May. 16th, 2004 07:42 pm
lsdiamond: (Default)
Well...we're here, in more or less one piece. The trip was a disaster. Over 18 hours of driving - should have been no more than 14 hours.

Friday, we got finished packing the van around 7:00 pm, then went to to meet Scooter at the Western Inn for one last conversation over coffee. We pretty much just talked about Neverwinter Nights, getting our systems up on Linux, and good old geeky stuff. +Kyle and I had dinner of omelettes. Their Denver omelette is pretty darn good. Two hours and 6 or 7 cups of coffee later (and that was just me), it was time to say goodbye. It was quick...but it couldn't have been any other way. We stood and held each other for probably too long, although I don't think either of us really wanted to let go. He shook +Kyle's hand, then pulled him into a hug, and went to his car, saying he'd see us around.

I didn't even make it to the truck before breaking down. +Kyle put his arm around me as we walked and finally said, "If you want to stay, this is your last chance."

"The van is packed."

"That doesn't matter."

I think I just shook my head...I don't even remember if I said anything. I just got in the truck and we drove out, and took the highway up toward I-40. I can't remember the last time I cried so hard.

In doing this, I realize...or at least think I do...that leaving must be the right thing to do...because it was so damn hard. It's almost never truly easy to do the right thing. Not really. Even for so-called "good people". If it's easy...if it doesn't hurt...require some it really right? I've been called a martyr for saying things like this, but isn't it true, really? Staying would have been selfish...a hell of a lot easier than leaving, especially after the fight we'd had earlier that day...but selfish nonetheless. Is thinking like this being lost in self-pity? I don't think's just one of those things that keeps popping up.

I know that, had I stayed, a life would have been available. They'd have welcomed me back at the Record. I'd have had friends. I'd have gone to school - maybe not for the language, but MSC had some courses I'd have been interested in, and Ms. Coulter seemed like such a wonderful teacher. I'd have kept going to New Beginnings, and gotten involved with the people of that church. Most importantly to me, I'd have had a family - maybe not by blood, but certainly by agape.

So I just prayed. I took something Don said a few weeks ago, and prayed to be like Jabez. My name may not be a cursed name, and there are millions of people with harder lives than mine, but I asked blessing. I asked that this decision to leave behind that which I want, for sake of ease and all the rest, this decision to stay with +Kyle, knowing that the healing needed is going to take time and hard work and many many unpleasant be blessed. I'm not doing it FOR blessings. I made the decision to stick by him because it seems the right thing to do. But I asked them anyway, because I am so tired of being sad...of hurting... I don't think it's wrong of me to ask this, because Jabez did, and God blessed him just for asking.

I also asked Him not to make me wait too long for real happiness.

Somewhere around Vian, OK, (midnightish?) we stopped for a break at a Phillips 66. I went inside, got cleaned up from crying so much, and then went for coffee. Some cop had just finished at the counter, and he and the guy were talking. I got something like a 16 oz. cup, and went up to pay for it. The guy at the counter was probably around 45, maybe 6 ft. tall, greying, wearing jeans and a white t-shirt with a Harley logo. "Traveling?"

"Yep...long, long drive..."

He just looked at me for a second, then said, "Are you a biker? Leather...all the black...chain wallet..." He smiled.

"No...this is just me..." I smiled a little.

I pulled out the wallet, and tried to pay, but he said, "Just take the coffee. You look like you need it."

I smiled a little more, thanked him, and left. That little exchange really blessed me. More than just the coffee, it was an element of caring that you don't see very often. I wish I'd gotten his name - I would have liked to send a note. I can't find a Phillips 66 actually IN Vian...the closest one listed in the yellow pages is about 8 miles away. I pray many many blessings in return for him.

We had planned on getting to Little Rock before stopping, but I wore out way too early. We only made it to Clarksville, which is about 100 miles west of Little Rock. We found a Super 8, and stopped for the night. The shower was nice.

We passed a place called Toad Suck, Arkansas shortly thereafter. We've passed it several times, of course, but I've never remembered to mention it until now. We crossed a bridge at one point, and there was a sign for Lotahwatah Road. There are way too many bridges on this drive.

