Shit My Family Says, Kind Of.

So. I’m still feeling pretty shitty, but I’ve thought about it and I don’t want my last post of 2015 to be the angry, sad, mess that I wrote the other day.

This is going to be a “Shit My Family Says” post, but with cheating. Cheating because it’s shit I’ve already posted on my blog’s Facebook page. But maybe *gasp* you haven’t liked me on Facebook! Then, ALL THIS WILL BE BRAND NEW. Lucky, lucky you. Now go like my page.

If you have already liked my page, some of this might be new to you anyway, because Facebook has this stupid trick they call an “algorithm.” (I just gave up trying to spell that word and the red line went away. Huh.) Anyway, they want to show you what you want to see…and they guess what you want to see by what you “like” or share or comment on. So maybe THIS WILL ALL BE BRAND NEW TO YOU TOO.

And now, I present you with the Best Shit My Family Said in 2015:

And now, I change the title to the Best Shit From August to December 2015, because I am tired and I guess I post a lot.

 

The other day I was attacked by a horsefly and it bit me three times. I was seriously wounded with blood and everything. Yesterday I was looking at it to see if the swelling had gone down and my sweetly concerned son said, “Ohmygod, put that away, it’s so fat and gross!” So that’s how I found out that it is still swollen and he is a dick.”

 

I bribed my daughter when the doctor had to give her a shot.

 

6-yr-old: If you see any slime – stuff around here, don’t touch it because it’s my boogers.

She’s so considerate.

 

Husband: Sorry for being a pain in the ass.

Me: It’s okay.

Him: You always say okay. You never say, “You’re not a pain.”

Me: Yeah. Cause it’s okay.

 

6-yr-old hid a bunch of old Easter eggs in my bed. Under my pillow. Everywhere. This morning I woke up to discover that they weren’t all Easter eggs. Some of them were Silly Putty eggs. I now have silly putty all over my head. *Note: I was able to get the shit off my head, but there are still spots on my comforter that look really gross and NOT like Silly Putty if you know what I mean.

 

“I know that I have allergic reactions. I know they are sneaky. I know they can be dangerous. I know what they feel like.

But I just spent a damned HOUR absolutely CONVINCED that 6yo had brought home head lice, because my head was itching so bad.

It wasn’t until my entire body broke out with hives that I stopped giving her the side-eye.”

 

Haven't Folded laundry in so long, even my kids forgot what it was called.

 

“So, you guys know how I don’t know how to use my phone? Well. Yesterday was a Very Bad Day. I was laying in bed, just sobbing, completely losing my shit, and I hear these clicking noises. Click click click click click. I look over and find MY PHONE TAKING UNAUTHORIZED PICTURES OF ME. Unbelievable. I have like 10 pics of my red, snotty face. This thing is out to get me.”

 

6yo: Wow, that’s really melted.

Me: You have to eat ice cream cones fast.

Her: I wasn’t even eating it! I just sat it down here to save for later.

 

My Facebook ‘memory’ from a year ago today:

You know you’re raising your child right when you tell her “not right now” and she says, “Fine. I guess monsters will just eat your face.”

 

Last night we were playing this Head’s Up app where you hold your phone up to your forehead and people try to make you guess what’s on the screen. We’ve played it for hours, two nights in a row, and I just can’t stop loving it.

Then.

It was my turn, and my husband shouts a clue at me. “Our 20s! What we were doing in our 20s! Where we spent most of our 20s!”

My children looked at me expectantly while everything, EVERY SINGLE THING I did back in the day flashed before my eyes. I could NOT think of EVEN ONE THING that I wanted to say in front of the kids.

I’m not good under pressure. I did lots of good-person things in my 20s. I just can’t think of them when you put me on the spot like that, jerk.

The answer was “a bar.”

 

Original snack with name pc cropped

 

“I literally just said, “you’re not sleeping in my bed with a box on your head.”

What has happened to my life? I’ve turned into a foul-mouthed Dr. Seuss.”

 

“I am so screwed. I just made a new rule and my 6-YEAR-OLD daughter replied with, “Eh, you’ll forget about that by tomorrow.”

 

Today my husband told me a lot of things, as he does often. “You’re beautiful.” “You’re a great writer.” “Taking care of yourself is the only thing you *have* to do.”

My favorite?

“She reminds me of you. Wears a black leather jacket and boots and is an asshole to everyone.”

I love that man.

 

“Stats as of 9:45 a.m.

Inanimate objects screamed at/threatened: Approximately 34.

Times I’ve cried: Once

Tasks accomplished: Two, because I put both “scream” and “cry” on my to-do list.”

 

In case you’re wondering if my state of mind has improved, I just looked in my t-shirt drawer and yelled, “Fuck you, you sneaky bastards!”

 

I’m not used to people being at my house during the day.

