Pages

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Mourning?

Looking forward to Bruce kept my mind preoccupied for the last week or so.  Now that its over, a sadness has settled into my heart.  My son is different.  He's not the person I thought he'd be when the drugs wore off and his real personality emerged.  I don't know if its just jail doing this to him, but it seems deeper.

He's distant.  He seems dead inside.  He doesn't smile.

Is this the real Keven?  I hope not, I really do.  I feel this ache in my heart - like I've lost him even though he's still here.

The drugs have been out of his system for almost 3 months.  I was hoping the old Keven would re-emerge, but who IS the old Keven?  He's been using drugs since he was 15, and addict since he was 17.  All of his behavior over the last four years I've blamed on drugs or the wrong meds etc.  But is this the real him?

I know he's in jail and that can harden you, I just hope when he gets out, he becomes a bit less aloof and distant.  He's not going to live with me, or his sponsor, he's chose to move into a sober living affiliated with the ranch.  I am thrilled by that because I don't want him around.

This is not how its suppose to be.  Parents are suppose to be proud of their children and look forward to spending time with them...at least that's what I thought it would be like when he got to this age.

Don't worry, I'll be okay.  I just needed to get this out of my system.  Seeing him today hurt.  I feel like I'm in mourning over who he could have been if he hadn't taken the detour into drugs (and who knows if he's done yet or not).

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Saturday, April 28, 2012

What Can I Say?

 \
Bruce was more amazing than ever.  At age 62 he has not lost an ounce of passion or energy.  The show was one that I will never forget, and after seeing him 28 times I admit that I can't remember all of them in detail, but this one I will.  



Back in the day when I was writing my music blog, I would have spent hours crafting the perfect review of the concert designed to give the FEEL of the night.  Since I know longer have an audience for that sort of review, I'll just say there were some intense emotional moments, and some moments of sheer amazement at his antics and energy, some sentimental moments and a few hard rocking moments (fewer of those than ever before...look at the set list, not a jump up and down and dance your ass off setlist, but excellent nonetheless).

My friend Nuel was amazed by the whole thing and having him there to hold on to and hug made it extra special for me.  

Highlights:

- TOM MORELLO (can't say enough about how much I love this dude, this video is not from last night but they did this song last night, if you haven't seen his unique guitar style, you're missing out, watch this!  Just skip to the 6:27 minute to be mesmerized).  No wonder this is Keven's favorite guitarist, and one of mine too.

- subtle yet POWERFUL tributes to Clarence throughout the night (and one obvious tribute that made me cry)

- "Darkness"

He also brought his guitar guy on stage because it was his 1000th show with him!  Here's a clip of that, plus the little girl that sang with him and - he pulled a little girl (4 or s0) out of the audience to sing a few lines of "Sunny Day" (see video here)

I admit, the setlist from the night before kicked ass compared to what we got, but I am not complaining.  He has a reason for everything he does.  

It's over.  Now I'll go through the post-Bruce blues for a few days.  I've been looking forward to this for three months.  Now...its come and gone.  That's the only downside to seeing my Bruce.

SET LIST:

Start Time: 8:41 p.m.

1. No Surrender
2. We Take Care of Our Own
3. Wrecking Ball
4. Badlands
5. Death to My Hometown (with Tom Morello)
6. My City of Ruins
7. Does This Bus Stop on 82nd Street
8. Jack of All Trades (with Tom Morello)
9. Youngstown
10. Prove it All Night
11. Darkness on the Edge of Town
12. Easy Money
13. Waiting on a Sunny Day
14. Apollo Medley
15. Racing in the Streets
16. The Rising
17. Lonesome Day
18. We Are Alive
19. Ghost of Tom Joad (with Tom Morello)
20. Land of Hope and Dreams
21. Rocky Ground

22. Bobby Jean
23. Born to Run
24 Dancing in the Dark
25. Tenth Avenue Freeze Out

End Time 11:43 p.m.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Friday, April 27, 2012

IT'S BRUCE DAY FOR ME!

OKAY PEOPLE, I AM TRYING TO BE SEMI-CALM HERE, BUT ITS NOT EASY AFTER SEEING LAST NIGHT'S SET LIST!

