass! I never thought I'd be so willing to go back to work after my month off, but I am! I'm bored and I need money!

#4 My oldest turned 9 on Saturday....damn I'm old! I think I'm gonna rename this post "I'm Old"!!

**The Long of It**

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Prostitute Fridays....

So, back at the ranch (and by ranch I mean funny farm) I needed a TB test to begin substitute teaching. #1 not really sure I wanna substitute but living at ma and pa's house and need money and #2 I have no insurance, I'm not working, so where does one go to get a TB test?? I'll tell you where....the FREE CLINIC! Oh the joys of the free clinic....which, by the way, I might add that it's not really free! False advertising!! Now, don't get me wrong, I'm really not a snob, I don't think only bad people go to free clinics, but it's just not where I would prefer to spend a Friday morning. So, I muster all the courage I have to walk in and say, "I need a TB test"....pause in my brain tells me to add something to this sentence so they don't think I think that I actually have TB...."I need it to substitute teach." This was a bad move because instead of making myself look better, I actually succeeded in making the girl roll her eyes like she didn't believe me. I mine as well have said "I'm here for my monthly antibiotics for my syphilis and gonorrhea."

At this point she asks me to fill out some paperwork and pay my "not so free" $20. There were definitely some confusing and complicated questions on the paperwork. One asked for my monthly income....this is a free clinic, why do I need monthly income....left it blank. Second, they asked my occupation or if I had insurance. THIS IS A FREE CLINIC PEOPLE!! Hurry up and test me for TB before I actually contract it sitting here!! I turn in the papers to the eye-rolling troll lady and she again asks me what my income is and I tell her "I have none, that's why I'm here!" This time her eyes went so far up in her head I didn't think they were gonna come back! She tells me to take a seat and they will call me.

To this point, I had not really been aware of the numerous people in the oh so clean waiting room, but as I sat down for my hour wait for a stupid little shot, I began to notice a theme. Clearly, Friday's are "Prostitute STD Check" days at the free clinic and I wish someone would have sent me that memo. There was a plethora of pleather miniskirts and leopard print tube tops, clear platform heels and blue eyeshadow. I'm not sure if they were gearing up for the weekend rush, but they had clearly all been shopping for new outfits together recently. Maybe Thursday is discount day at the 5 and Dime?! I felt a twinge of guilt as I sat on my sanctimonious high-horse and began to judge them, but that soon passed and again I was hearing the voice in my head laughing hysterically at the fact that they were all dressed up to come to the free clinic. I then became fearful for the seat I was sitting in hoping beyond hope that my jeans were thick enough to fight off any yuckiness! They one by one were called back by a nurse and they one by one came out with a mysterious brown paper bag....antibiotics? condoms? a combo pack? I'll never know....I soon got my shot, ran screaming from the place, drove home as fast as I could, and showered for 30 which point I realized I had to go back to that place in three days to have the test read, I'm sure I'm gonna get charged for that too!!

**The Long of It**

Monday, October 6, 2008

The name of the game....

Disappointment really seems to be the name of the game for me lately and it's a hard pill to swallow. As my job has declined and the money as dried up, I made the very hard decision to move back where I came from (again, if I told ya I'd have to kill ya). I was, out of the blue, presented with a job in the same town as The Short of It and really wanted that to work out....for more see "Mothers and Daughters." So, now I have myself all geared up to be on my own, and have my own place again, and take this adventure as a single parent. It had taken me a good amount of time to accept the change in direction and embrace what my life would have been. And then today, the lady I was supposed to meet with to finalize the job, tells me the job no longer's moving to New York!
How do I take another disappointment? It's literally been one thing after marriage fails, my good paying job goes to shit, gotta move home with mom and dad and leave my life and the people that I have grown to love, great job I could have had goes out the window....where does it end? I really try to listen when people say "whatever is supposed to happen will" and "enjoy the journey" but it's becoming comical just how much in life goes wrong! So here I am, looking for a job again, sleepin in my mom's guest room, getting scolded to clean the bathroom and all I can help but feel is that I'm moving backward.

**The Long of It**

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Burial @ Sea....

I know I've been a little M.I.A. Ok, we both have been a little M.I.A. Life can really get tough sometimes and it takes the little things to remind us that it aint so bad. My grandmother died in March and we delayed the burial because she wanted her ashes scattered into the ocean. Seeing as her birthday is October 2nd, we decided that it would be a perfect time to charter a boat, gather the entire fam (from Louisiana to Guatemala....I kid you not) and put Grandma to rest. We all congregated on California's central coast, including her 4 children and their 2 spouses, 4 grandchildren and their 2 spouses, and 9 great-grandchildren and boarded a boat to the open water. We brought Grandma in her beautiful urn....actually she was in a thick plastic bag in the urn and a lot of flowers to accompany the ashes. When we were safely 3 miles out (we don't want Grandma ending up in the drinking water) the boat stopped and people began to share stories and thoughts about our Grandma. It was nice and touching and the sun peaked out of the fog....very picturesque. When we were done it was time for my mom to scatter the ashes and we started to throw the flowers into the water and say our individual goodbyes. When she was sufficiently memorialized the boat started again and the captain drove the boat in a circle 3 times to draw the ashes and flowers together and mark the space where she would rest. I stood on the back of the boat with my mom and my dad, my brother and my boys and we all cried....and then halfway through the second turn around the burial site, a seagull landed in the middle of the flowers and ashes. It was hilarious. This oblivious little bird landed right on the middle of our beloved grandmother's ashes and looked at us like we were crazy. It made us all laugh as we circled this sacred spot watching the seagull watch us and as we pulled away from the spot, the bird flew out of the water and in the opposite direction. Life is funny that way person's holy ground is another creature's pit stop.

**The Long of It**

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Phone call

I got the strangest phone call from my ex. He wanted to know if he was a bad father (do you really want to ask me this question); He told me that he has been struggling with the choices he made and wondering if he has screwed our kids up with his selfishness (no, only because they have such an amazing mother and wonderful stepfather); He told me that we could have loved each other forever (ummm, I was never really in love with you). Yeah, I had some reactions to what he was saying, but there I was talking calmness into him. Instead of the things I really wanted to say to him, I reassured him that he is a good father, that we needed to get a divorce because we weren't happy and that in the best of times we were dysfunctional.

The whole conversation left me with a bit of an ego boost. I had the distinct impression that if I weren't remarried he would have asked me to give him another chance, there was an acknowledgement that he lost the best thing that ever happened to him. After the ego deflation that our divorce was, it was nice to have the ego boost. More than anything, though, it was WEIRD! Is it really still my job to comfort him, to put him back together when he is upset? Yeah, I'm a coward, I could have told him some things straight up... but in reality I'm glad that he shit on our marriage. I'm grateful that he gave me an excuse to get out of the bad marriage. And, if I must be honest, I guess I'm glad that we still have a decent enough relationship that he feels comfortable enough to call me with his weird self-doubt issues.

--The Short of It

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Mother and Daughter....

I believe I have just entered the Twilight Zone. I have been planning on relocating back to where I came from (location withheld cause if I told ya I'd have to kill ya) which consisted of me, a 30 year old mother of 2 moving back in with her parents. Ok, not the ideal situation but a good stepping stone.....and by stepping stone I mean free babysitting and the occasional $20 from my dad. My mom has been UBER excited about this, in short because she lost her own mother in March and has been very lonely. Mostly, I think she wants her grandbabies back and it really has nothing to do with my existence. Anyway, I am in the process of being offered a very good job about an hour and a half from my parents and in the same town as The Short of It (very exciting to say the least). Doesn't sound like a problem you say.....very true, but my mother is not having it!

I knew she wouldn't be happy, but I assumed that she would be happy for me to be able to get a good job, support myself and my boys, and not live at their house until I'm 60 and only have 12 cats to keep me company. Apparently not.....she wasted no time in contacting everyone she knew in the small town they live in to find me a comparable job. She has no clue she will never be able to find something for the $ these other fools are offering me! Yet, I continue to let her spin her wheels. Basically, this just keeps her off the phone with me and spares me the constant attitude and shameless guilt trip.

I understand she's lonely and wants us to be there to fulfill her every Nana dream, but what about me? I've definitely been lost in this whole the way, I lived with them for 4 months about 2 years ago and I can still see the scars on my wrists, it was torture! So, I have a choice to make....either I lose my mind or my mom will....what to do?? If I lose my mind, bad things like excessive drinking and sex with strangers. If my mom loses her mind, she will bake too many cookies, sew buttons on anything that will stand still, and insist on babysitting every weekend. Not a hard choice for me, but oh the guilt is unbearable!

