Archive for July, 2005

some of my pieces

Well, I’ve stolen this from a few people but most recently Annie…hehehehe…so here goes.

People call me Traci. My dad used to call me Tracer. My grandfather called me TD. Somebody I once worked with called me JunkFood. My kids call me Mom…never Mother.

I have straight brown hair that my mother used to call mousy. It hasn’t looked straight in a gazillion years because I pay my hairdresser to make it long and beautiful and curly.

I don’t smoke. I have this huge paranoia thing going on related to my parent’s lung cancer too so I struggle to keep breathing when I’m around people who do smoke.

I rarely drink although the giant margaritas at Who Song & Larry’s tempt me every now and then.

I love caller ID!

I can fix almost anything given the proper tools and even without them, if I have long enough I can still do it.

I check my e-mail first thing every morning…well, not first thing…exactly…I have to fix my breakfast first. I check it at least two other times a day too and usually play a game or two online before bed. I definitely need a support group!

I drink Diet Squirt…having done away with caffeine about 6 months ago. I try to drink more water too but am still working on it. I figure a bit at a time with the healthier habits ok?

I had my gall bladder removed in January after years of stomach aches and heartburn. I was a regular visitor to the alter of Prevacid until then. Since my surgery, I haven’t had a stomach ache once!

I wish I was a neat freak.

I am really a slob instead…much to the dismay of my husband. (I tried to warn him, he chose not to listen.) I just figure I have my whole life to clean and only a few short years to spend with my children…he disagrees…too bad for him. I have much more fun than he does…and so do my daughters.

I have no idea if I suck at poker or not because I don’t know how to play!

I am excited my daughter is going to college and sad at the same time. I am the only person in my house who will miss her.

I don’t get frustrated quickly.

I tell everyone I am going to live to be 100.

My favorite singers are Reba, Wynonna and Martina.

I love to sing and have recorded two CD’s.

I have a low tolerance for stupidity and tyranny.

I am good at a lot of things but love very few of them.

I had a huge picture wall until I got married this time. Now I have all the pictures packed away. I wonder why?

We bought our house as a compromise. It had the two things I wanted most and the two things he wanted most. It was most definitely not my favorite house though but we’re getting it more right as time goes by.

I don’t like gardening but I do love power tools! My lawn tractor is so cool!

I think my husband loves me more than I love him…although I question his definition of love quite often.

Sex is not my favorite thing. I’m sure it has to do with my abusive past.

I have been in love with a woman. It didn’t end well however I could have loved her forever.

I was overjoyed to become a mommy.

I went to school to be certified as a Medical Assistant to conquer my fear of needles.

My favorite color is purple.

I have high cholesterol.

I love books.

I wish I felt like I was a good person.

I like shopping…most times.

It is still painful to me that my first marriage ended in divorce.

My dad’s death hit me harder than I expected.

Damn! There’s a lot more but I think that’s enough for today. Geez, louise, this could get ugly! Peace.

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thinking

Do you ever just get tired of thinking? I’ve got a few days off and this morning I went to the doctor for my yearly powwow with him. After blood drawing and chatting for quite awhile about all that is going on in my life at the moment, he writes my scrip and says come back in two weeks or so and we’ll start talking about this cholesterol program. Ok, no biggy. It’s written in my genetic code that I am going to have to work to keep my cholesterol levels controlled. Diet, exercise, meds. I get it. I’ve known this was coming for the last two years and since my mother and all her siblings take meds for the same thing, it really is no surprise. I’m not even worried about it so much. What does get to me, however, is the thinking…always with the thinking.

First, when I see my mom, who still smokes like a chimney, I want to hold my breath. I am so panicky. I understand that logically, I am at a very low risk for lung cancer because I don’t smoke and I haven’t lived with my mom for 22 years. That doesn’t change the panic. Or the breath holding. Or the thoughts that I need to go to the doctor every freaking day for the rest of my life to make sure I catch “it” before it gets too far along…whatever the “it” of the moment is. I like to think I’ve had a pretty straightforward view of health and health related issues. I don’t panic over childhood illnesses or accidents. I don’t believe my children have to go to the doctor for every single sniffle. I’m pretty laid back about it all. My husband freaks out if he gets a twinge in his arm, or his back, or anywhere else for that matter. I get sick of listening to him. Sometimes I think “If I have to hear about one more fucking symptom or pain or hitch, I am going to take his head off!” What is the deal with that anyway? His daughter is that way, his son is that way and his ex wife is that way. His ex wife even calls here to talk about her pains and those of their children. Their children are 25 and 22! Give me a break people. If they’re not old enough to take care of themselves, you all have royally FUBR’d your parenting duties.

