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Category Archives: Family

Foundation

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I have an old cedar deck on the front of my house, and in one spot, the boards are being pulled a different direction by the house. I know a problem when I see one. Thankfully after 37 years I also know when it’s a problem I am not equipped to repair by myself. It’s a foundation issue.

Such was my life. Being pulled in a million directions results in you neglecting the priorities you really want to prioritize. I was scattered. Flailing. Desperate.

Not at all how anyone would like to be described.

And just like these boards of mine, I started from the top and have worked my way down. Ish.

I had faith in love again and was disappointed when it went sour. It happens. I’m definitely jaded at this point and have happily burned my V card. I intend to live out my life with a houseful of happiness. (and a dozen cats).

I’ve learned to recognize when I’m not good at something and let it go. I realized how much I needed my mom in my life, and we’ve never been closer after realizing that it’s time spent, that counts. She’s given me a million things over the years, but the week she spent with me after my baby was born wove the frayed ends of our bond back together again.

Ripping down the foundation means you have to put it back together brick by brick… and you only use the bricks you know to be the best. You pick your favorites and leave the broken empty bullshit in the pile.

When you only foster and encourage the best parts of you, every day counts. I’m living proof of the power of having faith in yourself and the ability to change your life.

I had a beautiful baby in July and she lights my life in more ways than I can describe …while she grins and poops at the same time. I still pinch myself every time she wakes me from the four hour power naps I survive on. She wakes up with a big smile and we get our routine on with a little Biggie Smalls. She’s my little Muffin.

muffin

My day begins with a diaper to change, diapers to wash. Jammies to hang up. Smiley baby to nurse. Lunch to pack.

Her big sister is a full fledged teenager, fighting me when she spots my weaknesses. I love her to bits and remember what it was like with her big brother and realize it’s just how they are. I’ve had a baby in each stage of my life. My teens (19), my twenties (24) and now my thirties (37). It’s all so different and similar at the same time. I have so much more patience now- and I feel bad for my older kids because they had the drill sergeant asshole mom.  The midlife crisis mom. Muffin gets the best of me. The weathered, hardened and tempered steel strong lady I’ve grown into. The mom who know knows dessert for dinner is healthy sometimes. The everything-can-wait-let’s read-another-book mom. The mom who makes the damn kids help in the garden. I’ve learned through success and failure to focus on what’s important and leave the rest behind.

I miss my coworkers. I miss having something to talk about beyond baby smiles, infant milestones and canning…. but I’m loving my life these days. I’m living in the moment and treasuring each one.

yarden2013

I grew that damn enormous acre of vegetables and it’s downright terrifying how many heirloom tomatoes I have. A thousand pounds, perhaps? More? It’s beyond epic. It’s a biomass.

toms

Gardening while growing a human is not for the faint of heart. I pulled off the impossible. It was spectacular- and froze last week (Thank GAWD) It wasn’t bad while I was pregnant, and actually helped my back feel better. It was soothing while I was nesting and needed more to clean. It’s amazing how many weeds I pulled with a 45 inch waistline. Muffin was born right when it started to produce and things got a little crazy. You can’t take a newborn into the blazing sun and the weeds grew right along with the plants, which I never found time to fertilize.

somanyheirlooms

Thank God, all the angels & saints too… because I would have had to call the gleaners to help take some of it away.

 

pantry

I’m canning with a newborn, which is intense- to say the least. I dice tomatoes… then sing patty-cake. Nap time for baby means running a few dozen jars of sauce, salsa, tomatoes, etc through the canner. My pantry is beautiful, and I treasure these months I’ve been devoting myself at home, full time. I love having all the laundry done. I smile when I see a fresh tablecloth on the kitchen table. I like cleaning light fixtures. I’m contemplating painting. It feels good to make home feel cozy and beautiful again. Getting rid of the excess and only keeping your favorite things results in a nice tidy home full of everything you love most. All bets are off where my crafty stuff is concerned.

One cannot own too much yarn, fabric or buttons. These are facts.

