Sunday, November 15, 2009

...tO giVe iS beTTeR tHaN tO rEcEivE...

I loved reading books to my kids when they were little...especially in their beds at night. We read lots of the classic fairy tales and had several other favorites that we read often. One of those was "The Giving Tree". While I always admired the tree and her ability to "give" all she had for the boy she so loved...I also always felt sorry for her and related to her in some ways.

They say "it's better to give than to receive". I use to think that was so...and I still think it is many times. However, there are days...like today...when I just feel selfish. When my heart is empty and I'm in need of a little giving myself...a little reciprocation. When I love someone, I love them with everything that I am and I want them to know that. I tell them...often. I'm affectionate. I leave notes. I give gifts. I try my best to be thoughtful and caring. I get a lot of pleasure out of doing these things for the people I love. I've often said that I don't need the same in return...that giving love and seeing the people I love happy, is enough for me. Lately, I'm not so sure about that.

Growing up, there were many times I felt unloved. I wasn't close to my Mom. I knew she loved me, but I always felt like she didn't like me from the time I was small. My Mom never taught me to take up for myself...she never defended me if there was a problem at school. I always felt like I wasn't allowed to say "no"...that people would not like me if I did. She always told me to just take it...to not cause a stir or "rock the boat"...to keep my mouth shut and suffer in silence. Even when something very terrible happened to me, she did not defend me. She allowed me to be hurt in ways that no child should suffer. I have forgiven her and have a relationship with her, but the scars are still there.

I want to feel sorry for myself, but what I realized this morning as I am struggling with disappointment, is that in many ways...I have created this. I set up my relationships this way. I give and don't demand anything in return...at least not in the beginning. I give myself away. It's almost as if I don't feel worthy of what it is that I crave. Then over time...after I have trained people to take from me...I am left feeling empty and miserable. The emptiness and sadness leads to anger and I say things to hurt the very people that I love the most. I push the people away that I need to be the closest to me. I get angry with other people for things that I, myself have created...for my own lack of self respect.

I don't know if it's stupidity or fear or if I am somehow punishing myself...but whatever it is...it has to stop. I have to respect myself before I can expect other people to respect me. I have to take responsibility for what I do and I have to exercise more patience. I have to teach people to treat me with love and respect...and I have to live worthy of that love...or I'll never truly be happy.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

...tHe bEsT woRsT tHinG tHaT eVEr hApPenEd tO mE...

It was the last day of my vacation. I put on my bikini...grabbed my ipod...and headed for the ocean barefoot...ready to take my last walk this summer on the beach. The wind was blowing my hair and the sun was really warm on my shoulders. Most people either come to the island or leave the island on Saturdays. We stayed an extra day, so it was a Sunday. Most people were spending their first day on the beach and I noticed the difference in the way it felt. There was an excitement in the air. It was the first time kids were digging in the sand...the first time umbrellas were being put up...beach toys looked new and clean...most people looked like they could use a tan. It felt good...but it was also a bittersweet moment. While everyone was so happy and excited...I was feeling regret over the fact that my week...my time...was gone.

I was walking along with the sand in my toes...music in my ears and the ocean washing over my feet every time the tide washed in. I was deep in thought when I caught a glimpse out of the corner of my eye. I turned to look and there were three men standing a little further in...the water was probably up to their knees. They were drinking beer...talking...staring at someone intently. I looked behind me...no one was there...checked both sides...still no one there...and then I realized that it was ME that they were staring at. When I looked back over...they were smiling and I smiled back as I continued to walk. One said, "Hey, how's it goin?" I turned my head their direction, smiled again, and said "Everything is great!"...never stopping. I heard one say to the other, "Damn! This is gonna be a GOOD week!" and I kind of laughed to myself.

I walked a little further...noticing people noticing me. It was strange. I stopped...and walked a little further out to stand for a minute or two. As I stood there, I thought about how very grateful I am to be the person that I have become. I am grateful to be in the best physical shape of my life. I feel and look better than I did at 25 (minus the wrinkles around my eyes). I am stronger than I have ever been...both physically and mentally. I grew up never liking who I was...never feeling pretty...never feeling good enough...never feeling like I was good at anything. I didn't like who I was...which was part of what led me to the place I was at my lowest...200 lbs...hating myself...sad...and hopeless.The journey I took over the year it took me to lose 70 lbs...the people that I met along the way...and the years that have come and gone since have changed me...in every way. I feel like the old me died and a new me was born. I am still haunted by the ghost of who I use to be from time to time. Some days I look in the mirror and I see the old me in my reflection, but I actually can say I like myself now. I will always struggle, but I want to learn to love myself and see myself as others do.

I watched the water and the pelicans diving for breakfast and thought back on the time when I let myself go and fell into such a dark place. I have so many painful memories of that time. I was thinking that in many ways, it was one of the worst things that happened to me...and then it occurred to me. Maybe that was not the worst thing that happened to me. I believe that in many ways it may have been the best thing that ever happened to me. I truly feel that in the past 7 years, I have become the person that I was always meant to be. I have grown and learned things about myself...knocked down walls and faced fears...made some of the best friends I've ever had...and learned what it is that I want to do with my life. At that moment, I came to the realization that gaining and losing the weight, was the best worst thing that ever happened to me. I turned to walk back towards our villa, but I no longer felt sad...I felt thankful...thankful for the time I had in my favorite place doing what I like with people I love...and thankful to be who I am...not by nature or the grace of God...but through my own efforts.

