Dying is the most embarrassing thing that can ever happen to you, because someone’s got to take care of all your details. – Andy Warhol

I don’t necessarily believe that dying is the most embarrassing thing, but one of my biggest fears is dying in an embarrassing or stupid manner. Mainly because, I am constantly noticing how the most circumspect things could result in accidental death.

Here are some examples:

  1. I’m taping up a box to store in the attic. The tape breaks and the dispenser jerks suddenly forward, slicing through the artery in my left wrist. – I’m not necessarily sure that this would lead to death through blood loss, but, how terrible would the news article be that read “Woman Dies from Tape Dispenser Wound”?
  2. I’m walking down the front steps when I trip and fall just right to hit my head in the exact spot that kills me immediately. Also, it’s raining. So, my dead body is just laying there looking ridiculous, in the rain. ūüė¶
  3. Somebody hits my car, causing me to flip or run into a pole, or I get crushed between 2 cars, and I end up dying or in critical condition from the injuries. I will be either carrying freshly bought groceries, or just picked up dinner, or some gift for one of my family members that I’m really excited to give them, when this incident happens. Then, not only am I dead/injured, but I’ve basically wasted money on whatever I just purchased, also, there could possibly be no milk for the morning after this event (though I suppose family/friends would be helping out with meal plans), and, worst of all, I wouldn’t be able to joyously give the gift.That would suck. Especially if the gift was broken/torn during the accident.

Normally, I’m able to minimize the effect these thoughts have on me, and nip them in the bud, whenever possible. Every now and then, though, especially when we’ve been sun-less, for quite a few days, I end up curled up in bed, napping, so I can finally shut my brain up.

It’s like that t.v. series ‘Dead Like Me’, where she dies because she gets hit by a piece of the toilet from a returning spacecraft. What an embarrassing way to die. I don’t want to go out like that.

In the meanwhile, my co-worker let me borrow seasons 1-7 of ‘Big Bang Theory’ and I’ve got a couple more episodes to watch before bed. ‘Tah!

  • S.L.
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The Shittiest Day

Sometimes when anxiety hits at work and I don’t want to take any more medicine, Sheila will kindly offer me her natural product:

PTG-00011-9
This magic potion that fizzes in hot water.

The first time she gave it to me was like heaven upon earth. As I sipped its warmth, I could feel the jitters melting away into the abyss. Even my colon relaxed. It relaxed a lot. See, this bewitched elixir’s primary ingredient is ionic magnesium citrate. I knew magnesium can work miracles for those who suffer from occasional constipation.

I took my lunch break and sat in my car. I took my lunch break and shat in my car.

It was an accident, obviously. I wasn’t quite sure what happened at first. I thought it would dissipate into the air. It lingered, a little too long. I quickly went back into the building and made a beeline to the restroom. There was no saving this, not here at work. I had to go home.

I headed straight to Ms. Frances’s office, but the big boss, Mr. Wilbur, coffee mug in hand as usual, caught me in the hallway. My cheeks were clenched as I trotted¬†hurriedly. He smiled and asked how my day was going. I told him it was good, but that actually I was leaving because I had a stomach bug. He asked if I was sure. I said, “Yes, I’m sure,” my face beet red. I started laughing. I just couldn’t help it. He gave me a knowing look and went into his office. I approached Ms. Frances as she was sitting at her desk and explained to¬†her the same thing, hoping against hope there was no odor. If there was, it would stick around because she wasn’t out in the open like everyone else. Ms. Frances has her own office. I quickly signed my leave form and slid it back to her.

As I was leaving the office, I noticed Sheila in the break room. I smiled and whispered loudly,¬†pointing to the troubled area, “I’M GOING HOME! I JUST SHIT MYSELF!”

And I did.

Yours in God-awful situations,

I.W.

We didn’t start the fire…the nutrients did.

