Tis’ the Season to Eat Sh*t on the Stairs

What is it about the holidays that seems to accentuate the possibility for bodily injury and harm?  Are we more merry, and therefore less inclined to be wary of potential hazards?  Is it the alcohol?  The parties?  Are we overly distracted by all that needs to be accomplished?  Or is it simply more notable because when you become injured over the holidays it affects the entire season with regard to how you enjoy it?

Two weeks ago I was attending a holiday party at a friend’s house and as I was walking through a gated entryway into a courtyard the entire world tipped itself over and I found myself crashing down onto both of my knees and then face down on the sidewalk.  What the hell just happened?  I sat up, but couldn’t get up.  The pain in my knees and shins was instantaneous,  yet after a few moments I knew nothing was broken.  After a quick assessment of how and why I fell, Dan hoisted me up and I hobbled to the front door.  It turns out there was a very tiny step, about three inches deep right where you entered the courtyard from the gate.  Apparently I missed that step.  My cousin visiting from Michigan was with us and at one point she said, “I’m not gonna lie to you, that wasn’t even a little bit graceful.”

After walking into the party and greeting the hosts, I asked if they had a security camera on their front walkway.  They said they didn’t, but they were curious as to why I would ask.  So I said, “Well, I just ate shit on your front step and I wanted to be sure no one was going to watch that on instant replay or put it on You-tube.”

About thirty minutes later I could feel my heartbeat in my knees.  They were throbbing terribly and stinging like crazy.  I excused myself to the restroom and discovered that I had skinned both knees pretty badly.  I was bleeding under my pants and the skin was already swelling and turning purple and blue with bruises.  I had to mostly sit during the gathering because standing was so painful, and I wasn’t about to draw more attention to myself by asking my hosts for a bag of frozen peas to help with the swelling.  Good times.

After we got home, I grabbed four Advil and two large therapy ice packs from my freezer and got comfortable on the couch.  Dan and my cousin weren’t done having fun yet, so they walked to a local bar to have a few more drinks.  About an hour later I got a text from Dan saying, “I ate shit on a curb in solidarity.  I’m ok.”  It turns out he missed the curb when he was walking home and did a full body yard-sale into the street.  His knees were also skinned and bruised.   We make quite the pair, don’t we?

It’s been two weeks since I fell and the bruising is almost gone.  The skin has healed, mostly, but I still have tenderness in my knees.  The other day I forgot about the injury and tried to kneel down on the wood floor to light the fireplace.  That was a mistake.  I ended up flopping over like I was having a seizure to take the pressure off the injury.  It scared the hell out of my son.

And yesterday, my neighbor texted me that she was at urgent care.  While walking down her stairs she missed a step and took a tumble.  Thankfully, her ankle wasn’t broken but they sent her home in an air cast.  My mother-in-law also recently fell and she did break her knee cap.  Just cracked her patella right in two.  She now has metal screws holding her knee cap together.

So seriously, I think I’m going to start a club.  I need help thinking of a name though, and more members.  A club has to have more than four members.  So if you’ve ever eaten shit on the stairs, we want to hear your story!

Happy Holidays!  🙂

Life is Good.

Hello, world!

The summer has flown by, as I knew it would, and as I predicted, I only got about three posts up all summer.  Figures.

But life continues to be busy.  Since I got home from my grandparent’s house at the end of July, I hosted my college roommate and her family for a few days, was sick for two weeks with a nasty virus that closely resembled strep throat, threw a birthday party for my son and twenty of his closest six-year old friends, and got both of my kids back to school.  So yeah, life and children continue to dominate my time and attention.   Blogging has been on the back burner for a long time, and I’m hoping now that I have both of my kids in school full-time that I’ll have more time and attention for both myself and all of you.

