Posts Tagged ‘Back 2 Blogging’

Why do I blog?  Some of my readers may find themselves asking this very question when they see me skipping from topic to topic, from fruit flies to Oprah, from stillbirth to plus-size models.  If you can imagine, all of these topics (and so many more) float through my mind at least once per hour.  Especially Oprah.  I think a lot about Oprah.  Frankly, I should probably be on Ritalin but I try my very best to avoid prescription drugs that teenagers are apt to snort.  It’s just one of my many peculiarities.  So, why do I blog?  I blog for a lot of reasons but the very most important one is not what brought me into blogging to begin with.  I am, by nature, a very private and reclusive person.  I don’t see very many people very often.  With blogging I am able to interact with the world, on my own time and on my own terms.  When somebody comments on my blog and I click through to see what they’re all about, I am sometimes shocked, often delighted, and always enlightened.  Because humans are like snowflakes in that no two of us are alike.  I love being able to peek into the lives of other people, tea in hand, from the comfort of my own home.  And I love it when somebody peeks into mine.

I love that I am able to relate to the world without ever needing to take off my jammies.  And that’s good stuff right there.

{Thank you to SITS and to the sponsors of the Back to Blogging event, Standards of Excellence, Westar Kitchen & Bath, and Florida Builder Appliances.}

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A woman who inspires me, a woman who inspires me, a woman who inspires me…  I’ve been thinking about this writing assignment for a few days now and I’ve been having a hard time choosing just one woman.  There are women who inspire me in different ways every single day.  Some are inspiring mothers, writers, friends, businesspeople, athletes, actors, neighbors, grandmothers, activists, lactivists, gardeners…  How do I choose just one?  And then I received an email newsletter from Faces of Loss, Faces of Hope and I had my answer.

Faces of Loss, Faces of Hope is a support site that is “putting a face on miscarriage, stillbirth and infant loss.”  Women are able to submit their stories and photos to the Faces Gallery.  The creator of the site, Kristin Cook, lost her little girl in May due to a blood clot in the umbilical cord.  I found her blog, Dear Stevie, after I lost Mabel in June.  Although this sort of misery does not love company, I did find comfort in knowing that I was not alone in my sorrow, confusion, anger, and emptiness.  Kristin started Faces of Loss, Faces of Hope with several other mothers who have experienced the loss of a child.  The site, and all of the beautiful faces that are featured, are a testament to a woman’s ability to endure unthinkable heartbreak.  These women are survivors and I am one, too.  Luckily, being a survivor doesn’t mean that we don’t get to have days where the tears flow easily and the emptiness in our arms seems too much to bear.  But tomorrow is a new day.  If that one sucks too, there will be another day after that.  And another and another.

Many women suffer the loss of a child.  Too many.  But not every woman is able to create something so positive out of the pain.  Thank you for doing what you do, Kristin.  You are true inspiration.

Kristin’s carving of Mabel’s name, from her Forest project

{Thank you to SITS and to the sponsors of the Back to Blogging event, Standards of Excellence, Westar Kitchen & Bath, and Florida Builder Appliances.}

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{Today is Day 4 of the Back to Blogging event at SITS.  The assignment today is to re-upload a post with a title that you’re particularly proud of and explain why.  I chose a post from August of 2009, The Bridge on the River Why.  It’s difficult for me to say that I am proud of something (refer back to my Day 2 post if you wish…) but I do think this title is rather clever.  Parenting a preschooler is not so different from WWII, is it?  And, for the record, Averi’s 4th birthday did not exactly herald a grinding halt to the inquisitiveness.  Thank God!}

Three-year-olds are wonderful.  Their minds are like little sponges and each new day offers endless opportunities for learning, adventure and fun.  They are loving, independent, hilarious, and smart as whips.  They are also inquisitive.  Here is an example of a typical conversation that I might have on a car ride with my daughter:

“Mommy, is your dress brown?”

“Yes, it is.”


“I just felt like wearing a brown dress today.”

“But, why?”

“Well, I like the color brown and thought this would be a nice thing to wear today.”


“Um, different people like to wear different things and this is what I chose today.”


“Maybe we should have some Quiet Time for a little while.”

Even the very sweetest exchange can be shot dead in its tracks:

“Mommy, do you love me?”

“Of course I love you!”


“Because you’re my sweet girl.”


“I guess you were just made that way.”


“I’m not sure.  I guess Mommy just got lucky.”

“Why did you get lucky?”

“I guess I just did.  That’s all.”

“But why?”

“Do you wanna watch The Berenstain Bears?”

Yep, 3-year-olds are indeed wonderful.  And I will miss this stage terribly when Averi is four and more interested in her preschool friends than in asking me questions about everything on Earth.  But for the love of God,  the CIA could take a few pointers from my 3-year old when it comes to torturous interrogation tactics.  Waterboarding?  Sleep deprivation?  Ha!  Make them drive a Volvo around for a few hours with a 3-year old strapped into the back and I guarantee you their subjects will crack under the pressure.  You don’t need to ask any mother of a 3-year old, “Why?”

