Thursday, August 27, 2009

Well, we're movin' on u-u-up!

Today I woke up to Ashton having a conniption because he thought we had overslept because the sun had risen and I had not dragged his butt out of bed. I giggled and tried to curl him into my side and explained that it was my day off.

He was unconvinced, sure he was missing school, and trudged off to get dressed and find food.

Ah, I am such an inspiration of organization to my kids. By being a walking disaster, I am driving them to organize their own lives and become independent. Truly, it was the master plan all along.

I got out of bed, looked at the clock, and decided we had time to move some stuff to the new place. Deciding I was in much better health today (as I felt I could do, haha) and realizing I had access to strong young backs, I put the kids to moving once they were ready for school.

I can't say as this was met with unenthusiasm. They are excited about the new place. Either that or (grr) they are worried about me. And they know I am a bullheaded Irish/Italian who will and has just done it herself, so it would be done today because I hath ordered it so...

Once the car was loaded, I realized we were no longer early for school.

Actually we were tardy.

I don't know why, but this school system does that to me. Get me to Summit and we had one absent for 2 of the kids and 2 tardies the whole year. Put me in Ashtabula county schools and we max out our limit every time. I think it is that the Apathy Bug bites my ass in Bula. Apathy Bug flies in and says that if the school is disorganized and argumentative, well, I can be back.

If the school is cooperative and tries to meet my kids needs, well, I feel mean and stupid not following their rules.

Apathy Bug had a lunch lady bugging Ashton so far this year. Apathy Bug had someone call me and ask if David, who has food allergies, can sit next to someone eating beef. Airborne beef? I was appalled. I explained that food allergies were from ingesting. I explained that it is like peanut allergies. Do they separate those kids from kids eating peanut butter? Apathy Bug has bit me twice already and my bum is a bit sore over it.

Apathy, Apathy, that's our cry... a-p-a-t-h... ah, the hell with it.

So the kids were late going to school, which made Ash have more of a conniption. Which, bad mommy award, I found funny.

I then went back to look at our new home and fully invade it with Jordan in tow.

Tony had remodeled it. Justice has a room. It has an antique dresser that folds out into a desk and this pretty little chair and a lovely desk. I put her clothes in it and Jordan made the bed and I need tacks for her Twilight poster. She has her own room again.

The boys are bunking up together. Another lovely old dresser. David has a full and Ashababy has a twin. I giggled. They have a room again.

I have a room. I have a desk to write at. I have a room.

He made a little dining room by the furnace and He arranged the living room around the huge projection TV and I have a breakfast bar. I was thrilled.

We are on our own again. No roommates. Just us. I sighed. Our space. Our home.

Told you I felt better today.

Now off and going to argue with the school and US gov. Good times.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Lots of Blood and Gore (Graphic-Adult only)

I awoke feeling sticky and a bit moist when I heard the alarm go off at 4:30 this morning. Blearily I silenced it and fumbled for the lights. I glanced back at the bed and saw the blood and tried to decide where it had come from.

Honestly, I never guessed me.

I went to the bathroom, deciding to deal with it in a minute, having more urgent morning matters to deal with and found out where the blood had come from completely by coincidence.

Huh. Well that was odd. I cleaned the sheets and the mattress cover which had been saturated as well (still not really thinking too deeply what that amount of blood could mean) and woke up the kids for school.

We all know, show must go on, and this is what pads are for. Not that I have ever had anything remotely of that nature happen. Actually nightly nothing ever comes out. I lay down, stuff stops. That's how I flow. But, hey, I am old now. Maybe stuff changed. Whatever. School to be gotten to, work to be done.

I dropped off the kids and went to work, still determined that it was going to be a normal day.

The pad was full and there was way more still coming.

I cleaned up again and it had only been an hour.

Again, whatever, clocked in and a little voice in the back of my head popped in with a service announcement. I have little voices that do that. It reminded me of a fact learned at some random point. The average menstruation is something like a few tablespoons of blood. This had to have been more than that. Like this had to have been cups by now.

And it was bright red like I was bleeding. But what could I be bleeding from? I was not injured. I had not had... ahem, interaction, so I knew it was neither pregnancy nor failed pregnancy.

What was bleeding and why so much?

I again decided I could ignore it. It was probably just something I ate, didn't eat, hormones, stress, something dumb. Nothing to fear.

By 8:30, I had filled another pad and I passed a clot the size of a baseball.

This, even I could not ignore. This was something wrong. Something was wrong and I could not explain it so I was going to have to do what I hate most of all...

