Wow, hi guys!! Thanks for your comments and concerns. (Noonie – Greek yogurt?? hmmmmmmmmmmmm) (Ha ha KtP… :-P)
I’m at Zelda’s right now. I’ve been here since about 10:30 yesterday morning. What a GREAT COUPLE!!! Yep, they are the best. I LOVE THEIR GIRLS!! You talk about sweet. Had margaritas with Brighton and her hubby, and Tinyhands last night. WE HAD A BLAST!! Brighton is everything you could imagine. Bubbly, beautiful, bouncy! I actually stopped by her place first on Monday. Her kids are equally as wonderful. Sara was just getting off the bus and David and Hunter were hanging around. Sorry that I missed her Annie. Hunter is… OMG! He is sooooooo funny!! More on them and Z. and J.’s girls when I get home.
Tinyhands hands are not tiny. Just thought I would give up his secret. I have pictures to prove it. He got there a little later and I was already buzzing so…. he also sat on the opposite end of the table from me… bummer. Nice, nice guy though. Great sense of humor.
I have had the most wonderful time in TX! Don’t mean to leave Seven out. He was SUCH a good sport about wandering around the Quarter with my cousin and I … shopping. And I normally hate shopping. He was kind enough to buy us a quick breakfast at Cafe Du Mond and then a beautiful butterfly hair clasp for me. Thank you Seven! Sweet guy – a little more quiet than I expected but, like I said, a good sport.
This trip has gone wonderful and I still have AJ to look forward to again on the way home. He says he’s taking me out for …. TEXMEX AND MARGARITAS!!! LOL!! Bring it on. My sis is great, my nephews are sooo big but absolutely they both smile at me and then blush. J4 doesn’t even remember the first time we met. Great, great boys.
Weather… couldn’t be better. Had a few problems in LA but the rest of the trip has been fabulous. Will need SPF 30 for the trip back to LA tomorrow. Mileage so far… 1300 miles.
Gotta run. Miss you all. Can’t wait to catch up.
Hi everyone! I’m at my sister’s right now. Yay! My trip has been wonderful!!! Excellent weather the entire time other than yesterday when it was quite cool. It did rain when I spent the day with Seven and my cousin on the French Quarter but we watched from the safety of “The Chart Room.” Seven has already blogged about it and I’ll be adding more later.
I drove straight through from WV to LA in 14 hours. I drove from LA to TX today… a nice 6 hour jaunt. A funny thing happened in Atchafalaya, Louisiana. Remind me to tell you. I’ve already seen the beautiful Brighton and met 5/6ths of the family (lovely Annie wasn’t home). Brighton is WON-DER-FUL!! More on her later too.
Talked to Trashman, Zelda, and Jethro. You should have heard Jethro laugh when I called him “Jethro.” I’m meeting up with Z tomorrow after I see about my cell phone. Then Brighton, Travis, Z. and Jeth and I are going out for margaritas. Unfortunately, due to work constraints I won’t get to meet T-Man this time around.
My sinuses have been bugging the crap out of me!!!!!!! And my hair, dear God, I forgot what humidity does to my hair. Just look on Seven’s blog… that will tell ya all you need to know. Talked to Nate today. He misses his Mama but at least he didn’t cry. I got him a shark’s tooth necklace, a bag of Mardi Gras beads, and my aunt sent him two pearls that my uncle bit into.
The food has been … oh… making me fat. There’s a cheesecake place right below my cousin’s house. We’ve been there twice already. I plan on going again before I leave. YUM!! So, that’s the short version. Mileage and bathroom breaks will just have to wait until I get home and get myself situated. Catch you guys on the flipside. I’ll be checking in before I leave TX.
You know, I’m beginning to believe that old adage…. NO REST FOR THE WICKED!!
I, like everyone else, have an opinion on the Terry Schiavo matter. My opinions are based on this. Excellent website with links to the ACTUAL COURT FINDINGS. The report of the Guardian Ad Litem to Govenor Jeb Bush (December 1, 2003) has one of the most complete timelines as well as investigations into the motives on both sides of the issue, medical findings, prognosis, etc. Its an exceptional document.
