Friday, December 31, 2010

From MJ June 6

Image by: selenavallejo

Hey Galoshes,
I have been sitting at MEPS for 4.5 hours now. I guess we are going to the airport around noon, but my flight doesn't leave until 5 tonight. I talked to Lily this morning. I guess the rumor about having to dye your hair is wrong. I talked to a girl who went to Jackson last summer. She said the drill sergeants are more like your friends, so I'm pretending I'm going to summer camp. She ended up having to go home though because she was over weight. She had slit option like me and was on her way to AIT. When they check our weight if we are over in pounds then they do a tape test and I had to get taped so when I was done and I passed I had to go to the guard office to get my orders and it was written down that I had to get a tape test. The guy was like "you had to get a tape test? YOU!" Then he said that the lady giving it to me must have just been insecure. I thought it was funny because I hate having to get tape instead of just being able to jump on the scale.

Well I'm going to write others now so talk to you later.


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

From MJ June 5

Image by: selenavallejo

Dear Galoshes,
I have only been on the bus for 10 minutes and I already miss you. I could see that you were being strong at the bus station. I know you wanted to cry harder. But I also know that if you had I would have never gotten on the bus. I'll be fine. I know I will. I'll be back before you know it.

I hate buses. The kid next to me keeps talking about how all his friends die so he doesn't like to make friends. It's sad, but I'm being to selfish about leaving home to care so it's a good thing he's not talking to me.

I want to come home. Someone please shut that kid up. He's now rambling stories about animal cruelty. To bad Lily's (my best friend at the time) not here. She'd put him in his place.

When we were sitting in the bus stop and you were getting water, dad was telling me how his head and stomach hurt and he didn't know it was going to be so hard. I'm going to take a nap, but I will talk to you again later. ♥ya!

Hey mom, It's 11p.m., I'm in my hotel room. My room mate's asleep, she wasn't very social so she didn't hang out with the guys and me. I love my soap. My hair is braided and my nails are as short as possible, I'm all ready to go. I forgot to call Lily, but I'll be up way before she goes to school so I can get a hold of her then. She leaves on Thursday.

There are lots of rumors going around about basic (training). One of the guys said we aren't aloud to write or receive mail for a month, I don't believe that. I'm pretty sure they make us write home as soon as we get there.

Make sure you give the dogs extra loves for me. I miss my rusty baby. I also heard that we have to dye our hair to it's natural color. I hope not! The sun will bleach it so hopefully I won't have to worry about it.

I don't know if I will be able to move to California anymore (I had dreams of going to University of Southern California). I don't think I could leave you again. Next summer when I go to AIT you and Mike will have to plan a vacation to Maryland because I get weekends off.

Tommy's (my boyfriend at the time) dad's in the army national guard. I guess every male in his family, and there are a lot, have gone into some branch of the military. So when I meet them, if I meet them, I will fit right in. Tommy's not going though. He's a good guy, you'd like him. He looks a LOT like Ryan (the boy my mom thought I would marry).
Image by: selenavallejo

When I looked at myself in the mirror tonight it felt like I was seeing a reflection of someone else. I don't know how to explain it, but it was weird. Well, I'm going to try and sleep now. I have a long day ahead of me and it starts at four.  The guys and I decided we are going to get ourselves pumped up on the plane so it should be a fun flight.  But knowing me I will probably just be writing letters.

Love you SO much!
~mommy's little girl~

Friday, December 24, 2010

Reasons Why We Do Things

Dear Readers,
The letters we are about to share with you are from the summer of 2000. I had just finished my junior year of high school and the day after school let out was leaving for basic training for the Amy National Guard. I was 17 years old and entered into a program that allowed me to go to basic over the summer, return for my senior year of high school, then go to Maryland for my AIT training (the schooling you go through to learn your specific military job).

MaryJanes Junior Year High School

It was the first time I had been away from home, ever. The longest Galoshes and I had ever been apart was just a few days while she went to visit a friend in Canada when I was 16.

I received a letter (sometimes two or three) a day from Galoshes. I think we both spent every free moment we had writing to each other.

You should also probably know that my interest in joining the military was also a desperate attempt for my father's approval. He was always saying that he wished he would have joined the military. Although we barely saw each other or spoke by the time I was 17, I hadn't fully given up on him yet. I don't know if I received a single letter from him while I was at basic training.

