Friday, November 21, 2008

Cole Craziness

So I had a work trip this week to Atlanta. It was as trip I needed to make because with it came resolution. When I landed in Dallas on Wednesday evening, I couldn't wait to go get Cole. I hate it when I have to leave him overnight. There are times that I don't mind so much as it's nice to sleep uninterrupted, but for the most part it kills me.

Getting to him took longer than I wanted it to because the obnoxious flight crew in Atlanta made me check my bag, so I had to wait at baggage claim, then I couldn't use the SkyLink and then I found myself waiting for a stupid bus to get me from Terminal D back to Terminal C. All this while needing to pee like a race horse. Good times had by all while traveling for business.

Finally, I get to see Cole and I am reminded why I do any of this. After the reunion, I do what any parent does. I futally tried to win back affection for the abandonment and took him for a chocolate shake which in Cole speak is "choca cake" before dinner and then drooled as he slurped it down and I had a diet soda. Then we were off to get home and gear up for a run with Tobie before it got too dark. I strapped Cole in the jogging stroller, tethered Tobie's leash to the stroller..handed Cole his Thomas the Tank Engine flashlight.. turned on my iPod and we were off. About a mile into my run... Cole began chanting "go go go Mommy" All I could think was someday he'll have to push my butt around in a wheelchair and I hope I remember to beat my cane on the ground and chant "go go go Cole!!" Perhaps there will be some retaliation for the past two years of really nasty diapers too. Who knows?

I ran and when we got back to the house, I unstrapped Cole and he immediately started in with
"Sit Mommy. Sit" So I let Tobie in the house to cool down and assumed the "sit" position with Cole on my front step. We passed the bottle (of water) back and forth and commenced serious conversation. I began by saying " Cole I hope I'm not screwing up your life?" He looked at me.. and pointed to the sky "Mommy Plane!! Dights" (the plane had it's lights on if there was any doubt) Clearly he's concerned about my screwing up his life too. We talked about the cars, my flowers, Tobie, the planes, icky poo poo and dights. He's two. His vocabulary is somewhat limited. I took a deep breath in and let it out. Cole mimicked me and then snuggled up close to me. I only had a moment to squeeze in a hug before I smelled icky poo poo and my priceless memory of invaluable time with Cole was drawn to a close..

"Cole did you poop?"

He looked me right in the eyes, shook his head and said "No.." Clearly he has a future in politics.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Feeling a Little Blue

I'm usually a really upbeat person. I get a little bogged down sometimes.. generally I allow myself time to work through whatever I'm feeling & then I move on: hopeful.

The hits have just kept coming lately. I feel sort of like I've been knocked down and I'm having a little bit of difficulty picking myself back up. Work stress. Life stress. I've had to make a really hard decision about my Tobie dog, and the holidays are fast approaching.

This week Tobie (my mutt of a dog) will go to live with his Dad. I rescued Tobie from a local no kill animal shelter with my ex a couple of months after we were married. I had a little Westie (Sophie) that was mine pre-marriage and so Tobie was always meant to be my ex's dog. We both spoiled him. Will a little more than me as he seemed to think that everything Tobie did (obnoxious or not) was cute. Sophie died several years after marriage and I couldn't bring myself to attach to another dog. Tobie was our child until Cole. When Will & I split we agreed Tobie would stay with me because of Will's crazy firefighter schedule and to not upset him as he had always lived in our home. I've done everything I could to feel like Tobie was really my dog and offer him enough love, but somewhere deep in my heart he is just a painful reminder to me. As crazy as it sounds, Will paid more attention to the dog and his needs than he ever did to me. Don't get me wrong... I love Tobie greatly and always will, but since our parting Tobie mourned Will leaving. He's grown more out of control and taken to biting me, Cole, other people and kids and so Will has worked with me and is coming to take Tobie to live with him. I can't have a biter around Cole, but it still breaks my heart to see him go and to think of my house without a dog. I am a lover of dogs and it seems like just one more thing I'll have to mourn and worry about eventhough I know it's for the best. Tobie needs to be with Will. He'll be happier and I have to let him go.

Mawiage is what brings us together today..
Chris, my big brother, got married last weekend. I was so happy for him and I know that's he's found his partner in life. I am excited to watch him start his life with Rachel. But attending any wedding since my divorce is painful and hard. I still believe in marriage. I don't live in a dream world where it's easy and doesn't take work every single day. It's a comittment, a spiritual union, but I still think when you find a true partner it has to be the most fulfilling relationship possible? Will I ever have the opportunity to experience that sort of relationship and how could I ever promise anyone "forever" again? This weighs on me.

