My (Final) Resignation

Dear Sir,

I solemnly regret to inform you that I can no longer participate in your charade and hereby resign from my position in same.

I regret that I am not miserable, angry, or otherwise vindictive.

I regret that I could not bring myself to strike you, no matter how much you have deserved it.

I regret that – no matter how tempting other men can be – I was unable to secure a knight in shining armor to ride in on his white horse and rescue me from a fate worse than death, and that I was forced to rescue myself.

I regret that I was not emotionally unstable enough to warrant heavy use of anti-depressants to maintain my sanity in a foggy haze of the bouncy white ball.

I regret that I was unable – no matter how badly he behaved – to neglect or otherwise torture the family dog.

I regret that I could not enjoy living in a poisonous environment where the resident vampire threatened to drain the life out of me.

I regret that I could not enable you to live a life of depression, isolation, and dictatorship.

I regret that I could not choose material possessions like a home and furniture over the well-being of my children.

I regret that I could not say negative things about you, however truthful, so the children wouldn’t have to figure it out on their own.

I regret that I could not be vindictive and mean by keeping the children away from you.

I regret that I could not believe you when you said you just drove her home, and that “nothing happened,” even when you insisted I drop her as a friend because she was “obsessed” with you.

I regret that I couldn’t treat your new girlfriend – one of the four I actually got to meet – like bubble gum stuck to my shoe even though she was so nice to me. 

I regret that I needed an occasional break from the hearth, and help with the children.

And finally, I regret that I actually missed being me.  A human being, a woman, an independent person with independent thoughts, ideas, and emotions that – if you can believe it – were and are different than yours. 

Francis Union

Acronyms for the Newly Divorced

It’s been a long arduous road, friends, and it aint over yet.  For those of you who severed a marriage and never have to look back – or look at – the insignificant other whose nose you wanted to shove a wine cork into on many a sleepless night – and for the rest of us recently released inmates forced to keep the lines open, this one’s for you….  totally inappropriate, humorous, and as frigidly satisfying as a Peppermint Patty … new acronyms for the newly divorced, for use when text communication is the only civil means to the end.
KMA – Kiss My Ass

GFY – Go F*@% Yourself

ESAD – Eat Shit and Die

GTFO – Get the F*@% out (I think this one already exists, but is appropriate)

GGALGOM – Go Get A Life, Get Outa Mine

UCHI – You Can’t Have It

UPOS – You Piece of Shit

STMYBS – Stop Texting Me Your Bullshit

DCMCML – Don’t Call Me, Call My Lawyer

IOYAA – I’m Okay, You’re An Asshole

INYB – I’m Not Your Bitch

NM$ – Need More Money

OADTTYL – On A Date, Talk To You Later

ISSSYU – I Speak Slow So You Understand

YNGIS – Your New Girlfriend Is a Skank

MHM$MK – My House, My $, My Kids

SCNYA – Sheriff Called, Needs Your Address

DPMH! – Divorce Party, My House!

And, if you are fortunate to enjoy the use of a cell phone that allows for smiley icons, then by all means do not forget to add an eye-rolling, dancing, or kissing smiley to all your correspondence for that extra punch. After all, a kiss is worth a thousand words.
By the way, I would like to – as Todd suggested – change my name to “Francis Union,” so that I can from now on sign my correspondence with my initials.  What do you think?
**Disclaimer: This blog post is in no way intended to insult any member (former or otherwise) of my family.  No cell phones, people, or animals – confined to metal cage or not – were harmed in the writing of this post.

What’s In YOUR Mailbox?

What I found in my mailbox today:

