Here’s Looking At You…

First, I’m admitting to something. A deep, dark secret, although I will bet good money that many of you do just what I do.

When I’m out walking, I like to look into the windows of my neighbors homes.

I don’t mean that I actively maneuver myself through their landscape, stealthly hopping from tree to large bush through groundcover and low perennials just to pop up like a creepy Peeping Jane outside their window.

I stay on the public sidewalk, I promise. It just so happens that the homes in my neighborhood have relatively small, shallow front lawns, which means that the homes conveniently sit rather close to those same public sidewalks. Folks around here on a routine basis do not close their blinds or curtains. That fact allows my curiousity to flourish unchecked, and so, as I stroll on by, I will glance briefly toward the window and then if it appears that no one inside is strategically positioned near the window I will slow my gait and look freely.

I mean they really are giving me an open invitation if you think about it:

Blinds not only open but raised high.

No animals posted near the windows that might alert anyone inside to my presence.

Sometimes, some awfully interesting stuff that is just begging to be looked at.

For instance, one block over is an interesting old home that has literally no window coverings at all. A table saw sits on their front porch, just in front of an old mattress. Black garbage bags have been tossed haphazardly around the dead lawn. I can easily see that a refrigerator sits in what should be the living room. Interior doors are stacked here and there. On occasion, but not since last summer, two youngish men often sat in lawn chairs on the front walk, sipping wine, playing guitar and tossing twigs into a fire pit. That last part I can’t explain, nor can I explain why this house renovation (my conclusion after seeing all the work-in-progress-rooms through the windows) seems to have stalled.

Yes, I am really good at gathering a lot of information in the 5-10 seconds it takes me to walk past a home.

Farther down the street is what I call The Chihuly Window. This old brick home has well manicured landscaping, but the eye-catching feature is their very large picture window. It is full of glass shelving and what is clearly Chihuly glass art pieces, (or maybe really impressive imitations). I dare you to click that link then hit the “price” tab. Mr. Chihuly is well paid indeed.

Mostly I just enjoy looking at how my neighbors have decided to plant their gardens and landscapes and how they have chosen to outfit their front porches. We have a lot of front porches in this community and I really can’t help that the homes also have very large front windows that look out over those porches. My guess is that if they have nice gardens, and neatly arranged and attractive decor on their porches, then it must follow that I might see some nice things inside their living spaces as well. So yes, I look.

Now, to the real purpose of this post.

My neighbor, whose home I look upon when I look out of my own front window, lives alone in a large older home. Front porch- check. Large windows- check. An odd addition off the backside of the house, again with large windows- check. Blinds and curtains never closed- check. So when I walk, and head south, this house is just begging me to look.

I’ve seen her kitties inside. I can see into the original living room and even see all the claw marks on the leather couch that the cats obviously use as a scratching post. I’ve seen inside the family room with the large TV, her recliner and her fancy Victorian lampshade that adorns a tall lamp next to her recliner. I can only surmise that she uses this room as her main living area because I’ve seen other things as well. Lots and lots of things.

Piles and piles of newspapers, documents, and magazines sitting on tables and chairs and furniture that fills the older part of the home. Clothing draped here and there and everywhere. Books and knickknacks and glassware and collections of ephemera that range from country decor, to Victorian bric-a-brac, to colored glass bottles. Boxes of who-knows-what. Household appliances. At least one bicycle. Hutches and cabinets that are filled with stuff. Walls that are filled with art.

All of this is easy to see from the sidewalk. What I can’t see, and what I wonder about, is her upstairs. What might be taking up space up there? My guess is that there are at least four bedrooms. I ask myself if this lady could be a hoarder. Her yard is very large, and well cared for. She has a service. Her carport does have a collection of junk(?) leaving just enough room for her car to squeeze in. There’s a mystery shed on her property line that I park my car next to. Clean on the outside, never opened.

Okay, I do understand that none of this is really my business, but it’s so hard not to speculate. I bet you would too if you walked by her windows. I’ve lived here about 9 months and the stacks have grown, slowly yes, but grown since I moved in. If she is a hoarder, I would call her a relatively neat one, even rather organized at this point.

All that paper worries me though, along with what might be upstairs. A small fire would grow enormous very quickly with the fuel that is sitting in those rooms.

So now it’s true confession time. When you are out exercising or walking the dog, or whatever it is you might do around your neighborhood, do you take a peek? What’s the most interesting thing that you’ve ever seen inside your neighbors window?

