Sunday, May 08, 2005

Pee, Poop and Pizza Boxes

Warning: Major Rant...

First of all, I was going to name this chapter "Piss, Shit, and Pizza Boxes", but I then thought that might offend someone's sensibilities. Then I thought "Offending sensibilities...there's a concept to explore!" But that is really not where I am right now, and besides, my current choice is way more alliterative.

I woke today to the sound of my daughter's dog barking it's head off. We are babysitting him this weekend because her boyfriend is in Las Vegas and she is mostly staying here. Of course, last night being Saturday, she went out with her pals and will not show up here until later today. I tried to introduce the concept of the boarding kennel yesterday when we began discussing her impending trip to New Orleans with said boyfriend. She is really looking forward to this because she thinks he may propose. Propose? All they talk about it getting married, when, if and how, and they have been basically living together for almost two years. I don't get the significance of the formal "Proposal", especially since nowadays every body does what ever they want whenever they want, contracts, promises, vows, etc. not withstanding.

Anyway, the boarding kennel idea was drowned in the sea of facts regarding whether she would actually be gone for an entire week versus a mere extended weekend. And my misgivings about wanting to spend an extended period of time with her three year old, her dog, my three other grandkids, my dog, various pets and other disfunctional members of this family that will remain unnamed, went by the boards.

So, then when I woke up today:

After I put last night's pizza boxes into the recycling bin, I found three pees and two poos in the dining room. Of course, that corner of the dining room is covered every night with half a package of puppy training potty pads cuz our cocker spaniel still has occasional accidents,( or spite pees, but that is another story) so this morning's distribution of canine bodily waste was almost all, maybe about ninety three percent, on the potty pads. So, while I was picking them up, I mentioned to my husband, who was nearby, and God bless his heart, had already given grandson #2 his breakfast, "Did you see all these pees and poos?" He replied that he had seen them and, I of course had to start in about how much longer it would have to sit in the dining room before it got picked up (By ME being implicit). So of course he reminded me that that was why the potty pads were there. And I began ranting, under my breath, but not COMPLETELY inaudibly, on how the potty pads would just be layered ad infinitum did I not come out to dispose of them, and how, when the urine leaked over the edge of the potty pad, it eventually found its way under the three layers of polyurethane on the beautiful hardwood floors that took two solid years to install, and caused said wood to swell and turn black in a very unattractive manner.

So, as that rant increased in volume and emotional content, Louie fled to the yard to mow like a son of a bitch. I hope he realizes that the anger I generate in him increases his energy level, causing him to complete these chores amazingly quickly. But then, quickness is not his goal as the lawn and the swimming pool are only there so he can keep busy enough to not have to wallpaper or install toilets or clean the garage. My theory anyway.

So then I went out to the deck, or, as I so quaintly refer to it, in my charming grandmotherly way, the back porch. There I proceded to pick up some more defecations that had accumulated since I had performed that task yesterday. I put aside my worries about the fact that apparently one of the dogs seemed to be having a little stomach distress, and scraped and bleached and disposed. This involved only one trip to the basement to get more paper towels, during which time, I efficiently filled the washer and folded a few items of clothing.

By this time it was 8:45 a.m. and I had to hurry to put a "cuter" outfit on grandson#2 cuz his paternal grandmother was going to pick him up at 9:00 a.m. to celebrate Mother's Day at a "Brunch" with her mom and her kids. They did this last year and I cried almost all day and went to Denny's with my younger daughter. So, Grandma Sue just called to say she was too busy to pick Ben up, so he will be here today. So I will have his adorableness to enjoy and it is sunny and warm and I have lots of beautiful new flowers to put in. Now I am going to try to stop crying long enough to call my mom and wish her Happy Mother's Day. In my book, the ultimate oxymoron.

Friday, May 06, 2005

Further Musings on Crime

It seems to be an effective parent, which I no longer want to be, I will have to go to law school.