**The Long of It**

The crockpot theory

I've heard women compared to crockpots. When it comes to sex, we are like a crockpot, there needs to be a low heat all day long to get us cookin' at night in the bedroom. We aren't just light switches that can be turned on at will, we take some simmering.

Lately, my husband has been shameful at the simmering part. He's been sitting on the couch, doing nothing a lot lately. My house is a mess with things that he hasn't picked up. He hasn't been overly affectionate throughout the day. I bought a new microwave, but wasn't quite strong enough to move the old one, I needed his help. Waiting for him to "get around to it," the new one sat in the living room for a week before he moved the old one, now the old one is sitting on my kitchen table for another week! We got a new bed for the girls, Sunday we took down their old bunkbed. My husband moved it to the livingroom where it is still sitting and I have tripped over it daily for the last 4 days.

My husband hasn't done anything wrong, he just hasn't done anything right this week!

Where does that leave me at night, in the bedroom? It leaves me feeling cold. Last night, I could tell he clearly wanted some action, it had been a while. He was doing the bedroom foreplay things to make it happen, but he hadn't done the all day foreplay things. What do you do with that? I laid there trying to figure out if I should ignore him and roll over and go to sleep. Should I lay there and just let him do his thing? Should I participate and hope that I would start to get in the mood? The quandary going on in my head sure wasn't doing anything to help turn me on. I've never had this issue with my husband, normally he is generous, attentive and anything but lazy around the house. But I had the problem last night! I didn't want to get into the whole discussion right there in bed about what was going on. I'll admit it... in the end, I participated only enough so that he didn't catch on. Mainly, I let him do his thing. He wasn't getting all of the bells and whistles in the bedroom, I wasn't happy with him.

One night of pity sex is my limit, though. He damn well better get that crockpot plugged in!

--The Short of It

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Anonymous Blog....

The Short of It and I have many blogs that we are fond of and read frequently. However, we have recently been disappointed by a certain blog that we used to be in love with. I won't mention the blog or include a link because here, we are anonymous and it may reveal our very exciting identities (YEAH RIGHT)!! So anyway, we were initially attracted to this blog because the blogger was very honest. She called things like they were, talked about the hard things, and never seemed to censor herself. Well, something must have happened because for the past few weeks, every post has been about how hard things are and about how she can't talk about it! What?? What the crap is that?? Isn't this the place you go to talk about the hard stuff?? She's not anonymous, so maybe she's afraid of offending someone, but she didn't seem so afraid a couple months ago. I don't get it!! I feel like, either talk about it or don't elude to things you can't talk about. It makes you look like you think you're so important. Or, just get an anonymous blog and chat it up!! Even better, if you don't wanna get an anonymous blog, post an anonymous, bitchy, let it all hang out comment on our anonymous blog....we won't tell!!

**The Long of It**

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


The Long of It asked me to post one of her favorite stories about my first marriage. This actually happened before we got married.

My ex and I were both from the same state, but met out of state while going to college. We got engaged two months after starting to date, and decided that we would go home two months later to get married. A week before the wedding we traveled home to finalize preparations and obtain our marriage license. We had to go to the county seat to apply for our marriage license. It seemed a little strange that the County Clerk's office was inside the town library and in a dirty, poverty stricken area, but we wanted our marriage license so we went where we had to go.

Are you ready? This is the where I was pretty much hit over the head with a giant red flag...a giant red flag that should have warned me that the gods were against this marriage... the red flag that I regret not paying attention to. Standing there in the library signing the papers to finalize our license we overheard someone mentioned that there was a bird in the building. We looked up in an attempt to spot the bird and just at that moment the bird pooped. And of all the places in the library the poop landed right on our marriage license. Serious! Could there be a worse omen for a marriage than to have a giant splotch of poop on your marriage license. We laughed and the clerk typed up a new form, but I should have known then. I should have known then with bird shit soiling the representation of my future marriage that I should run. I should find another relationship that wasn't full of shit!

--The Short of It

Monday, September 15, 2008

Gifted and Talented....

My 8 year old came home from school today with a paper requesting permission to test him for the "Gifted and Talented" program at his school. This was confusing to me cause #1 I can't tell if they sent it home with every kid and #2 to sound like the most horrible parent ever, my kid, really? I didn't consider myself terribly gifted or talented as a kid, but I tested and was placed in the 4th grade into the program. I still don't really know why, but I went and enjoyed it for many years. And don't get me wrong, it's not like I think my kid isn't smart, but I consider him smart in different ways. He's very creative, likes to draw, and he can assemble entire Lego scenarios, but I wouldn't consider him book smart. Last year he went to tutoring after school for writing and the year before for math. To top it off, we just got his progress report not 2 weeks ago and he had a C- in math....I know, I'm horrified too but completely lost for the correct course of action!

I'm totally perplexed by this situation because I have 2 options. Let him be tested with the risk of finding out he's really not smart and needs real help or not let him be tested and be the parent who doesn't think her kid is smart! Both of these options....devastating! My philosophy is to always try to minimize the amount of disappointment and humiliation my kids have to endure. And i know some people would say they need to experience these things cause it makes them stronger....I'm sorry, I'm physically unable to do it. I don't want him to think he's not gifted and talented because he is in so many ways, but not really ways that can be measured by a standardized test! So do I spare him the knowing cause I like the not knowing so much better. I'm not a mean parent, I'm a realistic parent. I understand my children's limitations and maybe it's my fault for not pushing them to exceed those limitations....I just never want them to think they are mediocre cause that's the way I always felt, never the best never the worst just somewhere in the middle. But I don't think that's bad, I mean, I survived....I think?

**The Long of It**

Friday, September 12, 2008

Rooster or Kitten....

Being back in the dating world has definitely made me reconsider all my "options"....stay single, date casually, live in sin, another marriage? This has brought me to an undoubtedly unhealthy fascination with Lesbians. It sounds like a perfect deal. I'm a girl, I understand girls, it seems logical....except one flaw, I like penis tooooo much!

In this midst of this peculiar situation, I became acutely aware of a woman in my office whom I can not determine the sexual orientation. She's in her mid 40's, never been married, no children. She never mentions past relationships, never wears make up, never fancies her hair and is somewhat masculine. She works in a stereotypical male profession and I think she might have a crush on me. But without the word "LESBIAN" written on her forehead, I can't be sure which team she bats for. Is it fair to label someone who may just be neutral without any kind of proof. And what proof would be required? Do I need to see her wearing a plaid flannel? Do I need to see her kissing another woman? Do I need to know that she lives with another woman?

This brings up another interesting point....The Short of It and I have always said if we were both single at the same time we would consider living together with all the kids. It sounds like an ideal two moms. It could just be two moms and best friends living together and helping each other take care of our kids. But that doesn't make us lesbians, although I think some people would wonder....the whole "Kate and Allie" scenario. It seems like eliminating men from our lives, to a certain extent, would relieve some of the heartache....or would it? I know women can be catty and territorial so maybe it just opens a new can of worms! I can't imagine two women PMSing at the same time!!

Either way, I've crossed lesbianism off the list of "options." I'm just not built that way. I love the way a man smells and their undeniable strength. Men have the uncanny power to make you feel you are safe and everything is going to be ok. I will continue to try to find my Prince Charming. Although, I will also continue to be envious of lesbians not having to deal with the shit men throw out at us but I guess as The Short of It said....the grass is always greener on the other side!

**The Long of It**

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Fat is too fun!

Weight Watchers... "Hate" Watchers!

A month and a half ago after eating my way through a summer of step-parenting and my 30th birthday, I stepped on a scale and realized that I had passed the weight I swore I would never get to by 10 whole lbs. I felt fat and miserable. Too sluggish to play in the yard with my kids, and not owning a pair of pants that fit (because I refused to buy anything new).

I promptly joined Weight Watchers. Even saying that, for some reason, makes me feel every one of my 30 years. Isn't Weight Watchers the diet of old ladies? Anyway, I could do it online and never have to sit in a meeting room with the "old ladies." (Geeze, who am I kidding... like I'm some spring chicken still?!)

I joined! And for 5 1/2 weeks I have been completely faithful to the plan. I diligently count my points and track everything... I was ten pounds past my "never" weight... there was no choice in the matter. And it has worked! It has worked wonderfully. I'm now right at my "never" weight and still going down. There is still a long road ahead of me to get to where I want to be.

But this brings me to the point that sometimes it is sooo much better to be fat! Today, I am missing a bowl of ice cream. I'm missing a fattening dinner of pizza. I'm missing mindless snacking. Being fat is fun!

I know, I know, skinny feels better than fat tastes. But sometimes I miss the culinary freedoms of fatness!

