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I don’t always enjoy the Dick and the penis people…….THERE…I said it. Well, actually, its NOT the first time I’ve SAID IT. But I’m pretty sure it’s the first time I’ve “said” it in printed text.

I love them all, my penis people and the Dick. But evenly tempered with that crazy love, is that simple fact that I don’t always particularly LIKE them. Sometimes they absolutely exhaust and frustrate me. Sometimes I catch myself daydreaming, longingly, about my single, childless, carefree days. Sometimes I’ve grown tired and bitchy and, while its generally so very wrong to simply throttle them into absolute compliance, I can almost feel the thrill that would come from said throttling. I often look forward, very happily, to those peaceful moments when they’ve gone to sleep (and the Dick’s gone to work) and I’m finally completely ALONE with JUST myself. No one asking me for ANYTHING. No one vying for my attention. I suck up the quiet and find I REALLY need it like a crack whore NEEDS another hit.

Motherhood has long since been known as a giving of the most important parts of yourself to people that won’t even appreciate your sacrifice until they’re much older….and, in a wicked twist of irony, you will probably be dead and won’t even get to enjoy the perfunctory “I told you so” moments. No one but a mom will understand the times when you are deathly sick but your kid needs help with a science project NOW, so you suck up all that shitty-ness that you feel and you just….keep…..moving. Even when every fiber of your being is just BEGGING you to stop and rest. No one but a mom will understand that, while you MUST work hard and long to provide a roof and food, you will still be consumed with unwavering guilt about missing quality moments with those same ungrateful brats….brats that will revel in your overwhelming guilt and not only work harder to make you feel even shittier, but they will use that guilt to play on your already frayed emotions to blackmail you for things that they want.

Many, many years ago, I was lucky enough to find super smart ass extraordinaire Nikki and her blog Moms Who Drink and Swear. She’d begun a Facebook page based on her blog and those mommas were smart and funny, quick with snark and bitchy-in-a-good-way. I was HOME! Nikki’s blog morphed into a book, much to HER surprise but not very surprising at all to the rest of us, her loyal fans. If you’ve not had the chance to read Nikki’s book, you can buy it here. What Nikki blogged and status-updated about were all the things that many of us THINK but never really had the balls to say. Only…..now we had a platform AND a group of like-minded moms who understood. Moms who were happy to commiserate with one another…..all of us knew that, with Motherhood, there is little you can actually DO about any given situation, but it was nice to know you weren’t SO fucking ALONE! Yipeee motherfuckers!

What’s funny, is I’ve spent SO many AMAZING years with these equally amazing women, I sometimes forget that there are still mommas out there that can do nothing more than pretend that motherhood is NOTHIING but happiness and sunshine and unicorns that miraculously shoot magical rainbows outta their ass. It’s as if they were to let go of this bullshit façade, their entire shitty little lives would fall apart. And when I encounter one of THOSE MOMS, I find myself staring at them, while they gush endlessly about there fabulous kids and their perfect life, like they have six heads, twelve legs and eight boobs. Freaky ass bitches! They scare me more than a zombie apocalypse AND a Supervolcano combined (see Heather, I’m STILL freaking the fuck out about that).

I’ve been ever so lucky enough to have surrounded myself with a wonderful group of moms, women who’ve been part therapist, part co-conspirator in the imaginary murders that I sometimes plot. Whenever I’m having an incredibly shitty moment, I can type a quick synopsis of my grief, press enter…..and presto. MAGIC! In a moments notice, I will have suggestions and advice and offers for bail money. I have friends who will (ahem….joking?) offer up a back-hoe to dig that not-so-shallow grave (Wendy…) and implicit advice on where to hide the bodies. They offer you a place to hide when you are simply fed the fuck up (Candice). In short, I’ve found an amazing support system and have offered the same support myself when its needed.

And THAT’S what’s so important about finding the perfect balance of crazy mommas. You KNOW the sun isn’t always shining because there are many more rainy days than not. You KNOW that at the end of those stupid rainbows is a pot o’ baby vomit and you’re not sure WHAT the FUCK to do. You KNOW that those unicorns are ASSHOLES who will kick you in the ass when you’re already down. But facing these moments is easier when you have your kick ass momma friends surrounding you with love (and a perfect alibi).

So, very recently the Dick had this ABSOLUTELLY FABULOUS idea (((insert dramatic eye roll here))) that we should connect better as a family. I’m not sure what kind of mid-life psychosis he might be finding himself in the midst of, but I get the sense that he’s read something somewhere or talked to someone or SOMETHING that has caused him to become hell bent on such a notion. I can nearly guarantee he didn’t come to this conclusion all on his own (PS – Screw you WHOever or WHATever placed this idea in his head).

So there we were….a happy little family of tablets and smart phones, computers and televisions….posed with the idea of COMPLETELY unplugging for an hour EACH day. What the fuck are we….QUAKERS??? To say I was skeptical that this would be even remotely successful is an understatement. But the Dick is rarely this pumped about ANYTHING so I thought “why the hell not”. And so we sat the kids down and begin the enormous task of setting this freak-show plan in motion.

** and it was met with happiness and joy **

NOT! Both penis people IMMEDIATELY balked at the idea. Oldest penis person was convinced he’d done something that deserved such punishment and began profusely apologizing for all his real or imagine transgressions. Wee penis person simply COULD NOT wrap his wee lil brain around the notion that there would be no SpongeBob for an hour each day.

NO PHONES. Well, maybe I COULD live with that. I actually HATE using my phone. I hate calling or being called. I hate checking voice mail. I hate people who LEAVE voice mail. I’m lukewarm in my feelings about texting and returning texts. Plus, my smart phone is being a complete dumbass right now and I’m only getting about half of my messages anyway. So whatever…..I could survive without my phone for an hour….except….I use my phone to access email! CRAP! I LOVE using email. And FACEBOOK…..Wait….no Facebook for an hour a day??? Admittedly, I’m NOT on Facebook all day, every hour. But I still like having the OPTION to use it when I want. FUUUUUCK!