I’m baking again which is sinfully good and terrible for my ass at the same time. I roasted a baby sugar pumpkin from the garden yesterday and I’m making a few pumpkin rolls today. The house smells like a mom lives here again. I can’t even get a thigh in my old jeans. Damn. Pregnancy at 37 doesn’t go away as fast as it does when you’re younger… but I’ll get there. Right after this pumpkin roll… 🙂 I really don’t care, to be completely honest. I’m focusing on being a great mother, being a better friend and appreciating the people and season. There’s plenty of time for working out when this baby isn’t so tiny and new. If this sweet chubby babylove of mine is any indication, my breast milk is more like heavy cream.

hat

I spent nap time sewing for my baby sister yesterday. Her baby is due any day and they did not find out their baby’s gender. It’s fabulously exciting, but a pain in the ass when you’re buying or making gifts. I hope like crazy it’s a girl because her and Muffin would be so close in age. Either way, it was so nice to fire up the Pfaff again. I padded her presents with baby potatoes and actually managed to get it in the mail in time to make it there for her shower… I hope.

I started running again this week after trading a years worth of garden produce for an awesome jogging stroller. Muffin loves it and I’m happy to resume a healthy habit that makes me feel so much better.

Rebuilding a foundation takes time and patience but having strong footing makes all the difference. Ridding yourself of the junk that holds you back and drowns you out, frees up a lot of time to focus on the things you love.

So I’ve cleaned the house, put away enough food for a damn army and knit 4 hats, a sweater and one bootie.

homegrown

I grew a baby, grew a garden and kept stacking away on my new foundation. I’ve only used the bricks that make me a maternal bad ass with a black belt in organic gardening. I threw out the bullshit, burned the trash and life has never been more peaceful.

One of these days I’m going to get around to fixing that deck.

Jealousy is the ugliest color.

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hifromtheyarden

…….. and I love green. I have beautiful green eyes that I have blessed my children with. My fabulous redheaded Grandmother passed them to me, along with her innate ability to spot a lie carefully wrapped in good intentions… or bad.

I am not one to fuck with and I am not one to question.

Once upon a time, I wasn’t the most faithful girlfriend or wife for that matter. I broke promises and vows without a second thought. I didn’t feel guilty because I had no respect for myself or my integrity. I worked overtime to learn the hard way and paid the ultimate price. I went through every bad scenario you can imagine and some so awful I’ve had people question their legitimacy after I blogged about the horror.

If I learned anything in failing so consistently, it’s that I’m pretty fucking successful when I set my sights on something I want. I began to look at men like my very own box of favorite crayons. I like the dark colors best… Silky smooth and untouched by my playmates. Give me a brand new box of crayons and color me happy. I perfected the sweet smile thrown from lashes lowered and curled with the knowledge they granted me. I can smile the one I want into submission. I know it. Knowing it makes it that much more successful.

Beyond the packaging I’d carefully perfected to entice my prey… I’m smart. I listened. I paid attention. I exploited their weaknesses to my benefit and counted their broken hearts like trophies. I damaged the besotted and was further compromised by the disinterested.

I sold out.

At the end of the long dark road, or at the bottom of the barrel rather, I found myself waking up next to the Vagina Hoarder. Something so simple as him setting my earrings on the night table beside a bed made with sheets so scorching hot the air conditioner couldn’t compete with the rotation of unsuspecting women… his kindness made me second guess myself and wonder if he really could be different? Perhaps one nice guy had slipped through my douche bag radar? He wasn’t my type. He wasn’t my favorite color. He was the broken ass stubby neon orange crayon at the bottom of the box that everybody leaves until all the rest of the colors are broken and thrown away. He was the conquest I could not conquer and the war I couldn’t win.

Jealousy got the best of me and I will never regret anything more than that bad orange crayon.

In learning my lesson the hardest of ways, I moved on and found a great counselor. I never wanted to find myself with a handful of the colors I hated most… and I was exhausted by my failures.

I met someone who was legitimately nice to me, and decided that I should be nice to me too. I learned to treasure the parts of myself that made other people respect me- not the superficial things I wasn’t proud of that purely made them want me. I learned my value and taught the people in my life to value me too. I turned a page. I took a breath. I calmed the fuck down and quit acting like the Queen of Crayons.

Everyone is entitled to burn through a box- but at some point we all have to learn to throw broken shit away. Crayons are a dime a dozen… what you do with them can result in priceless works of art or bullshit scribbled doodles.

