#freedom, American, Mental Health, PTSD, Trauma, Veterans

FUBAR

Have you ever been through something extremely painful or traumatic and thought “I can’t handle this” or “there is no way I am going to make it?”

Perhaps you are dragging yourself through the day, barely keeping your head afloat, and spend the entire day dreaming about the moment your head hits the pillow. Praying sleep will be an escape from the nightmare you are living through.

You somehow get past this pain a little bit each day. Before you know it, you notice that you got through one minute without thinking about it. Eventually, you went one hour or one day without crying. As you keep pushing through the pain, the days turn into weeks, the weeks turn into months, the months turn into years.

You may even find yourself able to mention this event or loss without getting choked up. Hopefully, you are mindful enough to recognize this feat and reflect on it. It could be “I said their name today without tearing up” or “Someone asked me about it and I was able to respond.” 🤯

Eventually, you realize that you somehow survived a traumatic event and just blew your own damn mind.

Peace shows up around the time you have embraced the person you are now. Acceptance of this means that you are now a changed person forever, you cannot change back.

Change, Loss, Pain, and trauma of any kind is difficult.

Obviously some individuals have been through more than others.

As human beings, we have to provide empathy and compassion not only to each other, but to ourselves. This pressure to “get back to normal” after a loss or a traumatic event-only prolongs the process.

We also have to remember that we are not here to judge or compare each other’s pain. Example: “who endured a worse situation.” Or “who deserves special treatment”. Trauma and Loss are not grounds for a competition.

However, there are a precious few who deserve an automatic level of honor, respect, empathy, compassion and an immediate win in the unspoken competition of “who is entitled to special treatment.”

These precious few are not celebrities or professional sports players.

This is a group of individuals who have had to go through MANY of those painful, traumatic events over and over and that most likely took a lifetime to process. Everyday, these “regular” people probably said “I can’t do this. I can’t handle this. How am I going to get through this?”

They did it anyway, for us.

These courageous men & women provided us with an example of the sheer resilience that human beings possess. These resilient members of our society have sacrificed years of their life for our freedom and to serve our country…

VETERANS.

Yesterday, my patriotic side got fired up after I listened to my favorite podcast, Smartless, with guest Tom Hanks.

(This podcast is a comical escape hosted by Sean Hayes, Jason Bateman and Will Arnett. What I enjoy the most about this podcast, is the real, open-ended conversations and the quick-wit of the hosts/guests is captivating. Basically, they all rip on each other whenever they have the opportunity.)

Teacher & Baseball coach-then sent to fight in a War 🤔😢

Anyways, Tom Hanks was asked about his role in Saving Private Ryan and what was the source of his passion and fascination with being a “war guy”. Tom disclosed that during his “formative years every caregiver & adult would make reference to the war as this dividing line” that everyone collectively went through. “Another aspect is that a big chunk of their lives, they had no idea where they were going to be in the next week, month, six months. This was a time loaded with all sorts of problems that we are still dealing with.”

“I’m a schoolteacher. I teach English composition… in this little town called Adley, Pennsylvania. The last eleven years, I’ve been at Thomas Alva Edison High School. I was a coach of the baseball team in the springtime. Back home, I tell people what I do for a living and they think well, now that figures. But over here, it’s a big, a big mystery. So, I guess I’ve changed some. Sometimes I wonder if I’ve changed so much my wife is even going to recognize me, whenever it is that I get back to her. And how I’ll ever be able to tell her about days like today. Ah, Ryan. I don’t know anything about Ryan. I don’t care. The man means nothing to me. It’s just a name. But if… You know if going to Rumelle and finding him so that he can go home. If that earns me the right to get back to my wife, then that’s my mission.

Captain Miller, Tom Hanks: Saving Private Ryan

Will Arnett then points out to Tom Hanks that “What I love about this movie and is that your character is a school teacher, he is just a regular guy NOT a guy born to be a military officer. He had to go to the war, because that is what he had to do. This movie provides reverence for the bravery of these people who did extraordinary things. Captain Miller was an example of one of these regular guys called to do extraordinary things.”

I wrote this In honor of Veteran’s Day, 11/11/21, and “a regular guy that did extraordinary things.” He is the only person that I am privileged to know personally that served in a war. Except he served in a different war and a different time. A time when people were not proud of their veterans. When he arrived home after serving our country, he was treated cathartically. He was humiliated and shamed; he was told to take his uniform off.

Thankfully, on October 27, 2021, he received vindication and a moment of the honor he deserves, through a non-profit organization dedicated to honoring WWII, Korean War & Vietnam War veterans by flying them, all expense-paid, to DC for a day of honor, thanks and dedication.

His wife, children and grandchildren were also able to witness a glimpse of this priceless moment at Midway Airport before he boarded the plane. This beautiful and long-awaited experience was provided through the generosity of http://www.honorflight.org http://www.starsandstripeshonorflight.org.

On this momental Veteran’s day, 11/11/21 and in honor of all the “regular guys called to do extraordinary things” please donate to this brilliant organization to do our part in honoring those who served our country.

To Donate:

https://secured.honorflightchicago.org/np/clients/honorflightchicago/donation.jsp?forwardedFromSecureDomain=1

This listen to the podcast: 👇🏻

https://open.spotify.com/episode/0X7CI0m8VikarcpoRXOSyi?si=KBh5pv4dQGmftVPLwABP-w

More on this:

https://www.military.com/off-duty/movies/2021/11/08/saving-private-ryan-writer-set-pen-movie-about-marine-and-his-afghan-interpreter.html

Importance of Friendship :

https://www.nbcchicago.com/top-videos-home/wwii-vet-4-year-old-boy-strike-up-incredible-friendship/2680795/

#Beyourself, #brenebrown, #doitanyway, #freedom, coming of age, Ned Vizzini, under pressure

The Terror of “Knowing”

Picture it: It’s a chilly, dreary Tuesday morning, probably November 2nd, you are in the car, flipping through radio stations. The cusp of the holidays are approaching. You are not feeling anything in particular, perhaps even a little numb or dead inside. Probably chasing a hangover of some kind; from sugar, booze or your drug of choice. You are going through the motions of whatever tasks you have on your pointless agenda.

Suddenly, you hit a pause of silence on the radio; you hear those glorious drums…the chills involuntarily run up your spine, arm or the back of your neck. A gasp or slight smirk emerges on your previously despondent face. …Next thing ya know, you are belting out “FEED THE WOORRLLLDDD!” And “the only gift they will get this year is LIFE”….

Life?

You freeze with a furrowed brow, with that expression of “what-in-the-hell-did-I just say?” THAT.

This “FFFUUUUCCCCCKKKK”face.

The realization that the lyrics of this “jam” are so heartbreaking and sad. That naive, duh moment, “Omg. I’m an asshole. Uh, first world probs…I was just depressed about going to work on a boring Tuesday, feeling blah or overwhelmed about the holidays approaching…jeez get some real problems.”

It’s fascinating and tricky how musicians and songwriters can make a song upbeat & fast so you do not even realize what the song is truly about. A complete mindfuck.

Which brings me to why I am kind of freaking out right now.

The same situation just happened to me with “Under Pressure” by David Bowie & Queen.

I am mind-blown right now struggling to comprehend how I’ve been singing the lyrics to “Under Pressure” for twenty-something years and never realized what I was saying. How the hell does this happen?

🎶”Watching our friends scream LET ME OUT!”🎶 😱

David & Freddie, you deceased & tricky muthafers!

“It’s kind of a funny story” is a novel turned movie featuring “Under Pressure”. I will not spoil this for you with my usual humorous Memes-poking fun at this movie because it’s a hidden gem. It’s one of those movies that you will have to watch yourself. If I tell you anything more about it, besides the trailer below, you MAY NOT have the same experience I did.

