Long Lost Poem

I found this the other day while cleaning out my mom’s bedroom. I wrote this for her for Mother’s Day 2009.

We’re daughters and mothers
Together we will grow.
We give and take
And take and give
Along time’s endless row

Love is passed and love received
To be passed on again.
A timeless ritual
We accept with pride,
No reason to explain.

We stand together
Arm in arm,
Pulling each other through;
A million bridges,
We may burn, but never bid adieu.

Day after day,
And year after year,
Though life provides us pain;
We fight together
And both shine through
To alleviate all strain.

Fool us not
For we both know,
That it’s far from over yet.
But we are ready
To stand and fight;
Ready to win this bet.

For mothers and daughters
We may be,
Living together in love;
And daughters and mothers
We shall stay,
With a little help from above.

We will find that
Trials and tribulations
May paint the dusty road
And it may seem hard
To face that light,
But weakness will never show.

For we are one
You and I
Standing to brave this storm.
You made me
Who I am today,
And for that I’ll keep you warm.

And in the back
Of my mind,
I will secretly aspire;
That when I’m grown
I’ll be like you,
For it’s you that I admire.

From time to time,
We may pretend
That we get on each other’s nerves,
But we both know
Deep in our hearts,
That’s just how reality serves.

And now we see
The beaten road
Repaved with fresh new stone.
Be it known that together
We labored through,
Never leaving the other alone.

And as we take
The time to look back
Upon our fearless flight,
We can stand with pride
And power in our hearts,
Knowing we have one this fight

Time will come
And time will go,
Along Earth’s course it turns;
There will be ease
And there will be pain,
But the flame of life still burns.

Within our hearts
No matter what,
We will always be one.
No matter how many
Miles or leagues,
That bond will never be undone.

And keep in mind,
A maternal bond
Is a very hard thing to break.
Even harder still,
Comes the task at hand
Because it’s something you just can’t fake.

And from you
I have learned,
That life’s seemingly pointless chores
Are no more
Than tiny tests,
To prove my heart is molded from yours.

So may our love
Go on and on,
A hundred thousand years;
Mothers and daughters,
Daughters and mothers,
Through joys and other tears.

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Paper Boxes

 

In the steam of the mid day sun
We loaded up that old truck,
Stacked high as could be
Like gypsies on the run.

 

Box by box I sat and watched
As my thoughts were carried away;
All life’s lessons packed away
In each tiny paper box

 

But these paper boxes hold my heart
Won’t let these memories fade away.
Resist the urge to break them open
And move on from that day.
These paper boxes, so sturdy and so true
With the tape that binds them tight;
Will stand in my way and block my path
Until I can make things right.
Until then,
These paper boxes hold my heart

 

So life goes on,
That’s what they tell me.
But I can’t see a way past
This maze of paper boxes
And my mind is drowning fast.

 

Time flies, but stands still,
My life will still move on.
But my heart will forever be trapped
In these paper boxes
Until I break the tape and allow their contents to spill.

 

But these paper boxes hold my heart
Won’t let these memories fade away.
Resist the urge to break them open
And move on from that day.
These paper boxes, so sturdy and so true
With the tape that binds them tight;
Will stand in my way and block my path
Until I can make things right.
Until then,
These paper boxes hold my heart

I’m Sorry But No, They’re Not Looking Down on You From Heaven

 

With the death of my mom, the number one phrase that I’ve heard is, “She’s looking down on you from Heaven now!”

No, she’s not.  Quit telling me that.

Now, before you start sulking away into your corners to get away from the cynical, bitter woman, just hear me out, and give me a chance to explain why I take a lot more comfort in knowing that she’s not up there watching me, than the belief that she is.

First of all, I get it.  I understand why people say this, in fact, I’ve been guilty of saying it to others myself more than once.  There’s a couple reasons we say this: 1) It’s an easy out.  When there is nothing comforting to say, we utter this phrase to make the person feel better about the situation because, quite frankly, we don’t know what else to say.  2) It provides us some sort of comfort to think that even though we can’t be with our loved ones, they can still be with us.  Humans are a selfish critter, and we apparently think that once we pass, our ultimate goal is to stick around with the people we spent time with here on earth, even though they made us absolutely miserable and downright sad at times.

My entire life, I’ve been told that Heaven is a place where souls experience nothing but joy.  My image of Heaven is a bunch of souls just floating around obliviously, maybe in a tornado type formation, without any cares in the world.  They may be singing with the Angel Chorus, they may be dancing, they may even being playing bingo for all I know, but the fact is, they’re happy, joyous….gleeful.

