Ti(red)

Part of moving forward is letting go of the past right? Part of being happy is not comparing to what was, but just being in what is. Now. Right?

So as if depression were a twelve step program, allow me to purge some of the past and the garbage I am holding onto. Make record, file it away, and finally start the new chapter.

I hate the clock. I never really had to manage the clock before, and now it runs my life. Ruins my life. I mean, sure, I needed to know when to wake up on a work day. I kept track of when I got to leave the office or if I had rehearsal or whatever, but nothing else really mattered. I could stay up if I wanted, go to sleep if I wanted. I could eat before rehearsal or grab a thing on the way to the theatre or just wait and eat something after. And it could be garbage I was eating – most likely leftover pizza or McDonalds but whatever. Didn’t matter. I knew that no matter what time I went to sleep, I was in charge of when I woke up. But now, Hannah is in charge of everything. And she changes the rules constantly. There is no damn pattern anymore. What happened to predictability? All that “establish a routine” BS is just destroying hope. She does what she wants, when she wants, and she doesn’t know how to read the clock. So do we? Do we read her behaviors and put her down when she’s crabby which varies from 11am – 4pm and jack up a routine? Or do we stick to the routine and put her down as close to 2 as we want? And does it matter if we take her for a bath at 7:30 if she won’t stay in her crib til after 11 anyway? The clock is stupid. And feels SO necessary. And so useless. And I can’t feel free in my own schedule because I never know what she is going to do. Or what HE is going to do. When to schedule a car inspection. When to have dinner and do I make her eat with me? Pick at my plate and ruin her own appetite? Try to have family dinners when we all eat at different times? When do I get to sleep in? When can I mow the lawn?  Do I take her to the park now? Or is it too close to dinner? or bath? or nap? Is she even gonna nap?

Negotiating. I have always been crap at negotiating. I give in too easily. Give up too quickly. I would be a terrible salesman. And in my previous life it came up like once every few years. Buying a house…but in those situations there was a coach and I didn’t have to look at the people I was negotiating with. Buying a car, but again that was like once every 5 years ish. But every minute of every day with a child is a negotiation. There are times when the solution is obvious and harmonious. I’ve got energy and time and nothing but sunshine on my shoulder so absolutely I will take her to the park and let him have some time alone in the house. Other times, it’s not so easy. I wanted to go to that show. Or I had a terrible day at work and just want to curl up under covers on the couch and watch Star Wars or LOtR or Harry Potter (someone want to suggest some other sci-fi fantasy epic trilogy +?) but he’s tired too and she’s being a nightmare and I kinda want to be allowed to sleep through the night if she wakes up and he’d kinda like to go to that thing tomorrow night and I’d kinda like to do that thing next weekend and tomorrow I’m gonna need to rake the yard but he’s gonna want to work on sound and and and and and it just goes on and on. And on. And I give in. Almost every time. There is a point in the future (that is always in the future…like tomorrow…tomorrow is always later, never today) that I hold onto. A majestic day when I will be able to cash in all my chips and revel in the glory of being spoiled, pampered, and completely guilt free in my adult indulgence. But that day is not coming. And I am dieing in the meantime.

Comparability. Or lack thereof. I’m pretty bad about comparing myself to others. It’s part of what makes me excel at my work life and suffer in my personal life. It’s why I don’t have FaceBook. It’s why I limit who I follow on Instagram. I am a jealous person. I have had to admit that to myself a lot lately. I want to be great at arts and crafts and be a magnificent mom and an awesome project manager and a thin tan lifeguard and the perfect lover and beyond financially comfortable and a stunning Hollywood actress world traveler with a perfectly well behaved daughter with delightful well cared for perfect little siblings who all get into just enough trouble to be cute and perfect and endearing. Every thing that everyone else has I want. Funky bo ho house, cabin in the woods, elegant 4 story castle, tiny house built into a truck, downtown apartment, country farm, uptown mansion. I want to live on the beach in the mountains in the middle of the woods on a desert next to a river in my houseboat directly in the heart of downtown where we can walk to everything once we get through our epic football field sized yard. In Europe or South America or the amazing grasslands of these here United States. Nothing I have is enviable. I have become boring. Day in, day out, same old boring work, bathtime, bed rinse and repeat. No one is desirous of my life.

I guess that’s probably enough white girl problems for now. Thanks. That was a lot of rambling and run-on nonsensical sentences. That feels just the littlest bit better.

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The Silence

I got a new computer at work. The new computer has much better big brother protections. I have yet to work out how to not mess up my whole blog format thingie by trying to post from my phone. Technology and I are generally not friends.

Hmmmm. Water and I are also not friends. Water and Technology are not friends. Food for thought.