This may not blow your mind when you see it....but trust me, there are a few rarities in here and I can only hope and pray that he repeats most of these tonight.  In 27 times of seeing him he has NEVER played She's The one and Candy's Room back to back.  And this entire tour, he's ONLY started with WTCOF or WB and last night he started with BADLANDS!  Holy crap.  This is going to be an awesome night.

I don't mean to sound arrogant about California (you know its not my favorite state) but Bruce does love Los Angeles and he usually treats us to something special.  :)

AND TOM MORELLO WAS THERE FOR THREE SONGS.  (raise your hand if you know who he is, if not you can look here.  He's one of my personal favorite guitar players, and Keven's favorites because RATM is Kev's fave band - he's going to be so stoked for me and a bit envious).

I am so excited but already bummed that it will be over after tonight!

Start time: 8:22 pm
  1. Badlands
  2. We Take Care Of Our Own
  3. Wrecking Ball
  4. The Ties That Bind
  5. Death To My Hometown (with Tom Morello)
  6. My City Of Ruins
  7. The E Street Shuffle
  8. Jack Of All Trades (with Tom Morello)
  9. SOMETHING IN THE NIGHT
  10. Candy’s Room
  11. She’s The One
  12. Easy Money
  13. Waiting On A Sunny Day
  14. The Promised Land
  15. Apollo Medley
  16. THE GHOST OF TOM JOAD (with Tom Morello)
  17. The Rising
  18. Lonesome Day
  19. We Are Alive
  20. Land Of Hope And Dreams
  21. Rocky Ground (with Michelle Moore)
  22. CALIFORNIA SUN (The Rivieras cover)
  23. Born To Run
  24. Dancing In The Dark
  25. Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out end time: 11:02



Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Scooter Memories



When I was 16, my boyfriend Scott gave me a puppy.  We named him Scooter.  Scooter was the best dog ever.  I still mess him.  Here's a few memories.  Feeling nostalgic today.



 Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

4 Days Till Bruce/Keven Update

We see Bruce on Friday night. I don't know what excites me more - knowing that I will be having the time of my life on Friday night or introducing my friend Nuel to what a Springsteen concert is all about. If you haven't been to one - you're missing out. Its more like an experience than a "show". He's there WITH us and FOR us and we're all there together for each other and for him. You can spot the lookie loos in the audience that are a bit to above it all to fist pump their way through "Born to Run", but I've seen a lot of converts! 

Keven's sponsor called me yesterday (his mail got returned, he had the booking number wrong). During our conversation he told me that Keven would be able to move into one of the sober livings associated with the ranch ($450 a month! that's CHEAP! You can't find that in Orange County!) OR he could move in with HIM! His sponsor's roommate is moving out in June and he wants Keven to rent the room and said he may be able to help him get a job. The sponsor has lots of years, is in his 30's and Keven respects the hell out of him. I think this would be great. Anyone see a red flag with living with your sponsor? Please tell me.

 Speaking of Keven and Bruce:
Contrary to how it may appear due to the fact that he's in jail at the moment, I brought my boy up right!  He was indoctrinated with rock and roll at an early age, just like I was (my dad and I saw The Beatles together on Ed Sullivan when I was 4, the rest was history).  This photo is my proof.














Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Monday, April 23, 2012

Consistency

I would like some consistency in my emotions.  Saturday I was in a great mood, Sunday very depressed.  Today trying hard to get back to somewhere in the middle.  I did something impulsively Saturday night and I think that's why I felt depressed Sunday:  regret.  I think I mentioned the other day that I need a tattoo that says
"Respond, don't react" which to me means:  think about it first you fool!  Once again I reacted to a situation without thinking ahead to the consequences and now have live with the result.  I am so sick of myself in this regard.

In other news:

- I did not visit Keven this weekend

- This week my HS Sweetheart gets out of prison (again) and I may give him a ride because his mother passed away unexpectedly a few weeks ago and his father has dementia.  He's the only child and had no friends other than me.  Still trying to decide if I want to or not.  He hasn't even asked, but I think he will.

- Bruce is FRIDAY night.

