Saturday, January 12, 2008

Isn't It Ironic...

I'm sure you all know what I'm talking about when I allude to the "domestic perfection blogs" - 'cause I'm sure you've stumbled across them, too.

You know the ones that I mean - the ones where you stop, and you inwardly sigh. The blogs where the homes are so gorgeous, and the recipes and the crafts always turn out perfectly, the decorating is impeccable, and the children are darling and adorable and never burp in public*.

In case you haven't noticed this yet, *this* is not one of those blogs...

Yesterday, I wrote:
And really, when you think about it - sweet and fun (and squeaky clean)?
It's not a bad way to start off the year...

And I wrote it in all seriousness.
Because I do believe that.
It's just that the reality around here? It's a little bit different.

Let me tell you how yesterday shook out. (Please see "Editor's Note" below)
Dig if you will the picture....

I'm getting Schecky ready for school. He's fed. He's dressed. His teeth are brushed, his shoes are on. All that stands between us and the door is combing his hair.

Which I do.



Yup. The Scheckster has head lice.
(His school has had a horrific problem with them this winter, and so far, he'd dodged that bullet. Our luck, it seems, had run out. GAH!)

So I jot an email to his teacher letting her know not to expect the boy, and race out to the drugstore to buy some de-bugging stuff.

That was Thing Number One.
(Not to be confused with ThingOne)

Thing Number Two -
(Not to be confused with ThingTwo)

I return home from the drugstore, to be greeted at the door by Bubba, bearing bad news. His father had just called: Gaga, Bubba's last remaining grandparent, had just passed away.
(This was sad news, but not wholly unexpected. She was doing fine when we saw her at Christmas, but in the first week of the New Year contracted pneumonia, and deteriorated shockingly quickly.)

I come in the house, throw Schecky in the shower to get him started with the debugging process, and walk Bubba to his car.

When I notice that my car - which was FINE for the trip to the drugstore - now has a flat tire. This is my car which I just got new tires for in November. This is my car which we need for the drive up to Tennessee to be with family.

This is Thing Number Three - the thing that threatens to send me over the edge.

I indulge in a moment of self-pity: "It's hard trying to be an optimist when life keeps kicking my ass," I inwardly grouse. "It's not even Nine Freaking O'Clock!"

Then I tell myself to snap out of it.
I remind myself that none of these things are earth-shattering.
Frustrating, yes. Some of them emotional and sad, yes.
But none of them are devastating.

I remind myself of one of my favorite pictures on Flickr - and I carry on.

And I spend the rest of the day making travel plans, dealing with the tire, and de-lousing my child. (and let me just say - that's a WHOLE LOT OF LOVE right there.)

And there is a light at the end of the tunnel, you know?
Bad things really do tend to happen in threes - so there was none of that pesky "waiting for the final shoe to drop" nonsense.

And there's this:

Many of you already know about my so-called luck with fortune cookies. Those that don't, you can educate yourself here.

This was a nice one to get today.

And it's particularly apt. I'm notoriously bad at asking for help, and even worse at accepting it. So this is a good reminder for me. I might even have to frame it.

And now we're off to Tennessee.
Be back soon...

***Edited to add:***
I told myself that I wasn't going to blog about this. (Which just goes to show how much my word to myself means...) But I think I'm already in a position to laugh about this.

And so please know that this is how you should read this.

I'm not looking for sympathy, or to whinge on about how bad I've got it.
It's just a somewhat wry reflection on life here at the House That Crazy Built.
(And would you look at that? It's the bossy little voice! Now it's telling you how to read my posts. Gah! Stupid bossy little voice...)

*And yes, I know, I know - those blogs are every bit as much a fantasy as the Pottern Barn Kids catalog. It's just the face that these bloggers choose show the world. I know that. But sometimes I do buy into the fantasy that somewhere, somehow, someone has managed to achieve the wholly, truly gracious life.


Hockey Mom said...

Gah. That WAS the day from he**.

Just a gentle reminder, graciousness ain't what you surround yourself with, it's how you live. And, you're good baby!

Gotta Knit! said...

Thank you for gently knocking some sense into me. There is one blog I follow that even is having a book coming out this year. Her home, kids, food and even chickens are perfect looking somewhere in England or another country like that. Nothing against her since I do like her blog a lot but had wondered if she did not work outside her home and never sleep. I just couldn't figure out how my life was so out of kilter.

