Friday, February 26, 2010

Polish the Stars

My parents gave me my love of musicals. Dad and I had been making the "jokes" in Mary Poppins to each other since I could talk.

The Music Man was my favorite musical to watch with my Dad. We would watch it over and over again. It was the the first live show I ever saw. We dressed up and went downtown to the show, but a train was coming and we had to run across the tracks to get to the show on time. I remember staring down the tracks into the bright light.

The show opened with the sound of a train, and a bright light came on the stage. I buried my face into my mother's neck, terrified we were about to be run over for the second time that night.

In later years, I asked my dad what his favorite musical was, fully expecting him to say The Music Man. But he surprised me and said Carousel.

To those who don't know the premise, a man up in heaven (which isn't heaven so much as it's a place you go after you die to polish the stars) gets one more chance to go down and put things right with the way he left his wife and child. As the story goes on, you see that he wasn't a very good guy. He was selfish, a jerk, but he fell in love with this girl and tried to stay on the straight and narrow path for her. It didn't work, and he got himself killed right after learning she was to have his child.

I remember at the end my dad always getting weepy, when even though he hadn't apologized or made anything better, he is sorry and goes back up to polish the stars.

My mom recently expressed a want to see it (since right before he died I thought it would comfort him to see it again and sent a copy) and I told her it needed to wait. That, along with so many other movies, would've broken us at the time.

I still haven't gotten up the courage to watch it, but every so often I think of my dad, looking down on me, and polishing the stars.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

All is Quiet on New Year's Day

I started last year knowing that 2 people were going to die on me. They had issued my Dad the death sentence of 3 months, and my dementia-ridden Grandmother had stopped eating. Both had a DNR order on file.

I was also having horrible chest pains in the middle of the night that wouldn't stop. One lasted for 48 hours. The pain was so bad that, given the choice of dying or calling an ambulance, I would've rather died on the spot.

In reality, I'd been having these pains for years. I had dismissed them as panic attacks, and didn't dare tell anyone about them, for fear it would make me look weak. But, suddenly, in 2009, I couldn't spend a week without being attacked by this unbearable pain. I would spend most nights on the floor in the bathroom, crying for the pain to stop. Sleep would only come after 6 shots of vodka. Nightly.

Finally I went to the doctor, who assumed it was some sort of heart failure. He took blood, urine, EKG, and an, a stress test, chest x-ray, and ultrasound. The ultrasound revealed my gallstones. The doctor said I had more stones than gallbladder at that point. They must have been getting bigger since my first attack, at 16 years old.

But I had to wait. Everyone was on the cusp of death, and all needed to be settled before I could embark upon my first surgery. In fact, I hadn't checked into a hospital since I had pneumonia at 3 months old.

So, as the year wore on, and my awaited deaths occurred, plus one (my dear Nana), I found a doctor and went under the knife. I was terrified, but knew that 2010 could not start with a surgery. Everything needed to be clean and clear by December 31st, 2009.

And it was. With the inheritance that was left to me by my Grandma, we bought a house and watched fireworks outside our bedroom window, then went straight to bed.

My father appeared in my dreams that night. The family was all together and happy, planning a trip out to picnic. We gathered it all and started off to walk to the park, when I noticed that Dad hadn't followed. I turned around to look at him. I know my look said "Are you coming?" and he looked at me and smiled his charming Southern smile and said to me, "Ah, y'all can go on without me."

And I opened my eyes to the brand new year.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Well, That Settles That Then

Lane Bryant has been stalking me in the form of email ever since the cashier put me on the list. I just didn't want to say no to her, I agreed to anything to get myself out of there. Heck, I even donated to Haiti.

So when I got an email this morning promising me 50% off. Getting something cheaper will tip my ego in five seconds, and I was on the web site.

I found a shirt. I liked the shirt.

I went to choose the size from the drop-down menu, looking for my size.

And it wasn't there. At all. Lane Bryant starts 2 sizes above my size.

