All I Want For Christmas

It’s been a whirlwind of a trip so far and we’re only about halfway through our holiday.

I woke the kids up early on the 21st in order to catch the taxi I had prearranged for 6:00am to the airport on time. I did Instagram stories for the first time depicting the morning and wake up in which Little E jumped out of bed and Z had the slowest wake up known to mankind which is completely opposite for them. ( I ended up documenting our entire day which was fun) The kids downed a bowl of cereal and brushed their teeth in record time they were so excited to for an airplane ride. In my mind I’m like y’all have flown on more planes compared to 75% of humans do in their lifetime, but memory before a certain age is a bitch so to them it was basically a first.

J had taken a box of gifts in her car for me which saved us suitcase space so we tucked our few bags in the taxi and drove the half hour to the airport which was a pleasant enough ride. Once at the airport I realized how many people travel during the holidays, something I’d never done before. We checked our bags and began the long journey through a massive security line.

This line was one of the longest I’ve seen and I’ve travelled through O’Hare which at the time was reputed to be the busiest airport in the world. I’ve traveled through Heathrow and Istanbul’s international airport. Like I’ve seen some big and busy airports, but this line took the cake. The kids were so well behaved and patient though! I was so proud of them. There was this one lady in front of us who just did not have her shit together. She went before us, and by the time all three of us had taken coats off and unpacked electronics and boarding passes, walked through security, and the replaced everything, oh including shoes on and off, she had gotten her coat back on. All I could think of was it was people like her that made the line so long and slow, not necessarily kids as most assume.

Anyways I finally had my coffee in the waiting area and the kids found a little play centre to pass the 20 minutes we had before boarding. Once we got settled on the plane, the kids were so excited for the flight that when the plane finally took off they both started giggling, it was adorable. They were perfectly quiet during the flight, Little E opting for his book, and Z practicing her lettering. The hour flight went by no problem and my dad picked us up from the airport with his customary timbits and we started the close to hour long drive home. Crazy hey?

We got to my parents house and my little sister N and her husband D were there to greet us with their little baby F, who was born a week before we left. We had an afternoon of snuggles and baby cuddling which I missed. F is a chunk bucket and the most adorable little thing ever. Then we made a stop at the kids old daycare to see their friends before it closed for Christmas. Santa was visiting there, and my kids got to go first, imagine that 😑.

My mom had a Christmas party arranged for the night and even though I was exhausted from not sleeping well the night before and my early morning, I made my appearance for her 25+ guests and the kids did well until finally dropping into bed close to midnight. This wrapping a long day one of our Christmas holiday.

-Mariah Carey/ All I Want For Christmas-

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I Remember When I Lost My Mind There Was Something So Pleasant About That Place Even Your Emotions Have An Echo In So Much Space

Friday night my kids daycare had a Christmas party where they sang a few songs and had a visit from Santa.

Where to start. Straight off the bat I thought it was kinda strange that they would be having a “concert” at daycare, but whatever C, let it be. So we showed up at 6, where I was surprised to see some of the kids in their Sunday best for this shin-dig. Here my kids are still in whatever clothes they had picked themselves to wear to school that morning and I’m pretty sure Z had been doing some sort of paint project at school since it was covering her shirt, but whatever, let kids be kids right? So here are my two children looking like scrubs but happy, amongst the rest of the kids who looked great, but half of them were crying as the night got late, since they were younger and really didn’t get this whole ‘concert’ idea.

Anyways, this thing was a freakin’ disaster from start to finish. The staff had NOOOO clue what they were doing, and kept herding kids from one place to another and then right back from where they came because there was no communication. Then they had taped/hung some sheets in front of the kids cubbys for a backdrop or something, and used heavy Christmas ornaments/statues to hold the sheets up. Well the kids kept backing into the sheets, causing the statues to fall and two kids were smacked on the head during the singing, which caused more crying and chaos to ensue. Kinda hilarious for us parents of the non-hit kids to watch. I’m awful I know.