MaryJanes in Uniform

Perhaps we should have started our story here, past all of the dark times in our lives, but I don't think you would fully understand why we are the way we are without knowing some of what we have gone through.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


Image by:warmwhispers

Dear Readers,

The saying from the Wizard Of Oz, "There's No Place Like Home" would be the best way to summarize how meeting Mike {ski date} falling in love with him and moving into his home would be. For the very first time in my life, I felt like I was HOME! A place where I was intended to be. In a warm & cozy little house complete with a glowing fireplace, 2 big Labradors and most importantly a gentle, kind man which I adore. I had used the words, "I love you" to other men in my life, but it wasn't until Mike, that I really found the true meaning of those words.
Mike swings into action and makes sure that i have my dream setting by building me a big chicken coop and filling it with assorted pretty chickens for egg playing. Then no home is complete without a couple of baby sheep and a funny little goat, right!?
I will work on a little burro some time in the future. Mike had made a back yard swing for adults and we sit and swing, we don't have to say anything, the feelings for each other is understood and we just relax and swing. He is a tall man with big, wide shoulders and I nestle in under his arm. I am so at home here.

MaryJanes has requested something from me year after year after year........a new name. Since she was 2 years old, she has pestered me about her name. It is now {age 16} that I give in to her appeals. "OK, lets go take care of that!" I tell her as she once again asks. The smile on her face is a mixture of true victory and utter disbelief. "Really?" she replies. "Find out what needs to be done, and I get to approve the name before it is final" I tell her.
We are off to the court house with a mission of renaming my daughter to a more fitting name. If you can recall, she wasn't named for 5 days after being born, as I could not come up with a name that suited her. So, I suppose it is only right that she picks her own, she is an independent one!
She selects a new first and middle name and we make it legal. The smile on her face is contagious. In all honesty, it really didn't take long to adjust to using her new name.
With her name came another venture, she was asked to enter a Miss Teen Wisconsin pageant. This is something I had never planned for so she and I got a quick learning lesson in the whole operation of pageants.

MaryJanes, age 16, Miss Wisconsin Pageant Evening Gown

To summarize the events of it, I am glad she took part in it, it was a great confidence builder.
It was expensive!
Preparing and shopping for the event was time well spent, just the two of us.
I see now that when we shopped, I was steering her in to attire more geared for the Miss Wisconsin Pageant. It was very apparent when we got to the hotel the weekend of the event, she didn't look like a teen contestant. She was mistaken for a Miss Wisconsin contestant several times. And as it turns out, the judges were looking for a fun, zesty TEEN. Here I was trying to help her by telling her to be so confident and act professional, when I should have told her to just have fun and be a kid. I would have never made a good pageant mother! I am too competitive.
There is a funny story that comes from the whole experience, when MaryJanes turned 17 years old, that very day, she enlisted into the Army National Guard and they used her picture as a "poster child" to recruit other teens.
There on a big poster was my little girl's picture, with the words, ARMY National Guard written underneath. Mike and I did not try to talk MaryJanes out of enlisting, we told her that is was going to be challenging especially for a girlie girl. When the recruiter, Augie came to have her sign papers, I had to trust that she really wanted this. She would leave and be gone during the summer of her junior and senior year of high school for basic training. She was to do a split training, basic first then senior year of high school followed by her AIT training of photojournalist. I just had to trust that she knew what she was in for. I was proud and scared all at once.

And so that summer she got onto a bus and headed to South Carolina to experience a whole new life style........

Now Take On A Challenge.
Love, Galoshes

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Moving North

Image by: warmwhispers

Dear Readers,

My yearly rental contract was approaching a renewal soon. I had gotten a rental increase in the mail for the upcoming contract. I had paid my rent every month right on time and was hoping with that on my side, my rent would remain the same. So now I need to check the ads to see if I should move to a more affordable place or stay put and rearrange my budget to absorb the rent hike. MaryJanes is busy with her friends, high school and cheer-leading. There are times when I mark a date on the calendar that she and I will spend the night together. We would normally go to dinner, a movie or shopping. I found if I penciled it in, there could be no excuses of her having plans. I like to spend time with her and listen to what she has going on in her life. We have a really good open communication and I appreciate that.

As far as my dating life, that came to a screeching halt. At least the power dating did. I stopped my search after a few dates with my ski date. We are 45 minutes apart and MaryJanes is in school, so we write back and fourth allot. I make sure I mail him something every day. He and I have so much in common and both have old fashion views. I know I have found my soul mate. We date each other exclusively and I have told him the MJ comes first. No matter what, that is just the way it is. He completely understands.