When you take a long hard look in the mirror and don’t like what you see? It’s up to you to change it. Get your hands dirty and plant something you can watch grow if you don’t know where to start and need inspiration. Be a blessing in your own life and it all just gets easier.

Jealousy makes you ugly. Jealousy is a purely personal emotion that can destroy relationships, ruin your self esteem and create situations you cannot escape with the best of intentions.

I’m currently overwhelmed by the insecure jealousy of my partner and it depresses me in ways I can’t convey. At a time I should be doing nothing but embroidering tiny Q’s on miniature tshirts and planning for the birth of my dreams… I’m center stage, watching someone ruin their whole life & future based on a couple misguided insecurities. My friends have become a target, my relationships with people who would shovel my snow and help me tie my shoes are criticized and questioned. I am under fire and smiling in the face of a future I didn’t envision and understand people may criticize me for.

I worked too hard to be surrounded by people with knives pointed in my direction. I have faith in the progress I’ve made and the miles I must go before it gets easier. I have it all because I have faith in myself and the strength of my integrity.

My dreams have a way of going up in flames. My best intentions are often misunderstood.

But fuck with my children and the people I love and brace your jealous insecure self- because as zen, sweet and peaceful as I am these days… I am, at my core- your worst fucking nightmare when you forget who I am.

Question the people who love and help me, and you’ll learn what it is to have your motives questioned. Push me to protect my children and you will envy Salman Rushdie and his unending fatwa.

Like my mama always says…

Careful when you give someone an ultimatum… because they just might take it.

Sigh. I’m tired of being disappointed in the people I’m supposed to be able to have faith in.

Just when you thought you’d seen it all together…

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My dear friend and tattoo diva is leaving. Moving back to a sunnier place… sob. I look up to her so much and value her opinion so much- I’m going to be a little lost without her and I’m kicking myself for not making more time to hang out with her in the past.

She helped me for 7 hours in my garden last week… and I knew in her voice that she was serious then. I just didn’t want to even consider it, really.

On my hardest days, when I’m at a cross-roads, when my life is a disaster, when I’m in love… I run for tattoo & sister therapy. I completely embrace my tattoo habit and I will probably be covered at some point. I have no doubt, because I’m already wishing I had more skin to color in. I have a habit… and my habit makes me beautiful.

I have a poppy and a honeybee princess for my daughter, a honeybee for my son and (my favorite) my queen bee. I have a regretful tramp stamp I would love to erase. I have a kanji symbol I’d love to transform into a tomato… I have the ghost orchid for my mother, the dandelion and birds I always wanted and a four leaf clover because I’m the luckiest girl ever when it comes to finding them. I have a poem about love on my foot complete with a little red heart that I adore. I look at my skin and smile when I used to frown.

It’s still a body too chubby for my taste, I still wear the same stretch marks. I just love the beautiful pictures painted into skin I’d previously resented. I’ve never worn flip flops. I hate my feet. Hate them. I have horribly ugly feet and I’m incredibly self conscious about them. Or was. I own three pairs now. I love the tattoo my darling sister-friend drew on my foot just a week before I landed in Puerto Rico with Thomas Murray. It’s gorgeous, and deserves to be shown off. I love that foot now- and there were moments in Puerto Rico that I stared at that foot and tried to channel her.

I also have a beautiful purple orchid that Nathan Steinbauer bought me a few days before my birthday… just before I found out what a pathological liar he is. I’d taken him in with me and he’d bought me a tattoo for my birthday- anything I wanted- no questions asked. He got a military tattoo for the Army Rangers, something he’d always lied about being. He went back for a second one- the day I found out about the other girlfriend.

Through it all, my darling friend has been there… fixing me when it hurts the most, with a beautiful new reason to love the woman that smiles back at me in the mirror.

I got a new one when I panicked over Superman. A beautiful dandelion with birds… feeling like I wished for him and was so fucking scared of something being so good that I was literally flying away from that same wish. Reminding myself to breathe and spoiling myself with some time with one of my favorite people, ever.

