Thursday, January 30, 2014

Soul Crushing Humiliation....Please Help!

Today has been about as humiliating and soul crushing as any day I have had in awhile. You think I jest? Today I was made aware that my income (which is social security survivors benefits) has been cut by $700/month starting February 3rd! Why? Because the government can't handle paperwork and because they are so full of red tape and BS...that even their own workers know it.

So the story goes....Z turned 18 the 20th of this month and when a surviving child on social security that is not disabled turns 18, that means they no longer receive benefits UNLESS they are still in high school. Z is. In November after hearing nothing from SS I contacted them to ask them what I needed to do to ensure Z did not lose his benefits until May. They said "nothing." I knew that wasn't right but after speaking to several people...they told me that if they needed anything from us that they would have sent it to me already. I also took that moment to ask if Z's money would then be divided between David and I (this is the way it has been done in the one child falls off their money is divided between the other survivors). I was told it would be. Fine. My bases were covered.

Then the last of December I received paperwork from SS saying that I needed to have the enclosed verification paperwork filled out by the school. The first day back after break it was filled out and mailed. Today I find out that Z is being cut off as of I call. Apparently they have lost the paperwork but I can have knew paperwork filled out and send it back in. All should be back on track then within 60 days....after of course I payback my overpayment to SS. WHAT overpayment I heard myself ask in a shrill voice. And this is what I was told:

Currently the boys and I all receive the same sum monthly. We will say $500/month each or $1500 total. We live on that total amount. Since Z is no longer or at least temporarily not receiving his....then David and I will each receive not $750 each but $600 each which totals $1200. So obviously we won't be having Z's money divided between us. We get a much lesser amount ($700/mo lesser to be precise). However, the real kicker is this....when Z's money is reinstated, before he can receive it, I must pay back the extra $100/person/month that David and I receive in Z's money's absence because that is considered "overpayment" of what we should be getting....but aren't! How am I suppose to pay back money when it is not even enough to live on???? The guy told me he knew it made no was the government. I would have laughed if it had not been so tragic for mine and my children's livelihood.

After getting off the phone and realizing that between past due medical bills (mine), bills that I just haven't had enough money to pay and past debt, I was royally screwed. I can't work....remember....I am unemployable....I can't pay my bills and now my income is being cut even further. I just wanted to throw in the towel. I have always been able to stay afloat....if not actually swim, but today I realized that I was sinking fast with no life jacket in sight. Then I remembered someone awhile back telling me to go to At the time I never imagined myself doing this. The person suggesting it told me at the time to lay it all out there, be honest with my need and see if others wanted to help. Absolutely NOT! screamed what was left of my pride. So I baked cheesecakes morning, noon and night and made almost enough to cover Davids upcoming out of pocket physical therapy. Of course I had no idea what the future had in store. Today I realized, after spending the morning checking out job sites, grants and a multitude of other places.......that I was pretty much at the end of my rope. My pride had hit rock bottom and I went back and gave gofundme another look.

So here it is. This is me feeling like a failure and being emotionally raw and completely exhausted after trying to take care of everyone and making everything work for everyone by myself for years. I guess I just can't anymore...maybe I never could. The worry alone is taking a toll on my health and since cheesecakes alone aren't going to pay the bills....this is where I stand. I am embarrassed and humiliated and is soul crushing asking for help. I can only imagine my mother turning in her grave at all of this. All I can hope is that at the end of this shame filled storm that there is a rainbow overflowing with amazing life lessons. It is all that is getting me through as I write this. I am also assuming that I will be spending the rest of my life doing community service and giving back. Perhaps that is one of the lessons!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

My Passive Aggressive Whinefest

So most of you know by now that I have absolutely no problem speaking my mind. I do have my limits though. It does no good to speak up and speak out if 1) no one is listening and 2) no one cares. So that is when I become passive aggressive. Today's blog is me being passive aggressive and possibly a bit whiny. What can I say? It happens! is a question? Why are people so petty? Let me rephrase. Why are grown adults so petty?  I have a family member whom I would like to kick their ass and I know that I could verbally lay them flat, but to what end? This individual would not care and would ultimately be vindictive to not just me but my kids too. The whole reason I am fuming today is because this person chose my sons birthday to verbally go after me in the presence of my sons new girl friend. It was embarrassing and hurtful to my son and very embarrassing for his girl friend. But what this person didn't realize is that my son knew what was being said was not factual and this person also made an ass of himself on meeting  my sons girl friend for the first time. First impressions are hard to change. The icing on the cake was that it was said and done without provocation, with I believe the desire to hurt and it was not said in my presence. He knows better I am sure.