So, now the Dick had three cranky assholes that weren’t entirely on-board. LET THE PARTY BEGIN!!!

We decided that we would tie this time in with our regularly scheduled dinner time. We’ve always had a standing rule that dinner time is family time, but over the years its completely morphed into a mad dash to finish quickly so we could go back to the shit we REALLY enjoy…. So we would no longer rush through meals, eager to get back to TV or electronics. We would spend that time REALLY together! Talking and sharing our day…….. GAG!!! Even typing that felt a bit hokey. But it wasn’t really that bad. We really took a beat to LISTEN to the penis peoples’ stories. The Dick and I had an ACTUAL conversation. It was…..kinda nice! Ok, so not entirely what I was expecting but we were off to a good start.

Then……..what the fuck do we do with the time AFTER dinner??? Normally, 9 yr old penis person would wander off to his beloved tablet to build crap on MINECRAFT and the wee penis person would ask for a movie in his room. NOT TODAY! I instructed each penis person to select 6 books and we settled on the sofa to read. I actually LOVE to read and am THRILLED that my penis people have inherited my genuine love for printed words. And so….six books each were thoroughly enjoyed. My penis people are also kinda artsy-fartsy. So I dragged out the crayons and the paper and we all got busy coloring and drawing.

I snuck a peek at the clock, wondering how long we’d been at this and how much further we still had to go. TWENTY SIX MINUTES?!?!?!?!? REALLY?!?!?!? I could have sworn we’d have been closer to an hour. It was right about then that the penis people started fighting over the red crayon and wee penis person began to really irritate his big brother. AND WE STILL HAD TWENTY SIX MINUTES TO GO!!! Damn it!

Had the weather been warmer, or even just a bit less damp (thanks SO fucking much stupid Michigan), I would have hustled their little behinds outdoors to blow the stank off of them. But we were stuck inside and I was growing desperate for something to entertain them that didn’t require power or electricity (see….Quakers). A rousing game of hide and seek seemed JUST THE TRICK! You penis people go hide and I’ll come find you! I closed my eyes and counted to 100…..hey, I wanted to give them PLENTY of time to find a good spot! Then I made a half assed attempt to locate them, pretending NOT to hear their giggles.

All in all, we made it through the first day of unplugging for an hour….and each of the subsequent days that followed. I can’t say that I’ve loved every minute of it, but I don’t really loathe it nearly as much as I thought I would. I’m far from “granola mom”, happy sometimes to let my penis people entertain themselves with electronics and television, giving me just enough time to decompress from the day and start to relax. But this hour each day has given me ample opportunity to work towards spending more quality time with my penis people and the Dick.

So while I’m not advocating COMPLETELY AND TOTALLY UNPLUGGING, I have enjoyed the chance to connect better with the people I love. It’s only a hour a day……how bad can it really be?

Toddler x Two….

Just this weekend I took part in a social experiment to see just how exhausted you could be when faced with a challenge.  I was tasked with caring for two small children, roughly the same age and very noticeably alike in their energy and demeanor, and then I took mental notes of how I performed.  It was all very unofficially official.  And I suspect I failed far more than I’m willing to admit.

My husband’s nephew (whatever…I’ve known him forever…he’s MY nephew too) and his young 3 yr old  (nearly 4 yr old) penis person spent the weekend at our home when they were in town from Missouri for a funeral.  When nephew called, I have to say I was STOKED.  Well….not stoked for the REASON they were coming to Michigan.  But stoked to see them just the same.  As soon as I got the call, I promptly set myself into freakishly clean freak mode.  I have no idea WHY I do this….most people that come to visit you come because they want to see YOU not your clean house.  But I always do this…..its just who I am….so I’ve learned to just deal with it.

 

** For those that might be counting…..that would be me + FIVE penis people = A LOT of male energy at my house this weekend **

They weren’t due to arrive until Friday night/Saturday morning (3 am to be exact-ish).  Now, YOU know ME!  My favorite time of night is midnight til 2 am.  So, no worries…..I GOT THIS!  Only, I hadn’t anticipated such a CRA-ZY busy day at work on Friday, coupled with coming home to kids who were SO excited about our pending visitors coming that they were ON like donkey kong.  Suffice to say, by about midnight or so, while waiting for some fresh sheets and a comforter to finish drying, I suddenly felt nearly comatose and was willing myself to catch my second wind.  I WAS NOT successful.  I texted nephew and let him know there was a SLIGHT (honestly, I should have said GUARENTEED) chance I’d end up crashing on the couch so hit me up when you guys are a half hour out and I’ll be ready for your arrival.  Cool????  Cool.  And then I promptly took a big, giant nose-dive into the big fluffy pillows on my couch.   And…….ZZZZZZZZZZZZ!

 

They made it in safely, nephew and his dozing lil penis person.  He and I sat up, briefly chatting and catching up.  He, not quite wound down from their 12 hour drive.  Me, FINALY catching that second wind.  We kept our voices low enough that we were having trouble hearing each other.  But you know who DID manage to hear us…….both MY young penis people.  DAMN IT!!!   Both MY tots wandered out, rubbing sleep from their sparkly little eyes, positively THRILLED to start the new day NOW!  Nuh uh motherfuckers!!!!!  By now, it was approximately 4-ish in the morning and this momma was ready to SLEEP!  So nephew made his way to his slumbering penis person and I hustled mine back to bed as well. 

 

Now, you might think that with all this traveling and waking and busy middle of the night shit would nearly GUARENTEE a later start in the morning for three small penis people.  NOPE!  NOPE!  And uh…..let me check…..NOPE!  They were ready to have fun and revel in the magic that is cousin time.  It took nephew’s young penis person LITERALLY two seconds to acclimate himself to his new friends and they were off and running, past the grown ups and the food cooling on the kitchen table, straight to the magic of the toys in the playroom.

