Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Cold, hard

We're friends, right? So I can talk with you about this.

I'm seriously considering signing up with the CCCS. Here's the deal: When the Ex and I split up, we had a fairly high debt going on. We'd just finished the basement in our house the year before, to make room for the Girl's arrival. On top of that, there was some manic behavior going on, and nothing runs up a credit card like some good ol' fashioned manic behavior, coupled with some good ol' fashioned passive-aggressive denial. Yummy.

Anyway, loads o' debt. Then we had the whole, wow, one income thing; the wow, I'm depressed, let's spend some money thing; the wow, I'm selling my house and the market just tanked see where we're going. And it occurs to me, after having some talks with family who have done the CCCS thing, that I would be willing to be bereft of the safety net of credit for 5 or so years in order to be done with this debt. It's really the only thing that's killing me, and you know, I was one of those people who got sucked into it in college and never really got out. I make a decent living, and if I didn't have the credit debt, frankly, I could make it completely on my own, without child support or anything. Which for some strange reason I would really, really like to be able to do--just in case one found it necessary.

I'm not even a big spender--it's the damned interest rates that kick your ass and turn you into Sisyphus. When my kids go to college, I don't want to be in worse shape than they are. And I certainly don't want to be in the financial position my mother is in now.

I know there are some stigma attached to using the service, but frankly I don't give a crap. I want out, and better a little discomfort now than going bankrupt in a few years.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

The Buddethodist Girl's Guide to Lent

I'm not Catholic, but I like Lent. (You might have figured out that I am sort of a Global Girl when it comes to world religions. Why stick with just one? How dull.)

This year, I'm giving up The Drama.

I like the idea of getting rid of something. Simplifying, you know? I don't think it's about giving up something you really like, as some sort of sacrificial group therapy. I think it's about giving up something you're sort of addicted to, but that actually gets in the way of your life moving forward.

So this year, I'm giving up The Drama. This might sound easy, but folks, I am The Drama Queen. No, I'm The Drama Empress. Sultana of Drama.

Life is friggin' busy, and that won't stop. I work full time, on top of taking care of the kids part time during the day. But I've also got a lot of support and resources. We've got some interesting personal challenges in the form of the health of some family members--Borderline Personality Disorder Is Fun!--but again, we've got a lot of resources, we've got insurance, and everyone involved is doing what they can to get help and to get healthier. I have more debt than I'd like, but I have the ability to make it better. I'm a crappy housekeeper, and there are a lot of areas in my life I'd like to run more smoothly.

Giving up The Drama won't change any of that. But I think it will change how much of it I can handle, how able to cope I feel. The Drama is tempting. The Drama is the way I learned to cope, back when I didn't actually have any control over the things in my life or what I did with them. But I'm a grownup now. I'm not stuck in my parents' marriage, I'm not trapped by other people's choices--and when those choices affect me, I have the power to follow through with my own reactions.

When you're a kid who can't control your environment or what the adults in your life do around you or to you, The Drama's as good a way of coping as any. But when you're an adult, The Drama leads to The Self Pity leads to The Defiant Inactivity or The Panicked Inactivity. One thing it doesn't lead to is The Zen.

I still want The Zen.

So. The Drama is a nice, comfortable place to be. But it's got to go.

What are you getting rid of?

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

F is for February, Filler...

[The Boy is reading to his sister. (On a side note, gee, what could the book be about? Sigh.)]
B: ... A princess is a polite young lady. Don't you want to be a princess?
B: [in a world-weary tone] Gigi. That was a rhetorical question.

[Before school today]
PK: ... your soft pants are right there on the stool.
G: I wanna skirt!
PK: That's fine, but when we go to drop off B at school, you should put on pants. It's cold out.
G: [running in the opposite direction, shouting back at me in her best 13-year-old-punk-rock-voice] NO! GOD knows everything! YOU don't know everything! YOU don't know ANYthing!

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Takin' your time, huh?

Okay, so I'm a total tool for cracking up over this ad campaign, but I can't help myself. Sometimes I just go for the low-brow funny.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Mirror, mirror

"'...she dreamed sweet dreams of the handsome prince who would carry her off on his horse to his castle in the clouds.' Oh, brother. You know, honey, you don't need some prince to get a castle. You can build your own castle."

"Nuh-uh, Mama. Princesses can't build castles."

"YES they can!"

"Mama. No. There's no such thing as princesses."

"Oh. Oh, I see."


