Light Bulb Moment -maybe-

As you have read my last few posts show some struggles, ok, some crap I am pushing through. The first day after the abuse I took from the landlords and roommates, I spent the entire day in bed. I only got up to go the bathroom, that was it. I did not eat, not really slept, and the inside turned and I felt like that little girl waiting for her beating in the coal shed, and I had to get the strap myself. Nothing like delivering the weapon that is about to put you in serious pain. So sitting in my room still trying to find a way out of my once again impending homelessness and still scouring the internet for work I had a thought pop into my head.

“To thine own self be true”. Now I don’t want to get all religious on you, anyone who reads my writings knows my faith right now is as strong as a tight wire made of a single strand of human hair. My hair, so fine it would snap if a spider set upon it. There is NO WAY that will hold up to anything. But as I was sitting there day dreaming, as my mind wonders a lot. I thought “what the hell does that mean?” “why on earth did that pop into my head?” Then I realized my mind, subconscious or perhaps a higher power, who the hell knows, figured out what it means for me.

I have suffered crap since the day I was born, from my birth mother trying to kill me to abuse of any and all natures and then homelessness and now what happened a few days ago. There is one thing that made me get through it all. My father. Now that he is gone, my life seems to have taken even a stronger dive. What is the link. My father was able to change his ways and learn from his mistakes and became a really great man. One that I have not met since. But what I noticed about him is that he knew himself. He knew his weaknesses and he worked on them, but most of all he knew what he wanted to become. He knew the type of person he was, is, and always will be. He knew so well that I could lean on him and he helped carry me through stuff by just sitting in the seat beside me.

What do I know of myself? Who am I? What type of person am I? Am I a good mom, bad mom, or a fantastic mom? Am I charitable? A bully? Selfish? What am I really? If I am brutally honest with myself, no over thinking things, just stand outside myself and see myself for who and what I truly am and write it down. Don’t think about what I am writing down at this point, just think of any time I have been a bitch, bully, slut, and compare it to any time I have been charitable to others, been kind, helpful, caring, etc.

I realize that the world is not at all like it was when I was growing up. I remember people helping each other, strangers helping and friends were real true friends not superficial and what do they get out it. But I don’t want the modern selfish society to change what I know in my heart of hearts to be true, to be right, and to be admirable.

I realized that what if all those people in the world contemplating suicide, being abused, and depressed and struggling emotionally, mentally because they are from a different type of values that seems to no longer be in one with the non Christian world. Believe in religion or not, the fact that the world was ruled by the Christian values for many, many years. It has only been since Christianity is being attacked by non Christians and other beliefs that those core values of society have been altered, squashed and abandoned. Those still in the strong Christian moral value system are being under attack. So, even if you don’t believe in religion, do you still carry those core values? Are you kind at heart? Do you actually want to help others? Do you feel emotions so strongly you are empathic? Are you kind? Would you help a stranger just because they needed help? You don’t find humour in the modern idea of “reality TV” and the stupidity stunts and abuse of others? Do you care about the world and animals around you?

Why does this make any sense to me? If you know who you are, if you know without a doubt the person you are, and the person you are trying to become, that ultimate self that you are trying to be. So long as you are not trying to be someone else, but are trying to be who YOU are to be. Then it does not matter what the poo poo nay sayers are saying, who gives a shit what the judgy judgers are saying, and anything that is said about you, that is NOT WHO YOU KNOW YOURSELF TO BE, than you can disregard it. Toss it over the left shoulder into the abyss, and go on with your life. Doing what you know to be true, right, and worthy of you. Searching for like-minded people and leaving the rest in your dust. In the end, if, just if there is a judgement day, you can stand tall, head held high, and you will be successful over “those other people”. If there is not a judgment day and something else is among us after death, you can still stand tall and face whatever it is with those core values you know yourself to be. And you will make it through that too.

I believe we need to feel the pain, feel that hurt thrown on us. Think about it,and process it, but once we have felt it, processed the thought of it, we then can decide if it will continue, or be dismissed.