 

A weekend filled with visiting and playing and general boy-shenanigans abounding, both the toddler penis people thoroughly enjoyed EVERY single moment.  There were a few minor bumps along the way, as they learned to maneuver sharing with a new friend and playing with someone they didn’t previously know very well. I am pleased to say that everyone had a great time and we are looking forward to their return trip in  August.

 

But what I discovered during this weekend is something I hadn’t really known before now.  Before now, I’d always thought, MANY MANY  times in my parenting life, is that I would have LOVED to have twins. I used to think it would have been AWESOME to have two shiny little faces to smoochie and love.  Now…..well, I’ve learned that even with two amazing lil penis people who were a sheer joy to be around……that level of energy multiplied by two leaves you positively EXHAUSTED!  No reasonable person could ever be expected to tag-team two toddlers and come out on top.  They will always win, because they have both youth and tenacity on their side….and a partner in crime to back them up.

 

And so, we bid a fond farewell to the nephew and his young penis person and secretly, I thought that I’m lucky that God doesn’t always give you what you want.  And I literally stand and applaud my parent friends with twins.  You have my utmost respect for what you do!

 

 

 

 

Long ago, I used to think I would “someday” want a shit ton of babies.  Understandably, I was young and “someday” seemed like a million years away.  I was naïve enough to believe that motherhood was simple and easy and I would master it entirely.  These days, I’m far more realistic in knowing that motherhood is often painfully difficult and sometimes only having TWO penis people leaves me huddled in a corner, methodically rocking back and forth, waiting for the sweet, peaceful relief that comes with bedtime for the fuck trophies.

With wee penis person’s fourth birthday having just passed and the eight year old penis person turning nine soon after, I quickly found myself in the midst of a penis person birthday party extravaganza.  Each year, I promise myself (and the Dick) that I will tone it down and each year I completely amp up the crazy factor.  THIS year we ONLY invited 17 munchkins and their parents (yes….THIS was toned down).  The older penis person has tons of fantastic friends….the wee penis person has a small handful.  Therefore, I was in the midst of children varying in ages from three to ten.  I’m a sucker for a good party and I’ve never been comfortable with deciding which friends and family to delegate off the list of invites.  So there you go!  I hired the Tumblebus,  set the dial to all things fun and went for it.

Oldest penis person also has a number of friends on the Asperger’s or Autism spectrums.  This made planning a party that was both fun and not-overwhelming a bit difficult.  But I think I managed to do it with some success.  I also wanted the parents of these friends to be able to sit back and relax as much as possible, comfortable in the fact that they were among parents like themselves, in a judgment free zone.  I hope I was successful there as well.  I like to think maybe I was.

Then, in what can only be described as a momma who’s always uber graceful (NOT), I took a dive off said Tumblebus steps and promptly landed hard on the cold concrete.  I was pretty sure I could plainly HEAR my foot bone snap like a winter-dried twig (which is appropriate….since….it IS winter).  OUCH!!!  There I was, trying desperately to hobble around (though I probably SHOULDN’T have been hobbling) and in some fairly intense pain.  There were a few times I quite literally just scooted my ass across the floor (take a moment….build a mental picture and laugh your ass off, I’ll wait).   But I refused (despite the insistence of many of our party-goers) to go to the ER.  THIS was MY babies’ birthday party.  I’m just OCD enough to spend roughly four months planning this shin-dig.  I had upwards of 50 people here.  I was so busy trying to be the hostess with the mostess that I told myself I was fine and that I would go to the ER when the party was officially OVER.   Flash forward four hours later, when I finally permitted my wonderful Sis-In-Law to drive my silly ass to the ER.  BROKEN confirmed!  DOH!

Several times, while at the ER getting xrays, I was asked if there were even a CHANCE I might be knocked up!  AS IF?!?!?!?!?   My super-duper birth control is firmly in place and with only a medical intervention will I produce another tiny fuck trophy.

So why the hell do I find myself…….wondering?!?!?!?  I’m most certainly CONVINCED I’m quite happy with our family of four.  I’ve made sure to secure the birth control that will ensure I won’t get knocked up simply because the Dick was uber charming and I was inebriated on cheap vodka.

But here I am….on the precipice of 40 myself….and feeling mostly nostalgic.  I  miss the smell that comes from a baby freshly bathed.  I miss the cooing.  I miss that moment when they speak their very first word or tumble through their very first step.  I miss stroking that ultra fine baby hair.  The way that a baby looks at YOU!

And then…..I politely tell my uterus to just shut the fuck up and take a beat to let the nostalgia pass.  I don’t even think I really WANT another baby….I just maybe need to get myself a baby fix and snuggle it and bask in all that baby gooeyness.  And then hand that lil ankle biter back on over to its real parents and bid them farewell the very moment it howls from hunger or soiled behind (or simply no reason at all).

Several of my friends are all packing away or donating off their baby items.  Just recently, I had stumbled across wee penis person’s last remaining baby item our house.  I quietly resolved to snap a few photos and then offer it up on Facebook to anyone who might need it.  No sooner had I fully unpacked it and was preparing to photog away, wee penis person spotted it and decidedly claimed IT WAS HIS and he wanted to play in it.  I calmly but firmly told him that it was going to another little baby who needed it more.  He seemed quite unconvinced about whether or not he was ok with this plan.  Instantly, he began to reminisce, as best as a four-year-old can, about being a baby not so very long ago.  We sat and we talked and I was instantly transported to a time and space where he was tiny and helpless.

