Monday, November 29, 2010

The Funk.

I feel really weird, and I think it may be that I need a haircut. My boys are sleeping, so it's nice and quiet.
Thanksgiving was the bomb: the long weekend, seeing extended family, the gooey food, the turkey (dark meat all the way), going up in the mountains to cut our tree, bringing it home and having it's sappy smell fill my house, decorating it, decorating everything. We even got two Christmas shopping trips in. And then today, back in the normal swing of things, I feel tired.
The morning did not start off well. My alarm did not go off so instead I work up to Ethan asking if he could watch a movie forty five minutes after I should have been up. We got ready super quick and everything would have been fine only I put my keys in my underwear drawer (I NEVER have put my keys in my underwear drawer) and it took me twenty minutes to find them (I don't even know what I bothered to look in my underwear drawer. I think it was in a desperate, crazy, throw-open-every-cupboard-and-drawer-moment...maybe). Then out the door, planning on going eighty or eighty five the whole way, until I realized the freeway was backed up to California.
It's mornings like this where my lips are pursed and I try to do my yoga breathing so that I don't explode. It helped to look over at the lady in the silver car next to me and see that her lips were pursed and she looked about three seconds away from exploding too.
I feel all out of sorts lately. Like I said, maybe I just need a haircut. Or maybe it's more--I have had no desire to write, or have sex.
I know, I know! Right after that whole weekend sex frenzy post! And now I'm as cold as a dead fish. Oh the irony!
This has never happened in my entire life. Kinda like the car keys thing.
I'm kinda just moping around, waiting for it to pass....every once in a while I shake my head and my long hair trying to shake the funk out. It helps for about a minute and a half.
Maybe it's lack of exercise. With our big weekend I missed a couple of normal exercise times, and as I get older I realize more and more how closely linked working out is to my emotional well being. So I'll go work out tonight, see if that helps.
Maybe I need to get into a good book, go pick up some Anne Lamott.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Woke up to snow this morning and haven't decided if I am excited to have to shovel or not. It's Thanksgiving week, and I really love the holidays. I love shopping (but you already knew that), I love the parties, the family, the friends, the food. I even like the cold weather, the snow. Winter and I get along pretty well until about February or March, and then by April (when it should be getting warm but it doesn't) I really hate it.
I can't wait to go get our tree, to decorate it together and put the first few gifts under it. The plans aren't set in stone yet but we are also planning on taking the boys with Nawnie and Ampa to the train in Portola where they serve hot chocolate just like in the Polar Express. I've wanted to take Ethan to this for two years and always seem to miss it.
We also have some Christmas parties coming up, one for Joey's work at the Peppermill that's going to be an overnighter, complete with a massage from the spa. I'm just a little bit excited about that.
I usually do a Christmas card with a letter about our year and a picture, but haven't started this year's yet. I've done it for the last four or so years, and want to put together a book with the letters and the pictures so it will be a quick reference of our life. Might work on that today...
I've also been working on a photo album from Shutterfly and have about four pages left till I reach the max amount of pictures they'll let me use in a book. It's about three years worth of pictures.
I love chronicling our life. It's really neat to see Ethan grow and change, and now Noah too. Noah is just like Ethan (in looks) when he was Noah's age.
I've been really feeling domestic lately. Maybe it's the holidays. Anyway, it's fun. Maybe I'll go bake some bread or something.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


