Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by scent of cedar, Aug 5, 2013.

  1. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    So, difficult child came home the day our house guest arrived. He is 75. Recently widowed. (Like three months ago.) difficult child is 39.

    They seemed to hit it off. Visit has been very pleasant.

    Last night, the two of them came back from fishing and announced that the friend (who lives right next door to us down South, by the way) is hiring difficult child to work in his business. He is providing room and board. (In a private conversation earlier in the week, husband had told me, in front of the friend, that he did not think he wanted difficult child coming South with us. No more was said about it, as the houseguest was there. Apparently, the houseguest took that to heart, and took the situation out of our hands, entirely.)

    He finds her a "fascinating woman." Says he realizes the age difference, and that difficult child will have her own bed and bath. There was some joking around about having to call me "mom." Which everyone thought was pretty funny.

    Except me.

    ***Colorful swear words, some in foreign languages, go here.****

    The houseguest leaves tomorrow.

    The plan is for him to fly her down in about three weeks.

    I asked the houseguest what his 50 year old daughter was going to think about this.

    His response, essentially, was that he didn't care.

    I asked the houseguest whether he had considered that he was in a vulnerable place right now, having just lost his wife.

    His response was that she had been sick for a long time.

    difficult child is also making noise about getting her kids back. The kids are doing well ~ very well, and no longer need her. I'm sure this is fairly typical of women who have lost or left their children, and I don't much care for it. As you all know, what difficult child allowed in her home, that she allowed her children to suffer what they suffered this past winter, is something that still makes me see red. I don't support her "right" to have the kids with her ~ or anywhere near her ~ again, until she has turned things around and proven herself. difficult child has full legal custody of the fourteen year old, and equal custody rights for both boys. It hasn't really been an issue, because difficult child was living on the streets herself and had no way to get to where the kids are. That will all change, with the houseguest's house and money involved. I am deciding to believe for the best out of this situation. We will testify against difficult child if we can, should there be an opportunity to do so.

    difficult child has been relatively sober since coming home. The man responsible for the car accident/homelessness/drug use is now in jail in relation to the accident. If the man were not in jail? difficult child would still be living on the streets with him by choice. She has been to visit him in jail once, already.

    I don't know what to think, or how to think about this. One of the thinks I am thinking is: no more freedom from anything to do with difficult child when we go South. This will mean the loss of a psychological safe haven for husband and I.

    And of course, it changes the nature of the friendship between the houseguest and myself.

    Another is a sense of disgust and betrayal, for both difficult child and the houseguest.

    In the houseguest's defense, I will say that I think he believes he is giving difficult child the opportunity to get away from the lifestyle she has been living. He is a very kind, very generous man. In their marriage, it was the wife who was the tough one, who was the one who handled the money, who was the one who said what was what.
    I think husband's comment to me that he didn't want difficult child to go South with us struck the houseguest as unkind.

    I am reminding myself to keep a good attitude about this. I am reading Joel Osteen. I am reminding myself that I believe there is a larger plan.

    Oy fricking vey.

    As another of us is signing her posts in a similar fashion to mine, I will sign myself Cedar from here on in.

  2. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Ugh! How infuriating! Watch her end up living the life!


    And detach. Even from the houseguest if need be.
  3. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh my. What a tangled web we weave...........our difficult child's continually pull us into their web, sticky and snug, that feeling of not being able to move freely in our own lives.......yikes.......I am so, so very sorry Barbara.............

    I can relate to your angers, your frustration, your incredulousness....your daughter and mine are so similar. I have come to realize that my daughter is capable of extreme manipulation in order to survive and/or get her needs met. Your daughter seems to have found her next victim, a vulnerable, generous, kind older man who is still in the throes of grief, therefore not thinking clearly. Geez.

    My daughter lived with a young man, a friend of hers for two years without paying any rent. She used him until in order to make her move out, he had to give up his apartment and move to a smaller one saying she could not come to the new one and had to leave. And still she waited until the last moment, stalling, stalling until this guy was in his bedroom crying and my daughter simply made him wrong and had no insight into how much she robbed him of. Now she lives with a woman my age, a woman who has major health issues and depression. My difficult child has lived with her for 16 months and has not paid any rent for 13 months of that time. I paid the first 3 months. The woman has been asking my daughter to leave for a year, my daughter refuses, she says she "has rights." The woman is too sick and too codependent to take any action, so my daughter remains there and complains about how she is "tormented." Sigh.