Get it looked at.

I HATE HOSPITALS. I ALSO AM NOT FOND OF DOCTORS. I respect their position. I have an enormous crush on House. I am, however, terrified to the 9Th of medical professionals the way some people are of clowns and spiders.

There is actually a story behind this and it is longer than this blog was initially intended to be, but what the hey, I am feeling chatty and am stuck with my feet propped up anyway and you are still reading, so here is the root of my medi-phobia.

My best friends growing up were members of our church. Their names rhymed and were Wayne and Kane. Yup, boys, go figure. We won't go into Kane as he has no bearing on my phobia. Wayne was awesome. He had curly blond hair that was long, as was cool in the eighties and now, and freckles. His eyes were always a laughing blue. He was clever and fun and loved Lego's and Star Trek.

Wayne lived in Mentor and I lived in Painesville and we never would have met had we not gone to the same church. His parents were awesome. Wayne Sr. taught me lots that I, as a growing techie, wanted to know. Of course this was back in the day when my Commadore 128 was cutting edge as it ran both the 64 and 128 (only old folks would even get that, but then again, I still own Wayne Jr's Atari... not game system, computer. Talk about a dinosaur.) He also introduced me to the wonders of Carl Sagan's Cosmos. Debs was everything I used to wish my mom was. Stay at home mom, which my mom wasn't and I can't afford to be and she was fun and liked to laugh and hang out and was cool.

He was my first "real" boyfriend. I wrote his name in hearts in my books. He took me on my first date. I won't go into the traumatic scene with my mom before (aren't there always at least one) but I will say I was teary eyed when my makeup was finally on. We were going on a Valentine's Day trip with the teen group (he was 15, I was 14, Gods we were young!) to Brown Derby. I walked into our dining room and he had gotten me a four foot tall Ziggy card. He had also gotten me a heart shaped box of chocolates, a red heart shaped pair of earrings, a dozen red roses, and a golden love knot ring with a real diamond in it (it was tiny, diamond dust really, but it was my first 'real' piece of jewelry as well).

I looked at it all and looked at him and those laughing blue eyes. Those same blue eyes had laughed at me from up in a crab apple tree as he had pulled me up and taught me how to climb a tree. Those same blue eyes had laughed at me as he had reached out and pulled me onto a merry go round the first time we had met. Those same blue eyes had laughed at me more recently when he had pulled me close in a corn field when we were playing hide and seek and I had thought he was going to kiss me. He had not.

Now they laughed down at me and he had said, "I wanted to give you a date you would never forget. Figured this would be hard to top." I reached out and his eyes laughed down at me and his strong fingers closed around mine. I remember thinking they always would. And that it was good.

I am thirty-two in a few weeks. He still hasn't been topped. It was the best first date. He was the best first date.

A few weeks later, the back pain he had been having, the pain he had gotten a new bed for because no one knew why a fifteen year old boy with a history of only asthma who never had been one to complain and now said his back hurt all the time... well, they figured out what was causing it.

Cancer. His kidney was the size of a cantaloupe and it was all cancer. Vigorous, aggressive, life altering cancer.

I remember he didn't seem scared. His faith, always more indomitable than mine, did not waiver. I was always, still am, one to curse God and shake my fist. He just said, it would be okay and gave me a hug.

There was talk of hope, and prayer and how strong he was being.

Everyone continued to watch me do all the wonderful things I did. I was still golden and healthy and terribly smart, or so everyone said. And I hated it. I hated being me because I watched as his curls, curls I could wrap around my finger around, when we were in the car and he rested his head in my lap, and coil them tight and then watch them bounce back into place, fell out. They fell out and I stayed healthy. We listened to Free Fallin' by Tom Petty and I continued to play with those last few strands of curls as he got more tired and more sick. Finally, there were no curls.

I got a pin that said, 'bald guys are sexy,' which he showed proudly to his nurses. The nurses all knew who I was. How could they not? He had my picture, pictures of us, pictures of me modeling, pictures of me healthy while he was sick and dying, plastered all over his wall.

It made me hurt. I smelled his skin and it smelled of medicine and not of Wayne. I saw his backpack, the one that had liquid food in it because he was too sick to eat, and I hated eating because why should I be able to eat when he couldn't? Nobody noticed I lost weight that year. They put a tube in his chest for the medicine, that was supposed to make him better, but that just made him so frail and thin. They taught me to clean it out. I smiled and joked with him but inside I was screaming.

