Tuesday, August 30, 2016

'cause what she's doin' now is tearin' me apart

The subtitle of this post is: fucking food.

For the last few years I have been battling an extreme selective eater. But as a busy working single parent I am often not with my child for 3 meals a day. Then we went on a week long vacation.

Sloane eats these things and exactly these things: Quaker Oats brand chocolate chip granola bars, Velveeta Shells & Cheese, Mac and Cheese by Kraft (only the original no different shaped noodles), chocolate milk, sausage patties, bacon (but only microwaved and not if it's crunchy), Tyson chicken nuggets (only if prepared between two paper towels otherwise they are too greasy and served with only original Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ sauce),  pancakes w/ syrup, Campbell's original condensed chicken noodle soup, occasionally a french fry or two, toast or a bagel with butter, peanut butter but rarely, chocolate or brown sugar poptarts, Chocolate chip mini muffins, bananas, Lunchables (but only the turkey and she eats only the turkey), soft pretzels with cheese, plain tortilla chips and nacho cheese, pepperonis (sometimes will eat a few bites of pizza), hotdogs (microwaved between paper towels because again, too greasy), chocolate ice cream (in a dish not a shake, no syrups or toppings), popcorn, chocolate chip cookies and Wendy's spicy chicken nuggets (although she never eats a complete one she leaves one bite of each one at the end saying it was too spicy or too crunchy or too greasy).

That's 24 foods people. Seriously.

Nothing is a big motivator. People said she will get hungry let her go hungry.  I did for 3 days. She only drank water and ate the first breakfast.

She gags over foods. Nothing no amount of bribery works. I can promise her the moon and everything on her Christmas list to try a bite of something and NOPE.

So vacation made me extremely anxious. Plus we were with my boyfriend, his two sons, and his parents for most of the time and for the first time.

Sloane had also never traveled to speak of.

The second night I sobbed myself to sleep.

It sucks that my kid has basically defined her life at this stage with this. It begins first thing in the morning with her worries and obsessing over what we will eat that day. If breakfast goes poorly it colors the whole day. Then I have to decide what to war over for the day. Every meal time and before meal time is a negotiation and I am fucking exhausted.

In the meantime do you realize how much stock we put into kids eating habits.  Being a good eater means you are a good kid, you're respectful of authority, you're healthy and growing so well. Being a picky eater, well you're none of those things and you often don't only miss out on praise you miss out on rewards.

You never get a break from this until they are asleep. And then it just starts over the next morning.  My pediatrician says not to worry, she isn't malnourished, she's growing etc. BUT for socializing and now for school lunch period this has made our lives hell.

As a parent I've bullied her, bribed her, tricked her (yes I tried the Jessica Seinfeld book) shamed her, coaxed her and starved her into trying to get her to eat and none of that feels very good for me or her.

We hardly ever go out to eat. Restaurants = stress for her and then stress for me. I'd love to go have a girls night out with her but so many reinforcers are about food in our society. Let's get coffee, go out to eat, have a frozen yogurt together, let's get donuts etc.

Holidays also make me want to just stay home and hide, because then there is the added pressure on the host/hostess to try and find something to make Sloane happy and frankly sometimes with food that just isn't possible, even if you serve one of her requests.

I'm also aware that this tends to be seen as a parent being too permissive, not insisting on nutritious foods and sometimes being selective themselves. Which does nothing to solve the problem and only serves to make the parent feel like a bigger pile of shit than they already do. Actually, I am not a selective eater. I eat extremely well, am an adventurous eater and have been from a young age. Anyone who says that a parent is too permissive is guaranteed never gone through the same problem with the same type of child.    And I am not what would be considered a permissive parent by any other standards.

Everyone knows country music is for when you are sad....title from What She's Doing Now by Garth Brooks

Friday, August 26, 2016

I pray the water wash away the memories and the cost

What happened? What happened was you can't heal a wound if you keep picking the scab off, and a watched pot never boils and all that stuff.

East Hampton, NY 
One day, the super great human being I am dating now found my blog. Because it isn't a secret and it's linked to my Goodreads. And he read a few of the posts, mostly about how brokenhearted I was without my exbf, and how in love with him I was. And I know that this was hurtful to my current bf, and when looking at it all together like that, it was quite a shrine and it was more than a little bit unrepresentative of my life as a whole.

