Sunny Days in DC

Jack of All Trades, Master of 3-ish.

In which I hide in the bathroom and pretend I’m in Epcot.

I’m sleepy. This is a sleepy post because I find it easier to talk about upsetting things when I don’t have enough sleep to censor myself. So, we’re there.

This past week… this was rough. I wouldn’t say I have “anxiety disorder,” or that it’s all that intense, but I have episodes that are worse than others. It’s why I haven’t posted too much over the past few days.

My new job is great, and I’m so happy to have it… but I’ve been burned in the past. You think things are going well, but there’s that little voice inside of you that just won’t let you relax. You can’t just be happy. You wake up each morning waiting for the other shoe to drop.

My manager is a micro-manager. That’s not to say he’s mean, or incompetent; he’s very good at his job. Too good, maybe, to let someone else fumble a bit and make mistakes. But it’s tough when everything you do is under a microscope. Have you ever tried doing something at work while someone is sitting there, looking over your shoulder? They’re watching you. They’re judging everything you do.

I didn’t put in a dotted line fast enough.

I didn’t switch out two names, even though I didn’t know I should… I guess I could have figured it out…

It’s been 11.5 months since my last job ended, and let’s just say, it didn’t end on a high note. I was 5 months pregnant… you draw your own conclusions. So I’m out of practice. I don’t have my game face on. Sorry about that; I left it at home on my nightstand next to the Desitin and the box of baby wipes.

And then, at some point, it just became too much. And in my head, I pictured being called into my manager’s office. In my head, they tell me that this isn’t working out. They’re letting me go. My blood pressure rises. I can’t be unemployed again. My family is depending on me. I have a baby. We have a mortgage.

Please…

Don’t do this…

I’ll work longer. I’ll be better…

Am I overly dramatic? Maybe. Probably. But not intentionally. I had to take a few minutes. I walked into the bathroom and closed the door.

Am I the only one who does this?

My friend texted me: “Take a deep breath. Again.”

Some people have “happy places” of verdant fields with… I don’t know, lambs or some shit. I went to the Maryland Wool and Sheep Festival a couple of times. Sheep smell like… well, like dirty, wet wool.

Which I guess is appropriate.

MY happy place is Epcot Center in Disney World. I went there last year when I was pregnant with Max. Unlike the other parks, Epcot is really more about science and discovery and learning and I am a giant fucking nerd because I loved it so much, and couldn’t understand why anyone would go to any other park.

HAVE YOU FUCKING SEEN THE HYDROPONICS EXHIBIT?! THEY ARE GROWING CUCUMBERS IN THE DESERT, PEOPLE!!!

So I sat in the bathroom, hyperventilating, picturing that time my husband and I rode the tour around the Disney science lab, and telling myself that everything would be ok.

When I got out, one of my coworkers pulled me aside. “You’re really good at this, you know?” he said. “You just need to stop thinking you’re failing. You’re not. You’re actually making people annoyed, because you’re downplaying how good you really are.” It was a smack to the face.

Work is hard.

Managers are hard.

Sometimes though, you’re hardest on yourself.

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That Time I was Attacked by a Phantom Hand That Was Actually MINE, But It Still Scared Me, So I Totally Ran Around My Living Room Screaming

This isn’t a long post, I don’t think. I haven’t written it yet, so it might be. I don’t know. It’s my blog, and you’re on it.

Anyway, I like to think I’m many things, but sometimes, smart is not one of them. Case in point: I can no longer watch movies in the dark. It’s not that it scares me, or that I could stand up and trip on my way to the bathroom (although, yes and yes). It’s because I’m incapable of watching tv in the dark like a normal fucking human being, without spazzing out.

One time, I think I was 22 or something (old enough to know better, young enough to still be stupid and pick up Swedish drummers in bars and try to make them talk to me like the Swedish Chef from The Muppets), my mom and I were watching a scary movie in our living room. She had turned out the lights because… I don’t know… do people still do that? She turned out the lights to make it more like a real movie, or maybe to be more scary, or maybe we just hadn’t paid the electric bill. I can’t be sure. Anyway, I was lounging on the couch for probably about thirty minutes. The movie had gotten to a really intense part, and both of us were riveted. I was watching the screen. Something was happening. Maybe our hero was facing off against the evil Snakefishhead (thank you, SciFy network, for such epic gems!), when I looked down. There, just underneath me, was a long, pale arm, sticking out from behind the pillows… Suddenly, it moved!