 

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“What’s In A Name…”

“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose

By any other name would smell as sweet.”

There’s your cultural lesson folks- Shakespeare has Juliet utter these lines, among others, as she contemplates the meaningless nature of a name. In this case, we know she is focused on the name Montague. We also know how that story ends because apparently, names do mean a whole lot if you happen to be a Montague’s or a Capulet.

No feuding here, just some interesting baby names that have come up at work lately. Three in fact, that have the potential to carry weight for the little people who possess them.

The medical system that I am contracted with serves a diverse population. We have large numbers of Hispanic families. We have equally large numbers of families who are Muslim. We have Latin families. The surrounding community houses a growing number of families from Russia and the Ukraine. We serve numerous Asian families, with the largest numbers being from East and Southeast Asia. Each time that I meet a family with any of these ethnic backgrounds, I try to tuck away in my head some of the specific cultural formalities they often follow regarding naming their babies.

Mother’s surname is often combined with the babies father’s surname, but depending on the culture, it must be in a very specific way. Some babies are named only after a specific number of days have passed after birth. Some babies will be given a surname different from either mom or dad. It’s complicated and when I come to feel that I’m finally getting a handle on some of the patterns an entirely new one pops up.

Babies given name isn’t always predictable. I’ve had parents literally make up the spelling of a common name just to give their child a unique, and often impossible to spell, first name. I am learning not to make cultural assumptions either. I meet a mother and father from Ukraine who are named Yuri and Lyudmila, and expect to hear a baby name that somehow reflects their background and culture. I am not surprised anymore when those parents choose to name their son Thomas, or their daughter Amber.

With that in mind, I really wasn’t surprised today when I screened Celine Dion.

Mom and dad are from Vietnam. Their English is actually quite good. In fact, dad jumped right into spelling names for me without my even asking. We came to babies name and from across the room I heard “C-E-L-I-N-E.” Because I was trying to listen closely and double check each letter as he spoke I really didn’t register the actual name he had just spelled for me. As I began to speak each letter back to him for verification he quickly added,
“Celine Dion, you know like the singer.”

I smiled and thanked him because I assumed that he was just trying to help me make sure I understood babies new first name. I entered babies last name and then asked if they used or planned on a middle name for baby. Mom and dad both looked at me with an odd expression and said simultaneously, “Dion, D-I-O-N. Celine Dion.”

“Oh… Oh I see, I thought you were just trying to help me understand her first name, but she is actually named Celine Dion?”

“Yes, yes, just like the singer!”

I swear that I kept a straight face, because that’s what professionals do, and we just moved forward with the hearing screen. About 15 minutes later, while I was charting in my office, Becky the nurse rolled Celine Dion into the nursery for a test. As she passed me, and with a sly smile, she asked if I had learned babies name. Still being the consummate professional hearing screener that I am, I said that yes I had, and Celine Dion had done well on her test.

“Did they tell you the older girls name?” Becky asked, although this time her smile went from ear to ear.

“No, she was cranky so dad took her out during the screen,” I said.

As Becky rolled the baby into the other room I learned that I had also had the privilege of meeting Angelina Jolie that morning.

***********

This next story, given the fact that I’ve talked in the blog before about our large number of opiod addicted mothers/families, is really nothing but sad, at least initially.

We had a baby in the NICU for many days. Mom and her partner (who believed himself to be the babies father, but who actually wasn’t) were both heavy abusers of opiods. They were told many times that they would not be taking the baby home. They did visit though, almost always high, and also in complete denial that the child was going into foster care. After numerous rounds of antibiotics and morphine for withdrawal, the day came that we could finally screen this little boy.

Most babies who spend a long time in the NICU, and are named, get cute little signs to hang near their isolette. We never have much information, so it’s heartwarming when we can at least record the babies name. In the case of a baby who is being surrendered to CPS we are only allowed to use “Baby Boy” or “Baby Girl” with the birth mothers last name. The birth family does not name the baby.

I was working on the day this little guy was eligible to be screened. When I started, I was unsure of his discharge status. Some parents, who are in treatment, are allowed to take part in some aspects of babies life. Because I had seen the parents in and out of the NICU I thought that perhaps they were being allowed to be involved somewhat. In that case, I asked nurse Alex if baby had a first name for my database.

Alex turned in her chair, and deadly serious with a glance toward a small construction baby sign near the bassinet, said to me, “Bunny Rabbit.”

