Sunday, July 30, 2006

Blogathon Recap

Well, it's over. We did it. I stayed up all night to blog for the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund over at Stale Betty. Last I checked, we had raised $1800. And they're still taking last minute donations over at the Blogathon site.

It was actually much harder to post every half hour than I thought it would be. For one thing, I was really sleepy and more than a little punchy. For another, I was so riddled with anxiety that I would be the one to miss a post and mess it up, that I got the shakes as every half hour drew near.

Or maybe it was just all the junk food I was eating.

Mad props go out to Daniel for keeping us motivated with behind the scenes commentary and pictures of hot guys. He picked this one out just for me.

Do you think he knows me at all?

Very special thanks to Betty and the Mil Wives team. And extra special thanks to all of my friends and readers who sponsored us.

I have to admit that I'm a little extra proud that my predominately gay readership pulled through so hard for a military cause. It just goes to prove what especially wonderful people you all are. I often feel like my life is so fractured between two worlds. This was an excellent example of how maybe it doesn't have to be.

I love you guys (and girls too).

Okay. On to my normal fucked up blogging material. Thank you and goodnight.

Come Play with Me!

In about a half hour, I'll take my turn blogging for the IFHF over at Stale Betty.

Patrick thinks I should go rogue and blog about nothing but sex and homos.

But I'm a good girl and only act out if I'm encouraged. So come cheer me on, people. Pour me a virtual vodka and see what I'll do!

Damn, I need to pee before I start.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

And they're off!

Blogathon starts right now on Stale Betty.

Go check it out!

We've raised $1625 so far. Awesome. There is still time to sponsor us. Click the button on the sidebar.

I'm going back to sleep.

p.s. If you sponsored us but never clicked the link in the Blogathon verification e-mail, please let Betty know. She'll help you take care of it. Thanks!

Friday, July 28, 2006


Getting a call from the military police at 2:30 in the morning is disconcerting to say the least.

They asked me to wake up my husband. It turns out that it was just a mistake. But no matter.

The adrenaline was pumping anyway.

Don't worry. We put it to good use.

And then I was able to sleep like a baby.

A big 'ole naked baby.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Hag Math

My husband came home from his flight tonight and asked me what I did today.

I thought for a moment and then replied, "Nothing. I didn't do a freaking thing."

It was raining. The kids were busy playing games and watching videos. But, other than making meals and loading the dishwasher...well. Where the hell did my day go?

Then the phone rang. Patrick again. Our friend J is visiting him from out-of-town and they're hitting the stores and going to a fancy fashion event.

Hmm, let's see. Let's check the call log on my phone. Shall we?

He called me eleven times today. Eleven!

The calls started with descriptions of clothes and idle chit chat. They ended with him drunkenly slurring out a confession of the bad thing he did.

Oh, and let's not forget the text messages. There are five of those. And six picture mails!

The pictures start out of their shopping trip. I guess I was kind of long distance consulting. And they ended with a picture of someone's penis.

I don't know whose. I don't want to know.

All I know is that eleven phone calls and eleven messages from your best friend can really take a chunk out of your day. And cost me about five bucks!

Which I guess is pretty cheap to get all the details of what happened in the men's room.

Not that I'm saying...I'm just saying.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Places to Go, People to See

I went to send Lee a birthday E-card today (Happy birthday, Lee!) and I got distracted. You know I love Hoops & Yoyo (with an especially funny intro this month) and now they have a blog!

Blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog, blog!


An old military wife friend of mine has her own web business now. When my kids were born, she sent along really cute homemade hooded towel sets for each of them. They still use their "baby" towels. Now she's selling all kinds of baby stuff at Bella KraKa.


We've hit $1500 worth of sponsors for Blogathon. I'm amazed! Stale Betty's got all the info. My military wife team will be blogging every thirty minutes for 24 hours on July 29 to support the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund. Join me over at Stale Betty in the middle of the night (Sunday morning actually) between 2 and 5 a.m. while I try and stay awake and not embarrass myself. I'll probably be posting some stuff here too.


Actual blogging to recommence soon.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006


I think I broke my husband.

