Holy shit show, batman!!


Do you ever have those weeks  where you just say to yourself “what the fucking fuck is going on!?” Yep, welcome to week 1 of September 2017!!
BOOM! (that was the sound of all of the shit shows exploding all at once)

It started out as any week would…. with a Monday. This was no ordinary Monday, though, it was a holiday Monday that preceded the first day of school for my 3 kids. We went about our ordinary “back to school” business – laundry, backpacks, hair cuts, etc. And then the hour was upon us – DUN DUN DUN!!!

This year we have to drive our oldest to the high school. Fear not; the grade 9’s have their own wing… their own area with their own lockers, bathrooms, classrooms and eating area. It basically is its own self-sufficient little pond in amongst the big pond that is high school. We had explained this to our son many times, and even showed him previous to the school year starting at the “meet the teacher night” that we attended, like the good little nerds that we are. We showed him around, helped him with his locker, figured out where his classrooms were, discovered the gym and cafeteria (he was elated to see the food options now, unlike the school he had before, which only did a basic hot lunch program). He got excited about school council (it helped greatly, I’m sure, that the girl telling him about it was this tiny perky little adorable blonde girl). He was hugely excited for volleyball tryouts (again, the girls volleyball team was there to help hand out the kids schedules, and again, adorable little perky girls). Learned that his 3 best friends from junior high were all in his homeroom, and the rest of his friends were in the homeroom next door, and in a few of his options. All in all, he was happy.

So on the first day of school, he got out, I did the typical “mom thing” and took his picture in front of the school sign (I have every year since he started kindergarten) and didn’t do anything mommish or embarrassing, and sent him on his way into his new school. Then we rushed across town to drop the other two yahoo’s off.

Our middle kid, our little diabadass, our space cadet – he was fine. We had a meeting with the grade 7 staff a few days before school, as to teach them “how not to kill our son this year”. So he was fine to start, and excited to see his friends. He is low maintenance (diabetes aside) and has a “zero fucks given” mentality about most things. He’s easy (again, diabetes aside… but you can win them all).

And our little guy…. awww… my baby! He started grade 1. And he was FINE! He was excited that he got a locker this year, found his seat, sat down, and my husband and I became vapor. I still stuck around a bit, cuz fuck, he’s still a baby! I keep getting told that he isn’t (he is almost 6) but those people can fuck right off…. Regardless, he was fine. Least of my worries.

Kids came home, and everything was fine. Smiles at the dinner table, stories of the first day and reconnecting with their friends. Happy times. Mom win.

Wednesday morning hits…. I am in BLISSVILLE, as I am home alone. Kids are at school, hubby picked up a last minute overtime shift…. so I was going to get my Starbucks and go read in the peace and quiet of my house… clean the bathrooms and revel in how pissless they remain for the entire day. I had big plans, I tell ya. Then my phone dings at Starbucks, and it is my oldest —

“I don’t want to try out for volleyball this year”

BOOM. What the actual fuck. My son LOVES volleyball like fat kids love McDonalds. This is not right.

“excuse me?!” fumbling for my scalding hot coffee and trying to not spill it on myself.

“I want to spend the year getting myself acquainted with the new school”

“no” I pull no punches.. while trying to catch my breath, as it felt like I was punched in the gut.

“fine”

Holy shit. What did he just say to me?! “WHAT!? drop the attitude please, sir!”

By this point, I was in my truck, dialing my husband, and flying back in the direction of the high school. Little shit wants to text me this crap, he can say it to my damned face! The face that has spent countless hours driving him to and from practices, watching every game and tournament, spent hundreds upon hundreds in volleyball camps, shoes, kneepads, clothes, bla fucking bla.

So I am literally shrieking into my truck phone, which I am sure sounded like screaming squirrel to my husband, who is blissfully working away, but still forced to listen to the ramblings of my seriously unbalanced psyche. By the time I get to the school, I am fuming mad. “fuck this… I did NOT raise a pussy ass quitter!!!” And I go marching into the school, parked in the 15 minute drop off. I give zero fucks at this point… except the fact that my “extra hot” latte is sitting in there getting all cold and shit.

I walk in, trying my best to not look like a fucking lunatic, and thank shit that I did my makeup that morning, so as to not scare the fuck out of everyone around me.

“hi!” big smile as I talk to the secretary I’ve never met before, “my son left his lunch money in the truck”, I lie, knowing she wouldn’t’ pull him out of class had I said “little fucker is trying to be a punk ass quitter and I need to strangle him!”

So he comes down the hall of his wing, sees me, and breaks down. I wasn’t glaring, I just looked up at him. Holy fuck, like, monster meltdown. I drag him outside as to not make a scene, and ask him what the fucking fuck…..

Scared. Big school. Big kids (he is 6’1″ I should point out). New teachers. New people. I get it. I’ve done it (not the 6’1″ part, thank you, genetics)! So I try to calm him down and talk some reason into his erratic thoughts. Nope. So I drag him over to the counsellor, who does a 180 and marches us right back into her offie upon seeing his face. He was not ok. We chatted a bit and then she sent me away, as to avoid a parking ticket (holy fuck, that would have just been the shit icing that day!)

