Thursday, May 19, 2011

MOB #3

Within the last 9 months, my daughter and two nieces whom I adore, got married. My daughter was bride #1, which made me MOB #1 in my family of four sisters. MOB #2 was my younger sister in Dallas/Fort Worth. MOB #3 is my older sister who lives in Minneapolis. It has been an exciting year for marriages in my family.

This past weekend I went to Minneapolis to check out my sister's MOB outfit for her daughter's July weekend. She had sent me a photo as well as described it to me. It sounded, well, ummm, stately?

When I saw the melon color pearl accented suit I was impressed. It would be an appropriate suit to wear to a 50th wedding anniversary or a retirement party. But for a hip, young, single, vibrant MOB? Nope. Not enough bling!! The suit would be better if my sister was the Grandmother of the bride, not the actual MOB!

But I held my tongue. Who am I to say what people should wear? I told my sister, "That's a lovely suit." But inside I was thinking... too conservative. Too boring. Too matronly!

She asked me to go to the mall the next day to find MOB shoes. Gulp. To go with that suit?? May as well get white wedged nurses's shoes to complete that look! But I was here to support my sister's choice. So off we go to the mall.

Right away I found a pair of sexy, side cut out, off white almost pearlish color high spiky heels with a puff on the bridge of the shoe. My sister liked them but thought the heel was too high. I found another pair with a lower, thicker heel but still pretty rad. She didn't like them.

She grabbed a pair of basic strappy sandals. I say "You could wear those to work." She replied, "Yah I know! That's great."

I should interject that my sister has one daughter. ONE. She will be MOB only once. And I will also mention that while my sister was married twice, she never had a blow out in your face wedding and reception. The first wedding was very small with only immediate family in attendance. The second wedding was a destination wedding in Hawaii with only she and her husband in attendance.

So this was it. This was the one wedding where she could go all out! Show what she has. She is a perfect size 6, or a 4 on her skinny days. She works out, she is fit. Not like me who believes work outs consist of walking to the bathroom during commercials. She has yogurt for breakfast. C'mon. Who has yogurt for breakfast. She threw out all the chips in her house so she wouldn't be tempted. If I was her neighbor, I'd be out in the middle of the night combing through her garbage looking for those bags of chips!

Ya get the picture, she is gorgeous, thin, single, MOB and she wants to wear a suit with sandals. For her one daughter's wedding.

What WHAT is wrong with this picture. Just about everything. Again, I bite my tongue.

I finally talk her into trying on the sexy stilletoes. They are adorable. The sales clerk who was about 10 years younger than us says, "Wow. Those look great on you." Slam dunk. My sister walks around in them and says, "Ya know, I kinda like these!!" Well, DUH!! She then tries on the other pair I picked out and she exclaims, "I like these too!" So buy them both! Wear the sexy ones for the pictures and dance the night away in the lower heels. No brainer here!

She agrees and buys both pairs. As we were leaving the shoe department at Von Maur's my sister looks at a beautiful, trendy, youthful melon color dress on a manican. It had a deep v-neck with ruffles around the neckline. Skin tight. I knew instantly that she liked it. I suggest "Why don't we try that on?" She hesitates and says "I already have a suit." Yes yes you do...I push harder. "We're going upstairs to try this dress on NOW!"

My sister mutters something anal about it's not procedure to buy the shoes before you buy the dress. Details.....

We enter the evening wear section on floor 2. OH NO. There is not the magic gown in her size. She says, "Oh well, not to be...." NO NO NO. I grab a salesclerk and ask her if she would go down and get the dress off the manican as that looked like an extra small perfect for my sister size. Why is it that outfits on manicans are always size zero?? Who really is that skinny? The salesclerk was somewhat dense as she looked straight at us and says "We don't do that. We don't remove attire from manicans." WHAT?? Ummmm, yes you DO. Or at least you will today.

We stood there and held our ground. Figuring we were serious about trying on this dress, Miss Dense asks her supervisor who immediately says, "Why yes, you certainly can try that dress on. We'll go and get it for you." Miss Dense was not a happy salesclerk by now.

