Tuesday, August 29, 2006


We got in today from the CVC (Central Veterinary Conference) in Kansas City, Missouri. All things considered it went pretty well.

I missed Cole like crazy even though I talked to him twice a day. He did well with my parents and they all survived. It seems Cole behaved and Toad the kitten was the one being a pest while I was away. Cole was so happy to see me today. He told me many, many times that he loved me, he loved "my whole self" and I was the best mommy. I brought him home a few things from my trip and he loved everything, even the "Kansas City" shirt I bought him. It's great to be back. I have the rest of the week off to spend with him and relax. He isn't going to Pre-K this week and I was pleased to see he has done his "homework" everynight.

We got to Kansas City on Friday afternoon after a long day of traveling. Luckily we didn't have any delays either way. After we checked into the hotel we headed over to the convention center to check in. Luckily, our hotel was very close. We then grabbed a taxi and headed to a bar/restaurant that Deb had been at before. We ate some dinner and then headed back to the room. In general I HATE sharing a room with a co-worker, it just weird to have to get ready for bed and such with someone you work with and then I'm stressed about snoring. I snore especially bad when my allergies are acting up, which of course they were. But all things considered, the rooming situation went well. Luckily, I have no problem poking fun at my self, so I can take a little teasing.

Saturday we spent an entire day at the conference. I was brain dead at the end of the day. During lunch time we walked by the exhibit hall and took a look at some of the new things out there. I watched a short video on Advantix to score a stuffed puppy for Cole! Saturday night we had dinner plans with our rep from Idexx. I was nervous about dinner. I hate meeting new people. I never know what to say and I always feel like I'm the dumbest one at the table, so I was dreading going. The dinner was held at a very nice restaurant. Our rep and several big-wigs from Idexx, as well as, some other clients were there. We were assigned seats. I sat across from a young-ish vet from Missouri and his technician girlfriend. Luckily they were both very nice and we didn't run out of things to say. The doctor's younger brother lives in Austin and he interviewed here fresh out of vet school. It was great comparing facts about the cities we live in and the places we work.

Sunday I attended another entire day of CE. When we got out I was so mentally tired and stir crazy. Deb was sick and went to bed. I wanted to go do something. I decided to go to the Plaza which is a huge outdoor outlet mall about 15 minutes away. As I was leaving, Deb said, "You are really going to go by yourself?" and I replied," Sure, I've done things by myself for years, it's no big deal!" Okay, so I stretched the truth. I actually HATE doing things alone. I rarely did before I had Cole. Once I had him, I had a constant companion, even when he was a infant and couldn't verbally keep me company I had no problem striking out on "my own". I went downstairs and got the bus schedule. I rode the bus to the Plaza and walked around. I bought Cole a few things and then asked for recommendations to eat dinner. I NEVER eat alone, either. Before I had Cole, I also never would go to a restaurant by myself. I bravely walked in and asked for a table for 1. I had the best ribs, I've ever had and enjoyed a nice relaxing dinner. While I was eating a torrential downpour began, the tornado warning sirens even went off (it was a little strange seeing tornado shelters everywhere). The streets were flooded in minutes. I walked through calf high water heading back towards the bus stop and getting soaked because I was out without an umbrella, but I was still having fun. Finally, I ducked inside the Cheesecake Factory to call a cab, because I was still a long way from the bus stop. I ordered a slice of cheesecake and a coffee to go and walked back out into the downpour to catch my cab. I feel weird in a cab. My mom always told me not to talk to strangers and never except a ride from someone you don't know. Catching a cab is breaking two rules at once. The roads were so flooded it took forever to get back to the hotel, because we keep having to take detours and the visibility was virtually zero (luckily he turned the meter off at every detour). Once back at the hotel I decided to go a concert (again alone) that we were given tickets to. It was Phil Vasser a C&W singer. I had no idea who he was, but heck it was free. The concert was pretty good and I actually knew some of his music. I can't believe I did all of that alone, I shocked myself!

So the rest of the conference was more of the same and pretty uneventful. It rained almost every day and since we haven't seen rain here in quite awhile it was pretty nice. On Sunday the highs were in the mid 80's, which was a nice relief from the heat. Plus, I don't feel so isolated about the challenges I face at work, every clinic had similar stresses/stories as mine.

