From The Pad


After a couple of years of using an iPad, I still feel guilty for not typing on a keyboard or writing out a post by hand. How silly is that?

I’m sitting in the recliner, in a good amount of pain. Whacked my back out pulling a saddle off a rack this morning. Add that to the many reasons why I dislike my job. I still remember the extreme pain that I’d have to deal with after packing up a whole shipment. Last week was a stark reminder. I’m not 25 anymore, I’m 46.

Two Years


Just under two years since I last wrote here.  Wow.  I’m wanting to commit to write more though.  With that said, I’ve come to realize and accept that I do that alot.  I start a diary, a blog, a website, a journal…..and I keep it up for a few days, maybe even a few months, and then I stop.  It’s like ‘all or nothing’, then, I feel guilty about stopping, and worse yet, when I want to start again, I have the need to start something new instead of picking up where I left off.  

I swear I had the compulsion to create yet another blog! Like that would somehow wash away all the past ones, and give me a fresh start.  I’ve always been this way.  I have so many diaries that have only 1/2 or 1/3 or 3/4 of their pages filled out.  I stop, and instead of re-starting….I start all anew.  The not so figurative ‘turning a new leaf’.  No more.  I’m doing things differently now.  I’ll march forward with this blog and keep putting my thoughts and feelings out there; for all to see….or for no one to see.  ;)

I don’t think I can do a whole catch-up of what’s happened in the past few years.  A lot, and nothing.  Same job, similar challenges…but…lots of good stuff.  Among it; a relationship with my youngest child and having my oldest child get married to a spectacular young woman, and provide me the news that I’ll be a grandmother before the end of the year.  Woot! I get to be a young grandmother.  That’s pretty cool. 

So, over the past few weeks, I’ve gone from listening to the news in when I drive, to listening to books on tape. Some have been a bust, but others have been such a pleasure to listen to.  The first one that caused me to think, and make some small adjustments in my life was Cesar Millan’s Short Guide to a Happy Dog: 98 Essential Tips and Techniques.  It was eye-opening, not just for dealings with my dog, but for myself too.  I don’t agree with everything Cesar says, but I am smart enough to realize that the guy knows what he’s talking about.  I also realize that much of what he teaches can be applied to humans, as well as dogs.  The main lesson in this book, is that the key to happiness for a dog is following a three part instruction; Exercise, Disciple & Affection.  That’s it.  Exercise your dog (or yourself), maintain discipline with your dog (or yourself) and give your (and yourself) affection.  Easy peasy. EDA.  It make sense. How much better does one feel during or after exercising? All those endorphins floating around, making you high.  How about when you’re disciplined about your life, or schedule? Not in a rigid, militaristic way (although that may work for some) but in a way that causes you to be good to yourself.  Not eating junk all the time.  Getting a good night’s sleep.  Drinking water.  Lastly, affection.  Loving yourself, being kind to yourself.  EDA.  I keep that in mind now as I go through my days, and I certainly keep it in mind when it comes to Gabby.  

The second book I listened to was Tiny Buddha, Simple Wisdom for Life’s Hard Questions by Lori Deschene.  This book, blew me away. I’ve been known *cough* *cough* to read one or two ‘self-help’ books.  I’ve searched long and hard for that epic book that would answer all my questions and cure me of all my angst.  All the ones I read so far, had left me wanting.  Without real answers.  Lori answered my questions.  In a nutshell – “Seriously, only *I* have the power to change my life”.  That simple.  She also made me realize a bunch of other things.  The biggie – which brought on the waterworks the second the realization hit my brain was this:

I felt unable to let my kids fully see that I am happy, because I felt guilty about feeling happy when they are not (in my perception).  I am always projecting unhappiness onto them that they may not be feeling; probably out of the guilt that I feel over the part that I played in having their teenage years and young adulthood not be the ideal/best one possible.  I’m always thinking that they don’t always voluntarily call me, or stay in touch with me because they hate me, or at least, don’t care about me.  I have to come to terms that THIS MAY BE TRUE.  Yes, it may be true that my kids don’t love me the same way I love them.  They may never love me the same way I love them.  They may never know the truths of my life as it relates to theirs.  