Friday, April 17, 2009

..."i carry your heart with me..."...


"i carry your heart with me" ~ E.E. Cummings

I once  wrote a post about trying to hold grains of sand in your hands...about how difficult that is.  The harder you grasp...the more quickly it seems to run through your fingers.  Such is the case with many things in life.  We want to hold on...to force things to remain the same...but we can't because life is about change...about moving forward.  

I have had people come into my life that have forever changed it.  One person always comes to mind.  I truly consider him to be one of the best friends I have ever had...my "non romantic soulmate".  He's gone now.  He went from being the person I talked to...confided in...learned from on a daily basis...to being gone.  We still talk on the phone every few months, but our once daily texts are distant memories and our e-mails are few and far between.  It's funny how you can meet a person and feel like your souls are connected...like you have always known each other or that you are meant to know each other.  Sometimes, it's the most unlikely of people that this happens with.

You would think that I would forget...move on.  That was what I prayed for in the beginning.  I wanted the loneliness and the ache of missing my friend to go away.  It has been almost 2 years and the pain has gone from being an unbearable sting to a dull ache...one that is only apparent every now and then...only when I see or hear or remember something about him.

I love E.E. Cummings' poetry.  It is unusual and not always easily understandable.  They are no rhyming words.  There is not even much punctuation in them.  For some reason...his poetry speaks to me.  My favorite poem is "i carry your heart with me".  It is probably his most famous.  It's rainy and dark and for some reason, I felt compelled to get out my book of E.E. Cummings' poetry and look at it.  I always go to the back of the book and read my favorite first and then I go forward one at a time.  It's a strange habit, but I AM a creature of habit so I always do it the same way.

When I read this poem today, I looked up and saw a picture of me and my friend, W, running a 5K together.  I looked at the incredible smile on his face that was captured in that moment...as he ran beside me...and I thought of him.  I wondered what he's doing...far away...I wondered if he ever thinks about me.  It sounds silly but I feel like the pain in my heart is because there is a piece missing...a piece that he will always have.  My heart has healed, but there is still a scar.  I guess it will always be a little tender.  I wondered if he feels the same missing piece that I feel...because in all honesty...I do feel as though I do carry a piece of his heart with me.

I'm able to bear the pain, because he taught me to.  He taught me to push past my self imposed limitations and to stop being afraid.  Sometimes I feel like I was reborn when I met him...he helped me find my true self...the one that had been buried and hidden.  He made me strong...he prepared me to live without him...and so while I still wish he were here...I move forward...and I remind myself that a piece of him is always right here with me...in my heart.

My hope is that anyone who reads this...that may be sad...or missing someone...or feeling that dull ache in their heart...will realize this too.  Distance or death or circumstances may separate us...but we always carry a piece of those we care about with us.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

..."cUss mOnKeY"...

I've been sick and today I finally feel good. I usually keep goin when I'm sick, but I had a couple of days that I felt really bad...so bad that I couldn't keep going like I wanted to. I spent a lot of time alone in bed..just me and my thoughts and worries and just over all crazy musings on life in general. I went to put my glass of water on the coaster that is on my nightstand during one of those days and noticed a post it note that my son had stuck there. It said, "I love you, Mom. You are the best Mom ever!" Of course I thought it was incredibly sweet, but it also got me thinkin about what makes a "good Mom".

I'm different than a lot of Moms I know. We eat out a lot. I'm almost ALWAYS in heels. I don't generally sit at home baking cookies and working on PTA functions. I am off running and flipping tires...lifting weights...and doing other things that I enjoy and that I feel will make me an "improved version of myself".

I try hard to be a good, responsible Mom...I really do...and for the most part I succeed in the areas that really matter.  I love my kids..and they know it.  I tell them often and I am very affectionate towards them physically.  I taught them their ABCs and 123s...read them bedtime stories...still tuck them each in every night.  They always have food to eat...usually of the restaurant variety...but it's food nontheless...sorta...and they always have a clean house and clean clothes.  I can go on and on about birthday parties and family vacations and teaching them to be good moral people, but you get the point.  With that being said...I screw up too.  

I'm ALWAYS late...to everything...all the time.  There have been many times that I was having lunch with my kids at school and I come running around the corner 5 minutes late with a huge purse flopping on my shoulder...3 inch heels...blonde hair flyin...clutching a bag of McDonald's in my french tipped fingers only to see a little child...mine...standing in the cafeteria...waiting...eyes scanning...looking for me.  I always tell them, "I'm sorry.  I'm always late, but you KNOW I'll ALWAYS be here if I say I will be."  They smile and say "I know Mommy."  I'm also really forgetful which can lead to a bit of chaos at times...like when you forget a science project until a few days before it's due and you now have to try and find a way to create an project that can be tested and proven practically instantaneously.  If I'm getting ready and I need something...it's not uncommon for me to walk out naked to get it...I don't really know how my kids feel about this but it probably is a little strange...especially when I stop to have a conversation with one of them.  I'm a passionate person..eventhough in certain circumstances I may seem reserved.  I feel things to the extreme and I tend to forget that I'm not in a bubble and that there are in fact other people around...watching me.  When I laugh...sometimes it's loud...a "cackle" as my 13 yr old daughter calls it.  I do it in the movies...at restaurants...while reading birthday cards in Target.  I know it embarrasses my kids at times, but I remind them that I am their Mom and "that's my job!" and unfortunately for them...the embarrassment doesn't always stop there.  I've been known to demonstrate workout moves...dance...do impressions...whatever...all "in public".  

