Category Archives: random

Tired

Photo by Nadia, via Flickr

Photo by Nadia, via Flickr

7:56 AM

I can’t breathe.

I don’t mean that in a figurative sense (though clearly, I’m not taking a whole lot of figurative deep breaths either)

I mean I literally can’t breathe, thanks to the cold that took residence a week and a half ago and seems to have no plans to vacate.

I’m a mouth-breather.

With the chapped lips to prove it.

And there’s the cough and the runny nose and the coughing and snoring 8 year old who’s been sleeping beside me, and the coughing and snoring 42 year old who’s also been sleeping beside me.

And the dog with diarrhea – which really has nothing to do with a cold, and is a just another small part of the whole reason I am not sleeping again.

Or still.

Is “again” really the right word when I haven’t really slept for as long as I can remember?

I almost said in “forever”, but forever’s almost never a fair word, and I’m pretty sure I slept when I was a kid.

I’m not allowed to complain about the dog, because he’s not supposed to be here in the first place.

He was a stray, abandoned on a desert dirt road.  And I didn’t know it at the time, but I needed him, just as much as he needed me.

We didn’t choose him.  But he chose me.  I saved him from the harsh desert, but really…. he saved me.

And now he has diarrhea.

I’m tired, so very tired, and only partly because of the diarrhea.

And the cold.

And the lack of sleep.

And the lack of breathing.

It’s mostly because my brain Doesn’t.  Stop.  Thinking.

At all.  Ever.

My therapist tells me I shouldn’t expect an on/off switch (which is good, because I’m certain such a thing doesn’t exist, at least not for me)

He does say that I should be able to dial it down though.

I think he’s lying.

Or my dial is broken.

BROKEN, I tell you.

It’s forever stuck – except forever’s almost never a fair word – stuck on the highest setting.

Like the Vitamix, when you flip it up all the way up to that mega setting that shows it you mean business.

The one that makes your teeth rattle, and keep your hand on the cover for fear that your banana berry Jamba Juice smoothie knock-off is going to end up all over the damn kitchen ceiling.

Only instead of blending up a banana berry Jamba Juice smoothie knock-off, my brain is blending up a soup of regret, and hope, and worry, and problem solving, and wondering, and religion and politics and pop culture and the kids and the pets, and the thing I said to my best friend’s brother when I was seven, and the mistake I made when I was 22, and my to-do list for the next 24 hours and the next 24 years, and the question of whether or not I’ll even be given another 24 years, or hours.

I want to dial it down.

I do.  I DO.

But I don’t know how.

And so I do the only thing I know to do and I sit.

And I drink my coffee and I try to breathe.

Except I can’t breathe thanks to the cold that took residence a week and a half ago and seems to have no plans to vacate.

I’m a mouth-breather.

And I’m tired.

8:06 AM


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Monday Musings

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I have trouble with Mondays.

You’d think that as a stay-at-home parent, Mondays wouldn’t be as difficult.  I mean, it’s not like I have to get up and get out the door for another work week.  But they’re still…. hard.  Having to get back to the real world after having had a partner home all weekend, having to get back to adulting after what was (ideally anyway) a weekend of fun, having to get the housework back under control, and having to finally deal with all the emails and appointments and grownup things I’ve put off as long as I can.  The to-do list looms large, and the energy with which to tackle it is low.

So, I decided to try something new, and purge all the random Monday thoughts that are distracting me into a nice, tidy little blog post.  (And maybe some of you would like to Monday Muse with me??)

Here then are five random things that are cluttering my brain this Monday morning*, and keeping me from Doing All The Things.

1.  I’m even more sleep-deprived than normal, because I was up multiple times with the dog with diarrhea.  (To be clear, the dog has diarrhea, not me)  It might have been five times, but it could have been seven or eight.  I sort of stopped counting after the third or fourth time.

