Friday, August 31, 2012

Six Year Old + Scissors

I prematurely patted myself on the back. I thought I was going to make it through child rearing without anyone giving themselves a haircut. Spice once accidently hacked off a chunk from the back of her hair while doing an art project, but she has so much hair that it really wasn’t a big deal.

I met the girls at my mom’s on Tuesday after work. I brought pizza so we sat down to have dinner and I thought something looked funny about Spice. I asked if she had cut her hair and she first tried to deny it. So I pointed out that her bangs (which she never had before) were sticking straight up. She tried to pat them down and admitted she cut her hair.

Me: Why did you cut your hair?
Spice: Because it was hanging in my face.
Me: Why didn’t you just push it back?
Spice: Because I had scissors.

Normally I’m a fast thinker and can come back with something… but that? I had no words. I guess in her six-year-old little head, it made perfect sense to use scissors because they were readily available. I told her that in the future she should tuck her hair back or put a headband on, but cutting her own hair just isn’t ok.

So she’ll start first grade with rooster hair. Every time EN and I look at her we hold our fingers in front of our foreheads, mimicking her bangs and we yell, “COCK A DOODLE DOOO!” and she laughs. Yesterday she couldn’t stop laughing when I called her Spike.

We got back-to-school haircuts yesterday. Sugar wants hers to grow out to she just had the ends trimmed. Spice had hair down to her behind and she requested that it get cut “up to her boobs” for first grade. It pained me greatly to watch 5 ½ inches of hair pile up on the floor. I know she wanted to go even shorter, but my heart couldn’t take it.Sugar asked our friend the stylist, "Aren't you going to fix her bangs?" and our friend said, "There's no fixing that!"

Spice's "boob length" haircut. If you look really close,
you can see her spiky bangs sticking straight up in the front.

This morning she ran her fingers through her hair, marveling at how short it is now, then she ruffled her bangs… I don’t think she meant to speak out loud… “Maybe they just need to be shorter.”

Scissors are now considered contraband at the castle. 

Ice Princess

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

For the Love of Pinterest

When we got together with the good in-laws (divorce cleanly split the good and the bad nearly three decades ago) back in May, my favorite sister-in-law kept commenting about this thing called Pinterest that she thought was so fantastic. I told her that I was on there, but thought it wasn’t very good. I never really got past the first page of pretty pictures… I couldn’t really figure out how to navigate and thought it was a waste of time. I didn’t understand how many friends claimed to be addicts… and claimed to find all kinds of good craft ideas, recipes, humorous quotes, organizational ideas for the home… Again, all I saw were pretty pictures.

Bossy sister-in-law told me to try again. I told her to shut up.

Then came a day that I was bored at work. I got bored on Facebook. I didn’t feel like cleaning my desk or filing the ten years’ worth of crap laying around in the file room. So I wandered over to Pinterest. Since I figured that my favorite sissy loved it so much, I would start by looking at her stuff. Before long, I was creating my own boards and repinning her stuff.

In what seemed like minutes, hours went by. Suddenly I had boards full of recipes, ideas, crafts… There was a ton of shit that I had to go home and do immediately. I was going to sew some quilts and decorate for Halloween, fall and Christmas at once. I was going to cook 37 meals in my crock pot and I was going to freeze 50 bags full of stuff for future crock pot meals. I had 15 cakes I wanted to bake that day and a dozen brownie recipes that begged to be made first.

That, my friends, is what Pinterest will do to you. They put up beautiful pictures and make everything seem so easy. You will be excited about your newfound knowledge, trips and tricks and you will want to try them all at once. In your Pinterest euphoria, you will forget that you don’t have the ingredients or supplies to make any of that shit, and you will have to spend hundreds to get prepared. By then, your euphoria will have turned into a gigantic hangover and you will need a nap.  

I vowed not to be one of those women that sits in front of a computer planning a thousand things, but doing none… I have actually used several recipes… They were all ok in my eyes, but were very well received by others.

Crock pot beef with mushrooms and
secret ingredient... Diet Sprite! 

Popcorn with white chocolate and
crushed Oreos... too sweet for me!

I thought this recipe was bland. Sister
suggested that I might have cooked it
wrong. How dare she. 