I’m just trying to spread the facts. That’s all I have to say about that.
Otherwise, I’m busier than a one-armed paperhanger on crack. My desk is sagging in the middle from the weight of everything I’m trying to accomplish. When I get home today, I will have exactly six hours to make sure a billion things are done before I leave. Okay, maybe I will stay up past midnight. Its almost a certainty, at least until all of the clothes are washed and folded and placed in the appropriate bag for either myself or Nate. I usually travel light but realized that I’m not going somewhere for three days, its going to be over a week. Three pairs of jeans is not going to cut it.
I’ll have computer capabilities while I’m at my sister’s place, Monday through Wednesday. I’ll catch up with everyone then. Don’t do anything I wouldn’t do. On second thought, don’t do anything you wouldn’t normally do. Doing everything up to what I wouldn’t do is sure to get you in trouble. Stay away from the blog water. See you on the flipside.
Okay, good for you if you made it through the T-Bird saga.
Let’s move on.
This trip planning business is a pain in my ass. First, Ye Olde Automobile needed at least two new front tires, a front end alignment, and an oil change. The idiot shop that put my last tires on… oh, they put the wrong size on, yeah, about three sizes too small!!! So, instead of buying two new tires, I now have four! At twice the cost of course. I also have another trip coming up, not real soon, but soon enough and I have to put back money for that. OH, and I haven’t even got the front-end aligned yet or the oil changed. That’s tomorrow… yeah.
Okay, it needed done anyway… and frankly, the tires couldn’t have waited. Yeah, one of them had worn funky and you know, all those silver belt thingys were frayed and making my wheel wobble-dobble. Not exactly safe. Hence the front end alignment. Wow, wonder how much my mpg will go up? COST ME 27 FUCKING DOLLARS TO PUT 12.279 GALLONS OF GAS IN MY CAR!!!! I know, what am I complaining about? Hear you peeps in Cali (Aimee, Mike, Jeanette, Gooch, Leese) are paying $3 bucks a gallon. I just want to say, that’s completely fucked up.
I guess you want to know how I’m getting there and the when’s and what for’s. I’m leaving Nate’s school at 8:11 a.m. That’s one minute after I drop him off. I will then proceed to get on I-64 West and head toward Lexington, KY, dip South on I-65 and continue on I-65 until I reach Birmingham, AL. From Birmingham I’ll take I-20 to Meridian, MS. I’ll either die of exhaustion here or continue on I-59 (read: continue) to Slidell, LA, and head West on I-12 to my cousin’s place. I may actually nap somewhere in between. Dunno yet.
From my trip to AJ’s I know with leaving at 8:00 I should be in Nashville at the latest by 1:30 CST. Given how fast I drove the last time. If not I’ll get there around 2:00. The next leg of the trip is a little over 8 hours if I don’t get stuck in traffic and all that jazz. I thought I would be tired when I got to Nashville, but I was okay. Excitement gets me there. I figure if I can get to Nashville and not collapse until 2:00 a.m. my time… yeah, I can do it. No, I’m not stupid. I’ve pulled over before and napped. Yes, I’ll be careful. My mother has already told me to lock my doors.
What AJ and I both neglected to tell you was that my mother sent the, “he may be a serial killer” e-mail before I left for TN. Bwhahahahahahahahahaha!!! I’m not showing her a picture of Trashman before I leave… or that Halloween picture of Zelda and Jethro. Heh. I’ll be stopping in Nashville on my way back through to see AJ and family again. I think I’ll need the rest.
Some of you may be wondering why I’m not taking I-77 south. Here’s why. Mountains, tolls, and high winds. Going through Nashville and south from there is almost the exact same distance as going I-77, its just much flatter (better mpg!).