2.  I almost pulled down my Facebook page four separate times this weekend.  I’m working hard to not be so quick with my trigger finger, and instead take a step back for some perspective before I react.  Because ironically, this is a season that I was all set to spend more time on my blog, not less.  And taking out the whole Facebook piece would not have been very helpful in that regard.

3.  I’ve been on an elimination diet for a month now, both as a last ditch effort before I see another doctor who tells me, “I don’t know what the heck is wrong with you, but I’d be happy to refer you to a specialist”, and in response to all the friends and family who keep telling me that I just need to eat better.  For over four weeks now, I’ve had no gluten, no dairy, no sugar, no soy, no nuts, no citrus, no caffeine, no alcohol, no red meat…  Basically, I’ve purposely been avoiding some of my very favorite things.  The impact it’s had on my symptoms?  Zero. No change whatsoever.  Does that sound grumpy?  It’s because I’m grumpy.  I blame it on the lack of caffeine.  And frustration.  But mostly the caffeine.

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4.  I’ve been walking.  I can’t do anything more strenuous than walking at the moment, and actually, there are for sure days where even walking is too much. But if I can do it, I do it.  I like walking, especially if I can do it in the desert.  A half an hour alone in the desert with my headphones, and I’m like a new person.  I like to walk with Mike too, but since walking’s my therapy, I tend to vent slash complain slash verbally spew on him when we’re walking so it might not be as fun for him as it is for me.

5.  20160314_174904I had a problem.  I was running out of space for my books.  I cull them as often as I can, but you know, some books you just NEED to keep.  I told Mike my problem, and last weekend we went to Ikea for a new bookshelf.  I obviously still have a lot of books to transfer over, but I am taking my time, dusting everything off, getting it all organized.  The project has made me sublimely happy.

How nice if all problems were so easy to solve!

*  I started this post at about 7:00 in the morning, and it’s now after 6:00 in the evening.  Because… Mondays.  But tomorrow is Tuesday and I’m home all day.

I have big plans to play Minecraft with my girl, and eventually I’ll start looking at that to-do list.

After a good night’s sleep with hopefully a whole lot less diarrhea.

 


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Introverts on the Vegas Strip

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Last week at this time, my whole family was in Las Vegas, Nevada.  The kids and I tagged along on a business trip, with big plans to enjoy the pool, the free breakfast every morning, and the free happy hour every night (the bartenders were lovely and wonderful too… recognizing all six of us and remembering all of our chosen drinks after the very first night)

We were able to catch up with my cousins, one of whom was like another member of the family to us when we used to babysit her several days a week up until she was one.  She’s four now, and beautiful, and Tegan’s new BFF and honorary little sister.  We had a great time getting reacquainted, and spent several hours playing at the Children’s Discovery Museum, which turned out to be the best children’s museum I’ve ever gone to in my life.  We had a wonderful late lunch at a little family owned Mexican restaurant, where Tegan and Luna entertained us by dancing to the music.

In the evenings though, we did the whole Vegas tourist thing, and checked out the strip.  We’ve been to Vegas once before, but we mostly spent it going to shows and checking out the hotels and casinos during daylight. Seeing it all at night was a whole different proposition.  We’d park in one of those giant, ten-story parking garages, and just walk and walk, taking it all in.

We watched the fountain show outside the Bellagio.  We saw a light show set to rock music over Fremont street. We walked around an indoor mall/market thing with a high ceiling that was painted like the sky and made you feel like you were outside.  We saw about a zillion street performers doing everything from mime to playing music to making spin art to impersonating long-deceased celebrities.  We politely declined the dozens of people trying to hand us their business cards with the naked girls on them.  We stopped into a White Castle attached to a casino (because everything’s attached to a casino), and had our very first infamous in-person White Castle sliders, which as it turns out taste exactly like the frozen version you can get at the grocery store.

