Just when I thought everything was going smooth the universe made the executive decision to throw a wrench into my peace. Does everyone agree that Lisa appears to be content? Good, bring in the wrench, please. On second thought, make it a double.
It’s been 6 months since I was blindsided, and the universe has been somewhat kind, but recently it has decided to shake things up a bit. As if watching the News wasn’t enough.
My son decided to move out of his apartment and back HOME. The problem with this big fat wrench is he didn’t come alone. He brought his endless appetite, wash, sneakers the size of Pennsylvania and a school project that entails constructing something that has now taken over my entire house. Remember the movie The Blob? It’s like that over here.
My nature is very easy peasy. Little things like gigantic sneakers and piles of wash have never bothered me before, well, maybe not never. But, certainly not at the level of wanting to set the house on fire to make them go away. This is the result of holding in an emotional fart.
Clearly, there are some underlining things going on with me to stir up this level of emotion, and now you lucky readers who were drawn in my clever title get to read about it. Sorry, not sorry.
Although my life keeps moving forward one snail slide at a time, and the memories start to fade, they don’t leave, they linger. Like the crowd you see at Starbucks sucking up the free wi-fi ALL DAY.
The problems I’m facing now are the reminders. Not the “don’t forget we need milk” kind, the “my therapist would like you to come in next week” kind. It is the equivalent of being shot out of a cannon right back to October 12th. Why can’t I take a cannonball ride back to 1974 when I was free of concerns, other than the daunting decision to ride my bike or play jump rope?
In some ways, it’s good to go so I can get a feel as to what’s going on inside my man’s head. In other ways, it drains me for days. Literally paralyzing me from doing what I enjoy. I don’t read, write or go to the gym. I find myself stuck in a cloud of never ending thoughts. In my head, it’s like trying to figure out a math equation that has multiple answers. I HATE MATH!
Of course, I know it’s all part of the process, and that the process is the best thing for everyone and that it’s working, but for god sakes, it’s a lot to deal with when you’re just trying to deal period. Hence the thought that FIRE would be the way to go with ridding my house of clutter.
At this point in my life, I think it’s safe to say that the universe shops at Sears and there is just an obvious endless sale on Craftsman wrench sets, so I need to take responsibility, tighten my helmet, fasten my seatbelt and just … Enjoy the Ride! One long speed bump at a time.
Just a little update to let the world know that yes, Peanut and Landon have been accepted to Camp Bow Wow! I know, I’m still in awe at their success.
As you can see during their interview they clearly nailed it. Just look at those wagging tails working the room like they own the damn place.
I was able to witness everything through my Camp Cam App. I think I missed my calling. The level of enjoyment I received stalking my dogs was alarming at best. Surveillance engineer or stalker … that line is very thin.
After some initial formalities of the meet and greet portion of their interview, Peanut & Landon were taken to socialize with the other members. I’ll assume this is where business cards and bones were exchanged.
I know what you’re thinking, “everyone gets in Lisa, it’s a game.” I’m not going to lie, this did cross my mind. Part of me thought I was being forced to jump through hoops in order to make me believe my fur babies were extra special, but then I witnessed Bella, the 6-pound chihuahua mix shaking like a leaf in her Burberry knockoff coat as her owner told her “you flunked” while he was handed her rejection notice. Oh yea, right in front of us.
For the record, Bella seemed quite pleased with this outcome, however, her owner was now forced to continue making Martinis for her all day. I’m guessing she likes them dirty at night.
It was all good at the end of the day. Peanut proudly received his acceptance notification as he posed for the camera, knowing full well this beauty would be on display for the world to see on the refrigerator a/k/a … the box of honor.
Landon on the other hand …….
Something tells us he was “accepted” because siblings are an automatic admission.
It doesn’t matter if you’re shaking like Bella, smiling like Peanut or winging it like Landon just make sure you … Enjoy the Ride!
It’s funny how during all of the darkness over the past month, we have been able to see some light. A glimmer here a glimmer there help the heart heal.
