Friday, we made the almost 3 hour drive to pick up Mini-Me from where we all lived up until 2 months ago. She decided when we moved here that she wanted to stay behind and try to make it there.
Mini-Me is 19, chronologically, but mentally and emotionally, she is not.
She is capable of holding a conversation with people she knows, but people that don’t know her can tell she struggles with basic social skills.
She is capable of working a job, but learning new skills, especially complicated ones, takes her longer. She is easily distracted.
She has a big heart, but it’s easy to take advantage of her. Easy to convince her you have her best interests at heart, even if you don’t.
At 13 she could not read, and even after working with her for years, she struggles, although she can read well enough now to sit down with a book — providing she can sit still long enough.
As she was growing up, we were aware of the challenges she faced, but it never felt like raising a Special Needs child, even though it was.
In so many ways, she was a normal kid. When she sat at the table coloring with Draco and jabbering on about the kinds of things little girls gabber about, she seemed normal.
When she stood at my elbow in the kitchen learning the art of cooking, she seemed normal.
When she came home from school, the victim of ridicule and bullying, she seemed anything but. When people talked her into things they knew she would get in trouble for, just so they could make fun of her, I wanted to go on a “Mama Rampage” and kick the asses of all the parents that raised bullies.
Leaving Mini-Me behind broke my heart and shattered my nerves in ways I wasn’t prepared for. I had to let her try though.
Bringing her home brought me comfort. To my nerves, to my heart and to my soul.
As I sit and look across the room to where she is sleeping, curled tightly in a ball with her kitty, Miracle, I am comforted.
Saturday, in spite of being completely exhausted still from Friday, we all climbed in the car and I took her out to see that there really was more to the world than the little country town we live in.
Our most important stop of the day was at the local Equine Rescuse that is run by our local branch of the SPCA. She got to see a few of the horses and applied for a volunteer position (that could possibly lead to a job some day).
Last night, they called her and she starts on Wednesday. She was beyond excited. They volunteer from 8am – 2pm during the week, so she plans to look for a regular job for nights and weekends so that she can do both.
I overheard part of a conversation she had with a friend last night and she was gushing about how “awesome” it is here and how happy she is. Again, her words were like a balm on my heart.
Having her home is healing something I didn’t know was broken. Yes, there has been some stress involved, adjusting to the added demands on my time and on our very limited resources, but it has been a happy adjustment.
I’ve come clean with her about the memory problems I’ve been experiencing and she’s seen how easily I can get overwhelmed at times, but she seems to be trying to make this work as much as we are, which is good.
Yes, I’m finding comfort in having her home with us, especially at the holidays. Life is damn-near perfect!
Not many people are aware of the reality Draco and I have been living. Most people don’t know all of our history, the things that have been said and done that no two people who truly love each other should have done.
Very few people know that while we still cared for one another and have continued to stay together, that our relationship lacked substance.
Fewer still are aware of how close we recently came to going our separate ways.
I have to admit that even though I knew I would always love Draco with all my heart, even I was on the verge of giving up. There has been something between us for years that neither of us could move past, each for different reasons.
I told Draco recently that I couldn’t live this way anymore. I needed closure of some sort, and so did he. We needed to move forward somehow. I was beyond caring how. I told him he had until the end of December to figure out what he wanted and to make something happen.
I have to be honest. I expected to start the new year heartbroken and alone.
I took him for a trip down memory lane, to the place it all began to go wrong, giving him the option of a different life. It was a gamble, and one I fully expected to loose. That was a few weeks ago now.
Last weekend, we spent the weekend at home. Just the two of us. It began quietly, neither of us saying much, but on Sunday, my world changed.
Draco had finally made a decision about what he wanted and I was shocked to find that it was me.
Sincere apologies were offered for things said and done years ago. We talked, really talked, for the first time in years. The beginnings of something new for us glimmered like an oasis in the desert. Hearts reopened to the possibility that we might not be done yet.
The last few days, I have been happier than ever. I’ve managed to loose weight without trying and can even see the difference in the mirror. Day to day struggles have seemed smaller than they used to be. Colors seem brighter, my “job” as a housewife seems more of a joy, knowing I’m taking care of a man that works hard every day to come home to me.
