Making the most of my "Dash"

Archive for the ‘Love & Marriage’ Category

On the Motorcycle Class, Old Man Moses and being “THAT” student…

Over a week ago I mentioned that I am a big, fat, squawky-type chicken when it comes to quads and three-wheeled ATV’s.  Then I said I was going to take a motorcycle course.  Makes total sense, right?!  Obviously I survived the class, since you’re reading this.  I’m here to tell you that everyone else around me survived too.  Thank goodness.  However, I was really worried about Moses.    Truth be told, I still am.  But not from me running him over on accident.

The first day (night, actually) of our course, we had to do a classroom type setting.  We all were supposed to come prepared by having read our handbook and answered the questions in the back.  I was the first person there (insert Mister rolling is eyes and saying, “of course”).  A woman in her 60’s showed up shortly thereafter and sat by me.  A few other people trickled in, all in their 50’s and 60’s, and then Moses (not his real name) showed up.  I kid you not.  This guy, with his wispy white hair, translucent skin showing off his spiderweb of blue veins came shuffling, SHUFFLING, into class.  Wearing shorts and long tube socks.  FOR REALS, people!  And, class went from there…

The lady next to me proudly proclaimed to any and all who would hear her that she “just bought a Can Am!!!”  Then she would lean over and whisper to me, “I’m TERRIFIED of taking this class tomorrow!” Repeatedly.  RE-PEAT-ED-LY.  Then there was the woman all decked out in her Harley-Davidson gear (remember…CLASSROOM night) whose  husband came strutting in with all his HD gear on as well and asked if he could “sit-in” on the class to get a “refresher”.  Seriously?!  Yo, buttface, I just paid $250 smackaroonies for this class that you seriously want to sit-in on?!  The instructor said it was fine, particularly since he didn’t have a choice since the dude quickly followed his request with, “most instructors wouldn’t be okay with this, like they’ve got some issue with other people listening in on it or something.”  Yeah, he was THAT kind of dude.  Ugh.

Since everyone had supposedly done their homework, instructor-man said our four hour class should only be two and half hours. Tops.  But, he underestimated Moses and the HD chick and their ability to actually follow instructions. And hear (Moses).  And pay attention.  Three and a half hours (and 50 “I’m terrified’s” from Can Am lady) later, I was headed home, anxious to get to the actual motorcycle riding the next morning.  I was also anxious about Moses.  Most concerning to me was the fact that Moses should not be driving, much less motorcycling, on our public roads.

Morning came, and all but one of the students made it to class on time.  Moses was late.  I was full of nervousness. We were told to pick a bike, and get on.  I wondered if Moses had slept in.  Then, I wondered if he had died in his sleep overnight.  Then, I felt like a schmuck for thinking such a thought.  Then I wondered if he had family living with him and, if not, how long it would be before someone found the body.  That made me sad (it happens around here in this retirement community, you know), and a bit perturbed at my morbid thoughts.  During this time the instructor was telling us that he had coned off  two of the three entrances to the parking area we were using and should anyone attempt to come in that way he would “give them hell”.  Right after he said that, we noticed Moses was pulling up to the parking lot and aiming to turn in to one of the two coned-off driveways.  Those big neon pylons ain’t got nothin’ on Moses.  But, Moses must have realized at the last minute that he probably didn’t really want to enter that way, so he went to the third driveway.   Also, I was very relieved to know he woke up that morning.

So, there we were, 6 students on our bikes waiting for Moses to get on his so we could start class.  And, we waited…and waited. And Moses shuffled himself on over, helmet in one hand, gloves in the other.  He got to his bike, bent his head down, took a breath, braced his hands against the motorcycle seat, and shakily put a leg over.  Did you read that? SHAKILY PUT A LEG OVER.  I had the thought that I was probably going to crash during class, and I knew it was NOT going to be my fault.  Moses slowly put his helmet on, then his gloves, and then we were ready.  I  totally expected Moses to be THAT student.  You know, the problem student.  The one who can’t get their crap together and everyone has to wait for them.  So you can imagine my surprise when it turned out to be ME.  For the first 20 minutes of class at least.

