Thursday, February 18, 2010


Last week a couple of my teeth started feeling sore and loose. Because of my chronic health problems my teeth are held together with smoke and mirrors so this was not stunning. But it seemed odd that it was these teeth since they had never had problems. And why so suddenly? And why did ibuprofen do nothing when it would usually help a bit?

Then came shooting pains into those teeth. And my jaw. And my brain. AND MY SOUL. Crippling pain. Pain that made my eyes water. After the drama last year I still haven't replaced my dentist and I kept cursing myself.

Late night pain leads to googling (at least for me, do you other people do something else) and I figured out that oh it wasn't my teeth it was my jaw. And it was muscle spasms probably caused by TMJ syndrome. In a weird way I am lucky, I treat people with TMJ all the time so I started doing self massage and oh it hurt and it helped for a while but it would just hurt again after half an hour.

Saturday my parents took the kiddo because J and I were going to a Presidents of the United States concert. I was taking a lot of ibuprofen and using (this is sad) aspercream and it helped a bit and the massage would work. But I was pitiful. But I didn't want to stay home. Do you know how often I get out people? NEVER. I never go out. I never socialize with adults. And I wasn't going to have to get up with the child in the morning.

After watching me wince every time I moved J does what he always does--made my healthcare decisions for me, "Babe, you are going to drink the pain away."

I really wasn't going to. But even though the doors opened at eight, the PUSA didn't go on until ELEVEN. I don't ever stay up to eleven. And they threw us out of the adjoining bar three minutes after we got new drinks (and the bartender was not skimping though at downtown prices he shouldn't be). So basically I don't drink anymore and I did the equivalent of like five shots in fifteen minutes?

I did not feel pain and J was driving and the show was brilliant. We had a grand time with our friends and indulged in Dick's deluxes on the way home and then passed out COLD at home.

Best yet, we both got to sleep in until ten the next morning.

Sadly, the pain was back and getting worse (which is weird for muscle spasms) so off to the doctor I went Monday. Diagnosis was TMJ as expected. My mouth wouldn't open far enough but he guess that my jaw was dislocated slightly. He gave me muscle relaxers and steroids (no pain pills sadly, tweakers ruin everything). And the chiro I worked for tried to adjust it.

Y'all. This is crazy soul sucking pain. My face is bruised and swollen. It's getting better but not like BETTER. Tomorrow, I will go for another adjustment but in the meantime I am on a soft foods diet and whining a lot.

If you hear any weird grinding noises from this northwest corner of the country--no worries. It is just my jaw.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Yes, Anything With Sour Cream

When I was pregnant I would think idly of a tasty food, let it roll around in my brain for a while, until it became an obsession. The world would end unless I got a fried fish sandwich from Emmet Watson's or bacon and corn chowder or oatmeal scotchie cookies. Nothing else would taste right until I had procured that food. And it had to be fast.

I would blame the hormones but I am doing that again. Except it really isn't eating the food. It is cooking.

I have long cruised recipe sites. I am always looking for something tasty to make. And J is trying (succeeding) to lose weight so even though he isn't dieting I am trying to find more tasty chicken dishes to make. And I will come upon something that looks good and I cannot stop thinking about it. Sometimes it isn't really appropriate--like it is a huge meal or something fancy or whatever--but it is like my Lizard Brain cannot let go. I just keep coming back to that item and feel compelled to make it.

I always liked cooking, and really love to make something that other people enjoy. When I worked crazy hours I just didn't have the time for it. We relied on the broiler and canned vegetables and honestly it was probably healthier overall. But now! Braised meats and stews and something wondrous done with chicken thighs. Roasted vegetables with sea salt. Burritos with two kinds of beans and spinach. Anything involving sour cream (he isn't dieting!).

I hardly recognize myself.

Except the weird obsessions. That feels very familiar.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

Assholes and Binkies

I recognize that when you have a small child the harpies feed on you a bit. I expected little old ladies to nag me about putting a hat on the baby. I expected to have people glare when she shrieks in the grocery store.

I didn't expect to get so much bullshit because my kid uses a binky.

People wig about the binky. People that surprise you that they give a shit about a binky. I have taken more abuse about binkies than about dressing her too boyishly. I get more comments about the binky than I do about the damn leash I've used in busy places which surprises me because I feel vaguely bad about the leash (even though she likes it and we only use it when it is a safety issue) and I feel nary a pang about the binky.

