Archive for February, 2011

Guilty?

February 23, 2011

I couldn’t sleep last night. I felt guilty. I don’t know whether it’s a Jewish thing or a mother thing. Catholics seem to have it too. I don’t remember being brought up with guilt. Did my parents use it on me? I’m not sure. It was just assumed I would go to college, get married, and have kids. My parents were aghast when I worked full time when my children were born. Well, I worked part time the first year of the first child. After that, full time. And I did feel guilty about that. I don’t know a mother who doesn’t.

My youngest son, who lives with me, totaled the new car I bought for him five months ago. Thank goodness no one was hurt! I did buy the gap insurance, but oh the tangled web among insurance companies. The accident was two weeks ago. It will take at least another ten days for everything to get sorted out and the loan paid off, minus the $750 deductible. Even though I had a rental car in my insurance policy, we had to give it back forty-eight hours after our car was declared a total loss. Who reads the fine print of the insurance policy?

We are a one car family. At least my son works within easy walking distance of home. Not that he’s walked yet. Why did I offer to drive him and pick him up? And when I can’t do it, he gets his girlfriend to do it. He does have to go to Mesa for random drug testing and his aftercare class in Gilbert on Wednesday nights.

My friend Sharon coaches high school girls’ basketball. She coached the freshman team to a 12-2 season. Now that it’s the playoffs, she’s on the staff of the varsity team. They’ve made it to the semi-finals. The game is tonight at Jobbing.com arena, on the west side of the valley about thirty miles from my home. I want to support her and go to the game. And it will be fun.

I’ll admit it; at first I tried guilt on my son. I told him I was going to have to miss the game to take him to his class. It didn’t work. Next, I asked him to find a ride to the class. He’s been giving other people rides for the past five months. That didn’t work as the people he gave rides still don’t have a car. The reason I got him a car is that it would take three hours each way to get to the class by bus.

Yesterday I asked him to ask his girlfriend to drive him. He’s working and has the money to pay for her gas. He hemmed and hawed and finally told me not to mention it to her. He doesn’t want her to meet the girls he knows through the class. That pissed me off, and I said in an even tone that he would have to find his own ride as I was going to the game.

When I picked him up from work last night, I asked him if he had found a ride. He said he thought one guy might give him a ride. When I suggested his girlfriend take him, and I pick him up, he agreed that he could go an hour early so she wouldn’t see his classmates. And I would be home in plenty of time to pick him up. (I know you’re thinking I’m a sap.)

Last night I had all kinds of dreams that he went to jail because he missed his class. Although this might seem ridiculous, he had his probation lengthened by two months because he missed one drug test. He went the next morning to test, to show that he had forgotten and that he wasn’t “dirty.” The drug court judge had the power to send him to jail for that, but he was “lenient” and added to his probation.

I know you are jumping up and down and saying that it isn’t my problem! My son needs to be responsible for himself. So is it guilt that I’m feeling? Or that I still want to control everything about his life?

I am going to the game tonight.

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Taking Care of Myself

February 15, 2011

Another Valentine’s Day and I’m alone. My second husband told me on Valentine’s Day 2001 that he had rented an apartment and was moving out. Since that time it hasn’t been my favorite holiday

I made sure to send valentines to a few single and newly single friends. And I got some from the same people.

On Saturday night I went to a party of people who were all friends of my good friend carol, who died a few years ago. Her husband is trying to make a new life for himself without forsaking her. It was bittersweet to see these people without the one person who provided the glue of our relationships. I left the party about 8:30 and decided to go to The Rhythm Room by myself. The Bad News Blues Band, from Tucson, was playing. I paid the eight dollar cover charge and went to the bar to buy myself my usual, a Michelob Ultra. The place was packed. There was nary a place at a table or the bar. The band was doing sound checks, and I positioned myself so I could see them clearly. A young man, not more than thirty-five, made eye contact at me and smiled. I smiled back and chuckled to myself, thinking what a blessing the low lighting of a bar is in disguising one’s age.

The band sounded great and although there were people out on the dance floor, there were plenty of people bopping to the music while standing around. I was one of them. I enjoyed an hour’s worth of live tunes. When the band took a break, I bought a two CD set and went out the door. It felt good to hear live music without worrying about asking someone to dance or being asked to dance.

The young man who smiled at me was outside sitting at a picnic table smoking a cigarette. “Leaving already?” he asked, sounding genuinely disappointed.

I told him I had stopped by to listen to the band but was calling it a night. I had a good time without wheedling a friend to accompany me.

Yesterday, on Valentine’s Day, I got my nails done and had a ninety minute massage when I got home I had a light supper of spinach and cheese sticks and dark chocolate. I got on my jammies and read The Lonely Polygamist by Brady Udall. It was a good time.

 

On the Prowl Again

February 2, 2011

Still on the Prowl

Neither of the dates I had recently worked out. One didn’t call me, after assuring me he would, and there was no connection or chemistry with the other one. So I’m back on the prowl. I’ve sent “winks” to guys on match.com but I haven’t been emailing anyone to start the process. Am I too busy? That seems like a cop-out. Am I too scared of more rejection? Could be.

I want it the easy way and that isn’t going to happen. I want to meet someone, have an immediate connection, and not have to play any games. My sister says it’s a numbers game. She went out with sixty-eight guys in one year before she found the one she’s with. I don’t know if I have that much stamina or will.

A friend of mine was emailing a guy she met through match.com. After quite a few back-and-forths he signed his name. She realized he was the guy another friend of hers had been involved with seven years ago! The fellow had bought a house with the friend’s friend, and they lived together happily for a year. Things started to deteriorate. She went back to the East for a long weekend. When she returned, the woman next door told her that she had spoken with the woman who spent the weekend in the house and had learned she was a prostitute and the fellow and she had done drugs together! Of course the fellow was thrown out, but the friend had to buy him out of his part of the house. My friend stopped emailing the guy immediately, knowing she had dodged a bullet.

I guess we all have war stories about the dating world. I guess that’s why I’m set on not remarrying or living with someone. I don’t think I could trust that much again. Then again, I’m a patsy for a good salesman.