I don’t think that I have the ability to convey my reaction adequately in this blog post. I know that I just stared at her as she repeated, with another nod toward the sign, “Bunny Rabbit.”

My head began to shake back and forth and I think I actually uttered, “NO WAY!”

“I’ll be using our standard Baby Boy in this case,” I said while I looked down at a precious boy with an IV coming from his head. Alex and Peggy began replaying some of the events that had led up to the naming of this boy by his heavily addicted and clearly incompetent mother. Legally, thankfully, she lost the right to name this child.

**********

Some names make me smile. Some, in their uniqueness, make me laugh once I leave the patients room. Some make me cringe. Some names given to these little humans leave me wondering who they will grow up to be and how the choice of name will influence them, if at all.

What will Celine Dion and Angelina Jolie think about themselves, and their parents, as they grow up? When will the awareness of their famous names become apparent? How will others behave or treat them?

Who will the tiny boy, who has endured so much already in his early life, become? Will he ever know the woman who wanted to name him Bunny Rabbit because she thought it was cute and completely appropriate? I have to say that I hope not.

What is in a name, as Juliet asks? A mere label, or something much, much more…

 

As Flat As A…

Today was mammogram day. It’s been a few years. I know for many women this procedure isn’t pleasant. I’ve always assumed that unpleasantness might have something to do with size of, or type of breast tissue being squeezed into a pancake shape. Other than the increasing pendulous nature of my 5 decades old breasts, I’ve never really found a mammogram to be unpleasant or painful.

It’s never really been difficult to make small talk either, while I stand nonchalantly waiting between images with my chest exposed, my blue cape casually swept back over my shoulders in something akin to a strong superhero about to lift off into the sky, while the breeze begins to pick up the edges of the material and lift me up and away.

Of course the eyes of the technician never go to my chest. They never dip below my chin, unless she is in the midst of lifting and settling and adjusting one breast after the other. This is the unwritten mammogram rule and my technician was extremely professional. Also, the tech today added a new word to my mammogram vocabulary: Smoothing. Smoothing involves making sure all of the flappy chicken skin on my arm is not going to interfere with the image of the breast while the more vertical image is taken. Ladies you know this one—your arm is allowed to drape casually over the machine in a friendly, but not too intimate hug while your breast is lifted up and over towards your sternum before being squished unnaturally while the nipple elongates toward the back of the machine.

I had to reason that since this was my first time with smoothing, my flappy arm tissue has only recently become a mammogram nuisance. I’m holding this as a positive. It encourages me that I have reached almost 60 and only now encountered this new feature.

As I was instructed to “hold very still” I let my mind wander back to my first few mammograms. I vaguely remember being self conscious enough back then to actually believe I needed to try to hold my stomach in so the muffin top would be less obvious over my jeans. Now the muffin top, and stomach, make a comfortable rest area for my breasts to sit upon as the technician and I chat. I was actually enjoying the freedom of being allowed to take my bra off for even a brief few minutes in the middle of the day. I consider that luxury.

Also, for the very first time ever, I was offered a deodarant pad when the images were finished. We all know that wearing lotions and deodarants during a mammogram are a big no-no, but never have I had an imaging center actually offer deodarant as they send you back to your cubicle to take off your superhero cape and strap your bra back on.

I left the clinic with a smile on my face, ready to tackle the rest of my day off, smelling like nothing more than the fabric softener on my clothing rather than armpit sweat. Did this post have a point? No, not really but as my days are generally pretty boring, mammogram day was a high point so I thought that I would share.

I will leave you with this: Don’t fear your mammograms ladies. Embrace them for the potential they offer you to accept your body in what ever form it takes. Chat up the technicians while you stand exposed because you just might brighten their day as well as your own. Lastly, wear your capes proudly, all the while knowing that you have a choice to face the world without post-mammogram underarm odor thanks to some convenient little packets of freshness.

 

 

Stick A Fork In Me…

Do some of you set down to tackle a post but then find yourself contemplating rather to actually post it? Perhaps you tuck it away in the drafts folder and sit on the idea for a few days, or months. Perhaps the post is controversial, or deeply personal, or maybe you just wonder if anyone will really be interested in reading about Great Uncle Fred’s prostate surgery.

This readers, is one of those posts. I have been stewing over this for some time. I need to write about the issue, the aftermath, and then let it go. I apologize in advance and caution you that if you don’t want to read another of my “post divorce” stories, stop now and move ahead with your day.

