Friday, May 29, 2009

Pure Joy

This weekend, I get to babysit this

and snuggle with this

and cuddle with this

and kiss and hug and play smooshy face with this

My little nephew. My only nephew. Gotta love the little bugger.
It's going to be an awesome weekend.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Pay Me To Eat Your Doughnut -- It's A Win-Win Situation!

Hear ye! Hear ye! Mary still likes her job! She actually thinks it's a keeper! Even if it doesn't pay nearly as much as it's worth. Let's just say, if this were in the good old government, it would pay twice as much. But Mary is not a greedy guts, so she will keep her big mouth shut, smile as she walks into the office every morning, and just be glad she has a job she enjoys and that her ungrateful family now has enough money to buy extra tacos on Friday night.

Yep, it's been two whole weeks, folks (minus two days, one for Canada's Victoria Day, in which we celebrate a dead queen's birthday, and one for
my day of ultimate misery), and I'm still liking it. I'm liking the job so much, guys, that I actually look forward to going in every day!

That, in itself, is a miracle in the making, because I haven't felt like that about a job in a very long time. I'm talking a decade here, folks.

Truth be told, I haven't done much of anything except watch and learn. Steep learning curve, guys. And this chick ain't no spring chicken any longer. But I'm here to prove to everyone that you can teach an old dog new tricks, just not as quickly. Notice all the analogies, guys. Are you following?

Marlene, my trainer, actually trusted me enough yesterday to allow me to speak to some field workers. And then, when I was done, and I hadn't made a fool of myself, she high-fived me, and I think she had a look of utter surprise on her face, and told me I was "awesome". She's 22, so she uses words like that a lot. And that made my day. I even shared my caramel cake bites with her.

The only thing that I can safely say makes me want to pull my hair out is the woman who sits beside Marlene. Her name's Anita, and she is a great woman. In her 50s, francophone, and full of life. So, what is the problem, you ask?

She talks LIKE THIS ON THE PHONE AND TO EVERYONE AROUND HER, and whether or not she is speaking to you, you have no choice but to listen to her, because her voice rings throughout the office, and the decibel range rivals the 747s that fly overhead every 10 minutes. And what's even worse is she knows she does this, and she continues to do it!

I'm thinking she either doesn't care that it's giving me a subdural hematoma, or that she forgets herself, or maybe that she thinks it's kind of cute. Either way, it's a slow and undignified death.

The only saving grace in all this is that she will soon be moving into an office that has a door on it that closes. Amen.

The other great thing that I discovered about this job is that it does not actually take me 35 minutes to get to work in the mornings, and 45 minutes to get home at night. This is all thanks to Mr. Handsome and his amazing driving skills. He had to drive me into work on Tuesday because I was not legally allowed to drive because of all the supposed sedation I had received on Monday for (insert sarcastic tone) my
amazingly painless hospital procedures. Mr. Handsome thought it might be a good idea to take another route, because the route I take couldn't possibly be the best one. So, another route he took, and guess what, guys? It cut my travelling time in half! IN HALF!! Who knew? Thank you, Mr. Handsome. You're in my good books again. Well, he was anyway, really. But those things can change with the flick of an eyelash, so I'm just sayin'.

And the last thing I wanted to say about my new job is that I get all the free coffee and tea I want, and the occasional doughnut and cake. And that's all I've ever really wanted in a job.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Whistle While You Toot

Hot metal pokers in both eyes would have been more welcome than my recent double dipping experience, forever to be known as the Endoscopic/Colonoscopic Examination From the Depths of Hell.

I'm still recovering, so this post will heretoforth be in point form.

* 7 p.m. Sunday. I scarf down 6 oz. of Pico Salax. Not the best tasting stuff, but not god-awful either. Taste: something between lime juice, tart orange, mixed with a bit of fizz.

* 9 p.m. Sunday. Who knew a butt could pee? Pico Salax = constant and extreme diarrhea. I'm still feeling pretty good. This Pico Salax stuff ain't half bad, I say to Mr. Handsome.

* 9:30 p.m. Sunday. Utter and extreme nausea. They didn't warn me about this.

* 10 p.m. Sunday. The migraine begins. I take five extra strength Tylenols, a couple of Gravols, and I pray for sleep.

* 2 a.m. Monday. Hello toilet.

* 4:06 a.m. Monday. Yo. Here I am again, bathroom.

* 6:12 a.m. Monday. You know the drill.

* 8 a.m. Monday. I'm due for my second Pico Salax dose, but cannot make myself mix the goop. I then throw up at the sight of garlic roast beef on the kitchen counter.

* 8:20 a.m. I moan softly as I lie on the couch, unable to move. My head throbs. My stomach hurts. I want to die.

* 8:30 a.m. I call the doctor's office, explaining to the answering machine that I cannot down the second dose of medication, and ask whether this actually make a difference in the ultimate outcome. I'm hoping the answer is either "No", or "Oh, we'll have to cancel the test."

* 10:20 a.m. The doctor's secretary calls and tells me to drink it now, then keep drinking liquids until noon, even though the instructions state very clearly to stop all liquids by 11 a.m. I take more Tylenol and hope I don't throw up again.

* Noon. I get dressed, try and finish my first bottle of Gatorade.

* 12:20 p.m. Mr. Handsome drives me to the hospital, where I have to once again run to the bathroom.

* 1 p.m. The nurse directs me to a tiny locker room, where I get changed into fancy hospital pajamas. I think to myself that I might be able to steal these to wear around the house. They're that nice. So that's where my hard-earned pennies go...

* 1:07 p.m. Nurse #1 takes me in to ask me some questions and start an IV. She asks many questions, but not once does she look at me as she asks. I finally decide not to answer her until she actually looks at me and acknowledges my existence. Bitch.

* 1:10 p.m. Nurse #1 does not like that I kept drinking until noon. Makes sour face as she writes the time down on my wristband, and shoos me back out to the waiting room.

* 1:45 p.m. My "time" is here, but they are calling other people in front of me. I don't care, because it means not having to go in under the scope...yet.

* 2:20 p.m. I decide Nurse #1 must have told someone about me drinking until noon, because now I'm still waiting, and there can be no other reason. Big bitch.

* 2:45 p.m. My name is called. Mr. Handsome bids me farewell. My life flashes before my eyes.

* 2:50 p.m. I am instructed to lie on the table facing the doctor. Nurse #2 pulls out a large needle and tells me the medication will sedate me so that I don't feel anything. I make sure she understands fully that I do not want to know what is going on, and she assures me that will be the case. I again make sure, stating clearly and matter of factly that I am scared shitless. Nurse #2 says I will be awake, but I won't care. I feel okay with that. She pushes the medication into my vein, and I feel a little buzz, but I am still really very aware of everything.

* 2:51 p.m. The doctor shows me the endoscope, and tells me to swallow, but only once. Also, I am instructed to keep breathing, and keep it under control.

* 2:52 p.m. I am gagging, choking, vomiting, and sobbing, all at once. Didn't think that was possible. I am here to tell you, it most definitely is.

* 2:54 p.m. Doctor tries to inflate my stomach with the scope, and finds that scope is not working properly. He promptly removes scope.

