A Side of Rice

Hopefully Humorous (and sometimes R-rated) Musings About Life


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My Husband Has Some Set of Stones

 

On the way home from a week-long vacation in Myrtle Beach, SC, we stopped about 2 hours from home to grab dinner and get gas for the final leg of the trip. My husband ran into the bathroom and told us to order something, that he wasn’t hungry.

We ordered, ate and as we were clearing our trays he dashed out of the bathroom, through the side door and out to the car. I didn’t want to guess about why he felt so guilty scurrying out of the public restroom, so we headed to the car.

My husband was in the passenger seat when we got to the car and said “I’m not feeling so good. You’re going to have to drive.”

We had just gotten back on the interstate when he started moaning and groaning about his stomach and told me to get off again at the next exit. We spent another 20 minutes in the car, waiting for him to come out of the fast food restaurant we had stopped at.

When he finally emerged and got back into the car, he said to the kids “one of you dig around for a beach towel in the back and pass it up here. Fast!”

I’m pretty sure my face did this:

Sneer

…because — frankly — I had no idea which end of him he needed it for.

He started retching into the towel. I asked him if he wanted me to find the closest emergency room and wincing, he coughed out “no, just get me home.”

And so we drove the remaining hour and a half home, with him periodically coughing/spitting into the towel that I would be burning once we got home. The moaning and groaning continued at a pretty consistent pace.

When we arrived home, he jumped out of the car and ran to unlock the door. He headed upstairs to the bathroom. The boys and I unloaded the bikes, as well as all the suitcases and gear we had packed into the car for the trek home.

We had finished bringing everything in and my ass had literally just hit the cushion of the chair after a nearly 10 hour drive home, when my husband called downstairs, “Becky, you’re going to need to take me to the ER.”

So, on a Saturday night at 10:00pm I drove my husband to the ER. I dropped him off at the front door, found a parking spot, and rushed in. Though, just 8 weeks post-surgery to rebuild my Achilles, my rush was more like an interesting Frankenstein-ish fast hop-walk.

When I got into the ER, they were already checking him in. We headed back to the triage area and our own bay. The basic testing began with the collection of blood and urine.

I found the atmosphere quite interesting on a Saturday night:

  • There was the guy in a bay around the corner arguing loudly with the nurses, security officers, custodian — anyone who happened by his bay, really — about what a “crock of shit you fuckers are for not giving me some meds.” He added as many cuss words to every sentence as he possibly could and elevated his voice to levels any Real Housewife would be proud of. And he also repeatedly demanded the badge number of the security officers and told the nurse he was “the kind of man to make her dreams come true.” Which made my face do this:NeeNeeGif
  • There was the couple in the bay next to us who were arguing over who would get the next body piercing when the insurance check from the settlement came in. And my face responded appropriately:JJudy

And then there was my husband. He couldn’t sit still. He couldn’t stand up. He couldn’t lay down. Nothing was comfortable. He blurted out “don’t they know I could possibly be dying here?!”  Which made me want to do this:

Longroll

But instead, I said “honey, they have your test results and if there was any indication in your initial blood work of a need to be admitted to the hospital, I’m sure they’d be on it. It’s Saturday night and there are many sick people here.”

The pain continued, bad enough at two separate points that two different nurses poked their heads in and asked if everything was ok. The second time, my husband snapped “no, or I wouldn’t be complaining.” Which I’m sure made the nurse feel like:

House

and me feel like:

oops.gif

The nurse said to him “You know, any time I’ve seen a man in the ER in this kind of pain and with these symptoms, it turns out to be kidney stones.” She then turned to me and said “which people say is very similar to the labor pains a woman experiences during delivery.”

And I’m not sure if it was the delirium of being in so much pain or just stupidity, but my husband blurted out “well she had two c-sections, so it’s not the same.”

And then my face did a whole bunch of this:

Couple

I couldn’t believe the set of stones on nerve of this dude. So I quickly blurted out “Oh, you’re right honey. Slicing directly into my abdomen, shoving internal organs aside, jerking/yanking out a baby, and sewing me back up — twice — is not the same at all.” I couldn’t help but add “and let’s not forget that in December, I drove myself to the ER at 1am with a bulging disc, severe sciatica and numbness in half of my foot.”

I then turned to the nurse and said “maybe some pain meds will help ease his discomfort and keep his yap shut. Can ya hook him up?”