  •          Monthly Bank Statement.  Aren’t these just about obsolete?  I mean, don’t we all do our banking online now?  I probably shouldn’t admit this, but I never even look at these anymore.  Oh well, need kindling for the fire.
  •         Kohl’s card for $10 in honor of MYbirthday!  Score!  There’s alwayssomething to buy at Kohl’s, and I’m sure I could find something I need more than life itself.  And of course there’s Owen – who has outgrown yet another two pairs of size 12 jeans… isn’t it cheaper to buy new ones than do laundry every two days? 
  •        Reminder letter from The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia of Ava’s next diabetes appointment.  Good thing they send these out to remind me to follow up on all our referrals.  Would you believe they won’t see her without them?   Shocking.
  •         A birthday card from the Bon Ton (aren’t they so thoughtful?) with two coupons – $20 off and 20% off good through May 31st.  Bonus! I’m so glad they send these – otherwise I might forget to spend my money.  I doneed wedding shoes….
  •         A copy of a letter summarizing my consultation with a periodontist, for treatment totaling a mere $1500.  Robbing a bank might be in order sometime in the near future.
  •         Two separate letters from the school district indicating each of my children’s BMI and vision/hearing screening results.  I am happy to report that both of them are considered at a healthy weight and neither are at risk for Type 2 diabetes.  What a relief!   And what’s more – though I beg to differ – they can both see and hear!!  Neither of them seem to see their dirty dishes on the table or dirty socks in the living room, and Owen can’t hear me when I talk to him, but they can hear the sound of a flea buzzing in their ear and see upside down E’s from 200 feet away.
  •         A  postcard from First Energy – urging me to Act now and still save $149, to lock in the lowest electric generation price before rates change.  Well, since my last two electric bills were each over $300 – a 200% increase over what I paid in my old house – I’d like to ask if the savings could be retroactive.  I wish I was kidding.  However, I had to have my landlord look into the possibility of an electrical issue inside the house (he didn’t find one) and Met Ed miraculously sent a guy, who just happened to be in the neighborhood,  out the same day to check for exterior problems. Guess what?  He didn’t find anything wrong, he said, but he did notice a faulty connection to the house “that shouldn’t affect energy usage.”  Yeah, sure.  Can’t wait to see this month’s bill.
  •         Circulars from Bon Ton, Cosco, and Bed, Bath & Beyond.  With coupons.  100 more ways to spend your money.

And my personal favorite… 

A summons for Jury Duty!  At the end of this month.  Apparently the county thinks I haven’t spent enough time in the courthouse in the last nine months.  So, I sent them a letter.  You see, being a single mom and having a daughter with insulin-dependent diabetes constitutes a certain degree of “hardship.”  Not to mention the fact that if I have to serve, she’ll be spending the afternoon of her class field trip alone in the school nurse’s office.  Although….. I’d prefer to explain to them that the very sight of the courthouse gives me anxiety pangs – since I seem to be in there every other month over custody and support issues – and I may have a nervous breakdown at any moment.   I should’ve given them a multiple choice letter:  a) let me off the hook b) advise my physician to prescribe just enough valium to take me to that relaxation level just above drooling and incoherent c)  come and we’ll serve you all-you-can-eat tamales and margaritas or, how about d) all of the above?

My 87-year-old grandmother advises that going in for the summons and telling them that all Mexicans and black people are guilty no matter what, will get you off the hook for sure.  It worked for her.  That and swearing incontinence.  Well, aside from the fact that for one,  as long as I don’t have any more babies, I don’t have a bladder control issue,  but I am also a terrible liar – I don’t have the advantage of being viewed as some nutty old lady who may or may not have all of her marbles.  And believe me – she HAS all of her marbles.  She’s smart enough to lift a hanging plant from the front of the Giant and carry it out to her car – because she figures if someone stops her she can claim Alzheimer’s.  So what’s in her mailbox?  Free diabetes testing supplies from Wilford Brimley, a letter from a credit reporting agency regarding her past due bills, and an arrest warrant for botanical theft.

Make it a JOYful day!

La Vida Loca

Ok, so I’ve been MIA for a while.  I have a really good excuse.  But before we get to that, I haven’t actually been hiding.  I’m the woman in front of you in the self check-out line, scanning fruits without codes and struggling to fit all my groceries into one bag on that one little square foot of space where you have to “please place the item in the bag”  as the bag bulges and finally topples over, my longer hair now falling over my face like Cousin It.  I’m the chick behind you at the red light, tapping my foot on the gas in the black Mustang, impatiently waiting for green and pretending to still be young in my black leather jacket and Jessica Simpson glamour-glasses.  I’m still lurking on Facebook, but I find I have less and less to say.  I’m following my various friends around in cyber space like some schizophrenic stalker, finding heartbreaking sympathy for many whose daily challenges seem as endless as mine do, feeling simultaneously proud and green with jealousy toward my fellow runners who ran their 5ks, 10ks and even the Disney Princess Marathon (the nerve of some people), and “liking” a good diabetes day or a bottle of Flaming Poo Hot Sauce (yes, this is a real product).