I had just taken a bath, opened my bathroom door a crack, and said, “I hope no one is in here, cause I’m coming out and all I’ve got on is sneakers and a little bit of cheese.”

Either they didn’t hear me or I’ve found a very effective child repellent.

***I found the cheese in my shoe, if you were wondering.

 

Things my 13yo has said to me in the last 30 minutes:

Me: GET IT IN GEAR!

Him: *sitting in the floor, not dressed, banging a spring against his bed, looks up, with a completely straight face*  MOM. I’m in 5th gear.

Him: *screaming like a maniac.*

Me and everyone else: *running* What happened?! Are you okay?

Him: Oh, man, it was awful! I tried to put this tube top on the cat and–

And that’s when I walked away.

 

“Omg, my 6yo has like a hundred million presents under the tree.

You know what she’s crying about this morning?

She’s afraid that after Christmas I won’t let her have the bowl of pinecones on the table.

I could’ve saved so much money had I known the little shit just wanted seeds.”

 

6yo is playing with Barbies, all dressed up in their finery. I assume they are attending some ball, or maybe a wedding. I walk by and hear this:

Barbie #1: I never liked him. It was all part of my mission.

Barbie #2: We’ve got him now. Good job, agent.

 

Annnd, that’s all I’ve got in me right now, folks. Happy New Year. I love you guys. ❤

 

 

 

 

 

 


These Dark Days.

This is not going to be a good post. A funny post. A nice post.

“Leave while you still can.” I feel like that’s from Indiana Jones or some shit.

I don’t know, I can’t even remember to put the taco seasoning in the taco soup.

That’s what broke me. I spent Thursday pretending to be okay. In vain, I suspect. No. No. You know what? I’m a goddamn professional when it comes to pretending. I probably looked like a stuck-up bitch, but I was there, and I wasn’t curled up on the floor crying.

My daughter’s Christmas party. I made it.

Then came home and was violently ill.

Friday. Sick. Panic attacks. More sick. More panic attacks. Migraine.

Saturday. Lightheaded. Headache. Everything hurt. Panic attack. I laid down, hoping to wake up and not be this fucking disaster, but I dreamed about being a bad person 20 fucking years ago. LET ME GO!

Anyway. I put a chair in the kitchen to try to make dinner. My husband and kids were having Family Game Night and I. Just. Couldn’t. Just fucking couldn’t.

So I sat in that chair and stirred, and it hurt, so I went and laid in bed until it should’ve been ready, and my son asked, all excited, “Is it done?” and I burst into tears because I remembered that I hadn’t put the seasoning in.

I’ve been crying since then, which has not helped my headache at all, surprise, surprise.

I want to see all my doctors, in the same room, and DEMAND to know why I’m taking all this medicine AND I’M STILL FUCKING BROKEN?!

I know that’s not how it works. There is no magic pill to make me all better. I know I will have good days and bad days, but I am so tired.

I’m so tired of fighting to just be “okay.”

Not “great.”

Not “a productive member of society.”

Just “alive.”

Or “out of bed.”

I’ve lowered my fucking goals and expectations about as low as they can go, and I still can’t reach them.

I did these things yesterday to make myself feel better:

Listened to music. Took a bath. Read. Colored. Played games.

But even though I spent almost an entire fucking day doing what I’m supposed to do, “practicing my coping skills,” I still feel like screaming.

WHY? WHY DO I FEEL LIKE THIS? WHY NOW? WHY CAN’T I JUST…STOP? STOP BEING THIS FRAGILE, CRUMBLING, SHELL OF A PERSON?

Today, I hate myself. Again.

Maybe I will tomorrow too.

Either way, I’ll fucking be here to find out.

semicolon tat

My story isn’t over.

 

 


Oh. Deer.

When I was born, my family lived here, in rural Arkansas. Shortly after that, my Dad joined the Army and away we went. I spent around 9-10 years on Army bases, then we moved back home when I was in the 5th grade. This is important to note, in light of what I’m about to tell you.

I’m not against hunting; I’ve just never really been interested in it. There were no “youth hunts” on Army bases.

The first post-hunted deer (I’m trying to save your sensibilities here, people) I saw was in the back of my uncle’s truck, and I was about nine. I cried. I petted its nose, and whispered prayers and apologies, and wouldn’t speak to anyone the rest of the day. (I TOLD you guys, I’ve ALWAYS BEEN LIKE THIS.)

I didn’t come in contact with another deer until I was about 17. This time I was running in the dark and ran INTO the carcass of the deer, which was hanging from a tree in our yard. I feel like that’s something you really ought to mention to people. “Hey, there’s a giant dead thing with horns around back.” Or something.

Anyway. So I’m not a complete moron about guns. I like to target shoot. (I am good.) (Well, I’m okay.) (I’m not terrible, jeez!) I just don’t really even think about deer season except to tell the kids to wear orange if they go in the woods.