How do I learn about myself? Do I need to buy a fancy car or get a boob job or take a vacation to “discover” oneself? No. Nope, and No way. I feel we just need to sit down in a quiet place with a pen or pencil and paper or writing book. Then you start to ask yourself questions. Just like a writer asks their own characters who they are, to know them well, that is how you will know yourself well also.

I will post that in the next post how I am trying to work through this. Trying to reconnect with who I am and who I want to be? I don’t mean the house, cars etc, nothing of the world. I am talking deep in your soul, or perhaps you call it your chi, or maybe you call it your “self”. Either way, learn thy self is my new direction and focus.

Please share you thoughts on this, I would love to hear if anyone else has had an epiphany of how to overcome all of life’s challenges and is it working? have you needed to tweek it a little for situations? Does it keep you strong?

 

 

 

Stay Positive. Venting

I know I must stand tall, I know I must always show strength, never show fear. Be brave and speak true. Speak only when spoken to, not judge, think positive, keep an open mind and always be kind. This past few years I have done my best. But yesterday broke me.

WARNING:
Today I am venting, there is no angle, just letting it loose and saying it. There may be language that is offensive, or something. But if you are not interested in reading my vent, you might as well stop here. For those who read on, please realize that I am hurting right now. I am EXTREMELY hurt, alone, scared and angry. If you like to comment please do, I can use some encouragement. But if you want to add to my misery, don’t comment, I am literally at the end of my point of … well, I’m at my end.

I have lived through rape, beatings, molestation, survived abusive relationships, raised a child alone, and never did I feel like I had any support. My father was my only support, now he has been dead for many years. I did it all alone. Really, I’m not kidding. My family did not help, more so they criticized, ignored, and abused me. So when I got old enough I gave them a choice. Here it was.

1) I want a positive relationship. Start to be positive, supportive, and stop abusing me, stop criticizing me and stop being assholes.
Now I am not completely stupid, I know family goes through hard times, but what I want is for them to stop being selfish, to stop putting me down, to stop everything negative. I know family will have arguments, my family… I am a chew toy for them.

2) Be an active roll. No more neglect, no more “pretending” to be the perfect family in public and behind closed doors its a nightmare. No more neglecting me and only saying hi at weddings or funerals. I want an active role. Every month take 10 minutes out of the 720 hours in a month and write me a hello note with something positive, something they want to share with me so we can know each other better. To respond to my stuff, to be a real family. Seriously, 10 minutes to send an email, or a phone call or something and be positive. Try to be a friend.

If they can not do those two things, I want them to know they are off the hook. They don’t need to be in my life at all. Be kind, or go away.

Pretty harsh some may think, but by putting yourself in my shoes, all that abuse I listed, and more not listed, most was from family! Right now I am all but homeless. And still family doesn’t help. I have 6 siblings, and not one of them have offered to help. NOT ONE.

I was adopted, and that seems to have made a problem with some of them. I am not their sibling they feel. Yup, said it they did. So, how is that supposed to make a person feel. They grew up in a family and even though it was a not so good relationship, you find out you are not wanted? Not welcomed? Not a part of something you thought you were? I have read a lot of other adopted posts and notice a pattern. They too get siblings claiming they are not. These siblings are grown adults acting like selfish children. Bad enough to be born and not wanted, but raised in a place you are not wanted, and they let you know it.

Here is a good one, when I did something as a child that may have been bad or maybe it was not bad but needed some addressing, sometimes I would not get beat. Sometimes my dad would talk with me and explain what I did and work through with me. Sometimes. My siblings did not like this. they said, that they got hit, and so will I, so they would beat me. Like wow! My father was trying to change his ways, to learn, to be a better person, and my siblings wanted, desired and craved for me to suffer what they thought I should suffer. Just because they wanted it.

So, back to what I was saying, yesterday about broke me. This past 7 years my daughter and I have had an extremely hard time. Now we have been sleeping in our car. I managed to find a room for us to sleep in, but that is about to be gone. Last month I asked the landlord to verify the rent amount, she flipped out. You see she is renting this place without a contract, so there is nothing written down. So she said that she can’t have a renter who is going to question her. And she texted me to leave in 30 days.

