New Traditions, AKA How to Navigate Tricky Relationships by Keeping Your Hands Busy

For the first time ever, my sister, mother, and I decided to do something Christmassy. 

Those of you who follow this blog closely know what an unusual thing it is for my family to do something usual, and what is more usual than sending out Christmas cards?

It’s been a rough couple of years for the ladies in my family. My sister and I battled in court for conservatorship over my mother to help effectively manage her schizophrenia. There have been lots of legal battles and hospital visits and yelling and police and yelling at police (it’s a whole story) and predictably, that has taken a toll.

But for the last twelve months, in an impossibly crazy, pandemic-y world, things have not been so crazy in our little world. Mom is safe, my sister and I have worked out a smooth schedule, and an eerie calm has settled over us. 

So when my sister called me the other day and asked if I wanted to get together to write out  Christmas cards this year, I accepted. It was such a normal thing to do.

Normal for other people, at least.

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My Year in Self-Care Purchases

Blue and gold shopping bag

You see, dear readers, when a clusterfuck and a shit show love each other very much, they get together and make something truly terrifying: the year 2019.

I don’t want to dwell on the bad things because we have so many fun new topics to explore this year. So let me sum up what has kept me away from you all… with shopping.

Today’s post is my year, in self-care purchases.

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A Very Stabby Birthday

Shiny birthday balloons in the number 30

I don’t remember much about my dad. I know that all the stories my mom tells me about their time together end with “…and then your dad stabbed him so we had to get the hell out of there.”

Practice Stabbing GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

My most vivid memory of my dad was his knife coming through the roof of the van we lived in. I can still hear my mom screaming, “Run for your life!” while I tried to super-speed activate my stubby toddler legs. It turned out my great escape wasn’t necessary; they reconciled and went on to have more children. It’s the rom-com you never knew would scare you.

They did eventually part ways. My dad got out of the van to take a leak one hot summer night and my mom just sped away. She traded the van for a trailer, the alcoholic schizophrenic for a heroin addict, and we never heard from my dad again.

Until this month. A few days before my 30th birthday.

Continue reading “A Very Stabby Birthday”