…really, it’s me!

To me,
I know I’m a piece of work, but am I really a work of fiction? Books should relate to the reader, but I might be too weird. The truth of it is that my life is not fiction, at least not until after I finish writing about it. It turns out that most times my truth is stranger than fiction!


As research for the book, I took a quiz to see what kind of a person I am. Quizzes are informative. That’s why we buy the absurd magazines, right—for the quiz?

1. Locked out of the house? …batting 1.000 so far!
2. Locked the keys in the car? …weekly? …in with the child?
3. Left a family member at the store? …and noticed?
4. Put something unusual into the refrigerator? ha!
5. Used the wrong name for a family member? Always!
6. Left the iron on. …for weeks?
7. Dialed a number and forgot who you called? … again.
8. Turned white clothes pink in the wash? … today?
9. Put your heel through your hem—fixed it with tape?
10. Had a zipper break—and fixed it with staples?
11. Wore two different shoes—color and style?
12. Shopped for groceries without a purse—and money?
13. Left without the children in the car—and the groceries?
14. Forgot where you were going—and how to get there?
15. Discovered food in the oven left there from last night—and ate it for breakfast!

I have a perfect score! 100%, and that means I’m absolutely normal, the epitome of perfection! This quiz proves it, therefore everyone should be able to relate to me.[1] So the book should be a success!

Can you tell me you’ve never been on hold so long, you forgot who you called? The clerk comes back on the line and asks politely for whom I am holding and the only word I can think of is hamburger.

“I misplaced my hamburger,” I respond. She perkily responds, “Okay,” and she puts me back on hold … almost. She comes back on, “Did you say hamburger?” Laughter wells in her voice.
Employees at stores are not allowed to show shock, surprise or emotion of any kind, but she must have reached her saturation level.

Reality Bite: I provide entertainment on some level anyway.

[1] Or at least consider me an expert.


To me
I’ve finished writing three times. At some point in my writing, I must admit the truth—that the font is not at fault. It’s not going to get any better when it’s printed in a different format—with the spelling and grammar checked—that no matter how much I try to improve it, there may not be much anyone can do. This is it! Let it go! Terina

January, I immerse myself in my new venture. I sink into the writing, surfacing for nothing and no one. I float it by a friend who loves it and a contest… that hates it.

February, I live on the theory that chocolate slows down the aging process … it may not be true, but who dares risk it?

March: The guilt sets in and I write less insanely, but still manage to accomplish the better part of nothing.

April: My parents read and then pan the book. They know me, and they’re right. Dad thinks it’s bombastic, boring, and bilious. “Learn from other humorists, or go back to writing instruction manuals.” Mom gently agrees that college may be an option.

To me,
This book is about uniqueness, being an oddball just like everybody else. Isn’t it? Maybe it’s not. Parents know best. How many times have I, myself, echoed that mantra? T

It’s May and I’m seeking the voice—the melodious tone that keeps the reader enrapt—the mellifluous essence of the soul. When I find mine, it’s a raucous din that makes no sense whatsoever. This too may never end, not in June, or even July. This jaunt may be a ten-year odyssey into the future.[1]

June passes, then July and while on vacation, I find a glut of fresh butchers to carve away the gristle! As they read the essays, they express an initial enthusiasm to go at it with a meat cleaver, but they are easily overwhelmed by the task at hand and they either nod off or drift away.

[1] The teenager’s homework assignment is Homer. Can you tell?


...fiction, friction

“Make it fiction,” I’m advised. “The average person can’t identify with your character because no one believes this person is real.” So in August the book becomes an unauthorized biography,[1] but writing in third person is like weird channeling, and I lapse back into the creativity of reading other people’s writing.

To me,
Abstaining from writing is not so bad, only a little depressing, which means I’m not dressing, cooking, cleaning or doing anything around the house…still. But everyone has done my job so well. T.