- Worries of the day:  money, money and money

-  Grateful of the day:  Everything other than lack of money.  I tell myself that every single circumstance and event in life can be for the best, so not to fight it.  So much easier said than done.  But for the most part I've found this to be true.  I'm still waiting to see the positive in my son being a heroin addict, but for one, its made me a much stronger person.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Saturday, April 21, 2012

No More Dark Cave for Me

Woke up early this morning to the sound of birds.  We have a lovely yard with several birdbaths and feeders, so they like to hang out here.  Also in bird news:  A hummingbird built her nest outside our window.  We usually get to experience this precious site once or twice a year.  I wish I could get a photo, but it would disturb her so I won't.

I've been thinking about so many things lately.  One, about how good it feels to finally be taking care of myself again and living my own life.   Its amazing how deeply affected I was by all the addiction bullshit but I feel now like I've stepped out of this dark and disturbing cave and into the fresh air and sunlight.  I can't go back in there!  I just can't!

For YEARS I heard people tell me to "take care of me" and I had no idea how to do that, what it meant or if it was even possible due to my state of mind.  I tried to take care of me, but now that I'm really doing it, I can see  the difference!  I've detached.  Finally.

Of course this is all easy to say since my son is safely tucked away in OC Jail :)

What's most difficult for me right now is loneliness.  I wanted to be alone when I was upset and worn out from Keven's stuff.  But now I'm sitting here looking out at this beautiful day thinking "It would be nice to take a walk with someone, or do SOMETHING with someone."  I even have a certain someone in mind.  But I have to be patient.

I've never had a lot of friends, just a few close ones and my BFF just moved to the very top of this long state of CA.  I feel that the people I met on this blog (or my other blogs from the past) are some of the best friends I've ever had.  My friend, Sherry, in Georgia comes to mind.  I don't know what I'd do without her.  She's like a friend and the older sister I never had.

I guess I got off track.  The point is, I am a slow learner but finally understand what it means to take care of myself and detach from the horrific nightmare.  Hopefully if the nightmare comes back, I will be able to stay awake and not get sucked into it.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

And Don't It Feel Good?



 I'm in a good mood, can you tell :)

 Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

2 Years Ago Today

Here's what I wrote on one of my blogs 2 years ago to the day.  I think I've progressed from a hard-boiled egg to a rubber ball, now I can "bounce" along vs. being smooshed on the floor,  but I still have ups and downs:

April 18, 2010


Have you ever felt kind of fragile?  Not super fragile like an egg, more like a hard-boiled egg.  If you drop one of those they will crack or get a dent or something, but they will basically still be intact.

I feel like a hard-boiled egg lately.  Slightly fragile and kind of like I could "crack up" if I'm not careful.

My body is speaking to me - sending me singles that I am stressed, that I am putting my own needs last, that I am not doing what I need to do to be as pain-free and healthy as possible.

Its not uncommon for certain types of people to put themselves last.  Its hard for us to take the time we need to be good to ourselves, but in a way that's a form of selfishness if you realize that you're no good for anyone else unless you have the energy (mental, physical and emotional) to give.

So, I have to back off certain things.  I have to try and focus on the positive, surround myself with peaceful things, be careful what I watch on TV or read in the news, etc.  I take in too much (a curse of being empathetic) and it drains me.  Injustice, pain, sorrow - I need a break from that stuff for a few days.

But its weird because all of those things are so "in my face" everyday,  because I put them there.  I  CHOOSE to know about those things because they inflame passion in me.  I choose to be a sexual assault victim counselor/advocate; I choose to talk surround myself with addicts, parents of addicts, ex-addicts because those are the people I relate to and care about and want to encourage.

I don't know.  I just know I feel like I am standing close to the edge of something and I don't know if its good or bad.  I feel like I am not strong right now - like if Keven suddenly started using again, I'd lose it. I would just LOSE IT.  I cried several times this weekend for really silly reasons, but I know the tears were more like a warning:  you are in danger, you need to take a step back and get a grip and handle yourself with CARE.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

"I love you Mom, I'm sorry"



A certain someone just called, I took his call, he was cheery and happy and felt bad for his mood the other day.  Hmm.  I accepted apology and am ready to move on.

