Thinking too much.

Really wish I could shut my brain off, sometimes.

I worry about everything, relationships, my job, bills, the kids, the car, the animals. On the whole, I try to keep the worry to a minimum. Most of the time, I can do that. Today, it feels like I haven’t done it, not at all. The last two weeks have been very stressful. I want to keep the “Serenity” prayer in mind, because in the end, it comes down changing what I can and accepting what I can’t and somehow, knowing the difference.

Good friends help me keep the sanity to make it through.


reflections on the past

When I’ve been thinking about the future, it is hard not to look back to the past.   I am not fond of reflection, I find it difficult. It is tough not to look at the past and see the mistakes, even knowing that among the mistakes there were successes, as well.

So, my current question (thanks to my friend Heidi Sinderman) is would I rather be right or would I rather be happy? And that question is….awkward. I know in the past, it was more about being right for me, than about being happy. And it definitely affected the relationships I was in, the people I interacted with, the activities I would undertake. I have ended friendships because whatever the situation was, it was more important for me to be right about the issue, I wouldn’t budge. It has affected the romantic relationships I’ve been in, because I definitely enjoy being right in an argument, but that is also partly due to the fact that I don’t like to fight. I just want an issue to be dealt with quickly and to be done.

My new goal is have it be more important for me to be happy, than to be right. And not just for me to be happy, but for the people who are involved with me, who are in my life, to be happy too. What is that going to take? I am not sure, just gonna try to keep it in mind.


Dear Grumpybear,


Stop being a bastard.  I miss you.

Much love, me


On the subject of names…..

So, those of you who know me, know that my kids have a lot of names. A plethora of names.  A smorgasbord of names.  A veritable garden.  I gave my kids so many names that I should never ever hear, “Mom! My name is boring/dull/unusable for nicknames/there are 25 kids with my name-in my class!”

Unlike my children, I only had three names and the first two were completely unusable for nicknames. My first name was used by one other member of my school class and many in the other classes.  My middle name was given to fully 1/3 of the women roughly around the same generation I was born into, at my last poll. (Which, I admit, has been awhile, needless to say, I checked it out and my middle name is pretty widely used.)

I gave my kids all these names to avoid this problem.  I don’t expect anyone else to go to my tactical lengths, but I would hope that a few people out there are nodding in understanding. I am, testifiably, a crazy namer.  I am comfortable with this knowledge.

The reason the topic comes to hand is because I recently found out a former friend named their newest  child after their favorite actors.   The name is highly unusual, so that’s nice. No one will (leastwise, I don’t think anyone would) have the same name. It is individual.  I’m still, however, trying to wrap my brain around using actors as your naming picks.  I guess it’s like much of anything else, really.  The child may grow up not liking those actors though. “Wow, can’t believe Dad/Mom likes those guys, they’re not good!”  In defense of the parent, the actors are really good, but I digress.   It has made me curious about how other people decide how to choose a name.  Do you comb a baby book?  Choose a favorite author (this is so much more likely something I would do)?  Think about your favorite musicians?  Scan your family history for something interesting?  I tend to go with a little unusual naming and tie it into the  family background.

I talked to Darren about it and in the case that we should have a tiny bundle of love, we will not be using actors names.  I adore him, I do, but I don’t like any actor that much.  Fortunately, the idea also seemed a little foreign to him.  (Whew, saved on that one.)   

People are one thing, pets are another.  I like to use irony for pets.  My dog’s name is Spike and he’s half Pekingese and half Shih Tzu, so he’s all about 10 pounds.  He thinks he’s vicious.   I tend to feed his belief. 🙂


In the warm days of summer….

As you can tell, I’m not a committed blogger.  I want to be, it sounds wonderful and all, but the days, they just seem to go by so fast and overall, I’m not an adventurous person, so it doesn’t seem right  to post about the very same day that I had yesterday.   I quite enjoy reading other people’s blogs, but putting my own up….well.  Call me lazy, because that’s about as close as it gets.

So far, we’ve had a great summer.  The kids have spent a lot of time at their dad’s place, in anticipation of next summer’s possible migration to the West Coast.  He is happy about the extra time with them, though not the migration.  They are happy with the extra time with him, though not the migration.

Around the fourth of July, Darren came for a six-day visit.  I wanted a week, but six days, six days was the limit.   We tried to cram as much into those six days between the kids, family time and the holiday and alone time for the two of us.  It is simply never enough time to do all the things we would like to do.   We spent time with my grandmother, just a short visit, because her health doesn’t allow for more, but she apparently thought Darren was the bee’s knees, even though I don’t think he spoke that much at all.  (Maybe that was the reason – he’s already learned when to speak and when not to! Hah! I will pay for that one later.)

We have about a month to go before Darren and I have been ‘dating’ for a year.  It doesn’t really seem that long to me.  We’ve spent most of it alone, in separate nations, every night on this or that chat program, this or that phone number, for hours, talking about just about everything under the sun, but still together and alone at the same time.   It is hard, it is so hard, the distance.   We both despair about it and just keep looking at the future, when the distance won’t be bad or it won’t be there at all.   It can be hard to hold on to that some nights.  After bad days, I just really want him there.