I reverted it all to draft form. And he said, oh he'd just not read my blog, no problem I should have s pace to say whatever I want.

But I also was looking at those posts an awful lot more than I needed to and this place where I used to write everything became about one thing.

So I'm keeping it in draft for now.  And I'm going to write about other stuff. Because there's a lot of it. And I'll write about love again too, because I have stuff to say.
Me on a beach in August, 2016 

title is from God of Ocean Tides, Counting Crows (like I'd come back with any other band)

Monday, December 14, 2015

dressed in the fabric of a world unfolding

Dearest girl,

Today you are 5. The last five years...that's a musical, you know.  It doesn't work in this case because it's about a broken heart. It's about a love shown backwards to the audience, that way it breaks their hearts too. Which you know me, you know I like that stuff. Because it's real. Plus Jason Robert Brown wrote the music so it's quality.

I like things that are real. The last five years have been the most real of my 35.  I came to the NICU to feed you and see you and breathe you in and the lady saw me at the locked door through the tiny window and told her colleague: "it's Sloane's mom, open the door." I'd never been anything but "Shannon" and from that moment when you were just a day old I never was "just Shannon" again.

So the last five years have been full of heartache and regret and anxiety.  I married your dad. I tried for many years with him (before you came and after) to make us work and we couldn't.  My heart broke. I divorced your dad. And nothing during any of that was worth much to me unless it was a measurement of your happiness.  So, I felt like a ratty mom. A mom who gave up on keeping her child's family together. I felt selfish.  But slowly because of you I rebuilt my shaky confidence in my motherhood. Every time you'd put your chubby hands out to me I grew a little bit stronger. "Your beauty trumped my doubt." (it's a lyric by Mumford and Sons, there's always a lot of supplemental reading when it comes to your mother's writing).

So it wasn't perfect. But somewhere I had and still have this dream in me that our happiness isn't mutually exclusive. And in fact that if you didn't have a mother who could be happy you could never learn to be happy either. And I think a lot about that hymn from when I was a little girl that we would sing in church and I hope it's true: "farther along we'll know all about it, farther along we'll understand why. Cheer up my brother, live in the sunshine, we'll understand it all by and by."

There are people who will tell you when you are older that you shouldn't have regrets, or that they in fact don't have any regrets.  I will tell you that if you become a parent this idea is utter bullshit.

I have one million regrets and they are all, every single one (besides everything I did in the year 2001) about you. They stem from how I could've made you happier, or how I could have prevented you from hurting.

I try to best navigate by how to make you not only feel happy but how to help you turn into someone who is kind and intelligent, a woman who doesn't fear any part of herself, a person who passionately seeks but who is not too involved with herself to help others find.  It's hard to navigate. I mess up a lot. You'll know soon: I'm bad at maps, directions, and even Siri gets me lost sometimes.

Until I figure out the next step though, I have a constant companion. You sing silly made up songs a lot of the time, some mornings you are quite grumpy, some days you tell me you don't want to live with me (some of those days I don't want to live with me either), but when you are away the sound of the quiet is different. The quiet when you are asleep is a blissful quiet, sweet and colored with the exhaustion from going through another day together. The quiet when you are gone feels like a humid room. It gives me time to think about all the missteps and how to correct my navigation and it makes me count the hours until the quiet is replaced with your voice.

For everything that ever hurt or will hurt, I am sorry. I promise I think of you more than you will ever know. I am prouder of you than anything I've ever achieved.  And I love you more than I love anyone else including myself.

Happy birthday, all I want for you is everything good and many, many more.  



the title is from a song by ani difranco, I hope there is a woman musician who does for you what she did for your mommy a long time ago...the song is called The Slant. The full lyric is this:

I am a work in progress
dressed in the fabric of a world unfolding
offering me intricate patterns of questions
rhythms that never come clean
and strengths that you still haven't seen

Friday, December 4, 2015

You can keep all the memories

I'm not listening to Adele, but Gwen, she's a different story.  Adele can keep her calling up so long after breaking his heart. Gwen saying this split wasn't the plan and writing "Used To Love You" that I can get on board with.  

