"Your words have no power to alter the truth. Your perception does not affect any reality but your own... it is your words and deeds that cast your reflection. "

~Luna Jade, musician

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Additional memories of Randolph heading into Cross Creek Drive

So here we were, in this big beautiful house. Four bedrooms, 2.5 baths and an actual garage. Something we should have been able to afford easily *IF* things had gone as planned. Which of course they didnt. I was working the morning care, parttime in the office and afterschool care. Basically I was gopher and not making a helluva lot at it , but it was something different so I didnt complain much. We never seemed to have enough money for anything that year. Alot went into the rent for the house and top things off we had to purchase a few things to make life easier.... namely a 'frige because the house didnt come with one. So here Im working all these hours for every penny I can get because Im hourly, right? We dont have enough money so what's the first thing you think to do? The one with the set hours should find a second job...even if it's just parttime to help out right? He worked 7am-3pm M-F. So who should be the one to get the second job? The school's in walking distance from the house so there isnt any transport issues in this case. No excuses. I offered to get a second job working weekends and some nights and he tells me no that he should be moking the money for the household. Well then get off your lazy ass and make more money. Ohhh no. He insisted at staying at the school until I was off so he could "get the next days lessons done and grade papers". Ok, so why in hell am I typing up all these tests, quizzes n stuff and still having to help grade papers after I get home and WHY am I having to keep his gradebook for him?? OK in his defense he had HORRID handwriting and couldnt keep a legible gradebook if he tried. He also could ever keep the grading straight either so I give you one guess who ended up in charge of figuring out the grades every 3 weeks for the interrim reports AND filling them out. This last bit wasnt just him asking me to it was the heads of the school begging me for it because my handwriting looked more professional (remember this word for a later entry).

For several weeks into the year, he had no problem bringing me to the laundrymat to get the clothes cleaned. When he realized it was going to be a 2 hour trip every week and all there was for him to do was sit and read....that's when the complaining started happening on that. I gave him the option of just leaving me there and I'd call when I was done, but ohhh no we couldnt have that. What he was hating was I wasnt slaving at home cooking or typing while we were there doing the wash. Within a coule months it was all of a sudden an inconvenience to go around the corner to do this every week and why dont we save money by doing them in the tub? So yet another chore was added of manually doing the laundry in the tub. Once in a great while he'd help by setting a batch to soak and manage to say he was doing a favor. Yeah right....setting them to soak and leaving them for me to rinse out and hang was some great favor. My poor hands were so chapped it was pathetic.

That first summer and it was OMG....no money coming in for me because I was hourly. No money for him either because of his contract. We had some put away for the lean months but not nearly enough because he was always skimming into the account for one reason or another. Loose change didnt last long with him as he was constantly sending a kid out of class to get him his diet coke and if he didnt have change he'd send them to me to get some. Yeah real productive there buddy. All that loose change could have paid for a week or two worth of groceries in the summer. It got to be a 6pack at LEAST of soda per day on work days. Anyhow, because I knew no money was going to be coming in, I went and got a job at one of the temp agencies. I could have gotten a permenant job through them but I had already made a commitment to go back to the school the following year. Unfortunately, all the jobs for the temp agency were in the business district across river. I ended up with a 3 day job at one company and a 2 week stint at another one. He'd bitch about driving me and the bitching got worse when the car started acting up. Damn thing would overheat in the Louisiana temps and there wasnt a blessed thing we could do about it. Yet it seemed to be all my fault. Yeah we had to drive but at least we had some funding coming in! After that the jobs dried up. There was one offer to work at this other place (and this one would have hired me as permenant if thngs went well) but it wasnt in a good section of town and Jim refused to take me there. Yep, yet again he cost me a chance at a job (and it would have paid well too!).

When school started up again in August, I was taken off the hourly payrate and shoved onto a contract. I would be making a little more than what I got the year before but that's only because I would be getting paid during the holidays as well now. Of course with the contract meant more work. I had all the jobs from before plus attendance AND I was designated to be Coach Greener's (Hap's) assistant. This was the year he was the disciplinarian for the highschool kids. Again the excuse was that my handwriting was more legible and therefore more professional. Very quickly it went from just handwriting the notices and giving them to him to deal with to actually having to make rounds and deliver them myself because he was conveniently "unavailable". Coaching was more important to him than this extra duty he'd been given. As a result, other duties of mine got pushed aside and yeah I got in trouble for not getting everything done. *sigh* With the task of delivering the notices came doing the detention listing as well.

A couple months into the new year, we discovered there was no way in hell we could keep up with the house lease payments. When we'd gotten it, it had been listed in the ads as a $700 a month payment. When we'd called we found out it was a typo and should have read $750. However, the landlord honored the typo and we'd gotten it for the $700 with advance notice that it would go up to $775 the next year. We realized there was no way we could handle that extra a month so we decided to move. Unfortunately, with all the money going out on rent, utilities and insurance for the car....we had nothing to fall back on (thank you idiot for not pulling a summer job). This meant no first and last months rent for an apartment. Our only choice would be to see if we could go to a month to month lease (which the landlord said no to) or move out to the streets. Thankfully, we had a friend in the school that kept her eyes out for us. She is about 3 months younger than my mom so it was an easy attachment for me. To this day I call he my southern momma. She took pity on us (or maybe it was just me...I dunno) and told us we could move in with her for awhile until we were on our feet. Thank you Lord for angels on earth. She lived in a 2 bedroom townhome at the time with her hubby, her pregnant daughter and her hubby (never thought I'd find someone worse than Jim but this one was it) and eventually one of her sons came back to live with his wife....and Jim and me in the mix. The son was never home because he worked on a boat on the river and so showed up only now n then. His wife was moved in because their apartment got broken into while she and her child had been home (her kid is southern momma's favorite grandkid) and "momma" said hell no bring em here. The daughter worked now and then for the school and her husband.....well he was as lazy if not lazier than Jim. We took and sold what we could from our house and stored the rest. The only money going out should have been the rent on the storage place right? I dont know how it was managed but it took us several months to come up with just the first payment (first and last month's rent). In the time that we were there, southern momma developed allergies because of our cats (particularly my long haired tuxedo girl named Fizzgig ). Needless to say, we ended up having to get a big cage and set them outside while we stayed. I'll tell you that was enough incentive for me to want out of there. I loved "momma" dearly but I couldnt have her suffering and damned if I was going to let my cats suffer for her allergy.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Memories of Randolph St

We didnt even last a full week in this new place before things were bugging him. Oh he was happy we moved and glad for a place so close to where he worked. What irritated him was the realization that his schedule and mine werent going to match up no way no how. I was supposed to train for a week during days to get me register ready (I ended up being ready to run one in less than 2 hours and was running it alone with no supervision in less than 3), as well as train me in the department I was going to be stocking by having me work some of the new displays (oh puh-leeez that's so old hat...I had the layout figured out in 10 minutes and had it set in 30...). They werent used to someone picking up so quickly...nor someone who was willing to help the stockers out. I had one of those boys tell me I couldnt help him because I was a female.....ohhh the new asshole I ripped him. I can just imagine how the nightshift would have been trying to work with a crew of guys. My luck, since it was a 24 hour store, I'd be relegated to cashier simply because I was a female. This really bothered the daylights out of me. To make things worse, I had the jerkboy at home pissing and moaning about how I was going to have to make sure to run on time because he had to pick me up and drop me home before he got to work (he'd need to be in at 630am and supposedly I wasnt getting off until 6am....but during Christmas, you always run late so I knew this was going to be an issue). Making matters worse, there wasnt public transport for me to fall back on (kinda like the position Im in now), just cabs (ka-ching). By the end of the week, I was so miserable that I was in tears by the time he picked me up. I cant believe I got that miserable that fast. He ended up getting what he wanted as I ended up taking a position in the office at the same school he going to be working for. What a mistake that was.

Dont get me wrong, I had some really good times at that school (none of which really involved him). I also had some bad moments. Most of the bad ones involving him of course. Inspite of the way he tried to keep a wedge between me and everyone else, I did manage to make some decent friends....although I never felt comfortable enough around them to just out and out tell everything. It wasnt like now where I say what I want and pretty much when the hell I want to. The school was small so whatever was said to one person made it to someone else pretty quick. In otherwords, everyone knew everyone else's business like it or not unless you kept your trap shut.

The first year was really rough. I was working at the school now and making half or less what I was making at WalMart. This year I was paid by the hour and only on a parttime basis. I was lucky if I saw $250 every other week. It wasnt so bad when school was in session, just very very tight. I liked the fact we lived so close to the school that I could walk home if I felt like it. When it was cooler out, that's precisely what I'd do. As the temperatures rose in spring...I'd stay at the school and sit in the sanctuary to read my Bible. My trips in midday back to my house were fewer and fewer because they found more and more for me to do. I was recruited for the afterschool program and so stopped going home because there wasnt any sense in going home and coming back later. When I stopped going home it got easier and easier to toss me in a classroom to substitute (glorified babysitting is all that is). They figured out pretty quick they got a twofer deal with us. This kind of sucked because if idiotboy ever needed to be away from class, guess who got stuck with it? All because I knew where they were in any given class and could just about teach the class (did I ever mention...I HATE HISTORY!!). This happened alot during football season as his job wasnt to just teach, but coach the junior varsity teams. When they were at an away game and *IF* they came back after midnight, then the students on the team and the cheerleaders AND the coaches (Jim and Hap) were allowed to come in 2 periods late. This sucked for me because since he was going, and they needed a monitor for the cheerleaders...I had to go. Why? Because Jim was there...it just made sense. Yet I still HAD to be to work at 530am because I also managed to get drafted for before care (so parents could drop off their darlings at 6am for a small fee and not have to worry about them not getting to school on time). I give you one guess how much sleep I got on a nightly basis with all that and the fact Jim insisted that I type all his crap up for his classes "because I was so much faster and accurate". Needless to say a few weeks every year I was busy typing up everything for all classes for the entire marking period. My Christmas was shot to hell because I spent the entire 2 weeks we had off typing the whole semester up (well why not, didnt have any money to go anywhere anyhow...).

