On a lighter note…

Facebook just told me I uploaded this picture two years ago – which doesn’t make any sense because it’s got to be about 5 years old. But my point is: LOOK AT MY BABIES. Sometimes these flashback tools in social media serve no other purpose but to remind me how freakin’ adorable my kids used to be. Not that they’re not beautiful now, but they’re not ADORABLE…these two kids in this picture are so damn adorable MY EYES HURT. It’s hard to believe that angelic face on the left just loudly exclaimed this weekend, “MOM! I poop a poop as big as a snake!” from the bathroom.



I’m Proudly Politically Correct.

I could share this meme/graphic out on Facebook because – as a non-believer – I guess the Bible kind of sounds like this to me too. But you know why I don’t? Because I’m not an asshat.


I respect the Christians in my community and my family way to much to post something disrespectful like this. Is it my belief? Maybe. I guess. I don’t even like claiming those words in any way but technically I guess I do sometimes think like this in relation to words in the bible. But do I want to broadcast it across social media and stand by it? HELL NO. Not in a million years. BECAUSE I AM NOT AN ASSHAT.

I don’t think of this as being politically correct, even if that’s what it is. I think of it as being respectful of an opinion or a belief that many people in my community hold.

You can still have your convictions, even if they’re contrary to popular opinion, and still be politically correct. 84% of people in my state are Christians who believe Jesus was the son of God. Being politically correct doesn’t mean my politics or beliefs have to align with any other group, I don’t have to become a Christian to be politically correct. Being politically correct just means I don’t want to be an asshat and alienate people with the way I choose to convey my convictions to my community. I’m a vocal atheist, almost everyone on Facebook knows that because I reference it often. But I try to convey that in a way that doesn’t offend the people who do believe Jesus was the son of God. Yes, that’s me being politically correct. But mainly? It’s just me being respectful and kind. And I don’t see anything wrong with that.


Depression Sucks. Pens Don’t.

IMG_9082So, the Zoot Girls had a rough night last night. Nikki is having a rough go of things as she inherited my empathy – which I’m thankful for – but also my sensitivity, anxiety, and depression. All of the negatives came to a meeting last night and she and I spent a lot of time crying together. I kept telling her there were doctors she could talk to that were much smarter than me and maybe they could help her more than I can but she says she doesn’t want to do that. So today I must make a call anyway, on her behalf, because I’m not equipped to help her how she needs to be helped. And I hope she’ll be okay with that.

But since it’s a heavy mood in my heart today as parenting is tough and anxiety and depression suck giant donkey balls, I’m going instead to tell you about a new pen. Uni-ball has always had the signo 207 which is my 2nd favorite off-the-shelf pen, but the 307 is new and is TOTALLY AWESOME. It’s now my 2nd favorite, booting the 207 to 3rd place. BUT. If they start making it in all the colors the 207 comes in? It may push the EnerGel Metal Tip out of the first place spot in my heart.

Send my beautiful daughter happy thoughts today, guys. She needs it.


From the mouth of babes…to my couch for therapy

I got towards the end of this entry and laughed because I always call my blog my “therapy” but this entry really is on SO MANY LEVELS. As I started hashing it out I realized that, if I had a therapist, this is probably what a session would sound like so OH MY GOD – y’all should totally skip this one because it’s boring as crap. Maybe just read the last paragraph for a summary.

But good for me! Free therapy!

I tend to carry annoyances around with me a little longer than I should. You know, annoyance at the tiny trivialities of life. Like an inability to find a baby sitter so you could go to a gathering of friends, or a child having an emotional weekend and crying every 3 seconds, or a husband choosing to sleep in instead of working out early meaning you COULD have worked out early after all, or the rain squashing plans to gather with the cousins at the pool. All of those things happened this weekend and none of them are catastrophic but they all annoyed me which made me…how do I say it…a bitch.

I just get short and grumpy when those little things happen. I become the sort of person that rolls her eyes a lot. I lose all patience with everyone, adult OR child, I just kinda let those stupid little complications in my schedule or life taint my interactions for several hours and it’s really stupid.

