Friday, February 29, 2008

I had such a good time, so why do I feel guilty?

Today I joined a group of four other ladies for an early matinee followed by lunch. We saw "The Other Boleyn Girl," (Great movie, but boy, am I glad I didn't live during that time! My neck hurts just thinking about it!) and then had lunch at Ruby Tuesday (Gotta love that white chicken chili!). I so rarely get together with a group of people to do anything like that, therefore today was a real treat. Even though I met two of the ladies for the first time, the fact that all of us are military spouses gives us a common bond. It was a lot of fun and I hope we have the opportunity to get together again soon.

Before pulling out of the parking lot I checked phone messages at home. There was a message from my oldest son, and as I listened, my heart sank. It seems he had a "Class Cabaret" performance at school today, something he'd mentioned, but hadn't brought up in a few days. To my knowledge parents weren't invited, so I'm assuming this was just something the band members in my son's class were putting on for the entire class. Anyway... long story made short... he'd forgotten his trumpet and sheet music and wanted to know if I could bring it to him.

Forgetting the trumpet isn't an uncommon occurrence, and I've taken it to school more than once when this has happened. No big deal. But today I wasn't at home when my son called, and he didn't call my cell phone, so I had no idea he needed me. I quickly called the school, knowing it was probably too late to come to the rescue, but the lady in the office knew nothing of this performance and couldn't locate the band teacher to inquire. I was also 20-30 minutes away from the school and it was 2:15 or so when I called, so there was nothing to do but just drive home.

Now I'm at home waiting for the kids to get off the bus and I feel terrible! I know I deserved to enjoy a day out with friends and I've done nothing wrong, so why do I feel guilty? As unrealistic as it may sound, I just feel like I've let my son down and wasn't there when he needed me. It's like "mommy guilt run amuck." I hate this feeling!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

A real stand up kinda guy

I've mentioned before that I love my husband for lots of reasons. Sometimes I overlook reasons I love him and then I'm reminded when something special happens, like at our son's basketball game on Saturday...

Our 11-year-old's basketball team started their playoffs over the weekend and were playing in the first round that afternoon. Three of the team members' dads are coaches, including my husband who happens to be an assistant.

Our team has had a great season (5-2 overall) and we were playing against the best team in the leaugue, the team that is undefeated. One of our better players wasn't there on Saturday, which was unfortunate since he leads us in scoring and is the best ball handler on the team.

The game was so exciting! It was close the entire time and eventually went into overtime, not once but twice. Double overtimes are nail-biting, heart-pounding, gut-wrenching times for me. Our kids played really hard and did their best, but they lost the game in the end.

Now to the special thing that happened that reminded me once again why I love my husband so much...

In our basketball league there are rules about kids sitting out a certain number of quarters so that everyone gets a chance to play as well as rest. The group of kids who were on the floor at the end of regulation play were the same kids that played in the 1st overtime. When the game went into the 2nd overtime, the coach was having difficulty deciding whether to leave the lineup alone or make substitutions. There were three kids sitting on the bench who hadn't played since the 3rd quarter, which meant they were "cold." And the three players these kids would be substituted for just happened to be the three coaches' kids.

The coach looked at my husband and told him he couldn't make the decision. Here were these kids who'd played so hard and their dads were sitting there on the bench as well. I'm sure it was a tough decision. The coach asked my husband to decide what to do.

My husband made substitutions and allowed the three kids who'd been sitting out for a long time to play. The other team's coach kept his same lineup in, not substituting one player. Who made the smarter move? I don't really know, but I know who made the best move. We don't know if we'd have won the game if our lineup hadn't changed, but that wasn't the point. The point of the game for kids this age is learning and having fun, and the only way to do that is to allow them all equal playing time.

A few people had something to say about my husband's decision after the game. One coach from another team said he'd have left in his best players and a parent on our own team couldn't believe what he'd done. My husband just felt it was the right thing to do and he wouldn't have felt good about continuing the game any other way.

So there you go... another reason to add to the mound of reasons I love my husband. He's a real stand up kinda guy!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Laughter is the best medicine!