Here’s a fun fact…if you dice up baby carrots and put them in a bowl in the microwave, they will catch on [actual flaming] fire, within about 2 seconds. Apparently, this is because of the nutrients the carrots received from the soil they were grown in, which gives them great arcing abilities. So, lesson here is, put some water [a tablespoon worth is a popular suggestion] in with the carrots, so you don’t explode your kitchen trying to appease sweetpea Beelzebub’s need for “real people food”.

Reading back on what I’ve written previously, I had a sudden realization –

I remembered things better when I was highly committed to recreationally partaking in drugs of varying sorts, shapes, colors and textures.

The egg in the frying pan? That is my brain, now. Which then makes me wonder, sweet mother of everything that is holy, does this just mean that I’m getting crazier as I age? I am going to be a hot mess of an 80 year old woman.

I had another realization earlier today, as well, and it made me mad.¬†I do the best at getting shit done when I am¬†all alone. Seriously, though, the most organized and together my life has ever been [we’re just talking financial and physical health and great feng shui in the living space] was during my time of living alone. That is upsetting to me. It is upsetting to me to realize [or vocalize, because I’m pretty sure the Shadow has known what lurks in the heart of me] that I am so easily sidetracked or derailed by my living situation and the people within it. I am a feminist, dammit! I am an intelligent woman! I read, I write, I study, I enunciate! I am¬†so good at getting things done on a deadline! [Actually, it’s better when I have a deadline, otherwise I am so good at procrastination. Maybe I just love the thrill of pushing the edge to its limit.] Except, suddenly I’m not. I feel like someone just handed me 6 balls and a clown nose and pushed me into the middle of the big ring and told me to start juggling, when I’ve never held that many balls before in my life, much less juggled them. [heh] I feel like, in a few years at most, things will even out. I have to believe this is going to happen. I know this is going to happen. I just have to stay sane on the surface and just keep swimming and eventually, eventually, we’ll pass through [this] fire.

Irene said yesterday [I think] that we were the two funniest people in the office. We are. Not that many [any] of the rest of them know this. Although, our co-worker, Amber, who sits behind/across from me, is fascinatingly kind of out there. I have scraps of paper and saved emails where I’ve written down, or written Irene, about things she has said. I go back and re-read them sometimes if I’m having a bad day and they always make me laugh.

Here are some samples of Amber’s wonderful sayings:

“Oh my god, my roots are showing today! I’ve used so much white out! I mean, not on my actual computer screen….”

or this fun repartee:

Amber: “It’s so pretty outside!”

Me: “Yes, it’s too bad we can’t get more sunlight in here.”

Amber: “Yeah, they should’ve put in a skylight!”

Me: …….

Me: “We’re on the first floor.” [of a 9 story building]

Amber: “Well, yeah, but still.”

 

Poor Honeypie received her first paper cut tonight, at the ripe old age of 4. It was tragic. She was happily reading a book about the Gingerbread Girl and Animal Crackers, and then she went to turn the page, skidded her finger on the edge, gasped and put her finger in her mouth and looked at me, and I had time to say¬†“uh oh” and then the pain hit and the wailing began. It took two Rudolph bandaids to fix the situation. Hopefully, she won’t let this betrayal keep her from being excited about her books.

Sweetpea Beelzebub has discovered stairs, so I am excited [not] to see how many more entries she is going to make into her “how many times can I hit my head on something before I’m one” agenda. We had an entry earlier tonight, wherein she learned [probably not] that one cannot use a ball as a handgrip for standing up with.

On an end note: my husband bought me one¬†of those atrocious “bear cheeks” onesie pajamas for Christmas. See Exhibit A:

Image result for black and white bear cheeks pajamas

Do not tell him, but they are¬†awesomely comfortable. Still hideous, but comfortable. I’m going to get in them now.

  • S.L.

Where do we go, now that we’re here?

I took a sick day, not only for recuperative purposes, but also so I could get this stupid bedroom rearranged so I can be on my way to putting up, and using, my organizational system I was given for Christmas. I’m tired of trying to pick clothes for work out of the pile of stuff crammed behind my armoire doors.

