Dick & Jane: The Saga Continues

I honestly have no idea at what point the saga was when last I posted about my poor friends, Dick & Jane. In that time, things have gone from bad to worse. And when we all thought it could not bet any worse, it did. Big time.

The girls, Mary (17) and Sue (15) have been living full-time with their mother, Medusa, for 15 months. This arrangement, which was to be temporary to allow the girls a “break” from the stress of the vastly different rules between the household, did not play out as planned. The “plan” had been while they would not spend every other week at Dick and Jane’s home, they would spend time with their father on the weekends and a dinner mid-week as schedules allowed. Immediately the younger, Sue, refused to spend any time with Dick, in addition to refusing his calls or reply to his text messages. Initially Mary did spend time with her father and for the first time in many months seemed to be relaxed and opening up more. Dick, while missing his daughters, felt that his personal sacrifice was worth it if they were happy and thriving. That feeling was short-lived.

It became apparent that Sue was not attending school, the claims had been her “health issues”. In first 100 days of schools she had missed over 40 days and had not gone to the doctor for any of the medical issues Medusa claimed she was suffering with. It had gotten so bad that the school called in Dick and Medusa to discuss the situation, which had been done the year prior as it had been an on going issue. Sue somehow managed to get caught up and attend class enough to be promoted to 9th grade, which would mean a new school, the same that Mary had been attending for the past two years. Mary, who has issues with depression and anxiety, had thrived her freshman and sophomore years. I think getting into her own environment actually helped Mary quite a bit. Not only was she doing well in school, she was responding more to her therapy, even joining and participating in group therapy with other teens with similar issues. All in addition to bonding more with her father.  As is often the case, that progress was short-lived, for both girls.

Over the summer, Sue battled with Medusa and claimed she had taken some pills, resulting in a trip to the ER and being committed on suicide watch. Medusa didn’t feel the need to inform Dick until it was all said and done, as it always the case with this woman. By this time Mary had stopped communicating with Dick as well, for reasons that were not explained, but the guess is mom was feeling hurt that Mary was bonding with her father, the man Medusa has claimed abandoned his children and “dumped” all the parenting responsibilities on her. Not a week after this “suicide” attempt, Medusa was calling Dick asking for money for a camp trip for Sue. He said he didn’t feel a minimally supervised camp with no mental health professionals was a good plan for a girl who had recently been committed to a psychiatric facility on suicide watch and was unable to attend school for nearly half the school year due to extreme and untreated medical issues.

At one point over the summer Sue had reached out to Dick and wanted to see him. He was happy to hear from her and quick to make plans. They met for coffee, it was very casual with discussion of making additional plans in the near future. But as had happened with Mary, Sue stopped replying to her father’s texts with no explanation and weeks went by with no communication at all. When her therapist at the time asked about the meeting and plans to spend more time with Dick, she simply said she was planning to see him “for this birthday”, which was over a month away. And of course, his birthday came and went, with no word from either daughter, just one more heartbreak to add to the list.

Once school started, the second year living with their mother full-time, things seemed to race downhill at a frenzied pace. Almost immediately Sue was missing school, sometimes full days, other time just missing classes due to her anxiety. Mary was also struggling, she was missing school and her grades were slipping. It was almost as if having her younger sister at the same school, not attending class or having to worry about her grades was making Mary not care to do those things either.  Dick was more in the loop at this school and it was quickly apparent Sue was not going to succeed. Meetings with teachers and the administration followed. Medusa made excuses that Sue’s medical issues and anxiety were the cause and for all their efforts nothing seemed to help, yet she had missed many therapy appoints, wanted to yet again change therapists (for the 3rd time in less than two years) and had not had Sue into see her family doctor specialists for her physical issues. It was determined the school could not help her get caught up on her missing assignments, especially given that her mother was not confident that she would be able to attend school with any more regularity than she had been to date. Both Sue and Medusa suggested online schooling for the remainder of the term, which would be about two months, including the winter break.

As if that weren’t bad enough, within a week of Sue being released from the obligation of attending classes, Mary’s struggles became worse, to the point that in a meeting about Sue, Medusa mentioned, almost in passing, that she felt Mary was suicidal and she was worried about her. Once again, a flurry of worry, then wait, as once the discussion turned to committing Mary for a suicide watch came up, things were not “so bad”. At the end of the day, Mary was committed. Once her medications were adjusted and she showed signs she was responsive and no danger to herself, she was sent home.

