Sunday, September 28, 2008

A lesson taught to some poor unsuspecting teenager last night

Always, ALWAYS double check the number you're calling/texting at 1 in the morning. You never know when you're going to txt somebody who's had a couple too many amaretto & cokes and genuinely enjoys fucking with people.

The following is a conversation that took place last night via text.
(His comments are in italics, mine are in plain font.)

1:02 a.m. R u with alexa?
1:03 a.m. Hell ya. Tylers drillin her!
1:04 a.m. Who is tyler
1:05 a.m. Some random friend of my cousin
1:06 a.m. What are u guys doing
1:07 a.m. I told you. Focus! Where r u?
1:08 a.m. Im just at my house. So whats going on? I thought you were jk?
1:10 a.m. Hell no! I got vid. U should cum over!
1:10 a.m. Lol who is with u?
1:11 a.m. Alexa tyler brittany and john hill
1:12 a.m. Lol and who tha fuck r they
1:13 a.m. My cousin and his buddies
1:15 a.m. So they actually fucked?
1:15 a.m. Dude my bed is a mess!
1:16 a.m. Lol alrite what would we do if i came over
1:17 a.m. What do u want?
1:18 a.m. What
1:19 a.m. I sed what do u wanna do?
1:20 a.m. Idk thats kinda y i asked u

(At this point, I give this kid's number to someone at the party who decides to pose as "Tyler" who txts him and gets out of him that his name is Cody B_____. )

1:21 a.m. Dont be shy cody. just tell me.
1:22 a.m. I dont think this is shannon
1:24 a.m. Y dont u think its me?
1:25 a.m. Cuz u dont act like that
1:26 a.m. I had a couple drinks. Sorry. Do u still like me?
1:28 a.m. since when do u drink
1:29 a.m. It was wine. Is that bad?
1:30 a.m. Lol that is nothing! How r u any drunk at all
1:31 a.m. I'm jk. Just acting tarded.

(At this point, there are now TWO additional people txting him, one of which has just told him that she's chained to the bed in a skimpy costume with handcuffs & whips & chains.)

1:32 a.m. Those ppl keep fucking txting me and their talking about whips and shit lol
1:33 a.m. Ignore em. There dumb.

(One friend can no longer help herself, so she calls Cody acting COMPLETELY insanely - telling him that she's heartbroken because she bought a costume that he asked her to buy and she ended up being handcuffed to her own bed for an hour because she lost the key and had to call a locksmith. The charade continues for a good length of time, all the while, fifteen of us are absolutely ROLLING on the floor laughing our asses off at this kid who has YET to catch on that he's NOT talking to Shannon. LMAO!)

1:39 a.m. Whoa..
1:40 a.m. Dude. Wtf?
1:41 a.m. They just called me and i swear that bitch is possesed!
1:42 a.m. Alexa and me r leaving soon. Shes a freak.
1:43 a.m. Who is
1:43 a.m. Brittany is. The one that called u.
1:44 a.m. Where r u
1:45 a.m. My cousins house
1:45 a.m. Where is that
1:47 a.m. Ames
1:48 a.m. Where r u going 2. And how was i gona get there
1:50 a.m. Ummm ur car?
1:51 a.m. There is no fucking way i'm driving 2 ames and where are u going
1:53 a.m. Gonna call my mom. I think sumbody put something in my drink. i cant drive.
1:55 a.m. Extasy! Lol jk
1:55 a.m. Dude i know! Lol
2:01 a.m. If u go 2 the old middle ill sneak out but if u dont i wont
2:02 a.m. No. Gotta go home or im dead. ttyt k?
2:03 a.m. k
2:04 a.m. btw sorry my cuz and her friends r lame. We still cool?
2:04 a.m. Lol of course
2:05 a.m. Cool. Nite! Muah.

I retire for the game of "Txt me at 1 in the morning and you get what you deserve" has been concluded for the night. I slept well.

This morning I received this:

11:43 a.m. Alexa said she wasnt with u last nite

No shit, Sherlock?

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Dog snobs

Dog snobs piss me off.

People who search and search for that ever-ellusive "perfect" breed. Some are lab lovers, others are rott-collectors. It may be dobermans, danes, huskies, shepherds or chihuahuas. Whatever their preference is....let me say to these dog snobs: You're fucking stupid.

Yep. I said it. It's out there. You heard me.

