How to be obnoxious, when you aren’t even trying.

I was talking with a friend today, about my early blog postings. Stuff that’s floating around on a blog somewhere that I’ve lost track of. My posts from a few years ago I cringe at. I was so sure after Chris and I split that I had everything figured out. I learned what I need to learn. Blah blah blah. I was so enlightened. Had my shit so together. If I’ve learned anything. It’s that you never quit learning so don’t get too high and mighty about lifes lessons.

Tomorrow marks the last day of my last long term viable relationship. Not that I haven’t fallen in love. Learned wonderful things from wonderful people since… but that was the last time I thought my life path was directed toward a certain trajectory with some length to it. We were together for a bit over 5 years. I did learn so much from Chris. I learned a lot of my faults. I learned about my weak points. I learned about my strengths. I learned I was capable of a lot more than anyone ever asked of me. I learned to love from a distance. I learned about trust . . and what breaks it. I learned how handy I could be. I learned how to fix things and build things and run a chain saw. I learned how to be softer. I learned how to say what I mean, and mean what I say and how to expect that from someone else. Sorta. I learned what it meant to love someone elses children. I learned to let him love mine. I never learned how to let him parent mine . . and I don’t apologize for that. I learned that I’m awfully independent and that how that can shut people out. I learned how to let my boys be boys. He tried to show me a better way to mom my daughter, but it took me awhile to get it. And I learned that I needed to be alone.

The best thing Chris ever did for me was let me go. Sometimes people need to hurt you in that way. I think often about all of the life experiences I’ve had in the last 5 years that I wouldn’t have had if we were still living the life we did. I would not have the friends I have. I would probably not have the job I do. I would have had someone to lean on through some really hard times, but I learned how to get through those times crawling into bed alone night after night after night. I wouldn’t have learned how to lay claim to my personal time. To make time for me, and for my kids. I wouldn’t have taken so many trips, explored so many places. I wouldn’t be the person I am today. And I really like that person.

11 months after we split I recall we had a four hour conversation before the holidays and he said “I made a huge mistake”. And I recall that moment so clearly. I was standing in the kitchen, in front of the microwave with tears streaming down my face and I said “Babe. No you didn’t. i know the kids hurt. I know we still hurt. But we are both so much happier.” He knew that to be true.

Two years ago, on the eve of Caseys death anniversary (and come to pass, the eve of my mothers death), he told me he didn’t want to hear from me anymore. Our cordial friendship that we had maintained was no longer conducive to the life he was trying to lead. It hurt. I was pretty angry. Not only for the fact that he had effectively abandoned my children but that he took that five years and tossed it out as inconsequential to his current life. But there is nothing else you can do when someone needs that break. I sent an email that was probably part kind and probably less so. And let it go. There is no point in holding on to someone who feels  they need to be released of your acquaintance. I’m thankful for the friends I still hold dear, who I loved once. But I also am ok with the ones who have disappeared into the ether. Make space.

We made some  fantastic memories. With our kids. On our no kid weekends. Our road trips and adventures. Pushing each other to be the best people we could be, for as long as it lasted. I will forever and always hope that he is happy and healthy and smiling. I’m thankful for him loving me. For thinking I was a fucking rock star  and teaching me to smile and nursing me back to emotional health when I was a far more broken human being.

I’m thankful for the opportunity to learn more lessons.  Live more life. Love new people.

I’ll trade that any day for a 25th anniversary plate.

2016. Thank you.

I wanted to wait until 2016 was officially behind me before I said anything, no need to tempt fate.  2016. You were a good year.

If you’ve been following along at all, my years start out like this “last year was hard, but I’ve learned a lot, I feel better prepared for what life throws at me” and then life goes AHAHAHAHAHAHAHA, I’LL SHOW YOU”.

January. Man. 5 days into January in 2012. Chris decided we were through. And we were, it was such a good call. But ending a 5 year relationship and watching how much that hurt our kids was devastating. He was my best friend. That shit was hard.

18 Days into 2013 we lost Casey. A few weeks into 2014 and we found out mom had pancreatic cancer and the odds were not great. 18 days into 2015 we lost mom, (on Casey’s death date no less), 2015 continued to kick at me as well. I also fell down a really dark hole of depression that lasted most of 2015. I’ve written about most of this before.

So 2016. 2016 started with a fantastic New Years seeing Skrillix and Purity ring with some of the baddest bitches I know. We partied it up for Christine’s birthday, had good luck foods at JoBeths. It was an epic and stellar weekend. A month later I left for Ireland with my good friend Carrie and we spent a week exploring and traveling and drinking WAY too much beer with the locals (thanks Joel!). Weeks later I interviewed for a job at a company I had been wanting to work for, for several years. A week after that I put together a wedding for my Son and his bride with literally, a week’s notice. Immediately after that I got hired for the job at Big. All this before my birthday!

2016 continued to roll out nicely. Some trips to chicago. Taylors graduation from college after 5 hard years. Taylor landed HER dream job.

Chase and Jo moved to California. And I was fortunate enough to have a job that let me take time off to drive my son across the country on a trip I will never forget. Both for the time I had with him and for the fact that somehow I thought we could make a 36 hour trip in 36 hours with 2 cats, a snake and a Kia Rio in the mountains. (lessons) My son is living in the state he always wanted to live in. He’s with a beautiful, driven woman who loves him deeply. I am proud of those two.

Almost to the end of the year, on their 7 year anniversary Taylor and Eddie got engaged. 5 years of that was spent doing the long distance relationship thing while they both went to school. I am so proud of them for making it to here. Eddie has been a part of our family for so many years, but in 2018 they will make it official. ❤

I learned how to be alone as fuck in 2016. But happy alone. Not seeking. Not really dating. Just being really happy with great friends and great kids and my gym membership and my new job. It felt really good. And the sky didn’t fall. And no one died. (except every single one of the icons of my youth and you know, PRINCE  . . . .)

I continue to meet cool and interesting people who wander through my life. Some stick around, some wander off. It was a good year.