Sunday, December 25, 2011

christmas marathon...

For weeks you plan, and purchase, and wrap.

And then your 11-year-old turns into a strung-out junkie screaming for your stash.

I couldn't sleep last night, for 1000 reasons, but the one I'll tell you about is CHRISTMAS SPIRIT. Not mine (which has been severely lacking for obvious reasons) but the ethos of the season. I could feel the energy of the children trying desperately to sleep, dreaming of gifts and frenzy.

In my younger years, my sister and I could literally make ourselves hallucinate on Christmas Eve. We were sofuckingexcited we saw little bunnies dressed in suit jackets running around our room opening their little bunny presents.

My son, as an only child, doesn't have a sibling to feed off of, but he manages to find that sweet psychosis just fine. He is such a wonderful guy, and even though the gifts were modest this year he was nothing but smiles and hugs all day. Even running around from family to friends was easy. He joked with his cousins, helped me clean and cook and sang carols all the while. As he was going to sleep he told me that he felt "blissful" and that it had be an amazing day.

He reminds me every day how grateful I am to be his mom...and I hope everyone out there found a reason to smile today :)

And now I am going to be a bad santa and steal from his stocking...muah ha ha!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

seven years...

It doesn't feel like it has been seven years since my father died.

Christmas Eve. Seven year prior.

He died about 2 in the morning. I took the call from the nurse. I told my mother that her husband of 52 years was gone. And we drove to the hospital so she could see his body.

My son was 4 years old...and didn't have much clue what was happening. That Christmas Eve I had a grieving mother and a four-year-old who was convinced Santa wouldn't be able to find us at my parents' house. He was partly right, since his gifts were back in Tallahassee - and all the adults around him were falling apart.

We left my mother in the care of my brother and scurried home to Tallahassee. I stayed up all night putting together his toys, wrapping his gifts, and stuffing his stocking. It was so surreal.

I know my Dad didn't want to ruin Christmas. Or maybe he did ;) He never really liked family gatherings all that much. Especially Christmas. He was the guy who would have all the discarded wrapping paper cleaned up and in the garbage by 7:45 AM and then promptly ignore the rest of us with whatever he could find on TV. But that was only in his later years, after decades of drinking had taken away his good heart.

My childhood Christmas' were a different story...he would sing carols, decorate with near recklessness, cleverly hide our presents or pretend he had lost them altogether, and saved his change all year to make sure our faces exploded with smiles when we unwrapped just what we wanted. The Christmas after I graduated from acupuncture school with my doctorate of oriental medicine, he got me a placard for my desk. One side (which would face my clients) read: "Dr. Karen Stump" and the other side, facing me, read: "Dr. Binky". That was his nickname for me, Binky. He said he wanted something on my desk that reminded me how proud he was of me. He had gotten it made at the local flea market. And still to this day it is one of my most favorite gifts of all time.

As much as I hated watching my mother say goodbye to her husband, I hated that first Christmas without my father even more...

And each Christmas Eve I miss him.

So this evening I light a candle for my dad, and for those I love that are far away. Thinking about the family we are born into and the family we choose...and sending big hugs and best wishes for a merry christmas.

Friday, December 23, 2011

god bless...

I hear that quite a bit. Not just when I sneeze either.

My patients seem to show their gratitude by blessing me, praying with me, some even saying they feel that God sent me to be their nurse. Funny how no one minds I am a lesbian as long as they don't actually know about it.

Just the other day I was heading into Publix behind a woman who dropped a $20 bill without noticing. I scooped it up and ran to return it to her. She told me thankyouthankyou and "LordJesus sent me an angel today!"

I'm sure most people would have done the same...though it is strange how often I have the opportunity to help strangers. The person in the wheel chair who can't reach the can of soup they want, the comcast repair guy who's truck needs a jump, the lost old man who can't remember where he parked his car. And maybe it isn't all that special, maybe lots of folks are helping out strangers every day and just not talking about it.

But these days, when my heart is sooooooo darn heavy, the temptation is to drive on by the broken down comcast guy and pretend I don't notice. But I don't drive by. I stop. I help. And the stranger usually references God working through me.

Interesting God would tell all his followers to hate it when I fall in love, but still send me on all these errands.

The drama from my recent breakup continues...and I come home and can still smell her in my house. I've been too sad to even VACUUM (which has never happened in my LIFE) but I don't think it's my lack of housecleaning that keeps her smell lingering. I think our bodies hold on to memories. Sights and sounds and smells and feelings. It takes a long time to move away from our memories - and you have to want to. Which I don't.

I know a big reason my love left was her faith. So each time someone tells me how much God loves me I think about her. She was torn apart trying to reconcile her feelings for me with what her church had taught her. And I lost.

Tonight was a night spent listening to songs of an effortless love.

And then seriously regretting that choice.

Want me to share?

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

dating fun part 3,429

This is an old post that I never shared because I was too embarrassed. But hey, at least it isn't about my recent breakup! Right? So enjoy an old but true tale...


somehow I just don't give up.

Even though I have less free time than a sitting president and am picky and mean.

Why then, do I keep trying?

Ahhhhhh - I think it is that pesky feeling of HOPE. The hope that I'll remember what it feels like to come home from work with someone waiting, someone who is happy to see me and wants to hear about my boring day. Someone who'll see a movie they think is lame just because they KNOW I would love it :)

So the online presence continues...

And finally I run across someone who doesn't disgust me with the first email! WOW! Look! They know how to use punctuation! But not gratuitously!!!!!!!!!!! THEY DO NOT TYPE IN ALL CAPITAL LETTERS! And they ask me questions about my life while also sharing stories about themselves! Giddy with expectation, we begin to online chat (this is known as second-base in the online dating world).

Chatting is going well too...she doesn't care that I am unemployed. In fact, she is super impressed that I am in nursing school. She adores children and has a fancy degree that she uses in a field I find INTERESTING! HOLY EFFING CRAP! It is like a fairy tale! She asks for my phone number (third base) and I throw caution to the wind and instead ask her out. I am tired of the protracted "hi" and "where are you from" and blah blah blah from too many years in this ritual and decide to jump right into a face-to-face interaction. She is young (too young, according to my sister) but I don't care. After all, I am far too immature to date someone my own age.

So we decided to meet.

She explained that she has a driving phobia and would I mind picking her up...

Hmmmmmm. "Driving phobia??" What could that mean? Did driving phobia = DUI? Or maybe she was raised in NYC and never learned to drive? I was scared/interested and tried to ask her a bit about it, but she laughed it off as just something that she was "working through". But hey, I can handle phobias, right? Hell I have a few myself! So off I went.

I pulled into her driveway and saw her standing there waiting. I could tell right away she was different. Not different in that fairy-tale-outta-a-dream kind of way. But different as in, neurologically speaking. My student nurse brain quickly ran through the possibilities...cerebral palsy? Spinal cord injury? Wow. The girl had a walker. That was a lot of information to process in the moment it took to pull into her driveway...Funny she had mentioned that she had recently lost her dog, 3 computers, a gas fireplace and a yoga mat...but not a WALKER. I mean, I have dated a girl in a wheelchair before AND HAD EVEN MENTIONED THAT TO HER - so you think she would have felt OK bringing it up. Nonetheless, I scooped her up and we went out to eat.

At the restaurant I remembered why it is so very very very important to talk on the phone with someone before agreeing to meet in person. This girl talked over me, told 20 minute long stories about her cousins and neighbors and favorite episodes of Law and Order and described in detail her gun collection. She told me over and over what a good listener I was as she detailed how Jimmy (not sure who he was) once got mad at Susan (maybe Susan was her sister?) but really he should have been mad at Christine because the trouble really started back in 1997 when they moved out of that crap-hole apartment into the city for a fresh start and...well I couldn't keep up and was silently imagining how I really had broken the cardinal rule of online dating. Do NOT agree to meet someone until you have heard the sound of their voice, their cadence when telling a story and the subtle back and forth of the conversational rhythm. But I had broken the rule and so now I had to sit and listen to poor Jimmy's woes (maybe Jimmy was her ex husband?! I thought I heard the word fiance a few minutes back).

