Monday, December 31, 2012

What's 2013 got in store for me?

I remember sitting at home exactly a year ago trying to come up with some New Year's resolutions. I can't remember what all I said I would attempt to accomplish, but knowing me, it probably wasn't all that much. I'm too lazy to make huge goals for myself. =P

As I sit here tonight though, I can't help but reflect on this past year. It's been a rough one for my family and for so many of the people that I know and love. All for various reasons, but affecting each of us in our own ways.

I won't recap the entire year. If you read this blog, then you are well aware of some of the issues that have plagued my family over the last 12 months.

I've seen a lot of growth in the face of adversity this year though too.

First and foremost is my son. At 15, he has stood up to peer pressure in a way a lot of kids his age wouldn't have been able to do. He was brutally assaulted because of it and yet, he still stands strong. He hasn't changed who he is. He hasn't changed his beliefs, his morals, his compassion for others. He has shown me just how much he trusts his father and I. He opened up and told us his darkest secrets, trusting us to be there for him and to nurture him. He reached out to us and allowed us to guide him until he was strong enough to stand on his own a little more again. He's still hurting, but he is such a strong young man and I couldn't possibly be prouder of him. As a mother, I know that even though he has been hurting, he will conquer the hurt and the pain. He will fall when he needs to, and he will brush himself off and stand up tall and proud again. I have so much respect for him. He is a wonderful man child and I love just watching him grow.

I've formed and lost a lot of friendships this year. It's been rough. Really rough. Yet, through it all, my true friends have shown themselves in ways that I never imagined. There were people in my life who kicked me when I was down. While battling depression, they treated me horribly. It hurt. A lot. However, these other incredible, often overlooked, people came forward and really pulled me through the worst of my depression. I have some of the most incredible people in my life and I am so grateful for them. I'm pickier about my friendships now. Who I let in and who I don't. I have found my voice and no longer hesitate to tell others how I truly feel. Because of these friends who have been there, I am stronger. I no longer settle for good enough. I know who my true friends are, and they are the sort of friends that will stick around well into old age. No one keeps score, no one owes the other anything. We are just there for each other. I can't think of a better kind of friend to have. They are the kind that becomes family.

My husband and I are closer than ever. With everything that we've dealt with, we could have chosen to take it all out on each other. I'm not going to lie and try to pretend that we never have. There have been times in the past year where we've gotten pretty crabby with each other over something that neither of us could control. However, we've learned to really open up and communicate with each other. We talk about everything now. And as much as I hate to admit it, I've even started listening to some of his advice. He's a very smart man, and it would do me good to listen when he speaks on occasion. I'm learning. We hold each other accountable now. We have opened up and we talk so much easier than we ever have before. We've learned lessons and grown closer through the adversity that has happened in our lives. He is truly my very best friend in the world and I love him more and more every single day.

Emotionally, mentally, physically... Our family has grown. We've always been close, but now, it's different. It's stronger. There is a bond there that doesn't come from blood, DNA or vows. It comes from truly loving each other and putting in an effort each and every day to be there for each other. We are our own force against the world when we need to be. Together, we are unstoppable.

I don't know what 2013 has in store for me and my family. What I do know is that no matter what it brings, we will make it though. We will still laugh, and hold each other. We'll still surprise each other with little gifts just because. I'll learn new recipes because my husband or kids mention something that they like. We'll likely pick up and move at some point this year. We'll say goodbyes and hellos. We'll grow and change and adapt. But most of all, we'll love. Because that's what we do here. We love each other and we do so much more than just get through the bad times. We survive those and give our all to living a life that we can all share and enjoy together.

So bring it on 2013! This family is ready for you! 

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Sick of the judgements

I was reading a blog post on Sunday written by a mother who can identify with Adam Lanza's mother and some of her struggles. You can see her post here. Reading ONLY that post, I identified with the mother just a little bit.

I do feel that there is a stigma attached to anyone with a mental health issue. Our own family is struggling with the lack of mental health care that is out there. After my son was brutally assaulted, he became suicidal. It's been a living nightmare for us all. The lack of help for a 15 year old boy with suicidal ideation is concerning.

When he first told me that he was having suicidal thoughts, I rushed him to the emergency room. We were then given a referral to mental health. I called the very next day to make an appointment, but they couldn't see him for 3 weeks. They gave me no guidance as to how to get him through those 3 weeks alive. There was NOTHING at all. No support, no help, nothing. Just an appointment 3 weeks into the future. I wasn't even sure that my son would be alive in 3 weeks.

I had to fight tooth and nail and raise all kinds of hell to get him seen before that. I needed to know how to keep my child alive, how to get him through until his appointment. It took a lot of yelling, screaming, crying, and guilt trips before they agreed to see him sooner than that.

It's not easy accessing mental health care. Sure, it's out there. But it is not always readily accessible. The professionals that you see aren't always all that great either. My son has been diagnosed with severe PTSD. The doctors suggestion? Lock him away in a residential treatment facility. I grew up in one of them. It's nothing but a glorified orphanage. I'm not sending my son away during the time that he needs the most support. They don't monitor the kids well enough there. They medicate them instead of properly teaching them coping mechanisms. The therapy is a joke. It's so easy to just tell them what they want to hear so that you can get out and go home. My son needs real care. Not to be shipped off somewhere where he knows no one at all and feels like his own family doesn't even want him.

I know how difficult it is to acknowledge that your child has any sort of mental health issue. I also know that people treat both you and your child differently once they find out there is something going on there.

It's not the same as a physical disability. A physical one would almost be easier to handle I think. People can see the limitations. People can see exactly what is wrong. With mental health, they always assume the worst. Not just of your child, but of you too. I've been accused of being a shitty parent over this. Since my son is suicidal, it MUST be because I didn't love him enough. BULLSHIT.

This woman made a very hard comparison. I'm sure it wasn't easy for her to admit that her own child could very well turn out the way that Adam Lanza did. I don't think that about my son at all, but I know how difficult it must have been for her to acknowledge her fear to the world.

Instead, she was attacked. This woman here took parts of the original blog and tore it apart, bit by bit. I don't even have to read all of the original content to know that the second woman attacked, fiercely. It's hard as hell to admit that you child could potentially be a threat to society. It's got to be even harder to have someone tear you apart, sentence by sentence.

I personally believe that the OP was simply trying to point out the difficulties of having a mentally ill child in this world. I think it took a lot of guts for her to admit what she did. She was begging for a change in mental health care and she was essentially ripped a new asshole.

We do need changes in mental health care. If our solution to a child with suicidal ideation is to lock them away, then yes, there need to be changes. If a mother can reach out and beg for help and not get it, then yes, there need to be changes.

And when a concerned, overwhelmed, scared mother makes a very very difficult comparison and is attacked for it, then yes, there need to be changes.

Our society sucks. We're so busy pointing fingers and accusing others of doing wrong, we don't bother to see when they do right. Or when they are asking, no begging, for help.

I'm not going to read either of their other posts. I don't need to see more than I already have. As a mother, I am scared shitless to even post this. Because I'm afraid of being judged. I'm afraid of being told that I'm a horrible mother because my son struggles to get past the assault.

I shouldn't be scared. I should be able to raise awareness, to discuss my families struggles. Just as the OP should have been able to do in her own post. Without the backlash that she received.

We need changes. And anyone who is brave enough to speak up about it should not be attacked. We need changes in mental health care, we need changes in gun control. We need a whole lot of changes in our world that aren't happening. But mostly, we need to change the way we react to people when they reach out and admit the darkest moments of their lives. 

2012 All wrapped up and ready to end

My wonderful friend, Wendy, made a blog post today here that really got me thinking about this past year. She's one of the most incredible women I know and it got me really pondering how things have really been for me this last year. The good, the bad, and the ugliest of ugly.

This year has been a nightmare in so many ways.

In January, my husband's grandfather passed away. The kids and I were lucky enough to have finally met him the previous November. He was a wonderful man who cherished the time that he had with his family. He accepted me and my children openly and showered us with a love that has not been typical in my life.  My husband has wonderful stories from his childhood and some of his favorite memories revolved around time that he spent with his grandfather. Getting my husband through that time was extremely difficult. We lost a truly incredible man and we will always remember him fondly in our hearts.