MJ and I talk about looking for a new apartment and she is surprised that I didn't just ask her about moving to my ski guy's town. I explain to her that I wanted to get her through high school first. I didn't want to uproot her from her school and her friends. She only had three more years of school left. Recently she had broken up with "that boy" that I despised and was antsy to move on. She asked if I had planned on moving to my guys place. I told her, that yes, after she graduated. She said it was silly to wait, "lets move at the end of this school year" she announced."

Image by: Raceytay

After several talks with MJ, my sister, as well as my guy, that's just what happened. Did we move too fast, well technically I suppose so. But where my heart is concerned, no. It turned out to be the right thing.
MJ would be starting her sophomore year in a new school and she was excited about reinventing her self. She signed up right away for volley ball in order to help her fit in. She impressed me with her determination to get involved. Her father was not making any effort to get together with her. She was going to all of the volleyball practices and games yet he could only find time to make it to just one of them. I could see her looking in the audience to see if she could spot him. He continued to let her down, again and again.
Our divorce was final and I had a few issues with MJ's father not sticking to some of the agreements. He had gotten a girlfriend, a female version of himself, I thought they made for a perfect fit. Each of them loved the sound of their own voices. His girl friend was actually trying to get MJ's father involved with MJ. I appreciated that about her. And when MJ was having problems with a teacher that love to pick and choice her favorites and play God with grades, she was there to give me good advise about online coarse classes. That same teacher almost kept a nephew of mine from graduating right up until graduation day. She still teaches and I just can't understand why. She is a mean old broad! Honestly! Anyway, we enrolled MJ in the online studies for that subject and she aced the class. I bump into that teacher now and then, and don't seem to muster up the maturity to just let it all go. The word, "Bitch" always manages to slip out of my mouth. This is a down fall of mine, I am aware of this.

Now call your mother,

~Love, Galoshes

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Bad Boys

Image by: sixthandmain

Dear MaryJanes,

Why, Why, Why do you date "That Boy"??
There is nothing about this boy that I like. NOTHING!
There are so many boys that call and stop by to see if you are home,
you have so many options! The boy that came on his roller skates!!
Pick any of them, just get rid of that looser! What can you see in him?
He is a cocky, smart mouth, disrespectful brat!
I hate him!
I hate him!
I hate him!

Do you understand?

Now dump him!
~Love, Galoshes

P.S. I am running a few errands, I will be back in about 2 hours.
I baked some cupcakes if you want some.
I love you!

Monday, December 13, 2010


Dear Readers,

It is snowing on the day that I have my skiing date set up. The directions he has given, confused me when two country roads, with similar names met. I pull into a farm driveway and ask to use their phone. With the snow that is falling, I really don't want to be traveling around these back roads in search of his house. He picks up the phone and I embarrassly tell him I am a bit lost. {I have a terrible habit of not fully listening to directions.....I think it might stem back to my childhood, and tuning out the repetitive sentences my father would drill in to our heads.} What ever the reason, I confess, I may ask for directions, but from there, my ears don't hear much. I have a weird habit of acknowledging those directions though. Why do I even bother asking?
Anyway, he tells me that I am only a mile away and I find it easily knowing that I simply need to get back onto the road I was on and continue east.

{I was driving a truck at the time, I am a country farm girl at heart. I find that most of the dates that I have been on find this amusing that I prefer a truck to a car. I guess I wasn't aware that it was all that uncommon.}

I pull into his driveway and go the the sun porch door. He is tall, blond and with deep baby blue eyes. He gives me a very pleasant smile and welcomes me. His big yellow lab slumbers over to greet me as well. I can sense right away that they are both sweet and laid back souls. He shows me around his kitchen and living room and asks if I am ready to ski. He has borrowed a pair of skis and boots for me, how odd they they are a perfect fit. It's dark out so he switches on a few yard lights which make the new snow glisten. It is so pretty. He shows me how to move with the skis, and makes a path ahead of me so that I can follow without clearing snow. Thank God, as this is hard work!! We ski around a big open field and I start getting a work out. There is a allot to talk about and we ask each other allot of questions. I am trying to talk, ski and stay upright all at the same time, which is a challenge.
He senses that I am draining of energy and asks if I would like to snow mobile. "YES" I shout, "this is hard work!"
I love trying new things, and though I now know that I will never take up cross country skiing as a regular activity, I am glad I had the chance to try it.