Ironically, this movie is some thing that peaked my interest but I had no desire to watch it. I don’t want to watch a movie about depression when I’m feeling “blah”. It turned out to be-exactly what I needed.

The seasonal change followed by all the routine adjustments, the growing pains of my kids and myself along with them; feels a little more overwhelming than it has in the past.

This movie reminded me what it was like to be a teenager and how they feel. Adults can feel the same way, yet express it in different ways. Teenagers and even kids these days are more in tune with “life” way more than we ever were. They are exposed to so much more through social media.

It was a reminder why I went into the mental health field in the first place.It was a subtle hint that even though you don’t “feel” like doing something or believe that you have any “talents”, JUST DO IT ANYWAYS

Uncomfortable emotions are where the magic happens.

I’m sure David Bowie & Queen were feeling the same way when they wrote & composed the song “Under pressure”. This masterpiece of a song is what happens when individuals with shared values are real and authentic together and collaborate ideas.

“Queen’s Brian May says it was the group’s bassist John Deacon who first came up with the song’s unforgettable riff, and kept playing it over and over. The problem, Taylor said, is that everyone got hungry and went for pizza, and by the time they got back to the song Deacon had forgotten what he’d come up with.”

https://ew.com/music/queen-david-bowie-wrote-under-pressure-drunk-then-forgot/

The channeling of uncomfortable, but not necessarily negative, emotions such as sadness, anger, frustration, stress, pain, grief, despondency, and rage is an art in itself.

This process is a way of coping, using your gift, being authentic, being real, and living. You may possess something that transforms these emotions into some thing-spectacular, creative, and possibly beautiful.

However, even if what you enjoy doing doesn’t turn a profit or if no one likes it, this process is what flows for YOU and YOU AS AN INDIVIDUAL.

Doing YOU is doing something YOU enjoy. THE point is: instead of numbing these feelings out, or ignoring them, you stay with them, feel them and eventually “do” some thing therapeutic with these emotions. Perhaps just putting your foot in front of the other and walking in the “allowing yourself” to just “be”.

What ideas come to mind?

How do you know what your gift is?

Paying attention to the things you enjoy doing and time flies by, you get lost in it. It could be something you dream about like playing the guitar, playing the drums, playing an instrument, acting, improving, charading, game-playing, doing stand-up, writing, drawing, painting, sculpting, singing,gardening, planting, weeding, cultivating, innovating, editing, photographing, cutting the grass, doing hair, coloring, fixing a car, fixing a machine, using watercolors, composing, wood-shopping, poem-writing, pole-vaulting, inspiring, speaking, glassblowing, baking, frosting, cooking, exploring, running, crafting, reading, climbing, hiking, exploring, directing, cleaning, organizing, running, walking, riding, exercising, decorating, wrapping presents, folding clothes, etc. are all ways of processing emotions.

All of these are an examples of occupational therapy.

Which you may or may not be aware of, that is what they were doing on the psychiatric floor in the movie during arts & crafts and musical expression. I can’t wait for you to see these parts of the movie!

What I love about counseling, being a counselor and the mental health field is the process of self-discovery and personal development; which is displayed in this movie. I am drawn to the process that the protagonist, “Cool Craig” experiences during his psychiatric admission. Once he stops resisting and attempting to control the situation, he lets go and trusts the process.

Just like this blog that may or may not have more than six readers 😜, it is something I do to process emotions and it gets my mind off the “terror of knowing what this world is about.”🎵

🎶 This. is. ourselves. under. pressure. 🎶

#Beyourself, #doitanyway, #freedom, Covid-19

The Vast Configuration of Things

A daily routine: The day in and day out of it can be redundant & exhausting. What is the point of it all?

The weekly grind of working, parenting and adulting overall is boring, tedious and unfulfilling most of the time. Throw in 18+ months of uncertainty, due to a lingering global pandemic; paired with this underlying pressure to “get back to normal” does not help.

Now, more than ever, we need to take care of our physical, emotional and mental health. How are we supposed to do this? It is extremely difficult when you feel confused, unsure, tired, worn out and depleted.

In a attempt to find some type of motivation myself, my brain has been searching for a frame of reference, a role model, to cope with this strange time. Which led me to thinking about George Bailey.

George is technically not a real person, however George is relatable to all of us and represents many of our real-life, elderly population. This wise, hardworking generation lived through true-times of uncertainty; such as the Great Depression and a World War. I suppose they just “kept showing up” through the confusion and cognitive dissonance.

George was already feeling stuck, trapped and living in a period of uncertainty before the real shit hit the fan.

“I’m shakin’ the dust of this crummy little town off my feet and I’m gonna see the world! Italy, Greece, the Parthenon, the Colosseum. Then, I’m comin’ back here to go to college and see what they know. And then I’m gonna build things. I’m gonna build airfields, I’m gonna build skyscrapers a hundred stories high, I’m gonna build bridges a mile long…”

George Bailey

George wanted to do something BIG.

BIG is what we all “want”, isn’t it?

A bigger house, a bigger yard, a bigger car, a bigger bank account, bigger boobs, a bigger ….

I WANT a BIG one. (Everyone does George🙄)

Anyways, BIG does not always refer to SIZE.😜

BIG things can also come in small packages.

Burn out: What was I doing here again? I forgot already. 👆🏻

There is nothing wrong with dreaming BIG.

There can be an issue with dreaming big if you base your self-worth and life’s purpose on an external picture of “what-it’s supposed-to-be-like” instead of “what is.” As with anything, there are steps to greatness.

George wants to do something IMPORTANT.

George wants to BUILD.

However, George is so fixated on the “doing something BIG” he missed the BIG picture that he already was. George was oblivious that these little, menial things he was completing consistently on a daily basis that were adding up to BIG results.

George could not see he was already BUILDING:

George was BUILDING homes that provided other human beings with a sense of dignity and integrity.

George was BUILDING relationships and friendships through candor, loyalty, honor, honesty & consistency.

George was BUILDING a community with these relationships who held the same core values.

George was BUILDING the foundation.

Without a solid foundation, a community, a family or an individual falls apart. 👇🏻

Pottersville: a community of selfishness with no values or morals.

This solid foundation of community & the connection of core values is what ultimately saved George’s life & mindset. By his perseverance and showing up, he inadvertently saved the entire town from plummeting into the gutter.

It is tiring staying true to your values with leaders and other members of society do selfish, stupid, manipulative and downright evil deeds. How are we all supposed to maintain a sense of hope?

This may lead you to feeling like you should do something drastic & BIG, such as quitting your job, switching careers, moving, cutting off family or friends, and even leaving the country.

Fantasizing about a massive change to stop the awful, bewildering sensation of cognitive dissonance is normal; it’s an escape for the brain. A good grounding exercise for when you catch yourself fantasizing about living in the country alone with no internet, wishing for a bigger house, a better car or a BIG vacation to “fix” how you feel=look back at your childhood.

What is the first vacation memory that pops in your mind?

This is what I honestly thought of. 👇🏻

We didn’t have any vacations but what I do remember is the night we went out together for the first & last time as a family to dinner….

The McRib Story

We were all showered and dressed in our Sunday best for our first dinner out. We eagerly piled into the family van, wide-eyed with excitement for the evening ahead. Our mouths were watering, recalling that glorious sandwich with its golden, brown-sugary appeal. Our vivid memories of that commercial were so powerful, we could almost taste it. We craved this tasty delicacy with an empty, insatiable hunger.

All of us were smiling greedily at those Golden Arches, we were finally here! My stomach fluttered with butterflies as we pulled into the McDonald’s drive-thru so we could all finally try the infamous McRib sandwich….Drool was rolling down our chins as my Dad ordered six sandwiches from the overly-perky, fake smiling attendant !

The drive-thru attendant’s expression changes to that patronizing-exaggerated pucker and states, “The McRib was only here for a limited time, so we no longer carry that sandwich. It may be back. Sorry.😕 May I get you something else?” My Dad shakes his head no, speechless. Our mouths hang open, frozen, in disbelief. The devastating disappointment was written on our faces as we drove back home.

