Keep Moving Forward

Moving has been… Difficult.

We’re not even there yet. Well, Ivy and I aren’t out there yet. We still haven’t found a house. Part of the problem is both Matt and Red need to have a full time job before we qualify for renting anything. And right now only Matt has the full time job.

I’ve forgotten how much packing just wrecks your house. Things that normally fit so well on your shelves or in their little nooks and crannies are suddenly taking up 500% more space in giant cardboard boxes that dominate your living space.

I somehow shaved off part of my tongue eating one of those frozen California Pizza Kitchen cracker crust pizzas. I still don’t understand how it happened but about halfway through my meal I realized the bottom of the tip of my tongue really freaking hurt. I showed Matt and he remarked that I was bleeding. When I went to look in a mirror I found that a small strip of flesh had been like, shaved off and was hanging on by a thread. I don’t get how it happened but I’m sure the speed and vigor with which I ate the pizza is to blame. Now every time I eat anything salty or acidic my tongue burns.

I made my older sister cry the other night. Not like, on purpose or anything but it was still my fault.

She had visited to help watch Ivy so Matt and I could pack together. (Matt once got snippy at me wondering why I didn’t pack while I was watching Ivy so I made him try it. The experiment ended with him exacerbated and begging me to watch Ivy so he could get something done. Vindication!)

It was night and I was walking my sister to her truck to say goodbye. I marveled that by the end of the month I wouldn’t be in New Mexico anymore. I heard a sort of sobbing snort and turned to find my sister had completely dissolved into tears.

Yeah, that just felt awesome.

I love my big sister. She loves me and completely adores Ivy. She loves dropping by on her days off and we just hang out. Either shopping and lunch (Cheesecake Factory) or just cheap pizza and YouTube videos. She’s my best friend and I don’t think I realized how much she’s going to miss us. Or how much I’m going to miss her.

Matt has to start his job this week. With no house and not even everything here packed up yet, there was no way we could go out with him.

So Matt left to Minnesota by himself this morning.

I am so so scared for him and my heart aches so strongly it feels like my whole body is made of lead.

I don’t have the words to properly express how scared and on edge I am. I won’t get to see Matt again until Red has a full time job and we get a house.

I hate that I can’t get a full time job. I hate that we don’t have money for childcare and that the thought of being away from Ivy full time makes me panicky and anxious. I hate that we have to rely so thoroughly on Red right now and that so much pressure is on him right now.

He says it’s fine though. That we’ll figure it out and there isn’t any resentment because well, he needs a job. That’s just how it works.

I know it’ll be okay. I know it’ll work out in the end. I know that Matt will stay safe and that if everything goes well I will see him again in about 2 weeks; by the end of August at the latest.

Maybe I’m just being a brat but I want it to be okay right now.

I’m just laying in bed, typing this and looking at Ivy’s sleeping face. She’s gonna wake up with Matt miles and miles away and she won’t get to see her Dad again until we get this all sorted out. So I have to be sure to do my best to get everything sorted out. For her sake.

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Procrastination is an Art

Things I Have Been Doing Instead of Packing:

Knitting

Playing Hearthstone

Panicking about how much we have to pack

Keeping the baby out of the half packed boxes where she likes to pull stuff out by the fist full because, “Weeeeee! I’m helping!”

Feeding the baby

Feeding myself

Having silent panic attacks as I stare off into space

Trying to calm Matt down from his own panic attacks

Wondering if Red is still gonna be able to help me pack cause he said he’d be home all day today but he’s been missing for hours now

Trying to put the baby down for a nap

Panicking some more

Trying to figure out when I’m going to see all my friends before we have to go

Leaving voice mails on landlords’ phones because LET US RENT A HOUSE. WE NEED A PLACE TO LIVE

Having anxiety induced diarrhea

Picking at my skin obsessively

Reading other people’s blogs

Writing this post

My Moment of Victory

Let me set the stage for you: It was evening. I was at the computer, playing Hearthstone. Matt walks in to chatter with me about something or the other. He holds Ivy in his arms.