I miss her already, and I can’t imagine not having her to run to when I need advice rooted in love and compassion- and not sugar coated or biased. Good old fashioned strong woman advice, from someone I would like to be more like. Gentle in her words and actions, but confident in her ability and worth. She’s the sister I always wanted- and there’s a lump in my throat when I think about saying goodbye to her.

Also in the increased cost of my tattoos, because they’ll have to include a plane ticket from here on out. Sigh.

Another friend of mine was going in for a tattoo today, and it was the perfect excuse for another visit to say hello before it gets a whole lot harder.

We hung out and watched for a while, then chatted before heading out the door.

… and just when you think you’ve seen it all, and your heart is a little sad at the the thought of lost opportunities to make new memories… a new one just jumps right into your lap.

There on the sidewalk outside her door, is a man taking pictures of license plates. Standing in the middle of the road to photograph cars and actually crouching down to take close-ups of license plates. He has a favorite even… the poor innocent red Geo Metro parked directly in front of her shop.

WTF?

It gets weirder…….. He has his son with him. They’re walking around side by side while the dad squats periodically to take another picture of another license plate. Nobody does a thing- myself included. I weigh my options, to be honest- because I’m dying to hear what his excuse is… but anyone willing to do something that bizarre in front of their kid, obviously has a few screws loose and I love my life these days and treasure my safety.

But…

The blogger in me is already laughing… and I can’t resist… you’re welcome.

This is, after all, why God made iPhones.

and the mother in me has to stop for a moment and hope his wife or this child’s mother reads my blog… because this is worth a chat with good ol’ Dad about the crazy example he’s setting, if nothing else.

My daughter is instantly sympathizing with that poor kid, who must be so embarrassed… but my girlfriend and I are more than a little sketched out by him…. and his love for the Geo.

We waited to leave until he’d wandered on to photograph more license plates…. sort of hoping he’d be taking one of ours when we got there… (thankfully, no such luck.)

My daughter and I both climbed into the car and said simultaneously…

J & R- I’m sad she’s leaving, and gosh that was funny.

Another crazy funny memory with a woman I’m going to miss SO much. She gave me my Blogoddess tattoo the week my blog went viral and I was having a mild nervous breakdown. She’s filled in the blanks and taught me to not only love myself, but to love myself enough that I don’t have to give anyone an explanation about who or what I am.

She’s fixed the tattoos I hated, made beautiful the things about my body I resented & has been by my side during some of the most epic moments in my life.

I miss her already.

But no matter how far she goes… we’ll always have the Geo Metro Stalker.

Indomitable

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Happiness is free, and thank God too… because unemployment is rather stressful financially.

I’ve had plenty of reason to feel bad. Losing a job I needed to survive, watching people I thought were friends vanish as quickly as the dollars in my wallet and being 86’d for life from a place I’ve worked hard to support.

I’ve been a bitch, but I challenge anyone to tell me they’d react differently if they were walking around in my shoes.

I grew up with The Desiderata on the bathroom wall. At 6 years old I remember reading it every time I brushed my teeth. In high school it really made sense and now? I have my own copy hanging on my own bathroom wall. It’s the foundation of my hippie upbringing, and I find myself swimming in it lately.

I can be wicked hateful, and I arm myself with the details most offensive and use them to my benefit like bullets in my very own verbal arsenal. If I want to kick you where it hurts, you’re going to feel it. I’m one supercilious nightmare when inspired to be.

Which isn’t who I want to be, but who I need to be sometimes.

I take a lot of shit. I swallow a lot of pride. I also return the feeling, tenfold-when you push me too far.

I could ramble on and on with an acid tongue and a thesaurus of hurtful adjectives… but it’s just not who I am or who I want to be.

So they hate me. Oh well. I’m not terribly offended considering the facts on the ground.

So my dear friend is jealous enough to post offensive bullshit on my Facebook wall. Oh well. Jealousy doesn’t inspire me to love anyone, and I’m single. I’m fully entitled to inspire jealousy with absolutely no ramifications and beyond that? I know a man who opens his mouth only to bless me with his kindness and affection. Real words from a real man make jealous insults sting a lot less.

I wish I could say I’m surprised- but I’m not- just like I warned him…

J- You do not want to date me. We’re friends. You’re only going to hate me at some point. Trust me.

