Sunday, August 23, 2015

Appreciating Our Parents

Note: There is a film short from the 50s shown on MST3K that we have often watched at our house that makes us all laugh. But this is the real thing...

There's a woman I know on a listserv and on Facebook who regularly visits her elderly parents, who live about 300-400 miles from her. Whenever she goes she whines about their fusspot, quirky behavior.

I like her. She's a nice person. So I won't post this there:

Dear Karen:

Stop whining about your parents, be it about the sign s on the stove reminding you (or them) to check that the burners are off, their fussy ways of using bread, or any of the other small, irritating ways they have.

Instead, get on your frickin' knees and thank whatever it is that you believe in that they are still there to irritate you.

I would give anything to watch my mom take 2 hours to make breakfast. To hear my father kvetching about some minor annoyance. To have them call me at the worst possible moment of the week.

To hear their voices, see their faces and to hug them both.

One day they won't be there, and you will be able to live your life without all this aggravation, and instead of enjoying it you will be missing them every single day. You will miss the phone calls, the visits and every quirky nuance that makes your parents who they are.

And one day you will be their age, and your sons will have to put up with whatever weirdness you create in their lives. I hope that they can deal with it with humor and with love.

God, I miss my parents.

The Library Lady

Friday, August 14, 2015

Screaming Here

Normally, I would rant about this on Facebook. But the person involved is a long time co-worker and friend.

Dear Circulation Manager,
I love you, you know that.  But I had REASONS, GOOD REASONS for not wanting the rest of the picture book section books removed until tomorrow:

1)My assistant was here and we would have done it.

2)Half the section is closed already because the painters moved the shelves. Now we have tons of empty metal shelving, and the nannies will try to hang out here anyway today.

3)I  don't know if you've put the books out of nanny/parent/child reach. I haven't looked, being too busy with cleaning out the mess upstairs in my storage. But if you didn't, they will be everywhere, just as they are because you had the guys move the YAs over to the series area, and allowed them to mash up all the series stuff in no discernible order, which is driving me nuts in itself.

4)This and above all this:

It's my section.
It was MY call.

I really didn't need this on top of everything else. I have had 8 weeks of summer reading hell, working my ass off. I have 15 years of stuff to sort upstairs, and I've been trying to do it while all the regular stuff continued.

I had planned out how to do my work. It's my department. I knew what I was doing. It's not your call.
You should have respected that. But as always, ignored this and did what you wanted to do, certain that your way was the right way. And that's probably what ticks me most of all.

I know you've been here for decades. But it's NOT your library. If you'd gotten that you might have gotten a reference job upstairs. Instead you're downstairs, bitter and burned out and needing badly to retire.

I hated writing this. But I'm pissed at you and it's all I can do.
And I am so, so tired.

Yours truly,

The Very, Very Tired Library Lady

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Dear Nanay

It was 7 years ago last week. I lit a Jewish yahrzeit candle, and Sarah went to Blessed Sacrament and lit a candle there. Fitting, I guess.

Nay, I miss you for me because I love you, and for SC because she was so close to you and for JR because she never really got to know you. But above all I miss you for the Man.

He is in such bad shape, Nay. He is angry all the time. He is tired too much. He eats too much.
He's not biking. He's not working on household things unless he has too, or he's doing small projects that aren't what really need doing.

He won't talk to me. When I try, he goes silent. He's sweet and loving to JR nearly all the time, and mostly with SC he's good, but I feel him not wanting me there sometimes and I want to die inside.

He's worrying about his brothers. Yes, C and D made bad life choices. Yes, neither is doing as well as we'd like. But I see D--and R--on Facebook, living their lives, going out and doing things, and not nearly as unhappy as the Man is, with all of us to love him. That hurts too.

This morning I told him he needs to see his doctor so they can check his blood pressure and that he needs to get screened for depression. This after last night leaving JR's LAST choir concert, one that she wanted us both at, and walking home because he had a headache, and had been hostile to me in the car, and then sat there with his eyes closed while we were waiting for things to start.

The girls know he's not right. It hurts them too. And I hope they don't know that I worry he could even have suicidal tendencies. I don't think he would--but when I can't reach him by phone and he's been upset, I get terrified.

I want to drag him to Behavorial Health. I want to go into the room and tell the doctor everything he won't probably won't tell them. I want him on medication, if it will bring back the Man that I love so much, that I have never, ever stopped loving.

I want you back, Nay. But he's here, and yet he's not here, and I want him back.

Ironical that I think I will have to start channeling my mom to take care of your son. And yet, that's what I think I need to do.

Love you. Miss you and Tay and my mom and dad. Hope there's somewhere after this, and you've all had a chance to go out to dinner together and admire your granddaughters.

Love always,

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

The Beginning of a Good May (I Hope!)

1)The stool test took 2 flipping weeks, but came up negative. I then emailed my doctor and have had a back and forth explaining why I am so medical test averse. He backed down from making me do all the other tests at once--I can start with the routine thyroid--but he also suggested I go see the Behavioral Health folks.  And as I told them when they contacted me--I'm not into doing that right now. Grief is hard, but most days I can cope. It's those damned medical things that make me nuts.

2)I channeled my mom again, and told the agency to get me a tutor or give me a refund. They found one and JR is starting with her tonight. I think she can pass this dang test with some help.

3) I came out of the library at lunch time to move my car (we have no parking) and found a lady standing by my car. She had managed somehow to sideswipe me and dented my bumper. Luckily it was the rear back of my car which had damage already. Her insurance will pay for this and hopefully take care of the previous damage at the same time. So if it had to happen, it's not so awful.

