Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Get Off of That Camel and Step Away From The Twinkie!

The squishy gray matter which resides inside my somewhat battered skull is at it again. My damn Creativity Switch has been turned to the "OFF" position and for the past few days, all I have floating between my ears is a bucket load of random nothingness and an uncomfortable quantity of vitriol little spiders creeping around in there and mucking up the mix.

My first impulse to begin the purge of the dastardly duo of Acid and Arachnid, was to make a list of things that utterly and completely irritate the living hell out of me, but upon second thought, abandoned that idea in lieu of making a list of things that utterly and completely irritate the living hell out of me whilst throwing in a few things that I might actually find cheerful and lovely or possessing some positive quality. This tactic, I think, might avoid the probability that a person would read this post and immediately assume that I am a wretched, wicked and altogether miserable old cow.

*Why does it bother me so much that so many women define themselves by what their uterus has accomplished? Yes, I am a mother, but that's not so very singular or unique is it? It is merely one of the many things that makes up who I am, and quite frankly, it's one of the least interesting. To the question, "Tell me a little about yourself," many women I know would answer, "Well, I have (fill in # of nose pickers here) children...." To that same question, I would answer something along the lines of, "I love to write and write bad poetry very well, I love to cook and love to eat even more, I can tell the difference...blindfolded, between good vodka and really good vodka and I love books like bears like honey." That goes a bit more into who I am instead of what my reproductive system has done. (Mr. Right believes that this makes me slightly "not normal." Thankfully, he likes his women a bit freaky.)

*I've discovered that I'm tired, nay, exhausted with attempting to maintain relationships with people I feel I'm supposed to like and with whom I have felt an obligation to keep up the appearance of a relationship, but which bring me no joy and which actually cause me to frequently grit my teeth and bash my innocent and unsuspecting palm upside my forehead. So, for the time being, until I decide otherwise, (I am a girl in flux and progress you know) I'm done. I just must get on with things and expend my limited mental energy on moving onward and upward.

*I know that there's going to be an entire horde of individuals lighting their torches and grabbing their cans of aerosol glue when I say this, but...I hate scrapbooking. Scrapbooking is something I know I'm supposed to like doing, but despise completely. I tried it once and much to my horror, discovered that it took me about an hour of my time and $5 or more of real live, hard earned American dollars to complete each page. Oh my hell. Everytime I see a scrapbook full of pictures at someones house, all my brain can do is scream, "Do you have any idea what you could have accomplished with all of that time and money?!" Thankfully, no one can actually hear my brain screaming because I'd most likely be thrown out of the homes of most of the people I know. (The dislike of scrapbooking aside, a brain screaming would be very, very disconcerting and worthy on it's own merit of being tossed out of someone's house.)

*Did you know that the top two causes of death in this country are illnesses related to the use of tobacco and illnesses related to obesity? Most of the deaths in these categories are completely preventable. I've never been addicted to tobacco, (Swearing is my only real vice and thus far I've not had any medical side affects) but there are people in my life with whom I'm close who struggle with the addiction. More than anything, it makes me sad because I want these people not only to be around for many many years, but to be healthy for those years. I'm that selfish. I want my loved ones to be active and healthy old people with me. Dismount that camel, damn you!!

*Did you know that I used to be a fatty? Yep. A bona fide, medically obese person. I'm 5'4" and at my peak (or rather, the deepest valley of my life) I weighed around 175 pounds. I was quite the roly-poly. I also couldn't fit down the slide with my kids at the park, run, find clothes that looked attractive on me, dance (which I love) or experience a single day where I didn't spend at least part of the day loathing myself. I wasn't healthy physically or emotionally, and yes...they do go hand in hand. The mind and body work in harmony and when one is out of balance, the other is out of whack. Food can be seriously addictive, I know. But, that Twinkie can KILL you. Not only can it do you in, but it can rip your family apart and leave your children parent less and your partner without companionship. (And, probable early death aside, what is your family missing out on in the meantime?) Love yourself more than you love Twinkies. And if you can't love yourself enough to begin the work it takes to lose the weight, love your family enough.

*Have I listed anything lovely yet?! Well, hell. (See...I warned you about those spiders.)

*Okay. Here's one. The Duchess is very vocal about her love for me and never misses an opportunity to tell me how much she loves me. She makes up all sorts of things like, "I love you to the moon" or "I love you 90, 60, 80 percent!" Today, she came up to me and wrapped her arms around my legs and said, "Mom...I love you more than clams." *sniffle* Clams. Now that's love.

This blog sucks on the level of mind blowing suckiness, and I apologize. I've been reading the news again which is a horrific error in judgement on my part and I've been walking around in the dense fog of gloom and doom. (Why aren't my peace sign flip flops, earrings, ankle bracelets and t-shirts getting the message across to the world?!)

If you stayed with this 'til the end and endured the preachiness, the bitchiness and the craziness, bless your little heart. I promise, I'll stop reading the news and I'll continue the search for those brain cells. They're bound to turn up somewhere...right?


Missy said...

Even in your ranting you crack me up. I never watch or listen to the news. I prefer to keep my head in the sand!

Lee Ryan said...

Great Post Amy!!

I don't like scapbooking either - but as a guy I guess that's not surprising.

Tobbaco and twinkies are bad; Scotch is the water of life -..er...where's my bottle... - vodka works too.

Your instinct is right; stay away from the news. You're better off smoking a stogie and chomping on a case of twinkies.

Cynthia said...

Amy, what a complex bummer you are having...admirable. I love your Duchess too...she's a treasure in your time of rant. I know what you mean about the influence of the news...I try to moderate...listen to what's happening once and not hear the same thing with more anxiety each time all day...it's a battle with my husband who has bad new endurance power. I'm with you-Love is what makes the world go around- why doesn't everyone know it. May we all be safe and surrounded in it. <3

Kathy G said...

