Thursday, March 29, 2007

Point your chin to heaven and think of handbags.

Once upon a time, Will and Grace had an exchange that went something like this:

Grace: I'm getting a Belgian wax.
Will: A Belgian wax? What's a Belgian wax?
Grace: It's a regular old wax but it hurts so much I treat myself to a Belgian waffle afterwards.

Well, I just had a Grande Mocha Frappacino and Chocolate Chip Cookie laser treatment.

God fucking damn, that shit hurts!

Who knew my Lamaze training would come in handy for hair removal?

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Empathy Lives Here

Patrick once told me about a theory his mom developed. She thought that very empathetic people could actually take on the heavy emotions of loved ones when those loved ones needed help baring the burden.

I think that is a lovely sentiment. But it is a little too touchy-feely, new-agey for me. While I believe strongly in the power of real love, I think most things come down to solid actions and communication.

Still, much like horoscopes--which I don't believe in, yet still read every day and marvel over their accuracy--I'm amazed by how often this seems true.

For example, before Patrick's surgery I felt this constant, raging anger for absolutely no reason. While he was as calm, cool, and collected as someone in his position could possibly be.

And remember that funk I was in just a bit ago? Well, Patrick suffered through a debilitating writer's block at the time. (Bet you couldn't tell.) Now he's cruising along with his writing again, and I think he has passed his block onto me.

My husband is struggling with the class he is teaching right now. I don't like to talk too much about his work, but it is like he is living in a soap opera over there. He's slugging through every day the best he can. And I feel like I'm taking on his emotions for him too. It just doesn't fly to let you emotions well forth in his line of work.

I'm strong, and as long as my hormones are stable I'm happy to take on the emotional burdens of those I love until they have the time, energy, and space to deal with them themselves. But I wonder if I really am helping them in some cosmic way.

Or am I just bogging myself down by being overly empathetic? And therefor being a worse friend, wife, and mother?

Do you believe in the power of empathy?

Monday, March 26, 2007

Bitches, Cosmos, and Prom Dates

I just yelled out, "Oh my god, Buffy! If you don't shut up I'm going to kill you!"

She doesn't like it when the lawn guys are here. She can't see them out the windows, but that doesn't stop her from barking her ever-loving head off.

Still, what kind of idiot yells at her dog in complete sentences? Like any dog will understand that.

Funny, though. She just trotted in and sat down next to me. I guess she could hear the threat in my voice. I swear the little pink bow-bedecked demon dog is smarter than me most of the time.

Oh sure, I have my moments. Just this weekend I came up with a brilliant term for that phenomenon of drinking one (or four) too many cosmopolitans and making bad choices in bed (or backseat, or bathroom stall) partners. It's cosmopolinating.

Get it? See. I'm brilliant.

I can find the humor in lots of things that other people don't. Like, for example, my husband and I have been joking about drinking Smirnoff Ice since we attended a party with two full coolers of them. He even brought me home a six pack of them after work last Friday. I finally got around to drinking a couple of them Saturday night.

He was working around the house and I was laughing at myself drinking all alone. It was like I was back in high school drinking wine coolers. Except I didn't drink in high school. Or break any rules. My husband thinks that's why I'm living a second adolescence on those rare weekends when I get out with my friends.

I'll even be going to prom again here soon. The theme for this year's big school fundraising night is "Back in Time: Who Ya Taking to the Prom?"

I'll be taking my husband. He turned me down when I asked him to take me to prom in high school. He said, "Who should I take to the prom?"

I answered, "I really think you should take me."

And he said, "Nah."

He took my brother's ex-girlfriend (a.k.a. Miss Piggy) instead. And I still married him. I think he owes me. Big time.

He's ordered a tux and a limo. We're doing it right this time. And we're getting drunk. After this prom, he might just get lucky.

My friend SW is making a collage of our prom pictures as a "conversation piece" for that night. I've got to dig ours up. My husband had two dates for his junior prom. He wore a royal blue cummerbund and bow tie for pictures with one girl, and then changed into an emerald green cummerbund and bow tie for pictures with the next girl. I have photographic proof somewhere.

If I can find it, I'm posting it here. As punishment. For not taking me to his prom. Serves him right.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Tuna School of Dramatic Arts

Today for the first time ever, I considered what it would be like to home school my kids.

We had such a great day. The kids were out of school for parent/teacher conferences. But we're the only school in the area that does this. So it was like the kids and I had the world all to ourselves.

