Category Archives: separation

Focus 52: "Love, Baby"

“Stay there. Just like that. I have my camera under the pillow.”

“What?”

“Sh.  Don’t move.  Don’t smile. Just stay…like that.”

*click*

Yes, People. I went “there”.  I always wanted a photo of us literally seconds after the the “big finish”.  I love the glazed over look on his face.  I love how soft his eyes are.  I love that I can’t help from biting my bottom lip like a schoolgirl with a big secret.  What you can’t feel in this photo is the warmth between our two bodies.  What you cannot see in this photo is how our legs are intertwined under our big down comforter.  How his right foot is playing with the bottom of my left foot, tickling me.  How the tips of his fingers are swirling soft, concentric circles just above the top of my ass, in that small indentation we women have in our lower backs.  What you cannot hear are the banging of two over taxed hearts and the huff and puff of the aftermath of the aerobic exercise we just completed.  Neither of us are particularly active people…except in this arena.  It is here that we can run the mile, vault the horse, stick the landing and end with a perfect dismount that even the harshest of Russian judges would have to give a “10” to.

This picture is not about two people who just had sex, bumped uglies, did the nasty, made the four armed machine, etc.  This photo is this weeks title:  Love, Baby.  After 11 long years together, this man still captivates me.  Every line, every dent, every nook and cranny.  His scent intoxicates me.  His eyes draw me in like magnets.  His breath on my face is like warm apple pie.  His hands feel like butterflies, flickering all up and down this expansive mountain of flesh that makes up my ample body.

And me?  What you are seeing there is a rare moment…only vaguely seen by previous lovers, but never quite the way my husband sees it.  It is vulnerability.  It is the taming of the shrew.  It is the moment that I become not just his wife or lover, but rather, his mistress.  His virgin.  His whore.  His Goddess.  His first time.  My first time. And what will be, for both of us, our last time…until the next time.

Each experience of making love to my husband is more intense than the last.  Orgasms be damned, for it is SO no longer about that.  It is about what I bring to the game, on bended knee if you will, for him.  He is not a selfish lover, by any means…but never in my entire sexually active life have I yearned to be more of the pleasurer than the pleasured.  Together we are a force to be reckoned with.  While we are working with the broken down bodies of what a man in his late thirties and a woman in her mid forties can offer, when it is time for game on, we are two eighteen year olds bringing 38 years worth of combined experience to the table. We are passionate, feverish, combining sweetness with the tart and tangy and softness with the heavy handed and hardened.  He is the yin to my yang and every move is done in perfect sympatico.

This picture.  It captures “love, baby” because feasibly, you will never meet another couple more in love than he and I.  Other couples aspire higher when they are around us.  I joke to my husband and say “we’re contagious, babe!”  They become better couples in our presence because they yearn to have what we do.  We’ve both heard it before.  “Oh, I wish our marriage was like yours.  You guys always look like you are having so much fun together.”  And, truth be told? We ARE having that much fun together.  We laugh during sex.  We laugh during nervous times.  We laugh in the midst of crisis…one of us usually cracking an inappropriate joke to lighten the mood.

It would sound as if I were bragging if it weren’t just merely the truth.  

It wasn’t always this way.  We had our share of problems in the very beginning.  His baggage came in form of a carry on piece of luggage with rickety wheels and a broken handle.  Mine came in a Louis Vuitton  8 piece steamer trunk set.  Once we learned how to put our clothes away and put the luggage in storage, our life together truly began and we haven’t looked back since.

“Lemme see the picture,” he says.

I show him.

“Aw, Baby…”, he whispers to me.  “You look like a little kid about to burst into laughter.  Was I that bad?”

“No.  You weren’t ‘bad’, goofball.  You were amazing.  You’re always amazing.”

“WE’RE always amazing,” he corrects me and kisses my forehead.

I put the camera to the side.

“Did you really have the camera under the pillow just for that,” he asks.

“Yep.  I always wanted to see what we looked like two seconds later, when we fall backwards in exhaustion.”

“We look pretty damn good,” he says.

Still biting my lip, I nod in agreement.