My mom could have a twisted sense of humor if you caught her on the right day, but even at her best (or is it worst?) I fail to see how she could in any way, shape, or form find joy, or happiness, or glee, or any other upbeat emotion from watching me and the others she loved here on earth as we fumble around on this planet to make some semblance of a “happy life.”

Don’t get me wrong, I actually consider my life to be pretty darn good here.  But the fact is, I’m human, and I do some really stupid things some times, and I make some piss-poor decisions from time to time.  How in the world could my mom, or anyone else for that matter, find any kind of joy from watching that?

Obviously I know she is in Heaven, my faith tells me that she did everything she was supposed to do to get in those gates, but I actually take comfort in thinking that she doesn’t really know who I am anymore.  I know that sounds weird, but let me stop and say, I understand everyone has their opinion, and many of you probably disagree with mine on this matter.  I respect your right to your opinion because even though there IS a right answer, and a million wrong ones, there’s not a single person on this planet that actually knows the right answer for sure. It’s not a question we are supposed to have the solution to.

So to those of you who have said this to me, I’m not trying to call any of you out, and I can guarantee that when you lose someone, I’ll probably be right there with everyone else, chiming in and saying “He/She is watching over you now!”

And when I do, you can thump me in the nose and say “No they’re not, quit telling me that!”

Lessons in Being a Social Butterfly

A lot of things have changed in my life recently, and despite how the last couple of blogs have sounded, some of those things have actually been good things; great things even.

I’ve always been the type of person who can’t sit still for very long. Truth be told, I probably have mild ADD/ADHD and was just never diagnosed with it, but regardless, the fact is, I tend to be a fairly kinesthetic person. (Sure would be nice if my fat butt actually LOOKED like I was as active as I am!

When I was little, I was the only kid in the neighborhood.  Pair that with being an only child, and obviously I didn’t really have anyone to play with, so I had to become pretty darn imaginative.  I spent HOURS in our backyard playing by myself.

Whoa, what?  You mean kids actually used to play outside

Yup, and I LOVED it!

I remember when we would go places, I couldn’t wait to get home so I could go outside.  I hated rainy days because my mom would get mad at me for dragging mud in the house, and I couldn’t stand winter because it got dark way too early.

I would run around and act like a fool for hours on end in that back yard, until my mom, after telling me 4 times that it was too dark out, would come and grab me and literally drag me back inside the house.

My point is, I was never that kid that sat at home and watched TV or played video games.  I did that a little bit, but honestly, I was good for about 3 hours of that a week and the rest had to be doing something active, outside of the house.

When I grew old enough to drive, I was NEVER home.  I found something to do, even if it was just driving up and down the same streets every day, day dreaming about the future; reminiscing about the past.

As I grew into an adult, I began to realize why I was the way that I am.  It’s because my mother was the exact same way.  That woman could go 90 miles an hour and always find something to do.  We were constantly on the go, whether it was shopping or traveling, or going to auctions.  If I wasn’t in school, and she wasn’t working, you can bet your boots that she and I were out doing something together.   You would be hard pressed to find either of us at home.

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Even from an early age, we were always together!

So that was my life from about the time I was 21 until now.  It was always “go, go, go!” and we were always out getting in to some sort of trouble together.  I think that’s the part of the relationship that everyone is so jealous of, because when I say she was my best friend, she really was.

Now I’m really making an attempt to not make this next part sound resentful, because I want to make it clear that I don’t resent my mother for taking up every last minute of my free time.  I’m thankful for the time we got together, and I’m so glad that, for the most part, I took advantage of it. I consider myself one of the lucky ones that never has to wonder what would have happened had I spent more time with her, though I do still wish I HAD more time with her.

There were times when I would get mad at her though.  She found it hard to accept sometimes that I had friends, and those friends sometimes wanted me to go out and do things with them.  They liked my mom, and they usually would invite her to go along, but she never accepted the invitations.  I think she felt like she would be a third wheel.

And of course, I was growing into an adult, and I wanted to start a life of my own at some point, and to do such things, you have to go on dates with boys(or girls, if that’s your thing), and obviously she didn’t want to come along for those.

So I made an effort to not be overly social, because I got the feeling that she felt somewhat abandoned in a way, and it broke my heart to think that she thought I had rejected her in any way.