My husband was gone quite a bit this year. Compared to many in the military, it wasn't all that much, but for us, it was a lot. He's never been away as much as he was this year and it was a very difficult adjustment for our family to make. For the first half of the year, when he was here, he was still working extremely long hours, so we weren't getting time with him even when he was around. He was also on mid shift for the longest time, which in all honesty, sucked. I handled it the best that I could, but it wasn't easy. I just kept telling myself that I would much rather have him on mids than someone who had little ones in the house. He's finally on a much better shift and I am forever grateful for that.

I've had a lot of issues with friendships this year. I've had people who I thought were wonderful people turn their backs on me when I needed them the most. I had someone do her best to completely ruin my other friendships. I had someone who claimed to be my best friend over here turn her back on me at the drop of a dime. There have been several people that I've fallen out with this year and it's been very very difficult to handle. I'm just glad that I have the friendships that I do now and that those people judge me based only on how I treat them, and not on what others have accused me of.

My son was assaulted. I've posted about that on here previously, so anyone who reads this is already well aware of that situation. We are still dealing with the aftermath of that assault and it sucks. Royally. My son is struggling so much right now because of it and it is affecting the entire family.

My husband's aunt has been ill. So have his cousin and her poor children. Both are incredible women with so much life in them. Knowing that they are sick or hurting is heart wrenching.

There was a lot of bad this year. More than I can put into one post. I've been depressed, my kids have been depressed, the whole nine yards. But there has been a lot of good too. And I need to make sure that I acknowledge that.

Losing Adam's grandfather 14 months after I lost my own grandmother has taught me to cherish family. Considering that I've never really had a family to cherish before, this was a big deal to me. I don't take anyone for granted anymore. I know that I could lose them with a moments notice, so I try my hardest to make sure they know that we love them. Having his aunt and his cousin struggling with their own illnesses has me a bit worried, but I try to make sure that I have more consistent contact with them. Both are wonderful women and I hope to have them in my life for many years to come.

My husband being gone so much showed me just how strong I really am. I know that I am perfectly capable of taking care of my family. I know without a doubt that I am married to him because I want to be, not because I need him. I've been codependent before and it scares the hell out of me. I never want to be that person again, and I know now that I won't be.

Him being gone so much has forced us to really learn how to openly communicate with each other. We talk more now than we ever have before. We've also learned how to fight differently. We are learning how to discuss issues together, rather than just start screaming at each other! We make more of our decisions together, we back each other up with the kids, and we are trying our best to always fight fair. It's not always easy, but we are definitely stronger than ever before. I've always had a good marriage, but now, it's even better. There are no subjects that we can't discuss. Hell, recently, we've even talked openly with each other about some of our previous relationships. That wasn't something either of us was fully comfortable with doing before. A lot of that was my fault, as I was a bit bat shit crazy jealous whenever he talked about his ex. I've come to realize that he chose me. He wanted me. I'm no longer jealous and it's nice to be able to talk openly with him now.

The difficulties that I've had with my friendships have only made my other friendships stronger. I have some truly wonderful people in my life and I am incredibly happy to have them around. I may not have nearly the amount of friends that I once thought I had, but I have the most wonderful friends in the world. I cherish each of them more than I ever did before. We support each other through the good and the bad. None of my friends now would ever tuck tail and run over stupid shit. They are a big part of my success in battling my depression.

I can't say much good about my son being assaulted, but I will try to find something positive in this experience. I know that my son will stand up and do the right thing. I know that he is not likely to give into peer pressure. I know that he is not afraid to face his fears. I know that he will be open and honest with me about his emotions, even if it's difficult for him to do. He showed me an inner strength that I did not know he possessed. He's an incredible young man and I will do my best to make sure that he heals from this horrible experience.

This year may have sucked, but I am going to end it looking at all the good that's come out of these trying times. My husband is truly my best friend. My kids and I are closer than ever. My friends are of the greatest quality now. I expect better from the people in my life and I am not settling for anything less.

It's not always easy being me. But damn it, I've got a great life. Things can only get better from here. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Finally! Some good things happening

The past few months have been hell. Of course, anyone that ever reads this is well aware of that. I'm pleased to announce a few good things.

First, I've taken control of my depression. It's not easy. However, I refuse to let depression win. I can't take meds cause they cause suicidal ideation when there otherwise isn't any. So my anti-depressant has been working out. It's been two weeks of consistent workouts, but I'm finally feeling better. Of course, that's mentally. Physically, I can barely move most days!

The other good thing is that we have FINALLY been able to apply to be reassigned back stateside. With everything that has happened with our son, we and his doctors truly feel that getting away from here will go a long way towards getting him better.

It's been a struggle over the past few months just getting all of the evaluations and then supporting documentation. But we finally have it all and we applied today!!

So now it's a 6-8 week wait to see if/when/where we are going. So by February 6th, 2013 we should have an answer. Then it's just a matter of out processing. There's no guarantee that we will get to leave, but the doctors and the advocates all think that we have a really good case.

So we're one step closer to ending this nightmare! I can't wait. I am SOOOO ready to be back in the States.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Airmen's stockings program, year 2

Wow! This year flew by! It's already that time again where I play Santa and provide our airmen with gifts and stockings. I started this program last year when I found out just how little the base did for our single airmen stationed overseas and living in the dorms.



Last year, I wasn't able to get pictures because their stockings and gifts were put into their rooms while they were at work. This year though, I delivered everything myself. It was a lot of fun and I was able to get pictures of their smiling faces!

I raised a little over $4000 this year from the G+, Twitter and Facebook communities. In addition to that, each airmen received 8 or 9 cards with personalized messages in them! Thank you all so much for your support!





There were airmen here who had received gifts last year that were shocked that I managed to do it again. Specifically, Airmen Chance has asked me to extend his thanks to all of you. Last year, he received a Craftsman tool set. He informed me yesterday that he uses it regularly and that it was an amazing gift. Airmen Clark received an electric guitar last year, and has been teaching himself how to play!




It was such a joy to see the look of surprise on the new airmen's faces when they were told that they had a Christmas present.

I chose to go with embroidered blankets as their gifts this year. Each blanket said "In war there are no unwounded soldiers. RAF Mildenhall 2012". I made sure that they were very good quality blankets. The airmen all seemed to love them and many wrapped themselves up into them, or snuggled with them for a few moments.






There were several exclamations of surprise when the airmen saw that their stockings had also been embroidered with their names on them! They had a blast going through them and seeing all of the goofy little toys that were included. I filled the stockings with candy too. Even managed to get some of the old fashioned candy sticks!





















So thank you all for how much you did this year. I've got pictures to show this time!! I'm so excited and grateful that all of you care as much as you do about these airmen. Their smiles definitely warm the heart.

Showing such acts of kindness goes a very long way over here. Last year, you all helped save a life. This year, you made all of these people and so many more smile. I couldn't get pictures of everyone, as some of the guys work mid shift and I am in bed long before that! But I shared some of what I was able to get. Everyone who helped, by donating, writing cards, retweeting, sharing, etc made a difference. So thank you.

I still have cookies and more cards to deliver this weekend. And if any more cards come in, I will be handing them out too. These airmen expected nothing, and were so happy to receive anything at all. ALL of them wanted me to extend their thanks to you guys. So thank you. From them and me. =D

Sunday, December 09, 2012

Stigmas

 There is a sort of stigma attached to people that come from broken homes. Those of us raised by the foster care system get labeled. People assume that we are going to fail before we even start something. I've seen it time and time again throughout my life and it irritates the hell out of me.

No one expected me to succeed in life. When I was 14, I was standing in front of a judge because my biological mother had once again abused me and they were finally terminating her parental rights. I hadn't been in trouble, hadn't done anything wrong. We were there solely based on the abuse that my egg donor continuously put me through. I will never forget the words that the magistrate said to me. Word for word, they ring in my ears. He said "If it was legal to order you to be sterilized, I would. I hope you never have children because you will not be able to break this cycle of abuse". BOOM, set up to fail long before I even thought about having children.