    I understand exactly how you feel Barbara. This man may find out in a difficult fashion, just how big a mistake he is making. For me, all of these bizarre and parasitic choices my daughter makes are another opportunity for me to detach and accept what I cannot change. Sometimes the level of bad choices and lack of personal responsibility is so outlandish to me that it's hard for my brain to even take it in. I try to do what a wise person told me to do, step back, make every attempt not to judge (that can be REALLY hard) and continue to surround my daughter with love..............you are not responsible for her choices or the fall out for this man. All you can do is step back, take a deep breath, go on with your life and as more unfolds, make your choices then.

    Just as an aside, early Saturday morning, 1:30 AM in fact, my phone rang waking me up from a sound sleep. It was my daughter's 63 year old roommate telling me my difficult child had borrowed her car at 4 PM to run a quick "25 minute" errand and had not returned. She asked me to contact my daughter if I could and let her know that her roommate was reporting the car stolen. I left a message for my difficult child on her phone and went back to bed. Amazingly, I did not ruminate or worry, I thought it through realizing there was nothing I could do and recalled having spent countless nights worrying about something that never happened while my daughter never gave it a second thought. I was pretty proud of myself for being able to stay calm and go to sleep! The next morning at 10 AM, the woman called saying my daughter had still not returned, now she was worried. I hardly reacted, I said, "she's probably sleeping somewhere and as she usually does, forgets about time and any responsibilities and other people's feelings." SO and I went out for the day and incredibly I was able to put all of this aside. We returned at around 6 to a tearful, sad voice message from my difficult child stating she had run out of gas and had slept in the car, she had no phone..........on and on............I erased the message and started dinner. I just had no responses to the whole episode. I thought to myself, if something terrible has happened, I will certainly be notified..........and I went on with my life. Sigh. I think, for me, that is as good as it gets. We work and work to get detached and rather then a band playing and a parade, what happens is that one day, we simply respond differently and it changes everything.

    Continue staying on your track and enjoying your life...............your daughter's choices are hers, the mans choices are his...........I am sorry, I know how you feel................do your very best to let it go............
  4. Scott_G

    Scott_G Member

    I totally hear where you are coming from. I was having a similar thought about my son the other day. It's just bad choice after bad choice that led him to where he is today. I told my wife that I just can't possibly comprehend what is going through his head during all of this. He's lost pretty much everything in his life and is on the verge of being homeless, yet he continues to make terrible choices.
  5. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I've worked really hard on detaching from GFGmom and yet...she still can make choices that I find totally unbelievable. She is almost fifty. I am REALLY sorry that coincidence is resulting in the loss of your safe haven. As a 70 something myself I do think there may be conflicting goals on the part of your neighbor. I'd guess it is weighed heavily by lonliness. on the other hand there is a common fear of "lost youth" that triggers alot of poor choices as well. How you and husband are going to use the wisdom of the Serenity Prayer with this set of circumstances...I haven't a clue. I'm just sorry. Hugs DDD
  6. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    Well, busywend, I would be happy if difficult child were "living the life."

    I just wish it didn't have to impact mine. I do love difficult child? But I don't want her living with the husband of one of my recently deceased friends right next door to me before there has even been time for a memorial service.

    Will he bring difficult child to the service for his deceased wife?!?

    Oy frickin' vey, as someone must have said, once.

    Who would ever have thought.

    Recovering, thank you for relating the latest incident with your difficult child. You were able to choose, and to stick to your guns regarding your chosen attitude. That is what I need to do, too. Just look at this like something Heaven sent for difficult child.

    DDD? Your comment about not knowing how husband and I were going to use the Serenity Prayer for this one made me laugh!


  7. svengandhi

    svengandhi Well-Known Member

    Have you thought of contacting houseguest's daughter and giving her a heads up to look after her dad's finances? Maybe she could be power of attorney? This sounds like something my sister would do assuming she could find someone willing to take her in.
  8. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    I'm feeling better, today.

