Me: you’re leaving? But wait …
Me: I love you so much
Nic: May Neptune watch over your soul
Nic: May Neptune watch over your soul
Me: (internally) Wtf?
Me: (out loud) ok (followed by massive sobs and ugly crying noises)
Nic: bye for now
It all happened too quickly. Can I get a do over? Please.
(My status on Friday, the 6th of January.)
I knew it was going to hurt. I had no clue how much.
Considering the state of me the day before, work told me to please take the day if needed. I knew as I arrived home Thursday that it would be needed.
To pull closer to your home, only to see your child’s car surrounded by cases and ‘I’m going away’ items well, let’s just say I was sobbing by the time I had put the car into neutral and pulled my emergency brake.
This was it.
The last night.
I walked, wet cheeked, into a home I had shared with him since High School.
Suitcases and vacuum sealed bags lay about the living room and kitchen. His bedroom littered with debris from a lifetime together.
This was really happening.
I stood, purse in hand – unable to stop the tears.
The following morning was a blur.
After watching him drive off – I entered the house (no longer feeling like a home) and broke.
Into a thousand pieces.
I cried myself to sleep.
I cried some more.
I finally found the strength to enter ‘his room’.
And wished I hadn’t.
I grabbed a pillow abandoned on his unmade bed. Inhaled deeply and returned to bed with it. I clutched it so tightly.
And slept again.
In between the crying and the sleeping was the worrying – he was after all, embarking on a 27 hour trip across country.
Physically navigating terrain he’d never navigated before.
Just as I was emotionally.
It’s been 5 days since he left.
My dog, Butters has been out of sorts.
I’ve been trying to be ‘chipper’ at work. Albeit, quite unsuccessfully on Monday. I had made it through the entire day – catching up, slammed.
I was crunching year-end numbers just as I was informed the copy machine was acting up.
“I can only focus on one thing … I’ll call the copy people in a minute.”
A boss responded, “No, finish what you’re doing, don’t worry.”
And, out of my mouth?
“But if I don’t call now, Nic won’t come!!”
Our copy guy’s name is Christian.
Freudian slip led to tears.
They continued to fall as I stayed a little late and got everything done while everyone trod about me on eggshells.
Another jarring moment was yesterday. Nic had told me he would send photographs of where he was (having, obviously, safely arrived at his destination.)
I followed up and his response was:
“I haven’t been home yet. Lol I’ve. Been out all day”
Wasn’t ready for that sentence.
Not ‘our’ home.
And I’m going to have to get used to that.
I’m told repeatedly by people with the best intentions that his flight from the nest is a testament to my successful raising of him.
But I’m still trying to accept that. And, it’s hard. And it hurts.
However, I’m also very proud of him for taking such a ginormous step and embarking on a new chapter of his life.
For following his heart (literally, he left to be with his girlfriend of over three years.)
For bravely starting from scratch in a place he’s only visited a couple of times, and accepting the challenge to ‘adult’.
I’ll always be here for him.
I’ll always miss him.
And perhaps most importantly, always love him enough to let go.
First 15 minutes in here were jarring.
I’m literally in the shirt I slept in, hair thrown into a braid. This after my intended replied to my “I’m tired …” with “Yeah, you look tired.”
Don’t you love that?
Even worse, is when someone gives you an unsolicited “You look tired.” Which, basically translates to “You look like crap today.” In Amandapedia.
Anyway, I KNEW if I didn’t just run inside the house (ok, it was more of a shuffle) – throw shorts on and tame my mane and grab the laundry, it was NOT going to get done.
So I’m still half asleep as I enter and am greeted by what sounded like a Chuckie Cheese.
Radio blaring, children playing a land version of “Marco!” “Polo!” The assault on my tired little ears was … as I said, jarring.
Here’s one of the little ones – (I blurred her cute little face because I don’t think pictures of kids should be randomly thrown up on a stranger’s site.)
Little Red Riding tu-tu.
And another tyke in the background.
And a rare sighting of my laundry lady in the back.
Then it suddenly and blessedly got very, very quiet.
So, why am I so tired?
Well, certainly wasn’t because I scrubbed the entire house as planned yesterday.
I did something I haven’t done in YEARS. Friday my honey and I stayed up until 5 flipping a.m. By choice. We had a lot of fun, but I have got to tell you, my body does not recuperate the way it used to.
I’m old now!
Well, too old for that shite anyway.
And I knew it would happen, I knew I’d only sleep for a few hours and then answer the maternal call of my tired body. There were animals to be fed, walked – there was food to be made. And yeah, ok, then I binge watched the Real Housewives of New York. (Shame is washing over me just typing that.)
Then … CRASH! I ended up sleeping away the rest of the day.
(Not before burning the roof of my mouth on a pizza that my refreshed, newly awoken honey prepared for us.)
So here I am, clothes in dryer now. Polystyrene coffee to my right and … new children in front of me.
But, to their credit,they’re being very well-behaved.
Hozier is belting out ‘Take me to Church’ in the background. And in 10 minutes, I’ll be folding and then returning to my nest.
I’ll do something constructive around the house when I get back to assuage any guilt of planning another nap later.
It IS the weekend after all.
Come on down folks!
You can carry concealed weapons with no license AND it’s a Minimal Parenting State!
My frustration level today was at a full Spinal Tap 11.
I had my annual property inspection this morning.
All went well. Considering I’m a goody two shoes and have been cleaning like an OCD queen for a year, there wasn’t really any doubt about that.
