January 21, 2011

Friday Photography

I worked 14.5 hours yesterday. Frankly, I'm too exhausted to dredge up even the slightest amount of mental bendy-ness and post something funny or insightful or heartfelt.

So, I give you Friday Photography, and one of my very favourite poems (also my very favourite dog):

i carry your heart with me
i carry your heart with me (i carry it in
my heart) i am never without it (anywhere
i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done
by only me is your doing, my darling)
i fear
no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet) i want
no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true)
and it's you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart
i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)
~ e.e. cummings

January 20, 2011

Oh Mamma

At the tender age of 10 I decided that when I grew up, I wanted to be a Mommy.
Oh, over the years I bounced from one career choice to the next:
- Marine Biologist: even though I was rubbish at swimming...but I was absolutely obsessed with marine mammals. I've kept freshwater fish since I was eight years old. I wanted to swim with dolphins (I finally did about 2 years ago and though I partly hate myself for it - they were captive raised - I still maintain that the day I swam with dolphins is on my Top Ten list) and study whales and porpoises and sting-rays and-and-and.
- Astronaut: I have an above average IQ that stuck me in gifted classes in school until I begged my Mom to Please Put Me Back In Regular School! (she did) But I am no rocket scientist.
- Veterinarian: I was even more obsessed with cats, dogs and horses than I was with water creatures, and when I did a career study at a local vet clinic I resolved to become a Veterinarian myself. It is the one career choice that I never really gave up on, even today. I started training dogs, under my Mom's tutelage, when I was very young and became a groomer and trainer in my early 20's. I am a self-proclaimed - and self taught - expert on canine/feline nutrition. Yes, I know more about nutrition than your vet. I can go on for hours about proper nutrition, grooming and training.
- Pediatric Nurse: When I was about 16 the prospect of becoming a Ped's Nurse specializing in Diabetes warred with my long-standing desire to be a Vet. I wanted to help kids with Diabetes, give something back to the community.
When I was 22 I went back to college, after a long stint as a Nanny, and entered the Vet Assistant program in order to get a taste for Veterinary Medicine. I would have had to move to Saskatchewan for the Vet Program, you see, and I wanted to be as certain as possible that this avenue was still the one I wanted to pursue. Funny, isn't it, how one can believe that the years stretch endlessly ahead and there will always be time and money to do the things one desires. Le sigh. But at the last minute, after speaking to the Nursing HUC teacher (an RN herself) I transferred into the Nursing HUC program and spent two years learning about the anatomy/physiology/disease etiology/pharmacology/all those other -ology's of people instead of animals. I loved it and still wish that I could have become a professional student. Alas, I ended up working in Geriatrics for a not-for-profit healthcare society and dealt with dementia clients on a daily basis. I quickly realized that this wasn't the right environment for me (I wanted to work with KIDS for crying out loud!! But I needed a ton of experience before I could even pursue pediatrics) and got a job at a Doctor's office, where I put up with a egotistical, verbally abusive British thinks he's god doctor for 3 months. I ended up quitting and, through temp agencies, fell into Finance where I've spent the past 6 years regretting my 20-year old self's flighty choices and wishing I could afford to go back to school, even as a Vet Tech.
But through it all my desire for motherhood remained. Remains. I was voted the girl most likely to have 8 kids by the time she was 25 by my highschool peers. I was a Nanny and practically raised a little boy in my late teens/early twenties; he was my baby, that boy, and when I left him to go back to College it was as difficult as giving up a child to someone else. I was never a 'dater'; that is, I've been in 3 relationships in my 30 years and only one of them really mattered, only one man reached out and grasped my heart. He was The One. It was a long distance relationship. He was 11 years older than I and the relationship evolved from a very close friendship - he was my soul mate. Not the cheesy oooh-I-saw-him-across-the-room-and-it-was-luuuurve-at-first-sight mate; no, he was my Bosom Buddy. The closest, best friend I ever had. He never wanted kids until he initiated a romantic relationship with me; it was only then that his mind was changed. I, naive, hopeful, in-love-for-the-very-first-time Me, believed him. You may laugh bitterly - I just did.
I'm sure that you can probably guess what happened from there: one day we had a huge, relationship-altering fight about something not even worth mentioning now. In the aftermath he changed his mind again; I decided I don't want kids, he told me. (Way to press that EASY button!) He wasn't willing to do the long-distance thing anymore, nor was he willing to do anything to fix the distance. That day he just gave up on us, and in response I completely exploded and, after another 3-ish months of trying to be his friend and constantly fighting with him and grieving the relationship and trying desperately not to love him anymore, I gave up, too. I packed up my boot-trodden heart and never talked to him again.
And now I'm 30 years old, still single, having a hell of a time trying to learn how to date, where to meet men, where to meet men who aren't just interested in getting bendy and leaving, and how to trust someone Not to Break my Heart again. There is still nothing more that I need than to be a Mommy; sometimes it is a physical ache that causes a clenching in my chest and an aching emptiness in my womb. I am disgustingly envious of the women around me who glow with the prospect of motherhood, who have all of the things I so desperately wish for; it reached the point where I was having difficulty being around babies and children because I wanted them SO badly, because I was constantly surrounded by something it felt like I might never have! So, two years ago, I decided that if I'm not in a committed relationship with the possibility of children an almost certainty by my 33rd birthday, I will knock myself up. I have already started to investigate and initiate Intrauterine Insemination in order to have all my rubber duckies in a row, and I've written and filed a plan of action that includes a timeline (heh). I'm also preparing myself financially so that 2.5 years from now I will be able to provide the most stable environment I can as a single parent. I always keep in mind that the age I've decided on may have to change under certain circumstances - what it won't do, though, is go over 35. That is my threshold, I have to start trying by that age at the latest.
The amount of support that I've received from friends and family is overwhelming - I'm sure that there will be plenty of naysayers and judgers but for now I'm surrounded by encouragement and well-wishes and positive thoughts. My good friends are positive that I will be The Best Mom Ever, even if I'm single (and of course I agree since I channel awesomeness). My Mom would be on cloud nine if I raped myself tomorrow and got knocked up by a turkey baster...and to be honest, sometimes it's Really Incredibly HARD not to just throw good judgement in the mud and do it. Tomorrow. Next week. SOON!
I want to be a Mommy. I was put on this earth to be a Mommy. My empty arms want to be filled, my heart wants to give of itself, to provide love and guidance and eskimo kisses to a child. The very core of me needs to be a parent, for unselfish and selfish reasons beyond explanation. It simply is, I simply must.
But for now I'll wait.
907 days.