I breathed a small sigh of relief.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

All About Bloggin'-A Survey

1. How long have you been blogging? I honestly can't remember. Sometime after 2000.

2. What made you start? , while I was in college, and my friends were doing it. I thought "That seems cool" and I started a blog. Then it got popular. Then people got mean. Then I got a stalker. Then, I switched my blog, but kept my information on there. Stalker found it. Had to go completely anonymous, and still had to switch a few times. I think I've finally shook him...but I do still have someone in Mountain View, California who reads daily and never comments.

3. Who inspired you? Well, initially my college friends. Then people I met through my blog really inspired me.

4. About how many hours a week would you estimate you spend on your blog?
This blog? Usually if I think of something, I spew it on here and am purged. I don't really think about it a lot. My other blog I'm trying to market so that people DO read it, and I spend more time over there.

5. What kind of experience or background do you have with writing? I wrote my first novel in

6. Talk about how you come up with blog topics. Where do you get your ideas? Word Vomit. Everything that I feel like getting off my chest or what to talk about ends up on my blog.

7. What or who inspires you and your blog? Is it bad that I don't feel like any one person inspires me or my blog? I think striving to be yourself, but admiring things in others, is how one person should live their life.

8. Where and/or how do you do your brainstorming for your blog? Again, word vomit. Things happen, I talk about them. I wish I could say it was this amazing long process, but it just isn't.

9. Do you have any blogging rules or guidelines you follow? Not really. I'm not sure, do I?

10. Is there anything you will not blog about? I always try to stay away from religion and politics. I believe that is something personal for everyone, and no one has a right to tell ANYONE that what they believe (about something that isn't provable) is the right and true way. The way I see it, we'll find out when we get there. Until then, don't tell anyone they are wrong.

11. Do you have any sort of a publishing schedule in terms of day of week or topic? I try for 3 posts a week. But sometimes, nothing happens, so I just can't blog about it.

12. How many drafts of potential blog posts do you have right now? Technically 2, but usually I don't have any.

13. In what medium do you draft your posts? Since they started the "Save Now" feature on blogger, I do it right here. Firefox keeps my spelling in check, so it works for me.

14. How often do you completely scratch or delete drafts or blog post ideas? I think I've done it maybe once in my whole life.

15. If you had to leave your blog in your will to another blogger, who would you choose? He Loves Me Not Author Sarah. She'd leave her blog to me, and I'd do the same. Although, she'd junk most of them, and she would have every right to!

16. Are there other blogs that you feel are similar to yours in content, style, or voice? I'm sure there are, but it's hard for me to step away and look at my blogs. They are mine, and I stay close to them, so I don't have a lot of...what's the word...objective observance? That's not right at all...but it's close.

17. Has anything surprised you since you started blogging? How crazy a cyber-stalker can be. It's amazing.

18. What are your goals or plans for your blog going forward? Wait, I need goals??? Crap.

19. Do you make any money from your blog? No, but like I said, my other blog I'm trying to market so that I do make money.

20. What blogging system do you use? Blogger, tumblr, twitter (micro-blogging, don't you know), and a few others that lay dormant.

21. How did you come up your blog name? I read it somewhere and thought it was fabulous.

22. How many blogs do you have? What was your peak? I have five, but only post on two on a regular basis.

23. Are you having as much fun as when you started? It's been a roller coaster ride. Not quite sure.

24. Where do you find other blogger like you? Still looking...

25. What’s your one wish when it comes to blogging? That my other one takes off and is a major hit so I can make some money off of it, and that I never have to move this one again.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


I had been saddled with the task of burying my father's body. His newly found will stated he wanted to be put in a special coffin and have it sunk to the bottom of the sea. The coffin was made of ship parts and where his head would lay was a submarine window.

The time had come where I had to put the body into the coffin. I didn't want to touch it, and it was horrible. I slid his body off the table into the coffin, and it slipped. I was going to have to actually touch the body to move it all the way into the coffin. I sat there, shaking, not wanting to do it.

And then he moved.

He started laughing, and stood up, and said "surprise!" He told me he had been faking his second death for 5 days, slowing his heart rate so everyone thought he was dead. He told me it was like a really long nap, which he needed since he faked his own death nearly a year ago. He paid someone to give my mom someone else's ashes, and he decided to go off and enjoy the world.

