advice you didn’t know you needed: bodily fluids edition

Hey feed readers, come on over see my color change. No more bleeding pink and red!*

I’m going to give you all a few pieces of unasked for advice today. And you WILL thank me for it later.

Um. If you’re squeamish, or a man, you might want to go ahead and leave right now.

  1. Okay ladies, we all know when we’re getting a UTI, right? We don’t need no stinkin’ medical degree to tell us this diagnosis. Ahem. But sometimes it’s the weekend and it’s snowing and you just don’t wanna** go sit at the walk-in clinic all day just so you can pee in a cup and they can tell you what you already knew. Right?! So you start researching home remedies on the dear ole Google. Well let me just tell you right now, if you run across the one about dissolving a teaspoon of baking soda in some water and drinking it (because it changes the ph of your pee and all that) just keep in mind that this concoction is ALSO a home remedy for CONSTIPATION.*** But they don’t tell you that part. Until the stomach cramps start and you start Googling other uses for baking soda because you think you might have just poisoned yourself. That’s when you find out about baking soda super-quick (!) laxative effect. Except now YOU know and you didn’t have to learn it the hard way. Like me. I’m ready for my colonoscopy now. Yeesh.
  2. You guys! I warned you to stop reading.
  3. Moving on, those of us with kids know that pukage is an eventuality. Yes? I mean some kids hurl a lot and some not so much. If your kid is like mine and you can’t remember the last time he puked then I have some words of wisdom for you.**** He/she will not have the puking instinct! He won’t know it’s coming and he won’t even come close to thinking he should run for the bathroom, EVEN though you’ve said repeatedly “If you have to throw up there’s a bucket next to your bed, but can you please try to get to the toilet?!” No. No. No. He will instead come to your room, complain his stomach hurts, and proceed to climb in your bed. You will then have to basically shove him off your brand new comforter that doesn’t fit in your washing machine and bodily throw him toward the bathroom. He will then miss the bathroom (the first time anyway) and spew across the rug. I think we all know who HE is. Hint: Josh.
  4. For those of you with a cat and/or dog, fyi, the above applies to them as well. I really hate my carpets yo.
  5. And last but not least! When dealing with a 5 day, 7 day, 10 day long snot-filled MAN COLD in your house, just go ahead and get him a humidifier and every single kind of cold/flu remedy available asap. In fact, just go buy it all now in anticipation of the MAN COLD. It will save you all pain and suffering later. Oh, and buy extra trash bags for the enormous volume of tissues the Man will use.*****

We are all FINE now, so we don’t need get-well wishes. I just felt it best to share my recent experiences with you so you could enjoy them as much as I did. You’re welcome!

* I still want a full redesign but this will do for now! I don’t have the skills myself, nor the money to hire it out, and Damon doesn’t have the time to do all that. But I swear I’m going to learn how…maybe next year.

**You have to read that with a little whine in your inner voice. It helps.

*** LAXATIVES and IBS DO NOT MIX. EVER.

****I want to say that the last time Josh threw up was at least five years ago but it really has been so long that I can’t remember. I know, we were totally due.

*****It’s really snot funny. Oh, wait, yes it is. And I hope he doesn’t read this.

on death, you know, that thing we don’t talk about

I have had every intention of writing here over the last few days but I just haven’t been able to get the words down. You see, Sunday was the first anniversary of my father’s passing. It just really sucks to write about so I’ve been avoiding this space. Of course, there’s no way to avoid actually thinking. I can’t shut off my brain as easily as I can my computer.

It is easy enough not to talk about it though. Most people don’t really want to discuss death and dying. It’s too messy, too hurtful. It hits too close to the heart, so we gloss over it. I’m fine, I’m fine, we all say, rather than speak the truth, that a piece of you is missing, gone forever. We’ve all experienced it, haven’t we? So why the silence? It’s because hearing about someone else’s pain makes us think of our own. A grandparent or parent lost, or some other dearly loved one. Avoid. Avoid. Mortality bites.

