Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Mon Dieu!

This is what I was saying last weekend. ALL WEEKEND LONG.

My husband and I have been working on the house for quite a while. I've been in the process of decluttering ten years of our life while he has been redoing our bar, making trims (to save money) and painting like a fool. Everything was fine until this past weekend when it became crunch time. His brother and family flew in from Paris Sunday at 5:30pm. We finished the house thirty minutes before they stepped off the plane.

Those design shows are full and I do mean FULL of shit. They make it all look so easy. One shot is how they want to design the room, next one they are moving furniture out of a room, next someone is holding a paintbrush and you see one little dash of paint on the wall and then voila! They are laying out candles, the furniture has magically appeared in the room, no one is in a sweat, and everything is PERFECT.

What you don't know is that there are twenty people hiding in the back of the house who break out working like Tasmanian devils when the camera is off.

My husband and I were only two Tasmanian devils and even we weren't fast enough. He actually never slept Saturday night and painted from 7:00am Saturday morning until 5:00pm Sunday evening. There were times that I almost started crying because it was just so overwhelming and I felt we would never get done. It was HELL. In Arabic, they say "Mosaba" meaning it's a catastrophe. All weekend long as I passed my mother-in-law in the house we would look at each and say, "Mon dieu...Mosaba!!".

I love that woman, by the way. She is such a dear angel. She flew from Morocco a few months ago and will be here until November. She helped out as well this past weekend and made the most beautiful curtains, pillows and comforter for the guest room. I need to take pics and post them one day.

Wow...I said "guest room". Most of the time I say it's my daughter's room because it is her room. It is the room she left and moved away from. It is really gorgeous now. I think it's easier to look at because it doesn't look like her room anymore. After she left it was hell even looking in the direction of her bedroom. All of her posters were off the walls when she left with holes all over the drywall. None of her things were there anymore and it looked abandoned. The walls were a mess with holes. I didn't realize it because she was always putting up posters here and there and changing them out and I never knew how many holes she actually put in the walls. My husband was spackling like crazy to fill them all in.

We still say it's her room. It will always be her room. It is just different now. Just like our relationship since she left.

I really need to write about what happened up until and when she left. It is just so difficult to do that.

Karen, I am sorry to hear about your daughter. I read your comments to my other posts and I wanted to say something and felt at a loss for words. I completely understand what you are going through. It's just so damn hard. I will write you soon, though. It has just been difficult to do it.

My brother-in-law and his wife and daughter will be here for another two weeks. Things will then start calming down. The only things left to do to the house after they leave is:

  • Paint the facade of my husband's studio which happens to be located at the front of our house. The sun has faded it out so badly it looks like Sanford and Son live here.
  • Turn the guest room (the room beside my daughter's room) into a "cave" for me. My husband is going to build bookshelves, we are going to paint and I am going to get my scrapbooking and jewelry-making things out of boxes they have been stored in for FOREVER and have a place all my own. I simply cannot wait for that!!
  • Redo the paint in our bathroom. We never had a chance to get to it.
  • Paint the shed in the backyard.
There are other things to do of course, but the above list is the top priority.

It's been nice to declutter. You feel lighter in your mind after going through everything. I still have more to do, but a huge amount has been done already.

I went to court for the bankruptcy hearing. Thank goodness that is over. The judge said that I would have to be "re-evaluated" in October 2011 because by then my husband hopefully will have a job and our financial situation will be different which means we will have to pay more money to the court every month. I hate the thought of having to go back to court then. Bankruptcy court is such a miserable place. People there all look depressed. Some people are having to pay over $3,200 a month for five years for their bankruptcy! I don't know how they afford that. I am having to pay $200 a month for five years. Many people there had already filed for bankruptcy multiple times in their life. I never knew that you could do that. I definitely don't ever want to do that again.

I still haven't gotten word about when I am supposed to go to the federal court for the security clearance I need for my job. I have all of my paperwork together though and am just waiting to know the date.