After dinner I took her home and walked her inside... into her house...don't ask me why because I don't have an answer for you. Her home was of course covered in dog fur (though her dog had been dead for 3 months). There were literally 25 empty coke cans lining every horizontal surface of the if they were trophies earned over the years. Both sectional couches were piled high with (what I hope was) clean laundry and the dust bunnies across the baseboards were plentiful enough to start a union and demand better living conditions.

Oh Hope, how you make me do things that defy all reason! Hope can make me throw caution to the wind and try over and over to find a human connection. Hope allows me to dream of walking hand in hand along the beach at sunset. But the reality of the world sits across from you at dinner and says "I just don't get how fat people aren't too embarrassed to eat in public" (yes she actually said that).

And somewhere in the universe Hope is giving a high-five to Bitterness and saying "OK, she's all yours now!"

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

moving boulders

As a parent you try really hard to be strong for your little one. But today was so damn hard that I wasn't successful at that. I had to go to school to do some requisite paperwork for graduation...and despite my very best planning...the former girlfriend was there.

Ahhhhhh and she was beautiful with her hair all fixed and her clothes all perfect and she did NOT look like she had just been crying at Publix (as I had been) just because a damn Indigo Girls song had been playing. It was devastating to be so close to her and be so unwanted. So I returned home and sat in front of my house trying to stop crying before I came back to my little man. But I couldn't.

I came inside and he wanted to know what had happened. So I told him I had seen our recently lost friend and that I missed her very much. I told him that I thought she probably didn't want to talk to me anymore...that she and I had hurt each others feelings really bad and she didn't want to be friends with me.

He was really quiet for a long time and then told me I should learn to be better at letting things go. He said that he pictures himself sitting at a really pretty table. And sometimes people throw things on his table that he doesn't want there. Some of the things are easy to knock off, like scraps of paper, but other things are big and heavy like rocks or rare earth magnets. You can't move those things off your table by yourself, that's when you ask for help. So my 11-year old son explains that you can ask God to help, or a good friend you trust, and sometimes it takes a long time to get your table clean again. He says the tricky part is not adding your own garbage to the table...because that makes cleaning it off way harder.

So he gives me a hug and laughs and says "I guess that's a metaphor!"

Holy shit my boy is brilliant.

Tonight I will that are cluttering up my table. And I honestly hope my former lover is doing as well as she seems...because there is absolutely no need for both of us to be hurting this badly.

Here's to the next 24 hours...may it pass more quickly than the last.

and it goes something like this

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

bad first dates...

I have been on LOTS of dates. Especially first dates ;)

Once upon a time I was trolling and I struck up an email connection with a young lovely lady. After a few correspondences we decided to meet.

At the time I was VERY physically active (this is before nursing school had worn me down to a pale weakling) so we decided to go off-road biking for our first date. She picked me up in her sporty little car and we were off.

Now this woman had been a competitive athlete of sorts in her time, and she was gliding through the bike trails like her bike had an electric motor. I was doing my best to keep up, look cool, and still maintain enough oxygen in my bloodstream to have witty banter.

It wasn't working.

The miles stretched on and I as I furiously tried to keep pace I veered just a bit off track and a wayward branch reached out and jammed itself into my spokes! My bike and I flipped in midair and I landed squarely on the frame...catching the full force of the metal with the most delicate part of my womanly self.


She was so far ahead she didn't even NOTICE (which I thought was a bad sign in a future wife to be honest) and I tried my best to get back on the bike and continue on. But wow was I hurting.

After our ride she wanted to have some lunch...and I was torn between the excitement of continuing the date and the fear that I had split my pelvic girdle into fragments. I mean, she was cute and smart and fun to be with...but I was pretty sure I was going to need major surgery to fix my hoohaa. Of course I continued on to lunch and never mentioned the little accident.

It is so hard trying to be cool.

I spent the next two days with ice in my nether regions and wondering why they don't make women's mountain bikes...but at least I got a second date out of it ;)

Sunday, December 11, 2011

sometimes spared...


driving around feeling like a woman who hasn't slept or eaten or had ANY CAFFEINE for days and days and days...

A poor, pitiful woman in the horrible limbo after discovering it is time for a referral to a specialist but before the cardiologist has an opening...

going through the motions and being pretty proud of myself for doing that. Being brave for my kid and my family and my friends.

so basically today was a lot like yesterday :)

I pulled up to a stop light and waited patiently for my turn. I closed my eyes just for a second - really just a blink - and saw (in my mind) a little Honda rush across the cross street and nearly run off the road in front of me. It was as clear as if it had been real.

But when I opened my eyes I was alone at the stop light.

So when the light turned green I was scared to go. I slowly edged into the intersection as I saw a little Honda barreling up the road. I stopped immediately as the careless dude nearly smashed into my car, screeching his tires and swerving up onto the sidewalk.

I pulled into a nearby parking lot, kind of overcome by what had just happened.

Honestly my first thought was "God saved me!!". And my second thought was "just to make sure I stay good and heartbroken". I laughed to myself thinking that all the evangelical Christians were right and God was keeping the gays and lesbians around just to make them miserable. Which I admit is an absurd thought...right?

Mellow-dramatic? hyperbole? Same difference.

Tomorrow I will work on being grateful for the warning today. I will pick up my son from school and hug him mighty tight and then get a kitten. Or a tattoo. Or both.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

ready for fun?

Alrighty folks - cardiac telemetry is on! The doc wants me to recreate a typical "bad" day. Which is not going to be hard at all...

Step one - get the holter:

Step two - have some diet coke (obviously the best step):

Step three - dip into some memories and take a good stiff drink:

Then I'll go out and take a long bike ride - get my heart rate up! I've been scared to work out at all these days until I figure out what is going on. There have been a few moments recently when I have had to go down on my knees to keep from passing out - so I have been worried that popping in a P90X DVD might not be conducive to staying conscious ;)

Wish me luck my's hoping the monitor gets a clear record of my precious little busted up heart and I start to get some answers.

Monday, December 05, 2011


Tomorrow I get to strap on some electrodes and hopefully get a little closer to figuring out what in the ever-loving-heck is happening with my heart. Physiologically speaking of course. It seems I am having some funky heart rhythms of late.

Interesting enough - my spiritual heart has also recently been torn up. Is it possible that all this cardiac trouble is rooted in love lost? I am the first to admit that your mind is mighty. Mighty enough to cause physical symptoms, and mighty enough help with healing.

The dysrhythmia started before I even knew my girlfriend was planning on leaving town, leaving me. Did my intuition pick up on her secret plans days before she told me? Because I would put money on the timing. I think she moment she gave up on us is the moment everything went to shit with my myocardium.

My doctor says things like "premature ventricular contractions" and "dysrhythmia" and "ectopic beats"...he says give up caffeine and get back on the treadmill. He throws meds at me and I dutifully give them a try. And it is getting incrementally better. Teeny, tiny little increments. But hey, I have been feeling so crappy I will take even teeny, tiny little bits of better.

The other day in the hospital I had a combative, confused, elderly woman as a patient. She punched me, bit me, and fought with every single staff member. I was tasked with keeping her in bed and trying my best to keep her safe. You'd be surprised how strong a demented 80-year old can be. Just a few hours into her care I was already exhausted. She couldn't communicate her needs at all, prior strokes had jumbled her brain. She spoke in angry, nonsensical phrases...words thrown together in ways only she understood.

