A Thing I Find Annoying

I’m just going to go ahead and start off today the right way, by telling you about one thing that grates my nerves. This is obviously a very “#firstworld” problem, if you will grant me the use of this super insensitive hashtag (which I also find annoying en masse). If you think this blog entry is about you, I can almost guarantee you it’s not. If you’re easily offended, please stop here. If you continue on and are offended, I’m sorry in advance. Let’s still be friends.

Be friends or else

I’ve been reading a few blogs lately that I can’t agree with more (It’s a Dog Lick Baby World, Chocolate is My Life, Cheaper Than Therapy, etc.) about the concept of “Mommy Wars.” I know a lot of friends and Facebook people (also friendsy?) who are having babies right now, many of them for the first time; and a lot of them are worried about being judged. There’s guilt about having kids before you even conceive (which is another reason I’m sticking with animals… that, and the part where kids turn into teenagers). Why are we putting this kind of pressure on moms and ourselves?

Cat moms are moms too

I can’t say I’ve experienced this for myself (obviously), but I think a lot of it is perpetuated by 1. the media, 2. the internet, 3. stupid people. The media wants to increase clicks, and likes, and shares. So when they post stupid articles with ridiculous headlines, “Celebrity holds baby upside-down by one leg for entire photography shoot,” we’ll all click to see the pictures, share it with our friends and say, “OMG, Celebrity FamousPerson is a turrible parent!” Then we’ll all comment on the Facebook story and say, “This is why we can’t have nice things.”

Or they’ll take a tiny glimpse of a story and blow it out of proportion. Like the lady who tweeted Delta about breastfeeding. The majority of the time, it seems like people are just stupid/don’t know to respond and are not biased against you and your particular hangup. Plenty of moms I know breastfeed and pump, and they just go do their thing where they can and it’s over. They’re not like, “You WOULD NOT believe the people who are judging me for feeding my baby.” Because no one is. We’re all adults here.

A new mom I follow on Instagram posted this weekend about how awkward it was that no one was making eye contact with her while she breastfed. I’m sure that made her feel like a lonely outcast, but I attribute the whole situation to everyone halfway acknowledging what’s going and not wanting to be the bad guy. Just like when someone farts in a crowded room. Everyone knows what happened, but no one is going to be the person to be like… “THIS HAPPENED!”

The average (read: non-famous, non-ruckus-causing) mom doesn’t want to be that person who is sitting on a bench breastfeeding and acts aggressively toward every passerby. “YEAH! That’s right. Feeding my baby! Got something to say about it? Come at me, bro!” But every passerby doesn’t know what kind of mom that breastfeeding mom is, so they don’t know if it’s appropriate or not to make eye contact. If they do, they don’t know how long is too long. Will the mom think I’m a creeper trying to sneak a peak? And, if you dare, should you comment? What do you say in those situations? No one should be ashamed to feed her baby in public, but because of all this media hoopla, we passersby don’t want to be the next Delta to get our shit handed to us when we just don’t know what to do in that situation.

Facebook helps, too, since we’re all awesome through the Facebook filter. On Facebook, I eat healthy, exercise a lot, read brain-enhancing articles, fight for the little guy, etc. In real life, I eat a bunch of junk food and am lazy while I read smut articles about celebrities mistreating their poor, unloved children, and do nothing about it.

Along the same lines as the Moms vs. Moms warz, there seems to be this moms vs. non-moms war that I was unaware also existed. This is absolutely not the case for everyone I know, and I’m sure moms vs, kidless women is a response to the issue discussed in the previous paragraphs (thanks, gossip magz). We non-parents get that you like to post pictures and videos of your kids on Facebook and Instagram, and (speaking for myself and the people I’ve talked with), we’re totally fine with it. Just because I don’t want kids right now (or maybe ever) doesn’t mean I don’t recognize a cute baby when I see one, think it’s also hilarious that your kid makes fart sounds on purpose and laughs at it, or appreciate that you grew that inside you and pushed/had it cut out (ouch times a million).

You’re totally awesome for that. But playing the “If you don’t like it, get over it. You’ll never know a love this strong.” card is just plain rude.

Firstly, you don’t know me. And you don’t know the people who see that. Imagine if you had been trying for a baby forever but it just wasn’t happening and you read that. “You’ll never know this kind of love!” Ouch.