As an aside, our choice of dinner made me want to watch the cult stoner movie, Harold and Kumar go to White Castle – I adore Kal Penn –  so we rented it the following night.  But the video had an error and quit during the last 20 minutes, so we never did find out if Harold and Kumar ever made it to White Castle!

But I digress.  The Vegas strip.  There were a lot of smells, and sounds, and colors, and lights. My first realization was that the very thing that made it all interesting and entertaining was the same thing that made it so very overwhelming.  It was the exact opposite of everything we embody.  And I don’t mean that from a perspective of judgment;  it’s just that we (well, at least the guys and I) are big introverts.  We’re homebodies.  We’re quiet.  We don’t like to draw attention to ourselves.  We’re…… basic.  What we saw over those couple of nights was very very much NOT basic.  It was flashy.  It was attention-grabbing.  It was loud.  

Tegan, who’s seven and all about the sparkle and the only real extrovert in the family, absolutely loved it, right up until the point her feet got tired and she was ready to get back to the hotel. Loved it. Loved the glitz and the glamour and the costumes and the lights.  Loved the limos and the expensive cars.  Loved the ornate hotels and the fountains and the twinkling casinos.  Loved the pretty girls in the sparkly outfits (on a not unrelated note, this will forever be the trip in which she learned what a “pasty” is.)  She did not however love those guys with the metallic body paint who were statues one minute, and moving around the next.  They freaked her out.  I found them sort of strangely fascinating.

I found it all sort of strangely fascinating.

It was fun, and It. Was. Exhausting.  On the way home, we stopped to tour Hoover Dam, but otherwise made a beeline back to “basic.”  We’ve been home since Wednesday evening, and I’ve barely gotten out of my sweatpants.  I’ve been puttering around home, enjoying sleeping in my own bed, getting reacquainted with Netflix, and catching up on normal, quiet, wonderfully mundane things like emails.

Going away is always fun, but returning home is glorious.

P.S.  Seriously though, did Harold and Kumar ever make it to White Castle??


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Sleepless Nights and Murderous Cats

A little irony for your Monday morning.

I’ve had insomnia off and on (mostly on) for my entire adult life.  The ironic part is that even on the nights that all the stars are aligned and I can actually stay asleep, some outside random force prevents me from doing so… a sickness, a car alarm, a snoring spouse, a thunderstorm, a meteor.  There’s always something.

Last night, it was my cat.

skylar

She looks innocent, doesn’t she?

I actually started out the evening really worried about her.  I tried not to let on just how I worried I was, so I didn’t pass it along to the kids…. in particular Tegan (who was already asking, “Is she going to die?”)  and Everett, who has a stronger bond with her than I think I’ve ever seen between a boy and a cat in my lifetime.

She was just acting really weird, even for a cat.  She kept running and hiding, first under our covers, and then squeezed under our bed, which isn’t normal for her.   She wasn’t playing, wasn’t eating, wasn’t purring, and was just acting…. well, weird.  When Everett tried to bring her to the other side of the house for bed, and shut the dividing door – their usual nighttime routine – she FREAKED OUT, hurtling herself against the door and meowing a demon inspired yell.

At some point, it finally occurred to us to wonder if she was having a reaction to the flea treatment we’d given her the day before.  It was the only thing that had changed in her environment, and it seemed a likely culprit, particularly when Everett said she’d been frantically trying to scratch at the back of her head (it was a liquid that was applied at the back of the neck).  So we found the box, read the warnings, and were basically advised that if our cat seemed to have a problem with it, or was sensitive to it, to simply wash it off.

With water.