This sad story of the BIG Sandwich that resulted in BIG disappointment is ironically what makes all of us laugh now. It didn’t turn out as planned, just as most things in life. Now this story provides us with BIG joy.

Through my family’s solid foundation of a good sense of humor and laughter-in-the-face-of-adversity is how we found joy. How we DEALT with the disappointment is the shit-sandwich I remember as an adult.

The point is, in the vast configuration of things, Potter is a scurvy, financially-rich spider 🕷 living an empty life and we have no control over anything. We also have no control over what our kids will remember as adults.

In the BIG picture, we are only able to provide ourselves with a SENSE of control. An example of this sense of control is a planning ahead, a consistent daily routine, shifting our mindset, staying connected to those who maintain the same values and practicing coping strategies. Meanwhile, still accepting that something may still go wrong as a part of life; such as the joy-robbing, limited-time, McRib Sandwich.

“The McRib is a barbecue-flavored pork sandwich periodically sold. It was first introduced to the McDonald's menu in 1981. After poor sales, it was removed from the menu in 1985. Seasonal items are an important marketing tool for the food industry. Limited releases almost give consumers a Pavlovian response.”By Danielle Wiener-Bronner, CNN Business
Worth & Value are found in prioritizing the serving of others while making a living.

Bottom line: Keep showing up through it, we all feel the same way. Find ways to cope with the foreign feelings.

ADDENDUM 11/30/21

If you love It’s a Wonderful Life …

There is a restaurant and bar in Berwyn Illinois called Fitzgerald’s. This super, cool place is located along a quaint and adorable block. Not even joking. A cross block before it is Clarence street. 😇.I am so grateful I was able to get the free tickets and show up to their viewing of It’s a Wonderful Life! They had specialty drinks such as mulled wine, flaming rum punch (of course) and a fun drank ZuZu’s petals!

I went with friends. We all agreed they had fantastic food, best waffle fries we ever had. This is definitely going to be a regular place to go for us all year round. Loved it!

https://www.fitzgeraldsnightclub.com/

More on this topic:

https://www.binghamton.edu/news/story/2390/a-path-to-peace-researchers-explore-the-best-ways-to-cope-with-covid-stress

https://thriveglobal.com/stories/how-to-incorporate-the-three-c-s-of-resilience-into-your-life/

https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2021/08/11/pandemic-anxiety-psychology-delta/

#Beyourself, #freedom, #greatpretender, #millenials, #opportunity, #simonsinek, Badassery, Find A Way, gun control, Hamilton, Lin Manuel Miranda, march for our lives, unlockingus, Women's Fight

BLUE is the new BLACK

During my time as an ER crisis worker, I was written up at least once a year for accumulated tardies.

I have also been put on levels for mistakes I made.

I am one of two individuals in the history of my department that was on a “level”. (Level three is termination.) How unfair right!?

Back story: When I first started, I got so mad about a PTO policy that changed; I impulsively went straight to the CEO. 🙈😬 Soon after, I began to receive levels for “minor” mistakes.

Upon receiving this level, I went into full-on JED mode (justify, explain, defend) a.k.a JJM (JOLIET JAKE MODE) to my boss.

I was FURIOUS at her audacity because I had stayed late the night before!

HOW DARE SHE!?

How dare THEY!!!”

I then exclaimed, “It was 7:01! Can’t you let this slide?” (What about the other six late clock-ins? 🤔)

I pissed and moaned about it to my coworkers.

One day, a nurse in another department candidly told me “I’ve been on a level before. You know what? It’s just to help you learn. It’s not like a jail sentence.”

When I stopped blaming, I was able to see clearly what I did wrong and how I need to change. I DESERVED the LEVEL.

This level was about a choice I made.

This level was about a mistake I made.

My justification that it’s “no big deal” or my valid reasons for committing this violation does not matter.

It is a rule, policy, procedure etc. and I broke it. PERIOD.

I needed to THINK.

I needed to THINK, With MY BRAIN, Not the internet.

OWN IT. Learn from it. Accept. Admit. I.was.wrong.

I needed to feel the pain and shame of the consequences in order to change.

I preferred to “get in trouble” individually than have my whole team suffer for my mistake, my ignorance, and my stupidity.

Just as I HATED it when I was a kid and we lost recess because of the one asshole who wouldn’t stop talking. I never wanted to be that kid.

I didn’t want to be that coworker.

Takin one for the team.

This “dumb” rule and it’s “unfair” consequences is to prevent much bigger mistakes from occurring in the future.

I attended a mandatory re-training, with clear concise examples and the consequences if not followed-ahead of time. Also annual trainings to keep this fresh in our mind.

Oh and remember how I went straight to the CEO when I wanted to have a tantrum about what I didn’t like? I learned to follow the chain of command. It is there for a reason. I get it…now. If I didn’t make those mistakes, perhaps I wouldn’t have.

Do I deserve to lose my pension because I made some bad choices?

Should my entire department lose their pension because of my mistake?

Speaking of losing pensions, here is another authoritative tale where I believed I was right…This is in regards to the countless tickets I have received for speeding, failure to come to a complete stop at a red light prior to turning right, and blowing red lights.

After my violation, I would respectfully hand over my insurance card and license to the police officer with a sweet, innocent smile. Sometimes, in a vain attempt to get out of the ticket, I may have flirted a little.

This manipulative behavior on my part would be dismissed with a “nice try” nod or a wink as if to acknowledge the effort. Then the police officer did their job by handing me the ticket.

Later, while attending court to fight this outlandish claim: I smiled, apologized and respectfully presented my case.

After all, I had VALID reasons why!!!

However, deep down I knew the truth.

I wasn’t truly sorry….I was sorry because I got caught. Perhaps this ONE time I may have been right; but what about was 27 other times I made the same mistake and didn’t get caught.

I was only sorry for my behavior because it hit me where it hurt. 💰 💴 ⏰ I could not afford the consequences.

Therefore, I was not GENUINELY sorry, but feeling sorry for myself.

After my presentation at court, you know what the police officer or judge would reply 97% of the time? Something like:

“You weren’t even close.”😂😎

I didn’t get out of it.

I didn’t have a tantrum. I didn’t persuade anyone in powerful positions that “I know” to get me out of it.

I was stuck with the consequences as I should be.

I paid the $200 fine. I went to traffic school. I drove more cautiously to avoid future infractions. I learned to stop the behavior.

Should I have gotten a lower fine because I’m a woman?

Should I have gotten a lower fine because women earn less than men?

Would a man have gotten out of this?

Was I just pulled over because I am a female?

Was I written up because I am a female?

I don’t know all the answers but I’m leaning toward a hard NO. My point is, we are all humans and make mistakes. I can at least own my part. Shouldn’t we all?

Some make worse mistakes than others and those individuals need to receive their appropriate consequences.

We still ALL EQUALLY need consequences to continue to learn and function in society. Yes, of course there are racist and sexist people in this world; but there are many more who are not.

What happened to accountability?

I knew the rules and I still chose to break them.

I am aware if I commit a serious crime, I go to jail. No getting out of it. I respect my freedom so I obey the law. (See below for Chris Rock- obey the law skit)

I DO NOT deserve special treatment because I am a woman.

I SHOULD NOT be let off easy because I’m really, really good looking 😜(Zoolander). (See halo effect)

That is the BOTTOM LINE.

There are NO excuses.

There are no valid reasons.

I should receive consequences and re-training.

It never even OCCURRED to me to argue with police or judges.

Perhaps some would call this an example of “white privilege.”

I call it RESPECT FOR AUTHORITY.

I call it RESPECT for our COUNTRY.

I call it RESPECT for the RULES.

I call it respect for those HUMAN BEINGS who are doing their extremely difficult job to enforce the rules.

