I’m mad. I spend most of my days being mad. Mad that no one else seems to care. No one else is playing by the rules. Everyone else is acting like this isn’t a thing. That 400,000 people haven’t died. Maybe we don’t know any of them, but that makes us privileged. Privileged by race, socio-economics, our jobs, our health insurance, the list goes on.
I keep getting told that I can’t live my life afraid. Afraid of dying. Afraid of getting sick. Afraid of everything. I am so sick of being patronized with this “advice.” I am not afraid. I am caring. I care about others. I care about myself. I care about my family. I care about being around for my family. I am a fairly healthy adult, but I did get the flu one year that took me out for 2 weeks and led to pneumonia. My husband got tonsillitis last year and ended up in Cleveland Clinic ICU. And he’s way healthier than me. I’m just thinking you never know what strain you are going to be dealt, so I am not taking my chances.
So I stay home. My kids stay home. We haven’t eaten in a restaurant in almost a year. I don’t run races or train with my running group. My husband doesn’t go to the gym. 99% of my kids’ activities are via Zoom. Boy Scouts, viola, guitar, trombone. Robotics was an online tournament this year. I haven’t hugged my parents in a year. They haven’t hugged my kids in a year. We celebrated my nephew’s birthday in their doorway, masked for a quick present open.
Christmas was all Zoom. My family is small so we met in my sister’s freezing garage, masked and socially distanced by family and opened presents. No food, no hugs, just a quick sad celebration and them home. My husband’s families are bigger, so those are all Zoom, which I hate. You know what’s worse than social gatherings for socially anxious introverts? Zoom calls. Where you have to yell to be heard (not happening). Where your face blows up for all to see when you do talk, and when you do, you can only look at how terrible you look in the camera. So I stay largely silent, which makes me look like a super bitch.
My family and I have contracted into ourselves this past year. Some in our circle can’t understand why we don’t just loosen up. Why we are so strict. Why just one hug is a no-go for us.
I am so mad that this became political. Remember 9/11? We all got together and were one for a while. American flag on every porch. Remember WWII? Rationing of everything. Working together? We can’t even agree to put a fucking piece of cloth over our faces.
So, I am mad. Mad at the selfishness. Mad at the ignorance. Mad that I am the freaking COVID Karen when all I want is for someone, anyone to show a lick of common sense and the decency to just stay home.
I just might publish this rough, angry verbal diarrhea. It’s raw. Like I am right now. Maybe writing again will make me feel better.
I have been married for almost 18 years, together almost 24. I have what you’d call an unconventional marriage. You see, I am the stereotypical “man” in the relationship. You know how many complain about their lazy, unmotivated, and not involved with the kids partners? Well, that’s not my complaint. My complaint is the opposite. My husband is the best, all those things. My complaint is that I can’t compete.
When the kids were 1 and 3, after a year of unemployment and stay at home dadness, Hubs got a traveling job. It was either travel or nothing, so travel it was. For the next 6 years, he had a nightmare of a job with several companies. Same shit, different company. At the beginning he was home every other weekend, driving from Maryland to Northwest Ohio on Fridays and returning Sunday, an 8 hour drive, 7 if he peed in a jar. (JK, he didn’t, but developed super great bladder strength and a knack for dehydration.) The jobs got marginally better, the best ones giving him weekly airplane trips home. Travel took him everywhere – Texas, Florida, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania. He was all over.
When he was home, he was 100% home. No work, no distractions. Just 100% husband and dad. He played the handyman, the gardener, the heavy lifter, and the best part for the kids and me, the fun dad and doting husband.
Roughly 3 years ago, he finally got a job near home with a normal commute. Dad and hubby was home. After such an absence, he jumped into parenting with both feet. Boy Scout leader and Robotics coach, all in the same season. And life partner duties? House projects – check. Yard work/trash clean up – check. Cooking – check. Cleaning – check.
And so it’s been for 3+ years. Many of my friends complain about their lazy husbands. Mine cooks almost every night. Mine cleans the house and can’t stand clutter. He chauffeurs the kids to their events. He sits and does homework and keeps on top of them.
He does all this on top of bringing home a nice paycheck doing the incredibly stressful work of building and managing low income housing developments for those in need as his day job. He does the work of what some companies pay 5 people to do. When he tells me about his day, I want to crawl under the table and cry from just hearing about the stress of it.
AND THEN, on top of all this, he works out 3x a week if he can escape for a few hours. And ladies and gents, he’s got a rockin’ bod. He’s almost 42 and has defined abs, a super cute butt and arms that made the shirt “Sun’s Out, Guns Out” possible. He will eat protein shakes for dinner while we’re pigging out on macaroni and cheese and hot dogs.
