Thursday, December 30, 2021

The little guy loves the movie Wall-E and I found this robot Wall-E for him for Christmas.  Technically, it was a gift for poppa, from Jack.  Poppa was kind enough and patient enough to put it together for him.

It remains bloody cold here, -33C tonight, but I'm stubborn and don't want to stay home just because it's cold.  Yesterday we went to the mall for a walk indoors, to burn off some energy, and I saw what I call sundogs;  technically it's a 22° halo, which I didn't even know was a thing.  You see them in the winter when it's really cold and the sun is low on the horizon.

Today I took Jack to an indoor playground which he likes.  We were there about ten minutes when he tripped and fell, and banged his face hard on a picnic table.  He's got quite a large, swollen area right beside his right eye and a small, abraded area.  I asked the staff to fill out an incident report and let the social worker know what had happened.  I was feeling like a crappy grandmother until one of the parents there told me about his parents opening the front door and banging into his daughter, leaving the mark of the deadbolt on her forehead.  It wouldn't have bothered me so much except children's services is still involved in his care and this is how everything started with his mom and a black eye.

Tomorrow we're going swimming, I think.  I have to convince myself to put my bathing suit on and go out in public.  Jack doesn't care what I look like, just me.  He was funny the other day when he noticed one of my tattoos on my backside.  He pointed and said, "What dat?"  If I chicken out of the swimming, we'll go wander around West Edmonton Mall and burn off the energy.

Christmas holidays have been kind of a blur this year, with everything blowing up it seems.  I still haven't cooked my Christmas turkey yet, maybe this weekend.  I'm working hard on just taking one day at a time but I miss making plans.  It's not just Jack and what's going to happen with him, but covid, climate change, and the world in general.  

Right now I'm thankful that I have a magic bag to take to bed with me and a good book to read.

Monday, December 27, 2021

I'm thankful Christmas is over for another year.  It was pretty much a bust.  Just before I left work on Thursday I was notified that Katie was sick.  She had a high fever and was lethargic.  Her roommate had also tested positive for covid.  I didn't go see Katie because there was nothing I could do and I didn't want to be exposed to covid.  The next morning Katie vomited once and her fever went down and she recovered quickly.

Friday night after work I I felt sick to my stomach and vomited up everything I'd eaten that day.  I was so tired and felt so rotten it was all I could to crawl into bed at 6pm and leave the two guys on their own.  My body felt like it had been beaten and my skin hurt but no fever.  The next morning I was still sick but improving.  Whatever I had, it knocked me flat on my ass for about 30 hours.  There was no Christmas dinner.  We had kraft dinner for supper.  

The little guy did get his presents open though but he wasn't feeling well either.  Nor was my husband.  We all fell asleep at some point on Christmas day.

I had my covid test this morning and I'm finally feeling better, just tired and feeling out of breath when I'm doing stuff.  The little guy had a nice video visit with his mama yesterday.  He finally misses her and she looks like she's doing well.  She's making sense when she talks.  She's smiling.  It's a night and day difference and I'm so thankful for that.  I am so hopeful that she keeps on doing the work when she gets out of rehab, for her sake and for Jack's sake.  

We broke a record here today with the cold.  Edmonton hit -41C.  Our place wasn't as cold obviously but it's fucking cold here.  When it gets this cold the roads turn into skating rinks and driving becomes very interesting.  

Hope everyone had a lovely Christmas.

Update.  I'm covid negative.   Wonder what I had.

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

 My sister sent me this video and I laughed out loud.  Merry Christmas.

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Yesterday we put a PICC in a patient for his stem cell transplant.  He's a lovely man from Newfoundland and a talker.  I was with him when they put in the CVC for his stem cell harvest, so we knew each other.  People from Newfoundland are generally kind, gregarious and as I said, they like to talk.  When we were all done and I was cleaning up, I lifted his arm to clean underneath and discovered this blood stain on the drape.  I got my co-worker to take a photo of it and called the patient's wife in to see it as well.  Photos were taken and we were all amazed by the blood stain.  It pretty much made my day.

I asked more questions of my son's wife yesterday and she started to share things with me.  My son is convinced there is something wrong with his baby.  When the baby was two weeks old, my son called 911 because he thought the baby wasn't breathing.  He's been trying to force feed the poor baby with pablum and he won't let the baby sleep for more than an hour.  He's convinced there is something wrong with the baby's skull and is accusing his wife of abusing the baby.  It was my son who called the police on the weekend to report that the baby was being assaulted.  The police came, checked the baby over, took photos, found no signs of assault and arrested my son.  He was let out of jail later, with a no contact order, and returned home.  When his wife wouldn't let him in, he broke down the door.  She called the police again and he left.  Last night he called me after I was asleep and left a message to let me know he's in jail again.

It appears he is suffering some sort of mental breakdown which breaks my heart, again.  If he calls me again I will urge him to seek help, this goes beyond drug and alcohol addiction.  He's not in touch with reality right now.

