April 30, 2006

Family First

Yesterday was a very special day for me family-wise. It was the first time in somewhere between 10-15 years that all of the cousins from my generation got together for a family meal. Growing up, I have extremely fond memories of spending many Saturday nights at my Aunt Mamie's house. Aunt Mamie was my Sita's (grandmother) sister. She would make Lebanese food for the family and we'd spend the whole day and night eating fresh baked Lebanese bread, Kibbi, Hummus, grape leaves, Tabuli, Fatoosh, and more! It was a perfect way to grow up, eating authentic food from our heritage and playing for hours on end with our cousins.

Since we've grown up, and Aunt Mamie grew too old to prepare such wonderful meals, we've stopped getting together for a Lebanese food meal. We still see each other often, and some of our family food appears at each gathering, but it's typically only the easiest to make dishes that we eat now.

A few months shy of her 101st birthday, Aunt Mamie passed away in December. It was at her funeral that the cousins reminsced about our childhood and all of the wonderful food we grew up on and decided that we should all get together once again. Our Aunts could teach us how to make some of the food we love but have never made, and then we would all enjoy the meal together.

That idea came to life yesterday. Twenty-nine adults, nine children, and seven Lebanese dishes.

It's likely a combination of the facts that my Mom is no longer with us, that I'm now a mom and I'm just getting older that make me ache with the desire to be with my family as much as possible. It helps tremendously that the majority of my family is simply wonderful. Don't get me wrong, we have our share of disfunction - but overall, we're a really close family of good and decent people. I want my son to grow up knowing his family. To look back on his childhood with amazing memories of playing with all of his cousins. And I will do everything in my power to give him that experience.

I'm off to eat some leftover Kibbi ... yum!

April 27, 2006

Sleeping in Sacramento!

After a day of obsessing over just what went wrong that resulted in V not wanting to sleep in his own room the night before last, the only conclusion I could come up with was that he was lashing out at the fact that it had been a week since he had spent time with both his mom and dad simultaneously.

Wednesday is typically softball night for me. Unfortunately our game time was 7:30pm last night. Couldn’t have been at a worse time. Too late to bring V with me to the game because the last thing I wanted to do was let him slide on our normal routine. And too early of a game to allow me to go after putting V down for the night. Keeping to the routine, I believed, would be imperative to getting him to sleep in his own bed so I did the only thing someone trying to act like a responsible parent would do. I skipped my softball game last night.

The three of us – mom, dad and V – spent the evening together as a family. Ate together, played outside together, did some errands together. At some point during the evening I mentioned to V that he was going to get to see his favorite cousins tomorrow. No sooner did the words exit my mouth did I question myself for telling him. For the next hour, all I heard was “I want to go see Gus & Maddie”. Then it hit me. Bribery. All parents do it, don’t we? So I told V that he would only get to see his cousins if he was a good boy and slept in his bed all night. He agreed. I was cautiously thrilled. Sneaky, sneaky parents.

Fast forward a couple of hours. Husband and I bathed V and put him to bed. Our normal night-time routine is bath followed by jammies followed by brushing teeth followed by blow dry the hair followed by 10-15 minutes of batting practice followed by prayer book followed by Goodnight Moon. Lights out. Lullaby CD on.

I was praying V couldn’t sense my hesitation – the fact that I was holding my breath waiting to see whether or not we were in for another night of hell. The whole night-time routine unfolded like clockwork. V was quiet during Goodnight Moon, and excitement was building inside of me. Unknowingly I had started saying Goodnight Moon a bit too quickly, so I had to slow myself down. I didn’t want a hair out of place in this routine.

Just as I was finishing “Goodnight stars. Goodnight air. Goodnight noises everywhere”, V sat up in bed and started crying. Oh no. What to do? Panic? Before I knew it, out came the bribe again.

Me: “V, do you want to see Gus and Maddie tomorrow?”

