I'm a serial monogamist; a real relationship person.  And I'm not a casual relationship person.  I demand a lot of my partner.  I want to move and shake and give the same thing in return.  Either you can keep up or you can't.  Not many people can.

As you would expect, this can pose major problems when you're just beginning to date again.  Not only is it not easy to get to a point where you're deep & open & committed to someone, but it also takes time.  Anyone who wants to be at that point right away is most likely majorly bipolar and you should run like hell right out of that situation.

All of this?  Is why I SUCK at dating!  Gah!  I can't stand meeting someone I barely know and staging a little show for them for a few hours like I'm trying to sell myself.  That is the biggest bunch of crap I've ever dealt with and hate every minute of it.  I wish I had a time machine where I could just bypass all of the boring, crappy, getting to know you stuff that comes with dating and skip straight to the deeply committed, I know how he likes his coffee, he knows what I like from Applebee's, I know what side of the bed he sleeps on and he knows what kind of toilet paper I like part of it.  The real shit.  The real shit is where the good shit is.  I don't want to go through the uncomfortable experience of talking politics for the first time or finding out his stance on homosexuality.  There's not much worse than really think I'm diggin' a guy and that this could potentially go somewhere only to hear him call someone a "faggot" or a "homo" and in an instant (maybe even faster than that) know that he'll be lucky to see me stick around and finish a meal with him because that's just not something I will tolerate.

So where am I now?  I accepted a date with this really nice guy I met online.  We had exchanged a few letters and he just seemed SO nice.  And guess what?  He's even nicer than in his letters.  I'm hard-pressed at this point in time to find much wrong with this guy.  He's chivalrous, generous, funny, nice, seems like a good dad to his kids, etc etc etc.  There are only a few areas where I had some hesitancy and one would be: is he TOO nice?  If I'm my smart-ass self, will it offend him? The rest... he's MUCH taller than me (he seems to be more aware of it than I am though), he has a catholic background and I am Baptist.

I guess it's good that I've been in therapy, because one of the things I've learned is that it's not any kind of decision I have to make today.  Today I can just enjoy being around a really, really nice guy and not get stuck in my head worrying about forever. 

xoxo veronica


xoxo veronica


Gosh I miss my friends!

Ever have a conversation with an old friend that brings you
right back to your roots?
It smacks you back to earth & doesn't let you forget where you came from.

I love those actually. :)

I just got done talking to Wendy &
it was so good to hear her voice!

Her grandson when he was little called her "Gigi" & so it's a habit I picked up too.
For YEARS now whenever I have a stomach ache,
it's second nature for me to say (or at least think)
"My tummy hurt Gigi!"

So tonight when I said it, I figured I'd better call her
RIGHT NOW because it's just been long enough.

So we talked and laughed and covered all the usual like we always do.
(Please add her son Tedarian to your prayer list by the way.  Long story.  Medical issues.)

Anyways, the subject turned to hair as it always does.
I told her mine's the same old thing it always is...
grows out, cut it off, want it this way or that but it never actually happens.
blah blah blah

She then said what she always says (keep in mind Wendy is a black girl)....
"What you need to do is slick that shit back and buy you a different pony tail weave to wear every day.
You know that's what I do.  That's the easiest."

I replied, "Yeah, but that won't work for me!  I have thin, limpy white hair girl."

She then says, "White hair?  Shiiiiit.  You get you some black gel and slap that shit on there!
That hair will stay wherever the fuck you put it!  It'll be a whole new life for you!"

I love it.
xoxo veronica


All the scholar ladies, all the scholar ladies!

This is a VERY cute video that some students at a Christian school made.
Good job kids! :)
xoxo veronica


Words to live by!

"Women, you should NEVER be spending 
your money on a man!   
Any money you spend on dick 
is a BAAAAD investment!" 
~ Chris Rock

xoxo veronica


Things I have recently learned/been reminded of about dating....

