I am a Survivor!

It's Friday!!!!
Mahala, Anna and Kaden are at the pool. Skylar is playing a video game and I am hear stuffing my face with chocolates. Who can complain, right? Not me said the fat fly!!

Yesterday Mahala LOVED her gymnastics class!!! Today we are going to check out another gym and then we will compare notes and decide which one she enjoys most. Yipeee!

I was thinking about the tiny wooden house that was far back off of the road. Where one very cold night I was there all huddled with Skylar. I remember trying to see into the future knowing that this too shall pass. Just like the death of my parents, being sexually abused, physical abuse and foster care. They were all just moments in time that pass, only to give you new moments. So life for me is hoping and praying that the new moments are better, safer.
That night I wrote down the things I wanted, my dreams. I wrote down what I thought I needed to do in order to get to where I wanted to go. The cold air burned through my nostrils as I inhaled and exhaled so slowly to the rhythm of my heart beat beating in my ear. It was so quiet and even today the sound of quietness scares me.
I knew I needed to get an education. At that time to make money I would go house to house and ask people if I could wash clothes or clean their kitchen. I would explain to them that I needed money for Skylar and I. I never told them I was homeless and I always dressed clean. I never wanted them to know how bad it really was. The fear of them calling HRS and having Skylar taken from me overwhelmed me daily. I strapped Skylar in an umbrella stroller some sweet lady gave me at a yard sale. I would clean and clean and pray. We would go from house to house and I would clean and clean and pray. I worried I would run out of houses. I never went too far, because I felt safe in that area. I knew what was out there, we were just about 10-15 minutes away from the city if you walked. I feared one of us would get killed in the city or I would get rapped or mugged. You don't see a lot of homeless babies. What could happen to Skylar? We do end up in the city, but that story will have to wait for another day.
I would be honest with the people at the 7-11 and they were good to us. I can't remember now, but on a certain day of the week they would throw away all the leftover sandwiches and premade foods. I was always there, never late. Skylar ans I would have a feast that night!! I always bought fresh milk for him, I was soooooooooo thankful when he was off formula. I would get samples of that at the health department. But, they made me nervous. I was always worried they would ask too many questions. I could not loose my boy!!!
There was a park kind of close. We would sneak out from behind "our" house and walk a few blocks to the park. There was a church close to it and there outside light gave off this yellow glow. It was just enough light for us to see. My favorite thing was the swings. I would swing really high by myself and then I would take Skylar on and he would laugh so loud. Music to my ears, his laugh was. Then we would get on the merry-go-round ans the sand box. It felt like Disney World. Our Disney World! Some nights were cut short, because legally the park is closed when the sun goes down and as soon as we would see a police car we would hit the road. I didn't need any attention.
My life was all about surviving. I decided one day for shits and grins to step out of my comfort zone. WAY OUT! I took a public bus and asked the nice man if he would take me to the community college. He said that he would love to.


Soccer or Gymnastics

My sweet baby girl Mahala has never had a real interest in sports or really any extracurricular activity at all. But since Anna has been here with us they have played soccer. And Anna who is from Sweden and takes soccer very seriously thinks she is great at it and thinks I should put her on a team. So, the other day- of course after sign ups - Mahala announces that she wants to sign up for soccer. Ok, yeah....I guess.How the hell do I do that. I have always been intimidated by soccer because of the title "Soccer Mom". And because soccer is crazy here where I live and some of my friends that have kids who play are like soccer freaks. They are practicing all the time. Doing indoor, outdoor, select this, select that.

So, I explained to Mahala that since sign ups are officially closed she may not be able to get on a team. Sure enough all teams were full and the list for fill ins was a mile long. The lady explained what to do for next summer and explained how indoor/outdoor works. She would need to register in January for summer outdoor, really!?
But, when she found out we were homeschoolers she told us about this program for homeschoolers. They meet on Fridays (not yet but soon) for chess and soccer. Great! Mahala didn't seem too disappointed and even asked questions. I was happy that she wasn't too down. I mean she is only 8 years old.
Before we left to try and sign up for soccer we had talked about gymnastics. We've talked before, several times. But, I never could get a real commitment. But, yesterday she gave me a commitment. So, I took her and signed her up at not 1, but 2 different gymnastic places. She will get a free lesson at each of them. One on Thursday and one on Friday. She was grinning from ear to ear, I was worried her teeth might fall out. I promise to update!