Damn it. He was a perfectly good husband too.

We were getting ready for bed last night when I noticed something that made me gasp.

I didn't mean to gasp out loud. It just happened. I'd take it back if I could.

I tried to cover.

I put my hand on his chest. I kissed him.

"What?" he asked.

"Nothing.'re sexy. Yup. Sexy."

I tried to kiss him again. He wasn't having any of it.

He went to the mirror to see what I had gasped about it. He insisted that I tell him.

"Well, it's just...I think it's sexy."

"What is?" he practically yelled.

"That gray hair on your chest."

Yup. I broke him.

Oh, to take back that gasp.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Blogathon Reminder!

There are less than five days until this weekend's Blogathon. I'll be blogging with a team of eight military wives over at Stale Betty to raise funds for the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund.

Our wonderful readers have pledged $1388 so far! Thank you so much!

There's still time to give if you'd like. Click on that button over there at the top of my sidebar to pledge or go to Stale Betty for more information.

You guys rock so hard. Fishy kisses to all.

A Party in the Life of a Military Wife

The commander's wife called me on Friday.

"Hello! I'm just calling to introduce myself. I'm the wife of the squadron commander," she began.

"Oh, of course," I replied.

I couldn't think of how else to reply since not only had she introduced herself to me before, but she had given me a very nice welcome gift and spent an hour or so chatting with me at a squadron event.

"I wanted to make sure you received the invitation for tomorrow's party," she continued.

"Yes, I did. And we're looking forward to it."

She went on about the party and what to bring. She asked about my kids. And after a couple of minutes she asked, "Do you know any of the other student's wives?"


I was stuck now. I don't know any of the student's wives because my husband isn't a student. I had let her go on and on (she talks really fast) without correcting her and then I just didn't know how to weave my way out of it.

I finished up with, "Okay, well, thanks for calling. I'll see you tomorrow."

I figured if she was embarrassed when she realized her faux pas, it would be her own fault for not checking her information before making phone calls.

The invitation promised a kiddy pool and a sand box (not a very smart combination) so we put the kids in swim suits, brought changes of clothes, and set off to the fancy part of town with our famous pasta salad tucked under my arm.

We were the first to arrive, so we drove right by the driveway and circled the subdivision checking out the real estate for fifteen minutes. I hate to be the first to arrive.

The first family I recognized when we were crowded in the living room was one that we had known years ago. The last time I saw the wife, we both had newborn baby boys. I remember thinking at the time that someday she'd have a brat on her hands.

Sometimes you can tell, just by how a mother is with her newborn, that the baby will someday grow up and be the head of that family.

I was so right.

My husband is a very shy person. Even among his peers, he'd rather just find a place to sit with me and talk. So we headed to the backyard with the kids.

And as soon as I opened the back door, I was run over by at least a dozen children making a break for it.

Who the hell made us the day care providers? Most of the other parents didn't even stay outside to keep an eye on their kids.

When my husband went inside to get us some drinks, the commander's wife sidled over to my place on the patio. She made small talk for a moment then said, "I think we've met before, actually. I don't recognize you, but I remember your husband from"

"From the Cinco de Mayo party at the squadron," I supplied.

That's a new one for us. Since he's so quiet (and in uniform, they all look alike), people are more likely to remember meeting me.

She made more small talk and then just walked away abruptly.

When my husband came back, I told him my story. "Why would she recognize you before me, I wonder? What? Do I look so different?"

"Yes," my husband replied. "You've lost so much weight."

It's nice that he's finally learning the script. But, come on. I stared at him until we both burst out laughing.

"Come on. That was a good one. You can't make me laugh!" he said.

Soon we were joined by a younger single guy. My husband introduced us by telling me that the guy was soon leaving to go to pilot training and that he would be very missed in the squadron. That was kind of sweet, in a really macho way.

When my husband went to refill our plates, the guy made a special point to tell me that my husband had told him that I was behind all of his writing talent. "He says he'd be nothing without you," this random guy told me.

I could only reply with an, "Awwww." How many husbands would tell people that?

