Sunday, March 17, 2013

Fish in a Barrel

I think my insurance company is trying to harass me into leaving or trick me into letting them kick me out. After returning all the forms which came with my “random” selection to have my coverage re-verified. I am on a treadmill getting a new fat envelope each week asking for more and more useless information. It’s not just a matter of figuring out and completing the forms, they all need something that requires time and effort -- my doctor’s signature, notarization, some time consuming task that makes me want to rip the paper to bits, but then they win.

I was mid-way through the form that asked me questions such as “do you smoke or use tobacco products?” “NO” “If you begin smoking do you agree to immediately join a smoking cessation program? WTF? If you hit yourself over the head with a cast iron frying pan, do you promise not to do that again? {o.k., I made that one up} How much do you weigh? If you gain more than 10 pounds... All needing my physicians signature. While still working on this form, the next fat envelope arrives, five more pages of Renewal Certification Forms all with ridiculously short deadlines. Paperwork is my nemesis, I hate it, I loose it, I rarely understand it because I read questions too literally. I can hear trees dying in vain to make the paper for these copious forms and instead of paying for my blood transfusions, they’re paying for paper and ink and postage and some person to send, read and file this nonsense. Not that I begrudge anyone their employment, but surely they could be put to better use.

I understand I’m an expensive subscriber, but that’s what makes the system work, right? I’m incredibly grateful to you healthy people who’s premiums are subsidizing my care, but it they kick me out, you’re not getting a refund and they’re already making a hefty profit, so I’d really like to just pay my premiums on time and in peace like everyone else.

Now that my tenant has moved out and baseball season has started for the tall one, I’m sans childcare for little dude while I go to work on Saturday’s. When I’ve brought him to the studio in the past, he loves it there... for five minutes, and then comes the chorus of “I’m hungry, I’m thirsty, when are we leaving?” Time and people march forward and yesterday, I had a Fez wearing assistant who had “one of the best day’s ever” and was a really big help, for real. He taped a sign to his fez that said “this fez is not for sale, but it IS really cool!” He sat in the chair of power, the tall director’s chair at the counter and rang up sales all by himself. He seems to be a good merchandiser too, he was constantly straightening up the sock monkeys so they were maximum cute and making sure everything had signs and were priced. It was sweet and lovely and he can’t wait to come back, which he will, like it or not, every other saturday, but like is so much better than the alternative.

The tall one has been between sports and has not gone back to his usual posse because it seems they spend their weekends driving in circles, looking for something to do {never finding it} and smoking pot and drinking, sound familiar? That's how I spent my high school years, but I was too dumb to realize how boring and stupid it was. My son is smarter than I was, he thinks it’s idiotic, and since he’s between teams, sans girlfriend and straight edge, he’s hanging out with the senior girls. What’s so wonderful about his school is that everyone mixes, it’s not just the theater kids, or the jocks, or the brainiacs... it’s one big group. The artsy kids and the valedictorian all hang out together.

We all know about the circle of life, but what I love are all the circles within life and all of the symmetry. When we moved to our road, our beloved street 15 years ago, G was two years old and two houses down was a family with a like-aged daughter. The mom and I clicked immediately and we spent night and day together with the kids, our maniacal toddlers. Our kids were as different as can be, but we have become family in every sense of the word. The girl is a couple of months older, so she’s a year up in school but as our families are family, they’ve always been in contact, and now we live directly across the street, so they can't really avoid each other if they wanted to. He’s all sports and she’s all theater but they are like siblings in that way when you’ve known someone your whole life. In middle school they drifted apart as always seems to happen when kids become either boys or a girls, but the past few years, while they don’t hang out, they’ve become the best of friends on the sly, texting, confiding, getting girl/boy advice from one another and walking home from the bus together. Now, all of a sudden, he’s become besties with her whole gang because girls are more fun... they play board games and watch movies, and talk and laugh their heads off. He’s even rediscovered the girl next door, "you know X is really cool" duh, it took him 10 years to figure that out despite knowing her since they were 3. So just as they'll start leaving for college, their relationships have come full circle and it's a beautiful thing.

