Posts Tagged ‘parenting

09
Nov
16

Words Hurt

Sunday afternoon, my younger daughter was invited to go to the local trampoline park with a friend. The girls have been friends for a long time and I was glad to have them hang out as I really do like this particular friend.

Up until this point, I have only had the opportunity to deal with the girl’s father as her parents are divorced. This outing was to be under the mother’s watch. Before leaving, my daughter said that she had been warned by her friend not to discuss politics and that her friend had told her mother not to bring the subject up. I thought it was a little odd, but let it go. As always, I made sure my daughter had sufficient funds for the outing and left to run some errands.

When I returned home, my daughter was still there. The woman was almost an hour late picking her up.

A couple of hours later, my daughter returned. She adamantly stated that she would never do anything with the woman again. Upon some probing I was able to get a few issues out of her:

The woman did not have change and wanted to purchase a locker. My daughter paid for the locker and upon putting her own belongings in the locker, the woman snarled her face.

After they played for some time, the trio wanted drinks. My daughter’s friend said they would just buy the drink since she paid for the locker. Instead of doing so, the mother pulled the daughter aside, but not out of hearing distance and said she would NOT buy my daughter a drink. My daughter had to go back to the locker room and retrieve her own money. She purchased herself a big blue slurpee and made her daughter get water.

Then, the woman started talking politics. My daughter tried to politely change the subject and the woman pressed the issue. Apparently, she really pressed the issue and my daughter finally had to say she did not want to talk about it. To change the topic, the woman started talking about how great her job was and how much money she made.

On the way back to my house, they stopped and grabbed dinner-the mother and daughter did. They did not ask my daughter if she wanted anything which was a little rude but whatever. She proceeded to tell her daughter that she had to get a salad even though it was her “cheat day” because she did not want her getting any fatter. The mom got a burger with an extra patty and sides.

My daughter was completely floored as she told me about everything that happened. Not only was she appalled at the way she was treated by an adult but she was more upset over the way the woman treated her own daughter making issue about her weight and such.

The next day at school, the girl apologized for her mother’s behavior and repaid my daughter out of her own money which was totally not necessary. She said she was sorry if her mother insulted her and my daughter was taken back because while she had been rude, it was not insulting. With that being the case, my daughter asked what she meant and the girl said she was talking about the comments that the woman made about our house.  I guess it was not up to her standards because I need to trim the hedges and I have a board that needs replaced on the porch.

There is just so much wrong with the situation that it makes my blood boil. First, don’t be ugly to my kid. I am not entirely sure why there was a chip on the woman’s shoulder from the get go, but you don’t treat kids like that period. Second, I don’t care how big your kid is, you do not shame them. You definitely do not shame them in front of their peers. Frankly, maybe if you were seriously worried about your kid’s size you would skip the fast food period, but whatever. Acting like that is what leads girls to sneak food and then purge later. It damages their spirit.

While I probably should not be as offended as I am over the woman’s comments and actions, I am pissed. As I said before, I have never met this woman. For the years I have known her daughter, I have never laid eyes on her at a school function. She has never been in the car pool lane in front of or behind me. I do not know what their situation is, but I do know that she is not there. I guess taking her kid to do fun stuff and bragging about money is her way of making herself feel better.

My house might not be the nicest on my block, but it is mine just like everything else that we have. I am the ONLY parent my girls have and it has been that way for ten years now. Things like replacing that board on the front porch gets put on the back burner so that I can pay for field trips or name brand shoes for my kids to fit in with the rest. Yeah, my hedges need trimmed, but put that off. Instead, I decided to take my last free weekend to take my girls camping because we had been going nonstop since July with marching band. Yeah, I am that involved parent at EVERY event, or as close to it as I can manage while working full time building my career, not just a job, and going to school full time to better myself. I do not have the luxury of being that fair weather, fun parent but I try to let my kids have a normal childhood and you can bet that if I am inviting someone else’s kid somewhere that I am going to ask if they want a drink or need something to eat when I order for myself and my own kids. Regardless of how much or how little money I have, I will treat everyone that is in my presence the same. I am the ONLY parent my girls have and it has been that way for ten years now. Things like replacing that board get put on the back burner so that I can pay for field trips or name brand shoes for my kids to fit in with the rest. I cannot always give them everything, but I try to give them some of the things they want.