You know what is one thought I have never thunk? I have never once thought that my children would be better off without me. Despite the issues I struggle with and my [obvious] failings at being a fully functioning human being at times, I know in my heart that I am the¬†one constant my children must always have in their lives. I am their fiercest ally. I feel this like a fire inside me. I don’t really understand friends of mine who have left their children, including my [old] best friend, who is also the mother of my niece and nephew.

I say this, because I have been having a very rough time, lately. I’ve never really been good at being bossed around. I’m very laid back and very open to compromise but after a certain point, I don’t want to be told what to do anymore, especially if I’ve already given a lot of myself over in order to appease someone else. I’ve been feeling very hostile, and rebellious, lately. The anarchist in my head has been very vocal about how I should just tell everyone to fuck off and do me. In the past, this was a pretty predictable pattern of behavior. Now, I can’t do it. I have children. I have children¬†I love. I cannot indulge my anger and if I can’t currently figure out a way to fix or defuse whatever is making me angry, then I just sit on it. This has the unfortunate kick-back reaction, of making me want to control something and so…..ta-da….half the day passes by without me eating anything. It’s not even on purpose, it’s just what eating anger does to you, it fills you up and leaves little room for things that nourish you.

We’re in this cycle, right now, this lifetime and I, where he is a star pinballing between planets, stretching to schedule my life because he doesn’t know how to stop the spin he’s in. The more my life becomes crunched to hourly activities determined by someone else, the angrier I get and the more time I spend in the bathroom growling obscenities into a towel, because I’ve grown past the need to deliberately inflict hurt upon another through my anger, but I’m not past the point of feeling the need to orate it, in some way.

It doesn’t help that these things he gets angry about, sometimes, about my not being able to keep up with things, important things, sometimes, they actually do happen. It is a problem. The additional problem, though, is that I already feel fucking horrible about whatever it is I’ve forgotten, it makes me even more anxious than I normally am because then I start to wonder what the fuck¬†else I’ve forgotten to do along the way, and then I have dreams of suffocating or drowning or being chased by dinosaurs. Like when the IRS informs you that you didn’t make your 2013 payment but they haven’t seen fit to tell you until¬†2 years later so that the amount now due is¬†literally double what it initially was. And, yes, it was my responsibility to do that, and in my head I was kicking my brain around in the street screaming “WHAT THE FUCK BRAIN? WHAT THE FUCK? HOW DID YOU FORGET THIS? WHY NOW? WHY DO I HAVE TO DEAL WITH THIS NOW? WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU? YOU FUCKING STUPID BROKEN BRAIN!” because, now, of course, in this moment, I am the epitome of every criticism and judgment that has been placed at my feet and on my head, in regards to being a financial fuckup. Every other thing in the world I have done¬†right, is erased in this moment. Erased.

The other day, Irene made a [somewhat] fussy remark re: “god, you’re so¬†thorough” and I am, normally. I am, normally, because of situations, like the one above, wherein my brain totally fucks me. Except now, it not only affects me, it affects my family. It affects my marriage. I am fucking sick of it happening. It makes me want to crawl into my bed and die, figuratively speaking.

I did write a fairly good poem, though, the first in a while.

 

  • S.L.

He’s Trying to Tell me Something

 

plans

I keep seeing this scripture. My religious co-worker, Agnes, gave me a card with my name on it and this scripture for Christmas. I cried a little when she handed it to me because I used to have a similar prayer card on my vanity. I kept it there for years and it had the same background as the one Agnes gave me. It just looked so familiar, and the scripture on this card is one of my favorites.

A few days later, I was scrolling though Facebook and came across a link that Maude posted to her neighbor’s blog. I clicked on it and read the first entry or two and realized the blog was heavily centered on faith. Faith is such a personal thing… this type of blog isn’t one¬†I would normally read. I kind of skimmed a bit and BAM! this scripture grabbed my eyeballs. It was her favorite verse.

