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empty nest syndrome

Friend Finder App: Unsticking The Dot

img_3811-1.jpgI’m not sure WHY everybody thinks it’s so weird that I followed my 16 yr old daughter to school after she first got her drivers license. I mean for crying out loud, doesn’t everybody?!! What do people expect me to do – thrust my tiny child (her is only 5 feet tall) onto the absolute maniac streets alone?!  What if she gets lost? She doesn’t have momma there to point out where to turn, when to pass, which way to go is the most efficient!? I mean seriously, after all, she is a real deal blond. Just saying….

There are real live dangers in today’s world…What if she stops for gas and is kidnapped by the gas attendant? It’s possible. Her is very cute after all….

What if she is mowed over by some buffoon half awake truck driver?!!!

With all these concerns, you can see why I followed my child to school everyday for a week. Now if you think this is weird, I’m supposing you will think what I did next was really weird. 

My friend MK told me about a phone app called Find Friends That way, a parent could see where their child is at all times. I don’t look at it as being overbearing more as I see it as taking a protective measure.

My child absolutely refused to keep the app on her phone. “You don’t trust me!” She wailed! “Nobody else has to do it!! And you’re the ONLY freak mom who followed her child to school every day!”

Her was completely uncooperative.

So as a single momma, I had to get forceful. “If you don’t install the app, I’m taking your phone away.” I informed my child.

Now this had her lil ears perked up. So she installed the app and the next day, I gleefully dashed to my new app and imagine my surprise when I discovered it was installed on MY phone so I could where I was but somehow she managed to uninstall the app on her own phone.

I took her stinking phone.

You can’t imagine how fast that app returned to not only my phone but Izzys too.

So a couple of weeks later, I am truly enjoying the Find Friends App. I look to make sure she has made it to school in the mornings and in the afternoon, I watch as the dot shows me she is at the mall safely.  It’s a very cool app. I even go so far as to inform her when I notice that she is in Dillard’s, that she doesn’t need to spend her lil money. I also give her gentle reminder texts such as “Mommy sees that you are Sonic. Don’t spoil your dinner!”

One would think that a child would appreciate such love and concern….

Izzy does not. I think her exact words are “you need to get a life instead of following me around..”

Hurumph!

The other morning we had a lil spat before school.  Izzy stormed out the door and headed to school. Even though It wasn’t a huge tiff,  I was a lil worried.  “What if she is so upset, she forgets there is a school zone one street over from us and she speeds right through it?! What if she has a wreck?!”

My heart begins to race.

I quickly dash to my phone to make sure she is safely at school. I Text.  Text.  Text.  No answer.  The lil dot on my app shows me she is clearly NOT at school. She is strangely stuck one street over. “She’s probably been pulled over and is hysterical by now!!” I tell myself.

And then I become hysterical myself thinking thoughts like “I bet that policeman is being so mean to her, she’s probably  sobbing; embarrassed and needs her momma!! BULLY POLICEMAN!!!!!” I try to take deep breaths.  I call her once. Twice.  “I bet that policeman has intimated her so much, she’s forgotten what to do if she gets pulled over!” (We’ve rehearsed several times) Or worse yet. There has been accident.

20 Minutes pass by since she has left the house.

The dot does NOT move…. It is still strangely stuck in one place …

I can take it no longer.  I dash out the house with my pajamas still on, my sons ski jacket and UGG boots. I tear down the street.  The phone rings and its Izzy. I snatch the phone up “Izzy, it’s ok, I know exactly where you are and mommy will be there in 30 seconds! Don’t panic!!!”

Izzy answers me: “Huh? What did you say, I can’t hear you with all these people in the hall. And why do you keep texting and calling me? I’m in class mom….”

“Errrrrrrrr.  Ummmmmm ok. So you’re not in a wreck right around the corner?” I ask, all aspirated.  “But the dot, I’ve been staring at the dot on my app all morning and it’s like strangely stuck in one place and it won’t move forward.”

“Uh no, mom. I’m at school… I’m totally fine. As far as that dot being strangely stuck and not moving forward….I dunno. Reset it and move on.”

Sheesh.

I hung up the phone and realized maybe it’s ME that’s strangely stuck; worrying too much about my lil girl growing up. She’s not two years old anymore …. Time to reset my way of thinking and get my own dot moving along the road once again.

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Empty Nest Syndrome…Is For The Birds…

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This is my son, Jake. Cutie patootie, right? He is 4 years old, loves apple juice, Thomas the tank engine, tearing through my house faster than the Tasmanian devil and endlessly watching The Lion King.   Oops. That was then….. Meaning 15 years ago. This is now:
Yes, he is 19 – a bit older. Would you believe his interests have somewhat changed?? He loves cooking anything greasy and or spicy, reading long theological books and randomly analyzing his mother and sister. When he graduates, He wants to be a psychologist and open up a clinic to help children with PDD. Being diagnosed at age 8 with Asperger’s syndrome, Jake is a success story and wants to help other children so – and I quote “they won’t grow up feeling like a total out – of- place idiot everywhere they go.”  In other words, My son wants to save the world…

As the end of His freshman year at college comes to a close, I have just one constant thought that dances through my mind –

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         Looks like we made it!!

(Oh Lawd how he would hate it if he knew I compared his life to a Barry Manolo song. Good thing that neither of my children are especially supportive of my blog. They have no idea whatsoever the cruel things I say about them.)

Anyhow, back to the pictures… and yes, I am well aware that they are screen shots from my Facebook but I have no idea how to save my pics and then post it. And the one person who does know is now off at college – hence the blog post on empty nest syndrome.

Any hoo- I received a phone call from our interim associate pastor today.

HER: Hi there – we are starting an empty nest support group and a little bird told me you might be interested.

ME: “Errrrrrrrrr. Ummmmmm.” I squeak; sucking back 2000 gulps of air. “Oh really, somebody told on me- I mean – somebody told you that?” My face burns and tears begin to collect in the corners of my eyes. “No! No! You’re mistaken. I’m doing much better. No support needed here!” I say trying to hold it all in. “I mean, seriously, it’s selfish to miss your child so much, right?” I say while hearing my voice cracking.

HER: “Well no, I think it’s normal and being around others that are sharing a similar struggle can be very soothing.”

ME: “Ohhhhhh ummmm thank you very much. I don’t need to be soothed. In fact, I think it may make things worse if I’m reminded that he’s no longer here. You know, the whole yanking the scab off a wound thing? My scab and I, we’ll think about your support group though and we’ll keep in touch.”  My scab and I tell her.

Now It’s one of those – I wish I hadn’t even answered the phone call days… The whole thing put me in such a puddle dither, it makes me sad all over again.  I don’t need some stupid support group. What are we gonna do, sit around with our snotty nosed mascara smeared faces  and boo hoo about the last bird that flew the coop?! No thank you.

I have to ask… What is it that makes some people go through this transition so much easier than others? Is it because they are not a single momma? If you’re married, You won’t be coming home to an empty nest. Not really. Big bird daddy will Still be around. Is it because others have better coping skills? A more vibrant career all set up? For the love of George Washington, I’ve still got one at home…how could I be sad?!??

ONE

ONE chickadee LEFT. THREE YEARS and then that lil bird will be flying away too. Uggggg!!!

Is it just me? Do I need to just get a life. I thought I had one….. Being a mother 🙁

My scab and I will report back to you in the near future with our decision on the support group. In the meantime, any and all advice is welcome.