Latest Weebs Adventures, Turdlette Slings, and Stuff…

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Weebs loves to watch. He’s a super creepy little man and he will stalk me all over the house while I’m doing chores. It usually makes things like laundry or loading the dishwasher more fun because he stares in wonder at everything. So as I was switching laundry he comes creeping up behind me and flattens himself to blend in with the carpet that he does not match at all. I try to get pictures because it’s ridiculously cute but if he sees my phone change to camera he immediately does something less cute.  He will lay as flat as possible, even his ears go sideways and flatten out, but he’s got a gut on him and it flows out on either side and ruins the predator vibe he’s going for. I love it.

I like to get my chores going as soon as I wake up on Saturday morning for two reasons. 1. If I don’t I will wait until bedtime Sunday night and be extremely angry and tired on Monday. 2. If I look super busy right away I can choose the easier chores and Mancandy will usually feel bad and is left with the chores I avoid like the plague and wanted him to do anyway. And I don’t have to say a word. This doesn’t always work, but when it does I feel extremely sneaky and clever.

I started out with towels because if I got busy with something else and forgot them it wouldn’t be a big wrinkled mess. I don’t understand ironing, it doesn’t work for me…I’m pretty sure it’s voodoo. So if it shouldn’t be wrinkled I have to catch it right away when the dryer finishes. Which takes more attention to detail than I possess without a lot of coffee. So I was pulling towels out of the dryer and throwing underwear in (same reasoning). My little fat predator was watching every move. If socks dropped he swatted at them (from a good 2 feet away), what he lacks in depth perception he makes up for with determination.  He made little happy chortle sounds (to himself, as all great predators do) and waited with huge eyes to see what would happen. His world was made even more exciting when I stepped beside him (he immediately grabbed my sock, got a nail stuck on it, scratched me for holding onto his foot, and fought like a small tiger while I unsnagged his nail) to begin the lovely process of cleaning the litter boxes.  He LOVES playing defense while I try to remove what he deposits.

As I go I can usually avoid his swats at the scoop quite easily. He’s not exactly athletic. However, every now and then he uses a surprising amount of dexterity and his aim is true and he wins the round. Today he wasn’t even swatting at the scoop that often, he’d become sidetracked by the bag eating the scoops contents and was talking to it. All cats should talk to inanimate objects like this cat does. It’s the best.

I let my guard down. As I was moving several large, fresh movements o’cat bowels he struck. A little brown foot whipped out from underneath the scoop and smacked up and over. He has never been that quick nor that coordinated. I was neither of those things when cat crap attacked my face. MY FACE. I had to go wash (and there is NO amount of washing that suffices) little skid marks off of my face. And then go back and corral the freed turds from the great outdoors and get them back in the bag. And not squish the cat who was back in predator mode trying to make contact to smack his freed friends around the laundry room.

He will not be helping me with chores anymore.

My life is a dumpster fire. Swamp monster level 100 today folks. Happy Saturday!

Relationship Tests….AKA….that time I was super swamp monsterish and Ish. Got. Real.

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I have been trying, genuinely, to stick to my low carb, really strict diet. It’s not horrible; it just takes effort that I generally don’t put into, like, anything…but I was doing okay. There have been some rough patches where I decided to fat girl swan dive into sugar saturated anything. I have this self-destructive streak that ensures as soon as I see any results (like the fat waddle under my chin shrinking and a jawline kinda peeking out) I immediately have cravings so intense it’s physically painful.

Thanksgiving was rough. I went wild. Like, hog wild growled if anyone touched my food, or got near my food, or walked into the room while I was sticking my head in the feeding bucket. I told myself when we got back to TN I’d get back into my groove.

Ha.

We got back late on Sunday and when Mancandy offered to order delivery I was completely on board. One last Harrah before reining in my out of control inner child. Chinese sounded good after gorging on Turkey and stuffing.

I was hungry so even though it did not taste amazeballs, it was what I had, so I stuffed it down my gizzard. It was a disappointing Harrah. Mildly sad, I unpacked, sorted out animal medication and supplies, and glared at Mancandy who was thoroughly enjoying his dish. I do not care to suffer alone.

