Sunday, November 29, 2009

i don't think i ever shared this...

pine cones, originally uploaded by jpenick999.

although i feel like autumn is already over and winter is well on its way, i just thought i'd prolong the fall a wee bit longer and show you part of a little pine cone photo shoot i had after a walk a few weeks of the many reasons that i love Saturday mornings in November.

Have i mentioned that i'm in shock over the fact that it will be December this week? where did November go?

Saturday, November 28, 2009

you saw the outside, now take a peak inside

at home for the holidays, originally uploaded by jpenick999.

i promised you pictures...

holiday home, originally uploaded by jpenick999.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving is over...

holiday '08

...and this morning i woke up as Curtis was heading out the door for a half-day of work. I should be used to this holiday schedule of his, after more than three years of marriage, but today, I am sad that he doesn't get the time to enjoy a full four-day weekend with me. Hopefully he'll get home soon.

I used my morning alone to get a lot of stuff done around the house. I did dishes and three loads of laundry, changed our sheets and more. Now I'm relaxing and waiting for my man to come home so we can go pick our tree.

The house is decorated and ready. The days of huge, fat, round trees are over...this year we're looking for a skinny tree that's not so tall either. And if the weather holds up, we'll be decorating the front of our house for the first year ever too...will post pictures soon.

*photo from last year

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

things i'm thankful for, part four


I’ve said it before, I have a lot of good friends that often offer simple, much-needed reminders to me.

This week was no exception.

I was blown off by a friend a few days ago.

Despite the reasoning, I was offended, frustrated and annoyed.

I went to vent and then realized my venting buddy no longer works at the desk next to mine. So I emailed my husband.

And I vented and to be honest, it did make me feel a little better.

That is, until he responded…and in turn, kindly put me in my place.

“Give her the benefit of the doubt,” he said upon other things, “Grace, extend grace.”

It was the admonition I needed to hear, and although my pride is still a little bruised, I won’t hold it against her, or him.

things i'm thankful for, part three


To My Dear and Loving Husband

If ever two were one, then surely we.

If ever man were loved by wife, then thee.

If ever wife was happy in a man,

Compare with me, ye women, if you can.

I prize thy love more than whole mines of gold,

Or all the riches that the East doth hold.

My love is such that rivers cannot quench,

Nor ought but love from thee give recompense.

Thy love is such I can no way repay;

The heavens reward thee manifold, I pray.

Then while we live, in love let’s so persever,

That when we live no more, we may live ever.

*by Anne Bradstreet

the day before thanksgiving

I am home today.

I woke up with a migraine, and maybe for the first time in my life (or maybe second or third) I was actually relieved to be sick. To stay in bed for a few more minutes, to take it slow, then work from home for the rest of the day. I needed it. I needed the quiet kind of head's down day to tie up all my loose ends before the four day weekend.

I took an early morning outing to go buy coffee beans after my migraine broke. Curtis told me we were out of coffee on his way out the door. After five years of being caffeine free, I now know that I need that jolt in the morning in order to focus. This is especially true after taking migraine meds. The thick fog over my brain needed espresso before I got to work.

Upon return, I made myself a coffee and got to work, writing and emailing before lunchtime. At noon, i ate a piece of leftover chicken from last night's dinner and while I chewed, I trimmed three pounds of brussell sprouts for tomorrow.

Although I only have two dishes to make for tomorrow's festivities, but anything I can do ahead of time, will keep me relaxed tomorrow.

My first dish is sauteed brussell sprouts and bacon. I made them a couple years ago for my mother-in-law's house and have been requested ever since.

The other dish I am making {for my mom} is homemade cranberry relish. I read this recipe on a blog last week and decided i had to try it. It's simple and fresh, i can't wait to see how it turns out. Here is the recipe, just in case you care to try it as well:

{Noel Piper's Cranberry Relish}

1 cup honey
1 orange - quartered and seeded (peel left on)
1 - 12 oz. bag of fresh cranberries

Put ingredients, in order, into the blender. Pulse until ground but not pureed.
Refridgerate. Serve hot or cold.

