Too Quiet?

My kids have been on vacation with their father in the northeast for a week and there’s one week left to go. I’ve had a hard time being without them. You’d think I’d be thrilled and make the most of my alone time and appreciate the quiet, right? Ugh. Kinda.

I have enjoyed spending the week in the Keys with Captain. Snorkeling, biking, walking, reading, etc. Alone time with him. We rarely get uninterrupted time so it’s been fantastic. But holy hell is it a quiet life without kids! Too quiet.

I have the summer off and spend loads of time with the kids. So having them gone for so long is rough. And not just because I enjoy them but also because I am neurotic and worry endlessly about their safety while they’re gone. I hate to even put it into words but I have nightmares about kidnappings, trafficking, drownings, car accidents, etc. I try to keep it under control and not be crazy… but man. I’m crazy.

I am not crazy enough to not recognize that I’m lucky they have a father that’s involved. His new girlfriend is with them and she’s been fantastic keeping watch and updating me about them. And at 6 and 9 years old, my kids are very fortunate to visit New England and family all along the northeast US. All good stuff.

So I’m just having a moment. One of those self pitying moments where I hate what comes with divorce with young kids.

On another note, I have realized that I need (A) some other teacher friends that are chilling this summer or (B) unemployed and adventurous wealthy friends, to hang with while Captain is out working. Day drinking is no fun alone. (I kid. Kinda. But, seriously, any volunteers?! 😜)

On a positive note, Captain and I will take a road trip tomorrow! We’re going to drive up to Charleston with several stops along the way. Lots of good eats! I’m currently working on my southern drawl. Saying “reckon” just doesn’t sound right yet with my Miami accent. I’ll get it!

xo

Athena

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Happy Divorce Anniversary to Me

I completely missed that a little over a year ago I officially divorced from Grayheart. So happy anniversary to me for that milestone!

It’s been over 3 and a half years since we separated. And as I reflect, I’ve noticed a few things.

  1. I no longer have the “need” or even desire to understand what went wrong. I no longer dissect it or try to make sense of it. He is a selfish man, I married the wrong person, and I now know better.
  2. I’ve learned from my mistakes. I think I was still a good wife but there are many things I could have done better. I am a better partner now. I appreciate things that truly matter. Little things count.
  3. Nothing lasts forever and there’s a sort of comfort you have the first time around that leaves you after a divorce. You no longer sit comfortably thinking you can’t be dethroned. Someone can vow to love you forever but they won’t stick around if you’re no longer lovable. Anyone can be replaced. Sounds negative but I feel like it’s just a more realistic point of view. And it pretty much applies to all in life.
  4. I’m fiercer and less willing to put up with anything I think is beneath me. I refuse to fall into old patterns in relationships.
  5. My bond with my kids is even stronger than I thought possible. I grateful for every moment with them since I now see them less than I would have if I’d had an intact household.
  6. It’s not fair but I have to put in more effort than my ex does when it comes to the kids. I do more and that’s just the way it is. It’s draining at times but whining that life isn’t fair just doesn’t help.
  7. The things that drove me crazy about my ex still annoy the hell out of me. But I don’t have to deal with him in my face every day. I’m free from his darkness.
  8. I no longer feel like I need to be connected somehow to Grayheart. We are not really friends. We are family, I guess? It’s reminiscent of an annoying cousin you care for and would be there for if they need you, but you don’t really talk to often. Every now and then he and I have a good quality conversation, especially about the kids. But I prefer not to be around him.
  9. His life has not drastically improved since we parted. He’s in debt. His weight has fluctuated. He’s changed jobs. He’s no longer friends with the “divorce is awesome” crew that encouraged the single life. He is no longer with Raggedy (she moved to Maryland). He has the kids to truly be proud of but that’s because I take care of everything. He’s screwed up everything around him.
  10. I have moments of frustration and sadness for my children but I haven’t cried about my divorce since the day it was officially confirmed. I think I poured out everything left at that moment. There is magic that happens within the 2 to 3 year mark. You really do heal. If you do it the right way. I faced it, received wonderful counseling, and managed to co-parent well through the worst of it. And somewhere along the way, I found a magnificent man as a partner.

So happy anniversary to me. I won’t “celebrate” it because I no longer define myself by it. It’s old news and I’m too busy moving straight ahead! I wish those of you going through a divorce a ton of strength and faith through the process. It does get better.

xo Athena

Disney with the Kids

I took my 6 yr old daughter and 3 yr old son this past weekend to Disney World. By myself! 

  

And I survived! 

  
A little crazier but I came back in one piece!

  
The parks were busy but we maneuvered well. This was my first trip with the kids to Disney without my ex. They missed him but we were plenty busy with everything around us.

