Tuesday, June 30, 2009

I can't seem to figure it out.

That last post is still giving me heartburn. I'm still rolling it around, still trying to find the peg in my brain it will fit into so it will just sit still already, damnit, but I need to get it off the top of my blog. I can't come here to make sure the figurative roof hasn't caved in between posts, and see it there. Looking at me. Looking at anyone else who comes here.

Problem is, on account of still not having found a way to quiet the voice of that last one, I don't really know what else to talk about, so... This is awkward. I kind of feel like I should address some of the things I said in that last one but at the same time, no. Just... no. I don't really know how to talk about any of it, and I don't want to give the wrong impression... So there's this grunting murmur in the back of my head, growling at me to just leave it alone already, it's tired and old and can't you see I'm resting now go AWAY. Yet I still feel the need to poke, and so let me just clarify, just quickly, just for a second:

I don't want to forget the baby I lost. I don't want to, and I know I won't ever. Sometimes I just wish I could. I know that makes me a bad person or a shitty woman, or any number of terrible things I'd never chose to be, but I didn't choose any of this so I've kind of grown used to the idea of things not fitting just so in my life. I suppose I can deal with people thinking I'm terrible for occasionally wishing I had the ability to forget, because forgetting is the only thing that would make it possible for me to be normal.

People who have normal have everything I want, but they don't have a clue how lucky they are and so I guess I don't want any of it at all. I'd rather know I'm lucky than be trapped in the dark, however soothing...

And that's all, I promise, that I have to say about that. For now, anyway... I mean, I can't say for sure about the future and whether or not I'll feel the need to vomit this particular demon back up in a while. But not now, not anymore, I promise.

Let's move on, shall we? I don't know what to move toward, however, so this will serve as a place holder for a couple of days until I figure it out... I'm really trying to figure it out. I am. If anyone has any ideas on what I could blather about here, I'm totally open to suggestions. In fact, that would be kind of great.

I'll see you on the flip side.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

I'm so sorry.

Man, I fucking hate this sometimes.

I mean, generally I love this. This being pregnant and the miracle of life and everything associated with it. But damn it, sometimes I hate it, and I can't SAY so because saying so will kill my baby. Seriously. That's what I feel like. I feel like if for one second I'm not the picture of gratitude and motherly humility that the baby will die because I don't deserve her.

That's part of what I hate... I hate feeling like I'm walking on egg shells, like everything I do or don't do, everything I THINK is going to have some sort of superstitious repercussion and something bad is going to happen. Because I wasn't grateful enough, I didn't want it enough.

And ya know, on the subject of wanting it enough, let me tell you: After losing a baby at 14-15 weeks and then passing a perfect half of her incredibly tiny SKULL -and everything inside it, dear God- into the toilet 3 days later because the doctors did a fucking D&C (Dilate cervix, knock out mother, go in vaginally and literally hack the baby to pieces, then suck it out. Seriously. That's what they did. At 15 fucking weeks. Living in a small town and having only a rural Catholic hospital with out-dated surgical procedures can suck.) and didn't GET EVERYTHING, I don't know that there's anyone in the world that WANTS IT MORE. Because really... Do you want to picture that for a second? Seeing something like that in the toilet? Because I don't and I CAN'T STOP, so excuse me if there's a little bit of post traumatic stress going on here and every time I go to the bathroom I'm waiting for the blood. Every single time.

Which is, like I was saying, part of the reason I HATE this sometimes. I can't just be happy, there has to be this underlying sense of fear and danger and oh no what if... I can't STAND IT. I can't STAND that this tragedy, this enormous fucking thing that crashed down on my life 4 years ago robbed me of the ability to just be grateful, and instead I'm left with this constant nagging terror.

I hate that I feel like I'm over reacting to everything. I hate that when I can't feel the baby move and kick like people say I should be able to, I assume she's dead. I hate that when I think I CAN feel something I second guess it, so it seems like I never feel her move at all. I hate that I don't feel like I'm showing as much as I'm supposed to, that every week I google pictures of women as far along as I am and compare, becoming terrified until I can find a stomach that looks like mine and feel more normal.

I hate that people don't ask about how it's going or what's happening with the pregnancy, when I really do want to tell them but I don't want to intrude. I hate that they don't ask because this has all gone so badly before, and they don't want to get too invested, just in case, because they know what it did to me last time and they're afraid if they encourage me it'll be all the worse when it all goes so terribly wrong... I hate that The Boy is one of those people -- that he has concerns and worries and things he can't talk to me about because he doesn't want to crank my nervousness up any more than it is. I hate that because he doesn't ask, it feels like he doesn't care, and that makes me even more nervous. I hate that I don't have anyone to talk to...

Sometimes, I just hate it. And I'm sorry. I'm so sorry I hate it, I'm so sorry that I FEEL this way... Most of the time, 98 per cent of the time, I love it so much that I ache with it... It's just that other tiny 2 per cent, that tiny little bit of time that the fear and the paranoia and the uncertainty overwhelm and I feel like I'm left standing in the middle of the field where my LIFE used to be, with everything blown to hell. Worse, I feel like I'm the one destroying it because I can't just be like everyone else, I can't just be happy, I can't just suck it up and do what other people do and what the hell is wrong with me?