Great! I'm excited. Can't wait to see this formal dress on my sister.

Off my sister goes to the waiting room with Miss Dense holding the dress behind her. Miss Dense comes over to me a few minutes later and says, "Your sister has the dress on. She wants you to see her. Oh, and it looks terrific on her!"

I run to the waiting area yelling her name!! This waiting room is packed! Must be lots of weddings coming as there were ladies our age everywhere with formal dresses on. I felt like the ugly step sister, very underdressed with my jeans and John Deere sweatshirt on.

And then my sister appeared. She was radiant. Not only was she wearing a sexy modern dress but she was also wearing a huge smile.

She said "I feel special."

BINGBING> That's the feeling every MOB should have. The feeling of being special. MOBs are special. Next to the bride, they are the most important woman at a wedding.

She put on the sexy shoes and people stared. I wanted to put a crown on her and declare her "Queen for the Day," her daughter being the princess. Other woman were saying she looked beautiful. That the dress fit her like a tee. That she looked trendy. She looked youthful. She looked like a MOB! I asked other women "Does this look like a MOB dress? All the answers were a resounding YES!

Yet she lingered. "What about the suit?"

I took a deep breath and said, "No one will remember you as MOB wearing a melon color conservative suit that has pearl accents on the collar. But people WILL remember you wearing THIS dress."

"This dress is way outside my comfort zone." I nod.

"Ok, I'll return the suit." I secretly am screaming YES and doing a happy dance inside my head.

She had to have a few minor things altered and the seamstress pinned up the hem. My sister is committed now. After alterations there is no "return it."

I simply cannot wait to see my beautiful sister walk down the aisle on the arms of an handsome usher on her daughter's wedding. She not only will be "queen for the day" but she will make all of her guests feel like they have witnessed something special.

My job here is done.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Pop goes the shaver!