  1. Comfy clothes rule.  I chronically lounge around in my sweats or pajamas.  I can't STAND being uncomfortable.  Dating a new guy?  Yeah, that pretty much means you're trying to look all cute in pre-determined outfits, etc.  And that?  BLOWS.  Not very long into this thing, I said screw that and went and threw on my cut-off sweatpants and a t-shirt with no bra.  Oh yes I did girl!  I figure, why put fake stuff out there?  Why only put the "pretty" out there when if this works out, he will eventually end up with "comfy V" anyways?  Put it out there now and that way if he doesn't like it, he can bounce while the bouncing's good.
  2. I'm getting slightly better with people in my space.  At least until they.....
  3. Spend at least NINE hours parked in front of my tv watching all kinds of sports.  *blank, angry stare*  Ummm..... yeah.  Pretty certain I still hate sports.  Maybe not as much as I did when I was married to Randy, I mean I can handle them to a certain point.  Yesterday when he came over and wanted to watch golf for five hours but was still open to conversation and what-not?  I was okay with that.  Today when he went from motocross to golf to baseball back to golf and now motocross is on again?  While I keep whining that the sports are driving me crazy and that I've already done everything BUT visit with him today... like TOOK A TWO HOUR NAP, took a shower, shaved my legs, did my hair and makeup, cleaned my bedroom AND did two loads of laundry (yeah, what a "date"!)?  Uh huh, I see this not happening again in my future.  He's sitting down-couch from me watching his stupid motocross and I'm already pretty much deciding his fate.  This is crap.
After all that, I decided to distract him.  I started making conversation and then at one point, I stood in front of the tv.  He looked BOTHERED and tried looking around me!  So I said, "Oh, am I blocking the screen?"  And then get this........... he said, "YES, it's back on!"  AT WHICH POINT he physically put his hand (jokingly?  who cares if it was jokingly!) on the side of my face and pushed me aside.  Big mistake.  Big, big, big mistake.

And you haven't even heard it all yet!

So after ten-plus hours, the sports are all done for the day.  At this point, he hands me the remote like he's doing me a favor and we watch something else.  Pretty soon, he's snoring through it. *sigh*  Know where he went next?  He crawled in my bed and went to sleep!  FOR THE NIGHT!  Yep, man I hardly know.  In my bed.  For no scandalous reason.  Ummmm..... not okay.  Eventually (around 1:30 or 2 in the morning), I go to sleep myself.  I hear him get up around 7 or so I'm guessing and I'm still really irritated so I ignore him.  I'm thinking maybe he'll do the right thing and just get out.  Um, nope.  He comes back in around 1:30 (YES! He stayed, just hanging out and watching tv until 1:30!) all smiles and kissy telling me he's gonna take off, but that he had a great time and can't wait to do it again!

I didn't even know how to respond to this at first and was all, "You did?  Hmm.  That's interesting.  I mean, you seemed sooooo, what's the word I want to use?  Distant, maybe?  I mean you didn't talk to me, didn't touch me, watched 10 hours of sports..... "

He smiled and kissed me on the forehead and said, "Just because I'm not touchy-feely ALL the time doesn't mean I'm not having a great time!  I have a GREAT time with you!"

"Yeah, well I'm not saying I need a constant feed, but I AM touchy-feely.  I need that.  AND I told you that the day before.  I did NOT have a great time."

"Well, I'll definitely remember that for next time.  I'll take care of that."

Hmm.  Next time.  Riiiiiiiight.
    xoxo veronica


    Baby steps

    Maybe I'm just tired, maybe Therapist would be right and I'm just not ready.  Either way, this morning I was having a bit of an internal freak-out and found myself entering a very "keep him out of my space" mindset.

    Not sure what brought it on because everything as far as the guy goes has been pretty good.  All I know is that when I thought about the date we have scheduled for later today, I went into a bit of a panic mode and started to feel trapped & shut-down.  One of my main problems is that I get so stuck in my own head and it's hard to find my way out.  My mind starts racing with different scenarios and how I would react to them, how I could protect myself, what red-flags to look for.  Before I know it, I'm in full-blown trauma mode and nothing real has even happened.  I've worked really hard lately at trying to stop that self-talk as soon as I feel it starting.

    One thing that really helped this morning?  Well, when I got off work I went to Wal-Mart to pick up a few things.  As I put each item in my cart, God pointed out to me that I can afford those things on my own.  After I left the store, I pulled in to get gas and once again God reminded me that I am able to afford that on my own as well.  See, one of the things that kept me stuck in an abusive marriage for so long was that he had financial control.  Not only was I afraid of him, but I didn't have the means to take care of myself or my children...therefore he had all the control.

    Praise God, not anymore.

    Lord willing, I will never again have to put up with bad behavior or disrespect for boundaries because I feel I have no options.  I am so grateful that I am blessed enough to know that I don't ever have to be in an uncomfortable situation again.  I can walk into situations with my guard down and with confidence because if I don't like the way I'm being treated or if I'm seeing some red-flags, all I need to do is remove myself from the situation because the only ones I am dependent on are God and myself.  For now, that's what I need to know and that's what makes me feel safe.  I'm also grateful that I've come far enough to recognize it all.

    xoxo veronica


    My life in pictures

    I posted this a few years ago & it's funny how much still applies!
    Thought I'd re-share it.