Why can't I move on, why can't I just forget about that other baby, the one that died? Why do I have to spend so much of every day talking to myself out loud, just so I can hear a human voice say, "It's going to be okay. You don't need to worry. It's all going to be okay this time." I feel so pathetic sometimes, and I just fucking hate it... like right now, I just hate this. I hate feeling like this, and I'm so sorry because I really do want this baby more than anything, and I am so grateful, I swear I am...

Saturday, June 27, 2009

...They shoot cuz they wanna.*

Things that have happened within the last 72 hours:

  • WE GOT THE HOUSE. The roofers came back with an estimate that was half what we expected it to be, as the damage was not as bad as we originally feared, and the home owners decided to pay for the repairs. (As opposed to fighting us on it, refusing our offer, and attempting to screw less savy home buyers.) Our move-in date is the 24th of next month. Um. Does anyone want to help me pack? Otherwise, I might just count it as a loss and burn all of my crap in the alley out back, because that sounds very celebratory and festive for the 4th. Independance from my stinky, over-priced apartment, huzzah!
  • My dog sucked $130 dollars out of my wallet. Actually, more accurately, her bottom parts turned into a pale brown fire hose of terror and distruction, prompting me to take her to the vet and pay them $130 to tell me she has Irritable Bowel Syndrome. She went over night from being healthy and happy to needing special food and gut-bacteria powder sprinked on said special food to stay alive. Which I'm going for because, gah, I love her. If she suffers or the medication doesn't take, however, we'll be writing a different story.
  • I ordered a bunch of maternity stuff online, then promptly forgot about it because ME + SHOPPING = FAIL. I don't like to do it, and I don't care about it, so I space it out as soon as it's done. Today, I found a package outside my door full of what I'd ordered, one item being a green and white baby blanket. And lo, it is soft and was like a surprise present because I'd forgotten all about it. Sometimes I love being absent minded.
  • I locked myself out of my apartment this morning, leaving my car/house keys on the couch. My spare house key was in my (locked) car, and my spare car key was in my (locked) house. Is there anything else in the world that can make a person feel so incredibly stupid? If so, I haven't found it. I HATE being absent minded.
  • I got a phone call from a girl I was friends with at the beginning of High School. (I may be young, but trust: That was many, many, many moons ago.) By graduation we had grown apart (...because she fucked my best friend and then complained to me that he was awkward and ignored her afterward, which... Uh... Sorry, maybe don't fuck ambivilant stoners because you're trying to test how attractive the 'No really, I'm bisexual, don't you think that's hot, doesn't it make you like me?' line actually is? My less than sympathetic reaction disappointed her, which made me care less, which further inflamed the situation,) and I've only spoken to her while drunk on whiskey maybe 8 times since then. Anyway, she called and I didn't answer because, as you might have gathered, we have very little to talk about. She left no voicemail, but instead sent me a text message berating me for not answering the phone, when if I didn't want to talk to her the least I could do was tell her to fuck off.
  • I told her to fuck off. I told her that the least I could do if I didn't want to talk to her was NOT TALK TO HER, and that one of us needed to chill right the hell out, put the phone down, take a deep breath, and realize that high school was a LONG time ago so we should all have our big girl panties on by this point. It was satisfying in the way the defiant, pubescent slam of a door can be. I have no patience for passive aggressive strangeness, and who calls someone that's basically a complete stranger and then gets indignant when they don't answer? People that deserve to be told to fuck off, that's who. I do feel a little bad about it now, though, which I kind of hate.
  • I'm about 99% sure this baby is a girl. So much so that if at our next appointment it's found that there is a penis somewhere in my abdomen, I just may faint from the shock. To avoid any injury from my passing out during a very Southern and lady like case of the vapors, I think I might wear one of those inflatable floaty duck rings that you see in cartoons when characters go to the beach, so as to be cushioned from all sides when I hit the deck. They make those things, right? Because if not, I'm boned.
  • Told my land lord about Creepy McGangster and his Roving Pack of Pervert Homies next door, and he said he'd get on that shit like a fat kid on a cupcake. He said they've been told once to congregate somewhere else, and he'd make sure I wasn't bothered by them anymore, which is awesome except that now I feel like a jerk for moving out. He's never been a particularly kind man up until now, and he doesn't know I'm moving yet. I might want to mention that um.. tomorrow... or soon-ish. Maybe Monday? Definitely. Definitely Monday. ("82, 82, 82 toothpicks. 246 total, 4 left in the box." I hear that in my head every time I hear/say/see the word 'definitely.' Anyone else? No? Just me then? Eh.)

(*A line from the song Bullets, I think. Get it. Because there I used bull-oh never mind.)

Saturday, June 20, 2009

I try.

I try to remember her face, how impossibly soft and cool the skin of her cheek always was… Her eyes. Did they look like mine? What color were they? Her hair, short and curly and wild, springing off in every direction with absolutely no direction. I try to remember the way she felt, the way she made me feel.

I try but can’t recall her voice anymore, not really. When I listen hard enough there is an echo from deep, deep down inside of me that is not the sound but the feeling of her words. I can’t remember. For the longest time I could summon the sound of her saying certain things; “Be careful,” “Dream of angels,” “Love you, baby.” Now all that’s left is an ache. No sound anymore- instead her voice is replaced with an imitation sounded out in my own, a murmur that rolls around inside my brain trying to convince me that it’s really her. It’s never really her.