Well. I know that my 13-year-old hunts and fishes with his dad and grandparents at their place. Long as he’s safe, have at it, right? They know what they’re doing, my son loves it, so it’s cool.

Then last weekend I got a Very Excited call from my son–he’d shot his first deer. I was really proud of him and it was awesome to hear the story of his amazing shot and how much fun he’d had. It really was. It’s always great to see him joyous and happy. Then I hear, “You better get ready for a lot of deer meat headed your way ha ha ha.”

Ha. Ha. Ha.

To me, this meant, “I hope you have room in your freezer for a few prepackaged select cuts of deer meat.”

So I said, “Ha ha ha, well, okay, but I can’t eat it and I don’t know how to cook it, so send instructions! Ha ha ha!”

Ha. Ha. Ha.

Then I get a text as they are on their way to bring Thing 2 home.

His Gram: “A lot of meat & the head coming your way. The head needs to be hung up high in a tree. I’m sorry, he wanted to bring it home!”

Me: Oh shit.

Her: “The meat needs to soak in plain water overnight & then packaged & frozen then I will find you a couple delish recipes.”

Me: OH SHIT.

Her: *laughing her ass off* SORRY! Who knew he would get one?! HAHAHAHAHAHA *laughs forever.*

Me: Oh…shit.

So, at this point, my main concern is that my husband isn’t home, it’s dark, and there is a HEAD on its way here that I am going to have to somehow, someway, get up a tree.

To prepare for this, I put on my boots and paced, thinking furiously. I came up with zero ideas. None.

20151116_201208

Maybe because I have the wrong kind of boots?

Anyway.

They got there and my son was all, “LOOK! LOOK AT THIS! DO YOU WANT TO TOUCH HIS TONGUE?”

And I was all, “That’s so awesome pleasepleasegetitawayfromme.”

Then they were like, “So, do you have any rope?” and I was like, “OH! Good idea! Yeah! Rope!” Then I ran in the house, did a few circles chanting “rope, rope, rope” and then went back outside to do the same thing out there.

Thankfully, Thing 2’s Papa is a Good, Good Man and he found something that would work AND found a tree (not the tree by where I drink my coffee, THANK YOU SO MUCH) and he and my son hung the thing up. I basically just stood there, wringing my hands and nervous talking.

THEN comes the transfer of the meat. Thing 2’s Gram was snickering at me. SNICKERING at me! It was a loving snicker, but a snicker nonetheless.

They have a big plastic tub, presumably full of meat. When I saw it, my eyes lit up. I had visions of never opening that tub. Then she said these horrible words: “I need to take this with me.”

Shit.

We trooped into the kitchen for the big reveal. My son started pulling meat out of the sack like he was some sort of, fuck, I don’t know, a hunter I guess.

Once the sink was full of meat and my son was done shoving body parts in my face and his grandma was almost done laughing, I received my instructions for the next day. How To Package The Meat.

The following morning I was dismayed to find the deer still in the sink. There are no such creatures as Deer Fairies, in case you were wondering. I prepared myself for the job ahead.

By “prepared myself” I mean “looked everywhere and found nothing in which to wrap this meat.”

I had to improvise. In my defense, I WAS NOT READY FOR A….I don’t even know what this is called. I’ve got A LOT of learning to do before the zombie apocalypse, I’ll tell you that.

Anyway. So I used three coats of plastic wrap, two of wax paper, and then wrapped it all in duct tape. Seemed legit to me.

Because he told me it was a tenderloin. I think.
Because he told me it was a tenderloin. I think.
20151109_092453
Big Fatty Thing.
Possibly a butt.
Possibly a butt.
Really Big Thing
Really Big Thing.

I really want my son to be happy, and if he likes to hunt and fish, that’s great.

But I’m making a rule RIGHT NOW that I am not ever, ever, EVER duct taping a deer’s ass again.

Ever.


I hear the secrets that you keep…

…when you’re talking in your sleep…

You are so welcome for that earworm.

Don't be jealous of my jammies.

Don’t be jealous of my jammies.

I guess we’ve established that I’m not Really Awesome at life and things. When I’m awake, anyway.

Now I have learned a new trick, which is to be a mess even in my sleep.

I wake up every 2-3 hours a night anyway, so you would think that I wouldn’t have time for any nonsense.

But you’d be wrong, because while I may not have being a human adult perfected, I am a master weirdo.

So, a few months ago, I started talking in my sleep. I believe people usually sleep through this. I wake up mid-sentence and look expectantly at my husband for his response…and see that he is sound asleep.

Apparently, I’m able to hold entire conversations with a snoring man.

One night I woke up talking, realized that I was the only one fully engaged in what was no doubt a scintillating discussion, and went back to sleep. Then I woke myself up AGAIN, talking, and this time I was telling my husband what had just happened. Yes. I woke up explaining to snores that I had woken up talking to snores.

