October 31, 2007

Katie's Halloween Costume

I guess it's time to call pest control.

(Happy Halloween!)

October 30, 2007

Warm Halloween Memories

I just got done making Andes Mint Cookies for my dad. Andes are his favorite candy, so I thought he'd especially like these. He does so much for us and it's a small way to say thanks. They look pretty good, don't they?

Oh, and I must tell you I love, love, LOVE the show Reaper on the CW. It's on Tuesday at 9pm. It's funny and charming and well, I love it! Thank you.

Anyway, tomorrow marks the one-year anniversary of the last time I saw my in-laws. I didn't realize it at the time, but that night would turn out to be the nail in our dysfunctional family coffin. (Wow! I even managed a Halloween-themed joke there. I'm good.)

Last year at this time I was suffering from severe Post-Partum Depression (I was later diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder as well) and I felt worn out mentally and physically. I felt mostly dead inside, like my life was over. I was ordered to see a therapist by my OBGYN to help with my depression. My therapist asked me to bring Katie to that night's session. It's unbelievable to me now how stressful it was just to get her ready and put her in her car seat. I wanted to cry. It was the first time I ever went anywhere with her by myself. My therapist revealed later that was exactly why she asked me to bring the baby out: so I would have to get over the hurdle while she was there to help me.

I finally came home around 7:30 pm starving, tired, my broken body aching to lie down. I was greeted by Dan informing me that his parents had called and insisted on coming up to see the baby. I remember crying and trying to explain how tired I was, but he didn't want to tell them no. So I left, running off to Target like I was fleeing to Canada during the war. I hated to leave without the baby, but I told him I just COULD NOT be home when they came.

I was walking around Target--truly alone for the first time in more than nine months--and I started panicking about being away from Katie. Then a flood of resentment washed over me and I got angry.
It dawned on me that I shouldn't have had to leave my own home. I should have been able to say no (my therapist even said so) just because. I can't honestly say my brain was working in the fine genius form it is today, but I decided to go home and ignore anyone at my house. (My house is conveniently laid out so that you could avoid the living room by going through the kitchen, through the dining room, and into a small hallway that leads to my bedroom. Perhaps an angry antisocial woman designed it.)

I remember giggling to myself when I considered my plan. I drove home actually excited because I had a plan. My clouded brain didn't even calculate what the outcome would be because at that moment I didn't care how anyone else felt. So I went home, hung my coat in the closet near the front door and ignored Dan's father when he made some I'll-try-to-say-something-to-you-even-though-you-suck comment about taking my parking space in our driveway. I walked into the kitchen and dropped off my bags. Halfway there! Then I breezed through the dining room and into my bedroom, shutting the door behind me. I suddenly realized that I could possibly be in for a boring evening if they chose to stay for any extended period of time.

"C'mon, let's go!" the father said loudly. Had he gotten the message?
"But we just got here!" the mother whined. She obviously missed it.

Dan's parents and brother got up and left, but not without his mother yelling back to me: "Gooooooodnight, Kelly!" I would be in prison right now if I had a suitable weapon. (A book does NOT make a suitable weapon. My brain wasn't all that foggy.)

Sure, it was wrong of me! But that was the only time in nine years I ever ignored them. They never knew about the Post Partum. I didn't want them to know. They were ashamed that I had to have a
C-Section so much so that they didn't tell anyone, so how could they handle anything? Our therapist now says it's a good thing because they wouldn't have understood and it would have made it worse. I should get an honorary psych degree.

I called Dan's mother a week later to apologize, but it wasn't accepted.

Halloween suddenly became my favorite holiday.

My Never List

Divorce is an odd thing. It's such an official-sounding word for something that happens very regularly. Imagine if we vowed some sort of oath to friends and neighbors and family. Relationships change because people change. How many times have you promised to love someone? Some friends come and go and it's not because you don't necessarily want to be friends. It's just that you grow apart. Your circumstances change. Family ties sever. There's a Less Than Jake song that says: "I could give you lessons on how to ruin your friendships." Unfortunately, I think I identify with that (but that's for another post).