That was the realization that Lori showed me.  It’s ok for my kids to not love me like I love them.  It hurts, and that’s ok too, but their feelings for me should not dictate how I feel for them, or cast a shadow on my love for them.  Their feelings for me, should not cause me to feel guilt.  I was a far from perfect wife, but I always did what I thought best for my children. 

Coming to that realization stunned me.  Then, it liberated me.  I will no longer hesitate to call either one of the boys out of fear that they won’t answer the phone.  Or won’t return my call.  I’ll call them when I want, and I’ll tell them I love them and they can do with that what they wish. They’re grown men now.  I can’t dictate their feelings.  

So, there we go.  



End of an Era


Graduation came and went without any incident.  It was actually rather anti-climactic.  I had so made peace with myself, that I barely noticed the ex and his tribe, and I enjoyed the Graduation tremendously.  The only downside, was that it was so packed afterwards, that I wasn’t able to find Jake.  We ended up leaving without having seen him post-ceremony. :( 

Today, another milestone has been reached.  The very last child-support check for Bud left my bank today.  In the memo line I wrote “The End”.  I have not minded sending $515.00 every month for the last six years.  I believe firmly in the responsibility of child-support.  Raising a child is not cheap.  What did bother me every month was that ‘tie’ to him.  The knowledge that a part of me, was going to him.  That every month I had to read his name, and knew that he was reading my name.  Having to let him come into my mind for a few brief minutes every month.  No more.  I can delete his name from my my ‘Bills to Pay’ section on my bank site.  I am now free to go for as long as I want without letting him enter my brain at all.  I LOVE that. 

So, chapter closed.

My son’s a graduate of S. Carroll High School, and now a student at St. Andrews University in N. Carolina.  I am so proud of him, and so proud of his accomplishments.  He’s come such a long way in the last year; from the raging anger and darkness, to being a smiling and loving son.  I regret all those years we lost, but I’m so happy for where we are today. 



I look forward to continuing to watch him develop into the amazing man I know he’s bound to become.



48 Hours


That’s roughly the amount of time left before Jake’s graduation.  What should be an amazingly happy day, is causing me off-the-charts amounts of stress.  While there’s no guarantee that this will happen, if it does, it will be the first time that I see my ex-husband and his family in almost 6 years.  Time has in no way diminished the anger that I have/hold towards them.  All the wise voices in my world tell me to ‘let go’ ‘forgive’ ‘forget’, etc. Fuck that.  I don’t want to forgive, I don’t want to forget and I don’t want to let go.  I want the following conversation to take place:

Them – “Natasha, we are so sorry that we caused such hell for Danny at the most vulnerable time in his life.  We are so sorry that we turned our backs on a teenager that up until the summer of 2006 we had treated as though he was our own family.  We’re sorry that we caused him to spiral into a hole of anger and despair that robbed him of what should have been the happiest and best years of his life.  We’re sorry that we fucked you over and took your grand-mother’s inheritance and left you with nothing financially. We’re sorry that we used our financial advantage to screw you into a complete financial disadvantage.”


Them – “Yeah, we deserve that”.

THAT’S what I want.  I’m not going to get it, but that’s what I want.  The thought of my eyes landing on my ex, or any member of his family fills me we rage.

I do my best to focus on the fact that I now have a life that I’ve always wanted to have.  I now have a life that I never would have had if the ex and I had stayed together.  Because of all the horrible things that happened, I now have an amazing life.  Danny, while he wishes he would have had different choices to make, has become this brilliant young man with whom I have an awesome relationship, and Jake is on track to starting a really good new life in a few months that will put him on the path of making a great future for himself.  We’re good.  We’re healthy.  We’re happy.  We have love, we have laughter we have happiness. 

Yet, I still can’t shake the anger and frankly, the hatred.  It’s such a powerful emotion.  

48 hours, and then I’m done. 

I’ll get through it.  I’ll have my partner and best friend by my side, and I’ll get through it.

Here’s a poem (that I may have posted already, because I love it and recently was introduced to it) that makes me feel good.

God Says Yes To Me

by Kaylin Haught

<!– (from The Palm of Your Hand)

I asked God if it was okay to be melodramatic

 and she said yes

I asked her if it was okay to be short

and she said it sure is

I asked her if I could wear nail polish

or not wear nail polish

and she said honey

she calls me that sometimes

she said you can do just exactly

what you want to

Thanks God I said

 And is it even okay if I don’t paragraph

 my letters

 Sweetcakes God said

who knows where she picked that up

what I’m telling you is

Yes Yes Yes

 I’m going to be who I am, and that’s all I can do. 