Keep in mind it tasted like cardboard and I ate every last bit. Tell me that doesn’t indicate a mental issue.

But alas, we had to go back to work so our routine needed to go back to normal. Comfy pj’s, brushed teeth, sleepy time meds down the hatch, and into peaceful slumber we crept. Except right before I was really asleep my stomach moved. Not just a gurgle or blurp either. That sucker moved from its normal location to my throat in a move that made me break into a sweat immediately.

I wasn’t sure what was going on, but I knew it wasn’t good.

I flew into the bathroom and through the door to the “water closet” at lightning speed. I didn’t stop to grab a trash can. That was a tragic mistake on my part. Of course, our trash can has little cut-outs so it wouldn’t have been great, but I digress.

I honestly didn’t know what to do. Kneel? Sit? WHAT IS GOING ON AND WHERE IS IT GOING TO COME OUT! I was drenched in sweat, everything hurt, and I was insanely nauseous but did not trust that I was safe to assume puking would be the only fun I’d have. I decided I’d rather clean up puke, so I sat.

I pictured the scene from aliens where the wee little alien protrudes through the ribs. In my mind, it would be bursting from my gut. I was about to open the door and grab a towel from the stupidly tiny towel closet when I heard a throat clear.

Mancandy was in the bathroom! Code red! This is NOT a drill!

I’m dripping sweat and cramping like my guts were in a vice grip. This was about to be real ugly real fast. He needed to leave.

“Um, are you okay?”

I went into a coughing fit that ended in a gag, and a weird “glurp” sound I’ve never made before.

I can hear him shuffling his feet and breathing his not sweaty normal breath.

“Can you just throw a towel down outside the door? I think I’m going to be sick.” Understatement. Such a massive huge gigantic ridonculous understatement.

“Can I do anything to help?” He was being so nice. I doubled over on a particularly vile cramp and my body flashed hot and cold at the same time.  My mouth was doing that gross drooling yet dry thing that happens right before you puke.

“No. Thanks. Oh god, I can’t talk, it’s go time.”

And it was.

I will spare you the details, mostly so I can keep a tiny amount of my pride intact.

But it was bad. So very, very bad.

I basically exploded.

There wasn’t room for embarrassment in the middle of it. I was just trying to survive.

There are little adorable frogs that puke up their guts, shovel out whatever offends them, and swallow their stomach back into the correct location.

I envied them. Desperately.

The violence of the episode ensured it was fairly short-lived. However, the after party meant I had to brush my teeth over and over, a quick sink bath to be less sweaty and gross, and then pass through the bedroom to get to the cleaning supplies and mop (it was a war zone).

He was sitting on the bed. I felt it was my duty to warn him, “Don’t go in there.” We blinked at each other.

He finally said, “That was really loud.”

I immediately blushed so hard my ears turned to fire and the shame made me wish to melt through the floor into a swampy mess of monster downstairs.

Side note: I inherited my Dad’s natural defense mechanism, involuntary scream puking! It’s a great party trick. Think puking, but while you’re heaving up your guts you scream out your rage. Involuntarily. Just BLAAAAARRRRRRGGGGGGGG at the top of your lungs.

He’d never been exposed to that little quirk. He was startled. I didn’t know what to do. I nodded and went to get cleaning supplies. I was walking as quickly as I could through the room on the return trip, dreading the job ahead, and he cleared his throat again.

“I don’t even really know what just happened. I thought you were trying to die politely without bothering me but I couldn’t stay and listen to….that. I didn’t know humans could make those….noises”.

How does one respond to that? I just went into the bathroom, slammed the door, and tried to get through as fast as possible. I may never eat Chinese food again.

By the time I got everything cleaned up I was cold and everything hurt. I did not want to go back out to the bedroom. I didn’t want to talk to him. I was pretty sure we probably shouldn’t talk ever again. You don’t come back from that. I’m a swamp monster at best, but listening to a swamp monster blarg is probably on a totally new level of not good.

I contemplated crying, it seemed like the correct response (very girly), but it was too much effort and I couldn’t spare what little water was left in my body. I kept my face down and shambled to the bed, crawling in on my side and staying as far away from him as possible. Humiliation doesn’t cover what just happened. I may have PTSD. He probably does too.

