Random thoughts and musings of a single Mom striving to follow dreams and find pure BLISS.

Interests and Dealbreakers

So, I started composing this in my head last night while driving home from Hattiesburg, home from my date with LC. I thought about how my life has changed evolved over the past decade. As a young 22 year old (I'm NOT 33 yet, people) I had a definitely LIST of what I wanted in a guy. Let me just tell you that this list was long, detailed, and definitely specific. Now, I was no different from any of my friends or any other girls I knew because we ALL had lists, but I had no idea where the LIST would lead-eventual disaster. Yep, the ex embodied the list. He met pretty much every singe requirement, even "Must be able to recite Shakespeare" and I thought I must be the luckiest girl ever. Now, when the world blew up on me I began to readjust my perspective. As I healed up I decided that the list did me wrong or maybe I just did the list wrong. Yeah, I did the list wrong.  Instead of concentrating on a list of random attributes I should have thought about things that would make life happier.

This being said, I have developed The Dealbreakers. There are not very many, but they are concrete, unchangable, and nonnegotiable.

1-Addictionless. I will never again subject myself to dealing with alcoholism or any other additction that takes away from me or my family.
2-Must love my babies and be willing to be an "instant dad" because my children have no other, and barely remember the "donor". (In fact, Cait doesn't at all. She thinks my dad is her dad.) 

Yep, that's it. No Shakespeare. No physical features. No specific personality traits. Just no addicts and love my babies. Why? Those are the things that are super important to me and were the issues that caused strife in my life and my former marriage.

That being said, I bet you guys want me to just get on with the discussion of my date yesterday. Well, it went a little something like this...

By the time I got to Hattiesburg, I really was thinking I'd have to pull over to throw up. I mean, I was chewing a piece of gum (Hey, I drank a lot of coffee during class, don't judge) and even my little piece of Big Red was making me gag. Yep, it was pretty bad. Thankfully, just being in the Burg relaxes me, so that's a big plus. I also found out a very significant thing about myself yesterday; I feel compelled to constantly reapply mascara when nervous.Ii think I had on at least 6 layers and the details of my eyelashes could be seen for at least a mile. Just saying.

Anyway, he arrived just before me and my first thought was, "Holy shit he's tall. Ooo I don't think I've ever seen a guys truck that clean in my life." (Don't you guys just love my inner monologue?! Such an insite to my random-ass psyche.) Since he was there first there was no final hair fluff or lipstick check (SO glad I reapplied at the last stop light) so I just got out of the car, took a deep breath, and walked over to him. I was right...he is seriously tall. Seriously, I had too look up at him and didn't even come up to his shoulder. (I realize that I'm pretty short at 5'3", but he's like 6'1". More about that later.)

I won't bore anyone with the details like he has really pretty eyes (A blue/grey that have an inner and outer ring of darker blue) that never left my face, even though I had on a V neck top. He might have peaked when my head was turned, but I never noticed. Call me crazy, but that's a sign of a polite and very disciplined guy.

I referred to him above as a guy, but actually, guy is the wrong word for him.  He's a man. A grown man. And as scary as that sounds to me, it was nice to be in the company of someone who was totally comfortable with himself and his life. He is every bit of who I saw yesterday and that was so new and relaxing.

I had a great time. I found myself smiling at the strangest moments-like the whole time. We laughed the entire time. When we sat next to one another it was toally natural for him to put his arm around me to play with my hair. I was every bit of who I naturally am-my opinions, my thoughts, my mannerisms, my voice where I would normally feel as though I should shift or alter myself to present the "best face" (see earlier post She's Shifty for examples). He held my hand it felt as though it had always been there. He even continued to pay attention to me as he had to take a work call; we all know I'm a sucker for attention.

I felt important. But most importantly...

I never felt anxious, which you guys know is almost crazy talk. In fact, it continued on the way home because I had no wild, nervous energy to work off or think out. I simply drove home and spoke to him occasionally as he checked up on me at random intervals.

He texted me this morning to tell me he had a great time and I was "awesome", plus making usre I'd had a nice time. 

I'd say it a good sign....

Let it Burn!!

I just HAVE to tell you guys what happened today!!! I received a letter from the ex. (You, know, whatshisname.)

Anyway, I decided to read the letter because, "whynot right?" and I wanted to laugh out loud. Actually, I think I did laugh out loud. then I immediately handed it to my Pop to read and MJ read it after that. It was almost like I was in jr high letting all my friends read the creepy guy note after I'd already told him to buzz off. It was purely meant to humiliate the sender and vindicate my decision to tell him to buzz off. (This is a hypothetical situation only for me. I was never the mean girl, even when I really wanted to be (that's yet another post I guess). I was, however, often the "friend" that got to read the humiliating letters.)  