I hated the doctors. I hated the hospital. I hated it all. They kept saying it was getting better and they lied to me. They smiled and they talked of hope and I smiled because he smiled and I watched him get worse. I kissed his head and I would leave and I would hope that I wouldn't make it to see him because it hurt to see him. But always when I did, those blue eyes laughed at me. And his hand, his hand that was always so much stronger and bigger than mine, would reach for me. And when it did, maybe things weren't so bad. Because, really, as long as he reached for me, it was ok.

And I would curse God because Wayne was good and kind and had faith and could make good things happen and I was really good at messing things up. I was good at not having faith. I was good at being bad. What kind of world was God making it if he would take someone out of it like Wayne who could do so much good if given time, and leave someone like me, instead?

I was fifteen when he gave me Goofy for my birthday. Goofy was a stray cat, meaner than piss. He knew we would like each other. (We did and I kept her, then one of her kittens until last year when he died of old age.) We had a date scheduled. Wayne was now sixteen, and had gotten his license. We were supposed to go on our one year anniversary date for Valentine's Day. He had gotten tests back that said he was in remission.

I woke the week of Valentine's Day at 1:15 in the morning. I stared at the clock. I remember I could have sworn I heard Wayne say my name. I went to school and wrote my friend Trish a note and told her all about it. She still has the note. She wrote back that I should call him and make sure he was ok.

I came home and was going to call Wayne and tell him. I asked my Dad to use the phone to call him. It was long distance and remember, fifteen. He said no and that my mother would talk to me about it when she got home.

Like a typical kid though, I didn't let it go. I pestered and wheedled until he said, "He died, ok! He died so you can't call him. It happened last night."

I looked at him and I remember I felt nothing. I remember I told him that he was going to get in trouble for lying to me.

I called my mom at work. She said, yes, he was gone.

I still did not believe it.

I called Debs and she said that the tests were wrong, switched or something. He was worse. Basically, the cancer had taken him over. He had come home to die. No one had told me. No one. He had sat in a chair and fallen asleep and just stopped breathing. Peacefully.

At one-fifteen.

When she said one-fifteen finally, I don't know why, I believed her.

I still did not cry.

Through all the funeral preparations, of which Wayne and Debs made me a part of, through the beginning of the calling hours in which I, like a raving bitch ordered they take the lipstick off him as it was wrong, I did not cry.

Until my mom showed up. She asked me if I had touched him. I rolled my eyes at her. I was, after all, a teen. "No."

She took me back to his coffin. I looked at him again. His hair, if memory serves, was dandelion fluff. Not grown in. Not full bald. His freckles were even on his head. His face was well remembered and he looked asleep. His eyes did not laugh up at me and he did not smell like medicine. That, at least, was good. I touched his face. I adjusted his jacket. I talked to him.

I don't remember what I said. Something stupid, I am sure. "Hi, me again."

Automatically, I reached, since I was touching him now and talking to him, to twine my fingers with his.

And for the first time since we had met those fingers did not catch mine. He had always closed his fingers around mine. He had always held me back. Wayne was the one unconditional in my life. My mom was not. No one else unconditionally just caught me, no matter if they should have been mad or not and just held on. Wayne's fingers always wrapped around mine. My fingers tightened in his and reality crashed. I was alone. He was gone. They had really all lied. There was no hope, he was gone forever and I was really alone.

And holding his hand desperately I broke on the inside. I cried, finally. I am not entirely sure I ever entirely fixed that broken piece to this day.

And I learned that doctors don't always
a:know for sure what they are talking about. Sometimes they guess based on the information and they are just plain wrong.

b:tell the truth. Sometimes, when talking to the dying, the young, the love of the young, or the weak, they lie, sugar coat or otherwise give you false hope. AKA LIE. the information correctly. He was never in remission. There really was a test that came back and said he was. The test was someone else's and it got swapped. Based on that I was able to delude myself further into denial.

Based on all of the above experiences, I do not terribly trust diagnosis.

Further, I have never been able to convince myself entirely that I was not meant, as obviously the greater evil, to expire in his stead. God knows, literally, I offered.

So when I was bleeding profusely and realized I was going to have to hop my happy butt into the hospital or risk bleeding out from the... ahem, nether region, and that I was going to have to do it alone and that it was likely going to require an exam... which I detest as it is humiliating...

I chain smoked and was shaking. Blood loss I can ignore. A looming building thick with nurses and doctors... I was trembling like a leaf in a hurricane.

I went in and advised them as to my condition. They proceeded to poke, prod, test and retest me. The diagnosis?