It’s late and he’s going to be catching a 4am plane to California for work.  It’s nearly 2am at the time the photo is taken.  I roll onto my side, pulling him with me.  My back is pressed into his chest.  I can feel the soft tendrils of his furry chest tickling my sensitive skin on my back.  His arm is raised above my head…our fingers interlaced.  His other hand rests in the dip of my waist, his fingertips grazing my lower abdomen.  I can feel him breathing into my hair, heavier and heavier.  He murmurs something almost inaudible, but I caught the tale end of “I love you”.  I answer him by pressing my hips a bit harder into his.  His breathing slows and hard, heavy breaths give way to light, exhausted snores.  There is music playing in our bedroom, soft piano music playing low.  The piano sounds soft and low as the oboe that is playing over it sounds vaguely like a woman crying.

Until I realize, I am the woman crying.

You see, my heart will be taking to the sky in less than two hours.  The better half of my soul will be 3000 miles away from me.  There will be no one to have a midnight snack with.  No one to giggle with me at America’s Funniest Home Videos.  No one to eat dinner with.  No one to talk to in the middle of the cold dark night.  No one sharing the warmth of my bed.  I will be alone for a week as I am every month for one week a month and as always, it will break my heart yet again.

I miss him already so my heart knows to instinctively cry.  I sob inwardly so not to wake him of his precious hour of sleep before having to board a plane.  The alarm rings forty-five minutes later.  He slips out from under the blankets.  I feign sleep.  He kisses the top of my head and goes in for his shower.  I hear the water running and it hurts so much.  I reach out and grab my camera, still sitting on the edge of the bed, just under my pillow.  I flip through to the picture I took.  Look at that moment.  I can’t help but smile.  That sweet, sexy innocent moment now forever preserved in time.  I bite my lower lip to suppress what could either amount to a giggle or a choked up sob. 

He is packed and leaving.

“I love you baby,” he says.  “It will be a short week.  And, when I get home…we have our special Valentines Day weekend at the beach.  Just you, me, dinner at The Pearl and a balcony view of the ocean.”

“Can’t wait,” I whisper.

He kisses my lips softly.

“All the love in the world, Angel,” he says.

“Nothing but love, Baby,” I reply.  And with that, he’s gone.

Monday comes.  I wait for the Focus 52 prompt, excited to see what the challenge will be for the week.

“Our prompt this week…,” she writes, “why, it is Love, Baby!!”

Love, Baby?  I laugh.  I laugh so deep and hard that it almost hurts my belly.

I grab the picture and run to my blog.  Sometimes, fact is stranger than fiction and the story just writes itself.  Who would have thought that a picture would accompany it as well.  I “frame” the pic with a Polaroid type effect to make it look like an instant moment in time.  Something captured and clandestine.  Something sneaky and sexy…like the Polaroids you have hidden away in the bottom of a drawer somewhere. 

So there you have it.  The story of the photo.  The story of our loves…and nothing but Love, Baby.

Nothing but love.

Overcome…

This week has been incredibly overwhelming for me.  Personally, professionally and emotionally.  I am drained.  I am tired.  I am exasperated.  And more than anything…

I am overcome.

After many years, a friendship was ended…mutually, after nearly 40 years.  We didn’t decide to just release one another but rather, it ended in an incredibly ugly fashion with sarcasm, bitter words, name calling and scathing accusations.  She wasn’t listening to me.  I wasn’t listening to her.  We both struggled to be heard, but the louder the words became,  the more they fell on deaf ears.  This person was gone to me for a very long time.  From the time I was 14 years old actually.  We reunited back in 2002.  For six years, it was wonderful.  We shared each others homes, hearts and secrets.  She entered my life during a very volatile time with my husband (yes, once upon a time, things were not all hearts and flowers between the Princess and the Hotband.)  She got me through a lot of rough years.  I will always be appreciative of that.  Then, Facebook comes along.  Old friends enter the picture.  Worse yet, new friends enter the picture and slowly the chasm grows.  We start realizing how different we are.  Subtle changes at first give way to more blatant, outward changes.  Statements that would once be taken in jest were no longer amusing.  The differences become more noticeable, not only to us, but to our mutual friends.  Bickering begins.  Nit-picky small things at first slowly give way to all out lunges at each others throats.  Diplomacy is suddenly lost on both of us.  She is asking me to change who I am.  I am telling her accept me as I am.  She calls me a liar.  I call her varying degrees of the word “bitch”.  She tells me she is blocking me from her feed.  I eventually block her from my “friends list”.  Sarcastic nasty notes are exchanged and suddenly, it is 1980.  We are two teenage girls, snarling at one another in the school yard, throwing down our books as the crowd forms a circle around us.  Sides are chosen.  Friendships are irretrievably broken. Alliances are formed.