My older daughter's ex is in jail. I do not know why fetishism is a crime and how serious a crime it is. I think, in order to provide my grandson with any kind of an explanation as to why his dad is incarcerated, I should have a working knowledge of wtf is going on. I was in discussions with the imprisoned person's sister, but apparently I overstepped my specified place in the situation, and they are no longer speaking to me about it. So I made up a little story about how Billy's dad went to visit his neighbor and, for some reason, this time she did not want to visit with him, and she became angry and called the police. He seems to have bought that. But, seeing him trying to deal with that, along with being abandoned by his mother, I have asked the schools to provide him with a little psychological counseling.

To further complicate my feelings about this situation, my older daughter's current boyfriend was recently arrested and is in the Cook County Jail with no bond. We have not even bothered to discuss this with her son. He barely knows Jody, the felon, having met him but once or twice, and I really think seeing this pattern in his mother's life will be overwhelming for him, especially considering the time frame. This has all happened in the last month.

I dare not muse, even momentarily, on why my daughter chooses companions of this type. But, it is definitely a pattern. Two former companions also spent time in jail, all, of course, for varying reasons. My wise older brother suggested that I think of it as poor choices on her part. I think, if she wants to correct this pattern, she needs to find answers within herself, preferably with a professional counselor helping her. But of course she would first need to get rid of the notion that she is a hapless bystander in life. And that ain't gonna happen for awhile...

So, when she first moved out, her son asked if he could have her room, a perfectly wonderful reaction in my book, and I am going to go out, right now, and by some beautiful blue paint for that room. Flat surfaces once again call to me.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

Crime and Parenthood

Am I a "victim" or a "control freak"? I am going to have to go back to talking to the psychologist and ask my shrink to up my meds. I slept last night and that is so wonderful.

I am overwhelmed, as usual. On the days when I don't have two or more commitments, and I am so looking forward to having some time for myself, I walk around the house, flitting from project to project, unable to focus or rest, and accomplishing little or nothing.

I am 61 and my husband is 67. He has a bunch of metal parts in his heart and I have a bunch of metal parts in my knees. We are faced with raising an 8 year old that is a complete bundle of problems. I cannot see laying on my death bed wondering if he has a clean pair of socks to wear to school tomorrow. I have mentioned to his mother that she needs to make arrangements to move back to this county and take care of her son. I realize that will probably not happen, and even if she provides a home for him, the care part is an unreasonable expectation.

Am I in this position because I have tried to keep my kids under my control and crippled them for ever being able to take care of themselves? Or am I using all these problems other people have to keep myself from living my own life and making decisions for my own welfare? Or is every one just taking advantage of poor muddled me? I know every time I have to come to a decision about my own health or welfare it takes months of rumination. I also am painfully aware that the decision making and organization part of my brain is untrained and ignored.

Beside making a concerted effort, sort of in the form of a resolution, to organize the material part of my existance, I am not improving my life or anyone else's by much lately.

I have been making an effort to make my grandson be more of a presence in his father's life and this seemed to be working out well. I had a lot of cooperation from his paternal aunt and grandparents. We had hoped that when Bill reached high school age he could live with his dad. Then, last week, the sheriff called to tell me that Billy's dad was in jail for a sex crime.

The sheriff misspoke about the type of crime it was, causing lots of fear and confusion. When that part was cleared up, and we realized it did not directly affect Billy, we all breathed a sigh of relief. Someone mentioned to Bill that his dad was in jail and I was able to give Bill a sort of simplified version of what happened that seemed to satisfy him and perhaps consoled him a bit. We are definitely consoled by the fact that is was not pedophilia as the sheriff first stated.

But the fact remains that Bill and his dad are undoubtedly NOT going to be doing much father son bonding in the future. So that tiny glimmer of hope for MY future has been extinguished and I am back to living somewhat reluctantly in the day to day.

I am feeling like the future would not seem so scary if I was able to count on some kind of plan being in place. I am always telling my kids and grandkids that they are responsible for themselves and their own welfare and well-being, and I guess all I can do is hold myself up as a bad example. Maybe I do not need to point the finger of blame at anyone for this mess. Maybe I just need to go to the laundry room and make sure the clean clothes are all put in the right drawers.