My house is changing just like my life has been changing. It's a new phase of life now. I am trying to get used to it. I don't know if I can. I haven't given up yet, though. I hope to get through it and be smiling on the other side.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Just Found This....

I blogged this over a year ago and never published it. My daughter will be a senior in high school this year. Who is going to take the picture this fall when her last year of school starts?


We have a tradition in our family that on the first day of school after my daughter is dressed and ready to go I take a picture of her with her hands displaying the number of the grade she is starting. From these pictures you can see that this is her tenth grade year.

In Hot Water

Last night I got home and went to take a shower when my husband's studio flooded with an inch of hot water. We found out that the water heater built up a lot of pressure and steaming hot water gushed out of the overflow pipe. A few weeks ago I had purchased new elements for the water heater and decided to get super duper double coil stainless steel elements. I found out last night that the elements were just too powerful and made the water boil.

I should have realized this because after installing them we burned ourselves several times in the shower and even the kitchen/bathroom sinks. We adjusted the elements to as low of a temperature as they could go and still got burned.

We now have new elements that aren't super duper and aren't burning us either.

Just another day in paradise.

Thursday, July 8, 2010


I miss my daughter a lot. Last night I cried myself to sleep. This morning I woke up and am at work and have almost cried several times already and it's only 8:00am.

I saw her yesterday afternoon after work. It was good to see her and we laughed a lot together. When I was driving her back to her Dad's house for some reason I got confused on which side of the fork in the road I should take. I took the wrong one asking her if it was the correct way and she said it was. After a bit I realized that it was the wrong way and asked if she realized it and she said that she did. I asked why in the world did she say to go that way and she said, "Well, Mom, I'm spending time with you and I don't want it to end". I so badly wanted to say, "Well you are the one that moved out, not me" but I didn't.

It was obvious that she was excited to be together. I heard about all of the things she is doing at her Dad's house and have quit asking myself why she left. I now ask myself why would she have stayed? She gets to do practically everything she wants to do no matter what. If I was 17 years old I would want to live there as well.

It hurts so much. I badly want to blog about what happened the days leading up to her moving out, but I can't just yet. It's just so very upsetting to talk about it all. I still can't believe how she left. That is what I'm more in shock about versus that she is actually gone.

It is nice to see my daughter and yet at the same time when I take her back to her father's house and drive away I just start crying and can't stop.

I'm currently taking a finance class where I learned that net present value (or NPV) equals benefits minus the cost. You want an NPV of at least 1.0 or more. In this situation I believe my NPV is -10. If it were a business it would be a bad decision to see her. It's not a business decision though and the pain continues. I wonder if it will ever get to at least a 1.0. I deserve for it to be at least a 1.0 or more.

I am devastated.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

July 27th is the Day

I found out that July 27th is my day in court for the bankruptcy. I thought I would meet before a judge and instead will be meeting with the creditors and also the trustee that I will be paying money to every month for the next five years for my Chapter 13 bankruptcy.

For the next five years if I want to do anything like selling assets such as the house or wanting to be part of a payment plan I need to pay my attorney $350 an incident in order for them to do paperwork to get it approved by a judge. Right now I'm saving money for a car. If I went to a dealership to finance a car I would need to go in front of a judge. If I save the money and pay for it in cash there is no need to go in front of the judge. I would rather pay in cash anyway and not have a montly payment. I don't see how I can afford a car until around February of next year. Right now I've been using my parents car and carpooling with a guy that lives down the road from me who works where I do.

Today I see my daughter after work. It's been quite surreal spending time with her after what happened. I am trying to make it work, though. It is obvious when I see her that she really misses me a lot and is excited to be spending time together. I am not there yet. I suppose the pain will go away over time and it will get easier as it goes. I hope so, at least.

