The Aftermath 

I recently wrote a post about my week on Lake Superior with my ex husband and our children.  I wrote about how awesome it was to vacation with an ex, because it was amazing for our children to experience being a ‘together’ family.  My eight year old is actually self conscious about being a child of divorce.  

I always assure her, that when she gets older, she will have more friends of divorced parents than not.  And then I tell her that since she went through it first, that she will be a great friend to help the newbies when they experience it.  Still, she was so happy to go on that vacation, to have her dad around.  I wrote about the absolute joy it was to actually have an ex husband that I can get along with.  It really was a great week.

What I haven’t written about is the crippling depression that followed our adventures.  I crashed hard after the high of being part of the family that we could have been for a short time.  It was incredibly emotional for me to experience that, only to have my kids go with their dad for two whole weeks right after.  I went from having everything that ever meant anything back for a week to being completely alone, in a day.  My girls have never been gone this long.  It has been a dark time for me.

These emotions are more complex than what I’m used to.  It has nothing to do with wanting my ex back.  I absolutely do not want my ex back.  But at the same time, he remains the only man I’ve ever really loved.  He represents my greatest achievement, being a mother with a family of my own.  He also represents my greatest failure, tearing that family apart and struggling ever since.

It was the nostalgia of the way it used to be.  It was talking with my ex mother-in-law, who I love talking with now.  But also remembering that she used to drive me insane.  And then realizing that I always took her unconditional love for granted, because I didn’t really know what the hell to do with it.  I resented her for being everything my own mother wasn’t. I pushed her away, divorced her son, and she is still the closest thing to a loving mom that I have ever had.

It was listening to the old CD’s and talking about our first date.  It was reminiscing about bringing our little girls home from the hospital.  It was admitting that we had both done wrong, understanding that we went through it all together, and seeing each other as both family and strangers in a vulnerable new blending of the people we had become after hurting each other for ten damn years.  

And while he drove off with our girls in his truck, on his way to see his patient new girlfriend and assure her that his heart is hers now and no longer belongs to me, I was left in the emotional wake of being completely alone.  Just me and the cats, sitting around thinking about how my life has been a series of bad decisions that landed me alone in a trailer and crying over the fact that my kids really are probably better off living with their dad.  He is building a home and a family for them that I will never be able to give.  He cooks beautiful and healthy meals and manages his money like an accountant.  I can barely take care of myself some days and am starting all over again in life because I fell in love with another guy who couldn’t stand me.  

And this is the darkest side of single parenting.  The guilt never really goes away.  The pressure of doing it all never really becomes bearable.  And sometimes you sit and think about how much better it would be for them if you weren’t in the picture.  And then you remember that you love them enough to try harder.  So you get up off your whining ass and get started with rebuilding your damn life again.  Because eventually, if you keep trying, you know you will get it right.  And if you don’t, they will at least know that you tried.  And kept trying.  For them.

The Crab and the Kite


So I spent the past week rambling through Northern Michigan with my ex-husband, our two daughters, and a three-legged American bull dog. It was a crowded 900 miles altogether, packed into the extended cab of a Silverado with pillows and blankets and Capri suns. I was nervous about this co-parenting experiment with the guy whom I spent the entire decade of my twenties with. We have always done little dinners or day trips every once in a while. We’ve done holidays together and apart. We have also had some challenges over the past six years, since the split. I wasn’t sure how this was going to play out. This was our first week long family vacation. I was hopeful, but apprehensive about how this trip would feel, to me or the kids. It’s a little strange to spend a week as the family that we used to be, but that no longer exists.


It couldn’t have gone any better. Everyone was happy. Our fourteen year old daughter had no service on her cell phone. She played scrabble and laughed so hard, she had to hold her belly. We had a family joke, where she said that I looked like a Susan and her dad looked like a Brad. Then she joked about making ‘Starter Pack Memes’ with our new names. Like the Brad Starter Pack would include a vape pen and Jordans and some shitty techno music. The Susan starter pack would include tarot cards and cats and cheap leggings from Dollar General. We made up names for the girls and carried this cheesy joke through the whole trip. I think that joke will end up being our favorite souvenir.  


My eight year old went fishing, and impressed her grandfather with the ability to bait and remove her own hook. She smiled so much, her cheeks hurt. I think ‘Brad’ and I both enjoyed the scenery of watching our girls play together, and discover the breathtaking beauty of Northern Michigan, along the Lake Superior coastline. We had real, family conversations about the steady stream of changes in all of our lives, while hiking through a wild wonderland of beautiful waterfalls, sandstone cliffs, and forests that could heal your soul.  


