Lots of Catching Up to do…….Sort Of

Okay…..lots of ground to cover and yet I don’t have much time before my next Vicodin kicks in…….well, actually it is already kicking in, so this will not be the post I had hoped it to be!

Thanksgiving was great!  I went to Edgar’s house and he, the kids, Anita and Luciano, and my Dad and Ellie celebrated together.  Here is a pic of Dad and Ellie, specifically taken for my Aunt Kay:


My shoulder is doing pretty good.  I did way too much yesterday and thought it’d be good to lay off the pain meds – the two are a bad combination.  I ended up being in the worst pain I have felt since the surgery and it took quite some time for it to be controlled.  It was not pleasant and I was, unfortunately, cranky!  Rita, David and I went into West Hollywood yesterday and had fun, but I ended the night early with my pain (well, I think it was after midnight).  Fortunately I made it thru the cranky stage and pain – as did Rita, who got the brunt of my crankiness!

Today I have done a bit better – have taken it easier, worked on school, and watched Rita get all my stuff organized in her place.  What?  Does that make sense?  Oh yeah, think I missed a big part of my weekend….

Let’s see – my best friend had one condition to our friendship.  Unfortunately, that one thing became an issue and we are now no longer friends.  It became more complicated by the fact that I was living in her home, which she opened up to me very generously last year when my own home was vacated (that is another long and dramatic story, but old news by now).  Anyway, so I had planned to move temporarily into Edgar’s place, but it’s pretty full there with the kids and his parents.  He was willing and offered to house me anyway, but Rita was nice enough to allow me to move into her place until I had time to get an apartment or whatever.  So on Friday, Rita, Kenny, Edgar and I (well, having just had surgery, didn’t do very much) moved the bulk of my stuff to storage and the rest (including my beloved bike) is here at Rita’s.  So today Rita moved a dresser into her office and cleaned out a closet there for my stuff.  I have to say, she’s been really amazing through this transition and I am very thankful for her!  And Edgar and Kenny were just as amazing organizing my storage and working their butts off with my stuff!

And how has my Gracie done with the transition?  Well, she loves it here!  Nike, Rita’s rotweiller, is the best big brother she could ever ask for!  But, truth be told, Gracie is the boss in the relationship!  Here they are relaxing together:


On Saturday, we took both dogs to the vet; Nike for a check up and Gracie to get her left eye checked out because it has been running.  Both also had “spa treatments”!  They came home healthy, clean, and happy!

And that, my friends, is all that I can write now because I am sleepy!  Working tomorrow will be interesting as I take multiple naps a day!  Plus, being out here in the valley, I am not looking forward to the commute!

I will write more later!

Quick Update

I am not perfect.  I have made mistakes, some bigger than others.  Some caused great pain and I will not shy away from that fact.  But the truth of the matter is I’ve been hurt too and you – whether or not you feel guilt or shame – have made mistakes too.  Yo have hurt me, my children, and yet feel innocent about it and that is fine.  Your mistakes do not justify my most recent wrongdoings, and I am sorry for some of the decisions I’ve made, but they also do not erase shortcomings of those around me, even yours.

I wish you well and truly hope you don’t find yourself alone and unhappy.  And, as a side note, your timing is amazingly horrible.  And I am sure that comment will solidify in your mind what you have secretly felt about me from May to this day – I am a horrible person.  Glad that I could fulfill that assessment of me so thoroughly.

(and no, this post is not to Deana)

For everyone else, I’m recovering and am not in much pain from my surgery.  I hope to be able to write more soon – my surgery, my thanksgiving, and more.  As for now, Vicodin is my new best friend.

What is Integrity?

Merriem-Webster’s main definition is “firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values”.   I think most of us want to stick to having integrity in our lives, and I realize we all (including me) fall short sometimes.  I mean, when a telemarketer calls your house and asks for you and you say “they’re not home”, does that have integrity?  I could argue the fact that telemarketers in general are not moral, so it’s okay that I lied……but anyway, you get my point?

But today I am struggling with integrity that is a little more massive than dealing with telemarketers.  I have been lied to and the lie has huge consequences to several people.  It has hearts and futures in their clutches.  And as the pain of this whole situation washed over me and I was still in the white wash – tumbling and really not sure which was was up or down – I receive a call to try to explain the situation.  First of all, I received acknowledgement of the lie(s) involved.  Then I heard justifications to why the lie happened in the first place – and, really, there are some compelling issues here and I don’t want to suggest that this has been an easy situation for this person.  However, I sat listening to them and thought to myself, “Could I do the same thing, with these circumstances, and still look myself in the mirror?”

