Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Mid-life crisis?

Do women have mid-life crises? Apparently it's a proven fact that men do. They put on toupees, buy convertibles, have affairs, etc. What about us? Isn't it bad enough that we have to have periods, PMS, bear children and go through menopause?

Of course, you can look at a mid-life crisis as a good thing or a bad thing. It can be good, because it certainly looks like fun, doesn't it? Bad, because it's frustrating and unsettling and can sometimes really upset or ruin your family. True?

I don't consider myself anywhere near mid-life, but I'm definitely going through something. All through my high school and college years, I strove to be the woman in the power suit and running shoes. I was going to live in a big city in a fantastic apartment and have a powerful job.

Here I am, still in West Virginia, living out in the sticks. I'm a soccer mom with an SUV, a mortgage and unfortunately a job that I hate. I didn't used to hate it. I used to have fun at it. Even through all the political bull shit we endured here, I still enjoyed what I did.

I don't enjoy it anymore.

Ever since Sam was born, I wanted to be a SAHM. It's not even about that anymore, especially because he is in school now. It's about doing something I enjoy. It's about doing something that makes a difference in someone else's life. It's about doing something with meaning and purpose.

I don't mind work. Lord knows, Dad instilled that in me a long, long time ago. I just want something different. I tell friends that and they say to apply for another job. Well, that's just the same old same old. Same shit, different day and I don't want any part of it.

So what do I want to do? Oh, I know what I want to do. I've talked about it for a couple years now. The big question is: Do I have the balls to go out on that limb and take a risk? I think I do, if I just had Ron's support.

He's too worried about the bottom line and doesn't want to accumulate any debt after I quit here. I can understand that, but he doens't understand how unhappy I am. I'm not in a better mood ever than when it is 3:30 on Friday because I know I don't have to think about this place for a couple days. Sunday afternoon, I start getting bitchy because I know Monday is coming.

I just feel like you have to sacrifice sometimes for you happiness. I just wish he would take this little leap with me.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Busy weekend

Wow. Our weekend was full! Our special Friday night activity was carving pumpkins and this bad mommy didn't get any pictures. I'll try to take one tonight. The pumpkin we did turned out great. A girl in the neighborhood wouldn't believe that we had actually done it ourselves until she saw our mess! LOL

Saturday morning was the soccer game. Sam, unfortuantely, is a follower and does so much better when he has stronger players on his team.... Lord, that child is just like me. Ugh! How do you teach a child to be a leader when both parents are mealy mouths?

When we got home Eric had already dug the ditch for the new drainage line. WooHoo!!! I'm so excited to see this job and done right. Despite the fact that we've already spent thousands to do this very thing, hopefully it will get done right this time.

We had tie-dye birthday party Saturday afternoon. That was... interesting. That mother is definitely braver than I am. LOL

Sam enjoyed working alongside Eric. Hopefully he was a help and not a hindrance.

Too cute! He and Dad would have had a BALL together! Life just isn't fair sometimes.

Sam got to go to Lowe's with Eric and Haley and Daddy Saturday night so he was all excited!

Sunday started with a trip a grocery store. Then, another birthday party. Sunday afternoon and evening were again fill with Sam following Eric around the yard mirroring his every move.

I finally snapped some pictures of Sam in his glasses. You can tell that he is none too happy with me taking them, but I just had to!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

We came, We saw.... We cried

So, we are about a month into kindergarten and, this morning, there were still tears. It truly is breaking my heart and I just don't understand it. Out of all the "worst case scenarios" I could come up with involving Sam going off to kindergarten, separation anxiety was NOT on the list.

We actually had two good days this week. Psst, it's only Wednesday! LOL I really thought we were over the hump and there would be no more tears.

Of course this morning the schedule was all off because of the selling of the yo yos from The Ned Show, which is an entirely different story. And we all know that the Samster is a definite creature of habit and as soon as he gets used to the morning routine, they throw a cog in the wheel and change it on him!