We slept late, or at least I did. We packed up some sandwiches and had a picnic lunch at the park. We went to the library and picked out books. We practices violin. All of us. Happily. We cleaned the house including windows. And we took my daughter to ballet class and an evening soccer game.

We were so happy. The kids even exclaimed, "You were so nice today, Mom!"

Okay, okay. We stopped at Target on the way home from soccer to return some clothes and buy a birthday gift. And I may have bought them each a toy and Daddy a Shuffle. But still. I don't think I had to resort to bribery for them to say I was nice.

If I home schooled, I'd never have to worry about another report card day or parent/teacher conference. If only home schooling didn't involve me having to actually teach them anything.

I suck at that.

Now if only I had sex planned into my evening it would be the perfect day.

Oh, wait! I do!

Does life get any better than this?

Wednesday, March 21, 2007


via Ultrablog

You'll die from a Heart Attack during Sex.

Your a lover not a fighter but sadly, in the act of making love your heart will stop. But what a way to go.

'How will you die?' at

In other news, my father turned sixty today. How the hell did that happen?

Naughty Moms Need Fun Too

Tylenol PM to the rescue.

After a solid eight hours of sleep last night, I am feeling so much better today. I wonder if I will ever have a positive relationship with sleep.

It's a good thing I'm feeling more myself because today is one of those days.

It's report card day. I never know what to say to my daughter about her report card. She is so hyper-sensitive. But she is slipping a bit in both spelling and reading, things she supposedly excels at. She has too much going on. And I know it. But life has gotten out of control and I hate to reign it back for fear of cutting out what would benefit her the most.

We swore we wouldn't do this as parents.

She has softball practice tonight and I am dreading it! Her coach has taken something I love with all my heart and made me dread it. I kind of hate her. Next year, I'll coach.

The husband is flying today and going to class tonight. I'm going to use this alone time tonight to organize my thoughts and get even more back on track.

As I read over what I have written here I'm realizing something. I need to have some fun. I need to let loose a little. What I wouldn't give to have a local best friend who I could call to come on over and watch movies with me.

I think I'll plan an at-home date with my husband this weekend. No sex required. (Oh, okay. Maybe we can have sex too.)

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Not My Best

Today I took a bath.

I haven't been so great at hiding my recent bout of depression. I've been sleeping whenever the kids are asleep or at school and while I do everything to make sure they're taken care of, I haven't been taking care of myself.

I'm a little surprised at how long it took my people to catch on.

Last night I got my gym bag ready for this morning. I kept telling myself I'd take a shower before bed and be ready to start the next morning fresh and new. Then I stayed up all night doing nothing. At about 3 a.m. I realized that I was avoiding going to sleep because I didn't want to have to wake up and face a new day.

I rolled out of bed and drove the kids to school this morning, then came right back home and fell asleep on the couch. I stayed there until the very last minute and went to pick up my son from preschool.

I planned on staying in my car and hiding. I didn't want anyone to see that I was probably wearing the same clothes for the third day in a row (I honestly don't remember) and that my hair was greasier than a corn dog. Oh, and a lot of facial hair has grown back too. I haven't done anything about that in a while.

But I'm not usually one to hide. So when a friend noticed me in my car with my head buried over my Treo, she jumped right in front of my hood to scare the crap out of me.

Which she did. Quite successfully.

Then I had to talk with her, greasy hair and all.

It's not that I think she noticed or cared. But I knew. And I cared.

I came back home and fed my son lunch. I knew that I had to do something to turn this funk around. So I asked my son for a few minutes of privacy and I set about to bathe, wash my hair, floss, and shave. It took me about forty-five minutes.

The whole time I was thinking about how wonderful it is to have a responsible child who can interest himself in building train tracks for that long.

Just as I was finished, Patrick called. I hadn't been talking to him for more than ten seconds when my son came running up to tell me that he got poop on his underwear.

"You had an accident?" I asked him, a bit more incredulously than I probably should have.

"No, I forgot to wipe!" he cheerfully declared.

"Well, clean up, and get new underwear."

I continued to chat with Patrick while I watched him complete these tasks. Then my son informed me, "Buffy pooped in the playroom!" He was just as cheerful about that.

Buffy has a habit of pooping when she's angry and I had dared to leave her alone for all that time. Apparently, a five-year-old boy isn't a good playmate.

