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The Writing Mother

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Saturday, April 30, 2005
What are you waiting for?
Do you ever feel like you are biding your time, waiting for something to happen? If you've seen The Incredibles, you may remember the sceen when Mr. Incredible comes home from work, frutstrated by the day to day grind of his boring life. He's depressed and unhappy. The neighbour kid is sitting at the end of the drive, having previously witnessed Mr. Incredible lift the car above his head.

"What are you waiting for?" says Mr. Incredible.

"I dunno," says the kid, "something incredible!"

"Yeah, me too kid," says Mr. Incredible as he turns to head inside.

That's what I feel like somedays... I feel like I'm waiting for something incredible to happen. There are opportunities all around me. Opportunities at work, in my writing, my homelife, my personal life... but I still feel as though I'm on hold. Waiting.

What do you do for inspiration? How do you tap into life and get juiced up on the excitement of it?
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 5:57 PM

Tuesday, April 26, 2005
The Inevitable
Kira posted a wonderful post (what else would you do with a post?) on the father of her boys - or rather how to talk to her boys about their father, seeing as he's not in the picture much. It brought tears to my eyes because the conversation she had with one of her sons is one I dread. I don't think that I am strong enough or brave enough to tell my son the truth.

I guess I am lucky, my son's dad is around, he sees him every weekend. But here's the thing. His dad is a drug addict. Some may disagree, some may say he just uses drugs... or it's just casual. And quite frankly, you can kiss my ass. He's an addict. He could not stop if he tried. The fact that he does not WANT to stop does not factor in. The fact of the matter is, during our very last married person fight I gave him an ultimatum: Us or Drugs. He chose drugs. Plain and simple.

I admit that I often wonder when he will hit bottom. When it will get him. Don't get me wrong, I don't want him dead, I don't want to have to attend his funeral - but he has done some pretty hard core drugs. The ones that when you research them, list 'sudden death' as a SYMPTOM of their use. In fact that drug, Crack, is so addictive that NO ONE can do it just once or twice and then say "eh, I'm done with that"... I don't care how strong you are.

When my son asks me about why his dad and I divorced, what am I supposed to tell him? His dad is around, his dad is in his life... but I can't explain why we are not together as simply. I can't explain it without painting his dad out to be a bad guy. At least I don't know how yet.

Right now I have someone in my life who is an amazing person. He's truly the ying to my yang and the sugar in my coffee. I don't know that I've had any specific concerns about him in a parental role... it's more that I have concerns about anyone other than me in a parental role. I've never co-parented really, I've never allowed anyone to share that task in my house. So far we're doing very well. My son is enthralled with this person, and this person has done a good job of just being there. We're taking it a day at a time I guess.

Anyways, this was about something else, I digress.

I fought hard for my marriage. I fought tooth and nail to bring it back to life. I was never that optimistic, because I was ceratin I knew that the addiction was right down deep in the marrow. But there was no way in hell that I was going to look back in 10 years to say that I hadn't tried. And I tried.

But, the past is the past and for that I'm very glad.

There are just some inevitable conversations that I'm not looking forward to when the time comes. Perhaps it is because of my own parent's marriage that I worry about these conversations. Neither of them did the greatest job at keeping adult problems to the adults - it always spilled over to the kids.

I've promised my son that I will allow him to have normal kid problems and not deal with the adult issues until he's... well... and adult. But these kids, they know so much more than we know, don't they.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 6:43 AM

Sunday, April 24, 2005
Odds and Ends...Bits and Pieces
My son is exactly like me. He should be, I've done 98% of the raising of him - but there are bits of him that are just undeniably ME.

You may remember a few weeks ago he was fully into the WHYWHYWHYWHYWHY phase. Everything needed an explanation. And an explanation of the explanation. "Why is that plane flying mommy?" "Because it is an aerodymanic feat that includes internal combustion and aelerons and wings and propellers or jet engines." "Oh..." That usually shut him down.

At first, silly me, I actually wanted to explain things to him - I figured that he'd be a genuis by five. But soon I realized that he just wanted to engage in a conversation. Once I turned the tables and why'd him a bit, he quit that gig.

