Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Perfect Moments...Sometimes Go To Crap In 2.5 Seconds

I write often of the fragile combinations that make up a child's life; The irresistible upward motion of precariously stacked building blocks...The smooth symbiosis of peanut butter and jelly...The glory of playing in the rain, but the chill of the wind that follows.
While I normally write of these moments in the lives of children; Today I found, these moments can also be applied to adults.

Today was one of those days for me.
Today was the kind of day where I looked at people galavanting around without children, and thought, "Man, I wish...Just for a minute....Wouldn't that be nice?"

Don't wrinkle up your nose at me.

Every parent has those moments... and if you try to negate that...Well, I'll say it...you're a lying sack of crap.

Everyone has moments like that.
 The vacations and spur of the moment trips that you can't go on.
 Trips to the grocery store that shave twenty years off of your life.
The worry.
The constant battle of keeping the toys in the toybox and the shampoo in the bottle, instead of down the toilet.

Folks, sometimes...having kids sucks.

Today started off a great day. Abby went to school, and Sammy took a long nap. I got a lot accomplished and we swam in the pool. It was really fun...until about an hour ago.

Abby asked if we could go to the splashpad and play, and I agreed. We loaded all of our stuff into the car and away we went. When we arrived there, my daughter (who is afraid of her own shadow) ran toward the water at a dead sprint.  She was laughing like a maniac. I sat down on the cement barrier sort of shocked and amazed, pulled out my book and started to read. After a while, Abby yelled, "Hey, Mom! Look at me!"

When I raised my head, I found myself almost blinded by the beauty of the moment. My children, bathed in the golden- end of the day sunlight, smiles beaming from ear to ear, running through the water and having the time of their lives. Without care or worry. They were living in the moment. Their laughs floated toward the sky with a heavenly grace that only children possess. It was, to say the least, one of the most beautiful things that I have ever seen. They played for quite a while, and when Sammy approached me, shivering from the cold I decided it was time to go.

This is where my great day begins to unravel at the seams.

Dressing a shivering, wet two year old is difficult. What normally takes me about a minute or less took me five. I'm not sure what it is, but whenever an opportunity presents itself for my son to streak through the wild outdoors sans clothing... He does this with much gusto. It took me forever to chase him down, and then I recieved vicious looks from the fat woman sitting across from me when I spanked him with my wooden spoon. So, Sammy is crying and snot is flying everywhere, and...I still have to drag Abby's reluctant butt out of the water and dress her in some dry clothing. The conversation was sort of like this:

Me: Abby, come on, sweetie. Time to go.

Abby: Buuuuttttt, MOMMAAAAA, I STILL WANNA PLAY IN THE WATER BECAUSE IT'S AMAZING AND FUN. AND I'M GREAT! WATCH THIS!!!!

Me: (eye starts to twitch) Abby, I am going to ask you one more time to come here so I can dress you. If I have to come get you I am going to spank you very, very hard with my spoon, and it will hurt. A lot.

Abby: THIS ISN'T ANY FUN!!!!!!!! I NEVER GET TO HAVE FUN IN MY LIFE!!!!!!!!!! I DON- ..Okay, Momma...No...No...No...No...No spankings. I'm coming. Please don't whoop me.

Me: You are gonna get a whoopin' when we get home. Come here and get dressed.

So, after much arguing during the redressing process and retreiving Sammy from the mud puddle by the splashpad, we were ready to go home. Now, keep in mind that during this whole redressing, get ready to go home period ...Abby continued to argue with me. Silently, and with her eyes, but still arguing.

There I am.
My eye twitching, wrestling with a muddy two-year-old blue eyed demon, mud caking my, "Bart Howell...The lesser of two evils." shirt, when I hear Abby let out an ear splitting scream. I look behind me to see her splayed out on the concrete like a crash test dummy. She tripped and skinned her elbow.

 The conversation went something like this.

Abby: OHHHHHHH MYYYYYYY GOSHHHHHHH!!!! I'M BLEEEEDING!!!! WAAAAHHHH!

Me: Abby. You are bleeding, but you are going to be fine. I promise. I will fix it as soon as we get home.

Abby: YEAH, OKAY! WELL, I DIDN'T WANT TO WALK IN MY WET FLIP FLOPS AND THEN I TRIPPED AND YOU WOULDN'T CAAAARRRYY MEEE-E-E.

(This is the part where I sound like an insensitive ass, but you really had to be there. She was being excessively dramatic and it was hardly bleeding.)