I guess one of my worst traits is that I cuss.  I don't know how it got started or who I got it from, but I affectionately refer to myself as a "Cuss Monkey".  I don't drop "f bombs" but there are cuss words that I just tend to use...a lot.  My oldest child is what I like to call a "straight arrow" so I know I shock her and probably disappoint her at times.  She's JUST LIKE her dad.  It's black and white.  It almost seems easier for them to do the "right thing"...the "appropriate thing" than it is to be human and screw up like the rest of us.  I live in multiple shades of grey.  My mouth gets me in trouble and sometimes...many times...I forget to filter what I say.  If I stub my toe...you WILL hear "S***!"

My husband doesn't cuss...opposites attract right?  It drives him crazy that I do.  I don't think it bothers him so much when a word flies out if I stub my toe...what he hates is when I use a cuss word as a descriptive word or even as a noun.  For example, let's take one of my most used words...B****.  I use it in place of woman...girl...wife.  When I was mad about an issue that I was having with a friend, I said to my husband..."He needs to get his b**** under control!"  If I'm leaving my sisters, I may say "Bye bye b****es!"  If I wanna pass someone going to slow on the highway, it's "Move b****!  Get out the way!  Get out the way! Get out the way, b****!"  I don't mean it in a disrespectful way...I even talk about myself this way.  Just yesterday, I was getting ready and when I slipped my favorite tight jeans on and my new sexy leopard heels on...I asked my husband "How do I look?"...he said, "You look great!"...I replied, "I am one hot b**** today!  Aren't I?!?"  I found it to be terribly funny...threw my head back and laughed ("cackled")  My husband didn't join in...instead he said, "You know I hate that word."

So, I do my best not to be completely inappropriate in front of my kids...and I TRY not to let the cuss words fly...but inevitably it happens from time to time.  My kids love me for who I am and for the most part are entertained by my craziness...but I do worry from time to time if being a "cuss monkey" makes me a bad Mom...because try as I might...I don't know that I'll ever get THIS monkey off my back.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

...caLLiNg pHoTo sHoP!...wE nEEd sOmE heLp hErE!...

So in my last post, I featured these SUPER cute Betsey Johnson swimsuits.  I never could find a good pic of the black and white one.  The model is so uber skinny and has such a long body, that it doesn't show just how sexy the suit is.  I REALLY want this suit...the problem is that the top is $118.00...yes...JUST the top...and the bottoms are $76.00.  That's mucho dinero for a freakin swimsuit!  So I decided to search online...

Unfortunately, when it's a "designer" item...it pretty much costs the same everywhere.  I came upon a site and clicked on the close up for the top.  I heard myself say "Ewwwww!!!!!"  I didn't notice it in the initial picture I posted last time...but close up...this girl needs a shave!  Click on the pic, and look at her armpit!

We live in a world where we are so warped because everywhere we look...there's airbrushed..."photo shopped"...visions of perfection!  Even knowing this...it's hard to ever feel good enough...at least for me...but seeing this picture today was a reminder that most of the time...when the "proofer" doesn't fall down on the job...it's all an illusion!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

...i tHinK i hAd a bReAktHroUgH!...

I write about it ALL the time (especially on my other blog)...I've written about how I struggle to see the same reflection in the mirror that others see...about how I never feel like I look good enough. Needless to say, "swimsuit weather" gets me a little nervous. I start to worry about how I'll look on the beach and I pick myself apart and expect perfection. When people stare at the beach, I get really uncomfortable and anxious because I assume it's a BAD thing. Yep...can you say "issues"?

So anyway, today I was at the mall and these 2 bikinis caught my eye as I walked by...actually they didn't just catch my eye...they lassoed me and drug me over to them. They were so unusual...sooooo cute. I wanted to try them on but I was thinking, "Maybe this isn't such a good idea...what if they look 'bad' and then I'm all depressed and down on myself for the rest of the day?". Being the masochist that I am...I grabbed the 2 suits and went in to the fitting room.What happened next was really strange. I put one on...and I like it. I mean, I didn't JUST like the suit...I liked ME IN the suit! Hmmm....musta been a fluke or somethin...I put the other one on...that happened to be yellow...and was thinkin..."WOW! I look good!"...to borrow a phrase from stylist extraordinaire Rachel Zoe...I looked "BANANAS!" (that's a really good thing)




I liked THIS top with the bottoms below (wasn't feelin a skirt!Okay so the point of all this is NOT to brag or tell everyone how good I looked. It's not to prove that hard work pays off. It's to prove that maybe I can be cured of the way I've been towards myself in the past...okay and the present...maybe I CAN start to see myself the way everyone else does in the future. I think I had a little breakthrough today!

*and just for the record...I filled that suit out much better than that skinny minnie model on top! ;) 

Sunday, February 22, 2009

...aM i jUsT aN aCCeSSoRy?...

I love accessories.  I have 3 plaques that each have 4 hooks on them in my closet just for belts.  Brown belts with gold buckles...brown belts with silver buckles...animal print belts in both zebra and leopard spots...black belts with diamond studs...black belts with a plain silver buckle...fancy belts in differing colors...belts that go with everything...belts specific to one single outfit...I have a lot of belts.  It is the same with jewelry.  I love big chunky "cocktail" rings and I have tons of different colored bracelets and necklaces.  Some are practical...most are not.  And shoes...Let me just say that NOT including flip flops...I have well over 100 pairs.  Then there's all my purses...