More tests. 'Something' is very wrong. You are bleeding. There are many clots on your ultrasound. You are not able to work. You cannot work tomorrow. Here are some meds for pain.'

Me-"I'm not in pain. I don't need pain meds. Why am I bleeding like a stuck pig? Why can't I go back to work? Look, can you just make the note cover that I was here so I can go back and so that today is not a complete wash?"

My thoughts- If you people took my blood, looked in my body, used an ultrasound, made me drink a gallon of water, did another ultrasound, and you still are not coming back with anything better than 'something is wrong' I am going to work. And apparently you are all deaf. I am not in pain. I am just bleeding. A lot.

"Let me get the doctor."

So she hustles out and comes back with the doctor. He looks at me. I am fully clothed now, cell in hand, name tag for work back on. I am ready to leave.

"You have clotting and blood loss. You need to go home and relax today and tomorrow at least. I am not releasing you for work. You are not able to work."

I glare at him.

"I sit. At work, I sit."

He cheerfully glares back, "Go home. Relax. Go to a gynecologist. Find out what is causing the bleeding. It may be stress or it may be hormonal, but you may need it taken care of. After the rest and follow up, you can go back to work. I released you to work Friday."

I glare more.

He does not release me.

I cannot work. I am not released. I cannot not (double negative makes a positive, so yes I have to) turn the paper in. If I don't, then it looks like I just bailed work mid-shift for no reason.

I stomp out of the hospital and am hit by dizziness. I glare at the cement and grit my teeth. I light a cigarette. This raises blood ox levels. I figure this will counteract the blood loss. This, my friends, is called Virg-logic.

I call work and cannot get my boss. I bicker with one of my best friends who has my best health interests at heart, dammit.

I am so not happy. I foresee more tests. I loathe tests. Then they are going to make more guesses. Then I will not like the results and they will call for nasty things. Surgery. Medicine.

Things that I have absolutely no faith will fix anything.

I have faith in God. I have faith in many things. Sadly, a long time ago, I lost my faith in medicine when I realized they don't know everything. And they lie.

Monday, August 24, 2009

A Vampire In a Daylight World

The shrill bleeping of the cell phone interrupted the interlude between me and my lover. I jerked alert and blinked at the hallway which was in my immediate range of sight. Nighttime noises, snoring and the dog lifting his head, greeted me. I fumbled to silence the phone. I fell out of the bed, as my coordination had not caught up with the adrenal rush of the alarm and made it to the bathroom relatively unharmed. I glared at the image in the mirror.

I do not look good at four thirty in the morning. I showered and cleaned most of my body. It is funny how when you are half-awake you decide which bits really need cleaned and which bits are unimportant. Or at least which bits you don't give a darned about because if you don't clean them you are pretty sure they won't stink.

I crawled back out of the shower and rubbed vigorously with a towel, crept gingerly into my clothes as my skin was super sensitive as it would rather be tucked into bed and went to jar my children to life.

They awoke and off we went. There was a minor incident with David. For sake of his pride, which is sensitive at ten, we won't go into it. Needless to say, eleven was nearly not seen.

We made it to the sitter where my elder two collapsed and immediately went back to sleep. Ash proceeded to play his Guitar Hero Air Guitar (with Amp) at full blast. The babysitter, clutching her coffee, was defended by me when I explained that no one wants to hear Iron Man at 5am. No one. Please, although you got it for your birthday, do not play it till the sun comes up. Ash, grudgingly, agreed, and I trudged off again to work.

But the scene with Ash had me too late to go the way that would swing me past Starbucks. And when I tried to run through Mickey Dees the line was too darned long.

Coffee-less. Oh, yeah. Ba-a-d choice. And I forgot cash. So credit card and no coffee in hand, I got to the office.

There is a strange, unearthly stillness to an office first thing in the morning. I have never been there that early. The phones had not started going yet. People were talking amongst themselves. They all had coffee. I shuffled to my cubicle and logged on to my station.

I logged onto my phone.

It did not ring.

It rang maybe three times that first hour.

I eventually began stabbing myself with a pen to stay awake. I tried pulling out my hairs one by one. I tried slapping myself but this drew attention so I went back to the stabbing as it was more quiet and efficient.

I wished for a stapler. A nice Swingline. Staples would have kept me awake.

Finally it was time for my break and coffee mug in hand I ran to the new coffee machine that accepted credit.

There was a page of instructions on how to use it. I read them. Swipe card. I obediently swiped. Make selection. I selected. Coffee. Strong beautiful coffee.

I waited. The machine beeped. It turned blue and nothing came out. I growled at it and swiped again.

