There are many ways of breaking a heart. Stories were full of hearts broken by love,
but what really broke a heart was taking away its dream - whatever that dream might be.
Pearl S. Buck

Saturday, December 16

What a Year!

Okay people. Some of you don't know me very well. Or maybe you do, I am not one to be shy about my business. HA! deal. But I thought that I should do an inventory before the New Year. What has transpired over the last year of my life, and hand out some well deserved thanks to the people who got me here. So the story begins.

As some of you know, November 2005, I set out on the road with a two year old son and moved us to California. I didn't have much in the way of cash, nor did I take many belongings with me. Previous to this journey, Here is the story.

I was involved in a three-four year relationship with a man who has "poor me" syndrom. (I have a feeling at the time I was similarly afflicted.) I found myself pregnant, and realized that was going to be a burden I would solely carry. After working through the stigma of dealing with being pregnant out of wedlock, (therapy for sure. my parents had a very difficult time with it) Thankfully I had found full time employment during this whole ordeal. Unfortunately, I found myself in a job where I was treated and paid poorly. To be sure, I was pretty low. I was feeling depressed, desparate and desolate. But, I am a strong woman, or maybe just mule stubborn, and kept on smiling in the face of the tests. Just as I had decided to turn things around, by moving in with my best friend, I lost my job. I am not entirely innocent in that transaction. It was a blessing in disguise. I could have gone after them, but I was so happy to be out of there. They were/are bouncing paychecks, making shady deals and treating some of their employees awfully. And, they cost me 2200 of my savings investment with them by not paying the premiums to the savings house. You can see how I might have had some subconcious desire to run from that place like it was on fire.

I was at a crossroads. A few weeks before my job loss, a girlfriend of mine was talking about moving back to California. I had joked with her about coming along. She said to me, "You are wasting your talents here! You should quit and come along." The previous two years had lead me to California three times for various events. I attended my sister's wedding, went to a great party in Pasadena, and also a family reunion. During the months after my last visit to California, I had moved in with my friend, liquidating my furniture, and belongings, to save money. And after falling in love with its terrain and weather, I mindlessly thought about it. No real intent in place. But, with this sudden freedom, I thought, why don't I move!? The intent was set in motion. And the universe couldn't have been more compliant.

Here are a few of the details:
I had two cats. What was I going to do about them? Where would I leave them? A friend from work was going to the pound to pick out a couple of cats for her husband and her son. They have a much better home life now than we had.

Where was I going to stay while I found a home? My sister was on her honeymoon in Italy, I got to stay rent free in Napa for a month. Sistah! thanks for having faith in me, and being a most generous auntie. And John, for laughing at us instead of being annoyed.

Where Am I going to spend Thanksgiving? with a new cyber friend Jason. Thanks to him, his BBSOW, and her sweet intelligent family, I had a great meal, and great company! thanks bro!

Where would I stay along the way? I had a friend in LA that let me stay with him a few days. Thanks B. I have a good friend in Santa Barbara! She offered to take me to a few places to look. And to stay with her for a week. You will always be my Santa B. sis Lexi!

What am I going to do until I find an apartment? My uber-cool aunt in Carmel let me crash her guest house for two weeks. Barb... without your generosity, I would have been lost.

So, off I went. Less than 1000 in my pocket. No home. No job. And a two year old. Amazingly, I felt the best I had in a long time.

So I landed in LA. Drove to SB. As soon as I crossed that line, my body relaxed like it hadn't in five years or more. I knew I was at home. I should have found an apartment that day! But instead I took some freelance work, and traveled the state a little. Finally got a paycheck from an old freelance job owed me for about a year. And with the help of my most generous benefactor, My wonderful Father, I am here. Moved in on Dec. 16th, to apartment #16, and the third 16 to that equation? My sons birthday is a 16. It cinched the deal for my soul and my concious. I knew we were fated to be here. The first six months were more stressful than pregnancy. Not working, living hand to mouth, pacing the streets looking for any kind of work that would allow us to stay. I was rewarded six months later with a permanent job with the company my father works with. That day I had two other job offers as well, including an interview for a job paying just a bit less than I am making!

Its far from over, but without these special people, including my son, well, I don't like to think about where we would be. Fate has lead me to this moment. I took all its hints and offerings hitching the Nissan to a star! We landed in paradise.

More to come about the six months and the happenings that followed. But for now, even living in a tiny apartment in California, we are happy, blissful, and moving forward with creating a new life. Deep sigh of content.


  1. Thanks for sharing this story, Melanie. You're truly a courageous woman, and I'm happy that things have turned out well for you and your son! May you always be blessed!


  2. I read your blog, and I used to be 16. Coincidence?????

  3. You sound so happy, now. You made the best move for yourself and your son:-) I'm glad you've found your home!

  4. You have no idea how much I admire you for what you did.

  5. Way to go. Sounds like you're feeling better than you were after Thanksgiving.

  6. I know this sounds corny, but I have really enjoyed the upheaval in my life in the last year. With it, has come great freedom.

