Category Archives: idiots

Focus 52: "Glass"

This photograph was taken, a complete fluke considering I did not realize what the prompt was for this week, at the Salvador Dali Museum this past week.  This is the spiral staircase that takes you between the three floors of the museum.  It gradually narrows, slowly winding to an end, just under the glass dome.  It made me think “Stairway to Heaven”.  It made me think about the way things have been going in my life lately.  Things have been looking up and then, leading nowhere real fast.  It’s been a very confusing time in my life.  I have been in and out of the hospital three times in the past three weeks.  Little pieces of me being removed each time.  Doctors saying one thing, doing another, forcing me to lose control over the one thing that we should all take for granted: the ability to have control of our own bodies.  I feel like I am on an upward climb…but repeatedly hitting this glass ceiling that allows me to LOOK towards the future, but not allowing me to get there.  It’s frustrating, to say the least.  I want to be somewhere that I can’t get to.  I am trying to remember that there are people out there that have it a lot worse than I do.  A LOT worse.  I don’t have a fatal disease…something which was a possibility several weeks ago.  What I do have is a disease that is slowly overtaking my reproductive organs, literally encompassing them into this big, woven web of scar tissue, forming a barrier around what does need to be removed.  It is like having to drill through 20 feet worth of solid rock to get a poisonous snake out of your garden.  It should not take so much work to rid yourself of evil, the evil here being one of my ovaries that encompassed in a man-eating tumor.  This cystic tumor is three times the size of my poor, overworked ovary, causing me incredible pain.  Yet, the pain that I have to endure in order to remove, well, the pain…it’s almost ironic. 

To get rid of pain, you must endure worse pain?  Somehow, it just seems medieval. 

This past Thursday, I had a laparoscopic surgery to drain and/or cut the cyst off my ovary.  Upon entry, the doctor discovers that I have webbing, scar tissue, called “endometriosis” covering my entire abdominal cavity.  It is everywhere.  It is “stage 4″, which is apparently the worst you can have.  One of the last things I remember the doctor saying to me before the surgery is…”You know, you should have told us you were having pain before the FIRST surgery.  We could have taken care of it then.”

I had no words.  None.

This is the equivalent of an “I told you so” from a doctor.  And I would be lying if I said it didn’t hurt. 

I had told him, for weeks, about the pain I had been enduring.  My husband and I had just called the doctor two days earlier to tell him that I was in the emergency room with excruciating pain just the day before.  He cut away a portion of my uterus, a bunch of fibroids and polyps.  He did a D & C to check for cancer (none) and then, abladed my uterus so that I could no longer bleed to death nearly every month.  With every passing period, my red blood cell level kept decreasing.  I am severely anemic.  However, the pain.  The pain from that ovary that they never removed remained and I felt this was all for naught.  That caused an extreme amount of mental duress for me.  This past week, I came back into the doctors office again, the pain absolutely maddening and the depression, deepening. 

Doctor makes that remark from earlier and then, gives me 3 hours to let me know that A) your ovary has just blown up, B) you’re going under the knife again for emergency surgery and C) this time…This Glorious, Wonderful Time…we will be removing that ovary. The bane of my existence.  And life shall be good again.

Of course, this is when I find out about my endometriosis.  The moat of impossibility that is encompassing the remainder of my battered uterus, one innocent ovary who is likely wondering “what the hell did ‘I’ do to deserve this?”, and of course, the culprit, the right ovary who…had she not spoken up in the form of extreme pain, would have never alerted me to the presence of the EndoMonster, eating my insides. 

So into surgery I go, tube into the belly.  Soreness extraordinaire when I arise the next day.  Complications.  Stress with my already stressed out husband and an argument that never should have taken place due to a misunderstanding.  But it’s okay.  Because now, I have been made to understand that despite the doctor’s best Black and Decker power tools, the wall of the EndoMonster could not be penetrated and the force within, the control center of pain, that God forsake ovary…still remains.  He could not get through the enormous amount of scar tissue surrounding it. 

Square one. 