Day of the Dead


That’s what it feels like at work today.  Phone has rung a grand total of 3 times since this morning, and it’s already lunchtime.  What the heck? I always get freaked out when the phone’s not busy, and when my volume of emails drops.  Literally freaked out I get.  Like “I won’t have a job tomorrow if the phone doesn’t ring” kind of freaked.  It’s not much fun to feel this way, and the stress of feeling like this exhausts me, which causes me to recreate being a zombie when I get home from work at night.  I like thinking of being a zombie better than thinking about how I am more akin to a couch potoatoe when I’m tired from stress.  At least zombies have some personality.  Right?

The positive about today, is that I have a freakin’ awesome station playing on Pandora.  It’s my Nina Simone station, but today I’ve heard some kick-ass music from:

Etta James, Aaron Neville, Stevie Ray Vaughn, Louis Armstrong,  Dinah Washington, BB King and Connie Evingson among others.  Nothing like good music to keep the spirits up in a non-phone-ringing time.

Paul told me that my mom asked him the other morning why I was so stressed out all the time.  It really bothered me, because I didn’t think I had been ‘stressed out all the time’, but thinking back at my demeanour and behaviour lately, I can see why she’d think that.  This past weekend was stressful, especially Saturday when Jake came over.  I feel like I walk on eggshells afraid that our newly established relationship (granted it’s been almost a year) will fall apart if I say or do the wrong thing.  Reflecting on it, I realize that I cannot move forward in any relationship with this frame of mind.  I can’t be scared of the ‘what ifs’ and I can’t be scared to be who I am out of fear of losing anyone.  Love me for who I am, or don’t.  The constant fight with trying to be someone for everyone else has gotten better, but it is still a tough road at times.

A few weeks shy from being 18. Just yesterday, he was my cuddly little boy. Sigh. Love you Jake-man.


Random Musings


I was listening to NPR this morning, and they did an interview with a singer (and I can’t for the life of me remember his name right now).  Apparently, before being who he is today (a very cool band!) he was pretty thrashy, metal.  He was thrashy metal because he didn’t like who he was.  He ‘shed his skin’ so to speak, to reveal who he really was, who he wanted to be, and that’s the musician he is today.  I could really relate to the sentiment.  Who I am today, is nowhere near who I was even 10 years ago, let alone 20 years ago.  I think I stopped being who I wanted to be when I left home at 18…maybe I stopped being who I was before that.   All I know is that I spent most of my life not being who I was inside.  Looking back now, it feels as though I lived my life in the 3rd person.  I’m an outsider, comfortable in my own skin, looking at a girl, a woman who was so full of anger and pain.  She was so destructive; to herself and others.  She wreaked havoc with people’s emotions, she destroyed her own self-confidence, her own essence.  She trampled on trust, she spit on love, she ripped up friendships. 

I can pinpoint exactly the moment when I began leaving that person behind, shedding that skin, and becoming my present me.  It was a weekday afternoon sometime in November of 2006.  I was talking to a friend (now, my husband) on the phone and I bared my soul to him.  I told him who I really was, I told him my deepest, darkest, ugliest secrets.  He listened to me, he soothed me as I cried, as I raged.  I don’t remember what he said to me after I was empty, but I do remember that I felt as though this immense weight had been lifted from me, and I began to feel as though there was hope; there was light; there was goodness. 

Almost 6 years later, this same wonderful man still reminds me of who I really am.  I love him so. 

I am happy with the person who looks back at me in the mirror.  I’m happy with the direction my life has taken. 

I guess the musings weren’t so random….



“God Says Yes To Me” Kaylin Haught

I asked God if it was okay to be melodramatic and she said yes I asked her if it was okay to be short and she said it sure is I asked her if I could wear nail polish or not wear nail polish and she said honey she calls me that sometimes she said you can do just exactly what you want to Thanks God I said And is it even okay if I don’t paragraph my letters Sweetcakes God said who knows where she picked that up what I’m telling you is Yes Yes Yes