--The Short of It

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


My sweet husband can be a bit of a nerd. Yes, he works with computers, yes he is shy... despite these signs on the surface his nerdiness isn't always apparent. For example, most people are not aware that he collects watches. The more specialized the watch, the cooler he thinks it is. He has one that has a calculator (Urkle, watch out!), one that has a remote control on it (giving him hours of entertainment changing television channels in sports bars without anyone knowing the culprit) and he has one that is an "mp4" player and plays videos and music. Typically, he doesn't wear these watches in public and no one is usually aware of the secret collection.

Not enough to convince you? Well, I have more evidence. He will not spend more than $10 for a pair of shoes, $2 for a shirt and $5 for a pair of pants. Somehow, he manages to pull himself together to appear as decent dresser, probably aided by the fact that he is a very handsome man.

But, when I really realized that my husband was a nerd was prior to our marriage. We would send emails to each other throughout the day when we were at work. I was aware of the common chat acronyms which include lol, c-ya, etc. But in our emails he began throwing in some that I wasn't familiar with. "STBY" and "OTP" were his favorites. Needing an explanation on what they meant, I asked. He told me that they are acronyms he has invented for "Sucks to be you" and "on the phone." He went on to tell me that he is quite sure they will eventually catch on. I realized that this is a 30-something year-old's attempt at creating a new slang. An attempt to create something that others will give their approval to and begin using themselves. I've gotten used to his acronyms now, sometimes even forgetting that they are his own creations.

His idiosyncrasies are VERY endearing. I love that he is frugal, and that he has his cute little nerdy ways.

The other day I had a few minutes and found myself feeling curious about chat acronyms. I googled it. I discovered a whole, extensive list of them.

I felt disappointed that the cute acronyms that my husband is so sure he "invented" are also included on the list, cause someone else thought of them too... or maybe it is just proof that they did "catch on." Yeah, that's it! (at least that's what I'll tell him)

--The Short of It

Monday, September 8, 2008

Single Dads....

I understand that for 8 years my X was used to me taking care of everything. It's actually one of the reasons I left him. I was tired of always being responsible for everything. In the apparent fantasy world I live in, I thought if I left him he would be on his own when he had the kids. I was woefully wrong! I am still responsible for EVERYTHING!! I have to call to make sure he has them do their homework. And call him to make sure he puts money under their pillows when their teeth fall out. And call him to make sure he has them brush their teeth. It's ridiculous! Some of these things are so common sense, but he can't seem to remember.

Today, my Kindergartner came home with a progress report that said he didn't turn in his homework. I had specifically made sure it was in his backpack when I dropped him off on Friday and reminded him to turn it in. Apparently, when his dad picked him up on Friday and allllll weekend long, he did not check either of the boys' backpacks for papers or homework or anything. So today, we find out the little one never turned in his homework. And when I ask my X if the homework is still in his backpack, he checks and says, yes indeed, it is still there!! How hard is it to take 30 seconds to go through their backpacks on Friday afternoon to make sure there isn't anything important?

Oh well, gotta go, need to call the X to make sure he feeds the boys dinner!! UGH!!

**The Long of It**

Post-divorce syndrome

Why is it that there doesn't seem to be any information out there about the emotions we feel post divorce? Women's magazines are filled with information about applying eyeliner, keeping our man happy in bed and organizing our laundry room, but there is nothing to prepare us for what we will experience after a divorce.

My kids started soccer last week. This translates to at minimum one hour a week that their dad and I stand side-by-side on the soccer field watching them and making conversation. The first time we went through a soccer season we were right in the throws of this divorce, then we didn't do soccer for a season and now this year we have clearly both moved on to a new phase in our lives. Yet we stand there talking to each other and presenting a united front for our children.

This time spent together brings up some very strange emotions for me. Sometimes the conversations make me miss him. I miss the familiarity, I miss our friendship, I miss our shared history. I don't miss being married to him, but I still grieve the loss of the dream of our happily-ever after. I would never trade my current husband for my ex, but every now and then it makes me question if I really did the right thing by filing for divorce. I didn't have any choice! But it does make me look back and wonder if I could have done anything different. What roll did I play in the divorce and could I have saved the dream?

Logic knows the answer to my hearts questions, but I still think about them from time to time. I think this is normal. I wish these emotions were something that people talked about. I wish I could express them openly without fear of people questioning my love for my current husband. Divorce is so prevalent in our society, but all we talk about is the anger and the hurt. I think that there are many more complex emotions in play when we divorce someone that we share so much with.

--The Short of It

Friday, September 5, 2008


So, I think that The Long of It's Karma backfired on me. I was notified yesterday that after 4 years with my company, my job will be moved across country at the end of the year. They have given me four months notice to regroup and rearrange my life, which I'm grateful for. It is disappointing that I can feel so easily replaced after 4 years of dedicated service.

The only thing I've ever truly longed for in life is security. I'm not sure that security can truly be achieved working in the private sector. My initial gut reaction plan is that I'm going to work toward obtaining my teaching credential. It looks like The Long of It and I might be working on this at the same time. We were both raised by the stable income of teachers. We are both contemplating returning to what we know.

This is scary at 30 years old! It is scary to be starting over, to be working on something we should have done when we were 21.

--The Short of It

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

I have a question....

I work in an industry that has been hit really hard by the slump in the economy and the layoffs are many and frequent, apparently there are 15 more layoffs coming in the next week. This is a very scary time for all of us. I recently decided to move back near my family and leave my current job, but this isn't supposed to happen for a month and a half. My job is partially based on performance and productivity, or so I've been told, and they will cut based on numbers. Purely based on those numbers, I am in the top third in my department so I'm not really in jeopardy to lose my job. But I know that I'm leaving. So, my moral dilemma is, do I keep my job even though I know I'm leaving soon and watch someone else who I care about lose their job? Is it ok to stay even though I know it might mean someone else is out of a job, someone who has a family and children? I know the importance is to always take care of ourselves first and I obviously have my own children to think about, but I can't help feeling that if I was let go and someone else quit a month later, I might be a little upset. Generally, I think I care more about other people then i should and more then they care about me, so I know I should keep my mouth shut and work as long as I can, but am I seriously damaging my Karma??

**The Long of It**

WT day at the pool....

"WT" is an acronym my friends and I affectionately use for "white trash." Somehow this term seems more politically correct to us. I know, it's not politically correct at all to judge people, but it's my only joy in life. Yesterday, I saw the worst case of WT and I just must share! The boys and I went to the pool in the evening so I could try to ware them out. From a distance, the pool seemed full, but this was an inaccurate observation. We went in and put our stuff on a chair and I took a seat while the boys proceeded to get into the pool and this was the scene: six adults playing volleyball with a large yellow ball with a smiley face on it. There were 3 men and 3 women. I'm not sure how they were all related, but I'm positive there was some kind of inbreeding going on. The oldest man was missing his front eight teeth....this did not deter him from smiling incessantly. The 2 other men had mean mullets with matching facial hair. One of the women was slender and not bad looking, until she smiled and was missing just one of her front teeth. Her mother must be so proud! The 2 other women were no less then 250 lbs....and wearing bikinis! Oh yes, bikinis....and string bikinis no less. In addition, each woman had no less then 4 visible tattoos. And then there were the children...i think there were about 6 of them, all under the age of about 6. One boy had a duck-tail...oh yeah, a full fledged duck tail! Who does that to a child in 2008?!?! One little girl, who was about 18 months old was wearing 1 floaty and playing in the one watching her! And then there was a very small baby in a car seat sleeping, and by sleeping I mean baking in the 103 degree heat! At one point, one of the large women in a bikini blurted out an obscenity and the other large woman in a bikini reminded her that there were "other people's kids" at the pool. What about your own juvenile delinquents?

My children were fascinated. Instead of the usual running around, jumping in the water, and swimming races, they were simply watching...sitting and watching. I had to keep reminding them not to stare, but it almost didn't seem fair cause I couldn't stop staring. It was like they couldn't believe what they were seeing. They knew something was amiss, but they couldn't put their finger on just what was off about these people. It was like that car crash thing where you don't want to watch but you can't help it. You have to understand, it's not like I think I'm so sophisticated. I know I have WT qualities and I embrace them, but I had never felt to high class in my whole life. To top it off, when they left, I watched them leave the pool area, get into several beat up cars and leave the complex. They don't even live here!! What is wrong with people?

**The Long of It**

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

The Grass is Greener...

My husband and I spent this last weekend with his sister. My sister-in-law is great! She is 31 years old, never married, no kids. She has a wonderful career as a lawyer. She is thin and social and cute. She lives in a wonderful city, but is still near family. She travels with her job and has enough money to travel for pleasure as well. She is debt free. Basically, she has her act together.

