Thursday, April 30, 2009

Life's irritating mysteries.....cont'd

I hate stoplights with timers! Who thought that up anyway? Probably the idiot who came up with the "adult swim" concept. Why do we need to be told to stop what we are doing all the time? What's wrong with free will?

Springtime in Colorado. It is giant confusion between summer and winter in a bi-polar, irritating fashion.

Unisex restrooms-public restrooms. It's bad enough my home has to have both sexes using the same restrooms-but in public, I should be spared. Men's rooms are like smoking sections. If there is a smoking section-the whole place is a smoking section-there is no such thing as non-smoking. I feel this way about both sex restrooms. They all become men's rooms. Much like my household-where I am, of course, the only female. I should have my own restroom really-and my own shower, closet, and room too. I digress....

Has anyone ever noticed the Yellow truck sign is orange? I suppose it's genious marketing-but it's also quite stupid.

What is the deal with Pirates? I thought they were fictional characters?

The English language. I did not realize just how absurd our language was until I had a first grader. As he learns to read and write (and I along with him), I am getting more and more annoyed with this language. We really don't need 26 letters-what is the point of x and q? Couldn't x be replaced with z or ks? And q- kw? C sometimes sounds like S, and sometimes like K-identity crisis. This to me means, it could just go away. And what about silent letters? WHY? Get rid of them! That is the stupidest thing I have ever seen. Why don't we just call them invisible letters and not put them there? Don't even get me started on the i before e thing! I could go on and on. It's as if someone took a perfectly good language and just totally screwed it. Senseless-truly! It makes me crazy. I could do a blog on this alone but I will spare you.

My DVR player only works with a remote control. There are no buttons on it to manually operate it. What has the world come to? Between my two boys, finding that remote is no small task. Remote controls, like many many technological advances, are the best and the worst things that have ever happened. That is another blog unto itself!

There are people who are not very bright , but have great people skills-they are so nice and likable, you can forgive the fact that they are dumber than sticks. Then there are those who are sharp but not so congenial. These are people you can co-exist with-and just accept the functionality of it-you just get what you need to get done, and keep the rest to a minimum. Either of these combinations are okay with me. But then there are those whom are both unintelligent AND unfriendly-and there are lots of words to describe this unfortunate combination-then it is one of the most irritating things I can think of. Obviously, I avoid these people like the swine flu-but when I have to work with someone who fits this description-it makes me want to pull out my hair!

If I could.....

If I could be there today, I would:

Make you a big old waffle-and imagine we were sitting at Malibu Inn together having some all important conversation about our weekend plans and which boys are cute.

Then, we would pack it up and head to a pool somewhere to catch some rays on a perfect cloudless day. We could ride in a convertable with warm sunshine beating down on us. I would play great music on my Ipod that would bring us back to our barely-past-childhood days when we first met.

I would also enjoy a nice deep friend Zenover-a couple of beers, then off to the Blind Lemon.

And no trip is complete without catching a game at Riverfront-a bunch of Skyline chili dogs and a few cocktails at Barleycorns.

I have so many great memories of good times with you my dear friend-and as far away as they seem at times, they are never far from my heart. Speaking of my heart-I am sending you mine today; I know yours is broken-just use mine!

Sad days

Sometimes when you have a sad day-you just want to be sad. I know there is value in being cheered up. And I usually pull the, "I could have it worse" card which generally helps snap me out of my feel-sorry-for-myself funk. There is always someone who has it worse-and as bad as things can seem, they could probably get worse.

But sometimes, you just need to have a pity party. And when friends of mine call me and tell me that something has them down (like this morning-one of my best friends in the world is having a very tough time); as much as I want to turn on the charm and use my sense of humor to make her feel better, I also feel like just saying-"Well, that SUCKS. And you should be down, and I would be too." Is that really so bad? Honestly, that may well be the best thing I can think of to say. So, for all of you having days like that-maybe you should just say that once in a while. It's okay to just be down.

Now, I am not saying it should go on and on. Eventually, these days come to an end (thankfully); and then we have to live our lives-even through the disappointments and imperfections. Most of us do. In fact, that is probably what separate winners and losers. It is not about the bad things that happen to us-it is all about how we deal with them and get on with it. Still, we reserve the right to let those things bother us. I am just saying there is no shame in admitting that when something bad happens-it makes you want to curl up in a ball and not even face the world. Sometimes the world wins-and I am okay with a white flag day once in a while. We should all grant ourselves that. And then, the next day (or so)-get up and take aim again.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Tune talk

Hold on to 16 as long as you can
Changes come around real soon
Make us women and men

This is a line in a song that I find rather moving. The song is Jack and Diane, by John Cougar Mellancamp. I often think of it when something rather unsettling happens in life. I sent it to my good friend, Denice, last year when she sent out a note saying she was officially divorced. It was a difficult divorce-one where he wanted it and she did not. I am not going into the sordid details, but she did meet him as a teenager, and they were married for 15 years before he decided he just didn't love her anymore. Ironic how these lyrics ring true. Adulthood can be so cruel.