    How I sometimes feel....
    How I usually actually feel...
    What I wish for right now....

    What I'm afraid of....
    What I really want to say....
    What I pray for in the end....

    xoxo veronica


    Haven't checked in for a little while, so thought I would pop in & just say "hey."  So.... HEY!

    Not much has happened here lately, but I'm doing well.  Therapy is slow moving this week because I think she saw how strongly I reacted (read: I FREAKED out) when she brought up the idea of the EMDR.  So, we've been talking about things more and preparing for it, but nothing has officially started yet.  Which frankly is okay with me.  I've been feeling really crappy lately and didn't put two and two together until she said I need to pay attention to the reactions my body is giving because some people are very sensitive to changes, etc. and that some people have very vivid "body memories" when they start talking about trauma.  Their body will literally start feeling the way that it did at the time of the trauma.  Yep.... sooooo what I'm feeling like right now.  Collin always told me I was a "fragile ecosystem" and he's right on the money.

    And Therapist, if you're reading... STOP HERE!

    An another, more positive note ... I started talking to a guy about a week ago.  Therapist would say I'm trying to distract myself and fill holes (no nasty jokes intended [this time]).  She's probably right.  But at least he's a pleasant distraction!  Yeah, we're only a week into this thing, but most guys don't make it that long before I've decided they're on their way out the door.  He's still going strong.  I had one small red flag, but after a lengthy discussion about it today, I think things are pretty cleared up (holla!).  He's not typically what I'm attracted to physically (but when is anyone I actually date? lol).  That's the funny thing about looks...the older you get, the less they tend to matter.  I want to know about the "real shit."  The shit that will last long beyond the looks.  So okay... on to the real shit.

    He's a photographer by trade (and college education).  He likes that I'm a "smart-ass" (BIG bonus points for him!).  He drove a BMW until about 9 months ago when he got an Xterra instead (which I like).  Never been married, no kids but has 5 nephews.  Has travelled all over the globe.  (Yeah, he's kind of kicking my ass in this description, huh? lmao)  AND... he likes to cook.  AND... he sent me a text reminding me not to forget my lunch before work tonight!  (which I still did, but he tried) 

    Kids are good, work is good, I am good.  (*knock, knock*)
    xoxo veronica


    Guess I wasn't the only one....

    I've been saving this picture & planned to use it next month
    when I fly back to Dayton for Allison's wedding.

    This is what I've always called "Touchdown Jesus."

    Touchdown Jesus has always been VERY disturbing to me
    & never failed to freak me out whenever I saw it.
    You can't IMAGINE how huge this thing was!!!
    It totally dwarfed the big church it sat in front of.

    I guess I'm not the only one who thought Jesus looked like a football ref
    because I saw that there was an article announcing
    "Touchdown Jesus is on fire!"

    Lightning struck it!
    Yep, it's totally gone now.

    Guess I wasn't the only one disturbed by it!

    xoxo veronica



    From my point of view, therapy is going at a snail's pace.  It feels like I go over the same old crap every single week and never make a bit of progress.  I feel like I am raw and open and crying all of the time.  Needless to say, I've just been feel very discouraged.

    So, imagine my surprise when my therapist says tonight that she thinks I'm at about the half-way point of therapy.  Seriously?  I still feel like I am barely walking in the door!  I know that she is by no means saying that I'm DONE, but wow she is optimistic and obviously sees a whole lot that I don't see in order to see me as half-way.

    Whatever though.  I can't deny that it wasn't encouraging.  She proposed the idea of beginning EMDR therapy (I'm sure Google will explain it better than I will), which is supposed to be very effective for treating post traumatic stress.  Not only is it effective, but from what I've read tonight, it's supposed to work FAST (relatively speaking).  This is extremely exciting to me, as I'm ready to be "better" as quickly as possible.  Although the thought of it at first terrified me and I burst into sobbing tears at the thought of having to remember some of these traumas even more deeply than I already do, after calming down a little and googling the heck out of it, I am super-excited about getting started.

    One of my concerns is how long it's going to take.  I mean, although it's supposed to be fast and effective, it's still going to take FOREVER if we have to go trauma by trauma.  Yeah, I know...it'll still be much faster than if I weren't doing it at all.  True, very true.  Which is why I really am excited to get started.  I can't believe I've never heard of this therapy before.  Have any of you guys heard of it?

    xoxo veronica

    Just finished....