I'm hoping for an uneventful evening and an early bedtime... for both of us!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

You can let go now

Wind blowin' on my face
Sidewalk flyin' beneath my bike
A five year-old's first taste
Of what freedom's really like

He was runnin' right beside me
His hand holdin' on the seat
I took a deep breath and hollered
As I headed for the street

You can let go now,
DaddyYou can let go
Oh, I think I'm ready
To do this on my own
It's still .. it still feels .. a little bit scary
But I want you to knowI'll be ok now,
DaddyYou can let go

I was standin' at the altar
Between the two loves of my life
To one I've been a daughter
To one I soon would be a wife
When the preacher asked,'Who gives this woman?'
Daddy's eyes filled up with tears
He kept holdin' tightly to my arm
'Till I whispered in his ear

You can let go now, Daddy
You can let go
Oh, I think I'm ready
To do this on my own
It's still .. it still feels .. a little bit scary
But I want you to knowI'll be ok now, Daddy
You can let go

It was killin' me to see
The strongest man I ever knew
Wastin' away to nothin'
In that hospital room'
You know he's only hangin' on for you'
That's what the night nurse said
My voice and heart were breakin'
As I crawled up in his bed, and said

You can let go now, Daddy
You can let go
Your little girl is ready
To do this on my own
It's gonna be a little bit scary
But I want you to know
I'll be ok now, Daddy
You can let go
You can let go- Crystal Shawanda

Wow. I heard this song on the radio the other day and had to pull over I was crying so hard. I know my dad was a monster during his last several years and sometimes he was a monster before that.

I lived in the shadow of "the other shoe" because we were always waiting for it to drop. Although I was always under the threat of that shoe, there were times when it felt like I had a "daddy" and not a "father."

He could be light and funny. He could be the stereotypical tough guy dad like meeting my prom date at the door, gun in hand and a couple day's worth of stubble on his face. That wasn't impromptu. He had planned it, which meant he was thinking about me and how to make that night more memorable for me.

Was he at every Friday night halftime performance? No, but mom says he came to a lot of them. Was he at every Black Knight Revue? Nope, but he did watch my parts on tape. He was right there at senior night, though. He was in pain because of his back and didn't feel like being there, but there he stood with my name hanging around his neck presenting me with a flower when my name was called.

But those damn strokes took every bit of the good part of him away from us. All we had left was the bad and the bad was worse than it was before. He was a shell of himself at my wedding. He didn't have any idea what was going on.

Can you imagine how he would have been if he had been in his right mind? Can you imagine him in the bride room or in the vestibule right before we walked down the aisle? He couldn't even walk me down the aisle! He had to wait on me at the end and didn't really understand what he was doing there. He would have made that day even more special for me because no matter what happened, I was his Princess and that's just the image I was going for on my wedding day... before the strokes. He didn't get the symbolism after.

I have friends, a couple almost twice my age, that still have their parents. I have friends that bitch and moan about their parents stopping over unannounced. Do you know what I would give for the "old Dad" to stop over unannounced right now? He would walk in, sit down for two minutes and then announce, "Let's go!" He would be joking, though. That was Dad.

We didn't get to bid him a proper farewell because of how he was at the end. We had to watch him deteriorate into a stuttering, stumbling shell of a man who used to be the strongest man I knew. He was a "man." The kind you could threaten your boyfriend with if he treated you wrong. The kind that would change the oil in the backyard, change all 4 tires on your car, mow the yard, prune a tree, paint the fence, then come in for lunch.

In the end, he couldn't even walk across the floor on his own.

He could do all those thing and he could turn right around and scream and cuss and make you feel like the smallest, most worthless piece of shit that ever lived on the face of the earth. Sometimes he would try to make it up to us, sometimes he wouldn't. I didn't appreciate the good times because of the looming memory of the bad times. I wish I would have taken more time to relish in the good. The badminton games, the vacations, the Sunday drives, the pearls of wisdom he tried to communicate, the endless talks of "the good old days," the Christmases he tried to make special.

Instead, I waited in silent pause for that other shoe to drop. I hated that shoe. Sometimes it fell on one of us kids, but most of the time it fell on mom. She bore the brunt for all of us. She is living her freedom now. But, damn, if she doesn't still feel guilty for it. We wonder if he will forever have a hold on our minds. We wonder if we will ever be free from his criticism.

Right at the time I think I'm ok with everything, I hear a song like the one I quoted above and I get mad all over again. Why was I cheated? Why didn't I get my dream wedding where I got to wipe a tear off my daddy's cheek? Why didn't I get to join in the laughter when my daddy wouldn't let go when the preacher asked "who gives this woman?" Why didn't I get to dance with my daddy in the spotlight at my reception?