So, in summary, he’s the whole package. Sweet, hardworking, funny, loving. Here’s my problem. I’m none of those things. When we got married at the tender age of 22 and 24, my parents jokingly told HIM that it wasn’t too late to back out. After 22 years of living with me, they knew what he was in for.
My parents are immaculately clean, organized people. All those genes went to my sister. In fact, I think she stole some of the few that may have been set aside for me. I am messy and unorganized. I can’t blame the kids and no time, I always have been. I want to be those things, but then when the time comes to put up or shut up, I usually shut up and binge Netflix or get into a really good book, or hell, take a nap.
You see, I am a depressed, socially anxious introvert. The outside world is overwhelming. Social events, kid functions, school, work, grocery shopping, they all take everything out of me. I relive the slightest interactions for hours afterwards mortified about what I said and did. This makes me hesitant to venture into the big scary world. I have terribly mean brain weasels that tell me I don’t fit in and I’m not good at anything, so why even try? I fight these demons back every day I get out of bed. And I do fight them. Most days I win, some days I don’t.
With all these crazy train thoughts running through my head at full steam, oftentimes, there’s just nothing left at the end of the day. When I cook, it always involves mac n cheese as a side and mostly comes from a bag of frozen something. When I clean, it’s half assed and the bare minimum. And shenanigans in the bedroom? Forget it. There’s just nothing left.
So my man comes to the rescue. All. The. Time. He takes the kids and goes to social functions. He takes them sledding or out to the pool. He comes up with dinner or orders out. He gives me alone time. He cleans up the house and fixes the broken stuff. He mows the lawn and maintains the cars.
I guess my point is, when you see him, give him a pat on the back. There’s much more than a hot bod there. He’s one of the most caring, devoted, and loving people around. I hope to one day be worth all that, but until then, know that I am trying my best to deserve what I have been so generously given.
So my best friend finally got married. I’ve wanted to write about the experience for over a month now, but couldn’t quite make up my mind on the tone I wanted to prevail throughout the post. Balls to the wall political rant? Sweet, sappy version? Or through my most comfortable form of communication…humor and self-embarrassment?
Naturally, I choose the last option. For those of you not lucky enough to be invited to a gay fall wedding, here’s an inside peek.
Attendees came from all walks of life. Some wearing their finest leather assless chaps. Some decked out in bedazzled sequins and feather boas. Some with not many clothes at all. The grooms shashayed down the aisle while Voguing in their rainbow suits. Disco balls and club lights flashed the crowds as they recited showtune quotes for vows. The ceremony concluded with groping and sloppy kisses while It’s Raining Men played riotously in the background. White doves were released and condoms were shot out of a canon. After the ceremony the guests lubed up appropriately and jumped into the big ole gay orgy pile.
Sound about what you’d expect?
Nah. Clearly none of that happened. Although sometimes I think that’s what some of my coworkers think I attended. What I did get to be a part of and experience was nothing short of beautiful. What it really was was an elegant, picturesque ceremony atop a swank hotel overlooking the Bay Bridge of San Francisco. Not a dry eye in the house as two of my favorite men on the planet exchanged heartfelt vows after waiting a decade to commit their lives together officially. Family and friends surrounded them for a delightful dinner followed by an epic reception, where toasts and well wishes abounded. Wine flowed freely while we danced the night away to a meticulously planned (and awesome) playlist of music. Cake was phenomenal. Best of all was my best friend’s dad, who like most dads on their kids’ wedding days, became quite sentimental and stood up and stole the show with a touching toast on how proud and happy he was for his son and his new son-in-law.
I had the privilege of reading a wonderful poem by Walt Whitman and the even better privilege of being an official witness to the nuptials. It was a wonderful heartfelt day, painstakingly planned down to last detail as most couples do to ensure one of the most important days of their lives is remembered fondly.
But alas, it would not truly be a story of my own if I did not in some way humiliate myself and bring up some form of bathroom humor. Now, if you’ve ever seen the SNL Gay Summer Wedding Xanax spoof, you’ll have some idea of the pressure I was under to look fabulous for this wedding. Too bad I had hopped off the diet wagon a full month earlier and was a bit disappointed the Spanx I chose did not completely transform my curves into the likes of Kim Kardashian. The Spanx, although $40, did not quite squeeze my baby food belly around to plump up my ass, nor did it hoist the girls back up to their original pre-children spots.