My kids crack me up sometimes. My oldest, in particular, is starting to develop quite the sense of humor. While eating lunch on Saturday, my youngest son was telling me about his basketball practice, and listing the names of the kids who'd shown up that day. He told me Simon was there and unsure which kid that was, I asked, "Who's Simon?"

That's when my oldest son, not even missing a beat, said very seriously, "You know, Mom, he's one of the chipmunks." (Insert drum sound like at a comedy club) Oh, that boy reminds me of my father-in-law, who is forever making a joke.


Later we were watching TV with the boys and there was a very dramatic scene unfolding during this show where a SWAT team was called in. My youngest son said, "What's a 'squat' team?"

Admittedly, it doesn't sound all that funny now, but trust me, it WAS funny. You had to be there. I nearly peed my pants.

Who needs to read the comics when I have two comics of my own? Isn't laughter, especially unanticipated laughter, truly the best medicine?

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Mom, look what I can do!

Kids get so excited when they've learned a new skill, don't they? I remember when I was a kid and I learned to tie my shoes, snap my fingers and whistle, all around the same time. I thought I was the coolest!

My children are no different. As soon as they've acquired a new skill, they want to show me and everyone else willing to watch and/or listen. After all, what's special about this newly acquired skill if you can't share it with others, right?

My 8-year-old son came up to me a couple of days ago, excited beyond measure, saying, "Mom, look what I can do!" Naturally I dropped everything and gave him my complete and undivided attention. And this is what he did...


Isn't that special and worthy of high praise? We're so proud!

I just looked at my son, trying my best to stifle a giggle, and said, "Where did you learn to do that?" I've never seen or heard my oldest doing the armpit noise maneuver, and of course my husband and I don't either, so where did our son pick up this wonderful new skill?

My son tells me that a friend of his from church taught him.

"Which friend?" I ask.

Turns out it's our preacher's daughter who's been teaching our son these new tricks. You know, I've always heard that PKs (Preacher's Kids) are the ones you have to look out for and now I know it's true. I might just have to have a heart-to-heart with our preacher regarding the corruption of our child.

Friday, February 22, 2008

We're having an "ice day!"

It's 11:09am as I begin blogging and I'm still in my jammies. Why? Icy weather has made its way to the DC area and the kids are out of school today. My boys are broken-hearted, of course, and are forcing themselves to play the Wii all day today. I'm "piddling," (a very technical term I might add) doing a little of this and a little of that. You know... emailing, googling, playing, blogging... all on the computer. I'm ignoring all the things I really need to be doing and I'm enjoying every precious minute of it!

My sweet husband has been away all week on a business trip and he was due to return yesterday afternoon, however, the ice that my children were so excited about getting actually fell in the area where my husband currently is and his flight was ultimately canceled. Hopefully he'll be able to make it home today.

I think I really needed an "ice day." I'd been running to and fro all week, seemingly busy every second, but not really accomplishing a whole lot. Ever have days (and weeks) like that? Today is just a relaxing kind of day with nowhere to be (except the metro station later today when I pick up my man) and nothing pressing to do. Praise God for giving us a day to just chill! Days like today are few and far between and I appreciate them when they come along unexpectedly.

Gee, all this "work" on the computer has really worn me out. (Yawning now...) I think I might be in need of a short nap.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

My Little American Idol

Like I've mentioned before, I'm an American Idol fan, and it's just gotten more interesting now that the top 24 singers have been chosen and they are performing live this week. I watched the guys perform last night and was fairly impressed. I was all set to watch the girls do their thing tonight and realized I was going to have to miss a little of the show due to picking up my oldest son from basketball practice (My husband is out of town, so I'm single parenting this week). Now this really cramps my style as American Idol is practically the only show I try not to miss. These coaches really shouldn't schedule practices on American Idol night. I mean REALLY!

Our boys like the show too and when my youngest son and I had to leave to run taxi service for his brother, I asked him, "Do you want to be on American Idol one day?"

He looked at me as if I was high and said, "No!"

I said, "Why not? You have a great singing voice!"

He said, "Yeah, I know I have a good voice." The kid DOES have self-confidence, doesn't he?