Me: Abby, you are too big to cry this way. You fell down, but it's going to be okay. I'm going to make it feel better, but now...I want you to put a bubble in your mouth, and get in the car. I love you, and you're pretty, but you are being silly about this.

Abby: I'm not silly. I'm hurt.

Me: I know!!!!!!!!!! (Now I start to cry) But I'm tired, and I don't feel good and your brother is muddy and you keep arguing with me and all I want is for you to listen and not argue and just get in the car. Please?! PLEASE!? WILL YOU JUST GET IN THE CAR?!
Abby: Okay, but just don't cry for me like that. I'll do it, just don't cry.

Believe it or not, the very short ride home was one of complete silence that was broken occasionally by one of us sucking in air between our sobs. I bathed the children, bandaged their wounds and then... I ate a piece of chocolate.

Chocolate is like an emotional band aid... really, it is.

Today, I realized that, eventually, every cool thing starts to suck.

 Now, I'm not saying that every day with my children is laden with emotional breakdowns and paddlings with a wooden spoon.

Only clarifying that the idea of fragile combinations can not only be applied to the lives of childrens, but to adults as well.

I love my children, but today kind of sucked. That is all.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Man, My Foot Tastes Terrible

It's funny how tiny moments can transport a person out of the adult realm in their life, and make them feel like a kid again. However, this isn't always a great thing.

I had several small, and one huge, "Open Mouth, Insert Foot", moments today. I won't go into great detail, but needless to say...I think being in a rush, and failing to pay attention to minute details, were probably the two main causes of my faux pas. Needless to say, I feel like a total ass. I have felt like an ass all day. I will probably still feel like an ass tomorrow.

With that being said...I went for a run today. In the rain, and it was AMAZING!

Halfway through my run, I stopped and realized that I had actually been jumping in the puddles of water.Not in a casual, "Oh-I'm-Running-And-Stepped-In-A-Puddle" way, either.

I was two-footing those puddles.

 I was having so much fun that I didn't even realize that I'd ran past my turnoff, and I had to double back. Time seemed to stand still, and for a short amount of time my stress dissovled, and I forgot about my blunders earlier in the day. I forgot about the laundry and dishes and worrying about all the menial garbage that bogs down my day. I forgot about it all, and just jumped from one puddle of water to another. It was wonderful. By the time I got to my house I was soaked through, and my heart felt lighter.

There is no deep meaning behind this post. Just to say that sometimes...life puts a sad face on my heart, and the tiniest of moments that are shared with no one...Can make it happy again.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Shut Up...You're Annoying

I would like to take this time to clear the air on a particular subject.

My weight loss. I'm not anorexic, bitches!

My weight loss journey began in November of 2009. I was feeling a bit under the weather around Thanksgiving and went to the doctor. We went through the motions of  a regular doctor visit, and then my doctor says, "Whoopsie! We forgot to get your weight. Hop on that scale."

To give you an idea of what my life was like a year and a half ago...I wore a size 16 pants, a 36DD brassiere, and had the energy of a dead slug. I wasn't going to "hop" anywhere. My "hop" was more of a, "clomp". I gingerly stepped on the scale and held my breath. For some reason, I felt that doing this will, somehow, make me weigh less.

Holy shit. 209 lbs... Surely, that wasn't right.

At that moment, I had an epiphany...It was something like this:

Jeezus, I'm fat. I'm really, really, really fat. Man, I need some chocolate.

This visit to the doctor, and having a minor surgery(had my appendix taken out) sort of jump started my weight loss.

I began to set small goals for myself. The first one was to run to the end of the road and back.
I didn't make it.
I made it about ten houses down before I turned around and walked home.
 Each day, my goal was to to go a little further than I did the day before.
 I did this everyday for six weeks, and one day I looked up and thought, "Wow, I just ran all the way to 12th Sreet without stopping to pretend to tie my shoes! I'm doing it!"I then began to modify my diet. Eating salads with vinegar and oil, and cutting meat out of my diet. I cut down on my dairy products and started taking vitamins. I found out that potatoes and breads are really an essential part of a balanced diet, but, much to my disappointment, chocolate is not. I learned that I really could live without eating those waxy Little Debbie chocolate donettes and chocolate milk for breakfast.

I began to notice, almost immediately, that my clothes no longer fit.
 My boobs were escaping out of the bottom of my brassierre, my underwear had a chronic saggy butt, and my shoes were roomier! I was unaware that one could lose weight in their feet.