Pinterest is not perfect though… if you pin something that you have already pinned, it doesn’t tell you. It’s also not possible to forward a pin directly to a friend for them to check it out. Some images are “dead,” meaning that you click on them and are lead nowhere or to a broken link. Of course this happens to the images that you are the most excited about. Pinterest can be a dream crusher.

And then there’s the issue of feeling inadequate. My house isn’t up to snuff, my kids lunches aren’t organic and the sandwiches aren’t cut into heart-shapes. And even if I followed every direction to the T, my crafty attempts would pale in comparison to the beautiful visions dancing before my eyes on that blasted site.

Then there's the issue that if I make these for Spice's first grade
Halloween party, Sugar will be pissed that she didn't get those.
Solution: make extra for Sugar to bring for her friends!

If you heaven’t checked Pinterest out yet, I encourage you to do so. Even if you aren’t into holiday decorating, crafts, kid snacks, there are lots of other things to look at. Start by stalking people you know that are already on there… Look at their boards and get lost from there.

I texted my favorite sister-in-law today and I told her that we should blow off her sister’s wedding in a few weeks, kidnap Stepmommy, drink, cook shit and get all crafty. She’s down with it.

Then she said, “I knew you would like it once you got into it.” I told her to shut up. 

Ice Princess

Monday, August 27, 2012

Country Yo' Boston Asses

It’s no secret that I love music. I have blogged about it multiple times and have used song titles as blog titles once or twice. Ok, maybe three times. Music ties many of my memories together and often I hear a song and think, “Remember when…”

I hear constantly about concerts coming to my area and look endlessly at available tickets and pricing, but I rarely go. Afterwards, I kick myself in the ass repeatedly for not biting the bullet and going. I’ve wanted to see Kenny Chesney for years. Boo and I talked about going together for years and last year I even looked at tickets, but again, didn’t end up going.

This year, Skinny Bitch, who is not a country fan, planned to go with her sister. If she can go, why can’t we? Especially because this year, Tim McGraw was touring with him as well. Two of my favorites? I MUST go! Two weeks ago I texted Boo and asked if she still wanted to go. We settled on a maximum ticket price and I was off on a search. Luckily there were plenty of tickets available through second sellers like Stub Hub. I made the purchase and we planned our tailgating extravaganza.

Finally, the big day arrived. We were off early, thinking we had plenty of time. We didn’t plan on coming across several accidents along the way and the trip took much longer than expected. We pulled the chairs and grill out of her trunk and sat down with our drinks while the chicken was cooking. I looked at her and said, “Wow, we are hanging out without kids!”

We took our time eating, had a few drinks and wandered over to the stadium where we waited in ridiculous lines for t-shirts. We found our seats and were quite pleased to see how good they were. I have never been to an outdoor concert in a stadium and I was blown away by the number of people in attendance. It turns out that Gillette Stadium seats 67,000 for a concert.

Tim McGraw was about to come on and the big screens showed him walking up to come out onto the stage. I watched as he walked slowly while flexing his hands, a nervous gesture perhaps? It’s easy to forget that even though these guys are big and famous, they are still human. I’m sure putting on a good show to satisfy tens of thousands of fans would cause anyone a bit of stress. Or maybe not?

He opened  the show with “Felt Good on My Lips” which was our official summer song last year. He played song after song and I kept thinking how much I loved each one, but the best moment of his performance for me was when he sang “Live Like You were Dying” and 67,000 people sang along. Dark or not, I put my sunglasses on so I could cry a little.

Faith Hill is a lucky woman!

Nice rear view

Too soon his turn was over and I decided to find the ladies room. I knew that if I didn’t, I’d be stuck leaving in the middle of Kenny Chesney’s performance and that just wasn’t ok. While I was in the bathroom line, I finally found a vendor selling the beer I had been looking for. I asked the girls behind me if they’d hold my spot and they graciously said yes. Now, if you are thinking only an idiot would buy a drink BEFORE going into the bathroom, you would be correct.

I did my business and bent to pull up my pants. My phone fell out of my bag and I reached down to grab it. My bag swung around and hit that beer bottle like it had a target on it. My $9.00 bottle of beer was puddled on the floor of the bathroom. I was seething, especially when I left the bathroom and found that there were multiple vendors right next to my section that sold my brand of beer. I sucked it up and bought another.