Just wanted to check in because I'm still living and shit. 

Gwen Stefani who's performance will give you the feels Used To Love You for the title

Monday, November 23, 2015

She don't want anybody to see what she looks like when she's down

I broke my rules. On the weekend. On the weekend without my daughter (see also: extra quiet and lonely).  I looked at Pinterest which is like a barrage of visual and mental "your heart is broken! don't you miss him!" madness.

And I went downstairs. Where I have his stuff in a box. Including his cologne that smells like the best thing on the planet and sort of like the old lady who swallowed a fly...I guess I'll die.

Not actually. I just feel like her. I did something silly and felt like a fool and like dying or such.

As soon as Sloane's party is planned Pinterest is finding itself deleted again.

Thankfully I have avoided that bitch Adele.  And there is one thing I absolutely refuse to concede to: any of these "broken" sentiments.

I am not broken. Lies and wasted time and empty promises are just that. I'm the kind of badass bitch who has been through a lot worse than this and still manage to run an amazing life and look pretty fashionable while I do it.

No one is going to ruin my track record.

She don't want nobody near, from the Counting Crows for the title 

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

When the morning comes, let it go, this too shall pass

In my early twenties, I like many other women my age and older was obsessed with Sex and The City.  I identified (still identify) with Carrie. The longsuffering, overthinking, terrible man choosing albeit fashionable Carrie.

On Sundays I'd watch SATC with my very best friend and a total Charlotte, Breann.

So Breann over the years has taken to describing my relationships in SATC characters. I've had way too old for me Aleksander Petrovsky (must be in the name), I've had my sensitive and wonderful Aiden that I destroyed chasing who I thought was Mr. Big at the time. And Now I have my very own Jack Berger.

Hollywood kisses with a post-it note ending.

What I'm beginning to come up with is maybe there isn't a Big and maybe Big was a giant douche anyway. And maybe, just maybe, I'm not a Carrie. I mean I'm not a city girl. Maybe I'm more like the teacher from Stuckeyville from the other show we never missed, something more original, more obscure. Maybe I'm just a Carol Vessey. Looking for her Ed Stevens.

title from OK GO: This too shall pass 

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

You don't need to change a thing about you, babe

How To Mend Your Broken Heart in 7 Steps 
(Badass Bitches Only)

1. Uninstall Pinterest for 4 months.
You're welcome. 
2. Fuck Adele. Yes, I know, Adele's new album drops next week, yes I know she won a crap ton of Grammys. DO NOT DOWNLOAD. 

3. Your smart phone was made for break ups.  Use all functions available until emotionally stable enough to delete.  a) HIDE all the pictures. b) give him a new name that reminds you to STOP that behavior this instant, missy! c) delete the playlists d) block that number baby

4. You are not friends. Therefore you are not "following" on apps you are not "friends" on FB.  This one hurts but rip that disgusting band-aid that's hanging from your scraped up ego off. And throw it away. You also need to unfollow his sister.  Don't forget his mom, even if she did send you a message indicating she thinks her son is a complete moron.  Do it. And do it now.

5. Congrats you are a girl.  You are allowed through society's patriarchy to post a GORGEOUS selfie as your new profile picture to every social media outlet you have available.  If he posts a selfie to FB he looks like a desperate weirdo or a total douche bag (unless he's under 21). But you my dear, you should look flipping gorgeous every time he searches for you late at night (or even if he doesn't, whatever he does, he totally does).

6. Post sappy things only where they WILL NOT, CAN NOT get back to him (that's why you do #4 and #5 first and keep a blog that he doesn't know about).  Everywhere else you have your one new picture (don't look desperate girl) and nothing but rainbows and roses.

7. Have an ample supply of straight men in your life who will tell you he's a dick and he's out of his mind.  If you don't have any use your brother and download the Griffin House song "The Guy That Says Goodbye To You."  (also staring at Griffin House is implied in this directive).  Gay men are great too, but this one's better coming from a guy who likes vaginas lots.
Again, you're welcome.

Post title from the hottie with the hair and eyes and arms, Griffin House - The Guy That Says Goodbye To You Is Out Of His Mind