Then, no one expected me to finish high school. With all of the moving around that I did, and all of the constant changing, I wasn't expected to succeed. I ended up getting my GED, but later found out from my school counselor that I had in fact had enough credits to graduate with my class. I didn't know this because my egg donor had found me and abused me again, so I missed the last several weeks of school because I didn't want to show my face with all of the bruises on it. I didn't want to be remembered that way. I had assumed (wrongly) that since I missed my final exams, I wouldn't be eligible to graduate. So technically, I have both a GED and a diploma. Not too bad for a girl that no one expected to make it past 10th grade.

The worst of it though was when I did become a single teenage mother. I had used protection, was in a steady relationship, etc. But when I became a mom, it was assumed that I was going to fail. Everyone in my life believed it. I seemed to be the only one that believed in myself.

I'm not going to lie, it wasn't easy. In fact, it was the hardest thing I had ever done in my life. Being solely responsible for the well being of another life isn't an easy undertaking. My son's father was never in his life. I had him terminate his parental rights when my son was born. I wasn't going to tie him down with a child and or child support when I knew full and well going into our relationship that he never wanted children. I have never regretted that decision either.

My son is now 15. He's never been taken away from me, despite my biological mother trying her hardest to have it be so. She is bi-polar and schizophrenic and refuses to take her meds like she should. She's called the cops and social services on me more times than I can count. She's called and made accusations that I was abusing my child, even though her and I have no contact whatsoever. Each time, the allegations were deemed not only unfounded, but preposterous. She was even arrested by the sheriffs office the last time for false allegations against me and falsifying a police report.

I've done the best that I can in my life. I try to be the best mother that I can be to my kids. I am in a healthy, happy marriage. I finished high school, went to college, etc. All in all, I think I'm doing pretty well.

But back to the stigma...

In times like now, when my son was severely bullied and is battling with the depression that comes with it, I am being blamed. It's expected because of the life that I had. I hate that. Even mother's that didn't get pregnant until later in life still have children that struggle with bullying.

I have had people say to me "Well, with YOUR past, it's no wonder he's not adjusting well in school".

People, that hurts. What he is going through now has nothing to do with my past. It has only to do with what those other kids put him through.

I may have come from a broken home, but please stop judging me by my mother's choices. I am not her, I am stronger than her, and I will NEVER treat my children the way that she did.

I am choosing not to fail. I just wish you all would stop labeling me by my past. I didn't do anything wrong then, and I'm not doing anything wrong now.

Labeling people based on things that have happened TO them is cruel. Try judging people based on what THEY have done. On their actions alone, not on the actions of those before them. Because even serial killers can come from a stable home. And not all kids who were raised in good homes turn out right.

Stigma's suck. Please stop it.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

In a world of Sheldon's...

I'm not the slightest bit technological. I don't have a geeky bone in my body. Yet, it seems like everywhere I look, I am surrounded by geeks and nerds.

My twitter feed is full of people posting about themes and operating systems. There's a constant war going on about which OS is the best one, who the best developer or themer is. My G+ is even worse. Between the scientist, the computer nerds,  the gamers, the photographers, etc, it's all geek to me.

I feel like I'm the Penny in a world full of Sheldon's. Somehow, against all odds, I fit into this world. I can't understand half of what is being said. I have little to no interest in HOW physics/computers/gaming systems/cameras work. I just want them to. I know that it takes the genius of others to make these things work the way that they should. But try as I might, I can't stay interested in the inner workings of it long enough to figure it all out.

I got involved in this world because it was important to my husband, and I wanted to spend time with him. I wanted to understand the things that he was interested in. Instead, a different side of his world opened up to me.

I may not understand geek speak. I may not care about ram, roms, etc. But I do care about the people in this strange and foreign world.

Lately, I have found that more and more of the members of that society come to me for relationship advice. They ask me for guidance in making the more social decisions in their lives. They trust their feelings, emotions, thoughts and hearts to me. It's a big responsibility. But it's also a privilege. I love that I can contribute something to a world that baffles me at times.

What I love the most though is how protective these geeks can be. When I'm down, they are there. Trying their hardest to encourage me. They point out all of the good things about me that I don't always see. Seeing myself through their eyes is astounding. When someone hurts me or irritates me... HOLY SHIT! They come running with their light sabers held high and ready to defend me!

I live my life with my emotions. I'm not logical or analytical about anything. I lead with my heart. I do and say things without thinking of the consequences until it's too late. And yet, there is this entire social group out there that points out how important that is. How it's crucial in life to have someone who will always be honest with you. Who thinks outside of the box. Who isn't afraid to feel.

I think that's the biggest thing. So many of the people in this world are too afraid to feel. They only allow themselves to be hurt so many times before they realize that the most logical thing to do is to just stop caring. I can't do that. I get knocked down over and over again and I still put myself out there. I still care about people. I'll do as much or more for a total stranger than I would for my loved ones at times.

So while I may feel like Penny at times, the flaky actress who's lost by most of the conversations happening around me, I know without a doubt that the Sheldon's in my life cherish me. They see something in me that I can't always see in myself. And I know that they contribute quite a bit to my own life too. I don't think I could have gotten through the last few months without them. Logic makes sense sometimes. Even to the Penny's of this world.

Our love story


I met my husband 4 years ago. It was a complete and total fluke. We've got one of those stories where things shouldn't have worked out, but they have. So that's what I'm going to write about today.

Hubby and I met online. His ex-fiancee had introduced him to the site that we met on, and my ex boyfriend/friend had introduced me to it. It wasn't a dating site at all and neither of us were even considering getting involved in another relationship at the time.

But one day, a guy on the forums posted a thread with his phone number and invited others to do so. The idea behind it was that we could send each other encouraging messages, silly messages, or even just tell our secrets to a stranger. Well, hubby posted his number and I posted mine. Which if you know either of us, you know that is completely out of character.

So anyways, I took down a bunch of the numbers. Anyone who had posted theirs, actually. Hubby had only posted a very few things in the forums, so it's not like I knew much about him. He was just one of about 50 numbers that I had taken down that day.

I started texting people and they started texting back. But this one ASSHOLE never ever texted me back. I texted him the same message every time, "Sweet dreams and sweeter awakenings" and he never responded. GRRR

 I was sitting at my friend's house one night after work. My ex had the kids, so we were drinking and being goofballs. I decided that I was going to text him one last time, and if he didn't respond, I was deleting him from my phone. I didn't want to be that crazy chick from the internet that wouldn't leave him alone! 0_O  What do you know, he chooses the night I'm drunk to finally respond. The conversation went like this:

Me: Sweet dreams and sweeter awakenings
Him: I love it when you text me that. No matter how bad my day has been, it always makes me smile.
Me: Really? Cause I always feel like an asshole since you never text me back.

From there, we texted the entire night, until my thumbs were quite literally cramping. Oh, and I had T9 still on my keyboard, so that was even worse. The next day, he took a leap of faith and decided to call me after he got off of work. Well, from then on out, we were inseparable. If we weren't at work, we were on the phone. In one month alone, we ran up 8,800 minutes on the phone with each other!

The third night that we were talking, we were about to hang up when out of no where, I blurted out that I loved him. 0_O YIKES! I freaked out, started apologizing, etc. He told me to shut up. Then he tells me that he thinks he's falling in love with me too.

Exactly one week from the day we started texting, he asked me to marry him. Yep. One week. We were living 1450 miles apart, had never seen each other face to face. We're both laying in our respective beds talking to each other when all of a sudden he blurts out a proposal. I offered to let him take it back, but he meant it. Of course, I said yes.

I don't know what it was about him or me, or the circumstances that made us just go with it. Neither of us would typically do anything even remotely close to this. We don't behave in this manner. But for some reason, it just felt right. We followed our hearts and the rest fell into place.

Exactly 2 months to the day that we started talking, we were married. We only met face to face 10 days before our wedding.

That was almost 4 1/2 years ago.

I think part of what made the both of us so quick to just jump in and leave was the fact that I am a cancer survivor. I overheard him on the phone with his dad a couple of days before we got married. His dad and asked him what the rush was. Hubby told him that I was a cancer survivor and he didn't want to waste a single day without me.