We are both very big believers in noticing the signs that are sent our way, and we were not blind to them even during the darkest of times. Hope comes in all shapes and sizes, the key is recognizing it.
The day after the nightmare began, I went with my daughter to see my husband at the hospital. While walking through the lobby we were greeted by a very friendly face. Sister Kate. The world is so small.
I know Sister Kate from my job, and I haven’t seen her in a couple of years. Our relationship is she is a patient and I’m in shock that this nice, warm, funny person is a Catholic nun. Where the hell were YOU when I was in school is ALWAYS my thought when I see her.
Sister Kate immediately knew from my haggard look that something was wrong. This was the first time I uttered the words “My husband tried to take his life” and the flood-gates opened. Her warm kind hug is just what I needed before heading to face my reality. Never underestimate the power of fate.
We walked into the room to find my husband under 24hr guard by none other than an Italian grandmother from South Philly. There isn’t a pill on the planet that can compare to the healing powers of this woman.
The room was stark, nothing but a bed. My husband was stripped of anything that could possibly hurt him, and yet this woman made that room feel like home. I was waiting for her to pull a portable oven out of her purse.
Lena was just what this doctor ordered…. a mothers’ love. Never underestimate the power of an Italian woman who gets joy from taking care of a man.
During this visit is when we learned that my husband had ZERO memory of the past 12 hours. If only the rest of us had that pleasure.
The following day my son came with me. This time the guard on duty was Lorraine, a very feisty black woman. She was definitely sent for me.
This day was very heavy as we sat patiently waiting for information on the next hospital setting. The silence was deafening. Except for Lorraine’s gum cracking which was no doubt echoing throughout the halls.
My son was saved by a friend who called insisting on taking him out to lunch. Perfect timing!
As we sat in awkward silence listening to that poor piece of gum being assaulted in Lorraine’s mouth, we heard the words “who are you all voting for?” Of all the questions on the planet to ask, this was the one she chose to ask the man on suicide watch.
This is when the unexpected public service announcement was made. Lorraine would be voting for Trump. Why do you ask? Well, because she was tired of her neighbors collecting free money for their 5 children that she named Uno, Dos, Tres, Cuatro & Cinco. Fast forward to 11/9 … yep, this is one reason why.
On that Sunday I went to see my husband at the next facility. No one could have prepared me for this step of the journey. I’m not sure who decided that people with depression should be dehumanized to feel better, but they need to be fired.
I left this visit defeated, broken and wondering where is that place Dr. Drew sends his patients and do they take Blue Cross? The lack of life in this place could make even the happiest of people second guessing the existence of rainbows. WTF!
When I returned home I was flat. There was just nothing left to feel. I was done. With a weak smile for the sake of the kids of course.
As my son was about to head back to school, he decided to raid my change jar to feed the parking meter in town. He took out a huge pile of coins searching for quarters.
Next thing I hear is “mom, didn’t you loose a ring?” I had lost my wedding band on Thanksgiving 2015.
I have torn this house apart more than once searching for it. Trust me when I tell you I put the FBI to shame with my search efforts.
Sure enough, there was my ring, on the floor, with a dime stuck in the center. My eyes could just about register what they were seeing. The dam broke, and 4 days of emotion exploded into the room.
If ever there was going to be a sign that everything was going to be ok, this friends, was it.
Still dodging potholes while Enjoying the Ride!
If this gem doesn’t just scream my name I don’t know what does. That’s right folks, I’m officially hanging with the pigeon squad.
I am EXHAUSTED!
Not by the hamster wheel of life, but by the behavior of my co-humans.
By the increased hatred and decrease in common decency.
By the lack of truth and over indulgence of misinformation and lies.
I am EXHAUSTED!
By the loss of common ground and the divided beliefs.
By the daily negativity of he said she said while important issues sit silently.
By the rise in civil obedience and the lack of active participation in the process.
I am EXHAUSTED!