V: “Yes”

Me: “Then you need to sleep in your bed tonight. If you don’t sleep in your bed, we won’t be able to see your cousins tomorrow. Do you understand?”

V: “Yes”

AND THEN HE LAYED DOWN! Without another word! And he didn’t wake up the entire night!

Scorecard stands at V=1, Parents=1. Tie game. We’re hoping to take the lead tonight … although I’m not sure what kind of bribe I’ll come up with next time if we have to go through this again.

April 26, 2006

Sleepless in Sacramento

Last night my little angel who, on a normal night, goes to bed and falls asleep without so much as a peep, turned into devil child. I had been out with some girlfriends for dinner and returned home at about 9:00pm, looking forward to plopping on the sofa next to my husband who has just returned from six days out of state. I was craving a glass of wine and good conversation with him.

Walking in to the house with all the lights on and no one around, my first thought was that someone had kidnapped him. After all, my husband has a great job, is an amazing dad, can fix anything, and washes his own dishes. These kinds of guys are a rare find, so the kidnap scenario really isn’t all that far-fetched. It was only after I noticed that there was no baby gate at the top of the stairs did I realize he was in V’s room. At 9:00pm? Did he cheat and let him stay up late since Mommy wasn’t home? Were they having so much fun that they lost track of time? Unfortunately, no.

Last night our son decided that he only wanted to sleep in Mommy and Daddy’s bed and no where else. Husband tried for an hour before I got home to get him in bed – but the kid can get out of the bed on his own and open his door and leave his room now, so it’s useless to just leave him in there and walk out. He follows right behind us! Because I typically have more luck getting him down on the very rare occasion that this sort of thing happens, I took over at 9:00pm. At 10:00pm, after about twenty renditions of Goodnight Moon, and countless attempts at reasoning with a two-year old (I KNOW what you’re thinking!), I gave in to the exhaustion and V came to bed with us.

At some point during the night Husband woke up and transferred V back to his own bed. What seemed like only five minutes later (but was really about an hour later), V woke up and came back to our room. After another 30 minutes of screaming at the top of his lungs and refusing to lay down in his own bed, he was back in bed with us. Just before 3:00am I found myself nearly falling off my bed because my son had finagled himself in to my space and even though I outweigh him by 100 pounds, he won the war of the bed space. This is a bad, bad sign.

This time it was me who took him back to his room. I put him under his covers, quickly recited Goodnight Moon yet again, and then told him in a very stern voice “do not get out of this bed”. It worked. Don’t worry, I know that it didn’t work because I used a stern voice – it worked because the kid was too exhausted – finally – to fight with me. And there he stayed until he awoke for his day at 7:00am.

I’ve found myself thinking about this all day. What in the world caused this? I don’t think I have it in me for another night of battle. I didn’t sleep well the six nights my husband was gone so I was really, really looking forward to a great night of sleep last night. Instead, I’m now on 7 nights of bad sleep. And I’m officially one cranky bitch right now.

I have no idea what to do – but blogging about it somehow makes me feel better.

Suggestions? Anyone?

April 25, 2006

Wallow Away

Success! I found a way to be alone – all alone – last week while in the height of my depression. It was a simple solution, but it took a dear friend to suggest it because I was too out of my normal element to think it up on my own.

I took Thursday and Friday off work. I took V to daycare all day both days. And I did nothing but sleep, read books, and generally catered to myself. And since myself wasn’t in the best of spirits, I was pretty easy to please. The two alone days were like winning the lottery and exactly what I needed to rekindle my spirit!

V and I had a wonderful weekend – just the two of us. A weekend, I’m convinced, that would have been just awful had I not taken the opportunity to recharge.

Sigh of relief.

It's All in a Look

Now that it’s finally stopped raining, my son and I have gotten back in to the habit of walking to the grocery store. Actually I walk while he “strollers”.

