Me, As Well, Also, Too

(WARNING: Mega-political rant with a deep dive into sexual abuse/assault territory.) Back when the #MeToo movement was first getting started, I sheepishly confessed to my therapist that all I could really bring myself to say about it was a Facebook vague-post with just the hashtag and nothing else. She -- correctly -- told me that NO ONE was owed or entitled to my story. No. One. And then, like millions of women, I watched Dr. Christine Blasey Ford's testimony last week. It was brave and powerful and we were not owed it or entitled to it, but I was deeply grateful to her for telling it. And in front of such a...well...less supportive and understanding audience than say, Facebook or my blog comments. And then! I watched the president of the United States of America (after managing to keep his mouth shut for...what? Five whole days?) stand in front of an audience and mock her, repeatedly. (Using the same turn of phrase -- "I don't remember! I don't remember!" -- he used when mocking a disabled reporter so many moons and scandals ago, back before the pivot to presidential that never came.) And I watched the faces behind him erupt... Read more →


Thirteen

Noah is 13 years old. This is not a drill. Noah, the baby, the turtle, the little sign-language a-BALL!-loving toddler who went to kindergarten with a backpack as big as his entire body, is now a teenager. He asked for a cake and candles, but no singing. He wanted to shop for his presents himself, and no wrapping paper. He played video games most of the day, but also coded a new level in the Sonic the Hedgehog clone he built by himself. He asked for pizza for both lunch and dinner, but agreed to order it off the grown-up menu. He requested a day off from chores and for permission to repeat his favorite annoying Internet meme as many times as he wants. (Usually he's limited to just a few times before I remind him that it's gotten annoying in the very best way I know how to communicate that point to him, which is to start belting out the chorus of Let It Go. He slaps his hands over his ears and shouts "OKAY OKAY I GET IT I'LL STOP.") He may be 13 years old, but he's still as Just Noah as ever. Read more →


Then ; Now

If you or someone you know is struggling with thoughts of self-harm or suicide, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text CONNECT to 741741 in the United States. I no longer recognize that version of myself. The version from the hospital, from the bathroom floor, and from long before the bathroom floor. The version who was sloooooowly being crushed under the weight of her anxiety, the one who walked around with a pained, twisted smile pretending to enjoy a conversation or activity but who was more than likely too preoccupied with arguing with some corner of her brain hissing thoughts like run, panic, window, glass, goodbye. The version who wanted to stay home, to stay in bed. For whom Jason would cautiously lock up all the Tylenol and Advil before leaving her alone. That particular safeguard started happening just over a year ago; we didn't get there overnight. The descent is slow and sneaky. I blamed my work stress, household stress, the election, that fucking garbage-haired racist buffoon, my period. There was always something I could point at and blame for why I was feeling so unsettled and unbearably anxious. (The depression, on the other... Read more →


ELVISSSSSSSSS!

So this happened! I wore my finest (and only) actual wedding dress and a bridal tank top, which is a thing that exists! Look at Jason aiming for silly but still landing on just plain handsome. He's so annoying like that. (Visible bra strap earns you +1,000,000 bonus Vegas points.) (While cracking up during the wedding ceremony earns you +1,000,000 marriage points.) We did it! And then promptly left the fancy vow renewal certificate in our Lyft. (Our driver found it and brought it back. Thank goodness, otherwise our 20-year marriage might have been INVALID or something.) Read more →


Going to the Chapel...

...and we're gonna get re-married. Jason and I are headed to Las Vegas this weekend for our long-planned vow renewal celebration. And yes, that's my original wedding dress in all it's poofy, polyester glory. It's coming with us, somehow, along with the rainbow Vans. (And no, the dress doesn't really still fit. I was 20 years old and lived on saltines I stole while waitressing! I shall be wearing it as a skirt and pairing it with a suitably tacky t-shirt for the occasion. Jason also has some hilarity planned for his outfit.) Anyway, we're excited! Vegas! Elvis! Ball gowns and Hawaiian shirts! It's all very us, to say the least. Read more →