Guess who was right…

BUT….

Being hateful only drags me down to their level, something I’ve worked too hard to avoid in the last year.

So I flushed the hateful crap and took my little mangy hounds on a walk. I picked a bouquet of daffodils for the dinner table and hung the sheets on the clothesline. They’re crispy smooth and smell like sunshine and spring time.

I baked some honey wheat bread… and snuggled with my little mangy trio while cracking out on the first season of The Tudors…filling out the millionth job application. I weeded a row in the garden and planted more potatoes. I have about 15 pounds of seed potatoes left to plant… Good lord.

Hi, my name is Jenni and I’m a vegetable hoarder. I come from a beautiful line of hoarding gardeners- and hey… I absolutely loathe store-bought marinara. I may be a size 5 by the end of summer because the garden is out of control weedy…

Bonus! Free daily workout and veggies too? See how it starts? Too much of a good thing is still TOO MUCH.

I’m a little haunted by the silence and boredom in my daily life these days. I had the best interview I’ve ever had in my life yesterday, dinner and a drink with a dear friend last night and another favorite chick sighting this morning.

I know I’m being redundant… but for all the shitty men in my life? I am surrounded by phenomenal women.

My dear friend Miss Wisdom saved me yesterday with truth. Not bullshit flowery nonsense, but real “Get a grip and take your own advice” sort of words. Love her. Love them all…

It takes a real friend to see you making bad choices or flailing. We touched on the sorest of subjects…

W- Why would you go there, when you know he’s there and you know it stings and you know he’s bad for you.

J- I have a crush.

W- You HAD a crush… why would you like anyone who would treat you so poorly?

That applies to so many people in my life right now, it took my breath away. Perhaps I’m a glutton for punishment? Either way- it’s a thing of the past, and I’m cutting the bullshit out of my life at record speed.

Life is too short, and it’s too beautiful outside. My garden is all the challenge I need at this point, and my favorite flowers sprouted this morning.

Baby Bells of Ireland, smiling up at me and reminding me that everything is as it should be.

Life goes on- and happier when you cut the nonsense out of your life. More than that, it’s even better when you learn to love yourself first and let the assholes fall where they may in the hurricane of figuring out how to demand respect from people.

Or how to tell them to go fuck themselves.

Either way? I haven’t been so happy in months and I made a few hundred bucks today getting shit out of my garage.

Purging at a profit… now that’s the kind of chaos I can get behind.

Yeah I’m pissed off, offended and insulted- but I’m also single, smart & funny as hell. I’m doing what I need to do and remembering who I really am, now that I’m away from the cancerous source of suffering.

Welcome to the chaos of my fancy schmancy new life. It’s scary uncertain and full of potential disaster, but when I sink to the point I use my words to hurt someone instead of to free myself- I become an asshole like the rest of them.

No hate. No haterade… and most importantly?

No haters.

That right there is quite the victory, if I do say so myself.

The Last Straw

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Unfortunately my settings on one of these stupid dating sites has it chiming on my phone every time an email comes in, which is a lot. I finally sat down yesterday to change the settings in hopes of putting an end to the infernal distraction.

Success… oh and 22 new emails. I open the first one…

D- Hi.

That’s all. I see so many of these I just have to wonder what the hell these guys are thinking. You’re establishing contact with someone for the first time, hoping to spurn a response.

And all you’ve fucking got is Hi? Hello? Sup? Yo? Hey? I’ve seen them all and I never respond… but then you have to be a freak to ilicit a response from me because I’m only in it for the story at this point.

The playground is shut down for remodeling… and I’m a bored woman as a result. lol… I open the second email and it only gets better.

S-

4/28/2012 11:50:37 AM

Let me guess.. You found my profile more than a bit on the vulgar side.. Perhaps a bit disturbing as
well. you must have had a few glasses of wine to have even clicked on it.. I know your type.. Your a
mile above me.. And your clearly more than a bit too classy for my common ass.. but I might just
surprise you… And it’s not like I would expect you to tell your friends about me 😉

This guy has emailed me three times, and frankly; he’s repulsive. He’s not my type, I would really be being mean if I dated him.

What really stuns me, is that they make this assumption about me based on one picture, and one paragraph. Enough to insult me for not being interested in them.

