Monday, July 29, 2013

My Bank Account Is Begging For Mercy!

   That time of year is here again, that time of year that rivals Christmas in the sheer massive amounts of money spent, but there is a lot less joy and goodwill towards man! It's time to start getting the kiddo set up for the new school year. My bank account gets all tearful just thinking about this time of year.
   School for my kiddo starts in September, so August is the crunch month for us; the time to get that extensive list of things needed; things like backpacks, pencils, glue, yada-yada-yada. All that good shit that adds up to massive amounts at the cash register and your debit card is screaming, "NO! Please, no more!" As it's magnetic strip gets worn to nothing during the mandatory shopping spree.
   Personally, I have never understood the supply list. My daughter had to bring 8 sticks of glue one year and I was all, "What the hell? Are they letting her eat that shit at snack time or something?" Over the years I have had to buy massive amounts glue, pencils, dry erase markers, paper, pens, erasers, various coloring supplies, notebooks, binders, subject dividers,  and Sharpies. I've gone and bought the things on this list and walked away with a wallet that was at least $80 lighter, just for the friggen' shit listed previously. Are you kidding me?
    Then we have new shoes, new clothes, and the new backpack to buy. And since my daughter is growing like a weed jacked up on Miracle Grow, nothing from the previous year fits. So I hit all the sales racks, and canvass all the outlet malls, and still wind-up spending massive amounts of money for clothes that will all get passed down to my niece by the end of the year, because this weed disguised as a child won't slow down the grown spurt.
    Then once school starts, there are all those damn fees. Fees? I thought public school was supposed to be free? Somehow, though, I end up having to pay for my daughter to get this, and receive that, and by the time I am done paying all this shit, my bank account is on red-alert and my e-mail box is full of low balance messages. I'm halfway wishing I could sell a kidney to cover this expense, but she has more years of school ahead of her than I have kidneys. So that plan is short-term at best. I'll leave my kidneys in peace.
   I haven't written anything in a while because my home has been filled with company, and one of the things that all of my company has been discussing with me is the first major back-to-school shop of the year. My nephew starts kindergarten this year, my niece is going into second grade, and my daughter is starting her first year in middle school, which is going to be fun, I can tell, because the school website just informed me that to get her schedule, I have to go up there and fill out some paperwork and pay a fee. A fee?! To get her schedule?! That is truly a what the f**k moment if there ever was one.
    Good luck to all of you who are getting those kiddos ready for school, and may the damage to your bank balances be minimal. (Yeah, right. We can dream though, we can dream.) 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

What The Hell Just Came Out Of My Mouth?

   You remember back when you were a kid and you just thought your parents where so lame? The garbage that came out of their mouths -- If all your friends jumped off a bridge, does that mean you would too? Obviously, duh. Of course we would've, that shit is awesome and we were all adrenaline junkies anyway. And when you were a parent, if you even thought of that mind-boggling possibility at all, you were never going to be like that. You would be cool, you would be bad-ass, and all of your kid's friends would envy your kid for having the most awesome parent in the world.
    And then you are a parent and reality hits. If your kid jumps off a bridge and survives -- they are gonna wish they had died when you get through with them. Can you say grounded for eternity? I sure can. I can also say sore bottom pretty well too. And no TV or video games. What the hell kind of cool mom am I, right?
    Also, if all your kid's friends like you? That means that they are over at your house all the damn time. Eating your food, watching your TV, and getting in your way. Some parents might like that, I guess, if they have fully turned the corner and landed in batshit crazy. I haven't got there yet, so I want other people's kids to be at other people's houses. As in, not at mine.
  Try this little phrase that came out of my mouth not too long ago, "I don't care if all of your friends have Facebook pages. When they get kidnapped by pedophiles and you don't, you'll thank me." Can you just imagine the level of preteen stink-eye I got for that little gem? The stink-eye level was epic. And I didn't just get stink-eye from the kiddo, I got stink-eye from the random people who heard me. You know, whenever you say something like that, you always end up being in hearing distance of the real crazies: the stick-up-my-ass  people that think you should bubble wrap your kids and let them believe that the world is nothing but sunshine and butterflies. I've never been that type of mother; I prefer preparedness and awareness to ignorance. Or maybe they just let their kids have a Facebook page? I don't care if they did, this is totally their choice, but my daughter isn't getting one. That's my choice. But I digress.
    The thing is, when you turn into a parent, sometimes that lame-ass crap that was dripping from your parents' mouths starts to make massive sense. Last night my daughter was standing with her head in the freezer because we had just gotten back from karate and she was hot. I allowed this for about two minutes, because she had just been doing a pretty physical activity, and it's July, so it's hot, and our apartment doesn't have air conditioning. But she started acting like she was putting down roots. I mean, the energy! Kids can never fully understand the horror that is the electric bill. So out of my mouth flies, "Close the door! We aren't trying to refrigerate the whole neighborhood here!" What. The. Hell. Did I just say that shit? I feel so old now. What the hell happened to me? 

Saturday, July 20, 2013

The Apple Doesn't Fall Far From The Tree

   I just had three days off in a row, and all I can say is that sleeping in is super nice. I love to sleep in. But like many parents, there was a time when sleeping in was just a long-past dream. My daughter wasn't born a preteen girl who is beginning to understand the joys of sleeping in. Once, my daughter was an I'm-never-gonna-let-you-sleep-again master. All I can say is that this does pass, but by the time is passes, you are dealing with the preteen/teenage mess that comes after this stage. Like many issues in parenting, you can't win for losing.
   But once, as I stated, she would not let me sleep in for the world. When she was a baby, she used to delight in waking me up by jamming her finger up my nose. Never failed. I would wake up at 3 a.m. and have to clean us both up because she had stuck her finger so far up my nose that my nose was bleeding. If her crib had not been a deathtrap.... But her crib was, so she had easy access to my nose. And the times she did manage to make my nose bleed, she would shriek with laughter.
   Worse than than the 3 a.m. nosebleeds would be the times she would wake up with a funky diaper. She couldn't do this until she was more mobile of course, but after she got that mobility, I often prayed that she would not pee in her sleep. Because when she woke up with a dirty diaper, she would wake me up by sitting on my head. With her dirty diaper right in my nose. The horror. The horror. 
Lotsa dead plastic eyes.
    Even after she was in kindergarten, the shenanigans continued. By that time, she had gotten her mother's measure a little bit. By that age, she knew not to come over pushing and pulling and whining in my ear. But she had her methods. Her favorite one involved her My Little Pony collections. She would line those ponies up all around me while I slept, and she would twist all of their heads so that they were staring straight at me. All those big fake plastic eyes.... Fake eyes in toys really freak me out for some reason. I don't like them. And she would wake me up by having all her little ponies watch me sleep with their fake plastic eyes.
   If you don't know, then let me warn you: kids are twisted. They are twisted, diabolical little troublemakers and they will get you. You may think you have a normal child, but eventually, the weirdness will show through. Of course, you love that little weirdo, but that doesn't change the fact that kids are strange cookies. And just in case you think those preteen years means that you can sleep in safely, just let me crush that dream right now.
   It's summer vacation here, so my daughter doesn't have to get up at the ass-crack of dawn. But I still have to wake up due to the fact that I like being employed. So I still have to go to bed early, and she doesn't, which means that when I woke up earlier tonight, I noticed that all of my toenails were black. Ink pen black to be precise. On top of black toenails, I had smiley faces drawn on all of my toes. So all I can say is this; if you too have a little angel-faced, sweet-eyed girl, I pray that you are not a heavy sleeper like I am. If so, prepare yourself.  

