Peacemonger Mom

My son just enlisted in the military. I'm a peace activist. Why couldn't he have rebelled in some other way, like being republican?

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Learning lessons the hard way

When I was a kid, my mother had a table with leaves that folded down by way of a hinge - a hinge which was easily accessible to small hands beneath the table. I had a habit of playing with the hinge, to Mom's dismay and constant reminder that if I didn't stop, I was liable to flip my food directly into my lap. One day, she presented me with a lovely lunch, for which I was very hungry. I even remember what it was: tomato soup, crackers and Cheerwine. I began the ritualistic flipping of the little lever, and Mom said, as usual, "Don't do that. You might make your food spill." Lo and behold, for the first (and last) time ever, my childish playing with the hinge resulted in a very quick, decisive folding down of the leaf, dumping my lunch, beverage and all, into my lap. Coated from top to bottom in my lunch, I looked at Mom and asked plaintively, "Why do I always have to learn the hard way?"

My nearly 40 year old self answers my ten year old self the same way that my Mom answered me then: Because that's the way that we learn best, and sometimes it just takes that sort of lesson for us to learn what we need to know.

It would appear that sometimes I still just don't learn.

Those of you who know me IRL (and you know who you are!) are here because I sent you a link. You won't find this blog by googling my name, where I live or any other specific reference about me - because I am now committed to online anonymity. Not because I am going to be blogging about my kinky sexual pecadillos, or because I outed Bob Novak as Dracula, but because I had a nice little blog before, and my ex-husband and his family decided to take up camp there. Any sort of reintroduction of my ex into my life in any way leads to unhappy nightmares of the worst sort (or just the weird sort - neither are pleasant). I begin to feel as if I am constantly in need of a shower. A shower with very hot water, brillo pads and a good flossing out between the ears. Not to put too fine a point on it, but he's a scary, bad man. I don't like who I am around him, and I sure don't like who he is around anyone. Or alone, for that matter.

So I have abandoned my old blog (all 200 pages of writing of it) and deleted it to the ether of the internet. Not without some sadness, but also not without some relief. Anything that Ex touches develops the pungent, clinging odor of turpentine, or perhaps sulfur, and I couldn't enjoy my blog anymore. But it's gone, and I'm not, but I miss writing. I enjoy blogging, dammit, and I enjoy creativity. I don't enjoy other people treating my work like it's a cat box and they're a very old tabby with incontenence issues, so I'm now Peacemonger Mom.

I will likely struggle to keep my posts as anonymous as possible - I was very much unconcerned about being who I was online, but all it took was once, and there we have it. If you know me, you'll know who the players are as I assign them pseudonyms. I won't be posting pictures as much, and there will likely be no pictures of Harry McSheddypants either. That makes me sad. I resent having to censor myself, I resent it terribly. But that might just be the narcissist in me. I'm not sure.

Why Peacemonger Mom? Because The Boy has joined the military, and is beginning bootcamp/basic training/hell in a few weeks. I'm still a mom, and I'm even more of a peacemonger now than before, as a result of TB's actions. As Lloyd Bridges said in "Airplane," "I picked a hell of a week to stop sniffing glue." I picked a hell of a time to delete my blog. It served for me as a real safety valve - once I was able to write it down, I was much better off. So rather than grit my teeth and shush my inner drive to write (even something as self involved as a blog), I am now P.M.

I fully expect TB to be sent overseas. Anyone enlisting at this time in history would have to have a serious case of cranial rectitis if they enlisted to begin with, I think, but to enlist and not expect to go somewhere sandy? Very stupid. So, I am doing my best to cope with this, but as is usually the case in situations like this, my best is not nearly good enough. I have had a few real beauties of crying spells, and can't seem to concentrate well. It's difficult to concentrate when there's a sound loop running through your head, like a terrorized hamster on a wheel, declaring in various stages of hysteria: Military! Fighting! Danger! He's put himself in danger! You can do nothing! Helpless! Danger to child! Must save child from himself! Can't save child from himself! Child not child! Child adult now! Child still child! Must save child!

See? Concentration with that sort of unhelpful dialogue running through my head is just impossible.

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