January 19, 2011

"It's gonna bleed like stink."

Ahhhh, one infamous statement made by my Doctor which I chose to disregard and which left me looking like Carrie, covered in pig's blood.

4 Weeks Ago

I'd been bothering a mole on my head for about two weeks. It was getting bigger and just didn't feel right to my probing fingers, so I made an appointment to have my Doctor take a look at it. OK, it was freaking ugly, too. My vanity was bothered when the 6 year old that I am a Nanny to made one of those squirrely little faces that only young girls can make, and asked me, "What is that weird thing on your head?"

It was big. It always had been big and sat squarely on my natural part about two inches from the hairline at my forehead. Oh, if that's not gross enough, I also have one on my left eye. Right on the lash line. You have to be right smack dab in my personal bubble to see it...which makes me thankful that I've not ever had a squirelly face from some Hawttie.

Anyway, my vanity was offended by a 6 year old and suddenly that mole was surely the size of a very large witch's wart and Needed. To. Go. So after work, on a Wednesday night, a few days before Christmas, I carried it with me into my Doctor's office where she felt it up, declared it surely benign, and offered to remove it.

[dumbass] "Yes please," said I.

"It's gonna bleed like stink," was her response. "I can wait until the weekend if you'd like?"

But the weekend was Christmas, and I was leaving for my sister's house for the holidays.

[DUMBASS] "I'll be OK, just get it over with!" I was sure that it wouldn't be that bad - after all, I knew all about the copious bleeding of head wounds thanks to my medical classes in college. I was prepared. A little blood never hurt anyone! [ahem...Dumbass!!]

She froze my head up, brandished a scalpel just outside my line of sight and started sawing. No, I'm not kidding or exaggerating for dramatic purposes. I heard the sawing. I felt the noise of that scalpel squeaking back and forth through the flesh of my scalp. Uggggggggggggg. I shudder even now thinking of it.

And then I felt the blood, waterfalls of thick liquid running down my head, soaking in my hair and puddling under my head on the pillow. I actually asked her if she had maybe hit something important, you know, like my BRAIN??? Or some magical Spanxster-only artery of awesomeness that might be spewing blood a la ER?? Oh Gawd my awesomeness is spewing!!!