I once had my brother who doubles as my "handyman" come over to hang long plaques with hooks on them all along the walls of my closet for my belts and purses.  Everytime I would hand him another one, he'd say, "Are you kidding me?!?  ANOTHER one?!?"  Then at one point he started calling me a "hooker"!  I was offended until I figured out that he was referring to all my hooks and not my platforms and stillettos...then I laughed!

Accessories are great.  They do so much.  Sometimes it's strictly utilitarian.  If our pants won't stay up, we put on a belt.  We put shoes on to protect our feet.  A purse carries important items we need to take with us.  Sometimes it all fluff.  I can't think of a single reason to wear half of the big, chunky cocktail rings I like to wear on my "pointer finger"...other than maybe in the place of brass knuckles if I come upon an attacker.  I will say that I NEVER go without accessories.  I have to have at the very least a cute belt and earrings.  The plainest outfit can be made "special" with the right jewelry and shoes.  I realize that I don't have to have accessories...they are not necessary...they are extra...the "icing on the cake".

The other day I was kinda feeling like an accessory.  I was feeling like I don't add any real substance or importance to anyone or anything in my life.  Sometimes I feel like everything that people like about me is all "fluff"...all glitter and rhinestones...nice...fun...pretty to look at...but not necessary or essential.  It started to really get me down...because I wallowed in those thoughts ...because I LET it get me down.  It effected many areas of my life.  It worried me.  I wondered..."What if I stop looking the way I do?"..."What if I stop always agreeing to help out when it's inconvenient?"..."Would people still love me?...like me?...need me around?"

The more I have thought about this...the more I have realized that I should not feel this way...I should not worry or feel ashamed of who I am.  So what if I'm not always serious...so what if I make mistakes...so what if I wear lipstick and cute clothes to the gym...so what if my appearance is what draws some people in.  I am still important...needed.  Sometimes my silly ways make hard times bearable.  My mistakes...they make me human...real...they make it easy for me to forgive others' mistakes.  My lipstick and tight pants prove that looks can be deceiving...that you don't have to look like a man to work hard and be strong.  Lastly, my appearance may draw some people in, but my heart is what keeps them close.  I may be an accessory at times...but I'm still important.  I am the belt that people need to keep their pants up...I just happen to have "rhinestones and leopard spots" too...and I actually think that's pretty cool.  I may not be ordinary...I may not always appear to be necessary at first glance...but I know in my heart that I am.  I may sparkle and shine...I may not match everything that I stand next to...but I am NOT just an accessory.  I am much more.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

...do iT...aLL tHe tiMe...

A bouquet of flowers on a random Tuesday...a love note under a pillow for no reason other than the sender really feels the words written...good dinner and pleasant conversation in a nice restaurant after a hectic day full of pressure...a compliment just because...expressing love at the moment that one is FEELING the emotion...these things are precious and sincere.  So why is it that we save these things for one day a year?  It seems like it becomes a chore and loses it's authenticity when we do so.

I'm not one to hate Valentine's Day.   Even when I was single and without a special someone and the day would roll around...I never hated it...but many people do.  I had a conversation with a man I was training at the gym on Friday when I was telling him about my plans for Valentine's Day with my husband.

HIM: "I hate Valentine's Day. After three years together, my fiance is finally getting used to me not doing anything..."

ME: "I know...I DO find it dumb that we have a day where we are all under pressure to give gifts nd shower each other with affirmations of our love. It almost doesn't seem authentic...like why do we have to do something every year on the same day...something that we should be doing..."

HIM: "...(interrupting) We should be doing it EVERY day!...not just once a year!"


After our conversation, I got to thinking about this.  I wondered, "Why is it that we feel the need to help those less fortunate at Christmas?  Why do we feel compelled to want to feed the homeless on Thanksgiving?  Why do we give gifts and affirm our love on Valentine's Day?  Why do holidays bring out the desire to do things that we should already be doing?  Why is it human nature to be stingy with compliments?  Why can't we just say it?  do it?  Why can't we train ourselves to be more giving in every way...all the time?"

Monday, February 9, 2009

...sOmEtHiN diFFeReNt aBoUt yOu...

I am one of six children...two boys and four girls. We don't have the MOST dysfunctional family...but there are some..."issues" from time to time. We have a little of everything between all of us...and we all definitely fall into roles. We have the crazy one (HER description of herself, not mine)...the hyper, funny one...the perfect one...the nice, quiet one that never asks for anything...the wild child...and the brainiac baby. Now obviously there's a lot more to each of us than just those brief descriptions...but I do think that it is so interesting how we tend to behave according to what is expected of us.

I'm the "perfect one" in that list from above...except I'm not really perfect...no where near in fact.  I'm late all the time...I speak before I think...I worry too much...I eat too much sugar...etc etc etc...but I am married and have been for a long time.  I have 3 beautiful, smart kids.  My husband is successful...a partner at an investment fund.  I live in a big nice house, and I never ask for anything from anyone.  I almost always have my makeup just so...my hair styled...matching jewelry... and nice clothes...including some sort of high heel and tight jeans.  I think really it's that I'm the most predictable...I have the most "traditional", conservative life. 

I guess I had forgotten just how much my friends and family have come to expect certain things from me...even down to the way I dress.  I went to my parents' house for our weekly Sunday dinner a few weeks ago.  As I stood by the dining room table preparing my kids plates, my two brothers were watching me (1 older and 1 younger).  A funny conversation ensued.