I think I need a new tattoo.  Somewhere visible where I will see it all times, I need some sort of reminder to myself that says:

RESPOND DON'T REACT 
(what pretty feminine thing says that?  I only do pretty feminine tattoos)

because every week I do this.  I get all riled up over something he says or does and then when the dust settles, I can see it more clearly and its usually not that big of a deal.  Mind you, I'm not saying being unappreciative and rude is not a big deal, but I know his heart and he usually is very appreciative.

I think when he's in jail he has a need to be a tough guy...not just on the outside, but internally to act like one in order to convince himself he can take it in there.  He's not a tough guy, that's why Anthony and he were such great cohorts, Anthony was intimidating and tough and Keven was approachable and easy going.


Sometimes I have to stop and remind myself that somewhere inside my son is the little boy who used to say the cutest things during his nightly prayers.  Here's something I read recently, cute prayers from kids:

"Dear God, I say your prayer every night, 'lead us not into temptation and deliver us some e-mail' but I never get an e-mail from you. Do you have my right address?"

"Dear God, my Grandpa says you were around when he was a little boy. How far back do you go?

"Dear God, is it true my father won't get in Heaven if he uses his golf words in the house?"

"Dear God, it must be super hard to love all the people in the world, especially my brother. I don't know how You do it."

"Dear God, if you watch in Church on Sunday I will show you my new shoes."

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Monday, April 16, 2012

Get On Your Horse and Ride

A wise man just reminded me to get on my horse and not let myself get trampled.  I was feeling very trampled all weekend because of a crappy jail visit with my dear son. I'm not giving it any more power so I won't share the details, lets just put it bluntly:  he was self-centered and unappreciative.   Well next weekend I'm not going.

Listening to the radio and Johnny Cash just came on singing "Folsom Prison Blues".   Who knows, maybe Keven will end up there someday.  :)   Ok, I should not have put the smiley face, but it made me feel better!

I really having nothing to say.  Just wanted to jump on here and let you all know I'm reading your blogs and not commenting much today.  Hoping and praying for all of us.  I'm glad I am finally learning NOT to put the focus on Keven....but it still takes a lot of effort some days.

Bruce Springsteen trivia:  His daughter, Jessica, is a national champion equestrian.  I love this photo of her and her horse, pretty amazing how perfect this jump was.





Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Friday, April 13, 2012

Happy Friday the 13th!

I feel LUCKY today and am not superstitious, just ask my cat:


This week was actually one of the best weeks I've had in a long time.  I'm learning things about myself and working to grow, which is not comfortable but rewarding; I had a phone call from someone special (trying not to read anything into it.  Wait - maybe I am superstitious because I'm afraid if I write about him it will somehow jinx it), I am getting back in touch with two old friends this weekend (one  by phone, male, one for coffee, female), AND last but not least, Keven got his sentence yesterday.

Talk about LUCK - he's one lucky S.O.B.!!!!!  (son of Barbara)

The usual judge was not there and he got a very fair and easy going judge who agreed to letting him do his state time in county and sentenced him to 16 months TIME SERVED because of all his credits!  So now he serves for the misdemeanor charge and gets out in JULY.  And to top that off, he's going to have INFORMAL probation!

I think its too lenient!  I am very nervous about informal probation - it means no accountability!  But if he does mess up again it will be state prison - no ifs, ands or buts about it!  And he will automatically have one year added to any new charge he picks up.  A drug charge is 3 years in state, so for him it would be 4.

I hope everyone has a really great weekend!

OH!  AND HOW COULD I FORGET TO MENTION THIS!   CHECK OUT MY COUNTDOWN TO BRUCE IN THE SIDEBAR!  2 WEEKS FROM TONIGHT!


Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Let's try this again....

Boundaries: When to Say YES, When to Say NO, To Take Control of Your Life
Has anyone read this?  Its old (1992) and I read it when it first came out because Henry Cloud was affiliated with the organization I worked for so he gave me a copy.  It became a bestseller.  I am going to re-read it.  Good stuff especially for co-dependent types like moi !


I took down my last post because I realize that as well as everyone knows me, things can see different in black and white than face to face.  Lou was right, that last post was a stream of consciousness, letting my thoughts flow.  But I don't think I need to flow all my thoughts all over the place :)

When I saw my therapist today he took me in a whole different direction and gave me some great insight.  He already knows about my past/men issues/overweight issues so we talked about what this resistance to change means to me and I had some good insight.

