Thursday, July 26, 2012

Reasonable Doubt

Is it a conscious decision that we make to phase someone out of our lives or is it something that simply happens?  Are those friendships which we held most dear 5, 10 or 15 years ago and now no longer exist not there because we willingly and knowingly walked away from them or is it something far less decisive and simplistic in that we simply drifted apart from those friends and those relationships?

I think about the friendships I have now and the ones I do not.  Some ended of my own decision and choice.  Some of them ended because I made mistakes and ended up ruining, permanently, what we had.  Some ended because someone else did something wrong that ended the friendship.  And some, well, they live in this in between place where there is no reason or explanation.

I cannot pinpoint the moments in certain friendships where they ceased to exist and for many of them, I'm ok with that.  I believe in the idea of forever friends and I also believe in the idea of friends who drift in and out of your life for specific reasons.  I guess the thing that I'm struggling with is the idea that certain friendships I was sure would be forever friendships and have ended up drifting away with little to no explanation.

Those are the friendships that I'd really like reason for.

These are not the friendships where I am at fault or the other person is at fault.  These are the friendships that were once talk everyday and see one another as much as possible and then they drifted into less frequent talking, occasional emails, maybe a text or two.  And then the canceled plans and unanswered emails and ignored texts and eventually there is no communication.

And I'm left to wonder how the friendships that are maintained for that person are more important than the one we had.  I'm left to question if I did do something wrong.  I'm left to wonder how it all got away from us and if the other person feels the same way.

And I'm beginning to doubt that very much.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Sacrificing Me for the Sake of Me

How do you make the really big changes?

I mean short of walking away from your career of 9 years and taking some time to be home with your kids.  And then very quickly realizing that while you really do love staying home you need to find a way to bring in some cash.  Because, holy crap, medical bills and student loans and, oh, hey, that electric bill comes every month and when it's hot it goes way way up!

But seriously, that change was easily in comparison to what I'm thinking about and needing to do now.

The husband and I have committed to bettering our family and home life.  We have committed to stop being lazy parents who yell and while that sounds so perfect to say out loud and it's so great in theory.  It's super crazy hard.  Because when you've been doing what you're doing for so long, changing it is hard.

I've also been living in a semi-funk where I tell myself I'm trying as hard as I can to lose all of my pre and post baby weight.  I wake up each morning and I track my points and I do my best not to indulge in all of those things that I want so badly.  Except sometimes I do and I slip and I do it so royally that I erase so much of my previous progress that I find myself in a vicious cycle.

So, I stepped on the scale this morning, after a two day binge and a one day of eating under my points and an evening at the gym and I was upset with what the scale showed.  Except that it showed two VERY different numbers.  And in this case, and this case only, I blame the scale.  Needless to say, I'm buying a new scale this afternoon!

But I digress.  I'm making these changes in so many areas of my life and the one place that I'm not changing is within myself for myself.  I know how I feel when I'm healthy.  I know what it feels like to slip into the clothes that I packed away over a year ago when I first found out I was pregnant.  And I know how it feels to go clothes shopping only to put on clothes in a size that I promised myself I'd never be again.

But be gentle with myself is what I keep hearing.  You just had twins less than a year ago.  Be kind to your body, your body takes longer to adjust than other people's bodies because of your history.  Remember, you're in your 30s now, the weight is there for good.  (Thanks for that last one, doc, I really appreciate your help and guidance in trying to get back to my "healthy" weight.)

To all of those comments I give a big F YOU!  They are excuses.  I was kind to myself for the first few months.  My body needed time to adjust to having just give birth to two babies at once.  My hormones and levels needed to readjust themselves.  I needed to be ready to do this all over again.

And having setbacks seemed to be the norm.  The biggest one being that I'm not supposed to run anymore.  And I told myself that was ok.  I hate running.  It hurts, it sucks, I'm not the fastest or the best.  Well, I was wrong.  I'm not supposed to run anymore- my knees are RIDDLED with arthritis.  I'm gearing up for needles to be stuck into my joints to help make them better, or at least tolerable, until I can have another reconstructive surgery.  But even with all of that, running was the one thing that 1) kept the weight off and 2) gave me piece of mind.

So, now I have to figure out how to change all over again.  Changing myself, beginning with leaving my job, will hopefully help to dovetail into more changes.  Better things.  And those better things have to come at a price and that means sacrifice.

