Happy Thanksgiving

I don’t get days off, but don’t expect some long and poignant post today. Well, maybe you shouldn’t expect that most days. Today is Thanksgiving, a day that people set aside in hopes that it makes them feel grateful for everything that they have for at least one day a year. It’s a day that politics should be left out of. I’m sure Halloween has pretty gruesome history behind it, still going to celebrate that. It’s not about the past; it’s about where we move forward.

I’m thankful for every day. I’m thankful for my beautiful boys. I’m thankful for their successes and their struggles, because both make me a better mother and human. I’m thankful for my supportive family, who’s always there when I need them the most. I’m thankful for my husband, who always lifts me up when it feels like everyone else wants to take me down. I’m thankful that I have a house, food, and loved ones. I have a lot to be thankful of, which I’m very thankful for every day. We don’t need a single day to be grateful. We should be grateful every day.

If you are lucky enough to spend the day with family, remember how lucky you are. If you are working today, putting your life on the line to ensure the safety of others, thank you for your service. We are thinking of you, grateful for your selflessness. If you aren’t fortunate enough to be with family, be with the family you choose. Blood doesn’t mean family. Love does.

Happy Thanksgiving and remember the lessons of today every day of your life. Even in darkness, there is something to be grateful for.

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Things I Learned At My 10 Year Reunion

There comes a time when you sit back and wonder “I wonder how much I’ve actually changed since high school”. Maybe not, maybe you just wonder how much other people have. You’re thankful to have a few good friends you’ve kept since then, happy that there are people in the world you can’t get tired of, even if no one else remembers them. (I heart you, forgotten one.) You learn valuable lessons at reunions. Ok, not really valuable lessons. However, you definitely learn some very interesting things.

  1. It’s always funny to see them fall from grace. The most important lesson you learn is that you want to see those cocky or stuck up people fail in life. It’s human nature. You want to see that girl who was the prettiest and snobbiest in your class suddenly gain a 100 lbs. and work as a waitress at some dive. That popular football player that was hot stuff in school? You want to see them overweight and unsuccessful. Unfortunately, sometimes this isn’t the case. Fortunately, most of the time it is and you spend the entire reunion laughing. Yes, I was sober and laughing.
  2. You can leave the drama at home, but the drama can sometimes follow you. This is a sketchy one. In our Facebook group for the reunion, someone basically said “Leave the drama home at home because no one wants it”. The first thing I thought of was “if you still hold a grudge from high school at this point, you’ve got more problems to deal with”. Admittedly, this fact really gets tested when say.. I don’t know.. someone gets so wasted they use your boobs as punching bags while muttering nonsense. Then it occurs to you there are only a few options when this happens: you could a) smile and nod and hope it stops; b) push one of your best friends in between; c) walk away; d) punch offending person in the face and talk about how it was worth it while getting tossed out by security. I recommend every option but the last, it’s generally not worth  it and jail time isn’t cool anymore.
  3. Cliques are cliques are cliques. Remember everyone who hung out with each other in high school? So do they. As if high school really just picks up after 10 years, you look around noting that the same people are hanging out with each other in various parts of the bar. You have those two girls that never spoke to anyone because they were too pretty to be bothered with those who are beneath them. Those two guys that were star jocks that are still way to amazing to be bothered with everyone else unless they are being admired. The popular kids still hung out only with each other. Don’t worry though, while you make that observation you realize that you’re sitting with people you only saw a week ago and never lost contact with instead of catching up with people you barely associated with anyways. Apparently if you never cared to bother 10 years ago, there’s really no point now. And don’t judge, you’re just as guilty and you shouldn’t feel bad. There’s a reason for all of it.

Aside from realizing you said goodbye you being young and stupid 10 years ago and you feel old as a result, you have nothing to be afraid of from hitting this milestone. You’re older and thankfully wiser than you once were. (In said scenario earlier, my short-tempered self would definitely had snapped and assaulted the person like a bear being poked.) Now you can take a deep breath and face those scary 30’s because you just saw 50 other people who also used to be young with you becoming older too and sometimes not nearly as gracefully as you are. I admit that my post-pregnancy body scared me going into the reunion because I didn’t want to be a chubby version of me that gets mocked because I was a twiggy teen. But when you see people balding or much chubbier than you are for a reason not as good as yours, you feel so much better. I sure did and I’m ashamed to admit that this fact doesn’t shame me.

When You Count Down The Days

Soon enough we’ll meet the ever active little boy that’s been cozily growing for about 9 months now. Well, maybe not soon enough because soon enough seemed like a little while ago when the major discomforts of carrying a child started. The idea that he’ll come when he wants to occurs to me more on days where I feel the most miserable. He’ll be here when he wants, which I hope is soon. Physically I’m beyond ready for him. Now we have everything we could need for him, so we’re definitely ready for when he wants. Which I’ll repeat, I hope is soon.

