59 Days

At 8:20 AM EST today, I will begin my 60th year on this planet.

Okay, before a sister corrects me… yes, I’m only “turning” 59, but it actually celebrates the completion of another full year. To celebrate, I’m giving myself 59 days of taking better care of me. They might not be consecutive, which would royally defeat the purpose, so I’m thinking every time one of MY days gets blown off, I should start the count all over again.

The 59 days is a journey of sorts… I’ll blog about that later… right now, it’s late and I have babes on the porch. The feral cat that I call “Quarter Cat” has been bringing her 4 kittens over here to eat at night. They’re almost as skittish as she is… I can sit quietly and watch them, but they will bolt off the porch at my slightest movement. Quarter Cat avoids humans. After months of eating here, she still watches me from a distance. Even when her kittens are on the porch, she will stay out in the shadows if I’m there. Or, hide under the old wicker “cat chair” that KiKi claimed as her own, close enough to hiss a warning when I go to walk into the house.

Considering the uncanny resemblance to Max, I think he’s the daddy.

That surprised me because I didn’t think he was old enough… seeing how they look to be at least a month old, Max couldn’t have been more than 3 or 4 months old himself around the time of conception. We talked about getting him fixed, the vet (as in military veteran, not a pet doc) asked me not to, so I put it off for a bit.

I like watching how they interact as a family unit. Max guards the kittens while they are on the porch at night. I’ve seen him walking the perimeter, staring off into the shadows.

MORNING: Here’s a photo snapped Wednesday morning while peeking out the window… Max and Quarter Cat are the two near my neighbor’s skillet (she tried to lure the babes to her house with a pan of food, got hissed at, and left it on my porch.) And, that’s KiKi Gath Ddu, the neighborhood Queen of Cats, sleeping on concrete while another cat’s kittens are curled up in her chair.

Trump could take lessons… that’s KiKi’s chair, she rules from that chair, but even a cat knows you don’t let babes sleep on concrete.

I call KiKi the Queen of Cats because she is the Alpha Female on this block. She controls which strays are allowed in my yard. I tried to adopt her last year, but she flat out refused to be domesticated. She’s an outdoor cat, wants life on her terms, and pretty much told me how it is… even when temps dropped below zero, she flat out refused to come in. So, I started feeding her on the porch, setting out enough for her and her feral friends, and my neighbor set her up with an outdoor shelter. Yes, she turned my porch into some kind of midnight diner for cats who totally avoid humans. I suspected Quarter Cat was one of the few she allowed to eat here, but never saw her on the porch until she started bringing her kittens.

That same neighbor who left her skillet on my porch wants to neuter all the cats. She’s going to have to TNR their ass as KiKi is the only one who will let a human close enough to pet her and she’s already fixed.

Well, suppose I should start this day… or go back to bed. Thanks for reading!

Hot Box Blues 

Do you know what I miss most about my old friend? The ability to openly and candidly discuss anything. Ironically, my inability to do exactly that is what destroyed our friendship. And it is not just the conversations that I miss. The friendship I valued dearly is gone and the person I deeply cared about, and still to this day care about, abruptly axed me out of his life.  He’s one of those guys who thinks it is “cheating” if a woman with a boyfriend has male friends.

I still catch myself looking for a familiar scrawl when I sort the mail. Alas, there is no redemption for a woman who wants her cake and eat it, too.

PHOTO:  cake with grandchildren last Sunday.

Speaking of cake, today is my 57th birthday. My sister Dee treated me to lunch at Pandora’s and then we did a bit of shopping.  While I was gone, the old G locked the house down tighter than a drum and took off to the VA so when I came home, it was like walking into a frickin hot box.

LATER:  Well, plans for our evening cookout got hi-jacked while I was making beans and potato salad… the old G hopped the last bus downtown at 6:45 PM. His plan was to stop at his apartment to get his meds, then take the 7:15 nightline bus back down South Ave, get off at the store, buy some ears of corn, and walk home… total round trip ye maybe an hour. It’s now past 10 and I’ve no idea when he will be here. He did text awhile back, said his daughter is coming, so I assume he is still at his apartment downtown waiting on her to give him a ride.

This is one of those things that really matters when you are young, but age makes you more prone to be more understanding. He is a disabled vet, has metal rods in both legs, and walks with a cane. I know he dreads that 20 minute walk into our hood from the store on South Ave, especially in hot weather, so a promise of a ride is enough to detain him.

