Do you feel it, the unexplained chill in the air. Yes, it’s still winter, since the ground-hog saw his shadow and we are looking at six more weeks of winter, but the chill I’m talking about is not weather related, my friends, hell has frozen over! For the past six and a half years, I have co-existed with Ursula, “The Girl”‘s mom, usually doing all I can to avoid her. She has always been that “fake nice” for show when we are in public, but 1:1 dealings have been short, judgmental and self-serving, at that is the nicest way I can put it. As “The Girl” has gotten older, things have eased some, mostly because contact with Ursula is less frequent and when it happens it has an actual purpose, not just a way to maintain her control over my now husband and our lives.
However, over the past week thing have taken a rare turn in the blended family world. First Ursula was at my office meeting with a group completely unrelated to me, I actually had no idea she was here. She sent me a text, upfront admitted it was shameless and asked if I could validate parking for and a few co-workers. I told her sure, they work for a non-profit, I didn’t consider it a favor to her as much as a good deed for a good cause. Plus, when I meet her in the lobby, she was very kind in noticing and complimenting my weight loss, which was very nice to hear, especially from her given her history with struggling with her own weight issues.
The next day I got a call from her on my cell, which NEVER happens unless The Girl is with her and her phone is not handy. Also, The Girl was in school, so there was no reason to be calling me, but I answered thinking maybe it was an emergency of some sort and she couldn’t contact my husband. To my surprise, it was a very nice and civil heads up. The organization she works for is having a fundraising event and when The Girl was with Ursula at a planning meeting she mentioned to her mom that the work they were doing for the vent was right up my alley and that I was very good with the creative parts they need to finish. She asked Ursula if she could invite me to join the team or if that would be too awkward. Ursula, who for all her faults has always acknowledged how much her daughter loves me and the nice things I do for her, she said that was fine. The call was to let me know The Girl would be inviting me and that she had no issues at all, they would welcome my help.
I agreed to go. One, for The Girl, she was very excited I accepted and also thanked me for being so nice in helping with the parking. Second, I need to volunteer for a cause for my company’s wellness program, so this was an easy way to do that. Last night I picked the The Girl up after school and headed to her mom’s office. Ursula as very nice, made me feel welcomed and that my assistance was appreciated. Then, just when she thought I had let my guard down or become numb due to hell freezing over, she hit me with a zinger, her backhand way of insulting others with a sugar sweet spin or in a joking manner thinking people don’t notice. Some may not, I do. After complimenting my input, she added “too bad you have horrible taste in men”- a very obvious dig as my husband. I did not miss a beat, two belles can play this game, I smiled with a slight tilt of my head and said “Just following your lead Ursula”. We both gave a fake laugh and moved on. The rest of the evening was productive and dare I say, pleasant. I enjoyed the project and would do it again if asked.
When I got home I shared with my husband how the night went, horrible taste in men and all. I told him I really hope this is the new path we are on, for The Girl mostly, as it has to be nice to have your blended family together peacefully, and for the adult. Six years of tension is a lot to deal with and sometimes you just have to LET IT GO! Yes, the song from Frozen is running through my head, guess it just goes with the icy territory.