A nurse administered a quick shot of morphine, but it didn’t do much. Finally, his attending nurse came in to administer a pain killer through an IV, which did three things:

  1. relieved his pain
  2. made him sleepy
  3. shut him the hell up

He was wheeled to radiology for a sonogram of his mid-section which gave us confirmation of the initial diagnosis from labs and presenting symptoms. And the nurse had been correct, my husband was the only person ever to have pain and need relief had a kidney stone.

We were sent home with a prescription for Percocet, an antibiotic, FLOWMAX and instructions to drink lots of water.

Within 48 hours he passed the two stones. Without pain. Without moaning/groaning.

And without too much empathy from me. Because — both literally and metaphorically — that set of stones on my husband is not something I ever want to deal with again.

 

 

 

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Our Last Supper

I’ve been hobbling around on my foot for a year and a half, which I thought was just a twisted ankle taking too long to heal. PSYCH! It was really a partial rupture to my Achilles that after every conservative therapy possible, required surgery on May 31 to repair/rebuild. And removal of the bone spur jutting out of my heel. Go big or go home, right, bitches?

I learned a number of things during my post-surgical recovery:

  • the anesthesia you can get will be so good, you’ll have no idea who dressed you after surgery, how you got into the car after surgery, and whether or not you were wearing a bra the first few days after surgery
  • when entering your house after surgery via the practical (for the temporarily one-legged) but not very graceful method of butt scooting, refrain from placing your hands on the metal door frame on a hot, Summer day
  • if you must enter your house butt-scooting and placing your hands on the metal door frame plate on a hot, Summer day, be sure to do it when there is plenty of anesthesia still coursing through your body so that you barely feel the burn
  • Christian Louboutin is missing out on huge bank by not catering to the post-surgical marketJokes2
  • just because you’ve had surgery, doesn’t mean you can’t play “who wore it better?”

Jokes1

  • dogs make the best nursing assistants
  • never start taking pain killers if you don’t also take stool softener
  • the maximum number of days one can go without a shower before smelling oneself is no longer than 3 days — tops!
  • there will always be some entrepreneur that will make you feel guilty about recovery, and shame your (literally) lame ass to get off of itiwalk05
  • your knee scooter makes an excellent margarita caddy, after a long day of sitting around a baseball field watching your kid playIMG_0442
  • when your friends extend kindness – accept it

Because I was going to be fairly immobile — and not able to use my left foot at all — for 6 weeks, my friend Rebecca set up a Meal Train for me. She invited friends from many of the sports families in our community to participate. I protested this and Rebecca replied with “just shut it and let people do something nice for you for a change.”

So I shut it. The kindness started the evening of my surgery, with a delivery of fried chicken, mac ‘n cheese, and probably some other yummy stuff that I can’t remember now. I barely recall my friend Michelle bringing it by, but I’m pretty sure I gave her a hug from my horizontal location on the couch. Sorry, Michelle, if I was braless…I can’t seem to remember if I was wearing one after surgery.

There were kind gestures and messages…

General June 4General June 16General June 20General June 21General June 22General June 22_2General June 24General June 24_2June 30

There were also special deliveries…

General June 3

General June 8

We were well fed 31 days – everything from full meals to gift cards for local restaurants:

June 1June 2June 3June 4June 5June 6June 7June 8June 9June 10June 11June 12June 14June 15June 17June 17_2June 19June 21June 22June 22_2June 23June 26June 28June 29July 1July 2July 3

On July 3, the final delivery from the Meal Train arrived.  One of my friends replied to a post with this:

Tami

What a fabulous reminder of the kindness, compassion and community outreach that was exemplified by our last supper. All our suppers, really.

#LifeIsGood  #WalkersvillePeepsRock


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I Have a Few Questions…

Life is full of decisions. Important decisions. Some of my recent conundrums have included:

  • should I extend my therapeutic massages to 1.5 hours from 1 hour  do I have to tell my husband I extended my therapeutic massages to 1.5 hours from 1 hour?
  • how many hateful things can I tweet at Metro before they are able to identify me and sabotage my SmarTrip card?
  • do we pay for the new catalytic converter or just buy a new car?
  • is it appropriate to fire off a list to Honda with car parts that should not disintegrate/stop working/need replacing before I think they should?
  • how many times can I use the words ‘money-grubbing SOBs’ in my list?
  • why the fuck didn’t I purchase the three year “any incident, including your own stupidity clumsiness” extended warranty for my laptop? (since I dropped it and ruined it right after two year extended warranty expired)
  • did the Geek Squad dude just snicker at my newly unwarranteed predicament?
  • how large of a metal dumbbell that your kid hits with the lawn mower — because the grass was too high for him to see it — will it take to render said lawn mower completely useless and in need of replacing?  (in case you’re wondering, it’s 3 pounds…3 measly pounds)Dumbbell
  • is an improvement on a report card for the third quarter really something to get excited about if it’s moving from a D to a C, with the following notation from the teacher?:Report Card
  • does this grade mean my 14 year old will be living with us forever, since the class is Life Skills?