Thursday, July 18, 2013

I Am Not Ashamed (Don't Judge Me!!!) Of My Supernatural, Demonic Inspired Fears

   If you've been reading, you know that sometimes I tend to go off on weird paranormal tangents involving evil furbies and demonic checkstands and possessed furniture  and you may be wondering, do I really believe in this crap? Those who have known me since childhood are now frantically nodding their heads yes. Because I do. I mean, some of this stuff that I have written in the blog is somewhat jokey, although I am afraid of dolls. They have dead eyes; dead eyes that follow you around the room. Test it; you'll see. But I don't really think the furbies are summoning hell into unsuspecting victim's living rooms (hopefully not, yikes!)
   But I do believe that there are some strange things out there, and that we can't, and never will be able to, explain all of the weird things that happen. Not that I am ever gonna be the person paying some nut thousands of dollars to contact my dead, and I do believe that my dead are in heaven, but there is some really weird shit out there. And if you believe in heaven, and angels, then devils and demons tend to go hand-in-hand with that. I have never been possessed (Thank you, God!!!) but I do believe that there are people out there who have suffered and are currently suffering through this.
   So why do I torture myself with horror games and movies? Well, for one thing, nothing has ever scared me as much as the shit that I think up on my own, and I have had a very active imagination since childhood. And I have been plagued by horrible, realistic nightmares ever since I can remember, before I was even allowed to peek at something scary. And not watching a movie doesn't change some of the things that I have seen with my own eyes. So movies and such don't bother me. Well, no, they scare me, but it's not like fear would be absent if I gave them up. And they aren't real, which is a comfort, because I freaked out during the first Paranormal Activity when that girl got pulled out of her bed and dragged down the hall. And that's my quality time with my sister. Not giving that up. Scary movie nights will continue until one of us is dead.
    But I have been scared of the dark since birth. I am the older sister, but I used to get in my little sister's bed every single night because I was scared. She has never let me forget. She even reminded me, this very week, that I used to get in bed with her even though she was constantly peeing the bed. What can I say? Pee is nothing compared to what might be lurking in the dark. And my parents were not big on nightlights, and for me, nightlights aren't enough. I keep the hall light on at night. Even now, at 31. My daughter appreciates me. And  I don't even care if she comes to crawl into bed with me because something spooked her. I understand! Come on, get in my bed! (She almost never does.)
My own way includes rosaries, which  I love. 
    That's not to say that I believe everything that I hear. Some people are nuts, and don't come at me speaking in tongues and expect that  I won't smack you. Get your crazy ass away from me; if you aren't crazy, then I don't want you next to me even more. Keep your demons to yourself! I am not a freaking priest; wrong gender entirely. I guess there are some denominations that allow female preachers, but even though I don't really follow organized religion (I like to believe in my own home, in my own way), I was raised Catholic, and  I just don't know much about other denominations, or other religions, Christian or not. Regardless, there is some freaky shit out there, and don't come up next to me possessed with something; I am not the one to expel that shit. Get away from me.
    The list of things that  I am afraid of is long and extensive, including the dark, mirrors, clowns, rats, demons, ghosts, evil ax murderers, dolls, and everything in between (strangely, spiders and snakes do not bother me). Of course, you can't live your life huddled in the corner because some things scare you, and I don't. What I do is that I regularly acknowledge my fears and make fun of myself for being such a fraidy-cat wuss. And that's were all those posts come in. I mock my fears openly and publicly. It's hard to be afraid when you are laughing, and so I laugh a lot. And I refuse to be ashamed of my fears, because actually, I think that some of them are founded. I've seen weird, scary things. And if you go into a room filled with people, and start talking about hauntings or other supernatural things, you usually find that almost everybody has a story. And the person who doesn't have a story is usually (stressing usually here, people, which means not always) the uptight, straight-laced, I-believe-in-nothing (and I am not talking religion here) person, and then you kinda have to wonder: if they weren't wearing their asses as hats, would they have a story? I'm sure that it's hard to see anything, supernatural or not, with your head jammed in places that heads just weren't meant to go.  There are freaky, scary, supernatural things out there. So why should I be ashamed of being scared of them?

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Can I Get A Big Yeehaw?

