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All take and no give, a relatively dramatic take on life

I am bathing in negativity. I liken my current state to one of those Ancient Roman bath-houses where everyone you know went, literally every body in the same place, all bathing at the same time. Everyone washing their dirt and their troubles into the same water you have your toes dipped into.

Or in more modern day dilemma, I am surrounded by others peoples dirty laundry. It begins to weigh on a person like a cotton clothes line full of wet jeans in the summer. If only I had a tall stick to prop myself up like we did the line when I was a kid. Whatever to keep the freshly laundered wares from touching the dirt below.

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So here is the story. I have excluded names and specifics to protect the innocent, including myself from even more drama.

 There are some people in our life, distanced by geography but not by the heart. Some of those people are also distanced by societal standards, measurable success,  and obvious happiness. I feel it necessary here to add that I fully believe in the power of self worth. I have truly believed my entire adult life that if you raise your children to believe in themselves, to be independent and if you teach them to not take advantage of others they will grow into responsible adults.

I understood that responsible parents would have responsible children.   Those who were not so much would be dealing with adults who were co-dependent leeches on society.

I was so wrong.  Amazing people can and do produce offspring which turn out to be unproductive, unwilling and general drains to those around them. These are the people in ancient times which would have floated their misery in the bath-houses to infect everyone else. Those who by simply being in the wrong place at the wrong time would come out more filthy than when they entered.

It appears that indeed a family can raise children which become so entirely different from one another that the drama and discord turn everything to black. The envy and cruelty become abundant as the differences become more apparent. It seems not that we can be happy for another but we should rather destroy what we can not / do not have. I stand utterly corrected and equally confused.

The more success and happiness one has the more separate and desperate the attempts become from others to destroy it. I loathe the phrase “he/ she thinks they are better than me/us” … if someone makes you feel this way without an outright just cause it is very likely your own insecurities. 

How can it be that we will hurt someone with the same blood in their veins simply for their willingness to put in the hard work to succeed on their own merit?

I do not understand how a family raised in the same place, by the same people could grow to adulthood as such different members of society. What I do have an understanding of is those who bully are generally those who feel their own self worth to be less. The fact still amazes me that those who feel less than worthy in their own right would not stand up to achieve what others have for themselves.

Why would someone actively make a choice not to work hard, in their education or career or even in their relationships? Why not put that negative ENERGY into following the path or patterns proven and demonstrated possible? What stops you from forging your own success story? Is it just easier to lean onto others and throw rocks at those busy building, exploring and developing a life well lived while you sit behind by your own choice?

All these options and still some have chosen instead to shade those who earned their happy place. 

While it would seem the logical thing to do is to ignore the drama filled water I am afraid someday we will be swallowed by the waves of cruelty and drowned by it. What I would much prefer is a harmonious existence. I will not dare ask for relative peace but if we could just all learn to get along, for ourselves and for the sake of others, everyone would be in a much better place.

 

 

 

 

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Another lesbian love letter … happy birthday my love

My one, my truth, my reason for idiotic bliss. I cherish this, your birthday as I have the others who have come before with as much awe and honor as I ever have.

You never cease to amaze me as we grow older, year by year and side by side.

The first birthday we shared I brought you the wrong gift but with all the right intention. You were so sweet about it all, I was embarrassed but glad to be with you.

My crush weighed so heavily on my brain I could barely remember to wrap your gifts.

Since your last birthday we never spent a night alone. You were next to me for cake and ice cream, for laughing until we cried and for beer on beaches. For every sweet moment in between.

My crush still weighs heavily and at times I can barely speak.

Sometimes it is all I can do, I stare in wonder and amazement that you are here with me. No miles to distance us. No goodbye need ever be long.

I am honored to spend this day, the birthdays previous and the days to come celebrating you. Your laugh and your smile. Your kindness and your generosity. Your strength and your courage. I admire you.

I am in awe of your ability to tackle anything that comes our way with strength and wisdom. You surprise me each passing year with your passion and commitment to our little family. I am moved by your beautiful gaze and am transported by your touch.

 

 

My pride, my lover, my best friend and my destiny. I have never been more grateful to be in your company.

Happy 41st my love, my gorgeous. My darling wife.

I adore you more than words will ever say.

 

 

 

Mothers Day in a new light

Today is the first day of May.