    I really liked this book.
    Mainly because the ending was so unexpected.
    I can't say  more than that or it will give it away!

    xoxo veronica

    Just finished....

    LOVED this book.
    Really, I loved it.
    Not only was it set in the Cleveland area
    and she worked at the newspaper 
    that was only a few blocks from my home,
    but she had some really good things to say.
    I feel like I could have written it.

    xoxo veronica


    Sweetie Veronica

    I received a wonderful surprise in my mailbox yesterday!

    As soon as I saw the address, I knew that it was something
    from my super-awesome friend Joni.
    Joni was one of the unit secretaries at my old hospital
    that I worked with for years.
    We had many, many long nights full of conversation & laughter
    & she was even going to go ghost hunting with me!! :)

    Only Joni would handle my wasband with the grace she did
    when he got drunk out of his mind at a work get-together.
    She even crawled under the picnic table with him to look for....
    well, forget it.  I'm not saying out loud what it was. lol
    If you've heard the story then you already know. 

    And I'll never forget when Joni's daughter Mel 
    came running across a funeral home (YES, you heard that right!)
    to grab my hand and rub it!
    "It's the SOFT SKIN GIRL!!!"
    is what she said. lol  
    She said, "I've never ever forgotten you and your soft skin!
    It's the softest skin I've EVER felt in my life!
    Baby oil gel, right?"

    I just smiled and nodded my head saying, "yes, baby oil gel."

    Anyways, yesterday I received a card from Joni just saying hi and she misses me.
    She made me smile and giggle out loud by just reading the opening line...
    "Sweetie Veronica..."
    I can hear her saying that. :)

    There's NOTHING like encouraging little bits of love from new friends,
    but it's even better when it comes from old friends.
    THAT is the good stuff.

    *freeze this!*

    xoxo veronica


    xoxo veronica

    One of my new obsessions

    Oh yeah... it's that good!

    I LOVE IT!
    xoxo veronica

    Somewhere in the distance

    The thought, "I should blog..." crosses my mind many times a day because really, all I want to do is write.  I want to work on my book, I want to write a short story, hell I would even be satisfied to write a great Tweet sometimes. 

    So what gives?

    I don't know.  I have had a writer's block that has increasingly worsened over the past few years that I'm not sure what to do about.  It's like being in a relationship where you talk and talk and talk... and then suddenly, you're not sure what to say because you've covered everything.  Nothing new has happened during the day, nothing funny has come to your mind...there's just silence.  And that's okay.  Sometimes the silence is even good.  I always base a lot of my opinion of someone on how they handle those silences.  Can I feel their anxiety?  Can you see them itching for something to say?  Are their eyes darting all over the room making it obvious that they're searching for something to say?  Crap, I hope not.  That's the worst isn't it?  Being with someone who is uncomfortable in their own skin to the point that they can't even be still and enjoy the silence with you.  No, silence is sometimes sweet.

    The truth is, I can feel it coming though.  I can feel the ground starting to tremble beneath my feet and can just barely make out the sound of water somewhere in the distance.  Someday soon, the rushing rapids are going to come raging through here and the dam will burst open.  And then LOOK OUT!  Because the words they'll be a'flyin'!
    xoxo veronica



    Allowing myself to feel my feelings lately instead of trying to make nice & pretty like I usually do, I'm finding myself really surprised by the things that I'm still angry about.  Things that I thought I had gotten over or forgiven years ago.

    One of my favorite things to do is to flip the tv to on-demand and see what documentaries HBO has going.  I love documentaries just like I love non-fiction books.  I have always been fascinated by what goes on behind scenes in other people's lives and situations. 

    Tonight there was one on the list about a teenage boy who committed suicide.  At first, I literally said out loud, "Oh nooooo..... I cannot go there.  Not tonight."  After seeing there was nothing else that really interested me, I decided to take a deep breath and see what this show was all about.  I figured it would be something tragic and sad, but something that had nothing to do with me.

    Boy was I wrong.

    It was about a boy who was diagnosed at a very young age with childhood bipolar and then goes on to kill himself at the age of 15 after experimentally taking him off of his meds to see how he'd do.  *sigh*  The kid wanted off the meds and the parents wondered if he was still bipolar because he was doing so well (*sigh* again).  The experiment failed miserably.

    I don't even really know where to begin.  This movie resonated so strongly with me because I have lived through it and then some.  By the end of the film I realized two things in life I am still really angry about.

    Bipolar and my ex-husband Randy. 