Weird, seeing this particular scripture twice in the same week. Personally, I have been struggling with my own faith. And I’ve been worrying a lot about money¬†since Bruce has been out of work since last June.

This morning I was¬†driving home from a friend’s house, listening to the Top 40 station, when a song came on that I didn’t really¬†care for. I switched to the country station instead. The very first thing I heard was the voice on the radio reciting this scripture. On the country station. Where I have never once heard a Bible verse.

So I think instead of worrying about money, I will try to remember that God has our¬†back. He doesn’t want us to be poor. And therefore Bruce will find work soon.

Shortbread for Sanity

I really dislike other people’s rules. I prefer to just pretend to be in accord with everyone else. Except for when we aren’t, which is why I’ve never been good at working within any sort of religious/spiritual group. I may like aspects of them, but I don’t want to join them. This is a me party.

(These happenings will not seem to be cohesive, but they are.)

So, I was walking in the kitchen, and thinking about how awesome it would be to have some shortbread with my tea, but I’m not eating any sweets of any sort or kind, until Valentine’s Day, in an effort to kick off this plateau I had hit in losing this baby weight. Then, I thought about how I wanted to work some more in my book of shadows type-thingy (but with some modifications, because, me.) and that made me think about how adding recipes for really awesome (to me) things would be a great idea. Capture a moment in taste. So, then I thought about how it would be awesome if a recipe was actually a spell (because normally there are spells in books of….it was kind of a joke) and then you could just add some ingredients and make yourself some Shortbread for Sanity. Which, just, sounded like such an amazing name, I had to come google to see if it already existed, and then I had to write about it so it would exist. I’m even going to try to come up with an actual recipe. I’ll let you know.

But guys,¬†Shortbread for Sanity, tell me you don’t want some with your tea?

(I did find these on google:

Whipped Shortbread – Holiday Sanity Savers

and

http://www.samscookingforsanity.blogspot.com – I never even thought of putting saran wrap on top of dough when rolling it out to eliminate stuff sticking to the pin. This is awesome.

and

Earl.Grey.Shortbread.Cookies

 

 

  • S.L.

 

Look at my Baby

When¬†I was a pregnant teenager working at a fast food restaurant, an older couple would regularly pay visits to our store during lunchtime. I usually worked the register, so I got to know them fairly quickly. The folks were probably in their 60’s. Floyd would always crack¬†a joke or two, and his Asian wife, Phoung, was always smiling. ¬†Sometimes Floyd would¬†underhandedly slip me a $20 and I would always kind of smile and shake my head but take it after he insisted. I got that a lot, working there. People feel sorry for teenagers in my condition.

Floyd was tall and wore a hat, and the couple always showed up in a small black pickup. I noticed that pickup in my neighborhood one day and realized Floyd and Phoung lived down the street from me. I was so excited. Sometimes when I would walk around the block, the couple would be outside working on their yard and I would stop by and talk to them. One time, Phoung had a green something between her teeth. I stared at it as we spoke. I stared at it for a long time because she was always smiling. There were tiny gnats circling her the whole time, too, probably because she was a little sweaty from gardening. After that encounter, I always pictured her the same way. Phoung was ruined.

In 2007, I had that baby who I named Louise. One early morning as I was walking to my car, getting ready to head to my new job with baby Louise in tow, I noticed Floyd walking down the street past my driveway. I waved to him and he smiled really big and waved back. I shouted, “HEY! COME LOOK AT MY BABY!” I was excited to show Louise off to my friend. As Floyd started up the sloped driveway, something didn’t feel right. He walked¬†closer to Louise, who was tucked in her carrier, and said, “Oh! Well isn’t she pretty! Very nice.” And then he just stood there, waiting for me to say something.