cold germsBeing sick for two weeks wasn’t fun.  I went to the doctor about five days into it and she ran all the typical tests to rule out bacterial infections.  It felt like my head was going to explode, and every time I swallowed it felt like my eardrums were bursting and I was trying to swallow crushed glass.  Fever, fatigue, and all the glamorous parts of feeling like total shit.  My husband had to be out-of-town for work for several days, so taking care of the house, kids, and all the pets when all you want to do is lay down and die was no picnic.  Unfortunately, the doc couldn’t give me any drugs because it was a viral infection, and it took a solid two weeks before I felt human again.  To add insult to injury, going to the doctor in the first place is always such a mind-fuck.  I already felt like shit, and have you ever noticed that going to the doctor makes you fat?  Seriously.  I walk in and immediately feel like I’ve gained ten pounds.  Then the nurse puts you on the scale and you realize that in the two hours since you got dressed and hauled your sick-ass to the clinic, you really must have gained ten pounds because their ancient scale, that must be counter-balanced with massive invisible boulders, says so.  Why don’t doctors use modern digital scales that will weigh me the same as when I’m at home?  And now that I feel like a sick, ginormous, fat cow, I have to sit, forever, in the little room and wait.  imageAnd there’s a mirror in there that is now confirming what the scale said.  Somehow my face looks heavier.  My ass seems to be climbing up my back and my muffin top is more muffin-y.  And now I want to cry because my throat hurts, my ears hurt, I can’t get any meds, and just walking in the door made me feel like Martha Dump Truck.

Damn, I’m glad that’s over.

My son’s birthday party was fun, and humiliating.  But I found my self-respect at the top of a bounce house, so that was an unexpected bonus.  We had the party at Pump It Up.  If you’re unfamiliar with the Pump It Up franchise, it’s basically a party venue with giant inflatables.  Each room is a massive, two-story room with multiple indoor inflatables, like bounce houses, obstacle courses, rock climbing walls, and things like that.  We had the Glow Party, which is like a super cool rave for kids with music and glow in the dark everything.  I had promised my daughter that I would do some of the inflatables with her because as the big sister, she was the oldest kid at the party and didn’t really want to hang with the six-year olds.  Thank God it was dark in there.  I was a little dressed up for the party and my nice jeans were somewhat confining.  Also, you have to wear socks in these things, and I quickly realized that with

This looks a lot like the structure I was attempting to climb

This looks similar to the structure I was attempting to climb. The picture doesn’t do the height justice, though.

socks on it’s hard to get any grip on the structure with your feet.  So,  I was attempting to climb this two-story monstrosity that was part rock climbing wall and part slide in tight jeans and slippery socks.  You see where I’m going with this?  You had to put your feet on these small squares and then use alternating tether straps for your hands to climb up.  Well, the tiny-made-for-five-year-old-feet squares would collapse under you if you didn’t move fast enough.  Half-way up there was this ledge you had to get over, and then another ledge all the way at the top.  I fell trying to get over the first ledge.  Kids were flying past me and laughing as I flailed and dangled by the tether straps.  Did I mention it was also pretty steep?  And also that I’m not a ten-year old?  Anyway, I dug deep and hauled myself to the top, and as I was struggling to get over the second ledge, and considering saying fuck it and just letting go, my son’s friend from his class was sitting at the top of the ledge, and she was watching me as I hung on the tethers.  She’s an adorable little girl and she says, “Keep going Mrs. B!  You can do it!”  Sweet Jesus.  How do I fail in front of her now?  I couldn’t, and it was ugly, and I’m glad it was dark in that room, but I managed to get my fat ass over that ledge and to the top.  I was sweating and tired, and when I went down the slide it was so steep and fast it actually launched me out of the shoot and I landed in a heap in front of several parents watching from below.  There was no way to play it cool, so I laid there like a lump, catching my breath.  Thankfully, several parents said how impressed they were that I even attempted to get to the top, so at least I got some street cred out of it.  Or they were just trying to make me feel better.  Either way, only one other parent attempted the same structure and made it to the top, so that makes me one of the cool moms.

