Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year's Eve

I’m dog sitting for Blake and Evan.

It’s 10:30, and I’m in bed—their bed—with their puppy, Rhee. I could make all sorts of snide remarks about spending New Year's snuggled up with an aging, slightly overweight, bald in patches, nearly toothless Dachshund in a bed that belongs to a couple of gay guys. But, to be honest, I’m lizard on a heat rock happy right now.

As I was walking Rhee tonight, I got a few curious looks from some girls who were running out to catch a cab. They were in short, tight dresses, 3 inch eye makeup, and 4 inch heels. I was in flannel pants, a hoodie, old clogs, and one of the boys’ baseball caps. We sized each other up. They sighed in pity. I laughed a little under my breath. You couldn’t pay either of us to trade shoes.

Been there, done that. Sometimes, I even love that. But, not tonight.

Tonight, it’s quiet. The sheets are warm. The dog is cuddly.
And this is happy new year.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Happy Birthday, Jesus

Mrs. Claus stopped by my parents’ house on Christmas Eve…

And, like every other girl who’s ever gone to a party dressed as Santa’s helper, she promptly took off all her clothes…

My sister-in-law, Trish, yelled, “No, Lucy, you can’t do that here. She loves to run around naked, but if you don’t watch her, she’ll pee on the floor.”

Then, we all watched her pee on the floor.

Trish immediately commenced to apologizing profusely. My dad cut her off mid-sentence, “Honey, if I had a nickel for every time a naked baby peed on this floor…”

“But this is your new carpet,” she said.

“This carpet was specially chosen to hide all manner of naked baby stains. Don't worry about it.”

My brother, hunched over the puddle on his hands and knees, Febreze in hand, was decidedly less apologetic about the whole thing. In the middle of his scrubbing, he looked up at me and muttered, “You know what I say...better his carpet than mine.”

“This is nothing,” my sister said. “Last week Logyn was standing naked over the nativity set and she peed all over the baby Jesus.”

“Wait a minute,” I said, “That nativity set? The one on top of the cedar chest?” The small glass figurines sit on top of a three foot high antique cabinet in front of my parents’ living room window.

“Yes, that nativity set. It’s the only one we have.”

“How the hell did she get up there?" I asked. "Did she climb the tree?”

“No," said my sister, rolling her eyes as if a naked baby perched atop the furniture was perfectly normal, but a naked baby climbing the Christmas tree was somehow beyond absurd. "I put her up there.”

“You took off all her clothes and then put her in the front window?”

"She had a diaper rash, so I was letting her run around naked to air out a bit. She likes to wave goodbye to Mom when she leaves for work. So, when Mom left, I stood her on the cedar chest to wave. Then she peed. Right there. All over the baby Jesus.”

“You know,” I said, “this kind of thing might go a long way towards explaining why the neighbors didn’t send a card this year.”

Sunday, December 13, 2009


I was supposed to make dinner for Blake and Evan on Friday. At the last minute, I canceled. On my way home from work, I suddenly realized how exhausted I was from days and days of case management bullshit and no real medicine. I was completely drained. I spent the drive home thinking, Pull yourself together, T. Pick up a bottle of wine, change out of these scrubs, and start cooking. It's just a meal. Certainly, you can get through a meal.

I drove to the store, parked out front, and then and there, I lost my tenuous grip on together. I wasn't really crying so much as I was leaking from my tear ducts. I sat in that parking spot, and as the mascara dripped down my face, sent Blake a text message. I lied a little, telling him I had just gotten out of work. I didn't feel like explaining that I had actually gotten out twenty minutes earlier and had spent the time since unsuccessfully trying to pull myself together.

I apologized about dinner. He said not to worry about it, that he'd call me later.

He called me later. I didn't pick up. I was afraid that the moment I heard his voice I'd lose it again. Do you know that feeling? That feeling of being held together by such a threadbare strand that any kind word, any tenderness, any hint that this may be a safe place to fall will completely unravel you?

It was that feeling.

I took that feeling to bed. And, although I didn't exactly awake to a new day restored, refreshed, and ready to take on the world, I did feel a hell of a lot better after 15 hours of sleep.

Last night, there was bread dipped in cheese, fried meat, and chocolate--a much happier subject for a forthcoming much better post. Today, there was work. It was still a fair bit of case management bullshit--entirely too much time spent arranging home oxygen for a person who's probably never going to wear it (except maybe while she's smoking). But, there was also a bit of real medicine (nothing like a little respiratory distress to make a girl feel needed).

All's well that ends well, I suppose.

On that note, I'm headed back to bed. The threadbare strand seems to be heavily reinforced by hours of sleep. And well, as they say...physician, heal thyself.