Draco seems happier too. There’s been real laughter this week as we’ve loved, played and acted silly to make each other laugh. He seems lighter when he comes home from work and has mentioned looking forward to the long weekend, eating lots of turkey and getting in lots of snuggles on the couch.
I’m happy to say that even my passion for sharing my life through my writing is returning, something I was beginning to fear I’d lost forever.
I’m in the process of changing the blog back to Phases of Me, where I actually got my real start blogging. I’m changing my blog identity to Raven Moon, and my style of writing may soon change to the voice I speak with in my mind instead of the voice my family told me was acceptable. These are things that have been pulling at me for some time now.
With Draco’s support and encouragement, I no longer feel the need to hide who I am from anyone. I know that, come what may, he loves and accepts me, and that’s all I ever really needed or wanted. The rest will find it’s way.
I hope that everyone considers the changes positive ones and chooses to stick around, but either way, I’ve got to be me.
Love and light,
I recently downloaded a book for my Android Kindle App called Hippie Witch: Magical Life by Tori Douglas and was so very impressed with how she lives her life. At the time I downloaded it, it was free. It is now $2.99, but it’s a price I feel is well worth it.
This book is another blogger gone published, and I have to say, even when I’m impressed with the blog itself or the blogger in particular, I don’t usually run out to buy a book if they publish one and I’ve never done a book review on any of my blogs. In this case, I found the book first, which lead me to the blogger instead of the other way around.
While this post won’t be a review either, I had to give credit to my inspiration for it. If you’re interested in looking up her blog, you can find her here.
What I would like to talk about is the impact her book had on me personally and why.
As you know if you follow the Fairy Phases fan page on Facebook, Draco and I recently (about 3 weeks ago) moved about 2-1/2 hours away from where we’ve lived the majority of our 16 years together.
It was where I was raised and have lived all but about 2 years of my life. It’s where the kids are, it’s where what’s left of my family is (other than my brother). Other than the 2 years I spent up north when I was in my early 20’s, it’s where I’ve always lived.
Leaving was such a mix of emotions. I was excited and glad to not have to be apart from Draco all the time, but leaving where you’ve lived over 30 years is hard. Since Mom died in June, though, my conviction to get away has been stronger than it’s ever been. I knew I had to go no matter how hard it was.
Moving has been a good thing in spite of my initial feelings and bouts with being homesick. We moved into the house we want to grow old in last week and I can’t remember when I’ve been happier or felt such peace.
Knowing we were totally on or own with no help has really put things into perspective as well and life has gotten really simple, really fast.
Most of our possessions, including the majority of our decorations and magickal supplies were put into storage and left behind and that added to the initial feelings of being severed from everything. I found myself thinking things like “how can I practice my religion without my things?” And “I don’t have half my stuff here, I can’t even cast a proper spell!”
After about the first week and a half, I began to remind myself that in the beginning, I had no tools other than myself. I didn’t run out on a magickal shopping spree either.
So, I told myself, we’re back to basics. We can do this.
I began to remember my earliest magickal training. The books I’d read that had warned about getting so caught up in the process and trappings that you didn’t live magickally. I remember thinking, as a young woman of 19 and new to pagan religions, that it would never happen to me.
Guess what I realized? It had happened to me.
When I first started as a Wiccan and Paganism was something I didn’t really know how to do, I went with my instincts and I stared out incorporating what I was learning into my day-to-day life, especially in my cooking and housekeeping. I used to make my own floor wash from orange peels to cleanse negativity out of the house each time I mopped the floor and when I cooked, I used herb associations, burned incense, listened to music and drank wine.
What happened to the witch that chanted to herself when she swept? That only stirred food clockwise unless there was something to banish?
What happened to sitting outside with nature without a phone in my face?
Where did my habit of saying good morning to the sun and goodnight to the moon go?
It was then that I realized that those were the things that had brought spirituality into my everyday life. I was no longer experiencing spirituality, I was simply practicing a religion; akin to going to church on Sunday simply out of habit and spending more time considering lunch options than listening to the sermon.
