I took Max in to an allergist. I just wanted to know what exactly was up with the food allergies. So, we get a name, make an appointment, and go. Max and I decide Ricardo should go too. I know what’s coming _ the prickly test up and down his back. And I’ve been the mean mom who dragged them to all those immunizations and penicillin shots and all. So, you know, I don’t want him to miss out on ALL the fun. Ricardo obliges and goes with us.
We get there and they do a complete check up on him and ask me all kinds of crazy questions. We review his cough he gets. I explain that I’m more concerned with the food allergies and that I get it with the whole seasonal nasal/croup allergies. That’s when I was corrected.
I need to go on record, as I was corrected about croup. My awesome MIL suggested one time in the midst of a pretty good croup gig that it was asthma. I might have, under extreme duress of gasps for air and barking, snapped and said fairly rudely, “It’s NOT ASTHMA!” or something like that. Perhaps.
Well here’s my public apology: I was wrong and you are right. Per the doctor, they don’t call it croup after a certain age. “Oh really? What age?”
“Uh, 3 years old.”
What the hell, y’all? All these other doctors have been feeding me info and never correcting me. Max is 8 years old now!
Okay, fine. We cleared that up. But if I’m admitting I’m wrong, I want my co_pay back.
But wait, if it’s seasonal asthma, then guess who needs an inhaler just in case? Great. Okay, I can do that. One for me, one for the school. Got it.
Next comes the allergy test. You know, the dreaded one. Up and down his back. The only way he allowed this was that a) Ricardo has joined the party, and 2) he gets to take pictures of it with his new camera. Nice. Because boys think that stuff is cool it turns out. It’s like a science experiment. Well, it IS a science experiment. It’s just on his back.
Max is way too calm and unbothered for Ricardo to witness this. I was hoping for much more wiggling, protest, and pathetic wailing. With that Ricardo will experience my parental emotional pain and anguish of watching my poor kid suffer. But this day, Max bucks up. Oh sure, when I have a witness, don’t deliver kid. Whatever.
It turns out that Max is allergic to all fish and shellfish. That’s pretty much it. We think he’s allergic to dates too, but there’s not a tester for that today. So, they just tell me not to feed him dates. Sound medical advice. Again, can I get my co_pay back? We are cautioned that since he has a fish allergy, we need to take it pretty seriously.
Next thing I know, the allergist explains Max needs a seasonal prescription, an inhaler, and an EPI PEN. What just happened?
Well, my suspicions were just confirmed, I guess. The nurse comes in with a grocery bag of the items and walks us through step by step on how to use the inhaler and the epi pen. She makes sure Max is paying attention and taking this seriously, because at current, he’s maintaining at our request of distraction _ playing angry birds on his ipod. She then explains to me that this can be overwhelming and there is a dvd on how to operate the EPI pen.
Ricardo and I think it’s overkill, but I listen to all the instructions and take the stuff to the school nurse when I drop Max off. And that’s when the nurse says, “Okay Max, you know to not eat the chicken nuggets, right?” Uh, what? She explains the nuggets are apparently cooked in the same frying oil as the fish sticks. At school. How is that even possible?
Restaurants cross_contaminate fryers as well. So, this is about to get really tricky. Now I’m a little worried. So far, Max hasn’t so much as needed a Benadryl. He knows what to stay away from and that he can’t fool me, broccoli and spinach are not on the list of allergies.
I realize that Max’s food allergies are not as severe as others.
Thank goodness he doesn’t have a peanut allergy. Although, the other day, he ate such a giant wad of peanut butter that he started gagging on it and had to spit it out in the sink. Someone in this house that rhymes with Bicardo taught the kids at an early age that a spoonful of peanut butter would get rid of hiccups. The kids now fake hiccups and manage to sculpt a half cup of peanut butter on to the spoon.
So, we’re working on table manners, portions, and no seafood in the house.
Do your kids have allergies? How do y’all deal?
That’s how I roll.
This weekend JulzHOLLA! and I did the Omaha Women’s Triathlon.
