Archive for the ‘Family Dynamics’ Category

A 35 Year Sentence!!!

Posted: September 16, 2011 in Family Dynamics, Lovelife, Musings

I’m going to jail!!!




Apparently, what I did was wrong but – who knew?

I sure as fuck didn’t. Well…

I mean really! Dancing naked on your own balcony can’t be such a heinous crime, right?

It isn’t.

And I’m not going to jail.

I bet I had some of you worried there for a bit, huh?


I did get a stiff fucking fine for my dancing though!

$1500 for ‘indecent exposure’!!



There is nothing indecent about my derrière and the dance moves weren’t too shabby either…

OK, so all kidding and ‘April Fool’s Day’ joking aside (even though it’s September. I’m either five months behind or seven months ahead – take your pick!)

My parents celebrated their 35th wedding anniversary recently and (naturally) it was a big event. All us kids were there and the grandkids.  Friends and other relatives (doesn’t that come out of Winnie the Pooh?) were there too and we all had a jolly time.

35 years! Wow!


Now, that is a long sentence –  one that they both relish and appreciate.

It all started on a beach in LA 36 years ago in December of 1975. Daddy was studying at university to be a civil engineer and mom was at nursing school. They met at a party and (according to dad) ‘there was an instant connection’. Mom says she was a bit sceptical of dad at first but ‘he grew on me’.

According to Aunt Dee (dad’s sister) he had a drink too many and told mom, ‘I’m still going to marry you one day.’ Where by mom responded, ‘Sure and you can call me Elmo.’

It’s a family joke because sometimes dad DOES call mom ‘Elmo’. It always makes her smile.


So, nine months later, on a hot September morning, mom and dad exchanged vows on the same beach they met.

Nanna and Pappie (mom’s mom and dad) weren’t too thrilled about their daughter’s ‘whirlwind romance’. In fact, when the two young lovebirds told them that they were getting married, Pappie turned to dad and said, ‘If you got her knocked up I’ll knock you down.’

Pappie died shortly after my eldest brother, Sebastian, was born (three years later, mind you) so I never knew him but he sounded like one hell of a guy. He took no bullshit, spoke his mind and enjoyed life. Remind you of anyone?

So, now you know how my brothers and I came to being. It all started on a beach in LA, 35 years ago.

You also know where the craziness comes from!

Mom and Daddy have been married for such a long time, dad’s parents were married for fifty-five years, Nora and Sebastian have eight years of marital bliss, Jesse and Jasmine have ten years and Ruben and Holly have seven.

Thinking about this made me very jealous and dumped me back into feeling cheated. My shrink (yeah, I still see him) says that eventually, I’ll no longer feel cheated.

Um – yeah, whatever. I’ll always feel cheated by Logan’s death.

But, enough of that.

I’ll post another blog a bit later of what actually happened at the party that has caused me to be absent for a while.



My Mother’s Potplant…

Posted: January 14, 2011 in Family Dynamics

My mother is (in my eyes at least) one of the most wonderful people that I know. She has raised us four kids (three boys and then little old me) to be respectful and at the same time to stand up for ourselves. We were taught to always, ALWAYS take care of each other and that there is nothing more important than family.

She has also had to put up with her husband (our daddy) for well over thirty years now and – as much as I adore my father, he’s stubborn. (Hmm, so that’s where I get it from!) His job, while us kids were growing up, often caused him to be away from home for a week sometimes two weeks at a time so it was mom’s job to make sure the four of us get through it.

It wasn’t easy. I assure you of that. When I was born, my brothers were five, three and one (give or take a few months) so – yeah. She was tough but loving, caring and at the same time encouraging us to look after ourselves.

Now, I mention all of this because when we got older we became – quite a handful. As soon as Sebastian had his driver’s license we would bugger off for the evening leaving mom at home worrying about us. Not that anything ever happened. Not with my brothers there all keeping an eye on me and my very own killer right hook!

We (and here I mean all four of us, not just me) also smoked weed. We even grew our own at a stage but – yeah we fucked that up royally by buying ******’s Miracle Growth for our babies which made them GROW but also caused a bit of a stench. So much so that our neighbors got suspicious and we ‘got rid’ of the evidence before mom found out.

We also ran away from home when we were aged between 16 and 11. Sebastian wanted to join the circus, you see and not one of the rest of us were staying behind. If he was going – we were going. Period. We left early on a Thursday morning and by nine that night (when there was still no trace of us) Mom called the cops, thinking that all four of us had been abducted.

We were found at around one-thirty in the morning in the movie theatre. Bundled into the squad car, we were taken home where we were yelled at and hugged very, very tightly by a crying mom who could barely express her thanks to the two cops that brought us home. We were then told that she had called our dad who was on his way home.