{Thank you to SITS and to the sponsors of the Back to Blogging event, Standards of Excellence, Westar Kitchen & Bath, and Florida Builder Appliances.}

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{Today is Day 2 of the Back to Blogging event.  The assignment is to re-upload one of your posts that you wish more people had read and explain why the post is important to you.  This is one of my earlier posts.  I feel like we, as a society, are overly-dependent upon the “professional” opinions of others.  The US economy is in the toilet, the nation is politically divided (but what’s new?) and we are being diagnosed with anxiety and depression in record numbers.  Nope, it’s not all apple pie and Budweiser up in this joint.  I wrote this (sort of overly-personal) post as a reminder to myself that not everybody with a degree is worth their salt.  I recently had an experience with a very bad doctor and this post was brought to mind.  I need to start interrogating choosing my caregivers more carefully…}

I tend to be a fairly anxious person.  This is not really a problem, per se.  However, during a time in college I decided that it was and thought it best to seek treatment.  The Catch-22 here is that an individual suffering from anxiety is really the last person on earth who should be choosing the proper person to help treat their anxiety.  I, for example, picked up the Yellow Pages and scrolled down to the most German-sounding name I could find.  Let’s call him Dr. V.  During our first visit, Dr. V informed me that I should return the following week to complete the MMPI-2, a personality inventory commonly used for diagnosis in the mental health field.  (“Read the following statement and check the box that most applies:  I feel that strangers are following me.  Strongly agree, Somewhat agree, Disagree, Not Sure…”)  During our next visit he told me that I suffered from moderate anxiety and he prescribed something.  During our three or four subsequent visits we looked back and forth between each other and the clock uncomfortably and then I got the hell out of Dodge the second the 50 minutes were up.  So that was that.

A couple of years later I started thinking about Dr. V.  I called to request my records and after several messages left unreturned, I finally caught him on the phone.  He was extremely uncooperative, almost to the point of being hostile.  He told me that he would charge me his normal hourly rate to photocopy the records.  I told him that I thought that to be both unreasonable and illegal and he responded, “Vhat?!  Vhat do you vant to know?  I remember zees test vell.  It told me jou are a VERY competitive lesbian!”  To which I replied, “Um, what?  Perhaps you are thinking of a different patient.  And I don’t think the MMPI diagnoses lesbianism.”  “NO!  YOU!  Competitive lesbian!”  Click.  So that was that.

Alas, I did not get the records.  10 years later I am still entirely heterosexual and I have often marveled at my slacker-like qualities.  The fact that I did not report the incident speaks to that.  I just Googled Dr. V and I see that his license was revoked in 2003 for “unprofessional conduct”.  I wonder if he opened his Can of Competitive Lesbian Whoopass on the wrong girl.

{Thank you to SITS and to the sponsors of the Back to Blogging event, Standards of Excellence, Westar Kitchen & Bath, and Florida Builder Appliances.}

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{I think about blog posts and writing ideas all day long.  I should have enough material for years worth of posts but unless I sit down and get typing right away, the ideas float away and re-enter the atmosphere, an opening sentence here and an ironic insight there.  I bought myself a little notepad to keep in my purse so that I can jot down some of my ideas but it seems to be lost in the Bermuda Triangle that is my purse, along with the Clif bars and the lipgloss I haven’t worn in months.  And then along came SITS!  They’re hosting a Back To Blogging event this week to help those of us bloggers who need a little push to get posting.  To sweeten the pot, one lucky lady will win Thelma and Louise!  Each day, there will be a different posting assignment.  Today we are to re-upload our very first blog post.  Mine is below.}

So, I’ve been meaning to start writing this damn thing for quite some time.  In fact, years.  What’s the problem?  Well, the name for one thing.  How does the old saying go?  “All of the good ones are either taken or gay”?  I had this problem when I was pregnant and spent hours, days, weeks, months, (YEARS?!) thinking about, discussing, researching, arguing about, defending and inventing names.  My child didn’t end up with a name until the day that we were taking her home from the hospital and only then it was under duress (“If you name her HERE, we can file all of the paperwork TODAY!”) and possibly the influence of Vicodin (She weighed over 10 pounds so back off, all of you Naturalistas.  Arnica wasn’t gonna do the trick.).  But name her we did!  Now, one must assume that my kid is a lot more important to me than this blog.  Of course she is.  And I’ve been busy raising her into the 3.25-year old hellion who is dancing wildly a few feet from me as I type.  I will try to write when she is far enough away from me so as not to impede movement of my hands (which is infrequent).  I have a few things to say and with all of the formalities of the name out of the way I am hoping to get down to the business of saying them.  So,This Human’s Condition it is!  Or is it Kenny?

{Thank you to SITS and to the sponsors of the Back To Blogging event, Standards of Excellence, Westar Kitchen & Bath, and Florida Builder Appliances.}

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