I Don’t Want to Talk About It (an essay of 445 words)

angel sad statueIn November of 2012, I wrote a blog post called I Have a Pimple.  Two thousand and twelve, y’all. That was over three years ago and the pimple was already pretty big by then.

In 2013, I wrote Are You There, God? It’s Me, Linda, which is another post about my pimple where I don’t talk about my pimple in all its glorious and gory detail.

I tried to deal with my pimple by managing my own life better.  In 2014, I decided to be more outwardly focused and I joined the board of directors for a non-profit. (If you have buckets of money to donate to charities, call me! Text me!)

I entered into 2015 with a mindset of standing up for myself. Ends up, 2015 was a year of big changes.  I quit my job. I remember distinctly the day I put my notice in. I remember because I tweeted this:

It was a glorious summer. Everything a summer with no job should be.  I will be forever grateful for the summer of 2015.

And then October came and the winds of change blew hard. It took me awhile before I could share openly, but in early December, I made my Emancipation Proclamation and broke the news of my pending divorce.

In other words, that damn pimple exploded all over the mirror of my life.

Divorcing in the age of social media is hard. He and I have agreed to be kind and considerate of each other, so I’ve mostly kept my damn mouth shut. But here I am writing about it. Actually, I’m writing about not writing about it. I know he could easily be reading this, and my children are possibly reading it too – at least the brave and rebellious ones who click the link even against their better judgment – so I won’t be talking about it. I won’t tell you about my pimple. Just that it has popped and now it needs some TLC so it can heal.

But you should know that even if I’m (we’re) not talking about it on social media or on our blogs or at the Thanksgiving dinner table with all our relatives, we are dealing with the mess of this pimple. He is and I am and our children are.  We won’t bleed all over you, we’ll just bleed quietly over here where we won’t bother anyone. No, really. Don’t worry about us. Could you hand me that tourniquet, please? Thanks.

Back in 2012, I wrote a post called Strength is a Clever Disguise.  We’re being strong. We’re dealing with the mess. We’re healing. But be gentle with us, OK?

Because sometimes what we can’t talk about takes all of our energy.

 

By |February 10th, 2016|Indiscriminate Drivel, Married Life, Not even a little funny|Comments Off on I Don’t Want to Talk About It (an essay of 445 words)

Well, this explains a lot…

busy mind 2It was a typical evening, nothing out of the ordinary. A Friday night, heading into the weekend. Kids all asleep, house quiet. We turn off our devices and nightstand lights and climb into bed, kiss each other goodnight, and then cuddle to sleep.

Well, that’s a lie. See, we were already in bed and we never cuddle, but I was taking creative license.

So let me try this again.  We turn off devices and lights, and like any couple married this long, we turn away from each other and sort of grunt a goodnight in the general direction of the other.  I hug the edge of the mattress like it’s a life preserver. Try not to swoon.

As I start to relax, my brain wakes up.

Brain: Hi! Hey!! Hi! Hi, Linda. Wanna play? Let’s play!

Me: Go to sleep, Brain.

Brain: But no! I have so many thoughts. Things that I need you to consider. Did you RSVP for that stupid birthday party? When will the kids be old enough to do their own RSVPs? You’ve got to get those boots sent back to Amazon. I bet that salmon is going bad in the refrigerator. You should have known you wouldn’t make that salmon recipe this week. You do this all the time.

Me: Shut-up, Brain.

Brain: We have so many thinks to think. The Christmas stuff has to come down this weekend for sure. I hope the weather breaks so we can get the outside lights down without suffering hypothermia. But we should at least unplug them even if we don’t get them down this weekend. It’s bad enough to leave them up but to keep letting the automatic timer turn them on every night…

Me: Goodnight, Brain.

Brain: You have to prep for that Steering Committee Meeting on Tuesday. You were supposed to do that today. And let’s create a proposal for your charity to improve their use of technology. You said you were going to do that, now is as good as any time. We should do something fun with the kids. Sarah goes back to school Sunday. Something active. God, I hate winter. It’s so cold out there!

Me: Why do you do this to me? Why can’t you be like him?

Brain: Him? Who?