September canters by with a second rewrite, but the ideas come like a recalcitrant mule! I’m told agents hate books written in first person. It’s October and still the ideas balk. I’m not writing in November either. Well… unless an idea ambles past then I, with all bets, am off![2]

November, I can no longer truss up the family, so I quit cold turkey. I pluck myself away from the drudge and vow to spend more time waddling with toddlers, just for the pure joy of it.

It’s December and I can’t squeeze any more into the overflowing package of life, so I’m going to wrap it up in January, and resolve never to write again.

There go the resolutions, and I’m repeating the whole process again. Will it ever be finished? And does it matter? Truthfully, who cares, except the people who are covering for me, doing the chores and keeping house.

Reality Bite: It’s their turn. That’s Life.

[1] What could be more fictitious than that?
[2] This sentences rankles the grammar puss like no other.


No base jumping photographs, so I'm stuck with my hot air ballooning... It felt just as risky.
I’m hooked! Don’t tell me to stop writing. At this point I would just find something else to cram into the crevice. Living nearly out of control is equal to the thrill of BASE jumping.

I’m energized and each day is filled with extreme goals and ridiculous expectations that keep me perched and peeking right over the precipice.
I’d like to think that somehow, somewhere in the world of karma,[1] there are extra points awarded for level of difficulty. My risk ratio peaks at ten and the failure rate edges toward 100%, but somehow the back-up chute continues to inflate just in time to prevent the face plant.
Every close call is flushed with adrenaline and the rush is so exhilarating that it’s addictive. I really should be headed for rehab. I’ll schedule that in between, let’s see…

Reality Bite: Beware the strait jacket.

[1] Karma, I once knew a girl named Karma. How's that for messing with the universe?


…maxed out

Today, when I push away from the writing desk, I look around and discover a new disorder I've self-diagnosed[1] as M.E.S.S.—Maximum Effort Stress Syndrome, caused by cramming more stuff into a life that is already full.

This malady oozes out when I pile more onto whatever I was buried under before and I watch like a doomed test monkey, as this particular strain merges and morphs with my previous disorder—the one that someone else creates from the order I’ve just made.

Dear Me,
I have become The Jerk
[2] as I exit every room I’ve entered with armloads of nothing but this remote, this chair, this jacket, this telephone, this screwdriver, this blow dryer and this magazine. This is all I need, as I stuff my pockets and waistband with every misplaced item and then I deport each item back to its own land.

I’m tired of hearing, “Mom, where is my (fill in the blank)?” I reply with “Have you looked where it belongs?” It’s rhetorical because they don’t even know where it is supposed to be.

Reality Bite: 'Cause I’m the only one who’s ever put it there!

[1] After an exhaustive, unrelated internet search.
[2] The movie



Over the years, I’ve attempted to clear the bilge from the decks with every inventive remedy. I’ve charged a bounty for kidnapped items. I’ve raked up, and counted the stash and named the highest offender my personal slave for a day. I’ve even swabbed it into one gigantic pile in the living room and made the scurvy rats walk the plank, but none of these feel as satisfying as my most recent solution.

I now bury the booty wherever it doesn’t belong. I know it’s not a new idea for me. In the past I’ve done it accidentally anyway, but now in the future, I will it purposely and continue on without apology.

The daughter responds after an extended search where she finds her calculator in the cereal box in the pantry. She mutters, “Spare me the creative mother.” But, it’s back to the drawing board for the son who thinks the winter hat box on the top shelf of the front hall closet is now the perfect nesting place for all of his school books.

Dear Me,
Writing may accomplish what I’ve been striving for since the dawn of conception—the shifting of the heavy weight of responsibility onto the progeny’s precarious stack. It may upset that balance of things and cause it all to topple, but when desperate measures result in more desperate times, the bottom line is: Who will really notice?

Reality bite: Desperately seeking something.


…quizzical enjoyment

Vacation preparation is part of the torture. If I'm going to visit the very edge of desolation I must have every modern convenience. When you think about gathering all the gear don't your brain cells feel the burn?

Finally, after a decade of feeling the pack-up dread, the only organizer bone in my body—the one deep inside my pinkie—made another rare appearance and dared me to walk on the wild side in the husbands type-A toe shoes. "I will join him in his meticulous planning!" I toddled.

