Tuesday, September 29, 2009

An open letter to Lou, and a belly button birthday

Dear Lou,

I miss you! I tried to find your email address to send you a note, only to remember that my computer died an untimely death back in July, and I lost a ton of email addies at that time....

I have since been adjusting to the "wonders" of Vista (grrrr!) and every so often I find yet another email address that is missing.

Sigh. If you still have mine, and are not opposed, please send me a quick "Boo!" ?

I am sorry you are not blogging - but I am not going to be nosy, or beg you to change your mind.... Given my own blogging regularity (ahem.... not!) I can certainly respect that as you say, the blogging community is fluid, and folks come and go....

I can, however, POUT!! I do miss your posts, and I have been so blessed to read your writings. So there! Enuf said....

New Subject: Daughter (DD2) had a birthday....

Her belly-button birthday (not sobriety birthday) was last Friday. Her sister and I went to her sober home early in the morning and took her a cupcake with candle, and a gift. She was still in her "jammies" and so excited to see us..... She kind of reverts to being a little girl and calls me "Mommy" when she is really happy.

We gave her an inexpensive pay-as-you-go cell phone, and paid for first month. After that, it's her responsibility. While she was unwrapping it (it was in a pocket of a purse I made her)
her sister on the left hit "dial" on her own phone, to make the new one start ringing.

It was a happy day! I had been looking forward to this little celebration for a long time, ever since I had the idea, made the purse, etc.

Her birthday last year, she was very, very loaded.... she doesn't even remember much of it, but I am really really happy we got to make this memory this year!


Saturday, September 12, 2009

Who am I?

I met DD2 and her boyfriend at The Crossing for the Lifelines meeting last night. I seriously love that meeting.

The leader started a new series last night about self esteem and identity and it was eye opening. At one point, he had us turn to each other and say something to the person next to us (thank heavens I was on an aisle and DD2 was on my right.... Snicker!). We were to say something about ourselves which defined a positive quality, etc.

I was completely stymied. I finally managed something about "I'm a hard worker." That sounded safe. I waited expectantly, and realized DD2 was even more at a loss than I. She said, "I don't know Mom, tell me something good about me."

My brain whirled, and I was sensing this was important to her. She was going to remember what I said. I was really scared because that was a huge moment for her and I felt like if I didn't get it right, she'd ruminate over it later and feel bad about herself. Yes, I realize, I was being codependent or whatever. I told her sincerely that she was a caring person, that she went out of her way to help others (often to her own detriment), that she was giving of her time and abilities, that she had that energy we always spoke of as missing in our house now that she lives elsewhere, that she lit up the room with her presence, I basically blathered on and floundered and she was laughing and saying, "okay Mom, that's enuf."

Later, dammit, he did it again. He had us turn to the person next to us and tell that person a talent we had. I was able to fall back on my quilting addiction hobby, and I stated to her "I can sew!" She sat there again, mouth agape, and said, "What can I do?" We laughingly agreed that probably illegal talents don't count! Then she pounced on "I can read; I read a LOT." I said "Yes! You do!" and thankfully, the speaker continued on in his talk. Whew!

In retrospect, I could think of so much to tell her, and probably will send her some cards this week with positive things about her that I admire in them.... but he sort of put us on the spot. And it was very insightful for me.

He also talked about who we think or say we are. He pointed out that in program, we identify ourselves "Hi my name is X, and I'm an X." He pointed out the distinction he perceived that this is not WHO we are. Who we are is one thing. Our addiction (or what we are in recovery for) is what we've done. Not who we are.

I kind of liked his way of looking at that.

I am going back next week and visit the small group after the big meeting. They have small groups for several different needs. Addiction, codependency, Alanon, etc, and they also have some divided into women's groups and men's groups.

I'm a big chicken. I mentioned wanting to go to the women's Alanon/Naranon group and DD2's boyfriend said "Why don't you?" I pointed to my forehead and said, "see the sign? The one saying F-E-A-R? It took me forever to start going to the meeting I go to up by my house, which I'm not real fond of....."

He interrupted me to point out (probably you've heard this before, but it was new and impactful to me) that F-E-A-R can stand for "F#%k Everything And Run"......


Face Everything And Recover.

And then he dashed over to the information desk and found out which room the women's Alanon/Naranon group was meeting in. And pointed me towards it.... quite respectfully and helpfully...."for next time"... because we had managed to talk and linger by the coffee so long, they had started and the door was shut.

But they had a nice big picture window. I scoped out the group through the window as I walked by. Small group, no one had a third eye.....

I will be there next Friday night. I won't "try" to be there (thank you dadandmom
). I will honestly do everything in my power to be there. (I think I will also look around for a new meeting close to my house, since I'm not all that crazy about the one I've been attending.)

DD2 likes her job. I found out it's all in-bound calls - which she likes. She wouldn't like having to be that pesky salesperson who interrupts people's dinners to sell something, etc.... These calls are incoming, from people who want more information about the products her company is selling.

She got an extra hour added daily to her schedule, which is great news. She went to get her court card signed at the end of the Lifelines meeting (she arrived late as meeting started at 7 and she got off work at 7) and she found out the court card signer was her boss at work, who assured her that she would make sure she got off work, in the future, in time to get to this meeting on time. Heh-heh!!