Today is the first full month of 2018 that I feel somewhat less lost as a mother, as a daughter and as a woman.

I have grown children, and teenage children, and fur children. I have a wife who I have been accused of treating like a child on occasion. Nobody is perfect, judgmental Judy.

I even have feathered children (I love those little cluckers).

I know, I look way too young to have grown children, thank you for thinking it.

The fact is I do. The oldest are adults, adulting in a grown up world far from my nest.

In case you need a quick refresher note here is a mini version of my sorta-adult life:

A long time ago in a land far away there was a young “know it all teenager” who found herself pregnant and stupid. She married her boyfriend, bought a house with a white picket fence added in a couple dogs and had everything but happiness.

More ridiculous things happened in the middle. Blah, blah, blah …

Fast forward 20 something years and that stupid teenager is a self proclaimed wise(r) woman. She made mistakes. She fell down alot, skinned her knees and nearly broke her neck emotionally and mentally. Eventually that lost girl found her happiness. She distanced herself from her own mother for fouls of a personal nature for years but has since, very recently, found forgiveness. Her grown children are distanced now, not by spite but by miles and sparse communication.

For all of my woes there is a light in distance, there is a summer plan to bring all of my people to the same harmonious place.

By harmony I mean grass and lawn chairs, sipping cold beverages and cheering on a game of corn hole or horse shoes. There will be laughter and loud voices, there will be barking dogs and trash talk. There will be breezes to blow the smoke from the grill.

There will be a stillness inside me finally even in the midst of reunion chaos.

Mothers Day may come in mid May but I am celebrating a little earlier. For the first time in a long time I have something entirely and unexpectedly related to extended family to look forward to.

Something that isn’t a surprise pile of dog poo in the hallway in the middle of the night when I get up to pee.

Something not related to a bag of cheese puffs in the pantry with a single cheesy puff left in the bottom of the bag.

Something uncommonly good to look forward to. Something not at all like a field trip leaving tomorrow at 4 in the morning which I learned about the night before.

Nope. Something really, really good.

Something great is on the horizon. A Happy Mothers Day indeed.

 

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Get contacts they said … it will be easier they said

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A first time wearer of contact lenses tale of terror.

 

This week I made a decision. Well actually I couldn’t make a decision which leads me to this story. I went to get new glasses and I asked if I wanted contacts or glasses. I hesitated and before I knew it I said “both”  which sounds about right for me.

Bacon or sausage? Fries or onion rings? Pink or blue?

 

I always want both. ALWAYS.

This time though it was going to cost me. Financially, mentally and physically.

My original appointment went something like this:

Cover your right eye, what line can you read?

HUH? lines? what lines?

Cover your left eye, what line can you read now?

UH. just write a big letter on poster board, ok? we both know I can’t see these lines.

So clearly I needed to do something more permanent than wearing glasses sometimes. The time has come.
I asked about how long the follow -up appointment might last as I had to be to work that morning.  “45 minutes, usually, depending on how quickly you can learn to put in / take out your new contacts”

Not so bad, right?

This was going to be easy. Little did I know.

I have never worn contacts. I barely wear my glasses, not because I don’t need them but because they are always dirty or I can’t find them. I am a walking disaster.

I arrived to my appointment and sat down to be presented with my new contacts, a mirror and an instructor across from me to teach me the basics. I tried to get the first contact out of the mini liquid bath without success. Never have I ever felt more like a lumbering giant then when I was trying to fish a teeny little floppy bowl out of a mini container with my giant finger.

Lets say it took awhile.

So then I have it. Perched on my finger tip, aimed at my now pried open eyeball. There was no looking back. I aimed straight for my right eye and blinked just before the contact could secure to the destination point.

I didn’t know this at the time. I had no idea. I smiled. I was excited. I looked up at the tech waiting for praise. Look at me! I thought I had it.

Nope.

I looked in the mirror and it had folded in half and was stuck to my eyelashes. Like a clump of glue on Pre-K macaroni art. Right there on my freaking lashes.

So I tried again.

I rinsed the flakes of mascara off, and again pointed the saucer at my eye. After what was probably a dozen failed tries, 1 torn contact and a battered, red eye the unthinkable happened.

That contact popped out and bounced off my face like a dodge ball off fat kids head.

Where that little sucker landed was a mystery for a very uncomfortable few minutes.

