Archive for January, 2010

it’s not easy being sorry….

Wednesday, January 27th, 2010

All my 3 year old had to do was tell me she was sorry.  That’s it.  I’m sorry.  Two little words.  So why did it take half an hour?

Laura was sitting on her bed crying because she didn’t want to be in trouble.  We explained that if she said she was sorry, she wouldn’t be in trouble anymore.  Apparently that wasn’t convincing.

Laura is learning to control her anger.  As in – it is okay to be angry, upset, frustrated, what have you.  It is NOT okay to hit, bite, kick, lock yourself in your room, scream or throw things.  It is also a requirement to apologize when necessary.  Pretty simple from an adult perspective.  Not so simple when you’re three.  I know this.  I don’t understand her confusion but I know that it is there.  The moment when Laura “gets” this concept is on the horizon.  Robert and I have survived this phase twice before.  We just have to be consistent and patient.  Waiting 30 minutes for a pitiful “I’m sorry” is just part of the deal.

So why is it so hard to say that you’re sorry?  Is it fear of the other person’s reaction?  Is it because it is an admission of wrongdoing?  I think the latter is probably more realistic.  Nowadays, most people spend their youth learning in school.  Then they spend the rest of their career proving what all they know.  It would make sense that as we get older and more experienced it would be more difficult to admit a wrong.  That obviously doesn’t apply to Laura.  She hasn’t even been to kindergarten yet!

A few hours ago, after an excruciating wait, Laura finally uttered those two magic words and was allowed out of time out.  It is over and forgotten.  She is now asleep and if you peek at her precious face you would swear she’s an angel.  She is.  Maybe I’m biased.  Sorry!

have mercy…

Wednesday, January 20th, 2010

Were any of you driving on I-20 just outside of Atlanta Monday night around 6?  Did you happen to see a woman pulled over to the side of the road throwing up behind her van?  THAT WAS ME.  Yuck.

I was on my way from Birmingham to Anderson with 2 of my 3 girls.  I was going to pick up my middle child who had been in Atlanta with my in-laws for a little one on one time.  Everything was going along great.  We had just wrapped up a wonderful weekend with family in Birmingham and it was time to get back home and back to the daily grind.  Tooling down the interstate, I was mentally planning my week and then it hit me.  BAM!  A kidney stone was on the move.  I have had kidney stones for about 8 years now so I knew exactly what was going on.  It is a pain like no other.  The pain is so acute and so intense, it could level a lumberjack without breaking a sweat.  Labor can’t even throw a rock at kidney stone pain.  Trust me – I speak from experience.  Unfortunately I was in the middle of traffic on the interstate with nowhere to run and nowhere to hide.  All of my tricks for easing the pain were no good behind the wheel.  Robert was not with me so I didn’t have anyone else to drive.

Someone, however,  was watching out for me.  I managed to make it safely to the hotel where my in-laws were.  I dropped off the girls and the dog (did I mention that I had the dog?) with my father-in-law.  I climbed in the car with my mother-in-law and we headed for the ER.  By the time we got there I was crawling on the floor begging every pair of feet I encountered for morphine.  Of course, the ER was FULL.  Packed to the brim with miserable people waiting to hear their name called.  I’m sure I scared my mother-in-law to death.  I am usually a strong person.  I can usually keep a level head.  Kidney stones reduce me to a shaky moaning heap of a person.

Six hours later, an angel of mercy finally arrived.  My angel was named Jenny.  I swear she was glowing like the Madonna in a stained glass window.  She was carrying a smile in a syringe and relieved my agony in a matter of seconds.   She had been the only triage nurse on duty for over 10 hours.  She had gotten to me as soon as she possibly could.  The people in charge of budget cuts should be forced to spend a shift in her shoes.  They’d never cut money from the nursing staff budget again.  Enough on the soapbox….

The point is that we all survived the ordeal.  My girls and I are back home and I am waiting for this stone to pass.  I have everything I need to get through the next phase.  My parents are here with me for a few days because Robert is out of town on business (these things ALWAYS happen when he’s out of town) and I have a bottle of relief if I need it.  I am supposed to rest and take it easy over the next couple of days.  Do you know how hard that is for me?  Tres difficile!

It is all a brutal reminder that no matter how much I organize, clean and plan, I am not in charge.  Kidney stones or not, we must all admit that, in the grand scheme of things, we are not in charge.  We need someone to look out for us.  We need angels of mercy.  We cannot do this dance of life alone.  We are mere mortals and despite what we humans think, we do NOT know everything.

PS – To Jenny – I will forever love you and I am forever in your debt.  If you suffer from kidney stones, you know why I love this woman.  It’s not weird, it’s just common sense!

we are the champions…

Friday, January 8th, 2010

Yes, my friends, as most of you now know, my beloved University of Alabama Crimson Tide stomped Texas in a 37-21 victory to win the BCS National Championship last night!  Woo hoo!

I finally turned off the television after the game a little after midnight and went to bed.  Forty five minutes later I was still awake – too excited about the win to sleep.

In my usual fashion, I got the girls off to school this morning and began to question my feelings from the night before.  Why did a football game keep me awake into the wee hours of the morning?  Why do I care so much about this team?  Why do I get so excited about football?  I couldn’t throw a football to the other side of my yard if you paid me.  What gives?

The answer requires a quick trip back to high school so indulge me, if you please.  I went to a very small high school.  There were 48 students in my graduating class.  We did not have a football team.  We had basketball, volleyball, track, soccer, tennis, baseball, etc….but no football.  My parents are not big football fans and even though I went to a couple of games in my youth, we were not a family who watched football or cared much about what was going on in the sport.

