Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Good news finally.  Both Lori and I have been granted temporary guardianship of Jack for six months.  There's more stuff that needs to be done and addressed but we will be part of those discussions and decisions.

I am thankful.  And I'm talking to a lawyer this afternoon.

Sunday, January 23, 2022

I described myself on Steve Reed's blog as tired, bitchy granny on the prairies and then thought to myself, that sucks.  I looked back at my blog posts over the last three or four months and they are tired and bitchy and I don't want to be that.  I do get tired and I do get bitchy but what?  I don't want to be bitchy all the time.  I don't want to be tired all the time.  I'm happy with the granny bit though:)

Jack came back to us on Thursday and he was happy to be home.  He took all of his toys out, named each one and put them on the coffee table.  I missed his mess so much.  I also missed making things with his lego.

I'll skip over the crap and say that yesterday we took him to his swimming lesson.  He's young enough that an adult has to be with him so I put on a bathing suit and went into the pool with him.  It was so much fun.  I haven't been around little kids in the water for years and it's wonderful.  Their joy and ability to play is infectious.  

After swimming, while we were changing in the change room he quizzed me on body parts.  Not at all awkward but it was truthful.  I'm guessing Gracie will hear about pubic hair and tattoos.  Then he locked me out of the change room when I to get his socks and boots out of the locker.  Fortunately he unlocked the door quickly, but he did think it was terribly funny.

We dropped him off at his grandma's at supper time and the big guy and I went out for supper at our favorite Italian restaurant which was nice.  We don't get much time to ourselves and it was good for us.  Then I slept for ten hours straight last night. 

This morning I found a blogger who shares my sense of humor.  

We're off shortly to pick up Miss Katie for lunch and I made an appointment for her to get a haircut as well.  I balked at the price, $60, but then realized that she can well afford it.  If she has too much money in her bank account the government will cut her off.  Right now her bank account looks like she's saving up to make a down payment on a house.  She doesn't really care about things and has all that she wants so I guess a good haircut is not unreasonable.

This afternoon I'll take the dogs out for a good walk as the weather is so warm right now, although I just saw that rain is forecast again.  WTF, when did rain in Alberta winters become a normal thing?

Thursday, January 20, 2022

We got the results of Miss Katie's genetics testing and they were inconclusive.  There was a de novo deletion on one gene and it was deemd a variation of uncertain significance.  The good news is, that because it was de novo (something went wrong in the formation of the egg or sperm), it won't be present in our other children or grandchildren.  It won't be passed on, won't affect anyone other than Katie.

We had our meeting yesterday with Gracie, her family and the social worker.  Everyone was pretty angry and there were loud voices and tears but eventually things got worked out, a little.  I am so impressed with our social worker.  She is so calm and does such a good job of getting upset, stressed people back on track and focused on the main concern, Jack.  

Gracie's family came back from Mexico last Saturday.  On Sunday Gracie and her brother picked up Jack and wanted to have him for three or four nights.  We said no, one night and please take him to daycare in the morning.  Of course they didn't take him to daycare, the roads were bad they said.  There was a weather alert, travel was not advised which they abided by because it suited them.  When the government of Canada said please don't travel in December, it didn't apply to them because they wanted to go to Mexico.  They did finally get hold of the social worker and she gave the okay for Jack to stay with him for three nights until we had our meeting yesterday, which is all we wanted, communication with the social worker.

The social worker told Gracie and her family that she needs to see Gracie sober for three or four months prior to Gracie having unsupervised visits.  Lori, Gracie's mom, said, "Well it's already been three months."  The social worker said, no, from now, not from when Jack was taken into care.   

We all talked about how much time Jack should be spending with his mom and where.  Gracie will live with Lori while she needs to be supervised they said and they pretty much wanted Jack back full time which is when I started crying.  What was agreed on is we will have Jack Wednesday at supper until Saturday at suppertime.  Gracie and Lori will have him for the rest of the time.  

Even though this was agreed to, Jack still didn't come back to us last night because, well, you know, blah, blah, blah.  Gracie's family always pushes the limits.  Lori wants to keep Jack until next week because she wants to work on some intensive potty training.  It sounds so reasonable but there will always be something.  My hubby is picking Jack up tonight on the way home from work today.  I'm home again, sick with a snotty cold.  

Gracie's family was also upset that we had applied for parenting and guardianship.  It was pointed out that children's services asked us to do that and when we had our hearing in December, Lori did not want day to day parenting when asked by the judge.

After Gracie and her family had left, the social worker told us that she was pretty sure that Gracie would start drinking or using again which is good and bad.  We want it to happen while children's services is still involved because they have the power to tell Gracie and her family what's what.