I was searching everywea34ca7b7e40099a061ef3572269ea0053afadf123b148bba59e21f7449996cfhere. One eye half closed and watering like I had been in a freak accident and one eye bloodshot and battered but with the contact in place. I looked in my lap, nothing. I checked in the folds of my cardigan, natta. Peaked super classy like in the cleavage of my cami tank. No contact there either.

One of the techs got on all fours while I flailed about like the losing figher in an MMA match, one contact in and faced contorted with embarrassment. I wasn’t sure whether it was appropriate to laugh or to cry. I did neither. I rinsed that rogue lense super well and with determination stuck it in, wiggled it around and called it done.

I was so proud. 

I was also terrified.

The tech said I had to take them out now. At this point I gave up on trying to be lady like. I had had enough torture. If this was a survival plot to save my life surely I would be dead by now.

Taking them out was easy. I did it. I put them in their little case and tightened the caps.

Because I am a coward the next thing I did was the only thing I could.

I put my glasses on and left with my head held low.

Rooster for breakfast

We are traveling. It’s an anniversary/ Valentine’s tradtion for us and this year is a big one. 5 years of mostly bliss.

This morning was a wee less than blissful. By morning I mean 2 AM.

We are in Knoxville, TN on our way to Lexington, KY to watch her beloved Wildcats play at Rupp Arena today. Last night I feel asleep and it was silent. I woke up to a stange sound. I thought it was a child maybe in the room above ours. It seemed muffled, and it had a strange tone with short bursts followed by odd quiet before it started again. Each period lasted seconds between intervals. Like an annoying chime or alarm.

I didn’t open my eyes, I just laid still and listened for footsteps. Surely someone would sooth this fussing baby. No foot steps above or beside us. The sound and silence intervals continued. I woke up enough to really process what was happening. It was a rooster. Not only was this bird making noise somewhere in or around the hotel it was doing it in the middle of the night.

Surely this was a toy or someone’s cell phone. Soon it will stop. It better stop. I will make it stop.

Lets be real here. I wouldn’t. I barely got up to check the time and stumble to the bathroom.

I laid half asleep, half awake and totally annoyed listening to this cockadoodle prankster. I rolled over and stared at my sleeping wife, she was totally unaware there was a nuisance nearby. I laid there pondering whether to wake her and ask if she heard it too. Decidedly she couldn’t as she was snoring away. Seemed rude to wake her on our mini vaca just to make her listen to the rooster with me. If we were home I would have shaken her awake and demanded she listen and harass her about whether she could hear it too, whether it was live or a toy and whether I should go hunt it down and murder it.

I do things like that. Remember how I said “5 years of mostly bliss” ? Yeah.

At some point I slept in short bursts but woke every time the damn rooster started again. At about 6AM my sweetheart innocently woke up to car door slamming outside. She finally heard it.

Like it just started.

Like it hadn’t been going on for 4 hours now. Like I didn’t know.

Like I had been asleep all night like she had.

Guess what she did immediately?

She woke me up telling me she heard a bird. A rooster, she thought. I wanted to smother her with the feather pillows.

She showered, dressed and walked outside to see the rooster in a tree. Just sitting there. Right outside our room watching people flip it the bird and cuss it. My darling was apparently the only person this side of town to sleep last night. She’s amused everyone else wants to cause the thing bodily harm. Myself included.

Just when everyone is finally up the damn thing LEFT. It just disappeared. I don’t how rooster tastes for breakfast and I guess I won’t know anytime soon since we have to get on the road to Kentucky.

*before I get hate mail I am an animal lover. I don’t want harm to come to the rogue rooster but I do love me some wings.

Breakfast with the boy. Mom, the kitchens on fire.

On occasion I take my kids on breakfast dates. The time over a meal we share is priceless. It’s a mommy and me session with a teenager, one on one time without arguing kids. It’s lovely.

Plus there is coffee. I need that in my life.

Today it was my son’s turn. He was able to pick the place, had to be local but still anyplace he wanted. I do the same for my daughter and she usually picks someplace with real menus. Nice places with fancy pancake options and flavored coffee with frothy tops. The places with real napkins and actual eating utensils. With servers and a laid back, take your time, savor your freshly squeezed orange juice, atmosphere.

Not my boy though.

No. Not this time. He wanted a breakfast burrito stuffed with every animal available on the morning menu topped with eggs and cheese. He a added a side of deep fried potato and a fountain soda to make it “perfection” … sure kid.

