Sigh

Tonight I sit at home in pajama pants with the sky darkening and threatening to rain.  The dog is snoring next to me, the cats are scattered and sleeping.  We are all pleasantly exhausted.

Tomorrow brings about Sam coming home for a few days so she can get her college orientation done and a doctors appointment. This week at work is crazy busy, but will be fulfilling as always. 

I still find myself saying “sigh” tonight, even after reading, making a huge bowl of pasta salad, watching Orange is the New Black and straightening up around the apartment.  I feel unaccomplished and like I am not doing something I should be. 

I sigh because my heart is heavy.  I am lost without having my baby girl home every night. Cooking for one has been a challenge.  Pippa misses Sam and so do the cats.  I sigh because I realize how many things my daughter has done to help me around the house that now I am doing.  I sigh when I want to talk about my day and she isn’t here. 

I am grateful that she is heading to college and I am so happy that she has a bright future ahead of her. 

The sigh is because, while I know I have friends, I feel lonely.  Like there is something missing.  I’m ready for the next chapter in my life.  I’m ready to explore and cross a few things off my list.

As a single woman, who is pretty strong, I wonder – am I a superhero? Does being a superhero mean I can’t sigh?

Sigh, I just don’t know. 

Thoughts on Motherhood

I started this on May 19, 2017 ~ finally finishing and publishing on May 30, 2017 ~ Motherhood has me all kinds of cray-cray!

Everyday I read and hear people tell me how hard Motherhood is, how hard it is to work and raise kids or how hard they have it as a stay at home mom.
When I start to think about my life I am very grateful that I don’t see Motherhood as hard.  It has its challenges, that is for certain. 

My daughter is now 18.  

She didn’t arrive in a smooth fashion, instead she showed up early and spent 45+ days in the NICU. That wasn’t easy, going home and not taking my daughter with me. 

I get a lot of people who don’t understand how I am not upset when my daughter is not home for extended periods of time. 

I have been divorced since 2001, I’m used to not having her home.  I have always shared her with her dad and his family.   

Do I love her any less?  No.  Am I a bad mom when I don’t miss her as much as other parents miss their kids?  No. 

Have I cried over the last 18 years?  Sure I did.  I have cried a lot, as there have been many things to cry about.  Today was one of those days.  It was her last day of school.  Today I took her to school, picked up leftover artwork and knew that it was the last day she would buy her coffee and water and walk the halls as a student. 

Then I sat in my car and cried.  Will I admit it openly, no, but I cried. 

In my opinion Motherhood is not hard.   Then again maybe I am not a normal mom.  I enjoy a clean home, but I would rather some home from work, cook dinner and sit my ass on the couch and enjoy the couple hours of quiet than scrub a bathroom, vacuum or clean litter boxes.  I also live in an apartment, so on a Saturday I can clean top to bottom in 3 or so hours. 

Maybe Motherhood doesn’t seem hard to me because I don’t have a spouse or significant other at home with me.  This means no fighting, no setting expectations for another person and being able to do your own thing.

What I do know is, my opinion on Motherhood will always be it is hard, you never get a day off and you will never feel the same kind of love that you get when a child hugs you, no matter what the age. 

We are now 72 hours post-graduation and all I know is the tears keep springing up and I realize how much I will miss her in my life each and every day.  

Just as my mother has loved me through my good, bad and ugly I shall do the same as my daughter makes her way through life. 

Hug your families a little tighter this evening.

Maybe It Is Me?

Well folks, my self esteem has tanked.  I have been a paying member of both Zoosk and EHarmony and apparently it must be either my photos or how I am wording my answers.  Right?
Maybe people aren’t doing online dating? Maybe they don’t get online dating?

Lately I have been the target of one and done dates, men that hat and don’t follow up or men that are so much older than me it is disgusting to think about. 

Let’s take for example a man I have been “chatting” with for over 3+ weeks.  This happened:

I guess meeting is too much to ask.


Then I really started to question myself and my profiles and thought who better to analyze my dating profile than the internet. 

Now I am asking the interwebs to take a look. Be honest. What should I do?

Here is my EHarmony profile.  Be honest – I can’t grow without help.  They say honesty is the best policy. 

Profile pictures – yay or nay?

Basic information – not too spicy!


Likes/Dislikes – not much I can improve on! Right?

Any suggestions? The internet knows me best!

Missing a section, need some help!

At the end of the day my profile gets skipped over, men don’t respond to my messages. Instead I get winks and lewd remarks that amount to feeling all kinds of strange things. 

Are there any good men out there? Ones that open doors, care and are kind.  Maybe a man that talks about more than sex, can discuss careers, current events, sports and other topics.

I wonder if I am meant to be single.  Maybe I need to go back to just taking care of me. 

At the end of the day, it is my heart and my soul that keep getting rejected and little by little they are wearing down. 