After a couple months at the school, he started getting pissy with me on a regular basis. I had to be in at 530am and never got out until after 6pm. Sometimes it was later if the parents "forgot" their kids. There were times I was there as late as 630 or 7pm. Id get home and have to cook and clean and damn if I didnt type up something (pop quizzes...whatever) for him that night I'd catch hell (Lord help me if I got angry because then I was a bad wife). Yet he wouldnt pitch in and cook or at least do the dishes so I could do this "favor" for him. Many nights it was after midnight before I got to bed....only to be up at 530am to place a phone call (I had a soft spot for this one senior student who had to take asthma treatments and I was trying hard to help him get through and actually graduate that year) and then get ready for the day. Somedays I felt like a gerbil in one of those plastic balls....had to keep moving and no escape.

I remember one night I wasnt required to go on an away trip because they were leaving mid-day and I was needed more to cover his classes than to chaperone the girls (they sent one of the other female teachers that didnt have any classes to teach the last 2 periods of the schoolday). Would have made more sense to have her teach as she was qualified to be teaching and I wasnt, but that's ok. I got home after a long day and made supper, cleaned then typed for a bit. It must have been 9 or 10pm when I crawled up to bed. As I was getting under my sheets, I realized that I had thrown the deadbolt (seems to be a pattern with us) and I knew we had no key for it. I was so comfy and thought I'd hear the doorbell if it rang as the chime was right outside the bedroom door. It was loud enough it had woken me up every other time. Well not this night. I was so dead tired that I heard absolutely nothing. Well not at first. The phone and answering machine were down stairs in the front office while our room was the master suite in the back and up stairs. Between the bed and the phone was a door (which was kept closed in the winter to help with heating and to keep the cats out of the Christmas tree) and the staircase. Even with the ringer full blast, it was seldom you'd hear the phone ring. Well he got home this night around midnight or so and found the dead bolt thrown and he couldnt get in. He tried ringing the doorbell.....repeatedly. I heard nothing. Now mind you if I had any idea how exhausted I was I would have hauled my butt downstairs when I thought of it and unbolted it in the first place. He rang and rang and still I heard nothing. He ended up going to a payphone and calling. All he got was the answering machine. He came home and rang some more (and swearing at this point Im sure)...then back to the payphone and swore at me more there on the machine. How do I know? Because I listened to the messages after (the words stupid bitch came into play on this occasion). Now mind you, how foolish would he have felt if I had been in the house injured and he'd sworn on the damn phone? He tried throwing rocks up at the windows to get my attention. It would have helped if he threw them at the right window....he had aimed for the front bedroom windows thinking they were the master bedroom. The cats, I guess, had been going nuts with all the activity out there....and I never heard them racing around in a panic. One of the neighbors heard all the ruckus and called the cops (maybe they shoulda kept him in the firstplace...). What can I say, when Im tired I sleep!! Next thing I know I hear this really really loud noise coming from outside. So I get up and wander down the stairs...hearing this loud talking and boy it's got me pissed to be up . When I got downstairs there were lights everywhere. So I go in the office and I hear some female on a megaphone (yeah it took lights and a megaphone to wake me...I was REALLY TIRED) calling my name asking for me to step outside. Not only were they using the megaphone but they were broadcasting it into their phone so the voice was being broadcast into the house over the answering machine's speakers. I stepped outside and had a cop in my face...did I know this man? I stepped a bit farther out and there Jim was....a cop on each arm holding him back from the door. I remember muttering...yeah that's my husband...I must have thrown the dead bolt on accident. They let him go. He managed to hide his anger til he got in the house and the door was closed. Yeah...I caught hell for throwing the bolt and for embarrassing him like that. Hey, he knew when he married me I was a sound sleeper. The next day it was like nothing happened. Not even an apology for swearing at me on the phone. The worst part of it? The fact he had his driver's liscence proving that he belonged there the cops offered to help him break in to his own house. They made this offer BEFORE trying to get ahold of me. What would have happened if I had thrown his ass out because of a major fight and hadnt had a chance to call them yet?

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Final Days at Peck Road

Like I said in my other entry, the game plan was to stay with WalMart as that would give us a huge leg up. He'd be making a bit more than me (for a change) and things should be fine right? Anyhow, on the trip back to NY I was looking over the app for the school and at least considering a parttime position on my off days to help out with phones or filing. I kind of put it in the back of my mind for future reference.

When we got back, I had to let my lead over at Home Depot know there wasnt a chance as hubby finally got a job and it was out of state. She was dissappointed but very happy for me at the same time. I let my bosses know that I had to move and would like a transfer to a store in the area where we'd be. They told me I had to call and talk to the manager down there, if it was ok with him, it was ok by them. The manager in the Marrero (Mah- rare- roh), La store. He really balked at paying me the amount I was making in NY but eventually said yes because I was willing to work nights and he needed another person on receiving.

We had 3 weeks before we had to be in Louisiana for dingbat's job so in the last 2 weeks at WalMart, I'd come home with boxes upon boxes and pack. We had a few arguements on what could go and what was to be pitched (books I can understand...but cardboard squares you've been hanging on to for years and years because you use them for "elections" and "war simulations" should become BBQ fodder). I ended up having to sacrifice our sofa (which was in awesome shape and was gotten for free) to make room for some of his shit because he "simply couldnt live without it". A 24' UHaul trailor PACKED solid ceiling to floor (I worked in receiving for a while remember...I do know how to pack a truck and not waste space), front (even in the overhang over the cab) to back and 1/3 of it was easily his books, videos and games. We even had to load the car up (it was being towed behind)...yes he had that much stuff. We did end up getting a donation from his folks of the white wicker loveseat and chair set so we'd at least have SOMETHING to sit on in the livingroom.

So I'd work all day and then pack for a few hours each night. I got as much as I could done each day. Would it surprise you if I said that easily 1 box out of every 5 I packed managed to get unpacked the next day because there was something he simply could NOT do without? No, I didnt think you'd be surprised. Oh, and NO he didnt help pack until the last couple days at which time we were in panic pack mode. What, you're not surprised there either?

The trip was rather uneventful. He was happy he had a real job and so there wasnt much fighting. There wasnt time for fighting anyhow because alot of the time I was either reading out loud (Star Trek books, something we both seemed to enjoy reading) or sleeping. I travel real well so long as we stop every couple hours or so to stretch and grab a break and then shut up so I can sleep. I simply dont stay awake during long trips. It took us 3 days to get to our new home. We even had mail waiting on us when we arrived. You'd think with all the schmoozing the headmaster was doing that we'd have some help at the house when we arrived. Ummm nope. Not a soul showed up to help out. Yeah. Some southern hospitality there. It was hot as hell that day too. The kind of day you step outside and think you stepped into a pool but without the benefit of the cooling sensation. Needless to say we ended up unpacking after the sun went down. We had the UHaul rented (thanks to his dad) for a week so we got half done the first night and the rest the next day. When did help arrive? The next day when all the boxes were unloaded and we had to return the truck.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

More Peck Rd memories

The first year here was hard. Neither of us was used to checking tanks to make sure we had enough fuel to do things. One of his other chores besides keeping the litter clean and taking out the trash was to keep an eye on the fuel tanks and make sure to order a shipment in enough time. When the colder weather hit, I reminded him that we'd be going through the propane faster so he needed to keep a real good eye on it. Of course, I came across as a nag and a half. I simply didnt want to be cold at anytime during the winter, is that too much to ask? And NO...I wasnt the one who insisted on running the heat at 80 degrees in the winter. In fact, I was quite the opposite. I didnt want to be cold, but I also didnt want to roast to death. When I'd get cleaning in the house, I would have the heat nearly off in the dead of winter (and I'd only be in a tank, shorts and barefeet). He'd come home and bitch because the trailor was freezing. He'd crank the heat up to 80 and damned if it didnt climb 5 degrees and it'd be too hot for me to want to do anything....then he'd bitch because I refused to do anything else. Well excuse me, I'd been cleaning all damn day and do you THINK he'd notice the walls were waxed and everything polished nicely? Nope, just the fact the sofa was in the middle of the livingroom and the tv was unhooked. *shakes head*. Oh and NO he wouldnt pitch in to help finish the last little bit of cleaning up.

This first Christmas, I had asked him not the week before to make sure we had enough propane as the tank had only been half full when we rented the place. There had been some really cold weather this particular week. What do I get but the "We just moved in a month or so ago and there was half a tank, we'll be fine". MMhhmm. Well..Christmas Eve came up and I'd been cooking all day to bring stuff to one of his sisters' house for supper the next day. I'd had the oven going from noon til 10pm making cookies and a pie. As such we'd had the heat turned down because the trailor was cozy. When I was done around 10pm or so, we stayed up another hour or so. The trailor was so warm it never dawned on us that the heat didnt kick in later. We crawled into bed that night and I asked him, "did you turn the heat on at all?" It was getting quite cold in there. He couldnt remember and said maybe I should check. We wont go into the fact that the bed was against the wall and he was on the outer edge so he should have checked....ohh no...make me get out of the warm bed after working all day at the oven. I had to climb out of the covers and down to the foot of the bed to get out and then he had the nerve to bitch because I let the cold air in the bed. Stupid shit. I went out to check and turned the heat up to 90 just to get it to kick in.....it didnt kick in. Not at all. We were out of kerosene on Christmas Eve because someone hadnt done a chore. We hadnt noticed it because I'd been running the oven (propane) all day and it had managed to heat the trailor nicely. Of course, somehow, I was to blame for this (not one bit of it was his fault).

