I just had sex with my husband on doctor’s orders because my ovaries finally decided to kick out a few follicles that might turn into eggs that might turn into a baby or quite possibly a litter and I’ve got to tell ya, I’m not sure if I’m rooting for Team Infertility or Team Modern Medicine to come out the victor. The first I already know and can handle. The second is shiny, new, and…

I can’t wrap my mind around what I don’t know.

Disclaimer: Wait, what? Me? Sex? With my husband? If you know me in real life from before social media existed, please stab yourself in the eyeballs with the nearest semi-sharp object and let yourself continue to believe that we brought Buttercup home with us after holding hands while skipping through a cabbage patch field.

Of course, the deed *ahem* has been done and I can’t undo whatever fate may have in store for us anymore than that hairdresser at Great Clips can emotionally unscar the teenage boy who broke into tears after she complimented him on his new Justin Bieber-esque look before he left with his mother who kept reassuring him that he and every other boy in America or at least Tucson younger than 20 do not, in fact, look like Belieber groupies in denial.

Even though he totally did.

I can’t undo. And it’s not the um, doctors-orders-homework that has me all a titter. Life is good in the land of The Married. He drives me crazy. I drive him crazy. And when things get boring we pretend to argue just to spice it up a bit. The issue that has me wondering WHAT THE HELL DID I JUST DO? is the fact that I may have voluntarily and irrevocably changed the simple reality I know and love for allowing me to not go any crazier than I already am.

She can walk. She can talk. And she’s fairly self-sufficient on the potty front. She goes to school a few hours for a few days a week and makes herself laugh silly with really bad knock-knock jokes. She’s four going on fourteen going on forty and she’s the miracle we waited almost two years for that I didn’t know would become the reality I wanted until I held her in my arms for the first time because I’m the kind of person who is so afraid of change that I’ve trained my brain not to want the unknown and instead accept the new today once the wind has already changed direction.

It’s true. I don’t want to go to Paris or Italy or dream of cruises or tropical islands because I have never experienced them. I have no desire to try something crazy just so I can say I did it because that would require planning and foresight and a willingness to not be so rigid but if I happen to be out on the town with a friend and she decided on a whim to stop in a piercing shop I can’t promise I won’t come home without a dainty little nose piercing. I didn’t plan my wedding as a girl growing up or sign my name with the Crush of the Week’s in doodle hearts while dating because I that would have required me dreaming about What If instead of focusing on What Was. And when I finally came to the moment where The Boyfriend became The Fiance who became The Husband as I walked down the aisle to become The Wife, I was In Love and In Awe and In Flux between states of complete calm because Life was Happening and Utter Terror because Life was Happening.

It wasn’t until the day after graduating high school, arriving on my college campus, graduating with honors, starting my first job, moving in with The Boyfriend who became The Fiance who became The Husband, pushing the baby out, moving cross-country Anything Important that Has Happened in My Life that I’ve had pretty much the same thought process work itself out in my mind: That wasn’t as bad as you thought it was going to be, you jackass. Well, except for maybe the pushing the baby thing out. She was totally worth it but Dude! That pretty much sucked. This is what was meant to be and where I was meant to end up. This moment is magic and I really need to lighten up and allow more magic to just spontaneously happen because that’s how life works.

I know this. And yet, I sit here…wondering what I want the doctor to tell me when it’s time for results and how I will react. Wondering if I can love another baby as much as I love the miracle that already is. Wondering if I am enough to mother more than once child and nurture them both completely in the way that is singularly unique to their own beings and needs without falling short and thinking I should have quit while I was ahead.

I wonder because I don’t know. And I won’t know until tomorrow comes. Until then, I concentrate on this breath…

And then the next…

 

I am 33.

I weigh 203 pounds.

I have kinky hair.

I have curves that fill clothes out in all the right places.

And for the first time in my life, I am appreciative of it all.

I’ve spent far too many years looking forward to where I wanted to be, ignoring where I actually was.

We all want to be older when we are kids. We can’t wait to be 10. We can’t wait to be 13. We can’t wait to get our licenses. Or be old enough to not have to hope the homeless guy hanging out in front of the closest liquor store to campus will actually return with our hard earned cash and our cheap vodka.

I suppose it’s normal enough. As is the eventual wish to be granted the power to slow down when our own little ones are growing before our very eyes; their hopes to be bigger and older reminding us of how fast it really goes by.

Then there are the Untils...You know, the ones that are supposed to come prepackaged with happiness and a pretty little bow?