Share your thoughts – they are always welcome and received with an open mind. 

Peace and Love!

Parenthood

I recently had the privilege of spending quality time with three amazing people.  These 7 days were some of the most blissful and exhausting days in recent years.  Some things that I realized over these 7 days when it comes to motherhood led me to believe that even though I love the smell, touch and sound of a wee little one, as I am rounding the corner to 40, caring for a newborn is a lot harder than I recall.

There are a number of things that are now a part of raising a baby that were not a part of raising my daughter (who is now 18 and graduating high school) back in 1998.

Let me start with bottle warmers.  We didn’t have these fancy contraptions.  Your baby cried and cried until you could get the water in the sink warm enough to soak the bottle in a cup to warm the milk.  Now, in 3.5 minutes you can have a bottle ready to go.  I find this a wonderful contraption, yet I think every parent should experience the baby wailing at the top of their lungs who wants nothing more than to be fed.

Next up, Diaper Genies.  A convenient way to dispose of stinky diapers.  Now, I think this is genius.  We had a garbage can, but it sure didn’t contain the smell the same way the Diaper Genie does.  I absolutely love this contraption.

Baby bathtubs may have existed when my daughter was younger, but I sure didn’t have one.  Instead we used the kitchen sink.

4Moms Baby Swing is something that I sure as heck didn’t have.  It is a pretty neat contraption, but I am not 100% sure that it is something that my daughter would have ever used.  I am lucky she used a bouncer seat and the one we had sure as heck didn’t have a battery operated contraption attached to it.

I forgot what cat naps were and I forgot what trying to decipher a cry was like.

I was reminded what it was like to pack up a baby, put them in the car and go to the grocery store.  It is a challenge to grocery shop when you have a baby in a car seat and can only fit so many groceries around a car seat without feeling like you are smooshing the baby and ruining whatever food you are getting.

I was pleasantly surprised that a Boba Wrap wasn’t as confusing as I thought it was and allowed me to be hands-free to work a little while he was sleeping.

At the end of the day, taking care of a baby, cooking, cleaning and working is exhausting. It isn’t for the faint of heart, however it causes your heart to swell with love and joy every time you look into the sweet eyes and catch a coy smile along the way.

As I move further away from my 20’s and closer to my 40’s I am reminded I make a good aunt to little boys and girls.  My little bit of time that I spent with a sweet 2 month old took me back to the times when things were simpler in the technology arena, but everyone still gave you advice and their two cents worth.  It is still the same though, nobody knows your baby better than you do and you can take it all with a grain of salt.

All the amazing people in my life that are moms and dads have one thing in common – their unconditional love for their children.  You can see it in their eyes and hear it in their voice, along with sheer exhaustion, there is a love, only a parent can explain.

I will always be grateful for being a parent.  Always.

7 Years

It seems so long ago.  Hard for me to recall a lot of details.  I can tell you what I was wearing and what a room looked like, or what I ate, but to describe activities and connect them to specific dates, not likely. 

It is funny how a string of memories connects itself 7 years later and triggers all kinds of feelings. 

————

7 years ago I tried the whole rekindling an old romance by visiting Pennsylvania.  Spent a long weekend there touring the city and enjoying time with someone that, to this day, I really care about. 

Romance, in particular long distance romance, wasn’t what I needed at the time.  It was apparent, neither did he. 

We were in two different worlds and my life was just starting to get put back together and his career was taking an upward swing. 

Was I crazy about him, yes.  I still am today.  He is one of the most talented people I know.  One of those individuals who I will always have a connection with, in one way or another. 

Funny, 7 years later we text nearly everyday.  I look forward to bantering about sports, work and the occasional personal items.  

While the whole rekindling romance thing regretfully didn’t work out (both then and now) a short while later I was introduced to someone, slightly more local. 

We did the whole talking/texting thing until all hours of the night and eventually went out.  Then he actually asked me to be his girlfriend.

So, I was.  For a short time. 

Funny thing, he is still a part of my life.  He is smart and funny, sarcastic as ever.  We have dinner when we are in town together and text occasionally.   There hasn’t been any inclination of rekindling, but it’s nice to know he is still a friend.

I share this today because people have a way of coming in and out of our lives at strange times, when we least expect it.

Does this mean anything? 

I’m not a scientist, so for me it means I am lucky. Very lucky to have people in my life I can pick up where we left off and still be social with years later. 

Not everyone is someone you will talk to every day for the rest of your life, but appreciate and celebrate the small moments of having good people in your life. 

Now, if you think I have an amazing memory, you are wrong.  These events could have happened 10 years ago, but thanks to Facebook I can tell you when things happened in my life.  

Aren’t you excited?

What the Heck?

I have not been blogging much because quite frankly I don’t have time. My weeks look like this:

Monday – Drive from Columbus to Cleveland

Tuesday – Work in Cleveland

Wednesday – Work in Cleveland and plan to go home at the end of the day, but stay because…work. 