MaryJanes and I had recently tried snow boarding a couple of weeks ahead of this date, and I can say for certain, I will do that again! It was a blast! {I kicked MJ's butt at it...."smurk:... she's such a girly girl!}

The snow has really started to come down hard when we jump on the snow mobile. It is almost impossible to see anything. I have to trust that he knows where it is safe to ride, as I am basically snow blinded. I am a daredevil, and love the thrill of a bit of danger, so this wild ride was right up my alley! He seems so calm and relaxed, that I really did not expect to be given such an exhilarating ride. We return to his house and he makes hot cocoa while we sit by an open fire and talk about a wide range of topics. I am keeping a metal check list of anything that I can not check off on my list. Nothing.

Image by: sixthandmain

With all the snow coming down, I figured I had better get home while the roads were still drivable. We agree that we both had a nice time and he asks me if he can call me again. I thank him for a nice night, and tell him that would be nice.

I drive home with many thoughts in my head. I confess, that he was not the bad boy type that I would normally be drawn to. Had I been younger, I would not have found him challenging enough. I knew this was not healthy thinking, and told myself that I wasn't looking for a bad boy, I was looking for a stable, loving man. It is hard to break cycles of this type. You have to listen to your brain, and not your impulses. Had I been a bit younger, I think I may have fallen back into my old ways, but I was going into this whole change of pathways with my eyes wide open.

Now what habit can you break?

Love ~ Galoshes

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Message

Image by: warmwhispers

Dear Readers,

A recording on my message box was lengthy as well as interesting. He sounded confident giving me information on just what kind of man he was. He said that he rode a Harley, though he wasn't the typical "Harley type." That was interesting as I love motorcycling, I ride my own bike and tend to be drawn to the older, more vintage bikes, Triumph, Ducati, some of the BMW's as well as Harley Davidson. He mentioned that he owns his own home, and shares it with his big, yellow lab. He is a non smoker, non to light drinker, will always live in the country and has a loving family. Everything that he said, fit right into what I was searching for. I listened to it a few times more. Later that night I placed a call to him. I find it interesting that he is from the same small town area that my sister's husband grew up. The same town that their campground was in. I have spent some many weekend through out my life in this town that was only 45 minutes away. Had he been there all this time? All this time in the same town that I have visiting all these years. Had I ever bumped into him? All these thoughts danced around in my head as I picked up the phone to call him that night.
His voice is low and I can sense that he is not hurried person. By this I mean that he sounds grounded, not easily pulled from his true self. A person content and relaxed in no big rush to get to the latest and greatest adventure. I like that.
As we talk, I feel comfortable with him, I feel relaxed myself. His voice is soothing, he tells me what he enjoys in life and asks me the same questions. He listens to me, and comments back as to what I have just said.

He has a good job which he has had for the past several years. He loves old, vintage trucks, motorcycles, hunting, fishing, reading as well as visiting with a few of his close friends. He does not do the 'night life' and has no interest in it. {enter a big sigh of relief here}
When I ran my ad I requested the ages five year my junior to five years my senior. He was four plus years my junior. Hey, you won't hear me complain, women tend to live longer then men. He has never been married, no children. Not that he hasn't wanted to, only because he hadn't met her yet. He tells me he will only marry that one person that was meant for him, and was not interested in marring anyone but her.

He asks me for a date, I except. He tells me that he would like to take me cross country skiing. This is a good thing, as I have never done this before and love to try new things. Since we will be skiing at his place, and I do not give out my address, I will drive to his house.

Image by: irenesuchocki

Everything sounds good, we will see what happens.

Now, get out and enjoy the snow.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Wish List

Image by: zuppaartista

Dear Readers,

MJ's grandmother on her Father's side and I used to talk about our ideal mates. She and I could sit for hours and chat about all the 'what ifs' in life. I was comfortable with her and didn't hold back as to telling her my dreams of finding "Mr. Lumber-Jack" someday. I considered her a very good confident as well as a close and a trusted friend. It was nice to have that, I was grateful for our relationship. But when I left MJ's father, she said and did a few things that insulted me, as well as hurt my feelings and we lost what we once had. I am guarded in my friendships, and when I feel stepped on or something happens that I feel the principle of the matter is just wrong, I end a relationship at a dead stop.. At least that is the way I was with girlfriends. It seems that the males in my life got more leeway with me.

