It Aint for Pu**ies

Sometimes, God, or the Universe, or whatever term you prefer, gives us the exactly right people in our lives. I have many people in my life I know for sure were sent to me purposefully, One of those people is my bestie, Paula.

We have been best friends for over 20 years, and I cherish our friendship more every year. The following is an actual text conversation we had recently that captures our friendship perfectly.

Paula:  Can”t talk, still on this bus.

Me: Ok call when you can. I would have responded to your Snapchat, but my hair is currently in the kitchen sink lol.

Paula: That’s funny! (laughing emoji)

Me: What’s funny is it is soaking in my “conditioner” which you know as Downy.

Paula: That is funny! That’s ok, I soak my teeth in what can also be used to clean toilets, vases, and water bottles lol.

Me: We were destined to be friends! I bought lavender scented this time. Maybe it will make me calmer?

P: Lol. I doubt it.

M: Me too lol

P: That would be ganja scented.

M: How awesome would that be??!!

P: LMAO I really like that wig.

M: Me too!

P: I may have to get my hair cut like it.

M: Or lose it all and buy a wig!

P: Or buy a wig!

P: Fake hair, fake vision, fake teeth, and the piece de resistance……Fake boobs! Add a cup bra!

M: Getting old is hell man. It ain’t for pu**ies.

P: Oh no. Not at all!

M: I feel like I should blog this entire conversation.

P: Lmao. As long as you drink a glass of wine while you do it.

M: I wasn’t aware there was any other way to blog?

P: Just double checking.

 

Seriously, is there another way to blog?

 

 

 

Cosmicness

I first realized I am gay when I was 18 years old. Up until that point, I had always had “best friends” who I would become completely obsessed with, and wanted to spend all of my time with. I would become insanely jealous if my “best friend” wanted to spend time with anyone else, and eventually I would suffocate her until our friendship ended. This scenario repeated itself several times throughout high school, and somehow I never thought it meant anything. I assumed that everyone went through the same thing with their “best friends”.

Until this time, I didn’t really know many gay people. I knew one, actually. He was a good friend, but he was a boy, and although I knew what the term lesbian meant, I certainly had never met any women who admitted to being gay. This was the 1980s, and times were much different. Being “out” could mean being disowned, institutionalized, or even killed.

After high school, I took my first full time job in a nursing home. I enjoyed my job, and the people I worked with. One girl in particular. Her name was “B” and from the first day I met her, I wanted her to be my “best friend”. She was amazing. She was funny, and smart, and really good at her job. I remember thinking how obvious it was that for her, this wasn’t just a job, she really genuinely cared for the elderly residents we cared for.

She was also brutally honest, and shortly after I met her, she told me that she is gay. I remember being really curious about her life, and relationships, and having a thousand questions that I was far too shy to ask. I wanted to be around her all the time, and I was, until one day she told me that she had gotten her girlfriend a job with us and she would be starting to work with us the next night.

As upsetting as it was to be pushed to the sidelines, I will never forget watching her with “M” her girlfriend. She was so thoughtful, so attentive, making sure to think ahead, to meet every need “M” may have, before she even had them. As jealous as I was, I remember thinking I wanted someone to care about me as much as B cared for M.

Despite my jealousy, I really liked M. She was a really nice girl, and soon we were all hanging out together outside of work. Honestly, I probably would have even if I didn’t like M, I wanted to be around B enough that it wouldn’t have mattered. We started going together to a local gay bar that was known not to card people. I remember the first time I went there, I wanted to feel awkward. I wanted to feel out of place, like I didn’t belong. I wanted to feel uncomfortable seeing people of the same sex kissing, but I didn’t. It felt normal. It felt right.

One night at the bar, B and M had a fight. I don’t remember what they were fighting about, I don’t even remember if it was a big fight. I do remember that B went to the bathroom, and I followed her. In the bathroom, I sat on the sink while B paced back and forth, fuming over her argument. She stopped in front of me, and looked at me with the most adorable smile I have ever seen, and said “I’m going to kiss you.” I think I said ok? I don’t know. All I know is she kissed me, and when she did, a light bulb went off for me. I knew why I didn’t feel the way my friends did about boys, although I had had a couple of boyfriends in high school. Kissing them made me nervous and uncomfortable. Kissing B made me incredibly happy.

