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Sunday, July 29, 2018

While the Kitten Is Away

It feels quiet....a little lonely, even. I'm at Joyist, the new name for Juice Culture on Valley Road. Sitting here with a small organic yogurt bowl and a cold brew/soy milk/banana smoothie.

I have been pretty much doing everything except the reading and writing my OA sponsor has suggested. Yup, that's the truth. But I brought it with me, and now that I told you that, I will do some now.

I walked to Mass, Rose Gold laptop in my totebag. I stopped in the General Store at Cornerstone Montclair. I bought Fig vegan ice cream there and brought it to her at work.

Dan is driving back today from his annual summer get-together with several college buddies......I'm going out to a Greek restaurant at 5 with my friend/sitter Elaine.

Random notes:
  • I hope and pray that our Punchy is enjoying camp. I know they walk to "chapel" on Sundays. It sounds so nice. Dan, Fig and I have all written letters, and I sent her with stamps and paper and envelopes, but we haven't gotten any mail yet.
  • I've had time to process my feelings about Punchy's birth mom, and they are not good. She has lately put more demands on us to see Punch, and that means we drive the little brunetti 3 hours round trip each way, as the family never has wheels. Punchy's birth mom does not read my blog. So may I say, why can't she get on a bus? 
  • I missed Punch at Mass. 
  • I didn't blog last night because I went out with Anne and Elly and then retreated to bed to read Shape Magazine from cover to cover. I bought the June issue but had never read it. That issue went back and forth with me to Cape Cod, Maine and Vermont. Now I tore out a recipe for Lemon-Turmeric Energy Bites, except I'm not using the turmeric. That leaves: raw cashews, raw almonds, pitted dates, lemon juice, vanilla extract, ground ginger and lemon zest. You flatten the balls into cookie shapes. 
  • I wanted to weed more, but I haven't yet. It weighs me down, all that weeding that awaits. It grows so rapidly. My nails get dirty. 
  • Tomorrow is busy, with an appt., an article interview and article writing. 
  • Punchy's friend's Dad didn't say hi to me at Mass, maybe he didn't see me, but I don't know if that's possible. I hope Punchy didn't get in trouble somehow with the family....aren't I a worrier...
Well, let me do some of that reading now. Enjoy your day. :)


  1. Wow, that round trip is a big chunk of weekend. Sounds like you need a sensible boundary in place, like you will make the drive once monthly, then stick to it. I would also send Punch on errands that involve the local bus so she can take herself as soon as possible. Very sweet that you are missing her. Good luck with work today, I am going to be busy too.

  2. Hi Liz. I hope it was clear that I meant Mom should get on a bus, not Punch. And monthly would be too much. We are court-appointed legal guardians and not under any obligations, as we were when foster parents. I worry about the safety. I'm sure it is confusing because I often can't write directly about sensitive issues. thank you . xxoAlice

  3. Hey, I think that you all do more than enough for her mom... Her mom needs to step up and catch the bus or train. I understand what she is trying to do, now that number 2 came along... I understand that she wants to do better with her daughter, but she needs to meet you half way. You have already given her support... But your life isn't suppose to change because her life has...

    1. I agree. Thank you I’m tired of working so hard to raise Punch and then being expected to honor someone else as her mother when that person never thanks or honors me.

  4. Jumping in with my 2 cents here. Yes, boundaries. Birth Mom (BM) is difficult, no doubt and you def need to set them. And you don't get NEARLY ENOUGH honor in this little muddle as you should (though you known you get endless amounts here from our little blog club, but I digress).

    Not sure at all how often is enough or necessary for Punch to see BM both by law or by Punch's needs or your sensibility. And I know you're getting better counsel than I could give from the therapists involved in the situation on all sides. But it sounds like BM continues to have some kind of role, albeit undeserved. With that in mind, I think Liz's thoughts on Punchy taking the bus deserve a second look. First of all, she is way too young now, no doubt, but it's helpful to think about the future and how you can ease yourself and the littlle brunette into it. She's 10, right? In 5 years she's 15. Very feasible to consider her taking a bus and navigating her way down there around then or during late teen years. Now maybe you wish to ease her out of BM relationship but it doesn't sound like it. You've been so respectful of it and more than kind. So that being said, maybe it is worth contemplating how you let Punchy take over the relationship one day on her own. Which , after all, is how it will be, right whether you plan for it or not. And, you know what, Punchy learning how to navigate a bus on her own during the next 5 years is a skill worth knowing no matter how the chips fall on this issue.

    I remember Liz and I once saying to each other solemnly when the kids were around 8.... 8 to 18, we gotta get 'em to 8 to 18. Best done gradually and with as little surprises to us all.

    Such a hard path, Alice, I'm honored you continue to share your bumps and feelings with us. As always, pass on our unasked for advice! I think the main message is there is a light at the end of this tunnel with Punchy and her BM.

  5. and when I say PUnch learning to navigate a bus in the next 5 years, I'm with Liz. Like the local bus for little chores or to make her way to the library or somthing. If this sounds like a lot, remember I come from the vantage point of my kids learning the NYC subway at 11 LOL!

  6. Hi! Not sure who anonymous is here? It could be Nan? or my friend Heidi? Or Candy? Or Anne? IDK. Anyway, thank you all for the thoughtful notes, and for caring. It means a lot to me. It is a tough situation to navigate. I guess I should clarify, there is no direct bus. It is a bus to NYC port authority and then the bus to Montclair. I still feel the journey should be made by the other participant. And Punchy is soooo independent already. I occasionally let her bike into town by herself, which is ahead of the curve compared to her friends. But then, since she started school at age 6 1/2, she is 11 and her fellow incoming fifth grade friends are 10. Kim, I never thought about her going alone but you are right, when she is a teen--I guess. Again, I worry about the safety of the situation and cannot go into detail here on this public blog...and I mean the safety, mainly, of the destination. We are not under obligation to do regular visits. At the final hearing, the idea was that Mother's Day might be a good day to do it every year....that's what the professional leading the group said....anyway, this will be an ongoing web/pickle/challenge. I am trying to do right by Punchy and her birth mom but also by myself. xoxoxo Alice

  7. Ah, makes much more sense now, your reservations about the trip (many buses), the stay. And, that you are only obligated to do it once a year but that ther is pressure from BM (and prob Punch, too, to do it more). This is tricky. Wishing you the best as you navigate a really difficult situation.

    1. Thank you my friend. As we know, corn 🌽, and life, can be tricky. Xo