I look at her with a bit of envy. I wonder what would have happened if I had made similar choices. I believe that I was probably very much like her in high school, over-achievers, political and very independent. However, somewhere along the road I made the decision that what I really wanted was love, love of a husband and love of children. I put the ball in motion to achieve the things I was looking for. My SIL worked for her goals.

Looking at her life gives me a case of "the grass is greener on the other side"-itis. Sometimes, I long for her freedom, her ability to take care of her own needs without having to put other's first. She and I often have long conversations about life and love, though. Inevitably, these conversations lead to the realization that even though she seems to have the whole world at her fingertips, what she really longs for is someone to share it with. More than everything she has, I think she wants what I have. It makes me wonder if we can ever truly be happy being alone. I know, I know, some people say it but I think that quite possibly there is something innate in us to make us search for our soul mate. I think that is what will also cause us to endure another person's short comings, endure mistreatment and endure terrible stresses that can be caused by a relationship.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if more women could embrace themselves? When you feel happy and loved and fulfilled all on your own, that is when you attract the healthiest relationship.

--The Short of It

Saturday, August 30, 2008

The Demise of a Marriage, PartII....

I always wanted to be a wife and a mother. Growing up, I never said I wanted to be a doctor or a lawyer, I wanted to be a mommy and a wife. I like taking care of people and I love family. I chose a hard road. I got pregnant when I was 20 years old with a man I had known for a month. My X turned out to be a wonderful person, I got very lucky, but the road was hard.

Bump in the road #1 - he was divorced and had a child from that marriage that he paid a shit-load of child support for but wasn't allowed to see. We moved in together right away and started planning to get married a month after the baby was due. We worked so well together as a team and he got along with my parents fabulously. They treated him like another son.

Bump in the road #2 - when I was 5 months pregnant with our first son, we found out my X had a 3 year old son in his home town. The woman had told him she had an abortion, but never did. She never planned on contacting him, but she was on welfare and they told her she would lose her benefits if they couldn't find the father. There was a year of court papers and paternity tests before we found out for sure it was his son. And then they hit us with $13,000 in back child support. He tried to sign over his parental rights, but the court wouldn't let him because the mother was still on welfare. The DA felt badly for him and offered a deal where we paid 1 lump sum of $6500 and they would forgive the rest of the arrears and we would just have to pay monthly. We ate our humble pie and went to my parents to borrow the money. They agreed, which relieved some of the stress, but here we were paying child support for 2 children we never saw and we now had our own child. I ended up getting a part-time job to offset the child support we paid. We were able to resolve all of the issues, but that wasn't until about 6 years into the marriage.

Bump in the road #3 - my X's career was in the entertainment industry! For those of you who don't know, it is probably the most unstable career on the planet. Over the course of our marriage he lost his job no less then 6 times. Now, none of these times were ever his fault, it was always budge cuts, or a change in the market, or a format flip. It was hard to be mad at him cause it really wasn't his fault, but he did choose to stay in the industry. In between good jobs, he would work odd jobs, but he always worked. The instability still constantly threw our family into crisis mode. It always felt like an uncomfortable roller coaster I couldn't get off.

The last straw - the final career move was out of state. This required leaving the area I had lived in all my life, all my friends, and all my family. But being the good wife and backbone of my family, we packed up and moved. A year later he was let go from that job. I was done! I had just finished my degree and started working myself. I couldn't handle the instability anymore. I had been the only glue holding the family together for 8 years and I was exhausted. My X was raised that if he simply went to work, he was fulfilling his duties. That wasn't enough for me. Everytime the bottom dropped out he would withdraw and I had to pick up the pieces, devise a plan, and execute it behind the scenes. It was exhausting!

When I decided to move forward with the divorce after a year and a half of separation, I met with a lawyer who was a cousin of a friend. I liked her a lot and we talked about what had happened and how my X and I live near each other and get along great. She asked the question I think a lot of people were wondering...."If you guys like each other so much, why are you divorcing?" And the answer is....we make a great team, we make great co-parents, I like him as a person and I think he's a fantastic father, but we don't make good married people. We never really had the passion, the fire that I think is necessary to sustain a long term marriage. I don't know why, we just didn't. And then you add all the pressures and obstacles that we faced and each one chipped away at whatever bond we did have until nothing was left. I know that we will continue to be good friends. Even through the process of the divorce, we don't fight and we always keep the kids first. I know it probably won't always be easy, but I respect him and I just want him to be happy and I believe he feels the same way about me.

**The Long of it**

Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Demise of a Marriage

I married for the first time when I was 20 years old. I had stars in my eyes and even though, our courtship had been rough I believed that love and the strength of a good woman could make any marriage work. To be fair, there were times in our marriage that we were happy and we were friends, but there were other times that he would get upset because my mom called or because I hadn't cleaned the house just as he liked. He would get mad and say ugly things to me. But out of naivety, I thought it would get better. After the birth of our son, we went for counseling. A few sessions and some promises from ex and the councilor told us there was nothing more he could do and that we would be fine. We weren't fine! We continued to argue and the verbal abuse continued. Because we were good friends and because we had some sense of happiness, we decided to have our second child.

Our daughter was born in to a happy and loving home. However, something changed after her birth. Suddenly, the ex became very distant. He no longer wanted to spend time with me or our children. He was very unhappy and was rarely home. His job was in the entertainment field and there were always "work" related events for him to attend in clubs and bars until very early morning hours. He stopped coming home some nights. I began finding strange messages on his phone and catching him in lies. I suspected that he was having an affair, but he denied it. He was drinking heavily and admitted to having done drugs a few times. He also told me that I had never made him happy and that he wasn't sure if he had ever loved me. I tried not to let it effect me and I remained devoted to him.

Finally, when our daughter was a year and a half old ex was fired from a job for sexual harassment and having a relationship with a female coworker. He finally admitted to me that this was his second affair and the the first one had gone on for over a year.

After all of this, my first reaction was to try to work through the problems again and save the marriage, then I realized that there was no marriage to save. I no longer trusted him, believed him or even liked him. He wasn't the same person I had married. I filed for divorce three weeks later.

--The Short of It

4 Hour Guilt Trip....

I've been separated for a year and a half but only started the divorce 2 months ago. In my state, divorcing parents are required to take a parenting class to obtain a divorce. A four hour, mind numbing, long ass class full of bitter men and women hating the world. I swear you could taste the bad vibe in the air. It was awkward for me because I have had a very amicable separation and divorce. My X and I live very close to each other, talk daily, and share the kids 50/50. A long story for another post.

After 12 hours to reflect, here are my observations:

*There's not much this man told me that I hadn't read a hundred times in books and articles.

*My kid is a lot more angry then I thought he was.....get therapy, ASAP.

*There are a lot of angry people in the world....and they frequently marry each other.

*If, while taking notes, you write "divorse" you don't deserve to get one!

*I'm a pretty sly text messager.

*I really don't want to listen to an 80-year-old man talk about us being "sexual beings."

*I have probably irrevocably damaged my children for life and now they have a 75% chance of getting divorced themselves.

*I am not allowed to get into another relationship for 2-3 years or it will go horribly wrong.

*If I do ever get married again there's a 60% chance I'll get divorced again....that'll make the 2-3 year wait for another relationship REAL EASY!!

Feel free to take any of my pearls of wisdom and use them in your own life! By the way, I paid $40 for this wisdom!!

**The Long of it**

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Act your age

I work with a lady who is in her late 40's. Julie has 2 daughters who are in their early twenties, and she has a very close single-parent relationship with them. But, Julie is OLD. I don't mean by way of age, but at some point Julie has resigned herself to being grandmotherly. She wears long dresses, with no shape, that look like they are from the early 90's. Visiting Julie's house is like visiting a grandma, lots of doilies, she collects bells and has various nik-naks everywhere. Everything about Julie is old!

On the other-hand, my ex-mother-in-law, whom I adore, is in her 50's and is far younger and hipper than I ever dreamed of being. Jane wears the newest clothing styles, she decorates her house in a trendy manner and she is tuned in with technology, and entertainment news. Everything about Jane is young!

What is the difference? Why do some women chose to age themselves prematurely? Honestly, watching Julie makes me worry about falling in to a rut. I don't want to lose touch with everything modern. I worry that it is slowly happening though. Already, I prefer music that is just a little bit old instead of the latest stuff. Already, I refuse to buy the latest fashions, rationalizing that they won't stick around and it isn't the frugal choice. I have never seen an episode of Hanna Montana! Oh no, I even have doilies in my house!