Some hard truths! When I was young....I was not all that nice! I was pretty self absorbed. I have spent a lot of years making amends for the behaviors of my youth. I did and still do have many short comings, but.....I would like to think that after a few years of maturity, I am not the same person I was 30 years ago. Honestly....who is? There is however a person in my life who has never let go of the past. He has reminded me of my short comings every chance he has gotten for years and to some degree rewritten history time and again. Shock of shocks.....I always come out looking pretty bad in every rewriting. What is worse is that he has alienated my kids. From a early age, with every possible chance, he has bad mouthed me to them and told them how awful I am as both a person and a parent. I have tried every avenue to fix what seems to be broken between us from apologizing for anything I ever did to hurt, upset or piss him off, to basically doing community service to him. Nothing has worked and periodically he will open fire with things like...."Every bad thing that has ever happened to you, you deserve." Is it true? Maybe, but must you announce it in a roomful of people and in front of my kids?

I had hoped that when he had a child he would realize that parenting isn't cut and dried and that there were a lot more gray areas than he had ever acknowledged or understood. After all he and his wife were literally overwhelmed at times taking care of one. I was taking care of 2 and early on 3 all by myself and apparently I was still a crappy parent. Someone said to me once after his son was born, "Awesome, now he has a kid and you can talk to his kid about him like he talked to yours about you." The bad thing about that with my kids, his kid would be the one hurt the most and I wouldn't do that to a child. I know how much it bothered and hurt my kids hearing hurtful things about their mother from another relative they were suppose to love and respect....and I simply could never do that to his child.....or any child for that matter!!!!!

Okay....I have to admit that it does hurt, but not in the way you might think. It hurts because he deliberately tried to hurt Z on his birthday and embarrass both him and his girl friend. It hurts because he doesn't realize the wedge that he has put between himself and Z. It hurts because he seems to be so unhappy that he can't allow anyone else to be happy. And it hurts because the relationship between him and I is all but non-existent now and I believe in the coming years will be completely dissolved.

Do I think I am a bad parent? No. Am I perfect and do I make mistakes even after all these years? Of course! It is part of being human. It is not his opinion of me that hurts or upsets me. I know by now that there is nothing I could ever do that will change the feelings he has about me. He has held onto past angers for years. It isn't just me. He is a man with very few past friends because of his anger. Many only tolerate him and few truly like him...which makes me sad because underneath his anger he is a really funny and likable guy, but the older he gets....the less those traits are recognizable. I think what hurts the most is that he has used my kids over the years to strike out at me. He has hurt my kids and hurt his relationship with them. Worst of all, I don't think he feels an ounce of remorse over any of it. Sigh! I am not particularly proud of passive aggressive me. I am much better at dealing with situations head on and resolving issues. takes two to fix a problem and in this case....I am working alone. I know as you all read this, that there is someone similar in every family and/or relationship. They are a mystery as to the why's and wherefores of their anger and their resulting behavior. People get hurt, divides happen and in the end....relationships are lost. It's sad for everyone involved!

So ends my January passive aggressive whinefest. Hopefully this will not be a monthly event but at any rate....thanks for letting me vent!!!!

