Saturday, February 05, 2011

Mourning the Loss of the Never-Was

Today I am in mourning, yet I'm not completely sure what I am mourning for. Loss, certainly. But a loss that is hard to define.

Most of you know that my Mom, Stacie, is not my biological mother. Stacie is the mother of my heart and soul, but another woman gave birth to me. And for the first years of my life, that woman, Judi, was my mother. When I was a child, she left me in the care of my father and my Mom and except for a few and far between appearances, she pretty much abandoned me.

Today as I was Googling around, I stumbled upon an obituary for the woman who bore me. And it has left me dazed and bewildered at the circumstances that brought me to the point where I would only learn of her death months after the fact, and in such a harsh, untempered way.

Now many of you are thinking that I still have my mother, the woman who raised me, who made my homecoming dress, the woman I would sacrifice most anything for, and you would be right. I am fortunate to have her, and our relationship is so wonderful that we formalized it less than ten years ago with a legal adoption. But unlike many adoptees, I not only knew my biological mother, but spent the early 'formative' years of my life with her. Judi was the one in those first years of life who diapered me, fed me, rocked me to sleep, took me to school, taught me to walk, etc. So her loss hits me on more than just the level of unknown egg donor.

Part of this grief I feel is at all the unresolved questions I had for her. Why did she leave me? What did that little girl do to make her care so little for her only daughter, for her first born child? Why? Why? WHY?

That question "Why?" echoes in my head so loudly that I can hardly hear any other thought. Did she ever care about me? Did she ever regret it? Did she ever wonder about what kind of woman I had become? On my birthday every year, did she ever think about me? (Her birthday, September 21st, was just one day before mine, so I thought of her on mine.)

There are a million other questions I have too, but they will also be unanswered. I would like to find her husband and ask him how she died, so that I might at least know if there are health concerns I need to be aware of. She was only 65 when she passed away, which seems too young. And now I am orphaned of biological parents. Yet I am so grateful that I am not alone.

So I mourn for the woman I knew so briefly. But I also mourn for that little girl, who's mother would rock her and sing to her "You are My Sunshine", then left her and the little girl never knew why. And now she never will.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Things I Have Been Thinking About Today

How 'artisanal' can the new ravioli at Olive Garden really be? It's a chain restaurant. I bet the ravioli isn't even handmade.

I really hope the murder-suicide of the Mesquite councilwoman and her husband wasn't really over a false $96.40 travel expense. I hope that people remember the couple for all the good they did instead of the tragic end.

Chipotle Bacon Brittle sounded like a science experiment gone wrong but it is, in reality, very good. So good that people are willing to pay sixteen bucks a pound for it. Which proves that bacon really does make anything better.

After watching the "State of the State" address on Monday and the "State of the Union" address on Tuesday, the "State of Shae" is depressed.

I bet the clerks at the grocery store worry about me. This week I bought eight pounds of bacon. And that's still better than the time I bought nothing but adult diapers and generic vodka. Now I know there is a reasonable explanation for these purchases. But I bet they just think I'm some incontinent alcoholic with a bacon fetish.

I think someone should sue Glen Lerner for the new commercials with former judge Tony Abbotangelo. "When you don't want to do the time, call Glen Lerner"...seriously? The commercials imply that they can get you out of criminal charges. I think that strongly borders on false advertising. Plus, Glen seems like a douche.

I wasn't nominated for an Oscar again this year. And I thought this might have been my best chance ever, since I was actually IN a film this year. On the good side, I don't have to find a dress.

I actually contacted my legislators to propose new legislation. I haven't heard back. How long should I wait to contact them again so that I don't cross the line from 'concerned citizen' to 'crazy lady'?

I wonder how much more productive I would be if I didn't possess so many ways to waste time? That said, someone would have to kill me to take my iPhone away. Or my DVR. Or my iPod. Or my computer. Or my cable TV.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Paging Dr. www

My mom is a doctor, did you know that? No, she never spent a day in medical school, but apparently through the power of Google she has the ability to diagnose and treat disease.

Now we all know that moms have to play doctor occasionally. They are the ones to Bactine and Band-Aid our skinned knees, they are the ones to rub Vick's on our chests and dose us with terrible tasting cough syrup when we had colds and they are the ones who know that three corn dogs and a ride on the Tilt-a-Whirl will result in projectile vomiting so they sagely advise against it. So sure, we rely on them for some basic medical advice when we are kids. (Although we did have to consult a more experienced medical authority, namely my grandmother, on occasion.) What Mom could handle medically was limited to minor first aid, comfort and care.

