Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Some new reading..

I've mentioned plenty of times before that I read Dooce.

I've found a couple of new blogs that I enjoy. One is Whoopee! Absolutely hilarious. Makes me want to be British.

Then there is Fuck You, Penguin, which Jason can't stop talking about. He literally spent twenty minutes trying to find it last night and, when I finally found it for him, he collapsed into giggles for the next twenty minutes on the couch.

Friday, December 26, 2008


I'm pretty sure some crazy stuff is about to blow up around me and Jason pretty soon. It's all a crazy mess, the result of mistakes we've made recently concerning Kane and Jude. I'll have a lot, A LOT more to say on this in the next few weeks if things calm down that quickly.

As the year rambles to a close I am left thinking about what an awful period of my life this has been, how awful it's been for me and how awful I, in turn, have made it for everybody around me.

I am so lucky to be surrounded by people who empathise, sympathise, keep caring, persevere, who understand that a lot of this is bigger than me, bigger than my heart can take, bigger than my TEENY, TINY BRAIN can comprehend. I need a lot of help sometimes, and thank jeez there are people around me who want to give it to me. I don't know where I would be now if it weren't for you guys. I would NOT be at work in a good job, listening to Elvis Costello, thinking how we will make it through this. I would probably be one of those people who is always, ALWAYS over on the far side of the bar at the Plaza, drinking and not talking or making eye contact with anyone, only thinking quietly about the shambles his life has become.


Y'all are so damn lucky I'm around, because your life would probably be so boring without me in it.

Seriously, though, every year I sort of momentarily consider New Year's resolutions and I usually move on without making any because, SHIT, this life is so unpredictable and bizarre I just never feel like I can live up to resolutions. This year, I have considered it carefully and I think I want to resolve to be more fierce, more steadfast, more calm, steady, sure. I have this tendency to be super paranoid, to start thinking weird things are going on or to second-guess decisions, and looking back on this year makes me realize that I am frequently right or at least not totally off. I resolve to listen to myself a little more closely, to stop being so hard on myself, to stop telling myself that I'm wrong, stupid, crazy, so automatically. I resolve to remember that I can make it through anything. I resolve to listen to my instincts and to feel less like I need to bend against my gut reactions.

I resolve to stand up for myself loudly, clearly, make myself heard if anyone fucks with me, my marriage, my family the way some people have this year. I will not take any more of this quietly, will not walk away without PUNCHING SOME BITCH IN THE FACE, at least metaphorically. Maybe what I could do, you know, to help the economy, is pay a homeless guy to punch you in the face and I'll stand by with my Martin guitar and play More Than Nothing by the Vindictives. WHATEVER. I do not care what this says about me, I do not care what impression this gives, just know that you got off easy this time and it will not happen again.

Tired of hearing about it? No you're not. Shut up.

Those of you who take such good care of me, who worry about me and help so much, you all sort of mesh together and form a nice soft place for me to fall, and I love you for it. Y'all all come over here and sit on mama's lap and I'll pour you a bourbon and sing Crimson and Clover quietly in your ear. You know who you are. Thank you.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

A day in the life of Buffy's iPod.

I figured Doolittle would be a perfectly good album to start off the morning with. Nothing says "Christmas! Baby Jesus!" like "Whores at the door, whore in my bed."

Then onto my own mix of David Bowie, both oldies and newsies. Starman is my groove right now: it makes me feel resplendent.

Then I listened to Maggie May by Rod Stewart. That one makes me feel kind of kicky in a I-KNOW-WHAT-IT-IS-TO-BE-WRONGED-BUT-FUCK-ALL-I'M-ALIVE kind of way. "Maggie, I wish I'd never seen your face."

I went for Saves the Day, Stay What You Are, in the spirit of rememberance and nostalgia. I associate a lot of these songs with several different people, Josh and Stephanie and Adam, mostly; also with my old apartment, a tiny little efficiency that, if intense memories took up space, would never even begin to hold even a tenth of what I associate with it, love and fights and beginnings and endings and hangovers and sleep and music and screaming and laughing and gathering and drinking and eating, saying hello and saying goodbye. "Well here I am, don't know how to say this. Only thing I know is awkward silence. Your eyelids close when you're around me to shut me out."