I kept trying to reassure her. I spoke softly. Then was quiet. I even tried singing old songs she might remember from her childhood...nothing calmed her down. Then out of my mouth I started calling her "nanna". I have no idea why, it just seemed like the thing to do. She made eye contact with me for the first time all day and responded by calling me "grandpa". She became a different person from that moment on - calm, at peace, and a pleasure to be around. The nurses and support staff were shocked by the transition and I was very very very very happy we could remove the restraints.

Her daughter arrived from out-of-town much later that evening and when I retold the story she explained that all the grandchildren had always called her Nanna, and the patient's husband had been Grandpa. The daughter was overjoyed that I had made a connection with her mom...and didn't seem creeped out even though her mom continued to talk to me as if I was her long-dead husband ;)

So was I intuitive enough to find the one word that could pull my patient out of her panic? Or was "nanna" just a lucky guess? I don't know...but either way the result was the same. My patient was finally able to rest.

So maybe I am that sensitive. Because my suspicion about the cardiac monitor is that the physician will discover that I have lost the love of my life. And just as a first kiss will give your chest that wonderful flutter of hope - a broken heart can cause it to beat irregularly, without rhythm, and without purpose. If you are lucky enough to be as sensitive as me.

Which honestly I don't recommend.

On the plus side, if you tune in tomorrow I might just include a picture of my sexy self all wired up and transmitting live ;)

Friday, December 02, 2011

no explanation...

you never get to know the answers to so many questions...

One of the reasons I have always been drawn to hard sciences is because I had this illusion that you got to know the why's. And there are some absolutes out there. A low serum potassium will send a patient into a heart dysrhythmia...but give 'em a big old horse pill of K and sure enough they get better! Yay science!

But mostly even doctors and nurses rely on best guesses, trial and error and intuition. Sure we sound confident when we talk about things - because that's our job. We are trained to be the calm in the storm - the buoy in the rough waters. And truth be told, you'll have two patients with identical symptoms, give them the same treatments, and one gets better and goes home to enjoy their family while the other guy crashes and dies.

What's the difference between those two patients? The doctors don't know. Ask too many questions and they'll fall back on statistics or empirical anecdotes but they don't *really* know. So what if the difference is hope? Or love? Or faith? Well the scientific method can't prove it - but we nurses have a hunch that hope matters. And though our job means telling the hard truth - we can also provide hope.

Tonight I came home from a 12-hour shift and was tucking my son into bed. He started crying. He was missing a close family friend who left town suddenly. Here I was listening to my 11-year-old ask some hard questions...none of which I had the answer to. Why did she leave? When would she come back? I could see his little broken heart pouring out in his tears and I wanted to comfort him, to fix it. But I couldn't explain away her absence...losing someone you love hurts like hell...even when you're 11. Or maybe even more so...

So my job was to be that calm in the storm for him. To lay down next to him and just be there while he wrestled with the very grown up reality of losing love. And I was mindful of that wondrous little piece of Pandora's box hiding in the corner after all the ills of the world spilled out...hope. I couldn't give him hope she would return to us - but hope for the future, and faith that more fun and frolic was awaiting him.

I am so grateful to have the chance to be strong for my son...and I desperately hope he is crafting some tools to weather life's storms. On a good day, I think I do a pretty decent job ;)

But then he escapes to dreams and I wish like hell I had someone looking out for me when my tears come.

Too bad you can't order hope on Amazon. Cause I would pay for some next-day shipping!!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

love this....

love her voice! It was hard to find a version of the video that isn't all weird. So forgive the link to myspace. If I could sing like her I would sing this myself...

Monday, November 28, 2011

life without

I remember trying to work my forty hour weeks and still keep up with my two-year-old. I felt like I was underwater most days. Exhausted, happy and joyous, but exhausted. My sister slapped a diet coke in my hand and said "this is how you do baby!" And wow did that caffeine really help! Prior to that moment I was nearly vegan. And my idea of a sweet treat was barley malt sweetened graham crackers.

Those days are clearly long gone.

But now I have overdone it. Because when my little delicate body has too much caffeine, it apparently drops into a dysrhythmic state of affairs.

A heart that *should* be going all boom BOOM boom BOOM boom BOOM suddenly feels like more a slinky thrown down some stairs. booooom BOOOM BOOOM BOOOOOM BOOOOM BBOooooooOOOOOOM. As if there is a weasel stuck inside trying to claw its way out through my pericardium. Alas, as with many good things, too much can kill you.

Saying goodbye to diet coke wasn't as tough as I thought it would be...maybe when you do something really hard for the right reasons it just feels better.

And I heard a rumor that there is some sort of clear liquid flowing from the faucet in my kitchen that is allegedly good for me. I might check it out later.

Here's hoping I get back to the BOOM boom BOOM boom soon.

Sunday, November 27, 2011


ahhhhhhhhhh - I would do just about anything to feel good again.

not sure not sure...

It's so strange to me how my life unraveled. I had a one-year plan, a five-year plan, and was debt-free.

Solid in a long-term relationship, perched on the edge of completing my master's degree, pregnant and ready to begin the next adventure.

But then my girlfriend left me and my four-month pregnant self...

My perfectly planned life froze.

Fast forward a few depressing months and I began to plan again.

I moved across the country, settled for a job that paid me well and tried my best to figure out how to parent alone. Establishing an even keel isn't easy as a parent, much less a single mom - but I found my rhythm and remembered how much I loved life. Each day with my little man was better than the last...

Then another shitstorm hit. I lost my job, smashed my car and once again my special, special plans were at the bottom of a smoldering heap of yuck.

I always thought we get presented with challenges over and over for a reason. We are meant to learn to navigate through the trials with a bit more grace than humans usually show. And I seemed to be needing some practice in faith.

Faith is easy when things are smooth. It's nearly effortless to believe all is well when things are going your way. But to hold that faith when you feel so alone, so scared and totally frozen amid your destroyed plans? Well that takes a serious shift in perspective.

One of the tricks is to stay right in the moment. I can guarantee that most of the fear creeping in has to do with prior injustices or upcoming hurdles. But if you can keep your focus just on the second you are in, and feel safe and strong, well you can consider that a great second :)

Pretty soon you will find yourself stringing a few decent moments together...and then a few more...and then before you know it maybe you'll even have an entire day of feeling peace.

But the fear still comes of course.

And today I found myself wondering why in the hell I left an easy career as a software analyst to make half as much as a nurse. Nobody poops on software analysts.

But then I realized something...nursing has forced me to retrain my brain to zero in on the moment. When you are running around in the hospital with eight different patients and 20 things to do for each one you really learn about staying 100% in the present. If you actually planned out your entire shift and wrote down what you had to accomplish during your twelve hours you would run screaming out the front doors and just get a job at a coffee shop.

So here I sit again perched on the edge of big change...but this time? Without a plan. Don't think I have gone all buggy on you though! I have a general direction, some awesome goals, and even a wish or two - but I may finally be figuring out that I have wasted too much time and too much energy trying to control things that can't be controlled.

It's faith time people, and it feels a lot better than a five-year plan ;)

Sunday, October 02, 2011

the stinkiest sweetest boy ever...

My poor Mr. Bear was laid to rest last Friday.

He was only 4 and a half years old :(

His body was being overrun with tumors for about the past year...and recently it just became too much.

My little man and I miss him so much. The house feels too clean and too quiet.

Here's hoping his spirit is frolicking and fighting the ninja kitties who were constantly trying to steal his kibble.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

no matter how sad I get....

this always always cheers me up...

Monday, August 15, 2011

magic box...

Hey wanna know a secret? Come super close because even most of my friends don't know...

Promise not to tell?

Well I believe in a higher power! Now before you get too up in my grill about it please understand I have a hard time even calling it G-O-D because his little followers have sure taken all the fun out of it. They read messages of love and peace and turn it into an excuse to take up arms against others, burn up herbalists at the stake, and bring a baseball bat to extract justice on "the gays".

