Wednesday, November 30, 2005


Well, I survived. I did get a written warning, about attendance and about complaints (of which I seem to be queen - I do fine for a few months, then get three or four at once). I think it sucks that any unexpected absence, even if you use your vacation time, counts as an "occurrence" - you can only have three in a rolling six-month period, and I have more than that. (I'm sorry my life doesn't lend itself to one-week planned vacations, but it doesn't and I can't help that.) If I use my vacation time when I'm sick or when my car blows up or my air conditioner goes out, it should just be a vacation day, and not some mark against me because it's an unplanned vacation day. (Reminds me of "unexcused" absences in school - and I wonder why I feel like a schoolchild instead of a professional sometimes?) K has said he'll help and take a good bit of the emergencies, like days when J is sick (thankfully these are not as frequent as they once were), and if I'm sick, unless I'm barfing up a lung, I'll just drag myself in to work. And tardiness - if I'm going to be late (i.e., I get stuck in traffic or I have to take J to the doctor unexpectedly when he wakes up with fever of 103 one morning) and call in, I can only do that six times in a rolling six-month period. Um, traffic? This is Dallas, you can't avoid it. Ugh. I'm just glad it's over. Stuff like that stresses me out big time.

Stress upon stress

My stepmom just called - my dad wants to come visit. !!! Now that may not seem like a big deal. But my dad has been to my house exactly twice since I've lived here, and only once since J was born. He and K are about like gasoline and a match, and they just don't need to be in the same space. On the one hand, I'm glad they're coming - my dad is my family, I hate that he's felt unwelcome in my house the past ten years, and I'm glad he feels like he can call (or my stepmom can call) and say he wants to come visit. On the other hand, in some ways my dad still makes me feel like I'm 12 years old. He's always been a bit of a perfectionist (OK, a lot of a perfectionist), and for so logn I felt like I didn't measure up. Add a fairly ferocious temper and the complete inability to censor thoughts before he said them, and you've got big-time stress. He's mellowed somewhat as he's gotten older, and my stepmom has been good for him, too. And he and I are trying to learn how to relate better to each other (my mother always ran interference while she was alive, so sometimes that's been a challenge). So on one level I can think to myself, "My house isn't spotless, if he doesn't like it he can help me clean it, I can only do what I can do." But on some deeper level, I'm scared to death that he'll come and blow up over the house, or the yard, or something (he's done that before - the great Labor Day fiasco of 1996, the first time he and my stepomom came to visit - that was ugliness), and that the visit will become a total disaster. It makes my stomach hurt to think about it, and I want to rush home and just clean, clean, clean, get everything as close to perfect as I can make it (which isn't very close most days).


Just a little black rain cloud

That's what I feel like. I feel like I'm always mopey and sad and upset and pitiful, and I hate it. And yet, the trend continues. Remember the stress I had over that day I was late to work because of my car? I thought maybe the brief conversation I'd had with my manager would be the end of it. Nope - I have an official attendance/performance review with him this afternoon at 1:00. This SUCKS. I hate feeling inadequate and incompetent at the place where I spend most of my waking hours (to the exclusion of time with my family). I've never had problems like this at any other job I've had. So is the problem suddenly with me or is it with this job? I don't know. All I know is, I'm tired of crap happening to me. Can I have one month, one week, that's crap-free? Is that too much to ask?

And my stinkin' bank account was overdrawn AGAIN. I'm also sick of not making enough to be able to take care of my business. My shower desperately needs to be fixed - the leak is hot water, which means it's running up my electric bill and my water bill. But what, I'm going to roll pennies to pay a plumber? I'd try to do it myself, but I'd be afraid I'd screw it up more and make it even more expensive to fix. I need new curtains or shutters or something for the front rooms in the house. I have outside light fixtures that need to be repaired. I have so many things that need attention, it just makes my head hurt. But I don't even make enough to pay my bills and buy the things J and I need, much less do I make enough to have any repairs done that aren't essential. This sucks. This job that pays me not enough is making me feel inadequate and incompetent and stupid, and is also giving me major financial stress - hmm, perhaps this is telling me something.

I'd better work. I have my meeting at 1:00. I feel like throwing up.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005


Either my child has a very overactive imagination, or my house runneth over with ghostly visitors. He's taken to waking up every night - "Mama, there's a ghost in my room, come lay down with me." Last night he woke up three times, at 4:30, 5:00 and 5:30. He slept just long enough each time for me to get back in bed and get settled. After I finally got him back to sleep after the 5:30 wake-up call, it was time to get up and get dressed. I didn't even get to hit snooze on my alarm this morning. Oh, the unfairness of it all. And I'm so tired I'm just about cross-eyed.

I'm working on cleaning my house. It's a slow process, and I'm not even doing all of the deep-down thorough cleaning I want to do. I'm throwing out some, and things I need to deal with but can't take time to deal with right now, I'm putting in the study. K sort of makes fun of my cleaning process - I tend to clean small chunks (usually something no one sees, like the pantry or the cabinet under my bathroom sink) first, so that I have a feeling of having accomplished something, of having one tiny oasis of cleanliness in a wasteland of mess. He thinks I'd be better served cleaning the places people see first and leaving everything else until later. I agree somewhat, but I think that cleaning the bits people see first (and shoving all the junk from those bits into closets and drawers and cabinets) is part of the reason I have such an accumulation of crap to go through and toss now. But I keep slogging away - one day it will all be clean and organized, right?

