Saturday, February 27, 2010

Of Grudges, Death, and Hat Boxes

Yesterday and today have been spent worrying. I suspect there will be some more of that tomorrow, and the work week brings blessed relief and the ability to DO something, to change situation, and fix the problem.


I have an ancient, ancient copy of Rudyard Kippling's The Elephant's Child. My grandma read it to me, and I read it to her. By the time I was 19 and both my grandparents (paternal) had passed away, the only thing I wanted was this book. I was looking through it today, and saw a picture of my as a child and my grandmother stuck in it. It made me think of cleaning out my grandparents' house, and my aunt.

Oh, my aunt. She and my father, her brother, have always had a high conflict relationship. I don't know who aggravated it more, or what family members made it worse, but it was firmly entrenched by the time I came along. It wasn't a feud, but close.

What I understand now is that watching your parents become more helpless, age, and die must be a terrible thing to watch happen, especially when you feel you've left things unsaid. Then, I was 19, and I just watched, alone, as my grandfather died. I couldn't handle the drama; I needed to figure out how to handle what I saw. My mom and I began cleaning out the house--there is always junk, unnecessary things. We thought the empty, broken hatbox was one of those things.

Apparently, it wasn't. My aunt from zero to sixty, accusing my mother and I of breaking into the house, looting and trashing things, destroying all that was good in the house, and good in the world. Then she let loose on my mother about how I was a terrible child, because she was a terrible mother, and I would have been better raised by wolves. The thing I should have done, my aunt said, was take her away from you and raise her myself.

The grief was talking. There isn't a kernel of truth to this, and I couldn't have asked for a better mother. I was furious. My dad wasn't defending her, and neither were my siblings. I marched one mile in the dark and rain to my grandparents' house where my aunt was wallowing and told her off. I'm sure I addressed the looting issue, but I don't remember. I do remember telling her I would throw myself off a bridge before I ever went to live, if this was an example of how she thought people should be treated. I said everything I could think of to hurt her like she had hurt me and mine. I'm quite sure it worked. Even now, I don't feel regret when it replays in my mind.

We all tried to forgive each other. It was the grief talking. That's what we all said, over and over. But it got worse and worse, culminating in my aunt inviting my sister to her daughter's wedding, but refusing to my father's face to invite my brother or myself. My father was furious--my brother and I did a dance of celebration, and laughed at my sister, who was a dutiful daughter, niece, and cousin, and went. Not unforgivable, but in light of it all, it was the last thing.

I've tried, on and off. There are Christmas Cards, and thank you notes, and wedding invitations, but every time I get to the point where I think, I can pick up the phone and call you... I get the passive aggressive letter, the note, the snub, etc. Her husband is sick, and she blocks us from talking to him and sending cards. Her daughter's husband turns out to be a psychopathic abuser, and she says nothing to us, when we would have reached out.

I held that book in my hand twenty minutes ago, and I remember how angry I was when I first claimed the book. I wanted nothing other than this ratty old book, and it disappeared from the house. From May until December, I blamed my aunt for taking the only thing that made me cry. On December 25th, it was waiting for me under the Christmas tree. My mom wanted to put a picture in it of my grandmother and me before she gave it to me.

Did she deserve this? I don't know. I blamed her for it, and she had nothing to do with it. But sometimes I think she earned it through all the rest.

There was so much damage to that hat box. It was old, and barely on the hinges, and the box material itself was dryrotting. It was empty. There's been so much damage to this relationship. It's old, with too much history, and the hinges are broken. There is nothing but emptyness exchanges between the parties.

Can we forgive without regret? How do we let go? Do we let go? Do we try, but keep our guard up? Do we try with open hearts? Or do we stop drinking from the glass we know has made us sick every time before?

Friday, February 26, 2010

Taking Work Home

I would say thank God it's Friday, but Fridays are becoming a pattern of bad days.

Here we go again.

Monday, February 22, 2010

I Am Cavewoman

Snack = Pistachios = Love.

Dinner: steak (on sale!) and sweet potatoes (which is not really cheating, since Telly and I went for a run. In that case, sweet potatoes are allowed.) and some kind of salad (olive garden dressing!).

Dessert: almond muffins--no flour or any kind of starch--made with almond and pecan flour. With blueberries in the middle.

And here I thought this diet would be hard... it's been a breeze. Kind of like my Breeze Almond Milk... yes, that's right. I don't drink regular milk anymore, because my body turns it directly into sugar. So, almond milk, and I actually like it better. My beef with milk has always been that it taste like nothing, so it ends up tasting like the carton. Not so--now it tastes like almonds.

Drum Roll......

