My stepson is transgender. When Ian was born, he got stuck in the wrong body. Since I pretty much ignored science after fifth grade I’m not sure if this kinda thing is the fault of the stork, the universe, or some argument between a sundry of sperm and the single egg.
Our CPA is in prison and yesterday his firm accidentally shredded our taxes. There was a “miscommunication” and our returns sat on a computer, never got filed, and “sorry for the inconvenience” and can we come back down and “re-sign”?
Sure Doug and I have a spare moment to just traipse down for the fourth time in two weeks. We don’t have a choice our taxes due in five days.
“Cancer feels like the flu.”
“What did you say back?” I asked my husband, the person who actually has cancer.
Doug has Stage IV throat cancer the kind of cancer men get from oral sex. Ok, well, not always from oral sex. It’s an environmental cancer, you can also get it from smoking or having too many slumber parties in a coal mine.
I was held at gunpoint when I was seven years old. It happened at our family owned furniture store.
Spoiler alert: I lived. Which now that you know the ending, kinda makes it not worth reading.
But there’s this phenomenon when people hear you have experienced something that involves fear, terror, or panic they want to know all about it sucking on your every word. Why? Because people are bored and your story is an espresso shot to their ordinary bland day.
‘I smell the devil. He’s been right here!’ My mom snapped her fingers just like Beulah did to validate that the devil’s presence had been wafting through our house.
Beulah played the piano at our church. She wasn’t an exceptional piano player, but she was exceptional at being dramatic. I was eavesdropping on my mom as she was telling my dad all about Beulah’s visit to our home earlier that day.
“…..and after she said, ‘I smell the devil,’ she sniffed like this.….” and then my mom sniffled real loud to give my dad the full essence of Beulah’s revelation. Beulah was the self appointed spiritual goddess of our church.
I was ten years old and I didn’t like Beulah too much. She yelled “amen” during the sermons like it was a competition and she barged in on everyone’s business.
There are times you don’t need pajamas. Now before you think this is about an amorous bedroom moment, it’s not. It’s about Christmas.
In early December I got a phone call from my grandma. “What do you want for Christmas sweetie?”
“An exploding volcano kit!” I yelled into the phone, “You make a volcano with lava that comes out!”
Never bake cookies are not to be confused with the familiar no bake cookies. Never bake cookies are literally cookies you should never bake. Ever.
Most likely you have been a victim of the sly baker who adds twisted ingredients like flax seeds, chia seeds, or oat bran to cookie dough in an attempt to save your life. These are the cookies I’m talking about. We don’t want our lives saved through a cookie. All you do is make us angry.
I know. I was a child of anger. Angry at the cookies my mom would bake. Maybe I would have been ok with seedy grain cookies if I’d grown up with them. But my life started out with wonderful cookies until I the day I was in fourth grade when my mom went down the wrong section of the library.
This dreadful aisle was the food conspiracy section. Shelves were filled with books about how our food was killing us and the grocery stores were at fault along with the entire food industry. She devoured these books. And once my mom got her head filled with this new information she gave our pantry an enema.
We called the police on our babysitter. Not because she was mean (because she was) and not because she made us cut coupons (because she did). We called the police on our babysitter because we thought she was a murderer.
I was in fifth grade, my sister in fourth, and our brother in a baby grade.
A dead body was found in the creek one mile upstream from our house. We were used to dead bodies. And we have our school to thank for that.
It started in second grade when the principal barged into our lunchroom with an announcement, “I’m sure you’ve seen on the news there is a serial killer on the loose…”
The lunchroom went silent.
“Don’t you think what you did was awful?” I asked my eighty year old mom.
She chuckled and shrugged her shoulders. ‘Meh. In her mind it was a blase childhood moment like taking your kid to the park every Tuesday.
I look at her. She pauses. And then she contemplates for a split second and figures she might as well throw in, “Well, your brother talks about it too. Like it was something.”
“It was mom. It was horrifying. The most embarrassing moment of my life!”
Our homeless babysitter wasn’t a normal kind of homeless person. And she wasn’t the kind of homeless person you see in a B grade movie who lives under a bridge in a box that happens to stay clean year round. She was a different kind of homeless.
My mom’s a social worker. Not the paid kind. But the heart kind. These kind of social workers create their own case files.