I SCREAMED! I jumped up, screamed, and ran around our living room, BECAUSE THAT FUCKING ARM WAS FOLLOWING ME AND I COULDN’T GET AWAY! GAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Happenings

*Why is there a fucking arm after me? AND WHAT THE FUCK IS IN THIS BOWL?*

My mom sat on the couch laughing hysterically, waiting for me to figure out that the arm that was following me (and sometimes coming right at my face!) was, in fact, my own. I had been laying on my arm in the dark, and so distracted by the movie that I hadn’t noticed when it had fallen asleep. When I looked down, the arm had moved, and I freaked and ran around like a chicken without a head (remind me to tell you the time I was chased around a yard by a chicken without a head. It traumatized me, and now I consider every trip to KFC as my own personal act of revenge. FUCK YOU, CHICKENS OF THE ENTIRE DAMN WORLD!!).

And that, in sum, is why I don’t trust either of my arms. Because I believe that given half a chance, they will turn on me again. One night. In the dark.

…it’s just a matter of time, people.

23 Comments »

Like 50,000 Volts, Straight To the Nipples

This is how my day went…

Morning

Me: “OMIGOSH!! HONEY!! A really popular blogger on WordPress mentioned me, and now a bunch of people LIKE ME!!!!”

Husband: “Yeah, that’s great… but the door is open, the neighbors are out front, and maybe you want to think about not being insane wearing a shirt when you walk around the house with your breast pump on.”

Pump: “Whirrr whirrr whirrr…”

Neighbors: “……………………………………..hi hannah………….”  o_o

 

Afternoon

Religious family friend: “What…. what is she doing?”

Husband: “She’s teaching Max how to ‘pimp slap.'”

Me: “KEEP THE PIMP HAND STRONG, LITTLE MAN!!!!”

Family friend: “She knows we’re in PUBLIC, right?”

Husband: “Well, she’s wearing pants, so…”

 

Two hours ago

Family friend: “It’s a game we thought you might like…”

Me: “My card says, ‘Pac Man, guzzling cum.’ This is the best game IN THE HISTORY OF FOREVER!!!!”

 

Thirty minutes ago

Me: “Holy shit! I should write this all down!”

WordPress: “Fuck you!” *crash*

Me: “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO……..sonofabeech.”

28 Comments »

If You Haven’t Considered Going Gay, You’re Not Doing Marriage Right

I love my husband. I love him so much, that I would consider losing a very valuable part of my body. Like, my right hand, or possibly a labia majora (mine are super pretty, so really, it would be a loss to the WORLD). But there are still days where I look at his face and think, “if there was some kind of a button that made me gay, I would be pressing it SUPER FUCKING HARD RIGHT NOW.”

My friend* and I have discussed this at length. It’s how we know that homosexuality is not a choice: because at LEAST 15 days out of the month, we text each other: “PRESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!” And yet, I still do not enjoy the idea of making sweet, sweet, lurve to another woman. Nothing wrong with it, but much like Rocky Road Ice Cream, it’s just not for me.

But you know what? Seriously, I think that if you don’t lie there in the dark, silently questioning whether an asexual hetero lifemate is for you, then you’re not doing marriage right. My husband drives me insane sometimes. He won’t let me even TRY to duct tape Max to the wall (WTF? WHY DO WE EVEN *HAVE* KIDS, IF NOT FOR THIS SORT OF DOWN-HOME ENTERTAINMENT?!). Whatever. It’s not like I would duct tape his SKIN. That’s cruel. I’d totally put it OVER his onesie, because I’m a caring mother.

And this one time, he coughed on my back IN BED without covering his mouth (dude, I know, it was totally gross).

So, if you’re married, not only should you be SURE that homosexuality isn’t a choice, but you should also encourage gay marriage… because fuck this noise, gays should have to deal with this bullshit too.

…maybe it would turn them straight?

OMFG. I JUST SOLVED THE “GAY PROBLEM” FOR FUNDAMENTALIST CHRISTIANS! Holy shit you guys. I’m on a roll tonight!

*A girl. Not gay. Also in a relationship with a man. Just setting the scene here, kids.

50 Comments »

Wanting to Be Liked

This is the double-edged sword of, well, anything really. You want people to like what you do. But in order for people to like it, they have to notice it. But you don’t want people to pay attention to you, because what if they don’t like what they see.

An incredibly generous blogger on here has made an astounding offer to me. In fact, he’s done several really nice things for me, and I find that, in wanting to give him work that he might like, I’ve developed a severe case of the “OMFG-WHAT-IF-I-SUCK”s. So I sit in the dark of my living room, with Iron Man 2 showing on tv (not good enough to be a distracting film, but not crappy enough to distract me by making me want to find something better), and I think “what can I write that’s funny?” 

“No, that’s not funny enough.”

“No, that sucks.”

“Jesus, Hannah. Why do you suck so hard?”

And then I throw everything away and sit on the floor and eat ice cream.