He texted me later, and he was fine. Met his volleyball coach, and she is this cute little lady, not threatening at all. He was fine. Took him back to the school for his 5:30 tryout, and only 8 other boys are there. Sweet. No cuts! He had a great time. All smiles when I picked him up.

Lets skip ahead to 1am that night. My little diabadass, my low maintenance “I give zero fucks” kid pulled the children of the corn shit on me, standing at my bedside at 1am, staring at me until I awoke, barely refraining from hitting the body standing beside me.

“I have a stomach ache” ……. BOOM.

“okay, get back to bed and I will come check your blood sugars” And sure enough, they were elevated. So I plug a correction into his pump and grab him some water.

“I feel overwhelmed by junior high”…. fuck.

“uh, it is the second day of school. What could possibly be overwhelming already”

“I am nervous about finals. There is so much to learn…”

FUCK! Breathe, Jennie… don’t smother your child…..

“Okay”, breathe in and out, “lets talk about that in the morning” and I walk away, grinding my teeth, wondering if I screamed into a pillow, if I would wake anyone. Then I lay awake in bed until almost 3, because the little assbag scared me so bad standing beside me, and my adrenaline is pumping because of the bullshit he just spewed…. no sleep for the wicked, indeed.

Thursday morning…. “oh children of mine. Perhaps in the future, if you all feel like melting down and having some little freakouts, would you be so kind as to do them at a MORE APPROPRIATE HOUR!?!?!?!? Like at dinner when you are straight up asked how school is going!? MY FRICKING GAWD!!!!!” and they stared at me with open mouths, like, how dare she, why is she losing her mind!?

*insert crazy ass laugh here*

I thought I was in the clear until 3:16 on Friday when my phone went ding. I was walking into my youngest kids school, again blissfully unaware that another boom was coming.

“I don’t want to go to volleyball today”

BOOM.

mother of fucking hell……

“and why pray-tell not?” breathe in and out, Jennie….

“she made us play this game last time, and it was hard. and it took like a half an hour”

okay, here comes another ‘holy fuck, my mom is losing it’ moment……

“you have GOT TO BE KIDDING ME. YOU WILL NOT BE A QUITTER! You like volleyball. So, go like it again. Stop being a whiner when things aren’t easy, or you have to actually try. GO! TRY! Enough is enough! I am done with this. Life is going to suck for you if you don’t ever try and you give up when you feel like it isn’t going to be easy!”

“fine”

fuck my life…. he said it again…. as though the first time wasn’t enough of a warning….

“you have got to be kidding me. Attitude. Say goodbye to it, or you can say goodbye to your iPad, phone, Apple TV, xbox, life as you know it…. you will live an amish existence if you can’t get your head out of your ass and behave as though you are the kid that I RAISED!”

“ok. see you at 5:30. Love you”

Yeah, you fucking better………

“love you, too. Have fun.”

5:30……

“hey buddy how was volleyball?”

“GREAT! I had so much fun. Coach said I am doing good. I just need to practice my setting, but my serves and hitting are really good!”

I was right. I am always right. Bow to my wonder.

“well we already knew your setting needed work, you have long frozen hot dogs for fingers” this made him laugh, so I had my opening, “what is wrong buddy. Why don’t you like yourself?”

“I don’t think I am anything special or worthwhile.”

BOOM.

“I don’t see what you see. You guys all tell me all the time how special I am, and how I should be happy with who I am and how I am, but I don’t see it. I am skinny and weak”

AH HA!!!! We have a crack in the armor!!!

“Yeah, you are skinny and weak! You grew like 4 or 6 inches in a very short period. You grew straight up SO fast!! But your growing will slow down now, and now you will fill out. It happens! Some people are built this way. And you are weak because you are lazy and only sit on your ass and play iPad. Volleyball and athletic development will help”

And he smiled. I think I have helped, but I still call for reinforcements. I call my mom, who spent her night texting him and telling him stories of me and my siblings. He has no idea about this, he just sees us now and never assumed any of us were bullied or picked or had a hard time. I called my best friend and she almost broke down and talked me down off of my “oh my god, I suck at parenting, I should have done better!” ledge. She took his phone number to text him, too. My husband spent the night and next day telling him stories of when he was small and was bullied, and how he changed it. We showed him pictures of when all of us were young and skinny and awkward as fucking hell.

My fucking god, lets hope this all helped. He has volleyball tomorrow night – cross your damned fingers that he goes in with a smile and comes out with a smile. Cuz I am not sure I can handle any more days where I feel like a gigantic failure of a parent, and wonder where I went wrong. And I don’t ever want him having any more moments where he feels like he is nothing special.

My diabadass is fine. Once we explained that finals occur AFTER you learn all of that stuff, he chilled and is back to his ‘zero fucks given’ existence. And my baby… well…. I still think he should stay home with me. But he is refusing, so whatever, I guess I am happy that he is enjoying grade 1, so far.