So now I'm back to work. No rest for the weary...although a day spent working at home is sure helping.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

things i'm thankful for, part two


As I mentioned in my last post {and many of the posts that came before} - we don’t always get what we want, right when we want it.

The lesson is still being learned, but for the lesson, today I am thankful.

We are walking a dusty, well-traveled road, I am coming to learn. We are learning ancient lessons, from Abraham’s wife in the Old Testament to new stories from new friends. Our story is not unique, or new or special… {well, maybe special, because it’s ours, and I’m possibly biased}

We are learning patience and faith and how to hope for something without holding onto it too tight, in that white-knuckled way that so often grips with a feeling of fear and lack of control.

We have let our grasp slip. Not our longing, but our one-dimensional mindset that says that thankfulness can only come when you get what you want.

Because we are still waiting but in the midst of it, still filled with thankfulness.

Monday, November 23, 2009

things i'm thankful for, part one


In this, the week before Thanksgiving, I am particularly reminded of how much I have to be grateful for.

I think about it and my eyes well up and I’m rendered speechless.

We have learned {are still learning} that a thankful heart doesn’t just come from getting everything we want.

We have learned that sometimes, how we cultivate the most thankfulness is when we truly look around and as cheesy as it sounds, can count our blessings.

We really don't have to look far to name numerous things that fill our cups, which leads me to one thing I am thankful for this week...

About three or so months ago we stumbled upon a new church. After leaving our old one due to some obvious differences we spent about a month going nowhere. It was the detox we needed to start another church hunt. We knew from past experiences that this is neither a fun nor an easy process and this time proved it proved to be right once again. We spent the next month or two trying out churches around our neighborhood, most to no avail. We left each one feeling bored, frustrated, annoyed and uninspired.

As we began to make a list of other churches to try, getting further from our home, my friend {Kate} emailed me. She had read about a church online in our relative area as she and her family were looking for a new church themselves in Dayton.

Needless to say, we decided to check it out the following Sunday. It wasn’t exactly located in our neighborhood, but across town on the West side. After the 30 minute drive we pulled up to the school that they rented out on Sunday mornings. We walked in and were not immediately bombarded by people like we had been at some churches. That was kind of nice.

It was a small church and very casual. We sat down and a few minutes later, a girl about my age with an adorable blonde-haired, blue-eyed baby sat down next to me and introduced herself. She was so nice – and unlike many of the churches we’d visited, she seemed so normal and down-to-earth. While we were still talking the music started and church began.

The service was simple, but moving.

After church we met a few other young couples that also came from the East side. They asked us if we wanted to grab lunch back in our neck of the woods – so we went to Tommy’s in Coventry. We left feeling hopeful that this could be the place for us. It felt like we had been there for years. Conversations were easy and we had a good feeling.

And now, a few months later, as far as we can tell, we think this is the place for us. We’ve met some genuinely nice people and we leave on a weekly basis feeling challenged and refreshed.

Which leads me to yesterday. We were invited to lunch over at the pastor’s house. Now, we’ve been friends with a few of our former pastors, which may or may not have been the downfall of our church relationships. We often knew far too much of the workings of the church and in the end, they failed us, like humans are known to do.

So, you could see our apprehension for getting to know another pastor and his family.

Imagine our surprise when the afternoon led to a lunch that lasted nearly to dinner. We sat around eating pizza and salad and talking until the clock approached 5pm. We got to know each other, laughed, told stories and genuinely had a great time. They had invited a few other people from the church that they thought we’d get along with – which we did, it was a pleasant way to spend a beautiful Sunday afternoon.

They were just normal people, people who never thought they’d be the pastors of a church one day. They weren’t uptight and didn’t act holier-than-thou. They made jokes and were sarcastic, yet when it came down to it, we could tell they cared about each other and genuinely cared about getting to know us too.

We drove home in that wound-up/exhausted state that usually accompanies a conversation that lasts hours. And as the sun set on the highway behind us, we both knew that this was our new church home.

It is different than anywhere we’ve ever been. The people are normal, not pretentious or odd. They have been open about the problems that accompany them in real life, which in turn, makes us open about ours. And it doesn’t feel weird or forced, it feels natural and right.

And that is one of the things I am thankful for this week.