A fashionista knows it’s spring when she has to shave her legs. Winter legs can be hidden beneath boots, pants, tights. But in the spring, out comes the shorts, skirts and capris which means the legs must be hairless. Today was that day. Yesterday I was wearing a winter hat and today I am sweating with all the windows in my house wide open and fans running. Aaaah, life in the Midwest. But with the heat comes the bare legs. Around the house, who really cares if your legs are hairy or not. No one. And I’m pretty sure no one would care if you ever shaved your legs again. But women seem to care. I am such a woman. I have a Lady Sunbeam electric shaver. I have had this shaver since, gulp, college. Yup, that old. It has long lost its brand name on the shaver and the blades I’m sure are very dull. But it has served me well.. Until today. It is an electric shaver which means I have to plug the cord into an outlet. Which is the easy part. What happens next is a challenge. The cord is very frayed from use. But if you hold the cord JUST RIGHT, the shaver will do its duty. It’s more difficult to hold the cord in this special way when you have to reach around and do the back of your legs. But it is possible and I’ve done that for too many years than I want to admit. Until today. I get out Miss Lady Sunbeam, plug it in and jiggle the cord. Nothing. Hmmmm. I jiggle again. Again, nada. One more for the gipper and WALA I have humming. But it is short lived. As soon as I move the shaver, the humming stops. Dead. I do some more jiggling of the cord and see that there is a certain way that if I hold it I can get a spark to connect the obvious wires inside. Now my mind is thinking… what to do what to do what to do. I am married to an engineer!! He MUST have electrical tape!! I rush downstairs, with my hairy legs, and ask my man for his secret weapon. No, not duct tape, but instead electrical tape. He asks me what color I wanted. There are color choices in electrical tape? Why?? I say it doesn’t matter and he hands me green. I was expecting standard black but green will suffice. Back up to my bathroom. Plug the cord back in and try to hold the cord in the precise way so that it hums and I can tape it. Easier said than done. I then put the shaver in my lap and try taping and holding the cord attached to the shaver with both hands while it is humming. I see smoke. A dark dirty smelly smoke coming from my lap. Ohhhhh this can’t be good! Why is it smoking? Doesn’t electrical tape hold the parts together so it DOESN’T smoke? I quickly turn off the shaver. I put down the Miss Lady Sunbeam with the frayed cord now glowing with neon green tape and stare at it. Maybe it just needs to cool down a few seconds. 1, 2, 3… Grabbing the shaver at the count of 20 I turn it on and hope for the best. I hear humming!! Alright!! Life is good! I begin to shave my right leg. All is going well. My hairy leg is becoming smooth and hairless. Done with leg #1. Switch to the left leg. Things are going along smoothly when all of a sudden I hear a POP noise. Like a gun shot. I dropped the shaver, which is dead... again. I don’t want to touch it. What if I blew a fuse? Do I unplug the stupid thing? Or wait until I hear my husband’s footsteps coming into my bathroom demanding to know what happened. I wait. I don’t see smoke. I don’t see my husband. I don’t see fire. Just like the fireman tells you NOT to do in first grade, I pull the cord from the middle of the cord to unleash it from the outlet. I try turning on the light. Light works. Didn’t blow a fuse. Whew. Sadly I lay the deceased Miss Lady Sunbeam on my counter. But my left leg is still not hair free. It looks like a zebra. With some dark line stripes, some gone. This is definitely unacceptable. Frantically searching for a razor that I knew I saw in my vanity drawer 5 or 6 years ago, I found what I was looking for. A old fashion Bic hand held razor. Still in its wrapper. I haven’t shaved with a blade since, well, let’s just say a long long time. Do you use water first? Get the leg wet? That doesn’t seem right. Maybe use shaving cream? My husband has a beard, thus no shaving cream in the house. I remember seeing tv commercials with the lovely lady in the tub with her leg on the rim of the tub shaving. But who has time for a tub bath? That seemed ridiculous and a waste of my valuable time. May as well just shave el’naturale. And I did. I also knicked my leg in several spots. And am now walking around with daps of toilet paper stuck to my leg where I tried to stop the bleeding. I always put lotion on my legs after my Miss Lady Sunbeam shave so that my legs get remoisturized from the trama of being shaved. So I did that. Used some vanilla scented lotion. OUUCH!! Do NOT do this. Especially if you have fresh cuts in your legs. This burns like a son of a gun. I repeat, do not do this! I grabbed a towel, ran it under the faucet and soothed my newly shaved yet burning legs. But my legs are now hairless and sexy. I am ready to show off my skin to the rest of the world. Well, first I need to let the scabs form on the cuts and the red blochy burn marks from the lotion disappear. But good news. The weather is going to break tonight with a storm and the high is only 55 tomorrow. That’s slacks weather!! I’m good to go.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

TO PARK OR NOT TO PARK, That is the question!

Somewhere in the world of common sense is the unwritten rule "If it snows and you spend hours plowing and shoveling the snow away from your front curb, you have the right to park there."

I think that is a very simple rule. You shovel, you park. You don't shovel, you don't get to park. What could be more logical?

We have new neighbors kitty korner across the street. I know they are new neighbors because our streets were full of SUVs last Saturday afternoon. They must have been having a "come and see our new house and drive the biggest vehicle you own" pizza party. And all these SUVs were parked on our street. Let me rephrase that, they were all parked in front of MY house. Yup, in the parking space that my husband spent hours blowing snow to get a parking spot so I had an easy in, easy out to park my car on the street.

I was not a happy camper when I came home from shopping on Saturday only to find NO parking in front of my house. Whattodowhattodo?

I decided to gun my little champagne Corolla over a snow drift and park as close as I can to one of the SUVs to prove my point. Of course my little dinky toyota looked like a toy car next to a huge white SUV.

All day these SUVs stayed in my front parking spot. I watched multiple pizza cars stop and deliver pizzas throughout the afternoon. How many pizzas can these people eat??

Finally the party broke up and people came running out to get into their SUVs and go wherever. I noticed the average age of these people was early 20's. Did their mothers NOT teach them fundamental manners?

But I let the issue go. Ok, so they had a moving in party. Fine. I can understand that. It was just a one time thing. I can live with that.