I’m quite guilty of trying to hold on to his baby-time for far too long.  I only JUST recently, and sort of forcibly, eradicated his precious paci from our lives.  I was incredibly late tossing away, once and for all, his baby bottles and exchanging them for big-boy sippy cups.    HE, my wee penis person who BROKE himself OUT of his crib far too early, was always so busy rushing to meet every activity that would bring him one step closer to being a “big boy”.  Me, always trying to hold on to every last single moment of baby-hood, desperate for anything that would keep him my little baby just a short while longer.

And so, I find myself trying desperately to balance the fact that babies are inherently cute little shits (even when they ACTUALLY shit) but that this is not reason enough to rush head first into generating another baby. I ignore the fact that my uterus is double-dog daring me to put it to good use.   And I calmly tell my uterus once more to JUST SHUT THE FUCK UP and stay empty, thank you very much.

A Mom on a Mission…

It started simply enough.  I was irritated  pissed off and couldn’t seem to get any results.  Frustration growing, I took my angst to the internet and started Googling as if my very life depended on it (which, technically, it does).  CVS Caremark was surely going to be the bane of my existence…and, as I suspected, I wasn’t nearly as alone as I thought I was.  I was promptly faced with hundreds and hundreds of stories that seemed as atrocious as my own.  Some, sadly, even more so.

The internet, for all its proclivity to be a ball of negative nonsense, can be also provide a wonderful opportunity to, quite literally, have the world at your fingertips (stubby little sausage-y fingertips, if I’m being honest).  With just a few taps of the keys, you can easily (or..mostly easily) find out some pretty shitty things about a company.   What began as a Friday night homebound…snuggled up on the couch (or was I curled in the fetal position from anxiety) fingers poised to find a way to make a company pay for all my anger quickly morphed into something I’m still trying to wrap my weary mind around.

What began as one pissed off mom on a mission touched a nerve in…..oh….about 1,100 plus people.  There is nothing more frustrating that banging your head against a proverbial brick wall.  But when you have 1,100 people bashing away with you….you find the pain subsides just the tiniest bit and….screw that wall, you can collectively move a MOUNTAIN! 

While most of the people that have joined me to fight this company are essentially strangers to me, many of them are directly or indirectly connected to The Dick and his job.  It has always been said that the police family is police FAMILY and if you mess with one…..you should prepare to battle them all.  Furthermore, the families of officers are nearly their own entity.  No one understands the frustration of living the life of a law enforcement family like that of a fellow law enforcement family. 

What I’ve discovered is that the problems I was having were in no way just significant to myself and the penis people.  There were hundreds of moms and dads with their own family worries.  Husbands and wives concerned about their own loved one’s health and well being. As the personal stories began pouring in, I was sickened to see the ensuing carnage that swirls daily around this company. I suspect now that it might seem very narrow-minded to think that only I were having these problems. But when you are in the midst of your own battle, its difficult to fathom that there are others.  Its easy to see the world in a very singular way when you are fighting alone.  But when you form a collective group and take a stand……it becomes epic.

As a blogger, I’m often amazed that people still give a shit when I have something to say.  It boggles my mind on a billion levels.  But then I take a breath and keep pushing forward, trying to silence that little voice in my head that says “you’re in way over your head bitch”. 

And so I find myself perched precariously on the precipice of something far larger than myself and my young penis people.  What began as a fight to get my sons’ medications in a timely fashion, void of any unnecessary delays that could be detrimental to their health, has became a living, breathing paradigm of expecting better and settling for absolutely not a damn thing less.

Friday night, it would have been so much simpler to park my ass on the couch and veg away on mindless TV, hoping for the best and prepared do nothing.   But I chose to take a stand.  1,100 plus people joined me.  And that kind of momentum will not just simply fade away.  CVS Caremark needs to understand that they are literally screwing around with peoples’ lives.  They need to be realistic in understanding that people that move mountains make a lot of noise in doing so.  And they should be completely cognizant of the fact that we have a voice now and people are listening.

Thank you, sincerely, to each and every person that has shared this information…..has encouraged others to join us……has offered suggestions and avenues to pursue.

If you would like to find out additional information, please join us at https://www.facebook.com/groups/657228527673770/.  If you have dealt with CVS Caremark, we would love to hear from you.

Diabetes and my child…

Recently, while at the endocrinologist for my own routine Type One Diabetes checkup appointment, my doctor and I were discussing the recent diagnosis of my 3 year old toddler.  I am overwhelmed with his recent diagnosis.  I lose many a nights sleep over what his life will be like.  I anxiously fret over his daily care to manage his disease.  I recognize the fact that I will never be able to blindly trust that family and friends can take care of him, he will not have sleepovers with anyone, without quite a bit of diabetes training. My son’s grandmother wants nothing more than to be educated on all things diabetes related, the shots and the formulas used to figure out his insulin needs, but she finds herself utterly confused and unable to do it properly.   I am often confused as well, even with my own knowledge of this disease.  There is such a stark contrast to the management of adult diabetes and children with diabetes. 

 

I am still a little angry about it all.  And in the deepest, darkest corners of my heart, I am still heartbroken and so incredibly disappointed in my own diabetic self for missing so many of the key signs that would have indicated sooner his tiny little body’s distress.

 

Being Type One Diabetic, I can’t shake the feeling that I SHOULD HAVE KNOWN something wasn’t right.  When he began urinating several times an hour, when my perfectly potty trained child suddenly began soaking himself and his bed SEVERAL times a night, when he had a simply unquenchable thirst that seemed never-ending….I should have known.   When he lost his appetite and his clothes seemed to fall off his too-skinny body, when he seemed listless and lethargic, uninterested in his usual day-to-day routine, when he was screaming from a painful and alarmingly red rash that suddenly took over his groin area and wouldn’t go away….I should have known.  And yet, unwilling to accept what I KNEW might be happening, I tried to reason with myself and find a simple explanation for it all.  He’d been in the throes of a bad winter cold at the time, and my hopeful mind was trying desperately to believe that all these things were related to that.

 

Oh, how very wrong I was.  I KNEW there was something more going on.  And I just cannot find a way to make my heart let go of that indisputable fact. 

