I started going thru the boxes I brought home from California. My Father's office has been packed up for 20 years, untouched.
Diplomas, family photos, patent plaques, work papers, etc... Some I remembered hanging the walls of his office, some seem completely unknown to me.
I wasn't expecting to find every letter I'd written him from college. Or his 3 draft cards, his Goldwater in '64 tie pin, or a random Father's Day card I made for him in 1975. All brought tears to my eyes, as I tried to organise 30 years of an impressive career that was cut short at the age of 51.
His desk was the centre of his office and will be the centre of mine. He spent many hours sitting at that desk working on things I can't even wrap my head around.
He graduated with an electrical engineering degree, and a bit later his MBA in the mid '60s and I studied English literature and sociology. As much as our dry humour was a like, our brains worked worlds apart. His work was technical, mine worked on grabbing the reader's interest. I'm left handed for christ's sake, that should say everything.
For all his technical merit, he still understood my need to take a pottery classes in college. He enjoyed the arts. As well he should, he introduced it to me. Art shows in The City, gallery openings, museums around the world, he certainly wasn't a one sided man. He felt every well rounded person should learn a musical instrument and appreciate art. I began piano lessons in the 1st grade. I have no doubt my decision was because he played the piano. I loved to watch him play.
He never discouraged learning. I thought I wanted to be a National Geographic photographer when I was 12. I call my year from 12 to 13 my black and white phase.
Looking at my black and white photos gives me a new appreciation for his faith in me. He always told me I could accomplish anything with hard work and commitment.
I thought every parent said those things...but sadly I now realise that's just not true.
I wrote a post last month about my daughter's sexual orientation. And yet, really the post was more about how proud I was that she was/is so comfortable in her own skin at such a young age to talk about it with me. Me, her mom of all people.
I never would have discussed that with my mother....cold chills are running down my spine just thinking of that that. Ick.
Yet, I knew I wanted to be the kind of mother/parent that my kids could come to....and I am. Nothing is too taboo to talk about in our family.
I'm proud of that.
So when I got/get some flack from a commentor(s), I'm never really surprised but I'm sometimes a bit confused.
He(a commentor) wrote what a bad influence I am for my deviant daughter(eye roll). Now here's where my confusion comes in....my blog this last year or so has pretty graphically described my sex life with my Husband and our other sexual kinks. This religious nut didn't seem to mind those posts. But write about how I'm proud of my bisexual daughter and now I'm a heathen for christs sake. Talk about a hypocrite.
As per required of every religious zealot, he took it further saying there is nothing stopping people(like her) from having sex with kids and/or animals, etc.... This mainstay of their argument is always brought up as a red herring, to ignore the real truth. They are bigots...and use their religion to hide behind their bigotry.
All this is done to hide the fact that they are openly discriminating against a group of people based on their sexual orientation....and nothing else. Perhaps out of fear? I don't know.
I'd have a little more respect for these people if they were just honest in their discrimination.
Any religion that decries against it...should be brought under severe scrutiny. As I've told my daughter, any religion that tells you that loving another person is wrong...you should be suscipious of their motivations. Loving someone is never wrong.
I just got home again, after spending a week in California.
What was to be a few days, picking up my Father's furniture and his belongings, turned into an ugly scene with my mother...and ended with me leaving early and spending the rest of the week recovering with a friend.
Perhaps I was overly optimistic that this visit with my mother would be normal. Even my brother and husband had tried to prepare me for the possibility that it might not go as planned. Visits with my mother rarely do, yet, I stayed true to my belief that this visit would be different. I didn't shore up any walls or defences like I usually do, in order to protect myself. I realise now, this was what my husband was worried about....
Looking back, I realise there were a few red flags that I should have heeded. Some 'off the cuff' comments she'd made before we came down...they made me think for a bit, but ultimately I discarded the notion that she would be make this visit difficult.
I couldn't have been more wrong.
Time really has no meaning to someone who feels they are the "victim". Even though it's been 7 years since we've had our last "disagreement" she was able to readily bring up shit that had pissed her off from 20 years ago. The woman simply cannot let anything go.
I don't even like to call our discussions, "disagreements" or "fights" because when I'm standing there and she's screaming nonsense at me....what do you call that? I refuse to participate in these discussions with her. I absolutely refuse. I walk away. It's the only way I can stay sane.
There is no reason for me to participate in her nonsense anyway. She continues to brings up the past over and over and how she feels everyone has hurt her personally in some way. I have since read and studied that is what people with narrssisstic disorders do...Honestly, if I stayed, it would be difficult for me to keep a straight face and not bust out laughing at half the shit she brings up. I know she's been diagnosed bipolar but I swear she's delusional as well.