Down ten pounds from I started this, and down a size. And of course, the added health benefits, yada, yada, yada.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Paint Me a Picture

In the interests of distraction, I have been playing with paint swatches.

Bedroom: blues, with an accent wall, with blue going into the bathroom. (or should I do browns or oranges?)

Kitchen: it's a pale green. Meh. Leave it that way.

Living room / entry way: It's all white right now. I need SOMETHING more. Maybe just an off white or cream, something warmer.

Office: oranges. Love orange. So warm and toasty, especially since we might change it into a library someday.

Dining room: egg plant purple is what it is, and what it shall remain. Especially since I have now have Georgia O'Keeffe's "Petunias" in there.

Future baby room: two shades of green. Envisioning this separated by a border, low on the wall. So cute!

Future other baby room: Help?

Guest room? Help?

Basement: Help? (NO WINDOWS in the basement. So how do you do that with colors? I am so tired of tanish cream)

Come on people. It's a lazy Sunday. Help me out! Tell me what yours is like, or your best ideas!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

And Then it was Thursday

Last night: home after 8 pm.

Tonight: home after 8 pm.

Plan: take husband's picture to work to memorize.

Plan: keep map in car, indicating route to get home, so I do not forget.

Tomorrow is a new day. I never could get the hang of Thursdays, though.

Saturday, February 13, 2010


It was so bad, so bad, so bad that I had to make the call. Yesterday. Then I dreamt all night about what brought this situation about, and hoped all night there would be no retaliation. It was sad, and it was exhausting.

Both of senior attorneys in the office assured me it was right. I know it was; that's not what was making me sick. It's just that no child should have to see life this way.

My dog watched the water run out of the bathtub last night, and he was fascinated. I watched the water run out, and a small part of me wondered if some where out there, someone was running out of time and hope.

I'm going to breakfast with Vor and our close friends and family. That, and sleeping next to my husband, is like plugging the drain, and filling up again with love, and hope.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Better Than Chocolate

This week, Vor came home with groceries.

The way the weekend had been meant I wasn't able to go to the grocery store for our usual shopping, and I hate going to the grocery store after work. It's crowded, I'm tired, the dog is home crossing his legs and his eyes are turning yellow.

So, Vor brought groceries home. While I was telling myself not to get too emotional and cry out of sheer happiness over the groceries, he then produced yellow tulips (two lips are better than one! Tangent: in high school, we had tulips as the spring decor on our door of my all girls school, and we then put that as the slogan on the door. My homeroom teacher thought it was hilarious. The nuns took it down. ANYWAYS) and then the waterworks started. Vor thinks I am nuts. He might be right.

This weekend, we aren't doing anything valentiney. I really always hated it anyways. On Saturday, we are meeting friends for breakfast. Saturday evening, we are geeking out and going to the Indiana State Museum to see the "For the Love of Lincoln" exhibit. Geeking. Out. So much better than chocolate, dinner, and movie.

Tonight is this for dinner. Ravenous.

I have always preferred Mac to PC/windows, but I have truly discovered the joy of the iChat. People! I talk to my nieces and nephews every day! I see them everyday! I talk to my siblings every day and see them! I have never talked so much to my brother in my entire life! And since my parents were visiting my sister, I got to see them too. Amazing. I am completely converted, sold, and I am not only drinking the purple kool-aid, I am doing a keg stand with the purple kool-aid.

I don't know what to make of this ridiculousness that Indianapolis makes out of snow. 2 inches of snow is not a blizzard. You should not shut down school for four inches. You really should be able to plow the roads before 1 pm. Eight feet of snow is a problem. Eight feet of snow meant I could jump off the roof of my parents house, and it meant at least two days off from school. Eight inches is not a problem. But man, eight feet of snow was really fun...

I need new friends. Well, not clean house new, keep the old, and all that, but I need a few more. I have very few close female friends--two to be exact--and if anyone is feeling temperamental or stressed out, it tends to mean I have no one to turn to hang out with or be stressed out to. Other than Vor. I think Vor needs me to have a few more friends. I'm not really good at the reaching out part, but I am trying, hesitantly. Maybe I will set up an application on this blog... mmm. I had a friend who set up a girlfriend application on his blog. I don't think that ended well. Serves him right.

What else is better than chocolate?

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

S/He's Got a Type

Hello all you family law attorneys out there:


I have one comment/question: Have you noticed how disturbingly similar the new wives/husbands are compared to the old wives/husbands? In looks, at least? I've two this past week that could be dead-ringers for each other. Pardon the pun.

That's all. I might have something more interesting for you later this week.

