I feel like I have dodged a bullet



We all sit side-by-side in those uncomfortable chairs. We read old magazines from 2005 – we read newspapers from last week – we make small talk – we text – and we wait, and we wait, and we wait. We see red rimmed eyes, we see friends, partners, and family members holding hands and giving reassuring pats on the backs of those they wait with. We hear “.Mrs. Smith would you please come back with us for more pictures there’s something the doctor would like to talk to you about.” And we know that is secret code for we think you have cancer. We mouth I’m sorry when we know someone has gotten bad news. We pray, chant, meditate and secretly hope to whatever deity is around that it’s not our turn. As we look at each other we wonder what our personal stories are. We are someone’s partner, wife, mother, daughter, sister or friend. We worry about being sick, we worry about surgery, and we worry about dying.

I really worry about dying.

Friday was a really long day. I was at the hospital all morning having a lump looked at. The waiting part was the worst. You see, I have always had this feeling that it’s going to be my turn in the cancer barrel it’s just a matter of when. So many friends before me are part of this ugly club and I watched, waited, held hands, and worried right along with them. When I discovered this lump and I confirmed that this lump was truly here by my husband and then by my physician I just felt resigned.

Thankfully I have a really good circle of support. I have an amazing friend who lives in Minnesota who is a breast cancer survivor who has been through all of this shit. She talked me through my wait time and what to expect.

Thank you Kathy I love you.

I’ve had lumps before and I’ve been I think pretty calm about them because they’ve always been the same – however, this one wasn’t the same. It was different, hard, not painful, and it made my doctor nervous. When he got nervous I got nervous.

The weird part about all of this is that it turned out to be negative and it wasn’t really a lump it was an enlarged lymph node in fact I have got many many lymph nodes in my body that are enlarged- that is another issue and the puzzle that we have to solve next week but for today there is no cancer and I am so thankful.

So for today I feel like I dodged a bullet

Where were you and what were you doing on September 11th, 2001

We were of all places celebrating our anniversary at Disneyland with our then nine-month old. My niece had been born a little over a week earlier. My brother-in-law called us early in the morning and we feared something was wrong with our new baby niece. No, he wanted to know if we were ok and to turn the on television.

Because we were in Southern California I thought maybe he was concerned about an earthquake because they happen a lot of the time.

As it turned on the television and I watched a plane fly into one of the twin towers my mind thought this was an ad for a new Steven Spielberg movie. My brain wasn’t computing what was happening- Or what I was seeing for that matter.

My husband was just coming out of the shower and I said to him grab our son and sit down – “Your brother-in-law just called and something bad has happened in NYC.”

All three of us sat watching the television as we saw the second plane hit the twin tower and we both began to cry. We knew it was real, we knew it was serious, we knew that something horrific and life changing had changed and the world would never ever be the same.

My husband said without any emotion “We are under attack.” I remember taking our son from my husband’s arms and holding him close to me and apologizing to him. I told him mommy was sorry that something so scary was happening. He looked up at me and smiled only as a sweet innocent could not knowing the world around him as we knew it was in chaos.

We called our parents and told them we were okay and we were coming home.  They were worried we wouldn’t be able to get out of the city.  I reminded them who I was married to and if anyone could get out of the city it was my husband.  I was so thankful I had him with me and I wasn’t traveling alone.

Things then quickly began to happen.  We knew we needed to get out of Southern California, especially Disneyland.  There were reports that other planes possibly had hijackers aboard and headed for heavily populated places like Disneyland.  We then rapidly packed our belongings and in a very long line of other people checked out of our hotel thanking God the whole time that we chose to drive to Southern California from Oregon instead of fly. We must have said we were so grateful for driving instead of flying that day.

The drive home was almost like a caravan.  Many people began to make their way out of the city and head for various areas.  There wasn’t a plane in the sky except for a military fighter jet.  I had a sense of comfort seeing that.  I remember we talked about the why, the how, and who it might be.  We had our individual thoughts, concerns, fears and opinions.

We listened to news radio all the way home. I remember at some gas stations the gouging had begun and gas back then was $5.55 a gallon.