Dammit. Oh well, I was just happy to be a part of the whole experience. No one was looking at me anyways.
Then, due to a forgetful photographer, my boys were late to dinner. Which meant my wine glass kept getting topped off on an empty stomach, and before I knew it, I was three sheets to the wind. And I had to pee. Sort of dizzy and light headed, I stumbled down a flight of stairs to the ladies loo.
Now girls, we all know Spanx are not the easiest to get off for a quick pee right? And this one piece do-joby clasped at the crotch. Joy. Not easy to undo when sober, let alone 3+ drinks in. I had a genius idea, which I’ve accomplished before many times with swimsuits and said Spanx accoutrements that I proceeded to try once again. Just pull my undies and that fat grasping apparatus aside, hold it, pee quick, wipe and done! Thorough hand washing and I would be good to go.
Not so much. About halfway through I realized something was amiss. My tush started to feel wet. OH MY GOD, in my drunken state, I couldn’t feel my panties and didn’t pull them aside with the Spanx!!!! I was peeing right through my underwear. With a loud, “SHIT!” I went into emergency planning mode. Dress was clear of wetness, thank God, but undies and Spanx were soaked. I was alone, no phone, no purse, no girlfiends to call because hello! I was at a GAY wedding. Lots of men, most of whom are already extremely uncomfortable with girl parts, let alone ones in peril. I had to think fast. Undies gone, natch. I’ll just wear the Spanx, that’s fine. SHIT. Spanx soaked up the back. The whole apparatus had to go. Off comes the dress, then the spanx, then the underwear. I started to throw the underwear away, a causality of war, but then I realized I had nowhere to put the Spanx. This puppy was $40 freakin dollars!!! No freakin way was I going to throw this thing away to save myself a few moments of embarrassment. I have given birth for God’s sake! This is nothing on the humiliation scale of my life.
So I wadded up my wet undergarments into a paper towel and tried to make it fist size without much luck. I escaped the bathroom and had to walk down the side of a bar full of patrons into our private room, where not a few eyes glanced toward the conspicuous wad in my hand. I quickly threw it into my purse as my husband exclaimed loudly, “Hey, what’s that in your hand?” SHHHH! Not now! LATER!
I then got to spend a still awesome night surrounded by wonderful men (and some lovely chicks too I might add) who would have been totally skeeved out their #1 fan was without her britches and complete with nothing but the sheer will of God keeping my stomach sucked into a dress that really could have used some girdling power.
So there you have it. A wonderful wedding, turned into a story all about me and peeing my pants! It has to be embarrassing or I clearly wasn’t there. It was a wonderful night, a wonderful trip and a true joy to see my best friend marry his perfect match in life. And just over a month later, they are still married, so already they are beating many straight marriage success rates.
Love you both. Congrats Jay and Desi!
And now, if you need tips on attending a gay wedding, I give you expert advice by Key & Peele.
Good news! After a trial week working from home, my husband has been given the green light to work every other week from the “home office.” Yes, folks Fun Dad is coming home, at least fortnightly. No, that’s not right, but I really want to use that word, so go with it.
He will be setting up an elaborate bat cave downstairs, whereupon he will put out nationwide construction fires and calm down very panicky subcontractors and clients. He’s my Bruce Wayne of Project Management.
Mark doesn’t leave the house. Ever. Mark is also somewhat allergic to cats, or something in the house anyways, and by the end of his trial period last week he was barely breathing and was a snotty, red-nosed, wheezing mess. I think this has been made worse since he really hasn’t lived at home in roughly 5 years, so any tolerance he had built up prior to has been blown away by weeks away with regular housekeeping, mints on pillows and other such luxuries.
So, the question becomes this. What can I do with my kitty-cat? My Ezra. My snuggle bunny since 1999. My beautiful black cat, who’s not once peed outside her litterbox, and outside of an occasional runny nose and poop danglers, has been an exemplary cat?
Here’s where your help comes in. Below I have outlined a complicated point system determining husband and cat’s attractions and detractions. At the end, we can decide which one will have to go.
Point Husband: Husband takes up less of the bed at night than Cat.
Point Cat: Husband snores louder.
Point to each: BOTH have the annoying trait of poking at me for attention after the kids have gone to sleep and I finally have 2 minutes to myself. Both eventually bite if they are overstimulated.
Point Husband: I don’t have to scoop husband’s poop.
Point Cat: Cat does not take 30 minute poops 3X a day.
Point Husband: Husband sheds less. Unless he’s shaving, then the sink looks like a yeti trimmed his pubes. Wash it down the drain MAN!