Friday, November 20, 2009

unwind just to wind back up again


This week I haven’t even had a chance to breathe. Okay, I’m being overly dramatic, but seriously…I haven’t cooked one meal, haven’t done one load of laundry, haven’t loaded one dish into the dishwasher…work has gotten the best of me and now I raise my little white flag and thank God for the weekend.

Unfortunately the weekend will probably be just as busy as the week. I will be catching up with everything I meant to do this week and more. I’ve got bills to pay, laundry to finish {thanks dear for starting on it}, dishes to do and stuff to prepare for next week’s Thanksgiving festivities.

See, this year we’re celebrating Christmas early with Curtis’ side of the family. Because we won’t be together on December 25th, we decided to celebrate early this year, hence the mad scramble to purchase, wrap and prepare for Thursday. I’ve gotten most of the shopping done already, but there are a few loose ends. I think there will be no rest for the weary this weekend.

Add to that a much needed trip to Target and the grocery store, an attempt at making my own Christmas cards, a company bowling party on Saturday night for Curtis’ work and a lunch with the pastor {and his family} at the new church we've been going to, it should be an action-packed weekend that's for sure...

I’m getting tired just thinking about it

so tonight, i put on sweats the minute i walk through the door {well, that's not entirely true, i do wait to change until getting up to my bedroom}, catch up on our Thursday night shows, spend time with family and unwind.

unwind, just to wind back up again

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

two kidneys...check


Would you like me to explain?

okay, if you insist.

Today i had my followup apt to discuss next steps with my gynecologist.

After one last post coital exam that came back ideal, i was scheduled for a spur-of-the-moment ultrasound to look at my kidneys.

Why, you ask?

Because it's very common in women with a unicornuate uterus to have only one kidney too. Often when they find that the uterus is underdeveloped, there is a high likelihood that other organs around that area are too.

So, unfortunately my first ultrasound did not occur in order to see a little baby in my belly, but i did find out that i do, in fact, have two kidneys in tact!

So what next?

Well, we're going to wait and try and wait some more.

He and I both agreed that there is no need to rush to the next step.

He suggested that we now try and wait and try some more {for about 3-4 more months} and if nothing still, we will move forward and i will have a laparoscopy.

And what's a laparoscopy you ask?

Simply stated, a laparoscopy is a procedure where they put a little telescope through your belly button to check out your insides. {this time i'll be put to sleep, which i'm actually pretty relieved about}. While in there, they can also do some other procedures too, if needed, but we're not there yet, so no need to fret.

All in all, it was a good apt.

I've been told many times to breathe, relax and enjoy the process...and although we are having an on-again, off-again love affair with this entire process, i really am trying to take that advice and just enjoy the ride.

Monday, November 16, 2009


"We have a good life when we manage to live with both satisfied and unsatisfied needs, when we are not obsessed by what is beyond our reach."

-Kjell Magne Bondevik

Saturday, November 14, 2009

a lesson on letting go


I thought long and hard about writing my last post. I debated, rolling the words over and over on my tongue, before taking the plunge. But finally courage won out and before I knew it, the story was written and the post button had been pushed with a quivering finger.

You see, part of me likes going through the motions of everyday life, knowing that most people I interact with haven’t a clue what’s going on behind the scenes of my life. It’s liberating - a contradiction, I know.

I find that I sometimes I write differently knowing that certain people read or have read my blog. Sometimes I am more open, sometimes less. Sometimes I edit myself for the fear that my words will be interpreted in a certain way, misunderstood, other times I bare my soul, letting readers into hidden secrets, giving thoughts where thoughts weren’t solicited.

When I first found out my mother-in-law was reading my blog, I’ll be honest, it was a bit unsettling. She would compliment my way with words, tell me that she had dreamt that I was writing a book. They were all nice sentiments, but to be honest, it made me self-conscious. I found myself writing a little differently then, self-consciously, I found myself choosing different subject matter, writing with a different tone. I felt like she was looking over my shoulder, checking up on me, on us, and our marriage {all of which she wasn't doing at all, she was just being supportive and interested in me}. I think she stopped reading months ago.