I try not to picture her when sick and drawn, her always-flushed skin turned the palest shade of pain. I think I’ve mostly blocked that out, mostly managed to force myself into forgetting those months where she just became smaller, smaller, smaller until we could count the ribs jutting from the skin beneath her shirt with only a glance from across the room… Mostly, but not entirely, I’ve forgotten how her voice went from a strong, deep, resonating thing to a soft, fragile ghost of her words. The terror of these details hangs on somewhere inside, waiting for an unguarded moment to slide back into the rotation of reasons for tears in the night. But mostly, I’ve tried to forget…

I try, instead, to remember her standing in the kitchen with one dwarf-like foot on top of the other, a hip braced against the counter, arms uncrossing occasionally to gesture grandly as she spoke. I try to see her from the passenger seat of her truck, her face always framed by the fields blurring past in the window on her other side. I try to remember the smells of stale coffee, menthol cigarettes, lilacs, orange slice candies. I try to remember the way she’d insist on hugs- big, full bodied hugs, and how when her arms were around us she would dance, sometimes singing a song about a big, blue frog. I try to remember…

I try not to think about the fact that this baby won’t know her. I try not to remember the baby I was pregnant with while we were losing her, the one that bled away after she died. I try not to think about the milestones, holidays, occasions, every-days that we will never have with her. I try not to miss her so much that it fills me, branching out like breaking glass from the farthest, deepest parts of myself.

I try to do what other people do. Move on, shoulder through, mold myself into a walking, talking, coping cliché.

I try so hard
, and it only gets harder. When we lost her people drifted closer, farther, stroking arms and backs and hair and whispering the things they thought we needed to hear… It will get easier, the pain will fade, you’ll move on. They made themselves into liars without realizing what they were doing, only trying to sooth their own loss and our own and losing the credibility entitled by love in the process.

Still, I try. WE try. We go forward because we must, learning to move through the world in a different way, a way that is less full than it seemed Before. We make new lives, new memories, hold on to new hopes, only now our grip has been made weaker by the knowledge that hope cannot always carry us through. Hope, sometimes, is cruel. Luckily, however, life is beautiful and occasionally kind, and there are always new chances. And so we try. We breathe. We live.

Friday, June 19, 2009

I'm No Miracle Worker.

Today is the 4-year anniversary of my mother's death. It doesn't seem possible, and cannot put it to words, and it has my heart breaking inside my chest. So instead, I will share a story that had me crying tears of laughter. Because sometimes, you just have to laugh at yourself. Especially if yourself is me, and I'm a giant tool.

The other day The Boy and I were at the grocery store, and he picked up this basket. He was looking at it like he didn't know what it was- like he'd never seen a basket before.

I, being overwhelmingly clever, grabbed his hand and wiped it down the side of the basket really hard while saying, "BA-SKET. BASKET. BA-SKET!" Then I pretended to sign B-A-S-K-E-T into his hand, while saying "BAAAH-SKET."

...And he had NO. FUCKING. CLUE what I was doing. I could have died. DIED. If you've never seen Miracle Worker, it looked like I was having a goddamned stroke. Apparently, The Boy is the one person on the face of the earth that hasn't seen that movie or read anything, ever, about Hellen Keller, because he was watching me with this sort of cautious, really amused, but also super cautious smirk. So I said, "You know, like Hellen Keller?" and he goes, "Who?" and I was like, "FUCK."Because I just humiliated myself in public again.

Then I told him this really lame Cliff Notes version of the movie that basically went like, "You know the movie from way-back with the lady in sunglasses, at least I think she was in sunglasses, that came, and then the girl was deaf and mute or wait, wasn't she blind? Yeah, maybe she was blind and deaf, but I don't think she could speak, either, so I don't know what that was about. But they were at the pump at the end and the teacher lady put Hellen Keller's hand in the water and she was like WAAA! WAAAAAH! WAAAH-TERRR! And suddenly, tada! She understood language?"

Turns out, that wasn't a helpful explination. Nor did it make me look LESS like I was going full-on retard in the grocery store. I know this because we had drawn a crowd, probably due to all of my waaaah-ing... So.

I think the moral of this story is that I have no clue how to explain movies and should never try to be clever again. Ever.

...Miss you, Mama. So much.

Stories of Somethings, pt1

A few of my favorite bloggers have been writing about their haunted house experiences lately. I'm kind of late catching the boat, but I thought I'd throw my hat in the ring anyway. There are a lot of stories and I don't know yet how many I'm going to be telling, but I figured I'd split them up for ease of reading anyhow. As if anything I write is easy to read.

The women in my family seem to be sensitive to things. I've heard stories about my great grandmother (who is rumored to have killed her husband, my great grand father, and gotten rid of his body in the furnace...) being incredibly spooky and strange about things no one could see. She was a strange woman, one I cannot talk about without feeling like her eyes are boring into the back of my head. I feel like one of the hobbits when that big flaming eye would turn and stare at them; like where ever she is, she can hear me and she's not happy about it. This feeling is shared by whomever might hear me talking about her - I've been asked to stop mid-conversation by many friends, asked to change the subject immediately, as everyone felt strangely about it. I never met the woman, and can't say I'm unhappy about it.

