April 27: Catching Ladybugs

Good people are out there. Even in the business world. I found that out today. And am thankful for it.

I had a crazy day today. I normally am at home with the kids but today everyone went to school/daycare since I had a meeting with a child custody mediator as well as a potential signing for the house.

Highlights of the Morning:

  • This morning was good. I remember the kids listening well and getting dressed without too many problems.
  • Twin Husky, Twin Crazy, and Red were looking outside at some doves in our backyard. I should have taken that as a sign that today would be good one.
  • Red went with co-parent to daycare and she was happy to do so.
  • Big Bro scootered with the Motley Crew and I strolled with the Twins. I was actually surprised because at first I was packing the Twins in the van but he said that he wanted them to come along and for me to walk with him. Along the way, he held to the back of the pack and said he wanted to scoot along side of me. Towards the end he blasted past and beat me there at school.
  • I strolled the Twins and felt bad when Twin Husky said “No Margaritas”. When I strolled toward her house instead of taking our route home, he started to complain and whine a bit. I felt so bad. They are fine when they get there, but I know they would rather be with me. It hurts now to drop them off. I think we could do better by them.
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    Highlights of the Day:

  • The loan documents were still not ready. I was supposed to have signed these documents on Wednesday and closed by today. So technically I was close to breaking contract. The sellers were pressuring me to fund my portion of the deal but my loan broker was advising me under no circumstances do this since the docs were not ready. The sellers were considering putting the house back in “active” status and having an open house on Sunday…..
  • I spent some time responding to some legal stuff but didn’t have my heart in it…
  • I checked on work emails but there was nothing urgent that needed attention…
  • We went to child custody mediation and discussed the summer parenting schedule now that we know we have two locations and where they are. I feel good not particularly about the schedule but more about the progress. We have a plan. And it works with my move and my work schedule. This summer will be hard for the kids but I will do my best to be there for them.
  • After the meeting I learned about the reason for the hold up with the loan – nothing to do with me or my end – I’ve done everything I could do. But the underwriter needed another day to get the docs out. There was uncertainty as to what the sellers were going to do since our contract was expiring at 5 PM. I was talking with the agent and coordinator as I was driving back home at 4:30….
  • The Rest of the Day:

  • I went to pick up Red and co-parent went to pick up Big Bro and the Twins.
  • While I was picking up Red I received a phone call from the agent… the sellers and the agent now having all the information about the hold up in the loan decided to grant me an extension under the SAME terms of the prior contract!!! No changes in price, no rescinding of concessions, NO per diem charges for extra days of financing on their end! I couldn’t believe it. At the end of the day, they understood that the delay was NOT because of me, and that I was doing what I needed to in order to protect my family. I couldn’t believe it. I mean, these guys are business guys and they did not have to soften their hearts to a divorce of four small kids. But they did. And I am thankful for it. And I was on a speakerphone with them and thanked them and expressed my genuine gratitude for their decision and their patience. I reiterated my interest in their house and told them they made me a very happy woman today.
  • I ran around printing and signing the contract Addendum and went to some neighbors houses until I found someone with a scanner so I could email everything. The sellers were waiting.
  • Twin Crazy went potty and it was poop so she got two chocolate chips and everyone else got one chocolate chip. We all cheered for her and continued to cheer for her during dinner.
  • I told co-parent about the situation and my win. We had wine with pizza tonight.
  • Afterwards, I asked Big Bro if he wanted to go hunting for ladybugs. Me and him. And then I asked if he wanted someone else to come. He said Red. Then co-parent rallied so we all went out together. We had a great time hunting for ladybugs. I think we got about 18 not including the casualties (Twin Husky crushed some, and there were one or two that got smashed by the container lid). The kids had a great time and on the walk home a small part of me ached thinking that this might likely be one of the last times we do something happily as a family of six. I walked back as the sun was setting with my kids running ahead of me and cried a bit not out of sadness but out of thankfulness. Looking up at the sky thinking that there is someone up there looking out for me. That I am meant to be in that house with the kids. That I have worked for it all on my own and can make this happen for them.
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    So it was quite a day. I felt like I had my dukes up for most of it but these kids are worth fighting for. I feel like I am closer to reclaiming my life back and closer to building a home for my family. And yes, we are closer to causing the children a lot of pain and that kills me inside. But I am closer to providing a home for them – and yes, there is a part of me that is excited about going through the journey with them this summer even though it will be a huge challenge for all of us.