    Thanks to each of you for your responses. It's just so hard to know how to look at things, sometimes. What husband and I have concluded is that, as Recovering noted in her post, we have a choice as to what we believe about what comes, next. Though difficult child has been a wild child from birth, she has never been a thief. She has never been intentionally unkind. She has never blamed anyone else for her situation. She is compassionate to a fault. When she has anything ~ a place to live, a car, food, money ~ she shares whatever she has with whoever needs what she has. All of which goes to say that, in retrospect, I really don't believe our neighbor/houseguest is in danger or will be taken advantage of. The more I thought about this whole thing, the more sort of embarrassed I am at my initial response.

    This conclusion is one we chose. It's a matter of pushing the fear away. Plus, we will be right next door, should anything nasty start to happen. (Okay, it's still a little scary. Like I said, we chose to believe for the best, heart palpitations and all.)

    Like all of us here, I am learning how to do this, too.

    It is difficult to see a difficult child child as trustworthy or decent ~ or even, sometimes, as a person who can come back from their mistakes. We have built up a kind of armor to protect ourselves. It is a really scary thing to allow trust or vulnerability, or to allow someone else to be vulnerable to, difficult child.

    But the emotion we have decided on, the reality we have decided to perceive, is to believe in difficult child, and in the good outcome, for all of us.

    That this series of events happened as they did can be seen as almost a miraculous occurrence. I am thinking that one over.


    After six months homeless and living on the street, difficult child calls to come home the very day we are collecting the houseguest from the airport. The only reason she calls is because the police have picked up the bad man up and put him in jail over the run-the-van-into-the-stone-wall incident. Which happened April 1st. There is no attempt on difficult child's part to hide anything about who she is or where she has been ~ or why ~ from the houseguest. The houseguest likes her anyway. husband happens to say, in front of the houseguest, that he doesn't think he wants difficult child to come South with us, sort of forcing an issue the houseguest must already have been considering as a way to help difficult child, when she arrived with us, in October. (I am very sure difficult child would have come with us in October, if that is what she wanted. husband is pretty much the boss around our house. After me, I mean. :O)

    So, one way or another, difficult child would have come South, anyway, unless she refused.

    The bad man with whom she has been living on the streets (and who has been beating her since their relationship began) will be in jail for something like the coming five years.

    difficult child's children are adjusting beautifully to their situations with difficult child's ex-husband. Their lives are stable, they are surrounded by exDH's good, decent family. They will be attending good schools. difficult child's exDH continues to keep contact with us, and may even come, with the kids, to visit next summer.

    The way everything has worked out so precisely seems almost supernaturally, purposefully, perfect.

    So, we're back to Joel Osteen, and believing for the best.

    If you haven't read those materials yet, please do so. Or, try to catch one of his sermons. You can call them up online, if you like. Even if things don't work out, even when I was certain we were looking at losing difficult child, that understanding that I had the right and the ability to determine my own response to events out of my control helped me stand up again. (For those who don't know, difficult child was being beat, sometimes badly enough to wind up hospitalized ~ or was drinking to the point of alcohol poisoning and winding up hospitalized, though that only happened once that I know of ~ almost as a matter of course. Drug use was a part of the picture. Oddly enough, at least according to difficult child, it was the bad man who put a stop to the drug use. He had watched a former girlfriend lose her limbs due to injecting drugs. Anyway, to go back to difficult child. She had closed head injuries twice that I know of, and a lacerated liver one time. Proceeded to drink and drug and who knows what with the liver laceration. Homeless and living on the streets through the very cold Winter. The winter before last? difficult child was an excellent, beloved, highly motivated teacher, working with at-risk adolescents.)

    I could cry for husband and myself, when I think back on this year.

    Other parents, read the Joel Osteen materials, if you can.

    Daring Greatly, by Brene Brown. (Recovering, you were right. This is a beautifully done book.)

    Posting here, so helpful, too.

    I feel a little like Roy Scheider in Jaws. Sunny day, boat is running well. Spooky music in the background. The shark is still under there....

    But for today, for this minute, husband and I have been able to choose to believe for the best. Not in a Polly Anna way, I don't think.

