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Wearing My Heart On His Sleeve

August 21, 2013

I am not an overprotective parent. Nor have I ever been accused of being a warm and fuzzy parent. Don’t get me wrong, I adore my children. I hug them and kiss them daily and make sure they know they are loved. But I’m also just as prone to teasing them mercilessly, yelling at them to clean their rooms, and laughing at them at somewhat inappropriate times.

As an example, a while back Monkey fell off her bike and banged up her knee and elbow pretty badly. She came running in the house hysterical and bleeding. She threw such a fit while I was trying to clean and bandage her wounds that I couldn’t stop laughing and almost peed my pants. It was hilarious. Not her injuries, but her overly dramatic reaction to them. I fixed her up, told her to chillax and sent her back outside to play. I didn’t kiss her boo boo to make it better. I don’t do that shit.

However, every once in a while something creeps up on me and takes me by surprise. I think it’s called sensitivity.

A few days ago Milo was knocked to the ground as the result of a freak accident while playing with his cousin. He got right back up, cried a little bit, brushed himself off and went back to playing.

But something seemed off, so I took him to the doctor to get checked out. I honestly thought they would tell me he was fine and I secretly chastised myself for being a worry wart. So when the doctor told me he had broken his left clavicle, I was shocked. I instantly burst into tears and started going through all the “what if” scenarios.

What if I was watching him more closely? What if I could have prevented the accident? What if I had brought him to the doctor sooner? What if I wrap him in bubble wrap for the rest of his life? These were all questions going through my head.

And as I kneeled down on the floor of the exam room to give him a hug, Milo had the answer, “Ow Mommy! You squeeze me too tight.”

Portrait of a Marriage

August 9, 2013

Last week was my wedding anniversary. 6 years.

That may not sound like a long time, but it’s as long as I’ve ever been married, so…
And we’re very happy, so it looks like we’ll be setting more personal records in the years to come. 🙂

Anyway, a friend of mine saw my Facebook post, wishing Brent a Happy Anniversary and asked why I didn’t post a wedding pic—you know, like everyone else does?

She’s a new-ish friend, so I had to explain to her…I don’t have any wedding photos. At least not the kind she was thinking—big white dress, tuxedo, flowers, cake etc.

What I do have is this:

IMG_0077_2

That is a photo of Judge Tobias (the man who married us) taken with my iPhone just after the ceremony.

Sometimes it makes me sad that I don’t have any fluffy white dress photos with Brent. I would have loved to have a big, beautiful wedding with him. But that’s not our style and I know from experience that a wedding does not make a marriage.

So, I have my memories of Judge Tobias, and this selfie we took when we got home from the courthouse,

DSC_0109

and the words of my late Nana who kept this photo in a frame near her bed.

She said, “Look at your faces. That’s the most beautiful wedding picture I’ve ever seen.”

Do You Know What I Mean?

July 26, 2013

Did you know I have a real job that pays me money? Yeah, unfortunately I don’t get paid to wax poetic on this blog.

But anyway, I do search engine marketing and a large part of my job is to write optimized content for web sites. This may sound boring, and it is. But I’m kind of good at it, so…

Recently I was doing some work for a multifamily management company, working on a website for an apartment community when I stumbled upon this gem stuck in the middle of the website’s fine print:

Variations may occur in some floor plans. Dimensions and square footages are approximate. Rents subject to change. Models do not reflect racial preference. Equal Housing Opportunity.

MODELS DO NOT REFLECT RACIAL PREFERENCE

So are they saying they don’t prefer this lovely African American women from their home page?AfricanAmerican

Or this cute Hispanic/Latino couple from their photo gallery?

Hispanic_Latino

Or this adorable Asian mother and son, also from the photo gallery?

Asian

OK. I know what they are really trying to say, I’m just twisting their words. It’s so easy to do.

BTW—these are all stock photos.

Management companies are notorious for demanding an ethnically diverse portfolio of photographs for their websites and other marketing materials in order to promote their compliance with the Fair Housing Act. But I have never before seen a statement such as the one above.