There are questions that need to be answers, research that needs to be done, phone calls to be made.  But, in the midst of all this, there was a birthday to celebrate.  Two days after that emergency surgery, I had pre-planned an amazing weekend with my husband to celebrate his 37th year on this planet, 12 of those in my life.  Thusly, we went to the Dali Museum where, to bring this full circle, I took the picture that captured what I am feeling.  The feeling of moving up and yet, going nowhere.  We took a helicopter ride over the beaches in Clearwater.  It was scary, exhilarating and amazing. We did a lot of laughing, a welcome distraction from all the tears as of late.  Then, we went to an out of the way Indian restaurant to burn our mouths on the finest curry based delicacies they had to offer.  We stayed i a hotel, also a welcome reprieve from all the time we have been spending at home, only to wake up to a brand new horror the next day.

My belly, never flat…but never sticking out further than my size F breasts, was completely engorged, swollen and bloated.  It was painful.  Extremely painful.  Tender and hot to the touch.  By later that morning, I could no longer fit into my pants.  It was then I found out that during the laparoscopic surgery, a woman is pumped full of carbon dioxide to both shrink and dry out the organs in the abdominal cavity and to expand the area in which the doctor has to work.  It is quite common, apparently, for the sudden expansion to occur a few days after surgery as my husband and I read horror story after horror story from dozens of beleaguered women who have gone through this process.  It is also, from what I understood (and concur with) extremely painful.  By late Sunday night, my belly was swollen to the point of looking equally as pregnant as my sister in law who is presently 9 months pregnant with twins.  I was scarcely able to breathe as I was babysitting my grandchildren for the night.  I could not lift them and eventually, I could not lift myself without assistance. 

We called the doctor this morning who wanted to see me “right away” as “that kind of pain and swelling is not normal”.  Not normal?  We read literally hundreds of stories that said quite the opposite.  This pain and swelling IS rather normal for this surgery and for some women, the swelling and pain can take weeks to go away.  Once again, I am questioning my doctor…and questioning myself.  I am normally a fabulous advocate for those who cannot speak for themselves in times of health crisis.  Yet, I had scarcely enough time to be able to read and understand what is happening to me.  My husband, God bless him, is doing what he can to give himself an education on the topic…baptism by fire, if you will, but he can only do so much. 

I see my doctor again tomorrow morning and I think, at this visit, I will be releasing him as my gynecologist in lieu of someone who cares enough to be able to give me rational explanations for what is going on with me.  I want to know why this disease was not discovered years early by the barrage of tests I have taken for other gynecological ailments I have suffered through, such as interstitial cystitis and cervical cancer.  I want to know why three gynecologists, two urologists and one family doctor never thought to look for something as common as endometriosis knowing my history of painful periods accompanied by excessive bleeding.

I want answers.  I deserve answers…but my surgeries are coming faster than the questions are forming in my head.

So, when I looked at the spiral staircase, leading upward toward the glass ceiling, allowing in the sunshine and the promise of something brighter, but never quite allowing you to touch it, I thought…there it is.  My life, in a photo.  This is where I am right now.  Looking skyward, with no discernible means of getting there…

just a long climb spiraling rapidly to no where at all.

Focus 52: "April Showers"

Do you have any idea what I went through to get this photograph for you?

I braved “bee hell” to get this picture. I am NO photographer by any means.  Not by a long shot.  But I was trying to get something that included my two favorite colors, and unfortunately, my two favorite colors were smack in the middle of Bumble Bee Haven (aka: The Reason CP Does Not Go Outside).  I am deathly allergic to bees.  I’m not talking about a little swelling, a little itching, a little “ouch.”  I am talking “rush this fat chick the emergency room STAT” kind of allergic.  My throat swells.  I get hives down my throat.  My breathing and my heart rate slows and then, into anaphylactic shock I go. 

The last time I was stung by a bee, I had to have a trach tube inserted into my throat. I was about 7 years old, scarcely remember the incident, but have the tiniest little scar at the base of my neck where a paramedic or doctor sliced open my throat and inserted a tube that saved my life by allowing me to breathe.  Mind you, this is not the rantings of the drama queen you have come to know and love.  This is some true, die hard shit, People.

So, while Anderson Cooper is braving the desert sands of Afghanistan or climbing through the rubble of Haiti to save some random parrot from harm, I am braving the deep tundra of bee hell to appease the owner/operator of the Focus 52 Project to get you the deep, dark lowdown of the flower situation in the month of April here in Central Florida.