They say women are crazy? Oh no. The penis-clad species is equally as crazy, if not more so, because they’re entitled to their jealousy. We’re supposed to understand that boys can be boys and “well you know he’s a man… he’s bound to be protective.

Turn those tables and you know what they call that girl? A date crasher. A stalker. A bunny boiler. Fatal attraction.

He’s protective, masculine, he just loves you a lot.

No. He’s a stalker and if I come up missing, check his house.

Yikers. A stalker is a stalker, is a stalker- and this guy is getting his panties in a bunch because he’s emailed me three times and I haven’t responded, but he can see that I viewed his profile.

Imagine him in real life. He’s the guy who stalks you daily, the one who wants to read your emails, look at your phone and account for every minute in your day and who you came in contact with. He “just stops by” and “just stays for the weekend”. Allowing this guy into your life is like petting a raccoon. They can imprint on you and follow you for life. They come in through windows, dog doors, chimneys. If they love you- they will do anything to be next to you.

It reminds me of fungus- no thanks.

The next email is a perfect example of why I’d really love to meet a nice woman every now and again. If anything inspires me to switch teams… it’s this guy.

USMC-

USMC

4/8/2012 12:18:29 AM
Wanna Chat
USMC

4/24/2012 10:59:16 PM
All girls like me I was in the military
USMC

4/24/2012 11:11:28 PM
And I have a very large penis

Yeah… he said that.

Like he actually expects a response finally that says “Oh well in that case, let’s chat” <eyeroll>

I don’t think I can even handle these internet retards any more. I may be officially ruined for men entirely.

Disgusted with the species… I signed out of the craziness that is meeting a date online.

I decided to make dinner and invite family over. My mama, her fabulous boyfriend, Sober One Kenobe and Mr. Man Card. My little princess.

Fresh pesto tortellini, asparagus, a green salad & garlic bread. Eclairs for dessert… with a glass of wine, around the kitchen table we’d pulled into the greenhouse and filled with spring flowers. It was a twinkly perfect evening full of the stuff that feels right. Family & friends and great food, laughing around the table in the light of white lights strung around the inside of the greenhouse with the smell of little tomatoes and flowers growing.

Internet dating cheapens what it’s supposed to be. You’re supposed to see a cute guy and smile. He’s supposed to ask for your number and you’re supposed to have dinner or something in this sort of circumstance. The twinkle lights are optional but I’d say they’re worth a few bonus points.

It’s supposed to be as good as dinner with your friends and family- it’s supposed to leave you smiling the next morning, washing a stack of dishes and throwing the tablecloth in the washer.

Internet dating is depressing- and that’s not what I’m looking for.

I can do without the creepy stalking oversharers.

I officially quit my internet presence as potential prey. I climbed out of the mud puddle.

……..and I feel cleaner already 🙂

Dear Dad…

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Smiling to my toes and happy… I got ready for work with the music blasting, dancing through the house between the bathroom and my bedroom looking for something to wear. High on love and anticipation.

Make-up done, hair in pigtails… and my phone rings. My little brother!!! I love him the best and we connect even though we didn’t grow up together. I answer and he’s quiet.

B- I have bad news. Dad died.

Time stops for a second when you hear this sort of news. Everything seems too loud….and I have 20 minutes to get to work. Totally and completely in shock and facing a busy night with the BCS Championship game on.

I was on autopilot all night. Coasting through a packed restaurant and somehow ending up with all the little tables. Thank God too, because I’m definitely not very chipper. Everybody was happy and watching the game, so it was easily managed chaos all night. My last table was my favorite Ms. Sassypants- who I’ve missed. I swear she tipped me more than the total of her tab, lol… I sat down at the bar with a beer and sunk into it finally. Grief… such an overwhelming feeling.

I met my Dad for the first time when I was 8 years old. I’d asked my mom if I could meet him and we were visiting family in Utah. He agreed and we had lunch at Wendy’s. First time I ever had a chocolate frosty and a cheeseburger. He didn’t know we were vegetarians and didn’t ask what I wanted. My only clear memory beyond the food was that nobody said anything. Super awkward… and we parted with a wave. He sued my mom for custody a month later, and won holiday visitation with me every year. Spring break, summer vacation & Christmas.

