Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Babies on My Mind

It seems that I'm thinking of being pregnant and raising children a lot lately. It could be hormonal, it could be the blogs I read, or it could be that on Sunday the timing was just right for us to try to get me pregnant and we had lots of alone time in which to have sex. It felt kind of like God was smiling on our efforts.

And the timing was right for trying. I couldn't have planned that kind of timing if I tried. So, there is a very real hope that those sperm will meet that egg and we'll have a little one next year.

It didn't help my feelings that Monday night my mother-in-law said something about babies and dirty diapers and implied that I might not be able to get pregnant. It was just too soon after finding an elusive perfect time and led to me getting two or three times as hurt as I might otherwise have been.

After a night's sleep, I'm feeling better about life. I'm still wanting to avoid my mother-in-law, in hopes that I won't get hurt. But I'm reminded that there is hope and I just have to be patient, something I'm beginning to get very good at (a lot of my life lately seems to be me doing something and then waiting for the situation to fully be resolved by someone else).

So, that's where I'm at right now. Waiting and trying to keep my hope up that this month the timing was absolutely perfect. After all, I have babies on my mind.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Does She Ever Realize What She's Saying?

My mother-in-law is causing me pain, but I'm sure she'd say that it's not intentionally.

She has made several comments since we've moved in about wanting more grandchildren (here's a hint on how to help, leave us alone for more than 3 or 4 hours a week and stop pushing us to reproduce). In addition to that, she's made several comments that allude to the idea that I may not be capable of getting pregnant. I'm biting my tongue, sometimes almost literally, to keep from commenting that her comments are just hurtful.

It's bad enough my own mind is telling me that something may not be quite right. I can't do anything to find out right now, we have neither the money nor the insurance. All I can do is try to time things right and hope that Ace's sperm and my egg are willing to cooperate. It's semi-stressful enough trying to figure all this out with only our internal pressure on the situation. Add all the extra stress that we've had come pouring down lately (the past month has pretty much been fixing one problem after another, I'm ready for a day off of fixing problems).

I know that to my mother-in-law everything she's said is just commentary on life or her way of encouraging us. I know that she doesn't mean to say things that go right to my heart and rip into my tender emotional state. But she does, and I'm pretty sure she doesn't even know that she's just making me hurt. That she's saying things that echo some of my worst thoughts. That all these comments could end up really doing some major emotional damage if there is something wrong. That this situation has already caused me to wonder if Ace chose the wrong woman to try to create a family with, because what if there is something wrong with me?

The few comments she's made about adoption haven't helped either. She wants to point out the negatives, I'm guessing in an effort to prepare me for what she thinks could happen (although the negatives are still just potential problems for an adoption we haven't even tried to start yet).

To a degree, it's like she is cutting into the part of me that's a mother and criticizing it already. It's like I've failed as a parent before I've even had a chance to start, something that I don't know that I'd ever have felt if it hadn't been for her comments. I don't like it, but I don't know how to stop it. So for now, I hurt and hold my tongue and try to wait it out.

Monday, June 28, 2010

There's Still More Work to be Done

Ace and I have been trying to clean some on the room this weekend (while not doing too much, because we did want to celebrate our anniversary too). It's been busy and long and tiring.

After Ace's mother went through a bunch of stuff and gave most of it a new home, we still have 10-12 bins with of stuff that we've removed from that room. It's not really that big a room, but it was stuffed with stuff.

Part of what has me so tired tonight is that we rearranged the room tonight (which means Ace did most of the work, and I just attempted to not get in the way too much). The desk is on a different wall, so now our backs won't be to the door (although the lock should keep that from being a major problem). Our bed is no longer sharing a wall with my mother-in-law's office, but is on the wall the desk was on. The dresser (which was originally beside the desk) is now turned to the side. It actually helps make the room look bigger arranging everything that way.

We still have work to do. The book case needs some serious attention to finish clearing off and I still need to go back and fold and put away our laundry from last week. We have a closet to organize and a few other things to work out, but it's feeling much more like a good guest room instead of a cluttered mess.