There was one more kiss, shortly after that, at B’s house, and then she eventually told M that she had kissed me. The fallout was devastating to me, I literally had no friends at work anymore, and I eventually quit my job.

What came next is another story, or many other stories, for another time. For now, let’s fast forward 30 years. I have been married for 20 years to a man, divorced, given birth to six beautiful children, and buried one. I have been engaged to a woman who left me for her ex shortly before we were supposed to get married, and the downward spiral my life took after that led me to move from my home in Maryland back to New Jersey. I thought my life was over. I found a job that I really love, I have my youngest son with me, and I told myself that at my age, that is enough. I was over dating, and over love.

A co worker talked me into reactivating my POF account, and I did, not really knowing why. One night I received a message, which isn’t unusual, when you are on POF you get lots of messages, but this one stood out for some reason enough to make me want to respond. We messaged for 20 minutes or so, and then said goodbye. Hours later, my heart literally skipped a beat. It was B. I don’t know exactly how I knew, but I knew. I think it was the smile. I didn’t know how to begin to tell her, so when after a week of texting she asked me to meet her at a local bar, I was determined I was never going to tell her who I am. However, alcohol acts like a truth serum sometimes, and after a beer, I I told her. Thankfully, she took the news well, and talked for hours about the “cosmicness” of the whole thing. She told me she had a picture of me, from the bar back then. She sent it to me when she went home that night.

That night was six weeks ago. Since then I have literally spent every free moment with B. The amount of things we have in common is amazing. Her kind and caring heart astounds me every day, and her ability to calm me, even in the middle of a full blown panic attack is something I have never known before.

I don’t know where this will go, or how long it will last, but today I am happy. Happier than I have been in years, and so incredibly grateful. I am grateful for the events in my life that led me here, I am grateful to B, for being quite honestly, the wold’s greatest girlfriend, and I am grateful to fate, or as I now prefer to call it, cosmicness.

Betty and Jenn 198720170531_144430

Ghost Story

You tell me you watch ghost stories alone in the dark

When I tell you I can’t do that, you tell me ghosts aren’t real.

I laugh, because I don’t know how to tell you how wrong you are.

My ghosts don’t roam empty corridors, or hide behind doors that no one dares to open.

My ghosts inhabit my body.

They roam the corridors of my mind,

and hide behind the door of my heart,

that no one dares to open.

Panic is a phantom that dwells in me, sometimes for months at a time.

Anxiety an angry specter leaving my extremities numb and shaking,

my heart racing,

and the people I love alienated.

Baby, to be with me is to inhabit the haunted mansion that no one will go near.

It can be a hopeless place,

with a thick black shroud of depression blocking out any hope of light.

But today,

when you held me in your arms, you made all the light come back.

You told me I am amazing,

and my hands shook,

and my heart raced,

not from panic, but anticipation,

and today,

for once,

the ghosts were silent.

Forgiveness

Day 3: Something you have to forgive yourself for………….

I have this vision of how my life should be.  I guess I have always had it.

My children always happy, never fighting with me.  Me, always patient, always understanding.  I handle the most difficult of situations with a smile, confidently moving briskly to the perfect solution.

My personal relationship, of course is one to be envied.  It is completely equal, and nurturing.  I never play those awful games that some people play.  That wanting the person to be closer, until the second they ARE closer, then pushing them away.  How gross!  How immature.  How WRONG!

I have a perfect career, where my talents are put to use, my ideas and opinions are valued, and my skills are challenged and honed daily.

Of course, eventually I have to wake up.  And while I know logically that no one actually has a perfect life, mine falls so far from the mark that it is completely off the grid.  And, sadly, there is no one to blame but myself.  And I do.  Well.  And often.

So, that is what I need to forgive myself for.  All of the choices I made, and decisions I allowed people to make for me, that made me who I am today.  My kids fight with me all the time.  My house looks like Tina Turner’s hair most days.  I have no personal relationship.  I have no career, I have a job, and not a very good one at that.

On good days, I tell myself that I can still change any or all of these things.  I can build better relationships with my kids, establish a loving, caring personal relationship, get a better job.  The question is, if I don’t do these things, can I forgive myself enough to be truly happy with the life I have?