I remember it being a strange feeling to see someone that I looked so much like, and didn’t know. I was never comfortable with him, ever. He just never really was my dad. My dad was the one who drove me to school and baked my birthday cake.

He blessed me with a brother and two sisters that I love more than anything. He gave me another mom in my siblings mother. Then he divorced her and never took care of any of us ever again. No child support, no call on your birthday. Nada. King Deadbeat.

There’s really no other way to put it. These are facts…

I bought myself a ticket to go see him when I was sixteen. It was Christmas, and I missed my siblings and knew he’d have them for the holiday. He spent the entire time with his girlfriend and I left and went to stay with my Aunt instead. He never forgave me for it.

I tried to mend things with him after my son was born, about 4 years later. We stopped by my grandparents house for a visit and he spent a half hour calling himself Grandpa to a two year old that clung to my thigh and eyed him warily. For good reason, considering it was the only time he ever saw him.

He never met my daughter. I sent pictures when she was born, and we sent him a Christmas package. I sewed him a quilt, and tried one last time to salvage some sort of relationship with him. Something about the birth of my own children made me want to fix everything. He said he never got it… but the confirmation came through that he had. I’m not sure why he’d lie about it… but he did… and it was the last straw.

I wrote him one last letter, and never spoke to or saw him again. I told him about all the holes his absence left in my childhood, and about the dad I made up to tell people because he was so unmentionable. I gave all the hurt and the pain and disappointment every kid with a deadbeat dad can empathize with- back to him. I told him how much I hated him for what he made my mother go through & thanked him for my promiscuity and early entry into parenthood.

Not necessarily what every dad wants to read, and certainly not entirely his fault on every level… but I went above and beyond to hurt him in return.

I never heard from him again…. so those angry hurtful words are the last thing my dad heard from me. He was 56, and died alone, when he had four of the most loving people in the world as his children. Talk about the definition of tragic.

I’m too happy and too much in love to be angry or hurt by him anymore. I feel sorry for him more than anything, and I wish I’d left him with nice words in his heart instead of the rant he got. He deserved it- for sure- but on a personal level it’s hard to fathom that there’s not time to fix it anymore. He’s gone, never having been my dad… or my children’s grandfather.

I can’t mourn him like I should because I don’t have any way of knowing what a loss it is.

So I’m tossing words on up to heaven… or down to hell if that’s where he ended up. I’m on the fence about either place but if the rumors are true and you have to be virtuous to get in? He’s heading south. Sorry, but it’s true.

Dearest Dad,

Whoa… time ran out, huh? I didn’t see that coming, and I’m sorry that you died alone like I told you I hoped you would. It could have been so different, and I’m sorry you died with so many things left undone and so many apologies left unsaid.

You missed all of your children’s weddings. All three of your daughters were given away by someone else. You didn’t know any of your seven grandchildren, many of whom look like you. I am so sorry for you that you missed so much.

Thank you for our beautiful smiles- that look just like yours. Thank you for the strength you taught all of us in not being reliable. Thank you for the fine examples of women you gave us by forcing our mothers to raise us alone. You had amazing taste in women, truly.

You fed me steak and crawdads for the first time. Thank you- I love both ♥  You taught me how to fish in the summer and spent days in the sun chasing lizards with us at Flaming Gorge. You were a pretty awesome Disneyland dad when you wanted to be. You bought me my first designer jeans… bright red even. You spoiled me rotten when I was in front of you, and you always told me you loved me.

More than anything though… you get out of life what you put into it. You taught me to love out loud and sincerely, and to follow up my words with actions because integrity is rare.

Though you didn’t help much in the shaping of who I’ve become, you gave me life and the tools I needed to make mine a happy one. I love you- and I hope your soul is at peace.

I have heard it ALL.

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Nursing one of the most intense full body hangovers in my life, I barely survived work. Caught between the urge to vom and every muscle in my entire body sore and achy. I feel about 85 years old and handicapped.

I want to climb into bed and die for 12 hours.

However… my sister is in town and I have to somehow rally for sister date 3.

Jesus, Mary & Joseph, I don’t know if I can pull it off.