Each day when I returned home from work, I dialed up the phone to listen to new messages. I let MJ listen to some of them and then got her thoughts on a few I was border line on calling back. I never gave my last name or the city I lived in at any time. When a date was arranged I met in a busy location to access  the date before going on each adventure. When I think back on it now, I suppose it was a bit risky even with those measures. Abductions were not as broadcast in the 90's as they are now, but I certainly was aware of them. I carried a long metal rod inside of my truck in the event that I felt threatened. Luckily each of the dates were with normal, nice guys.
So what was I looking for? We each have our own likes and dislikes. I was steadfast in my requirements.

1: Non smoking, non to light drinker, no drug use now or ever, future past or present.
2: God fearing.
3: Good with children and like able by them. Be a good influence on MJ!
4: Ok with me being independent. And be aware that I will more than likely bring home stray pets.
5: Have a nice smile.
6: Be gentle yet strong, I am fairly old fashion and like a traditional relationship, I will bake, cook and clean, he takes out the garbage, changes the oil in the cars, fixes needed things. Must be mechanical. I have fairly good mechanical knowledge, and wanted a man that knew more than me, thus I would feel more feminine...silly, but it's something I needed.
7: Be willing to try new things, explore, camp, fish, canoe and fish.
8: Be an out of doors lumber- jack kinda of guy. { ok, some of you are laughing, but that kind of guy suits me.}
9: Have a nice family, no bad news among the group.
10: Love big dogs, animals in general, live in the country and ride a motorcycle,
11: Own his own home pay his bills on time, be smart with money and if he is my soul mate, combine our money and have common goals.
12: Love me just the way I was, laugh at me, comfort me and be supportive of me, be thoughtful, caring and kind. Don't be macho.
13: Be protective, yet not controlling, there is a fine line.
14: Love passion.
There is always chemistry as well, you have to have it. I think MJ's father and I were attracted to each other for the most part, but the chemistry just wasn't there. I want chemistry!
That  is what I wanted. I knew I would find him some day, I just had to trust the plan that was in store for me.

Image by: Raceytay

I had always wanted to have more children, but at this point I was thinking 3 options:
A: Find my soul mate and be so in love with him that I just wanted to keep it the three of us.
B: Find my soul mate and have one more child.{MJ and I picked out names we liked}
C: If I don't find him, Get MJ through high school and college, then jump in a VW van and take off to unknown places and live life one day at a time. Just eat, breathe and live.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Moving On & Forward

Image by: irenesuchocki

Dear Readers,

I did not hire a lawyer, I simply wrote up an agreement making it plan and simple. I detailed an agreement between MJ's father and myself and made it so easy on him that other men would have thanked God for me being so generous. I just wanted out, split the equity that we had in the house, pay a low child support, keep her on his health insurance, we each get a life insurance policy for her and split the costs of MJ's collage {with a monetary cap}. Seems easy enough right!? He thought the agreement was a good one and agreed. This would later back fire in my face!

MJ and I stayed at the house for about a month so that I could get rent and security deposit money saved. I found a 2 bedroom apartment in town, very close to MJ's school. Town living would be new for me, but I was so excited for a fresh start. MJ was thrilled to be among the living and moving people!! {City life} I let MJ pick her room and we worked together to make it a home. I unpacked my sewing machine, craft items and started to craft again. I was getting Christmas gifts ready as I knew I wasn't going to be able to afford to buy allot. It felt good to sew and glue and create, I suppose it was therapy. I liked that our apartment was near the school as well as that it had washer and dryer in the kitchen. There was a sliding glass door out the dinning room onto a brick deck.

I was working as a veterinary assistant at the time and was promoted to personel manager for the chain of 5 vet clinics. I gave myself a quick lesson in payroll and took it on. I remember that the clinics all had so many computers, and it intimidated me. I still didn't have the whole grasp onto how the whole computer thing worked, and I was longing for the pen and paper days to be back.

MJ and I settled into our new life with smiles on our faces. We went to movies and made meals together. She started to date a boy that I did not like at all. I tried to tell her that he was bad news, but she wouldn't listen. There was just something about him that rubbed me the wrong way. I hoped that she would not follow in my foot steps by getting involved with a cocky boy!

As far as myself, I didn't waste time. I knew my soul mate was out there some where and I was bound and determined to find him. I sat down and wrote out every thing I wanted in a man and then made a list of everything that was not except able. My plan was easy, place an ad, written and recorded of things about me and what I was looking for. No game playing, no settling. Next step, weed out the recorded responses that I didn't like and then arrange a single date with any of the others. I called it power dating. If on the date I could not check each of the columns of what I was and wasn't looking for, then I simply told them thank you, but they weren't the one I was looking for. I stuck to that rule and began my search for my soul mate.