Let me first just say that I was the one really terrified of class.  Not Can Am lady, I think she was just pretending to get attention for her Can Am.  I was straddling my bike, and the motor was purring (well, in a choppy idle anyway), and I felt like a HAWT MOMMA… Just until it was time to let out the clutch and duck walk it across the parking lot.  Seriously, NO ONE looks ‘hawt’ duck-walking a bike.  But, I was about to get my hawt back on as soon as he said we could lift up our feet and ride it back.  Except that my feet would NOT lift up.  My brain said, “lift” and my legs said, “oh HELL no!”  For some reason, I was in the midst of an outright limb rebellion.  I thought I was going to fall over, and I REFUSED to be the student in class who dropped their bike.  Not me. No way.  So, I duck-walked-attempted-to-ride-wobbled-duck-walked.  A LOT.  In fact, the whole class had to continue to go back and forth across the parking lot while I tried to figure it out.

I wanted to cry.  I wanted to quit.  But, I am not a quitter.  I asked myself why on earth was I even doing this.  Then, the instructor-man’s wife (who also is an instructor) came over to help.  She was my motorcycle angel.  She told me I could DO this.  Then she told me my ass seemed to have a mind of its own.  Yeah.  Seriously, she said, “I don’t know what’s going on, but your problem is that when you start to lift your legs up your ass  starts wiggling all over the place.”  I had NO idea what that meant, how that was happening, or what I was doing to make that happen.  I just stared at her for a second and said, “Well, it’s big, so it takes time for it to stop jiggling and settle down, you know??”  Except that she didn’t know,  she couldn’t possibly know, because she was this pretty petite blonde thing. But, she did appreciate my smart-assery about the whole subject.  After holding up the whole class for about 20 minutes doing an exercise they all got down within 2 minutes, I finally got my feet up and made it 20 feet across the parking lot. Yay me!  Then the instructor said it was time to move on to the next exercise… Going around the parking lot.

I did fairly well after that.  I stopped being “THAT” student.  Thank the Good Lord above.  Because that was awful. I managed to do a figure 8 inside a box that was probably about 15′ wide by 30′ long. I only stalled about 6 times the whole class, and every time it was in front of the instructor.  Of course.  I didn’t drop the bike, but I did take off straight for the instructor several times.  He really only had to jump out of the way twice (oopsies).  By the way, if you ever take a course and the instructor points in a direction he wants you to go… look in that direction, not at him.  Because if you look at him, you’ll head straight for him.  Every. single. time.  Also, you’ll look like an ass.

In case you were wondering about Moses, he only fell asleep on his bike (while we were stopped and listening to the instructor) once.  He did have to go get a chair to sit in, in between course set-up changes, because he was too weak to stand.  He couldn’t turn his head very well (which makes turning on a bike down right difficult), and he could barely hear the instructions given.  Or see the instructor’s hand signals, apparently.  But, he passed, even though he had to duck walk some of it himself.  And that, right there, should scare the living daylights out of anyone motoring around Havasu.

After passing the class, I felt like a HAWT MOMMA again (albeit with a big ass… thanks for that, instructor-lady).  I came home and Mister got the Honda Magna out and we took it back down to the now-emptied parking lot where I had just learned to ride.  I was ready.  I was excited!  I got on the bike and realized it was MUCH bigger.  A lot heavier.  It dawned on me that I had only just been qualified enough to ride a little 20HP Suzuki 250 around this parking lot, and now I was on a 78HP Honda 750.  And, I became terrified all over again.  I duck walked it.  A LOT.  I finally got the courage to put my feet up, and did ok (apparently the Magna is big enough to handle my fat ass).  I went around in a circle once.  One thing I did a couple times during class was to forget that the right handle is not just a handle… it’s the throttle too.  We didn’t have to use hardly any throttle at all during class.  Lots of clutch work, idling, and maybe second gear.  So, let me tell you that when you’re on a much bigger bike, and happen to be nervously turning in a circle, it is NOT ok to forget that your right hand is on the throttle… and then accidentally goose it.  I almost shat my pants.  I shit you not.

I was pretty much done on the Magna after that.  Mister took me out to another area the next day to practice some more. I did, but I am still extremely nervous on the Magna.  We all got sick with the flu after that, so I didn’t get to practice anymore on it.  Mister could see that I was visibly stressed by trying to ride the bike, but I was giving it my best.  I don’t want to be so scared that I won’t even get on the bike, and I was starting to head down that path.  The Mister, as he does in all things, observed all of this and made a plan.  That man bought me another bike.

Ruby.  Rebel Ruby!

Ruby. Rebel Ruby!