You pour over the want ads and kennel club websites searching for that PERRRRRRRRFECT dog. You've got it in your mind that whatever breed it is you're looking for is the end-all, be-all of dogs (despite that many of those dogs are generations worth of inbreeding). They're perfectly house-trained, perfectly behaved around children, perfectly this, perfectly that.

Were you dropped on your head?

I mean seriously.

The ones that absolutely make me the craziest are the ones who look and look and look for that dog...they finally find it...then have the audacity to bitch and complain about the vet expenses that come with this dog. You fucking baffle me. Seriously.

Let me just get this straight...

You've spend anywhere from $250-1000 for a dog. An animal, I might remind you, that eats cat shit when you're not looking. It drinks from a giant ceramic bowl where you PEE. But you've spent all this you drop a half a K on a dog.

Now, you've got to get it neutered or spayed (unless you're the KING of the dog snobs and plan on breeding're nothing but an enabler to other dog snobs. You all deserve each other.) and get all its vaccines, shots and dewormings. The sterilization is easily $150. The shots & all that, at the cheapest, another $250. So you're into this animal for $900. (NINE HUNDRED dollars.....NIIIIIIINE HUUUUUUUUUUNDRED dollars!)

My first car didn't cost nine hundred dollars.

Now...if you're one of those who has chosen a "high-maintenance breed" such as a doberman,
rott or great dane you're also looking at tail and ear cropping. Let me just say here that you are the scourge of all dog owners. To put an animal through this cruel and traumatic event so it "looks" better is, without question, the most inhumane things you can ever do to an animal. If it weren't illegal, I'd drag you into a field somewhere with a steak knife and show you exactly what that poor dog is going through.

*collecting myself*

THAT being's another $300 for ears and/or tail. This of course does NOT take into consideration the costs that come up if they're not done correctly and have to be fixed. Easily add another $600.

So you owners of the high-maintenance breeds have now shelled out $1800 for a dog. A dog that digs through the litter box when you're gone.

I can feel my heart rate racing right now. I'm angry. I really am. I didn't realize just how passionate I am about this issue until I began this blog. I need to breathe...before I go ballistic.

*insert break here*

Meet Lucky.

This is my (at best guess) labrador/border collie mix. In 2005, this dog was stranded in Houma, Louisiana for at least twenty-one days in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. He went without food and was forced to drink flood water in order to survive. I don't know much about what his former family was like, nor do I know what his living conditions were like before the storm. What I do know, is that somebody found him lovable. He doesn't have AKC registrations and I doubt even his original owners could tell you what his bloodline looks like. But he is the most amazing dog I've ever owned.

You can tell in his eyes that all he wants is love, acceptance and the necessities in life. He wants a warm bed at night, dry from the rain and snow. He wants to be held, petted and played with. In return, he's the most devoted and loyal animal I've ever seen.

Does he drink out of the toilet and eat cat shit?

Yep. But I didn't pay $1800 for my shit-eating, toilet-lapping mutt.

I will save my thoughts on how much better spent that $1,800 would've been at some of the animal shelters for another day. My blood pressure is already high enough. I think I'll go snuggle with my mixed-breed love machine.

Sleep in peace tonight as your dog whines in agony with the tape around his ears, you heartless son of a bitch.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Hand Jive - Part 2

Well...the bruise on my knee is almost gone. Still tingles a bit if I hit it on something, but I'm limping along nicely.

I was quite cynical in my last blog. I know that now.

It took a great deal for me to get to the point where I could look at my audition as a good thing. I choked on the vocals and well, let's face it, I'm not Ginger Rogers. I'm not even Mister Rogers. And I'm okay with that. I know that I have rhythm. I know that I can dance when not under such incredible pressure.

So...why is it a good thing if I didn't get the part (cast list was posted today, btw)?

I stepped out of a zone of comfort that I have NEVER done before. Who the hell AM I anymore? I mean, really? I thought I had myself this great little niche carved in the world - wife, mom...the whole suburbia thing. Then I decide to open my own photography business. Next, I decide to share in a public blog very personal things about myself, my life, my marriage and my family that most people wouldn't be so open about. Now this.

I guess I feel like I get one spin at this wheel of life - why hesitate? Why hold back? Why be such a raging chicken shit all the time? So I bombed ONE audition. There's more. I'll get my toe in the door, then I'll train some with a voice coach (man, I need you, Ann!!!) and maybe some acting classes. or maybe not. Who knows.