   There was a time, long ago, when I was terrified of speaking over an intercom. I didn't like intercoms, I still don't care for the sound of my voice over speakers, and a mistake was mortifying. However, this is a fear that I had to confront and overcome early in my working life. Once upon a time, before the birth of my daughter, back when  I thought that I would never have kids, I worked at a bar & grill. A bar & grill in the South, that catered to rednecks. 
    I had started out as a waitress, but being a waitress takes a certain personality and skill set, and I am lacking those. I hated waitressing, and eventually I moved from waitress to hostess. Back then, I was painfully unsure of myself, and seating people was better than serving them, but the hostess had one job that I was terrified of. 
   You've all witnessed the singing of happy birthday to people who come to any restaurant, I'm sure. They all have some way of recognizing people choosing their establishment to celebrate. The bar & grill that I worked at, if you will remember, catered to rednecks, so they figured that rednecks would not be impressed by the singing of happy birthday. So what they did, was the hostess would get on the intercom, and the hostess had a speech that went like this: "Listen up, ya'll! (Insert name) is celebrating her/her birthday today! On the count of three, I want to get a great big YEEHAW from ya'll to help them celebrate!" And then the hostess would count to three and the whole bar would bellow, "YEEHAW!!" at the top of their lungs. 
   And inevitably, my time came when I had to preform this dreaded service. I was really a mouse back then, so I barely squeaked out the message, and the ensuing yeehaw was pathetic. The thing about rednecks: if they are expecting something to be big and loud, and they are disappointed, they will make you do it again. I was mortified, but I had a bunch of dudes calling to me, "C'mon, sweetheart, we gotta do that again!" and various forms of heckling, that never got mean, but was insistent. I was very kindly, yet aggressively forced to get on that intercom, and repeat the entire process. Which I did as loud as I could, because even worse than being on the intercom is being forced to get people to yeehaw all damn night, and I wanted to be done with the process. 
    However, this incident did take some of the crippling stage fright that  I used to suffer away. It's kinda hard to be worried about getting on the intercom at work now. A spill? No problem calling for maintenance over the intercom. Way better than getting your whole customer base to shout yeehaw at you. Also, this experience vastly helped me when  I had to do my speech class in college, which is one of the classes that I went to campus for. While giving speeches to a class full of nervous students who were predisposed to feeling sympathetic for me was not such a problem. Of course,  I was still nervous, but not matter what happened, I wasn't going to have to get on an intercom and act a fool. And I was lucky, because none of those customers in that bar & grill were being mean to me. They understood that I was shy, but they were gonna have their chance to holler YEEHAW as loudly as possible; in the long run, this was a helpful experience, because I just don't care about intercoms anymore. They have lost all power to frighten me. 

Tuesday, July 16, 2013


   Today, I have been thinking about the past. Of course, if you have all been reading, you know that my daughter got her shots. The final count of shots was five, by the way. They just kept adding up. But she is doing well, and we got through the first visit with her doctor, and I think that I am really going to like him. I didn't like the last one, which was one that I kinda had to go with, because when we first came up here, I had no job, no GED, and was starting my life over, so I needed state help, which meant state medical for my daughter, and you don't get a choice of doctors. At least, not like you do with regular insurance, which is what I have now thanks to a good job.
    And that has been what I have been thinking about: how different things are now for me and my daughter. Once we were really, really poor. We lived in a one room shack with a tin roof and rotted floors, filled with eight people, on land that had been used to bury trailers. Why did people bury trailers? I don't know, but when I planted my vegetable garden, because I needed more food to feed everyone than my meager salary could buy, I kept digging up weird shit. It's kinda scary that we ate stuff that was planted in that, but you don't think of that kind of stuff when you are desperate.
  When my daughter was born, she didn't come home to a nursery full of new baby furniture or even cherished hand-me-downs. The crib that I had for her was a wreck, and it was missing screws and the wood was splintered so that new screws would just fall out, so I had it rigged together with a wire coat hanger, and this crib is the reason that my daughter shared a bed with me. I was grateful for a lot of the things that we were given, because many of them were good and we really needed them, but why someone gave us this crib, I don't know. I was scared to put her in that coat-hanger crib, so she slept with me. My bed was a busted futon that had the shape of a U, but was much safer than that crib. Eventually, when she was older, someone gave us a toddler bed, but by then she was used to sleeping with me, and that is a hard habit to break a kid out of. (Of course, at eleven, she does not sleep with me still.)
   Cooking was another thing that was hard. In college, when I actually went to a campus and not online, like I eventually switched to, I had someone tell me that people in America don't know what poor is, and that all poor people have microwaves and enough food, and while I do not dispute the fact that I would rather be poor in America than in a third-world country, I want to know how many of you have seen the homeless walking around with a microwave strapped to their backs? I fail to see that. I am not saying that I was that bad off, because I wasn't, but I am just pointing that out. There are plenty of people in America that don't get enough to eat and don't have things like microwaves and TVs and the like. I can take you down to Seattle and show you so many homeless people that the local homeless shelters can't take them all in, and I can also show you that quite a few of them are kids. But I digress...
   We did have a microwave, donated by a generous person, because we did not have a stove. We had a microwave and a two-burner hot plate, and while I was grateful for this, try cooking for eight people with nothing but a microwave and a hot plate on a daily basis. It sucks.
    I was thinking about all of this, because I am grateful that I have so much now. I have been off of all state programs for a year. Food stamps and medical I have been off of for several years, but until recently I did receive state help to pay for child care. But now  I don't get that, and the biggest feeling: relief. I feel like I can take a deep breath and not be ashamed. I never wanted to be on any of those programs, and being on those programs is so hard, because every one assumes that you are abusing the system. I'm really happy to be off of them! The stigma was really hard to deal with.
   I also have my own apartment. I lived with my mom for the longest time, and actually haven't even spent a whole year by myself yet. And my mom was really great, so don't think I am complaining.  I am really grateful for the help that she gave me and my daughter. Asking for that help was really hard though, because on top of the poverty, I was keeping partner abuse a secret too, and that is something that is really embarrassing and hard to admit to and ask for help with. You feel a deep shame, deep in your bones, that you let things get that bad. I had kept all of that a secret, and no one is ever going to know everything, because I just can't talk about it.
   But now we have our own apartment, and I felt really extravagant because I hooked up cable. But we can actually afford it, and  I can afford to do everything on my own, with no financial help from state or family (although I get a lot of other types of support from family, but I hope I supply my share of support to them as well.) And the best thing of all, if I hadn't liked this doctor, I can easily change my doctor. People don't understand a lot of things about state supplied insurance. A lot of providers just will not accept state insurance, finding a good provider can be really difficult, and a lot of time, there is just no choice about who you can see.
   My biggest example was when I was pregnant, in Florida, and I didn't even have a choice at all of where I could go. If I had been considered high risk, I would have gone to a hospital for my check-ups, but I was not, so I went through the Health Department. No choice, go there or go nowhere. And those doctors were not always nice, and you always saw a different one, so you were never sure what you were going to deal with. And one time, during a pap smear (I know, I know, but I won't go into complete detail) I felt really bad pain, and I told the doctor that I was in pain she snapped at me, "You need to learn the difference between pain and pressure. This does not hurt." It did though, and afterwords, I was bleeding: a lot. She had torn me during the examination. (<---- This is probably where my doctor phobia stems from.) Another doctor came in and was giving her a funny look after she verified that I had been torn, and the woman just shrugged. That was all my pain was worth to her.
   That is the type of health care that state insurance provides for people. Okay, to be fair, there are some really good doctors, and some people get really good care, but it's a toss up. So I am really, really glad that  I do not have to depend on state benefits. And that was what I was thinking about a lot today. I'm really grateful that I have been given the support from family and the opportunity to get myself back on my feet. Sometimes I just feel the need to sit back and be grateful for the fact that  I have managed to come so far from where I was. This is one of those days, so  I am sorry for the somewhat sappy, depressing post, but this is my past as well as the funny stories and zombies and games and books. People have a lot of aspects, and this is one of mine. Now go do something fun and be happy. Because I am going too; I feel the need to really reminisce and go play Final Fantasy VII. And after that, I am going to continue to improve my life. Ain't nothing stopping me now. Except maybe bad grammar.