Grocery shopping with a two year old is getting tough. This past weekend was even tougher. To begin with, I’ve been fighting this depression thing so I’ve not been thinking clearly. On a side note, today is the two year anniversary of my mom’s death and I’m excited to report that I’m having a fairly productive day with no bouts of depression so far! Anyway … back to the shopping adventure. As I said, I wasn’t thinking clearly which just has to explain why I went knowingly in to the grocery store unprepared. No snacks for V. No crackers. No cheese. No pretzels. Nothing. It didn’t take long for him to start the “I want a cookie” dance. Under normal circumstances, I would have immediately pulled out an alternative snack to offer him which would have ordinarily put the cookie dance on hold. But I was unprepared.

I’m definitely not one of those mothers who can tune out their whining, crying child while continuing to shop as if nothing is happening. I will, without hesitation, immediately walk out of a store to calm V down before subjecting innocent bystanders to his tantrums. Luckily for me, his tantrums are few and far between (I know, I know, it’s only a matter of time). This past weekend, my head cloudy and not thinking clearly, I relented and bought him a cookie to eat while I continued to shop so that I wouldn’t have to listen to him cry and so that I could finish my grocery shopping. It worked perfectly. He didn’t make another peep as he sat completely engaged in his effort to eat every morsel of his Starbucks Chocolate Chip cookie. Nothing but the best for my little man.

Admittedly I felt a brief bit of guilt for giving in and getting him his cookie. The guilt quickly gave way to my justification process. He had eaten a healthy breakfast, lunch and snack. We ran around outside quite a bit during the day. He was a perfect child all day. Justification. Justification. Justification.

While in the check out line, the 19-year old checker made a comment about how cute V was with chocolate all over his face. Looking down at V, smiling, I agreed. He’s definitely cute. On my way back from the glace down at V, I made eye contact with a woman who had just finished paying for her groceries and was walking past me while headed to her car . In a matter of a half a second, her judgmental look of disgust stabbed me like a knife in the stomach. What was I thinking giving a 2-year old a chocolate chip cookie rather than a healthier alternative?

Without thinking, I reacted. I told V that he had enough of the cookie (it was about ¼ of the way eaten), and took the rest from him and threw it away. He immediately started crying, but I was on my way out of the store so I didn’t mind. The crying only lasted about 10 seconds, so it wasn’t disastrous – but no sooner did the cookie land in the garbage can that I was mad at myself for reacting that way to the woman’s look of disgust. She doesn’t know me and how I raise my son. She doesn’t know how well he ate the rest of the day. She doesn’t know anything about his diet. And what the hell is wrong with a cookie now and then? Why is that so bad all of the sudden? I know, I know .. because we live in a society overrun with obesity. I’m aware of that. And I’m also aware of what foods I expose my son to – both good and bad – and a cookie now and then is not a bad thing. Why should I feel guilty? I shouldn’t! So why did I? I don’t know!!!

All of these thoughts running through my head suddenly halted when I spotted a fancy sports car at the neighborhood car wash. It was a blue convertible with a clean cut man in his mid-thirties climbing in behind the wheel. He began pulling out on to the street just as I was approaching the driveway. Suddenly his wheels screeched as he gunned the engine and got a bit squirrely. We made brief eye contact. This time it was me who shot a complete stranger a look of judgmental disgust. In the same instant, the look on his face communicated an “oops … didn’t mean to do that”. By the time his look registered he was already past me and I was left feeling simply awful about passing judgment in exactly the same way judgment had been passed on me only moments earlier.

So, for the clean cut guy in the fancy blue sports car – I apologize. My lesson has been learned.

April 19, 2006

It's Official

After what seems like six years of non-stop rain, the sun is shining! Today is our third day in a row of sunshine. I’ve been in sort of a funk, blaming it on the dreary weather and doing here-comes-the-sun dances in an effort to get rid of the rain. The dances worked and brought me sun, but I’m afraid my funk is still here. As much as I’ve not wanted to face it, I’m officially depressed.

