I’m crazy. That’s it.

My life in the crazy zone continues this week.

Yesterday morning I spent a considerable amount of time counting and rolling change collected by Middle School Students for a fundraiser that I now officially hate with all of my being.  I’m pretty sure that there are moms of some of the students that participated that wouldn’t be happy if they knew that their children raided their piggy banks and some rarer coins for the donation.  There were wheat pennies, $2 bills, and an assortment of other monies that were probably gifted by a grandparent for the child to save.  I know that my mother would have exchanged those items with every last cent that she has in order to gift them to her grandchildren.

I am not my mother.  I am still tired and cranky and all of that crap change went to the bank.

I received notice that my ex’s truck was officially repossessed last week.  Perhaps I was a bit harsh when I assumed that he missed the soccer game due to a hangover from Mardi Gras.  It was an honest mistake based on years of experience.  However, I might have guessed that it was due to the other thing that seems to happen to him over and over – vehicle repossession.  Most people don’t ever get to experience the joy of having a vehicle repossessed.  My ex has experienced it five times (that I know of) and four of those times it was the same vehicle.

I realized that the date of the repossession was the same date that he texted me asking if I had heard from the bank.  You think he knew that they were looking for it?  Undoubtedly.

Even so, I texted him to let him know that there was correspondence from the bank at my house.  He replied “thanks” and then launched into some paranoid ramblings about the Pope resigning was suspect and “too coincidental” with other happenings in the world, like the collapse of the dollar and the Euro.  He went on to say that the media only tells us what they want, like the story on the shootings at the school in Newtown was just to get more gun control.  He’s afraid of what the media isn’t telling us, and he felt an overhelming need to share his thoughts with me, you know, just in case.  He believes that the Pope resigning is making room for the “False Prophet” and the end was surely near.  Car-less man, say what?

I already suspected an alien invasion with my teenagers, but this confirms it.  Who is this guy?

Obviously, someone is off his meds.  Or should get meds.

And then he should share them with me because I think the crazy is rubbing off.  No, don’t worry, I’m not fretting over the end of the world or anything like that.  I believe that ignorance is bliss and besides, I have no desire to live in a hut in the woods and live off the land if that’s the prediction.  I will starve to death with my phone in hand while trying to find a signal to order a pizza.  Judge me, if you must.  I know my limitations.

Instead, I’m busy fretting over my first world problems.  First off, while engaging in a text conversation about the end of the world with my ex, I was also texting with the Booster Club president about nonprofit organization status and IRS filings.  My text about media and how it’s really about greed and what sells advertising not about conspiracy, was sent to the Booster president.  Who I’m guessing lives outside the boundaries of the Crazy Zone I live in.  I was completely and utterly horrified.  He must think that I’m crazy.

As do I.

Unfortunately, my lack of texting skills isn’t the only thing that proves it.  My disappointment that my ex didn’t hit bottom pretty much seals the deal.  Yep, it’s true.  I’m disappointed.  Within the span of two weeks, the man was arrested for a hot check and his truck was repossessed.  Let me tell you, that would be my bottom.  This would have the same effect as forcing me to live in a hut the woods.  I would die.

Not him.  Two days after his truck disappeared, he was merrily riding on a Mardi Gras float tossing beads at patrons.

That’s just not at all how I saw this playing out at all.  I envisioned an epiphany, quickly followed by a spiritual awakening.  Like an actual spiritual awakening, not just his interpretation that God was about to bring his wrath upon us.

How am I still this optimistic after this many years?  What was I thinking?

I mean, I know that the man is narcissistic, so it stands to reason that he would interpret his financial demise as a clear indication of the demise of mankind and the end of the world.  How could I forget so quickly that the world revolves around him?  Wasn’t I married to him long enough to learn that?

Not only am I amazed at his reaction, but I’m baffled by my own.  I’m not exactly sure what I was expecting.  A rock bottom parade?

I don’t know.  I was just holding out a shred of hope that the truck repossession would be the last straw and he would finally see the light and get the help he needs.  I don’t know why I even care.

Oh yes, I do know why.  I’m CRAZY.  That’s it.

 

 

 

Let my hair down

I started dating my husband during my senior year in college.  It was an amazing time for me.  I was full of confidence and the world was mine.  I had already received a job offer from a Big Six Accounting firm, slated to start the following fall, so my last semester was merely a formality.  I had time to breathe and enjoy life, which was a nice break from studying and working several part-time jobs.

