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Just another one girl revolution.

Almost July?

Seriously, this year has passed the half-way point. Really? REALLY? God, I hate getting old because even a year doesn’t feel that long anymore. It’s weird–I remember so many things from when I was going to SIU. Granted, I was an older student already then–“non-traditional,” they called it–but I was 30, and man, that seems so young now. What kills me is that I look back and I’m like,  wow, that was about 9 years ago. Almost a decade! Where does the time go?

And then I’m like, well, ten years doesn’t really seems like that long anymore. Hell, in ten years, I’ll be pushing 50! Almost halfway to 100! I may be dead! Very possible, we don’t seem to last long in my family. My dad was only 69.  Although I think my Uncle Bobby is 78 or something like that. Maybe there is hope for me yet.

Death doesn’t creep slowly towards you; it barrels like a freight train.

Someone remind me to get  back on exercising again.

Fuck yeah, love wins!

YES.

YES.

 

Four years, first day.

Four years since Josh passed away. I took a diversity day to spend the day with the family. Personally, I think that living is  the best way to honor the dead.

Originally, the plan was to go to the zoo. Between the heat and the flooding, St. Louis was off, so we ended up at Cedar Lake Beach–Vincent’s first time at the beach!

Vincent's first beach trip

Vincent’s first beach trip.

Don’t let that face fool you. Okay, sure, at first, he cried. That was the first time in. Then I took this picture, and he started looking back again toward the lake. Jim took him back in, and next thing I know, Vincent is splashing and laughing like crazy. When we left, he cried and kept pointing at the lake.

Best way to deal with bad memories is to have a good day.

RIP, Josh. I hope you were watching.

Quiet!

I am trying to think of updates, since I don’t post very regularly these days.

A couple months ago, Vincent did see a speech therapist and a developmental specialist, just for evaluations. Verdict? He’s fine. In fact, they said he was either exactly where he should be, if not actually further ahead, in just about everything EXCEPT speech. (He apparently has quite a gift with puzzles and could work out several levels ahead of other kids his age.) Speech was the only thing he lagged in. They even said the delay was within the “acceptable level” of delay, so they were not recommending him for speech therapy or anything like that.

Fast forward to now, and he’s doing exactly what we figured he would be doing: Suddenly, saying new words left and right. It’s like he’s playing catch-up almost overnight. Before, it was a new word every month or couple of weeks. Now, it’s like a several within a day.

It’s pretty awesome.

What else? They haven’t cut the overtime at work yet. They keep getting approval to keep it up because our inventory is so high. That being said, I haven’t been working as much as even two months ago. Yet, money-wise, we’re doing okay because we have cut out so much eating out and reduced our grocery budget.

We’ve also been buying most things we want or need at yard sales. I’m pretty excited because we have almost Vincent’s entire fall/winter wardrobe done, and I don’t think we even spent a total of $15 on it. This includes a winter coat, a hat, and snow boots. I figure I can make him a knit or crochet cap. (He had one that I made when he was a baby, one that I made a couple sizes too big on purpose so that he could grow into it, but Jim lost it in Walmart.) While he has mittens, they’re knit, and I would like some good, waterproof ones for him. Oh, and some snow pants.

This past winter, he couldn’t play in the snow at all because we didn’t have stuff like that. We just had the bare essentials, but to be fair, we don’t usually get winters like the past winter in southern Illinois. Usually, we have snow for what seems to be like a day, then it’s gone.

This winter, damn it, if there’s snow, I want my kid to be able to play in it. We are keeping our eyes out for snow pants and waterproof mittens at yard sales. If we don’t find any–I think that snow pants may especially be a long shot–then we may end up having to buy them at  a store, but we’re hoping that it won’t come to that.

Anyway.

Jim recently has decided that he wants to do something as a family every weekend. I could go into detail of every damned thing that Jim claims or wants or intends to do, but I won’t. What I will say he is planning on doing a lot of things and making a lot of promises, that there’s no way he’s going to fit all of them in the week, and the only thing I will count on him doing is not missing games.

Whatever, I’m getting to where I don’t even care. At least it’s nice and quiet while he’s gone.

In other news, we’re getting storms here yet again, that reminds me of another thing: Last time I tried to post here, I got stopped halfway through because RAIN STARTED POURING IN FROM OUR CEILING. A small leak had developed before, Jim patched it, and we were thinking it was completely fixed until Monday, when quite a bit started coming in right by the TV. Thankfully, I hadn’t punched into work yet, so I could watch Vincent while Jim got into the attic and put  bowls to catch the water.

Jim patched it again earlier today and ran a hose on it to make sure the patch held. Good news: It held. Bad news: When Jim ran a hose up there, he found another leak he hadn’t known about, but it’s smaller and would have to rain REALLY heavy for it to even be an issue. Still, he’s going to have to track that down and fix that too.

All that being said, we do need to replace our shingles. He had mentioned that when the home inspector guy checked out our house, the guy mentioned that the shingles were at the very end of their life span.

Something else that I really need to budget for. Jim is actually even more concerned about the basement than the attic. We don’t do small problems around this house.