By being told who to hate by our televisions, while books collect dust.
By judgments, labels & stereotypes in one hand and bibles, flags & hypocrisy in the other.
By the absence of faith, hope & charity and the escalation of greed.
I am EXHAUSTED!
By the Social Media scholars and their ignorant followers.
By the callous treatment of the less fortunate and the misguided definition of fame.
By fear dictating our decisions, while common sense faces extinction.
I am EXHAUSTED!
By the abuse of our first amendment and the over extended defense of the our second.
By selfishness leading the way, while collaboration sits on the sidelines.
By the misconception that strength is loud and quietness is weak.
I am EXHAUSTED!
By the thought of war being the answer and not giving peace a chance.
By the short memories and selective truths.
By the thought that I’m too optimistic, while others have surrendered hope.
Let’s TRY to celebrate our Independence and our Interdependence today by being free from our hatred, fears and differences. These are the freedoms that lay out a strong foundation for our future. These are the freedoms that unite. These are the freedoms that will thrive.
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the Common Defense, promote the General Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to Ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
Now, I’m not going to lie, I will have to remember all of this when my beer induced, wanna be pyrotechnic neighbor starts setting off fireworks from his weather-beaten, one spark short of an inferno deck this evening. I NEVER SAID IT WAS GOING TO BE EASY…anything worthwhile rarely is easy.
We’re all in this together, so hop in and Enjoy the Ride!
I recently wrote about three of patients, that in spite of their age, are living vital active lives and they aren’t afraid to share their wisdom amongst the masses on the importance of doing just that. When Harry, Norman & Robert Met Lisa
The jury is still out on what has been happening since that essay. Is it coincidence, a conspiracy, my vivid imagination? Or all of the above.
While food shopping, a clerk who has never uttered a single word to me before, suddenly starts discussing the downside of growing older …. with ME …. as if we were one. My cart was not filled with adult diapers so back it up lady.
Just when I thought I was safe, my neighbor approaches to strike up a conversation about bones. Pointing out how “our” bones aren’t the same when “we” get older. My bones are cool thank you very much.
It’s now obvious to me that once the post office realizes you’ve turned the big 50, your regular mailman is replaced with the Grim Reaper. When death starts to moonlight … I can’t.
The amount of geriatric mail that enters my mailbox is ridiculous. Yesterday I received a pamphlet from the Sunny Hill Crematory. Seriously now! I’ll assume the Victoria Secret catalogs are now being placed in those younger, more attractive mailboxes down the street.
AARP has literally hijacked my mailbox with their paraphernalia. The amount of literature is equal to political ads. I’m only 2 years in bitch, save your stamps!
Back in the day the Grim Reaper kept his distance, giving nature a chance to take its course. Sooooo …. WTF happened? Why the constant notification? What’s the rush to the grave?
To put this in perspective, at my current age, my parents were working, functioning adults with active lives. My dad was 57 when I was born for god sakes, so I wasn’t even thought of when he was 52. Let that fester for a minute AARP!
It’s as if society is pushing us closer to the cliffs edge to make room for the newer improved models. We’re not cell phones, so calm your jets!
No one is spared really. I see this rush is across the board. While adults are being pushed into the grave at 50, the poor 10 year olds are being thrown into adulthood. I was basically in a playpen at 10 compared to kids today.
I know, I know, I must sound very geriatric right now comparing generations, but it’s more than a “back when I was a kid” comparison. I’m not that girl … I’m really not.
It’s just that when it comes to aging, society has become an aggressive seagull and I’m starting to feel like a lone Cheeto waiting to be swiped up by its talons. Back it up!
Don’t get me wrong, my inner geriatric has raised its snow-capped head for brief appearances, but I’m still young enough to shove it right back in the closet. Hey, those skeletons need some company.
I’m not trying to be a teenager here folks, I’m just trying to age gracefully while I continue to … Enjoy the Ride!
Three wise men walked into a Podiatrist office. No, this is not the beginning of a joke about aging feet, it’s the story of one of the best days I’ve had at work in a long time.