Holy fucking fuck… what a week. And now, once again, because of last week, my coffee is cold. Damnit.

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When things change…

can-you-see-it-change-is-here

 

All three of my kids started school today. It was a big day for us. We had one start high school (only because in this stupid town, high school starts in grade 9), one start junior high and one start elementary.

It was a big day. We drove our oldest to school – a different school than his brothers for the first time ever. We pulled up to the high school, in the mess of busses and vehicles, and I quickly jumped out of the truck to snap a pic in front of the school sign. I have taken pic of them at school on the first day since he started kindergarten. But this year, he didn’t want us to go in with him. Sigh. Fine, I will just take a pic in front of the sign, in front of all of the busses and vehicles. I will show you, teenager. Hahaha!

Then we rushed back across town to drop off the other two. We walked in today, already knowing where our kids were going, because we got in to the school when no one else did. Thanks, diabetic kid. Hey, you have to find the perks where you can, right? So while the hundreds of kids were surrounded by their clueless parents, wandering the hallways and clogging doorways, we just strutted in (flipping lots of people off in our minds…. gift of my way…) But we dropped our little diabadass off in his grade 7 classroom, asked the teacher to keep him alive, and went about our business.

Business being…. dropping our baby boy off for his first day of elementary. Sure, he had kindergarten last year, but I still got him all to myself 3 days a week. Plus weekends. And now? Only after school and weekends until he graduates… and then he’s leaving me! Do you see how fast this is happening!? He is gone full time now, learning, growing, and I am not there to be the one to show him what to do or help him when he gets frustrated. Fuck, I am so not ready for this. It has been me and him for so long! But he promised me that he would still hug me every day… holy, shattered heart! My baby!!!! *sob*

So as a way to welcome our new way of life, my husband and I went to get pedicures, cleaned the house and then went to a patio and had some drinks. It is the first time it has really been just him and me. We moved in together soon after getting together (and had lived 4 hours apart), never really dated or any of that time consuming shit. And then I got pregnant reallllly soon after moving in together (we don’t fuck around, actually, we did… hahahaha) So right off the bat, it has been me and him, but always with other people.

I brought my 2 boys into the relationship (hello, baggage!) and then got pregnant right away. So from the beginning, it has been me and him and them. And while my older two have been in school since we moved in together, I also worked full time until our little dude was born, so it wasn’t really just me and him, ever.

So, now, facing this new part of our life, I am excited but also apprehensive. I am nervous… what if this change in our life isn’t good? What if spending so much time together creates a rift? What if our buffer (our children) not being here makes him realize that he doesn’t really like me?

Yes. All of this is troubling me, as fucking stupid as it may seem. It is a change, it is a big change. I will be starting school in January, but until then, it is just him and me and our days together. He only works weekends, so we have all week, every week, just him and me. It has never been just him and me.

What if he doesn’t like me?

I know this seems absurd, but I can’t be the only one who ever felt this way, worried this way, felt this concern.

It’s a change… a shift in our life… our pattern is changing…..

What if he doesn’t like me?

Yet another road block…

To say my life has been easy, or handed to me, would be a bold faced lie. I have had to fight, tooth and nail, for everything that I have. I am a little bitter that it has been so hard for me, when I watch everyone else just cruise and get what they want with little effort. That is not to say that everyone I know doesn’t work hard for what they have (most of them, some of them are just straight up lazy asses who let everything just get handed to them…) but when all you have are the normal obstacles, you never really will understand the larger ones in life.

That’s me – the wrangler of the large ass obstacles. I would like to say that I have done this all with grace and compassion, but that’s straight up shit. I have been angry, I have been mad, I have cried, I have cursed what brought me to this point, I have plotted the conducters demise (yep. I have. judge away.. I care not), I have flipped my shit and screamed at the unfairness of this entire situation. None of that has helped, but I do believe it has helped me maintain a shred of sanity – no one can leave that much hostility bottled up without going bat shit crazy. That being said, I have also kept a smile on my face, I have kept trying, I have kept my kids happy and healthy and well adjusted, I kept my sobriety (which I believe is a feat all on its own!), I have kept my life fairly balanced, and I still have all of my hair! hahaha….

I have fought back and won. I know very few people who could do what I have done… life is not easy when everything is taken from you all at once. Literally, everything. I had me and my kids, and everything else, I had to fight for and get on my own. NOTHING has been handed to me. NO ONE can say that I wouldn’t be where I am if it weren’t for them (except maybe the asshole who fucked things up for me in the first place). Everything I have and everything I am is because I refused to give up, I am tenacious, and I did everything in my power to get back on my own two feet. I mean, my husband helped, but that wasn’t so much a silver platter as it was a partner in crime. Everything I have, everything we have, has come from hard work, grit and determination. Imagine living your life with literally no credit. None. Not even a dollar. Could you do it? I fucking doubt it. But I did, and we did, and now look where we are.