I'm glad I made it home and got a chance so experience somewhere I've never been before.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


It’s sucks that I needed a kick in the rear to reverse my attitude about my current situation. I got that kick last night. I found that my friend’s brother and sister-in-law’s four year old daughter was just diagnosed with leukemia. Kelly was pregnant with Haley the same time that I was pregnant with Cole. She came and visited me shortly after I had Cole to ask questions about labor and having a newborn. I felt like I was punched in the stomach when I heard the news and it isn’t even my child. I can’t even begin to imagine how they are feeling. Cancer is such a scary word, but even worse when it is applied to a child.

Something happening to Cole is my worst nightmare. The thought of him being sick is frightening. I am always worried that something devastating will happen. I’ve been so busy saying “Whoa, is me.” I should be thankful that we are both happy and healthy and have a safe roof over our head.

It seems like most people I know are constantly whining and focus on what they can’t or don’t have instead of being appreciative of what they do have.

So last night, I hugged Cole a little bit harder and longer, gave him and extra kiss and said a prayer of thanks that we are doing alright. I hope that Haley responds well to treatment and goes on to having a great childhood. I made a promise to myself to cherish what I do have, because it’s true that it could always be worse.

Monday, August 21, 2006


Well, the long weekend of moving is finally over. As far as moving goes, it wasn't bad as it could have been. It was hotter than hades. We moved most of the day on Saturday and then got back here and set up the rooms and started unpacking. Cole and I have our own bedrooms and we have our own "TV" room, as well. My parents have been more than gracious trying to make us feel "at home".

On Sunday, we went back to the old place to clean up which is never fun. Today we had the carpets cleaned and I handed over the keys and got my entire deposit back. My landlord was such a jerk the entire time I lived there. Luckily the place was still in great condition even with me, my brother, a child, a dog, and three cats living there. So the deposit goes back to my parents who paid it initially and another chapter closes in my life.

Tonight I brought the cats over which boarded at work all weekend. Bandit is hiding under my parents bed, Toad is investigating everything, and Al is slinking around and has already been in/out the dog door several times. My parents dog is ignoring them and my brother's boxer is curious and wants to play. My dad REALLY dislikes cats. Everytime I've looked at him tonight he has been rolling his eyes and making faces. Al jumped in his lap and my dad said, "Get down!". Whewwww, not really sure how this is going to work. I guess, I need to keep trying to find them homes. Three cats is a lot, I admit (four including my parent's mostly outdoor cat). Cats are much less needy/annoying than dogs. They basically mind their own business, until bedtime or mealtime. But, in a house that isn't use to cats they are a BIG deal. I guess time will tell what further sacrifices we have to make.

Cole has been doing good since we moved. He slept in his new bunk bed two nights in a row. The first night he crawled in bed with me around 3:00 am. Last night made it until my alarm went off. He came in saying, "His bed was tired of him." We watched cartoons in my bed while I showered. When I came out my mom was laying in bed snuggling him. When he saw me, he gently pushed my mom and said, "I think it is time for you to get out now, Granny" as he opened his arms to me. We both cracked up.

So day three of living at home and we are all still alive, guess we will see what tomorrow brings.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Bunk Beds for two

My parents have bought Cole a bunk bed. He got to help pick it out and he was excited to go see it. We headed over last Sunday to go take a look. On the way, I asked him if he was going to sleep in his new bed alone. He said yes. I was shocked and excited and then he said, he was going to sleep on the top bed and the baby brother I was going to give him was going to sleep on the bottom. 'Scuse me? Bed check, scobby doo blankets check, baby brother, oops forget something.

When we got to my mom's he practiced climbing the ladder about a million times. My mom and I had to be his "baby brothers" (picture two grown women squeezed together on a twin sized mattress). Our names? He named my mom "Mister Beach" (which I pronounced Mister "BEE-AAACH") and I was "Mister Ball". We had a good time and Cole made a good, if somewhat bossy big brother.

So, I hope he enjoys his new bed and I'll will continue to play "baby brother"...just not every night.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Blogging break....down

It seems like everyone has taken a break from blogging. It's just that time of year. 101 degree days, no rain, and the final weeks of summer before school begins.