I don't know what it is about me attracting pilots? I dated 2 of them and from my own experience, they tend to be, well how do I say it???? Full of them selves! One of them had me fooled for a little while, he was tall dark and handsome. He ran his own business and was a smooth talker. I hadn't found anything that I couldn't check off until the day that he took me up in his plane. There we were flying and he let go of the stick and told me to fly the plane. You have got to be kidding me!!!?? Right!!?? Nope. He actually told me that it was up to me to fly the plane or we were going down. I must say, if I was not going to be able to check something off on my list, I would have preferred it to be on the ground.

Note to self: Add pilots to column of what I don't want. Check!
I don't care how tall, handsome, clever and rich he was, I was done with THAT kind of guy!

Now Will I Ever Find Him?

Love, Galoshes

Saturday, December 4, 2010


Dear Readers,

Shortly after the night from hell, his mother arranged an intervention. All of his family would be included. I kept MJ out of this, but was thrilled for the light on the subject and FINALLY someone in his family open to understanding that though he was some times a fun and entertaining person, he had a dark side to him when he drank. I felt a rush of relief to know that maybe I wasn't alone in the notion that MJ's father was an alcoholic and needed help. I had to secretly pack a weeks worth of clothes for MJ's father the day before the intervention took place. Arrangements had been made for him to be checked into a drug and alcohol rehab center, if he would consent to it. I had to trick him into a trip into the city by saying that we were going to see a mid day movie. When we pulled into the center he was so pissed off that I worried that he would not walk through the doors. He saw his relatives cars and was aware that the people that mattered most in his life we just inside those doors. Once inside, we each took turns reading our prepared letters that had been written to him.
I was hearing things about how he had effected others with his drinking and acts that he had done while under influence. These letters of information were all new news to me. I was taken back by the knowledge that they all knew that drinking was a problem in his life. Why after all these years did I feel like I was the outsider trying to deal with this issue on my own? Alcoholism runs in their family and they have seen first hand just how much it can tear a family apart.

He did not consent to checking himself in, this was no surprise to me. After that he did ease up on the drinking and requested to move closer to his job as the drive stressed him out. Stress, that is laughable, he had no idea what stress was. Being a young mother with a job that did not provide health insurance or a wage that would support herself and a child was stressful. Feeling like you had no options and had been raised with the notion that you work hard and don't ask for help is stressful. Being emotionally pulled back and fourth from one extreme to another from a man that was so much fun to goof around with when he was happy and sober to dealing with the moods of a man needing a drink, that was stressful. Being a child that wanted so badly just to have her father spend time with her, listen to her, watch her play and ask her about her dreams and ideas only to be shrugged off, now that is stressful. In the end, I am suckered in by his promises and we put the house and land up for sale and purchase another house a half an hour away. With the improvements made to house that we sold, we came out making some equity. Before the discussion of what to do with this money, $13,000.00 was secretly spent on a fixer upper airplane. Yes, you read this right, an airplane. He had gone through many expensive hobbies in the past, motorcycles, motorcycle racing, sky diving, baja VW ice racing, remote control RC smaller scale airplanes, scuba diving and adult, high tech go cart racing were among the list. But a full scale airplane took the cake.
I must say that when he buckled down and began to study for his pilots license, he was at least home more and not drinking. MJ was now of the age where she was involved with her friends and school functions. I found a little motorcycle for her to ride off rode back and fourth to her friend's houses.

MaryJanes with motorcycle

We lived out in the country again, and she dreamed of a day that she could live in town. She learned to tune her father out at this point and he took this to be disrespectful. He never did make the connection that respect is earned rather than instilled upon a person. We seemed to settle into an except able relationship of somewhere between roommates and friends. We both went to work, MJ got involved with the swim team as well as cheer-leading and life was
somewhat uneventful.

MaryJanes, freshman in high school

Then came the internet and a modem. I was instantly drawn to the whole communication on a screen. I chatted with new people from all over the world, people that found me funny and interesting. A whole new light bulb came on inside my head. For a couple of months I got lost in the world wide web. I basically checked out and became selfish with my time. I had found out that I had something to offer as a person when others actually listened. The time I spent learning how to use the computer and holding conversations with others online made me aware that I could muster up the courage to walk away from a man that I had invested so much time with.
The year was 1998 when I asked MJ's father to go outside and sit on the front porch with me. We sat quietly as I looked at him and told him that neither of us were living up to our full potentials together. I was not happy nor in love with him and I was letting him know that MJ and I were moving out to an apartment in town and I would be filing for a divorce. We did not argue or get upset with each other. We simple wished each other well. He hadn't been drinking in excess the last couple of years, I think he found confidence in himself by studying and
achieving his pilots license. I suppose this new self worth played a role in him easing off the bottle. But that selfish side of him remained, and it was never more evident when he purchased another airplane! Apparently he needed two. One to work on and one to fly.