Alas, my Awesomeness Artery remains intact (phew) and the gore of that night was the typical bleeding of a head wound. Which I should mention that I was prepared for. Uh huh. Right. When the surgery was done - after a blood-soaked gauze pad was pressed over the 3 stitches for ten minutes - my Doctor helped me to sit up (very carefully) and tried to soak up the red stuff coating my hair with paper towel. I joked about what people would think...should I scream a little before I leave the room, maybe add some cackling sound effects in for fun? (She rolls her eyes at me a lot. I don't know why.) Next time I'll wear my prom dress, I promised her. And then I walked out, blood-soaked head held high, thanking gawd for once in my life that my hair is naturally red and blood just blends in sooo well. Ahhh vanity, thy name is blood-red hair!
Yep, it bleeds like stink

Oh I forgot to mention...it Hurt. Once the freezing wore off it felt like my skull was exposed to the cold winter air. Ouch ouch OuCh! I, fortress of strength, who walked on a broken ankle for two days when I was a teenager, wimped out and called my Moooooommy. I whined and complained and whimpered and my Mom was over at my house within 10 minutes to help me rinse the blood out of my hair and pat my back and tell me what a brave little girl I am. It took 30 minutes!!!And that was just the rinsing!

The incision itself is almost fully healed (it was a benign growth!) and soon I'll be able to put some new hair in. [moment of silence for SQUEEEEEEE!] But you know what? I woke up the next morning and the first thing I thought was:

Wow, I missed out on a really epic self-portrait series of photographs!

It's no wonder my Doctor rolls her eyes.

January 18, 2011

My New Career Path

In light of recent economic developments (AKA: uber job suckage and rising costs of gas and groceries) I've decided to pursue a new career and become independently wealthy.

My new job (drumrolllllllllllll please!!):

*Dunh dun dun DUNNNNNNN*

International Jewel Thief.

I figure that my myriad qualifications make me the perfect jewel thief:

- Wearing Spanx everyday will make the adjustment into having to wear a catsuit quite smooth. [actually it will be lumpy. Veeeeeery lumpy. Probably requiring 3 Spanx under the catsuit just to avoid scaring potential thief-ees to death. Though that may be a tool to add to my arsenal...]

- My Freakishly Tiny Feet. Meaning I can balance atop smaller tops much easier than someone with, say, freakishly average feet. That's what I presume anyway...I'm not inclined to test my theory at this point.

- I chew at least 12 pieces of gum a day. Gum, as we all know, is a very useful little plaque-remover. It also freshens breath so I could potentially have a big bowl of greek salad to fuel my little thieving escapades without alerting my thief-ees with knockemdead mouth breathing. May also be useful in scaling walls.

- I have very stylish glasses.

You may consider this my official resume. My references are as follows:

"The Spanxster is easily the sneakiest person I know. She is so sneaky that when she wears sneakers she can sneak up on an elephant from the left side without spooking the big mammal." ~ Some dude

"I am willing to rub The Spanxster's fingerprints off with sandpaper." ~ Nameless

"She stole my ham sandwich that one Wednesday and I had to ask around the office several times just to find out it was her!" ~ Coworker

"Please make her an International Jewel Thief so she'll stop sleeping on my couch!" ~ Anonymous

"Frankly, she just looks sneaky." ~ Grumpy Old Man

Independent wealth, here I come!!!

January 15, 2011

Who Needs Wine...

I won’t pretty up my abysmal lack of stature; I’m short. It sucks – if you’re short too*, you know that there are evil cupboard gremlins that deliberately move the extra-virgin olive oil to the very back of the middle shelf. Where you can juuuuuust touch the bottle with your fingertips but grabbing it is impossible.

I’m 5’2″. But I totally rock Uma Thurman on the inside!

Thanks to my mother’s mother, who is a tiny Scottish lady, not only am I short, I also have curly red hair and ridiculously tiny feet. And when you put all that together, it’s like trying to drive a mini-cooper on Big Wheel tires. With nasty red handlebar streamers. During a thundershower.

Or something.

It’s like the reverse-hobbit effect (sans hairy feet, thank you very much); short person walking on feet too small, not to mention the well-known fact that I’m also busty (thanks to my sperm donors family for that – I hope you All get Hemorrhoids!)…like a ship without sails…or a rudder…or whatever the hell that’s called. Shit, that’s not right. OK, like one of those blow up punchy dudes I had when I was a kid, dude that BONGED from side to side whenever he moved, the one I named Bert and practiced french kissing on… But anywhore, it makes for some grade-A klutz moments, all of which star yours truly (see, totally channeling the Uma again!).