I've always planned to age the way Jane has, planned to stay connected with my kid's generation. Maybe the effort is futile, I wasn't even the most hip kid when I was a teenager myself. While, I want to look appropriate and not end up being a 50 year old who looks like I'm trying to be 20, I also don't want to be a 50 year old who is trying to be 70.

Are these choices we make or is it something that is intrinsic in our personality? How do we strike the balance? How do we age gracefully?

--The Short of It

Monday, August 25, 2008

How did I get here....

As a child, you are always told you have your whole life in front of you. You can be whatever you want to be and do whatever you want to do. You have so many things to look forward to. As you enter adolescences, you realize the things you like to do and the things you are good at. This begins to narrow the field of opportunities. Young adulthood is full of figuring out exactly who you are as you start to make choices that will effect the rest of your life, except, for most of us, we never realize how much it will. As I approach the big 3-0 in a couple months, the point at which I consider myself a full fledged adult, I can't help but feel like "How did I get here?"

How did I get to be a single mom of 2, working at a job I don't particularly like, not ready to date, not ready to be alone, and generally completely lost. I can't even fathom some of the choices I made to get to this point, but they sure sounded like good ideas at the time. I've always just tried the best I could with what I had, but somehow that doesn't seem good enough anymore. I'm gonna need to get some psychic ability to get through the next 30 years or I'm toast.

Don't get me wrong, I like who I am and I understand that I wouldn't be that person if I had not been through everything I have. But I always wonder what would have happened if I had taken a slightly different path at crucial points in my life. Should I have chosen to raise my son alone when I found out I was pregnant out of wedlock at the age of 20? Should I have said no to the moving out of state for an unstable job? Should I have persevered in the career I really wanted? Should I now, as I stand at a crossroads in my life, chose to return to the place where it all started and try to start over?

I've tried to hone my psychic ability, but I don't think it's working, so I guess I'm going to have to continue to do the best I can with what I know. Starting over is never easy, but it does allow you to change your path and choose something different. I'm choosing something different, something that can be better for me and better for my boys. I'm choosing to take them home, where people love and care for them. It's not the easy choice, but most hard things are worth the work. As long as I continue to keep the future in view and forgive myself for past mistakes, I can't go wrong.

**The Long of it**


I love my children. Please don't misinterpret what I am about to say, please don't turn me into CPS for not loving them. I do love them, more than I ever imagined possible, but there are days when I really detest motherhood.

It all started when I was pregnant. I HATED being pregnant. Oh, sure there were the moments when I realized that it was the one time in my life that it was ok to be fat, and I did enjoy some of the attention that you get when you are cute and pregnant (yes, I did just call myself cute). But I hated being sick, I hated being kept awake by kicking and I hated sharing my body. My first pregnancy was riddled with guilt about not being pregnant and glowing. I felt sad that I wasn't loving the experience the way other women do.

When the babies were born I quickly realized that I also wasn't fond of breastfeeding. It didn't particularly make me feel any closer to them or bonded with them. I didn't feel so wonderful because they were dependant on me. I continued to breastfeed because that was the best choice for their health, but I longed for the day when I would regain some autonomy.

Right about now, you are probably thinking that you are reading the words of a woman who shouldn't have had kids and who never should have made the choice twice. It may sound that way, but my kids do fill me with joy and overwhelming emotion. Their welfare is my number one priority and has always come before my needs.

Now, my kids are 4 and 6 years old. We have been through many adjustments together. Since, my divorce I have often felt like it is "me and my kids against the world." We cling to each other. But there are days still that I feel like I did when I was pregnant and breastfeeding. There are days when I want to throw my hands in the air and say "I give up,This is too hard." When I had children, I thought I would be married to their dad forever. I never thought that my dream of a perfect family would be ripped out from beneath me. That I would be the ONLY person in this world who so clearly has their best interests in mind every moment of the day. Sometimes, I long for my autonomy back, sometimes I dream about not having them so dependant on me.

My new husband is wonderful with my kids. They absolutely adore him and they see him as a father figure, and their dad is still very involved in their lives. I'm not all alone, like some women are. But there is no one else to diffuse the situation when they get mad and say "I hate you!" Last week my six year old got really mad for the first time, he told me he hated me and then proceeded to tell me how much better his dad is and that he just wants to live with his dad. It stung. It shook me, no matter how much logic is telling me that he was just testing the water. It still made me feel that all of my hard work, sacrifice and love is being wasted.

I look at other mom's who just radiate motherhood. Who are patient and soft and loving. Moms who play with their kids and seem to enjoy every aspect of motherhood. I look at them and I feel inadequate. I wonder why my experience is so filled with struggles and battles of will. I wish that I was a lover of all things motherhood. I wish I glowed when I was pregnant, that I felt so wonderful when breastfeeding and that I truely could "enjoy" all of the stages as they mature. Many days, I feel like I'm just putting one foot in front of the other, taking motherhood one step at a time and waiting for the rest at the end. I'm tired and I yell too much.

Just when I think I can't take another moment of this challenging job they do something so edearing, so tender that they melt my heart. They melt my heart just like their sweet baby sounds and their newborn smell melted my heart when I was hating breastfeeding. My heart melts and I am girded up to shoulder the next challenge of motherhood, one foot in front of the other.

--The Short of It

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Three weeks free....

I wasn't sure that I wanted to blog about this because it is a sensitive situation and I don't want to sound harsh or heartless, but I think it might be a situation other people have dealt with and I was curious to explore the issue. The Short of it played matchmaker a few months ago. She gave my email address to a guy she worked with. He seemed perfect on paper! He has a great job, and beyond that, a great career. He is in his late thirties, never been married, with no kids. She always felt he was very polite and really seemed to have his life together. We exchanged emails for a few weeks and I really liked everything he had to say. He seemed to have the right answers without even meaning to. He was very open and honest and so was I....I was probably too honest, I tend to have that problem. After a few weeks we started talking on the phone. The conversations were often, long, and in depth. I really started to like him. At this point, there were a couple red flags. First, he seemed to drink a little more then I did and he wasn't very nice when he drank. But, I'm no prude and excused the unkindness because of the alcohol. Second, he had a "crazy ex-girlfriend"....this always disturbs me because there are 2 sides to every story.

After about a month of talking on the phone, I made the drive (7 hours mind you) to stay at The Short of it's house and spend some time with Mr. X. We talked on the phone during my long drive, but this did not go well. He had been drinking and was kinda being mean! He said I was "fussy and uptight" and some other things that I have blocked out because I was so angry. No one had ever talked to me that way and I wasn't having any part of it. When I got to The Short of it's house, I called him and left a message saying this wasn't going to work and I didn't want to see him. A few hours later, after I was asleep, he called and text several times saying how sorry he was and that he didn't mean to offend me. The next day, The Short of it's husband talked to him and he seemed really remorseful so I decided to talk to him. It was really hard and I really felt like I should be out on this guy, but he looked so good on paper and he was so willing to do anything to make it better. So, after a long talk with The Short of it we decided that the best thing was for Mr. X to come to dinner at her house. He quickly agreed and we had a nice evening together and even went for a drive after dinner. I was back in.....and more then ever I really liked this guy.

I went home and we continued to talk on the phone. It was difficult because I was so far away and some things about him irritated me, but he still looked so good on paper that I pushed through all of that. Also, at this point, there were more red flags. I had shared with him some issues I had with post-partum depression and my Grandmother being Bipolar. This is when he informed me he had been diagnosed Bipolar. I know what you might be screaming!! But it's not that easy. I didn't see it, he seemed so normal. And there are differing degrees of mental illness and who was I to judge, I had been through post-partum depression, TWICE! So, I pushed on.

He decided to fly out to visit me and we went to stay at a nice resort. I think this was the beginning of the end. First, he didn't like that I could be there and we could just be quiet. He wanted us to always be talking. He also didn't sleep at night. He would get up at 3am and be up for the day. He drank A LOT.....from the time he got there to the time he left, it was constant. At one point, someone knocked at the door and he flipped out about people "bugging us," complete with 4 letter words and stomping around. Later, we went to walk around the mall and he had a full on panic attack about being around a lot of people. I felt bad for him, but something was clearly wrong.

After his departure, paranoia and crazy speculation ensued. If I did not answer my phone or call him back right away he thought I was dead, got a DUI, or was having sex with another guy! What?!?! Huh?!?! It didn't make sense. The next week he went to the doctor and was re-diagnosed Bipolar and put on meds. I was happy that he was getting help, but I felt stuck. I didn't want to be mean or kick him while he was down, but I was for sure out. I tried to remain friendly, but a barrage of texts and phone calls at 2am a few weeks later pushed me over the edge!

