Sunday, July 26, 2009

i ran my dad's car into a guard rail

Sometimes I like to hear other people tell me that they are having a hard time because it makes it easier to be having a hard time myself.

Make sense?

You see, I used to think that because I am a Christian and can claim God's promises by calling Him on that cheezy heavenly telephone, day or night, I shouldn't feel sad or depressed, EVER.

It makes me feel so much better when other people (especially women) who are in the same life stage as I am tell me that life is hard for them, too.

These last few weeks have been horrible. I don't know why; probably something akin to the sickness you get after finals in college. You've been studying and cramming and not sleeping and now you can rest. So you get sick.

God (I do believe it's God, I do!) has brought to my attention that I spend the majority of my time trying to make others happy. My lovely Mexican-looking husband told me the other night that I need to spend more time taking care of myself.

"But that's selfish!" I thought.

And then I thought about it some more, and realized that when I don't let people know what I need and want, I get angry and frustrated and depressed. I take it out on those I love most, quite passive agressively. I expect people to guess my desires - like some weird human Rubix cube.

Case in point: this trip to Colorado. Many times someone in the group of 47 relatives was going to go off hiking, or go out to eat, or do something fun, and I would have rather stayed at the condo instead of dragging the kids along. I knew one of the kids needed a nap but went against my better judgement. They screamed the whole time, on many separate occassions, and I started resenting other people.

DUMB.

I need to tell people what I need or they will not know what it is that I need.

This week, I need the following:

1. lots of trips to Target
2. no Drudge Report
3. a sign from God that He definitely does exist (no, a miracle performed by this guy will not do, and as an aside, once when I was 13 or so my brother and I were watching him on channel 27 and he didn't know he was on tv and he said the "f" word four times. top THAT, why dontcha...)
4. lots of trips to the playground
5. lots of Diet Coke

What the hell is up with my aversion to the phone? I hate the phone...I almost despise it.

Did I tell you that I smashed my dad's mini van into a guard rail on the way home from the mountains?

Everyone cringed. I started crying and ruing (is that a word) the day I was born.

He looked at it and said, "Ah, it's just a car."

That's the kind of Christian I want to be.

Friday, July 24, 2009

numbers

It is slightly amazing that a family reunion that started in 1981 with 19 people has ballooned, 27 years later, to 47 people. (that is a whole heck of a lot of broken condoms, people.)

My father and his 4 siblings started the reunion and decided to meet for 1 week every 2 years in the Colorado mountains.

Is it amazing to you that EVERY single descendant made it to the reunion this year? That there are NO fights, and that everyone gets along splendidly?

We split up into groups of 4 to fix the morning and evening meals, so it ends up costing each person $25 for a week of food. Scott and I fed our family of 4 for $50 this week.

a numbers breakdown of the attendees:

2 babies
3 two year olds
3 four year olds
3 six year olds
1 preteen
2 teenagers
4 twenty-somethings
14 thirty-somethings
3 forty-somethings
2 fifty-somethings
8 sixty-somethings
2 seventy-somethings
1 matriarch who is 97 and unable to come this year.

We went out for "cousin's night" the other night and I managed to:

1. Embarass my brothers by telling them they need to settle down and get married
2. Grab my girl cousins' boobs and tell them they need to be models
3. Get all my drinks free, because my cousins paid for them
4. Ask my cousin Luke, in front of his girlfriend, when he was planning on getting married
5. watch my cousin Jackie dance on the bar
6. watch my cousin Audrey sing an opera for everyone at the bar
7. Tell the bartender he looks like a small Irish leprechaun
8. Hope the bartender didn't garnish my drink with roofies

what was the point of this post?

Oh, yeah. My family is a freak of nature.

We all like each other, a lot. No one is ready to go home.

Pictures to come.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

never

I finally outgrew, at age seven, the pretending that a watermelon Jolly Rancher was actually a retainer stuck to the roof of my mouth.

I also outgrew my affinity for the soap opera "Passions".

I don't think I'll ever outgrow the feeling of awe I get when we drive into Colorado mountains.

I don't think I want to.

Friday, July 17, 2009

in the pit

I am currently in the pit, waiting for deliverance.

I don't know what has triggered it, but the OCD is worse than it ever has been before. I cannot get my mind off of a particular track, and all I want to do is sleep.

This, I suppose, is what frustrates me when people tell me, "Oh, you claim to have OCD, but I think everyone focuses on one thing sometimes. That's human nature."