And is it weird that of all the people at the party, I felt the most comfortable with the young, handsome, single guy? There were cute little wives in cute little tops and shorts and cute little shoes with cute little kids all over the damn place. And I didn't feel compelled to talk to any of them.

This could be why I don't have any friends.

It's just another party in a life of hundreds of these parties. The commanders change. The places change. The faces change. But they're all the same.

And party after party I find myself and my husband sitting together on the couch or patio, talking only to those who make a point to talk to us.

And I always drive home, as the husband usually has a couple of beers.

And after the kids are tucked away or the babysitter is paid, we almost always make love.

We're in this thing together. The deployments, the long hours, the stress, the moves.

And even the parties.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

This post is brought to you by...

It's product placement day here at Tuna Girl. These are some of the things the Tuna clan can't live without.

Neutrogena Cooling Mist Sunblock SPF 45: The daughter and I are pasty white. And we like it that way. Our milky white skin is best for showing off our freckles. This sunblock rocks. And it's easy to apply.

Speaking of stuff that really works...

Febreeze Air Effects: Our house stinks. Believe me. Between the oppressive smell of swamp that permeates the entire state and the scent that lingers from my husband's never-washed hockey bag, not to mention Buffy's contribution to the olfactory offense, sometimes I feel like I live in a locker room. A few pffts of Air Effects and it's all gone.

In fact I'm a sucker for...

Febreeze anything including Scent Stories, Tide, and Downey: The son hits the play button on the Scent Stories whenever he smells something he doesn't like. He's the stink police. And the laundry stuff can even get the musty smell out of clothes that have been washed but left wet in the machine for a week.

But so you don't think I never clean at all, we also love our...

Dyson vacuum: The best sucker of all time. And the best $450 we ever spent at the BX. But our carpets are pretty clean anyway. I swear, because we have a...

Ionic Breeze Quadra Air Purifier: I've had house guests who have told their friends about the dust-free state of my house. Seriously. And it's not because I'm working the Pledge and a rag. Believe me. My mother-in-law sent us one for Christmas. Best. Gift. Ever.

And now I have to throw in this one...

Tampax Super Plus (orange box): Considering all the Google searches I get for "tuna tampons" and "bloody tampons", I thought I'd let you know what's under my sink. And under the sink of every house I frequent. I even have some hidden away at his apartment that he'll never ever find.

When I'm using my Super Plus's I usually like to load up on...

General Foods International Coffees Viennese Chocolate Cafe: My daily does of 26 mg of caffeine, only available locally at Target. Actually, I've given this up for the most part. Now I only drink it as an occasional treat.

But this summer, my treat of choice has been...

PopSicle Sugar Free Tropicals: Yummy for moms and kids. With only 15 calories, these are actually zero Weight Watchers points. But how many points are they if you eat five at a time?

Speaking of zero points, I recently gave up drinking...

Diet Coke: Must they tempt me with all of these new flavors? I've learned that as long as I have a Diet Coke in the house, I won't freak out. I don't want to drink it. I just have to know that I could. I actually had nightmares while I was in NYC this summer that I couldn't find a single Diet Coke in the whole city.

And since I like to keep comfy year round...

Cuffy's Sweats: Like a warm hug from a good friend. There's nothing like turning the AC up to 67 and snuggling with my Cuffy's hoodie. And they now have an online store!

Cuffy's is Cape Cod and vacation time to me. And what better way to capture those then with my...

Cannon Digital Elph: Because there is nothing better than a decent quality digital camera that I can keep in my purse.

Speaking of expensive things in my purse...

iPod: Mine's a sad little 3rd generation 40G. But I still don't know how I ever lived without it.

And now my sad little iPod gets to hang out in a brand new...

Bose SoundDock: Yay for birthdays! If you think your music sounds good through those little ear buds, you should hear it projected through your home with the Bose speakers. Awesome.

And how do I have the time to listen to my music?

Anything featuring Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends: For the boy. And...

Littlest Pet Shop dot com: For the girl.

And when things get a little too crazy...

Grey Goose vodka: For me. And...

Jack Daniels: For the Tuna Man.

And since we're horny but sloppy drunks, let us not forget the most important thing...