So, in 15 months, being with their mother as all claimed would be “best” for both girls, both have been committed to facilities due to suicide attempts or thoughts. One has all but been kicked out of school and has done very little of the online work, so the odds of her catching up are slim to done. It’s obvious to Dick, Jane and the professionals that things can not continue as they are, so come the first of the year, there are going to be changes….changes that are going to make things MUCH worse before they get better, but with luck, they will get better….eventually.

Stay tuned….


When You Feel Your Life Skills Are Lacking

Point one, big, fat, epic FAIL on posting more blogs. My last post was in August… FOUR months ago! I had really hoped to get back on track, to use this blog as a means to purge that which was emotionally weighing me down- but more shit got piled on and making time for the blog was the least of my issues.

I had my knee surgery- while recovery eventually went very well, it was a rocky start. Unlike most people who have a spinal block that keeps them from feeling the excruciating pain upon waking up in the recovery room, my block did not take and woke up screaming. Three days in the hospital (it was planned for me to go home that night…HA) and finally my pain was managed and I could start physical therapy enough to manage with a walker… A WALKER, talk about feeling old. After a few days at home my pain seemed to shift, due to a blood clot. All is good now, no more clot, I’ve finished therapy and other than a nice 8″ scar down the front of my leg, no one would know, not even a limp. Of course, thanks to the complications, I’m not rushing to schedule the other knee, which needs to be replaced as the first one. With luck this will be like child-birth, with time I will forget the pain and just the happiness of the pain-free knee….but that time has not yet come, so we are not scheduling anything.

Work is good, for the most part. I feel like I’m not going to get a pink slip at any moment or rather I did until earlier today when I learned that a few people had been let go first thing this morning. I hate when that happens, any time, but around the holidays it just seems so much worse. Also, it makes the overall mood around the office a bit more depressing. For the better part of the past year a dark cloud has been over the office, with rumors of the sale, then the actual sale itself with many unanswered questions that lingered. Things were just settling into the “new normal”, and not the cuts. Guess nothing is really ‘safe’.

With all this going on, I’ve been “off”, physically and emotionally, which I would think is understandable. I feel this has put a strain on my relationship with the hubby- the worst is I don’t feel we are communicating like we once did. He has a new friend at work, which I am happy about, I don’t feel couples should have no lives outside of each other, however there is something suffocating about them. I have tried to explain this to him with being mean or judgmental, but its like the more I try to explain how I feel, the more the pushes me do things with them. I’m almost to the point that I don’t want to do anything with this couple, which I know will only create a nightmare situation for me at home. I hate feeling a disconnect at home- that should be my happy place, my place to not stress over every word, to be myself, flaws and all. I feel like I’m just failing in this area and I’m not sure how to fix it. I don’t like conflict, especially at home, but I guess I’m going to have put on my big girl panties and have the tough discussion that will likely result in a huge argument.

Maybe I should ask Santa for a life coach… or someone to simply many my life for me!



Too much of everything…

It’s been a long time, too long. I’m in one of those places in my life were everything seems to have reached maximum capacity all at the same time. I felt like I was being dragged down by the literal weight of life, desperately searching for a corner of nothing to clear my cluttered mind. In my panicked state, I felt that my blog was just another “to do” on my list, when the reality is, this blog IS my corner of calm. Here I can unload- free of judgment or discussion. I can vent, I can joke- I can unburden my mind when it needs it the most. So, I’m back!

So much has happened since my last entry. The last few blogs were about a troubled time in my otherwise rock solid marriage. We are fine. Looking back I think the fact that so much of what weighed me down was closing in, I made a bad situation much worse. In some ways it was my way to control and cope. While I felt I had no control over so much going on in my world, that situation, how I perceived it, how I reacted to it, how I gave it importance was completely in my control. While it was a negative, there was a strength in feeling in control, of something.