I don’t know about you, but I NEED rules.

I need authority.

I’m not sure when all this ENABLING started, but it has to stop.

In a time, not too long ago, we used be like this:

A time when people laughed instead of being offended about everything.

How can we get back to this? Where we laughed and celebrated our differences?

How can we move forward from today and stop being so divided? In the end, we are all equal human beings, aren’t we?

Perhaps making everyone read this book below as a mandatory part of being a United States Citizen would help us remember.

Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know about the People We Don’t Know https://www.amazon.com/dp/0316478520/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_glc_fabc_3j2aGb1RGFC5V

Regardless of what any of us think of our previous president, he is human too. One person cannot be held responsible for everything. There is a LONG chain of command that is also accountable. We NEED Many LEADERS! Like thousands!

Addendum: https://markmanson.net/newsletters/mindfck-monday-66?vgo_ee=uZEOWBYMFd2rLfzi%2BJIpDmQOP8ZXmRzMvz3Yw%2BcA7gI%3D

#freedom, Christmas; The Grinch; The Ultimate Gift; Mother knows best; 2020

The Stocking is Half-Full

The biggest fights I had with my mother were about her relentlessly forcing me to watch old movies.
.
It was so “unfair”! I wanted to watch “normal” stuff like everyone else. I would fight her to the end.
.
I was SO stubborn! I STILL am! Right now, I am gritting my teeth like these defiant toddlers & teens below.👇🏻🤬.🙈

I refuse to touch the grass!
I’m not moving, what you gonna do about it?


I haven’t watched THE BISHOPS WIFE since I was an eye-rolling teenager- too busy scowling to see the magic. Even if I did, I wouldn’t admit it.

To keep from slipping into that Charlie Brown-what-is-Christmas-all-about-depression this year; I needed something bigger than Buddy or the Red Ryder BB gun.

So I made a point to watch The Bishop’s Wife over Christmas weekend, remembering how much my mom loved it.

Watching this movie now at 46, in 2020, was like fuel for the soul.

How did I miss the sweet snowball fight scene? (Or my favorite kid of all time- the young George Bailey—Bobby Anderson). Probably because my mom was trying to tell me to look.

George Bailey I’ll love you til the day I die. (Just don’t tell my mom or I’ll have to kill you,)


I didn’t appreciate the ice skating scene; probably because my mom gushed about it; which in turn made me think it was “dumb”.👇🏻

In pouting and covering my ears, I also missed the story about the shepherd and the empty stocking.🥰🥲😢🤩
.
I see it now. I feel it now.🙈👇🏻

White Christmas- I dreaded this one too- “I hate musicals!” is all I would defiantly scream.

My Mom: “You don’t hate musicals. You love Grease, West Side Story, Wizard of Oz, The Sound of Music & Mary Poppins.”

Me: (grrrrrr🤬) “Those aren’t musicals, shut up and don’t talk to me!”

When my mom is right. Me: 🖕🏻


Over the last few years, I finally swallowed my pride and let myself enjoy White Christmas. Fine!

Ok! The songs are kinda catchy. 😜

Who am I kidding? I love all of them. 🙈
I get the true meaning of the story now.

That General Waverly chokes me up every time😢…

Sobbing like a bitch at home 12/26/2020

I now appreciate the insane dedication, practicing and hard work that went into this movie: the real dancing, the real singing, (not computer generated ) the lighting, and the dresses! Perhaps it’s because we live in lounge wear & jammies now but I never truly noticed THESE outfits!

I mean…who wouldn’t feel sexy AF in this?

I am grateful that my mom is still here for me to tell her THANK YOU for being so annoyingly persistent. It only took 30 years+a quarantine for me to come around.

Read this true story about Irving Berlin. It will break your heart even more about this song, the story and the👇🏻 movie.

https://www.countryliving.com/life/news/amp45720/white-christmas-song-history/

THE ULTIMATE GIFT

This year, I recognized the greatest gift I have ever received. The gift of this knowledge presented itself on Christmas Eve and was about as welcome as Ebenezer’s three spirits.

A old friend casually joked with me “at least you got to believe in Santa Claus.”

I never thought of “believing in Santa” as a gift or that having the “chance” or “opportunity” to believe in Santa Claus was a privilege.

It makes me sad that my friend did not have this opportunity.

I realize now how much effort is put forth into having your child “believe”. Perhaps some parents don’t have the energy, imagination or faith to keep this alive; or maybe some parents do not know how.

The innocence, imagination and simplicity of a child’s mind made the magic of Christmas easy to pull off.

Their excitement over little things made me excited; which in turn made me WANT to make it fun and magical.

The last two years have been opposite for me with two teenagers. I honestly had no clue what to do for them because they are genetically predisposed to be selfish, ungrateful assholes.

The vibe & statements I received from them was, “Christmas isn’t as fun anymore mom, it’s no big deal. It’s okay.”

The message I would give back, “It’s okay kids. I have nothing left to give anyway you life-sucking punks. I am empty.”

Which in turn caused me to NOT WANT to do anything for them this year. I didn’t care.

However, this is the year they needed me to care the most.

Then I remembered what my mom would do. Despite what we said, she would do it anyway. My mom still did everything the same even when we were teenagers and early twenties. She still put presents out from Santa on Christmas morning and put stuffed animals in our stockings despite the eye rolls. It was as if she could still see our inner child; kinda like this commercial.👇🏻https://youtu.be/QJntbYytPz8

She had the ability to be where we were at… yet she still knew what we still wanted; even though we were too stubborn to admit it.

I did what my mom did and I did it anyway. I stayed present with where my kids are.

I had no expectations of them or their reactions. Instead of being mad about their lack of excitement, I rolled with it.

I made my kids wait until after church to open gifts.

I stalled a little longer to finish wrapping gifts for others. Even though “it’s not fun like it was, mom” they may have accidentally displayed some anticipation and a glimmer of childlike-Christmas-morning-glow.

By expecting them to be as they are instead of what I hoped them to be; I was pleasantly surprised by their pleased reactions and gratitude.

It was a beautiful Christmas and my kids were grateful, sweet and thoughtful.

My mother gave me this gift to me…

My mother “showed” me how to “do” Christmas.

Mom, I should just wrap you up and put you under the tree every year because you are truly a gift. 😢☺️

And you were right about everything.🤬😂 (Inner Teen: Thrashing defiantly inside.)

Well, almost everything….

I refuse to stay up til 4am wrapping – that shit is done way ahead of time while kids at school or out with friends. I also learned from this SNL skit to ask for exactly what I want, buy it for myself if I do not get it and to stuff my own stocking!. 😂

No flat as a pancake stocking here 😜
#brenebrown, #doitanyway, #freedom, #greatpretender, #homeschoolingrealshit, #millenials, #opportunity, #sidehustle, Badassery, brene brown, glennondoyle, Health & Wellness, Lin Manuel Miranda, narcissism, narcisstic personality disorder, parenting struggles, relationships, unlockingus, vulnerability, Women's Fight, Yoga Pants

Sympathy For The Devil

I may not KNOW a lot of things but one thing I do believe for sure is that BOB (Esai Morales) from La Bamba is one BADASS mother fucker. He has to be THEE coolest and most captivating actor on the planet.

He should have won an OSCAR for best supporting actor for his performance; (Esai Morales) truly MADE the movie.

He literally SEDUCES the audience.

That being said, what I find most ironic is that no matter what he did or said, I still liked his character. I thought he was hilarious, I still do. What is even more puzzling, is that he is a complete dick.

(Side note: Esai also appeared on Ozark for a season or two- I was immediately entranced. )

As a woman, I completely identify with Rosie. As a mother and wife, I empathize with how she feels; I hate how she is treated by Bob. What was also puzzling is that she ANNOYED me. 🙈

I can actually feel her pain, grief, & confusion. You can see it written on her face. The “wait…wtf-just-happened?” face. The “how-in-the-hell-did-I-end-up-here” face. She displays this facial expression the majority of the movie. We all know that face.