A plastic, paper lined basket filled with food sure to clog his arteries some day. I’m not complaining. Not even a little. For under $20 I had a date with my youngest child. The one most like me most days, sarcastic and inquisitive. He makes me laugh and he also makes me want to sell him on the black market. Sometimes both in the same day.

We sat in the way back chowing down in mostly content silence. Occasionally giving each other dirty looks when all of a sudden from the back kitchen we hear someone yelling.

It was mostly words we couldn’t make out in frantic voices.

“Fire!” We heard that one loud and clear.

We looked at each other, mouths full of burrito and wondered if it meant what we thought it meant. There was more yelling before he swallowed his bite and wondered out loud if we should take our breakfast to go.

I gazed out the window at the miserable rain and chilly air and sighed deeply. Weighing my options there was but a single choice.

I decided it was probably just a small manageable issue.

Kitchens have fires all the time. There was no alarm going off so I thought it was probably fine to continue to sip my soda calmly.

It was then a member of the staff ran from the kitchen to grab an extinguisher from the counter under the register. I mention this to the boy in comical amazement. He seems to be much more aware of danger than I. He turns to me and asks if it was “probably protocol to evacuate customers when there was a fire” which really is a good question.

We pondered this for a good 3 minutes before a frazzled woman in a restaurant uniform wearing a crooked headset booked it out the front door. She didn’t make eye contact and didn’t stop to say a word to patrons eating in the dining room.

We declared it clearly wasn’t a thing. There would be no evacuation. Whatever had happened in that back kitchen stayed there. Like Vegas but with eggs and bacon. We can only wonder what poor sap was served a charcoal biscuit.

What exactly the employee did with that extinquisher and why exactly there was no concern to leave the building is still a mystery.

All I know is it may be a little while before I feel the need to conquer a burrito for breakfast. Our next date most surely will be in an establishment with forks.

We might ask about the protocol in the event of a fire too. You know, just in case.

For the love of Poo-pourri . A public bathroom story.

I should just warn you now. This is going to be a little much for some of you.

You might have read the title and thought “Oh, she isn’t going to go there.” Oh but yes. Yes. I am.

It all started innocently enough. I rushed into the bathroom with a need to release my bladder or suffer wet pants. I stormed the main door and took an immediate right to see someone coming out of the first stall door. The perfect opportunity to snag a private potty with no wait time. Yes.

I apologized to the lady I nearly shoved out the way in my bee line. She was just exiting the itty bitty potty closet I intended to enter.

I remarked casually after my apology “perfect timing though, huh?” I said it more so to make things less awkward but it got worse.

She replied to me beyond the closed door as she walked to the sink. It took me a few seconds to process what it was she said ….

“I wouldn’t say so”

… she said it in almost in a sing song kind of voice. It haunts me now.

You know the tone. The one you use when you threaten your children in public places when and don’t want the general population to hear you become monster mommy. The sweet feminine tone you use when you want to appear nice but your saying something awful.

Then it hit me.

Not what she said but the stench. Oh. My. Glade. The stench of a fresh poo lingering with a 2 second spray of something sorta resembling old flowers.

I realized it all too late though.

I was already halfway into pee stance.

No turning back.

All I could do was hold my breath and hope I didn’t pass out with my pants down.

It hit me like a train. The fear, the stench, the sing song way she didn’t even warn me until it was too late. My thoughts raced.

It felt like that one time I fell down the stairs in 4 inch heels and got up quickly before anyone realized what I had done. I walked away like nothing happened, head low and drink spilled but dignity intact.

This time however I couldn’t just get up and run away. The next woman in there would think that I did it.

I needed a plan and quick. So while holding my breath I finished what I came to do, pulled myself together and did the only thing I could. I sprayed the crap out of that stall (literally) while the toilet was flushing so nobody would think I had to spray my own stink away.

Listen, I know poo stinks. I’m not saying mine doesn’t. Everybody goes number two. I get it. I’m just saying maybe make your “New Years Resolution” could should be to do the number two less in public. New year, new you kinda thing.

I’m talking to you, habitual office pooper.

Or at least poo less in small places.

Or maybe at least spray. Glade, Renuzut, Lysol … the perfume in your purse maybe?

Ok, fine. At least be a pal and issue a warning. We both know it’s the least you can do.