Let me introduce you to Harry, Norman & Robert. Three interesting, intelligent and inspiring men who walked into the office, dropped some wisdom and went about their day.
Harry -83 years young: Harry is a recent surgery patient with a wonderful sense of humor.
When he came in for his first post-op appointment he said, and I quote: “I want to thank Lisa for answering all of my questions, she is a fountain of knowledge.” I asked him to call my children to inform them of that fact, he thought I was kidding … I was not.
Believe it or not, the accurate conclusion that Harry made about me was not what captured my heart. But, it certainly didn’t hurt.
Harry told me that he volunteers in a first-grade classroom, and has been doing it for years. He was so happy that the teacher had the class send him Get Well wishes after his surgery, but there was a catch, they had to include a joke. Laughter is the best medicine.
This gesture filled Harry’s heart. He told me that he enjoys volunteering in the First Grade classroom because it gives him the joy to see these children enter the door not certain what to expect and leave with confidence.
He went on to explain that he has a special bond with this teacher. Harry lost his son years ago in November, just when this teacher was getting married. One young life ending as one began.
Shortly after the teacher was married she found out she was expecting and 3 months into the pregnancy her new husband died suddenly. Grief, let me introduce you to grief.
Their losses brought them together and they are wonderful friends who helped each other heal. He’s been volunteering ever since.
83 years old, still thinking, still living and still making a mark in this world.
Norman-86 years young: He came to us a few months ago via his family doctor, which is never good, and let’s just say that “the little piggy that went to the market” never came back.
When he called the other day he was very nervous that “the little piggy that stayed home” was on its way out too so we made room on the schedule. Podiatry office humor.
Norman came in as if he was the guest of honor at a celebration, not someone with a potential gangrenous toe.
He was wearing a Villanova cap to “make the doctor happy” since his daughter is a student and it was the day of the championship game. Well played Norman, well-played indeed.
Norman was excited to reveal he had recently written a paper on aging. When I took him to the exam room I had to inquire about the paper. I was very curious.
I was thinking he wrote it for the AARP magazine. Nope, he said, “I wrote it for my family, I want them to know how quickly it comes up on you.” A warning of sorts.
The title of the paper is “Getting Old Is Not For Sissies.” Norman told me he stole that line from Bette Davis, an actress I wouldn’t know because, and I quote “you’re too young to remember her.” He had me at “too young.”
Norman still can’t believe he is 86. He doesn’t recognize the person in the mirror. Still has a lot to share with this world. Has an incredible sense of humor, and wants nothing more than for his family to be happy.
Norman is going to drop off a copy of the paper for me to read. No worries, I will share.
Robert-91 years young: Robert came in for a routine appointment. As soon as he came to the window he showed my co-worker a photo of him and his wife from 1941. They looked like movie stars.
Robert is a tall man, but frail. No doubt more so since he lost the love of his life. He told my co-worker a story that left them both with watery eyes.
Later I asked her about it and of course, I too was left with watery eyes. We’re so sappy sometimes.
Robert explained that he and his wife were sitting at the kitchen table and she asked: “How long have we been married?” Robert responded with “65 years dear.” Her response was “I have not regretted one day in 65 years.” Robert explained that even though she is gone, he is still stunned by her words. He is a walking, talking broken heart.
I was also taken back by my co-worker’s response to Robert which was “It was nice to be able to hear that Robert.” Indeed, it was.
I must say, it was a pleasure to pick-up these three men while I … Enjoy the Ride!
There has been a lot of activity going on here at the homestead. 23 years and not one has passed without some sort of project, so why should this year be any different. Because maybe I need a break.
I had no idea about this project until I saw the sketches. Notice that is plural.
One minute I’m attending an open house, and the next there are steel beams being erected in my yard. Confused? Me too.
Sooooooo, after a very long process the ground was broken, just in time for the holidays. Thank you Mother Nature.