I believe would all rather think of death in generic terms. Sad events happening in far off places are easier to cry over than cancer in the house. I can bawl at a sappy scene in a movie but real life hospital rooms and funeral parlors just make me numb. I can only assume I’m not alone in doing that since no one actually speaks of such things.

Well, at this moment I’d like to speak of my father but it’s easier to write it here than to say any of it aloud. Who was he? A father of seven, he was Pop to us. A husband of 50 years, yes, they made it to 50 last August, with three-ish months to spare. Grandfather of 17, soon to be 18, and with them Pop became Pepere. Catholic, always and forever. Engineer, artist extraordinaire, fixer of all things. He and flawed and kind and wonderful. I say all of this because these words describe him, but yet he was so much more than a few nouns and adjectives. He was the sum of years of 77 years of life, and love, and light.

I can’t look at a sunset and not imagine him painting it. I can’t pick up the phone and not yearn to call him. I can’t go to their house without glancing at his chair, expecting to see him reading, or well, snoring there. I can’t hold a broken electrical anything and not laugh at how he would have stashed it away for parts. I can’t help but for wish we’d had more time with him, for myself, and for my son. I can’t stand it, no, I hate it that he’s dead. Dammit.

So.

I hope you don’t think I’m crazy or depressed. (Well maybe a little crazy but not so much certifiably.) Sometimes grief just looks like this. It ebbs and it flows like the tides, and it’s not a bad thing to let it loose once in awhile.

Now, if you’ve made it this far, you could do me a favor; don’t tell me how sorry you are. I know you’re sorry. You can’t read this kind of a brain dump and not feel some sadness. Instead, I’d rather you tell me a little something about someone you’ve loved, and and miss, and hardly ever talk about. Even though it hurts. Writing it down helps, I swear.

In return, I’ll show you one of my father’s paintings, one of my favorites:

and one of my recent photos:

Sunsets. It’s a family thing.

me vs. the driveway

It has become my nemesis. Always covered in ice, snow, slush. You name it and I’m shoveling it. Today was no different. Not enough snow to use the snow blower and too much to leave there to melt on its own. Two inches of wet, heavy, heart attack snow. Fat globs of slush plop on my neck from overhanging branches. A foot of dirt and ice clog the entrance, left there by accomplice plows. My shoulders scream for mercy but my arch enemy won’t let me rest. It’s me or the driveway. One of us isn’t going to make it out of this winter alive.

ps. Anyone have a jackhammer I can borrow? Um. No reason.

brainstorming always comes back to the cat puke

You know how right before you fall asleep you think of something so totally freaking brilliant you’re sure you’re going to remember it in the morning? And you wake up and don’t even remember you thought of something much less what that something actually is. I swear that’s why I haven’t written anything here for weeks. I always come up with great topic around 11pm. When I was a newbie blogger I would actually get up and write it out as soon as I thought of it, and then I would hit publish at 2am and no one would read it. By the next day I was happy that no one had read it because my middle of the night ramblings were never quite as good as I thought they were going to be. Usually I wrote stuff about cat puke. Wait, that’s not a good example because cat puke is actually funny. Unless you’re the one cleaning it up. Or stepping in it. Especially when it’s cold. And the ickyness of it makes you hop around on one foot, in the dark, when your muscles are already screaming at you because you went to Zumba the day before. Okay that didn’t really happen. Stepping in the cat puke after Zumba that is. That was a hypothetical situation that I made up to illustrate the typical things that befall me. Stepping in the cold cat puke in the middle of the night was actually 2 weeks ago, and well, the week before that too. Going to Zumba was only a few days ago, and although I couldn’t walk for days I laughed my butt off while I was there. If only that were true, right? That you could actually laugh until your butt fell off? I would be sooo dang skinny. But then I wouldn’t need to go to Zumba. And I wouldn’t be able to laugh with my friends there. And then I wouldn’t be skinny anymore. It’s a vicious, vicious cycle I tell you. Obviously Zumba is bad and I need to get my exercise some other way. Like shoveling the driveway. Which I am certain to have to do again tomorrow. Because of course it’s going to snow again, again, again. And January is never going to end. And I am going to have to rake the stupid roof one more time and my arms will fall off and we’ll get killer icicles. I won’t be able to defend myself from the killer icicles because I won’t have any arms and that is much, much worse than not having a butt. In conclusion, snow is even worse than Zumba and the only good thing about this post was the cat puke.