Here was my dilemma...I was out because he is Bipolar. Is that bad, mean, wrong?? He knew the horrible, life scarring issues I had with my Grandmother being Bipolar.....could he really expect me to put myself, not to mention my children, in that type of situation? Well, I know he did....but would anyone else? I had children to think about and this was no minor case of Bipolar. Why would I choose that life? But I felt like I was discriminating against someone with a disability! That's not nice or politically correct. If he had a brain tumor, would that make him undateable? He's sick, he has an it ok to choose not to get on the crazy train?? It's been 3 weeks now with no contact....a part of me is immensely relieved, but another part of me has so many questions.

**The Long of it**

P.S. I knew I did the right thing when I found out last week that his doctor made him take a month off of work and he has stage 2 liver damage!!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Whining in public...

We recently received a comment on our blog asking if we started this blog "just to whine in public." Being the reasonable, thoughtful people we are, The Short of it and I took a step back to contemplate this comment. First of all, if you read our profile, you can see that this is the exact reason why we started this blog. We needed an outlet to vent our feelings and frustrations, beyond our daily phone calls to each other. We wanted a place to talk about the things that happen in our lives. Writing can be very cathartic and therapeutic and allows us to release some steam. Most of the things we blog about aren't things we can vent to our husbands, children, co-workers, or even our friends. We're not allowed to whine to our children how bad it sucks to be a step parent or how disheartening it is to be in the dating world. We can't point out to our friends and family members the things that drive us crazy about them. It's not polite and it's not good manners. Instead, we write about them in this anonymous blog!:)

Secondly, we have found a lot of solace in reading other's blogs. We can see that we are not alone in our struggles and we actually take stock in other people's experiences and advice. We, in turn, hope that maybe people who read our blog will know they are not alone. We struggle with the same things every human being does and there is some kind of hope in knowing that sometimes, our lives aren't so bad. In addition, being anonymous allows us to talk about things that may be taboo in a nice, family blog....the things people won't talk about around the dinner table. This is the place where we can call a spade a spade and we believe that most people appreciate the honesty.

So, yes we may whine and we admit it. But we're allowed to because this is the only place on the entire planet where it is acceptable. We will not apologize for the things we blog about and if this offends your delicate sensibilities then I am sure there is another fluffy, life is great blog out there for you to read.

**The Long of it**

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Refined Tastes

My husband and I got married in Vegas. It was very, very small and very perfect. Actually, nothing about the day went perfectly smooth, but that didn't bother us. My youngest cried throughout our ceremony, not a tearful emotional cry, but a two year old tantrum cry. My step-daughter was tired and mad at the world (in her six year old way). But none of these things bothered us in the least. We look back on it as perfect. After the ceremony our immediate family and some of my closest friends were asked to join us for a no-host dinner at a Vegas buffet.

When I mentioned the plans to my mom she became worried about her boyfriend L. She feared that this man who is used to fine dining and no less than four star hotels might be repulsed by the dining fare at a Vegas buffet. I told her I was sorry if this was going to cause a problem, but this would be most comfortable choice for the majority of guests in attendance. She said that they would figure it out. The day of the wedding arrived and another word about L's discomfort was never mentioned.

We went to the buffet and L looked a little confused. My mom rushed around trying to make him comfortable and searching the buffet (while the rest of us were eating like happy plump little pigs) for anything that might suit L.

Finally, L was able to find choices that were pleasing to his upper-class taste buds. At the end of the long table sat L, with a plate of sauerkraut, refried beans, beets and tomato slices. He enjoyed all of this with a glass of red wine. Yes, L definitely has refined tastes...

--The Short of It

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The second time around

Sometimes I wonder if this second time around relationship thing is even worth it. My husband and I married shortly after the ends of our first marriage. We both have fairly young children. We love each other very much... but is love enough.

Is love enough to overcome the trials of step-parenting, demands made by ex spouses and the division of loyalty? This whole thing has me tired! I thought it was tough trying to juggle a spouse and demanding parents in my first marriage, but now the second time around there are so many more forces working on us. There are so many different parties with their hands in our affairs.

My husbands ex-wife wants more child support. She wants more child support because she has decided that she wants to be a stay at home mom, therefore my husband needs to pay more. She is able bodied, young, capable of working. Even relocated the kids to another state under the guise of getting a better job. Then two years later, changed her mind and has decided she doesn't want to work anymore. So, now with her non-existent income and less visitation for my husband because of the increased distance, it looks like the courts will award her more child support.

In a discussion about this today, my husband informed me that this will cause us a financial strain because I insisted on buying a house a year and a half ago. And that is just the down side to owning. Excuse me! Somehow our financial strain is going to be my fault. Let me give just a little more background info... I work full time, I bring home more than half of our family's income. With my income alone I could comfortably afford 1/2 of our mortgage, my car payment and all of the expenses for my own children. We also bought a house a year and a half ago because our neighbor in our rental was an ex-con that was dangerous and any other rentals that we looked at would cost as much as buying. Yet somehow, even with those factors at play our financial hardships will be MY FAULT?!?!

Now mind you, I do not in any way blame my husband for this. I blame a greedy ex. His comments came to the surface when I made a comment about it not being fair that I will have to work more overtime when child support goes up so that we can afford the difference. It would do no good for him to earn any more money, because the more he earns, the more she will want to take.

It seems that no matter what, I am the bad guy here. I didn't take his kids away. I'm not demanding half his income. Yet somehow I'm to blame here.

My husband made many choices long before I came in to the picture. Decisions that put balls in motion to create our current situation. I came along late in the game and just said, "Hey, I love you and I'd like us to have a nice life together!" And now I realize that saying that makes me demanding in his eyes and has caused all of our future problems.

Am I just destined to be the evil step-mother and a pushy and demanding wife?

Other step-mothers/second wives out there... are these problems normal? How do you overcome issues like this? How do I stand up for myself and say that I will not allow myself to be the whipping post everytime something goes wrong?

--The Short of It

Monday, August 18, 2008

Working mom....

I don't normally get bent out of shape about what other people say in this crazy blogging world. I understand that everyone has their own opinion and they have a right to express themselves. But today, I read a blog about being a "working mom" that I just can't keep quiet about! The blog was from a mom of a six month old baby, who works at a church. Apparently, she's allowed to take her child to work with her occasionally and when she does not, the child stays with family members. She loves her job but misses nursing her baby and making dinner for her husband. I'm sorry, I understand we women gotta stick together and all, but I call BULL SHIT!!

I am a single, working mom. I work 40+ hours a week, at a job I don't particularly like so that I can keep a roof over our head and food on the table. My children go to public school and after school day care with people who's first names I can scarcely remember. I am single, with no social life to speak of. And I flat out don't eat half the time! I have no family here and most of my friends are flakes. I'm constantly exhausted, defeated, and depressed because I feel like a bad parent and a general failure at life and I'm going to be alone forever! I spend everyday just doing the best I can.

I just feel like you can't call yourself a "working mom" if what you are is a glorified volunteer, who brings your child to work, who has a husband and a support system, who whines about not being able to make homemade pizza! I understand it's hard to leave your child with anyone, but before you complain about your situation, you should consider that other people have a hard, if not harder time and would kill to have what you have. I am not exempt from this. I look at women who work 2 jobs they absolutely hate, who's children's fathers are not even around, who's family is not supportive at all and I know that I have it easier then them. And that is why I never would have even considered posting this blog if it hadn't been for the woman who complained about not being able to make her husband lunch or have a garden!

Come on women! Let's consider that there is a world outside of your cushy suburban lives and maybe you don't have it so bad. Maybe there are women who struggle longer and harder then you and we should not make them feel like less of a person, less of a mother, and less of a successful human being then you!

**The Long of it**

Friday, August 15, 2008

Missing the Good Times

I read a post on Jezebel yesterday. She referenced a very interesting article on msnbc titled, When the train never leaves the station. This kind of got me thinking about the importance of sex in a relationship/marriage. How often is often enough, how often is too often and what are good "excuses" for not having sex.

When I was in college I heard it said that if you put an M&M in a jar every time you have sex the first year of your marriage/relationship and then take an M&M out ever time you do the deed for the subsequent years, you will never empty your jar. This translates to, enjoy it the first year, because it's goin' away baby! If that is the case, it makes sense that the divorce rate is so high, maybe we are all desiring a chance to start a relationship and enjoy the part where you are filling the jar.