Then my dad started reading. He is an open kind of guy, in touch with his emotional side. He tells me when a post makes him cry, leaves me messages on facebook about how much he likes my blog. Mentions stuff I have written about, in conversation. Even checks it when I’m over his house, to see if I’ve written anything new. Yes, it’s awkward, and I get embarrassed, but in the end, I have to remember that he reads because he cares. And I’m glad he does, that she does. I’m glad that those who visit this small space regularly, find something to keep coming back for.

So when I realized that I had suddenly spilled the beans about my blog yesterday at a work lunch, I was suddenly struck with the knowledge that I cannot control who reads this thing. And to be quite honest, that is part of the fun of it, isn’t it? Writing to an unknown readership…sending words into the internet abyss. It’s comforting. It’s exciting, but it’s also kind of scary.

There is a part of me, however, that has a deep-seated fear of letting the various corners of my life intersect - and I’m not exactly sure why that is, or where it stems from.

I am an introvert, and I am shy, yes, but I am not painfully private {I wouldn’t be writing a blog if I was}. I enjoy the idea of people being able to read what I write and have a glimpse into my life. Friends and strangers alike. It is a lesson on letting go – of giving up control and the worries that come with caring too much about what others may think.

It’s strange to be talking to someone and they mention something that they could have only known from reading my blog. It feels like a breach of privacy, but of course it is not. It is awkward, but I’m not sure why. But isn’t the goal of writing, to be read?

So today, as I think and write, and become self-conscious and try to brush it off, I am remembering that this little blog of mine started off just for me. No one read it and that was okay. I wrote for myself and that was enough.

So today, I remember a promise I made to myself, long ago, before people ever cared what I had to say – Whatever I write, I will always, first, write for myself.

"No man is an island," said John Donne. I feel we are all islands - in a common sea."

-Anne Morrow Lindbergh, from A Gift from the Sea

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Let's get real, shall we?


Do you want to get real? Because I think I'm ready to. Honesty is the best policy, after all.

Would you like to know what I’ve been beating around the bush about for a while now?

I have found in the past few months that the more I open up with people, the more I find that I am {we are} not alone. The struggles that we face, are, in fact, the same struggles others face. Pain, fear, longings unfulfilled.

So, here goes nothing…{my heart beats a little faster when I type the words…}

We are trying to get pregnant. {shocker for some, old news for others}

We have been trying for a little over a year now {13 months to be exact}.

It started as a scare, a pregnancy scare, which, when it came back negative, bore the truth from my heart.

I wanted a baby. {we wanted a baby}

That was last October.

I will spare you all of the ups and downs from the past year {because they may be the makings of another post altogether, or a whole other blog, or an entire book…maybe one day}, but I will say this: the road has been rough, but the walk has been amazing.

Amazing you ask? You question my way with words, do you? Yes, I said it, amazing.

We have had good months and bad months, and some days have been harder than others, but as the pages on the calendar flip, one truth remains – it is out of our hands, and to be honest, we wouldn’t have it any other way.

We subscribe to the thinking {call it a religion, perhaps} that God is in control. We believe that He’s not only in control, but he cares for us. So, during the months when it would have been easy to give up hope, we were learning a very timely lesson of trust. And a gracious lesson on peace.

We knew early on that even for a “normal” couple with no known or pre-existing conditions, it could quite easily take well over a year to conceive. So, as discouraged as we sometimes got when it was obvious that “this month” wouldn’t be “the month”, we continued to trust in the perfect will of God.

So, last month {October}, when the “trying” phase reached a year, we decided that I should make an appointment with my dear, sweet gynecologist – Dr. Klien. A grey-headed, veteran doctor with a soft-spoken voice and kind, grandfatherly words of wisdom.

He reminded me that this process of creating life couldn’t be rushed and that it would happen in its own time. But, he also said we should move forward with some preliminary testing.

{This is the part that if you aren’t sure you want to know THAT much about us, you should just stop reading! Remember, you’ve been warned…}

He then scheduled for me to have a post-coital exam around my predicted time of ovulation.

As planned, I went in for the exam. As I had predicted, it was a few days too early in my cycle. So, I came back two days later to do the exam all over again. It was a Saturday morning. He took a look, took a couple swabs and ordered my husband to have a some tests done as well, just to cover all our bases {this was something he wasn’t overly ecstatic about, but it was for a good cause, wasn't it?}.