Suddenly, mid-sentence, he stops and says, “Oh that’s a whole lotta nope.”

I follow his upward gaze to see a spider about the size of a silver dollar on our ceiling. It is skittering around and getting wearily close to being just above my head. I jump out of my chair and move away from it.

“We need a broom,” I said. Matt looked at me in disgust.

“A broom? Are you crazy? That won’t kill it. We need something else.”

I look around frantically as the spider does what looks like the samba over our heads. An old sketchbook is at my feet. Perfect. I pick it up and look at Matt pathetically.

“I can’t reach it,” I whine. “Can you kill it?”

Matt is a super weenie about spiders. Pretty much any other sort of creepy crawly thing he can handle but he would just as soon set his car on fire than voluntarily kill a spider. He doesn’t outright laugh at my question but I can tell he wants to.

“I don’t have something to stand on.” I try once more to get out of this. Spiders don’t scare me as much as they scare Matt but that doesn’t mean I like killing them. Especially when they’re ginormous and right over my head.

“I can get you a milk crate,” Matt says dryly. Well, this is it. Guess I’m stuck killing this behemoth.

I carefully position myself, lethal sketchbook in hand, under the spider. I jump upwards, thrusting the sketchbook towards the ceiling at my full strength (e.g. “sponge”) and it hit the ceiling (and the spider) with a tremendous THWACK!

I jumped backwards just in time for the sketchbook to plummet down, leaving the dead body of the spider dangling by one smushed up leg. A second later, the body itself fell, landing somewhere on the brown carpet.

“We should probably pick that up,” I said.

“I’ll get you a tissue,” Matt said with a quick turnaround.

My hero.

Rising in the Ranks

Okay. Okay, okay. I *might* be ready to talk about the moving thing without freaking the fuck out now.

I’ve lived in New Mexico all my life. Like most kids who grow up in one place, I HATED New Mexico while I was growing up. It’s so hot out all the time. Autumn, my favorite season, doesn’t really exist here. Summer just sort of steam rolls through until November at which point it starts cooling down. Then Winter makes a brief appearance and is done by February. It’s great if you love heat more than cold which I? Do not.

We have very little green here. The heat and general lack of rain fall means most plants out here are desert-y. And we’re not full on desert. I grew up in the northern part of the state and it’s not as bad there. Living now in Albuquerque is more desert like because the Albuquerque valley is on the edge of the Chihuahua Desert. Any further south than here and there is nothing but flat, dry, empty nothingness.

My favorite lack of green story was when I was flying back to Albuquerque in high school. Tourists on the plane ahead of me were excited to visit but the husband asked his wife why there wasn’t green down there. It was April so anywhere else it would be a valid question. His wife said something about it still being Winter so it would be green soon. Being a jack ass high schooler, I laughed audibly before explaining that it definitely wasn’t winter anymore and that was as green as it gets.

As I got older, however, I began to have appreciation for this place I call home. We have enormous skies. Anywhere I am in this city, unless it’s in very specific locations, I can see the sun set. The balloon fiesta every year is gorgeous. I never go to the actual like, events held in the park (because early and cold and crowds) but it doesn’t matter. I live near the north-east heights and any time I had to drive on Tramway I would get to see hundreds of balloons dotting the skies. It is a unique sight that I won’t get to see anywhere else.

The chile, I am going to miss the bajeezus out of. I know I can order Hatch green chile online now and have it shipped wherever, which is the only thing keeping me afloat right now. The general culture and atmosphere here is also unique. Eating posole at Christmas, seeing the farolitos twinkle around people’s houses… I’m going to miss being invited to feast days at the pueblo, where we go from relative to relative, eating and eating and eating until you can’t anymore. These are things that I didn’t realize were super unique to New Mexico until I started talking more with people not from here.

But all of those fun memories aren’t enough to change some unfortunate facts about this place. Have you ever seen the various lists compiled by different organizations, focused on child welfare and the like, that ranks the states of our union (including D.C. as its own separate thing) from best to worst in terms of raising children? They weigh different aspects of the state, like healthcare, education, affordability, median income, things to do as a family, etc. and all of those factors together determine the rank that state has on this list.