And so I compiled a CCC, comprehensive computerized camping list.[1] From that list, I packed a permanent grub box so we could dash off—spur of the moment, whenever the feral urge struck.

To me,
I’m sitting here peacefully contemplating my dirty hands and four fingernails broken off below the quick. I’m watching the children race around near an open fire with sharp sticks, axes and knives and I don’t care. I’m neither medicated nor blind (although my depth perception is a little off due to a misdirected spurt of kerosene).

I’m filthy, and I reek of fire, but all of this reminds me that camping is another experience that fits the vacation criteria. Do I hear the echo of the theme from the movie, Deliverance?

However, the fact that we live in tornado country, is reason enough to require that the box serve a dual purpose as our family emergency preparedness survival box. I’ve dipped into it to save me during many emergencies throughout the year—seeking a can opener or flashlight during a power outage, or scavenging MREs (military for Meals Ready to Eat, a.k.a. Mystical Recycled Earwax), for an unexpected dinner party.

So now when we go camping, the family can spend the trip gazing longingly into the depleted box and speaking of it with fond memories.

Reality Bite: There is no greater anguish than a faultless recollection of past perfection.[2]

[1] Say that three times fast.

[2] Me, again, brilliant me. Unless I’ve forgotten that I heard it already somewhere else first …



When the husband yodels the camping call, if the children are feeling energetic, they tie down the technology hog, and make it regurgitate the original “CCC” list. Then they dash through the house to retrieve the misplaced gear and refill the box.

Although, some trips—okay, most trips,--they don’t. Then we camp survivor-style. Survival camping requires only the basics: pointy sticks, sharp knives and fire.

The only other necessity for the perfect camping experience is the addition of water. Within the first five minutes of the trip, all the clothing has to be dragged out, doused and hung out on poison ivy clothes vines, just waiting to be rained upon.

Reality Bite: On the bright side, survival camping doesn’t require coordinating shoes



Even fully outfitted, our camping vacations are no Camp-In-Style magazine cover. There is no R.V. with satellite T.V. or even a pop-up trailer. I have to form alliances to get a spot in the tent and even then I don’t get to sleep in a bed. I have to conspire and connive to win the coveted full-length mattress pad.

Our equipment is all the backpacking variety, which according to the advertisements is different than regular camping gear. Unfortunately, the cheap cherub in me can’t bear to purchase all things for each of the husband’s hobbies, so I suffer because backpacking equipment is virtually weightless, but essentially worthless.

Hikers don’t care what they sleep upon or what they eat. They are deprivation seekers,[1] whose ultimate goal is complete and absolute misery. They hike twenty miles of tight little lines on a geologic map in search of the elusive “greater challenge.”

To me,
On our last trip, his idea of a dainty stroll down to the river took a detour off the trail and we ended up fording the raging torrent with the four-year old perched on Daddy’s shoulders while we struggled without a machete through bramble and thicket, trying to retrace our path back to civilized camping. Vote me off, T.

After putting myself through that kind of survival ordeal, I see why the target audience for backpacking is the bold and the brave and I admit, I’m married to it.

Reality Bite: All in the guise of promoting a little marriage survival.

[1] Another nice word for masochists.


…from dust to dust

I’d add dirt, bugs and ashes to every home cooked meal if they would eat it like they do camp food. Within minutes of our arrival, even the finicky one is wolfing down raw hotdogs and slurping marshmallow out of an inch-thick shell of ash. Maybe they worry that they’ll starve (with good reason).

We rarely see any animals, (thank goodness most of our forays are into areas where the natural wildlife has been decimated) so we spend most days at the water’s edge, practicing geo-biology (a biological study of geology), which involves finding rocks that look like animals and repatriating them into their natural habitat, the water.

I don’t worry about fishing for anything, because I wouldn’t want to hook any of the native species. Heaven knows what I’d do if we caught one. If anything can thrive in the outflow of today’s pollutants it would have to be trapped and muzzled before it was rendered edible.