My kids know about the homeless thing. I have talked to Skylar a lot about it. I figure those first 5 years of life are critical and play into who you are. I tell my kids because I want them to know how good life is. How important family is and how well off they are now. Be thankful you hear me! I think for my kids they understand who I am and where I've been. I hold my kids, my husband so close to me and so high on my list because I know....BAAAM! It can ALL be taken away in an Instant. Do you know what an instant looks like? Imagine being in a pink straight jacket looking outside from a window. There is your family playing together in slow motion. Playing ball and picking daisies sing together in between laughs. The sun has never been so bright and warm you can feel to on your face through the window.
You scream and fight but that straight jacket just gets tighter and tighter the more you fight. You toss yourself on the cold floor trying to get out and save your family. The pain from your struggle burns as the pain in your breaking heart aches an ache you've never felt or imagined before. You get up and look out the window, you know for a fact that this had to have been just a dream, a nightmare! But it's raining and dark when you look out that window. All the flowers you once saw are gone. Your family is gone, you hear no more singing, there are no more games being played. It's so very quiet, there are no more laughs. And you just stand there at the window shivering all alone. You look down and notice that the pink straight jacket is gone....it's replaced with shackles.



This was an email from a friend that knows I'm a Germ Freak!!! I normally hate forwards, but I thought this was too funny.

When you have to visit a public bathroom, you usually find a line of women, so you smile politely and take your place. Once it's your turn, you check for feet under the stall doors. Every stall is occupied. Finally, a door opens and you dash in, nearly knocking down the woman leaving the stall. You get in to find the door won't latch. It doesn't matter, the wait has been so long you are about to wet your pants! The dispenser for the modern "seat covers" (invented by someone's Mom, no doubt) is handy, but empty. You would hang your purse on the door hook, if there were one, but there isn't - so you carefully but quickly drape it around your neck, (Mom would turn over in her grave if you put it on the FLOOR!), yank down your pants, and assume "The Stance." In this position your aging, toneless thigh muscles begin to shake. You'd love to sit down, but you certainly hadn't taken time to wipe the seat or lay toilet paper on it, so you hold "The Stance." To take your mind off your trembling thighs, you reach for what you discover to be the empty toilet paper dispenser. In your mind, you can hear your mother's voice saying, "Honey, if you had tried to clean the seat, you would have KNOWN there was no toilet paper!" Your thighs shake more. You remember the tiny tissue that you blew your nose on yesterday - the one that's still in your purse. That would have to do. You crumple it in the puffiest way possible. It is still smaller than your thumbnail. Someone pushes open your stall door because the latch doesn't work. The door hits your purse, which is hanging around your neck in front of your chest, and you and your purse topple backward against the tank of the toilet. "Occupied!" you scream, as you reach for the door, dropping your precious, tiny, crumpled tissue in a puddle on the floor, lose your footing altogether, and slide down directly onto the TOILET SEAT. It is wet of course. You bolt up, knowing all too well that it's too late. Your bare bottom has made contact with every imaginable germ and life form on the uncovered seat because YOU never laid down toilet paper - not that there was any, even if you had taken time to try. You know that your mother would be utterly appalled if she knew, because, you're certain, her bare bottom never touched a public toilet seat because, frankly, dear, "You just don't KNOW what kind of diseases you could get." ! By this time, the automatic sensor on the back of the toilet is so confused that it flushes, propelling a stream of water like a firehose against the inside of the bowl that sprays a fine mist of water that covers your butt and runs down your legs and into your shoes. The flush somehow sucks everything down with such force that you grab onto the empty toilet paper dispenser for fear of being dragged in too. At that point, you give up. You're soaked by the spewing water and the wet toilet seat. You're exhausted. You try to wipe with a gum wrapper you found in your pocket and then slink out inconspicuously to the sinks. You can't figure out how to operate the faucets with the automatic sensors, so you wipe your hands with spit and a dry paper towel and walk past the line of women, still waiting. You are no longer able to smile politely to them. A kind soul at the very end of the line points out a piece of toilet paper trailing from your shoe. ( Where was that when you NEEDED it??) You yank the paper from your shoe, plunk it the woman's hand and tell her warmly, "Here, you just might need this." As you exit, you spot your hubby, who has long since entered, used and left the men's restroom. Annoyed, he asks, "What took you so long, and why is your purse hanging around your neck?" . .This is dedicated to women everywhere who deal with a public restroom (rest??? you've got to be kidding!!). It finally explains to the men what really does take us so long. It also answers their other commonly asked question about why women go to the restroom in pairs. It's so the other gal can hold the door, hang onto your purse and hand you Kleenex under the door!!


