Jet To No Where

Help me find out if I am on a Jet To No where…or just on stand by.

Archive for the month “April, 2009”

The Beginning of The End…Part 2:

Has anyone every seen the movie “Blast from the Past”? Brendan Fraser and Alicia Silverstone?…..it’s a cute movie about a 30 year old guy that lives in a bomb shelter since birth and eventually comes up for supplies for his family. Long story short…he falls in love with the girl and she meets the parents. The guy (“Adam”, Brendon Frasier) had this line in the movie that I always remembered. It was something like this…”The parents take care of the children, then in turn, the children take care of the parents…that’s just how it’s done”. Something to that effect….but it’s true. That IS how it should be. Anyone who was raised properly with love and everything they ever needed or wanted should, in turn, take care of the people who may have given up so much to do that for them. The sacrifices that parents make are not measurable. Yes, we choose to become parents, but the act of giving up so much so that another human being you are responsible for can eventually live out their dreams is nothing short of miraculous.

That is what my grandmother and grandfather did for my father and uncle. They would have never become a pilot and lawyer without the help of their parents, my grandparents. When my parents divorced and we lived with my father, my grandmother stepped right in. He would never be where he is today without the sacrifices she made for my sisters and I. Who wants to become a parent again at the age of sixty? My grandfather was long gone…since 1979, the year my youngest sister was born and Gram gave up whatever she may have had planned in the future in order to take care of us.

In my last blog concerning this touchy subject, I stated that my father and uncle said Gram would never, ever go in a “home”. They did lie. My sister and I both offered to help take care of Gram after she fell. After all, she did raise us, I promised her I would always be there to take care of her and we wanted to. All the reassurances that she is well taken care of and how no one would be able to care for her like she is being cared for now and how my father always picks her up every weekend and they have dinner at his house with her…..that she is doing great….likes it at “the home”….I hear it every time (and it’s not that often I speak to my father any more) he calls or I call him. I have never spoke to my uncle about it. Quite frankly, he is not very personable and probably doesn’t want to talk to me either. My father can talk all he wants about how better off Gram is at her new “home”. The bottom line is this:

He isn’t trying to convince me, my sisters, my grandmother, his friends….no one….he is trying to convince himself.  He, my uncle and their wives were not willing to give up their lifestyles to accommodate the woman who was responsible for those lavish lifestyles. She molded them into the successes they are today and this is how they repay her. I don’t care if my father never speaks to me for the rest of my life….I will still take care of him if he needs to be later in his life. I would never do that to someone who had sacrificed so much for me.

Just like no one, except Gram, can forgive me for the credit card fiasco….I will never forgive my father and uncle for what they have done to their own mother. It’s disgraceful.

Sometimes we have to give up our dreams to do what is right.

And Karma’s a bitch….

TO BE CONTINUED…..

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Quote of The Day:

Don’t look where you fall, but where you slipped.  ~African Proverb

 

No person is your friend who demands your silence, or denies your right to grow.
~Alice Walker

The Beginning of the End…..

 

Preface: I thought long and hard on whether or not to start writing about this experience in my life. It has been a painful, humiliating and humbling journey. I had a conversation last night with someone. It solidified what I have been thinking all along.

I have nothing left to lose.

 

I have never been good with money. I have never been able to balance a check book. I have bounced countless checks and have received an exorbitant amount of fees throughout my lifetime. I have ruined my credit twice in my life. I am incapable of handling credit cards. I have been under the delusion that I could always afford anything I wanted. I was always wrong. I have been the true cliche of “champagne taste on a beer pocketbook”. I have been doing this since I was 18 years old. It has taken me close to 20 years to realize that I have a serious spending problem….and only now I have been learning how to control it.

I learned the hard way. I learned in the worst possible way imaginable. I lost my family.

I am married with 2 boys. We lived in Pennsylvania from 2001-2008, right next door to my grandmother. My father’s mother raised my 2 sisters and myself while he had custody after the divorce. He was just starting his career with Continental Airlines and Gram was essentially our “mother”. My husband and I moved to PA at just the right time, as Gram was at the point where she could no longer drive and needed help with things. My husband and I did everything we could from going grocery shopping to taking her to doctors appointments. My son went over to visit her everyday. We helped her because we wanted to. I remember saying to her when I was in high school that she took care of me as I grew up and that I would always take care of her. I didn’t think much of it at that time, but who would have thought that it would come to pass so many years later.