So, 11:30 at night found Mike, myself, and the two youngest kids circled around the kitchen sink. Everett was there out of concern and moral support;  Tegan was there largely for the entertainment value.  The cat was hugged firmly in my arms (they have the scratches to prove it) while Mike tried to rinse off her neck with the sprayer as quickly and efficiently as he could while she struggled.  We rubbed her dry the best we could with a towel, and then brought her back to bed with us.  She crawled partially under the covers right next to me, gave herself an exhaustive bath to try to erase the indignity of her shower, and went to sleep.  I didn’t take my eyes off her;  afraid to stop watching.  I kept one hand near her side to make sure she was still breathing.  (I do the same thing when my kids are sick.  I don’t know if it’s weird) I felt like I had to stay awake with her, at least until I got some sort of sign that she was okay.  I know it’s something that non-pet people can’t understand, but in the base level of my heart, there’s little distinction between the care and concern I have for my human children, and for my fur children. They’re treasured members of the family too.

So I stayed awake and just watched her.  She mostly slept, she never stopped breathing, and every now and then she’d wake up just enough to clean her feet and legs again.

And then at some point I must have finally dozed off despite my best intentions, because I was awoken by a very loud purr that instantly told me two important things:   1)  She was feeling much better, and 2) I needed to protect my sensitive areas.

I think most cats purr when they’re happy…. but mine purrs 10% for happy, and 90% for “I want to murder you in your sleep.”  One minute she was sleeping innocently by my side, and the next there was a claw-shaped hole in my armpit.  Then my ankle, then my hand.  Clearly making up for lost time, she proceeded to lodge an all-out assault on any body part that dared move under the covers (or look like it was going to move.  Or exist)  She stepped on my face.  She sat down.  She pounced on my feet.  She pounced on my stomach.  She attacked the little bit of string that was hanging from the corner of my pillow case.  She purred louder and roughly rubbed her face against my forehead.

And… repeat, for the next few hours.

Face.

Sit.

Pounce.

Feet.

String.

Forehead.

She’s not usually allowed in our bed at night.  This is one of the reasons why.

It was after 3:30 when I finally let my guard down a little bit.  She wasn’t sleeping, but she was lazing peacefully (and deceptively innocently) all sprawled out by my side.  She was still purring, the picture of sweetness.  I closed my eyes, silly enough to think I could actually get some sleep, but they flew open in pain about 8.2 seconds later when a set of tiny razors punctured my neck. I’d accidentally left my little cross necklace exposed…. and necklaces are, of course, harbingers of evil that must be immediately chewed off any unsuspectlng soul who dares wear one. After that, I declared her observation period over, scooped her up, and carried her across the house to Everett.

By the time I got back to bed, I realized I had a stomach ache – whether from worrying that my cat was going to die or the sausage I had for dinner or the fact that it was almost 4 AM I didn’t know.  I was afraid it was going to prevent me from sleeping even the few remaining potential hours, but just before 5:00, I finally relaxed and started to drift off to sleep.

And then I had to pee.

The end.

PS The cat is 100% her normal self this morning, currently happily looking out her favorite window.  Stinker.


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I’m Pretty

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Last night when she was getting ready for dance class, Tegan looked in the mirror and said (as matter-of-factly as if she were commenting on the weather),

“I’m pretty.”

“You’re very pretty,” I told her, and the words came easily and confidently, not just as her mother but also as a human being who knows beauty when I see it.

Her statement was so lovely.  So simple, so accepting, as if there were never a question in her mind.  Of course I’m pretty.

And I couldn’t help but think…. when did I stop believing I was pretty?  Did I ever think I was pretty?  Did I think I was pretty when I was seven?  Did someone tell me I was pretty?

All I could remember were the negatives, like holes left from nails in a piece of driftwood.  The surface has long since healed, but the scars remain.

The comments that I was chubby, and (ironically) at other times in my life, too thin.

The reminders about calories, and fat grams, and exercising.

The girl at school who told me was my nose was too big.

The teasing that came when puberty hit, and along with it, horrible skin.

The friend who asked if it made me feel bad that I wasn’t as pretty as my sister.

The other friend who told me I was ugly when I didn’t pull my hair back.

The abusive boyfriend who told me my hair was too long and too poufy, my thighs were too big, and my boobs were too small.  And seriously, when was I going to cut my %&$@! hair?