But with the power of the Internet, my mom can now look up whatever symptom or problem that is bothering her and diagnose her illness or injury and prescribe a course of treatment. The problem is that my mother has no medical training, no access to things like say, antibiotics, and oh, yeah, she is frequently incorrect. Let's just all give thanks that she doesn't have access to leeches.

I will admit that I have used the Internet to look up things. Who hasn't thought, "hmm, what is THAT? "and gone to see if they can find it. Some sites like Web MD and the like can actually be quite useful. I frequently check out the side effects of any prescribed medication on the web, because after watching all the TV I know that sometimes the side effects of a medication can be worse than the problem they are trying to fix. (Like the psoriasis medication that has a small risk of "fatal brain disease". Um, no thanks, I'll keep the itchy skin.) But the web doesn't know my temperature, hasn't taken my pulse, read my EKG, seen my family history, nor can even SEE the weird spot on my little toe. So it's a whole lot of poking and hoping for nothing. That pesky headache could be a need for new glasses or a brain tumor, it's kind of hard to know which without say, testing your eyes or having a CT scan.

Most of the problems my mom is 'diagnosing' are little things, like a small wart on her cheek that she would like to have removed but in their infinite wisdom her HMO requires to first be pre-authorized for removal so while she was waiting for the pre-auth to show up she decided to treat at home. Some of the web's suggestions? Treating with tea tree oil or salicylic acid (aspirin) or banana peel, all applied topically. Yes, the web suggested sticking a piece of banana peel to her face. She did not walk around with garbage stuck to her face (thank goodness) but she did try the other suggested treatments. They did shrink the wart but after working initially, the wart has decided to fight back. The problem is that while the pre-authorization came through, she waited so long that she now has to get it authorized all over again.

Now, she did see a doctor originally to make sure it really was a wart and not something more serious (as a cancer survivor, she does pay attention to that sort of thing). And she will see a doctor again, eventually, to have the thing removed. But now she has a little rash. And last night she went on the Internet.....

Saturday, January 01, 2011

It's a New Dawn, It's a New Day, It's a New Life, and I'm Feeling Good

Happy New Year Everyone!

It's kind of funny, isn't it, how January first brings with it the promise of better things, better times, a new broom sweeping clean, etc, etc? That's a lot of pressure for one day, especially one that was proceeded by a night of heavy drinking. But I'll go with that flow because it seems appropriate that we should have a 'fresh start' day and why not 1/1/11?

For those of you just joining the Amused and Abused blogosphere, I will recap why we are here and what is going on. Feel free to peruse previous posts, some are actually quite entertaining (while others are merely folderol.) I began blogging earnestly in 2008 when I quit my 'day job' to pursue a more creative life. You can see from the amount of posts in 2008 and 2009 that I was posting nearly every other day on average. Then in 2010, it averaged more like monthly (with the reality being that I haven't posted since August). Augh, what a horrible thing for a "writer"!

My dream when I quit my job was that I would write hundreds, neigh, thousands of scripts, novels, sketches, poems, essays, etc. It is truly amazing how quickly one can get writer's block when one is confronted with the task of actually writing down the thousands of ideas running through her head. Gulp. Oh sure, I wrote a few things, but nothing like the quantity I wanted to write. I have a million excuses, er, reasons, why it didn't happen and sure, there were some legitimate interruptions (most noteably, the Graminator - my then 87 year old Grandmother who I help take care of - fell and broke her pelvis, meaning need for hospitalization and a major increase in care on my part.) But I still feel a bit of shame at that waste of precious time.

2009 came so quickly and brought some new challenges. I helped plan my brother's wedding and as part, baked a few things for the shower and wedding. This led to the 'a ha' moment where my mother said, "You could sell this stuff" and Glitter City Sweets was born. I found a commercial kitchen, baked up samples, set up a website and figured I would wait and see if it caught on. Boy, did it, and in directions I never anticipated. I soon was sending handmade marshmallows, yes marshmallows, and cookies and candies around the country. It was obviously meant to be. Oh, and I also spent my summer working on a fabulously funny film called "You People". It was my first feature film acting role, and it was a blast. I got to be with great people having a wonderful time and we ended up with an awesome film.

