Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Speaking of whining…

I love my dear husband (see earlier posts) – I love my kids, they make me crazy and insane and often I behave strangely because of the things they do… but I adore them, more than they can ever understand until they have children of their own, and maybe not then… BUT

I am SOOOOOO happy (notice the Jr. High emphasis by placing lots of ‘o’s) that they have returned to school and my life can once again return to some shadow of it’s former self. Not bad enough that they got two extra days of vacation (see any news about the state of weather in Colorado or this listing on ebay) and were home whining about how they were SO prepared for their finals and now they will have to study all over again. Not bad enough that we were totally unprepared for the holidays (as usual), and that there was 26” of snow on the ground and no way to escape the hell that was our home with everyone home and whining. Not bad enough that as soon as Mother Nature lulled us into thinking it was all going to be okay and we would somehow catch up on the errands, and our internet shopping that was to be delivered on the 20th would somehow arrive by the 24th, and we might actually get the rest of the shopping done, she dumps more snow on our happy little village (okay it’s a crappy city covered with brown schlocky snow/slush/ice – but village sounds so much more poetic). We were surviving all of that, the kids had ceased whining about finals when they realized there really wasn’t any point in spending their entire vacation unhappy, the boy was shoveling like a demon at home and at his grandparents (both houses), we managed one big shopping trip to Kohl’s before the first storm, and another to Target in between storms – yes if you got your gift from me, likely you can return it one of those two places, husband made lovely pictures of the internet gifts and we put them in envelopes on the tree, and we even managed to get our baking groceries layed in before the storm… in fact, we were going to be baking on the 22nd, we had the kitchen ready to go, the groceries, and boom… Husband calls from the grocery store – he was picking up those groceries that we needed for our traditional Christmas morning breakfast and some whipping cream for my daughters cream puffs… we drank the first pint along with some hot chocolate and crème de menthe – so he calls

“There’s a problem”

“Oh” (me imagining they are out of whipping cream or some other item we can find a substitution for)

“I broke my wrist”


“I slipped on black ice getting out of the truck and I broke my wrist”

So I could go on with the conversation, but that would be boring for you, and requires all that extra punctuation for me… I offered to go get him, he insisted he could drive, he drove home, I ran out to the truck and drove him to the emergency room where we stayed until nearly midnight (and we were “fast tracked”). Keeping in mind that he didn’t say “I think I broke my wrist” or “I might have broken my wrist” – he said “I broke my wrist” – I knew it was broken, I just wanted to get him taken care of and out of pain.

My kids (okay, Our kids) were FANTASTIC! After I hung up the phone and before he pulled up, they had an ice pack, my shoes, my purse, my son was out shoveling again… then after I left, the three of them made the cookies and the pizelles (Italian Christmas Cookies) which are NOT easy (until you’ve made several hudred, then it’s like anything else good – time consuming, but not hard). They made hundreds of each, and they didn’t make a hideous mess of the kitchen either. Then they helped me over the next two days with wrapping and packing and making fudge and cleaning.

Then without warning, without hesitation, on December 26th, they turned into someone else’s children, and my husband (who had been trying some to help those two days) became the “I Can’t” man (waving casted arm in air). I had no recourse but to become Lois from Malcolm in the Middle – bitching all the time, laying guilt trips, grunting, moaning, and even being nasty to the cripple… really, he can drive this huge four wheel drive truck through the most hideous streets and snow potholes, he can work all day, he can wipe his own ass (I assume, I haven’t actually seen him do it, but he doesn’t smell like shit), he can shower (again an assumption, he wraps the cast in plastic and turns on the water and doesn’t smell bad), he can pet the dogs, use the t.v. remote, play playstation, eat, etc… but he can’t put the mustard away because he “can’t twist, the doctor told him not to”, and he can’t help cook bacon (a decidedly one handed job) – I work with amputees on occasion, and I wanted to tell him they can do these things and they don’t even have the broken arm with some usable fingers to help out. And the kids… well you know teenaged excuses “I did the dishes last time” “she never does it” “I shoveled at Grandma’s” “it’s not my mess”… It’s enough to make a fairly sane, lucid, level-headed woman like myself become an animal worthy of billing as one of Godzilla’s Foes (remember Mothra???).

So, no whining indeed.

Oh but I must add an addendum. The Colorado snowstorms had the most delightful affect on people, I don’t remember cheerier people out Christmas shopping, all helping each other, smiling, saying excuse me and I’m sorry, offering suggestions for substitutions in the bare-shelved grocery store – really a beautiful Christmas in that regard – I want to thank each stranger that was so nice and joyful around me during this time.

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