My feeling is that Gracie thinks that she will be fine.  She'll get a job, nine to five, get a daycare, get her driver's licence and life will be just fine.  She hasn't been able to hold down a decent job since she became an adult.  She has been talking about her licence for as long as I've know her.  She started drinking and using when Jack was a month old.  Her and her family live in denial it seems to me but I guess time will tell.

In the meantime, my husband is mad as hell and wants to hurt someone or break something.  And I don't blame him, I do too, but it's hard.  Anger, even my own, scares me.  

I saw this online and it made me smile.  

Saturday, January 15, 2022

The little guy and I took Heidi for a walk to the dog park in an effort to get all of us some exercise and fresh air.  Mission accomplished.  We found two balls and Jack and I took turns throwing them for Heidi and she chased after them.  We walked to the small hill there, through the deep snow because Jack did not want to stay on the path.  He kept getting stuck in the snow and I had to keep rescuing him.  We slid down the hill once and then started back to the car.  Nana got a lot of exercise then,  carrying him, dragging him on his back which was great fun apparently, and pointing him in the right direction over and over again.  Mission accomplished though, fresh air and exercise for all involved.

I took this photo of Heidi this morning.  I can't help myself.  I think she's so beautiful and so sweet.

At lunch time, Jack and I picked up Gracie and we drove to one of the swimming pools here.  Gracie has talked about swimming lessons for the last two years and has never done anything about it.  In December, I signed Jack up for swimming lessons and today was the first day.  Gracie didn't look like she had much fun but Jack had a great time.  Supervised visits continue.  

I may get back to swimmng.  I love swimming and miss it but I do hate putting on a swimsuit now, actually I've never really liked swimsuits.  When I was young I thought I was too thin and now I think I'm too jiggly and plump.  We're never really happy with our bodies, are we?  Fucking advertising.

I joined a literary jokes and puns group on Facebook.  They make me smile, daily.

Thursday, January 13, 2022

We've had a lot of snow and cold weather but this week it warmed up and today it's raining.  You can imagine what that does to the roads.  This morning on the way into the city, there were eight cars and trucks in the ditch.  I stayed in the city to get my booster shot and then drove home; the roads much improved but still a school bus and a SUV added to the mess in the ditches.  

I took a vacation day today and now I have a four day weekend which is just lovely and seems to stretch endlessly in front of me.  I'm feeling better than I was the other day.  Writing and remembering the bad stuff that's happened over the past three years knocked me down.  

Then yesterday my son started phoning me.  He called ten times and left a lot of messages.  He's back in jail, maybe, I'm not really sure.  There was another incident with his wife, the police were called and he was taken into custody, again.  The rambling messages he left me seemed like confabulation, "Confabulation is the creation of false memories in the absence of intentions of deception. Individuals who confabulate have no recognition that the information being relayed to others is fabricated."
He wove together a story that invovled some truths, some lies and probably some things that have stuck in his brain for a long time.  He talked about dirty cops, evidence being planted, his other son needing a brain shunt, pediatric hospitals, abuse, teeth and dentists.  I listened to all of the messages and made notes.  His wife is going to move now and hopefully, won't let him back in, again.

I think years of drug use have fried his brain and I grieve for my son but I will not let him back into my life.  

Last night Gracie came over to see Jack after we got home.  A friend brought her and when I asked the friend if she was vaccinated, she said no and I asked her to please leave.  She then grabbed Jack, kissed him all over his face and then argued with my husband before leaving.  That was not pleasant but when Gracie was alone, she was good.  

She looks better than I've ever seen her.  I've only ever know Gracie pregnant or drunk or high.  She's sober and makes sense.  She's been doing a lot of work on herself  and she understands that she has a lot more work to do.  Best of all, she paid attention to Jack and it was wonderful to see.  He was happy to see her and to be seen by her, and she was happy to see him.  Gracie talked a lot and I listened.  I have hope, I always hope.  I guess only time will tell what happens.

The rest of Gracie's family comes home from Mexico on Saturday, so I guess we'll see what kind of a shit show that is.  But right now, today, Jack knows his mama loves him and she showed him that she loves him.  And how wonderful is that.


Tuesday, January 11, 2022

I was feeling down today, weepy, and thought I might take tomorrow off if I could get a vacation day.  Then I spoke to a young nurse I work with whose 38 year sister is dying of brain cancer and I gently pulled my head out of my ass.

Yesterday I had a 42 year old patient who was diagnosed with metastatic pancreatic cancer.   

Yesterday I documented everything that's  happened over the past three years with Gracie and it sucked me down into a dark hole.

I'm thankful Jack is safe and loved.   

Saturday, January 8, 2022

The sun in Edmonton moves all year long.  In the summer it rises in the northeast and in the winter it rises in the southeast.  

It's not hard to the see the sunrises in the wintertime, they're not until 9am in December.

