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Saturday, June 22, 2019

This One Is About The Dog


     My Jack. My Guy. My Colonel Brasstail. I got Jack when he was just over a year old, from a woman on Craigslist who had been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis and could no longer take him for walks. For those that have known me since then, they'll remember the fight I had to go through to get him to be my dog. There's no one like Jack, he's the best person I know. He's patient, cute, a great snuggler and he'd text you "Good Morning, beautiful," texts if he could. Fun fact, over the years, I had several guys ask to take Jack to the dog park so they could use him to pick up girls. Jack is a swimmer, a great one. Prone to ear infections because he's a lab but they never did phase him. I frequently used to catch him swimming in my parent's pool, (he would also get out of the pool to go pee, such a gentleman).

     He's turning 11 in one month and two nights ago while Isla was taking a bath, I snapped a photo of them together and realized that I haven't had one-on-one time with Jack in a long, long time. His eyes looked older, cataract-y. His facial hair a little more gray. He's gotten slower coming in the house. In fact, if you know me at all, you know I am completely terrified of frogs. Several months ago I was alone in the house and let both dogs out to potty, Jack took his time walking back and inadvertently let a tree frog in the house. The cat didn't do anything about it except bat it around a little - meanwhile I was screaming and sweating while standing on my child's PlaySkool stool trying to usher it out with a broom. Complete chaos.

     Jack hates baths. He loves frozen watermelon. He also loves beer. One time I trained him to get beer out of the fridge. Another time, I took him to a cafe on the beach and was holding a pint of beer between my knees and he came up and starting chugging it. One time I threw his fetch toy into a retention pond that I didn't realize they had dyed green, and he came out green. He got skunked once and I thought someone was simultaneously smoking a massive bowl and also burning tires. He dug a huge hole in my neighbor's backyard and someone labeled him a backhoe. He sprinted through someone's screen door and broke it. One time I accidentally threw his fetch toy too much at the beach that he swallowed so much water that when he would bark, water would shoot out of his butt. The night I brought my daughter home from the hospital he gently licked her head, as if to say "hello, I'm your nanny!" He is a fantastic (or very promiscuous) host - he will sleep with any guest that comes over and follow them around.

     His feet smell like popcorn (or Fritos) and I love it. His breath isn't too stinky, in fact his vet said his teeth look great. He is great at acting as a Roomba, but then again what dog isn't? Seriously, I can't imagine having children and NOT having dogs! We don't deserve them. Jack is snuggled up next to me on the couch right now, I know he can't read (honestly though he probably can), but I want everyone to know how much I love him.

Saturday, August 04, 2018

drapetomania (n): an overwhelming urge to run away.


....but seriously how far could I actually run because I hate running.

So, here's some news if you haven't already noticed or heard through Facebook or Instagram - I'm single, and I'm a mother, therefore, I'm a single mother. Those words feel partially empowering and partially like nails on a chalk board.

It's a tough pill to swallow when I get the random messages from people who reach out asking "what happened?" People I haven't spoken to in years, who haven't cared about anything to do with my life, but now want an in to my "drama."

Well, I'll be honest. He told me he didn't love me anymore. Want to know how bad that hurt?

I cried a lot. I was scared (I'm still scared). I begged for counseling. He completed two sessions with me. Two. I continued going on my own, bringing Isla with me, and even once I moved back to Florida continued phone sessions with my counselor. I continued teaching cycle and trying to inspire others when I felt completely uninspiring and literally dead inside. I was angry, resentful at him for making me a single mother and resentful for how this could affect our child.

I was tired of feeling like I didn't hold any power in what was left of my crumbling relationship, so I drove myself down to an attorney's office and filed for divorce on April 5th. Packed my things April 6th and flew Isla and myself back to Florida April 8th while my dad drove my 4Runner, dog and two cats.

I'll never forget driving away from what was my home for so long. My first purchased house. I remember listening to the waterfall in the pool the night before I left, laying in bed by myself trying not to cry and trying to be brave. After my things were packed, the house was relatively empty, it was cold, it didn't feel like a home anymore. I sold a lot of stuff, got a lot of questions from neighborhood strangers "I'm getting a divorce," I'd say, "Oh my gosh I'm so sorry," I became numb to that response.

My dad and I drove to Albuquerque where Isla and I flew out from. I flew first class because with an infant in your arms and a pending divorce you need all the free alcohol you can get.

The divorce was final April 27th. I still have my ring and haven't decided what to do with it.

Fast forward four months later. While I'm still not happy and still extremely resentful, I'm working hard. Sometimes I still wake up in disbelief that this is my life now.  I appreciate the people who have reached out (literally nearly everyone I'm friends with on Facebook); you have absolutely no idea the impact of your kind words. I think currently I'm struggling with some depression because my life has regressed so much, but I remind myself that this is temporary. I wake up everyday and try to show Isla how brave and determined I am. Because it's the truth, I am brave and I am determined. I land on my feet EVERY TIME. I refuse to let someone else's choice dictate the rest of my life.

Some days I want to say, "you don't love me anymore? Well I love me twice as much as you ever did." And that's that.


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