After six months of working out five days a week, and eating a primarily vegetarian diet I had lost forty lbs. Running was now a part of my routine. Take care of the childrens, clean the house, cook dinner, and run. Before I realized it, I was enjoying the foods that I had forced myself to eat. I was vaccuuming my living when room when I had a sudden moment of clarity. It was something like this,

This has been more than a "diet", or a workout program. This is a lifestyle change.

It has been a hell of a journey. With a lot of ups and downs, and tears and sweat and injuries. However, since that fateful day in November of 2009, I have lost a total of 80 lbs.
I did it all by myself. I didn't use diet pills, meal replacements, or hire a trainer. (Although, with the exception of the diet pills, I endorse using meal replacements (sometimes), and if you have the money and need the motivation...by all means, hire a trainer. I would have if I could afford one.)
Now, on to why I blogged about my weight loss journey. Contrary to popular belief, I did not write about this to be all, "Look at me, look at me. I'm skinny now."
I didn't do it to inspire anyone, or to guide anyone through their weight loss journey.

I wrote about this because today, someone that I care about, a lot, gave me a hard time about my workout routine and my eating habits. I believe her exact words were, "Well, I don't see why you're still excerising, and eating cucumbers and shit. You don't need to be any skinnier. You look anorexic."

First of all... No, I don't. I'm healthy, fit, and I look that way. I am secure in the fact that I look better, at this very moment, than I did before I birthed my childrens. I feel at ease with how I look, and I know that I am making healthier choices for my life...Which helps me make better choices for my children.

Secondly, I know you're reading this and I want to apologize;

I am sorry that you are such a hateful bitch that it is a physical impossibility for you to be happy for others. I am sorry that you feel the need to bring others down when you are having a bad day. I am sorry that you don't have enough, "oomph", to motivate yourself to be a nicer human being.
In short, I'm sorry that you are annoying and spiteful, and that you delight in making other people feel like poop.

Thirdly, shut up. You're annoying.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

The Mountain Woman of the Universe


Time is a concept that humans have no grasp on. I mean, sure…We think about the minutes in the hour and the hours in the day and the days in the weeks and the weeks in the months and the months in the year, but…We really have no clear understanding of the value of time, and it’s direct relation to our lives.

Sometimes, things happen to us that will alter our concept of time... Forever.

My grandmother was an amazing lady.
A stand up lady.

Shit, she wasn’t even really a lady. She cussed like a sailor and smoked a pack a day, and had no filter between her brain and her mouth. She said what she thought and she almost always said what she meant.

You know, it’s funny because when you’re little you don’t really think about your parents and grandparents dying. Sure, parents leave…they walk out…they get divorced…they lose jobs…they forget to pick you up from school or go to your graduation…but dying?

No.

I never told my grandmother that I thought she was amazing.

I told her that I thought she was crazy.

I told her that she was controlling and needed to cut the invisible umbilical cord and just let me grow up. Let me worry about my own bowel trouble, and my own band aid application.

I told her that she needed to stop smoking.

I told my grandmother everything except what I needed to tell her.

I should have told her that I thought she was beautiful, and elegant. I should have told her that my favorite childhood feeling was her cool hands on my forehead when I was sick.

My favorite day of my life was with my grandmother. It was the day I started my period, and she said,
“Well, no one wants to feel like a goddamn menstruating walrus. Let’s go get ice cream.”

We spent the entire day just being together. Hell, half of the time we didn’t even speak. I was twelve and I let her hold my hand and I didn’t care that people were watching. At the end of the day, she tucked me in and said, “My little dumpling…I must’ve done something really, really, really great to deserve you.”

I should have told my grandmother how much she meant to me…and I shouldn’t have screened my phone calls. I should have taken her out to eat more, and lectured her less about her bad habits.

And these, memories… Her telling me about some third generation gossip that I cared nothing about…Her telling me to put vinegar on my sunburn…Singing Bee Gee’s songs and dancing around the house. These memories are all I have left. I listen to her voice, and I close my eyes, and I miss her.

When my grandmother had a heart attack…It was a shock. It shouldn’t have been, though.
She smoked a lot, ate a lot of hamburgers and exercised never.

She was in the hospital for five days.

There’s a concept of time for you. How do you tell someone everything you want to tell them, ever, in just five days. The day it clicked for me that my grandmother wasn’t coming home from the hospital was the day I walked into her room and she couldn’t press the button on the remote control for the television. She asked me to do it.

