Tuesday, January 19, 2016

The sea was angry that day my friends...

A good friend once told me I was her George Costanza.   How you doin' Shannon?...it is obligatory to say that like Wendy Williams.  We all have a friend like George, you know the one, on the verge of being really cool, but something always comes along at the last minute to swat them back down to reality.  I didn't take offense to the moniker when Shannon bestowed it on me.  I saw it as a badge of honor.  Now, I am not letting Shannon off the hook, she is not any cooler than me...she stands shoulder to shoulder with me in nerdom... I just  always have some mishap that tips the scales in her favor.  In this case it was a wave, or to be a bit more precise...many, many waves.

I was dreading the anniversary of my mom's death.  I wanted to get out of my head and needed a good distraction.  Last year we took the girls to Great Wolf Lodge as an escape.  Remember that escapade?  No?  Well here is a recap for those that are new to my blog;


Good, now that you are caught up I decided on something a little less dramatic.  I booked a weekend on the Cape in a hotel with a wave pool and 2 small water slides.  Not so overwhelming and what I thought would be a little more their speed.

So back to the weekend...  Chuck picks up some breakfast items for us to bring.   We are a family of 5.  We are staying 2 nights.  One of my children does not eat.  EVER.  Our plan is to have one breakfast in and one at a restaurant.  Here is what Chuck purchased;
        * 12 full sized donuts
        *  16 mini-cereal boxes
        *  2 boxes of Pop Tarts (each with 8 tarts each)
        *  There may or may not have been a box of granola bars too

I was not going to be seen carrying 13 Price Chopper  bags through the hotel.  There is nothing that screams "WHITE TRASH" more than using plastic grocery bags as your luggage.  In an effort to not look like hobos, I emptied out the grocery bags into a suitcase.  We get situated in the hotel and head down to the wave pool.  The kids are having a blast.  Well, 2 out of the 3 are.  Emily, our 2 year old has a broken leg.  Of course, right?  We have plans to go to a water park and one of my kids breaks a limb. That is a blog for another day though.

Things are going well, we have a nice dinner and head back to our room.  Chuck goes to turn the TV on and it doesn't work.  It wasn't working when we checked in, the hotel said they would send someone to fix it.  As you can imagine, it can't be fixed.  So at 8:45 p.m. they tells us to pack up and they will send someone to bring us to our new room.  Yay!  We hastily pack everything up, no time to make everything neat and organized so I am forced to throw our belongings in the flippin' grocery bags after all!!  The only thing missing from this hobo train were bindlestiffs....apparently that is the proper name of a hobo stick.  You are more than welcome for that bit of useless trivia.  A housekeeper comes to our hotel door, she is going to assist us in bringing the roll-a-way bed to our new room.  Now their are ladies-- and then there are ladies songs are written about!  She is of the latter.  Forget "Your Body is  a Wonderland", forget, "Brick House" she may just be the inspiration for one of the greatest songs ever written...I'm a Little Tea Pot, because man, was she short and stout.  That is saying a lot coming from me, because we share the same body type.  Now, it may not seem relevant for me to comment on her body type, but it will all make sense in a minute.  So as the hobo train starts leaving the station, I am carrying an over tired child with a broken leg and have various totes, etc, wrapped around me, the girls each have 2-3 Price Chopper bags adorning them and Chuck has his hands full with the 2 suitcases, the girls swimmy vests, etc.  Herculina (my nickname for the housekeeper) starts pushing the roll-a-way bed out of the room.  We need to go to the first floor, we were on the 2nd.  I ask Herculina if there is an elevator...she pauses, and then answers "no".  So as we take this sh*t show on the road, Herculina turns and makes a beeline for the other end of the hallway. We make it downstairs without killing each other or breaking anymore limbs and wouldn't you know it, Herculina is already in the room with the roll-a-way bed and not a bead of sweat on her!  Now, I am not calling her a liar, who knows maybe she had a weight belt on under her uniform and she flung the cot on her back as she navigated her way down a tight stairwell, wait, no, yeah...she is a liar!  She took a secret elevator!  She had to have.

So this is where I would say we all got a good night's sleep, but I would be lying.  It sucked!  This new room was so figgin hot and the air conditioner was as loud as a jet engine.  I somehow was relegated to the roll-a-way bed which actually, believe it or not was a hammock in disguise.  I laid down on it and no word of a lie my ass was about a quarter of an inch off the ground.   I thought a sink hole had opened up underneath the hotel just as I got into bed!  I was terrified!  I thought I was going to be lost forever, but then I remembered Herculina had just started her shift and she would come save me!  I started praying to all that was holy she didn't hear me mutter "liar" or "elevator" under my breath earlier in the night.

