double whammy

Most of the people I know share a birthday. Weird.

Andy, you're up first, since I kind of like you more right now.

Today is Andy's 30-somethingth birthday. 36 maybe? Close, I think. Andy, I am totally glad you were born. You have been the strangest sort of e-friend to me. Actually, you were my first. E-friend , that is...don't go getting any funny ideas here, kids.

I started to read his blog a few years ago and found out on, oh, day one that he his about the funniest fucking person I could ever hope to know. He started reading my sad little blog I don't know how much later and here we are today. Andy is smart and funny and nice underneath it all. He does sort of have this thing for picking on people who aren't quite as smart as him in their comment sections, but we will forgive him. Nobody's perfect. Andy is a great dad and I can only gather a great husband and a fabulous sort of friend. He spends way too many a long night chatting online with me* talking me through all this shit. Every few days I had an email from him while I was summering in Phoenix**, just checking in to see how I was. He goes to great lengths to pretend that he is pretending to have a blog-crush on me, just to give me something to smile about. He says almost completely inappropriate things to me, just to make me giggle a bit. He asks about my kids, has managed to pop into my bar a few times, pays attention to things about me, says flattering sorts of things on occasion, does all those little things that your friends do. And we met online. It amazes me.

Agentti Andy, I am ludicrously lucky to be your friend. Thank you for your time, for the kindness, for the laughter, for the blogging, for all of it. Happy birthday.

And now, onto the doosie.

Josh, I met you 40 pounds ago, 11 1/2 years ago, when I was 20 and you were almost 23, before I had tattoos or hips. I remember the first time I saw you. I walked past you at the bar I worked at and my uterus immediately ached. The only thing I could think was "babies". You were a great big fat sort of pain in my ass for about a year, with the whole on-again-off-again thing, and then things settled down a bit an then they unsettled significantly with the introduction of our little B. You drank a lot back then. You hurt me in unimaginable ways and I stuck around, barely, because I knew that deep down there was something worth waiting for. When T rolled around you were beyond miserable and I left you for the first time and I cannot even describe the kind of pain that caused me. I was still waiting and hoping for the man I knew was in there to surface. I came back, we did alright for a while and then the girls and the DUI's and the jailtime started. I left, again, and that time it wasn't so bad. Except that you had figured something out and started fixing your life. I came back, again, to a little apartment in Denver with you and the boys and things kind of sorted themselves out. You had your bad bits, I had my bad bits, but we were starting to really learn about each other. We had 3 pretty decent years. And then there was L, and then there was Canada and the relapse and the rest, well, that would be, as they say, history.

I guess my point is that I did a lot of waiting for something I thought you would be, and it turns out that what I was waiting for I got. I got it three times over. I may or may not think you are the greatest sort of man, and we may never speak more than the 5 angry words we do now every Sunday, but I positively could not go one single minute of the rest of my life without your children. You, by accident, gave me the greatest gifts I will ever, ever receive in my whole life and I will never not be grateful to you for them. We have, hands down, the most fabulous children the world has ever known, and it ain't all my genes in there. I understand now that all my waiting was for them. We put each other though a world of hurt to get them, but every minute was worth it because I have the very best parts of you all rolled up into sweet little moderately smelly packages. They have your hair and your eyes and your dry sense of humor and your love of the History Channel and the Olympics and your horrid temper and your hands and your taste in clothes and your penchant for spending way too much time on the toilet. They are reminders of you, but reminders of the good parts. The parts I miss.

This is the first year since I was legal that I will not spend your birthday with you. I hate that it is a holiday and so the whole day is a constant reminder of the loss of you in my life. I have no idea what you are up to today, but I hope that you have a fine sort of day. We will be here, getting on with the very serious business of trick-or-treating, getting on without you. It will be weird and sad but we will figure it out. I hope you do, too.

Happy birthday, baby.