Dear Future I will not fear you. I will not fear the thought that I have royally messed up my first son, and will soon be putting the finishing touches of "royal mess up" on my second. I will not fear tomorrow, in thinking that I am too old to accomplish anything. I will not fear the thought of what you hold for my marriage, for my relationships, especially with my two sons. I will not fear drugs on the streets of middle school, of meth and nail polish and whatever else it is that they are injecting or sniffing these days. I will not fear my body, my bones as they ache, especially in the mornings. I will not fear them becoming old and brittle and excruciatingly painful.
I will not fear the red 40 in the fishy gummies I ate on Sunday because I was starving. I will not fear the ice cream, and the cheesecake I ate this weekend. Especially the cheesecake because it was in celebration of Jen's new baby. I will not fear the thought of inheriting all of my mom's bad habits. I will not fear the economy and the fact that we are so upside down in our house we are dizzy. I will not fear the idea of being stuck: physically in this house, emotionally in my relationship with myself and others, and spiritually with the God whom I grew up with.
I will not fear the thought of never moving on, of never reaching my potential. I will not fear the thought that Justin Beiber is like twelve.
I will not fear the rich ones, the ones that drive the nice cars and wear the flashy jeans. I will not fear my husband. I will not fear my four year old. I will not fear old age, the wrinkles that are bound to come no matter how much money I spend on moisturizer. I will not fear the loss of young, effortless beauty. I will not fear the grave, the dirt being shoveled on top of a box that will hold my remains while I am busy meeting my Maker. I will not fear that either.
I will not fear my parents, what they think of me. Or anyone else for that matter. I will not fear relationships and what it takes to maintain them, including conflict. I will not fear the desert, or the valley of death for that matter. I will not fear this afternoon, with lists of things I could do, I should do, and the overwhelming feeling of numbness that accompanies them.
I will not fear cancer, breast cancer, melanoma, and autoimmune diseases I hear about on House. I will not fear the sun.
I will not fear the gap, the emptiness of intimacy I sometimes (more than others) feel in my marriage. I will not fear it.
I will not fear making mistakes because I don't believe in terminal mistakes. Oopsies, yes. Learn and grow, yes. I will not fear mistakes as if they could ruin me.
I will not fear having more children and I will not fear not having more children.
Carpe diem!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

What to Expect.

I thought of some awesome things to write today in the shower, and now I can't think of a darned one. And oh, by the way, is "awesome" dumb now? Because remember when I went to get my tattoo, well, there were all these punked out guys who thought they were real cool, cuz they had like a zillion tattoos, and when I used awesome, as in "thanks for my tattoo, it's awesome" (hence, compliment), they snickered at me like I was some lame-o.
I hate fat boys with lots of tattoos.
Ohhh my gosh I just remembered some of things I was thinking about in the shower!
It started with the boys' toes. I cut those toenails, and fingernails, it seems like all the time, I mean, they must grow super fast when your young because I just finish with the last little pinkie nail on Little Lear Number 2 and low and behold Little Lear Number 1 needs a trim again. I am always trimming.
And that got me thinking of other things I didn't expect when I was, um, expecting.
I didn't expect to go crazy, for one.
I didn't expect to meet a side of myself that is so mean, impatient, and rude.
I didn't expect to stay skinny.
I didn't expect to be this tired.
I didn't expect to fight so much with my husband over how they look and act, how we should discipline.
I didn't expect them to cost so much.
I didn't expect them to dictate everything, from our city to our house to our cars to our jobs.
I didn't expect every morning to be the war in Iraq, screaming, whining, and all without coffee!!!
I didn't expect to never sleep again. I mean really sleep. I know I don't really sleep because at any point in the middle of the night, I am up like I was just lying there waiting for Ethan to come in or Noah to whimper. Like I am waiting for it. Midnight, two, or four thirty in the freaking morning, it doesn't matter. My eyes pop open like I heard a gunshot. Now, at six, for some reason, I feel like I can't open my eyes for anything, even if the whole house were on fire. At six, I think I'd let it burn.
I didn't expect to feel like there is no reprieve. Even on over night dates, which we take fairly regularly, it always feels so short. And the restfulness of it is easily taken over by the anxiety of the thought of picking up the buggers.
I didn't expect every car ride to be such a pain in the ass, getting both boys in the car seats with all their junk and snacks.
I didn't expect bedtime to be the war in Iraq either.
Now this list just makes me feel horrible, because my mother, the saint, never said a word about any of this.
And I love my boys. I love their soft doughy cheeks and the way they smell like yogurt and graham crackers and all the sweet love they give me. But I was expecting that.
I didn't expect them to look so much like me. It can be painful, and at the same time so awesome, to see my face in his. I didn't expect them to get to smart so quick. Sometimes I feel like I am dealing with a teenager, or a cut throat lawyer, not a four year old. I didn't expect them to be so unpredictable, so unique, so uncontrollable. I didn't expect them to make so much noise. It doesn't matter, the dinner table, the car, bath time, anytime they are not sleeping you can pretty much bet they are making noise. A lot of noise. I didn't expect quietness to become such a cherished rarity, like something uber precious, like dark chocolate covered almonds and an expensive bottle of Shiraz. I didn't expect to like the way they smelled so much, like cream cheese frosting and syrup and (when clean) Aveeno baby shampoo.
I did not expect it to be so hard and complicated, so immensely dragging (especially in the mornings and evenings) and then at the same time they are life. They are my life. I would die a thousand deaths if they died. They are irritation and frustration and anger right next to a love so big it busts your heart, if only because you are trying so dang hard to be a good mom.
Which is what you expected to be. Funny how expectations never quite pan out the way we expect them to.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Rated PG-13.