I’ve also fallen out of my king-size bed twice, woken up just as I was about to squirt nasal spray in my eye, and had vivid dreams (nightmares) involving denim jumpsuits, the price of cheese puffs, and being unable to move. When I wake up I still can’t move, but once I can, I’m usually so relieved that I’m not wearing head-to-toe denim or cheese puffs that I don’t even care.

The newest inexplicable occurrence happens when I get up in the morning.

Every morning there is a song stuck in my head, a song that I know I didn’t hear anytime recently, so I guess my crazy ass dreams come complete with soundtracks.

First it was Baby Got Back (which actually led to an epiphany. “She got an L.A. face and an Oakland booty.” Not an open booty, which is how I’ve been singing it since approximately the eighth grade. For fuck’s sake.)

Next it was early Metallica. “Anywhere I roam, where I lay my head is home, YEAH.”

After that I woke up singing old school Whitney Houston. “How will I know if he really loves me, I say a prayer with every heartbeat…”

Since I wake up (doing strange shit) all hours of the night, I always think, “screw this, I’ll just get up.” Then I’ll see that it’s 12 or 1 or 3 a.m. and I’ll make myself lay back down until at least 4:30. Then I go sit on the porch so I don’t wake anyone else up, and get harassed by the extremely rude armadillo who has taken up residence under my porch. It’s almost enough to get me to stop singing and go back to sleep, where my husband responds appropriately.

That never happens when I’m awake.

Do you do anything weird in your sleep? Am I the only one who has almost blinded myself with nasal spray? Surely not.


Depression Lies, Especially in September

This month they call September is fucking brutal. It’s Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, and that is so ironic to me that I can’t even stand it. September sneaks up on me. The memories sneak up on me. The pain comes at me and I feel trapped. Stuck in this mind that won’t forget, that won’t cooperate, that won’t just let me be.

So, I enjoyed the fleeting success that came with a recent post, and it really was lovely. But my anxiety was telling me that I did not deserve the compliments, the comments, the shares, the likes. My depression was telling me that I tricked everyone because I am a terrible mom. My anxiety was telling me that I needed to respond to every single sweet and wonderful person who reached out to me, but my depression was keeping me from all but the most necessary tasks.

I had an emergency session with my psychiatrist on Monday and I am feeling a little better. Talking to her made me remember that there is hope. I will not always feel like this. Yes, I will feel like this again, but when I do, I will wait this bitch out and I will laugh again and love again and still be here when the motherfucker comes back again.

I don’t know if you have heard of Project Semicolon, but I got myself a new tattoo to celebrate making it through the weekend.

My story isn't over.

My story isn’t over.

The following is part of a post I wrote shortly after Robin Williams passed, right before another September.

….I am not alone.

Out there, somewhere, is someone struggling as hard as I am struggling. Out there, somewhere, someone is giving up and someone is still fighting. Someone is feeling just as hopeless and empty as I feel. Someone is putting one foot in front of the other even though it hurts. Someone is hiding under the covers. Someone is crying. Someone is dying.

I understand.

I know the feeling and it is not just one of giving up, giving in, letting go of the pain. Depression is insidious and it lies. It will tell you that your family, your friends, everyone would be better off without you. That you are a useless weight around their necks and that ending your life would be a gift to them.

When you write it out like that it seems so stark, so cold, so untrue. But these are the thoughts that swirl when my head is buried under the pillow. These are the thoughts that I share with others who fight this monster every single day.

If you are reading this, I promise that I will keep putting one foot in front of the other. I promise that I will not listen to the lies, I will wait them out, I will drown them out, and I will keep going.

Come with me?

Here is a link to NAMI: National Alliance on Mental Illness, with numbers you can call if you are in crisis, and a lot of information regarding mental illness.


It’s Slug Season! Yes, that’s a thing.

Slug Season is a thing.

This is not a slug. This is a snake looking in my window. But if you think I’m going hunting for pictures of slugs, you don’t know me very well.

In honor of Slug Season (that’s a thing. A thing I just made up), I decided to revamp this post from a million years ago.

We have a large wooden deck on the back of our house. We also have a drainage problem. And a slug problem. I’m not positive these things are all related, because I’m not a fucking scientist, but I suspect they are.

A few days ago I went out and saw a big fat gross slug on the deck.

Me: Ewww! Did you see that thing?

Husband: No, what?

Me: THE GIANT SLUG RIGHT THERE!

Him: Shit, is that why my shoe is so sticky?

Me:..

Him: *He heads back inside*

Me: Watch ou—

Him: SHIT!

Yes, the big idiot stepped on it again. Then presumably tracked slime all over the house, I don’t know.

So this story is about four years old, right after we moved into this house.

I woke up early and first thing let the dogs out. I’m lazy, so instead of turning on a light or possibly paying attention to what I was doing, I just stuck my hand out in the dark to get the water bowl.