Yes, it is. It is human nature. But when I can't do the dishes or watch tv or go for a walk and think of anything OTHER than this thing for two weeks now, it has become a huge problem. I just want to sleep and I don't want to interact with anyone and I wake up short of breath and anxious.

I had an emergency meeting with Shrink Lady, and she told me that there has been so much going on in the last 6 months that has been most decidedly out of my control. So right now, now that we are moved and almost settled, etc., the steam is coming out. And this is the way it is coming out. My mind is desperately trying to control SOMETHING, and that something is the thing that I am obsessing about. Many things remind me of it, or trigger it, and it's like I can't escape it.

When I get into funks like this I can see how horrible a mental illness really is. I cannot see things clearly and it frustrates me. I don't want to function this way.

I also think, on top of the physiologic part of it, there is a spiritual undercurrent.

I haven't read my Bible in a LOOONG time, and I do think that Satan is attacking me where I am most vulnerable. And he is loving it.

Yesterday a dear friend came over, and we sat and talked and talked while our kids made things thud upstairs. I asked her if she ever feels tired, or just really really old, or if sometimes she believes that God doesn't exist.

Yes, yes, all of those things. Of course all of those things. She buried her 3 month old a few months ago.

Funny thing, though, SHE was the one who encouraged me.

I have trouble reconciling the current nature of things with a God who cares. On top of this current depression, things are sour.

Where is my Bible?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

don't take me to a party

Oh my word - yesterday we went to a birthday party at the most amazing house. You know, those houses you see in a magazine but aren't really sure they exist beyond paper pulp? If I had my camera on me, I would have taken some photos.

You walk in and the floor plan is completely open. No front rooms or anything, just one huge area to live in. SO cool! I swear every piece of furniture was pottery barn, or some imported thing. Huge televisions, rows and rows of windows facing the woods, a completely separate living area downstairs with another kitchen, etc... the walk-in closets were the size of my living room AND dining room. Oh my gosh, this house was AMAZING!

There is a sitting area in the master with flat-screen AND fireplace and a wall of windows overlooking the walking trail and woods. All it needed was the bearskin rug. Hubba, hubba. And it's all decorated so amazingly.

The kids were spilling their "tea" on the freshly upholstered chairs during the tea party and my friend Stephanie was as cool as a cucumber.

I love people who don't take their posessions too seriously.

So.

You knew I couldn't take the tots to a princess tea-party birthday party without some drama, right?

Right.

First off, we have this hoopdie of a car that runs on coal, I swear it is that old. The doors don't even match the body, and it was missing a rearview mirror because Scott ran into a gate in his haste to leave work. There is no air conditioner in the car because we are too cheap to replace it.

So. Let's review. I was driving in a car with no air conditioner for 45 minutes, and then realized a road was closed and I was going the wrong way. I went the other way, but then realized I was about 3.2 miles away from a permanent position by the side of the road. By the time we got to the house, my kids looked like they just swam the English Channel, they were THAT soaking wet with sweat.

I got the kids out of the car and Asher hadn't had a nap yet so he was screaming his tiny little gonads off.

The door opened and I realized this was a princess dress-up party. The hostess didn't know our new address (no fault of her own - she asked for our address, and I am an idiot and forgot to give it to her), so Lucy was the only kid without a princess dress on. The boys were all adorably dressed as Spiderman or the guy from the Incredibles.

OK, so, Lucy wanted no part of the tea party until it was almost over. They served little one inch peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and cheetos and cupcakes. SO cute. and everyone got their own little porcelain tea set.This, consequently, made me feel like an idiot for giving the golden-haired birthday girl ten bucks and a lollipop and some Barbie stickers. Dude, whatever happened to the '70s, when you got some new black paper for your broken Lite Brite on your birthday and thought you had won the lottery?

Asher was in the area where they had little kitchens set up, and he was pretending he was cooking. Then, he grabbed my Diet Coke and tried to drink it while I was admiring the walls.

Diet Coke all over the white rug.

AWESOME.

I grabbed the wipes out of my overflowing purse and tried to dab at the Diet Coke, but it wasn't working. I confessed to the hostess that Asher had just dumped Diet Coke on the rug and she said, "Oh, we have dumped so many things on those rugs. No big deal at all!"

So then, after the "sorry I spilled a caramel-covered liquid all over your $800 rug incident", I was all concerned that I was eating the food too quickly. Everyone else was eating casually and I was snarfing it down. I didn't even feed Asher, and someone else was helping Lucy.