I felt very panicky today. I’ve never gone this far for so long and left Nate. Plus, found out more unsavory things about SD today. Yes, it can always be worse. Never, ever, forget that. No, he’s not going to be with SD the entire time but long enough. This is his holiday so there’s not much I can say. He’s knows what’s expected. What I found out though is that SD has been sending Nate and his sister next door to his brother’s house. Enough that they keep clothes over there for them. Uh huh. The local convenience store will no longer sell him beer because in this great state of mine, it is illegal to sell alcohol to a known alcoholic. Seems as though everyone knows but him.
Did I tell you how bad he looks? Really bad. Sickly bad. His brother told him, whilst in the midst of WWIII with each other this past week, that he looked like he has AIDS. No offense to sufferes of AIDS but I have to agree. He’s about 6′ tall and used to fluctuate between 180 and 220. SD couldn’t be over 150 now. Maybe 140. He’s really, really, really thin. His face is sunk in with big lines in it. Its hard to believe he’s only 42 years old. He looks at least 10 years older. He says he’s just been sick all winter with colds and flu, his stomach hurts, he throws up etc. He abuses his body badly, worse than just booze. Actually, he looks a little like a tweaker too, but I don’t think he’s on meth. He sleeps too much.
I guess if someone wants to off themselves, it may not be quick, but its still painful to watch.
Some of the panic has subsided. I think it has to do with finances too. But, everything is going okay and unless something is terribly wrong with my car tomorrow… its all a go for Thursday. If you would like for me to wave as I drive past a particular landmark or a road that would take me to you, let me know, and I’ll put it on my map.
T-Bird told me on her birthday that its amazing how one person can change so much in such a short period of time. She was talking about me. I think three years is a long time for change but I realized that she wishes three years had made such a dramatic change in her. She has changed. The core of who she is hasn’t changed. Its the way she deals with life that has.
T-Bird’s wounds were packed on top of one another very tightly and filtering through them, one at a time, is difficult. Still, she has an insane sense of humor. She says, “I don’t take drugs (medication for depression) so you people can deal with me. I take drugs so I can deal with you.” We’ve agreed when the kids are old enough, I get to run Jerk over a with a 4X4 and she gets to run over SD. We’ve contemplated and compared hiding places for bodies, almost been banned from Wally World, called each other in the middle of the night because we’ve done something we shouldn’t have and were in a panic, and speak what the other is thinking.
I know if I have a problem, if I want or need advice, she’s there. She’s the first person to stand behind me and push me along. I’m the first to grab her hand and take her with me. For all that, we both know, its really up to us.
When I wrote about seeing “8 Mile” it was at T-Bird’s place and I told her later what an inspiration it was to me. “Look, if you had one shot, one opportunity, to seize everything you ever wanted, one moment, would you capture it, or just let it slip?” Having lived the majority of her life in and around the area where Eminem grew up, she has experienced a lot of the same things he had. She didn’t see the same inspiration that I did. It didn’t touch her where it touched me.
It was Tim McGraw who touched her. We were on the phone a few days ago, which is what inspired ME to write this series of posts. She asked if I had heard the song, “Live Like You Were Dying.” I had heard pieces of the song and knew the story behind it, but not being a country music fan it didn’t really hold that much significance. She told me she had heard the song numerous times but that one day, she really listened to the lyrics and took a look at her life.
She said, “I hate to admit it but there’s an dent in the couch where I sit my fat ass all the time. I want to get a job and a life and a future. I’m just sitting here, doing nothing. I’m 32 years old and what do I have to show for it? That song really woke me up and made me realize, I’m not going have all my life to have a life. This is it and I’m not doing everything I can to make it the best.”
I said, “I’m so proud of you.” She paused for a couple of seconds then said, “I am too.”
Its about damn time girlfriend.
Laura Ingalls Wilder once wrote, “Ambition is good servant, but a poor master.” I would have to say the same about pride. Being prideful and having pride, are two different things. One dictates to you how to allow pride to stand in the way of those things which make life easier, like forgiveness, the other, propels you forward to be the best you can and to do the best you can because you care about yourself. This is the one thing that has stood in T-Bird’s way. Her inability to love and embrace herself.