I didn’t look at it until I realized that my hand felt….slimy. My only defense is that I hadn’t had coffee yet. And that I am an idiot.

There. Were. Baby. Slugs. On. Me. MANY TINY SLUGS TOUCHING ME. TOUCHING ME!

This was when everything started to get a little blurry.

The dish was no longer in the house, so I can only assume I threw it.

My robe was in the hall floor.  I vaguely remember ripping it off and sprinting into the kitchen while my ever-so-helpful husband just stared.

He says he thinks I was gagging.  I really couldn’t say.

I do know that while I was in the kitchen scrubbing vigorously at my gooey hands (OMG, I might barf and this was like 4 years ago) he widened his stupid eyes and pointed at my back.

I very rapidly became naked and then equally rapidly became violent, once I realized he was a lying shit.

After I felt relatively clean, I calmed down to a state of shock, just staring blankly and mourning my lost innocence.

Him: *trying not to laugh, but not trying very fucking hard*

Me:.

Husband: *snicker snort* So. What are you doing to do with your robe? *innocent face*

Me:.

Him: You just going to leave your shit laying there in the floor so all those slugs can just wander off all over the house?”

Me: *glares the glare of a thousand deaths*

Husband: *does not die or even be mildly injured*

He was clearly not concerned about my safety, sanity, or aversion to animated slime.

Me: Obviously the only logical thing to do is burn the robe.

Him: I KNEW you would say that. It’s not a fucking vampire, Stephanie.  You don’t have to cut its head off, burn it, and bury it wrapped in chains.

Hmmph.  I guess it’s just as well I didn’t tell him my whole  plan, which was to burn the robe and then the front porch.

This is war, motherfucker.  My perimeter has been breached. 


Facebook is All Up in My Business. Literally.

I’ve been sick the past few days, first with a migraine, then a serious allergic reaction which then caused another migraine. So I’ve just been a mess. I haven’t washed my hair or changed my clothes…I’m pretty fucking gross right now. But I have managed to brush my teeth at least once a day, so I feel like that’s a win for everyone.

Anyway. Before, during, and after a migraine I am always very slow thinking and confused. During an allergic reaction my blood pressure drops so I’m stupid then too.

So yesterday I sent a Facebook message to my friend Tara, but then I took a nap. When I woke up I was already out of my mind because I was getting a migraine AND I was super tired. I HAD JUST WOKEN UP, PEOPLE.

Sometimes getting in the bathtub helps my migraines. So I had napped…um…not clothed.

I woke up and saw that I had a Facebook message. I took my phone into the bathroom like people do and tried to read my message. Naked. While peeing.

SOMEHOW, instead of just showing me a message, I heard a strange ringing sound…not like a phone call…but kind of like a phone call. I didn’t know what was happening. I didn’t know if I had called someone, and if I had, then I had no idea who it might be. Suddenly I had this horrible thought that I might have just started a video chat.

I panicked. I admit it. I was NAKED, CONFUSED, and SITTING ON THE TOILET. So I threw my phone across the room. I cannot think of a single Facebook friend who I would want to see me naked, taking a piss, and barely coherent.

As I finished the details of urination, I heard a VOICE from my phone saying, “Hello? Hello?”

Now, the phone was facedown on the floor, but it has the back camera. And I still wasn’t sure what the hell was going on. I was still sure that I was not wearing clothes. Was someone looking through that little camera? Were they getting an upward view of my stuff?

I  was losing my shit for real, you guys. Losing it. I reached my arm as far away from me as I could, grabbed the phone, and ran back into my bedroom. I wasn’t thinking straight. Did I mention that I was still naked? I did what I assume any normal naked adult would do, which was shove the phone under some blankets and make a run for it.

After I found some clothes and tried to shake the cobwebs out of my brain (didn’t work), I delicately pulled the phone out and looked at it. It seemed okay. No voices were coming out of it.

I checked my messages and I had one from Tara asking if I was okay.

I answered back with, “Oh my fuck, did I just CALL you?”

She was like, “No, idiot.” So I told her what had happened and that I was scared to even touch my phone, and that I’d get on my laptop and chat.

Then, when I opened up messenger on my computer (phone safely shoved under a pillow) this is what I saw:

What. The. Fuck.

What. The. Fuck.

Obviously, I assumed this was her response to my accidental nude toilet video chat with who knows.

But. Tara says, “Wtf is that? I’ve never seen this in my life.”

I didn’t do it, she didn’t do it, Facebook was watching me pee, it was just too much. We agreed to put tape over all our cameras, hide our phones when we pee and/or are naked, and wear foil hats just in case.

THEN I get this message from my friend Michelle: “Hey gorgeous! Were you trying to get in touch with me?”

I told her the whole debacle and said, “I’m sorry if you saw me peeing.”

She laughed. And laughed. And laughed. And then finally told me that she DID NOT see me on the toilet. Whew.