K's family is coming this way tonight for their monthly follow-up visit with the doctor (this is the chunk of family that stayed up here following Hurricane Katrina). They've opted to stay at a hotel this time. Not sure why (well, yeah, I am - they feel like they're imposing, even though no one has ever told them they are), but they are. So I'm not sure how much we'll see them this visit.

I now have plans for Friday as well as for Saturday. My college roommate lives in the area, and she won a party at a local food and beverage establishment for Friday night. So she invited me to come hang out. Should be fun! I won't stay out too late, though - my massage is at 8:30 Saturday morning, and of course I don't want to be late for that.

I sure hope J didn't take a big nap at daycare today. Tonight would be a good time for him to fall asleep while eating dinner, so he'd go to bed early. I'm fried, and if I can't figure out how to help put an end to these middle-of-the-night wake-up calls, I'm going to just fall over from exhaustion. Up until 10:00 last night, awake three times - that doesn't equal a very good night's rest for mama.

Monday, November 28, 2005


Today wasn't quite so bad at work as I'd anticipated. Traffic wasn't even terrible. I expect the traffic, at least, will be back to normal tomorrow. Blech.

I talked to Brian tonight. We talked for about an hour and a half again. I find myself wondering, do I like him so much that I'm this goofy? Have I been so long without male attention that it's the attention I like more than the person? I know it's waaaaaaaaaay early yet, but still, I think of these things. I also know I'm not *even* looking for anything serious at this point. But if I found something serious (or if it found me), would I turn it down simply because of the timing? Here I am, a grown woman going on 40, and I feel like a giddy teenager. Scratch that, I feel *worse* than a giddy teenager - I don't think I ever felt like this during my teenage years! Suffice it to say I'm looking forward to Saturday.

I'd better get some sleep - I just wanted to post a little bit so y'all wouldn't think I'd run off and joined the circus. More later when I'm not so tired.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Black Friday

Isn't that what they call the big shopping free-for-all after Thanksgiving? I'm not there because I'm at work. No, scratch that - I'm at work, but even if I wasn't, I wouldn't set foot in a mall or a Toys R Us today for love or money. I don't care if they're giving stuff away, there's nothing I need or want so badly that I have to wade through crowds or start camping out at 4 in the morning to get it. I heard on the radio this morning that there was nearly a riot at Wal-Mart when they ran out of $350 laptop computers. Great deal? Sure. Worth risking life and limb for? Hardly. So even if I wasn't sitting at my desk along with about ten other people in all of downtown Dallas, I wouldn't be doing any shopping.

Happy Thanksgiving! I was sick. Oh, joy. I went to the doc on Wednesday afternoon, because I felt a sinus infection coming on. She gave me some medicine (including some lovely Augmentin pills that have to be as big as a coffee cup - I've got to cut the damn things in half to swallow them). But yesterday I felt worse, not better. It felt almost like a mild case of the flu - I had a low-grade fever off and on, and my whole body hurt. Not as much as it did when I had the flu (then I just wanted to lay down and die, I felt so bad!), but enough to make me fairly grumpy. And I was sooooooooo tired. It was almost more effort than I had the energy for to hold my head up. Thankfully J did me the favor of passing out by 8:30 - he fell asleep with the light on, with a book next to him, so I know he was tired, too.

And now I'm at work. Daycare is closed, so K took the day off and is staying home with J. After last week's car fiasco, I didn't dare ask for time off. Besides, even without the car fiasco, I'm sure I'd have been turned down - on our team, seven of twelve people are out, and the general rule is that no more than half can be out at any one time. Not sure how that seventh one slipped in, but I'm sure I'd have been told, no, sorry, you can't take that day off.

I am SO not in the mood to be here. I got here at 7:30 (amazing how early I can get here when I don't have to spend 20 minutes at daycare prying my son off my leg), and the day is d-r-a-g-g-i-n-g. It's only 10:30, but it feels like it should be at least 1:00. I forgot to pack a lunch, and realized halfway here that it's highly unlikely that anything will be open for me to buy lunch. Suck. So I may be eating Halloween candy for lunch. Right now, the thought of that much sugar kind of turns my stomach. I do have a protein shake in the fridge, so I won't starve, but that's just not as good as chili would be.

At least today I don't feel like I want to lay down and sleep for three days, like I did yesterday. I'm not 100%, but I'm better.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Is it time to go yet?

Here again, I just haven't felt like I've had much to write about lately.

So far, the poo-poo hasn't hit the fan at the office. My manager came by my cube on Monday and said he'd be drawing up some paperwork, that we'd talk about it later, so I figured I'd be written up for something. He hasn't mentioned it again, though, and I'm not going to stir the pot by bringing it up.

I'm tired. J has been up for some portion of every night this week, I think. This morning he woke up at 3:00, was up until 3:30. Ugh. He's pretty congested, so I'm sure that isn't helping.

I'm also feeling a sinus infection coming on. My throat hurts, and my right ear hurts, and that's how it starts. We get off work at 2:00 today, and I have an appointment with my doc at 3:00. I'm going to have plans next weekend (with Brian, the guy I went to the Baylor-Texas game with), and I don't want them crapped up with sickies!

No big plans for turkey day here. I'm not traveling, family isn't coming here, and I'm hoping it's just going to be low-key (well, other than cleaning my house). We're having Chinese takeout - K doesn't like holiday food much, J may or may not eat as the mood strikes him, so why make all that food when it's likely that I'd be the only one eating it?! Egg rolls and cashew chicken it is. Makes me think of the movie A Christmas Story - "no, no, no, no, sing 'fa la la la la'."