Secondly, just because I don’t have a kid doesn’t mean I don’t know what love is (Jenny). Sure, I didn’t push a bowling ball out of a bagel-sized cervix, but I’ve been loved and have loved in return. I have loved something/one so much that I would do anything for it/that person. I get that you have an emotional bond that I’ll never understand, but I probably have one or two of those that you’ll never understand as well. This isn’t an emotional bond competition. By acting like it is, you’re perpetuating the media mom wars. So cut it out and let’s all just be happy for the choices we’ve made and the peoples/things we love.

Thirdly, the next time I see one of those posts, I’m going to copy and paste it word-for-word and post it on my social media accounts with a picture of all my cats in onesies. That’s how logical the love-competition sentiment seems to me.

Similarly, I’ve seen a lot of people share articles with headlines like, “Why it’s ok to be childless” or “What to say to people when they say, ‘You Need Kids ASAP’” or “I don’t want to have kids, lay off my case!” or “The benefits of choosing a barren womb.” Are these really necessary? Again, think of all those people who would LOVE to have kids but can’t. Flaunting your choice to ignore fertility is like throwing away $100 bills while people in poverty are forced to watch. This is also known as the “Be happy with what you have and STFU” principle.

When we post articles like this (yes, we, I’m sure I’ve done it), we’re essentially saying, “Look, social media. I’m making life choices on purpose.” Pretty much everyone I know is aware that I feel nowhere near prepared enough to take care of another small, needy human. I don’t need to shove articles in their faces as to why. Could you imagine if there were articles written like that in the other direction? “Why I stand behind my decision to have kids!” No one would read that. Well, moms probably would to get away from the other articles.

All in all, the main point of this long-ass rambling blog post was to say, as women–childless or childful–we’ve been pawns of the media creating these imaginary wars between us forever. Whether or not we should vote (thanks, Ann Coulter), whether or not we should work outside the home, whether or not we should be having kids, whether or not we should breastfeed our kids in public or cover up, etc. Let’s just all work to support each other in our own personal choices, not judge, and create differences where we don’t need to. Why can’t we be friends? Why can’t we be friends?

 If you’re a mom, please tell us what we’re supposed to do in every situation that has the potential to be awkward for you. If you’re a non-mom, have you experienced the mom vs non-mom wars? What do you do?

Burn, Baby, Burn

This past weekend was the perfect time to relax and do nothing. We did do a little something, but mostly just rested and got ready for the upcoming week. Sean’s dad was in town for a dentist conference, so we were able to meet with him Saturday morning for breakfast. We tried a place in downtown Woodstock called J. Christopher’s and it was pretty good. There’s really no way to mess up breakfast, but I don’t know how a breakfast place can be better than all the others. It was just… good breakfast. I got eggs, bacon, potatoes, an English muffin, and a piece of French toast. Sean helped me finish most of it off, but I put up a valiant effort to get through it all.

It was a drizzly and chilly morning, but Sean’s dad took us to Home depot in his big truck so Sean could get my early birthday present–a grill! I can’t wait to master the art of grilling. it was gross on Saturday, but I made Sunday official GrillDay. My grilling mantra was to go big or go home. I tried to grill everything, which maybe wasn’t the best choice.

After a grueling and cold trail run Sunday morning, I tried to grill some leftover turkey breasts for a salad topper. That wasn’t the best choice, but it worked. For dinner, I got ambitious and tried to grill salmon, asparagus, and sweet potato wedges. Against Sean’s wisdom and advice, I put the sweet potato wedges right on the grill instead of in some foil. I burned 3/4 of them. Sad face. I also left the asparagus on too long and they got mushy. Aaaand, I may have overcooked the fish. But. BUT. BUT!!! Practice makes perfect. So, I’m sure I can only get better. And maybe perfect my technique.

Along with a grill and grill accessories (like tongs! and grill covers! etc.), I got these adorable little pig corn holders. I cannot wait to grill some corn on the cob and eat them with the little pig holders. So cutes!

As mentioned earlier, we made our way out to Kennesaw Mountain this Sunday for a trail run. We had a 9-mile training run scheduled for our upcoming half in April. I thought a change of scenery would serve us well, so I suggested we make it a trail run instead of a road run. Whew. That was a rough transition.

We did a 7-mile loop and called it a day. After completing (a very slow) 14.5 in the CrossFit Open on Friday, I was done and done. I try not to take naps on Sunday because it messes with Sunday night sleep (which usually isn’t awesome for me anyway, since I’m always worrying about Monday), but after that trail run, I conked out for about an hour. Sean knows the no-nap Sunday rule, so he tried to get me up, and I did not want to participate. True love is putting up with someone’s half awake attempts to go back to sleep at all costs.