How can a marriage survive without sex? I have heard about people who don't have sex on their wedding night, which seems strange enough, but people who go years... I just can't comprehend that. Is it just me or is it a necessary part of feeling loved, desired and connected? Honestly, I kind of enjoy the little bit of control that sex gives me in a relationship. I don't really know if I would want to be in a relationship if it weren't for sex. Yeah, yeah, companionship is great and all that, but if that is all I wanted I'd just have a roommate. Or even better, if I was only looking for companionship, I'd just live with The Long of It. But no, I enjoy good sex, good sex with a man that is. And obviously, I'm not in to the random partner thing. In fact T was the only man I've ever slept with that I wasn't married to.

When thinking about this concept of sexless marriages that is so foreign to me, I questioned two things. First, how can they survive and second, what causes this. Is it possible that there are people who just don't need sex? I can understand having some hang ups about feeling comfortable. But I have to wonder if you have these hang ups in the relationship then are you maybe in the wrong relationship? I believe a good amount of sex is 2 to 3 times per week. I think that is realistic. I think everyone has different needs, but I want to feel close to my husband a few times a week. And really, I want the fun. These people in marriages without sex are honestly missing out on the fun stuff. Perhaps some of it comes from a profound laziness. I know that when I go periods without sex with my husband it is really just because I'm feeling tired and lazy, then when we get back at it I regret the lazy period.

From someone who thinks that sex is so much fun, my advice if you aren't getting any... go get some help... go get laid!

-The Short of It

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Lies in Marriage

How much honesty is REALLY necessary in a marriage? I have been married for a couple of years now and I still think about the fact that I wasn't completely honest with my husband during our courtship. Actually, there was just one lie that I told him that I haven't completely fessed up to, or fessed up to at all.

Let me explain:
When my first marriage ended, I was a little devastated. My first husband had been extremely unfaithful and my confidence was very shaken. Almost immediately, there were a couple of men that I worked with that began flirting with me. It felt great. The first guy (who was very good looking) really only amounted to a couple of make-out sessions and nothing more. The second guy (who was definitely no Fabio) was someone that I worked very closely with. As a matter of fact he was a member of my department. T had just recently been divorced. He was 31, and slightly balding with a tummy pooch, but he was a really good, kind person. We started talking. He invited me over for drinks and I got drunk on Tequila, much to his amusement. That night he cleaned up my puke and put me to bed in his bed while he slept on the floor. Definitely a gentlemen. One thing led to another, probably mostly my initiative and we started sleeping together. I believe he fell in love with me, but for me it was just a self-esteem boost. T started getting a little too attached and before I knew it I was feeling smothered. I ended the relationship.

A short time after my relationship with T, two things happened. First, I met my husband and almost instantly knew that the relationship with him was EXACTLY what I was looking for. Second, T was promoted at work and became my boss. I didn't tell T about my new love for quite a while, didn't even tell him we were getting married until the Friday before the wedding. When I did finally tell him, he was very supportive and expressed a strong desire for my happiness.

But the real issue comes with my husband. He is not a jealous man by any means. He knew early on that I had a casual relationship with T, and was only mildly bothered by it. Of course, I did lie though. When we were first dating my husband asked me if I had slept with T. I Lied! I told him I hadn't. He asked me if that was a lie and I lied again. He took me at my word and the matter dropped there. I went on to work under the management of T for two years and there was never an issue, no one was uncomfortable.

Over two years later, I still think about that one lie I told during our courtship. I wonder if this is a terrible flaw that I have created in our relationship. Obviously, no good would come of fessing up now. I know that my husband had partners that we haven't discussed, there is no need to. But I don't believe he has flat out lied about any of them. T did happen well before I knew my husband, does he need to know my entire past before him? Does this one lie mean that our relationship is built on an unstable foundation?

-The Short of It

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Single White Female

I really thought that at 30 years old I would know a lot about a lot of things. Unfortunately, one of those things is not dating! I was married young and am now divorced with 2 kids and contemplating entering the dating world again. Mind you, I've been separated for almost 2 years so it's not as if I just left my husband yesterday. And still, dating terrifies me! I dated before I married, if you can call a string of one night stands dating, and I thought I learned a lot about what to do and what not to do and what to look out for. Apparently, I was dead wrong!

Ten years later, the world of the single woman has completely changed. It used to be that you went to a bar, a random bookstore, a coffee shop ran into an interesting man and BOOM!! dating began. That doesn't seem to be the case anymore. I've been to bars, book stores, and coffee shops....there are no men there! At least not any single, half way attractive, semi-employed, possibly interesting men. There are couples at these places. Kissing, hugging, snuggling couples....blissfully happy and off the market! I've been fixed up one disaster! So, where does a single woman go to meet a man....

This past weekend I was at my cousins wedding. I'm thinking, I've heard the old wives tails about people meeting at weddings....not so much! Everyone was with someone and by the way, I had a date, I actually had 2 dates.....yeah, they were both shorter then 5 feet and they call me "mom." It seems as if everything is geared toward couples! I swear I was the only singleton was depressing!

This realization brought me to a very interesting conversation with my other cousin's new bride (insert gaging motion!). They met on one of those dating websites. This got me I gonna have to resort to internet dating just to meet a halfway normal guy? I'm not sure I'm up to that! How does some computer equation quantify a connection? How do I look at a picture and a profile and decide this is someone I wanna spend time with?

Online dating....Yes? No? Thoughts...

**The Long of it**

Corporate America Sucks

I work for a very, very large corporation. I swear they own a piece of everything and you see their name and commercials everywhere. Anyway, when I first started working here there were a few perks. There was the free gym membership, the free feminine hygiene products in the bathroom and the free coffee, tea, mocha, hot chocolate machine in the breakroom. Yeah, these aren't huge, but they were something. They were more than I had at other places that I worked.
Slowly, over the last four years, perks have disappeared. The gym membership was replaced by a graded "track" out in the middle of the fields. The drink machine was replaced by just a coffee pot in the kitchen and even the feminine hygiene products are now the cheap 1950's style ones. Basically, all of the good stuff is gone in 4 short years time. My little corner of corporate America stinks!

Then the other day someone sent me pictures of the work environment at Google. And now I'm completely preoccupied with jealousy!

- The Short of It

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Dear "The Short of it,"

I know that things are super sucky right now and just when you think things are looking up the bottom drops out again and you're back to square one. And you know me, I'm not normally "the glass is half full" type of person, but you've been through so much worse. From the depths of complete despair, alone and estranged from the people who loved were able to fight your way back and regain your strength and power. You single handedly picked yourself up and put yourself back together. You learned that you were so much better then the way people treat you and that you have so much to offer that you wouldn't let evil people hold you down any longer. To forgive and to be forgiven when you were wronged.

I have always envied your strength. Your ability to be completely crushed and to get back up again and be determined to love again. And also forgiving yourself when you didn't feel like you were doing enough and being able to let the guilt melt away and see yourself for who you truly are. And all the time, doing it with so much dignity and always holding your head high. I think of you when I can't get out of bed in the morning and I think I just don't want to go on anymore because you are an inspiration to me. To move on, to love again, to strive for the family I've always wanted, to expect more and never settle for less.

I love you. I wish we had been born sisters, except then I don't think I would appreciate you the way I do. And I wouldn't change anything we have been through together cause it's made us smarter, stronger, grounded, and closer. It's bound to get harder, but nothing can be as bad as that one time we got caught at Marie Calendars!:)

Love Always,
**The Long of it**

Hmmm, Hmmm

My dad is 13 years older than my mom. They always said that it worked for them. That is until 3 years ago when they divorced, after almost 30 years of marriage. My mom cited irreconcilable differences. She told me they were just too different and that she didn't want to spend her retirement only being a nurse to an old man. Granted, nursing wasn't her main "excuse," but it was up there on her list. After the divorce she started dating. She dated a couple of men close to her own age and a couple of older men. You probably could have seen the shock on my face when one day she told me that she had fallen in love again. L was apparently everything she had ever looked for in a man, the yin to her yang, if you will. He is wealthy and educated. Supposedly, everything that my dad is not.

I don't think I was prepared for what I would meet the day I met L. He is 5 years older than my dad and deaf. He gets very confused. I have nothing against the man, but when my mom asked if I liked him it was nearly impossible to answer. How can I know if I like a man that is so hard of hearing I can barely carry on a conversation with him? He wears hearing aids, but I think they must not help. He also has one very annoying habit. About every two minutes he makes an audible "hmmm" noise. Just repeating the noise quietly to himself. Someone please SMACK me if I do that when I get old! I know I will smack my husband if he does it! Honestly, doesn't my mom hear this? Doesn't it drive her crazy? Is she blinded to these things because he is wealthy? Doesn't she see that she traded her "old" set of problems for an even "older" set?