 

It was on a simple whim one night, just before his bedtime.  After another hundred trips (or so it seemed) to the bathroom for my young tot, I checked his sugar with my own meter.  Momma was tired and cranky and ready for the peace that a child’s bedtime offers, when a number that flashed across that screen promptly plunged me into a panic I’d never experienced before.  572!  I immediately called our pediatrician’s emergency number, trying to force out an explanation in between breaths that felt so very difficult to take.  I was told to get him to the nearest emergency room NOW!  I instantly felt nausea building within and began to cry.  My husband took the phone, quickly got himself familiar with the instructions and started making the necessary calls to secure a someone to watch our 8 year old while we’d be gone.  I found myself completely unable to wait the 20 minutes it might take my mother-in-law to get there.  I zipped up my precious baby in his winter coat, hoping his pajamas would be enough to keep him warm during our ride and subsequent hospital visit.  In the most calm and controlled voice I could muster, I told my husband to meet us there.  I wasn’t waiting.

 

In the 15 minutes it took me to get to the nearest hospital with a emergency pediatric unit, my son’s blood sugar had steadily continued to climb.  There was no standard waiting in the lobby, there would be no waiting to be triaged and asked all those perfunctory questions.  The pediatrician had called ahead and alerted our arrival with this dire situation and we were promptly ushered right inside.  CRITICALLY HIGH were the words that were repeated over and over and over.  A quick check of his blood sugar once more revealed a number too high for the hospital meter to read.  IV lines were started immediately on tiny little veins that were so weakened by dehydration that it took approximately 12 pokes in various areas of his body to find a usable vein.  They wanted to give it one more try before they would be forced to do a central line. Lucky number 13??  My poor baby had screamed with each and every poke.  He begged me to make them stop, while three strangers in scrubs pinned him to the bed in an effort to get a good vein.  It quite literally broke whatever pieces of my mangled heart that had previously remained in tact.

 

In the end, they managed to get him stable with 24 hours of a PICU visit.  In the end, they tried to ease my mommy guilt by telling me that I’d done the best thing I knew how to do to help him.  In the end, they told me that had I put him to bed that evening without checking his sugar, he would have likely slipped into unconsciousness during the nighttime.  In the end, I’m still so angry that I didn’t react sooner.  In the end, I’m so furious that my son has this horrible diagnosis and there is nothing I can do about it.  This is simply something I didn’t want my son to endure.

 

In the months since Joshua’s diagnosis, we’ve managed to find a way to adequately balance the good times and the bad.  I try to gently remind myself that, while his diagnosis is tough and he has a long life of care ahead of him, there are so many parents out there who’s children are far sicker or terminally ill.  They would likely give anything just to trade me places. 

 

We diligently monitor his blood sugar.  Every two hours during the day and once at 1:00 in the morning to make sure he’s stable until its time to wake up and do it all over again.  Five to six shots a day, depending on how his blood sugar is doing and what he eats.  We have an incredible team of people that help us oversee his care. We were assigned to an amazing Pediatric Endocrinologist and his fantastic nursing staff who are available to us nearly 24-7.  We have such caring and wonderful staff of teachers and a nurse at his preschool who have managed to catch some pretty severe low blood sugars and react swiftly and sufficiently, effectively saving his young life.   We’ve encouraged him to learn to test his own blood sugar, which he has mastered like a champion.  Even at the tender age of three, I think its important for him to understand how important his care will be and I’m certain that he’s not at all too young to learn to manage certain aspects of his own care (with our unwavering supervision, of course).  He’s slowly learning to understand when he’s “not feeling right” and what it might mean.  He’s learning that its not acceptable to pretend he feels his blood sugar is low in an effort to get a piece of candy (he’s tried it a few times…and discovered that pretending will only get him an unnecessary poke on the finger to make sure he’s ok).

 

In the end…..I’ve slowly begun to accept my son’s diagnosis. I’ve realized that I’m lucky that I’m diabetic and knew the symptoms of a body going into Diabetic Ketoacidosis.  I’m count myself lucky that I had a meter on hand to provide the information I needed.  I have started to give myself the space I need to feel what I feel. I understand that I need to forgive myself for trying to deny what I already knew.  I’m not there yet, but I’m hopeful I’ll get there sooner rather than later. 

 

I’ve also discovered that, in facing my son’s diagnosis and the myriad of things required to manage his Diabetes correctly, I’m also working harder towards improving my own control over my Type One Diabetes.  I am cognizant of the fact that I need to be an example of diligent care and proper management.  I must lead by example and encourage him to take this disease as seriously as it should be taken. I need to make sure he knows, in an age appropriate way, that its quite literally a matter of life and death.  I am always hopeful that there will be a cure in his lifetime, if not in my own, and that one day there will be an end to Diabetes.

 

 

I’ve never been a fan of men that cry.  THERE….I said it!   

 

Not even in movies…….not even when they’ve hurt themselves pretty badly or are nearly killed……I can almost stomach it if they’ve recently had a loved one that died horrifically.  I definitely cannot tolerate it in real life.  I’m certainly a girly-girl.  But I don’t even really like it when **I** cry.  I HAVE cried before, many times.  I just don’t particularly LIKE it.  I generally prefer to internalize my anger or hurt and project it outward to the world as straight up bitch mode.  THAT’S what makes me happy.  Tears DO NOT.

 

I’m kind of an old soul with equally old ideas about the inherent differences between men and women.  I think women are genetically predisposed to fits of tears….sometimes even when we REALLY don’t want to be.  We’re just hard wired to feel our feels on an purely emotional level.  Alternately, men have always been fueled by hard core testosterone.  Men don’t generally cry.  They grunt and they scratch their balls and then they walk away.  And that’s almost precisely how I like ‘em.

