Sunday, August 30, 2009

Man Parts

My son has figured out how to pull his "man parts" out of his fly on his underwear. My daughter is equally impressed and duly proud of his accomplishment. My father, who was in town this weekend, came by to see the kids. Apparently, when they were upstairs my daughter explained to my dad that her brother can pull his penis out of his fly. She continued by saying, "But my daddy can't pull his out of his underwear."

I guess the fact that my husband keeps his privates private is a good thing or else we'd have my daughter running around telling everyone that he pulls his penis out of his underwear.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Baby on Brain

A couple different sets of friends of our recently had babies. Like within the same week. Within this same time span we have had three separate announcements from others that they were with child. This is a lot of reproducing going on.

Suddenly, my four year old daughter is OBSESSED with me having another baby. We have gone, in the mere matter of days, from her telling me I should never, ever under any circumstance have another baby to her practically charting when I'll be ovulating for the next six months.

Every morning she wakes up and says, "Are you pregnant yet?" Or, "Is there a baby growing inside your tummy yet?" Every day. Multiple times a day. Did I mention everyday?

This morning, after sitting through breakfast while she quizzed me on whether or not I was pregnant yet, I said, "See this little pill that mommy takes? This makes sure that mommy doesn't have another baby right now." She responded by suggesting, "How about you just don't take those anymore. Then you can have a baby."

Don't get me wrong. I am not opposed to having another child and in all honesty if we do decide to have a third it probably won't be that far down the road. However, it's not happening right this second as my daughter would apparently like. Nor would I be advertising to my four year old we were even trying to get pregnant.

I think the factor that swayed her was when she looked at me earnestly one day about two weeks ago and asked, "If you have another baby, can I boss it around?" I said, "Well, I'm sure you'll boss a new baby around the same way you boss your brother around." She looked very contemplative for a few minutes and then decidedly said, "Well, then you can have another baby. I want you to."

So, there you have it. I guess that settles it.

Pneumonia Boy

My son is currently suffering through his third round of pneumonia in his two short years of life. We spent Wednesday night in Urgent Care after his breathing had become labored and the sounds his lungs were making were not from this planet. Two hours, three chest x-rays, an exam and breathing treatment later we were told he had pneumonia.......again.

Both kids have been sick for almost three weeks now with colds. My daughter is finally on the mend, yet like always a simple cold turns into a serious respiratory complication with my son. I called the doctor Friday who told me to just keep giving him nebulizer treatments at home and that should help clear it up. Against my better judgment I did not take him to Urgent Care over the weekend. By Sunday he seemed to be getting better until Wednesday morning when he totally relapsed. I do this every time. Play the waiting game in my head. Should I take him? What if it's nothing? Then I've wasted time and money, plus exposed him to whatever germs are floating around in the hospital. But what if it's something? And he's just getting worse? The times I don't take him right away and wait are the times he ends up with pneumonia, RSV, Bronchitis, etc. The times I take him right away are the times it is "nothing." I can't win.

So, it looks like we will be spending another week or so cooped up in the house. Then this past week I caught what the kids have had. I feel horrible. The worst part is the exhaustion and constant headache. This afternoon I had my grandmother come over to keep my daughter entertained. I then took a shot of whiskey and took a nap. I woke up an hour later in a puddle of sweat just dripping. Fever broke. So, I'm hoping I will start feeling better soon. As I type this, still not feeling better.

Here's my question/concern/dilemma......Everyone says this is going to be a nasty flu season (and by everyone I mean the reputable people I have spoken to...pediatricians, hospital doctors, friends in the health care field, etc....not the mass hysteria splashed all over the news....although they may be right). Even just taking away the risk of H1N1, the regular flu poses a great risk for my son because of these respiratory issues. I was told last night that the more I could keep him away from group setting, etc. the better. Because I stay home with the kids, this isn't impossible. I don't have him in pre-school or day care of anything like that. However, I do like to leave my house yet sadly every time I do the poor kid ends up hospitalized or close to it. I put my gym membership on hold yesterday for 3 months to wait out the "flu season" since both kids go to a child care facility there. May be extreme, but it's a sacrifice I am willing to make right now. I can work out at home if it will mean my son isn't getting constantly sick. However, I do have to go to church, to the grocery store, see other human beings, take my daughter to dance, go to doctor's appointments, essentially function as a social being in a world that is inhabited by other people....people with germs.