SERIOUSLY!! He just bought me a bike today!  He knew I was comfortable on the little Suzuki 250, so he went on Craigs list looking for that or a Honda Rebel 250 for me.  He came up to me at 11:30 this morning and said, “Missy, I’m leaving for a couple-three hours”.  Since Mister and I are basically never apart, I just looked at him and said, “Wha….???  Gone?  For THREE HOURS??  Where are you going?”  He told me he couldn’t tell me, and he took off.  Except he was gone for FOUR hours.  And he brought me back the prettiest little Rebel in the whole wide world.  She’s an ’87, a rebuilt engine, aftermarket pipes, chrome engine guard (and highway pegs), sissy bar, and the seats look fantastic!!  The gears are smooth, the brakes are great, and I can RIDE it!  And I did too.  I hopped on that baby and ran down to the cul-de-sac and came back with a big grin on my face. By the way, her name is Ruby.  Rebel Ruby.

Riding down the street with Ruby.

Riding down the street with Ruby.

Seriously, Mister rocks my world.  I told him thank you about a billion times tonight.  When he said, “Why?!” after the billionth time, I told him it was because he didn’t need to do this at all.  That I could have learned on the Magna.  It would have been the hard way, I would just have taken a longer amount of time to get my confidence up; but that him getting the Rebel made it easier for me.  His reply?  “Honey, my job in life is to make your life easier.”  I. Love. This. Man.

Well, that’s the whole motorcycle story “enchilada” (as Mister just said).  He thought I was going to just write a post about the Rebel, but I’m far too wordy for that.  Context is important.  People (me), need the background story.  Plus, I was dying to tell you all about Moses (NO pun intended there.  Seriously).  If you made it this far in the post, I’m impressed.  And, I’ll leave you with wishes for safe riding.  If you’re not a rider, watch out for them, ok?

An Unexpected Hiatus

Hello!  Hello… Hello… Hellooooooo (echo, echo, echooooooo)?!

While I certainly didn’t plan to take any sort of break from blogging, I just looked and saw that my last post was March 16th of 2012… 301 days ago.  7,200 hours ago.  432,000 minutes ago. 25,920,000 seconds ago! (Just in case you needed it broke down like that.)   Time has just whizzed by for me.  So, I will do a brief (well, as brief as I am capable of being) post of what has happened since March of last year.

Grand Canyon

Taking a ride on The Grand Canyon Railway!

First of all I did NOT forget my anniversary on May 7th.  Mister planned a great little trip for us to Zion National Park and the Grand Canyon and we took that in late May.  The landscape in our desert states are simply beautiful, and surrounding myself in it was a feast for my eyes, heart and soul.  We went to the Grand Canyon via The Grand Canyon Railway, and it was so much fun!  I absolutely love to travel with Mister.  So many new experiences and lots of laughter shared between us!

Mister's son is an expert on how to efficiently relocate to another state!

Mister’s son is an expert on how to efficiently relocate to another state!

In June, some of my favorite people in the whole world, Mister’s son and daughter-in-law and granddaughter, moved to Havasu!  We are thrilled to have them here, even though we tried to warn them off.  Really, we tried to tell them not to come here.  Not because we didn’t want them to move here, but because the beginning of summer is the absolute worst time to try to acclimate to the desert.  Particularly when previously living in Oregon.  However, they did great and sweated through the Arizona summer heat like champions.  I think they’ve acclimated pretty well, because now we are all freezing our patooties off as it’s currently 39 degrees outside.

In July, we had the monsoon season to beat all other monsoon seasons.  Frankly, I’ve made a rather disturbing observation about our weather.  First, this past summer was one of the most humid in a LONG time.  All the local-yocals were talking about it (but not in front of the tourists… no, we buck-up and tell them that we’re used to this sort of heat and frown down upon them for complaining).  Then, we have this crazy monsoon storm that tore out roads, washed cars away, and created havoc all over town.  Now we’re having the coldest winter in a long time.  My only conclusion is that Mister’s family moved here from Oregon they brought some of the weather with them.  This crazy weather is all their fault.  And THAT is unacceptable.  I’ll have to have a chat with them to send it back.

People 'round these parts don't really make the best decisions  when a monsoon hits.  Obviously.

People ’round these parts don’t really make the best decisions when a monsoon hits. Obviously.

We had a lovely Thanksgiving with Mister’s family here in Havasu.  There’s nothing like spending the day with a loving family to help you appreciate all the blessings we are given.  Christmas was lovely as well.  We had a pre-Christmas celebration with the family here and then Mister and I spent Christmas eve and day together in Laughlin, NV (the kids were with their dad for the holiday). We have so much fun together, and this was no exception.  Plus, how can you go wrong playing three and  a half hours of slots on one twenty-dollar bill?!?! Tons of laughter, love and hugs; that’s what our life together is about!