My grand mother, her daughter, would often have long one-sided conversations with her mother for decades after she died. She would sit in a darkened room, in the antique rocking chair her mother had left to her, and talk for hours. Only... there were pauses in there, as if she were hearing a response. Her inflection and the rhythm of her speech gave one the impression there was someone else speaking, someone no one could hear.

My mother believed she heard the voice of God when she was very young (although, given her strict Catholic upbringing and totally seperate later dealings with paranoid schizophrenia, we may decide for ourselves as to why, if we feel the need to have an answer) and had conversations with her dead father for 30 years until she, herself, died. She was absolutely terrified of tarot cards, Ouija boards, etc, insisting that "they open a door, they let things in, things you can't ever shut out again." She was raised devout Catholic, went to Catholic school every day of her education career, and believed in nothing so much as the wrath of God. This all directly conflicted with the fact that occasionally, she knew things she couldn't have known and could never say how she knew them. She just knew.

My sister and I have seen and heard things that we cannot explain, and this has gone on as far back as either of us can remember. When we are together it seems to happen more often and with greater intensity. When my mother was alive and we all lived under the same roof, there were times that things in that house desinigrated into an absolute shit storm of unexplainable activity.

...My first memory of dealing with Something (as I don't know what else to call it) was when I was approximately 6 years old. I was riding in the car with my sister and my mother, and was chattering about a dream I'd had the night before.

During this period in my life, my sister and I lived with our father in an apartment that was terrifying to us then and remains so to us now. In that apartment every dream I had was horrific, with the exception of this one, which is why I was so excited to tell my mom about it. I thought I was a big girl, moving past what she called 'silly nightmares.'

I told my mother I'd had a dream that I was a grown up, and I was standing behind a woman in an old rocking chair, brushing her hair. The woman had very dark skin that was very wrinkled, and I only knew that because I could see our reflection in a mirror that was in front of us. The mirror was on top of a dresser, and on the dresser was a silver hand mirror that matched the silver brush I was using on her hair. The woman smiled at me like she knew me. Neither of us spoke a word, and there was no sound to the dream at all.

My mother almost swerved off the road. She pulled into a grocery store parking lot, turned in her seat and started firing questions. What did the room look like? There were white walls, a wooden floor, big windows. Was there anything else there? Yes. There was a tall stick leaning against the corner; it was two colors, getting darker half way down. How long was her hair, was it straight or curly? To her waist at least, and it was straight as a pin. What was she wearing? All black- long, black sleeves, and a black skirt that covered her feet.

Here, my mother started crying. She mumbled "What does she want?" and pulled back onto the road. When we got to her apartment, she immediately called her sister and told her about the dream.

Later that night, she told me about my great grandmother. I had described the woman perfectly, described her possessions (which I had never seen, as they were locked away somewhere- except the chair that my grandmother would have her own strange experiences in, which I had also not seen) to a T. Even the stick she used to stir laundry and chase and beat the children with was in my dream. My mom apologized for crying earlier, but said my great grandmother was a vile, angry, mean woman, and that she had always scared the living hell out of my aunts and uncles. My mother called her a witch, said she knew things she shouldn't have known.

Then she dropped the subject abruptly and never brought it up again. I've never forgotten it, and can still see every detail of the dream when I think back on it. It frightened my mother very badly, and she seemed to believe that my great grandmother was reaching out from wherever she'd landed herself after death and waving a big, fat "Hello!"

This was the only experience with Something that involved a dream and someone I didn't know. I don't know if it qualifies as a ghost story, but it is a STRANGE story to me and my family none the less.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


So, the house we're in the process of closing on... We had the inspection yesterday, and would you believe it took five (5!) hours to inspect our sweet little home-to-be? No, me either. I wouldn't believe that an inspection that was supposed to take 2 hours instead took that long.

You know what else I wouldn't believe? That the entire roof is shot. Oh, yes. SHOT-shot. Like, if you were to walk on it, you'd fall through and cripple yourself, thus leaving your family to limp along on one income while you spent the rest of your life eating through a straw and rolling the dice when it came to bed sores and diaper rash. That kind of shot. Or the kind of shot where it could collapse in and crush you all in your sleep one night because the wind picked up just a titch. We're talking TOTALLY SHOT.

Riddle me this: How in the hell can someone, in good conscience, put a house up for sale that is topped by a roof that is about to collapse?

And man, let me tell you, it doesn't LOOK about to collapse. It's beautiful, especially when seen through the dewy eyes of someone that really, really would like to live beneath it. It's a pretty, normal little roof on top of the pretty, normal little house that we've already gone and picked out paint colors and furniture and even outside plants for. Because we're stupid and like to tempt fate, that's why. We started acting like the deal was final before it was, and now I want to shake my finger in the owner's face and tell them things like HOW DARE YOU and SHAME ON YOU and DON'T YOU KNOW WE'RE NICE PEOPLE? And also maybe add in a SHIT and PISS for good measure, because fuuuuuck. (Is it possible to whine through the Internets? I'm really giving it my best here.)

Dude. We're nice people. We do nice things. We're involved in charity and we love our big, messed up families so much, and we're just trying to carve out a little corner of the world for ourselves and our baby, and these LIARS are trying to sell a house with a bunk roof. A house we love. A house we can see our child learning to walk in. A house we want to build a life in and CAN'T now because do you know how much a new roof costs?

