Makin’ Me Crazy…

Okay, so, I know how I’ve said I love my in-laws and I do.  I really, really do.  They’ve been sweet, kind, and immensely supportive of the fiancé and I despite the… strange way our relationship began.  Having your son come home and say, “oh, by the way, that girl I’ve been dating in Pennsylvania, you know–the one you guys barely know–well, she’s going to stay here awhile, okay?  Okay”  isn’t an easy pill to swallow.  I’ve been here nearly a year, except the month or two I spent at home during my whole ‘health crisis’.  Unfortunately, the glamour has faded and I want to move out now.  The fiancé hasn’t even gotten called by the police yet to say when he starts and I’m already looking at apartments, trying to budget out things, and also trying to figure out when we can move and what we can afford.

It’s not that I don’t like my in-laws, I do.  It’s just my mother-in-law is very strange.  She is a woman with no hobbies and a very extermist way of thinking.  Outside of the house she’s peppy, upbeat, and completely lovable.  I thought my fiancé was kidding when he said people only loved her because they didn’t live with her… he was right.  She’s a very nice lady and I do care for her, but she drives me nuts.  She treats us like a child when she acts more childish than any adult I’ve ever met.  Since she works for the American Cancer Society and deals with cancer patients, she is pretty hardnosed in that no one else’s problems can match that of someone dying.  That any dysfunction or issue you may have pales in comparison to someone dying.  Which, yes, dying sucks, it does… but everyone is entitled to their own suffering.

Worst of all, she doesn’t understand my fiancé at all, depsite him being her son and a product of her womb.  She constantly berates him for being childish and immature, when he’s not.  He has his moments, but he’s extremely level-headed.  He doesn’t spend foolishly (even though she claims he does), he doesn’t obsess over video games (even though she claims he does), and he really does take good care with his finances and everything he does.  If anything, I’m the game-obsessed one.  I have my own level of maturity, though, thanks.

I just think we’d all get along a lot better if we weren’t here.  I could go on for paragraphs about how my mother-in-law drives me up the wall.  We’re two completely different people and her constant dismissal of my family issues annoys me.  She actually told me that I should feel guilty for treating my mother badly–that I should be trying to support and help her.  Uh, hello?  My mother has emotionally, verbally, and sometimes physically abused me for years and years.  I’ve tried–been there, done that–she doesn’t want help.  I’m done.  Don’t dare lecture me and don’t dare make me feel like I am the one in the wrong.  I’m not.  It took me years to realize that and no one will tell me differently, not ever again.  My mother is an alcoholic of the worst kind and she has mental issues.  Couple those together and you have a violent mix of pure crazy.  Don’t talk about what you know nothing about, thanks.

I know my fiancé and I could do more, but really, I just feel unmotivated and disconnected.  My family issues and my mother-in-law driving me nuts (even though I still like her, I just need a BREAK from her) have beaten down my motivation.  Now I just want out.  I want to be free, I want to do my own thing, I want to cook, I want to have my own space, I want to not have to worry about something touching my freakin’ laundry or NOT doing any damn dishes.  I want to clean and not have it ruined five seconds later.  I’m sick of living with parents.  I want out.  Please!

In the meantime, I really do need to clean, but again, unmotivated.  Our room looks like a bomb went off.  I need to clear out the fiancé’s drawers and put everything away.  I also need to sort through my own crazy mess.  Don’t worry, I have pictures.  It’s bad. (more…)

Life in a Snow Globe

Unfortunately, I don’t have the fancy Canon Rebel EOS D-SLR.  All I have to document the brilliant snowfall we’re not experiencing here in the Ohio Tri-State area is this cheap little Olympus my father-in-law gave us.  Pictures are pictures, I figure.  Plus, I love snow.  It makes me feel good no matter what.  I love to just go outside, flop down on the ground, and stare up at it.  I don’t feel cold, I don’t feel anything, I just feel… at peace.  Somehow.  I’ve done this since I was little.  It’s my way of connecting with nature, I guess.  I love the snow.  I love it.

