cool pick of the week

If you’re me today, you are wearing purple because today is Spirit Day and it is just one day to put it out there that you don’t tolerate bullying of any kind. You are also wearing leggings and running shoes and a ball cap because after a morning walk-run, you are just too lazy to change because it’s Thursday and it’s errands day and you are rocking your mom-uniform hard today! It really doesn’t matter how you look on the outside because today you are feeling a little bit empowered after that third and final Presidential Debate because, thank gawd, it was the third and final debate and because your candidate owned that meet up…like a nasty woman.

You are driving down 99 to Modesto listening to one of your favorite podcasts when suddenly YOU HEAR LIZ DROP YOUR NAME and that Facebook post of yours when you were last on Facebook being social…except for that photo album from Kathy’s retirement party a few days later because when a coworker has been a nurse for FORTY ONE YEARS, you honor that.

But I digress…

Yes, you are out and about in the 209 running errands while listening to Spawned with Kristen and Liz of Cool Mom Picks talking about the need, especially right now, for some self care because the election season rhetoric of late does make us feel like we just might blow up and you do hear them drop your name because in your little world you imagine that you are the only “Laura” they know.

You scream out loud alone in your car while driving down the freeway and then you laugh until you cry all the while nodding your head yes over and over again because they are sharing some great tips right now for a little self care…which you know all of America needs right now…along with a hug and a pat on the back because we are going to be okay…


It will be. It has to be. I mean remember the 2000 election and how your then 8 year old Zoë was so stressed and worried that America was going to end because we went weeks not really knowing for sure who won the election until the Supreme Court stepped in and Gore conceded like a gentleman and a patriot? Good times those were…not. Yes, not the usual stuff that 8 year old nightmares are made of but the eventual takeaway for her, you and most of America is that every vote does count and it is super hard to fuck up the peaceful transfer of power that has been peaceful since Washington’s term as President came to an end. As horrifying as that orange-faced man is, soon enough he shall be consigned to the septic tank of democracy.

Tell yourself this, Laura and keep on taking care of you and those you love. Tell your family and friends this too…just like you did back in 2000. Also tell all your friends that they should subscribe to Spawned because Kristen and Liz are that great!

Election Day is November 8, y’all! Only nineteen more days…

an unraveling

Midlife is not a crisis. Midlife is an unraveling.

Midlife is when the universe gently places her hands upon your shoulders, pulls you close and whispers in your ear: it’s time. All of the pretending and performing – these coping mechanisms you’ve developed to protect yourself from feeling inadequate and getting hurt – has to go. Your armor is preventing you from growing into your gifts. I understand that you needed these protections when you were small. I understand that you believed your armour could you secure all the things you needed to feel worthy and lovable, but you’re still searching and you’re more lost than ever. Time is growing short. There are unexplored adventures ahead of you. You can’t live the rest of your life worried about what other people think. The time has come to let go of who you think you’re supposed to be and embrace who you are.

~ Brene Brown

Not my words, yet these are literally thoughts that spin in my mind as I get up in the morning and try to stretch limbs that ache and protest just a little in a way that they have never before. They are words I hear within my inner dialogue as I wash my face and appraise lines that are named after years of stress, worry, smiles, laughter and so much living. This is midlife I tell myself…this is my midlife I say out loud as I see my reflection smiling back at me in the morning light.

No makeup, dirty hair, morning light filter and I am just fine. This is midlife.

inside on the outside

Regina: But you’re, like, really pretty.
Cady: Thank you.
Regina: So you agree?
Cady: What?
Regina: You think you’re really pretty?
Cady: Oh… I don’t know

~ Mean Girls

Yes, when I find myself in times of trouble sometimes the only thing that makes sense of it all is to quote Mean Girls…if quoting Lennon and McCartney doesn’t work especially in what appears to be a shitty world full of some sometimes pretty shitty people…pretty, shitty people included.

Forgive me, I might be whining a little as I see beautiful people showing the hollow, ugly core that is on the inside. The most perfectly beautiful of people can sometimes be the meanest, the cruelest, the ugliest; and thanks to their social media and their desire to remind us all just how awesome and cool and hardcore bitchy they are, we get to see the ugly on the inside.

When I was trying desperately to survive the cruel awkward that is adolescence coming to terms with the reality that I wasn’t pretty…in the eyes of equally insecure peers…I wasn’t lucky to have social media to reinforce what the adults in my life then were trying to teach me…that the prettiest of people actually were super ugly assholes. How that would have helped me then.

You’re like really pretty but thanks to what you share on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram or Snapchat, we can see what’s really inside whether your mocking, shaming or celebrating bad choices because I mean…u gotta do it sometimes. Trust me, we see it. It is forever, yes, even if it’s Snapchat. Karma will one way or another come back to you. It has to.

In the meantime, I will try be more like this beautiful person because no beauty shines brighter than that of a kind heart.

How our family got so lucky to have someone as beautiful as him, in our lives I will never know but I will give thanks for such a wonderful gift that always inspires and compells me to be better.

great America

Now don’t get mad. Some of the opinions expressed in this post are absolutely, positively not my own. Meanwhile, is it safe to come out of the bunker yet? 