In an attempt to cover their asses from complaints and potential lawsuits, they have left a poorly worded statement open to interpretation.

Fail.

Not The Only Lonely

July 24, 2013

Lately, I’ve been feeling down. I think it started in April and back then I attributed it to a post traumatic stress reaction to the adoption. And though the adoption itself was not traumatic at all, sometimes the mere anticipation of anxiety is enough to get to me.

But this feeling…this down in the dumps feeling, has persisted. It’s not constant, nor is it everyday. It’s just here sometimes and I’m keenly aware of it.

And then the other day I was having lunch with a friend (a tall, blonde drink of water who I won’t name), when I had what Oprah calls an “Aha! Moment”. My friend, who I admire greatly and whose life mirrors mine in particular ways, said that she was lonely.

Aha!

Loneliness.

That was the feeling. It had just never occurred to me, because I am quite literally never alone. Even now it seems wrong to me.

How can someone so busy with friends and clubs and classes and work and family be lonely?
And how can my lovely friend, who is busy in her own life, feel the same way?

I don’t have an answer. But I feel better knowing I’m not the only one.

Maybe I’m not lonely after all. 🙂

Disc Jockey

July 11, 2013

With the exception of an unfortunate incident with a douchebag some years back, I’ve never sustained a serious injury. Until recently, that is.

I take a boot camp class (or rather, I used to take a boot camp class, because I doubt I’ll be returning to it anytime soon). Anyway, it’s the kind of class where they push you to your  brink with all sorts of physical challenges, all the while yelling in your face and making you feel like a wimp. And I love it. I’ve been doing it for over a year. It’s given me a level of fitness I’ve never had before.

About a month ago, after doing some heavy dead lifts in class, I woke up and my back was SCREWED. At first I thought it was a pulled muscle, but when it wasn’t better after four weeks (in fact it had gotten worse), I finally went to my doctor.

She quickly sent me to a spine specialist who did a x-ray, a MRI, gave me a shot of Toradol in the ass and sent me on to physical therapy with a prescription for Vicodin and a muscle relaxer.

My x-ray looked good—no fractures, everything in alignment etc. But the spine doc is pretty confident that I have a “disc issue”. That’s what he said, “a disc issue”. I’m not entirely sure what that means, but I’ll find out the results of my MRI next week.

In the meantime I’m going to physical therapy where they have me doing pelvic thrusts and leg lifts a la Jane Fonda circa 1982.

Thank God for Vicodin.

Rebirth

April 9, 2013

Something wonderful has happened. Something we’ve been waiting for…

Brent adopted my Monkey.  Legally.

She’s considered him her Dad for years, but we always had these little things (school records, passport applications, that pesky last name) that would pop up to remind us that he wasn’t.  Not quite anyway.

While this is something we’ve wanted for a long time, we didn’t start the process until last year.  Timing is everything, especially with a legal maneuver of this magnitude. And the timing was finally right.

The paperwork itself took about nine months to complete and then we waited nearly three months for a court hearing.

As with any gestation of a baby (my 11-year-old baby), there was a lot of emotionality that came with this period of time as well.

Leading up to our hearing date, I was a basket case—sobbing at the drop of a hat, having anxious dreams, even nesting to some degree.

And Monkey became extra fidgety as well. I could tell she was nervous, waiting.

But when the day finally arrived, we were ready.

The whole family gathered in the courtroom; there was a lot of anticipation.

And just like the moment of her actual birth, when the judge announced, “Congratulations!  You’re a family,” there was an audible gasp of joy; mom, dad and baby simultaneously cried, and then we held our daughter.

Mug Shot

March 25, 2013

Mug
I bought this chalkboard mug for Brent as a stocking stuffer last year and it immediately became his new fave.

I have to admit I bought it solely for selfish purposes.  I saw it and thought, “Won’t I be such a good wife writing daily sweet nothings, I love you’s, world’s greatest husband blah blah blah?”