Unfortunately, since there weren't too many places for all the stuff that was in the room, it's now in either the sun room (which has a narrow walkway through it) or the shed (which is almost completely full). I'm ready to be out of here, especially since we can't toss most the non-working things because "They might be useful one day." The part left out of that sentence is "if they can be found", which I know they wouldn't be.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Sometimes the Love Comes Shining Through

Ace and I are celebrating 7 years of being married. It's interesting, because I think we both feel like we've known each other longer, but that it also doesn't seem like it's been all that long since we got married (I checked with math, it's been 7 years).

Ace has been trying some to make up for the fact that we are still living with his parents (at least, I think that's part of it), so he's been doing lots of little loving things (like adding a locking doorknob to our door).

I think a big part of it is to give us a sanctuary in this too full house. While our stuff may still take up more room than we'd like in the bedroom we now share, the room isn't nearly as full as the rest of the house and we are almost done getting everything that isn't ours (except the furniture) out of the room.

On the plus side, Ace's parents went out of town for the weekend, so we're getting to have lots of alone time. I doubt they imagined that we'd spend most of our alone time getting online and getting stuff out of our room, but it's not a bad way to spend the weekend (at least, it's not when it adds to the feeling of being loved and cherished).

So, while it's not the best anniversary ever, it's been the best we can do this year. Next year though, I'm holding Ace to his weekend at a bed and breakfast get away plan.

Thursday, June 24, 2010


I don't often talk about my religious beliefs. Mostly because I feel like it's one of those topics that is better left alone in general. It's too personal to me to open myself up to just anyone and risk their censure of what I feel is the truth.

That said, I am a Christian. I've gone to a church for most of my life, and would be now if it weren't one of the only times Ace and I get to be fully alone (which usually leads to sex). When we get out of here, we'll go back to going to church, either in person or online.

I enjoy reading different versions of the Bible to see what they each say. So far, my favorite version is the Amplified Bible. I like the extra details that are put in to clarify things. It's a good reminder that the Hebrew or Greek words had a bigger meaning than a lot of the English words do.

I know several verses by heart, but don't know the reference to go with it on all of them. I know that "Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word," but I'm not fully sure where that is in the New Testament (Romans?). I know that some of the best conversations I have with Ace are about the Bible, something that thrills me. I like having a husband I can talk to about what I believe, who will challenge me to grow with him spiritually instead of leaving me to find faith by myself.

I am not ashamed of my faith, but I'm protective of it. It's not fragile, most of it having been formed during hard times filled with struggles necessitating strong faith, but it's intensely personal and I've learned to protect that which is personal.

I believe that what Jesus said (all that stuff in red, if you have a red letter Bible) is still as true today as it was when Jesus said it. I believe that I should try to be like Jesus, but that doesn't mean that I need to give up my laptop/car/technology/indoor plumbing/etc. I believe that new technology can be used to spread the Gospel, even if it's not the first thing that it's used for.

I have faith, but I don't normally talk about it. Maybe it's time to start. Maybe it's time to show another side of myself.

Me? Strict? If I Need to Be

I'm trying hard to think of something to write that isn't about my in-laws. It's hard, because this evening seemed to have more conversations about them than normal.

Ace and I were discussing what our thoughts are regarding his parents and our future children. We discussed the fact that we're willing to seem strict to our kids and our parents alike, if need be. We want to ensure that our authority is rock solid in our kids minds.

I mentioned that I'd be willing to take away inappropriate gifts, even ones given for birthdays or Christmas, if I felt it necessary. I'm willing to be seen as mean and unbending if it teaches my kids that they can't wear me down to get their way. Which is not to say that I plan on being unreasonable. I just don't want my kids eating candy/having dessert/pigging out everyday. I want to instill good eating habits in them from a young age.

Basically, I don't plan on letting my in-laws do some of the things that they've done with my niece. I recognize that life has a way of changing plans, but so far I'm trying not to be completely insane when planning how I want to raise my children. I just want my kids to understand that I love them, so when I make a decision about a food or a toy it's because I feel that it's what's best for them.

And as much as I'm not willing to let my in-laws do those things, I'm not willing to let my dad do them either. Knowing my dad, that shouldn't be a problem. My dad would be more than happy to clear things with me first if something is questionable. He wouldn't go against my wishes. I don't know that my in-laws would do the same, and I find it frustrating.