And even with everything we have done, accomplished, fought for, striven for, rebuilt… I am still finding myself facing road blocks. Bull shit from my past that never should have affected me in the first place, but I was unfortunate enough to be tied to one of the most selfish pieces of shit on the planet. But I digress, that was then and this is now.

And while I sit back and watch people go about their lives, spending money like it is not an issue (and for some it isn’t, but for some, it damned well is…) I am sitting here, despairingly, and a bit heartbroken, because I have a plan for my life, something I desperately want to do, something for me, and I can’t. I just can’t.

My life is my own, but I am also living in the shadows of other peoples choices, and it affects my life every day. I have chosen to live my life happily, in spite of the constant shit I had to endure. And I am happy I did. But it would be nice to just live my life, the way I want to, without the constant reminder of the heinous bullshit people pulled on me.

I am happy. I love my life. I love my husband and my kids. I just wish that things were easier, sometimes. But I suppose it is what it is, and there’s nothing I can do to change the past.

Six months. In just six months I will get exactly what I want, once again, on my own. I guess in a way, it is amazing and awe inspiring that I have been able to do what I have done, on my own. Not many can say that. But I can. And that is something that no one can take away from me.

Finding the me in the lonely.. 

I have been feeling lonely lately. I don’t know if it’s because the days are shorter (not actually, as they’re still 24 hours, but just so damned much darkness), or if it’s because of the time of year and thinking of people I’ve lost over the years, if it’s some bizarre festive depression-like shit, or if I’m just sad. Who fucking knows – it could be hormonal (thanks, thyroid) 

But what I do know is, I have to find me in the lonely. I know I’m in there somewhere, I just have to keep digging. 

I’ve lost some people over the years, and it continues to sting. Some of the people I’ve lost, I’ve all but forgotten about. But some will never fade into the background. And Christmas is always harder on you when you miss someone. 

But why do I feel lonely? I’m not sure. Maybe it’s not lonely; perhaps its that I am listless. I have lots of lists (thanks, type a) but I feel like I should be going somewhere, doing something, and I’m not. But what? Where? 

I have some plans for 2017 and I’m hoping it will help shed some light on my darkness. What I do know for sure is, more people will be fading into the background, and I’m okay with that. One thing I have no doubt about – some people need to go away. Some people are toxic and I need not have that sludge any longer. I don’t know why I held on for so long. Perhaps because it’s what society has said is right. 

Well fuck society. 

I will finish off this year as best as I can and will as much strength as I can garner. And then maybe, just maybe, I will be able to find the me in the lonely, and she can, once again, be set free. 

I’ve lost myself over the years. Smiling at people who don’t deserve smiles. Letting things go that deserved a fight. Allowing poor treatment when a punch was more deserving. I need to find me. And I think that will abolish the lonely. 

Maybe I’m not lonely. I think, maybe, the more likely story is, I’m lost. 

I am back, bitches!

I have taken some time to chill, organize my life, and see how things feel. And what I can say right now is… things feel great! We are happy in our new house – it fits us very well and everyone is loving our new space.

Don’t get me wrong, the move itself was a slice of flaming hell. We had help. We arranged ahead of time for people to come help with the heavy cumbersome shit. I pack the house and clean after it is emptied, so the husband moves the shit. Seems fair. Except this time, help didn’t come. Bunch of hosers just didn’t show up. So who did the brunt of the heavy lifting? That would be us. At one point, my head was pinned between the wall and the couch, and I was not pleased. I know there are other people we could have called, but I have a very good reason for not doing so, which is why I am not bitching too heavily about moving our shit ourselves. Am I selfless? Did I want to give people their time with their families? Did I want to avoid being an inconvenience? NO! I don’t want those people calling us to move their shit. HAHA! Totally selfish, hence only being slightly annoyed.

Moving on…. We are settled and everyone is enjoying their respective spots in school.

Biggest little is thriving in grade 8 and just starting another year of volleyball. He is so good at that game, it is crazy. And it doesn’t hurt that he is very close to being 6 feet tall. Loser. I make him sit down when I give him shit, now. Nobody will take a 5’3″ person seriously when they hover 5-6 inches above them. He is a giant. He has a big heart. But at times I still question every choice I have ever made with him, due to the moron-adolescent big-ass attitude. Just have to remember it happens to the best of us and hope tomorrow is better. But as I remind myself all the time – it could be worse! He truly is a great kid and watching him become this beanpole with a vision for his life is kind of flooring me!

Middle-little (also known as the diabetic) is kicking ass this year. November 9th will be his 1 year diaversary, and he has got such a good grasp of it, our last appointment was mostly just sitting around and bullshitting with his nurses.. they didn’t even want to see his food log. He has grown (physically and emotionally) with this disease and we are blown away every day with how well he has adapted. He is in grade 6 and doing amazeballs with school and with his stupid busted ass pancreas. But he is so much more than just a diabetic kid. He is so funny and silly, and is going to earn a living with his amazing drawing and attention to detail. Just you wait and see….

