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Beth Ethridge [userpic]

Mom Update

February 27th, 2008 (09:07 pm)
nostalgic

current mood: nostalgic

I have gotten numerous inquiries about how the unexpected visit with Mom was handled on Monday. I finally have a little time to myself, so I want to take a few minutes to tell you about it.

Mom’s plane landed at LAX at 8:50am. I seriously had to get some things handled for the day before ditching work, so I got in at 7am. This is the earliest my badge will let me into the building, and then I left a little after 9 with the intentions of getting to the airport by our pre-arranged meeting time of 10am.

I had decided to tell my client the truth about how my Mom was unexpectedly in town, but I reconsidered that morning on the drive in and faked a migraine instead.

I appreciate all the advice about setting boundaries. For me, behaving in such a mean way, whether she deserved it or not, is beyond the boundaries I set for myself long ago in regards to how I feel people should be treated. Of course I was going to meet her. For me, it was never really an option to do otherwise.

After work and traffic, I arrived at the Delta terminal around 10:30am and inquired as to where she wanted to go and what she wanted to do. Without hesitation, she requested we head to our old house in Brea. I typed ‘1308 West Southridge Drive’ in my GPS navigator and off we went.

As an adult, I visited the house one other time about 4 years ago. On a visit to LA just before moving here, I ditched my departing flight back to Atlanta to rent a white Mustang convertible for a week instead. I extended my trip in Southern California for the purpose of taking a leisurely drive through my childhood.

Growing up for me consisted of two distinct chapters. My early childhood in Brea was as story book perfect as my adolescence in Atlanta was challenging and wrought with danger. In many ways, Mom and I share this story. The time she was living in Brea, happily married to my Dad, and raising her 2 little kids, was the happiest time in her life. It was perfect for me also, and we share many of the same memories of that time in our lives.

We began the day standing on Southridge Drive, a place we hadn’t been together in 20 years, remembering a time we both dearly cherish in our lives. I have only one period in my life that could possibly top those years, and she ranks it as her best time ever.

Suddenly the past 20 or so years were gone and she liked me again. She was no longer angry at me for no longer being 5 years old. I was the grown up me, standing in Brea, and somehow that made it all ok for her. She expressed to me how great it was to see me, she complimented my clothes and my new haircut, and she smiled all day long.

THIS IS IN STRARK CONTRAST TO OUR TYPICAL INTERACTION.

The last time I saw her more than a year ago, she constantly expressed her usual dissatisfaction with everything about me. Naturally, I had been in no hurry to share the same part of the country with her anytime in the next century. I set hard boundaries with her about a month into my freshmen year of college at 18 years old, and I haven’t seen much of her since.

And then Monday happened.

She liked me, she enjoyed my company, she complimented me, and she can’t wait to see me again.

Similar experiences with my Mom have happened 2 other times in my adult life, and neither one of them panned out to be anything. She ended up hating me just as much after whatever she was going through had resolved itself. Still, this girl with no grandparents, no aunts or uncles, no kids, no husband, and no Daddy would love to feel like she had family again. Yet at the same time I realize the definition of insanity is repeating the same action and expecting a different result.

Still… she is passing through LA again on her way home Friday night with a 3 hour layover at LAX, and I have accepted her invitation for dinner.

If my worst character trait is refusing to give up on the people in my life, I guess I can live with that. I am having dinner with my Mom Friday night, and I wish more than anything she truly liked me this much.

Beth Ethridge [userpic]

"That Woman", Formerly Known As My Mother

February 24th, 2008 (04:12 pm)
annoyed

current mood: annoyed

My family moved from Brea in Orange County to Atlanta about 20 years ago. I moved back to Southern California 4 years ago. My Mother hasn’t set foot on California soil in those 20 years since we moved, and has very recently become excited about the prospect of her first visit back.

The early part of last week, my Mother gave me a call to let me know she would be passing through LA this Monday, the 25th, due to a layover on a flight from Hartsfield Airport in Atlanta to Reno to join her boyfriend on a trip. The layover was going to be from around 1pm in the afternoon until about 5pm. She expressed her interest in my picking her up and having lunch during the time she is going to be here.