Nonetheless I think faith is one important concept. And it is hard as a lesbian to find a place of faith that feels like home. A few years back I made the rounds of some churches here in town. If you eliminate the ones that outright hate gays the selection is pretty scarce. One place was too hippy dippy even for me (meditations, changing and group hugs! spare me!), another didn't even mention Jesus, and most were others were only willing to ignore the gay issue rather than come out and support it.

So mostly my faith is a private matter. One thing I do is borrowed from Anne Lamott. It's called a God Box. I have this beautiful container sitting on a bookshelf in my bedroom. When things come up in my life that are too big for me to fix, too hard to carry, or too painful to move through - I put them in the box. Sometimes it is a phrase scribbled on a piece of paper, more often it is a little token that represents my struggle. Now keep in mind this isn't advised for stuff like speeding tickets or overdue credit card bills! But an overriding fear of failing at nursing school, or a bracelet from love lost - that is perfect!

Some stuff stays in there for years...and occasionally it gets to the point of needing a cleaning. I really enjoy reading back through everything. It is like a diary of the darkest parts of my life. At one point I had an expired epi-pen in there. Terrified of every day I sent my son to preschool knowing that a carelessly placed peanut could put him in the hospital.

Somehow, just putting a symbol of the problem away for the box to carry for a while really helps. And the small distance between where I sit at my computer as I type this and where the box sits on my shelf is filled with faith. And it helps me remember that all will be well - even if I can't find my way.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

the end...

a heartbroken woman asks: does only a fool walk down a path of certain destruction?

and the poet answers: no, an optimist does.

Thursday, August 11, 2011


true love is :
  • not needing to shave your legs
  • not feverishly cleaning your house
  • an empty fridge
  • no covers on the bed
hours pass like moments and you feel content just listening to sounds of her smile

her skin feels like home

you effortlessly give away your clothes, your heart, your dreams...they were hers all along. From the moment she touched them.

even an approaching storm isn't scary because you have someone to share the umbrella with...and who minds getting a little wet anyway...?

Tuesday, August 09, 2011


It is strange to find yourself in a "career". To look around your cubicle and see people in suits and posters with kittens "hanging in there". Attending meetings with power points that no one pays attention to. Business dinners and kissing ass.

Even stranger still is losing that career. Stepping off the treadmill and trying to remember what inspired you all those years ago when you still thought you could change the world.

As I stand facing my last semester of nursing school, ready to begin what NPR likes to call my "encore career" I can't help but feel breathless and scared outta my mind. We all know that euphemism of "encore career" sounds nice but who in their right mind would give up a comfy corporate job to clean up poop all day?! Where one mistake could kill someone?! All that phrase really means is trying to feed your son as the world shatters and rumbles around you.

A memory comes back to me some nights recently. Poised on the edge of my senior year of high school I was beginning the long process of applying for colleges. I had a 4.0 GPA, was captain of the volleyball team and didn't even know what a lesbian was. Ahhhh simpler times, right? I had sent off for three applications. Princeton, Yale and Duke. As I opened the packets I was awestruck immediately. I had never even seen fancy card stock printing and felt special just writing my name on the top of the applications. My parents weren't paying any attention to me - nor had they even asked about the process. The deeper I got into the paperwork, though, the more they noticed.

They stood over me and watched for all of 10 seconds before starting to tear me down. They criticized my penmanship, the mess I was making as I spread out on the table, and I braced myself for a fight. My Dad paced the kitchen saying that it was out of the question for me to even apply to ivy league schools. He wasn't going to be able to give me one cent towards tuition and thought somehow I was rubbing his face in his middle-class values by even applying. Ever idealistic I told him I could get loans, grants, tuition waivers! If we were as poor as he said I would easily qualify, right?

The discussion turned into arguing and culminated with him taking all my applications and ripping them up. He was insulted those fancy schools even wanted money just for applying and thought "those kinds of places" weren't for "people like us". That beautiful paper was ceremoniously thrown into the garbage as he told me how much better off I would be at the state college in town.

Well I was mad. So I refused to even apply for the stupid schools in town. My mother filled out the application to Florida State and of course I was accepted. My senior year spiraled out of control. I spent most days at the park and only showed up for tests. I refused to even walk in my graduation and I could have cared less about Florida State. So my college experience lasted about two weeks as I drove to campus, parked my car, lit a joint and watched the cute girls walk to class. I never stepped one foot onto campus. Luckily I also never got busted for weed ;)

I think about that moment at the kitchen table from time to time. I wonder what would have happened if my parents would have just given me a shot.

For all the wonderful things my father did for me later in life...he was a total dick those days. And I can't even imagine what happened to his soul that would make him rip up those applications. I used to joke that he had a blue-collar chip on his shoulder. Or maybe he was trying to protect me from what he thought would be catastrophic failure.

I am not sure a girl from Macon, Georgia could have made it at Princeton, but it would have been amazing to try.

Saturday, July 30, 2011


As a mom one of the first things you fear is losing your baby. To sickness, or lack of knowledge or boogeymen. I mean, prior to having a baby my biggest concern was leaving the bowl of cat food full before I spent the evening out ;) But then you have this itty bitty love ball that couldn't survive more than a few hours without you and it can be terrifying.

And just when you get it all figured out they go and start to move on their own. And holy shit that is a new world. Suddenly you realize your house is akin to a navy seals testing ground - electrical outlets and shards of glass and 100 pound lamps with frayed cords are everywhere. Your little crawler is the baby version of McGuyver, fashioning a shiv from a forgotten pen and OHMYGAWD HOW DID HE FIND GUNPOWDER?!?!

But luckily they also come pre-programmed with a tether. And the smaller they are, the shorter the line. So you can take your toddler to the park and he won't usually get out of your sight. They constantly look back to check the expression on your face. If you are good, they are good, and they'll keep exploring. As they grow up that tether gets stretched - and it tugs on your heart a bit each year. Independence makes a momma very proud, but pulls those heart strings mighty tight.

Grown-ups have tethers too...

I have had quite a few in my mother, my church, my girlfriend, my job

Funny or strangely or inevitably those have faded. Interesting to experience.

But I still have a few left, and seem to be able to create new ones. Which is a damn good thing because I sure still need them! Because sometimes I still feel as if I am perched on the edge of a big old slide, looking back to see the expression on my mom's face to make sure I can handle the ride.

Thursday, July 14, 2011


two hours ago I had a wonderfully warm hand in mine...

two days ago I realized I could change...

two months ago I watched my baby boy leave for the summer...

two years ago I lost my career, my car and my identity...

two decades ago I swore I would never stop running...

and too often I forget that I am just where I need to be ;)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

mother unit...

I don't know very much about this whole wide world...and the things I don't know seem to grow exponentially whilst my 100%, for-sure knowledge evaporates with each year.

But I do know that I am a good mamma. I always tell people it just comes easy to me. And even though before I had my son I had never changed a diaper or helped a kid tie their shoe - the moment I first held my son I told him "I've got you" and I meant it. I could be be just what that little baby needed. And I do a pretty damn good job most days (well except for the cussing) ;)

This past weekend was my birthday. My maternal unit was hell bent on taking me out to get me "whatever I needed". I don't enjoy spending time with her, certainly not on special birthdays...and honestly I am old enough to know better. But a little teeny part of my heart still begs for attention from her, and craves any act that can be construed as motherly. So against my sister's advice, I agreed.

Now please understand my devoted reader, that I am living on public assistance, sweat and hope. Each month I come closer and closer to complete financial dissolution. And my only pair of shoes has a hole. Which I hate. Even welfare moms have pride. So I asked if I could maybe get a new pair of shoes and my mother is giddy with the idea.

I pick her up and we begin our day. Of course she needs to run a few errands first...the bank, some stupid ass fabric store (I know, I know, the cussing is bad). Once we hit the shoe store I know I am in trouble. She plops herself down and starts trying on everything in the store. She has 2 sales people helping her pick out the perfect shoes for church as I nose around for something lesbian chic and not too pricey.