 

I’d recently had a moment where I’d hurt a penis someone’s feelings.  I’ll be the first to admit I’d been a little harsh.  I’d expected that this would eventually lead to a conversation between us.  What I hadn’t expected was for there to be tears.  And not from me.  I almost didn’t even care felt bad….but part of me also wanted to offer up a complimentary tampon and a hankie and tell him to be a man and stop with the unnecessary water works.  Which, ironically, made ME feel like maybe I had a penis for being so insensitive.  Mother fucker.  When did I maybe grow an imaginary penis.

 

The point is, I’ve always been comfortable in those cozy spaces where the emotional roles of men and women were clearly defined.  Even the Dick knows better than to come at me whining and crying like a bitch, because I will generally tell him that I am quite happy being the girl in our relationship. 

 

Harsh…..maybe a little.  But I’m generally not in the mood to forsake my own feelings of “EWWWW, person with a penis, are you really crying” in an effort to make that person with a penis feel ok.  I’m just barely able to pretend to be interested in the reason for their in angst.  But NOW I have to pretend to feel bad that they are crying. Nuh Uh!

Just typing that, I could swear I just felt my imaginary penis get bigger.

 

Have I maybe been so consumed by the testosterone wafting through my home so long that its infiltrated me to the my very core and made ME equally insensitive.  Have I been hanging with these penis people and the Dick so long that I’m slowly morphing into ONE OF THEM?!?!?!?!  Honestly, I’m barely only slightly concerned about it.

 

ANNNNNDDD……My pretend penis just became enormous! 

 

 

 

 

I have always contended that living with penis people and the Dick can be incredibly gross.  Like…….Gross with a capital G.  Like GAH-ROSS!  Friends that have non-penis people insist that girls are just as gross too.  I will continue to dispute this vehemently.  Furthermore, I believe that penis people and non-penis people are BOTH gross, but in very different and distinguished ways. 

 

Exhibit A :  My two nutty penis people and the Dick like to play a game called “Butt Face”.  I promise you that it sounds JUST as stupid as it actually is.  The object of the game is to find any unsuspecting person (NEVER momma…..cause momma is ALWAYS watching everything AND everyone diligently) and sit on their face and fart…..THEN wiggly-giggly thy ass around whilst taking great care to distribute the funky skunky stank evenly. 

 

There are no clearly defined winners or loser……well…..maybe they are ALL losers.  Because even if you WIN you’ve still only managed to wipe your stinky ass all over the other person and forced them to smell Yo ass.  LOSER with an L-shaped finger.  I am thoroughly confused as to what the attraction is with this particular game.  It just seems like a whole lotta nonsense and I clearly just….don’t….GET…it.  But as sure as I’m sitting here typing this right now…..there is a Butt Face game a-brewing amongst the penis people and the Dick.  They are literally twitching with anticipation of Butt Facing one another.  And I’m just shocked that we haven’t had far more cases of pink eye in this overly Butt Faced house.

 

Exhibit B : Boogers……..they are EVERYWHERE.  And not just in the normal places where you would expect to find them, like a nose or the sleeve of a dirty shirt.  Often, the penis people find it Hi-FUCKING-larious to mine their nose gold and then promptly transplant it on to someone else.  FOR FUN!  I could literally paper the house with tissue on every available surface and it would matter not.  They would still deposit that funk-a-junk on one another…….and then promptly scamper off, laughing at their amazing ability to transplant their boogers so quickly and efficiently.  And when they aren’t depositing those filthy lil booger buggers on one another (or ACK! me)……they wipe them on walls……on floors…….on toys.  I once went in to do my monthly decontamination of Nick’s room and backed into something hard, sharp and poking the shit outta my ass on the wall behind me.  What to my wondering eyes should appear???????  Well, I can promise you it wasn’t Santa and his eight tiny reindeer.  Had it been Santa and those rascally reindeer, I probably would have been less shocked. 

 

NOPE!  This particular penis person had created an art museum worthy sculpture of boogers on the wall.  And then, as all boogers must obviously do, it dried up into a pointy lil rock of boogers.  I can only say that I assume boogers must obviously dry up.  I really have no clue.  I’ve never had a booger hang around ME long enough to know this for sure.  In my attempt to eradicate this particular mound of boogers from the wall, I broke a tissue-encased fingernail AND lost all faith in the idea that my penis people would one day be productive members of society.  Staring at that disgusting booger…..and half thinking it was snarling right back at ME…..I resigned myself to the fact that I’m likely going to be caring for them long into adulthood.  They will probably live in my basement, wiping booger bombs on the walls.

 

Exhibit C : Why must they ALWAYS touch their damn penis?????  I can only assume that the touching of personal junk in strictly a penis person thing (and NOT because they are the ones with a penis).  Seldom have I seen a girl touching her girly bits unconsciously.  Not even BOOBS get this much unyielding attention.  And boobs are generally bigger, softer, squishier and FUN (sorry, couldn’t bring myself to say FUNNER)!  Ok, so to be fair, I most definitely don’t HAVE a penis, so maybe I’m just missing the obvious attraction here. 

 

But seriously…..  The Dick and the penis people spend a great deal of time mindlessly handling their nether-regions.  It borders on embarrassing (AS IF they could be embarrassed).  As it relates to Exhibit B….I worry that one day they will be arrested for erroneously touching themselves in public and will face weiny wagger charges and then I will be the mom of a person on the sex offender list.  NO FUCKING WAY! 

 

The other day wee penis person was having a playdate with my friend’s daughter.  Her lil not-penis person came upstairs and informed us that wee penis person had HIS penis out and about in the playroom.  OK….they’re three.  It wasn’t DEF-CON FIVE worthy.  And I correctly guessed he was probably touching it and it managed to escape.  So I bellowed for wee to bring him and HIS wee upstairs PRONTO.  Then I promptly told him if his penis didn’t remain in his pants where it belonged I would chop it off and throw it away and he would be forced to urinate from his mouth forever-more.  OK…..so I have no idea where all the Lorena Bobbit nonsense dropped from, nor do I have the slightest idea if he even really understood what I was telling him.  But looked appropriately scared and sorry and there was no other instance of a penis being displayed.  SCORE for the momma!

