Didn’t We Fly

didn’t we fly
that chill autumn day
escaped from apple picking
to smoke secret cigarettes in the woods
on a rough dirt road to nowhere

when a half dozen boys
came on rumbling bikes
asked if we wanted
to go for a ride

we should have known better
and run for our lives
but we grinned at each other
and got on behind

and didn’t we fly

didn’t we fly
with the wind in our hair
and the sky whirling by
trailing shrieking laughter

my cheek pressed against
his warm farm boy back
arms holding tight
like I was in love
maybe just for that moment I was

didn’t we fly

didn’t we fly
that chill autumn day
now I’m older and wiser
and you’ve gone away
but I will always remember you
and that perfectly dangerous
beautiful day

didn’t we fly?

 

 

For Dawn Davis

Capture

(A little end of summer poem.)

On the last day of vacation,
sunburned and windswept,
I rushed down to the beach
with an empty bottle
to capture a piece of sea.

I crammed sand and tiny shells
through the opening,
filled the empty space with seawater,
hoping as we drove away
when I missed this place
I could open it,
return to that
delirious infinity,
the rush of light
sound and movement
more wonderful
than anything I’d ever seen.

Of course it was a lost cause:
Grand things diminish
in confined spaces,
both children and the sea.

End of Summer

Even though we are still in limbo regarding my stepdad, it’s been a wonderful summer. It’s the first since I had kids that I got to be home with them, and we’ve been too busy enjoying ourselves for me to write much. Even though we’re moderately broke, we’ve found plenty of fun things to do…trips to the science museum, skipping around between all the excellent library branches, visiting parks when it’s not too hot, swimming, art exhibits, museums, caverns, visits to and from family, playdates…

My daughter starts school next week and both my son and I will be seriously bummed without her around every day.  I let her have an end-of-summer sleepover with three friends last weekend; her first one ever. I nearly lost my sanity, but she and her friends had a good time. 😉 

I finally went to the doctor and dentist on my new insurance, and I’m working on fixing all the minor health problems I’ve been having: migraines, low iron, vertigo…the doctor tried to hook me up with a therapist, but at this point finding a babysitter to cover appointments sounds more stressful than therapy sounds helpful. A therapist isn’t going to be able to do anything about the uncertainty of the stepdad situation anyway. If he goes to trial I’m going to go to support Mom.

For now, I have a first birthday party to attend for my great-niece soon, and a visit to Mom’s to plan in September. I can’t wait until the weather cools down so I can take Rory on hikes, too. There’s still a lot to explore in our new city.

 

Happy Birthday to Me

I  turn 42 today and it’s the best birthday I’ve had in years.

I quit my job last Friday. 

I was about to get fired anyway. I talked to HR one last time and that conversation confirmed it. I was sticking it out for COBRA, so I could keep my insurance a while, but after some research I discovered the cost was astronomical and we can just as well shell out for a marketplace plan.

The other deciding factor was that my boss was gone all week and I kept fantasizing about never having to see her again.

Then I got an invitation to the next check in meeting with her and HR, and it was on my birthday. Did I really want to get fired on my birthday? Nope.

I worked my usual hours Friday and emailed my resignation before I left. I briefly considered a snarky, burn-it-down type of middle finger goodbye, but in the end I kept it brief. No notice. Effective immediately.

It felt fantastic. Unprofessional, furtive, irresponsible, and absolutely fantastic. 

Today I got an email from HR saying they accepted my resignation in lieu of termination, so I am eligible to work there again if I ever decide to apply to a different position (far, far away from the last one). I didn’t even ask for that, but I am grateful HR went that route. It was a nice reward for not sending the bridge-burning letter.

I feel like my new life can finally begin. I think I’ve hated my job since I went into management eight years ago.

I’m spending my birthday and Easter taking the kids to visit my mom, then the rest of my WV family. Dan is coming later because he has an interview.

