This is the Kind of Stuff that Happens When You’re My Grandchild

Kayla and I stopped at Dutch’s Mart on the way to school this morning. She wanted some donuts and milk. We walk in, she picks out her donuts, I get us both a container of milk and we go to the register.

Me: I guess I’m going to get milk for breakfast since you won’t let me get beer anymore.
Kayla: Beer for breakfast is bad, Nonna. You have to wait until at least 9.
Me: Okay.

Then I look up to hand the cashier my debit card and realize she looks horrified.

Me: Not really. I don’t even like beer.
Me: Seriously. I really don’t drink beer. Not even after 9 a.m.

I pay for our stuff and we go to the car.

Kayla: Did you notice she was looking at me, “Like do you need me to call 911 honey?”
Me: Yeah, some people just have no sense of humor.


Anger & Horror & Sadness

If you voted for Donald Trump, if you voted for a third party candidate, then you are at least partially to blame for what happened in Charlottesville yesterday. You have blood on your hands, and not overseas against some people you don’t know, but right here in the country that you claim to love.

You no longer get to call yourselves patriots, or christians, or whatever cloak it is that you wrap yourself in that makes you feel better about your racism, your selfishness, your hatred. You knew what he was and you voted for him and in doing so you voted for what he stands for. You voted for David Duke, and Steve Bannon, and Richard Spencer, and James Alex Fields, Jr.

Lt. H. Jay Cullen, Trooper Berke M. M. Bates, and a 32 year old woman who has not yet been identified are dead this morning because you couldn’t stomach Hillary Clinton, for whatever reasons you told yourself were worth voting for a racist imbecile. Two families are without their father, their son, their husband, their brother. Another family doesn’t know yet that they will never again see their daughter, their aunt, their sister, their friend. We have lost whatever these people would done, whoever they were, whatever they would have become. You did that, Trump voter. You took those three lights from the world.

What are you going to do about it?


I Play At Knitting

I am so frustrated tonight.

Work isn’t going well. The boss and I are usually on pretty much the same page, but lately he’s been bitchy and I’m really kind of over it…and him. I’m at that point where I’m seriously considering putting my resume out there and seeing what happens. Not as in “actively looking for a job” but just putting my resume in the hands of a few people at different firms and telling them to call me if there’s ever an opening.

Home is always difficult these days. I really and truly thought my child rearing days were over and that I’d get to just be Nonna. Now don’t misunderstand, I’m not complaining. I love these kiddos (my kiddos and my kiddos’ kiddos) more than I love my own life, but sometimes it is just so frustrating. Someone is always complaining, no one is ever saying thank you and I just can’t seem to get anything right. “The roast is dry. The kitchen was a mess. I don’t want to do laundry tonight.” Yeah? Welcome to my world, asswipes. (And this too shall pass since it always does, but right now? Frustrating.)

And knitting. You know, that thing I’m supposed to do to relax? Creative. Great fibers. Just for me? Yeah, well. Unless I’m trying to plan my next project and obsessing because “Oh…I like that yarn…can I afford it this week? No, probably not…I still need to register Kayla for before/after school care and pay for one more week of summer camp…” Frustrating!

And now that I’ve bitched and complained let me just try to look at the opposite side of my coins.

I love my job. Really, I do. And I love most of my clients. I like helping them through a tough time and seeing them come out okay on the other end.

I get to see two of my four grandchildren every single day. I get to see the other two once a week for dinner and they spend every other weekend with me. I get alternating holidays and one week with each kid in the summer and one week with both of them at the same time. I have joint custody with their maternal aunt. Their father, my son, died when Alexandra was 3 (she’s 14 now) and Kenny was barely a year old (he’s 11.5, apparently the .5 is really important). We get at least 3 calls a week from grandparents asking about grandparents’ rights. Virginia, and most states, doesn’t have any laws recognizing grandparents rights so we have to turn most of them away. It’s heartbreaking and always reminds how very lucky I am.

And knitting? Well, I do like it, but it’s not the be all-end all for me. And truth be told, I can afford that yarn. I’m just being a whiny baby and the Sus-thing where I don’t like to spend money on myself because, well, just because. Fifteen years of therapy didn’t help me figure that out, writing a blog certainly isn’t. It is what it is and I am who I am. I’ll buy it when I get frustrated enough.

Which will probably be about 4 hours from now.

Work Stuff

I love what I do for a living. When people ask what it is that I do, they get one of two answers, depending on my mood at the time.

If I’m feeling snarky, and lets be honest, I’m almost always feeling snarky, I tell them that I spend my days being mean to people for money.

If I’m feeling not-snarky, which isn’t very often, I explain that I’m a family law paralegal who specializes in contested divorces, and custody/visitation/support matters.