This puzzled face☝🏻The “Rosie” face.

We all know that feeling: When you realize you’ve been had. You got screwed over. The worst part about it, the majority of it was your own doing. You assumed. ASS-U-ME.

I get how she assumed as well. Any woman in a could easily fall into Bob’s trap; especially the married ones. Bob’s seductive allure could have wise woman entranced in his spell: After Bob flirts with you: Huh? What kids? What husband? You don’t have a job you say? Ballsy. Hot…You drink every day? Wild & crazy. You live in your mom’s trailer? Sounds cozy. Humina Humina 😍🥰😛

I am embarrassed to admit this, but I remember thinking: Awwww just leave him alone Rosie.. it’s your own fault you got yo self knocked up

☝🏻This is the work of the devil.👆🏻

I STILL liked him after that horrible, disrespectful and honest statement by Bob. Like “Dayyyuuumm.” Why?

Currently, I am an adult and an educated & wise woman, yet I still like Bob. Wtf!? How come? 1. Clearly excellent acting by Esai Morales 2. Amazing directing

However, I am not satisfied with this. Inquiring minds want to know!!!

I was concerned with my reaction when I watching this movie recently. When the mother, Connie Valenzuela, minimized Bob’s cartoonist abilities and reminded him that he is about to become a father, I thought: Jeez Connie, buzzkill, what did you have to go and do that for!? Why don’t you get out of Richie’s ass and pay attention to poor Bob. He is trying. POOR BOB

Poor Bob: your womanizing, chauvinistic, selfish, entitled, immature, unemployed, alcoholic, manipulative, man-baby-son who just was released from prison.🤔 (Bob sounds like a real catch on paper doesn’t he?🤥😂)

Idle hands are the devil’s workshop; idle lips are his mouthpiece.Proverbs 16

From a biological & genetic standpoint, Bob does what Bob does best. Bob is a an alpha male who is genetically predisposed to flock his sexy shit to attract females. Bob does whatever possible to get laid; ultimately procreating more human beings to populate the earth. (Biology 101: It is vital for males to compete for reproduction and for females to choose between those competing males.

If a member of the opposite sex finds your tail, your song, or your dance moves sexy, you will have a chance to fulfill your primary biological role as a member of your species: to reproduce.

https://biogeoplanet.com/how-do-animals-find-mates-sex-and-sexual-selection/

This is “Bob’s” “primary biological role” aka his job and he rocks it. He got Rosie pregnant so now he needs to “move on” and to do this again.

It’s not his fault…yet. (Please don’t get angry, hear me out;)

From a biological/genetic standpoint, Bob is doing his job. He behaves how all male animals act. Bob is genetically predisposed to be what humans would consider “an asshole”.

The problem is, he also doesn’t know any better. No one has taught him otherwise. No one has had the chance to teach Bob to step above his biological urges.

Please don’t cause him to feel inadequate by making him have to THINK.

Don’t make him feel like a failure by asking him to have COMPASSION or EMPATHY? That is NO FUN.

What a DRAG it is getting old.

What would cause a human being to behave this way? Or to treat women this way?

Bob’s True Story & my psychological interpretation😜:

Just like Rosie, Connie also hooked up with a bad boy at a young age and got herself impregnated (with Bob.) The hot, sexy biological father took off.

I know you “love him” Rosie, but unless you want to cook dinner on his motorcycle…

Connie then met someone else (Steve) and Connor married Steve when Bob was two years old. Steve loved Bob and treated him as his own. Steve and Connie then had a child, Ritchie. Ritchie was a reflection to Connie what she did right=Ritchie=golden boy. However, Bob was a reminder of her bad decisions.

Connie, Steve, Bob & Ritchie were doing well together for a while. Bob assumed Steve was his biological father and Bob loved him.

In an interview, the real Bob Morales states his life took a bad turn when he was 14 and his parents (Connie & Steve) separated.

“I moved in with my mom while Ritchie went with my dad. One day I told my mom that I wanted to live with my dad and and that’s when my aunt told me ‘Why do you want to go with him if he’s not even your real father.’Bob Morales 

Despite Steve conveying to Bob that he loved him as his own son, the shock devastated Bob. Also, it was horrible timing for Bob to find this out because soon after this discovery, Bob began high school.

Bob was getting into fights frequently so he stopped attending. Instead he gave money to the homeless nearby who would buy him alcohol.

While his now single-mom was working two jobs, Bob was not going to school and had no structure all day, no guidance, no direction=idle time which is the DEVIL’s playground.

Therefore, Bob ended up going to a detention center from age 12-17! Connie, his mother, signed him over as a ward of the state. He did not see his family that entire time he was locked up.

👆🏻AKA Go Fuck yourself Connie. I will never let a woman hurt me again.

The first time Bob saw his mother or Ritchie in years; was the day of Steve’s funeral. Which also means he didn’t get to say goodbye to Steve or to grieve properly.

Bob learned to adapt to his lonely life by becoming the life of the party. He learned how to get what he needed by finding comfort in women and selfishly move on. This probably soothed his resentment toward his mother for while, but then he felt guilty; so he drank the pain away.

Of course he was jealous of Ritchie. Ritchie got his Dad and his Mom. He got nobody.

The point is that all of US are capable of evil depending on what we are exposed to.

I thought of this blog when I was about to bitch at my son for not cleaning up the mess he made after making quesadillas. I realized that I can’t assume he knows how. Instead, I showed him how clean it up. I told him that this is what I expect. I didn’t talk to him like he was stupid. I thanked him for making his own food. I didn’t clean it up for him. This is the only way they learn.

Mothers: We cannot assume that our sons are just going to know how to treat women when they’re older. We cannot assume that their Dad’s are going to teach them either. Most Dads are working their ass off and are never home. (Probably chasing tail 😂 not knowing why. Kidding!🤪)

We have to teach OUR SONS what WE want from them so they can learn how to GIVE this to their future partners. We need to teach them about affection, connection, friendship, compatibility, respect, and the long term.

We have to teach them that this may be a biological urge to continue to chase women and populate the world, HOWEVER, we are not animals.

It costs a lot of time, money, energy to raise a human child properly into a respectable adult.

We need to teach them that human females can be hot and smart. Women can be attractive, fun, brilliant, and confident. We have to teach them, not ASSUME, that a Human FEMALE’S purpose is not to populate the world.

It’s Biology Rosie- kidding! You can have both!

We also have to teach our daughters: What they tolerate will become their future. Being a victim will not get you anywhere.

It’s OUR job to ALSO teach the FUTURE MEN of this world these skills. We need to teach them how to love unconditionally. Parents need to be a TEAM.

There is a chapter in this book on how we “go easy” on our sons because we don’t think they can manage it all and are tougher on our daughters 🙈

https://markmanson.net/love

https://markmanson.net/compatibility-and-chemistry

#markmanson

#ericthomas

#glennondoyle

#freedom

Adult Goldilocks

As a mental health clinician, I have the right to diagnose myself. Lately I believe I have been suffering from MULTIPLE OZARK PERSONALITY DISORDER. (MOPD)

MOPD is located in the DSM-V: Diagnosis code: 69692020. ICD-10 Code: 2337.

Since quarantine, I have noticed that I am taking on more and more characteristics of these Ozark personalities. (You WILL definitely relate to this, whether you watch Ozark or not. Truly… no spoilers here, anything discussed is all pretty obvious.)

What I find ironic and hilarious is that my husband will no longer watch this show with me because he found the show “ridiculous” and “unrelatable.” He stopped after season one…typical. Season one of any show is comparable to a psych 101 class; basically playing just-the-tip with character development.Sheesh.

Anyways, the irony is, that the more outlandish and ridiculous this show becomes, the more I find it relatable.