Once our trip is over, I’m turning the basement into a workshop. I’m going to start a side gig selling my hippie crafts online and at festivals. I may pick up part time or freelance work if necessary.

I’m looking forward to having more time with the kids. I already bought lake supplies for the summer and new deck chairs for the yard. The library and zoo are 10 and 15 minutes away.

Money will be tight, but I’m automatically going to save on therapy bills. I won’t need nearly as many lunches out and stress-lattes either.

I’ve already lowered my dosage too so hopefully the annoying forgetfulness and brain fog won’t be as bad.

Life is too short to work a shitty job where you’re treated like shit. And I’m not trying to sound flippant, like anyone can stroll off from their livelihood. It’s hard as fuck to leave stability for uncertainty. Hey, I was pushed.

But happiness, contentment, and emotional well-being: those things really matter. If you don’t have them, it’s harder to enjoy what you are fortunate enough to have. Or it’s harder to leave the people who support you and keep you going, to spend 40+ hours a week feeling like crap.

I wish my former boss no ill will. I hope she finds balance, and someone to replace me who lives up to her expectations – office robots probably aren’t too far off, you know. (This wouldn’t be me without a little snark, right?)

I’m overjoyed to finally be able to GTFO, and excited to figure out what comes next.

 

 

 

Top Five Wallowing Songs

I’ve been going through some serious emotional shit lately. This time it isn’t job related and I can’t really talk about it to most people. I am talking about it to my best support people and those involved. We’re going to get through it together, but it will take some time.

One of the things I’ve learned about having OCD is, in addition to obsessing over the negative stuff, you feel everything very strongly. When I have something like this hit me, even with all the mindfulness and therapy in the world, it’s hard to rise above it. I’ll think I’m fine for a while, then I stumble across a triggering thought and I’m upset all over again. There’s no way through but through.

I use music and poetry to help. I let myself wallow in sadness for a while and just wrap it around me like a big fuzzy blanket. These are some of my favorite wallowing songs, in no particular order. Continue reading “Top Five Wallowing Songs”

2019!

I had a wonderful two weeks at home for the holidays. My husband got through his surgery, and although his recovery was slow at first, he is up and around more every day.

During my time off I took care of both kids, helped Dan when he needed me, kept the house going, made lots of progress on the unpacking front, and dyed most of our holiday gifts. It was tiring but rewarding. Getting to spend all that time with the kids was awesome.

We had some visitors too. My dad and stepmom came for the surgery, and Dan’s twin brother came shortly afterward. Before the surgery his older brother came to visit with my sister-in-law and nephew. We went to an awesome drive-through light show.

We love our new house. We’ve started to get most things where they need to be and figure out how to use different spaces. We were able to get the home warranty to cover repairs on a few things that were broken, so all that’s left is to get a new roof, and that was paid for as part of the deal. Being closer to family is great, too. We are insanely grateful for all of it.

Now we just have to work together to extract me from my job and figure out some combination of new ones that will pay the bills. Even though the payment is slightly lower than rent, my job is still at risk and we’re at the “hatch an escape plan” point. Dan is studying for a certification test he needs to take, and I’m applying for random jobs that sound fun and less stressful.

Right before I left for the holidays, I put together the on-boarding plan I should have had the first week or two I worked here and sent it to my boss as my training request list. But I only have so much energy, and while I’m trying to make it work for the time being, I also need to spend some of that energy job-hunting and supporting Dan in his search.

I’d rather leave on my own terms and getting fired certainly would suck. But it’s less scary than it used to be. We have some savings left, and Dan has already been working with a career coach so we might just sign me up for him too (family discount? HA).

It is hard to come in every day, and not to let myself go straight to “fuck it all free-fall.” But having a possible end-date helps with that. And I get to go home to the most awesome family in the world, plus I have supportive, caring friends and family who are there to listen to me gripe when I need them and commiserate with their own unfortunate nutso work stories.

Here’s hoping 2019 is way less stressful than that Old Year.