Monday, January 20, 2014

Happy 18th

Kids are blessing and I have been blessed several times over. There is nothing that can make you happier, madder, smile, laugh, cry, more frustrated or prouder....than a child. From the moment you lay eyes on them, they capture your heart and hold it for all time to come. These are all the thoughts that have been going through my head today. I think one of the proudest and most accomplished moments though that a parent can have is when said child reaches their 18th birthday. You know that for better or worse, you have raised them. You know that they aren't somehow magically grown because they step from 17 to this milestone, but you know that for the most part....your work is done. You have seen them through colicky nights, teeth cutting, first steps, nightmares, school, mean kids, sickness, ER visits, hospital stays, puberty, bullies, learning to drive, curfews, dating and now they have arrived at the magical age that society says makes them adults. Yeah....and just who thought 18 was a good idea to start calling them adults???? I'm kidding. Sort of.

Today my next to the youngest turns 18 and while I know that he is more than ready to spread his wings and fly, I would really like to chain him to his youth for at least a couple more years. Truthfully though, if anyone was ready to fly and deserved the is my Z. For those of you that know our story, you know that Z had a picture perfect life until he was five. At five years old he became a man in so many ways. He watched his father die of a brain aneurysm while the two were home alone and in that moment he experienced something that even many adults have yet to experience. It is a day that Z still holds close to his heart but he never let it define him nor has he spent a lot of time feeling sorry for himself. Instead, he has been working on being a man for many years.

It wasn't long after his dad's death that his older brother left home and our family was cut down to three...Z, myself and my youngest son David who was born with Cerebral Palsy along with a laundry list of other issues. Even at such a young age, Z made sure that he was the best big brother he could be to David. They developed a bond that was so strong and so beautiful and often I was scolded by people for allowing Z to be so enveloped in Davids life. It was felt that I was not allowing Z a childhood and forcing him to take care of David. What people didn't realize and what I grew tired of trying to explain was, Z chose to be this brother. I would literally have to push him to do other things because his heart was with David.

Z's life was not always an easy one. He had had his dad long enough to know how great he was and he missed his dad every day. There were friends and family that on occasions stepped in to try and fill the hole that Tim had left but the reality was....they were not his dad. It was especially hard for him when he went through a rough period where he was bullied by both students and teachers. After a year of home schooling though, Z emerged a much stronger person and rather than let the past affect him....he chose to push forward and leave the past as well as his hurt and anger behind.

Since starting high school, I have watched Z become a man that any parent would be proud of and I know his dad is smiling down. He is strong and knows who he is and what he wants from life. A lot of adults with more years than he has don't even know that. Z has a wicked sense of humor, he is smart and amazingly talented. He is compassionate, caring and he is still David's #1 fan.

To say that Z has been a help to me over the years would be an understatement. There are many things I could not have accomplished with David had it not been for Z. He has been my strength (literally) as he has lifted, adjusted and coerced David along the way. He was never afraid to get in the trenches and change a diaper, help me clean up unpleasant David messes or talk me off a ledge when David was ER or hospital bound. He has been my company so many times on trips back and forth to St. Louis and he is Davids cheering section through it all.

I guess you understand by now, that there is no question as to what an amazing person that I think Z is. It is because of all of this and so much more that I am proud to call him my son. He truly has had my heart from the moment I knew of his existence and although I would love to hold on to him forever....I know this world holds much more for him than just our little house and our family. I have no doubt that he has great things in store for him and I want him to know that although I will miss my little boy....I can't wait to see what my son the man, will accomplish in his lifetime.

To you my son...Z....I wish you a Happy 18th Birthday and a phenomenal life!

I love you more than you will ever know.


Friday, January 17, 2014

Soda vs. Pop and Other Thought Provoking Questions

A facebook post the other day, inspired today's blog. The question on the post? Do you call it Soda, Pop or Coke? Believe it or not, all carbonated beverages do not go under the umbrella of just one name. It actually depends on what part of the country you live in or possibly what family you grew up in as to what you call your carbonated drink. Case and point: Growing up in the lower midwest, I had never heard of  Pepsi, Coke or any other carbonated beverages being referred to as anything but "pop"! You were always first asked if you would like a pop and then they would ask what kind? However.....pop was the name under which most all soft drinks lived. In fact, it wasn't until I was a grown adult that I realized the word "pop" was not universal.