Reality Bite: Survival Rule #1: If it doesn’t bite you first…


…divine nature

So I’m lounging here in the hammock, waking myself periodically to adjust the body’s slip and slant. (One end is tied lower than the other, but I’m too content to care). I’m reeking of campfire and while sucking the marshmallow off my elbow I’m musing… “Why is it that life is so complex?” And more importantly, “Why do I enjoy this so much?”

Dear me,
Our extended family camping trip went relatively well. We did run into a few animals in the form of bike jockeys wearing tight little outfits, which were spitting and hissing about our campsite.

I would have thought that camping in the meadow would be their complaint, but our setting up seven tents in the middle of the parking lot was the bug that crept up their shorts.

Admittedly, it could have been the diapers and cribs that set them off too. There were juice boxes and food that we had flung to the feral children scattered about and when they were told that we don’t usually clean up until we’ve finished trashing a joint, they were rather peeved.

I told them to take their cute little selves off, or I would have to swat them off with the husband’s sierra card. T.

So, here I sway gently, contented, calm and peaceful, admiring nature and the quiet harmony of my surroundings… the girl scouts yodeling in the camp showers, the dogs baying across the tent spaces, the garbeling of a Spanish ham radio station, the gunshots in the distance. The only city sounds missing are the sirens. The children pinging windshields with pebbles flung from slingshots down at the creek should fix that.

Ah, this is the Life.

Dear me,
The sister’s cruise vacation sounds wonderful—every aspect, from the food to the entertainment. I look forward to hearing about a “real” vacation and seeing photos of the satiated couple—sometime next year.
I expect that is how long it will take her to dig out from beneath the glut of laundry, housecleaning and homework.
Tee hee hee, T.

Reality Bite: I am a confused study of contrasts in life, the universe and everything.

…skiing off piste

Dear me,
Remember, if it’s a misery vacation that he is planning, it inevitably includes the cold: hiking, glacier glissading, or skiing! Brrr, T

Everything about skiing is work, even shopping for gear. At the sport store, I’m exhausted after just the fitting. The salesman tells me, “These boots should fit comfortably—a little like vice-grips!” So, it only makes sense that ski boots are a necessary aspect of misery vacations!

The rapture of removing them at the end of the ski day is only equaled—in my memory, to the relief of child birth. Unfortunately, like labor, if I give it a few months, I forget the pain and there I go again.

Dear me,
Remember that our second date was skiing. I went because I was still trying to impress him, the guy that puts skiing above education (he skipped school), or the law, (he faked identification to work on the lifts at a resort) and he picked me!

For the next twenty years, only taking off three years to give birth, I have endured the torture that is his passion. As yin/yang opposites, we are the perfectly partnered pair.

I tell the daughter, “Be warned.”
On a date, remember misery has long-term significance."

In spite of each new gadget invented to ease the misery of skiing, the trek to the slopes is still rife with dangers—shoulders bearing guillotine skis and ski poles that have stars of impalement at the ends. One cavalier turn and I can decapitate the whole avalanche patrol.

I make it to the slopes with a heel-toe, heel-toe, gear-toting lurch, only to wonder once I’m there, where to stick all those handy transportation gadgets—down the bibs in front, or do I hook ‘em up and let ‘em flap off my gators behind?

Skiing has its own unique verbiage to disguise its inherent wretchedness. The ski term off-piste means to glide rapturously in deep powder off trail, through snow-covered trees. When I ski off-piste, it happens accidentally, flailing frantically out of control, dodging and ducking trees, ditching skis and poles, and any sharp object that could imperil my ungainly finish.

But, most of the time, I ski “piste-off,” fighting the ski position, half bent over, leaning precariously forward, sliding and slipping while all the way screaming, and wildly zipping past signs that say slow.

To me,
The youngest tagged a tree while off-piste-ing. I volunteer to sacrifice the rest of the day and follow the child strapped on the patrol’s snow sled to the x-ray machine. It could’ve been me.
Hmmm, I’ll have to keep that idea in mind, T.