He was fun, and there hadn’t been much fun in my life for a bit of time, since I was focused on school and my goals.  He was the antithesis of that – carefree and fun-loving.  A breath of fresh air.

We went dancing at bars and gambled at casinos and took trips to the Hill Country to hunt.  He was funny and people were drawn to him, so we were always surrounded by people.  It was a new, social world and I enjoyed letting loose, drinking, and having a good time.  It seemed to be fate that we met at a time that I could appreciate this different world.  I thought that he was the yin to my yang.  The perfect balance.  I taught him how to set goals and he taught me how to let go.

By the time I left for my new job in the city, he was ready to set career goals and follow my path.  We left his life behind in pursuit of my goal-oriented life.  And it was great.

For a while.

My job demanded an incredible number of hours.  He became restless.  He started spending weekends in our hometown, partying with his old friends.  It didn’t bother me because he was still working hard on his career goals during the week, and I was busy anyway.  In fact, it wasn’t until we had kids that I felt the disconnect between our values.

After our first son was born, we relocated back to our hometown near family.  We weren’t back in town long before I realized that we had made a mistake.  He was back into his old life and old patterns.  What had been temporary fun to me was a lifestyle for him.

Over the years, I found that if I had one drank, he would have six.  I stopped drinking, as if I could somehow control his behavior by controlling mine.  I became ultra-conservative and responsible to make up for his lack of responsibility.  I lost my ability to have a good time.  He reminded me constantly that I wasn’t “fun” and boy, did I know it.  I was not having fun at all.  I was always the designated driver.  I was always the one begging to go home before closing time because I was always the one responsible for getting up with the 3-year-old at 6am on weekends.  I always had to keep my wits about me.  It was never my turn to let my hair down and blow off steam.

I joked that my husband would “bring a cooler to a funeral.”  Seriously, the cooler went EVERYWHERE.  To the lake. To the golf course.  To the deer lease.  To trick-or-treat.  I lectured him that you do not have to consume alcohol to have a good time.  I was living proof.  (ha)

I still believe that you do not need alcohol to have a good time, BUT I think that my views about alcohol have skewed a bit far in the other direction.  Like to the point that I am now completely paranoid about drinking.  I find excuses not to drink or to avoid places where others are drinking.  Not because their behavior bothers me or because I think that they are doing anything wrong.  Quite the opposite.  I envy them and their ability to relax and have fun.

I just can’t relax.

Over the past few years (or many), I have grown accustomed to being on high alert.  I’m always ready to handle whatever crisis might arise.  I’m always waiting for a phone call from the kids to pick them up.  If I have a glass of wine and feel relaxed, I am not on high alert.  I am not in total control of anything and everything.  That scares me, and because of that, I’m becoming more and more anti-social.

Recently, however, when the boys took their father out for dinner, I went to dinner with a friend and I actually allowed myself to order a glass of wine.  (You cannot imagine the internal pep talk that took.)  Although I usually prefer the sweetness of a frozen drink or fruity martini, my friend found a sweet wine for me to try and I liked it.  I liked the taste and the relaxed aura it provided.  I reminded myself (in my head) over and over again that I was in control and that I had not done anything wrong.  It was one drink and I could still handle any crisis.  I battled the fear and forced myself to appreciate the opportunity to relax.

Later, we found the wine at a local store and I bought a bottle.  I told myself that one night, when the boys were busy with friends, I would once again relax.  I bought the first season of “The Good Wife” on DVD and planned to lounge on the couch with a nice glass of wine and a great show.  It sounded like the perfect plan, and I was excited this past weekend when the opportunity for it arose.

Until the time came.  Then I thought of all of the scenarios that could happen that would be disastrous if that glass of wine “went to my head” and I wasn’t in total control.  What if my oldest son decided not to spend the night out and needed me to come and get him?  What if the boy spending the night with my youngest son got sick in the middle of the night and needed me to take him home?  I could not put a child in the car with me after drinking a glass of wine.  That would be irresponsible.

Ironically, I work in the entertainment industry.  I know the state laws regarding alcohol consumption.  I know what to look for and what to look for as signs of intoxication.  I know that studies have shown that your body can process approximately one drink per hour.  And therefore, I know that my fear of drinking ONE glass of wine is a bit irrational.

