Sunday, April 15, 2012

Well, well, well

Since I last blogged (over a year ago), there have been (quite obviously) some changes around the Savannah and this might help explain my absence!  I ran the Marathon Relay and finished my 5K leg in about 30 minutes.  That was kinda awesome.

During Spring Break of 2011, The Lion and I were on rocky, rocky terrain and thought a short vacation might help, so we visited my older brother and his family for a few days during The Lion's off set.  In my opinion, that trip marked a turning point in our relationship, which had been strained-to-the-breaking-point for a multitude of reasons over the preceding 6-7 months.  Because I'm in graduate school our life seems to be on hold - we were afraid to buy a house because we didn't know if we'd even qualify and the prospect of saving up for a down payment and paying back student loans and saving for retirement and saving for the cubs' college and..and..and - it was all a little overwhelming and The Lion was feeling the majority of the burden because he's pretty much the breadwinner in the house these days.  We thought we'd have to move into an apartment so we could get reduced or free rent while he provided security to the complex in order to save up for a down payment - that's how bad it was.  BUT THIS TRIP!  The Lion and my brother spend a lot of time talking (edit: my brother spent a lot of time talking.  The Lion just listened. or couldn't get a word in edgewise.) and they talked about houses and buying and the market (my brother's a financial whiz kid) and how he was rejected the first two times he applied for a mortgage.  This did something to The Lion.  We got back home and he decided that we should just give it a go and see if we could actually buy a house.  and you know what?  That's exactly what happened.

We bought a house.  Who knew?!  But we didn't just buy a house.  We bought a house and closed on it and moved in a week before the biggest exam of my graduate career thus far.  The exam-to-end-all-exams.  The exam that tests all the knowledge of the previous three years.  The exam that makes or breaks a doctoral psychology student - The General Examination for Admittance to Doctoral Candidacy.  It's pretty important - if you wanna graduate.  It's four days long, for a combined total of about 24 hours of essay writing.  I'd been studying almost all summer, and also trying to buy a house because I relish seeing how much I can handle <insert sarcastic emoticon here>.   So this brings us up to about September.  At the same time, The Lion was studying to become a Drug Recognition Expert - the hardest school his department has to offer.  He was memorizing matrices, interaction effects, symptoms, you-name-it.  He passed his test.  I passed my test.  He's a DRE and I'm a doctoral candidate.  Yay for us!!

So. October. Ugh.  October means it's time for me to start writing more essays and applying for an internship - the final year of my degree and a transition to working in the "real world" as a psychologist.  The thing with internships in Psychology is that they have to be accredited and meet certain criteria and (oh, by the way) there aren't enough to go around for every psychology student for a myriad of reasons - about 25% of applicants won't get an internship, which means they have to postpone graduation (and working) for at least a year.  So it's a pretty stressful situation.  I applied my heart out.  I wrote essays and edited and wrote and edited (and cooked and shopped and cleaned and parented and wifed and worked my regular PT job and worked my other PT job and went to class and got settled into our new home!) and then got offers for interviews - 4 interviews out of 10 applications.  Two of the interviews were close to our Savannah, one was 4 hours away, and one was 10 hours away.  I was hoping and praying for one that was close to our Savannah because the internship is a year-long experience and we just bought a house!  The interviews went well, except for one (I got a migraine right at the beginning of the day and was vomiting in their bathroom by the end of it. That was a great first impression) but I ended up being offered the internship that is 10 hours away.  This means the cubs and I have to move away from The Lion for a year because The Lion isn't about to start over in another city with another academy and lose the seniority he just acquired.  I don't blame him and I would never ask him to do that because the cubs and I are coming back here anyway.

That pretty much brings you current on the goings-on in the Savannah.  I hope to write again real soon - like later today, maybe.   

~ The Lioness.    

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Sauvignon Blanc and Salmon

I had my oldest, dearest friend over the other night for grilled salmon and some wine and lots of conversation.  She recently moved back to our savannah after spending 10+ years in the UK.  I love her.  I've known her for almost 25 years.  We gel and I'm over the moon about her being home again.

The thing is, she's starting her own business and I'm in the middle of a pesky doctoral degree and we're, well...we're damn busy.  The only reason I had Friday night open was because it's the start of Spring Break and I didn't have to worry about reading chapters and chapters before Monday rolls around again.  Is this what it's like to have a regular job?  Do you get to have friends over on the weekend?  Only 2 more years and I can do that allll the time.  Keep your fingers crossed that we survive it.

So, why am I up in the middle of the night, you ask?  I'm up because I had Sauvignon Blanc on Friday night.  A lot of Sauvignon Blanc.  My brain felt two sizes too small all day Saturday and I slept most of it away - thank God I wasn't nauseous.  The Lion was home with the cubs until he went to work, so that was taken care of.  The cubs crawled in bed with me at bedtime and I woke up around 2 AM.  I always wake up then, though, because that's when The Lion gets off shift.  Does anyone else do that?