I didn't think life was bliss as a teenager, and I am not suggesting that this lyric does either. But it does make me think about how being a grown-up can sometimes just suck. How I miss the land of very little responsibility. I miss when the stakes weren't so high, I miss eating whatever I wanted and never worrying about gaining weight, I miss not knowing what tax deductible meant, or what concealer was for, and I really miss just living in the moment.

There's no time to lose, I heard her say
Catch your dreams before they slip away
Dying all the time
Lose your dreams
And you will lose your mind.
Ain't life unkind?

Okay, this one is a bit more somber isn't it? This is Ruby Tuesday by the Rolling Stones. There is an endless list of songs that talk about dreams. This one tells me it's okay if all my dreams don't come true-it's just not okay to lose them. It's easy to do that-forget your dreams. Not many people are living their dreams, but you can sure tell people who no longer have any. It's like being a corpse, and I never want to be there. It's like a song with no melody. Dreams just represent hope. I never want to lose hope.

And, on a much lighter note-

Oh, yesterdays over my shoulder
So I cant look back for too long
Theres just too much to see waiting in front of me
And I know that I just cant go wrong

This is by the ever so fun, Jimmy Buffett-I tell you, it always puts a smile on my face. I have a tendency to look in the past too much. It's not a good habit, and I don't want to do it anymore. I have to believe the best is yet to come.

Monday, April 13, 2009

He got it right...

About a month ago, I wrote about how I tried to do this nice night out for my hubby and me for his birthday ( and I totally screwed it up. This past weekend, my husband planned a very nice outing-which we referred to as a sleepover to our kids-for my birthday. And it was perfect. I know it isn't a competition, but I must concede. He really nailed it.

First, I had a full day of spa treatments -what a slice of HEAVEN! Message, manicure, pedicure, steam room, on and on. It was wonderful. Then, I get to my beautiful room in the gorgeous, historic Oxford hotel to find my handsome husband waiting for me with a martini. Then he whisked us both off to dinner at Morton's, where we had an excellent dinner. Afterward, we headed to the Cruise room, which is a hip little bar just inside the Oxford hotel. It was the first bar to open in Denver after prohibition. The bartender even shared some ghost stories with us-which I just LOVED! Then we just hit the elevator button to our room-which was oh so nice. We got to sleep in! The next morning, we enjoyed a delicious brunch-and then headed home to celebrate Easter with our family.

What a great night!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Parent-teacher conferences

I am lucky when it comes to parent-teacher conferences. We hardly ever have anything to discuss. My kids have been doing quite well in school. Of course, my oldest is in first grade and my youngest is in preschool. So, my guess is, no one really has tough parent teacher conferences at these ages. And yet, I still come away worrying about things. My oldest struggles with his handwriting, verbal instruction, and math has even been a bit challenging for him lately (he usually does very well). It is completely insane to think there will be zero that challenges my son, but I still find myself thinking that should be the case. I get these unrealistic visions of me tutoring him all summer so his 2nd grade reports should not even have a slightly below perfect tone. And then I realize I am just being ridiculous.

As for my pre-schooler, how in the world can we already be worrying? And yet, I am! His teacher (whom was also my first Born's teacher) told us we may very well have an introvert on our hands. WHAT? My offspring an introvert? I could almost hear my mother in law laughing. I find introverts to be among the most challenging personalities as a giant extrovert myself. I mean, should I just shut up? Should I engage them and try and make them feel more comfortable by talking more? Seriously, it just baffles me. And my little boy just got his first-of what promises to be many-labels as an introvert. The world is just full of labels isn't it?

Once again, I have this rainbows and sunshine belief that I should personally be able to fix the world for my children. It should be absolutely perfect for them. And I know that is just stupid, but I still agonize over it.

This brings me back to teacher-parent conferences. I know they are useful, but really, they just seem like a giant exercise in a parent's insecurity. But maybe it's just me.