Thursday – Work in Cleveland and try to finish before 3:00 pm to make it home by dinner – not a guarantee. 

Friday – it’s a crap shoot if I make it home to my family (well, my daughter and pets) before 5:00 pm. 

Saturday – Clean and cook so that when I leave again there is food and the apartment doesn’t look like pigs live in it. 

Sunday – Laundry and pack – hopefully have a meal with my daughter and go to bed early. 

Part of me wishes for a normal life.  You know the fairytale that looks like this:

Get up (without a migraine and looking amazing)

Make everyone breakfast while smiling and being cheerful)

Send everyone on their way, take a leisurely shower, get ready and go to work (after making sure the house is immaculate and dinner is prepped)

Come home, do homework, make dinner and enjoy family time

Everyone goes to bed without a problem and I can enjoy wine, a bath, a good book or some television 

Go to bed with my loving partner and do it all again the next day

What. The. Heck. 

Who knows if this is really a thing.  If it is, shit, I want in on it. 

My life is instead riddled with anxiety, thoughts of not being good enough, add some level of hating how I look and make sure to include a healthy fear of being alone forever. 

Again, what the heck?

When I called my mom tonight and kindly explained (through tears) that I was not wanting to come home Sunday because it meant a lot of unnecessary driving, she made me feel like it is all my fault that I have a job that takes me out of town.

Yes mom, it is my fault. 

It’s my fault I live in Columbus

It’s my fault I travel too much. 
It’s my fault I go home to Columbus Saturday morning to come back to Cleveland Sunday for Easter, back to Columbus and then go back to work Monday morning in Cleveland. 

I must come home and drive 10+ hours over less than 72 hour period to appease my mom.

It’s no wonder I’m single and find it impossible to fall in love.  When the hell do I have time to date?

I miss my home.  I miss having a life.  I miss my daughter and I miss my pets. 

That right there is my life. I work hard and go without a lot to make them happy.  Because they make me happy.  I sacrifice and sometimes put myself and my needs last to make sure they are cared for.

Just for once I would love to not be left saying what the heck and shaking my head at the end of each day. 

What’s next?

I’m not sure, but I’m open for suggestions!

When I Look…

One of the things I have tried to instill into my daughter and all little girls that are part of my life is that you need to be who you are and own it. 

The problem is that I don’t always own who I am.  

Why?  

  • Because I am ashamed of my past life. 
  • Because I don’t like what I see. 
  • Because I think I am ugly.
  • Because I think I am obese. 
  • Because my mental health gets in the way. 
  • Because friendships don’t come easy.
  • Because sometimes my mouth moves faster than my brain. 
  • Because once in a while my heart moves faster than my head. 

When I look in the mirror I see what’s not there vs what is there. I see a woman who is almost 40 missing a lot of things:

  •  A partner
  • A house I own
  • A sexy body
  • A college education
  • Money in savings
  • Good credit

I have great intentions and really have plans to do great things mentally, physically and emotionally.

  • Drink water
  • Go to the gym
  • Walk more
  • Eat clean
  • Save money
  • Think positively
  • Work on my wellness
  • Better friendships

Lately I feel like a crappy friend and family member.  Likely because I can’t seem to be there for anyone.  I want to be able to care for everyone all the time and when I can’t I sink deeper and deeper into a depression.

When I look in the mirror I start to see lies, cheats, deception and everything I have done that is horrible.  I forget to look at the good, wholesome and productive things that I have done and still do. 

Someone asked me about suicide the other day after the death of the founder of the Semi Colon Project that brought awareness to suicide. We had a brief heart to heart where I really didn’t get a chance to share my suicide stories, but listened to theirs.  It made me start thinking about my past and I realized how far I have come in the last few years.

Over the years I have never been able to ignore my mental health, as it stares me in the face everytime I look in the mirror.  It doesn’t go away, but I learn how to live deal with it and manage.

My point in all this is, when I look into my own eyes I see pain and sorrow.  I want to see happiness and joy in my eyes on a daily basis.  I know that sometimes there are bad days and sometimes there are great days.  What I look for is an in-between to have all the time, a medium ground. 

When I look at life I ask myself why for a number of reasons and try very hard to stop comparing myself to others.

It is because of my mental illness that I have these thoughts and feel like I am going crazy sometimes.  Will I ever be able to have a normal life, probably not.  Will I ever be able to think normal thoughts, likely no.  Maybe one day I will be able to improve my self esteem and feel better about myself. 

What I do know is I can’t rely on someone else to make my self-esteem improve.  I also know that I can’t be in a relationship if I can’t take compliments and be truly happy. 

As I look into the mirror tonight I see someone who spent the day in pajamas and whose hair is cattywompus, but crossed some things off her list and managed to keep two dogs from ruining my home. 

What do you see tonight when you look in the mirror?