I'm trying to walk a line here. Like usual, I'm thinking carefully about what I put in a public place and what to leave unsaid. I'm trying to balance my feelings on the subject with the knowledge that someday one of my in-laws might potentially see this. I don't want to say something deeply hurtful, but I also don't want to ignore my feelings and let them fester.

I realize that since I'm not currently raising a child these thoughts might seem silly to parents. I recognize that reality might necessitate changes to some of our plans. But at the same time, the core thought should never change. My kids should know they are loved even when I'm doing something they don't like. My dad likes to remind me that parenting isn't a popularity contest, and that's part of what has driven our decision to potentially seem strict.

I'd rather my child "hate" me for a week over not getting a toy than have something much worse happen if I could have stopped it by staying an authority figure in my child's life. Kids will get over not getting toys/candy/dessert/whatever, most of the time within minutes or hours. I don't know if I'd be able to fully forgive myself if I let my child get hurt or killed because they didn't see me as having authority. And that is something worth remembering when boundaries are tested (by my kids or their grandparents).

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

In the End, It's a Wash

Over the weekend, we had a minor financial drama. Nicely we seem to have sorted it all out yesterday.

Ace had ordered something from a website and they included 10 free days of looking at their website (something he wasn't interested in). He e-mailed them a few hours after midnight on day 11, but they don't actually charge you for access until day 12 (in case you take a little extra time to remember to cancel). So, no big deal, right?

Wrong. They charged us for the next month. Ace responded telling them that he canceled and they needed to refund our money. The next invoice from them showed them refunding the money, but then taking it back out again. Ace e-mailed again, telling them that they weren't supposed to re-charge it, just to submit the refund and someone needs to be trained.

They e-mailed back that the charge had been voided, but our bank showed that they had charged us twice. So, we decided to ask our bank if we could dispute the charges. We could, if they all go through (they were pending at the time). Ace called this company 3 times before finally talking with the guy who sent the last e-mail (he didn't call back after the first time because he thought the e-mail had answered everything... except Ace called the first time after getting the e-mail). That guy didn't seem to understand why Ace was frustrated and stressed about the whole thing (he also claimed that the entire financial department had the day off, so I'm not sure he was all that honest).

Ace finally talked to someone higher up, who promised to call back within 30 minutes after finding out what he needed to do to fix the problem. He actually did call back before the 30 minutes were out. While he gave a slightly confusing message, he does seem to have fixed the problem since we've only seen their name pop up with one charge and one refund on our online bank statement.

So, yesterday was a bit more stressful than it needed to be (for other reasons as well, but I'm not ready to talk about those yet... they are still up in the air right now). But in the end, everything seems to have been worked out for the best. Or at least it was a wash, and I can live with that.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

For My Father

Today, the greeting card industry (or somebody else) has decided that we must honor dads. I'm feeling surprisingly emotional about it this year.

I don't get to see my dad for Father's Day, at least not this year. Instead, I got to spend time waiting for lunch with my father-in-law slowly getting closer and closer to me, ignoring all rules of personal space, until I needed to walk outside for a few moments to feel like I didn't have someone right on top of me.

But that's not what I want to talk about. I don't feel all that warm and fuzzy about my father-in-law, mostly because he's made it obvious that I'm not fully family and never will be. It's his loss, because I am awesome.

I want to talk about my dad, who loves me no matter what. He's a man who has gone without so that I could live a lot better than he was. He has kept me sheltered, even when it shouldn't have had to be his responsibility. He has offered kind words when I've felt like my life was at it's worst. And other than a little time where I was upset and stressed about my wedding and things said surrounding it, he has always been there for me to talk to.

He has told me that I am one of the 3 best things to come from his marriage to my mother. He has apologized and taken responsibility for his part in how crappy things were when I was a teenager (mostly because he wasn't there day in and day out). He reminded me that I was the kid, so I wasn't to carry any of the blame. He reminded me that the only way my mother can hurt him any now is to hurt us and it frustrates him that she's willing to do that to her own children.

In short, my dad is one of my heroes. He's not perfect, but I don't expect him to be. No matter how hard life hits him, he keeps getting back up and working on doing what is right. He inspires me to be the kind of parent he is now. He isn't afraid to be a strong parent and tell his kids no if they need to hear it. He admits he has a favorite child, but you would never be able to tell it based on his actions.