Point Husband: Husband helps around the house more.
Point Cat: Husband does not get excited when I take naps, whereas Cat is thrilled.
Point to each: Both hate dogs. Con. Neither would pick up poop if we finally grant my oldest’s wish to give him a dog.
Point Cat: Cat loves my new boots. She rubs her face on them in appreciation. Husband goes, “WHERE’D YOU GET THOSE?!” Dang, I didn’t think he’d notice since I still have the boxes hidden in the car.
Point Husband: Husband is a pro traveler. Not once during our last trip did he howl from his cage.
I have a confession to make. I might have been a wee bit selfish and assholey about Father’s Day. It may not have occurred to me to put any effort into it until the actual day. And then I blew it. Big time.
First, Mother’s Day was a freakin national holiday for me and I took it VERY seriously. No one was taking this day away from me. I did what I wanted, when I wanted, how I wanted and I did not wipe one butthole that was not solely behind me for one whole day. It was a big deal. I prepped Mark for weeks that I was taking this day. No presents. No cards. No breakfast in bed (besides the bed was already full of crumbs from my nacho binge the night before anyways). No need. JUST LEAVE ME ALONE. So he did, they did. Like a boss. He took the day and enjoyed the kids without me. It was awesome.
So – he set the bar pretty high right? I should have followed suit and let him have a day all to himself, bought him a cool gift, or at the very least become an animal in the sack right? Nope. Not at all. First, I was tired. We’d been in the sun all day. I just wanted to sleep for cryin out loud, and since 50 Shades and my new smut addiction have come about, he hasn’t had much to complain about. (Gross, I know, I’ll stop. I can hear my sister ewwing from 2 miles away.)
AND, I also may have gone a bit over budget this month, so spending any money, even on him, would have just made him mad, so the present was a nonstarter.
My big hang-up, and the thing that made me kind of an asshole, was my whole attitude about the whole thing. I might have had the teeny tiny thought that he didn’t deserve a day off. I do the work Monday through Friday. I wipe the butts (can you tell I’m getting a wee bit tired of doing this?), I use all my vacation on mystery fevers, I worry what the mystery fevers are, I pack lunches, I fix dinner (kind of, they get fed anyways, PB&J counts people), I chauffeur to med checks, doctors, soccer, karate, daycare and so on. I work full time, do the pick ups, rush home to fix dinner (kind of, see above), unpack, OK, I’m getting tired of typing this, let’s just say I do a lot. By myself.
So, I kind of got my panties in a bunch and ignored any sort of planning or putting any thought into the day. I may not have given him the day because this was his first time home in two weeks and I NEEDED him to be with the kids.
Problem is, he didn’t deserve my attitude. His job isn’t his choice, a sucky local job market makes it so he has to travel to find work. It’s a good job, good pay with a good company and an awesome opportunity for him that at the same time allows our family to stay put near our support systems and surroundings with which we are familiar. He gets to come home every weekend mostly and when he does, he hits the ground running.
He gets home, maintains the outside (with the exception of my May only gardening helpfulness), does trash duty, pool duty, fixes all that’s been broken (because I’m just a girl, math is hard!), helps out his family, and cooks all the weekend meals. This is all in addition to organizing fun nights like outdoor movie night, trips to the Zoo, swim parties and cookouts. All with two kids hanging off him. Then he catches a 7 a.m. flight back to his hotel “home.”
So, it’s not like he’s livin the dream either. And he hates it. I mean, the job is great, but it’s the crazy number of miles away with no end in sight that bites. Plus, he’s a way better dad than I’ll ever be a mom, even just two days a week. Sure, he might miss a few details and match G in horrendous clothes, but really, there’s not much to complain about regarding his parenting skills. He has more energy, more creativity, and basically the mentality of a 12 year old. No wonder kids love him. He’s wicked fun, indefatigable (word of the day toilet paper), and the most creative dad on the planet. Oh yeah, and none of it’s forced. Even before we had kids, I could find him playing with his nieces and nephews when the rest of the adults were being all grown uppity together.
So, this is my public apology. I am sorry honey for being such an asshat. You know I’m not perfect and you love me anyways. You’ve put up with me for close to 18 years and this is no where near my first fuck up. I’ll make it up to you. Maybe with some steak, Killian’s and a rowdy romp in the hay once the kids go to bed. What can I say, he’s easy to please. No ties for this guy…well maybe we’ll throw some ties in there, you know, just for fun. 🙂
I came home from work this evening to see my kids running up to me with joy. They both took a springing leap into my outstretched arms as I knelt down to say hello. They were so excited about their days they started clamoring together. I got a few snippets of “and then we went outside and saw…” and a bit of “Janey played a princess, and I was…,” before I laughingly told them to slow down and go one at a time. As I stood to listen to their stories, a wonderful smell wafted from the kitchen. I walk in to see my husband cooking away at a bubbling, sizzling stovetop. He looks up and smiles and says, “How was your day? I got off early, picked up the kids and thought I’d start dinner and surprise you.”