Only an hour left in the workday - I think I can make it, I think I can....

Happy Thanksgiving, y'all!

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Sic 'em Bears!!!

Baylor beat Oklahoma State today, 44-34. This means Baylor ends the season at 5-6, the most wins they've had in who remembers when (if not quite a winning season), and that for the first time ever, Baylor has beaten two Big XII opponents in a season. WOO!!!!!! Baby steps, sure, but I think things are looking up for the Bears.

What is the deal?!

Remember that church I've been getting unsolicited telephone calls from? The one I've asked three times to take me off their calling list? The most recent request being made just last week? Well, I'll be damned if today I don't get ANOTHER call from them. This one, a different phone number showed up on my caller ID. I've asked them three times to stop calling me, I'm sick of messing with it. I just sent in an online complaint to the attorney general's office. Enough already. I'm also sending them a nasty letter via certified mail. If they're trying to drum up membership, it seems like annoying people who don't want to be called and have told them so is a really poor way to go about it.

Friday, November 18, 2005

And the hits just keep on comin'

Yesterday I took a sick day - J had one of his periodic up-half-the-night-for-no-apparent-reason spells, I got about two hours of sleep, and I didn't trust myself to drive in to work without falling asleep at the wheel.

Today is my late day (I'm at work now), and I thought I'd do something useful with my couple of extra hours before I had to be here at 10 - I decided to get to Sears when the auto center opened and have my brakes done. I figured it would be an easy thing, an hour and a half tops, and I'd be on my way in plenty of time to get to work by 10. Ha, HA. Turns out I needed a hub bearing replaced on one side of my car - if I were to leave it and keep driving, the wheel could either just lock up or come off if the bearing were to go completely out. Neither of those sounded like particularly good options, so I told them to change it and called work to let them know I'd be a little late coming in. So - what time did I finally get to work? 4:30. Yep, I was waiting on my car for EIGHT HOURS. I have no idea what took so long, and I don't think they expected it to take that long. My cell phone battery had died while I was there, and when I plugged it in in the car, I had three voice mails. One was from K, two were from my manager - asking me to come see him when I got in, yes, I would need to work my late shift tonight, and that we'd have a discussion on Monday. I don't know about you, but a "discussion" with your manager always sounds ominous. So I had a flaming meltdown in my car - I cried until snot ran out my nose. J was up during the night again last night, he screamed when I left him at daycare this morning, I was hideously late to work due to events out of my control (can't exactly take the car and leave when the wheels are off of it), I'd just spent $700+ repairing something I didn't even realize was in need of repair, and now I was in the doghouse at work and my manager wanted to have a "discussion". It was just too much. I wanted to lay in the floor and cry for three days, and of course he was already gone when I got here. So I thought I'd have to stew all weekend.

Bless my team leader - she saw that I was upset, we talked for a while, and she gave me my manager's home number and told me to call him. She said it was upsetting me so much, she wanted me to call so I wouldn't stress all weekend. So I did. I think part of the problem was that my manager didn't realize today was my late shift. He asked had I been planning to be in by 10, and I said absolutely, I had no idea things would play out as they did. I think he appreciated that I went ahead and came in for my late night. I asked if I was in lose-my-job trouble, and he said no, that I was in the doghouse, but it was a manageable doghouse. So that's made me feel a little bit better. But still, overall, today has just sucked major ass.

When I'm done here, I'm going home, heating up some stir-fry, putting on my warm fuzzy jammies, fixing myself a HUGE margarita, putting some Eddie Izzard and Denis Leary on the DVD player, and laughing myself stupid. And if I feel the need, I'll probably have chocolate in some form, too. Hopefully all that will be balm for the wounded spirit, because right now I feel like I've been beaten with very large sticks.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Feeling better

I'm somewhat recovered from my earlier wallow in the pity pit. Funny how a chocolate chip cookie can make almost anything seem a little better! :-)

And whatever I said earlier, I don't mean to bag on K. He is a good friend, and he is a good dad to J. And if he's got some difficulty coping with things sometimes, maybe part of that is due to his personality, and maybe part of it is due to the fact that I was such a huge control freak during most of our marriage (although I wasn't even really aware I was doing it, I did tend to take over most everything because I wanted it done my way). I think we've done a fair job of keeping things amicable, and I think we can continue to do that - after all that's been said and done, I can't imagine what could come up that would suddenly make us want to spit and hiss at each other on sight. I just need to learn to stand up for myself when it comes to having that little bit of time for myself, and he needs to learn that there's not much absolutely right or wrong in how J is raised, and that he can cope with things even if he isn't sure he can (or, that he's more capable than he thinks - I guess self-confidence would be the right term).

I'm just having the hardest time focusing at work! I feel like I do with J, having to constantly remind myself to stay on task. But it's just a pure effort, and it's making me tired.

And I still have to figure out what the hell to do about Cingular. I guess I'll suck up and call and see if they can work out some payment arrangement with me - I can't come up with $500 right now for the life of me. If not, what will they do? Sue? And attach what under a judgment? No liquid assets to speak of, no court would make me give up my only personal vehicle (and thus my means of getting to work), the house is mortgaged (and there again, I don't think any court would make me sell my home for a $500 unsecured debt). As far as I can tell, I'm pretty much judgment-proof. I just hate having to deal with nasty debt collection people. I thought that was over after I filed bankruptcy, dammit.