I’m not surprised that I’m depressed. After all, the two year anniversary of the unexpected death of my mother is just six days away – so I’ve got good reason. I just want it to be over with.

My husband left this morning for a six day stay in Florida with his buddies. The “normal” me would have likely pulled some kind of guilt trip on him for leaving me – alone – with V to take care of, the dogs, and the house all by myself. But the depressed me didn’t put up any fight what-so-ever because, frankly, I want to be alone. I really want to wallow in this depression – hit it full force in an effort to be done with it already. Problem is that I won’t really be alone. I have to take care of V. And the dogs. All of this has made me even more depressed.

Today I had lunch with my lunch bunch. I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned them before, but there’s a group of us that work together and regularly – at least 2 or 3 times a week – eat lunch together as well. I’m older than them by a good ten years. I’m the only married one in the bunch, so I really have no business hanging out with them except for the fact that I love them and enjoy their company.

During a typical lunch bunch gathering, I get to hear all of their stories about going out, seeing movies, taking weekend trips to the city, etc. I love hearing the stories because it keeps me in touch with life as it used to be. Today, however, the stories only depressed me. The topic of discussion turned to our weekend plans. At first I thought I was getting depressed because all of them actually have fun weekend plans and I don’t. But after careful consideration, I realized that my problem is that I really just want to be alone with no plans right now. And that’s not a possibility.

So now I’m faced with the task of trying to figure out how to beat this depression without getting an opportunity to wallow it away. I’ll have to get back to you on that because right now I have no earthly idea of how to tackle this. Stay tuned …

April 12, 2006

How, Exactly, Does This Mommy Thing Work? A Story of Yet Another Panic Attack

Over two years experience as a Mom and I’m still mystified that this job doesn’t require you to pass a test, or get a license. Any ol’ child-abusing crack addict can have a kid – and most do – which is why our world is so incredibly fucked up. But don’t get me started …

As a mom, I don’t seem to fit in. This could be good. Or bad. Jury’s still out. I most certainly don’t fit in with the majority of the moms I know – nor do I fit in with those friends of mine that aren’t yet moms. I seem to have fallen through the cracks somehow and I have no idea how to climb out.

I feel like I need to learn more about this whole Mommy Thing. The problem is:

I don’t watch the news because it depresses me.

I don’t read parenting books or magazines because they don’t know what’s best for me, my child, and our individual situation.

I don’t belong to a Mother’s Group because – I’ve tried twice – and the mothers annoy me with their never-ending talk of their wonderful kids, their amazing husbands, their designer bags and fancy-ass cars.

The only source of advice that I crave is my mother’s. Unfortunately, she passed away not long after my son was born, so I’m screwed.

Ninety-nine percent of the time I’m confident in my parental skills. I mean, my son is one of the best-natured, happiest, easy-going kids you’ll ever meet. I may not be doing everything right, but at least I’ve not messed up too badly - yet. So, for the most part I think I’m doing okay however I think these first two years have been the easy part and it won’t be too long before I’m in big trouble.

A few things I’m panicked about at the moment:

1. I’ve not given much, if any, thought to where my son will go to kindergarten. He’s TWO! Do I really have to decide that NOW?

2. Potty Training – it just doesn’t sound like any fun. I haven’t yet started because he’s not shown any interest – so get off my back!

3. Will my son have friends to play with in our neighborhood? We live in a wonderful, desirable, older neighborhood with tree-lined streets and fantastic homes. Problem is that there aren’t many families around us – and even fewer with small children. Are we bad parents if we choose a mature neighborhood over one filled with young families? Is that fair to our children?

I don’t know the answers to these and many other questions. I’m sure they’ll come to me at some point, some how. In the meantime, I’ll just take this motherhood a day at a time and pray to my mom to give me big-fat-in-your-face signs when I’m screwing things up.