The coworker who complained that I was stupid (which has nothing to do with physical appearance, but is somehow always there, along with the others)

When did I decide to accept this?  When did I start letting any of it define me?  All I knew was that at some point along the way, it shaped my truth.  It became my internal dialogue.  Did I ever make the conscious choice to CHOOSE to believe it?  Or was I powerless to stop it?   I didn’t know anymore.

“I’m pretty.”

And here is my daughter.  This confident, innocent, beautiful child, who I would do anything to protect.  I am careful – so careful!! – not to verbalize my issues in front of her.  No complaining. No degrading.  No self-deprecation.   When people have told me she looks like me I’ve completely resisted the urge to respond, “Are you kidding? She looks nothing like me.  Look at her, she’s gorgeous!”  And when she looks at me, in her honesty and her love and all her seven-year wisdom and says, “You’re so pretty Mommy”, I smile, and I say thank you. And in that moment… I feel pretty.

But it’s not enough, is it?  To pretend and smile and say the right things and grab the fleeting moments when they come?

I want what she has.  That thing I lost, so long ago.

It’s a lesson she’s teaching me, and will continue to teach me until I get it right.  Not just to feel comfortable in my skin, but to feel fabulous in my skin.  To OWN my skin.  To be able to look back at all those negative voices and say,

“YOU DON’T DEFINE ME.”

I’m working on it.  And if the lessons I’ve already learned, both from Tegan and the boys, are any indication, I’ll get there.  I’ll be able to join her in that mirror, and see a face that’s strong and confident and kind and smart and be able to say,

“I’m pretty”, and mean it.


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raw

There’s a scene in the movie, Mean Girls, that’s been on a continuous loop in my head (Mean Girls, by the way, is a movie you should immediately watch when you’re done reading this. One of the most ridiculous and quotable cult classics ever). In this one scene, the guidance counselor is doing a team-building exercise with all the girls in the school, and they’re taking turns getting up onto the stage in the gym, apologizing publicly for something, then trust-falling into the arms of the crowd below. This one girl gets up, in tears, and says:

“I wish we could all get along like we used to in middle school… I wish I could bake a cake filled with rainbows and smiles and everyone would eat and be happy…”

Someone yells from behind the crowd, “She doesn’t even go to this school!”

And when asked if she does attend, the girl responds through her tears,

“No…. I just have a lot of feelings…”

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It’s of course played to be funny, and it was funny… but it also kind of breaks my heart a little. Because I AM the girl with all the feelings. Mike and I will often joke that one of the things that makes our marriage work is that we’re opposite but complimentary extremes in so many ways.

He has no feelings. I have ALL the feelings. Sometimes Often Pretty much all the time, I walk through life as one big, weeping, bleeding feeling.    And often my grasp on not drowning on said feelings is… tenuous.

It’s a great paradox to me as a writer, because so very much of who I am comes from that same, raw, tender spot in my heart.  The part of me that makes me creative, that allows me to share, that enables me to use words to paint pictures is the same part that makes me so, so sensitive to the fallout.  The same part that makes sharing so painful and vulnerable in the first place.  Sometimes it just doesn’t seem fair that I seem to so badly need to share myself in some way, and at the same time have such difficulty dealing with what comes along with it.

I want to pull down my blog (along with my personal online presence) at least once a week.  I know when I’m headed for protective, breakdown mode when that desire starts to get more frequent.  Lately, I’ve been wanting to do it approximately 17 times a day.  I’ve not been in a good place emotionally, and coupled with not sleeping, the simplest of negative online interactions are making me unravel.