I’m not much of a feminist. Kinda liked being sort of pregnant I guess. But really, I try to maintain being a humanist more than feminist. So, that I’m attending a Women’s Triathlon, well, I’m certain it’s my only feminist movement. Let me explain. Women’s tris are like the bras we wear _ supportive in a comfortable environment.
There’s a couple of guys we’ve met while doing all these triathlons…we ARE ON SEASON 3, you know! And the guys weren’t able to do this triathlon. Cuz they’re guys. But they showed up and volunteered. They helped us out of the water and unzipped our wetsuits. Which by the way, is quite a task. I’m sure they did it so they could say, “Hey, today I unzipped 400 ladies’ zippers.” Still, in a co_ed triathlon, no one helps you with your wet suit. But these guys did. And they were so encouraging each time I swam, biked or ran by them. So, thank you to all the men who made the triathlon so fun and easier. It really made a difference know there was a triathlon in the area y’all could have gone and done that day, but you stayed in Omaha and helped us. Thank you.
Which got me to thinking during my run at the tri, do they have Men’s Only triathlons ever? Pretty much no. Gloria Steinem would shut that down for sure. For all the reasons I enjoy the Women’s Triathlons (we’ve done two), I think there should be Men’s Triathlons. Think of how fun the camaraderie and competitiveness would be. They would love it. And I think they should do it. I’ll volunteer. Just let me know.
I’m pretty sure there’s going to be a huge debate and issue over the temperature of the water we swam in. “Who’s the jack wagon who planned an open water swim in Omaha in May?” is probably going to be mentioned more than once. I suppose I should reflect also on who’s the jack wagon who would sign up for an open water swim in May in Omaha. Me, and about 300 others.
I will say, in the future of the Omaha Women’s Triathlon, there should probably be a woman on staff to set it up. The mile of cobblestone to ride our bikes over was the least of our concerns. Which, by the way, men who planned a women’s tri, I’m pretty sure men wouldn’t have risked their balls on that. But whatever.
There was no chocolate or snack of any sort in my swag bag. We got a really nice t shirt, a sampler tube of aquaphor, and a sample packet of biofreeze. That’s it. Aquaphor at a women’s triathlon. Really? If you’re a mom, or have tattoos, or your a mom with tattoos, the aquaphor flows plentiful. Seriously y’all, no snacks in the bag? Not even granola? Instead we got pamphlets on mental health (nice touch since we just got out of a cold lake), vaginal rejuvenation (I’m not even kidding), and plastic surgery. But I thought this triathlon would fix all that? No? Next time pal, just throw in a couple of Snickers bars.
Better yet, the snack tent was a 1/2 mile up hill from the actual finish line and transition area. So no one went to it until it was time to leave. By then, the volunteers were begging us to take as much of the food as we could because no one ate it. Well, that’s because all the bagels, bananas and carb re_load is another triathlon distance away from the finish line. Please let a woman help plan the layout and donations for the swag bag next year, guys.
Ultimately, JulzHOLLA! and I had a great time. We had so much fun showing ourselves once again, that we can do this. I set a goal of under two hours and met it! It’s encouraging me to keep training and keep bettering that time.
We also might have suckered a few fabulous women to do this triathlon with us. Which wasn’t easy considering the lake was so chilly. Either we’re THAT persuasive, or we have friends that are THAT crazy. We are proud of our crazy friends, JC and Wendy! Wendy was sent to me through facebook by a friend from Texas. Well, fine, she was already moving here and my friend hooked us up. I’m so happy to have her as my new pal and in our triathlon circle of goodness. JC won 3rd in her age group and it was her first triathlon, and it was an open water swim.
We got to introduce our new tri pals to some great ladies we’ve collected through triathlons as well.
It’s a wonderful opportunity to get out and do a triathlon, and show your kids you can. As I was stumbling back in, the kids ran off to the side with me. And I found myself mothering while doing a triathlon. “Max, I’m almost finished right down there, meet me down there and we’ll get you a bandaid. I have some in my bag.” I. AM. A. BADASS. MOM. TRIATHLETE.