There's a whole lot about all of this that I just don't understand and wonder if I ever will. What was he saying that last day in the hospital? He was saying something. Why couldn't I understand him. I'm the one that is the most like him. Why couldn't I get what he was trying to communicate. He was trying to get up, did he have enough strength to make it if we would have left the vent on for just a bit longer? The doctors say no, sometimes my heart says otherwise.

Does he know we did everything we could? Does he know that we did what we thought he would want us to do? He gave that rose to mom at the funeral, I truly believe he made that happen. Does that mean that he sees now the hell he put her and us through? Is he sorry?
I've been typing and typing and it's all very choppy. I don't know how to end it, so I'll just end it and hope that I find peace with all of this very soon.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Day 4 of the Robertson Disney Vacation

Ok, Day 4, EPCOT day. The thing I was MOST looking forward to at EPCOT was Soarin'. I was soooo excited to ride this ride. We, of course, had to take some pictures first.

Then Sam and I made a beeline for Soarin'. He wasn't too excited about it because it was an indoor thing, which immediately convinced him it wouldn't be fun. Because of my lifelong desire to skydive or hand glide, this was an almost religious experience. I know that sounds so corny, but it was so realistic. The sights, the sounds, the smells even. It was very cool.

After having ridden it, I knew Ron could handle it so we went out, got him and went back in. Sam took his shoes off this time and loved it! LOL He said the trees tickled his toes. LOL Ron really liked it too. He was hesitant at first, but once he relaxed he liked it.

Because I've waited so long to blog about this, I can't really remember anything in the proper order. I know, bad me. Anyway, I know we rode Test Track a million times that day. We all really enjoyed that one.

Then the one and only Kidcot station we did was in the gift shop at the exit of Test Track... see? There they go again with these friggin gift shops at the end of ride queues.

Much of EPCOT was simply in the atmosphere, which Sam did not appreciate very much. LOL Spaceship Earth was closed for refurb so we didn't get to go in there.

Then it was time for Mission: Space. I was also VERY excited for this because of my childhood dream to be an astronaut. I remember those days so vividly. I was going to be the first woman on Mars, I just knew it. The day the Challenger fell out of the sky changed my life. I figured that on Mission: Space I could experience just a taste of what I was missing.

Because Ron and Sam also wanted to ride it, we rode the Green side (no spinning). I became a little weary when I saw that even this side came equipped with barf bags, but I was still ok. It was very cool. The graphics were great and the fact that it was interactive really drew you in as "passengers." Sam was so excited to be "Commander Sam!" When we got off, I told Ron, "Ok. You know I have to go ride the orange side now. I just have to." He shook his head and said, "I know. Go on."

Off I went with confidence. Never have I gotten sick on a ride. Never! I've ridden the biggest and baddest of amusement park rides and never so much as a stomach flutter. This was going to be noooo problem.

They put me in the space pod with a father and his two daughters who were probably 7 or 8. It started... 10..9...8...7...6...5...4...3...2...1... BLAST OFF!!! Spinning, spinning, spinning... Oh good Lord, what is that pain on my chest? Get this elephant off my chest! No! Don't turn that way! Don't bounce! Why are those asteroids in my way?! Why aren't these little girls terrified??? Ok, we're in orbit. It's calmer now. Pain in my chest has subsided somewhat. C'mon Sarah. You can do this! It's no big deal. Besides you've got no way out now. You are stuck for the entire 3.5 minutes of hell. Oh dear God, we're heading for the asteroid belt! The bouncing! The spinning! The jerking! The pain in my chest! Can't close my eyes. Can't look away. Lieutenant Dan said not to in our pre-flight instructions. Must focus to keep from.... ...... I really need to reach for a barf bag. I think I might lose it. BAM! We finally landed on the surface of Mars. Pain in my chest has subsided again; however, breakfast is quickly on its way up. I strain to reach a barf bag. The giggling little girls in the pod with me aren't giggling so much now, are they? I didn't lose it, thank GOD! Just thought I was going to.