Monday, July 15, 2013

"Momma! You Lied To Me!!!"

    Ugggg. Tomorrow is the big day: shots. Shots as in multiple, not as in one. I was expecting only to have to get my daughter the TdaP booster, but this morning I spent some time on the phone with staff from her doctor's office, and they kindly reminded me that my daughter needed some shot for meningitis and did I also want to get her starting on the HPV shot while I had her in there. Attack of the multiple shots!
    Well, of course I said yes. I want my daughter as protected against that biatch we call Mother Nature as possible. Every time we think we have her beat: she cooks up some nice new disease. But I am not looking forward to the triple attack of needles (sharp pointy things piercing my baby!!!) and I am really glad that I have the next three days off so that I can monitor her for any adverse reaction. And of course the fevers and not feeling well that always comes with vaccines.
   Which leads me to today's story: the last time my daughter got shots. She was five, and because of the February birthday, had not yet started school, but that was coming in the fall. She just needed the last of her shots. So I made an appointment with her doctor and we were on our way.
   My daughter by that time had learned to be very wary of the doctor's office. After a childhood of vaccines, how could a kid not be nervous? And although you can't tell now, after two years of major growth spurts that left her damn near as tall as me, and after a term in elementary school where she was constantly playing rough with the boys at recess, she was once a very dainty little girl. And she has these big brown eyes that melt you, so when she sat in the doctor's office waiting to be injected, which her bottom lip trembling, all the nurses and staff were trying to put her at ease.
   Of course, I knew what was coming. I had been doing shots with her since birth; due to the move from Florida to Washington, these nurses did not understand the horror that was about to descend. When my daughter started getting those shots, she didn't cry: she screamed. Blood-curdling, glass-shattering, ear-drum busting I am being murdered screams. Screams that had every single staff member and nurse and doctor busting into our little patent cubicle to see what the hell had went wrong and who was dying. Little girls: never underestimate the power of their vocal cords.
   Of course, all this time I am holding her and frantically saying,  "Shhh, shhhhh. These will make it so you don't get sick." But she was screaming so much that I didn't really think that she was paying me any attention.
   Several weeks later, unrelated to the vaccines, the whole household face a plague of stomach viruses. Every time someone would shake the virus off, they would only be well for a day or two before getting sick again. Liquid from both ends, and this is not fun when you are just as sick as your kid and the niece that you are babysitting. Threw up? Doesn't matter, the babies are throwing up too and you better get your ass up and take care of them. Shit yourself? Tough; so did the kiddos (two year old and a five year old) so get your ass in gear and clean them up and if you are lucky you'll have a few minutes break to take care of yourself. And we used up all of my gatorade supply, which is something I keep stocked for illness. My first defense against dehydration.
   So when we were all better, and we were shopping in the store, restocking my depleted gatorade supply, what comes out of my daughter's mouth? You probably guessed, she exclaims in the highly outraged and disillusioned tones that only a five year old girl can manage, "Momma! You lied to me! You said I wouldn't get sick if I got shots, and I got sick!"

Sunday, July 14, 2013

The Pet Peeve To Beat All Other Peeves

    One-upmanship of kids: that has always struck me as exceedingly wrong. Not bragging that your kid has reached a milestone, because as moms, we all deserve the right to brag that our baby just took a first step, or our kid got their first A on a test. Moms have the right to brag. What I am talking about is when someone says, "Oh, I got my kid potty trained!" And then someone else says, "Really? You waited so long? Little Suzy was potty trained when she turned one." Really? Good for you and little Suzy.
   Most of you moms have been the victim of this one-upmanship between moms, whether the issue at hand is potty training, or the first word, or learning to read, or whatever. Babies do hundreds of new things, but the thing is, they are going to do them at their own pace. You can't force them to do something that they are not ready to do.
   I used potty training as an example, because that was the one that I was hit with the most. My daughter had a cousin on her father's side, who actually was using the potty at one. And my daughter wasn't even close to being potty trained. And I tried everything to get that kid to pee on the pot. My favorite attempt was following the suggestion that I put my girl in 'big girl ' panties. All the time, 24/7. Except, for some reason, my daughter was fascinated by watching pee drip down her leg. Don't ask me why, okay? I don't understand the inner workings of a two year old's mind. All I know is that when she went to pee, she would bend over like she was gonna touch her toes and watch her pee flow down her leg. Wherever she stood, that was were she peed, right through those 'big girl' panties. And someone honestly suggested that if I took her out in public and let her do that she would be so embarrassed that she would stop. Are you kidding me? Someone would be embarrassed alright, but that person wouldn't be the little hot mess; that someone would be the little hot mess's mom: I'll pass.
   Finally I just ignored all the people shoving their little prodigal children in my face, and let things happen how they were going to happen. My daughter was four when she finally graduated from pull-ups to 'big girl' panties, but on the bright side, she never had an accident after finally being potty trained. Just let this happen, trust me, your kid is not going to be still wearing diapers when they are sixteen.
  The thing about playing the one-up card with kids is that they understand. I don't know why people think that kids don't understand what you are saying. They are kids, not furniture -- of course they understand you. And you're sitting there, possibly making some kid feel bad because she or he didn't do something as fast as another kid. Or you are making the parent feel bad about their kid and their parenting style, and there is no one right way. And kids don't develop in one same way. They march to their own drum. Let them; stop messing up their beat. Who cares who did what first? If your kid was first, fine, but all of your friends listened to you brag, so can't you listen to them brag without trying to take something from their accomplishment? 

Thursday, July 11, 2013

I Thought The Nightmare Was Over....