Now it’s January and you may be wondering what prompted this rambling catch-up post.  I suppose it’s that I started to miss writing.  I am one of those people who learn something new and go gung-ho at it for a while.  Then, I see something else new to do and attack learning that with a vengeance.  The other “interest” tends to go by the wayside.  This blog was also  my therapy for a while.  I  had things built up inside my head and heart and I just needed to release it.  Once it was out, I had nothing more to say.  I felt lighter, and happier, and freer than I had for a long time once I had cleared out my head.

I started this blog to remind me to fully live my life.  To enjoy every moment with my husband, children, and his (now MY) family.  And, I found my groove…  I did my thang!  I am living my life!  And it is flippin’ WONDERFUL.  Seriously!  I think another reason I stopped blogging is because, honestly, how many posts could I write about how amazing life is being married to Mister before I drove you all nuts?!  I think we all know there would be A LOT of posts.  Because it really, really is amazing.

I remember a friend of mine asking me how another person (that we both know) could keep writing about her absolutely adoring and incredible  husband, and her super-fantastic life, incredible kids, and blah, blah, blah…  That made me hesitate about writing more things like that here. While I don’t want to sicken anyone with constant sugary tales of Mister mushiness, I realized that it doesn’t matter what other people think.  I don’t write about the salty-teared tales of the “discussions” between Mister and I, but they have happened.  Not every relationship is a rose-garden of beauty, and of course ours is no exception.  It takes hard work, and communication (reluctant tho I may be to “communicate”), and it’s not always clear or easy to make that happen.

I suppose I said all that to say that despite the “discussions” Mister and I have (or maybe because of them!), he and are are living a beautiful life together.  I am spoiled rotten, and I hope he feels the same.  We spend a lot of time in The Love Shack, mainly because now I’m learning to quilt.  Remember the jumping from learning one thing to the next I talked about up there ^? Yeah, basically it went from Crochet to Blogging to passing my Amateur Radio Operator test to Quilting.  I love sewing and spend a lot of time at my sewing machine.  I’ve made tons of crafty things lately, you can see them here if you would like.  My daughter even compleminsulted (yeah, that’s new word  I just made up) me by telling me they look like things I bought at the store.

Speaking of jumping from one hobby to the next, I’m taking a Motorcycle course the weekend of February 1st.  Hopefully I will be riding Mister’s Honda 750 Magna not long afterwards! Also just as hopefully there will be a fun blog post about it rather than a “you are NOT gonna believe what I did…” type of post.

Well, that’s the catch-up.  Not too much funny, not too much snark, and not too much mushy.  Just Christine living her life, and being ever so grateful for it!

So, tell me… How have YOU been? I’ve missed you! 

Valentine’s Day and Lowered Expectations

Me and My Sweetheart

For many, many years, my birthday, Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day, and anniversaries were not really celebrated.  I often heard, “Sorry, it came up so quick I forgot to get time off” or “Sorry, I didn’t have enough money.”  (or apparently any time to even do a handwritten card). I also had (and probably still do) a habit of replying, “It’s ok. I don’t mind.” to these sorts of comments.  I certainly didn’t want to make the other person feel bad.  Even though it made me feel bad, very bad, inside.

So, in order to compensate for the disappointed feeling that I would get when these holidays came around , I just decided that Mother’s Day wasn’t for me anyway.  It was for my mom.  Plus, it’s just another way for the card companies to make money.  And Valentine’s Day… Well, Valentine’s Day was a stupid holiday anyway.  Chocolates were too expensive, flowers were astronomical, restaurants were too busy, gifts were too expensive, and all the lovey-lovey people were just annoying.  So with my lowered expectations (that were met without fail), I was never disappointed around these holidays.

Well, turns out that was another life.

Mister is having no such attitude from me.  My vocal protests of the extra holidays that “don’t mean anything” can not withstand the determination of my “romantical” (to use his word) husband.  He refuses to let Valentine’s Day pass without some sort of token of our love expressed.  Preferably homemade.  He does not like the commercialization of the holidays either, but his determination comes from a desire to prove to me that I am worth thinking of on these days.  I am worth going to the store for a $2 (make that $5, nowadays) card.  I am worth a box of chocolates.  I am worth being taken out to dinner.  I am worth his thoughts and his time.