Needless to say these past few weeks have been crazy. The house is a wreck, dishes need to be done, clothes need to be washed, folded, and put away, kids rooms need to be cleaned. Honestly, I don't care though....which is saying a lot, because usually I am rather militant about having things picked up in my house the SECOND someone is done using or playing with it. I have neither the energy nor the inclination to play housekeeper right now. I guess I am more concerned that my son can breathe and in the process of taking care of him I don't keel over dead. :) Oh yeah, I could use a shower too. It's been about three days.

So, how are you all feeling? Worried about the flu season?

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Can You Hear Me Now?

My daughter has been in her new dance class for 3 weeks now and each week we (all the other parents and grandparents) sit in the lobby, which is fairly small, and wait for the class to end. One particular girl is brought to class by her grandmother each week. This grandmother, for whatever reason, feels that the 45 minutes she waits is the perfect time for her to make a phone call to her gossip buddy and talk the entire time about things none of the rest of us care to hear.

For example, in the past three weeks I have learned the following:

- she has a high school aged grandson who is very troubled and who she feels no one understands but her
- Whether I am watching my daughter dance or not, I, along with every other person in the lobby and the person she is on the phone with, gets a play by play of what is going on during the dance class. "Oh, they are jumping now. Oh, wait now they are changing into their tap shoes. Oh, oh wait now they are all standing in a circle."
- I have learned the eating habits of all her grandchildren, how many snacks they receive during the day, how their food is prepared, and the like
-Apparently, one grandchild will only eat Annie's organic mac and cheese but she "fancies it up" with broccoli. Another only eats grapes, pretzels, and Doritos.
- Her daughter in law also seems to be the brunt of much criticism. She begins many sentences with "And I said..." and then proceeds to loudly inform the person on the other end of the phone what she told her daughter in law and it is usually something critical.
- And today I learned that she thinks either her daughter in law or one of her grand daughters is way too chubby. I couldn't tell which one she was talking about. Apparently, she is going to send a video to her friend, which she has already posted on YouTube, that shows how chubby this person is because all she eats is Italian bread sticks. If you happen to see this video, she is the one on the far right....the chubby one.

Bottom line is that I'm sick of sitting there and listening to her talk. She talks way too loudly and frankly it is too much information. I can envision myself in the near future just losing it and screaming at her to take her conversation outside. I'm privately hoping one of the other moms does it first. I don't know why certain people feel it totally appropriate to have LONG and LOUD conversations in a public setting.

Am I the only one that feels this way?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Sick and Tired

My kids have been sick for two weeks now, primarily with colds. Of course, my son always has respiratory complications so he is still sick and on breathing treatments. I knew I would end up sick, but I started thinking I may get through this unscathed when more than a week and a half passed and I still wasn't sick.

Then I woke up Sunday feeling crappy: sore throat, exhausted, sneezing. Full on cold hit today in addition to some type of stomach bug and cold sweats. Ugh. All I really want to do is crawl into bed and sleep the day away. While I am fairly confident that the kids wouldn't kill themselves or others I greatly fear what my house would look like when I finally awoke. So, for that reason I will suffer through the day, awake, and hope that for the first time in more than two months I actually can sleep through the night tonight.

Being sick sucks. Being sick and having to take care of others is downright torture. Can I get an "Amen?"

So, what do you do when you are sick and tired yet have kids to care for?

Sunday, August 23, 2009


Some friends of ours are heading home with their new baby this weekend. I was looking at pictures of him on the computer when my children walked in and asked whose baby it was. I began telling them when my daughter interrupted asking whether or not I was going to have another baby. (Let's just say it was a very rough adjustment for her bringing her younger brother home, so I don't think she was asking in hopeful anticipation of another sibling). I responded by asking them if they wanted another brother or sister. Before my daughter could answer my two year old son adamantly said, "No, I'm mama's baby. Bad new baby."

This led to the conversation about how they could help with a new baby. My daughter asked, "Would this baby live here with us?" I said, "Of course he/she would." My son started shaking his head furiously chanting, "No, no, no, no" while my daughter thought for a moment and said, "Can't the baby just go live with grandma instead?"

