using the semicolon


When one becomes a person of a certain age, one sees their doctor more regularly…unless one is my darling husband who would rather hide from what the good doctor is recommending for him these days. He’ll wait until he’s bothered by his daily hacking-up-a-lung cough that becomes even worse than it already is or until his wife’s nagging becomes unbearable. Me, on the other hand, I do try to see my doctor annually and not just when I am sick. Just trying to walk the nurse talk of the importance of maintaining one’s good health, building trust with a good doctor-patient relationship and stuff like that there. So today was the day. The good doctor sits down with me going over the results of the physical exam and ordered tests. The physical exam…perfect. Cardiac function…perfect. Lab work…in his words his 30-something patients should have labs like these.

“You’re a perfect patient!”, he concludes.

“Yes, except for the depression, anxiety and panic attacks.”, I answer back.

“Yes, there’s that.”

And that is why I use a semicolon all the time.

A semicolon represents a sentence the author could have ended, but chose not to. Every single day of my life I choose to use a semicolon.

No, not usually with my writing. I know my use of punctuation could easily be criticized…and sometimes is. Have you seen how often I over-use an ellipsis?

No, the semicolon here represents the fact that my story isn’t over yet. Far from it. I am my author and the sentence is my life and as long as I choose to live this life I will choose to use the semicolon…every day.

Every.

Single.

Day.

Some days it is a struggle. Some days it can be almost a knock down, drag out fight. The fight to choose the semicolon, to keep myself grounded in the love others have for me instead of the hate I feel for myself, remains a struggle…and one I don’t always share for so many reasons. I hate being viewed as weak or less than or even just as someone who struggles. I hate being compared to the parent who far too many times in my lifetime tried to put a period at the end of her sentence. I can imagine her pain and her struggle. I lived survived a lot of it with her. It was so hard for her. So very hard. Still, no child should ever be the one to call for help because mommy won’t wake up…again. No child should ever have to try and get her younger siblings out of the house before the ambulance comes to protect them from seeing mommy this way. No child should have to run down the hill that was Davis Lane to flag down the ambulance because you can’t see that gravel road very well in the dark of night. Add that to the many reasons why I, every day, consciously choose to use a semicolon.

I should be stronger than this.

I should be braver than this.

I will always have anxiety. I will struggle from time to time with debilitating depression. I will sometimes become frozen in panic for no rational reason whatsoever. I will, at times, choose poor coping mechanisms. But I will always choose the semicolon.

My story isn’t over yet.

The Semicolon Project 416

pinteresting and more


Perfect for poolside…if I had a pool; or if my hot tub was working and not dismantled and just an empty shell as it has been for weeks now. Ahem, darling husband.

So there have been a few tornado watches and warning here in our neck of the woods. Yes, Northern Cali experiences tornadoes! People often forget that NorCal gets tornadoes. In fact, the only reports of tornadoes in the US on Wednesday, March 26 were from our area. But because everyone believes them to be rare, warnings sent out via text and phone just don’t get the respect they should in these here parts. Which means we get to see some pretty amazing pictures and videos like this.

Whoa, indeed!

Math nerds, mark your calendars.

Actually, I imagine that the math nerds have known about this a long time ago. The rest of us mere mortals are just now catching up.

For each petal on the shamrock
This brings a wish your way -
Good health, good luck, and happiness
For today and every day.
~ Author Unknown ~

It’s even lovelier around my neck.

I want to be this awesome when I am 97.

And here I was all ready to write something thoughtful and eloquent about motherhood and Gwyneth Paltrow when Sarah of the Sticky Fingers Brigade did it for me.

Not one mother out there has never said (or thought to herself) some snarky, mean thought about other mothers doing it wrong, meaning not the way we are doing this mothering thing that we do so maybe we should chalk up Gwynnie’s thoughts to her doing just that. We can then smirk and shake our heads over her being a lot clueless and get back to trying to do our very best being the mothers that we are.

For those days when I have nothing to wear.

Thank you Caleb White for your service to us all.

Yes, thanks to Self and their mistake and pretty lame apology we discovered something pretty awesome that is Glam Runner because tutus are pretty damn awesome.

Even more better was that Self followed up on that apology by changing the conversation and keeping it positive.

You can support Girls on the Run — the charity on whose board Monika sits — and UCSD’s neurooncology lab where she is being treated, or you can go for a run tomorrow morning wherever you live, in a tutu or anything else you like. #ChangeTheConversation  #KeepingItPositive

 

 

 

no Self, you are lame!


#tutusrock is trending today and here’s why:

From Glam Runner’s Facebook page-

Excited to see our tutus in SELF Magazine … but shocked to see that running tutus are classified as lame. Especially considering the fact that this picture is from last year’s LA Marathon when Glam Runner founders Tara and Monika ran together as superheroes … because Monika was recently diagnosed with brain cancer and was running a marathon in the middle of a year of chemo.