On the list of “Things Beyond My Control”- first up is work. My company was going through a transition, a sale and for all the don’t worry discussions with my boss, I was very worried that when the dust settled, a pink slip and farewell cake was in my near future. Along with that dread and fear, boredom. I’m a right brain kind gal, I need to have projects to occupy my thoughts, without them, I tend to wonder and that often leads to over thinking that which I have no control. It seemed like months of hurry up and wait as the transition was planned and finally executed. Much of that time I felt like a human mushroom, in the dark, being fed small amounts of bullshit, just enough to keep me alive, but not enough to thrive. I was on alone in my boredom, so at least there was a sense of fearful community in my mushroom world. At the end of the day, the clouds of doom parted and I was happy to learn I was in fact safe and the changes to my immediate world were minimal, or so I thought. I have taken on a new group, which is a challenge on many levels. The work itself is fairly easy and without challenge, however, righting the wrongs of the past can be difficult for some. I’m always amazed when someone leaves a company and you learn how crazy their manner of doing things was. I’m one to find the most efficient way to manage a task, to make it easy for all parties, but others like to create busy work and drama for themselves. No thank you. Needless to say, the added work has been another reason my blogging was put on hold.

Next up on the list- my health. While I talked in many blogs about the challenges of living with a debilitating condition, things have gotten so much worse. I am scheduled for a knee replacement in a few weeks. Nothing makes you feel “old” like needing replacement parts. While preparing for that, my shoulder decided my knee was getting too much attention and decided to just stop working, or so it felt like it. The list of what is going on there is crazy- but long story short, its painful, REALLY painful all the time. Hoping it improves with physical therapy before my knee surgery, as it’s the opposite shoulder, so I kinda need it to be working and pain-free! And let me tell you, non-stop pain drains you. I could sleep 24/7 and still need a nap. Everything feels like a struggle.

And next we have “The Girl”- who, I can’t believe, starts high school NEXT WEEK! She has had a crazy busy summer, with cheer, swim, camp, a job and a typical teen social life. I am so glad the relationship with her mom has greatly improved over the past several months as well, because it takes everyone being on the same page and working together to keep this girl where she needs to be, when she needs to be there and with the proper gear. I have no clue how parents with multiple kids, in multiple activities do it. There is one of her, four of us, plus the bench of siblings and grandparents who have picked up a shift here and there. Its exhausting just thinking about it…and the school year hasn’t even started.

With the improved relationship with Ursula comes volunteer activities that due to my Virgo personality I’ve taken on too much. I am working with her on both the annual function for a charity that is her job and fundraising for the cheer team for school. I need to learn to say no, but when people find out you are willing to help, the requests don’t stop and before you know it, you are way over extended. Hence, no time to blog!!!

And on top of all that I feel is going on in my life, I feel my friends have so much going on with them and I need to be there to support them, as they do for me. Dick and Jane, god love them, they still have the nightmare situation with his daughters and evil ex-wife. I could write books on that topic, but the short version for now is the mother is attempting to find every excuse for the girls’ behavior that isn’t her parenting and hatred of their father, she has one convinced she’s autistic and the other that she has fibromyalgia. Neither condition has every been mentioned by the many doctors, therapist and specialists she has taken the girls to, all on Dick’s dime. Another friend has been struggling with her own health issues, as well as her mother’s cancer diagnosis and father’s failing health. Another friend is mourning the loss of her mother to a sudden and tragic passing, made all the more tragic as questions of her own father’s involvement loom over the family. When I type that all out, I really feel like a whiny baby for complaining about my overwhelming life!

So, that is my summer in a nutshell. Sleep, work, stress, repeat. I feel I can’t take much if any “me time”, so the least I can do is get back to blogging, if nothing else, to free my mind and maybe the rest of this stuff won’t feel so overwhelming.


Life After Betrayal

In a strong marriage you have no secrets from each other. Most, if not all, married couples share secrets between them alone, those things that no one outside the couple unit needs to know, for whatever reason. Each part counts on the other to guard the secrets of the marriage from the outside world. I’m not talking about psycho couples who have a drifter buried in the backyard, but normal couple secrets like what goes on behind the bedroom door or how much money is in the savings account. When you marry you stand before your family, friends and god, if you are into that sort of thing, and promise to love, cherish and honor each other, to me, spoken or not, this means keeping your shared marital secrets.

In my marriage, as in so many other, my husband is my best friend. That puts more importance on those  secrets, both as husband and best friend, I look to him to have my back, to protect me in all aspect, as I protect him. I think that is why I am struggling so much with something that has happened,  I feel double betrayed and it hard for me to work past the feeling of hurt and anger to plan for the next phase in our lives together.