Most Notable (or, Why I Would Totally Win the “Are you sure you aren’t drunk?!” contest):

Numero Uno:
Seventh grade. Skiing. I didn’t need lessons because I was the awesomest, hottest girl around (I am not responsible for your personal delusions) and I was all over skiing the hill with the black rating with my more agile friends. My snowplowing skills were legendary and I was immortal. I had a cape, even - swear, it's in my linen closet attracting moths as we speak! A quarter of the way down the steepest fucking hill in the entire world (did I mention that the scenery is devoid of mountains?) my chicken-legs started failing me and I made a sharp turn to the left, heading directly towards the group of students from my school who were lined up in a row. Taking lessons. The instructor was yelling at me to STOP, I was shrieking that my brakes had locked up…..and BAM! I took out the last kid in line. Who, in turn, took out the kid ahead of him. Who, in turn, took out the kid ahead of him. And so on and so on, exactly like a game of dominoes but with blood and snot and all that squishy OOF and OW-NESS. I came out relatively unscathed but was banished from ski days for the rest of the year. Because I totally rock like that.

Numero Deux: 
Fast forward about ten years and picture this: our protagonist is taking a leisurely walk with The Greatest Mom. Ever., and her younger sister. The camera pans to show road crews working in the heat, tearing up three feet of pavement directly in the path of our main character, The Artist Formerly Known as Her Highness The Spanxster. Mother and sister walk slightly behind The Artist Formerly Known as blah blah blah, engaged in a heated discussion. So heated, that sister walks directly into a light standard. Baha.
Yeah, keep on laughing.
The Artist blah blah turns around to laugh hysterically and point at her now raccoon-ed sister, smugly showing her graceful manner by prancing backwards, laughing and pointing all at once. What Talent! What Grace! Until our doomed A-blah-blah continues to step back…into nothing. And proceeds to fall, backwards, three feet into the dug out road. Duhn-duhn-duh. To the couple sitting on their porch in audience, trying desperately not to inhale their entire cigarettes as they laughed, our protagonist grits her teeth, smiles, and says:
“I’ll be auditioning for the circus tomorrow! See you there!”
Sexy, eh?

Now, picture all this light-bottom, top-heavy, reverse-hobbit-ness perched atop size 5, three inch spike heels.

Yep, if I was a man, I’d totally want me.

Except…are you sure you aren’t drunk?

*Anyone taller than 5’2″ is Not short. And we hope you get hemorrhoids too!

January 14, 2011

Lower Your Expectations

When I was four years old, I was a ballerina. All little girls know that ballerina’s are beautiful for three reasons: their buns (hair, not ass, people), their tights and, of course, the tu-tu’s. I wore mine every day without fail. With leggings. Pink, purple, green, it didn’t matter. That tu-tu would be tied around my waist while I went frog-hunting with my bestest boy friend in the whole world.

I miss the simplicity of a tu-tu, believing that a stiff pink skirt was all one needed to W.O.W! the world. And the ease of hunting frogs that are nothing more than, well, little slimy green dudes.

Nowadays my frog hunts and stiff pink....AHEMs are unintended and crop up after particularly nasty dates during which the man sitting across from me discreetly picks his nose. At the dinner table. Dude, there is nothing discreet about diving for boogers. Or how about that guy on the undisclosed dating website who asked me if I wanted to barbecue up some cat and eat it. Yeah, I was all over that action……or not. My poor little pussy cringed in response. Yours did too, admit it. I am seriously considering anonymous donor insemination because I love to rape myself. And I really, really REALLY want a baby. My biological clock is tick-tick-ticking out a tune that's working it's way towards 31 and my spanx are the only thing holding me together. Sometimes. Wine occasionally lends itself towards my emotional stability along with running and a cigar.

I’m willing to try anything at least once – well almost anything...BBQ’d cat being one exception. I hate moths (and have been known to run screaming from them like a prissy little girl) and germs. My face is often hidden behind a camera and there is always a petite Border Collie glued to my ankles. OK, OK, running circles around my aging ankles to be more precise. People who are constantly texting their friends/family/Donald Trump make me want to grab a chainsaw and go all massacre on their index fingers. Shy is not a word to describe me. I grew up in the country, live in a small town and have an undying love for shoes. I'm extremely opinionated and confident in the universal fact that yes, I do indeed Know Everything. OK hold on, I have to consult with the Gawds of Google because I need a major hyperbole here. Right. I'm exorbitantly opinionated. Radically and terrifically opinionated. 100% right All. The. Time.

Oh, and I talk.

A Lot.