I'm rethinking some of my relationships this month...the "friends" who send me nothing but junk e-mails (the ones that start out "Pass this one on to ten of your BFF"), the ones who ignore my e-mails and want everything sent to their Facebook page, and the ones who only contact me when they need something. (Oh, wait. Those are the relatives. Guess I need to keep them.)

I don't understand scrapbooking either. My photos are organized in boxes by year. That's good enough for me.

ellen abbott said...

As usual you made me laugh. I share your rants.

Why does it bother me that so many women define themselves by the size of their tits? Mine are itty bitty but never once have I been tempted to have two halves of a melon permanently attached to my chest.

No scrapbooking here. And I don't watch or read the news either. Got better things to do with my time.

Andrea said...

Ok, I stayed with you until the end and love your view of things. Especially the maintaining relationships with folks because you feel obliged. I've gave that one up for Lent a few years back and couldn't be happier. This includes having very little to do with certain in-laws. I just never could meet their standards so I just gave up! I think my husband would love to follow suit but he's pretty gutless.

Glad to have you back. I've been in a bit of a rut lately also. There must be something about the warm weather and sunshine - all that "happy" is sucking the creativity out of me!

Amy said...

Missy: You know what they say. "Ignorance is bliss." Sadly, it's true in a way. The more informed I become, the less I wish I knew. *sigh*

Lee: Did you know that Hugh Hefner scrapbooks? Yep. An entire room dedicated to his scrapbooking. With all of his extracurricular activities *ahem*, you kind of wonder where he finds the time.

Thank heavens alcohol related illnesses were very low on the CDC's list of causes of preventable deaths. I would have had to throw myself under the bus.

Cynthia: You're like a little breeze, you are! Your comment has such a sweet, light touch. Thank you.

Kathy G: The kind of evaluating you're doing is difficult, but good, in my opinion. It's so hard for us as humans to let go of some of those relationships, but so many of them do nothing but drain us. We don't need that!

I have boxes of pictures as well and just this past Christmas sat and put albums together for each of my kids. Just pictures with dates next to them. Nothing fancy. What remains in the boxes, they can dig through when they're older and do with them what they will. (Look at all of the time and money I just saved!)

Ellen: Ha! Bravo for you and your itty bitty titties! I'm all about personal choice and doing what makes you happy. You are a rare woman to be so content with your natural assets. Good for you!

I had no idea there were other non-scrapbookers out there! I am not alone. Yay!!

Andrea: Oh my goodness, yes! You've hit the nail on the head. My husband doesn't understand my ability to assess relationships and abandon ones that are joyless and destructive, even if they're relationships with "family." As a child you don't get to choose your family. As an adult, you do! It is SO difficult for people to understand the fact that shared DNA doesn't oblige you to put up with crap. I roll my eyes at my husband when he says, "But...they're family!"

Blah, blah, blah.

Lee Ryan said...

Yeah - but Heff has scrapbooking material not usually seen outside the hills of WVA. :-)

Angela said...

I don`t even know what scrapbooks ARE, or twinkies, for that matter. Ignorance can be good, indeed.
I loved your outbreak and swearing. Amy (swearing is not considered rude in Germany, it keeps us sane). Draining friends and in-laws should be dumped, I agree.
I hope you don`t count me in, though. And yes PLEASE, I want some of your old-time recipes!!

Angie said...

I hate scapbooking too. I enjoy a well organized photo album as much as the next person, possibly more, but I will never understand scrapbooking. Maybe I'm just really arrogant but I think my pictures are interesting enough on their own to not need a giant Palm tree glued next to them.

Amy said...

Angela - A Twinkie is a little oblong yellow sponge cake with fluffy white creme in the middle. You're better off not knowing what they are. They're so full of unnatural ingredients that rumor has it they'll last on your pantry shelf for years. Ick.

No way am I ever counting you out! It's because I have people such as you in my life that make me realize I don't need the ones that criticize and spread negativity.

I will go through my Gram's recipes and send some. Yay! A little fun project for me!

Angie - I agree completely! If a photograph shows the kids at the beach, the giant paper palm tree looming overhead is unneccessary. I like dates and places. *aaahhhh* Simplicity.

Taylor said...

The thing about mothers and incorporating how many children they have into their definition of who they are is that they're doing exactly what a non-mother does, they're telling you what they've done and do.

A student will tell you that they're a blahblah major at University of Mumble. An engineer will tell you he does process-safety work for Incoherent Incorporated. A doctor will tell you she runs her own practice on Tree street.

Sometimes you'll meet people who surprise! run the PTA or Athletic Booster Club (or ABC or Always Begging for Cash). These mothers consider what they're doing to be a part of being a mother to X kids.

We tell people what we're most proud of. Nobody wears an "addict" badge on their sleeve, but "recovered addict" is tattooed across some people's foreheads. A proud mother tells you about her children, a proud writer tells you about his writing, and a student tells you what they figured out you can actually eat.

What are you if you're'nt what you do?

It probably bothers you because it's a pretty common thing to be a mother, and finding only that out about a woman doesn't really separate her from the rest.

Amy said...

Taylor: No. I think why it bothers me is that far too often women seem to lose their own identitiy after they have children. They forget who they were before they became little Eddie or little Edie's mom. Their lives become defined by motherhood and they begin to lose their identity as a sexual being, as a lover, a friend, etc. All of those things that make up who they truly are underneath those soccer mom clothes.

These are things understood more in depth by, A.) Women and, B.) Those who have experienced having children. (Yes..this includes men. They, after all, are the ones who get to watch their wives turn into moms. How many know they can have both?)

ric said...