I made about 12 mix tapes for the trip - only listened to about half of them, because I torture myself with depressing music when I'm already depressed. Maybe I'll post the playlist. Maybe not.

We left out around 11:00 the next day. Things went pretty smoothly until Mayflower, Arkansas...or actually about 7 miles out from it. It was about noon by then. Traffic stood at a complete halt up until just past the exit for Mayflower. We were in line for an hour.

Now, about a mile out from the exit, we saw a nasty wreck in the westbound lane. There was a trooper in the eastbound lane, but he wasn't the problem. Underneath the overpass at Mayflower, there was another cop keeping things slowed down for no apparant reason. Immediately past that, traffic picked up again.

Anyway, we got off at Mayflower because I needed petrol badly, and were there for probably half an hour because they were having trouble with EVERYTHING...the debit machine...the pumps...everything. The lady said it was her first day working alone, and everything that had could go wrong had - they had even run out of gasoline once already that day. (I'm not surprised, with all the people WAITING for AN HOUR...)

I called Nancy and the 'rents to tell them where we were and how far behind things were. Nancy sounded glad to hear from us.

So we drove and drove, and got to Memphis around 4:30 or 5:00. I hate that bridge. I hate it in the dark. I hate it even worse in the daytime.

Memphis was the seventh circle of hell. There is NO exit marked for Highway 72. We miss that exit every time we get off I-40. Every time. Even when we have directions. This time we got really lost, except for that we remembered that the road name was a tree...Pecan or Poplar...we were sure it started with a 'P'. Eventually we stopped and got directions, then happened upon Poplar. Problem was we turned West instead of East. So we got turned around, and of course by now, Rush Hour was REALLY going, so it was about 6:30 before we even got OUT of Memphis. I have to keep telling myself to stop looking at little maroon cars.

Somewhere in Memphis, while stopped at one of the million or so stoplights, I saw a store called Dan West Christmas Supplies. Their little slogan was, "When it comes to Christmas...go West..." I don't know why, but it was of interest at the time.

That was the most harrowing part, and I really got to the point of not being able to control myself. Could not stop crying. +Kyle kept getting on the radio and asking where we should be turning, etc., and of course I have no idea, so that just made me crazier. I was pretty rude, screaming at him and such... I plead temporary insanity. I told him I wasn't ready to make this move. I told him I couldn't handle it, that my nerves were already shot to hell and that I really needed to wait a few more weeks to settle down.

But anyway... In Germantown, we pulled over, and +Kyle basically told me that I just had to pull myself together and keep going. Maybe I needed it, but at the time I definitely didn't want to hear it. He went off and called the 'rents and his mom to tell them what was going on, we got some drinks and went on.

Somewhere in Mississippi we stopped again at a little gas station to fill up. Some kid who looked about 12 came out of the store holding a root beer, then got into a green VW beetle (his shirt matched), backed out, and drove back behind the station, to some housing in the back. The guy who runs the store came out, saw me gawking, and said, "Don't be surprised when you see things like that around here." I guess the kid really was about 12. He looked like a sandy blonde Daniel Radcliffe...Harry Potter glasses and everything.

The clerk said we had another 3-1/2 to 4 hours drive to the Huntsville area. I called the Scotts again - Jim answered this time - to let them know we would be getting in FAR later than anticipated and didn't want to bother them when we got in, instead. He sounded glad to hear from me, too, and wished us well.

The rest of the drive was pretty uneventful...just long...

We got to Athens right around 10:30. Found the house with little difficulty. It's a nice place. Hardwood floors. Basement. Probably about 1200 sq. ft. It's a steal, really, at $350 a month.

I've got to find a job. I was really hoping to be able to take a break, but even if +Kyle gets this job tomorrow, it's not going to pay the bills, much less get us caught up. He's talking about getting a second job, too, but we need fun money, too, or we're going to go insane. There are way many movies this summer that will not be worthy unless seen on the big screen. We would like to bowl more regularly, go skating, etc., take Ian, the boys, and probably Logan out some. Need to get out with Gamegod and Geekgrrl...etc.