Then he looks at me and says, "Do you really think American Idol will still exist when I'm 16?"

Good point.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Elementary Math?

My son came home today with a math problem that has stumped me, and I've had to email it to my husband since he's out of town for a couple more days. I feel so stupid because this is supposed be ELEMENTARY math and yet I don't get it. Here's the problem...

Find a set of numbers that will satisfy the following conditions:
The median of a set of 20 numbers is 24.
The range is 42.
To the nearest whole number the mean is 24.
No more than three numbers are the same.
Show your strategy.

Please tell me this is challenging and I'm not just plain ignorant! Did you have math like this in ELEMENTARY school? I know I didn't. I realize they want kids to think outside the box and that's great, but this is way beyond thinking outside MY box. I think I might need a math tutor to help me help my son.

NEWS FLASH UPDATE: I finally figured out the math problem and, believe it or not, I didn't even need my husband's help... THIS time!

Wanted: A Circle of Friends

I talked to my girlfriend in Delaware today to wish her a happy birthday and she was preparing for her "stamp club" buddies to arrive. These ladies get together on a regular basis to rubber stamp and have a blast. While we were talking, I could hear people arriving and I knew a couple of the women there and it made me miss the social life I once had.

There's something really special about being part of an Air Force flying squadron. People develop very close, tight-knit relationships. I especially loved that about our spouses' group. I suppose it was partially because we were all in the same boat. Our husbands (for most of us) were gone and we longed for understanding and a sense of belonging, so we naturally gravitated toward one another.

I had the great fortune of being part of a group of six women who got together once a week for coffee, gossip and therapy. Little did I know it was the best therapy around, especially now that I no longer have that in my life. I've never laughed or cried so much in my life as I did during the times spent with these incredibly wonderful women. These ladies were the sisters I never had and I loved each of them dearly. They each brought something very unique to our circle of friendship and I learned a lot from our times together. These ladies were strong and capable, yet often vulnerable and sometimes fragile. We shared so much of our lives - from our kids to TDYs to PCS moves and everything in between.

If I have any creativity at all, I'd venture to say it's because of these talented ladies. They each had special gifts - scrapbooking, quilting, rubber stamping, poetry, floral design, painting, party planning... You name it and they could do it! I knew where to turn when I needed a creative idea, and most of the time, my girlfriends would pitch in and help me accomplish my task.

These ladies lifted my spirits when my husband was deployed. They showed up for my sons' birthday party, helped out in my husband's absence and comforted me when my oldest was clobbered and given a black eye during the "happy" event (That's deserves a whole blog by itself). They watched my kids when I was sick. They helped me decorate my house for the spouses' Christmas party. They entertained me, listened to me, cared for me, fed me (probably too much) and welcomed me. They were great times I will always hold dear to my heart.

Life is ever-changing though. Our circle of friendship has changed too. I've moved away, as have a couple of other girlfriends. Two of our girlfriends' husbands have retired from the military. We'll likely never be in the same place at the same time again. That makes me a little sad sometimes, but that's reality.

I have friends here, but it's a different atmosphere altogether. Living near our nation's capitol is awesome in many ways, but the "busy-ness" of our lives and the fact that we aren't associated with a tight-knit group of people, has made me realize even more how blessed I was to have had that circle of friends in my life. We have old friends who live nearby, but because we're so busy with our kids' activities and my husband is doing the daily commute to the city and back, we don't often have time for anything else.

I have a couple of girlfriends I occasionally meet individually for coffee or lunch, and perhaps a little shopping if time allows, and I always look forward to and enjoy those times very much. My husband and I have become involved in our Sunday school class at church and there are the occasional socials we attend, which are fun as well. I guess I just miss the camaraderie found in a small, intimate circle of friends. The conversation, the laughter (and sometimes tears), the creative outlet... Will I ever find that again? I sure hope so.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Has anyone tried to comment lately?

