Archive | November 2010

The Coziest Place on Earth

Sorry it’s been so long but it’s been crazy and I’ve been too darn tired and worn out to write.  Let’s start with my visit to San Francisco.  Loved it!  Well, I didn’t see that much of it, but what I saw I liked.  I shopped a bit when the Precious allowed me to.  And no, I’m not kidding.  I don’t think we’ll be accompanying Daddy on any more business trips.  He was completely undone by his strange surroundings and we couldn’t get a moment’s peace with the toddler who demanded to be walked and entertained EVERY WAKING second.  And when he slept, he emitted a strange roaring/creaking door sound that kept waking us up throughout the night.   We lived in fear of the crisp sheets rustling when we turned over would wake him up.  And when he was awake there was lots of shrieking, food throwing and door banging.  Oi!

As you know, I met up with Luna, her hubby and her fabulous little girl, J.  We have both come so far.  2 years ago, we sat and chatted about dogs, adoption, life and blogging.  This time we sat in the world’s most coziest home, had velvety butternut squash soup and frittata (and wine for me – yay!) and talked.  Outside  thunder rumbled and lightning flashed and the rain pelted the windows.  The children actually napped.  And when they woke up, our kids played together.

Our kids played together.  That phrase means so much to me.  My little guy reached out and held her little girl’s hand.  He adored Luna and gave her a hug.  A connection over the internet, shared grief, shared yearnings, shared journeys, shared growth… and here we were with our heart’s desires at long last.   It was what the Buddhists call a “myo ho” moment.  I did get a little misty.

The men talked as we fed the kids.  It was great that they had so much to say to one another.  The Precious observed his older playmate eating with her hands and that was that.  He decided that that was the way to go from now on.  We had to leave way too soon but we had a long drive back and we still had to pick up a few things before we returned to the hotel room.  Hubby had a convention to attend the next morning and we were trying to keep the Precious as close to his schedule as possible.

I have to admit, I had been feeling very worn out and frayed.  With all the stuff that was going on with my mum, the “wonder” weeks of my son, I just wanted to be with someone that I didn’t have to explain anything to.   I wanted her to meet my son,  to lay eyes on her little J.  (ohmigosh, the sweetest cutie pie ever – had hubby wrapped around her finger in no time!)  Her victory was my victory.  I wanted her to know just how happy I was for her.   I left there feeling calmed,  nurtured and listened to.  She fed me, wined me and sent me on my way with gifts.

We had so much more to blab about, but it will have to wait for another time.  Thanks for being there for us, Luna.


PS.  I almost forgot the best part – she made LEMON SQUARES!  I DID THE HAPPY DANCE!  Delicious!!!!

Thanksgiving for real

Today was my son’s birthday.  American Thanksgiving Day.   It snowed today.  I took the time in the morning to just stare at him.  He stared back and smiled.  My eyes filled with tears of gratitude.  Yes, I am most thankful for him today.  I wasn’t there to see him the day he came into the world.  We still went to singalong class and everyone sang Happy Birthday to him.  He really seemed to know they were singing to him.  He looked at everyone and clapped his hands and squealed in glee.  We went to the park in the afternoon and I met up with  a friend and her dog.  We walked and talked while I pushed his stroller through the snow.  His breath fogged up his weather shield.  He fell asleep which meant that he would be awake by the time I got back home, eliminating a long nap and time on my own to do chores and whatnot.

He had fish bite for dinner with yam fries – I tried to shove in some baby food but he wasn’t having it. There’s a sheet under the highchair now as meal time is often quite messy. Hubby brought home wine for me, the one I drank when we first brought him home.  It’s called Faith.  And he had his first bit of cupcake with icing.  He loved it!  Just us three. We’ll have a big party on Saturday and hopefully, I’ll get all the preparations finished.

It was a long, exhausting day.  Not much got done.  I didn’t even have a shower.  I don’t care.  Today was my son’s first birthday.

So much more to say……but I’m too exhausted to write more.