I still remember the day that they told me that the cancer was fully gone. I cried my eyes out. Not because I was happy, but because I was afraid my husband was going to leave me! I had honestly thought that he took the chance and married me because I was probably going to die soon anyways. Imagine my surprise when he stuck around. Hell, he laughed at me when I even suggested that he might leave me over that!

I am slowly learning how to truly live. My husband shows me every day how wonderful life can be. I've spent most of my life being told that I was going to die soon. For the past 4 years, I've been learning to actually think about a future. To have hopes and dreams. To want more out of life than dr's appointments and just surviving. He doesn't let me just settle for breathing. (There have been many days that just having that was a miracle, I didn't dare ask for more)


I'm still amazed that he loves me as much as he does. I'm also amazed at my own capacity for love. I didn't know that I had this much love to give to one person. It's incredible to know that I can trust someone wholly and completely. To know that even in our worst moments, when it seems like the fighting won't end that night, he still loves me. I know without a doubt that divorce is not an option for either of us. We made our vows, we're in this for life.


He is so much more than my other half. He's my best friend, my secret keeper, my healer, my lover, my personal cheerleader, my life coach, my children's father and the most wonderful man I've ever known in my life. If my kids grow up to be half the man that he is, then I will be thrilled.

So that's our love story. We both stepped out of our comfort zones and just let our hearts makes the decisions. I should probably do that more often. My heart's pretty smart. =D

Monday, December 03, 2012

Waiting and frustrated

I started today off on a good note, but unfortunately, it's gone to shit again. I'm trying to stay calm, but it's so frustrating.

I'm not doing well at all with the waiting on others routine. I feel like I've waited long enough. But obviously others don't feel that way. They see each task individually, whereas I see things as a whole.

As a whole, I have been waiting since September 6th to get everything done. As a whole, since that day, my son's life has been altered. My life has been altered.

On September 6th, my son was brutally assaulted.

On September 10th, my husband had to leave for a few weeks.

On September 11th, we had to deal with the disciplinary committee at the school and my son had to face his attacker. That was also the day that I first saw the video of the assault.

On September 24th, my son ran into his assailant unexpectedly on the base during his lunch period. He was so upset, I had to come and pick him up from school.

On September 25th, my son lost it at school and stormed out of the assistant principal's office when she told him that the assault had happened nearly a month ago and to get over it.

On September 27th, my son told me that he was suicidal. I rushed him to the emergency room for a psych eval.

On September 28th, they brought my husband home early so that he could be there for my son.

I then had to fight tooth and nail to get my son seen by a mental health professional. It wasn't until
October 17th that he was FINALLY seen by someone. Because they do NOT have the resources here for him.

On October 23rd, my son's psychologist started the process for us to leave the country.

I've had to wait for the Dr's since then. I've had to wait for them to rewrite our EFMP's.

 I had to wait for appointments to get the rest of the paperwork filled out by all of the other doctors. I've had to beg and plead with Dr's to complete ALL of the paperwork.

I finally got all of the doctors to finish signing last Thursday. That was November 29th. It took them over a month just to finish the clinical side of the paperwork.

I had ONE form left. ONE. It was a letter to the EFMP reassignment office from my husband. Of course, I had to draft it up. I got it to him on November 27th. Six days ago.

He needed it redrafted a bit and his section chief said that he would have it ready on the 28th. We went in on the 28th to pick it up and it wasn't ready. So we were told he would have it to us that evening.

Well, no one seems to know that they need a commander's signature for stuff. So then we find out on Thursday evening that it will not be ready because it needs to be routed up. Cause you know, in the military, you have to go up an entire chain of command for a single piece of paper to be signed.

Well, they messed up the paperwork, so after it had been routed part of the way on Friday, they tell us it has to be started all over again and we could pick it up on Monday.

Well, it's Monday. My husband called earlier and was told that he could come and pick it up. The paper needed two more signatures. Of course, once he gets there, he's told that the next person in the chain that has to sign the form is at an appointment that they weren't aware of.

Hubby came home and told me that it would be ready today. Their workday usually ends about 4pm. So when he hadn't been called to come and get it by that point, I called. I just explained how important this one form is for our family.

Within 5 minutes of my call, hubby got a call saying that he could come and pick up the form. It was finally signed.


But it's still a very long process. Once I can FINALLY turn that one form in, we have to wait on someone else to check and make sure that we have a completed package. Then and only then, can she get all of the forms ready for submission.

Then once they are ready, I have to pray that hubby gets time at work to upload them to the system. Once it's all finally uploaded, we have to wait another 6-8 weeks for an approval, and then yet another month after that to finally get out of here.



Thankful for the good ones



When you're spiraling the way that I am, and you're struggling with everything, you don't know what's real and what's not. You don't know if you're just imagining that people are being horrible, or if they actually are. That can be confusing. It can also be extremely frustrating, not only for the person battling depression, but for all of those around them.

After my last post, I had some amazing people reach out to me. Two of them I already knew were there, but one person in particular surprised me a bit. I've always liked this woman, but our lives are vastly different, so we don't really get together much. She's a sweetheart though and took time out of her day to really check in on me and to reach out. She had no reason to really do so, other than she cares. So thank you Vanessa O for texting back and forth with me. Such a small act made a huge impact and I really appreciate it. For that one moment in time, I didn't feel so alone. I just want you to know that it really did make a difference for me.

It's been really difficult for me lately. Reaching out has been both good and bad. I've had 3 people who have been absolute rocks throughout all of this. Amber, Wendy and Holli. These 3 girls keep in regular contact with me, make absolute sure I'm ok, and let me know that some of what I'm feeling is completely valid.

They don't tell me to get over it, they don't tell me that I'm pathetic for feeling the way that I do. And most of all, they are constantly there. Even if they are sick of hearing all of my whining, bitching and complaining, they have NEVER let on about it. Instead, they continue to reach out to me. To validate my emotions. To tell me that yes, living this life would be depressing to just about anyone. They send me virtual hugs, make me laugh, and have no hesitations about calling out the dependasaurases in my life.

They encourage me. They show me all of the ways that I am awesome. They stand up for me. I don't expect them to go around telling people off for me. That would be unnecessary drama. However, they tell ME how they feel. They post their support on my blog for the world to see. As weird as it sounds, that shows me that they are  not ashamed of me. They aren't ashamed of my friendship. They value it and are ready to show the world just how much they care.

Because of them, and because of my wonderful husband and children, I managed to make it through this weekend without yelling. Without crying. In fact, I even laughed a couple of times. Little moments, where I can simply smile or chuckle a bit, are massive accomplishments in the fight with depression.

So to those 4 women, Vanessa, Amber, Wendy and Holli, thank you. Thank you for caring enough to threaten to call the cops if I don't talk it out. Thank you for standing up for me. Thank you for checking in on me. Thank you for never making me feel like a burden, even if it's the same shit different day for me yet again.

Because of people like you, I WILL get through all of this. I will manage to survive my time over here, I will win this battle. I am so grateful to have you guys in my life. You are wonderful people with huge hearts. Your love, caring, sarcasm, wit and charm will see me through until we can get out of here.

I also need to mention Anissa. She doesn't dwell on my depression. Instead, when we do get to talk, it's because she's telling me funny shit that happened in her day, or being witty, crass, etc. She's been my rock for nearly 4 years now.

As for here, there have been 4 girls right here in my life that I tend to lean on a bit too much. Alex, Vanessa A, Keara and Megan. I know I've been a bit quiet lately, and that I've backed off a bit from you guys. It's not because I have any issues with any of you. It's just because I've leaned on you all so much, I am trying to give you some space. I don't want to bring any of you down. I know you all have your own lives to live. But I do need to acknowledge how grateful I am for being there. For listening to my endless bitching and complaining. For including me in just the right amount of things. For not expecting a whole lot out of me right now. I know I've generalized a lot in some of my previous social networking posts about hating the people here. I didn't realize how that could come across to the four of you, and I am sorry for that. I do know how much you've been there. I'm just sorry that I can't be there more for you all right now.

