Friday, April 30, 2010

Retail Therapy

I was taught at an early age that any time your life is disrupted, you go shopping. Not just shopping, but SHOPPING, all caps, all the time. Shopping for shoes, clothes, sales, junk, whatever. When the going gets tough, the tough go shopping.

This I learned from my grandmother, who was a huge influence on my life. Probably the greatest influence on my life. Her best friend's name was Mall. Mall was short for Lillian. Well, maybe not short for Lillian, but instead of Lillian. You see, Mall and my Nana were shopping buddies. They had their routine down pat. Off to Hagerstown, Maryland to while away time and the Montgomery Wards and Sears and I think there was a JC Penney there too, but that was a long time ago and my memories aren't what they used to be. Then they would get pizza, again in the mall.

Anyway, enough background information. To make a long story short, I learned at the feet of the master shopper. How to find deals. How to love shoes, especially high heels. How to use shopping to forget about your troubles for a while.

Today, I have learned that while a fun past time, shopping should not be a form of therapy. For many reasons. One, it can get you into debt. Two, the problems don't go away, they just hide for a while. Three, once the problems you were running away from come back, you just go shopping again which leads us right back to reason #1.

I love to shop. I love to bargain hunt. I love good clothes and even better shoes. But for myself, I am on a shopping moratorium.

At the beginning of the year, I created a self-imposed shopping hiatus that is to last until 2011. At first it was just shoes. Now I have added all non-necessity items to that list. I have had a serious decrease in cash flow lately and I really do own all of the shoes that I need at the moment. In fact, I am going to clean out my garage shoe storage area and give away anything that I have not worn in the last two years. Same thing goes for my clothing.

I am doing too fucking well at this asstarded shopping abstinence. I have NOT bought a single pair of shoes this entire year and it's almost May. How can that be? I NEVER stick with anything and yet this one thing that brings me so much joy, I have cut out of my life completely. Go figure. And I can't really just try shoes on because that is like putting a fat person in a candy shop just to smell the chocolate, or taking an alcoholic on a tour of the Jack Daniels plant. Nooooooooooooo!!!!! I went cold turkey. Just like that. And now, all of the beautiful, shiny, sequined, strappy, stiletto, platform, wedged, glorious sexual objects for the feet are out of my grasp.

I know that I can do this damn thing. I just have to stay out of every single store that I love so much. Like Macy's and Dillard's and BCBG and BeBe and.... well you get the point. And I am doing well with the clothing too. For one, I am not working, so the costume du jour is almost always drawstring sweats and a T-shirt and maybe a hoodie on cold days. The few times I have to get dressed in something that I shouldn't be cleaning in, I wear jeans. That's not to say that I haven't bought clothing or shoes. Or maybe I should say one pair of shoes. I had to, as a necessity, purchase a new pair of tennis shoes. And I have picked up a couple of pairs of yoga pants and t-shirts since March when I added clothing to the mix. But all of those items were needed and I don't count socks and underwear and bras in any category as I don't need my undergarments to look like mice have been chewing on them

Other than that, I have stuck to my plan.

Hopefully I can buckle down and apply this attitude to other areas of my life.

Cheers to not falling off of the wagon. Because we all know that if I do, it will be the shopping spree heard 'round the world. The stock market will go up, there will be small, overworked children in third world countries with bleeding fingers and department stores in my town will weep at the extravaganza.

Hopefully, I can just dream about it at night at let the memories get me through the day. Until then, I can just picture my Nana and Mall, in heaven, weeping with the angels over my strict self-control. Not understanding how I can resist the might siren's call of that phenomenon we call Retail Therapy.

Love, Peace and Chicken Grease.

Monday, April 26, 2010

I Just Might Still Be Funny

So Saturday night was the bachelorette party for one of my oldest and dearest friends. She is getting married in a few weeks and I am in the wedding. I am very excited for her.

However, I was worried about the party because I am not 100% there physically and most likely won't be for the next several months. I didn't want to detract from her day in any way, but I thought that I should show up to support her.

The plan was to go to dinner with a small group and then go home and meet the entire party back at her house an hour before they were set to leave and then follow them to their first location so that I would have my car since I wasn't planning on staying out the entire night. I have to take my medication at specific times and I needed to be home, so going with the entire group was not an option for me.

Still, I worried that the woman that my friend had known for the last twelve years would no longer be there. In her place, would be someone else. Someone who has changed remarkably over the last two years and even more so over the last two months. I felt like I would have nothing to contribute to the party.

Not so.