So, today I wish I could be with my father. I wish I had kids to let him spoil and love. I wish I could make his dreams come true and I could take away his physical pain. But all I can do today, right now, is let him know that I love him and that I hope he has a good day/week/month/year.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Stretch and Fly

I'm not quite sure what it is, but the past two days I've felt the urge to do gymnastics (which would be feat, since I don't currently have the ability to do a cartwheel, much less something more complex).

It's like all of a sudden I'm wanting to stretch my wings and fly, except I don't have wings. I get this urge occasionally, something you think my brain would solve with dreams of me flying, but nope. My brain may be a little too logical for dreams of flying on my own.

I am hoping, though, that Ace and I can spend some time this week looking at some of the homes in the Parade of Homes that's going on here in Tulsa (when he's not studying/playing WoW/whatever else). I like going out and looking at houses, even if we aren't buying/renting just yet. It's nice to know what options there are out there.

And now that I've been completely random here, I'm going to be completely random somewhere else. Later!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Send Alcohol

Oh people, it's been a crazy, crappy week over all.

Tuesday, the bed didn't get delivered until 11:45 p.m. Then, it took a little too long to find sheets. I stayed up through will power and sugar until after the bed arrived and was set up. By the time it came to make the bed, my brain seemed to have entered into self preservation mode.

Wednesday, Ace and I got out of the house for a while, because my fight or flight response was still a little too close to the surface. My mother-in-law just seemed to be too much for my still fairly worn emotions to handle. And I was doing pretty good finding a centered point away from the emotions, until we went to buy milk. All it took was a child crying and I was ready to flee (I'm not a fighter). It took almost all of my will-power to walk back to the front of the store with Ace and wait while we checked out before leaving. When we got back to the house, I took a nap to help soothe myself again. I'm not even going to talk about dinner that night, as I was too emotional for my own good.

Thursday, I felt much more normal. I had slept 10 hours, mostly without waking. I wasn't quite fully me yet, but my fight or flight response had settled back down. Thursday was, for the most part, a good day.

Today, however, has been kind of crazy. Ace and I went to fax something and then checked our mail, which lead to visiting some friends, which lead to looking at a thrift store (all those things, perfectly good things). Just a few minutes ago, my mother-in-law asked Ace to clear all the stuff we put on the table off of it. She had to go out to her garage to make space for some of it, but she still doesn't see her hoarding problem (not that I'm surprised about that). It doesn't help matters that I've been folding laundry, a task that my body hates because I almost never fold laundry somewhere where my back is fully supported. It's just lead to a few hours of feeling like this house is too crazy and roughly 5 more weeks here are roughly 5 weeks too many.

As I told Ace while clearing out our bedroom, I don't get paid enough for this. There isn't enough chocolate, alcohol, hot tubs, or any other thing in the world to make this worth wile. Fortunately for Ace, I'm doing all this for love.

But I'd still like someone to send alcohol (or chocolate, or chocolate alcohol). After all, my anniversary is in just over a week. I could use something to pick me up after this crazy week.

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Earlier this month, I set myself some goals for each day. Nothing hard, only a few that are potentially time consuming, but all important for me.

I'm reading Proverbs everyday, as well as reading the Gospels and reading along with a church Ace and I were going to when we lived in Springfield (although, right now they are reading the Gospels, so I'm reading 2 chapters of the Bible a day Mon-Fri and 1 on weekends). And I read my Bible chapters before I look at anything else online (I like the flexibility of the versions I get reading the Bible online).

When I get up, I'm doing my shoulder exercises (except the last Tuesday and Wednesday, because of the bed stuff). They usually take me less than a minute, but should help my shoulder a lot.

I do a lot of surveys and I'm now trying to do that as I find them in my e-mail so that they don't stack up (that has also fallen slightly off track because of the bed stuff). This is one of the time consuming things on my list, but they don't really take that long if I do them everyday.

I am trying to focus on listening to Biblical teaching everyday during the news, and following along in the Bible while the are teaching. This has been a little too hit and miss since I went to visit my dad last week, but I now have space in a cleaned out bedroom to be able to do that. This is "time consuming", but it's using some of my abundant free time, so I'm fine with that.