A good friend posed this question today:

For those of you who believe in the message “Make America Great Again”, what year do you last believe America was Great?

Knowing him, I do believe him when he said this was a 100% serious question posed with no intent to argue or denigrate. Just him trying to wrap his mind around this thought and promise made.

You all should know that I just adore this friend of mine and the intellectual challenges he throws out there sometimes.

Meanwhile, I sat back, popped open a can of La Croix with lime and enjoyed the show.

  • 1775
  • Morally…perhaps 1972…before we made the murdering of babies legal!!! …oh dear…
  • Black babies in particular. So sad. …oh dear, oh dear…
  • the 50’s …sigh!
  • I haven’t been around that long…millennials can be so cute and cuddly sometimes!
  • When Bill Clinton was president!
  • Back when it was still under British rule. …here I am hearing Farmer Refuted because, yes, Hamilton is still my jam; and why should a tiny island across the sea regulate the price of tea?
  • I think it’s always been great.
  • Just before Nike said just do it.
  • When John Wayne saved us all. Since Will Smith took over it has seemed a little more brash and in yo face. …I thought that this is one of the reasons why people liked the Republican candidate because that will play well in the global arena fo sure.
  • America was kinda great from 1880-1940. Then really great 1941-1990 or so. Then 1990-2015 only kinda great again. Now its quickly getting less great. To me great means jobs for everyone, new infrastructure, social cohesion, a positive and upbeat and honest assessment by our leaders and the press. And yes it also includes we must keep the peace when needed overseas. Personally i would like to see the USA take over the entire planet so all humans could live in greatness. Vote Trump, Hillary for Prison. …I might need to retreat back to my bunker…
  • I’d say after 9/11 it’s been all downhill.
  • Once they outlawed incandescent light bulbs. …raise your hand if you believe in Science!
  • 1840 …because The Trail of Tears of course
  • Before the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo …eye roll
  • As I sit here watching The Outlaw Josie Wales I can’t help but think it was not during the”wild west” times. …I’m getting dizzy from the eye rolls y’all
  • As a white person it’s easy for me to “pick” a date. Honestly, this country has been wrong for so many for so long. Being married to a man of color it is becoming more apparent that huge populations of people have been unjustly treated throughout our country’s history. It makes me sad and I want my kids to be treated fairly on who they are, not because of their ethnicity and skin color. …oof!
  • Make America one again. and remember the party that supported slavery. oh dear, oh dear, oh dear, oh dear…

I’m not going to go back into my bunker again just yet even if last night’s speech literally scared the shit out of me. I believe that judging the greatness of America is subjective, kind of like profanity, R-ratings and porn – it depends on who is judging. In the world of the 24-hour news cycle, we are as great or weak as the moment. I’d like to see what the GOP/Trump thinks what is greatness – I fear it could be a time in history where segregation, lack of civil rights for minorities, women and LGBTQ was the norm, and power was based on military might. If that is the case…what makes America great is the power of old, white men – I am scared. Genuinely frightened. But I am not going to go back into my bunker again just yet. November is coming and I most definitely am not going to vote for a candidate that is fueled by fear and hate…or who affectionately pats the ass of his grown daughter...EWWW!!!

Speaking of dads…

This dad will be once again be riding his bicycle across the great state of Iowa because he can. This is his SIXTEENTH RAGBRAI that he will be riding and you know, as long as there is a RAGBRAI and awesome 77 year old fathers who ride in it, along with 8,000 plus riders riding their bikes across the great state of Iowa just because they can, I still have a little hope Because as flawed and messed up as we can be sometimes right now, America is pretty great…as long as we don’t do something as foolish as taking that left at Albuquerque or vote for a platform of hate and fear.

mourning, but with all the hope

I know that I am not the only one crying and screaming on the inside what the actual fuck right now.

Baton Rouge…Alton Sterling…”he should have just complied”…Falcon Heights…Philando Castile…”but he complied; he followed the officer’s orders”…Black Lives Matter…Dallas…Dallas PD…Ballwin…Ballwin PD…Blue Lives Matter…“All Lives Matter”…

I can’t. I just can’t.

Moments that words don’t reach; suffering too terrible to name. And in these moments this week I just want to hold the ones I love the most as tight as I can and push away the unimaginable. All of it. But I can’t. I just can’t.

I am at work and I distract myself with work. I walk into the break room and one of the news channels is on. It’s not Fox News…THANK YOU…but I just can’t. I distract myself with work, with my patients’ conditions and parents’ bedside vigils because I just can’t imagine.

Coffee is delivered by my current favorite child, and I give thanks for the happy distraction it brings.

It’s the little things. Acts of kindness. Warm hugs. Parents holding their precious new babies as close as they can taking in all the promises of future hope that they represent. Moments that words don’t reach; grace too powerful to understand. My heart hurts right now. The hearts of most everyone else I know hurt right now. Sad, mad, all the outrage, all the helplessness, all the tears and fears are happening right now and I know that I am not alone. But through the night at work last night there was for me a promise of hope that no matter how small is potentially powerful enough to rise above the unimaginable. I’m keeping that hope close to my heart and last night, all night, and today, right now I am happy for the tiny warmth it radiates deep within my broken heart.

A baby is god’s opinion that the world should go on.

Carl Sandburg