Anyway, life is pretty much the same steaming pile of garbage it usually is with a delightful young toddler thrown in for extra fun. She continues to climb on everything. I’m not joking y’all. She climbed onto the roof of the van. She has also taken to headhbutting everything very hard. It is just weird and very painful for all of us on so many levels. She slammed her head hard into the glass storm door yesterday morning, hard enough that I worried she might shatter it. I yelled at her to stop and she got sad and slammed her head on the brick entry way. What the crap dude???? Chill out! Slam your head on grass or pillows or I don’t know…STOP SLAMMING YOUR HEAD!

Work is fine but I hate it, So that rocks. Theater is starting to pick up again but that’s a sinking ship. I have a Stage Management gig starting in a few weeks for a company that just announced this is their last season. They’ve been going for 31 years so it’s about time they retired, but still. Sad.

Shelby is working on an exciting new theatre thing so that’s exciting and new.

Ummmm what else.

I have killed a total of 5 snakes in my various yards over the summer. Cuz I’m rad. And have a lawnmower. And lots and lots of rocks for the head smashing. MMMMM delicious.

And on that note!

How Does One Do This?

Children. What the crap you guys.

This is me confirming that vacation seriously screwed everyone up and is totally not worth taking most of the time. Blah.

We took a little longer to drive to Shelby’s parents’ house than usual. Hannah was mostly OK, but syncing up bathroom breaks, gas fill-ups, diaper changes, and food requests was surprisingly more difficult than it should have been. I stopped to fill up the car and no one was hungry, so then I’d get on the road and Hannah would almost immediately destroy her diaper. So I’d pull off again and change her, try to pick up a little snack or something. But inevitably, 30 minutes to an hour down the line someone was hungry or had to have an emergency bathroom break. It was just weird. But we got there. Late. Since Hannah napped the last few hours in the car and we had just arrived in a shiny new place with shiny new people, I was pretty sure that trying to put her to bed was going to be an exercise in futility so I let her stay up until about midnight.

When we visit the in-laws in summer, we have to sleep in the same room with our delightful and beautiful young offspring. That first night, I waited until almost 2:00 to go in the room out of fear of waking her and setting our whole vacation off to a horrendous start. But she slept. I mean, only until like 8:00 the next morning, but she slept through my re-entry and bed squeaks and stayed in her portable crib the whole time. It gave me hope. Maybe she was old enough to get this travel vacation holiday thing now and sleeeeeeeeeeep. The second night, she also slept straight through. In her crib. It was amazing. And awesome. And I let my guard down.

And then no matter how worn out we tried to make her throughout the day, she never again slept through the night in her own bed. She napped well. She napped hard. We played in the pool, ran in the yard, took walks, went shopping, went out on the boat, played with toys, watched her favorite TV show, usually accomplishing all of those things once before each nap and once after. She was tired. But she wouldn’t sleep. Sometimes it was her usual brand of “nap time’s over! I’m UP! LET’S PLAY!!!!” Sometimes it was just a constant wriggling and low level whine. Sometimes it was full out screaming. Sometimes it was midnight – 4. Sometimes she just woke up at 5 so I would take her down for MeMe to play with her and she would fall back asleep for an hour or so and then her nap and sleep schedule went all bonkers and then we all suffered.

But we did have fun. At least I did with Hannah. There were certainly moments I wanted to just throw her at another adult and slam pillows over my face and just sleep until the sun went down, but there were a lot of fun moments too. Watching her play in the pool. Seeing her confidence in wandering a speeding boat and sitting right up front. Her excitement at the mud puddles the days it rained. Her delight at the bubble machine and how quickly she put together her new puzzle. Playing with my parents who came out for a quick visit. Accepting my brother in about 12 seconds and not crying when he held her and smooshed his newly bearded face on her cheeks. Offering kisses to literally everyone at the table and running to hug people’s legs. I’m so glad she is such a sweet and happy girl.

But now that we are back home, her sleep is still fairly erratic. She has slept through the night I think twice since we came back. Last night was the hardest. Last night was one of those nights we couldn’t figure out what was wrong. We each tried holding her, rocking her, singing to her and trying all the usual soothing techniques. But her body kept tightening, completely rigid while she shrieked in the highest pitch I’ve heard in awhile. And then she would flop around and try to wriggle out of our grasp and slam part of her body on something hard that would set her off again. She bit her lip playing in her stroller after dinner, and one of her particularly floppy times she slammed her mouth on my collar bone which set off a siren of cries that were definitely pain driven. She was tired. Not particularly interested in playing. Just crying. I wasn’t going to be able to sleep anyway, so I sent Shelby away to rest in case this went on all day. I would rock her, distract her, get her settled. We’d lay down together and I could hear her breathing slow. I could tell she was almost asleep, and then she would shake herself violently, as you or I might if we were falling asleep at the wheel, and then it would start over. Growing pains maybe? Her mouth still hurting? We were both there to tuck her in which is a usual trigger, so I don’t think that was the problem. I just don’t know.

Also, in other scintillating news, we are rapidly approaching the terrible twos. Hannah was informed of this milestone a little early it would seem as she is being a veeeeeery stubborn little thing, and asserts herself at every opportunity. But even THAT she is doing super cutely. As an example, she has taken to helping herself from the pantry. I’ve seen her come out with a bag of her cookies, and bag of chips, a box of crackers, and a tube of oreos. When we catch her, we tell her she needs to ask dada or momma “please?” and then we usually give her a taste of whatever she came out with. But it usually takes a good three minutes of her trying to get into the thing herself complete with whining and flappy arms and refusing to say please before she gives up, says “peet” while handing over the bag/box and then smiling very sweetly and hugging a leg. Sometimes she’ll frown and put her head on the ground BEFORE running over to hug a leg, but she always hugs a leg. Because it is cute. And it works. And she KNOWS it.

Anyway, this has gotten long and boring enough that I should probably stop and get some work done. Or take a nap. Yeah, let’s take a nap.

 

 

 

Status Update

Since I know you were all worried about me and dying to know…

My computer conversion got pushed to the 27th, so I can totes take work on vacation with me! Isn’t that spectacular?

Let’s get real shall we? Family is fun, sure. But family can also be stressful. Married into family…yeah. I love my husband’s parents and they are nothing but the sweetest people. But sometimes, you just want a computer in your face cuz you “have to check on this work thing” so you don’t have to be the one to make the decision on what everyone is having for dinner.

It also helps to relieve that constant low level anxiety. I don’t have to check everyday, but knowing that I can is just amazing. I may not ever pick it up, I may not ever log on. But if it wasn’t there, I would not be able to stop thinking about it. Would neeeeeeeeeed to check. Would neeeeeeeeeed to be in touch. So yeah, I’m already feeling better about that.

Packing on the other hand…Gah this used to be so much easier.

All the Animals

OMG that one Friday that one time. We took Hannah to the Animal Kingdom. And she loved it. The End.

Just kidding.

But seriously. She loved it. She likes animals. All shapes and sizes. All breeds and species. If it moves by itself she is entertained. And in love. She meows at the cat when she sees him at the door. She barks toward every dog in the park albeit super quietly so they don’t really hear her. Her eyes light up and her mouth spreads into the biggest stupidest uncontrollable smile the world has ever seen. This kid will have a lot of pets.

We did the ape walk. A little trail surrounded on both sides by netted enclosures of various apes. Hannah had just recently learned the monkey sound so she oo-oo-ooed at each one she saw. She pointed, smiled, hugged tightly around the neck of whichever adult took her close up to see. (The other thing she does when she gets really excited is squeeze your face. Sounds cute. Is actually quite painful.)

She enjoyed it so very much. So when we got home, we joined the zoo.

And then we went to the zoo. And she loved it.

The End.

Less Magical; Still Fun

Thursday we left Hannah at the hotel with Meme. We did not, however, leave the stroller. Oops! We received various updates throughout the day about her total enjoyment of the sand by the pool, the little boy in the sand by the pool, the sand in her shoes…just general enjoyment of the sand, much like her mama when it is attached to the ocean.

We attempted some adulting at Hollywood Studios. Of primary interest was the Tower of Terror. I just kind of love it. Shelby kind of hates it but has this weird need to conquer it every single time. Which adds to how much I love it. (Last time we were there, he almost broke my sister’s hand clutching it so hard. It was great. My mother’s experience was also priceless. I wish we’d bought the picture.) Once again we were Fastpass thwarted even though I had learned the secret of the Disney App. We’d scheduled two rides at the Magic Kingdom for later that evening but didn’t get it together in time (9:00 the night before!!!! WTF Disney?) to get fastpasses to anything in Hollywood Studios.

I suppose early March is kind of Spring Break for a lot of places. And I suppose also not the best time to schedule a trip to a giant kindergarten – college age suckhole of a money suck, but it was a chunk of time I knew would work with Shelby’s theatre schedule so that’s when we were there. With everyone else on the planet apparently. Despite half the nation boycotting Disney (which clearly wasn’t enough cuz OMG lines just go away.) Even the lines for the bathroom were long and winding. And by the time you wormed your way through the bathroom line, even Star Tours had increased the wait time to 90 minutes. FOR STAR TOURS!

We waited in line for 80 minutes or so for Tower of Terror first thing when we arrived. Next to some profoundly depressing college girls. Who made me want to stab their eyeballs out and also teach them all of the things and reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeally really hope my daughter is better than that when she gets to be that age cuz OMG you guys do you even remember I HAVE A DAUGHTER? OF THE FEMALE VARIETY? crap.

We then looked up the wait time for the Aerosmith ride which I am sure has a real name but is and forever will be referred to as the Aerosmith ride. 2 hours. NOPE.

We proceeded to saunter around retired old people style. Shelby wanted a beanie so he didn’t look so I don’t know what in the pictures other people might buy of us on no other rides ever because lines. But the one we found on a cart close by didn’t have a tag and the doofus didn’t make up a price but said he couldn’t sell it to us and then hung it back up on the cart so he could NOT SELL IT TO SOMEONE ELSE IN A MINUTE.

There was just way too much profound stupidity at the Hollywood Studios that day, so we bought our Christmas ornaments and meandered to the parking lot after lunch. Because we’re 60 now.

We drove over to the parking lot for the Magic Kingdom and debated whether to ride the ferry or the monorail because you can’t just go to the Magic Kingdom you have to stand in line first. It was just chilly enough to make the prospect of the ferry horrifying so we waited for the monorail. Then waited on the monorail. Then were trapped inside the monorail once we had made it to the park for all of 2 minutes but still, I was done with the monorail.

The sun was warm enough. We did a bit of walking. A bit of talking. We had some time before we could use our Haunted Mansion ticket so we headed over to Tomorrowland which is apparently our jam. We shot imaginary lasers on the Buzz Lightyear ride. I was totally kicking Shelby’s butt but forgot about the last little bit and gave up too early and he creamed me. Whatever makes him happy. The Haunted Mansion was next, but it was stopped like 3 times while we were on it, to include a complete termination of the soundtrack which did not restart immediately with the ride which is a really weird experience. I mean, how can you pass the busted busts without hearing them sing???

We toodled around some more. Rode a few more rides. Bought a few souvenirs. Ate some food. And then got really tired and did not feel like hanging out until 10 for our Space Mountain fastpass so headed to the front of the park. To wait in line.

Don’t ask me why, but we opted for the ferry this time. Something about the length of lines, logistics of the correct monorail, loss of will to live. I felt a very strong urge to punch a woman who was clearly having a worse day than me and accused me of judging her children who as far as I could tell were being remarkably well behaved for the hour. Instead I smiled sweetly and told her that I was just surveying my future and missing my two year old daughter at home. She gave me some other snarky remark and I just laughed and then dragged Shelby to another pocket a little further ahead in the throng. A short while later, we heard a dad shouting as he walked in the opposite direction of the crowd now pushing and throwing elbows to get on the boat. “Owen?! OWEN!! OWEN?! Has anyone seen a little boy in a black hoodie?” My heart plummeted. I really hope they found Owen. I really hope Owen didn’t get in too much trouble. I’m really glad I’ve never (knock wood) felt the gut punch of not knowing exactly where my child is.

We made it back to the hotel without further incident. Hannah was sleeping though not for long. I enjoyed a glass of wine with my feet up sitting in the kitchen next to my husband happily tapping away at his computer. I looked up a few things and began to get excited about Hannah’s adventures to the Animal Kingdom the following day. I had high hopes for the Animal Kingdom.

We Interrupt This Program

To talk about my hair. What the ever lovin GRAY!?

I decided to be a big bad grown up recently. Do a thing I have never really done before in my whole grown up life. I went to a hair salon and dyed my hair. I mean, I only sorta went adult about it. I did go to Aveda and paid very little to have a student dye my hair but shut-up. Baby steps.

And I’m GLAD I didn’t shell out a billion dollars for a dye job and slice up (also known as a cut and color) because DUH DUH DUH…drumroll please.

The amount of gray hair that has crept out around my temples is obscene. And and and, I have generally straight hair anyway, pretty long and thin and limp and boringly mousy brown. It just kinda lays flat against my head no matter what I try to do with it. But these three hairs. Directly in the front. In what would be the widow peak area if I had a widow’s peak. Are short. Gray. And standing at direct attention ALL THE TIME! NO MATTER HOW MANY TIMES I YANK THEM OUT.

I’m thirty five this weekend. 35. I hate it. I don’t want it. I don’t think gray makes me look distinguished. I don’t think laugh lines and sunspots make me feel accomplished and mature. I am vain. And old. And elderly by theatre standards. And I just want boring mousy hair that lightens in the sun but grows all the way down my back without splitting and breaking. And a flat if not toned tummy that looks less like the blob in a bathing suit so I can be concerned about the roll when I sit and not the jiggle and muffin top when I am standing as straight as can be sucking in as hard as humane and covering with as much strategic hand and towel placement as possible. And two separate legs at the top when I stand AND when I walk. And smooth clear skin like I had when I was 20 and did not appreciate. That is what I want for my birthday. Make it so. Miracles people, it’s not that hard.