RIP Wendy

Well, it’s taken me a week to get to the point where I feel ready to blog about it.

My dog Wendy was put to sleep last Friday, May 19th.

I adopted her from the Tri Valley Animal Shelter when she was three years old and she was a TOTAL MESS OF A DOG.

She was crate trained but nothing else.

She was so wild that trainers advised me not to leave my two young boys alone with her.

I didn’t know what I was getting in to. All I knew was that I’d lost my precious Mac a few weeks earlier in a deadly car accident on Highway 80 and I needed to bring a new dog into my life.

Of course, Wendy looked JUST LIKE MAC.

I spent $25 buying Wendy from the shelter and $5000 training her.

The trainers at Cooperhaus Kennels worked wonders with her, to the point that I could recall her with just the sound of my voice.

Over the years, she mellowed but she still maintained a little wild streak.

She never learned how to kiss until the very end, she always wanted to nibble.

Her favorite game was keep away, she never learned to fetch.

On a hot, sunny day in California, Wendy was laid to rest surrounded by her loved ones.

Birds chirped overhead and you could practically see the smile on Wendy’s face as she soaked in all the attention she was getting.

She was so enthralled with all the love bestowed on her, she refused to go to sleep after the vet gave her the sedative.

After waiting patiently for 10 minutes, the vet gave Wendy another shot to make her fall asleep.

Wendy got 10 extra minutes of love due to her stubbornness and her enjoyment of all the attention she was getting.

With two shots of sedative in her Wendy fell fast asleep.

And then the last shot was administered which stopped her fierce, beating heart.

Losing Wendy was difficult.

My dogs have always been an extension of the son I lost to cancer in 1998.

Their presence in my life symbolizes hope, unconditional love, and the bond between a parent and a “child.”

I have been blessed as Wendy’s caretaker, to have been given nearly 9 years with this AMAZING dog and I will hold onto all the precious memories I have of her.

I love you Wendy.

 

Happy Mother’s Day!

Mother’s Day is coming up and I am lucky enough to have two mothers.

Sherri, who gave birth to me, and Alice, who raised me.

For years while I was growing up, I would think of my birthmom on Mother’s Day and wonder if she was thinking of me as well.

And she was.

There are other important women in my life who I celebrate on Mother’s Day.

My Grandma is 94 years old.

I remember her cooking special meals for me when I visited her in Pennsylvania – pierogis, meatloaf, anise cookies, and piggies (stuffed cabbage).

Her recipes will always be my comfort food.

I also think of my sister, Lisa, on Mother’s Day.

Although she only has fur babies, she is the closest thing my boys have to a second mother and her role in our family is very important.

Also, there’s my Aunt Stacey, my cousin Jennifer, and my niece Bella, who I love and admire greatly. They are real warrior princesses and I’ll love them forever for accepting me into the family when times were rough.

Finally, I think of Barbara, my dear friend.

Her mother has passed away and so my heart goes out to her on Mother’s Day when I know she acutely feels the loss of her mom.

Of course, it’s impossible to think about Mother’s Day without thinking about the two young men who made me a mother in the first place – my sons Duncan and Gavin.

What incredible young men they are growing up to be and I find myself in awe of their spirit and zest for life.

They are, by far, the best things to ever happen to me and I thank the universe on a daily basis for allowing me to be their mother.

So on this Mother’s Day, I’m sending out my love to all the mother’s out there and all their beautiful children.

That includes YOU!

Mac

Some of you know the story of Mac, the incredible white German shepherd my ex-husband rescued for me when we lost our oldest son to cancer.

That dog brought me back to life and saved me when I was at my lowest, deepest point of suffering.

Mac died when he fell out my truck window onto Highway 80 when the boys and I were coming home from a camping trip.

I remember watching him fall in my rearview mirror and also seeing my 60 pound, 7 year old son desperately trying to hold on to him.

I thought that perhaps my son was falling out the window too.

You can’t imagine the horror I experienced.

My son stayed safely in the car but sadly, Mac was killed while getting off the freeway (10 years to the day after my oldest son died).

We’d just finished up a LOVELY vacation at the Yuba River with my Uncle Donald, Aunt Stacey, and my cousins Jennifer, Travis, Bella, Matt, and Nick.

It was amazing.

Today, I was reminded that when it was my turn to swing on the rope and fall 8 feet into the water, I was chicken.

I didn’t want to jump.

And Mac stood by my side and waited with me while I worked up the courage. . .

And JUMPED!