Her perception of the past is so skewed.
There simply is no way to make sense out of her skewed logic. Her moral compass is so off it's scary.
She could take up days and days of writing, but I promised myself I wouldn't do that.
After moving out when I was 18, I sought therapy to help me understand why she is the way she is....in order to cope better.
She raised me, yes. Adopted me, yes. Do I feel that she was my mother? Yes. But not in the way most children do. I was more the mother in that relationship. So it will always feel, in my heart, like I didn't really have one...in the true sense.
Which brings me back to why I put up with all this crap. To get my father's things. He was my parent in every way. He protected me. Guided me. Loved me unconditionally. I was very much a "Daddy's girl". It was an easy roll for me to fill and to flourish.
As I went thru some old photos last night, there are so many photos of my Father and I. You can see the look in my eyes when I'm with him, pure adoration.
I realise now why my mother said she resented me all those years ago(and probably still). My Father and I had a very special bond which is was easily seen...even in the photos.
A few years ago, when we were living on a quiet island in the Puget Sound, a new friend I'd met the previous year died.
She was a young mother, with two children not even yet school age.
Her diagnosis came as a shock. The doctors weren't even sure she'd have a few months. She was terminal, there was nothing they could do, she knew her fate.
In those few months, even tho she lived, we mourned her. We also mourned the fate of her young children.
A small group of mothers took turns caring for the children for a few hours each afternoon. Sometimes so she could rest or sleep. Sometimes so her and her husband could spend some alone time together.
It was the least we could do.
The doctors were right, she deteriorated quickly and passed away only a few months after her initial diagnosis.
As I thought about my upcoming trip home this weekend, I thought about my friend....and her children. They were/are so young. The youngest had only turned two, the oldest not yet four.
Would they remember their mother? Would they remember how much she loved them? How much she tried to keep smiling till the very end?
I was 24 when my Father passed away. We too, knew he'd be leaving us soon. Those few months of mourning while he was still alive, cannot be described with words. It's the darkest my life has ever been. And 20 years later, I miss him still with such a hurting in my heart, that it brings me to tears.
I think of her children, and know they've been robbed of so much. Maybe it's best they won't remember. I don't really know.
H and I married six months after He passed. Quietly, just the two of us....in a small chapel in California. If He couldn't walk me down the isle, I didn't want there to be any people....just us. For He loved H too.
I'm going home this weekend. It's not the first or even the 20th time since He's died that I'm going home. But this time, I'm bringing back pieces of him that are so important to me. It's like I'm finally getting closure.
I feel so blessed that He was my Father for 18 years. That He picked me and brought me home all those years ago...and now I'm bringing home a piece of Him.
As if she was telling me she was ordering a blt sandwich, my youngest told me that she is bi-sexual yesterday.
I already knew, but smiled at her and suppressed my urge to do my happy dance right there in the restaurant.
You see...for her to BE and FEEL so comfortable that she could tell me so easily....that is like receiving the gold medal of parenting my friends.
She's only 14 years old but wise beyond her years.
She then expressed sympathy for a friend who is gay and doesn't feel she can come out to her parents. I empathised with her and offered her friend our home as a safe haven if needed. My lovebug had already told her friend our home(and her parents, us) would always be supportive. Aww, she knows us so well.
I know not everyone she meets in her life will be so excepting. However, I can only hope we've done our job as parents to give her that unconditional support so she'll have the strength to put up with the world's bullshit.
My baby is growing up. I look at her and I see so many possibilities for her. So much has changed since I was her age. She has so many positive role models in her life that are gay, straight, bi-sexual, etc.
She doesn't have to ever feel like she's alone. For this I am grateful.
It takes more than just two parents/people to raise your children these days.
To those friends and family that have been there since day one....
I'm a dreamer....literally. I dream every night. Often several times a night.
My sex dreams are few and far between, unfortunately. However, when I have them, they are erotic, dark and leave me breathless when I wake.
I like to try to interpret my dreams on occasion...if the dream seems particularly peculiar. I've given up long ago trying to understand why my subconscious doesn't let me have sex/orgasms in my dreams however.
I feel cheated.
Oh I will start to have sex....and then...bam...monkey girl is wide awake. Every single time since I can remember my first sex dream. Not once have I ever consummated a relationship in my dreams.
My subconscious must really just like to screw with me. Figuratively, of course.
Last night, I was tied up. My dream lover was teasing me relentlessly. He had me hanging by my wrists, while he stood there and played with me.
"Don't come..." he said.
As his fingers played with me and I wiggled in order to gain release, he kept repeating that over and over.