Bottom line - I'm busting open fences I never thought I would. And if I must say so myself...I'm pretty proud of myself. :)

Saturday, May 24, 2008

My Confessions

These are my confessions

1. I am scared of anything in big numbers (swarms of bugs, groups of people, geese...omg, geese! I HATE geese!)
2. I love 80's movies and you would have a hard time beating me at 'Scene It'
3. I raised myself for two years, off and on, while my mother was sick.
4. I would love to own a designer purse..just once...but I'll *never* buy it for myself.
5. I have four tattoos, but I HATE needles!
6. I have been in love with three men throughout my life and they couldn't possibly be more different from one another. I am also still in contact with all three.
7. I love the dark and the quiet.
8. I would love to live in a big city for a year...just to see what it's like.
9. I love to lay outside in winter and listen to the click of snowflakes hitting the ground...but I haven't done it in years.
10. Clowns scare the hell out of me. Cirque du Soleil was my personal hell, though I did enjoy the show - as long as they stayed on the stage and nowhere near me.
11. I have always had the horrible habit of biting my nails...and can't seem to stop.
12. I have to sleep with at least one of my cats or I don't sleep well.
13. I used to have three bookshelves full of books, but have diminished my collection down to about one (possibly two). 90% of which I have read more than once.
14. I have been cooking since I was six. The first thing I ever made was chili.
15. I miss my mother more than any other person in the world.
16. I once performed at the Iowa State Fair in a kids' singing/dancing troupe.
17. I would LOVE to play Rizzo from Grease! at some point in my life.
18. I was a theater major in college, but then changed to criminal justice.
19. I *hate* spending money on myself...I always feel guilty.
20. I believe in angels and ghosts.
21. I have seen every episode of Roseanne at least once and watch the reruns nightly.
22. I care what people think of me, but lie and say I don't. (Me too, Julie)
23. I do not like children. No. Not even the least little bit. Yes, I know I have two of my own. I like those kids. hehe
24. I have had the same crush since I was 9 yrs old. My husband and I are actually friends with this guy now.
25. I love jewelry but own very little.
26. I nearly died in later pregnancy and child birth with my son. He nearly died as well.
27. I slept in my mother's bed with her until I was 11 - I was afraid to sleep in my own room.
28. I never know when to say no to people and end up overextending myself as a result.
29. I'm more content sleeping all day and being up all night.
30. I detest socks...but even more so if they're the least little bit dirty, worn-through or wet.
31. I want to have more girlfriends who include me in "girl" stuff, but refuse to ask for them.
32. When I'm mad, I clean, reorganize or rearrange my house.
33. I still believe I'm invinceable and make poor health choices as a result.
34. I hate talking on the phone, but I love texting and IM'ing (I can type faster than I can talk)
35. I come from a very closely-knit family, but since my mother's death, I don't have much to do with most of them.
36. I never knew my biological father.
37. I know how to shoot a gun better than most men.
38. I can't watch a child wiggle a loose tooth. It makes me nauseous.
39. So does the sound of someone vomiting.
40. I am wicked smart when it comes to grammar, spelling and punctuation.
41. I still have my childhood diaries and read them frequently.
42. I am star-struck whenever I get near a certain friend of mine.
43. I was writing checks and buying cigarettes at the grocery store when I was 14. (My mother had cancer and we lived in a small town...the clerks knew it was with her approval and by her request.)
44. I have never cheated in school.
45. I try very hard not to be jealous, but there is one person I'm insanely jealous of because of her friendship with someone I've wanted to be friends with since high school.
46. I hate wearing watches.
47. I once was a huge part of my church's praise team, but never sung a solo in church. I did, however, play Khaleel the Worm from Veggie Tales in a Vacation Bible School production.
48. I am nicer than people think.
49. I honestly don't follow world or national news - it has never interested me.
50. I also couldn't really care less about politics.
51. I want to have my photographs published someday.