My mother decides on a pair of shoes for herself...and of course she needed socks and whatnot. Her grand total? Nearly $300. She looks over at me and says now she doesn't really have enough to get me a pair - but she could give me $40 cash towards anything I want. She then holds onto her package and says how bad she feels for getting a pair of shoes for herself on my birthday but she really needed them.


I didn't take the money. And once again I remember why I don't ask for anything from that woman.

But...if I try really really super hard to look on the bright side I can honestly say that having such a poor excuse of a mother helped me figure out the type of relationship I wanted to have with my own son. And maybe learning how to get what I needed for myself from such a young age prepared me to be in this world on my own.

Still it was a sucky way to spend a birthday - luckily my sister didn't gloat too much ;)

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

She's Too Good For Everyone

Been there. Done that. Got the t-shirt.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

and so it continues...

well my online dating has started predictably enough. There is one particular woman who POUNCED once she saw my very stunning profile. She emailed a few times, trying to pull off a casual air. The trouble with desperation that it is impossible to hide.

And I found myself wondering if maybe I was being overly harsh. I mean, surely it isn't possible to accurately assess someone from a few thumbnail photos and a paragraph posted online. Why was I so quick to discount someone? My friends urged a meeting...after all, this woman was certainly not unattractive, professional, had a child and seemed to have impeccable taste in women, right?

So we emailed back and forth - but each time I dreaded composing a response. She bored me even in EMAIL! She sent me her phone number about three times and tried to convince me to meet her either "just for coffee" or perhaps with the kids for "an informal playdate".

But I think either you are drawn to someone or not...and yes, that is apparent via email and chat. And so I (as graciously as possible) let her know that I just wasn't feeling it but best of luck in her future endeavors. thanksforplayingbuhbye.

And this weekend I have time away from my little man. He is in another state having fun and frolicking! And me? Well I spent the afternoon with my adopted parents, mowed my lawn and cleaned my house. The thought did cross my mind that perhaps this type of behavior is why I am single.

So to spice things up I vacuumed naked.

Cause I ain't dead yet ;)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

the bible says so...

Oh man oh man am I in trouble...

I have taken to my house and will shroud myself in secrecy or else the right wing might come stone me. No, not for being a woman-loving single parent who has been known to work on the sabbath - but because I have cursed at my mother! And the bible clearly states:

"Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death". Leviticus 20:9

Who knew? I knew god hated gays, shellfish, adultery and poly-cotton blends - but I did NOT know I wasn't allowed to call my mother a self-centered, ego-maniacal b$#tch!


Wednesday, March 16, 2011

best foot forward...

Did you know that if someone lists their occupation as "everything from a medical professional to studying the nature of human beings" that what they really mean is that they took some pre-nursing courses ten years ago and currently work at Wal-Mart?

I love online dating. Really.

Monday, March 14, 2011

daylight revenge

Ah dating has given me enough fodder for a year's worth of blogging.

Spring is definitely my favorite season. My azalea bush is getting ready to explode with blooms and even my struggling little buckeye looks amazing! Interesting though, as much as I love spring time, I am usually single this time o'year. In fact, I can't remember the last time I had a sweet birthday kiss from an adorable babe on any recent March 26th.

But ever hopeful that this could be my lucky year, I take a deep breath and resolve to be less of a judgmental ass as the emails and winks come my way.

And even though it seems I am peaking alot of interest from the Alabama demographic, I'll resist berating every cowgirl with dialup access to the world wide interweb.

So it is in the spirit of spring that I will give folks at fair chance. Just because someone may choose to wear pleated jeans doesn't mean she is a loser, right?! Maybe the picture is from an 80's party! Farah Fawcett rocked some feathered hair, after all - and perhaps it should have never gone out of style!

There are a few contenders in the ring at the moment. An MD from a coastal town, a self described "country gal" from who the heck knows where, a lady from Alabama who lists her occupation as "examining the very spirit of human beings", and a 20-something techie who probably has a momma-complex.

Springtime games beginning in 3...2...

Saturday, March 12, 2011

match point

I could write a blog just about online dating.

Because it is ABSURD! I know I am picky, I know I have some prickly edges on occasion - but really what in god's green earth are these people DOING?!?!

The latest wink comes from a woman whose screen name is gentaltouch57.

I really really really hope she was shooting for "gentletouch57" because what it is closer to is "GENITALtouch57". So either she was offering a cervical exam or her typos are atrocious.

She didn't bother with an email - a wink is enough to let a lucky girl know that her gentals are about to be touched by a woman born in 1957.

Friday, March 11, 2011

silly me...

There are two versions of the story of what happened yesterday...

According to my friends I carelessly left a cutting board, kitchen knife and MY HEART on the doorstep of a woman who no longer loves me.

Obviously that isn't MY side of the story ;)

Because I'll tell you something, my heart is not on a cutting board ready for surgery. It is not wrong to thoughtfully and carefully express yourself, is it? I wasn't hurtful or dramatic - I tried to use as few words as possible but still get my point across.

And truthfully I was compelled to try - my heart took over and defied all the logic and reason my brain could hurl at it. Complete system override. How do I feel today though, after hearing no response to my romantic attempt at reconnecting? Well today my brain is kicking my heart and yelling "I TOLD YOU SO - YOU IDIOT".

Secretly my heart is proud of trying...because you never know for sure until you try. And since I really believe this woman is worth it...I tried. But my heart is dutifully taking its lumps and hurting. Hurting worse than I could have imagined.

Maybe, just maybe, me putting myself on the line might have worked. We've all done nutty things for love. At least I didn't bring my guitar and camp out under her window singing! Right? These types of "take me back" gestures work in the damn movies. I picture John Cusack holding that boom box over his head and fighting for the girl of his dreams. Expressing himself! And it worked for him! But, if it didn't work? What if days pass and I don't hear anything from her? Or ohmygod even worse than that what if I get some long email containing a laundry list of why the relationship could never ever be successful? Well that would be HORRIBLE. Now my brain is really feeling superior about my heart's choice. Dang.

But maybe knowing for sure she is over me would help cauterize my heart's open wound and let the process of healing begin. Or send me to her doorstep with a boom box.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

I told you it would be funny...

DAY ONE! Not even 24 hours after activating my online profile I get the following email FROM A 50 YEAR OLD MAN!

Hello, how are you doing today?. I just went through your profile and it was indeed interesting. i must confess that you look very beautiful and still young in your looking. i will love to know more about you, who knows there might have some thing in common in between us. Here is my yahoo dot com ID garryk12.......i will be very glad to read email from you in my inbox as soon as you can, my busy schedule wouldn't allow me browsing through always, my account will be expering soon, i hope to hear from you soon, till then.Remain bless.

Your's admirer

So of course I checked out his profile. A nice looking 50 year old man hugging his children, standing next to a lake, and enjoying himself with his good looking friends. From the looks of the man, he is definitely from Buffalo, NY and really loves the shit out of kids. And the tone of his email is so sweet too! I mean, don't you agree?! He must confess that I am still young in my looking! YAY! And he will be very glad to read email from me in his inbox as soon as I can! How sweet is that?! Sadly though, his busy schedule wouldn't allow him browsing through always, and even sadder is that his account will be expering soon. But he did wish me to remain bless - which really cinched it for me - he's a KEEPER!

LOL! Hey Nigerians - can you not spend just a little money on English lessons?!?!?!? Or maybe download a few Gray's Anatomy episodes or something and learn we TALK!! I promise more of us will fall for your schemes and mail you money if you learn how to say things like "I hate football" or "My last girlfriend broke it off because she said I reminded her too much of George Clooney".

I wonder who's profile they hacked to grab the pics...prolly some nice guy's Flickr account.

This was such a great idea...I feel so much better about dating now that I know I am still young in my looking.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

what makes me happy...

What makes me happy on a day like today is the countless buds on my azalea bushes outside of my house.