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A very productive day

Of course, somehow my cell phone was off this morning and the staff at my mum’s care home were trying to reach me because there was a CT scan cancellation at the hospital.  I was out in the park with a friend and her two little boys on a lovely crisp fall day.  It was a spontaneous event that I almost resisted because I knew it would throw off our morning schedule, but the sun was shining so I was in a good mood.   The Precious really enjoyed swinging next to his 3 yr old “cousin” and watching the other kids.  Oh, well, I don’t think I could have made it anyway.  So the next date for a CT scan is on the 17th.

I got that part.  Guess when it’s filming?  The 17th!  Yay!  Sigh.  Yay!  cause that means I’m on my way to SF.  Sigh, cause now I have to figure out who can take my mum to the hospital for a CT scan.  Hubby might be able to do it and if not, well, something will be figured out.

When we finally got home, the Precious was worn out; he only had a 20 minute power nap but of course, he wasn’t about to have go down again, even after a hearty lunch.  DH came home early and once he heard him, that was out of the question.  Luckily, DH had to go back out again and so the fun factory was unavailable to him.  I had learned my lesson though,  I didn’t force him, I just put him in his playpen and he amused himself until he got sleepy.  Then a warm bottle of milk, and off he went.  Instead of enjoying some lovely housekeeping, I did my mum’s taxes.  At some point, it fell off my to do list.  Okay, I procrastinated.  I claim my son as my number 1 reason why I don’t get around to doing unpleasant tasks – like taxes.  My tardiness has come back to bite my ass.  Her care home called the other day.  If I don’t do her taxes, her subsidized care home fees go up (not to mention late filing fees, accrued interest on whatever she owes, and the list goes on).  I go through a year’s worth of her bank statements, tally up the required information and then discover I have not received T4s for her income of pension and old age security payments.  I make the dreaded call to revenue services, certain I will be sent to telephone queue purgatory, but I actually get an agent in 2 minutes.  Wow, what’s next – world peace?

I finally got in touch with a cosmetic/skin care line lady that I’ve been playing phone tag with lately.  She came over a few weeks ago  to leave some free samples.  I think she wants me to be an independent consultant, but I made it clear I had  no interest or time to do it, but I ordered an expensive product I don’t really need anyway. I am due a cheque soon anyway, so I thought I could splurge on myself.    I’m a sucker for women who do these kinds of businesses.  Back in the day, hubby convinced me to join him in something similar  (HUGE MISTAKE, but  a learning experience) and it’s amazing how your so called friends don’t want to support you.

I made pea risotto for the Precious’ meal tomorrow (but asked DH to pick up sushi for dinner),  committed to doing a lecture on Buddhism at a community centre in the new year, an interview about A Mother’s Story this weekend and  my Buddhist buddies and I rescheduled 2 meetings without too much fuss and bother (but a lot of daimoku).

And yes, I even showered and shaved my legs today.  Today, my friends, was a good day.

May you live in interesting times

I heard back from one of those auditions – the smaller part, of course, but I’m on the short list.  And so now I’m hoping it shoots before I plan on going away.  I’m not sure why it takes then so long to decide if they want me for the part or not, but hopefully I’ll find out by the end of the week.

I also have had a couple of conversations with my mum’s doctor.  This morning she called me back and let me know she went back to see my mum and is now ordering  a CT scan.  I have to say, hubby was surprised they didn’t do that earlier, but I guess better late than never.  Also I hired a personal care aide for her 3 afternoons a week to pay close attention to her.  On Friday there will be a conference so that everyone can be on the same page.  I have to admit, I’m very pleased the staff have responded they way they have.  Of course, it took a few phone calls, but that’s what I’m here for.  I don’t expect miracles, here I just want her to be okay as she’s going to get.

Everyone is RSVPing that they’ll be here for the Precious’ first birthday party – so that should now be about 20 people (spouses, partners and kids included). Oh, man, what have I done?  Everybody likes Kentucky Fried Chicken, right?  I’m going to have to put away the breakables.

Now there’s a leak under the sink from the dishwasher so I’m waiting for a plumber.  See?  Told ya!  Five minutes of peace and appreciation and now back to the regularly scheduled chaos.

