Thursday, November 15, 2012

High 5

This post brought to you by Mama Kat's Pretty Much World Famous Writer's Workshop and Prompt #3:

List 5 Things that Bring You Comfort

I love lists
I really do
I could make lists all day long

Lists like:

To Do
To Buy
Gift Ideas
Get Rich Quick Schemes
Cards I Need to Buy 
Books I Want to Read
Places I Want to Visit
Laws I'd Like to See Passed
Laws I want Repealed
Possible Careers
Plot Ideas for my (Fake) Movie
Cast Ideas for my (Fake) Movie
Possible Pen Names
People I think would be fun to have as our POTUS

I like list so much that sometimes, I'll make a list of thing I've already done just for the sake of making a list.......and crossing things off so I have a sense of accomplishment

I  make the best list when I'm in the shower or driving
Which means I have no pen, no paper and that I'll forget the list by the time I remember to write the list.......I bet I've lost millions of dollars as a direct result of this

Today, a new list: 5 Things That Bring Me Comfort

Things - not people, not places, but things

And given I'm a pretty literal kind of girl, thing is

  • object: an inanimate object
  • unspecified item: an unnamed or unspecified object
  • occurrence: something that occurs, or something that is done

  • I find comfort in my 10+ year old grey sweatshirt...think Jennifer's my woobie
    I wore it when I was really fat, after I lost all me weight, all through my pregnancy and still wear it to this day
    I wear it around the house, to bed and yes, I've even worn it in public
    I love my grey sweatshirt and its worth all the heckles and comments from my siblings and husband
    It's comfortable
    It knows me
    It appreciates me
    It's forgiven me for the food and drink I've spilled on it, the bodily fluids its been covered in (Lucy's) and think I may have even thrown up on it myself
    It's lasted longer than any relationship I've ever had with a man....including my husband
    My grey sweatshirt brings me the comfort of a hug

    I find great comfort in Mass
    As I've said before, I go for me
    Not for anyone else 
    Not because I was raised to go to Mass
    Not because I'm, trying to impress anyone
    Not because I'm trying to secure a spot in heaven
    Not because someone told me I have to go
    I go to Mass because it grounds me
    It restores in me humility, fortitude, patience, love, and acceptance
    The music soothes me, the readings inspire me and the homilies challenge me
    Mass, prayers,'s been a bigger comfort than I ever thought it could be

    I find great comfort in the law
    I like knowing there are laws to govern our land - saves us from Chaos
    This is not to say the people making the laws, passing the laws, enforcing the laws are necessarily a comfort
    But the laws themselves, the rules, even the ones I may not necessairly agree with, are comforting
    And just because I like laws and rules does not mean I can;t think for myself
    It does not mean I'm a sheep
    It does not mean I am against free will
    It means I find comfort in order
    It means that I find comfort in knowing that there is a certain level of respect being afforded to all of us
    And it means we're all on even footing because the laws, like it or not, apply to all of us regardless of anything or anyone

    I find comfort in writing, music, and art
    Books, poems, songs, stories, portraits, paintings, letters, jokes, editorials, letters to the editor, diary entries, scripts
    Without words, we'd have no history, no future, no Harry Potter, no Shel Silerstein, no US Weekly
    Without words, you'd never have known about the time I had a moth caught in my bra and I thought I was having a heart attack, or about the time I went to work with my pants on backwards, or how Lucy took comfort in knowing Jet is in the stars with Mufasa
    Without music, there would be no dancing with Lucy, no hearing her sing, no singing with her
    Without music, there would be no John Williams, no Tears for Fears, be no loving a rainy night thanks to Eddie Rabbit
    And where would The Gambler be but on a train bound for no where....
    Without art, we'd never know Mona Lisa has a secret or how beautiful a Starry Starry Night is and we would have missed the Cornonation of Napoleon
    Without the arts, all the arts, the world would be a bit duller, a bit darker and a whole lot less entertaining
    No movies to get lost in, no books to travel in, no songs to commemorate that special day, no photos to capture the love in a mother's eyes for her child