Now we all know we had the mother of all snow storms Tuesday and Wed. My husband spent 3+ hours blowing snow out of the street into our yard so that I would have my parking spot back on the street. All the other neighbors were also blowing and shoveling their little private area in front of their house for their cars that park on the street.

I came home today for lunch from my job and I see TWO SUVs parked in front of my house. You have GOT to be kidding me! Did these young new IDIOT neighbors not see that a parking spot was in front of MY house for MY car? Did they think MY husband plowed and shoveled for 3 hours for THEIR vehicles?

Fumes are coming out of my ears and I'm breathing fire. How RUDE! How INCONSIDERATE! If you want a parking spot, then SHOVEL!

My mail lady is dropping off my mail and I am outside retrieving my mail when I see the new neighbor husband coming to his SUV. GREAT. I say "Excuse me!! But my husband spent 3 hours blowing snow......."

He said, "I will move my car. My mother's car was in my driveway."

Don't care. It could be the President's car. If you don't shovel a spot, you don't get to park.

I went back to work after lunch still fuming.

Finally it's 5:00 and I'm driving home. I round the corner of our street in my car and there..... in front of my house.... is a SUV. Not just ANY SUV, but the same white SUV that I just asked to be moved. Arrrrghhh.

My body is boiling. I'm so angry. Can people really be that STUPID? That un-neighborly?

I take a deep breath and I walk over to the new neighbors. KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK.

Some child answers. "Are your mom and dad at home?" The child points inside.

I go in and meet the "Mrs." Who is very nice. Young.

Introductions were made and I welcomed "Stacy" to the neighborhood. HOWEVER, I let her know about the "unwritten" rule pointing to her SUV glaringly sitting in the front of my house in my newly shoveled parking spot. "Is this your vehicle?" I asked with a smile. C'mon, I was being nice.... kinda.

"Have you noticed that there were shoveled spots in front of some of the houses?" I ask innocently. "Stacy" nodded. "Yeah," I continued, "those spots were shoveled out by the person who lives there for THEIR car." DUH!!

And then I layed it on thick..."I broke my feet a couple years ago and so my husband blows out a big area for me so that I don't ever have to worry about getting stuck and walking home or having to shovel myself."

Ok, so that was overkill. But desperate times require desperate measures.

"Stacy" says "But we have no where to park our car!" WHAT?? Do you NOT own a shovel? Do you NOT see the snow drift in the front of YOUR house? And it's a corner lot, so I say "Well, you could park over there," pointing to their side yard.

"No we can't. There are cars parked there." Well DUH! Of course there are cars parked there. But if YOU shoveled YOUR drifts, YOU would have a place to park YOUR SUVS!

I am now shaking my head in my mind frustrated thinking my job here is done. I have come over as a friendly neighbor basically saying "STAY OUT OF MY PARKING SPOT."

We shall see. I did notice after supper tonight, the white SUV is gone from in front of my house. Maybe "Stacy" did get the message... If not, my new neighbors may find a new shiny metal shovel on their front step with a big bow on it with a sweet note saying "Thought you might need this."

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Take Down

Friday was the official day to take down the Christmas tree. I even had it on my work calendar. And you know if something is written on a work Outlook calendar, well, it better get done.

I have a skinny one piece artificial Christmas tree. It's easy for me to handle. The box I store it in is the original box and I can easily slide the cardboard box down the stairs from where it is stored 10 months out of the year.

Since the tree is skinny and doesn't have many branches, I used the garlands from my daughter's wedding 5 years ago to fill in the open areas to make the tree look thicker. The garlands were purple and white so this year away with the traditional colors of red and white, and instead my tree was bright with lavendar, purple and twinkle lights.

But Friday the tree had to come down. No more procrastination. I started to take down the 12 days of Christmas ornaments and my cat decided the ornaments were fun new toys. I saw the bulb "Three french hens" go under the buffet and "Five golden rings" went flying under the t.v. Obviously my cat was not going to be my little helper.