I had them laughing in hysterics at the dinner table that night. Somehow, I was able to reach deep into myself for the ability to be humorous once more. I had some pretty remarkable one-liners and some funny stories. I might not be the life of the party, but I was still fun. Stone cold sober. I can't drink on my medication and I don't have the desire to, even if I had the ability. I want a new and different life for myself and I am working hard to forge my way ahead and become the person that I want to be, with all of the good parts of the old person thrown in.

They say that you can't teach an old dog new tricks. To those people I say "shut the fuck up and mind your own damn business." I am not old, I am not a dog and I don't do tricks. What I am doing is trying to remodel myself into a better person. Not that I was a bad person to begin with, but there is much room for improvement and that is my aim. I no longer strive to be superwoman. I have much more simple goals. To be a good parent, to be a good daughter/sister/etc. and to be a good friend. I think that once I tidy that part of my life up, the rest will start rolling into place.

I am still the same person, just improved. Better, faster, stronger. Okay, maybe I am not all of those things yet, but I will be. Sometime in the future I will be.

I am still getting my ass kicked on a daily basis. The side effects of this medication are increasing, but I try to keep a positive outlook. Things could always be worse and the point of what I am doing is to be healthier. I am trying every day to be positive and see that silver lining that seems so obscured to me. But still I cannot do this without assistance. I have friends and family, loved ones, who are helping me through. Even when I try to shut them out, the come crashing through my walls to help. I don't even have to ask for it. They pick me up when I start falling. They reassure me when I have doubts. They take my negativity and shoot rainbows back at me. Their unfailing belief in me keeps me going and makes me believe in myself and my own strength.

I am still working through all of this, but I am taking it one day at a time. Which is the only way that I can do what I need to do and still have a productive, happy life.

But I'm still funny. So yay!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

To Sarah

I have known you since you were a teenager and I was a mere twenty years old. How quickly time passes as it's now twelve years later. We have both had children since then. We have had relationships and tears, smiles and laughter, heartbreak and successes.

I met you at a "fitness" class that we were both taking for an easy credit and an easy A. Little did we know that the instructor was a hard ass and that she would be riding everyone until the end of the semester. When the final came around, and yes there was a fucking written final for a dumb ass strength and flexibility class, we cheated off of each other.

Then came dancing, a shared passion. You taught me how to do most of them. We learned hip-hop in your tiny apartment one floor below mine. It was the three amigos on one, two and three, but you and I most of all.

We went dancing once or twice a week. Learning the two-step and the waltz, the cha-cha and the chadish. Before we left, we would get ready together most of the time in one of our tiny bathrooms with curling irons and hairspray and makeup scattered all over the place.

You were my support when things started to slide south in my life. You gave me encouragement and strength and the insight that, yes what I was doing was difficult and painful, but in the end I had made the right decision for everyone involved.

Throughout the years, we have spent time together and time apart due to circumstance and trials. But whether we were eating bad pizza from Rini-Rego's and watching Jeff Foxworthy on my VCR or playing softball together, we always had fun.

Picnics and birthdays and cards and crazy times and quiet times were all a part of our friendship. You are a sister of the heart and one of my favorite people on the planet. I can always count on you to be there for me whenever I need you, even if I don't have the courage to ask for help. And you know that I will be there for you whenever you need me, whether you want me to be there or not.

Congratulations on making this new change in your life. I am proud of the way you have matured over the years and how you handle yourself with dignity and grace. I will be there on that day in May, standing up for someone that I love with all of my heart. You don't need my blessing or my input. You need my support and my love and I hope, that on your special day, that you can feel both radiating from me as we share in such a joyous occasion.

I love you.


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Happy Birthday Baby

My little bear is six today.

I love him so.

That is all.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Hooters Reunion Part 2 - With Pictures

How much fun was last Friday night? It's been so long (too long) since I have gone out with friends.

Even though Ihad to leave early in the night - since I take medicine and all - and even though I had about a half a glass of sangria, I had an absolute blast.

I you are ever in Cleveland, you have to go to Mallorca. It is the best restaurant in town and the service there is impeccable. Of course, no one sitting anywhere close to us enjoyed their dinner since we were absolutely obnoxious. In fact, KY decided to yell out "Fuck yeah I like to party" at the top of her lungs. And some old fossil had to be manhandled onto his transport back to the hotel he and his wife were staying at AFTER telling his wife "I don't wanna go".

And then there was the BIG HAIR. All caps. HUGE HAIR. KY and I both go to the blog renowned Man Ho Cho and he has a saying... well actually I gave him the saying, but it's "the higher the hair, the closer to God." And by all that is holy, he takes it seriously. He actually told me after he did my hair "I rearry outdid mysef dis time."