Then I suddenly wanted Toadies, Hell Below/Stars Above- sexy, sexy music that makes me think about sexin' up my husband. Nothing like some hard and fast guitar and a little bit of screaming. "Swimming in pride, my sweet thing. It's such a pretty night for losing our innocence, our tenderness. It's all been kissed away, and now you know you're a free soul, and you can't fight that little sin." Also, "Chase the stars as they fall down and light up where you are; they are yours for the keeping. Trace the curves of the sheets, a riddle of desire when I watch you sleeping."

Then I listened to Wallflower Girl by Better Than Ezra. I really like this band although I don't listen to them very often. The band makes me think of my old friend Nicki; we used to sing their songs and laugh. I don't see her any more and I don't know where she is. This song, though, makes me think of being 18 or 19, not because I was a wallflower girl, but because I loved LOVED this song. That's about the time that I found my singing voice, found my inner musician, found myself, the self that I am now. "Well you used to read the tarrot cards but you don't like what you find. Well I suppose we both know your future anyway." I listened to it twice.

I have a short day at work today, so I've decided to close out the day with Erotic City by George Clinton. It makes me feel like dancin'. Nothing like the F word on a religious holiday. I'm going to dance my way out of here in a minute. Y'all have a merry Christmas.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

I'm okay for the moment. I've had some very serious distraction in the past few days.

I've locked my blog so that only invited readers can see it. I hope to eventually change it back to being public, because I don't like the idear of have to hide my thoughts, feelings, and experiences, no matter what they are.

Posting will be light for a while until we get a few things worked out. Really I have too much that I want to say, and I'd rather say nothing at all than to be all, "Well, it's sunny today. I bought some lemons." while I'm screaming in my head about everything that's happening.

We're all okay, and I'm hoping that some things are about to get better and work themselves out that will make us even more okay. I'll tell you about it eventually.

I love you guys.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Fun with a capital FECKIT.

I have extended my Etsy buy one, get one sale through today, so check it out.

Jason has been driving all over the world, driving his head off, since his car broke down yesterday. He has to take me to work and take Reed to school AND pick me up and pick Reed up, besides the forty errands I already had listed for him to accomplish, besides the forty new errands that have now come up on account of his car breaking down.

This morning he bought an 18-pound fresh NOT FROZEN turkey that tomorrow I will prepare with my mom whilst entertaining a three-year-old, THE three-year-old, the person who talks the most in my life and who needs contstant reassurance that YES WE WILL DO THAT, YES WE WILL BUY ONE, YES YOU WILL GO THERE, NO IT'S NOT BEDTIME.

This week has been FUN with a capital FUCKALL, and I am looking forward to eating 18 pounds of turkey and drinking one beer for each pound tomorrow night.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Also, as I am in a "I NEED MONEY LIKE NOW", also known as "LETS BUY JASON AN ALTERNATOR", kind of mood today, I'm having a special sale for today only on my Etsy.

Just for today everything on my Etsy is buy-one-get-one! If you buy something today you can choose an additional item of equal or lesser value for free! All you have to do is purchase something at regular price (i.e., the other current sale of 15% off won't apply to this purchase), and then convo me what additional item (of equal or lesser value) you'd like for free!

Desperate times call for desperate measures, so y'all take advantage! Today only!

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

My dad bought a new fake Christmas tree this year, so he gave us his old one, and last night Reed helped to decorate his first Christmas tree. I'm pretty sure we had a real one at Reed's first Christmas, but he was so young he didn't know anything about it (he was about three weeks old). The last couple of Christmases we haven't had a tree at all.

He had a great time, and used his huge soup ladel to pass ornaments to Jason and me as we hung them on the tree.

This weekend we're having a Christmas potluck dinner at our house and I'm really looking forward to it. I'll be cooking my very first turkey ever. Luckily my mom will be helping me, so it shouldn't be too disastrous.

I'm having a sale on Etsy , so if you've ever thought about buying something but haven't gotten around to it, now is the time. I've been selling some things lately, so I figured a Christmas sale might really get things going.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Three years.


You have been on this earth now for three years, and you still can't make mama some bean nachos. If it weren't for the way you smile at me when I peer over your crib at you in the mornings I would sell you to the gypsies.

I hope that one day you will either have forgotten or be able to forgive me for the way that I am sometimes, for my absence from your life when I am hiding under the covers crying, for my obsession with laundry and house-cleaning, for my occasional inability to unwind.

And for drinking all the bourbon. I'm sorry I can't share the bourbon.