On the other hand, I’ve seen the effects of alcohol abuse on a person and it scares me.  It scares me to the point that I won’t allow myself to even enjoy alcohol responsibly, let alone abuse it.  After years of living with a risk-taker, I won’t allow myself to take the slightest risk.

And I no longer seem to know how to let my hair down.

Can you see the bottom?

During the conversation-that-never-should-have-happened-with-my-ex, I got the opportunity to say some things that needed to be said.  We all know that they fell on deaf ears, but it made me feel better to say them.  I can tell myself that I tried.

When we were young and his father did or said awful things when he was drunk, I begged my then-husband to confront him the next day when he was sober.  Surely, he remembered the event and felt remorse about it.  Wouldn’t that be the ideal time to TELL him that it was hurtful and that he needed to make a change?  I never understood why everyone just let it happen.

Oh, to be young and naive again.

I brought this up with my ex the other day, though.  I told him that I was going to be brave enough to tell him the things that we weren’t brave enough to tell his father.

My ex is not ready to acknowledge that alcoholism and gambling addiction are part of his life.  If I mention alcohol, he gets angry and says that just think that because of the way that his father drank.  He doesn’t drink that much.  And he NEVER gambles.  (Yeah right, just like I NEVER eat chocolate.)

I knew that if I said those words, he would become defensive and shut down, and I really wanted him to hear what I had to say.  Or at least pretend.  Since he was sitting there with his hand out, I figured that this was my best opportunity.

I asked him if he could at least acknowledge that he has a lifestyle problem.  (How’s that for a nice sugar-coating?  It’s the M&M of addiction-speak.)  He looked confused at first, so I pointed out that he has lived in 7, oops make that 8 different places over the course of the last 5 years.  And how many times has his truck been repossessed?  He’s been robbing Peter to pay Paul, and he’s constantly having to juggle financial obligations.  (Seriously, I’m like a politician making a recession sound like a siesta.)  He agreed that he “just can’t catch a break and get ahead.”  Oh, Brother.  He’s under so much stress and I can’t imagine how hard it is to live this way.  Under this much pressure.

I had to pause.  Choose my words carefully.  Yes, I can only imagine, but do you realize that the way that you are living is the result of a series of bad choices?  I mean, four years ago, you made more money, lived with a girlfriend rent-free, and you still had financial issues.  You’ve actually been robbing Peter and thinking this way for more than 15 years.  When you were gambling, you know, WAAAYY back then, you had to think that way to keep it hidden from me.  You had to borrow from people and scramble around town.

Why do you think this line of thinking is so stressful now?  Is it because of the length of time that you’ve been thinking this way and its finally taking a toll?  Or is it because it has all finally caught up with you and there aren’t any more rabbits to pull out of the hat?

It’s hard for me to have sympathy for your situation (I know, Liar, Liar, pants on fire) because you’ve had so many chances to fix it in the past.  You’ve been given so many opportunities to do the right thing.  I often wonder why you won’t get a second job on the weekends.  In fact, it’s something that I carried a grudge about after I found out about the gambling, you know, SOOOO many years ago.  You promised to get a second job to pay off the debt, but you never did.  You left it all up to me to figure out.

I see that as proof that you aren’t really willing to do the hard work that it’s going to take to make a permanent change.  You are still looking for a handout.  Giving you money isn’t going to fix the problem.  I told you last March when you asked for money for the rent house that giving you money is like putting a band-aid on the Titanic.  You will never change your lifestyle unless you suffer the consequences of your actions.

He tried to interject that he was suffering consequences, but I pointed out that these were only temporary consequences until he found someone to help.  He always had hope that he could talk someone into helping him out, allowing him to get by just a little bit longer.

Until you hit rock bottom, you will continue to live this way.  You won’t do the hard work that it takes to make a lifestyle change.   There are people addicted to crack that are better able to pull themselves out of the trenches and improve their lives.  People in worse situations that do it every day.  You have to be willing to do the hard work.

I said that I felt like he needed to hear these things the way that I always wanted his dad to hear them.

He said, “I did tell my dad those things, but he continued to live hard.  Hell, he lived harder than even I am.  He lost everything and he still didn’t change.”

“You’re right.  Everybody’s bottom is different.  His rock bottom was death.  I hope that it isn’t yours, too.”

Can you see the bottom?  I can, but I’m pretty sure that my ex can’t.  He’s too busy looking for the next handout.