We got to be those nerdy parents who sat by the fire and shared dating advice with our fourteen year old daughter while we drank some two hearted ales, just miles away from the actual river that beer is named after. Our daughter got to engage in a very entertaining conversation about how we met, and the things that we went through, and how she came about, and how much we loved her. It was the kind of conversation that could have never happened, had we stayed together. Because her dad and I have dated other people off and on for the past six years, we both have a lot of knowledge to share in that department.  


There we were, in our old tattoos that used to read each other’s names, now covered up by a crab and a kite, explaining how dating was different in the nineties, and how some things will never change. My daughter must have been impressed to receive dating advice from her divorced and relationally dysfunctional parents as we sipped just enough alcohol to take the edge of the awkwardness off. But I will bet you, she will remember that night for the rest of her life. She will know that her parents love her enough to plan a crazy divorced family vacation for her. And she will tell her children one day of the time we hiked to Mosquito Falls, uphill both ways, with a three-legged dog and a family that stayed a family even though it exists in different households and in different cities.


Now that the trip is over, and life is back to normal, I am filled with gratitude for the way things turned out.


 And I am very proud of the fact that my children will continue to benefit from a truce that turned into a genuine friendship.

Girls Growing Up

“Be good to her.  She’s rare.”  ~r.h. Sin

My daughter is exceptionally beautiful.  I’m not just saying this because I’m her mom.  She is fourteen years old and she turns heads everywhere she goes.  People always tell me that she should be a model.  I’m not saying this to brag.  I’m saying this because it is terrifying to have a fourteen year old daughter who walks in front of me at the grocery store while creepy old men walk by, staring her up and down like a piece of meat.  They don’t even notice the madness in my eyes while they are so obviously drooling over the little girl that I have nurtured and protected since she was a seed in my belly.  I could dig their eyes right out of their fucking heads with my bare hands.  

She met a boy last weekend while we were on vacation.  He won’t stop sending her pictures of her name drawn in the sand with hearts around it.  I like that boy, he is her own age and lives miles away from us.  I don’t like the soon-to-be eighteen year old boy who keeps inviting her out for dates.  She thinks he’s hot AF, as she and her friends describe him.  I want to grab an ax and go all Paul Bunyan on the pedestal these girls have placed him on.  He looks like a complete douche to me, and I think he should find a girl his own age.  

I’ve done my best to educate her on soon-to-be eighteen year old boys and their intentions.  I’ve tried to encourage her to love herself so fiercely, that any guy would have to prove himself undeniably for a piece of her heart.  But she’s fourteen and full of hormones and hungry for life experience.  

I was a fourteen year old girl too.  I get it, I do.  But I can’t help but to realize that my grip on her is fading.  Every passing day, she is less mine and more her own.  I’m learning how to replace leading her with guiding her.  And it’s so fucking hard, but I know that she will be grown and gone in the blink of an eye.  

She’s completely oblivious to the creepy old men.  Her eyes are fixed on their sons.  And I want so badly for her eyes to be fixed on her own dreams.  I want her to fight vigorously for a future that suits her, one where she lives happily with all of her greatest aspirations attained.

I see pieces of myself in her, and it scares the hell out of me.  I always took the wrong roads, the hard roads.  I want so badly for her to hear my voice, to see my fingers, pointing her into the direction of least resistance.  But she is my daughter and her will to make her own road is unwavering.  

It’s an odd thing, giving precious life to a child and watching them take it into their own hands.  I needed more time.  I will always need more time.

Short and Sweet 


I ended my fling with the drug dealer today. It wasn’t easy to walk away from someone who literally woke me up after a passionless slumber of three years. But it was the right thing to do. We were a fish and a bird. Two different worlds that could never merge into one, and I am a girl who will conjure up feelings for anyone who sticks around long enough. So I gave him a respectable goodbye text.  It was short and sweet.  He responded by letting me know that his door is always open.  

The challenge now is for me to stay the hell away from that door, no matter how enticing it may be.  

I’m proud of myself for not falling down another rabbit hole. I stepped into it, wandered around a bit, admired the scenery, and then climbed back out into my own world. This emotionally detached life is not an easy one, but it certainly can be adventurous. And I think I have finally figured out how to appreciate the adventure. 

I’m going to miss him.

Feeding the Monster 


I grew up with extreme parents. They tried, with everything they had, to keep me on a short leash. I have never been one to submit to authority.  

I have tried. I was extremely devoted in my marriage. I tried my best to be domesticated, but there’s a monster inside of me that freaks the fuck out when my life falls into the mundane. I crave excitement. I have to push boundaries. I get restless for adventure.  I need to break rules.

This is precisely why I have always had commitment issues. I’ve tried to settle down with the good guys, I’ve tried to stick with the straight and narrow. But after so long, my inner monster wants to get out and mingle with the dark side.