52. I didn't learn to swim until I was 13 and then taught preschoolers how to swim the following year when I worked at the pool.
53. I once dated a bartender for the free drinks and backstage passes he was able to get me to concerts at his bar.
54. I was a cheerleader in high school but gave it up so I could help counsel other teens who had lost parents through death or divorce. Not once have I regretted that decision.
55. I rarely wear my wedding ring, though it's my favorite piece of jewelry.
56. If I won the lottery, I would probably be broke again shortly thereafter because I love spending money on other people.
57. I feel embarrassed when someone gives me compliments or asks my advice because they think I know more than they do.
58. Every cell phone that's "died" has been from drowning of some sort (the cat dripped water on the first two and I dropped the third one in the pond at Glendale cemetery).
59. I was never in Girl Scouts and never went to summer camp, though I wanted to badly!
60. I have bought meals for homeless people...and once even their dog.
61. I have also given my two cents to a person pretending to be homeless.
62. I have a better relationship with my former mother-in-law than I ever did when I was married to her son.
63. I still keep in touch with the first boy I ever kissed.64. I am a strong-willed person to hide my insecurities.
65. I once slept for 24 hrs straight.
66. I haven't had my hair grown past my shoulders since I was 5.
67. I prefer baths to showers.
68. I have an American flag that was carried by my father in Vietnam.
69. I have always wanted to write a book, but feel I don't know enough about any one particular subject to write it well.
70. I have over 11 gigs of pictures on my hard-drive, over 6,000 physical pictures and at least a thousand negatives in my possession.
71. I've never seen Star Wars.
72. I can't watch Saturday Night Fever because of the bridge scene.
73. My favorite food in the entire world is soup. I have dozens of recipes, but my favorite, by far, is my mom's homemade tomato.
74. I don't like plain chocolate.
75. I hate riddles.
76. I love to peel sunburns.
77. I can pick up on almost any accent within five minutes of talking to someone (British, Southern, Minnesotan, Middle-Eastern, Chicagoan, East Coast, etc)
78. I have a closer relationship with my son than I do my daughter.
79. I can't sleep with a light on if I'm in bed for the night.
80. I have never won first place for anything in my life, but have come in second many times: an art contest in 3rd grade, a spelling bee in 7th grade, a lip sync contest in 9th grade, a national fashion design competition for doll clothes when I was 8.
81. I wasn't able to wear flipflops until I was 33.
82. I have a bottle of perfume that belonged to my mother...from 1985.
83. I hate barking dogs, screaming kids and loud cars - noise bothers me greatly.
84. I've never passed out, but I was given a roofie once on vacation in Philadelphia.
85. I once burnt so badly on a tanning bed that I had stripes like toast and smelled like burnt flesh for a week.
86. I was once given a pig for Christmas by my parents...and still have trouble eating pork products.
87. I've been wearing high heels since I was in 5th grade.
88. I wear fake toenails on my big toes because I lost most of mine to ingrown nails in high school.
89. I would love to be pregnant one more time, but only if I didn't have to raise the child myself.
90. I cured myself of arachnophobia by holding a tarantula at a petting zoo.
91. I dropped out of high school in 10th grade at the encouragement of my high school guidance counselors despite the fact that I've always been a good student. (Don't worry...I went back a month later.)
92. I have kept every video tape I ever had with New Kids on the Block on them...and still watch them from time to time.
93. I refuse to share my meatloaf recipe with anyone.
94. I've had glasses since I was 2 yrs old and would *LOVE* to get Lasix done.
95. I never snuck out of the house when I was a teenager.
96. I got drunk when I was 2½ at my brother's graduation party.
97. I feel like I've stepped into my mother's role in our family - organizing family events, being a memory keeper (pictures, family stories, etc.)...and while most of the time I'm glad to have that role, it is sometimes a burden to me.
98. I still remember the first nightmare I ever had.
99. I've never lived anywhere but Iowa...and probably never will. And I'm okay with that.
100. I am handier around the house than my husband is. (But he's better with the laundry!)