Pressure began to build. He stood there smiling knowing full well how close I was to coming.
"I'll punish you if you come" he said.
I'm sure he felt me clench on his fingers with that threat, for his eyebrow arched in that knowing manner.
I'm so fucked, I thought.
I couldn't concentrate on anything but his fingers. Those fingers that seem to know just where to rub and play with me.
As I felt my orgasm began to tingle...
The groan in my throat wasn't from an orgasm....my alarm went off. Shit.
Until late 2011, my brother was living in Chicago. Every six months or so I'd fly out to visit and stay with him in his small studio just blocks from the heart of Frank Lloyd Wright's historic district.
In spring, we'd walk the blocks and discuss the homes architecture...and in the winter we'd take the train downtown and wander museums and galleries and stop for late dinners.
We're close. Closer than most siblings I suspect. Up until March of 2011 he was engaged to marry. She was a young little thing(13 years younger). She seemed sweet...if not naïve. I'd only see her for a few dinners when I was in town. I didn't stay long(3-4 days) and she seemed to respect that we like to spend time together just the two of us. I never understood what he saw in her. Yes, she was beautiful. However, she wasn't particularly bright. I always felt he needed someone who would challenge intellectually. He's a prolific reader like me, and we'd often discuss our current reading. One night over fondue, she blurted out how much she hated reading. The statement just hung there in mid air. I wasn't sure where to go with her confession, and my brother continued talking as if she hadn't even spoken.
I never dreamt of the typical white picket fence.
After years in state care, and later adopted, I only hoped for an existence free from loneliness, guilt, violence, and mental illness(my mother's).
Those things seem so far away now that I'm free from them.
But then, they encompassed my everyday life and I hated that life.
The day I knew I'd be free was the day my real life would begin.
No one else's.
That was what I dreamed of....being free.
At whatever cost, I craved it, needed it.
Two weeks to the day after I graduated from high school, I moved out, and left early for college.
I never looked back.
My white picket fence was a shabby one room apartment across the street from the university. God, it was ugly, but it was mine. Green carpet, 1970s decor and all, and I loved it.
Every year my white picket fence changed. Each one left its own mark on me and I on it. From sleepy college town to The City....to another country.
Sometimes I feel I might still be waiting for my real life to begin. But then I look around, see the faces of those I love, see the little things I've collected along the way....and realise, this is My Journey.
Even when I was a skinny little girl with a different name waiting for a family to love me. That was My Journey then.
My white picket fence is so different but it's mine.
She didn't want many people knowing she had breast cancer. I understood her reasoning. She was private. She wanted to focus her energy positively. She didn't want those pitying looks people can't help but give when they know you're sick.
She was only ten years older than me. So young. So full of life. Always smiling and with a hug ready for everyone who knew her.
I will miss her.
I wish I'd been able to know her better.
I remember the last time I saw her.
She knew I'd been sick and had been in and out of the hospital for tests. After my morning hug, she laid her hands on my hands and arms. Transferring her energy to me. Slowing running her hands over the areas she knew gave me the most trouble. I'll remember that as our last moment together. Hands touching.
Her eyes were so blue and upturned from a lifetime of smiling.
As we celebrate Passover this week, I'm reminded of how blessed my family is.... Our oldest is on spring break this week. She's testing her limits and spreading her wings....and driving H and I into an early grave.
She neglected to tell us last Thursday that she and her roommate were taking a road trip to California. It wasn't till she sent a photo of themselves obviously in San Francisco that I figured it out and let H know.
Soon her "wild adventure" as she called it vs. me calling it plain ass crazy to not know where you're going or where you'll be sleeping at night, was quite clear.
We've been trying to stay one step ahead of them. Calling friends and family so that they can "couch surf" their way down California instead sleep in the car on the side of the road(which was their plan).
So in SF, I called some close family friends(the girls godfathers). They took the girls out to dinner in the Castro and had them sleep in the guest room for the night.
The next afternoon, she sent a pic from the Monterey Bay Aquarium, which is just miles from our old home. I knew they'd end up on Auntie's(my bff) doorstep in Pebble Beach eventually. Sure enough, a few hours later they did.
This pattern repeated itself over and over till they were in Los Angeles. Couch surfing their way down the coast of California showing up unexpectedly at family and friend's houses along the way. Of course, all of them were "on call" and expecting them. What they didn't know was H and I had been calling our family and friends to make sure someone was around when they were passing thru town. All the while, H was going crazy tracking her(and the roommate) on her cell phone to be sure they were safe.
Our family and friends opened their homes to them, fed them, gave them beds to sleep in, hugged them and sent them on their way. Under the guise that they were surprised to see her and meet her new roommate. And for that we are blessed.