I was never more thankful or relieved to be in the safety of my own home when we returned. I remember on the trip home I began to try to contact for specific friends in New York City who I knew worked at the twin towers.  I was petrified because I could not get a hold of them. The waiting was agonizing. And finally we did hear from their families.

My heart is still broken for all of the victims and their families and friends and anyone affected by this horrible tragedy.

My love and prayers are with you all.

We need to help the mentally ill.

I had one of the scariest experiences ever today. I went to our local salon to have a manicure. I sat on one of the empty couches as I waited my turn. About 15 minutes later an older woman sat down on the opposite side of the couch. I was reading an article on my phone and I could hear her talking. I thought at first she was talking to me. So I began what I thought was a conversation with her. It turned out that she wasn’t talking to me she was talking to somebody who was sitting next to me who I couldn’t see. There was a magazine between the two of us.

I went back to reading feeling like an idiot realizing she wasn’t having a conversation with me. The conversation began to get more and more animated. The woman began to get louder and louder. I started to feel really uncomfortable. Her daughter who was 5 feet away from us in a manicure chair looked over at me and said are you okay? And I nodded and said yes I’m fine. The woman sitting next to me turned and looked at me and started screaming. The profanities were horrible. I thought her eyes were going to come out of her eye sockets. She kept clenching her fists and raving about wanting to hurt people.

By now I am extraordinarily concerned for my safety- I’m not sure whether to call 911 or prepare to have to take her down if she attempts to assault me. The nail techs around me were all Vietnamese and they begin to speak in very low tones that were soft in short bursts. Later I found out that they were talking among themselves and wondering if they should call the police.

Finally the daughter said to her mother to be quiet and the woman got up and started flailing her arms and I was just ready to protect myself when she grabbed her mother by the arm and walked her out the door. The woman then proceeded to pound on the windshield and hood of the car screaming about wanting to call the police because I had stolen her air and committed grand larceny- Or something like that.

The poor nail techs got up and went to shut the door and lock it. They were that scared. The daughter got her mother in the car and it turned out all her mother wanted to was smoke. Something she couldn’t do in the shop. It was a trigger for her and she couldn’t use her words. Then the outbursts began and she couldn’t stop herself. She was just so incredibly angry. Angry and raving and furious. And in between the raving she would mutter and it was low and guttural and it was just so scary.

Her daughter came back looking defeated and she began to apologize and I thought she was going to cry. She said her mother was a paranoid unmedicated schizophrenic. Her mom lived alone and did call the police a lot and they knew her very well. But she was unmedicated and refuses medication. Even sadder was after talking to the daughter for a short period of time it was evident that this woman as well had some pretty significant mental health issues.

The only way this woman can get any help is when the police are called and they take her in and put her on a 72 hour hold- Medicate her while she’s in the hospital and then after 72 hours they have to let her go.

Now while this scared the shit out of me it made me angry and sad that there’s not more help for people like this in our society. I realize that this woman refusing medication is her choice but if she’s not altogether and her mental health is compromised to begin with does she really have the capacity to make decisions for herself and her health?

This is all very disturbing to me. Very disturbing.

Why does time seem to fly by?



always have the best intentions. In fact, my best intentions are either at night or when I find myself busy with “other stuff“(work) that think about writing aboputting pen to paper and writing.

My friend Poolie  writes almost daily. She tells me she writes almost daily with strong coffee, soft music and incense.  She said its almost like a prayer. I can see where I need to incorporate some of that discipline in my life – a way to begin my day or end my day.

There’s many things I should be doing:

meditation, prayer, exercise 7 days a week of some kind, 8 glasses of water a day – the list goes on. And I keep meaning to do those things but I don’t always make the mark.

Instead I’m going to rock out to really loud music with my guitar hero guitar in my pajamas with some serious bedhead 🙂


When your mind won’t stop long enough to pause


Up until the past year I’ve never had a problem sleeping. I could lay my head down and in five minutes be out cold.

And I used to sleep like the dead.

Not so much anymore.

Everything affects me- Much more so than it ever did before.