I am taking two courses this quarter. One is a finance course and I'm learning that I never realized how many ways you can look at money. There are a lot of formulas, a lot of homework and I hope I get through with an "A". I don't want to mess up my 4.0 GPA. I have one more quarter after this one and will be graduating with my Bachelor's of Science in computer information systems in December. I can't wait.

I am thinking about going for a Master's afterwards. I'm not sure yet.

Well, July 27 here we go. I'm still waiting to find out when my other court date will be when I meet with a federal judge about my security clearance for work. So far I've received seven reference letters. I hope the judge rules in my favor.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Bankruptcy is Now Official

June 18th marked the day that I officially declared bankruptcy. I've felt physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually bankrupt for years and now I have a piece of paper to prove it.

In one way I'm glad that I finally did it. I've had financial issues since I was in the psychiatric hospital for depression about three years ago. Prior to flying into the cuckoo's nest my bills were current, I always paid on time and my credit score was 786. After being in the hospital, I lost my job for the first time in my life, went without a paycheck for a while, got behind on everything and my credit score plummeted to less than 500.

I visited financial advisors who all said I needed to declare bankruptcy. I didn't want to do it due to the stigma of it all and also I was a contractor and was worried that I would lose my job or have issues in getting another job when the contract was over. I've now been full-time for almost a year and felt that I needed to go ahead and get it over with.

I recently met with a bankruptcy attorney who said after viewing my financials that I needed to do it. I got all of the paperwork together (my gawd, the paperwork is incredible!), saved $800 to pay the attorney and on June 18 they filed the paperwork with the court. I still have to go to a court hearing to have it finalized with a judge and am currently waiting to know the date of the hearing.

Not only will I be going to court once this summer, I will actually be going twice. In my job I need to have a C2 security clearance due to the nature of my work and because of my credit issues the federal agency who grants the clearance recently notified me that they could not decide if I should have the clearance or not and said that I had a choice of having a federal judge decide based on viewing my paperwork or request a hearing so that I could make a case before the judge prior to their decision. I opted for the hearing so that the judge could see me in person and hopefully ascertain that I'm not some deadbeat person.

If I don't receive the security clearance I could lose my job. I am the breadwinner and am scared to death of this.

The federal attorney working on the case contacted me last week notifying me of the process and suggested that I gather evidence of why I'm in the financial mess I'm in. She also said it would be good to gather written character references from people to present to the judge as well as any other documentation to show what type of person I am due to the judge performing a "whole person analysis" in the court hearing. I've already asked some people to write references and have received seven so far. What people have said in these references brought tears to my eyes because I didn't expect such glowing words. I wish I could believe what people have written about me.

I've also made copies of my university transcripts to show the judge that I'm a senior holding a 4.0 GPA with only three classes left. I was able to find documents of me going to financial advisors in the past to prove that I tried to take care of my debt and will explain that I am just now pursuing bankruptcy because I am a full-time employee and was worried about claiming bankruptcy as a contract worker. I found the discharge papers from the hospital which I will present as well as my credit score reports from Experian, Equifax and Transunion that show my payment history was stellar prior to the date of me going into the hospital. I don't know if it will help, but I'm also going to present past reviews at work as well as my DD-214 (discharge papers from the Navy) showing an honorable discharge.

The person who hired me where I work now is also going to go to the court hearing with me to give an in-court character reference. I knew him years ago when I worked where I work now (yes, I now work full-time at the same place I was fired at years ago after being in the hospital). He knew me back then and will be able to testify what type of person and employee I've been and to state that he knew I was in the hospital years ago and have been doing better since then.

What's ironic is that I had this security clearance when I worked here before. I will notify the judge of this as well as telling him/her that I had an even higher security clearance while in the Navy. I hope that the bankruptcy will go through first so that I can also present the bankruptcy paperwork to the federal judge. If not I will still present the case number and paperwork the bankruptcy attorney filed on my behalf. I was scared of filing bankruptcy prior to the federal hearing and only hope that the federal judge will see that I'm trying to take care of my debt instead of just letting it go and not doing anything about it.

