Finally! The presents are all wrapped, the tree is lookin' fine. Time to rest and reflect before the kids come home from Mr. Exq's house.
Yes, the kids are at Mr. Exq's at the moment. Technically I am supposed to have the kids from 12/23-12/30. However, since I am not a shrew, and since the grandparents were in town, I said they could go for the evening. They'll be back in a little bit.
Before that we had quite a hectic day. We were at the supermarket at 8 a.m. It was busy but not horrible. There were showers to be had and dresses adorned for church. Yes, I am not the brightest bulb on the Christmas tree and attempted to take all three kids to a church service. It ended up being OK. Colin was a bit loud but noone seemed to mind. Well, at least not to my face. C2 sang with a choir and seemed to have fun.
The only small damper on this good day was the loser ex-boyfriend showing up at church with his fiancee/bill-payer and picking a fight with his ex-wife. Honestly, the more I see him in action, the more grateful I am that I am not the one picking up his tab!!!
Tomorrow promises to be a fun but laid-back day. The Cs and I are going to open gifts, enjoy Panettone for breakfast, and have ham for lunch. Everyone is psyched. Even the Scrooge known as me!
So, the kids have been on my case for a while to adopt another cat.
"Ma!" said C2. "When's Newman going to die so we can get another cat?"
I'm convinced Newman has like 20 lives. He recently ate one of those ice-pack-thingies you put in the kids' lunchboxes to keep them cold during the day. He lived. He's not going anywhere anytime soon.
That said, I didn't want C2 to think of Newman as a placeholder for another cat. So I decided it was a good time to bring another feline into our family.
We went to a cat adoption event at a pet store in our town, and found the cat we thought would be best for our house. I then filled out an application for the cat. I had to give references, my vet's name/number, show proof I owned my house, etc. I was about ready to pee in a cup when I found out I was approved.
So, I drove to the shelter and brought home Beatrice. Isn't she a cutie?
The kids were thrilled and took to her right away.
That afternoon C3's teacher came for a home visit. When she opened the door to leave, Beatrice bolted.
"SHIT!" I screamed at the poor woman as I'm imagining the cat becoming dinner for a neighborhood coyote.
Beatrice darted into a shrub in my yard. We're talking WAY down in a shrub. I went inside to retrieve a flashlight and some food to try to coerce her out. Meanwhile the kids have their noses against the window, crying.
I had to take them to Mr. Exq's for their visitation, and then I came back. Beatrice was still down in the shrub. I finally was able to reach for her, and I slipped. Well, that scared the shit out of her and she took off.
What the hell was I going to do?
I called my next-door neighbor. She loves animals so I figured she might be sympathetic. I gave her a good description.
"How long have you had her?" she asked.
"Uh, about four hours," I replied.
She offered to leave her garage open in case Beatrice might come over.
Meanwhile I combed the whole back yard. No sign of her.
I went inside to get a drink. Of course who should call but Mr. Exq.
"The kids are pretty upset that the cat got out."
No shit Sherlock! How do you think I feel that here I am, trying to do a nice thing for a cat, and the damn thing bolted!
After I hung up, I went to the deck and who was there?
I opened the door. "Get your ass in here right now young lady!"
She willingly came in.
Other than that, Beatrice has been a wonderful addition to our family. She gets along with all the kids and the other pets. In fact, she's taken a liking to C2, sleeping on her bed at night. I'm thrilled.
There are probably a lot of people out there who think I have the intellectual capacity of a gnat. After all, I do (and enjoy!) some shallow things. Like reading People, checking out TMZ, perhaps even watching a segment of good ole' Dr. Phil.
But I do like to think and be challenged too.
Part and parcel with a divorce comes re-thinking your life, your priorities, the choices you wish to make moving forward.
So when I recently visited Melody's blog, and read this post, well, it really resonated with me, and parallels much of what I've been doing myself.
As she writes, we get to choose who and what really comes into/stays in our lives. It sounds simple enough, but it's not always easy to accomplish. She envisions herself as a property undergoing restoration, and making conscious choices about who and what gets to stay.
"Your mind is sacred space. You can have as many people and things and dreams going on in your life as you really want to have…but put boundaries on how close those things get to the core of you. YOU ALWAYS GET TO DECIDE WHAT GETS TO STAY….and what even makes it past the front door…don’t forget that. THIS IS YOUR HOUSE!"
She nailed it. What she wrote has been at the core of what I've been thinking for the past couple years. Sometimes I feel like I'm going to be surprised at every turn. Yes, my children can be demanding and surprising. Yes, people have their own expectations of me. Yes, I was in two bad relationships and the pain from those sucked. But those feelings don't need to become the core of my being. I get to choose what I want to have, whom I want to have, close to me and my kids. I can "evict" people, things, and thoughts that aren't aligned with who I am.
I guess Melody's words reminded me ... restoration is not a bad thing. It's, dare say it, intellectual? to really, REALLY take the time and effort to imagine what I want, who I want, as part of my life moving forward. I do have the power to shoo things away, put old stuff at the curb, give thoughts an "eviction" notice. That's powerful.
You can negotiate at Circuit City. I bought a new TV and was able to get some $$ knocked off the price. This coming from someone who has not purchased a TV since the invention of the remote control.
I am not so humbled as I am when ... I shampoo a rug and see how positively filthy the recovery tank gets. Oh my gravy.
Chicken soup really does a lot to soothe one's soul. I have some on the stove simmering away, waiting on the kids to get home from dad's house.
I love reading. Most of my recent selections have been good, except for Friday Night Knitting Club. I almost didn't finish that one. I had no empathy for the characters, the trip to Scotland was positively boring, and the ending didn't jive with where the story was headed.
We are watching American Idol this season. The girls seem to like it, although I'm getting a little bored with the auditions. The competition is much more entertaining.
I am feeling very unpatriotic. Uninformed. Un-intellectual. (Well, we all know I have the intellectual capabilites of a gnat.)
Here's my problem: I so desperately want to like one of the candidates running for President. Just one.
And, I can't find one I want to support.
While getting a pedicure, I was watching CNN, trying to stay awake. The topic was the upcoming primary in South Carolina. Different viewers had emailed in comments. There was one that pretty much articulated how I feel.
Mike Huckabee. Love Chuck Norris, but Huckabee is way, way, WAY too conservative.
John McCain. He's not horrible. But, at the same time, not electable.
Rudy Giuliani. Great leader after 9/11. No question. Did great things in NYC. Again, not electable.
Let's face it: the Republicans have had eight years ... I think that's enough for now.
Barack Obama. OK; he's said he'd do stuff for autism, which I like. Oprah likes him. But, does he have enough experience to run the country? I don't think so. I mean, how long has he been been a Senator? Six months?
Am I being too picky? Do I just not know enough about these candidates' records? Positions? Hopes and dreams? Why isn't there one candidate that's wow-ing me enough to want to even vote come election time?