Oh well... It's late, and that's pretty much the whole trip, so...for now, goodnight.


May. 14th, 2004 03:05 am
lsdiamond: (Default)
I realize it's probably a good thing that Scooter is not online tonight... I can't be emotionally dependent on someone who isn't around. It would be comforting, but also painful.

+Kyle is driving me absolutely bonkers, though. He keeps asking me what's wrong. It hasn't changed - I don't want to move, but I am going to anyway. I told him I'd work through this with him, that I'd be with him no matter what. He's moving, so that means I have to as well. He says I'm not trying to make this work. How can I tell him about my inner battle? I may have had to force down emotional attachment from Scooter, but I *do* still love him. Just because he's not going to be around doesn't mean he'll be gone from my mind or my heart right away.

I wish that the idea of seeing everyone again was comforting or even happy, but it's not. All I can see right now is that I am leaving a lot of people I love dearly behind...especially one.

+Kyle wrote this immense letter today outlining that he wants to be everything for much so that I never even think of another man. He wants me to smile about him like he does about me. Having little more than compassion for +Kyle right now, that's not a thought that seems feasible. It doesn't sound pleasant. It feels like going back to prison after being pardoned from a life sentence. Isn't that a horrible way for me to feel?

I want to do the right thing...apparantly that is to stay with +Kyle and work my ass off for the next however many years. But at the same time, I see my reasons to smile being left behind. Perhaps I will find old ones again in Alabama. Perhaps new, what with school coming up...although I think I'm going to have to put it off because +Kyle keeps reminding me how much debt we already have. -_- I really don't want to do that, because if I don't go back now, I may never go back.

For +Kyle's sake, I'm hopeful that these strong emotions will fade over time, but I'm also fearful that they will. No one *wants* to hurt, but I am afraid that one day I will find I don't miss him that much, and the pain inside me even now will cease. What happens in that case? What if he still misses me? Or what if he finds he doesn't miss me so much anymore, either? What if he finds someone else? I would be happy for him...but would I not also feel a sense of loss? He says he doesn't want anyone else...but life tends to throw things at us when we least expect it. I have to keep that possibility in mind. He is strong, but can he last that long? Will he grow weary? Will loneliness overtake him? Bitterness? I hope not. I have given him yet another hypocrite to despise, yet he does not see it, or at least, has not acknowledged it to me.
lsdiamond: (Default)
We got up rather late (9-ish) and went to church shortly thereafter. Mainly it was a ceremony to honor mothers, being Mother's Day.

So afterward, we came back to the house, grabbed a quick lunch (bratwurst & salad), and Scooter came by about half an hour earlier than we expected, so we ran around and left out shortly after 1:00.

The drive to Sherman is interminable going the back roads, because there is just nothing to look at. Trees. Sign. Trees. Grass. Trees. Grass. Bridge. Grass. Cows. Grass. Cows. Sign. Grass. Grass. Cow. Barn. Sign. Grass. Cows. Trees. Grass. McDonald's. Then you meet Hwy 82, and you're basically there.

So we got tickets for the 4:00 showing of Van Helsing, then bummed around the mall for awhile. +Kyle had a nosebleed shortly after we arrived.

Really, all we did was play in the arcade. I did pod racing, but the screen is going out, so it wasn't a very successful run. +Kyle found an awesome game that senses your movement - you're a member of the Japanese police, and you go in, taking out the yakuza (Japanese mafia). Very very cool. If you duck, the viewpoint ducks. Hide behind a wall, likewise. Stand up to fire, etc. It's really awesome. They need it in Huntsville if they don't have it already. Can't remember what it was called, though. Scooter very nearly beat Soul Caliber. On the very last guy, in the very last battle, the enemy overtook him with a series of devastating blows. He said it was the closest he's ever come to beating it without using any Continues. ^_^ After that, he challenged us each to air hockey. +Kyle won 7-6, in a very long match. The puck flew off the table several times. My game wasn't nearly as long, but I still did pretty well - 7-6, but Scooter won that time. My weak spot is the right side of the goal, and I didn't guard it very well.