My granny, the goddamn mountain woman of the universe…The strongest woman I knew… Couldn’t even press the neoprene button on her remote control to change the channel on the television.

The funeral was really nice. It was simple. A lot of people I didn’t know were there. I guess I never realized that she had so many friends.

More than anything…I just hope that my granny knows that I loved her.

I loved her more than I ever told her.

I can’t believe it’s been seven years.
Time…It just gets away from you.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Fragile Combinations

Bejamin Franklin is credited with saying, "In this life, nothing is certain but death and taxes." Most of us, live our lives under the notion that we will die late in our lives. We marry, have children, set up house and march through life at a steady, comfortable pace.

Occasionally, things will happen to us that will cause us to stop and evaluate our surroundings. The unexpected occurences often make us cherish each moment that we have....At least for a little while. Eventually, the shock wears off and we fall back into the comfortable rhythm of the hum-drum.

Today, I saw a friend of mine while running some errands in town. I had to look twice to be sure that it was her. She'd lost an unhealthy amount of weight, and there was something very different about her. It took me a moment, and I realized that she didn't have any hair. No eyebrows, no eyelashes...no hair. Period. She told me four months ago that she had cancer, and I have spoken to her on the phone and on Facebook frequently, but the shock of seeing how sick she really was...Well, it was like a punch in the stomach.

My friend is young; 35. She has an eight year old daughter that worships the ground she walks on. I could wax poetic about all of her majestic qualities, but I will simply say, she is a marvelous human being.

When speaking to her today, she told me that she forces herself get out of the house three or four times a week even though it depletes her energy. We talked about the weather. I told her a few funny stories about my children, and throughout our conversation I couldn't help but notice how peaceful she seemed...

Until we started talking about her daughter. She asked me, "Lucy, how am I supposed to answer every question she will ever have, about everything...in just a few months?"

As I sit here typing this, my son, Sammy is stretched out on the couch beside me and my daughter, Abby, is playing in her room.

 I am, at this moment....This very mundane and ordinary moment....so very,very lucky.

I am healthy...mostly, and my children aren't in immediate danger of losing a parent to an ill fated disease.
Today, I am overwhelmed with the privilege it is to parent another human being, the luxury of love, the decadence of caring. Being a parent, raising these children...Well, it is the only thing in the world that only I can do.

You know, a child's life is made up of fragile combinations. The irresistible upward motion of precariously stacked building blocks...The smooth symbiosis of peanut butter and jelly...The glory of playing in the rain, but the chill of the wind that follows.

My heart is breaking today for my friend and her daughter. Today, was a reminder for me:

 You must treasure your family.
 You have to take the good with the bad.
Don't mince words... say what you really mean.
The sticky smell of pickles and cookies on little hands is the sweetest smell in the universe.

And most importantly...Ben Franklin was right. Nothing is certain in this life.

Truths

 
 
            Greg has a poster in his office that depicts two penguins standing side by side on a glacier in the Artic somewhere. Above it, it reads, “Truth. The first step to healing.”

There isn’t really anything else to look at in this office. Greg doesn’t have any personal pictures on display, or self help books stacked haphazardly in a corner somewhere. He does ,however, have one of those pendulum things on his desk. I lift a ball on the right side and send it into motion. I do this every time that I am here because it irritates my therapist. He makes me wait in this dreary office because he knows it irritates me. This is our way of bonding. Every week it is the same routine. I come into his office, swipe peppermints out of the mesh container on his desk, and look at that stupid poster and think, “Really? Why on earth would the people who designed this poster put penguins on it?”

It makes no sense. They aren’t even the cute little black and white penguins. They are those ugly ones with the yellow sticky out things on their heads.

Greg comes into his office after I have been waiting for ten minutes. He is drying his hands on a paper towel; it looks like an expensive brand.

Brawny, probably.

Greg isn’t married, and I don’t think he is gay. I haven’t quite figured him out. From the waist up he looks like a Ken Doll. His hair is perfectly combed over, and his shirts are all very starched, but once you begin to look below his waistline everything begins to unravel. There is a small stain on his khakis, and he is wearing white socks, black shoes, and one of those hideous braided belts. It’s brown
.
“Hello, Lucinda. How are you today?” I don’t know why he asks me this every time.

Of course I try to deflect any questions with humor, “I would be doing better if my boobs were bigger.”

I say this to shock him. It worked for the first month, but I think he is used to me now.

He sits in the chair across from me and crosses his leg ankle over knee, notepad ready. He rubs his hands over his eyes, and looks at me.