I remember taking up painting plaster pieces sometime while we were in the trailor. I know it wasnt the first year as we were still in the bedroom located in the middle of the trailor and not the big one in back. It must have been the summer of '93. We'd gone to Ames (kind of like a KMart or WalMart) for something or other and I'd seen these 2 plaster pieces that were absolutely adorable. They came as a kit... piece, paint brushes and paints. I had bought a house with Santa and his reindeer on the roof called Santa's Last Stop and another with like 7 Santas in various versions of the Old English Santa costuming. The last one was called Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho and Ho. These two pieces brought me such delight as I would sit on the edge of our bed with the pieces on a folding table and paint for hours. I found I would relax a bit as I painted as my mind had to be on the instructions and not worrying about other stuff, otherwise I'd make a mistake. The pieces were big enough that once I finished one color I could move to the next as the first color was dry enough to handle. I also learned an appreciation for Yanni about this time as I could play his music while I painted and it wouldnt be distracting like some of the other stuff I'd listen to (cant really sing to Yanni...just hum...no words to distract). The first couple days I chose to paint, he was good and left me alone. Day three though brought him wandering back every few minutes to "check on me". Yeah, like I was going to get in trouble sitting there quietly painting. It's because he no longer had an audience...I know this.

It seemed that our whole time together we got challenged. When an opportunity became available for one, an equal opportunity would come for the other. Never were they things that would go hand in hand. So we would always sit down and decide which opportunity would be the better one to follow. Nine times out of ten, mine would be that untaken road. It was always one thing or another....not enough money, or he was in school and I needed a certain schedule so I could work...whatever. While we were in the trailor, WalMart opened a store nearer to where we were living. I needed a certain schedule due to his schooling because of trasportation issues. If I had known alot of my friends were headed that way, I certainly would have applied for a position over in that store because any one of them would have given me a ride. Thankfully, the opportunity presented itself again a few months later when the girl who had the position I was wanting was leaving the company. I told Jim I was going to go for it. It would at least save us on gas. He wasnt fond of this turn of events but when I came out of the interview not only with the job, but a raise to boot, he had no arguement there. This raise didnt help us much as he still wasnt teaching and was only pulling parttime jobs...not even attempting to get fulltime work ("because he wanted to be available in case a school called for him to sub" *ugh*).

While I was at this store, he decided that he was going to go through this company he'd read about in one of his Christian magazines. The company was called InterChristo and what they did was match you up with a list of Christian organizations that would fit with your profile. You'd then take your list and send them your resume and see if you could get a job with them. Ok, it was a bit pricey but well worth the money considering they gave you a packet of several pages of leads. We (yes I said we as we all know WHO wrote the letters and sent the resumes) sent out to nearly every school on his list. At this point I was becoming miserable at WalMart. We'd had some management changes *again* and I was tired of showing them who boss of the backroom was (and it wasnt them). Between that and Jim moping and making my homelife miserable, I was considering a change of job myself. I had a lead over at the local Home Depot and was considering heading that way as it would have meant an extra $2/hr just to start...as a cashier mind you. The day I decided that I wanted to go for it, I talked to Jim on the way home and let him know what I knew about the position and he agreed that maybe the change would be good. The minute we got home all that changed as there was a message on the answering machine. At first we thought it was the ole lady (the ole lady was a ghost in the trailor...she was harmless thank goodness and settled down when I told her firmly it was my place now, dammit. She was welcome to stay as long as she left me and my stuff alone) playing around again as she'd taken to messing with that machine regularly. Surprise surprise there was a hit from one of the schools in Louisiana. The headmaster wanted to talk to Jim and left us a school number and home number. Jim said he'd "call tomorrow". I told him hell no...this man left a HOME number, obviously he wants to talk to you NOW. God Jim could be so damn thick. Anyhow he called and talked to the headmaster and the guy wanted to set up an interview. So now we had a decision, again. I had to take a 2 week vacation because idiotboy didnt want to go alone...he was afraid of getting lost. Ugh...that's what a map and directions are for. Not that it matters as I dont drive and even if I did he'd need the car to get there. Although there were friends at the store that would have dropped me off home.

When we got down to Louisiana the first time, we stayed with the headmaster and his wife for 3 days. They were so kind as to allow us the the master suite because there was a bathroom attached and we'd have some privacy. Jim pretty much had the job when he walked in the front doors to the school. He'd shown his commitment just by coming clear across the country to make this meeting. So it fell on me to find us a place to live....while he went out and schmoozed with the headmaster. All I wanted to say was priorities guys!! You'll have all this time to go fishing n stuff later. Surprisingly enough, I found us a place to live that would allow us to bring all our cats (we had 4 at the time). It was going to cost an arm and leg per month, but the lease was only for a year and I'd still be with WalMart. At least that is what the plan was....

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Heritage Park to Peck Road

After we got married, things calmed down for a bit. The only arguments we had were still over money but they werent as frequent there for awhile. I think part of the problem is that I was making substantially more than him (but not enough where I could have lived on my own if I had attempted it). He had his masters degree at this point and damned if he could find a teaching job. History teachers, unfortunately, seem to be around forever. When they *finally* retire, the schools look for someone with a proven track record. Although he had paperwork saying he COULD teach, he didnt have much in the lines of field experience. All he had was the student teaching and by the time he finished that, there wasnt any openings. So where was he working? In jobs like the ticket booth and Taco Bell (both were only parttime jobs)....definitely places he didnt want to be because he couldnt utilize his education. Meanwhile where was I? I was working an 8-4 M-F making one third again what he was...and I didnt have to deal with customers (I was at WalMart by the time we moved from Heritage Park). Yes, again with that little jealousy monster because the grass in my job looked greener. The one good thing that came out of his theatre job was that the lady who managed the place owned a trailor on an acre plot of land nextdoor to her own property. Well it was good because we didnt need to worry about neighbors and it had some property that we were told we could do nearly anything to.

The trailor would have been perfect for one person or two with minimal clutter. The key word there is minimal. With all the stuff he had, there was not much room for any of my items. All his books (and many were rare editions) took up the spare bedroom and the backporch. The rest of his junk took up the shed out back. Thank goodness I wasnt really collecting anything at this point.

Other than his clutter...the trailor was quite pretty inside. I loved the fact it was all wood inside (all the rooms had a light colored panelling) because it glowed so nicely when everything was polished. I used the china hutch in the dining area for my wedding showcase (hey, I didnt have any china) and during Christmases I lined under the china cupboard with white lights and used the counter area for my all white nativity. It looked so pretty.

I remember the day we moved in. Unfortunately, we'd picked a day when there was a huge football game on the television and we couldnt get any of his family to come out and help get things at least unloaded. We did manage to get G* out to help us load and unload. Poor guy had forgetten he'd promised to help and got himself quite pickled the night before so he had this wretched hangover while trying to help us. His family showed up around halftime to help unload the truck. The only things left to do were get the furniture into the trailor. Everything else was done (short of unpacking) at that point. Im picky about how things are unpacked so there was nothing else left to do. All I could think was "Gee thanks...if ya showed up earlier we'd have gotten more done faster.... could have been done BEFORE the game and all watched together...". Oh well.

Things went well for several weeks. They always did right after a move as we were trying to get used to a new place. Then the usual started up about finances. The trailor was cheaper so it shouldnt have been so bad right? Wrong. I told him once we moved we'd need to account for trash pickup, water useage (this one was a big fight especially in the summer when he insisted on 2 showers daily), propane for the stove and kerosene costs in the winter for heating. Of course, it became my fault that the money was moving out as fast if not faster than it came in. Do you think he'd get a second job to help out (he was only working a parttime one...20 hrs a week at the time) so we could afford things? Nope. I suggested me getting a second job a few times. I could have easily done it because my hours were the same 7am-4pm, M-F. I was told no as I was already pulling 40 hr weeks that he should be the one to get the second job. That would be the end of the discussion. When I say end, I mean absolute end as he didnt want me pulling the extra work (I think it's because he didnt want to have to drive me anywhere else plus I out earned him as it was) BUT YET he wouldnt look for the extra job to help out either. There were months when we hardly had anything to eat in the house...the cats actually ate better than we did. Peanut butter sandwiches for lunch, toast for breakfast and noodles-butter-salt and pepper for supper. Yes, that same menu for the whole damn month....every.single.day.