I picked the poop up with a tissue and took it to flush down the toilet. Only to discover pee all over my tile floor.

"Did you miss?" I asked my son.

"Yeah, I peed too fast."

Jeez! I take forty-five minutes to recover from a week of depression and all poop and pee hell breaks loose? I asked Patrick if he wanted to trade lives. He declined.

As I was saying goodbye to Patrick to clean up the sea of pee, my son also informed me with glee, "I dropped my car in there too!"

"And did you go in after it?"

"Yeah. I got it out with my hand."

"Did you wash your hands?"

Of course not.

This is the reality of motherhood. One day they're mathematical geniuses. The next day they're peeing on the floor. If I couldn't find the humor in it, I don't know if I could survive.

But today I took a bath. And it was a triumph. Once I get the kid bathed too, I'm moving nothing but forward.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Tuna Kids Kick Tailfin

The last few weeks have been pretty good ones for the Tuna kids.

I'm not one to brag about my kids. Much, anyway.

*Side note: I deliberated over that sentence for quite a while. Do I brag about my kids? Those of you who know me in real life need to weigh in. If I am prone to brag about my kids at all it is usually about their sweet natures and early bedtime. Right? Anyway...

My son brought a letter home from school last week. He apparently has, "...exceptional promise at and interest in mathematics." The math specialist has put him on an accelerated home study program.

Woo hoo. My kid's smart.

Okay, those who know him would give me a big, "Well, duh!" on that one. Especially when it comes to math. But it is nice to have my own thoughts confirmed.

And my daughter got the lead role in her class play.

This is an especially sweet success for her, and I hope it will be a huge confidence booster. For a week their homework was to read the script and decide which part they'd like to try out for. She kept telling us she wanted to be Cat #6 or Child #3. After much discussion, she finally told us that even though she wanted to be the lead, she knew she wouldn't get it.

That just about broke my heart.

She got big speeches from both of us about how she's just as good, if not better, than anyone and how she has every right to try out for the biggest role. We talked about risk and rejection. And about giving everything your best shot.

I was so happy for her.

Dealing with your kids failures is easy. At least for me. I blame it all on me. Dealing with their successes is a bit more complex.

My first reaction is to think that they were born with these talents. I give them all the credit for trying hard and letting their talent shine.

But I think it is important to remember a parent's role in a kid's success. Maybe my son's innate math abilities were developed because of all of the music education I exposed him to, starting in the womb. Maybe my daughter's innate dramatic flair was developed by all the reading I did to her, starting in the womb.

It's important to recognize your hand in your child's success, especially when it is not your inclination to do so, so that you can learn what works, remember that what you do day in and day out has positive effects, and be motivated to keep working hard for your kids.

All I know is that right now, I'm really proud of my kids. They're all mine and I love them to pieces.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Three Years

Another Saint Patrick's Day gone by means my blog is another year older.

Hard to believe.

Thanks to all of you, my wonderful readers. (You know I have the best readers, right? It's a scientific fact.)

The coolest thing about my blogiversary is that the three bloggers who inspired me on this path are all still blogging. And so are my closest friends.

Here's my annual heartfelt thank you (with accompanying hugs and kisses) to Nicky, MAK, and Mark.

And if you enjoy reading about my life here, you should probably run on by and thank Patrick, who has kept me writing whenever I have wanted to give up.

And last but hardly least, I need to thank my husband, whose incredible good grace and understanding have made me feel safe and loved. (Love you, hon!)

Friday, March 16, 2007

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Lick it Good

Buffy the Wonder Puppy spent about an hour last night licking my husband's stinky hockey pants.

For about twenty minutes, I was walking around the house trying to figure out where that strange sound was coming from. I finally found her in the kitchen (Yes, he opened up that disgusting bag in my kitchen!) going to town on the crotch of his pants.

God, that makes me shudder.

All night long she kept sneaking back there for more tastes.

Dirty, little, pig puppy.

Who wants Buffy kisses?

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Stories to Tell

I have been trying and trying over the past twenty-four hours to put together some intelligent thoughts on the Chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff's recent idiocy.

Read all about it at the links below. And read the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network response too.

Pace equates homosexuality to adultery

SLDN demands apology from Pace

But all I can come up with in my rage and disgust is this: Fuck off, asshole!

See, not so enlightened. And probably not going to get me any good press.