T-Bird has diabetes and has had to give up her addiction to Mountain Dew. I was shocked. I never thought she would give it up. She’s eating healthier and taking her medication and has lost weight. I mentioned to her that when the weather warmed up a bit we could take the boys to the track down from her house and we could walk while they played. Ha ha ha! I expected her to say, like she always has, “I ain’t fuckin’ walkin’. I hate walkin’.” Instead she said, “You know, I was thinking the same thing,” and she meant it.
Don’t get me wrong, she still irritates the fuck out of me. She’s still sitting at home and has nothing better to do than focus her energies and every thought on her and J3 and her nephew. I can’t fault her for her love for them, that’s for sure. She does tend to be self-centered but when your life revolves around looking at yourself in the mirror, what else do you expect?
But I love her. I love her like a sister, and a bratty baby sister. I love her because she smart, and a smart ass. I love how she laughs, even when its at me. I love the way she says, “I was right,” even when I have to say, “I know.” I love how we try to one up each other on fuck-ups.
(T-Bird) “I cheated on my husband”
(Nanner) “So, I cheated with someone else’s husband and had his child!”
(T) “Okay, you win.”
(N) “See, I was right!”
(T) “You can’t use it like that.”
(N) “Yes, I can.”
(T) “No you can’t.”
(N) “Fuck you.”
(T) “Fuck you back.”
But most of all, I’ve learned from her, whether through example or what not to do:
When you fuck up, someone’s done it worse.
Don’t be a dumbass.
If ya ain’t gonna shit, get off the pot.
If you can’t drive it, park it.
Move, or get the fuck outta the way.
Wal-Mart has more security than you think.
Say what you mean, and mean what you say.
When plotting revenge, always have a wingman more devious than you.
K-Y will run down the side of the vehicle instead of staying under the handle. Use Vaseline.
And most importantly, you may not always like your friends or what they do, but love is never optional.
T-Bird was not to be deterred by a stubborn ass Nanner. She caught me one night right before Halloween as I was modifying one of my dresses for a Halloween party. How dare she follow me home and insinuate herself in my living room? I was still extremely wary. I didn’t have a lot to say through that evening and early morning. I wondered which body snatcher had taken my T-Bird and replaced her with this rational human being.
Who was this woman who was telling me that she was to blame for our problems? Who was this woman who was admitting what a basketcase she is? Who are you? And what did you do with T-Bird?
Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. I circled her like a lioness protecting her cubs. She knew, or so she told me later, if she didn’t grow some brass cajones and basically invade my home and sit there in my face, I would never make the first move to reconcile our relationship. Damn right she was too. Bitch… knows me too fucking well. I had met her halfway for too long, and she knew it. Its not that I wanted her to grovel but I wanted her to know I was fed up and done with the crap. Either she could handle it or she couldn’t.
This certainly did not cure what ailed us… or her… or me. We learned though that silence did not mean we were upset with each other. We were finally on the right path together. Again, when things between Lex and I soured it was T-Bird who was there. (Even now, like when he IM’ed me a few days ago and wanted to “get together” she told me to tell him to “go fuck himself.” (Such love.)
It was around that same time that she really, really hit the skids. This was the true test of the “new” people that we were. She … has a difficult time handling J3 at times. In other words, he’s rotten spoiled and knows how to push her buttons and manipulate her to get his way. Even if it means she’s might kill him. Bob, while not a saint himself, comes awful damn close. He has stuck by her through thick and thin. More thin. He says its because of J3 but that’s a crock of shit. Bob loves her as much today as he did the first day they met. Why? Because he can see her heart. Bob has spent a lot of time on the 12th level of hell. Good man. Mows my grass to piss T-Bird off. (Jealousy? Yes! What? Didn’t think of that?)