The here and now

Last night we celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary.  DH brought me a HUGE bouquet spotted with 9 roses, red and yellow and two exotic lilies representing the kid and Juno.  It was really nice.  We put the Precious to bed, the babysitter arrived and we went out to dinner.  I dressed up a bit.  Sequinned black top, black skirt, sweater jacket, tall boots and jaunty hat and a new hairdo!  I also provided DH with some two shirts and a casual jacket so he had something new to wear.

We went to a small restaurant that had small and medium sized plates so we ordered a bunch of dishes to share.  It’s so rare we have undivided attention for each other.  We exchanged cards with lovely things written to each other.  I found a card that said “You’re a Wonderful Husband and Father”.  That was kind of cool.  I still get a kick out of things like that.  I told him how proud I was of him for working so hard for his family.  We talked about the kid a bit, mum, blogging life, and we even talked about adoption. I shared some things I had learned about others’ experiences with open adoption.   He acknowledged that our process with adoption had been really hard on us though this first year with the Precious had healed us.  The work and the business of raising the wee beast  pulls us into the here and now, it doesn’t allow us to dwell in the past very long.  No matter how crappy the day has been, he still has to have his needs met.  I can be bought with a smile apparently.  He cares not a whit that I like to sit and contemplate my navel quietly.

We took our time and we were the last ones to leave.  We went home and looked in on the wee one and took the dog out for her last pee and cuddled up in bed.

Even with all the crises with my mum, I actually caught myself feeling content and happy with life.  It’s completely unrealistic that life remain static and I know we have challenges ahead.  We have to move soon, Christmas is coming, there are family  issues to deal with, but I put worry aside for a couple of hours and tried not to find fault in my self, in my partner, in my life.  I realize I don’t do this very often, hell, almost never. There’s always a voice in my head that finds fault with this or that.  Buddhists call it fundamental darkness.  I told it to shut the fuck up.  Nam myo ho renge kyo.    It felt really good to just be at peace with the here and now.

Bits and pieces

I’ve been feeling pretty weepy this past week.  Not sure if it’s the fact that the Precious is almost one year old,  hormones, long lost friends or that my mother has fallen down twice this week.  I took the kid up to see her on Wednesday and she was sleeping.  I took the opportunity to talk to the staff who definitely noticed a decline in her lately.  Then she woke up and came out.  Her left  eye was puffy and badly bruised, the white of her all pink.  I was struck by her fragility.  My little man reached out for her and grabbed her finger when she said her usual “Heyyyyy!’.  He knew her and looked into her eyes. She could recall his name but not mine when I asked her.  I was so overwhelmed, tears flooded my eyes and I struggled to keep it together.  I mean she knew who I was, she just couldn’t retrieve the name. I had spoken to a physical therapist earlier this week who had suggested a walker, but when I got there, there was none.  Since she fell and split her lip I have been all over the staff making sure they follow through in a timely manner.  So far they have been extremely cooperative, but it’s times like these that make me want to get ugly.  I want to start yelling, because I can’t fix  her.

I asked the staff to ask the doctor to call me on my cell.  We talked and I asked about if a CT Scan or MRI would help give them more information, but the doctor assured me that she had not suffered a concussion when she fell, though it was possible she had had mini strokes. Apparently that is common with dementia, however it would not change any treatment.    I gave her some further information like lately she has been unable to follow simple direction even with physical prompts and she attempted to drink from a paper bag containing a piece of cake.  She suspected it falling was due to mental health medication and she would do something about decreasing it.  Of course. I left the care home barely holding it together.  I felt so helpless.  I chanted all the way home.  Had to take care of the kid.

Damn antipsychotics.  They had changed her meds due to her “becoming wild” – they didn’t inform me however) and now she trips and falls because she has no balance and shuffles.   This tinkering to find the right dosage may be standard protocol, but as you know with every drug, there is a side effect.  I’ve been down this road with her before.  One drug that can make her mentally sharper  started to deteriorate her body until she could barely swallow food.  Another drug made her wander off while I was changing in  a Sears dressing room.  It took an hour to find her and luckily she hadn’t left the mall.

I can’t bear to see her lose bits of herself.  The danger of her falling and breaking a hip is quite high and if that happens, what life she has will turn to shit and I’d rather she just die than fall apart bit by bit.  I know she’s not ever going to get better, but the life she has had, such as it was, was good enough to have a beer, share a laugh and walk in the sunshine with us.