And now it was time for Kenny to take the stage. The man does not disappoint. He is amazing and captivates the audience. And again, he I got to hear song after favorite song. People laugh at country music and say it’s twangy and all about the dog driving off in the pick-up truck while your friend steals your best girl. However, the songs had recurring themes that have touched all of us… there were so many moments during the concert when I identified with the lyrics that I really should blog a separate post about it.

By far, the best moments of the concert were seeing Tim and Kenny interact with each other. The genuinely seemed to care about each other and had a great time sharing the stage. I know that they’re performers and acting a part is key, but I would be stunned if I heard that their interactions were “all for show.”

And the concert wound down and my head was in a confused place. I had a great time. This show was the stuff dreams were made of. Seeing them live was definitely a Bucket List item. I wasn’t prepared for the feeling of loss that would come over me at the closing… This was an event that I waited for anxiously. The anticipation of a good time to come was gone and I felt a little sad. Checking off that item took my breath away… until I realized that it doesn’t have to be a one-timer. Hitting a Bucket List item more than once is a bonus and this girl definitely feels the need to hit the jackpot.

If I could say thank you to the Brothers of the Sun for rocking my world, I definitely would. I thank my friend Boo for being a fun partner in crime for the day. It’s a day I’ll never forget. 

Ice Princess

Monday, August 20, 2012

Potty Mouths

I’ve said many times in this blog that it’s a good thing God gave me little girls. I am a precious flower and my girls are too. We even have unicorns living in our backyard, y’all!

If we are such a delicate, polite bunch, why do topics like poop, toots and burps come up on a daily basis? Why is it that these topics never get old? And why is it that the creation of these sounds with other body parts-armpits and even knees for the really talented folk-cause the chicks to break into gales of laughter? And why is it that the teensiest mention of something even remotely bathroom related causes the unicorn-riding princesses to shriek with delight?

For some reason, every time we eat at my parents’ house, Spice needs to excuse herself from the table to use the bathroom. She delights in informing us, “Gotta poop!” every time. She’ll return to the table full of pep and usually with a question or two that she dreamt up while she was doing her business. I always ask her, “did you wash your hands?” and she’ll respond, “Nope! Did that this morning! They’re still clean!” and I send her back to wash them. Then she shoves her hands under my nose because she’s used a lot of soap to prove that she washed them.

If we are at home, she’ll use the bathroom closest to where the people are. That way she can whistle, sing, or shout out questions when she thinks them up. At my mom’s house, the bathroom is far away from the dining room (thank God) so Spice is left to her own devices while she goes potty. I didn’t think anything of that until she excused herself from the table TWICE last week. I had the good fortune to use the bathroom after her second trip and was surprised to find toilet paper squares littering the floor. The squares had been meticulously folded into fans. Honestly, I was afraid to ask if she was bored or if she needed to fan herself.

Friday we returned home from dinner to find that we had lost power (again). Sugar raced into the house and needed to go to the bathroom. She too feels the need to keep everyone up –to-date on exactly what she’s accomplished while in the restroom. Spice seemed a little bothered by the fact that there were no lights, “How are you going to see what you did?”

Dear God, really?

So I asked her if she always looked in the toilet and she said, “OF COURSE I DO. I need to see what kind it is!”

Kind? There are different kinds? Before I could engage my brain-which would have told me to not explore this any further-I said, “What do you mean?”

And she said, “Well, you know, there’s poop-poop, and there’s diarrhea poop. Then there’s puffy poops too.” I wised up and didn’t comment at all on the puffy poops.  

“And then there’s different colors too. Sometimes it’ll be brown or black. Even green or yellow.”

So I asked Sugar, “Do you look in the toilet too?” She said, “Yeah, but I’m not looking for color or any of that. I just look to see if my poops floating or not.” I couldn’t help it… “What???” and she explained that she learned in science that if you are sick, your poop will float. I have to say, I’m not a fan of 5th grade science. She learned about asexual reproduction, frogs that could change sex and floating poops.