The weekend sucked.  The big guy is sick, he has turned into a snot factory, poor man.  Jack was sick as well.  Not sick enough to lay down, just sick enough to be grumpy poor guy.  

I keep telling myself it's not forever.  It's not forever but each day feels like forever.  

Monday, December 20, 2021

 My son was arrested this weekend for assaulting his five month old baby boy.  I am heartsick.

I've turned off comments. 

Update.  My son did not assault his son.  My son believes his son is being assaulted.   He also believes there is something wrong with the baby's skull.  He keeps wanting to take the baby to the hospital.   There is nothing wrong with the baby.  My son has lost touch with reality.

Saturday, December 18, 2021

This was the sun through the kitchen and family room windows yesterday morning at 9:30.  The poor sun is having a hard time making it above the horizon.  Three more days until the solstice and the days start getting longer.  We've had a lot of snow this week too and of course it's bloody cold.  It got down to -29C two nights ago.  I hate the cold and the dogs aren't keen on it either.  Even Heidi, our bigger dog was having a hard time with cold feet.

I had a long conversation today with Jack's social worker.  She was surprised that Gracie didn't show up for the court hearing and was also surprised to hear that Gracie's family is leaving the country for a month.  I told her the whole thing felt like a big fuck you to us, to Jack and even to Gracie.  There's not anything she can do though and we will have to wait again until Jan. 25th.  

I got a text message from Lori, Gracie's mom, this morning.  She left me numbers of people who could take care of Jack over the holidays, people I don't know and people Jack doesn't really know either.  It reminded me of my employer, as long as someone has a pulse, they can do the job.  Except no, they can't.  

Jack has lost his grandfather, now his mother is gone and today his grandmother, aunt and uncle are all also leaving.  He's lost a lot in the past two months and he doesn't know why.  Kids usually assume it's something they've done.  What he needs right now, more than ever, is stability and predictability.  He's going to have a good Christmas despite everything and strangers are not going to be taking care of him.

I don't think Gracie or her family understand how much their actions affect others, especially Jack.  Often times I am the same way, oblivious to the effect I have on others.  But I do try to be mindful and I do feel a huge responsibility to this small human who has been placed in my care.  

Merry Christmas, sincerely.

Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Moraine Lake.  We haven't been there in awhile but I wanted to see the mountains today.

We had the hearing.  Gracie didn't show up by phone and it was adjourned until January 25th.  I don't have a good feeling about it.  I guess we'll see.

Gracie's family told us and the social worker that they would help us out with Jack's care so I asked her today if they could help us out over Christmas.  Turns out they're all going away for a month.  So that's not support.  Merry fucking Christmas.  I'm going to go cry now.


I'm so angry right now.  I went outside and shovelled for an hour and I'm still angry.  Gracie and her family strike again.  Who cares about Jack?  Did they not even think he might like to see them over the holidays?  Do they even care?  Why did they even bother applying for guardianship?  They don't want to take care of him.  FUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And in the middle of all of this is a little boy.  And it breaks my heart because he didn't ask for any of this and neither did I.  I want to scream at the universe.

Thursday, December 9, 2021

I'm feeling much better but still bored.  I've been stuck at home since Sunday, sigh.  I'll live.  Yesterday I tried making cinnamon knots but wasn't paying attention and overcooked them.  I thought about throwing them out but couldn't and thought, bread pudding.  I need bread pudding like I need a hole in the head but it's better than throwing them all out.  I made a brandy sauce too which was quite tasty.

This morning a young man came to the house to do an energy audit.  We live in a very cold climate and anything we can do to reduce our energy consumption is something that we can do help with climate change.  Most things seem too big and too overwhelming but we can do small things.  The house wasn't as bad as I thought it was but there are areas to improve on, namely insulation in the attic and replacing the windows with energy efficient windows.  The guy also suggested a heat pump specifically made for cold climates.  He was a very nice young man who was fully immunized and also tired of stupid people.  

And taking pictures of food makes me feel somewhat sheepish.  Mostly it's for my daughter to see on instagram.  Yes, the same daughter who was so pissed off with me in May.  We're talking again but just superficially.  Maybe one day we can have a closer relationship.

The other night I missed a call from my brother, who never calls me, like never, so I called him back last night.  It was an accidental dial apparently, which happened when he was looking up our address for a Christmas card.  While we talked on the phone for a few minutes he was rearranging the dishes in the dishwasher because he doesn't like how his wife puts the dishes in.  When he was done with that, the period break in the Bruins' game was over and he wanted to go.  I thought he wanted to talk to me but sadly things don't really change.  I didn't realize how much I wanted a deeper relationship with him until after the call.  It is what it is.

The hagfish is on it's way out thank god.  

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

This is probably one of my favorite photos from my old house when I was still married to my ex husband.  That window was in front of my kitchen sink and had room for my radio and my plants.  The African violet was from a patient who died in the 1980's, Laura was her name.  When she died, nobody picked up her things and I thought that was so sad.  I took her violet home and took care of it for years before it too died.  The cat curled up in the sunshine was called Maggie and if you sat down, Maggie would sit on your lap.  

