Sunday, September 22, 2013

signing in the dark


This weekend has been a harsh reminder of how different life can be without hearing sometimes.



It’s easy to sit here behind a computer screen and type as if my life is “normal” and as if real-life communication wasn’t the struggle it is.


Except, real life isn’t captioned.  Deafness doesn’t come with a built in Star Trek translator gadget.  And even nice people sometimes tire of the extra effort.


I’m not anti-social.  Except… I am.


In a large meeting with numerous concurrent conversations, I’m lost.

In a party with loads of noise and background music, I’m lost.

In a luncheon with words spoken around mouths full of food, I’m lost.

With a church speaker with a perfectly placed microphone, I’m lost.

In a car where the road and a conversation both require eyes, I’m lost.


So I excuse myself from them.  Smile and nod as if I understand.  Turn music on that I cannot hear to avoid awkward silences in the car.


And at dusk.  When everything slowly closes in.  Conversations around a campfire where flickers of light only illuminate every fifth word – not nearly enough to understand the riotous laughter that ensues.


Sometimes, often, it’s the little things I miss.

I will never have a conversation with my husband in the dark.

Not one that doesn’t require loads of guesswork, exaggerated pantomime, and laborious fingerspelling.


And in a moment that would have been hilarious if I hadn’t already been sad; I laid next to my husband in the dark last night and tried to figure out what he was trying to say.

My hand followed his as he motioned up the side of his head.

And the sad hilarity, is that he was simply trying to itch his ear.


It’s okay to laugh.  I am.  The poor man.


It comes at a bittersweet and difficult time.  We have reached a critical stage in this years-long “thing I can’t talk about”.


I can tell you that it has to do with my deafness.  And how others have responded in ways that were either kind, or intentionally cruel.  But the other part of that story is just how much you – on the other side of the computer screen, who don’t care if I’m deaf or hearing or skinny or purple – have been part of what has gotten us through this.


I’m not a victim.  I am capable.


But sometimes, I’d just like to hear my husband’s voice in the dark.



Monday, September 16, 2013

yelp in the kelp


and other ridiculous titles.


My parents graciously gifted Mr. Daddy a stay at the beach for a belated birthday trip, so we got our little sleepyhead on the road early and made for the coast.

beach 6


We made awesome time, and before we knew it, we were in the sand mugging for our blog friends.

beach 3


Seriously… y’all remember the “Mr. Daddy has crabs” epic convo, right?


I’d be remiss if I didn’t also show you the prequel shots that tell the REAL story here:





He looks thrilled, right?  Until I somehow flipped that drama switch and he suddenly went to this:



I cannot stop laughing.  At both of their faces.



The escapades continued with Kung Fu on the beach:


(which is really just a scenery change from the usual “Kung Fu in the Backyard, and Kung Fu in the Living Room… all of which end in, “OW!  Honey, be careful.  Wail.  But HE started it!”)


The stress was working its grip out of our shoulders and we wandered further and further down the shore.


Two playful dogs ran through the surf and circled around us.  They were at hyperspeed, so I was happily surprised when the big one trotted over to make friends.



I stuck my hand out and he leaned into it.  He wagged his whole body along my leg as I cooed at him.


I felt an insistent nudge on my shoulder, but the realization struck before I looked up to meet Mr. Daddy’s worried expression.


In what can only be God’s punishment for putting True Story Tuesday on hiatus for so long, the dog was enthusiastically marking his territory in warm wet streams all over my pants, down my bare ankles, and pooling into my shoe.


I yelped in surprise and jumped away… far, far too late.


beach 5



Those yellow streams down my leg… I was screaming on the inside.







See the group of people in the background?  The guy in the red shirt walked up… gesturing repeatedly without being able to say a word.  Finally, he choked out,




And we laughed and laughed and laughed.  And said it was okay (except, really not… because my shoe was sloshing with urine and ohmygoshthedogPEEDonme).


Then the entire family immediately leashed the dogs and took the walk of shame off the beach.

Except… we ran into the apologizer again later.  Awkward.



Since my wardrobe was now reduced by half, we went to check out our dwellings.  Awesomely industrial vibe – loved it.  Except… are earplugs on the nightstand normal hotel offerings?

beach 4


We realized quickly that the bed for Boog was not going to work out.



So he staked a spot out next to his favorite person.  Boog was happy with a remote control, and unbeknownst to me, my husband was instigating the “A Dog Peed On My Wife” comment explosion on Facebook.




He crashed within minutes.  Stoopid stinking cancer.

Beach 2


When he woke up, we dragged him to a kite shop and back to the sand.


I heart these boys.  A lot.


daddy and boog IMG_9145



And to make up for the earlier feet trauma… you’re welcome.  It’s like a saline rinse for your mental eyeballs, no? :)  Kid toes on the beach do me in, everytime.


feets IMG_9242


We laughed at half a dozen drivers getting towed out of the sand by speedy tow truck operators who obviously had lots of business.


Umm, yeah.  That’s the look he gave me when his city girl said,

“We’ll be okay with the four wheel drive, right?”