Thursday, August 20, 2009

All I Want For Christmas........Is Teeth

This is the first year that we set aside pre-tax dollars into a flexible spending account for medical expenses. We reviewed our medical expenses for the past couple of years and basically decided to set aside half of what we've preciously needed because a)if we don't use it we lose it and b)Two of the last four years I have had babies, and one of those years one of those babies was hospitalized. So, needless to say our medical expenses have been substantial the past four years.

Thankfully, this year has not been so tough on the pocket book. There will be no new baby, hopefully no hospitalization, and as a whole we have been pretty healthy....or healthy enough to not need extensive medical care. Just a few days ago I mentioned to my husband that come December 31 we may be scrambling to try to find ways to spend the remaining money. We started talking about the designer glasses we'd pick out since we buy our glasses at a shop that doesn't take insurance and every frame is $40. Stylin'.

Well, fret no more. After my trip to the dentist today we will be lucky to have any money left over. Long story short, four fillings that I have had for years need to be pulled out and each of those four teeth need to have a new filling put in. Apparently, there is decay underneath the filling and the fillings are leaking....the dentist used a nifty little gadget to determine that, which was slightly reminiscent of HazMat determining the presence of chemicals. In addition to that piece of handiwork there are also two teeth that will require crowns. One tooth I knew was a possibility for two years. My previous dentist has been trying to baby it along. It can be babied no more.

When all is said and done there is 2,000 dollars worth of work that needs to be done to my mouth. Insurance will cover just under half of it, which means I am looking at 1,200 big ones just so I can have teeth and not be reduced to straw feedings.

Obviously, there are a lot of other things I would like to spend that money on, but on the other hand since it will be coming out of the flexible spending account it is unlikely that we will have to worry come December 31 what to spend any remaining money on....because there won't be any remaining money.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Who Need Sleep

I have a long history of trouble sleeping: restlessness, insomnia, restless leg syndrome, night terrors, sleep walking, talking in my sleep. Yeah, I know. I'm a bit messed up. My freshman year of college, second month at school, my grandfather died and the insomnia was exacerbated. I wouldn't sleep for days, sometimes weeks, at a time. Needless to say this wasn't that conducive to a rigorous class schedule, combined with the demands of being a college athlete. I was a walking zombie and it wasn't until well into my sophomore year that my sleeping became a bit more regular.

Ever since, this insomnia is triggered, every once in a while.....sometimes for no real apparent reason. A few weeks ago I began suffering from this again. I am miserable. I am so unbelievably tired all the time and simply cannot sleep. I am barely making it through the day which isn't ideal with two small children. Everyday around 2 pm I become so tired that I could literally collapse. Unfortunately, I can't just leave my children to run wild, so I fight through it, sometimes miserably and then plan to go to bed at a reasonable time.

That reasonable time comes and I toss and turn, sometimes for hours, until I just give up. My head pounds, my eyes burn, it takes incredible effort at times to even find the energy to speak when that time of day hits where I literally feel like all systems are shutting down.

I can't take anything because I am still breastfeeding and frankly I'm not a fan of taking medication to help me sleep. I did it a few years back and just felt so groggy all the time that it really wasn't worth it to me to get knocked out for a few hours and still not feel refreshed.

There's not a real point to this disclosure of information other than to say that I am tired beyond exhaustion, that is part of the reason some of the writing has been light, and that I am hoping and praying for sleep.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Driving 101

Today certainly could have been better. My daughter has been sick with a pretty bad cold since Friday so we planned to stay close to home today. My son and I seem to be coming down with a cold and so neither of us are feeling our best.

Around noon I decided I would put the kids in the car and run to the bank quickly to deposit a few checks. I was hoping that at least my son would fall asleep on the way or way back. Car doesn't start, doesn't turn over, nothing. Totally dead. The good news is that I realized this today as I have a doctor appointment first thing tomorrow morning for both me and my son, dance class on Wednesday for my daughter, and a dentist appointment Thursday for myself. This is not the week to be without a car.

