Confessions of a Filmaholic

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I was 11 years old when I fell in love for the first time. I was mesmerized by clear blue eyes. His gravelly voice reminded me of a film star from one of those old 50’s movies I had watched. He possessed a rugged manly appeal.

With conservative Christian parents my movies were regulated to wholesome family or classic movies with a PG and under rating. So, there I sat in the dark watching a PG-13 movie I had snuck into with my best friend. While I was drinking in the rough character, being sucked further into his thrall with every scene. My best friend is undergoing the same pull for the younger, pretty boy lead. As it so happens that will be a recurring theme to this day. Her falling for the pretty boy, me the tough, manly types.

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I walked out of that theater having met the love of my life. While Rowdy Burns had captured my attention and greatly influenced the type of men I would be attracted to for the rest of my life. My true love was film.

The complexities of the sets, details in costumes design, depth of the characters; for that hour and forty-eight minutes I was a part of Rowdy’s world. By no standards was this an Oscar worthy film or even a particularly good film. Yet, it had the power to close my mind to everything but the movie playing out on that screen. I didn’t worry about the words I had crossed with my father earlier that day, I was blissfully transported outside of my world and problems. It was a feeling I would grow to love, crave, and experience over and over as I drank in every video my 3 local rental stores had.

I was right there with Bastian as he stole the book with the Auryn Symbol. I followed Alice down her rabbit hole. My heart pounded with Indy as he ran from the boulder, and watched as the Goonies band together to save the house. I cheered as Janie and Jeff stood against the entitled rich. Like so many others I sat in shock after Darth Vader pronounced “Luke, I am your father.”

I knew who to call, wanted to save Farris, and saw railroad tracks with the potential of a dead body at the end as an adventure waiting to be had. The triple dog dare could not be backed down from, just as a boombox held up in the air became the most romantic idea ever. We couldn’t stop laughing over stolen Huggies, while “As you wish.” taught us that sometimes what is said means something else completely. Engraved on my heart were the three rules; NO water, NO sunlight, and NEVER feed them after midnight. From action to gut bustin’ comedies, or dramatic love stories. There is literally a movie for every situation and mood. I was bound and determined to see them all.

So, while relationships breakdown at times, friendships can fracture, one thing hasn’t changed, the joy I get from an entertaining movie. I am forever thankful that Rowdy drew me in, so I could discover the power of film, a love that’s never let me down.

 

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Let’s Talk Mother’s Guilt

zcamera-20171210_174106.jpgWhy is it that we feel we must justify our time? Is it because we have all grown up hearing the stereo type of stay at home mothers who just watch TV eating chocolate? I can’t help wondering why I feel I must earn my down time? I reason with myself, I have already done blah, blah, blah. Therefore, I can now relax with a movie guilt free. But, like always there is the fine print. If I am earning my down time is it really guilt free? The answer for me is sadly, NO.

Take this morning for example. I’m up at six am to get my five-year-old dressed, through the cold wind and, in the car to meet the bus. We are at the stop by 6:30 am on time, unfortunately, the bus didn’t make it until 7:15 am. With a kiss goodbye to Aidan, I swung by the video store to drop off some movies. Thinking to get some extra sleep crawl back in bed only to have my 13-year-old come down and tell me he had overslept missing his bus. Waiting for him to get dressed I pick up the living room, and start a load in the washer. We make it to the school with 2 minutes and 38 seconds to spare.  On my way home knowing I’m not getting back to sleep I decided a fuzzy blanket, some hot cocoa and this Marilyn Monroe movie I found at the video store last night is just the way to spend this cold morning. It’s called Bus Stop and I’ve never seen it before.

So, I put some milk on the stove and realize it feels a bit grimy. My husband cleaned the stove last night. I take a minute to wipe the stove, and put the few dishes from the sink into the washer and start it. Eventually, I did get my cocoa made but I had realized I was still earning my down time. Fluffy blanket covering me I relax to enjoy Marilyn only to occasionally notice that toy under the edge of the entertainment center, or that the washer had stopped. By the end of the movie which took 3 hours to watch due to my constant pausing. I was very disappointed both in the plot and its ending. (It’s not one I would recommend unless you’re just trying to watch Monroe’s complete filmography.)

During that time, I had swept the living room, done two loads of laundry, accidentally knocking a toy into the lint trap which had caused my husband to have to take apart the back of the dryer to get out. Which took him an hour. I did find my sons missing library book and replaced the ornaments the cat has knocked off the tree. My cocoa was cold… and I really hadn’t relaxed at all.

But why do I feel this almost compulsion to be productive around the house if I am not working. Right now, I am on medical leave I’m four weeks post op from a hysterectomy and I feel guilty if I’m not doing things around the house. No exaggeration as I write this, I’m also thinking the floor needs to be mopped, and I think that’s marker on the edge of that couch! Shaking my head. Where does this imaginary guilt come from, I’ve failed in no way. I’ve done nothing wrong, so why does it feel like I’m not doing my job completely in the home?

I don’t really have any answers to these questions. However, I do believe guilt is a choice. I make a choice to either except my perceived guilt or I don’t. Truth is more times than not; I expect more from myself than anyone else does, I believe I am failing way more than I am, and most my weaknesses generally only exist in my head.  I am flawed, complex and still haven’t got this mom thing down. I have made serious mistakes, I’ve also had wonderful wins.

What is your mommy guilt? What do you do to pamper yourself?

Best Wishes,

K

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A Moment of Clarity

Overwhelmed in every way possible, I was coming off a seventy-two-hour work week between my two jobs. My marriage nothing more than a filing status. An out of control five-year-old, a depressed teen, and a self-described invisible child about to enter his teens. Last year our lives were forever changed by a mistake most parents have made. My husband, in a store, put a helmet on our son Aidan then knocked on the helmet to see if it would protect him. Aidan said he could feel it. My husband put the helmet back and left with my son. Half an hour later the police were at the house to arrest him for injury to a child. It would take almost a year to get the D.A.’s office to turn over the surveillance video. All that time my husband was insistent that he didn’t hurt Aidan he barely hit the helmet.

The police department told me he PUNCHED my son three times in the head. An exaggeration, something highly misleading. They lied to me! Then arrested my husband in front of our kids. We were threatened by CPS that if I let him near the kids they would take them from me. Yet, my husband’s story never changed. Once the judge saw the tape he immediately granted my husband’s lawyers request to drop the charges. We could now pick up the pieces of our lives. 

But, I have realized I am still stuck in survival mode and have forgotten how to live. I went from doing everything with a partner, to alone. Working to not need financial support, not an easy transition for me. The only thing I knew for sure I don’t want back in the partnership. 

Overworking for monthes I now did the unthinkable, I had said no. I put myself first. I had been workin  for a friend at his store and already put in 45 hours that week for him. He asked me to come in on Sunday, a day I never work the store and was a day promised to my second job. He wanted me to come work for him after I finished for the day, and I said no. He gave me sad eyes and it made me feel guilty but I went home.

I put on my pajamas, watched old Saturday Night Live skits with my kids, while working on a puzzle with Aidan. We laughed, a lot. I had forgotten how funny my boys can be. I had missed this, I missed hanging out with them. I had been working so much we had not been connecting as a family anymore. My children were growing, while I was trying to survive and keep us together, I was missing so much. I need to stop working so much, picking up extra hours at the store.

I have a bucket list like so many others, but now the boys and I are adding things to do as a family, and as individual and one on one time. To reconnect. To grow. I don’t want to miss out on my boy’s life and interests.  I plan to fill this blog with things we do, our experiences, our interests. I would love for you to join us on this journey.

 

Best wishes,

K