I spent last weekend with the drug dealer from my previous post. He isn’t a bad guy, in fact he is very sweet and has kind of a nerdy side. He tells me stories of a domesticated past that once held him captive. But to my family, he is forbidden because of his race. And his phone was ringing constantly with disappointed customers looking for a fix while he was out of town visiting me.

This is not a guy who I should be sharing my time with. But my inner monster is completely enthralled with the rebellion of sleeping with a guy who doesn’t fit into my world at all.

My good side, the part of me that always sees the best in people, had a good time too. I enjoyed the excitement on his face, as we drove past a deer grazing on the riverside with the sunset falling behind us. He was like a little kid watching the storms roll in on the wide open farm fields.  His eyes lit up with every stroke of lightning that blasted across the black sky.  And the sex was just as amazing as the last time. 

Is it really better to settle down with weekend shopping trips to Home Depot and arguing about the household chores? Is this truly how we should be spending the little time we have here…chaining ourselves to the picket fence and a golden retriever?  That’s the American dream, not mine.  I’m quite content to immerse myself into wild little flings with men who understand my monsters, because they have them too.  And now that he’s gone back to the city, I can handle the monotony of my 9 to 5 and running the kids around to dentist appointments and cheerleading tryouts.  I am in love with the contrast of my life.

Sex in the City


If you have read my other posts, you will realize that I have been stuck in a bit of a dry spell. I’m a single mom who works full time and until recently, I spent my Saturdays in school. Even before my breakup last summer, it was three years of really bad, passionless sex that didn’t happen very often. So my love life has been on the back burner. Somewhere along this journey of finding myself, I lost interest in others. I tried to date, but the couple of guys that I had gone out with just couldn’t catch my attention. I sort of lost my mojo, which is a bit of a tragedy for me. My mars is in Scorpio, so sex has always been a really big part of my life.  

This past weekend, I set some time aside to take care of this missing piece in my life. I finally had some time to meet up with a guy that I had met at a concert a couple months ago. He is an adorable biracial man with lots of charm and a big interest in me.  He is ten years older and has the sexiest set of lips I have ever seen.  The night I met him, we chatted quite a bit, and the more I talked with him, the more attracted to him I became. So we made plans.  I drove to his house and he took me around his little neighborhood in the big city. He knew a lot of history about the old buildings we wandered past. He was very sweet, full of compliments, and I kind of got the impression that he is a little bit of a local celebrity because he knew a lot of people at every bar we stopped in.  He introduced me to a very interesting group of characters along the way, and explained that he works in sales with all of these businesses.

He also sat me down to tell me that he liked me a lot and needed to be honest. (This conversation starter always happens to me…the ‘I’m married,’ or ‘I’m a cross dresser’ conversation. Nothing surprises me anymore.) His big secret was that his sales job extended beyond the items that he originally told me about. His side job was moving cocaine and various other controlled substances. Honestly, I know this should have bothered me. I’m a mom, and I have never even done cocaine. But I really didn’t mind. In fact, I thought it was kind of hot. I liked that he has a bit of a dark side. I have one too. I was never nervous or scared around him. We even made a delivery together, along our way. And it was quite pleasant. His customers were very nice and interesting people. One guy even offered me a line, to which I politely declined.  I really enjoyed adventuring around through this guys life, that is so very different from mine.  It was quite the adventure for this small town girl.

I grew up in the country with a dad who I love very much in spite of his right wing political beliefs and extreme racism.  He is stubborn and flawed, but he really does have a lot of good qualities.  I’ve written about him a couple of times.  But I have always been a girl with a mind of my own. I’m a bleeding heart liberal who always follows the beat of my own heart. That being said, if my dad knew what happened after the big city tour with my biracial friend, he would never speak to me again. He doesn’t believe that biracial relationships are acceptable. I disagree with him. And I find my new friend to be incredibly attractive.

After a few drinks, we went to the grocery store, where he stopped to introduce me to a few more friends, and grabbed some items so he could make us dinner. He was very proud of his cooking skills. I always enjoy a man who can cook.

I was sitting at the table, smoking a joint, listening to Marvin Gaye, and watching this sweet and beautiful man cook for me. He walked over to kiss me, in a way that I have not been kissed in a very long time. It was those lips!  Things escalated quite quickly from there. He turned the stove off, with burgers half cooked and lead me to his bedroom where we stripped each other down and he bent me over the bed. He leaned over my prone body, and whispered in my ear, with his hand on the back of my neck, ‘Do you know how lions fuck?’ I was paralyzed with anticipation. ‘They fuck every fifteen minutes for twenty four hours straight. And that’s what I’m going to do with you. I’m a Leo.’ He knows about my thing for astrology.  