Later that night, I sit next to the tub, playing along with a riveting adventure between Ariel and Nemo, while the kids giggled and splashed away. Then, after they were dried and nestled in their beds, I laid in bed with them, read them each a bedtime story as they sleepily yawned and asked for another one. I shushed them with a chuckle and turned out their lights, kissed them lightly, and snuggled them down in their covers. I shut the door to begin my evening with my husband, which included a few TV shows and casual conversations about our day.
AND SCENE. You didn’t really think that was my day did you? If so, you haven’t scrolled down to read much else I’ve wrote yet. The above little fantasy world is what my idiotic brain thought marriage and having kids would be like. Yes, I knew kids were hard, marriage was work, but really, I thought, how hard could it be?
Fast forward to my real life. I have two children, a full time job with no sick days, only precious few “Paid Time Off” days that are rapidly dwindling to single digits and it’s only the beginning of April, and a husband that we are lucky to see every weekend, because the only job he could find that didn’t pay minimum wage and involve a spatula was located on the east coast. 500 milez away.
What kind of idealistic weirdo was I to think I could live this charmed life? Besides, who lives this way anyways? Give me any parent and I’ll show you someone who would sell their souls to be given one lousy day where they get to do whatever they want. Where no one needs something from them, where no one hides from her brother under their shirt and then proceeds to tell said parent they have a big fat bootie. Where their kindergartener doesn’t act like the five minutes of homework he’s been given to do over spring break isn’t the equivalent of ripping his limbs off. Where no matter what they cook, they hear “THIS IS GROSS!” Even if it is the food they loved last week and were screaming for even though they knew you had ran out of it and hadn’t had time to get to the grocery store for more.
My life is actually quite charmed and I am very lucky, but screw that it’s a wonderful life bullshit and let’s get real. I’m in a mood. I’ve just spent two straight days with my children. Not the above mentioned joyful loving children – my actual children. And to make matters worse, both were in some stage of sickness since Saturday, which ups the normally whiny and bitchy quotient by 100. Ever get waken up by a sneeze? One that’s aimed directly at your face and showered on you at point blank range? I have. Ever get waken up by hearing, “QUIT WATCHING MY KINDLE, YOU HAVE YOUR OWN!” Moment of silence… then, “MOM! GRACE IS BREATHING ON ME AND WON’T MOVE!” This is then followed by a scream that gets louder as it screeches down the hallway to find you to tell you all about her brother just punched her? Check.
These have been my “vacation days” for the past three years. The first year Mark went back to work after his yearlong lay off, Gracie was 13 months and Will was 3, and I ran out of PTO by June. I took the rest of my days off unpaid and luckily didn’t get fired for taking a whopping 27 days off that year. The next year was better; I gained more time off for being there longer, had slightly less sickness and made it until October before I ran out of PTO days. Christmas shopping? HA! Done online, by a husband 500 miles away, or amidst the crazies on the weekend, squeezed in between parties and bake offs and general holiday “merriment.”
I know I am whining and people in third world countries are saying, “bitch please,” but really, we all know they aren’t reading this anyways, unless Oprah has given them a computer and internet access, so I can whine away to my first world parents who feel me.
I just never pictured life where a shower would be optional. I never thought my kids would want three freakin meals EVERY SINGLE DAY, prepared by me every time. Seriously, when I was growing up, food just magically appeared, and I was pissed because Mom called dinner every single night just as The Monkees was starting. To add to that annoyance, there was no pause button. You either watched it at 6 or you didn’t see it AT ALL. But I digress. This magical food every single night appeared in serving dishes (my kids think serving dishes are pots with potholders under them and a cooking stone topped with bagel pizza bites) and included, no kidding, a meat, a starch and a veggie, and oftentimes rolls or biscuits. Every. Single. Night. Like magic.
