Tuesday, September 27, 2016


The morning after the debate between Hillary and Trump, I needed to remind myself that a wild imagination can be a wonderful thing. With two kids in school, I spent quality one on one time with my three year old. This is how we spent the morning. 


She skipped down the road, impatiently tugging on her mother's hand. "Faster! Faster! We have to get to the park!"
"What are we going to do at the park today?"
"We're going to have a picnic with the dragons. We might go to the stream. And...and...and...and... maybe just let's go!"

They sat together at a picnic table. While mom sat, she jumped up and collected leaves and nuts and started arranging them into a picture on the bench. 

"This is a butterfly. And then, a sun! He is yellow yellow yellow and he is smiling."

"Uh-oh. Mom. There is a bad dragon. We are going to have to run. No I mean it! Run!!"And off they ran. Glancing backwards to be sure they were staying ahead. 

"He's too fast and there is a bad witch, Mom. We are going to have to fight. Use your powers! Wait! I have your sword. Here!!"

Carefully unsheathing the sword, Mom swung at the sky! She yelled, "It is no good! I have an idea! I will use my power to freeze him and then you can get him with your sword! Help me!"

Hands outstretched, magical power streamed out from both of them. It sounded like a gushing river. "SHHHHHHHHH!"

She ran toward him. Their powers were not enough, even combined. The witch was using some kind of a protective spell. But she was worn enough to turn and flee with the dragon. Off they flew, fear roused and compelling. 

"Phew. Now we have to find the good dragons. Maybe the fairies know where they are. I know where the fairies are. They are at home. Over here! This is where they live. Can you see them? It is hard because they are playing hide and seek. They love hide and seek and tag just like I love hide and seek and tag. But they are there. You can't talk to them though. Only me."

Obediently, mom stays a few steps back while she learns where the dragons can be found. Momentarily, she returns confident in her informants. 

"They say we can find them by the water."

The pair approach the creek, alert to signs of danger. Seeing none, she throws a few magic balls as calling cards into the water and then waits on the bank. 

"I think we are going to have to go on an adventure."

"Aha! I knew it! Another bad dragon! He is so big! I am going to use my powers to make him smaller and smaller and smaller." 


"I think you need more magic! Hold up your magic!"

The dragon shrank down to the size of a small barn-swallow, which gave her an idea. 

"Let's put him in a nest. Then a mommy can come and teach him so when he gets big again he won't be so bad." 

She gently lifted the tiny foul creature and placed him in a bird's nest.

"They'll come now."

Sure enough, three dragons came flying toward us, just above the creek. One was carrying a baby dragon. She lead them to our picnic area. 

"C'mon! C'mon! Let's go guys! I have a tea party basket!"

We sat on the soft grass and shared pizza and drumsticks and the best cheese you can imagine. She poured tea for everyone except the baby. She fed him a bottle of milk and a cookie. 

A tiny kitten came and tried to drink the baby dragon's milk. The baby dragon got mad and tried to burn up the kitty, but he couldn't. Baby dragons can only do smoke. His mommy had to tell him not to scare kitties. 

She poured a small dish of milk for the kitten and told her mother that the kitten did not have a mommy. Could she please take it home? Seeing as the dragon would not stay a baby forever, and not trusting him to learn to control his temper before he could control his fire, she agreed. 

They said goodbye to their dear friends the dragons, and set off for home carrying a small but well fed baby kitten. 

And they even made it home on time to meet her big sister's bus. 

Sparkles and mud. That's how we roll. 

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Laundry and Sisyphus

My phone was dying, so I went upstairs to plug it into the last undamaged phone charger in the house. I found my charger bathing in a nice, cool glass of water. Not floating or toe dipping, but fully submerged.

My logic is not always perfect. I thought to myself that if my phone was going to die, I had better get my important phone calls out of the way quickly! Sarah has gone into SVT three times in the past week. The doctor wants to go ahead with the ablation procedure which we have thus far been successfully postponing with medicine. He also increased her dose of medicine, so it did not feel urgent. Still, I have to schedule it; surgeons are always busy for months so we have to get on the calendar asap.  I called his nurse. 

"Wednesday," she says. 

Wait. What? Wednesday? As in less than a week away Wednesday? I know he wanted it done, but that soon? 