Am I mad?

No… just means that I got myself a nice quiet night home alone so I can do things that I don’t do when he’s here… like blog.

Well, he is on his way… he still plans to fire up the BBQ even though it is 10 frickin 30… he will be out there grilling way past midnight. Oh well. All I do is roll with what comes.

Ye Done

I think I am done with therapy.  The big debate question now is:  should I go to my next appointment and tell this psychologist that I’m not coming back OR simply call to cancel the appointment?

The real question is:  do I care what this intellectual type, with whom I have had serious communication problems, writes on my permanent electronic file? 

If I call to cancel, he will assume that I quit my recovery, that I am too defiant to accept help, there’s no hope for me, and all sorts of nonsense. Good psychologist, bad client.  Fact being as they are, therapy right now is a waste of time and money. 

I signed up for five sessions of cognitive behavior therapy last fall, first appointment on Halloween.  He told me on day one to look it up so I would know what to expect.  I think HE needs to look it up, as this is “talk therapy” without any clear purpose or direction. 

Okay, so my last visit was on the same day that my daughter opened a keg of worms.  I walked in baffled and confused, so I wasted my visit talking about it.  Walked out just as baffled and confused.  Then I spent a couple weeks mulling it over in my head and on virtual paper, writing endlessly only to delete. 

There was a lot of other stuff going on, July was a busy month.  I had art on display in three places, events to attend, things that had to get done, a shoulder that bailed out for a couple weeks requiring doc visits and X-rays to see if an injury had caused losing ye 70% use of that arm (it is fine now, so it was either an unknown muscle sprain or wacko nerve games, who knows? Ten days of pain and loss of use, wha la all better?  I keep telling these docs that there has got to be something else going on, the jab points and odd things that come and go.  Oh, it could be arthritis?  It is above the bad discs in my spine, which gets blamed for everything south.)  Anyway… July was a busy month for me.  By other people’s standards, maybe not… but my life goes in slo-mo because of the spinal crap.  July ended with going out of town for a wedding, doing the old auntie thing by baking a zillion cookies, then coming home to leftover cookie ingredients and nearby convienience store, a momentary lapse on the “not an option” as that is the problem, so when I went back to the doc for follow-up on the arm thing, my weight was up.  Down 75 on the day I went to the shrink, up 9 at docs on Monday, and today down 11 by my scales.  So, yeah, I screwed up but its okay.  Life goes on.

The only way to kick this binge eating disorder is to  convince myself, and maintain that conviction, that bingeing is simply NOT an option.  But it is… it always is, and that is the problem.  Like any drug or addiction, it is there.  It is my choice to make it an option.  It is me who has to say to myself: not an option, don’t do it.

Therapy did NOT help me… yes, I talked to him about what went down with my child.  I talked to everyone else, too.  Sisters, friends, my dad… so baffled and confussed to discover that my adult child was embarrassed of me.  Yes, the wild child who loved drama so much that she had huge comedy and tragedy masks tattooed on her arm has morphed into my mother, an all prim and proper lady caring about how things look as she nears the age of 30.  She was embarrassed of me.

I’m not going to get into the details of my “behaving badly in public” as that would only serve to embarrass her more. 

What baffles me is how easily she was embarrassed over something that did NOT embarrass me at all and then how mad she was, expressed later via text and phone calls over several days, and her coldness towards me on my birthday.  Oh, she sent a “happy bday” text wee early in the morning and she did say “happy birthday” when I called her late that night asking where’s my cake, I don’t get a card or nothing?  Oh yes, she was and maybe still is, really mad at me.

Maybe I should move, go live someplace else. 

Odds are that I will, repeatedly and unintentionally,  accidentally embarrass her again just by being my own damn self.  

OH WELL…  I am her mother and parents come “as is” so she best accept me “as is” and go on.   I am NOT going to play pretend by slipping on a public persona every time I step out the door, taking precious care to guard everything I do or say or simply BE or AM in a misguided attempt to avoid embarrassing my adult child.

I ain’t got it in me to do it again. 

Again?  Oh yeah…  that’s in my keg of worms, the why I can’t do it, not even for my own child. 

I’m not ready to write about it yet, partly because I became intensely aware that not all people who read things on the internet are, in a word, SANE.  Stir in anything about religion and the nutcases go off in an uproar. 

Besides, I have rambled on long enough today.