Little-little!! Aww, here is where the changes are undeniable. My baby started kindergarten this year. Not only is it weird that he isn’t home two days a week, but he comes home and talks about this life that we aren’t a part of, and that has never happened before. It is tearing my heart apart a bit, but he is doing really well, so that helps. He attended his first bday party without us today, which is another change. Sigh… My baby. Seriously freaked out by this new development!

My husband!! Seriously… gush gush gush. I love the ever loving shit out of that man! Him appearing in my life was random, and a total miracle. My heart was obliterated before him, and now it is put back together in the most perfect way. He did a course at work this week, and walked away with a 98% which is amazing for someone who despises school, tests, speaking in front of people, has adhd, etc. And now this man, this amazing human that I get to share my life with, is a certified heavy equipment operator, and is certified to train people to not only run the equipment, but to also train other people to train people. In summation, he is a heavy equipment badass, and I am stupid proud of him! Plus, he is total sex on a stick, so there’s that, too.

Me…. I don’t really have a lot to report (at the moment) but shit is changing. My horizon is beginning to look a lot more pink, and the dark clouds are way behind me now. I have a few tricks up my sleeve… lets just say, what is coming next will be revolutionary in my life.

Like I said…. I’m back, bitches. But the me that is back isn’t the me you knew from before… I put myself back together differently this time.

*mic drop*

Diabetes life – More than needles and blood


Let me preface this with: my son has diabetes. It is new to us, but I am already very well versed in it, and don’t take lightly to BS being said about it. 

Now… 

When my son was diagnosed, other than losing my grandmother, it was the worst day of my life. My little boy, who was so funny and outgoing, and so full of life, would be thrown onto a new path and forced into a life he didn’t want. Heart. Shattered. 

But not only was he thrust into this life, we all were. His parents. His siblings. His friends (and their parents). His grandparents. His aunts and uncles. His teachers. His future girlfriends/wife. His future classmates. His future employers. People he has never met before are already impacted by this. 

Would we change our path if we could? No question about it!! But alas, his pancreas is gonna be a useless piece of shit forever now, so this is where we live. And this is where we deal. 

I keep saying “we”, as this is one hell of a team effort. My husband and I do the brunt of the work, but no one – NO ONE – does as much as our son! I’ll touch on that more in a bit. 

My husband and I are the ones who plan all of his meals, his snacks, his injection points; determine his carb to insulin ratios, how much long-lasting insulin to give; who hound him to drink lots of water; who make sure he gets lots of sleep and exercise; who deal with the random highs and sporadic lows. We are his first line of defense. 

Our other two boys help a lot. They help to put his lunches together, help to organize our pantry (which is a finely tuned machine on its own, with all of the food in it stacked in clear order, with the carb count written on top in sharpie) Our 4 year old hugs our DiaBadAss every time he has needles. And we play a game at mealtimes to see who can guess the closest to his blood sugar. It helps us all learn how he acts at different levels, and it helps him to learn how he feels at different levels. Plus, making it like a game takes some of the blah out of it. 

Here’s a “day in the life of” to show that we may make it look easy, but that is only because I am borderline OCD and am slightly Type A, and we work well together as a team. It doesn’t look easy because it is easy! Do not ever for a second think this is easy. We just deal a lot better than most:

On a regular (school) day, my son wakes up around 7:10, does the normal morning stuff and comes for breakfast. There, instead of sitting down and eating like most people are accustomed, he washes his hands, gets his kits and sits at the table. He then takes a strip out and gets his meter ready. Then he takes his lancing device, and patiently blows a small hole into his sensitive finger tip. He gently squeezes, wipes that drop off, and squeezes out a fresh drop, which he then gently places onto his ready test strip. While waiting for that number to appear, which will dictate the dose of fast-acting insulin he will have at that meal, he wipes his finger clean and gets his insulin pens out. Once the number comes up, we then begin determining the carb count for his breakfast, and using the blood sugar we just learned, and using his carb to insulin ratio for breakfast (and it’s different for all 3 meals in the day – something we had to painstakingly determine through trial and error) we figure out how much NovoRapid he will be taking. He then dials 2 units, shoots it into the lid, then dials in how many units he needs for breakfast (usually 4 units). Then he sticks that tiny needle into his tiny belly, and counts to 10, while the life-preserving smelly as hell insulin shoots into his non-existent fat (he has to pinch skin to create “fat” to inject into). Then once that needle is done, he gets his long-acting insulin ready to go. This one isn’t based on carbs, it’s an insulin he only takes once a day, and it lasts 24 hours (so they say). He primes this the same way, but through trial and error and what seems like a constant change in need, he takes the dose that we have determined is his “basal” need for the day. (It started out as 7 when he was first diagnosed, but over the course of 9 months, it’s increased to 14. That’s not to say it won’t decrease once school starts again, as being at school, he’s more active, but for now, it’s 14). He picks another spot on his poor needle torn belly, and sticks yet another needle into his pinched flesh. And only then, can he begin to eat his breakfast. Then we pack his lunch and snacks for the day, all the while counting his carbs, and writing everything down in his food log (including blood sugar tests and how much of each insulin he takes). Snack time rolls around at school, and he tests, texts me his number, and we determine if he can eat the snack was packed, or needs to replace it with a “free snack”(which we also pack, just in case), which is what he has when he is “out of range”. Lunchtime, and he pulls out everything we have marked as “lunch” in his lunchbox (so he knows what is snack and lunch, as it is exactly calculated), tests his blood get again, texts us the number, and we, recalling the carbs we packed for him and what his ratio is, tell him how many of his NovoRapid to take. Then he goes through the whole ordeal with priming and ramming himself with a needle, this time in the presence of his classmates and friends. The same is repeated for his afternoon snack, as well as his test when he gets home from school. Once dinner comes, we have already calculated his dinner carbs (after usually taking the packaging out of the garbage over and over, because we have forgotten the carbs, because that’s just what diabetes parents do!) and he goes through the whole situation again. 2-3 hours after dinner, he tests again, and if he is out of range/high, he takes correction insulin and grabs a bedtime snack (generally something free – he likes Whisps and cucumbers) and goes to bed.. And that’s when I take over. I test him around 10:30-11:00, and if he has correction insulin, again at 12:00. And every night, I wake up at 3:00 in the morning and check him. So on a typical night, I check him twice when he is sleeping. The nights he has insulin, I check 3-4 times. And the nights he is low and needs juice (which he drinks in his sleep)? I check him 5 times. With lows while sleeping, diabetics run the risk of slipping into a coma, and never waking up. While there is air in my lungs, that will not happen to my son. His life means more to me than 15 minutes of sleep. Then we wake up the next day, and round and round we go again. 