Yesterday I was the recipient of some unkindness from someone I went to church with about a hundred years ago.  I entered into a highly charged topic of discussion on Facebook, against my better judgement, and was rewarded by having my parenting decisions and my intelligence attacked and disparaged.  The parenting attacks get me the most, because it is so very, very personal.  It’s my life’s work.  My heart.  My soul.  I’ve been a parent for 18 years, and I’m a good parent.  And coming from a fellow Christian?  Those tend to be the conversations that sting the most, because 1) I am still carrying a lot of hurt and damage from my church upbringing, and interactions like that just rip off the barely formed scab, so I’m basically walking around as an open wound that never gets the chance to heal, and 2) I still have the silly notion that we’re supposed to be… I don’t know…. nice to each other.

It just about undid me.

And when I got up this morning, after another night of tossing and turning and not having slept, and sat down at my computer to write a new post… there was nothing there.  Nothing helpful or positive or witty anyway.  Just brokenness and fatigue.  Someone once told me, one of the last times I shared a similar post, that perhaps a personal journal would be a more appropriate place for such thoughts.  Well I have a journal.  It’s a veritable uncensored stream of emotions and crazy.  But this blog is journal-like too, in that it’s streaming from the same personal, tender place.  It’s just a “tone down the crazy in case my mom reads it” (even though she doesn’t) version.

So why am I sharing?  In equal parts for myself – it’s cathartic for my weary soul to transfer it from my head to the screen – and for you, too.  I think it’s only fair that if  I share the happy and the upbeat and the positive, that I should also share the positively broken open.

I’m not going anywhere.  I’m still here.  Still writing.  Still reading your comments.

I’m just a little fragile.  And I’m the girl with all the feelings.  So if you’ve been waiting for just the right time to start following the adage, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all,” right now would be great.

And if you held your arms up and caught me when I trust-falled off the stage, that would be great too.


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2 AM

Photo credit:  espensorvik

Photo credit: espensorvik

I scroll through the Netflix menu, only half seeing it through sleepy eyes.  They seem to have added a whole slew of Lifetime TV movies, and I find something oddly nostalgic and comforting about that, bad acting and all.

I carefully re-stack my pillows under my right arm.  I’m basically cocooned in pillows at this point, the only way I can get comfortable enough to sleep (which, of course, I’m not doing at the moment)

Just about exactly 3 months post surgery, my shoulder’s starting to feel a bit better, but I try not to think about it… lest I jinx myself.

I pick a movie, based solely on the cheesiness of the title, and roll onto my side.  That was a bad decision, as it necessitates starting the pillow stacking process all over again.

I’m back on my back.

I stare at the ceiling fan, letting my eyes go out of focus until the blades look like they reverse direction.  I remember doing that as a kid, to pass time in church.

I think about church as a kid, and all the baggage it brought with it.

I get up for water.  I take a couple of ibuprofen for my headache, being as quiet as I possibly can, because if the cat hears me in the kitchen she’ll start incessantly meowing, convinced it’s time for breakfast.

I resist the urge to check on all the kids, and assure myself that they’re all still breathing.

I return to bed, and look at the two people already in it.  Both my husband and my six year old, sleeping soundly, their breathing deep and even.  I try not to resent them for it.

I see the blood pressure monitor (bought not because I have a blood pressure problem per se, but because our health card paid for it, and I find it fascinating to monitor) on the night stand when I set down my water, and consider taking my blood pressure, just for something to do. Decide against it when I remember that its velcro is pretty much the loudest velcro in existence.

Stack the pillows.

Play the movie.

Play my week’s to-do list in a constant loop in my head.  Think about all the things I should have done, need to do, and want to do.  Think about the fact that things happen, and plans change, and sometimes to-do lists don’t mean anything at all.

My brain is reaching, reaching…. for something that I can’t see.  Old mistakes, old conversations, old embarrassments, old hurts.  If I think about all of them, cross them all off the list, will I eventually rest?

I stare at the ceiling fan some more.

I look at my movie, and have no idea what’s going on.  Someone’s crying (unconvincingly). Someone’s always crying on those Lifetime movies.

