Friday, November 30, 2007


By noon today I WAS SUPPOSED TO HAVE BEEN breathing easy after a frustrating week.

First there was the annual checkup. By the way, I almost went to that a day early. Wouldn't that have been fun? I would have looked pretty eager...

Yesterday my daughter stayed home sick from school. But I also had to go for my annual mammogram. Perhaps we'll talk about that another time.

Daughter is still home sick today, but I had to go to the grade school to do an ArtsPals presentation. I am involved in this group where we work with our Downtown Arts Council to present classic works of art to grade school students. I chose 3rd grade because my memories of 3rd graders are happy ones. The print was to be at the school waiting for me, and I was told "no I shouldn't pick it up early because somebody else may need it...." which didn't really make sense to me because each print was specifically chosen for each class and the schedules of each presenter were also carefully relayed to other presenters. It really went against my nature not to have the print at home for a few days so I could become very comfortable with my presentation.


The print wasn't at the school today.

I know!! Can you believe it? Those prints are NOT supposed to leave the school. I'm tellin'.

I was all ready with two activities for the kids to do that would familiarize them with the techniques the artist used. I had my note cards all ready to prompt discussion. I had traded e-mails with the teacher to schedule 30 minutes out of her busy teaching schedule.

And no painting.

So I told the teacher I could choose a different print and wing it, and there would be no activities, or re-schedule. We chose to re-schedule because the kids would really benefit more with corresponding activities. I was truly embarrassed and felt terrible for the mistake. I am still trying to get the bottom of the missing print.

So I left the school mumbling under my breath about "I thought I'd have this over with today and now I have to plan another day for this and what if I don't find the print for the TWO other presentations I already had scheduled for next week, and this wouldn't have happened if I'd been allowed to get the print two days ago so that I could be fully prepared and who would have the print anyway? Nobody else is supposed to present that piece. It is a THIRD GRADE print, for Pete's sake, and nobody else is scheduled to present it and so much for keeping each other informed on our schedules if somebody is going to take my print when I need it....grumble, grumble, grumble....

Then I drove to the mall because we are going to the company Christmas party tonight, and I "needed" some stuff to finish off my outfit. I needed some "diamond" earrings to go with my sparkly sweater. I found some very nice faux bling for around 10 dollars. I found some very nice black suede flats with a little shiny black leather on the toes, and finished with a bow. I really wanted the leopard print ones but they didn't have my size. Boy those were cute.

And I found a darling little party purse. It's red.

And that right there is the problem.

I just bought my fourth red purse.

I know. I have issues.

My first red purse was a gift from my daughter. She was about 8 when I showed her this purse I liked, so she got it for me for Christmas. A week before Christmas she said "Mommy I can't tell you what I got you, but it's red and it hangs from your shoulder." Tricky, wasn't she?

Then there is the more-maroon-than-red, red purse. It's a great size and shape and just an all around great purse. Can't remember where or when I got it, but I love it.

Then there is THE red purse. From Herod's. Of London. It is a darling purse and oh-so-chic. But it is too big for a holiday party.

Thus, the new red purse today. It is entirely too small for me to carry to anything but an office party, because I like BIG purses. But it is exactly what I had in mind and will be a great accent to my all black outfit. Well, all black except for the bling on my sweater and my ears.

So there you have it.

I've been a naughty, naughty girl.

Don't tell Santa.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


I'm going to give you gentlemen a chance to leave the blog because you won't be interested in this. Or if you are, you won't be able to relate. Or you might be embarrassed. So why don't you head on over to, or, or the sofa and put your feet up with the paper. Go on. Scoot. This is girl talk.

Any men left? Are they all gone?

Ok. Good.

Today was my annual checkup. Yeah. I know. We all love them. My doctor schedules them for 9:30 or 1:30 so that they are the first appointment of his morning; or the first one after lunch, so we ladies don't have to wait very long.

You know. For the fun to begin.

I think that's really nice of him, actually. This is a family doctor, so he is also seeing babies, elderly people, men, women. So he sets aside certain times of each week, just for women to have their annual exam.

I really didn't have to wait long. I had to wait for a couple of drug reps to get done with him. My apologies to drug reps, but this drives me crazy. I especially wasn't thrilled to step on the scale while the drug reps were lingering in the hall right beside it.

Then I had to wait for a sweet older lady to give the doctor a bucket of homemade Christmas treats. It's that time of year. He actually gave her a hug and kissed her cheek for it.

Other than that, not a bad wait.

I always go to my annual check-up with a list of questions. And my doctor knows this about me, and I think he appreciates that I come prepared. Some years the list has been quite long. Today, he looked at my little index card and said "That's it?" And I said "Yep, no legal pad this time..."

So we get through all my questions (only 6 this year) and while I'm getting ready to "assume the position" I ask him if the socks are still on the stirrups.

See, he used to keep these socks on the stirrups so they'd be warm for women who were barefoot. They were just white men's crew socks. I always thought they looked tacky, even though I commended him for his efforts.

Turns out the socks are gone because some drug company has made stirrup covers, advertising a drug of course. I think it was Boniva. These covers looked like those little mittens you put on newborn babies so they won't scratch themselves. Except they were bigger.