His locking himself away never faded either. Many times I'd sit in the livingroom, alone, for hours on end. He'd never go in his room during hours when he knew there was something I'd like to watch on the tv...always when nothing at all was on. Then I'd find something and actually get interested in it and suddenly his "alone time" would change so I couldnt watch that...something more important would be on. *sigh* We fought enough as it was, why bother fighting over something as trivial as the tv programming? My only respite at this location was that he was going back to school 2 nights a week for a degree in Special Education. The reason why he was going back is because he couldnt find a teaching job in history and all he could find even close to it was teaching in a GED type program for the East Syracuse Minoa school district (yet again a parttime job). Besides....his daddy was paying for it. After a couple semesters, he got a certified letter stating he shouldnt bother wasting the time or money coming back as he wasnt cutting the grade. He took this real hard. Somehow this was my fault too. Maybe it was because I had a steady and decent job making a fairly good wage all on just a high school degree and he was getting bubkuss on his master's. Is this really supposed to be my fault that I did well and he didnt? Not my fault he didnt have the drive to really succeed at things. He didnt even cut it as a salesman for a perfume company. Why? Because he didnt want to put the work into it. Well not unless I was doing it too. If I was, then he'd bitch I outsold him or something else and find a way to let me do it all by myself while he sat back and reaped the profits.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

More Deerfield Park memories...planning a wedding

By the time we'd gotten into the apartment, he'd proposed to me. The only thing we had at the time use as an engagement ring was the one my gramma had given me for my graduation. The only thing he'd put towards it was the cost of resizing it ($10). The bands were purchased by me a couple months before the wedding. I remember dad being upset that Jim hadnt bothered to call and ask for permission for my hand as is custom. Dad had to find out from me. My mom was happy because she was finally going to be making the wedding dress that she'd been dying to make. There was alot of back and forth with my mom with materials, styles and sizing. There didnt seem to be as much fighting at this point as I was totally consumed on making everything just perfect and when I had my questions answered, he'd slip off to his room to be alone. Unfortunately, Im a champagne taste and we were on a cheapo bogo (buy one get one free) store brand soda only type budget. Much of what I had was handmade, which is fine. The quality of the supplies I had to work with was debateable to be honest but it was the best I could get with what I had. I made my bouquet, the maid of honor's, the arm bouquets for the bridesmaids (3), the basket for the flower girl, and the boutonnieres (8).

He wasnt thrilled with having to give up his room for a month though. My folks came in the week prior to the wedding as mom had to do some last minute fittings on the dress. I seem to remember that he was on his best behavior for the ~most~ part. It's either he was or I've totally blocked any unpleasantness out at this point. I dont recall being made overly miserable though. There was one episode while my folks were there though that came to mind the other day while I was writing about the time he stepped on me. That one was the first and not the last time I got hurt by him. Both were accidents...as they were done while he was dreaming. This particular one we had gone to bed and my folks were sleeping in the livingroom. I had suggested the bed for them but they'd said no, they brought stuff so they could "camp out" (Im glad they did as Jim gave me hell for just suggesting it, cant imagine what he would have said if they'd said yes to the bed). I dont recall him reading anything much before bed, but I could be mistaken. This particular night he had a humdinger of a nightmare and unlike most nights when he yelled out first, there was nothing but silence. All of a sudden I woke up crying and having trouble breathing. To say I was disoriented would be an understatement. I had no clue why I was crying and damn why couldnt I breathe? Then I realized his arm was over my chest with a friggin deathgrip on the other side of the mattress. Next thing I remember, mom was at my door knocking and asking if I was ok. I seem to remember saying yes, I think so. "Are you sure starshine?" "Yes mom, Im ok. I love you." After she left the door I addressed the situation on hand and asked him WTF he thought he was doing. I got the response that I was falling off the bed and he had to save me. *Ugh*. I told him that my ass was quite firmly on the bed as I was lying on my back and he could let go. Next morning, he of course had no friggin clue where that bruise on my chest showed up from. When I asked him... "so...how'd you sleep last night?". He knew there was a problem. That seemed to be the last episode like that in the apartment.

Flash to the wedding rehearsal. I still couldnt shake the feeling that this was definitely not right. Why I didnt discuss this with mom I have no clue. I couldnt talk to my friends as at this point I didnt have many and those I had werent opening up on the feelings they had of my to be hubby. The bridesmaids were all his sisters so they wouldnt have been any help. I felt like that scene from the Emperor's New Groove where Kronk is dealing with what he calls his shoulder angels. One was saying, "Look the church doors...your folks are here...it'd be so easy to just leave right now and not look back."...the other one was telling me "but all these people came and some from out of state just for this occasion". I felt trapped. I knew what I was wanting (run, run, run!!), but then there was the other side of me who felt obligated to go through with the motions. Man, I wish I'd gone with my gut and allowed the instinct for survival to do what it wanted. He was upset after the rehearsal dinner because my mom had said he wasnt going to be allowed in the apartment the night before the wedding...and all 5'0.25" of her stood her ground about it. He ended up having to sleep at his folks that night. God it felt great to have that bed all to myself.

After the rehearsal, my family, maid of honor and me retired back to the apartment. Maybe I should say mom instead of my family as I think dad and my bro took off for part of the night and it was mostly us girls. I remember sitting on the floor as we were all talking and having my hair put up in ragcurls for the night. It took several yards of fabric and 3/4 can of mousse to get them set. I looked alot like a Raggedy Ann doll once they were all in *laffs*.

I remember getting ready the next morning. My mom undid the ragcurls while I was polishing my nails. Damn hair didnt get dried so she had to use the blowdrier with a diffuser attachment to get it finished up. A curling iron and half a can of hairspray later, my hair was done. Once my nails were dry and my warpaint was in place (just kidding THAT didnt take as long to do), I got into a shirt and pants for transport. You should have seen the excitement at my apartment building when the limo pulled up to take me to the church.

Once at the church, we went to the basement (it was their banquet/meeting area) to get ready. Up to this point I hadnt walked in the dress with the train on (mom made it detachable so it'd be easier at the reception) so I was walking circles in the center of the room. Mostly I was trying to work out a case of the jitters. I guess at this point I was still trying to convince myself it was all in my mind and nothing was truly the matter...things would get better. It was just wedding day nerves right? As my party and I ascended the stairs to the main level the jitters got worse and I really did NOT want to be doing this. "Oh look...there's the door...last chance to change ya mind..." I managed to get down the aisle without incident. That's not to say the wedding went without it's hitches. There was the incessant kicking noise because the ring bear wouldnt sit still and was hitting the mic over there on accident. Now before anyone gets on me about harping on this...the child in question was 8-9 years old and more like a junior attendant than anything. Yes it was boring but still. I could understand a child of 4 or 5 acting up but he was certainly old enough to sit still for an hour... at least he always managed it when he went to church on Sundays. Then there was the father boutonniere that ended up on my chest after we went through the hugging of the parents bit that a Catholic ceremony has you do. How do I know it was one of the fathers? Because it was white and they were the only ones with white roses. We had a photographer that held us hostage in the church longer than he should have for pictures. Why? Because it was overcast and the location I chose (a restaurant with a great view of the local lake) wasnt going to make a good backdrop with the choppy waves. Needless to say the happy exit the bride and groom make with everyone lining the walkway throwing birdseed...didnt happen. When we *finally* were allowed to leave, the limo driver was pissy because he had another wedding after ours and the long, romantic drive that usually gets to happen? Well it didnt happen either....not that I blame the driver any. On the drive we had champagne in the back. Let me rephrase this...I had a half glass, my maid of honor and the best man each had about a half glass (it was pretty noxious stuff anyhow...definitely NOT Asti). The groom, however, managed to polish off the entire rest of the bottle (LARGE bottle mind you) and was pretty much pickled by the time we got to the reception. Let me tell you he had a pissed off wife when we arrived. I put on my theatre face and just kept going. The rest of the day went without much of a hitch...well except when we went to leave. They (the groomsmen) had messed with the car as is custom. In the process of "decorating", they'd removed a sparkplug and replaced it with something else that exploded when the car was started. So our decorated glitter spewing out of the vents (4 damn vials worth!!!) car now didnt want to work and the only one who didnt think it was funny was the groom. Have you guessed yet that he said something about it when we were headed back to his folks to the other reception? You did? Well damn.

That night was escaped to a hotel before heading out for our 2 week honeymoon. Let me rephrase this....1 week torture going through all the damn battlefields from the Civil War (he INSISTED on going...I thought this was supposed to be fun for the BOTH of us?)....THEN a 1 week trip to the Poconos (and the only sun we saw was on the first week...I ended up having to wear longsleeves because I ended up with sun poisoning...it rained during what was supposed to be the romantic part of our trip).

Sunday, July 15, 2007

From Schepps Lane to Heritage Park

During my stay there, I usually slept on the sofa. It was actually quite comfortable in the autumn as the temperature wasnt really all that bad. Come the cold weather, however, sleeping on the sofa wasnt exactly the best place to be sacked out. his mom liked to do what most people up north do, turn down the thermostat a bit at night to save on energy. They had small bedrooms so the rooms for the most part stayed pretty cozy all night so long as the doors were closed and you threw on an extra blanket. Woe to those who were stuck in the livingroom to sleep though as it got very very chilly even WITH the extra blanket. Jim, noticing one night how chilly it was, suggested that I sleep in his room. Mind you, there was only a twin size bed in that room and no way in hell could both of us fit which means SOMEONE was going to have to sleep on the floor. Do you think he'd give up that bed even once in my stay there? Nope. Not even once. Not EVEN after the one night that he managed to hurt me.

Jim was (and is) a history buff. So much so that every waking moment is used for learning more history. History games, books, documentaries etc etc ruled his days. I should have known that there was no way in hell anyone would come between him and that mistress for sure. When I say every waking moment, I mean even up to lights out he'd be reading about something historical and he had this tendancy to lean towards wars. Did I mention that he also walked and talked in his sleep? One night he woke me out of a deep sleep because he was screaming "In COMING!!"...he'd been reading about one of those wars again and there were missles involved. *sigh* Ok I can handle an episode of this, really, so long as it's not every night and it didnt occur every single night. One night was particularly bad. Im not sure wtf he was reading but he woke up screaming. I was lying on my left side with my back to the bed as usual and as I started to turn onto my back and get up to try and calm him, the dream took a turn for the worst and he tried to get out of bed. Yep, I took both feet to the ribs as he swung his legs out of bed and attempted to stand up. God that hurt. Of course I screamed out and began crying which shifted his dream I guess because he sat there and tried to comfort me. Thankfully I could still breathe and it didnt feel like anything was broken. The next morning when we got up and were getting ready for work, he walked in on me changing in his room and saw the huge bruise on my ribs. He asked me where I got them from , figuring I got them while at work. I looked at him square in the face and said "You stepped on me asshole...those bruises are your damn fault". Last I knew, he never set his feet straight on the floor again while getting out of bed. He'll sit up with at least 6" between his feet and the floor and then slowly set them down.... even in his sleep. Yeah I should have left him then, but it was an accident and not purposefully in anger.

