Article | The Lifelong Challenges of Adoptees

We all face challenges in our lives. These challenges, no matter how big or small, shape us. Imagine, if you will, that all you have ever known in your life is challenge. Continue reading “Article | The Lifelong Challenges of Adoptees”

Daily Prompt 2/14/2016 | Thanks, Hindsight

The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt 2/14/2016 | Thanks, Hindsight

“How is the year shaping up for you so far? Have your predictions come true, or did you have to face a curve ball or two?”

This year started out rough, and hasn’t showed any signs of improving thus far. The optimist in me wants to believe that, even though it had a rough start, it will be a better year than last year… but the realist in me knows that will probably not happen. That’s just how it goes for me. Unless Kyle and I find some way to get away from the toxicity in this area, then it just won’t happen. I’m tired of people telling me things like, “Life is what you make it.” and other similar, meaningless phrases, when that simply isn’t true. Why on earth would I want to put myself through these types of things? Or my family? Life can be shit sometimes, and more often than not, I didn’t make it that way, and can’t do much about it.

If there were one thing that I wish I could have seen coming, it would be all of this unnecessary, ridiculous drama with Kyle’s family. Specifically, about this car situation, which we are finally done with. If you don’t know about all of that, you can read about it here. Kyle’s mom took the Journey off of our hands, and we have our Lincoln, and that is that. I should have seen it coming, as his family is comprised of mostly controlling, overly dramatic women, each generation more petty than the previous one, and they have always ganged up on him, twisting his words, digging up things from the past, and purposely trying to make him angry. They do it with each other as well, constantly fighting and being immature, but whenever Kyle is around, he is their target. Always. There is no reason for it, and it is usually unprovoked. There isn’t a damn adult in the whole bunch, I swear. You may think I am biased, as Kyle is my partner, but rest assured, when he is guilty of being an ass, I call him out on it myself.

Let me give you a little background. Before Kyle and I met, his family was brutal. His grandmothers, specifically, can be just awful, and they passed that down to his mother and aunts, who then passed it down to his sisters. No joke, it is a trickle down of pure bitchiness. When we started dating, his sisters eased up a bit, but his mom was… insane. There is an age difference between Kyle and I of almost 5 years, but he was 18 and legal when we started dating. His mother was not okay with this, despite letting his sisters, who were 22 and barely 16 at the time, go wild. I don’t even drink, and neither does Kyle, but she was convinced that I was going to destroy his world. Or something. She even used an app to track his iPhone, and would drive to wherever we were hanging out, and stalk us. Even in broad daylight. Let me remind you, he was 18 years old at the time. His oldest sister already had a child, and the youngest was mouthy, sleeping around, and drank constantly. All under her roof. Heck, when the youngest was nearly 17, she had a pregnancy scare from a one night stand during a party at her mom’s house, while she was out of town, and her mom was a little too okay with it. Yet when we excitedly announced that we were expecting our son a few years later, we faced a lot of harsh criticism and skepticism from the entire family, despite having a place of our own, steady income, and a strong relationship.

They eased up a bit once they realized that I wasn’t going anywhere, because they saw that I didn’t allow that kind of garbage to happen around me, especially when he doesn’t deserve it, and I spoke up. They have since stopped caring. Half of the time, it seems like they are joking, but I know better. They don’t drag me into things, and leave me out of aggressive group conversations, I think because I am intimidating or something, which has worked out for me. Unfortunately, since I do get left out, I have to hear everything from Kyle secondhand, and he doesn’t seem to realize that I know when he is lying to me, or stretching the truth. Even when I call him on something that I know isn’t true, he gets defensive. Why? Why do people do that?

Anyway.

So, yeah, if I had foreseen all of this hostility surrounding us purchasing the Journey from his aunt, I would never have allowed Kyle to do it. We even had reservations at the start, because loaning/buying from family can get really messy. And it certainly did. This all could have been avoided had his aunt been upfront with us on exactly how much we would be paying, but instead, she took advantage of our desperation for a vehicle, and gave us a car that we could not afford in the long run, then hid that from us for months. When we confronted her about somehow still owing over $700 more than the original price that we were told, after having paid over $1000 into the loan already (not even including the $1,100 that we’ve put into it in repairs, because we were lied to about the condition of the vehicle by everyone who already knew), she got defensive, and dragged Kyle’s grandmother and mother into the conversation, where they had no business being. Instead of owning it, and handling it like an adult, she acted like a child, and pulled two more immature parties into the situation, who did nothing but spout out ignorance, and ask bad questions.