My plan was to push the car out of the garage so that I could get another car close enough to it to jump it, head to the store and have the battery replaced, assuming that it was the battery. Our driveway is on a downward slope and it's short. There's not a lot of room for error getting it out of the garage and secured before rolling into the street. I try to push from inside of the drivers door but am unable to get it to move. So, I keep the door ajar and head to the front of the car to give it a nudge. I realized I'd have to jump back around quickly and hop in to put on the brake. Well, the door got caught on the side of the wall in the garage, practically ripping the door off. Mercifully, it was the only thing that kept the car from rolling into the street. However, it did some damage to the wall and to the car door. From there it wouldn't budge. Couldn't close the door, couldn't move the car, couldn't close the garage as half the car was in and the other out.

My brother was able to come up and help me get the car back in the garage and get the door out of the wall and also jump me. From there we got the battery replaced (which is a whole other story about car dealerships and their service departments).

As a whole it was an aggravating afternoon. However, in retrospect the whole incident, now that it is over, is a bit funny. I am sure anyone watching this probably found great humor in the situation.

This evening I put the kids back in the car to pick up dinner and my daughter says, "Mommy, I hope the car starts this time." I told her that I hoped that it started too. She then said, "Or else you might crash the car again." Funny kid. Not so funny that I am wholly responsible for the body damage on both cars we own.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

The Look of Youth

We were driving in the car today and I was looking in the visor mirror. I scrunched up my face and noticed a few "wrinkles" around my eyes when I did that.

Me: Look at these wrinkles (then I turned to my husband and scrunched up my face).
Hubby: Those aren't wrinkles, but anyone making that face is bound to have some lines.
Me: They are wrinkles.
Hubby: Seriously, when do you ever make that face?
Me: I don't know, but if and when I do people are going to notice that I have wrinkles.
Hubby: Yeah, okay.
Me: It's sad because I am losing my youthful, vibrant, full of life look and it's being slowly replaced by the look of someone old, haggard, and wrinkled.
Hubby: Says the woman who was just carded at the grocery store while buying alcohol.
Me: I'm just sayin'. And, look here at my temple. Is that gray?
Hubby: That is not gray. That's blonde.
Me: Are you sure?
Hubby: You have dirty blonde hair. That's the color of your hair. It's not gray.
Me: If it ever goes gray I am dying my hair.
Hubby: No one is even gray in your family. I don't think you have to worry.
Me: My grandma is.
Hubby: She's 81.
Me: Well, that's not too far away
Hubby: 50 years isn't far away? Okay, I'm not having this conversation anymore. You are not gray, you do not have wrinkles, and you don't look haggard. You look 12.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

A Tragic End

I awoke to the news today that my grandfather's sister (my grandfather has been dead since 1996), who is almost 94, and her 66 year old daughter are dead. Apparently, the daughter who for all intents and purposes is an invalid set fire to the trailer, trying to smoke while using medical oxygen, and both she and her mother perished. My grandmother was obviously shaken and while I was not particularly close to either my grandfather's sister or her daughter it is shocking and sad nonetheless.

My grandfather's sister has been taking care of her daughter for years. She has had a host of physical and mental problems that have rendered her helpless. They have hired occasional help but most of the day to day care taking fell in the lap of my grandfather's sister, which has been stressful to say the least. Recently, they had planned to put the 66 year old daughter into a care facility, even though she has been kicked out of every one she has been in for a variety of reasons.

I just think if you live almost 94 years, this is just such a tragic and senseless way to die. Any loss of life, especially through accidental means, is tragic. We were hoping that she had lost consciousness and died of smoke inhalation, but later found out she was the one who had called 911, so she knew she was probably going to die. A very sad and tragic end.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Where I Rethink the Wisdom of Giving a Two Year Old Golf Clubs

I really wanted to get my son golf clubs for Christmas. He'll be 2 1/2 then and I thought it would be cute for him to be able to go to the driving range with my husband. He has a little plastic set that he plays with and is pretty coordinated. So, I've been looking around and pricing clubs, not wanting to spend too much since I am figuring he won't stay his cute 2 1/2 sized self for long.

Then suddenly, as if the gods could sense the disaster I was about to create, he started using everything as a weapon....and I mean everything. His Nerf bat, his utensils, the mop, the broom, his plastic picker upper, his plastic hammer, his rake and shovel. The list really could go on for days. He chases his sister down and hits her with these things...sometimes out of anger, other times just for fun.