* 2:55 p.m. Doctor tells me I have to go through entire procedure again with a different scope. I feel like a beaten down dog.

* 2:56 p.m. More gagging, coughing, spewing and major unhappiness. Doctor tells me not to let the air out, but how does one hold in belches the power of Vesuvius? Answer: you don't. I proceed to sound like Homer Simpson after a few beers.

* 3 p.m. Scope is out. Doctor announces that test is over. Now it's time for the other end.

* 3:03 p.m. My butt is now in full view of the world, and it's cold and lonely.

* 3:04 p.m. The scope goes in, and just when I thought it couldn't get any worse, it does.

* 3:06 p.m. The doctor tells me to control myself, take deep breaths. I try to, but the huge rod digging inside my large bowel kind of prevents me from doing so. I try to control my screaming, but to no avail. I make a mental note to ask the doctor later on if anyone has ever been as noisy as I am during this godforsaken test from beyond hell.

* 3:07 p.m. Doc tells me not to hold the air in. Don't be shy, let it out. I fart continuously in his face, and hope he hates every minute of it as much as I do.

* 3:12 p.m. The test is over. They swing me into the recovery room, cover me up, and leave me in my misery. Oh, wait. It's not over. The nurse comes back in and shoves a tube up my anal cavity to let out the air they pumped into me. How dainty, I think as I fall into a coma.

* 4:37 p.m. I awake to the faint sound of a whistle. I try to figure out what the sound might be, and after a couple of seconds, realize it's my ass. I spend the next few minutes trying to play "Mary Had A Little Lamb" with the wind that continuously seems to come out of my crevice. And then I fall asleep again. God only knows what tune I play while unconscious.

* 5:12 p.m. I awake again to a nurse asking if I'd like a muffin and some hot tea. My blood pressure is low and they also want to get rid of me.

* 5:14 p.m. I eat my muffin and drink my tea, all the while trying to control my ass wind. It's very difficult when you're semi-conscious and in pain. I am now fully aware that there are quite a few people around me, all within hearing distance of my whistle. I hope I wasn't out of tune.

* 5:18 p.m. Nurse #3 tells me I can get dressed and go home. Just as she pulls the curtain around my stretcher so that I have a little privacy, she realizes I still have a tube shoved up the wahoo, and she giggles and she loudly proclaims to everyone in the room, "Oh, I guess I have to remove that tube, don't I? You don't want to be going home with that in your bum, now, do you?"

And with that, I got dressed, Nurse #3 led me out to Mr. Handsome, who took me home. I then slept until Tuesday morning, and although I'm feeling much better, I am still quite sore and sad.

Let the record state that I will never again subject myself to such misery. Unless I am put out, fully unconscious, no doctor will ever touch me in that way again.

Let us just say Amen right here.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Viral Annoyance

I'm afraid it's spreading.

All our neighbours are now assholes.

What the hell is happening? Did we move into the Asshole Neighbourhood without knowing it? Or did these neighbours all take some course in asshole excellence one weekend when we were gone? Because I'd just like to know.

Sunday morning, 7 a.m. The Nasties across the street from us, next door to
Vacuum Man (oh, you must remember him and his van vacuum, right?) decided that would be a great time to pull out the lawnmower and give the lawn a good cutting. Em calls these people The Richies, because they have an intercom at their front door and a giant silver and white seahorse in their garden. I had to explain to her that they are, in fact, not rich, and only have the intercom because they are extremely anti-social, think they're better than the rest of us, and refuse to meet anyone face-to-face. And the seahorse ... well, that's pretty much inexplicable. One of these days, when I've had an extra vodka and cranberry, I'm going to kidnap that damn seahorse because I get really sick of having it glare at me all summer long. Anyway, out they were, cutting their lawn, at 7 on a Sunday morning.

Then, on the other side of Vacuum Man, we have
the neighbour who plays with his tent trailer. Remember him? Well, this same Sunday morning, at 7:30 a.m., he was cutting branches and bushes on his property with a noisy saw. His tent trailer was apparently already up for the day.

What gives? What is happening to this society, where we have people -- actual neighbours -- who are supposed to respect one another, but go to such effort to annoy all the other neighbours? You know, the ones who have something else to do early on a Sunday morning besides make lots of noise. Something else = sleeping in.

I suppose it's time I make more of an effort, and become a more annoying neighbour myself. I'm not usually one to follow the crowd. Ever. I'm also usually overly sensitive to other people's needs. So, if there's ever even the tiniest chance that something may annoy another person, I don't do it.

All that's about the change, guys. The New Mary has arrived.

I think I'll begin by taking Gryphon for a walk. Just a short one, back and forth along these neighbours' lawns. And oops! Oh dear. Gryphon had to go for a poop, and looky see, I didn't bring my plastic bag with me. Oh well. Darn.

Then, I think I'll get up nice and early next weekend and decide to clean out both cars. I'll put on my favourite Air Supply CD, and because I still can't hear from my left ear, I'll have to put it on really loud. Oh, so sorry. Air Supply isn't on your list of favourites? That just sucks. Hugely.

Oh, and I was also thinking of taking a car mechanics class, so we can save some money, because you know how those mechanics can do whatever they want and you never really know what they're doing or not doing with your car, and then you end up paying huge amounts through the nose, and you don't even know if they actually fixed the problem in the first place. And so then, I could put our older car up on those metal stilts, and change the oil and stuff, but I'd have to do that on the street, because I wouldn't want oil spillage on our laneway.

I think the neighbours would love that.

And then, I think I'd really start getting invited to all the neighbourhood parties. For sure.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

A Mixed Medley of Melodious Mumblings

It's early Saturday night, and I just sent both kids to bed because I couldn't (and shouldn't have to) listen to their fighting and bickering any longer. And dammit, I need my peace and quiet, now that I'm a working girl. It's also interrupting my digestion.

It's been a hard week, but a good week. I'm really liking my new job, although I haven't really done anything but watch for the most part. This job is challenging, interesting, exciting and worthwhile, and I can't wait until I'm actually doing something. I also can't wait until I get my very own desk! Which, guys, is probably happening next week! Then, I can decorate it with all my little doodads and thingamabobs that will make it ALL MINE! I'm territorial that way, and am also getting tired of hauling my big ass bag around with me all the time, not to mention my Starbucks thermos cup full of hot coffee to keep me awake, and my packet of Mentos. They need a home.

I'm also starting things off wonderfully by taking Monday off. Because, yes, this is the day I've been waiting for for a long, long time. Monday is the day the doctor cleans my insides out with a nice, long, flexible tube, otherwise known as an endoscopy and a colonoscopy. Can you hear the desperation excitement in my voice?

So, in preparation for this grand day of exploration, I have to take something called Pico Salax. It's a powdery substance that you mix into a glass of water and then scarg down. Apparently it isn't pleasant. And then the real fun begins, because Pico Salax is an extremely potent oral laxative. Let's just say the doctor warned me to be sure to be very close to a toilet after ingesting this yummy liquid. Enough said.

You can be sure that if anything amazing happens as a result of said laxative, you'll be the first to know. First, that is, besides my family, who has to live with me and has no choice but to experience this firsthand. And, you can also be sure that, because they are my family, I will ensure they get the full experience, if you know what I mean. Because family has to stick together, through thick and thin. Get it?