So, I'm up.  I did the dishes, cleaned up the living room a little and sat down to do some studying.  You see, I have a Comprehensive Exam on March 24th that will test all my knowledge to this point and might even earn me a Master's Degree.  So, I have a lot of studying to do but I figured I'd ease into it with a new post.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Off Days

This set off has been a little different than most: The Lion and I called our sitter to watch the kids and had a double date on Thursday evening.  I developed a taste for The Macallen, 12 Year.  Mmmm...  We went out with another LEO couple and had a nice time.  Very relaxing.  There have been a number of benefits for a local officer who was hurt recently, so we supported those establishments all night.  Then we went back home, opened a bottle of wine and sat around the table in our backyard and talked for a few more hours.  The men had cigars and the weather was nice enough, we were able to light some candles and take it easy.

We had plans to run together on Friday, but my morning meetings ran late and a nap seemed more in order than a run.  We made up for it by getting to the gym together on Saturday evening after spending most of the afternoon at a birthday party - the cubs went with us to the gym and the little one promptly jumped on the mats and told the older one to "wrestle!"  It did not end well for the older one!

The Lion grilled Saturday night and we spent most of the afternoon and evening together on Sunday (even watched a movie!)...all this is to say I got lots and lots of quality time with my man this weekend.  Something I sorely needed.  Most people seem to think it's easy to be a Lioness, taking the extended absences in stride, sharing him with his buddies and his hobbies on his off days.  It's not easy and I'm not graceful at it quite yet, but I'm getting there.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Help?! Lonely Lioness

Because this is all new to me and because I'm in a field where we analyze everything and everything means something - I need to get some perspective from those who have been there with LEOs.

The Lion works 8 days on and 6 days off, 4PM-2AM.  We are very lucky with this kind of set schedule - while he's patrol, it will never change unless he submits a transfer request.  However, we don't see him during those 8 days (except the occasional Saturday and Sunday afternoon before he goes on again) and when he's off on the 6, we're at school/work. My question is this: how do you handle it when your LEO wants more cave time in addition to all the time he already spends away?

The advice we hear all the time is not to bother them with such things - we don't want to distract them from their duty.  I guess I'm having a hard time figuring out what needs his attention and what doesn't...


In other news, The Lion got home at 5 AM and I woke up and wanted to run.  Sheesh.  It might turn out that I actually enjoy this running thing.  It was still dark out and I'm always on the lookout for hyenas (and stray dogs :/) so I was a little anxious, but I sucked it up and ran. and ran. and ran. I ran almost 2 miles in about 22 minutes.  Not too shabby for a beginner.

Thanks for listening.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

"Run, run, run, run..."

I have that Ali Harter song stuck in my head now.

Phew.  Today is my long day at school.  Supervision at 8AM, Class at 9 AM, meeting, client, paperwork, then a 3 hour class to end the day.  But -- I fit in a run!  It was only a 10 minute run, but I got 'er done :)

My cohort members are pleased that I'm running, too.  The stress reduction benefits are supposed to be great and stress reduction is something we all need these days.  I won't have time to run tomorrow unless I get up at 5 AM.  I'm not optimistic about that happening.

Monday, February 28, 2011

My Running Playlist

Just a little motivation to keep up with my ladies:

1. Lip Gloss                                            L'il Mama
2. Flagpole Sitta                                     Magnificent Tracers
3. Crush With Eyeliner                           R.E.M.
4. Connected                                          Stereo MC's
5. When the Levee Breaks                     Led Zepplin
6. Porn Star Dancing                              My Darkest Days
7. Where the Streets Have No Name     U2
8. Love and Peace or Else                      U2
9. Mofo                                                   U2
10. Strict Machine                                  Goldfrapp
11. The Moneymaker                            Rilo Kiley
12. Starstruck                                         Santigold
13. Vicious                                            Spalding Rockwell

What do you listen to when you run?

Denial About The Day

I've been perusing other LEO wife blogs and have seen a few posts about The Day.  The Day we don't like to think about but have to prepare for.  Here's one at A Policeman's Life and another from Matt, Rachel & Cadence.  Those were both tough reads.  Another one, at Life While Handcuffed to a Lawman, broaches the practical topic of what to do after The Day.

I go through cycles.  Today I'm in denial that anything could ever happen to my Lion.  He's a big, badass sonofabitch and his roar...well...I heard him roar clear across a grocery store when I went on a ride-along about a month ago and he said, "You heard that?!  I wasn't even yelling."  It's something to behold.  So today, I'm in denial.  Today the hyenas are not going to get him.

When he first went out on his own (he doesn't have a partner), I spent the first 6 months praying that he wouldn't die.  After I went on that ride-along with him, I feel a little better about his chances.  I mean - he has a vest and backup is never more than a minute away.  We hardly went 5 minutes without seeing another officer that night.  They have each others' backs.  It's comforting to a worry-wart like me.

When he was in the academy, they made the recruits write up their funeral plans.  He wants lots of Guinness and promised to haunt anyone who played 'Danny Boy' at his wake (An Irish cop?  You're shocked, right?)  Other than that, I don't know what he wrote or what he wants done.  I'm not ready to look at that quite yet.  Or think about it.