All this hitting has made me reconsider the golf club idea. Somehow I just don't see any good coming from his holy hellion self being in possession of something much heavier and more capable of inflicting injury to members of his family. Now I need a new idea for Christmas and a new sport for which to groom him. Any suggestions?

Monday, August 10, 2009

Chatty Chad

Our 26 month old son talks pretty well for his age. He has a pretty vast vocabulary, thanks in part to his ridiculously verbal older sister, and he strings together six to ten word sentences like a pro. While he has been talking for a while, the quantity and duration has greatly increased in the past few months. One of the things he is now obsessed with is talking on the phone. He wants to call my husband at work, his grandmother on both the phone and Skype and his great-grandmother at home as well.

Most of the time I indulge him, he'll talk for a few minutes, lose interest, and then think it is hilarious to hang up on whoever he is talking to. Today, however, he was upset and wanted to call his grandma. So, I dialed, gave him the phone, and then continued putting laundry away. I could hear him talking for a couple of minutes and went in the room a couple of times to tell him to say goodbye. Each time he said no and went back to talking. I finally got tired of waiting and went into the other room.

Twenty minutes later he brought the phone in to me. According to my mom, he talked to her the entire time, telling her about why he was upset (I hurt his feelings), what he did today (went to the gym and played), and a variety of other things going on in his world. Such a crack up.

I figured when my daughter reaches a certain age the phone will become permanently attached to the side of her head. What I didn't count on is that the same scenario is now a distinct possibility for my son.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Weekend Getaway

The fish that the kids liked to go and watch. My son in the pool.

My daughter (in pink) in the pool with some random folks in the background.

My husband and son conked out.
Saturday morning I had spent ten minutes outside doing some light gardening and when I came back inside I was just dripping wet. I wanted nothing more than to just jump in a pool. So, spur of the moment I tried to Priceline a room at one of the handful of resorts here in town. No surprise that our low price was accepted....Tucson isn't really a desirable place to be during the summer we quickly packed our swimsuits, sunscreen, hats, and some clothes and headed to the Hilton.

We spent the next 24 hours either in the pool or sleeping. It was wonderful. The kids had a great time and there was just enough breeze that at times we were even chilly in the pool. My daughter would seriously live in a hotel if we could afford it. She loves everything about "hotel life": room service, comfy beds, constant swimming, water slides, and just exploring outside. My son, while he loved the swimming, asked constantly to go home. He even woke up most of the night crying because he wanted to go home. If I could have slept with him in the pool all would have been okay, but he is definitely a home body.

Anyway, we are back home. Back to reality and sweating again. What was your weekend like? Did you do anything fun or exciting?

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Tender Feelings

I am four years older than my brother A and ten years older than my brother T. Because of this, there is quite a bit of my brothers' childhood that I remember vividly. One of the things that sticks out most to me is how tenderhearted both were. They were so sensitive and got their feelings hurt if someone simply looked at them wrong. There were numerous occasions where they would end up running from the room in tears because their feelings were crushed.

My son is the same way. He is so sensitive and tenderhearted and always so cognizant of others and their feelings. He dissolves into tears if his sister ignores him, his father speaks sternly to him, or if I give him a look that he feels is anything less than loving. It can be heartbreaking. Usually, when this happens he will let me hold him and comfort him until he calms down.

Lately, however, he screams for my husband. He's utterly beside himself crying, "Call my daddy now."He won't stop until I call my husband at work, at which point my son gets on the phone and tells him his sob usually involves his sister not sharing, his sister taking a toy, waking up on the wrong side of the bed, and his mommy not letting him go to the store naked. Things like that. In the past few weeks my husband probably takes five or six calls a day with my screaming son on the other end. I feel horrible interrupting him, however my son will simply not stop the hysterics until he can talk to his daddy.

So, for now I suppose my husband will just have to continue fielding calls to comfort our tenderhearted boy.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The Joys of Teaching

One of the things you learn fairly early on in your career as a teacher is to not expect a lot of appreciation from either parents or students. I suppose nobody goes into teaching for the money or fame, anyways. However, one of the nicest compliments, in my opinion, is when a student thanks you or otherwise expresses his/her appreciation for what you have done. Over the years I have had former students thank me for helping them, believing in them, being patient with them, teaching them, showing them a real world application to my lessons, giving them boundaries, setting high standards and then holding them to them, and the like. The majority of the time these words of thanks come years after graduation, when they realize everything I demanded or encouraged was in preparation for life outside of high school, whether it be college, the work force, a trade school, or the military.