Friday, May 23, 2008

Born to Hand-Jive, Baby

Yeah...umm..not quite.

My audition was today. 6pm.

I showed up about a quarter after five so I'd be close to the front of the list to audition and could hopefully get out of there earlier.

5:15 - I make my way upstairs and fill out the audition info sheet, mark down my experience (that was the easiest part. I have NONE!), list time conflicts (again, super easy - NONE!) and take my head shot. I am number 8. My lucky number!! Yay! Wooho....wait. 8's not my lucky number. SIX is. Shit.

5:30 - the lobby has begun to fill up with young girls and boys. Okay..not 5 or 6...but 18, 19 yr-old kids. I felt SO old and fat. Their parents should all be investigated by DHS - I dont think they're feeding their children! What the HELL have I gotten myself into? Oh..and they allll seem to know each other. I must figure out how to break into this social circle and use this camaraderie to my advantage.

5:45 - Tonia, my dear friend who has been kind enough to drive me to Des Moines learns that this audition that I thought might take an hour or two is now looming toward being a FOUR hour audition. We overhear that the choreographer isn't even scheduled to arrive until 8pm. Tonia groans inwardly, I know it...she's fighting a migraine as it is. Bless her heart, she decides to not leave me stranded. *kiss* She does, however, choose to retreat to the silence of the parking lot.

6:10 - we all enter the inner sanctum. The red velvet curtains are closed, the directors are sitting at their table in the back of the auditorium and the accompanist is at her assigned location on the stage. Smiling and encouraging is she.

6:15 - the first of 63 people begin to sing.

6:40ish - I garble my way through the first verse of "When you're good to mama" I project well, I think. I do fear that my legs knocking together distracted the directors. Not all bad. Maybe they'll see that I've got rhythm. Bonus. :)

7:10 - the only other tone-deaf person in the audition bumbles his way through "Mr Cellophane." Ironic that we both should choose a "Chicago" song to annihilate.

8:13 - Break. Yay. I can go call my husband and tell him how COMPLETELY out of my league I am and let him convince me to come home and skip the dance part. His voice is kind and encouraging. Bastard!

8:20 - I step back into the auditorium to see all these pretty, pretty princesses who were dolled up for their singing are now slouched out in knit capris, leggings and these nylon sock-things that only cover their toes. WTF? Can't their parents buy them full socks? Where are their shoes? Who's raising these children...wolves?! I refrain from tsking my tongue and instead "stretch" out my legs a bit.

8:30 - we're herded up on stage. All 63 of us. I'm short. I can't see Allison, the choreographer. I miss a step. Shit.

8:31 - I hear in the loudspeaker of my head - Fat and Clumsy - party of one! My table is open. Great.

8:32 - I trip my way through the first part of the lesson. Not bad - the chassé isn't bad, but I still can't get my knees to do that closed/open/closed/knee fold thing. I'm too old for this shit. This is *NOT* the hand jive, Allison!! Fortunately, there are about 15 other people on stage with me, so I can watch the Barbie in front of me. Whew.

8:53 - I fumble to learn a move where I spin, do a jump up with jazz hands, then crouch to the stage, stretch out my feet behind me like a push up, roll over and pop back up on my feet. Oh, NOW we're talking entertainment. I hit the stage and my wrists pop. At least something popped, cuz it sure wasn't me. Oh wait...was that a popping sound my knee made when it slammed into the stage? Maybe.

9:14 - "We'll have you come up on stage in numerical order in sets of 3 to audition. Listen for your number." Whoa. WTF....sets of THREE? What the hell was the last hour? Weren't they paying attention? Why are we doing this on such a big stage with such a small number of people? Awww crap.

9:26 - Me, some bubbly young guy named Andreas (part of that elite group of neglected children I mentioned earlier) and a Barbie with legs that go all the way to her neck head up on stage. Andreas now identifies himself as Satan by setting his feet firmly upstage...putting me in the front. I try to bargain with the Devil. He stands firm. You little shit. I will hunt you down.

9:27 - The music starts. I chassé, I shimmy, I windmill...and I panic. I know it showed on my face. I insert a quick hand-jive move to improv. I hear the choreographer giggle. I pick back up - step, giggle, turn, kick, mutter "crap" under my breath, dig, jump up, jazz hands. WHAM...fuck. Hard stage. Face first. Roll over (yes...this is supposed to be a graceful hop belly first to the floor) jump up. Handjive. Where the hell did I go wrong? I had the chassé and the handjive. Everything in between is a blur.

9:28 - Allison tells me she liked my little ad-lib. Great. She's amused.

9:41 - Repeat 9:27, except leave out the shimmy, kick and dig. I think you can leave out the jump up, too.

9:44 - I'm OUTTA here.

9:46 - I realize as I ease into the car just how much pain my body is in with all this popping and slamming. I burst into tears because I've just made a COMPLETE ass of myself in front of 63 people who know what the hell they're doing (and are able to recognize that I don't) and 4 directors who choose my fate...Rizzo or the third chorus girl from the left.

10:05 - I text the friends who encouraged me throughout the night via cell and tell them that I've completed my goal - I've auditioned for Grease! and won't be doing it again for quite some time.

I am now heading to bed with a muscle relaxer and a newfound contempt for the hand-jive.