And that’s precisely what happened. We had a full on passion fest all night long and well into the next day. He never stopped touching me. He never stopped talking about how beautiful I was, how good I felt to him, how much he liked me. When the thunder storm rolled in, he opened the window and we had very passionate sex to the soundtrack of lightning strikes and the Hall and Oates radio station on Pandora.  I would have never thought of Hall and Oates for the bedroom, but apparently he and I had a conversation about them the night we met and I thought it was sweet of him to think of me.  Oddly enough, it was a very sexy combination.  I have been listening to Hall and Oates for three damn days now.  Also, thunderstorm sex is my favorite.

I lost count of the orgasms he gave me. He was an absolute pussy whisperer. It was the greatest sexual experience of my life. And that is saying a lot, because I have had a lot of experience in that department. But this guy had a very rare and special blend of dominance and submission. He would smack my ass and then kiss my forehead and tell me he loved my eyes and lips. I don’t even know what he was doing to me at certain points, but whatever it was, it had me drowning in ecstasy.  He turned the lights on and stared at me, just laying naked and vulnerable across his bed.  He told me he wanted to see me.  And then he crawled back inside me again and again.  Seriously… I had just won the sexual lottery.  When I told him that I had never been with anyone who had a sex drive higher than mine, he laughed and told me that he could fuck me all night and all day, and then masturbate about me after I left.  This guy is a literal manifestation of exactly what I needed.

I woke up the next morning and checked my Facebook while Mr. Wonderful made us breakfast. The first thing I saw on my phone was a tagged photo shoot from my mom. She and my dad were visiting Tennessee for a reunion with a couple of veterans that served with my dad in Vietnam. I was very proud of him for taking the trip. And there he was, dressed in a white confederate officer uniform, draped in a confederate flag, with a sword in his hand and his buddies dressed up like confederate soldiers by his side. It looked like a fucking klan meeting.  This is my life…  I was humiliated. Just as I have not told my dad about my new biracial friend…I also left the whole racist dad thing out when sharing my life story to Mr. Wonderful. I untagged myself as quickly as possible and prayed that he didn’t see it. He didn’t mention it if he did. He just cooked me an amazing breakfast, told me that I was beautiful, and then proceeded to give me more orgasms all day long. Even after he complained about his hips hurting from the night before, he still managed to spend all of Sunday afternoon servicing my body in ways I didn’t even know existed. I could not have picked a better guy to jump back into the saddle with.  

My whole body is sore and it still hurts when I pee, but that was one of the best weekends I have ever experienced. I know I should worry about what my racist dad would think if he knew I was now completely addicted to the affections a half black cocaine dealer from the city…but I don’t care about any of that. I care that I found someone who excites me and has awakened the beast of desire that had long been sleeping inside me. I care that I spent the weekend with a stranger who made me feel really good about myself. I care that I have finally moved the fuck on with my life.  And nothing else really matters.  

My Girl 


K, 

I watched you playing tennis at the school yesterday. There you were, all grown up and blossoming into someone I can’t help but to admire. Your life was the greatest surprise I have ever experienced. You were sweet and beautiful from day one.  

Dad and I always joked that you got the very best of our genetics. It’s true! Your beauty is almost obnoxious. Your sweet soul shines around you and I sit in awe with the thought that you came from me.  

Watching you grow, seeing the world through your big green eyes, has been the adventure of a lifetime. Your first steps, the first time you tasted a lemon, watching you learn to swim, to ride a bike, it has all been the sweet golden syrup on the pancake of my life.  

I feel guilty sometimes because you have been the very best part of my life, and I have just done the best I can to be your mom. I had no idea what I was doing when we brought you home from the hospital. We sort of figured out the whole mom and daughter thing as we’ve gone along. I suppose we’re both still learning.  

It is surreal to see you all grown up, doing the same teenager stuff that I used to do. I remember being the age you are now, and I could never have imagined that I would grow up and have a daughter as amazing as you.  I hope you live a fearless life and you experience adventures that set your soul on fire. I hope you always see yourself the way I see you, as absolute perfection. I hope you never lose your sense of compassion, it is one of my favorite things about you. I hope your life is exactly what you want it to be. And I hope you keep your heart and mind open, always.    

I know your life hasn’t been easy. I know you have had to deal with my life never being ‘together.’ And I hope you know that every morning when I wake up, I try to get it right, for you.  

I hope you will always think of me when you see the moon, and remember our long talks under the stars. Hearing your stories and listening as you figure yourself out and your ideas about life…those are my favorite things.  Those are the sweetest memories that I will carry with me forever.

Thank you for being the unexpected little light in my life.  I love you.  
~Mom