...for a different kind of girl

silent surburban girl releasing her voice, not yet knowing what all she wants to say about her life and the things that make it spin. do you have to be 18 to be here? you'll know when i know.

Monday, February 28, 2011

so, that was awkward, huh?

And I'm not just talking about the Oscars, though hoo boy, THAT was three and a half hours of WTF, am I right?!

No, I'm talking about my last post, in which I sort of hinted at kinks in the armor that is my marriage, and then went away for a couple weeks, leaving it to hang there. I've returned a few times since posting that, wanting to flick the offending creature away, but I'd end up staring at the words and thinking of all the things I want to say, but that I don't feel like putting up in a post because, even though we're all nice people (seriously, you all are some truly nice people), we all also know the internet is like that high school upperclassman who, even though you did absolutely nothing to them, likes to torment you for having the audacity to be alive. I like being alive. I do not like the idea of my 'woah is me' words being used against me by someone who doesn't know me. I've gone this long having a blog without that happening, and I'd like to keep it that way.

But I will say yes, things here suck. My marriage is not good right now, and if I were to tell you just how long it's not been good, I'd be embarrassed. And sad. Mostly sad, which is truly how I feel most days, but you don't know that because I go about said days as the "I'm good, how are you?" girl. Here, let me put an exclamation point at the end of everything I say because everything! in! my! world! is! amazing! "You're the funniest person I know," my friends often tell me, and I'm inclined to scream "You clearly don't know enough people!" because I don't feel funny, not even in the slightest. Not even now when I'm going to tell you that over the last two weeks, I've given some thought to what music video might better describe the state of my union than the two posted previously, and I've settled on this one:

Total Eclipse of the Heart. Yep. That's what my marriage feels like right now. A humongous, over the top, angsty mess, but minus the ninjas (also minus the kids with the glowing eyes, but really, who's to say those aren't adequate representations of my own children, or, at the very least, what I remember feeling like growing up as the child of two people who didn't seem to get along for a very long time).

Of course, there's a good chance I'm missing the bigger picture of this song. Sure, one could say it's all about the complexity of love, and isn't that sweet, but then there's this part where, oh yes, every now and then I get a little bit tired of listening to the sound of my tears. I get a little bit angry...a little bit terrified. Over there is a powder keg and yep, look at that! It's giving off sparks! And guess what? I am falling apart.

Good times.

I'm not purposely trying to make light of this situation. There's nothing light about it. This is the curse of being the 'I'm good!' girl.

But I'm not, and so I guess I have to start acting like it.

Monday, February 14, 2011

yer singin' my song, mister

The song that came screaming out of the speakers of my car radio today as I left for work on this glorious Valentine's Day was this:

"Our Love's In Jeopardy" by Greg Kihn Band. Oh, Greg Kihn, I don't know how you did it. I don't know how you traveled to the future, then went back to the heady days of the 80s and penned this ode, but it's almost as though you formed the rhythm from the beating of my heart and penned the lyrics by taking the unspoken words in my brain and wove them in such a way you had no choice but to come up with this hit. I can't imagine a better, truly more ironic song to have started my Valentine's Day.

Except maybe this:

(special thanks to my pal TwoBusy for the following label...)


Wednesday, February 09, 2011

like you're less than...

I was at my oldest son's basketball game last night when a group of his classmates, fellow ball players fueled by an earlier victory, sat down a few seats away from me. Lanky boys armed with cell phones or wired to iPods, it didn't take long for their collective attention to turn from the action on various tiny screens and the court to the cluster of cheerleaders next to them who were exuding school spirit for the home team. The squad, by no means the stylized visions of professional cheerleaders, included various individuals clearly trying to fill in the awkward uniform of teenagerhood.

At some point between foul shots, the two groups developed a slightly casual, seemingly harmless bantering in a fashion I can recall between teenage boys and girls. The boys began making up their own cheers for our team, and the girls laughed at their attempts. I found it all rather charming.

When the buzzer signaled halftime, the girls pranced out to the middle of the court and took a formation that made it clear they we're going to attempt a pyramid lift. Anchors were spotted, squats were taken, and the girl designated to peak the formation was lifted into place. The boys began making remarks about it all, and then, over their laughter, I heard one say, "Watch it there, Thunder Thighs. You wouldn't want to kill someone under you!"

His words were met with whoops among his peers. Some of the laughter seemed genuine, some of it I hope was just the reaction of those who didn't know how else to respond, so they did what they felt would allow them continued acceptance in the fold. As for me, I wanted to come off my chair and go after them for their thoughtlessness. I was seething as I looked out at the girls, each as gangly as the boys, each as athletic in their own way.

But not one of them overweight.

I prayed none of the girls heard the boy's words and the others' reactions. I prayed that because I was that girl who had thoughtless words lobbed at her. I was that girl referred to as a 'blow up doll,' 'fat bitch,' and others far more cruel by thoughtless boys while in school. Their words, combined with others from my mother, family members, other classmates, even strangers, made me hate myself for an incredibly long time, and in that immediate moment last night, I didn't want any of those girls to feel such a degree of self-hatred simply because another person chose to be senselessly cruel. I don't want any of those girls to be 43 years old one day and still remember hateful words lobbed at them when they were 14. I do. I remember every word, every time they were said, and even though I like to tell myself they mean nothing, they do. In their own way, they do. I was seated in a corner of the gym last night, secluded from other parents and fans, because when I walked in just moments before my son's game started, I didn't want to draw attention to myself, didn't want to clumsily engage someone in conversation and come off sounding stupid. I do this sometimes, even now, because of words said to me when I was the same age as the kids around me last night. To be called fat, to me, is to be made to feel worthless, unworthy, stupid. I opt to stay quiet and hidden more often than not, and honestly, I would hate that for the girls on that cheer squad. I hate it for me.