I truly deserve a medal for this endeavor, but will accept your love, appreciation and gratitude in lieu of same.

I also accept Paypal.

Is She Out Of Her Mind Edit:  So, I get my flower picture because naturally, April Showers…bring May Flowers, right?  Obvious choice for a photo, no?  I go over to TwoScoopz just to find out that the next Focus 52 project is…yes, you guessed it.  May Flowers.  Well, I’ll tell you what.  Kiss my May Flower ass, Sister.  I am not venturing into the gaping, bee infested maw of gardening HELL to get another flower picture for you.  You’ll have to settle for THIS May Flower:

There you go.  My work here is done. 

I have to vent…

Okay, so Xmas is over. Finally. I have to admit that I absolutely hate this holiday. I think it is so commercialized and total bullshit. And, before anyone says it, it has nothing to do with being a Jew. I hate Channukah equally as much. Actually, I hate any holiday that demands you send cards, flowers, candy, presents and is lead by retail corporations and card companies. This includes Valentines Day as well. Garbage. You shouldn’t have one day a year to tell the person that you love how you feel about them. Just the same way that I hate the entire “Jesus is the reason for the season” crapola. Jesus is not the reason for the season. If you knew anything about Jesus at all, you would probably know that he would be positively appalled by all the gift giving and all the excessive purchasing that we do for our families. The man was rooted in the theory of “good works” as opposed to things. You want to celebrate Christmas? DO something. Feed the homeless. Clothe a child who has nothing. Adopt a child from another country through a Unicef type program and spend the damn twenty bucks to take care of them all month long. $240 a year will keep a child who is in a poverty stricken situation in clothes, in school, well fed and vaccinated against simple diseases that no child should ever die from. Volunteer. Go to a nursing home and read to the elderly. My kids know I have a die hard policy about donating their things to kids who are less fortunate before I buy you one single thing. I don’t exchange xmas presents with my husband for just that reason. We simply don’t believe in it. I bought my grandkids 3 toys each and two outfits. That’s it. Nothing crazy or excessive. Hubs and I spend our gift money on one another donating to St. Jude’s children’s hospital, the pediatric AIDS foundation, the American Cancer Society, etc. I’m not being holier than thou…I just believe that good works trumps good presents every time. I think that Xmas/Channukah should be about the kids, so I don’t really do the whole gift giving thing for the adults in my family. None of my siblings, parents, in laws, etc got presents from me. They know better than to expect it. I will sooner make donations to charity organizations in their names then send them a gift. My two exceptions this year were sending a gift basket of chocolatey yum yum red velvet cupcakes to friends who have been very supportive of the hotband and I this year. The other was to buy my bestie a dress that was absolutely screaming her name. I knew she would look beautiful in it and I wanted her to have it. She is always there for me and while I know damn well I don’t have to buy her anything to let her know how loved she is, I wanted her to have this particular item. It wasn’t expensive…but I knew she would be beautiful in it and she deserves that.

Okay, end that rant. So not what I wanted to vent about.

What I wanted to get out of my system is how seething mad I am at my sister in law. Ever since coming home from Israel, she has treated me like utter shit or rather, worse than usual. You would think that after 11 years of being with her brother, I have more than proven myself to be a good and loving wife to him. She should be happy about that, but no. Always an attitude. Well, in the past 3 months, she has managed to A) Not show up to my granddaughter’s birthday party because she went to a baby shower of a friend of a friend, B) Completely ignored my sons birthday and now, C) opted out of spending Christmas dinner with us because she went to her friends house instead.

Mind you, this is the same woman who used to torture my husband for all the time he was spending with me when he and I were first dating. She used to harass him about how I was consuming his whole life and how he was blowing off his “real family” to be with me and my kids. Well, good morning…but it’s 11 years later. I think we have pretty well established that I wasn’t some fling he was just blowing off his “real family” for. When her marriage collapsed, my hubs and I were there for her completely. Absolutely supportive of her and her endeavors. Whenever she needs someone to watch her son, we are there for her. We invite her and whoever she may be dating that particular month to anything we have. She is never excluded. Yet, she manages to keep herself at bay when it comes to me and my kids.