Reed, you continue to amaze me at every turn. You can count to fifty (although your fifty has several fourty sevens), you can count to ten in Spanish, you can spell your name (you spell it with three e's, but hey, that's how you say it), you poop in the potty (most of the time), and color inside the lines (when you feel like it). You are so smart. You got that from me, not your daddy. But you got your devestating good looks from your daddy, so I figure he wins.

You eat raw oatmeal and raw pasta. That's all I know to say about that.

This year you and Jude have entered into a battle to the death over who can keep daddy's attention the longest, who can take steal more of the other's toys, and who can make me hit myself in the face with a frying pan the most times. YOU'RE BOTH WINNING, and I now look like my mother carried me on a papoose board facing the wrong way for several years.

This year daddy has not only lost his mind, but also he's really not that interested in being married to me any more because he has decided that he wants to go to Burning Man. While reading up on it so that I could pretend that I considered it I ran across an article called "Surviving Burning Man With Your Kids". Reed, I either love you intensely or am a terrible mother because reading that list, just imagining having you out on the playa in all the dust and confusion made me hyperventilate, made my chest get tight, made me panic just a little bit. Why anyone would take their children to that event is beyond me, but if I was ever going to take you the only way I could handle it is if I put a leash on you. And daddy says that's cruel.

This year I've fallen further into my role as Turning Into My Mom and you have fallen further into your role as Turning Into Me, because I find myself suddenly bursting into operatic versions of Wiggles songs, Christmas songs, ANY songs, and you immediately throw yourself onto the floor and kick and writhe as you say, "NOOOOOOOOOO, STOOOOOOOOOOOP, MOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMY!!!!!!" Thanks a lot, God, for simultaneously teaching me about irony, the joy of irritating my child, and how much I love my mother.

Reed, I can't wait to see more of the ways you will change, terrify, and teach me. Your ability to charm everyone around you, to assert yourself and be yourself and still be lovely and sweet (sometimes) is enviable to me. I love you more than I could ever describe, more than I could have ever imagined that I was able. If I can keep loving a person who tells me that they are going to kick me in the face, it must be real. I hope that I can live up to even half of my own expectations as your mother.

I also hope that one day you feel an intense urge to burst into "Walking In a Winter Wonderland" opera-style, and someone is there to writhe around on the floor when you do it. When that happens, I hope you think of me.

I love you,

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Rearin' his ugly head.

Jeez, after all that nice stuff I wrote yesterday about my child, then last night was terrible. AWFUL. HE WAS AWFUL.

Besides "I'm going to punch you in the face!", besides "I'm going to kick you in the face!", besides "I'm going to kick your ass out!", he said "I'm going to spit on you!" and then he actually spit on Jason, a big, gooey strand of spit.

We are totally horrified at this point.

There are some things that Reed does that I know where they come from, that I know he got from Jason ("ass") or Kane and Jude (wrestling, playfully hitting, gleefully jumping on top of people) or me (the crazy, the attitude, THE CRAZY), but these are phrases and attitudes that he did not get at home.

We've questioned our choice of daycare before, but so far we've continued to send him and tried not to worry about it because it's very difficult to do anything else about it.

Now that I have a job we hope that our finances will get better, but right now they are in the shitter pretty badly, to the tune of about -$300, with the next payday about eight days away.

Reed is absolutely worth any amount of money, more than money, and I would do anything to keep him safe and sound. But I've said before when there's no money, there's no money.

There is a daycare right across the street from where I work now and I've called and they have a slot, but it would mean about $50 more a week, about $200 more a month. Can we do it? I don't know. I can spout off about Reed's importance all I want, but if we can't come up with the money to pay the daycare, they won't let him stay, and I'll have to stay home from work, and I'll eventually get fired.

That right there is called The Illustration of How My Brain Works.

So that's where we are right now- PANICKED. UNSURE. WORRIED. BEATEN DOWN.

And now I have to go home to a toddler who's going to spit on me and then kick my ass out. I can't get a break.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008


This Saturday is Reed's third birthday. We bought him a tiny skateboard and some knee- and elbow-pads, and I can't wait to give them to him. I am not looking forward to all the injuries, but watching him learn will be fun.

I can't believe what a little dude he is now. He watches Batman and plays with (toy) swords and guns. Then, out of no where, he'll ask, "Can my baby have these? My baby wants to play with this. Can we go get me a baby?"