Sorry for going so long between postings. I just haven’t had too much interesting stuff going on. Hope your Tuesday is magnificent!

Abusing the Contacts

Sorry I’ve been MIA for so long. It’s kinda weird not to write here a few times a week. I know not too many people really care, but I care. I’ve just been working on a lot of projects, which have been eating up the very small amount of spare time I have on hand before and after work. I could sacrifice sleep like the geniuses of the world and masters of their craft, but I haven’t gotten to that point of passion about not sleeping. I’ll def make sure to share once my projects are completed and if they are successful. Hahaha.

Not much has been happening on my end of the world recently. I finally made it to the eye doctor this week. Last time I went was back when we first moved to Georgia. I was almost out of contact lenses, though, so I made the appointment to get my eyes rechecked.

When I got there, they took my current lens prescription and my glasses to run some tests on them. I did all those really uncomfortable tests where they blow air in your eyes, blind you with bright lights, and then ask you to find very faintly displayed dots and wiggly lines. The last one was a macular degeneration test, and I kept over-anticipating the appearance of the wiggly lines and pushing the button before I even saw anything. Whoops!

They sat me down in a waiting room without my contacts or glasses. I have terrible vision, so I was just sitting there almost completely blind. People kept passing by, and I didn’t know if they were smiling at me or even looking my way. I didn’t want to be rude, so I just smiled at everyone who passed. But for some reason when I have no concept of vision, smiling also seems weird and fake. It’s not like I can see my own face when I smile and can see. But I felt like, without being able to see the people, I forgot how to smile genuinely. So I was just sitting there fake smiling at people who may or may not be looking at me.

I finally got my glasses back, and went to see the doctor. He was nice enough, but seemed really detached. Almost like he didn’t want to be there. Go figure. Me either. We did the typical eye doctor thing, “Ok, read these letters. Tell which is better, 1… or 2… 1… or 2…” That went on for a while.

Until! Until he told me the the vision in my left eye had gotten a little worse, and that he could see from the “shine a very bright light in your eye” picture that I had been “abusing my contacts.” He kept saying that phrase over and over, “abusing your contacts.”

Apparently, the contacts that I like, and the ones my eyes had gotten used to, were an older type that didn’t let as much oxygen into the eye. That, coupled with the fact that I “abuse the contacts” (meaning I wear them LONG past their expiration date) means that my eyes aren’t getting enough oxygen. So to compensate, blood vessels are starting to encroach into my cornea.

After that long explanation, he showed me all these pictures that I think were supposed to scare me, but I’m not an eye doctor so they just looked like blue-tinted photos of up-close eyeballs. So I pretended to be concerned with my actual eyeballs instead of how much this new “development” was going to cost me.

The eye man said he didn’t really want to prescribe me the same kind of contacts again, and asked me to try daily contacts. The whole concept of daily contacts seems SO WASTEFUL to me, but I’m not an adult yet, and don’t know how to stand up for myself in medical situations. So I accepted in hopes that my eyeballs would fix themselves, and I won’t be completely blind by 30.

I did ask how expensive they were, and he said, “These are a little more expensive than your current contact lenses, but you won’t be buying cases or solutions, so it should even out in the end.” Ok, cool. Thanks bro.

He told me to try the daily contacts out for a few days and then call to order if they are ok, and come in if they don’t work. When I checked out, the lady said, “Oh, a 90-day supply is $80 with your insurance.” Cool story. That’s not too bad.

My eyes adjusted to the lenses, so I called to order, and THAT lady informed me that a 90-day supply was indeed $80… per box, per eye, per month. I’m not sure you’re aware, but “per something” means multiply. So, a 90-day supply was actually, in fact, closer to $500 than to $80. Excuse me while I try to pick my jaw up off the floor.

I don’t know what world eye doctor man lives in, but contact solution and cases and supplies and whatever else, does not equate to almost $500 in 90 days. This means that I will probably be keeping my old glasses (since I don’t wear them super often) and asking for a contribution for contact lenses for my birthday from Sean. That is just the best birthday present I could think of. Except for maybe a vacuum… Le sigh.

One day I’ll be a real adult and stick up for myself with medical professionals. There needs to be a college class in THAT. And basic financial management. If there’s anything the last 12 months has taught me, it’s that medical professionals rarely actually care about you. They care more about pushing you through the system as fast as possible, getting the most money from you in as short a time, and making sure you spend the most money on products that your insurance may or may not cover.

Am I missing anything? Any tips on how to be an adult at the doctor?