She informed me that her phone had made a weird-ass noise and said it was me, voice messaging, so she did the obvious and answered it. Thankfully, she said the cameras were off. But that’s kind of an awkward situation, so maybe she was just trying to be nice instead of saying MY GOD you need to do some fucking landscaping and maybe stop eating so many poptarts!

Facebook was scaring me, but I was very thankful that nobody had to see me naked.

Then Michelle starts fucking with me, and I hear my phone making that weird ringing noise again and I almost run away from home and phones, and then my screen says Video Call so I just stared at it and nothing happened, although I DID have clothes on this time so I guess it would’ve been ok.

She’s all, “I wasn’t messing with you, I just wanted to see what would happen.”

WELL, MICHELLE, NOW YOU KNOW WHAT HAPPENS. I AM TRAUMATIZED FOR LIFE.

Michelle: We’re like cavemen seeing fire for the first time. AAAAAAAAAHHHHHH RUN AWAY!

Me: What happens if I do this….*jumps back and screams*

She had to go do grownup things like go car shopping with her husband without stabbing him. So she told me bye and to try not to show my twat to strangers.

I told her I could probably do that, but I didn’t think she could. (The car thing, not the twat thing.)

Then she had the bright idea that maybe she should do the twat thing while negotiating. “They might give us a discount if I just put it away for godsake.”

Me: If they aren’t giving you a good deal, just flash your vag. Do it.

Michelle: I will.

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I Am Not That Mom

I am Not that Mom

I am not that mom who sits on the floor with you playing My Little Pony for hours. I am not the mom who builds entire towns on Minecraft. I have never learned to play Pokémon and I never (ever) will. I am well aware of my failure in this aspect of parenting.

I am thankful for my husband, who excels in watching cartoons and playing video games. I smile when I see him and the kids tossing a football in the yard. (In the yard. No Throwing Balls in the House. Jesus.) I laugh when they wrestle and tickle and play, play, play.

I’m just not that mom.

I was the young soon-to-be mom, scared to death but determined, so determined, to bring you into this world and love you like no other. I was the single mother of two who worked long hours and still held dance parties with just my two boys where we sang at the top of our lungs and the laughter rang as loud as the music. Before you were even born, I was the mom eating cherry cheesecake so I could see you dance. (And because cheesecake.)

When I first saw you, I knew that you would hold my heart forever. Two more times I met my new sweet babies, and two more times my heart grew to wrap around all of you. When you were a baby, I was that mom who couldn’t sleep for looking at you. I can still feel you, so tiny, snuggled on my chest. When I see you asleep now, I still picture you curled up in footie pajamas, all wispy hair and dark lashes against perfect skin.

I was that mom who rocked you all night, patting and bouncing and shh, shh, shhing when you cried. I was the mom who panicked over every bump and bruise. I was the mom who kissed boo boos. I was the mom who spent untold hours waiting on casts for broken bones or bandages for cut fingers. (Safety scissors, my ass.) I was the mom whose leg you were firmly wrapped around the day we toured preschools. I was the mom who went to school online in order to work from home because you needed me.

I am the mom who signs notes and checks homework and packs lunches. I’m the mom who makes the doctor’s visits and dentist appointments and parent teacher conferences. I’m the mom who hasn’t worn anything but thrift store clothes for years so that you can go to school wearing clothes that are apparently hand-sewn by the famous athletes of the world.

I’m the mom who makes stupid jokes and sings off-key and acts sillier than I am just to see you smile. I’m the mom who wouldn’t trade those smiles for the entire world.

I’m the mom who loves you so much more than I could ever explain. And the mom who tries so hard to show you that.

But most times I feel like I am also the mom who is failing.

I’m the mom with chronic recurring depression. I’m the mom with generalized anxiety disorder. I’m the mom with PTSD. I’m the mom who has chronic migraines. I’m the mom with chronic pain. I’m the mom who sees more doctors than hairstylists. (Hahahahaha, I don’t even remember the last time I went to a stylist. But you have an appointment tomorrow.)

I am the mom who struggles every single day to accomplish the things that have to be done so that you can have a “normal” life. I am the mom who does your laundry even when I have to sit down to sort it. I’m the mom who makes sure the water bill gets paid so that you can shower. I’m the mom who clips your fingernails and buys you toothpaste and nags you to wear deodorant.

I’m also the mom who forgets things. Not the big stuff, like birthdays or Christmas, although there have been a few notes from the Tooth Fairy instead of cash. But I forget things that you already told me. I forget that when you were playing a video game yesterday, you scored 58 touchdowns and a free throw, and spawned…maybe a chicken? I don’t know. I forget.

But I’m also the mom who can tell in a single glance when you are upset, and who listens to you when you are sad and angry and when you are happy and excited, even if I do tend to forget your ponies’ names and LeBron’s stats and how to catch ’em all.

