Category Archives: New York

Defining the Girl…or Facing Facebook.

I was trying to define my blog to someone today. Tried to explain what it was about without saying something mundane like “Oh, it’s all about my ever so exciting life.” Truth of the matter is, my life is pretty exciting. Not in a “travel-all-over-the-world-make-love-to-diplomats-spend-too-much-cash” kind of way, but in a “hey, I accidentally shit myself while bending over to pick up a dust bunny” way. How fun is that?

The person I was talking to happily accepted that definition and then asked me another question that I truly could not answer.

“So, why don’t you put your blogposts up on Facebook? You’re friends must think you’re hilarious!”

*blink*

Truth be known, my “friends” do think I am hilarious. I am one of those chicks that goes straight from the heart to the mouth without a pit-stop at the brain in between. I tend to say whatever I am feeling in my heart at any given moment before my frontal lobe has a chance to say, “Er, CP? That MAY not be appropriate right now.” No. More poor brain is usually the organ that has to do damage control after my heart causes my tongue to flap.

But, yes indeed. WHY don’t I post my blog links on Facebook? Fair enough question.

I think there are a few reasons. First and foremost is privacy. Not MY privacy, mind you, but rather, my husband and children’s privacy. In the five years I have been blogging, I have never mentioned my husbands name. That is not to say that some of you don’t know the mans name. Some of you have met him in “real time”. And, some of you have known me longer than I have known him, so naturally, you would know who he is. Then, there are the select few (read: 3) who read my blog who know me in real life on a day to day basis. Most of my blog readers don’t even know MY name. And, when I meet a blogger in real life, they tend to call me “CP” anyway, because that’s how you know me. But, for the hotband, I have to maintain a modicum of privacy. He has a pretty high profile job and there is a certain decorum that comes with his job.

And then, I look at HIS Facebook page, and he puts up all sorts of horny looking fruit, inappropriate Jesus pics and makes homosexual references with all MY guy friends. So, WHY the hell am I holding back on my blog?

Because…if he wants to put himself out there, that’s his prerogative. I am still going to respect the boundaries, even though he never put any up for me.

Then, there is another aspect I have considered. My Facebook friends vs. My Blogger Friends. Some of you overlap into both categories. I think there are 14 of you, actually, who are “friended” on Facebook but started off knowing me via this blog. My Blog Friends are a much cooler breed. We understand that we can cross certain lines with one another. We know that one year in blog time is the equivalent of 5 years real time. Therefore, I know many of you longer in that sense than I do the people I have been friends with for 20 years or more. And, while my friends of 30 years care about me very much, I don’t think they want to know that I was a domestic violence survivor. I don’t think they care that I survived cancer. I don’t know that they would give a shit one way or another that I struggle with bipolar disorder on a daily basis. And, I believe that most of them would be entirely too judgmental with regard to my drug addiction and subsequent recovery.

So, it begs the question…are these “friends” on Facebook ACTUALLY my friends?

I think in some ways, yes, we are. We have history. We have memories of our childhood and our youth. That’s something that we as adults tend to cling to. My husband, as close as we are, will never understand how I grew up. He doesn’t know what it was like to be a little kid living in NYC no more than I can ever know about his experiences growing up in Israel. It’s nice to have those people in your life that you can reminisce with. It’s fun. But, does it provide a longevity to the relationship? Not really. When I reconnected with some old junior high friends on Facebook, it was a blast. We couldn’t stop talking about growing up in Queens and what it meant to each of us. How it shaped us into the adults we are today. We talked, shared, laughed…and then, burnt it out. While we still engage in some witty banter here and there, do I think any of these people would drop whatever they were doing to be at my side if something traumatic happened in my life?

*sighs* No. No I don’t. Even the person I was closest to growing up has turned her back on me in some aspects. She hides my feed because I am (insert adjective for vulgar, crass, classless, rude, explicit, etc.). And I get it. She’s got her kids on her Facebook. Can’t have me talking about the new lube and vibrators I bought on my status and have it show up on her wall, right? I do get it. That’s also why my son is NOT my Facebook friend…nor are my nephews and nieces. As far as I am concerned, Facebook is NO place for children, period. But, to each their own. My daughter is on my Facebook…but she’s 22, married and knows that her mother is a tad fucked in the head. My son is only first learning that. Why rush it? He’ll get it soon enough.

Which brings me back to the original question. Why don’t I post my blogposts on Facebook? The answer is…I don’t quite know. I suppose there might be a small part of me that is going to wonder what people will think of me, which is ironic because I am definitely one of those people who generally don’t give a fuck what others think of me. But, these are childhood friends who have a certain vision of me, a particular memory that I don’t want to taint. Then again, I suppose true friends would love you regardless and understand that the person you were at 14 is not necessarily the person you are at 40.

Then, there is the BIG reason I don’t post my blog posts on Facebook. My brother. He’s a great guy. He totally knows how screwed up I am. He is equally as fucked in the brain. We were raised by the same woman…and THAT, Dear Friends, is the ULTIMATE reason. The one that trumps all. I simply CANNOT have Esther reading my blog. I love my mother but, if you are a long time reader or know her in real life, you know what an absolute LOONEY TUNE she is. If she ever caught wind of the things that I write about her…she’d kill me. Not figuratively. Literally. Like, I have given instructions to my husband to form my blog into a book posthumously if she ever kills me so everyone knows what an absolute banshee she is/was. Don’t get me wrong. There is a certain beauty to being raised by a psychopath. It allows me to be quirky, strange and crazy. When I tell people I am bipolar, they nod. Then, they meet my mom…and suddenly, they nod emphatically…and it all just comes together for them.