Another Year, Another Foot They've Grown

Are you sick to death of other people's awkward back-to-school photos cluttering up all your feeds? WELL TOO BAD. HERE ARE MORE. AS REQUIRED BY BLOG LAW. I'm sorry. I don't make the rules. Seventh grade, still defiantly wearing a Minecraft shirt in the face of Fortnite, which he refuses to play on principle. (I don't know what that principle is exactly, he's just very adamant about not playing Fortnite. Up yours, peer pressure!) And fourth and second grade, respectively. We never have our act together enough to make cute little signs or anything, but I did manage to find some Post-Its to write their teachers' names and bus numbers on since they were both suddenly nervous about getting lost in the school they've been attending for years now. (To be fair, it's massive. I'm pretty sure you could fit my entire high school in the cafeteria.) (My high school didn't even have a cafeteria. Or fact-based science curriculum!) I did have my act together enough to make him eggs, however. He was very happy with them. He also came home SUPER EXCITED because the cafeteria now has a SALAD BAR. (A salad bar! My school definitely didn't have that.... Read more →


Ready to Meme

Work really took over my attention this week...(along with three camp-less boy children running around the house during their last gasp of summer vacation and all I can say is Bionicles. Bionicles everywhere. Places where no Bionicle should be, like in the dishwasher, my bed, the goddamn toilet.)...so I'm going to cheat today and re-post something from social media that most of you have already seen. But what better way to spend your Friday than watching it again and again and again, because honestly it gets funnier and funnier and funnier each time? Jason installed a new motion-activated security camera by our garage, and about 10 minutes after I tasked Noah with taking the recycling out to the curb, he sent me the following bit of footage. A post shared by Amalah (@amalah) on Aug 28, 2018 at 1:31pm PDT Classic Noah. Downright ICONIC Noah. Read more →


Beach House Rules, 2018 Edition

We're back from a lovely week away at the beach, where perfect days were sandwiched between hellish sleepness nights because the residents of the apartment above us apparently liked to run laps in combat boots while rearranging all the furniture between 3 and 5 a.m. We did not particularly love our rental this year, because 1) SEE ABOVE, and 2) We discovered during dinner one night that it was possible to very easily and accidentally trip the lock on the sliding door leading out to the second-story, screened-in deck from the inside, thus locking your damn ass outside. We were all completely stuck for about 20 minutes until we managed to get the attention of some people coming down a nearby flight stairs (who, thankfully, were NOT the nocturnal Sumo wrestlers from directly upstairs) who came inside our unit and rescued us. Meanwhile, we'd left the stove on and all the smoke alarms started going off, and I don't think I need to even TELL YOU who specifically and "accidentally" tripped the inside lock, right? Mmm-hmmm. Baby Ike is back on his bullshit. Also, 3) This was on the coffee table and haunted my every waking moment, because WTeverlovingF. But,... Read more →


Better Now

Quick question. No, wait. Two questions. 1) WHYYYYYY DID I BUY THEM THIS 2) How long before the batteries die a malicious early death and I can claim that oh, sorry, those are SPECIAL batteries that we don't have and need to be special-ordered and delivered via yak from Malaysia, meanwhile, why don't you leave Simon with me and also, bring me a hammer. For reasons. Unrelated. Other than the beep-borping-insanity brought on by that damn thing, I'm doing pretty well. I still hit the occasional rough patch where either the depression or anxiety spike, but since I finally have the ability to know what life feels like WITHOUT those dueling bastards, I can actually stop and recognize that okay, time for some self-care or mindfulness or deep breathing or sunshine or whatever the fuck. It's been a really, really long time since I could even tell the difference. The kids are doing really well too -- they're all such funny, matter-of-fact sorts who are just like, okay, Mom was sick but now she's getting better. She takes medicine and goes to a lot of doctor's appointments to stay better and out of the hospital. Yay Mom! I'm hoping that... Read more →


Friday Happy

We're coming up on another anniversary -- our three-year anniversary with Yellow House and our new little neighborhood. I'd say it's still going well. I love the 1) curious attempt at an apostrophe between their names, 2) the abandoned attempt to spell "friends" before opting for the much simpler "BFF" and 3) the fact that Ike went back later and wrote the names of several other neighborhood friends because he didn't want to hurt anyone's feelings. This has been Friday Happy, something I just now made up as an excuse to end the week with something that made me smile real big. Read more →