Legit, I have other things I should totally be doing. Other writing projects I want to get on with, but I use WordPress as an excuse. I roam the blogs here like a giraffe nibbling from this tree or that. A “Like” here, a “Comment” there. I should be working on this other project.

This is how “meta” I am: I’m sitting here, on WordPress, writing about how I shouldn’t be here on WordPress.

My problem is, I actually care what people think. Not about anything else, but about my writing. I’m not fishing for compliments, because people on here have been more than kind enough to provide them in HEAPS. I’m just saying, I feel like I would be better, if I just cared a little less.

So, if I sucks…. essentially you only have yourselves to blame.  😉

Ha! Just kidding. It’s totally my fault. Jewish guilt.

11 Comments »

This isn’t a post.

What the FUCK happened to WordPress while I was gone today?!

I can’t comment on some things, my interface is all screwy.

SOME OF US HATE AND FEAR CHANGE, COCKMONSTERS!!! UNDO!!!! CTRL+Z!!!!!!

17 Comments »

Dead Grandmothers Make The Best Family Glue

When I was 9, my grandmother died.

That would be more sad for me if I ever really remembered her.

Mostly what I have are stories about her. She was one of those people who was inadvertently funny. She’d ask to leave a cemetery because the area was “dead.” When my mom told her that I had lost my first tooth, her hearing aid misfired and she questioned my mom for 20 minutes as to why she would let me lose my shoe.

Where had I seen it last?

I got my revenge by realizing that if ONE tooth brought me a quarter from the tooth fairy, then my grandmother’s dentures would SURELY pay for a brand new Barbie.

*Pro-tip: that shit’s fake. I know dude, me too.

Anyway, my grandmother wasn’t always addled/insane/yeah ok maybe she was, but it got REALLY bad when I was 7, and she had a stroke. That’s when my mom decided she needed full time care. We didn’t have a ton of money, but somehow, my mom found Nancy.

Nancy is from Trinidad. She also had an infant daughter, Mary. My mom was perfectly fine with Nancy bringing Mary to my grandmother’s apartment in Brooklyn. She just needed someone to make sure my grandmother didn’t trip and fall, or forget to eat, or walk out of the house without pants on (a general danger in my family).

It might have been the stroke, but frankly, I doubt it… My grandmother fell in love with Mary. What was not to love?! The girl was adorable! Skin the color of Hershey’s chocolate, hair up in all sorts of braids, and always a smile on her face. My grandma, in some of her less lucid moments, would decide that Mary was in fact HER child, and would stroll proudly through the streets of the most Orthodox Jewish areas in Brooklyn, and yell at people in Yiddish,

“OH! I SEE! SHE CAN’T BE MY BABY BECAUSE SHE’S BLACK?! NOBODY ASKED YOU!!”

Somewhat less threatening when you imagine a 4’5 geriatric Jewish woman yelling at you, but still: impressive. When I came to visit my grandmother, I would spend my time tickling Mary until she’d throw up. I’m pretty sure that’s how you define “love” when you’re a little kid. “I will do something to you until you throw up from it, but if anyone else ever does it to you, or makes you cry, I will punch them in the face until they die a lot.” So we grew up together that way. Mary has always been my cousin, by blood or not. My mother petitioned the Pope to allow her to be Mary’s G-dmother (they’re Catholic). Nancy and Mary came to all my school plays, and I had Mary come and stay with me when she was looking at colleges (and I punched all the boys who looked at her until they threw up. A lot).

And now, Nancy’s mother, all the way in Trinidad is dying. It’s painful to listen to Nancy on the phone. She watched Max today, my first day back at work, and I think it was helpful. I know I’m biased, but babies have a way of making us all forget who we are, and just smile. Just make us want to be the ones who make the baby smile. We want to stroll down streets and watch them suck on their own toes (yes you fucking do, don’t lie).

Babies and death both have a way of forging new ties. As Nancy’s mother passes, I think about the people who have become more permanent fixtures in my life since Max was born, and I’m completely cool with the fact that the bulk of the people who he will know on a daily basis will probably not share many genetic traits with him… but they will love him for the rest of his life.

And punch his bullies in the face.

A lot.

17 Comments »

Growing Pains

Today, at 5PM EST, I marked the last week of my career as a Stay at Home Mom. And it’s bitter-sweet.

It’s so necessary for me. I’m in awe of women who wake up every day, create a structure for themselves and their children, and take joy out of shuttling the wee folk around to swimming classes and music groups. ESPECIALLY when they’re too young to talk.