I used to be one of those "Never" people. I'm not proud of it and I could honestly blame my naivete, youth, and lack of world experience. I was one of those people who would say that I would Never do something or something would Never happen to me. How damn stupid. All it seems to take is one big experience from your Never List to change how you look at the rest of the items on your list. I've had experiences that I really never considered would happen to me. I thought I would be above them. I would prevent them. I thought I was too good, pure, kind, smart, healthy...the reasons are endless. But what I didn't consider is that none of that matters. Fate will cut you down. Anything that has happened to someone else could happen to you.

When I was in high school I told my father I would never have sex before I was married. His response was surprising to me. He warned me that maybe I shouldn't really make such a statement because it's impossible to say what you will do before you're in that situation. NO, I corrected. I would NEVER. I thought he would have been thrilled with my statement. I was insulted. I didn't realize that in his years of experience he knew better than to say NEVER. I expected it of myself, mainly because I hadn't had a boyfriend, and the tingles of sexual arousal hadn't permeated ("penetrated" would be an inappropriate word choice here) my inexperienced world. Another words, it's easy to be a virgin when you have no temptation. (I believe religions are founded on somewhat of the same idea.)

Then in college I fell in love with a boy. He was everything I wanted. I swear I loved him before I even knew him. We started dating and he finally kissed me (on our third date) after my friend instructed me to "Make eye contact, dammit!" when I complained of no kisses before that. It was my first kiss--ever. I drove home with butterflies and tears of happiness. But I would soon find out that I was afraid of him. I was afraid of getting close. I really wanted to, but I would stop myself from feeling anything because the feelings were new and scary to me. He probably grew tired of the game and we eventually became platonic best friends. I spent a lot of years questioning myself as he and I did "couple" things together. I hated myself for not listening to my heart.

Then I fell in love with a boy. He was everything I wanted and with him I felt completely comfortable. He would kiss me and I would love it and I no longer let myself feel guilty because I wanted to truly love him. I wouldn't let my Never List ruin my feelings. Dan asked me to marry him and I am declaring here that an item was crossed off my Never list. I couldn't resist. (But I am still proud of my decision to wait until I was in a deeply committed relationship and that Dan was the only one.) The only regret I had at that point was not doing it sooner! Did I really love Boy #1? I thought so, but maybe my resistance was a sign of something else and it wasn't from what I thought was super strength. I had no choice but to surrender to my feelings for Dan without so much as a heartbeat. I fell in love with him so easily. Even now, loving him is like breathing to me.

And coincidentally, at my wedding to Dan, Boy #1 professed his love and regret over not being able to be with me. Maybe his Never List changed that day.

October 27, 2007

Emergency Sleep Run

Post ideas pop into my head all the time, but never when I'm in front of the computer.

I have my coat and shoes on, even though I'm also ready for bed. I thought I'd have to go on a little ride in the car with my baby tonight. (That would have been a sexy statement a few years back, but now it's literal.) Katie seems to be sick or tired or sick of being tired and I don't know how to help her. She's never really been sick.

It's quiet. Dan seems to be getting her to sleep finally. You could see I'm a huge help as I type out my feelings of inadequacy on here instead of facing them. That should really help in the future, I'm sure. It's a terrible feeling when you feel helpless. I hate myself for not knowing how exactly to remove her discomfort. I now know what my dad was always talking about when he used to say that he'd take the pain away from me and give it to himself if he could.

There's been too many times in my life when I've felt like I can't control a situation. I don't really consider myself a controlling person, but I like to have a fair grasp on things in general. There's a lot of situations I don't feel like I have much control over in my life right now, although some might argue. Maybe I don't want to control them. Or maybe it's exactly how I want it.

October 20, 2007

My New Car

I needed somewhere to put my sticker!

October 14, 2007

'Tis Merely a Flesh Wound

I just bent down and planted a big kiss on the MySpace ass I've been avoiding for a long time. That's right, kids, I now have a profile on there. Perhaps I'm getting brazen or something about my inclusion into the IPP (In-Law Protection Program), but I needed to have a profile to see pics. And I wanted to see pics of my best friend from high school.

I got duped into signing up for Classmates.com last week. Supposedly, someone wanted me to join so they could contact me. I'm not usually one to do something because someone wants me to, but they caught me in an accepting mood. I knew it was probably an elaborate marketing ploy. They have a questionnaire and it asks for your biggest pet peeve, but there was a pull-down menu only. I was hoping for an open field to fill in since my pet peeves are obviously (according to the creator of Classmates' pull-down menu) not common. I mean, yes, I do hate people who talk during movies. That is probably my biggest one. But I also hate dirty microwaves and I didn't even get to express it. I also have a problem with people who send greeting cards to people who are not speaking to them. You mean that's not common?