One night she was telling me that she had heard the neighbors up the street from her screaming at each other and their baby sitting there squalling during the whole episode. She came home and called the cops. Hmmmm… Not three or four nights later she called me in tizzy. She was fit to be tied over J3. This is one of the things I almost killed her over. I was an eighth of a hair’s-breath away from jumping in my car, driving the mile to her house, pulling her into the church parking lot, and opening a can of West Virginia whoop ass.
I don’t remember the exact conversation. Too bad, it was a good one. I told her that if she didn’t shut her pie hole that maybe her neighbors would call the cops on her because she didn’t sound any better and the reason J3 acted the way he did was due to his stellar role model – her. Never ask the Nanner a question you don’t want an answer to. She made that mistake. Stiffly, she said good bye and hung the phone up. I figured this would be it. Either she would call me tomorrow and we would talk about it like adults or we wouldn’t. We did. She admitted that I was 100% right and changes needed to take place.
Change is so hard.
By August, the shit was just flying left and right. I was getting calls from KCZ AND Bob. That means its really bad. I was prepared when T-Bird called in full meltdown. Yes, I had already hashed it out with Bob and KCZ, since I was probably the one person on Earth who could convince her to do the right thing.
I suggested she send J3 to visit her brother in Michigan for a few weeks. Her brother has three girls and could use another man in the house. I told her it wasn’t a sin to need a break or to take one. (Yes, she reminded me that I was no better.) I told her I would take J3 to Michigan and pick him up if need be. I also encouraged her to go into an inpatient/outpatient program at the hospital for depression.
Surprisingly, she didn’t go off the deep end as usual. She really was looking for a way out. She mentioned calling her dad in California. He had never seen J3 maybe they could go visit. Hmmm… I guess that would do. Her dad did agree and actually bought the tickets for them. She counted down the days (so did we.) California would be good for her. Sort of.
First, she realized that the idyllic life she always pictured with her absent father wasn’t so idyllic. His wife is a bitch, her half-brother a spoiled brat, and her step-brother a moron. Ahhh yes, life with dad was not what she had imagined. Still, I think she let go of a lot of old hurt and forged a new relationship with him.
As I made my way through the “peeling of the onion” she followed along at a safe distance. When she saw the difference it made in me, she was compelled as well to discuss, more in depth, her feelings and perceptions and how just because someone else’s perception was different than her’s did not make them any more wrong than her. She started back to beauty school but the stress was too great. She switched to a shorter CNA course and graduated at the top of her class.
Again, doesn’t mean everything is… peachy keen. She melted down two weeks ago over her mom and Bob called me a work, worried she was going to leave and take J3 to a homeless shelter. I told him to stop buying into that shit and to let her and we’d see how fast I filed a petition to remove J3 from her custody. She still won’t talk to me about stuff like this. Why? Because she knows I’ll tell her what an idiot she’s being. She’s tried the “homeless shelter” shit before with me and I said, “Go ahead, but you’re not taking J3 anywhere near one of those places when he has a home to stay in, either with his dad, your mom, or me.”
Yes, the Nanner has learned how to be brutally honest and not give a shit if she likes it or not.
(Last segment… coming up soon)
By the fall of 2000, T-Bird and I were on the outs. I’m not sure when we “made up.” It was after she started back on medication. Over the next few years, up until the fall of 2003, we followed a predictable course. Everything would be fine for a while, and then something innocuous would happen and T-Bird would get mad and not speak to me.
This isn’t to say that we didn’t have our good times. We sure did. We were also there for each other. It was T-Bird who stood by me through the tough times with Holland. It was T-Bird who went to court with me as a witness and a pillar of strength when I fought for full custody of Nate. We rode the winding roads of WV together searching for my jerk boyfriend. Sometimes it was she who watched over him in an effort to help me. All it got her was felt up. Yes, my boyfriend felt up my best friend.