Between 7 and 25 THOUSAND dollars, depending on things like size, material and mold issues. (By the way? We have mold issues. Of course we do. Son of a bitch.) That's 7-25K that the bank won't include in the loan now because why do they want to give us more money to move into a house that's not a wise investment in its current state? (Keep in mind, the roof is THE ONLY problem. A huge problem, yes, but the ONLY problem in this PERFECT house that is EVERYTHING we want.)

So there are two possible outcomes here: Either the home owners will cut the cost of the new roof off of the agreed selling price (haha... right..) OR they will back out of the deal and try their luck at selling our... errr... their house to people that might not want to foot the cost of a very expensive home inspection and so might not find out that the roof is about to collapse and kill them in their sleep.

Piss and m-f'ing moan, you guys. This is really trying my patience. These people are not the nicest (WE ARE! WE ARE THE NICEST! THEY ARE THE ASSHOLEST!) and that's fine, you don't have to be nice, but wow. Can't you at least be honest and decent and maybe not try to sell us a house with a roof that could crash down and kill our unborn child? Or at least be up front about it and say, "Hey, just to let you know, here's the deal, because we don't want you to get surprised by a 25K ass reaming in a few months when oops, the shingles fly away and you have a really, really, really big sky light instead of a silly roof, ha ha! Also: fit your infant for a helmet because they're stylish AND practical in case of collapse!"

In the face of this newest house-related development, and contrary to what my whining would lead you to believe, I am choosing to think that the home owners will do the right thing and either fix the roof or cut the cost of the repair/replacement off of our costs. That's what nice people would do, it's what honest people would do. It's what people who care how happy complete strangers are would do. I really hope it's what they do. I'm trying to be very zen about this, and not imagine myself shoving pieces of bamboo under their fingernails until they agree to do things my way while I ask if they remember how I was nice before they fucked me out of my house? Haha! THOSE WERE GOOD TIMES, HUH, MEANIES?

...or something. Anyway. Keeping the ol' fingers crossed, and staying positive and calm because The Bean doesn't like the stress that I'm already so prone to. And really, stressing won't do anything for this situation, so bah. Does anyone know how to knit? Or maybe another soothing activity that doesn't include huge needles that I could use to exact my bloody revenge?

Monday, June 15, 2009

What do I do?

I have new neighbors. Maybe they aren't new, maybe our harsh winter months just kept them inside and hidden and away from me and my small, tight little world. Now that it's warm and the sun is shining, however, they gather on the stoop next door like a bunch of half-starved lions, turned away by any pride and left to straggle aimlessly. They lounge and recline, perching on vehicles and steps and lying in the too-long grass in various states of undress and exibition. They're all male, and they're all covered in badly-done tattoos that I, because of my work and personal affinity for body art, recognize not as expressions of self but as declarations of loyalty to a larger group. A more dangerous group. A group that most probably encourages the doing of some bad shit.

They are not shirtless because of the heat, at least not entirely so. They want those brands to be seen. They are preening. They are proud of themselves and each other, thinking they are important and worthy of attention and respect.

I fucking loath them.

I don't know their names or their ages, nor do I care to, but can only presume by their actions and lack of apparent motivation that they are not past their early twenties. I don't know anything about them but what I assume from their tattoos, their bandanas, their sagged pants and attitudes. What I know is also that I can no longer walk from my car to my front door without their eyes following me, their voices growling at me. Whether predawn or the darkest of night, they are there. They watch me when I move, talk to each other about me, say things to me that they should not say. I know that the affect they are having is intentional. They know I know, and they don't care.

They make me uncomfortable -- my woman's intuition SCREAMS when they approach me, and I immediately go from calm and waiting for my dog to do her business to angry and wanting nothing more than to let her off the leash she's straining against, as she's barking and growling and snarling in a show that is so uncharacteristic that I do not recognize it in my sweet natured pup. I do not let her loose, however, because I can see that they would hurt her more than she could hurt them. They would not hesitate to lash out at her, prove to each other that they are not afraid of some stupid dog, and I will not allow her to become their tool of badass expression.

They make me angry because I've never been concerned about living alone but I am now. It won't be an issue much longer -- The Boy and I are closing on a house as we speak, fingers crossed, and by this time next month I should be out of the apartment I've always loved but now despise and do not feel safe enough in -- but it is an issue NOW. I don't like feeling vulnerable, noticing how easy it would be to get into my apartment, or hide outside of it and wait quietly.

They make me angry because they are presumptuous. Every time they have approached me, I've been on the phone and had my dog on her leash outside, waiting for her to relieve herself. I am obviously occupied. They don't care, it does not phase them that they are intruding. They LIKE it, and their enjoyment drips out of their cocky grins, their leering eyes. I want to nutpunch them so hard, their grandsons will be impotent.

They make me angry because they persist. I have ignored them and yet they just keep it up.