The crazy thing is, I have met such interesting and amazing people on Facebook. People that I do NOT know from my past or that I blog with or know in real life. Simply people who I have met in passing either playing a game or stumbling onto their page. Really great people. I would love to share my blog posts with them…but still, I feel some hesitation and restraint.

*raises brows*

Hesitation? Restraint? Foreign concepts to me that I am STILL getting used to.

So, for right now, I am simply using the website “Networked Blogs” on Facebook as my tiny baby step, my little foray into taking my blog out of hiding. (There’s a link to it on my sidebar. No, lower. Lower. Yeah. Right there. Click it if you’re on Facebook.) I think, in reality, my blog will exist long after my old friendships fall away. This is home for me. This is where I feel best and can relax and be myself.

And, if you can’t be yourself…why be at all?

Just when you think it’s safe to smile…

something happens that just knocks the wind out of your sails.

Four hours ago, I was the happiest woman alive. My husband is home from California. My son is here. My daughter stopped by to visit with my two beautiful grandchildren. We laughed, had dinner together as a family; something we haven’t been able to do much of since my daughter moved to her own home a few months ago.

I remember the absolute angst that I felt the day she moved out of my home with her husband and her daughter. Sure, they were only moving one town away, but never in 22 years have my daughter and I not lived under the same roof. When she left, the house dynamic changed. It lost a lot of life. My daughter is my shining star and that beautiful little girl she brought into my life only made my daughter that much more of an indelible force in my world. Now we are both mothers, together. Just another bond that keeps us close. Yes, I have an amazing son. He’s bright, funny and a really good kid. I love him like mad. But, ask most mothers and usually they can all agree on one thing:

The bond you have with your daughter is like no other.

So, imagine my surprise, when after dinner my daughter informs me that her husband is getting a promotion. A big promotion. One that means they are going to have to relocate.

To New York. New York. 1200 miles away.

It might as well be another planet.

I drew in a breath as though I had been kicked in the gut. Things in my body that I never knew existed started to ache. Pain. Pain that I have not felt before in my life literally surged through me. My baby girl is leaving me in Florida while she and her family move to New York. Her family. MY family. My grandbabies. My precious, beautiful grandbabies are no longer a fifteen minute drive away. There will be no more cuddling on demand. No more kisses goodnight. No more picking up my granddaughter from daycare, watching with absolute joy as she runs towards me with her arms outstretched, reaching for me.

And my grandson. Dear God, my grandson. Not even two weeks old yet. He will never know me from anything other than a photograph. I will be a stranger to him when I go to visit. I’ll miss Liam’s first words. His first steps. His first everything.

I won’t be there for Sadie’s first day of pre-school. Dance recitals.

My head is absolutely reeling right now. I feel numb, dead inside. I am walking around like a zombie. I can’t wrap my head around the fact that my children are going to be in New York while I am in Florida. I can’t fathom it.

And there’s not a damn thing I can do about it. Nothing.

I thought that in my 42 years on this planet, that I have experienced heartbreak. I was wrong. Nothing has felt like this. Not even the loss of my son 14 years ago felt like this. Does that sound melodramatic? Perhaps to some, it might. But right now, I feel like I am losing my daughter. Losing her. Losing Sadie. Losing Liam. They won’t be here for holidays. For birthdays. She will not just “drop by” after work anymore. Our entire mother/daughter experience will rely on phone calls and emails. They will probably come rapid fire at first…and then, with time, they will probably whittle down to weekly. She will be busy with her babies and her husband making their new life in New York. She won’t have time for dear old mom anymore.

My grandchildren won’t know me. I’ll be a photograph hanging from a refrigerator magnet, just like my mother is on mine.

My first knee jerk reaction was to tell her how selfish this was. How can you take my babies away from me? How can you just leave like that after living in my home with your husband for three years? I felt betrayed. I felt used. And then, I felt the anger turn to pain. Then, pain into sorrow.

I want the best for my daughter and her husband. I want them to have opportunities that my husband and I have not had. What parent doesn’t want better for their children? I apologized to her for my initial reaction. I told her it came from a place of fear, not anger. The fear that I was being left behind. They don’t need me anymore. They are branching out on their own, leaving the proverbial nest. I should feel some joy knowing that I have prepared her well for this…but all I can feel is sadness.

Watching my granddaughter playing in my living room tonight was painful. I won’t have this anymore. Liam was curled up in his baby bouncer. Sadie came over to him and patted his head gently. She gave him a kiss. She said “Hi Baby” and then threw her arms around me for a big hug.

And I just broke down in hysterics. Literally heaving sobs.

My babies are leaving me and I don’t know what to do. I simply don’t know what to do. How can I just stand here and watch them leave?

My daughter. My first born. My heart and soul.

I don’t even have the words to tie this post up into a neat little package. My world completely flipped upside down in the course of an hour.

How do you say goodbye to the very thing that makes you want to live?