I briefly doze at some point during a courtroom scene.  I jolt awake, with a sharp inhale of breath.  A nightmare, this time about the upcoming conference.  I think of some conference-related things I need to do.  I think of seven more.

Will I remember in the morning?

Why don’t I have a pad of sticky notes next to my bed?

If I go get my phone, I can take care of some emails, and get a jumpstart on my day.

Is that sound I just heard coming from outside?  From my kitchen?  From my 14 year old’s room? Is someone getting murdered?

I stay in bed, where I’m safer.

The credits are rolling;  my movie is over.  I switch to Friends, which has lost none of its appeal even after its 83723rd viewing.  I’m up to Season 7, episode 10:  The One With The Holiday Armadillo.

I roll over onto my side.  Fix my pillows.

I hear Mike’s alarm, suspended somewhere in that space between dreams and consciousness. It’s 5:00.  I hear the shower running.   Then he’s saying goodbye, and I mutter something in return.  Good bye?  I love you?

I try to close my eyes, but sleep still won’t come.  My head hurts.  Did I already take ibuprofen?

On my back.  Stack my pillows.  Fix my covers.

I start another Friends.  The One With All The Cheesecakes.  Season 7 wasn’t my favorite season, but it’ll do. Wasn’t Tag Jones (Eddie something.  Eddie Cahill) also on some sort of police drama?  One of the Law and Orders?  Or CSI? Criminal Intent?  Something?  At 5:30 in the morning, on 2 hours of sleep, it feels imperative that I know.  I make a mental note to look it up on IMDB when I get up.

The sun’s coming up.  The room’s getting brighter.

I force myself to stay in bed until after 6:30.  I kiss the girl, still sleeping away, on the cheek.  I pull the covers a little higher over her body, and she stirs just a little bit as she snuggles more comfortably into the pillow.

The house is quiet – so quiet – as I head straight to the kitchen, tasting my coffee (the only thing that’ll get me through the next several hours) even before it’s made.

I’ve already forgotten all about Eddie Cahill.


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A (Sort Of) Weekend Getaway

I’ve always wanted to go to Seattle.  We’ve lived in Arizona for going on nine years now, and it somehow seemed more likely that I’d finally get to go.  Arizona’s on the same side of the country at least.  But nope.  We’ve driven back across to the east coast twice now.  Gone to Florida.  Gone to Chicago.  Went to the San Francisco area once, San Diego a handful of times.

But no Seattle.

Well, because life is funny and ironic (and/or because God has a sense of humor), the husband and I are going on a last-minute trip to Seattle tomorrow, in the midst of a million other things that we have going on …. and we’re going to be there exactly long enough to sign all the paper work and pick up a car we just bought, and get in said car to begin the 20+ hour drive home.  No more, no less.  My first instinct was to have it shipped, because it wasn’t a super great time for a road trip  – even from someplace fun like Seattle – but it turns out that having it shipped would cost a good $500 more than flying up and driving it home ourselves.

So, yay?

My new ride.  Tegan has already named it Cinnamon.

My new ride. Tegan has already named it Cinnamon.

It’ll be a little adventure, and adventures are always a good thing.  And I DO get to see Seattle, however briefly. Mostly though, I’m happy that once we get the new car home we can put this particular stress to rest, and get on with our lives.  Ever since the accident, and all the accompanying…. stuff… to take care of, I have felt completely tapped out. The final little placement on the house of cards that made the whole thing crumble.

Now though, I’ll be able to cross something big off that ever-present cosmic to-do list, and move on to the next: In this case, tying up the 345 loose ends for the conference that is coming in less than four weeks, whether we’re ready or not; and getting my surgery scheduled for October so I can start praying that the second time is the charm.

And so it goes.

I came across this quote this morning, and found it rather perfect:

 

Nobody trips over mountains. It is the small pebble that causes you to stumble. Pass all the pebbles in your path, and you will find you have crossed the mountain.  ~ Author unknown

 


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Out and About On The Interwebs

And another Monday… after a busy weekend tying up loose conference ends, running errands, and taking an evening out to join some other Rattlers fans at a local sports pub to watch the Arena Bowl  (Yay Rattlers for a blowout game leading to a Championship three-peat!).