Regardless...he wrote to tell me happy birthday. In fact, the exact wording was, "I know you birthday isn't until next Monday..." 


What an amazing testament to our eight (count them eight) year marriage. For those playing the home game, my birthday is on Tuesday the 28th, not Monday the 27th. Nice huh? Nine years together, eight years married, two children, and he still can't remember my fucking birthday.

Happily, I only laughed at both the gaff and the letter itself because, dear friends, it bothered me not! Absofuckinglutly not!! Go me!!  If you read the previous posts you probably have a vague idea about why, but if not suffice it to say that I believe I can finally and with all certainty close the door on all of that nonsense.

It feels good to be free. And, by damn, it feels good to be me.

This week

I know it's been a while since I last posted, but, in all honesty, I just have not known what to say. I mean there are so many random things going on my my little head that I haven't really been able to focus on any one thing at all.

Seriously, just as a "for example"...

  • Tristan's finger decided to become infected again.
  • I've been attempting to write little stories of a magazine, but finding it harder than expected.
  • I think I've had a headache about every day. (But I think I've found the culprit for that one.)
  • I've texted and talked on the phone with the nicest guy pretty much every day for the past few weeks. 
  • The library keeps sending me books I put on hold not thinking everything would be ready at once.
  •  I have 20 essays to grade each week from my ju-co class in addition to my Phoenix classes.
yep, you totally read that correctly. I have been talking on the phone like a silly teenager these past few weeks-giggling, flirting, talking, and occasionally listening to slience because I have no other idea what to say but just can't hang up the phone. Now, we haven't hit the 3 hour mark again like the first night because he is way too responsible to stay up until 1 in the morning every night, but we probably could.

So, I guess you could say that I've maintained complete distraction for a few weeks now, but I'm not complaining. I mean, I'm still losing weight-dropped another jeans size-but havinte even been able to get to the gym in weeks. *sigh*  I just keep hoping that I make it "tomorrow", whenever that is.

Oh, I've also been trying to figure out the perfect "date" outfit for Saturday. I think I'm so in trouble, but in every imaginable good way. We will just have to see.


One of the blogs I follow posts a brilliant question that instantly resonated with me, "What advice would you give your 15 year old self?"

Wow, Julie Musil you just totally rocked my world with that!! You say, just for fun and mention to not wear high waisted jeans or maybe not turning down Bill Gates at the prom, but I'm afraid mine may be a bit more serious than that...just maybe.

Let's 15 I was a 9th grader at Colmer Jr. High. Remarkably, it was actually a good year for me and I do not remember very many things that cloud up that year for me. However, I did begin a pattern that year that would significantly infect the next 15ish years of my life...I passed on "crushes" I had out of pure fear and never took the chance, the leap of faith, to see what would happen.

Now, don't get me wrong, I don't regret anything because, good or bad, I am the person I am because of my collective life experience, but I can't help but wonder what life would have been like had I ever believed I was worth the chance. I was good enough for myself and the world. Would my crushes still have been my crushes? Would my boyfriends still have been my boyfriends?  Would my choices still have been my choices?

Good question...

However, I think I might take that chance.

I'd tell that 15 year old me to look into the mirror and see that the world sees, not what I believe I see. That I am truly beautiful and worthy of love, beauty, trust, and love. That I have talents that have hardly been tapped, but I need to cultivate and promote those talents-not to hide from them or be ashamed of them. And most certainly not be so self conscious of myself that I would wait years to ever show anyone a piece of writing and still feel inept. 

Of course this begs another to you ensure a 15 year old has self esteem? I ask because I know I didn't, but I hope and pray to every Deity I can possible think of that I am able to ensure Caitlin has more than her share.  (Tristan too, but it is mainly a girl issue, especially since she looks like me but acts like my sister and mother. I am just at a loss about what to do with her as she gets older.)

If anyone has tips or ideas on how to keep a healthy self image in girls as they grow up I'd love to hear them because I fear failing her every day. I fear looking to her eyes as a teenager and seeing myself radiating back so strongly that I know exactly what she will do or say next. I'm not sure how I will react to ever see the pain emanating from her the way I always felt mine did. Of course, I guessing it really didn't since no one ever noticed it.

So far, I make sure I tell her daily...