So I grew up thinking when I had kids, this magic fairy would show up at my house and cook, clean, and do the hard part of parenting. Stupid fairy never showed. Well unless my mom or mother-in-law shows up, then my house breathes a sigh of relief from being cleaned and the stove gets woken up by someone actually using it. But then, when they do show up, all I am free to do is attempt to sift through that paper mountain of filing that hasn’t been touched in 5 years or play find-the-throw up/poop/pee-smell. Or if I’m really lucky, I can sit down and watch TV…Backyardigans, Cat in the Hat (If I ever meet Martin Short, I am ripping his larynx out…Yes, your mother does MIND if you do!), or the original Benji…from 1974, with my kids. Or maybe I can go outside and watch them ride their bikes and yell in a panic every 5 seconds at the top of my lungs CAAARRRR!!!! Or maybe I can go downstairs and eat some fake food in the playroom and get bossed around about how I’m eating it wrong and not making appropriate yummy noises. Or maybe we can play legos, where within 5 minutes I am like, “Where is that freakin red piece the size of an atom?!”
Then once the bedtime routine is over and silence finally descends on the house, I have dishes, cat litter, and laundry among other things giving me dirty looks. Sometimes I do it, begrudgingly and half-assed, all while promising myself I’ll deep clean “later.” Sometimes I say Fuck IT and sit down to read a book or catch up on actual enjoyable adult TV, only to be interrupted by a 14 year old cat who steps on my face like, “What the fuck woman? Remember me? The one who can tell all your drunk college stories AND your most recent sexcapades? Yeah, well, it’s time for some kitty loving. And don’t mind my snotty nose, I’ll just wipe it all over your shirt.”
So then at this point – it’s 11:00. Time to give up, fall asleep in my contacts and makeup, only to hit the snooze to start it all over again at 5:30 the next day and tick the days off until my husband can join me for our fun-filled, family-time weekends, which include dragging our asses out of bed at 7 (if we are lucky) and making those two days not only productive and efficient, but also the best freakin 2 days our kids’ lives, all to alleviate some of that mommy and daddy guilt that plagues us during the week.
Thanks. I feel better. Feel my pain people! Help me to know I’m not alone.
PS – Now I’ll go watch my kids sleep like angels and fall in love with them all over again…or at least enough to start fresh tomorrow… or tackle the midnight fever or vomiting episode.
One quick, funny, slightly mortifying story, and then this PMSy, tired mother is going to bed.
Like I’ve mentioned, Mark has been doing this new job for over a month now and we are getting a rhythm down, a routine established to help give some structure for our kids and for our weekends. Therefore, weekends include a “quiet time,” which because they are 4 and 6, is rapidly becoming non-essential, and us parents are the ones who need some quiet time mid-afternoon on Saturdays and Sundays, not our dear offspring.
And it’s worth reiterating, we don’t see each other at all during the week, hence we relish our alone time. So, we put them in their rooms, shut the doors and tell them to play quietly until we come to tell them it’s ok to wake up. Most of the time, this works and due to their rooms being the only electronic-free rooms in our house, they usually fall asleep out of “boredom” surrounded by actual toys. Well, we were going to find out they don’t always go to sleep.
I think we both intended to lay in our bed, do some snuggle bunnying and then grab a quick snooze in the quiet moments. Well, thanks to ending a really good, really smutty book series earlier that morning (He fixes pancakes, I read. Totally fair.) and the fact that my husband is a guy and I’ve never not seen any guy horny, let alone this one whom I’ve agreed to love, cherish and snog til death due us part – snuggling led to some very heavy petting. All under the covers, but a little ardent with maybe a dirty limerick or two being exchanged in the heat of the moment. Well, apparently we got a little too consumed and did not hear our son’s door open, nor did we hear the footsteps pad up the hallway. So into it we were (yes with the door open), we were not interrupted until we heard, “When you guys are done fooling around, can naptime be over?” We look up to see our son standing calmly in the doorway asking a very prudent question.
Gasp. Shrivel. Panic.
“Uh, in a little bit buddy. Mkay?”
Ga! Forget college. We have a therapy fund already started, but really then maybe not, he really didn’t seem all that bothered – but then he could be repressing the whole thing and will be waking up in cold sweats at 16 wondering why rhyming anatomy words creep him out.
True story. OK – maybe our dirty talk doesn’t rhyme, but go with me on this one.
PS – Check me out on Goodreads, where you can find all the books I allude to. <—-
I love my kids. I love my husband. With all my heart. HOWEVER, at this moment, I want them to all GO AWAY.
First, I just Febrezed my husband’s shorts and the couch he was polluting with his ass. While he was laying on said couch in said shorts. I say, I am getting the odor at its source. He complains it’s cold. Whiner.
