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Monday, May 31, 2010

It's Good To Be Great!

On May 25th, my new (and first) GREAT Nephew was born! Bryan William weighed in at 6 pounds, 20 inches long! A peanut! I saw him last night (May 30th) on Skype! You forget how small they are!

Mom had him "au naturale" at home with midwives. Pretty cool stuff! To quote that blasted movie (the name escapes me) about the WW2 Remagev Bridge campaign: "Here's a story to tell your children! And mightly bored they'll be!" I always forget when I see babies so new how tiny they are!

It sounds like Mom and Dad had a real adventure welcoming him into the world! Wow!

I'm looking forward to meeting him in person!

It's official. What my brother and I have always known. We are GREAT!

Monday, May 24, 2010

It's My Birthday! (And I Miss My Mom)

Yep, I'm another year experienced! LOL! Sure is better than saying older.

When I was a kid, my brother bemoaned my birthday, because the weather always sucked. Yes, indeed, it almost always rained on my birthday. Until I was in my 40s or so. In recent years, it's been nice and today is no exception. Sunny and predicated to be in the 80s. The irises are blooming in our garden. It's a good day.

Dink and Envy, M.'s cats, are still residents. Funny they should be the catalyst for my having a total meltdown a few days ago and for the first time in a long time, I missed my Mommy. They (the cats) are residing in our extra small bedroom, which Marty euphemistically and inexplicably refers to as The Boudoir. (I'm not sure why; never have known really.) I came into the room a few days ago and found that one or both of the cats had decided to use a little dresser as a scratching post.

This little dresser is a nothing piece really. It's made of hard cardboard, has 4 drawers with plastic handles and has plastic quilted fabric all around it. It's not a great piece of furniture. It's hardly a Louis XVI or anything like that. BUT, it was my mom's and she used it for her stockings, sewing stuff. Sort of a catch-all little piece that might be tucked away in a closet. The stitching was coming away from the fabric. It's a nothing, really.

I looked at the little dresser, now pretty well destroyed, and I just broke down. Wrapped my arms around myself and cried. It's didn't help that "Til There Was You" from THE MUSIC MAN was playing in my headphones either. What a soundtrack for being shattered, let me tell you. Mom used to sing that song.

I think about Mom a lot, but as a distant melody: "I wonder what she'd think of this or that?" Or, "Mom would like this movie." Etc. But this reaction was visceral, gut-felt sorrow and anger. Sorrow because you just miss your Mommy, the best, most loving part of your Mommy. Anger because yet again, it seems like we're cleaning up another mess that is partially Megan's making (they're HER cats) and I'm tired of cleaning up after her.

The cats are a concern. I never figured they'd be here this long, to be honest because M. has been so dependent on them. In my opinion, she has not given them the best quality of life. She bought them things: toys, catnip etc. like you would a kid and this made HER feel good. What do they really need? Food, some structure, kitty litter, a clean box, interaction. That's all. They don't need 60 millions toys and beds.

Will she come get them? I would think so; they're her critters. But if indeed, she is occupied with other things (whatever that may be), she may have not forgotten precisely about them, but they may not be such a "need" for her any more. She does forgot about "old" things in the heat of moment. Also, her roommates have a dog that isn't trained. (Don't GET me started on THAT!) And her BF doens't like the cats very much.

It brings up an interesting conundrum: how long will they stay here and how much effort, time, and money should we invest in making them a complete part of our home and lives.

Right now, it's a mystery. But if they are here for much longer, they will become ours.

However, I know if we buy them a damn scratching post and trim their nails, she'll probably come get them the next day. LMAO! Yep, that's the way of things.

Sunday, May 9, 2010


Did you ever notice how stressful moving is? Even when you're NOT the one moving?

Why should I be having what can only be called an "Anger-Anxiety Series of Moments?" After all, I'm not the one moving. Oh, yes, I'm moving things around. Did that last week. Sort of did a house cleaning thing, getting rid of stuff thing. Luckily for me, the Humane Society of Greater Akron (HSGA) is having their bi-annual Rummage Sale so all that stuff is going to a super cause! And there is a certain lifting of the spirit to get rid of stuff you really don't need. Or to be able to say, "You need to go on to a new home." What's interesting is feeling very weird throwing away anything. Nowadays throwing away stuff is considered to be ecologically BAD!! And I truly do get that. There is way too much crap out there. I do kind of feel that the Eco-Nazis are watching me and I'll be put in a concentration camp for throwing away stuff.