    Everything may change, tomorrow. But for right now, it feels like we have learned that it is possible to choose to survive the horror of watching a child self-destruct without losing sight of the potential for joy, in our own private lives. Once you can see that, you can pick that reality over the dark, hellish one we spent the winter in. If we can do that, you can, too. I don't know whether it is possible to pick that brighter reality in the thick of the chaos self-destructing difficult children cause. But I do know it is worth trying to do that.

  9. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Well...........you never know, this older man might actually be a really good influence on difficult child as far as growing up and turning her life around.

    But I do totally get where you're coming from and don't blame you. I'd feel the same way.

    I felt for Fred's bro and wife when they made the decision to distance themselves from difficult child niece and retire in Va. Such a lovely plan it was..............until both their grown kids decided to join them. I will never forget the expression on my sister in law's face when she told me. I thought she was going to start crying. Not much she could do as neither were planning on living with her and made their own arrangements.

    Often the best laid plans........

    I hope this works out well and doesn't turn out to be a mega drama fest. Detach as much as you can. This man is old enough to know better, vulnerable or not.

  10. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm so glad you're feeling better today Barbara. I am also relieved to learn that your difficult child is a kind person like her Mom. I apologize for assuming that your difficult child was like my difficult child, yours does not sound as if manipulation of others is part of her character. As you stated, perhaps this is a divine intervention, something which can help your daughter and your house-guest get through difficult transitions. We just don't know how things will turn out.........it becomes more complex when we've been around the block with our kids............I pray that your daughter finds peace..........

    Thanks for your post, I was thinking about you a lot and sending you good thoughts.........
  11. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    Thank you, Lisa. Yep. I'm thinking that is just how my face looked too, when husband and I found the where-is-difficult child-going-to-live thing taken right out of our hands. How is the sister-in-law, now?

    Actually, I would be so happy to have difficult child living closer to me. But not when she is drugging and drinking and running with the worst people imaginable. It is so shaming to live with everyone knowing what your child is doing, and wondering what kind of parents you must have been, for that to have happened to your child. That was one of the good things about life down South. No one even knew our children had been difficult children.

    Ha! Looks like my incognito life is over. :O)


    I am probably too concerned about what people think of me, anyway.

    Still, it was very, very nice to pretend our family was normal.

    husband says I have to be happy to have had that experience, at all! He's right, of course.


    The man, though he is 75, is vital, totally oriented. He is actively running his own business. For the past six or seven years, he took excellent care of an increasingly incapacitated wife, until her recent death. I can understand his motivation in wanting to help difficult child. I can understand him offering her room and board to take that pressure off about living with her parents. I can understand his decision not to waste any more time before declaring his intentions.

    I am good with all that, now. I even thanked the man. Sincerely, even.

    That was a good thought, though.


  12. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Sister in law is less than thrilled she was unable to escape the drama of difficult child niece. (which is not profound but it certainly does get old)

    She is coping with much detachment. MUCH MUCH detachment. lol For instance, I'm her fb friend, niece is not.......because sister in law can't handle what might come across her page. I am nieces friend but her behavior does not affect me the same way. (niece by the way is a year younger than I am)

    The same doesn't apply to her son and family because he is not a difficult child...........however he does have a full blown over the top difficult child step daughter, whom she has completely and totally detached from until the girl can get her act together.

    I feel for her though, I really do.
  13. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    No, Recovering. You are right. difficult child is a subtle, master manipulator. She can lie so convincingly. Each in our own way, she pretty much has both husband and I right where she wants us, most of the time. (For instance, that we were putting $30 into her account every week to help defray the costs of living in the home of the woman who took her in, initially. We continued to do that, every week, even after she was back on the streets through her own choice. As we now understand it, she has been receiving something like $120 in food stamps every month. So, what was she doing then, with the $120 she was getting from us? Drinking? Drugging? Do we feel foolish? husband says: "That money was for me to feel better about myself. It was given so difficult child will not be penniless and on the streets. What she used it for is not my concern."

    So, that's pretty healthy. Given our misery over the situation, $120 a month was not so much to pay, for a little peace of mind.

    Today? The houseguest is on his way home. difficult child is going to visit the bad man in prison. Then? She is going to sell her food stamps.


    I am CHOOSING to believe for the best.