OLDER BRO:  "Hey C! (younger bro)  Do you notice something different about MC?"

YOUNGER BRO: (generally very quiet)  "Ummm...no...not really."

OLDER BRO:  "Look at her! There's something really different...unusual today..."

YOUNGER BRO:  blank stare

ME: (becoming paranoid)  "What?!?!  Y'all better not be makin fun of me!  Seriously!  Do I look weird?"

OLDER BRO:  "No..." (mischievous smile)  "Look at her C! 

YOUNGER BRO:  "I don't know....what?"

OLDER BRO:  "She's wearing loose pants!"

We all burst into laughter because it really is strange.  I just so happened to be wearing some "boyfriend style" loose jeans instead of my normal tight jeans.  I never wear them but I was wanting to be comfy and I just threw them on since we were just going to my Mom and Dad's house.  Everyone teases me about my tight pants...the ones I wear to the gym...my jeans...whatever...but that's not really the point of this...it's really more of an illustration of a deeper concept.I just find it so interesting how we label and categorize people.  We want them to look and behave in a certain way...the way we know them.  It makes change difficult.  I think that's why it's hard for us to be happy for people when they lose weight or get a better job or get a makeover or anything that changes the way a person looks or feels about themselves.  I think it scares us.  We become comfortable with the persona we create for each person.  I also think that it causes us to step back and take a look at ourselves and wonder if there are things that we don't like about ourselves that we could improve...or even things that we hide because we are afraid how people will react if they know who we really are.

I'm stepping back...and I'm gonna look long and hard at the people I love in my life.  I'm gonna take the time to see past the labels and roles they play and find more.  Labels are just sticky distractions that keep us from seeing what's behind them.  I'm gonna start peelin em off of others and myself.  Who knows what I'll find...

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

...aDriFt aT sEa...

"How can a few simple lines...read aloud...in a public place...make me want to cry?  How can a person come into my life for such a short time and and leave such a lasting impression?  How can some of the people that I love so much...hurt me so bad?  How can I be so strong...yet so fragile?  How can I laugh on the outside when I'm sobbing on the inside?  How can I believe so deeply...and still have questions?"  

I have started about five different posts over the past week.  I have been unable to complete a single one.  I feel adrift at sea.  I cannot seem to convey the way I feel like I usually can.  I am distracted.  I feel blank...conflicted.  I'm not quite sure what the point of all this is, but these are the thoughts in my head that weigh heavy on my heart today.  I sometimes wonder if I am alone...I wonder, "Do other people have the kinds of thoughts I am having?".

I know I will be okay.  I wanna cry when I read certain words because those words touch my heart.  My life has been touched because I broke down walls and trusted.  I can be hurt because I have a heart...because I care.  I can be both strong and fragile because I'm working everyday to face my fears and become the strong person I want to be.  I laugh on the outside when I am sad on the inside because I WANT to be happy in spite of any struggles or hurt that I may encounter.  I can believe and question because that is what life is about.  I may feel adrift and conflicted...but I will be okay and I will find my way back to shore. 

Thursday, January 29, 2009

a "MILF"?!?...wHo mE?...

I guess it was about 4 years ago...  I was walking through the mall with my 3 yr old on my hip and my 5 and 8 yr old trailing behind me with my Nanny.  It was crowded.  In fact, if I remember correctly, it was Christmas time.  As we walked past the food court, I noticed some young college aged guys staring, but I paid no attention until my Nanny looked at me and said, "OH MY GOSH!  Did you hear what those guys said about you?!?"  I, said, "No!  What?!?"  She made a funny face..."I can't tell you in front of the kids!  I'll tell you later."  My heart sank.  I assumed the worst.  I was convinced that they were making fun of me...that something was terribly wrong with me.  I couldn't stop thinking about it.

We got to the car and my Nanny helped get the kids in and then came around to the back where I was loading shopping bags.  In a loud whisper she said, "Those guys were calling you a MILF!!!"  I guess I had a really puzzled look on my face...and in my head I was thinking.."OMG!  What does that mean?  Is MILF anything like FUGLY?  Did those guys think I'm ugly...or gross?  What the hell is a MILF?"  She giggled and asked, "Did you ever see American Pie?"  I replied, "No, I never had ANY desire to watch it.  Why?"  "Because!" she said, "Then you would know what MILF means!"  Exasperated and desperate to know, I asked..."What on earth is a MILF?!?!"  She looked a little uncomfortable and said, "A Mom I'd like toooo...."  STILL puzzled..."Huh?"  "You know, A Mom I'd like to 'F'!!!"  A slight pause and then it finally penetrated..."Oh! Oh..."  That was the first time I ever heard that expression...and while I KNEW I should be offended...disgusted...there was a tiny part of me that liked it.