So, I guess what I’m trying to say is, we didn’t make it easy on mom but we made it through and now as we kids all look back on those times, we laugh about it all.

I wasn’t laughing when I went to visit the folks last night and was told at the door already that there is something my mother is simply dying to show me! ‘It’s such a gorgeous plant, Andi! And it’s grown so much since I first found it.’

‘Found it?’

‘Mhmm.’ Mom nodded and smiled at me broadly, ‘Growing outside in the cold, I didn’t know if it was going to make it but – look at it now!’ My mother then proudly stepped aside and that’s when I saw it – a gigantic fucking cannabis plant growing in the middle of the lounge room!

I looked at the thing and gasped, ‘Mom, what the hell is that doing in here?’

‘You mean my carnifictious (???????) plant?’

‘Mom – that’s not what that is! That’s a – ‘

‘Isn’t it beautiful?’

‘Yeah it is.’ I replied meaning it with all my heart. You see, mom has got quite the gardener’s instinct and I swear anything she sticks in the ground will grow. So, can you imagine how a plant that is doted on, regularly given fertilizer and has music played to it will do!

I then looked over at Dad who simply shrugged. When mom left to check the pots he said, ‘She loves that plant.’

‘Why, for crying out loud? It’s a weed plant Dad! If she’s caught with it, she could be arrested!’

‘You know your mother, once she has her heart set on something – ‘

‘Mom!’ I exclaimed very worried about the fact that they have that plant in the house. ‘Mom!’ I then explained the situation to her, telling her that it was in fact a cannabis plant and that it was illegal to grow the things. She listened intently, nodding that she understood and smiled at me when I told her that I didn’t want to get into trouble about the bloody thing.

‘Andi, what about your little garden when you and the boys were still living at home? Don’t you think I felt the same then as you do now?’


Up in smoke!!!

Posted: December 20, 2010 in Family Dynamics

No, don’t worry, my apartment didn’t catch fire!

My plans did though! I was going to spend this Christmas with Logan’s parents and his sister, Lyra and her husband. I was going to take a bunch of Logan’s things out to them; things that I’m sure they’d like to get back. I was going to fly out to them (with the boxes) and spend five days with them, from the 22nd until the 27th.

Yeah, I WAS going to do that. Then I freaked. I know it might sound cruel, but – I can’t look at Logan’s father without seeing him. I can’t – face them, it hurts too much.

I talk to them at least once a week, I send them emails and even put up with Lyra’s bullshit but – it hurts. I think it’s because out of everyone that has ever known Logan, these people are his family. He spent 18 years of his life with them until he moved out to New York, they know him, you know? They know him very well and have memories of him that I don’t even know about.

Like, he once nearly killed himself with a science kit when he was twelve. He fell out of a tree when he was eight and landed on his sister, breaking her arm while he walked away with nothing more than a bruise on his ass. He and his cousin, Benjy, have been in more trouble together than the rest of the family combined.

Logan lived in that house. He grew up there, his fingerprints and memories of him are everywhere. ‘You see that swing, Logan built it.’

‘You hear that creaking in the steps, Logan once dug up the floor boards to put his ‘treasures’ under there.’

I can’t do it!! I can’t – be there. It hurts bad enough living in the same apartment, walking up and down the same set of stairs where he breathed his last breath, knowing that he was so close and yet – so far from me when it happened.

I know it must be torture for his parents too, living in the same house where they brought him home from the hospital, watched him take his first steps, where he fell, scrapped his knees, where he donned his baseball uniform, said goodbye as he went to school, went to prom.

It can’t be easy living with those years and years of memories but – I’m weak like that. I can’t bear to see others in pain and Logan’s parents are still in pain. Who wouldn’t be? I also don’t want to feel the same miserable, inadequate feelings that I had the last time I saw them.

How do you tell a mother who lost her child ‘Merry Christmas’? How I even begin to try to comprehend how she must feel? I hated it when people told me that ‘they know how I feel’.

Bullshit, man! No-one knows how I feel! I have moments when Logan isn’t at the forefront of my mind anymore. I have moments when I feel lost without him because I still have this dumb notion that he’ll walk through the door any minute and say, ‘So, did you miss me?’ Only, he never does.

I know that I should go to see them, that I should at least make an attempt of having Christmas with them – but I can’t. I’m not being selfish – actually, yes I am. I’m not the only one that’s hurting and I bet that seeing me will at least – God, I don’t know!