I was there when she got mixed up with her ex-boyfriend (jerk!). I was there when she and Bob divorced (they still live together). I was there when she was mad at everyone, including me. She cried on my shoulder when the jerk betrayed her again. I was there to help her move and rearrange her mom’s storage building in 90 degree weather. (She moved six times after leaving my house.) I can’t say the years were a total disaster or wash. Not at all.
They were also, besides the first six months after J3’s birth, the most trying times. Her medication was changed as often as her underwear. More and more her past came to haunt her.
T-Bird is a survivor. We both love and loathe that about one another. We’re both strong, opinionated women who take no shit. That’s tough when the shit is being dished. The birth of J3 was a turning point for her into darkness. A deep pool of darkness. She often thrashed around trying to keep her head above water yet drug everyone down with her.
T-Bird was trying to deal with the demands of parenting, being a wife (or ex-wife), the delayed reaction to the death of her daughter, the omnipresence of her mother, strained relationship with her father, a sister wilder than a buck and more headstrong than T-Bird, her mom, and me combined. Let’s not forget the sexual abuse by her grandfather, who stole her virginity at the age of twelve, and the fondling by her cousin from the time she was six until she was 16.
That’s a lot.
It seemed as though she would bite into and tear off a chunk only to gag on it. Life was a roller coaster for everyone. I wasn’t much help myself until early 2003. I was just as lost and sick as she was. When I started getting my shit together I became much more aware of where, not just T-Bird, but the whole family was going. We all should have gotten the T-shirt that read “Why are we in hell and how did we get in this handbasket?”
Another pattern emerged in which I was afraid to answer the phone because it would be T-Bird wanting something. Money, to borrow my car, watch her kid, talk about herself… something. I was merely a vessel. She teetered closer and closer to the edge.
I’ve told T-Bird’s mom, KCZ, on several occasions if she were my mother and interfered as much with my life as she did T-Bird’s I would have kicked her out a long time ago. KCZ, loving though she is, is the most annoying, irritating mother on the Earth. Gossip-mongers the whole lot of them. Life isn’t complete unless she is totally in the middle of everyone’s life (good mechanism to keep from dealing with her own!).
Chay… well, as I said before, she inherited the worst from all of us. She’s twelve years younger than T-Bird. Her father, T-Bird’s stepfather, was killed in an industrial accident when she was 2, 3, 4 years old. Yes, this family has been through it. Add her brother into the mix… and his wife… and their three children. C., his wife, and two children disappeared right after the birth of the second baby because KCZ interfered too much. No shit. Everything is fine now but… more stress.
Still, as I was trying to pull my shit together, the rest of them were falling apart. I can’t remember exactly why but by J3’s 4th birthday, T-Bird and I were once again on the outs. This time she had made me sooooo mad with her bullshit, I said, no more. I was done.
Finis. Finite. Finished. Ohhh… the Nanner can have a hard heart. I don’t make people suffer unduly. I don’t play games. I had just finally come to the realization that I was hurting myself and any forward progress by continuing to allow T-Bird to drag me through the briars with her. There would be no reunions or forgiveness. It was over.
And even the best laid plans go awry.
Anyone who knows me well, knows I’m a rather introverted person. Well, I’m an extrovert/introvert mix. Socially, I’m an extrovert. I don’t have trouble starting conversations and given the right environment, I can be the life of the party. I’m not AS extroverted as I use to be in social situations but I can hold my own. Privately though, I am very, very introverted. I have to have my alone time. I don’t like people in my space. Actually, it depends on the person. If its someone who knows not to touch my shit, we’re okay and I will tolerate them, however, if its someone who doesn’t know that, its very difficult for me to be a gracious hostess.
I’m particularly fussy about my desk and even more particular about my computer. Not that my desk is the paradigm of grace, elegance, and cleanliness, its not. I have books stacked on it, thread, beads, beer bottles, candles, scraps of paper, pictures, etc. But to me… its sacred. Hallowed fucking ground… m’kay?!? My computer… my gateway to the world, the memory of my writings, storage place of my thoughts. DON’T. TOUCH. My other stuff, I’m a lot, lot less picky about. Just don’t touch my swan collection. Okay, everything else you can touch.