Let’s be real, everything is ridiculous in the world right now. I mean who would ever think we would not be allowed to attend live sport events and there would be cardboard fans? Who would ever think that kids would not be attending school in person? Who would ever think that in the midst of massive change and uncertainty there would be a presdential election? I digress

These real-life events make some good old-fashioned, illegal activity seem refreshing. What’s the big deal about a dad who wants to make some extra bank on the side for his family?

Since we were encouraged to do nothing but sit at home, scroll on the phone and binge watch tv; we extinguished our coping skills. Now, everything is different at one time. All this change is just too painful for my brain to tolerate; my psyche has now split in order to protect my sanity…

Split Personality #1:The first episode of the third season of Ozark, Ben is introduced. He is a substitute teacher who seems pretty cool; but then he is exposed to the reality of tweens and smart-phones when a student begins to cry in class about a text with a photo received. The lack of eye contact, respect or response from the rest of the students infuriates the him. He then proceeds to take all the kids’ cell phones and throw them in a garbage. (I think this is a completely appropriate reaction.) He goes too far and throws them all into wood chipper. I find myself relating to this entire scene up until the last 17 seconds.

Take it easy Ben, you are just a sub. Substitute teacher: https://youtu.be/Dd7FixvoKBw

Split Personality #2: Ruth Langmore, who can make you blush with her raw cussin and brutal lack of filter. Ruth’s demeanor, even while having sex, gives off that don’t-fuck-with-me vibe that can make you cringe. She has also channeled her white-trashness into some useful business woman tips. What is cool as hell about her is she owns her mistakes; no excuses. Fuck is now a noun, verb, adjective, pronoun, adverb and a language in itself because of Ruth. Anyone else speak fluent fuck nugget?

Straight up…my Spirit Animal.

Personality #3 The matriarch of the show, Wendy Byrde, who manages being a mom and wife with political policies. Wendy Byrde is completely transparent with her kids, does whatever the hell she wants in her marriage and uses her political knowledge to commit illegal crimes legally.

First episode of season one: Wendy is an ordinary, stay-at-home mom who gave up her political career/power to raise her kids. Her life was uneventful and easy, and she was unhappy and bored. She thrives in chaos. She had a rough childhood. 👈🏻(This article is brilliant about her acting out when she doesn’t belong.) She comes alive while juggling negotiations with a mexican drug cartel and her power soars when she comes up with strategies to legalize her husband’s money laundering operation. Wendy spins these webs from the safety of her minivan.

Just like any mom does, “Wendy’s got this.” Mom’s know what to do. Wendy can handle almost anything and plow through the day, unaffected. However, what is so relatable: it’s the little shit that throws her over the edge. Everything is cool until her damn emotions slow her down.

She can blow off a call from a drug lord👇🏻.

She can answer her kids tough questions without missing a beat.

Wendy’s-mentality: Don’t sugarcoat anything. Throw us a bone and let us know where we stand. Mama Byrde: OK, here’s a bone…straight up your ass.

TO HUSBAND: “Quite Frankly, I Don’t Give A Damn If You Like It Or Not, Cause I Feel Pretty Good About It. It’s A Good Idea, And I Did It For Our Family. What Did You Do Today… For Our Family?” Wendy Byrde (boom)

Marty replies flatly: “I bought a strip club.” (He is pretty bad ass but I haven’t gone numb yet;)

Everyone has a weakness and Wendy’s is: she cannot handle her brother and his “irrational” behavior. Why can’t her brother just understand that they are laundering money for a mexican drug cartel and everything is going according to plan? Why won’t he leave things alone and stop trying to make everything moral and just? Why doesn’t her brother “get it” that it is normal to be disintegrated in an acid barrel when you stand up to the cartel’s lawyer or you work with the FBI? Why won’t he stop behaving like a toddler and involving the police? Jeez…

Wendy. loses. her. shit. with her brother. The flooding of emotions causes her to get hammered in a parking lot in her minivan for days. When she does eventually come home, she wants to hide under the covers. She doesn’t want to get out of bed. She doesnt care about any of the stuff she was relentlessly working toward. She lost her tenacity and drive. She fell apart.

Which brings me to my “Wendy Moment”. No I did not get hammered in my minivan. What are you nuts? I do not drive a minivan😜.

Backstory: The last seven months during this global pandemic, I’ve taken pride in that I’m a Gen Xer. I have been thriving in this chaos. Watch movies with my kids every night, psshh, my dream come true. I have loved not having to go anywhere. I accomplished so many projects and got in the best shape of my life. I was kicking ass at work and rolling with the changes. My relationship with my kids and husband has never been better. Even when I struggled with e-learning and juggled my kids being home while I was working; I persevered.

Then the little shit happened that threw me over the edge. School started for 2 days, then was canceled for two more weeks (something died inside me that day😜). I broke my own phone and had wait 6 days for a new one (I am still re-doing every password in my life). My daughter received her scoliosis brace and she was NOT happy. This clusterfuck of events has triggered me to split. These are all NORMAL, regular, solvable problems, yet I cannot deal. Like Wendy, I can deal with the crisis and big stuff. The little, unpredictable, emotional shit…not so much ..

👆🏻Mama Byrde broke into her old house in Chicago, then acted out by pulling an adult Goldilocks. She drank their beer and sat on their beds. She realized she no longer belonged to this life anymore.

MOPD Examples:

Monday: I was picking up some girls for a volleyball camp carpool and my friend was talking briefly about her day to me as a elementary teacher; now teaching her students online. It sounded unbearable, extremely stressful and overwhelming. A flashback of me teaching my daughter in May, triggered a depersonalization episode. It was as if I was hovering above both of us, looking at our life thinking “this cannot be real.” Similar to the Wendy-Goldilocks moment when she realized she did not belong in that life anymore.

The no longer knowing is terrifying.

The not knowing how to do our job, not knowing how to be a parent, not knowing how to behave in public (That awkward-should we hug, I want to hug but, are you hugging?…)

Everything we once “knew for sure” we no longer know.(split) In comes Ruth Langmore: “This is crazy. I don’t know shit about FUCK!”

Tuesday 9/28/2020 – I Drive kids to school, attempted to listen to the news on my way home. The discussion about the presidential debate …Flood of emotions …I walk past my office, get in bed and hide under the covers…(split) Ben Davis “I will not fall into line with the others. What you walked into is normal… this is all normal….No, nope, no it’s not …smh…” (split) In comes Ruth again…

“What are you going to do, kill me? you bitch wolf?

☝🏻Ben the sub: insubordinate and churlish☝🏻
Wednesday: My son was excused from school for a golf tournament. I drive him to golf course at 5:30am. By 8:46am: My son has a golf-injury, I shit you not. He hit a ball, it ricocheted off a tree and knocked him in the chin. He was gushing blood apparently. I had to stop working and bring him to urgent care to get stitches. The day was shot. Anything my family said to me after that, I replied:
Kid: “I’m going to ride my bike to Dunkin.”
.
Me: “The fuck you are.”
.
Kid: “I’m going to the skate park.”
.
Me: “The fuck you are.”
. Everyone just stay here, stay safe, stay uninjured. But…wait…we already did that…and that’s not living. Of course I thrived when we were all in a bubble. Nothing ever happened. We were all zombies. That’s not normal. It was a nice break; a reality check on what’s important. Yet it is all a blur. You don’t remember the nights you got plenty of sleep. You remember the nights you almost died in a field while you were at a “sleepover.” “Ok, ok you can ride to Dunkin after you do the dishes, and get decaf”. Look both ways when you cross the street (dipshit).”

“Ok. Ok you can go to skate park after you take out the garbage. You better wear helmet, knee pads, elbow/wrist guards…and here’s some bubble wrap (dumb ass).”

