Thursday, July 26, 2012

I'm So Out of Practice That This Post Has No Title

They say the third time's the charm. I guess we'll find out. Because, after a bit over a year hiatus, I have decided to come back to blogging. When I stopped, I didn't think it would be forever, it would just be until I fixed some things. Well, I fixed those things, and more things needed fixing. And I was going to come back, only, I was happy. Really happy. And the idea of coming back? I was burnt out. I realized that the blog had created a harpy that pretty much capitalized on everything negative.

That's not who I am. So I decided to take a break. A crappy experience at my fourth BlogHer made the decision easy. I don't belong there any longer. And the fact that I wasn't missed and felt a bit sorry for myself made it easy to stay away. Friendships changed, and passed away, writing evolved and seasons changed. I am a different person from when I started. So if I came back to blogging, I had to decide, for whom did I want to write?

As my children grow, so does their need for privacy. The stories aren't mine to tell anymore; they belong to their owners.My children have a presence on the Internet, I have to be respectful of their boundaries as much as possible. This left me with a conundrum: what do I have left to say, if not about them? I have my own stories, it's true. I just had to find them again.

When I started this blog six years ago, we were deep in the throes of autism in our house. The Autism Monster had eaten my children and I first started blogging to make sense of it all. Times change. It wasn't the autism that was me. I have more patience, and I have more tolerance, I think. I missed writing, but I didn't miss who I was becoming through the blog scene. I needed some distance.

I started writing to write. I was never really comfortable with what this medium has become. I don't like selling my soul for products. I am not a shill. And maybe others can get free stuff and not be influenced in their reviews. I could not. Or at least, I was never sure if I could or not. So I decided to just...stop. I dropped all forms of social media for a long time. I stopped writing everywhere.

While I was gone, I thought hard about what I wanted this space to be. And I decided I am not just going to come here and complain. If I need to vent, I will find

a therapist.

I have been there, and done that, and she released me because she decided that under the circumstances, I was doing damn well. So. What I want this space to be is a dynamic, growing changing life record, of sorts. Many things have changed, as you will come to see, if you follow along. Two graduations, some braces, a joy found, a childhood lost...these are the stories. Would you like to follow along? Come back, grab a cup of tea, curl up with your cat, or a comfy pillow, and we'll begin. Again.

Thursday, September 08, 2011

How to get waited on hand and "foot"

My father always said I couldn't walk and chew gum at the same time. I would have argued with him, but I was too busy falling on my face. Despite my lack of coordination, I have been pretty lucky. I have only ever broken three bones in my lifetime. The first time I broke a bone, I was in my early twenties; it was my ankle. I was taking the stairs two at a time at work, and rolled my ankle, landing on it, from one step to the ground floor. I broke my foot in three places. (My friends' response to that? "Don't go there, anymore!" Get it? Yeah, it wasn't that funny then, either). After that, over the years, I have broken my little toe, twice. The first time, I hit my son's Rescue Heroes fire truck. The second time, I slammed my toe into the Lego table, and I went one way, the toe went the other. Let me just say: "OW."

Honestly, though, when I twisted my ankle this weekend by taking a wrong step from the sidewalk into the flower bed, it really, really hurt. I have spent the last few days icing it and finally went to the doctor on Tuesday because I feared I had broken my foot. Thankfully, I managed to save the iPad from plummeting to the cement in what would have been a certain death. The fall I took instead was a small price to pay, but I paid dearly. The verdict: severe ankle sprain. I actually pulled some tendons. The doctor gave me a brace and I am supposed to gradually start bearing weight on it. But for now, I am mostly confined to the couch with my foot up while everyone else around me is a whirling dervish trying to accomplish what is day-to-day routine for me: cleaning, cooking, taking care of pets, driving kids where they need to go... You would think I am enjoying this, but I can't. I don't do well being waited upon. And I really don't do well watching other people work and not accomplish things to my standards. So I am constantly getting up to do things, and my family is constantly making me sit on the couch again. Very frustrating.