I will say, while I hate what he did in sharing something that was private between the two of us,  I love him more. This is not a ‘deal breaker’ offense, no one is packing, no one is calling an attorney, no one will be fighting over custody of the dogs. As a couple we have discussed, between us, things that intrigued us, that if given the opportunity we may step outside our comfort zone and try. Nothing illegal or immoral, just exciting compared to our average life, a life we love, but still, you get it. Recently the opportunity presented itself while I was out-of-town with friends. It was a perfect storm of opportunity, safety, being relaxed and comfortable. I stepped outside the box, knowing my husband was going to love hearing about his brave, adventurous wife.

The betrayal was, in his enthusiasm, he shared this secret meant only for the two of us with a friend. A friend who in no way had indicated an interest in anything of this nature. Not just “a friend”, but one of my closest friends, who I see at least once a week. Then there was the way the information was presented, in a way that made me look very bad, as if I went out-of-town looking to behave badly, which was not the case at all. So now I feel awkward about facing her and am angry with him of putting the burden on her of knowing things never intended to be shared.

In the aftermath of learning this I was hurt, angry and sad. I felt shame for something I have no reason to be shameful of. I felt I could no longer trust the one person I should be able to count on the most. The more he tried to explain, the more angry I became, as I felt he was trying to excuse his behavior and discount my pain. I don’t know how to get past this, part of me want to just go on with life as normal, but another resents how easily he can pretend nothing happened. I don’t know when a happy medium will come into our life, a life I feel is worth fighting for, this will not break us, but the cracks will take time to mend.

I hate this feeling. I hate the feeling of loss for the strong bond we shared. I hate feeling I can’t trust him. I hate thinking about what the future holds, as that seemed so clear only a few days ago. If I had a time machine and could go back, I would do everything different, even though I did nothing wrong, I would not have given him the ability to hurt me, to hurt US like he has.

The Truth About Lies

Funny how things come full circle. I started this blog almost a year ago, mainly as a way to purge my thoughts of a house guest from hell, a “friend” who had created a web of lies he called a life, but showed his true self during a visit to my home. Due to my connections with this person, I didn’t want to put him on blast, to out him to our social circle which included people from non-profit organizations we both worked to help (or so I thought). I had my blog, my safe place to purge, to vent. However, in the past year this person’s web of lies came crashing down around him. Grains of truth started to pour throw the cracks as his lies crumbled. It wasn’t long before he was excised from my social circle, I had hoped for good.

The thing about people whose life a life built on lies, they rarely stay gone for long. They believe their lies and believe if they repeat them to enough be people, others will be believe them too. This person resurfaced last week. He is spreading more lies, playing the victim and attempting to discredit a lot of good people and the work they do. He is nothing but a con man and attention whore. And to further his lies, he is involving thousand of people via social media. People who have been shielded from his true self, who myself and others have not wanted to drag into the drama, as we have truth on our side. But he went there. He posted all over social media lies for no reason other to make himself the victim. Why do people do that? Why must adults act like children for the sole purpose of attention.

And the clean up is exhausted. Answering questions, defending yourself and others. Providing proof of your actions, actions taken to protect a group, actions you never thought would be questioned or turned into something so far off the mark it unrecognizable. But I will say, for those to take a step back, who looks at how both sides handle the situation, actions to speak louder than words. Some “friends” may have been lost along they way, but in reality, they were not friends. They were associates of convenience. People who were easily swayed, some by the drama that certain people are drawn to. Some with misplaced loyalty for a liar. The latter, they will one day be burned the way I was…and maybe they too will start a blog as a way to cope.

To be a kid again

Recently I was sick, a virus that hung on and morphed into bronchitis. What I have noticed about being sick like this as an adult, you don’t rebound from even a common cold like you do when you are young. Little kids can be sick, with a fever and every symptom known to man, take a dose of medication, a nap and they are good as new. I’ve determined for every sick day, it takes at least two days to recover…I’m still working on my recovery nearly 2 weeks in.

This got me thinking about the other things about being a kid that, in the moment, we take for granted but as adults we would love. Naps, kids HATE naps, fight naps and long for the day when they are no longer required to nap. I for one would LOVE to have nap time every day. A break to rest and recharge, my guess is my old ass wouldn’t be struggling to say up for the evening news if that was the case.