In the meantime, he scheduled me for a biopsy of my uterus for the following Saturday.

A week passed and i found myself back in his office for my biopsy. I won’t lie and tell you it was painless or a breeze, because it wasn’t; but I will say that I had already set it in my mind that no pain would be too great – for the end reward - a child. So, I clenched my teeth, wiggled my toes and coughed when they said to cough to take my mind off of the impending discomfort.

The pain only lasted a minute, and only led to small cramps for a few days, and in the end, all tests {including his} came back normal. That was the hope, right? That they wouldn’t find anything and that they’d just tell us to keep trying and it would happen in its own time.

The doctor then told me to call him on Day #1 of my next cycle {assuming it would come – which of course, it did} and after relaying the good news of all tests being a-okay, he wanted to schedule me for a hysterosalpingogram.

Long word, right? Well, let me explain what it is.

Simply stated, a hysterosalpingogram is a procedure where they inject radioactive dye into your uterus and take xrays as it “spills” through your fallopian tubes. In doing this they will a.) see if there are any blockages and b.) clear away any “debris” stuck in either of the fallopian tubes. But as I learned on Tuesday, there is also a c.) it will show if there are any other “conditions” in regards to the uterus and tubes.

So, Tuesday was my scheduled hysterosalpingogram. I asked my mom to come with me because, after the biopsy, I was nervous about the pain {turns out, that wouldn’t be the issue at all}.

We got there early, and found ourselves waiting. And waiting some more. Two hours later they finally called me back. A sweet, curly-headed apologetic nurse took me back and explained everything. I got undressed and asked her about the pain level. She told me that she’d had one done and it was really nothing. I believed her. Her eyes didn’t lie.

Then i met the doctor. Luckily, he was also kind, and funny, which helped, as he was having me laugh throughout the entire procedure, helping keep me distracted and entertained throughout the uncomfortable process.

Upon meeting him, he also explained to me the procedure, how they would "open me up" with a contraption with a light {it was pretty rad actually} and send a catheter with a small balloon on the end, up into my uterus in order to inject the dye. We would then all watch on the screen as the radioactive liquid flowed down through my tubes. Or, that was the plan at least.

The pain was minor. Slight pinching and cramping. I remember breathing through my mouth to stay still and steady. We watched the screen, like an old black-and-white motion picture, it was strange seeing my own interior, but fascinating all the same. It kept me preoccupied. And then he stopped and started talking. With my mid-section under the xray machine, he explained to me what he was seeing.

Only one fallopian tube “spilled out”. The other was out-of-sight. Upon further examination, he explained, it looked like I had what is called a Unicornuate Uterus (UU), which basically means that I have an abnormally formed uterus {usually due to underdevelopment}.

Smaller than most, a UU usually only has one working fallopian tube.

“But remember, all you need is one,” he reassured me.

“At this very moment, I have two patients, both with a UU who are on their second healthy pregnancy,” he went on.

Although I wasn’t panicking, his honest tone settled my already calm spirit.

As he was taking the catheter out and finishing up, he went on to explain that there were risks, but nothing he and Dr. Klein couldn’t handle. With a UU, there is an added risk of miscarriage, but he was encouraged by the fact that I haven’t had one yet. There is also the risk of pre-term labor and delivery, since the uterus is smaller than normal, a baby just doesn’t have as much room to grow {although he said this isn’t always the case}. They often only find out that a woman has this condition during a c-section of a perfectly healthy and average-sized baby. It is most likely also the reason that it has taken this long to get pregnant.

As I got up and dressed, I chatted with the nurse. She had kind eyes and walked me back to the waiting room to meet my patient, waiting mother. Her last words to me were, “Good luck with the matter,” as she smiled and waited at the door. That made me smile. "The matter," I thought to myself.

I know she was just trying to speak in code in front of all the other waiting patients but her choice of words still made me laugh. The matter. Good luck with the matter.

I left in good spirits, but anxious to do some research of my own. After we left the hospital, we decided to go out to lunch, and have a little retail therapy. We talked. I told her what the doctor told me. I was not anxious, although maybe I should have been. I was at peace. I still am at peace, actually, knowing that all of this is not by chance, or by punishment, but by the hand of an all-knowing and merciful God.