That is where I am now.  I want to be forgiving yet there is real pain related to the apparent lack of integrity from another.  I know I am not perfect, I know I have done stupid and hurtful things many times in my past (and, most likely, in my future), yet I also am overwhelmed with offending pain and hurt that is as real as the sun in the sky.  I can completely admit I do not trust this person at all, and even question the “truth” they explained to me.  There is a big part of me that takes their explanations, their desire to “not hurt me in the future” and scream – you are a piece of [enter something mean here]!  And there’s another part that feels sorry for this mixed up and hurting soul that is so lost that they make the most horrible, painful decisions for themselves and everyone around them.

So I write here instead of coming to a decision about the future.  Can we remain friends?  Is it worth it?  Can my heart handle it?  Can I go forward always (probably) wondering if they are lying to me, if they are playing with me?  If they will find another circumstance to justify throwing me back into the white wash.  I know they have pain now too, that they regret this whole thing, that they are sorry……but that doesn’t help me much right now.  And so I write and ponder……..

Josh and Mom Day

After many delays and false starts, Josh and I are finally having our special time together!  I am very thankful because, with my upcoming surgery, I didn’t want to delay it further and also did not want him to be tied down with a gimpy mom!

So, you’re probably why I am writing on this blog if we’re having our time together, right?  Well, I DO have a class that I need to meet with online at 11 am, and just finished some homework.  He is watching a moving and we are chilling until after my class.

But that doesn’t mean we haven’t had a blast so far!  Last night we went for Hibachi and had a yummy dinner, volcano and all, as well as some random drumming with our chopsticks.  We finished the night singing karaoke till I lost my voice.  Today, we did a bit of that, played with Gracie, and just were silly together.  In fact, while giving Gracie Milk-Bones, he asked if he could taste one.  He did and the kid can ACT!  He so convinced me it was the best thing ever, so much so that I took a bite!  He immediately ran to the trash to spit it out while I agonized over the horrible taste in my mouth!  Let me tell you, I am NOT that gullible, but he was very convincing!

Okay, thanks for letting me fill the gap before my class!  I will write more later with other things Josh has done to his poor old mom!  Remind me to tell you about the Sumo Wrestler!

Update on my Shoulder & Fishing Pics

Okay, today I went to my Orthopedic Surgeon……he is cool.  Kiarash “Kevin” Khajavi.  He is the one that had me have the tests that hurt so freakin bad but that showed what the deal is with my shoulder.  Last time we met, he said that I have two issues – strained ligament from my collar bone to my shoulder, and arthritis in the same place.  He suggested I wait a few weeks, take Ibuprofen in the am and pm, and hope the pain subsided.

Well, there wasn’t a marked change in the pain area and, quite frankly, this shoulder has really crimped my style!  So I was ready for a battle!  However, when I explained my position today, he gave me two options – cortisone shot or surgery.  I asked a few questions and pretty much said “I want this to be done” and he said surgery was the way to go.  He also mentioned I have bone spurs there or something, so that would be taken care of, too.  So I am having outpatient arthroscopic surgery on 11/25, where he will shave my bone a bit, clean up any other damage, and then I will be recovering.  I will only miss 2 or 3 days of work and the overall recovery time will be about 6 weeks.  I will need physical therapy to make sure it doesn’t lock up and HOPEFULLY I will be back to normal….well, as normal as I am!  I will let you know how it goes!  I thank God that my new employer was understanding about this whole thing and that it’s slow at work right now!

Here are some pics from the fishing trip we took this weekend!

Here is how the sky looked as we left the bay….


Here is Edgar and Kenny and Kenny relaxing:

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Here is my Joshster:

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Me and my friend Rita (ignore the beer in my hand……):


Here are some of our poor fish and the Newport Bay:

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The sunset:


It was fun even though there was drama with the fires……..

Yeah, What He Said….

Many long-time readers of this blog know I love John Shore. I even have a link to his blog, for Pete Sake! And now that I am a FAN of his on Facebook, it’s that much easier to get the latest and greatest posts the man writes.

So, I’d LOVE for you to read it here, and let me know your thoughts regarding the issues he raises. Many of the questions he poses are the same ones I’ve asked recently – so your heartfelt responses are appreciated! And hey, you might as well answer him, too!

A Crazy Weekend! (UPDATED)

Okay, the weekend started out with a bang – my friend Rita and I went to see Tyrone Wells at the Troubadore in West Hollywood. In case you don’t know Tyrone Wells, you should check him out! He used to lead worship at University Praise and is an amazing singer/songwriter! Check out his site here.

So the concert was GREAT and I decided to spend the night at Rita’s since she lives closer to West Hollywood than I do. When I woke up in the morning, the skies were already filled with smoke from the Sylmar fire. I took off early to get out before it got ugly, plus had plans to go sports fishing in the ocean with my boys! So we headed towards Orange County, grateful to not have to deal with the fires for the day.