Here’s what my kids see:
Here we are at the pre_race mandatory meeting. When you’re triathletes like us, you have do attend these very important meetings.
We effn did it…again!
Post Race _ we clean up pretty well, don’t you think?
After that and a nap, JULZHOLLA! took me to the Usher & Akon concert for an early birthday present. I opted to sit down and rest during the slow jamz. I came to watch that guy dance…not the dry humping though. So, I rested my weary quads, back and feet during all that. When he did dance, he wowed me. Akon was fun. I’d say between the both of them, they took their shirts off 10 times. We get it. I had a lot of wardrobe changes that day too.
Usher and Akon draw what seems to be a dual themed audience of two types: women in jeans or women in ho dresses. Our whole group opted for jeans. The closest thing I have to a ho dress these days is my wetsuit. And that was drenched in lake water. Because I’m a Triathlete!
That’s How I Roll.
Song of the day: Top of the World by Dev & The Cataracs (They opened up the concert. Very fun.)
The kids have figured out that if they do field events in Track Club, then they don’t have to run so much. Geniuses. Ricardo and I did the same thing in our track careers. The only difference being, uh, well, Ricardo excelled. Me, well, let’s just say I have a lot of “Spirit Awards”.
Lucy’s decided long jump is good for her. She’s pretty good at it. This year, they are in a new age division and have more options, so Max decided to try high jump.
It helps that Ricardo coaches high jump. Remember this? So, Max not only gets to avoid excessive running drills, and try a new sport, he gets to hang out with his Dad. It’s a win_win_win situation for the kid. I jog while they practice. It’s a big fat fun cardio vascular family event.
The other day at practice, I was jogging by and noticed Max’s perfect form as he jumped. It might be a good time to point out that the last time I high jumped was 7th grade. So, even remembering what perfect form is, well, I don’t. But I’m reminded of it as I watch Max. I mean, yeah, he’s my son and all, and he’s super perfect.
Ricardo sneaks a moment without the kids around to quickly affirm my suspicions, “Baby, he’s got it. The kid’s got it.” Yeah, I thought so.
Since I was out of town last weekend, I missed the actual track meet. But Ricardo kept me posted. It’s usually Ricardo who has to hold me back from building the kids up too much. But he kept texting me and keeping me updated.
In one track meet, Max won his age group. In the time it took to wait for his medal _ which he refused to leave the track meet until he got that darned medal _ Ricardo had deduced that not only had he won the meet _ he was tied for number one….in the nation.
We are so excited for Max. Even Lucy is bragging on him. I am excited to see him jump soon. I find myself in a delicate position to keep him motivated and be proud of himself, and to never be satisfied.
Yesterday he showed his medal to his class. And since I’m ALWAYS up at the school, I was there volunteering, I had to egg the kid on to explain how well he did. Later, when school was out, he had his friend over, and I said,
“Hey, did you tell Johnny about your high jump medal?”
“No. I’d rather not.”
This all makes sense to me as it seems there was a guy at the writer’s retreat, who was so quiet all weekend. But when he went to share his work, it was impeccably brilliant writing. And although it was not a competitive environment at all, everyone sitting there knew it: this guy wins.
You know how there’s trash talkers at any sports game? It’s the quiet ones you should really worry about. This guy walked by all the trash talkers. And then stepped up to the plate and knocked one out of the park.
Ricardo is the same way. As seen here. That seems to be the same type of stellar guy that Max is turning out to be. He’d rather not talk about it and just do it.
I’m a really good trash talker. I mean really good. I may not be able to knock one out of the park, but so far, I breed elite athletes.
That’s how I roll.
Song of the Day: Jump by Van Halen
Well, this is awkward. And yes, that’s how I pack up to go back home.
I embarked on my writing trip this past weekend. I love me a good road trip. I carefully crafted my road trip play list so that I could practice and consider my debut on The Voice. Because I am THAT good when the music is full blast and all the windows are rolled up. I packed twelve cokes, snacks, and 4 suitcases of what would turn out to be not enough clothes and snuck out very early.