The Twilight Zone

When the phone rang and I saw the familiar picture identifying the caller, I could almost hear Rod Sterling’s voice.

“You are about to enter another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind. A journey into a wondrous land of imagination. Next stop, the Twilight Zone!”

That show gave me nightmares as a child.  The eerie music and the announcer’s voice during the introduction were enough to send chills down my spine.  I was having a similar reaction to the name on my Caller ID.

And yet, I took the call.

No, no, it wasn’t the announcer from the 1950s sitcom calling.  It was my ex-husband.

He said that he had just driven by my house and saw that I was leaving to take my our son to school.  He asked if he could swing back by the house to talk.  “It’s not what you think it is, but I really need to talk to you.”  There were a couple of things that I thought it was, so I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to eliminate one or both of them.

I really should have told him that I was late for a meeting, but I didn’t think that fast on my feet.  It was early.  I hadn’t taken a sip of my Starbuck’s Frappuccino.  I was confused.  I was curious.  I agreed to meet with him, even though I lectured myself the entire way home about what a very bad idea that was.

When I turned the corner onto my street, there was his truck outside my house.  As I approached the house (slowly), I reflected on the way I used to feel when I turned that corner and saw my driveway.  Five years, possibly even just four or three years ago, I looked for that truck every time I made that turn.  I longed to see it to be parked in the driveway like it was for so many years.  I would hold my breath as I turned the corner, only to be disappointed.

Now when I turn the corner and catch sight of the truck parked outside of my house, I catch my breath, but not in a good way.  More like when a someone is trapped in an alley, destined to be attacked, and frantically searches for an escape route sort of way.  I wonder if he will notice my car if I just drive past my own house?  Right past his truck?

He followed me into the house and said, “I see the temperature still hasn’t changed in this place.  You could hang meat in this place.”  Well, a chill certainly just ran up my spine, but would you like to test that hanging meat theory? 

That comment pretty much set the tone for our discussion.  While he sat on the opposite couch, making small talk, I casually frantically scanned the room in search of other things that he might find to criticize.  I was on edge.  Which critique, I wondered, would be the one that caused me to inflict bodily harm?  Should I make a dash to the medicine cabinet for that old bottle of Xanax to offset the potential threat of me going postal?

He rambled on for a bit before dropping the hammer, I mean, making his point.  He told me that he had interviewed for a job late last week.  He described the job and his hopeful rate of pay.  Before I knew it, he was in tears.  He explained that his phone service and been cut off and he had no idea if they had tried to contact him about the job.  He went on to tell me what a mess he was in and how I wouldn’t believe how bad his financial situation was.  Oh, I have a pretty good idea.  We were married for 13 years, remember?

He complained about how hard his life is.  He’s always having to think about money.  He never leaves his house.  He never does anything fun.  He no longer hunts and fishes and plays golf, and he hates that he can’t do those things with his boys.  He’s just the empty shell of a man and if it weren’t for the boys, he might kill himself.

I became angry.  I started yelling.  Can you possibly think that this life I’m living is easy?  I’m constantly thinking about money, too.  Can I afford to fix the car?  Can I afford to fix the dryer?  Can I afford to pay for gas and insurance for a soon-to-be 16-year-old?  Am I going to have to sell my body for cash to pay for TWO college educations?  Sure, your financial situation might be worse, but that’s because of decisions that YOU made.

Do you really think this is how I thought our lives would end up?  We had dreams and plans and they did not include me mowing lawns and pinching pennies and raising boys all by myself.  They certainly didn’t include you making all of these stupid, stupid decisions and living the messed-up life that you are living.  You were supposed to be more.  WE were supposed to be more.  And I am angry.  Angry that I am living this hard life and you are living that hard life and we failed at fulfilling our dreams.

Sadly, when I get that angry, there are tears.  I can’t help it.  Call me a girl.  Unfortunately, I think he mistook those tears for sympathy, or regret, or hope, or some other emotion that would work to his advantage.  He started telling me that he knew that no one would ever stand behind him the way that I had.  No one would ever believe in him the way that I did.  It would never be the same.  He wondered why we were still living this way.  Why didn’t we go ahead and just put things back together?

WHAT?????  YOU DID THIS!  YOU CHOSE THIS!  I begged you to choose me, but you thought that there were greener pastures.  You thought that you could do so much better without me.  AND THEN, even after things weren’t better and your financial situation started decline, you opted to live in squalor rather than live with me.  I wasn’t good enough for you to love.