Monday, February 8, 2010

See Gulch, Bone Dry

I don't want to talk about Sunday, so if you have some wiseass comment about how the Colts shouldn't have let their perfect season go AND lose the SB, take them else where, because you find yourself unable to return if you dare.

We didn't do our usual grocery shopping on Sunday, and now, we have nothing for dinner. I hope Vor is the mood for eggs... or maybe a BLT (no bread for me. sigh. there were cupcakes last night, and I could SMELL the M&M's, and the cookies, and the OH MY GOD snickers salad with coolwhip and strawberries I just wanted to burry my face in all of it, but instead I held and bounced Baby H for a loooooong time).

I saw the Tim Tebow add. It was... lame? I really hate corny commercials with faked cuteness at the end. Not that they don't have a really, honest, and loving relationship in real life, but stuff like that doesn't come across in a 30 second commercial. It comes across as awkward.

I've made a conscious decision to not be political here, so that's that.

I don't know what to say here anymore. I started this all as a way to keep the writing creativity going, but I feel like that part of my life is either behind me, or something I still have to do with a blue pen and graph paper (seriously, how I did my best work). I have no topics for you, and I have nothing funny. My life is work, and I can't talk about that here. The creative writings I do, I'm pretty reluctant to post here, because then someone might take them and claim them as their own. My life is my time with Vor, and I like keeping him to myself, and not sharing him all that much with you. You can have the dog.

So, this is a really lame reach out, for the total of about twenty people I KNOW read this blog, even if you lurk (I really pulled that number number out of my pocket), please, tell me something. Do you have a good topic? A good idea for writing dry spells? Anything you wish you see me write on (I know, I'm that important)?

Excuse me. I have to go push the dog into a snowbank. He loves it.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

When Words Fail

Yes, he is still alive. I know you were worried. What did he do that was so bad? He was so angry that Vor had shut him out of the office where he was talking on the phone that he walked over and peed on the rug in front of the office door. (At least, this is my interpretation. It could be that he had been standing in front of the door saying you stupid humans, can't you see I've been pacing? I have to peeeeeeeee! There was screaming, there was whimpering, there were tears, human and puppy alike, and there was cleaning solution.

He's just a puppy, after all.

Somewhere in the chaos, I've stopped really writing in this. My calender at work is starting to get double booked, and I'm in court more often than not. It's a good thing that I still like this job, because I am tired.

The cases are getting worse. We're not sure whether people are getting worse, or other organizations that usually handle the worst of the worst are overbooked, or WHAT THE HELL is going on, but something is. I saw a picture of one the children today, and I almost had to put my head between my knees. I can't imagine who would do that to a small child with pigtails. The worst part is, you can't even see the real damage.

The first three weeks of the stupid paleo/caveman diet were agony. I wanted to make a bed out of bread, I wanted to swim in cream, I wanted to dress in pasta, and I wanted to finger paint with chocolate.

Okay, I ALWAYS want to have chocolate on my fingers. That will never change.

Now, the cravings have leveled out. I don't have a problem saying no to bread, etc., and I've found I ike spaghetti squash better than spaghetti itself. I have more engery, I don't have mid day crashes, my skin is really clear, and I'm down ten pounds. Much better. I'm on a roll.

Go Colts.

I plan on making buffalo chicken wing dip--it's amazing--and I plan on parking myself in front of a wide and tall TV on Sunday to watch commercials, sprinkled with football. Oh, wait, I meant... No, I didn't. I have a vested interested in seeing the Colts win (no, not gambling), so I will be watching and cheering.

My mom's out of surgery now. So is Vor's mom. They had surgery on the same day--ironic, no? So, happy, healing thoughts in their direction.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


It is possible the world will be short one 8 month old golden retriver by sunrise.


Dear Ellyce,

Just in time for almost a year after you died, they released results of what caused that airplane crash in my sister's backyard.

Pilot error. Pure, simple, unadulterated stupidity and inexperience. Right from the beginning, it was a mess. Maybe some more experienced, focused pilots could have pulled it off, even with the same conditions and mistakes. Experienced, focused pilots wouldn't have made the mistakes in the first place.

Everyone in my sister's family and her neighborhood stares up in the sky, stops everything they are doing, and holds their breath every time a plane flies overhead. You've left a lasting impression, not in the way you wanted.

I wish I couldn't take away the hurt. Your family, your friends. I wish I could take away the fear--my sister's my neices and nephews', their entire neighborhood. I wish they weren't so intertwined.

My sister is going to the crash site on the anniversary, and she says she will lay a rose there for you, one block from her house. I think she would have liked you.

Hate won't bring you back. Neither will sadness, investigations, screaming, praying. Love won't change a thing, either.