And yet…

Max isn’t crawling yet. And what are the odds he’ll do it on a weekend when I can catch it? Someone else will see him crawl. Someone else will come to him when he wakes up from naps, and see his sleepy bed head. They’ll see him smile (because that’s the first thing this child does when he wakes up), and they’ll hear him laugh (the second thing). When he walks for the first time, will I be there? Can I schedule that for two sundays from now?

What will change during the days that I’m gone? What will stay the same? I hope I’m here when he wakes up in the morning, and to put him to bed at night… but I can’t be sure. I know I won’t be able to do that every day. I will miss some bedtimes. I will leave before he’s awake, and I’ll come home to a dark nursery.

It’s an indescribable ache. A longing to be here, and a knowledge that what’s best for him is that I’m happy… and I can’t cut it as a stay at home mother.

 

Sometimes, when I have him in my lap, he reaches an arm around me and likes to tickle my ribs. I sit there, suppressing giggles, trying to quiet him down for a nap… will he remember to tickle me next weekend? I wish I could make him promise that he will, and I’m crying, knowing that even those days are numbered…

15 Comments »

Let’s never be best friends.

I am a horribly offensive person. But at least I’m up front about that.

One of my husband’s friends, who is also a friend of mine, posted a quote onto Facebook, along the lines of:

“The Day You Were Born, Was The Day G-D Decided That The World Couldn’t Do Without You.”

…really? REALLY? Look buddy, you CAN’T leave an opening line like that out, and expect me NOT to take it. The fact that none of your other friends have made snarky comments yet, just shows me that you need better friends.

Of course I had to make a comment. Because I’m me.

“So, I guess that means that for every wasted sperm, G-D was all, “NOPE! It’s the tissue for you, SUCKAH!!!”

Fuck you, that’s some comedy GOLD PLATINUM funny shit right there.

He deleted it. It was “embarrassing.”

Seriously? NUT. UP. WHY would you even be friends with me, then? I MADE A VOODOO DOLL FOR MY UNBORN CHILD WHILE NESTING DURING MY PREGNANCY. You should be aware by now that I am not an appropriate person.

Image

*I call him “Sammy the Skeleton.” I snuggle with him every night.*

I kinda wanna screen cap that and put it up as my status on Facebook… but I’m pretty sure that would end the friendship.

meh.

11 Comments »

In which I learn that I have a hard time with boundaries.

I’m kind of like one of those Labrador Retrievers, in that I like to lick myself make new friends everywhere I go. Part of it is innate, but another big part I get from a friend of mine. I used to be her manager, and on our first day together, I took her out to lunch to get to know her better. She started off lunch by saying:

“I just want you to know: I know I have a hole in my crotch.”

INSTANT. FRIENDSHIP.

Of course, she was just referring to her pants, but I choose to ignore that, and believe that she just knew how to sweet talk me with awkwardness.

HER side of the story is that she liked me, and forced me to be her friend by telling me about her crotch, and also “inadvertently” grabbing my boob when our train stopped short one day. That happened, too.

Our friendship is built on accidental sexual harassment.

Anyway, today I went to Ikea with my husband and El Bebe. Ikea is what I do when I need pretty in my life, and Target just won’t fucking cut it anymore. Ikea makes me feel like I could be someplace foreign and exotic, but where everything is clean, in English, and they have delicious meatballs.

Interestingly enough, they don’t like when you go to sleep on one of their beds.

Ask me how I know this.

My husband walked away with Max for a couple of minutes and… ok, I’m not proud of this part, but I ran away.

HEY HEY HEY!! I DIDN’T TOTALLY LEAVE MY HUSBAND AND SON… you know, not for long. I just went to the bedding section when they weren’t looking. I also might have knocked over some KVELLERs or whatever those cabinets are called to make it harder for them to follow by accident. There, I spied a lovely bed that didn’t have a screaming baby near it, and figured I would test the firmness of the mattress.

I fell the fuck asleep in Ikea. A chick in a yellow shirt was all, “Umm… Ma’am… you can’t sleep in the display.”

Agree to disagree… because I totally am right now.

Image

*Her, too. I’mma find this woman, and make her be my friend. We’ll start a club. JOIN US.*

“Ma’am? Ma’am. Do you have any questions about the display?”

Yes… how do I turn the light off, and where do I get a fourth wall?

Eventually, I had to get up, because I’m too pretty for prison. And also because my husband found me. He says that most people don’t actually get horizontal in Ikea, but I think he’s just jealous that I thought of it first.

As we argued, I saw another exhausted looking mom walking around with a small baby. So, because I’m me, I asked her, “You have a baby; if you could take a nap in Ikea for a few hours, wouldn’t you?”

“Totally” she said without batting an eye.

I got her number. I’m going to make her be my best friend, and we’re going to have sleepovers in IKEA.

And eat meatballs in bed. Class, all the way.

16 Comments »

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