This is usually my favorite time of year.. I love the fall and the Holiday season. I love dragging out the Christmas ornaments and putting up my tree and dorky Christmas carols. I love cooking Holiday food and coming up with a crazy idea for the Peterson family Christmas card complete with a picture of us in matching santa hats or red sweaters or whatever. But this year I'll climb up in my attic and sift through all of the ornaments and know I'll have to box up all the ones I'd collected through the years for Will because he didn't have any of his childhood ones when we got married. There will be firetrucks, stockings & dog ornaments and things that aren't really symbolic last box of things to pack up for someone who never could invest in me the same way I invested in him...I'm going to need some Mommy Juice.

Watching my brother get married, learning that my cousin's wife is pregnant with baby no. 2 made me sad for Cole as well. If you're lucky there is special bond when you grow up with a sibling. There will always be someone who knows every childhood wound or heartache.. who understands your difficult relationship with your parents and truly gets you in every sense of the word. I've always sort of had that with my brother. We may fight or disagree or snap at each other... but the history, love and respect is there. I'd do anything for my brother. It hurts my heart that Cole might never have a sibling to grow up with. After explaining this to Counselor Sherri, she smiled and said

"well yes, but Cole has a Mom that will over compensate in other ways.."

I nodded and replied " I know God has a plan for me..but this isn't what I had in mind.."

she smiled and said "His path is best and only He knows what's in store for's hard, but you have to trust.."

There's a concept.

I'll work on that one while I finish my lunch and get back to work. But I'll be back with more positive ramblings after the intermission. Holla!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

How Did I Get Here?

I've had an interesting couple of weeks on the work front. A lot of accusations about me not advising my client of something...threats... me producing valid documentation that I did in fact present the information and gain approval. How did I land in a world where daily I feel like I'm operating in CYA mode... That's "Cover Your Ass " in case you were wondering. I've learned that CYA is just the nature of the business, but I'm still sick of it. Now I'm in "earn the trust back mode" when I never should have lost it? I did my job exactly as I should have.

Growing up I always wanted to be someone who helped people. A nurse, a physical therapist, a psychologist or something? All I help people do now is acquire real estate: at the best possible price, in the most efficient amount of time, and with the least amount of legal or financial exposure. I pondered this as I stared at my laptop and my office covered with Cole pics, with my headset on my head, in my thinking mode (which is sitting Indian style in my office chair with my heels kicked off) did I get here?

I know the answer. A series of events in College that led to the Bank I worked for reimbursing me for a lot of my upper level classes as long as they were business related. I made sure they were. I was a Finance Major with a minor in Real Estate. It came easy to me. It seemed logical. I landed a good job fresh out of college with a great commercial Real Estate firm in Dallas. I'd even say they were the best commercial Real Estate firm in Dallas. I started at the bottom and have worked my way to where I am now. Now I've sort of mommy tracked my career. The next level of advancement would mean less time with Cole and more time traveling and managing people and I'm not willing to make that sacrifice right now. Good thing the economy is in the crapper because I don't really have an opportunity for the next level. It makes me feel less guilty about not being more pro-active in my advancement.

So as I think about the things that led me this really my calling in life? Because I'm good at it and can make an okay living? Or am I missing a world where I would be totally satisfied and fulfilled by my career? Is it God's will for me to be here when all of the steps along the way have been easy or have I missed a greater calling by always doing what's comfortable?

I don't hate my job. Most days I enjoy it and feel like I'm a contributing member of society. I'm also really good at it. But are these things that make a worthwhile career or have I missed the point? OK..I'm turning off the computer and going to bed. I have to bring my "A" game at the office tomorrow. But can someone please tell me what I'm meant to be when I grow up?


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Hmm.. Politics...

“If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible…who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time, who still questions the power of Democracy..tonight is your answer..”
-Barack Obama

Gathering my thoughts for this blog has taken me some time. Political views are never easy to discuss. This Presidential election raised much emotion in the United States. I felt fairly passionately about it. I caucused in the Primary and found myself awe inspired that for the first time there was a possibility that a woman or an African American man could be the President elect. In my dream world Obama & Hillary would have been on the same ticket. In our discussions of this Presidential campaign, I asked Marketing Boy if he remembered thinking as a child if he would ever see a black man or a woman as President. His answer was honest... He hadn’t really thought about it. He just assumed he would.

I had. I’d thought about it as a young girl... our parents tell us that there aren’t any limitations, but there always have been. Presidents, the highest political office, the Commanders in Chief, the leaders of the free world… have always been white men. I pondered and even journaled about it as a girl… “Will I live to see a Woman be President?” I hated watching the media attack Hillary because she cried or because of supposed cankles or because she was too tough or not sensitive enough? She couldn’t win any way she presented herself?

