Many many things are going on in the weird little world that is my life. I've begun the first class towards a second master's degree that I don't really want, but I DO want the job I can get with it. In about 3 weeks Bess is beginning 6th grade, Lightning is going into 1st grade, & Dare will be in kindergarten. The house we own in New Mexico has been empty sine January 31st, so coming up with an extra $600 a month is JUST A LITTLE BIT STRESSFUL.
On a completely different subject I had a bit of an epiphany a couple of months back. My mother in law (otherwise known as the bane of my marriage, and the borg queen) had requested to come out & pick up the kids & take them to her house (10 hours away) for two weeks. And she also wanted to come back out & get them a second time. Cuz a 10 hour trip is no big deal to her, but 2 out of the 3 kids get car sick and this seems to mean nothing to her. Anyhow, this all came about after I emailed extended family members to let them know we wouldn't be journeying to KY this summer for budgetary reasons (see above note about stress.) After blinking a couple of times at my husband's recitation of his mother's wishes, I told him that she wasn't physically capable of caring for all 3 kids by herself for two weeks. Or even 1 week being that she was 10 hours away & had no access to their medical care since it's through TRICARE & you have to be a military sponsor to access it. Surprisingly, he agreed with me. However....he was unable to actually TELL his madre that he didn't think she could care for the kids without anyone else's help. I spent about 2 months being flat out pissed off at him. Because these are his kids and he should be putting their health and well-being first. Then I got tired of being pissed off all the time. So I sat back and had a mental conversation with myself about my husband and his dysfunctional relationship with his mother. It went kind of like this:
Okay self, I'm tired of being angry. What other ways do I have to think about this? Well...I do have all that fancy counseling knowledge I could pull from. So...if I had some random dude come in off the street who was having a similar issue what would I tell him? There's always the reframe method....instead of thinking that the dude won't talk to his mother, we frame it as he can't talk to his mother. He just never learned how to and was conditioned for years to never question his parental unit. So...how do you work with that?
And that reframe helped me to not be so damn angry. I began to suggest different things that the husband might use to address this issue. While he didn't really use any of them, it helped me to feel more productive and less apt to bean him upside the head. After talking to his brother (who in true dysfunctional family form didn't think there would be any problem with the 60 something grandmother who has a heart condition looking after 3 very active children for 2 weeks all by herself) the husband finally had a phone conversation with his mother. He had procrastinated as long as he was allowed to. We had agreed on a deadline he had to talk to her by or she didn't get the kids. I have no idea what he actually said to her, but she firmly disagreed with his concern for her ability to take care of the kids and never acknowledged there was a real cause for concern.
So after all that (that particular problem was solved by having the husband go with the borg queen so the kids would survive the week with her) we had to deal with a lack of planning on his mother's part for the month of August. Everyone else who wanted to spend time with us had already contacted us. Not his mother. Cuz why would she want to ever do something like contact the people she was supposed to be visiting and let them know when she'd be out? NOBODY does that. :-/ So...after dealing with the latest debacle of finding out she'll be staying at my home in 1.5 weeks cuz she can't afford a hotel, I made a suggestion. Deadlines work well for the son, so I suggested we use them with the mother. If she wants to come and visit us, she needs to let us know by the deadline we provide. Or she doesn't get to visit. Cuz I'm tired of waiting to see what she's going to do instead of just making normal plans to do things with my family. And it's stressful waiting on her decision. So that's the plan from this point forward. It'll be interesting to see how the follow through goes.
I'll be taking our 11 year old cat Rowan to the vet tonight. The irony of taking a possibly ailing feline to emergency vet services on #nationalcatday does not escape me. I'm ready to get off the roller coaster for a bit...