Only this time, there is no teacher to step in, to intervene.  We are left to our own devices, both of us too afraid to have this discussion by phone…so we are relegated to nasty Facebook messages saying things that we more than likely wouldn’t dare to say to each other if we were face to face.

It was exhausting.  And now, it is over.

I have opted not to discuss this with our mutual friends.  She, however, has been talking about this non-stop.  The chitter chatter of the spies still running back and forth between us, like little electrical synapses firing off, one after the other.  I just want to be free of it already.  I wanted this year to start differently rather than more of the same.

And while there is a part of me that is always going to mourn the loss of that friendship, I am trying to remember that there was a reason she walked into my life when she did after a 25 year separation.  I am grateful for the little girl I grew up with as much as I am grateful for the woman who held me in her arms as I sobbed over the pain my husband had caused me.  I would have loved to have shared another 40 years with her…but we grew up differently, our lives shaped by different events.  I am not who she remembers, nor who she wants me to be.  She is not who I remembered, nor who I wanted her to be.

But, for a short moment in time, we were everything to each other.  She held my hand in kindergarten sometimes.  She was always the braver and bolder one.  She had a silly laugh that carried over into her adult years, a giggle that would make you look into the eyes of this 40 year old woman and see the 6 year old within.  We couldn’t stop talking to one another and were placed on opposite sides of a classroom more times than I can count.  We crushed on the same boys.  She always won their hearts and I suppose I always envied that about her.  It always came so naturally for her.  I had to work so much harder to impress people.  Thus begun my extremely extroverted personality.  The outrageous things I would say and do.  She would always shake her curly head and laugh at me.  And I would smile, knowing my best friend approved of who I was, accepted me and loved me…even when I wasn’t in performance mode.  To everyone else, I was that crazy girl…but to her, I was just “CP”.  Or, as she put it, even in our 40’s, she would refer to me as…”my CP”.

And I was hers.  Unconditionally…and probably would have been for life had we not allowed the little things to pyramid to grandiose proportions and spin violently out of control.

In my heart, in my mind and in my soul…I will always remember the moment when we were 14 years old and hugging goodbye as my parents moved me out of the city and into the suburbs.  I never saw her again after that.  I will always remember her big brown eyes, her long curly hair and her lips, quivering from trying to hold back the tears of seeing a best friend disappear from her life.  That vision will help me handle what has happened between us, remove the ugliness that transpired on both our behalves and allow me to move forward into the new year without regrets or pain.

She will always be my very first best friend.  No amount of ugly will ever change that.

I’m willing to keep her there, in my heart, exactly that way.

Facebook Conversation with the Hotband.

As some of you may or may not know, my husband works in another state in the country four days out of the seven day week. This means that we rely very heavily on social media to stay in touch. Cellphones, computers, web cams and of course, Facebook. We spend a lot of time on there talking to one another and more importantly, staying connected to keep the love alive.

Yeah. Like we ever had a problem with THAT! Heh.

My husband loves to post bizarre pictures on Facebook. This works well, because I love to SAY inappropriate things on his Facebook wall. I do this for a couple of reasons. A) I know the things that I say utterly disgust my sister in law and her friend who are friends with my husband. This is my passive/aggressive way of saying “fuck off, dogfaces”. B) Any woman from my husbands past will VERY rapidly figure out that the Hotband’s wife is, in fact, mentally deranged. There will be no sweet, rekindling of the past love notes sent to my husband so long as they realize I am a danger to myself and others. Especially others.

Try me, bitches.

Anyway, my husband posts a picture of a fucking mountain goat, or maybe it’s a ram. Or a friggin’ ewe. Whatever. But, it’s dangling off an electrical wire in someones backyard. Obviously a photoshop deal (Yes, Blogger….photoshop IS a word. Be gone, red squiggly line!). My husband finds this picture to be a riot and posts it on his page. The following hilarity ensues:

Pee Ess: Names are obviously changed/blocked out for privacy. Most people don’t want you to know they are associated with me. Click on the pic to enlarge.

Tony B. likes this.

Eddie:
how??????????????????

Hotband:
LMFAO, I don’t know but would have loved to witness it

Kathy:
kinda reminds me of the dead squirrel I had hanging from my porch rafters…. two grown men in this house and I had to go scoop it out with a Walmart bag…lol… I’ll post the pic

Hotband:
Ha! Nice

Eddie:
a squirrel weighs what? 1 pound. This thing has to weigh like 40=60 pounds

Hotband:
Could be a photoshop

Kathy:
posted the squirrel and trust me it was real…

CP:
i wish someone would hang me naked from an electrical line. then pinata my ass a few times until i shit candy. that would be fucking sweet.