It was pretty bad in December.  I had an incredibly early miscarriage.   I didn’t mention it to almost anyone, though Darren, my mom and a couple other people knew.  It’s not that either of us was ready in that stage of our relationship for that extra bundle of joy, but I was pretty crushed and Darren was much sadder than I thought he would be.   I’m getting old enough now that if I get pregnant, they’ll still consider me a more risky case.  At any rate, it was a sad time.   We got through it.   I have confidence that we’ll get through other traumas and trials.  I mean, if he can get beyond my two children….he can probably get beyond just about anything. 

The summer visit was a good time, all the way through. Darren just about expired one of the days, due to the humidity.  Poor Canadian! Iowa summers aren’t like other summers. 🙂 

We are due to go to Seattle in December, but that might be amended to next spring, with Darren coming back to Iowa in November for an American Thanksgiving.  We will see.  Plans are in flux due his job, but my fingers are crossed either way.  I want to go to Seattle at Christmastime, but I’ll take him being home for Thanksgiving.  Because I’ll bet he’d go Black Friday shopping with me, that’s the kind of guy I have. 🙂


Moving…..in more than a year.

I have been planning on making a move out of Iowa for a very long time.  Probably since high school, truth be known, but it is so hard to leave friends and family behind.   With the children, it is even harder, so I have planned not to leave until my daughter is out of elementary school, so that she has a decent foundation. It was one of the things that I would have changed from my own childhood, if I could have.  I like Iowa, on it’s own merits, there aren’t too many people and the crime rate is low. It’s a good place to raise children, if you don’t mind everyone knowing your business _all_ the time.  I just hate the winters, all the snow and the ice.  The summers are almost as bad, I can’t go outside without at least 50 SPF sunscreen and even when I do, I get burns all the fricking time.  The humidity can’t be forgotten, either.  So, I am moving to find a place that I can enjoy the nature, being outside and not be so stressed out about the weather.

This means I allow for one more school year to pass before we move.  I say we, meaning the children and I, possibly, just possibly, including Darren in that we, if he so chooses.  So far, the general idea is to move out to the Seattle area, though I am going to give some serious looks at Port Angeles and Port Townsend, as well.  I may  well move the children to a more rural area (like Port Townsend), which they are familiar with, because I think the much larger city (Seattle) would be a complete culture shock.  Port Angeles is about the size of Iowa City, a little smaller, but that also looks good to me.

I will be flying out to the area in December, Darren will likely be joining me to do the initial onsite investigations. I have spent lots of time researching the areas online and I have thought about moving to the West Coast for literally half my life.   This is not a decision that I have reached lightly, nor is it a spur of the moment life choice.  My ex-husband understands exactly what I am doing and why, and though he is angry about the change in the situation (visitation being moved to full summer, versus every other weekend), he is at least supportive of my pursuit of my happiness in life.  That means a lot, it really does.

My family has not been so supportive. My mother is now refusing to talk about it, like if she avoids it, it’ll go away on it’s own.  When I tried talking to her about it yesterday, I was instructed that I needed to talk to my grandmother and other family members, as if what they said would change my feelings and would instantly quash any desire to move.  So, I call my grandmother and she pretty much tells me that I need to listen to the children (I am!) and that parents sometimes have to make sacrifices for their children.  (Because I’ve never made any, obviously.)  She made it clear that she thought I was doing a great job as a parent and that she knew it was hard, but that I needed to take into consideration everyone else’s feelings about this situation.

I have been taking everyone else’s feelings into consideration since the day my divorce was final.  I have stayed for all of them.  I could have moved then, even if I am now glad I didn’t make that move; it doesn’t change the fact that I have stayed almost another ten years for my family and for the kids.  By staying, I was able to finish college and the kids have gotten a good solid education and have been close to their little brother.  Staying has definitely not been all bad.

But that doesn’t mean that moving will bad, either.  I think it will be an awesome adventure.  I am taking it slowly, doing lots of research and finding out all I can about the jobs, schools, communities that we are looking at. Making sure that I do a good review of the areas in advance, before making any commitments that I can’t get out of.  I am scared about it, but also thrilled to be able to finally put things together and start making the connections I need to make.  I just wish my family could be more supportive about it.  That would really make the difference for me.


There and back again.

Got back late last night from Edmonton, where I had a wonderful time.  I think Darren was set to run my feet off me, though we did try a variety of transportation modes. Bus, light rail transport, shuttle.  Three different malls, lots of different parts of town, so much to see.

I have to say that Edmonton was much, much bigger than I had pictured it.  If I was a big city person, it might have won me over.  I am not a big city person, so we will have to see what happens when we look at Seattle’s surrounding area.  We have been talking for months of when the children and I move to Washington state and just recently, Darren and I have come to the conclusion that when we move, he will also move.  The distance is really hard on both of us and when we just need to be held, it’s impossible.  When you want so badly to be with your loved one and can’t, so very painful.

I know it is not what we had originally decided and definitely, we are not just dating for a year and then letting go.  I can understand why our mutual friends had concerns about us, what with the distance, but we definitely are commited to making this work for the foreseeable future.  I thought of a million other things to put here earlier, when I was working, but I’m sitting here tired and none of it is coming to mind.  For those of you we missed, so sorry. 🙂 

Next up, the Mickja is on his way here in July.  Yay for his visit!  Meanwhile, I have to get the dog to forgive me for being gone for five days.

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