Also, I had an amazing bike ride through the wilds of Tom Brown park this morning.

I can grab a hold of these things and keep my day bright even as the clouds come in - and I wonder when the rain is coming down.

Aren't I poetic?

About a month ago a man contacted me on Facebook. An old childhood "friend" who wanted to reconnect. This guy lived on our block and was about 5 years my senior. He was the neighborhood bully, always prowling around looking for trouble. Many times that trouble he found was me. From the time I was about 8 years old until I was 12 he picked on me, teased me, punched me, and many other things too horrible to write about. Things I don't talk to anyone about. Ever.

Once I remember having a really scraped up knee, not sure how it happened. But that damn guy would hold me down and punch the scab until it feel apart - and would leave my knee streaming blood and hurting like hell. He did this over and over and over until I guess the game got old. I still have a scar.

My parents never seemed to notice me coming home with ripped clothes, missing shoes and bloodied.

Why in the hell this balding fat assed redneck would try to "reconnect" is incomprehensible. Most likely I would imagine he doesn't even think about what happened. And despite all my revenge fantasies I decided to just block him, ignore him, and remove any one of my Macon friends that had him as a facebook friend.

Just seeing his aged face again and reading his idiotic words was horrifying. No matter how much therapy you get...well some memories are just too shitty for words. And the world is tough enough without a giant asshole-sexually-predatory bully forcing neuroses into a little girl's soul.

But today I am not that little girl - and that old man who contacted me can't hurt me. I have my azalea bushes and a bottle of beer and some great friends. And I am going to find an amazing hug any minute now...

Friday, March 04, 2011

today's news

Today we find our protagonist wrestling with "doing the right thing"...

I took my mother to Gainesville to see her older sister. My aunt has always been an amazing person...and she is facing death with grace and compassion. Her faith is wrapping her up in a big warm snuggie and she is doing pretty damn well ;)

My mother has always been a less-than-amazing person...and she found herself weeping at her sister's bedside - inconsolable. But I resisted the urge to leave the room or chide her and instead comforted my mother while feeding ice chips to my aunt. Luckily as a student nurse I happen to excel at ice chip administration!

So no, I didn't want to be missing school to drive my mother to Gainesville...but it is "the right thing to do".

Yesterday morning, before leaving town, I awoke to panic. I was certain that the trip to Gaineville would end with our car flipping over on the highway. I couldn't get the thought out of my head. I am currently studying mental health nursing, so I attempted to allay my fears by diagnosing my brain as "catastrophizing" or "fixating". I then followed up my diagnoses with the appropriate nursing interventions I would use if I ever faced a patient as messed up as myself. Eventually I calmed down by telling myself that it is "normal" to have irrational fears when faced with a dying family member and too much time with the mother unit. Especially while driving to the home town of a girl I am trying so hard to forget.

Upon arriving in Gainesville - we stopped to get lunch. As I sat down to eat a woman rushed into the restaurant screaming "THERE HAS BEEN A HORRIBLE ACCIDENT!!!!"

Three police officers who were also eating jumped up and ran out the door. I went out behind them - as did most of the place - and saw a flipped over car not 200 feet from where I was standing. The driver was a woman about my age. It was a brutal accident and I retreated back inside as the officers went to work...Thirty minutes later, the woman was still trapped in her car and the jaws of life were cutting away the crushed door as EMS stood ready.

I am thinking about that woman alot today - and every time I think of her I send a prayer her way...

I learned that trick in nursing school...when you can't do anything about something just replace the worry and fear with a positive prayer.

It's been a weird week and I really need a hug.

Oh and I am pretty sure my cousin is a serial killer or a child molester. If he tries to touch me one more time I might run away and leave my mother to fend for herself.

Happy Friday ya'll...send smiles my way if you have some to spare.

Friday, February 25, 2011

guess what...

guess what is no longer on the shelves of my local goodwill?!?!?

That's right loyal readers - my former love rocket has a new home.

I debated with my friend as to whether it was purchased or thrown out. My friend, obviously a pessimist, thinks that an employee noticed the dildo and promptly discarded it. But Occam's Razor is a truth I live by. Poorly paraphrased it means that when confronted with more than one possibility, the simplest solution is most often the correct choice. And the simplest solution the the problem of "Where's the sex toy?" is that it was purchased. I rarely see an employee (hourly wage or otherwise) going that extra mile by looking for additional work during their shift. The idea that a goodwill worker would be wandering around looking for miss shelved or out-of-place items seems like a stretch. Have you been to a goodwill? There doesn't appear to be much order other than the color coordinated clothing. Snow skis are next to blenders that are next to broken guitars covered up with dusty fake flowers.

Plus there is the faith factor. I choose to believe that someone is the proud new owner of that thing and I wish them nothing but success with whatever plans they have ;)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

other days...

some days you feel like you are doing good. Making progress...moving on.

some days the sun is warm and you wake up with windows open and little birds singing.

Some days you are inspired, so much so that maybe you decide to get out your summer shorts and sandals. And in pulling out the cedar chest of dormant treasures you spy on the floor a favorite t-shirt that somehow got tossed around and has been hiding hidden for a few months.

And that t-shirt for sure needs to go in the wash, because mixed in with the golden retriever fur bits is a long dark hair left behind from someone that never calls, texts or emails anymore.

"How long until you don't miss someone anymore?" Was my thought as I threw the shirt in the wash...

I blame the sunshine and the perky damn birds.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

the art of parody

My funny new friends who love to make parody videos! I love the song and love their take on it :)

mission accomplished...

-a 22 year old young man flirted with me and asked me for my NUMBER (which I did not give him)

-I had wine and brownies with Ira Glass

-tomorrow includes breakfast with a woman who is involved in a modeling show this weekend

yup. I'm da shit. Take a step back and watch out!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

my baby...

He wakes me up at 6:30 most days..
He can't find ANYTHING on his own...
He needs constant feeding and cleaning...
He comes with science fair projects, reading homework, soccer practice and math club
His shoes will always find the poo to step in
His hands will always make every surface sticky
You'll learn how to cook cupcakes without eggs
You'll witness every childhood sickness in the books
You'll worry and cry


You'll learn, laugh and love more than you even thought was possible. A million times more than you thought was possible.

My little man told me that they were learning all about St. Valentines last week. The culmination of the teachings was an assignment where the kids had to write a narrative about what it would be like to care about something so much you were willing to give your life to be true to your principles. He told me that after the teacher read his writing she called him over and told him that his story had made her cry. I asked him what he wrote about and he said, "!"

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

still there...

If anyone is in the market for a used sex toy ;)

Monday, February 14, 2011


this post is not at your own discretion.

I have a very wonderful friend who was born and raised in Israel. I met her during my graduate studies and we became closer than sisters. Even though she returned to Israel and I don't get to see her nearly as often as I should, she still lives in my heart and I try to rely on pearls of wisdom she has given me over the years.

Once such pearl began with..."My goodness, you have the worst luck of anyone I know!" She said that her tradition says that sometimes bad luck becomes an uninvited guest in your home. What started out as a casual date with Bad Luck can turn into Bad Luck crashing on your couch, using your toothbrush and never washing his dishes! To root him out, she explained, you must go through your home and find "power objects" that no longer serve you. For example...bad luck with romance? Well are you holding on to your ex girlfriends flannel shirt from 10 years ago? Yes? Then get rid of it! Two car accidents in a month? Is there a speeding ticket from that road trip to Colorado five years ago still waiting to be paid? Pay it!

She suggested going through my entire house and looking for old love letters, broken totems, cracked buddhas, a concert stub from the time my girlfriend cheated on me with the bartender - and cleaning house! But you can't just throw these things away.....noooooooooooo! You have to return them, burn them, donate them, throw them out to sea...something that really allows you to "let go".