I could just feel him wanting to talk to me. I curled up, tried to shrink my giant self into a smaller form, and prayed he’d just fall asleep.

“Did you know there’s some kind of frog that pukes up its own stomach?” he murmured from the other side of the bed.

I couldn’t help but smile. I muttered that I had been jealous of them a little bit ago.

“Dear God that was so loud,” he said.

“Shut up” I replied.

“K.”

 

 

The War

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I’m doing battle. They don’t realize it, but we are at war. We have a garbage can and a recycling can in our kitchen. The garbage has a built in incentive to remove it regularly, it reeks if you don’t. We’re both fairly quick to take that out to the big garbage can in the garage. The recycling, however, ends up the leaning tower of plastics. It has become an art form to stack recyclable stuff on top of the can, I’m assuming everyone (kids and in-law types included) assume that if your piece drops then you are responsible for taking it out (not that they do) so there are intricate little towers built every single time. Like a weird Jenga. And there’s this assumption by all that taking recyclables out means only taking out what’s actually in the can. Anything that can be stacked to the side should be left inside to fill up the empty can immediately upon returning from the garage.

I enjoy when the small humans are here because I can make them take care of these things. However, there are down sides. Putting liners back in the cans must be brought up every single time. If they don’t put a liner in they then forget liners existed and all the snot rags and bits of leftover food end up in a concrete of grossness at the bottom that I then have to scrape out. Also, when taking trash/recycling out to the garage they feel it is appropriate to leave the door to the garage wide open. Letting my very very precious air conditioning escape, along with all of the animals. Trying to catch cats that don’t want to be caught in a hot, stinky, messy garage is the epitome of herding cats. By the time I get them in the two “normal” cats are angry and look for something to pee on. The dog is chewing on mysterious items I then have to wrestle her to take back. And the special cat is busy twirling his stress and usually has some sort of grease or oil all over him leaving little black kitty prints on the floor.

Not only this, but everyone overlooks that the lid of the garbage can is disgusting. I’m the only one who manages to see the gunk on it. Well, the dog notices and tries to help, but I don’t know what it is most of the time and refuse to let her do so. I have this crazy notion that if you smear some sort of thick mucus type substance on the lid of the pain, YOU should clean it up. My gender does not equate with I want to clean up all of your most disgusting habits and secretions so that you don’t have to spend another second away from your video games.

I’m just about to the point of temper tantrum. Which none of them have seen yet, and so thereby do not fear. They will learn. They will feel my wrath. And if they let out one single molecule of the deliciously cooled air in this house I will smite them and make my name legend. The end.

PS. I feel this post is proof I would be a bad mother. They would not live long. The end, for realsies.

I Hate Math. So There.

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I hate when I ride with Mancandy when he needs to stop for diesel. I tend to enjoy hanging out with Man O’Candy, and I LOVE his truck (he has a huge old work truck that I find delightful because I’m really a guy in my mindhole), so I forget every single time. But as soon as he’s back in the truck there are immediately numbers flung in my direction.

To preface the rant about to happen, I suck at math. And when I say I suck at math, I mean I know it’s a huge weakness (like diagnosed learning disability level weakness) and I avoid it at all costs in order to look more intelligent than I actually am. I wouldn’t mind looking slow so much if he wasn’t eerily good at math. We have so many books about math and calculus and physics and crap in this house and zero percent of them belong to me.

Mancandy and the mini candies LOVE math. Love and then some extra good gooey happy emotions. It’s the bee’s knees to them. They’re little wierdo’s fathered by a large weirdo. They enjoy trying to figure out physics problems while we’re stuck in traffic. Gag me with an oversized spoon. They’re all happily arguing about the effect (or is it affect? I can’t ever figure out which is which.) of gravity when an object moves upward (12 year old to 12 year old: “Not acceleration dummy, it would decelerate because gravity would steadily pull at it!”)

So I’m sitting there all innocently being crap at math, and a random duo of numbers heads my way.

“280 and 12, GO!”

I jump. It was a loud go and I’m starting to hear warning bells in the back on my mind. This is bad, but I’m not sure why yet. I just know I won’t like it.

I’m instantly defensive.

“Why are you yelling at me!? Go where!?”

