Friday, August 31, 2012

Quiet Hurts

I just accomplished the dreaded weekly food shopping trip in record time so I should be thrilled, but I am not feeling it. I really miss my children when they are at school. Don't get me wrong, not having to battle down the aisles, four abreast, with constant yammering about this or that was calming, however, I would trade all the calm and quiet for 10 things thrown into my cart without permission any day.  I kept looking around for a distraction all the while cursing those moms who had their children with them because their school does not start until after Labor Day. One mom looked completely overwhelmed as her three little ones were running around and trying to climb into the cart. I wanted to offer to take them for a while so that she could shop in peace but I thought she might think I was crazy and call for help.

Having a high school junior this year is not helping matters either. I am completely obsessed with the fact that next summer will be our last 'free' summer together without the specter of packing for college hanging over our heads (okay, hanging over my head as he is good to go).  I cannot tolerate those moms who look at me as though I have truly stepped over the edge when I say how much I dread his leaving. I am certain you know the type.  They are the ones talking about enjoying watching their children 'soar' and 'grow into amazing, independent young adults filled with promise.' I have been told that I should love each and every stage of my son's development and be proud of his achievements, to encourage him to be his own person. Hogwash!  Hey, I am an Italian mom who wants her children close so that I can be overprotective, do their laundry and feed them...lots and often.

To be honest, I am just reveling in my own selfishness today. I don't want to let him go. You see,  it is not just going away to college.  I am more than acutely aware that once we drop him off at school, his independent life begins and I become but a part of his future. I will not be picking him up at the end of a school day and listening to the stories of the day nor will he be hounding me about what is on the menu for dinner. We won't be sitting together at night and talking nor will he be driving his brother crazy...yes, on some level, I will miss that as well.

My other son told me that he was going to try to be like my oldest so that I would not miss him as much. I know I am not alone as it seems we will all feel the void once he heads off to college.  Some more than others, however, as my little one has already laid claim to his brother's lacrosse pitch back. As they say, perspective is everything.

Friday, August 24, 2012

The Witness

I know you are going to find this unbelievable because I know I did, but I actually testified this morning. Truth be told and as a direct result of all the continuances, this trial had taken on a life of it's own. I was terrified to face the alleged criminal as I had spent countless nights wide awake, and many hours during the day as well, worrying about how much information he might have retained about me and whether or not he might show up my door to steal from me again.  I know how silly that sounds, but once your identity is stolen, you never know what might happen.  I have had countless issues as a result of this theft both with credit card companies and our very own bank. Not to mention charges from my own gas station that I did not make.  He stole so much more from me than my purse and an irreplaceable, perfect color pink Coach wallet (bitter, you are damn right!).  He stole my piece of mind.

Once I survived--barely, as I am wildly claustrophobic--the 22 floor elevator ride, it was a matter of sitting around and waiting to be called to the witness stand. Thankfully, we got to wait outside the courtroom so it was a little less stressful.  When it was my turn to testify, I was escorted into the courtroom by the DA and told to take the witness stand. I won't bore you with all the details, just one. I saw the DA rifling through something on the desk and then she headed toward the witness stand.  Having seen enough legal shows--remember, we are huge 'Suits' fans--on TV, I figured she was going to show me some exhibits. The first was a credit but the second threw me for a loop as it was my license that I had been keeping as a remembrance from where we used to live.  I never thought I would see it again and I could not believe that I was seeing it I the courtroom today. It was surreal. I thought I had regained my composure until the DA asked if I had given the alleged criminal permission to bury them at his house.  Huh?  He saved these items and buried them at his house?  Once I got over the creepiness factor--okay, truth be known, I am so not over that part yet--all I could think about was how just plain stupid it was to bury evidence of a crime in your own backyard. Honestly, I suppose he is not a fan of crime shows because everyone knows not to bury evidence anywhere near your house.  Right?

So this one is behind me, something to cross of my list of things that need to be done. Tonight I have resigned myself to enjoying this accomplishment...I will worry about the next one in November or at least when I get the next subpoena (that would be number 8 for that trial and yes, I am bitter about that as well).