I know that I have a coworker/friend who is going to read this title and think that this is another blog about those crappy-ass registers that I keep getting assigned too, but this is worse than that. This isn't about registers, or work at all. This is about (insert dramatic pause here) immunizations. As in my daughter finally needs her next immunizations, which when they told me, back when she was five, that she wouldn't need more until she was eleven, I was ecstatic. That was forever! But that day is now here, six short, short years later.
   I was always that mom when the time came for those nightmarish shots. You know, the mom who flinched as the needle came closer and closer to her precious baby. I always left the doctor's office just a little teary-eyed. I'm sure they loved me, but what can you say? They were sticking sharp, pointy objects into my little baby girl. It's a horrible ordeal, and then your baby feels rotten for a couple days after and you are checking temps and  making sure nothing funky is going on with the injection sites, because there are multiple sites. Usually when babies go to get their shots, they give them three or four at once. I'm not sure why they don't space them out a little? Wouldn't that make recovery easier? But then maybe that just prolongs the misery? Who knows. All I know is that I don't like watching someone stick sharp, pointy objects into my daughter.
   But I am not one of those parents who are against immunizations. They protect your child. I had another mom ask me once why I let my daughter be tortured (tortured? That seems extreme, even to teary-eyed me) and said she was taking her child to a chicken pox party, where they deliberately expose their kids to chicken pox. Okay, folks, I don't like to pull up research, so I am going to let you look this up and find the info on your own, but statistically speaking, more children have died from chicken pox than from the vaccine for chicken pox. And what would we do without that polio vaccine? This doesn't seem reasonable to me. I'm sorry if you are one of the parents that agree with this, because I just can't. Sure, I do agree that they should continue to do research on these vaccines, and make them as safe as possible, but to not give them at all?
She used to have a Florida one, but they switched the card when we moved up here.
   Nevertheless, I am not looking forward to my daughter getting this TdaP booster. She is older now, so hopefully she will just be hugely embarrassed by her mother breaking down, and not break down herself. And I put off the appointment as long as possible, but I had to make the call today. Time is running out. She needs this booster by the time school starts, and for the last two weeks of August, we are going to be in Yellowstone, so I need to get this shot done.
   So we have an appointment Tuesday to see the doctor. Since I am taking her to a new doctor, they have to examine her first, and they may be able to give her the shot then, or I might have to make another appointment for that. I hope we can do the booster shot then and just get the nightmare over with, but who knows? But Tuesday morning, you all know what I will be doing. I dread Tuesday; I'm not ready!!! My daughter is going to be fine, and is rolling her eyes at me as I type, but I:
I feel the need to curl into a fetal position. 

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Social Media And Advertising (ACK!!!!)

   I've mentioned that I'm not the greatest with computers, right? Why then, would I choose to start writing a blog, which requires the internet, which requires a computer? Haha! Well, that's me for you. I felt like it. I didn't care if I knew what I was doing, I just felt like I needed to start writing again, and this seemed like a good way to get all those random thoughts and opinions that are rattling around in my head out there. I wasn't sure if I would keep up with writing this blog, and I wasn't even sure if anyone would read my inane ramblings. Who cares what I think?
   But my family has been really supportive! That was great. And then my friends and coworkers have also been super supportive, and that was great too! Then I started looking at the stats to my blog, and while I still have a small readership, there are too many page views to account for just my friends and family, so that meant other people were looking at my blog. And then people started occasionally commenting and/or shooting me messages through my blog's e-mail, and I was happy. Mostly those messages have been positive. Yay!
   I have always liked to write. For a while I was gonna write books, epic sci-fi, fantasy stories (and who knows, I still might) and then I moved to poetry, and all I can say is be glad that I gave that up. The world has enough bad poetry in it already. You don't even wanna see that. But I never, ever imagined something like writing a blog; partly because there weren't blogs when I was a kid (<----haha! I'm getting old) and partly because blogging is like having a public diary, and I never imagined having a good enough self-esteem to allow something like that. And partly, because I am slow to the social media stuff. I just started Facebooking maybe two years ago? Maybe three? Not more than that, though. And I tried to start a Twitter account once, and that shit just confused the hell out of me. I gave that up. I don't understand the sign-up process and all those questions and steps alarmed me. I have a Pinterest account that I never visit or use because I just don't understand the point of that. But even Facebook, which I now use avidly to keep in touch with all my friends and family  that live all over the states, has the power to confuse me. Usually I can work through that confusion, but there you have it: I am not social media savvy. So being the genius that I am, I was all like, I'm going to start a blog.
My Facebook profile picture. Not exciting, but good for now. 
   Okay, Marie, that didn't turn out too bad. I don't think I'm doing too badly, and Google Blogger is really easy to use. Set up was not difficult; and I was off. But then, I decide that I want to go for having people actually read my blog. So I have to look into ways to advertise my blog. Ack!!! What have I gotten myself into? So I have been learning that you can submit your url into search engines like Yahoo so that they will pull your website up on people's searches, and you can get your blog entered into blog databases like Technorati, so I do that, and for a while that's all I do. But I got ambitious on my last days off and looked around for more stuff to do. So I found BlogUpp, and that one is actually pretty easy. Also, it's kinda fun because I keep clicking the BlogUpp link to other people's blogs and looking at other people's blogs. I like that (<--dork, dork, I am a dork!!). Networked Blogs was a nightmare for me, and I'm pretty sure that I did that wrong, so I'm ignoring it. The link is on my page, hopefully it does what it is supposed too, and I am ignoring it with all my might. I cussed at it a lot too while I was setting it up. But the worst thing was (dun-dun-duuun) setting up a Facebook page for my blog, which is linked off to the top corner. That was a nightmare. I've set one up before, right, so what is the problem? The problem is that I am a dumbass. The page is up and running, but I think that I am done with trying to promote this blog for a while. I do like the fact that people are reading it (THANKS!!!) and, sure, I'll get ambitious again, but for now, Facebook gave me bad dreams. Social media is scary; I need a cookie now. And a bottle of whisky.
My cover photo on Facebook. My mom took this pic at Ocean Shores. I use a lot of my mom's photo's in this blog, and a lot of my own. 