And I remember at exactly the moment he gives me a look that says I’m a slightly broken thing he might be able to fix. Welcome to Enraged Italian 101.

“I am not doing division! I suck at it, there will be carrying of numbers, and I need to write it down, and you KNOW this makes me feel stupid! Why do you do this to me!?”

I get a sassy grin and “Practice makes perfect!”

I cannot adequately express the tangle of things in my brain. Violence, shame, anger, and amusement. And all sorts of other things sprinkled in, like seasonings. I don’t want to, but refusal just makes it worse. He’s as stubborn as I am, and despite being so pissed I’m vibrating I don’t want to actually start a real fight because I’m scared of a math problem. But just the idea of having to work through it terrifies me, and THAT makes me even more angry. There is no win in this, just humiliation and craptastic math skills.

I then try to stumble through it. Out loud. While he laughs and doles out praise of extremely simple thought processes that makes me angrier and stupidly happy all at once. When I’m trying in vain to finger write on the roof of the truck so I can see what stupid number I JUST came up with he seems really proud of himself. I’m going to put a dry erase board in that truck with markers so I can actually figure out the problem next time. And for the smarties in the crowd, the rules his jerk self made up involve no calculators. So my phone is out, even though I tried to be sneaky with that.

I don’t do emotions. They’re dumb. And it’s amazing and embarrassing showing off a huge weakness. Especially to someone you know is epically good at the thing you suck at.

Moral of the story: Dating someone good at math is great for most situations. Except when they try to make you better at math. Or just never go with them for fuel again. Or get stuck in traffic in the truck while all the people around you foam at the mouth over a physics problem. Cause that’s just not normal.

An Ode to My Front Door

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I was at the front door when I realized we had library books that needed to go back today. A lot of them. I’d taken out my usual tower, and Mancandy had borrowed several for the mini candy’s recent visit. Children’s books are oddly shaped and one was massively wide. I refuse to do the multiple trips to the car thing. Instead I threw my purse on my arm, got my keys ready in one hand, grabbed all 30 books (not that many but it felt like that many and like they were multiplying) in an awkward hug with giant kid book kicked into my ribs (they should be padded enough not to notice that but alas).

Our front door does not have the normal knob turny thing. It only closes securely when you flip the deadbolt. So if you are trying to say, lock the house with an armload of books, you have to try to pull on the key hard enough to keep the door flush with the frame yet not hard enough for the key to come out. You must also maintain constant pressure while convincing the key to turn.

I live in the south. It’s beyond hot and muggy right now, and our front porch is in the full sun with the heat reflecting off of all nearby surfaces. As soon as I stepped out with my huge load and turn back the dog is trying to come with me. A stern “NofortheloveofgodIdonothavetimetodealwithyourightnowit’ssounbelieveablyhotrightnowjesusdrippingchristIammelting!!!!!” made her tilt her head and start singing the song of her people. I was already sweating. Ergo, I was already angry. I ignored the screech-yowls, pulled the door and then had to throw my knee up to stop the dog from a new rush toward freedom when the rug that Mancandy has at the front door wadded up and blocked the door.  It does this every time I’m carrying something. And every time I swear I’m setting it on fire when I get back, but by then I’ve forgotten. After readjusting the stack of books so they’d stab a new place and stop slipping in my sweaty grip, I shoved the dog back and re-entered the house. Strange dance moves got the rug flattened back down. The dog had moved back, laid down, and instead of screeching was now making a very quiet yet astonishingly annoying high pitch whine. One foot on the rug, I balanced solely on that foot to take a step like a normal flipping human, and the rug started shooting out from under me at an unnatural velocity. I spent what felt like 10 minutes fighting to stay upright. Books went everywhere. The dog was dancing around me barking. The normal cat screeched as it ran away expressing its displeasure loudly. The not at all normal cat puffed up and started spinning in circles. I said all the bad words I knew and then made up some new ones.

 

Derp cat

This was derp cats expression.

 

I gathered books up again, made sure the rug was flat and spun around the door as I pulled it behind me so the dog and I didn’t have to fight again. Unfortunately, with the momentum I had going and the fact the outside of the door was approximately 89 billion degrees when my hand came into contact with it means I slammed into the storm door which slammed into the entryway and the books went flying again and the dog came bouncing out anyway. I would not have handled this gracefully on a cool day. I had negative patience for this type of shenanigan foolishness while sweating bullets.