I didn’t really understand how much I was this way until T-Bird, Bob, and J3 moved in. Problem is, T-Bird is the same way, except she had no problems with touching and sharing MY stuff. Yeah, it was going to be a tough two weeks. Hey, we can all put up with something for two weeks, right?
Still, she was not the same T-Bird that I had known. I found out she wasn’t on her medication either. Welcome to the roller coaster. The roller coaster of manic depression. Manic depression is marked by extreme highs and extreme lows in mood. Its also marked by substance abuse, promiscuous behavior, stealing, lying, and cheating. Oh, and irrationality and self-centeredness. Did I mention self-centeredness? (This is the way it manifested itself in T-Bird, everyone’s different.)
Bob had interviewed for a job and was accepted for the position before they ever moved. Good deal right? Yes, unless that job turns out to be part-time instead of full-time. T-Bird made him quit the job. Uh oh, UH OH! Its really difficult to describe her behavior at this time. And Bob’s for that matter. Since it was Bob who withdrew some of the little money they had and went to a titty bar. Uh huh. He slept on the couch with one eye open for two weeks. As well he should have because not only was T-Bird fit to be tied, so was I. That money was part of what was going to get them out of MY house.
If I was miserable, Nate was right behind me. I had to remind T-Bird more than once that, indeed, this was his house and he was only four years old. This was a big change for him. He was not used to having a 10 month old around, or two more adults, or those two adults family milling around. Yes, bad enough though it was that we, the five of us were cramped together, but T-Bird’s mom came by all the time. And she brought her boyfriend, and T-Bird’s sister, and T-Bird’s sister’s boyfriend. Five adults, two teenagers, two children, a ton of shit, all in less than a 1,000 sq. ft. It was hell. Did they call? No. Did they care that they would ‘stop by’ less than half an hour after I got home from work? No.
Oh, and those two weeks Bob spent on the couch? That was the 2ND two weeks they were here. Those two weeks melted into another and another. T-Bird and I both were nearing meltdown, both with each other, our kids, and Bob. She was overprotective of J3 to the point it was just flat out ridiculous. She moved in, yet expected Nate and I to make all of the concessions.
Like I said, it was difficult as hell to understand her at that time. It was her way or the highway, but it was my highway. She couldn’t seem to get that through her head. I also couldn’t get her to understand that Nate didn’t answer to her. Nate answered to me. I didn’t let Nate pilfer through her things, break toys or personal items, nor did I allow him to hurt J3 in any way… yet… nothing was good enough.
By the end of 11 weeks (and after the first wave of bills came in) they finally had gotten the money together to move into an apartment at a complex where Bob was working. No, they didn’t give me a dime to stay with me. T-Bird had gotten food stamps from the State because of Bob’s unemployment and the fact they had a child so she bought the food. Problem is, they also ate the majority of it and didn’t leave it when they left. I asked her if she intended to help pay off her portion of the utilities and she said she would. No, I never got it.
In October (they moved in July 4th weekend of 2000) they moved their shit outta my house. Nice friend now aren’t I? Adding insult to injury, they wanted to borrow my key so each of the people helping with the move could come and go at the house without having to wait on someone. I told her she could just leave the door unlocked. Its not like someone was going to come in and make off with their stuff. NO. Okay, FINE! Just get the fuck. Out. Of. My. House!
I didn’t help with the move because I was in, ahahhhahahhaha, another wedding! As we got dressed, the gown which I had already tried on, split right up the back seam and the wedding coordinator sewed me into it. So, what happens when I get home? Worn out, I returned home to find no one there, the house locked up tight as a drum. I called all the cell phones, no answer.
Not only that, I had to pee. So, I hitched my skirt up, took my shoes and hose off, built a little ladder out of what I had in the yard and put myself through the kitchen window, dress and all.