KY and I were the first to arrive, so when we walked in she told the host, "BIG HAIR, party of ten." I almost peed my pants and that was just the start to the evening.

All told, eight ladies showed up which was a great turn out. One of our girlfriends from Minnesota was in town and I had not seen her for almost three years, so it was a real treat.

I, of course, had to go home early along with two other ladies. I can't stay out late with the medication I am on and I get very tired, very easily. I was soooo sad to go, but c'est la vie.

It was a great time and I can't wait to do it again soon.

Oh... and here are some pictures.

Me with BIG HAIR and my very sparkly dress.

Me and KY

Me and BBS

Three Hot Mommas


"Unh Unh, We Closed"

"I hate grape pop, It tastes like med-di-sun"

"Oh my God! You found my purse. I have 18,000 dollars in there."

"Frito Bandito"

"Browns' Sunday"

"I love KY's Flower" (in mustard)

Turtle Face

Collective Soul

Vanilla Ice

Sonny Ledford and an accidental Vicodin incident

Good times ladies. Good times.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Hooters Reunion Part 1


It's been 10 years since I started working at Hooters and almost 7 since the place closed down. When that happened, there were a lot of girls out of a job. I am sure that most of us thought that we would go our own way, but we many of us were surprised that we never did.

After that sad, sad day, many of us began working at a new place, in a new location with a new owner. In fact, the place was so new that it wasn't even open at the time the old place closed down. But it was up and running a few weeks later and so were we.

Most of us decided to do other things at new places. But through it all, a core group survived. At first we saw each other quite a bit. Either by working together, or meeting up now and then to reminisce or have a few drinks. We would see each other at weddings and baby showers.

Some of us moved away. To Minnesota and Chicago and South Carolina and other places unknown.

But today? Today a big group of us gets back together. We are going to meet tonight and a very nice place where last the largest group of us dined. We will eat and drink and switch seats and laugh and tell stories about things that happened in that golden time. Before we grew up. Before we really started understanding life.

So much has changed. Marriages and divorces. Babies and break-ups. College Degrees, new jobs, new cities, new friends. But the core of it all? Underneath everything? Is a sisterhood that will never diminish with time.

And my hope is that we will do this more often. And that over the years, as our faces line with wrinkles or spread out with Botox, as we have more babies and learn more about life, that the love and affection that we feel for one another stays true and strong.

We might not be together all at once. We may never have this opportunity again. But what we will have are all of our memories and hopefully all of our mammaries.

I love you girls and I can't wait to see you all tonight.

Bring it hard and bring it sexy.

Love, Peace and Chicken Grease.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


Damn it all. I need to stop thinking so much and start writing. I am the world's greatest procrastinator and what I really need is someone to kick my ass and tell me to buck up and get going.

Instead, I think. I get ideas in the middle of the night that I never write down. I worry about things that haven't happened yet and will never happen unless I buckle down and start doing it.

Thinking sucks me in, because before I know it, hours have elapsed and I have gotten absolutely nowhere. I can blame the medical stuff or I can blame personal issues or I can blame being a busy mother. I CAN blame any number of things, but I won't because I am to blame.

At the end of the day, I am a chickenshit. I am too scared of rejection and too lazy to do something that I really, really want to do. The ultimate dream. And now? I am wavering. All I really want to do is go back to bed. What I should do is buckle down and write. What I probably will do is laundry.

I hate people like me today. Vacillating. Opting out. Being scared.

I need to remember to breath. And to remember that it's OK to be scared. I have been told in no uncertain terms that I have to stop trying to be perfect. Not that I think I am perfect, but that I try too hard to BE perfect. So I will wallow if I want to and if inspiration strikes, I just may get that little nudge that I need.

Love, Peace and Chicken Grease.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Mandarin Diarrhea Episode 1

Ha ha freaking ha.

I can't wait to see what google searches bring this post up.

But I digress. Because? There really is a point to this post. And that is Meatloaf, Mandarin Oranges and copious quantities of diarrhea.

To wit. I was at a friend's house last night and I decided that since I have been really tired from medication, etc, that it would be better just to hang out and chill instead of going to dinner and a movie or whatnot. So I decided to make meatloaf. Not just any meatloaf, but my famous (in my head only) meatloaf.

My meatloaf is kind of like grape meatballs (if you have never had them, google it and make them because they are the equivalent of angel appetizers) in that the ingredients sound completely disgusting, but the end result in scrum-diddley-umptious. You take about 3 pounds of ground beef and infuse it with soy sauce and other secret things and then you mix up some brown sugar, more soy sauce and mandarin oranges and pour the whole thing over the top.