I knew it had to change, but 19 was a lot of years ago and the BOS (Book of Shadows) that held all that gathered information was long gone. I found myself frustrated and stumbling more than starting.
Out of frustration, I sat down with my Kindle App and determined to do what I’d done in the beginning. Read.
I’m a fan of Pagan ebooks For Free on Facebook, and I remembered downloading a ton of books on Tarot, herbs, gems and even healing, but wasn’t certain if there were any regular pagan books or not.
I started and stopped probably half a dozen books and had almost given up on finding the inspiration I needed to get back on track when I saw the title Hippie Witch in my archives. I immediately pulled it up and began reading and didn’t stop till I finished the book. I was truly disappointed when it was over and immediately craved more.
I remembered seeing something about her being a blogger and wondered if her blog was still up and active (so many pagan blogs sit neglected these days). I quickly sought out her blog and was thrilled to see a very recent post. I immediately became her
cyber- stalker newest follower and have followed her on Facebook and Twitter as well.
Her book is all about bringing the simplicity back to her craft. How she incorporates it into daily life and she also offers some very good information.
She doesn’t know it yet, but she became the inspiration I needed to find myself and my path once again. For that, I can’t express enough gratitude.
So, I am now on a voracious quest for knowledge. I am re-teaching myself and it is a beautiful thing, especially when the classroom looks like this,
How awesome is that?
This week while Draco is at work, Dutchess and I are going to spend some time in the graveyard at the end of the street honoring the dead for Samhain.
I may not know where this path is going to lead me this time, but I’m determined to enjoy the view!
Oh, and it looks like that writer’s block problem was a spiritual thing, cause, baby, I’m back!
)O( BB )O(
When we started all this moving mess Thursday, I would have never guessed that by Saturday night, we would be done.
Draco and I both hate moving and because of that, it’s usually something that gets procrastinated over.
The last time we moved, it took the better part of a month of days off to get it done.
When Draco looked at me yesterday afternoon and said we’d be done soon, I thought he’d bumped his head.
Sure enough, by 5 pm, we were pretty much done.
Having or own place again this weekend had been an experience. It’s been over 3 years since it was just us or just us and Mini-Me.
I can’t lie, our place is tiny and with three of us here and moving that fast, the house is like an obstacle course right now and the attic is about to burst at the seems, but I know I have the tools I need to get things under control. It’s just a matter of getting there.
I’ve realized this weekend that even though helping my parents was necessary, and I will be forever grateful for L and all she’s done to help us, that Draco and I just aren’t cut out for living with other people.
It’s not the other people, it’s us.
This little apartment made us both raise our eyebrows for a minute, but now that we’re here and getting settled in, it seems to be growing on us both. We’ve had a few moments of clear floors to see that once everything is put away, it will be fine.
I’m not kidding when I say we’ve lived in worse.
Our last place was an emergency move. We were supposed to be buying a house from a friend of a friend to keep her family home from going into foreclosure. She seemed so sincere and we trusted her, making payments through her to the finance company. It seemed like a perfect solution for everyone. Until I found out that the payments we were giving her never saw the finance company and that she was telling people we weren’t paying.
The fight that ensued was huge and ended with them threatening to call the police on me and Chicklet because I told her I was going to beat her ass and meant it and Chicklet nearly did.
In the end, the house was being foreclosed on quickly and we had to leave fast.
The only place we could find that would allow us to have our bulldog was an old hotel that had been converted (and I use that term loosely) into apartments.
It was in the middle of one of the worst neighborhoods in town and my bathroom and kitchen were one room. Not even kidding. It was horrible. We had no car at the time, so we didn’t have much choice.
Compared to that place, this place feels like a mansion!
Overall, L has taken us leaving better than I thought she would. I think it helps that we are just down the street from her.
Money will be tight the next few weeks as we begin the process of straightening things out here and all of our personal bills come due, too. Internet, other than on my phone, will have to wait a few weeks, so all of my blogging will be done via my WordPress app for now and I’m already in the grip of World of Warcraft withdraws.
Never fear though, I’m not going anywhere, especially now that I have my own place again!
I will leave you with a picture of my youngest granddaughter that I got to see this weekend. Can you believe those little chunky checks!!