And it started out that way. Really, it did. An “I love you” here, a “you make me smile” there…

But it quickly evolved (devolved?) into sexual references, inappropriate song lyrics, naughty limericks and the occasional pornographic sketch.

Seriously.  Best wife. EVER.

Mission Accomplished

March 18, 2013

WashingtonMonument

After All, It’s A Small World

March 16, 2013

Last Friday night, Brent and I watched the Colorado Avalanche blow out the Chicago Blackhawks in an amazing streak-ending game.  The Avalanche were so awesome in fact, that they scored two of their six goals within about 30 seconds of each other, prompting me to accept a few celebratory high fives (much to Brent’s chagrin) from the gentleman whose season tickets happen to be next to ours.

Fast forward to this afternoon.

Brent and I decided to do some last minute D.C. sight seeing before catching our evening flight back to Denver.  We visited the Library of Congress and the Newseum (BTW–if you haven’t been, GO!), and decided to grab a quick bite to eat before heading to the airport.

We were sitting at the bar at The Capital Grille, enjoying beers and cobb salads, when a man sat in the bar stool next to mine.  It was Mr. High Five.  Yes it was!

He didn’t recognize me, but of course I had to say hello (making Brent cringe), because I’m that girl, the one who’ll talk to anyone.  Anyway, Mr. High Five and I reminisced about the game for a moment and then we left.

But crazy coincidence, right?  I mean, what are the odds?  Seriously, what are the odds?

I need a statistician.  Like, now.

The Bitch Is Back

March 14, 2013

It’s been about a year since I last posted on this blog.

I’m not entirely sure why I stopped writing.   I could blame it on a wicked case of writer’s block, but I’d be lying.  There are dozens of legitimate reasons I can give for it —my business really took off in 2012 and I got too busy, there are some pending legal actions I’m involved in and my attorney recommended I back off for a bit (more on this later) etc.

But the fact is, I just didn’t want to write anymore.

That sounds so strange to me now, because it’s against my nature.  A writer writes.  That’s just how it is.

So I’ve decided to stop fighting nature and start again, the way I did four years ago:

Today is my husband’s 41st birthday…and right now I am on a flight to Washington, D.C. I’ve been to D.C. before about 11 years ago, but I’m more excited about this trip because I get to rewrite history.  Well, my history at least.

When you go through a life altering event such as a divorce, you tend to start partitioning your memories into different stages of your life:  “during my first marriage,”  “after the divorce,” etc.

A little story…

During my first marriage (see how I did that?), just after Monkey was born, we took our first family vacation to Washington, D.C. to visit my in-laws who were living in Virginia at the time.  Overall it was a great trip.  We saw all the major monuments and museums and even got private tours of the White House and the Pentagon, which at the time was a big deal (less than one year after 9/11) thanks to my then brother-in-law pulling some strings.

However there is one memory that haunts me from that trip.

It was about five in the afternoon and we had been on a marathon site-seeing tour in 100 degree heat since early morning.  We picked up some sandwiches and decided to have a picnic on a bench near the Washington Monument.  

At this point our 6-month-old Monkey was hot, tired, hungry and losing her shit. I held her, trying to soothe her, walk with her, feed her, whatever.  My ex sat on the bench eating his sandwich, glaring at me and getting more and more pissed off with every passing minute.  Eventually she quieted down, but the damage had been done.  He was angry and frustrated—at the baby for crying and at me for not being able to calm her.  A large marital spat ensued right there in the shadow of the monument resulting in my sandwich being thrown on the ground and me pushing my baby away in her stroller.

And that’s my Washington Monument story.  It kind of sucks. And to this day every time I watch that scene from Forrest Gump where he and Jenny jump into the reflecting pool to find each other, it’s all I think about.

SO, on this trip to D.C. my wonderful husband and I will stand in front of the Washington Monument and kiss, thereby replacing the memory of my only visit to D.C. (during my first marriage) with the memory of my best trip to D.C.

It’s all about new beginnings.