You had me at special snowflake.

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In today’s post I would like to channel my Inner Jim. That’s my dad.

And I would also like to talk about alcoholism.

So, YAY, this post is going to be INTENSE!

Why, you ask?

1. My dad is kinda intense. He likes to grip you by the elbow, in that way that makes the entire side of your body go kinda limp and numb, and he looks you in the eye and says things like, “How are you, REALLY?” and if you lie at all you feel like God might smite you, because God and Jim are *crosses fingers* like THIS.

2. Alcoholism. Nobody attempts that subject without a bit of intensity. I mean, we don’t just say things like, “Hmmmm, I think I might be coming down with a bit of alcoholism today. But, it’s just a tickle at the back of my throat. I’ll just get some rest and I’ll be fine!”

3. I’m in a really weird mood so there’s that.

I am also linking up with my favorite end of the week people: Five Minute Friday! and today’s theme??

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Ok, here’s what I know:

  1. My dad would tell me (as would all the other addicts in recovery) that I am not a special snowflake. I’m no different than anyone else. I have no special backstory that makes my sad issues any more special or sad.
  2. This kinda is a bummer because ever since I was knee-high to a very special grasshopper I KNEW I WAS SO VERY DIFFERENT FROM EVERYONE. This explains so much.
  3. And, I am. But also, I’m not. So you know, not confusing at all.
  4. This does not have to be figured out. Really, the only answer to all this is understanding who Jesus is and trucking with him.
  5. Different is good. It means I can wear socks that don’t match and I tend to always (nearly always) break into dance whenever I visit my kids’ school and they stop me at the door with the camera thing. Because the office administrators really need to see me doing the Running Man.
  6. Different, in terms of alcoholism? Not good. I am not different. My addiction and recovery trucks along fine with the men and women, young, old, black, white, green, pink, tall, short, big, small, cat lover, cat hater, educated, street smart, rich, poor, faith-filled, faith-poor, lost, found, tattooed, pierced, pristine, married, single, somewhere in between, person who walks in the doors with the coffee pot on the door.
  7. Everyone should be so lucky as to have an Inner Jim. Just FYI.

I am reminded of this every time I attend a meeting, and I remember the words of one of my favorite old-timers there, “Mo.” He would say, “I’m no better than anyone else. And I’m no worse.”

He was right. And here is the thing – doesn’t this also apply to our faith? Doesn’t it also sound a little bit like how Jesus wants us to live?

I mean, we are all in recovery from something. Or we should be. Right?

Right. galatians-3-28.jpg

 

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Learn Your Place.

 

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I don’t remember when I learned this phrase. “Learn your place.” It isn’t the most pleasant. It doesn’t sound all that kind. It smushes down, instead of raises up.

It says, “Figure out where you fit and then sit there. And don’t raise a fuss.”

My dad is a fuss-maker. He never learned his place. He is a farmer’s kid, raised in Missouri, worked hard his whole life. Attended night school. Ended up in a job that was way beyond what he ever expected simply because… well I think he was replacing a guy that left and he was the only one around and so, boom, he’s doing a job he doesn’t really know how to do.

And he never once blinked an eye. I think that’s because he never learned his place.

Also, now he makes more money than some small countries. And he lives in the same house and still wears clothes that were made in the 1970’s. I am not kidding. Look for him mowing the lawn and there’s some shorts there that might have celebrated the bicentennial.

He doesn’t like a fuss about him. But he is a fuss-maker.

I wish I could be more like him in this regard. If there is an injustice or a problem or someone who needs some truth directed his way? My dad is the man for the occasion.

Yet, also, he is so soft hearted. But you would never know it under all the John Wayne.

I have been thinking how Dad never really gives in. This world says so many different things – “Adjust. Do enough to get by. Just give in. Don’t shake it up. Don’t ripple those waters. Give up on your idealogy – it’s useless. While you’re at it, give up in general – all is lost.”

And so on.

I think Dad hears this a lot and each and every time he says, “No.” Sometimes that is paired with other specific and very zingy words, but we’ll spare those here.

You see, he never learned his place. God said instead, “You’re with me, son. That’s your place.”

My dad has courage.

And so does my mom, for being married to him all these years. But, don’t even get me started there.

Wow, this post was going to be about something else, but look where it ended?

With my dad. Whom I love. He is my hero.

Linking up with Five Minute Friday today. And yes, the theme?

 

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Common

Hooking up with my happy place – Five Minute Friday.

The theme today?