After baking for about an hour, you proceed to the consumption of the loaf.

HOWEVER. Three pounds of meatloaf between two people should result in at least 2 plus pounds being left over. Unless you are complete and utter piggies and you decide to ingest over two pounds of it in one sitting. All I will say is that one person had about a half a pound and the other probably porked down at least the other pound and a half.

The results? Ensuing hilarity.

Stomach Aches
Gaseous Explosions
Crop Dusting
Buddha Bellies
Moans of pain
Utterances of agony

And the best part of all is that I, as in moi, had my ass explode. Literally. My stomach started gurgling anew about 30 minutes after my meal and I felt like I had to fart. But I was afraid to fart because my Early Warning Sharting System (EWSS) pinged me to let me know that there was a good chance that I would shit myself. So I hied my tightly clenched ass cheeks to the nearest crapatorium and wriggled out of my pants as quickly as possible. People, I took my pants completely off and set them aside on the off chance that there was splatter and my pants would be a casualty and thusly be stained with foul liquid. But, the law of the fear of shitting yourself kicked in and I sat on the throne for 10 minutes before I felt another gluteal ping. It was then that I expended a fart that could rattle the bowels of hell itself and send the devil shaking under his bed. And after all that, there was very little poo. Just enough to hurt my very sensitive anal area, but not enough to do any real damage.

So? Crisis averted.

Not so much.

After I got my the pins and needles out of my legs it wasn't but another half an hour before the rumbly in my tumbly sent me back to John T Crapper. Then the magic happened. By the end of my experience, I had completely covered the toilet in what one can only describe as a coating of brown acid rain. My legs AND my arms went to sleep from all of the clenching. There were points where the need for a fire department and/or ambulance was discussed and dismissed, but it was a near thing.

All I could do afterwards was pray to God that I had expelled everything from my esophagus to my anus. It was the equivalent of a self-induced colonoscopy except there was no lube and afterwards, I had to climb in the sink and hose my rectum out with the sprayer set to jet stream.

Did I mention that it was the KITCHEN sink?

So? The moral of this story is that my meatloaf is excellent. In portioned amounts. But when someone with a highly sensitive stomach ingests about 4 times her body weight in beef, bad things..... very, very bad things might happen.

I still feel dirty.

And I think I owe my friend a new toilet.

The end.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Looking at Myself

Yesterday, I was forced to take a long, hard look at myself. To see myself the way that other people might see me and let's just say that I didn't like what I saw.

I have spent the last few months closing myself off from the world. In an attempt to avoid getting hurt by others, I have in fact hurt people who care about me. By building walls around my heart, I not only protected myself from getting hurt, but I have hurt myself by not letting other people in. I have not only been unable, or unwilling to reach out to friends and loved ones, but I have pushed them away. I have ignored phone calls and e-mails and not returned any attempts to contact me unless I had no other choice.

God what a selfish bitch I am. I have been so caught up in my own life that I have become less of the person I thought I was and more like a person I NEVER want to be, ever. I have been self-indulgent and I have boo-hooed and moped around like I am the only person to ever have had bad things happen to me. Instead of getting back to the person I should be, I have become a sad shell of my former self.

This is not to say that there haven't been reasons for my recent behavior. I am going through a lot right now and some of this has been caused by the medication and the sadness that comes from feeling like my 32-year old body has somehow betrayed me. I think if all of my doctors did a test, they would find that I am more like a sexagenarian than someone in the prime of their life and that has made me sad. (I did however fit sex into this paragraph, so perhaps all is not lost.)

But now I say nay, nay. No more. It is still within my reach to be me. To be a better friend and sister and daughter and especially, a better mother. I have help. I have friends. I have people who want to help take care of me if only I would let them. I am sick of being afraid of getting hurt and burned. SEE: ex-egg donor, ex-men, ex-friends, etc.

This is not to say that I am going to let people use me. My dad has this famous saying - "you deserve what you tolerate." So while I refuse to tolerate, or have in my life, people who don't care for me, I also have a responsibility to care for the good people that I do have and to show them how much I love them in return.

By opening up your heart, you risk getting hurt. But by not opening up your heart, you will never truly feel anything.

Someone very special to me sent this quote a while back and I was at first offended. Why? Because it was forcing me to look at myself in a light that I didn't want to see. But now, I understand it. I get it. And I certainly don't want a heart that is irredeemable.

“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket- safe, dark, motionless, airless--it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable.” C.S.Lewis

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Fight for This Love

I just can't get enough of this song.

It's been in my head and my heart for weeks now.