Never mind that Self is a few years behind the trend, this BS meter is what’s really lame.

Because runners do run through the city wearing tutus…

and in Central Park.

They even put on a tutu to run their very first half marathon on their 48th birthday. Yeah they do!

Tutus are even spotted running in the mud.

Yes, Self, you are correct. Sparkly, frou-frou skirts don’t make us run faster. We already knew that. But they often make running fun. They empower us. They make us smile. They make other people smile.

 

photo from Glam Runner

The real story behind this photo is not that tutus are a “lame” fad. Despite what SELF Magazine published, it is not that “people think these froufrou skirts make you run faster.”

The real story behind this photo is that Tara and Monika, pictured here, are board members for Girls on the Run San Diego. They founded Glam Runner, a business that sells running tutus, to raise funds for the council. They are dedicated to helping grow the program in their community. The real story behind this photo is that the awesome duo were running the LA Marathon while Monika was receiving chemotherapy treatments for brain cancer.

One of our core values is to stand up for yourself and others, so we are standing up for Tara and Monika, as well as every other runner who has finished a race feeling awesome in a tutu.

Unfortunately, when Self reached out to Monika Allen for permission to use her photo in the April 2014 issue, they didn’t bother to get the story behind the photo, why they were wearing tutus dressed as Wonder Woman and Super Woman. I wonder if they even noticed that it says “Die, Tumor, Die” on Tara’s race bib. But the story wouldn’t have fit well in their mocking and declaration that running while wearing a tutu is lame. Of course that fits in perfectly with Self Magazine’s mission to help us love our healthier, happier, more confident selves; right along with their photoshopped covers.

The thing is, Self, the running community is tight knit, accepting, encouraging and we stick up for one another. Whenever one is down, another one is there to pick them up. Girls compete against each other, women and men empower each other. Rather than poke fun at women (and men) wearing tutus and running through Central Park, perhaps Self should be celebrating the fact that they out there being active, striving for goals that helps them become their all around best. Perhaps when Self contacted Monika through GlamRunner, they should have taken the time to look through their site a little more closely and see who and what they are all about. Then maybe Luci Danziger, Editor In Chief of Self, would have never had to apologize in the first place; because she would have known what Monika has been through. Yes, it indeed was an error, a stupid mistake and it never should have been run in the first place.

That, Self, is what is lame this month!

the awesomeness of hugs


I’m not much of a hugger.

Analyze that.

But true story, I’m not. Still I have learned to try to love hugs. And I do. I celebrate them.

Comforting hugs when you have had an eye-twitching, craptastic day.

Hugs that you enjoy with your Grandmom.

Hugs that you enjoy with your favorite cousin and your favorite Uncle Jesse.

Hugs you share with your favorite little brother never fail to warm your heart and make you smile because he is a hugger.

And who doesn’t love birthday hugs shared with your best friend at Disneyland?

Then there is one of the bestest hugs I have enjoyed recently which I do not have a picture of. You’ll just have to trust me that it was one of the best ever…a hug shared with one of my co-workers…a co-worker whom I always hug when I see her because that is what we do before we start a night in NICU-Land. A little more than a year ago she left the unit to fight a fierce fight. Honestly cancer picked the wrong person to fight with because after all that she has been through and all that she has to live for I knew that it wouldn’t be a fair fight. I knew that it was going to be a great night taking care of the tiny humans whom  I love so much in the NICU when I saw Brenda walk into the unit for the first time in over a year.

We hugged. We cried. We tried to fix our makeup. We laughed. We hugged some more.

I have no photo to share but I can guarantee you that it was a beautiful, wonderful picture that will last forever in my heart and my mind. If you close your eyes right now I bet that you can see it. Amazing, gorgeous! Isn’t it?

I am so unbelievably happy knowing that I can look forward to Brenda’s hugs before night shift in the NICU again.

still not creepy


The night before another procedure to see how well his pituitary gland is functioning with daily human growth hormone injections at Children’s Hospital Central California I found myself regarding his sweet face as he slept.

Of course I take a picture because, please.

Then I look closer at the picture I just took and I see a shadow, a shadow of my little boy growing into a young man. Okay, this might be getting creepy someday very soon.

The procedure went okay after a two hour wait because the nurse who was supposed to initiate it did not come to work due to a family emergency and no one in the department seemed to know that until I stepped out of his room to go get my phone charger out of the car. But after some staffing changes, profuse apologies from Daniel’s endocrinologist, the head of the Endocrinology Department, a few difficult lab draws and then lunch on the Endocrinology Department’s dime because we both had not eaten anything since 8 PM the night before we were done for the day and back on the road for the nearly two hour drive home.

I did my level best not to glance too often in the rear view mirror to peek at my sleeping man-child.