I hope I remember not to go grocery shopping or Home Depot after taking a swig of this stuff. My mind is a sieve. And wouldn't that be a nice gift for all the shoppers? Can you say "Clean up in Aisle 5,6,7, and 8!" or maybe "Evacuate! Evacuate!" with sirens going off, big red lights flashing, and the employees running for their lives, although those words were actually being directed at yours truly.

I just hope the Pico Salax (say those words five times fast, and tell me you don't like the sound of them) does the job and is out of my system by Monday night, because really, I am planning on going back to work Tuesday, and the last thing I think they'd want from me is a puddle of you-know-what beside their desks ...

And I'd also just like to say that if I accidentally get pregnant (and I mean accidentally), the baby's name will be Pico Salax.


I know some of you have not been able to open my blog this past week. I am so sorry, because I can just imagine the sorrow you must have been going through, not to mention the withdrawal symptoms. My friend Slut has been complaining bitterly, because my blog is the only way she can stay in touch with me, because she and I don't own phones, and even if we did, our index fingers are non-existent. Mr. Handsome, on the other hand, has been quite pleased, although secretly, I know he's really upset, because he also keeps up with me through this blog. Thank god for blogs, is all I can say.

Anyway, all this to say that I think I've fixed the problem. Apparently, something's happened within Blogger itself, and a lot of fellow bloggers have been having this problem. It seems to have something to do with the "Followers" widget that I had in my sidebar. I removed it, and things now seem to be fine. I will replace the widget when the problem is fixed because, in my very and extremely humble opinion, I believe it's so very important to show my followers to the world, because they are the bestest in the west. I also like to scan their faces whenever I'm feeling lonely, which is most days.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

When In Doubt, Get The Po Po Out

So, guys, I went to Dee's school's Volunteer Thank You Breakfast a couple of days ago. It's the school staff's way of saying "thank you" to the parents who volunteer their time to help things go more smoothly at the school, as well as to provide extra-curricular activities that would otherwise not be available to the students.

I don't do much, but for the past few years, a couple of times a week, I'd go into the school office first thing in the morning and do something called "safe arrival", where I take attendance for all the kids at school. If a child is absent, the parent is supposed to call the school and let them know, so that we don't start freaking out and call the police and get search parties out blahblahblah. Of course, more often than not, the parents don't bother calling, so it's my job to call them and shit on them make sure their precious little ones are safely ensconced at home.

I actually quite enjoy doing this, but it's come to an abrupt end now, what with my new job and all. Money comes before charity, is my motto. Seriously, though, I'd continue doing it if my schedule allowed. There's nothing like a tiny little child coming into the office, attendance book in hand, looking up at you with those huge bug eyes, to make you swoon.

As I was saying, I was invited to this volunteer breakfast thing. Other years, I didn't go because I'm kind of shy about these things and also because I don't like fraternizing with anyone, really. I don't really like people. What with their opinions and all ...

This year, however, I decided what the hell, I'll go see what this shindig is all about.

Well, let me tell you, when I walked into the library, the air in my lungs was sucked right out because of the vast number of people in the room. You could feel the cloud of moist armpit air above your head, and the heaviness of everyone's morning breath hanging right there in front of your nose. Oh, it was wonderful.

I ran straight to the coffee pots and pretended to calmly pour myself a cuppa, all the while scanning the room, looking for a familiar face. Anyone would do.

Anyone, that is, except Ass' mother.

You remember Ass, don't you, guys? He's the bastard child who thought he could bully my little angel Dee. He's the prick boy who thought it would be oh so funny to kick my guy in the back and in the stomach, and call him all sorts of names. He's the fuckface student we ended up calling the po po on. Remember now?

As luck would have it (does luck ever have it any other way with me?), the only other person I knew in the entire room was standing right next to Ass' mother.

So, what did I do, you ask? I did what any person would do. I ran the other way.

No, I didn't. I wanted to, but I didn't. I actually decided to have a little fun with this scenario put before me. Life's too short not to have a little fun with other people's brains when you have the upper hand, folks.

I actually walked right around Ass' mother, and tapped my friend on the shoulder, and then hugged her and didn't let go for a really inappropriate amount of time.

Then, I barged into the conversation, and totally ignored Ass' mother, as I thought I should. Wouldn't you, if you had actually called the po po on her and her little ass of a son? She actually began talking to us, and looked right at me! I could not believe the nerve. I wanted to punch her in the throat, that's what I wanted to do. But the principal was right there, and I thought that might not be such a good move, what with having finally convinced her that Dee was not the instigator in all the altercations and all. Would not be a good role model kind of thing, if you follow. And I'm all about being a good role model, which you already knew, but I'm just reiterating just in case.

I also thought about tripping her, maybe ripping her pretty little work outfit, or messing up her pretty little hairdo. But I did none of those, guys. Be proud of your Mackerel. Be very proud.

What ended up happening, you ask? Well, I didn't budge. I could feel the tension in the air, mixing with the armpit humidity and morning breath sludge, and I did not move. I was the better person in this little crowd, I was. Ass' mother kept talking, and looking at me, as if she was staring me down. Or else she was just very very stupid, because she obviously had no idea who she was dealing with.

Ass' mother finally made some sorry excuse about needing some more coffee, or having to go catch some teacher before the bell rang, blahblahblah, whatever. And then, out of the corner of my eye, because I'm sly like that, I saw her start coming back toward our group, and then she stopped. She stopped like a deer in the headlights, guys. And she looked right at me, her mouth twitched a little bit, and then she turned around and left. Yes, just like that.

{insert evil laugh here}

And then the skies opened, and I heard the angels sing, and all was good in the world.

The motto of this story: When you've fought every battle, thrown every dart, and the enemy keeps on coming, call the po po.

Just a little update: I tried my darndest to get to your blogs yesterday and leave a little love, but blogger didn't seem to be working so well. I couldn't even open my own site, and a few other people told me the same. Not only that, but my visitors went waaaay down yesterday. Am I the only one who was having this problem, or are you all trying to tell me something? Just a little humour there...

Also, I just wanted to apologize for not getting to people's sites this week like I try to do normally ... that is, when I'm not working for a living. I'm just learning to adapt to my new schedule, so please bear with me while I figure things out. Don't give up on me! Please?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Coffee Please!

It was a momentous day. It was a day of joy, a day of discovery. A day of confusion, a day of hunger, and a day of satisfaction. It was my first day of work. I made it, and now I lie naked on my bed, unable to move. No, there are no photos. You wouldn't want to see them anyway. Believe me.

I didn't really know what to expect with this job, except in general terms, but I'm here to tell you that I really think I'm going to like it.

Heck, I get to talk to people on the phone all day long! And get paid for it! You can't beat that, unless it includes boxes of bon bons, an endless dribble of mojitos slowly trickling down my throat in-between calls, Patrick Dempsey massaging my feet, and a Cirque de Soleil performance outside my window. I'm going to work on it as soon as I'm a little more established.