Now in Alberta this is not legal of her to do. So I served my refusal letter and there was nothing more said about it. Yesterday she served me a letter to leave in 60 days because her sister is moving into my room. When I talked to her, I told her that that is not legal again. You must give 90 days notice and the family moving in you must evict the entire home. Plus she already has one bedroom dedicated to her sisters. Plus, there are three bedrooms that are empty, not rented. I told her I would talk to the landlord and tenant act and get back to her.

Then she arranged to have the other tenants in the house to start treating me badly. If they don’t they are gone. So yesterday I had 4 people and the landlords attack me, insult me, mock me, and on top of that speak with racist criticisms. They are all Filipino except one and one highly manipulative Russian who just paced in the other room happily. One of the tenants refused to join in, she sat in the other room and refused to be a part of it. She later told me that they are wrong and she wants to support me. But with 6 people attacking me and my daughter, it was just too much.

I lost my family that I tried to get to be a family, no church, lost my father who was my only support, lost our home, our cat died, lost my job. My church actually told me that they would let me sleep in their parking lot, that was their support. And now in the winter, I am dealing with this. My daughter is numb now, she feels nothing she said. My daughter closed out the world because of all the hurt. I injured my spine and am in constant pain and because I can stand, the disability funds are refused, so we have no money, just what is last left from being laid off. There is nothing in me left to fight.

Holy fuck! What am I supposed to do? I have looked every single day for work, I try to just let it all run off my shoulders but right now, a fucking pistol is looking fucking better than standing out in that freezing snow. I can’t sleep, I have electric pain piercing my body all the time, I can’t eat, I try to eat something and there is no taste. So why bother eating it.

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRRTRRRRRGGGGGGGGGGGGGG FFFUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKKK.

What am I supposed to do? I just wanted to get it off my chest. Just, yell it out that I don’t know what to do anymore.

I’m tired, really tired. It takes all I have to get out of bed, sometimes I if I managed to get a couple winks, it feels like it is all dream, none of this is really happening. I mean if you went into more detail you could make a movie on it, because it all doesn’t seem like it would really happen, but oh no, it IS happening to us.

 

 

Can’t I just get a pet instead?

Well our lives have not improved much since my “Hell Month” post I am sorry to share. However, I still want to continue writing and creating stories that hopefully inspire, so here is one I made up. Of course this did not really happen to me as I have no home. This did happen in my mind. I dreamed I lived in a two-story home in the good part of the city, that I’ve had more children, a great job and a busy life. I tried to imagine what it would be like to go on a date at my age. Sometimes I think we write from what we know and some of this is truth but not all. The truth is I have not been on a date in many, many years for the reasons in the story, so what would my date be like? This is what I came up with, I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did writing it.

 

Can’t I just get a pet?

Where did all the time go? Once I was a mother and wife. After the separation, I focused on raising children and work. Now the kids are almost out of the house and about to take on their own lives.  My house is getting more lonely and quiet. Now in my midlife I’m dating again? A blind date even, how nerve-racking is that? I didn’t even get to pick if I wanted to go on a date with this guy. I know nothing about him, what he looks like, where he works or even if he works.

I call my daughter on her cell. “Can’t I just get a cat or dog? I mean when the grandchildren come along the house will be alive again right?” I said.

My daughter won’t tell me anything so we would have something to talk about at dinner.

“This will take all of two seconds. Where do you work? I’ll ask. After getting released from jail and the doctor put me on some new trial drugs to keep my homicidal tendencies at bay, I decided to travel the world and really find myself. He’ll answer. There, now there is nothing left to talk about.” I said.

My daughter laughs at me and hangs up. She won’t tell me anything, I could use a bit of some information, my mind is running wild.

Looking into my closet I ask myself, what do you wear when you are about to go on a date with an experimentally doped up, homicidal maniac, freshly released from prison? With that in mind I’m reminded of my old girl scout motto, “Be Prepared”. I’ll wear a switch blade, pepper spray, panic siren, thigh pistol, mace, knock out gas, key lock iron chastity belt, and four armed guards. Yes, that should about cover it. Oh, don’t forget my cell phone.