I haven't written in awhile, because I've been depressed and busy. My last few weeks of summer have been filled with endless nights of packing, sorting, donating, and disposing. It's amazing to me how much different this move is for both Cole and I. Neither one of us missed a beat last year when we moved from our house with Randy to one of our own. This move has been much more difficult in some ways. Deciding to leave Randy was a long process, where this move seems sudden. Plus, this oddly enough, is much worse for my ego. Cole has had a more difficult time, as well. He's a year older and much more aware of changes, plus giving up Bullet was difficult. We have our routine and any variation is sure to cause him some confusion. This will be a rough month. We are moving this weekend, I start classes next week, I leave next weekend for 5 days for CE and that's the longest we will have to be apart. When I get back, I have to finish cleaning this place and then my grandparents will be in town. That makes my mom, dad, Cole, me and my grandparents all under one roof. SCARY! My poor parents will REALLY miss their quite solitude!

Over all, I'm feeling better about the move. I'm trying to focus on the positive aspects. Like paying off debt, saving money, potentially having the freedom to go to school full-time and the ability to let my guard down and little and have some help with Cole. I'm looking forward to being able to walk or jog alone or maybe even run an errand or two!

Some days you just need affirmation to refocus on your goals. Today when I picked Cole up from his Pre-K class, I just sat and watched the class be so absorbed and focused on his teacher. I wattch them dance and play with imaginary instruments. Just sitting there watching those rapt and eager faces reminded me again why I want to teach. When you are trying to balance so much in your personal life and go to school, the focus becomes blurry. When I was still trying to decided to move home or not, my mom gave me some good advice. She said, you can do what is easier for your now (which was staying in this house) which might not be the right decision for your future. Or you can make a harder decision to sacrifice now, but achieve your goals sooner (finishing school and getting a house). That was the final advice I needed to make up my mind. I really want to teach (you know..Actual children, not adult children). I want to have more time to spend with Cole. If I continue to live my life without making any changes, I will continue to struggle, in all honesty I probably would give up my dream to teach, because I would never have the financial freedom to student teach, plus taking two classes a semester sure can drag out a degree plan.

So, armed with the renewed focus on my goal derived from Cole's classmates, I picked myself back up. Decided to make some time for fun. Cole and I have been needing some recently. We went to the pool. I forget how using your imagination with a child can make the doldrums of your "real" life slip away. See why I want to teach, I can escape every day and get paid (not well, mind you) for it.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006


Home is where the heart is. Home is where the heart is. I keep repeating this to myself as the day draws closer and closer to when I will have to decide to move back in with my parents.

I left home when I was 18/19 and I haven't had to move back since and I have had some lean times. Don't get me wrong I LOVE and appreciate my family but it is a big sacrifice for both of us, if Cole and I move in.

However, I'm at the edge of the cliff, metaphorically speaking now. I don't really have any options left. I can either stubbornly cling to the hope that I can continue to do this without any financial support from the ex or give up now before my credit is ruined, which will severely impact Cole's future. Besides, right now my parents are helping financially and I know they are giving up things for themselves in order to help us. Moving home will allow us to save some money and I should only have to be there until next August when Cole starts school and I don't have to pay daycare.

Moving home means, giving up all of my animals, yes all. Well, probably not the Beta fish. Toad the kitten, and Bullet our dog proably won't be too hard to find new homes. But I have a 10 year old crotchety cat and a six year old "large" cat that I have had since they were kittens that will be difficult, if not impossible, to find homes for. But, what do I choose Cole or them? It's been heartbreaking to even consider this as an option.

I'm just so tired. I know it's mean, but I hope Randy is miserable. I hope he is feeling at least some of the stress and anguish that I'm feeling. It won't make up for all the mental fatigue, sleepless nights and tears of frustration I have lost, but it's better than thinking of him happy while I struggle to support our son. Last night I sent him an e-mail, which I'm sure he'll never respond to, because that's his way. I let him know exactly what he has done to us and what the consequences of him walking away are. I told him that not only did Cole have to go through his parent's getting divorced and moving from the house he'd known. Then his dad moved away, not allowing for any chance of ever having a relationship. Now he will have to move again from the house that has become his home and give up all his pets and move in with my parents who should not have to help support him. Someday (far from now) when I feel more healed, I will e-mail him a link to my blog, so he can see what a mess he made out of everything.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

The story of the butterfly

Tonight as Cole and I were walking up the front porch several butterflies were flying around a potted plant I have next to the door. Cole said, "Mom do you want to know the story of the butterfly? A callapiller (no, not a typo) eats a tiny little leaf, then it lays on a different leaf and makes a gagoon (again, not a typo), then it wakes up and becomes a BEAUUUUUTIFUL butterfly." It's the little things in life that count.