Me: *nudges husband with foot*

Husband: *grunts* *farts* *snores*

Brain: Gross.

Me: Hey, honey?

Husband: *grunts* *gropes*

Me: BILL!

Husband: WHAT?

Me: What do you think about when you go to sleep?

Him: Your nipples.

*turns over* *snores*

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

It’s just so much more complicated being a woman.

By |January 10th, 2015|Indiscriminate Drivel, Married Life|Comments Off on Well, this explains a lot…

Don’t Freak Out

Dex Easter for The HubShe wasn’t expected; she just arrived at my front door and said “Hey!” as she walked in like she always does.

She may be 30 but she’s my child and this was her house at one time and there is no need to knock. I’m glad we have a ‘just walk in’ house. I like that.

She was toting the car-seat carrier with the heavy sleeping baby as she breezed into the family room.

“What’s up?” I asked.

“I have to tell you something and I didn’t want to do it over the phone.” she said. She was casual, setting the baby seat down and keeping busy with putting the diaper bag and her purse on the breakfast bar. She walked into the kitchen and opened the refrigerator looking for something to eat. I’m glad we have the kind of house where they just head to the refrigerator and look for something to eat. I like that.

She came out with some cheese and was busy breaking it into pieces and popping them into her mouth as she picked up the story.

“Don’t freak out.” she said. “Dex’s pediatrician referred us to a specialist and we just came from the appointment. They did some tests and we don’t have the results yet, but they think he may have some neurological disorder, a degenerative one.”

She was minimizing it. Her every action said “This is no big deal. We will not over-react.” but I’m a mother too and I know this child of mine and I know how strong the gene is to minimize something on the outside while you’re falling to pieces on the inside. That’s my gene. I gave her that gene.

While her actions belied the situation, her eyes gave her away and the quiver in her voice was, well, degenerative. She continued “If he has this, over time he will lose muscle control on half his body. His mouth will droop, he will list to one side, he will shuffle when he walks. He will drool a lot.”

She was barely holding it together now.

I didn’t hesitate. I used the only comfort that I am comfortable in giving, my words.

“Well, first of all, let’s wait for the results. But guess what? If he does have this, here’s the deal. That boy is the luckiest boy in the world because he will be surrounded by a huge army made up of the Metzler family and the Murphy family and the Doty family and the Hemenway family. This is where having a huge family of freaks comes in handy. That boy? He will be loved on and laughed with and laughed at and challenged and fought with and the only thing he will be allowed to feel amongst this crazy parade of freaks and weirdos is normal, because he will be.”

And I held her as she let the tears flow and hoped she knew that what I said was both wise and true.

I woke up then, the morning light creeping around the edges of the window shade.  I was shaking and crying myself, this awake me.  In the dream, I didn’t crack. In the dream I was strong and confident and wise but in the hangover of the dream I was shaken.

It was just a dream, I knew. But every aspect of it was so real – the house, the actions of my grown daughter, her mannerisms, the way the scene played out, all fresh and real in my waking mind.

I lay there and reveled in the wonder of my own imparted wisdom. Would I have actually come up with that in a real situation? Could I have?

I realized the mom I was in that dream is the mom I aspired to be, hoped I would be when called upon by a crisis.  It has a tiny element of the “Suck it up, Buttercup.” for which I am known, perhaps, but it had an emotional fortitude that I wasn’t sure I had a right to claim – that hasn’t yet been tried and tested in the real world.

My husband rolled over, feeling the bed shaking from my silent crying. I told him about the dream and said “That’s the mom I should be.”

“That’s the mom you already are.” he said nonchalantly as he wrapped his arms around me. He comforts with his arms and his empathy. I comfort with words of strength.

I hope that if the day comes when both of our methods to comfort are needed to face some crisis, our children feel the fullness of what the two of us bring to the table on our parenting journey.

As parents, we may list to one side and drool occasionally, but we love them and, in the end we all have a little bit of freak in us anyway.

I didn’t freak out. I came downstairs and wrote on my blog.

 

By |May 21st, 2014|Married Life, Not even a little funny, The Parent Hood|Comments Off on Don’t Freak Out