Monthly Archives: July 2014

I’ve decided to participate in “Throwback Thursday” by posting a funny, yet true, story that happened 6 years ago: “Mama, my balls are gone.”

“Mama, my balls are gone.”

That lovely sentence woke me up at 6:15am on September 9, 2008. I opened my eyes. “What?” “My balls. They’re gone. See?” Five year old B was standing next to my bed, underwear around his knees, pulling his empty scrotum sac to the right of his penis and sqishing it around to show me just how empty it was. Now, I ask you, how would you have responded? I am a woman. I know what’s in there and what it’s used for and I’ve even enjoyed a few pair in my life, but I had no clue if this disappearing act was normal or cause for alarm. And I certainly didn’t want to alarm B. But I don’t hit the ground running when I wake up like B does, so I was a little slow to respond.

“Mama? Did you hear me? Do you see?” Blink. Blink, blink. “Yes, I heard. I see. I’m sure they’ll be back.” That seemed to satisfy him. Thank goodness he did not ask me where they went! I don’t think I would have been able to think on my feet for that one.

We got dressed, went downstairs for breakfast and received the hub’s daily “good morning” call. I told him B’s balls were gone and asked if this was a problem.

“His WHAT are WHERE?” he asked.
“His BALLS. They are no longer in his SCROTUM SAC. Do I need to WORRY?!”
Silence. “Is he in pain?”
“B, are you in pain?”
“No.”
“No.”
“I don’t know. Have him check again before he leaves for kindergarten. If they’re not back, call me.”

That was funny, in retrospect, b/c what was he gonna do of they weren’t back by the time we left for school? Tell me to keep him home and monitor the situation? Call the ped? Go to the ER? Smack him on the butt and hope they popped out?

They were back before he went to school. And when he came home from school, I asked him to check again and they were still there. WebMD had been no help with finding an explination. But to be fair to the website, I didn’t really know what to look for. “Nuts disappearing” rendered an article on chocolate. I finally remembered that they are called “testicles” but looking for “testicles disappearing” brought up an article about a PGA Tour golfer who lost his game until he rubbed testosterone on his biceps…not really anything to help my 5 year old. I had put a call into my mom, my resident medical expert, but my dad was out of town so her not answering the phone told me she was galavanting with the girls and who knew when she’d return my call.

I’m thinking this is a normal male experience. I have heard several characters in movies talk about things that made their balls shrivel up or crawl back up. And you know all movies have medical consultants on site to ensure the accuracy of the script, right? RIGHT?!

“Our job is to love others without stopping to inquire whether or not they are worthy.” Thomas Merton

 

Because in God’s eyes, we’re ALL worthy. Do you understand that? ALL. OF. US. Not just the ones who believe what I believe. Not just the ones who look nice on the outside. Not just the ones who are outside of prisons.  Not just the ones who live above the poverty line.  Not just the ones who love members of the opposite sex. Not just the ones who vote the same as me. Not just the ones who call God by the same name as me. ALL. OF. US.

All of you are worthy in God’s eyes, not matter what you’ve done. When asked which of the 10 Commandments was the most important, Jesus said forget them. Forget about everything else you’ve read. The past is in the past. He came and wiped the slate clean. He told us the only 2 thing we needed to do were these:

  1. To love God with our whole heart, our whole mind and our whole soul, and
  2. To love each other as we love ourselves.

Well, there must be a whole lot of people out there who don’t love themselves very much, based on how they treat others.  All kinds of people.  Some people who follow Allah, some people who don’t follow anyone nor anything, and some people who follow Jesus.  But I’m telling those people right now – YOU ARE WORTHY.  You have it.  From Him.  From me.  Now start GIVING it.  Please.

 

Trying not to care about what others think

It sounds silly to worry about what others think about me when I’m a supposed grown women in her 40s.  But I still did when I turned 40 and I’ve been working on remedying that. Well, this month I purposefully did things in public that I normally would not do, just to get past worrying about other’s thoughts of me.