At some point in Iowa, I called the kids when they woke up. Max questioned why I HAD to go. Oh look, a little whiny still_tired kid just handed a little guilt to you somewhere next to a corn field while a Ford F_150 passes you. How great is technology now?
I bucked up though and explained that Mommy doesn’t HAVE to do this at all. But I WANT to, and so I’m DOING IT. Mommy’s chasing her dreams.
“It’s like when you leave me and go to Gramma’s for a week. You don’t HAVE to, but you really WANT to. And Mommy really needs to go take some time to write, because she’s really busy at home….”
Long pause for distracted kid to follow. Nice, he calls me out, and conveniently forgets to listen my honest and well crafted response.
“Oh. Maybee is chasing her tail! It’s funny!”
“Don’t forget to take your field trip permission form to school today. Have Daddy look on the refrigerator for that note that explains what Lucy needs to wear to her dance practice. And good luck on your Spelling Test!” But he’d already handed the phone to Ricardo by then.
Aside from forgetting all of my charging wires for my Blackberry and ipod touch, and one slight incident for about an hour where I could swear my trunk was open somewhere in INDIANA _the road trip went well. I pulled over for a lengthy pit stop, found the chargers at Walmart along with lunch.
I pulled over in Indiana to shut the trunk. It’s Ricardo‘s sporty Grand Am and I probably hit the open trunk button with my knee cap _ only boney enough to push a button while bent in a right angle while driving for 10 hours.
10 Hours, Leslie?
That’s right, I’m committed enough to this crazy writing dream to drive 10 hours. I’m also desperate enough to literally buy the time to figure this all out. So, when I arrive, I announce to all the voices in my head, “I’m here to write, Effers.”
I checked in to this beautiful and quaint room in the hosting Bed & Breakfast. It’s just me, so I found the smallest (read: least expensive) room they had. Which translates to not the historical room where Al Capone and his gang are rumored to have had a shoot out. Not that room, with the bullet hole.
The closet has been cleverly converted into a 3/4 bathroom. There’s room for a queen_sized giant fluffy blanketed bed and a travel size tv with cable. It is all I need. I love it. I go to charge the phone and the ipod touch and in my quest to find electrical outlets, I see the TV and cable box are unplugged. Perhaps this is part of the retreat. I wonder if Wade told the B&B to unplug all of the TV’s _ we were here to do writing discovery and TV crushes creativity. Or something like that. Wow, this guy is good already and I haven’t even met him.
And then I get on my knees, find the correct cords, plug in the TV and cable and turn it on.
The next day, after they clean my room, my remote is missing. Wow, this is pretty hard core, Wade. I mean, you discovered I plugged in the TV and I’ve been watching, so you had them take my remote? I can manually turn it on, I realize. But I cannot change the channel. I search all over, in the blankets, in pillow cases. I get on all fours and look under the bed. I deduce that I probably look a lot like a prescription addict checking on grandpa after his hip replacement surgery. I acknowledge my ridiculous desperation, and then carry on in my quest to find the remote. Surely they didn’t just take it? This is some serious writing tough love, Wade.
I can’t fall asleep without the TV on. I opt to go along with Wade’s passive TV intervention. But I can’t sleep. I try to watch the one channel, but it’s a continuous loop of the same news. It’s a lot of Caycee Anthony trial and Nick Cannon’s reporting about the crazy baby photo heist at the hospital. Good idea Nick Cannon, when media tries to get to your babies, leave your wife and kids in the hospital and go straight to Piers Morgan. Great idea.
At midnight, with no TV to soothe me, I remember my hypnotist to sleep app. I’ve tried it before, but Ricardo snoring in the background is literally not recommended in the prologue of the relaxation exercise. But tonight I’m all by myself. Let’s do this. It works. I wake up and watch HLN. again. It’s the same news as last night.