His doctors appointments are in a city 4 hours away. And we go every 3-6 months. (Every 3 right now). We are at the drugstore getting supplies every week and a half (his supplies take up over half of my previous liquor cabinet – how I drink less now, I’ll never know!) The pharmacists know us. The diabetic team know us by our first names (including our non-D kids). We do training with teachers at school, and several of them have our cell phone numbers saved in their phones. Our family and friends have been given crash courses on testing, needles, carb counting, radios, how to inject his glucagon for the emergencies in which he goes into a coma and can not eat his fast acting sugar. 

We have done more math in the last 9 months than I have in years. And you know what? He’s worth every tear, effort, sleepless night and frustration. 

There are a lot of misconceptions about diabetes, and I’ll touch on that another time… But what you need to take from this is: it’s hard. Every damned day is hard. It’s hard for us, but it’s the hardest for our son. Regardless of what we do or how much we put into this, it is only happening to our son. This is his life, we are just helping him learn how to make it be best possible. And I will continue to do so as long as he wants and needs me to. 

Period. 

Friends forever…

Forever? Or until something else better comes along? Or until life gets in the way? Or for really forever?

Friendship really is a strange concept, isn’t it? One day you are just walking around and then you see this other person and you say “hey. I like you. You are mine now”. And you just sort of adopt them into your inner circle and start including them in your life. So strange. You don’t know this person at all, but you consider them close enough to share drinks with (gross.. slobber is straight-up grody), share clothes with, share secrets with, share your life with. Admit it, it is SO STRANGE!

But think about it.. how lonely would life be if you didn’t have friends? How lonely would life be if you had no one to text all day long, hang out with at nights and on the weekend, to do trips and holidays with, to confide in, to bawl uncontrollably when life craps on you, to laugh with, to ask for opinions and advice, or to stand with you while you get married. I don’t know about you, but that sounds like some boring and lonely shit to me!

Good thing we have friends, hey? Yes. Having friends is a blessing, but it could also be seen as a curse. You get attached, you give a part of yourself to these people, you let them in, let down the walls, and show them who you really are. So what does that do to you when/if you lose them? Right. It destroys you. It is almost worse than a breakup, because when you breakup with someone, who do you call? Right! YOUR FRIENDS! So when you “breakup” with your friends, what do you do? You cry into your wine and then get pissed off because you’ve now watered down your last bottle of vino. It is a truly shitty deal, dude.

I am not saying that all friendships end in wasted wine, but not everything lasts forever. Sure, there are those blessed and magical friendships that can span even the largest spaces in time… but for the most part, people change, situations change, life changes.. shit happens. It is just the way that life can ebb and flow. And sometimes that ebb and flow lands you in a wave without a life vest. It sucks, but it is true. It hurts like a son of a bitch when you open up your heart and then watch that one character in your story slowly get written out. Pain, anguish and vats of salty watered down sauvignon blanc.

I know that popular saying says “thanks for the memories” but I really hate that. I have a very very very good memory, which often means a lot of unnecessary pain. I remember things that people have long forgotten about, I remember situations and how I felt, and how people have made me feel… and when I lose that, it stings, as it does with anyone. Somedays I wish my memory was less fantastic, but then I suppose I would miss my memory and all that it allowed me to hold on to.

I know I have written about friends before, but that post was an ode to the shitbaskets. I guess this post is more of a tribute to the good ones that may not necessarily be everyday participants in my circus anymore. I know there are a certain few who will always be there, in the background, and I take solace in that fact. But it doesn’t make it sting any less when I think back on how constant they used to be and no longer are. That’s not to say I blame them or hold a grudge… Just miss them and what used to be. It is always a shock to the system when you have a shift from constant to background, even if the shift happened slowly… slow or not, that shit shocks and stings.