(more…)

Just A Little Broken

Had quite the… eventful weekend.  Arrived home just before 10 pm Saturday after work, everything seemed fine.  I hadn’t been feeling too hot and so I was eager to just sit down and relax.  I’m lying down in the bedroom when my fiancé comes back and says, rather gravely, “you need to call your dad.”

Of course, my reaction is immediately incredulous.  I need to call my dad?  Where the hell did that come from?  We both just saw the in-laws and no one said anything to me.  Well, apparently they said something to him.  That something amounted to ‘my grandma called and said my dad left’. Beg pardon?  Why didn’t anyone tell me this?  So I hunt down the phone, try calling his cell, it’s off.  So, I call my grandparents… because when you say grandma, I assume my maternal grandmother.  No, they didn’t mean her, they meant my other grandma, my father’s mother.  Okay, oops.  So I apologize for calling my grandparents so late, ask for the number, and try calling it.

In the midst of all of this, my mother-in-law comes to the doorway.  I ask her what was said and she replies with, “your grandma said your dad turned up at 3am with a cut on his face–your mum hit him with a beer bottle.”

Okay, I don’t like to be a sap.  I don’t like people seeing me cry, period.  However, there are key things you must understand.  My entire life has been spent breaking up fights… between my parents and my maternal grandparents.  Thankfully, my maternal grandparents just bicker and so it’s kind of cute and funny.  My parents, however, have always fought and it usually escalates.  There is no abuse, except with my mother throttling my dad with things and him trying to restrain her, but usually with me there, I can dissolve the situation.  I wasn’t there.  So immediately, my brain says it is my fault and tears start forming in my eyes at the thought of my dad actually being physically hurt and God only knows what had caused such a fight of epic proportions besides my mother being a raging alcoholic.

I can’t get anyone at myother grandma’s.  So I dissolve into tears, right there.  That’s right, a big, weepy mess… and my fiancé is silent and he just sort of tries to comfort me, but I’m not a comfort person.  I want to be left alone, to wallow in my misery.  My mother-in-law flees, completely oblivious to the severity of the situation.  Eventually, my father-in-law passes by the door and sees me crying my eyes out.  Yeah, great.  So everyone has seen me cry, that’s just fabulous.

So I call my grandparents again and demand to know what’s going on.  Immediately, my grandpa flips his shit over my other grandma calling me.  He says that my dad is fine and he’s spoken to him.  That my other grandma had no business calling.  I feel relieved, finally, but still worried.  I left a voicemail on dad’s cell phone.  I get a reply the next day, as I’m on my way to work.  He’s fine, he’s moved in with his mother, and he’s pissed because my other grandma called and worried me.  So I feel a little relieved, though even more worried, because he said he might have to get rid of the phones.

Fast forward a bit to yesterday.  He gave me his work email address (since he doesn’t have a computer), so I could email him.  I did and he replied that my other grandma had too much Windsor and Animal Planet.  She was worried about the animals and thought that maybe I could talk some sense into my mother.  Yeah right.  What nearly broke my heart was that he has truly moved in with my other grandma and he said, word-for-word…

‘ I love you guys, I’m not abandoning you. I just need some time to reprogram my head.’

I want to feel so many things right now; I want to scream, cry, rage… but I know I can’t.  Everyone will think I’m crazy, I’ll bring my fiancé down with me.  So I’ll just call my dad and hope I can hear his voice and pretend that I’m a freshly assembled puzzle instead of one that’s just been stomped to misshapen, ill fitting pieces.

Black Means ‘No’

I’m always amused when I get insight to the inner-workings of the male mind.  I mean, I’ve mostly found myself in the company of males for the better part of my life, so I understand certain things.  But there’s that ‘male code’ that keeps them from giving away their male secrets, for fear that they will indenture their fellow males.  Thankfully, once you’re in a very serious relationship bordering on marriage, you become privy to these little insights.  I got quite a startling one last night, on the cusp of my NyQuil induced stupor.