Now I’ve found myself with a lot of free time.  I’ve found myself miserable at points because I have nothing to do but sit at home and watch TV, and I’ve already made it clear that sitting at home is not something I’m keen to enjoy.

But things are starting to pick up.  Friends are starting to call, wanting me to go do things with them on a regular basis. Just this past weekend I was rarely home more than a couple hours.  I found myself out with the night creepers on Saturday evening and back up with the roosters Sunday morning.  I got about 2 hours of sleep Saturday night and I LOVED it!  I absolutely loved the fact that I had so much to do, that I didn’t even have time to sleep!

All that said, I have to admit, it’s been a bit awkward — teaching myself to be social again.  I’ve never been a “type A” personality, so while I love doing things, I may not always be the most social person.  I’ve had to train myself to just let loose and do different things, because once I get out there and start doing them, I have a blast!  But now I have to figure out how to balance social life with “adult” responsibilities, and I think that’s what I’ve been struggling with the most.  Because I feel like I have so much of a social life that I have to “catch up” on, I want to do as much of that as I can all at one time.

And I almost feel like I may be using the social thing to avoid some responsibilities. Not because I’m an irresponsible person, but because I’m still not ready to completely accept reality and begin the process of moving on.  I don’t necessarily think that’s an altogether bad thing, based off feedback I’ve gotten from others.  There’s absolutely no reason that I should rush anything, I should just take things a little at a time and do them on MY time.  There is no rulebook or set time table that says you have to get to this point at a certain time, and you have to accept this by this time.  All you can do is wing it…and that’s what I’m doing!

So anyways, today is projected to be a quiet day, I’m sure some of you will be getting the infamous “I’m so bbbooooorrrreeeddd” text that you’ve undoubtedly gotten from me in the past, just a fair warning on that!

I do have adult things that I should take care of today, so I reckon I should get started on that.

Unless, someone wants to hang out….

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Umm…Thanks?

In my last post, I wrote about the death of my mother.  I think I made it pretty clear, but this was a very significant loss for me, and those who know me, know just what an impact it has been on me.  First off, let me start by saying, I have some amazing friends and family. The support system that popped up, almost overnight, when my mom first got sick was so impressive, that I found myself extremely humbled and thankful for the souls that have been placed in my life.

 

All that being said, I’ve been faced with a perplexing situation.

 

Over the last month or so, every conversation has started with the exact same phrase:

 

“I’m so sorry for your loss.”

 

This phrase is always followed up with a rather awkward pause.  Partly because they don’t know what else to say, and partly because I certainly don’t either.

 

What exactly are you supposed to say when someone says this to you?  Most of the time, I shrug my shoulders and say something like “yeah, she was one-of-a-kind!” But is that really the appropriate response?  Do you thank someone for acknowledging that someone in your life has passed away?  Does that seem a tad bit morbid or inappropriate?  I really don’t know!

 

I’ve found through this whole situation, that there really is a lot I don’t know about life, and how to handle certain things.  People keep asking me if I’ve been out to the cemetery to “visit” her, and I can honestly say yes, but I don’t think I’ve been out as much as they expect me to be.  I think people expect that I should be out there 3 or 4 times a week, and to be honest, I’ve been out there 3 times total since the funeral.

 

For the most part, I don’t divulge that information to most people, but the ones who have flat out asked how many times I’ve been there, I am honest with.  Some of them give me a perplexing look, as if it is disrespectful that I haven’t gone to “pay my respects” more often.

 

I don’t see it as disrespectful at all, and here’s why.

 

I know not everyone who reads this blog is a Christian, and doesn’t believe in a higher power, but I do.  I believe full-heartedly that we were all created by a superior being (in the case of my faith, God) and when we die, our souls go to either Heaven or Hell depending on what occurs on judgement day.

 

Whether you are Christian or not, there is one thing we can all agree on.  After death, our earthly bodies go to one place; our final resting ground, and they never leave (except under extenuating circumstances, but just stay with me on this!).  In most cases, that’s either a grave, or an urn, or some sort of memorial.  But even those who don’t believe in any kind of afterlife have to agree, that once you die, your soul is gone.  That body laying in that casket, no longer has a soul.  It doesn’t matter where you think that soul has gone, it’s not there, plain and simple.