I'm also trying to write something, somewhere everyday. That's part of the reason I'm posting here more often all of the sudden. It's important to be in the habit of writing, since I'm a writer. So, I'm getting into that habit. It's probably the only habit that didn't suffer from this bed situation (I'll tell you the rest of that story later).

The only other things on my list of goals are things for me to pray about. The big one for me is that I'm praying for my Mom's happiness. I do want her to be happy, and that's something that I've struggled with some. It took me a long while to realize that it's okay for me to want her to find something that makes her happy. I'm starting to hope that happiness with spread throughout her life and make lots of changes there.

Anyway, right now, for the time being, those are my goals. Hopefully doing these things daily will make an impact. Hopefully spending more time in the Word will help me to spend more time living the Word in the rest of my life. Hopefully it will help me grow discipline in the areas of my life that need discipline. Hopefully it will help me heal emotionally from the past.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

I Survived

I survived the weekend. The room, while not fully empty, has a lot more space in it. Now if only they would deliver this new bed, I might get a chance to take a nap sometime soonish, I hope (we didn't get a call this morning about it, so hopefully there isn't going to be Ace sleeping on the floor and me sleeping on the couch tonight).

I'm exhausted. I've been going too many days on too little sleep. It didn't help matters any that Ace and I finally got to finish clearing stuff out of the room last night starting at 2 in the morning. My mother-in-law was working in there until 1:30, and by that point Ace and I were watching an hour long show (so we waited until it finished to start working).

We finished at 3:30, and I finally got into bed around 4:20. I have been dragging mentally all day. I managed to not say anything inappropriate to my in-laws the whole weekend (I'm pretty sure I said some inappropriate things about them, but not to them. It's a step in the right direction).

Yesterday, in the midst of everything feeling dramatic about the room, I started my period. On the plus side, I was right about PMSing and that it was about the right time for that. On the minus side, still not pregnant and still stinging slightly from a stupid comment from my mother-in-law about potential future grandchildren.

After the bed comes, if you need me sometime this next week you can find me catching up on my sleep.


Saturday, June 12, 2010

Just Get Rid of It Already!

Today, my father-in-law bought a full sized bed to go in there guest room (Ace went with him, they were trying to find something that would fully fix my bed, but that product isn't sold, so this is the new solution.). This means that after Tuesday, Ace and I will get to sleep in the same bed again. Yay for that.

Unfortunately, that means the room I've been staying in needs to be cleared out of all the stuff shoved in there by my mother-in-law. Who won't let us just throw stuff out. And has a serious hording problem that she can't see.

So, Ace and I have cleared almost all of our stuff out and my mother-in-law is now sitting in that room "sorting" stuff, which mostly ends up being she's making Ace put things in other, already over-crowded rooms. She's also ignoring the tubs my father-in-law bought for her to put stuff in.

Ace and I are ready to be out of here, but we're probably stuck here for another few months. It's going to be a long weekend, and probably an even longer week next week. We have no access to alcohol or chocolate, and I think I'm PMSing some. This isn't a great time for me, so I'm mentally biting my tongue and not yelling at my mother-in-law to just get rid of stuff already as that would not work.

Somebody please send help!

Friday, June 11, 2010

The First Time

I'm sitting here, alone, in my in-laws' living room, thinking. Ace is off at a prayer meeting and his parents are going grocery shopping. It's quiet, something that seems rare these days.

I was thinking about the first time I met my in-laws. I've actually known them longer than I've known Ace (but not nearly as well).

The first time I met Ace's parents, I was getting a ride back to OKC from Tulsa from Ace's brother, Ron* (who is also my friend). I was up in Tulsa with my church group, and it was decided that rather than squeeze into a van with 15 other people, I'd ride home with Ron.

* Not his real name.

Before we left town, Ron decided that I should meet his parents (I'm not quite sure why). So, he brought me over and I met them. I also got to meet my niece, because they were baby-sitting her at the time. The only other semi-exciting part of this story is that we had dinner before we left town.

I'm fairly sure Ron had a crush or something on me at one point. But, he never actually asked me out on a date. Instead, he would try to find other ways to get to spend time with me without any chance of being rejected. It was somewhere between cute and just weird. It also lead to me always wondering if I was just imagining his interest.