Admittedly, I used to blame my husband for this. I told him, why on earth would she think YOUR kids are important to you if you allow her to continue this behavior of not acknowledging them at all? But now, it’s gotten to the point where HE is upset by it. I used to tell him how shitty I thought it was that his family doesn’t acknowledge my kids. Hotband has raised Nick and Sam since they were 4 and 12 years old respectively. They are now 15 and 23, for God’s sake. I think it is pretty well established that he loves those kids as if they were conceived from his own loins. We don’t ever not acknowledge her son. That’s my husbands nephew…and I love him just as much as if he were my very own son. When my granddaughter had her birthday party…she simply never showed up for it. No call, no text, nothing. Then, this past October, my son had a small birthday party at a Go Kart track. He invited his cousin, my sister in laws son. He showed up without so much as a card (not his fault, entirely my sister in laws fault). If my son had been a friend of my nephews from school, she wouldn’t have dared to send her son without a gift or a card. So, my husband *finally* worked up the balls to say to her…”Hey, what you did was kind of rude”. First words out of her mouth? “Did your wife put you up to this?” Yeah. My fault. *eye roll* Because my husband couldn’t possibly feel a little slighted that his family STILL doesn’t bother to acknowledge my children as OUR children. I had to laugh at that.

Another example of her shittiness? We flew all the way to Israel for her sons Bar Mitzvah. Nearly five grand in flights and food, etc. PLUS we gave him a gift of well over $200. In the Jewish tradition…the number 18 signifies long life. So, we gave him $18 for every year of his life. He was turning 13, a huge occasion in a Jewish boys life. We gave him $234 cash. Not so much as a thank you from her. Okay, whatever. But the kicker for me? My parents, who are not related to her or my nephew, sent my nephew a check for his bar mitzvah. I thought that was a really nice gesture on their part. They certainly didn’t have to do that. Does she have him call and thank them? No. Can’t be bothered. One month goes by. Two months go by. THREE months go by. Finally, one day, she asked if we could watch her son. As always, we did…and I told my husband to make sure that my nephew CALLS MY PARENTS and thanks them for the gift. It took my husband having to make that phone call for my parents to receive a thank you. I think that’s absolutely disgusting, tacky and tasteless.

Anyway, back to Christmas. My daughter invited her to Christmas dinner. It’s a big deal for Sammi. She and her husband made this big, beautiful dinner for us and the kids. She extended the invitation to her “aunt” to join us. She writes on Facebook that she didn’t know what time dinner was. So, my son in law writes back that it is between 7 and 7:30. No show. No call. No text. No FB message. Nothing. I figure, maybe she decided just to stay home and be alone. Later on FB, I see a photo of her with her on again/off again boyfriend at the home of a friend, enjoying Xmas with them. Wow. Really? She never even called her own brother to wish him a Merry Christmas/Channukah. My husband is so hurt and upset by her actions…but he for some reason, refuses to confront her. Maybe because of something she said to him a LONG time ago. She once told him that if he chose me over her, she would disown him as her brother. I think that stuck in his head and is now afraid of losing his relationship with her. I couldn’t fathom telling my brother that and my bro and I aren’t even remotely as close as my hubs and his sister are/were.

I don’t really know where this post is going. I suppose that I chose to blog this instead of writing her a very confrontational letter. I am so sick and tired of this shit. The only thing I can think of is that she is avoiding us because she owes us a pretty large sum of money. Of course, that would be utterly ridiculous. We borrowed a few grand from her a long time ago when things were lean for us so it’s not like she should be ashamed of needing the help from us. For God’s sake, we are family. Isn’t that what family is supposed to be about? Being able to lean on one another when things get hard?

Look, I don’t care if she hates me. I have tried to reach out to her in every single way possible. She’s made it blatantly obvious she doesn’t care for me as a person…but what on earth does that have to do with the kids? Moreover, what kind of human being shows such blatant disrespect for their brothers children? My kids are my husbands children. He loves them desperately. No different than if we bore them together, or if he had adopted them with me. But, I suppose since they weren’t crafted from his semen that they just don’t matter to her. My husband was in the delivery room when his grandbabies were born. He witnessed both their births. He loves those kids. I know he is hurting over this. I try to refrain from saying anything to him about it, but I know he was really hurt that she didn’t show up tonight. I want so badly to call her up and say, “look bitch, hate me all you want…but you are killing your brother’s heart.”