All in all, this job is going to be more challenging than I thought, and that's a good thing. I wanted something that wasn't borrrring and would have me drooling on my keyboard by 10 a.m., but something that had a direct, visible end result, made me think, solve problems, and offer me challenges on a daily basis. What I love is that there doesn't seem to be a dull moment, but at the end of the day, you get to leave it all behind, go home, and forget about it all until the next day.

In a nutshell, my job will be comprised of linking people with the care they need, allowing them to stay at home and remain independent as long as possible. Sounds easy, but there are all sorts of things that can throw a wrench into things: a caregiver breaks a scapula, or a client decides to go visit her long-lost second cousin twice removed and forfeit her weekly bath, or a client only speaks French, and there is absolutely no one who can fill the schedule and be understood by this client. It's a dangerous world out there, folks. And I'm going to save it, one phone call at a time.

I left the office yesterday entirely confused, more so than usual, although I have to say that by three-quarters of the way through the day, I was actually getting the hang of a couple of things. Which isn't to say that, come today, I'll be any more ahead than I was. In fact, I'll probably be behind, because I had to go in this morning for 7 a.m., which means I had to get up at 5:45 a.m., which just makes me sob writing this. Who does this? Cattle ranchers and surgeons, that's who. I just hope they don't mind me looking like a hot bag of shit today, because that will most definitely be me.

If you don't hear from me for the rest of this week, you'll know why. I'll either be at work, or at the Starbucks four minutes away from the office, my head buried in a Venti Triple Espresso Double Mocha Bean.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Long Weekends Are Great Illness Inducers

I've spent this long weekend sitting at home, on the couch, mounds of snotty toilet paper around me, as I battle my second bad cold of the year. Well, actually, it might very well be my first of the year, because that other thing I had back in April, I think that was a full-blown influenza. Maybe even a precursor to the H1N1 Swiny Flu: the Piglet Flu.

I think I might finally be turning the corner, because my head no longer feels like a ball-peen hammer knocked on it for about 27 years straight, and my throat now only feels like semi-sharp shards of glass are poking it instead of a steady stream of brand new, hot razor blades. I'm still coughing, though, but it's more of a controlled hack instead of a full-blown phlegm-spewing lung storm.

I had big plans for this weekend, my last weekend before I am once again gainfully employed and can no longer sit on my ever-widening ass and eat crumpets while I blog/boss the kids around/think about doing a load of laundry.

No, folks, those days are over.

Because now my weekends will be work. They will be used to catch up on all things extraneous, such as groceries, washing underwear, and trying to figure out ways I can do my job from home because I like to stay in my sweats all day long, with unkempt hair (love that word, "unkempt"), allowing the occasional gaseous emission as I please. Speaking of which, I'm not sure how to accomplish the old fart in an office cubicle. Although, I could do as Mr. Handsome does, and have his portable fan blowing full force in all directions, dissipating said gaseous emission so that no one really knows where that god-awful Smell of Hell came from. He's tricky, that Mr. Handsome. That's why I love him.

The long weekend began with me bringing Em to the airport early Friday morning. She was on her way to a weekend teen camp about two hours northwest of Toronto. She was excited to be going on a new adventure, and I was excited because it meant four days without monster fights between her and Dee, which meant my stomach wouldn't be in a constant Carrick Bend knot.

The tickle in my throat started last Tuesday, and by Wednesday night, I knew I was getting sick. By Friday morning, I looked and felt like this:

Notice the bags under the eyes, the lolling tongue, and unkempt hair.

I came home from the airport, and promptly lay on the couch for the remainder of the day.

I barely slept that night, and awoke early Saturday to a very swollen head, achy joints, and a hacking 80-year-old smoker's cough.

I didn't feel too bad doing absolutely, positively nothing that day because it was grey and cold and no one in their right minds would have been doing much anyway (except our neighbour across the street, who cleaned out his van again). I felt a little bad for Dee, who was left to fend for himself most of the day since I was in no shape to do anything but sob and moan (more than I usually do), and Mr. Handsome ended up taking a three-hour nap himself. Let's just say Dee became very acquainted with his books and the inside of his nose.

That night, I decided I was going to do whatever it took to feel better. I needed the sleep, and a little less snot pouring out of my nostrils would be a nice change. So, while 'the boys' watched Lethal Weapon at about volume 49, oohing and aahing everytime the blood spurted, or a nipple appeared on the screen, I went to bed. I tried to stay up, because how often do you get to watch a classy movie like that with your two favourite guys, especially when a very young and virile Mel Gibson is staring back at you with those striking blue eyes? But, as luck would have it, my bowling ball head refused to stay upright.

I made my way upstairs and into the bathroom, and started pulling out bottles and tubes and any and all other paraphernalia I could find. The bathroom counter looked like a pharmacy, something of which I'm pretty damn proud, because we always have something on hand for most any ill of the moment. I grabbed a couple of sinus pills, five extra strength Tylenols, my anti-inflammatory (arthritis never sleeps), and then sprayed my nostrils generously with some Otrivin. Yeah, that's right. I threw all caution to the wind and just didn't care anymore. Because that's the kind of woman I am. Fierce. Determined. And drugged out of my bloody mind.

Let's just say I didn't move until 7 a.m. Sunday. And on the Seventh Day, the world was good. And Woman smiled, and looked down uponst herself, and decideth that drugs are a mighty goodly thing.

This day was a better day, with less cough, snot and horking going on overall. I only went through half a roll of toilet paper, as compared to two rolls the day before. Although it was a better day outdoors, I decided it was better to just stay put, catch up on my lovely blog friends, and whine to myself. I did want to go buy some flowers to plant, but decided it was a no go. Especially since the weather people were warning of frost in the area overnight, which I think might very well be a first for this time of year.

And Monday, folks, was even better! Still sick, but I actually had more energy than I normally have when I'm supposedly feeling fine! How is that even possible? I did three loads of dishes, showered, and cleaned up my bedroom a tad. I also had enough energy to pick out my outfit for my first day of work, pick up Em from the airport, and make dinner. I felt better as the day progressed, which, again, is a complete anomaly to how my days usually go.

I was supposed to go to my sister-in-law and brother Woodnymph and Adonis' house on Monday as well because they were having a showcase of Woodnymph's artwork, but I decided the chance of passing this wretched virus on to them was too much, especially with Woodnymph's delicate system. Sorry guys. Next time, try to time things better, okay?

Of course, it really sucks that I felt so crappy for most of the long weekend, because just imagine the things I could have done with my time! I could have thumb wrestled with Dee, watched Mr. Handsome mow the lawn, and texted Em at her camp (despite the fact that she was not supposed to have brought her cell phone with her, but imagine the fun if she had gotten in trouble!).

I'm trying to look at the silver lining in this grey cloud, folks. Because that's how this girl rolls. So, at least I'll be in fine shape to begin my new job, which starts today, and not end up making half the office sick. Because that wouldn't be such a great way to start a job in a relatively small office. It's going to be hard enough for me to get along with everyone.

Monday, May 18, 2009

How Does One Remove A Boyle?

My husband wants Susan Boyle, and in a bad way.

Everytime he goes upstairs to the office, after a few minutes' time, just long enough to allow the computer to boot up, I hear the faint strain of Susan trilling her little song on Simon Cowell's British cash grab show, Britain's Got Talent.