Life changes, people change, situations change, nothing stays the same forever… There are a few certain people I want to stand on a rooftop and scream this to, with my tear saturated wine in hand: I will always have a space in my heart for you, you will always be a huge part of my history and a part of my happily ever after… I love and miss you…. and just like the stars, even though you may not always be able to see me, I am always there, just trying to make life a little bit more bright and sparkly for you.

Ten things not to say to a “boy mom”

I have all boys. It is a lot, some days. But I still love it. My boys are my world, and I wouldn’t trade them for anything. Do I sometimes wish I had a girl to do girly shit with? To take for pedicures and all of that? Sure. Sometimes. Then I think about the bras and clothes and periods and hair and boys and hormones and hormones and crying and tantrums and crying and nails and all of the stuff that comes with girls (just generalizing here, don’t jump up my ass for pigeon holing females.. speaking as a female, I can say this generalization is generally bang on)

BUT!!!! Boys are not easy. It’s not all hot wheels and skittles. To be honest, it is pretty close! But they come with their own list of challenges and issues, they are tiring and exhausting and confusing, just like every kid is. It has it’s moments of being insanely low maintenance, but, there are a few things about having all boys that drive me absolutely bat-shit crazy… I mean, after all, I am a mom, I have a crew off hooligans learning their way in the world, and that could drive anyone to the brink of insanity.

Frequently, in my daily swim in a sea of testosterone, I am repeatedly asked the same questions over and over, and the same remarks are made in regards to the sex of my offspring.

Here are a list of my top 10, but trust me, there are many many more.

#10. All boys? why yes! you are quite astute.

#9. It must get loud! yes, as most children do at one time or another, it does get loud.

#8. Wow, there must be a lot of smells! well, considering my children bathe, and are not cavemen, it doesn’t smell any more than any other human being would. but thanks for the concern for our hygiene.

#7. Boys are so much easier than girls – lucky! really!? is that so? thanks for letting me know.

#6. I am so glad I don’t have boys please come and say this to me when your girls are in their teens and you’re up-stream in estrogen river, and I am happily swimming in my sea of testosterone.

#5. Your grocery bill must be insane! yes, it is quite absurd, as most people’s are these days, but at least I will never have the enormous beauty costs that moms of girls will have.

#4. Boys aren’t as affectionate as girls, my girls always snuggle and want to cuddle well, that is interesting to learn. I will be sure to contemplate this remark the next time I have all three of my boys sitting on or beside me, giving me a hundred hugs and kisses every night, and telling me they love me more times a day than I can count.

#3. Bet you wish you had a girl – all that pink and pretty stuff is fun! nope.

#2. Gonna try for a girl? FUCK NO. I am fixed. My husband is fixed. We are done done done.

#1. Guess you will just have to keep trying for a girl! listen to me very carefully, I have 3 boys. I adore my boys. My life is complete. I do not feel like I am missing anything. I do not feel like I was shorted in life. I do not feel like I am less whole without someone with pigtails and attitude sauntering through my house. I am sure people adore their girls. But you know what? I adore my boys. PERIOD.

 

Maybe people should just stick to their own business and stop trying to tell me what sex of human to have in my house. I am a single female in a house of males, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

“baby” always applies…

I read this article the other night, and before I knew it, tears were involuntarily pouring and running down my cheeks. This lady was talking about her boys, and how they are no longer chubby cheeked toddlers, but these little mini-men who were pulling away into lives of their own, and my heart shattered.

I have three boys, spanning in age from 13-4. There is a big gap in there because the youngest is a product of my second marriage, and what I fondly call my “second chance at a happy ending”. My husband swooped in and saved me from myself, showed me that love is real, how it feels, and how swollen a heart can get when it is literally overflowing with love. I have ALWAYS adored my boys; for the longest time, they were the only source of my heart swelling feelings. Then I had a third little boy and got remarried, and now my heart is so full, it feels like it couldn’t possibly fill any more. But then I think about everything these boys are going to do and become, and I’m reminded of just how much more love I am going to encounter in my life.

My oldest is about to turn 13. A teenager. Really? How did that happen? I realize time has passed, I’m not that daft. But it feels like just a few months ago I was bringing this tiny little thing with a white-blonde mohawk home from the hospital. My first kid, at the absurdly young age of just 22. And there we were, learning it all together. He was a lot of firsts for me, the biggest being the first time I felt true, deep and real love. Until I held him in my arms, I just had no idea how real love felt. 

Then came my second bouncing baby, a mere 2 years and 3 months later. This one was a bit more of a struggle to get into the world. He’s been a stubborn little shit from the get-go. But again, I held him in my arms, and my heart pounded in a different way than it had even earlier that day. Having kids changes you. You don’t make room in your heart for them, your heart grows to accommodate all of the new love for these tiny little pieces of you. 