Made selection.

Beep! It turned blue.

I growled at the machine. I was smarter than a coffee machine. I read further in the directions with my coffee-less, sleep deprived, desperate brain.

Something about a five dollar hold on my credit card... whatever! I don't care! Take five hundred! Give me coffee!

Blah, blah, press complete. Okay, swipe, select, press complete... wait.

Nothing. Growl. Punch machine.

People are beginning to gather and stare.

Read again. Whatever. I don't want to read the damned directions. I can't read anymore. I need coffee to read.

I smack the machine. I open the plastic door by force and stick my mug in and smack the machine again for emphasis. I order it, "Give me coffee!"

I swipe. I make my selection. It closes its door. I wait. Nothing. I smack, swipe, select and kick it and yell, "NOW!"

Apparently this time the machine was afraid or had gotten enough money off my card to send a Colombian family on vacation because sweet dark heaven poured into my mug. Applause broke out.

I chugged half of it and stumbled back to my cubicle.

The rest of the day was a blur really.

But it was fueled by coffee.

Really, really expensive coffee.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Words fail me...

Why is it those who are closest to you hurt you the most?

I have got to have something cheery and funny happen soon because lately my blog has become bummer central and previously I loved the fact it was pretty upbeat and funny (or so I would like to think) but today I had something big and bad enough happen that I want to get it off my chest. And as the blog is my vent space, I am venting.

Today was Ash's 8th birthday which was a big day for him and me. He is the baby and we woke up and I looked at his almost-grown-in two front teeth and again thought that my baby wasn't much of a baby anymore. He grinned up at me and unlike his older, more demanding siblings, all he wanted for his birthday was his family to be there. He, this birthday, did not ask for the usual (mom, can I have a laptop, a zebra, a trip to the moon).

Instead he asked me for his dad to come. He asked if we all could just hang out. He asked if we could do it at a playground so he could play. He wanted a cake that he had picked out and had told Jamie about. He wanted us all to go. That was it. He wasn't being his usual demanding self. He was upbeat and chipper and cuddly.

So I went off and Jamie and a friend pulled off the cake and they showed up. Michelle and I pulled together a few presents last minute even though the budget is so tight right now my eyeballs are being pulled out my ears. Ray came in from Madison because Ash asked him to, even though I am sure he had better things to do with his time and that it was vastly uncomfortable for him. We did it because it was all the kid asked for.

Mom asked, "What? Why would you want me there?"

I don't know why it hurts me so much that she didn't go. I don't know why it bugs me so damn much that when we pulled in and he looked around and he asked me where she was that I had to tell him she wasn't coming. He was cool about it. I don't know why it bugs me other than he is eight and he should not have had to be cool about it.

She should have been there.

And when I asked her why she did not come her answer was that simple, "Why? You did not need me there. Its not like I am his real grandmother."

If not her, who, exactly? She is my blood mother. She gave birth to me. I gave birth to him. He is my son and my life and I cannot comprehend how she can treat her grandchild with any less than the same love than she treats the rest of my kids.

But to say, well, fine, you are being unfair to my child and if you cannot treat my children equally, you cannot be around them, which would be the general solution to the issue in any other case, does not work in this case. Because to do so punishes not only her but my other two kids and my dad. And then I am the bad guy. A double edged sword in so many ways. Or continue to allow my youngest to be treated like... words fail me. A solution in this case has been such gray area for years and I have tried multiple different approaches and obviously nothing is going to work.

So what to do? Today was the straw on the camels back, that I know. I cannot look at that little kid, who I love so much, who is so full of life and has so much to give and watch him hurt for no better reason than an adult is playing petty games and does not care about his feelings. I am his guardian. I am the dragon at the gate. I must breathe the fire both literally and figuratively. I think a lot of parents forget that guardian means just that. We are the guard dogs.

I have to bite in this case.

I just wish that it wasn't my guardian that was making me growl.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Onward and Upward

Trying to plan a move and enroll the kids in a new school and giving myself a deadline of three days is challenging. Trying to find a place to move to in less than a week was challenging. Trying to decide if it was for the best was tooth shattering because my teeth have been gritted together for the past week solid.

But my dad is falling downhill fast. He is not doing well at all. My mom, conversely, is getting crabbier. I have not been sure if this was because of other familial issues that have been going on or because she can see dad the way I can. I am not even sure if she can see dad the way I can. I have the unique perspective of not seeing dad for days on end because of work and then when I do I see little things. He is a bit paler. A bit weaker. His skin a bit frailer. A bit more slow to speak. He runs into things with his chair. A bit more childlike and more easy to anger, to any emotion.