So today...I went to lunch with my Sis at a restaurant that we frequent.  There's the sweetest, most hilarious gay waiter there.  He LOVES my sister.  When we got there, we requested his section and the hostess showed us to our booth.  Once I sat my purse down, I went to the restroom to wash the chalk off my hands from the gym.  As I headed back to the table, our waiter met me and gave me a big hug.  During the hug, he said "ALL the guys that work here have been running up to me asking 'Who's the MILF'?  My response..."WHO?  ME?!?!"  He laughed, "Yeah...YOU girl!"  It was as shocking today as it was years ago, but it really got funny when my sister told me to go over there and show our "friend" the tank (pictured below) I was wearing under my jacket. Me...being the oblivious idiot that I am...said "Ok."  I walked over to him and said, "So, I'm supposed to show you my tank, huh?"  He smiled..."Yeah, your sister told me about it!"  I'm not thinking a thing about lifting up my pullover to show what is written across my boobs, because after all...he IS gay.  What I didn't pay attention to, is the fact that he was NOT alone...there were lots of other waiters over there, when I showed off my...ummmm...shirt.  They all loved it...needless to say and it wasn't until our waiter came over laughing that I realized what I had done.  Through his laughter he said, "All those guys just walked up to me and said 'THANK YOU'!!!!"  Gasp!  "Oh my!  I didn't even think about that!"

Maybe it was yet another "blonde moment"...maybe it's that I just never can grasp the fact that I would be categorized as a MILF.  Either way...I'm still scratching my head...asking, "A MILF?!?  Who?  ME?!?"

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

..aN iNaUgURaL fUnnY...

Today is a historic day...not one that I have personally looked forward to...but one that I recognize as important nonetheless. I was gone all day and missed seeing any of the coverage of the inauguration on T.V. It seemed like I was going nonstop until I finally finished up at the gym and headed home around 6pm. I had worked out really hard and I was worn out. Once I got in my car to drive home, I ran through all the channels that I have set on XM radio. I couldn't find anything I wanted to hear so I pushed the AM/FM button to see what I could find on "regular" radio. The first station I listened to was a rock station and there was a commercial talking about what an important day this is and then the announcer says, "And now...a word from our former President!''. The next voice I heard was familiar...but it did not belong to President Bush. It belonged to Will Ferrell pretending to be President Bush giving a going away speech...and this is part of what he said,
"Well, Amerr-ca! I'm here to say...I'm leavin the White House and I'm goin to go tear Dallas a new party hole!...WOOO!  I'm gone...but don't worry!...that Tiger Woods guy is takin over!"
I laughed sooo hard...outloud...all by myself in my car...and after a loooong day that included a hair appt...lunch with my sister...a speeding ticket...some shopping...and a tough workout...I needed that laugh!  Thanks Will Ferrell for brightening my day with your humor!  Good luck President Obama!  I hope you deliver everything that you say you will...because if you don't...I'm afraid we are in trouble...

Friday, January 16, 2009

...MY "cOnFeSSioNs"...

Shopper...customer...client...buyer...browser...patron... consumer...all different words...with the same meaning..."one who visits stores in search of merchandise or bargains". I am all of these things. I LOVE to shop. I go through periods of time where it almost seems...compulsive...and then there have been a few periods of time where I hardly shopped at all. In fact, I remember calling my friend W at one point and asking "WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?!? I DON'T EVEN WANT TO SHOP THESE DAYS!!!" As you can probably guess...the "compulsive shopper" is probably more of the "NORM" for me than the latter.

I have always been the type to look for bargains...even when I didn't NEED to financially. I would get such a rush out of buying a $118.00 shirt for $30.00 on clearance...and buying DESIGNER jeans...especially at FULL PRICE...was unthinkable to me...until I bought my first pair of Seven For All Mankind jeans with my sis. I asked for more and my husband bought me two more pair at $200.00 a piece for Christmas. So, one pair didn't fit right and I had to go back to try another size...they ordered me a size and in the end, I realized that apparently these jeans were cut differently than ALL THE OTHER Seven For All Mankind jeans and returned them and decided to look for another brand. True Religion jeans were too low and skinny and the Rock and Republic jeans I tried on are made for 6 foot tall models..not girls with a nice round butt and athletic thighs. I mean for $300.00...they should make my butt look better than ever instead of "smooshing" it flat.

I was at the mall returning these ill fitting jeans and shopping for my daughter's 13th b-day presents. I bought her the Ed Hardy tennis shoes she wanted and then decided to stop into The Buckle to check out their Ed Hardy tees. I saw ALL these FABULOUS jeans and I was sucked in! The super cute, edgy sales guy with the torn up jeans, the cool Affliction t shirt, and the "million dollar smile" bee-lined for me as soon as I walked in. I don't know if he could smell my weakness or if he was just really over zealous but he was RIGHT THERE. Our conversation was like this...

SALES GUY: HEY...(leaning back into a "swaggar" of a pose"...looking me up and down but not in a really obvious way)...LOOKIN FOR SOME JEANS?

ME: UH, YEAH...BUT I'M WONDERING DO THESE JEANS (holding up a pair I like) HAVE ANY STRETCH IN THEM...

SALES GUY: I THINK SO...MOST OF OUR JEANS DO...ARE YOU WANTING STRETCH?

ME: I NEED STRETCH OR I WON'T BE ABLE TO GET THEM OVER MY THIGHS. MY THIGHS ARE ATHLETIC AND BIG COMPARED TO MY WAIST.

SALES GUY: I TELL YOU WHAT...LET ME PICK SOME STUFF OUT FOR YOU...AND WE'LL SEE HOW YOU DO (charming smile)...WHAT SIZE DO YOU WEAR?

ME: 27...SOMETIMES 28 IF THEY RUN SMALL...

SALES GUY:  (turns to walk away and looks over his shoulder and asks...) DO YOU HAVE ANY "SINFUL" STUFF?

ME:  I BEG YOUR PARDON? (really "dumb blonde" look in my eye I'm sure)

SALES GUY:  THE BRAND..."SINFUL"...

ME:  OHHHH...NO.