*That sounds exactly as hot as it is.
**That's what I have decided to call my great North American tour of '06. Summering. Sounds fun, don't it?

unsolicited advice

So the next time you're feeling a bit blue, know what you should do? You should get your tired ass out of bed early, go hang out with your friends for a while and then throw the kids in the car and head down to your local version of Six Flags. Ours is Six Flags Elitch Gardens, and there is a long story behind it, but I don't really care enough to tell you all about it. I care about YOU, just not the story so much. Google it. Sufficed to say that the original, family owned Elitch Gardens rocked the Kasbah and was a great place to pick up chicks. If you were 13. They had this tree that had like 50 years of bubble gum stuck to it. You were supposed to contribute every time you passed, and god knows I gave my share. I think that tree got turned into a Baby Gap or something.

Anyway, no mere mortal could have passed up 75 degrees and sunny today, and I am only that, so we went.

Fab. U. Lous.

My kids brought their best buddy and his dad and we had a glorious sort of day. The dad took the big boys on the big coasters and T and I had time to ourselves, which we spent riding kiddy coasters. The weather was great, the company fine, and life is good again. For reals.




5 step program

So, what are those pesky little 5 stages of grief again? Denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

Hmmm.

I spent the last 10 years in the denial stage. Check. I have spent a good bit of that time bouncing in and out of the bargaining phase. Check check. Angry I seem to have worked through in a day or two. Check check check. That leaves the last two. The worst two.

I think I am teetering between the two right now. I am craving more sleep than I ever do while getting less than I ever do. Right now it's a quarter to three. I should be snoring. But no, I'm all sad and shit.

I think the acceptance leads to the depression. The more I come to terms with this whole thing, this whole not being married thing, the sadder I get about it. It's not so much that I miss him per say, it's just that I miss the company, the consistency, the comfort. I mean, maybe he wasn't coming home until 6 in the morning, but he got there. I could occasionally get him to play a hand of cards with me or tuck the kids in so I could go type on the computer or something. He was just around. There was a guy who smelled pretty dang good and I got to smell him every day. I miss that. There was someone to eat the dinner I cooked or notice that I was parting my hair the other way and now there is only this huge responsibility and nothing else. I am always frantic now and constantly exhausted and there is no real relief in sight. Not for at least 17 more years.

I'm not saying I want him back, because god knows I don't and I am truly happier away from him; I just really hate the alone part of this. One IS the loneliest number. I like being a part of a whole, I like the whole sharing my life thing. I was really good at being married. And the painful bit, the really depressing bit, is that I get it that this is what it is and I have no option but to suck it up and take it. I accept that, and it depresses me.

I hate being depressed.

I will wake up tomorrow and convince myself again that life is great and that I couldn't be happier and in a few days or maybe weeks I will again remember that I am lying because I am good at lying to you but frighteningly amazing at lying to myself and you will have to read another whiney post. Because that's my cycle. But for tonight, this is how I am. This is my honest little blog entry. I am not great and I could be a hell of a lot happier.

But I'm kinda betting I will be eventually.

Isn't Halloween on TUESDAY?

My guys at my bar found some quote Sweet unquote Priest costumes to wear to work tonight. They, being dirty, dirty birds decided that we all should dress in like-minded outfits. My pleas for alter boy costumes were quickly shot down and trumped by the bah-rilliant idea to dress us all up as trampy little girls with pigtails, plaid skirts and some serious issues revolving around our Lord and Savior.

Let me share with you why I hate this idea.

One: I just dropped $50 on a skirt I will never, ever wear again, unless, of course, sometime far from now I find a boy who's into that sort of thing. Maybe I'll hold onto it.

Two: My bar is full of couches and tables not much higher than you will find in a good Japanese restaurant. My point is that I spend the majority of my night bent almost all the way over. My skirt barely clears my undies. Barely.

Three: Pigtails are for children. Period. I have ridiculously fabulous hair and the last thing I feel like doing is pulling it up like Pippi freaking Longstocking.

I did, however, NEED the skin tight white shirt and the black bra, so that's worked out ok for me. Otherwise, I am beyond perturbed about this whole thing.

I realize that this post will probably compel a few of you to come to my bar tonight. Bygones. I had better make $5,000 tonight. Argh.