I believe

I believe:
– We each are responsible for our own happiness, and that no one can make someone else happy.
– I was born to be a mother.
– We can learn a lot of valuable lessons from hard or painful situations.
– The most important things in life can not be bought, and have nothing to do with money.
– There is good in everyone.
– True beauty is found on the inside, not the outside of a person.
– I am a lot stronger than most people give me credit for.
– It is vitally important to laugh every day.
– That sometimes smart people make stupid choices.
– Mistakes are a part of living.
– When we know better, we do better.
– Starbucks coffee, when combined with best friends, has healing properties.
– Love never makes people sad.
– Tears are not a sign of weakness, but they do make you stronger.
– Some of the most unexpected events can bring life’s biggest blessings.
– Age is nothing but a number.
– Wisdom comes with maturity.
– If you don’t take control of your life, you are a spectator, not a participant, in life.

What is going on here?

This is gonna be another one of my soapbox posts. Let me say first, that I admit I don’t know a lot about politics. I do not have a college degree. I am well aware that I am not in any way qualified to make or change laws. I understand that, and I get that, I really do.

Still, I know the difference between right and wrong.

Last month, there was a bill passed in Utah, called The Criminal Homicide and Abortion Amendment. This bill makes it possible to charge women with murder for a miscarriage caused by “intentional or knowing” acts. Really?

Fist of all, I was not aware that in Utah abortion is only legal if there was rape or incest, if the mother’s life is in danger, or if the child will be born with “grave birth defects”. Apparently, each state is allowed to determine when abortion is legal.

This bill came into being because a 17 year old girl who was 7 months pregnant paid a friend 150 dollars to beat her up to cause a miscarriage. Her boyfriend had threatened to leave her if she didn’t terminate her pregnancy. The baby survived the beating, and was adopted.

Clearly, this was a horrible thing to do. I am not at all suggesting that I support this in any way. I agree that there should be some type of consequence for these actions. Criminalizing miscarriages, however, is not the proper consequence.

Imagine a woman married to a man who physically abuses her. For whatever reason, she stays with him, and becomes pregnant. Eventually, he beats her so badly she miscarries her baby. Is she a murderer? By staying with her abuser, she committed an “intentional and knowing” act. Do you want to see her sent to prison? That would be ridiculous. Isn’t that where this bill leads though?

This is what I think. The abortion debate has raged for years, and the decision to have an abortion is a personal one that I believe is ultimately the woman’s decision, as she is the one who will ultimately have to live with the consequences of her decision. To label a woman a murderess because of that decision, will help no one.

A Bad Mommy Day

Today was a bad mommy day.

My usually sweet, sensitive, caring Bug got in trouble in school today. Apparently, my 8 year old Mr. Sensitive called a little girl in his class a “fat slob”.

Oh. My. Hell.

Where to begin listing my problems with this? There is the fact that I make a very conscious effort to raise my children to be sensitive to others feelings, and until today, thought I had done the best with Bug. He really is an amazing kid most of the time. This is the child who, just 2 days ago made everyone in our house sign a peace treaty, promising not to yell or fight with anyone. He is always the most verbal when I ask how he feels about something. Actually, he is usually the only one that doesn’t run away when I ask about feelings.

Bug is, by far the most sensitive of all of my children, the most like me, and someone saying that to him would devastate him. He has been known to get teary eyed because of a dirty look. Honestly, I cannot imagine those words coming out of his mouth.

I have had a weight problem my entire life, a battle that has led to food disorders, body image issues, diet pill abuse, and terminally low self esteem. I have always tried to convey to my children how badly words like fat can hurt, how the damage done by those words never goes away completely. Coupled with the recent case of a sweet young girl killing herself because of the torment of constant bullying by classmates. No, I don’t think that this is on the same level, but could it be the beginning? I know that words hurt, and wounds from words don’t heal. It breaks my heart that my son has done that to another person.

So, as a punishment, Bug wrote a letter of apology. He told her he was sorry, that he thought he was joking. I felt better after he wrote the letter, and after a LONG talk from me. I thought we made headway, thought I had demonstrated good parenting. As I sat to write this, a disagreement escalated between Bug and his sister. As I listened, my hand frozen above my keyboard, I heard it. He called his sister a fat pig. It is definitely a bad mommy day.