I can’t wait until I lose (five, 10, 20, 50) pounds. I’ll celebrate with a cruise.

I can’t wait until I can do downward facing dog without looking like a hospital patient in traction. That’s when I’ll know yoga is working for me.

Or: I can’t wait until I get that (tummy tuck, boob lift, nose job). I’ll feel so good about myself then.

But what about now? Why put our happiness and self-worth on hold for a future we can’t predict, no matter how hard we workout, how many calories we count, or how much we plan to take out of our retirement funds to pay for that plastic surgery? Why not just open our eyes, look in a mirror, and be happy with what is?

I’ve spent so much energy planning for a better/skinnier/prettier me when I should have been saving some of that Until for the Here and Now. I’m not telling you to forget about your health goals or to give up on your dreams of a six-pack, but I am asking you to take a moment to honor the you in the mirror. The one looking back at you this very minute. The one who deserves to be applauded for getting out of bed another day and just fucking trying.

There’s a photo of me on my dresser that The Husband took on our first vacation together. I was 21 and looking happy, care-free, and thin…

There are times I look at my former self and wish I could look like that again. That my thighs would be as toned. My waist as trim. But that’s the hindsight talking. If you had asked the me in the photo how I felt, I would have told you I couldn’t wait until

Until what? I lost 10 more pounds? So I could look exactly like I did in high school?

But the high school me wasn’t happy, either. She was miserable and lost in sea of self-loathing, only coming up for air to binge again in preparation for the next purge. But both the 33-year-old me and the 21-year-old me wish that we could go back in time and explain to the 15-year-old with the eating disorder that she is beautiful. That she is not meant to look like the cheerleaders she admires.

That her curves are something to be admired, not cursed. That her body is exactly what it should be.

Maybe the 15-year-old would have listened. Maybe she would have realized that the reflection she sees in the mirror needs acceptance and love. Maybe it would have made all the difference in the world.

I am 33.

I weight 203 pounds.

I have kinky hair.

I have curves that fill out clothes in all the right places.

And I am beautiful.

Now it’s your turn. What will you tell the woman looking at your from the other side of the mirror?

***

This post originally appeared on Bookieboo.

 

Dear Lane Bryant,

I know I’ve been kind of…distant lately. *Shuffles feet* And I know I’ve stood you up on more than one promised shopping date. *Stares at the ground* So really, I would totally understand if you wanted to break up with me. Frankly, it would save me the trouble of having to do it myself.

Look, Lane. We’ve had this conversation before. You being too needy? And why do I always have to pick up the tab? I NEED MY SPACE!

I’ve thought about this long and hard, Lane. And because you haven’t really taken any of the hints I have been dropping, I’ve decided to just drop the “letting you down easy” bit and just tell it like it is.

So here are my Top Ten reasons for why I am dumping you for Other Stores.

10- You lie. A size 14 at your store is not a size 14 for the Rest of the World. You want proof? Just take a look in my pre-pregnancy clothes bin from five years ago. I have size 14′s in there that I JUST GOT BACK INTO (and yes, thank you, my ass looks pretty cute in them) so it makes no sense that the 14′s in your store today are falling off of me after I have zipped them up.

9- You are a not a cheap date. Have you looked at your price tags, lately?

8- It’s not you…it’s me. No, really. I’ve outgrown you. And by that? I really mean I’ve gotten too small for your britches.

7- I don’t want to be tied down right now. It’s true. Go ahead and call me a retail slut. I don’t care. But I have had no choice but to shop at your store since I pushed Buttercup out my hooha, and this retail monogamy has gotten kind of stale. And really…it’s not like you were being all that faithful to me.

6- Have you seen the rest of that big world out there? I just realized it was here in front of me the whole time. Old Navy. Coldwater Creek. New York and Company…new styles. New sizes. New reasons to stare at my Cuter Than it’s Been in Four Years and Nine Months Ass in the full length mirrors in the dressing room.

5- I need to be able to express myself. And frankly, having to send the sales attendant morsecode messages for her to decipher in silence indicating my frustration that the smallest size in your store is too big for me to avoid the Evil Death Stares from bigger women doing their shopping was really just stifling me. I’d much rather walk into Any Other Store and ask for a 14 without having to give a damn what the size 0′s are snickering about.

4- Don’t take it personally. We had a good time while it lasted. And you really were good to me. I swear that a few of my favorite wardrobe staples say Lane Bryant on the label. If you hadn’t changed your sizing, things might be different today.