This year? New Mexico was #51.

Dead last.

The WORST place to raise a child in.

As a teenager, I never cared about this statistic but I am a mom now. I care very much about this statistic. Granted, New Mexico hasn’t always been last but the highest I’ve ever seen it is #48. That’s still… Really, really bad. That’s not where I want to raise a family.

Minnesota? Why, they came in #4 this year. In fact, over the last three or four years or so I can’t remember ever seeing them place lower than #6 on the list. That is fan-fucking-tastic. That is a leap in quality I can get behind.

There are a few other things that made us choose Minnesota. We didn’t just stick our hands in a hat of papers and choose randomly, I swear! But this fact is the biggest one. We are going from #51 to #4. It is a 1,200-ish mile move and we still haven’t found a place to live in yet. As scared as I am, I just have to look at Ivy to remember why I wanted to do this in the first place.

 

FREAKING OUT

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

*gasp*gasp*

AAAAAAAIIIIEEEEEEEEEEAAAHH

*gasp*gasp*gasp*wheeze*

Okay, okay I think I’m done screaming for now. Though I totally reserve the right to scream more as warranted.

Why the screaming? Well, Matt just got a new job. It pays well, full time hours, not at all crummy or anything. Sounds good, right? It is good. It’s in Minnesota. In Bloomington. Like, 1,200 miles away.

We’re moving.

It’s real.

I’m finally getting out of New Mexico.

Oh and the start date? Two weeks from now (so August 2nd).

Right. Back to the screaming.

AAAAAAAARRRRGGGGHHHHHH

Trying to Be Me

I’m beginning to understand why so many blogs turn into mommy blogs after the author has herself a baby. Freaking nothing happens in your life anymore! And yet your days are so busy and full that you have no time for anything anymore.

It’s the same sort of phenomenon when you bump into a friend you haven’t seen in ages and they ask what you’ve been up to the last three months. Your face scrunches up as you struggle to quantify where all your time has gone when all you have to show for it is your totally alive child and yourself, also alive. It’s something that can be difficult to understand if you’re on the outside of it but kids fucking eat time and shit broken ambitions.

And I guess I should say that I do love my life. I love Ivy to death and will go psycho bear mama bitch on anyone who hurts my baby. I don’t regret where my life is in the slightest, I just miss being able to do stuff not constantly centered around my kid without needing coordinated helpers.

(None of this is meant as commentary on what anyone else does. You live your life however you want, I honestly don’t give a crap. I’m just talking about my own feelings about my own life and no one else’s life. To quote Markiplier, “You do you and I’ll do me. And we won’t do each other. Probably.”)

This all came into my head as I sat down to write something (trying to keep my ambition going!) and I couldn’t think of a single half interesting thing from my life that didn’t involve Ivy.

I never set out to be a “mommy blogger.” The title is a perfectly respectable one and I have a few mom blogs I would die without. The only reason I never wanted to be one was because it always seemed like there were posts they felt they couldn’t do because the subject didn’t “fit” in with their other posts. They inadvertently wrote themselves into corners. And I want to be able to write about any blessed thing that comes into my head without having to give a shit about whether it’s what I’m known for writing or not.

And so here are some random bullshit thoughts that I want to talk about that aren’t long or cohesive enough on their own to make a full post. Enjoy!

If you’re of the sort to watch anime (or any animated show) you should give My Hero Academia a shot. I know it’s been out for a little while now but hey, I’m old, I can’t keep up with anything anymore. It’s set in a world in which 80% of the population has some sort of special power, called quirks. Not all quirks are created equal and those with stronger quirks are heroes. Think like a superhero show but EVERYONE has a power and it’s awesome. Our protagonist is actually quirkless but he wants to be the greatest hero of all time. Super enjoyable.

