Saturday, February 23, 2013

HUDDLED MASSES


I believe all families have a set of weird and disturbing household rituals.  

Ours is the laundry.  We do 841 loads a week, approximately.  We have hampers for sorting the dirty and baskets for hauling the clean back to the bedrooms.  Sounds idyllic doesn't it?  Almost blissful...

 Yeah, it doesn't work that way, here's what happens:  all 841 loads, approximately, get folded into giant mounds, piled like plowed road snow. And there it will all sit, in the laundry room, for roughly the next 3 weeks.  Since we now have to trek across the house, past open window blinds, etc., to get anything to wear, we invariably dig around the bedroom closets and end up wearing clothes we thought we'd already thrown away.   Then those clothes pile up in and around the hamper until we finally make the trade.  Then the ritual starts over.

That's normal, right?

Monday, February 4, 2013

TUSSIN

Herbie recently came down with a particularly nasty case of croup.  The AMP went to the drugstore and came home with my childhood nightmare:  Robitussin.

The AMP had no idea what a Pandora's Box this opened for me...he came from a more humane country that did not inflict the Tussin on its' smallest, weakest members.  So when the pharmacist said that The Devil's Own Personal Cough Syrup wouldn't interfere with Herbie's other medication, it was a slam dunk.

Until he got home and his wife burst into tears and the mere thought of having to give her precious only child any of This Vile Satanic Torture.  NNNNNOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!

There are a few things I promised my baby while he was still in utero:  I would always make sure he had a cool haircut, I would not dress him in ugly boy clothes, I would love and accept him no matter which gender he loved, and I would never, ever, ever, give him Robitussin. 

Oh hell...

I am SO clinging to the other promises...

Sunday, December 16, 2012

CALLING RAMPART

Herbie has discovered a new love:  "Emergency!".  Yes, the TV show from the 70's.  He has been home sick lately, and he wants to watch Emergency over and over. 

Wow, what an experience for me!

It is an eye-opener to time travel to my childhood pop-culture.  So different than what we watch today.  Let's start with the trivial, shall we?  The hair!!  Non-hairstyle hairstyles, just shaggy and natural.  The bodies!  So many natural bodies...I've forgotten what it's like to see people who just look normal and average on TV.  The acting!  So, um, well, non-taxing.  Unless the leads, John Gage and Roy DeSoto (Randolph Mantooth and Kevin Tighe, respectively), are doing a water rescue, in which case the real actors get in real water that rushes in against a real coastline with real rocks and real tides and get their asses kicked!  No CGI, no stuntmen, no sets, just the real thing...amazing!  The writing!!  Oy vey, what writing?  The dialogue consists mainly of "take it easy" and "take it easy, man", "hey, man", "settle down", "you are going to be all right" et al.  And of course, "lactated ringers TKO" et al.   Except when the writing is being heavy-handed and preachy.  And the pacing!  It's like the actors are moving underwater.  How did Dixie (Julie London) get to be head nurse?  She seems to be in a coma most of the time.  And how the attitudes have changed!  With the exception of the Gage character, all these people are so snotty and brusque with other characters.  So very cranky all the time!  And let's talk about the characters...I have yet to see an episode where a Mom character isn't a total bitch who doesn't care about her kid.  There were some writers with Mommy issues!  And the rest of the women are either vacuous or bitchy.  Except for Dixie, the only woman treated with any respect by the writers. 

The last time I watched this show, I was a kid, with a completely different perspective than I have now.  As a kid, I thought Dr. Kelly Barrett (Robert Fuller) was hot stuff!  He was a man, not a boy, and he had great hair.  Now, I find Dr. Barrett, humorless, smug, and self-righteous.  He'd be a real pain in the ass to live with, so no, Dr. Barrett is no longer hot stuff.  Even though he's boyish, I find John Gage's optimism and humor more appealing.  I've hit an age where I know looks fade and personality means everything!