I am not sure I like this aging thing. My 39th birthday is very soon. And I am not all that excited about it. Why? It's like I can hear the final jeopardy music ticking for the countdown to 40 (complete with a smug, "I know the answer" Alex Tribec face). I know it should not really bother me-aging is only natural, but it does. It's different for women too. As men age, they actually improve. As most men are just giant children anyway, the aging process is a welcome one. The difference between a boy and a man is quite appealing to me -however long it may take.

For women, on the other hand, it seems we start losing ground. Things that used to come easy for me are so much harder as I get older. It's no longer about losing weight-it's more about not gaining it. I now see a much bigger difference when I wear make up and when I don't. Gray hair seems to be winning the war. But these are just physical battles.

Beneath the surface, I fight the urge to ponder where I am in life and whether it is where I thought I would be or should be or want to be. Decades tend to make me reflect on such things. I do dislike the hottness factor disspating-but not nearly as much as the self doubt that accompanies looking behind me to see what I have been doing for all these years. Would I do it different? Should I make some big change now?

I am sure we could all look back at defining moments and wish we had done it differently. Basically, who doesn't have a few regrets? Life is full of decisions-and most of the time, we know without a doubt when we make the right one. We know right from wrong. We know when we are doing things that are impulsive. We know when we are making a sacrifice. Years later, those things become even more clear.

I wish I had worked harder in college. I was blessed with the ability to get good enough grades without killing myself which is exactly what I did. It makes me wonder how well I would have done if I had tried harder. I also wish I had gone to law school. I think I would have made a good lawyer.

I wish I had kept up with speaking Farsi. I had good reasons for burying that side of my identity at the time, but I reget it anyway. I long to speak to my dad and my Iranian side of the family in Farsi.

I wish I had kept up with teaching aerobics. That one may be fixable as I recently signed up to get certified again. That is definately something I should keep up on. It is very liberating to me to work out-and ultimately, I want to pick the music.

I wish I would have nursed Tyler for longer. I don't know why, but I always feel like he got ripped off a little.

I wish I had been a better wife when I was trying to figure out how to be a good mommy. I believe I have paid the price for that though, so I will just leave it at that.

I should have gone to Nanny's funeral. I hate that I didn't get to say goodbye.

I wish I hadn't screwed things up so badly at my favorite job I ever had. My career has never really been the same. Again, I look back at my reasons, and I had the very best of intentions. But, I should have gone about it differently. I will probably always regret that decision.

My life has had some significant turning points. And I have lived long enough now to understand that those things shape and mold the person I am. And as I face yet another year on the calendar, I just try and make sense of it.

Friday, April 3, 2009

April 3

Today is my oldest son's 7th birthday. Seven years seems like a long time to me. I feel like I have known this little person forever. But then again, seven years have gone by in a flash. How can he be reading and writing and operating electronic devices and playing sports already?

Seven years ago, I was a very different person. I am not going to say I was naive but I think I was naive. I remember when I was pregnant, people saying how my life was going to change so much-and I just rolled my eyes thinking, "Whatever, I like my life. Why should it change?" I remember thinking maternity leave would be so great, I was going to get all this stuff done. I thought I would get the hang of this mommy thing pretty quickly. After all, most of my life, I have been successful at my endeavors. I also assumed my house would stay orderly, I would still be accomplished at my career, and be able to keep up with social engagements. I figured my husband and I would be closer than ever.

Today, I realize that the 32 year old version of me had a lot to learn. I am not saying I regret anything, but I do reflect on that person I used to be and wonder if there was any easier way of preparing for what lie ahead. I doubt it. I am one of those people that just learns things the hard way. I rarely take any one's word for anything.

As for my seven year old, poor thing. I have been a deer in headlights most of his little life. Every new thing for him is a new thing for me. This year it was losing teeth, sleepovers, full time school-packing and forgetting to pack lunches, figuring out ordering hot lunch. Some of these things seem so simple, yet I have managed to completely screw them up. I have sent him to school with the flu-he went undiagnosed with Asthma for who knows how long, I have botched up dress code for him countless times, and I get anxiety when he has to decorate anything for display at school (valentines boxes, King's Kid poster). Who knows how much the inexperienced mom in me has surfaced in his seven years.

And yet, he never complains. He was going to bed last night-sneezing and wheezing from allergies as usual. And he was still in the best spirits. Somehow, he thinks I am the greatest mommy ever. He loves when I come to his classroom. There is just a light in his eyes. He has this smile that is unmistakable when he sees me-it speaks volumes always makes me feel better. It has a way of glossing over all those silly mommy moves I make. It has a way of making this journey worth every bit of work and heart ache it can be sometimes. I suppose most of this post is just details-there is really only one worth son knows how much I love him.