And I didn’t even write this in the middle of the night.

Go ahead I dare you to comment.

snippets

I’m going to tell you one little fact that speaks volumes about my life right now; I just *now* (as in this morning) took the Christmas lights down off of my front porch.

~ahem~

Of course, the 5 strings of lights are now wadded up in a ball on my kitchen table and I hope to do something about that before the week day is over. That something will probably be be to stuff the whole thing in a Target bag and throw it in the garage to deal with next November! (At which time I will curse at myself, and go buy new ones.)

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I’m sitting at my desk surrounded by paperwork, books, and Legos. I can’t move from my chair for the amount of work hanging over my head. And when I have a moment to stand up and stretch I step on Bionicles and bruise the poor soles of my feet. Sheesh. I’m on a tight deadline with one rush project, and have two more looming. Work is good to have, but well, yeah. Their vacation was not my vacation. I cannot tell you how glad I am that our so-called vacation is over!

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On Tuesdays I volunteer at the school library. Mostly I put away books, hundreds of pounds of books. I’m also the checkout girl, making sure they’ve brought back their overdue books before they get another, that sort of thing. Sometimes they ask me to help them find just the perfect book. And once I got to read to a first grade class. (They even listened!)

Some of the fourth graders laugh at me because I’m terrible with names. They try to make me guess who they are. I see the same kids over and over, every Tuesday, bright, smiling faces of kids who want to be in the library, who clearly love to read, who get as many books as they can every week. I love it there, even if their names escape me, their happiness doesn’t.

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Today is Tuesday! I get to ignore the pings of emails, silence the ringer on my cell, and forget about the Christmas lights on my kitchen table. I get to go to the library.

I’m not gone, I just have blogger block

My brain is mush. I just can’t think of anything interesting to write about.

I had wonderful company (my friend Teresa while her husband Bill is in Ethiopia!) last weekend but that would be a very long story. I have more company (one of my sisters – yay!) coming this weekend but that story hasn’t happened yet. I have an aunt who is very sick but that’s not my story to tell.

I held a day-old baby on Monday but I had to give her back. 😉 I have weigh-in coming this Sunday but I don’t think I’ve lost a pound this month. Josh is going to start t-ball tomorrow so the time suck begins again. I tried to go without wheat for a week, and I keep forgetting.

The rain is keeping me from gardening. Work is slow this week, although I’m sure it will get busy just as soon as my sister arrives. I’m not entertained by anything on tv. Twitter is irritating me – too many retweets, celebrities, and promotions, blech. Whatever happened to original thought and conversation?

I’m more than a little cranky. And worried. Very tired. Not to mention restless, boring, and repetitive. And perhaps whiny? Geez, I really need to get over myself. And I need to find my funny. It seems to have run away from home.

Yeah. I’m all over the freaking place. Give me something to write about would you? An idea, a question, anything you want to know about me? Help. I need to blog through the block.

life’s little irritations #10

Insomnia. And all the wonderful things that go along with it. Including but not limited to:

Then there are the actual causes of the insomnia:

So then there are the actual things that are in my head that won’t stop spinning. These are each tiny irritations in of themselves, but all balled up together create one big aneurysm of an irritation. The kind of stuff you know you can do nothing about, that there are no solutions for, especially at 4 am and yet you can’t stopping thinking about them but if you don’t your brain is going to explode.

It’s occurred to me more than once that if I could just stop needing to pee in the middle of the night I could avoid the majority of my sleepless nights. Other than actual dehydration, I have yet to find a solution for that though.

Anyway, here I am, wondering if it’s possible that writing all this down will now allow my mind to vacate all thoughts so I can lay down and go back to sleep…except…now I have to be up in one hour 45 minutes 30 minutes. Crud. I have to pee again.

crazy crazy day

Edited to add

irony? don’tcha think?