Once I had went to the bathroom, I wiggled and pulled and cussed trying to get that dress off. Finally, I cut it off. Bleh! Stupid dress.
Finally, finally they were gone. T-Bird really surprised me by getting misty-eyed when we parted. I felt pretty terrible for plotting her death so frequently. Still, I had no desire to see or talk to her for a while. When I did, I was informed that she was mad at me because I had gotten mad at Bob for taking the money intended to get them out of my house sooner and using it for the titty bar. She felt as though I had no right to be upset. Does the phrase, “fuck you bitch!” mean anything?
Needless to say, we parted ways. (This is it for today, unless the Advil I’m getting ready to take gets rid of this fever and aches I’ve developed.)
Nothing could have prepared me for my return to Michigan. Nothing. The nicest description I can muster is that T-Bird had morphed into a cross between a Mama Grizzly, a barracuda, and a King Cobra. Baby Blues? Bite your tongue. Post partum depression? Pfffffffft! Severe psychosis? Getting warm.
Wanna hold the baby? Ummm… no. Change his diaper? Ummmm…no. Feed him his bottle? Ummmmm… no. Nothing anyone did was good enough, if they were allowed to do it at all. Even Bob…especially Bob. I woke up at 3:00 a.m. one morning in time to hear her scream at him, “Its too fucking hot!” Whoaaaa… I drifted back off but woke up when she screamed, “Now it’s too fucking cold!” And “WHAP,” the sound of a full baby bottle hitting the wall.
What made this worse was I had Nate with me. Nate was three years old and curious about J3 and I watched as Nate approached him in his bouncy chair. Nate reached out and touched J3’s hand, causing J3 to startle, a completely normal response for a month old baby. Yet, hell hath no fury as a mother who believes I have allowed my son to ‘scare the shit!’ out of hers. I swear to God, I thought she was going to hit Nate. God help her, she didn’t. She would be dead and I would be blogging from prison.
I heard, for the next four days, how I had allowed Nate to scare J3. Reasoning with her? Out of the question. I had watched in abject horror as she watched every. little. move. Nate made. I pointed out to her that she would stand and wait and watch for him to do something she didn’t approve of so she could jump his shit.
“Well, this is my house.”
“Well, he’s my son and I don’t need you to tell me that he has to stand six inches outside the kitchen when he can sit with me.”
By the end of the week, Nate asked plaintively, “Can we go home now Mom?” Damned if I wasn’t ready.
This episode almost ruined our friendship. A fact she’ll freely admit to this day. She’ll freely admit she didn’t deal with Tori’s death until J3 was born. She’ll freely admit she was neurotic. Okay, she still says post partum depression… trust me… neurotic doesn’t come close. The kicker was Nate. When T-Bird came to WV around Thanksgiving, I had pulled out all of my baby clothes to see if she could use anything. My son, Mr. Energy, sat playing with a toy, his back turned to her. He was so quiet, I forgot he was there! Forgot! MY hyper boy was there. Oh, and she didn’t bring J3 with her. Talk about a slap in the face. Yet, Nate’s reaction to her did not go unnoticed.
Things had improved some by her next birthday. She had calmed down a bit and was making plans to move back to WV. I can’t say I was overly thrilled but I did offer to house them for the two week transition period. Three adults, two children, less than a thousand square feet… enough furniture for two households. Oy.
T-Bird was burned by a kitchen accident when she was a child. It permanently scarred her left shoulder and breast so she was a stickler for kids staying out of the kitchen at her house. But Nate was used to following me everywhere. I used it as an opportunity to teach him the right and wrong way to do things. Yeah, so he could scramble eggs at 4 … oh well. This is what had gotten him in so much trouble at T-Bird’s apartment. The kitchen. So, when T-Bird and her extended family showed up, Nate was out the door and he met T-Bird halfway across the lawn and said, “This is my house and I’ll go in the kitchen anytime I want.”
Yep. It was going to be an interesting two weeks.