Not so long ago, in this post actually, I mentioned an issue that had been centered on the ex-spouse, because… aren’t all my real issues somehow related to him. The gory details include the fact that he was told that he was being laid off from his job of many years, likely right around Christmas. I was informed of this by him in a panicked phone call whereby he felt obliged to let me know that once the layoff occurred he was very uncertain about how he would provide our agreed upon alimony.

“Uh, how about getting another job…,” although I didn’t really say that to him.

I had to hear about how he was going to have to change his lifestyle, cut some things out -like his nearly $200 per month cable bill- and how he might just decide to retire. That idea apparently sent his CPA into near cardiac arrest and then into uncontrollable laughter and then into dismay when he realized that the ex truly didn’t understand why retirement at 60 wasn’t really an option.

I chose to keep my opinions to myself at that point, because really why bother. I did start planning however, and taking stock of my own finances. I was even able to find a bit of humor in the fact that the ex somehow assumed that I would just take his need to stop paying his court ordered alimony as a given. He truly seemed to believe that his only responsibility was to ask me to stop depending on the agreed upon amount we had set up every month. That readers is a hallmark characteristic of this man. Toss responsibility onto everyone else.

I’m sure he was caught wildly off guard when he learned that the only way to change a signed court order was to go back to court with a lawyer and attempt to get a judge to change or withdraw what was established in the divorce decree. As he chose to totally allow me to handle the entire divorce, (we filed an uncontested petition) and never had any intention of even showing up for the final hearing, I had little worry that a) he would even consider hiring a lawyer, because that meant paying someone, b) he would have no idea how to attempt any sort of changes himself, and c) he would find some means to continue the ordered payments while bemoaning his plight and the unfairness of it for the next 3 1/2 years.

His layoff notice was received in mid October. I saw him on Christmas day while the granddaughters opened gifts. I barely spoke to him and chose not to ask about the layoff, but assumed it was imminent or had already happened. He never brought the issue up to me.

In early January, in a conversation with my oldest daughter, I felt that it was important to mention that, given the fact that her dad was now not working, and had left me with the clear indication that somehow he needed our financial situation to change, she and I needed to have some discussions about my future as the granddaughters caregiver. Her reply to me, “I’m confused… did you not know that they rescinded his layoff?”

Clearly the answer to that question was no, I had no idea, even though he had apparently learned that his employment would continue somewhere back in November. Let me just stress here- I saw the man at Christmas. He said nothing to me. Nothing. No mention at all that the once looming unemployment was no longer an issue.

So I have sat with this news for the past two weeks. I have, just as I have done for so many years, even attempted to convince myself that perhaps he had just forgotten to mention that financially our world will not be turned upside down. In his initial rush to tell me just how his layoff would impact me by straining his ability to live comfortably he must have simply been so relieved to find he could keep his cable service that telling me just slipped his mind.

Old habits die hard readers, isn’t that what they say. Silly me to continue to find myself giving him the benefit of the doubt. Naive me to hold onto even a smidgen of hope that he would realize that I had no idea of everything that had transpired, that he might even manage a small apology for not telling me sooner. Stupid me to believe that perhaps he has come to understand that he must be responsible for his actions, or inaction.

I decided that in some way I had to end this, because I knew he wouldn’t. I sent this email to him last night, and yes…it is a bold lie…but I had to see how he would respond.

“Been wondering about your ongoing plans surrounding the layoff, as I assume that it has become official by now. I know you mentioned that you would likely be looking to use severance pay and unemployment for some time but would appreciate knowing how/when you anticipate changes and what you might be planning those to be–such as changes to the alimony order. 

I have been diligent about watching the amount of my spending since learning of the layoff, but quite frankly I depend upon the alimony amount each month, even with a part-time job. My hours from that are minimal. I need as much notice as possible (as will C and my ability to be with the girls)  if income considerations are to change with the process of a new court order assigning any changed amounts each month. Obviously this is something we need to discuss in person, but as I haven’t heard any updates I needed to touch base at least.”

This was the reply I got a short time ago:

“My layoff was rescinded.  I should be good.”

HE should be good. Isn’t that great to know. The best news ever. HE is gonna be fine. HE hasn’t had any worries since Thanksgiving when they stopped the layoff process. HE has known for 2 months that there were no more issues or concerns.