So yeah. Today is a decent day. I'm looking out and seeing just how many people do care. It's not easy when you're as emotionally fucked up as I am right now. But for today, while I am clear enough in the head and in the heart to acknowledge the good people in my life, I felt that I needed to. Because I can't always tell them how much I appreciate them. I can't usually express what their friendship means to me.  But with all the bullshit they've all dealt with from me lately, the deserve to at least know that I do notice. That I do see how much they care.

Depression sucks. But I will get through it. I've got some pretty incredible people in my life, and I'm going to try really hard to focus on that. Instead of focusing on the negative. I know I won't be able to do that every single day. Sometimes the negative starts drowning me. But today I can. And hopefully tomorrow to. I had a pretty good weekend. Now, I'm aiming to have a pretty good week.

Thanks to you all who have been there. I'm just sorry that in my manic state, I couldn't acknowledge it before. If I'm leaning on you too much, please don't hesitate to tell me. I won't take it as you not wanting to be friends. I just know that I tend to lean on the same people over and over again and it can get to be a bit much for everyone.

Hugs and love. I appreciate you all more than you'll ever know.


*** Gawd damn it and beavers and shit! I forgot the other Meghan. Thanks Meghan E. Hugs and love to you!

Saturday, December 01, 2012

Living with depression

There are so many random thoughts going through my head right now. I need to get them out. I need to  at least attempt to make some sense of them. This post will probably be even more random than most of mine, which is saying a lot considering that I have ADHD. So if you choose to read it, just be forewarned that it may not make much sense to you. Hell, none of it makes a lot of sense to me. But I have to put it somewhere. I have to get it all out of my head and somewhere else.

I've always been a bit of a basket case. Most of the time I'm ok with it. But times like now, I'm not. I hate myself for the thoughts and feelings that are running through my head. But I can't stop them and that makes me hate myself even more.

I've been suffering from depression since my husband was stationed in England. I think it's the combination of the weather (horrible, always raining, very limited sunshine), the way his squadron treats people, the way people act here, etc. Last June, I had a complete breakdown and finally went to see a psychologist. He said that we needed to get a reassignment to go back stateside because my depression would only worsen the longer we stayed. But when I went to file the paperwork, the woman told me that since we had only been here for 6 months, we would never be approved. You had to be here for at least a year before they would even consider it. She said it was a difficult process and that applying and then being denied would probably only heighten my depression. So we didn't file.

Instead, I tried to get myself involved with things outside of the house. I started volunteering with the squadron as much as possible. I gave as much of myself as I could to make sure that others had the support and help that they needed. I was good at it. But I was also extremely frustrated because everything in the military is run by politics. Even just being there for someone has red tape all over the place. I just wanted to help people. That was it.

I cooked meals for families when something was going on in their lives. I stayed up all hours of the night talking to wives whose husbands had cheated on them, talking to husbands who were frustrated with their wives, encouraging new moms when they felt like they couldn't do it. I provided stockings to every one of our single airmen in the dorms, with very very limited help from the squadron. In fact, all they did was provide me with a list of names and then delivered the stockings and gifts because they told me that I wasn't allowed to.

And then it all blew up in my face. I had given and given and given of myself to these people and suddenly, every move that I made with them was the wrong one. I was even told by someone that I had too much heart to be a military spouse. I cared too much about people. WTF! How is that even possible? So now helping people and caring is a trait to be looked down upon? How confusing. But it started kicking up the depression again. Suddenly, I felt like every move I made was the wrong one and I would never be able to please anyone.

While I was dealing with that, my son was assaulted. Brutally. This wasn't just some school yard fight. The kid who assaulted mine was older, bigger, and a hell of a lot more of a bad ass than my child was. He has said since that he had every intention of hospitalizing my son.

Right after my son was assaulted, my husband was deployed. We're talking a matter of days. So I was left to deal with the aftermath of the assault on my own.

Now, let's get into the next 3 weeks of my life. Remember, this was only 3 weeks that the next series of events happened. My son was assaulted Thursday. My husband deployed Monday. On Wednesday I got a call saying he was forward deploying and he didn't know when he would be able to call again. I had no idea where he was. And while he said he was safe, I was hearing rumors over here that gave me cause to believe that he wasn't. Then we were dealing with the aftermath of the assault, police, school disciplinary hearings, etc. During this time, it was the anniversary of my daughters death. For the first time in 9 years, I had to handle it alone. And then I cracked my tooth and have to have an emergency root canal. As I'm laying in the dentist chair, I get a text from my son saying that he had walked out of the assistant principals office. Two days later, I had to get iron transfusions and then two days after that, I had to get a blood transfusion. And then 3 days after that, I got pneumonia. And then, the icing on the cake. My son informed me that he was suicidal. I rushed him to the emergency room and spent the entire night listening in horror to the abuse and bullying he was dealing with at school since the assault.

Yep, that last paragraph was 3 WEEKS. That's it. Just 3 weeks of my life.

So here's where I really started losing it.

The morning after I get home from the hospital with my son, I receive a phone call at 6:30am from a neighbor. Now, her and I weren't extremely close. I had posted about what had happened the night before, because I fully believe in reaching out when you need help. And right then, with my husband out of the country, I needed as much support as I could get. So anyways, this woman calls me, acknowledges that she saw the post about my son and then goes into her newly confirmed pregnancy. Seriously??? I've been at the hospital all night fighting for my son's life and you think I give a shit about you being pregnant? I chose to just shut up and not acknowledge it. Because I knew I had nothing nice to say to her about it.

Let me give you a tiny bit of back story here though. Several of us in the neighborhood started meeting for coffee once a week over the summer. This woman bitched and complained about her kids every single time. She said that she hated them, she wished she had never had them, they were too much for her, etc. So when she told me that she was pregnant again, I did not have very nice thoughts.

So I tried over the next few days to ignore her. But she kept bringing up the damned pregnancy. Finally, she actually asked me why I hadn't congratulated her. I told her to drop it, to let it go, but she kept pushing it. So I finally snapped and told her that I hadn't congratulated her because she was a dumb ass and didn't need to be having any more kids. Well, being the strong Christian that she is, she retaliated stating "Well, God blessed me with another child so he must think I'm a good mother. But he definitely questioned YOUR parenting, since he didn't even trust you with your daughter."

Needless to say, I was already questioning my parenting. I mean, my 14 year old son wanted to kill himself. So obviously, I was failing somewhere. So her words hit me deep. I was angry, hurt, and a small part of me felt that there was some truth to her statement.

I spiraled into an even further depression. I sought help. I reached out to people who I thought were friends. I started seeing my psychologist again. I even agreed to go on anti-depressants. Little did I know that 2 out of those 3 choices would backfire on me and make my depression even worse.

Two of my so called friends decided to tell me exactly how they felt about me. And trust me, it wasn't pretty. It basically came down to me being a low life piece of shit that nobody could stand. I was worthless, overbearing, cynical, cruel, heartless, etc. You name it and that was pretty much how they described me.

So reaching out to people ended up being a really bad idea. Reaching out was difficult, but having people shove all of my faults in my face made me feel even worse. No one cared that I was depressed, no one cared about what I was going through. They only saw all of the negative about me and chose to dwell on it. I felt slapped in the face.

And then the meds made me feel suicidal. Through ALL of this, I didn't want to kill myself. I knew it was a moment in time and that I would eventually get through it. But 3 weeks after being on the medication, I was driving home in my car one day and as a truck was driving in my direction in the opposite lane, all I could think was "2 feet, 2 feet in the other direction and it would all end. It would be over. Just 2 feet." That scared the shit out of me and I immediately called my doctor and got off of the meds. I refused to go on anything else other than ADHD medication because I couldn't risk having those thoughts. Not when I am fighting so hard to keep my child alive.

So now, I'm angry. I'm hurt, I'm angry, and I can't seem to feel anything else.

I am either crying, or yelling, or a combination of both. I am a complete control freak and my life is completely out of my control right now.