Okay, maybe I'm in need of a confidence booster or something. No one has commented on my blog for DAYS and I'm beginning to wonder if I'm boring (could be), have unintentially offended everyone (could be) or if something is jacked up with the functionality of the Blogger comment option (I hope this is the case). Would someone please try to leave a comment so I know the REAL scoop? I'm a big girl... I can take it.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Valentine Mailbox

Just had to share this cute valentine mailbox my 2nd grader made in his class this week. All the kids had these on their desks at the Valentine's Day party and they were so proud of their special mailboxes. Shoeboxes were used for the base, but any size box will do. My son thought this was so cool that he came home and made two more mailboxes. You can see the flag on the side, but after lugging it home, it somehow bent and now it doesn't stand up. Oh well...

So many art projects are made and sent home during the school year, and they don't always stand out as being particularly creative, but I really liked this one. I might just have to make one of my own!

Aaaahhh... now THAT feels good!

My husband and I went out last night in celebration of Valentine's Day. We had given one another our individual gifts on Thursday night, but since we were hosting a Cub Scout meeting for our oldest son's den that same night, we decided to wait until Friday to go out. It was so worth the wait!

We did something we'd never done before... We had a couple's massage at a local day spa and salon. Now, before you get the idea that we did something kinky, let me set your mind at ease and assure you we did not. We're conservative people around here! We just had regular massages in the same room. Sorry to scare anyone with the visual you might have just experienced. All the private areas were fully covered at all times, if that helps you.

My husband's massage therapist was a woman and mine was a man. The man nearly massaged the very hide right off my body! He awakened muscles and tissue and veins and even the tiniest of cells in my out-of-shape body. Yowza! I slept like a log last night too! I'm a little sore this morning, feeling as if I might have actually worked out yesterday.

My favorite part of the massage, besides the relaxed feeling I had afterwards, was the foot massage (I LOVE a foot massage!) and the warm, wet towels that were used, particularly the ones under my neck and on my feet. Ooh-la-la! I need to do that here at home! It felt SSSSOOOOOOOOO GOOOOOOOOOD!

You know some people really don't like massages, which I don't get at all. I wonder if it's just the idea of a stranger touching their bodies that makes them uncomfortable or embarrassed. I figure massage therapists have seen so many people's bodies that nothing phases them. They might have a good laugh at my expense after I've left the premises ("Good Lord, did you SEE the cellulite on that woman's legs?"), but who cares? I don't know about it and I feel too good to give a hoot anyway!

Never had a massage? Life is short and time's a-wastin'! Go and let me know how you feel afterward...

Friday, February 15, 2008

Kids' Classroom Parties

Our boys' school allows two classroom parties per year, one being a Valentine's Day party. Yesterday was all about valentines, sugar, games and the like, and the boys had a great time. I was able to attend both parties, but I almost missed out on my younger son's party.

The "room parent" plans these things and I totally appreciate the fact that there is a mom in both of our kids' classrooms willing to take on this responsibility. These volunteers are often underappreciated and taken for granted, it can be difficult to get other parents to respond and take an active role in classroom events and, goodness knows, it's impossible to please everyone.

Both boys' parties were great! They were well-planned and executed and the kids had fun, which is the ultimate goal. Something bothered me though and I need to vent about it just a little. My younger son's classroom parent didn't send out any kind of communication regarding the Valentine's Day party until two days prior, and then she emailed all the parents to say that everything had been taken care of, no help was needed, but anyone who wanted to stop by the classroom for the party was welcome to come. It's like this room mom just made every decision regarding the party, from the games to the craft to the refreshments. She did everything!

I appreciate this woman's willingness to do everything for our kids. It's a very generous gesture and I want to believe that she had the best of intentions in that she probably just wanted to be sure the kids had an enjoyable time. I just felt that the rest of the parents were shut out of the party altogether. It would have been nice if all parents were made aware of the exact date and time of the party in advance. Many parents work full-time or have other obligations that prevent them from being able to come in to the classroom without advance notice. There may have been more parents present had they KNOWN about the party beforehand. These moments with our kids are fleeting! Kids want their parents to come share these special times with them. Give families this opportunity!