The Hitachi Magic Wand makes me happy.

What can't you live without?

True Love

Tonight on his way home from the gym, my husband stopped at the shoppette and used the change in his truck to buy me a PMS Special.

That's mint chocolate chip ice cream, Pringles, and a king size Snickers bar.

That's true love, y'all.



Maybe those are the actions of a man who's been married for a long time and knows how to take preemptive sweet and salty action to keep the peace.

Sly little fucker.

That makes me love him even more.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Save the Drama for the Mama

I freaked out today.

I really and truly had a complete freak out.

My husband and the exterminator showed up together right in the middle of said freak out.

The bug man went about his business and pretended not to notice, though he looked quite uncomfortable.

The husband just sort of stared at me for a while.

Then he got on the phone and fixed my problem. At least for the time being.

Maybe it was karmic payback for the freak out I caused my husband this weekend.

Who is the marketing genius who decided that highway billboards are the best place to advertise vasectomy reversals? While men are confined with their offspring for a long road trip is not the most opportune time to hit them up to have another kid.

As we drove by one of these signs I asked my husband, "So, do you want to have another one?"

He swallowed his tongue. He drove the van off the highway in his panic. His head spun around three times and his eyes popped out.

Okay. That's not true. Except for the eyes popping out part.

We had a great weekend with the kids. They haven't stopped talking about it. But my return to reality has been a hard fall.

I'm a little sore. But I'll be back to myself in no time. Unless my husband decides to again say, "Now I know where the kids get their drama from." Then I'll be in jail for spousal abuse.

Addendum: Patrick called me last night. He wanted to know if my freak out sounded like this:

"...where's the cheese on these goddamn fucking fries?"

There's a reason why we're friends. And it goes beyond our love of Sam Tyson's tattoo.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Don't let the door hit you on the way out.

It's back to school time.

What? No way. It's the middle of July! Tuna Girl, you trippin'.

Yup. It's 104 degrees here, and I had to go by the school today to drop off all of the back to school forms and a check for $190 that I don't have. School starts on August 9. I just love living in the South.

Things are changing around here so fast. In just three weeks, the kids will both be in school five days a week. I have a whole mess of preschool-3 and first grade stuff to clear out of here. And the boy will soon get to have some of his own activities like soccer and violin.

But I noticed the biggest change last night when I was filling out all of the school forms.

Every year we have to list three emergency contacts. And since our school doesn't have busses, they suggest that these contacts be people who can pick your kids up from school in an emergency.

Last year I listed AH who was at the school a couple of hours a day anyway. No, she didn't work there. She just missed her first grader that much and spent lunch and recess with her most days.

I also listed CB who I would trust with my kids' lives.

And I put my parents in the last spot since they used to visit enough to pick the kids up on occasion.

So, my parents are still on the list, though I don't expect them to visit as much this year.

But CB is gone now. My kids got a post card from her kids the other day. It was sweet. CB is really going through some tough times and I miss her.

And AH is leaving.

Did you hear that? My nemesis is moving on. I won't be seeing her, listening to her gossip, or avoiding her nosy questions every single day anymore. Woo hoo! Happy dance!

Except, fuck.

I have no other emergency contacts. I have no other close friends. I spent so much energy on AH that I never cultivated deeper friendships.

I swear I'm going to make an effort to make better friends with SW this year. There's also a mom who lives down the street who I really like. She's one of a small cross section of military moms who are also school moms and I need to seek more like her out and make friends.

My long distance friends are wonderful. My blog friends are incredible. But I can't keep living in isolation.

I've said this before, but I always had AH as my very annoying safety net. Now it's time to take the leap and let some real life people meet the real me.

Friday, July 14, 2006


Sometimes I just want to retreat into my little four-person family and shut out the rest of the world.

I am so angry right now.

Sometimes I wonder if I expect too much from people.

My daughter's birthday came and went, and, well, she got more birthday wishes from my blog friends than her family.

Grandma says she was "too busy" to get to the mall. At least she called. We haven't even heard from anyone else in the family. This kid has uncles, aunts, cousins, godparents and great grandparents, you know.