    Great weekend to all –
    – Mama K

    April 24: Hiding

    Chocolate Tuesday! It was a great morning.

    Highlights of the Morning and Commute:

  • Twin Crazy was busy going potty when I made it upstairs. She got changed in regular clothes so of course her Twin Husky wanted to get changed into clothes too. So I held his hand and went to his room to have him pick out some clothes. He liked the Owl shirt with a big moon and he picked it because of the moon circle.
  • There was an issue with Red while she was laying in bed. She was cranky. She woke up at 4 AM last night and was a bit out of it this morning. I couldn’t figure out why she was upset. At first I thought it was because Twin Husky was putting lego wheels in a blue cup and she wanted the wheels. So we talked about it and Twin Husky went over to her and put the wheels by her head. Whew!!! Twin Husky has some empathy!!! This was a big relief/milestone for ME this morning. That wasn’t the issue. Red swooped the lego wheels all over the floor in a fit. I went down with Twin Crazy and told Red I would be back.
  • Twin Crazy and Twin Husky were busy looking at the (alive) ladybugs while their breakfast was getting prepared.
  • I went back up to Red. She was on the floor. She was upset about something. I’m not sure what. I tried to talk with her. She pursed her lips shut. I asked her if she was mad, if she was sad, if something happened to get her upset. I asked her if she was mad at me or if there was something I did. She eventually asked me to carry her blanket down, and her drinking cup. Then the smile came. And her shoes. And her jacket. And Big Bro’s shoes. And Big Bro’s jacket. We were laughing now. Since I had all this stuff to carry down I demanded that I AT LEAST also hold her hand. She became playful. I held her hand, then she rejected my hand, so I wanted a finger, or at least an elbow. She was finally in a good mood.
  • We arrived in the kitchen to see that Big Bro was sitting in her seat. She ran to the couch upset again and said that she had nowhere to sit. I don’t understand how co-parent runs into the SAME issues day after day. There are some things that can be done to stop the issues from happening. I don’t know if he is trying tough love or if he honestly does not get how these kids are wired. So then I had to do musical chairs, asking Big Bro to scoot around and asking Twin Crazy to give up her stool for a chair. We then had an available stool at the spot where Red usually sits. She then smiled again and ran to her breakfast.
  • Chocolate was everywhere. The kids were happy. The ladybugs were still alive.
  • Vitamins!
  • Twin Husky wanted me to hold him. I like this part of his personality now. I like walking him around and talking to him and teaching him things.
  • I helped the kids with their shoes, socks.
  • Big Bro is presenting his homework today – a poster that talks about himself. I will be thinking of my shy son today.
  • Big Bro went off on his scooter. Twin drop off was cute. Red drop off was clingy.
  • I forgot my mobile phone at home but had time to swing by and pick it up.
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    I’m on the ferry and thinking about work. I have client work to do today and also a planning meeting from the last session that I think I will postpone until I have a chance to talk to our director. I don’t want to spend too much time on this effort if we don’t think there is a chance that it will go somewhere. I also have some follow up with the other sessions to complete; and a debrief from one of the meetings.

    I’m in good spirits this morning. This is a big week for me. I feel like it is the right action to take. There are big meetings this week related to the house purchase and also the divorce. I think both will be emotionally draining but I am hopeful that coming out the other side will make me happier. I can’t wait to have a set of keys in my hand. I can’t wait to build a home for the kids. I need to be there for them to make it easier for them so that will be my next area of focus. Making sure I am doing everything I can do to protect these kids during the separation, and to make it as easy as possible for them and letting them know that I am a rock and will be there for them no matter what. That I am their biggest fan and will love them everyday and hold them close to my heart everyday, no matter what.

