Tuesday, June 26, 2007

au natural

For natural Smokey looking eyes, smudge in your eyeliner by creating tiny circular motions near the lashes to blend in the color!

(Because this looks completely normal, right?)

Thursday, June 21, 2007

All good things

...must come to an end.
She's gone.
They took her off the ventilator this morning so her family could say their goodbyes.
They didn't completely un-medicate her, so she wouldn't suffer as she gasped her last breaths.
Memorial service tomorrow. She will be cremated.
Today was their 37th wedding anniversary.
"Until death do us part."
I have/had many wishes about this journey, none of which will/did come true.
My last words to her as I stroked the peachfuzz on her bald head: "Get some rest. I'll be back tomorrow". She wiggled two fingers at me, I'm certain. I wiped the drool from around the tube in her mouth, and squeezed her toes as I left.
I want to call her cellphone just to hear her voice again.
She was only fifty-seven.

8/18/49 - 6/21/07


Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Discussion at the sink

G: "If we ever have to go through this, would you be upset if I just blew my brains out so I didn't have to suffer?"

Ever try to brush your teeth while crying?

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Crap on a cracker

Over the past year since my very good friend has been diagnosed with lung cancer, our outlook has been hopeful. Her, with optimistic denial, me with pessimistic worry. Every time I asked about the latest scan or treatment, she was all "I'm feeling pretty good/it's working/no growth/it shrunk..." Her admissions - too numerous to count - for blood transfusions, IV fluids with hefty doses of potassium, pneumonia, liver/spleen/kidney issues - all met with a big shrug-off. Hair loss, weight loss, inability to control body temperature... "I'm doing great," said she. I didn't believe her. She wouldn't allow me to assume otherwise. What could I do? Smile, and keep my fingers crossed.
She phoned me Tuesday night; would I like to come over on my next day off, and maybe pick through some of her old clothes that didn't fit any more? I saw a glimpse of a red flag on the horizon. She sounded great, said she felt good, had been sewing and quilting again. Finished some projects she just hadn't had the energy for.
On Wednesday, she was in the hospital.
Visits to the ICU suck. She is not doing great. Her sister, the one with balls of steel, is living in reality. Her husband and sons are in denial. The nurses are awesome. I am... well, I just am.
When I left today, she was being sedated to be put on a ventilator.
I can't get my mind off of how she looked, with the tubes and the machines, thrashing in the bed, trying to get a breath, her family numb with shock, strong men with tears in their eyes.
And yet we still hope.


My secretary was crying, sniffling back little tears, telling a small group of coworkers what was wrong. I was concerned, so I approached her gently, and asked.
Her boyfriend's brother's wife had lost their baby. 7 weeks. But they can try again in a month.
"It's just so sad, because I really wanted them to have a girl!"

Monday, June 04, 2007

Defying Social Convention

Etiquette is going to be sorely abused.

The Senior Year of the average high school student is saturated with "plans for graduation", including - but not limited to - ordering announcements, being sized for cap & gown, the taking of special portraits, and purchasing unnecessary little trinkets and baubles that are soon forgotten once you have the diploma in hand. I look back at some of the shit I bought and wonder why on earth my daddy let me get them. Did I really need a 20-page blank booklet for autographs and unrelated nonsense at the price of $12.95+tax? That "School Crest" (emblem) pendant($24.95+tax)? A memory book that I never completely filled out? ...aaaand so on...

So it goes to follow that The Boy got the special senior portraits, the special embossed announcements, the cap & gown, the graduation photo package, and plans were made for far-away family to attend (grandparents from VA, and my brother and SIL from OKC). I requested off for a week. It was magical.

Imagine my panties being in a twist when the principal calls to tell me that my pride and joy isn't allowed to walk.
The Boy managed a 63 in a core course (failing is 64 and below). Rather than being HUMANE and SYMPATHETIC, they just put their collective foot down and said "No". Phone calls were made, begging was vigorous, tears were shed. "It's district policy," I was told. Repeatedly. Mind you, this is THE ONLY district in this whole greater-regional area that has this stupid policy. No concessions would be made.

Don't get me wrong. I do understand their point; if you don't have the credits, you didn't earn your diploma; you don't graduate=you don't walk. I get it. I also know about 7 other families who's children made them proud in this very manner, yet were still allowed to participate in the graduation ceremony. It's a given that he has to make up the course in summer school, and then he will get his diploma. I tire of being told this little nugget of news. I know how it works.

I wanted to see my only child walk across the stage and be handed a rolled-up piece of blank parchment.
He participated in the first two rehearsals, before the final grades were submitted. He was even allowed to show up for cap & gown pictures (individual and group). The class gets to keep the garb. His name was in the newspaper with all the others. For all intensive purposes, he graduated. But he wasn't allowed the ceremony. Rather, WE weren't allowed to enjoy it.

As an aside, I will note that a total of nine (9) students were denied the privilege of walking. Out of a class of 40-some students. Four were for grades, three were for showing up stoned on the last day of school, and two were for the most heinous infraction of all: disobeying the rules set forth for rehearsals. Oh yes. We were sent a terse little referendum warning that missing a practice was not allowed, being late for practice was not allowed (but slightly more forgivable than skipping), and god forbid you wore the wrong outfit to dress rehearsal - that was the icing on the cake. Boys are to wear DARK PANTS with DARK SHOES and DARK SOCKS, and a WHITE COLLARED SHIRT with a DARK TIE. Yeah. I'm not sure who peed in who's cornflakes, but two poor kids (and two very pissed-off parents) bit the big one here. Not sure if it was missing a rehearsal or dressing wrong, but lawsuits were threatened and the principal with the little dick was unfazed. The superintendent, of course, stood right behind him. (bending him over I'm sure)... Every goddamn year there seems to be some riot or scandal over their "rules" and their refusal to bend them just a teensy bit. It is ridiculous. You have to remember this is a small community. Depending on who you know and what you do to elevate your status means you might get a break once in a while.

Anyway, where was I? Oh yes, making excuses for my darling child.
Summer school for him will consist of one (1) online course that runs three weeks from mid-June to early July. That's it, and he's done. He will have his diploma.
Then, I'm sending the announcements with the senior pictures, and the graduation pics (when delivered). I don't care.
I spent a boatload of money on them, and as far as I'm concerned, he graduated. Sure, most of our close family and friends know the cold hard truth, but I will not be embarrassed by it. I don't care if they send him money or not. If they do, it will be held from him until summer school is done and the transcript is complete. But he's still my baby, and he made it through (mostly).

Is that terribly wrong?