My kids went back to school on August 31st, so I had three days last week of blissful alone time.  I’ve never had that, and I savored it.  I read several of your blogs, did some housework, ran errands without children, and met friends for lunch.  It was heaven.  I’m really looking forward to this school year.  And for the first time since my oldest daughter started school eight years ago, I didn’t cry at drop off on the first day.  I fucking celebrated and went out for sushi!

Life is good, people.  Life is Good!!!!!!

Baseball and Itchy Butts

23777071_sMy five-year old son, Bryce, just finished his first regular season of Little League Baseball.  It was a fun season and all the boys seemed to learn a lot and have a good time.  They slowly progressed from chaotic dog piling on every ball to learning to work as a team, and for the most part, learn the boundaries of each position to support each other on the field.

During our last game of the season Bryce was placed in the position of pitcher.  He didn’t really have to pitch to the kid at bat, but he maintained that position for his team.  There was a coach positioned several feet in front of him and the coach pitched to the kids since the five-year old division is a combination of live pitch and t-ball.

So imagine this adorable five-year old kid in ‘baseball ready’ position, on the pitcher’s mound, in plain sight of everyone.  (I was watching the game from the dugout, helping another mom to manage the boys and organize them during each inning transition.)  I’m watching Bryce, shouting encouragement to him and the rest of the team, and then I see him use his ungloved hand to go in for a deep and prolonged wedgie grab.  His hand was on the outside of his pants but he was working the angles, maneuvering  his hips to get a good handful of whatever he was looking for.

The other mom starts cracking up, and I shout to Bryce and give him the what-the-heck-are-you-doing-face.   He looks up at me, smiles and gives me a thumbs up.  And then he goes right back into the ass-grabby position, but this time he takes his glove off and is digging at his butt from both the front and the back.  He’s bent forward, looking between his legs as he attacks himself, and he’s digging for gold like a marathon miner.  He’s in the middle of the field just going to town, completely oblivious to the game continuing around him.  Balls are flying past him and he’s more concerned about whatever is going on in his pants than the rest of the inning.  He ignores my shouts to pay attention to the game.

At the end of the inning the kids all run back to the dugout and I start checking his pants, thinking (hoping) that surely all that ass-grabbing had to do with his sliding shorts either riding up or being bunched wrong under his pants.  So I ask, “Why were you digging at your bottom out there?  Are your sliding shorts riding up?”  And in front of everyone he says, “Nope, I was itching my butt.  I think I sharted and I need to wipe it.”

IMG_1115My kid used the word sharted in front of his team and other parents.  The other mom next to me is thoroughly losing her shit with laughter.  As my face turned red with shame, I looked at her and said, “Please inform the Delegation of Perfect Parents that I will have to forfeit my membership and my Parent of the Year award…again.”

Locker Room Ladies

So I went to the gym today, and while I was unloading my stuff into a locker I got sucked into the most bizarre conversation with two elderly women.  I’m guessing they were in their 70’s?????

naked towel ladyI’ve talked before about the hilarity of the old ladies in the gym locker room.  They just stand around naked and exchange recipes, acting like group nudity in the locker room is the new sewing circle.  And don’t even get me started on their bizarre habits with the hair dryers.  The management at the gym has now put up signs asking that the hair dryers only be used for the hair on your head.  I’ll just let that sink in for a second….

Anyway, this older woman was having a conversation with another woman about thong underwear.  She was explaining to her friend how she prefers to wear thongs.  The other woman was looking at her like she was crazy and basically said, “At our age, why in the hell would want to wear a thong?  Aren’t they uncomfortable?”  And the other woman is going on and on about how you just get used to the discomfort of it.  Then she takes her thong underwear out of her gym bag and starts waving it around and saying, “Look how small they are!”  And they were small.  They had a small triangle of fabric and basically three strings attached to it.  So her friend says, “Why do you even bother to wear underwear then?”  And the other woman looks at me and says, “Well, I bet you wear thong underwear?”

big eyesWTH?  How did I get sucked into this discussion?