  7. I apologize for the writting here. Its not my best. but had to get that story out on the 16th. :wink:

    C: thank you. Its amazing that I can still think actually I was mighty stressed out those six months. Got a few more grey hairs.

    rat: hm... yea!

    crush: I really have! Its the first time I have ever felt at home in a place. Its where I should have come oh so long ago.

    BHD: It had to be done. You knew me when I lived in TX. not as pretty a MeM as now. :huggles:

    alison: you have done some major movings in your life as well. thank you for that.

    loops: yea. i had a bit of depression around thanksgiving. oh well. moving on!

    mist: its true though. once you make choices to free yourself of something that isn't working anymore, its like flying! BTW, it can become addictive I believe. ;-)

  8. You sound so happy. That's awesome. Maybe the same will happen to me when I finally move to NY. I'm about ready to just pack up and leave and do the same sort of thing. Glad things worked out for the best, they have a tendency to do that, huh? :)

  9. karma: my experience is that if you believe wholly it will happen. Never doubt, even when things seem thier gravest. Things always work out anyway. I have high hopes for you young lady. *good-vibes*

  10. Incredible and inspiring story!!!

    you are not only a brave woman but a smart one too.

    do you mind if I link this post this week? I find it refreshingly upbeat and an interesting tale about your life.

  11. goddess: feel free! thanks for the kudos. :hug:

  12. You forgot one important detail. You met your cyber brother and your life has never been the same since!



  13. Cyberbro: I am going to do a follow up on the actual trip soon. As a footnote: you are the coolest, and if you didnt already have such a spectacular wife, I would be.. well, tempted to move! ;-)

  14. What a beautiful,exciting,liberating story.
    Good for you!
    I think you're amazing:)
    Congratulations on all you've acomplished thus far!

  15. Kudos for "hitching the Nissan to a star"...
    I love that line..

    Happy Holidays!

  16. My best friend Barngoddess linked to this post so I came by to read.

    Sounds like you have turned the corner in your life and are making your life better. I hope this holiday season is a blessed one.

  17. SoCal is the answer alot of people find. I did too and it truly transformed my life into the blessing it is today! *hifives you*

  18. Here's to new beginnings!

    "always happy, yet never satisfied. wanna know why? got about an hour?"

    You can explain this in an hour? It's taken me 40 years to scratch the surface! * grin*

  19. Hi! I'm here thru BarnGoddess.

    What an amazing woman you are! Fabulous, just wonderful. I do so love a happy story.

    Such determination and strength, I admire you greatly.

    Congratulations on your success and may this holiday be one full of love, joy and peace for you & your family.


  20. MsI: Its more like determination and desire. I do appreciate the kind words. Happy Holidays!

    Steph: Thanks dear! Happy Holidays to you as well. :HUG:

    Brian: Goddess is pretty cool herself. Hope your holidays are warm and wonderful. Good to have you on board!

    Maryen: No doubt! I dont see how people could ever leave here to live somewhere else.

    Allan: Despite my lengthy post here, I could condense my 40 years experience into an hour's worth of explanation to that particular statement. Welcome!

    FelineF: what an awesome handle! Aw, thanks for the amazing. Really, If you met me in person you would realize I am just a big goof. But a determined goof. Thanks for the love. I hope your holidays are full of peace, love and good food!

  21. Great post Mel!

    You are very brave. I don't think I would have had the balls to do it. You really are an inspiration :)

  22. Oh Melanie, I just loved hearing your story!! It is so inspiring to hear how you struck out on your own and accomplished what you felt you could do. And isn't it wonderful to have such great friends and family members? Sounds like you are truly blessed!!!

  23. Mule stubborn is a good thing. Don't lose it (as if you would!)

    Christmas cheer to you and bubba.


  24. i'm just getting to know you, so thank you for this summary wrap-up of your recent history. gets me a good idea of where you've been and why you are who you are.

    thank you, again for the lovely secret santa gifts. and thanks for becoming a new friend.

    happy holidays to you and yours!

  25. Nonny: really? cuz you strike me as a pretty brave sort... Thanks.

    Cheryl: I thought twice about writing this entry, because I surely thought everyone knew my story... Guess not. And, BTW, you are a blessing too. :HUG:

    alison: Merry Merry to you as well!

    rebecca: I am so glad your giftees got there, and you enjoy them. I wanted send some things from California, and picked three. I am also thankful that I got your name, have always wanted to know more about you as well. YIPPPEEE! a new RP friend. "RP has changed my life"... HUGZZZ

  26. Didn't mean to overwhelm you with skank.

    Happy Holidays!!! This is the first time I have been in the holiday mood in over 25 years - I think the ex's daughter's choir recittal really had a profound impact. Anyway, for you perenial holiday people - enjoy!

  27. I didn' know the whole story either, only its and pieces.

  28. rat: its your style man! :wink: I try to overlook your bad points.

    Loops: so, thats the most recent part of my story... :giggles: