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24 Hour Protection

Since I was only 12 hours into my new 24 hour bra, I decided to stay at the party a little later than I normally would. It was a "pool" party. Reads, "bring your bathing suit". What I'd like to know is this, who that really knows me would even bother to include that on MY invite? I mean, do they think that I am going come prancing in with my new albeit several months old, Bahamian used bathing suit? Who are they kidding? That whole, "Look 10 pounds thinner deal went down the drain after my third Bahama Mama". For all of you that are planning one of these parties and IF I am on the invite, I just wanna say, no. OK, NO. So when I arrive, don't slip your skinny self up next to me in front of all your party goers and say, "Oh, my gosh, you didn't know it was a pool partee"? "OMG, well maybe we have a suit laying around here, left over from when my next door neighbor's Grammy came to visit, yeah, she was about your size". It is just so not gonna happen. I mean, I need weeks to months to mentally prepare to even think about putting on a bathing suit. Even with my million dollar, sure to please, hold you up and in miracle suite, no. I recently had some friends and family over and told them, "listen, if you want, bring your suit". Now each one of them felt totally free to tell me, "It's not gonna happen". But then I told them my little secret. I control ALL lighting in my swimming area. It is so strategically done that you could stand there bare neked and we'd all say, "You look... mahvelous!," , aka, Fernando Lamas. Seriously. This business of inviting people over and not first doing your job on the lighting aspect, well, it is just not right. People need protection. The people exposing it need to know they are protected and the ones left looking, and believe me you, they will be looking, well they need protection too. So what if that leaves our al fresco dining in somewhat of the dark. Trust me, looking at people in their bathing suits can be a natural appetite inhibitor!


Everyone needs a purpose!

This morning my husband asked me what day I change the sheets on our bed...I felt this little creepy crawly feeling run across my scalp right down to my cheeks. "What day", I repeated? "I don't have a day, it is not like I have some kind of system here". "Oh, I see", he replied, "Well I was just wondering". "Did you think I have this organized list that I run through at the start of each week, let's see, today is Tuesday and it's grocery day"? No, I go to the grocery store when my stash of Cameo cookies runs out or if I feel like it. See, that is the whole damn problem with this "new job" I have, there just isn't much accountability. What day do I change the sheets? Well, since I have a favorite set, 750 thread count, Egyptian cotton, I do have to plan it out a little. Like I have to make sure that one of the two dryers are free of other crap, because I will want to wash and wear those sheets, so to speak. So, you see, it is more a matter of opportunity as to when I change the sheets. Oh, and for those of you that are thinking, "damn, wonder when she does change those sheets, trust me, they get changed on a regular basis, say every 8-9 days. Now I know, I know. See, before when I had that great cleaning lady, yeah, the one with the haircut like a mullet, well then my sheets were changed like clock work, every Thursday. But then I didn't get to sleep with my favorite set every night. She'd cycle them and sometimes we'd slid into bed only to find sheets that didn't "slide" at all. Mornings I'd wake up with razor burn. So, you see, there is a trade off there. Yeah, this new job, well I am just not cut out for the whole, "do whatever you feel like". I take full advantage. I have found I can lie around almost all day, play on-line Boggle, a little Mafia Wars and than right before everyone gets home- I run around, make the bed, straighten out the sofa pillows, get dressed (yes, I did say get dressed) and pick up my keys and head to my favorite store, Publix. The kids will say, "What'd ya do all day mom"? And I will glare at them and respond, "I worked on the computer all day and I am really exhausted, what did you think, hum"? Their typical response is a raise of the eyebrow and a , "Really, we were just asking, why'd you get all defensive"? Then I will laugh and say, well, really I raised up two levels in Mafia Wars and earned a ton of money, it was a good day, but still I am worn out, does anyone want to run to the store"? Yeah, I don't know how these "stay at home moms" do it. Maybe I need a play date or a book club or something to keep me current. I wonder if they allow drinking at those clubs? That would work. I could work out a little schedule, Monday's play date at the Wine Room in Winter Park, Tuesday- Mafia Wars, Wednesday-rest and read up for Friday's book club. Oh, and the sheets, I will fit them in somewhere!