Run home after work, nurse a beer slowly in the hopes of keeping something down, while praying the pounding in my head will stop. Shaky tired and looking like death warmed over.

Makeup, and lots of it. Shiny red lips. Anything to disguise the suffering I’m enduring. I cannot believe I’m actually going to go through this again.

I see my Wild Ass sister so seldom that I’m not going to miss an opportunity to spend more time with her. I feel horrible, but I’d rather feel horrible with her than without.

Ouch though… I’m beginning to realize it’s for the best that we don’t all live in the same city.

I walk back in to meet them downtown and they look genuinely shocked to see me. Mr. Mahalo smiles.

M- You look hot, wayyyy better than you looked an hour ago.

J- Thanks, I still feel ghastly.

My sisters are heading to a sketch party to make an appearance and I just don’t have it in me. I go with one of them for a drink down the street- praying it will ease my suffering… but it simply makes me a sitting duck, with overly confident drunk boys swarming around me.

One in particular can’t seem to hear me say no. I tried being diplomatic.

J- You’re very nice, but I’m not interested.

D- Are you seeing someone?

J- Yeah, I am.

D- Where is he?

J- Out of town…

D- Then he deserves to have you stolen.

J- I only date men older than me, sorry.

D- What are you …. like 27?

I may not look 35, but come on. We know when you’re bullshitting us because you have unzipping on the brain. I just kept migrating away from him, and he kept coming back… like the fucking fleas on my little Tucker Max.

I’m trying to stay conscious and I’m praying the veins in my temples don’t burst… my entire soul hurts… and my patience is wearing thin. He sits down next to me and keeps touching me while I’m fielding his creeper hands and getting progressively more annoyed…. but he starts talking and it’s so fucking funny I can’t resist… I have to let him go on- purely to tell y’all about it. This guy is saying the craziest things I’ve ever heard, and I suffered through internet dating for a year. I looked up at the Vagina Hoarder and he air-typed to me- so I know he’s hearing this craziness too.

I have no choice but to name him Mr. Douche… because this is what holds all men back. Show some respect for fuck’s sake.

D- I make a mean breakfast.

blink, blink, blink.

D- I hate to be sentimental but can you imagine how happy our moms would be? They’re friends, they’d get to hang out all the time now and we could have beautiful babies.

J- Yeah I don’t think the man in my life would appreciate that. It’s not going to happen.

D- Do you know how many times I effed my girlfriend and pretended she was you?

J- Um. Eww. I never want to hear that- that gives me a complex wondering who’s done that with me. Not cool.

D- You can keep your clothes on. I just want to kiss you. I’ll make you breakfast even if you don’t want to have sex. But you will.

J- It’s not going to happen.

Apparently no makes men go apeshit because the guy to my left is starting in now.

#2- You’re crazy fuckin beautiful.

J- Uh…. thanks I guess?

#2- What are you drinking?

J- Water, I had too much fun last night.

#2- You know what you need? A protein drink.

Good lord… someone may potentially have children with this idiot at some point. I don’t know if I should be offended, horrified or just plain amused.

Mr. Douche is only amping up his crazy game.

D- I’ve lost 37 pounds and my dick is an inch longer, that means when I hit it, it’ll be an inch deeper.

I can’t honestly believe I’m hearing this but it’s so funny I have to let him go on. If he touches me one more time I’m going to snap.

D- Doing you would be like Christmas. Let’s celebrate Christmas early.

I swear on a stack of bibles I’m not making this shit up. It was so funny at a certain point that I just sat and laughed at him. WTF… I had my one standard line.

J- It’s never going to happen.

He hands me an ice cube.

D- If you’re going to say no, then you should put this in your pants to cool off.

I dropped it and must have looked as horrified as I felt because for the first time, he apologized.

Why is it that rejection motivates men to dig deeper? I hate to admit it but it does the same thing to women sometimes. This is priceless, but he wont stop touching me… which is when the darling bouncer comes over and tells him to beat it. Awww 🙂 What a guy. I’m so hung over I’m defenseless and it’s getting wonky.

D- Last chance gorgeous- I make great eggs.

J- I don’t eat eggs. Have a good night.

Oy… some boys should be collared, leashed and kenneled.

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