Even if parents aren't able to come into the classroom for various events, they might want to do something to help out, like sending in a treat. My mom was a working mom when I was growing up, but she often sent in cookies whenever we had parties. It made her feel as if she were contributing and doing her part, not to mention the fact that it made me feel as if she really cared. I felt special because she made the effort for me. Every kid wants to feel as if his/her parent has done something special for the class. It makes them feel proud!

I just want to be a part of my sons' school experiences as long as they're still excited about me being there. I know there will likely come a time when having me show up in their classrooms is no longer cool. When there are opportunities to celebrate and party with my boys, I want to be there. That's hard to do if parents aren't informed and given a chance to participate in the special times.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

I love being in love!

Today is Valentine's Day, the day set aside to show our love to that someone special in our lives. I've been reminiscing about how my husband and I came to be a couple... how we met and what drew us to one another. Our love story might never become a made-for-TV special, but in my heart, it's the sweetest, most romantic story ever told. And I think that's way everyone should feel about their marriage.

Both my husband and I have had previous marriages. Sometimes we refer to those marriages as "previous lives." I like to look upon that first time around as a "trial run" of sorts. That's a joke of course because it wasn't meant to be a trial run at all. I think that's part of why I feel so blessed today. I've been unhappy and felt despair in a relationship, and I never want to feel that again. My husband has felt the same. We found one another and were given a second change at happiness, and we don't take that for granted.

"How do I love thee? Let me count the ways." Is that Elizabeth Barrett Browning? I'm not well-read, so I'm not sure, but I know I've heard that quoted so many times over the years. Makes me think about the MANY ways I love my husband. I love him because...

... he loves me.

... he makes me laugh.

... he's a patient, loving father.

... he's generous.

... he's a godly man.

... he's a big ol' softy.

... he gives the greatest hugs.

... he has kind eyes.

... he has integrity.

... he's honest without being insensitive.

... he's encouraging and positive.

... he always looks nice.

... he smells good.

... he brings me popcorn and O.J. for a late-night snack.

... he lets me vent and cry if I need to.

... he's playful.

... he cheers for my beloved UK Wildcats.

... he treats my family like they're his family.

... he tries to be here when we need him.

... he never tells my secrets.

... I can trust him.

There are lots more reasons to love this wonderful man in my life. He's my best friend and my soul mate. I love loving him and think we go together just like "peas and carrots" (Forrest Gump). I'm thankful God saw fit to bring us together and pray we have LOTS more years to be sweethearts.


Tuesday, February 12, 2008

You want me to do WHAT?

A few days ago I shared with the whole world the fact that I'd recently had a mammogram. If you read the post, you'll remember I wasn't exactly thrilled with the sensation of having my breasts flattened like pancakes over and over again. Well... looks like I'll have the distinct pleasure of going back next week and repeating the fun I had less than two weeks ago.

Someone called to say the radiologist had read the report and now I'm being requested to return for "additional views to complete my study." Excuse me? You want me to do WHAT?

I don't know what you're thinking, but I'm thinking that means one of two things... either the x-ray tech messed up the first time or they've found something questionable. Since I've never had any previous problems and breast cancer doesn't run in my family, I'm thinking the x-ray tech fouled up and they just don't want to admit that. Of course it's not like the person on the phone will actually TELL you one way or the other. They're not allowed to give out that kind of information to patients. Sigh...

It's bad enough to have to endure ONE mammogram a year, but TWO? Give me a break!

Where's my motivation?

I need to lose weight and get in shape, but I don't want to do what it takes to lose weight and get in shape. It's a real commitment, one I've made before and succeeded at... and yes, I gained the weight back. I could just kick myself for allowing THAT to happen. Anyway, I know I can do this, but I have to get in the right mind set and jump start this diet and exercise routine. It seems all of my girlfriends are experiencing great success in their personal weight loss programs. I just wish I felt the motivation to join them. How do I get there?

Saturday, February 9, 2008


Our boys received FLARP! noise putty for Christmas. I'd never heard of this stuff before, but leave it to my younger brother, who's still a big kid at heart, to find this goo that resembles something like a combination of slime and silly putty. The REALLY important distinguishing factor is that this product simulates fart noises. Is that the ultimate boy gift or what? The boys have had countless hours of fun with this disgusting stuff. Check it out...