 

So my justification behind this is, why should I feel like I HAVE to visit a grave site when my mom isn’t there?  Maybe that sounds a little, I dunno…maybe disrespectful, but I personally see it as a way of accepting that I know she has moved on to something bigger and better, and as long as I continue to force myself to go to a grave, I’m only prolonging the denial phase.  Again…maybe I’m wrong; honestly, I probably am.

 

So I just want to put it out there now, for when my day comes, I hope that none of you feel obligated to come and kneel beside a headstone and cry (or laugh, I won’t judge) because guess what…I’m not there!  To be completely honest, I don’t care what happens to my body after my soul leaves it.  The human body is amazing and complex, but at the end of the day, it’s just a vessel…an imperfect vessel.

 

 

Just Me, In a Hole

Wow, it’s really been a hot minute huh?

Honestly, I never had much intention of coming back here, I’m not sure why, writing has always been one of my absolute favorite things to do, and blogging was always a good way to relax and unwind, and just have some fun!  Maybe I’ll start back up again, maybe I won’t…not making any promises.

So, before we get too far into this, I should warn you, that at times this entry may seem, understandably, a little dark and depressing.  I’ll explain what’s going on in my life momentarily, and I think it will make some sense why I am where I am in my life right now.

So where am I?  I’m at a very strange impasse in my life.  I’ve found myself standing on the edge of….well, I don’t want to call it depression, because I don’t think it’s that bad, and I can definitely see the light, it’s just a matter of getting there; but it’s definitely sadness.  Sadness, at least long term sadness, is something I’ve (fortunately) never had to deal with.  Sure, we all have moments of sadness and the feeling of hopelessness, but for the most part, it passes rather quickly for me.  I’m happy with my life, and I’m good with where I am, despite the fact that I don’t have a whole lot to show for it!

2016 was supposed to be my year.  At the beginning of the year, I was so excited because I just had a feeling that this year held so much potential.  There were so many new opportunities put in front of me, and I couldn’t wait to jump on them.  I was so eager, that I probably made some really poor choices, but even so, I don’t regret any of those choices.  I see where they put me, and how it all fit into the puzzle, and I was, and still am (once I get out of this hole) excited about making the most of what has been laid out before me.

2016 was going to be a year of new adventures, new experiences, new stories to be told, and the truth is, that’s exactly what It’s turned out to be; just not exactly what I had expected.

At the beginning of the year, I was starting a new job, a good job, that I was super excited about and had a lot of potential.  I also was in the process of getting a brand new house, which the story behind that is worth about 25 different blogs by itself.  And after nearly 6 years, I was faced with the task of starting a new relationship.  That’s right, “the boy” and I had finally gotten to a point where it was best that we thought to move on, apart.

It was a scary time for sure, but it was exciting at the same time.  I love starting new chapters, and I had so much working in my favor, that I felt as though nothing could get in my way.

But everything came crashing down in April.

On the morning of April 22, my mom went to the Emergency Room, complaining of stomach, neck, back, and shoulder pain.  She had all the symptoms of a heart attack.  When she got there, they discovered that her heart was perfectly fine, but she was still in a great deal of pain.  The dr there was so diligent, she was determined that she would get to the root of the problem, no matter what!  Eventually, it was determined that she had a stomach ulcer that had perforated quite a while back, and it had been leaking into her abdominal cavity.  She was rushed right then and there to have emergency surgery.

I’ll never forget that first night in ICU.  As we waited for them to take her to surgery, the surgeon came in to talk to us about the risks, and she was extremely cold and candid.  It was the first time I’ve ever been truly scared.  The surgery lasted nearly 3 hours, and when it was over, the surgeon came out and said that everything went well, and that she expected mom to recover fairly well, though it was going to be a long recovery process.

Over the next few days, she started to do better, they took her out of ICU and put her in a normal room after about 3 or 4 days.  Turns out, that was way too soon.  The first night she was in a normal room, she crashed.  They rushed her back down to ICU and put her on a ventilator to help stabilize her.  She was on the ventilator for a couple days before they tried to take it out again.  Again, she started recovering, so they moved her back to a normal room.

The next few days went pretty well.  She was alert, happy (as happy as one can be in a hospital bed) and eager to get out of there.  She was doing so well that the hospital eventually told us that we would have to move her to a rehab facility, better prepared to deal with her recovery.  That was great news!

We moved her to the rehab facility, and I was feeling so confident that she was doing well, that I decided to go to the fireworks demonstration that the wholesaler we buy fireworks from was putting on.  (I’ve told y’all before that my family runs a fireworks stand every 4th of July and New Year’s right?  Well if not, we do!)  The wholesaler is a good distance from where we live, probably a couple hours.  Anyways, as soon as I got all the way there, I got a call from my step dad saying that the rehab facility had placed mom in their ICU because she had crashed once more.