It has been four years since I quit teaching to stay home with my children and people ask me all the time if I miss it and/or if I will return. I loved teaching. I loved being in the classroom with the kids, interacting with them, challenging them, seeing the "light go on" as they grasped a concept for the first time. If my day consisted of solely teaching my job would have been wonderful. Unfortunately, it is the political bull and hoop jumping that sucked the joy out of teaching for me. Towards the end it seemed like it was less and less about the kids and actual learning and retention and more and more about test scores and appeasing disgruntled parents.

Over the years I have kept in touch with a handful of students and former athletes that played for me. Many of them were students my first and second year teaching when I was only 23 and they were 18. The age difference was not that great and so I had to "lay down the law" so they understood there was a boundary. Much to my surprise I found that "attitude" really worked and with clear boundaries and expectations kids stayed within those boundaries and met those expectations. Now, many of these first students are 25 or 26 years old and the dynamic of the relationships have changed. I've veered off topic a bit....

Anyway, a former student who was a senior in one of my English classes in 2003 "friended" me on Facebook the other day. He was a kid I really liked, but who other teachers labeled difficult. They thought he was lazy, had an attitude problem, and was generally a lost cause. I made it a point to never base my feelings of a student on what other teachers said and I didn't with him either. The first few weeks all of what these teachers had said was true. However, for some reason he and I connected. I kept on him, called him at home and woke him up when he ditched my class (which was first period), demanded he participate, kept on him about work he owed me. Basically, I drove him crazy and held him to a standard that no other teacher had apparently held him to. I didn't really think much of it because I did this with all my students. I expected a lot and more often than not students rose to meet those expectations. Second semester he had a free period and he asked to be my aide. I agreed. During the time when he was running copies for me or cleaning the classroom we would chat just about general things, mostly music which he and I both loved. I also had him use that time to make sure his work from other classes was done, had him organize each class into binders, made him clean out his backpack...just things that seem like common sense but that a lot of highschoolers don't do.

He graduated, I got five new classes of 30 + students, and years passed. Until yesterday when I get this incredibly touching note from him about how there are very few things or teachers he remembers positively about high school, but that I was one of them, as was my English class. He then thanked me for teaching him so much, not just about English but about life in general, and said that I was the only reason he actually ended up graduating on time. He said I was the first teacher who held him to such a high standard and demanded that he reach it and that he appreciated my "no bullshit, no excuse" attitude when it came to school work, education, and behavior. One of my non-negotiable policies was that I never accepted late work. There were no exceptions. This was always a point of contention as other teachers would accept it for reduced credit. My reasoning was that it is rare that any college professor will accept work late and even more rare that your boss will accept half-baked excuses for missing a deadline. He pleaded with me on more than one occasion to accept his work that was a day to weeks late. The answer was always NO. In this note he apologizes for "hassling me" about the "late work stuff" and says somewhat unbelievably that his college professors won't accept late work either and that his boss made him stay late to finish a job because it had to be ready to go the next morning. He seemed dumbfounded that my reasoning was actually based on what goes on in the "real world."

Honestly, it was one of the most touching things I have had said to me in a professional sense. I think part of the reason was because of the source; I would not have expected this from him. I was also happy to learn that he was gainfully employed and had gone back to college to finish his degree.

When I think about returning to teaching I am truly undecided. I know I was good at my job and that my students learned a lot, but I sometimes wonder if that is really enough or if any of that really makes a difference. When I hear things like this from students years later it really exemplifies all that is right with education. Lord knows there is plenty wrong with it, whether it be public, private, parochial, charter, alternative, or home school. It makes me think that maybe I really do belong in a classroom and that maybe students are getting a lot more out of it than any of us are giving them credit for.

Death to Insurance Companies

I am tired of insurance companies. Really, if there was a legitimate and cost effective way to do without them I am all for it. There are actually a few doctors in our town that don't take insurance at all. It's a cash business for the wealthy and if I were among the wealthy I think I'd take advantage.