Later that night I finally got a chance to google “unicornuate uterus.” My research pretty much matched up with the doctor’s words. I read blog posts by women who are dealing with the same thing, read forums of pregnant women that have a UU and women trying to get pregnant with a UU and women who already have children although they have a UU. And my peaceful spirit was given even more peace.

I then shared my findings with Curtis who also believes in the sovereignty of God. He was not swayed. We both believe that all things happen for a reason.

So what now you may ask?

We wait. The doctor who performed my hysterosalpingogram on Tuesday, was going to send the slides to my doctor. He also said he was going to give him a call to get him up to speed. He said he would call me.

So now we wait. And do as my doctor reminds me every time I’m in his office, “Keep trying, because one of these days you may just be surprised by the results.”

So, why do I tell you all of this? And why now, after an entire year, would i choose to break my silence?

I have thought long and hard about this, and here are my reasons:

Because far too often, I find that someone I know had been trying for months, even years before they found out that they were pregnant and all I saw was the nine months of pregnancy, and in my ignorance, thought that was the "start" of it all.

Because I used to just assume that if you had a baby, it was always a quick and easy process to get there.

Because I think it’s more normal than even I realize to have to keep “trying," and to endure month after month of built up hope and then negative results.

Because I appreciated finding the openness of others – strangers – online and having the privilege of reading their stories, to help me understand my own.

Because I want to know that I’m not alone, and that maybe along the way, you’ll realize that you’re not alone either.

So, as my {our} journey {because it is not just my journey, but ours as husband and wife} progresses, I will continue to update…and when the road is slow I will continue to muster the courage to share what else is going on – inside and out.

I hope you don’t mind – because remember, I did ask you if you were ready to get real. And when you were warned that you might just find out more about me {about us} than you may want to know, you kept reading.

This afternoon, as I was thinking about this post at my desk, the song No Envy No Fear by Joshua Radin came up on my Pandora. The words are beautiful, and the music is haunting. The combination of the two whispered to my settled soul tonight –

“have no envy, no fear.”

If you’d like to {listen for yourself}, please, go right ahead…

Thank you for listening and have a good night.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

on autumn

a season to remember

"Everyone must take time to sit and watch the leaves turn."
Elizabeth Lawrence

We are learning so much in this season of our life...too much to go into right now, so as i ponder, let deep truths sink in and reflect and try to be still, i'll leave you with a few of my favorite quotes on autumn, since it is, after all, my very favorite season of the year.

"Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns."
George Eliot

"It was one of those perfect English autumn days which occur more frequently in memory than in life."
P.D. James

"Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower."
Albert Camus

*Oh, and if you've ever wished you had something like photoshop, but a lot more simplistic and affordable {ie. free}, you must check out {picnik} very easy-to-use and quite fun, actually.

oh what a day


i don't even know what else to say at this point...except thank heavens that it's over.

the day started off with some major anxiety for a doctor's apt that i didn't want to go to. Luckily, my mom came with me for this one and after waiting almost two hours - the test wasn't nearly as bad as i thought it would be.

The first hour in the waiting room i was nervous...bouncing my legs and checking my email constantly, to try to take my mind off of the impending pain.

The second hour i began to mellow - just wanting to get it over with.

I'll spare you the details, but i was met by a saintly nurse and a funny doctor, making the daunting procedure not that bad.

Results were almost instant and, while not ideal, did take the huge weight of unknowing gently off my shoulders.

We then rewarded ourselves with a nice Panera lunch and a quick stop into the nearby Old Navy and Marshalls for some retail therapy {of which i did not partake, but my mom got a great pair of flats}.

After a quick stop at home, i was back out the door to my next apt.
This one was over quickly and painless enough - thank God.