On meeting my husband, I realized that he did not call it pop. He referred to it as soda! The first time I heard him call it that, I remember looking at him like he was speaking a foreign language. Apparently this word (soda) was the substitution for pop in Missouri. Where I came from the only soda I knew, was baking soda and therefor soda and pop were hardly synonymous in my head. We even had a few discussions about pop vs. soda. His thinking on the subject was why would you call your drink something that you might call your father or something that is the sound your soda bottle makes when opened?  Stupid Missouri logic!!! While carbonated beverage names were not a deal breaker as to whether we could be married or not....they certainly were a way in which we could playfully irritate each other.

When we went to Missouri the first time for me to meet his family, his mother bought in bulk and when family came,  she always had a room full of not pop but soda! When I forgot and asked for a pop, they looked at me just like I had looked at Tim the first time I ever heard him say soda. It was kind of a WTH look masked by a bit of a humorous smirk. To not suffer that look again....I was careful to ask for soda or better yet.....drink water the rest of the trip. By the time we got home I had obviously used the word "soda" so much that it had now drifted into my vocabulary. It appeared that  I had surrendered in the war of soda vs. pop......and sadly from that day forward.....I drank soda. Grrrrrr

To make it even more complicated.....I have heard that in some areas....they call it coke. Not the brand name but all carbonated beverages are coke. I cannot even imagine the unholy confusion that this causes poor unexpected individuals who order a soda or a pop. The insanity of it all!!!

It's not just our drinks though. How about when and what you eat? Growing up.....we had four meals. Yes I said four! Monday through Saturday we had breakfast, lunch and supper. On Sundays we had dinner which was a large version of lunch which often times made supper obsolete or at the very least all you wanted was something snacky. That was it. Clean simple and who could find fault? just so happens that if you call it supper in some areas of the country, they immediately look at you like you just fell off the turnip truck. And forget thinking that your supper will be between 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. There are those that don't eat their dinner (my supper) until at least 8 p.m. In my world, that is not caused by choice but rather a long and busy day and no one is particularly happy about it.

In my home today.....we still do the four meals with the addition of a couple of new meals that show up every now and then. On occasion on a Sunday morning, breakfast and lunch will be replaced with brunch. Brunch is a meal somewhere between breakfast and lunch that consists of a variety of  traditional foods from both meals....and if you play your cards right.....alcohol too! If eaten correctly.....brunch will make dinner and/or supper completely unnecessary. Then there is also Brinner. Brinner is actually breakfast for dinner or as us turnip truck fallers call it.....supper. It isn't just your toast and coffee breakfast though, it usually involves eggs, pancakes and/or biscuits and gravy. It is basically our favorite meal of the day when we are awake enough to appreciate it. I have been told that while Brunch is pretty universally accepted as a weekend mid morning meal, Brinner (even having the word dinner in it) is still frowned on perhaps even laughed at in some social and geographical areas. Apparently breakfast for any other meal except breakfast or brunch is just crass and completely uncouth. I wonder where they stand on pop vs. soda?

So now I ask you.....Is it soda, pop or coke? And do you eat supper, dinner or brinner? These are some thought provoking questions in these troubling times and I think the world needs answers!!! Feel free to put yours in the comment section of this blog! ;)

Monday, January 13, 2014

The First Post of 2014

So I guess it is only fitting that my first post of the new year is a combination of politics and a bit of a rant. who just turned off their computers????? Come really has been awhile and I am trying with all my might not to get too immersed in politics on facebook. Too many people can't handle that....and I think I am one of them. Here though...I am free to be me and you are free to come along for the ride.

Now...onto politics. Since last I posted anything political....I have seen a big change in the political world. First of all, I fully expect to see in the next few years a complete disbandment of both the democrat and republican parties. Neither seem to be giving either side what they need and/or want. Instead we have a division of liberals and conservatives with varying degrees of both. From this, I believe new parties may be born. Is this for the better? I guess that remains to be seen.