The damage to MJ and his relationship had been done. Even without excessive drinking he just never could except his role as a father. He had no clue as to how to be a devoted husband or parent. He was a selfish person both sober and drunk, and I could now see that. I did not want to continue living with a man that did not know how to love MJ or myself. I wanted real love. The kind in of love that comes naturally and not forced.

MJ and I moved into a 2 bedroom apartment and started a whole new chapter in our lives.
I wish I hadn't taken so long to wake up to the point of seeing how destructive that man was on our lives. The only saving grave for me is knowing that through it all, I made sure that MJ knew that I loved her. I am quite certain that through all of the years, she knows that my love for her has been steady and constant.

So the lesson learned here for others in a like situation? Don't stay in a relationship for the sake of your children! Get help where ever you can. Pack your bags and run! If you think you are doing your children any favors by staying in a destructive relationship, you are wrong, just like I was. If there are people that care about you telling you to leave, listen to them. They see what is going on! Everyone told me to leave, they could see what I could not, or would not. MJ's father
was never going to change no matter how much love and devotion I could offer. It simply wasn't going to happen. And a note to myself, it wasn't about me or those 10 extra pounds. It was about him and his drinking and his selfish nature.

So what happens now?

Now We Will Find Out,

Love, Galoshes

Friday, December 3, 2010

Under The Influence

Image by: BonnieJones

Dear Readers,

While living in our first home, MJ's father was out on his cycle and returned home as MJ and I were cozy on the couch watching a movie and having popcorn. We heard him for miles away racing towards home. When he didn't walk in the front door for some time after returning, I got up to check on him. He was sitting on the front step, letting his face air in the wind. I could see that he was smashed. {drunk} He blew our agreement. I opened the door and told him how frustrated I was with him. He murr murred some stupid words trying to sound philosophical. I went back in and sat with MJ and proceeded to finish the movie. He walked in behind me after a few moments and went into a spare room off of the living room and laid on the floor. This was a room that he never went into and I think that he was so plastered he didn't even know where he had landed. It always amazes me that though he crashed a few motorcycles, he never was pulled over for drunk driving. He ran from the police so often that maybe that was his only saving? Back then, drunk driving was not so publicly shunned as it is now. I am embarrassed that I never called the police to report him, I should have.
The movie ended and MJ went off to bed, I told her she could sleep in my bed and that I would be up in a few minutes. In the mean time, her father was mumbling, "fat Lisa, Lisa is so fat" He continued to repeat this. To clarify, I was 5' 7" and a size 10 /11 at that time. To him, I was huge, he liked women size 2-6. He has a fast metabolism and wears off calories like no one else that I know. He never had to think about his weight and people with extra weight applaud the hell out of him. He classified anyone with more than 10 lbs extra as fat & lazy. I admit, I had extra weight, but by no means was I lazy!

He kept mumbling that phase over and over, "Lisa is fat...fat Lisa" My blood boiled as I sprang up, and pulled him up from his laying position, telling him to shut up. He followed me into the living room and was acting so stupid, I turned and shoved him hard. He fell into a large tree like plant, then struggled to get up. That was the first and only time I ever laid hands on him. He got up, bugged his eyes out and I could see the rage come over his face. He put his hands up to my shoulder and neck and squeezed me while pushing me backwards. This was not good. I turned for the phone to call for help, he grabbed the phone cord and ripped it out of the wall. I told him to get out, he refused. I shoved him as hard as I could causing him to fall down. I heard the thud as I walked away and made my way to the stairs. Once upstairs I sat on the bed next to MJ and I could hear him stomping up the stairs. He got to the bedroom and told MJ that her mother was going to jail. He grabbed my hair, pulled he out of the bed, drug me down the stairs and to the bottom. MJ ran behind, Oh my God. What was she seeing and how could I let this all happen? I yelled to her to go get in the car and lock the doors. Her father yelled, "You stay here!" She was so confused she didn't know what to do. I kept wondering why she wasn't listening to me. Why wouldn't she just do as I asked? I wonder if she remembers?
Her father shoved me into the bathroom, my arm was left out and he slammed the door onto it. I yelled again, "MJ, go to the car" This time she did as I asked. I pushed on the door and got out. MJ's father sat on kitchen floor and looked like such an idiot. I almost think he was so drunk that he had no clue as to what all had just taken place. I drove to my sisters and we stayed the night.
I called MJ's fathers folks before going to sleep and let them know what had happened.