Chuck and Emmie head out to explore the Cape.  I take the girls back to the wave pool.  Sara is in all her glory...Anna, not so much.  She would wait for the waves to stop and then take a turn swimming.  I was hanging with her on the side of the pool and would occasionally go in with Sara.  I was kind of avoiding the water a little bit this morning too.  My regular bathing suit was still soaked so I threw on the extra one I brought. It is one I have from just after I had Emily.  It was a little loose when I put it on, but it would do.  I was so WRONG!  Once it was introduced to water it took on a life of its own.  The ass part was hanging down to about my knees, whenever I would get in the water all the air trapped in it would bubble up and all the kids in the pool would look at me as if I were a farting machine...the rouching (to help hide my post baby body) was floating around me like those booms they put in the water after a massive oil spill.  I was a mess.  Hence the reason I was avoiding the water too.  Anyway, I had to be a mom and divide my time equally so Sara and I were frolicking in the waves having a great time.  She wanted to sit down in the surf with her.  Sure, that would be fun.  So you know how the Victoria's Secret Models frolic in the surf having their pictures taken?  OK, forget that image completely!  I was the total opposite.  The sea was angry that day my friends!  The waves were no joke.  I got knocked over and could not get up!  Sara thought I was being funny, granted I was laughing, it would be my luck to drown in the undertow at an indoor wave pool.  So there I was all tangled up in my bathing suit...because it was an old maternity suit it had about as much material as a bedspread.  So there I was rolling ass over tea kettle in the surf, over and over and over again.  My kids are in hysterics because they think I am trying to be funny.  My bathing suit is floating away and not covering the parts it really needs to.  I am trying to put all my lady bits back in the suit but sure enough when I get one part covered a wave would come and knock it loose kind of like when you finally think you have a fitted sheet figured out and that one corner keeps popping up?  Yeah, kind of like that!  I am flashing the entire wave pool, with each wave it is a different peep show, moon, stars, another wave--another round of the moon and stars coming out for all the world to see.  My only shot at survival was trying to save myself.  My kids were useless, I had no faith in the lifeguard.  Why you ask?  Oh, because he was slouched in a chair, with his sweat pants AND sneakers on, listening to music on those over-sized headphones...I know he was listening to music and not just noise canceling headphones because his head was bobbing along to a beat...and chewing on a straw to boot.  So yeah, my confidence level in him was about zero. 

I did finally manage to drag myself out of the man-made surf and I guess I an no worse for the wear.  I guess Shannon was right all those years ago.  I am George Costanza.


Sunday, January 3, 2016

Hey Barbie, I own you b*tch!

So this blog has been sitting in my draft file for while now, I just haven't been in the mood to finish it.  I finally got the energy to sit down and write.  Writing has always been like therapy for me so I figure I might as well work through my sh*t.  Like I said, some of this was written weeks and weeks ago, but I have updated where appropriate.  So here goes....

I have not been in the best of spirits lately.  I am really dreading the holiday without my mom.  I wish I could just curl up in a ball and sleep through the next month and a half.  Thanksgiving is a few days away, my favorite holiday, and I just don't feel it this year.  I have my 25th high school reunion coming up and I don't feel like going.  I am just not in a social mood.  Then Christmas is right around the corner.  Last year, Christmas Eve 2014 was the last time I saw my mom alive outside of a hospital.  She was at my house, sitting on the over-sized chair in the living room.  Every time I look at it I think of her.  I can't imagine looking at it on Christmas Eve this year.  I start to panic just thinking about it!

So with all this going on I have been waxing poetic about life....mine in particular.  Let's just say it has been less than spectacular lately.

*My older two girls are at that beautiful stage in life where they are embarrassed to be seen with me.  Oh, how do I know you ask?  Well, I took them to a movie with their buddy and stopped at McDonalds for ice cream on the way home.  It was a Friday night...I thought I was the cool mom until they whispered among each other then asked if they could sit by themselves at another table.  So there I was sitting alone on a Friday night with my ice-cream and  newspaper I borrowed from the manager.  Not so cool after all.

*Emily has become fascinated by my tattoo.  Of course she spends most of her waking time staring at me in the bathroom...it could be in the shower, she likes to come in and pull the corner back and spy on me, it could be brushing my teeth, or sitting on the toilet.  She has seen me in various states of undress a million times.  Guess when she notices my tattoo?  WHEN WE ARE IN A PUBLIC BATHROOM OF COURSE!!   So I have this tiny little flower where the top of my leg meets my hip... Long story short, it is not exactly where I wanted it but that is a story for another time!  So she starts asking about it and I explain it is a pretty flower tattoo.  Now keep in mind, Emily is two and she believes everything that is covered up by shorts is a bum.  She makes no distinction between a hip, lower abdomen, inner thigh...you get the gist.  She also doesn't quite get the concept of a permanent tattoo.  Her only experience is those crappy rub on ones that she picks off in 2 seconds flat.  So I think the conversation is over.  I was wrong, my friends.  SO. VERY. WRONG!  We are now standing in line to pay for our breakfast when she starts talking, very loudly I might add.  "Mom why do you have a cutie mark on your gina?"  (Cutie Mark for those of you without young children is the tattoo like marks My Little Ponies have)  Umm, Em it is on the top of my leg...I try to explain to her several times over and it ends with her crying because I won't say I have a cutie mark on my 'gina.  Again, cool mom is no where to be found!  (For the record a similar, equally embarrassing situation occurred when  she saw a tampon for the first time).