Given that Sugar is now 11, I am hoping that we’re near the end of toilet talk with her. Soon enough, even a glance in her direction will cause her agony and embarrassment. Until then, I still have quiet moments in the car that are interrupted with, “Ohh! That was a stinker!” and we all race to put down the windows and continue our travels with our heads sticking out while we gasp for fresh air. 

Ice Princess

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Cool Chicks Wear Head Scarves

My friend with cancer had her second chemo treatment on Tuesday. As was predicted by those treating her, her hair started falling out with a vengeance on Monday. She texted to say that she had decided to have her head shaved. She texted a few hours later and I assumed she had gone through with it. I sent a few texts to make sure she was all right.

This morning was confusing. Her daughter came over to play with my girls, but said that she wasn’t allowed to come inside. The girls entertained themselves outside for hours. My friend’s husband texted in the afternoon to say that he had shaved my friend’s head, which left me confused. Then he texted and asked if I could send their daughter home in a bit. I told him that I was making the girls a snack and that I would send her home when they were done.

Within ten minutes, he was in my driveway urging his daughter home and left without speaking to me. He told Sugar and Spice that I should text him about dinner. I was confused, thinking I misunderstood that she shaved her head earlier in the week and that he perhaps wanted his daughter home immediately and I kept her too long.

Because my friend had been so strong all along, it never occurred to me that things might have been hellish in their house this morning. Everything came to light when I got to their house later that afternoon-feeling like a schmuck because they had asked us over for dinner. Shouldn’t I be cooking for them?

As it turns out, my friend shaved most of her head on Monday, but kept it long in the front, similar to Rihanna’s hairstyle. When she showered today, what was left long started falling out. My strong friend, who seemed to be sailing through most of this, lost it. She called her husband up and asked him to shave the rest of her hair… and it devastated her. She insisted on watching in the mirror and was so overwrought that she started shaking and passed out.

Her husband relayed all of this to me while wearing sunglasses. Judging by the expression on the rest of his face, he was as overwhelmed as she was. I saw him cry several times the night of her surgery, but he kept hanging onto the fact that she was so strong about everything. Today, he didn’t have that left to hang on to. I simply listened as he told me what happened… there really are no right words to say. He also told me that he came to pick up their daughter early because he had an errand to run and didn’t want her coming home to find her mother with a shaved head.

I didn’t feel right being there, having him cook for us while my friend was napping. After being there for a short time, it was obvious he just needed to have someone else around. He needed to watch his daughter being light-hearted, playing with her friends.

My friend joined us about an hour later. We sat outside to enjoy the nice afternoon. Sugar and Spice came over right away to say hi to her and didn’t even bat an eyelash to see her wearing a head wrap. Watching them treat her like they always had made me so proud. In fact, Spice almost immediately complimented her on her pretty head covering. My friend told them she had plenty of others in the house if they’d like to wear one too. Before long, all the little girls were doing gymnastics in the yard with their do-rags on.

While I struggle internally with knowing the right things to say and do, sometimes I just need to remember that treating someone like you always have is the best medicine.

And having a cool head covering… well, that’s just a bonus.

Ice Princess

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Not Worth My Time

I’ve waited a week to post about my participation in the school committee to see if my feelings changed and time would lead me to a different conclusion.

Nope. It sucked. The committee was useless and I regret that I took time off from work to take part in this.

Where to begin? The day before the first meeting, an email gets sent out that the meeting is being rescheduled to start at noon because meetings such as these are considered public and therefore must be advertised as such 24 hours in advance of the meeting. Apparently, the constant press about this committee and the frequent notices about when the meetings were going to be held simply weren’t enough.

We showed up at noon and learned that all of the parents that volunteered were invited to be part of the committee (so much for me being special!). All ten of us. Yes, that’s right. In a town of 17,000 where everyone under the sun is bitching about the middle school and vice principal, only ten signed up to be part of this. While disgusted with the light showing, I can’t help but be jealous that everyone else is so much smarter than me and steered clear of this buffoonery.  In addition to parents, there was a nice variety of teachers, paraprofessionals (I think we called them teacher’s aides in the olden days) and administration.