After playing, it was getting close enough to 4:00 that we decided to head toward the theatre. We got there about 10 'til, and the place was pretty much packed. Our seats were in the front row of the stadium area, which is placed *about* as far back as we like to sit, so they were decent.

Van Helsing - possible spoilers ahead )

After the film, we went for Chinese at China Star. It was of course quite good. It's no Formosa, and hopefully one of these days we can show our friend what REAL Chinese tastes like...but it was still good. We made small talk...largely about the movie.

by now it was about 7:30, and thus far too early to think about calling it a night, so we decided to go back through Durant and do the Sunday night bowling deal. It didn't start until 10, so we put our names on the list - lane 16 - the first lane we ever played. Since it was rather early yet, we went for coffee at the Waffle Shoppe. I don't remember much of the conversation...just enjoyed the company. I know 80s cartoons were discussed at some point. Probably plans for the future. Reminiscence... I tried not to think about the fact that this was our last outing.

So...Bowling! On Sundays, it's a $5 cover (shoes included), and each game is a quarter.
We can play four games in two hours, so this turned out to be a good deal. We still never broke 400, but it was a lot of fun. Scooter & I split a pitcher again, but I didn't get nearly as blitzed as last time. :P That's probably the last time I'll be combining alcohol and any kind of publicly recreational activity, simply because +Kyle only drinks the really dark beers. Maybe if Des comes along, or if we go anywhere with Gamegod and Geekgrrl. Ian's not old enough yet.

The place shut down around midnight, so since I had to be at work later, we figured it was a good idea to get back to Madill. It seems like the ride home was pretty quiet. Bridges were discussed. At some point in the evening, Scooter informed us that the Roosevelt Bridge between Kingston and Durant sways, and he had had to stop on it one time (due to traffic, I think), and noticed it then. Once again, I am not looking forward to the one over the Mississippi on I-40. I always dread bridges of any sort, anyway, but that one is just...yikes... +Kyle jokingly said he was going to cross it and I could follow him or not, but I don't think he realizes just how much they scare me. Worse than high places. Upon a Googling, I find the term to be "gephyrophobia", and that it is a fairly common fear. Meh. Doesn't make me not have to drive over it!

Overall, it was a great day. I can't believe how much I'm going to miss these outings with our illustrious friend - even when he's on a down cycle. Yes, we'll do similar activities with friends in Alabama...I'm really trying to look forward to that...but this especially hurts.


May. 11th, 2004 06:54 pm
lsdiamond: (Default)
Nancy finished my costume. It's hella cool, and absolutely incredible work. We had one last fitting before she hemmed the bottom of the bodice, and we just sat and talked about miscellany for about an hour. We talked a little about the move, but not much, and it's a good thing.

Anyway, pictures will be forthcoming. I made the cloak, and it's pretty good. It flows beautifully - am considering lining it with a red metallic flecked material that I just love, but it won't flow the same if I do, so I'm going to have to try a small piece of the two materials first.

Jim came in a couple of times - they're taking a vacation somewhere this summer, and he was getting a place reserved. Their whole family gets together for *everything*. It's pretty cool. ^_^

Leaving was hard. I managed to not break up until after driving off, but after that was the end. I'm going to miss them so much, especially Nancy. I finally realized who she reminds me of so much...Kathy...

And lastly, some fitting words from Chobits...

"Oh, no, I’m fine. I only feel like an angel who was sitting on cloud 9, playing my harp without a care in the world, when all of a sudden, my wings were ripped off, sending me plummeting down to hell and the sulfurous Abyss of Pure Misery." - Hideki
lsdiamond: (Default)
Work was long. I have so much to do and no time in which to do it. Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, I will probably end up working late just to do the *usual* tasks, and I still have the end-of-month jobs to do from April. The graduation and Sand Bass festival tabloids have been taking up ALL of my normally spare time for the past few weeks. Today was much the same.