On the way home from the family gathering that did EVENTUALLY end up at the pool (thank GOD, my kids were HEARTBROKEN when it started storming right as we were leaving) Wes and I were talking about “Why should you be good?” which is one of the many questions I feel like would be easier if we believed in God or Heaven/Hell.

“Because then you are doing your part to make the world better. And if you are nice/kind/good then people around you are more likely to be nice/kind good. It’s how we spread joy, remember?”

As we were talking Nikki noticed we were taking back roads home and she kinda interrupted me and said, “Where are we going?” since she didn’t recognize the route. I ignored her and finished my sentence talking to Wesley. Donnie said something also to Wesley to echo what I had been saying and she asked again to which I said, “Jeezus, we’re going home, where do you think?!” And of course she started crying because I snapped at her and Wesley says quietly, “That’s not really spreading joy…”

Now…it was tainted with a little bit of snark but for the most part it was a very sincere statement and QUITE TRUE. So true it almost made me laugh, except I was still annoyed by all of the issues I had mentioned previously. And do you remember one of the annoyance triggers was my daughter’s fragile emotions? So her crying of me snapping didn’t help much.

I acknowledged how VERY TRUE what he said was and I apologized to Nikki profusely. I know that’s something we all do, we tend to just carry our frustrations with us and sometimes get grumpy. But having your 7-year old son point it out to you is a bit embarrassing.

My Dad used to talk about that a lot, about carrying those frustrations around with you and how they just make you grumpy. I think that’s when he would usually go for a run and as the kids get older, that will be something I could consider, but right now “Just going for a run” is easier said than done.

What do you do to shake off a funk?

I also read this article late last night about self loving and while I hate the literary device lately of “What X Person Does That You’re Not Doing” – I did enjoy the article. If you had asked me yesterday if I loved myself I would have said, “Nah, I’m really hard on myself…” – and how bad I felt being a crappy Mom last night would be a prime example. But I read the article and I do everything in the article! A LOT!

So then I was thinking, I am definitely more self-loving than I was 10 years ago. All of the things I do in that article are kinda new in the last 10 years, but am still very hard on myself, so maybe that is still a manifestation of self love? What if I just have learned how much I can do, how much I can change, how powerful I am and strong and so now I get really disappointed in myself because I just feel like I’m capable of SO MUCH MORE.

So that was a strange revelation last night…that maybe my newly growing self love is causing me to be really hard on myself at times?

When something negative happens, self-loving people will look for a way to take responsibility, rather than searching for someone to blame. They know that placing blame doesn’t solve the problem — it only cultivates anxiety and helplessness. By choosing to take responsibility, self-loving people do themselves the favor of encouraging change and acceptance rather than stewing in stagnation and suffering.

I basically think I take that step too far. So, after last night I say to myself, “Dude. He’s right. That was ALL ME. And if I can run 52 miles in 12 hours then I can learn to not snap at my kids just because my schedule got complicated.”

Sidenote: I just stopped an wrote the preface you saw before because I suddenly felt like I needed a couch to sit on while I hash this out for a person writing notes in a notepad.

ANYWAY. So! When I do stupid stuff like carry around annoyances from stupid complications in my life, and THEN take it out on the people I love, I’m going to be really hard on myself because I love myself so much I know I’m capable of better. Is that a thing? Loving yourself so much you’re actually quite hard on yourself?

Because I think it’s a thing. I think maybe we can love ourselves so much we set up too high of expectations?

Whatever the thing, I have a lot to think about today. I need to work on shaking off stupid frustrations that happen in life (the schedule complications are always the worst because when you think you’re doing one thing – like a party with friends – and then suddenly you can’t, it just puts me in the worst mood) so that they don’t linger in my behavior for hours. And I need to love myself REASONABLY. I don’t expect perfection from my kids, I praise them for effort all the time, so maybe I need to do that for myself. And maybe that same “expectation of perfection” is what causes me to be so grumpy when small things complicate my life. Maybe I just need to set more realistic expectations for LIFE, not just for myself.

Well, that may be the most boring entry I’ve ever written in the 12 years I’ve been blogging. Thanks for sticking with me if you made it to the end! JEEPERS.