CLASSY.

So then the hostess announced that all the kids should get their swimming suits on, and I thought, "CRAP." I didn't know we were swimming, so didn't bring a suit for my kids and could just SEE total meltdown time coming to a 4 and 2 year old near me.

Lucy needed to be catheterized, so I told our hostess that we had to go, but this was an awesome birthday party. (it was!)

I also asked her where I could find the nearest gas station and imagined myself five minutes in the future, on a rural road watching cows mating, my kids singing songs of sorrow in the backseat before they expired of heat exhaustion.

I also wondered in my mind, queen of class that I am, if I could snag some sandwiches for my husband back home.

Oh, he married a hell of a girl.

I'm off to watch "I Didn't Know I Was Pregnant for Nine Whole Months" on the Learning Channel while I sew some dice to hang on my car's rearview mirror.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

what he's REALLY thinking about at the G-8


don't steal Jelly Belly

Yesterday I went to Target with a friend. We wandered the aisles mainly because we needed to get out, and I decided to go and get some candy from the bulk candy aisle.

There I stood, minding my own business, just tryin' to get some candy, when I realized the lady next to me with the Prada purse was stealing candy. STEALING CANDY. She was a total soccer mom; dressed in a soccer skirt and tennies that most likely cost more than the monthly payment on my house. 

I looked at her, she looked at me, fudge balls in hand, poised to put them in her purse, and then she suddenly became very interested in the jelly belly sours to her left.  

This chick belonged on Oprah. You know, "Millionaire Housewives who shoplift for fun..."

So, anyway, I really wanted to say to her, "Five finger discount, right?"

or...

"Shoplifting candy? Really?"

or...

"Did you know that if you sold that purse on Craigslist you could probably afford the candy?"

but instead I turned tail to find my friend and yelled at her, "Hey, Katie! The world has gone nuts when people are stealing candy from Target!"

That was oddly satisfying, because the lady left, tail-under-legs, and I could choose my Jelly Belly soda-flavored jelly beans in peace.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

way of things

A new house groans in unexpected ways, ways that gives its new owner pause:

How does this oven work?
Why isn't the fridge cold?

A new house takes years to know; maybe that's what makes me uncomfortable. Sitting in my chair,

wondering:

Will I know this place as well as I knew the last? Will I like it as much? Feel a little lost when I leave it?

Boxes and mail forwards and new faucets.

So much has happened in the recent past that I recoil a bit, touching parts of a house I don't yet know.

That's always the way of things, feeling a little lost when you leave.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

14 things to do when you leave home.

1. Have the people moving into your house waiting in their truck on the street while you and 9 of your closest family members run around, trying to fit 3 square blocks of stuff into a 26 foot truck, in 30 minutes.

2. Have the people moving into your house leave their cats in your basement. Then, have your sister in law's nephew tell you that one of the cats has escaped.

Watch your husband FREAK THE HECK OUT.

3. Tell the people moving into your house your life story, while they puff lazily on cigarettes.

4. Introduce the people moving into your house to all of the neighbors. (Hear your husband groan, however inaudibly.)

5. Try to find a place for the spoons and spatulas, and have your daughter ask you, "Mommy, where are you putting the spanking spoons?" It's all about perspective.

6. Forget the utensils so everyone has to eat KFC sides with their hands. (Remind yourself to purposely forget the utensils next time, just to watch this again.)

7. Wear your kids out so splendidly that they curl up in the fetal position on the new house's hall floor.

8. Don't change your children's diapers for seven hours, so that they actually have to beg you for new Huggies.

9. Take too much time wiping out the freezer at the old house so that your husband has to usher you out the door and tell you that new memories will be made at the new house.

Cry anyway.

10. Feed the kids popsicles in the front yard, look up and down the street, take a reallydeepbreathandswallowtears.

11. Wonder what the heck you are doing.

12. Fall in love with your new place, revel in the "oohs" and "aahs" of your family.

13. Revel in this chaotic, hectic moment. Breathe it in. Thank God He gave you these wonderful, imperfect people, with huge hearts and strong arms to help you celebrate.

(Celebrating is moving boxes, did you know?)

13. Lie wide awake next to your very tired husband in your new master bedroom under a new ceiling fan.

Watch the moonlight dripping down the walls and onto your toes.

14. Let the smile overtake your face.