However, driving in we soon saw fires off the 91 freeway. When I drove to Edgar’s house, it didn’t seem too close and we all headed towards Newport Beach (including Edgar and his neighbor, Andy and Andy’s daughters – who are good friends with my sons). We headed to the beach, glad to get away from the smoke and blah related to the fires near Orange County. We got settled on the boat, started heading out to sea, and then we saw the smoke spreading before our very eyes off the coast. It soon appeared to be a bigger fire than we anticipated.

Soon Andy, who is a Placentia Police Officer, began receiving calls. They were doing voluntary evacuations in Edgar’s neighborhood and the police department was making sure Andy’s motorcycle and weapons were safe. As we were in the middle of the ocean, he could not access either. But this also raised other flags – were Edgar’s parents safe? Gracie was with them, too! What the heck was going on!

Let me tell you, it was a LONG fishing trip and feeling helpless! Poor Edgar was on the phone so much and I was trying to make things “calm” for the boys and for Andy’s kids. I think we made that happen, but it was another thing all together dealing with the fires that were awaiting us!

The Brea fires were very close to my house, the Anaheim Hills and Yorba Linda fires were very close to Edgar’s house. I soon realized I could get to mine without tons of problems, but Edgar’s area was closed to anyone. I took the boys home and Edgar, with Andy, tried to see if they could get in using Andy’s police position.

Bottom line – it was CRAZY and I don’t really want to relive it here…..but basically everyone is okay and no property was lost.  It was tough going, the smoke SUCKS, and it was tense for some time.  Things are settling down although it’s STILL very smokey here (as of Monday night).  The boys’ school was closed today so it was weird……

So anyway, we are safe and sound.

Although I LOVE my new job, why I want to sometimes scream!

Background: Received a statement from a vendor that had a zero current bill and a past due amount. As I had been instructed, I gave the bill to the person training me. She gave it back with a note saying: “call them we don’t get invoice” (copied word for word)

I went to the vendor’s site to get online statements and realized this issue had been going on for two months. As the original bill was for a lease, I sent an email to the person training me just to keep her informed and to get her feedback. I don’t know, thought maybe she had disputed it or something……here is how it went down:

The past due amount for this vendor actually goes back two months. We were billed $xx.xx in September for Meter Rental to cover 9/16-12/15, plus tax. The balance carried over in October and included late fees. Now it’s back in November plus late fees. I have the print outs for you to review and I confirmed nothing has been entered or paid in Solomon.
Her reply:
Meter Rental is bill  by QTL.  We don’t get last invoice for this bill, we call vendor waste for late fees charge.
What is your question and need to review for?
My reply:
I was letting you know what I found and usually you ask to see so I was just trying to accommodate what I expected you’d ask for.  Plus, this happened before I started here so thought you might have something to input.  However, I will be more than happy to handle this.
(Note to readers – at this point she and I had a face-to-face about the whole situation and I thought we were clear about the apparent miscommunication going on.  I thought everything was cool and went on with my work all happy and stuff.  You should also know that any email to ME is blind copied automatically to the owners of the company)
Her reply:

Bring up example for “this happened before you started here”.  You turn to me the invoice with note late charge?  I return with call vendor we don’t get the last invoice and try to get credit for late charge.  What is wrong???? Gina.
My reply (as I stared at her back as she sits 5 feet from me):
I apologize that we seem to be miscommunication, or at least I was not communicating effectively to you.  I thought we just cleared this up in our discussion and not sure we needed this email, but I do appreciate that you sent it anyway so that I don’t go on with my day thinking this interaction was resolved when it really wasn’t.
I was basically trying to honor you, give you an opportunity to give me your feedback because, in other cases where I have not consulted you, I seem to have offended you.  I absolutely do NOT want to offend you, and since I didn’t have the benefit of any special handling you may have done with the lease 9/3 (original bill date), I was trying to explain in my last email that I was giving you the opportunity to give me feedback on it.  That is what I meant about “this happened before I started here”.  However, in your first email you made it clear that it was not the case.  Further, you asked why I asked you so I was just trying to explain to you why I did what I did.
I am afraid that, had I NOT asked for your feedback, I would have offended you as I have seemed to do in the past as you have so much information that I lack.  I hope I have not instead offended you by asking and also answering your question.  However, I will absolutely handle this, I know now based on the conversation you and I just had that we never received the bill, and I will be more than happy to call and request the late fees be waived.
If there is anything I have misspoken or misunderstand, please let me know.
So maybe I shouldn’t have sent the email, because this was her reply today:
Hope we are here to work and save time to work to keep up the Company good and doing well.  My style is like to work and showing to work more than spend time to back and forth e-mail every little thing or something – bottom line is no point, wastes time.

I’m a part in this company, long or short it is.  I want to training you go to right way, no mistake, save…as far as I know.
Just so you know, she’s sitting 5 feet from me right now and – true to every other day – won’t really talk to me or train me until about 5:17 tonight.  Sigh.