Then this one staff member L, who I actually think is the owner which makes it worse, wouldn’t just let kids be kids. Like when you go to a kids concert, you expect to see the cute stuff like nose picking and shyness etc. But if any of the children were’t doing the exact action, she would crawl over, getting in front of the other kids, therefore messing up any videos parents were taking, and literally hold their arms and wave them around herself. Like it was ridiculous. Lighten up a bit will you?

THENNNNNN, oh here’s where we get to the part that actually made me mad. And I can’t remember the last time I was MAD like this. Call this a rant I don’t even care, this need to be discussed and I need to get these feelings out because I was PISSED.

So, Santa was about to make his appearance. All the kids were herded upstairs (again so disorganized,  but that’s not my point) and made to sit in silence, which I question since they were taking pictures with Santa, not videos, but again, not what actually made me mad, just would’ve done things differently myself considering it was supposed to be a party not a funeral home. The same L lady told all the kids they would get to have a picture with Santa and they would be choosen in order of goodness, which yeah started to bother me, because they should never be judged on character in front of each other. But as soon as she said that I saw my girl Z sit up so nice and straight and fold her hands on her lap, a position she held the entire time. Santa Ho Ho Ho’d his way in and her face lit up. She’d been talking about him all week. All the details of his visit, where will he park his reindeer? Is he scary? What will he look like? Will he know her name? On and on and on. Little E knows Santa is not real, but he played along with me in getting her prepared for this visit and she was so excited for this moment. So when L said kids would get to sit on his lap for a picture in order of goodness, I wasn’t too impressed, but when she started choosing kids willy nilly, I was like well that’s not really cool, it probably leaves kids wondering why aren’t they “good”enough. But when she choose kids yelling in her face, and  running around the room, I got annoyed. But what absolutely pissed me to no end, was to see one by one, she chose each and every *white* kid in the entire daycare, until the only 4 who were left were my 2, and 2 other mixed race sisters.

I was incensed. Especially because as I observed L’s decisions I realized that she didn’t give one fuck. These 4 kids were probably some of the best behaved kids in the room. They sat perfectly quite in their spots without shouting out or causing trouble in anyway. But she blatantly chose kids based on “goodness” in front of them and picked kids who were very obviously behaving worse than them. And parents other than me noticed. And since it’s not obvious that I’m my children’s mother, discussed her poor choosing right in front of me. I was not the only one who noticed this palpable racism. But I’m probably the only one who did anything about it.

After all the kids had finally had their turn, Z stuck around. She was the only kid who was so deeply enamoured with Santa that she went back for a couple hugs after, staying to watch him until the very last moment after all the other kids had gone to eat cookies and other treats. Like when I say this was a special moment for her, I mean she’s been talking about it non-stop. Calling her grandparents to discuss it in depth after and telling me all the dreams shes had about him since. This has affected her.

What affected me, was how her and her brother were treated along with the other 2 girls of colour. Never in my life have I seen my kids treated like this. We have lived in various cities in Canada as well as 3 in Kenya and my kids have always been treated equal to their peers, their skin never coming into play so unmistakably. So I left there with a hot head. and couldn’t let it go. If this is how they are treated on a day to day basis at the place that is supposed to care for them and teach them basic life lessons and values, then it’s an issue. A big issue. And my blood was boiling.

I couldn’t sleep that night without doing something, so I sent an email to the daycare stating my issue. Sure it could have been an oversight, and maybe it was by chance, but it was not a chance I was going to take. If my children are looked upon as less than because of melanin, then it’s a big issue that I don’t take lightly, and it needed to be addressed. Don’t worry, my email was way less wordy and not nearly as ranty as this. I explained my concerns and noted that if this was an situation that continued, then we would need to continue to examine it further. And yes I spell proofed and edited much better than this post lol. Anyways, no word back yet. Hopefully my kids don’t get kicked out of daycare for it? Although would the daycare be stupid enough to take that kind of recourse, because honestly at this point if they did something as overt as that… well then I have a case.