In the end, the little shit is all that matters and that must be why it’s so hard. -Quillan Kelly-Dunn

#brenebrown, #doitanyway, #freedom, #greatpretender, Badassery, Find A Way, parenting struggles, relationships, unlockingus, Women's Fight

True Romance…

When I win my Oscar for best screenplay and give my speech; I would love to say “and last of all, I’d like to thank my husband for not giving a shit.”

Despite how it sounds, I mean this in a good way. By his “not giving a shit” or being “too tired right now” is actually helpful. My anger at him forces me to figure it out myself. When I do, my self-esteem sky rockets. I am no longer mad at him because I am too empowered; but not in a self-righteous kind of way. Like in a “men and women are equal” way.

In the heat of a debate. Both stubborn AF

Whenever I ask my husband for help, it is like an imaginary tennis match. He takes his pretend racket (tongue-on-roof-of-mouth-click-sound effect) and just hits that request right back to me. My rebuttal (tongue-click) back to him. This continues the longer I debate and the longer the match. Kinda like this: https://www.instagram.com/p/B-e3V7MDtMi/?igshid=z3swsvcatt03

I hate asking for help and I’m not a damsel-in-distress type of chic. I do not need or want to be taken care of or to be saved. (It does feel nice to think about it, perhaps my stubborn pride gets in the way.) When he does offer suggestions or the “right” way of doing things; he is met with a straight up tirade of obscenities. Therefore, deep down I must really not want him to help me.

Or…I would rather do it myself than deal with this:👇🏻

My husband after getting rid of yellow jacket nest 👆🏻

My old man is the most tired man in America; he works three jobs; so it’s understandable why he is exhausted. However, it was kinda weird that was able to stay up through rain delays until 1:45am when the Cubs won the World Series. Miraculously, he was still able to get up for work at 5am the next day. But…that’s another story…😂

Anyways, I get that he’s tired; which is why I cannot expect much from him. They say having no expectations leaves you pleasantly surprised right? My expectations are so low it’s kinda like when someone goes out for a pack of cigarettes and doesn’t come back. 😜 When show back up, you are pleasantly surprised.

So I live my life expecting him not to come back, but he keeps showing back up to sleep, eat and watch sports here so now what? 😜 I work full time as well and handle everything at home with kids such as an being an Unpaid Uber driver, bank teller, chef, grocery shopper , scheduler, drama processor… I’m TIRED!….

For every insult, there’s a counter insult.
No one ever wins. 😉

I know that he knows it’s difficult at home and more difficult than what he does because my situation is unpredictable. He will never admit it. It’s not black and white how he likes. I hate things that are black and white except movies. Being at home plus working is all mutha effin gray. Kids and teens are unpredictable. You never know what you’re going to get.

Anyways, Our most recent endeavor. About a month ago, our washing machine stopped working. It’s a LG High Efficiency washer, equipped with smart diagnosis. This means that I can connect my IPhone to the washer and it can diagnose what’s wrong. My washer continued to display “IE”. He has an Android, I have an iPhone which probably contributed to his feelings of inadequacy. 😂

In the manual, “IE” means that you have to clean out the water inlet valve, Manual says to clean inlet valve monthly. I know we have NEVER done this. So I asked my old man to do it. He didn’t feel like fixing it right now which led to the “tennis match”.

While sitting on the couch, he told me to call the repairman we used for the dishwasher. The woman who answered the phone asked me what was wrong and I told her.

But what are you doing right now Floyd?

She replied, “Yea, that Washing machine brand isn’t the greatest. That code means you need to clean out the water inlet valve”. I said “Like I know what that is or how to do that, thats why I’m calling you.” (Whorebag, in my head)

So she calls me back and said she can get me in on Saturday between 12pm-4pm.

Me: “Ummm that’s four days from now, you have nothing sooner?” Whorebag: “Nope. Mmm-mmm. No. We will call you the day before AND the morning of to confirm.”

Me: “Ok, thanks” (In head: “Dont you condescend me, man. I’ll fuckin kill you man.)👇🏻

I confirmed the service call from the know-it-all, condescending lady Friday night and Saturday morning. Shocker: Husband is too busy to wait for fix it guy. We go out to breakfast because we have nothing else to do. I overeat carbs to feed my resentment, he leaves. Then on my day off, in the middle of a Saturday afternoon, I have to wait. Me sitting on the couch, after a large, carby meal and doing nothing but waiting is not a normal situation and unfortunately, I fall asleep.

Three unanswered calls later from the fix it guy, I missed my repair window. His voicemail:

“Yea, since you aren’t answering the phone, I am not wasting a 20-minute trip since you are my only call out there today.” Me: Ew. Wasting his time? Who the hell does this guy think he is?

Off topic: True magician, Gary Oldman as the pimp Drexel Spivy

Me: (Furiously calling him back-but I get the awful lady 😫) Me: “I thought after I confirmed three times, he would just show up. I left a note on the front door for him to just come in. I missed his call but I have been here waiting.”

Know-It-All-Lady: “Yea, no, he’s too busy. If you missed his calls, then we have to reschedule. Where were you anyway?

Me: (wtf-now who does SHE think she is?) “Where was I? I was home, sitting here waiting, doing nothing. I never do that so I fell asleep.”

Know-It-All-Lady: “You fell Asleep???”

She says it in that shocked, angry, judgmental how-dare-you tone like Rachel says to Ross after she rambles for 18 pages… .Front and back

Now if my husband dozed off on the couch, this would completely accepted and understandable. For a woman to fall asleep-Unheard of. This woman should know how tired women are in general as a species; this is a complete betrayal.

I’d rather die than have you fix my washing machine bitch

Me: “Well, I think it’s ridiculous that you guys make me wait four days for this appointment. Despite my confirming both calls and wait on my day off on this beautiful Saturday afternoon. His time is too valuable to drive here? I’m sorry my shitty machine isn’t worth his time. I’ll call another company.” She began to talk and hung up on her. (Damn that felt good)

So… I have had a hell of a time finding someone to fix this thing; but I REFUSE to call that company back. I really do not enjoy cleaning my cleaning appliances. 😂 I swallowed my pride, watched some you tube how-to’s DIY fix it videos and did it.

I thought of the jerky boys while doing this. “Should I bring all my tools?” https://youtu.be/5F-VQtEfbTU

Yea, I fixed it. It cost NOTHING. I’m a bad ass. I’m muthafuckin Charlie Bronson. I’ll tell the old man the guy came out and fixed it. He won’t question a thing. I win, kinda. However if I said I fixed it…you know what will happen. Tons of questions, skepticism and he still won’t admit it. That’s all I really want. So who really wins? 😂

You a bad ass.

In the end, I know how to fix the washing machine. I know what a water inlet valve is and what a pair of pliers is. I don’t need him to admit it. I’m not even mad anymore. The irrational thoughts have left and I’m left with realizing this was about a stupid, replaceable washing machine. As much as I hate his guts in the moment, I realize now I’m doing the same thing he is doing. Everything I say about him, he could say about me. He handles stuff I don’t think about. I don’t give a shit either. 😂

The big picture.

However,👇🏻Admitting it is sexy, I hope men don’t wait until they are this old to see the truth.

Off topic: See the best of Floyd: I still laugh 18 years later

#doitanyway, #freedom, #homeschoolingrealshit, Find A Way, parenting struggles

District 2020

We had a 13th birthday party for my daughter last week; decided to make it an 8th grade kick off as well. This means we invited the whole class, all genders, hoping the class would possibly get along…together. (This class has not worked since day one.) We also rented a dunk tank assuming this should be a hit; and perhaps they would forget they can’t stand each other😂.

My daughter kept warning me about the boys, she said “Mom, they have no consideration for anyone but themselves.” (Probably repeating what she had heard year after year from the teachers.)

I was getting the yard (arena) ready the night before. I ripped a piece of shipping tape off the side of the pool (kids tried to ghetto-ly hang some rope lights next to the filter. 😂) Suddenly, I feel a sharp, shooting, burning pain on side of my head. I thought for a second I electrocuted myself. Then I see a wasp flying around. I look under pool edge and there is a giant a yellow jacket nest.