These wonderful people love her as much as we do....and worry about her as much as we do. And somehow understand her need at 19, to assert her independence in her own way.
They all certainly remember me at 19(most of them) and shake their heads and smile and remember all the crazy stuff we did then too.
And somehow we survived it.
We were blessed then and we are blessed now.
I knew I had to ask. You told me so.
Wait till you're close, you said.
As if it were that easy.
As my finger rubbed the hardness of my clit,
As my back began to arch,
And my eyes began to flutter,
Please may I cum, I asked.
No, you said.
Stop, you said.
Fuck, don't make me stop, but I did.
Lick your fingers, you said.
As I raised my hand, you placed it in your mouth.
Every suck on my fingers made me wet.
Every lick made me groan.
Start again, you said.
I placed my hand on my cunt.
You placed your hand on my throat.
My hand began to twitch.
Your hand began to squeeze.
I'm close, I said.
You best stop, you said.
Will you ever let me cum, I asked.
Oh yes, you said.
With one hand holding both of mine,
Your other hand slapped my cunt.
My back arched.
Your fingers reached inside me.
Your mouth sealed my scream as I came in your hand.
A heavy layer of snow blanketed all of Paris. The city was so quiet. After coming back to the hotel early, I opened the window and sat there watching the snow fall.
Up on the 9th floor, I could see so many rooftops. Little white peaks, steaming.
The news said it was the worst snow storm in decades. It must have been, for the city was virtually shut down...and the snow made it deathly quiet as well.
It was decadently peaceful.
In a couple hours I would need to dress for supper with my father. We were meeting friends of his at Maxim's.
As the sun began to set, a little light clicked on in the guard's booth below. I'd noticed him the other day as we'd left for the countryside. Our driver had been briefly chatting him up while we were waiting to leave. They must be friends, I thought.
He must be freezing in that little booth, and bored.
I don't know what made me think of it, or why I did it, but afterwards I'd had such a wonderful time, that my smile lasted thru dinner. The first paper airplane I'd made dived straight for the ground. The next three or four though floated so gracefully. By then, I knew I was determined to get at least one of my airplanes to soar past the guard's booth. My hope that he would see it.
I spent the next two hours using up every scrap of paper I could find in my hotel room. I'm fairly certain I stopped short of using pages from the bible....but I remember being sorely tempted.
By the time my father came to fetch me for supper, there must have been over a hundred paper airplanes littered on various neighbouring rooftops, the nearby hotel grounds and one lonely paper airplane on the roof of the guard's booth.
For a brief moment I was petrified that if my father saw them, I'd be spending the next three hours cleaning up paper airplanes. I quickly guided him out of my hotel room, mumbling something about being starved.
No one ever mentioned my paper airplanes.
The next morning while we waiting for our car to leave for the south of France I noticed out of the corner of my eye, a little paper airplane sticking out of the valet's keybox.
"If you're playing a poker game and you look around the table and can't figure out who the sucker is. It's you."
My father told me something similar to this before leaving for college. I think it was his way of kindly telling me there will always be smarter people out there in the world...deal with it with grace the best you can. My father always admired Paul Newman.
Well here I am, 2013 is going strong already and I've barely recovered from New Years Eve. Am I handling it with grace, probably not...but I'm trying to muddle through the best I can, fool or not.
Next month H and I will hit a milestone. A quarter century ago, on March 7, 1988, we met. There are many things I can't remember about that day but meeting him is not one of them. So many little details about how he spoke, smiled, pushed his hair off his face. I remember them all.
The unbelievable thrill of that first kiss. Sighing as I rested my head on his shoulder. It took enormous restraint not to drag him back to my place and tuck him in my bed for the night.
In those 25 years we've married, had babies, laughed, cried, made new friends, said goodbye to old friends, lost loved ones, grieved, most importantly we've held on to us. What we love about each other and us as a couple.
It's no easy task people. Raising children, jobs, family, friends, etc...all take away from us as a couple. We've always tried to make a point to put aside time just for us, no matter the distractions. Because once the kiddos are off on their own, and everything else falls by the way side, it will just be H and I, no one else. I don't want to forget what it was that brought us together in the first place. I don't want to let Our relationship grow in separate directions.
It's so easy to get caught up in meaningless shit. Job drama, family drama, friend drama, but when our bedroom door closes at the end of the day there is none of that in our bedroom. It's just the two of us. None of the drama belongs in there with us. That has been our number one rule.
Of course we've broken that rule many times, but we always work to get back on track. And yes, it's work. It takes work to make a 25 year relationship strong.
I love him, but more importantly I'm still IN love with him.