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Stroke of Luck

I think it is fair to say that almost everyone, on some level, would like to be lucky or, at least, think they are. Now I am not talking about a 'win the lottery' kind of lucky, but just your 'run of the mill things are working out for you' sort of feeling. I yearn for that feeling, spend countless time throughout the day trying to imagine how it might feel to be lucky, to have something work out in my favor. I am truly not as negative and whiny as I sound but I am beaten and exhausted from all the struggling and stress. So here is my question...can luck be changed ( and it's obvious correlate...where and how do I start?)?

Before we explore this any further, please let go of the suggestion that I need to be more positive or thankful. Believe me I am more than thankful for my amazing children and more than grateful that they are healthy. I used to be a lot more optimistic until things starting going wrong consistently, never turning around. We cannot catch a break.  Everyone has to handle difficult times but then they eventually move forward, everyone, it seems, except a select few who become mired in the hard times seemingly unable to pull it together and pull through.  Remember Brittany Spears and the head shaving incident?  I kind of get it now. Despite all your effort to turn it around and change the situation, you remain mired there, sometimes sinking even lower than you had ever thought possible.

So how does luck change?  Two people told me that I have bad juju (vibes or spirits) and that a good place to start a change would be to burn sage and cleanse each and every room of my house. Honestly, me-matches-house, not a good combo right now. My effort to rid my house of bad spirits would probably render us all homeless standing next to a pile of ashes. Another friend suggested an exorcist (I do remind myself of Linda Blair of late, totally possessed) but I doubt I will be able to find a priest who will perform the ritual.

So I am stumped. We have prayed, searched, changed our outlook, reduced our standards, made wishes on everything from stars to certain times of the day (my children say ' it is 10:10, make a wish') and still nothing changes.  I have tried to be positive and consistent with my children so that their outlooks are not colored by my own but my little guy asked me once if I really believed all the optimistic sentiment that comes out of my mouth. Truth be told, I would be lying if I told him I did but let's just keep that to ourselves, okay?

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Question Marks

I am not a patient person by nature but I have had to cultivate at least a little patience over the past few years, less for my own self-preservation, but more to set an example and be a role model for my children. Let's face it, what type of parent would I be if I went off half-cocked over every alleged atrocity I feel I have had to deal with on a daily basis? That said, they have seen 'the real me' more often than I would like especially where our 'unemployment in seeming perpetuity' is concerned or my unlucky entanglement with these two trials is concerned as well.

Jury selection for one trial which had previously be continued 5, yes 5, times already was supposed to have started this past Wednesday.  I had even received a lovely email stating that this time (if I was dumb enough to believe it) there would be no more continuances and the trial would be happening as planned. Given all the trouble I have already experienced with the court, I did not believe the email which is the first truly smart thing I have done in a very long time. That said, my lack of confidence in all things legal these days did not for a moment lessen the blow when I learned that this trial would again not go off as planned.  Too many motions, a proposed deal on the table now...whatever.  It still means more waiting, more anxiety, more doubts and more all around frustration.

Two and a half years of legal runaround as a subpoenaed witness in two trials. When I think back to the day that I became a victim when I was robbed (which was two days before my husband lost his job...notice neither of these issues have been resolved to date), never did I think that reporting the crime would victimize me even more. All told, these trials have been continued a total of 12 times. I suppose it really is true, the wheels of justice turn slowly but sometimes they just grind to a halt.

Sunday, August 12, 2012


I am at a loss.  When did my children become so needy?  While I am on the topic, how did they come to believe that what they want to say can be said at any time, regardless of whether or not someone else is speaking or involved in something else?  Specifically, that 'someone else' is usually me.  Sadly, I am actually the source of the problem to some extent as it is I who encouraged them to have opinions and to consider their feelings and needs whenever possible--often to the subjugation of my own feelings and needs.  Now, I seem to have created a monster...or four.

Some days I am so inundated with opinions, thoughts and needs that my mind can barely function on the basics; I find I am stumbling over my own words, forgetting the most obvious ones because there is just so much language flying around in my head. So now that I have identified the problem, how do I make it better you might ask?  I wish I had an answer. One of my biggest issues is that I really love the fact that they are so comfortable with discussing things with me and that they want to share their opinions with me-though maybe not all at the same time might be nice.  I wish they could understand that sometimes less really is more.

My husband thinks I am too lenient and available for them and perhaps he has a point, albeit a small one, but with one child talking about college non-stop, I am all too aware of how quiet this house will be.  One day all too soon, I am going to to wish my beautiful children would be needing me as much as they do right now.  That said, a little quiet might be nice!