Now i'm home, catching up on emails and work before i'm going to chock it all up to a long and quite stressful day and kick back with last week's episode of Project Runway and just be.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

C is for Crave.


rave. This week i have craved time more than anything else. More time to do conquer my to-do list. More time to read, to cook, to sit and stare. It was a busy week. Busier than we've had in a long time. But, it turned out to be great. Well, some of it at least. It was a week of canyon-like highs and lows. Friends and dinners and music and mojitos and tears and confusion. It was a week of choices and baby steps and acceptance and trust. It was a hard week, but a good week, which makes me so thankful for a Saturday with no plans.

We sit at Starbucks. It's 11:47 am and we watch a cop pull up. He pulls up next to the window where we sit, gets out of his car, looks nervously around the perimeter of the building, walks back the other way and draws his gun as he walks out of sight. We sit and watch. There is really nothing to see. Curtis puts down his books and stares curiously out the window.

"If i tell you to drop to the floor, you would do it, right?" he asks.

I laugh.

"Yes darling," I answer and snicker as another cop pulls up.

I am used to living in the city {in urban suburbs, at least}. I am used to seeing strange things around my neighborhood and distinguishing {or trying to distinguish} between simply fear and danger.

My mom and I thought we were being broken into a few weeks ago. A man came to her front door late at night when we were alone. He started with ringing the doorbell - for ten minutes. We decided not to answer. It was late, we were alone and we weren't expecting anyone. Ringing the doorbell then turned to banging on the door which quickly turned to kicking the door.

That is when just a little nervousness turned to fear.

We ran upstairs, each gripping different phones, she called my dad. I called 911.

It was dark, we couldn't see his face. He might've heard us upstairs calling the cops because he ran to his car, got in, shined a flashlight on the front door and drove off.

We stood shaking, waiting for the police to show up. Which they did. Two twenty-somethings with an attitude. After a couple snarky questions, they left to patrol the area.

We went to sleep that night scared and confused.

A week later my mom was relaying our drama to my sister. My sister started laughing.
She went on to say that that night she ordered a pizza that never came. After a while the delivery man called her, clearly upset.

He said that he came to deliver the pizza and noone answered the door.

She told him she never got a knock on the door.

She asked him what address he had.

Her read off my mom's address.

She laughed.
Only then did my mom start laughing and let out a sigh.
Then she called me, retold the story and I laughed to - and after a week, finally exhaled.

The cops are gone now and we go back to our laptops. He is studying lean operations as I study the makings of the human psyche. fear and cravings and the desire for more.

Today I delight in time spent doing what I have wanted to do all week.

A favorable mix between getting things done and savoring the joy of getting nothing done.


Did you notice the lovely "C" that began this post? Isn't it lovely?
If you would like your own, visit {daily drop cap} for their charming alphabet creations, complete with the html code for blogs and websites.

Friday, November 6, 2009

I do have it pretty good, I guess…


There are some days, usually Sunday evenings, for example, that the inevitable occurs,

And I remember that the next day is a Monday and I let out my weekly groan.

Then I usually turn to Curtis and whine, "I just had my Sunday night blues."


Whether it hits me at 2 pm or 11 pm, its occurrence is a staple in my Sunday routine.


I think this is pretty typical for most people that work a dawn till dusk job {sidenote: the time change has been kicking my butt this week}


But sometimes I think I've got it worse than most.


I dream about working from home,

And on the rare day that I am able to {usually due to a migraine} I savor every peaceful minute of the day.


But last night, as I arrived home from a "supper club" event with some work friends and my man {and some of their men} I am reminded that I have it pretty good.


I enjoy my co-workers.

I enjoy their company {most of the time} inside and outside of work.

We have fun together.

Our significant others even have fun together.

That is something I haven't had at many previous jobs.


Yes, there have been a few.


But you have to understand, we spend a lot of time together {I regularly spend much more time with them throughout the week then I do with my own husband}.


We are like family.

We joke like family.

Laugh like family

Roll eyes like children.

Bicker like siblings.

And work like dogs {the family dog}


And last night we cried together.


And even after 40 + hours spent together most weeks, we still enjoy leaving work a few minutes early to grab a table and a few pomegranate-ginger mojitos to get to spend more time together, laughing and bickering and joking and rolling eyes…and yes, even tearing up a time or two.


So, this coming Sunday night, when I'm about to turn to Curtis and complain about the impending Monday morning, I will try to curb my whining and remember, I really do have it pretty good.

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