During these years I was cleaning up our credit. Mine was from way before I met my husband and my husband mainly had lots of medical bills. After a few years we were able to get some small limit credit cards. But I wanted a bigger one. I wanted the freedom and status that came with an American Express or Chase Visa. I wanted to feel important. I know it sounds stupid, but we had so many hard times (that’s for another blog) over the years that I wanted to feel like a normal person. Someone who could go out and buy clothes for the kids or take a vacation without worrying about a budget.

I applied for larger, more prestigous cards, but was declined. Then I decided to do something that I never should have. I asked Gram to get a credit card with me as a co-signer or authorized user. She said yes, of course. I knew she would and I should never have asked, but one turned into two and then three. Gram was the primary and I was an authorized user. I wasn’t accepted as a co-applicant. Everything was fine for over a year or so. I was careful, paid on time and even over the minimum payment. Then it all turned to shit.

My husband and I were adopting a baby through a family member. They needed help with their other 3 kids, so we decided to help take care of them for a few months. We also had custody of our niece, who was 15 at the time. So, with my son, the 3 boys, my niece and then the new baby, we had six kids. I had applied for help from the state because we were taking care of these children, but unbelievably….we didn’t qualify for anything. We were over the income limit. I couldn’t understand how, but we were. So, what’s the first thing that goes…..the credit cards.

I didn’t mean for it to happen I didn’t plan it. I didn’t take care of my grandmother for seven years just to get some credit cards in the end. I fucked up. They were maxed out and I couldn’t pay them. I told Gram that she had to call the companies in order for me to be able to speak to them to try and fix it. She was the primary…they wouldn’t say anything to me without her say so. I had taken the optional protection plan, but because I was already behind (Note To Self: always read the fine print) it was void.  Gram asked if I was taking care of it and I told her I was doing my best. I told her I was sorry….that I never meant for this to happen. I tried and failed.

During all this time, my family wasn’t really even speaking to me because of the decision we made to take in all the kids. You see, all the kids were from my husband’s side of the family. My side doesn’t see family like that. They were not my true family. Not my problem….let them go to foster care….just not my problem to deal with. My friends were more than supportive. I even had strangers telling me what a great thing we were doing when I was out with all the kids. Once I would have a conversation with someone and the inevitable question of “are these all your kids?” came up…I would breifly explain and people were dumbfounded that my husband and I would do such a thing. That we were willing to help all these kids was incredible to people. I didn’t see it as some saint like activity…just helping family.

After a few months, the three boys went back to their parents. Things were quiet around my house, but still, no one from my family was in touch with me. I used to talk to my father every day on the phone. That had stopped a few months back, but he had called me one day and said, “well, I guess you heard about Gram.”  Ummm, no I didn’t hear anything about Gram. Apparently, she had fallen that morning and broke her hip and was lying on the floor for two hours before my upstairs neighbor (my father’s wife’s sister….long story….another blog) went over and found her. No one called me. She had been at the hospital all day. The woman who lived just up one flight of stairs from me didn’t even have the courtesy to call me. She called my father’s wife, as he happened to be in Mexico for God knows what. Neither one of my sisters called me. Not my  aunt and uncle, cousins….no one. My husband and I took care of this woman for over seven years and no one told us. I was sick that day, so I didn’t call her. I always called her every morning, but because I was sick, I didn’t. I will never get over that guilt. But I will also never understand the reasoning why no one called me or my husband.