Periodically over the years I have scavenged through my house - because I am someone who really does put alot of power in silly objects. I really will save a t shirt from a former love just to keep that connection. And even though I hide it way way in the back of my closet...I sure know it's there. And according to old traditional Jewish folk wisdom, this is an open invitation to the bad luck fairy of love.

Now - giving back a shirt or a burning a love letter is one thing...but what about other things? A family engagement ring? A watercolor painting of tulips? sex toy? Yikes!

Ah that is tricky! What on earth could you do to ceremoniously "let go" of a dildo? God knows it hasn't seen any action since our country actually had an economic surplus...but what they heck should be done with it? (Holy cow I am imagining the google searches that are hitting this blog post by mistake with those keywords). You can't burn silicone hot enough to melt it! You certainly shouldn't mail it back to your ex and her happy wife! So through all my purging - the dildo remained. But today, being yet another solitary Valentines Day, I was so determined to turn my dating luck around that I racked my brain until it hit me! The plan would require some bravery, luck, and a friend to keep look out (but then again all good plans require such!).

Look closely at the photo and you will see the shelf of a local Goodwill. Baskets and dishes, a duck teacup of some sort and shirts. Look a bit closer and you will see, a formerly adored sex toy nestled in with other housewares. And for the low low price of $3.99 this item can be YOURS! Because bad luck to me could be hours of fun for the next owner! My icky juju escaped the moment I slapped a price tag on it and placed it on the shelf!

And perhaps, today's healing hijinx will be just what I need to kick that bad luck love fairy out of my house for GOOD! As my friend and I were heading out the door, elated and self satisfied, we spied a young lesbian couple walking in...perhaps shopping for some valentines day spice - but on a budget!

happy monday

so I am sitting here a wee bit hungover and a tad bruised from some silly wrestling choices last evening...and waiting for a callback from my son's dentist since he now has an abscessed tooth (of course) and next on the agenda is running up to the elementary school with a veggie platter for a vday celebration.

So happy valentines day to all of those who still believe in romantic love...this is the card I picked out for myself...

Friday, February 11, 2011


It might be that I am a visual person...when taking a test, I can picture exactly on the page where the needed bit of information was written. I can recall exactly how the unkempt hair from my girlfriend of 100 years ago would fall into her eyes when she looked up from reading when I walked in the door.

Maybe then it makes sense that my memories are like snapshots in time.

The other day I was waiting for my son after school...all the kids were exploding out of the doors so HAPPY to be free. It was a cold and rainy day. 99% of the kids had the full gear for it...hats and jackets...and hurried against the weather. And then I saw the one kid with a short sleeved t-shirt just loitering around...all the adults chiding him about "where's your jacket"...

and I remembered a moment just like that

I was probably 11 years old and waiting for school to start. It was pouring down rain and all the kids were arriving from buses and cars. We had to wait under an awning until the school bell rang and the doors were open. I was the kid wearing the short sleeved shirt and freezing my ass off. The other kids teased me and the adults around joined in with the "young lady where is your jacket" comments. Now that I am a mom I know the 100 reasons why an 11 year old would go out in freezing rain without a jacket...they lost it, you forgot to remind them, they were throwing a fit...of course as a parent you have quite a few jobs in the morning. Food, clothing and prompt arrival at school. Sometimes you fail.

But my parents were about as effective as rabid wolves at parenting. They dropped me off before there were adults at the school to supervise me and could have cared less if I were dressed appropriately. I didn't know at the time they lacked such skills...I just thought the other kids were simply smarter than me to have remembered their jackets. And I resolved to write myself notes of things to remember to bring to school.

But I didn't want to feel stupid. And I knew they were teasing me for being different. And my problem solving skills were...well...skewed. So I told my fellow classmates that I actually had a jacket on. They just couldn't see it. My jacket, I explained, was made of a team of amoeba who were single celled organisms that could absorb water. So I stayed dry and warm.

As you can imagine the kids REALLY took the teasing up a notch at that point - so to prove to them that I in fact wouldn't get wet I danced and played around in the pouring rain. I can remember almost believing I had amoeba friends watching out for me...but I sat in school the rest of the day soaking wet and miserable. I probably should have felt proud for at least knowing what the hell an amoeba was...but I didn't. I just wished I had a damn jacket.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

alright fine...

So even though I feel ridiculous even saying this - I purchased yet another self-help book. It's very cliche for a 40-something year old lezzie to sit around with her golden retriever and read self-help books on the weekend, isn't it? This one is called "Attached" and allegedly will teach me why oh why my deeply ingrained patterns are RUINING all the wonderful romantic relationships I try to maintain.

I heard the authors speak on NPR last week and they could have been talking directly to me. The neuroscience behind why I select mates, and the chemically ingrained maladaptive traits that spiral into sabotage.

Hopefully this isn't yet another touchy feely hard cover waste of my time...and the fact that none of the bookstores in town had it in stock could be a ominous sign.

Amazon just let me know that the book should arrive...just in time...for valentines day.

How fucking fitting.

I'll keep ya posted.

Monday, February 07, 2011


somedays I awaken after three hours sleep...
and gently get my groggy son ready for his day
and make small talk with his teachers
then race to a nice woman's house and clean for four hours straight
of course skip lunch and take my elderly mother to the doctor
pick up my hyper son from school
quickly hit the grocery store
assist my gloomy son in two weeks worth of busy work he missed while out with the flu
make dinner that includes veggies and fake pork ;)
wash the dishes
help my sleepy son research the super fun and yet easy for mom science fair project
feed the ravenous dog
put the amazing kid to bed

and then?
then it's me time ;)


Saturday, February 05, 2011


Home with a sick little man. It is heartbreaking to love someone so much and be powerless over their suffering! The flu sucks. His egg allergy prohibited him from receiving the vaccine...and my precious angel has had every last dang symptom that flu can throw at him.

He spends alot of time sleeping...which means I have cleaned my house. my closets, my car and my dog. I have baked elaborate sweet treats, savory dinners and yummy biscuits. Mr. Flu hasn't really had an appetite - so most likely I have gained 4 pounds ;)

He is finally turning a corner - and even a trip to Publix feels like Disney World. I can finally steal away for hours at a time with my convalescing sweetness safely under the watchful eye of the 'rents. Whatever shall I do?

Friday, February 04, 2011


Oh be careful what you wish for...we all know that. "Please let me learn how to be patient" translates into being stuck in the line at the bank for 45 minutes and "I wish I didn't have to go to work today" morphs into a car accident.

I get that.

But still I wish...

I think that wishing is a sign that I still have faith. I have faith that good things are possible - and I have at least a small hand in guiding goodness my way.

So I got this fancy pants wish bracelet years ago. I sat in my bedroom, all alone at night, surrounded by an amazing kid, a great job, and an abundance of friends. Sadly though, no partner. "Alrighty wish bracelet" I said, rolling up my sleeves. "Give me a girlfriend". And since I wanted to be clear I made sure to ask for the OPPOSITE of my awesomely disappointing ex. "Please let her be madly in love with me, head over heels. I want PASSION". And so POOF! The wish was set in motion. Months go by and I in fact begin dating. And true to my wishes she was seriously in love. I was showered with gifts, treated to romantic getaways, and never for one second doubted her feelings. I hadn't been specific enough in my wish, however, because this woman lived a million miles away and would never leave her family. And the relationship ended after a wonderful few years and a horrible many months.

Ever optimistic, I tried again. "Oh mighty wish bracelet! I was too careless in my wishing! How I would really love to have a girlfriend in the same city! And yes, wish bracelet, I know relationships are hard, but let me find a girl worth the fight!"

And with a silent but mighty POOF I tied it to my wrist.

Many months later comes the most amazing woman. Blissful time together zoom by and suddenly I am in the middle of struggles. She was absolutely worth the fight...but she did not agree that I was.



So I am thinking of my new wish...what should it be? Maybe just to be satisfied making dinner for an amazing little guy, having a good book on my lap, and great friends for fun times. Let's see how the wish fairy screws that up.

