Have You…

“Have you blogged lately?” my darling husband asked, after a seemingly restless evening.  He doesn’t read my blog much (not that anyone does,) so it meant a lot to me that he noticed that I hadn’t put many thoughts down as of late.  I felt oddly heard?  Noticed?  Acknowledged?  It felt good that he’d asked about something that I’d been doing… or haven’t for that matter.

I’ve been pretty stressed out lately.

I’m not as happy as I once was with my work situation.  I mean it’s a far cry from the job I had before that made me come home in tears every day.  But the back and forth back and forth just isn’t okay.  Re-negotiations on my pay scales, approved overtime to work on special projects no longer available because a part timer person will just be brought in to take on some of my regular tasks so that I can focus on something else that has nothing to do with our company.  Not enough staffing to be able to take a sick day when I can barely breathe.  Worrying about if there’s going to be enough money in the bank in a few months to be able to pay all of the expenses.  That should be a personal problem, not a professional problem.  Overtime that was supposed to be paid out weekly in the new year turned into time-in-lieu instead…..trying to figure out how to take 6 weeks off from work between said time in lieu + vacation time.  It just sucks ’cause the bossman is an excellent person and has helped our family out a great deal.  But when it comes to workflow, everything is in shambles.  If I were single without stepchildren, maybe I wouldn’t care as much, but my marriage and my relationships with my husband’s children are more important to me than that.

Which brings me to my next point of stress.  Being a step parent sucks sometimes.  It’s wonderful because it’s filled a little bit of a void I’ve had on the kid front.  After having 5 miscarriages and not being able to have children of my own, I sometimes struggle with knowing I’m an amazing parent and that I have a lot to contribute to a tiny life…..it’s just that I can’t bring that life into this world.  It sucks because something that happened before me dictates part of my current life.  It sucks more because I don’t directly have a voice in the matter; thankfully my husband stands his ground now and voices what’s best for all involved, even in the face of objection.
Over the last 2 years, my step kids’ bio mom hasn’t given me the time of day.  I’ve tried to put many different olive branches out there and have tried to bridge the gap.  I’ve gone out of my way to try to not cross boundaries and to put a hard divide between mom and step mom.  I know that I’m not her favorite person.  I know that she has certain insecurities.  And that’s okay.  But what’s not okay is not giving another human being a certain degree of common courtesy, then just inviting yourself over to interact with them.  I’m sorry, if you can’t so much as say hello to me in a public place, you have no business trying to integrate yourself into my life.  I’m thankful that he told her no.  I’m thankful that he stood up for me.  I wish I could stand up for myself, though.

Anywho, these things have been weighing on me.  Plus being sick hasn’t helped.  The kids were sick, then I had a fit of allergy madness, then my husband got sick and is getting over the crud, but now the kids are back and one of them is sick…again…. I swear they’re always sick. Sometimes it just feels like there’s always something, and no amount of self care really helps alleviate the stress.  So that’s sorta where I’m at right now and the reason for the lack of blogging.  Hopefully soon I’ll snap out of it and will have the mental capacity to write on a regular basis again.

 

Lazy Day

Because of the most absurd custody arrangement that my husband is subjected to, every Christmas day is fairly uneventful. We dropped the kids off on Christmas Eve and proceeded to have some much needed time together.

We had a full on lazy day.

We stayed in bed longer than normal. We had a huge brunch and played video games. We watched some Netflix. We cooked supper then played some more video games. Aside from a couple of hectic phonecalls, today was pleasantly uneventful.

We needed it.

I don’t think people truly appreciate the impact that the occasional lazy day can have on people. How well it can help rejuvenate and refresh you from being so run down.

Holiday Hysteria

I’m tired.


Huge shout-out to my darling husband.  He is by far the most patient man alive. Thanks for your support babe. No clue what I’d do without you.