Off come the garlands, the rest of the 12 days of Christmas ornaments and the tree topper. Everything that was once on the tree is now on the floor in a pile, or under the buffet, or under the tv or now even under the couch.

The challenge now is how to get that black metal piece that anchors the tree and allows the tree to stand. I remember having to shove the tree trunk into that sucker when I put the tree up.

I stood on the black metal piece and tried to lift the tree off. Didn't even budge. I thought I was holding the tree trunk too high so I bent over and tried to lift the tree off again. Nothing. What the ...

So I topple the tree over to its side and try to pull off the black metal piece. The cat is now attacking the tree because the tree is on top of the ornaments and my cat is thinking the tree wants HER ornaments. I am yanking with all of my might to pull off the black metal anchor. Seriously, there is absolutely no movement.

Did I have to SCREW that black metal piece ON? I don't remember doing that but I try. I start to spin the square black metal piece and it starts to move. HALLELUJAH! So I keep spinning it and pulling at the same time. This goes on for several minutes. By now my cat is hissing at the tree and has 10 of the 12 ornaments scattered around my living room. The garlands are now spread every which way and I see glitter everywhere.

I'm now getting pissed. This shouldn't be that difficult!! If I put the base ON the tree, I should be able to take the base OFF the tree. The spinning is now useless. I have about 2 inches of pipe showing from the tree to the black metal base and it's stuck. One last effort and with all my strength and a couple of choice words, I pull. C R A C K. More choice words and a big OH SH&T.

Now the base is at my feet free of the tree. I survey the damage to the tree and yup, there is a lovely crack up the fake wood trunk. SH&T. What to do what to do.

The only thing TO do is put the tree in the big skinny cardboard box and tape it shut. Outta sight, outta mind. Get a big garbage bage and gather all the 12 days of Christmas ornaments (still looking for 10 drummers drumming), and shove the garlands into the garbage bag.

Haul the tree box up the stairs while dragging the big garbage bag in my other hand and throw everything in the spare bedroom which houses the storage closet aka attic. Get down on my hands and knees to open the mini door to the attic, wave my hand around in the dark attic until I find the cord for the light and then shove everything in the attic. But then I see something black go flying in. My cat has now joined me in the attic which is a big NO NO cause once she gets in the attic, she has all these new things to play with and I'll never get her to come out. The attic is not insulated and I'm cold as I gently call her name to get the cat to come OUT of the DAMN attic! "Here kitty, c'mon Stella...mommy's cold..."

I try to grab her but she's fast. FINE. Stay in the damn attic. See if I care. I back out of the attic on my hands and knees and by now my knees are starting to hurt. There is no carpet in the attic and these knees are not attached to a 21 year old's body.

I crawl out and sit on the bedroom floor looking at the black void in the attic which is now stuffed with my Christmas decorations and ... my cat. And I can feel the cold air from the attic.

Stupid stupid cat. OH WAIT!! BRILLIANCE came upon me.

I run down the stairs and get the kitty treats. Shake the bottle and say "Here kitty. Come and get a treat." My cat hears the rattle of her treats, and like a flash of lightning the cat is streaking towards me and I throw the kitty treat into the kitchen as I run up the stairs, into the bedroom, on my hands and knees and lock the door to the attic.

Whew. The tree is safely tucked away. The cat is happy eating her tuna treat.

And ya know, as far as the crack in the tree, doesn't that just make the fake tree look more real? Yup, that works for me.

Monday, January 3, 2011


It takes time to scrape ice off your car's windshield. And who has this extra two minutes in the morning on a cold winter's day. Not me. I should mention that my car has never seen the inside of a garage. I park it in the front of my house outside.

So how does one scrape the ice off a windshield? You get in the car, put the defrost on full blast bend down and lean forward as much as you can in the driver's seat and tilt your head so you can look through the very bottom of the windshield at that 1/8 inch sliver of clear.

This is how lazy people drive in the midwest on a cold winter's day. And truth be told, I am one of those people.