-Gnarls Barkley/Crazy-

 

 

My Mind Runs Wild To Comprehend What No Mind On Earth Could Understand

1,652 days from the day I got married and the day I decided to leave E. (Better than 72 days but still not impressive by any means)

1,762 days from the day I left and started this whole divorce process until yesterday, the day I got that email I thought would never come saying:

Divorce

In blue writing, emoji’s and all (yeah… millennials lol).  My divorce took 110 day longer than my entire marriage lasted.

Anyways, I was at work when the long awaited news, and I can honestly say I got overwhelmed. I experienced more emotion in that single moment then I did on my wedding day, or either day I gave birth. I had to leave work right away because I was tearing up so I sent a quick imessage to my boss and J saying I received a personal message and would be back in an hour, and left without waiting for a reply

I couldn’t even make it to my car. I, Me, C, stopped and had to sit in the stairwell to cry. Until this moment I thought people who did crap like that were just overly dramatic, like for real get your shit together. Until I couldn’t even form thoughts coherent enough to get one foot in front of the other and be confident I wouldn’t fall down the stairs. So I dropped. And sobbed. Until I heard the door above me open and thought my coworker or A had followed me out to make sure I was ok and so I rushed down the stairs to my car. Thankfully it was just another patron of the building, probably wondering what the hell was going on in the stairs lol. By the time I had gotten to my car, I had pulled myself together a bit and decided to drive down the block on the off chance anyone from work did walk out to check on me.

I parked a little ways away and the need to tell someone washed over me. It was like this was a milestone that needed to be observed and when that happens it should be noted by others, at least I thought so. So I called my mom. Wasn’t really my first choice, but it was my option in the moment. I asked if she was busy or if she had a moment to talk, and since I don’t call often ever during the day she said she was just leaving the neighbours house, but go ahead. So I let her know that my divorce was final and to be honest I can’t remember how she responded, since I was trying to suppress tears that were threatening to rise again.

She asked if she could tell the neighbour, who I grew up with and know very well, which I was fine with and she passed along the news, and then as she walked out the door she asked me how I felt about it.

Which I thought was weird. I kinda assumed everyone else would assume I would feel great about it, so the question would be unnecessary, and never asked of me. But when she asked, I realized, I didn’t feel great.

I felt like I had given up hope. I felt like this was something I’d resigned to the fact of never coming to fulfillment. I felt like E had won this forever since everything kept going his way even though his way was ridiculous. I felt like this battle had already been lost and why bother fighting anymore. So I had stopped a long time ago to preserve myself and my sanity.

And now to have it dropped in my lap…. A victory as such? I honestly didn’t know how to feel because I hadn’t prepared for it in anyway. I had only prepared for the opposite. In every way shape and form I had settled on the fact that this divorce was going to take the rest of my life and I would be stuck with E in this way forever. Caught in limbo, with each turn becoming a dead end. With each path I pursued leading me to more desolation. It no longer occurred to me that there could still be a finish line, let alone one that brought me such a decent outcome being sole custody and child support, which may not seem like much to you, but after all this time its everything to myself and the kids.

So to be shocked with this. This end. This end that provided me with something I had not planned for, was almost frightening. An end that set me free from E?

I don’t know how I feel. But I know I will know be able to spend the rest of my life discovering the new me because of it.

The new feelings and new emotions that this freedom has brought.

Because now, after many long long years, I feel I have truly lost my chains.

I, C… She has been set free. From my paranoid schizophrenic physically, mentally and emotionally abusive husband yes, but from so much more.

Where this freedom takes me is COMPLETELY up to me and only me.


-Hillsong United/Here Now (Madness)-

I Can See Clearly Now, The Rain Is Gone, I Can See All Obstacles In My Way Gone Are The Dark Clouds That Had Me Blind It’s Gonna Be A Bright (Bright), Bright (Bright) Sun-Shiny Day.

Z got glasses.

Wow.