I’m now sensitive to sound. It’s as if I have developed super sonic hearing. I swear to God I can hear someone talking 5 miles away. I hear every creak, groan, and crack the house makes at night. As much as I not to let my imagination run away with me with God knows what I might think – Aliens, home invasion, robbers, who knows. The truth is I’m sure it’s always the house settling.

My husband snores- This does not help. I can hear the neighbors snoring. It’s just not help.

My room has to be cool, and dark. No light or I don’t sleep. God help me if I’m over warm or sweating.

Last night there was a symphony of bullfrogs out in the meadow across the way making their beautiful music. Do you think that their lullaby could put me to sleep? No unfortunately I don’t know how long they kept me up. What began as something beautiful and reminiscent of my childhood shortly became irritating because I couldn’t sleep.

The rain used to be my natural sleeping pill. The harder it rained the harder I would sleep. Not anymore.

Along with all of this my brain won’t turn off. Part of me wonders if it’s stress and anxiety. Part of me wonders if it’s because I’m older. Part of me wonders if it’s because I run my own business and company and everything is on my shoulders. Part of me wonders if it’s genetic.

I come from a long line of non-– sleepers. So I come by being an insomniac naturally. We were all the night owls- And I used to be and wore that label with great pride. I can remember around 8 PM I would get my second wind, a burst of energy if you will, I could stay up until 1 AM or 2 AM with no problem. Now days if I’m not horizontal by 10 it’s all over for me.

But then sleep doesn’t always come.

I have tried everything- Exercise, reading, praying, warm milk, music, sex, hypnosis, meditation, and drugs.

I think my imagination is my worst enemy. In the good old days I could think about what I would do if I won a huge lottery. I could fantasize about walking into someone’s house and sitting down at the table and writing them a check- Or the places I would travel- Or the kind of house I would build-Or the charities I would help, etc… That in itself would lull me to sleep.

Again, not anymore. I know replace that ritual with worry and it’s so dumb. There’s so many things that I worry about but I have no control over that I can conceivably drive myself batshit.

The also weird thing that’s going on is that I am steadily losing weight- I’m doing it on purpose but I’m continuing to lose weight which is great- What’s weird about this is that I’m dreaming about things but I haven’t thought about in years that I’m realizing I satiated with the way I am at the time. For instance I’m almost down 50 pounds and I’m dreaming about stuff that happened to me when I was out this week many years ago.

Crazy times.

If any of you have insomnia what’s your home cure? How do you get your brain to turn off?

Wet or dry cappuccino? Come on.

This is truly been the day from hell.

Why is it that when I go into a coffee shop and order cappuccino I can’t just get a goddamn cappuccino.

Why is it that they have to complicate everything by saying to me:

“Would you like a wet cappuccino or dry cappuccino”

Every time it’s the same thing. I pause, till my head to the left, give them a weird look like what the hell and I repeat the same words: ( Actually I’m so over this question I usually hiss)

“Just make me a cappuccino please.”

Sometimes I’ve been known to growl”

It ain’t pretty.

When Women Become Bitches….


I stop what I’m doing and make homemade granola.

You think I kid — but no I am serious.

In my day job I am surrounded by thousands of women — 90% of who I deal with on a daily basis are women.  (I bet all you guys are licking your chops aren’t you.)

They are all different shapes, sizes, cultures, socioeconomic status, race, creed, faith, personalities,  and various walks of life — it’s truly for the most part a delightful diverse melting pot of individuals.

Most of the time I love my job.  Today is not one of those days.

The majority if the women I interact are delightful and I sincerely mean that. There are only a handful of women who I interact with who are not delightful and down right awful.

After spending almost all day attempting to resolve an issue that would make the majority happy I realized that there was no making everyone happy and I needed to come up with a resolution that would benefit the organization.

So I did.

And boy did he have howlers.

Instead of stressing myself to the point of a nervous breakdown I said :

“Screw this”

I shut everything down and made homemade granola from scratch that I can smell roasting in the oven.

Yep, that’s what I did.  When women become bitches you stop what you’re doing and make granola.