April 07, 2006

A Bunch of Gamblin' Gals

Once a month, rain or shine, a group of ten women convene over food, drinks, and a game. It’s the Poker Gals. At last night’s gathering we celebrated our three year anniversary. In order for one of to miss out on the first Thursday of the month, we have to have a really, really good reason. It’s just one event that is too much fun – and too important to us as women - to consider missing.

I’ve never been a part of any other ladies poker group, so I’m not sure if they are all as wonderful as mine, but if they are … then, WOW.

The nine other women that make up my group are all unique from one another – but we just click. We have different interests, many of us are at different places in our lives, we have different circles of friends. We include a writer, a social worker, a window sales person (who tells us she sells “sunshine”! – I just love that!), a project manager, an auditor, an accountant, a convention services manager, a teacher, and a human resource manager. Seven of us are married. One is engaged. Three of us are mothers. Two of us are trying to conceive.

First and foremost, our monthly gathering is about catching up with one another. I see most of these women only at Poker Night – and special occasions – but mostly just at Poker Night. From the moment we walk in the door of whom ever is hosting that month, the laughter and chatter start and it doesn’t slow down until the clock strikes 10:00pm and we all head home. We always play at least one hand of poker … but we rarely make it past four or five hands because the conversation just gets too engaging and for some reason we can’t play poker and talk at the same time!

What I love most about this group of women is that – even though I’m not incredibly close to any of them – I can talk with them about anything. ANYTHING. Our topics of conversation are all over the board, but are never dull. To give you an idea, here are the topics that came up just last night – each one dissected and analyzed in detail:

  • Wedding planning (the engaged gal is NEWLY engaged, so it HAD to be discussed)
  • Farting in public
  • Care of our bikini area. Wax or no wax? Laser hair removal? Brazilian? How much do we have to shave and trim, and how often? How hairy are we, really?
  • Do Amy's boobs look fake? She actually showed us so we could discuss.
  • Why is it so difficult to shave your knees? Does anyone know a fool proof method?
  • Our experiences with Psychic Readings
  • When one of our parents remarries after the death of their spouse

I adore these women and am so blessed to have them in my life. They are like a breath of fresh air. I hope they are each in my life, for at least once a month, for many years to come. I will do whatever I can to make sure our group stays in tact. You can bet on that.

April 04, 2006

April's Dear V

Today you are two years and four months old – a third of the way through your “terrible twos” which, luckily, have not been terrible at all. It’s the threes I’m told I need to really worry about …

You are talking like a little man now, stringing three sentences together on a regular basis. “Look at my car, Mama”, “The car is broken”, “I fixed the car, Mama”.

It’s so much fun to have little conversations with you! I’ve been trying to video tape you so that you can look back at yourself 20 years from now and hear how cute you sounded, but every time I turn on the video camera, all you want to do is see yourself in the little display. You forget about everything except the fact that you’re on camera, so I’ve temporarily given up hope of taping you.

You are currently obsessed with looking at yourself. In the mirror, on the video camera, on the digital camera. Just this morning you picked up mommy’s “cramurah” and told me to take a picture of you. Saying “cheeeeese” with the biggest cheesy grin ever, you stood there proudly. As soon as the picture took, you said “I want to see” – “there’s V!!!”

You still love baseball.

You’ve taken to golf quite a bit. Papa babysat you one night last month and he must have showed you how to putt, and you’ve been putting and golfing every day since.

Picking your nose, or “nose picky” as you refer to it, is a recently added obsession. Sigh.

You can now count to ten, although you still occasionally forget about seven and immediately jump from ten to fourteen.

I had a brilliant mama moment this month! It’s regarding your obsession with baseball. You always want to play it in the house because it’s been too darn rainy to go outside. Problem is that you tend to lose of the “house friendly” baseballs, and you hit so hard that I’m afraid you’re going to break something. My brilliant mama moment came to me when we were visiting your Auntie Gail and Uncle Gary last weekend. I forgot your baseball and bat and you were not happy with me. So, I showed you how to pretend you were holding a bat, and I pretended to throw you a ball. You then automatically pretended to hit it and I pretended that you hit a home run! You loved it – and we played pretend baseball for what seemed like hours. We’ve played every day since then too. And nothing’s been broken.