I can't leave now. If I leave now I am leaving them and knowing there is no way I will make it back to town before next summer for any length or duration of time. Between the kids school and my work, it just won't happen. Besides that, I have to move somewhere and childcare for work had to be set up. My roommate, doll that she is, is a teacher. She had to teach so watching the kids was out. So the deadline loomed then crashed down around my ears and I continued to cower, hidden by indecision.

Not helping matters any was finances. My car, not loving the 45 min drive back and forth to work, had a major breakdown. Then I got sick (do you think stress with my medical history is a no-no? Nah!) and missed a week of work I could not afford. I am still wondering if I am going to get paid for it. I am beginning to doubt it.

So there went my apartment budget. So it was easy to continue to sit in panic and throw my hands up and look to the skies and yell at God. I do that a lot. Not that he usually answers. Well, other than to make it rain. Or throw the occasional tree or tornado at me. (Not kidding. He has actually thrown trees and tornados at me. See previous blog for tornado and NEVER going to tell the tree story. SO not G-rated.)

Finally, my roommate saw that, I think, I was far too panicked to do anything to solve my problems so she became proactive (or realized that the solutions I was coming up with were so pathetic as to be completly disregarded) and found one piece of the puzzle.

She found a provider of childcare here. She found MJ. MJ as the kids call her takes the kids on walks to the creek and has taught them to catch crayfish (something previously only taught by Todd as I am afraid of the pinchers), and frogs and fish. She walks them to the library and they cheerfully show me the books they got. She cheerfully feeds them and tells me it is included so all I have to do is give them breakfast (one of the few meals I can provide without burning... I rock at eggs and cereal and bagels.) She finds Ash clever and is amazed at his intelligence. She has yet to call him a terror, a brat, an awful child or an absolute train wreck (words that have previously been applied to my youngest... no I am not exaggerating).

The other two love her as well. Justice is becoming already less girly and thinks MJ is a saint. David likes her sons and her pool. They are having a blast. Sentances are filled with MJ. They are cool with it.

So one piece of the puzzle fit. And the puzzle piece would allow me to be close to Mom and Dad for now. And I think I need to be. I think the kids need to get back to Summit... because Rock Creek is nothing on Summit. I know that is where they need to be for their education so my goal is tax time when the budget is better to get back to Warren/Youngstown area.

But for just now, one piece would allow me to be here.

But that meant I had one week to get my butt an apartment here, now, because Rock Creek said no intradistrict transfer so I had to live in their district. Now. Or rather yesterday.

I found one. Yesterday.

So today I have to pull all of that off. I have to somehow enroll and set all of that up and there is a wheelbarrel of paperwork involved and again I am cringing. I wonder if I can talk my roommate into grabbing one of the handles. *snort*

Realistically, it should go smoothly from here. Realistically and this county are not friends. I keep meaning to introduce them but everytime I try, realistically runs off in fear. This county repells reality.

Anyway, now that I have stretched my writing muscles and gotten all that is bothering me off my chest (hah! hardly! I could go on and on! We haven't touched on relationships, or Justice and boys or-shut up! Enough procrastinating!) back to Siren's. Vance just did a no-no and I think he needs spanked...

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Whiny Little Brat

Today I feel whiny. I have had a headache for three days and our lives are in chaos and disorder and I have not gotten the first edit back from Odd Stuff and all of it has made me feel like a complete and total...
Whiny little brat.

I want to curl into a corner somewhere and cry and snarl at any and everyone who dares come near my little dark cave. I want to scratch and bite and claw the world into red ribbons. I want to run away and hide from the world. I want to sob.

I hate these moods. Instead, however, as I am me, no one knows (other than those who read my bloggy) that I am even in this mood. I mean, I have a headache and this I have mentioned. That the headache has lasted three days and has caused a blasted grey spot in my left eye (the same eye that caused the stroke fits previously... blech) is also known. That I am in a moody, bitchy, crabby ass cranky mood... well, nobody knows this. I am hiding it. I figure it this way. I am an artist. I write. I draw. I paint on cars. I am an artistic right brain kind of girl. I know I am moody. I know this is all me and that by being an artistic, moody, broody girl that it makes it hard enough to be around a flaky, head-in-the-clouds person all the time.
Why make it worse for everyone by being a CRABBY right brained artistic soul on top of everything else? So while internally I am screaming and wanting to hide or yell or pout, instead today I am trying to maintain functionality. I am trying to keep up the facade of what I am supposed to be, supposed to do. I am supposed to help everyone. I am supposed to fill certain roles. Just about everyday I wake up and fill those roles, whether I want to or not. Today is one of those days though, with the headache tearing at my eye sockets, with my eyes wanting to tear, that I just wish I could hide somewhere dark. Some where preferably a bit dank. Somewhere where it would be just me and my safe words.

