Category Archives: Marriage

On the 5th Anniversary of your last day of freedom

When we met, we were as single as two people could possibly be. Both of us were established adults with careers and houses. I guess that is pretty common in today’s generation of dating, but the point here is that I think we have done a pretty amazing job at becoming a team.

In 5 short years we moved from Italy to Summerville, quickly bought a house, started our family, sold that house and built the house we are in now. Castle Garvey. There are many big life changes that are missing on this list that we have survived together like losing my mom, losing a baby, jobs, health issues… only to make us stronger as a team. You are really been my best friend.

I couldn’t imagine doing any of those things without you. In fact, I wouldn’t have. I would still be wearing boots somewhere, white-knuckling it along in life. Drinking lots of wine to cope.

Instead, I am in THIS life with you. Thank you for never leaving my side; even when I told you to. You saw through the facade, helped heal my wounds and taught me I could let someone else take the wheel.

You inspire me everyday. When you set your mind to something, it will be done. If you are enjoying the process, it is amazing what you can accomplish. As a father, well, I have never met another dad like you. You are something to be treasured.

I treasure you today, tomorrow and the next day.

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I can’t account for Sunday. I work. 😉

I love you my mister Garvey, happy 5th Anniversary. I look forward the rest of our lives together.

 

To my Husband, About Yesterday

Yesterday was your birthday, and I realize this day hasn’t really been special to you for quite sometime. I am still trying to fix that.

I feel a birthday, no matter the age, should be acknowledged AND celebrated. Your life is not promised to you and it is not easy.

There are societal guidelines to follow (don’t shit in the street for example), expectations of you (earn money and pay bills with said money) and of course human principles we follow that make us a civilization (don’t slap people who make you angry, say thank you and perhaps get some paperwork that supports your ability to carry a weapon on your person).

You sir, did all of these and them some last year, you work hard to stay healthy and you woke up today. Let’s toast to that, shall we?!

I know we could not do much this year, as in go throw money away on food and booze, but we sure did fill the day with stuff that makes you happy. Dirt, quiet time, pizza and a mediocre cake that I baked you. And I loathe baking, dear. Yes I know, I had to have that mixer.

Anyway, this is a day late because I do my best work when the house is quiet and that is a rare moment around here. Your little likes to wake up ass early, just like her daddy. Today, however, she slept in and I found myself with some time to write and you were the first thing I wanted to write about.

I know yesterday was your day, but it got me thinking this morning  about how lucky I am and how I  have very fulfilled life. We both work hard on this life we have created together, we share similar goals and we have common principles that have held us together . I will save the mushy stuff for our anniversary next week, but I want you to know that I am a very happy and fulfilled woman, and that makes it easy to be a happy mom and wife. I love you, and I will continue to make a big deal about your birthday! Happy 37th.

 

Daddy and Charlotte

 

Fuck You, I Don’t Need Defending…

*If the ‘F’ word makes you uncomfortable and you are of the belief (still) that ladies do not use profanity, this is not for you. Please check-out one of my more ‘calm’ post. This announcement is to avoid any and all comments addressing the vocabulary I use.

Now, back to business…

This is gonna be a long one so get comfortable; make a drink, pour some vino, pack a bowl or grab some fuckin’ ice cream if that’s your thing. Just do whatever it is you do during your parents-only time. It’s story time and self-love time with suburban mishap!

Black and White

So where does this title come from? Well, the short answer is it comes from my soul and it comes from a place of self-realization. And it comes from a very uncomfortable situation, and the therapy that followed that situation.

But the long version begins like this…

The sentiment “fuck you, I don’t need defending” entered my brain and left through my mouth during a very private and vulnerable conversation with my husband amidst a very real possibility of separation.

I am a deeply private and I always have been. I am pretty sure this is the product of both nature and nurture. My family being of mostly German and English heritage, I am predisposed to being a bitch. Then top that with all my childhood drama and shitty examples of ‘loving marriages’ I have, it is no wonder I have arrived here. Here being on the door step of separation with refusal to give up on my dream of being happy in the one life I was gifted.

Since I left the nest many, many years ago I decided that I would not repeat history. Even in my adolescence I knew I wanted better for myself; in every aspect of my life. My young mind recognized that as far as ‘normal’ was concerned, my life was not it. It was not normal in any capacity.

Recently I have discovered that for some reason longevity translates to success in some people’s minds. For example, my mother was married for I believe 27 years to the same man. So some might say, well hell, she must know the secret to a long and happy marriage… I assure you that particular long marriage was a shit-show. Frankly I do not have one example of a marriage that I want mine to be like. That may offend some people, but it is what it is.