4)Most of the houses I have yearned for have sold, but our credit is solid again, once I get a few papers in order I should get money from Mom's pension and from one last IRA of Dad's. I am hoping that next month we can settle all this and then I will know where we stand financially. Meanwhile I found a carpenter to do something about the closets in JR's room that have been a problem for a while, and am going to talk to our contractor about finishing the bathroom this summer so that the side we didn't tile looks as beautiful as the side we did!

5)I am going to a 2 day baby/toddler yoga training at the end of the month. I've been wanting to do this and they are actually having it on week days on a week that we weren't doing programs anyway!


6) We are going to Chincoteague for the weekend and the weather looks good and now that SC doesn't have a gall bladder I am hoping we can have a happy, healthy weekend.

Nice to talk about mostly good things for a change!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

The Library Lady Mom

Actually, it does.
I was a good children's librarian when I first started doing this, because I was in my early 20s, and in truth I've never outgrown my childishness.

But I became a much, much better children's librarian because I have the perspective of a parent.

I know what it's like to have a baby who won't sleep through the night. I know what it's like to go through toilet training. I know that the "terrible 2s" are more likely around 18 months, and that they are nothing compared to dealing with a 14 year old!

I know what it's like to have an early walker--and a late one. To have a kid whose first word was "book" and another who didn't really become passionate about the printed word till much, much later.

So I can look at a mom/dad/caregiver and say "I know about this because when SC was 18 months/when JR was little," and they know that I GET IT.

I can give them a suggestion, say "we all go through this," let them know that what is going on is okay.

It's a huge advantage in this business. And it's why dealing with the other "youth service managers", all childless, frequently frustrates me.

It also has a disadvantage. Knowing what I know about child rearing, watching bad nanny/parent behavior angers me. I have very little tolerance for the sort of crap I see on a daily basis!

Thursday, April 16, 2015


1)JR needs a tutor for chemistry so she at least passes the damned SOL, and I have paid for one, but the tutor didn't get in touch with me, and is now saying she can't start till the 23. Another tutor will be found by the agency, but we've lost time already!

2)Having ballet class at the recreation center means open enrollment and another blasted ringer has shown up. Clearly had professional training, perhaps experience, and belongs in our class like a fish does on a bike. Plus a second girl, who also seems to have had some training, and put on a flippy little ballet skirt for the floor section of the program. Gag!

3)The Man got pissed at me because I had the nerve to suggest we get rid of some Time Life cookbooks that we haven't used for years. Some were Nanay's, but I'm not sure SHE used them, and I could use the space for other books of hers. He sulked through Monday, stressed JR out  that night, and I got called in the middle of a program Tuesday because she was in the nurse's office with a panic attack. Had to go home, and ended up missing 1/2 day's work, which meant I am behind on even more things at work.  And the Man got off scot free, because she wouldn't tell him she was upset. I get dumped on by her. He gets her kissy-kissy Audrey Hepburn routine.

4)Shut off some of the notices from Redfin, and am telling myself NOT to look at houses. Because there's one I want, that has everything we want, is a reasonable distance from JR's school, has a kitchen I'd love to remodel, and doubtless it will sell within days. As I wait for my brother and his asshat lawyer to settle the estate.

5)I weeded some of my library garden, and whatever plant in there I'm allergic too is giving me hives again. The only good thing is that they seem mild, and Benadryl at night also seems to be helping me sleep well for a chance.

6) Last, but not least. I mustered my wits, plucked up my courage, and sent in a colon screening kit, and am waiting for results. I know they should be fine, but I haven't done it in 2 years and 2 of my great-aunts died of this, long ago. And there are still a mammogram and blood tests to be done if this is okay.......

In short, this has been a short work week, but an annoying one, and I would like to stay home tomorrow and do nothing.

But instead, I'll run errands all day.

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Still Looking

Someone bought my house--though since the sales seem to keep falling through, we'll see if it takes this time.

I'm not as upset as I could be, because I drove to see it and discovered it was in a neighborhood inaccessible by bus.  JR has just started stepping out on her own by bus--and it was a good 1/2 mile to the nearest main street with a bus line. She'd have needed to take the school bus, and if she didn't make it, it would have taken her 2 buses and a walk to get home.  And that walk would have been along a large wooded park. Not where I want my very slight, pretty nearly 16 year old walking on her own.

It would have been too far from the stores we need.  Too far from the highways, which would have made it hard for the Man and SC to commute to work and school. A longer commute for me, for that matter. Far from the bike paths the Man likes to use on weekends.

The thing is, that we live in a popular area for home. Though there are THOUSANDS of houses in the nearby area for sale, in our small city, within school range, within our price budget, there never seem to be more than 10 to 20 for sale, and most of them are not what we need. Or want.

Either our house isn't really out there, someone has bought it already (and several I would have wanted have gone that way) or it still hasn't arrived. But then, neither have all of our needed funds.
Thanks to my brother's asshat lawyer, the process of getting my parents' estate settled has dragged.

It may not be meant to be. I may have to endure the Queen of Vulgaria and the Pug Lady and the clutter of the Man's things spread across this house for some time to come.

But I don't want to say goodbye to this house without the girls still here. After doing so for my parents, and the Man's, I want us to all move out together from this house with all its memories, and move into another home that will not seem totally foreign to the girls when they have gone from home.

And I can't help feeling that after all the sad times over the last few years, having a new home with the space we need, with the tranquility I crave, would really make a difference in my life. It wouldn't bring back what we've lost, but it would be something good coming from all that has been bad.

So I'm still looking. Still hoping.