So I replied, “Actually, I don’t.  I’ve never been comfortable with the general construction of thong underwear, and I don’t care for how they feel.  I prefer regular underwear.”  And the one woman chimes in, “Me too!  I’ll take panty lines any day rather than have a string up my ass!”

(I’m laughing at the absurdity of having this conversation with two seventy + year old ladies.)

At this point, another woman is listening to the conversation as well.  The woman who wears the thong continues to chat about her preference of intimate apparel while trying to wrench her sports bra over her head.  And then she got stuck.  She’s flailing around, her boobies are bouncing back and forth and she’s basically trapped in her sports bra with her arms stuck over her head.  So the other lady asks her if she needs help, and the two of them have to wrestle this woman out of her bra.

laughing emojiI swear to God, I can’t make this shit up.

As I’m leaving the locker room, I said to the fourth woman who is laughing quietly in front of her locker, “You know it’s a bad day when you get trapped in your underwear at the gym and you need to call for an assist.”

Physical Therapy is Hard

10325771_10152178862025945_3803660742779114138_n[1]If you’ve ever done physical therapy, this won’t come as a surprise to you.

I’ve been in PT for about four weeks now trying to address the issues with my knees.  It’s going well, but it’s painful.  I’m working to strengthen my hips, legs and knees in order to help my knees maintain their alignment and also alleviate the pain associated with the loss of cushioning and cartilage.

My first active session with my therapist was both embarrassing and torturous.

First, she put me through a series of hip and leg exercises that were expected and not all that different from working out with my trainer.  It felt like a workout, but that was good.  Afterwards, she “stretched me out.”  This is where it gets embarrassing.

Like this, except laying on or your back with a therapist looming over you.

Like this, except laying on your back with a therapist looming over you.

She had me lay diagonally across a therapy table, and positioned my legs so that one foot was braced on her shoulder, and the other was bent as far back as possible under the table.  She leaned into me so that my knee was almost touching my shoulder, and she used her body to stretch my other leg back under the table, stretching my quad and hip flexor.  Outside the context of a PT room, this would have looked like some serious girl on girl action.  I was so embarrassed by the positioning, and we were not alone in the room, I had to stare at the ceiling.  I could not look her in the face while we were in this ridiculous position.

Then, with my leg jacked up to my shoulder, she digs her forearm into the top of my other thigh and says, “Your hips are so tight.  Your quads and hamstrings are strong, but your hips are really tight and weak.”

Gasping through the pain of her shredding my muscle with her tiny arms of steel, I said, “No way!  My hips aren’t weak!  My hips are bangin’!”

Just kidding.  I didn’t say that, and my hips aren’t bangin’.  Well, at least not in that way.  My hips are awesome in a good-Midwestern-stock-breeding-hips sort of way.  I actually had a doctor tell me once that I was “good Midwestern stock.”  I probably should have been offended by that at the time.

Anyway, this freaky, painful stretching escapade lasted for several minutes and then she moved me into the same position with the other leg.  At one point I had to put my arm over my face and turn away because I refused to allow anyone in that room to see how much pain I was in.  I kept chanting to myself quietly, “Don’t cry in public, don’t cry in public.   Only candy-ass, wussie girls cry in public!”  The next morning as I was getting dressed, I noticed multiple bruises all over the tops of both my thighs.

I don't know this guy.  It's a stock photo, but an accurate depiction of pervy guy.

I don’t know this guy. It’s a stock photo, but an accurate depiction of pervy guy.

This physical torture has continued for four long weeks.  The stretching has gotten better and less painful, although there is one dude also receiving therapy who seems to enjoy watching my stretching sessions with more enthusiasm than I’m comfortable with. I’m pretty certain he’s a pervert and probably getting off on the visual.  I secretly hope the therapist gives him an extra dig with her elbow when she’s manipulating his muscles.