Monday, July 8, 2013

We Morphed Into Mole People

The neighbors were all looking me like I was nutso as I took pictures of the sky from my porch.
   Today is yet another gloomy, cloud covered day here in Washington. What else is new though? My daughter and I are used to this gloom, this constant cloud cover that brings with it oceans of rain. And my daughter and I are southern people, so once upon a time, this gloom was a real hardship for us. We had quite an adjustment to make. I had been living in Mississippi since I was 9, and when I was 19 (and pregnant, bah) I moved to Florida, which is where my daughter was born. We moved up to Washington when she was 3, and we have been here ever since.
   And while you think that we must have been long used to the weather of Washington, this is the first year that I have felt fully acclimated. Yes, my acclimation to this cloud covered, rain soaked land has taken almost eight years. But just think of the difference!
   In Florida, we do have hurricanes, so you would think that I would be used to heavy rain, but Washington's rain isn't all that heavy. The big thing is that the rain is constant. Florida's big rain is mostly seasonal, the rest of the time, rain is occasional. Here, one second you could be nice and dry, and the next second you could be getting pissed on by the heavens. There is no way to tell. Another difference is the sun. In Florida, a lot of times when rain did grace us, the sun would still be out, fighting the rain clouds for the right to dominate the sky. They were not wrong when they nicknamed Florida the Sunshine State. Compared to Washington, which is so gloomy that a certain author based her sparkle fairies (hmmm-hmmm, I mean vampires) here. The third major difference is the temperature. In Florida, during the summer it was only a matter of time before you hit the 100 degree weather. In Washington, hitting 90 degree weather sparks heat advisories, and no apartments come with air conditioning because that feature isn't considered necessary.
   My daughter and I were sunshine people, beach people, and we moved to a place where all the beaches are cold, and where the sun rarely graces us. We were used to 90 degree weather as a norm, and we moved to a place were 90 degree weather was considered way too hot. My daughter had never seen snow, and she saw snow for the first time when we moved here. Not only snow, but ice. I had never even heard of an ice storm, but I moved here and found myself walked to work in the aftermath of one, and got pegged in the head with an icicle for my trouble (which freakin' hurts). I didn't know if I would ever like this place, and I surely wasn't imagining that I would ever feel that I fit in.
   Except we both started to fit in, and this year, when we found ourselves facing 90 degree weather, and days without a drop of rain, I found myself stepping outside, shading my eyes even though I had sunglasses on and muttering, "I hate the sun." Whaaaaaaat?! Did I just say that? Not only that, but I found myself longing for 60 or 70 degree weather, and wishing for winter, formerly my most hated season.
   Then I was hit by the realization that I am not longer a sun-child. My move to the North had been a sort of an exile from the South, I needed a refuge from certain people who lived there, and I had family up here who could help me out. But if I moved back to the South this minute, I would be miserable. I couldn't take the heat, I couldn't take the constant sun in my eyes, and the humidity would just slay me. This is because, beyond all explanation and reason, I have morphed into a mole person. And if I have morphed, then I insist that my daughter has morphed with me. I will not be alone in my mole-ness. We are mole people now. 

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Haha! I Win; A Zombie-Fanatic Is Born

   I've been attempting to convince my daughter that the love of all things zombie is only natural. For a long time this was a downhill battle. She just wasn't interested. She wasn't interested in Resident Evil, she wasn't interested in any of the old zombie movie classics, she didn't care about the Walking Dead (and still doesn't, what the hell?)
   But I wore her down, and finally, I was able to convince her to read this book called The Forest of Hands and Teeth, by Carrie Ryan. Now, this book was enough to convince her that she might actually like some of the zombie stuff that her mom was trying to force down her throat. This book didn't turn her into a full blown zombie-lover, but this book did open the door. And yeah, it's in the young adult section, but this isn't some love story that makes zombies seem sexy. Zombies were the undead, and they did eat people and infect the masses.
   Then I found this wonderful book that I really got into. I loved this book. I bet many of you can guess the name, but for those of you ignorant in all things zombie, the book was called World War Z, by Max Brooks. I couldn't put this book down, despite the fact that I don't think that this book is the easiest book to read. You don't follow a main character; this book takes the form of a multitude of interviews, never with the same person, and through these interviews, you see how the shape of the zombie war unfolded. As soon as you get into one person's story, that story ends and you move on to the next person. This book should have been annoying as hell to read, but it wasn't, and I read the damn thing in one night.
    My daughter has made the comment to me that I always chose the best books for her to read; a fact that does make me pretty happy. I like being able to provide people with suggestions of good reading material, and I am always really glad when they like a suggestion. Yay! I don't know why I like this; I just do. We all have our little quirks. And I guess my daughter decided that since I had always given her good books to read, that she wanted to read the book that I got so into that I spent a whole night reading the book. So she read the book, and she liked it! I was surprised, because I actually do think that this book has the potential to be hard to follow, and though my daughter reads on a high level, according to school testing, I didn't know how she would like or be able to follow this book. But she read the book, she was able to follow the story line, and best of all, she really liked it.
   She liked the book so much, that when they came out with the movie, she begged to be able to go see it. Now, I know that this movie was rated PG-13, but I carefully read the previews, and I had decided that if the movie just got too graphic for her, that  I would be prepared to usher her out of the theater. She really wanted to see the movie, and after letting her read the book, it seemed asinine to refuse to let her watch the movie. But not only did I worry about the violence, I also worried about the quality of the story. Obviously, this movie was going to follow Brad Pitt's character throughout the whole of the movie, and I worried that they were going to take this really good zombie story and turn it into a Brad Pitt flick. But we went to see the movie on the 4th of July, and I thought the movie was really good, and I also thought that the story could have fit right into the book. The book is basically a collection of survival stories from different people, and not the whole of the stories, just the critical moments. This movie followed that structure, in my own opinion. This was the key part of this man's survival of the zombie war, and when his part was over, the story ended. I've heard complaints over the abrupt ending, but the book is full of abrupt endings. I liked the movie, and so did my daughter!
   Woo-hoo! The first zombie movie that my daughter has liked. Also, the first zombie movie that my daughter has ever really watched, due to lack of interest. But she liked this one, and if they make another, she has already informed me that she wants to go see that one too. This, I tell myself, is the birth of a zombie fanatic.

   (Side note: I also got my mom to go see the movie. Which was a mind-blowing achievement for two reasons: she doesn't like anything scary or gory, and she hates Brad Pitt almost as much as she hates Tom Cruise. I now consider myself a master-manipulator. Mwahahahahahahaha!)

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Dear Customer; All The Things That I Wish I Could Have Said