I was so angry I don’t really know what I screamed at the dog. Something about sucking her soul out through her eyes before drinking it down if she did not get back into the house immediately. And there was a LOT more inappropriate language in that but I’ll spare your delicate eyeballs.

I was watching my fuzzy potato in cat form spin closer to me and make trilling noises. The dog bounded over as best able with her old self and scrambled inside to avoid my wrath. The spinning derp hadn’t gotten to me yet so I pulled the door closed. The rug tried to stop me but I screamed in primal rage and shoved it back into the spinning derp and the derp thinking this was a hilaaaaarious game and I might let her out again. There was the sound of scrambling but I don’t know what happened because the door was finally shut. And yet the first 20 times I tried to lock the bolt, the key would start to come out of the lock before it turned. I had sweat running down my back, down my face, and into my eyes. My side is permanently indented from the billion books that, at this point, weighed 3 metric tons shoved into my ribcage. Eventually, I got the stupid lock turned in the stupid door and got the stupid books into the stupid truck. I was drenched in sweat and hadn’t even gotten out to the public part of being out in public.

My first stop was the liquor store. It hadn’t originally been my mission, Mancandy had requested something, but it became my goal as I knew the house had no rum and after that adventure it NEEDED rum. I stomped into the store and asked the man to direct me to the rum. Keep in mind, the liquor store is at most a 5-minute drive. I was still sweaty and obviously furious. He saw the raging Italian and stammered directions before disappearing. I gathered up my booze and stomped to the register. A man popped up from behind it and asked if I’d be interested in champagne on sale. I glared at him until he took my money and went away.

I stomped outside clutching my bottles and saw someone parked beside my truck. We were the only vehicles in the lot. The problem with that is the fact there were people in the vehicle, windows down, and if he’d stuck his face even with his window he could have kissed my truck. I moved their way slowly, giving them time to realize they were in my trucks touch bubble.

A man got out of the car and made much too much eye contact from so far away. He was going to ask me for money or one of my bottles or something. I usually try to be quick and pleasant while telling those sorts of folks no. Today I had no fear. No stress. No social anxiety. I was full of sweat and rage. I started stomping. He began walking to me and the spiel started. I didn’t let him get past “Hey lady, can you…” before I drowned him out with my “It has been a pretty crap start to this day so I’m going to need you to not ask me for anything and move that car because I’m about to get in that truck and if I have to open the door into your car and climb in through your window I will do so. Do not test me today!”

His mouth hung open and as I got close enough for him to see the sweat fueled insanity in my eyes he backpedaled. He vaulted into his car, slammed it into reverse, and left the lot with hustle. It made me no less sweaty, but it did bring me much satisfaction.

It’s Opposite World

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My dog and I have never really been around children. We find them to be loud and sticky and they do not respect touch bubbles. Any time a child puts a sticky hand anywhere near me I immediately respond as most folks do when a wasp tries to sting them: jelly legs and gasping half screams. Plus when they learn to talk they start being difficult vocally as well as physically. I just don’t see the appeal. My dog has an even worse reaction to kids than I do, she is obviously terrified but her way of showing it is to growl and try to eat them. Parents tend to get uppity when your dog wants to eat their little bambino.

This is my fault, of course. I never socialized Bell with children (I didn’t socialize with anyone who had any). So moving in with a man who has a small army of clones that are often here for extended periods of time terrified me. He, however, couldn’t have been less concerned. He loves him some Bell, she’s in love with him, and love will conquer all. Except for kids. I told him I didn’t like kids. He laughed as if I was joking. I wasn’t. Yet here we are. And there are so so so many children.

The eldest of the Mancandy offspring is now 14. He’s caught in that awkward not really a kid but not yet an adult age and is the calmest of the little ones. Bella likes him. He pets her, talk’s sweet to her, and doesn’t jet around everywhere like a hummingbird on crack.