“I should be good.”

Four little words that have allowed me to finally let go of the silly, naive, stupid me who held onto that teeny, tiny smidgen of hope that a 60 year old man had any potential to learn even a minute amount of responsibility.

I. Am. Done.

The answer is clearly a resounding no.

Apartment Life

I haven’t lived in an apartment since roughly 1979. Back then I was young; a new dental assistant, relatively poor, and just happy that I didn’t have to live at home anymore. My paycheck covered the necessities and that’s about all.

In fact, funny story before I go on: My boss took the office (all 2 staff members plus himself) to San Francisco for a short weekend seminar. He paid for airline fees and hotel thankfully. I literally had $50 cash in my purse for the weekend. That was all my bank account could muster. The first night we had dinner in a fancier restaurant. I was panicked that I was going to have to pay for my dinner and that my wallet would be empty. I was trying to figure out how I could sneak seminar food back to my room to have something to eat until we left on Sunday. He (again thankfully) paid for that dinner, but I was still uncomfortable for the entire weekend wondering what else might come up that I would either have to find an excuse not to attend or how I could tactfully choose nothing more than an appetizer as my meal.

My situation is not quite that dire anymore. Now that the financial situation with my ex-husband has been controlled for the time being I can live in relative comfort with my income. That definitely has something to do with the fact that I purposefully chose to rent an older, semi-renovated but clearly older, apartment.

I have fixed this new home up quite nicely and everything, while being modestly priced and/or bargains and/or mine already, suits me and this place well. I have no real need for anything. However, and I am cautiously blaming this on the fact that I have been a home owner since 1983, I see projects surrounding me and it’s driving me crazy that I don’t own this place and cannot do anything legally to change my surroundings.

I don’t want to knock out walls or add an upstairs. Nothing like that. I am a fixer, and a doer and (yes, I am whining) when I see something that needs to be done I am used to doing it, within reason. Of course, the landlords will actually repair things that come up, like my kitchen sink that only allowed for a trickle of hot water. I got a brand new faucet when I reasonably asked what the problem might be and mentioned the things I had already tried to fix the issue.

I’m talking about those little projects, that when you own a home, you notice and say to yourself, “It’s time to update XYZ,” and then if the price to update XYZ is reasonable, you do it.

My current XYZ project, if I owed this home, would be to replace all the knobs and drawer pulls in my kitchen. They are original, I think, and without a doubt have seen better days. They’re some sort of coppery, brass-bronze devices that look a lot like a satellite dish. Most are chipped and water marked. No, I have not tried (yet) many of the do-it-yourself ways to clean copper, but that’s mostly because I’m not really sure what these things are made of and don’t want to make them worse. I also don’t really like these knobs either. This is where my homeowner wisdom kicks in and the local Lowe’s or Home Depot or even Amazon begins to whisper to me…”Just get some nice new knobs. The kitchen will look so much better, fresher. Go ahead…”

I have landlords that would likely give me the okay if I really did want to go ahead and change these things out. They would simply tell me to send the receipt along with my rent and deduct the cost of the knobs. They did that graciously and with (I suspect) much relief when I asked them about installing my own window screens last summer after moving in.

The real question though seems to be, “Where will all this lead?” I don’t own this home. I borrow it in a manner of speaking. Will I live here forever? If so, then it might be worth giving in to the voices. Is it wrong to want to put a little of myself and my own preferences into this home, especially when these wants are relatively minor? If I’m here even 3, 4 or 5 years it seems like the enjoyment of changing a few things still outweighs the legality of being a renter.

Obviously asking permission, instead of just doing, is something I am struggling with. I am also struggling to remember that this space is really not mine. I have to find a way to overcome the owner mentality of the past 30+ years.

Should I just be grateful that I have a home and stop fixating on changing things. It’s okay to tell me that I sound a bit spoiled, or to tell me to stop sulking and whining.

What would you do?

Let’s Catch Up…

Just thought that I’d catch you up on the goings on in my world in case anyone is interested…

Here in my little 4-unit building we have some new neighbors. It’s only taken the landlords four months to gut and renovate the unit once lived in by controlling (and probably abusive) curmudgeon Sam. I have not met them yet, but I understand they are siblings, 3 of them, although I have only seen 2. I suspect they work a lot as they are young and it seems relatively quiet there so far. Even when they were moving in this past weekend they did so rather unobtrusively so I don’t suspect wild parties will be very common. In an ironic twist, one of them drives an old Jeep Wrangler that reminds me in noise level and looks of my Alison’s old car. Her’s was white, verging on dinged up, dingy gray and this one is black but it has the familiar engine sound, some odd wires or connectors hanging from underneath it and even duct tape helping to hold up one of the rear windows. Seems that aging Jeeps must fall apart in a universal manner.