For Your Reading Enjoyment

I slept late this morning. 3:58am. It’s a weird level of existence when that is late. I’ve been waking up around 2 or 2:30am (Not on race day, race day I slept until 4am, thank God) the last week or so. My brain just decides that’s the time to get up and I can’t turn it off. Part of it is stressing about real stuff like work or selling our house, but most of it is stressing about stupid stuff like what the chlorine is doing to my kid’s hair this summer. Why 2am is a good time to worry about that stuff, I’ll never know.

(What should I do for my kid’s hair? It’s like STRAW.)

But – I have two amazing links to share with you today about religion and gay marriage. The first one is a writeup for Mormons. I have very close friends and family who are Mormon, all who also support gay marriage, and I know it’s tough to try to be patient and wait for your church be on the same page as you are. I often think about how jealous I was when girls could become alter servers a few years after I was too old. WHY DIDN’T THEY CHANGE EARLIER? I know gay marriage is a lot different than Catholic alter servers, but I remember knowing the church would change eventually, and being irritated it wasn’t soon.

Maybe the sea change has already happened. (source)
Right now we’re in an awkward, in-between place where we’ve made this significant change in what we understand homosexuality to be, but have yet to follow through the consequences of that change. The Mormon Church has acknowledged that gay people are real and sexuality is not “curable,” but has yet to offer a tenable way for gay members to remain Mormon (or, for that matter, a reasonable public stance on what the Church imagines that non-Mormon gay people should do). Our current position is implicitly that gay people can stick around as third-class citizens, objects of suspicion and pity with limited opportunities for service and deficit social capital, and this simply cannot be sustainable–not if we want to be a church that offers everyone equal access to God and exaltation.

I’m optimistic, though, because I think the harder change is the one we’ve already made, in shifting our view of the ontological status of homosexuality. We now believe gay people are real, and I think we can sidestep the consequences of it only for so long. Telling gay people to just not act on their homosexual desire made a kind of sense as long as those people were imagined to not actually be gay–to be recoverable as straight people–but if gay people are actually really and truly gay, then this sort of policy starts to look like the whim of an arbitrary and cruel God. If we don’t believe in that God, perhaps it’s time to be praying for further light and knowledge to see our way out of this intolerable status quo..

I haven’t perused the comments this morning, but yesterday there were some great comments in her comment section as well.


The second link is just a Christian stance towards the “Persecution Complex” referencing the recent SCOTUS decision. There’s so much wisdom in this article and it actually spoke a lot to my heart and a lot to what I loved about being Christian. It made me miss the church for the first time in a long time. (Not miss it enough to return, I’m too far gone – grin, but I do miss some of the amazing messages I received from excellent interpretations of the Gospel.

For the sake of the gospel, drop the persecution complex (source)

Where is the concern for gay kids getting kicked out of their homes to live on the streets? Where is the opposition to LGBT bullying and housing discrimination? Why remain silent when Christian leaders speak in crude and hateful terms about LGBT people or support the criminalization of homosexuality overseas?

What the persecution complex suggests is that conservative Christians only care about bullying, oppression, and discrimination when it happens to them. If it happens to LGBT people, or to people in other religious minority groups, it is of little concern (or is tacitly supported). Compassion and advocacy are rooted in self-interest alone and Christian privilege is guarded ruthlessly, even if it comes at the expense of others.

The entry is long but you should read every word. It was hard to pick just one to quote. I just loved it so much and her description of her Faith and the Gospel and how she wants to live her life…that is what I love about Christianity. That’s what I want my kids to learn about the Church. In my community the few church leaders who have stood up for the LGBT community have faced backlash from their own churches and congregations and it breaks my heart. I wish more church leaders would take this stance because I still know of a kid know too long ago who went to a reparative camp. That’s still happening here. Kids are still afraid to come out or are still being shunned by their families. It’s not everywhere anymore, thank goodness, but in my state it’s still happening with regularity.

So! Enjoy those two readings while I get ready for my run. It just so happens one of my good running buddies needed early runs today and tomorrow, the two rare days my husband has off since he has a huge Tri Camp in Chattanooga this weekend. So! I’m looking forward to running WITH SOMEONE for a change! It’s been so long!