I'm trying to file the paperwork to get us a reassignment. There are NO resources available here for my son. The only child psychologist here is leaving this month. My son has zero outside resources now and it scares the hell out of me. I'm trying my hardest, but because of my own depression, I definitely don't always help the situation. So I'm trying to get all of the paperwork done as quickly as possible because it's still going to be 6-8 weeks before we get an approval, and then another month to out process. I have had to wait on so many people to fill out the documents that I needed from them. No one seems to understand that it can quite literally be a matter of life and death for my child. If he kills himself because he's without resources and I'm waiting on a damn document, I will never ever forgive myself. I feel like I am failing him. I didn't protect him from the assault. I didn't prevent the kids at school from telling him to kill himself. I didn't keep him safe. And now, at a critical time in his life, I can't even get a damned packet of paperwork filed on his behalf. I have no control of my child's future right now and as a mother, that is the worst feeling ever.

I'm pissed off at "friends" that haven't been there. For turning their back on me at the slightest change in my behavior. For not even considering that maybe, just maybe, I was going through hell and needed some support.

I'm even more pissed now though. Because these friends knew that I was battling depression. They knew that I was having a hard time. Yet now, they want to be in my life because someone else pointed out just how difficult things have been for me. NOW they feel bad for saying/doing what they did. Because they didn't realize how much I was going through?

Well, to those "friends", all I can say is FUCK YOU. You did know a lot of what I was going through, and you've known since the start of our friendship that I have been battling severe depression since we moved here. You didn't care. The only reason you're even making an attempt right now is because you feel like shit. I don't need pity friends. I need people in my life who are going to be there through the good, the bad, and the really fucked up. You walked away. So please, do us both a favor and stay the fuck away.

I'm so mad. I'm yelling and screaming about everything. To the point that I've pretty much stopped talking. Because I even yelled at my kids over Christmas. Over FUCKING CHRISTMAS. Who the hell does that? I quite literally feel like the worlds worst mother right now. I've apologized to them like crazy, but it doesn't take away what was said. Just like all the hurtful and hateful things that others have said to me lately won't go away. It just sits there, in the front of my mind. A constant reminder of just how shitty I really am. So I feel terrible for my kids. I hate myself for yelling at them. I've talked to my therapist, their therapist, etc. I'm trying to fix some of the damage that I've caused but I will never ever be able to completely repair it. I failed my kids in that moment.

When I'm not yelling, I'm crying. I dwell on everything that has been said and done lately. I question all of my friendships over here, because if these two can have such an underlying hate for me, then does everyone else? I don't know who to trust, so I trust no one. Which makes me feel even shittier, because I know that there are a couple of people who have done nothing to deserve the mistrust. But I can't. I can't trust anyone right now, because never in a million years would I have thought that either of these women hated me as much as it has come out that they did.

So yes, I'm a hot mess right now. I'm an emotional wreck. Crying, angry, hurt, confused. I feel rejected. I feel like I'm sucking the life out of everyone around me. So I'm trying my hardest to just not have people around. To isolate myself in my own little world. In a world where no one is hurting me and I am not hurting them. I live each day just trying to get through until my next psych appointment.

I know that things will eventually get better. I do know that I have some incredible friends, and I am aware enough to realize who has been there for me and who has not. Even at my lowest, I know that there are some people that care. But that doesn't help in those moments that I feel like I can't handle one more rejection. I don't want to be a burden on yet another person.

I just want to smile again. I want my kids to laugh, to smile, to want to live. I want us all to be ok. So yes, I'm getting us all the help that we need. But what we need the most, is to get out of this life sucking hell hole. It's really hard to battle depression when depression has so many weapons and all you have is a strong will and stubborn pride. But that will get me through. Because even though my mind still wanders on occasion to what it would be like for everyone if I was gone, two things keep me going. One, my son needs me. I am his only advocate right now and he needs me. And two, I'm too fucking stubborn to give anyone here the satisfaction of knowing that I'm gone.

We're realistically looking at about 3-4 more months here. I can handle it for that long. This is just a blip in our lives. We will get through it. It's hard as hell, and at times, I feel like I'm wading in quicksand, but I know deep down that we'll get through it.

There have been many more moments lately that have affected me, but when you're severely depressed, pretty much everything sends you spiraling down into that dark sinkhole of self depreciation. I can't let those moments consume me. Well, to be honest, they do. But I won't give up. Not happening. I know that I have more reasons to live than I do to die. So I'll make it through. Even if I do it by isolating myself from just about everyone IRL for now. It's a way to protect myself. And to protect them. Cause I"m pretty fucking brutal when the anger hits and I never know when it's going to hit. I can't control it. I've tried. Trust me, I've tried. So yeah.. In order to not fuck up anyone else's day, I'm going to hide out in my own little world and just hang out with the friends that live in my computer.

So I guess that's about it for now. I know this was long and if you managed to actually stay with me the entire time, then thank you for "listening" to my rambles. I just needed to get it all out somewhere. Gawds knows everyone is sick of hearing my "woe is me" stories.

**** Just to be clear, I know that some of the people in my life that have hurt me lately didn't set out to.  But considering my state of mind right now, it DOES hurt though. So No, they may not be asshats to anyone else, but I personally can't stand them. I'm hurting, whether they meant for me to or not.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

It's too much for one person/family

I'm exhausted. Not just physically, but mentally and emotionally.

I know that I'll get through everything that is going on, but to help me heal, I need to write.

This base really gets to me. Not only is the weather depressing, but so are the people. I'm not used to being treated so horribly. I've never dealt with so many back stabbing, conniving, manipulative people.

And in all honesty, I've never felt so alone.

In less than two years time, my family has gone from a happy healthy one, to one ridden with depression. My kids are absolutely miserable, as am I. The only thing we really have to hold on to is each other. That's a huge burden for everyone to bear.

We're so used to being happy, independent, self sufficient people. All of us. We've all always had our own hobbies, our own friendships, etc. My husband and I have never been that couple that absolutely must do everything together. We've maintained our individuality. For us, that's kept us strong. We come together and share our lives, without immersing ourselves so far into each other that you can't tell where one begins and the other ends. We've never wanted to be the couple that got divorced after the kids were out of the house because we suddenly realized that we had put nothing into our own relationship. So we maintained our lives where we needed to, and merged the parts that we should. It's always worked so well.

And yet now, I find myself feeling like I have to lean on him more and more. For emotional and mental support. I have very little interest in life outside of my family anymore. It's not that I don't want to. It's that I don't know how to deal with so many outright cruel people.

People here go out of their way to hurt you. They do everything they can to make you as miserable as possible. I'm not the only one experiencing it either. Typically happy, laid back women are turning into a nervous wreck over here. We all walk on eggshells because you never know when something you say will be misquoted and then used against you. You never know when one seemingly innocent comment will end your friendships.

I don't know how to live like this. Never knowing who is truly your friend, not knowing who to trust, if anyone. It's scary. It's hurtful. It's depressing.

I want to go back to that woman that I once was. I'm so tired. Tired of being scared, tired of being lonely, tired of putting so much on my husband because I just can't face anyone or anything any more. He deserves so much better. He deserves the woman that he married. I'm trying so hard to be that woman, but I don't know how to here.

I've tried to just walk away from all of the toxicity. It's not that easy. When you're isolated and alone, and most of your friends live in your computer, things go wrong. It gets lonely. Really really lonely.

I need out of here. I need to find myself again. I need my light back.

I'm exhausted. Even the light at the end of the tunnel feels like it's been extinguished.

Friday, November 09, 2012

Airmen stockings 2012

So it's that time of year again when I'm sitting here begging for money. For those that know already, I've kicked off the airmen stockings program again.

Last year, I was able to raise the funds through my online community to provide Christmas to 50 airmen stationed overseas and living in the dorms for the holidays. Most of these airmen would not otherwise have Christmas. We raised $7,000 in 3 weeks. This enabled me to provide stockings, gifts, etc to our airmen.

We found out after Christmas that we saved two airmen's lives last year. Both of them were suicidal. Both felt that no one really cared about them. Both of them said that they were forced to rethink that once they received the gifts. They said that having a stranger show so much kindness gave them a renewed hope for their lives.