The boys are all napping. Life is just going along, totally normal and fine, which is fine with me. I'm not depressed. I'm just regular, and that is fabulous.
I am thankful for the weekends with Joey. I am thankful for sex. Who'da thought in seven years it'd be just as crazy but a whole lot better and more intense than it was at the beginning? We basically have sex all weekend long. It makes up for the three and four days he works and we don't see each other. We're hungry for each other and in the crazy life of a young family, sex is the ultimate reprieve. Renewing, refreshing, connecting, when nothing else does.
I've always enjoyed sex. It's a role reversal from the stereotype of "hubby wants it all the time". Not in my house. In my house, "mama wants it all the time." And after seven years, I've beginning to come to peace with that, with me. So I like sex? Sometimes more than my husband? Good for me.
I feel sometimes like it is a special little gift God gave me, that I like it. To me, there is nothing on God's green earth better than sex. This is a testament not only to the rock star skills of my hubby in bed, but also to the unique way God put me together. And honestly, I think more women are like me, we just don't get heard very often in a culture who accepts the notion that men want it and women hate it. Especially, a-hem, the christian culture.
It used to irk me, and I guess it still does, that any christian book on sex, if mentioned at all, will have about a paragraph worth of "now there is the very rare case where a wife will want sex more than her husband..." and then some lame advice to get undressed super slow and that should fix it.
Not so much.
We're over the hump now, but there was a period of time that I could have used some serious help in how to deal with the pain of what I saw as rejection to the deepest part of me. Why didn't he want me? I must be unwantable. Ugly. I must smell. As sexy as a piece of old broccoli.
And then I grew up a little bit and learned to ask for things that I want, learned to talk to Joey without assuming he was thinking I was ugly and stunk, and things slowly got better. We are just two human beings who want different things at different times, but we loved each other. And somehow, the kinks got worked out, like sifting flour: eventually after a lot of shaking, the lumps got sorted out, the impurities were separated from the good stuff.
And boy, is the good stuff good!
I learned to trust myself. I learned I am a complete person, whether Joey wanted me sexually or not. I learned my beauty did not depend on Joey's need for sex, or his lack of need. I learned to ask for what I wanted without hesitation or reservation. Just ask.
And then when the answer is no, I've learned it is not "no" to me, it's "no" to sex. And then I can still curl up close and drift off to sleep assured my husband loves me, he's just tired, sick, mad, or stressed about something. His problems, not mine. And because I love him, I don't want to stress him more, make him more tired. So we'll just sleep.
Unless I really really really want it and then I say so. Because that is what relationship is: back and forth, someone giving something, someone receiving. It's the balance of giving and serving while at the same time not letting your own needs get pushed under the bus. In other words, being a grown up.
Now how did I manage to write a whole post on sex? Oh yes, naps...just talking about sleep, sometimes that's all it takes.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Most Perfect Day.