I couldn't believe it. I couldn't believe my dad was not only alive, but he had lied to us...twice! The emotion of everything that had just happened was overwhelming. I screamed at him "You try and fake your own death again and I will PERSONALLY light you on fire myself!"

He approached me to comfort me, and I saw his big stomach, his laughing eyes, his mustache, and I tried to hit him. I wanted to hurt him for hurting me so much, I tried to hit his stomach, and I completely lost energy by the time my fist got to him. I sank to the floor and started sobbing. Big, wracking sobs; the sobs I'd only experienced before when my grandma had a heart attack and I saw her scar and realized what mortality was.

It was the big sobs that broke through and woke up my husband. He shook me awake and I remembered it all. Then it hit me it was back to the beginning; he was dead. Not twice, just once. Next month will be a year since his death.

And I started to softly cry.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010


I decided I could no longer go out someplace nice and look as dumpy as I did. I knew I needed Spanx.

The only place I knew that sold them was Lane Bryant. I've never stepped foot inside there before because I would feel more judged than if I walked into a modeling competition. Isn't it strange, that I don't care what those skinny ass bitches think of me, but I hate someone thinking that I'm that skinny bitch? I fear the wrath of the fat girls way more, maybe because I equate weight with intelligence. Because let's face it, most of the beautiful skinny girls are really stupid. In my experience.

So I walk into Lane Bryant with my head down, searching for the Spanx. I saw them in the distance and made a beeline. Suddenly, like a scene out of a horror movie, an overweight employee stepped out behind the wall and greeted me.

My face flushed and I say hi in return, and she asked me what I was looking for. Because I was caught, I said I'd just found what I was looking for, and pointed to the Spanx. She asked me what I needed to use them for, calling me "sweetie." I awkwardly explained that my stomach was sticking out in my dresses, making them look bad. "I carry all my weight in my stomach" I explained.

"Yeah, me too sweetie" was her reply. She looked me up and down and stifled an eye-roll while she said it, and I nearly hung my head in shame. I am overweight, but I know I have nothing on her.

And who knows? Maybe she wasn't judging me. Maybe she felt compassion for ANYONE who walked in the door, knowing they feel uncomfortable in their own skin. Maybe that's why she kept calling me annoying pet names.

On the way to the cash wrap she pointed out they had underwear on sale, and I politely declined, saying I had just gotten a bunch of underwear.

"Victoria's Secret?"

"Um, no...Wal-Mart actually."

Was the Victoria's Secret thing a slight? Was she just being polite? Who knows! At that point I was buying a modern day corset for an absurd price, and I just wanted to get out of there.

Of course, there is a problem with the computer, so I'm left to look around while it gets fixed. It's then that I see....a lot of those clothes were really cute.

Then my mind split in two. One side was saying I should start shopping there. I could wear their smallest size, and then I wouldn't feel so uncomfortable all the time. And I'd look nice. I'd be able to go out looking nice and have a good time without worrying people looking at me because I'm overweight.

The other half of my mind was telling me; This is the slippery slope. You start wearing these clothes, you make it okay to be this overweight, and then you just start getting fatter instead of skinner. You need to be uncomfortable in social situations because it's the drive you need to lose weight. Sure, it's only about 30 pounds you need to lose, whereas the employee of Lane Bryant needed to lose about 100. I'm not THAT bad.

But I could be.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

a 180 or a 360?

I've found lately that people expect me to be a completely different person. Last year when my dad died, I was sad. I'm still sad. It's not something you just get over. Especially since I lost the rest of my grandparents too, and that was the first time I've even had someone close to me die. In my life.

I'm still sort of processing. But it seems to some people, that I should be...well, "over it" already. People saying I don't seem "happy" to be there. Like they didn't know me before. I was never the type of person to "bounce" into a room, unless I had just drank 5 energy drinks. At Once.

I'm finding this "Life after Death" life somewhat strange. You are constantly assessing how you should be acting, making sure you aren't offending anyone. I've tried avoiding parties and functions with tons of people, because I'm just not sure how to react.

Mostly, I'm still me. I'm not really being different. But for some reason, I guess I should be acting like I just gave the world a Coke. Why do people think this way? I feel like everyone in the world gets to fall apart, but for some reason I'm just not allowed. Everyone gets a day off, except for me.