A lot of the girls at her sober home work at that telemarketing facility and also attend the meeting at the Crossing, so she is surrounded by folks in program! She was not aware, however, that her boss was at that meeting until she faced her!

I have much to be grateful for today. :)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


Just got this email from DD2 (there is a small computer set up for the girls in the sober home to use for correspondence and applying for jobs on line)....

Hooray!! (she is a bit abbreviated and hasty in her email style, but she was obviously excited and also not feeling well when she wrote it)...

hey, i got a job. i start tomorrow at 9 am for training. my regular
hours will be from 2-7 monday thru friday 8 $ an hour paid every
friday and every two weeks i get commission checks of anywhere from 100-300$ (maybe?) so hopefully things are working out. i think elise is taking me to the ER today because i still don't feel good. its really bad in the morning and it goes away at 10 or 11 all of a sudden until the next morning. it is really weird. so im gonna go make sure its not a cyst or anything. i might change my mind and not go but for now thats the plan. anyways i love you xoxoxo.

I'm hoping that if/when she is in the ER for the suspected bladder infection, she can start the volumes of paperwork that are required to get onto MSI? or some sort of public health benefits program for those with no money, no benefits, etc. We had gone a few weeks ago to the office that "jail" directed us to for that purpose, but at that office, they said she had to go to a hospital in her area (and at that time, she wasn't yet in a sober home) and from that hospital, the process could begin. It's quite a process, but it would just be nice for her to have access to simple antibiotics from time to time, etc.

The dogs are looking at me like I'm nuts because I keep doing a happy dance around my chair. Back to work for me!

Thanks everyone for your prayers and good thoughts! I am so grateful and relieved. We can help with bus passes and fresh veggies and love and encouragement. She can manage the great majority of the rent. This is a huge improvement in her situation and I'm smiling.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Crossing fingers, good thoughts and prayers....

She's getting a bit discouraged.

I did some driving for her one day last week (to probation and job hunting), and she put out tons of resumes....basically wallpapered her immediate area where she lives.

One spot was an upscale restaurant that she hesitated to even go into. The last couple of stops before that restaurant, I had seen her come out with her "I'm so trying not to cry" face on.... no openings, or no felony-friendly positions, etc....

This one, she didn't even want to go in for. But I suggested that she go in and try, just for giggles and grins, just for practice. I suggested that maybe they would ask her something she had not ever been asked previously, and if she wasn't happy about her answer, she'd have one more thing she could practice until she had her answer/delivery down cold.... and the next time she heard that question, she'd be ready to casually and confidently answer it.

She bought that last suggestion and went in. She came out walking all confident and perky.....she got in the car and laid her head on my shoulder and said, "oh Mom, he was sooooooooooo nice!!"

This "he" told her that he was assistant manager and they had just completed their once a month server training program.....BUT.... they had an opening for a hostess.
And that would give her a foot in the door for the next server position (think TIPS!!)

So he had her call back the next day. I mentioned it to my dad on the phone the next day and he said "let's pray for that right now"......

....which always sort of catches me by surprise, but shouldn't, given that he is a preacher/teacher of many many years experience. We concluded our phone call, I hung up, and the phone rang about three minutes later.

It was my daughter, stating she had just hung up from calling "him" at the restaurant.... they wanted her for a second interview.

She had been talking to this assistant manager while my dad was talking to his Higher Power.


Told her about it and she decided it was a God thing..... and she excitedly waited til the next day.

While my father got all his cohorts in five states praying on her behalf.

She called the next day..... and the next..... and the next (yesterday).

Each time, she got put off, asked to call back, and yesterday was told that the person who had been going to leave, had decided to KEEP her job. BUT, would she please call back today at 3 pm.

I mentioned to her that "that is NOT a closed door.....they want you to call back!"

She's trying really hard not to be depressed. She has continued to put in apps all over the place. I'm going down next Tuesday to help her get to a few places further from her house (and see probation) and encourage her a bit, grab coffee and hand out hugs....

She has an interview with a telemarketing place tomorrow.

The job she wants at the restaurant would give her enough to cover her rent and TIPS. We could help a little with food/bus passes. The job at the telemarketing place will only cover a portion of rent. (part time, minimum wage)

We are not doing well financially. We are, for the first time, spending more than we make (robbing our modest savings to pay bills).

(and I've been frugal all my life, no vacations, two new cars in last 25 years, making food from scratch, making cleaning supplies, paying extra on mortgage, etc)

We were set to relocate and semi-retire, in three years, to a place like rural Tennessee.... until the house value fell 50%, the 401Ks tanked, the interest rates plummeted, and my business started the swirling journey into the toilet. Now we're just trying to hold on here....

I'm trying to get more work. It's not a pretty picture in the medical transcription field these days. DH is trying to get more hours at his job....but the economy has struck FedEx too. There are less packages to deliver.

We really really need for her to get this a job. Coming home is not an option, for my mental health's sake and hers. We are not a healthy option for her for many, many reasons.

Please cross fingers, say prayers, think good thoughts for her today at 3 PM....

I'm really trying to stay positive. Wait.... "Dad and Mom" had a post about that. Trying versus doing. Okay. I am going to be positive today!!! So there!! She can do this. At the restaurant, or at the telemarketing place, or where ever the door with her name on it opens!

But a few prayers and good thoughts today at 3 PM can't hurt, okay??!! :)