Kids are WEIRD, and the more you think you know them the less predictable they become.

Occasionally, just every now and then, he'll snuggle up with me and, without warning, turn to me and say, "I love you, mommy." And it makes me feel so overwhelmed, so happy, so imperfect and incapable of doing everything that I want to do for him, all at the same time. He told me the other night, "I'm yo friend and I'm daddy's friend. Yaw my friends."

My hope is that one day I'll be able to look back on all of this through the eyes of a woman who has raised her child, a woman who looks at her grown, happy, healthy child and knows she did the best she could and knows "the best she could" did enough to make him sane and normal and competent. I want so much for him to be joyous and unafraid and caring and kind. I hope that I have the stamina and humility to instill all of that in him.

And I hope that the crazy in my family runs only in the girls. I would truly love it, would be content with my life, if Reed lives a life devoid of the desire/instinct to stab himself in the eye, hit himself in the face with a shovel, or throw himself into the floor and writhe around for a while.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

And here is where I empty the contents of my brain onto the page:

I have been reflecting lately on my life, especially the past year or so, on mistakes and opportunities and luck and misfortune. These past eighteen or twenty months have been so hard, so excrutiating. So many bad things have happened over the past little while, both things that are my fault and things that are beyond my control. I am absolutely exhausted, tired of all of this, tired of life, and the only thing that keeps me going is the feeling like maybe we are over the proverbial hump, maybe things are about to get better.

I worry about Kane and Jude quite a bit, about their well-being, their grades, their ability to grow into functioning human beings. I went to drop off the child support check yesterday, and their step-dad kept narrowing his eyes at me and then looking at the check, narrowing his eyes and then looking at the check. Then light dawned on marble head and he laughed and said, "I didn't recognize you. Okay."

Their step-dad, who has been around for about five years and has been married to Kane and Jude's mom for a year-and-a-half and who has seen and spoken to me countless times, DIDN'T RECOGNIZE ME. I suppose maybe he was off his meds yesterday.

Kane and Jude are telling us that they might move to Montevallo, which is great because it's even further away, and we've already been assigned the task of doing all the driving, all the picking up and dropping off, and I am not feeling happy about it. Besides the driving, Kane and Jude are both doing well in school, making friends and good grades and enjoying themselves, and I'm wondering why they feel the need to jerk them up and send them yet another school. Those people move roughly once a year, and I'm not sure that that's healthy for the kids. I realize that plenty of people move around and the kids will survive, but I'm thinking if they're not moving for a job or the military or to be closer to their families, is it really necessary?

Jason and I have just celebrated our fifth anniversary, and I'm proud and grateful that we've made it. Marriage is hard when times are good; when times are tough it can be really very difficult to remember to work as a team, to think like a team. I'm sorry that I haven't always been a team player, Jason; I'm working on it. Happy anniversary. Thank you for being on my team.

Reed's godmother just got engaged to one of the sweetest boys I've ever known. The only advice that I would presume to offer you is to pray to God for patience and perseverence, both of you, because there are moments when those are the only things that will keep you from smacking each other in the head with a hammer. Also, hide the hammer from each other. That helps, too.

My job has really turned things around for me in at least a few ways. I mean, I suddenly find myself a salaried employee with a stable company that builds software. Here's to you, universe: you really know how to confuse the shit out of me. I was voted most tech-savvy on Facebook; I put that on my resume, and I'm sure that's why I got this job.

Monday, December 01, 2008


Ah, you learn something new every day.

For example, yesterday I learned that I am indeed capable of looking a teenaged girl in the face and calling her stupid.

I was leaving my mom's and there were a group of kids playing football in the street. As I started driving towards them they all shuffled out of the way.

Except for one girl. Who proceeded to turn and look at me, standing in the middle of my lane, and just calmly watch as I drove towards her.

I slowed and slowed until my car was about four feet away from her and I came to a complete stop. She stood there for a few more seconds, laughed, shrugged, and moved to the side. I pulled up beside her, rolled down my window, and said, "Are you trying to be cute?" She laughed again and said, "No." I replied, "Okay, because it's pretty STUPID to just stand in the middle of the street in traffic."

Suddenly she looked really embarrassed, which took me totally by surprise as I was expecting some kind of "Talk to the HAND, GRANDMA" comment.

Then, as we pulled away, Reed said, "What did you do to that girl?" And then I felt guilty.