Dear Customer,
   You might not realize this, but when I came in to work today there were not many people shopping and work was slow. But in a grocery store, there are always things to be done, and so when they asked me to help with go-backs, I willingly turned my register light off. In case you don't know, go-backs are all the items that customers decided they didn't want and gave to the cashier or stuck on some random shelf. Someone has to put them away, and they needed some help back there because of the holiday rush. Of course I agreed, better than standing at the register and twiddling my thumbs.
   I realize that when they called me up to check that we had gotten slammed. So I didn't dither; I came as fast as I could, and I took the next person in line from the register next to the one I was assigned to. See, where I work, we don't make the announcement that so-and-so register is open. I've worked in stores that did this, and what usually happens is that the person refusing to stand in line and prowling around for a new register gets in line first, so what we do is we go take a person directly from a line. This person has been waiting in line, and deserves the chance to be next. According to store policy, this is what we are supposed to do. Of course, one cashier cannot take every next person first; we are only human after all and are not capable of cloning ourselves and running multiple registers.
   I had taken the next lady in line, as I said, and had rung her up and sent her on her way and moved on to my next customer when you came up and said, "Excuse me, ma'am, can I ask you something?"
   You were so polite, and I turned to you with a smile and a, "Sure," expecting to need to direct you to whatever item you were looking for. So you can imagine my shock when you went from polite to rude and condescending. I wasn't expecting you to condemn me for not announcing a lane opening over the intercom, and I surely wasn't expecting to be queried about whether or not I knew how to do my job and if I was new to the store. Since I am female, I can go from happy to pissed faster than the speed of light, and this happened. In fact,  I was seeing red, but I was proud of the way I kept my cool and kept the smile on my face. I explained our policy to you, and explained that I had taken the next in line on a different register for the simple fact that this register was the closest to mine, so taking from that line made the most sense as all the lines were long.
   The thing is, I could see the disappointment on your face, and while I do not have psychic abilities, I do believe that you were hoping for a stammered apology from a flustered cashier or outright defiance so that you could get management involved. My calm, collected explanation gave you no opportunity to feel superior to me. My smile and friendly manner gave you no opportunity to become indignant and feel justified in your anger. You came over not to correct what you saw as a wrong, but to bully and make someone just doing their job feel small. And I feel justified in this belief, because I heard you call me a bitch as you walked away.
   But while you did make me angry, because I do get angry whenever I see someone trying to make themselves feel better by making others feel bad, you did not make me feel bad. I know my job; I know my store's policies, and I know that I did nothing to justify such rude, disrespectful behavior. And in the long run, I am glad you came to me with that bullshit, because we do have some shy wallflowers working the registers for us; some young girls who have not yet grown the thick skin that they need to function in the role of a person who works customer service in retail. I am glad you did not go to one of them; all we need is another cashier crying in the bathroom because someone was mean to them. Poor girls, they'll harden up soon, but I've already gotten there, so as  I said, I am glad that you came and blasted me and not one of them.
   And I want you to know that I also feel sorry for you. Yes, you read that right. I feel sorry for you because I just can't imagine what you are going through that makes you able to derive comfort and/or pleasure from trying to pick on an honest person just doing their job; from trying to make them feel small and insignificant. I hope that whatever is wrong, you feel better soon. Me, I already feel better, so don't worry about that at all. I have a loving family waiting at home, I have the best friends in the world, and I work with the greatest people. My life is awesome. I hope yours gets better soon.

The Cashier You Tried To Pick On

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Fireworks (AKA Pyromaniacs)

   The 4th of July has always been a big holiday for me. I love this holiday; and not just because I love my country, although I do. I am (cliche coming) proud to be an American. Our country does have some issues, and there are some major clowns in the Government right now, but I can say that, post that opinion on a public blog, and face no repercussions. No people at my door, no censorship, nothing, because I have rights and can exercise my freedom of speech. And (God forbid) if I lost my job tomorrow, there are safety net programs in place that will help prevent my child and I from facing starvation and homelessness. Yes, those programs are flawed, but they are there. Many countries don't have them at all, flawed or otherwise, and in many countries, I would not have the options that I do here. So yes, I love my country, flaws and all. Flaws only mean that we have some work to do.
   But I digress, because love of my country is not the only reason that I love the 4th of July, the celebration of our country's independence. I love the 4th of July because of my dad. You see, my dad is a pyromaniac (not really, not really, jk in facebook speech), and every year while I was growing up, my dad would take us to these huge firework stands. We didn't get those prepackaged deals in the grocery stores, we went out to big tent stands, were they had every kind of firework that you could think of. We would browse the selection, and we would of course buy black cats and sparklers and bottle rockets, but we would buy the big fancy things as well. Those firework tent guys had to love seeing my dad. He spent BIG money on the 4th.
   On the actual 4th, during the day, we would set off the bottle rockets. This scared the beejeebies out of my mom, and as a mom myself now, I understand, but as a kid: we ignored her. And the reason that this scared the beejeebies out of my mom was because my dad and I; we did things that you aren't supposed to do. We would twist as many of those bottle rocket fuses together as we could, and light them and run. That was his number one rule: light them and run. And we would see how many we could twist together, and each time we managed to get all of them to go off at once, we would try for more next time. Always bigger with us. (DON'T DO THIS!!!) And then when the day wore on, we would start preparing for a huge bonfire. Every 4th we had a bonfire and we would do things like roast hot dogs and marshmallows and we would invite extended family and friends and everyone would eat and drink and wait for the dark.
   But my dad and I never waited for the dark to have fun. We were always good for a prank, and the one that stands out in my memory of our 4th of July celebrations was the time he had me sidle up to fire and throw in an entire pack of Black Cat fireworks while everyone stood there talking (DON'T EVER DO THIS!!!) Hehehehehehe; this was great and my dad and I; we were not nice.
    And when the night was finally dark enough, we would light the big ones. We had whistlers and roman candles and things that I don't even have names for, and we could do them all at our place, because my dad has five acres of land and we lived in the country before the divorce and the country doesn't have all the no firework rules that apartment complexes do. So I have really great memories from 4th of July, and for some reason (God) we never killed ourselves or blew off a hand, or killed anyone else.
   Being that I am a city-dweller now, and live in an apartment myself, we can't do fireworks ourselves. My daughter wouldn't like to actually set them off anyway; I have mentioned that she has a totally different personality from me, and pyromania is not one of the personality traits that we share. But I do make a big deal of the 4th. We do spend the time together as a family, and we go to watch the firework shows that the parks put on. She does enjoy that, and frankly, I am too much of a worry-wart, helicopter mom to let her do any of the crap that I did. Twist fuses together and light them? I don't think so: not my baby. 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

What Exactly Is Wrong With Teaching Your Child Right From Wrong?