I thought that we were going into this meeting to identify the issues in the school and to research them. Even though I knew this committee was “phase one” of the plan to fix the school, I had high hopes that we’d go in there and do such a great job that the district would not have to hire (and the taxpayers would not have to pay for) the consultant that everyone thinks shouldn’t be hired anyway. Not for nothing, but isn’t it the job of the superintendent to fix problems within the schools?

Instead, we were each given a post-it pad and told to come up with questions related to the following categories: curriculum, assessment and instruction, leadership and organization and culture and community. Then we were to put our questions under the specific category that they fell under. After that, we gathered into three groups and sorted through the questions, placing them all into “like” categories.

Despite the fact that there was a “leadership” and organization” category, we were not allowed to discuss personnel. We were not to discuss rumor and innuendo. Several committee members tried to get the “white elephant” out in the open, to no avail. In fact, the administration was taken out of the equation to the degree that we were left to discuss the anger one parent felt about there not being a school spirit week, and another mother’s angst about her kid having to wait outside in the mornings after the bus dropped her off at the school.

I took time off for this?

I left that three-hour meeting feeling like my time would have been better spent organizing my sock drawer. I contemplated quitting, just not showing up for the second meeting. However, I’m a glutton for punishment and was actually the first to arrive for that meeting.

This six-hour meeting started with a rehash of the first meeting, then we were given our trusty post-it pads back and told to write good things we knew to be true about the aforementioned categories. Then we did the same thing as the last meeting… We gathered into our groups and sorted post-its into subcategories.

Despite the fact that the initial press release called this phase “important work,” I beg to differ. In fact, if my town is about to spend tens of thousands on a consultant to come in and pinpoint the areas needing to be addressed, I’d surely hope that the consultant would be able to figure things out pretty quickly on his/her own.

And so… my participation is over. I feel like I didn’t bring much to the table, nor did I participate in anything that will bring great change to my town or the schools my daughters will attend. Nice move on the part of the administration and school board to make people feel like they were part of the process.

Ice Princess 

Monday, August 13, 2012

Nothing Says Sexy Like A Sleep Mask

While I was in the midst of all the mammograms and ultrasounds and doctor’s appointments, I asked my regular doctor to check my blood because it didn’t feel like the anemia was going away. Last week, they sent me the results via some fancy “E-Chart” email, and I had a follow up appointment today.

Because I have an honorary MD (comes free when you become a mother), I came to my own conclusions upon reading the results. I figured today that he would tell me I am overweight, I eat too much; I drink too much and need medicine for high blood pressure.  Because I KNEW that’s what he was going to tell me, I started my day off with a three-mile walk with two dogs and zero children. It was very peaceful.

When I arrived for the appointment I convinced the medical assistant that we really didn’t need my weight again as we just got that a few weeks ago. Since it was Monday morning, she gave me a free pass. She did take my blood pressure but didn’t comment, so I assume all was well there. Then she said that there was a new member of the practice (a nurse practitioner) and would I mind if she came in with the doctor. Of course I don’t mind an extra body in the room for a lecture.

So he came in and started going through my results. All these numbers are borderline high, blah blah blah… “The numbers would easily go down with a 5-10 pound weight loss.” Ok, really? Let’s call a spade a spade, I’m in the “need to lose 50 pounds region”, but whatever, I’ll take it! So I nearly broke my arm patting myself on the back when I casually mentioned by three-mile walk. OF COURSE I BRAGGED.

Then the big news: the iron is helping and I am no longer anemic, but my some-f-word level is still low, so I should keep taking the iron… in fact, double up if I am not afraid of getting constipated (no thanks). We engage in a long conversation about my sleep habits and then we take a right turn without warning…

DR: Do you snore?
Me: OF COURSE NOT. My husband says I do though. But we all know he lies.
DR: The reason I ask is because I think you have sleep apnea.

He then proceeds to recite all the symptoms I have listed in our sleep discussion and suggests that I should have a sleep study done.

After I booked my annual physical, I left the office and called EN. Our conversation went something like this:

Me: OMG, you are going to shit your pants laughing when you hear this… The doctor asked me if I snore…
EN: Yes, you snore all the freakin’ time. Last night you snored all night even.
Me: Stop lying! He thinks I have sleep apnea and wants me to go do a sleep study.
EN: STFU! You are going to go the doctor’s and take a nap???