It didn’t occur to me sooner, that I wasn’t the only one who was anxious. My parents since leaving for vacation calls daily, sometimes twice daily. Each call is started with a “how are you feeling? Trip to the hospital yet?” Part of me wonders if they are anxious for him to be born or anxious that he would be born before their vacation ended. My son, who’s also with them since we didn’t think it was fair he missed our usual trip because I couldn’t go, also is excited and anxious to meet him. So anxious that he admits that he doesn’t want to be gone when it happens. He assures me that his brother will wait though, because he’s too awesome of a big brother.

Then there is my sweet and overly excited husband. This is the same person that the day after the baby shower had to go out and buy everything else we needed because “you never know when he’ll come”. Then proceeded to spend the rest of the night assembling everything even though he had to wake up early in the morning to drive across state for a class for his job. It seems every hour I get a call or texts of “just wondering how you’re feeling”. I don’t translate that as a concern for how I’m actually feeling; it’s a way to ask “are you in labor yet?”.

As the time comes closer, you realize that everyone is just as anxious as you. All your family and friends want to meet your newborn almost as much as you and your partner do. He’ll arrive when he’s ready however he’s ready. For me, I’m convinced after my first one that all my children are going to make an exciting entrance into this world. I hope I’m wrong, and the only exciting entrance he makes is the excitement of meeting him and not that I give birth on the side of the street while out for a walk.

Then You’re Showered With Gifts

At some point in the pregnancy, you might get lucky and have someone throw a shower. Then you start putting on clothes to attend and criticize everything you put on because each thing makes you look fatter than the others. At least at the hair salon before hand, people said I looked small for how far along I was. I took comfort in their obvious lie for the sake of my self-esteem. Eventually you just realize that you’re almost 9 months pregnant and nothing will make you look skinny for the next year unless you’re blessed with Jessica Alba genes. I’m not; I’d be more ok with it if I were.

It’s hard to express gratitude at times like that. There are so many people and so many gifts. It’s very overwhelming when you realize the love and support you have from your family, all your family. The idea that they have to show up to an event to show their love is false, the thought is the most important. With this love and support, the day becomes overwhelming. To me, it was probably the most overwhelming point so far in the pregnancy. Luckily I didn’t have to be center of attention, that would make the situation much more anxious than it would’ve been. And I made away with only one person touching my stomach, which I’ll let slide because she’s her.

Even more overwhelming than the ritualized event, is when you see the car packed full when you leave. It then becomes, “oh crap, where am I going to put all this stuff”. You think about all the clothes you’re going to need to wash. (Take comfort, baby clothes are small and you can generally fit most of them all in one load.) Then you think of all the stuff your husband is going to have to put together, and avoid reading instructions, because that’s what men do. It was a long but rewarding and productive weekend, and now we can sit back and just wait for this little person to grace us with his presence. Hopefully soon, I’m done being pregnant. I feel like I’ve run out of room in my body for him, or I’m just really uncomfortable and hopeful. At this point, I’m sure everyone feels that way.

In the end, it’s worth it. More important than the gifts you received at the event, you realize that you have an incredible support system of people that are going to love their new family member. The more love that surrounds your little bundle, the healthier and happier he’ll grow up to be. Plus, imagine all the advice he’ll have to sift through the rest of his life. He’ll be an individual that grows into various generations and cultures, and that with love is priceless for your child.

The Joys of Sickness and Feeling Fat

Sure, that title could easily describe me these days but I’m not the sick one I’m referring to. My darling husband, who is never sick, ends up with a nasty infection leaving him to stay in bed for 5 days of misery. He’s recovered nicely, and now I can get back to writing here. Yes, the flu is minor to him, he needed something more. It rattled him enough to want to get a flu shot next year, so I guess in retrospect I won.

During his sickness, it was either out of concern of me catching his illness or the fact that I’m in refusal of leaving the house, I was forced out with my lovely friend to attend a Jack and Jill. At first, no big deal it could be fun right? Only nothing fits me, nothing except this one pair of maternity pants that I had to buy for the fact that nothing fit me, and an ill-fitting shirt that made me look more fat than pregnant. I realized that in that moment of feeling disgust, that next time I hear a skinny non-pregnant person refer to herself as “fat”, I can’t guarantee I won’t punch her in the face. You don’t know the meaning of “feeling fat” until you’re pregnant. And I’m only 2 months in, I’m pretty sure I’m not going to last 9 months.