Thursday, January 6, 2022

I made it through Christmas break, only to crash and burn on Monday.  Jack went back to daycare on Monday and we still had the day off so I cleaned and then started sewing as I wanted to make some curtains for the spare bedroom downstairs.  As I was sewing, I got a phone call from one of Gracie's friends telling me that she wanted to take Jack out for a few hours and when would be a good time.  I told her no thank you, we were fine and then she started to get aggressive.  I told her no a few times and then I got flustered and just hung up.  Then she started texting me and telling me, "I should be an adult and use my words."  The texts got increasingly aggressive and I blocked her number.  She was pissed because she said she was Gracie's sister, she's not, she's a good friend and I get that, but she's also an ex con whose a child of her own who wants nothing to do with her.  And covid.

That upset me and then I started getting messages from Mexcio, from Gracie's sister.  She told me, "Get off your high horse lady cause you're only making sure Jacks not in your life...".  There was a lot of other nasty stuff and then, "Whatever it's irrelevant long story short stop creating issues and problems unnecessarily.  Gracie's about to have Jack back and if you don't smarten up you're gonna find karmas gonna return all the difficulty's that you're putting out".

Even writing this stuff out makes my hands shake, my heart pound and my eyes tear up.  I have been entrusted by the province to take care of my grandson and Gracie's family is pissed off at me for doing what I'm supposed to do.  They're also angry with me because I said it would have been better for Jack to have his extended family around this Christmas because he's already lost so much this past year.

I get why they're hurting but so is Jack.  His mom and grandpa were gone this Christmas, actually everyone but me and my husband were gone this Christmas.  When I bring that up, I'm the bad guy and I'm tired of it.  They didn't want to care for Jack.  The judge specifically asked them if they wanted to care of Jack and they said no but they're angry with how I'm caring for him.

I worked my ass off on Tuesday, we were down two nurses, but it was good because I didn't have much time to think about the nasty messages.  At the end of the day I shared the messages with a couple of coworkers and they couldn't believe how horrible the messages were.  That helped because I was wondering if I was just being overly sensitive, which is something I've often been accused of, but no the messages were threatening and offensive.

I also spoke with the social worker this morning who reassured me that Gracie will not be getting Jack back until after she has proved to children's services that she can remain sober and care for him.  The social worker also said that she would apprehend Jack if Gracie didn't abide by their rules which would include continuing with supervised visits.  I felt better after I talked to her as well but I've spent the day cooking and trying to not think about all of this.  Cooking helps, somewhat, and of course it's always good to have supper ready ahead of time.  I'll share the cinnamon knots with my neighbor and her kids.  I may have eaten three of the cinnamon knots already, still warm from the oven, so not just stress baking but also stress eating.

Over the past few weeks I started thinking about how much time Jack has spent with us over the past year.  I keep track of things on a calendar and I've kept track of how often Jack has been with us;  in the past year, he has spent 194 days with us, or 53% of the year with us.  He's spent more time with us than his own mom.  I'll bring that up at court as well.  I think I'll write everything down because I get flustered easily and lose track of my point when I'm just talking.  I also don't want to piss people off, even though it appears that I still piss people off, but the next court hearing will be me advocating for Jack, not his mom and not his extended family, just Jack. 

Monday, January 3, 2022

This photo was taken a week before Christmas.  Since then it's been too cold to walk.  We had a 24 hour period this past weekend that would have been warm enough to walk outside but it passed while we took Katie out.  Miss Katie is over her covid with no lingering problems, something for which I am deeply thankful.  All the runny noses, coughs and other symptoms have cleared up in our house as well, again, very thankful.
Jack has gone back to daycare today.  He never even said goodbye or turned around to wave as he went through the door.  I think he was a thankful as we were that the Christmas holiday was over and life could return to normal.  

We had a video chat with Gracie on Saturday.  I had already told her about the black eye and what had happened.  She said, "See, black eyes can happen anytime to kids."  I don't disagree with her, it happens put I did point out to her that I wasn't drunk at the time.  She didn't appreciate that but I'm done with sugar coating everything.  She seems to think that she'll get out of rehab and Jack will come home and everything will go back to how it was.  I did say that she can come over to visit Jack when she gets out next week.  Her family isn't home until the 15th, so she can't leave our house with him.  If she does try that the social worker had told her that he would be taken into care and she would lose custody.  Hopefully she remembers that.  

It's snowing here right now.  We're supposed to get 5-10cm and it's cold, -24C and with the wind chill, it feels like -34C, so frostbite.  A good day to stay inside.  I vacuumed the house and washed the floors.  I think I'll spend the rest of the day sewing and listening to the radio.  I do lead a reckless life:)

Happy New Year to everyone and lets hope it doesn't suck as bad as the last two years.