After work, we went to the MSC graduation ceremony. +Kyle really doesn't know why he decided to walk, but I'm glad he did. We got there, and he got changed into his robe and hat, then wandered off to find the other graduates so they could get into formation and all. I wandered into the crowded field to find a seat, preferably with friends. I walked right past Micah and another girl. They were with some guy and his son, and I *think* Susan's son. Can't remember any of their names, but I've seen them around.

Micah yelled, and I turned, realizing who had been there the whole time, and so I sat with them. I had taken the folding recliner, since that's the only portable chair we had. Micah was incredulous at how cool it was, and I traded chairs with her, because it's really more of a gaming chair than a sit-down-at-an-event-and-try-not-to-fall-asleep chair.

Shavonn came up shortly thereafter, and sat with all of us, too. Mike and Lydia were almost directly behind us - just a few seats over to the left. Roger's girlfriend and I guess his parents (or maybe it was Jeff's parents) sat with them, too, so I saw a lot of people right off the bad. Alan came up from somewhere and said hi, but Rodney is out of money, and therefore out of gas, so he wasn't around. Bummer! Guess I won't be getting his autograph after all. :P That kid is going to be famous someday.

Anyway, Micah was talking on her cellphone, so I chatted with Mike and Alan for a few. Nancy was graduating, so we were proud of her for that. Lydia was working in the cafeteria, so I didn't actually see her right away. Scooter wandered up after awhile, but the ceremony was about to start so he sat with the rest of us.

The ceremony was pretty good. It was outdoors, and a simply gorgeous day, although it was probably murderously hot for the grads, in their polyester robes. :P Dr. Peterson (the president) is leaving MSC, for a more important job in...Ohio?...being a grandfather. He spoke for a minute, introduced much of the faculty, and then another fellow, Kermit McMurray, I think, got up to speak. He had some pretty good things to say, but he's not a public speaker by any stretch of the imagination. The whole concept was staying educated for your whole life, and learning to do the things that are right over what you want to do. Self-sacrifice, morality and what's wrong with the nation (i.e., poverty, illness, etc.), and what we can do to help these things. It was supposed to be motivational, but it was so long, and he so overly verbose (Frasier gots nothing on this guy!) that the meaning was lost.

After that, I think Dr. Peterson got back up and they started calling names of people to get their degrees. I got some pictures of Nancy, JoAnna, +Kyle, and VJ, of course, who was the only reason I wanted to go until I found out +Kyle had decided to walk as well. I'm really proud of her for finally getting her degree. She's been going to school off and on for something like the last 15 years. I'm proud of +Kyle, too. The past two years have been a real struggle, and it's good to see some of the fruits of his labors...mine, too, I guess.

Close to the end, Tamica was called, and more people cheered for her than for anyone else. Everyone loves her, and she has been at every event that I can recall being at. She's great, and I wish I'd gotten to know her more personally than just hi-howya-doin'?

Afterward, we all split up to find our respective friends to congratulate them. I went where +Kyle *had* been sitting, thinking I'd catch him before he got too far, but he had vanished, as had VJ, so I wandered around, finding Joanna and Roger first, and then I saw +Kyle, and made my way over there. We went around together and found several people to congratulate, especially VJ. We found Mike, and he said to meet him and Lydia at his apartment because they were going to [ profile] bitchness' afterward. Wai! Awesome Heather! ^_^

+Kyle stopped to talk to Dr. Peterson for a minute, and we talked to Debbie Combs, who congratulated us on the move and told us to come back and visit. We found Susan Branch, who nearly cried, but said she wouldn't. We're especially going to miss her - she's done so very much for us since day one. If I were going to work at a college, I would want her kind of job, because she's involved with the students right from the start. She also told us we need to come back and visit.

A lot of people are telling us this. I hope it's not long before we come back to see everyone.