The only thing that makes his view of Valentine’s Day acceptable to me is the fact that it doesn’t have to be Valentine’s Day for me to have these things.  I’ve come home countless times to fresh flowers on the entry table.  To a bag of snack size Reese’s Peanut Butter cups.  To a card that says, “Just Because I Love You”.  I get taken out on a date-night almost every Tuesday evening.  Every day with Mister is Valentine’s Day.  I know without a doubt that I am his sweetheart, and he is mine.  So, when Valentine’s Day arrives tomorrow, Mister and I will spoil each other a little more usual.  And I will take this opportunity to tell Mister some of the things I love about him:

  • I love how you say, “Good Morning, Beautimus!” to me every morning when we wake up.
  • I love that you always want to hold my hand.
  • I love how you try to anticipate my every need and meet it, even before I know I have a need.
  • I love how you try to race me to fold the laundry… and how sometimes you’ll try to be sneaky and do it when I’m not paying attention.
  • I love that you like cooking our meals together.
  • I love that when something needs to be fixed in the house, or on the cars, that you take care of it…as soon as possible.
  • I love how I never worry about being broken down and stranded anymore.
  • I love how your eyes turn soft, and your mouth smiles, whenever you look at me.
  • I love how you like to snuggle on the couch in the evenings.
  • I love how you help the kids with their math homework (because we all know that I’m clueless).
  • I love how you help me be a more patient, kind, and loving parent to the kids.
  • I love how fair and kind you are to the kids, and because they know that is how you are, they respond so well to you.
  • I love when you kiss me on the forehead.
  • I love how you always give me time to work out issues when I’m upset, and that you never let me get away with shoving an issue aside rather than discussing it.
  • I love you for trying to always make my life calm, and as stress-free as possible.
  • I love you for knowing when something’s bothering me, and that you never ignore it in the hopes that it will just “go away”.
  • I love you for making me feel so beautiful, that I no longer criticize myself whenever I look in a mirror and see my body.
  • I love that when I look at you I *know*, without a doubt, that you love me too.
  • I love you for encouraging me; for reminding me that I am a smart, capable, strong, and brave woman.
  • I love you for being the kind, patient, giving, loving, sensitive, romantic, intelligent, capable, and wonderful man that you are.
  • I love you for seeing me.

The Love Shack

The Love Shack! (Notice the Love Bears?!)

After the garages were finished, Mister and I got to work on turning some of the old garage (that’s what we named the garage that was existing before he added the other two garages) into a temporary hobby room.  It   is the perfect place for Mister’s Amateur Radio and my scrapbooking and miscellaneous hobby stuff.  It is a 32′ garage, so we took the last 10 feet and made that into our room.  We’ve still got plenty of room for the parked cars, and Mister’s toolboxes and work bench.  Mister told me to plan on two weeks for us to just get the wall framed and up. Sounded perfect to me!   Turns out, we got it up in 24 hours’ time.

We weren’t looking for anything fancy, just something temporary until the kids move out (the last kid leaves in 7 years, 3 months and 2 weeks… but who’s counting?!), and then we can reclaim the two other bedrooms in the house.  I told Mister I was perfectly fine with paneled walls.  I was impatient for it to be done, it’s temporary anyway, and I didn’t want to deal with the messiness of the drywalling, mud, tape, & texturing process.  So, in one weeks’ time we had the room completed.  We didn’t get a big carpet remnant as we had planned, but that is no big deal to me.  There is a fairly good sized scrap of carpet in there where I have my space, and that’s works out nicely.

Mister had been storing an unassembled day bed in the garage, so I told him he should set it up in the room.  It’s a great little place to sit and work on embroidery.  I also told him if he ever wanted to escape from the craziness of the house, it would be a perfect nap spot.  It ended up being the first thing he set up in the room.  I’m not sure what he’s trying to say with that…

When we were moving our things into the room I made a comment about having the perfect spot in “my scrapbook room” for an item.  Mister looked at me, smiled hugely and started cracking up.  He just pointed a finger at me and said, “YOUR scrapbooking room, huh?!  I KNEW you were going to try and claim the whole place for yourself!!”  Against such a Freudian slip, I had no defense.  We are very playful and tease each other a lot, so he wasn’t being mean and I wasn’t really trying to claim the room for my own.  I am thrilled with being able to share a space with him, as I enjoy being in his presence as much as possible.  However, to cover my little error in speech, I told him that we must rename the room and I jokingly called it “The Love Shack”.  It was just a joke, but the name has stuck… Oh well, it’s cute, and I love it!

Here are some images of us getting the room done from start to finish:

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Dear 16 year-old self, you are not welcome here…

A peek at my 16 year old self...