Sunny with a high of 76! These fall days are so beautiful. Everything is kinda muted: the trees, the sky. It's gorgeous.
We are going to walk around the marina today, and then I have laundry coming out of my ears. I can't believe it's already Thursday.
I had the most awesome day two days ago.
I decided to clean my car which hadn't been cleaned since about 1992. I did the whole deal--vacuumed, wiped, Windexed the windows inside and out. Then I decided to take the boys for their haircuts, to be on top of things and to make my husband love me a little more.
Ethan did great, sat up nice and tall and every once in a while would turn toward me in his chair and give me the thumbs up sign. I have to hold Noah during his haircuts because he thinks the buzzer is actually a be-header. He screams like he's being branded, or worse, circumcised. So I get to get his soft, thin hair all over me, despite the cover, and he gets to get it all over himself because he's squirming so much his cover is all waded up in a ball under his left arm.
We finally get all that over with and he leaves with a Tootsie pop that looks way to big for him. He's really happy though.
I get the boys back in the car and we drive home to get Fiebi, who is like six months late on her booster. Again, I had a free afternoon, so I decided to take her in, to make my husband love me a little more.
I grab the dog and throw her in the car and we are off. We get to the vet and when I open Noah's door I realize the sucker was a quick fix for the moment, but in the long run was a very bad idea. He is covered in a pink sticky film. His entire face. His newly shaved head. He can't open his fingers. On top of the stickyness, his fine, soft hair is everywhere. He looks like a balding lion.
And an extremely neglected child.
Oh my goodness...
Fiebi is desperately trying to jump out of the car as I try to figure out how I am going to clean this kid up.
Ethan keeps saying, "Noah is a mess!! That is not a good boy! He is a mess!" We are late. I finally find some water and start yanking out tissues and getting them wet, watching them almost dissinigrate in my hand. It takes almost an entire box to get him somewhat clean.
And let me just point out in all this "being on top of it" I forgot the diaper bag. Or, more correctly, I just didn't think I'd need it. Two qucik errands. Well, now I know baby wipes would have been really nice.
So I take the dog and kids in, Noah on one hip, Fiebi on the other, my purse in between them somewhere, trying to make sure Ethan doesn't get hit by a car.
All the receptionist ladies raise their eyebrows as I try to get the door open to get in. One of them finally does the kind thing and gets off her ass and opens the door for me.
Noah won't let me put him down, which was the plan. Fiebi is terrified, but at least she is still. Ethan begins telling the receptionists how old he is and when his birthday is and everything he is expecting from Santa Clause.
We finally go back, and when the doctor comes in, he takes one look at me and my sticky children and says, "Are you OK?"
Oh yes, yes, I am fine. I thought he was just being polite, but then he says, "Are you sure?" and I kinda wanted to curl up and weep in his arms.
He tells me Fiebi is fine, just really scared, and I just smiled and said great. I was dying to get out of there. Noah let me put him down for three seconds so I could get in my purse to pay, and I just prayed some huge beast dog didn't come out from down the dark hallway and gobble him up.
This time I push the door open with my rear and we head over to the car. I am so realived to be getting in the car, the kids constrained in the their carseats. I sigh a big sigh of relief.
I turn the key in the ignition and see Fiebi's body start to curl up like a cat stretching and then she does that gross hair ball thing with her mouth and then it all comes out, redish brown barf in long tubes like she's yarfing up her own intestines. It gets on my dress, the seat, inbetween the gear shift, and the floor.
I do my best to clean it up with my last three kleenex.
We finally get home and I pick Fiebi up and throw her in the house. I come back out to get the boys and Ethan says, "She pooped!"
"Noah pooped?" It couldn't have been Fiebie. It just couldn't. It had to be Noah, where the poo is contained in a diaper.
All over the seat. Down between the back and everything. I mean, really, it was a perfect ending to a perfect afternoon.