I’m trying to keep myself out of trouble.  I have written, or started to write, a half dozen posts that are brazenly inappropriate at this point so close to the date of the upcoming custody trial.  I really feel  I need to get it off my chest, these little blisters on my incredulous soul that just need to be p-o-p-p-e-d before I explode and go all postal on the lying little hemorrhoid causing my anxieties.  Oh how I can’t wait to share all the “blemishes” (better resembling some serious acne) of my character that were conjured up during the evaluation process.  You wouldn’t believe some of the things I’ve heard I’ve done…. As a matter of fact, even I can’t believe it.  Where have I been that I missed all that??!  I think he is right about one thing – I’m definitely not the woman he thought he married.  However, all these little pots –er, posts – are set to boil on the gas range of my existence… and soon enough they will bubble over and we will need a serious clean-up crew sometime in June. 

am trying to keep these things to myself.  My fiancé, for one, is sick to death of hearing about it.  No matter how much fun it is to run a pig through the mud, we have spent way too many nights talking about “it.”  It’s everything.  It’s nothing.  You name it.  At some point you gotta let go, right?  And I’d love to – except that every time my mind starts meandering toward Joy, I get another email from my own personal legal department.  Followed by the bill.  I look for things to distract me – like my schoolwork, or back episodes of Grey’s or Survivor (don’t tell me that show isn’t real), a bag of kettle-cooked salt and vinegar potato chips, Words with Friends – which I am undeniably and ridiculously BAD at, for someone with a degree in English for cripes sake , work – which is a wonderful distraction filled with scores of interesting people I just can’t get enough of, and wedding planning.   Todd thinks I’m purposely putting off decisions about an event we are careening toward at what now seems a speed faster than online bill pay, what with it scheduled to occur less than one week after the custody trial.  This part was not planned.  We picked our date long before the new trial date was set.  But who knows?  Maybe the hemorrhoid will come up with another snafu to delay a real decision from the powers that be.  So what?  I’m still a rock star…. I mean, I’m still gettin hitched, come high or hellwaters.  All I can say at this point – Bring it.

Anyway………. I am NOT avoiding decisions.  I’m just really, really bad at them sometimes.  I am indecisive.  I am a procrastinator.  I am a Gemini.  I am without a calendar or any sense of time, sometimes.  I woke up one morning and it suddenly occurred to me I have less than 2 months to plan an intimate wedding for 50.  Thank God my mom owns the venue.  So what if I have no dress, no shoes, no cake – at least we’ll all have food and shelter, right?  There is that little matter of an officiant…..

So the kids are doing okay.  People always ask.  I always say the same thing.   I am not at liberty to say anything else, and even if I was – I wouldn’t discuss them.  They’ve been through enough.  They don’t need me telling the world their confessions to me.  So I make them healthy foods they won’t eat, throw them in the shower before they stink, let them play endless video games, and have the nerve to put them in their separate beds at a decent school-recommended hour.  I check on them while they sleep. 

The other night when I looked in on each of them while they slept, I reveled in their angelic features – these beautiful little cherubs I creep up on in the middle of the night are the same offspring who by day are screaming hatred eternal at each other, begging for money to buy just one more pack of Pokemon cards, and occasionally calling me the worst mom ever because I won’t give her – um, I mean, them – what they want.  Nonetheless, they are well-adjusted.  Don’t everyone’s kids roll around on the floor hitting and kicking each other and swear one another off in a very outspoken request for a “different” sibling – or none at all? Don’t all children punch their dad and call him a f-ing idiot?? (Sorry, this is technically hearsay, though I heard it from a very reliable source.)  I haven’t been around other people and their kids too much lately – except for the other day at Costco, where I could hear some poor child screaming for liberty in a shopping cart no closer than the other side of the store and thought to myself, thank goodness I don’t have to deal with that today.  I used to look at those parents – before I was one – with something resembling horror.  Today, I feel nothing but the utmost compassion as I run the opposite way with my eyes averted.

Then I go back to sleep  and dream of my lawyer in some alternate universe where he’s smiling behind his big mahogany desk like a big Jewish Willy Wonka high on Matzojuana handing out bags of chocolate balls, but I have no place to put them because I lost my purse.  (Note to self: lay off the Lindt truffles before bed.)  Todd shows up somewhere in this dream, after I’ve fallen down the proverbial rabbit hole into a subway tunnel where every faceless someone is racing around playing hide the ball with my missing purse.  He tells me he can’t find my purse, but he’ll keep looking and then, thank GOD, my alarm to check Ava goes off.  Perhaps my lost purse is a metaphor for my finances, or maybe even something more profound and …. deep.  Or my lawyer – as a reminder not to take all this so seriously (even though the living, breathing one very much does).  Either way, if I’m Alice in Wonderland, then my lawyer must be the god-dammed March Hare.  And, if I don’t stop writing now, I’ll be late for tea.