I have set a timer for 15 minutes.  I have to do that because I know that I  get so lost focused with what I’m doing.  Whether it’s blogging, responding to email, facebooking, reading a book, reading someone else’s blog, cooking, baking; the list goes on and on.  I need to be able to come up for air every now and then, and the timer helps me remember to do that.

This became a problem for me recently when Mister let me know that I was so deeply immersed in other things, that I seemed to be going down a different path.  Alone.  Without him. Without the kids.  In my own world, which was consisting of “other people’s” virtual worlds.  I became a bit very incredibly defensive.   That always results in my not hearing things that are said, in the context in which they are said.  Simply put, my emotions take over and I put a completely different spin on what I’m hearing.  Thus a rather difficult “conversation” ensued.  One in which I regressed to an old, and highly inappropriate, response.

“I’m in trouble.”  That has always been my main reaction whenever a situation arises where someone is upset.  Whether I was responsible for making them upset or not.  Frankly, that was the expected response for most of my life.  I have realized that I have often resorted to becoming a 16 year old girl in the presence of my parents.  That young girl would do anything to keep her parents from becoming unhappy with her, and even lived her adult life with that attitude.  If I did something that upset my parents, I was reprimanded for it.  Even as an adult. That never went away after I moved out and started my own family.  If I did something they didn’t like, then I [felt like I] was “in trouble”.  My “fix” to that would be to stop doing whatever it was that “got me in trouble”.

I understood what Mister was saying about my time and attention not being exactly where it should be. So, some of you may have noticed, I disappeared from the interwebz.  Sorta.  For a time, at least.  I didn’t want to make the blog disappear, as I think there may be a post or two that’s important enough to need to be out there.  During the course of my conversation with mister, I realized I felt pulled in too many different directions with the blog, my facebook page, other people’s facebook pages, and a particular facebook group I had joined.    So, I shut it all down.  To get out of being in trouble.  And then I started thinking.

I can take days to work through things.  Mister has had a difficult time with that.  We have agreed that there should be no unspoken resentment between us.  We both always want to be open and up front about whatever is going on in our minds and hearts.  So when I need time to digest things and figure out how I really feel about something, he has to make himself let me do that alone.  He would rather us work together to quickly resolve whatever the issue is, but I have spent so much of my life giving the expected response that now I really need to spend time figuring out what I really think.  We also always and ever try to do things to make the other person happy.  We both want what is best for each other.  And I came to realize that I was giving up things I wanted to do, because I thought it would make him happy and keep me from being in trouble.

I felt stirrings of anger.

And resentfulness.

This was badness.  I knew that either one of us sacrificing something that is important is not what our relationship is about, nor what either of us wants.

I woke up in the middle of the night and realized that my emotions, defensiveness, and inappropriate “I’m in trouble” response, had made me unable to hear what Mister had said during our conversation days earlier.  I heard him when he said, “I feel lonely when I’m sitting next to you” and “I feel like I can’t interrupt what you’re doing without upsetting you”.  All I knew was that to make him not feel lonely I needed to give him my undivided attention, and be able to do so at any moment he desired it.  But, that is NOT what he asked for.  I knew that he would never ask, nor want, me to give up things I enjoyed to make him happy.  That is exactly the opposite of what he wants.  All he was saying is, “I want you to be available. Not to other people you don’t really know.  Be available to me. To the kids.”

I also became acutely aware that the reason I had become so engrossed in doing other things online was to avoid having to think about an issue that, while I was only an outside observer, caused a great stir of emotion within me.   I had so many thoughts swirling around my head that needed to come out.  I was getting really pissed off, but I wasn’t ready to deal with that yet.  So I read other people’s blogs and threw myself into putting great thought and effort into commenting on their posts.  I felt a pressing need to distract myself by responding to any little comment directed at me on the internet.  I have since realized that there was nothing wrong with doing any of those things, and Mister was not “mad at me” for doing them either.  What was wrong was doing them to avoid an issue, and at the exclusion of other people.  My real priorities.

I discovered that I was in the midst of creating a situation of resentfulness between Mister and I. After a week, I had been able to understand the real issue, and was ready to discuss it with Mister.  He was shocked to find out that I felt I had been in trouble.   This particular response of mine is so foreign to him, that he does not recognize it.  He would never treat his own adult children that way, so he has no concept of any adult feeling like they are in “trouble”.