Oh, you have my sympathy about the lice. That is quite an ordeal to clean the kid and then the whole de-licing the house. A friend of mine had to do it twice with her daughter. Her ex found them and cleaned the child but didn't know to clean everything the child had been in contact with.

So sorry about Bubba's grandmother.

Autum said...

Now I feel bad for thinking I was having a bad day. I'm going to go now and be thankful that I didn't have to de-louse anyone today. Have a safe trip to Tennessee.

shizzknits said...

Sorry to hear about the loss in your family. Even what's unexpected, it's still hard. ((hugs))

I know what you mean about the perfect blogs. Me? I'm too lazy to be perfect...I would rather take a nap in the afternoon than clean house. LOL

Sarah and Jack said...

GAH! I would have been throwing in the towel. LOL

Hopefully that will be the end of the craziness for awhile sweetie.

3 to get ready said...

Geeminy Christmas. That was QUITE the day. Good luck with your delousing efforts and have a safe trip to TN. And I'm so sorry about Bubba's grandmother. How nice that you were able to see her so recently.

And thank you for linking to the "Keep Calm" poster. Those are some serious words to live by. Stiff upper lip and all that -- whot, whot! I'm going to remember that the next time I'm having a moment like the one in Ya-Ya Sisterhood when she goes crazy.

Wendy said...

When lice hit our family, all six of us got it before we noticed. Jeff shaved his head (I thought about it) and we sat for 4 hours combing out my stepdaughters' incredibly thick hair. Looking back on it, it was a bonding moment for the family, if a miserable one.

Thanks for sharing your not so perfect life with us. We all appreciate the honesty. (And pass on my condolences to Bubba. It is never easy, no matter how how expected it is.)

Misty said...

bless your heart!!! Can I help you in any way ? :)

Thimbleanna said...

I think maybe you've burst my bubble. Are you sure the Pottery Barn Kids catalog is a fantasy? I was sure that's how all of you with younger children live these days ;-)! Sorry you've had a bad morning -- I hope it gets better. I know it will -- you've got a good fortune there to prove it. Drive safely.

Christy said...


Wishing you safe travels.

Jodi said...

I work with kids and have had near-misses with lice. One of my co-workers thought she'd picked them up and this company called "Lousy Nitpickers" came to her home. It thought that was funny.

I get annoyed by the perfection blogs too. And like you said, it's what those folks choose to show the world.

Take good care.

editrix said...

Hang in there, sweetie. Things have to get better soon, right?

And I'm very sorry for your family's loss.

normanack said...

You rock so hard! I love your attitude!

Melissa Huskey said...

I was helping at the school last month and one of the moms says, "Oh, here comes the class with lice." I turn around and all the ids are heading for me. Now, my dtr's teacher had sent home NO notes warning of this! I was so pissed! So far we have been VERY lucky (I better find some wood to knock on as I am starting to scratch!)

So sorry about Grandma. The trip up here should be ok and nice weather is expected until Thursday (chance of snow) Be careful.

laeroport said...

Hugs, my friend. Wishing you a safe, family-filled, fully-inflated, lice-free trip.

And I quit reading those blogs a long time ago. I just couldn't take the fiction posing as fact.

African Kelli said...

I'd love to tell you I don't know that pain, but welcome to my sophomore year of COLLEGE. Lice. In a dorm. Of girls. = hell on earth.
I am so sorry.
And seriously, those blogs you describe? They are the Easter Bunny. Don't believe it. Easter's about Jesus. And blogging is about reality. No one has perfection. Even Martha went to jail!

beki said...

Okay, I'm a dope for just now reading this post - I wondered what was up this weekend. I hope you have a safe drive home. I'm thinking about you.

Big Pissy said...

ACK! Lice! I went through that years ago with each of my girls...what a nightmare! :(

Safe travels. :)

rohanknitter said...

I"m a little late here, but just wanted to say sorry about your husband's grandmother. And it does sound like one heck of a day. I know in the grand scheme of things, lice are more petty annoyance than grand tragedy, but ewww! (Plus it sounds like a major pain in the arse. )

Lil D said...

So sorry to hear about grandmother passing.

So glad to read a real blog, too. My husband doesn't even read blogs, but he's under the illusion that those perfect ones are how life should be. I get to disappoint him.

Rebecca said...

on no! i'm sorry to hear about all THREE Of those things. and your blog is so much more interesting than all those what i think are wholly manufactured bliss blogs.