Rules for a sisters-only getaway

1. Stay up late ranking the names of Kim Kardashian’s children, from least awful to most awful. (In case you are curious: North (but go by Nori, obv), Saint, and poor lil’ Chicago is last.)

2. Sleep in late and eat kettle corn and coffee for breakfast. (Doubles as a colon cleanse?! Lol)

3. Chuckle to yourself every time your spouse calls to say how much he appreciates you.

4. Buy four kinds of chocolate candy and share amongst yourselves.

5. Wear your new silk pajama pants you got on clearance from Target.com and slide around the bed laughing so hard you nearly pee yourself while your sister jokes about your Bangkok-inspired sleepwear choices. (They were a steal at TEN DOLLARS and worth every silky penny!)

This is definitely the first annual sister-getaway of many many more to come. So gimme the scoop ladies—any fun sister getaway traditions you can share?

. . .Oh, and we MIGHT go parasailing. We’ll see.

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The man-cold experiment

In not-at-all-surprising news, I got sick with a bad cold. (My last post was literally about how I need to practice more self-care.) Sigh.

I’m working on more rest, less doing in my daily life, so I figured practicing this while sick would be a good place to start. In fact, what better way to demand rest than to treat my cold like it’s a man-cold. 

Man-cold instructions:

  1. Lie down in the bed under the covers and don’t move all night. 
  2. Demand others tend to dinner. Preferably making your favorite comfort food.
  3. Declare yourself off-limits for childcare duty.

It’s that simple and here’s the crazy thing: it basically worked! Childcare tasks were the hardest to shake because the child finds me wildly entertaining and demands me as her playmate. (#onlychildproblems.) I fixed that by suggesting she and daddy play “science” which they both love because they make volcanoes explode and get messy, so win-win.

At bedtime my husband did get a tad snippy: “you WILL be helping with bedtime routine right?!” I said yes, assuming that’s how it goes the next time he gets sick. 

Who knew it was that easy? Ask and ye shall receive! 

17 easy steps to sleeping in as a parent!

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  1. Wake up to child staring you in the face.
  2. Curse as you realize your spouse is fleeing to the spare bedroom.
  3. Cajole child into chasing down other parent.
  4. Hide under covers.
  5. Yell across house to “remind” spouse he has dodged early wake-up approximately 1,572 times this week.
  6. Cheer for joy as spouse gets up with child.
  7. Run to spare bedroom.
  8. Wake up to see child staring at you while holding a toilet bowl brush.
  9. Reassure your child that yes, they can clean the toilet this morning as promised last night. (WEIRDO CHILD.)
  10. Yell across house to tell spouse to help child clean toilet.
  11. Wait for it. . . spouse can’t find the toilet bowl cleaner. Yell the location of the cleaner.
  12. Discover a dog has joined you in the bed. Realize soon it will be a child.
  13. Get up and lock door.
  14. Wait for it. . .child wails upon discovering door is locked.
  15. Wait two additional minutes for child to return to tell you “Daddy is making you coffee!” A SNEAKY PLOY TO GET YOU UP.
  16. Lie in bed wide awake smelling coffee.
  17. Admit defeat. 

 

Happy Saturday morning! At least I have a clean toilet AND coffee! 

Did I miss any steps? Share your own. Solidarity sisters.

It was a SARAH kind of day

Where to begin! I have so many stories to tell and I haven’t posted in a few days, so there is a log jam. Must get words on paper!

First, I want to share that it is October 1st, and I have been called to write about BREAST CANCER PREVENTION. I am going to brew up some creative projects related to this topic, so STAY TUNED!

Secondly, I am possibly in the works to collaborate on a project for a pregnancy loss awareness event. Because guess what folks….October is also pregnancy loss and infant loss awareness month! So much to be aware of, am I right? Ha! Just poking fun at myself. I think awareness is a good thing, but I think speaking our truth is even more important because it is what ultimately connects us to others. I hope to speak my truth on this as well and more to come on what I have up my sleeve.