It was good to show up at the Jack and Jill though, it was like a mini middle/high school reunion. I remembered a few things though. Firstly, I remembered I hated high school. Secondly, I remembered I hated social events. I think I spent more time making fun of the band and how awful they were than I did actually doing anything else. In my defense though, I could play better music and I don’t know how to play an instrument. I hope that proves to you just how awful they were. Another sign? A band that plays… sorry, pretends to play rock music should not play a Lady GaGa song. It never ends well.

The moral of the story is the lesson I learned is that I shouldn’t leave the house under normal circumstances; I’m a bitter and sarcastic person with a distaste for other people. Being pregnant and not in the “glowing happy stages” of it, I probably should stay home because I’m a lot worse.

Goodbye Old Friend

Before we get into the post of sappiness ahead, I’d like to take some time to wish you all a “Happy Holidays”. I’m sure our family is going to have a great one. I’ll be back on Monday in full swing of things.

Wednesday I called in sick to my posts, so my apologies. But we’ll ignore that fact and pretend that my error was on purpose to make a splendid post in honor of the first man of my life: my father. Any girl would be lying if they didn’t admit that they were in some form of being a bit of a daddy’s girl. I’m the only daughter; it would be a total lie in denying it.

Today is his first day of enjoying the rest of his life in retirement, just in time for the holidays. I’m sure it’s a bittersweet moment for him, but he deserves it. My father always worked when I was a kid, but he did it for us. He worked hard so all of us could be happy and have things we wanted or needed. I used to joke, and still joke now, that he worked so much to get away from my family. Except me, I’m awesome; my brothers are a different story entirely. He received a fitting goodbye from his co-workers of a man who was admired by them. I don’t blame them; I still admire him every day.

They don’t see him fully in his element. At work he is their supervisor that did his job well, but at home he raised a decent enough family and adores his grandchildren. I only hope now that in his retirement, he can enjoy them to the fullest. Though I bet in a week he goes crawling back, this place is an animal house sometimes. I’m kidding… maybe. But if it wasn’t so crazy, we wouldn’t be nearly as interesting.

All joking aside, I’m sure my brothers can agree that this was a long time coming and no one ever thought he’d actually retire. Now, he’s young enough to enjoy the rest of his life and I hope he has a while longer with us. I speak for all of us when I say, you rock and thanks for everything.

Every Saint has a past….

But does every sinner really have a future? Maybe they do. I understand what point is, there’s always a time for a downfall and a time of redemption. I also understand that sometimes redemption isn’t even the right word for what occurs, as usually redemption and downfall have the same qualities of intense crying and guilt. That’s my random thought of the day.

With power and life getting back to normal, I can now do my posts regularly 3 days a week again. Fantastic, just in time for the holidays! We all know I love the holidays. In the upcoming weeks, I’ll be posting progress of my Christmas Village. So be aware of that to either avoid or enjoy it. Your choice, I won’t judge. Aloud anyways.

To the post, today I write about friends. Sometimes I think about the friends I have, the real friends I have. Sure the number has greatly dwindled but I’m sure I still have a few. At least they’re good liars and pretend they still like me. I’ll take it; it’s like a hungry person on a diet: sometimes you just take what you can get. You really want a nice piece of bacon, but you’ll settle for that carrot. Then even that carrot just tastes good.

I just compared friends to bacon and carrots. I’m either really hungry or there’s a reason I only have a few friends. I’m ok with that, because my greatest friends are as awesome as bacon. You can rely on them for greatness; you can miss the great ones when you lose contact with them. Carrots, they’re crunchy and difficult, something you rely on because you know it’s always in the fridge. Maybe I should get some breakfast before finishing writing this.

I understand why I don’t have many friends. I’m abrasively rude in a loving way (added that in to make me feel better), sometimes I’d rather be alone than out, and quite honestly I lack patience with other people. There’s also the “they’re better off anyway” thing, for whatever reason I decide that. The real friends won’t care; the ones who make you think they are the real friends would rather make you feel like dirt than give a crap. Sometimes the latter serves their purpose, the support in between the insults seem more honest than people who spend all day making you feel happy. Most of the time, they’re just good for making you feel like you’re less than you are. That’s never ok, however funny everyone else thinks it is.

I’m becoming ok with this fact. I know I have my Chickies to go to if I really need someone. Though we never talk or get together as much as I’d like, the unsaid understanding is they’ll be right at my side always. We were there throughout high school, and they stood by me when I got married. I know between them and my husband and even my little dogs, I have a support system that makes me luckier than those sad people who think those people laughing in their face care. I know I’ll get laughed at for this post, mocked for whatever reason people will. I also know I don’t care. My dogs are cooler than you, and I know who really matters out there. Maybe the beginning of my post does tie in here. It’s about shedding the negative and focusing on positives, we all fall and our real friends make sure we find our way back up.