It makes me sad that people just give up. They give up hope and they give up on each other. It's easier to give up than it is to stand your ground and fight for what you believe in. It's easier to pretend in your head that the past never existed or that you were a different person when you play the scenes backwards in your head. It's easier to run from yourself and everyone you ever cared about and lie and hurt than it is to be a good person and take responsibilities for your actions.

I wish we could all live in that world. But instead, most of us live in this world. The one where you are supposed to honor your promises and stand by someone's side instead of sucking up everything that they have to give - like a leech - and giving nothing real and true of yourself in return.

If you think this post is about you, it probably isn't. The person that this post was specifically aimed at is long gone out of my life and wouldn't know how to be a better person if it hit them in the face with brass knuckles. It is just amazing that time doesn't heal all wounds. Some of them are just beneath the surface.

Of course a little bit of this post could be about you. Because it is targeted at the loss of a friendship. And Lord knows I have had enough shit people in my life that I have mistaken for being true friends, when they were only friends of convenience.

And I don't care if no one likes this song. I do. And it makes me feel better and worse at the same time. So suck it.

Monday, April 5, 2010


I am broken now
Only time will tell
What it takes to ease this soul

Your company
Such misery
No sympathy
The road that leads to perfidy

My eyes close
I view the abyss
The spiral staircase ends in mist

No sight
No sound
Just emptiness

Charon waits
Afloat on the River Styx
Do I turn to him
Embrace the nothingness
To ease the troubled suffering

Or do I trade my shields in
For stronger Mail
And protect anew
My every cell

I am broken now
Only time will tell

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Spring Cleaning

To be done in bullet points, because I love them so.....

  • Get rid of as much negativity in my life as possible. People who hurt you and constantly bring you down are not good for your soul.
  • Organize my clothing and shoes. My goal is to delete at least half of both my wardrobe AND my shoe collection. Shock and Awe people, SHOCK AND AWE.
  • Focus on my health. Both physical and mental.
  • Physical Health - I have recently started a new regimen of medication for a disorder that I have and it is kind of kicking my ass. But I have accepted that this is something that there is no cure for and that I have to buckle down and do something about it now before it gets out of hand.
  • Mental Health - I started seeing a new therapist recently. She is half Jewish and half Catholic and knows all about guilt. I like her sense of humor and raspy voice.
  • More Physical Health - I am in love with Yoga. I am making a concerted effort to take three classes a week for the next two months. This will help me in so many ways and my doctors have all said that it is something that is both safe and beneficial for me to do.
  • Go see my family in the next two months. I haven't seen them since last summer and I feel like I need their support more than ever now.
  • Get better. Be better. A better mother, a better friend, a better writer, a better member of the human race.
  • Work....... - work is difficult to say the least. I will be taking a short leave of absence from my job due to the medication that I am on, but I hope that when I get back to fighting shape that I will be better than ever.
  • Focus on family. My children are the two most important people in my life and they always will be. My priority is that they are both happy, well-adjusted children who wake up every day knowing how much I love and cherish them.
  • Find Inner Strength and Peace - not an easy task. Like Ru Paul says "If you can't love yourself, how in the hell are you going to love anybody else? Can I get an amen?" Love her!!!!
  • Remember who I am and who I want to be - those two things are very difficult. I have changed and evolved so much over the last couple of years that I think my true self has fallen by the wayside. I remember the days of yore when I felt creative and funny and witty and sarcastic. Now I struggle to get through each day. It is difficult enough to be going through this medical thing alone, but because of the person I am now, I no longer have a strong support system behind me. I let people I care about drift out of my life and I have embraced my loneliness. I am more like a hermit now than the fun loving, carefree girl of the past. I want to get back some of myself.
  • Have fun with life again - I realize now that I no longer need to prove myself to anyone but me. I think recognizing that and working through those issues in therapy will allow me to enjoy living once again without the ups and downs and drama that has plagued me.
  • Learn to forgive - I will never forget the hurtful things that others have done to me, but I am working on forgiveness. I don't want to grow old and bitter.
I think that's enough for now. I will be lucky to get a few of these things checked off of my list. My heart, mind and soul are very heavy right now. I can't help but think about the past 30 plus years and wonder how it all went by so quickly and what will be in store for me in the future. It's so uncertain right now. The only truth I know is that my life needs to evolve into something more than it is right now. Even if that means getting dressed in more than track pants and tennis shoes. (Have I mentioned that lately I have taken to only wearing drawstring track pants and tennis shoes/flip flops and T-shirts for the last 3 weeks?) I have a dear, dear friend's wedding coming up soon and I need to at least get these roots seen to, don't I?

All of my love to you and yours.