She hopped off the phone to double-check that yes, the surgeon wanted Sarah in that soon and indeed he did. Wednesday. Apparently, this was a drop-everything-and-handle-this moment, not a put-it-on-the-overfull-calendar moment. So, phone battery low, I didn't argue. Heart surgeon wants to do ths procedure now? We will do this procedure now. I am on it. 

Except that I am not, really. This will be the frst time Sarah has had something serious done since my anxiety took its ugly consuming form. Will I be able to handle it? All else being equal, this is a pretty good procedure to jump back in with. (Leave my preposition alone.  I like it there.) It is a common procedure. It is not even called a surgery. They go in through the femoral artery and thread up to the heart. They try to induce the SVT and then they watch and see what is misfiring. Then they fix it. Still, it is uner general anethesia and they are messing with her heart. 

I decided that the task of reclaiming some bit of order in my home would go a long way toward keeping my brain from going haywire. So, I sorted six tons (as measured by my super-woman biceps) of paperwork and admired the sheer volume of medical mail we get. Non-medical stuff often gets lost in the shuffle. For instance, I found the invitation to the wedding we attended last week! Yay! A little late. 

Then I got out the vaccum. I like my vaccuum. It is brand new. About a decade ago we were given a used Hoover when someone else replaced it with something better. That has been our vacuum since then and it has served us well. But for the past several months, it has needed a new belt about once a month. This is an easy fix, so we dealt with it until my husband and I admitted to one another that in our heart of hearts, we both secretly really wanted to replace it. So, we did not replace the belt this time, we replaced the vacuum. We bought a brand new, well-reviewed Shark on Amazon. Oh, I was excited. Why are vacuums denigrated as gifts? What fun! It is all shiny and new and functional! It is light! I can carry it upstairs without breaking our my not-really-real super-woman biceps. Man,  I like ths vacuum. A week in, everthing is awesome. Not Lego awesome, but nearly. As soon as we have established the awesomeness of our new vacuum, I popped the old one on a freecycle-like page with full disclosure about its age and difficultes. It was snapped up in under five minutes. Out with the old!

 Back to yesterday. Yesterday as I am vacumming to save my sanity with my shiny new vacuum when the darn thing turns off. No excuse. No warning. No broken belt. It just turns off. A small voice inside me cries out, "That is what you get for trying to save your sanity with house chores!" But I silence the voice. Appliances are supposed to work. Vacuuming is supposed to be the uninteresting but predictable and easy part of the day.  

By now, Amazon same-day-delivery has delivered a brand new charger. Thank you Amazon, for always being there for me. So my phone is charging again. I can get back to the phone calls. I am a little hesitant because I hate getting on the phone and the last time  I attempted this chore, it grew. Freaking cardiologist. 

Not really. He is awesome. Kind of a rock star, actually, in his way. But the one phone call to schedule the one had thing turned into many phone calls to cancel and reschedule many things. I did it. I called my therapist and rescheduled our first appointment again. (Third time. I bet she thinks I am chickening out.) I called my dentist and rescheduled my appointment and my husbands, since they were back to back. I rescheduled Becca's dentist appointment. I canceled everything on Wednesday. Then, even though it is supposed to be outpatient, I cancelled everything on Thursday too. There is a chance that they will want to monitor Sarah overnight after the procedure, and I know my kid. So, I am kind of planning to spend a night in the hospital. 

The I get back to the order reclamation. Laundry is a good choice. No matter how many times you do it, it still remains to be done. Laundry will save my sanity. 

Fresh, clean, damp clothes pile into my dryer and.... the dryer will not turn on. The appliance gods are toying with me, a mere mortal with a sisyphean task. 

Undeterred by their spite, I decided not to touch any more appliances of any kind. I choose a chore which does not require them. I accomplished a task. A real task. Becca needed a dresser. I had one that was mostly full of clothing I don't wear. I don't mind if things are not always put away, but I cannot stand it when there is no away to put them. Becca and Lily have been sharing a dresser and it is not big enough for two people. I emptied, moved and refilled a dresser. All by myself. 

Now, Bob Marley is happening in my head. Every little thing is gonna be alright. Brains are unpredictable creatures. I guess appliances are too.