You must know that I have not gone shopping for anything fashionable in at last 20 years. Yes, that is sad,but with work and trying to be the best mom ever I lost touch with myself. That is the reason my daughter is putting me on this date. I tear through my closet and dresser, getting more discouraged as I try on the last few items I own. Glancing around my room, I see that my grandmother’s closet has exploded, I have nothing to wear on a date. In despair, I sit on the side of my bed and cry, I can’t do this.

My daughter comes home to help me get ready. She finds me in my destroyed room, in all my nakedness, sobbing. I’m in misery and she walks in with this cheery, bright-eyed attitude, it makes me sick. I mean really, can’t she see I’m crying here?

“Come on mom, lets take another look at these clothes and get you ready for a great night out.” She said.

Oh, great, she is dressing me. Have I come the age where my children are dressing me? Is it time for me to enter the retirement home? In my miserable grumbling, I look in the mirror and admire her handy work.

“Dam girl, you should do this for a career. How’d you do this? I mean, wow.” I said

I look good, I feel good and I have the worlds greatest daughter. Tonight, is already fantastic. I don’t need to go on a date, this night is so good we should do a girl’s night. But she wouldn’t let me change the agenda, apparently, it’s prophesied that I’m going on this date.

Unable to argue with a prophesy I finish my make up and hear the door bell ring. I feel a lump in my throat, my stomach has twisted, I’m sweating and I think I’m going to throw up. My daughter bounces down the stairs and lets him in. I try to listen from the top of the stairs but she is whispering that little brat, she’s doing this so I can’t hear a thing and curiosity will get the best of me. I take a few deep breaths and head downstairs.

All I can think of as I walk down the steps is, do I have knock out gas? We are now standing in front of the door and he is good-looking, doesn’t look doped up or homicidal at all. Not that I would know what doped up homicidal maniac looks like. I figure I can leave the body guards at home.

“Hi, I’m Mike, your daughter has told me so much about you. You look very pretty.” He said

Well that is not a disadvantage at all, he knows a lot about me and I just found out his name.

“Hi, and thank you. You look good as well. Shall we go?” I said. Gee that didn’t sound like a robot at all. I feel like such an idiot.

I have decided that sharing the vehicle ride to the restaurant is just not a good idea. I think that the awkward silence should’ve been at the dinner table, so we could shove some food in our mouths.

While at the restaurant things start to relax a bit, perhaps it’s the bread sticks? We start to talk and find a few things in common. We are both parents, both separated and both have not been on a date in years. The night is going so well so he asks if he can take me dancing. I love dancing, not that bar scene type, I’m talking the tango, or even a country square dance is great too. He said he knows just the place.

We danced the whole night, there was a beautiful woman asked him to dance with her, he told her he was on a date with me and declined the invite. Wow, what a guy. He wanted to dance only with me, talk about make a woman feel like she is on fire.

Like all good things, must come to an end. Both of us not knowing what to do on the first date we kept it casual and just said good night with a kiss on the cheek. We are going out again. I decided blind dates aren’t so bad.  I entered my house to find my daughter standing at the door waiting for me.

“You’re home late.” She said

“yup” I said

She started jumping around screaming and yelling, “moms got a boyfriend, moms got a boyfriend”. It felt really good to feel like I was 16 again. Who ever said dating later in life is unnecessary is a loser. I strongly any one of you singles out there to get out and go on a date. It brings you to life again, maybe even a few years younger.  Maybe if you find the right match, it could be something more.

 

Tina Curtis

 

This year I wanted to do something special for mom, she is in her 80’s and I wanted to maybe make her feel young, to remember some of the great days of her life. So how could I do this? I stumbled upon Finnabair Art,  she does multimedia style art and it inspired me to make mom’s birthday gift. I also wanted to make it a little more special, more for mom directly and no one else so I made it kind of like finding Waldo with hiding special items in it that she has to hunt for. Also a great mental exercise for seniors to keep the mind active while triggering memories.

