10.20.2011

TIC: toddler-induced-coma

I'm so tired. Having a toddler is one thing, but a sick one is a whole different ball game.

She is strong. She already knows how to guilt me, too.

Monday felt like Thursday and now that it is Thursday, it feels like it is a different month entirely.

I've been chasing her around with the nose sucker for a few hours. I have a 900-square-foot home and she somehow always gets so far from me.

I've also had to come up with medicinal cocktails since she has now decided to gag up medicine. Of course, when I mix it in her juice - she never drinks it.

Last night she had blueberries in a thick, bubblegum pink amoxicillin. Yum.

Tylenol usually goes well with a spoon full of peanut butter.

I haven't been this tired since she was a newborn.

And she just keeps going. Sick, but still energetic. I lay on her bedroom floor in a toddler-induced-coma while she tramples me with her play horses, dripping snot and yelling at me for reading the books out of memorization with my eyes closed. Really, I thought it was a cool trick?

Maybe this is God's way of getting me to minimize my words and "be still..." because I sure don't feel like talking or moving.

Well, time for a milk and gas drops cocktail.

10.18.2011

controlling the word vomit

Minimize my words? Now, how am I supposed to do that? I'm a writer for goodness sake! The reason why I write is because I have so much to say and so little time to say it. Isn't that why we all write? We have A LOT to say. 

The really good talkers are the ones that even talk in their sleep. They can't even sleep without talking! And those are the ones you need to pay attention to. My grandmother still says, in her 51-years of marriage, that she stays up and listens to my grandfather, waiting for another woman's name. Still hasn't happened.
My husband talks in his sleep. It normally has to do with work or me. Obviously, the two stresses in his life: job and wife. Joy. Sometimes he is talking so clearly that I will respond, only to then have silence and figure out he is sleeping. 

But talking can be venomous. Words, destructive. As women, don't we always hang on to the negative things we've heard when the good things seem to go in one ear and out the other? 

And gossip. It is true that those who gossip to you, are probably gossiping about you. Ever think of that?  

Well, I like to talk and I like to write. I am someone that when inserted into a quiet and awkward situation, I will be the talker. I'm usually hoping that someone else will put on the hat of the conversation holder because almost every time, I spat out something I wish I hadn't said. 
Word vomit. 

Talking too much will always cause me some sort of regret asking myself, "Why did I say that!?" 

Minimize my words. I keep hearing it. And look, I have a lot to say about it. 

"Likewise the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.  (James 3: 5-6)

That is probably why we like texting so much. It is to-the-point and we have time to plan out our response. 

"Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry." (James 1:19)

If I was slow to anger, then I would be slow to speak. But because I sometimes anger quickly, I say a whole mess of word vomit that I don't mean. And we know that we can't take back things we've said. 

We've all met those who are not afraid to say anything and funny, they usually always say that about themselves. "I don't care who hears me!" 

Well, wouldn't you care if you thought about your little child that is watching you and wanting to be just like you? If she is watching you sit on the phone and gossip about someone that she knows, she now thinks that is cool, part of life, something she needs to do. 

Everything we do matters and everything we say matters. We can't cuss and then tell our children not to do it. That isn't fair.

Throughout high school and college, I was determined to be a writer. My fault was always writing too much. "Minimize your words." They would say. Slashes would dissect all the non-needed words throughout my sentences. 

After I would read it, it was so much clearer. "Only 600-words!" the professor would require and of course, my first draft would be nearly 1,000-words. Then going back through, I would carefully take out unnecessary words. 

It is said that we speak nearly 16,000 words per day. What if we only spoke 5,000? That is cutting out more than half of our daily words. Words that are mostly, "Um" or slag or cuss words that don't even add anything worthwhile to what you are trying to get across.

Minimize my words.

"Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent, and discerning if he holds his tongue." (Proverbs 17:28)

10.16.2011

urban/rural divide a uniting force for community transplant

While this column nuzzled into the pages of this paper nearly one year ago, I was at home adjusting to being a new mom and still adjusting to little ol' Roseburg.

A girl who was used to expensive late-night dining, black cocktail dresses, checking email while driving, waving down taxis and a mall bigger than Riddle had to quickly adjust to a pickup that wouldn't allow for all her luggage, a husband who didn't know how to text message, a town that starts buzzing at 3 a.m. and a lot of hickory shirts, Carhartt jeans and even worse — Beaver fans.

Granted, while a lot of these adjustments were town-oriented, I also believe God moved me here in order to slap me with reality before I became a mother.

This wasn't easy, and I'm not only talking about the new definition of “late-night dining” I had learned being a new mom. It wasn't easy adapting to a small town while also having to listen to everyone in the city say, “I can't believe you live in Roseburg,” or asking “When are you moving back?”

I even had people ask me if I was going to have our baby in the city. They figured there was no safe place in little Roseburg. Yes, we all know how those small-town children turn out — I married one — and don't tell anyone, but I think they turn out even better than the others.

Well, opposites make the best relationships, don't they? If Roseburg would have been the big city I planned on living in, I would have found myself bored and probably very broke. Like Carrie Bradshaw said, “I would have literally been the old lady who lived in her shoes.”

I also wouldn't have found what a diamond in the rough this county is.

For instance, I had no idea that real friends actually bring you soup when you are sick or throw you a surprise baby shower. They call you just to see how you are doing or tell you that you are completely normal to eat a whole box of brownies or bawl during that television commercial.

I also had no idea how faithful one community could be, always opening its arms and offering its prayers.

I didn't know there was food that existed that was so incredibly delicious and yet so high in cholesterol. Home of the Indians? More like home of the casserole. You ladies sure can bake.

Ah, Roseburg, you are a pretty special place filled with very unique people. And I don't mean how-many-beer-cans-or-couches-can-you-collect-in-your-yard unique (by the way, please clean those up). I mean unique as in if it were me against the world, I feel like this community would be at my defense.

Thank you, Roseburg, for providing the best group of friends; thank you for keeping the faith; thank you for still reading your newspaper — and for some reason, reading this column; thank you for putting in a Costco; thank you for not having traffic; and most of all, thank you for giving this city girl a chance.

 
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