There are two events in my past that permanently changed who I turned out to be today. The first occurred on November 3rd, 2001 at 10:13 a.m. That was the day my daughter was born. Without much ado the doctor handed a squalling, pink ball of human to me, a seventeen year old senior in high school without a clue. I looked down at her with amazement and fear, wondering where to go from there. We went home three days later and thus began my transformation into the person we call mother.
I didn’t know much about babies except how they were made (a little too late for that one) and that they made a lot of noise and stink. The first two weeks were filled with round-the-clock feedings dispensed with tiny three ounce bottles, unexpected projectile vomiting, a million foul diaper changes and little sleep. What sleep we did get was often interrupted when the baby swing needed to be cranked up again, which she delightfully announced with shrill cries. I soon learned that I could rock the swing with my foot while asleep. I also learned to recognize the small noises indicating an impending eruption and that a diaper bag must be taken everywhere, every time. I developed the keen ability to use the bathroom one handed and bathing her without half drowning the poor child. People underestimate the value of a spouse. As I didn’t have one I was doing it all alone, what we call being a single mother.
I went back to school three weeks after she was born. I was now a single student mother, riding the bus with my infant daughter and doing homework while burping her. Science is a lot more fun that way, if you ask me. Not long after, I was instructed by my father to get a job. I was now a working, single, student mother. When I started working as a cashier at the local grocery store I had to hire a babysitter, making me a poor, single, working student mother. When she was seven months old I graduated high school and moved out of my father’s house. I became, you guessed it, a poor, single, working, paying-the-bills mother. But I loved it.
My daughter and I were a team. She would giggle and brighten my day, and I would provide her basic needs. She accompanied me to pick up my paycheck every Tuesday and delighted in riding the conveyor belt. She rarely got sick, ate anything I offered her, and made everyone around her smile. I loved being a mother.
The second event occurred on June 12, 2004 at 3:17 p.m. That was the day my son was born. By then I was a happily married, not working, twenty year old mother. Of two! Again without much ado the doctor handed me a squirming, angry ball of human. But this time I was more prepared for the demands of an infant… or so I thought.
Whereas my daughter ate anything given to her, my son refused every formula and nipple. Changing my daughter was uneventful, but changing my son was a duck-and-switch challenge. Sleeping through the night came relatively easy for my daughter. My son screamed for six months of nights. My daughter delighted in every new person she met; my son only liked three people and loudly proclaimed his dissent among others. What was going on? Why was this so difficult? Did I do something wrong?
Then one day as I was changing his outfit my son giggled. I laughed, he giggled. We carried on. From then on out I accepted his differences with composure and learned to enjoy them. Sure he had to have that pacifier all day, but he looked so cute when he spit it out to concentrate on something that tickled his fancy. Of course he didn’t like most food, but watching him stuff his mouth with something he did like was amusing. I found myself enjoying duo-motherhood.
I chose these events because my world revolves around my children, day in and day out. I would feel lost and incomplete without them. They make me the neurotic, frazzled, muddled mess that I am, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. They make me…me.
- .... if someone closes a child support case against you, you should be GRATEFUL and say THANK YOU!
- .... if you offer soldiers a way to put part of their paychecks into a savings account that earns 10%, you shouldn't make it so complicated that they can't take advantage of it!
- .... if all of the modem lights are green and your computer says it's connected to the Internet, but you still can't check your email or log onto Messenger to talk to your deployed husband, Verizon shouldn't expect a very happy customer!
- .... if you make and drink all of the Folgers in the house, you should buy another canister!
- .... if the economy is in the gutter, don't hold out on passing legislation for no good reason!
- .... if you use the toilet, FLUSH IT!!
- .... if your four year old boy has turned up the volume on the t.v. and closed the door to his bedroom, don't expect a happy ending!
- .... if America elects a black president GET OVER IT!!
- .... if you delete me from your Myspace and expect me to be insulted, you will be sorely disappointed!
"Mom, where does Norton live?"
"Norton is not real."
"Yes he is my principal told me about him!"
Lily: "Caleb! Did you hear that?"
"A scary noise!"
"Oh! I hear it! I hear it!"
Caleb: "I heard it! I heard it that time!"
Lily: "Mom! Where IS he?"
"He lives upstairs."
"I thought you said he wasn't real!"
"Then why did you ask?"
"Can we go up there?"
"Because there's no stairs."
"Yeah there are, right there in the ceiling!"
"That square in the ceiling, that's where they pull the stairs down and go up there and see Norton!!"
"So can we go?"
"Hey Caleb I know! We can go up there tonight!"
"Mom can take us!"
Mom: "No she can't."
Caleb: "We'll get Uncle Jason to go!"
"But won't the ghost know we are people?"
"Yeah... I know! We can wear our Halloween costumes!"
"Yeah! Then the ghost won't see us being people he will see us being monsters and come out to meet us!!"
"But what if he sees our shoes and thinks we're not monsters?"
"We can just wear socks!!"
Weekly Weigh In: 224
To Go: 44
Who the heck invented CHERRY Pepto-Bismol? Seriously!!