Yesterday was cold. And of course I was running late in the morning because it's so hard to get out of a warm bed in the middle of the winter. Thus I had no time to scrape windows of my car. So I turned on the defrost, looked through the sliver and off I drove. But I'm having a very difficult time seeing through the sliver. I turn on the windshield wipers. Nothing.

Then I do the unthinkable. I pull back on the blinker light control and spray some water on the windshield while I'm driving. You would think I would know better! I have a literature degree from a 4 year college for heaven's sake!!

This brilliant move has now resulted in ANOTHER layer of ice on my already iced over windshield. I am blind. I cannot see whatsoever.

Remembering seeing a green parked car along the route before I became stupid, I knew I had to drive a little further to clear the parked car. And then I pulled over. Needless to say, I cannot see the curb but realized soon enough where it was once I hit it.

Now I have to physically get OUT of the car, find the scraper which I threw in the backseat last week and do what I should have done 5 minutes ago and start hacking away at the ice on my windshield.

I have a nice little circle going right in the middle of the driver's side of the windshield. It's FREEZING outside so I figure that was good enough.

Get back in the car, roll down the driver's window because that window is also frozen glossy from ice and I didn't scrape it, and merge into traffic. Roll the window back up and stare through my little circle. But I am leaning so far forward to see out that my body has begun to fog up the windshield.

You have GOT to be kidding!! I rub the inside of the windshield with my gloved hand. There, I can sorta see again. Kinda.

I've gone about 2 blocks now and I figure it's warm enough to try again with the jet spray of water. I shoot. I do not score.

I'm blind. AGAIN. I cannot see a thing. My little hole is closed now with ice as is my sliver below. The wipers are worthless. Stinking unbelievable.

Once again I have to pull my car over and again find the scraper and again go out in the cold and again scrape the windshield. This time I put some muscle behind it. The whole driver's side of the windshield is clear. Screw the other windows.

I get back in the car and take the winter scarf around my neck and put it up to my mouth. I do not want to fog the window from the inside.

She's off again. I resist the urge to jet spray the window with water. Call me dumb but I learned my lesson. I won't be doing that a third time.

Slowly but surely my car's windshield begins to defrost and I can lower the scarf from my mouth and sit back in the driver's seat.

I tell my husband about my adventure later that night at the dinner table and he calmly asks me "Why didn't you start the car with the remote starter you have on your keychain before you went outside this morning and let it warm up?"

Ohhhhh yeahhhhh rightttttt. But again, that would take 2 minutes and who has that time in the morning???

Note to self: Change the alarm clock setting by two minutes. But just for the winter months.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Blue Ridge Mts

It is Christmas in the midwest. Which means clearly, cold weather and snow. Lots and lots of white. And Iowa did not disappoint. We have had our share of snow...every day...every where.

My husband and I decide to head NE for the holiday. My daughter and her husband live in Harrisburg, PA and it was there where we went to celebrate Christmas.

Harrisburg is an interesting city. Very spread out. And low risers. Not a high rise in the city. Plus it has a lovely setting with the river and moutains in the background.

But the best thing about Harrisburg? NO SNOW. There was green grass in Harrisburg. In December. At Christmas. It was almost unnatural!

Oh it was chilly outside and there was a touch of winter in the air. One day it did snow. It looked like lint coming down from the sky. My son in law says "Wait....wait for it.. THERE! Did you see that ONE flake!!"

Because mountains are not a natural sight in IA, I wanted to drive through the Blue Ridge Mountains of Harrisburg. My daughter is behind the wheel and I am gawking at the beautiful scenery. She had never driven up the mountain passes either. We were in for a mother/daughter adventure.

She took an exit called "Mountain Road." That seemed appropriate. And up the mountain we went. It reminded me of Road to Hana in Maui. Twisting, turning, up up with more twists. At one point I calmly asked "Are we at the top yet?" My daughter replied, "No, we are only at tree level." Ohhh that means there are more twists and turns coming...

I should mention there are not alot of houses on Mountain Road. There were some horse farms and the horses did glance our way when we drove passed thinking "Look at those fools driving up this mountain. Obviously not locals." We met a few cars along the route that were driving DOWN the mountain. But where did these people come from??