Out of utter curiosity, and because my background is investigative journalism at its finest, I asked him why in hell's name he does this.

His response: "She's hot."

Last night, he listened to her six times. SIX. TIMES.

He tells me she's inspirational.

I tell him, "I'll show you inspirational. Get over here, big boy."

But no, guys, he won't budge from the computer. He sits there, staring at her, like a dog at a bone. She's irresistible. I even found a pool of drool on the keyboard later that evening.

Then, Mr. Handsome was sitting beside me on the couch, and we were both watching something inane, as we always do after dinner, because that's our scheduled "cuddle time", although I know it's really more like "digest the crap that was our dinner time". Regardless, we were sitting there, and I asked once again what he got out of watching that video over and over and over again. And, after a longer-than-needed pause, he said, "I think I need to go upstairs."

Then, just the other night, he was in a deep sleep, and he rolled over and started stroking my face lovingly, as he never does, because I will unleash the Wrath of the Beauty Sleep Gods on him, and then he said, "Oh, Susan."

Yes, he really did.

Now, don't get me wrong. I think it's all great stuff, this Susan Boyle. Amazing, really. Kind of like a fairytale. The toad turns into a prince, except the prince is a woman with very bushy eyebrows.

But it still doesn't give Mr. Handsome any right or reason to ogle her, to watch her time and time again in the privacy of his office. It's sickening is what it is.

So, I've decided that, to win him back, I am going to have a Susan Boyle makeover, so that Mr. Handsome looks at no one but me. Because I will not be beaten down by anyone, nay, not even Queen Boyle.

I actually think I may be on to something, guys. You know how it works. Someone famous starts dressing differently, doing their hair a totally rad way, and there you have it -- the new fashion of the season. Remember Avril Lavigne and her t-shirt and tie ensemble? Or Madonna and her underwear over top her clothing idiocy?

Everyone wants to copy it, just so they can have a piece of the star, and feel like they're that much closer to him or her. So, I think I'm going to grab the proverbial bull by the horns, yessir, and I'm going to get me a makeover a la Boyle. I'll call it the Boylemaker, and it will be everything awesome and amazing, because suddenly, everyone will want to be like Susan, and Mr. Handsome will once again only have eyes for me.

Look at this! Everyone's doing it. Gwynneth, Paris, Jessica. They can't all be wrong, can they?

Not only that, but eventually, after this all subsides and every second woman on the street has the "Susan", she will fade into the woodwork like an old stain, and I will once again be queen of my household. I will be the New Susan.

Just the way it's supposed to be.

There is no one who will outdo me in my own domain. No one. Not even Susan Boyle.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

And Where Did He Learn This?

Outside the window, a family of three slowly walks by: a dad, very pregnant mom, and their 3-year-old boy.

Me: Oh, look! It's Matthew and his parents. Look how big his mom is getting. She should be having that baby soon.

Dee, sitting beside me: OH MY GOD!!

Me: What?!

Dee: She's HUGE!!

Me: Well, she's going to have her baby soon.

Dee: Again?! (Pause) Those guys sure must have a lot of sex!

Friday, May 15, 2009

I Got The Job!

I got the job. It's the job I was hoping to get. The one I interviewed for on Monday.

Obviously, they haven't read my blog, or else they'd be running so fast the other way, all I'd see is the dust and their heels kicking up as they disappear beyond the horizon.

It's all still very surreal. It seems like it was almost too easy. One interview. That was it. A two-day wait for their decision.

And then, when I think about my husband's face when I got off the phone and told him, I get all mushy inside. This means so much for me and my family. I won't feel like such a leech any more. And, although Mr. Handsome has been so very patient through everything, I know he's been very worried about things (and not because he's super-anal about all things financial), and probably praying a bit, despite the fact that he's not a religious person.

You see, since Mr. Handsome started his doctorate studies, and since Dee was born and shortly after diagnosed with cancer, we have not both held down full-time jobs at the same time. And that in itself has taken its toll over the years. While he was studying, he worked part-time and brought some money in, and I started up my own daycare business, which did really well. Then, he started working full-time, and I started up my real estate business, which did well, but also had a lot of unexpected expenses attached to it. It also took its toll on me physically and emotionally. And then, when the economy took its nosedive last fall, I decided to take a break.

And then I had a bit of a nervous breakdown, where I writhed in mental anguish on the couch and repeatedly told myself what a loser I was, and that I could do nothing right, and didn't really know what I wanted anymore. That was fun, but I finally decided it was time to get off my ass and get with the program once again.

And here we are.

I was ready for a steady-paying job, where I would put in my hours, do my best, and actually get paid for it, unlike real estate, where you work really hard, give your clients your firstborn child, and then end up spending money instead of making it when these clients end up not buying or selling, for whatever reason. Or, they blame you for the state of the economy, yell at you really loudly, and then use another realtor. Yeah, it happens.

Oh, I also had many many great and wonderful clients, and many are now my friends, but those not-so-nice ones always stand out, don't they?

Anyway, I'm still a licensed realtor, and may even go back to it full-time at some point, but right now, I just needed something less angst-filled, and something a little more consistent in terms of a paycheque. I'm funny that way, but knowing we can pay the bills makes me feel a little better.

This job seems like a great fit for me. I don't know much about it at the moment, except that there is a lot of training involved, and job shadowing. In a nutshell, I'll be a liaison between the community health care people and the field staff who go to people's homes and take care of their various needs. I'll be helping the most vulnerable in this society feel like they're still important, and worthy of being cared for, and alive, not just existing. I'm helping them keep what little of their dignity they have left.

Ever since my father passed away (it's three-and-a-half years now), I have realized there is this whole other world out there that we don't see. Not that it's not there for us to see. It's more that we refuse to look and acknowledge it. Because this part of the world is not for the weak. It is filled with the weakest of our society, but I am telling you, these people are actually the strongest. These are the people who are struggling to survive, to do more than just exist, to make it through another day. These are the elderly and the ill.

My father was one of them, and through the last 10 months of his life, he wanted nothing more than to go back home so that he could sit in his favourite rocking chair and just be. There are dwindling numbers of the original homeowners in my neighbourhood going through this exact scenario now, and I know the despair they are feeling as the thin thread that is what is left of their independence is slowly getting weaker. They know what is coming, and they are fighting with everything they've got, which, in some instances, is not a lot.

For a long time now, I've wanted to do something that makes a difference. And yes, I was doing that with both my daycare and with my real estate business, but my focus was changing. My dad made it very obvious to me that these vulnerable people need a voice. And that's what I'm going to try to be, in my small but meaningful way. It's a start.

This is what I know I am doing in my job, and I can't wait to get started.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Cravin' For A Beaver Tail, Or, How I Became a Canadian Blogger

Blogging has been somewhat of a saviour in this life of mine. I started late last October, and I soon found myself addicted, needing my "fix" of blog writing everyday as much as I need my supersized bag of Cheetos beside my bed.