Next up: food. Sure, I could pay someone to plan and prepare my meals, but that is not realistic to the majority of us. Often kids complain about that is prepared for them, three meals a days, plus snacks, with no though or effort on their part. Half the time I skip breakfast simply because I run out of time while trying to get ready for work and leave the house on time. The “what’s for dinner” question is beyond dreaded for me at times. I go through phases when I do weekly meal planning and shop accordingly to ensure all the items needed are in the house. Yes, those weeks go much smoother and I know that is what I should do, but life happens and sometimes that planning just doesn’t happen.

Bills & Work. As a kid I woke up in my room, in my comfy bed. I was fortunate to never worry about where I would sleep or if the power would be on. Most kids are like I was and take those things for granted. Not having to work, to have everything you need or want provided for you. Being an adult, unless independently wealthy or a lottery winner (neither which apply to me), you must get a job to earn the money to provide all of that for yourself and often, others in your family. What a crock! I want to go back to having it all with no pressure to provide for it. I want to go back to the days when school was my ‘job’. I took for granted the benefit of experts sharing their knowledge with me and teaching me something new everyday. Back then I hated to spend my hours learning and reading, now I complain about having no time to simply read a “real book” and taking a class is a luxury and  expense I can’t afford right now.

Time with friends. As a kid you spend your days with your friends in school and playing after. Roller skating or the mall, maybe even a sleepover. Life was great. As adults, often your friends are spread across the country or even the world. We keep in touch via social media or the occasional get together. Even spending time with your local friends is tough with work and family obligations what used to planned in passing after class now required months of planning ahead to ensure schedules or child care are covered.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my life and short of that winning lottery ticket, there isn’t much I would change, but there are times that I think about how nice the freedom of youth would be…and a nap.  But on the upside, being able to drink wine and eat ice cream for dinner is a pretty nice trade-off.


Be forewarned, this is a liberal rant, as it was either write a blog or lose my shit on Facebook, as there has been a lot of stupid posted the past several days. I am not one to only be friends with people who think exactly as I do. That being said, this means that sometimes there will things others post that not only do I not agree with, but I want to reach though my computer screen and throat punch them for their stupidity. However, I have a rule, if they post something on their wall, no matter how much I disagree with it, I will not get into a debate. Their wall, their opinion. I usually go on by, just ignore it or if it something share from some ultra conservative site, I block all post from that site, not the person show shared. Today I found I was using the “snooze” option, which keeps a person’s post from hitting my timeline for 30 days, in hopes  they will come to their senses during that time. Now, if someone either shares to my wall or comments on a post I have made attacking my position with theirs, then it’s on like Donkey Kong and I will debate til the cows come home.

There is a lot going on in this country to be upset about. For the life of me I can’t wrap my head about anyone being AGAINST making our schools safer. Arming teacher is not the way to do this, but stronger gun laws and  making certain kinds of assault style weapons illegal are steps in the right direction. By the way, neither of those things takes anyone’s guns from them, as long as they own them legally, of course.  Anyone who is willing to go online and mock the brave, well-meaning and well spoken survivors of one of the most recent school shootings well, there is no reason for us to remain friends, in real life or on the internet.

Next up, abortion rights. Remind me, what year is it? Why are we still debating, arguing and spending tax payer money on this LEGAL procedure? Has the US population been  stalled by all the mass abortions that have taken place since Roe vs Wade? NO, it has not. Just like who I marry has zero impact on your marriage, one woman’s decision to terminate a pregnancy for her own personal reasons has zero impact on your ability to have one or a dozen kids if you so wish. I have never had an abortion and personally, I don’t think if faced with that decision I could do, but it’s my body and it would and SHOULD be my choice. There are so many other issues that need to be addressed in our state and federal governments, this is issue that was decided by the Supreme Court DECADES ago.

And last, but certainly not least….that fool occupying the Oval Office pretending to be President. I had hoped that either this man would pull his head out of his ass and lead this country with a level of respect for the office he holds or that the GOP leadership would have a set of balls between them and hold him accountable for his actions. Neither has happened and each week is just more embarrassing examples of how Trump is making a mockery of this great nation. From trade wars to his porn star mistress on 60 Minutes, its endless. 15 months in, more turnovers than any administration before him, dozens of positions simply unfilled, which no names even being submitted. Its like the Oval Office is nothing more than a reboot of his crappy TV show. And now, the new folks he is bringing in are from cable news shows, people who have given him good press. Most men are led by their penis, this orange nightmare is led by is ego…and that makes for a very unstable world leader.

So, enough already. Just STFU, if you don’t know what that means, Google it 😉 … you are giving me a headache!