I had two auditions  yesterday.  Of course, hubby is away on business.  It happens every single time.  He goes away and I get super busy.  I got a sitter in and managed to make it through the day, but I was so distracted.  Good parts, but I couldn’t care less about booking them.  Of course, they shoot when I’m supposed to go to San Francisco with DH.  Sigh.  Believe it or not, I’d rather go away.  I want to get on a plane with my family and just change scenes for a while.  As some of you may know, it’s not exactly a cakewalk travelling with an active kid, but I was really looking forward to it.  I need to hug somebody.  She knows who she is.

Last night, I sat on the edge of my bed and had a good cry.  I didn’t want to go to bed.  I just wanted to weep.  Cause today is another day, I hear the Precious babbling his morning song, and I will pull on my armour and once again, stand guard for my mum and take care of my son.

Almost a year

WE finally went to a fancy smanshy photo studio to get our pictures done.  A friend had bought me a membership there.  It’s not as if we haven’t taken a billion photos ourselves, but not too many of them include all 3 of us.  Hubby decided he didn’t want to bring a change of clothes like I suggested STRONGLY that he should.  Of course, this ended up limiting what the Precious and I could wear.  I have no idea why he thought I didn’t know what I was talking about, he was being very resistant.  A little self conscious perhaps?  I’ve done a few photo shoots in my time and I knew the photographer would have preferred to have a choice with what we wore.   And sure enough, he wanted me to change the kid into his little black suit.  The Precious didn’t take to that AT ALL.  Enter screaming, squirming baby with every item changed.  And I discovered the hard way that the white top I brought (that he had never worn) had sleeve ends that only a premature baby’s hands could get through.  We had to keep drying his tears while the baby wrangler tried to make him laugh.   DH started to whine as well.  Lovely.  But we made it through.  That weekend apparently the Precious didn’t want to be separated from Daddy so  I didn’t get a lot of pictures taken with him.  Traitor.

Then I had to sit through dozens of photos and pick my favourites.  Luckily I’ve had lots of experience choosing good shots, but I ended up getting the most expensive package – don’t ask, you really don’t want to know.  I HAD TO USE MY CREDIT CARD.  Yep, that much.  You end up seeing your kid oh, so cute and oh so well lit, you end up spending WAY more than you intended.  One sheet of one pose was $40.  Why would I sit through an hour photo shoot, change my kid twice and have the scene change a few times if I only wanted one pose.  Right.  That’s how they get you.  And of course, I thought I should own the copyright to the pics, so that was extra. But I made them work for it, I pointed out that in one shot I had a stray hair (where oh where was my hair and makeup crew) and a few opened gaps in my shirt.  Crop that please.  Photoshop that out.   (I didn’t really want to wear that shirt, but it was the only white one I had and you know who only had one shirt and so I couldn’t change into the other outfit that was nicer).

I guess family members will be receiving lovely pics of us for Christmas.

Then off we went to my BFF’s baby girl’s first birthday party.  The Precious wasn’t too thrilled at that point, like a few others weren’t… a party in the middle of nap times isn’t the best idea.  Of course, if your kid still has two naps a day, there isn’t really a good time for a big gathering.  It was a lovely low key affair with decorations and catered goodies (yeah, you know I was right by the sandwich table with a glass of wine.)  The kid was still sticking with Daddy so I had time to mingle and chat.  Wow, another type of event I would avoid like the plague and here I was having a good time.  DH even told me later that he had a really great day.

Of course, my little guy’s 1st birthday is coming up.  And I’d like to have a little “thing” too.  Of course, DH just wants his parents and the “godfather”.  I have my family of friends and fellow Buddhist members. So that’s like 20 people.   More people than I thought have expressed their desire to attend a party for him, but I wasn’t really thinking of inviting a lot of people, because when you invite this person then I feel you HAVE to invite that person and they have kids and then it starts to look like an event.  We don’t have an amenities room here and though our place is large, older kids need room to run about (and not trash the joint.) That leaves a family restaurant or a community centre.  See what I mean?

Oh, man.  I’m not doing this every year.