I sniffed and said in the snottiest voice I could muster… “I might have a medical condition that requires me to nap on a very regular basis. You should be respectful of my potential condition.”

If I listen closely, I can still hear him laughing. 

Another picture stolen from Google. How sexy is THIS?!

Ice Princess

Monday, August 6, 2012

Surrounded by Beauty Queens!

As a little girl, I loved watching beauty pageants. It didn’t matter if it was Miss USA, Miss America or Miss Universe, I tuned in. I would watch with a pen and paper and keep track of everyone’s scores. I figured that I would know who the winner was before it was even announced. That is a perfect indication as to what a dork I was am.

I stopped watching the pageants a long time ago, I guess I just lost interest. However, I recently started watching Toddlers and Tiaras occasionally with Spice. She claims that she would like to do this, but I contend that the first time I say, “No you can’t play outside because you have to practice your flaming baton twirling,” she’ll lose her shit and I’ll be stuck with thousands of dollars in accoutrements and she’ll be out making mud pies.

As a child, I always thought these women were beautiful and talented and I would have given my right leg to look like one of them… and to be as poised as they were. Since I started watching Toddlers with Spice, I’ve come to see where the stereotype given to beauty queens comes from. These little girls are spoiled, screaming brats who have an entire staff waiting on them.

When Skinny Bitch initially invited me to attend this fundraiser for our state’s pageants, I didn’t have a whole lot of interest. I thought we’d spend the day surrounded by a bunch of spoiled princesses that simpered and batted their eyelashes and repeated the one line about saving disadvantaged youth and world peace that they all seem to rehearse.

Despite my initial misgivings, I plunked down a princely sum to bring my girls on a three-hour brunch cruise on a lake about an hour from our house. The six of us-Skinny and her girls, me and mine-drove up together. We set off early as we were both afraid of getting lost. Her girls behaved like angels while mine fought on the way up. We were lucky and found our way immediately, so we had plenty of time to people watch and I could continue to lecture my girls about getting along. At one point, I had to threaten calling EN to come pick us up while Skinny and her girls actually went on the cruise. The heat surely didn’t help anyone’s attitude.

It was finally time to board after the kids all posed with the slew of pageant girls in attendance. It was easy to look at them all and think, “What a bunch of beautiful, stuck up, snotty bitches” and that really is how I went into this event. I’m generally not open minded and fully expected to drive home and make fun of these girls with Skinny.

Instead, I was impressed with how genuine and sweet the girls were. They gathered for pictures and encouraged all the kids attending to pose with them. They were endlessly patient as the little girls tried on their “real crowns” and then were presented with crowns they could keep. They signed countless autographs, encouraged the little girls to join them on the dance floor, and interacted with the crowd in general. They all participated in and seemed to enjoy the Tissue Paper Fashion Show, where each beauty queen teamed up with a little girl and designed a gown for her using tissue paper and stickers.  

I should also mention here that there didn’t seem to be any “pageant moms” in attendance either. We interacted with several mothers and they were all just as gracious as their daughters.

I worried that Sugar might be too old for this event, but she enjoyed herself thoroughly. I knew Spice would adore every moment, and she did. I knew she would think her partner for the fashion show was her new best friend and she did not disappoint. She tore out a page from her new autograph book and carefully wrote down her phone number so she could keep in touch with her new friend. Sadly, we didn’t see her again before leaving the ship-HA!

I must finally be a mature grown up. I attended an event that I thought would be lame and I talked with people that I would never have bothered to before… and I’m glad I did. Every stereotype I had about beauty queens and their mothers was shot to hell. I was just so impressed by how kind and considerate they were to everyone they interacted with. Perhaps it is all an act and the image we have in our heads about them being conceited and obnoxious are true… If that’s the case,  then every one of these 20+ girls need to be nominated for Oscars because they sure had me fooled!

Definitely another lesson on why I should be a little more open-minded… You just never know!

Ice Princess 

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Mammos and Ultras

After a few restless nights, Monday morning finally arrived and I was off to my various appointments, hoping for an all-clear and very nervous. I had issues before I even arrived. There are Dunkin Donuts everywhere when you don’t need one. Have an appointment or two that you need to be on time for? Good luck finding one.