This time it was internal bleeding.  She was bleeding profusely, and they couldn’t figure out what the cause was.

After several tests and pokes and prods, they finally determined that it was her colon.  So we had to take her back to the real hospital and have them figure that out.  They did several colonoscopies, cat scans, blood work; you name it, they did it.

Now, let me back up a minute, because I forgot to tell you something very important.  When they did the surgery on her stomach, the surgeon determined that her liver was in very poor shape.  We never had any reason to suspect she had anything wrong with her liver.  If you knew my mother, you would have paid $50 just to watch her drink one little wine cooler.  She is the only person I know that could get flat out drunk off one little drink, and she was a VERY happy drunk when she drank!  That being said, she almost NEVER drank.  So we were pretty shocked to hear the diagnosis of cirrhosis of the liver.

Apparently your liver is pretty darn important.  Obviously I knew that, to some extent, but I never really realized just HOW important it is.  So because her liver was so badly damaged, the surgeon told us from the beginning that she would not survive another surgery.

Now we found ourselves at a very crucial point in her recovery.  It was a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” type situation because the drs determined that he colon was so badly damaged, that the best thing to do for her, was have it removed.  At the same time, knowing her condition, and knowing that she would have a very low success rate were she to undergo another surgery, we had to come up with some creative ways to get around having her colon removed.

For two weeks, they treated her colon with medication.  For two weeks, she would get better and be almost back to normal, then crash the next day.  For two weeks, I never knew if I was going to come in and actually have a mother to talk to.  It was a rough time in my life, but I did my best to stay strong.

Finally, after we had tried everything under the sun, including radiation, there was nothing to do but either have her colon removed, or just wait.

What a decision to be faced with.  The surgeon’s exact words to us were “you have two choices, either do the surgery, and give her a fighting chance, or go ahead and call hospice and just wait.”

What do you do in a situation like that?  Why is there not a rule book or something that gives you direction to make the right decision?  Do you just let nature take its course, or do you intervene and try to prolong a life, not knowing what the quality of that life may be?

Maybe we made a selfish decision, but it was a decision that I and my step dad both came to together.  Do the surgery, give her a fighting chance, because neither of us was ready to give up on her just yet.

The surgery actually went well.  She did fine, no issues, despite her pesky liver that was always causing reason for concern.  She started to stabilize a little, but her mind never really came back.

On the morning of June 8, I was the first one there.  I came in the room and her eyes were open, which was a relief, because she had been sleeping pretty much the entire week after the second surgery.  There were times in between, that you could get her to wake up and ask her to squeeze your hand or nod to answer questions.  She had a ventilator in still, so she couldn’t talk, but she was at least alert.

However, up until this point, you always had to wake her up to get her to respond to you.  So it was refreshing to see her with her eyes open, it gave me hope that she was starting to turn back in the direction we wanted her to go.

My hope faded quickly.

After I put my stuff in a chair and walked over to say hi, I realized something wasn’t right.  Yes, her eyes were open, but I stood there for a moment and never saw her blink.  I grabbed her hand and asked her to squeeze it and got no response.  I took a good look at those wide open eyes, and realized they were glassed over.  I even went so far as to close her eye lids, and as soon as I released my hold, they popped back open.

It was at this point that I knew, June 8, 2016 would be a day that will NEVER leave my mind.

After talking to several drs we finally got a full prognosis; her failing liver had caused everything else to follow suit-her kidneys were failing, she was now on dialysis, her lungs were failing, the ventilator was breathing for her, her colon was gone, she had an ileostomy bag, and she had apparently developed bleeding on the brain.

The brain bleed was completely new.  We knew about all the other stuff, but for me, this was God’s way of saying “I’m not giving this one back, so you might as well just give up now, I want this one in Heaven with me, and there’s nothing you can do about it.”  So we finally decided to give in.

We took her off life support at 4pm that afternoon.

At 4:10, I stood in a room, surrounded by amazing friends and family and desperately counted the seconds between each breath she took.  It had been 30 seconds since her last breath when the nurse came in and told us she was gone.