I am in the second month of a new dream job, and I felt ditching half a day of work to share a quick meal with my Mom was not only something I am in no way interested in doing, but a bad idea all around. I expressed to her that perhaps her scheduling a visit over a weekend was the better option. I also recognize that her desire is based in wanting to be in California again for the first time in 20 years, and not particularly in spending time with her daughter.

Thursday morning around 3:30am I receive a phone call from my Mother telling me she has been on the phone with a woman from Delta who has helped her arrange her layover tomorrow to be from 8:50 am to 5pm tomorrow evening and she is looking forward to the visit.

I am furious. It is difficult to decide which is more horrific, her blatant disregard and dismissal of my needs and wishes, or the impressive display of how unbelievably self-absorbed this woman is obviously capable of being. She has more than validated my dislike, mistrust, and disrespect for the woman she has unfortunately become.

I have found myself in the unfortunate position of having to screw over my client tomorrow (whom I adore) in support of this woman getting what she obviously feels is suppose to happen. I am going to injure the confidence and trust my client has been so readily been giving me because the world revolves around Donna (my Mother).

I did exactly what I should have. I stood up and I told her no. I told her I could not, and would not, give her half a day tomorrow, and suggested a better time. Now she has managed to cost me even more. Most of the time living 2000 miles from Atlanta is enough distance. If I had gone any further without the assistance from a ship, I would have fallen into the ocean.

In some ways I am sitting here in shock and disbelief that 2000 miles wasn’t enough to escape from her influence, but the majority of me isn’t surprised in the least. So tomorrow I am going to leave my new client hanging in a lurch while I show up to chauffer Donna around LA and OC to indulge her fantasy of seeing California again.

You may be thinking, “Hey – but you have a choice!” No, I really don’t. I have to give her this one, and it is pissing me off. What am I going to do? Leave her sitting at LAX for 9 hours? No – I really don’t have that choice.

Beth Ethridge [userpic]

Detail Oriented and Results Focused Professional...

November 6th, 2007 (02:25 pm)
excited

current mood: excited

The job hunt has been going painfully slowly.

Until right this second.

I applied online for a position at a company in Pasadena a couple hours ago. My resume has already made it into the hands of the COO. We are discussing salary expectations via email.

I have requested an interview and am awaiting a reply... on pins and needles.

I can't believe I told them I want *that* much money.





(Holing breath!)

Beth Ethridge [userpic]

Too Soon, Too Fast

September 18th, 2007 (02:36 am)
tired

current location: Home
current mood: tired



I am home alone after spending yet another day helping Lucky Dave prepare for his move to San Francisco. Today we got a storage unit near my house and began moving furniture and boxes out of Lucky's place.

Doc let us borrow his truck until tomorrow, so that means more of the same all day Tuesday. More packing, more moving, more hanging out, more talking, and one day closer to good-bye.

We have gotten so much done, and there is still much to do.

He will be gone in a week.

Maybe less.

God I'll miss him.

Beth Ethridge [userpic]

A Magical Encounter

September 12th, 2007 (03:47 pm)
calm

current mood: calm
current song: U2

Last night I enjoyed a long walk through Griffith Park way after dark and long after the park closed. During my time in the park I enjoyed some great company and friendship with WA!, good conversation, and we even got to dodge the police once.

I left Wa!’s place around midnight. While walking up the hill from her place to my vehicle, I found myself face to face in the dark with a coyote. We were perhaps one car length apart when we discovered each other’s presence. We both stopped and stared, neither of us moving.



After a full minute, the coyote moved first. It continued up the hill in the direction we were both originally traveling. I let it get a few paces ahead, and I, too, continued up the hill. The coyote, realizing I was following it, stopped and turned to face me just as it did when it first discovered I was there.

Again, we held eye contact and both of us were completely still. But this time I moved first. I took a couple slow, easy paces in our mutual direction. The coyote then joined me in our walk together up the hill just a couple yards apart from one another.

What a magnificent animal.

Beth Ethridge [userpic]

Restless

September 8th, 2007 (12:17 pm)

If I am out, I can't wait to get back home. If I am home, I feel a desperate need to get out and do something. I expect it is going to be like this for a while.

Beth Ethridge [userpic]

Good-Bye, Good Luck

September 7th, 2007 (01:43 pm)
sad

current mood: sad



Leading up to the burn, Lucky Dave had a series of successful job interviews with DHAP, a software development company. Their main office is in San Francisco, and they also have a satellite office here in Los Angeles in El Segundo. He was interviewing with the intentions of being placed in the office here in LA. The job is a wonderful opportunity for him.