Anyway, I ran to get some more water in the library, and +Kyle went to the truck so we could get out. We hadn't been able to find Joanna all evening, but fortunately her parents' van was parked out quite near our truck, so we got to see her after all. ^_^

+Kyle found a rose somewhere - dropped or lost, no doubt, but he gave it to me. ^_^ I always thought I didn't care about things like that - insignificant in the great scheme of things...but when you're in that moment, and it's the sweetest thing imaginable... Yeah, I like those cheesy romantic-type things. It's strange having them come from +Kyle, because he's so...unemotional... It's hard to say how I feel about it.

So we went to Mike's apartment, and talked with him and Lydia for about 20 minutes while [ profile] bitchness cleaned up her house some. Mike has a white rat named Sniff, rescued from the Vet Tech program this semester. They don't simply destroy the animals that are used in the program, but he didn't want to see her wind up as someone's dissection exercise, either. She is pretty cute - probably average rat size, not one of the big ugly nasty ones.

Anyway, after those few minutes, we followed them to [ profile] bitchness' house. We just sat and chatted about not much of anything in particular for awhile. I guess Mike and Lydia stayed about an hour. +Kyle and I weren't exactly sure what to do, being that we were guests of guests, but we like [ profile] bitchness, too, so we stayed another hour or so. We talked about politics, movies, music, and that kind of thing. She's getting ready to move in a few weeks, too - Seattle.

Don't remember when we left or got back to the house, but it was late, and we were up later, because we slept WAY in Saturday...

More on Saturday...later!


May. 4th, 2004 05:45 pm
lsdiamond: (Default)
May 15th...

+Kyle wants to be leaving Oklahoma next weekend.

Words escape me...I never wanted to love this place...but now I don't want to leave.

...the mere thought of leaving has been tearing me apart inside for a long time.

...the realization that it is about to happen hasn't fully hit yet. I'm afraid of what's going to happen when it does.

+Kyle is driving me insane. He wants to be all comforting, but it's not working. I let him try, but I'm still numb to him a lot of the time. Maybe this time it's because he's the cause of the hurt. I know it's not intentional - he wants to do whatever's best for the both of us. But that doesn't make it hurt any less. It doesn't make me want to let him try to help me...quite the opposite. When you get burned, you pull your hand out of the fire...not roll around in it.

What happened to waiting to move until I was a little more stable, mentally and emotionally? What happened to him working here until we had the money to move on our own? He says it's because he has a good job opportunity. Guy won't hire him over the phone. I am really uncomfortable with this whole "Well, it looks good, but he wants to talk to me in person" thing. I told +Kyle two weeks ago when I agreed to stay until he finished school that I wasn't leaving this state until he had a job lined up FOR CERTAIN, and a place to stay. Maybe it's a test of faith, but it's really hard to trust *anyone* right now, especially someone who has been so manipulative and so hurtful for so long. All I can see is one more case of him making a decision FOR us and it's hurting. I hope I can look back at some point and realize that it wasn't really like that, but from this side........

I want to cry, but I have been pretty much all day, so I'm tired...but I'm also jittery because I've been into the coffee at work all day. Not smart in my current condition, but...I don't care about much of anything right now.

So anyway, I told Mark & Sherry that +Kyle was ready to go, and they said the 12th should be my last day. I can't even give them a two week notice. They haven't been the greatest of bosses I've had, but they've been wonderful, and I feel like eleven kinds of awful for not being allowed this courtesy.

Called Nancy this afternoon. She said she should have everything finished in plenty of time. I said it was okay if she didn't, because everything fits right, and I don't mind paying to have it shipped if she can't get to it. But she's sure she will, so with any luck, this weekend we'll have it done. She was sorry we won't get to play in her garden together this summer. I am, too. She wished us well. I thanked her and Jim for being so great to us - so much like family.

Am trying to look forward to this weekend, but knowing it's the last time we're going to see so many dear friends (at least until we come back for a visit, and who knows when that will be?) is making that very hard.

Am also feeling bad that I am not looking forward to seeing everyone as much as it seems like I should. Yeah, I miss Ian and the rest of the family, Gamegod & Geekgrrl, Desireah, Logan, and all the rest...I don't really understand this right now.

Thank you, Niki, for the hug today. I love you, too.

...and yes...I'm aware that this is just another whinefest... Here, have some cheese, too...

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