(Update: Pace: regrets, but no apology)

Just when I was getting my pulse going and my pen wagging to write to my local paper (a paper I've worked for and still write for occasionally) to drop Coulture's column, they went ahead and did so with an excellent editorial.

Now I have a new fire igniting my rage. But I am so angry that I can't seem to write logically. When I cool down, in a day or two, I'm going to give it a really good try. Then I'll see if my offer to be a recurring guest columnist holds up. And I'll see how many of my husband's colleagues I can piss off.

The insightful Scott of Sardonic Bomb recently said, "It IS making me hate Christianity, because even if this narrow mindset only represents a percentage of true Christians, the rest of them don't yet have the balls to stand up and publicly say, 'This is wrong.'"

Well, I may only be a quasi-Christian, but I'm standing up and saying it.

This is wrong!

It has gotten to the point where I think it is up to us, the military wives, the Republicans, the mid-America housewives, and especially the Christians to fight this fight. Gay America is not the enemy. They are not immoral. They are not akin to adulterers. They are just people, only somewhat different than you and me, who are trying to live life the best they can in a country that hates them more and more.

The top government officials and military leaders are not going to listen to Gay America. They are going to call them a bunch of fags and twist every effort they make into more hatred.

It is up to us.

Gay rights activist Barbara Gittings died last month. She had been fighting since the 1950's. Eric Alva is fighting now. (Read about him in the links below.) I think it is too much fighting, with too much cost, for too little gain.

It is our turn now.

UPDATE: Amen, sister! Paula at Ultrablog has a great take on things.

Any other straighties got something to say?

Related links:

Don't Ask Don't Tell repeal

HRC: Eric Alva story

In his own words at The Huffington Post

Pelosi and Meehan support...add comments

GMA story at Think Progress

Monday, March 12, 2007

Crunch Time

It's crunch time here in the land of pee-soaked sheets, peanut butter sandwiches, and pint-size violinists. And I'm not just talking about my abs.

There is about a month-long period of time from mid-March to mid-April when sports seasons overlap, school testing and evaluations are a prime focus, and this mild-mannered mom barely keeps up.

It's like every brain cell I have is sucked up in motherhood and wifely duties and everything else takes a back seat.

It's also the time of year when the next year's parents' board positions and responsibilities are meted out.

It's been stressful for me because at every turn, people are trying to flatter me into doing the most difficult jobs. I'm not good at saying no. And I really suck at saying no when people are complimenting me. Word must be out because, damn, the flattery is flying.

I do want to help somewhere. And I'm happiest when I'm in charge. But I don't want to spend another two years sucked into the hardest volunteer job at the school.

So I decided that if I'm so great, I should be able to pick my own position. And I did. I chose a job organizing a one-day event with only a one year commitment. And it just so happens my four best friends are the four former chairs of this event. It's going to be a piece of cake. Especially compared to the craptastic fundraising job I had these last two years.

But, well, damn it. They got me. Somehow I'm also going to be the chair of another committee that is so top secret, I don't even know the name of it. Apparently, they don't let anyone know about this committee because they pick and choose who they want on it. And they want me.

They want me to throw three social events for former trustees and big-time donors.

Can you even picture me doing that?

How the hell did I get here, to this place of throwing luncheons, and teaching kids to play softball, and handing out discipline like know what the hell I'm doing?

I have no idea.

It feels like it was only yesterday I was learning to play softball myself.

But I'm here. And I'm me. The same overachiever I've always been. The overachiever who needs a damned break.

I'm counting the days until May 18.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Hot vs. Cute: Hot wins again!

My husband had better stop taking me for granted.

"You know what, sweetheart? You've got competition," I told him last night, after my run through the Taco Bell drive-thru. "The Taco Bell guy hit on me."

"Yeah? Did he have all his teeth?"

"I think so," I replied. "He was missing a hand though."

You see, I have a history.

Once upon a time, I was hot. No really. I was. And I can say that now, because I had no clue of my hotness quotient at the time.

And when I was hot, I got hit on from time to time. Actually, a lot of the time. But I had a boyfriend/fiance and never cared much.

Then I got married and gained some weight from all the stress of graduating college, moving across the country all alone, and finding a job. The military wife life is the life for me, but it still hit me like a ton of bricks starting out. A ton of bricks which I promptly ate.

But I lost that weight. Then I had a baby and gained some weight. Then I lost that weight. And then I had another baby and gained some weight. And then...well. Yeah. Not so much with the losing since then.