I’ve only experienced loss once before in my life.  When my grandpa passed away.  Up until this point, those who I’m closest to, have managed to stick around.  But this was a HUGE loss for me.  Anyone that knew the relationship I had with my mother, knew that it was a VERY special one.  One that I’ve been told many times that most people are jealous of.  She was truly my best friend.  We did everything together, where you saw one, you always saw the other, and we were CONSTANTLY going.  Our weekends were always so full, that I found myself praying for a day of nothing to do.  And when those nothing days came, I was so ridiculously bored, that I would find something to do and drag her along with me.

She was the first call I made any time I found myself in some sort of trouble.  She was the first person I called with a question.  She loved my silly “domestic” questions, things like “how do you boil eggs? Can you put mayonnaise in the microwave?  How long does it take chicken to cook?”, obviously I have never been very good at domestic life.

She was only person who ever really saw me cry.  I’m guarded in my emotions, and I’m not one to show them openly, but I always allowed her to see my true colors.  And she always knew when something wasn’t right, sometimes before I realized it myself.  She could hear it in my voice when we talked on the phone.  She just knew me, unlike anyone else in the world ever has.

She was my best friend.

It’s taken me some time to really deal with all of this, and even longer for everything to really hit.  I never really grieved.  I didn’t cry much at the funeral, and I bounced back pretty quickly afterwards and did all the things that needed to be done.  I went to west Texas to run the family fireworks stand, had a few minor moments that I just needed to be alone, but for the most part, never really broke down.

I had an incident yesterday though, when I went to the grocery store.  Mom worked in the pharmacy of our grocery store, she had a lot of friends there, and she was so popular with the client base there that several of them actually came to her funeral.  So I found it really difficult to buy groceries there.  I walked around the store, blubbering most of the time, sometimes so bad that I could see mothers grabbing their children and shooing them away from the “crazy lady”.

Everyone keeps telling me things like “your strength is empowering! You are so strong and brave!” but I don’t really see myself as being all that strong.  It’s taking everything that I have to not crawl in a hole and beg God to give me my mom back.

I wish it worked like that.

Anyways….I know it will all get better with time, I just wish time would hurry up already.  They keep saying that life will get back to normal.  I’ve found myself stricken with a sort of “loneliness” which is so weird for me because, for the most part, I’m a loner.  I value my “me” time, my time to myself.  But I’ve found myself just wanting to be with people, and trying to find things to get in to.

So for now, I guess I just stay in this dark place, and let time tell where I will end up.

Numbers

Things have been crazy around here lately, I haven’t found the time to blog much but I’ve got a few minutes so I thought I would talk about an idea that I came up with a few months ago, and just never wrote about.

When we first moved to this area of the world, one of the first things I noticed was that, rather than names, all of the roads are numbered.  I presume the reason is that it is a rural area and all of the roads are farm and ranch roads, which, for some reason, the road namer people thought it would make more sense to n number them.  Apparently they thought it made more sense, which it would, were the numbers actually in order.  But they’re not.

To say I’m directionally challenged is an understatement, I get lost, easily.  My first few explorations in this area led me to a number of unforseen adventures.  I can’t help but think that if the roads had names, it would be a little easier for me to get around.

To give you an example of what I’m talking about, here are the directions from my parents old house, to my old job.

  • left on 1230
  • left on 171
  • right on 917
  • left on 1902
  • right on 1187
  • left on 731
  • right on 20
  • left on 35
  • right on 170

That’s it, not one single named street.  How confusing!

Source: pixabay.com
Source: pixabay.com

And I’m not the only one that was initially perplexed by the strange naming system.  My mom was equally confused.  So what did we do?  We gave the numbered roads proper names, of course!

  • 1004 became Baby Cow Road (because the first time we drove on it, there was a pasture of baby cows at the intersection…duh!
  • 913 became Tower Road (Water Tower)
  • 909 is Horse Road (Because the place I board my horses is off of it)
  • The road leading to Horse Road (it’s a number, I’m sure, but I have no clue what it is) is Horse Mailbox Road (obvious)
  • 917 is S Curve Road
  • 1902 is Tire Road (There’s a tire shop on it)
  • 915 is HIdden Road (They’ve put a new freeway in, but this road used to be hard as heck to find because they never mowed around it)
  • 1230 is Cemetery Road

See?  Much easier!

Are You Smarter Than a T-Rex?

Every once in awhile, “the boy” approaches me with a question:  Where are my gurl blogs?  Which then triggers me to respond by saying “well, I have lots of good ideas for some, just haven’t had the time to write any, I’ll start blogging again soon, I promise!’