He comes back with like 10 pair of expensive, SUPER CUTE jeans and 5 tshirts and I started trying them on.  Now there were NO MIRRORS in the dressing room, so I had to walk out to look in the mirror...feeling ON DISPLAY.  He was right there to give his opinion.  The tees he brought originally fit my middle fine but were VERY tight across the chest.  Hmmm...what a strange coincidence!  I asked him to get me some Mediums and he told me my jeans looked good...and I have to say...my butt WAS lookin pretty darn good if I do say so myself...ESPECIALLY for a woman that will be 40 this year!  I kept tryin and found some really cute stuff, but at $150.00 and $200.00 EACH...it's not like I could just grab everything I liked.  I narrowed it down to 1 "Sinful" tee and 3 pairs of jeans.  I get to the counter and the conversation continued...

ME:  "WELL, I GUESS I'LL TAKE THIS PAIR OF JEANS ($150.00) AND WAIT ON THE OTHER 2...AND I'LL GET THIS 1 TSHIRT FOR ME AND THIS ONE FOR MY DAUGHTER."

SALES GUY:  YOU SURE YOU DON'T WANT THESE OTHER TWO PAIRS OF JEANS???

ME:  OH, I WANT EM, BUT I'LL HAVE TO PICK EM UP LATER...I MEAN THAT'S 350.00 WORTH OF JEANS THERE!

SALES GUY:  PUT EM ON LAYAWAY IF YOU DON'T WANNA SPEND THAT MUCH RIGHT NOW.

ME:  LAYAWAY?!?  NO...I'M NOT A LAYAWAY KINDA GAL...(grimace...smile)

SALES GUY: (smile)  YOU CAN ALWAYS CANCEL IT...AND WE DON'T ALWAYS HAVE THESE STYLES...

ME:  FINE!

I walked out with hundreds of dollars of merchandise and hundreds more on LAYAWAY!  What the?!?!  I felt like I had just been involved in a Hit N Run accident.  I wasn't gonna go crazy..I just wanted 1 pair of jeans and a tee.  I think I even muttered, "What just happened?" as I walked out...but I KNEW..the same thing that ALWAYS happens.
So as usual..I tried to psycho analyze my decisions as I drove home drinking my yummy Sugar Free Strawberry/Vanilla Italian soda from Nordstrom.  Why do I go through these shopping cycles?  Am I happier in my life when I'm in the "NOT shopping so much" cycle?  When I compulsively shop am I trying to fill a proverbial "hole"?  Or am I just a spoiled brat?  Hmmmm...I think it may be a little of all of that.  I don't know...all I do know, is that I do LOVE to shop and I gotta STOP with the jeans!  I need to be more in control!  Sometimes, I think the ONLY way for me to be in control is to avoid stores altogether, because try as I might to "be good"...I AM A SHOP-A-HOLIC!
*BTW...just a little fashion "tid-bit"...the brand of jeans called Rock Revival that I bought at The Buckle...are actually made by Rock and Republic...the ONLY difference (besides actually being cuter in my opinion) is that they are cut for "more normal" people and instead of $300.00...they are $148.00.  So, if you like Rock and Republic jeans, check out Rock Revival jeans!

Monday, January 12, 2009

...aCt yO aGe mAmA...nOt yO sHoE siZe...


"ACT YOUR AGE!"  It's an expression that we've ALL heard...maybe even said at one time or another.  We all know what it means...or do we really???  Not too long ago, my husband and I got into a fight.  I can't remember what it was about...nothing really important...but I do remember that it was over a difference of opinion concerning SOMETHING that I was doing that he found inappropriate.  I remember him looking at me before he walked out of our room with disgust and saying "Why don't you just ACT YOUR AGE for once?!?!"   I had no response, but I remember being angry and thinking..."Act my age??? What the hell does that MEAN anyways?!?"

You see...here's the thing...you could not find 2 more different people than me and my husband, P, at times.    We don't fight too much...we usually get along just fine...and we do love each other...but sometimes I feel like a child...a bad, rebellious child.  I'm a good person.  I do the right thing...but I have a wild streak I guess you could say.  P NEVER swears.  I'm sorry...but I find it necessary to use certain words to get my point across...MANY have 4 letters.  And if I stub my toe...I will most likely scream "S***!"  
He hates that about me.  I love music...and I love all kinds...especially LOUD, hard, angry music.  I also enjoy the occasional hip-hop song.  I'm careful about what I play in front of my kids, but alone...anything goes.  P believes that if a song has the "F bomb" (as he "affectionately refers to it) in it or if a CD says "explicit content"...it should be OFF-LIMITS.  I am much more tolerant.  I like to look sexy...he is uber conservative.  I always feel like I am consciously "toning myself down" for him.  I could go on and on, but you get the point and it makes sense that he would say something to me like "ACT YOUR AGE!".

I know that it was supposed to be an insult...but in the end...TO ME...it wasn't.  I mean what does it mean to "act your age" anyway?  Does it mean that you have to be serious and uptight?  Does it mean that you have to look and behave like a prude?  Does it mean sitting at home and going to bed early?  Does it mean refraining from loud laughter and being offended when the boys at the gym make jokes or a rapper sings about big butts?  I mean really...what does it MEAN to "ACT MY AGE"?  How is a 39 yr old SUPPOSED to act?

I've decided that the answer doesn't matter.  It doesn't matter because I am who I am.  So what if I swear...or laugh too loud sometimes...or listen to music marked explicit...or wanna look sexy...  Maybe I don't want to act my age!