Second, my 6YO’s meds are off. We are in the process of finding the right dosage level, and I am supposed to be patient while we are doing this. Patience is not one of my strong suits. I am pretty sure the pharmacist at Rite Aid is a sick sadist and gave us placebo sugar pills instead of ADHD medication, because this kid is off the charts lately. He hasn’t held still or stopped making noise since he woke up this morning. It’s like the Energizer Bunny on steroids. As a disclaimer, I have been anti-medicating kids since Day 1 and fought for YEARS to put him on a controlled substance for his ADHD and sensory issues. We went everywhere, tried everything, and tested tested tested. The only saving grace has been this medicine. At first, it was like a miracle. He was still my boy, personality, appetite and energy intact, it was just less insane. I am not calling him crazy, but sometimes his mind would go so fast and his body would totally spaz, it was hard to watch him get lost in his own body. This medicine seemed to help him keep up with himself. But now, whether he has grown a tolerance for it or because he is growing like a weed, it has started to lose its effectiveness. He’s become the scapegoat in school again – the one all the other kids blame when things go bad. 95% of the time, he is actually the culprit, but the other 5% of the time, he gets blamed because it’s easy to believe he was the instigator.
The thing I love about my boy is he’s a lover. He wants to entertain, to be loved, to make people laugh. Gosh, not sure where he’d get that from eh? He’s just a bit more boisterous than I ever was. With his meds off again, we seem to be back to square one and seem to have lost all the momentum we have gained. The inner struggle Mark and I go through is endless. Is he truly not in control of himself or is this a 6YO testing his boundaries? Do we punish? Do we seek other treatment? Do we blame the disorder or make him take responsiblity for his own actions? We try to maintain a balance of being responsible for his own actions and treating his behavioral problems.
Like I said, my patience level is not at its peak at the moment. At this point, at 7:30 on a Sunday night, I am all for pumping him full of Valium just so I can think clearly for two seconds without having to answer why the lights blur when he squints his eyes, how to find home on Google maps, all while dodging Nerf darts that him, his dad and sister are currently battling each other with. But that’s wrong, I know this.
Next, my daughter is in a stage that has geniusly been termed the Fucking Fours. Ahh, the age of 4. Still adorable, getting smarter by the second, but yet still incapable of finding her hat and coat, which is always in the same place – on the floor where she left it. The most dramatic person I’ve ever met. Today, I put my arms on her shoulders and gently (seriously) moved her aside as I walked by her in the hallway. She proceeded to execute the most dramatic fake fall I have ever seen. Academy Awards (ahem Oscars, sorry rebranded, forgot) have been won for less acting. As she looks dramatically over her fallen shoulder up from the ground at me, she exclaims MOM! Why did you push me? SOB! Good Lord child.
I should write a book just on the insane stuff that comes out of her mouth. I am truly terrified and can honestly not look her preschool teachers in the eye for fear of what she has told them about her homelife. Today, she told my husband to quit being a pain in the ass, which to be fair, he is, but I wish she wouldn’t pick up everything I yell at him in the car. I thought you were watching that movie?? I didn’t spend 30K on a car so you could LISTEN to our front seat conversations! Next car, a limo with a dividing window, or maybe a police squad car, which would at least prevent the projectiles from coming my way, but wouldn’t quite mute the sound, unless we got that plastic divider thing you see in some COPS episodes. OK, I am giving this waaay too much thought. Then, she also tells us we have to kiss her like we’re married, which is her tilting her head to one side and shaking her head back and forth, so as to get continuous movement while kissing. Nice huh? What kind of princess porn am I letting her watch? Where is she getting this stuff?
Also, her most favorite daily accomplishment? The one she yells to me with unabashed pride at the end of school, in restaurants or at Grandma’s house? MOM! I didn’t poop my pants today! G! That is so exciting! I am glad I have set the bar so high for my youngest!!! I don’t need her to start reading, know her colors, I just need her not to poop in her pants. Mensa here we come.
And finally, my traveling husband. We are a month into this new job and five days before my period, therefore, I am ready for him to go back to where he’s working. I let him drive this morning and since I am sorely out of practice with being a passenger, I could not help the backseat driving that comes ripping from my mouth. But to be fair to ME, he does pull too far forward in a driveway and does appear to be hanging out in the street, he DID almost hit that guy in the Costco parking lot because he was so concerned with saving my bottle of wine rolling around in the backseat, and he really didn’t see that car coming from his right (which, I was closer to, therefore, was simply helping him out). This resulted in an angry chinese fire drill in a very busy Costco parking lot, when he REFUSED to drive with me any longer and told me I am driving. Really Mark? Aren’t we overreacting just a tad? Now I know where G gets her dramatic side from. Yeesh.