It is now too late to turn around and go back down the mountain. We are nearly there - to the peak. I was hoping for a "scenic view" rest stop. But no. Not on this mountain. Only a winding, twisting road back down. I could actually see that we were going AROUND this mountain!

Time was clicking by and I was beginning to wonder if we would get down this mountain while it was still daylight. Apparently the locals knew to get DOWN while the sun was UP.

My daughter's car had a GPS and I kept looking at it. When would we be driving STRAIGHT?? I have also come to the conclusion that it is easier to be the driver in a car that is mountain climbing than a passenger. The driver can control the turns. The passenger just holds on and prays.

Finally, we are back on level ground. Our ears are done popping. I was looking for the vendor stand that sold "I survived the Blue Ridge Mountain Road" tshirts. Nothing. We ended up in a little town called Elizabethville. It was a town of 3 houses and a bar. Again, nothing worthy to stop at and brag that we just drove through the mountain pass.

I looked at the GPS hoping there was another way BACK to Harrisburg that didn't involve a mountain road. My daughter knew exactly what I was thinking as she declared "We are NOT going on that road again. We WILL find another route." I could have kissed her. But she was busy finding a new route on her TomTom.

We did find a 4 lane highway outside of Elizabethville which would eventually get us back to Harrisburg. It was along the river. Lovely river. Smooth river. All on one level river. Not a mountain river.

Harrisburg is a scenic city complete with a mountain range and a wide river. Next time I'm there I plan on going shopping and leaving the scenery in the background.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Nose job

20 days ago and counting I broke my nose. People fracture bones every day. Truth be told, I have had my share of broken bones. Feet, arm, wrists, toes. I can now add nose to the growing list.

It really wasn't even a major fall that made my nose break. Tripping over a computer cord is what did the trick. But I remember very clearly how my nose slammed against the wood floor in my dining room. My husband jokes and says "Look at this floor where Joly fell. Not a scratch on it!!" Some have asked me why I didn't catch myself with my arms. I don't know. Some have asked if I was running. I don't know. The ER Doctor asked if I blacked out. I don't know. All I know is that I fell after my left foot became entangled in a cord connecting my laptop to a printer. And I landed on my nose.

I was Humpty Dumpty and I had a great fall.

Right away I knew that this fall was exceptional. Warm red blood was gushing from the top of my nose and from the inside of my nose. Freaking out because I couldn't get the blood to stop oozing out of me, I ran to find my husband while holding toilet paper over my nose and breathing heavily through my mouth.

It was 2:00 on a Saturday and Pat was taking his usual weekend nap. Shaking him with a bloody hand I screamed "I fell. Pat, I fell." That's quite the waker-upper!!

Pat became ENTman and washed off the blood and stated that I had a cut on my nose that "looks pretty deep." At this point I didn't know whether to cry or laugh. Either way, the reaction would make my nose hurt even more. He put a bandaid over my nose and said "I think you'll be ok."

But the bleeding wouldn't stop. I started to feel a little light headed. For some odd reason, instead of going right away to the ER, I texted my sister. How was she going to help me? Immediately she said GO TO THE ER. But was this injury really ER worthy? Would I be told to just go home cause I have a little owie on my nose?

Looking for a second opinion, I texted my daughter, the NP. She didn't respond. So I texted her husband, a nurse anesthetist. He quickly texted back GO TO THE ER NOW.

It was a consensus. Second opinion agreed with the first. Off to the ER we go. The ER Nurse and PA both say I needed xrays. Which were done. I was calming down now figuring the PA would just tell me that I have a bruise and nothing to worry about.

Then I made the mistake. I hadn't seen myself in a mirror since the fall. And there was no mirror in the ER room. I asked Pat to take a photo of me using my cell phone. He did and showed it to me.

Now I have a natural big German nose. But this photo was UN BE LI EV AB LE! I just stared at it. I wanted to cry but couldn't. My nose was too congested for snot tears.

The ER PA returned with the xray results. "It's broken. In two spots." I hung my heavy laden nosed head.

Two places? Did he say two places?