I'm not even looking for presents here. Just a card would have made her happy. Hell, they could have folded a piece of notebook paper in half and made a card and she would have been thrilled. They could have E-mailed or called and she would have been ecstatic.

The only person who came through was my mother-in-law. She sent clothes, a book, not one but two cards (one funny, one sweet--Now I know where my husband gets it from.), and even called to wish her a happy birthday. And the first words out of my daughter's mouth when she got on the phone were, "Thank you so much for my dress!"

What's my daughter's take on her birthday? A day that was highlighted by a cupcake, three gifts from us, Chinese food for dinner, and violin practice?

"Mommy," she kept saying. "This is the best day of my life!"

I may sound petulant and spoiled but someone has to. Clearly she's too busy being happy and well-adjusted to see the injustice.

It wasn't until she was safely tucked away for the night that I even realized how angry I was. When I found myself crying I realized just how hurt I was feeling. It's one thing to ignore my birthday year after year. But this is my kid! She deserves way more.

A couple of months ago, she asked us if we could go to Sea World this year for her birthday, instead of having a party. We readily agreed. Sea World is one of my favorite places on Earth and they have free admission for military this year.

So if I ever get over my tiff and start packing, we'll be leaving in the morning for San Antonio. When did a seven-hour drive become a weekend trip for us?

At least I'll have plenty of time in my little four-person family bubble. I'm going to appreciate the hell out of my little fold this weekend. I've got myself a pretty awesome little family.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Say Goodbye to Six

It wasn't even seven a.m. yet and I already had to warn my daughter, "Just because it's your birthday doesn't mean you can't be punished."

Ah. Welcome to seven, baby girl.

It's only past nine a.m. now and I had to take a moment's break from the kids. Admittedly, I escaped to my room (leaving Buffy in charge) to wrap my daughter's gifts. But I also felt the need to sit down and write just a bit. I need to put aside my frustration and let it all go.

All of her drama might get to me from time to time, but my little girl really is just too wonderful for words. She's put up with a lot, and sacrificed even more in her barely seven years, and she deserves to have a special day to herself. Even if it means that Mommy grows a few more gray hairs.

She likes to read over my shoulder now. If she happens to catch this I want her to know...

May all your leaps be fearless.
May all your pirouettes be free.
May every kick be your hardest.
May every note ring on key.
May every picture be a masterpiece.
May you become what you want to be.
May you find love and life and laughter.
And may you never turn into me.

I love you, baby girl. Happy birthday.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Seeing Red

While I was sweating my ass off at the gym yesterday, parked strategically in front of ESPN so I could ignore the CMT, I saw a recap of the World Cup.

Besides the fact that soccer players are hot and love to whip off their clothes, I was especially fascinated by one aspect of the game.

The red card.

Have you noticed that the red card possesses almost magical powers that make even the most angry athlete back down with just a pout?

I rarely watch soccer, except of the six-year-old girl variety where there is no such thing as a foul, so I was amazed by this.

Can you imagine a hockey ref whipping out a red card during a fight and actually expecting those guys to back down? Hockey refs usually end up on the ice grappling with the combatants. (Is anyone else getting moist?)

Wouldn't it be wonderful if the red card worked in life?

Someone tries to cut you in line at the deli and you flash a yellow card. If they don't back down, out comes the red and they walk away looking indignant but accepting their fate.

Some guy puts the moves on you and gets a little obnoxious so the bartender holds up a yellow card. And then if his hands go places they shouldn't, well, he's just asking for a red card.

And oh dear lord! What if it worked on kids? There would be no more room time outs or screaming marches up the stairs. All I'd have to do is flash the red card and they'd immediately go to their corners.

I think I'm going to buy a couple of those cards. And a whistle, because those are just hot. I'll carry them around in my purse and the next time I feel the need to confront a stranger in public, I'll just whip out my cards.

So when you read that I'm stuck in the looney bin, please just call and explain to them, "No, she had a genius idea. It's from soccer. Yeah, I didn't think it was funny either, but she had to write about something."

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Bad Mommy! Bad!

I know I'm not supposed to say this anymore. But to hell with it!