I’ve always known that men have a system with underwear.  Usually, when a girl is wearing black underwear–thong, bikini, etc–it means someone is getting lucky.  Or, well, that’s what guys equate it to.  Well, the fiancé let me know that I am the exact opposite.  I’m not quite sure how that happened.  He put it quite simply as, “black means no.”  I was quite baffled.  I have no real system for picking what underwear I wear on any particular day aside from comfort and modesty; if I’m wearing a skirt, I go for boy shorts or tangas, otherwise, the good old thong standby.  In reality, I’m not secretly thinking, “I’ll wear black just to get his hopes up and then dash them with my evil, feminine ways.  Mwahahaha!”  Seriously, I’m not.  I just grab something and put it on!

Of course, I demanded to know why he thought black meant ‘no.’  What I was wearing was quite stringy, but with coverage where it counted, plain cotton, and very black.  He said they had been “around awhile” and he knew them well enough to know that when I wore them, he was out of luck.  I explained to him my non-intricate system for choosing the panty of the day and he simply shrugged and said that it was probably subconscious.  Great.  Now my issues have issues and they’re seeping out to my clothing choices.  WTF?  Of course, then I got him to admit that even when he knows the underwear means ‘no’ that he still tries.  His response caused me much laughter, at 1am, burying my head into the pillow so as to not wake the in-laws:

“Well, you can’t blame a guy for trying.”

My fiancé, ever the romantic.

Two Sides to Every Story

There’s nothing quite like hearing the monotone, electronic voice of, ‘We’re sorry, but the number you’re trying to reach has been disconnected’ to send a cold, prickly fear through you when you try to phone your house, the number you’ve had for what seems like your entire life.  Especially when you know what’s been going on and when you fear the absolute worst.  It’s also incredibly jarring when you’ve just finished talking to your grandparents who were cheerful and otherwise placated.  Surely they would react were something amiss?  No, they wouldn’t.  They live in the land of denial.

So, I called my dad’s cell phone (as the ‘kindly’ electronic voice advised) and found out that he had disconnected the land line due to my mother running up the cell bill.  She was using 600 minutes, whereas dad and I were using, at the most, around 50.  Needless to say, my DSL is gone.  That’s fine, my grandparents have DSL, too.  I can rationalize that.  We spoke for awhile and I could tell that the end was near.  Dad calls it his ‘exodus’.  That’s a weighty word, one that is used to title an entire ‘book’ of the Bible.  Escaping a hostile environment, indeed.  Nevertheless, there are two sides to every story and while my mother is quite the insane drunk, she wasn’t always that way.  Way back, in a time I can hardly recall, she was my mother–caring, impulsive, and sometimes a little too involved, but she loved me.  I try not to take sides with my parents, even though its been dad and I against her for the better part of a decade now.  How else were we to survive the violent nature of her alcoholic rage?

After speaking with my dad and telling him about Key West, he said he’d come.  I was relieved.  I wanted to talk to him more, to hear his voice… there’s comfort there.  Comfort from when I was small and needed the voice of a parent.  There’s a part of me, deep down inside, that needs that comfort now and again.  We hung up and a few minutes later, my mum’s cell phone comes up on the caller ID.  I answer, hesitant.  She has a job again, but dad said she’s been drinking.

Instead of the slurred, drunken voice I’ve become accustomed to, I heard the soft lilt of a mother on the other line.  Dad told me she had managed to be sober a whole week before falling off the wagon.  I was stunned, to be honest.  I haven’t heard this voice in about two years.  The last time I heard it, it was a deception, a cruel, horrible trick.  General concern followed, upon hearing my own, hoarse verbiage.  I have a cold, I’m okay, no, I don’t need to see a doctor.  She finds out I spoke to dad and, for a moment, is terse, but quickly resumes that gentle familiarity, like a mother talking to a young child.  I’m not a little girl anymore, but there is comfort there, a comfort I haven’t found in many, many years.  Soured, though, by my own notions, the truths I am privy to.

She agrees to Key West, too, but mother has never been one for commitments.  Even before being drunk, I remember her fickle nature often had her late or forgetting completely.  I take it with a grain of salt, happy that she’s not yelling at me for getting married there.  We speak lightly and it comes time for it all to end.  Before I can say anything, she begins.

‘Big changes are coming, baby.  I just want you to be ready for them, okay?  I love you.’

I was never very fond of change.