I hate to believe it, but I think that maybe the money and the lifestyle he can provide makes this not so annoying to her. Or maybe after living with him for a year now, she no longer hears it. Maybe it is like people who live by train tracks, and eventually cease to hear the passing trains. Oh God, this man is a train wreck!

This is just an introduction to L, believe me, I have many more stories to share about this interesting man.

-The Short of it

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

You might be an alcoholic if....

*You finish someone else's drink at 8am that has been sitting for 12 hours just because it's the only alcohol you can get your hands on

*You get up in the middle of the night to have a beer, just to calm your nerves

*You have to stop on the way home from work to buy a 6 pack because you have had a bad day

*You polish off a bottle of wine all alone, in one evening

*You are a hasher and you take your 6 month old baby along with you

*You go to the doctor for a completely unrelated issue and they tell you that you have stage 2 liver damage

*You are told by the same doctor that you need to quit drinking to be able to take the amount of meds that are necessary to make you normal

*You add any type of alcohol to a beverage that should NOT contain, sunny delight, kool aid, red bull

*You sometimes carry alcohol in a water bottle

*You only exercise the next day so that you can sweat the alcohol out

We'll be adding to this list as more ridiculous situations arise.....

Monday, August 4, 2008

To Whom it May Concern....

Dear Checker at the grocery store by my house,

I was gonna start with an apology, but I don't think you deserve one. Yes, I was talking on my cell phone while in the check out lane and I'm not sorry about it. I have a very busy life and many things must me multi tasked!! I understand this is irritating for you, but we really don't need to have any interaction. It's not as if you have ever been overwhelmingly concerned about customer service before. I know this cause I see you often. You may not remember me, but I remember you....and not fondly.

I don't need your help while putting my groceries on the counter. And you don't need my help to scan said items. I have waited for the total and swiped my card. I have put in my pin number and said I don't want cash back. You have given me my receipt and I have said "Thank You". Enough said. So next time don't roll your eyes at the bagger boy and don't tap your fingers on the counter cause I'm not wasting your time. Just check my groceries, put them in a bag, and I'd like it with a smile....even if I am on the phone ignoring you.

So, have a good day you unhappy checker and the next time you're caught "multitasking", I hope you'll remember me.....and I hope you know, every single solitary time I am in that store, and I see you checking, I will intentionally get on my phone and get in your line!

Yours Truly,
**The Long of it**

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Friends with benefits??

Being thrust back into the dating world after 7 years of marriage is like being a piece of bread dropped in a duck pond.....sick or swim, eat or be eaten!! I married young and hadn't dated too much before I took the plunge, so I'm at even more of a disadvantage then the average 30-something divorcee with 2 kids. Don't get me wrong, I consider myself hip and all.....I know what "friends with benefits" are, but it's one thing to know what it is and another to try to execute it.

Obviously, being straight out of a marriage, I'm not looking to get into some kind of lock-it-down, love-u-forever arrangement. Naturally, the "friends with benefits" appealed to me. So, i looked around, kept my eyes open for a potential candidate. This, in itself, was very difficult. How do you pick....who qualifies? And you'd be surprised how many guys aren't really down for this type of "relationship". Something about a guy turning down free sex with no strings attached seemed completely foreign to me.

So, finally a candidate. We'll call him "D". He was a co-worker, a little younger, totally hot.....and definitely a player!! For sure, he would be down. We talked at work.....and out of work, but never seemed to end up at the same place at the same time. We were friends and got along good. This went on for months. Then finally we ended up at the same party one night. This was it....I was gonna get this "friends with benefits" off the proverbial ground! And we did, drunk of course, but completely his initiation. (I know you'd like the nitty-gritty details, but it's not gonna happen.) D was very sweet and kind and stayed the night and we cuddled in the morning. Part of me expected for him to disappear completely, cause that's what guys do after a drunken hook up....they panic and disappear. But D didn't. We continued to talk on the phone and at work and see each other occasionally.

It took me a while to figure out that we weren't exactly "friends with benefits". We were friends....who hung out and talked a lot....but the benefits were lacking. I began to become self conscious. Oh God, what had I done that was so horrifying that the "benefits" were now off the table? He had seemed to enjoy our time and I didn't think I was that fact, I had references....i was good, damn it!! So, what had happened??

It took me some time of getting to know him to figure it out, but I think I finally put my finger on it. Guys are scared!! They're scared of women. D had a string of drunken hook ups that he remained friends with but without the extras. His theory was that if he let these women get too close to him he would be held to some type of relationship he didn't want. And no amount of convincing from me would sway him that I wouldn't want to marry him in 3 months. I know some girls are like that, but I'm not....I swear! Yes, you're cute and yes, you're nice but you are not marriage material!

We're still friends and talk often and the "benefits" are definitely off the table. I think I'm relieved about that. If he's gonna freak out about something that isn't gonna happen and flatter himself that I would actually want something more, then I don't want the drama. I think I'm giving up on "friends with benefits". I don't think I actually know someone where that ended good. Oh well, nothing gained nothing lost.

**The Long of it**

Saturday, August 2, 2008

A Croc of Crap

I hate Crocs! Who decided that these are real shoes?
Let me start with a couple of disclaimers... First, if you are a nurse, by all means I understand you wearing Crocs. Second, if you use them for gardening or walking along river bottoms, I think Crocs may be a fine choice. However, for all of the rest of the population wearing these horrendous shoes I have to ask, What in Heaven's Name are you thinking?
These shoes are ugly. They are not a fashion statement. I saw a well intentioned woman wearing them in church, this is not appropriate, these do not qualify as Sunday Best. These shoes are slovenly and they look like colorful tires, not footwear.
I confess, in the early nineties I made my mistakes. As a Jr. High student I wore socks and Birkenstocks as well as socks and Tevas. Oh, the horror of it. But, for the love of Pete! I learned my lesson. I repented of my ways. I grew up and bought some appropriate foot fashions. These ugly things have creeped in to society everywhere. Children, Grandmothers and last week I saw a man in my office wearing them.
Please America, I beg you! Please, keep these contraptions at your back door to wear in the garden. Keep them where they belong!
--The Short of it

Thursday, July 31, 2008

True Love

I have a take on all this talk about love...

I believe that as a society we have a confused interpretation of what love is. I have been in love twice in my life. One love good, one love bad. However, neither one has been a swooning, make my heart melt, butterflies in my stomach, head-swooning at his touch kind of love.

Love is a rational emotion. Screw all those people who say love is blind, love is irrational or the heart does what the heart wants. That's bull crap! When you are picking out who to fall in love with and I do believe that it is picking... you should be making a conscious choice. You should be asking yourself several questions, including:

1. Will he stand by me through thick and thin?

2. Does he think I am the best thing that ever happened to him? (but in a realistic way, he has to still be aware of your faults)

3. Is the sex good? Will I be happy only having sex with this man for the rest of my life.

4. Will a life with him be the life I want? (and I say this in regards to standard of living)

5. Does he like me for me and do I like him for him?

No matter how much you "like" someone, he is going to bug the shit out of you sometimes and the reality is that you are going to bug the shit out of him sometimes. How will those moments be handled?

Yes, I believe true love exists. I truly love my husband. I love that he is kind and gentle, doesn't have a mean or selfish bone in his body. I love that I didn't settle for something, that I married the best person I have ever known. There have been times where I've gotten bored with our relationship, I wouldn't call us passionate, but we are steady and secure. He is a "soft," "safe" place for me to land when the rest of the world beats me up. And I believe THAT is true love.

Love is not the stuff movies are made of, it is not the stuff in love songs. I'm not a romantic person, I don't believe all the romantic hooey! Love in the real world isn't swoony, instead it is work. Love is finding someone you like, someone you respect, who feels the same way about you. Love is making a conscious decision that having this person's companionship is worth giving up some of your selfishness for. Love is deciding that someone else's happiness is the most important thing to you, but this only works if your happiness is the most important thing to him.

All I have to say is damn those movies and songs who give us a false impression. Damn them for making it look easy. I think these stupid movies are what contribute to the incredibly high divorce rate. A romance and courtship like those in the movies isn't likely cut out for success. What do you think happens to those characters when they bug each other, what happens when there is no money? What happens when they are both cranky because they've been up with sick kids all night? Or when there is a bitchy ex wife to deal with? Movies never show what happens when the rubber hits the road. A good, kind, reliable man (not necessarily a beautiful man) is what you need when the rubber hits the road. Love only lasts when you decide that you know the tough parts that are going to be present, you go in with your eyes wide open and you decide that you can live with those issues. You've picked your battles and are up to the challenges. You decide that even when crap comes up, you are getting enough benefit out of the situation that it is worth what you are putting in to it.

-The Short of it