And only after I jumped did he follow suit and jump in with me.

He was an amazing dog.

And I feel lucky that I somehow managed to take this picture of him THE VERY MORNING OF THE DAY HE DIED.

The last picture I ever took of him.

And I’d like to think that in the afterlife, he is playing in the water, in the sun, surrounded by family.

I love you Mac.  You are not forgotten!

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Toilets and Love

My sister tagged me in a Facebook post calling me “the eternal love optimist.”

Along with that sentiment came her “two cents” on the topic.

diarrheaLove is the best feeling.

But finding a toilet when you have diarrhea is better.

Hmmmm.

Perhaps in the moment.

I remember one time my ex-husband had the trots and we were LITERALLY A BLOCK from our house when he made me pull over so he could use the bathroom at McDonalds.

A BLOCK!

I’m sure at that time I held little value for him where as the toilet was a thing of beauty.

If I remember correctly, I think I was laughing a little bit at his plight.

Or at least trying not to laugh and failing miserably.

Let’s face it, the superiority of love over toilets doesn’t need to be proven.

It’s just a fact.

Toilets can’t love you back.

They can’t keep you warm in bed.

And they can’t hug you when you’re feeling down.

They certainly can’t give you an orgasm.

At best they can make you feel all tingly inside, but that’s just a temporary side effect of poor blood circulation.

The point to my sister’s post (and I think this is key to the difference between us) is that I am an optimist and expect love to fall in my lap at some point in the future whereas my sister is a pessimist and has found other ways to keep herself happy.

I suppose when you’re a mobile nurse driving from home to home in the Nevada mountains, finding a toilet could feel similar to falling in love.

It could.

But it’s not.

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Big news!

michelle and tejasBig news!

One of my single friends is now “coupled up.”

I used the term “coupled up” loosely because they are just starting out and no official labels have been used (like girlfriend or boyfriend).

In fact, they call their relationship a “non-relationship.”

Well, I call BULLSHIT but whatever makes them happy I can agree with.

In any case, I met the significant other last night and I have to say SHE IS MAGICAL.

In my mind I had an idea of what was perfect for my friend and she’s all that and a bag of chips.

Magical, I tell you.

Part of me is disappointed to be left behind.

My friend was my “non-date date” for the longest time at parties and get-togethers.

He was my companion when I was lonely and sitting at home with no dates on the horizon.

But seeing how happy he is, it is IMPOSSIBLE to not be THRILLED for him, even if that THRILL is a little bittersweet.

Congrats you two lovebirds.

So happy you are enjoying each other!

Reunited!

When I was 22 years old, I met my birthmother.

I called her on the phone and for the first time she answered.

She had the most beautiful voice I’d ever heard and I knew someone with a voice that kind would NEVER be mean to me.

So I told her who I was and asked if now was a good time to talk.

The rest is history.

In 17 months, I will have known my birthfamily LONGER than I haven’t known them.

I find this a strangely reassuring milestone.

It’s as if I went away for a little while, or took a long vacation, only to return.

I have three families now – mine, my birthmother’s and my birthfather’s.

Try juggling holiday commitments when you’ve got three families.

[ASIDE: If I was married, it would be EVEN HARDER].

Two weeks ago, I made the trek to Santa Rosa to visit my birthfamily and I had a really great time.

My birthmom and I got to hang out and chat before the rest of the family showed up.

I talked to my sister, who was so nice I can’t help but think there’s potential for a real relationship to develop.

We shared a meal before I drove for three grueling hours (it normally only takes two) during a deluge where even my wipers on hyper speed couldn’t keep up with the rain.

And just cuz I love them BUCKETS, I’m posting a pic we took that day. . . in all our clever goofiness.

We’re in DISGUISE!

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Bad at Romance

michelle1First of all, I have to put up a disclaimer that says my friend Michelle would strongly disagree with what I’m about to write.

But she always sees me in a positive light.

Still, take everything I say with a grain of salt.

What I want to say is that I am bad at romance.

Yes folks, I suck at it.

I’m like a pimple faced 13 year old boy when it comes to romance.

I’ve actually said to boyfriends, “wanna knock out a piece?” and “ready to clean the pipes?”

I can’t help myself.

I just happen to be coarse when it comes to lovemaking.

I’m not sure how to ask for it so I take a humorous approach.

And that’s not all I’m bad at.

I can’t seem to wrap my head around the mushy stuff – the romantic walks, holding hands, and intimate dinners.