"'It was a sweet little, tiny little house in the woods. My, what an untidy sight met her eyes! The sink was full of unwashed dishes and everything was covered with dust.' Sounds like our house."

"No, Mama. Because that house is very, very little, and our house is BIG!"

"Right. 'Let's clean their house, said Snow White.' Dang, I wish Snow White would come clean our house."

"Ma-MA. There's. No. Such. Thing. As. Snow. White! Because, I saw the book before. That's how I know it."


"Mama. If someone was coloring and it was everywhere you would NOT say, 'Oh, what a messy scribbler!' You would say, 'Never worry, you will learn and learn!'"

"You're right, that would be much nicer."

"Yes, otherwise you would hurt someone's feelings."


[minutes pass]

"Mama. If you hit someone in the head with this bouncy ball, you would NOT say, 'I am going to hit you in the head again and again!' You would say, 'Oh. Oh, no. I am so sorry that I hit you with the bouncy ball. I will not do it again.'"


"Yes, because it's important to be nice to people."

"Good idea."

[minutes pass]

"Mom. You are a special, special guest today." [I swear I don't watch talk shows or any other type of adult tv around them. I haven't seen Oprah in years. Where do they get this?]

Monday, February 05, 2007


My son vacuumed his own room, and his sister's. Lovely.


I dig Legos out of the carpet. "One day," I say, "one day, when you are grown up, I will say, 'Oh, how I wish my little boy was still around leaving Legos everywhere."

"Mom," he sighs, "I am NEVER going to leave this house, don't you worry. I will always, always live here with you."

"Well, honey, you know you will always be welcome in my house. But if one day you change your mind and decide you'd like to live somewhere else, I will understand."

"I won't! I won't ever change my mind. Well. Maybe I will. One day."


The children are building a fort behind the oversized chair in the empty room that will be their grandmother's living room when she moves in. They're singing a song. They sing, "It's a belly, it's a button! It's a beeeellllly, it's a buuuttttoooon!"


For no apparent reason, the Girl now calls her brother "Coco Puff". He calls her "Midget Fun-Fun". I do not know where these names come from.

Friday, February 02, 2007


What's the absolute perfect way to end a week in which you worked until 2:00 or 3:00 a.m. most nights, did the Ex-having-a-nervous-breakdown thing (again), and couldn't seem to find your own ass? Have your kid get jumped by three other boys from his class, you say? Huh, that's just what I was thinking.


But, you know, it's 2 minutes away from this week being, for all intents and purposes, over. The Ex told me this evening that he is doubling his therapy time as he realizes he can't go on dealing with really hard stuff by bottoming out; then he took the Boy to a monster truck rally. (The Boy: "Do we have any green marker? Because maybe Bone Crusher will be there! He's my favorite! And I could color under my eyes all green 'cause I'm a fan!" It's a mystery to me.) The Girl and I had girls' night and ate suckers while taking bubble baths. The work that caused the crazy nights is all but done. And the Boy's teacher is taking care of the Situation. Better yet, when I told him I was proud of him for his response of not getting into a fight, he said, in that offhanded way, "Yep, I told a teacher and went on with my life!" By that point, he was done with it, as he'd been home for 5 minutes and CyberChase was on. I, however, was shaking for at least 15 minutes. On the one hand, he wasn't hurt, he's over it, and heck knows he's thrown a temper-fueled kick now and then. I am not the overly sensitive mother. It was the three-on-one, let's chase the kid down and kick him thing, on top of my worries over him and his peer interactions in the first place, and let's be honest, my own miserable awkward elementary school experience, that made my heart twist up faster than a pair of granny panties on the fast spin cycle. Oh well.

Hey! You know what else is funny? When you're late for a flight and the airport garage and lot you usually park in is full because THE SNOW WILL BE HERE UNTIL JUDGEMENT DAY and you have to park in the next available lot and when you come back, it's dark and you get all turned around and it's 5 degrees and you're wandering around like a lost soul, every now and then passing another confused looking popsicle like ships in the night--ships with no navigational systems--and just as you think, hell, they're gonna find my dead frozen body on aisle Q2, a million coyotes start howling from the field next to the lot and it sounds like they're in Q3, and you think, "Huh. This would be funny if I could feel my legs." But once you actually find the car and are eating your Starbucks' chocolate covered graham crackers that you broke down and bought at the airport--yeah, it's pretty effing funny.

Another perfect way to end this week: Incoherent posting.