Another challenge I’ll soon be facing involves my Achilles, which has gone all rogue and developed a partial rupture. A rupture my doctor and I conservatively approached with a walking boot, physical therapy, custom shoe inserts, and one incredibly painful — and not very helpful — steroid shot directly into my Achilles. Which begs another question…

  • is it ok to unleash an unrestricted stream of cuss words at the lunatic holding the syringe just how many cuss words is it ok to unleash in front of the nice doctor about how painful a shot directly into my Achilles is?

Next week, I meet with my doctor to schedule a time for the surgery. Recovery includes 6 weeks completely off my foot and the first two I am not able to drive a car at all. I’m fortunate it’s the left foot. If it was the right foot, I wouldn’t be driving for the entire 6 weeks.

So, I actually have one more question…

  • How many bottles of this is too many if you can’t walk/step/stand/put any pressure on your foot for 6 weeks?

Elixer

 


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Home

I usually write funny stuff. Self-deprecating stuff. Making fun of ego-driven celebrities stuff. And then there are times when I want to share something much more important.

Yesterday, my family and I were cleaning out closets to make a donation to the Frederick Rescue Mission. Our home had plenty of clothes, shoes and linens that we have outgrown or no longer need. We have an embarrassment of riches.

Our riches include more than clothes and linens — there is furniture, food, warmth in the Winter and — when there isn’t a major malfunction — cooling in the Summer. We have family we can count on. We own our home. Our kids play sports that require registration fees and lots of expensive equipment. We have really good health care through my employer, which is a boon when you have two boys. We have two labrador retriever mixes that we adopted from a rescue. Our cars are in great shape. The community we live in is overwhelmingly supportive and full of lots of wonderful people.

So when a friend on Facebook posted a poem, asking folks to read it in the context of the rampant state of anger and nastiness exhibited in today’s political climate, I did.

I thought about what this poem shares from the perspective of people who do not have an embarrassment of riches. People who barely have the basic necessities. Heck, some people who have only the clothes on their backs.

It makes me forever grateful and humble that my “Home” is not the mouth of a shark.

Note: poem copied in its entirety and not redacted for offensive language.

“Home” by Warsan Shire

no one leaves home unless
home is the mouth of a shark
you only run for the border
when you see the whole city running as well

your neighbors running faster than you
breath bloody in their throats
the boy you went to school with
who kissed you dizzy behind the old tin factory
is holding a gun bigger than his body
you only leave home
when home won’t let you stay.

no one leaves home unless home chases you
fire under feet
hot blood in your belly
it’s not something you ever thought of doing
until the blade burnt threats into
your neck
and even then you carried the anthem under
your breath
only tearing up your passport in an airport toilets
sobbing as each mouthful of paper
made it clear that you wouldn’t be going back.

you have to understand,
that no one puts their children in a boat
unless the water is safer than the land
no one burns their palms
under trains
beneath carriages
no one spends days and nights in the stomach of a truck
feeding on newspaper unless the miles travelled
means something more than journey.
no one crawls under fences
no one wants to be beaten
pitied

no one chooses refugee camps
or strip searches where your
body is left aching
or prison,
because prison is safer
than a city of fire
and one prison guard
in the night
is better than a truckload
of men who look like your father
no one could take it
no one could stomach it
no one skin would be tough enough

the
go home blacks
refugees
dirty immigrants
asylum seekers
sucking our country dry
niggers with their hands out
they smell strange
savage
messed up their country and now they want
to mess ours up
how do the words
the dirty looks
roll off your backs
maybe because the blow is softer
than a limb torn off

or the words are more tender
than fourteen men between
your legs
or the insults are easier
to swallow
than rubble
than bone
than your child body
in pieces.
i want to go home,
but home is the mouth of a shark
home is the barrel of the gun
and no one would leave home
unless home chased you to the shore
unless home told you
to quicken your legs
leave your clothes behind
crawl through the desert
wade through the oceans
drown
save
be hunger
beg
forget pride
your survival is more important

no one leaves home until home is a sweaty voice in your ear
saying-
leave,
run away from me now
i dont know what i’ve become
but i know that anywhere
is safer than here