Okay sure, it might have felt good to hear him admit that he would never find what we had, but let’s really dissect what he was saying to me.

He was NOT saying that he loved me more than anything and realized that he couldn’t possibly love anyone as much as he loved me.  Nope.  He was actually saying that no one would ever love HIM as much as I loved him.  No one would ever treat HIM the way that I treated him.  And can I point out that he told me all of these things WHILE HE IS LIVING AS A FAMILY WITH SOMEONE ELSE?  (Apparently, he left the townhouse (rent payments questionable) almost immediately after he was served papers that I was reducing visitation.)

Yeah, I pointed it out to him, too.  He responded that they were merely “going through the motions.”  Excuse me, by WHAT THE HECK?????  I’m pretty sure that’s how you described OUR marriage toward the end.  But I wasn’t just going through the motions.  I was begging and pleading and crying.

He told me more about his financial situation.  The bank is threatening to repossess his truck.  The IRS is threatening to garnish his wages.  He owes so many people and he’s starting to lose friendships over it.  My head was spinning and I knew that he was asking for money.  And I knew that he asking to come home because he is probably close to being evicted from his girlfriend’s house.  He is close to a bottom and I am his safety net.

That’s when it hit me.  This nightmare is never going to end.

It takes everything that I have to say no to this man.  Even when I’m able to stick to my guns, I am tortured by it.  And it seems like such a big deal when I’m able to say no, but it really doesn’t change anything.  No matter how many times I say no, eventually, he will try again. He doesn’t see the boundary that I set and respect it.

I mean, right now, we don’t even SPEAK, and he felt it was okay to unload all of this on me.

And believe me, I felt the burden of the load.  I spent the next few days worrying about it.  Thinking about his financial position.

That’s who I am.  I’m the girl who pays $15 for a 4″ wooden cross in the parking lot of Taco Bell from a man who doesn’t speak English, but dressed in a blazer to sell his wares.  I’m the girl who pays $7 for a box of only 6 turtle candies because a kid is collecting money for inner-city kids.  I’m the girl who pays $45 for a bottle of cleanser spelled with a “K” from a toothless gentlemen that anxiously wanting to show me how it works on anything and everything.  I buy girl scout cookies and boy scout popcorn.  I put money in the fireman’s boot at the intersection.  I buy Christmas gifts for senior citizens that put wishes on the Christmas Tree at Walgreens, and I go broke putting money in the red bucket when I exit the store and hear the familiar Salvation Army bell.

If I have a dollar to give, and you need it, well, I feel obligated to give it.  Even if it’s my last dollar.  It’s WHO I AM.

And for the rest of my life, I am going to have to betray my very own nature.  I’m going to have to force myself to say no over and over again.

I’m forever going to be stuck in this freaky episode of The Twilight Zone.

Raising a boy to be a man

This morning, my oldest son and I got into an argument.  Today is game day for him and he was looking for a particular shirt to wear to school.  Helping him find it meant that I had to dig through mountains of clothes in his closet.  The closet that I told him to clean over the holidays.  I had to step around video games and empty wrappers and a million other things that littered the floor in his room.  The room that I told him to clean over the holidays.

After my surgery, I told the boys that I needed them to “help me out more.”  I tossed out a couple of examples like laundry and dishes and cited the fact that I wasn’t allowed to bend over.  There was one morning when I insisted that they clean up the dog’s landmines in the laundry room and I was proud of them as I listened to the sound of them working together to clean up the mess.  I also might have giggled at the sound of their gagging.  Welcome to my world.

I didn’t really hold them to the laundry and dishes.  That one act of cleaning up dog excrement was enough for me.  Until the day before the Cotton Bowl when I realized that people were coming over and they would have to step over all of the untied Nike’s in the front entry way.  That’s when I looked around and saw the stacks of clean laundry that they had not put away, the spills on the kitchen floor that they did not wipe up, and the Christmas gifts that they had not bothered to take to their rooms.  I noticed much more, but I’m trying to hold onto some dignity and pretend that my house didn’t look like tornado wreckage.  Even though it did.

I sat down and composed a…booklet?  I titled it “What I Mean When I Say…”  Each page had a different topic like “Clean Your Room” or “Clean the Bathroom.”  The final page was titled “Help Me More.”  This was the catch-all page.