We looked for several weeks for just the right apartment in the right location. I should rephrase that to say, I looked for several weeks. Even though he was all set to get his own place, he just didnt have the drive to actively look on his own. This was a huge flag of things to come when it came to something as simple as job hunting. I found an apartment in that week's ads in a very nice section of town close to where I was working at the time and wanted to go see it. They had a good deal in the ad. Lease with them and get the third month rent free. He waited until the next week to bring me. Can anyone say too late? I know you can...go ahead. We all know the deals in this week's ads are good only for how long? Usually this week only. We want to remember this.

Heritage Park apartments were (are) located in Liverpool, NY. They were a few minutes away from the Stylish Women warehouse where I was working. Granted he'd have to drive a ways for his job, but it at least cut our travel in half as he wouldnt need to make 2 trips to Liverpool for me. Plus if he had to work late there were a couple gals that lived close enough where they could drop me off if need be. We talked with the leasing agent and had mentioned the ad. She had verbally said yes to it but never put it in the lease. When the error had been discovered (that the ad was from the previous week and she shouldnt have said yes to it), it had gotten to that third month so I didnt pay the rent. A week later they called looking for the rent and I told them that the agent had said the third month was free. I was told that the ad was for the week before (it had been a month ad and we'd seen it on the last week of the run for the special) and that we'd leased at the first of the month which didnt fall under the special. We went in and worked out an arrangemet with the leasing agent (the dimwit) and arranged to pay the rent every 2 weeks as it had thrown our finances out of whack. A couple months later we get a call from the owner and no we cant be paying it that way and no that other agent no longer works for them. *sigh* Needless to say we ended up having to move again.

Im not remembering any specific fight here to be honest. I do remember there were alot of them and most of them about money or how I embarrassed him for this or that or I kept him waiting too long when he came to pick me up from work....like I can really control that. I remember alot of times going to a closet to cry. I dont know why, I just felt safer there...not that the doors would have stopped him if he wanted to do anything. I do remember being miserable, especially when that crap came down with the leasing office. Damn jerks. Stupid me for not getting it all in writing though and boy you can bet I caught hell from him over this even though HE had alot to do with the problems too.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Memories of Schepps Ln

Schepps Lane was the next step in my housing. His folks had (and still do for all I know) a beautiful 2 bedroom home in Kirkville, NY. It used to be a 3 bedroom but when Jim's sisters all got moved out and into their own homes, the small bedroom in back got converted to a den. The area that used to hold the room's closet got converted to an office cubby. It was just big enough for the desk and a file cabinet.

They had a front door which wasnt used for much but deliveries or during trick or treating. The front door led straight to the livingroom. The entrance that everyone used was through the garage and to the side door which led right into the kitchen. Ruth had (has?) a very nice kitchen that always smells so damn good. Very often she'd be making bread, lasagna or something else and if not that then she was canning or making homemade pasta. Yummy. I loved her to death. She was always sweet and kind and very rarely got overly angry about anything. Oh dont get me wrong, she'd reprimand you but never yell...it was all in the tone. His father is where he gets his temper from Im sure. Jim Sr had quite the temper on him. Sr had worked on the railroad all his life and when things got lean and the money wasnt there to feed his kids, he went out and did what he had to to feed them...fish, rabbits, deer...whatever he could get is what they ate. As such, he held his kids to very high standards as he didnt want them to have to go through what he did Im sure.

I never felt overly comfortable in their house as Ruth kept it spotless. I swear she wiped things down, vaccuummed and cleaned everything on a daily basis. Everything was spic n span at all times. Martha Stewart would have been proud to call her a sister...guarantee you that. Jim's 2 main chores at home (like they were to become in our household) were to clean the litterbox and take out the trash. That's it. Nothing else with the exception of upkeep on the pool in the summertime. That's not much to ask is it? I dont think it is. Well, when he knew his folks were out of earshot he'd bitch and complain about having to do any of it. Now wait...you are in your 20's, living room and board free with your folks and you are going to complain about 2-3 chores? *shakes head* I shoulda sold my shit and moved then because if he was going to bitch about it under his folks' roof you KNOW he'd do it in our home.

I spent that Christmas season with him and his folks. On New Years, his parnets pretty much got tired early and went to bed while we stayed up to watch the specials on for the night. Jim decided this night he wanted me to play one of his damn war games with me. I hated those friggin games as they were boring and much to complicated for me to keep track of. Anyhow I figured at least he wasnt locking me out of his room and so I played. Then idiotboy did the worst thing possible for him. He told me he was going to play it historically. This in and of itself isnt bad because I hated history and couldnt have told you what happened during this particular part of the war (the game was called D-Day). What WAS stupid on his part was to tell me what all happened and then tell me where all the troops were going to come into play. On top of all that he decided he was going to be the Americans and they won that day. Stupid man. Give me an underdog position and tell me how you're going to play then expect me to lose? Oh game on. I proceeded to disassemble his troops one group at a time and where the "good guys" had historically made it onto the beach? Well his troops never got off the damn boats because as they did...all my dudes were there annihilating them ;) (if you are afraid to come off the boats, dont try to invade Normandy). LOL !! Well we only got half through the game when he threw a fit (poor loser again) and tossed the game all over the livingroom. Then he stomped off to his room. He never asked me to play that one again. A few weeks later (?timing?) his best bud came G*came over and Jim decided to play another war game. He figured , I guess, that since it was a 3 way game I'd have a harder time defeating him and maybe he'd have a better shot at it. Nope. G* wasnt much of a wargame player and not so good on the strategy. All he was doing was slowing me down a little so I took out G* first and then went after Jim. Pretty much started whomping on him then too. If I recall he stopped playing that type of game with me.... I cant help it, I was raised to do my best and win if I had the skills to do so. He simply couldnt handle this. Ohhh...I should have used this tactic with the relationship...maybe HE would have walked out before me. Maybe this is why I stayed around so long, I didnt want to be beaten at this game. Maybe this is why he was the way he was, he was trying to get me to quit before him....so he ultimately won overall. Well damn that sucks.

As Im thinking back, Im beginning to realize that his folks seemed to treat me better than him. I rarely got hollared at...just a disapproving look now and then. I always tried to live by their rules though. I was under their roof so it was only the right thing to do. One has to wonder if there was something going on well before I showed up....was there relief when they realized that someone was taking him off their hands *finally*. If there was, one has to wonder if they understand why I left the way I did. I guess I'll never know. I could have found out for sure in May as I was in the area, but I didnt have the guts to face them then. I dont think I ever will.

I remember a blow out he had with his folks around Christmastime. Two of his sisters were over with their families celebrating the day. Their children (4 for the one and at the time the other had 3 + 1 very little one - this same sister has 7 or 8 now) were in the finished basement playing (Jim and Ruth had a tv and bar down there as well as Jim's weightset...there was also a wood stove to warm the place up). When they all left, Jim had gone down for something and raised a ruckus because the kids had gotten into my boxes of stuff which we had temporarily stored down there and strewn alot of my belonging everywhere (including some clothes I would have rathered the kids not find... if ya know what I mean). His folks had a point that the stuff shouldnt have been down there any how, but on the other hand I had no where else to put it. I think it was shortly there after Jim decided we were going to move the minute we had the money (yet he'd never save, he'd still spend it like water).

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

More Memories from the Deerfield Park timeframe

Closets are a big problem for me still. The ones here arent so bad as they have actual hinged doors on them and not the sliding ones most places have. He had a hinged wooden door in his closet at his folks' house. This flashback is a particularly strong one for me. I dont know if it's because of what was done or because of what I said afterwards that makes it so strong. I remember one night, sometime after I moved into the apartment and before MM* and I had our talk...possibly before Thanksgiving, Im not sure on the timing here (Im beginning to wish I'd started my diary so much earlier...maybe I would have seen all this alot sooner). His folks, although they had a beautiful console tv in the livingroom and some really comfy furniture, would spend their nights in the small den. I could understand in the winter as it was cozier back there. This gave Jim and I the livingroom to ourselves. Anyhow, this was another one of those nights that he physically locked me out of his life and tonight it was earlier than usual. After a couple hours (he went in right after supper), I was tired of sitting alone so I knocked on his door. I damn well he could hear me as that room wasnt all that big (barely enough for a twin bed, rocker, desk, small dresser and nightstand) nor was he making a hell of alot of noise where I couldnt be heard. Well I got ignored and so I knocked again. Yet again I was ignored, when I knocked a third time....his folks basically had enough, came out of the den and told him to open his door, that it was rude to have company and not be out visiting with them. Well of course this didnt sit well with him. It wouldnt sit well with anyone to be honest but this was happening all the time and I think they noticed this. All I had wanted was my purse because I was getting ready to walk home and all he had to do was open the friggin door and find out what I wanted. If I had my keys on me or the purse handy I would have just plain ole left and he wouldnt have known til he came out or until his folks noticed and asked him about it later (which would have been just as bad because I would have heard it the next day). So I go in to get my purse and he closes the door and starts in on me right then and there about how damn embarrassed he is and all sorts of shit. Then he took a step towards me and of course I took a step back as a reflex. In the process of stepping back away from him (remember this room isnt all that big PLUS it's cluttered with books and stuff), I lost my balance and fell into the closet right on top of several models that he'd *just* finished a week or so ago. How do I know they were only there a week? Because I'd had to paint the buggers. This, of course, brought his folks running as it had made such a clatter. What do they find but me on my ass in the closet and him standing over me fist in the air. Well both of them railed into him like there was no tomorrow and he stormed off, leaving the house for a walk. I was bawling at the time and grabbed my purse and started to head out. His father asked where I thought I was going and I told him I was going home. He said that no I wasnt walking home that Jim WOULD bring me home when he got back and if he wasnt back in an hour that I was to come and let him know and HE'D take me home. In an hour Jim returned and did indeed take me back to the apartment...ordered me into the car like I was his friggin dog though. We didnt speak for about 2 days and then it was like nothing had never happened. I did tell him about now that if that EVER happened again and he raised his hand against me in anger I was gonna be so gone.