I am a bad, bad, bad mother.

I left my kids and my dog with my parents so I could go gallivanting, and this is what happens.



Buffy was so full of mats from her ten day stay with my parents that she had to be shaved down. Poor little freakish looking thing. I'm going to buy her a sweater.

Buffy the Hairless Wonder Puppy

In other news, you guys are amazing! Did I say I wanted to raise $1000 for the IFHF before July 29? Yeah, well, we did that yesterday! Thanks to you. I am completely overwhelmed. And I got a little choked up when the pledges started pouring in just a few minutes after I posted about the Blogathon.

You rock!

There's still time to sponsor my Military Wives team for Blogathon '06 as we raise funds for the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund. Click on the button over there in my sidebar for all the information. Help us spread the word. Thank you!

Blogathon '06

Monday, July 10, 2006

Give till it Feels Good

In my last couple of years of blogging, I've been asked one question more than any other.*

"How can we support the troops?"

This question is usually asked after a blog friend has assured me that although he strongly opposes any war, he completely supports the troops.

There have been many occasions when people have asked me about the best military charity. And I always had to answer that I didn't really know. My sacrifice to the troops starts right here at home. I reserve most of my monetary giving for AIDS charities and the kids' school.

But now I finally have an answer.

On Saturday, July 29th, I will be participating in the annual Blogathon with six truly admirable Military Wives over at Stale Betty. Together we will blog every 30 minutes for 24 hours to raise money for the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund.

The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund foundation originally began in 2001 as an effort to provide financial support to the families of fallen soldiers. Back then, the death gratuity and life insurance was meager so the IFHF stepped up to offer their support.

In 2005, Congress made changes to both the death gratuity and life insurance to better aid the families left behind. This change also changed the IFHF's mission. Since the families were now being cared for, the IFHF refocused it's energies on the men and women returning from war with severe medical problems such as brain injuries, limb loss, burns, etc. They contacted the VA and the military and asked what they could do to help and from there they decided to build a 65,000 square foot rehabilitation and advanced training center on the grounds of Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas.

"The Center for the Intrepid is for traumatic amputee patients, burn patients requiring advanced rehabilitation, and service members undergoing limb salvage techniques."

Construction has begun and is scheduled for completion in January of 2007 but the IFHF still needs donations to purchase medical equipment and supplies and to provide facilities for patients' children.

"One hundred percent of the contributions will continue to go to these services, with nothing taken out for the Fund's administrative costs."

Personally, I can't think of a better way to support our troops. By aiding the IFHF, you are showing your support of military members in their most critical hour. In fact, according to the foundation:

"The land for the center has been set aside by the Army, and the armed services will maintain the Center after it is opened. However, it was critical to us at the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund that our troops and their families see that the American people, not the government, funded building the Center so that everyone in the armed services would understand that we the people never waiver in supporting our men and women in uniform serving this country."

How can you help? Simple. Visit the Blogathon website and sign up to sponsor us. Our team name is Betty and the Mil Wives. Any dollar amount is appreciated. Come back on July 29th to be entertained and play along in the mystery game we have planned. You might even win something!

After the event, you will receive an email from Blogathon with the link to the donation page on the IFHF website. You will be asked to donate directly to the IFHF either through their online form or via snail mail. It doesn't get much easier than that!

The Mil Wives have raised $380 so far. My personal goal is to double that amount by the end of the week and raise at least $1000 over all.

I know that my readership here is composed of a slightly different demographic that most of the other wives on my Blogathon team. And I think that this is an excellent opportunity to show how much my guys care about their fellow man. Besides, I really, really, really don't want to be the slacker on the team.

Please give what you can, no matter what the amount. And spread the word, if you can. I can't tell you how much I'd appreciate it.

And while you're in the giving mood, spread the love over to Mark who is participating in the AIDS Arms Life Walk in memory of a dear friend of his, and Jake who is training to run the AIDS marathon this year.

Can't you just feel the love?

*That's not really true. The number one question asked of me is, "Why did you call you blog Tuna Girl?" But I can only tell you that if I meet you in person.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Banging All Night Long

My son has a disturbing sleep disorder that causes him to rock and bang his head in certain stages of sleep.