I looked at the nurse and said "Those are still not very pretty. He needs pink fuzzy socks. You know? Soft pastel things that women will enjoy."

And from somewhere at the end of the table, doctor B says "Ok. I have until next November to get pink fuzzy socks. But you better notice them if I do that for you."

So I said "Oh sure, Dr. B. whatever it takes to make this experience better for YOU."

And he started laughing so hard he had to scoot his stool away from the table to compose himself.

Yep. I bet he'll remember today's visit for a while.

Lucky me.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007


Magnetic Resonance Imaging (or Mom's Really Irrational)

Ever have one?

I had one yesterday. My second in 10 years. On my brain.

I've been having terrible dizziness and light headedness for about 6 weeks. The last time this started, my family doctor referred me to a great neurologist and she started me on some medication that helped tremendously. A few years ago, we started tapering off the dosage, and I did fine, but now the dizziness is back. I hope, pray, we can just increase the medicine again, but Dr. S wants me to undergo a few tests to rule out some things. I tried to explain what my self diagnosis was and that increasing my dosage was all that was needed; but she insisted on having it her way. Something about all those years in medical school and having so much intricate knowledge about how my brain works, blah, blah, blah, evidently makes her think she is right about this.


So the MRI. When they scheduled it, the nurse asked if I'd need a sedative to help me, in case I was claustrophobic. I said no but that I was dreading the noise more than anything. I know. Weird. The nurse seemed to think so too. But I am VERY sensitive to loud noises, due to my migraines, and that is what I could remember from my previous MRI. That machine is VERY loud. Plus, if they medicated me, I would be loopy for a while and I'd need somebody to go with me and I didn't think that was necessary.

So I arrive at the Imaging Center "15 minutes early to fill out some forms" only to find I was answering the same questions on the form that they had asked me over the phone on my "pre-screening call." Seriously. What's that about?

I changed into a gown and scrub pants. Let me just say - those scrubs are very comfortable. Are you allowed to wear those if you aren't in the medical field? Cause I totally am thinking of getting some. I mean if there's not a law or something.

So then I walk into the Imaging Room and look at the machine and all my confidence melts away. Not only does the memory of the noise start flooding back, but I see the table I will be lying on. It is about as wide as our piano bench. When you are having dizziness and balance issues, you do not want to be lying on a piano bench that will then be raised even further off the groud so they can scoot you into the tube.

Then the tech says I had to have something for my ears - "radio, television, or ear plugs." When I said "ear plugs, please," She said "REALLY?" I don't bother to explain that the noise of radio or television mixed with the EXTREME noise of the machine would be just the thing to send me into a migraine. So I put my ear plugs in and lie down. Then she brings the face cage down and I start sweating and thinking "I don't remember THIS; this isn't going to work...I cannot do this." Seriously it was like that thing they put on Hannibal Lector -is it Lector or Lecter? Hannibal the Cannibal - in those horrible Silence of the Lambs movies. Then she sticks these little pads up under the cage over my ears. I don't know if that was to further protect my ears from the noise of if it was to prevent me from moving my head. But I suddenly start feeling very helpless.
All this time I'm lying on the piano bench grasping the edges because my dizziness and panic have made me feel like I'm going to fall off.

Then she gives me this little squeezie thing and says "squeeze this if you need to come out. Of course if you sqeeze it; it will scare me to death."


I tell her "I don't mean to be any trouble, but I am just much more anxious about this than I thought I'd be." So she says to just try thinking of other things "Are you preparing Thanksgiving dinner at home?"


"Do you work?"


"Wow you do have an easy life."

Now that kind of ticks me off but I can't jump up and throttle her because I am restrained with the face mask thingee. But it did give me an idea for a blog post.

So in I scoot to the middle of the tube. Ironically I start to feel more comfortable in there because I do not have the sensation that I am going to fall off the table. Plus there was a little fan blowing all around in there and the cool air felt nice. Hot flashes and panic don't mix.

And then the noise.

Good Lord the noise. There were four basic noises: staticky radio on high volume, obnoxious buzzer, jackhammer, and what I called the cobbler's bench, because it made me think of the little wooden pounding board (cobbler's bench) my kids had when they were little. The noises came in patterns. For one portion there would be seven loud buzzes in my right ear, then seven poundings from the cobbler's bench in my left. Seven buzzes, seven pounds. That went on for awhile.

Then the static.

Then the buzzing.

Then the jackhammer.

Then the pounding.

Thirty minutes of that, then I was scotted out so they could inject me with some dye; then scooted me back in for another 15 minutes.



All the while I'm in there I try to keep my mind busy, first by singing praise songs in my head, then by thinking of my Christmas shopping list, then by composing blog posts. I spent some time trying to figure out how to scratch my chin without moving. Finally I decided to play some word games and went through the alphabet and came up with a noun, verb and adjective for each letter. I tried to think of obtuse words. I know. Weird again. But you spend forty five minutes restrained in a tube and see where your mind goes. Also, tell my what you do when your chin starts to itch.