It doesn't impact her speech, her teeth or her damn humanity so why do I get so much shit about the binky?

What it does provide is comfort. She is two. She is home most of the time. She is not terribly crazy about new situations. So she mainly uses the binky to sleep and when she is nervous. Walking around at home? She has largely given it up. I won't take away her security blanket and I won't take away her binky. I want her to feel comfortable. I want her to work past her anxiety. I am a fairly anxious person myself and let me tell you there are times when I have to do things that I am afraid of that rubbing a soft blanket on my face or sucking on a pacifier would feel wonderful. As an adult I am supposed to be beyond that but a two year old? They are still learning to cope. They are learning to engage with the world and well I don't really want her to learn that engaging with the world means being afraid and having people do everything they can to make you MORE afraid.

I also know my kid. So you are right, most kids are ready to give them up at a year old. And maybe your child was struggling to speak because of the binky. Or maybe your kid needed the cold turkey approach because otherwise it would have been more difficult for him. I don't know your kid. I know mine. And mine speaks very well (and does not shut up even with the thing in her mouth). And to take it away from her right now would just reinforce the urge that is driving her towards it in the first place. She does these things in her own time. I honestly think that she will wake up one day and not want it anymore. But I suppose if that doesn't happen we will sort it out. I am her mother. That is what I do.

So, you, judgement harpy who pointed at her face and muttered "DEVIL'S TEAT." You are the asshole here. Why don't you deal with your child and I will deal with mine. See, I thought maybe your son was having a bad day. Maybe he was hungry or tired. Maybe he is developmentally delayed. Or maybe he was just grouchy and is normally delightful. I was cutting him eight hundred kinds of slack even though he pushed my daughter out of the way to get at the slide. I asked him to wait his turn just as I ask that of my daughter. Of course he is a kindergartner picking on a baby. . .So you stop worrying about my daughter's binky and I won't give his shove another thought. I am pretty sure both things will be grown out of shortly.

Of course you will still be an asshole.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010


I do remember life before I had a Costco membership. I think I felt sorry for people who needed one. Rolled my eyes at my mother who went on and on about saving three cents a gallon on gas (ok I still do this even though they save more than that now because buying gas at Costco requires more organization and planning than I can muster). I thought Costco was for people with Duggar sized families, a real thirst for vats of canola oil and bunkers to store all of that toilet paper.

My mom bought us a membership for Christmas/Winter gift buying holiday of your choice. We gamely went and got our photos taken. I greeted the return of the Costco hot dog (my Saturday errand ritual with my dad for years) with the warmth of an old friend. I still didn't know what I would buy there. As it turned out, that first year not so much. Razor blades, toilet paper (there is something wondrous about buying toilet paper maybe once a year--it frees up so much time). We didn't really get Costco.

When we moved we bought furniture at the Costco Home store (which is now gone and that is a sad sad thing) and things picked up. Books, socks, a new phone, a steam mop. Costco. We'd renewed our membership with our own money--twice.

Then we had a baby. Now we are cooking with wholesale prices!

We don't even use disposable diapers but we still saved a bundle. Wipes. Organic baby food. Formula. Baby sleepers (5.99 for Carters YO). As she got older my list got more surreal. Below are things that I now buy at Costco and feel, deep in my soul, a little brainwashed about. But I am saving money and my soul loves that.

Mushrooms . . .ok clearly produce of every kind. It is a good quality, excellent prices and yes I do buy local stuff when I can get it but the budget can only support so much and well there are no bananas grown in Everett, WA
Milk (I think I could pay for my membership on the milk savings alone)
Cheese (I know I could with cheese)
Meat (we bought a chest freezer and yes I buy Duggar quantities of meat now)
Baby/kid clothes (pajamas, jeans, dresses, they have everything if you look)
Socks for the whole family
Chicken Nuggets
Macaroni and Cheese
Peanut Butter
Diet Coke
Down comforter
Canned veggies
Baby shampoo

Can't you just see me? My Honda laden down like a camel with all my bulk wholesale merchandise? I am the one who is feeding her kid every sample in the store--oh wait that is all of us. Oh well, I am the one who is talking herself out of another box of Kraft Dinner--we still have half a cube.