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Ok, it’s totally obvious that I could go for the higher ground here. “Common.” Like in:

Common ground.

or

Common Cause.

or

Common sense.

or even, if you are me, talking to my kids EVERY the morning,

“COMMON! We’re late!” (har har har. Clever momsie)

But, as I have already established: I VERY OFTEN AVOID THE HIGHER GROUND, PEOPLE. I AM A LOW GROUND KINDA GIRL.

So, today we’re gonna talk about:

THE BLEEPING COMMON COLD.

My husband is sick. And before I say ONE more word, I would like to provide a quick disclaimer:

I really do love my husband. And, pretty sure, he loves me too. We’re married, you know. So, that means, we’re in it for the long haul. We’re on the same team. We are in it to win it. I don’t know how many more cliches I can throw at you before I am penalized, so I’ll just end here: I asked him, “How often can I throw snark your way on my blog?” And he was all, “Darling, I love you . I know you must write your feelings, because feelings, and airing them for thousands, is really important to you. I am here for you. I am your snark-ee. I believe in you, my dove. Besides, I totally deserve it, every time.”

Disclaimer to the disclaimer: MMmmkay. That’s not exactly what he said.

Ok, so back to this:

My husband is sick.

Oh holy kleenex, get a grip, man.

He has a cold. And this is what he does: He puts on this huge hoodie and pulls the hood up all over his poor smushy cold face, which kinda looks like this:article-2110001-1205B578000005DC-592_306x423.png

Yes. It’s a dog. In a hoodie. Very, very close in its likeness to the hubster, I promise.

He kinda slump-walks around, with his hood all pulled down, and sadness just seems to follow him, like a germy, despairing cloud. He flops down. He sighs. I follow him with hand sanitizer and I have been known to surreptitiously spray the couch with Lysol as soon as he gets up. He turned, when he heard the spraying sound, but since he is SO VERY SICK he turned all slowwwwwwwly. Kinda Vincent Price style. Therefore I had plenty of time to hide the Lysol can behind my back and offer him some soup. He kind of squinted at me, like the cold was causing an onset of sudden blindness, which totally makes sense. Whenever I get a cold I lose my eyesight as well.

But somehow I still manage to walk around the whole house and do laundry. Also cook. And go to the store. And clean the bathrooms. While blind.

I do these things, WHILE I AM SICK AT THE SAME TIME.

Anyhow, the husband has now realized he left his water glass outside in his car. I know this because he has just croak-whispered to me,

“Cup… in car… must have water…” And then he curled up in a germy fetal ball on the kitchen floor. One of the kids stepped over him without even a comment. And guys? I so would have offered to get him the cup. I LIVE for getting the cup.

Like, seriously. Marriage law #345 = YOU GO GET THE CUP.

However. I had my hand stuck up inside a whole chicken. I realize this takes the blog for a hard veer, but I was making chicken soup for my plague husband. This involves getting really, really personal with a chicken. Like, you and that chicken are going to really get to know each other, and the clean up afterwards is rather extensive. It’s all so gross.

And so, as the husband was gasping his last breaths to me, I slowly turned, all Vincent Price, with a chicken-hand. And I gestured:

“Hold on just a few minutes, dear. I have a chicken-hand.” And as I gestured, the little floppy chicken wings seemed to actually point at him.

It was clear to both me and husband that the chicken was on my side.

Because, also? I was kinda sick of the sick husband. Just a little. I had grown weary of him sounding like Johnny Cash whenever he spoke, and how he seemed to be dying all the time. I get sickness, I do. But there is another law of marriage:

Marriage Law 346: IF YOU ARE A GROWNUP YOU GET ONE DAY OF BEING REALLY SICK. AFTER THAT YOU ARE ON YOUR OWN. I HAVE CHILDREN TO FEED.

Soooo. The visual of me with a chicken ON my hand startled the husband enough that he actually went out to the car to get the blessed cup. And, when he came back, he had donned his sunglasses. Which made him look kind of like this, minus the mustache. Unabomber-sketch.png

And that’s when I started referring to the husband as “Ted” for the rest of the afternoon.

I know. The snark is strong in this one.

The common cold. It will not break this marriage, to be sure. But it will give me lots of material to blog about. Thank you, Ted, for that.

 

*Final disclaimer: No husbands were harmed in the making of this post. They were brought soup with saltines, and cuddled with on the couch, and they got to watch football for hours on end, and there was ice cream. And I know I used the “they” like I have multiple husband and holy matrimony, ain’t nobody got time for that.

And also, I have a cold now, so there’s that.