1. I pooped in a public restroom.  I’ve done this plenty of times in my life because, when you gotta go, you gotta go!  However, I would go to the restroom in the basement of where I worked because hardly anyone used that one.  Or I’d sit in a stall and wait for the bathroom to clear out until I pushed or held it if someone walked in while I was doing my business. This month, I went in a bathroom and no one else was in there.  I started doing my business and another lady walked in and got into the stall right next to me.  I took deep breaths and with each exhale, let out the embarrassment and worry about what she thought.   Then I just kept on.  It worked!

2. I was in a library while B was at camp.  I sat at a table and put my purse on the seat next to me.  After about 20 minutes, a lady came and sat down in the chair on the other side of my purse.  Usually I would leave my purse there and not move it but I’d worry that the person might reach in and take something b/c it was unzipped.  I’d worry they might want the chair to put their stuff on but can’t because my stuff’s occupying the chair.  And I’d worry they will be mad at me if I move it because they’ll assume I don’t trust them (which is kinda true!).  So I’ve always just sat there, not moving it for fear of hurting the feelings of a complete stranger!  However I wasn’t able to read my book b/c my attention was on my bag the whole time.  So, after 10 minutes of all that worrying in my head, I picked my bag up and put it at my feet on the opposite side of me from the woman who had sat down and I decided to not worry about what she thought.  Yeah, me!

3. On Tuesday, I put on a fresh skort and shirt and took B to camp.  As soon as I got home, I changed into my grungies, got a pot roast in the oven and did a bunch of sweaty, dirty yard word.  I was still in my grungies when I picked up B because I hadn’t finished my yard work.  The next day I was getting dressed to take B to camp and the outfit I’d worn for all of 30 minutes the day before was hanging in the bathroom.  Wednesday was going to be a very hot day and a skort and sleeveless shirt would feel great!  But what would the other moms think when they saw me wearing the same outfit 2 days in a row?!  The fact that that thought went threw my head told me that I had to wear the outfit to get over worrying about what others thought of me.  And I wore it with pride!

4. I love to sing, especially when I’m alone in a car.  Windows rolled up, music blaring and me singing at the top of my lungs – it’s one of my happy places!  I recently came across my Barbra Streisand’s Greatest Hits CD (I think the hubs had hidden it from me!) and was happy to run some errands yesterday, just me and my CD!  However, gas was running really low in the truck and using the A/C burns it up faster.  Plus, it was a cool, cloudy day; no reason to use A/C.  What would people think of me, blaring Barbra Streisand, singing at the top of my lungs with the windows down, causing all kinds of noise pollution?!  Oh, I HAD to do it then!  There weren’t too many others on the road with their windows down, but there was always 1 or 2 next to me at each stop light.  LOL  There was a gentleman in a big, black pickup next to me, with his window down, while I was screaming along to “We’re Not Making Love Anymore”.  God bless him, he kept his eyes straight ahead!  At least he had a funny story to tell at the dinner table last night.  ;o)

There 4 exercises did my soul good and I’m so glad I did them!

The Stress of My Garbage Disposal Switch

To the left of our kitchen sink are 2 light switches.  One is for the light over the sink and the other is for the garbage disposal.  We’ve lived in this house for 6 years, and I still am unsure which switch is which. I feel the builder is playing a sadistic  game with me every time I decide to turn on the light.

You see, there is a 1-2 second pause between when I flip the switch and the light actually comes on.  During that agonizingly loooong time, my heat stops, my body tenses and I hold my breath, hoping I hit the light switch and not the disposal.  When I hit the disposal by accident, it scares the bejeeses out of me!  I scramble, in the complete opposite of a calm manner, to turn it back off or turn the water on, but I manage to do neither due to indecision.  The only thing I manage to do is knock over everything on the counter to the left of the sink as well as knock sponges and soap into the sink.  I must look like The Three Stooges rolled into one!

And once the disposal is finally off, I’ve put everything back in it’s place, and my heart rate has come back to normal, I say to myself, “I have got to label these switches!”  However, as soon as I turn around, the thought goes completely out of my mind.  That is, until the next time I have to turn the light over the sink on, and I curse myself for not labeling it last time.

You know what?!  I’m going to go do it RIGHT. NOW.  BRB….