It is not a big deal. Supposedly. Children have hard skulls and he'll stop before he hurts himself. And he's supposed to grow out of it by age five.

I'm counting the nights.

No wonder I don't sleep.

Sometimes, I get a little overwhelmed by the whole thing. I've tried just simply telling him not to do it. I've tried telling him why he shouldn't do it. Yet I know it is completely involuntary.

Last night when I put him to bed I actually begged him. "Please, buddy. Please, please try to not bang your head tonight."

"But why, Mommy?" he asked. "You do it."

"I do not."

"Yes, you do, Mommy. I hear you. I hear *buzz*, *buzz* and then bang, bang, bang, and then like ah, ah and *groan*"

*crickets chirping*

His air vent is closed now. It's time to sound-proof our bedroom.

Our next house will have a remote master suite. Until then, I'm padding the headboard and biting a pillow. In fact, I may never have sex again.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Stiff as a...

My husband asked me a question yesterday that I just couldn't answer.

"Are you bored?"

You see, I haven't been sleeping. At all.

Actually, that's a lie. I don't sleep at night. So I have an extremely difficult time getting up in the morning. And I keep dozing off during the day.

My husband's theory is that I am so bored with my life, that I can't get out of bed.

My first instinct was to screech back at him, "Of course I'm bored!" I mean, I'm a housewife, right? Don't "bored" and "housewife" go hand in hand? Or at least the porn ads say so.

For the last seven years (maybe longer) I have been living my life for other people. And that's okay. It really is. I love my life. But scraping together meals that don't make my kids cry and navigating a Lego minefield every afternoon are not my idea of exciting.

Aren't we all bored in life? Aren't you?

So I spent my sleepless night last night contemplating this question. And trying to come up with some solutions.

And the truly sad fact of my life is that there is nothing I'm really excited about.

Or at least, there is nothing I could envision being excited about that fits into my schedule.

Is there really and truly nothing that I love to do so much that I'd make time for it no matter what?

Could sex count as a hobby?

How about daydreaming? Could that count as a passion?

Do I really suck this much?

Yeah. Don't answer that.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Dirty Little Secrets

Recently, a friend of mine said to me, "Maybe you could write about some of the stuff that you won't put in the blog."

I looked at him for a moment. And then we both laughed.

"You think there's anything I won't write about on my blog?"

But, I've realized in the last week, since I escaped drove home from my parents, that I really do have a lot of secrets.

For one thing, I will never admit to having any actual goals or dreams. Admitting that you have your heart or mind set on something, and then failing is just too humiliating. In fact, there are quite a few things that I do in secret in support of my goals that absolutely no one in my life knows about. No one.

I also have little routines that I've fallen into over the years that I keep secret. I think it's a byproduct of spending too much time alone while my husband is deployed.

And last but not least, I have the little things I do that I'll never admit to because they don't line up with my stated values.

For example, I claim not to care about appearances. I vow that I will grow old gracefully without fighting it. I swore that I'd be happy when I finally looked my age.

But then I aged at least ten years during 2005. That was a bad year for me. So I've started using wrinkle cream around my battered looking eyes.

It was my darkest little secret until I let my husband in on it.

Later that same day, my hip creaked as I stepped over a toy. I made that universal old woman sound of pain and sat down.

"You're getting old," my husband said.

"Tell me about it," I replied in good humor.

"But at least your eyes look good."

Deathly silence followed.

"Come here," I beckoned. "I'm going to slap the fucking shit out of you."

That's the last time I let him in on a secret. Dirty or otherwise.

Monday, July 03, 2006


Sometimes I feel like I live in two completely different worlds. Almost like I'm two different people.

The one me is the suburban housewife. The military mom. The private school stay-at-home mother who carries a nice handbag but doesn't dress all that great.

The other me is the writer. The cute, sweet, fat, funny girl with tons of handsome gay cohorts. The fun-loving friend who carries a nice handbag but doesn't dress all that great.

But both of those people have to live inside of me. And sometimes their paths cross.