Now he's trying to find his comic voice. He'll say something funny, get a laugh, and repeat it ad nauseum.

"Papaya, Papaya, Papaya, Papaya, Papaya.... I said Papaya. Hahahahahahaha...."

At the table tonight my mother and I were trying to not look at him as he tried to choke himself on his popsicle - shoving it into his mouth with abandon and getting chocolate from his eyelids to his chin. "He's a performer," she said, "don't know where he gets that from."

I can remember being five or six, wanting attention so badly I'd memorize jokes from tv, or from Reader's Digest (I was an early reader) so I could repeat them to adults I wanted attention from. For some reason I could never get enough attention. I try not to over-analyze that.

I've finished a few GREAT books this past week:

Why I Hate Canadians
gods in Alabama

I'm also working on a few others:

How to Succeed in Business Without a Penis
Stein on Writing
The Devil Served Tortellini
Something Rising
Dream Coaching
The Midnight Disease
The Wealthy Writer
The Art of Undressing

But I have back ups upon backups... being a book addict and all.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 9:02 PM

Monday, April 18, 2005
I won, I won, I won!

I won my first contest!


I could get used to winning... I like it!
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 8:09 PM

Sunday, April 17, 2005
There I was, in the bath reading a very, very good book when I noticed I was humming a song. I had to sing the words a bit before I realized that it was my wedding song.

I won't bore you with the actual lyrics, but just know that it was Celine Dion and it was as wistful and hopeful as a doomed-wedding-song should be.

I remembered, with a sort of regret, the day I picked it for my wedding. It was only a few days before the actual day of committment (and I mean that in both a marriage and white coat sort of way). I was a few months pregnant and driving to a greenhouse so I could pick out some Ivy for the ceremony.

(As an aside, I had this idea that the ivy would live long and prosper, and that as we moved to a new house I would replant the ivy, taking a bit of it everywhere we went, so that at the age of 80, I would still have a part of the ivy plant that was present at my wedding. The ivy was dead within six weeks.)

I was listening to every romantic song I could think of. The front of my pick up was littered with cd cases. I was hormonal and weepy. And scared.

I chose the song because it was everything that I wanted my marriage to be. The only problem was that it spoke about what a couple had - not what they were trying to achieve. It was all You Give Me Strength when in reality it was "I can be strong enough for us both". It was You Were My Voice When I Couldn't Speak when actually it was "you made me feel fat when I was pregnant". It was I'll Be Forever Thankful when it really was "let's write this down into the custody agreement".

Not that I'm 100% regretful. I have my son. I have lessons... boy oh boy do I have lessons. I've taken them all to heart and made them my very own lessons. Learned by rote in the school of hard knocks.

I'm just trying not to take it out on Celine.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 10:16 PM

I'm Back!
Well. That was a whirlwind trip. Not nearly as long as I thought it would be. For those unaware, I flew to Chicago one way and drove back up with the boyfriend. He'll be here for a couple of months and wanted to have his truck here for that time so we're not car-sharing as much.

First of all, the US Border guys now know waaaay too much about my personal life.

US Guy: So, why you headed down?

Me: Just headed down to meet up with my boyfriend and then we're driving back.

US Guy: Your boyfriend visiting down there.

Me: No. He's an American.

US Guy: Any engagement plans?

Me: Uhhhh, no sir, not at this time.

US Guy: Are you pushing for it or is he?

Me: Uhhhh, neither at the moment.

I understand that they are wanting to keep undesireables out and all... but let's get real. I'm not about to abandon the child up here just so that I can be an American. I mean I like y'all and all.... but...

Arrived in Chicago on Wednesday night and decided to stay there. Spent way too much on a hotel. In the morning we drove right past hotels that were easily 50% of the price I'd just forked out. Bummer.

We just started to drive North and West. Of course we were chatting and catching up - and missed the turn, so we ended up in Minnesota a little ahead of schedule since we were supposed to go farther west and then north. Oh well.