I remember Thanksgiving that year. MM* and I had a small dinner party. There were 2-3 mutual friends from highschool plus 1-2 each that the other wouldnt know. She'd known of Jim but hadnt really had a chance to meet him up to this point. Now that I think of it, it was right about then he was wanting to stay over all the damn time. *sigh* Man I hate 20/20 hindsight. I cant blame him for having a thing for her (assuming he did and I bet he did). She was (and still is) rather on the petite side, very pretty and half Italian like he was. Now that I really think of it, she was built much like his mom would have been at that age before illnesses took her over and made her gain weight. *double sigh*. Anyhow, he seemed to have brought his best manners that night. I dont know where he lost them afterwards, but they were present that night. I spent most of the night waiting for the other shoe to drop as I just *knew* something would happen. It didnt...surprisingly enough.

I dont remember decorating the apartment for Christmas so Im guessing it had to be right after Thanksgiving that he insisted on staying all the time and about 2 weeks after that MM* and I had our talk where she said she wanted ME for the roomie...she didnt bargain on getting him too. I really wish she'd have worded it differently, maybe then I would have gotten the shot in the ass I needed to leave him. However, she didnt and of course I had to tell him he could no longer stay over. This of course pissed him off to no end. Instead of having another arguement with him I figured it was just best to move out of the apartment (I'd only been there maybe 2-3 months tops as I remember autumn weather when I moved in) and in with him and his folks.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Memories of Deerfield Park

Deerfield Park was a very nice apartment complex up near Carrier Circle in Syracuse. The apartment I ended up in up that way was easily 2-3 TIMES the size of where I had been living. It was in a very nice area too....therefore it had a rather substantial rent (for the area and the time) but with only paying half of everything I was saving nearly $150 or more a month ($250+ only 1/2 the utilities for 2-3 times the size the space as opposed to $375 + all utilities for what amounted as to Paris Hilton's shoe closet). The apartment was bright and beautiful and I had very high hopes that things were going to look up. The only problem I had with the apartment was the fact I had to take a very early bus to catch a transfer to get to work. This meant being up at 4am most days. I was hoping this was going to be worth it though.

When I brought Jim to see it the first time, he fell in love with it. He also liked the fact I had a roomie and wouldnt be in a location all by myself all the time. It was rather upsetting to see that MM* had grabbed the larger of the two bedrooms without asking first but when she explained later why she did, I was rather appreciative of her forethought (the bigger room looked out onto the road and she wasnt sure how busy it'd get and knowing I had to be up ultra-early while she was a theatre manager and was up half the night anyhow). I think he threw the bigger fit as to who got what room than I did. I didnt care as on my days off I like to sleep and I realized very quick I had a north facing bedroom which meant less sunlight in the AM hours...meaning I could sleep as long as I wanted if I was tired or not feeling well.

Things were well for a few weeks and then the bickering at work began again. Never ever was there a sign of trouble in the apartment or loud enough for his folks to hear when we were visiting. But the trouble was there nonetheless. I remember one particular arguement we had, I cant remember wtf it was about all I know is that he was supposed to pick me up after work (his shift ended about 2 hours before mine that day) and he wasnt there. Oh I knew he had to go to the library for research (he was working on his masters degree at that point) and I knew that's probably where he went. However, he was late and I was tired and I also knew we had a huge blow out at work so I figured he wasnt going to show up. I had been waiting for 30 minutes when a friend of mine saw me waiting and offered me a ride home. I took her up on it. We got talking and she expressed some concern with what was going on but didnt press the issue. She got me home and I locked myself in the apartment. I hadnt been home 15 minutes when I saw Jim's truck pull up. Thankfully the blinds were pulled just so where I could look out and people couldnt really see in . He came right up to the door and pounded away...ringing every few seconds. I crept up to the door and peeked out the peep hole and just watched (God I wish I had kept those balls and left sooner. *sigh*). He left the door and I heard the truck roar off. I went to my room for a good cry and spent most of the evening in there. Infact I spent most of my weekend in the room. The phone would ring and I'd monitor the machine. He called several times. The first call came about an hour or so after he left. He was fit to be tied. He knew I had to be at the apartment because he'd asked at work and they told him who gave me a ride. Oh he left all sorts of obscenities on that message. On the Saturday of that weekend, I got several more calls wondering where I was and if I was ok. Sunday was more of the same. I didnt see much of MM* that weekend either as she worked nights and didnt get home until really early AM so I was asleep. I didnt see much of her even in the early afternoons because she was spending much time with her mom (who was going through a divorce). At the time, he hadnt been creeping her out yet so she didnt say much. Only enough to register that he wasnt around and mention I didnt look well. Monday morning I was up early to catch the bus and get to work. He was late getting in because out of habit he'd swung by the apartment complex to give me a ride and I hadnt been in my usual spot so he drove completely through the complex to check if I was walking. He was a ball of emotions when he got in that day because he was pissed but yet happy to see I was ok and very contrite about our altercation that one Friday. I guess he was worried all weekend. Good for him. It's sad that I'd have to take such drastic steps to get him to notice when he was doing wrong. I dunno where or when I lost my balls in this relationship but damn Im glad I found them when I did.

Now that I think back I think that particular fight was because of our jobs. The hardlines side of KMart had moved him to the stockroom and I had been expressing a major displeasure with being out on the sales floor because of something or other. I think part of the problem was a conflict of personalities in the softlines area and I just did NOT get along with this one person. They were making life pretty much hell for me. When I went to talk to a hardlines manager about a transfer my boss got mad at me because I should have come to her first and I didnt. She said maybe I just needed a change of scenery and placed me in receiving to work with our stocker. Unfortunately for Jim and me, I thrived back there and did the job well and he, on the other hand couldnt handle it (softlines receiving was mostly processing, labelling and hanging the garments while hardlines deals with everything else). As a result of him not being able to handle it , he got moved back out to the Sporting Goods Department while I stayed in the back. The backroom people had great hours. At least the receivers did....they had 7-4 or 8-5 shifts, mornings and only M-F. You can see where the rub would be if he's put back from that to a flexible schedule and having to deal with the public while I still had the prime hours out back away from most things.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Memories of Lillian Avenue

Lillian Avenue was my first apartment. It wasnt so far from my folks that I could pop home anytime I wanted, but far enough to give me a sense of being completely on my own. It was a very small apartment. I'd guess it couldnt have been too much bigger than a studio and a half. There were 4 rooms, but a couple werent nearly as large as I'd like. On the plus side, it was only a block off the main bus route so there were always busses going where I wanted to be. On the otherhand, it wasnt exactly in the best side of town. It wasnt exactly city but the neighborhood was rougher than what I was used to.

He'd never stay over night, using his parents as an excuse...they wouldnt approve (strange because it was farther out than the next apartment and he wanted to stay THERE all the damn time). In fact he didnt like to spend a whole lot of time in that apartment with me period. We ended up going out most nights or to his folks and then he'd drop me off late at night. He always got pissed because invariably I'd fall asleep while he was driving. I couldnt help it though. He'd wait until after 11pm to take me home and I was tired then...plus it didnt help with the friggin headlights coming at us. Something about headlights at night makes me so drowsy (its almost hypnotic the way they come at you ...plus it makes my eyes hurt). Even to this day I have trouble staying awake in a car especially at night. Of course, then he'd leave me at my doorstep and not wait for me to get upstairs on nights like this. He'd leave all pissed off that I fell asleep on the way home. There was one particular night the fight was so bad that he patched outta there and my neighbor threatened to call the cops.

I remember once having a week's vacation in that apartment. Day one was fine, by day two I was claustrophobic. I ended up doing 5 oil paint by numbers just to stay occupied. Not once that week did he manage to come over or call to see how I was doing. Maybe it's because I'd paid the rent and he KNEW I didnt have any money on hand. Wouldnt surprise me none. He was the "I'll go if you're paying" or "How about we spend your money" type. Knowing I couldnt put out for a dinner or lunch more than likely kept him away. Learning how to budget your money is hard with that type of person around.

I dont have too many memories of this apartment as I didnt stay there long. I found out really early that I couldnt make ends meet alone and especially with a spender hanging on me. I only wish I had figured it out before my parents and brother moved from W Second St out to California. By the time I had decided I couldnt do it, they were more than likely in Kansas. A pair of ruby slippers would have come in handy right about then...

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Not so fond memories of W Second St

W Second is where I was living with my folks before I met Jim. I guess I was a typically happy kid, considering most in school would rather not have much to do with me. I dont know if it was due to the way I dressed (the folks didnt really have a whole lot of money but we were clothed and had new clothes twice a year) or if they were threatened because my grades were always good. All I know is that I ended up hangin with the guys more because the gals didnt like me and as I got older it became practically no one but a select few. I dont think I gave off an arrogant vibe or anything, I thought I was pretty open to most. Maybe I was considered a friend but they just didnt say anything. I doubt there's many that would really remember me at all (unless they looked in their yearbooks and even then I was hardly memorable). I had my troubles...like any typical kid....especially sibling rivalry. He came second but always managed to best me on everything. Now if you go to the same school and ask if they remember us, the teachers will all remember him more than me. Kinda hard to forget my bro when he was on the front of the newsletter everytime it went home. *sigh*

Anyhow, I remember nights coming home really late with Jim and having to break into my own house. My room at the time had a window that led right out onto the porch. I learned in order to not disturb my folks to leave a ruler slightly wedged into the window so I could climb in and not use my keys to enter. Many times he wouldnt get me home until 2-3 am. Boy my parents hated that. Too old for a curfew but yet I was still under their roof but you really cant ground me as I was legal age to do as I like.