That was what pissed me off.

His grandmother even took is upon herself to inform Kyle’s aunt that we were planning on getting rid of the Journey, and were looking for a new car. The kicker? She didn’t know that. Nobody did. We had decided the night before that we were going to do that. She was just trying to create drama, and she succeeded. In the days following, just like the month before, we were called ungrateful, among other things, for not wanting the vehicle anymore. I think they were just upset that they were losing a small amount of control that they had on us.

So, no, this year is not going as well as I had hoped, and I refuse to believe that it will get much better. Whenever I try to be positive, and let any amount of hope into my life, it all comes crashing down anyway, and I end up hurt and disappointed. So why bother?

Damn, I got myself all worked up writing this post out. Crazy families, man. What can I say? I’m going to go watch some Flashpoint on Netflix with my fiance (amazing show, check it out), and enjoy the last few hours of Valentine’s Day. Hope you’re all having a good day, however you choose, or don’t choose, to celebrate.

Thank you for reading, friends.

Jan

Dream Journal 1/15/16

Present day.

Kyle and I have just finished a date night, we are both dressed up. Liam is at his grandmother’s. We stop at a gas station convenience store to get snacks before going home. We are waiting in line with several other people, when three men wearing masks come running in, waving around guns, and telling us all to get down.

Terrified, we all get down on the ground, while the three men go to the counter and demand money. The leader of the group seems anxious, and he is threatening the cashier, pointing the gun right in his face, screaming at him to hurry. The other two guys repeatedly tell him to calm down, and that they just want the money, they don’t want to shoot anybody. The cashier reaches for the alarm button, and the robber shoots him in the head.

We all scream. There is a middle-aged couple in the store with us, as well as a man who later explains to us that he is an ex-marine, and a young mother with a little girl. The two other robbers rush to the leader, and an argument ensues. They are angry that he shot the man, and they didn’t want to hurt anyone. The leader shoves one of the men and hits him with his gun, knocking him out. The other robber runs out the door.

The leader begins pacing, talking to himself angrily, while waving his gun around. The man on the floor starts moving again, and he pulls him up violently, yelling at him for not following orders. While they argue, the ex-marine quietly instructs us how to get out. He motions for the young mother and her little girl to get to the door quietly, and they manage to get out without the men noticing.

Next, the older woman and I are told to go. We crawl to the door, breaking into a sprint at the threshold. We join the woman and her daughter in the parking lot, who are already calling 911. Next, all three men make a break for it, but the armed men notice, and start firing.

They manage to make it out the door… but aren’t fast enough. Kyle and the ex-marine are both shot several times in the chest, and collapse on the curb. The two men take off running.

I scream, rushing over to Kyle, who has two holes in his chest, and blood trickling from his mouth. He is struggling to breathe, yet tried to speak to me. I cradle his head in my arms and sob, urging him to save his breath, and begging him not to die. After several minutes, the older woman pulls me away. I look down at Kyle’s lifeless body, and collapse back to the ground. I crawl over to him and try to give him CPR, but he is gone. I grab his hand, kiss it, and pull off his wedding band, slipping it into my pocket.

The police come to take our statements before releasing us all to go home. I watch them cover Kyle’s body and load him into an ambulance. They don’t bother turning on the lights as they drive away. The older woman and her husband offer to drive me to my mother-in-law’s, and we get into their truck. I take out my phone to call her, but my entire body is numb and heavy, and I can’t move.

When she answers, she doesn’t seem to notice my violent, hysterical sobbing, and brightly talks to me about our plans for Liam’s first birthday. She asks where Kyle is, and all I can do it hang up. We get to her house, and the couple helps me inside, where Kyle’s mom and two sisters are waiting. They don’t seem to notice the blood on my hands, face, and clothes, or my red eyes, still crying.

I collapse to the floor as the woman and her husband tell them what happened. I can’t hear them, but I know they mention Kyle, as his mom falls back onto the couch in tears. She then turns to me and says that I need to find a job now, or I will lose our apartment. She asks me who is going to take care of Liam, and if she can have our vehicle, since I can’t drive.

Liam walks over to me and gently tugs on my hair as I curl into a ball in the middle of the floor, shaking and crying. The older woman is patting my shoulder, telling me everything will be alright. Then they leave, and I am left on the floor, sobbing, while Kyle’s surviving family members stare at me.

And then I woke up.

I woke up with a pain in my chest, and tears in my eyes, as I rolled over in a panic to make sure that Kyle was still there. He was, but it had felt so real…