They did a little pre-screening in her Kindergarten classroom and recommended that she go for additional testing, so I took her in a few weeks back. Yep turns out she has terrible vision.

So the glasses arrived at the clinic yesterday, and I got the call at work they were ready to be picked up. When I got the kiddos from daycare and gave them the news, she wouldn’t stop chattering on and on about how excited she was about getting them. Z is my little miss fashionista, and to her, in that moment, this was just one more accessory for her.

When we got to the optometrist office, she had a seat and they pulled out her brand new  purple pair of glasses. Which she had picked all on her own, after trying on about a dozen other pairs that just weren’t up to par. She put them on, and promptly pulled them off, got straight up off that chair and walked away saying “I don’t like them/I’m never wearing those” and refused to put them back on. I think it had changed her perception and vision so much, that it was shocking and quite frankly scary to her. The employee pulled up her chart noting that it was quite a large prescription and so the adjustment would be a big jump.

Imagine living your whole life thinking how you currently see/hear/smell/taste etc, was the best/only way to do it, and now… BAM there’s more!?!?! Is is better? In that moment all you know is that it’s different. You don’t understand that what you were experiencing before wasn’t “good enough” since it’s everything you ever knew, so to you it’s perfect. Until now. Now, there’s something that’s different with these fancy purple glasses. And up until now, every pair of glasses you had tried on was a fake dollar store pair of sunglasses at best. But these? They make you rethink/resee everything.

Scary is probably an understatement. So I did something I don’t think I’ve ever done in over 8 years of parenting. I bribed my kid with McDonald’s. 🙁   In that moment I just wanted it to be a good experience for her, and I just wanted her to try the glasses on again, and to be ok with seeing her entire world from a new perspective. Something most grown ass adults are afraid to do (I’m not talking glasses anymore, catch my drift) So I told the employee I’d work with her a bit and maybe be back to have them fitted later.

We walked out the door and as we were getting in the car I convinced her to put them on for the drive to Micky D’s, just to try. I felt awful because she had a few tears rolling down her face, but she agreed. As we drove I asked her what things she could see and could tell she was slowly getting used to them since she kept them on, but she stayed silent. I ended having to stop for gas and she asked if she could help, which I said yes too. Heck at this point I probably would’ve said yes if she asked for a pony, so let’s just be glad all she wanted was to pump gas. As she stood by quietly while the pump did it’s thing, she finally said “Mom, I can see the mountains.”

My heart broke.

I was so hurt that she had lived all this time without enjoying the beauty I take for granted everyday. Then she continued. “I can see the trees on the mountains. I can see to the back of the store, I can see the lights” etc. It was fantastic to see her discover everything that we normally discover over years, all in the span of 5 minutes. And the smile on her face was more than could ever be described. She mentioned that they were falling off, so I explained that that’s what the lady had wanted to fix back at the store, and asked if she’d be ok going back to get them fixed. She was, and I could tell the idea of wearing them more was growing on her.

So 15 minutes after we left, we were back at the optometrist with Z skipping into the store. She had them adjusted to fit and we were off to McDonald’s for my aforementioned dinner bribe.

This morning she was a little nervous to walk into daycare and asked me to go in with her (normally I just drop the two of them at the door) so I went and there was one other older girl (about 8) getting her boots off. Z didn’t want to get her coat off and stay, and the other kids made a comment along the lines of “it’s ok, no one is going to tease you” and so I said, “She wasn’t worried about kids teasing her until you mentioned it, she’ll be good.”

Z literally doesn’t know what teasing is, as I’m sure is the fact with every kids, until they are taught it (along with everything else, but that’s too much for today). She just needs to be treated the same, told she looks great, and everyone move on with their day.

Anyways. Z was cute before. But she’s even more adorable now.


-Johnny Nash/I Can See Clearly Now-

I Drink ‘Til I’m Drunk, Smoke ’til I’m High / I Stay Fresh As Hell, Take A Pic, Might As Well

Friday was our work Christmas party.