I opt out of say anything at breakfast to anyone else and bust myself. Maybe Wade’s done some serious research and he’s working on each person’s barriers individually. I mean, I am watching the one channel. Kinda feel like I’m cheating. And I don’t wanna out myself. Because I’m waiting for the part where we do some kind of self_discovery and he asks, “What do you think keeps you from writing? What’s your emotional barrier?” I can’t decide to answer “Facebook” or “TV”. Tough call. Maybe I’ll just make something cool like, “Work and my kids.”
But if Wade’s done all this investigating, he’ll know that I work part time on the very couch (office) I write on. And then he’ll probably bring to my attention that my kids go to school for 8 hours a day. Good point. And then he’ll probably also bring it to everyone’s attention that when my kids get home, they go play and usually don’t want much to do with me, Facebook, or TV. Unless it’s Spongebob. So, what’s my problem with finding time again?
Wow, this guy is really good. He’s like the Dr. Phil of writing. But not. I mean, Wade dresses better, has a a baby face and really great hair.
I ask the B&B hostess about the remote. She looks perplexed, but I know what’s up y’all. I’m totally onto this gig. That’s why I’m jacking with you and blaming your maid took not my diamonds, but my remote.
“Must have been balled up with all the bed linens or something.”
Hostess suggests that I grab a remote in one of the empty and open rooms next to me. Good plan. So I do.
Later that day, everyone goes out to dinner, but I have a ridiculous urge to write instead. Write over eat, Leslie? Yeah, I know. Something’s working here. I grabbed some take out. Don’t worry. And then I did something so paramount, I’m still a little creeped out by it, I turned the TV off. And I wrote. Wrote is a funny word. Don’t you think?
I find it amusing that I requested a remote, only to turn off the TV, which I could have done manually. And there’s my mommy tip of the day (week, month, year, ever): Give ‘em what they want, and hope they make the better choice for what they need. Whew. That was deep.
Preparing for an early departure, I said goodnight to my new writing pals, and drifted up to my room to pack. The next morning, I found the remote buried in my wad of a suitcase. Amused, and slightly embarrassed, I realized it wasn’t Wade’s intervention at all, it was my own. Also pretty deep.
I jumped back in my car for the 10 hour trek home and somewhere just before I crossed the state line into Indiana, I thought, “Man, I sure do wish I had TV right now.” Guess my 755 song roadtrip playlist will have to suffice. Because writing while driving isn’t recommended.
I made it home. Also pretty deep thought.
That’s how I roll.
Song of the day: Anything by Amos Lee.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the Momma’s out there. I hope you get everything you wish for _ or atleast a slight moment of guilt free peace, a handmade card, and some kind of breakfast in bed.I have my own wish. I’m certain you’ll share in my quest of dreams.
I cannot sit on the throne of grand flushes without being needed. I think the next time I feel I’m not needed anymore, I’m simply going to go to the bathroom and sit. I really don’t remember doing this to my mom. I did other things, but not the bathroom interruption gig. I bet she begs to differ…
I realize it’s probably bad mommy blogging practice to rant about my own personal bathroom time. But I’m feeling a resounding message here. I’m certain (hoping) I’m not alone in this desperation to have my one reasonable alone time be in the bathroom. There’s two things that apparently get my children to pay attention to me: talk on the phone or go to the bathroom.
The other day I was watching an Erma Bombeck video. And as brilliant as she was, I still to this day defend that it’s just as hard for Father’s out there. If you’re a good one. Clearly, I’m married to a good one. Since the day we checked in to the hospital to have the babies, I have witnessed Ricardo be treated as a second_hand parent. It breaks my heart as he is an absolute first_class parent and a hands_on Dad. So, sometimes, I don’t think it’s fair that “Being a Mom is an unpaid full time job” is a common phrase. The way Ricardo does it, “Being a PARENT/DAD is an unpaid full_time job”. He is there 100%, just as much as me. Sometimes more.