I love the relationship that I have with Mister. It is taking me some time to grow into my adult self.  Despite my occasional misperception of being treated like a child, he has NEVER treated me that way.  In my time with Mister, many of my reactions and responses have taken him completely off guard.   When I start to revert  to the 16 year-old, people-pleasing, “I’m sorry… I’ll never do it again… Whatever you want…” persona, he gets fairly upset.  He doesn’t want that.  No one who loves another person should want that.  Not even parents should want, demand, ask, or even tolerate that behavior from their grown children.  Logically, I know this.  Sometimes that darned 16 year-old in me takes over and tries to “fix” things the only way she knows how.

I write this not because I want to put our “stuff” out there… but simply to show that, as in all relationships, we are human and we have to communicate to work through our stuff.   Every one will lose focus of their priorities at one time or another.  I think it happens more now than ever, simply with the advent of the internet (particularly FB!).  I was headed down a path of anger and resentment that could have done some serious damage.  I was strong enough in myself to say that what I thought was the right fix was not working for me (this is not a familiar action to me).  I mustered up courage to tell my husband that very thing, and to tell him that I had completely misunderstood him in my defensiveness.  I experienced growth, in that I realized I don’t need to be defensive with my life-partner.  I simply need to communicate what I need, and hear what he needs.  I need to really LISTEN.

My timer has gone off at least 6 times since I started writing this.  Mister has rolled his eyes at me every time I stopped and came over to him and gave him a kiss.  I’ve reassured him that I am not setting the timer for him, but for me.  I don’t want to get so lost I can’t hear the kids when they call my name.  What I’m doing is not so important that Mister has to wait for an hour and a half before asking me a question.  I do this so I don’t forget that while writing makes me happy, I have people that make me happier.  I want to be available to them.  And… much like Mister, I love those little kisses!

Something special happened on May 7th…MAY 7TH!

Hey... It's official!

This morning when I got to the table, I noticed that Mister was on my FB page and was busily typing.  He shifted the computer so I couldn’t read what he was pounding out on the keyboard, and I laughed and told him that I would not read it.  I immediately got busy trying to find a “Good Morning” picture for the page, as I usually try to do every morning.

I was in middle of typing out my good morning message when I noticed Mister kept looking at me and then my computer screen.  After the fourth time, I remembered that he had posted something and I asked him if I needed to see it before I posted my picture. “I don’t know” was his reply.  I just looked at him funny and asked him again if I really needed to stop what I was doing and check it out.  This time I got a coy look and, “I don’t know, maybe….”  I huffed a little (ok, A LOT), because I knew I had to stop in the middle of posting a picture, copy what I had written, and go see the page.  In my mind, I was already focused on having to go back and start reposting the picture again and admittedly, was a little annoyed at the thought of re-doing something I had already started.  And then I saw his post:

“Happy Semi-Anniversary, Sweetheart. Six months ago today, we were married! I continue to see that my first impression of you was very accurate. When I first saw a picture, the word that came to mind was “Empathetic.” I see that many folks get to see that in your writings and pictures also. I love you, Beautimus!”

And my first thought was, “ARRRGGGHHHHHHH!”  I even smacked him on the knee.  I must explain why THAT would be my first reaction.

I feel like I’ve been married to Mister forever.  Not in a bad forever kind of way either.  We were already so completely committed to each other that our official wedding day was just that… the Official Day that it was “government” approved (and the day we went for a really cool boat ride!).  As such, EVERY day is a special and wonderful day with Mister.  It also means that I constantly forget our anniversary date.  I even blanked on it when I went to the Social Security office and they asked me what date we were married.  I gave the man a blank stare, and then frantically searched the marriage certificate for the answer.  Thank goodness Mister was sitting there, and he calmly said, “May 7th.”  Yes, that’s it, May 7th! Note to self: Sear this date somewhere in your brain, and not in the What-we-had-for-dinner-last-Tuesday part of it.

Needless to say, every month that has passed since our wedding day (MAY 7TH!!)  I have forgotten our little mini-anniversary’s.  Mister, ever the romantic, has remembered every single month.  About a week ago I remembered and I told him Happy EARLY Anniversary.  He refused to accept it and said I was cheating.  Hey…whatever helps, I’ll take it at this pathetic point.

Since my early anniversary comment didn’t count, once again, Mister remembered first.  I was determined to remember the 6 month anniversary too.  But, like I said, EVERY day with Mister is special and wonderful.  So, it’s understandable why I would miss this one. Right?! *Hangs head in shame* I will NOT forget the 1 year anniversary.  I will not, will not, will NOT!