I live in Canada's capital, and a wonderful place it is. Most of the blogs I follow are written by my American friends. It doesn't seem like the blogosphere has hit Canada in the same way, although I could be very wrong. I am still pretty new to all this. Maybe it's just that we up here in the North are just too busy trying to keep warm, and our fingers just can't type as fast. Or maybe it's because most of us don't yet have electricity or running water... Just kidding, for god's sake. I have a running heater in my igloo that keeps things pretty toasty.

Anyway, as I was looking around for some Canadian blogs, I happened upon
Canada Blog Friends. This isn't just your everyday blog. In fact, this blog exists to highlight other Canadian blogs, and to bring these awesome blogs to the forefront.

And looky here! They've actually taken the time and energy to talk about little old me! I am honoured, amazed, and feel kind of funny about it all, because I'm not one to like the spotlight on me (you can stop laughing).

Please head over to Canada Blog Friends and check out what they say and do. And please leave a little comment love for me while you're at it, if you don't mind. I'm feeling a little deflated these days, what with having to possibly shower more than once a week if I actually get one of these jobs I've been interviewing for, and what with having the wonderful endoscopy/colonoscopy procedure to look forward to.

Thanks to Rob Campbell too, for liking me and my blog enough to actually give me the time of day. You rock, Rob!

I need to go clean a drool spot off my blazer sleeve now, in preparation for my next interview. Tata for now!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

I'm A Contendah

It's been a bit of a crazy few days, what with Mother's Day, exams and job interviews coming out my ears.

The weekend began with a sad message from Mr. Handsome's sister, who told us their beloved dog, Laker, had passed away. He was 12 years old, a pretty German Shepherd, and apparently his stomach had somehow inverted and he died. So sad. He was getting old, but it's always very sad when your pet passes away. We'd spent many holidays and long weekends with Laker, and we're going to miss him, especially Gryphon, who loved his cousin and still expects to see him. The cottage, where he spent all his summers, and the lake, after whom he was named, will miss him too.

I had multiple government exams all day Saturday, which isn't really the way anyone wants to spend a Saturday, as you could tell by the grimaces and groans as person upon person filed in, like cattle. I was so flustered that I left my insulated coffee cup on top of the car, and my cell phone at home, and that's after remembering to make sure I took it with me. That is how my day began.

The rest of the day was better, although some of the exams were damn difficult. At one point, I'm sure I uttered, "For Christ's sake," out loud more than once, because really, how many times can a person be asked to figure out which day falls before the third week of the tenth month after the second month with three holidays, which does not have either a "I" or a "U" in it? Yeah, exactly. Really. As if that would ever be anywhere in the realm of what I'd really be doing in the job. And if it was, I wouldn't last too long. My point being, why bother ...

My French language testing back in April apparently went well. I got my results, and received the equivalent of an A. Not so shabby (I just said that with a hard Jewish accent), especially with a raging migraine and nausea on board when I had taken the damn exam.

And then, I just had an interview on Monday for a real live job, and you know what, guys? I have a really good feeling about it. I should know today or tomorrow whether or not I am the lucky recipient of a regular cheque for the foreseeable future. I can see myself now, at my little cubicle, with my little coffeemaker in the corner, coffee percolating in the morning as I work away like a little busy bee. I'm quite excited about the prospect, and very nervous about the Big Unknown.

I have another interview today for a part-time, lesser-paying job, but a job all the same. As I tell myself all the time, "Poodle," I say, "it's not over 'til the fat lady sings." Whatever that means. Does anyone know? Because I'd really like to know.

And then, as if Simon Cowell looked down on me and proclaimed me to be the next world singing sensation (I've been hearing angels with heavy British accents singing to me all week), I got two more interviews this week! Who knew?! All four of the interviews this week are for medical establishments, which blows me away because I have no medical experience. Well, not professionally anyway.

Maybe these guys are all psychic, and know that I have visited pretty much every single hospital department there is, and even some that don't exist (except in my head). I am so well versed in all things medical, in fact, that I could probably cut someone open, take out their spleen, replace it with a homemade baggy filled with red gel, and close 'er up, and the patient would never know the difference.

You could say I'm an anomaly, in any sense of the word.

Anyway, like I said, crazy week, lots of schtuff to swill around in my mouth before I spit out something that makes some sense.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

It's My Turn

It's always a great Mother's Day here. Mr. Handsome and the kids make sure of it every year. But this year, I was less than happy, and I even cried. Par for the course for me these past few months. Crying jags for no reason. If I didn't know better, I would think I am either pregnant and full of raging hormones, or an angst-ridden teen. Of course, I am neither. I'm just sad.

Every year, I get a wonderful breakfast, full of fresh fruit, omelette, coffee or tea, and lots of love. The kids make me lovely gifts, Mr. Handsome gets me beautiful flowers, and I love being enveloped in all that love. A lazy day ensues, sometimes doing nothing but reading books and hanging out, most times visiting the Canada Tulip Festival and enjoying the amazing spring breezes and music that greets your ears as you walk. A feast for the senses. We often end up getting fudge at the festival, and we eat it all, out of the little paper bags it comes in. And then we go home, have a wonderful dinner that Mr. Handsome prepares, and we bask in the light that is our family.

We didn't go to the festival this year. It was bloody cold, cold enough for us to pull out our winter coats, and in the end, no one really wanted to leave the warm, cotton comfort of our home. So, we stayed indoors and played on the Wii, and read the newspaper, and stirred the big pot of chili Mr. Handsome had on the stove all day long.

Despite it all, I had many crying jags this Mother's Day, away from my family, hidden in my bedroom. My daughter's harsh tongue started it. And I know my daughter doesn't mean any of it when she lashes out at me and says the nasty things she says, but it still hurts. Bad. Her emotional range is as bad as mine, and probably worse. Being 14 years old is hard stuff.

So is feeling like you've done nothing much with your life. And here I am, at 46 years of age, dangling between working as a writer again, or working at the nearest Tim Horton's. Because, goddammit, enough is enough with being a parasite on this family. Although Mr. Handsome keeps telling me I am anything but. But that is how I feel, and there's no denying it.

I start the swirling whirling downdowndown in my mind, where I go quite often these days, and start feeling all those bad feelings about what a bad mother I am, even though I know I'm not. But when you are told this over and over again, through much of your life, it kind of gets stuck in your craw and rears its ugly head when you least expect it.

Then, my mind went to times with my own mother, who
passed away in March. I did not have a "normal" relationship with my mother, and for the most part, it was pretty awful. And as I thought about it, and about how I haven't really been terribly sad about her passing, I got much more melancholy, feeling guilty about my lack of feelings, feeling awful about the finality of death, and wishing it wasn't so, because I wasn't ready for the fact that having a relationship with her will never happen. Ever.

I had thought that I had resolved my feelings over our relationship, and that I was okay with it all. I believed that I had gone through the grieving process ten years ago, because that is when I decided I could no longer have a reasonable relationship with her. It took a long time for me to feel okay about it, and although it wasn't a perfect solution, it was much better this way.

But apparently not. Apparently it was far from resolved. Because when I least expect it, thoughts of my mother pop up, and the feelings well up in my chest, and I feel like I'm going to explode. I have split-second moments of these feelings, and a sudden feeling of utter fear, and then I'm okay again for awhile.