In my way of thinking, it is impossible to apply advice when there is no similarities in the desired goal. I don’t just want to be married for many years, I want to be happy, to be loved and to be respected and valued. I would like to get out of this shell I am living in and be affectionate and playful with my husband. I want to be spoiled and cherished, AND I want to do the same for him. More than anything, we both want to display a happy and healthy marriage for our daughter.

During this conversation the phrase “but I defended you” was communicated to me a lot. So for me, the deeper question was this, why do you feel the need to defend me? Deer in the headlight response. You know why? Because I simply do not need defending. And in this particular instance I was reminded again of my favorite talk show host Dr. Phil   Oprah. He She says “no matter how flat you make a pancake, it will always have two sides.” When one person is telling YOUR story things can easily become distorted, goals become forgotten and before you know it you can find yourself playing for the wrong team.

I know this about myself, I am determined to stay on my path and be happy. Life is too fucking short and you know, sometimes it is healthy to remind yourself (especially with this nagging depression and constant anxiety) that you are enough. I live my life with honesty, acceptance, love, and kindness. I am a good mom and I can say that without even blinking. I try very hard to show my daughter that we treat other human beings how we would like to be treated. I take a front-seat approach to being a mother and my heart strings are attached so firmly to my daughter that she is in the forefront of all my decision making.

Before this turns into a Mother Teresa type read, I know for certainty that I am not perfect. I have a heaping stack of areas that need improvement and need my attention. But I know this, acknowledging them is half the battle and seeing progress makes any journey better. Dr. Phil Oprah has mentioned a time or two that you can’t fix what you don’t acknowledge and I find this to be profoundly raw and simple to live by. Anyone who knows me now that knew me 5 years ago will tell you I am a different person, and not just because I now have my own personal side-kick.

I mention this because I am a person who requires proof and hearing from those who know me best allows me to say with certainty that I put self-work very high on my list of priorities. So as flawed as I am, I can say with confidence that I am moving in the right direction and I am staying on the path I want. Isn’t that all we can do?

If I was giving you my elevator speech, because say, you wanted to get to know me a little better…  I am a stay-at-home mom with two jobs that earn a steady income. I wait tables Friday-Sunday and babysit a few days during the week. I also make my husband help me around the house and sometimes I lose my patience with the members in my family. I know, what a dick.

It boils down to this simple notion, my dear readers. Fuck you, we do not need defending.

The intention of this post is NOT to make anyone feel anything other than empowered. It is not intended to be braggy or boastful in nature. I just know that sometimes it is necessary to remind ourselves of all the shit we are doing right in life and let all that chatter fade into the background where it belongs. If the chatter is your own annoying monsters like I live with, write it down and read that shit to yourself when you need a little reminder.

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Month 2 and 3

Not many things have actually taken place since the last post, yet here I am writing my planned update post later than I should have.

The part-time job waiting tables is going well. I mean it’s going out pretty much as soon as it comes in. So I would say it is successful.

Still nowhere to hide. Which in turn leaves just about no time for me to be alone long enough to stream in full thoughts, let alone get in down on paper or type it out. Which is the excuse I hide behind, but truthfully I feel like I am also experiencing writers block or lack of inspiration. There is a definite funk.

I don’t feel like arranging playdates on the few hours I have off and have free time. I can barely find the energy or mindset to get my always full list of things-to-do complete. Rather, I have been finding myself letting my mind wander and fantasize about the future far more often than I ever did before.

My husband must feel the same way, because we have taken a very large step-backward in our relationship recently. He has decided that he doesn’t mind the nagging and has decided that for now, he would be perfectly fine with me just telling him what needs to be done. How fun for me, guys. He has thrown in the towel and is fine with the nagging after all and has coined it “giving direction.” He doesn’t care to learn where I keep things, what chores need to be done, what needs to be bought, and so on. This is all temporary for him and he is not feeling motivated in the least to be here. Or happy or comfortable.

I get it.

He has secretly been visiting the house more than a couple of times a week. To watch the progress. I say secretly because for some reason at first I would get pissed if he talked about being over at “the new neighborhood.” I couldn’t really articulate why it annoyed me, but it did. And it did to a high degree.

After I saw some of the pictures he had been taking and sharing with other people, I was amazed at the progress. I realized quickly that I was only annoyed because I was jealous. Jealous that he had the time to drive over there multiple times a week. He would tell me to go by there and look at it, trying to get me to get excited with him. But I don’t have the extra time during the week, and if I did have time to get over there it would take about an hour or so to drive it, and with a toddler who is not napping that can be a pretty much terrible experience. I have errands to run on my days off, and it is already hard enough to shop with a toddler, adding an hour drive to that day sounds like a real treat. I also felt like I was missing out on part of the process.