I've been asked by the airmen, by our command, and by the Android community to do the stockings program again this year. So far, I've been able to purchase the stockings and the gifts. I'm still currently short of funds though. I still need to raise the money to provide stocking stuffers. I had originally thought that I only needed another $1,000. However, because of Hurricane Sandy, it looks like I will need to nearly double that. I can't order online to ensure that the stocking stuffers will be here on time. So I have to buy locally. Unfortunately, the exchange rate is about $1.68 to their pound.

So I'm desperately asking for help again. I need about $2,000 more to pull this off as well as we did last year. That covers the stocking stuffers, gift bags and tissue paper. It also allows me to buy cards for the airmen. Last year, each airmen received about 5-6 personalized Christmas cards and I would really like to be able to do that again.

So if you can help, please do. These airmen are in a foreign country, away from their family and friends for the holidays. Ask yourself, if it were your child, wouldn't you want someone to show that they cared?

Every dollar helps. Every time someone shares this post, it helps. So please, even if all you can donate is a couple of bucks, please do so. It all adds up to enable me to provide Christmas for these airmen. I've put in nearly $2,000 of my own money. I just don't have any more to give and I'm still short. So please please help me out again this year.

You can donate at bit.ly/airmenstockings

Thank you all so much for helping me make this happen. For caring about these airmen, and for supporting your military.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Overwhelmed

Things in the past month have been absolutely insane for my family. I need to vent. I need to get it all out before I go absolutely insane. So please bear with me. If you're going to be a dick and troll, please know that right now, it could very well tip me over the edge. So please think twice before you act like a complete moron. Today is not the day.

I struggled with the decision to send my children back to public school. Since we have moved here, it's been a complete nightmare. Last year, the administration bullied my oldest son to the point that the assistant principal was relocated to another country. I pulled them out to homeschool for the year and they seemed to have done better.

But this is high school. That should be different, right? He should be ok there. That's when we all go into our own groups, we find ourselves, we make friendships that can last a lifetime. Or so I thought.

The first week of school, my son was with a group of kids as they were all returning from lunch. He only knew one of the kids in that group. The group started talking about how they were not only doing drugs, but selling drugs at school. My son said that he had to leave. (He wanted no part of it). The kids started threatening him. His so called friend was the worst. He threatened to decapitate him, then went on to describe how he would dispose of his remains. (The kid is an idiot and totally would have been caught). Anyways, my son reported the threats. In reporting the threats though, he had to report WHY he was being threatened. He did the absolute right thing, and I am proud of him for that.

However, his "friend" was in the worst trouble for the intensity of his threats and was supposed to be suspended for 3 days. Instead, he cut a deal with the principal and turned on about 20 other students who are also using and or dealing  drugs at the school.

The second week of school, on a Thursday, my son was assaulted by one of the kids that his "friend" had rolled on. Brutally assaulted. I've seen the video and it was horrible. The kid hit him in the face with a shoe. My son wears braces, so left his mouth a bit tore up. He then proceeded to push my son to the ground and kick him as hard as he could, over and over and over again.

We ended up in the emergency room, the police were called, the kid was charged with "Actual Bodily Harm" which is the equivalent of assault and battery in the States.

My son went back to school the very next day, against my better judgement. I understand why he did it. He wanted to show that he was ok. He wanted to face everyone. He didn't want to be a pussy.

His father deployed the following Monday.

Since then, my son has been violently terrorized. Kids have come up to him throwing bottles of pills in his face, telling him to go kill himself. They are taunting him, saying that his favorite food is shoe leather, telling him that they are going to beat his ass, stomp his spine and paralyze him. They've offered to get him a gun so that he can shoot himself, they have given him instructions on how to properly slit his wrists.

He then ran into his attacker and ended up having everything surface again. Luckily, nothing happened that day physically. But what it did to my son emotionally is something we will have to deal with in the long, slow process that it will take to get him better.

My son reported the incidents to the school. They told him to toughen up and to learn social skills and he wouldn't have the issues that he does. They blamed him for what the other kids were doing.

In the midst of all of this, I wound up getting pneumonia, needing iv antibiotics, needing a blood transfusion because my iron was so low, and worrying sick because my husband had been forward moved to another location. (The entire house was in turmoil due to all of this)

So last week, my son finally broke down and told me that he would "rather be skinned alive, dipped in salt, roasted on a pit and eaten by cannibals than to face another day in this world.

We ended up in the emergency room for a psych eval. The psychiatrist and I listened as my son told us of the horrors he had been through. The thoughts that were running through his head. I called my husbands command before heading to the ER and his supervisor also heard these things.

They had my husband back in country within 12 hours. We were told that under no circumstances was my child to go back to that school. They said that sending him there could cause him to hang himself in the locker room, just to give the kids the satisfaction of knowing that they had won.

So now, we're in limbo. My son needs psychiatric help. He needs to know that he's not alone in this. But I can't get him in for an appointment until the 29th. What the hell am I supposed to do in the meantime?

I pulled him out of school and the principal sat there telling me that by doing so, I was allowing my son to run away from his problems. He said that he needed to face them. We won't go into the details of how I handled that one, but needless to say, the principal is no longer vocalizing THAT stupid ass opinion.

In the midst of all of this, I'm dealing with my own depression. I feel like I have failed my child. I never should have put him into that fucked up school. I should have seen the signs sooner. I should have noticed something, done something, fought harder, loved him more. He wouldn't be in that position, he wouldn't feel the way that he does if I was a better mother to him.

I've been fighting with the stupid fucked up shit that people say in this situation. I've been told that I am a horrible mother for letting him get to that point. I've been told that God doesn't trust me with kids which is why he took my daughter from me. I've been told to move back to the States, take my kids away from their father, because THAT is what is supposedly best for my children.

I'm so tired. I'm depressed, anxious, overwhelmed. But I have to be strong. I have to be strong so that my child BELIEVES that life will get better.

I'm not suicidal, but fucking A. I just want to sleep until all of this is over. I don't want to face it. I don't want to deal with another stupid fucking person giving advice to me and my child. I want everything and everyone to go away, and yet I need support right now. It's conflicting, I know. Trust me, my own inner turmoil is confusing me enough.

So I'll be strong. Because strong is the only choice that I have right now. But I don't want to be. I want to hide out from the world. I want to lay in bed all day and cry. I don't want to shower, I don't want to get dressed, I don't want to cook or clean or read a book. I really don't even want to be sharing this with all of you. But this is the place that I go to vent my emotions, so that is what I'm doing.

I'm reaching out. It's the hardest thing I've ever done in my life, but I know logically that I can't do this alone. I just can't.

I can't think of how to end this. For my family, it's just the beginning of a long and treacherous road that we are traveling on. I feel like we're heading for a cliff at a 100 miles an hour. I just hope the brakes work.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The Truth about Military Wives

I'm so sick of us getting a bad rap. We're not all sluts, whores, money grubbing cunts. In fact, the majority of us are pretty decent. So let me clue you in on how things REALLY are.

I fell in love with my husband while he was active duty. I gave up my job, my home, everything, to move 1,400 miles away from the only life I knew. I gave up my roomy mini van (that I happened to love) for a more economical car because as a Senior Airman, we couldn't afford the gas for my van. I gave up all of my belongings and moved me and my 2 children clear across the country with nothing more than what fit into the trunk of my car.  I sold my furniture, my clothes, my kids toys so that we could be with him.

We lived in base housing for the first two years of our marriage. Anyone who has ever seen base housing knows that it's about the same quality as section 8 government housing. Because guess what? It IS government housing. I did my best to make that house a home.

My husband was given orders last year and we moved to England. 4,800 miles and an ocean away from all of our family and friends. It's miserable here. It rains constantly. My kids were bullied in the DODD school that they attended to the point that I had to pull them out and home school them this year. I have NEVER had issues like this with a school before.

There is a minimum of a six hour time difference between us and our family and friends. Which means that I can't just pick up the phone and call my best friend when I need to talk to her. I have to plan every phone call, often staying up late into the night just to hear a familiar voice.

My husband leaves to go to these incredible places that I can't go with him to. I stay home and take care of our two children. I haven't been any further than London since we moved here, and it's likely that I won't be able to go much further than that while we are here.

I can't work because his job takes him away, at times with little to no notice. If I work, then my kids are raised in a day care facility. I'd also have to work a minimum of 2 jobs just to afford the child care. THAT is the norm over here for families who have both parents working.