What if it hurts them to see me just it hurts me to see them? What if they’re secretly hoping that I can’t come out to see them? Don’t get me wrong, I love Luke and Lillian as much as I love my own parents and I know that they love me but there’s this – void between us now.

It’s one thing being married to a guy and going to visit his parents together but now, I’m his widow. Going to see them feels – like an intrusion.

That’s why I canceled my ticket. I don’t want to relive the pain, I don’t want to look at Luke and see Logan staring back at me. I don’t want to see Lillian as a shell of her former self.

So I decided to go to Las Vegas for Christmas. To go somewhere where I can’t be reminded of last Christmas, where I don’t have family fussing about me, wondering if I’m OK. Where no-one will look at me and immediately know that this is horrible for me.

I booked the ticket, the hotel room, the show I was going to see on Christmas Eve – everything. I was going to take two hundred dollars and see what I could do with it at the gambling tables.

And then I canceled that too. Too many people, you see.

Nora tells me I’m nuts. She says that I was supposed to spend Christmas with the family because it’s the triplets first Christmas and it was ‘expected’ of me to be there.

Expected? Don’t I have a say in my own life? Can’t I do as I damn well please? I know what it’s all about –  they don’t want me alone over the holidays in case I become miserable and do something stupid like drink and take tablets again.

I think that stage has passed, however. I think I can handle myself a little better now. Still, that doesn’t mean that I have to do what they expect me to do, right?

I swear, if London’s Heathrow airport was open, I’d fly to England, just to piss them off.

So, at the moment, I’m ‘plan-less’ for the holidays. I guess I could still fly out to Luke and Lillian and see how that goes, I could also go to Vegas and forget everything for a few days at least or I could what is ‘expected’ of me and have Christmas with the family but – fuck it!

I’ll decide a little later!

Who knows, I might even go to South Africa or India or – Russia!


Living via Compartments

Posted: October 22, 2010 in Family Dynamics, Lovelife

For those that didn’t know, it was my birthday on the 20th and I turned 26!

HOO  —–  RAY!!!!

I love b-days. There’s something strangely exciting, thrilling, awe-inspiring, dread-filling and beautiful about getting a year older. I don’t know what it is; perhaps it’s the human psyche of ‘Holy shit! I survived another year! WOW!!!’

Anyway, as we partied (and believe me, we partied!) I couldn’t help but notice that, even though I have a diverse variety of friends (work friends, rock climbing friends, childhood friends, drinking friends, friends who, by all rights, should have been shot but are still hanging around!) they all remained knotted together in their various categories.

A  drinking buddy, for example, didn’t mix with the rock climbing gang and vice versa.

Like oil and vinegar, tar and feathers, a Persian rug and red wine, children and chocolate syrup.

I was left to pierce the veil of ‘sort with sort’ attitude and spent a considerable amount of time having to circulate around my own party, trying to get the diverse flavors to combine into a virtual culinary delight of ‘awesomeness’ which would have hard to beat.

It was tiring.

Needless to say, the party was awesome anyway despite a hiccup or three along the way. Telling a married woman that you’d like to ‘see how she rolls’ isn’t met with laughs, especially if said married woman is Nora and the husband in question is Sebastian.

Also, ‘nearly’ spilling red wine on my genuine Persian rug is again, not a laughing matter! It is a bona fide way of getting your ass thrown out of my apartment. And I’ll do it myself, have no fucking fear about that! There are few things in this world that I cherish more than that rug. It was a gift from my aunt who I loved very, very much.

The only thing that is worse than that, is if you threaten to ‘slap the cat’.

By God, man!

You don’t hear me threatening to ‘slap the child’ do you?!

No-one and I mean NO-ONE slaps my Binx. I will firstly, punch your fucking lights out, then I’ll let Binx have a go at you. I shit you not!

Right, after hiccups were sorted, we continued to party into the wee hours of the morning. It was just after my last guests left at three in the morning, that i realized, I am living my life in compartments.

Compartment 1. Work.

Compartment 2. Rock climbing.

Compartment 3. Family.

Compartment 4. Recreation.

Compartment 5. The not-so-good habits and friends that I sometimes see.

I then (due to FUCKING insomnia!) set myself in front of the laptop and with a drink in one hand, a plate of leftovers beside me and Binx purring on my lap, I saw that, even my emails have been compartmentalized.



James Aarvarkian

Nancy Spirit Lights the Way

Paula Reflections


Missy Clark



Rock climbing




Why do we, as humans, do that?

Why do we split everything up?

Green veggies, reds, blues, yellows?

Is it to make life easier so we can say, ‘OK, today I will tackle the WORK aspect. Tomorrow the FUN aspect’?