    Lastly, I take comfort in this unspecified, unnamed thing, this object I can't quite identify....
    I think it's a role I play...
    Sean's wife
    Lucy's mother
    My parent's daughter
    Sister to my brother and sisters
    Aunt to my nieces and nephews
    A daughter-in-law, a sister-in-law, a cousin
    A friend to people who have chosen me to be a part of their life
    I take great comfort in knowing there is a purpose to my life - a purpose that though I may sometimes lose sight of always shows itself when I need it most
    I take comfort in knowing that I'm needed, and knowing I need others as much as they need me
    I find comfort in giving love, hugs, kisses and band aids whenever any of it is needed
    I find comfort in making other people smile, making them laugh, making them forget for a few minutes about their shit day or their sick Dad or their ailing sibling
    I take comfort in knowing that my bad day is just that, a day
    And tomorrow I have a chance to do it again
    And even if I don't,
    I find comfort in knowing the world is a better place because I was here long enough to give it Lucy

    And chocolate
    I find a whole lot of comfort in any form of chocolate

    Maria the Mum

    Thursday, November 8, 2012

    Boy Was My Face Red!

    From Mama Kat's Pretty Much World Famous World Famous Writer's Workshop

    5.) Share an embarrassing moment (these are always fun to read)

    I'm pretty sure my life is just one big embarrassing moment.....which means I don't get too embarrassed though I do from time to time feel badly for doing whatever it is I've done

    Like last week when I introduced a Mom at daycare to my husband and used the wrong name for her (I used the name of another Mom I met at the same time)
    She graciously corrected me and said don't worry, it happens all the time...
    Which I'm not sure how given that the other woman is Indian and she is not

    Then there was my very first job interview ever
    I stepped into the filled to capacity elevator and asked someone to press floor 15...I was going straight to the top!
    I decided to make small talk and said to the fellow next to me,

    You're headed to 15 too?
    Yes he sort of grunted
    Hope it’s not your job I'm interviewing for (har har har)
    Your skirt is caught in the door he replies
    What? I yell, Oh my God! Shit!!!

    Now instead of just giving the skirt a gentle tug, or possibly just letting it stay there, I drop two more expletives and nimbly slip out of my skirt and let it fall to the floor

    And by nimbly I mean yanking it down as fast as I could thereby ripping off the button while falling into the man beside (me whose job I had just threatened) because my shoe got caught in the skirt as I tried to yank it off

    He fell into the two men in very expensive suits next to him who pushed the woman next to them backwards who fell on top of the woman next to her who turned out to be the Director of the Center

    I did all this to avoid being pulled up off the elevator floor...which in hindsight I'm sure probably would not have happened

    I had to go through my interview with the top of my skirt rolled down into my underwear so it would not fall off and then, I was sent down the hall to take a competency test administered by the woman who was pushed by the two men into the Director
    Then, I had to go to HR and was paired up with the guy whose job I threatened

    I got the job and on my first day, during Orientation, the Director came in to address the class of recruits and she did a double take when she saw me in the third row

    At lunch, the class decided to all go out together
    We were standing at the elevator when the Director walked out with two other people

    She said hello to us and when the doors opened, we waited for her to get on the elevator before we moved

    Instead, Rita turned, looked at me and said

    I really think it would be best if you get in first......