But at those times when I was heavier, I still got hit on, just by a different class of men. And most of them were missing teeth. It seems I'm really attractive to country folk. And foreign guys. Just ask the dishwasher at Patrick's restaurant. I guess some cultures find a woman with a little meat on her bones to be attractive.

See, I'm not fat. I just live in the wrong country!

I can tell you though, without a doubt, exactly what the difference is between hot and cute.

Thirty pounds.

I'm through with the Taco Bell guy. Maybe there's a guy at the salad place* who will hit on me.

*That's a joke. There is no such thing as a salad place here on the bayou.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Three Drink Minimum

I learned a very valuable lesson this weekend.

I learned to always get my husband drunk when we go out on a date. Not only is he way fun, he buys me stuff.

My poor husband has been working an incredible number of hours at a very demanding job for months now. Combine that with normal stress over family and money and it's starting to take its toll.

I decided that we both needed a little break from life, so I booked a babysitter for Friday night.

When we had to wait twenty minutes for a table at the restaurant, we decided to get a drink at the bar. Diet Coke for me, please. Jack and Coke for the non-driver. He choked down a martini with dinner and then ordered another Jack and Coke to wash out the taste.

Woo hoo! Drunk Tuna Man is fun.

Actually, I'd say he was far from drunk. I've carried too many cadets back to their dorm rooms to think that. But he was loose and talkative and fun.

After dinner we went to Best Buy where he asked me what color iPod Shuffle I liked best. He then turned to the mohawked sales guy and said, "We'll take a Shuffle in pink, please."

We walked down the sidewalk to Target (because I'm not there enough during the week) and he talked me into buying a watch. Mine had broken in October and I was driving everyone in my life crazy always asking for the time.

Because he picked the restaurant and the after-dinner shopping, I got to pick the movie. I chose Music and Lyrics which was surprisingly good. My husband was happy because he apparently really likes Drew Barrymore. Who knew? Straight guys are so weird. (And Hugh Grant looks damn good for whatever advanced age he is.)

All in all it was the best date we've had in years. Maybe the best date we've had post kids. And I'm not just saying that because I got new stuff.

In other weekend news, Mr. Nathan acquired two new accouterments: A sleeveless t-shirt and a wedding ring.

And a nation of women and gay men mourn.

Now I feel bad ogling him. Damn ring.

Oh, hey! Look at what I have on my finger.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

A Matter of Forgiveness

I've got to admit it, and it borders on the overly personal, but I was so mad at Patrick yesterday. So mad.

But you can't be mad at someone on his birthday. It's in the rule book.

I suck at anger. It isn't all that often that I am angry and I just have no idea how to deal with it. I have no anger role-model. My father was the type to completely blow up over any little thing. The whole neighborhood would know when he was mad. And he was mad a lot. My mother was too afraid to ever be angry, so she suppressed, suppressed, suppressed.

I fall somewhere in between.

When I'm mad at my husband I have no problem letting him know why and how he hurt me. Unless it has to do with money. But that's another story. It took us three years of marriage to learn how to fight well. We occasionally don't do so well. The summer of 2005 comes to mind. But for the most part, we communicate very well.

I haven't quite figured out those particulars with Patrick. How do friends express anger? I realized that I haven't had a close enough friend to even worry about this problem since college.

God, that sucks.

So as it turns out, it was a misunderstanding. A misunderstanding over one word, a tiny little pronoun at that. To me "you" was meant to be singular. To him "you" was meant to be plural. It's amazing how one small word can change so much.

He even told me that he was sorry. And he didn't say it in that, "I'm sorry you were upset. I'm sorry you didn't understand," way. But more like he was sorry that the misunderstanding happened at all.

How many people really say sorry anymore? Think about it. Have humans always been so bad at repentance, or is this a recent development?

We've taught our kids that when they do something by mistake they can say, "I'm sorry." But when they do something hurtful or wrong on purpose, they must ask for forgiveness. They must actually say the words, "Will you forgive me?"

It's humbling. But valuable.

I try to remember the lesson myself. It is very hard.

I'm sorry I misunderstood you. It was wrong of me to assume the worst. Will you forgive me?

See? That was painful. And it doesn't count because it wasn't in person.

Do you owe someone an apology? How much would it hurt to utter the words, "Will you forgive me?"

Would it be worth it?