On the bright side: the wife of one of my co-workers wants to buy some of my bears that I'm wanting to part with! So far I'll be making about $100 on the ones she wants so far. If I sell some on eBay, I may make even more - I've realized going through my collection that I have a lot of nice pieces, collectors' pieces, limited editions.

And I'm going to get my brakes looked at and probably redone on Friday morning. It's my late night, so I don't have to be here until 10:00. I'm going to do my best to get up early, wrangle J to school early, and be at Sears when the automotive department opens at 8:00. I just hope they've got a Starbucks somewhere close by. But I'll feel better when the brakes are fixed - they aren't squealing or scraping yet, they just feel not quite as stable as they used to. Next to work on: new shocks and a new battery. And lots of prayers that nothing else major goes wrong!

Only 40 more minutes - I think I can, I think I can....

I need a wife

No, seriously. I need someone who can help me with the cooking and cleaning and laundry, who can help get J ready as I try to take the trash out in the morning or get him dressed while I'm getting ready, just someone who can be there and help with things and be a partner. It's hard work trying to do everything on my own, and today it's just getting to me.

Today everything is getting to me. More than once in the last couple of days, I've found myself on the verge of tears for no apparent reason. I just know there's got to be something better to life than this. I know life isn't sunshine and roses all the time, and that a lot of it is going to be just mundane stuff - I don't expect it to be one burst of excitement after another, all the time. But it can't be *all* stress over money, stress at work, stress from butting heads with my strong-willed son, can it? Surely it's not too much to hope for/expect a life where not everything in it stresses me out. Is it too much to hope for work I find rewarding? Is it too much to hope for enough income to take care of me and J? Is it too much to hope for someone (other than my son) who loves me and wants to spend time with me and cherishes me and lets me know it? Right now it just feels like every major area of my life - finances, work, relationships, even parenting - just sucks, and it's depressing. My house is a pit, but when I get home of an evening, I can't seem to dredge up the energy to do anything much about it - not enough to get it closer to looking good, at least. I worry about J, worry that I don't spend enough time with him, don't give him enough attention when we're home, worry that he'll have emotional and psychological scars because K and I split up. After he went to sleep last night, I sat there and watched him sleep, and I cried.

And money. Does it never end?! I filed bankruptcy last April, thought I'd taken care of all my unsecured debt through that, including an astronomical bill that Cingular Wireless said we owed (no way did we run up the bill they said we had, I know for a fact there was something screwy with the call timers on K's phone on at least two occasions, and I think we were overcharged, although Cingular would never admit it). I thought that was that. Well, Cingular started calling over some balance I allegedly owed. Um, no, that was taken care of in the bankruptcy. I referred it to the attorney who'd handled my bankruptcy, she wrote them a letter telling them to bug off, it was covered in the bankruptcy, and I thought that was that. Now they're back with a collection agency, again trying to collect this balance. They're saying I owe an additional $500+, and I have to either pay or make settlement arrangements by tomorrow. Pay with what?! I have nothing in my savings account, about $40 in one checking account, and the money in my other checking account is already spoken for. I have nothing in my 401(k) to borrow against or withdraw. I might can get a few dollars from the pennies I have in my change jar. So now I'm going to have to suck up and call them. I hate Cingular. If theirs was the only wireless service available, I wouldn't have a cell phone. But this is a perfect example - I filed bankruptcy, tried to clear up my business, and yet it keeps coming back to bite me in the ass. I am sick and tired of that, sick and tired of unpleasant surprises, sick and tired of stressing and worrying and wondering how the hell I'll afford the next crisis that comes along. I haven't seen my lap-band surgeon in over a year - forget paying for a fill, I don't have an extra $50 right now to make the co-pay for the office visit. I'm just SICK of it. When do things get better, and how can I help them get better? And once I figure out how to help things get better, how do I muster up the energy to do it?

This is K's weekend with J, and I am so looking forward to the break. But I'm a bit concerned, because last weekend K told me he couldn't handle Little Gym by himself. J is a bit of a nonconformist, and it bothers K a great deal that he's the only parent not sitting in the circle for the group activity - J infinitely prefers to do his own thing. I'm not sure why that's such a big deal - the instructor doesn't make a big deal about the kids sticking strictly to routine at this age, and I'm not sure why it bothers K so much unless he just hates feeling out of control of J (what's to control, let him run until he drops) or he worries that other parents there are thinking he's out of control of J (hey, they've all got kids - even if their kids are perfect angels when we see them, you know they've all had moments where their children were so hideous that they wished the floor would open up and swallow them whole! LOL). But he's said it does bother him and he just can't do it by himself. So I'm guessing that means he wants me to go to Little Gym with him and J on my off weekends. I don't mind going to Little Gym, per se - it's fun, and J has a blast if he's not so tired that he can barely function (this is what happened last week, J just wanted to lay on the mat - now that's a rare occurrence!). But my concerns with going every week are 1) if I do, I'll never have a truly free weekend, where I can sleep as late as I want, get up and do whatever I want, without having to worry that I have an obligation to make, and 2) I run the very real risk that, if I go to Little Gym on my off weekends, J will see me and throw an unholy fit to go back to the big house with mama afterward. That would mean I'd have gotten exactly one night to myself, most of which would have been spent sleeping. That hardly seems fair. Maybe I'm just a heartless bitch, but I don't think so - I need those breaks, I know I function better and deal with J's fits better when I've had some time to myself. That weekend I went to the Baylor game, that was the first truly free weekend I've had in I don't know when. I need more time like that, not less, and I'm afraid less is what I'll get if I go to Little Gym every weekend. So that's another thing I'm stressed out about.

