January 2008


in the shower over the weekend, I was singing.  this is really the only place I sing, other than to emma, who does not yet know the difference between good singing-which I am not-and bad singing-which I am.

my lovely husband came rushing into the bathroom and asked if everything was okay.

me:    of course everything is okay, why?

him:    I thought I heard one of the cats hollering in here

he’s so lucky I love him, otherwise I would have done worse than throwing water at him.

even though I worried about the door falling off, I still took the time to snap off a couple of shots before I dislodged her. she thinks she’s hot stuff, that little stinkerbell of mine.

it’s not cool to cut the seat, pull the stuffing out, and set it on fire on a brand new bus…well, probably any bus

bosses don’t like it when you show up thirty minutes late, for a 4 hour shift…especially when you do it 3 days in a row.

bosses also don’t like it when you decide to come to work 2 hours late-again for a 4 hour shift-wearing bib overalls and a t-shirt instead of your casual uniform of khakis and black shirt.

it’s impossible to keep a job after such blatant disrespect

kmart won’t prosecute theft of less than $20 dollars. no matter if you steal 2 -not 1 but 2- boxes of razor blades to open 2 different batteries for a psp, neither of which fit. if you don’t have any of that in your possession, they won’t count it. only the psp carrying case that is actually in your pants will count against you. and if it’s under $20, you get to walk away. of course you don’t get to keep the case in your pants, but still…

a thumbdrive is the same thing as a jumpdrive or flashdrive.

it’s not illegal to possess the anarchist’s handbook, darkstorm’s compendium of destruction and mayhem, and many many other instruction manuals on bomb making and the fine art of credit card fraud, among MANY other heinous and frightening acts of havoc and vandalism.

this thumbdrive will hold ENDLESS amounts of this totally legal information.

2 sheriff deputies will visit your foster parents’ home when they find that you’ve downloaded this stuff from the internet. they will sit in the kitchen with you and the foster parents and your bio parents; and they’ll say all the things you’ve heard hundreds of people say for the last 12 years: you’re a smart kid…this is not the path you want to be on…the future is a golden opportunity, just set your mind right…prison is not a fun place…you’re surrounded by all these people who love you, they don’t want to see you follow this path…how can you do this to your parents?…as smart as you are, the possibilities are endless…

finally, the last thing I learned this week, is that even with each new act of destruction or defiance or mutiny…even though we ask ourselves ‘what next?’, even though I’m no longer surprised by these acts…I learned that it still hurts. after all this time, all these glitches in the ‘experience of kris’, it still breaks my heart every time. EVERY. TIME.

today, my baby girl turns 20.  I can’t figure out where the last 20 years have gone, but I’d kinda like to have them back.  I love this girl so much, I love her spirit, her independence, the life that she leads; but I miss my baby.  I know, every mother’s lament, right?

for her birthday dinner, she wants burritos and peanut butter cheesecake.  so tomorrow sometime, we’ll have the whole clan here, plus a couple of extras, and we’ll behave like gringos eating mexican food.  I’ve never made peanut butter cheesecake before.  it sounds good, though.

me:   hey honey, I’ve been thinkin’ about something and I want your input.

him:    sure, fire away.

me:    well, you know how your friend john’s last name is spelled yownt, but it’s pronounced yunt?

him:    yeah…

me:    and you know how roy blount jr’s last name is spelled blownt, but is pronounced blunt?

him:    (confused) uh huh..

me:    well, why do you suppose count is both spelled and pronounced cownt?

him:    (after he realizes what I’m getting at) good Lord, woman!  why do you think of such things?!

during the after-christmas sales last year, I got these words, noel and joy. this year when we brought out the goods, I was excited to see them again (is that depressing, that I get excited over such things?) on christmas day, when the family was here, my brother and jessica apparently conspired to change them around. I didn’t notice the change for several days-that’s how observant I am.

on the shelves are 6 of my nativities. my favorite altogether is the one behind the e. tony made it in preschool, out of a box corner. inside, he used marker to draw the people, and drew baby jesus on a piece of wood. somewhere I also have a baby jesus he made me out of a sock. he stuffed it, drew a face, then wrapped a piece of felt around it for the swaddling cloth. he can’t understand why I love these two little things so much. ah, well, someday he will.

p.s. for a little more insight into me, notice the bottom shelf filled with armestead maupin, stephanie plum, and harry potter, with father tim and several bibles above. hmm, you know, I never really paid attention until I looked at this picture, it’s all rather contradictory, isn’t it?

I have this new friend, I’ve known her for 5 or 6 years, but only as of yesterday would I say we bonded. we’re somewhat related by marriage, in that one of her relatives is married to one of my peeps.

on the off chance that she or the relative we have in common read this (which I really doubt) I’ll call her j.

j and her family lived here in my carolina corner for a couple of years, and we never really spent much time together, aside from family gatherings. it’s not that we disliked each other all that much, it’s just that we’re two very different people.

they moved up north about 3 years ago, and I’ve only seen her a handful of times. she’s made some big changes in her life, which have not only made her a different person, but have given us more common ground. of course I may have changed a bit, too. ( I hope for the better)

so, when j moved back north, her second daughter stayed here, shacked up with a bad guy. he abuses her, he’s been in and out of jail-both for the abuse, and due to his illegal means of making money. daughter and bad guy quickly had a child. bad guy’s family doesn’t like daughter, because they would like to see him not only straighten his life out, but tie himself to someone of his own race.

the first time daughter called home, they came to get her. she stayed with her parents for a few months, before disappearing in the night. for almost a year they didn’t hear from her, didn’t know how she or the baby were doing, didn’t know if he had killed her like he had so often threatened to do.

then, while on the run from the police, he was arrested for something else. he was sent away for close to a year, so she went home to her family. he was released a “changed man” and went to live up north to be with her. soon after, they were on the run again.

a few months go by, she gets tired of the abuse, she calls mama. here they come, j and her husband, to get this girl again. she stayed with them for a few more months before disappearing in the night again.

then, this past november, she called again. this time stuart and mandi got involved. they went to pick her up, and bad guy came after them. mandi had the baby-almost 3 by then-and he tried to snatch her away. stuart was worried he would be forced to hurt bad guy to protect his wife. luckily the sheriff arrived before it got any more violent.

this arrest, however, resulted in charges being filed, for which daughter had to appear in court. this meant that j had to bring her back down here in early december. for one or another reason, it was carried over and they had to come back nearer christmas. once again, it was carried over and daughter had to come back to appear on the 14th.

this time, though, j chose to fly on skybus. they arrived sunday morning. they were bunking at mama’s until this morning.

here’s where it goes south. sunday night, bad guy’s mama comes and picks up daughter and not-so much baby. they never come back, so j went to court, hoping daughter would be there. no such luck. so she and I ended up hanging out for the afternoon; this is when I realized that she’s a different person than she used to be.

we had great conversation.  we talked about the junk we do for our kids, and wondered why we continue to do it.  she mentioned that every time daughter leaves, she tells herself ‘this is it.  I’m done, I can’t do this again’.  but then another teary, pleading phone call, and what’s a mama to do?  we can’t seem to find that line, you know, the one between enough and enough…

so anyway, this morning, she flew out by herself, still having not heard anything from daughter. if not for past history, and taking into consideration that fact that daughter is extremely self absorbed, everyone would be concerned that something has happened to her. but knowing that she’s done this before-both times she left in the night, she took only what she and the baby were wearing-there’s much more anger and confusion than fright.

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