Mr. Handsome's youngest sister called on Sunday. She lives in western Canada, far from family, and she wanted to call and say hi, and wish me a Happy Mother's Day. Very thoughtful. Our hour-long talk finally wound its way around to my mother, and I told her how I was feeling, and how I felt rather helpless about it all.

And she had something very wise to say. Something that made so much sense to me. She told me that I can now make the relationship with my mother into what I want, not what I was forced to have for most of my life. I can now treat my mother with the respect, the dignity, the love I've always had for her, but was never allowed to give her. Because everytime I tried, I was shot down, and reminded that I was nothing but "a piece of dirt", as she so often told me.

But now ... Now I can be in control, and talk to her, and let her know that I am sorry for the life we had together, and how I wish it would have been so different, and that I always loved her, and always will love her, and that I forgave her many years ago for everything, but that she never forgave herself, and didn't know how to love, and that was the crux of the problem.

My arms are now free to hug my mother, and to give her gifts of love, without the fear of knowing that my gifts will be rejected. I don't need my armored wall anymore. Because now it's my turn.

Monday, May 11, 2009

A Flood Of Flowers And Love


No words can express...

... the absolute beauty of a flower.

My house was inundated with beauty this Mother's Day.

As my heart was filled with love.

Friday, May 8, 2009

A Mother's Day Sojourn

My weekend is a study in extremes.

Saturday will be spent indoors, being tested yet again by the federal government peeps. Yes, I actually passed my second language French testing a couple of weeks back, and now I go in for an entire day of flotsam and jetsam. I have to admit I'm quite proud of myself, because I really wasn't 100 per cent sure that I would get the level they required to move on. And I did it without any cheating! See, all the little children? Miracles still do happen.

I'm not bitter about having to go in for more tests, except that perhaps I wish Saturday's weather forecast called for hail and rain and pestilence instead of simply a possibility of a bit of rain, and perhaps I wish I wouldn't get so stressed out about such things as silly tests. But I think this testing segment will be better than the last since it is all in English, I now know I need to bring food and drink because they lie when they tell you there are open food concessions, and I think I know which building to go into this time. So, all in all, I can't complain. Especially if this leads to a job. Although Mr. Handsome, being the absolutely most positive and optimistic human being there is on earth (can you hear the sarcasm in my voice?), has reminded me that this means nothing in the grand scheme of things because they've probably got 1,000 others who have reached this level, and what are the chances that I will be one of the chosen ones. Isn't he precious?

Anyway, moving on.

Sunday I so look forward to, because Sunday is Mother's Day, and I've always loved Mother's Day. Almost as much as I love Christmas, which is an awful lot. Because on Mother's Day, my children and my husband make the extra effort to let me know they don't take me for granted. They make the extra effort to make it a day just for me. And, I feel special, which is a rare occurrence for me, to be honest.

I usually have a wonderful breakfast made for me by Mr. Handsome and the children, and then we usually check out the tulips at the Canadian Tulip Festival, because that's what I want to do. Although, this Sunday, I think they're calling for more rain, so chances are we'll just stick around the house and do absolutely nothing, which is fine by me. And then, Mr. Handsome makes an amazing dinner and invites his mother over, and we feel like queens for a day.

Although I wish I could say this is a photo of me, it isn't. I never tilt my head to the right.

The only thing better than this day would be if it could last a week.

But really, I can't complain, I know. I mean, most of my friends' husbands don't even acknowledge their existence most days, and their children make barely any discernible movement toward showing them their love, even on this day. I don't get it, but then again, maybe I'm just really lucky.

So, instead, I will bask in the warmth that is my Mother's Day, and just be glad the government testing is over for now and I can lie on the couch, eat Cheetos all day if I want, and pick my nose. Because that, to me, is the best way to spend Mother's Day.


Tiny little update: I got a call for my first, honest to god job interview on Monday! Let's hope I don't have a case of the runs, although this job is with a medical establishment of sorts, so I'm sure they'd understand if I had to excuse myself to purge my Mother's Day din dins.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Happy Season

Spring has sprung in our lovely city. One of my favourite times of the year, besides Happy Hour.

One of our first tulips in our front yard. Most neighbours' flowers have been up for awhile. Our tulips are developmentally challenged.

I'll be heading to the Canada Tulip Festival soon, I'm thinking. Because their tulips are amazing.

Not sure what these are. Daisies, perhaps? Any garden gnomes out there have any ideas? Anyone? Buehler?

The muted, hazy colours caught my eye as I walked Gryphon at the local dog park. Of course, he was too busy sniffing another dog's crotch at the time to notice and share in the joy with me.

Bloom bokeh.

Dogwood blossoms in my front yard. Awesomeness.

This dogwood bush used to be huge. Now it is a mere ragged bush. This is what happens when you ask Mr. Handsome to trim the bushes.

Tree seeds. When I took this picture, I didn't notice the little purple dots. I love my camera.

A flaming yellow bush at the Experimental Farm, our farm in the middle of the city.

Out of death comes new life.

These trees glowed, beckoning me. Unfortunately, I don't do water.

Can you tell I love spring?

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Cool Pride, Warm Memories

We walk into the school, hand in hand, I to the office to do some volunteer work, Dee to his classroom to begin his day.

We pass a scrum of little boys and girls in Grade One, all sitting against the wall, their colourful lunchboxes clanging against the floor as they wait to be told what to do next.

Suddenly, one, two, then all of them, begin saying, "Hi Dee! Hi Dee!" in adorable, lilting, happy voices.
And then, one little voice says, "Dee, you're so cool."

I look over at Dee, who is grinning from ear to ear. I smile, proud of my little boy. And I think, cool? My son? When did this happen? Just yesterday, he was one of these little ones. And now, he is the one they look up to.

"Yeah, I watch them at lunchtime. They really like me," he explains.

They sure do, I think to myself, so proud of him, and yet so sad that he's growing up, becoming himself, and needing me less and less. But his hand still fits perfectly in mine. And always will.


Em is spending this entire week at a mini-enrichment course at Carleton University. She was chosen, along with a few other students at her school, to participate, which makes her parents kind of proud. She's worked hard this year, tries her best to get good marks, and deserves this.

She and I went to the campus Sunday for orientation, and as we tried to find parking in the throngs of traffic, Em seemed anxious.

"But, do you know where you're going? Will we make it in time? Are we lost? Do you know where we go? We're late, Mommy."

The unknown affects Em deeply. She needs to know. Everything. Schedules and routines are very important to this child-cum-young woman. And when she is thrown into the unknown, her insecurities come out full force, and she is unable to keep it under control.

She becomes a child again. She takes my hand in hers because it helps ground her.

Once we were safely ensconced in the classroom, Em relaxed a bit, and I saw the tiny, frightened child in her get buried once again behind the feeble cover of security and maturity. Whereas a few moments earlier, I was her rock, her security, I was again just her mom, the person who embarrasses her an awful lot and gets on her nerves these days.

Later that night, she seemed anxious again, trying to remember her way around the maze of the campus, and not being able to, she came to me for support and confirmation that all would be fine.