What woman doesn’t want to clean-up never ending dirt during the holidays? The answer is … NONE OF THEM!
My friends, neighbors and anyone who sees our house, constantly remind me how “lucky” I am to have such a “handy guy.” Handy is fixing a pipe, I have someone who sees a mantle inside of a tree stump.
It’s not that I’m ungrateful or that I won’t be over the moon with the results, it’s the lonely road in between that does me in. I’m a Home Improvement Widow!
During these periods of “tinkering”, we can sit in the same room and one of us (not me) has no recollection of that period of time.Why? Because the wheels are spinning at a rate that I cannot even recognize. I’m surprised he doesn’t explode.
My life from now until the last stroke of the paintbrush will be solo. My other half is officially consumed into his project. His creative juices are percolating and his magic is about to be unleashed. Meanwhile over here ….
Legos for adults should really be a thing.
As if this enormous project wasn’t enough to occupy every waking moment, we had a recent mishap in our bathroom. 4 loose tiles to be exact. Remember that line.
The solution to this was put the masterpiece outback on hold, take a week of vacation time to “fix” the bathroom and you’ll be taking a shower in a week he said….
We only have one bathroom with a shower. The other bathroom has a beautiful spa tub. You know that saying “too much of a good thing won’t be good” it’s like that.
On the Saturday before the big fix I asked, and I quote: “Are you going to paint?” the response, which will be used by me every chance I get from now, until well … forever was “Yes, I’m going to paint.”
By the time I returned home Monday there was, let’s just say much more progress than I expected. Shock and awe were more like it.
There were FOUR loose tiles people.
Yes, he said he was going to “rearrange” the toilet and the sink.
No, he did NOT say anything about demolition … AT ALL! He said he was going to paint!!!
Needless to say, the week came and went. Progress is being made, but I’m still not showering or murdering.
The tile is down. The molding is up. The shower is on BACK ORDER. The toilet, sink and walls have not been spotted, but my patience is still intact. Hanging by a thread…but still on.
My favorite part about all of this is using my new Super Power. That’s right folks, the line “you said you were going to paint” is my new go to for everything ever wanted by yours truly.
Me: I think I’m going to order new cushions for the patio.
Hubby: Do we really need them?
Me: You said you were going to paint. They arrive Tuesday.
I just love the Yin/Yang of life!
Enjoy the Ride!
At this point in my life, why do I continue to let my Inner Critic rise to the occasion to spew its negativity? Really, it needs to just shut up!
The other day I was stretching at the gym when I noticed this young woman staring at me. For the record, the inner critic loves to come to the gym.
Now, I could have thought that she was admiring my flexibility, but nooooo not when I have the asshole in tow.
Immediately I assumed she was looking at my faults. We all know spandex does not lie. When you wear it at 52, after years of abusing yourself with food and bearing children …. it screams the truth.
We made eye contact, exchanged awkward smiles and moved along. The smile was received as sympathy for my flaws. Without one piece of evidence.
Later in the workout I noticed her looking in my direction …. again! I should have been thinking that perhaps she was looking for a date, but no not with the good ole critic by my side. It was all about body shaming from that one.
I allowed these negative thoughts to grow throughout the workout. I was ridiculously self-conscience the entire time. As if the struggle isn’t hard enough, I had to dodge some extra punches.
After the hour was over and the stretching complete, the young woman sheepishly approaches me. Mind you she was built like an instructor, not a client, so I assumed she was nervous about how she was going to be brutally honest with me. If only negative thoughts burned calories … I would be transparent.
There I stood waiting for the punch. Feeling horrible about everything spandex, everything about the workout and everything about myself. Defeat at its highest power.
This is what went down:
Young Woman: Oh hi I was just wondering where you get your hair cut. I saw you last week and loved your cut and I’m looking for a change.
Me: What did you say? I blamed my shock o the music.
Young Woman: I was just asking where you get your hair cut I love it!
Me: Gave her all the details and made her very happy.