After it was all over, she showed me some of the pictures, especially of my inner ear, where she had been instructed to get several shots. I tried really hard to see if there were any suspicious spots on the screen but... well... what do I know?

As I was leaving the parking lot, my husband called to ask how it went and to ask "So did they find a brain?"

Um...I forgot to ask.

Monday, November 19, 2007


But apparently my son isn't.

Each week or so, he has to write a paragraph for English. I do not see these paragraphs until I sit down at the computer to proof read them for him. I have been struck by his use of words, his apparent ease in putting his thoughts on paper. At 16, he is a man of few words much of the time. But apparently when asked to put words to paper, he just has a way.

This past weekend, he asked me once again to proof read his assignment. The assignment was to write about your greatest moment, and what you regret in life. I asked him, before he started, "Are you going to write about winning regionals in wrestling?" And he said, "No, because I don't think I've had my greatest moment yet."

Below, is what I found, untouched by adult hands, when I pulled his paper up on the computer. I simply read it and sat silently for a moment and said to the empty room "I am without words." This is reprinted with Blake's permission.

Still waters run deep.

Blake W_ _ _
English 2

Persuasive Paper


In my short life I have experienced many highs and many lows. Has there been a moment or situation in my life that I would change or undo? Have I ever been so close to rock bottom that I would change a moment in my life? On a lighter note; what is my greatest moment? When have I been at my best? When have I been at the top?
American chess player and a grandmaster, Robert Byrne once said “The purpose of life is a life of purpose”. If we as a society truly live lives of purpose then why change something that has a purpose? I would not want to change one thing in my past nor would I omit any event, situation, or even second of my 16 year long life. Just imagine if everyone on this planet walked around regretting past events in there lives. Our planet would be a very unhappy place.
Today, the current average of years a human being will live is 67. I am 16 years old. With my calculations I have exactly 51 years of life remaining on my timer. That is a prolonged amount of time remaining on my clock. But, what is the best moment of my first 16 years? When was I closest to the clouds? Truthfully, I don’t believe I’ve had my greatest moment. I certainly hope that is the case. If one was to have a greatest moment what is there to look forward to? Why continue to strive to be the greatest? What is the motivation to be the best if you have already done your best? I feel that a human being cannot have one great moment. There is simply no way to choose that one great moment.
Overall, No one should go about their life regretting or second guessing every other move they have made. Why torment yourself with those negative thoughts? Also, why choose one great moment that defines your life on earth? Shouldn’t all of us want to make each new day our best and forget about the problems of yesterday? I feel we should.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007


This morning while I fixed breakfast I was watching Fox News. Dog the Bounty Hunter was on it. My husband walked through and said "I can't believe THIS is what our news coverage is all about..."

Basically Dog the Bounty Hunter is in the news for using the N word. A despicable word, a word of hate. He used it several times in a phone conversation to his son; going into a rant about why his son should not date a Black woman "because we use the N word and I won't have our life's work destroyed by someone hearing that and turning it over to the National Enquirer." So his son taped the conversation and sold the tape to the National Enquirer.

Thanksgiving Dinner will be interesting at the Dog House.

There are many many things I would consider questionable about Dog the Bounty Hunter. And I admit I list these without knowing the man personally:

1. He obviously lacks common sense and common courtesy. He failed to jump to the obvious conclusion: STOP USING THE N WORD. Seems he had decided it would be easier to surround himself with other people who accept such vile language than it would be to clean up his act and enlighten himself.

2. He is self-centered. He had chosen to pressure his son to end a relationship that he perceived would impact negatively on his own career. Nice dad.

3. His name. Come on, folks. Where else would it be considered a positive thing to be called a dog?

4. His hair. I am nearly without words on this. Is it a mullet? Is it a mullet gone wrong? Is it a mullet...super sized? Is there NOBODY in his bounty hunter camp that loves him enough to pull him aside and say "Uhm... Dog? It's your hair. See....well...MAYBE if we tried a deep conditioning treatment? Perhaps take 2 inches off the back....or 10? Maybe we could get some publicity out of this and turn it into Locks of Love...? I'm just makin' suggestions, Man. You know, now that we're in a bit of a pickle with your image, maybe now's a good time to make a change toward the more clean cut look. Again, just a suggestion. I'm not lookin' for trouble."
You know, something like that. Maybe somebody could be lovingly honest with him about his hair.

So Dog has been deemed important enough to be on all the news casts for nearly a week.
I believe anybody can change and I will be hoping for that. And I am certain the news will be covering those changes.

I hope he starts on the inside and works his way out.

Monday, November 05, 2007


A recent cell phone conversation between my daughter and myself:

Me: Hi Sweetie, are you with S?

Daughter: Yeah, we're at the mall.

( I mean where else would they be?)

Me (with a little bit of dread): Are you spending your money?

Daughter: Yeah, we picked a name off the angel tree and pooled our money to buy a present for a six year old girl. We bought her some "My Little Pony Stuff." We already turned it in to the angel tree people. I also picked up a tag for a 3-year-old boy that I thought our family could do.

Me: *gulp*

I don't remember the rest of that conversation.

I was listening to the sounds of my bursting heart.