Dear God, thank you for putting me back on stable ground. They opened up the pod to let us out and I couldn't move. I swear I don't think I have ever felt so bad in my life. I was completely disoriented, my legs and arms were like spaghetti. I very slowly made it through the corridors back to the exit. Dayum! Those corridors were like a mile long. The father and the girls kind of stayed with me to make sure I got out ok. Sweet, but annoying because they kept talking to me and asking questions.

Once outside, I sat on the fountain and put my head between my knees, using my trusty barf bag to fan myself with. A portly gentleman, smoking a cigarette comes over. He doesn't speak to me, but to Ron and tells Ron to tell me to breath into the bag like I am hyperventilating and that should take some of the nausea away. I complied and it worked a little bit. I'm telling you, I have never felt so bad in my life. I just didn't feel.... "right." you know? We sat there for a good 20-30 minutes. Thankfully, there was a fountain and space for Sam to run around and play or he would have been mega upset at this crimp in the plans.

We had early, early dinner reservations at Coral Reef that I was sooo looking forward to. I told Ron we could go ahead and go but I probably wouldn't be able to eat very much. He didn't want me to have to do that so we cancelled our prize dinner reservations and moved on. *sigh*

We went on the Nemo ride, which was pretty lame in my opinion, but my head was still spinning for my space capers.

After Nemo we looked around in the aquarium area waiting on Turtle Talk with Crush to begin:

We even found Nemo, if you look veeerrrrry closely:

Turtle Talk with Crush was absolutely hilarious!! I could have done that 10 times in a row! Sam sat up front and was just mesmorized by Crush! We have it all on video and I'm so glad we did.

Then, on the way out, Sam got eaten by Bruce the Shark.

Past the Nemo Pavillion area, there was this great grassy area with flowers where people were walking, sitting, lying down and kids were playing. It was a beautiful green space in a sea of concrete:

Sam played in there with some kids for a good 20 minutes while I made new dinner reservations.

After playing we began making our way to Germany to go to the Biergarten for dinner. We saw some pretty cool stuff along the way:

Belle and the Beast:

Snow White and some dwarfs

Banzaii exhibit:

I've never seen a place make impatients look so beautiful. Pictures do not do it justice:

Rafiki and Simba:

Dinner at the Biergarten was ok. I wasn't crazy about the food, but I still wasn't feeling 100% either. The absolute best part was when the little polka band invited all the kids out on the dance floor. It was a freakin hoot!! I have it on video too, but I can't seem to get it posted here. If anyone would like to lend assistance, I would be VERY grateful! My baby was out there just shakin his booty. He didn't care who was watching. He didn't care who was around. He was free and loving life. It seriously brought tears to my eyes watching him.

We decided to make this a little bit of an early night because we had had a very late night the night before and were planning on a late night the next day... did that all make sense?

Anyway, on the way back to the front, Sam (and Daddy) had to play in a few of the Cool Zone areas.

A few pictures on the way out and we were on our way back to the hotel. I LOVE Sam's eyes and expressions in this series of pictures. They crack me up every time I look at them.

And thus ends Disney Day 4 in the Robertson's Disney Adventure. I don't have a sleeping picture of the boy because he stayed awake this time. LOL

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Disney Day 3 - MGM and Magic Kingdom

Day 3 of the Robertson Family Disney Adventure was supposed to be spent at Magic Kingdom, but I just had a feeling about MGM so we changed our plans up a bit and went there.

I'll tell you up front, this post will be VERY heavy on pictures. This was our busiest day at the World. We did a TON of stuff but had oh so much fun!

Off to MGM!

YAY!! We're at Disney! LOL The photographer told us to do that... Sam wasn't too sure.

When we got there and looked at the Times Guide, we saw that Mater and McQueen were supposed to do their meet and greet in an hour or so. After asking about 5 people where exactly they would be, we wandered around the immediate area for a bit taking pictures and such.

As we passed one intersection, I looked down the side street and saw a sight that truly took my breath away.

Isn't it beautiful? That's just a wall. Completely flat. I had to touch it just to convince myself. I don't know why I was so entranced by this, but I stood there and stared at for what seemed like forever.

Sam waited long enough for me to take a picture:

Then he was off to find Michelle.... think Michelle Tanner on the old sitcom Full House.