3- The irony here is that now that I am too small for you, Lane, I may find myself in need of you again. At least if The Husband has his way. Which is why…

2- I’m not necessarily calling this a break up.

1- Just a trial separation.

 

The Husband has a new work schedule.

Related? I am majorly confuzzled about my workout schedule.

I’ve talked a lot about how I find my happy place when I put myself second. And for the past three months, I have been doing pretty spiffy. The Husband was on days and was gone by 6 am. I was up by 8 with Buttercup and three days a week had her off to school by no later than 11:30 a.m. and as soon as I got home? It was instant Ohm time, kettlebell time, or zumba time. I would usually have just enough time to shower and go pick her up before returning home to figure out dinner, which would (usually) be ready when The Husband got home from work.

Quaint. I know.

There was some family chit-chat, How was your day, Honeys, and Smooch Smooch as we finished up dinner. Then I went one way to bathe Buttercup and tuck her into bed while he went the other to tuck himself in start the whole process over again.

By 9 p.m., both Buttercup and The Husband were counting sheep. Which meant I would start chanting the adult-mama-writer version of party, party, party! and promptly sit my happy ass down on the couch with my netbook and categorize music on iTunes while working on writing projects and blogging.

Twitter? What’s that? Never touch the stuff.

Sometime between midnight and 1 a.m., I was off to dreamland myself. Or at least tweeting that I should be. Shut up.

The bottom line is that in the last three months, I figured it all out. There was a time and a place for everything. I knew when to work out. I knew when to play house. And I knew when to follow my dreams.

Hello book deal!

Then, of course, everything changed.

I knew it was coming. How could I not? His schedule rotates every few months. So I can’t act like I had no idea. He even warned reminded me a few weeks back that the shift change was coming!

Now? It’s all kinds of jacked up. He wakes up at 10. I’ve been up since 8. He shuffles downstairs to eat as I am getting Buttercup ready for school. I return home to find him sprawled on the living room couch in front of the TV I usually use to work out.

So instead? I make our lunch and pack his cooler for dinner and Hug, Hug, Kiss, Kiss, Have a good Day at Work, Honey. And then suddenly it’s time to pick up Buttercup from school. I might be able to talk her into a fun Zumba or kettlebell routine but honestly, it depends on what kind of  day she had at school. So maybe I work out. Or maybe I pretend to be Super Mommy who just got turned into an apple by the evil Dr. No-No until bath, book, and bed time. It’s kind of a crap-shoot.

I’ll be honest…I really don’t want to start sweating at 9 p.m. ‘Cuz then I have to shower and wash my hair and really, by the time I’m done with all of that, I may as well just get into bed. Besides, my brain is already primed to use that time for ahem, creative expression.

He’s only been on his new shift for a few days and I’m going to figure that the me not working out for the last few days isn’t entirely unrelated.

Don’t worry. I’ll figure it out. I’ll get myself on a brand new schedule. It’ll be fine.

Just until the next schedule change, that is.

***This post originally appeared on Bookieboo.

 

I swear I had a point…an idea…for a blog post this morning.
And it was a good one. I swear.
Before I knocked myself senseless, anyway.

True story.

I had planned on writing about how I finally reached the end of my Weight Loss Free Pass. How after 12 weeks and 15 pounds or so of my ass happily and magically morphing into the smallest version of itself it’s been since before I had a child. How all of it happened with major dietary changes but not a lick of exercise (well kind of, but not really.) And how I got on the scale this morning and depending on exactly where I placed myself on the scale and how long I managed to hold my breath for I either lost .2 pounds or or gained 1.

So it’s over. The Pauline Goes Gluten-free and Dairy-free and Sugar-Free because it’s all Clean-Eating Anyway Diet and Magically Wishes 15 Pounds of Muffin Top Without Breaking a Sweat Experiment is officially over. I start working out tomorrow. I break out the Zumba again. The leashes for the dogs and regular walks. The Just Dance on the Wii.

I was going to write about all of that.

Then I threw some trash in the bathroom garbage can and turned too quickly and punched my jaw with the door frame.

Things have been a little hazy since then. I remember The Husband simultaneously laughing his ass off while figuring out a way to give himself an alibi (considering he was two rooms away when it happened and well, it wasn’t gonna look good either way.) But I’ve got a hell of a headache, my jaw feels like I um, hit a wall with it, and I think I need to get to bed soon. So instead of writing a blog post tonight, I think I’ll go practice remembering my name and reciting the year.

It’s 1986, right?

Wait…what the hell’s a blog?

Social links powered by Ecreative Internet Marketing