living out loud

NF, no focus.

This blog entry has no focus. That’s your warning. It is rated NF, no focus.

Winter is taking forever to end. We are almost mid-way into February, and winter feels like it will never ever end. Though I will note February feels a lot better than January.

I’m not a big fan of February. It’s my birthday month, but it holds bad memories for me – my dad died in February 2001, and ever since then February just feels bad. Nothing good ever happens in February (is what I say). Ironically, it’s my birthday month, and so I should be absolutely ecstatic about it being here because, historically, I have always love love loooooved my birthday. Like, my actual birthday is February 23 and I don’t really have any shame about demanding people begin celebrating this day 6 days before the 23rd and not stop until 5 days after. The Twelve Days of Amy’s Birthday. (On the first day of Amy’s birthday, her true love sent to her….money to pay off her credit card.)

On a different note, Rob Brezny (my favorite hippie astrologer) told me this the other day:

The Leaning Tower of Pisa is eight stories high, including its belfry, and tilts sideways at a four-degree angle. When builders started construction back in 1173, they laid a weak foundation in unstable soil, and the building has never stood straight since then. And yet it is the most lucrative tourist attraction in the city of Pisa, and one of the top ten in Italy. Its flaw is the source of its fame and glory. What’s the equivalent in your world, Pisces? Now is a favorable time to take new or extra advantage of something you consider imperfect or blemished.

Here’s the problem, Rob: What ISN’T imperfect or blemished?? So much to choose from, so little time. I’m going to think about this a bit, though, and I’ll be back later this week to let you know if I found something imperfect or blemished I can take new or extra advantage of. I’m pretty sure my belfry leans at least four degrees, though.

I miss my dad, you guys. All of the days but most terribly in February. This February is particularly bad, I think because of my life situation and financial stress. My dad was a rescuer; he’d have rescued me in whatever way he could…for example, I bet he’d have taken Miss M and me out for weekend lunches, after school dinners, and paid a bill once in awhile. Definitely, we’d have sat in restaurants or at his house, and I’d have to had to listen to long long looooooooooooooong financial responsibility lectures. Which, if he’s around anywhere – and I think that he is, this is probably driving him so nuts that he can’t lecture me and take care of us. Yet I’m also acutely aware that this is a good life lesson for me. ….And it’s probably about time I start learning to rescue myself anyway.

You know who rescued herself today? Little Miss M. She’s had a loose tooth that has bothered her for about 2 weeks now. Early this afternoon, she came to me and said, “I can’t TAKE it anymore!!! I NEED this tooth OUT!!!! I’m going to pull it.” I said go for it, and she ripped off a bit of paper towel, took a very deep breath, pushed down her low tolerance for pain, disappeared into our bathroom, and then came running out about 10 minutes later screaming, “OH MY GOD!!! MOMMY!!! OH MY GOD!!!!! I DID IT!!!! I grabbed it and I pulled it and it just….POPPED OUT!!!!! OH MY GOD!!!!!!”

I mean, it was like she’d put a bet on the winning Super Bowl team and was $100 million richer or whatever.

I love how much bravery she showed, because it came from I don’t know where. I mean, for real, reader/s – not 2 hours before this I’d accidentally scraped the back of her ankle with the fridge door…no blood, just a little scraped skin, and you’d have thought I’d stabbed her Achilles heel repeatedly with my sharpest butcher knife. But I also love what happened because the life metaphor was not lost on me: swallow your fears, take a deep breath, and just…PULL.