Our month was busy with lots of exciting activity. Your cousins Gus and Maddie came and spent the weekend with us. You LOVED the time you spent playing with them. We had Mike, Yvette, Steve, Michelle, Charlie and Uncle Tony over for dinner while Gus and Maddie were in town – so you were surrounded by family. We also went to the zoo. You loved the snakes.

We spent a weekend at Auntie Gail & Uncle Gary’s. We had lots of visitors there – all of which came to see you! Danny and his parents, Ernie and Anna, and Barbara and Jim. It was a non-stop weekend, which you loved. You especially loved spending time at the Children’s Discovery Museum!

This past weekend you got to see Grandma and Grandpa G, Uncle Rocky, Uncle Frank and your cousin Cody. We spent a few hours with them and had dinner. Took you awhile to warm up, but once you were comfortable, you played like crazy! We also saw Papa and his girlfriend this past weekend … that’s when we received the news that they are engaged.

As I mentioned in the beginning of this post, your twos have not been too terrible. You’re certainly learning to test your dad and I. For whatever reason, you think it’s very, very funny to kick me while I’m trying to change your diaper or get you dressed. For the record: it’s not funny.

Recently you’ve started crying for everything you want. “I want a gramma cracker” – crying. “I want my milk” – crying. “I want my shoes off” – crying. Actual tears. We’re working through it and are trying to teach you that you don’t get the things you want by crying and whining. Good luck to us.

I would honestly have to say those are the only two annoying habits you’ve picked up within the last month. Of course, there have been days where you’ve not wanted to eat, where you’ve thrown your toys, where you won’t do anything I ask – but I’ve found that you are typically a fantastic kid that gets a bit out of sorts when he’s tired or not feeling well. Otherwise, you’re just perfect!

One particularly wonderful habit you’ve picked up in the last month is hugging and kissing me … lots. You love to crawl on my lap in a little ball and hug me tightly, kissing me ever so softly. It’s an amazing feeling and makes me realize that I’m the luckiest mom on Earth.

I am truly blessed to have you in my life, V.

Love, Mom

April 03, 2006

Road Rage

Here we are – the beginning of April – a full two weeks in to the Spring season and we’ve yet to see more than about an hour of sunshine. Excuse me? Did someone pack up my things and move me to Seattle without telling me??

I think the never-ending amount of rainfall has caused people in this town to lose it. Seriously. A woman was killed at a gas station yesterday after an altercation with the man at the pump next to her. She didn’t know him. They argued. She’s dead.

Last night my husband and I were driving home from visiting family at about 8:30pm. It was raining – again. Actually, it was raining – still. We were in the far right-hand lane and cars were merging in to our lane. One such merging car neglected to yield the right of way to oncoming traffic, and tried to cut us off and merge in front of us. He didn’t make it because it wasn’t safe. We initially thought he just didn’t see us, so my husband beeped the horn to let him know we were there.

Evidently he did see us and wasn’t happy about the fact that he had to yield to us. He aggressively drove up next to us, his passenger rolled down the window and threw a hard object at us. Thank God it didn’t hit the window as it would have shattered it.

My husband instinctively followed the car to get his license plate and had me dial 911. When he realized we were following him, he tried to get us to rear-end him on the freeway. When he realized my husband was keeping a safe enough distance to keep that from occurring, he pulled over to the side of the freeway. We didn’t pull over – we drove by slow enough to rattle off the license plate to the 911 dispatcher and then kept going.

What in the hell were we thinking? I barely slept last night questioning our motives. It was one of the most stupid things we have ever done. The freak could have had a gun. Our son, who was asleep in his car seat, could have been harmed. Any of us could have been killed. We could have injured other people had the asshole caused us to lose control of our car. Any number of awful scenarios could have played out and we would have forever been kicking ourselves square in the ass. What in the hell were we thinking??