That is, until I sit on the porcelain throne. There are only two things in our house that Ricardo is typical man about and I also somewhat resent. Number one _ he never answers the phone if it’s not for him. Caller i.d. really isn’t helping. And number two _ pun intended _ he can sit on the throne uninterrupted for extremely long uninterrupted periods of time. I’m jealous. I’ll admit it.
The other morning, we’re doing the routine of getting the kids ready for school. The kids are pretty responsible and taking care of their own thing when I realize I need to make a pit stop. I mentally resolve that I should wait until the kids have left for school. But my body suggests that maybe since the kids are getting themselves ready, they’ll stay busy and leave me alone for me to uh, go ahead and make that pit stop now. I oblige said body’s request and go up to my own room, in my own bathroom and shut my own door.
Now, I know y’all don’t need details. My body as a mother is well_trained in this department. We have no time to stop and sit. So, it’s not like this morning segment is an extensive timely adventure is all I’m saying. It may well be the single thing I’m fast and efficient about.
So, of all the times for my kids to need me with something very urgent _ well, there’s barely enough time for the opportunity for them to even interrupt. And yet…
As soon as I sit, the phone rings. And it rings. And rings. This is part of the morning routine. We all know it’s the neighbor kid calling to see if Max and Lucy are walking or riding to school. She calls each day. But today, I am on the pot. Lucy is in her room drying her hair. I have no clue where Max is. I yell to Ricardo _ because I know he’s assessed the caller i.d. and that it’s not for him _ “ANSWER THE PHONE PLEASE!”
But it continues to ring. “I. AM. IN.THE.BATHROOM. PLEASE. ANSWER. THE. pause to insert your own descriptive word here PHONE. PLEASE.”
I hear Ricardo pick it up, and hang it up _ it rang too long and the kid hung up when it went to voicemail. And then he shouts back up at me, “I couldn’t get to a phone in time, the one in front of me _ it’s battery was dead.”
Meanwhile, Lucy has shut off her hair dryer. So, from the bathroom, I delegate “Lucy call Jennifer. She just called. You need to call her back and tell her you’re walking to school.”
But now she can’t find a phone that is charged. Mind you, the child has bounded down the stairs right past her father, grabbed the uncharged phone, and then once she has realized the phone doesn’t work, what does she do? She bounds right back up the stairs to me in the bathroom to solve this mystery.
By then I was done with my business, but felt the need to just take a moment and reclaim my interrupted bathroom time. Wash my face. And make my point.
“I AM IN THE BATHROOM.”
“But the phone doesn’t work.”
“Do you think DADDY could probably help you with that!?”
“Oh. I guess so.” She replied with a ‘Wow, I never thought of that.’ tone.
And so be it. Daddy helped her once she asked. Because he’s a good dad and 100% hands_on parent.
I’ve taken time to reflect on how this all happened. It starts when they’re young, and you don’t want to take your eyes off them. And then, at some point, you’re brave enough to shut the door, but their little fingers wiggle under the door, “Mommy, are you in there?” And then I engage in conversation. Perhaps, just maybe, it’s my own doing. I’ve set this precedence.
Today, I noted Max was in the shower and Lucy was drying her hair. I had a good two minutes to myself. Sure enough the hair dryer stopped. Lucy needed to tell me something very important right away. And you know what, I actually caught myself responding, “Well, you can wear your blue butterfly shirt by I don’t know where the skirt that matches it…wait. Just wait a second. I. AM. IN. THE. BATHROOM.”
She kept talking.
I repeated _ an attempt to retrain her…and me…”I.AM.IN.THE.BATHROOM. You’ll need to wait a second.”
A slight pause on confusion in me claiming my liberation from bathroom officing and then the hair dryer went back on.
It’s good to be needed, but I’m going to reclaim my uh, throne. It’s a Mother’s Day gift to me. Happy Mother’s Day, Mom. Just for you, I promise to not interrupt your bathroom time. But only for Mother’s Day.
So is it just me, or is this every Mom’s dream? All my Momma’s out there, give me a shout out. Comment and let me know. Happy Mother’s Day, y’all.
That’s how I roll.
Song of the Day: Right as Rain by Adele