    I am concerned about the houseguest, too. But husband and I have been talking about how unusual it is for a houseguest to create the situation that now exists, not only without discussing it with us first, but after having discussed it with difficult child. Essentially, rendering us powerless to stop or change or effect the situation in any way.

    Sort of...triangulating, if you think about it.


    Nasty, to understand that someone you are hosting is disrespecting you in that way.

    Which is where the capacity to choose our reaction comes in.

    Whatever the outcome of all this is, the nature of the relationship between the houseguest and ourselves is altered, is a little dirtied. This has gone from hosting a neighbor who just lost his wife to something that feels a little like a spider's web.

    So, all those thoughts are in here, too, Recovering. As I said in the second post, husband and I are choosing to view a really weird situation from as positive a place as we can.

    For our own sakes.

    Any way you look at it, the houseguest's behavior was inappropriate. This may turn out to be a good thing for difficult child. But what kind of man is it who does what the houseguest has done? Who preys on a woman in difficult child's position? A woman who is half his age? Because, looked at from another perspective, that is exactly what the houseguest has been doing. difficult child has nothing, at this point. She has no way to come back, other than to be dependent on her parents.

    I will say that difficult child is continuing to pursue the options she has available to her, here. There aren't many, but there are some. Maybe, she is wondering too, about this houseguest. I would imagine the bad man, the one in jail for the accident, will have a thing or two to say about the houseguest. difficult child will spend tonight with the man who rescue/kidnapped her from the bad man on the 4th of July. He will have input to give, too.

    Hard to say, and senseless to speculate about.

    difficult child is scheduled to come home again, tomorrow night.

    I don't know the answers to any of these questions. That is what I meant, when I said we are not seeing things through Polly Anna eyes.

    You are so right, Recovering, when you tell us to choose our emotional responses. We will have the joy and wonder of what it might be, unless and until it turns out to be something awful. But just between you and me and everyone here on the site? Things are already looking a little Quasimodo-like.

    That is what I meant by choosing our emotional realities and responses.

    If things are going to get bad, they will get bad whether I worry myself sick about it first, or not.

    Truthfully? I think learning this secret of choosing our emotional responses is the only survival tool the parent of a difficult child child has.

    That, and knowing that the grandchildren are safe.

  14. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I enjoy reading your posts Barbara, you have an interesting, thoughtful, kind way of sharing yourself.

    As things progress with your house guest and your daughter, more may evolve that can't be seen now.......The recent developments in your life, as well as what goes on here in my world, make me think of this Sufi story I read many years ago. Here it is:

    You are very wise.
    Maybe yes, maybe no.
    Most of us are quick to judge, and quick judgments are often wrong. I love this story from long ago about a farmer who practiced Sufism (wisdom) — he was a Sufi master.
    In the ancient land where this farmer lived, a family’s wealth was measured by how many horses it had, because more horses meant more fields could be plowed to grow food. This old Sufi master had one horse, and one day the horse got out of the corral and ran away. His neighbor observed this and said, “Oh, that’s bad.” The farmer smiled and said … “Maybe yes, maybe no.” Three days later, the farmer’s horse returned leading 15 wild horses into the corral, and the farmer closed the gate. The farmer’s neighbor came over and with amazement said, “Wow, now you have 16 horses. That’s great.” To this, the farmer replied, “Maybe yes, maybe no.”
    The horses had to be trained, so he had his only son, who was 17, begin training them. One day, the son took a hard fall and broke his leg. When the neighbor heard this, he said, “You’re unlucky.” The farmer replied, “Maybe yes, maybe no.” The next day some soldiers rode up to the farm and told the farmer that the country was under attack and all able-bodied young men must enlist into the Army immediately. The soldier in command looked at the master and his son and said, “You’re too old and you’re injured,” and the soldiers rode off. When the neighbor heard this, he said, “You’re lucky.” The farmer responded, “Maybe yes, maybe no.”
    Sufism (wisdom)
    is considered a pathway to truth.
    The judgments we make aren’t always truths.
    But by thinking them, they may become our false truth.

  15. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    Oh, this is excellent, Recovering. Thank you so much for posting it for me. Such a simple phrase, so easy to remember ~ something to stop the spiral, whether into hope or toward the negative.

    Maybe yes, maybe no.