Had Ron asked me out, before I met Ace, I probably would have accepted. It probably wouldn't have lasted, as we aren't right for each other and it would have seemed like I was dating my brother. But he never did get his courage up to ask, so I'll never really know. And for that, I'm grateful.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

It's Not All Bad News

Shortly after we moved in with Ace's parents, he sat on the bed I'm sleeping in and broke what we thought was a slat. After that, the bed had a definite slant on one side, which caused me to need to sleep almost against the wall to get a fairly flat surface.

We planned on buying something to fix the bed, expecting that new slats would be all that was needed for the bed to be flat again. Today, we went to Home Depot and bought some 2x12 boards, cut in the right length.

Ace moved the mattress and box springs to try move the old slats out, and we discovered that he had broken one of the slats holding the springs in the box springs (it seemed to have a few other problems too). One of the old slats was on the ground (the one we thought he had broken)!

So, after moving the old slats (one was warped), Ace set the new, much thicker slats down and put the box springs and mattress down on them. Then I sat on the bed and 2 of the new slats suddenly fell down.

In order to completely fix my problem, we're going to talk to a friend who is a carpenter and see if he can come by and screw the slats into place. In the mean time, we're going to move one of the slats over and move over the box that's holding it close to in place.

On the plus side, my in-laws now know they need to replace to frame, box springs, and mattress (the mattress is just generally not so great). Also, we found a digital camera that Ace and I had lost a couple of years ago (now, we just need to get it working again). I would imagine that putting 100% fresh batteries should help in our efforts to have 2 working cameras.

Monday, June 7, 2010

The System is Broken

Ace is trying to get on unemployment. In fact, that seems to be his parents idea of a 30th birthday gift (Happy Birthday, ask the government to give you money).

Oklahoma allows people to call, apply online, or go talk to someone in person. First, Ace tried to apply online, but they couldn't find his SSN in the system. Then he tried to call, but there was a problem with the toll free number and the long distance number disconnected him after telling him they had too many people trying to call right then.

So, we went to talk to someone in person (and run another errand), only the person was off today, and until noon tomorrow.

While it's somewhat nice that going on unemployment isn't forever married to Ace turning 30, getting everything done today would have been extremely helpful in that we would start getting benefit's as soon as possible (no one thought about unemployment until Saturday, which sucks for us).

It was already an odd day, since Ace had to pick up his one and only paycheck from his former job today. The only bright spot has been that he got an extra piece of chocolate from Godiva and 10% off the 2 chocolate bars we bought, with an offer from the guy who checked us out to conveniently forget that he already gave us 10% off if we get the e-mail and come back in to buy more chocolate (not sure we would take it though).

So, yeah. The unemployment system is broken today, and life decided to be somewhat stinky. Good thing we're going to visit my dad tomorrow. That should help make everything seem better.

Friday, June 4, 2010

He Loves Whom?

A few minutes ago, this exchange occurred:

Me: (whispering) I love you.
Ace: (whispering) I love me t...
Me: (laughing loudly)
Ace: (laughing)
Ace's Mother: (confused look at us)
Ace: I love you too.

And then I explained what happened to Ace's mom and we all laughed.

That has got to be one of the funnest things he's ever inadvertently said. Is it any wonder that I love this man?

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Life Sucks Sometimes

People, today has been sucky. Yesterday was a seemingly great day, but today decided to kick my emotions all over the place.

Ace left for work at his normal time, after asking me to work on reformatting his hard drive since his computer was having problems. I started the process, expecting an interesting day switching which computer got my attention (mine for fun, his for work). Then, shortly after his shift started, Ace entered back into the house.

He was fired. 2 weeks and 1 day of work, and he's been fired for curiously odd sounding reasons. His employer supposedly hired people who have more experience in sales, so several of the people hired around the time Ace was are being fired. Except his direct manager hadn't heard anything about it.

I'm tired of all this major, sudden change happening. There have been a lot of changes in the past year, and it's obviously not done yet. Unfortunately for us, this change was out of nowhere and we have to just quickly adjust to both of us being looking for work again.

On the plus side, we don't have to move. On the minus side, we don't get to move. It's frustrating, but all we can do is move on.