Tuesday, June 30, 2009


We had a rocky start you and I.

Of all the life changing events that have happened to me; death of a loved one, moving, changing jobs, divorce - none of them altered me so thoroughly as the birth of my first child.

I once described the way I felt after having a baby as feeling like I was in one of those fun houses with all the crazy mirrors everywhere and I wasn't sure which one was actually me. In one fell swoop I went from being a person who identified herself by her mate, her job, her age, to being utterly rudderless in an unfamiliar sea of emotions and responsibilities and (literally) constant wakefulness. I was no longer sure who I was.

I tried reaching out to a few people who might be able to help me and felt even further isolated because it seemed the way I felt wasn't the experience they had. Some women seem to take to motherhood like ducks to water. I was sure I was one of those women. I had been waiting for this baby most of my life. So the fact that I didn't only added to my feelings of desperation.

I know now that my experience was not all that uncommon.

But just like forging metal, our trial by fire made our bond that much stronger.

Happy Birthday Sabrina Beena!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Thursday, June 18, 2009

We're Off To See The Wizard

We are leaving early tomorrow morning for Myrtle Beach.

I am armed with:
  • a portable DVD player
  • three - count 'em, THREE iPods
  • a Nintendo DS
  • snacks
  • doodle pads
  • books
  • more Wiggles CD's than my sanity can withstand
  • and most importantly a prescription for Xanax.
I have no idea if we will have wireless there, so you may or may not hear from me.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

I'll Give You Thirty Xanax If You Promise To Leave The Building Now

We're leaving for Myrtle Beach on Friday. I can't wait to be there. It's the getting there I'm not real thrilled about. Two days, locked in a car with a seven, five and two year old is enough to drive anyone over the edge. Last year we didn't even get out of Pittsburgh before someone was whining they were hungry and bored.

Just to make things a little more exciting this year, Sabrina has developed something called Daytime Urinary Frequency Syndrome. I'm not making this up. God knows I wish I was. It's pretty self-explanatory. Basically it means she feels the need to use the bathroom 30-40 times a day, sometimes as often as every 10 minutes. And it's more intense when she's in the car.

I've also developed anxiety attacks while riding or driving on a highway.

Two day car trip. Frequent Urination. Toddler. Panic attacks. Yeah. Good times.

So today was my appointment to see the doctor to discuss the upcoming trip in hopes of some chemical assistance. I'm not sure why I thought it was a good idea to make the appointment for a Tuesday afternoon right in the middle of nap time, when I had no hope of a babysitter. I've taken all three of them out before, but for my sanity and the benefit of all mankind, I try really hard not to loose the Triumvirate of Terror on humanity. But no choice today, so along they went.

It went well at first. My Doctor has a small children's area in her waiting room with an activity table and two shelves of books. This seemed to do the trick until Meredith announced, "I pooped."

Why oh why, would a doctor's office provide a children's area, but no available changing table in the bathroom? I was called back to the examining room about when I made this discovery, so I figured, "fine, I'll change her on the examining table." Except in an unusual turn of events, the doctor appeared to see me promptly. Alright, other than a suspicious fragrance wafting from Meredith's general vicinity, things were still under control. The children were mostly quiet and well-behaved, charmed by my uncharacteristic willingness to allow them to touch my iPod.

As I sat discussing my anxiety and stress levels and the possibility of a prescription, Meredith quietly walked up to me and reminded me gently that she pooped. I turned to acknowledge her statement.

She brought me evidence.

On her thumb.

Which was now grasping my shirt.

Luckily my doctor possesses both a sense of humor and two children of her own.

She immediately sat down and wrote a prescription; there was no further proof of my need for drugs required.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Excuse Me I Have To Get The Phone. LORD STANLEY IS CALLING!

In the eternal words of Howard Cosell, "When you play Pittsburgh, you play the whole city."

And Pittsburgh played well tonight.

Congratulations Pittsburgh Penguins, Stanley Cup Champions!

Monday, June 8, 2009

When Life Hands You Lemons, Go Find Someone Whose Life Has Handed Them Vodka

The three ring circus that is my life has been particularly chaotic lately in ways both good and bad.

My friend Melissa left today to return to her home in England. It was a whirlwind week filled with laughter, family, love, laughter, way too much food, and a little more laughter. Wine was drunk, knees were scraped, birthday candles were lit and blown out, Ollie's 90th birthday was celebrated with gusto. I will miss seeing Melissa daily and the ability to simply make a local call and talk as long as we like. But on the other hand, the laundry and dishes are piling up around my ears and it will be good to get back to our regular routine. After all, it feels weird when my kids aren't sniping at each other and complaining of one or the other committing the unspeakable act of BREATHING on the other.

At the same time a nastier problem was brewing. Dave alerted me to a small lump on his inner upper arm on Monday night. Since he also had a smallish abrasion on his elbow that appeared to be infected, I was fairly certain it was a swollen lymph node responding to the infected elbow. Dave seems to be one of the few people I know who actually likes Emergency Rooms, so I had to talk him down and remind him he had a regularly scheduled appointment with the General Practitioner the next day and since his arm showed no signs of falling off at that very moment, it was probably safe to wait until tomorrow afternoon.

I forgot to take into account the general incompetence of the Nurse Practitioner that usually sees Dave at his appointments.

Dave and I used to see the same G.P. until Nurse Ratched showed up on the scene. She regularly insulted, patronized, and belittled me at every turn until I had had enough abuse hurled upon me, and sought out a new doctor. The first time we met, she simultaneously hurt my son's feelings and insulted me when she walked in and two-year-old Jamie, being as good as gold sitting nicely on a chair reading a book, looked up and greeted her with a polite "Hi!" She replied, "Tell your Mommy you need a haircut."

She once told me she'd "humor me" when I requested she do a throat culture on the painfully sore throat I had had for three weeks. You know, I don't normally pray for Strep Throat, but in that instance I offered up a Hail Mary for a positive result just to take her down a notch or two.

The final straw for me was when Dave waltzed in to see her with a sniffle or two and waltzed back out with a full course of antibiotics that of course will do diddly-squat for that cold virus he had. When I went to see her a few weeks later with every color of the rainbow coming out of my nose, and a sinus cavity that threatened to explode right then and there all over the examining room, having had said symptoms for close to a month, she coldly informed me I had a virus and she doesn't prescribe antibiotics for viruses. When I expressed that I agree wholeheartedly, and I've never once before requested an antibiotic until I had reached near-death-by-Ebola-sinuses, she actually sniggered at me. I'm pretty sure that's the first time I saw someone snigger.

So I should not have been surprised by her dismissal of Dave's arm. But since she previously generally dispensed medication like candies any time Dave walked in, I was shocked when she stated, without even touching said arm, "That's not an infection. There aren't any lymph nodes in that part of the arm. You have a cyst. We don't treat that here."

By yesterday, Dave's arm was swollen, red and hot to the touch. This time when he expressed a desire to visit the Emergency Room, I was all in favor. He was admitted last night for I.V. antibiotics to treat a severe infection. According to the Infectious Disease Control Doctor, most likely introduced by the small abrasion on his elbow causing the lymph node to swell. You know, the ones that don't exist according to Nurse Wretched, or Ratched.

But you can just call her Stupid for short.