I’m the mom who wants to slay all your dragons and breathe fire on anyone who dares to hurt you.

I’m also the mom who too often hurts too much to cook dinner. I’m the mom who lets you eat an unhealthy amount of macaroni and pizza rolls. I’m the mom who has piles of clean laundry on the couch because my arms ache so badly I can’t fold it. I’m the mom who gets overwhelmed too easily. I’m the mom who has to hide when things get to be too much. I’m that mom who cries in the bathroom when I’ve let you down.

I’m the mom who stays awake at night worrying about you. I’m the mom who wishes she could save all your hugs and all your “I love you’s” and get them back out on the days when there are no hugs, just slamming doors.

I’m the mom who loves you SO MUCH. You are the children who save my life every day. I’m the mom who is trying to be the parent you deserve, even when I’m not the one you might want.

 

*EDITED TO ADD: I am completely overwhelmed by the response this post has gotten. I love all you guys so much,  and even though everyone keeps saying that I’ve made them feel less alone, the truth is that YOU GUYS have made me feel less alone. Thank you all SO much for every like, comment, share, and kind thought. I’ve been trying to respond to all the comments, but as I guess y’all know, I’m sick a lot. But I have read every single one of them, and each one brings a smile to my face or a tear to my eye and sometimes both. I just wanted everyone to know how much your love and compassion for each other and your “me too” and your stories have affected me.

Love,

Steph


At Least They’re All Wearing Pants. I Think.

5:30 AM: Wake up.

5:32 AM: Pour coffee. Panic about all the things. Put on running shoes because my feet are bitches.

5:35 AM: Attempt to wake kids up gently. One is already awake because he STAYED UP ALL FUCKING NIGHT. One begs for one more minute. One glares at me out of one eye. Find leopard print dress that daughter wants to wear, carry it around with me.

5:40 AM: Discover that although I spent hundreds (AND I DO MEAN HUNDREDS) of dollars on an array of Nike shorts, WHICH ARE ALL MY KID HAS WORN FOR THE LAST YEAR, he has decided today to wear a too short pair of faded black jeans with paint stains that I bought at a yardsale over a year ago. He also disdains the colorful new socks he begged for and that cost more than most prom dresses and wears instead two-year-old black socks that I’m pretty sure were left here by some random kid.

5:45 AM: Find my other son also wearing old black jeans. What. The. Fuck. NOBODY WANTED NEW JEANS. I WOULD HAVE BOUGHT FUCKING JEANS. Jesus. Whisper “fuck you” to older son because I know it will make me feel better and make him laugh. Say JK! Because he loves it when I do the Teenage Speak like the other day when I said I was totally ratchet and they said I don’t think you know what that means so then I said I was going to go ham. I also don’t know what that means.

5:50 AM: Start making lunches. Drink coffee. Add more and more things to lunches because I don’t want them to be hungry and they won’t eat breakfast. Take things out of lunches because I am going way overboard and lunch boxes won’t close. Wonder what happened to the leopard print dress.

5:55 AM: Look frantically through son’s dresser for black shorts because he JUST CAN’T wear those jeans. Not those jeans, please just not those. Wonder what happened to leopard print dress. Son asks for IPod back because he was in trouble and it was taken away but it is the first day of 7th grade so I say Yes because I am a Nice Mom.

6:00 AM: Cannot find IPod or dress anywhere. Son says IPod is in my purse. That is ridiculous. I tell him I hid it somewhere he would never think to find it. He says it seems like I hid it somewhere where I also would never think to find it. He again claims that he saw me put it in my purse. I do not have time for this. Go look for leopard print dress, beg daughter to get out of bed, plead with husband to Find The Things.

6:05 AM: Accidently forget which child I am talking to and yell, “WAKE UP!” at 6-year-old who then bursts into tears as I frantically stroke her head and apologize because I got confused and thought she was the other kid who I have to scream at to get even a blink. She gets up.

6:07 AM: Daughter gets dressed in backup leopard print shirt and khaki shorts. Accuses me of always buying her clothes that match mine. That is just ridiculous because I would NEVER and I do mean NEVER wear leopard print. Although now that I think about it, my luggage and my blanket are leopard print and also my makeup case…

6:10 AM: Son says he’s ready to go. I tell him to brush his teeth and put on deodorant. Tooth brushing takes a long time because toothpaste cannot be found, he doesn’t know that two weeks ago I replaced the head on his spin brush, the bathroom smells. Has he not brushed his fucking teeth in two weeks? I can’t think about this now. Again with the IPod in my purse. Whatever.

6:15 AM: Daughter dances around and I tell her to go pee. She says thanks for reminding her! Jesus. I tell her to brush her teeth while she’s in there. Son AGAIN with the IPod. “We took it to BestBuy, remember? And I asked for it back but you said no and you put it in your purse?” I remember that we took it to BestBuy and I put it in my purse. Yes! Pull IPod out of my purse triumphantly and give it to him.