I have a Chapter 13 bankruptcy which I'm glad about because I will need to pay a certain sum of money every month for the next five years. To me it's better than a Chapter 7 because in the Chapter 7 you don't need to pay a thing. Though I won't be paying the exact amount I owe to the credit companies, I feel good knowing that I'm at least paying something.

It's strange to think that not only did I lose my daughter, I lost my car (I had a Volkswagen Jetta before but am now driving an extra car my parents have that has no air conditioning while saving money for a car that I can purchase outright and have no car payment), I am now officially bankrupt and yet I've still not lost my sanity.

The monster called insanity is irresistibly close and I hope I don't jump off the cliff. I'm barely hanging in there. At least I'm not in the psychiatric ward again. Maybe I'm stronger than I realized.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Slimming Down

I feel a bit better today. My mood is a yo-yo flipping around being banged into walls.

I haven't blogged about this yet (just like I haven't blogged about A LOT of things lately) and wanted to put out there that I've lost 26 pounds. Weight is my nemesis (along with depression) and I have finally been able to beat its butt while going on the HCG diet. I'm not a fan of fad diets but had to try this one out after watching a girl in my office melt pounds by the day. I visited and ordered the 40-day kit and lost 26 pounds in that amount of time. HCG is a hormone found in pregnant women and I used drops three times a day and the weight dropped off like flies being squirted with insecticide.

I'm now on the maintenance phase of the diet for the next forty days and hope that the pounds don't magically reappear. After being in maintenance for forty days I'll then go back on the HCG drops for another forty days and hopefully after the second maintenance phase I'll finally be at the weight I've wanted for the last few years.

I've gone down from a size 22/24 (whoa, nelly!) to an 18. I feel more physically healthy and not as tired. On the diet I lost 26 pounds but before trying HCG I lost a bit of weight and since July of last year I've lost a total of 41 pounds. Let's hope I keep it off and continue to slim it down.

Now let me go and eat a little chicken salad before attending the next meeting at work. I do have to admit that I am quickly tiring of chicken salad. Why does it have to be so difficult?

Monday, June 28, 2010

She's Really Gone

I can hardly see the monitor through crying. I've been crying for the past hour and can't seem to stop.


I was a mother who had a child to take care of every day and now she doesn't live here anymore. How do you stop cold turkey like this? I can't believe she left the way she did. We have always been so very close. She followed me everywhere around the house like a duck. I couldn't even go to the bathroom without her barging in. When she barged into the bathroom she would have a huge smile on her face and say, "Yep, I'm here following you!", I would pick on her saying, "OMG, I can't even go to the bathroom!" and then she would plop down on the tub and chat about the world.

No one barges in on me anymore. It is quiet now and I never asked for that.

There is no patter of feet echoing after me in the house. The house is like a morgue. No music, no TV blaring, no lights to cut off, no mess to clean up.

This part of my life is over. It is over before it was supposed to finish. I'M NOT FUCKING DONE YET!!! I AM NOT FINISHED RAISING MY DAUGHTER, DAMN IT ALL!

I sound like she's dead. She's not. She lives with her father now. She feels like she's dead though. It hurts so much.

She didn't leave like some teens do saying "eff you, I'm outta here!". No...she made SO MUCH FUCKING DAMAGE that I don't even know what to do, where to turn or how to act. I don't even know how I can be a grandmother one day and have her children visit me. I don't know what the future holds.

All I do know is that it wasn't supposed to happen this way. She was supposed to be with me until she finished high school and then go to college. I was supposed to cry as she left for university and help her move to that next place. I was supposed to talk with her on the phone and ask how college was doing and start forging a life without her as I should because she went to the next step.