So, anyway, now I get panicky. My therapist says it’s pretty normal given the stunningly rapid death of my father and the approaching death of my mother and I agree with her. It still doesn’t change the panic…at least not yet. I keep talking to myself and reminding myself these feelings are normal for this time in my life and I try not to worry too much. All this leads to stress eating. Can we say blimp? I knew we could!

My oldest daughter is leaving for college in approximately 6 weeks. She is totally excited and I am excited for her. I am so proud of her…and me too… because I got her there. The child who I was sure would be the death of me, is almost ready to fly the coop. What a huge accomplishment for both of us. I was sure for awhile she was going to end up in jail or something and now look. She’s flying high. I’m grateful she’s going and worried about how different it will be too. I just want to stop thinking about it for awhile.

I get online to read email, catch up with friends and check out Rosie’s blog while I’m at it. She writes of politics and what’s going on in our world with such fervor and sadness and strength and anger at times. I admire her and her words get me thinking… there is that word again. THINKING. I get so tired…of thinking and worrying and wondering and hoping and talking. Sometimes I just want to forget that our troops are dying in a war that has nothing to do with terrorism or Osama Bin Laden. Sometimes I just want to forget that I have friends who are in hiding right now because they have husbands who could very possibly kill them if they don’t stay safe. Sometimes I just want to forget that parents die and children grow up and move on. Sometimes I just want to forget that children get hurt everyday by parents and caregivers who have no right to mistreat them so. Sometimes I just want to forget that people I’ve never met are struggling to live in hospitals way across the country…and I worry. Sometimes I just want to forget that there is ugliness and pain and suffering and horror in this world I live in.

I don’t want to worry that my children will be safe on the way to school or on the way home. I don’t want to have to tell my daughters to be aware of their surroundings 100% of the time so they can keep themselves safe. I don’t want to know that one of my daughters friends does drugs and drinks to forget that her mother doesn’t want her to live at home anymore. I want to forget there are people in our lives who believe the only way out is suicide. I want to forget the worry and the fear and the death and the reality that this life of ours is so very temporary.

I want to remember the joys of creating and giving birth to my daughters. I want to remember how happy I felt the day I got married…both times even! I want to remember the joy of first footsteps and first words and first days of school. I want to remember little girl giggles as the snowflakes fall and the wide eyed wonder of packages under the tree on Christmas morning. I want to remember how beautiful our flag looks while blowing in the breeze with the bright blue summer sky for a background. I want to remember beautiful voices and big blue eyes and newborn cries and all the good and wonderful things about people…those I’ve met and those I haven’t. I want to believe there is good in this world…in spite of the ugly. I want to believe that terrorists have mothers who love them and that our president really cares about what happens to our soldiers and to our country.

I want to believe that there is a god and that he/she cares about what happens to us. I want to believe that whatever happens after we die is good and positive and that people who pass judgement on others will finally understand that it is not their place to do so. I want to believe that there are no bullies in our schools and that children don’t go to school every day scared. I want to believe that education matters enough to ensure that those who provide the education are adequately compensated. I want to believe that everyone can see a doctor if they need one and have a roof over there heads if they so desire. I want to stop worrying so much and start believing in more. I want to believe that I can make the world a better place and that I can teach my children the same. Peace.

ah the joys

Of having older children! My family and I spent yesterday at CountryFest. It was two of my daughters and a friend each, my husband, his son and son’s girlfriend, my mom and my aunt who is my mom’s major caretaker. It was hot but not too hot. It was fun and long and tiring. Guess what I did today? I slept. We got home last night and into bed after midnight. I slept until almost noon. Got up, ate and went back to bed until 6. I know, I know…the height of lazy but I needed it because it was no trouble at all to be there! Between stress and the long day my body finally had enough. I am grateful for the girls being older because I COULD sleep as much as I needed. Whew!