Why do I give him incredible praise right now for his patience?  Well. Lately I’ve been working a solid 50 hours per week, usually 7 days per week, not including all the texts and emails I’ve tended to while at home. When he gets off work, he comes to my office, and we have microwaved leftovers for supper on styrofoam plates with plastic forks. It’s tense, but at least we get to have a meal together.

When I took this job, we knew that the Christmas season would be hell. Just another week of chaos left.  We’re in the home stretch, but I’ve got a huge push to do so that I can get all of the financials in order for the company. Preemptive payroll, finalize schedules, figuring out what to do with a shithead employee who has caused a pretty big ruckus.  Blah.

This weekend, we finally had some work-free and kid-free time to spend together. Don’t get me wrong, I love my job and I love my stepchildren, but nothing tops being able to spend some one-on-one time with my better half. 

Despite my longing to have more time to tend to our marriage, I look forward to our family get-together.  This year we had family photos done and had them turned into gorgeous Christmas cards. Annnnnnd we have something huge planned for the kids.

I’ve found a new love for the holidays, but man they’re exhausting and I can hardly wait for it to be over!

Bubbles

Never underestimate the power of a good bubble bath.

It’s been a rough few months. One thing after another after another. I’ve honestly been surprised that I’ve been in as good spirits as I have been. I credit that to my amazing husband who knows exactly how to make me laugh (or at the very least shake my head.)

After a rough October, November didn’t pan out to be much better. Once we got our vehicles back on the road, my landlady called me upstairs for a chat. She said that her ex hadn’t paid child support in 11 months and that she was looking at going back to trial, so it was going to cost her another $10,000. Because of that, she wanted to raise our rent by over 4% and also wanted us to pay 1/3 of it in cash. Why? Because “her tax guy” told her to so that it would reduce her income and property tax. The woman, in not so few words, asked me to help her commit fraud. No thanks. But she’s telling people that she’s increasing it due to us having “higher utilities than expected,” which is a load of garbage.

I asked for help from someone I trust to figure out what we should do. He immediately starts making calls, finds us a new place to live that’s at least twice as large, tells me how the budget would work, helps us negotiate a lower price, and helps navigate us through breaking our lease. Things got ugly. After we turned our 30 day notice in, the landlady came downstairs screaming and yelling at us. Just what I needed on top of everything else.

It started as the fight, then protests and threats in emails. Then things got petty like scheduling viewings every day of the week. Finally, we got some help from the Office of Rental Tenancies here, and should be in the clear. She’s still being ugly over the move out process, but I know where she can go and can tell her how to get there… In a handbasket.

Everything hurts. We moved a solid 95% of our belongings in about 3 hours. Unfortunately most of our connections were out of town, with the exception of one of my employees that graciously came to help. Everything still hurts.

We moved from a small ~700 sq ft 2 bedroom mother-in-law apartment (or “suites” as they’re called in Canada) to a townhouse. There’s still only 2 actual bedrooms, but they’re larger and it has a full basement as well. We’re converting the basement into a 3rd bedroom and playroom for the kids. Hell, our walk in closet is so big, it could have been used as sleeping quarters for the youngest kiddo. Oh yeah, and it has an extra half bathroom, which is fantastic. We have a teeny tiny little yard, a teeny tiny little white picket fence, and a teeny tiny little porch. They’re all far cries from the stoop and sidewalk we had before. We have parking!

The best part of all? The bathtub. One of the only things I was iffy about when deciding to move was having a nice tub. (Not that I was able to use it frequently at the old place because my landlady griped about the water bill all the time, even though it was only $20-30 higher every month from before we moved in.) But, as a tall girl, once you have a tub that can fit your legs and boobs under the water at the same time ….it’s just hard to give that up. The new place has an equally great tub. A little more narrow, but a little deeper. It’s amazing.

So here I lie, second night in a row, having a nice Epsom salt and vanilla scented bubble bath. Soaking the aches and stresses of the past month away is really nice. Behold the power of bubbles!