When I do venture off the couch, it's slow going. I can't walk fast at all, I sort of shuffle around, dragging my bad ankle behind me. Right now, I am looking at a least a few weeks of the "zombie shuffle." So much fun. I sit on the couch, and the cat lies down on the blanket next to me. With the walking stick and the cat I am one shark tank away from being a super-villain, I suppose. I would also like a trap door, please.

Still, all is not lost. At least I match my toenails, now. It's something.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

What Not to Do With Your Underwear

I walked into my hotel room and stopped short. The maid had been there.. The wastebasket had been emptied, the sink was wiped down and the beds had been made. Housekeeping had made another discovery, as well. How embarrassing. My turquoise boy-cut Hanes underwear were on top of my pillow, staring at me.

I was in town for the womens' blogging convention, Blogher. Leaving my hotel room bright and early, I was rushing to get to breakfast and then my next session. That's how Blogher is..there is always somewhere to be, and always five minutes ago. Or maybe that's just me.

I have a terrible habit of leaving my underwear under my pillow at home. My giant dog, who can put her head upon my higher-than-normal bed, has a tendency to steal underwear that are left at the foot of the bed at night. After a few mornings of waking up to find my unmentionables had become a snack, I took aversive action. Into the hamper with those skivvies. She found them there, too. Yum yum. Munch, munch, munch, she said. That's when my underwear ended up under my pillow when I sleep.

So here I was, at the Marriott, 5-star resort, and the housekeeper thinks I am

1) a pig.
2) so drunk I either
A) forgot where I put my underwear
B) got lucky and was so carried away I didn't think about where my underwear were

Unfortunately, the truth is a lot more boring. I didn't get drunk. I certainly didn't have sex with anyone. I simply went on auto-pilot without thinking. It's like when you drive the kids to school everyday and then forget that it's a weekend and you are going to the grocery store and you drive there only you end up halfway to school? Again, just me?

It seems silly, I won't ever see the housekeeping staff again. But I realize...I am so boring. I can't help wishing I had at least had sexier, more interesting underwear. Something hot pink, lacy, racy and thongy? I have those, I just didn't wear them. When you get to be my age, sometimes comfort wins over sex appeal. And since I knew no one would be seeing my underwear but me, I didn't really worry about it. (What comes to mind is the age-old momism, "Did you put on clean underwear? What if you get in an accident??") Instead, the maid not only saw my underwear, she had to touch them.

When I left the hotel room, I cleaned up after myself, picking up trash, making my bed, rinsing out the sink. I checked under the pillow twice. And I left a big tip.

My check-in tip on foursquare: "Check under your pillow so you find your underwear before the maid does," Social media for the win. Don't say you haven't been warned.

Monday, August 08, 2011

My Blogher Recap: The Third Time was the Charm, Four Balls, That's a Walk

This is not the popular opinion, and I feel the need to write a disclaimer. This is my fourth Blogher, and it has treated me well, for the most part, but this year the star didn't shine nearly as brightly as it has in the past..

Back from BlogHer and there is one word that comes to mind for my experience: disconnected. I know, sounds like I had an awful time, but that's not true. What is true is that there were a lot of people at BlogHer, which, at times made it very difficult to find my people. It is true that the first night I came this-close to heading back to my room after cruising The People's Party, saying hi to the scant number of people I recognized, and a few I didn't. Then, feeling like a fish out of water, I flopped on to a nearby bench,where I had a great conversation with someone I had never met. Later I went back to the party, and found people I knew. And it was good.

It's true I spent sessions mostly alone or with new people. It's true that I ate lunch, again, mostly by myself, or with new people. I headed into parties and saw a sea of unfamiliar faces, all of whom were already attached. My wing-woman friends didn't make it this year, so I was on my own to find companionship.. It proved to be a challenge. Because, really, how long can you hang out in a cocktail circle of people you know in real life (but better online) without seeming like some sort of creepy stalkerish person? I can tell you. Exactly ten minutes. Beep. Time to find a new circle. Ever wonder how you can be lonely in a sea of 3000? I do. Everyone is very friendly; but where are