So here I am…you have “the boy” to thank!

First and foremost…study this timeline, you will be quizzed on it later.  Seriously, I spent a lot of time making this, study it!

money timeline vertical

Now that you’ve studied the timeline above, (note: if you haven’t studied it, do it now!) allow me rant.

Credit/debit cards are not new.  Neither are the POS (Point of sale goobers…not Piece of…well you know what else POS stands for) card readers.

Now, I’ll tell my age a little here and reveal that, when I was a kid, I vaguely can remember a time when my mom would pay for something with a credit card, and the cashier had to get out that little carbon copy doo-hickey.  For those of you youngsters, basically they would place the card on this little box.  The box had a receipt paper and a piece of carbon paper, and when they pressed on the card, the indentions would be imprinted on the receipt paper.

But, those are LONG gone.  I have also been around long enough to know that the POS card readers have been around since my early childhood as well.

So why, why, why, why, why?  Is it so hard for some people, to this day, to figure out how to use these things?  And I’m not even talking about the elderly who have trouble seeing.  I’m not talking about my mom’s generation, who has trouble with technology like smartphones and computers.  I’m not talking about any generation in general, because the fact is, these things have been around long enough, we ought to understand them.

Yet, it seems that at least once a week (once a day some weeks), I get stuck behind someone who is absolutely befuddled by these little magical card reading contraptions.

Just the other day, I got behind a lady in a very busy grocery store.  The lines were ridiculous to begin with, and I just so happened to pick the “right” line.  Does that happen to anyone else?  There’s 30 registers open (Obviously I wasn’t at Wal-Mart, they have 100 registers available and at any given time a day, there’s only 3 open) and every single line in the place is moving except yours.

Anyways…back to the point.

The lady checking out was about three people in front of me.  The cashier had done her job and scanned all of her groceries and it was time for her to pay.  The whole thing went a little something like this:

Cashier: That will be $26.32

Woman: Here you go (proceeds to hand the cashier the card, even though the POS thing is right in front of her, literally, she had to move it out of the way to hand the card to the cashier)

Cashier: Go ahead and swipe it right there (points toward POS)

Woman: Oh! I didn’t see that! (Really lady?)

The woman slides her card. She stares at the screen for what seems like an hour.

Cashier: (Finally!) It’s asking if you want debit or credit.

Woman: Does it matter?

Cashier: No, not unless you want cash back, if you do, press debit.

Woman: Oh, I don’t need cash back, but I pushed debit anyways.

Cashier: That’s fine, push the green button if the amount is ok.

Woman: If the amount is ok?  Wait, did the amount change?  How much did you say it was?

Cashier: $26.32

Woman: Oh, well that’s what it says here.  I don’t understand what to do now.

Cashier: Just press the green button.

Woman: But wait, if I press the green button, how much is it going to charge me?

Cashier: $26.32

Woman:  Are you sure?  Why would it ask if the amount was ok if you already told me what the amount was before I swiped my card?

Cashier: It’s just reassuring that you know how much you are being charged.

Woman:  But I don’t!

Cashier:  (Pointing at the screen)  It says right here, “Total: $26.32, is this amount right?  Yes/no”

Woman:  OH!  Ok, I understand now!  Yes, that’s the right amount.

At this point, she is still staring at the screen telling the machine that it’s the right amount.

Cashier:  Just push the green button.

The woman pushes the green button and stares at the screen for another eternity.

Cashier:  It’s asking if you want cash back.  Push the red button for no.

Woman: Ok. ( She pushes a button)  Oh no!  I pushed the green button by mistake.

Cashier:  It’s ok, just hit zero.

Woman: But I don’t want cash back.

Cashier: That’s fine, just hit zero to cancel it out.  It won’t charge you anything extra.

Woman:  Ok.  (She presses zero, and the receipt prints out.  Success at last!  Or…maybe not)  It didn’t ask me if the amount was ok this time.

Cashier: You already confirmed that the amount was ok.

Woman:  I know, but I did the cash back thing, and I want to make sure the amount is still correct.

Cashier:  Let me show you, right here on your receipt.  It shows your total was $26.32, it charged for that plus zero cash back.

Woman: It charged me to do cash back even though I didn’t want cash back?

Cashier:  No ma’am, it’s just showing that you pressed cash back and you asked for zero cash back.

Woman: Well why is it charging me?

Cashier:  It’s not ma’am, look here, it shows you the total amount you were charged, $26.32.