“You know that I am hear to listen. You don’t have to entertain me. This joking about your breasts isn‘t healthy”

I shrug my shoulders, “Who said I was joking? Probably, I would be in a better mood if my breasts were larger and higher up on my body. That’s all I’m saying.”

He puts his glasses on. This is about to get serious.

“I know that your less than ample breasts aren‘t the problem because you are actually talking about it. The things we don’t talk about. The things that we suppress and keep inside. Those are the things that cause us the most discord in our lives. You must learn to speak the truth. Whether it is tiny, insignificant things that you believe to be true or big secrets from your past. Speak your truth.” The clicking of his pen is the sound that signifies that it is now my turn to speak.


I’m not sure how much time passed before I said anything. It could have been five minutes, it could have been fifty. I pay for an hour and a half, and I am pretty sure that I annoy the hell out of him. He is probably happy that I haven’t said much today.

“So, what? So you want me to tell you things that I know to be true? Okay-Well, um…the sky is blue. I’m not sure if you know this, but you have a small stain on your pants that, actually, is in such a place that it draws attention to your crotch. Your socks are both white, but they don’t match. I hate that poster on your wall, with the penguins. It doesn’t make any sense. You should really decorate more in here.
You expect people to talk about their feelings and you don’t have anything personal of yours on display for us to look at. It’s kind of crappy, I think. I know you aren’t married, but I haven’t decided if you are gay. You have very effeminate hand gestures, but at the same time manage to have a very manly stance, and I am pretty sure that I saw you looking at my cleavage the first time I came here. I hate commercials with a burning passion. I hate the sound of the Oxy-Clean info-merical guy’s voice, and I actually feel bad about it now because he is dead. I feel like I am disrespecting him because I hate his voice. I hate it that I wasted so much of my life working at the jewelry store. I have a terrible ability to just say things without thinking about them first, which is usually never a good thing. I wish I could talk to my husband more, and that he would really listen to me. I love my children, but wish I would have waited longer to have them.” I stop speaking suddenly, because I realize that I don’t really want to talk to Greg anymore. He didn’t write anything down which is a pretty good sign that he was listening to me talk.

I can tell when he is really thinking hard about what to say because he begins making a sucking sound on his teeth. This, in turn, causes my eye to twitch. When he does this, I could kick him in the forehead and not feel bad about it.

He uncrosses his legs, leans forward with his elbows resting on his knees, and removes his glasses.


“I don’t have anything personal in this office because I don’t have much of a personal life. I’m not gay, but I have kissed a guy before. The stain is from my hot dog that I ate at lunch,” he takes a deep breath and rubs his hands across his face, “I was married, but we were both too young and it didn’t work out. I hate it when you play with things on my desk, and when you crunch on peppermints during our sessions. I feel really, really sorry for your husband. I like long walks on the beach and fruity, frozen drinks when I go to the bar.” He says the last part with a half smile on his face. He sits back and crosses his arms across his chest.

 Like a challenge.
What is this? Some sort of psychological dance-off?

This is weird.

 I have to go. I stand up and gather my things.
“So, um- thanks for listening to my…you know. I’m sorry, about the…I’m sorry if what I said about you was somewhat inappropriate, but it was all true. I guess that’s a start.” I gather my things and turn to leave. I have tears in my eyes, and I just don’t understand why I am crying. I have never been a graceful crier. Demi Moore, in Ghost, now that was graceful crying. A little red nose, and one tiny tear, just trickles down her cheek. Perfect. I, on the other hand, cry like Julia Roberts.
Snot literally flies out of my nose when I cry. It isn’t pretty.

I grab a handful of Kleenex from the small table by the door and shove one up each nostril. I feel like I have to tell him something more. It’s like a pull from within me, and I can’t stop it. I try, but something inside of me spews the words out against my will.

Vomit of the mouth.

“I try to make everything a joke. I figure if I can make people laugh then they won’t see my troubles. I am really insecure about everything that I do. I look at my life, and say, “What have I accomplished?” I haven’t been anywhere, I haven’t done anything that will change the world. I’m twenty-three and I feel like I have nothing to offer anyone, but I do a great job of making it look like I do. I actually like coming here. I look forward to it even though I try to tell myself that I hate you. I think you are really nice, and even under different circumstances we could be friends. I don’t want to talk about my childhood. At least, not for a while. I’m- um…I’m going to go home now.”


I leave. I shut the door too hard, by mistake. I should probably go back in and tell him that I didn’t mean to shut the door so hard. I decide to stop by the receptionists desk and just tell her.