I’ve always had like, hobby ADD in that I find a hobby, work on it a lot and then dump it for 6 months while I pursue something else. My latest venture is an attempt to try embroidery. I blame Erika Moen. I’ve always been a fan of her comics but I started looking at her Instagram and saw all the gorgeous needlework she does and was like, “Hey! I wanna try that!” I already have a bunch of thread that I have from cross stitching so I just got a little hoop and some cloth. It’s coming along pretty well the only problem is I decided to try to do a dandelion floof on top. When I couldn’t figure out how to make it look like not-ass I googled it and saw dandelions that either looked like pro level, way beyond my skill, or looked like total ass. I’ve already redone the stupid poof like 4 times to try to make it look less sucky and it still sucks but now I don’t even care and I just want it to be finished but I do still secretly care so I just quit working on it until I have the energy to fix it AGAIN. This is what I get for being so obsessive.

I never used to have a sweet tooth but recently I have had a crazy out of control one. My biggest weakness? Oreos. I eat them by the fucking sleeve; just plop those suckers in a bowl of soy milk and eat it like diabetes cereal. I should probably definitely cut back.

Matt bought me the remastered Skyrim for our Xbox One for Mother’s Day and I learned how to play with a sleeping baby on me. Its not even fair how addicted to that game I am.

I’ve been helping a deceased friend’s mother go through all the stuff he left behind after he lost his life to suicide last August. He was a really good friend I hadn’t talked to in a while and losing him was a horrendous shake. He loved buying and collecting books, tv shows, anime, manga and video games. Helping his mom go through the 40-some odd boxes worth of stuff he left behind has been therapeutic and also one of the hardest things I have ever done. I miss him every day and got a tattoo in his memory. (It’s a little d20 with his initials underneath.)

I recently remembered a band I used to really like but hadn’t kept up on. That band? Tupperware Remix Party. If you love 80’s inspired bands that are just insanely good at rocking and being funky then you definitely need to check them out. Their collaborative work with Ninja Sex Party is also really awesome and I’ve been listening to The Hit for like five days straight now.

 

Blogkeeping

You may have noticed I’ve been a lot more active on here lately. Part of it is that I realized I’ve been writing on this blog in some capacity for the last two years. Which, yeah sounds impressive until you look back and see the multiple month long dead zones when I just couldn’t bring myself to write anything. There are various reasons for this not that anyone cares.

But lately I’ve been missing writing. Like just the actual process of it. And anytime I read other people’s work I always get this sort of throaty ache like, I want to be making content like this! And then my brain goes, “Then make it! You might not be as skilled as that person right now but guess what? Sitting on your thumbs, twiddling your ass doesn’t help you improve. If you want to be a writer, then WRITE.”

So I’ve been writing. And unlike before I’ve actually been writing on my phone (not my most favorite thing) when Ivy falls asleep on me. Because let’s face it, having the baby be asleep is primo writing time. It’s just that usually when she falls asleep it’s while nursing and/or cuddling and it’s hard to extract myself. Sure if I tried a little harder I could get away but I often find that I don’t want to. I like cuddling with Ivy and having a chance to just lay in bed and read on my phone. I know these days aren’t gonna last much longer and I want to enjoy as much Ivy cuddles as I can. But now that I’m writing on my phone I’m no longer hindered by my weakness for Ivy cuddles. I can write and schedule posts without even having to get out of bed.

Writing on my phone is part of why the recent deluge of posts have been a little on the short side. I type until the post looks long enough and then I’m like, bam, done, this is totally long enough! And then WordPress is like, that’s a nice little 200 word post you got there. So yeah, 200 words looks a lot bigger on my phone. (And that’s not the only thing that looks bigger on here too! *nudge nudge* *suggestive wink* Okay I’m done.)

Having an outlet again has been refreshing. I’ve been scheduling posts to sort of make a buffer for when this font of creativity dries up and I find myself struggling to come up with any sort of cohesive thought or subject. Hopefully when the inevitable writing famine hits, caused by either lack of trying, life interference, or just plain old laziness, it won’t be six months long again. No promises though.