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Crap…I’m Old Enough for AARP

In the Summer of 2016, I turned the big 5-0. It started in a rather auspicious way – with dragging my sorry ass around in a walking boot.  I had been diagnosed with a severely inflamed Achilles in addition to these sexy bone spurs:

Under Heel

As if the hot mess of new bone growth on the bottom of my heel — described by my doctor as “one of the largest spurs I have seen in a very long time” — wasn’t enough…

Heel only

…there’s this not-very-little-either crescent moon-shaped delight on the back of my heel.

I plodded along in the walking boot for over two months. I had special inserts created for my new multi-tasking work/casual/fancy shoes. Also known as tennis shoes.  Plus, I started Physical Therapy two times a week.

Given all the focus on limping, gimping, rehab, and not being able to drink due to medication (probably the worst side effect of all), I immediately forgot that AARP was doing its best to woo me into membership with direct mail solicitations every week.

In August, I was also reminded by my primary care physician that it was time for my first ever colonoscopy. Which, in an interesting turn of events, includes lots of drinking. But not the kind of drinking that gives you a fantastic buzz. More like the kind of drinking that gives you an intense appreciation for proximity to your own bathroom.

So as I prepped with purchase of enemas, Gatorade and laxatives, the purchase of an AARP membership moved further from my scope of attention. After the procedure, I didn’t give that AARP membership another thought. That’s because I was too busy celebrating the “excellent prep work by patient” notation on my colonoscopy discharge papers. Take that,  haters. I was no longer full of shit.

A few months later – and just about the time I was done with Physical Therapy for my Achilles — I started having some back pain. The pain was similar to what I experienced in 2007, when I had to have back surgery for a degenerative disc. After a visit to urgent care and a week of pain killers, anti-inflammatories, and muscle relaxers, I went to the ER because I wasn’t feeling better. In fact, the pain was worse.

So, the meds got stronger, I was sent for an x-ray, and I wished I had saved some of those colonoscopy prep materials. Because those anti-inflammatories and pain killers should be in a pharmaceutical category called clog-you-uppers.

AARP kept sending me reminder mailings about membership, but I was too busy trying to function while being looped out on meds that I didn’t do anything about it. Plus, I was focusing on the letter I had received from my doctor letting me know the x-ray revealed arthritis in my spine and we could chat about that at my next check up.

I was sent for more Physical Therapy to assess and then deal with my back issue. Lucky me – it’s only a bulging disc, pinched sciatic nerve, and severe sciatica. I have no feeling on the left side of my left foot because of the pinched nerve. But I get to keep wearing my tennis shoes with inserts, and at least no one has prescribed orthopedic oxfords.

The cherry on this sundae of “damn, girl, you’re old!”? During my PT treatments for my bulging disc, they put me on a rack, strap me in, and chain it to my body. Then the table separates, which elongates my spine to relieve the pressure of the bulging disc. It’s like 50 Shades of PT. Only, no sex. And no drinking.

the-rack

So I finally gave in. I signed up online for an AARP membership:

welcome

With 50 comes wisdom…and membership benefits. Because if you’re gonna be medicated, poked, prodded — and constipated — you might as well at least get a discount at The Outback for your trouble. Am I right?

 


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Fashion Weak

As the mother of two boys, I resigned myself long ago to the fact that when it comes to clothing, my choices to outfit them would be limited to dinosaurs, animals, super heroes, planes, construction equipment, stripes, and sports.  As they have gotten older, the choices narrowed even further to plain, minimal stripes, and (the very expensive) sports team/logo wear.

My boys hate the feel of jeans, so when we find a pair of sweatpants/shorts that fit and are deemed cool enough to be seen it, we buy them in every color they come in. Which brings us back to limits once again, as the color choices they have started gravitating to in their teen years are shades of grey, navy, and black. Hooray for the neutrals, because they will go with any of the outrageously expensive logo wear/sports team tops they pick up from the floor and sniff before shrugging their shoulders and putting on the offensive smelling item anyway.