Ski promoters boast that this sport appeals to a wide range of individuals, regardless of one's proficiency level, clothing, or accessories. As long as you have buckets of money, you’re in!

These same promoters minimize the fact that skiing is the great equalizer in one other very important aspect; appearance. No face, even professionally lifted, looks good while skiing. Everybody is red faced—from windburn on a windy day, sunburn on a sunny one or frostbite from the terminal state of skiing. The typical hairstyle is either hat-head or windswept and you can easily spot a true skier by the snotty nose, raccoon goggle burn, and the stiff-legged plod.

It’s equally as easy to identify a phony—a skier that gets on the lift and skis straight down the greens directly to the lodge—because they are still able to sit comfortably—even recline and lift their feet up, read a book and drink cocoa. I admire the fact that in an emergency, they can fake a convincing injury and back it up with a most imaginative tale.

Reality Bite: That’s my kind of skier.


As I look back, I should have been clued in by our honeymoon—a prime example of his detailed torture. The sweet guy kept it a secret. In retrospect, that part was good. Had I known, I may have cancelled the wedding. An older, wiser, person would have realized that it was portend of our future together.

Dear Journal:
During this fun-filled week, I swear we have traversed four states and hiked across a national park that spans two nations. I packed for sunshine, beaches and warmth, yet just moments ago I was standing in knee-deep snow, short-sleeved and shivering having a memorial photo taken for posterity.
Our hotel is five-star; tour buses stop here to view it. It’s the focal point on the front of the national park map. The reservations had to be made months in advance, and the view is breathtaking … as seen from the reservation desk, because our room has no windows. Twin beds shoved together and a bathroom boasting of the original plumbing with a vintage claw foot bathtub, tepid water and chain pull toilet aren’t my idea of a honeymoon hotel …

As I may have mentioned before, the husband doesn’t believe in relaxing vacations. He believes in maximizing whatever opportunity we’ve afforded ourselves. I’ve hiked the wilderness areas (every year as my birthday surprise). I’ve RV’d across Alaska[1]  and we annually ski the “Greatest Snow on Earth.”[2] Our vacations are designed to make me look forward to going home again. And it works.

… We can’t afford to eat; the restaurant is also five-star, and they don’t need extra dishwashers. We jaunt into “town” morning, noon and night for meals. It’s a walking trail only—the entire community is, so we share the road with flora and fauna in the merry weather. When we hike back to the hotel, we’re starved and yet must trek out again.
None of this makes much difference to me because I’ve scheduled my first migraine ever to hit this week. On the upside, my soul-mate doesn’t have to go animal watching to view the habitat of a bear.
The new Mrs. Terina Dee.

This whole vacation situation is a result of two things: my inability to say no to him and our mutual aversion to divorce. It may also be my attitude. If I acted like I was having fun, the sadistic thrill would end and he would probably quit taking me.

Reality bite: I should be grateful. When he vacations with the “boys,” most of them schedule the next week off as sick leave.

[1] For future reference: When Alaska boasts of “shorts and tanks weather in June,” they mean for Alaskans. The rest of us, from the lower forty-eight, still wear layers, layers, and more layers. Bring rain gear, Alaska is 90% ice and the rest of it is falling water. T.

[2] Utah Ski Association ad campaign. *&^$%#!



I feast from life’s platter by literally wadding each day full and then chewing through it frantically trying to gulp down everything before I run out of breath. Modest and restrained are not part of my writing vocabulary.

I have become one of those persons who thirst for excitement, devour challenge, and gorge myself on new ideas, projects and people. And when it’s over, I will sigh deeply and then mop the plate and hope that my enthusiasm hasn’t left everyone around me nauseated.

Reality Bite: de gustibus non disputandum[1]

[1] There is no accounting for taste.


To me,
A house of order, a house of peace … Is that even attainable in my day and age? Today, I exceeded the recommended weight limit, broke the law of averages and worst of all, I’ve ignored the daily recommendations of fiber—all of which promise safety, reliability and a healthier colon. What next? T.