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TA-DA!!!  See?  Something good does come from sitting down and getting stuff off my chest!  However, as I walked over to the sink, deciding I would take a pic to show y’all that I’d done it, I noticed that the switch plate was not at it’s best.  I started to wipe it clean before attaching the labels and accidentally turned the disposal switch on!  ERRR!  Why couldn’t it be the light switch?!  It scared me, I said a four-lettered word and the only reason I didn’t knock anything over is because I had moved everything out of the way to clean the switch plate.  Phew!

BTW, when I told the hubs I was going to blog about this, he said he can never remember which switch is which, either.  Although, he manages to keep his cool if he hits the wrong one.  Showoff!  ;o)

Addressing God

I was raised Catholic and went to Catholic schools for 12 years.  I’ve received all of the sacraments except for Holy Orders (becoming a nun or a priest) and Last Rights (blessing before you die).  I haven’t practiced Catholicism in 10+ years, but on the occasion I visit one for a wedding or a funeral, I still know when to kneel, sit or stand and can recite the proper responses automatically.  I miss the look of sunlight as it poured through the stained glass windows.  I miss the hymns.  But that’s it.

Sadly, I wasn’t taught how to have a relationship with God; I wasn’t worthy of one.  Most prayers were recitations and those I heard that were not, addressed God as, “Lord.”  So that is how I addressed Him on the occasion I decided to pray.  Luckily we found a wonderful church in 2008 that taught me I was worthy, I was loved.  I learned about grace and unending second chances.  I learned how to develop a relationship with God.  I got to know Him and I now speak to Him all the time.

However, I still addressed Him as Lord.  It was solely out of habit and every time I said it or thought it, I’d stumble in what I wanted to say.  It made me uncomfortable to call Him Lord and so I’d pause, mentally shake my head at myself, think of another word to use and by the time I did, the momentum of my prayer was gone.  So many others whom I admire and look up to for spiritual guidance address God as “Jesus”.  When I find myself using the word Lord, I back up and start over with Jesus.

I don’t think it matters what you call Him – God, Lord, Jesus, Yahweh, Allah, Shiva, Mother Earth, The Force, etc.  I believe we’re all referring to the same Being.  So why did it bother me when I called Him Lord?  I finally figured it out in the wee hours of the night yesterday.  Lord is a title; Jesus is a name.  Lord is formal and it usually refers to a ruler, not a Father.  Jesus is the first name of the God who took a human form and suffered and died for all of us, including me.  That’s how much He loves me!  I couldn’t have a deep, intimate relationship with someone I addressed by their title but I can with someone whom I’m on a first name basis and who also knows what it’s like to be human.

You know what else I realized in those wee hours?  I don’t have to call Him anything!  You know why?  Because I don’t have to summon Him from the other room.  I don’t have to let Him know that what I’m saying is directed at Him.  He’s here, with me, all the time!  He never leaves my side.  He actually hears everything I say, regardless of whom it’s directed towards and whether or not I want Him to hear it.  ;o)

After that A-HA! moment, lying there in the dark, the hubs and B still sound asleep, this warm peace spread through me, starting at my heart.  And when it reached my face, my mouth just spread into a big smile.  He was telling me He was proud that I’d finally figured that out.

So now when I talk to Him, I start with, “Hi” or “Hey there” or I just start saying what I want to tell Him without any introduction.  Because He’s there’s, always and ready to give me His full attention.

Cleaning toilets are the WORST!

I hate cleaning toilets!  We have three of them – UGH!  Over the weekend when I was cleaning bathrooms, I said to the hubs, “I don’t know if I hate cleaning toilets more because they’re totally gross or if I hate scrubbing the tubs and showers because there’s so much reaching and stretching.”  He replied, “Toilets.  You definitely hate toilets more.”  How do you know,” I asked.  “Because every time you clean a toilet, you vocalize how much you hate it.  Like that guy in the Washington Post jobs commercial.”