I won passes for my mom and I to have a special lunch in a covered tent and it was nice. The people there were awesome and very helpful as it was obvious my mom was sick. She started crying because she was so tired so I took her back to our blankets and made her take a nap afterwards. She did good but was so fragile looking I worried. I was right behind her and a couple times I just started crying because I was afraid this would be the last thing we get to do as a family before she dies. Maybe not though but it does hit at the strangest times.

The music was good. Wynonna was the headliner and she is so funny. I loved her part of the show and Jamie O’Neal was great too. There were 6 acts. The first three were so-so but the last three rocked totally! Fun, fun, fun!

I hear my girlies getting home now so I am off. Peace.

hmmmm

During the past few days or so I’ve been blessed to blog with some people who believe very strongly that their way…and only their way…is right. I find it interesting that so many feel so completely positive they know all the answers. I cannot imagine that for even a moment. I think it must be either very comforting or very stress inducing. Whatever. I am so far past the concept that I must be right about everything that it now simply intrigues me.

I remember being so sure my faith was the only one…the only way to live forever. I taught my children so well that one of them would go to school when she was in the first grade and tell the children there that they were going to die because they weren’t doing it right. You can imagine the phone call I received from her teacher when that child cried to her mommy. This child of mine now has a problem with feeling the need to be right all the time and feeling “less than” when she isn’t. She is a loving, searching, intelligent, spiritual person and she is very accepting of others feelings and thoughts and beliefs as well now. Was I right to teach her that way? I have no idea. Was I right to leave that way of thinking? I have no idea. Was I right to tell this child of mine that I didn’t have any idea whether that way of believing was right or not? I have no idea.

What I do know is that I am doing the best I can with what I have. I firmly believe there is a god or some higher power out there. I also believe that if that premise is truth, then he/she has to know more about us than we do. If that also holds true, it stands to reason that he/she also knows the reasons behind my life choices and the very real pain, agony and heartbreak that led me to make them. Given that “reality” (mine), I can only conclude that it will have to be enough. If I am not pleasing to that higher power and if there is a judgement someday, I can only say that I will have to face the consequences of my life on my own.

I refuse to make the presumption that I know best or better than someone else. I am, in fact, most grateful that it is not my job to decide who is good or who is bad. I have been blessed to meet some pretty amazing people through this blog and I am quite sure I will continue to be blessed in this way. I love the debate. I hate the contempt for others. I’m glad I know that I don’t have to be that way. Peace.

therapy

I’m sitting here in my cave of an office…not really hiding, but glad to be alone just the same. I can hear in the distance my daughters, my dogs and my husband…the sound of the sprinklers and the fans cooling our house and the muted noise of the tv as well. It is peaceful and my favorite way to wind down for the night. I love knowing they are here and love knowing, as well, that they will leave me alone for a bit.

Tuesdays are my therapy night. Yes, I have a standing appointment at 6:30 every Tuesday with Sarah…the therapist sent from heaven for this time in my life. My first therapist was perfect for the traumatic time in my life when I was seeing him. I am sure now that he would not be perfect for this time in my life and isn’t it interesting how we get what we need even if we don’t realize it at the time. Chris was there for the dramatic and traumatic memory work I needed to do. It was painful and scary and necessary. He was a rock, a savior, a friend when I most needed one. He held me up when I was in so much pain emotionally that it was reflected in my body with pain so severe I couldn’t sleep or move much some days. As the pain I had held inside me and blocked for so long finally found it’s outlet, he was the perfect soul to hold my hand as I found my way through. It ended up that Chris gave too much of himself and needed to stop working for awhile. He took all the pain of others so well and helped them so much, he forgot to take care of himself. He is better now and I love him dearly. I am also grateful not to be working with him now.

Sarah arrived at a time of great change. I was done with the memories for the most part. The physical pain had subsided mostly. I was newly single and newly alone in the world save for my three daughters and a few friends. I had a new apartment and a new tatoo that symbolized my metamorphisis. Ugly caterpillar to lovely butterfly. I was finding my way and taking care of my children and Sarah worked at their school. It has taken me a long time to trust her. She is a special soul. She now has her own private practice and my space on the couch is mine for an hour on Tuesday nights. Sometimes I don’t want to go…at all…ever again. Most times I go anyway. I tell her it’s hard for me and she asks “Then why are you here?” I reply the same way I always do “Because I know I need to be here.”