My father and uncle (my Godfather; my father’s brother) had found out about the credit card situation. Gram had always told me to make sure I paid them because she didn’t want to hear anything from my father or uncle about it, as they took care of her finances. I said before, I fucked up. I had talked to Gram…apologized…said I would do what I could to fix it. I couldn’t.  Not only were my father and uncle mad, but everyone in my family…sisters, brother-in-laws, cousins….everyone. They all wanted an apology for what I did to Gram. I didn’t understand it. Eventually it came out that they all thought that I took out all these credit cards without Gram knowing. That I did it behind her back. No matter what I said, I was screamed at and never could explain anything to anyone. Gram told my father and uncle she only knew about one card. I know why she did that….I know she had already been reamed out for doing it in the first place, but if she were to admit to all of it, they would have treated her like they always have….like a child. Yes, I made a huge mistake and I know I should have never thought to ask her….I couldn’t handle it, but I was convinced I could. I don’t blame her for telling them what she did. I know she did it for legitimate reasons. It didn’t matter how many credit cards there were….I was completely shut out from Gram’s life.

She spent the next few weeks in the hospital and then was transfered to a nursing facility for rehabilitation. This was supposed to be temporary. My father and uncle said they would never, ever put Gram into a home…….

They lied.

TO BE CONTINUED….

Quote of The Day:

“Family, religion, friends.. these are the three demons you must slay if you wish to succeed in business.”
Monty Burns

Demons….
It is the saddest day of one’s life when one decides to severe ties with family……
But some things will never change and you have to change in order to move forward.

Who’s Afraid of Virginia……..Pig?!?

So, now we have the Swine Flu. Not the Avian Flu…..the Swine Flu. Something not seen in almost 30 years, so some people will not be capable of fighting it off. May it be a chronic illness, the very young or the elderly. So far, we have been lucky and no one has died here in the US. But is that about to change? Has the media scared us to the point of no return?

Well, they have certainly got to my husband. Yesterday he said to me this: “I think we should home school Jakob (he’s 8).” I said, “What’s this “we”? Do you have a fucking mouse in your pocket because I don’t see you staying home from work and home schooling anyone?”

Should I be scared? Jakob is now….thanks to his dad. He overheard it all and is stating the Mexico statistics and US ones as well. He said he doesn’t want to get sick and die. I assured him that he will be fine…that no one here has died….that Mexico doesn’t have the medical care and hospitals we have and we will be OK. If I get the Swine Flu, I’m dead. I don’t have the immune system because of my heart disease. Should I, living in Florida with a large population of Mexican people who do travel back and forth….should I be scared? Do I wait until there is a case here to keep Jake home? Once it starts in the school system…forget it…it’s going to be nuts and people will become unreasonable.

My girlfriend in St. Pete, Florida told me that two of her kids are sick with flu-like symptoms. I just now heard on the news that the median age of people that are infected is 16 years old. The symptoms are just the same as any other flu…so what now?

Now, Dr. Sanjay Gupta has a model from a few years ago showing how it may be expected to spread….should that scare me?…..because it does. Tami flu is supposed to halt it significantly, but how are you supposed to halt something that you already have?  He is in Mexico City…which is crazy to me even if it is his job….dictating all the possible treatments and outcomes.

My point is this: Is the media helping or hurting us? We need to know …yes…..but do we need to be told every tiny possible detail? Is this a crisis yet? The government had the Avian flu scare in 2006, but it never amounted to much.

Dr. Louis Sullivan, who used to work for the CDC, says we are moderatly prepared for this strain, but it’s not “excellent”.  On Twitter….Dr. Drew, Anderson Cooper…even Perez Hilton are talking about the Swine flu.  It’s everywhere in every medium.

So how do we decide on when to really panic?

http://www.cdc.gov/swineflu/

http://www.cnn.com/2009/HEALTH/04/24/swine.flu/index.html

Quote of the Day:

“Relevance is all about adapting, about reinventing ourselves, the brands and the companies we work with. You know who’s good at that?”

U2

 

My Podcasts are coming soon!!!!

Quote of The Day:

It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.

 Mahatma Gandhi

http://thinkexist.com/quotations/health/

Great link for awesome quotes!

Married…..But Looking……..

This was an article that I wrote for a local magazine. It was not published, but the two week experiment was quite eye opening…..
Please click on each image, as it was the only way to incorporate the article. Thanks!
Married....Page 1

Married....Page 1

Married....Page 2

Married....Page 2

Quote of the Day……

    I Like this quote I dislike this quoteOur deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us most. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and famous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that people won’t feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in all of us. And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

Used by Nelson Mandela in his 1994 inaugural speech
 CUJules

 Maryanne Williamson

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