Feels intrusive though – taking photos of every room – my bedroom, all my precious things. (almost expected them to bring in a table with stirrups for a full examination) The bathrooms – our towels and toiletries. Even Butters!!!
Don’t get me wrong, the people who manage the property I live in are really nice. I also understand why the homeowner is well within his or her right to know what condition their investment is in.
I’m just saying the inspection itself feels like a cell check. A reminder that where you are is not yours – and someone else has a set of keys and a set of rules.
Speaking of rules.
This was also my time to mention anything that needed fixing etc.
Well, other than some minor items, an obvious thing that needs fixing is the behavior of ‘the neighbors’.
Both homes are owned by the same person and managed by the same company.
I brought up recent events (the dog’s appearance, the witnessed dog abuse, the traffic/drug-likelihood continuance, yelling at the children)
I bring it up because I can’t escape it!
I’m no Mrs. Kravitz!! I’m not a ‘Curtain Twitcher’ (as my Nannie would say)
Every room I spend a lot of time in (kitchen, living room, bedroom) have windows directly facing ‘them’.
Walls are thin – I hear every car, every verbal barb from my couch – I assure you, I am not pressed against the wall with my ear to a cup.
I cannot enjoy the sanctuary that ‘home’ should be with the uncomfortable dysfunction constantly on display.
I told the inspector that I was done.
It doesn’t seem fair that I follow the rules, and can’t enjoy my home to the fullest.
I received an email at work from the landlord.
She was going to call CPS and if they did not renew the tenancy, would I consider staying?
Yeah – of course. (I actually wasn’t intending to leave.)
The yard is a great size for Butters – I don’t feel like her barking interferes with anyone (no direct neighbors that we’re butted up against) and I’ve been in the home for 4 years and am settled. The inspector today kept saying how cozy I’d made the place. And it’s true.
It is cozy.
If you can shut out the world and just be in the moment – it’s a hell of a homey, cozy place to be.
I received another email from the landlord.
Apparently, the State I live in is a ‘minimal parenting’ State.
What is this, and why didn’t I know about this when Nic was under 18?
You mean I didn’t have to supply love, entertainment, attention to his education etc??? What the hell?
I joke of course.
The landlady had an example for me, and I quote:
“Do you know that if someone is dealing drugs out of their home and they are not doing it in front of the children and the drugs are locked up so the kids cannot get to them that it is not a danger and therefore they cannot do anything!!”
There was another example:
“I was dumbfounded when I asked her what would constitute getting them involved and the responses made me so mad! She told me that if someone had dog feces all over there floor, with children in the house, that if the children were crawling through it or at an age to still not understand not to put it in their mouth that would be an issue.
If the same situation occurred and the child was 6 or 7 and knew not to put it in their mouth that would not be an issue. I don’t understand how that cannot be health and safety????!!!!!”
We went back and forth and exchanged exasperation and ideas. I finally mentioned that the dog’s waste is not picked up and is located amongst the childrens backyard toys.
Two are under 6.
Grasping at straws I know!
That failing, they could at least call ‘the neighbors’ out on the unofficial dog and we can get that innocent party out of the mix.
In order to keep Butters, I MUST have renters insurance and had to put a pet deposit down. They should have to do the same!
And I don’t say that in a ‘wah wah’ tantrum way … I say it because it is NOT fair that there are people who follow rules and people who don’t and the ones who don’t seem to get away with it.
I think (especially before Christmas) that might be something they won’t want to do and they’ll opt to relinquish the dog.
It should have no problem finding a home – it’s a sweetheart.
What keeps returning to my thoughts though is how on earth is anyone supposed to prevent a tragedy?
The minute a child is killed or found in a disgusting environment, strangers comment ‘why didn’t anyone DO anything about this?’ And they tut and sneer and judge. (I know I have.)
Well people, guess what? I bet someone TRIED to do something and there were no avenues for them to take.
I’ve called the Sheriff.
I’ve advised the landlord.
CPS has been spoken to.
And as I type, I’m still across from that family – and unless someone is seen walking out of their house holding a bag of drugs or they beat their children in the middle of the street – or they … gawd, what?
Unless they WHAT??
What IS it going to take to finally do them in?
I don’t know.
But I only want the best for those three children and for that pup.
And yeah – call me crazy – but I still only want the best for the flipping parents too. Because they were once children. Whatever makes them capable of being the way they are and lashing out the way they do – needs fixing.
I only want the best for EVERYONE!
Nic asked me to wake him up this morning, so before I left for work I did just that and was rewarded with a tired hug.
For a moment – a fleeting moment – as I looked at his sleepy face and disheveled hair, I saw my boy.
It’s so odd.
Gone are the Christmas Eves peppered with ‘Can I open just one??’
Gone are the cookies and milk for Santa.
No more waiting for him to be asleep before tip toeing to his stocking.
No more biting carrots for reindeer and leaving remnants on the porch.
No more sprinkling glitter by a fireplace – leaving footprints in the carpet.
I miss that.
I miss wrapping Lego and Pokemon.
I miss small pajamas.
I miss the smell of his freshly washed hair – of “1,2, threeeee!” As I picked him up, wrapped in an impossibly big towel, out of the tub.
I miss story time and his heavy lids – minty yawns and ‘See you in the morning!’
Today I miss my boy.
But am oh so grateful for the young man who is my son this Christmas Eve.