Love Minnes-OH-ta. Had the friendliest waitress ever. Drove towards North Dak-OH-ta: Land of Dead Deer and Bug Swarms.

Stayed in Fargo, ND. Much cheaper hotel.

Figured out that Americans pay WAY LESS for gas than us Canucks. We're around 85-90 cents a litre. They are paying what works out to 60 cents.

Got to the border.

Three hours of: "So, any engagement plans?" "So, when are you moving to Canada?" "So, are you planning on marriage? Have you discussed marriage?"

Geez! Give a couple a little bit of air, would ya?? MAN!

It actually wasn't too bad when I went in to talk to Ms. Canada Border Guard. I explained the reasons for him coming up here. I explained my son, my ties to Canada, my non-marriage plans.

Anyways, the boyfriend got the usual "get out of Canada on this day" card... so he's got to leave by July 6th. Which is fine because he needs to get south and flag wave a bit before then.

And let me interject something. I used to make a bit of fun of my American boyfriend about his 'flag waving' patriotism. No longer. As I've become aware of his US flag all over the countryside, I've become hyper aware of all the Canadian flags we have up in Canada. We have WAY MORE.

If there's a surface to put a flag on/in/over... we stick it up. And if we can't do that, we stick just a maple leaf somewhere on the surface. We are all about our flag. Who knew?

Once we got away from the border we decided to make it as far as we could and Swift Current, Saskatchewan ("One of Canada's Top Ten!"..... uhhh.. top ten what, might I ask?) was it.

But it was not without it's excitement. After leaving the previous town, I casually mentioned that we might want to get fuel. Perhaps I should have been more aggressive, because 45 minutes later all we were staring at was either the black, dark, empty prairie.. or the fuel gauge that was nuzzled up to the E like a long lost child. We finally found Morse, SK and I had to bribe the guy to turn the pumps back on and sell us gas.

Anyways, we made it home.

It feels good. It feels normal. It feels easy.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 7:32 PM

Wednesday, April 13, 2005
Heading Out
Ok, I've gone no mail on all my groups and am sitting on pins and needles!

Leaving today for Chicago where the bf will pick me up and we'll start DRIVING back to Calgary. Should take a couple of days.

I'll be back. PROMISE!
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 10:31 AM

Sunday, April 10, 2005
Abstinance is NOT cool
Someone tried to rope me into a discussion last week in regards to politics and politicians in general. I don't think that it is really anyone else's business who I vote for, but having said that, I have no problem telling you that I'm a card carrying capital C Conservative and I think that Stephen Harper would do a helluva better job running Canada than Mr. Dithers, I mean Paul Martin.

Now, when it comes to US politics, I probably know as much about the US as I do about Canada because it's just always on TV. And I happen to like the US for many reasons - not the least of which is the fact that no one is going to attack Canada because of our geographical location. Were we to be an island in the middle of the ocean, we would not have the freedoms that we have now because someone would have invaded and taken over (the fact that it would probably have been the US is neither here nor there).

Anyways.. back on point. I like George W. Bush. I like him mostly for the way he seems more normal than most politicians. He uses words like 'folks' and 'guys' and he laughs at himself and he wears jeans because he likes to and not because a PR guy says it makes him look like one of the people.

Someone slammed him the other day, which is fine, I could care less... but then they did the "right? right? am I right?" kind of thing to me... they made some sort of assumption that I thought like them. All I said was "well I like Bush". To which they replied "oh, well we're gonna fight then"... umm yeah, ok. I just shook my head and said, "no. we're not." Because I could not care less about their politicial choices.

Until it was followed up with "well, they are all crooks, that's why I never vote."

Ok, I'm sorry, what?

People DIED so you could vote, honey. People gave their LIVES and still do to this day for the RIGHT to vote. About a hundred years ago, you couldn't even vote because you had these breasts that meant you couldn't think straight enought to vote - but people fought for YOUR RIGHT to vote.

And you throw it away.

And THEN you have the audacity... the absolute audacity... to voice even the smallest complaint about a single law or rule in our country. I'm sorry, you gave that right up when you chose not to vote.