    Then there was the time I rammed (accidentally) my grocery cart into a display of gravy jars which of course fell over breaking at least 7 jars....of maybe 10
    Gravy splattered everywhere and at least 6 or more jars rolled down the aisle
    When someone from the store came over, I blamed the kid who had just gone running out of the aisle laughing at me as I slipped through the gravy trying to hold up the rest of the display

    Another time, I farted in front of my co-workers (and by another time, I mean like two weeks ago) while I was imitating the way someone in our office comes bounding down the hallway

    And then there was the time I had just given birth to Lucy
    I invited a friend and her husband to come to the hospital to see me (which I don't remember doing, I was pretty out of it)
    At some point, I have no idea how, I accidentally flashed my friend's husband - he still can't look me in the eye
    I however have no recollection of it happening so I'm good

    Not too long ago, I wrote a heartfelt post about going to England and how much I enjoyed this one particular place....and I spelled the name of it wrong in my post....and published it......

    And here's why I was single for so long:

    One time, I went out with this guy like 3 times - and really liked him - I thought it was going well

    He lived in my apartment building in Naperville
    We met when he helped me with a bag I had dropped down three flights of stairs - nothing says Hey! Wanna go out with me?!? like a box of tampons, new underwear, a scale and a bag of snack size Snickers

    On our fourth date, I thought hmm, he really likes me - he laughs at my jokes, we like the same books and movies....this has potential

    After dinner, he walked me back to my car
    I thought he was going to come in for a kiss but instead he says

    I'm not so sure I want to keep seeing you

    Oh, okay....I say and just sort of trailed off because really, what was I supposed to say

    Look, you make me laugh, you are fun to be with and it doesn't even bother me our politics are way different......well, it’s just that we've been on 4 dates and had at least a dozen phone conversations and you're still calling me by the wrong name and when I correct you, you still call me by the wrong name

    Wait what? You're name isn't Tom?

    No, it's Noel

    Oooohhh, I thought you were saying No well....I wondered why you kept saying No, well after I said something but then never followed up with anything...
    Like I was waiting for you to make your point about No well what...... but you never did -
    So your name is Noel?
    Shit...who's Tom?
    Why was I calling you Tom?

    I have no idea

    It's not your last name?

    Uhh, no

    Oh shit, well  look, I am so sorry..... maybe someday we can laugh about this?

    No I don't think so...I think it just means you aren't a good listener....and that's sort of important to me

    True - fair point - you're right.....
    Are you sure your name isn't Tom?


    No well what?

    Maria the Mum

    Wednesday, November 7, 2012


    Wrote this last week, never posted...
    Friday, November 2:

    Miss Barbara, Lucy's teacher, is on vacation
    She left today for Aruba

    Barbara has been telling the class she is going on vacation and will be gone today and next week in an effort to prep them for her absence

    Lucy is terribly fond of Miss Barbara and I'm not sure how the week will play out.......

    Especially after this conversation in the car on the way home last night:

    How was your day Luce?

    I hear her exhale and adjust my mirror so I can see her
    She is looking out the window and sort has her bottom lip poked out as one does after they've exhaled a deep sigh of...defeat....

    Well Mama, Miss Barbara is leaving me tomorrow, how do you think that made my day?

    I coughed to cover up my laugh and said

    You mean for vacation?

    Yeah Mama, for vacation!

    Well, Miss Danielle will still be there and Miss Barbara told me Miss Sarah will be helping out - and you met Miss Sarah this week...she's nice yeah?

    Yeah Mama, Miss Sarah is nice and I like Miss Danielle.....

    She pauses for a moment and looks in my direction, makes eye contact and raises her arms and says

    But they just aren't Miss Barbara....and what if Miss Barbara likes vacation and Aruba so much she never come back to me?!?!??

    Oh honey, she'll come back.....

    Why did she go on vacation?

    Vacation, Lucy, is when people take a break from their job or from school to rest and relax so when they come back, they have lots of energy and feel good

    Oh, Miss Barbara needs to relax?

    She does honey, she just needs to relax and get some rest

    But Mama, she does yoga….’member she showed me how to do yoga? That’s how you relax…with a yoga breath!

    Well, sometimes Lucy, people need more than yoga…they need more of a rest

    'Cause I make her crazy Mama?