Politics in my family has always been an interesting coversation. My father’s family was die hard Republican. My mother’s were Democrats. My Mom and Dad did a fairly good job of selecting candidates and not always voting within party lines... but the battle ground was present. Democrat or Republican?

I don’t consider myself a die hard liberal. But if one were to look at my voting track record…I voted to re-elect Clinton in 1996, let’s just say I didn’t vote for Bush either time (not that it matters in the Great State of Texas) and I didn’t vote for McCain in this election. I realize in the Christian community, in the professional community of which I am a part, and amongst many of my family and friends that makes me a minority. I certainly don’t discuss politics in the office because well the day after the election my client began forwarding me “Obama is the anti-Christ” "The end is near" emails. I’ve received the email chains that Obama is not really a citizen because his father was an African Muslim and that his birth certificate is wrong, so he couldn’t possibly be a citizen? I’ve seen the You Tube videos showing working class America going on and on about Barack HUSSEIN Obama. The spelling of his name apparently makes him a terrorist? Someone even commented to me that if I voted for Obama- I was responsible for our country going to “hell in a hand basket.” Wow….

I’ll spare you the break down of the issues and my stance. I have a very real opinion on all of them, but I didn’t agree 100% with either candidate’s stance on them. I had to look at the bundle of issues and make my call. I did so without ever saying “McCain is the Anti-Christ” Truthfully, when McCain gave his concession speech I thought to myself “that’s a class act” there is the man that I expected to see run the campaign for the Presidency

My thoughts, however random, are getting a little lost. When I watched Obama give his victory speech, I knew I was witnessing history. We might not all believe in his views, but 70% of registered voters turned out to vote in this Presidential election.

I read an article not long ago that made an interesting correlation. Great American leaders have either come from strong political backgrounds with strong male role models (ie the Kennedy’s) or they have rose above their means or situation and did so without a strong Father figure present (Clinton or Obama). Barack Hussein Obama may have a crazy sounding name. His father was a Muslim and not born in the United States..but Barack was. That makes him an American Citizen and qualified to lead. He rose above his situation to gain an education. He has served his community and his State as a Senator. He is a practicing Christian and while he has been linked to some fairly questionable people in the past—haven’t we all? Can’t we celebrate his efforts to better himself? Appreciate his willingness to serve?

Regardless of our views or our vote…We have set an example for our children, finally, that there are no limitations. Obama inspired an entire generation that “Yes We Can.” He reached across party and racial lines. Let’s see what he does with it and realize that great accomplishments often begin when we embrace change.

This liberal has a Lean Cuisine hiding in my Get Hip Get Green lunch bag. Time to go nuke it , recycle the container and eat some lunch. Holla!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Toys Toys Mommy!!

Thanks to the Target Corporation for sending out the mega toy catalog.. Cole saw it.."Toys! Book!!" he proclaimed and grabbed it from me with his sticky, grubby, chunky little toddler mits..Then he carried it to the coffee table where he could place it at exactly the right reading/thumbing through it height and looked at it cover to cover..proclaiming "Wow!" at every page.

When he got to a page with a choo choo or a Car... He's pick it up.."Mommy! Thomas...Purcy!!" or CARS!!" Just like the shampoo bottle says "rinse lather repeat" Cole felt it necessary to peruse the Toy catalog twenty times.. The most exciting page to him was the one with the train table....

Doh! Where the heck am I gonna put a train table? Coffee Table or Train Table?.. messes with my whole Pottery Barn motif..but what the heck. Choo choo! Santa sign me up. Do you want my MasterCard number now or later for a "priceless" Christmas morning?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Chocolate In My....

I am a Mom. I try not to be that Mom that goes on and on about my child all the time... but I have to say that Cole was the cutest possible train conductor for Halloween. I couldn't get him to wear the red bandanna or the work gloves, but that's okay. We only had one meltdown when it was time to call trick or treating quits but he said "t-a-n-k-s" for every piece of candy..I was so proud.
We worked on "trick or treat" for a couple of weeks leading up to Halloween. Cole had a Thomas the Train trick or treat pale, so "trick or treat" became "Chocolate in my Choo Choo" At least he gets points for being consistent. Every house I'd say "trick or treat" & he would chime in with his chocolate choo choo greatness. It was pretty classic.. Oh so cute.
And when all of the trick or treating was done.. I put him in his jammies, we said our prayers, I told him I loved him and he was so tired that he all but climbed up into his crib himself. He assumed his butt up sleeping position and dreamed of treats in his choo choo.