Born to hand-jive, my ass.

Friday, April 11, 2008

You Are My Sunshine

he•ro (hîr’o) n. 1.In mythology and legend, a man, often of divine ancestry, who is endowed with great courage and strength, celebrated for bold exploits, and favored by the gods. 2. A person noted for feats of courage or nobility of purpose, esp. one who has risked or sacrificed his or her life. 3. A person noted for special achievement in a particular field: the heroes of medicine. 4. The principal male character in a novel, poem, or dramatic presentation.
My mother never did anything to make herself famous, certainly wasn’t the main character in a book or movie, and she had no role in mythology, but she was my hero just the same.

The hurdles in my mother’s life were numerous. She was born during the Great Depression and struggled all her life to get ahead. When my mother was in her twenties, her father was killed suddenly in a train-automobile collision. Filling the shoes of “single mom,” she was married and divorced three times. But my mother’s biggest battle was one that took her life: her fight with cancer.

She was diagnosed with colo-rectal cancer shortly before her forty-ninth birthday and my thirteenth. For two years, she endured surgery after surgery, which robbed her not only of her physical strength but also taxed her emotional strength. She also suffered through sickening chemotherapy and cell-destroying radiation treatments. My round, soft-skinned, sleek-haired mother became a bald, bloated, blotchy-skinned woman who faced every day knowing she was one day closer to her last. Her life was marked not with a calendar but with a timer that told her to empty the next compartment in the pill case that sat on her nightstand.

I remember once during one of her sickest bouts she looked at me and said, “I’m so sorry, honey. You’re so young…I know you’d rather be out with your friends. You shouldn’t have to be takin’ care of some sick old lady. I’m sorry to be such a pain.” She was apologizing to me as if she had some sort of control over her disease. Mom was always like that, though. No matter who was to blame for whatever happened, mom was always the one to feel bad.

The last few months of her life were difficult for both of us. Despite dozens of prescriptions, Mom was always in constant pain. The medicine she took only confused her and made her hallucinate. She never felt better; she just thought she did. When she “came out from under”, the pain would envelope her again in a darkness that I pray I never know. She would cry for hours on end. Not completely understanding it all, I asked her once why she was crying. Her response was a loud sob, “Because I hurt, goddammit!” It was my turn to feel bad now. Mom had always taken care of me when I was sick and now, when she needed me most, I couldn’t do the same for her. I’d never felt so helpless in my entire life.

I was at school when I found out my mother had died. The next few days were consumed with making final arrangements. Although I’d cried, the true weight of what had happened didn’t set in until the day of her funeral. Before the service, I stood at her side with my hand between her arm and ribs, the same place I’d held her when I helped her in and out of bed so many times before. I looked down at my mother’s face…her beautiful, loving, peaceful face. I’d never seen her more content. I started talking to her. I told her goodbye, first of all. Then I told her how much I was going to do with my life and how proud she’d be of me. I told her that I loved her, but for the first time, I didn’t hear, “I love you, too.” This hurt so badly. In her entire life, Mom never ended a conversation with anyone before saying “I love you.”

I began reminiscing about my childhood and how close my mother and I had always been. I remembered the silly jokes we’d shared, the crazy things we’d done and the songs she used to sing to me. I began singing to her:

You are my sunshine. I started to cry.

My only sunshine. You make me happy when skies are gray. A tear rolled off my cheek and splashed against her hand.

You’ll never know dear, how much I love you. I paused, drawing a deep breath.

Please don’t take my sunshine away. She was gone. I stood there for the better part of an hour just singing and crying.

It’s been almost twenty years since I stood next to my mother’s casket. I still hear her voice and chuckle when I see how alike we are. Mom fought an endless battle, but she kept smiling and looking for the silver lining in the clouds. Sometimes she was even lucky enough to find it. I know she must’ve felt like giving up, but something inside her urged her on. She saw the good in things and knew her fight had a purpose: to inspire me. She surrendered her life in order to teach me to appreciate mine. I guess now that I think about it, she is the textbook definition of “hero.”

Sunday, April 6, 2008

I bet you think this blog is about you

I've never been a vain person.


No, seriously....I am not a vain person. At least I wasn't, until recently.

I've never considered myself beautiful....and most days, I don't even think I'm pretty. But I'd take those "ugly" days over this anyday. The middle of January, I started having problems with facial swelling and Bell's Palsy. My kinesiologist confirmed my suspicions that it was all related. He's wrong.