Words never expect a thing of you. They lie calmly on the page. Characters do what you will them to. If you get sick of them you close the book. If the scene is too smelly, too painful, too angry, too scary or too hard you can turn the page. Life is not so easy. You just have to trudge on. There is no place to hide in the dark. There is no time to whine. If you whine, you only annoy or hurt the feelings of those you love, so shut up. If you worry, well, what exactly does that fix? But on days like today I wish I could be a selfish little brat. I wish I could. However I cannot. But I can write about it. While I smile and continue to pretend it is all okay.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Some people worry about ants...

Most people go on picnics and worry about the ants. Most people go on all sorts of lovely day-to-day activities and never have any sort of overly dramatic, chaotic, insane, whacked out things happen with their days.

Not I. I am the Queen of Chaos. A friend of mine once came home from a yard sale with a tee that read "Chaos, Panic, Disorder: My Work here is Done." They then handed this to me and advised that I wear it as a warning to those who did not know me and my propensity for disaster. I can take any simple thing and turn it to a full scale catastrophe. It is a gift. I do not know how, precisely I do it. I do not mean to do it. I mean, I am a writer. I am a people watcher. I would be happy, sitting, book in hand. Writing what others are doing and speaking of and not ever having anything to do with others panic and craziness.
However, I am a magnet for disaster. For example, a friend and I once thought we would take my daughter to a botanical show. Flowers, for goodness sake. Nothing could possibly go wrong with flowers. On the trip home we got some lovely pictures of the ball of flame that was once someones car... we had to drive through it. Not planned... not my fault exactly, but as I said chaos just is attracted to me. I would rather, say money, or fame, or terribly attractive famous rich men or chocolate covered men be attracted to me but no, chaos is attracted to me.

The point of all this lead in being, it happened again today. My friend Ami and I decided today was a wonderful day for a picnic. At the last minute we decided to change location and go to Lake Erie in Madison, Ohio and have said picnic to get our kids together. We packed lunches and off we went. On the drive on our cells we discussed the neat clouds. They were kind of layered. Bottom dark the tops looking like mountains.

Hm mm.

After lunch we went down to the water. I snapped some pics with my cell of the kids looking for shells. In a few, which are viewable on my facebook and my Space, you can see the ominous clouds (of which, we were cheerfully oblivious to) as we played in the sun. The sun shone down on us. The sand was hot under our feet. The water was warm as bathwater. The wind was blowing and the lake looked so pretty.

We went up to the playground and the kids were on the merry-go-round when the screams started. My youngest started yelling, "Tornado!" I thought to myself, I cannot believe every adult in this place is listening to my seven year old and panicking.

And then finally I looked where he was pointing frantically.

Okay. Yeah. Sure. That sure was a tornado. I had never seen one that close before. Not just appearing right in broad daylight out of nowhere. I mean you get some warning. High winds. Rain. It doesn't just come out of nowhere on a sunny day.

But there it was spinning like a graceful angel coming down from the sky. For about a minute (which is quite awhile with a tornado bearing down on you) I stared at it stupidly. Then I grabbed Ami's arm and I believe I said something like 'tornado.' I really don't remember. I then remember thinking, "No one is going to believe us unless I take a picture. They are going to think we dramatized this whole thing."

So, instead of running, like all of the rest of the (I must say, far smarter parents, Ami included, who was trying to gather children, mine included) parents and children, I pulled out my cell phone and began snapping pictures of the tornado. I quickly also identified that as it was over the lake, it was not a tornado. It was going to be a waterspout. If it made land it would be a tornado. So long as it stayed water bound it would stay waterspout.

I snapped and tried zoom and all the while yelled at my kids, "Run!"

The flaw with this is the same flaw that my kids have every darn time something like this happens. They don't listen. Somehow if their mom thinks things are safe enough to take pictures, then well, why run? Finally I spun and realized they would not go so long as I stood and took pictures and by risking me, I was risking them.

Also, when it hit water, it grew. Like a lot. It hit water and sucked up water. It went from gentle spiral of air and cloud to monster of water. It now was huge. And then it moved faster. It moved faster for shore. And there I was. On the shore.