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Love is in the air!

It's a week until Valentine's Day! I've purchased a gift and card to give my sweet husband, but I want it to remain a secret, and since he occasionally reads here, I can't tell you what it is. I hope he likes it! We're also planning on getting a sitter and going out to dinner and possibly a movie the weekend following Valentine's Day. It's difficult to manage a night out during the week, so we're waiting until the weekend, which works much better for us. That'll just make the holiday last a little longer.

I'm truly surprised by the number of couples who don't actually do anything out of the ordinary for one another on Valentine's Day. WHAT? Where's the love? Where's the romance? Please tell me I'm not the only hopeless romantic around!

I'm not referring to the purchasing of an expensive gift, although that's always a good choice. :) No, what I'm suggesting is showing that special someone, be it your husband or wife, boyfriend or girlfriend, how much you love them in a way that will be meaningful to both of you. You don't have to break the bank to do that either. There are so many ways to say "I love you!"

I just couldn't imagine allowing Valentine's Day, a holiday all about love and caring, go by without letting my husband know what he means to me. I hope I never get too old, too settled, too comfortable or too "whatever" to forget to show and tell him that he's still the one for me.

So, tell me... What special something are you doing for your special someone in celebration of Valentine's Day? Inquiring minds wanna know!

Nostalgic 70's TV

I've managed to be at home a good portion of the day for the last couple of days and I've had the opportunity to surf TV channels. We get a station that airs reruns of "The Waltons" and "Little House on the Prairie," both of which I watched faithfully as a child. My grandparents watched these shows as well, thus when I happen to catch one of these rerun episodes, I start feeling nostalgic, remembering my grandparents, both of whom have long passed on.

Those were the days when TV was relatively clean and frequently wholesome, unlike today where we're bombarded with foul language and completely inappropriate viewing choices for children (and adults too in my opinion). It seems anything goes nowadays, which is really a shame.

I love those old shows! Sure, they were pretty sappy sometimes, but they portrayed strong family values and morals and a good life lesson at the heart of every episode.

I watched part of "Little House on the Prairie" yesterday. Do you remember the episode where Mary Ingalls lost her vision? I'd seen it years ago, so I knew the storyline. Nothing was a surprise to me, except the tears I found myself shedding over poor Mary's blindness. Pass the tissues, please! If you're ever in need of a good cry, just watch an episode of "Little House on the Prairie." Michael Landon's big ol' puppy dog eyes will make you break down every single time. Ahhhh... nostalgic 70's TV...

Wednesday, February 6, 2008


Something really special occurred a couple of nights ago and I wanted to share it because it made such an impression on me. It had to do with a phone call we received from a friend, but before I tell you about the phone call, I have to back up and give you a little recent history.

My husband and I hosted a Sunday school gathering in our home a couple of Saturdays ago. We were providing chili and soup and the rest was potluck. We love chili and soup because it's just good ol' comfort food, my favorite kind!

I decided I wanted to give our friends a jar of soup mix to take home, a party favor of sorts. You've seen those decorative jars with layered ingredients inside, right? That's what I did... layered the ingredients and decorated the jars with a valentine theme. I attached the recipe and added a different Bible scripture to each jar. Each scripture contained the word "love."

A few friends weren't able to make the social, but I'd put together enough jars of soup mix for everyone, so we took them to class the next day and gave them to those who'd missed out.

As it turns out, one of our classmates lost his mother last week. He called us to say that he'd had a difficult time eating, either not having an appetite or simply not being able to keep food down. He'd been unloading some items from his vehicle and came across the jar of soup mix we'd given him. He decided to make the soup for himself. He was able to eat it and keep it down, something he hadn't been able to do for a week.

Evidently the soup helped calm our friend's stomach and made him feel better. He told us he felt there was something other than sustenance in that soup mix. He said he knew it had come from Christian friends and he thought it was somehow a spiritual gift in his time of need. Wow! Praise God for putting His healing, comforting hands on this man! How humbled I felt hearing how that soup mix had meant so much to a friend. One never knows the impact of a simple gesture of friendship. Makes me want to put together a whole bunch more jars and hand them out to everyone I see!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Why I do what I do...