 I tap on the glass window, with rapid, Morse Code like taps. Janet, the receptionist slides the glass back and is looking at me strange. I’m still crying, sort of. I’m trying to stop, but it isn’t working.

“I’m sorry to bother you, but could you just tell Greg that I didn’t mean to slam the door. The window in his office was open, and I guess it just shut louder than I expected it to. So, could you just let him know that I didn’t mean to slam the door.”

Shut up, Lucy. You are an idiot. Just go home. Stop talking.
I don’t. It gets worse.

“I mean, I could go in there, but I got really emotional and I’m afraid if I look at that poster in his office again I may just have to rip it off of the wall. I think I am going to go and get some ice cream, and just calm down. So, yes, please let Greg know that I didn’t mean to slam his office door shut, and that I am fine. I am of sound mind. I will not be drowning my children in the bathtub today. Ha, ha, ha…hee, hee…um, okay. Have a nice day!”

I wince as I realized that I sort of shouted the last part.

I turn quickly to leave, but am stopped by the sound of Janet opening her little side door. I feel a hand on my shoulder. I turn around and she hugs me. Janet releases me from the embrace and holds me at arms length, and then very gingerly she removes the tissues from my nostrils, pats me on the cheek and says, “I don’t think you are crazy, but other people might. It would be better not to have the Kleenex dangling from your nose, just in case.”
 
 

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day, and All That Crap.

Today is Mother's Day, and I am the mother of two amazing human beings. Therefore, I should be enraptured by everything that is, "Mother's Day"... But I'm not.

To me, Mother's Day is just another day of the year. Personally, I think it is a sensationalized holiday that greeting card companies, jewelry stores and flower shops all use for financial gain. They're in cahoots, I tell you!!

When we think of Mother's Day, we think of what we see on television; Mothers being awakened very gently by neatly dressed children, only to discover a perfect two-egg breakfast beside their bed. We all know that this doesn't happen. I don't know about the rest of you, but when I wake up in the morning, I look like I've been on a three day bender, and my children are almost always in various states of undress with snot running from their nose. I don't know about the rest of the world, but the mornings at my house are not all sunshine and roses. Mornings at my house are hell on Earth.

 While I think it is wonderful that there is a special day set aside to honor the mothers of the world... I also believe that this holiday, like any other, has become downright outlandish. While I was purusing the Mother's Day cards, I noticed that they have Mother's Day cards of all sorts.  They have cards to mothers from children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, god-children, husbands, wives, (yes, I really did see one that read: "From your loving wife." Which, I think is great news.) friends, neighbors ,co-workers, and here's the kicker...I found a Mother's Day card with the closing line of, "Love, Your Four-Legged Friend"... I can only guess they are referring to the animal-child of the house.

While people celebrate their mothers today, I don't think anyone truly understands the holiday until they have children.

I now understand that I have a special power within me.

When I'm singing my daughter to sleep and she says, "Mommy, sing "You Make My Sunshine"...

 I know that I not only have the power to guide her into a peaceful slumber just with the sound of my voice...I have the power to understand her heebly-geebly made up language, and to heal boo-boos with a single kiss and a tickle.

 Being a mother is more than what one imagines in their head. It isn't all cuddling and side-walk chalk time. It's sort of a mess. It's actually an enormous mess.

It's getting puked on, pooped on, and snotted on...All in one day.
 It's soothing tears and cleaning up messes.
It's doing the before-bedtime-scavenger hunt for the "one" toy that the children can't sleep without.
It's saying something, slapping your hand over your mouth and saying, "Holy shit, I sound just like my mother."
It's knowing that for at least sixteen years of your life your name will be changed to, "Whoevers-Mom".
It's the constant worry, and the constant love.
It's wanting to choke your children, but at the same time wanting to hug them.

While there are a lot of terrible, terrible, terrible things that go along with being a mother... I think it's the single most important thing that I will ever do with my life. If I can raise my children to become great people, with good hearts... then I have made a huge contribution to the world.

In closing, I would like to say that when we celebrate Mother's Day, we shouldn't celebrate the fact that people are mothers simply because they birth children. We should celebrate the women who have lost sleep, kissed boo-boos, and have taken the time to raise us into the people we are today... and we should do this everyday...Not just one day out of the year.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Working Class


For reasons that escape me, I always end up at the grocery store on the first of the month. I don’t receive food stamps, WIC, or any other sort of state assistance. Also, I know that there are times when people really do need help, but most of the time the system is abused, and we all know it.
 