When I have a room full of boys, which doesn't happen much any more, there has to be sports on T.V. and they sit there texting other people instead of talking to each other. Last night I had 3 boys and 15 girls over and while discreetly hiding in the kitchen, I heard such different sounds than I’m used to. Girls laugh, a lot. They are hilarious, I wish I could morph back in time and hang out with these girls, some of them knit, I never learned to knit and I think you've got to learn that shit young. And as far as my son is concerned, while I don’t think he’s looking for a girlfriend, if he wanted one, it’d be like shooting fish in a barrel, that is one lucky guy.

My ex has a girlfriend. I’ve suspected this for some time, well, since he moved out really, because you never saw a wedding ring fly off a finger faster and moving out was really the only thing I’ve ever seen him stay on task with. I was going to leave mine on out of respect until he moved out, or we were officially divorced, but his was off within 24-hours of us deciding to split. Then there’s his steadfast refusal since day one to ever have the kids on a Friday night, which really is so unfair. It surprised me though since I really believed in my heart, now I realize, rationalized in my heart, that he just didn’t want to be in a relationship, didn't need it, didn't crave it, wasn't capable of it. He showed no interest in me, or my life or meeting my friends, refused to introduce me to anyone at his job, even though he’s been there forever. I never even saw his office, I used to ask to, and offered to host dinner parties so I could meet his friends from work, but he wasn’t interested and I eventually gave up. I used to ask if people ever socialized, went for dinner, had parties, because I’d love to meet them. He wasn’t interested in sitting at the same table for dinner or going out or being a “we” in any sense. I thought it was him and now I realize it was me. He just didn’t want to share with me... didn’t want to be companions with me... didn’t want to show affection or interest in me, didn't want to work on the relationship with me. If I was watching a movie or show on t.v. I'd invite him to join me, he always said "no thanks." If I sat on the couch next to him, he'd leave pretty quickly, to get something from the kitchen or use the bathroom and when he returned, he'd sit at the other end of the couch. Death by a thousand cuts. And how lucky is he? Gets out just in time to start dating with a clear conscience. A mere few months later and he'd be stuck picking up the slack for a wife with cancer.

He’s a tall, white male in upper management at a large corporation, he’s involved with someone from work... shooting fish in a barrel. I knew this would probably be the case, I know it was the case many years ago, and have always suspected it has at times been the case since, but didn’t want to be the controlling shrew he seemed conditioned to view women, or “wives” as, and I respected his autonomy so didn’t ask questions. Even the kids started to point out his absences. “Mom, it doesn’t take 3 hours to go get coffee.” But I figured, nah, he's not interested in relationships, if he was, he could have one with me. And still we're as friendly as can be, discussing the kids, while I enable his life and work like a dog, to keep my family in good shape. I've not asked questions and while his answers always sound so truthful, I know they're not, I've only caught him in out and out lies a few times, and I wasn't even looking, so you figure, for each time an unpleasant truth landed in my lap... there must have been so many swimming under the surface. And he always, always seems like the most honest guy in the world. I guess I just wonder why life seems so easy for some people and so difficult for others. I don't know how to make my life work, I try so hard, It's such a specific goal, but I don't know how, I just don't know how to make it all work, how to make the pieces fall into place.

I can’t find my barrel anywhere, I don’t think there is one, or maybe I don't have the energy or tenacity to find it, and I don’t quite think I have the same power rifle these two do. Nor do I really have time for a relationship, I have my kids all the time, sans Wed. night and every other weekend, weekends being Saturday to Monday morning {and I begrudge not a split-second I’m with them}. I’m self-employed which is non-stop, especially when you’re coming off a hiatus, even more so, when so much time has to be spent in doctor’s offices and I’m depleted from treatment and while they can try to “cure” you of cancer, they don’t tell you that you’ll never be the same.

My life is beautiful, my life is grand, but it’s hard being single in this complicated world, more so when you’ve lived with someone for so long, even if they didn’t talk to you. My longing for that soft shoulder to lean on and that person to laugh with makes my heart hurt and it’s not like I lost that when the marriage ended, I’ve been longing for it for years {and years}. I got no fish in my barrel, that should be a country song. I guess no one gets everything in life and really, right now, the goal is simply to have a life. I have so much, maybe wanting more is just greedy and tempting fate.

1 comment:

  1. Kim, you are an amazing and vibrant woman. I always enjoy reading your posts, even the sad and scary ones. You're beautiful, kind and caring. You're an awesome Mom and I'm sure you were a great wife, even if he is a D-bag. There is a wonderful fish out there for you. :)