Looking back and looking ahead

Who would think a blog is so hard to keep up with! Today I am upgrading my site and getting things in order – there are so many things I want to try to set up and so little time to do them. Looking ahead in 2012, there are a lot of things I will be tackling.

Ira is doing good now and looking for a new career path after some life-changing events that befell him. Two months ago, he was forced to give up truck-driving. Being on the road alone for so many hours at a time was not good for him. He had too much time to think and all the bad memories of his childhood and the bad experiences with his family in the last few years, finally got to him and he suffered a break-down of sorts. Thank goodness Papa John was able to help. He left the warm temperatures of Florida to stay with us for a month, endurring our more chillier ones while he helped me get Ira the help he needed. Ira’s sister Beth was a big help too, letting Ira know she was there and that she understood his feelings. So after a month of intense counseling and deep soul searching he is preparing himself for a new life – and hopefully an improved and healthier one.

As for me, my time at Education Minnesota will total three years this upcoming week. What a mixed bag that is! I still love where I work – and I’m doing something good in the world – helping to advocate for Minnesota teachers at a time when many politicians are against them. And when I think of the dysfunction at my previous job and the unbelievably unfair treatment that was doled out daily by its co-founders, I know I’m lucky to be where I am. My two bosses are fair and understanding and I am never blind-sided by unrealistic expectations or off the wall demands. But deep down, I have to admit there is this part of me that knows I am missing something – I’m not sure what – but there is definitely something amiss and I hope I can find what it is before too much time goes by.

I had heard Scarlett was out of town over the holidays, so I waited, and finally two weeks ago I mailed her a package. I included another recorded book. This time it was, “You Are My Sunshine,” and I sang it to her like I did the Rudolph one I sent last holiday season. And at the end I said I would always love her. I hope Yas let her have my presents and that they didn’t get tossed or given away. I never know with Yas, but that doesn’t stop me from trying.

In addition to the books, I included a small weaving loom and lots of weaving material so she can make lots of potholdersand placemats. It makes me smile to imagine that. :) I also sent a Charley Brown holiday book with music (even the holiday is long over) plus some treats. As I packaged it all up I remember hoping with all my heart that Scarlett will know she is always remembered and that I am not a bad person despite what she’s been told by her mom.

I think back when Yas first called me and asked if I wanted to know when her baby girl was born. I remember firmly saying no, without a moment’s hesitation. Obviously shocked, Yasmina asked me to explain so I told her there were a few things I knew without doubt. I said that I knew her baby would be beautiful and perfect, just like she was – and I also knew I’d fall in love with her at first sight, like I did with her. And as sure as I knew that, I knew that without a doubt she would not think twice about keeping her from me should she ever get the whim. I ended by saying I also knew the pain of that would kill me.

“No,” Yasmina promised over and over, and it wasn’t until after hours and hours of talking into the wee hours of that morning, that she convinced me to trust her so that I finally agreed to join her at the hospital.

And so I was. At the hospital. And so I did. Fall in love with Scarlett at first site. And so she did. Take her away from me at a moment’s whim. But surprisingly so, I was wrong about the rest. I didn’t die. I stayed alive. But the truth is that for the past three years, I have spent every single day of them missing the little girl who is everything I knew she would be. Knowing that Yasmina lied to everyone about what she was mad about hasn’t helped either, but I’ll keep hoping that one day Scarlett will know me for what I really am.

Jeren is doing good. He has an apartment now and trying to be more responsible. My youngest son took a while to get where he is, but I’m happy that it finally happened. There was a time I seriously wondered! Mychal is busy with his life and I’m sad to say that it doesn’t include a mom. And Mathew is still too hurt and angry to want to come to terms with anything to do with me. The sad reality of that is that after all this time I’m just too tired to keep trying to get through to either of them.

Myrtle Anabelle at nine, is finally starting to show her age. Bossy as ever, we only joke when we call her a bully. Ira and I think she deserves everything she wants because she’s given us so much over the years. But I dread the coming times and I can’t help but wonder if next year’s posts will include anectdotes about our oldest baby. Mister Snickers is not far behind and I wonder about him a little too. Thankfully Chanel is doing great and miniature poodles have a much longer life-expectancy than Saint Bernards or Boxers.

That is it for now. Till next time.

 

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