In short, I should know better than to go to the store on the first of the month.

Needless to say, there I am: dodging people with carts piled to the ceiling with soda, oven pizzas and screaming bare-footed childrens. I have two goals while I’m at the store:

1.) Avoid anyone I know because I was looking FRIGHTENING.
2.) Not spend more than $127.00 because that is how much cash I had in my wallet.

I accomplished my first goal with flying colors. Now, it is entirely possible that they saw me in my frazzled, un-kept state and thought, “Wow, Lucy is lookin’ rough. I better stay away from her.” Anyway, here’s where the story gets interesting.

As the checker lady is ringing me up, I begin to unfold and count my very large, but extremely organized stack of one and five dollar bills. From behind me, I hear an obnoxious sigh, and in a voice that probably shattered the eardrums of dogs oceans away, someone says, “Jesus Christ. Now this is really going to take forever. She’s paying with ones.”
I stopped counting my money, (which was already divided into ten stacks of ten, by the way) gathered every bit of it back up, and began to count it like a little, senile old woman. Licking my finger and everything. It probably took me a solid five minutes to count it out, and then…here’s the kicker: I dug around in the bottom of my purse to find exact change. She sighed and coughed and talked obnoxiously about how sometimes people could be so annoying.

Let me tell you something, lady. I am part of the working class that is paying for your food stamps, Bitch.

Sure, it took me a while to count out my money while I was paying for my groceries, but at least I did actual work to get them monies…You know, aside from popping out children. (There were 6 children with her, by the way.) So, my advice is to you is this:

1.) Don’t piss off the people that are a part of the working class that pay for your damn groceries….when you do, you are biting the hand that feeds you, literally.

2.) Homemade marijuana leaf tattoos are SO last year

3.) Bitch, when it’s 50 degrees outside… booty shorts and a translucent t-shirt aren’t the wisest of clothing choices.

Have your pets spade and neutered. That is all.

Can't Run Away From Yourself

Merriam-Webster defines clarity as: The quality or state of being clear. Free from mist, haze or dust.

I often write about these, "moments of clarity" that I have from time to time. Sometimes, they come to me slowly, and other times they fall upon my perfectly shaped head like a ton of bricks. Today, was a ton of bricks sort of day.

It was cold today. Too cold to run, but I hadn't been in two days and I have this terrible fear of being fat again. Thus, I made myself go. I was running along, nodding my head to the Adele song playing, but not really digging it. The song ends, and I hear the unmistakable opening bars of a Bob Marley song come through my headphones...And I think to myself, "This is good. A little Marley on a cold cloudy day will help boost my spirits..."

Bob is singing to me, in his little reggae-ganja-laced voice, "Ya running and ya running, But ya can't run away from yourself,Can't run away from yourself -Can't run away from yourself..."

And so...as you can guess....I stopped running. Dead in my tracks.

I was running away from myself. I have had an inner struggle over the last year. Trying to find my place in the world...Wait, did I really just use a Micheal W. Smitch song lyric? Yuck.

Anyway, for the last year, I've been trying to find out who I am. Aside from being quite the domestic goddess, and an outstanding mother, I have lost sight of who I am without those things. Of course, I tried my hand at a lot of different activities:

Scrapbooking- It didn't go so well. I lack the patience required to document every moment of my children's lives.

Being a "room  mom" at Abby's school-  This didn't work out for two reasons: 1.) I'm not put together. I'm the mom that's running up to the school at the very last minute in my pajamas. 2.) Aside from my own children, I realized that I don't like kids all that much.

After the previous two hobbies were unsuccessful, I thought I would focus on fixing up my house. I was actually really great at this, but I found that my weekly budget was depleated with just a few trips to Hobby Hell, and that this actually turned me into a Cybill-esque type of mother. Wire hangers anyone?

It wasn't until I exuded a lot of energy trying to find a hobby, that I realized. Duh, ya dumb shit. Being good at a particular activity does not define who you are as a person.

I went about this completely wrong, and spent a lot of time and energy working in the wrong direction.
So, there I was; wearing my "Property of Bart Howell" t-shirt, listening to Bob Marley and crying in the middle of the road.

Bob was singing, "Ya must have done... Somet'in' wrong... Ya must have done.... Wo! Somet'in' wrong... Why you can't find the place where you belong?"
And that, my friends, is when the brick fell on my perfectly shaped head. It was something like this:

Holy shit! I'm an idiot.

