Scaring Jehovah’s Witnesses While You’re Trying to Stalk the Mailman

Amazon is one of my biggest guilty pleasures in life. You can get on there, pile all these things into your online shopping cart, check out, and boom, they ship it right to your doorstep. It’s amazing. No more getting dressed and running to eight places only to find out no one has it, no cashiers secretly judging you while you check out, and no making accidental eye contact with people crazier than you or trying to avoid people you’d rather not talk to. It’s amazing.

According to the almighty Amazon, a package I ordered should have arrived yesterday by eight.

It didn’t.

Being a time-sensitive shipment, I contacted amazon and let them know if it hadn’t arrived by morning, I would need a refund so I could go to a store and buy what I needed. The next morning, I get up and drag my tired ass to the post office.

The package had arrived, but it was out with the carrier. The same carrier who won’t leave my packages at my door like most do…probably because they’re annoyed by my love of amazon and are tired of lugging me packages and have decided to pay me back by making me pick them up in person. The post office will be closed by the time the carrier makes it back with the package, so I can’t pick it up later and no, they can’t call the carrier to see where they’re at so I can meet with them for it.

My only option is to go find the carrier myself and get the package. They helpfully told me a general route area for me to wander around in looking for someone they really couldn’t give me a description for other than they will be carrying a mail bag and be dressed for the weather.

Yay me.

So I’m off to stalk the mailman in this area. I’m driving down a main road, looking for the mail truck or the mailman himself, and see a young, clean-cut looking man with a black official-looking coat on, a messenger bag, and a black toboggan with the little poof at the top and a small symbol on the front of it.

I immediately jerk my car to the curb, roll down the passenger window, and yell, “hey!” a little louder than I’d intended, but it worked. I got his attention. He jumps way up in the air and dashes over the other side of the sidewalk in a hurry. Whoopsie.

“I’m so sorry to bother you like this, but I’m desperately trying to pick up a package and they said it was out with you.”

The guy looks at me like I’m absolutely bonkers. To be honest, I don’t blame him. I can now see that the symbol on his hat is the Jehovah’s Witness sign.

I panic. I admit it. All I can do is yell, “Sorry, go on about your business!” and swerve back into traffic while laughing maniacally. Because what else can you do when you’ve scared the poor guy half to death over something he has no idea about?

So I’m back on the hunt. This time, I see the mail truck pulled over to the side of the road so I just pulled in behind it and I’ll just wait for him to come back to the truck. Great plan, right?

Except the truck suddenly lights up and takes off before I even have a chance to scramble out of my car.

Shit. So I hit the gas and follow it, taking a right at the light and sailing along behind it.

I’m not so lucky at the next light. I hit red and start cussing, keeping my eye on him so I don’t lose him. Fortunately, he turns into the parking lot of the store right after the light and gets out to go inside. Yes! Some luck after all!

Only…not. Because as soon as I pull in and get behind him again he hops back into the truck and takes off. So we’re back on the road and I’m following him again, only this time it’s through a residential neighborhood and he’s making all these turns and I’m just trying to keep up and not die while I’m living my life like some bumbling idiot in a spy movie.

Finally he pulls over, so I jerk to a stop behind him and rush to his window just in case it’s a trap to lure me into feeling comfortable. I walk up to his vehicle and politely tap on his window to get his attention.

At least that’s what I thought I did.

Judging from the way he jumped two feet into the air and ducked down in his seat, and from my crazy-haired and wild-eyed reflection in that window, I don’t think he perceived the situation the way I did at first. He looked more like he was considering throwing his wallet at me and crying until I went away.

But in the end, after scaring some poor religious guy and the crazy car chase the other guy didn’t even know he was in, I got the package.

Thank you very much!

Advertisements

On the Meaning of Messy

I am not a good housekeeper. For me, the struggle is real – trying to keep food on the table and lights on, trying to keep everybody in clean clothes, trying to keep up with the cooking, the dishes, scrubbing the toilets and the shower, trying to keep my kids clean and their rooms somewhat manageable, trying to keep my sanity (oh wait, that was gone YEARS ago)…it all gets overwhelming.

There are days I seriously want to turn into one of those People of Wal-Mart memes, where I don’t give a hoot if I go out in my ratty pajamas and haven’t brushed my hair and I’m dragging children on leashes while I buy a cartful of liquor, frozen pizza, and chicken nuggets. And pudding, because that’s the good stuff.