Cold and All Alone

The morning started like every other morning AND then BOOM. It happened. Oh, I had my usual breakfast of egg whites with fresh spinach and a little bit of goat cheese sprinkled in for good measure. But, before I get into the predicament I later found myself in, let me fill in some details...
This morning, Friday, was day number five of my newly created world. My new world is filled with things like calorie content, fat grams and the now infamous Body Bug. Yeah, that same little gadget that I strapped on my upper, left arm early Monday morning, jumped on the treadmill, only to think I was having a heart attack ten minutes in. Every once in awhile it starts up, getting real verbal with me. It vibrates and buzzes and pinches! What I thought were early signs of an impending George Sanford, "It's the big one Elizabeth, coming to get me", was merely the Bug acting up and pinching the hairs on my arm! So, now that I have laid the ground work for my impending doom, you'll know where I am coming from.
Yesterday, I found myself in my most favorite of favorite stores...Yes, Publix. All my friends were there, working away, except the little Apron lady. Not sure where she has been lately, but that is OK, because I always tend to over eat her delightful little samples of those "mini" meals.
Anyhow, I was in the frozen foods section, somewhere near the ice cream section, but not actually committed to it. Really, if you'd have run into me at the store, you would not have known if I was buying a Weight Watcher frozen dessert OR the Gelato that somehow in the end found its' way into my cart. It was a new product, ridiculously expensive and when my eyes locked on to it, sitting there all eager for me to touch it's high end looking body, I actually heard music. And now I know what people mean when they saw they heard harps... There it was all seductive, taunting me to take a chance. I looked down at the Bug wrapped tightly around my arm and sighed...I couldn't.
Now you understand my total shock when this morning, I opened up the freezer, totally innocently, checking to see that the ice machine was working and there it was! My surprise was so complete, I reminded myself to double check my receipt, was it on there? Or had I "lifted" the little temptress? Well, that was the beginning of the end. Next thing I knew, I was coming to, sitting on the sofa, cold and sticky with an empty container of Gelato on my lap and my once active Body Bug lay dead, its' battery mysteriously removed.


Mother's Day

Mother's Day is Sunday. It will be my 37th Mother's Day as a "motherless daughter". Over the years, I have celebrated many milestones as a motherless daughter and as this Sunday approaches, I can't help but wonder what life would have been like to have had my mother by my side through them all.
When you become motherless, it is such a shock, a numbness envelops you and everything you see and experience is judged through the eyes of this loss. Your equilibrium is off, nothing looks the same. Prior to losing my mom, I thought like many little kids, that nothing bad could happen to my family. But after her death, I was scared for years that something bad would happen, I guess I was waiting for that " other shoe" to drop. Because I knew then- we had no immunity to loss, the safety net had been pulled.
Because I lost my mom at such an early age, for virtually most of my childhood and all of my adult life I have been in this constant state of being "motherless" and attempting to, at first- cover it up and then, later blaming it on my many short comings. But now, at my ripe old age, I understand the loss for all that it is and all that it is not. For many years my yearning to have my mother back was palpable. I would close my eyes at night and hug my pillow tight, trying to recapture her essence and remembering what her voice sounded like. I would cry myself to sleep asking her to come home and begging God to return her to me. I was just a kid, I'd tell Him, why would you do this to a kid, I'd ask? Right after my mom died I decided that I hated God, I was so angry at Him, and at my mom for leaving and bitter towards my dad for staying. Guess you could say I was one sad motherless kid.
I don't remember much of my childhood prior to losing my mom. It was almost like my mom died and there was this vacuum that came along and sucked dry my memories of her placing them in one of those old fashioned bags with the rubber gasket, you can't really get your hand into the bag, and you can only shake out "bits and pieces". But I do remember that I thought my mom was the most beautiful mom in the world. And I remember how safe she made me feel. Once when I was in third grade I slipped on the ice at school and had to go to the nurse’s station where she called my mom to pick me up. I never once cried until I saw my mom walking towards me and then I let loose a torrent of tears. Holding me close she asked me if my head hurt really bad and I told her, no, I was just so happy that she came for me, I couldn’t help balling like a baby.
The crying or really the sobbing continued on a regular basis after my mom died. I was so damn sad and felt so ripped off. I questioned why God had chosen to wreck our family. We used to have such a great family.
I have some memories of my mom being sick prior to her death. But really, I didn’t understand how sick she was. I wanted to host the end of the school year party at my house and my mom agreed. But then my dad told me that just wasn’t going to work out. I was furious. I’d already announced the party to all my friends. It was a tradition, one family would host the end of year party and I wanted that party at my house that year. I cried and screamed at my mom. I asked her why she had to be sick and I told her that I was angry with her for being sick. I was certain she didn’t love me and that was the real reason. I also told her that I didn't love her anymore, I wanted to hurt her, so I lashed out, like kids sometimes do. Really, I had no idea just what I was coming up against. For years after her death, I would feel so heart sick over the things I said that day. I tried granting myself forgiveness, as I was certain she had forgiven me long before she'd closed her eyes for that last time on that early June morning. That date, frozen on a calendar for myself and my six siblings became such a symbol of sadness and loss in my family.

When my mom died she was a mother, a wife, a sister and a daughter, all the things that I find familiar myself, as I write this. Whether I recognize it or not, the foot steps I take each day are identical as hers' 37 years ago. Today, I walk as a mother, a wife, a sister and proudly, my mother's daughter. This Sunday, I will remember my mom and be grateful that in the short time I had here with her she left with me her indelible mark of goodness and the gift to love and forgive, as only a mother can do. Happy Mother's Day, Mom. I love you!