The whole situation is just so fucking sad. 11 years later. You would think that she would realize that my husband and I are in this for the long haul. You would think she would care more. I don’t know what else to do or say without causing some irreversible damage. I have held my tongue til it literally bled. I don’t know how much longer I can do so…but for my husbands sake, I will make the effort.

In conclusion? Family sucks.

It has to make you laugh at some point…

There are some hugely influential bloggers online. Example? Perez Hilton. Heh. Not an example? This. (Edited to add:) Or this.

It’s awesome to be a legend in ones mind. Truly. I sure as fuck am. With all my flaws and inconsistencies, I still try to grow and evolve as a person constantly. Sometimes, I do it to perfection. Other times, not so much.

What I don’t do is lie to my readers. Never.

Don’t care if there are six of you or sixty of you. Never mattered to me. Never will. (Well, now, in retrospect, that’s not true. I do admit to being a blog whore once upon a time. I gave it up for lent.) Whoever reads this is just as important to me as the next person. And while once upon a time I considered a large readership to be a status symbol, I have definitely grown from that.

What interested me today was that someone asked an “influential blogger” to utilize her blog space to support a charity organization (which I will get to shortly). The person who was supporting the charity was someone who said influential blogger dislikes. However, what in the price of eggs in China does that have to do with you supporting a charity? You have the means, the tools and the time. You blog for several different reader sites. You have FRIENDS who would actually BENEFIT by this program! Military friends! You have the opportunity to make a difference in the lives of so many people…but because you don’t like someone, you reply with “are you fucking kidding me?”

Really?

This is the same “influential blogger” who loves to tell everyone how compassionate and loving she is.

Reality check?

If you have to TELL people you are compassionate and loving? Um, you’re not.

It would be like me having to tell you I’m a bitch. If you can’t surmise that about me in the first 30 seconds of meeting me you are either A)Blind as a fucking wombat or B) Dumb as a box of rocks. There is the third option, of course, that I am simply not doing my job as a bitch. That, however, is highly unlikely.

Now, I don’t mind so much that you turned this blogger down. It’s your blog. You don’t want to expend the energy posting about their charity event…cool. That’s fine. Would have been the nice/right/humane thing to do and given you the chance to show that you are a bigger person, but hell, why do that?

No. What bothered me was someone saying (and I’m paraphrasing here) “She blocked me off of facebook and twitter so now I can say whatever I want without consequences”.

Excuse me?

The blogger that said this to me? Love her. Known her for a long time. Great girl. But really? Consequences? For not liking someone?

What kind of circa 1985 time warp did I fall into here? Are we back in high school? Is there a cool kids table that I don’t know about? Why on earth would there be consequences?

Why? Because there is.

Because said “influential blogger” has a whole lot of sheep “baa-baa’ing” at her heels. Sides have been chosen. It boils down to you either like “US”…or you like “THEM”.

In the past few weeks during “the DRAMA” (didn’t I say I was never going to speak of this again? Heh. C’est la vie. My blog. My rules to break), I have discovered who the sheep really are. There were a lot of mutual friends between US and THEM. It was like a divorce. They got divvied up. Some went to their camp. Some to ours. There have been some who have been “walking the line”, so to speak. In other words, they are trying their damndest to stay neutral and remain friends with all parties.

I respect the FUCK out of those people because, man. I know it surely hasn’t been easy to do.

But, back to consequences.

I, for one, believe for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. I am also a believer in karma. A VERY strong believer in karma. Everyone gets their comeuppance eventually. I don’t WISH this on people. It’s just the way the world works.

What a phenomenal thing it would have been for said “influential blogger” to have said, you know what? I think I WILL send out a post about this charity. After all, I have whored out my blog before for lesser things (and honestly, who among us has not?) and this would be a great opportunity for me to show the world that I am so much smaller than the big picture!

No. Instead, we have people worrying about what other people are going to think.

I was at a point earlier this week where I was going to apo-apo-apo…*gags* apologize *cough* for some of the things that I said to and about said blogger. Some of the things I said were cruel and inadvertently directed at a victim of the scenario and not the perpetrators. I felt bad about that. I did. It’s been eating at me.

But then, as Cyndi Lauper so eloquently put it…I see your true colors shining through.