I don’t think I’ve seen the entirety of my dining room table in a month. My husband plays Xbox constantly, and the entire area around the tv looks like some weird biological experiments have gone down considering all the gauze and bandage supplies laying around over there, and then the dog decided to get a moth that hid in some napkins someone left in my side table, so now there’s shredded napkin all over the place like redneck confetti.

This is my life. It’s a mess, and I have no idea where to even start on it. I could clean the napkin mess up, but in doing that I see that trash needs taken out. When I pull out the bag, I notice someone dumped their leftover cereal into the bin when no bag was in it, so now I’ve got to soak it and scrub that out. Since its so tall, I have to do that in the bathroom and then I notice the toilet paper roll needs changed, someone got toothpaste all over the wall and mirror, and the floor is wet for some reason.

Meanwhile, one kid is hanging on my leg singing a song that consists of “mommy mommy mommy mommy mommy I’m hungry mommy mommy mommy mommy I want chicken fetticinni mommy” and the other one is sullenly playing on her tablet in her room and shooting me evil glares every time I dare disturb her.

I go to cook and have to do the dishes and scrub the countertops (I can’t work in a dirty kitchen). I go to defrost chicken and realize someone exploded food in the microwave and didn’t clean it, so now I’ve got to scrub that out too.

I need coffee. I go to put a new filter in and notice someone didn’t clean the old one out, and when I try to dump it the filter sticks and throws coffee grinds all over my floor. It may not have been sparkly before, but it’s sure as hell pretty gross now.

And people wonder why women are so tired all the time and why it looks like nothing ever gets done. I need a drink, a maid, and a four day nap!

On This Episode of ‘Friends’…Crickets

Does anyone else out there feel like you need to hang out with adult people more? I swear, I used to have friends and hang out with adult people all the time, but it seems like the last few years have been nothing but work, kids, and here recently, being in my car zipping off to some place or another.

It feels like I’ve lost touch with a lot of friends over the years and the idea of trying to get back in touch with them out of the blue makes me feel so awkward. Not that trying to make new friends isn’t incredibly awkward as well – Lord knows the words that come out of my mouth when I get nervous don’t help any. Or if that doesn’t make them wonder what in the hell is wrong with me, then realizing just how clumsy I am and how often weird things just happen to me will sure do it.

Today I tripped over my own pants and threw a salad all over a counter. Trying to recover my cool, I tried to take a drink while casually looking around and poked myself in the eye with my straw.

So if by chance I do manage to find someone I’m cool with, I get anxiety trying to think of how to hang them to hang out sometime without seeming like the desperate high school nerd who is trying to climb into your life.

Seriously, I just need mom friends who are cool with my special coordination challenges, won’t judge me for my messy house, and is totally ok with things like eating spaghetti and grilled cheese for dinner because my kids are weird and won’t eat anything remotely healthy for them, oh and I also have to cook a hugely veggie heavy meal on the side because my husband is diabetic and I’d like to keep him around for as long as I can.

Bonus points if you can help me pimp out a knee scooter while he’s sleeping.

To “Me Too,” or Not to “Me Too”

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, I’m sure you’ve seen the sexual assault/ harassment posts going around on Facebook. Tons of women (and I have seen some men!) have raised their hands in a show of solidarity to show just how prevalent the problem is and to support each other.

This post is not for them. While their ability to put it out there is admirable, this post is for those who still aren’t brave enough to do so, who fear repercussions for one reason or another, or simply just don’t feel like sharing a vulnerable moment in their lives with so many people they aren’t comfortable with.

This post is for those who are staying silent rather than joining in the sharing. Whose fingers are numb and frozen, who can’t breathe when they think about it.

Whatever happened, it’s ok if you don’t want to tell everyone. If and when you share your story, you should feel comfortable. Safe. Even if the words feel like glass leaving your mouth and you feel like you’re raw and bleeding when you’re done speaking, you should feel safe.

You matter. Your story matters. Whomever you tell that story to matters. It’s a tough thing to open up and make yourself vulnerable, and it’s ok if you don’t do it on Facebook and put it out there.

You survived whatever happened to you.

You are still putting one foot in front of the other every day.

You are still breathing.

Those things matter, too.