So I let all that go, and now make him send me all the photos he takes immediately so I can feel like I am there and I can watch it grow with him. Problem solved.

Oh, and he got a really really sweet deal on fridge! So that is taken care of.

Let’s see what happens the rest of this month! We have a planned Thanksgiving trip that we always look forward to. More to come…

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Call me a selfish mom…

We all know having kids is tough; this is not breaking news. We also know that having a toddler is like a having a miniature dictator who lives off cheerios and boob milk. At least in my experience.

I am sure a large quantity of moms also know how intense raising small kids can be when you have anxiety. This is also not breaking news.

I never anticipated how much having Charlotte would trigger my anxiety. Or maybe it amplifies it and exposes me to my triggers on a more regular basis. Whatever. It isn’t a picnic most days of the week.

I am not a fan of hanging out with strangers making small talk in mommy groups. I don’t enjoy small talk as it is but talking to strangers in general causes me anxiety. I take Charlotte places often, so there are a fair amount of times that I am thrust into situations that trigger that social anxiety I am prone to experience.

So I have to do things to care for myself, and protect myself and my family from the ugly anxiety fueled crazy bitch that can manifest herself from time to time. Lessen the frequency.

I do things like work out. Yoga and running, to be specific. I love a good long run that ends in a sweaty shirt and messed up hair. It is like my trophy. A pat on the back, or a ‘that a girl’. And yoga helps me not only handle the pain from my herniated disc, it also allows me to stop and breathe.

I take baths. I love them. The hotter, the more bubbles, the better. Set that music on a relaxing station and leave me the fuck alone for a couple of hours. I also use this as my Pinterest time. A good long soak is also therapy for my back.

I also do things like get massages. I can use the back pain reason here too. Hard, deep massages help relieve the pain caused by the disc and caused by toting my 22 lb baby around as well as other babies of various size around all day. It gets difficult, let alone with back issues before hand. So massages help me feel better. I love a great massage. I cannot stress this enough. My massage therapist went to town on my ass last time and I drooled it felt so fucking good.

The list doesn’t stop there people. I get waxed. I get manicures and pedicures too. I don’t always get to do all these things on what you would describe as a regular basis, but I get them done enough that it helps maintain my sanity and makes me feel pretty.

I am a person who is low maintainance on the day-to-day but high maintainance in general. I have come to grips with this. My husband has come to grips with this. I won’t put us debt to get these things done. I won’t charge multiple massages in the sake of my ‘maintaining my mental and physical health’. I will however work for it and sure the hell enjoy it when the opportunity strikes.

Perhaps it shows that I am little defensive about this. I am sure it is from the guilt I used to carry every time I went out and did something for myself. I felt guilty spending money on myself. I would feel so selfish leaving the house and my leaving my husband in charge to figure things out. Even though he is more than capable, and her FATHER, I would feel like I was putting him out. I would hide behind the notion that I deserved it, but inside I was battling my own thoughts. I would certainly not be relaxing at all when I supposed to be. Wasting my time and my money.

Why did I view these things as “selfish”? I didn’t think of them before as such before I get married and had a baby. Spending time doing things like running and yoga and spending money doing things like getting pedicures and massages, all things I did before charlotte arrived, just left me feeling guilty now. I quit doing stuff for a while to save money and lost my interest in working out. The stress was getting to be too much. The anxiety was weighing me down. I thought I was handling it all pretty well, but the balancing act with little to no outlet for the stress and no privacy in the new apartment was starting to reflect in weight loss, over agitation and trouble sleeping. Which then started teetering on depression.

I saw my doctor, had a good chat and got some new tools to work with. Starting a new medicine helped me regain focus.

I started to realize that if mommy wasn’t happy, nobody was happy. I know this old saying is just that, old. But here in my house, in my world, this statement holds water. I am sort of the glue that holds that shit together. I know this, Chris knows it, our toddler knows it. This is not arrogance, this is a mom of a young toddler, in her thirties talking. I keep it together around here. So investing in myself and taking some time to do things that make me happy is a good thing.

I am setting a good example for my daughter. I am teaching her that doing the things that keep you afloat in life doesn’t make you a bad person, or selfish. At least not in my book. It’s call preventative health, it’s called self-preservation, it’s called therapy, it’s called me-time, a hobby… label it what you want, it’s a vital part of life.

Life creates stress, no way around it. You have to manage that in a healthy way. The running, yoga, nail and hair maintenance and massages from Sarah keep this anxiety-filled, back-pain having mom’s head above water. And my nails looks good, too.

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