Tag Archives: sad

Mean Girls 101

Mean girls sadly are nothing new and I feel like they are digging their claws in at younger and younger ages.

The other morning I am getting ready for work and I look at my bathroom mirror and notice a message:

“You are awesome

You are strong

Be you

Don’t let them get to you, be strong”

I winced and finished getting ready for work. I share a bathroom with my 11 year old daughter. I certainly didn’t write that on the bathroom mirror. Truth be told I can barely reach that high.

I made a mental note to talk to her about it.

G has been dealing with them for a few years now, but now that she is in middle school it seems much more hurtful. There’s intent to harm. I wish I didn’t understand but I have been dealing with mean girls since forever.

I could give you the examples but then I’m just continuing to give them power. At the end of the day that’s what this is ALWAYS about when someone hurts you.

Power.

On our weekly drive back from her Dad’s I asked my daughter what was going on.

There is a girl in her class who just simply doesn’t like her. She’s pretty sure all paths lead to a boy she likes. Geez, doesn’t it ALWAYS?! Not really, but man…

She said this girl always makes sassy comments towards her and in front of others and essentially bosses her around.

I asked her what she does in turn. Nothing she tells me. I just keep quiet or do it.

What I tell you all next may cause some of you to scold me.

I said “don’t do that.”

“What”

“Don’t do that G. What do you want to do?”

“I want to scream at her and call her names. Can I swear?”

“No and definitely don’t do any of that. She wins. She wants to be in charge.”

“Then what do I Mom?”

“This stuff she’s telling you not to do, are the teachers ok with what you’re doing?”

“Yes”

“Well, f#*# her then.”

“Mom!”

“The next time she says anything. Calmly look at her and say the teacher is fine with what I’m doing why aren’t you? Can you do that?”

“Yes.”

 

Flash forward to this morning and I notice on G’s wrist a heart with the words: live, laugh, love, be you.

“Baby, is that girl still being mean to you?”

“No.”

“G?”

“She gave me a hard time in class yesterday…”

“And?”

“And I asked her “didn’t she have a project to work on instead of bothering me.”

“How’d that feel?”

“Good.”

“So why the ink?”

“So when she’s picking on me I can remember…”

I know it’s hard for G to share. She hates worrying anyone. I made sure to remind her she doesn’t have to talk to me but it’s incredibly important she talk to someone. I told her I understand. I am dealing with mean girls even now. It feels not great and as easy as it is to get angry that is their fuel.

I didn’t tell her what I’m about to share with you. When I was younger I just let it hurt me. I took it. I lamented. I became small. I assumed it had to be me. Something about me triggered this response.

I had a fantastic mentor share with me when I was dealing with a particularly vicious workplace mean girl that they are that way to EVERYONE.

I’m not special. However, in that moment it feels so awful you don’t think that way.

So I took a step back. I watched said mean girl in meetings. Paid attention to how she wrote her emails.

Yup. It was her. I was not SPECIAL. Lol.

And to be honest that to this day makes me feel an incredible sense of pity for her. What in your world is so bad to make you lash out like that?

As I replay all my mean girl run ins that is the tape I try use as background music.

I’m not saying I’m over it.

I’m saying it doesn’t stil sting a bit.

What I am saying is I’ve taken the power back. Or at least I try to.

I still want to bubble wrap G and it pisses me off that she’s dealing with this.

But… here’s the thing, I love her to pieces and am going to remind her every minute how fantastic she is. I hope she can use that as her force field or at least as a mini reminder when claws come out.

 

Before I forget- you’re all pretty freakin fantastic  Mommas

<3 Caprise

Holiday Realness

I’m sitting writing something I wasn’t going to.

My sadness at being without G during the holidays.

It is the reality of being a single parent during the holidays. It’s a choice you make. It doesn’t make it any less hard.

On everybody.

Luckily we have gotten G to a place where she revels in multiple meals, knows Santa will find her and cherishes her different traditions.

Don’t get me wrong it’s not all lollipops and roses and my anxiety raises starting in October, because I know it means behind the scenes I have to start holiday negotiations and frankly it’s awful. It just is.

I try really hard to keep my chin up,but this year in particular I fell on my face. My chin dragged on the floor the minute I called her from my office to say goodbye. Knowing I wouldn’t see her for the next few days.

Truth bomb when she is here typically we are in the same room on our respective electronics, but she’s HERE.

It’s especially lonely when you’re alone. I don’t have anyone I go home to. OK, my golden doodle and while he is majestic…it’s not the same.

While at work I watched as the families are excited about plans with loved ones. Running errands at Target, families stuffing carts. At my favorite wine shop where I got two bottles of wine, couples making negotiations about how Thanksgiving is going to go.

So I wear a lot of waterproof mascara, try to stay away from social media and keep to myself.

Pro tip: maybe John Mayer’s song Stop this Train, while an absolutely beautiful song should be avoided. You may burst into tears. In you car. In the Target parking lot.

Here’s the thing, G needs time with her Dad and his family. It’s so important to have those traditions and I wouldn’t dream of taking that time away. But this is the same guy who lets her stay up late and thinks pizza is a food group. So I worry. I miss her. I get lonely. As much as people say the holidays are hard for people and be compassionate, when it’s in their face it isn’t as easy to deal with as they post on Facebook. Sadly those are things you find out as a single parent. Not everyone is here to hold your hand. Friendsgiving invites are few and far between.

I think it’s harder this year for me because she’s hitting an age where she needs me less. Which will DEFINITELY be a blog for another day.

I’m a pretty independent person but I’m human.

“I have a happy personality with a heavy soul. Sometimes it gets weird.”