It's also interesting to see the societal subtext of the day...the black Doctor is subservient to Dr. Fuller and generally attends to black characters.  There are no women Doctors, there are no female firefighters/paramedics, Dixie has to get the doctors for everything, no autonomy for her. 

Watch Rescue Me or even Grey's Anatomy, then watch Emergency! and brace yourself! 

Sunday, November 25, 2012

WENT WITH THE WIND



This will not be a long post, primarily because it doesn't need to be.  Once I say the magic phrase, no more words will be needed.

So we recently had to put down our beloved old dog, The Hairy Carpet.  This was particularly wrenching because it was rather a surprise.  Because the Old Man was a big dog, we decided to have him cremated.  We'd spread some of the ashes in the forest and bury the rest in the backyard with our other pets. 

A week or so passed, the vet called and we picked up the urn.  The weather has been quite terrible, so we wanted to wait for a break in the weather to have our ceremonies.  Finally the day came and we went to the woods. 

As my husband is spreading the ashes, the wind picks up.  Guess where Herbie was.

Yes, The Big Lebowski.

Life really is a black comedy...

Saturday, November 3, 2012

THE TORRENT

Now that Herbie is in Kindergarten and I have some time here and there to spend with friends, one thing has become very clear:
I am no longer fit for humanity...
I have turned into an exuberant puppy that is so excited to see any human that they jump in the air and bark, while peeing a little.
I'm like a malfunctioning robot--HAL's benevolent idiot sister. 
I see another living being, and I don't intend to, but something happens and a torrent of words pour forth...it's like trying to have a conversation with a fire hose!  I answer the door the other day and before I can even comprehend what is happening, I am hemorrhaging words AT THE FEDEX DELIVERY WOMAN...and peeing just a little...
I used to speak in words, now I speak in terabytes...this onslaught of verbal  avalanche...
Don't get me wrong, I've always been a Chatty Cathy, just ask my teachers, but I was cogent!  Now, half the time the torrent sounds nonsensical, like a hyperactive Tourette's...
This is what 5 years of isolation has done?  I'm so thrilled to have an adult, any adult with which to interact that I knock them off their feet with my tidal wave?  Inside my head, my rational side says "for the love of God, will you please shut up!", but the rest of me isn't listening...Blort, blort, blort, the words keep coming...

Thursday, August 16, 2012

BAD BOYS, BAD BOYS


Herbie has a new favorite show:  Cops.

Yes, he caught it as we flipped through the channels one day, he begged me to record some episodes.  I told him it was too grownup for him but he BEGGED so I agreed but told him that he could only watch it with Mommy or Daddy so we could skip the parts he shouldn't see.  I thought we could turn the tamer parts of the show into "teachable moments".  Glass half-full, right? 

As it turned out, he really only likes the intros, the show itself bores him.  So, we are watching this intro...over and over and over, because that's my boy.  Everytime he see the intro he notices something different, finally he turns to me and says "look Mommy, the police are helping people move their houseplants".  Dear reader, you are not dumb, so I'm sure you know what kind of "houseplants" the police were helping to "move".  So I just turned to Herbie and said, "yes, honey, isn't that nice of them?"  

So much for teachable moments...

Friday, August 10, 2012

LAUGH TO KEEP FROM CRYING

It's never a dull moment around our house...

I was carrying Herbie the other day and tripped on something, we fell together and no matter how I tried to prevent it, Herbie still hit his head on a sidewalk.  I was going to race him to the ER right then, but I calmed down and watched him...he seemed relatively okay.  Then he slept for 14 hours and woke up vomiting, so off to the ER we went! 

We spent a large chunk of the day at the ER, with tests and exams, etc..  Finally, it seemed we were in the clear and he could eat, and boy was he hungry!  A friend came to keep us company in the ER, and we were chatting.  Herbie climbed onto my lap for a cuddle, I was starting to feel a bit more relaxed.  Then Herbie vomited everything he had ever eaten in his life onto me.  Relaxation time over!