    The first thing, I will never be able to make better.  The second thing...well, I don't think I'll be able to make that better either.  One of the problems is that he will never even talk to me about the problem.  If I try to force the conversation on him, he just shuts down on me, silently shaking his head no, because he thinks I'm wrong.  I'm not wrong.  And there may be no changing his mind, but maybe at this point I can find some peace within myself about it.  It's pretty much too late to change his mind anyways.  Time has all but run out for proactive parenting.


    That one single word is associated with so much trauma in my life.  I have seen if affect the lives of so many people.  Family, coworkers, friends, lovers.  Never for the better either. Relationships have been damaged and/or lost.  Marriages have failed.  Abuse and trauma have occurred.  Financial ruin has come.  All because of that one single word.

    Darren was diagnosed around the age of three.  There were so many reasons that I began thinking that my little boy needed help, but the one that got me seriously moving was that he had already began talking about suicide.  Seeking help way back then began the long, emotional journey through counseling and medications.  That also began the long, emotional journey of battling my ex-husband to keep Darren in counseling and on medications. 

    From the beginning all the way up to this day I would hear "there's nothing wrong with my boy."  I would hear about how I only wanted him medicated because I didn't want to be a mother and would rather have my kid doped up than have to be a parent.  I would also hear that the behavior problems were all my fault because I had been in an abusive marriage.  Well, yeah, that may play a part in some of the behavior issues he faced, but there is so much more to it than that.  Little boys do not do the things Darren did and cry how they want to have a gun and are going to see Jesus.  There is something wrong when they do that. 

    And it only got worse as the years went on.  One day when Darren's psychiatrist threatened to stop seeing him because "In twenty years of doing this, I have never seen a child in as bad of shape and as hateful as Darren.  He needs his meds increased for sure."  I cried and asked him to please call Randy on the phone right that very minute and tell him the same thing because he didn't believe a word of it when it came from me.  Unfortunately, he didn't believe it when it came from the doctor either.  The doctor did eventually refuse to see Darren anymore and referred us to someone else, but not before warning me, "Don't be afraid to sleep with your doors locked."

    Even with that reality in my face, I am the queen of second-guessing and I would often wonder if I was doing the right thing.  Was Randy right?  Was I making the right decision to put him on meds?  I can now fully and confidently say YES, I was doing the right thing.

    Eventually, as Darren started to get older, the things his Dad told him started to take root in his brain.  He began to hide his pills after pretending to take them.  The levels in his blood became so inconsistent and "off" that the side effects were really bad and he was having trouble with things like nausea and with his balance.  Instead of helping to make sure our son took his medication properly so that he could get better, Randy had a screaming fit and said that over his dead body would he ever see his son take another pill. 

    There aren't even words to describe how badly that devastated me.  That is one of the things that I am angriest about to this day.  I feel like I had to sit back and watch my son's life get flushed down the toilet because of a man who had so much pride that he didn't want to admit there was anything wrong with his boy.  At some part of his core, I think he was trying to do what he thought was best for Darren, but instead of educating himself on the situation and the disease that was facing him, he made ignorant and dangerous choices that affected everyone around him.  The time to create a strong foundation for what needs to happen in adult life is when they are children and you can still force it on them.  In the documentary, the boy's psychiatrist said,
    "In psychiatry, bipolar is our cancer.  It kills people.  You do everything you can and some people can't be saved... we probably could have saved him... for a while.  But he would have gone off his meds... all these kids do."
    Why has our story turned out differently than the one in the film?  Because we're lucky.  Period. 

    Bipolar is what bipolar is.  Yes, there are people  all up and down the spectrum from mild to severe.  Unfortunately, my son tends to land somewhere between the middle and severe and when you're dealing with a person that is that depressed and/or defiant, you're playing russian roulette with their lives (or the lives of people around them) if you don't insist on them being medicated.   

    This disease just pisses me off so bad!  If I never have to hear the word bipolar again that would be just fine with me.  I almost didn't write this post by the way.  I have people that I love dearly that are dealing with this or may take what I've written personally (they almost never do, but I'm always afraid someone will).  As a matter of fact, there's someone that I love that doesn't even know that I know they found out they are bipolar.  Doesn't matter how I found out, but I did, and I cried all night for them when I did find out.  Or was I crying for me?  Maybe both.

    xoxo veronica


    Hope is a choice....

    One year ago today,
    I boarded a plane all by myself
    and headed out to start my new life.

    I was nervous (no, scared),
    but had faith that it was all going to be okay.
    I knew that I knew that I knew that it was going
    to be the beginning of something beautiful.

    And it was.

    xoxo veronica
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