Last night, I was on the phone with The Boy and waiting for the pup to do her thing in the grass, when the biggest of them (the one that does most of the talking) popped out from around the corner of his apartment. He said, "You want to see a cool trick?" and started toward me. My dog LOST. HER. DAMN. MIND. She started barking and lunging, snarling and growling at him, and he didn't stop coming. He didn't visibly register that she was there. I told him, "No, I don't want to see your trick and you should probably stay the fuck over there because she bites." Which... no, she doesn't. At least she never has. But she's also never put on this Big Tough Hound act, either, so who can say? Even my words and her obvious aggression did not stop him- he persisted, coming closer, and I said, "Seriously. She'll rip the shit out of you." He kind of laughed, and I went back to my phone conversation, which suddenly consisted of the boy saying, "Who is that? What the fuck does he want? What's going on? What's happening? Why is the dog barking like that? What's going on?" at a high rate of speed. Needless to say, I got the fuck back in the house because, oh, hello, giant strange man with obviously not-good intentions, I see you're suddenly 3 feet away! (And of course, my getting the fuck back in the house was done calmly and while ignoring him. Don't want to show the little pukebag that he had me riled.)

They make me angry because they scare me. I know better than to under estimate stupid people in large groups, and while I'm not saying that these boys (men?) are unintelligent, I'm saying that bravado makes a person do stupid things. Wanting to prove to your buddies how tough you are, how much of a man you are, makes a person do things that can be terrible. I don't like being scared. There are also never more than 6 of them, so I suppose that doesn't constitue a 'large' group, although they are all large individually. Tall, broad boys with the added weight of enormous chips on their shoulders... And I don't know that it would take more than one of a person that has 4 inches and 75 pounds on me to do some damage, if they had a mind to... Also: Working in the profession that I do, I feel reasonably secure in believing that these boys are not wholesome, sweet boys, but instead asshole fuckwads out to prove a point to the world. I don't want to be a point, and they seem to be trying to make me one. So I am a little bit afraid. And that pisses me right the hell off.

And I am at a loss. I don't know what to do, because I worry that whatever I do will make it worse. People like these get off on having control. If I were to confront them, they would know they are bothering me. If I continue ignoring them, they may take it as a sign of weakness. I just don't know what the hell to do.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Wherein I am a redneck.

I feel like writing, but am having an ugly, disgusting, not so good, very bad, pissy day. So I'm going to make lists instead of coming up with anything of interest or content.

Things I don't like:

-Strangers. I don't like it when they touch me, or look at me, or speak to me in an intimate way. It makes me so uncomfortable that I get physically squirmy and turn into one of Those People... The ones that are weird. The ones that freak other people out but what do I care because Strangers deserve to be scared, so fuck them.

-Flour. The kind you bake with. I can't touch it or see other people touch it. I also can't HEAR someone touching it. (Shut up. It does too make a sound.) It makes my teeth itch and then I DIE because have you ever touched flour? Urp. It makes me gag just thinking about it.

-Judgemental people. In my line of work, a lot of us become jaded and harden ourselves against any sort of sympathy toward the majority of the people we deal with. It's a defense mechanism, but also a result of the fact that you only have so much Give a Shit to give before you start wondering why people can't suck it up and solve their own problems. A lot of us become judgemental -- we see something we think we've seen a million times before, and the human aspect of the situation fails to register. We forget there are people under there with stories and lives and motives, and that nothing is ever REALLY the exact same as anything else. It's a challenge to remain open minded, but I think we should all try. It can't hurt anyone to treat another person with kindness and sympathy, and people respond to that even in the darkest of times.

-Tequila. It burns us, Precious. First of all, if I drink tequila I taste it for a week. I don't want to taste anything for a week. Secondly, I do silly things like decide that contrary to all evidence proving otherwise, I can TOTALLY do cartwheels. Also? Singing in public is my favorite.

Things I like:

-Physical contact. Any and all physical contact, as long as it isn't with a stranger. I have some sensory issues that cause my skin to be incredibly sensitive (or, more accurately, cause my perception of touch to be heightened) and I always feel better when I'm touching someone or being touched. It instantly soothes me. I especially love hugs. I know that makes me lame, because hugs are all gooey and mushy and whatever, but I just really do love them.

-The air at dusk in the summertime here in my hometown. It feels like silk against your skin. It feels alive. And truly, there is nothing that smells half so sweet as the air here at dawn and dusk. Can I just tell you that I really, really appreciate living in a rural state? Make fun of us as rednecks all you want, but at least our lungs aren't being choked by smog. Can I get a HELL YEAH for us hillbillies and our toxin-free air?

-Charity. Any and all charity. If you have something you can give another person to help them, it just feels nice. Plus? Doing something for nothing is good for the soul. I'm a firm believer in the idea that you're never given more than you can handle (because we're made stronger than we think we are, not because we're being coddled,) but also that when you're given more than you need it's a kind of responsibility to find a use for it and help someone else. I think it's part of our purpose here, to help each other. We need to look out for each other-- we're all in this together. (Keep your stick on the ice. QUICK! Name that show!)

-Jack Daniels. Hell to the yes. I love the way it tastes, I love the pretty color it is. I even love the way it smells. I'd wear that shit as perfume if I wouldn't get thrown in the drunk tank when I got pulled over for speeding (which hasn't happened in a long time, knock on wood, amen.) I'm going to have myself a nice double shot here in about a year, when this gestating thing is over and the breast feeding is done with, and I can't wait.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Lucky lady.

This gig's pretty cool.

I got up to get ready for work today after feeling kind of blah and bitchy all morning, trudged into the bathroom and shut the door to keep the dog out. (She responds to my blah/bitchy moods by becoming clingy, which doesn't so much work when I'm not feeling very affectionate. It actually makes me want to lock her in the closet so that the endless musical tinkling of her tags as she paces around me will stop.) I needed to get ready and didn't feel like tripping over her, as there's literally 8 square feet of floor space in my bathroom and my dog is easy to trip over even when she's not being a neurotic pain in the ass, which is never.