Now I've read back over what I wrote and thoroughly depressed myself. I guess I'd better stop before I start crying at my desk. Time to work, woo.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Fidget fidget, squirm squirm

I am having such a hard time focusing at work. I need to get over this and get some things accomplished.

Tomorrow it's really back to the grind. Our team manager has been out on paternity leave for the last three weeks. Regardless of how stressful work might be, or how well you get on with your manager, it just seems to automatically be a little less stressful if the boss is out of the office. But he'll be back tomorrow, so I'd better shake this fidgety fit fast.

And I swear, if we have one more meeting or training or extra thing scheduled, my head may just explode. We've already got training this week on a software upgrade that's coming out. Today we get an e-mail about a training session we're to attend this week - we can pick what day we want, today, tomorrow or Thursday. Um, if the first session to choose from is today, why are we just now hearing about it *today*?

I forgot to mention this when it happened. I talked to K's mom last Friday when I was off - I wanted to let her know I'd found my dryer and that it would be delivered on Saturday. I don't recall exactly how the conversation took this turn, but we were talking about K's birthday. I'd told her earlier that he wanted a washer and dryer and she'd said no, they weren't getting that, because they hoped he'd be moving back home soon. Anyway, while we were talking on Friday, she said she'd sent a check to the post office box for Kevin's birthday, she'd decided to go with a check so that K could do whatever he wanted to with it, even start a washer and dryer fund, although they'd hoped the separation would be a short-term thing. I could tell from the sound of her voice that 1) she was upset and 2) she desperately wanted me to say, "Oh, it will, it's just a short-term thing, he'll be moving home soon." I couldn't do it. I couldn't sit there and give her false hope, say anything to encourage her to think this separation will be resolved in any way other than divorce, and I hated it. I'm sorry K's parents are taking this so hard, but I'm not going to tell them what they want to hear just to make them feel better - that will only hurt them more in the end. So what did I do? I changed the subject.

It's almost time for yet another meeting, I'll write more later.

Monday, November 14, 2005

Back to work

Both the swingset and dryer were delivered without incident on Saturday. It is sooooooooo nice to have a dryer that doesn't take two hours to dry a load of clothes! The swingset is a big box o' lumber and parts and looks rather intimidating. But we'll find some way to get it put together.

Since I was waiting on deliveries, K took J to Little Gym, although it was actually my weekend. He called about 10:20, asking if I was planning on coming there. I said no, I was (at that point) on my way to the bank and the post office, and I wasn't really dressed for Little Gym. I said I'd come if he needed me, though, and he said no, never mind, it was OK. Well, you don't call me and sound like that and then expect me just to leave it, so I called back in a couple of minutes. At that point K said they were just going to come home. J was so tired, he just wasn't in the mood to be there. K said all he wanted to do was lay on the mat, and that's very out of character for J. So they came home early - a first in J's time at Little Gym. We'd planned on going to dinner for K's birthday, but I said that if J wasn't in the mood for Little Gym then (mid-morning), he wasn't likely to be in a mood for dinner later in the day. So we thought, OK, lunch. K asked J if he wanted to go to lunch with mama and daddy. J's response? "No, I just want to stay home." So we picked up lunch from Whataburger instead. Not exactly the birthday dinner K had hoped for! We'll catch it some other time, though. Maybe when we do, I'll actually have money and can treat instead of making him pay for his own birthday dinner.

J *was* tired - he passed out around 8:30 Saturday night, which is pretty early for him. I decided perhaps early bedtime would be in order for me as well, and I was asleep by 9:30. (Woo, the glamorous life of the single woman - asleep by 9:30 on a big Saturday night!) Around midnight my cell phone rang. It was K. He'd treated himself to a run to the liquor store for his birthday, and at the time he'd asked me in what order to drink - I'd told him beer then liquor, never sicker, liquor then beer, never fear. Well, guess what? He said I was going to laugh at him - he was sick. Of course I didn't laugh. I asked him what he'd drank, and it really wasn't a lot. He said he'd stopped drinking around 10 PM, and gotten sick around midnight. I said I wasn't sure it was from the drinking, as he hadn't had all that much (and the few times I've been sick from drinking, it's been after an all-night party usually involving Everclear in some form, and lots of it). He said he didn't know, he just felt awful. We talked for a bit and then got off the phone, and I went back to sleep. J was up at his usual 6:30 or so, so I was awake when the phone rang at about 8:15. It was K. I was surprised, I'd expected him to sleep late since I knew he'd been up part of the night not feeling good. He felt worse then. He sounded terrible, and said he'd been up around 4:30, sick again. I told him it sure didn't sound like it was from the alcohol, usually with that you're good and sick once and that's it. I suspect it was the hamburger he got at Jack in the Box, although I have no proof of that. Anyway, I told him J and I would pick up some medicine and crackers and Sprite and be over in a bit.

So I asked J if he wanted to go to the store to get some medicine for daddy. He said, "And a truck for me?" LOLOL Stinker. (He ended up getting a little Buzz Lightyear, which I don't think he's put down since it came out of the package.) We picked up a few things and went to K's apartment. Bless his heart, you could tell he felt not so hot. When we got there, he ate some crackers and drank a little Sprite. J watched TV and played with his Buzz Lightyear while I tried to fix K's DSL (turns out it was hooked up with an Ethernet cable instead of USB, and the USB cable was nowhere to be found, so that's something he needs before I can hook that up for him), and before we left, K was feeling a bit better. Then J started hollering that he was ready to go back to the big house, so off we went.