Thirdly, I had a really funny day yesterday. Epic.

It was a SARAH DAY.

What is a Sarah day? Well, I am Sarah. And there are things that only I am capable of. I have a knack for finding myself in absurd situations and it might have to do with the fact that I am known for being a bit, what is the word….flaky? Head in the clouds?  I have learned to laugh about this part of my personality. I AM OWNING UP TO IT.

 

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Let me set the scene.

Act 1. Sarah registers with Southwest Airlines with her full name – maiden and married name both. Her Rodham Clinton name, if you will. Sarah racks up points with her favorite airline.

Act 2. Sarah moves to Florida and goes to get a new driver’s license. They say, oh we cannot take your OLD license with your Rodham Clinton name nonsense as proof that you are who you say you are! Show us your social security card with your FULL NAME. Sarah says, well you see I technically never changed my name with the federal government (as if) and they say, well tough cookies. You are going to be listed as your MAIDEN NAME because bureaucracy.

Act 3. Sarah books flight with Southwest. They force her to use her Rodham Clinton name. Which now no longer matches her license. Sarah is pulled aside by TSA and interregated. Where are you going? Why would you CHOOSE to fly to Ohio? You have been married nine years and never changed your name? FULL PAT DOWN LADY. FULL. PAT. DOWN.

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Act 4. Nine years after marriage, Sarah supposes it is time to officially change her name with Social Security to her Rodham Clinton last name. The social security admin office is oddly efficient. The customer service guy teaches her daughter how to give the “OK” sign underwater while scuba-diving. This is her new favorite thing. He laughs at the stained marriage certificate with its envelope falling apart. Nine years huh? You laugh. Everybody laughs. THE CARD IS CHANGED. VICTORY IS SARAH’S.

Act 4. Sarah goes to DMV. Final step within reach…a card that matches her valued Southwest Airlines account. Because for real that is what created this cascade of events that should have been prevented nine years ago. I digress. Sarah has her picture taken but is sad she didn’t do her eyebrows because you see she was on her way to get them waxed and tinted after the DMV appointment. Man her photo looks bad without her eyebrows done. She considers how people are barely staying alive in Syria and she is worrying about her eyebrows.

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Act 5. Almost there. SO. CLOSE. Sarah gets out her wallet to pay. The woman is scanning the documents into the computer–and stops. Where is the seal on your marriage certificate. What seal? Further inspection shows that Sarah has been using (successfully, mind you! With DMV offices in other states! With the Social Goddamn Security Administration) the certificate from the DAY of her marriage, the one that lasts 24 hours, the one the officiant signed, and was supposedly filed by said officiant with the appropriate agency.

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The woman at the DMV says she has never seen this in her entire life of working at the DMV. You say, what, there are not other Sarahs in the world??

She says no honey, get your shit together.

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Sarah says I AM TRYING!! I AM REALLY TRYING.

Sarah leaves empty handed. She calls her husband and tells him, oh by the way maybe we are not officially married? HAHAHAHAHA. He laughs. She laughs. First ten years just a test run! We will “renew our vows” but actually really get married this time! HAHAHAHAHAHA.

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Act 6. Sarah pays exorbitant amount of money to have final marriage certificate sent via certified fast mail. Sarah is unable to speak to a human to verify that it ACTUALLY EXISTS.

Act 7. Sarah’s sister leaves her a message and deadpans, Sarah, this wouldn’t happen to anybody but you. Really. 

 

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LISTEN YOU ALL. THE INTERWEBS TELL ME THIS:

After your wedding, it is the responsibility of the person who performed your wedding ceremony to make sure the license is recorded with the county where you were married. Generally, a few weeks after your wedding, you will receive your marriage certificate in the mail. (EDITOR’S NOTE: I NEVER DID I SWEAR! OR I LOST IT. THAT IS POSSIBLE TOO.) That said, even if the officiant fails to file the marriage certificate, the two are usually still considered married.