She took away my last school year of raising her. As a parent, don't you dream about your child's senior year? In a way, you feel that you accomplished something because you helped them get there. She took that away from me. Now her father can raise her the last year of school acting like the cool-ass dad letting her do whatever she fucking well pleases, whether it's good for her or not. He can now make up for all of those years that he didn't have much to do with her by letting her get her nose pierced, get gauges in her ears, tattoos, go out with "friends" that will most definitely steer her the wrong way and get addicted to drugs/alcohol and get pregnant all at the same time. Yeah, he's such a COOL FUCKING DAD!

If she wants to get gauges in her ears and tattoos/piercings everywhere, so be it. I just wanted her to get to the age of 18 before she decided to do it. Right now she wants these things because her friends have it. She doesn't want it for herself. She just wants to be a sheep and look like everyone else. I would talk with her a lot and tell her to do things for herself. If she wants her whatever body part pierced, it's her prerogative but ONLY if she wanted to do it for herself and not because Jane down the street has one. Am I so bad to say that? I just wasn't cool enough wanting her to be independent and doing things for herself.

I remember wanting a tattoo badly as a teen and also wanting my eyebrow pierced. My mother completely forbid it and I just KNEW I would do it once I got out on my own. Guess what happened? When I got out on my own, I thought about doing it and didn't. Why? Because I just wasn't in the same phase. It wasn't as important to me as it was when I was younger. She may feel the same way. The problem is she'll have a hole in her nose and ears that she'll be able to fit a DVD into if she wants.

I saw her Saturday. We went to lunch. I took her to work afterwards and watched her walk inside as I sat in my car. It hit me so powerfully that....she's gone. She's really gone. This phase of my life is over and I don't know how to let go.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I Am That Person

I can't believe how I don't blog any more. I really need to get back into it. It's just I am sick and tired of talking about how sick and tired I am. Do you ever get to a point where you don't want to complain? I am there and have been there for a while.

In my everyday world I don't complain. I am that person you see walking down the hall at work who nods and smiles at you. I am that person in the grocery store who smiles if eye contact is established. I am that person who doesn't talk about her personal life. I am that person who even my friends don't know what's going on or how I am feeling. I am that person who is there for her family and friends but don't know how to be there for myself. I am that person who always asks how you are doing when you ask how am I doing.

This blog is the only place where I can really say how I feel. Unfortunately, because I do not express how I feel to people who actually know me, I feel free to express how I really feel here in this blog and what comes out like rusty water from a gushing faucet? My shit, my woes, my anger, my depression, my dissatisfaction and you, reader, have to subject yourself to it if you decide to read.

I feel that it's a disservice to you. I don't want to do that to you. Even though I don't personally know you, the blogging world makes you feel like you do and I find myself wanting to be that person in the grocery store giving a warm smile instead of showing my sadness.

I have thought about turning off the option for readers to comment. I feel awful when I don't reply to all comments. I feel like I am using my readers for self-gratification. On the other hand, you have all helped me so very much. More than family and friends because you know what's going on. So, what to do?

I haven't had time to even visit all of your blogs either and that is another reason to feel guilty.

So, I've stayed away from the blogging community.

Do you have any advice? Should I turn off the comments? Should I feel guilty? Should I continue to blog? If I do, how do I stop feeling guilty for complaining so much?

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Everything is Falling Apart

So much has happened. I haven't posted here in forever because frankly I felt tired of complaining. I feel that complaining is all I do here and I wanted to end the cycle. Because I was tired of complaining, I didn't know what to write about anymore. There was no urge to write.

The urge to write isn't back. It's just I had to voice something. I am completely devastated. My daughter is now living with her father. She moved out two weeks ago. I still cannot believe it.

Every day is an effort to continue. Every day something happens in a negative way and I have gotten numb to it. I want to stop this cycle of negativity. I want to stop the tragedies. I want to stop the bad news. I want to stop the depression and loneliness. I want to stop the blame and the shame and the anger and the confusion. I want to stop everything. I want to stop my life.

I'm surprised I'm not dead or in a hospital.

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