My idea of romance is cooking my boyfriend a steak then “knocking out a piece” on the living room floor.  If I’m feeling really decadent, we’ll make it to the bedroom.

Yes, romance for me almost always involves sex.

Perhaps that’s why when you remove it from the equation (like with the abstinent guys I have dated) I am destined to fail.

I’ve lost my ability to communicate affection.

AND it’s frustrating.

But truthfully, do men really want to be romanced?

Isn’t a steak and a blow job enough to keep them happy?

Why improve on perfection, no?

I ASPIRE to be a better lover but I’m bad at COMMUNICATING it.

Maybe, and this is a BIG MAYBE, maybe it’s just been too long since I’ve been in love.

Perhaps I’ll fall in love and the rest will take care of itself.

That would be grand.

THE INNER SANCTUM

barbara1I “inherited” my friendship with Barbara from my (now defunct) friendship with Danielle.

We met at a Curvy Girl anniversary party.

I remember Barbara was wearing a skull and crossbones corset that looked AMAZING.

barbara-corsetWe both got henna tattoos and waved our arms in the air like we don’t care, just drying our henna tattoos.

When my friendship with Danielle broke down, I assumed that Barbara would go away too.

But she didn’t.

She stayed.

Barbara and I look like sisters. Even MY OWN FATHER mistakes Barbara for me.

She may be a decade younger than me, but in sense and sensibility, she is a decade more advanced than I.

I aspire to be more like her.

Barbara is also a mystic.

She has the awesome power to observe relationships and predict their outcome based on her SUPERIOR POWERS OF ANALYSIS.

And she has no room for flakes.

I introduced her to my friend Brandon who is a pretty cool black man living in the City.

When he flaked on calling her back for a week, Barbara wrote him off.

DESPITE the fact that she had liked him.

Because Barbara is strong like that.

I am, of course, weak.

So I need someone like Barbara in my life to remind me that when flakiness happens to me, it’s a result of mediocre interest, not busy schedules.

 

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That is why, I’m proud to announce that Barbara has now been accepted into THE INNER SANCTUM.

And what is THE INNER SANCTUM, you wonder?

It’s a small yet elite group of women who enrich my life such that I am devoted to their own happiness and well being.

THE INNER SANCTUM has the power to veto relationships in my life.

Now, men who want to date me need the approval of:

  • My sister Lisa
  • My friend Michelle
  • My cousin Jennifer
  • My friend Barbara

I heart THE INNER SANCTUM. Those women always see the best in me and insist that I find a man who sees the same.

Needless to say, we’re still working on that.

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Like, love, hate. . .

michelleThings I LIKE:

  1. The smell of car exhaust
  2. Men named Charlie or Kevin or David
  3. Australian accents
  4. Cold plunges
  5. Beards
  6. Freshly made beds
  7. Vacation sex
  8. Weddings
  9. Big dogs
  10. Back scratches

Things I LOVE:

  1. Spooning
  2. Forking
  3. Costumes every day!
  4. Long hugs
  5. Smutty novels
  6. Makeup
  7. Lingerie
  8. Facebook
  9. Tattoos
  10. The Giants

Things I HATE:

  1. Aggressive drivers
  2. The Dodgers
  3. Carnations
  4. Donald Trump’s Campaign for President
  5. People who always say 10 bad things before they’ll say one good thing
  6. Horror movies
  7. Condoms
  8. Bad kissers
  9. Selfish lovers
  10. Clothing stores for skinny girls

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One Lucky Baby

IT’S MY BIRTHDAY!

I was born first to Paul and Sherri, two teenagers living in Sonoma. They accidentally conceived me in a treehouse during their eighth grade year in school.

Sherri was sent to live with her aunt and uncle in San Jose to await my birth.

I was born on November 2nd. I was a forceps baby and I came out with a banged up, scratched up head (see pic below) but no worse for wear.

FullSizeRender FullSizeRender(1)Alice and “Mario”, my parents, got the word that I’d been born and I’d be joining my 5 month old sister Lisa. My dad got to the hospital and looked at his itty bitty newborn daughter and declared that I looked like a frog on account of my legs stuck out sideways.

Screen Shot 2015-10-26 at 4.19.46 PMI will forever be grateful to Sherri and Paul for putting me up for adoption. I was lucky enough to meet them when I was 22 and they have been a part of my life ever since.

IMG_7821Nothing pleases me more than explaining to people how lucky I am to have two sets of parents who love and adore me.

I am one lucky baby.

Happy Birthday to me!