This morning is a lazy morning:  drinking coffee, watching a movie with the girl, and getting caught up on all my reading.

Here are a few things that have caught my attention:

~  Several of you have tagged me and/or sent me this video of a dad running over his teenage son’s video games with his lawn tractor.  I feel like it’d be really redundant of me to even voice my opinion.  You all know what it is.  Connect with your kids;  COMMUNICATE with your kids.   Don’t destroy any hope you ever had of a meaningful relationship with your kids.

~ This is just…. I don’t know what to do with this.  I grew up in a very very different time (which sounds weird, because I’m 40, not 80)  Should it really be this different now?  You can’t even write a story?  About a DINOSAUR?  Things are crazy out there.

~ This photographer took a bunch of nude (and innocent) pictures of his toddler daughter, and the internet exploded.  I don’t know that I would have shared them, but there is NOTHING wrong with the pictures themselves.  My kids are generally naked for at least the first five years of their lives.  At six, Tegan is still in various stages of undress for a vast majority of the day.

~ I didn’t do the ALS ice bucket challenge.  Yes, awareness is important.  Yes, giving to causes that you believe in is important (and I do, frequently).  I wasn’t a super fan of this one though, for a few different reasons, but mainly because I was disappointed in how very very many people who posted videos of themselves doing the challenge didn’t give a link, or even mention why they were doing it.  It turns into something else at that point.  I eventually stopped watching the videos, but I did like this.

~ And finally, I just really liked this blog post.  It’s a conversation that needs to continue:  “However, the words most commonly associated with Christians – even by other Christians! – were ‘judgmental’ and ‘hypocrites.’  If we’re to be the body of Christ in the world, and in so much as Jesus is the embodiment of the God of our understanding, then we have some work to do.”

Happy Monday, friends!

 


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sick days and links

I spent yesterday in bed, caught by what was either the kids’ flu, or my body’s way of telling me,  “Woman!  Rest! Here, have some body aches and chills and nausea, in case you get any wild ideas about not listening.”

So I rested, watched Party of Five re-runs until I was sick of them (waists were really high in 1994), and let my beautiful 9 year old bring me mug after mug of tea.  As a side note, if you’re looking for a single-cup coffee maker, skip the Keurig.  The Bunn MCU changed.  my.  life.

I also, when I wasn’t dozing off, got all caught up on my interwebs reading.  Here’s a list of some of the best things to grace my screen this week:

perspective, attitude, and poop –  This changed my life too, mainly because I’m forever more going to amuse myself by thinking that the person who’s being awful to me must just be really constipated. A good reminder to keep our perspective.

The Tiger Mother:  race, success, and lessons on the wrong thing – I’m not sure when I stumbled onto this blog, but it’s lovely and interesting.  This was a very unschooly perspective on what’s truly important in life (from someone who’s neither a mother nor an unschooler)

A Note About Philip Seymour Hoffman:  Addiction is Not Selfish – I was sad that such a talented actor lost his battle with addiction this week.  I found this to be a good reminder of what addiction is, and is not.

Russell Brand:  my life without drugs – And so was this, in a very intimate, up-close and personal way.

Online Connections:  Do They Count?  – Spoiler alert:  Yes, yes they do!

I Don’t Have to Be a Mom if I Don’t Want to – An important read if you’ve ever had one of those days when you just want to run away from it all.  Warning:  Liberal use of the F word 🙂

13 Examples of People Being Awesome in the Middle of the Atlanta Traffic Jam – To restore your faith in humanity. Because, kindness.

And finally, since I shared about depression the last time I wrote, here’s a little animation that does a great job explaining what it’s like, with a hopeful message of recovery as well.

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

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