Friday, January 9, 2009

…woRk oUt “tOuReTTes”…

I love to workout alongside the guys at my gym. I love it, because they push me without saying a word. I run faster…I go harder and longer…I do one more rep without stopping…all because I want to beat them. This is funny...because the few guys I am specifically trying to beat...are pretty strong guys…at least 10 yrs younger than me…all men…all ex-military. I can’t beat them usually…but still…I try and I’ll NEVER stop trying.

Sometimes…almost EVERY time…I am in serious pain during a workout as I race against the boys and the stopwatch. Consequently, I have to fight my way through most workouts. The funny part…the annoying part…is how uncontrollably loud I am. I GRUNT…and I MOAN…and I YELL. I’ve often referred to myself as “the Monica Seles of Crossfit”. I even shout out profanities every now and then. I make all sorts of crazy noise! No one ever says a word, but I’m sure they think I’m a freak. The weird part is that it all JUST happens. It just flies out of my mouth without any thought…like I can’t control it. I realized today...when I was in there working out alone...and I STILL grunted and yelled...that it’s almost like I have Tourettes Syndrome…except it’s ONLY when I workout and it’s ONLY verbal…no tics…yet. It’s like I have “Workout Tourettes” and I wonder if I’ll ever be “cured”. Maybe one day I will learn to control it…but until then…I guess my guy friends will have to put up with me and my ridiculous noises in the gym. Sorry boys.


I found this video and thought it was hilarious! Good thing I don't go to Planet Fitness! I might be kicked out!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

...nO nEEd fOr aLcoHoL wiTh a bRaiN LiKe miNe...

My two sisters and I had plans to hang out Saturday Night…nothing too crazy…just dinner and some laughs. I spend time on the weekends with one of my sisters, S, quite often…I see the other, K, for lunch a couple of times a week, but we don't ever get together on the weekends. I was excited because it is so unusual for the three of us to get together.

We weren't sure where to go, but in the end S and I drove out to meet K at Hooters because she had decided to go there with her roommate (he's a guy!) and if we didn't, we wouldn't get to hang with her. My thought has always been…"We are chicks…so why go to Hooters?"..but really the point was to be with my sisters…so I picked Sarah up and headed to Hoots to meet K.

We walked in and K introduced us to all her friends (the"regulars" there) and all "the girls" (waitresses). So, here's the thing…the beer and Margaritas…were flowin at the table we were at…except for my spot. I was drinking Diet Coke. So you may think…how boring. You may think that I was quiet while everyone else had fun and whooped it up. WRONG!

I told jokes and stories and we all laughed until I was literally in tears a few times. K's friend Sal got up to go to the bathroom and his phone started ringing…his ringtone is the song "Right Now (Na Na Na)" by Akon. I have no clue what came over me as I was sittin on that stool…but when it went off I started singing and dancing on my stool (while still sitting of course…I'm not THAT crazy). When I did, my two sisters immediately joined in. After that, everytime Sal's phone went off…whether we were in mid conversation or what…we all stopped and sang and danced. Sal was lovin it..in fact, I was startin to think he might be callin himself with the other guy's phone under the table. It sure was mysterious how once that went down…his once quiet phone was ringin almost continually. The other hilarious thing was that my sister…who WAS drinking…a lot…ripped my pump off to show everyone that I could use the heels as a weapon…of course I played along with the demonstration..showing some kicks, etc.

K's friends had been at the table behind us, but once they left, some creepy guy came in and sat there. He kept trying to fight the urge to get involved and stare, but he couldn't help it. He enjoyed every minute of our antics while enjoying a 3 course meal...yes I said a 3 course meal...salad, stinky fish, & dessert...weird, I know. Cmon! It's Hooters dude...eat some wings or a burger! Anywho...he kept talking to himself and everytime he did, my sister, S would say, "Oh no! He's calling "the mother ship" to come pick him up!" It was makin me laugh so hard. As if all this wasn't enough, my sister S asks about the hula hoops hangin up. K said something about birthdays or something and then next thing I know, she's got one of the waitresses hula hoping and she's tryin, but it's NOT happenin. I just so happened to mention prior that I am really good at hula hoping…they remembered and started buggin me to do it. I resisted for a while. Finally...after some coaxing from a few people...I got up…thinking "Can I really do this?...in some seriously high heels?...in front of everyone?" Well, I STILL got it, because I had NO problem! I had that baby goin! I went to hang it back up and my sisters were like "I can't believe you did it!" I said my favorite line from "My Best Friend's Wedding"…"OH, I GOT MOVES YOU'VE NEVER SEEN!" That busted everyone up into hysterical laughter again! Even the policeman in there was laughin. Then K got me to show her friends at our table, Dave and Sal my "booty poppin move" that I always get tricked into showing people. It starts with the whole "What's the first thing you do on a squat?" and I say "You pop your butt back like you're closing a car door!" and then I CAN'T help myself…I demonstrate the move…"Like this! Pop…pop…pop…pop!"

I had a great time! It's funny because I don't go out that much…because I don't drink…but when I do…I'm as crazy or crazier than the folks that ARE drinking!...but in a good way…I am in control of what I do. Besides, I realized that with a brain like mine…there's no need for alcohol. My sisters even joked about it…sayin if I did I woulda been up on the "Texas shaped table" singin "Deep in the Heart of Texas" or something! Ha ha! Can you even imagine? The thought scares me!