My little girl, trying so hard to be grown up, and finding out it's not really all that simple and easy. No matter how much I bother her, and how often she rolls her eyes at me, she'll always be my little girl, my first child, and I will always be her rock. And that, to me, means the world.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

How About Some Kielbasa Up The Poopshoot?

Well, guys, it's worse than I thought it could ever be. It's so bad, I had to pre-empt my previously scheduled post for today. Yeah, I know. Reeal baaad.

Yesterday, I went for my appointment with a new gastroenterologist to try and figure out what has been plaguing me all these years and making me lose all sorts of weight, and be a
Type 7 most of the time.

First things first. This doctor = awesome. I was worried he might be kind of weird, since who really decides to work on people's asses and intestinal inner workings? No one in their right mind, that's who. But this doctor, he was okay.

Really thorough, really smart, but I honestly think he's on Quaaludes or whatever those things are that make you hyper (are Quaaludes uppers or downers?). The guy reminded me of Speedy Gonzales, or the Roadrunner. Wiiiiiing!!! Swoooosh! One moment, he's here, the next, he's gone. I need whatever he has. And yesterday please and thanks.

I realize this guy is of African-American descent, but he's all I could find in such short notice. My doc is Asian-Canadian. Close enough, no?

He asked lots of questions, touched me all over, breathed down my neck, and then told me I have to have an endoscopy. Didn't I tell you? I knew it, didn't I. See Monday's post here for more on that schlep.

And, I have to have a colonoscopy.

Pardon? Whaazzat?

After I came to, I realized the doctor's words were echoing in my ears, like we were in a time travel tunnel, kind of like the Six Million Dollar Man when he brings out all his bionics, and there's that weird echo sound that reverberates through the television speakers. Cccccolonnnnossscccccopppppyyyyyy.

He quickly explained what he would be doing when he was inside my ass.

That's right. Just when you thought an endoscopy was enough, nay, the gods from above thought it would be right funny to also scope out my lower intestine.

The plan is that Dr. Quaalude is going to first do the endoscopy, zooming the camera tube down my maw and taking little pieces of tissue from here, there and everywhere. And then, when I think it's all done, he's going to turn me over and take another tube and go up my poopshoot, my bunghole, my schlemiel.

Guys, the bum hole wasn't made for such invasion.

And does this mean I need to shave? Because if it does, I am so screwed.

What am I going to do?

I asked if I could be drugged to the point of utter unconsciousness, and the doctor smiled and then said no. He explained that wasn't possible because they needed me partially awake, because otherwise I'd have to be intubated, which I don't see as such a bad thing, because as I see it, they're stuffing me full of tubes anyway, what's one more? But he didn't agree.

So, instead, they're going to give me a double dose of "sedation" as they put it, because I am having both procedures done consecutively. Apparently, this medication also helps you forget everything, so I'm hoping they're right, because if they're not, I might cry. In fact, I know I will. And I don't want something that will make me forget. I want something to totally confuse the hell out of me so that I don't even know my name before I go in for the procedure. I'm not too concerned about the after. Call me crazy.

I also asked if Mr. Handsome could come in with me, and they were pretty evasive about it, so I know what that means. It means no.

I'm going to keep working on that though, because I think if I have to go through this, Mr. Handsome should experience it with me. Kind of like the whole childbirth idea. Are you with me on this?

The day before the test will be most enjoyable too, folks. Because that day, I'm not allowed to eat anything. Not even a waffle. No milk in my tea or coffee. And I have to take a special little pill twice that day that is going to make me poop all day long, so I've been advised to stick close to a toilet, and bring a good magazine along.

And if you think that's fun ... I also have to supply three poop samples. Oh, I can hardly wait. May is a great and wonderful month.

Excuse me while I run to my cardiologist for a quick check-up. I seem to be having some arrhythmia.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Want Some Kielbasa?

I'm a little worried, a little scared, a little concerned, because who really wants a Polish sausage down their throat? Bet you don't get asked that question every day.

I'm off to my first appointment with a gastroenterologist this afternoon, to start trying to get to the bottom of my gastrointestinal malaises that have plagued me oh so much for what seems like three lifetimes, but is only really about five years. Maybe six. No more than eight. Tops.

Okay, so I've been very hesitant to get this thing investigated properly. Why? Well, it's not like it's a pimple on my cheek that needs a good squeeze, or an ingrown toenail that needs trimming, or even one of my many other ailments that are not so fun to have, and yet, not as bad as my tummy woes. This, folks, this is the real thing, the honker of illnesses, the kowabunga of killers. Because I know what the doctor is going to say, and this is what I dread. He is going to say I need a very invasive procedure called an
endoscopy, whereby they pass a flexible tube with a tiny camera on the end of it down my gullet and take a gander at my insides.

And this, folks, is where I die. I know this is what hell must be like.

I've been through a lot of stuff in my life: lots of surgeries, very invasive procedures (I'm talking big needles in the eyeball, guys), even the camera up the poop shoot. But nothing really compares to the endoscopy, unless, of course, we're talking about the lower GI endoscopy, which is where they thread the camera up your butthole, in which case, I really shouldn't complain. What I should be talking about is that test, but really, you might faint if I start describing it, it's that awful, so I won't.

And that is why I decided instead to discuss said upper GI endoscopy, because it is just as invasive, and yet, not quite as unpleasant when being described. You're welcome.

I know the doctor today is going to tell me I need this because I've already gone to another specialist for this same reason, and that is what he told me. And you know what, guys? I freaked out, my rectum started twitching, and I ran home like a scared puppy dog with my tail between my legs.

I've had this test done once before, when I was actually in the hospital, having had a major attack where I was doubled over in pain, screaming, "I'm gonna die! I'm gonna die!" as the firefighters (oh my god, they were hot, and too bad I looked like complete crap), and then these two butchy female paramedics arrived and told me to be quiet (actually, they demanded I be quiet) as they loaded me into the ambulance and took me to the hospital, where I stayed for a week. And in that time, I had my first endoscopy, which I really didn't appreciate. The doctor didn't want to knock me out, and I'm pretty sure he laughed in my face when said knocking out was requested.

I remember lying on the table, and a nurse hooked me up to all sorts of monitors, and I could hear her say to the doctor, "Umm, she's really tachy, doc," which I think means my heart was going kind of wonky, with all these extra beats, and it was going really fast. She sounded pretty worried. And the doctor said, in all his wiseness, "Yeah, yeah, she's okay," and told me to open my mouth and swallow the mother of all tubes with camera attached.

You have not choked until you've had one these babies shoved down your throat. And somehow, you're supposed to continue breathing through all of this, as they fiddle around with said camera tube, and jiggle it to and fro to get it to go into all your intestinal nooks and crannies. Just imagine a huge kielbasa being forcefully pushed down your maw. Now you begin to get the idea.

This is a kielbasa, also known as a Polish sausage. I know what you're thinking.

Of course, I don't remember much of it. They had to give me some giggly juice before we went in because I was so nervous, and I think I passed out right after I swallowed.

Anyway, as you can see, it wasn't a pleasant experience, and I shudder to this day when I think about it. And that happened 10 years ago.

I'll let you all know what Dr. I-Want-To-See-You-Dry-Heave says, but I'm pretty darn sure I just told you. Excuse me while I go feel sorry for myself.

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