How much I love her (because I do),
How smart she is (because she is),
How pretty and beautiful she is (even though I feel a bit vain saying it since she really does look like me),
How funny she is (because she is a total goof-ball),
How talented she is (She's a dancer, for real, y'all!),
How proud I am of her when she does anything.
And how much I love her...with lots of kisses and cuddles.

Truthfully, that's all I really know to do. I'm sure I will ask for advice man more times as she grows because this issue has plagued me since the day I found out I was having a girl. (Imagine being elated and then terrified in tandem.) How can I help her become the person she is supposed to be?

Nothing Much

I really don't have much to say, but I did want to make sure you guys knew I was alive and well.


In truth, I do have a date on saturday. Yep, it's someone new. Who knew that I would become a serial dater and flit from fella to fella. Crazy talk, right?! Anyway, this one is quite a bit different from the ones before. This one makes me nervous, where the other ones never did. It was alway slike "Oh, ok. So, it's a date." But it's not nerve-wraking in a bad, creepy, scary way; only in a good, butterfies in tummy way. (which is pretty scary.)

However, I will not say another word about it until it's over...But do feel free to wish me luck.

On Love

People talk about love all the time. In fact, we probably over used the word; after all can we really love everything we claim to love?

If I say I love a movie or a song or a pair of shoes,  does it take away the meaning from when I say I love my children? It's different, of course, but is it possible to love a person and a pair of shoes the same amount, but on different planes?

I ask because, like most girls, I really expected love to be this amazing force that spun me around and made me see the world in a totally different way. Something huge and overwhelmingly powerful that takes your breath away. Now did I feel that about "whatshisname"? No, but by point I didn't figure it was physically possible for me to fall in love and I was using a mini-checklist to find the perfect guy. (The reason I didn't think I could actually feel love is for another post because, truthfully, I have NO idea where that idea came from.)

However, the love I feel for my children isn't even that crazy, powerful way. It's much more  of a quiet feeling that ebbs higher at certain times, but it's always there. It's not even something I'm concious of; it almost feels like another appendage-it's just there. Is that what actual love, like romantic love, feels like too?

I mean I always thought I was very much an Elinore, but I'm thinking maybe I've been a Marianne all along, but tried to force myself into Elinore's shoes. (Note-If you have neither read or seen the Emma Thompson version of Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austin you will just not understand that statement no matter how hard I try to expalin it.)

I mean, how much have the lines, "Can the soul really be satisfied with such polite affections? To love is to burn, to be on fire. Like Juliet or Guinevere or Eloise." always resonated with my heart? But that would be infatuation woudn't it? A blaze that fades and fizzles as time rides by and eventually leaves you shivering. Perhaps, instead, it is a slow, quite smolder that, much like the love I have for the kids, flares and burns at times and then dies back into something comforting and manageable, easy to maintain. Is that really it? I know most of you are married, faithful few? Is that really what it is? Have I finally unlocked some mystery that has puzzled me for 32 years?

Is the true fairy tale just being happy to smile into the eyes for someone else for years?

These are things I need answered guys...come on. I need a bit of help here.

Birthday Wishes

In honor of my birthday I have decided to buy myself a present whoever, I have no idea what I want.

No, that's not quite right. The problem is I want almost everything I see because I never let myself really have anything. *sigh*  I'm going to try to narrow down my focus over the next week and post different choices of things that are in my price range (because really, I'd almost sell appendages to have the beautiful Tiffany blue suede bag from Tiffany's new handbag line. ) and would be at least a scosh practical for my life. (unlike said Tiffany blue suede bag mentioned before.)

I'm going to scour my favorites that fit this criteria and update this post as necessary.

The first thing I loooooove could actually be an awesome present and allow me to get something else too because I found it through The Creative Crate giveaway. If my "number" is chosen I have the opportunity to win this beauty right here>>

Isn't it amazing? It's from an etsy shop called Three Scoops of Love AND the girl's name is Jamie. HA! It's like its fate or something that I have to have it. It's beautiful, anything (almost) can be stamped on the copper teardrop, and it's only $40. Can you believe it!!!?? (BTW, it's a 30 inch chain.)

Let's see, possibility number 2 is.....

Smiles All Around

So, for those that do not follow me on facebook, which means for those who aren't in my immediate family,  I and having the BEST time begin back in the classroom, even if it is only on a part time basis. I swear that it gets  more fun with each class.

But first a bit of back story...the class I'm teaching at the local Community College (MSGCC-JC to be exact) is a short term Comp I & Comp II class. In essence, they will get a year's worth of English in one semester. Tough, but great to get things out of the way. Anyway, the "normal" teacher is out with back surgery. She has been the ONLY person to ever teach these two particular class. EVER!