I screwed myself up before because I fell asleep for a few hours. Now it's 11:30pm and I should be going to bed, but I don't feel tired. I'll regret it tomorrow morning when Katie wants to get up at 8am and I feel like rolling over. Luckily I've instilled in her good sleep habits.

I know I'm rambling. Perhaps these will be...productive musings? [Enter creative smirk here.]

Katie's walking full time now. She must have figured out that it's easier/faster to walk than to crawl. Besides, the knees must suffer. My knee is killing me. It's an old injury. I wish it were from field hockey or something athletic, but it's from when I fell going up stairs at work. A woman was holding the door for me so I hurried, only to trip over a step and fall hard on my knees before coming to rest two inches from her shoes. There's no cool way to recover from that. I went to the hospital and they told me that I had possibly broken my knee cap, but it was later revealed that I had only damaged the knee. I even went for rehab. Now if I only I could tell when it was going to rain, at least it would have been worth my while.

October 13, 2007

I Feel Nothing...Now

I'm really angry right now. I'm experiencing so many emotions that I'm not supposed to be feeling. I feel mad, resentful, and hateful. I've joked on here about being part of the In-Law Protection Program. Fuck that. I don't want them to find me or contact me, but I would never try to deny how much I hate them. I only wish that I didn't feel this way for ME, in a selfish way. I know that hating someone actually ends up eating you from the inside like some sort of sick cancer, but I can't help it. I will feel this for a few minutes, write about it to get it out of my brain, and then take a deep breath and forget my loathing.

What pisses me off in a way is that today was Katie's first birthday party. It was a great party filled with family members who I care about and who love the family I have made. They accepted Dan and they love Katie so much. Today was a great day because we celebrated the day that my beautiful little girl came into the world. Yeah, I guess I had something to do with it, but birth is a strange phenomenon because you kind of feel like it happened to you and you didn't have much to do with it. I guess it's the old joke about being pregnant--the baby is coming out whether you like it or not. But I celebrate that day because it was the most wonderful moment of my life when I saw my little baby for the first time.

So, that being said, all of my anger has only materialized in the last half hour. Not bad, if you talk to my therapist, since I may have had negative feelings interfere with special days in the past. But I'm a changed woman, man! I lumbered through the day with a Fuck-It! attitude because we deserve to celebrate. Katie certainly deserves that and I think Dan and I do, too.

I retrieved a card from the mailbox that came a day late from Dan's mother, but I put it in the cupboard so he wouldn't see it until after the party. I was trying to keep him in a state of ignorant bliss and it worked.

So then he opened the card and she included a little typed message for Katelyn (who I shouldn't have to explain cannot read yet!). It was a prayer (if you know me, say "HA!" with me now) that God will always bless her and his light will always be her guide, blah blah blah. His mother said that they hope Katelyn feels love from God the same way that they would love to hug and kiss her on her special day but can't.

Jason, you're probably laughing your hardy, great laugh right now. I could hear it in my head and I'm smiling with you, buddy. Thanks for it, because it's making me laugh too. Yes, I'm mean. Yes, I'd love to go burn that letter on her doorstep. Yes, I'd like to then open the door and punch her in the head. I really sound like I'm in therapy for all this shit, don't I?

I'm laughing out loud now. Just view my profile pic and you'll get an idea. I feel better because I'm realizing that I shouldn't be mad about something so GODDAMN STUPID! Dan usually says something wise when I least expect it and he said that maybe God IS helping the situation. Just because it's not the outcome they want, they think their prayers are being ignored. There's so many of those little adages that are popping in my head right now and the one that applies is: You'll catch more bees with honey than with vinegar. If Dan has gone over to the atheist dark side with yours truly, would you send a PRAYER?

My therapist says I should try to feel nothing. NOTHING. That's going to take a lot of work, my friends. But I do agree that NO response to their card is the best thing. (In the past I would have returned it, possibly with a little note of anger.) A negative response is still something and obviously my in-laws are sucker for anything negative.

SIGH. DEEP BREATH. I feel nothing....