Why are these tulips (tulips with two lips!!) and this mushroom so happy? Well, first of all, today is an absolutely gorgeous day which was MUCH needed after many days of cloudy gloominess.
But mostly this happiness is in relation to the return of our dear friend, my partner, Tim, after a separation of five months.
Tim and I's Story
Tim and I first met while I was living in Wyoming in 2004. Ari was just over a year old and I was a small, young, lonely, unknowledgable single mother in the center of the least populated state in the country. Although I was living on a college campus in the second biggest city in Wyoming, I did not make any friends. My second semester at Casper College, I met a guy named Phil. He was kind to me and was the first person that I considered a 'friend' in the entire 9 months that I had lived there to that point. In April, there was a Keller Williams concert that I wanted to go to in Fort Collins, Colorado. I asked Phil if he wanted to go. He said he couldn't but that his brother might want to. I met his brother, Tim, for the very first time when I picked him up and, along with my brother, drove to Fort Collins for the concert. Well, it turns out that none of us thought to get tickets ahead of time, and after the four hour drive, the show was sold out. So isntead we went to a party at one of TIm's old friends' houses in Cheyenne where I felt quite uncomfortable. Several weeks went by before I talked to Tim again. I was plannign on moving back to Illinois, but I didn't want to (and my mommy wouldn't let me) drive my big van all the way across the country by myself. So I asked Phil, "Hey, would you like to take a free trip to Illinois and help me drive?" And again his answer was "No, but my brother might". So I began hanging out with Tim and a relationship quickly developed. Ari loved him from the very beginning. Tim would show up at my apartment door and Ari would happily cry out "Na!!" (pronounced like 'nah'). We never knew why he called him Na, since he was already very articulate at that age (about 16 months) and had no trouble with "T"'s. But the name stuck, and to this day, he is still "Na" or "Nanni" (pronounced "nah-nee) to us. Anyway, Na decided he move to Illinois with us.
And there begins the next chapter in our story. We lived together in Illinois, upgrading houses a couple times, for about a year and a half before deciding to go our separate ways. Ari and I moved to a new house by ourselves just as he was turning 3 in 2006. Things went okay; I was lonely, but also liberated in so many ways. I had convinced myself that it was best for me to be on my own for a while, until IT happened. It was the summer of 2006, and something quite serious and frightening happened. I'm not going to go into the details here, but we were living way out of town, sort of secluded when it occurred---- a stalker incident of sorts. It was getting pretty scary, and it got to the point that we were not safe. The final, scariest occurance happened the very day before we were to go on vacation to my mom's in Wyoming. So I packed
what I could, we went to Wyoming and stayed for over a month. When we finally came back to Illinois, we lived at a friend's house for almost two months while waiting for a decent house to open up. We finally found what we thought was a good home, and Na came back to help us out. He came on the pretense that we were just going to be friends and that he would stay until I got licensed as a Home Child Care Provider and could support myself financially. Our friendship developed again into a relationship, and the house that we thought was nice, turned out not to be and the landlady lived a thousand miles away and refused to do any necessary work to the house. We asked her to check for mold under the house (I'm sure it was there) and she said she would not and asked us to move out. It was around Christmas time, and in A University town, where most leaves begin and end in August, there were very few rental homes open. I was very upset and overwhelmed, but things worked out,as they always do, and we found a nice big home (bigger and nicer than any other we'd lived in-- and for not too much more $$ than the previous house). There were more than half a dozen families wanting this house. We had many things working against us. I had dreadlocks (a major stigma unfortunately). We were a three person family; the house had 4 bedrooms and 2 big living areas and several of the familys had 3 or more children, so theoretically they were in need of the space more than us. And then there was the liability issue of me running a home child care in the house. Despite all this, we connected with the owners and they chose us to be the house's tenants. They are such wonderful people. So kind and supportive. I am so thankful for them after having several landlord nightmares. Anyway, eventually the child care business was going well and Tim and I began making plans to go our separate ways again. He moved back to Wyoming last November. During that time, neither of us were happy, and I was not making enough money to support Ari and I. After a few months, we began theortically talking about what would happen if he were to move back in with us. After weeks of contemplation, we both decided that did want to be together and give our relationship another try. It was about 6 weeks from the time of that decision until he was actually able to come back. So after much anticipation and excitement, he arrived last night around 10:00. Ari tried so hard to stay up and wait, but he just couldn't make it. This is the third incarnation of our relationship and it really seems like we can make it work this time. It feels great to have him around again, and so strange to be a single mother one day, and not the next day.
So anyway, that's the story, and believe it or not, that's the SHORT version!
I'll end this post with one of my favorite pictures of Na and Dudo. (circa 2005)
Wishing You New Beginnings,
mama randa the pseudo-wife
mama randa the pseudo-wife