A majority of the students were expecting her, only to see my smiling face the first day. Needless to say, those expecting her had reservations until about half way through the first class.

That begin said, last night I was told the coolest thing EVER and had to share...I had a student, a returning non-traditional student who had talked to and expected the "other" lady to be exact, told me on her way out of the class that she and another student were discussing me during one of the class breaks. (It's a 5 hour class, we take lots of breaks.) She told me that they were both really glad that I was their teacher and couldn't imagine the other teacher being anywhere as supportive and fun as I am.

Now I tried to be modest and replied, "Well I hope you both still feel that way in December," but inwardly, my faithful few, I was preening like a peacock.

Damn, it's hard to be humble sometimes.

Let's just hope comments like that make their way around campus and land me a permanent position. Fingers cross people. Fingers crossed!!!

Smack me in the Face and Let's Start Again.

As I'm lying down to sleep, which I dearly need to do right now, I begin thinking about this search that has gotten started. It's something very akin to The Great Guy Search. I realized that every time I find myself in the vicinity of a male I instantly check out that left hand. It's almost a compulsion now. It wasn't until I was standing in the check out line in Hell Walmart that I noticed I had made a mental note of wedding rings on every male around me.

When did I become this girl? I mean, I'm not feeling some deep societal push to couple up because all of my friends are like "Meh, give it time." I'm not feeling familial pressures because my Pop has already made that one abundantly clear. I believe the conversation went something along the lines of, "I hope to hell you think you have to get married again just to make it because that's bullshit and unnecessary." I might have missed a word here or there, but that was the general message. I've always thought my Pop had such a way with words...

So, back to the whole bed thing...I'm thinking about my newest obsession with wedding rings and realize that, again, I have listened to my Pop, but not heard him. I found the kernel of doubt that has me looking searching and thinking I need a man in my life because (drum roll please) I seriously do not think it will ever be possible for me to live on my own with Things 1 and 2 without any sort of support or help from my Pop.

I mean, examining the evidence in questions so far, it's pretty plain why that issue exists. 
  • teaching adjunct online
  • teaching adjunct at community college
  • no full time job
  • no one is hiring (or at least not hiring me)
  • I actually had to swallow my pride and borrow money from my Pop for my bills last month. (I get paid very erratically from U of P and won't get a ju co one until the end of Sept. Let's just say that I cried, my Pop wrote a check and couldnt' figure out how to make me not cry. It was just beyond me, but yet, he understood. Yes, pride is my Sin of choice.)
  • I have 2, count them 2, children. Two.
Now when I think about "How Long" it been I am slightly deceived. Although I have been "married since June of 2009 (I don't care WHAT the law says; in my soul I was NOT married as of May 21-when I came out of my haze. Damnit!), I have only lived with my parents since after Christmas. This is what? Month 8? now in my head I should already have everything in life 4x4, but I do realize that life just doesn't work that way.

Kinda like losing weight-it took years to put it on so it'll take years to take off. Great in theory, but shitty in practice. I just hate waiting. (Humm, do I smell another bout of pride? Why, yes, yes I do!)  And it's especially hard for me because, lets face it, numbers have never been my strong suit and I have no idea what it would take for the 3 of us to live without me having constant panic attacks over what bill gets paid this month.  I always think, it was easier having two incomes...well, not really. It should have been easier, but nothing was easy living with, you know, whatshisname.

He's the reason I'm still paying off a credit card that I haven't touched since Tristan was born. thank God I've gotten the others paid off finally, but that one has a pretty hefty balance left on it and every time the bill comes in I get so pissed off I can't even see straight because I know that is because of beer, beer, nights he "had" to get out of the house and drink beer in a bar, more beer, and taking me out to eat once in a bluefuckingmoon. Did I mention beer?

Sorry...bitter rant. Should have warned you. My bad. Anyhoo...

I guess  the long and the short of the issue is that I'm afraid. There I said it. I'm afraid and I'd like someone to swoop in and take care of everything and solve all of these problems that I can't see a way out of.


Umm, last I looked at my birth certificate, it didn't say "Princess" or place silver spoon here AND the last time I got married it didn't solve a single problem.

I need to remember what started this journey. I started it. And I started it so I could make sure that I had a firm hold of "Me" so if, by some chance, since I'm not all that unfortunate looking, someone does come along I never lose me again. I started it so I could rediscover my voice and my passions and my dreams that got lost amid beer cans and nights sleeping alone.