I decided I needed to get the hell away from the shore and inland fast.

I ran as fast as a big girl can beat feet for my car. I ran and the kids ran and we made it to the car.

About a block or so away it either hit land and lost speed or just lost power... I really don't know which. I just saw it spiral off into the clouds again... We circled back and went to get Hannah's shoes (abandoned by the merry-go-round when we all ran for cars because we couldn't find them and I was taking pictures).

But again, nothing ever is JUST a picnic for me. Sometimes it is a picnic and a waterspout. But never JUST a picnic.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

What I'm Reading...

So as a terrible bibliophile, at any given time I am not only working on my book but plunging into the worlds of other authors in my (snort) spare time. For instance this week at night I reread in three nights (would have been less but I forced myself to go to sleep) Sunshine by Robin McKinley. Other than having the worlds greatest descriptions (who else can describe vamp flesh as the grey of mushrooms at the back of your fridge?) she has the ability to completely stir you (your, ahem, juices so to speak) with mere suggestion. In others of her work, for instance Blue Sword, in a scene with Luthe in one line (and I haven't read that book for YEARS and it still sticks in my head and can give me a bit of a shiver) she suggests all that most novelists do with tons of description in that ONE LINE. And I believe, and I may even be able to quote it exactly. The line is something like, "Then I look forward to no sleep whatsoever." I was left breathless. How she can do that is a marvel to me and why I scoop her off the shelf as soon as she goes to print to this day. She is my number one fave author and it was probably stupid to buy (guiltily admits) ANOTHER copy of Sunshine, but I found it on SALE and picked it up this week because god only knows what I did with my other, hence the reread.
Other than the McKinley, I am listening, on the helacious drive back and forth to work (over 45 min each way) Laurell K. Hamilton's The Harlequin. I have also read everything she has written (okay, lie. Still have not read Strange Candy or that fantasy one. Everything Anita or Merry then) and she is my number two (when did I start numbering?) fave author of all time. So this is another reread (does audio count as reread?). However her world is so lovely and graphic and so not like my world that I cannot resist the occasional visit and twice a year is never enough.
Then we have the at-work book. The at work book is the book that has less attention span, as I read it between calls and on breaks, so I have to be able to drop it mid sentance and pick it back up and still get it. So I am reading Temping Fates. It is a very good book and I am giggling my way through it. Another great at-work read is Stephanie Plum's by Janet Evanovich. I must admit I love Stephanie. I am a hardcore Ranger nut, however. My friend, Chrissy, she goes Joe. Not me. I am all about Ranger. She thinks this is due to marital status and age. I think that its because I make more dangerous and less logical life choices in general. Who knows? Regardless, Ranger, baby, all the way. And who wouldn't love a girl who keeps a cake in her freezer?
Any way, now that I have given some general, what I am reading... what are you reading?

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Bridesmaides and Bedposts

So, I never did get to write yesterday. This was due to having, instead, being a bridesmaid. It turns out that although I got up at the very buttcrack of dawn (subjectivly) to primp and put on far more makeup than I would normally consider donning and although one would assume on my day off I would have a higher word count than normal, again, life sometimes gets in the way.
Yesterday, my best friend from highschool tied the proverbial knot. She and I were friends for all of the big milestones. I remember sitting on the floor of her room, Ouiga board between us and asking who we would one day marry (okay, maybe all little girls don't do that, but we were odd.) I remember stealing her sweaters for school or riding my bike to her house (she lived five miles away... so this was an endurance trial and proof of the dedication I had to our friendship.) I remember getting ready for all the dances in her bathroom and room with curling iron and makeup brushes in hand, giggling over music and talking over boys. Then her mom taking pictures of us in the livingroom... and now she was BRIDE. Ah, and we have been through so much in between (we are old ladies, early thirties now) so when her mom took our picture together and we were again all dressed up I almost bawled.

But it was beautiful; she was beautiful. I posted some of my better pictures of her day online. Not a good writing day, but a good living one. At the winery afterward it was one of those "life comes full circle" kind of moments. Here we were, so long and far away from those awkward little girls, and yet in a way, those girls would be part of who we were forever. Those bookish little girls who read too much, loved art and music... one the artist and still is... and one... the writer. Some dreams never die. And some, in the sun on a beautiful August day with the wind blowing and the sun shining, just become a new dream. Some dreams are born. And even an old non-romantic like me can get a little dewy eyed. Maybe there is a happy ending out there for everyone. I am so glad Trish found hers. May they be happy... ever after.