ASIDE: For the record, it's the dog's fault I was in a sour mood. I got home last night to find that she'd gotten a hold of my prenatal vitamins, which had been on my kitchen counter. She's NEVER gotten anything off the counter, I hadn't thought she was big enough, and why the hell would a bottle of pills be the first thing she snatched? Because she's crazy, that's why, and she wants to torture me until I pull all of my hair out and die. Anyway... This new development meant that the night I had planned was immediately scrapped and pasted over with a new agenda: Stay awake most of the night and keep an eye on the mutt to ensure that she hadn't ingested any of the pills and was going to die of iron poisoning. So I didn't sleep much for keeping an eye on her.

And of course she's fine. Better than fine. Not so much as a hitch in her giddy up. You'd never know she was a VERY BAD DOG last night. Silly damn girl didn't even have the decency to throw up or something for my troubles. (I kid. I don't want her to be sick. I'm thrilled she's not sick. Or, at least I would be, if I were awake.)

Anyway! What I was saying: I locked myself in the bathroom and got dressed, then decided to maybe do a little something with my face and hair area since I haven't in... uh... a really long time, and don't usually anyway but I was in need of a little help, what with the staying up all night. So I look in the mirror and as I'm turning to the side to make sure all of my very long, very unruly hair was up and out of the way, I see a bump.

A very distinct bump, in my stomach region.

I swear, I sat there and laughed for a good ten minutes. Not because there's a bump (there should be by this point, 4 months into The Knocked Up) but just because I was happy. I was so stupidly happy to be looking at visible proof, proof that ANYONE could see (if they knew what they were looking at) that this is real. I'm really pregnant, there's really a baby in there, and he/she is really okay right now.

It made my day. I've been pretty happy and relaxed since then, just content. Which is saying a lot, considering I've been at work all day and holy crap, do I hate my job right now. So yeah, this gig is pretty cool, pretty exciting. I'm really stoked. I can't wait to get BIGGER, actually, and I know people think I don't really mean that but I do. Bigger = baby is growing = healthy baby = AWESOME.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Roller Coaster (of Love)

Felt the little giblet move big time last night, no denying it.


It felt like going over the top of a big hill while driving way too fast. I actually leaned forward and went "wuuh--oh!" And then looked down at the pooch. I don't know what I thought I'd see, but after feeling my belly button get tickled from the inside (Not like that. But since we're on the subject, I NEED SOME OF THAT.) I guess I expected some sort of a flag to poke out. Like the kind that shoots out of a fake gun in a cartoon, but instead of "BANG!" it'd say "What up, Momma? IT'S ME!" or... I don't know, something. I haven't been sleeping much, so I'm a little fogged out, but it would totally say something in the way of a greeting.

Can I just tell you that holy shit, what a feeling? I mean... wow. But it's had me all up in the air since I felt it because (BUMMER ALERT!) when I was pregnant last time, the only time I felt the baby move was when she was dying. (I know, I'm sorry. I warned you.) I remember it so clearly- we were coming down the hill, on the way from the cemetery and my mother's funeral, to the picnic we were holding afterward. I was so thrilled to have something on that day be positive, so relieved and excited. Little did I know, right? The only reason I could feel her (I was about 14 weeks along) was because my uterus was losing fluid and... just, blah, whatever, I don't want to get into the sadness right now, and I only mention it to note that this RIGHT HERE, this memory, is the reason that feeling my baby move so strongly is wonderful but still terrifying.

I would give anything to not be afraid, to be confident that we can do this and it's all going to be okay. I would give anything to be free of this heavy, oppressive weight on top of our joy, and I am absolutely Kelly fucking green with envy when I see women breezing through their pregnancy without a care in the world. Oh, how I envy you, that you don't have to TRY to believe that your baby won't die, that you just assume everything will be okay.

Everything will be okay, I think. I think we're okay. And I'm so, so happy about this baby... Jesus, am I ever happy. I irritate myself with the stupid trained-monkey grinning all the time for no reason, because (as you may have noticed here) I am a generally cantankerous person. I try not to be, but I can admit this about myself: I'm a little bit (a lotta bit?) of a crabby pain in the ass sometimes. So this happiness is new, and it's foreign, and I don't trust it. But I'm trying, I am.

Hey, did I mention? I totally felt my baby move for real yesterday. (Feel free to insert monkey grinning *here.* Bananas are in a box next to the door.)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

I am the Frito Bandito.

That's not PC, is it? It was a funny commercial, though. Nice jingle. We seem, as a country, to have become consumed by these gasping vapors of "Oh, that's not nice!"

I, obviously, am one of the consumed. See: Irate post down there about Proposition 8.

Sorry about that. I won't go into it again, I was just... venting. Blowing my top some. I just don't like to think of people being hurt for being who they are. It makes me twitchy. So moving on.

I've been in New York for the past week or so, to put whomever reads this thing's mind at ease: I didn't go and throw myself into traffic in a fit of rage after the whole "Don't be mean to the gays, you mean meanies" post.