However, I am lucky. I have some people I can reach out to. Which as a guarded girl I still struggle with. Here’s the thing being sad doesn’t make you weak, it makes you human. So last night I poured a glass of wine, and chatted with one of my favorite fellow single Moms. I set some boundaries for myself. I had a good cry.

I snuggled with my majestic doodle. I let myself be sad.

The holidays are hard. Remember not everything is easy and that’s ok. You don’t have to be tough all the time. But maybe remember to let people in. Breathe. Share. I know it’s hard.

Let people love you. Let people hold your hand. Find the people you can chat with at 1030 at night who let you swear like a pirate, cry and make silly promises.

Give yourself a moment.

You got this Mama.

I believe in you.

~~Caprise

Single Mom of the amazing Dbl G
Teacher
Sometime DJ
T-shirt collector
Henry Rollins Middle Aged Punk Prom Date

Living Through 9/11 This Year

9/11…Today is the day my mother died. I am the daughter of a single mother and a single mother myself. My mother died going to work early on the 99th floor of 1 WTC to learn PowerPoint… a skill I refuse to master.  Call it petty, but it’s deeply ingrained in my psyche. Walk in my Louboutins and then talk if you feel the need.

The hardest part of today was deciding not to take my 12 year old son to the memorial services in NYC. I realized,after much wine, that I wasn’t ready to put another human through that pain. I put on a good game face most years, and hope to put one on again today, yet with our politically charged environment, may not be fully possible.

I lost everything when I lost my mom. When I say everything, I lost all facets of family I thought I had. “Aunts and uncles”, “family friends” etc who thought I wasn’t grieving properly or who I didn’t contact because I didn’t know how to say I needed someone, or didn’t want to be alone for whatever the next holiday. I live my life with my son wanting to give him something better and failing as compared to my mom, but realizing that at least I am giving him a truth. A truth that was lost to me. I needed to be loved, even if I buried my pain in donations and dollars and the future, those were easy things to distract me from the pain. Today I mourn the loss of a friend back to a country that has become her home more than the US, and that I was too selfish to take my advantages to spend time with her when I could.

This is not my best post but it is my story of what it means to be a survivor 17 years later and may well evolve over the next few days.

~Electra

Memory Triggers

Memory Triggers

Memories can be triggered anytime and by anything ….. a song, a date, an event. Sometimes you anticipate when a memory might be triggered and sometimes it can totally take you by surprise.

A couple weekends ago, I surprised my daughter by telling her about an upcoming birthday gift from her dad and I, a trip to NYC and tickets to see Serena and Venus Williams play tennis at Madison Square Garden. It’s something she’s been hinting about for weeks and she was very excited. The interesting part is, after I told her about the trip, I went to run errands with my younger daughter and in the car, tears came to my eyes and memories started flooding back about the last time we saw the Williams sisters play.

It was years ago in Cincinnati; the whole family had gone to a tennis tournament there. During the trip, there was an incident with my then husband that started me questioning what I was doing with my life and marriage. A week later, my older daughter and I went back to Cincinnati after her coach gave her a ticket to watch Serena Williams play in the semifinals. I normally didn’t like to travel alone, but I felt the need to take her instead of him taking her. Looking back, this was about a week or two before we decided to separate. The analytical side of me believes that the reason I fought to take her was because I needed to prove to myself that I could do it on my own; it was the encouragement I needed for what was to come in the near future.

For years before that, my husband would have discussions with me every couple of years about wanting to leave and “take a break” (Ross and Rachel, anyone?), but I always convinced him to stay and work through our issues. After the Cincinnati trip, he was away for a week on business and I started thinking about things differently. I used to be scared and nervous when he was away on business, but this time felt different. I was different. Instead of feeling fear, I started thinking about what it would be like to be on my own and feeling more confident in my abilities. When he came home from his trip, the same old discussion reared its ugly head again. But, this time, he was surprised by my response. If that’s what he wanted to do, then that’s what he needed to do. There was no convincing him to stay; I had had enough. I was 40 years old and I couldn’t keep having the same conversation all the time, with the same outcome.

About a month after this conversation, he moved out. The intention was that we would take a break and work on things, then he would come back. I think we both knew deep down even before he left, that this was most likely the end.

Everyone’s situation is different and what’s right for one person may not be right for another. In my case, although I never would have made the decision to divorce, I can say that it has changed my life for the better. It took me a long time to get to that way of thinking; maybe I stayed longer than I should have, but, for me, I needed to know that I had tried everything and my biggest concern was how it would impact my girls. It’s definitely not easy, but I feel more alive and confident than I have in years. To clarify, I am not one to take marriage lightly; divorce was not even in my vocabulary, but I do believe that both people have to be invested in making it work or it doesn’t have a chance.

I was shocked that this exciting surprise for my daughter brought up a wealth of negative memories from my past. Now, I have the opportunity to change that from a negative memory to something positive and exciting – a whole weekend experiencing NYC with my daughter for the first time.

As I said before, memories can come from anywhere. Like the song that my Zumba instructor sings sometimes at the end of the class during our cool-down that makes me cry every single time (maybe a little less now than before. Or the date that my dad died. Or the Super Bowl Sunday episode of “This is Us”. Or the date of my wedding anniversary. Or the date of my divorce.

It does get easier as time passes, but it continues to surprise me that even years later, the triggers, memories and emotions still keep appearing. I have to remind myself – it’s ok to feel whatever it is I’m feeling, as long as I don’t let myself wallow in it for too long. As I look back, the memories also help to remind me how much I’ve grown …. I can see the lessons that I’ve learned from my experiences, which can be hard to understand when you’re in the thick of things.

 

~Laxmi~

 

Follow her at her blog, https://onedesigirlsjourney.wordpress.com/.