***** ***** *****

I spent a good two weeks with some sort of toxic germs living in my nose and bronchial passages. I really thought that I was going to escape relatively unscathed this season as I had managed to avoid most of the germs my two little angels seemed to be spreading non-stop since September. Somehow though, even obsessive hand washing and bathing in hand sanitizer didn’t help this time. Working was interesting. I screened quite often in semi-dark rooms so that the parents (hopefully) didn’t notice all the snot dripping into my pretty yellow (but not very absorbent) masks. I also feared leaving unsightly snot trails under my nose when the masks came off.

In other work news, I had an interesting weekend there a few days ago. We had a baby born with a number of congenital anomalies, one of which might have involved hearing issues so I was asked to screen the baby right away in the NICU. She passed easily so at least that’s one less issue to deal with although she may still have a rough road ahead.

I had screened my first baby of the day just prior to that NICU baby. Thirty minutes later, standing in the NICU talking with Alex we heard “Code Blue, 3rd Floor, Mother/Baby Unit, Room 340.”  Room 340 was the baby I had just left. Code Blue means respiratory issues… as in not breathing. By the time the nurses wheeled her in and the code team arrived she was pink and crying. Apparently she gagged on a substantial amount of fluid and then began to turn blue.

A few other, non-baby issues came and went and I set out to screen my last baby for the day. I really didn’t need to do that one, but I suspected Sunday was going to be busy so I thought I would try to get one more finished. Mom was exhausted and sleeping, dad was also exhausted but very much needing to be the overly helpful dad that I sometimes run into. I have found an interesting cultural phenomenon with dads from Ukraine and surrounding Eastern European countries. They want to be very hands on when I come to screen, as in having the full intent to actually place my sensors and ear hugs for me. This dad was no exception, but I’ve found that if I give them a very specific task, as in helping to keep baby calm, I can get them to let me do my job.

Anyway, this babies coloring was wide ranging. She would fuss and be nicely pink, then gradually her color would turn. I watched this occur a few times and was just on the verge of stopping my test when she passed. It was pretty clear to me, although dad was unaware, that she wasn’t getting oxygen at an adequate level. I quickly gave dad his paperwork, turned to look at baby who had just been fussy and pink, and saw that she was dusky. This is dusky:

dusky-blue_square

Needless to say I made a beeline for the nurses who moved quickly to check on her. The next thing I knew she was being wheeled into the NICU. Her oxygen level: 88. I found out on Sunday that she had been transferred to a higher level NICU. She was unable to stay adequately oxygenated even with a CPAP unit. Scary moments for sure and no one wanted to think what the outcome might have been.

***** ***** *****

Finally, in totally unrelated news, I have come to the sad realization that (and I don’t really know who said this, or even where I might have heard it) but when you divorce and expect to be relatively free from issues with your ex-spouse it never really works out that way. They are always a presence. They will always (inadvertently or perhaps not) find ways to irritate, anger, annoy and just generally plague your existence.

This could be a long story and this post is already long enough so very short version: There was an issue that arose way back in late September, but that I chose not to write about at the time. It could have been rather devastating and I have been planning and adjusting for the past few months. Of course it involves a financial component. Long story short, after more extended angst and worry, after new sleepless nights, in a rather accidental and unintentional way, I just found out (NOT FROM THE EX-SPOUSE WHO SHOULD HAVE BEEN THE ONE TO TELL ME) that all is just fine, peachy-keen, no problem, no worries, over and done. Apparently the knowledge that the looming crisis was no longer a crisis came to the ex around Thanksgiving. That means that I have had the pleasure of added stress for over 3 months now and was not even afforded the courtesy to be told that the world was good, that I could still plan for uninterrupted income, and that I didn’t have to spend inordinate amounts of time doing silly things like trying to figure out how to stay warm while not using any heat in my apartment.

I will close this post by saying that I added that image of the dusky blue color not only to illustrate that sweet baby girls issues on Saturday, but also to highlight, after learning all the information above, what I pictured the color of my ex-spouses face to be as I throttled the life out of him.