I am left for weeks at a time to deal with everything. If the furnace goes out, I handle it. If the dog needs emergency surgery, I handle it. If I need surgery and my husband can't take time off for it, I handle it.

Because that's what we do. We give up everything that we know and we move to new states, new countries, etc. We go through culture shock. We adjust to new environments, new cuisines, etc. We make an empty military house feel like a home in 48 hours because we know that our children need their belongings in order to feel a bit more settled.

I mow the lawn, pull the weeds, plant gardens that I may never get to see bloom. I pack his lunches, cook his meals, feed the airmen whenever they need a home cooked meal and a bit of family. I provide low cost child care to his squadron because I think it's ridiculous for people to have to work 2 jobs just to pay for daycare.

I never throw away curtains anymore, because who knows what size I'll need in the NEXT house. I keep more luggage in my closet than any of my civilian friends because I KNOW I will need it soon. I live in houses with icky white walls and I don't paint because I know I won't be here for long. I have no keepsakes from when my children were little because we just don't have the space for it.

When he leaves, I stay up until the wee hours of the night until he can call, because even after 4 years, I can't fall asleep without hearing his voice. Without knowing he's safe. I sleep with my cell phone, house phone and computer. I also take them all to the bathroom with me because I'm afraid that he will call during that 2 minutes that I'm in the bathroom and I'll miss my only chance to talk to him that day.

I live in constant fear that every kiss will be our last. I never know when that call will come. Will I even be home when he gets that emergency call telling him that he has to leave? I hope so. I spend the nights that he's gone crying into my dogs fur, hugging her close because THAT is my consolation when he's away. I get sick at the thought of another man touching me. They are not him. He is fighting for our country's freedom. He is putting his life on the line. The LEAST I can do is be sexually deprived for that same country's freedom. 


I have volunteered for his squadron,  putting in more hours than most people do at a full time job. My kids help me in every way that they can. We have raised money to ensure that the 50 single airmen living in the dorms last Christmas had stockings and gifts. I get phone calls from the other spouses at 11 pm wondering where their husbands are, I deal with suicidal airmen and their wives, I help get them financial counseling, etc. I bust my ass to make sure that the airmen and their wives are taken care of. I do this so that I know that anyone on that plane with my husband can have their head fully into the mission. So that they are not worried about what is going on at home. So that maybe, just maybe, I can help in some small way to keep my husband safe. 

Do I whine at times about how difficult this is? Yes. Do you ever bitch about your job? About your life? I'm sure you do. The only difference is that I am a military wife and according to all of you, I KNEW what I was getting myself into and I shouldn't complain.

Do I cheat? Hell no. Do I blow his meager earnings on shit we can't afford? Nope.

Do I get sick and tired of being judged simply because I am a stay at home military wife? Fuck yes. I do.

I am a military housewife. I am strong, I am capable. I am independent because he NEEDS me to be strong. He needs to know that I can take care of everything while he is away. And I can.

So now you know the truth about me. Maybe, just maybe, you'll think twice before you judge the next military wife you meet. We're not all bad. Please stop judging me based on that one wife you heard about on the internet. I am not her. I am a TRUE military wife.





Friday, February 24, 2012

Making a difference

Ok, ok, so I'm a little behind on getting this post out. Forgive me. I've had life happen all around me for the past few months and this is the first time I've had a chance to really sit down and give this the attention it deserves. 
As most of you already know, I only got involved in the Android community so that I could actually spend some time with my husband, Superuser developer, ChainsDD. Over the past year, I've gotten further and further involved with the community. Now, it's my go to place, my family, my support system. I know that no matter what is going on in my life, I can always turn to the community for support, or even an ass chewing if I need it. What I didn't expect though, was the  level of support that happened this past Christmas. 

It all started November 10, 2011. We had just gotten back from a visit to the States to see my husband's ailing grandfather. Being a key spouse for the squadron, I was in a meeting getting the run down of the holiday schedule. I was extremely upset over the lack of support for our single airmen living in the dorms. Everything happening for the holidays was catered to families. That bothered me. We have our families here with us. Those of us that are married are not alone over here. These airmen are, and I felt that more needed to be done for them. 
I decided to provide a stocking for each airman in the dorms. The other spouses were saying it couldn't be done. Too much red tape, no time to do any fundraising, etc etc etc. That pissed me off and of course, motivated me to prove them all wrong. So without thinking, I called the commander and told him that I needed a list of names of the airmen in the dorms because I was going to provide all of them a stocking for Christmas. 

And then it dawned on me what I had just committed myself too. YIKES! 

So I put out a plea in the Android community, begging for help. Originally, I was just asking for stocking stuffers. Or stockings. Hell, it was 6 weeks before Christmas and I had nothing but an idea and a lot of good intentions. 

The community stepped in and asked for a paypal link to make donations. 

Here's where I want to start crying....

Within a matter of days, we had enough in donations to provide the stockings. Decent stockings. But that wasn't good enough for you guys. You all found out that there would be at least 50 airmen with nothing for Christmas, and you stepped up to the plate and helped make Christmas amazing. 
The cards started flying in. I received more than 250 personalized cards for the airmen for Christmas. Not one of them had a generic "Merry Christmas" written on it. All of them had a message written out, thanking the airmen for what they do, for the sacrifices they are making, telling them that people do care about them. 
The donations were so overwhelming, with Android members antagonizing each other, pushing each other to donate more, to do more. One member went so far as to ask his grocer's butcher and cashier for donations. (He received them too) 
Within 3 weeks, you guys not only provided stockings for these airmen, but you provided hand written cards. (Each airmen received at least 5 cards personalized to them). The airmen also received gifts valued at approximately $150 each. We bought Craftsman tool sets, ipod Nanos, digital cameras, electric guitars, PS3 games, XBox 360 games, remotes for those game consoles, movie sets (Such as Band of Brothers), etc. 
These gifts were delivered by our squadron's first shirt "Santa" style. They were delivered to the dorm rooms while the airmen were at work. 
For weeks, we had airmen coming up and thanking us for all that was done. People asking about this "Android" community that had provided so many thoughtful gifts, cards, etc. Each stocking had the airman's first and last name written on it in glitter glue. (Will never do that again! OMG the hand cramps). =D

But the most surprising moment, was when we found out about a young airmen who honestly didn't think that anyone cared about him. An airmen who had gotten into some trouble and was having a hard time pulling himself out of it. 
This young airmen received one of the stockings, the cards and a gift. I didn't know this airmen before this, so shopping for him was a little nerve wracking. He ended up with the Band of Brother's set. 
This same airman went to the supervisors the day after he received his gifts and told them something that will affect me for the rest of my life. He told them that he had been planning to commit suicide over Christmas. He told them that he didn't think anyone cared about him and that he thought it was the best way out for him. Then he told them that because of the stocking, the gift and the cards, he no longer wanted to kill himself. That an act so random proved to be the most kindness he had seen in years. The movies were actually something that he had wanted (Phew, talk about luck). He had never had a stocking in his entire life. He had never received a Christmas card before. This young airman ended up spending the Christmas holidays at our home, surrounded by strangers who cared more than most people in his life ever had. 

Something that started out as me getting pissed off, ended up saving a life. 
I couldn't have done that without you guys. Without the support, then time, the donations, the dedication to your community and to your airmen. 

YOU saved a life this past Christmas by being there for total strangers. By being a community and by reaching out to someone that you didn't know. 

So thank you. Thank you for being a part of something that means so much to me. For being there for our airmen who are alone overseas. 

Our project is still being talked about. The airmen still refer back to that day when they are having a hard time, or when they start to get down on themselves. 

Keep making a difference. Keep helping strangers. 

I'll be starting things a lot earlier this year for the stockings program. I have to continue it. Knowing the difference it can make, there's no way I can drop it now. I'll be looking to you guys for help with it. 

Just an FYI: In 3 weeks, we raised $7,000 for the airman. Every single dime of that was spent to provide Christmas for them and for 2 families that were stuck in TLF during Christmas. (For those that don't know, TLF is the base hotel). So thank you guys again and again and again.