I hate that I let my own voice join the chorus of detractors around me, compelling me to take them to heart and feed my pain. I've seen pictures of myself from when I was a 13-14 year old girl, and I absolutely wasn't overweight, but as time went on, I grew increasingly unhealthy, and I struggle even now not to degrade myself when I look in a mirror or slip into a pair of jeans. It's not every day, of course, but there are days still when I do think of how I used to imagine physically slicing away at my thighs, hips and stomach to rid myself of the pain I was putting on myself, and it's all because of a few stupid words someone said to me, and that I eventually said to myself.

Of course, I am not so naive to think none of us makes hasty, uninformed decisions about a person based solely on their appearance. We do it every day. If you haven't yet, no doubt you will. So will I. But I try very hard not to. I know adolescence is an awkward time, but it's disgusting and disheartening to realize people can still be disparaged by another for something so grossly untrue.


Sunday, February 06, 2011

i just realized i'm writing about similiar things two posts in a row. this is my life, friends.

Things you might want to wake up to on a Saturday morning:
Sounds good, right? Hell, even waking up with a stranger's arms in your bed wouldn't be all that bad if you could easily prove you weren't a party to the detachment of said appendages. If I could get a good night's sleep, those are exactly the kinds of things I would dream about waking up to.

Here's a taste of what I woke up to Saturday morning:
  • my youngest son screaming
  • my youngest son screaming the following - "HE FARTED ON MY CEREAL!!!"
Friends, you cannot come back from that. You cannot do anything but pull the blankets over your head and pray for divine intervention to help you get through the day before you've even set foot upon the floor to get it started. You cannot help but either stand in your shower and hope the water pelting your skin drowns out the sound of your tears, or count to 10 on a continuous loop to regain your composure as you come downstairs to the tears and apathy of those you live with.

It's been a long weekend around here.

The only saving grace in this whole tragedy? The kids were eating Froot Loops. Thank heaven this didn't occur over a bowl (or 'bowel')(but I figured why go for the cheap joke) of high fiber cereal.


Wednesday, February 02, 2011

betty draper would have fixed them with a steely glare and sent them to bed without dinner

Last night around the dinner table with my sons:

"Was this something pre-made?"

"You saw me standing at the oven cooking this meal not 20 minutes ago!"

"These noodles taste weird."

"These noodles taste like dirt. Are these noodles supposed to taste like dirt?"

"These noodles do not taste either weird or like dirt. These noodles taste fine."

"I'm thinking they taste weird."

"They're quick cooking noodles. That might have something to do with the flavor. They're fine. Let's just eat, OK?"

"I take it the corn is quick cooking corn then, too?"



"NO. It's just corn! Let's eat, OK?"

"That reminds me. When I woke up this morning, that hangy down thing in the back of your throat was numb."

"In my throat?"


"My throat was fine."

"My throat!"


"It's not now, though."

"That's good. You should be able to eat without any problems then!"

"It was, though. It was weird."


-- 45 seconds of uninterrupted eating --

-- or so I thought --

"Honey, I know your tooth is loose, but can you not try to pull it out at the dinner table?"

"That reminds me! Today in PE, we were playing hockey, and someone whacked me right here and I was bleeding."

"That will happen when you get hit in the nose."

"But it wasn't my nose. Weird."

-- looking down at my pasta...with red sauce --

"Can we just eat now?"

"Do you remember Courtney, Mom?"


"She has this dry skin and it just flakes and hangs off her arms and stuff."

--putting my fork down --

-- because so far, putting my foot down hasn't worked --

"Also? When she thinks the teacher's not looking when we're on the carpet, she'll pick scabs off her legs and fling them."

"Well, be sure to duck if you see her aiming for you. And please, leave your loose tooth alone!"

"It's gross. She just picks, picks, picks!"

"Does she eat them?"


"So, it's kind of like this dinner, then, hmmm?"


"She's saying this dinner is like Courtney's scabs."


"Since you're not eating your dinner..."

"My nose is running."

"Seriously, this pasta tastes like dirt."

"It. Is. Fine!"

"I was looking at the Guinness Book of World Records today, and there's this dude who has 9 fingers on one hand!"


"I'm sure he didn't see himself as 'gross.'"

"And three of the fingers? Were stuck together! And there was, like, TWO THUMBS!"

"The better to pick up his fork and eat his dinner when his Mom asked him to, I'm sure."

"I've heard that a monkey went to space once. Is that true?"

"Yes. Also? Let go of your tooth!"

"Is it true, then, too, that corn helps you poop?"

--and then I caught myself actually explaining how corn doesn't fully digest in a person's body and five minutes later, I realized I was still talking about it, so I paused and pushed myself away from the table because clearly, this meal had gone down the crapper --

"I'm done. No dessert for you two tonight, gentlemen."

"Wha? Wait! This pasta's not too bad!"