We wrapped the day up with Mr. Daddy snoring again long before we were ready to sleep (I wondered if the earplugs were for that?) and Boog watching Chicken Little.  I love that he seems to know when Dad isn’t feeling great. 




It was a whirlwind escape – made so much better by memories that Boog is old enough to keep.


kite IMG_9269


I hope to share more about what has really been going on in our lives soon.  But for now?  This was reality when we arrived home:




Yes, that’s our yard. 


And no, we don’t own a dog.


Or two.


But we apparently own a mole.




What is it with me and dogs these days?
Got any of your own canine tales to make me feel better?




Sunday, September 08, 2013

Parenting… gross


These boys.  Oh, these boys.

cousins IMG_6354


Boog and Bubba are pretty much the best cousins who get to live next door to each other in the history of ever.

Do not let the sweet smiles fool you.  They are hardcore.


cousins2 IMG_6361


And they are also the MESSIEST cousins who get to live next door to each other in the history of ever.

Remember?  Running through horse poop?



And remember when his excuse for the Nutella escapade was,

“Bubba told me to!”



Unfortunately, friends… today’s episode included another brown substance… and this one wasn’t for the faint of heart.


My kiddo stretched his curfew as long as he was able, and finally clambered up the back porch and unceremoniously dropped his flip-flops on the floor.


(Sidenote: flip-flops in the Northwest in September?… Y’all, it’s supposed to be NINETY degrees this week.  Holla!)


He walked on the heels of his feet to me and said those five words that strike fear (and instant gagging) in every mother’s heart:


“Momma, I stepped in poop”.


Every single other household activity was immediately suspended as Mr. Daddy and I looked at our son aghast and I mentally rewound to him dropping his flip-flops on the dining room floor.

"Honey!  You need to wash that off right now!  Bring me your shoes!”

“No Momma, it’s okay!  Bubba washed it off!”

“What?  He washed the poop off?”




As I made a beeline for the couldn’t-possibly-be-clean shoes, Boog dutifully followed me across the carpet.


“But Momma, it’s not on my shoes!”

“I know he cleaned them Butter, but I need to check.”

”Mom!  I stepped in it with my FEET!”


(puzzled Momma)


“Yeah!  I stepped in it with my bare feet!”



Those same feet that walked across half the house to tell me they’d just had relations with dog feces.

(and we don’t even HAVE a dog!)


Cue gagging and that superhuman reflex where mothers are able to lift a 60 pound just-stepped-in-dog-poop child and hold them three feet away from their body with just their fingernails.  Yeah.


As I ran the hot water, he helpfully told me the rest of it.



“Momma, it was really fresh.

I could tell because it was slippery.

And it’s okay, because Bubba washed it all off with the hose.”


Have you ever wondered what it might be like to be deaf and to have a nose that works REALLY GOOD?


cousins3 IMG_6353




Monday, September 02, 2013

Obamacare’s birth control benefit



In case you’re unprepared for the inevitable changes in your health care plan… I’d like to ensure that you still have full coverage when it comes to family planning.


Introducing:  Dr. Boog



He is super-duper excited to help you with your family planning needs and is really awesome at giving hugs when you need them.  Don’t worry, he’ll get you through this!


As part of the very first consultation, you’ll be given a detailed explanation of risks, as well as a bonus demonstration.


For your convenience, the explanation of risks contains an actual real-life scenario as described below:


Dr. Boog’s poor mother was laying beside him during evening prayers.  She had just finished thanking God for all the fun things that they’d done that day, when she felt a strange shaking of the bed.


She opened her eyes to see Dr. Boog with both hands plastered across his mouth, shaking in hysterical silent laughter.


Slightly annoyed that bedtime prayers were interrupted by something that didn’t appear urgent, she shot Dr. Boog a stern look and asked him what was so funny that it couldn’t wait until AMEN?


Dr. Boog’s hands flew off his mouth and he sucked in a breath before explaining the emergency with barely suppressed glee.


“Momma, you were praying…





I had an eye booger.


So I picked it off…







I flicked it in your mouth while you were praying.”






(cue Mommy frantically wiping off her tongue and gagging into the bathroom sink)







“Well, I THINK it was an eye booger.


I wiped out off right here from my eye.


See where, Mommy?  See?”






(Cue more frantic gargling with Clorox).


But why Boog?  WHY?




“I don’t know”






And if that doesn’t serve as the most effective birth control ever (because let’s face it, the kid is CUTE), Dr. Boog will kindly share Phase 2 (kids throwing up in public places), Phase 3 (kids using urine as a deadly weapon), and Phase 4 (flatulence dialogue in public).


If none of these are successful, an intervention with our resident specialist; Nutella Boy may be required.



And for exceptionally stubborn cases, Dr. Boog will refer you to an intensive program titled, “Shopping With Kids”.


These are all completely complimentary to you, regardless of what kind of coverage Obamacare affords you.  Consider it a gift from him to you, minus an eye booger.