2010 came even more quickly it seems and the first half of the year whizzed by in a flurry of promoting GCS, marketing, networking, developing new recipes, etc. Then mid year, the wheels came off the track a little bit. I lost my dog of 15 years, which to a non-dog person may not seem like a great tragedy but affected me deeply. Then the Graminator, who is 89 at this point, suffered a cerebral hematoma. While the hospital stay was mercifully brief, the lasting repercussions were not. Due to her advancing Alzheimer's and weakening physical state, she was placed on home hospice. This means that she has 6-12 months to live. Because her conditions are not of the nature that anyone can predict an exact date, we get to live with the grim reaper constantly reminding us that we will lose her, probably sooner than later. More and more of my time is spent caring for her physical needs. Watching her slowly slipping away is exhausting and saddening. I already begin to miss her. But she still smiles at me and laughs at me and tells me she loves me, so the pain I feel is bittersweetly mixed with joy and admiration for a wonderful woman who has lived an amazing life. But life must still go on, and after a bit of a slow summer GCS took off for a record fall and holiday season. Blessed be the powers that brought this on, because quite frankly I needed the money to keep living this creative life. And amidst all of this, the family picked up a new hobby, handcrafting. (I use this generic term because we dabble in jewelry design, fiber arts, upcycling, etc.) This "hobby" led to the creation of a second small business, Glitzy Kitsch. It's still in it's infancy but one thing leads to another and it has germinated the seed of yet a third business in my mother's mind and I will move Heaven and Earth to help make her dreams come true. Oh, and that little movie I did? It has won handfuls of awards, played at film festivals big and small, and is now available for purchase on DVD and will soon be available on Amazon Video on Demand. It's a great film and now you will have no excuse for not checking it out.

So here we are in 2011, which is not only when we reflect on the past but look forward to the future. So what are my plans? Well, first up is the Graminator's 90th birthday this month. We are going to celebrate this milestone because of the achievement and because we know it may be her last. Secondly, I will write more. My writing life has taken a back seat to the other, more 'tangible' activities going on. But that's my fault and it is time to correct it. The world will never get to bask in the brilliance that is my writing if I don't get it out of my head, onto paper and out into the world. This includes blogging, so look for my posts, I am aiming for bi-weekly. I will post more to social media, since that seems to be the way of the future, the way to connect with other humans without having any actual human contact. I am working on building GCS up more, with a couple of irons in the fire that could take us to another level. The Glitzy Kitschers are crafting away and working towards their dreams and goals. And hopefully a little more filmmaking fun. Sounds like a lot, right? Well there are 365 new days to fill this year, so why not make them work for me?

Oh yeah, add the typical blah, blah, exercise more, eat right, yadda yadda. Most of that stuff flies out the window by January 11th anyway. So what are your REAL goals this year? What have you been waiting to do and what are you waiting for? Sure, 2011 is brand new, but it can take whatever you want to dish out. So what's it going to be Loyal Readers? Are you going to make this a fresh start? Is it a new dawn, a new day, a new life? Are you feeling good?

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Glitzy Kitsch is now open!

Okay, the Glitzy Kitsch store is now open. But consider it a "soft" opening because not everything is on there yet. For two reasons really. One, it takes a long time to list each item, at least for me. I'm still learning what works and how to do it, etc. The other reason is that there are two schools of Etsy, and that is either re-listing frequently or adding new items frequently. I have decided to add new items daily, since it is cheaper and seems more logical. But again, I am still learning so that may change.

As you can see if you check the store out, we have a pretty eclectic mix of items. Some vintage things (which are coming to the site) some jewelry, some clothes, some housewares. I like it because I don't have to do only one thing, I can do lots of different things. MY mom likes it because she can play too. In all, we're having a blast just making this stuff.

My mom is more, well let's say refined, than I am. Her stuff is time consuming, meticulous and elegant. Mine is quicker, funkier and more folk art that fine art. Val has been taking beading classes with us to and her stuff is like my mom's, intricate and elegant. But it has brought us closer together. THis week we are all taking a metal working class together. I think I'm the one most interested but they are so good at exploring with me.

Okay, off to list more items on Etsy. Take a look at the store and let me know what you think. And thanks for joining me on this little side trip on my journey of life. I'm never sure where I'm going but I sure have fun getting there!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...