  

We kept Grayheart updated with pics throughout the weekend but it did feel a little strange to not have him there to participate in such a big adventure. 

    
One of many firsts I’m knocking out of the way. 🙂  

  
Here’s to many more new adventures with my rugrats as a single mom!

Cheers!

XO

My mantra throughout the weekend:  I got this!

Last Week in Rewind – St. Paddy’s, Pests, Wicked & Wine

Last week was full of fun activities even though it started with a curveball!

Monday – Lice struck again. FML.  My best friend called me that she found it on her daughter and that I should check She-ra.  Of course, I found some on her.  I am SO over these little fuckers.  I took her straight to a professional lice clinic and spent the $150 to get it treated and guaranteed. Ain’t nobody got time for that.  So, by the end of the day, we were officially lice free in my house.  Which then led me to indulge in some serious retail therapy.  New shoes and clothes were what I needed to feel better. 😉

Tuesday – St Patrick’s Day!  I joined Jazz and my cousins for a night of green filled fun!  We went out to a bar that plays music and pretty much danced and drank the whole night.  Which was then followed by our weekly late night Dr. Phil session.  Jazz is recovering from a bad breakup last year with a long term boyfriend.  We tend to go grab something to eat after our nights out which started turning into lengthy therapy chats.  This one was no different but you can really sense our progress!

Wednesday – I’d found a great deal through Living Social for discounted tickets to see Wicked, which I’d been dying to see.  So my mother, aunt, cousin and I all went to see it.  

The show was playing at the Adrienne Arsht Center in Downtown Miami.  It’s a beautiful theater and the energy is just so great there!

 

The show was amazing!  We had a phenomenal time!  I’m sure many of you have seen it before but I was so moved by the performances and songs.  I recommend seeing it if you have not, especially if you are a fan of The Wizard of Oz.

Friday – Date night with Captain consisted of a lovely evening at Schnebly’s Winery.  We tried the beer and wine tastings and then had a delicious dinner outdoors while watching folks sing karaoke. 

Just a side note about this place, they are a winery and brewery but the unique thing is they do not use grapes for their wine.  They use all sorts of local fruit such as avocado, mango, lychee, etc.  I didn’t particularly care for their beer or wine but the staff was very friendly and well informed on their stuff.  And the food was excellent. 

  

It was a wonderfully romantic evening. We had great conversation and it was nice to be in a relaxing atmosphere just enjoying each other.  I really am smitten. 

Sometimes I can’t believe how different my life has become.  Seven months ago I thought my life had fallen apart.  I knew that everything would be okay but it was hard to picture happy moments.  I still struggle a bit with waiting for the bubble to burst.  As if good things eventually go bad…but I’m working on keeping those negative thoughts at bay.  I’m doing my best to live in the moment.

So although I started off the week with pesky invaders, I had a fabulous week! 

This week’s mantra:  Stop telling yourself that it’s all too good to be true!

Last Week in Rewind – Getting Funky, Dating & Full Moon Parties

I’m a bit behind blogging lately.  I think working, kids, illnesses, trying to maintain a social life and actually dating is starting to catch up to me!  Once I put the kids to bed, I’m so tired I can’t even keep my eyes open to be able to jump on a computer.

Here’s my attempt at catching you all up on the highlights of last week.  It was a fun week. 🙂

Wednesday Captain asked me out to dinner and drove his little cute bum up to see me.  I was a little bit worried that maybe the second date wouldn’t go quite as perfectly as the first one.

Well, no sophomore slumps here!  First thing he said when he picked me up was “Damn, I forgot just how beautiful you were.”  (Pick me up off the floor, y’all.)   That started it all off right!  We had drinks at a bar and then dinner at a gastropub by the name of Barley & Swine.  Great drinks + great food + great conversation + sexy man + fabulous goodbye makeout session = Perfect night for me.  I can’t say enough good things at this point.  I’m enjoying this early dating phase where everything is perfect!

Thursday Grayheart was on travel last weekend for work so my typical “Friday Night Fun” turned into “Thursday Night Fun!”  (Side note… Can’t you kinda already see why my marriage was so challenging with his travel?)

My girlfriend, Jazz, and I decided to spend our night of fun and debauchery at a club in Little Havana (in Miami) known as “Hoy Como Ayer.”  They had a live band called “Spam All Stars” that plays a mean Afro-Cuban/Latin funk infused with hip hop and salsa.  Totally awesome!  It was my first time seeing them and they rock!  We danced and had a blast.