By the time I got to the car I was furious with myself. I could not believe I put my accomplishments in the back seat while this miserable ass drove me to the point of such defeat. My inner critic has a name, and I think it might be Donald, after another ass I know who continuously spews negative energy.
Think about it….
No more trips to the past for me. Been there, done that.
No more beating myself up over my looks.
No more insecurities.
It’s all about moving forward to crush my goals like the badass rockstar from Mars that I know I am! Yes, that is the sound of someone wearing their positive pants.
I’m off to let my fabulous hair blow in the wind while I ….. Enjoy the Ride!
Quote: thejealouscurator.com; Photo: Huffington Post
I recently had the pleasure of being Summoned for Federal Jury. Yes, pleasure.
I’m not going to lie, going in I was torn between wanting to be sequestered and not wanting to go at all.
Since I do not know another soul in my inner circle that has been called for such a special duty, off I went. Not sure how I hit this lottery, but I’m glad I did.
As you know, Federal Courthouses have very intense security systems in place. I thought this was due to things like terrorism, however, now I’m not so sure. It’s all about the power of the wand.
On day one I put my belongings into the designated bucket, walked through the metal detector, and heard the Marshall say, “Whoa I was expecting sparks when you came through!” Of course, I thought he was referring to my dazzling personality …. he was not.
You’re required to serve for two days, so on day two I wore less dazzle.
This time, I was given the once over with the wand, instructed to sit in a chair, and had my boots felt up so thoroughly I felt dirty, weirdly satisfied and craving a cigarette. No dinner. No number.
Federal jury duty is indeed the country club of Civic Duty. There was a spread of food, drinks, carpeting on the floor, comfortable chairs, and cozy sitting areas. White collar crime is where it’s at!!
First up was the premier of a 5 Star video on the importance of our service. It was narrated by a local news anchor, along with words of wisdom from some senior judges. Oscar worthy … really.
Next, Carol the court clerk explained all the details of being paid for our time. We would be reimbursed for everything under the sun and then some in addition to our guaranteed $45.00 per day. Cha-ching!
I did not get selected on day one which meant I sat, waited and was bored out of my mind. I should have brought a bigger book!
What’s a bored girl to do? Walk the halls of course.
This is where I came across the FBI’s list of the 10 Most Wanted criminals in the country. FYI: The longer you look at these photos the more you will think “I know him!”
As I was standing there trying to determine if #6 was actually the guy who lives down the street, I heard “Hey are you looking to wrangle some of them in?”
Me: “That depends on what you mean by wrangle.”
We both laughed and I spent way too long wondering if this guy always used words like “wrangled.”
A small group gathered in one of the sitting areas. We introduced ourselves and became fast friends. It was like a cocktail party without the cocktails on the government’s dime.
Our group was a very mixed crew coming as far as 2 hours away to Philadelphia locals like myself. My absolute favorite juror was a woman from a wealthy Philadelphia suburb named Nina. Interesting and unintentionally hilarious were her traits.
It was about 12:45 or so when she realized we hadn’t had lunch. This is when she revealed she informed Carol the court clerk earlier that she is accustomed to eating lunch at 11:30. I burst into laughter assuming she was kidding … she was not.
After my awkward “oh I thought you were kidding apology ” I gracefully informed her that Carol is wearing a cow neck and a hair mane from the 80’s … she doesn’t care when you eat. Nina was not having it.
We all watched as Nina marched right over to remind Carol that it was long past her lunch time. This is when belief met disbelief…I’m still laughing.
The only one in our group to be chosen to serve was Tom a/k/a #79. He was a “survivalist” from a small town in upstate Pennsylvania. Think Rambo.
He wore head to toe camouflage gear both days, was able to profess love for his grand babies and describe how to break a neck without missing a beat. Intrigued is an understatement.
As for the rest of us a/k/a #’s 31, 43, 77, & 92, well, we went to a much needed lunch, exchanged emails and hugged our goodbyes.
Good energy is contagious … Enjoy the Ride!