Then I went to college at Alabama.  My first year, I got student tickets and went to the first football game by myself.  From the moment the team came on the field and I heard the roar of the crowd for the first time, I was hooked.  It was the coolest thing I had ever experienced.  I had to know everything about what was going on.  I was completely lost in the excitement of the crowd.  It was intoxicating.  Every home game, I was early to the stadium and late to leave – I couldn’t miss a minute.  Homecoming came around and I ended up going to all the events alone.  (Alone because of a boyfriend that turned out to be a turd so let’s not go there, okay?)  I was mesmerized.  I can’t explain how in awe I was.  It was fabulous.  Four years of being a student and a life-long love of the University had taken root and a passionate football fan was born.

What school you support, if any, really doesn’t matter to me.  I’m not going out of my way to say something if you cheer for a different team than I do.  Unless you are my sister-in-law or her dad.  They are the most fiercely competitive people I know.  But that’s beside the point.

What is my point, exactly?  I guess I don’t have one.  I was so excited about the Championship I just had to write about it.  This was our year and it was wonderful to experience as a fan.  Next year, who knows.  I’m sure there are plenty of people talking about it already.  It’s a clean slate.  For now, Roll Tide my fellow Alabama fans!  Enjoy the victory!

I have survived…

Thursday, January 7th, 2010

…another trip to the pediatrician.  With all three girls.  By myself…..

I don’t know why these trips are so incredibly stressful for me.

That’s a lie.  I do know.  I am there to get information about my child’s health.  I am trying to give all the pertinent facts and answer all of the questions so that I can then listen to the doctor’s diagnosis and advice.  Is that asking too much?  Apparently my children think this a time to entertain the doctor.  I don’t think we’re on the same page….

Once Dr. M has entered the room and greeted the girls she turns to me and asks “What brings you in today?”.  My children see that as a golden opportunity to tell the story of their day/week/month/year.  Our current doctor is great (all of our pediatricians have been great, FYI).  She patiently listens to each of my daughters ramble on for a few minutes before subtly helping them wrap up their story.  The girls have gotten all of their important words out into the open so Dr. M. and I can finally start talking about why we are there.  Now the girls start to touch stuff.  Anything silver and shiny and off-limits.  Let me interject here and say that, in the grand scheme of things, my daughters are not being that bad.  They are not screaming, hitting, kicking, biting or disturbing other patients.  They are just disturbing my patience.  I know exactly what is going on.  They are at their doctor where we are talking about their issues and they want their attention.  I know that.  I understand that.  I have no problem with that.  It is very simple.  However, when I am sitting in that room trying to determine if my child needs to be referred to an ENT about her ear issues, I tend to forget that principle.

I have yet to completely “lose it” at the doctor’s office.  Somehow in the presence of a health professional, I can muster the fortitude to hold in my frustration.  I wish I could do that all the time.  As I said before, I am not talking about serious misbehavior – they are just being the curious, talkative little girls that they are.  So why do I have such a problem?  I think it has to do with my belief that the doctor’s time is precious.  I know how fortunate I am to have good health insurance and the ability to get the health care my family needs.  I am very aware of how many others are in the waiting room also needing to be seen.  I don’t want to be the person who takes up valuable time with meaningless chit-chat.  But I digress….

The most tedious trips are the last minute ones when someone is in need of an ear check or strep test or what have you.  That happened today.  But I survived.  I even managed to pick up medicine on the way home.  Did I mention that Laura didn’t have a nap?  Did I forget to tell you that Robert is out of town?  HA HA HA HA.  BRING IT ON!

The girls are in bed, there’s chocolate in the kitchen and my alma mater is about to kick off in the BCS National Championship.  Life is good.

Scarlett Johansson is a talented actress…

Wednesday, January 6th, 2010

…but she makes me feel like a toad.

I saw He’s Just Not That Into You during nap time today.  It’s a cute chick flick.  I was happily watching along when the character played by Ms. Johansson was swept off her feet onto the desk of her “friend”.  Much flesh and canoodling followed.  It was then that I looked down.  I was in the middle of ironing little corduroy dresses and the tops that match.  I was in my sweatpants.

Let me take a little side trip here.  I am not the type of person who gets all dressed up if I’m not leaving the house.  I don’t see the point.  I spend too much of my time at home cleaning up or working on sewing or craft projects to be dressed in nice clothes.  If it’s a day when everyone is at school and I’m out running errands I will put in the effort to wear a cute outfit with accessories and all of that.  I like it this way.  My husband could care less.  I’d rather be comfortable.

Also, I am not the type of person to turn myself into something I’m not.  I do not want to be Scarlett Johansson.  I have nothing against her but I have no desire for blond hair, implants and the facial surgery required to make me look like her.  I do have issues with my body.  I’m pretty sure most of us do.  I am working on those issues.  I try not to spend a lot of time dwelling on it.  I want to set a good example for my daughters who have the disadvantage of growing up in this media crazed world.  I’m confident in myself and in my marriage.  (I should be – you should try sending your thirty-something handsome husband back to college where 19 year old girls are barely dressed at all!  Whew!)

All of that being said, at the moment I looked down at my ironing board and sweats, I felt quite toady.

As I have written many times before, I am a lucky woman.  My family and my true friends love me just the way I am.  Even though he has seen me at my absolute worst, my husband makes me feel beautiful every day.  Still…..