And yesterday evening J was just grumpy. I knew he was tired - he fell asleep in the car on the way back from K's, and that very seldom happens anymore. He grumped and fussed until he finally went to sleep around 9:00. After he went to sleep, I started to upload some pictures from the digital camera to my online album. With my dial-up, it takes forever, so I got on a cleaning binge while I waited. I cleaned out my bathroom cabinets under the sinks and cleaned off the counter. It positively gleamed when I was finished. Ah, a tiny oasis of cleanliness in a sea of chaos. My whole house should be so clean, or even close. (J saw it this morning and said, "Mama, you put all those (things I had on the counter) away?! Now I have space!" LOLOL) So I tossed, and wiped, and scrubbed, and polished, and finally the pictures finished uploading. I copied a few songs from some of K's CDs that are still at the house, and went to bed around 12:30.

I'd *just* turned off the light when I heard a big CRASH, BANG!!! I thought J had fallen out of bed and hit his nightstand or something. It sounded almost like the slats had fallen out from under his mattress - the thing is, though, that they aren't under the mattress right now because I got tired of them falling out. They're propped up against a wall. Strangely, I wasn't scared, more curious than anything else. I checked on J first - he was still in bed, snoring. ??? Everything in his room was just as it had been. I went through the house one room at a time, turning on lights, looking in closets (not like there's room for anyone to hide in any of them), looking under tables. I couldn't find anything, anywhere in the house, that was in a spot different than where it had been. ??? I looked outside - nothing. ??? I stayed up until almost 2:00 making sure nothing seemed to be out of the ordinary, and then I finally gave up and went to sleep. I still have no idea what caused that noise. If it's my brother stopping by to visit and making his presence known, he needs to do that at some time when I'm not trying to go to sleep!

Friday, November 11, 2005

A good day

Tomorrow will be a big, busy day. The swingset for J's big Christmas is coming tomorrow, and so is my new dryer!!! I picked one out today at Lowe's. It's a Whirlpool, and not the one with *all* the bells and whistles, but it's pretty nice. I'm happy with it. I am so looking forward to the new dryer, I'm saving all my laundry until tomorrow. Finally, I'll be able to dry clothes in one cycle instead of three.

My massage was great this morning. Really, extra-specially great - there was some kind of mix-up, I didn't get the massage I thought I'd signed up for, so today's was FREE and I'm going back the first Saturday in December to use my gift certificate! How great is that?! So, if anyone in the Dallas/Fort Worth area is reading this - if you want a spa day, go to Daireds in Arlington. It might be a bit of a drive for some, but it's worth it. The customer service is fabulous.

Then I went to Bath Junkie and bought a boatload of bath goodies. I had a $75 gift certificate - I spent $74.42 and got 58 cents back, how's that for figuring it just right? I love, love, love their salt scrub. I think it's my favorite Bath Junkie thing. Now I should have enough smell-good stuff, between this and stuff I already have, to hold me until my birthday.

Then I picked up a few things at Target and came on home. I didn't nap - instead, I've spent my afternoon playing the piano (something I seldom get to do with the boy underfoot), and finally starting to go through my vast bear collection to see how best to weed it out. I've got three piles - the pile to sell, the pile to donate, and the pile to keep. If I can sell all the ones I want to, that should be a nice little chunk of change. John's wife collects bears, so I'm giving her first dibs. The ones she's not interested in, I'll list on different boards I'm on or on eBay.

So it's been a good day! I got an e-mail from Brian this afternoon - that makes me happy. He really needs to get Internet service hooked up at home. I've told him that, and he agrees. I'll have to tell him he may start getting demerits for each day it's not taken care of. LOL

I'd better get off of here - I'm going to surprise J and pick him up early. More later!

Thursday, November 10, 2005

And lest I forget...

I'm 2 hours late in wishing myself a happy one year of blogging! My first post was November 10, 2004. I can't believe I've been blathering on for a whole year. If you're so inclined, no presents, just send cash. LOLOLOL

"I'm not dead yet..."

I just haven't felt like I've had a whole lot to write about! Tomorrow (today - eesh, it's insanely late) is my mental health day. Work is closed, daycare is open, and mama's off to the spa! I'll write more later - right now, I'd better get a little sleep. It would never do to be late for my massage!

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

A bit better

Well, my review wasn't the disaster I was anticipating/dreading. Yeah, I took some lumps, and there's room for improvement, but overall it wasn't horrible. I still have a job, anyway. :-)

I did find out that one of my co-workers (who's been here a shorter time than I have) gave her two-week notice during her review this morning.

Talked to Brian last night - he called. :-) We talked as well as can be done with a three-year-old in the background. LOL He said he'd expected I might have my hands full, though, so it wasn't a big deal. Good news - he has a job interview in this part of the world on Thursday of next week! That would be cool, if he got a job up here. Should we continue to see each other (which seems to be a possibility right now), that would certainly make the logistics more manageable.

After putting all that worry into my review, I'm just drained now that it's over. I'm finding it very hard to focus on much at the moment. I'm really glad we have Friday off - I've got plans. A massage at 9:00, shopping for a new dryer afterward, then going to Bath Junkie and spending my remaining gift certificate on bath goodies - then maybe a nap after that. Sounds like a good day to me, I wish it was then right now!