So I had to drop off the boy at t-ball this evening and then I had to go to a meeting. I didn’t have time to go home and get dinner, nor did I even have time to buy a decent meal. But there was no way I was going to a freaking town council meeting with an empty stomach. (Don’t even ask why I was there, but I’m pretty sure me and my cohort were prominently displayed on the local cable access channel. Yikes.)

Anyway, my solution was to stop at a convenience store, grab a bag of chips and a soda, (and a powerball ticket, but shhh, don’t tell dh!) and eat it in the parking lot. Now, if I ate said chips and drank said soda WHILE reading Bon Appetit magazine, is that true irony, or is it Alanis Morissette not really irony kind of irony?

I just realized, I really hate that song. Why did I write a post with that in it? Now that’s ironic. Right?

[edited to add: HELP ME. NOW THAT FRIGGING SONG IS STUCK IN MY HEAD. and I’m very sorry if it’s stuck in yours now too.]

faux pas x2

I promised myself I wouldn’t blog today until I was showered, the boy was fed and dressed, and the kitchen was actually clean. Done. (Well, really I promised that to myself yesterday. Did you notice I didn’t post yesterday??)

I’ve been working this thing over in my mind last few days, and now I think it’s time to spew it up before it festers. You know how that is, right? I know you do, some of you have admitted it before!

So I went to a bridal shower for a cousin on Sunday. I sat at a table with a few other cousins and one of my sisters. These are cousins I only see at weddings and showers and anniversary parties, but when we do get together we always have lots of laughs. This occasion was no different.

However. I committed two of the worst sins of mommyhood.

Do you know what those are? Don’t we all?

First, I asked a married, childless woman when she’s gonna have a baby. <<hides in shame>> Oh, yes I did.

Second, I regaled a poor pregnant woman with horrors of childbirth. <<blushing furiously>> Yes, I did that too.

Well, okay, to defend myself about the first. I’ve had the baby conversation with that particular cousin before, and not always of my doing. (I think?) I just shouldn’t have said anything in front of the rest of the table. No wait. I shouldn’t have said it at all! I did take my opportunity to apologize later, in the car, and we had a long discussion about that sort of thing. (We went to the event together.) She was genuinely sweet about it, and we had a great time otherwise, and discovered a mutual love of gardening. But dang, it’s still just hanging over my head.

The thing is, I was married for seven years before we had a baby. People asked me the “when” question quite often for all those years. I was never really offended, but my reason for at least the first 5 years – we will when we have a house – was always countered with “if you wait until your financially ready, you’ll never do it.” That’s what always annoyed me, because I didn’t believe it was true. I felt like it was irresponsible of me to have a baby when I was young and in debt. If we had had an accidental baby, that would have been one thing, we would have dealt with it and we would have been okay. But to plan on a child, when I knew I could not afford it, just didn’t seem right. Not only that, but since I’ve had one child, there have been multitudes of queries about when I’ll have another. Um. Never. Someday I’ll tell you about that.

I’m digressing, as usual. My point is, everyone has their own reasons for not having a baby, and I am well aware of that – yet I asked anyway! It was one of those time when my mouth worked before my brain had a chance to stop it. Foot in mouth disease. Today I resolve to never try to never do that again.

In defense of faux pas #2, <sigh> all I can say is, I wasn’t the only one, and I didn’t start it. Hmm, not a great excuse huh? This dumbass totally jumped on the bandwagon! That poor thing. She was a little pale at one point, so I did try to stop it, but she kept saying “It’s okay, I need to know these things!”

Actually, we didn’t say anything horrific, really, I swear. I kept back the really bad stuff! Heh. I only tried to impart my only good advice to any new mom to-be, however she becomes a mom: nothing ever goes as planned, so better not to plan too much and you won’t be disappointed. I learned that the hard way myself. Read my birth story and you’ll know what I mean.

In any case, I did apologize to her later as well, knowing we had gone too far. I now resolve to find a chance, before September, to have another conversation with her about all the good things about being a mom!

Phew. I feel better. Thanks for letting me get that out. So, you do have any etiquette blunder regrets you need to get out? Sing it sisters!

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