At the time I took this picture, 2010, I had no idea about apertures or bokeh, and the soft out of focus yard in the background was only a happy accident.  I've learned a lot about photography in the past eleven years and enjoy taking photos so much but between covid and Jack, photography seems to have been put on hold.  

When I was a young woman, I would have thought that this was the end.  I'll never get back to photography but as I've gotten older, I realize that life truly is just a progression of lazy circles that continue to turn and turn and turn.  When Jack is older, when I've retired, when I have time, I'll come back to it.  I still take tons of photos with my phone but I do miss my big camera.  

It's raining here today.  It's not supposed to rain here in the winter time.  It's dangerous because the rain freezes on the roads, making things slick.  I'm stuck in the house, still, feeling like crap, still, but I did pop outside to the backyard to take this photo.  Photos always make me feel good.  I know for a lot of people it's music, but for me, it's visual, images.

I hate sitting around doing nothing.  I'm bored out of my mind waiting for my sinuses to empty themselves out.  I've been in pyjamas since Sunday night, that's not right:)  I did manage a shower yesterday which was good but really, what's the point?  

Jack is well and when the big guy dropped him off at daycare this morning, the ladies there said Jack is always a happy boy since he started living with us.  That feels good. We made a difference in his life.  He's sleeping better and he no longer obsesses over "owies" like he did when he first came back from Victoria with me.  

We shall see what the future brings as it turns and turns again.   

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

I may be turning into a hag fish.  These fish produce copious amounts of slime or mucous and are considered a delicacy in South Korea.

An accident involving a truck which was carrying hag fish occured in Oregon in 2017.  The amount of mucous is truly epic in the photo, as is the mucous production in my sinuses right now.


That car, that is how I feel right now.

Sunday, December 5, 2021

Jack has given me another cold.  I've got a sore throat this time and I went for a covid test this morning.  Oh joy.

Gracie has gone into rehab and I hope and pray that it helps her.  Her mom and sister have applied for guardianship as well, but not day to day parenting.  They don't seem to understand how this thing works.  Gracie doesn't want us as guardians but wants us to take care of him for her.  The big guy and I decided that unless we become guardians as well, we will not be doing to the day to day parenting.  Her mother and sister will have to step up and do that.  I know for a fact that her mother has no desire to take care of Jack on a daily basis, even before her husband died.  Gracie and her sister seem a little clueless at times, but that is part of the problem.  So we're good enough to take care of her son but not good enough to be guardians of him.  I had a good cry about all of this on Friday when we were served papers by Gracie.  Fortunately it's up to the judge on the 14th and it's based on what's best for Jack, not his mother.

The charges in Victoria were also dropped we found out on Friday, another reason I cried.  The big guy thinks it's probably because there is such a backlog in the court system due to covid.  It doesn't change anything for me.  The bruises on Jack and his neglect happened on her watch.  She is responsible.

Way too much drama.

My niece and her boyfriend came over for supper last night which was so nice.  We haven't seen them since June.  It's nice to spend time with young people who aren't batshit crazy.  My niece graduates with her Masters in occupational therapy in two weeks and starts a new job in January.  Her boyfriend works with computers and coding.  They pay their bills and speak in full sentences.  It's so refreshing.

I have to stay at home today because I'm waiting for the covid results.  Not a huge deal as it's bloody cold outside.  It's a good day to not do too much of anything.  I did put up the tree though, so there's that.


Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Jack is back home as you can see.  We missed him so much but he was happy to come home and happy when he woke up this morning.  He didn't have a diaper rash so Gracie's mom did a good job of forcing Gracie to take care of him properly.  Gracie goes into rehab today which will be nice for us, no more awkward Wednesday evening visits.  She'll be gone for forty-two days, if she stays in rehab.  We'll see.  I believe she also has court tomorrow, via telephone or video, with regards to her assault charge in BC.  

It was nice having a break from Jack but I noticed the energy in our house was down while he was gone.  I feel better when he's around, more upbeat, even though I'm more tired.  Mind you I was beat after work on Monday and I didn't have to take care of Jack, so it's not just him that tires me out.  

Our guardianship hearing is in less than two weeks now and I try not to think about it.  I try not to think about the coming years either because who knows what will happen?  Certainly not me.  Ten years ago I never thought I'd be remarried and raising a grandchild but I am and I'm glad. 

Work continues on.  I'm less invested in the place which helps.  I stress less about everything and let things slide off my back more easily.  

One of the young nurses braided my hair at work yesterday and I loved how it looked.  I'm enjoying the long grey hair.  

I'm off today and I'm going to get a massage for my aching back.  Probably walk the dogs.  The weather is shockingly nice, 7C this morning.  

Things I'm thankful for today.

Jack is safe and home
A peaceful home
A home
Enough money to pay our bills
Good friends
Gingerbread scones

What are you thankful for today?