   Discipline; the way people act you would think that this word is the worst cuss word in the English vocabulary. Even worse than saying this word is acting on this word. That's a crime, apparently. Well, I don't know about the rest of you, but I guess I am guilty. I know that some of you are not, but if my child misbehaves, there are going to be some consequences.
   Oh, I know all of the arguments. Self-esteem issues, development, they'll learn to behave negatively, and all I can say is this: I call bullshit. My argument is this: we are supposed to be preparing these kids for real life; the real world. We are supposed to be teaching these kids how to act in social situations, and how to succeed in life. And in life, there are consequences to actions. In the adult world, bad behavior is not ignored. In real life, not knowing how to properly interact with your contemporaries can cost you friends, relationships, and even career opportunities. Think that Little Johnny not getting his homework done is no big deal? What happens when you procrastinate on the job, and don't get a task done on time? Maybe you won't be fired, depending on exactly what the task was, but maybe you will. Certainly, when the time comes for promotion, that promotion is going to go to the person who does get the job done. That is a consequence. Think that Little Suzie picking on kids in the playground is just high spirits, just her being misunderstood? She does that at work, she's gonna get slapped with a lawsuit at best. Another consequence.
   Since all these kids are going to grow up to face all these consequences, what exactly is wrong with instilling that knowledge in them from the start? No one is talking about taking a belt and beating them bloody -- that's child abuse, and contrary to popular belief, there is a difference between child abuse and discipline. My daughter once didn't get her homework done on time, and I did find out. She was grounded for a week; no TV, no games, for a week. Because she had lied to me for a week and not done her homework. She wasn't emotionally scarred by that. She didn't doubt that I loved her. What happened was that she learned a valuable lesson about what happens when you do not do your job, and her job is school. Think that this doesn't mirror real life? If she was an adult, and she had not done her job for a week, she would have probably lost that job. Losing a job means losing income. Losing income means that you loose the privileges that you bought with that income. She learned that lesson now, as a child, when all she lost was a week's worth of TV and game playing. Small losses. And she has not done something like that since. She learned her lesson. And yes, sometimes kids need a few repeat to learn a lesson, some parents are going to have a harder time. But I have always been firm with my daughter. She knows that I will listen to her side of a story, her excuses, but if they are not reasonable, she gets punished.
   This is parenting. Parenting is hard. Parenting is not always family bonding time, or learning fun things, or hugs and kisses. Yes, those are important parts of parenting, but parenting can really suck sometimes too. Do you really think that I enjoyed that week that I took away her TV and her games? She was good about her punishment, I have to say; I was proud. She didn't whine or try to get out of it or beg for an early release. She did her time and paid her dues. But I felt like shit. I felt like the meanest damn mom in the whole world. But I want her to go into this world with a knowledge of how things are going to work. I was her to have the knowledge and experience that she needs to make good choices and get ahead. Discipline is a part of that; a large part. So next time you think that letting your kid's bad behavior slide, you might want to think again. I'm not saying crack the whip all the time, kids will be kids, but your kid also needs to learn that they are not always going to get away with behaving like demon spawn. 

Monday, July 1, 2013

You Think Being A Working Mom Is Easy? Where Did You Leave Your Brain?

    I have written about how I don't think moms should judge each other based on their stay home or working status. I think comparing difficulties in those situations is rather like comparing apples and oranges. I was a stay-at-home mom with my daughter until she was two, then worked for a year, and then quit and was a stay-at-home mom until she started kindergarten, so having been in both roles, I say that in my own experience, the stresses and problems you deal with are totally different and equally hard. I respect both, and just because I am a working mom, that does not mean that I look down on stay-at-home moms. I don't.
   That being said, I am not taking bullshit comments about how much easier being a working mom is, which is what fired up this response: someone has said it. And I am - in the most public way that I have available to me - I am calling bullshit. Being a working mom is not easy. I get to talk to people outside the home? I get more adult interaction? Fine. You know what I also get? I get to miss important milestones because I was gone, earning the money needed to keep a roof over my kid's head. I missed the last school open house because my request for time off was not granted. Know what else I miss? The assurance that my kid is being treated well. My daughter was in daycare, and she was badly mistreated by one of the workers. Having gone through that, do you think that this is ever NOT on my mind when I am not with her? Even when she is with family, whom I trust explicitly, they are not me. Do you know how hard that is? And not just for 'date night' but five days a week. I miss a lot. And when my daughter was younger, she told me that she wouldn't mind if I got fired because I would be home more. Do you think that my heart didn't break into a million pieces? So here you have just one of the hardships of being a working mom: the worry and the guilt of being out of the house so often.
   I don't have to depend on someone else for money? Well, I suffered from economical abuse, so I do understand that. Having to ask for money sucks. Not feeling like you contribute financially makes you feel small at times, so I do get that. Making money is one of the perks of working. But my money isn't extra. Some working moms work for the extra income,  but my my income is the ONLY income. If I don't work, no food, no apartment, no school clothes, and so-on and so-forth. But I don't have to ask some tightwad jerk, and I am assuming that if this is one of your arguments then you are with a tightwad jerk. I don't get this one from the women who are allowed access to the funds, some of you have good guys. So, we will say perk. The con? I've had a rotten day, people have been rude, the debit was down for two hours, someone cussed me out in English, someone else cussed me out in Spanish, someone else cussed me out in Russian, and I am exhausted, but I still have to go home and cook dinner. But the stove handle falls off the stove, so first I have to get out my handy-man tools and screw that thing back on. Again. I don't get to come home and put my feet up. My daughter has a cold, I have to make sure she gets her medicine, laundry has been waiting for me the last three days and I am getting to the point where putting that chore off is not going to be an option unless we want to run around naked, and something is clogging the toilet again, so I need to put that plumbing hat on. Days off? Those are chore days. Catch up on the house work days. Take daughter to appointment days. My motherhood duties do not get suspended because I work.
    And while I do not have to listen to all the soap opera and bonbon jokes, which is total bullshit, and I know that, I do have to listen to the 'good mother's stay home with the kids' cracks. Apparently, women like me are destroying the family structure. Because I deserve all the blame for America's divorce rate. Staying with an abusive, shiftless jerk who was sucking the life from me was the better option, how could I have not seen that? If I would have just let him finish convincing me that I was the lowest form of life on the planet, no one would ever get divorced again. Men and women wouldn't cheat on each other, no one would suffer partner abuse ever again, kids would always have two parents and neither of those parents would ever hurt them, and diamonds would fall out of all of our mouths when we spoke, and rainbows would burst from our asses when we shit. Everything would be sunshine and roses.
    I do not try to put my issues above anyone's; many of my closest friends are stay-at-home moms, and they have stress just as much as I do and they have just as many problems. I am not writing this to say that being a working mom is harder. I am not writing this to make my life seem like it sucks, because my life does not suck. I'm writing this to say that sometimes people suck, I hate judgmental assholes, and if you don't like my life fine, but ignore me, don't get in my face and try to convince me that I am taking the easy way out. If you think that, you don't know me, and you don't know the things I have been though, and you don't understand where I am trying to go. And if you are the type of person who is just going to pass judgement without an attempt at gaining some understanding and new perspective, then you are not the type of person that I want to know me. So let's just agree to leave each other alone.