Going to New York to visit my best friend and attend some Pride events was a big deal for me. I had to take a leap. I had to leave my kids behind with my parents and I had to get over the overwhelming guilt of doing so.

But everything I told myself to get over the guilt only sounded like rationalizing to me in the end. So I spent my time in New York really enjoying myself, but hating myself all the while.

Patrick and I did so much together. Mostly, we walked around different parts of the city, but we were together. Mostly, we drank too much, but we were celebrating and letting go. Mostly we got along great, but we annoyed each other too. I think whenever we spend time together, we push our friendship just a little. Maybe we're testing its bounds. Maybe we're testing it's bonds. Maybe we're seeing where friends end and family begins. Or maybe my guilt and self-hatred just bubbles over too damn much.

I have a crappy memory, so I was glad when Patrick posted a recap of our time together. I mostly remember embarrassing myself. Not because I was drunk (although I did a little of that too). But because I had an audience. I've learned that about myself recently. Give me an audience and I will perform. I'll say things and do things that I'm embarrassed by later. I'm not really sure how I feel about that yet. Let's add it to the guilt and self-loathing pile and deal with it later.

But I do remember holding myself back. A lot. I know that I'll say deep things or ask pointed questions that make people uncomfortable. I've always done that. So when I feel the urge, I try to hold back. And then I lament later on all of the things I should have said.

While Cyndi Lauper was singing True Colors at Broadway Bares, I wanted to let Patrick know that I was crying instead of trying to hide it. I wanted to put my arms around him and whisper in his ear, "I love you." But I didn't.

When I saw Patrick round the last corner at the Pride Run, I wanted to scream and hoot and holler. A quick look at my watch showed that he was on pace to beat his goal. I was so proud of him. But I didn't want to embarrass him. So I just yelled, "Go Patrick!" and scooted off to the finish line to let him know that I was there so he wouldn't go home to his locked apartment without me.

When I finally found him at the finish line, I wanted to hug him and tell him how proud I was. And I did. But I also wanted to tell him how much he inspired me. But I couldn't. I never did. I don't know why.

While we were watching the Pride parade and chatting with a sweet elderly woman, I wanted to grab his hand and tell him how angry it made me that his family would never show him how proud they were of him. If they were even proud at all. I wanted to tell him that his new family would never let him be hurt. But no one can make that promise, no matter how hard they love. So I didn't say anything at all.

And that last night, after watching him work his mojo as a volunteer at a Pier Dance bar, I wanted to tell him how proud I was of him. I wanted to hug him and watch the fireworks and tell him that this is what Pride means to me. That all of the corporate marketing and drugged-up circuit boys and hateful protesters don't take one iota away from the fact that I'm proud of how far he's come in the last 36 years. And that this is the time to celebrate it.

Patrick was in utero during the Stonewall riots. That seems fitting to me somehow.

During Pride I became very, very aware of the fact that your average straight person knows very little of gay history. Oh, most have heard of Matthew Shepherd. Most know that Rock Hudson had AIDS. Most know that there was a time when Hollywood celebrities all wore red ribbons.

But would you believe that I didn't even know that Keith Haring was gay? Never mind that he died of AIDS. I only learned about Stonewall about three years ago. And I only learned about Pride in the last couple of years.

And now I look around at my friends and while I am overwhelmingly proud of every last one of them, I'm left asking myself, "But what can I do?"

My daughter and I finally had a discussion about what the word gay means. And I had to tell her that she would hear kids use the words gay and fag as an insult. And that kills me! It makes me rage!

I need to think more about this.

I need to think more about what to say when people tell fag jokes. I need to think more about what part I can play.

I need to think more about my responsibility.

But while I'm thinking, I'll try to be brave enough to tell my best friend just how proud I am of him. Even if it makes him uncomfortable. And I'll try to find a way to let my husband know that I am proud of his views and attitudes. And I'll try to teach my kids to be proud of who they are.

And I guess while I'm at it I should try to be more proud of myself too. It takes a lot of skill and bravery to merge together my two worlds. I'm not so great at it yet. But I'm trying. And the two women who live inside of me? Well. They have one thing in common.

They love really hard. And that is something to be proud of.