What the heck does BINOMIAL mean? BINOMEANS you will understand Algebra, that's my guess.
What about RADICAL? It's RADICAL that you think you can do this after not being in a classroom for nine years!!
And how about LINEAR EQUATION? I can't even think of something witty for that one!
Why does mail take so long to get to Iraq?
Who invented the TI 83 and why did they think a calculator needed three functions for EACH BUTTON? Easy to use, psh.
Is it really necessary to sweat when you exercise? Really? Isn't there a better way?
Just because Albert Einstein could work these problems doesn't mean everyone can.
If you can't tell, I've been having a little trouble with College Algebra lately. I haven't been to a math class in nearly NINE YEARS because the last two years of high school I wasn't required to take a math course. That's Paint Rock for you. How did I manage to graduate? Anyway, the first assignment in Algebra is chapter one, which is a "refresher" chapter intended to wake up your mind in preparation for what follows. We were given two days to complete this 100 page chapter, and I don't even recognize this crap. Given the instructor won't even review this chapter before moving on to bigger and harder things inclines me to DROP THIS COURSE and enroll in a remedial one. GO ME.
Warfare. Several types.
- The War of Food is pretty self explanatory. You battle with cakes, cookies, sodas, chips, bread, butter, ice cream, cereals, you name it. Your only allies are carrots, cauliflower, broccoli, tomatoes, cucumbers, oranges, berries, apples, and grapes. Oh, and your allies are very fickle. "But I'm only a measly stalk of broccoli! I can't POSSIBLY satisfy you like a cupcake can! Don't ask me to do it, PLEASE, I have shoots and leaves at home!!"
- The War of Exercise is equally explanatory. As soon as you make the decision to work out, your body suddenly moves slower than my sister getting ready to go to work. S-L-O-W. Suddenly your legs can't support your weight to get off the couch, and your hand has died gripping the remote. Your fingers can't tie your walking shoes and you suddenly have to go to the bathroom. Your body cries out, "PLEASE! Don't make me get on that treadmill! It's a DEATH SENTENCE! I have no chance! I have no backup! These fat cells are utterly USELESS!!"
- The War of Self-Control is my biggie. It has several allies behind enemy lines that sneak up and attack, usually around midnight:
I want a cookie!!
Get me a cookie get me one right now, gimme gimme gimme!!
Hello, I said NOW?!!!
What do you mean, NO??
I can have whatever I want!!
- The War of Lies usually follows next:
"One cookie won't hurt. Shoot, TWELVE cookies wouldn't move the scale!"
"Come on, you KNOW you're gonna work out tomorrow."
"Just one TEENSY little cookie...."
- Then you have the War of Self-Denial:
"I didn't eat that cookie. Nope. Wasn't me. Do you see crumbs anywhere? An empty package? I didn't think so. What about my teeth? They're ALWAYS Oreo cookie black. Don't believe me, I don't care. Whatever!!"
- Last but not least, the infamous War of the Church Clothes:
"Soldier!! Get me one set of attire suitable for public outings!"
"Here ma'am, from Old Navy!"
"Psh! I can't button this over my boobs! Get me another!"
"Here's a better one!"
"You know amazing thrift store finds never work!! Hop to it Private!!"
"Here we go ma'am, perfect! Target never fails us!!"
"It may never fail you but look at me! No, don't look at me!! Get me another outfit, and it better be right!!"
"Okay, okay, here we go.... one from J.C. Penny!"
"You are an utter disgrace. Do you see what we are up against? Look at them, look!! One more chance, Private!!"
"This is the last one, ma'am. Old faithful, from Wal-Mart."
"Now you're talking, soldier! Bring it here, and clean up this mess of REJECTS!!"
While sittin' here on the porch I've been hearin' a lot about this stuff called “beer can chicken.” Best I can figure a person takes a chicken and sticks a half a can of beer up its ass and precedes to put this thing on a charcoal grill to cook. And that ain't all, they stand the thing upright like it was a king or something. Now anybody knows any self-respecting chicken ain't gonna feel right sittin' on its ass on a beer can in a BBQ grill. It just don't seem natural. And besides that, I can see no reason to waste a half a can of beer by stickin' the thing up a dead chicken's ass. BEEER IS FOR DRINKIN', NOT FOR STICKIN' IT UP A DEAD CHICKEN'S ASS. And that ain't all. Charcoal ain't for cookin' chicken, it's for filtering whiskey. If enough people keep burning the charcoal then what the hell are we gonna filter the whiskey with? Whiskey is more important than chicken anyway. And besides that, any good cooker would get insulted with charcoal in it and a chicken with a beer can stuck up its ass sittin' there like the Pope or something.
In conclusion, we here at the Round Table on the front porch figure if you want good chicken you simply build a good old smokey fire in your cooker and gently lay the chicken in there on its back. Then you go drink a cold beer. When it gets done, my faithful dog LD will let you know. Oh, and the beans must be cooked on the stove. It's real hard to keep them from fallin' through the grill on the BBQ.