In the meantime I had a really good day.  I went to the mall because I had to return something and since I wasn't in a hurry I let every salesperson in ever beauty kiosk stop me and do their sales pitch which included:  a salt scrub and hand massage, having my hair curled, the latest greatest lipstick, and my nails got buffed.  I did buy something from the sweet young girl that curled my hair.  I walked out looking and feeling pretty darn good.

Then I still had time to kill before seeing Eric so I stopped at this little lookout over Dana Point Harbor and looked at the glorious ocean and felt the fresh air.  I take the ocean for granted and forget that most people don't have one 20 minutes from home.  I vow to go more often, it makes me feel alive.

I am not at all upset by any comments from the last post, I know you care.  I just say things that don't come out right and then think to myself "why did I say that!?!".  Its just me.

Tomorrow Keven has court - I'm pretty certain they will just hold if over to next week but I'll keep you posted.  Now to catch up on some blogs!!!!!



Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

What Jail Means To Me Today



Jail means peaceful days and nights and not having to worry as much.

I don't like the thought of him in there, but he's there for a reason, he broke the law.

AND FOR ONCE IT WAS NOT DRUG RELATED!!!  :)


The end.


(He'll be there for four months minimum up to 2 years.  I'll keep you posted.  In the meantime I'm focusing on me.  I'm struggling through some issues, not related at all to Keven :)

Monday, April 9, 2012

Wyatt









This is my great-nephew.  He and I bonded when he was about a week old :)  We lived near each other for five of his nine years and then his dad was stationed in Germany and now Texas (Army).

When he lived here we saw each other weekly, or more.  We were tight, Wyatt and me, everyone in the family recognized a few things about our relationship:

1.  You don't mess with Wyatt and Bar when they'e playing Legos, its serious building time
2.   If one of them is down, the other can make them smile
3.  They seem to have their own little world they go into that is full of secret jokes that leaves the rest of us suspicious that they are planning to take over the world
4.  They both giggle a lot when together

We also read a lot, talked a lot and watched a lot of animal videos on YouTube.  I shared one of our favorites.

He as visiting from Texas for the weekend.  He's growing up fast (he's 9).  I'm still his special person, but not so much as before.  Now he lives in his own little world, and invites me in, but I'm not part of it.  I worry a little bit about him because he's had some problems over the years and I believe his on meds :(  At such an early age.  But in his case, they may be necessary.

I hope you all had a good weekend, I sure did!

In other news:  Keven has court on Thursday for sentencing.  I'll let you know what happens.  I'm fine no matter what.

These are NOT REAL ANIMALS: Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Saturday, April 7, 2012

I've Said It Once, and I'll Say It Again and Again


I am blessed beyond measure by the people who read this blog.  

Reasons:

1.  I know there are many that genuinely care about me and my son.  You are willing to take the time out of your day to read here and to leave comments to support me and educate me and encourage me.

2.  Your wisdom, knowledge and experience.  So much helpful info in the last comments from right next door (Her Big Sad) to across world in the UK (Bugerlugs) and everywhere in between.

3.  Sometimes I feel embarrassed by my reactions and my lack of good judgement when it comes to Keven.  But I never feel that I am being talked down to (like some people in my life do to me) I always know that you people care enough to speak your mind and tell it like its is even when speaking hard truths.  I NEED AND WANT IT and can take it.

Thanks for the comments from yesterday.  Thanks for pulling me back on course.  Do I really need to pay my therapist when I have you guys?  :)  (yes, I do because we're talking about lots more than just my codependent issues).

Thank you doesn't seem like enough to say....but its all I got.

Well, I'm off to visit him and have a heart to heart.  He will be a captive audience in more ways than one :)

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Friday, April 6, 2012

HE'S GOING TO PRISON?

Just got off the phone with him, he said the convinced him to plead guilty to a misdemeanor because it would be the best options.  Then after he signed the papers they said they were going to revoke his probation and send him to prison for 2 -3 years.  WTF?

He was confused and didn't know what he was signing and they misled him.  Is this legal?

I'm not happy right now.


