Aug 5, 2014

I > You

Hello, dear Secret Readers. Welcome to the “new” blog. I’m glad you’re here.

I started this blog over three years ago as a personal diary of sorts. I’d started with notes on Facebook, but eventually wanted something a little bit easier to manage. Thus, Hovering at the Brink of Insanity was born.

I have always written. I don’t know exactly how many Young Author awards I won - but suffice it to say, there were a lot of them. I write to memorialize. I write to purge. I write to forget and remember (which is basically the same as memorialize and purge - but let’s try to look beyond that.) The first three posts in this blog were things I had written about on Facebook, and simply copied over. They were just funny stories about the kids.

Since I started this blog, I have had over 25,000 unique individuals read it. 25k! I don’t think our whole town has 25,000 people in it. I have had one of my posts picked up by a national magazine. I have had posts tweeted about and shared. This baffles and embarrasses me, I don’t know why. And yet, I secretly hope someday I will write something as awesome as this and it will land me a book deal.

Hope springs eternal.

Quinn and Claire’s teachers, my dad’s girlfriend, Peter’s family, my ex-husband - they all read my blog and tell me they enjoy it. I had a friend message me today and tell me, “I enjoy your rants. You are one of the best writers I know personally, and I lived in Hollywood surrounded by hacks who called themselves writers.”

I say all this, not to pat myself on the back, but to try and explain why I do this. I write for me. I like that people read it, and I like that people like it. But if no one read it - I’d still write. It’s part of who I am.

Yesterday, I found out that “someone” wrote a letter to my bosses and used this blog as proof that I am unfit to work for their organization. I say “someone” because the person who did this was a complete and utter coward (of course, bullies always are cowards) and sent their letter anonymously.

This person (and I think it’s an injustice to the human population to include them as part of the species) cherry-picked through my posts, copied portions of them, and used them as supposed proof as to my ability to perform my job. So they included the picture of my kids flipping the bird, but neglected to include the post wherein I explained that it was part and parcel of a life lesson discussion I had with my kids about swearing and inappropriate gestures.

They included the paragraph where I said I had 487 rum and cokes, but neglected to include the post where I said that the reason why was because I had just gone through the stress of the First Communion process with my two kids, it being the first major celebration/sacrament thing for them since I was divorced. And... really? If I really had 487 rum and cokes, I’d be dead - not writing blog posts.

They said that I provided my son with illegal pornographic material, but neglected to include the post where I said I bought my kid a Maxim magazine so he wouldn’t surf porn, and the whole “teachable moment” I created to talk to my teenager about sex.

What they didn’t include was the post I wrote about the amazing job my mom’s nurses did for her while she was in and out of the hospital before she died. They didn’t include my post about my friend’s son who was critically ill, nor the one I wrote after he died. They didn’t include the post I wrote about the little boy who died on his birthday and how hard it was to take Quinn to his first funeral. They didn’t include the posts I wrote about how terrifying it was to find out Claire has incurable brain disease, or about the dog who was being neglected, or about missing and abused children.

They didn’t say anything about the humorous posts: the ones about lice treatments and how I’m not a MILF and how kids are not toasters.

No. They claimed, “The purpose of this letter is to make you aware of the type of person you have as the voice of your organization, interacting with families, and conducting your workshops. After what I have read about Andrea, I am appalled that this person would be in the position of mentoring parents in building parent/professional partnerships. Her behavior and character are morally questionable and reprehensible.”

They tried to get me fired from a job that I love, that I’m GOOD at, that helps families in the community navigate the complicated special education system to make things better for their special needs children.

This was a person who didn't have concerns - they had a vendetta. And they tried to take away my livelihood because of it. And they tried to take away something I love doing - writing - because they cannot stand that people read what I write... and like it.

For the record, I am about 99.9% sure who this person is, or at least who they associate with. This isn’t the first time they have maliciously attacked me or my children, and it likely won’t be the last. But what I know and what I can do something about are very different things. Fortunately, Eric is going to speak with his attorney in Minnesota to find out what he can do to protect the kids, and I have a call in to my attorney as well.

I am *very* fortunate that my boss took the time to go through nearly two years of my blog posts. The coward that tried to get me FIRED was an idiot to include the link to my blog rather than just the photocopies of portions of posts. My boss said she found my writing clever, said I was talented, and said she didn't want me to just delete my blog. She's the one who told me how to make it private. She also complimented me on my parenting style, saying that it's obvious I am a very creative parent which is a good thing.

So, today, despite this “concerned parent’s” best efforts - I’m still here. I’m still writing. I am still going to mentor parents, educate the community through trainings, and build parent/professional partnerships. You didn’t win anything. You didn’t take anything away from me. And I am still better than you. Always.