I am tired. I am overwhelmed. I seem to stay that way, but I do it because I want more for my kids. To hear such crappy things hurts because I do try hard.

People really need to think before they speak.

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24
Sep
16

Dating Chronicles: Ditched

Last week, I got bored and glanced at POF to see if there was anyone new and interesting. Much to my surprise, there was. One guy in particular caught my eye. We went to school together, although I am a couple of years younger, and have a few mutual friends. I always found him attractive. I have just never had the opportunity to introduce myself.

So I decided to reactivate my account and see if he would notice. He did and indicated wanting to connect, so we started to talk and he asked if I would like to meet for a drink.

Normally, making plans can take some finagling on my end, but we did not have a game last night, so I said sure. He is a single dad and had to get a sitter, so we planned to meet up after she arrived. We were going to meet at 8. It ended up being closer to 9 because his sitter was late, yadda, yadda, yadda. As a single parent, I let it slide. Been there done. Done that. Still it kind of set the tone for the evening…

We met at a bar that is close to both of our homes. We share some small talk and then he asks if he can tell me something. Of course, I agree. “You look a lot thinner in your picture. That’s okay though, I like bigger girls.” Um, thanks? The picture is from December. I have gained a few lbs since then, but not that many. Way to boost my confidence there.

Apparently, according to my best friend, that should have been my cue to leave, but I stayed and we chatted for a good bit. I gave him the benefit of the doubt that he was nervous. He was talking a lot and was loud. Nothing terrible, but opposite of me in those situations so it was a bit much.

After a while, some people that he knew came into the bar. They started chatting and, eventually, they ended up joining us. I had nothing to contribute to the conversation and was growing very bored. We had discussed going downtown for a bit, I asked if he still wanted to go, and we made our exit.

The first bar we went to downtown is one that I actually enjoy. There was a good band. I was told that I had to try a particular mixed drink which was actually pretty awesome. My date went out to smoke and ended up being gone for a very long time. I actually started to wonder if he left. I was pretty much over it and ready to go home when he came in and apologized. He had run into someone he knew. He asked if I wanted to go to another bar because I had mentioned never going to that particular one before.

Bar three was okay. We were able to talk some more. I started to think that the guy might not be terrible. He shared that I was his first date in sixteen years which explained a bit of the awkwardness and nervousness. I had just about resigned that he was not a lost cause. We were preparing to leave when I ran to the restroom. I came back and he was not at the table.

I thought it was odd, but I just assumed he had stepped outside to smoke. I went out the front door and he was not there. I thought maybe he had gone to the restroom. I sent him a text to say I was outside.

A couple of minutes pass and I got a text from my date. He had left. In the short time that I was in the restroom, he said his sitter called and he needed to take his son to the emergency room because of an infection. It just so happened that there was an Uber waiting outside of the bar (how convenient), so he just hopped in and ditched me. DITCHED ME!

Now, I think this needs to be said. I am a parent. If there was something life or death, sure I would jet. This was a teenager. It was not life or death. He could have waited a minute and told me what was up.

So, back to the story. Seriously. He ditched me. Thankfully, I had driven us and my car was parked by the first bar downtown we had gone to. However, that meant I had to walk alone, in the dark, downtown back to where it was parked. I do not like walking home alone in my own neighborhood from my homebar at night. Dangerous shit happens, even in Roanoke. Not beuno. Needless to say I was shocked. It was such a crappy thing to do that I had to laugh. Who does that?!

I woke up this morning to a text from him that pretty much outlined everything that was not good last night. The guy acknowledged being a mess, said he knew his chances were slim, but that he really liked me and thinks I am beautiful. Yay, I am beautiful even if I am fatter than the picture he saw initially. Go me! Ugh.

So that was that. Have not responded to the text. Pretty sure that I am not going to even though that is generally not my nature. I keep replaying the events of the evening and just don’t even know how to process. I just do not even know what to say in response to all of that. I am still in shock and offended at how it all went down.

31
Aug
16

Independent Baby

I will never claim to be a great parent, but I try hard and have not killed either of them yet, so I think I am winning. As the girls have gotten older, I have come to appreciate their independence and the freedom that comes with having teenagers. That being said, I really do try to be a good parent and present as much as humanly possible.

With the new school year, however, we have new challenges with my being present. My younger daughter has a zero period class meaning she has to be at school over an hour before her sister and it is her music class, so she is transporting her instrument. Being nice, I have been driving her which makes me leave around 10 minutes after waking up my older daughter.

In the afternoons, my older daughter has marching band until 6pm. If I go to the gym after work, it is generally from 6-7 or 7:30. So on good days, I will see my oldest from 7:30 to 11. However, she is not a night owl and is usually in bed between 9 and 10. So I get a big hour and a half some days with the kid.

Mondays are a little crazy, but this one was a bit more than the norm. We did the new normal for the morning. I saw my oldest just long enough to wake her up. My younger had a lesson from 6-6:30 which threw off my time, but I was out and about when my older got released from band, so I drove her home. After I picked up the younger, I headed to the gym where I met my best friend and we worked out for an hour, then we went to pack some of her apartment for an upcoming move. When I got home it was 9. Both girls were in the bed-shocking! Really, it was. I figured they would be up to chat a bit at least, but since they were not, I ran back out and had a drink with my friend.

Tuesday, was another off day. The morning was normal. I did get to see my oldest for a minute because she was not feeling well and skipped band. I saw her for about 15 minutes when I ran home to pick up my younger daughter to go to Back to School Night. We were there until 9, and I had a late dinner with the girls which was immediately followed by my oldest dragging her butt to bed.

I have seen my oldest for maybe an hour over the last two days. During this time, she has tried to talk to me about her school stuff, but even while I am there, I am going in a zillion different directions. She brought this to my attention yesterday afternoon as she told me that she does not have a mom these days. She is an “Independent Baby.” That’s right. She is not an adult (her words), but does not have a mom this week.

Initially, I was amused by the comment. Honestly, I still am. This week has a lot more going on than most. I would love to be more present and I guess I could, but that would require eliminating things that I value like being a good friend. I am really thankful that I have an “independent baby” that can handle being on her own a bit from time to time, but after the last couple of days I am looking forward to a little slow down.

 

26
Aug
16

Warning: Crazy Lady

I lost my shit.

I would love to say that I have a great reason. I really don’t. It has been a mountain of things that piled up into one explosion of me yelling, slamming doors, cursing under my breath, and just being an all-around nasty person. I don’t even want to be around myself today.

I am just over it all this morning.

  • It is the first week of school. I have been fighting with the school constantly over my kids’ schedules with little to no response from their guidance counselor. Their last attempt made everything worse and, in turn, my youngest has been a royal pain.
  • It is my final week of classes, so assignments are due at midnight tonight. I was up until 1am writing a 16 page paper. I still have a test and business plan to do before midnight around work and our first football game.
  • My sleep schedule is off because one of my daughters was determined to take a zero period class
  • My house is a disaster and we have company coming over for dinner before the game tonight
  • No one has done anything that I have asked them to this week. At. All.
  • My dog stinks and refused to let my kid pick him up for a bath last night. His tail is mated. Grooming appointment next week, but in the meantime, he looks unkept.
  • I am menstrual

Funny how typing out all of my issues makes me just look crazier. Seriously, I need to take a chill pill.

23
Aug
16

Returning to the Crazy

Routine has returned! Thank you, sweet baby Jesus! Excited to be returning to our brand of crazy-school, extra-curriculars, and busy social lives make me happy.

Yesterday was the first day of school for the girls and to say I was thrilled might be an understatement. It is kind of crazy that I am excited as I am since the girls are old enough to stay home alone and do whatever, but things just run so much smoother when we all have routines. And, even though it is only day two, I am already feeling better about life.

In an ideal world, I would resume my morning workout schedule and hit the gym from 5:30-6:30 daily. Yesterday, I overslept (the first day of school-go me!). This morning I did it. Funny thing but hitting the gym gives me a great start to the day. I am put together somewhat and was able to even start a load of laundry this morning.

This year is especially nice with regards to back to school since both of my girls are in high school. They are back on the same schedule for the most part. No more crazy long bus rides in the afternoons or worrying that someone might miss a bus in the mornings. We are walking distance from the high school-SCORE!

My younger daughter is going to be taking a zero period class if they ever fix her schedule. This will mean that if I take her, I will be out of the house early enough to actually get to work on time. As of right now, that is my plan. I may have to adjust my morning routine a bit for this, but I think it will be a good change.

With the return to us all being on schedule comes better life decisions. I am back on the meal planning bandwagon. Whichever kid gets home first starts preparing whatever is needed for dinner. Last night, my daughter had lasagna on the table by the time her sister and I got home. The crockpot is my friend a lot of the time and I have decided just to keep salad mix and chicken strips on hand if they don’t feel like eating whatever I have planned or if we have an off night for some reason.

In addition to the better eating, we all just seem to work together better when we have our routines. Chores get done in a timelier manner-the board is back. Family study halls become a thing. We all appreciate our down time as well. As if I do not already live for our Tuesday night crap television shows, I really appreciate it when we have all had two full days of crazy.

Funny how much the little things can make a difference. I am a tired, but happy girl this morning. Love our kind of crazy.

19
Aug
16

Reflecting

Confession. I have not always had the best self-esteem. Hell, I still do not. But I have come to the realization over the last year or so that I am actually pretty darn awesome.

I work in a career that allows me to help people. I make a difference. Granted, I do not get to help as many people as I would wish, but I still make an impact. And I can always do more.

I am a good friend. I keep my circle small, but those in the inner circle know that I have their back.

I have a great family. Seriously. My siblings tell it like it is and encourage me to do better. My daughters are my reason for living and bonus are two of my closest friends/confidants (within reason). My parents and grandma love and support me and the girls. And I still have a huge network of my ex’s family that is involved not only my kids’ lives, but in mine as well.

I will probably never be a skinny girl. I was never the one the guys fell over and may never be, but I have come to realize that I am not as hideous as the old me once thought. I have good hair and eyes. I might be shaped like a potato, but I clean up okay. Hell, I am my own kind of hot in pinup.

Physically, I am strong. Stronger than I was a year ago, and continuing to get stronger each day. I have come to enjoy the gym not just because of the activity but because I am able to free my mind for a bit.

Spiritually, I am a little more at peace and I am comforted knowing that the big guy upstairs has my back.

Mentally, I still struggle some days with self-esteem issues. I have my good and bad days dealing with depression. I overthink and stress, but it never keeps me down for long.

I am far from perfect, but I do have a lot to be thankful for. I love this life that I have created for myself and that is constantly changing. I am a lucky girl.

27
Jul
16

Buckle Up

Next Monday is August 1. Summer is over. Done. Finished. Really it was over this Monday, but August seals the deal. This week some of it has started with my oldest starting marching band, but the next few weeks will really seal the deal. By the end of the month, both girls back in school and extracurricular activities will be back in full swing. Looking forward, the fall is going to be insane. Football games, marching band competitions, RYSO practices, dance lessons, viola lessons, etc., etc., etc.

And then, there is me. As the keeper of the chaos, I am involved in all the above mentioned activities, but I also have my own life to maintain. In addition to my regular, full time job, I have registered for my fall classes last night. I may regret it, but I am going to go full time. I really want to push through going full time amidst all the chaos.

I have got to get back in the game and work on myself more with regards to diet and exercise. Hoping that August, while being hectic, can be a good starting point for making some changes to carry through for the rest of the year. It is not too late for me to hit my goals if I really try. So, I am going to give it a shot.

My social life might suffer, but I am kind of feeling like there is not a whole lot there as it is. My best friend and partner in crime has become distant over the last few weeks. Such is life, but it makes me sad. Luckily, a few of my other friends have resurfaced enough to keep me from getting overly depressed and the pinup group I am in has a lot of activities that will take place in the fall. I am too social to be happy just staying home all of the time.

Otherwise, I have had a few dates over the last couple of months, but nothing that has led to anything I am overly excited about. The one that I was most interested in has gone silent as many tend to do and as much as I do not mind putting myself out there, I don’t want to appear desperate. I am really not. I keep debating on looking more, but I really don’t know that I am even that interested. Of course, drunken me and lonely me will sometimes take the reins and make me look for a minute or two now and then. But it will take a special person to want to deal with all that I am going to have going on, so not sure I should really bother.

There ya have it. Looking forward, I think the remainder of the year is going to be rather interesting. It will be fun to see how well we can all manage with everything we have going on. Hoping to get some organization in place over the next few weeks and that I can get the girls to buy in to helping out a bit more moving forward so that I might maintain some sanity. Regardless, I think we all need to buckle up we are gonna be in for a wild ride!