"Good news tho. Alignment looked good."

There is absolutely and utterly no good news in a fractured nose. Not even James Earl Jones can make that sentence sound pretty.

A nose. The most prominent feature of a person's face. Broken.

It hit me then. How can one function with a nose fracture?? I mean really, think about it. How can you breathe with a broken nose? This is serious congestion!! How could I ever go to work?

The ER PA kinda shrugged his shoulders and said, "You should be able to go to work on Monday. Ice it and take ibruprofen. If there is any significant change, you could go see an ENT physician. " And out the door he went.

The ER nurse was more understanding. She informed me that I would have black eyes and it would take time to heal. But I should be fine. She gave me a hug as we left the ER room.

Did they NOT look at my face? Did I have to show them the photo on my cell phone?? I'm a mess. My nose is now the size of the State of Vermont and my eyes are starting to get puffy. And what is that pounding in my head?

Back at home and within 1 hour the raccoon eyes start to appear. The eye lids that once sheltered my eyeballs are now dark darker darkest purple marshmellows. And there is something really funky going on in my upper cheek bones. And I really cannot breathe through my nostrils.

The fall happened on a Saturday. And by Monday my face was one big purple grape. No question I needed expert advise from a ENT specialist.

My first visit with Dr. was eventful. The nurse took lots of photographs. Of my nose. Up my nose, over my nose, the sides of my nose. It was basically a mug shot of my nose. I imagined an overhead photograph of my nose being used at the next ENT conference. "This woman had an exceptional fall. Just LOOK at the size of that thing!"

But the photo taking made me think that I should document my daily healing. Every morning I would wake up, walk to the bathroom to look in the mirror and see if this ugly duckling had improved. And every morning I would take my cell phone and take a photo.

I knew NO ONE would believe how horrendous this fall was. Even I have heard others say "Oh I fell this weekend" and we just say "well, get better soon!" No one would say that if they saw me. They would gasp and point and have no words. Yup, it was that bad.

I sent day #2 photo to my boss by text. He texted back "Funny picture." Apparently he didn't believe it was really me in the photo. I then sent the photo to my sister and my daughters. They were shocked.

Every day thereafter I would take a photo of me and send it to my sister and my daughters. My daughters, being supportive, would say "You'll get better." Or "you look better than yesterday." My loving sister texted back "You look rough." Nothing like sisterly love to say the truth.

I did look rough. I looked like I just lost the heavy weight championship. No shining belt award for me tho. Instead I got a plastic squeezeable netti pot.

Two weeks it took for me to be able to hide the bruises enough to go out in public. Two weeks of black eyes, black cheeks, black lips. Every day the blood would settle lower in my face. The first couple of days I could hide the bruises with a pair of oversized sunglasses. But since I wasn't going any where, and the sunglasses hurt sitting on my broken nose bridge, it wasn't worth it.

I couldn't read cause I couldn't wear my glasses. I could barely eat my lip was so swollen. Nothing smelled good anyways. I wanted to sit and cry and have a pity party for one, but I couldn't cry. I knew then I would have to blow my nose and just the thought of that made me cringe. TV became my soul mate and Drew Carey & Ellen Degeneres became my new best friends.

Just JUST when I was beginning to heal, day #14, I caught a head cold. This has GOT to be the worst thing E V E R for a person with a broken nose. E V E R. I could feel the sneeze coming and I swear I thought it would kill me. I steadied myself for the AHCHOO trying to mentally make it go away. AHHHHHCHOOOOOO.

It didn't kill me. I survived the sneeze. Then I knew I would live to tell the tale.

So again, it's just me and my nose. A new, different kind of red. Head cold red. I can't smell the Vicks when I smear it on my body and I don't know if that is a result of the fracture or the headcold.

I swear I may never be able to smell again. And this is the season for smelling!! The baking, the evergreens, the candles, even the smell of the first snow fall!!

My husband asked me what I wanted for Christmas this year.

I whispered, "I want all the kings horses and all the kings men to come to our house and make me smell again."

If he buys me soap........I will have to kill him.