    At this I did laugh aloud

    No honey, you don't make Miss Barbara crazy! She loves you very much

    Mama, you love me and you told me the other day I was makin' you crazy........Mama, you can make me crazy, can I get a vacation from you?


    And if I do go on vacation, can I take Miss Barbara and you and Daddy just go somewhere else? I don't want her to miss me while I on vacation like I'm gonna miss her on vacation - when you miss someone, it hurts

    Umm….wouldn't you miss me and Daddy?

    No Mama! You two are making me crazy!

    We are?

    I don't know Mama! I just said that 'casuse I miss Barbara so much!

    She threw her head back in her seat and closed her eyes

    Honey, we just left Miss Barbara.....she's not even gone yet....and when you said good bye you sort of dashed didn't even give her a proper good bye

    I didn't want to make a scene Mama!!!!

    How I don't drive off the road sometimes amazes me...and where she gets this stuff amazes me even more

    We pulled up to the house and Lucy informed me if we could go see Hobson (the neighbor's cat we've been cat sitting) she'd feel better

    As we walked across the Circle, Lucy tugged my hand


    Yes Lucy

    You're not making me crazy

    I'm not?

    No Mama - I sorry I said that

    Is Daddy making you crazy?

    No Mama.......I just said that 'cause I think I'm really going to miss Miss Barbara and I'm going to be sad

    We stopped and I knelt down in front of her

    I'll miss Barbara too Lucy

    Yeah....she sort of swung side to side

    Come on Luce, let's go feed Hobson

    We started back off across the Circle with Lucy sort of skipping along and me waiting for her to fall

    She stopped in her tracks, turned around and yelled out to me

    You know what would make me not be sad Mama?

    What's that honey?

    If we got a dog.......

    Maria the Mum

    Oh Lucy

    A few nights ago, as I was putting Lucy to be, she snuggled up against me and I said
    I love you Luce Goose
    I love you too Mama
    Well I love you three!
    She giggled and said
    I love you four!
    I love you five! I shot back
    Mama I love you SIX!
    She giggled again
    We made it to I love you 15 (me) without any problems when she hesitated
    Mama, I love you .....Mama, I forget, what comes next but whatever it is, I love you that much!

    Last week, at bed time, I told her to close her little eyes
    She turned, looked at me and said with a hint of a challenge in the balance
    Close your big eyes and I'll close my little eyes

    I was in a rush the other night, as I often am, and knocked over the bowl of vegetables I had just made for Lucy's dinner
    Lucy rushed over to see what all the noise and my expletives were about
    Mama, you OK?
    I am honey, I just knocked over a bowl
    That one Mama? she asked pointing to the floor
    Yeas honey, that one
    Was that my broccoli and cauliflower for my dinner?
    Yes honey, it was
    Ohh, well......that's disappointing......

    Lucy was a tiger for Halloween
    At one point, I said something to her about looking like Tigger
    She corrected me
    Mama, I'm not Tigger, I'm a tiger, a Bengal tiger
    Sorry Luce!
    Just don't call me Tigger Mama! I'm a BENGAL TIGER!!
    On Halloween, a couple we know came down with their kids to Trick or Treat
    Jay said something to Lucy about her looking like Tigger
    I said to him don't call her Tigger, she's so not Tigger....
    She's not Tigger?
    Nope - she's a Tiger - not a Tigger - like a Siberian tiger or something....
    Aren't those the white ones? he asked
    I don't know....I can never remember......just don't call her Tigger!
    When I was putting her to bed that night, Lucy says to me
    Oh Mama, by the way...
    Yes Lucy?
    Mama, you told your friend I was a Siberian Tiger...and I wasn't.....
    You weren't?
    She put her hand on her hip and said to me in quite an exasperated tone
    Mama! Siberian Tigers are white, was I white? No I was ORANGE......I was a Bengal Tiger!
    Oh, sorry Luce, how come you didn't tell Jay that?
    I didn't want to make you look bad Mama.....

    Maria the Mum