The toilet seats didn’t make cleaning the toilets any easier.  They had chips and cracks in them and I felt like all kinds of dirty stuff was getting in there and I couldn’t reach it.  Plus, stuff gets on, in and under the hinges and, even if I used a scrub brush, I felt I wasn’t getting it all.  So a few months ago, I went on strike; I declared I was not cleaning another toilet until I got new toilet seats!  The following Saturday morning, the hubs took me to Home Depot to pick new ones out.  :o)

Y’all I love my new toilet seats!  I still hate cleaning toilets, but these new seats allow me to clean thoroughly.  How?  Because they come off!  Instead of just screwing a toilet seat to the toilet, my new seats have a base that is attached to the toilet.  The seats then fit onto the base and lock in place.  When it’s time to clean them, I just slip the back parts to the unlock position and lift them off.  This way, I have full access to the top of the bowl for cleaning!  No more trying to scrub around the hinges at the back, knowing I wasn’t getting everything out of the nooks and crannies!  The exclamation points used in this paragraph are not angry ones, but excited ones.  I am that excited about and happy with my new toilet seats.

Now you know me – full disclosure,  not afraid to show the ugly truth, because others do it/feel it/think it but are afraid to show it.  Not me.  So, if you want to stop right here and go back to Yahoo! or Facebook, I won’t hold it against you.  Those of you who are brave, I’m going to show you picks of a toilet seat before I cleaned it.

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This is the toilet in B’s bathroom. That’s cat hair on it. Right now, the seats are locked in place.

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Here’s a closeup of one. I’ve moved them both into the unlock position and them I pull the seat off. It doesn’t come off easily, but that’s to ensure the seat doesn’t slide around.

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See the rubber bases that hold the seat in place? The seat snaps over those so you have to tug to get them off, but it’s not a big deal. And look at the crud that I now have full access to in order to clean it off! I feel better knowing that I can get it all.

I still hate cleaning toilets because two males use them, but I feel better knowing that when I do clean them, I’m getting it all.

 

Why Right Guard is My Preferred Bathroom Air Freshener

 

Febreeze vs Right Guard

I have a very sensitive nose.  The hubs calls it my 2nd super power, my 1st being the ability to grow a human.  I can smell things that others can’t and I really dislike artificial scents.  I have never liked air fresheners, plug ins, counter decor that give off scents nor scented candles and, to me, most people smell like they marinated in their perfume or cologne.  The hubs says my nose would be perfect for working in a perfume lab, but I would die in one of those!  I bet I could work in a mine and save the canaries, though, or replace the TSA dogs in airports.

I could put up with air fresheners if they actually eliminated the unwanted bathroom odors, and they probably do to most people’s noses.  But to me, they just add a second, unpleasant odor to the room and I have to run.  We’ve tried all brands and kinds of air fresheners and the hubs loves each one even more than the last but I can’t stand the smell!

One smell that I do love, and it ranks right up there with the natural fragrance of babies, is the hubs.  He doesn’t wear cologne but he uses Right Guard Sport spray deodorant.  When he comes out of the bathroom in the morning, all dressed and ready to face the day, I can make him late for work because I just want to smell his pits forever!

One day, after using the bathroom, I searched around but didn’t find any air freshener.  Now, I would have been perfectly fine with the fan on and walking away, but the hubs insists that all parties spray in this house.  *sigh*  “What to do, what to do….”  While I searched under the sink a second time to find something to use, I came upon the hubs’ Right Guard.  DING, DING, DING!  love the scent of Right Guard and it’s technically a spray, so I’d be making both the hubs and my nose happy.

So I shot two, quick bursts into the air, much less than what we usually spray from an air freshener can, and you know what?  It worked!  No layers of Right Guard and poop competing against each other, just the lovely scent of my manly man.  WOOHOO!  My nose, and libido, have been very happy ever since!  😉

Note:  Just because there is a Febreeze can in the picture does not mean that I have anything against Febreeze air fresheners.  The hubs and B love the Febreeze scents and say that it does it’s job according to their noses.  However, my nose is supersensitive and I prefer not to smell any air freshener, regardless of the brand.  Febreeze just happens to be the hubs’ preferred spray, I found the above can in another bathroom and needed it for my picture.  That’s all.  Febreeze is enjoyed by the other 2 members of this family.

 

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