This picture is a photo of my mom I am told between the ages of 16 to 18, no one seems to remember. The textures are to create depth and touchable response that helps with mental focus and stimulation of seniors mental health. My mother is miles away from me but I hope she felt like I was right there with her through the personality splashing out from this art project for her.

Mom birthday gift
Mom birthday gift

Here is the Letter I wrote her that goes along with this multimedia picture.

Happy Birthday Mother

Good and wonderful birthday wishes to you on this special day. Today we celebrate your life and here is my gift to you, a multimedia art that I designed so when you read this letter with it, it is in hopes that you will feel me there with you and that you can interact with this unique gift. Firstly as you read this the words that are in a different colour are the ones that you will need to find in the art. (Kind of like finding Waldo game) Let us begin!

I remember those blue eyes that would watch over me, to keep me safe. I loved the days that you, me, and dad would pick pine cones all summer, so we would have money. How we would listen to the waves in our living room with a shell. Strengthening our imagination.

You would teach me to crochet (knit), and sew, so I would never be without. And the large tin of buttons I would play in. You and father would spend hours gardening, teaching me how to grow food, so we would be healthy. Then at harvest we would pick fruits and can food all week-long for the long cold winters.  You would teach me how to care and love the animals from thechickens to the cat, to all creatures big and small.  We would feed the blue birds on the landing every summer. I remember you chasing the cow away from your tomato plants, and how the cowwould love it when you would chase him, so much love with all our home, you and dad gave the gift of love, like a flower made of hearts it bloomed all year-long, so precious like a diamond heart.The time our family would take to read the scriptures, and sit together as a family and talk, play games on family night every week. Every summer we would wash our clothes in the old wringer washer and hang them with clothes pin on a line to dry in the sun. When I got stung by bees you would put an onion on the stinger to get it out and make it feel all better. You would teach me about the butterfly, the ladybug, the bees the birds and the flowers, all had a job in the circle of nature. You even taught me proper etiquette, manners matter and how to use my knife, spoons and forksIt is because of you that I am who I ­­ today, I am thankful that you are my mother.

Love and miss you

Tina

Thank you shower songs and Ms. Zimmerman

 

I love to sing and to hear my daughter play her flute or play the piano and now learning the guitar. It is so important in our lives I feel to explore music, even if you are tone-deaf. Music seems to instantly affect one self, it seems to create an opinion and strong feelings immediately. There is nothing else I have ever come across that can bring on such feelings so quickly other than paintings and even they do not seem to bring on such strength in emotion as quickly or as strong as music can.

I sing all the time and there is a running joke with my daughter and me she sometimes says while we are listening to the radio.

“I like the way the original singer sings this song.”

I reply “Actually this is the original singer.”

“No it’s not.”

“Ha-ha yes it is the original singer, who do you think it is that sang this song first?”

“It is a female voice, sometimes it is gentle and soft and sometimes it is strong and has that cool rasp”

“I only know of this singer, what year was that?” as I try to figure out who she is thinking of.

She continues to try to place who it is she is thinking about and explains other songs they may have sung. The list is so random of songs that I am completely lost as they seem to be all over the place of songs for one artist. A few seconds later we decide when we get home we will YouTube it and see what we can find. The music starts to make me want to join along and sing and as I sing my daughter start to laugh.

“Ha-ha I know who it is that I am thinking of, YOU! You really need to record music mom.”

I always reply “That’s just you looking through your mommy I love you eyes.”

They say that if you are musically inclined or talented you are also very good at math. Well that must be some magic marker that tells people if they are good or not because I play the piano and sing but math is the worst subject in all the subjects of the world. I just can’t seem to get it, I mean I get it but I can’t seem to do well at it, it takes me time to figure most math problems out. I had a woman come into a store once and I made a mistake with her order in returning her change. I was overpaying her $0.30. It was nice of her to let me know I made this error many people would have just walked off if they noticed a mistake in their favour. So I grabbed my calculator and figured it out, she became rather upset with me that I needed to verify with a calculator.