I remember him coming to meet my folks for the first time. Boy he won daddy over quick by showing interest in the old rifles dad was pulling out of the closet. He was always pleasant around my mom and never giving any hint of what was beneath. I remember one winter evening he showed up to take me on a date and I heard the truck pull in. I started to get up and mom told me to sit down and make him come to the door and if he so much as honked that horn she'd throw him out. When it got to be 10, 15 minutes I got up to look to see what was keeping him and there he was scraping the ice off the windshield. The idiot hadnt properly scraped the window clear before leaving his home. Sheesh. I give him credit for coming to the house when he was done and not honking the horn.

I remember one time he came over to bond with my brother. What a nightmare that was. They spent the evening playing Axis and Allies and my brother systematically started defeating Jim and wiping the board with him. Unfortunately, Jim's as poor a loser as my brother is a poor winner so the night was very long and stressful. Jim told me later he'd never play a game again with my brother because of his "attitude". Excuse me, Jim's attitude was just as bad and he is nearly a decade older than my brother. Of course bro is going to have that cocky attitude. Besides we're competitive, we were raised to be as such. Mom never *LET* us win anything. If we beat her it was fair and square. In fact, in the 30 years Ive played her Scrabble I've only beat her once and that's because we hadnt played in 15 years and she'd underestimated me. I saw poor sportsmanship on both sides that night. The worst coming from Jim as the only reason my brother gloated is because Jim bragged he was gonna whoop my bro's ass in the game....so basically Jim had it coming.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

More flags and they're all red. TMI alert

WARNING: Heads up this entry definitely has extreme TMI in it. Like I said before, this unfortunately is part of the history of this particular segment of my life. If you dont want to read stuff like this I encourage you to close this entry and head either to the Home page, my Main blog or my MySpace.

Last chance to turn back....

When we left the last entry I had said the engagement was constantly on and off repeatedly and there were times I wanted to take that ring (that belonged to my gramma initially) and throw it at him. Actually I really felt like stuffing it up his nose or in some other uncomfortable orafice...but I digress.


If that wasnt a major flag, I dunno what is. The fights werent bad at the house. We managed (somehow) to keep it from the folks. Many nights (every actually) I would sit alone in the livingroom while he went to his room and locked me out (FLAG!) for almost an hour. Why did I permit this? I dunno. Was feeling old and lonely I guess. When we moved to our own place, nothing changed. He still locked himself away everynight- sometimes twice or three times on weekend nights. Sex was almost non-existant here as well as anyplace down the road. Having to chase him down everytime. Him not wanting anything until too late at night for me to be awake to want it. Worse yet was him simply being disgusted with the very act of it. Not wanting to reciprocate certain acts because he thought they were gross. Him taking and taking and not giving the gratification back. Most embarrassing is when he goes lax (soft) when the time for penetration arrives. I dont mean occasionally- I mean everytime. It got so bad that I swear he didnt want it at all unless he was drunk. Seems like the last dozen times or more the only time we did was when we were (or better say HE was) drunk or he was depressed. I so stopped desiring sex from him about the time we moved to Louisiana. Foreplay became nonexistant too. Even just the kissing, petting, snuggling reduced into shorter and shorter periods. Even stopped spooning- that was my fault though as I would push away if it was too hot or if I was on my cycle. But it was never meant to be permanent...NEVER. Up until a month ago, he never did spoon. Always back to back. Two weeks ago he started to spoon again. In December, he *finally* found me desirable again. Really cheesed me off what he said... "Gee, keep losing weight like that and we'll have kids in no time!" Yes...indeed. Ok why not just tell me Ive been too fat now? And he's an Adonnis?? NOT!!! Ok now I feel fat, undesirable and old too. Needless to say, I was pissed.

Gonna stop here for a moment. Looks like I headed into a tangent again. I tend to do that while telling stories especially if a section like that triggers a later memory. Then the later memory just takes over and needs to work itself out. By the looks of the writing itself , I was pissed to the point of being nearly illegible. A prime example of why I dont normally write when Im really, really, really mad.

Sex is a give and take dance. It's no fun when only one gives and the other not only doesnt but wont. Im not sure what was going on mentally with this critter, but he surely didnt seem to enjoy the act no way no how.

I dont know what it is about men and being so damn hot blooded. Both men I've been to bed with both generate a shitload of body heat. In NY with Jim, spooning wasnt an issue because in the winter you NEEDED the warmth. The only time I didnt want it is when I was cramped up and personally I dont like anyone that close behind me when Im feeling like that...plus his arm was heavy so it added to the pain. In Louisiana, it was a different matter because it was hot even WITH the central air going 24/7...plus there was no ceiling fans to circulate the air in the bedrooms upstairs. That type of heat (even in winter) is not condusive to comfortable spooning. So basically after awhile, he stopped trying.

In late 2002, I started losing some weight. It wasnt anything I was doing purposefully, it was just coming off due to where I was now working (a AA volume store as opposed to the D volume store in Louisiana...meant I had to move my ass fast to get shit done). Well between that and having to walk to a busstop 3 times a week and the fact there was no money for food because it was all budgeted for bills and bus fare every week. We had no refrig in the apartment we were renting and no money to get one. Basically I could only buy spoilables for the one meal a week and the rest was canned or boxed food. We had to eat it all because there was no place to keep left overs. Top things all off with a steady diet of peanut butter sandwiches or peanut butter toast depending on if it was breakfast or lunch. It really sucked. The sugar got used running around and needless to say my body HAD to work off the extra stores of fat. I wasnt exercising any more than usual above and beyond work...the weight was just coming off. So NOW he finds me desirable. Ex-CUSE me? Even at my thinnest (129 lbs...I was fkn skin and bones... had to work hard and starve to get down that far) he didnt find me desirable why the hell now!??!! And to make a statement like that?? I dont think so, not with that disfunctional tool buddy. If the sailors are too afraid to come off the boat, they wont be invading Normandy...sorry. And then to make me feel fat all this time (although I was but weight's always been a problem with me you knew before you married me) while you aint all that either. At least I can carry my weight better. That comment he made was just as I was getting ready so we could go upstairs to M* and R*'s apartment because they were cooking a Christmas supper for us. He hadnt noticed the weight loss til then because I usually wear all my clothes really large because I get warm fast so I like to make sure there's some airflow around me. Actually he should have noticed because I run around in my night clothes on the off days just because it's more comfortable. Shows you how observant the ass was....to say something that callous and right before I had to have my happy face on. *grumblez*

We went to M*'s for supper and he tried everything to be the doting loving husband. Had to have a drink before touching me....and still didnt go where he should (not that I would have allowed it but to try woulda said something).

That night was pure torture. I think M* figured out it was but not until a few weeks after. Im not sure. Damn ass got himself good and tipsy. Not that it took much as we were only social drinkers. I personally dont drink alot because I make a very mean , hurtful drinker. I know my limits and stick by them religiously (well as religiously as humanly possible). I dont recall having much to drink that night otherwise we would have for certain ended up in a fight afterwards.

Well anyway, in that first apartment the fighting happened, just not as often as we weren't working in the same place anymore. But results always the same all the time- I run off crying and then beg forgiveness for hours afterwards, usually to no avail, and then he'd act like nothing happened. When we moved to the trailor in Kirkville it was just as bad. We'd fight, I'd cry, beg and suddenly nothing was ever wrong. Wouldnt take my apology, and wouldnt apologize in return.

Gonna stop here as the whole diary got really disjointed there. The next entry isnt much so I think I'll skip it all together. It's the last entry I wrote in the diary and it doesnt make much sense anyhow. I dont know if it was because I wanted to just forget the past or if I was deliriously happy at the time. I cant even remember where I was. It's dated 06/01/2003. I think I may have been at my SCSis's place at that point.

I remember those fights like they were yesterday though. He'd get to screaming at me about something or other. Sometimes it was something I did, sometimes it was something I couldnt control. I'd apologize, even if it wasnt my fault (sometimes, many times in fact, it was HIS own friggin fault). I'd apologize several times and go off and have my cry. I seem to remember going into a closet several times because everytime I'd cry he'd hollar at me more so I figured if I was hidden away he'd not hear me as much...then he wouldnt yell anymore. Thing is, I have an irritable temper. My natural proclivity is to scream, swear and throw or hit something. This is something I've worked very hard to over come. As such, now Im not sure what to do with myself short of crying to work that pent up frustration out of my system. Damn I really need a therapist, Im sure, but I think Im doing ok working some of this out of my system.

Cant decide what my next entry is going to be like. Havent really had to plan them out because it was all there in my own handwriting. I may go back over some of this. If I repeat something I already said, please forgive me. Just keep reading because it may go into more depth than I had originally.

Monday, July 2, 2007

The beginning of the stupidity


Lord knows what day it is. I know the day is Monday as yesterday was Easter Sunday- the date, however is another matter. 21st. I looked it up. Was bothering me enough to look. Mom called yesterday and said Jim said he definitely sent the check. Well, we'll see. He sounded very contrite from what she said. Supposedly sending me a letter too. Will get it all when I get to Mom and Dads. With any luck wont be staying there long. Just a week. Mom says I need to be out in 3 weeks time. Dunno why and dont know if I want to ask.