The big changes happen when you give up the little things that keep you where you are and where you've always been.  Those little things mean no more late nights and no more binge fests with food or booze.  Those little things mean getting up before my husband leaves for work so that I can get to the gym or go for a walk/run.  Those little things mean that I have to stop being ok with we being averagely normal and go back to making myself and my  life and my family outstandingly unique.

So, just like I try to sacrifice the things that taste so good- like french fries and milkshakes and full fat ice cream (on a regular basis) I now need to start sacrificing part of myself so that I can remake those parts into something better than what they are.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Forever Friends

One of the things I was really looking forward to with regards to our move was settling in somewhere and really connecting to the community and to the people within the community.  Now, I am fully aware that this cannot happen overnight.  And I am also fully aware that sometimes it's hard to do, especially when so many people have been here for so long and are already connected.  Plus, working full time and spending a lot of time working on our house hasn't helped with being out in the community.  But, I was confident that it would happen.

Part of me was really looking to connect with local moms and expand my small group of friends in the area to something a bit larger.  Something where our kids were playing together and we could coordinate playdates and spontaneous weekend BBQs- you know just like happily ever after TV stuff.  I realize that this, in and of itself, is somewhat unrealistic and ridiculous.  I don't mean the playdates or BBQs, but rather the idea that it would happen easily and right away.

The other part of me was extremely excited for my kids to start making lifetime friends.  As of right now, we have no future plans to leave this area.  I'm currently unemployed but all of the positions I'm considering would not require us moving.  And my husband, while employed but hunting, is not looking for something that would require relocation.  We want to settle in for the long haul and that's why we chose this area.  That being said, I want our kids to settle in and start finding the friendships that they will have with them forever.

I think about the women that I'm friends with now.  Some of them are friendships that are no more than 5 years old.  Some of them go all the way back to Kindergarten.  There is something about each of the friendships that is special and unique and important.  I want my kids to have that.

And I'm worried that they won't.

I watch my kids and how they interact with other kids and I worry that, in some way, we've failed them.  My son especially.  My son is so smart.  I mean like, I used the word exceptional to describe him to someone at the school district a few weeks ago.  And as a result of his being such a brainy kid, I worry that he somewhat lacks the social skills that will help him make friends.  Plus, we've had him in two different schools in the past two years and I don't think that has helped matters.  Hopefully, the fact that he will be in his permanent school starting in September will help.  But the other day at the lake I had to hold myself back from pouncing on another kid as I witnessed an innocent interaction between him and my son.

The kids love the lake.  They would play in it for hours if I let them.  While I'm not even close to a lake person, I love that it's steps from our house and it's easy and wonderful entertainment for my kids.  So, needless to say, we spend a fair amount of time there.  Me on the beach, them in the water.  We were down there for swimming lessons and my son was watching this group of boys play with a football in the water.  He was only a few feet from their game and it was obvious that he was not included in the game but I really think he wanted to be. (He says he just wanted to watch).  So, I'm eyeing the scene and trying to rationalize why these kids, who were maybe a year or so older (if that) than my son weren't asking him to play.  And then this red headed kid turns around, says something to my kid and splashes him in the face.  As I type this I want to cry, just as I did that day.  It hurt to watch this kid do that to my kid.  It made me upset.  In some ways, it actually brought me back to my own childhood.  Within minutes of the incident there was thunder and we had to get going.

So, we left and as we walked I asked my son about the incident.  I asked him why this other kid splashed him.  He said he had no idea.  I asked how he responded, he really didn't.  And that's when I told my kid to do something I never, ever, thought I would say.  "Look, bud, the next time something like that happens you turn to the kid and say, 'I really didn't like that.' then splash him back and walk away."

My son was dumbfounded.  And so was I, really.

His response to me, "But two wrongs don't make a right."


"Well, yes, you're absolutely right about that but you also need to stand up for yourself.  That kid had no reason to splash you or say whatever he said to you.  You have to stand up for yourself and for what is right. Don't EVER let anyone treat you like you don't matter."

"Ok, mommy."

Do I know if my advice was right?  No.  As a matter of fact, it probably wasn't. But I REFUSE to watch my kid get treated like he doesn't matter and I refuse to watch him be excluded simply because he's not Mr. Personality or Mr. Sports.  Those kids don't know what they're missing in him.

So, I sit on the beach now and as much as I don't want to, I watch him like a hawk.  I want to make sure that he's not being excluded.  I want to make sure that no one is treating him like he's not even there.  I also want to make sure that he's standing up for himself.

And then I watch as his sister, surrounded by a group of girls, comes to his rescue and invites him to play with them.  His response?

He splashes them and walks away.

Clearly, we have a bit of work to do.

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