 

And so…..I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I will frequently be yelling for the penis people to stop Butt Facing/Boogering/Touching Their Penis for the rest of my remaining sane days.  I will promise myself that I will try to instill a little bit of dignity of self in them….though I will probably fail.  They are…..after all……a Dick and some penis people.  They will always do gross shit and I will always bitch about it.

 

Yes…I am most certainly aware that I’ve typed that incorrectly.

When you live with the Dick, who is perpetually gloomy and doomy, you have to face the fact that, for him, every single moment is a catastrophe waiting to happen.  I will say that, being married to the Dick for the last billion years or so (give or take a few), I understand his position here.  He is a police officer with seventeen years in a city that has the highest murder rate per capita, where folks kill one another for fun, where good people hide in their homes out of fear and children are murdered and no one seems to care.  That’s a fuck ton of gloomy doomy-ness to see day in and day out.  And so, you learn to try to combat his gloomy doomy ass with a never-ending dose of straight up optimism.

I used to attribute his constant foreboding to only his job. But I’ve come to see that the Dick and his momma are so similar in that they share this inherent need to be in a constant state of waiting for the “other shoe to drop”.  It can be mentally exhausting to deal with them both at the same time , trying to make them see the bright side when they are insisting on seeing so much negativity.  It is, mostly, an effort in futility to drag them kicking and screaming to the happy side of the world.

What does all this mean to me right at this very moment…..on the precipice of a brand new year???  I’ve always loved the beginning of a new year.  There are a multitude of opportunities to make your life amazing.  Its a moment to reflect on all the things the previous year brought you, whether it be pain or sadness or never-ending joy and prosperity.  And whether your previous year was good……horrible…..or teetering precariously somewhere in between, you have to be cognizant of the fact that YOU MADE IT THROUGH and you’re still here to talk about it.

2013 was quite an amazing year for myself and the penis people.  And even if some of the examples that come to mind SEEMED difficult and jam-packed with strife…..I am nothing if always the eternal optimist.  I accept that shitty shit happens to good people, I understand that sometimes life sucks a giant bag of smelly donkey balls and then…..I pick myself up….brush myself off…..and move along.

The very beginning of 2013 found me preparing to raise money and shave my head for St. Baldricks and pediatric cancer research.  I spent the first two months of 2013 wondering if I really was prepared for the new, bald me.  By March, my head was shaved and I was summarily overwhelmed with how awesome the people in my life are…..because so many gave so much and it was simply moving.  As well, I came to the realization that ITS ONLY HAIR.  It grows back (slowly……oh so very slowly) and you move along.  But for all the kids whom Cancer has stolen….for the kids who survived but lost their entire childhood while they fought…..for the families who’s lives will never be the same, me shaving my head and the money that was so graciously donated because of it means SO MUCH more.  It means that ONE DAY there will be more research for cures.  And maybe…..just ONE DAY….there won’t be a child who dies of Cancer.

Middle of 2013, it would have appeared that a black storm cloud was hanging out, chilling just over my head.  Myself and my intern innocently parked our vehicles outside our office building on a busy nearby street.  We were working inside, toiling away at the days tasks.  (((CUE LOUD CRASH HERE)))  Stunned, we wandered outside to find our PARKED vehicles were not where we’d left them.  TOTALED…..BOTH!  It was simply to preposterous to comprehend.  But ya know what……..it surely could’ve been worse.  We could have been IN those mangled heaps of metal left behind.  Someone could have been seriously injured or killed.  But it was ONLY a car.  And while the Dick couldn’t help himself but try to make me feel badly about it, the eternal optimist in me refused to let it shake my core.

Yep…it sucked to have to go out and get another used car.  I had fleeting moments of “Dude…this wasn’t even MY damn fault”.  But I couldn’t help but realize that I was lucky that I could AFFORD to get another car only a few days later.  So when, two weeks after that crazy crash took my ride, I found myself starting my new(er) car and hearing some deafening sound that I was pretty damn sure wasn’t supposed to be there, I had to take a moment to settle myself.  Within moments at the repair shop, I was informed that someone stole my damn catalytic converter.  MOTHER FUCKER…….Really?!?!?!?   This pill was just a little harder to swallow….mostly because I couldn’t even fathom going home and telling the Dick.  Part of me just wanted to hope that whoever stole it was using the $50 they’d earned (on a part that would cost upwards of $600 for repair) was using the money to feed their hungry kids.  And yet another part of me couldn’t help but laugh.  Seriously…….laughed my ass off.  At this point, I figured that there was no where to go but up.  This time, the Dick handled it well (I personally think he was just too shocked to respond in his normal fashion).  And I’m lucky that I know some pretty amazing people who do car repairs and let me make payments.

Finally….October found me desperately worried for the wee penis person.  After one week of showing some symptoms of having some pretty severe diabetic issues, I decided one night just before his bedtime to spot check his blood sugar (being Diabetic myself, I used my own meter).  I was only slightly surprised to find it was 572…..critically HIGH.  I suppose its safe to say now that I knew in my heart that all that extra pissing and thirst wasn’t normal.  And so….instead of tucking my wee penis person into bed and settling in for the night, I was hauling ass to the Emergency Room.  In the 20 minutes it took me to drive, his number climbed well over 600.  While I sat, helplessly watching them work on my baby and berating myself for not noticing…..not responding…..faster, doctors told me that we were LUCKY.