The hardest thing to throw away for me is a book. Must be all that book stuff that is in our very fiber of being, part of our genetic makeup. Josh used to say you could tell a member of our family because they had a phone in one hand and a book in the other. Quite true, actually. And I married a reader as well. (Both times!) We all have a love and respect for the printed word. I can see the appeal of Talking Books and Kindles and what-not but there is nothing, nothing I tell you, like the smell of a new book! Ambrosia! Throw away a book? Sacrilege! It has to be so far from gone for me to do it and even then, I apologize profusely to it. "Sorry, sorry, sorry!" as I toss it in the trash bag, turning my head away.

So Megan is moving out finally. It's time (long past) but she really does need to be on her own and facing whatever demons or boundaries she needs to face. It's not that bad, kid, honestly. It takes a little discipline and denial of instant gratification but that's not always bad stuff. She's moving into a house with some friends, one of whom works a 12 Step Program and THAT could be very beneficial for her in many ways.

What has been driving me absolutely bugger-bat-sh*t crazy is the WAY she's been moving.

First of all, Marty told her in December she had to move by April. It's now May 9th (Mother's Day, to be exact). Until we said we'd rent her a U-Haul, she had barely packed anything. She'd moved 5 carloads of stuff but her car wasn't empty at the time. So it's been this eeking, piecemeal, bitty-bit-here-and-there taking-forever turtles-move-faster moving. Reminds me of when my mother moved. That drove me absolutely wild! I like to get stuff over with, especially something like moving. I've moved well (all packed) and I've moved badly ("What? We're moving? Today?") Luckily for that move, I had "Attila the Hun Movers" in the guide of Alana Daveduk and I got to tell you, that girl can PACK ya and MOVE ya!

Megan and her friends did get a truckload of stuff out yesterday and I did help her boyfriend a bit. I think when you are looking at that much disorganized crap everywhere, furniture being blocked, etc. it can be overwhelming. But I got Daron (what kind of spelling is that? Never mind....) started and he's physically pretty strong and he can be pretty focused.

Then I did something that, for me, was really hard.

I did not help.

Marty and I occasionally would check out how the truck-loading part was doing but for the most part, we did nothing. In its most violent form.

Now there are several reason why I didn't help. The biggest reason was I would have been tired, pissy, frustrated and would have felt unappreciated and angry. Plus it would be a form of enabling because she is perfectly capable of doing the work and getting the pals to help. Oh, it would have gotten done, all right. But we both (Marty and I) would have been sore and miserable afterwards. Seeing someone that you know and care about living like a bag lady in filth and squalor in your house is really quite depressing, irritating and frustrating. There is no other way to put it. Cigarette butts do not belong in your bedclothes. Period.

Quite honestly, a third to half of her stuff should be thrown away. Another third should be donated. I get that people are weird about stuff. Marty and his boat, for instance. That's OK, it's out of the way. It's a dream, a thing for the water, He likes water, it's OK. I get it. We all have our little things. But she holds on to stuff that really needs to go. Or if she's going to hang on to it, it needs to be honored. There is a show on TV called "Hoarding: Buried Alive" and I sure as hell hope I don't see Megan on that show. Ever.

I don't want to live in a minimalistic style home. I think they are cold and unfriendly. Details make places interesting and homey to me. There is nothing inviting about any place that has nothing on the walls, no books, or pillows on the furniture and one-color-everything or stark colors. Like those stainless steel kitchens. Ugh! There is no texture, nothing visually interesting. It's one thing if you have huge windows with a view but even then, you want something to look at inside the house.

But there is too much with Megan. It's like she can't give anything up. I have news; your stuff won't protect you from hurt or the world at large. I get having stuff, it's having filthy stuff that is so frustrating to see. I've cared for her cats and let me tell you, THEY like it when things are clean and tidy.

I am sure, however, that which ever way this goes for her, it'll be a blessing and an education. I hope she can create a life of peace, learning to get go and with way less drama! That girl just has too much darn drama.

And we'll get our attic back!