Help, Need food Quick

It's a Beautiful Sunday here! Yipeeee! We had a great breakfast brought to you by MOMMY!!!! And then we had a small family melt down followed by a fast frenzy to church.
Amen, Amen what a wonderful service even though Kaden pretended to be the HULK and caused the church daycare workers to literally break out into a sweat. He was not a very happy camper. Apparently I forgot to send him a memo that the family melt down was over!
After church I suckered Thanh into taking us out to lunch. Yeah me! And then we went to our local "everything is Larger than Life, but at a discount" store. And spent a boat load of money on much needed essentials.
We came home, played with the kids and kind of hung out. Then we thought we would look at old year book pictures. Yeah, everything is fun until someone gets hurt. Obviously my hair was a tad high back then.


Sweaty Crotch Part 2

He got up and left and he never touched me again, that battle was over. Mom came in the room and asked where he was. Now I know better then to upset Mom, the doctors and everyone always told me how we couldn’t upset her and cause her unnecessary stress. But, I felt this was necessary. I started rambling on and on about all the picnics and bbqs, when he would corner me into an empty Sunday school room at church. How he would touch and taste my body and sometimes I was not alone. There were other kids that were involved too. It all poured out of me like I had just pulled the cork from the ocean’s floor. And she held me and screamed apologies. And we rocked back and forth and cried together. Mom told me how he used to chase her around the table trying to catch her to abuse her too. She kept saying how stupid she was because she did not protect me when she knew what he was capable of. She told me about the scary nights she had as a little girl. Having to live under the same roof with him.

Mom decided to call one of her sisters and she rushed on over. Mom told her everything I had said. I felt like I was on trial for doing something wrong. She started in on how he was a good church man and he’s just an old man. All men get like that when they get older. She kept looking at me with her face all twisted like I was the one holding down little children. Hey lady I was the child in this picture here!! I couldn’t believe my ears, she called him and asked about the whole thing, and Sheila said this Daddy. Yes, ahh, ok. Yes Daddy. Blah, blah, blah. I felt like I was being boxed into a corner. I was having irrational thoughts at this point. I remember fearing that what if she told him to come over and said here you go Daddy, take her. We know you are a good, Christian man. Now Sheila shut up and take it, like we all had to. That’s exactly how I felt this was all going to go down.

So, I did what I learned to do best. I ran; I ran as fast as I could out the front door. I remember hearing Momma screaming to my aunt how she was going to lose her baby. Go after her she screamed, please. I was gone and it felt good to feel the wind rush in and out of my lungs. The pain in my side and chest helped me to know that yes, I was still alive. I slowed down and turned into a neighborhood. I had never been there before and it felt nice to be somewhere new. Nobody knew me; I was the outsider looking into their windows. I saw kids playing, mom’s bringing in groceries, fathers mowing lawns. Yeah, I’ll take this one I thought. I want this kind of life. Not the screwed up one down the road.

I walked until after dark and then I started to worry about Momma. There was no need for her to be upset and worry about me. God forbid what if something has happened to her and I’m not there to take charge. So I walked and then I ran so I could get there sooner. And when I reached our yard I stood there. There she was sitting on her bed with her legs dangling over the side. She had her red shawl like blanket over her shoulders. She was scared and worried, I could just tell. And for a minute I felt like the luckiest girl in the world. To have had such a beautiful family at one time. There was so much love in our home. And now looking at her it was my responsibility to care for her and love her like she’s always done for me. I was going to keep our love alive and I knew our love would keep her alive.
I walked in the door and she had tears pouring from her eyes. The relief of me finally walking through that door was all over her face. I dropped down on my knees in front of her and cried she rubbed my head and told me he would never touch me again. She said that Daddy is probably rolling in his grave and that he would have killed him if he would have known. We finally went to bed after a long talk and I felt safe that night. Safe from my grandpa and safe from death.