Mister… I love you with all that I am.  You have made my days so wonderful that I can’t even differentiate between the special days and the “specialer” days.  You bring out the very best in me, and every day you remind me that I am a valuable person.  You have loved me the way no one on earth has ever loved me before.  Always aware of my strengths and weaknesses; always encouraging one and ever careful to never abuse the other.  These months have flown by, and yet they feel endless.  You make my life beautiful!

Living my dash with the most wonderful man ever…

Christine

Testy? ME? Noooooo…

Various pills

Candy! Oh, wait...

I wrote a post not long ago about how I’ve been trying, REALLY trying, to lose weight.  I mentioned that my doctor and I agreed to use a metabolism booster since my body seemed “stuck” (to put it in the simplest terms possible).  It’s been two weeks, and I know it’s doing it’s job.  And THEN some.

Let’s just say these pills are better off being called “Testy Pills”.  I think Mister has a very different name for them.  Taking them really contradicts my normally good-natured disposition. I seem to be constantly annoyed be every little thing nowadays.  Apparently I’m also snapping at Mister.  A lot.  I didn’t realize it until the other day when I mentioned to him, “I think this pill makes me feel irritable.” His immediate response was a very loud, “You THINK?!”  Apparently “testy” really is not the right word. But, he did follow that up with letting me know he understands this is not how I am, this is not how I want to behave, and we both know why I’m even taking them.

I’ve been annoyed at the ADD-like effect this gives me.  I have a much greater empathy for those diagnosed with it.  I get really frustrated that I want to get something done, but then I can’t finish it because I’m already focusing on doing something else.  Even sitting here typing this is annoying for me because I want to get this blog post done, but I can’t seem to focus on it properly. I’ve rewritten it twice now.  *sigh* I’ve actually been meaning to write this one for over a week, but it has just seemed like it would take too much time to sit down and type it.

I am more impatient than ever now.  While we were shopping today I wanted to ram the cart into some lady who cut me off.  I also wanted to smack the elderly women in the store taking up the entire aisle while looking at a something on the shelf.  Normally people who do that still annoy me, but I’ll patiently wait and then smile as I pass them.  But not today. Today, I had this incredible urge to grab the nearest item and chuck it at her while yelling at her “MOVE IT, LADY!!” Actually, I didn’t use those nice words inside my head.  I had better ones for her.  Obviously, I restrained myself from doing any of that since I’m sitting here typing this and Mister is not bailing me out of jail.

I’m doing fairly well at keeping the irritability under control.  The fact that Mister has come back into the house, interrupted me twice while I’ve been focused on this, and each time I was able to stop and smile at him, is a testament to how well I’m keeping it under control.  I am happy that I only have another two weeks of this.  I’m sure Mister is a lot more anxious for that time to pass and is counting down the days.  I have definitely seen some progress with the weight-loss, so at least it is working.  I do have to admit to being very concerned about how I’ll feel after I stop taking these.  I stopped drinking coffee, for obvious reasons, but I may end up having “four cup” coffee mornings after this is over.  Or maybe I’ll start sleeping. A lot. Either way, Mister is going to want his nice Missy back, and not this psychotic, almost homicidal killer of rude-women-shopping-in-grocery-stores.

(Make that four interruptions now, but who’s counting)

Keeping the dash interesting (from my perspective anyway)

Christine

P.S. I would be very remiss if I did not make note of the fact that directly after I finished writing this and went with Mister to pick up the kids we had what we’ll call a discussion.  Mister asked a question and I answered.  Mister then asked if I was feeling “testy”.  Now, maybe I’m the *only* woman in the world who gets her back up at that, but that comment was rather, er…. provocative.  I really wasn’t being testy with my response, I was nowhere near that, but Mister repeated that I was not “being myself”.  And after THAT, I went from perceived testiness to actual testiness.

I only write this to say that [while I did not acknowledge this in our resulting discussion] I realized later he probably was right.  (Do you know how hard that is for me to say? VERY hard.) I really didn’t mean to be harsh, sharp, testy or whatever with him.  But, I’m thinking that this medicine is not bringing out my bestest, brightest, and shiniest qualities.  I think he may have intimated that, but I’m sure it got lost between thoughts of “I am NOT being testy” and “not being myself? REALLY?!” So, while I oh-so-nicely (ha!) insisted that I was completely fine as he was insisting that I wasn’t, I might have overlooked the fact that the medicine has indeed made me testy AND sensitive.  I have to do a mea culpa here and say he is the one more likely to be correct given the current circumstances.  And once again, I must put out in the internet world (where it lasts forever) that he was right and I was wrong.  Ugh.

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