So, like Elizabeth Gilbert says in Eat, Pray, Love...

Operation self esteem. Day fucking one.

(Take, at least, two. SNAP)


Ok, so I know I talked about the 50K in 50 days challenge a few months back. Umm, yeah, that totally didn't happen. I got about 12,000 good words in, but life, lack of motivation, fear and time got in the way.

Lame excuse?

Yep, but that can't be helped now. I still plan to finish but I'm giving myself a bit more time.


Because I think I might have found a way to kinda support myself or at least become well on my way to supporting myself with my writing.


New Love Stories Magazine. That's right; you read it correctly. It's a magazine dedicated to love stories. Although it's not something that I would necessarily read, I plan to write and submit a few stories for publication. I'd only have to write a story between 2,800 to 3,750 words. I think I can certainly knock that out from idea all the way to editing in about a week.

I'll try to keep all of you guys posted on my progress this week, but for now I'm going to work on honing in on just one idea. Wish me luck....

New Beginings with BBQ

So, yesterday was kinda of a downer of a day, as I'm sure you guys realize, but I am newly motivated to get back on the proverbial writing horse.


Oh, I was invited to a BBQ at my new friend, Karen's blog Down the Mountain by my supper, supportive buddy Jessica. I have made some wonderful new friends that give superior writing tips, advice and inspiration. And you guys know that making new friends is part of my new goals I set. One a month. (Hummm, so would making a bunch of blogging friends count separately or do I just add them together as one friend? )

Even though I'm always a bit shy at first, I decided to  show up with my homemade sangria and a decorative patter of tums (What? There's a lot of food. Someone is bound to have interjection and I want to be prepared.)

I'm hoping all of my new buddies will keep me on the path to rediscovering my voice and keeping my head out of all of my mundane frustrations. After all, I know I'm easier to live with when I write it all out instead of just simmering in my own juices.

Welcome to any new faithfuls!

The Thing About Moms.

I don't know if you know this, but I am great with moms. Seriously! My whole life moms have loved me like no one's business. If I dated their sons, they wanted me to be thier daughter in law. If I was friends with their daughters, they wanted ME to be their daughter instead. And I have no idea why because I've never had that same luck with my own.

Strangely enough my absolute favorite teacher in the entire world looks so much like my mom that they have often been mistaken for one another. I distinctly remember having to do double takes occasionally in class. Now, I would have loved, her reguardless of how she looked just for her vitality, positive spirit, and joy, but I cannot express the feelings that washed over me everytime I was given praise for even the smallest thing. Even now, as an adult, I still well up with tears when she showers me with encouragment and praise. Why? Because she is way more generous with it than her doppleganger has ever been. (There were actually times in high school when I would pretend it had been my mom that said those things instead of just me teacher.)

Don't get my wrong, she loves and all that, but I'm still willing to place odds that if she got to go back and choose that daughter she'd really woudn't be me. (Truthfully, it'd be a boy. Yes, as a matter of fact I do know that is true, thank you. I was told.)  The thing is she is just very fugal with her praise and positive encouragement. She tends to say the first thing that pops into her head, which is often a bit harsh. But she is unaware of it.

However, I have just never understood why I am unable to even name the number of mom-type people in my life that think I am beyond wonderful and hav no problem telling me so and my own only finds fault with

I often tought that maybe it's just the way the whole mother/dughter dynamic jsut worked, but I'm not like that with Cait. I cannot even count the number of times a day I tell her how beautiful she is or how smart she is, or how proud I am of her. Now this could be me overcomensationg, but I don't think so. I really and truely, to the bottom of my soul, believe everything I tell her. Maybe I'm just not afraid to tell her.  Maybe I'm just unafraid to release control just a smidge and allow for imperfections to show and accept they exist.

But here I am, just as I was as a kid, hiding my hurt feelings behind a smile to placate and keep the status quo. (And God knows when I mention those feelings it's somehow my fault for feeling that like anyway because I'm way too sensitive.)  Does she get mad and fraustrated with me? Yep. Does she talk to me the same way she ever has? Yep. Do I say anything about it? Not enough to make a difference because I promised Pop I wouldn't.  However, where at first I was afraid that in her frustration with me and the kids she'd eventually force me to leave so she could regain her "space," I know that is one fight my Pop would absolutly fight for me.

The funny thing is...when I do leave she'll cry and be sad and miss us. Too bad she can't channel future feelings into her current ones and not take us (me) for granted while we are here.