    Highlights of My Working Day:

  • Spent time at the bank making sure my checks were clearing OK for the funding of my downpayment for the mortgage. The person helping me was wonderful. I showed him pictures of my kids and that seemed to really help.
  • I had a debrief relating to one of the conferences and I want to focus on sales efforts sooner rather than later due to long sales cycle time.
  • I sent out materials from the other conference
  • I cancelled a meeting with the other meeting since I need to connect with my own Director first before I spend too much time on it
  • I had a client meeting to confirm our approach. We have two weeks left for the project and I’m looking forward to its end.
  • I also spent time related to divorce stuff; good, I think.
  • I’m on the boat now and it is sunny. I will be working 1/2 day tomorrow and the rest of the day will be devoted to signing loan documents. I am so close. I feel good. But I still have a raging headache…. I think my body and my mind is STILL decompressing from last week’s work events and lack of sleep. I’m looking forward to this Thursday. My day freed up totally so I’m looking forward to doing something with the kids. I still miss them. I feel like I haven’t connected fully with them yet and am looking forward to that. I’m looking forward to tonight and cooking for them. And being with them. And not being pulled into a different direction – they are my priority and I want them to feel like they are.

    Dinner and Bedtime:

  • I picked up Red and she ran to me with the biggest smile on her face. Over the last few weeks they were doing “planting” projects and their work was on display at school. My little gardener.
  • I picked up Twins next. Twin Husky was cracking me up with his stance as he was staring down a yappety dog.
  • I picked up Big Bro last, assuming he would want to scooter back home. He did.
  • As I cooked the kids were playing and checking out the ladybugs. Twin Crazy went poop and pee-pee on the potty so everyone got to enjoy some chocolate chips.
  • After dinner Big Bro and I played “wall ball”. I cleaned up from dinner and started some laundry. Twin Husky helped me put the dirty clothes in the washer.
  • Upstairs the kids were having some issues. Particularly Big Bro. He didn’t want Daddy. His words. He stayed with me as I read to the Twins. We talked about the book. We sang songs. Twin Husky loves to sing. We did our kiss routine and they climbed into their cribs.
  • I gave Red a huge hug and asked her if she FELT loved. She gave me another huge hug.
  • Big Bro is downstairs with me hiding on the floor. He doesn’t want to leave me. I feel so bad for these kids. He’s asleep right now next to me – it took him 30 seconds to fall asleep.
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    I have such a headache. I’m looking forward to a good night’s sleep and tomorrow. 1/2 day work, big meetings behind me, and a stack of paperwork to sign for the HOUSE. 🙂

    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

    April 23: Ladybugs

    My first day back at work after a week-long work trip for the conferences that I was planning for so long. Relief. And it was great to reconnect with the children over the weekend. I’m in a good place.

    Highlights of the Morning:

