We are now a two-cat family! We rescued Sophie from the SPCA shelter two weeks ago, and she joins Emily that we adopted when I moved here. Sophie looks much like a smaller version of Emily who is a full blood Maine Coon cat. (Emily is with me in the sidebar photo.) Sophie is of mixed parentage - her fur is shorter, as are her legs and tail, but she has the beautiful Maine Coon markings, coloring, and round green eyes, and most definitely the gentle, affectionate personality they are known for. Emily and Sophie are the same age - almost 5, but Sophie is smaller so looks as if she is a younger sister. Both kittys are the sweetest furkids imaginable and they adore John. After spending a year in an apartment where pets were banned, it is a precious luxury for me to again have furry children... and furry furniture, carpeting and clothing to match! :-)
My job is going great. My supervisor and I are very similar in personality and work ethics, and she has been wonderfully supportive and flexible. The boss and other staff are all friendly and I am fitting in nicely. One evening last week as I was heading thru the parts warehouse on my way to the car at the end of day, one of the younger parts department men called out to me. When I turned, he handed me a a cold beer and an invitation to visit a bit with some of the others who were unwinding after a very busy day. It felt great to be included, and the beer was exactly what the day called for. I called John as I left, and by the time I got home he had ribeye steaks on the grill and corn in the microwave for our supper. It just doesn't get any better than that!
My allergies are under control, for the most part, these days. I am finding that I can indulge in the occasional beer or piece of chocolate, etc. without experiencing the hives and asthmatic reactions I was six months ago. There are still some triggers that I've yet to pin down, but overall I am feeling much better and not so restricted. My blood pressure also stays in the low/normal range without medication. I think that says it all about the level of stress I was experiencing before.
I really love living in Odessa! Being in a larger city that has all the amenities after living in a town that offered so few options in the way of shopping, restaurants, doctors, and entertainment is really fun. Odessa is easy to get around in, and much to John's humor I prefer to take the longer "loop" route around the city coming home from work at night, because the drive is more relaxing than playing bumper cars with the traffic and multiple stoplights on the more direct route. I actually get home just as fast, and I love flying down the Interstate enroute, letting the issues of the day dissolve in the music blasting from the stereo. :-)
All five of our grown children are doing really well in their lives, and are accepting and approving of our marriage plans, including the one who had some initial reservations. That really is a blessing, since we are marrying into each other's families and certainly neither of us wants to be the cause of friction between parent and child. My father is also approving of John, though being typically Dad had to state that he "hopes I know what I'm doing this time." Thanks for the vote of confidence Dad.
A final piece of the puzzle in the breakdown of my last marriage came to light recently. I learned that my ex was doing "ice" during that final year, which explains the extremely erratic behavior and large sums of disappearing money. It also explains the rapid weight loss after I left him. I guess deep down I knew that had to be the case, but even now it hurts my heart to know that he would do something so self-destructive. His fiance (though they don't intend to legally marry) is a good person and loves him very much. I hope that his choices and priorities don't drive her away too.
There is not a day that I don't reflect back on what life with my ex was like, and how very blessed I am to now be in a totally different environment and relationship... one which nurtures and comforts and brings joy instead of sorrow. If there was a purpose to experiencing the suffering and struggles that I thru the years, I can only believe that it was to help me realize and appreciate how very good I have it now. I know that I have mellowed thru the years, the rough edges having been worn down, and John says the same is true of him. Maybe it took all that we have gone thru to make us ready and right for each other, and in that case it was worth it.
Well, I know there are more things I want to share, and I'll probably remember them at about 2:30 AM as I am prone to do. I'll try to return more often with updates and tales of our lives here. Tonight my goal is to get to bed at a reasonable time so that I can enjoy Friday and the weekend ahead. It's county fair time here so a fun outing is definitely in the works. Don't laugh people, this is West Texas and it's a good way of life!