Recently, we relented and went shopping for Fall/Winter clothes for our oldest and a few items to fill in the gaps of the hand-me-downs for our youngest. Because who doesn’t want to spend a Saturday evening in crowded rural mall, shopping with two teenage boys who could care less about clothing?

thisgirl

Our first stop was Old Navy. My husband and I spent a lot of time trying to decipher what “I dunno”, “whatever” and “sure” really meant as we held up options for our 14 year old to decide on. It got even tougher to tell what he thought as he moved into the non-verbal responses of “major eyeroll”, “shrug”, and “heavy sigh while snapping one’s head back”.

Which pretty much made me do this:

eyeroll

After finding a few sweatpants styles and some long sleeve shirts that fit – and buying them in the three neutral colors available – we headed to H&M. I’d heard the clothing was affordably priced. What I hadn’t heard about was how much I wouldn’t be hearing after being in a store that blasts hipster emo tunes. #OldPeopleProblems

The clothing options were minimal at best and we quickly determined that our decidedly non-emo sons would not find anything of interest. On our way out, I spotted this:

img_1919

$30 for a sweatshirt that comes with holes already in it? Uh…that’s a big “fuck no.”

I immediately snapped a picture and commented, “If you boys want something like this, I’ll take you to my parent’s house and you can pick one from granddad’s closet. For free.”

Next it was on to American Eagle, where I spotted this and told my husband “if you become a stripper and wear these sparkly blue underwear, perhaps we can afford all these clothes we have to buy the kids.”

img_1985

The salesgirl smirked and asked if she could help me find them in my husband’s size. My husband then rolled his eyes, shrugged, and let out a heavy sigh while snapping his head back as he headed toward the door.

By the time we got to the fourth store, my sons’ and husband’s enthusiasm for the whole shopping excursion had really waned (as if it going lower than from where it started could even be a possibility). Their diminished enthusiasm was almost inversely proportional to their growing hunger for dinner. My oldest spent a solid three minutes in the store, where he picked out 3 shirts (same style, different colors) and quickly made a beeline for the exit to discuss restaurant options with his dad and younger brother.

Our shopping trip had taken less than an hour and a half. I think we spent more time on dinner at the restaurant when you count driving to it, waiting for a seat, ordering, eating, paying the check, and driving home.

Fast forward to last night and just three weeks after buying the new clothes. My oldest walked through the family room and I yelled “Stop!”.

“Are those a pair of your new sweatpants?”, I inquired.

“Yes,” was his response.

My close to 6′ tall, size 13 shoe-wearing oldest stood while I took a photo. The new sweatpants are already too short.

img_2049

He’ll just have to hope he doesn’t grow any taller because I can’t update his wardrobe with new navy/grey/black sweatpants every three weeks.

Boys’ fashion is certainly not for the weak of heart. Or the weak of wallet.

 

 


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My Mom Interest Survey

At the beginning of each school  year, my kids have to fill out forms with answers to a bunch of questions so that the teachers will know who the potential trouble-makers are have a sense of the personalities in their classroom.

My youngest started 8th grade this year and filled out the form. He showed it to me and you can certainly understand why I was looking for an eraser after reading it:

nick-form

In case you can’t read it, the second of the two common activities he does when he gets home is watch YouTube. Just another check mark in the #ParentingWin column, folks.

I did have to admit, though…it is Nick. 100%.

It also got me thinking. How would I fill out a form like this today? So I typed up a copy of the same questions, printed it out, and started writing in my answers.

becky-form-final

Hard to read? Here, let me make it easier for you to get a peek into my psychosis psyche.

top-half-final-version

bottom-half-final-version

What this really tells you about me is:

  • I keep telling myself every day “50 is the new 40”
  • I think this election has been a shit show, and out of 350 million people, I can’t believe these two yahoos are the best candidates we have to put forward
  • I’m a snob about the tequila I drink
  • I must have skipped the chapter on parent/teacher conferences in What to Expect When You’re Expecting
  • I read too much People magazine
  • At best, my taste in movies is questionable and relatively non-Oscar worthy
  • I shouldn’t be in charge of the music playlist at a kids’ dance
  • I am deluded into thinking “perfect” wives cook, clean, and do laundry
  • I fully acknowledge my husband didn’t get the perfect wife (but you shouldn’t feel too bad for him — because I’m so awesome in spite of not cooking, cleaning, and doing laundry. And humble. I’m very humble.)
  • And finally, I think karma needs to step up its game against people with no/a very questionable moral compass

I’m looking at you Trump, Hillary, and  fuzz-out .