Woman: Oh, this technology is so confusing.

She proceeds to stand there, staring at her receipt while the cashier is waiting for her to move so she can check out the next person in line.

Woman: Wait, I still don’t understand…

Customer in line behind her: TAKE IT TO CUSTOMER SERVICE!  There are other people waiting to check out!

Woman:  Wow, what a B—!

She proceeds to push her cart to customer service, where she was still arguing with the boy behind the counter when I left.

Seriously people….the dinosaurs had it figured out and they had brains the size of a walnut.

dinosaur

Ahh, So Finally I Have Justification!

Yep, I know, I’m bad about keeping up with this. I’ve just been so busy lately. New job, keeps me insanely busy during the day, which I love, but I don’t have any desire to get on a computer after being on one all day long.

Anyways, I really had no intention of updating, if I’m honest, and y’all know I try to keep it real.

But, something happened to me that I just had to share.

My biggest fear (EEVVVEEERRRR!!!) happened to me today on my lunch break.

I went out to my truck, and when I climbed up, I was sitting on my skirt, so I reached down to pull it out from under me. That’s when it happened…yep, no long, draw out prelude to this story folks!

Bam! The worst pain I’ve felt in a very, very, very, long time shot up my pinky finger. I didn’t know what it was, I immediately pulled my hand up and looked at my finger. I saw, what appeared to be, a thorn. That’s one mean freaking thorn! Seriously.

So I brushed the thorn off my finger and closed the truck door, and just as I moved my legs, I saw it.

Beady little eyes, furry little head, veiny little wings.

YELLOW AND BLACK! YELLOW AND BLACK!

beeeeeee

Yup, the worst possible thing that could ever happen to me.

For the first time in my life, I had been stung by a bee.

Now, for those of you that don’t remember, I have this irrational fear of bees. Like seriously irrational, I will straight up jump out of a moving vehicle if one of those little you-know-whats flies in. Or, I’ll stop my car in the middle of the road and jump out before taking it out of drive. (Y’all remember this story right? …. or this one?)

I’ve had this fear for YEARS. And for years I’ve had to explain why I go into absolute panic mode when I see anything with a stinger on its hiney, and the conversation always goes something like this:

Me: I’m TERRIFIED of bees! (for clarification, my definition of “bee” includes anything that has a stinger; wasps, bees, yellow jackets, hornets…)

Innocent Bystander: Oh! You must be allergic!

Me: I don’t know if I am or not.

Innocent Bystander: How do you not know if you’re allergic?

Me: I’ve never been stung!

Innocent Bystander: Then WHY are you so scared of them?

Me: Uhhh….ummmm…..well…..I dunno!

 

and then Innocent Bystander feels the need to say:

 

Well, they really don’t hurt that much! There’s no reason to be scared of them, as long as you’re not allergic, it’s just a little sting. And they won’t bother you, if you don’t bother them!

BS! BS! BS! BS!!!!

They don’t really hurt my foot! I have a very high pain tolerance, and that crap HURTS!!!! It hurts, it just hurts! Don’t tell me it doesn’t!!!

And I can’t stand when people say “they won’t bother you, if you don’t bother them” First of all, let’s define bothering. Some people say kids are cute; they BOTHER me! Some people say Ben Stiller is a great actor; he BOTHERS me. Some people say bees won’t bug you; their mere existence BOTHERS ME!

Obviously, my mere existence BOTHERED this bee so much that it decided to sacrifice it’s life to make a point.

We all have different opinions on what bothers us….even bees.

So, the whole point of my non-sensical rambling is this; if anyone thought my fear of bees was irrational before, you better watch out. Because let me tell you, the next time I see one of those little winged fiends….it’s game on!

If one decides to land on the seat next to me in an airplane…I WILL JUMP

If one lands on me while I’m rafting down the Amazon….I WILL SINK THE SHIP

If one goes skiing with me down Mt Everest…I WILL CAUSE AN AVALANCHE

I’m no longer just scared of bees…I’m TERRIFIED, PHOBIC, PETRIFIED, and every other word in the English language that’s a synonym to “afraid”

But at least now it’s justified.

Note: I understand that bees are like, one of the most important things on the planet. I get that. Please don’t lecture me on this. I would never condone the mass killing of bees, for any reason, in fact, I would never purposely kill them, as long as they stay far enough away. So all you tree huggers, get your panties out of a wad and just smile for a change!