I considered spraying it and removing it myself. However, when I googled what to use, it strongly advised not to do this alone. Then found some websites for bee removal services and “Swarm removal.” 😬 (Usually, I would ignorantly underestimate the situation and fearlessly proceed. Then I had a momentary flashback of THE HUNGER GAMES’ tracker jacker scene and….it is 2020.

The hive has probably been there all summer. Adults & kids have been here swimming almost daily; no one saw it or got stung. I email some of these services, receive some prices and then they explain this is a 3 step process that needs to start at dusk .

The party begins in 14 hours, there won’t be time for someone to do all these steps. I hope, pray and assume no one will see the hive. I am then distracted by a past winner, “Haymitch” who graciously drops off a cooler of Gatorade and cookies.

Good luck…

12pm: I notice on my phone the temperature outside is a perfect 84 degrees; I look out the window, not a cloud in the sky. The most perfect day. Despite the temperature on my smart phone, stepping outside is a different story. As I slowly slide the door open, I am hit with a humidity blast that feels like 110 blazing degrees.

I am pouring with sweat setting up the bean bag boxes and volleyball net. I stop to wipe the sweat from my brow that is stinging my eyes. As a stand still, I feel the sun searing through my sun-screened, pale af, freckled, perimenopausal skin.

12:30pm: Most of the “tributes” have arrived. The girls remain on the deck, staring wide-eyed at the boys who are violently shoving each other into the pool and holding each other underwater. The floats are mangled and destroyed within seconds. The girls remain shocked & terrified; unsure if they should enter the pool or get blistered in the sun.

1pm: The dunk tank has been delivered. As I am pulling our hoses to fill the tank, I hear “It’s a Yellowjacket!” “Omg there’s a yellow jacket nest!” “Awesome!!!”

To my horror, all the boys are now surrounding the backside of the pool armed with bean bags, a ball, whiffle bats, and a broom (where the hell did he even find that?) Immediately, I demand they drop their weapons and step away from the hive.

“You guys are going to get stung!“ I exclaim. The boys playfully reply, “No we won’t!” Or “We don’t care!” I try another tactic: “Would you care if I record you and send to your parents?” Most freeze and give that you-wouldn’t-dare-look. I glare back at them👇🏻.

All except one take the bait and retreat. The last is still laughing maniacally as he is shoving the broomstick into the heart of the tracker jackers lair. I remove the broom from the boy, he mopes away with his head down, temporarily defeated.

1:30pm: I witness the girls still standing on the deck with their mouths hanging open. I gently encourage the girls to go in the pool while boys are out. Thankfully, “Peeta” shows up with lunch!

While kids are eating, I hide the “weapons” in the basement. Then I hear a loud, thumping sound. I run outside and see a heckling boy sitting on the dunk tank seat. The boys have already begun throwing balls at the dunk tank target. The Problem is there is only one inch of water in it. I envision a Tom & Jerry episode (pic below).

Before I plummet into debt from a kid requiring extensive dental work or sustaining an injury in the empty tank; I completely over-react with a loud, shrilling, scream. Everyone looks at me, stunned. *Side note: My reaction is amplified due to the dunk tank manual boldly stating SEVERE injury should occur if dunk tank is not full or “damage to the tank will result in responsible parties assuming cost of repair.”😱🙈

👆🏻Me: Visualizing myself having to listen to my husband’s lecture about adulting and “dunk tank repair” is not being financially responsible. 😜

2pm: I regained composure and tell the kids how high the water needs to be in the tank before they can use it. I assured them I have three hoses going and it should be full in 20 minutes. This answer pacified them and the boys retreat back into the pool, while sporadically antagonizing the bees. I notice The grass around the pool is flooded (Tick Tock Tidal Wave).

2:14pm “Someone’s been stung!” I hear repeatedly by numerous girls. (Tick Tock Tracker Jackers)

As I am searching for a sting antidote in my closet, I remember something important from my kids toddler years.. At every playdate, it was chaos the first two hours; then magically the kids started to get along. The kids had to get used to and adjust to having another kid around. Epiphany: That is what is happening now! The two hour mark is in 15 minutes!

Stung tribute…Don’t say I didn’t warn ya kid.

I walk down the stairs and find the entire floor from the back door to the front is soping wet. I am blindsided with a smell of stove gas & wet dog combined with sewage. My daughter is shaking her head at me. I ask her, “For the love of God, what is that smell?” (Tick Tock: Poisonous gas) My daughters glares at me with contempt, that “mom-you’re-so-dumb” look.

“Mom! I told you this would happen! All the boys smashed into the bathroom and locked the door so we couldn’t use it! They don’t wear deodorant! Then one of them took a big dump!” My daughter exclaims.

For once, the Covid mask comes in handy as I cover my nose & mouth. I locked the front & garage door to prevent numerous, wet entries and dried the floor. I tell my daughter, “They are boys, they never hung out with you guys yet. They just need boundaries and limits; it will be okay. If not, they are leaving in 2 hours and we won’t have to do this again.”

“Two more hours of this!? UGH!” She exclaims and stomps away.

2:30pm Some of other boys have now realized that there are girls present. “Effie” shows up to help me (hallefuckinglujah!). We gather them all together to take a group picture. Immediately following the flash, the boys simultaneously charge at the girls, pushing them into the pool. The girls nervously laugh and Effie and I shrug in unison; “At least they are all in the pool together.”

The dunk tank is full. The girls huddle and watch the boys heckle, whips balls at the bullseye and dunk each other. This contained, organized activity has seemed to spark the interest of all parties. The boys surprisingly organize themselves into a line and take turns throwing and being dunked. I overhear one of the more advanced thinkers of the group (who has sisters 😂), “Aren’t we going to let the girls have a turn?”

With two other moms present to supervise, I take this opportunity to escape. I had some lunch, cooled down in the AC and changed my clothes. The fear-induced “hallucinations” begin to subside and I have an epiphany.

My yard is the “arena” and the arena in a CLOCK! Just like in Catching Fire! It’s just a GAME! Stop giving a fuck and just play the game!!!

3pm: I look outside at the “arena”. I see “Effie” & “Peeta” sitting on lounge chairs with their feet up. To my surprise, some of the kids are either playing bean bags together or making a whirlpool. What…the…

Toddler to Teen mindset: Every “play date” takes two hours for the kids to get along.
That’s just the way it is.

Haymitch shows up holding a 6-pack and provides some useful advice. We enjoy some cold, adult beverages as a team. We effin did it! It WORKED! We won!

I have a sip of the “adult elixir” and experience another revelation… “They are just kids! They are supposed to be assholes! It’s our job to teach them to not be! They do not know how to play the game yet! We have to teach them how to play!”

Peeta organized the bean bag tournament. The kids all sat TOGETHER and watched each other play. I couldn’t believe it. Haymitch periodically would make the kids stop and take cleaning breaks. They listened. It was an effin miracle! (A 2020 miracle …pssshhh. No way.)

The four of us are sitting around talking and laughing. Parents are starting to show up to pick up their kids; grateful for the long break from their kids after a five month quarantine.

My daughter whispers in my ear, “Can you text all the parents now before anyone else comes so everyone can stay later?”

“What!? I thought you couldn’t wait until this was over? Remember you were frustrated there was two hours left?” Stay later?!? She’s hallucinating; musta been stung by a tracker jacker. I still almost fall out of my seat.

Daughter: “Well that was before. It’s been SO fun. I never want it to end. Everyone wants to stay.”

“They do?”

“Yep. And…You. were. right. Mom.”

👆🏻HO.LEE.SHIT. Was not expecting that👆🏻Me, Mom…was…right?. Tears of joy welled in my eyes.

I really did win!

😂 #winningmommoment