6:32 AM: Son asks what time are they leaving and I say TWO MINUTES AGO OH MY GOD. Other son gently says some shit about that being a little early, don’t I think? NO BECAUSE THERE MIGHT BE TRAFFIC. My kids will not be late on the first day.

6:35 AM: Ask son if he brushed his teeth and put on deodorant. He says he brushed his teeth but did not need deodorant because he was wearing cologne. Husband explains that deodorant is Every Day and cologne is only if you want. I say ALWAYS WEAR DEODORANT OH MY GOD.

6:37 AM: Daughter wants sparkly rainbow hair bow that matches leopard print Not At All. Ends up wearing sparkly headband that matches leopard print Not At All.

6:40 AM: Everyone starts to leave and husband says, “At least she didn’t make you guys line up for pictures” so I say OH MY GOD GUYS and get out my phone. I try to take a picture and say, “Why is it all black? My phone is broken. Shit! Oh wait, the case is on. HOLD ON WHERE ARE YOU GOING I HAVE TO TAKE A….they are gone. I chase them to the car and take photos maniacally. I hug them all tightly and tell them to have a good day.

6:45 AM: Back in quiet house. Pour more coffee. See leopard print dress in kitchen.

7:15 AM: Husband calls to tell me that they can probably leave a little later tomorrow because they are already there and the doors don’t even open until 7:30. I say that I thought there might be traffic. He says, “Me too” just to make me feel better.


The Tooth Fairy and Santa are Two Different Burglars

My 6-year-old has approximately 15 loose teeth that she refuses to pull out. She’s my third child, so…whatever. I have more important things to worry about, like whether I should use markers or colored pencils when I’m creating masterpieces in the coloring book I stole from her.

Perhaps I should’ve paid more attention to the tiny fucker. (The tooth, not my kid.)

It was a simple trip to get ice cream. Thing 3 took two bites and declared that it was “too hard” and “was making her tooth fall out.” ICE CREAM? Ice cream is too hard? Seriously?

So I had to eat not only my own ice cream, but hers as well. Because I’m not about wasting money.

 

This is how it all started.

This is how it all started.

After that, we went to the store and like every other damn time we’re in public, she started regaling strangers with our life story. As usual, I held my breath and prayed that she wouldn’t burst into song, since she apparently thinks her life is a Disney film and my boobs are a good subject to sing about.

She started talking about her tooth so I said, “You should just pull it out so Santa Claus will come tonight.” I recovered gracefully, as always, and shouted, “NO! SHIT! I MEAN THE TOOTH FAIRY! The tooth fairy will come. Not Santa.”

Jesus. The little hustler took advantage of my confusion and added a chocolate bar to our cart.

I organized my bags just so, unaware that my cart and my sweaty butt crack were blocking an entire parking space.

I was ready to get the fuck home.

The candy bar was a gooey, melted mess by this time. Because I am a genius, I handed it to her, telling her that if she HAD to have chocolate, she’d just have to lick the wrapper. I know. I know, okay?

I’d just pulled out into traffic when I heard, “My toof!” I glanced back and decided that I wasn’t cut out to be a mom.

The tiny maniac, grinning and covered in blood, chocolate, and tears, proudly handed me her tooth. I put it in my purse, handed her napkins to bite down on, and took the liquefied chocolate from her gross little hands. Thanks to my unparalleled grocery placement skills, I knew right where the wipes were, so we were able to clean ourselves up a little.

I breathed a sigh of relief. We survived all that, while I was navigating through heavy traffic, and I handled it like a pro. Don’t tell me I’m not mother of the fucking year. Ha!

The mental high fives came to a screeching halt when we came up to an intersection with a flashing yellow arrow. We were in the middle of a left turn when flashing turned to not flashing and cars started coming at us from every direction.

What. The. Fuck. WHAT’S WITH THE YELLOW ANYWAY? In my day, yellow meant slow down. This was bullshit. Just then, my daughter stood up, leaned towards the rearview mirror, and said, “I’m going to look at myself. I can do that because you never buckled me in.” ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?

With complete control over myself and the situation, I yelled, “FUCK!” Then, “Sit down. Oh my god. Sit down.” We made it out of that godforsaken intersection and I pulled over.

Seatbelts on, I was pulling carefully back onto the road when my husband called. I thought I would tell him what we had just been through, and he would laugh and not be appalled that I even had a driver’s license.

I should’ve known better.

Just as I answered the phone, the forgotten bloody chocolate disaster slid off the dash and into my lap. “SONOFA…Here. Talk to your daughter.”

Somehow we made it home in one piece, WITH the tooth, and I’m never leaving this house again.

Can you explain this yellow flashing light bullshit? What’s the grossest mess you’ve had to deal with while driving? Can my kids come stay with you for the summer?

 


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