What if there is no tomorrow? Shouldn’t we try to live every aspect, every day?

All I know is, my compartments are getting crowded and they are starting to ‘infringe’ on my other compartments.

Someday soon, they’ll have to blend and when they do, boy or boy am I going to be in for a surprise!!


Recycling an Old Dress…

Posted: October 11, 2010 in Family Dynamics

My niece is five. That miraculous age where everything is a question; all answers you provide are returned with more questions and even then you’re not right.

For example:

‘Why’s the sea blue, Aunt Andi?’

‘Because it reflects the sky.’

‘How does it reflect the sky?’

Umm? ‘Like a mirror.’

‘No, that’s not right. God poured paint in the water so we have color.’


O – K

Don’t know where she got that idea from but OK.

‘Why can birds fly but we can’t?’

‘Why’s the moon round?’

‘Why do sunflowers follow the sun?’

Whereby I answer: ‘I don’t know kiddo, ask your Dad.’

‘The moon’s round coz a square moon would have looked silly, wouldn’t it? Birds can fly coz they’re smarter than us and sunflowers follow the sun coz it’s their mommy.’

Again, O – K.

Smart, yes. Just a bit naive.

She’s also the apple of my eye. I love her to bits and I know you’re not allowed to have favorites but – yeah. She’s the eldest niece that I have and she reminds me so much of myself. Even her father, my brother Sebastian has commented on it.

‘Sweet Jesus, Andi. She’s going to be just like you!’

Right, back to the reason I wanted to throttle her but at the same time wanted to cry with her. I have a rather extensive wardrobe. I’m not bullshitting you. Really. If you saw it, you’d probably wonder how the hell I could fit it all in the closet.

I have a few favorite pieces that I wear for ‘special’ occasions. One of those pieces is a Dolce & Gabbana dress that I just – ADORE! It sits like a second skin without appearing tacky or cheap. Although, I will say it again, NOTHING IN MY CLOSET MAKES ME LOOK CHEAP!

I believe I have covered that topic in my post on WEbook so I won’t delve into it again.

Ahem – right.

The Dolce dress is the dress that I was married in so it has a very special meaning for me. Little Miss Sara wanted to play dress up. ‘The flower one, Aunt Andi, the flower one!’ Reluctantly I agree but, I mean, it’s no biggie, we always play dress up. I was babysitting, something I do regularly and we were playing around, dancing and having fun with Dylan, her three-year old brother when the buzzer rang. Take out had arrived!

I swear, I was gone for two minutes to get the food and I wasn’t even gone! I was standing in the doorway of my apartment, twenty feet away from her if that. I paid the man, said thank you and goodnight and shut the door.

When I turned around again, Sara had fallen over, tripped in the fabric I guess and had torn my dress! She lay there, not knowing whether she should cry or not, with a gaping hole in my dress.

I dumped the food on the table and ran over to her. ‘Sara!’ I exclaimed, ‘Are you OK?’ Naturally, when I asked this question she burst into tears which was shortly followed by Dylan. Sara crawled into my lap and while I comforted her, I saw that my dress was ruined.

I felt like crying too.

We sat there for a couple of minutes, Sara openly bawling, hiccuping that she was sorry she ripped my dress, Dylan sitting with us, playing with Binx (my cat) and me, trying desperately to hold back the tears as I looked at my dress.

It was ripped, torn, beyond repair, I knew that even though I don’t know a damned thing about needlework and I got to thinking. I haven’t worn that dress since Logan’s death. That’s seven months ago now and, in retrospect, I doubt I would ever have worn it again.

It was just too painful.

I then shut my eyes and thought, ‘OK, this is a good thing.’

‘Aunt Andi? Are you mad?’

‘No, Sweetie. I’m not mad.’ I smiled and helped her out of the dress.

‘But it’s your special dress.’

‘Sara, it’s just a dress. Don’t worry about it.’ Later, once they were asleep, I held onto the dress and cried (it does happen on occasion). I cried and then I laughed.

All of this because of a dress?!

Such materialism!

Even though I knew it was ruined and that I would have to throw it away, I still couldn’t bring myself to actually walk over to the bin and drop it in. I then had a wonderful idea as I sat looking at it. Perhaps I could recycle it.

After two hours of extremely difficult work for me, I sat back and looked at my handiwork. My Dolce dress has a new function now. It is now a 15 inch square cutout that my wedding photo is placed on in a frame, hanging from my bedroom wall.

I threw the rest of the dress away without a second thought.




*The photo above is one taken of my niece and a friend of hers. My sister-in-law, Nora took it. I don’t know where though. I also don’t know who the lady is in the foreground.