Because I will share with you that, this morning, I was in tears (yes, yes, yes…AGAIN) and longing for my old life. At this time last year, I wasn’t happy at all. But I was safe. I was in a house with spicy colors I loved, and nobody had a barky bulldog running around the ceiling above me at all hours. And I didn’t have to lie in bed at 11 PM, listening to the baritone of the man next door talk about…whatever men with baritone voices talk about in bed at 11 PM on a work night. I had two incomes. I had a back porch I loved to sit on so I could look at the wooded area behind us, listen to birds and whatever other wildlife would have been alive and awake in the dead of a Georgia winter, in February. I miss all of it so deeply, I cannot even really describe it. It’s a feeling like my soul had kind of tiny part of it ripped out and placed in the memory part of my brain – it’s still a part of me and will be forever, but it’s not in the right place. (This was also how sad I was when I dropped some clothes off one night a few weeks ago, wandered upstairs because it’s the one part of the house C hasn’t altered greatly, and was shocked to see all of me had been taken down from the picture walls. Our wedding pictures, which I’d expected at some point, but also pictures of us as a family – me pregnant with M, and other happy times. Memories are hard for me to let go of. Very, very hard.)

I am out of sorts (do you think that will ever end? I keep waiting for this out of sorts feeling to pass, to stop and go away, but it just seems to have set down its bags, taken a seat, kicked its heels up on the coffee table, and requested a nice tall glass of sweet tea and appears to be waiting for me to set out some towels and offer it the guest bedroom). So I like it when things like this morning happen, when at least one person in my tiny household builds up her self-confidence and bravery; when at least one person in this place does something really big and very brave. (At this point, I know some of you are going: well, Amy, leaving your house and striking out on your own last summer was really big and very brave…but I dunno y’all. It doesn’t feel like it yet, really. I am too nostalgic, and miss my old life – the parts that I loved a lot at least – too much still. And I am lonely. And my house is a nuclear disaster zone when Miss M is with me. And I can barely wash/dry/fold a load of laundry these days…just like when I was living with C, except now only I’m annoyed with my inability to focus and complete a task.)

At any rate. That was our exciting moment today. I’m raising a little girl Braveheart. A Xena Warrior Princess who’s obsessed with make up and in crush with some YouTube star named Ryan Higa. Then, later, I hopped on Google to research something like “how to grow a backbone” and I found THIS:


I know *I* don’t google what to do when I hate my mom (my mom is taking Miss M and me to DisneyWorld in April, all expenses paid, and so officially my mom ought to get to choose the next US President) (hahaha!!! I’m totally kidding – you don’t want my mom to pick the next US President, I promise. She’ll absolutely choose Donald Trump) (love you, mom!). Later, Miss M came to me, tears in her eyes, and apologized: “It was me, mama. I’m so so sorry! I didn’t mean to put that in there, but you told me no more chocolate cake and I was SO mad at you!! I just wanted to know how to fix my mad.”

How can you not forgive THAT pleading apology? Especially when it’s coming from someone with a big, cute new gap in her gums. (Plus also, this find gave me my first big laugh of the day, and I so needed to laugh.)

Other things in my brain right now:

My gratitude jar has been neglected. I haven’t added any notes of gratitude to it since, oh…mid-January? Gratitude is so elusive when consumed with life’s complexities.

Would you please send prayers and/or positive vibes that a certain school in Georgia will be allowed to keep an ESOL teacher point for next school year? I can’t go into more details than that, but if you’ll beg the Universe with and for me, I will be eternally most grateful to you. Like, I’ll write your name on a piece of paper and stick it in my gratitude jar, and sometimes I will take it out and kiss it and send you major blessings.

My floor needs a deep cleaning. This is literal, not a metaphor. I’ve lived here since June, and I’ve vacuumed and swept a lot but have never run a Swiffer or anything over the floors. And my dust situation is dire. Also not a metaphor. This is when not living with C is helpful. I am the only one annoyed with myself about the situation. But still not annoyed enough to actually address it.

I have been very very very tired. Since late December. Why am I so tired? I am tired of being tired.

And last (but not least): if you saw my video vlogs, they are all gone. Sorry if you missed out on THAT mess. I think if that mess will clear up, a lot of my other messes will naturally clear up as well. And then maybe I can locate the girl who wrote THIS last year at this time. She was such a mess, but nothing like the one typing this post.

If I can get my floors mopped and my furniture dusted by next weekend, though, I think I’ll feel like I’ve taken a step toward…something.miss-m-tooth

Toothless warrior princess.