My first appointment was for the underarm lumps, which I still could not feel. Not going to lie, the moment I set eyes on the ultrasound technician, I intensely disliked her. It didn’t help that as soon as she opened her mouth I was blessed to hear someone speaking to me in my mother-in-law’s voice. Fantastic, let’s get the show on the road.

She asked me where the lump was and I said that I didn’t know, I have never felt it but my doctor and husband had. So she did the ultrasound muttering the entire time about not seeing any lymph nodes. To the best of my knowledge, no one said anything about lymph nodes. So she squawked and bitched but didn’t really say much. I asked if she found anything and she said, “Nope” then left the room to talk to the overseeing doctor. She came back in, did a second ultrasound on the same spot that sure looked like a lump to my untrained eye, and sent me on my way. She muttered something about my doctor calling me to follow up.

Then I headed down to Boob Central for the mammogram. Despite the fact that these two offices were affiliated and in the same building, the atmosphere was totally different. The people in this office seemed really nice and there was definitely a nicer aura, a kinder, gentler place. I was 45 minutes early and the nice woman working at the desk assured me I would be seen early. As I started to sit down in the waiting room, they called my name-I guess she wasn’t kidding.

I was delivered to a space that held another waiting room, lockers and dressing rooms. I was told to remove clothing from waist up and put on the fantastic gown. I don’t go braless anywhere, ever, so this was new to me. I won’t be doing this again in the near future. Also disconcerting was the fact that I was in the room with three other women and one was obviously sickly and wearing a wig. The medical reasons for getting these tests became reality… sitting in the same room with me.

Before long, it was my turn to be called in and I immediately liked Boob Checker. Sweet, sweet woman. In fact, she was so nice that I didn’t even tell her I normally make a person buy me dinner before I whip the girls out.  My new friend asked a bunch of questions about pregnancy, boob health, etc. She looked my records up and was surprised to see that I had just come from an ultrasound and that I had been given zero information about it. Further, the only information in my medical records was shots of the non-existent lump in my underarm.

I will say that the first mammogram wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought it would be. Considering that the biggest part of a breast is the part against your chest, the pressure put on your boob isn’t on the most sensitive part. Don’t get me wrong, this wasn’t fun, but I thought it would be more of a “pinch” than the “smoosh” it really was.

My friend the Boob Checker initially told me that I could leave after she took two shots of each boob. I was surprised then, when she said, “I’m sorry, I’m going to need you to stay.” Any warm and fuzzy feelings I had after being squished left the building. So I went and sat in another room. Two of my friends from the first waiting room were there, then another woman with a wig joined us. I didn’t want to make friends or make eye contact. I wanted to cry.

Boob Checker came back for me and said she saw something that might be dense tissue, but she conferred with the doctor and they needed to take more pictures. Here’s a hint to you, my friends: if you are in for a mammogram and they change out one of the squishers for a smaller one, RUN, don’t walk. Smaller means that the pressure is more centralized and that they’re looking in a smaller area.

So she attempts to arrange me and my boob on her contraption. I needed to lean, drape my arm, tilt my head, slouch and not breathe all at once. Then she slammed down the torture device and I may have shouted out “Sweet Jesus!” But we made it through and now I could leave. NOT SO FAST!

“We’ll need to look a little closer. Let’s go for an ultrasound.” Thankfully, they have their own machines so I didn’t have to go back to the She-Bitch. In fact, the ultrasound tech in Boob Central was as fantastic as Boob Checker.

Long story short, there’s something in my left breast that needed to be looked at, measured and marked up in the ultrasound. They’re fairly certain that it’s a benign growth, possibly even a wayward lymph node, and I need to have a recheck in six months.

As for the initial cause of concern, the lumps under my arms, I am waiting to from my doctor. I will tell you one thing, if there is some lump that needs to be removed, I’m asking the doctor to keep that little sucker. I will wrap it in the nicest Christmas paper I have and send it to the She-Bitch ultrasound tech that insisted she couldn't see anything. 

And advice to all my friends over 40: Get the girls checked. It's really not so bad. 

I cannot lie... I lifted this image from Google. ;o)

Ice Princess