Another interesting turn I am seeing is that liberals/democrats are starting to turn on their own and everyone else. Can an implosion be too far off? It is an interesting metamorphosis as they are trying desperately to continue to support both verbally and emotionally this party and the man whom they put in office, but even they can't deny the holes in his promises. Healthcare was the thing that made him in many peoples eyes and it may just be the thing that breaks him in those same peoples eyes.

Since healthcare is a pretty sore subject with me and I don't want to raise my own blood pressure right now, we will just suffice it to say that what was promised has not been delivered and people are suddenly realizing that nothing is free and that they will be paying a lot more for a lot less....or be fined. Jobs will be cut back or lost over healthcare and businesses will close over healthcare. Worst of all.....people will die over healthcare and the pretty picture that was painted over Obamacare has grown quite ugly....even to many of his staunchest supporters. Thus....the tides are turning. 

It is really difficult when you have shouted to the rooftops that the man you elected to be this countries saving grace is falling way short of his promises AND that he has told some whoppers along the way...the likes of which might even make Pinocchio blush. It leaves for some really unhappy people in his own party. The fact is....right now liberals are beginning to rival, if not exceed conservatives in their anger. Conservatives saw the writing on the wall long ago, so what is currently happening is no shock to us....but to liberals....they have literally been blindsided. They feel betrayed and angry and yet they are still trying to hold onto the sinking ship that is there faith in the faithless. Because of this....they are starting to angrily and aggressively strike out. Not at the culprit of their discontent mind you, but at conservatives. We are still the root of all evil (in their heads anyway) and we must pay for the lies their leader told them! Case and point.....this little act of outrage.

An individual or possibly individuals going by the name of Patrick Blair out of Buxton, ME (or so his fb page declared) put together a months long plan to both start conservative fb pages and to join conservative fb pages and ultimately gain the trust of the members to the point that some made them administrators. It had been an ongoing game of lies and deception (sounds like the work of someone else I know....hmmmm) and culminated this weekend with these individuals taking over and ousting the admins of the pages they had targeted and then posting pictures of goats with both anti-conservative and anti-Christian remarks. They proudly proclaimed their victory over these pages by "goating" them....and I guess conservatives in general. A big feather in their cap no doubt. However.....let us look at the big picture.

So a bunch of small conservative facebook pages run by some too trusting conservatives were hijacked...but ONLY after months of planning. It seems that our facebook terrorists were living up to their liberal hype. Obviously no one with a "real" job has that kind of time on their hands.....unless of course, THAT was their job. Blair proudly let it slip that he was being paid by George Soros to do this devilish debauchery. If this is true (which I doubt) then this is just another black eye for the liberal machine, however, if not true.....this is just another liberal not willing to take responsibility for his own actions. As for the outcome of their actions......they should feel amazingly proud. They have single handedly shown the world how much they excel in the art of finding stupid goat pictures and putting oh-so clever comments on them. They have shown how they can disrupt a facebook page (now that is big and no one has ever done that before) AND they have schooled the world on how to make themselves and all liberals look like they are working with the mentality of a bored 5th grader. High-five! Oh wait....other than that....what have they really accomplished? That's right....nothing! They have changed no minds, not furthered their cause at all and they quite efficiently made most all liberals look childish and sad. There is after all that whole guilt by association thing....right?! Way to go!!!......said no intelligent liberal ever. If I were a liberal....I would be angry beyond words at these playground antics and at how much damage these legends in their own mind have caused trying to get their 15 minutes of fame....especially in a time when liberals need all the positive exposure they can get. Good job though on exposing yourselves as narcissistic attention whores! did excel!

If you can't tell....these kind of attacks really bother me. Not for the obvious reasons but because this is a sign of the current times. These are not just kids being ornery, nor is it those from another country having a bone to pick with us. No....this is American on American hate. These are the very actions that if the tables had been turned.....liberals would be calling a hate crime. Not only that....facebook has done nothing about this. They aren't shy about squelching freedom of speech when it comes to conservatives, but when this kind of thing happens...... Are you seeing the double standard here......or perhaps Mr. Soros is paying them too. Who knows? 

And so ends the first post of 2014!