People. I do not understand them some days.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 10:47 AM

Saturday, April 09, 2005
This Thing I Do

Every once in a while I get a thought in my head and I decide I want to do something. I want to join a gym, take a class, have a girlfriend day, whatever.... and I like the idea of doing it, so I commit to doing it.

Then the day arrives and I have 23 reason why not doing it is a better idea.

Why why why. I am generally very good at self analysis - but this one has me stumped. Ok, it doesn't have me stumped I just don't want to admit the truth. If I were seeing someone else do the same thing I'd say, 'well sure, she wants to be ambitious but really she's just lazy'. So that's my problem I guess. Laziness.

Sounds much better if I call it 'Fear of Success' or something much more un-lazy sounding.

Whatever. I'm just going to get ready and go to the Digital Photography Seminar I went and signed myself up for and be done with it.

Funny Exes

Over at Chez Miscarriage there was a v. funny little post about her ex boyfriend.

This led me to thinking about my exes. There have not been many - which you would think would be a good thing, right? Well, there were plenty of guys that I had a crush on, or went on one date with - but I was the one-date-queen I think. Either that or there's some big cosmic joke on me that every one-date guy was just humouring this emotional extroverted feeler with stalking tendancies.

Anyways, it has happened in the past that I've non-chalantly said "yeah, it's like this guy I dated..." and I pause because suddenly I realize that one date does not equal 'dated' any more than kissed means 'was begged for my hand in marriage'... and during that pause I feel like a huge honking liar and it causes me to lose my train of thought.

Anyways, I have no funny ex stories to share. Other than my ex-husband got his Journeyman Electrician's ticket this past week. I had a mixed reaction. Outwardly I said "that's great!" and was partly happy for him. Inside I thought "great, now you can buy more crack".


I have a book addiction.

(I want to say 'what crack is to my ex, books are to me', but that's just mean.)

I love my books - they make me feel warm and fuzzy. I just bought a great one: Stein on Writing. The caption says "A master editor of some of the most successful writers of our centruy shares his craft techniques and strategies." What I really like is that it brings together non fiction and fiction and shows techniques for both.

I try read one fiction and one non fiction book because I write non fiction and I want to write fiction. So I study and research.

Recently I finished The Solace Of Leaving Early by Haven Kimmel and although I sometimes got a little railroaded by the religious text references, I adored her writing. I loved her characters which were thoroughly explained through showing and rarely telling. I'd highly recommend it.

I wanted to start another fiction book right away, actually, but I'm very impatiently awaiting my pre-purchased copy of gods in Alabama by the wonderful Joshilyn Jackson. Because if there is one thing I hate it's feeling bad for the book I'm putting down so that I can read a better one. I am also waiting for a Shirley Jump book to arrive and I don't want them competing for my brain space. It's limited you know.

OH! I could go to the library RIGHT NOW and get some books on tape for my road trip! (From April 13 - 16th I'll be driving from Chicago back to Calgary and while I hear the Dakotas are beautiful, I know that Saskatchewan is NOT.)

By the way. In the last week, I've given my blog addy to my boyfriend and my father. For some reason this makes me feel like I should blog more. Whatever. Works for me.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 10:42 AM

Friday, April 08, 2005
I Miss Him

I remember back when I was a new mom. I had this ferver of mom-ness about me. I loved my son and wanted to be with him always. He was the new me. I breathed his breath and I cried his tears. There were nights I could not sleep unless he was next to me. I cannot explain to someone who doesn't have children what that is like.

There was a completedness that I felt. As if everything in my life had come full circle.

Other things in my life were not nearly as satisfactory and somewhere around a year and a half I became a single mom. Sometimes things were tougher than I could handle and I blanched at my own need to sometimes be alone. I craved some time to myself to deal with self issues. To cry my own tears. Luckily I got that opportunity every once in a while when my mom would take my son for a few hours. I was still unable to sleep without him near, if only in the next room.

I remember vividly the first night he stayed at his dad's house. I hardly slept. I felt as though the house had been emptied of everything good. I didn't even want to stay in it; but I did. Now I'm more used to the idea of him staying at Grammas or at his dad's.