I want to feel normal some day. I rant about how long I’ve been in therapy. I cry and bitch and piss and moan and always she reminds me of how long I lived in horror and abuse. “It took you 28 years to say Enough, is it any surprise it’s taking a long time to get through it all?” It’s like being born again and I don’t mean as a christian either. It’s like starting from the beginning again and having to relearn it the way I should have been able to learn it the first time. It’s about learning that all the programs and input were wrong information and not really understanding what to do about it. I asked tonight “Do you think it’s possible that all the fear and anxiety are really a part of me that I will never get rid of? Were they made part of me physically because the abuse started so early?”

I wonder sometimes what the lesson is in all this. Why did I end up in a family like mine? What did I do in a previous life and why did I have to learn whatever it is that I’m not learning? One of my daughters asked me what I thought my purpose in life was recently. The answer is “I have no idea.”

Sarah asked “Why do you come here Traci? What is it you hope to get out of all this work?” My answer tonight: “I want to feel lovable. I want to feel safe. I want to feel ‘normal’. I want to have someone say to me “You suck!” and be able to reply “You have no idea how wonderful I am” and mean it. I want to feel… something besides numb. I want to believe.”

Therapy is hell. There is no way out but through. Onward…and upward… please god. Peace.

tears and fears

Two of my daughters got home awhile ago from spending some time with their father at a local swimming hole. I knew something was wrong when he asked to come in for a moment instead of just letting them out of the car and pulling out. It seems that daughter #2 and his new wife’s son #1 almost drowned this afternoon. At the swimming hole. In front of a bunch of people. And lifeguards. He rescued them. My dirtbag, lousy excuse for a father, idiot ex husband rescued my baby. He was scared and crying so I listened calmly while he told me what happened and he hugged the girls and left. Then I held my daughter while she cried and told me what happened. And then I held my daughter #3 while she cried and told me what happened. I got them to take their showers and snuggled them for awhile and then told them I needed to come write about this so I could begin my own process of dealing with the sick fear I feel. It’s odd but I had a strange feeling about them going swimming today. Very seldom do I think about not letting them go with their father. Today I did think about it for some reason. As my girlie was describing to me the burning feeling in her lungs and her belief that she was going to die and how frightened she was, it was all I could do not to scream thinking about what life would be like without her. This child is quite literally the light of my life. I got pregnant with her after 13 months of trying and two rounds of fertility drugs. I never thought I’d have another baby and I wanted her so much. She is as different from daughter #1 as night is from day and it has quite literally been a joy and an honor to watch her grow up. My other daughter, #3, arrived after 10 months of trying and 4 rounds of fertility drugs and she is the sweetest thing. I watched her face today as her sister talked about what happened in the water and I just know she was imagining what her world would be like without her as well. Once upon a time, not too long ago, she told her sister that if something happened to her she would never want to smile again. These two girls love each other so much. I am so grateful my baby is ok this evening. I bet that I will cry off and on for several days about this though as my brain and body process that fear. I just pray I can help my girls as much as they need me to help them. Peace.

the face of evil, fairy godmothers and cancer

After days of reading about the London bombings and seeing the faces of those being held responsible for the carnage, I am stunned that the face of evil and it’s actions appears so non threatening. I guess on some level I realized that before but it surprised me no less anyway.

I received in the mail yesterday…with no return address…two tickets to a concert that is happening here next weekend. I have my suspicions regarding my fairy godmother but haven’t had a return call from her yet. Odd to be sure but fun all the same.

Today my mom learned she is effectively at the end of options for the treatment of her cancer. The doctor thought she might be a candidate for a study but when she arrived home they called and told her she isn’t. We’re all weeping and I want to sleep now. My mom’s doctor hugged her before leaving the exam room today. She’s never done that before. It was a message for me I think…I don’t know what everyone else thought but I had the feeling it was her way of telling us that it really is over and she is sad. She did tell my mom there were a couple of other things they could try but they don’t tend to work with cancer related to smoking so I don’t know if my mom will do them or not. She may not even remember the discussion tomorrow. Time will tell but with a tumor the size of an orange (a month ago) and 8 more pounds lost, it’s a sad, sad thing. I’ve said it before and I’m sure I’ll say it again a gazillion times but today it is especially so…I HATE CANCER!

Peace.