Monday, November 07, 2005

An attitude I'd like to cultivate

I came across this post as I was zipping through the blogosphere. And I thought, why can't I ever feel like that? Why can't I believe that my life is as it should be? Why do I feel like I'm always falling short, like I'm barely making it from one day to the next, like I never have enough to meet my needs? Why can't I trust that it *will* all turn out OK? When did I pick up this pessimistic/negative streak, and how the hell do I get rid of it, at least once in a while?

I'd toyed with the idea of just staying up all night tonight - that way I'd be too tired to much care what's said at my review tomorrow. Logically, though, I know that's stupid - after all, I do still have to drive to and from work. I just hope the review isn't as bad as I'm anticipating/dreading it will be. In ten hours, it should all be over but the shouting, so at least I don't have to anticipate/dread it much longer. In ten hours I can start recovering from whatever beating I've gotten.

But now, I must sleep. I should have gone to bed two hours ago.

Yesterday I was happy

Today I am not. As soon as I got to work, the crap came crashing down around my ears. My quarterly review is tomorrow. One of the big issues at my last review was complaints. I'd done pretty well on staying on top of things - until recently. I had about two or three come in in the last couple of weeks, and my manager's e-mail has said we'll discuss this at the review. I'm just sick. There goes any chance for a bonus or raise next year, I'm sure. And dammit, I'm human. I try to stay on top of things, I really do. But sometimes things get past - unfortunately for me, the ones that slip past are usually the ones that come back and make a really big noise about it. But I'm just tired of feeling incompetent, because I do. How can I be perfect, though? Maybe I'm just not cut out for this job. All I know is, I feel like crap right now. I want to cry and kick something, and I can't do either.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Update on Saturday

Well, let's see - I left my house at 8:30 yesterday morning, got home at 12:30 last night - even allowing for an hour and a half of driving each way, that still gives me a 13-hour date. So - do y'all think I had a good time?

It was a really, really fun day. I loved being back at a Baylor game - I've missed that. Now the outcome of the game? Well, that royally sucked ass. It was like the old Baylor team of two and three years ago - the one that couldn't find its collective butt with both hands - showed up. Final score: UT 69, Baylor 0. UGH. We kept joking that it could be worse, UT could have made that first extra point attempt that they missed and it would have been 70 to 0. There were some really bad calls made, and some calls on fairly egregious penalties that should have been made and weren't, but the Bears just didn't have their hearts in it. Not sure why - if we'd lost (even badly) but gone down fighting, that wouldn't have been as bad. This, though, was just painful. I loved being at the game with Brian, though - he's not one to just sit and watch, he gets as into it as much as I do, if not more so. He was in the band at Baylor, so we had to be there early enough to catch the drum corps warm-up - I love that, I'd have been a percussionist in band had I really known how to play anything other than the piano. There aren't enough words to describe how much fun that was for me. And to just be spending time with someone else who went to Baylor, and who loves it as much as I do - that was cool. (K has been to the occasional game, but I think he went just to humor me - sports aren't his favorite thing. And that's not a bad thing, it's just how it is.) So the outcome blew big chunks, but being there was lots of fun. He'd And we stayed until the bitter end so we could sing the Baylor Line. That's what you should do at a game - no leaving just because things get stinky for your team. It's funny, I never realized that possibly dating someone who went to Baylor might be important - I never thought it much mattered, and I guess in the grand scheme of things, it doesn't. But Baylor was a big part of my life, and it was nice to spend time with someone who's had a similar experience.

After the game we went to grab a bite to eat, and then we thought we might go see a movie. The movie didn't start until 6:45, so we drove around campus and he showed me all the things that had changed at Baylor since I'd been there last. I was amazed at all the changes. They've now got a really cool museum complex that I'd love to take J to see sometime - it's new, and has a discovery center that allows for lots of hands-on experiences.

Then we went to see a movie - we saw The Weather Man with Nicolas Cage. GOOD movie!!! And of course, having a cute guy to hold hands with makes it that much more fun. :-D After the movie, we saw a few more of the new things in Waco that had gone up since I'd been down there, and then we went for coffee and dessert. And we talked and talked and talked some more, and stayed until the restaurant was closing and the staff was giving us the skunk eye for not getting out. After that, we figured our only two choices were either doing things better not done on a first date, or him driving me back to my car, giving me a hug and a kiss, and sending me home. I chose option B - I told him he couldn't expect all the good stuff on a first date, that he'd have to work a bit harder than that. LOL So we drove back to where I'd parked my car, sat in the parking lot and talked (seriously - that's all) for another 20 or 30 minutes, and then we had a hug (a big, long, squishy hug - he's a good hugger!) and a kiss (just a little one), and I headed back home. I sang all the way here. He said he'll call me Monday.

And he was cool about me letting K know I was OK - he said he always gives his ex (with whom he is still good friends - like K and I, they just didn't need to be married) information on where he's going and who he'll be with, in the interest of safety, because there are lots of nuts out there. He and I agreed that it's good that we can do that with our exes, and he had no problem with it. So that's a point in his favor. If he'd have had a conniption because there was someone concerned for my well-being, and that someone happened to be K, well, that would have been the end of that. K and I will always be friends, and we'll always be in touch with each other, so if someone can't handle that, then he's not the someone for me.

So it was a good, good day.

And a funny - Brian showed me the fortune he'd gotten from a fortune cookie earlier this week. It said, "A new romance is about to enter your life. Follow your first impulse." Too funny.