I'm pissed about it.

We could've been treating this differently this whole fucking time if he'd taken a few minutes to look it up. But I digress.

I'm sitting here right now typing this with limited visibility out of my left eye and virtually none from my right. My right eye is swollen shut and my left eye is pretty swollen too. Because of my vision the way that it is to begin with, my left eye has always been weaker than my right, so believe me when I say this is probably the most unpleasant I've ever felt. I can't read because it hurts my eyes. I can't watch TV because...well, let's face it, I can't fucking see anything. I can't sit in here and blog all damn day...again..the vision thing. Fortunately for me, I type by feel so I've at least got that going for me. Anyway...I was saying....I'm sitting here with limited visibility this morning. My upper lip is slightly puffy and there's a lump in my throat as well, also caused by this.

My first episode of this was only witnessed by my husband, kids, my doctor and his staff. I didn't really have to be seen in public...thank God. My ego is fragile enough without worrying about little kids bursting into tears at the sight of me.

This most recent episode began last night at a friend's house. I was surrounded by friends, so it technically wasn't a "public" place, but I was still self-conscious. My children, along with a few others, could tell something was wrong. It started as an irritation on my left eye. I got some drops and thought that'd be the end of it. Then I felt the itching begin and I knew it was going to be a long night. It began swelling shortly thereafter and within two hours, it was really bad. I managed to stick it out, though. Like I said, I had friends there, whom I knew wouldn't judge me. I made it longer there than I ever had when my hives start in.

We did decide to come home around 10:30 or so. Around midnight, the other eye began itching. Shit. Here we go again. Sure puffed up twice as bad as the other one and was swollen half-shut by the time I went to bed. I woke up this morning and it was swelled shut. I literally cannot see without forcefully opening my eyelid...and quite frankly, that's painful, so I'm not going to do it.

You never really realize just how sensitive you are about how you look until something like this happens, though. I never considered myself a vain person. Ever! But you couldn't pay me enough to be seen in public right now by strangers. I don't like being scrutinized for any reason....and being a fat girl is bad enough...but being a fat, UGLY girl is even worse.

This fucking sucks.

I'm going back to bed.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Square Peg in a Round Hole

I’ve never been one surrounded by dozens of close friends. I’ve had a lot of friends that I’m comfortable with, but not ones that I’m particularly close to.

Growing up, I was best friends with someone who totally understood me. She was compassionate and kind, fun and fun-loving. Her mother was sick like mine, so she "got it." She could relate to me. However, when she was 26, Rebecca died very suddenly of congestive heart failure. I was devastated. It was always hard for me to be friends with other girls because I didn’t trust them. I always felt like they had hidden agendas, so when I lost Becc, I shut myself off from friendships with other women. I just knew (even as unrealistic as this sounds) they’d either hurt me or leave me. I had some female friends, but I didn’t share my innermost self with them. There was too much risk involved. I wasn’t that strong. I kept the few friendships I had as shallow as possible. I was too afraid.

It wasn’t until many years later that I allowed myself to get close to another female. Fortunately for me, she didn’t back down when I didn’t let her through my crusty shell right away. She just stuck in there....and I eventually opened up to her. She’s still a wonderful friend of mine and I know I can trust her with anything.

But what about friendships with other women? I’m part of a group of people that most people in the world don’t understand. I won’t go into details, as they’re really not important...but in that group of people, there are so many women who are close. They hang out together, they connect on amazing levels. They do things together, just as women. I have thought that I was a part of their sorority, but when I see picture after picture posted on their profiles here (and elsewhere) I realize that I’m not.

I’m a square peg in a round hole.

I see the relationships these women have and I’m jealous. I know that’s a stupid emotion. I hate that I feel that way, but I really am jealous. I feel like there’s something wrong with me and that’s why I’m not included. Is there? Am I lacking in some way? Am I too _____? Am I not enough ______? Is it my fault that these women don’t want to include me? What am I doing wrong?

But I look at the pictures again....and I notice women that I wouldn't really want to be close to. I've seen one of them make a friend of mine's life a living hell - levels of stalking you see on the Lifetime channel. I don't want to be friends with her. So I ask myself I want to be friends with THESE specific women...or do I just want a group of women like this to be close to?

God, I haven’t felt this out of place since high school...should that mean something, too?

I’m not a bad why do I feel like an outcast?