Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Working too Hard?

Do you ever feel like your working too hard at a friendship? You don't hear from someone in a while, you call or try to touch base and things... well, they just keep slipping apart. I have to say that I feel that way about a few of my friendships right now and it's sad really.
MaIybe I'm a bad friend. Maybe life just gets complicated. To be honest, there are few people that I expend the emotional labor on to become friends in the first place. Now, to most of you that probably sounds really harsh, but those of you in the Navy will probably understand. The fact is, I'm in one place for 2-3 years usually. Just when I have a beautiful friendship going, it's time to go again. Sure I have many close friends in various places that I do maintain friendships with, but it's a challenge. After a while, you have to ask yourself, how hard do I want to work to make this friendship happen? Will it survive the next move I know is coming? Are we just in different places in our lives? I'm not really sure myself about the answers to these questions. Maybe there is just something about me.
Since I've started back to school, I have been happier than I have been in a long time. I love school, but sometimes it feels isolating. I'm so busy working on homework that I don't have a lot of time for making an extra effort to maintain relationships that are important to me.
What do you think readers? How do you maintain your friendships/ relationships? Especially for those of you that are military, do you ever feel this way?

Sunday, July 11, 2010

It's Karma Baby.

Yesterday my MIL departed and all the overly dramatic incidents in my life came to a screeching halt. Funny how that happens.
Here is a brief recap:
I already told you about her teeth. That cost us over $1000. - so far. The bottom teeth haven't been replaced yet, and if you have been to a dentist lately, you have some idea of how expensive that is. Enough said. Shit happens, and this is just something that we will have to take care of. Moving on.
I spent several nights while she was here out with girlfriends. This was done not only because I enjoy my time with my friends, but also to preserve my sanity. I had to spend some time away from the endless, nonsensical blathering. One day was particularly bad. I was half out of my mind when I left my house, but felt so much better after dinner at Chile's with my very good friend, Amy. We are both working on our masters degree right now, and I love hearing about her classes and the things she is learning. Plus, she is a great listener and always has a positive way of looking at everything. It helps give perspective. When I got home, I was feeling human again. Until I heard the screaming as I pulled into my garage.
My husband and his mother were in our spare bedroom screaming at one another at the top of their lungs while my baby ( she's 6 so not really a baby...) was terrified in her bedroom. I went upstairs and found my usually very rational man so pissed off that he was actually shaking. I had never seen that before. They were arguing about his mother's continuous inability to manage her medication. (She over medicated her antibiotics and was out four days earlier than she was supposed to be, as a result, my husband had to keep her medication and dole it out daily... pathetic and frustrating for him really.) After all of that and her continued assurances that she had all the medication that she needed, we collectively made no less than five additional trips to the pharmacy for her various medications. It just pushed him over the edge.
He had some problems with his vision and horrible headaches as a result of all the stress. They actually did a sonogram of his neck and heart to make sure that he didn't have a heart problem. He may be diagnosed with migraines, which is likely submarine disqualifying, because of all the stress his mother put him through in the 18 days she was here. If so, this will have a huge and lasting financial impact on my family. Thank you MIL.
Fast forward to Friday. I went to the lake on our base to see a dear friend and her children that my girls and I haven't seen in over a year. I have missed her terribly and have been looking forward to her visit for months now. One potential spoiler? Had to stop at the pharmacy for more pills on the way and of course, MIL had to go with me. Ugh. She never shuts up. I hardly got to visit with my friend without her incessent droning. There was some verbal flap over a bikini that my SIL had purchased for my oldest daughter. Sporty as I call her wanted nothing to do with a bikini and told my MIL that her daughter " doesn't know me at all." Needless to say that opened a WHOLE can of unnecessary drama complete with crocodile tears and more nonsensical diatribes.
When I got home, MIL then started drama with me by saying that my SIL "never meant to say anything bad about my children." How the hell would you hear/ interpret that statement? Probably that someone was saying something less than nice about your children right? Well, I correctly figured that my MIL was talking her usual bullshit and a whole can of bs was opened over that.
To make a long story short ( and I realize that this isn't really short - sorry. Thanks for bearing with me if you are still reading...) I told MIL that she is worthless, at risk of losing both her son and her granddaughter, she doesn't know what the hell she is talking about more than 90% of the time and if she starts any more drama between my SIL and I, she will not be welcome until it gets resolved.
The positives of this little jaunt? At least my husband realizes that no, his mother can NEVER live with us. The woman is nothing but a whirling bag of drama who leaves devastation in her wake everywhere she goes. My children aren't going to be among her victims. Nor are we going to enable her continued non acceptance for responsibility in her own life. After all, she has problems with my BIL, my husband, myself, doctors, neighbors... It can't always be the fault of the other person when the only commonality in all the insanity is her.
The last bit... the karma. Well, she got on the airplane yesterday to go to CO to visit her precious daughter and the center of the universe, my nephew. She missed her connection and had to be driven to another airport some hours away. At some point, what comes around, goes around. I hope that she has a much better visit in CO than she has had her in CT.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Damage Control

We are finally on the downward spiral of the crazy train that is my MIL's visit. Unbelievably, it has been better this time than in the past. Her medication is still a problem. My husband has to keep her antibiotic and dole them out as a daily dose because she was downing them like chicklets. Still, Saturday is our return to our normal lives date. I'm looking forward to it.
Her visit has taken the largest tool on him, mainly because I am simply refusing to do all the things that I used to - like get her medicine and deal with her mini-emergencies. I am sad that it is so stressful for him but glad that he is beginning to see what she is really like when she is here.
It's funny how if there are weaknesses in your relationship, the smallest events can cause fissures to appear. Most of the time I feel like my marriage is very solid, but my MIL and my husband's whole family, really know how to find those pressure points.
On a positive note, my husband and I are planning a get away around his birthday and I am really looking forward to it. I found a beautiful hotel, right on the beach in MA. We hope to go whale watching and do lots of other fun things. I think it is really important for couples to take time to reconnect, just with one another. We will take another family vacation in the winter. I'm hoping to take the girls to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. :) Should be fun. In the meantime though, I am looking forward to the one on one with my husband, to repair the fissures and just be ourselves. Leave his cell phone at home and use mine only for our children. Get away... just us. Heaven. I can already here the sound of the surf on the beach and feel the salty air on my face.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Today is the day

Today is the day that my MIL goes to get her teeth worked on. I'm hoping that the dentist gives her enough vicodin to put her out for the next 9 days. Is that wrong of me? One would think that a sore mouth would slow down her ceaseless, nonsensical chatter, but so far, the sore mouth has had zero effect on her ability to drone on endlessly. Here's hoping that actually pulling the teeth will change that.

On a better note, today is also the first day of subfest. That is a huge midway and fair that our Navy base puts on every fourth of July weekend. We didn't get to go last year because we were at home in Pennsylvania taking care of my dad. No way we were missing it this year. Sadly, thanks to my MIL, my husband probably will miss it. I''m sure he will have to babysit her as she whines and moans all night, after all, it's all about her getting his attention. It's sick really.

So here I sit, anxiously awaiting the return of my normal life. I hate enablers and excuse makers, sadly my MIL is both. I'm just trying to drown out the incessant noise until she is ready to head on out to Colorado. You know, Colorado is a beautiful state. My sister and two of my nephews live there; however, due to the proximity of other family members and the lack of trees, I would never want to live there. My husbands family is best handled in small doses and from many states away. I always feel guilty for saying that though, like because he is with me, he is somehow giving up on something else. That said, he doesn't have a particularly close relationship with either his mother or his sister and I'm not sure that would change if I suddenly weren't in the picture.