Thursday, February 03, 2011

no answers...

the tricky thing about life is not doing the right thing...but knowing the right thing to do. I could easily attest that most people do what they *feel* is right...or at least that is true with the people I surround myself with.

It used to be an amazing characteristic of my personality though. I was a rare person that knew the right thing to do. I was sure of my path, my heart and my choices. Somehow...age wore that certainty down to a little nub. A shiny little nub with not even a rough spot to grab hold of.

My life-long career fell away...and started the spiral of confusion.

Not that I think I'm in a bad's just that my course feels uncharted and precarious. Like I'm on a game show during the agonizing pause before the host reveals the contents of the box. The entire audience holds its breath to see if the contestant will walk away a millionaire, or walk off the stage filled with second thoughts. But that dramatic pause keeps going and going and going...

I can promise you that if I had a set of operating instructions I would follow them to the letter. So any ideas would be appreciated :)

How many failed job interviews do you go on before you redo your resume? And if the girl of your dreams doesn't say "yes" do you move on or stay? I no longer have any answers. And I find it impossible to believe that I know less in my 40's than I did in my 20's...(sigh)

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Our bodies...

A long, long time ago, when I had first returned to Tally town I decided to try online dating. Truthfully I could write an entire blog just about my failed experiences. But let's start with one of the first rounds of misery.

At this point in my life I had a four year old and I was a single lesbian living in the Deep South. For those of you who don't know...the Deep South is a very homophobic place filled. Finding dates was challenging. Also, in the back of my mind I was returning to the Southwest to live - once I had fulfilled my family obligations and figured out this whole parenting thing.

So gradually my fruitless searches of my zip code bored me - and I expanded it to include Albuquerque. After all, this was the home base of my job and I flew out there every 3 month. I had every intention of living there before my kid began kindergarten.

Lesbian online dating in ABQ offered many more choices and before too long I was emailing with another woman. She was single! And a mom! And even had used the same sperm bank! She was college educated! And a teacher! She had a great sense of style and we made each other laugh.

She decided to come visit. I was on top of the world. More details emerged that made it seem as if my luck were finally changing. She was heir to some crazy huge media conglomerate and had things like "assets" and "portfolios". But her real passion was teaching. Sure she had enough money to retire but she loved her students and loved her job at a local high school. A down to earth millionaire! WOW!

As you could imagine I was anticipating a fairy tale arrival. She and her son deplaned and I waited with balloons for the kid and take out from the fanciest place in town for her. Things were a whirlwind of activity. She with a two year old and me with a four year old. Finally the kids were asleep and we were alone.

We hadn't spent much time actually talking up to that point. Mostly email and online chats. And face to face the chemistry just wasn't there for me. She didn't laugh, didn't cry, didn't really seem to emote at all. I was wondering if maybe she was I didn't push it. But she ate with her mouth open and drank a bit too much and her stories, when unedited and "live" dragged on for so long I had forgotten the point half way through.

Oh god. My subconscious was telling me that I had made a huge mistake getting this stranger to fly across the country before I had really TALKED TO HER ON THE PHONE but it was too late now. She was in my house. And when the conversation would lull I was sure I heard a whistling in her nose that sounded just like Ava Maria. I yelled at my subconscious, "don't be so damn picky!". But the first night ended with an awkward hug and separate rooms.

As I laid in the dark trying to sleep I told myself the 100 reasons I should give her a chance. I told myself that she was a good mom, a good writer, and kind. Her clothes were super awesome and she was rich! "Don't mess this up you picky bitch". And I fell asleep. But, my subconscious rebelled.

In the days leading up to her arrival I had shaved my lady parts for the first time since childbirth. And that night one little hair follicle became the embodiment of my subconscious.

I awoke in pain. As if some evil leprechaun had planted a sand spur up where no leprechaun has a right to be.

Ever studly, I ate a handful advil and ignored it. I mean...what was I supposed to do?! "Hey could you hold this hot compress to my vagina for me???!"

The day of sightseeing almost killed me - and what little we had to talk about was a shock. How could this girl write 3 page letters of the most amazing prose and sit on the couch with nothing to say?! Night two ended poorly...with her attempt of a "move" resembling a goodbye kiss from a great aunt with too much to drink. She sensed my distance and tried to sneak into my bedroom telling me that she tended to "grow on people" and I shouldn't be worried if I didn't feel sparks....yet. And then either she winked or had some kind of tic. Can't be sure.


The next morning my sand spur had turned into a chinese throwing star. And with another 5 days of her visit facing me I knew I had no choice. So I told her. I then took myself straight to the doctor for a VERY UNPLEASANT experience that at least concluded with narcotics.

The rest of the trip was unremarkable. I was angry at my lady parts for taking the side of my sub-conscious and not letting me at least fill the conversational voids with kisses. As she boarded the plane I wondered if maybe she was right...and maybe had we messed around I would have connected with the part of her that intrigued me from her emails.

I'll never know - I wrote her before her plane even landed that I didn't think it would work but wished her the best and blah blah blah. I am sure there is a lesson in there somewhere...don't let a stranger fly across the country to see you? Online dating is useless? Or maybe just not to shave with an old dull razor. That's probably it :)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

and then...

When I first moved back to Tallahassee from the great Southwest I had this crazy phobia of a tree falling on my house. I think the decade of living in the high desert made the deep South feel a bit claustrophobic with all its live oaks and pines towering above me. And within the first year of moving back - not once - not twice - but THRICE did fifty year old trees crash into my yard. Each time was terrifying and led to a frantic call to my landlord begging him to send an arborist to root out any murderous evergreens lurking in my yard. Hurricane force winds pummeled through town regularly - and each creak or bump in the night sent me into panic.

Once, while working at my computer desk, I heard a deafening SLAM! It sounded like an enormous sword slashing into a shield! This was a bright and sunny day though, and when I looked outside I didn't see a fallen limb on the I climbed up on the roof and saw a small hole. The hole was about 5 inches wide and was directly above where I had been sitting. I peered into the hole and at first couldn't see anything. I wondered if a meteor had hit my house! I climbed down from the roof and entered the attic. Embedded in the support beams, inches from piercing the ceiling, was a 4 foot branch bigger in diameter than my thigh. It had snapped off from a tree and hurled itself like a javelin towards my head!

It was at that point that the tree fear turned into a phobia.

I was so scared.

The next horrible hurricane came through town a few weeks later. I sat awake fretful and trying my best to stop catastrophic scenarios from playing in my head. Even the vision of my sleeping 2 year old couldn't settle my mind. So I decided to pray.

I prayed to not let a tree fall on my house...or my car...or my head...or my kid's head. And then I thought maybe that was too much to ask. I mean, I hadn't prayed since I had been a kid and maybe you can't just start off praying for big stuff after such a long absence. So I thought it might be better to start off smaller...maybe a question.

"Hey you tell me if I die by a tree falling on me? I I wasting my time worrying about this? Or should I cut down all my trees?"

OK too much question. To the point.

"Hey God, will a tree ever fall on my house"

And in my head...I swear I heard a "No"

Wow! Had that just happened? Seriously? And my first thought? The very first thing that popped into my head??!?!

"Oh it's cancer isn't it? Is that what kills me? Car accident? Rabid raccoon? TELL MEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!"

Saturday, January 22, 2011

By now...

By now I really thought I would have things figured out.

I mean seriously folks, I am mature, seasoned, a parent, a scholar...I have driven across the country in search of passion and place...I have a passport with stamps from more than ten countries...I've performed for crowded concert halls (sometimes with a guitar and sometimes powerpoint) and even won a sailing trophy!

So then tell me...why during the coldest winter I can remember am I cuddled up next to a golden retriever rather than some wondrous woman? How can I accomplish so much in so many ways and be so lost in others?

I have learned that the older I get the less I understand about love...