I'm a stay-at-home mom. While I love being available for my family, there are times when I doubt I'm doing anything of great importance with my life. I don't think doing the laundry or the cooking or the cleaning or the grocery shopping or the errand-running or the volunteering are going to win me any big awards. It's all necessary stuff that has to be done, but let's face it... it's not rocket science!

I could have a career that earns me a substantial paycheck and perhaps a little respect to go along with it. Hmmmm... I'm envisioning going to work every day in a nice suit, perhaps carrying a briefcase, going to meetings... Important stuff!

But if I had that career, and wasn't as available for my family, my son wouldn't likely have come home yesterday, excited about the upcoming classroom Valentine's Day party, and ask me if I could possibly make some heart-shaped sugar cookies to bring when I come to help out at the party next week. Okay, I'm seeing the importance in my "job" once again and I'm reminded why I do what I do.

Friday, February 1, 2008

The things I go through just to be violated!

I know we women have to take care of ourselves and be our own health advocates. We need to have regular check-ups... pap smears and mammograms, etc. I'm a responsible adult and I take these things quite seriously, however, there are those times when you just don't want to go to the appointment.

Last night I had a mammogram. All things pointed to me either missing or simply cancelling last night's appointment. The clinic usually calls to remind people of their appointments. I never received a reminder phone call and I'd even forgotten to add the "event" to my computer calendar. I did, however, remember to write it in my date book, so there it was... plain to see... I had a mammogram scheduled for Thursday, January 31st. I couldn't ignore it like I wanted.

My husband is out of town and that meant I had to take my kids with me. I don't really need company when getting my breasts smashed. Seriously... it's not a group kind of activity. Thankfully the boys didn't ask questions about what I was doing. I told them I was there for a check-up, which wasn't a lie. I just omitted the details of said check-up.

Last night my oldest son had to study for a math test, so we were in a time crunch to get homework done and dinner prepared and eaten before leaving for my appointment. Another excuse not to leave my house for any reason! Amazingly enough, the homework went smoothly and so did dinner, therefore I had plenty of time to get ready for my mammogram.

We left home with ample time to get to the clinic, but didn't get a half mile down the road when we came upon an accident with police and an ambulance on the scene. The road was blocked and we had to detour. I wasn't real familiar with the route we had to take and was concerned about where we'd end up and if I'd be able to make it to the clinic on time. Good Lord, why didn't I just cancel the appointment?

We were approaching the clinic with only a few minutes to spare, when I just passed by the entrance as if I were lost. I can't tell you how many times I've turned in to this entrance. I suppose I could blame my mistake on the fact that it was dark and I was preoccupied. Whatever! I was wasting valuable, precious time! I had to turn around and go back.

Then I couldn't decide where I should park. The well woman clinic is toward the far end of the building and upstairs, so I figured I should park on that side of the building. I ended up parking in a location reserved for emergency room patients, but I didn't care. There was plenty of parking and I chanced it, setting what I'm sure was a fine example for my children.

The boys and I practically ran to the building. I didn't want to be turned away after going through so much to get to this appointment. We went upstairs to the well woman clinic and then it dawned on me that they only do paps here. I'd already been there and done that a couple of weeks ago. The mammograms are performed in radiology. DUH! Wake up, McFly! So we hurried back to the elevator and went back downstairs to find radiology.

No one was at the desk in radiology. I made some noise so someone would realize there was life in the lobby and after several minutes, someone finally rounded the corner. After filling out some paperwork, I was in a room waiting for the tech to start the mammogram.

The tech was very pleasant and all was going well until she put my breast into the "vice" and smashed it. I think I saw stars! In fact, I know I did! I've had two other mammograms in my life and neither of them came close to hurting as much as this one. Yowza! This woman, who had seemed so nice, had just transformed into the devil himself right before my very eyes. They tell you to hold your breath when they squeeze your breast for the x-ray. Yeah, no problem because I CAN'T BREATHE! I jumped through hoops for this? The things I go through just to be violated!