When I sit down to write, I get instant, immediate relief like that antacid commercial, (but unmedicated.) I just relax in my chair in a lotus position and chant my little two or three syllable M&M’s--mommy mantra[1] (anything that alludes to the promise of grown children), and I feel an immediate release as I sink into the oblivion of writing.

These mantras are trite phrases that I can repeat over and over in moments of stress to calm myself and return to reality. I use the tried and true--phrases like, “Life’s not fair, ” “I told you so,” “I’m the Mom that’s why,” and although my newest one is lengthy, it’s become one of my new personal favorites, “Life doesn’t have to make sense and therefore neither do I.”

It’s reassuring to find that in times of extreme duress, these perfect comebacks are creamy, yet satisfying and they don’t melt all over your hands.

To Me:
Is it relief or exhaustion I’m feeling? Who knows, and who cares. Whichever it is, it works. I chant and everyone thinks I’m a swami or a salami? T.

The added relaxation of writing pushes my stress level to maximum and reminds me that for complete rejuvenation, I must spend a moment of each day meditating in total comfort and reflection—seeking inspiration and pondering the beauties and purpose of life.

Another stress relieving technique—aromatherapy— comes very highly recommended. The process involves lighting a candle, sprinkling fragrant pillow potpourri and smoothing on lotions and potions to release tension and increase redolent reflection.[2] If I had time to do all that, would I be stressed?

Dear me,
I’m combining calming yoga positions with other activities. Downward dog works well while toilet brushing, and I sit in lotus while I slide about dusting the floor with my bottom.
However, writing while in sun salutation is too much of a challenge, and after accidentally testing a selection of yoga positions, I find I sleep best in corpse.
Striving to keep the knickers from twisting, T.

I’m driven by the race toward greater efficiency. I must multitask, or I waste time …but with yoga? Am I missing the point?

[1] All M&M’s are not candy coated, although chocolate still holds the #1 place when I’m desperate for self-meds.
[2] Certainly more pleasantly scented than Chapter 11’s opening. Wait for it. It’s not worth skipping ahead.


Most relaxation techniques make me snort—because if I find a moment of calm around here, I’m snoring. Any moment of peaceful introspection is interrupted by a nap. If I relax, I nod off. The head bobble isn’t caused by narcolepsy; but by life. I look forward to carpools, because I can sleep at the red lights—if I pay the children to wake me when the light turns green.

My volunteer opportunities of choice are bake sales and ticket-taking because those venues provide convenient on-site napping facilities. The thread-count on most linen table cloths is higher than my nicest sheets and in a pinch I can slip under the table and steal a snooze between customers.

If waiting in any line is license to nod off and snore, imagine the deadly nature of sitting at a computer typing. After the hands nod off and turn to dead weights, I’m forced to edit out page after page of endless letter a’s and j’s. If I compound the problem with soothing scents of candles or potpourri, I could lose entire days slumbering beneath the desk on my trash can pillow.

The family seems to think that the cause for my drowse is boredom, not exhaustion, so when I slide under the edge of the family’s patience, they salvage me from between the bed and wall (where I’ve slipped while in the process of making it) and announce that they have an idea! We’re going on vacation.

To me,
Admit it, vacations are really not a break from work, just a change of venue.
[1] Double yuck, T.

Reality Bite: Rescue me from relaxation.

[1] Somebody brilliant said that one! Okay, it was me.


…tenuous balance

I’m not the only person who trashes the van; but I am the driver and somehow that makes me ultimately at fault. I am just too busy for the biannual detoxification. I vow that after the last cleaning that required superfund certification and a 16-horse shop-vac, (I love those vacuums that suck up the dog and come back for more) that our days of eating en-route were over.

But life happens, and the trips stretch from here to eternity. The tormented toddler creates a solvent that weakens my resolve and I crack and then desperately grapple in my purse for stale crackers to fling over the backseat to the salivating screamer, who is buckled in for his safety and my sanity.