And suddenly, I find myself apathetic as opposed to apologetic.

After all, if nothing changes…nothing changes.

And that, ladies and gentleman, is my Razorblade Tomato for the day.

That said, let me leave you with this:

Think for yourselves. Be yourselves. Don’t worry about what other people think of you. Life is too short for you not to live it to the fullest. Keep yourself raised up. Do for others, not out of pity or obligation, but because it really makes you fill up the happy tank. Stay charitable and humble. Remember when you are in crisis, someone out there has far greater struggles than you. Pain is temporary, ugly is forever.

Be beautiful.

Please. If it meets your life criteria and you can find it in your heart to click, head over to this site and simply vote for this idea to win the Pepsi Refresh Grant. Nothing to buy, no money to give. Just a simple click on a simple idea that will help thousands of veterans.

Thank you.

Over the bullshit…

I have been writing on this blog for nearly five years already. In that time, I have made some amazing friends. Ah-Mahz-ing. I have been to fabulous parties, traveled all over the country to meet bloggie friends and spent hours on the phone with various bloggers. It’s been a blast. It really has. I will always cherish those memories.

It’s time, however, to clean house.

I have discovered that some of the people I thought I adored, well, I don’t. I realized that it was their online “persona” that swept me away. The person they represented themselves to be online was the person I went wild for. And, while most people in my blog life are exactly what they purport themselves to be, there are an elite few who I have discovered sort of look down on others.

Those are the people that I feel I need to break away from.

I am the Queen of doing dumb fucking things. Hell, dive into my archives. I have five years of fucking painfully stupid as evidence there. I am a bright girl who puts herself into stupid situations. But, I also realized that, at one point, I was starting to become one of those elitists. I started judging people on what their blog was about. If you were not as talented a writer as I, well then, why on earth should I bother to read you? Not the dialogue diva that I am? Feh. Be gone with you. I would only comment on blogs that were of the highest caliber of writing possible.

One day, I read a comment on someone elses blog that said “I don’t read people who have a ‘blogspot’ domain.” Mind you, this reader used to read my blog religiously. Well, darlin’? I have been on Blogger since the day they opened up their pathetic doors. While everyone else ran to WordPress and then eventually, to their own URL’s, I didn’t. I wanted to stay put. I didn’t want to move my blog or put up a “You can find me HERE now” post. No. I want everything right here, where it began. In 20 years from now, you will still know where to find CP, because as long as Blogger stays up and running, I’ll be sitting here with it. I have my own domain name. Have had it for years. Just never had the desire to use it. I think keeping my blogger address keeps me a little humble, actually.

But, I seriously digress.

Since 2010, I am realizing that the people I genuinely cared about, the people who I thought about when I was offline, the same people who I would have ran to in a heartbeat if they needed me…well, they simply don’t feel the same. And, honestly, it’s okay. The need to be with the popular kids is something that I dispensed with back in Junior High School. I never wanted to be popular. I just wanted to have fun. So, whether it was with the geeks, the jocks, the cheers, the stoners, the nerds, whoever…as long as a good time was to be had, that is where I wanted to be.

Somewhere along the way, I skewed my view. I was with the big, popular bloggers. The BIG ones. The ones that EVERYONE read. And, if I took the time away from my popularity to leave a comment on your sorry ass weak blog, then wow…consider yourself honored.

When did “I” turn into “THAT”?

I faded out of the blogworld for awhile. It was a good move on my part. It did something for my humility and brought me back down to earth a little bit. Now, my blog is quiet. Peaceful. I think I prefer this. Now, how to extend it into my real life? It’s time to let a few people go. It’s time to remove my blogroll and some of the people on it. It’s time to remove a few people from Facebook too.

Somehow, the “Friends” button doesn’t apply to them any longer.

The older I am getting, the more I am discovering that everything I need is right under my roof. (Or under a roof in a nearby town). My husband. My son. My daughter and son in law. My grandchildren. One particular girlfriend of mine who always manages to make me laugh. And um, that’s pretty much where it ends.

So, with that in mind, housecleaning will be taking effect later this week.

I just moved into a new house in real life. In celebration of that, I think I will clean up this part of my life as well.

It’s 2010. Time to live a more productive, less toxic existence.