It was your pretty standard office party. Me, along with my boss A with his wife then my co-worker J and her husband. My boss’s parents even joined us for the first bit, as they live here in Kelowna and he started the company. So as per usual I was the perfect 7th wheel. Story of my life.

We started off with some axe throwing which was a good way to get some angry energy out. Just picture everything you’ve ever hated at the center of the target and throw away. I was excellent at it. I have a lot of things to envision at the moment. Well mainly one, but I used it a lot.  A’s mom didn’t hit the target once and I felt so bad for her, but she was just wildly throwing all over the place it was pretty funny in a pathetic way. Actually his wife barely got anything either now that I think of it. Woman in my group that night are not doing us any favours in the “anything guys can do we can do to” area. But I enjoyed it nonetheless. From there we went to a little hole in the wall niche pub and started with a few appetizers and drinks and I found a game/deck of cards with music questions so we fooled around with that for a bit while we waited for our reservation to open up next door.

A’s parents left us after a couple drinks and we headed to dinner around 9. Actually I should rephrase that. It was this really fancy hipster place where steak was $110 and the rest were basically tapas, so instead of dinner, we all shared about 10 tapas ranging from bone marrow to duck balls to curried carrots. All fancy, but not filling stuff. There was another bottle of wine, a couple of sangrias, and a few vodka sodas. So basically on top of the drinks from the previous joint, all this between the 5 of us, and these tiny fancy sophisticated tapas, the table was getting drunk.

Well, to be honest, the four of them were much more far gone than I was. Yea I can get drunk but it seems like it takes a lot more for me. Either way, A suggested we move venues and so we headed out. After a short walk down the street we ended up at THE white-est Irish pub known to mankind. O’Flannigans. Like it doesn’t get more Caucasian than that. But they were ready to dance (if that was possible) and I wasn’t going to stop 4 drunk people from having their fun. We headed in and ordered a round of beers and that’s when I was like ok… If I have to spend the rest of my night here, I’m gonna need to step my game up to take off the pain of this music. So we started shots. A promised me that every shot I took he would take as well, but I could tell he was already smashed so I told him it wasn’t worth it, and that he couldn’t keep up. I was right. I did 4 shots off the bat and then the band came on. They were actually a pretty decent cover band and I’ll have to admit since they didn’t play country music, that it wasn’t all that bad. I did a few more shots through the night rounding off at about 10 and bummed a few drags off a couple different groups of people outside so by then, I was feeling ok. A was so wasted after 3 shots with me that he kept insisting he could find me a guy in the pub. I was like buddy, trust me. There is not a single guy in this entire vicinity that I would come close to fucking. Not even close. Then he kept saying how about that one, or that one. And I was just like dude. You have known me how long and your even suggesting that you could find someone for me in an Irish pub where I can stand up and literally see over the heads of the majority of the crowd just shows how very little you know me. Plus hun, I don’t need nor do I want your help getting a guy. Especially if you think these guys have a chance. It’s just embarrassing for both of us.

J and her husband had to leave around midnight since their babysitter needed to head home, which was unfortunate because right after they left 3 drag queens walked in. I went and joined Sparkle, Alexa and Ella at their table and that’s when MY party got started. We did a few more shots and danced a while before A dragged himself off his chair (where I swore he almost fell asleep a few times) to let me know they had to head out. His wife was so disappointed and kept telling me she could’ve danced the whole night, but A wanted to go home and check on the dogs (lame) so I figured I would leave then too. O’Flannigans wasn’t my spot of choice in the first place, so I wasn’t staying alone.

All in all, it was a decent night. I looked more then hot. 15 drinks down. New food experienced. A joint smoked. Dancing with drag queens. Snuck into 2 other peoples random selfies. Danced with 2 guys who you know thought they were getting lucky before I walked away. Only inappropriately touched once. And managed to taxi home to the sitter without fucking anyone.

Productive.


-Bruno Mars, Kodak Black, Gucci Mane/Wake Up In The Sky-