The next morning his folks got up early and headed for our house. They found him at home, a large mark on his forehead from his fall to the ground, the house torn up, the phone on the floor and him looking all chipper and wondering what brought them there. He did not led on to any mishaps.
I am truly embarrassed by that whole experience. It is ugly and I never, in all of my wildest dreams would have thought that I would be involved in such a disgusting ordeal. If I had that night to do all over again, I would have walked out the door and never looked back. I let a drunk man's insults to get the best of me, and learned that it doesn't pay to defend your feelings with a intoxicated drunk! No one wins. I share this night with you, because I want you to fully understand how bad it can get living with some one that drinks too much and too often. You can try to love someone and hope that your love has magic powers so strong that it will conquer over the bottle. But it doesn't. I myself do not drink. I don't like the flavor the smell or the behavior it creates. I still to this day don't understand the whole addiction to it. To this day when I am out and about and walk past someone that reeks of drinking, I get sick to my stomach. Then I wonder who's live they create havoc on.

Now Drink Responsibly.
Love, Galoshes

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Extended Families

Image By: irenesuchocki

Dear Readers:

Winters with MJ's father were always more enjoyable to spend time with him. I guess to some degree he was "stuck" at home due to the weather and not free to jump on his "crotch rocket" of the year. [as he referred to his motorcycles} I held no strings for him, I did not question his travels and never apposed to his weekend adventures out on his own. Keeping in mind, we did not have cell phones or computers then, so I never had contact with him when he was away. When I think about it, he really had it good, if he had only settled into being a family man. I asked very little of him. I could do most handy projects myself {and always had MJ as a wonderful and willing assistant!} He took long weekend motorcycle trips with out any complaints from me. His money was HIS money, and for allot of the time we actually had fun together. He was a dare devil and I was an adventure junkie! When he would take off, I made sure that MJ and I did some exploring of our own. I loved going junking and spending time at my sister & brother in laws campground. MJ had a paying job there and was dependable at doing her job. She helped at the candy counter, by filling those little white candy bags full of the assorted candies that were pointed to through the glass jars. She kept track of the customer's expenses, took their money and gave change back. She was always helping keep an eye on the indoor pool and alerted one of us when kids were running around in the area. She did play ground pick up and went on garbage runs with her uncle, Roy. He let her drive the truck on the camp ground roads and taught her how to drive starting at age 5. By the time she was 8, she had a good handle on it. I suppose this is why she turned out to be an excellent driver! MJ was given the job running the golf shack the summer she was 8 years old. The campground had a mini golf coarse and she charged the customers .75 cents each and gave out the clubs and ball as well as weeding and keeping the golf coarse clean. Some might think this was allot for a kid to handle, but she enjoyed the power of being in charge and adored the payroll money she received every week. I liked that she was learning to be a productive person and excelling in math, a subject I was and still am so poor in. MJ had an extended family with my sister and they included her into many of their outings as if she were one of their own.

By no means were all of our years together as a couple bad. We did have some fun and MJ's father and I had life lessons that we taught each other. He helped me understand that my own father was not the brilliant man that he wanted his kids to think he was. He also helped me see that I was not as stupid as my father tried to convince me that I was. MJ's father showed me some fun times and I in turn did my best to make him feel that he had a home to come home to. I showered him with gifts and baked goodies for him. But most of all I kept him alive, honestly! He and I both know that he would be dead if it weren't for me.
I was always a willing passenger behind him on his motorcycles, even at 130 MPH. We went camping and fishing along with having nice visits with his folks. I think his family played a big role in why I stayed with him as long as I did. They were nice to be around and I felt that I was part of their family. I especially adored his father. That man was the father that I always wished I had. I told him that and he knew how fond I was of him. I held on for so many years, hoping his son with become more like him. My wishes never made reality, but I can say that his older brother turned out to be very much the man that their father was. How two boys can be raised within the same house hold and be so different amazes me.

Now Take Care Of Yourself,
Love, Galoshes