I sat down and made of list of ingredients, or inherent qualitites that made me who I am. The list is as follows:

I'm funny.

I have two amazing childrens, and they are the most important thing I will ever do with my life.

I almost always look for the good in people, and often blatantly refuse to see the bad. Which, in turn, almost always lead to disappointment.

I am a writer. That is really what I was born to do.

I am the product of a highly disfunctional family.

I love cake, and I think I need help. I'm addicted.

I struggle with being alone, and even though I like doing things by myself... I hate the idea of being without anyone.

So, that's "who" I am. I've realized that we don't have a place or a purpose. We must simply be who we are, and do the things we enjoy. That's our purpose...or, at least, my purpose.

Now, when I run, I can honestly say that I'm not running from myself. I'm running for myself.

Finally.

Conversations With Abby- Peepers and ShyShys

My daughter is four, and her curiosity about everything on the planet varies from being the most adorable thing that you have ever heard in your life.... to annoying in about 3 seconds.

My son, Sammy, has recently taken to streaking through the house, naked from the waist down...(Apparently men develop an obscene fascination with their man-parts at an early age.) While Sammy's new pastime bothers no one else in our home... Abby becomes infuriated whenever Sammy runs around naked with his doodles "bouncing all over the place."


********************
Abby: MOM!!! SAMMY TOOK HIS PANTS AND DIAPER OFF AND I CAN SEE HIS BUTT!!!!

Mom: Okay...Abby, please don't scream like that. It's not a big deal. I just have to put his diaper back on.

Abby: But...Mom? Why do little boys want to run around naked?

Mom: Because, Abby...they like it. Little boys are kind of weird, and we're just going to let your brother be weird and run around naked.

Abby: Why can't he get in trouble today for being naked?

Mom: Because...that's what Sammy likes and he's little and he isn't hurting anyone so...we're just going to let him do it.

Abby: Why?!!! I don't want him to be naked, why can he do it?

Mom: Because......you did it too, when you were little. When we were teaching you to use the potty. We let you run around naked, and it wasn't very long and you were using the potty.

Abby: Yeah, but Mom! (Long pause) His peeper is just bouncing all over the place!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Torpedo Breasts and Dirty Crocs

I wait tables.

Let me elaborate, I wait tables at a buffet that serves mediocre, cafeteria grade food and caters to an older clientele; Old women who carry little plastic baggies around in their oversized purses, and men with arthritic knees and grumpy demeanors.

 Unfortunately, we also attract another type of customer, Window Lickers...Also known as:

Paste Eaters
Spam Eaters
Banjo Ticklers

Everyone knows the kind of people that I speak of:

 Women with chin hair, no brassieres and dirty feet shoved into even dirtier Croc shoes.
Children with mullets, temporary "Mom" tattoos and dirty faces that are in a perpetual state of stickiness.

Window Lickers invade a space like a pack of Wildebeest being chased by a Cheetah through the Serengeti.

To be clear, I do not think that I am above anyone in any area of my life. I do, however, have enough good sense to be a fly on the wall. I'd rather be Plain Jane and go unnoticed my entire life than be noticed because I'm not wearing a bra in public.

I would like to take a moment to tell you all about a woman that visited my workplace just yesterday.
Her name: "Amazon Titties"...

She was, the tallest woman I'd ever seen in my life. After getting over the initial shock of how tall she was, I noticed she was wearing a floor-length zebra print dress.

My first thought was, "Man, there's a whole safari under that zebra dress."

 After a moment, I came out of my trance only to see her enormous, propellor-like breasts which were propped up like two round canteloupes on her chest.

My second thought, "Man, that's a whole lotta boob."

This woman would've had cleavage in a turtleneck sweater.

Of course, there was a tattoo on her left breast, that read, "BabyDoll" in a hard to decipher, garbly cursive script of some sort.
I want everyone to know, that all of this... the height, the dress, the breasts...the tattoo.
All of those things....I could deal with, but I looked down and happened to notice...Amazon Titties wasn't wearing any shoes ,and it looked as though centuries had passed since she last cut her toenails.

A recap, my friends:

Not only,was the bitch dressed like an oversized zebra in heat...
Not only, was she in a restaraunt without shoes...
She had fuckin slasher blades on her phalanges!!!

However, even with her plunging neckline and the way she ate the food off of her plate as she meandered around the buffet line, I still refrained from putting her in the Window Licker category...at first.

As Amazon Titties was leaving the restaraunt, I saw that she carried in her hand... dirty, white Crocs.