Monthly Archives: May 2012

Have You Hugged a Teacher Lately?

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We have reached the time of year that I think of as Mom Needs A Drink Season. Between end of year activities, Memorial Day band & scout stuff, picnics, parties, spring band and chorus concerts (also known as those times when I think about hanging myself with my camera strap), cheer goings on, and new this year, CLO camp, and dance recital – May and June are KILLER.

Somewhere in the middle of that, there will be a short beach vacation, during which I will drink every last weight watchers point in rum.

On Wednesday, I volunteered to help at the big end of year luau party at the girl’s school. They have crafts and a dance party and inflatables and “minute games.” I was assigned to a minute game called “This Blows.” True story. Someone at the school thought that “This Blows” was a perfectly good name for a game played by 5-11 year olds. Personally, I didn’t really care because I have a foul mouth and little class, but I am sure there are some parents out there who might not approve.

It wasn’t the name of the game that bothered me – it was the game itself. You had to blow up a balloon and then use the air to try and shot down a pyramid of cups. This resulted in me and my partners in misery to have to restack those fucking cups approximately eleventeen billion times. Mostly while kids blew them back down before we finished. Again and again. And again.

And if that wasn’t fun enough, let’s talk about balloons. You know what you get when you add kids and balloons? Spit, that’s what. Lots and lots of spit. The younger kids couldn’t blow up the balloons on their own, so they’d spit all over one, then shove it in your hands to blow for them. We would throw those spit bombs away and get fresh ones. And then dip our hands in a vat of hand sanitizer. Or they’d spit all over a balloon and decide it was “broken” and put it back in the pile, then we’d have to dive in and retrieve it before another little germ factory came along and shoved in in THEIR little spit hole.

The older kids did a better job of blowing up the balloons, but then they’d point them at the cups (and us, sitting behind the cups) and blow their spitty, germ gas all over us. Then we’d bathe in hand sanitizer again. Repeat eleventeen billion jillion times. In between groups of kids, they would ring a bell to let the kids know they had to move to the next station, and I came about thisclose to tackling the bell handler about 40 times and ringing the fuck out of it.

After it was over, I walked up to a group of teachers who were standing around talking (probably praying and planning their human sacrifices to speed up the time until school is out and they are free), and said, “I don’t know how you are not all raging alcoholics.” Seriously, y’all – find a teacher and HUG THEM. And then buy them a drink or two. Or twelve.

The spit is invisible, but I assure you, it was there:

I need one of these in my backyard: 
 

She didn’t weigh enough to stretch that cord at all:

But in the end, it was worth it, because it made this girl smile:

Unrelated – eclipse!


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Depression is a Thing with Tentacles.

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If hope is a thing with feathers*, depression is a thing with tentacles. Depression is sneaky. It creeps up behind you and taps you on the shoulder. And when you jump and turn around, it’s gone. “Whew,” you think, “Close one!” But what you don’t realize is that when you turned to the right to look for it, it didn’t actually disappear – it just moved to the left. And when you turned to the left, it moved right. It was behind you the whole time. Pretty soon, it taps you on the shoulder again. And again.  And pretty soon, both shoulders. See, depression is like an octopus –with more tentacles than you have arms. So as you are brushing one off your shoulder, it’s got another on your arm. So you brush that one off, too. But before you’re through, it has one around your calf and another around your waist. And while you’re thinking about those, there are two more back on your shoulders. And not long after that, it has you by the neck and pulls you in until you are too tired to fight. Or at least too tired to fight it off completely. You may pull away from some of those tentacles, but there always seems to be one that has you by the wrist or ankle.
Depression is a liar. It tells you that you are just being a baby. Depression tells you that you don’t have friends. That you aren’t worthy. That no one wants to hear about your feelings. Depression tells you that you are wrong about everything.  It makes you believe the worst about yourself. Depression tells you that you are hopeless, and then it feeds on your hopelessness. Depression grows strong as you grow weaker. Depression is an asshole. Depression is a thing with tentacles.
* Hope    
By Emily Dickinson
Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune–without the words,
And never stops at all,
And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.
I’ve heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

Random WTF

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The things that perplexed and/or pissed me off this past week:
At the girl’s soccer tournament (where she was an absolute BEAST in goal), there was a mom sitting nearby who was fair skinned & red-haired and looking like a lobster in the sun. Another mom and I told her she was getting burned and offered her some of our sunscreen, and she said, “Thanks, but I want to burn. I put a bunch of oil on before I came so I can burn. I like to burn. I never peel or anything – just burn.” Um…OK? I’m glad you don’t peel or anything. How about skin cancer – do you get that?
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I generally like the soccer games – you don’t get the drama you have with some of the other sports & activities, and all the parents get along. But I can’t say the same for the other teams’ parents. We have had several games in a row where parents have encouraged their kids to play dirty – tripping and elbowing, have made fun of and harassed kids on our team, and  – my favorite – one mom who actually said she was going to “punch [one of our seven year old girls] in the fucking face.” Klassy!
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We had to take the girl to the emergency room for x-rays on Saturday evening (nothing is broken, but she is enjoying her crutches nonetheless – crutches are a MUST HAVE in the second grade circles). Anyway, they were concerned about her growth plates, so we had to head back to radiology several times during our visit and sit in the tiny radiology waiting room until it was our turn. One of those times, we had to share the waiting room with a woman whose son was getting an x-ray. While she waited, she decided she would eat her big, stinky sandwich. With her mouth open. While making as many chewing, slurping, licking, chomping sounds as possible. While dripping ketchup all over the cloth couches in the waiting room. My favorite part was when the nurse wheeled her son out and stopped outside the door so she could follow them back to his exam room, she said (through a full mouth of disgusting, chewed food) “Hold on,“ and proceeded to put MORE ketchup on her sandwich, then FINISH the sandwich while the nurse and her son waited n the hallway. She made me feel good about my own parenting.
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And speaking of the ER – Lord help me, but I want to punch those people who bring their kids in for the sniffles.
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On the way home from the hospital, we stopped for something to eat, since we hadn’t eaten all day and were starving and as we sat in Steak & Shake, we saw a sight to behold. A mother and daughter who looked like that crazy tan lady that was just on the news.  I wanted to post a photo, but then I remembered this:
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 I put it on a shirt and I’m wearing it everywhere.