*Since the day Sara was born 8 1/4 years ago our children have become all consuming.  This includes during the evening hours.  For the past 8 1/4 years it is a rare occasion we actually sleep in the same bed.  I think the fates align about as often as the sighting of Halley's Comet.  One of the girls inevitably needs us for something.  It is completely mind blowing we actually went on the have 2 other children.  Recently my husband and I had some free time, the older 2 were in school and Em was off playing...we decided to try and take advantage of some "almost alone" time.  I said "try" because instead of being something romantic it turned into one of those cliche Rom-Com movies about the super stressed suburban couple doing their best to raise their children while everything gets wacky and goes haywire.  Sadly, we are that couple.   We get into our room and no sooner do we lock the door, toddler foot steps come shuffling down the hall calling for Dad.  "AND.....CUT!"  I swear to God I could hear Nora Ephron's ghost laughing at us from the corner of the room.  Again, cool, spontaneous mom was MIA.

*The last straw came during an epic shower adventure.  The girls gave me a really hard time getting out the door for school.  Emily was having diarrhea and the dog and cats were having a grudge match.  I was beyond stressed and needed an escape.  I put the dog in the kitchen, locked the cats in separate bedrooms and set Emily up with an ipad and Oreos and went to take a shower.  Great!  No effing towels left for me.  We have plenty of towels and Chuck does laundry every single day.  However, more often than not, I have no towel for my shower.  So as my faithful readers can predict it was table cloth time.  Yup, I had my old stand-byl table cloth by my side as I walked into the bathroom for some peace.  I get in the shower and reach for the shampoo.  It is gone.  Not a drop left.  I was in favor of Sara taking showers, I am now reconsidering.  She uses an entire bottle of shampoo and about a dozen towels each time out.  So I stooped to an even lower low than the table cloth towel...I used Mary-Alice's, our dog's shampoo.  Yeah, you read that right, I used her Hartz Extra Gentle Puppy Shampoo.  At least it was Jasmine scented.  So as I am drying off the wet dog smell from my naked mom body with a flippin table cloth I notice a naked Barbie staring up at me all Judgey-McJudgerton like.  She was giving me the stink eye with her perfect blue eyes, her long skinny legs attached to her unrealistic waist and her huge rack.  Then I thought for a moment...  I bought that f*cking doll!  I stood a little taller, looked her dead in the eye and said, out loud, "Hey Barbie, I own you b*tch!"

I decided then and there I was taking back my life!  Insert Rachel Platten's Fight Song here!
                                 This is my fight song-take back my life song!


I called the gym I belong to and signed up for personal training.  I started at 8 a.m. on Thanksgiving morning.  Take that Barbie!  I was doing great but Christmas derailed me a bit.  I plan to start back soon.

Thanksgiving came and went.  My brother and sister-in-law put on a great meal but I just couldn't get into the spirit of the day. I tried, but...meh.

I ended up driving down last minute to my 25th High School reunion.  I didn't stay very long, again, just wasn't in the mood.  It did end up turning out to be just what I needed.  As I was heading out I stopped to say hi to one of my old classmates.  Turns out he was in the same boat...his dad had recently died and he wasn't going to come to the reunion but changed his mind last minute also.  We cried together, laughed and cried some more.  This is someone I knew and kind of hung out with in high school, but most of our conversations were just things like hey, what's up?  Do you have any Bartles and James?  But this time we were both in the right place and the right time and that talk with him was just what I needed.

Christmas Eve was at least 100 times more difficult than anything I could've imagined.  Full on anxiety attack, couldn't even pretend for the kids.  I would rather have been in a hole somewhere by myself than let my girls see me like that.  Christmas Day was the same misery.  I did fake it for the girls but my mind was a million miles away all day.  I don't even remember what they got for Christmas and I am friggin Santa Claus! 

Oh well, they say the first year is the hardest, though I am not sure it will ever get easier...the holidays just plain sucked. 

But, I just keep telling myself...I am better than Barbie....I am better than Barbie!

Here is to a New, Less Stressful Year!  In the name of all that is Holy, it HAS to be better than last year.