Used to it. But still not good with it.

I like it for a few minutes. A few moments of time where I can pick up all clothes and half eaten toast carcasses and Ninja Turtles without finding a mess where I just was. Then suddenly it's all clean. And I'm a mess.

Tonight is no different than last night. I have some writing to do, I've cleaned the house a bit, I've had a tea. The only difference is that he is not sleeping in his bed tonight. He's not here. And for whatever reason, I feel lost. I feel incomplete. I feel like I'm missing an organ - the one responsible for feeling and hope.

Every day is like opening a present. That's why it's called the present. You've heard that one before, right? Someone deeper than me said it. But each day I think of what I can learn from my son, what I can see him do that he didn't do before. Today he mastered 'sure'. As in, "that motorcycle was sure going fast, mommy!" and "I sure like my Mr. Increb-i-bles movie!"

But at the end of the day, when he is not here, I feel as thought that present has been wasted. I feel as though it's been given away to someone else.

And I miss him.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 9:56 PM

Wednesday, April 06, 2005
Regaining Energy

Both my son and I are doing much better. I've been at work for three days now and am just starting to feel back on my feet. My son is still a little tired at day care, he's not quite himself. I have to admit that several times during the day I feel very tired, a little dizzy even at times. But I'm getting better.

I'm trying to eat better. Do you know how hard that is sometimes? I don't have the energy to make supper at night, nor do I have energy to make much of a lunch. What do normal people do? I'm afraid I'm going to be stuck with soup for lunch for the rest of my life while the rest of the world is eating Sundried Tomato Tuna Salad with yummy veggies.

Tonight I'm a little mellow. Those I want to talk to don't seem to have time or inclination to talk to me. I don't quite know what to do and I feel like I can't find my compass.

I should write. I want to.

Mostly I want to want to write right now. I have to admit to wanting to drink a pop and watch Lost. And going to bed early. That's probably the smart thing to do.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 9:00 PM

Sunday, April 03, 2005
Hello? Land of the Living?

Oh my. What a week. A week from you-know-where.

It started with M. being sick. He was feverish, had a chest cold, throwing up, other bodily functions I won't go into detail here. So that kept him home Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. At night his fever wouldn't go below 40C or 104F during the day he's lethargic, muted, and just not himself. But by Wednesday night I thought he was healthy enough to go to day care. So I could go to work - because as much as my "week off" had been legit, it had not been fun.

Children's Hospital visits: 2
Clinic visits: 1
Bad Mother Thought of how much more fun work would be than staying home with my sick child: Countless

That's when my back started to ache... and was that a head ache? And was my neck hurting too?

Oh. My. Goodness.

Around 2 am I thought I'd rather die. It was horrible. I cannot remember feeling so sick EVER. It hurt to move, it hurt to sit still. I very literally could not sit up without thinking I was going to throw up, nor could I walk from my bed to the couch without very nearly passing out. Standing was also an issue. I needed water and it took me a while to get there. My kitchen is maybe 15 steps from my bedroom and I had to lay down on the tile floor half way there.

In the morning I begged my mother to come over and take my son to day care, which she did because she rocks. She also kept him for the next two days while I laid in agony in my bed. On Friday they kept him home from day care because his fever was high again. But her husband picked me up and the three of us went to the hospital together.

First thing out of the triage nurse's mouth? Boy, mom, you look rough.

Thanks, I so needed that. But I was in rough shape. I was just there to see if my kid was ok, for the most part he played on the floor with the train and I laid on the bed while we waited for the doctor.

Anyways, it's now Sunday night. I feel much better, though I get a pounding headache every single time I stand, my throat is not working like a throat should, doing things like swallowing and such....

M..... is still having fevers of 104 every night. We have a doctor's appointment on Monday afternoon - I'm dreading telling my boss that after missing a week of work, I need another half day. I mostly hate the fact that I have no choice, on a normal week I could bribe mom or her husband to take him, but they are very busy - both took time off last week to take care of him when I was sick.

Please let flu season be over.
  The Writing Mother
  posted at 6:02 PM

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