Now I must clean house. K hasn't brought J back yet, so if there's anything I'd hoped to do while J was out, I'd better hop to it - I expect they'll be here any time now.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Friday, Friday!!!

I'm in an almost unreasonably good mood, in spite of the fact that my day started off fairly crappy. I was trying to get J out the door, and I was packing his things as I went. I grabbed a few of his trains to put in his suitcase, and stuck them in my pocket to get them out the door. I checked my pockets as I was herding J out the door - I felt a lump there and thought, "Oh, good, I have my keys." I got J out, turned on the security system, locked the door and pulled it shut behind me. I got him settled in his seat with his Pop-Tart, and started divesting myself of all the stuff I was carrying - coffee, CD I burned last night (good road trip music for tomorrow), leftover Halloween candy to share with co-workers, trains, etc. As I got hands free, I patted one pocket - there's my phone, like it is every morning. Patted the other pocket - hmm, nothing there. Did I put my keys in my seat? Noooo. Hmm. Did I put them on the floor by J's seat? Noooo. Hmm. And then it dawned on me that I'd LEFT MY KEYS IN THE HOUSE. Behind the locked door. With no spare where I could get to it. I called K, since he still has a key (this is one big advantage to getting along well with your ex!), and thankfully he wasn't so far away that he couldn't turn around and come let me in. So I was late, but I don't care - tomorrow is Saturday, and I have a date!

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Good hair

I must do a good job covering the gray bits in my hair. My hair is naturally dark brown with a substantial portion of gray in it, and I'm far too young to have that much gray hair, so L'Oreal and I have become good friends. I always wanted red hair as a child, so I've taken to coloring my hair a deep auburn shade. I just touched it up not too long ago, and I've gotten two compliments on it (one from a guy, which just floored me - do guys notice that sort of thing as a rule?). That makes me happy, and makes me feel like I'm doing OK not paying big bucks for a salon coloring.

Is it Saturday yet? I'm really excited about my date. I hope I'm not building it up to be more than it will be, but based on our conversations, I just have a feeling it has the potential to go well. Guess I'll find out on Saturday!

Coming up for air

Cheryl, just when you said you stop by every day to see if I update, I run off for three days! LOL

I've just been slammed at work, and I haven't felt like I've had much time or energy to update. J is back to being up until 10:00 every night, and it just drains me. I'm doing good to get the kitchen cleaned up before bed (and I don't always manage that!).

K's family was back for a brief visit - they're supposed to have follow-ups with the doctor here once a month for six months. K's bio mom stayed with me, and her husband stayed with K. We had a bit of an adventure early yesterday morning. N (K's bio mom) and I stayed up just stupid late talking and looking at pictures and going through J's baby stuff to see what K's sister could use (she's just had her second child). So I wasn't expecting to get much sleep anyway. But I was awakened even earlier than I'd planned, around 4:45 that morning, by J standing next to my bed asking, "Mama, what's that making that noise?" At first I thought it was my alarm, and I kept whacking at the clock wondering why the hell it wouldn't turn off. Then it finally penetrated my sleep-fuddled brain that it was the security system going off, and that N wasn't in the room anymore. So I dashed to the living room and turned off the alarm (the monitoring company was able to call off the cops), and looked for N. Apparently she was sleepwalking - she kept telling me J (her husband) and K were there, and going outside calling for them. At one point K called me (the alarm company called him, too - he's one of my contacts if the alarm goes off), and after that, N said she wondered where they'd gotten off to. I said, who? She said, J and K. I told her they were most likely in bed, asleep. She said she'd figured K would have gone to work - I said, well, yeah, but it's only 5 in the morning! LOL After that adventure, J was up for the day, and so was I. Boy, was I fried yesterday. Ugh. It's funny in retrospect, but at the time I was just peeved that I was missing out on an hour of sleep. LOLOL

I'd tried moving the bedtime routine up to start a little earlier, and when I can manage to do that (no easy task given that we often don't get home until 6:30 or later), he seems to get to sleep earlier. But if it's 8:00 or after, forget it, he's up until at least 10:00. I hate that we're prisoners of my work schedule, but that seems to be how it is, and I can't think of any way to improve it.

K and I have started talking about the divorce paperwork. I need to print it off so we can look at it and mark up things we want to change. I know there are some things that are mandated by the State, like the fact that child support has to be withheld from his paycheck (it would be more efficient for him to just transfer it to my account, and we get along well enough that that isn't a problem, so I'm not keen on this requirement - I understand the rationale behind it, but I don't like it). But I think that otherwise, as long as we both agree, that we can tweak a lot of the standard language to get it to work for us. We'd talked at one point about K not even having to go to court, that he could just sign a waiver of citation. I told him, though, that it might be better for both of us to be there, in case we're changing anything that the judge might want more information on. So we'll see. But the wheel has begun to roll, I think.

A curious thing happened Halloween night. J and I were home, just us. We'd been there a while, and he was already in bed when I noticed a sound in the background. I went into his bathroom and found the toilet running like it had just been flushed and the handle had hung up to where the water wouldn't cut off. ??? Neither of us had used that bathroom that night, and I know it wasn't running when I left the house that morning (I always double-check that, because I have a fear of my house flooding!). My brother coming by to visit, perhaps? It was Halloween, after all.

I'd better get to work. I'm going to the Estate Planning Council meeting, and will be out of pocket for over two hours with that, and I've got lots to do. I know I'll see C there, and the small, evil part of me really hopes he asks me out for this weekend so I can say no, sorry, I've got plans. LOLOLOL

More later....