The boys were less than thrilled with my composition.  There was much eye-rolling and complaining about my OCD.  The oldest one sarcastically stated that he would have been cleaning that way all along if I had just been more specific.  (Sarcasm is a second language in our house.  Well, perhaps it’s our first language.)

So this morning when I was wading through a room and closet that were nowhere CLOSE to clean in my opinion, I was a bit miffed.  said in my sarcastic tone that I should have written the booklet in braille or some other language that he could understand.

He argued that the condition of his room and closet weren’t the problem.  The laundry was the problem.  “If you had taught us how to do the laundry, then we could do it when you fall behind like right now.”

Listen, I joke around with my kids a LOT.  We make jabs at each other.  They tease me about my driving and cooking and a million other insignificant things.  It’s all in jest.  They are never malicious, so I don’t think anything about it.

But his comment this morning was not said in fun.  He was tired and nervous and agitated and I was his target.  He meant to be disrespectful.  I won’t tolerate disrespect.  I lived with it for 13 or so years.  I corrected him.  He argued back.  He was angry and mean and intent on putting me in my place.  It was a power struggle.  I slapped him on his cheek.  Not hard, but enough to get his attention.  He raised his fist to hit me.

Rage.  I felt rage.  Rage from fear.  Rage from years of abuse.  Although I have never seen that from him, I have certainly seen it enough times from his father.  I yelled at him that if he even dared to use that fist, I would call the police and he would be displaced from my home immediately.  I would never be abused by another man again, and if he thought he had the right to raise his hand to me, he’d better be ready for the consequences.  If you think you are old enough to be a man then get ready to live like one.

He started to cry and I turned and left the room.  I went into the laundry room and closed the door.  I screamed and then I cried.  I hated myself for putting a hand on him.  I hated myself for tolerating abuse from his father.  I hated myself for feeling fear and rage and hiding in a laundry room unable to keep it together.  I hated myself for potentially sending him to school with this on his mind.

I pulled myself together and left the laundry room.  I approached him and told him that I was sorry for losing my temper.  I explained to him that it is NEVER acceptable to attempt to dominate and incite fear in a woman.  And I told him that I meant what I said about the violence.  I will not allow him to live with me if he EVER raises his hand to me again.  I love him unconditionally and nothing he will ever do can change that, BUT I will not accept abuse of any kind.  So if I have to love him from afar to protect myself, then I will do that.  Those are my rules.  Those are my boundaries.  I don’t ever want to lose him, but I have higher expectations of him.

He was sullen.  He was remorseful.  He was apologetic.  Honestly, I think his movement was instinctive.  Let’s not forget that although his father didn’t do to him what he did to me, he has lived in some fear of it.  An instinctive move by a pubescent teen raised by an abusive father.  It seemed to scare even him.  He kept saying, “I’m so sorry, Mom.  I didn’t mean it.”

Before he left for school, we had worked things out and were back to joking around.  I’m not attending his scrimmage tonight because it is almost two hours away.  I would have to arrange rides, food, and homework help for my other son and drive four hours to watch a shortened 40 minutes of soccer.  And flooding rains are predicted.  (See how I’m justifying here?)  In exchange, I am taking off work on Friday to see his tournament.  It’s all very logical, especially for the single mom of two kids, but as both mother and father, I feel guilty about it.

Therefore, he teases me.  Last night he told me that he was going to score a goal and then he would hold it over my head forever that I missed the first goal of his high school career.  He smiled.  He winked.  He was adorable.  And before he left for school, we had put things back to normal enough that he smiled and winked and teased me about his upcoming goal.  He promised to text me the score as soon as he boarded the bus.

I felt better that I sent him to school focused on his game and his future, not on the past.  Not on pain and fear.  Not with any worry that I didn’t love him.

I, however, am still stunned.  I am seeing visions of the past.  I am praying that those are not visions of his future.  I want more for him.  I just have to figure out how to provide it.

[I’m going to state openly that I am very fearful of publishing this post.  I’m a Mama Bear fearful of ridicule of her Cub.  I’m fearful of ridicule for my reactions.  I am posting this with honesty.  We are not perfect.  I know that I am codependent.  I know that my reactions stem from jaded interpretations of events based on my past.  Trust that I am working on it.  Trust that we will both be talking to our counselors.  Trust that my house is usually full of love and light.  Today, though, there was some darkness.  And I am trusting it with you.]