Upon returning from the playa, Dave has been offered a position with the office in San Francisco. They will be sending him a written offer today that he intends on accepting. The position offers a spectacular salary, 3 weeks vacation, and all the usual benefits. He will be starting in 2-3 weeks.

I am both excited for him and sad that he will be leaving. I do not regret being supportive and encouraging throughout this process. I have known for quite some time that he is worth so much more than his current company acknowledges. I am thrilled for him that he will be going somewhere that he will be treated fairly and paid well.

The time LD and I have spent together has been priceless. I’ll never regret a thing and I wish him all the success in the world.

Beth Ethridge [userpic]

My Very Own Darwin Award

August 20th, 2007 (02:46 am)
amused

current location: home
current mood: amused
current song: Music Library is on Random...

Since I had nothing else to do just now, I decided to make the Sugar-Free Orange Jello I picked up a few days ago.



I wasn't paying enough attention, or whatever it is people do when they are being dumb, and I just spilled about 2 cups of boiling water down the back of my left hand.



It wasn't at a full hard boil, but rather it was where the smaller bubbles are rising to the surface of the water. (Thank god.)



I hope it doesn't blister.

Oh, well. At least I didn't burn my coochie this time.

[No photo available.]

Beth Ethridge [userpic]

Insomniac IMing

August 16th, 2007 (08:19 am)

What did insomniacs do before we could hang out together all morning IMing each other? It must have been a dark, cold, lonely world back then.

Thanks for the company.

-Miss Foxy Beth (AIM)

Beth Ethridge [userpic]

Steam Punk Ball, Kidney Infection, Emergent Care, Codeine, Denver, Home

August 16th, 2007 (05:10 am)
tired

current mood: tired

I have unfortunately been almost completely out of contact for a few weeks. It all started when I became sick leading up to the HipGenesis Steam Punk Ball July 21st.



The Wednesday or Thursday before the party I came down with a run of the mill UTI that I thought had gone away on its own after about 36 hours.



By Saturday night I felt well enough to attend the event. Lucky Dave and I had a smashing time!



The Sunday after, I was feeling completely exhausted after working the wrap out, and I went home and rested that evening and all day Monday. At the time, I wasn’t terribly alarmed by the fatigue. After all, I was just getting over a urinary tract infection and just had a long-ass weekend.



The Tuesday morning following that weekend, I woke up in more pain than I had ever previously experienced in my life.



Turns out it was my kidneys that were apparently radiating pain down both sides of my back. By Tuesday evening I was considering going to the emergency room.



Wednesday my condition continued to deteriorate leaving me unable to drive, so Lucky Dave took me to Verdugo Hills Emergent Care where I was diagnosed with a kidney infection in both kidneys. They immediately started me out with an antibiotic shot followed by a prescription for 14 days worth of Levaquin, which is some of the most bad-ass antibiotics on the market. All that was topped off with a metric fuckton of codeine to be taken every 4 hours for pain management.



They let me go home under the condition that if anything worsens I go straight to the ER, and also that I return to them to be checked out after 48 hours to see if I would require hospitalization by that time. Dave took me to his house and put me in his bed where I remained for 5 days.



He did manage to get me up for the 48 hour check-up, and they once again let me go home under the same conditions. By that time my left kidney was inflamed and still exceptionally painful, but the doctor was confident that the infection was under control.



Dave was an angel. He took care of me, rubbed my painful back, and filled my prescriptions. He encouraged me to eat and was patient when I refused, he calmed me when I was afraid because I had never been so sick or in so much pain, and was my best friend in the world throughout the entire dreadful ordeal.



He would even hang out with me and giggle with me, and sometimes at me, when the necessary pain management would result in my being so unbelievably high on codeine that I supplied endless entertainment for both of us.



Unfortunately this illness was leading up to a trip to Denver that Dave and I had planned and looked forward to for weeks. I didn’t decide until the morning of our flight that I would indeed make the trip to Colorado.



I was still recovering throughout the trip, but I enjoyed it as best I could. I have been back in LA for about a week now. I am feeling healthy, but still a bit worn out. And I am happy to be home.

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