Eddie:
Hotband, now you’re gonna make me break out my CSI Orlando kit.

Hotband:
Babe WTF? LMFAO

CP:
fuck man. i just laughed so hard my tampon dislodged…*ROFLMAO*

Hotband:
Well, I guess it’s close enough to candy out of your ass

CP:
oh shit. i’m not even wearing a tampon.
wtf was that then?
*dials 911*

Hotband:
Maybe it was that candy after all?

Eddie:
omfg!!!!

CP:
i dunno. should i taste it? what if it’s sticky…and catches on the roof of my mouth? i may choke. i dunno…it’s really pretty suspicious looking. maybe i spontaneously aborted my liver through my vagina.

Hotband:
I say you freeze it and wait for me to get home, I’ll have a look at it first. If it’s edible, we can serve it up when your mom gets here.

CP
omfg. banner day. for once, i am without words.

*bows to the master*

Janet:
omg omg omg omg……

Over the bullshit…

I have been writing on this blog for nearly five years already. In that time, I have made some amazing friends. Ah-Mahz-ing. I have been to fabulous parties, traveled all over the country to meet bloggie friends and spent hours on the phone with various bloggers. It’s been a blast. It really has. I will always cherish those memories.

It’s time, however, to clean house.

I have discovered that some of the people I thought I adored, well, I don’t. I realized that it was their online “persona” that swept me away. The person they represented themselves to be online was the person I went wild for. And, while most people in my blog life are exactly what they purport themselves to be, there are an elite few who I have discovered sort of look down on others.

Those are the people that I feel I need to break away from.

I am the Queen of doing dumb fucking things. Hell, dive into my archives. I have five years of fucking painfully stupid as evidence there. I am a bright girl who puts herself into stupid situations. But, I also realized that, at one point, I was starting to become one of those elitists. I started judging people on what their blog was about. If you were not as talented a writer as I, well then, why on earth should I bother to read you? Not the dialogue diva that I am? Feh. Be gone with you. I would only comment on blogs that were of the highest caliber of writing possible.

One day, I read a comment on someone elses blog that said “I don’t read people who have a ‘blogspot’ domain.” Mind you, this reader used to read my blog religiously. Well, darlin’? I have been on Blogger since the day they opened up their pathetic doors. While everyone else ran to WordPress and then eventually, to their own URL’s, I didn’t. I wanted to stay put. I didn’t want to move my blog or put up a “You can find me HERE now” post. No. I want everything right here, where it began. In 20 years from now, you will still know where to find CP, because as long as Blogger stays up and running, I’ll be sitting here with it. I have my own domain name. Have had it for years. Just never had the desire to use it. I think keeping my blogger address keeps me a little humble, actually.

But, I seriously digress.

Since 2010, I am realizing that the people I genuinely cared about, the people who I thought about when I was offline, the same people who I would have ran to in a heartbeat if they needed me…well, they simply don’t feel the same. And, honestly, it’s okay. The need to be with the popular kids is something that I dispensed with back in Junior High School. I never wanted to be popular. I just wanted to have fun. So, whether it was with the geeks, the jocks, the cheers, the stoners, the nerds, whoever…as long as a good time was to be had, that is where I wanted to be.

Somewhere along the way, I skewed my view. I was with the big, popular bloggers. The BIG ones. The ones that EVERYONE read. And, if I took the time away from my popularity to leave a comment on your sorry ass weak blog, then wow…consider yourself honored.

When did “I” turn into “THAT”?

I faded out of the blogworld for awhile. It was a good move on my part. It did something for my humility and brought me back down to earth a little bit. Now, my blog is quiet. Peaceful. I think I prefer this. Now, how to extend it into my real life? It’s time to let a few people go. It’s time to remove my blogroll and some of the people on it. It’s time to remove a few people from Facebook too.

Somehow, the “Friends” button doesn’t apply to them any longer.

The older I am getting, the more I am discovering that everything I need is right under my roof. (Or under a roof in a nearby town). My husband. My son. My daughter and son in law. My grandchildren. One particular girlfriend of mine who always manages to make me laugh. And um, that’s pretty much where it ends.

So, with that in mind, housecleaning will be taking effect later this week.

I just moved into a new house in real life. In celebration of that, I think I will clean up this part of my life as well.

It’s 2010. Time to live a more productive, less toxic existence.

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?