I realized this man was not Floyd. This was a stranger who I had just told to LOOK AT MY BABY. I told the Floyd-impostor, “Thanks… well… I gotta go. Bye.” And got into my car, feeling weird.

Til next time,

I.W.

The importance of things we have done when people weren’t looking

I once sent my friend,Cormorant, a letter that said “This is what’s been going on in my life.” I put it in a padded manilla mailing envelope, along with 7 discs of music entitled “Soundtrack to a Leopard Love Affair”. She sent me a gold painting of a tree with her swirly surfing writing encapsulating its edges in doubt and alchemy and love and water. We were in Art Love, which is a very powerful thing,as anyone who has ever fallen in love with the artist as a byproduct of their talent can attest to. She married a woman who photographs celebrities, and returned to champion her waves and women’s rights in San Diego.

I then moved on to sending letters surrounding a moment along with a soundtrack story to my friend, Hart, who always apologized for never sending letters back. It never mattered. It was almost more fun to know that there was no expected reciprocation. I sent her open highways, and a love left in Mississippi, and a rebelliously drunken feminist statement on singularity. I kind of loved her, but in an abstract way. I would crash on her couch, some weekend nights, and she would tiptoe in to wake me in the 11am sunlight, wearing nothing but a pair of panties, and offering me orange juice or, once, a kitten. (The kitten is now 9 years old and has to live with my brother.) I fell in love with my husband, during these times, and one day she stood behind the bar and asked if he was taking her woman away from her. He said “maybe”, which I now know is his way of saying “yes”. (It’s one of those things he does.) Hart married a woman who isn’t always there and moved across to the other ocean and took her last name so she could sound like a cowboy on her resume.

My best friend, Dylan, and I, would put her son to bed and then sit on her porch on muggy summer nights, smoking and drinking and meandering over topics until we both got tired or she got tired and I got restless and went out into the night while she went into her dreams. She liked to kiss me when she was drunk and her first tattoo (out of what became many)was one that matched with me, on a morning after we’d fallen asleep and woken up with Jack Daniels between our teeth. She borrowed one of my goddess dresses and we went dancing into the night, where she met her future husband and left me behind, for the hills of Tennessee and too much time on her hands.

I think the best friendships are really their own kind of love affair. I think it’s important to remember the gifts of memory given, even when people are gone. I think the biggest gift someone can give you, is Freedom. Freedom to be you, in whatever shape or mood or mode you’re in at the moment, and loving you still and fiercely.

I’m actually tired at a (somewhat) decent moment tonight, so I’ll end on this nice-feeling note, and I’ll just leave this here:

 

  • S.L.

How to Question your Marriage Based on a Dream

Of all the recurring nightmares I have, which is really only two, one of them will always drag on for what seems like hours. If I am lucky enough to wake myself up from it, I am usually unlucky enough to fall back asleep and pick up right where Sleepy Brain left off. This is the nightmare that my husband Bruce does not love me anymore and has decided to return to his former lover, also my former friend. His ex. My ex. HARRIET.

I dreamed last night that we had only been married for 6 days before he suddenly decided¬†that he loved Harriet and would go back to her. Every time I looked at him he would be writing in a journal, and when I got a chance, I would grab the journal and flip through the pages to find words of love to this other woman. January 21st:¬†Those beautiful eyes! One of the pages read¬†in orange¬†marker.¬†Bruce would get angry and grab the journal back,¬†indignantly tell me to fuck off, and then I would cry and beg for our marriage. And he would tell me no, that he wasn’t happy anymore, that he would be with the one he truly loved.

It is gut wrenching. I wake up angry and sad, and try to make up for the feelings by holding Bruce and telling him I love him. I went through a lot to get Bruce back in my waking life. I’m not going to let Dream Bitch Harriet do the same.

Pardon my fucking language. I woke up from this cruel dream an hour ago, and I’m still feeling it. My Bruce would never do that to me.

…Right? O.o

Yours in heartache,

I. W.