Still legit y’all. Not living in sin! Not the parents of a child born out of wedlock!

CARRY ON. NOTHING TO SEE HERE.JUST ANOTHER SARAH DAY.

(P.S. My husband just chimed in, “I’d still marry you again!” Me too, hon. Me too.)

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I would ask if you could relate but I am pretty sure no, you can’t. Nope. Nobody can relate to this nonsense. Y’all got your names changed and put your paperwork in a safe like a month after you got married. I know you did. That is ok. We can still be friends.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Facing Anger (And Reluctantly Admitting My Husband Was Right)

Every window in my house is currently steamed up. (No, it’s not what you think! Jeesh, don’t make me blush.) The reason? I live in Florida. It is summer. The humidity is higher than Donald Trump’s bangs.

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high hair, high humidity. (photo source)

I just returned home to this heat from 

vacation in the cool, humidity-free Northeast. No matter. I am loving the all-consuming stickiness.

At last: the outside world is matching my inside world.

As vacation ended and some unpleasant realities of life creeped back into my consciousness, anger began seeping out in all the ways that Oprah would advise against. Projecting onto my husband. Snapping at my daughter. Scowling about towels left on the floor and muttering loudly under my breath.  A tiny voice within squeaked, hmm you seem pretty CHARGED UP about this…perhaps something else? To which my ego (angrily) replied, NO! Really, I  AM this angry over my husband whining about needing a nap after he slept ten hours last night! (Yes this really happened. Normally I would I would chuckle and lovingly mock him and tell him to shut his pie hole. I would not be full of PRIMAL RAGE.)

I was full of PRIMAL RAGE.

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Who knew? A google search for “primal rage”returns this fantastic image from an early ’90s video game.

I’ll spare you the details of the who and what that led to my anger. It isn’t necessary. What I will share is how surprised I have been at the depth and fierceness of the anger—and my unwillingness to simply name it for what it was.

Why, I wondered later, is it so hard for me to just say, “I AM ANGRY AT X AND I NEED TO JUST SAY IT OUT LOUD!”

Many wise souls have pointed out how resisting what is is the source of our suffering. Certainly it was the source of the suffering between my husband and myself, as he threw his hands up and said, “Whoa, why are you so upset with ME? I know this isn’t about me, this is about x! Stop projecting!”

He even predicted that ten minutes later I would be back, apologizing, and admitting he was right.

Damn it, I hate when he is right.

I think it all has to do with anger being a secondary emotion.

I read the term “secondary emotion” for the first time a year or two ago. I had this major “AHA” moment. I had been lumping anger as an emotion with all the rest. Turns out, anger is special. It is just the first layer of a delicious cake of emotions. Perhaps it is the crispy charred caramel bit atop a Crème brûlée. You have to poke through it to get to the creamy, smooth center, the meat of the thing.

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If only anger tasted as delicious. Image source.

Which, in my case, turned out to be sadness. So. Much. Sadness. Once I finally admitted to my husband that he was right (sigh), that I was not actually angry at him, I crept into a spare bedroom and wrote a little. The tears started flowing and they wouldn’t stop. Streams and streams of tears. I hadn’t cried like this in a very long time. I let it run its course but it took an awfully long time for my eyes to dry up.

No wonder I was hiding behind the anger. Who wants to unearth all that hurt and sadness?

I’d love to carry my metaphor forward about the dessert and crème brûlée, something trite about how sweet it is to finally break through all the flavors and eat the gooey custard middle. But that is not the case. There is nothing fun or delicious about resisting anger, feeling anger, and then crying for twenty minutes.

For me, the closest I can come to that happy ending is through my writing, which always helps me unpack what I’m feeling and find some self-compassion in the process. Not as tasty as a French dessert, but I’ll take it.