“Math is not hard, it is easy!” she angrily said.

“Too you perhaps and that is great, I am glad you can do mental math quickly and easily but for me no matter how much I try it never seems to stick for me. I am sorry but I am trying to help you the best that I can.”

We figured it out and she of course continued to try to make me feel like an idiot before she left. So that proves I just have a hard time with math. With music however when I would play all the time I could not only read but also play by ear. I could hear something once and then in a few moments be playing it on the piano, it was easy and fun for me. I have not played piano for many years now I never seem to have the time. I sat down the other day to play and it was gone, all that ability was gone. If you don’t use it you lose it is true, I practiced like I was back in the beginning lessons with Old McDonald farmer song for heaven sake. As I played it slowly came back bit by bit but it would have taken sometime longer to get to where I used was. So since I can’t lug around a large heavy piano I use the built-in instrument, my voice.

I don’t’ think there is ever a day that goes by without music and singing in my life. If there is a day that must be the days I am really low and depressed, even then I sing sad songs. My daughter is exploring jazz music right now, that is fun to listen to her explore this whole different world of music and not too often do you hear artists these days that do a real good scat like those old-time songs.

There was some time back a year that we had nothing, absolutely nothing and barely a roof over our heads, time was very hard and we had no music also. It was a dark hole and one thing that helped us get out of this pit of darkness, you guessed it, music. When the world around is dark, life is hard, painful and miserable, just hold up your head and sing. Sing anything, and before long you will feel again. If you can’t carry a note who cares, it is what is in you and it makes you feel so do it, SING!

As everyone knows I am sure the acoustics in most washrooms or shower rooms is fun to use when singing. I have a cat that is actually very opinionated about music, she will actually wag her tail and take a beat if she is liking your music and she will pure with enjoyment. If she hate the music she runs away and hides. But the one place she loves to be is sitting on the toilet lid while someone is in the shower. Maybe it is the heat given off from the warm water or maybe it is the acoustics of the washroom. But if you have a shower and she is not in there fast enough she will call to you the entire time you are in the shower telling you to let her in the washroom so she can sit on the toilet and listen to whomever is singing in the shower.

I started to think about where this love of music may have come from, was I born with it or family at church and home, my parents sang all the time also. I liked it but being made to study piano 3-5 hours or more a day I hated it. I developed carpel tunnel syndrome for so much piano playing and I hated the piano. I really wanted the guitar but was never allowed because my father loved the piano sound and he said one of his children will play the piano. I learned from that little experience to never force and instrument on a person so I let my daughter start her music off on the piano and she hated it after a year and she then chose the flute and her love of music grew. So where did my love of music come from? I remembered my teacher in a small town in Sparwood BC. She was the best music teacher I have ever had, and better than any teacher I have seen my daughter have. Her name was Ms. Zimmerman. She loved music so much that she poured that love and enjoyment into our classes. Our classes were hard but choir was such a growing class for me, growing as I learned team work in a sense of harmony, and courage to sing in front of others, and I learned to love the music at a time I was hating music because of the 3-5 hours of piano a day. I am so grateful for Ms. Zimmerman, thank you for bringing music into my life and sharing your passion with me. It felt personal the time she spent with each one of her students, one on one and anything else you needed she was there to guide us and show us how beautiful music is. As my daughter was growing up a remember using Ms. Zimmerman lessons to teach my daughter, the fun warm ups and the most amazing part is when my daughter was little she has a speech impediment. She could not say many things and we started to use Ms. Zimmerman’s warm up tunes and tongue twisting tunes, and those strange sliding tunes to help my daughter learn to use her tongue and air better and she learned to speak. It worked so well she was not needing speech lessons for long, so if you know someone whose speech is difficult or child with speech problems this is a great and very fun way to get a tongue to work better. Music has such a huge impact on our lives from creating emotion to better speech and better confidence. Thank you Ms. Zimmerman for improving my life and the life of my daughter through music, you mean the world to me.

Where ever you are, thank you.

T.C.