My son has had this lip condition for over a year now. We have seen doctor after doctor and no one yet has been able to diagnose or effectively treat it. Meanwhile it's getting worse and I am worried about scarring or disfigurement. I am trying to get our son into a specialized facility to be seen by one of their world class doctors. To do this, it has required a lot of research and investigation on my part, which is fine. All I ask in return is that our insurance company demonstrate the slightest bit of competence. Oh yeah, and that those that interface with customers actually speak the English language.

I can get most of the information I need via the Internet. I can log into our insurance account, find doctors, look at the status of claims, etc. When I set the account up I put it in my husband's name since he is the primary on the insurance. However, he has never once logged into it. A month ago I went to log on and it said my password was incorrect and it locked me out. I called and they said they'd send reset instructions in seven to ten days. Problem number one. I am supposed to wait seven to ten days to be able to access anything? Ten, eleven, twelve days pass and I receive nothing in the mail. So, I call back and they supposedly are going to send it out again. So now my seven to ten days has turned into at least fourteen to twenty. A full month passes and I receive nothing.

I called back yesterday as I was still locked out of our online account. The guy was a total douche and said he basically can't tell me anything since I set up the online account in my husband's name. We went round and round with me trying to explain that I set the account up, that I have permission to access the account, and that I need to know how to access our benefits. He tells me that he needs to speak with my husband. So, I have my husband call and he's pissed because a)he was in a meeting and b)he's already on two separate occasions given my "permission" for full access to the account. He then says he wants to reset the account to which they tell him they will mail him something in seven to ten days, but that if I want to set up my own online log in I would have to call back myself.

I call back and am again told that i don't have any permission to access the account. It is at this point that I lost it. I am usually pretty calm on the phone even when dealing with incompetent idiots. This was it, though. I flipped. I told them that my husband had just called in, that I was sick of being given the run around, that they were the most incompetent bunch of idiots I have ever dealt with and that's saying a lot considering I taught in a public school for six years (not a knock on the students). I told her I have called twice before, it's now been 30 days and we still don't have the reset. She then looks it up, verifies that I have called twice, and then admits that the paperwork has never been sent out. Surprise, they really are incompetent.

There may have been vague threats about what would happen if another ten days passes without getting this paperwork...something about contacting every governing board and agency that oversees them, there may also have been the suggestion that they don't hire idiot douche bags or people that can't speak English in any recognizable dialect. And possibly there was something about why people become so frustrated, freak out and open fire. I know I probably sounded like a lunatic, but honestly after trying to handle it in a mature fashion and getting nowhere because the combined IQ of those working for the insurance company is 0 I just couldn't take it and simply flipped out.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

My Lap is Free, Please Take a Seat

My husband and I actually got to go on a date today thanks to my mom. I think we average two a year, sadly. Anyway, we went to see The Hangover and then out for sushi and beer. When we walked into the theatre it was completely empty. We were the only ones in the entire place. We picked our seat and settled in. A few minutes later an older couple walked in.

Before they even headed our way I knew exactly what was going to happen. With all the empty seats in the theatre they came and sat right next to us, leaving only one seat between the wife and my husband. Every other darn seat in the entire theatre was empty and remained empty the entire movie. Yet they had to sit THAT close. What is with people?

I wish I could say this was the first time it has happened to us, but I'd be lying. It happens frequently. I don't understand it. When I walk into a relatively empty theatre I make it a point to sit as far away from the other patrons as possible.

So, there we sat. The four of us all nestled close together listening to the lady munch her popcorn and slurp her soda.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

When I Think About You I Touch Myself or Something Like That

We went out for lunch today and my son was sitting next to me in the booth. In typical fashion he cannot sit still so he is climbing on me, leaning on me, pulling on me, and altogether just constantly touching me. I'm fairly used to it but it started to drive me crazy as I was trying to eat. So, I told him to sit down and just not touch me. My daughter, very loudly, says, "Hey, you can just sit there and touch yourself." My husband and I glance at each other as she continues, "Mommy, you can touch yourself too and daddy you can go and touch yourself too, but you can't touch mommy or my brother. You all can just go and touch yourselves."

It gave the waitress and the older couple at the table next to ours a good laugh.