UPDATE:


We have a wonderful attorney that represented Keven when he picked up a new charge while in Recovery Court.  I called to get her thoughts and she said that by getting Keven to plead guilty, even to a misdemeanor, it means that his probation would immediately be provoked and he would have to do prison time.  He didn't understand this...I wish someone would have explained it more clearly or that he would have bought some time by saying he's not ready to sign anything.


The possible good news is that since CA prisons are crowded they are housing them in the county jails which means he'd be close to home, but they house them separately so he'd still be in with some serious gangbangers, and other violent aggressive types. 


She is going to see how little she can possibly charge us if we choose to hire her.  She can't promise much but she said she could try to get his time served in county, his parole be "to the streets" (whatever that means) and his sentence shortened.  


I'm just going to sit on this for a few days....


Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

New Day, New Attitude

I feel grateful today.

Thank you all for holding my hand and speaking the truth in love yesterday.  I needed it.  Of course my blog post was written 100% in a state of emotion, I always do that.  I write when I am upset then let the dust settle and later feel completely different.  Its just how I roll.  I don't really like rolling that way!  I have to work on it.

I explained to Kev that I will not be bailing him out, getting him an attorney or basically doing anything other than loving him and being here for him as his mom.  He was cool with that.  I tend to forget that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree - he was reacting in emotion and panic yesterday too, and once his dust settled he was calm (so far).  He has court today.

Here is part of what my therapist emailed me after my initial outburst about Keven's latest predicament, this may sound familiar because many of you have shared similar insights with me over the years and I've even shared similar insights with others (its so much easier to react in a healthy way when its not your own kid)


Kevin is not weak, he has proven, actually, that he is willing to go to great lengths to get what he wants, even to lengths that would seem insane to the average non-addict. While it is in no way unhealthy to experience a strong desire to nurture him, as he grows  this desire should be tempered with the emotional knowledge that proper nurture should be slowly handed to him. Your love should not change, but you might want to start having confidence in him. Often, the confidence he feels for himself will originate in the confidence you place in him, and you don't seem to have much. He obviously is capable of making decisions that get him in trouble, but he also has the potential to figure out what decisions could both get him out of trouble as well as keep him out.  


Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Back in Jail



Hello dear, wonderful, supportive blog friends.  The photo is not my wrists, but I sure could use those tattoos.

I have good news and bad news:

Good: He did not use drugs

Bad:  He violated his probation with a very serious charge against him

I don't want to write about it here.  If you want details you can email me.

In the meantime, please pray for a fair judge.  The cops who arrested him were anything but fair.  I want him to experience the consequences of his actions, but not to have to pay for pissing of the entire police department because the guy with him ran because he did not run.  It was a huge ordeal, the SWAT team was involved, roads were closed, it made the local paper (thankfully without his name in the article!).

Does it ever end?  I am grateful that I am growing and learning and handling things better, but it sure doesn't make it much easier on me.  Why is that?  I just feel SICK.  I need my boundaries, I need healthy thinking - I feel like I'm on the edge and I am very mad that once again his actions are affecting my life by making me have to work so hard not to feel horrible.  But I will STAY STRONG.

I just read a great blog post by my fun and funny friend, Linda.  Its about "helicopter parenting" (although she has her own colorful word for it).  I have to admit I am guilty of helping my son beyond what I probably should have.  I was never an over-protective parent when he was a kid, I believe in letting children feel consequences - I even spanked him for pete's sake!  But, drug addiction changed everything. It changed me.  It brought me to my knees and I parented from that position for years --- into his early adulthood.  I'm standing up now but feel weak in the knees.

Also - Larry left an extremely interesting comment on yesterday's post sharing his insights on men and male behaviors.  I'd love to hear some feedback on what he said.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Too True to Be Funny - Where are all the Normal Guys?

An article entitled "Where Are the Normal Men" by Natasha Scripture caught my eye this morning.  The author made her (very valid) point with humor, she's an engaging writer.  For me, it was very affirming because I've asked the same exact thing countless times over many years of dating.  Here's what Natasha and I both think after a weird date:
"Sometimes I have a reoccurring conversation with myself. This usually takes place after a particularly disturbing date, when I'm left suspended in disbelief.
It goes something like this:  Am I being too picky?   I then pause, reflect briefly, and always arrive at the same conclusion: Nope."
She defines "normal":  "By normal, I mean a well-adjusted individual with a grasp of social etiquette who has very little in common with your average psychopath."