My sister lives there. In New York, that is-- the sister that's older, but I have trouble not calling her "My Little Sister." (Wasn't there a doll by that name a while ago?) The one that was there with me through all of the issues with our mother, the one I wound up and wind up mothering a good bit myself. There's another sister, too, an older one. Older by 14 years, or something like that... It's not that we aren't close, we just aren't AS close. Living with The Crazy will bond people together, I guess, and being as The Oldest missed most of that (she was around for Unstable and Rocky, but long gone from the house by the time Oh Shit and Full On Fucked Up hit) she had trouble understanding the extent of it all. So that has a way of driving a rift between people, you know, when one of them is saying how hard a situation is, and the other is saying it can't possibly be so bad because they haven't looked it in the eye.

...I can't tell yet if this is going to be a blog about New York and how it's beautiful but smells like urine, or about my mother and how hard it was to leave my sister. Shit. I'm all discombobulated, here. I stepped off the plane harboring some nasty cold bug that has since burrowed itself into my head and neck and stomach, and the resulting fever on top of this pregnancy thing is making me a little bit insane. Oops. Correction: A little bit MORE insane.

Speaking of the bug I have: I got it from my sister's dickhead fiance. He was hacking all over everything while I was there, saying, "I'm not contagious."

My pasty white ass.

That guy's about 7 feet tall and might be just north of 250 pounds. Do you know how much mucous and general disgusting shit can come out of a person that big? A LOT, that's how much. And when he's pretty much spraying all and sundry everywhere he points his hack hole... Well, how were we supposed to avoid catching it? We weren't. The Older and I both got it, as we were obviously going to. And that makes him just goddamned rude.

Huh. I guess it's going to be about New York, after all. In a fashion, anyway. I think I want to talk about Big Boy and The Older.

See, The Oldest has always had this idea that The Older would marry the first person she seriously dated. I always bucked against that because I thought it was trite and that The Oldest was passing judgement against The Older and the fact that she wasn't much for dating or friends or people or being social at all. So I defended her. Wrongly, as it turns out, because as nice as Big Boy is, he's a manipulative, whining pain in the ass sometimes, and I'm afraid that part of the reason The Older puts up with that is that she's afraid to be alone. I think sometimes that she's afraid she won't find someone else to love her, so she stays with Big Boy and his mother.

Wait. Did I mention they're caring for his bed ridden mother? Oh, fuck, this post could go on for YEARS... Okay, so Big Boy's mother is bed ridden. She's not in bed because she's sick, she's SICK because she's IN BED. She's BEEN in that bed for the last 25 years. (I'm not exaggerating. That bed. The whole time. 25 years. No, wait. She was hospitalized for the entire duration of Big's high school years, during which time he had to fend for himself. So her ass was ridden to a different bed that time.) The reason she's been in that bed for 25 years is that she understood that if she could care for herself, eventually her son would leave her and have his own life, and she would be alone. So she took herself a lie down one day, and just decided not to get up.

No joke, people. This is the extent of the woman's selfishness: She's decided to kill herself (the health problems associated with a near-30-year stretch of bed rest are terrible and will end her life) so that her son cannot leave her.

So you can see that Big might have had some good long years to study the in's and out's of extreme selfishness and manipulation. Case in point:

We went to The Met for The Older's birthday. She loves that place, and she was so excited to show it to me. (Let me stress here, as I have before: My sister is the closest thing in the world to my heart. She is my soul, I would die and kill for her without question. She is the sweetest, most caring, giving person in the world. She is also a touch spineless when it comes to people. This is not a good combination for her sake. Let us carry on.) So we go in, and not 10 minutes into our little adventure, Big picks a fight with The Older.

On her birthday.

In her favorite place in the world.

With me (Who had been on planes and in airports for 13 motherfucking hours to get there to be with her) standing a foot away.

ON HER BIRTHDAY. Did I say that? Because let me also say that our birthdays have always been extra special to us- we make them special for each other. We've always thought that your birthday is the one day a year that people should express their happiness that you're alive, and that is a pretty precious thing that you cling to when you grow up in a home as volatile as ours could be.

Anyway. It was the single most juvenile, selfish, ridiculous load of bullshit I've ever seen in my life, and because of it I can honestly say that I will never look at that man the same way again. Ever. He stormed off. IN THE MET. Stomped off like he was 6 years old!

Excuse me, but if you're a grown ass person, what in the hell are you doing? Just what in the hell are you doing A: picking a fight with someone in public (a very classy, quiet, upscale, famous public, Jesus Christ, amen,) and B: Stomping off? Oh, that's right. You've no business acting that way AT ALL, so scrote up and act like a big boy, there, Big Boy.

I said as much. It was not well received. Now Karma is kicking my ass for being mean and I keep trying to hack up my spleen. Oh, and The Older wound up caving in and basically apologizing to him for his big fat leaking man-gina and the feelings she didn't hurt in the first place. Whatever. All I know is that I no longer think Big is at all good for The Older, and if he ever gives me another reason to punch him in the throat, I'm not going to hesitate. Unless, I suppose, it's in The Met on my sister's birthday.

Because for the love of God, we can all show restraint on occasion.

(The trip was probably entirely lovely. This has just been stewing in my head since it happened over a week ago, and I needed to express it. Also, the cold I have is distracting me from the fact that I don't know but I'm almost sure that I can feel the baby moving, which is kind of pissing me off. The distraction, not the movement, which is awesome and amazing and incredible.)