We hit the HALFWAY MARK!! Both joyful and sober. So happy to be on the downhill portion, but hard to believe there is as much left as has already passed. Turns out getting to the halfway point wasn’t for the faint of heart, as I fought moods, lawnmowers and cat poop. But all in all, those are manageable hurdles, especially with my cheerful, encouraging compatriots along for the journey.
Week 27, September 16 through 22, 2016.
09.16.16 | Exam Week Flashbacks
During exam week at college, Instead of the basic ice cream typically found in the freezers, we were treated to the “fancy” stuff. I never had one, but I always remember my friends raving about the Choco Tacos. And tonight, my girls experienced the joy themselves and savored every single bite.
09.17.16 | Day 181
I think the final straw broke me today. The lawn mower wouldn’t start. (The same lawn mower I had repaired a few months ago.) Singularly, that is not an insurmountable problem. But today, one day shy of the halfway mark of my year single parenting, it was too much. And I sat in the yard and cried. Sydney found me like this. I think she was a bit stunned, as she stood silently next me, then walked back into the house after an interval. Adeline came out about a half hour later, armed with this special card she made for me. And this is what will have to sustain me through the remaining 183 days…
09.18.16 | Halfway There!
I figured today should be marked with a picture of the three girls (and a cat) who are making this year of separation matter. For me, this year without Rey is a very small portion of my life. For Sydney and Adeline, though? This is 10 and 17% of their lives, respectively. That’s a sizable chunk and we cannot spend it forlornly. We cannot sit in a corner and will the time to pass, much as I wanted to follow that course yesterday. So we get up each day, knowing there is a piece of our lives that isn’t quite perfect, but choosing to make the most of it. Enjoying friends, setting up play dates, trying out new sports. Living. And I am pretty sure, with these two by my side, we can live our way through the next six months.
09.19.16 | Not Winding Down
There was laughing. And bounding out of bed. And calls for the cat. And attempts to spell words with their bodies. It was a fight, but finally, there was also sleep.
09.20.16 | Tiny Muscles
Adeline is a tiny bundle of energy, bounding here and there like an oversized electron. That energy has been turned to good purpose in her gymnastics pursuits. It is fun to watch her skills develop week by week.
09.21.16 | Julie-Bilt
After school, the girls and I went to Lowe’s. We bought a new lawn mower. I had help wrestling it into the back of the car. (FYI, a Troy-Bilt lawn mower box will just fit in a Subaru trunk without lowering any seats.) I took it out of the car alone and opened the box. I adjusted the handle, affixed the bolts and put the bag attachment together. I filled it with oil. I filled it with gas. I wheeled it around to the backyard, carefully followed every single step by step instruction to start this magnificent new machine, and wound up in tears again. I pulled to the point of exhaustion. I added a touch more gas. I re-read instructions. I pulled and cried. I looked to the heavens and grumbled and cried. I walked it around the yard thinking a change of location might help. Nothing. So finally I drove it over to the patio and decided to give it one more pull. And to my greatest relief, it finally started! And I mowed the entire backyard in less time than it took to get it running.
09.22.16 | Who me?
“Girls, grab your backpacks and…”
“Mom! Stormy’s dragging his butt on the ground.”
Rapid fire commands to grab paper towels, to corner the cat, and to stop him from touching anything. Mass confusion, inept help and finally the terrified cat is locked into a bedroom so I can take the girls to school drop off on time. I return home, knowing I have the unenviable task of washing poop out of cat fur. Alone. I carefully carry Stormy to the bathroom, where paper towels are prepositioned in anticipation of the fun to come. With a firm grasp, I turn the sink faucet on and lower his hind quarters into the stream of water. At the exact same instant, he plunges his front claws (for he still has them) into my left shoulder blade and attempts to scale me. I do my best to salvage my skin, my shirt and avoid getting any poop on myself.
I basically sit him in the sink and ruthlessly flush the tainted area with all the water I can. When he finally pries himself loose, I make one last grab and throw him in the tub, where he, with his no longer fluffy tail, stares dejectedly at me.
And I call it a win. What will come my way next?!