Eh, I should probably get to bed. I have to be up with Vincent in the morning. I was going to watch some My So-Called Life while I had the house to myself else, but eh. Fuck TV.

 

Tuesday bluesday.

Last night, I got a text from a co-worker, livid over some bad news she had heard. At work, they’ve raised the numbers we need to hit, then there are various system issues, changes they have implemented that make simply moving on to another inquiry more difficult, and as a consequence, a lot of people’s numbers are dropping.

And some work from home people are actually being sent back to work in the office.

I’m always pretty determined to stay on task, but today, I was extra determined. And even with the extra fire, it wasn’t good enough. I mean, I’ll probably end up average, but when you’ve gone so long excelling, it just feels like failure.

All she wants to do it rant, rant.

Sorry for the title, I have “All She Wants to Do is Dance” stuck in my head, for some reason. Go figure, because it’s not like I’ve been listening to that song, and it’s sure as hell not because I want to dance.

Today: Worked from 7 am to a little after 5. Phil was already here. When I heard he was coming over, I guessed it was because Ben officially quit Deadlands, and no Ben means no Kristie, and Jim knows I’m not very comfortable playing with many other people. (Or, let’s be honest, anyone, really.) So Jim and Phil are not too happy and discussing what’s going to happen with Deadlands. More than likely, it’s going to fold.

Anyway, all this is background. Point is, I’m tired of gaming. Not gaming itself, since I don’t do much of it, but I’m tired of the overwhelming presence it has in our lives and in my marriage. It’s a topic of conversation all the time, and it always seems to come with drama that puts Jim in a mood. Not long ago, I told Jim I didn’t really want hear about gaming anymore, but coming off my long day at work (which, incidentally, was also not an easy day), I got to deal with a grumpy, overly-sensitive husband, which always then puts me on edge, and to top it off, the hot topic? Gaming.

Ate dinner. Vincent was extremely fussy. I swear, I think he’s worse when he’s around company he’s more comfortable around. Every time Phil comes over, I find myself saying, “Seriously, he’s not usually like this.” Because he’s not. I don’t know what his deal is.

But he was fussy, wasn’t eating dinner, and I had decided even before I got off work that I was going to take him to the park because he’s usually indoors too much, and maybe he could work up an appetite. Besides, it was finally sunny today! And while was  gathering stuff together, I heard Phil and Jim talking about Karac’s game, talking about the possibility of doing that every Saturday. Jim swears he won’t. I am seriously NOT thrilled about the idea. But if he doesn’t do it and they do run every Saturday, he’s going to mope, give me the sad, I’m so put-upon eyes.

This is frustrating. It’s frustrating because Jim want to pretty much game with Phil, and Phil wants to fill his life up with gaming. But here’s the thing: Phil is going through a divorce. When he leaves for the evening, he doesn’t leave behind a family. He does not leave behind an exhausted wife who has worked all day and now has handle all the kid stuff alone while her grown husband is off pretending to battle imaginary monsters.

And it’s not like I have a problem with the work that comes with being a mom. I knew it was coming, I expected it, and welcomed it. The problem I have is feeling like one spouse in this marriage is working almost all the time when the other has decidedly more breaks. I have a problem with the lack of fairness.

Yesterday, it had gone quite a while since I had gotten any alone time, that I started feeling shaky and sick. Jim actually elected to not go to Warhammer to give me a break. It was welcome. It was needed. I never asked for him to do that, but I appreciated that he did. I didn’t even bring my phone with me, I just turned on the fan to block out noise and curled up into a ball under the covers to block out any sight. I just wanted sensory deprivation at that point. I felt like vomiting. I almost cried with relief to finally be alone and have some freakin’ quiet.

I laid awake that for a long time, relishing the solitude, until I finally dozed off. And, no, I had no problems falling asleep last night either.

Sometimes, I think I’m so mentally exhausted, that it’s making me physically exhausted, because, honestly, there is so much I need to do and I’m just too tired. Honestly, I’m barely getting through this. I just need something to occupy my time so I have an excuse to be in my room until a respectable bedtime because I do not want to be in the living room. I do not want to hear and discuss any more about gaming.

Hey, look. 9:44. I think that’s a respectable bedtime. And if not, whatever. I can’t keep my eyes open forever.

Goodbye, weekend. You kind of sucked.

Friday, my co-worker IMed something along the lines of Yay, it’s Friday! and it really did nothing for me. I knew the weekend wasn’t going to be a good one. The visitation for Jim’s cousin was Friday, the funeral was Saturday, leaving Sunday for nothing but chores, errands, and obligations.

I thought I would at least be going to the visitation or the funeral. I assumed I would try to get my overtime in on Saturday around the funeral. But things came up, plans kept getting rearranged, and it just didn’t  happen. I did end up babysitting on Friday (oddly, watching two 2-years-olds wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be), but I didn’t on Saturday, when I expected I would. But somehow, with the all the rearrangements and things we needed to get done, I just didn’t really have time for overtime.