I wish I could say that I’ve noticed a significant difference between the knee shots and therapy, but so far, it’s mostly the same.  Pain, grinding, and more pain.  My therapist admitted to me that some people don’t experience any pain relief from the shots.  That’s disheartening considering that I only need one more shot to complete the course of my treatment.

So yeah, physical therapy is not for sissies.

The Talk

You know the one I’m referring to, right?

Of course, I’m talking about The Sex Talk.  I should clarify and say that I didn’t intend to have the sex talk yet, but when you’re looking for shortcuts in dealing with major transitional issues in your child’s life, well, shit happens.

teenagersMy daughter is eleven years old now, and in middle school.  I remember middle school well.  It’s an excruciating time period rife with insecurity, bad skin, growth spurts, and hormonal rebellion.  And with the hormones come the puberty, and with the puberty comes the realization that boys aren’t gross (all the time).  Sometimes, they’re cute.  And funny.  And did I mention cute?

Bryn started coming home from school with stories about eighth graders holding hands or kissing in the hallways.  She says it’s gross, but I can tell she has that beginning fascination with watching it unfold, and trying to figure out how a seemingly normal girl/classmate would want to kiss a boy in the hallway at school.  She wants to understand it.  And I want her to understand it.  As much as I hate it,  I don’t want her to be ignorant about what’s happening around her.  In a world where kids are growing up too fast and have too much access to adult content, I don’t want her to be uninformed about her body or how it’s changing.  I want her to understand why eighth graders believe they’re mature enough to be “in love,” and why they think it’s a grand idea to shove their tongues down each other’s throats in the middle of a junior high hallway with an audience.   I want her to be as informed as possible so that as she gets older she can make informed decisions for herself without relying on misguided and/or incorrect information from her friends.  Plus, if she’s ignorant about things she’s more apt to succumb to peer pressure,  and we all know peer pressure is an asshole!

I just wasn’t ready to approach all of that at once.  I thought I would spread it out a little.

whats happening to me bookTo help guide me in this new world of raising a pre-teenage girl, I did the only thing that made sense.  I bought a book.  Books are awesome.  I was at a book party with several moms from my neighborhood and the book I purchased came highly recommended by the woman selling the books.  I also noticed several other moms purchasing the book so I snatched up my copy, flipped through it and decided the content was appropriate for Bryn’s age and developmental level.  Puberty, periods, and pimples.   Perfect.

My original intention was to sit down with Bryn and for us to read the book together.  But after three weeks of the book lying on my dresser untouched because I didn’t make the time to read it with her, I just gave it to her and said, “Here, read this and let me know if you have any questions.”

Famous last words.

She did read it, and holy hell did she have questions!  I should have read the book first.  Then I could have tagged the pages I wanted her to read and saved the rest for later.  But I didn’t do that.  And I paid the price.

Bryn came downstairs after about an hour of reading and said, “Mom, what does this mean when they say a slippery fluid comes out of the woman’s vagina when she’s going to have sex?  And I’m unclear about this whole erection thing.”

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I grabbed the book and read the page she was referring to.  It was a very detailed explanation of the mechanics of sex.  It was worded appropriately considering the book is an educational tool, however, it was more detail than I had planned to share at this point,  and clearly further explanation on my part was necessary.  I had no choice.  Pandora’s Box had been opened and it was all my fault.  I couldn’t ask her to un-read what she had read.  The knowledge was there and now needed my parental clarification.

wine-parents-mother-drink-family-funny-ecard-e7d[1]I grabbed a glass (read bottle) of wine to fortify myself and we went upstairs to her room to continue the conversation I had never intended to start.  The book covered everything from sex, puberty, periods, hygiene, acne, male genitalia, masturbation, wet dreams for males, attraction to both the opposite sex and same sex genders, as well as nutrition, exercise, and the dangers of drugs and alcohol.  Holy sweet Jesus!