 

Hmmmm….had I heard that right?  Yep…I sure did.  Had I put him to bed like I’d first planned to, he would likely not have woke.  At the rate his tiny body was producing all that excess sugar, he would have slipped into a diabetic coma in the night.  Damn right, I KNEW we were lucky!  So while the Dick fumed at God for bringing Diabetes to our son, I was thanking God for have the foresight to check, for being LUCKY enough to be Diabetic myself and having a meter ready to use.   I lay that night in the PICU with my wee penis person, trying to find a comfortable spot in the hospital bed designed for toddlers, stroking his blond hair while he slept and knowing that my attempting to sleep would be useless, and I counted my blessings.  Yes….it would suck for my child to have Diabetes at the tender age of three.  But he was STILL HERE……….and everything else would just work itself out.

And so, I look to a new year with the clarity of a mom who tries to see the brighter side of things.  I understand fully that life is always gonna be full of shitty shit.  But you have to be willing to look beyond the shitty and find the happy. I promise you that EVERY shitty thing has some sliver of silver lining.  So when things seem bleak and every silver lining seems to have a cloud perched right beyond it, pick yourself up….remind yourself that there are SO many others who would give their left tit to have your problems and then move along.

Happy New Year peckerheads……..may your 2014 days and nights be filled with peace….love……and all the booty calls you’d like.

So…..its Tuesday night and I would normally be sitting my happy ass in front of the TV to watch Sons of Anarchy.  But….its mid-season break (when the FUCK did THIS shit start happening) so I got nothing to do.  I have a theory that the reason so many babies are born in the fall is because so many people were bored in the winter….and there wasn’t anything good on TV because the ALL good shows were on hiatus at the same damn time…..its cold….and snuggling turns into……..bow-chicka-wow-wow!   Hello…..fall babies!

 

I won’t bore you with all the gory details of this show….one of my favorites.  But I will use it to transition right into this blog.  The most important fact about this particular show……..families are seriously FUCKED UP!  I mean…THIS specific family is far more fucked up than most (what with all the murdering of one another and death threats and beatdowns)…but in general….families are generally pretty fucked.

 

Of course, my own is no exception.  LOVE the shit outta them all…..would kill for any single one of them.  But we are a spastic lil bunch of nutballs.

 

Very recently, I had the opportunity to make amends with my baby brother after many years of not speaking much to one another.  The shit that we’d let divide us was going no where and we needed to get closer again more than we needed to hold on to old hurts.  I’m actually pretty damn proud of the two of us.  I’d like to say that maybe we’ve both grown from it all (mentally, spiritually, whatever).  But what I really suspect was happening is that we are SO much alike that we’d lost the shock value of dickering with each others brains.

 

He sent me a message……I took a beat to really put my feelings in check and determine if what we were angry about was REALLY worth the not having him around.  And even though I consider myself a perpetually evil shrill of a bitch……I couldn’t think of one really good reason to keep the shit going.  I wanted my brother back.  PERIOD.

 

My family :  We are mostly Sicilian in origin…Little bit of Russian just for shits and giggles.   We fight……we argue…..we are painfully honest with our words.  A few of us have even thrown a few ACTUAL blows at one another.

 

**SHIT….maybe we’re IRISH**

 

The point is……..we are still HERE!  We love with a fire that runs just as deep and just as strong as our anger.

 

On the flip side…….The Dick’s family :  Wonderful people, every damn one of them.  They love hard too…but differently than my own.  They kiss and hug and say “I love you” often.  My family mostly hugs by accident or when someone dies and we’re at a funeral (where hugging is expected).  We don’t SAY “I love you”…..we say “fuck off”…but its meant to be endearing and loving.

 

There is a very specific contrast to the way The Dick’s family deals with conflict and the way my family deals with conflict.  They are far more passive than aggressive. They prefer to stew over issues than to thrust them out into the light of day and deal.   They are quiet and reserved and this makes it difficult to deal directly with my loud and abrasive family on a regular basis.  When the Dick and I got married, my new Sis In Law was literally foisting Xanex on everyone like it was breath mints…..and I’m still not certain if it was because my family was making everyone nuts (in a good way….but nuts) or if the level of noise resonating from my mostly Italian family was pushing their side right over the damn edge.

 

My wonderful MIL once spent an afternoon with my loud Italian mother and her FIVE equally loud Italian sisters, plus ME and MY loud sister.  My MIL, whose generally very quiet and waits ever so patiently for an invitation to join a conversation by way of pause or quiet…….NEVER got a word in edge-wise.  By waiting for a lull to be included…..she promptly found herself entirely on the outside of the conversations the entire time.  She and I discussed this afterwards……she……disappointed that she hadn’t really felt a part of our day together…..hopelessly lost in the plethora of yelled conversations swirling around her.  For the very first time…..I had the opportunity to REALLY see how it might be hard for an introvert to mesh with my big extroverted family.  To be certain…it will likely NEVER change a damn thing….but I’m hoping that there is kindness in AT LEAST the understanding, right?  Shut up….just nod your head and agree, m’kay.

 

With the holidays fast approaching, I have to say….I’m looking forward to time with both sides.  I have the opportunity to enjoy the loud of my own family and the silence of the Dick’s family.  Spending time with both always poses each a unique set of challenges.  I’ve learned that I must tone down my crazy for the Dick’s family and amp up the crazy for my own.  I’ve learned that trying to mesh the two families together leaves everyone slightly off-kilter and feeling out of sorts and therefore, embrace separate times with separate families.  Everyone can only handle so much of the other.

 

My penis people are a wonderfully glorious lil mixture of both families.  Loving and hugging and smoochies always…..but their love is also measured in the number of well-placed bruises that they leave one another with.  They bicker and fight…..and then generally hug it out and move on to happier things.  I’m hoping, in the blending of the introverted quiet of one side and the extroverted loudness of the other, that there will be a happy balance that will make them truly great people that I will one day thrust upon the world.   LOOKOUT WORLD!! I hope that  they will know sometimes you speak your mind and speak it loudly…..but will also understand that there is strength in their quiet resolve.