It’s been very hectic lately, and it seems like I’m not doing much overtime as a consequence. Oh, yeah, and no, they haven’t taken it away yet. It was supposed to be gone by now, but the inventory is still too high, so they extended overtime through May.

Anyway, I feel bad that I didn’t make it to either the visitation or funeral, but babysitting the other toddler–Vincent’s 2nd cousin Sam, who is the first cousin of the boy who died–meant that his parents could be at the visitation and focus on grieving and helping out. I did wish I could have said goodbye, even though I didn’t know him well. I appreciated how good he was with Vincent. I’m sorry he felt like ending his own life was the only answer. Had I known, I would have tried to help. But I think if any of us had known, we all would have. We all feel that way, I’m sure.

That, and helpless.

Moving on before I get more depressed…

Following that was Jim’s Deadlands game. Ben and Kristie had to bow out. Jim’s not terribly happy because Ben has already mentioned having concert tickets for a night that falls on game night and is already planning another cancellation. Jim has stated that Ben has now cancelled as many games as he has attended. (He also missed the last one, but we ended up having to cancel game because we couldn’t find a sitter.) We had our game Saturday night, but Jim, Nick, and Phil stayed up afterwards to discuss a game that Nick plans on running should Deadlands fold, which it’s already starting to look like it will.

This morning, I admitted to him that I think Deadlands will be my last campaign that I do. Don’t get me wrong, the story is cool and the game is kind of fun, and Jim’s friends are really nice, but at the end of the day, they are huge roleplayers and I. Hate. It. HATE it. I like watching them do it, but I don’t want to do it. The few characters that I’ve made, I always pick someone non-descript and plain who doesn’t like to talk, so I don’t stick out and none of the NPCs will want to really deal with me, etc, but roleplaying still creeps in, and it just stresses me out.

Jim isn’t happy about it, but he’s pretty accepting and is toying with the idea of replacing me. I’m not jumping out, like, RIGHT NOW, though. I figured I will wrap up the game with everyone, but at this point, I’m not really interested in playing anymore. I told Jim that maybe I could take notes on his games so others wouldn’t have to, so I could still hear the stories and the roleplaying without having to participate.

To be honest, though, I just wish gaming would go away. I wish Jim would just outgrow it. But with Phil going through his divorce and now gaming all the time, it feels like Jim is getting swept back into it hardcore again. I don’t know. I know it’s just a hobby and I don’t think it’s better or worse than other hobbies; it’s just another thing we don’t have in common.

Sadness.

Yesterday, Jim told me that his dad had called. His cousin’s son had committed suicide. It floored me. We see the kid pretty much on holidays, and he always seemed to be so cheerful. I had heard he was really into wrestling in school. The loner, depressed kid stereotypes you think of when you think of people who commit suicide just didn’t fit him.

Last time I saw him, he was playing with Vincent. I remember thinking and commenting how good he was with Vincent. I was surprised because I hadn’t known before that he was good with kids. Vincent had a blast with him.

I thought maybe I just didn’t know him well enough to not see this coming, so I asked Jim: Were there any signs?

Nope. None. Jim’s cousin posted on Facebook that we may never know what happened. It’s so scary. He was only 15.

Mercury-mangled.

Earlier on Facebook, one of my friends mentioned Mercury being in a shadow period proceeding a retrograde or something like that. I had no clue what that meant, but it sounded interesting, so I looked it up in the few minutes I had between watching Vincent while Jim slept because he had a toothache (which miraculously disappeared in time for Warhammer tonight) and punching into work.

What little I gathered was it has something to do with Mercury and its path, something about appearing to move backward, etc, etc…but why were people saying things like I’ve felt like Mercury has been in retrograde all week?

Then I spotted it. Aha. It’s supposed to affect communication.

Now, I don’t know much about astrology at all, don’t really follow it, mostly read it occasionally as entertainment and then usually forget what I’ve read. (I don’t retain much these days, except water, heh.) But the conversation popped into my head tonight. With Jim gone and Vincent in bed, I got it into my head that I needed to get back into writing. Why not? I’m feeling good and moody for it.

But there’s a problem: I can’t seem to write anymore.

I don’t know what’s happened. I used to be really good at writing short fiction. I wrote entire stories the day or two before they were due (not a good practice to adopt, by the way), and my professors often told me that I didn’t need much revision for my stories to be publishable.

And now…I can’t write. I have nothing.

I chalk it up to being much happier now than I used to be. Jim frustrates me, but he doesn’t leave me empty and sad and scared the way my ex-husband did. And Vincent is just the light of my life. I wonder if finally being fulfilled robbed me of really my only talent…or if I even had a talent to begin with, if I could lose it so easily?

I guess I can do what everyone else does and just work on it.

Or I can blame Mercury. :)

The long road.

I had a dream about my dad last night. In my dream, it was the day he died again but just a few hours before. He would still die, I was told, but at least this time, I could be there.

The problem was that we were on a road, a road that was hundreds of miles long, if not more, and there were thousands of people between us.  Dad was so far ahead. I yelled and pushed through the crowd as hard as I could. I had a million things to say, to ask,  but he  couldn’t see or hear me, and I could never catch up.

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