Two hours later she looked at me and said, “And you do this?  You do the sex with daddy?”

big eyesTo hesitate is to show fear.  I couldn’t hesitate.  I looked her in the eyes, fought to keep a straight face and said, “Yes, I do.”  She looked back at me for a long moment, and then she calmly said, “That’s just gross.”

She then went on to explain that I didn’t need to worry about her having sex because she was not interested in doing that, ever.  I asked if she’d be willing to sign a contract in blood every year until she graduated from high school.  She was confused by my request, so I let that one drop.

At the end of the day I was glad we talked about it.  But her new found knowledge has opened up new and not always welcome conversations.  The other night we were watching TV and there was a commercial on for erectile dysfunction medication.  Now that she knows the vocabulary, I can’t take anything for granted.  She said, “What did the commercial mean when they said ‘Be sure your heart is healthy enough for sex.'”  So I told her, “You know how exercise increases your heart rate?  Well, sex is like exercise, and the old guys can’t always handle it if they have a bad heart.”  😉

laughing emojiPS–I’ll leave you with my favorite passage from her book.  This was a girl’s book, by the way, so I’m not entirely sure why this information was necessary considering they have a separate book available for boys.  I did find it rather hilarious though.

“Boys often have erections at inconvenient moments and it can be especially awkward if the erection won’t go down.  While a boy is asleep, he may have what’s called a wet dream–an erection and then an orgasm….This is only his body getting used to its new way of working, but it can be embarrassing to stain the sheets.”  —What’s Happening to Me?

 

Wanda Says…Random Thoughts, Fancy Cars, Play-Doh and TMI.

cleaning ladyMy house is a bit of a mess and I keep waiting for someone else in this family to take some initiative and clean it.  Then I remind myself that everyone else is waiting for me to do it because as a stay home mom, that’s my job.  I’m looking at the floors and thinking I need a raise.  Or a glass of wine while I contemplate when I may feel like getting around to some housework.

I’m tired all the time.  I thought once I started working out a lot that I would have all this boundless energy.  All I have is sore muscles, some new muscles,  and constant cravings for caffeine and meat.

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Every Tuesday and Thursday when I go to the gym, there’s a black, Rolls Royce Wraith in the parking lot.  Seriously.  A freaking Rolls Royce!  Every week I see this car and I think…Really?  Because that’s your casual car?

Would you drive this to the gym?

Bryce has been begging me all day to play with his play-doh.  I hate play-doh.  It took forever to clean up the mess he made yesterday with his play-doh, and I just want it to disappear.  He likes to take several different colors, squish them all together and then shape it into a puddle.  Then he brings it to me and says, “Here’s another pool of vomit, mommy!”  He makes these “pools of vomit” and then expects me to save it and display it on the fireplace mantel.  He gets upset when I try to secretly throw them away.  He notices when they disappear from the mantel.  He doesn’t believe me anymore when I tell him I’m saving them in a special, secret location.  Did I mention that I hate play-doh?

My husband had to fly to Oakland today for a meeting with one of his clients.  He’s in the e-commerce business and he works with a variety of online retailers.   This particular client happens to be a company that makes products exclusively for adults.  *Ahem*  To be more specific, they sell sex toys.  Apparently, during the meeting, the company gave out goodie bags to all the executives.  He texted me a picture of the bag and said, “I can’t wait to go through TSA at the airport.”  He won’t tell me what’s in the bag.  He says it’s a surprise.  I don’t actually care about what’s in the gift bag, but I would give almost anything to watch him go through airport security with that bag.  It was a day trip so he didn’t take luggage with him.  It should make him feel better that everyone from his company got a gift bag, so they all have to go through airport security together, with sex toys in their possession.  (I’m crying laughing just thinking about it!)

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Because I won’t put up a picture of a sex toy, its funny, and topically, it’s somewhat relevant.

Have a great weekend!  😉