Marriage and the Antibiotic Olympics

I’ve mentioned before how the Mr. has been struggling with his health, especially over the last year. First he had digestive issues and then he developed a diabetic ulcer on the ball of his foot that he’s struggled with for nearly a year now. He took as much sick time and short-term disability as he could from his job, but eventually it reached a point where his job felt forced to let him go and he lost his insurance. Trying to get insurance through the state (my job does not offer any health insurance) has been a whole other herd of lions to fight, and in the meantime, he was unable to keep receiving the medical care he had been getting and things got bad for him – and then they took a turn for the worst.

He wound up being hospitalized for three weeks, guys. Diabetes, bone infection, and sepsis are no joke. They will take your body and hold it hostage. The man has been through so many powerful antibiotics that I almost believe he could be immune to herpes at this point.

When a bone becomes infected, there isn’t much they can do. Even with aggressive antibiotic therapy it can still spread and spread quickly – even to your blood. And since your blood goes everywhere in your body it is extremely dangerous. He wound up having the second toe and some of one of the long bones in his foot amputated and was still so septic he had to remain in the hospital for an extended amount of time.

So much time that we wound up spending our very first wedding anniversary in the hospital. I had a grilled ham and cheese sandwich and a piece of cheesecake, in case you were wondering. It was delicious.

It was also not at all how I expected our first wedding anniversary to go, you know? Not that I ever put too much thought into my expectations for it, but still. Everybody always hints around that when you get married your relationship changes, but I didn’t really expect mine to. We had been together for four years beforehand. We had weathered serious issues in that time – the death of his father and subsequent family turmoil, a child custody arrangement on my end, moving in together and job changes. Getting married never mattered much to me but it was so important to him that it became important to me as well. It was less than two months later he developed the ulcer and the issue continued to snowball from there. I certainly didn’t expect the “in sickness and in health” portion of those canned wedding vows to become so front and center so soon.

And while those canned wedding vows may be the standard in wedding ceremonies, I am still me and I still have my shining sense of humor that has gotten me through the many shitty hands of cards that life has dealt me over the years. This whole experience has taken its toll on the Mr., and it breaks my heart to see him so down.

So I made it my personal mission to make him smile in some way every day. The man is my best friend and he puts up with all of my shenanigans and special quirks. He knows my house may be messy, but by god my towels will be folded just so and put in a certain place in the closet. He knows I like sweet, cold things just before bed and that I will always throw my leg over his in my sleep, almost like I’m afraid he’s going to jump up and make a run for it. Losing a toe and some bone? That’s ok, babe. It doesn’t change a thing about how I feel toward you. I’m still going to treat you the same and make fun of you just as much. It’s how I show my affection.

And with that in mind I contacted a friend of mine who makes shirts upon request. And BAM, these beauties came into fruition:

 

 

I know that second one has a small print, but it says “You can count on me, but only to 19!” šŸ˜‰

Everyone who snickered at me when they said marriage changes things was absolutely right. That man is stuck with me now, and I couldn’t be happier about it.

The Pasta on the Floor

With school having started back up now, I am determined to cook more meals for my family. It sounds great, but half the time I’m running around like a crazy person and then I realize it’s time for dinner and I dint have a plan for it.

Yesterday I decided to make my chicken pasta – one of the girls’ faves and there’s aways leftovers to heat up for lunch the next day. I was excited. I went to the store, got my ingredients, came home, and got busy. I’m frying bacon to crumble, I’m cooking chicken, I’m even chopping veggies up to make the Mr. his own meal since he’s diabetic and can’t have all the carbs pasta brings to the table. As soon as my chicken gets done I throw my pasta in to boil while I crumble bacon and shred chicken. I make my sauce and toss is the whole shebang in a pan and sprinkle on parmesian cheese so it can bake for a bit and all the flavors mix together.

Twenty minutes later, the small wafting through my apartment has me drooling. I’m done waiting. So I throw open the oven, grab my potholders, grab onto my pan…and proceed to slip and flip the pan upside down as I pull it out. I now have pasta all over the bottom of my oven, all over the oven door, and trailing onto my kitchen floor.

The Mr. hears all of the commotion and comes running, worried I injured myself, and finds me staring blankly at this disaster and trying not to cry. I see him, panick for some weird reason, and reach down to grab my pan. I immediately throw it back down because, of course, it’s still blazing hot from being in the freaking oven.