Then he takes us to dinner at Olive Garden. OK OK, I admit I have super simple taste, but I LOVE me some Olive Garden. He then FORCES me to get dessert. Bastard. Problem is, he wants to share. JENNY DOESN’T SHARE FOOD!!! We get the chocolate cake, which has four layers of awesomeness, and where does he start? The back! The best freakin part! He’s totally cheating! He is stealing the essence of the dessert while I am dutifully starting at the tip and working my way up to the delicious finale. GOD!
Needless to say, I need a break. But, it’s Sunday, I have papers to sign, lunches to pack, a husband who needs to catch a 6 AM flight, and a week to prepare for Easter, so no rest for the weary. Although, I guess I could watch just one episode of Parks And Recreation before I start right?
My husband just accepted a job which will put him back on the road during the week. For those of you who know us, this is something with which we are familiar. His last job kept him on the road and home every other weekend. It was awful. At the start of the job, we had a 3 and a 1 year old. This lovely period lasted 2 ½ years before he was let go last August.
Now, we start another job with a better company that will bring him home on the weekends. The kids are now 4 and 6, so a bit more manageable on my end. Well, I hope.
Therefore, in an attempt to make myself feel better, I thought I’d make myself a pros and cons list of a traveling husband.
PRO – The bed all to myself (well, along with my long-suffering cat, Ezra, who by the way will be thrilled to have me all to herself again). No loud snoring. No pokes in the back at 11:30 going, “Just real quick???” I would say no bed hogging or cover stealing, but for this transgression, I am the sole perpetrator, therefore placing it on his pros list and not mine. Also, no more hearing, “Why do you have so many freakin covers? I am roasting!” And best of all, no more dutch ovens, you know, the kind that linger, and permeate the sheets.
CON – The bed all to myself. No getting to elbow him when a kid starts coughing and saying, “I got it last time,” even though he totally doesn’t know there was no last time. No one to scare the bejesus out of in the middle of the night by slapping him awake when I hear something crash. “Mark!!! Wake up! Someone is trying to break in, go out there and use your superhero ninja powers to fight them off! I’ll be right behind you with my blow dryer….What? It was just the shower caddy falling off the wall? Oh sorry.”
PRO – No more coming home to such non-diet friendly dinners such as super nachos, hot dogs, burgers, pizza and so on.
CON – No more coming home to such non-diet friendly dinners such as super nachos, hot dogs, burgers, pizza and so on. Now I have to cook my own crap and for the kids too, all in a 15 minute window.
PRO – I can work out every night after the kids go to bed. No reserving my energy for other late night cardiovascular activities. I can work out, shower, and go to sleep.
CON – I can work out every night after the kids go to bed. No reserving my energy for other late night cardiovascular activities. My husband has some SKILZ, which will have to wait until the weekend. (At this point, my family is throwing up in their mouth a little, but hey, what can I say? I don’t have a smut addiction for nothing.)
PRO – I have complete control over my household once again. No one to forget to tell the daycare and/or school something or pack the wrong thing in their lunches. No more forgotten paperwork. No gym shorts on the floor or chip crumbs in front of the TV (after a particularly stressful night of Black Ops). No more doing the laundry or loading the dishwasher wrong.
CON – I am the only one in charge of my household again. I have to do all the above mentioned annoying things ALONE. He might forget some stuff or do it wrong, but at least someone was doing it.
PRO – No more smell of Red Hot. Dude puts that crap on everything. It’s disgusting. Singes the nostrils.
CON – No con, that shit is gross.
PRO – The bathroom gets more “open” time. We were dumb enough to buy a house with one friggin bathroom and this man goes more than anyone I know. He eats, he poops. Every. Single. Time. For like a half hour each time. If I see him with a phone, kindle or laptop heading down the hallway, I know I am on my own for the next hour or so. No more asking the kids to hold out just a bit longer, he’ll be out soon. Once, Will knocked on the door and said, ‘’Dad could you not play your games this time? I really have to go!” All parents hide in the bathroom, but my dear husband does it at least six times a day.
CON – No con, it will be nice to have a semi-available bathroom again. He can decimate the hotel toilets during the week. I will get to go back to my absolutely-no-privacy, 2 kid hug party while I am taking care of business.
So, there you have it, my started list of pros and cons. This did make me feel a bit better, however, I am sure the cons list will grow longer when he actually leaves. I might try to talk my husband to do a guest post, where maybe he can give an honest pros/cons list to traveling.