Time got away from me so fast once I stopped needing to know exactly what day it was and keep track for every bloody person under my roof. Found out later that Mom had only set that limit because that's the limits her landlord at the mobile home park had allowed. No problem. I love my folks but I definitely didnt want to be under their roof any longer than I had to. Why? Because I was raised that if you live under someone's roof, you live by their rules. Period.

Called and talked to Ross today. He says the apartment was definitely empty. Good, one less thing to worry about. Gonna talk to Kevin tonight and see what I can do to get me off the lease and out from under the eviction notice. If it means saving Jim's ass, so be it. Gotta decide how best to divide things up (possessions and bills), not to mention how to tell him because I dont think he caught the hint. Of course there hasnt been a call in 3 days, maybe he has. Have to get settled and hit a dr or Planned Parenthood and have the paperwork done to find out my status. If I find out after 10 yrs of marriage I am a virgin I'll prolly cry. Of course, in the long run, it will be beneficial for me to be one- but still.

Yes, after 10 yrs there was a huge possibility that the marriage had never been consummated. To put it bluntly, I think I married the poster child for Viagra.....he certainly needed it. No, there isnt any shame in needing the stuff. In fact, I think higher of a guy who knows he needs it and gets himself put on it. However, to know you HAVE these problems and not ACKNOWLEDGE you have a problem and out and out REFUSE to have it looked into...that's another story.

My check should arrive at Mom and Dad's tomorrow or the next day. If it doesnt, I'll need to get the benefits number and deal with it. Am finding it hard remembering what all needs to be done. . All I want is to get a job and settled and have all this crap over- marriage and all. Been nothing but problems from day one.... right from the engagement. Now that I look back, I wonder why I didnt see the flags?? I mean for crying out loud- he had the hots for this tiny little nothing of a gal. She was cute, I guess, blonde with blue eyes. He was chasing her pretty good and she hated it. Dont know how many times I had to chase him from our side of the store because he was interrupting our work. Poor gal was always driven to distraction because of it. She ended up leaving to finish school and never returned to KMart again.

At the time, KMart was divided into softlines (clothes) and hardlines (every other department in the store). It was also using hand tagging for the sales. Damn it was a pain in the ass. Especially having to price the bras and panties. Thank goodness when they went on sale it was for 2 weeks. Everything else in our side would go on sale for a week. We'd set the ad Friday and Saturday (unless it was big , then we'd start organizing on Thursday). This was a pain because Friday and Saturdays were Blue Light sale days so that time cut into getting the merchandise ready for Sunday's circular. I got in the habit of setting but not pricing everything on Wednesday so all I had to do was whip through with the pricing stickers and then sign it. Why so early? Because they discovered what most people have noticed during my streams...I have a great mic voice. As a result, I had to make most of the announcements for the softlines side Blue Lights. *ugh* That's another story though. On Sundays, we had to pull the previous week's ad stickers and remove the signing. Hardlines, however, was already scannable and only had to remove their signage so they finished pulling their ads so much sooner. This left the clerks to do other work for an hour before store opening and since there wasnt a load of work back in Sporting Goods Jim was pretty much free to wander. Oh, Im sure if I went over in his department I could have found plenty to do. Anyhow, this gave him time to come over and harrass this poor gal. Damn, if I'd been smart I would have sicced the store manager on him. There were a couple assistants and the main managers that would have backed me if I'd pushed the issue. But did I? No. Stupid me.

Unfortunately, I befriended him about the same time (shortly before she left) and I feel partially responsible for her leaving (flags 1 and 2). He progressively started using me to get to her (why was I so damn blind?). I guess in a way I liked him and had hoped to garner his attention. But now I realize he was just using me. I feel so dirty. He continued to use me for weeks after she left, getting me to call her at school. He would make sure I had a list of questions to ask. It got so she wouldnt talk to me anymore and told me as much. Anytime I couldnt answer one of his questions he'd get mad at me, or anytime I told him something she said that he didnt like and when she told me not to call - well he didnt like that either. For weeks afterwards, he was inconsolable (or seemingly so)- totally desolate (nothing changed later either). He finally turned to me as a companion (oh great, looking at it now- I was the rebound skank). I was immensely flattered and fell hook, line and sinker for it all. But I see it all clear now. He turned to me simply because I was the only gal that had made herself available to him (big flag!! Why did all the others stay away??). I was so lonely. Not many gentlemen callers and I kept getting older and older. . Maybe that's why I fell so hard.

Looking back, I should have just told him off and salvaged the other friendship. God, I was so damn naive to his real intentions. Up to this point I'd had 3 boyfriends total in my life. I dont think I was really ready for any of them as I was still a bit too young emotionally wise to handle a relationship such as a boyfriend/ girlfriend one. I'd spent most of my school years not forming relationships with many but instead preferring to keep my nose in the books. I had to work hard for the grades I got. My first boyfriend (9th grade) had to leave state (he was from a split family) and then I found out I wasnt his only girl. As for the second (10th grade) and third (just after highschool) ones, I didnt let them get close enough because I didnt want to go through what I had previously. Up until Jim these 3 were the ONLY ones to treat me as more than a friend. Seems most guys liked to hang with me, but didnt like me in "that" way. So I got older and older (in my mind's eye) and instead of being happy with what I had, sat and compared where I was to where mom was at my age. Simply put, I wasnt measuring up in the slightest. In the beginning at KMart, I would have several guys around chattin up a storm...but none seemed to show an interest in me other than to talk shop. When I knew I was going to end up sitting alone, I'd bring my layouts to lunch and work .. effectively putting up a brick wall so I'd be too busy to notice that the other gals were having a great time while I sat alone (most gals didnt like me either...I was too workaholic for their tastes and they'd rather hang with the cute dudes on their off hours). Needless to say, any attention at this point was more welcome than being alone.

When Mom and Dad decided to move and go to California, I opted to stay in NY (man, stupid move...if he loved me he woulda come and gotten me). Discovered after 3 months or so I couldnt really make it alone on what I made, but of course with him draining my funds constantly for stuff, it made it hard. I ended up moving in with MM* and my relationship with her went to hell because he was over CONSTANTLY (even overnight). Almost didnt make rent one month because his car broke down and I helped pay for the repairs. It got so bad there I moved in with Jim and his folks for awhile. After a few months there we moved to our own place. The entire engagement was rough. On again, off again and the fights were horrid. Bad enough I took off the engagement ring several times over. Came really close to throwing the ring at him.

Wow...now this is a jumbled mess. Let me see if I can straighten it out some. Mom and Dad decided to move to California so they'd be near her folks. Dad's mom had moved to Florida and the only thing keeping them there was a 6' plot at Assumption Cemetary. Mom's parents were getting older and it was in her best interest to move and be near them. Shortly after they moved, Jim proposed to me. There was no real engagement ring that HE bought, it was my ring that gramma in Florida gave me on my highschool graduation day. All he did was pay for the resizing as I'd lost a shitload of weight at the time. So that throwing the ring at him never would have happened. I may have given him the money for the resizing though because that would have been the right thing to do.

I found it hard to pay my rent in my first place because of the drain he was putting on my finanaces. It was always "Let''s go spend your money". Oh I know I should have said no. Even if I did, it was real tight all by myself so the move in with a roomie was quite beneficial. MM* was a galfriend from highschool. We got along great so it was a wonderful match. If I had just dumped that albatross from around my neck things would have been better. If she'd just told me he freaked her out instead of going the route of "I wanted you as a roommate...I didnt expect I'd be getting him too"....it may have given me the kick in the pants I needed because I always respected her opinion.

That one month, I almost didnt make my share of the rent because of his truck. It broke down and needed fixing. Since he was being nice enough to pick me up every morning, it was the right thing to put money towards the truck repair. Who knew my share was going to end up being 3/4 of the damn fix. *sheesh* About this time, things hit a rough patch between MM* and me and I moved out. I was still responsible for my half of the rent but at least I didnt have to face that strain anymore (man that was stupid too). Not too long afterwards, KMart redid the way they do things and my schedule got changed to hours I couldnt work (7am-4pm). Why? Because there was no damn bus to get me there and if I moved back to the apartment, the bus from there STILL wouldnt get me to work until 8am or a bit later. About now I was working in receiving. Hardlines receiving had a guy who was in the opposite problem (he needed the 7am-4pm shift) but since we were in different areas of the store they wouldnt switch the hours. I know...bloody stupid. The store level was fine switching things up a little...the head of hardlines receiver was training me how to shut receiving down for the day and the softlines boss was giving the hardlines stock person some small duties on our end. It was working out fine. Jim inadvertantly quit and was giving me grief about staying but was still getting me to work on time. Around my birthday that year, corporate from KMart stepped in and said no, this was the way the schedule was to run...PERIOD. So I told my boss...ok then, this gives me no choice. I put in my 2 weeks and she arranged to keep my schedule 8am-5pm until I left. I remember coming in the next day and having the head of hardlines receiving all up in my face for being an hour late at which point I gave it right back at him. My informing him that I had put my 2 weeks notice in was a slap across the face for him because management never bothered to tell him. He looked like he was going to cry (6'3" man in leather looking like a recently released convict...looking like he was about to cry...). I told him if he had any better ideas he'd best speak up. All I heard from him for 2 weeks was "I wish you werent going"....but not once was it said that he went to management to see how they could get me to stay.

The fights between Jim and I (before he quit) became the soap opera that seemingly everyone there knew about. I feel sorriest for SB* (my partner in softlines receiving) as he had to see some of them or see how I was holding up under the barrage of nasty words. Many times he did all the running and deliveries to our departments because I was in such bad shape.