I am the reason we can’t have nice things. Also, our pizza last night was delicious, thanks.

RespiteĀ 

People want so desperately to wipe the slate clean, start over with no past. Like there’s no history clinging like a second skin, no memories playing repeat of past mistakes and regrets so powerful you can taste them on your tongue like icing.

I want to remember everything.

I want to remember all the times I ever felt alive with the people who are now dead. I want to remember crooked smiles that lit up the world like sunshine. 

I want to remember this vast world of infinite possibilities reduced to a moment, a piece of time where everything was perfect. 

But you can’t have all the good without the bad, the other moments where it felt like your soul was sliced down and made into glass. When you shattered and lost pieces. You may come back together, but you’ll never be the same because some were lost. Pieces were stolen. People were careless; people were so busy trying to collect their own pieces they didn’t realize they were crushing yours beneath their feet.

I want to remember those moments too.

When it tasted like blood in my mouth from trying not to beg and half-moons lined my palms from clenching my fists when I was just trying to hold myself together. All the times I tried not to cry, all the times I hated myself for looking weak. 

Because those moments are precious too. Those moments led to growth, even when the growing pains wormed into my bones and I couldn’t catch my breath.

Every moment has led to this one. This moment isn’t perfect, but I can see every strand, every decision (mine or not) that led to me being right here, right now. A person able to withstand. Survive. And smile.

Playing “The Fool” Card

In Tarot, there’s usually (depending on your deck) a card titled “The Fool.” The most classic depiction of this is a young man with a knapsack looking behind him at a dog without realizing he is walking straight off of a cliff. This card could mean the guy’s an idiot for not realizing he is about to die, or it could mean that he’s aware of dangers but is trusting the path he is on will work out I’m the end.

It is a perfect representation of my life right now.

I had enough at my job. I tried so hard to do both of the positions they had forced on me, but the stress literally had me depressed and on the verge of crying all the time, which is not like me. I couldn’t sleep. I was barely eating. It was to the point I was considering going to the doctor and being put on medication to calm my anxiety so I could concentrate on the tasks at hand instead of staring at my computer screen frozen because I was terrified anything I did would be wrong. Huge red flag – I should not have to medicate myself to work.

I was talking about it with my sister-in-law and she mentioned they were needing a manager pretty bad at a new pizza shop her work opened a few weeks ago. I drove up there to apply and to my surprise also interviewed. A few days later I was offered the job and I was off on the next adventure in my life.

I’m so sad at the way it turned out at my previous job – I had worked hard, had some big successes, and it is the failures that will always haunt me. I liked working there, but trying to do two demanding positions as one person was too much. In my exit interview I begged them not to do the same thing to the next person. No one should be broken down like I was. I had no confidence left by the time I said enough was enough. It seems they took that to heart because they have now divided up my previous position into two.

My new job – managing a pizza joint in a nearby town – is a huge adjustment. I barely use any of the skills I learned at my previous job, I took a huge paycut, I work long hours on my feet and I get really bored sometimes when it’s slow. However, it’s a job and when I do get time off I don’t have to worry myself to death about what’s happening while I’m gone or try to catch up on less-critical work I wasn’t able to get to during the week. I can just be home and enjoy my family. That alone has been worth the transition.

I don’t necessarily feel like this is what I want to do for the rest of my life. I’m not even entirely sure what my goals for that are anymore, honestly. This last six months has changed a lot of things for me and I’m on my way to becoming a new person because of those changes. Like The Fool, I just have to trust that things are going to work out. 

The theme of this blog is Life, Family, and Hilarity – so let’s get back to that, shall we?

Just a Little Bit of Prose

Just once I’d like to lay my head down and go to sleep. Sleep without the play play play pause play of constant loops in my head and all the conversations I never had with the people I should have burning in my throat.

I need to go to San Fransisco. I need to see my unbiological brother and sit by the ocean smoking cigarettes and listening to waves until we finally break down and start talking about all the ghosts that haunt us because he gets it. He gets how people are there and you watch them spiral down and no matter how hard you try to hold on you’re just left with splinters and bleeding onto pages. 

Because even though it hurts like hell to relive the worst moments in your life, sometimes it’s the only way to fall asleep and make room for dreams.