The car has a decent sized dent about three inches below the driver-side window. My husband told me not to worry, that we’d get it fixed. But I don’t want to fix it. I want an in-your-face reminder every time I get in that car that it’s just not worth it. That asshole will get his in due time. I have to believe that. But I will never again put my child in harms way trying to play cop and robber.

I checked the forecast this afternoon. Rain, rain and more rain. I think I’ll stay off the freeway until the sun shines again.

April 02, 2006

Still Grieving

This month marks the two year anniversary of the death of my mother. Rarely a day goes by that she's not in my thoughts, but as the two year anniversary grows closer I'm finding that I'm thinking about her much more often each day.

A couple of weeks ago I was channel surfing one night and came across "John Edward: Cross Country". For those of you that don't know who he is, he's a medium. After my grandmother passed away unexpectedly, my mom and I would occasionally watch John Edward together because we found that a sense of peace would come over us concerning the loss of my grandmother - my mother's mom - after listening to John connect with those that had passed. Watching his shows, my mom and I truly wanted to believe - but having never studied the subject, nor having ever been read, and not knowing anyone that had - I must admit that as much as I wanted to believe I would keep reminding myself that this was a television show ... entertainment.

My grief and curiousity got the best of me last week when a co-worker of mine told me about a friend of hers who is a medium. I called her two days ago. And I was read. Not 30 seconds in to the reading, it became very real for me. I told her that I wanted to connect with both my mother and my grandmother. She told me both were present and she wanted to know which one was the short petite woman (my grandmother was 4 foot 11) and which was the one with enourmous bossoms (definitely my mother).

The medium and I spoke for nearly an hour. Many of the things she brought up were dead-on ... excuse the pun. I hung up the phone feeling elated, excited and at peace. I wanted to tell everyone, but I can't. Most people in my family would likely laugh at me if I told them I spoke with a medium. So, for now, it's my little secret.

I was feeling very happy about my decision to contact a medium because of the sense of peace it brought me about my mother.

It lasted just over 48 hours.

Tonight I went to visit my dad and was informed that he and his girlfriend of six months are engaged to be married. Sigh .... Ouch. On the one hand, I'm very happy for my dad. His girlfriend is absolutely fantastic. I couldn't have picked a better match. She's fun, she's intelligent, she's in his age range rather than mine, she's a successfull attorney which means no worries about a gold digger. I could go on. She really is a wonderful, wonderful lady.

But. And I feel so guilty about saying But. But ...

But it's been less than two years since my mom's death.
But does that really matter?

But they've only known each other for six months.
But does that really matter? I mean, they're not getting any younger so if they know they want to be together, why should they wait?

My husband tells me that I need to support my dad. I DO support my dad but I think that my feelings are hurt that he didn’t discuss this with me beforehand. Not that he needs my permission, he doesn’t. Nor does he need my blessing. But his failure to understand that this union changes our family – of which I am a member - has me a little pissed off. Holidays will never be the same. That’s not a bad thing so long as our family and our traditions don’t get swallowed up by her family and their traditions.

It’s happening this Easter. Whereas we typically have a quiet Easter dinner – just the seven of us – we’re now heading to an Easter brunch at her son’s house with over 30 people that we don’t know. I think I’m sounding more negative than I intend. I really don’t care about Easter and 30 people. I’m actually looking forward to meeting her family, her children and her grandchildren. I’m pretty sure that V will love having so many kids around to play with – so it’s all good.

But don’t mess too much with my family traditions come Thanksgiving or Christmas. My claws will show themselves if that starts to happen. I only pray that if that should happen that I can be calm and collected, rather than a raving bitch that is acting like she’s 13 years old.

Okay, thanks for letting me vent.
Contrary to how this may have read, I really am happy for my dad and I really do adore his girlfriend. Er. Um. I mean fiancé.

It will just take some getting used to.