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Saturday – I had my THIRD date with Captain.  This time I went to the Keys to visit him.  He’d been wanting to take me to something called a “Full Moon Party” that occurs once a month.  Luck had it that it fell this particular weekend. He had a most romantic evening planned for us…

A few bottles of Moët & Chandon and fruit were waiting for me when I arrived.  We drank our bubbly while sitting on his deck overlooking the water.  He then took us to our dinner reservation at a fabulous restaurant where we shared food and great stories.  The next stop was the Full Moon Party on the beach.  VIP treatment, fireworks, performers, drinks, dancing… it was SO much fun!  I, also, met all his best friends.  We all got along really well and you can rest assured that I wiggled my bottom to show off that I was an old pro on the dance floor.

So, how did we end the night, you ask?  More champagne and a most memorable evening at his house.  Screw my year of celibacy.  OH. MY. GAWD.  HOW. DID. I. GET. SO. LUCKY?

https://i1.wp.com/www.moradabay.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/full-moon-gallery.jpg

I’m still in a haze over last week.   It was just ah-mazing.  Seriously.  Pinch me, I’m dreaming.

Last Week’s Mantra:  I am on such a high right now.  ENJOY THE NOW!!!

I got Catfished!

Online dating should be pretty easy and straightforward, right?  It’s become so popular that there’s a lot of “normal” people on there… or so I thought!

I was messaged by this incredibly handsome and fit guy named Mike.  I nicknamed him “Magic Mike” as you can see why.

Yummy!  Nice smile, totally buff, seems nice…so he asks me for my phone number… says he’s moving from NY to Miami and has been trying to get to know people before his move.  I’m like “YESSSSS! How the hell did I get so lucky?!  Too good to be true!”  (Yep, that’s right, little voice of reason.)  

So after a day or two of texting, which involved heavy flirting and the delicious sense that I was gonna get me some of those rippling abs in the very near future – I started feeling that something was “off.”  (Grrr!)

First, his grammar was awful. (I associated this with the lack of brains due to his beauty.  You cannot be gifted on both sides!)  Then, while he claimed was all open to talking on the phone or FaceTiming, he would disappear or give an excuse when I asked to do so. And, finally, he was vague when answering questions on his plans for Miami upon arrival.  Seemed strange that someone making such a move would be so disorganized about the whole thing.

We’d chat about taking pictures/selfies and he sent me this picture.

He said he was working out one evening and so he sent this picture.  (Shit!  His abs have abs!)


While I planned my future escapades with this fine specimen, I was doing my internet research. I checked online for the logo of the gym he was at. Couldn’t find anything in New York.  I searched his phone number. Nada.  I started to do the reverse image search but couldn’t get it to work on my cell phone.  So after boasting about Magic Mike’s beauty to my inner circle of family and friends… my brother calls me laughing hysterically!  His boyfriend actually follows this guy on Instagram! Yep!  Magic Mike is actually Mike Thurston, fitness trainer/Insta model in LONDON!  (Check him out on FB: https://www.facebook.com/mikethurstonofficial or Instagram: http://instagram.com/mikethurston)

I was communicating with an imposter that was using this man’s images!  Thank goodness luck was on my side and my brother in law knew who this guy was!  Now it was time for me to flip the script on the Catfisher!  Catfishee became the catfisher!

What did I do?  Over the next few days I kept flirting with him and started getting really really needy.  Like, weird needy.  Then I started asking him for money.  Saying I was a single mom that needed the help.  He was freaking out!  Finally, I told him that I needed the money for my “final surgery” because I was in the midst of transitioning from a man to a woman.

(*Disclaimer: I have no problems with transgendered community but I knew it’d freak him out.)

I told him that the pics I posted from Match were of a friend of mine and that I hoped he’d forgive me for the lie.  He responded with “Ahhh! I am NOT interested, bye.  Thanks for posting fake pictures of yourself.”  Dude had the nerve to get pissy for faking him out! LOL!  My final message to him (before I finally blocked him) was a screen shot of Mike Thurston’s facebook page.  I told him that if I was ever in London, I’d be sure to look him up!  (I wanted him to know I was on to his game.)

With a bit more research, we traced the phone number to some loser that lives in Kissimmee, FL with a last name of Patel.  Very far off from Mr. Thurston.  There’s an address associated with this guy so I’m going to send him a very special gift…Glitter!

For those of you that haven’t seen “Ship Your Enemies Glitter“, check it out!  It’s soooo worth the $10! 

Moral of the story?  Trust your gut instinct.  If it’s too good to be true, it usually is!  And research the heck out of anyone you meet (online or in person).  And if you get catfished, don’t be a victim!  Fire back anyway you can!  I ended up having such a laugh with this experience!

And at least Mike Thurston has a new follower on social media!  Maybe a few after this post! 😉