I agree.  I am not looking for someone without quirks - bring on the quirks and idiosyncrasies!  I'm just looking for NORMAL. Like, he can carry on a conversation, does he use a napkin or wipe his hands on his jeans, can look me in the eye when he talks to me, does he have teeth and/or hair, does does he live with his mom and run a motel?   Actually, I'm not even looking.  But IF I were, "normal" seems to be a legitimate requirement, right?

Anyhow, she goes on to describe some of her dates.  I nodded my head in understanding and agreement as I read along.  Dang, she's had some real doozies for dates and a few almost exact replicas of MY PAST DATES!  Here are a few of my "where are all the normal guys?" dating experiences:

- The guy who asked me about STD's before we even entered the restaurant (so if I would have said I had one would he have just walked off?  Why didn't he ask on the phone?  Its a legit question but not the FIRST thing you ask --- or should it be?)

- Then there was a guy who was obviously very nervous, like he couldn't believe he had a date with such a normal and sweet woman :)   On our second date he brought me a gift (red flag - they're trying too hard or falling too fast or both). On that same date (the movies) as we exited the theater we ran into some of his friends and when he went to introduce me, he drew a complete blank!  He said "this is ??????"  We all stood there embarrassed.  HE FORGOT MY NAME.  I felt so bad for him.  I introduced myself.

- Of course there have been many men that make sexual innuendos and jokes all night trying to determine what you'd be open to in bed to make sure you are willing to do whatever their personal thing may be.  Really?  Basing a relationship on this alone?  Thanks for letting me know not to waste any more time getting to know you since you obviously don't want to know me (at least not out of the bedroom).   BTW, I am very open minded but that's not the point.  I do understand that for some men, this is the highest of priorities and wanting to know if there is sexual compatibility is a legitimate thing, especially if you have some unique needs (I'll spare you those details, but I've heard some interesting kinky stuff - on a first date!!!  ugh).  But most of these guys just wanted to make sure I was not a prude and liked to have lots of sex and the sooner the better.

-  Here's one of my all time favorites, I actually called someone from the restroom of the restaurant to come rescue me before the date was over* because I didn't want to be around this dude one second longer!

First of all, at the time I considered myself a Christian.  He was emphatic on the phone that he would not date a woman that was not a Christian.  We get to the restaurant and he brings a HUGE Bible in with him and plops it on the table.  I'm not talking a study-Bible, this was more like a family Bible you'd see on  shelf.
He proceeds to tell me that he has 7 children but wants at least 5 more and asks me how I feel about that?  (I was in my early 40-'s at the time).  Before I can answer he's taking photos out of the Bible for me to look at - all of his kids and his ex-wife (she was in every single picture, some of her alone no kids).  He told me she divorced him because he experienced love at first site while on a business trip to Hawaii and never came home, he thought it was unfair that the wife didn't understand that love at first site should be honored (ummm...dude....you're a Christian?  what about adultery?).  Then he went on and on about the woman in Hawaii.  I finally got a word in to ask what happened to her.  He said they shared his vision of having at least 7 more children but he discovered she was using birth control pills so he left immediately (he was still married at this time to his wife, mind you).  He came home to no wife, no kids and got on a dating site to find his true soulmate - which he then announced was very likely ME.  At that point I looked around for hidden cameras, since I didn't see any I excused myself to the restroom, called my sister and yelled "COME GET ME!".  I told the guy the date was over (I'm polite, I would never walk out on him) and he didn't get it.  He kept talking.  I paid my half and left, he tried to follow me but I escaped :)


*Normally I take my car on a first date but made an exception to the rule and regretted it immediately.  I never, ever let a guy know where I live or get in the car with him unless I feel 100% safe.

So, this is one of the reasons I don't date.  The other reason is that no one asks me out and I have no luck on dating the free dating site POF and am not willing to spend money to get on Match.com or one of those to go through the whole rejection thing.  Its painful.  IF I thought there were more normal guys out there, it would be worth the risk.  Until then, I shall keep smiling at Trader Joe's and the library and hope for the best.