  • Twin Husky pointed to the parts of his head where he wanted me to kiss him. Twin Crazy said “Nossssing [nothing]” when I asked her. We laughed that she didn’t want a kiss from me yet.
  • We investigated the ladybugs that we found on a walk from yesterday. They are in a habitat and we were careful to put in some grass and leaves and some water. The problem is that I think we put in too much water. One of the two ladybugs was upside down floating in the water with its little legs scrambling for dear life. I’m not sure how long he was there like that but we saved him…. only to have him roll around again and land back in the water. It will be a miracle if both ladybugs are still alive by the time we get home tonight.
  • Twin Husky was counting his fingers. I wish I caught it on video.
  • Red was great this morning. Came down dressed and ready to eat. But we ran out of cereal. I need to go shopping this week to replenish the necessities that we ran out of from last week.
  • Big Bro came down half dressed, but his hair done from a water spray bottle and a comb. He has a thick mound of hair. He looked great except for the hairstyle he gave himself. I suggested keeping in flat in the back, but brushing it and tassling it a bit up front to give him some spunk/style. But I said he looked great and very handsome and he welcomed my huge hug this morning.
  • Twin Husky wanted me to change his diaper this morning. He also wanted me to hold him and talk to him. I think this is his way of telling me that he missed me. He usually favors co-parent and I usually don’t get this much attention from him in the morning.
  • Twin Crazy pooped in the potty! We all ran into the bathroom to see it. We all cheered! So she received two chocolate chips and everyone else got one chocolate chip to celebrate. We are so proud of her.
  • I helped Big Bro with his socks and shoes (his “mommy time”) and Red with her shoes.
  • Big Bro went off with the Motley Crew and he decided to ride his scooter.
  • I said goodbye to the Twins and co-parent went to drop them off.
  • I took Red to school and they were happy to see me back. They said she did great but by around Wednesday she was showing signs of distress. A nightmare at nap, and Thursday and Friday she was quiet. But I am back now.
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    So I’m on the ferry thinking about some things I need to do at work. I am leading a debrief call for one of the three meetings we held last week. We are also interviewing a potential hire. I have to decompress from the other two big meetings and identify the take-aways/learnings/follow ups from each of them. And figure out a timeline to get the things done and can even start planning ahead – securing the date/location and also reaching out to known speakers to get them to Save The Date. I also have to catch up on the client project that I should NOT be involved with. We are wrapping up the project and I need to make sure that we end on a good note with the client.

    I also have work to do on a personal front. This is a big week for me. Signing loan documents for my very first house purchase and making sure that things are done on my end to make everything go smoothly. There are also other big meetings related to the divorce but I feel like I can focus on this now that the big conferences are behind me.

    I am excited about shopping for the house. I will not start to do this until I have keys in hand. I am excited about getting a fence and handrails to make the front and backyards safe for the kids. Lemon and organge trees to plant… along with blackberry bushes in the back of the property. A refrigerator. A washer and dryer. And eventually, over the next month, the furniture that we will use as a family. I want to have the kids involved in this and will seek advice from our child custody mediator the best way to introduce them to their new home. I am so excited and I want to share this excitement with the children. And hopefully the separation will be a bit easier for them if they feel comfortable and happy in their new home that they helped to create with me.

    Highlights of My Working Day:

  • I had a debrief conference call relating to the one “sell” meeting from last week. I took it in a coffee shop since I couldn’t get to my desk in time. There is more work to do and I’m not sure of the liklihood of success for any of it; I need to figure out go-forward plan since I don’t fully trust one of the folks we are working with… to be continued….
  • I interviewed a candidate that we are considering hiring. I like her.
  • I started to compile my thoughts on to-dos post meetings from last week. Things are looking good and I have a sense of what needs to be done.
  • Went out to lunch with the interview candidate and others on our team. It was DELICIOUS
  • I had another debrief regarding one of the conferences from last week. There are some changes that we want to do next time around relating on revenue models and other logistics. I’m feeling good with this one.
  • I had a meeting with our project team related to the client project. We have set forth a good go-forward plan for the next two weeks and will put our thoughts to paper for our touchpoint with the client tomorrow. We will need to put time against this to make this project successful.
  • I also had personal things to attend to today — this is a big week with closing on the house!!!!
  • So now I’m on a train headed to my monthly appointment with my doctor. I have a lot on my mind and talking with him is always very helpful for me. He helps me put things in focus and gives me encouragement to stay the course. This is a very busy time in my life with lots of ups and downs, but I believe the trajectory is on the way up. And I like testing these thoughts with him to make sure I’m still thinking rationally and realistically.

    I will hopefully get home in time to say goodnight to the kids and give them their hugs and be part of their nighttime routine. And later tonight I will focus on the divorce and also the things I will need to buy for my NEW HOUSE!!!!

    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

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