Then we found Herbie the Lovebug... Sam tried to get in and drive:

Then we happened upon the Singin in the Rain umbrella. I hadn't heard about this so it was surprise to me when Ron stepped underneath it. LOL Sam thought it was very cool.

Mom had to play, too:

Sam had never seen a phone booth before so he was intrigued.

We figured we had wasted enough time so we went back to "San Francisco" to wait on Mater and McQueen. We met another family there that were waiting as well. We were the only two families on the street. They said this was their 3rd time trying to meet the Cars without a wait of a couple hours so they were staying put! LOL Sam and the other kids played on these cute brownstone houses they had set up just like in San Francisco. MGM was a really neat place to see.

Anybody home??!!

Guess not... I'll just chill out here and wait on them...

It wasn't too long before we heard the music and engines revving and here came the Cars!!

It took me a loooong time before I could make Sam understand why Mater and McQueen couldn't sign his autograph book. He was convinced that because they could do stuff in the movie that they should be able to sign his book. Oy.

Can you believe that after that other family had waited so long and we had waited there about 30 minutes that people still tried to jump in front of us. I even had heard one family speaking English to each other but when they tried to jump in front of us and the other lady said no, they acted like they didn't understand English? Unbelievable!

So, I figured we were done meeting characters for right then and we were on our way to the Tower of Terror!!!!

Ummm, nope! We rounded the street outside of San Francisco and it looked like a freakin street fair or something. There were Power Rangers everywhere!! Sam doesn't even know what a Power Ranger is, but by God, he wanted his picture with them. It was too funny. Now these guys were as serious as a heart attack while doing their poses and stuff.

Wait? How'd that go?

I got it now!

No problem with this one!

Now what was that again?

Ok, if you say so...

I think this guy was his favorite.

After all the meet and greets it was totally time for Tower of Terrorrrrr!!!!! I was SO looking forward to this ride and I honestly thought Sam would chicken out, but he didn't! We used a LOT of our Disney mantra, but he made it through and still says that this ride was his favorite part of Disney. It was awesome, too! It was everything I expected and more. Disney not only makes the actual ride a ride, but the queue is an experience as well. It's just unbelievable.

In the gift shop at the exit of ToT:

Just whose idea was it anyway to make the exit of a ride queue go through a freakin gift store? I mean, are you kidding me? There's absolutely no way to avoid it. To exit the ride area, you must go through the gift shop. Oy.

Next was lunch at Toy Story's Pizza Planet... Thank GOD the arcade portion was closed for refurb. We may have never gotten out of there!

And this was just a beautiful hibiscus I saw while walking through the park:

Then it was on to Al's Toy Barn to see about Buzz and Woody. We found some interesting stuff along the way:

Sam was so stoked to meet Buzz and Woody. They didn't sign autographs but they had stamps they used to put their names in the autograph book.

We wandered our way back through the park and stopped and watched some of the street performers on our way out. At this point we went back to the hotel for what I hoped would be a nap, but it turned in to pool time. I knew we had a long evening ahead of us and I was hoping he'd get some rest... no chance of that! LOL Mom was outvoted!

Our first of two character dinners was scheduled for this evening: Chef Mickey's. We honestly did not know what to expect. I, of course, feared the worst. I feared us not being able to eat because we were standing in line the entire time to get some face time with the characters... Not so. The characters are the ones who go from table to table. It was buffet so Ron would go first and get food for him and Sam. Then I would go and get my food and anything else I saw for them that I thought they might like. We didn't want Sam to leave the table for fear that he would miss a character. It was actually very nice and very enjoyable. Yes, it was louder than a normal restaurant would have been but it was so much fun! We had a ball!





You're funny, Donald!

He puts the autograph books on his nose to sign them.

I'm sure Sam is explaining something to him. LOL

Dancing with Minnie:

She liked his dancin'!

The view from our table:


From there I guess we were gluttons for punishment because we then took the monorail to Magic Kingdom until it closed. I had originally planned on having an early evening, but Ron and Sam got their second winds... I figure it was all those chocolate Mickey heads they ate at dinner! LOL

The castle at twilight:

Sam on the teacups:
Weeeeeee!!! This is fun!!!

Whoa mom, that was fast!

And thus ends Robertson Disney Adventure Day 3. Shhhhhhhhhh.......

He was asleep before we even got on the bus this time.