Maybe tomorrow I will share about the most "normal" man I ever dated, and why I fell in love with him, and why it didn't work.

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Bruce: Lovers and Haters

UPDATE:  I left this comment for Syd and like what I said (lol) so I will share it here:

"I agree, Syd.  He has grown with the times.  You can watch him mature and grow older with each album...the early years, the family years, the changes in society, etc.  He's known as "the working class man's song-writer" and even though he certainly isn't one himself, he stays in touch with them, and actually cares.  He does a lot of philanthropic work too. No matter what decade it is, his always relevant."

If you've been reading my blog you know that I am a HUGE fan of Bruce Springsteen.  There's a phenomena that occurs every few years when he comes out with a new album and goes on tour.  I like to think of it as "the jealous idiots that have no clue" versus "the enlightened ones".   Also known as "music critics who love to hate Bruce" and "Bruce fans who are among the most loyal fans of any musician ever to live".

I find it comical, but will admit that I've gotten riled up in the past and even blasted the "music critic" that writes from my local paper who happens to dis Bruce every chance he gets.  They had my review of his review on the online edition of the paper one year and I felt like a celebrity myself :)

It you're reading this and you don't love or hate Bruce you probably think I'm a bit nuts or are at least rolling your eyes or hitting "next".  That's cool.  I just wanted to share a post that my buddy Peter Chianca wrote on his blog, because he said what I wanted to say, but he's a REAL WRITER so it sounds so much better!  There are hundreds of blogs and websites devoted to Bruce but Pete is the only one I read because if there's something to know, he's got the goods!  Plus, he's a legit nice guy.  So here in his words is how I feel:

"I will admit to a certain lack of objectivity when it comes to Bruce Springsteen. I discovered his music as a teenager, at that exact time when you’re ready for what’s coming out of your radio to be about something other than girls and dancing and pop fantasies – although definitely those things too.
Bruce fit the bill, and I’ve stuck with him ever since … and these days, I’ll admit there’s a certain element of nostalgia involved in my continued appreciation. (There’s something to be said for being made to feel 16 again, or at least the good parts of being 16.) But I remain faithful to Springsteen mainly because he still has something to say – he’s engaged in the world around him, his work and his sound continue to evolve, and at 62 he’s somehow still bringing it on stage, as he likes to say, “night after night after night after night.”
But I figure that even if he’s not exactly your thing, you have to respect his body of work, and his longevity, and his work ethic, right? There’s no reason to, say, revile him with the intense, burning hatred of a thousand suns. Oh, there is? My mistake.
Read the rest here: Hate won't do it: Making the case for Bruce Springsteen | Blogness on the Edge of Town http://blogs.wickedlocal.com/springsteen/2012/04/03/hate-wont-do-it-bruce-bashers-making-the-case-for-springsteen/#ixzz1r1VMZDau

AND JUST FOR KICKS: You have to watch this video! Last week Bruce pulled his (almost 90 year old) mother up on stage to dance with him during "Dancing in the Dark". Check out the smile on her face (uh, her outfit was a bit odd but who cares!  She's Bruce's MOM!)

Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara

Monday, April 2, 2012

Word Association - not always a good thing

I'm down with current slang terms and can carry on a conversation with a young person in their own lingo (which embarrasses the hell out of Keven, but I tell myself he secretly thinks I am hip).

But there is one term that I HATE, its so common:  "hit me up" as in "call me".

To me every time I hear that, I picture someone tying off their friend's arm and getting the syringe ready...  Its such a graphic image in my mind that I cringe when I hear it.

Ok, now that I made myself feel ill, I will share a few quotes to get my mind back on track (track...another heroin term....what is wrong with me today?  why is my mind going there so easily?)

A few quotes:

"I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody".
~ Bill Cosby

"I am not what I ought to be, not what I want to be, not waht I am going to be, but thankful that I am not what I used to be."
~John Wooden

"Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together".
~Vincent Van Gogh
(this reminds me, one of the library books I got the other day is a novel called "Leaving Van Gogh" but its written based on historic facts.  I've had a life long fascination with Vincent, to me he is a classic and tragic example of  several types of people - will write about that some other time).


Peace, Hope and Love, Barbara