It was many years before my uterus housed another rib-cage orangutan. My oldest was 8 and middle was 6 when the final addition to our family came into the world. After my first two boys, and my husband and love of my life, I didn’t think my heart could grow bigger or pound harder than they made it, but I was wrong. My littlest guy was the final piece of our puzzle, and my heart finally felt complete. 

These little humans, these little pieces of me, they will always be my baby’s. From the moment they were a thought, until this very second, I have been around for every single moment of their lives. I know their looks, their tones, their noises, their laughs, their snores, their souls.. They are the best pieces of me and the biggest part of my heart.

Every time I refer to one of them as my “baby” I get a fresh serving of hell from certain people in my life. I’m not calling them a baby, nor am I being a clingy helicopter mom. But let’s face it, whether anyone approves or agrees, those three will always be my baby’s. When I look at them, I can still hear their baby noises in my head, remember my first scary moment with them, remember their first laughs, their favorite first foods, hear their tiny little cries, remember when they crawled, walked, ran, jumped, hurt themselves, said mommy.. Even typing it, my heart is pounding differently. 

People may get defensive and combative about mothers and their “special” bond with their children. That’s not to say that dads don’t feel things, too. But at the end of the day, my bond and attachment with my kids will always be a million times different than anyone else’s, because regardless of how much daddy’s love their baby’s, my kids heard my heart beat from the inside. Sure, they are half their fathers, but kids physically take, and keep, parts of their moms from when they were in the womb. I will always have a special attachment to my kids. And it will always be something that no one but me will understand or feel. 

Thinking about them growing up, not hugging me anymore, never being home, choosing their girlfriends over family time, going off to college, getting their own homes, having their own lives.. It makes me proud and excited, but it pulls at my heart – the heart that each of them helped build and expand – and it turns on my eyeball faucets. I’m so excited for their futures, because I know I’ve raised them to be the best versions of themselves.. But for now, for the time I have left, I’m going to kiss their foreheads while they sleep, rub their heads while they have breakfast in their pajamas, let them hug me a million times a day, smile when they call me mommy (mom is not far off), watch cartoons with them on Saturdays, laugh at their really silly jokes, listen to their stories, and look into their sweet innocent eyes – the same eyes I looked into when they were only minutes old. 

They’re my baby’s. They always will be. And even when they’re too old to call me mommy, that’s who I’m always going to be. 

A bad example? Or a cautionary tale?

Have you ever sat back and thought “holy shit, my life has been insane!” No? Just me? LIAR! Everyone has at least something that they look back on and reminisce and wonder how the hell they made it out alive. It can’t just be me. I mean, I have had a bit of a whirlwind life thus far, but I know for a fact that I am not the only person who has ever made a mistake or had shit thrown at them and lived to tell the tale.

This was all brought to my mind today, while telling a friend the “cliffs-notes” version of my life. I mean, I didn’t go back very far (only 8 years or so.. as the brunt of my “are you effing kidding me?!” started happening around my 28th year of life.. there was a shitstorm of epic proportions prior to that, but that’s a story for another day) I was spewing forth some of the happenings in my life, and a familiar catch in my throat appeared. Hello old friend, I haven’t had to swallow you in a while. Then it hit me. That shit is all behind me. Very behind me. I survived. Like Eminem said “that’s what happens when a tornado meets a volcano..” that is exactly how I feel like my life was for the longest time. A tornado and a volcano. But, I have been on solid ground for a while, and am so thankful for the ability to say that!

While telling my friend about all of my highs and my many many devastating lows, I wondered something – am I more of a bad example? A “what not to do”? Or am I a cautionary tale? Leading others on a path that may not land them in the shit that I dug myself out of? Interesting.

To some, I may seem like the worst example. Divorce. Single mother. All the other shit that was swirling at that time. To some, what I did and what I went through is considered heinous and abhorrent. Well, I am here to tell you, it wasn’t that bad. I am not a bad person. I just do not believe that people are required to stay unhappy forever. And once someone has done everything in their power to fix a perpetually broken and shitty situation, and it just isn’t fixing, then it is time to pack it up and move the hell on. Which is what I did! Was it easy? Hell no. Was it scary? Fuck yes! But I did it, and I survived (as did my kids!)

How about considering myself a cautionary tale? A “this is what happened to me due to these choices, and should you want to avoid this, perhaps don’t make these choices!” kind of situation. I am not sure I really want to be portrayed that way, either. But maybe it’s not so horrible. I maybe didn’t make “horrible” choices, per say. I made the same choices that millions of other people have, I just made them with the wrong people and at the wrong time. So, look to me for answers about what not to do, fine. But also know that if you happen down the same path that I did, and find yourself in the same crap-stew that I festered in for a very long time, know that one day, you will fight your way out of it, and you will find yourself even stronger and more resilient than you were before.

Cuz if I can survive everything I have, and still have a smile on my face, hope in my soul and love in my heart, than anything is effing possible. Well, maybe not anything.. I mean, I am still not a millionaire. HAHAHA!!