It’s my job to make the opposing party cry. I like my job. A lot. And I’m really good at it. And it’s not just me who says so.

I’ve developed a few rules over the last 25 or so years.

  1. ¬†Don’t piss off the paralegal. It’s the fastest way to get your file put on the bottom of the pile and left there for the foreseeable future.
  2. I’m not your friend. I’m not going to be your friend. I’m not going to accept your facebook friend request. I’m not going to give you my cell phone number. I’m not going to accept your linkdin request. We’re not going to hang out or have dinner or have drinks and I’m not ever, under any circumstances, going to sleep with you. Yes, I did it that one time but I believe in learning from my mistakes and you’re not ever going to be my 2nd mistake from the same garden. I get paid to do a job. End.of.story.

And honestly, all the other rules are simply an expansion on the above themes.

Oh, and these rules apply equally to attorneys. Those I work for, those I work with, and those in other firms. When you’re a supreme court justice give me a ring and we’ll talk shop. Until then, leave me the fuck alone.


I’m F.I.N.E.

I’m still not 100% how to go about this blogging thing this time around. It needs to be different because I’m different. However, it also needs to be the same because at the end of the day I’m still me. Fucked up, insecure, neurotic, emotional. That’s me. I was fine. I am fine. I will be fine.

Although I deleted The BiPolar Express many many years ago, probably close to 10 years ago, I did manage tonight to find some archived pages on the internet. Damn, I can write and shit.

My life is so different now than it was during the time on the archived pages. I was unemployed, depressed, my grandparents had just died, I was still trying to deal with Joshi’s death, and my Mom’s. The last archived post is in October 2009. I feel certain I deleted the blog shortly after that. Within 6 months my father would be diagnosed with his final illess and within 24 months he’d be gone, too.

Getting back on track has been a struggle but I think I’ve managed. Don’t misunderstand me. Life isn’t all sunshine and roses for me now. I don’t think I’m meant to have a sunshine and roses kind of life. But it’s different and it’s better. I’m happy with that.

So, what are the highlights of the last eight years? Well,

  1. I’ve gotten a job a love, with a firm in Fredericksburg, working with people I like. My fourth anniversary there will be in September.
  2. For all intents and purposes I have joint custody of Joshi’s kids. I have them every 3rd weekend, and quite a bit in the summer. Plus we have dinner once a week on the weeks that they’re not out here in the George with me. Alexandra and I are saving for a trip to Paris when she graduates from high school and Kenny and I are saving for a trip to Amsterdam.
  3. Peter, Nathan, and Kayla live with me in the little red house. It’s not red anymore, it’s grey now (new siding). Also a new roof, new windows, and other renovations on the drawing board.
  4. Bobbi is living in the Gs house, so she’s nearby and I love that. Arn is also close by and he visits when he can.
  5. Stella is still with me, healthy, happy, and bossy at the ripe old age of 9.5 years.

A job, family nearby, Stella, yeah, life is pretty good, except when it’s not. But we’re not focusing on that anymore, are we? Nope, we are not. Because we are F.I.N.E.


Giving It Another Go

You know, years ago I had a really popular blog called “The BiPolar Express” that I started after my bipolar diagnosis. And then my diagnosis was updated and changed and it seemed wrong to continue writing a blog about a disease I didn’t actually have. After writing it for 10 years I deleted it. Without printing it out. Just boom. And I do that sometimes. I make a decision and I do it and I don’t look back. For better or worse.

I honestly forgot about this blog. I’m going to try to do better about writing. I know it’s good for me, good for my heart, good for my soul. If only I was as good at following through on creating something as I am on destroying it.

Sorry, Not Sorry

I hate that phrase and yet, sometimes, it’s completely appropriate. What would be even more appropriate for my mood tonight is, “Sorry, don’t care.”

You see, people make the mistake of thinking that I need them, of thinking that I get lonely, that I miss the sound of someone else’s voice. And, for the most part, I don’t. I’m human, so occasional interaction is nice, but I’m an introvert with a full time job that involves talking to people all day so the idea of coming home and not talking to anyone about anything is actually kind of appealing to me.

In fact, when I lived alone for a short period of time, while the boys were busy having babies with girls that didn’t like me and Julie was already living in her group home, I would come home from work on Friday evening, put on my pajamas, and not do anything except watch tv, cook, knit, and walk the dogs until time to go back to work Monday morning. The dogs got really good at waiting to pee until the sun went down. What I wouldn’t give for a few weekends like that now that my house is full of little people again.

Anyway, to those of you who think that you’re hurting my feelings by excluding me from your lunches and parties and whatnot, yeah, I see what you’re doing, and yeah, a normal person might care, but me? ¬†Sorry, don’t care.