Herbie was my priority so I stripped his clothes off and got him into a clean gown.  I, however, was another kettle of fish...I was literally soaked with vomit, top and bottom...my friend was trying to help me and so was a nurse...my friend says to the nurse "and it's her birthday!"  The nurse paused and then said "Happy Birthday".   I started laughing, then I laughed harder, then my laughing turned into more of an hysterical laugh and I couldn't stop!  Now people are starting to look at me like I'm losing it, which just made it funnier to me, which made the intensity and pitch of my laughter increase. Now the nurse was really getting worried, and I thought a psych call was in my future. So I beat it, still laughing as I walked to the nearest bathroom, stripped my clothes off, did my best to wash them in the sink with hand soap, twist dry them and put it all back on again.  Hey, wet clothes are better than vomit clothes!  (Although they still smelled.)

The upshot is, Herbie has a concussion...he's still not right, but he is better and he's keeping food down.  As for spending my 49th birthday covered in vomit, well, it could have been worse, and since it wasn't worse, I'm grateful! 

Now if I could just forgive myself for not being able to protect him better...

Sunday, August 5, 2012

LUCKY

If there is anything I have learned since becoming a parent, it is this:  I am being educated as much as I am educating.  And I love it.  Herbie is teaching me how to live and get past old habits, beliefs, responses, etc..  I've always said that this child saved my life, I also know that he has healing it too.  And am I ever grateful!  Yes, I have a special needs child and it is like having triplets, sometimes.  Yes, we have difficulties that other parents can't imagine.  So what.  Things could always be worse.  And, as I view it, my son has a special needs Mom, he just doesn't know it, yet.  The baggage I carry from my childhood and life until Herbie's birth is my personal handicap.  I've had people say  how lucky Herbie is to have me for a Mom...I say I'm lucky to have him for my boy. 

Friday, July 27, 2012

GIRL'S WORLD

I have a male model for a child, built to wear clothes well, with broad shoulders, a long torso, slim hips and long legs.  So I'm always on the lookout for clothes for him. 

If only I could find some...

Oh, sure, if I wanted to dress him like a cartoon character, or a circus clown, there's those clothes...cliched sports themes, TV show marketing, all other marketing, etc..  But normal, small person clothes?  Ha!!

No, those clothes are very hard to find, in part, because it's a Girl's World out there! 

I'll go into a shop and start looking...and looking...and looking...finally, when I'm about to ask if there is a separate store for their boy's clothes, I find the section.  It's in the hallway next to the bathroom and the fire exit.  There will be a broken rack, tilting from a missing caster, with 4 ratty pieces of clothing, covered in dust, advertising season 1 of Blues Clues.  You'll have to move the industrial metal mop bucket and mop out of the way to check the sizes...

I get it, the companies want to get the girls young and onto a debt-ridden life of princess behavior and compulsive shopping.  But, how are we going to create our next generation of metrosexuals if we don't start them young? 

I have heard from so many significant others/spouses/partners that one man or another doesn't dress worth a damn, has no fashion sense, always looks like hell, etc. etc.. 

Well, no wonder!!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

SHOW MOMMY HOW THE PIGGY EATS

So it turns out that I have given birth to Randy from the A Christmas Story movie...while Herbie does like to hide in cupboards, the way in which he is most Randy-ish is that he won't eat at the dinner table.  I even tried the "how does the piggy eat?" routine, to no effect.  How does the Lion eat, how does the Shark eat, nothing worked.  I know he was hungry, he just didn't want real food. 

Because Herbie has oral sensory issues, he likes to eat the same kind of food all the time, which in his case is crackers, pretzels, bread, pancakes...he's a carboholic...and not what I would consider real food.  I'm the Mom that swore, when pregnant, that my child would not eat junk...and here I am with a kid that only wants to eat foods that are predictable in his mouth...what I would call junk!

He ate everything until he turned 2.  I'm hoping this is a long phase and it will pass but just in case, I have that sneaky Mrs. Seinfeld cookbook that shows how to get vegies into everything...