    The judgments we make aren't always truths.
    But by thinking them, they may become our false truths.

    That little phrase, "maybe yes, maybe no," stops the internal chatter.

    I am glad to have this tool, Recovering. difficult child comes home, today.

    The houseguest called last night from one of the airport terminals, just to let us know he had safely made it that far. He seemed happy, trusting, caring. Not at all the kind of action you would expect from someone practicing nefarious intent.

    Maybe yes, maybe no...right?

    I am going to post that on the fridge.


    In rereading this after I posted it, I realize that little phrase, "maybe yes, maybe no," is a perfect introduction to the skill of detachment. It cools the emotions.

    ***Most of us are quick to judge. And quick judgments are often wrong.***

    Interesting to note that I am reading Brene Brown Daring Greatly this morning.

    Last edited: Aug 7, 2013
  16. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    I just tell myself there is always the "bigger picture" that I'm not always privy to knowing what is going on. Sometimes I get to see the results later down the road........and often they're quite interesting. But it stops the worry and allows me to let it go.

    Each of us has our own lives to live, our own experiences (good or bad) to teach us the lessons we need to learn in order to be the person we're meant to be and do the job we're meant to do in our lives. Not everyone's path was meant to be easy to walk.
  17. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I was sort of thinking that this man did decide this and announce it in a rather bad way. It would have been better manners to discuss this with you first but then again, they are both well past the age of consent. Personally I think I would have had my father's head examined if he had done this when he was 75...lol. It was hard enough when I found out he was dating-then married-my mother's best friend.

    But really what can you do about it? Nothing. You say this man is in good health both physically and mentally so what he does is of his own free will. Maybe your daughter has a daddy complex and will do well with an older man. Maybe this man needs a younger woman to keep him feeling young. Who knows. Basically...maybe good, maybe bad. Only time will tell. One thing that can never be said is that he didnt know what he was getting into.

    I will be hoping for the best.
  18. scent of cedar

    scent of cedar New Member

    Hi, Skotti :O)

    Believe it or not, I was just thinking about you, this morning. I had decided to post an "anyone heard from Skotti" post.

    Hope things are going well?

  19. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Barbara, I'm doing something I've only done perhaps once or twice before, I'm re-reading Daring Greatly........it has so much to offer and I am in the right frame of mind to receive that information right now. I've been so wrapped up in the drama of my daughter and my family for a few years now, that I have not been "daring greatly" and it feels as if life is calling me back in to the arena.............not sure exactly what that means, it's just a feeling at this point..........

    When I was in the codependency recovery group and therapy, we often discussed judgment and the place that had in the world of mental illness and substance abuse. I always found those discussions so fascinating. Many years ago I attended a lecture on Spirituality and Buddhism. The speaker quoted a line from a book on Buddhism which I've always remembered, he said, "the great way is open to those who have no preferences." He said he had been pondering that for many years because it had so many layers of thought. I have now been pondering that for many years and this process with my daughter has brought me to a new understanding of that quote. Much like the 'maybe yes, maybe no' of the Sufi story............I ask myself, how real are my judgments, my preferences, my assessments, my evaluations? So much of it is learned, taught,........ what we end up just thinking because it's what we've always thought. Like that bumper sticker says, "don't believe everything you think." My difficult child broke all of that down for me..........I've had to change much of my own thinking and look at her with different eyes. Eyes not glazed over by my fear and judgment, angers and disappointments, sorrow and resentments............as you so aptly stated, oy fricken vey................what a ride.............

    There is another quote, by Rumi--

    "out beyond ideas of wrongdoing
    and rightdoing there is a field
    I'll meet you there."

    Perhaps that's the field where we will meet our daughters,.......... someday.

    Last edited: Aug 7, 2013
  20. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Oh I am here...lol. I have been dealing with some family issues but I am hopeful that with youngest back to working in another state, things will go back to settling down. Hubby is now working out of town during the week so its just me and my oldest son here at the house during the week. I have found that I am now sleeping better even though I am posting this early today. I had a bad dream and couldnt go back to sleep so I decided to jump on here. Im also trying to get used to a new laptop and Windows 8 which is about to drive me batty...lol. Im not sure I have the brain power to learn this thing.