Hello me,
Mom always said, “He who makes the mess cleans it up!” How does that work? I haven’t figured out the details, but I love that idea and I’m adding it to my mommy mantras… It’s me again, T

I’m not surprised that immediately upon making the mental effort to delve into the depths of my vehicular filth, that it is just about then that the husband subdues all of his manly impulses and opens the door of the minivan.

When he is bombarded by the stench and the avalanche of detritus, he feels it is his therapeutic duty to add to my pile of guilt with his own form of belated intervention. [1]

“How can you, a sentient being, drive a vehicle in such a state of disgust?” he wonders out loud (much too loudly).

That’s what I get for going there—for mentally opening this whole disgusting bag of worms, but I have already been there and over-rationalized that, and I give him the summation of my intricate analysis: “It’s easy if I sit on only one cheek with the tips of the fingers barely touching the steering wheel. Then I don’t end up stuck to anything or with anything stuck to me.”[2]

To me, bizzy me,
Sorry, had to run in the middle of the last net-note. I left a child at preschool again, and I’m screeching off to pick him up.
“Mommy you promised,” he sniffs as he sits in the back seat gazing numbly out the window while he sucks his bottom lip.
Guilt ridden, I anguish out loud, “I gotta stop promising things I can’t produce!”
The oldest daughter overhears and responds, “Or, you could start producing things that you promise.”
Too busy and thinking again. I hate that! T.

When I run out of ready retorts and I find myself inching along the precipice—the very edge of sanity with one foot flailing, I remind myself that my feng shui of happiness is centered in finding peace and serenity amidst uproar and chaos.

To me,
I want the newest option for the vehicular straight jacket—the inclusion of a muzzle. I’m all for mandatory restraining devices in vehicles, for everyone up to and including fifteen-year-olds. T.

I practice on that balance beam, a strange version of yoga that is adaptable to every occasion. If I breathe deeply, cross my eyes and hum my calming mantra eerily off key, it seems that problems (and people) go away and I am pleasantly surprised by my balancing act at day’s end.

Reality Bite: I came through it all and didn’t strangle anybody.

[1] He has delayed ESP—extra sensory perfection, maybe Book Three?
[2] Lighthearted flippancy is preferable to howling hysteria.



To me,
Wormwood is told something to the effect of, “Don’t make them sin, only unable to prioritize.”
[1] That’s me. My life is a perpetual state of overwhelmed and exhausted, so why not add writing to the mix? I can do this … too. Love T.

I struggle to live with the notion that I can drive up to the garage, hop out, load myself up and make it to the back door with a child’s half-emptied ‘pack-pack’ slung over one shoulder and one of those plastic grocery bag slung by its handle over the crook of my elbow. Oh! And today’s to-do list shoved in my back pocket.

How does someone live like this? It’s simple. I don’t allow myself to notice. If I looked around and had time to evaluate, the small semblance of sanity that is still rattling around in the maze of my mind may find its way out.

Ha, me!
Stay-at-home Mom—what a misnomer, I muse as I drive across town to the practice de jour. What was I thinking? I’m working in all my spare time, so realistically my goal is to publish sometime next century.
Hopeful, T.

The balancing act is complete when I tilt my hip far to the right to support the arm holding the piano books, the sports bags and rogue library books that try to escape and join the jungle in the shadows under the seat.

I hate making a myriad of trips. It’s a personal pet peeve. I’d rather overload myself and leave whatever falls by the wayside to be retrieved on the next trip. Unfortunately, the next trip goes like the last trip, and the cast-offs accumulate-either in the vehicle or midway on the trail in between. If I had that one extra hand, then I could rake up the day’s trash and stash it in that last, desperate spot of storage; the waistband of my pants.

To me,
Today, I empathize with agoraphobics, who fear wide open spaces and never leave their homes. As the vehicle exits the garage on even the smallest errand, I drive into a time abyss, and when I return, hours have escaped, and I have no recollection of where the time went. T

Reality Bite: I refuse to be walking refuse.

[1] C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters. Maybe. That’s what I got out of it.