The twins are now 12, and they are still in the child stage of a druggie bird. Everything they do is in fast forward. They run into and out of rooms, instead of walking around they jump over, they throw things instead of handing them, and the noise is always at an insane decibel. There’s confusion about how sound travels because they can be 4 inches apart and they will scream everything they say to each other rather than talk in a normal tone.

Bella hated them. She wanted to like them, but as soon as they went from sleeping children to awake children she wanted no part of it. She would wait until my attention was elsewhere and she’d show them teeth if they came too close. She began guarding furniture. Then she guarded entire rooms. They finally came clean about her behavior and she was banished from the room if she acted like a donkey. She was never left with them unsupervised. She figured out that if she wanted to be where everyone else was (and like most dogs she very much wants to be in the middle of it) she had to mind her manners. I do not trust her with them alone, but she’s gotten much easier with them.

This past visit from Mancandy’s family was a big one. One of the mini-candies lives across the country so her visits are few and far between. She flew in, we scooped up her brothers, and Mancandy Parental Units came down. There were Candies of various ages everywhere. The youngest slept in our room on an air mattress. The boys kept their usual room. The parental unit inhabited the guest room. The house that seems pretty big most of the time became much too small. There were people everywhere. And children have a need to move things to places that make no sense. The house looked like a gaggle of raccoons had spent a couple hours gleefully tearing the house apart and had eaten everything in the house while deconstructing it. I took to locking myself in the water closet of the master bathroom with the outer door locked as well so I could pretend I didn’t hear anyone knocking. Two doors are sound proof you know. Often Bell came in to hang out with me.

I had no idea how my dog would handle this, and I was even more concerned about Weebles. His reactions are rarely predictable, and he doesn’t really know how to run away or defend himself. A gaggle of loud children plus my anti-kid dog and my confused potato cat seemed like a recipe for disaster. I was, fortunately, mistaken.

Bella figured out quickly the kids dropped food constantly. Especially the 9-year-old. Bell’s love of food (she’s definitely my dog) overrode her fear of the kids. She didn’t necessarily want to cuddle with them, but she was MUCH more at ease.  I could relax and not be on high alert for a launch to maul a child’s face.

Weebs, however, was the star of the show. He is the perfect cat for children. He’s fascinated by movement, so he would play with feet, toys, fingers, etc., for hours. He will grab but doesn’t scratch or bite. He’s too confused to object to being hauled around (the 9-year-old loved to carry him around). He doesn’t care if there are loud noises or fast movements. He’s not overwhelmed by 4 children crowded around him. He was absolute perfection. He got so much attention he’s been sleeping hardcore for 3 days straight and I don’t blame him a bit. Between trying to keep up with the other cats, be nosy and follow adults around, and trying to catch quick little fingers, toes, and dangled toys Weebs has never worked this hard in his life. His days were packed to the brim! He even got in on game night.

He’s the perfect cat for a huge family, which is exceedingly bizarre to me as I never wanted any children and somehow found myself in this big collection of people that make up a modern family (including the ex’s and their current relationships and all the insanity that brings) without any preparation. The dog and I (generally considered of normal intelligence if not considered normal in personality) may stumble, but my sweet little spud kitty sails through with ease. He’s a champ. The rest of us just live in his world.

 

Turkey toes

Plus he does stuff like this. We call this particular position turkey toes. He will sit sniffing his toes for a while, and then spend a little longer sitting in the same position while blinking slowly.

 

 

Children = Crack Heads

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My proof (in no particular order until the last bit):

  1. A large crash and what sounded like paper ripping echoed through the house from the upstairs landing. I asked the child what was going on. No response. I asked with a little more heat. I got back “I’m not doing anything nothing happened I’m petting the cat that’s all no”. No punctuation was used when vocalizing it so I left it in its original format. The child was insulted when I physically checked on the very loud nothing no that happened. I couldn’t find anything broken or torn. I assume she opened a portal to another realm.
  2. A small barrel shaped puzzle (pictured in the main image for this post) is dismantled into many pieces and an effort was made to put it back together. There was great intensity and focus. There were discussions with herself about what piece went next. Midway through the very next sentence pieces were calmly placed pieces on the floor, a blanket was pulled around the shoulders like a cape, and the child paraded out of the room on tiptoes. “I think this might go…” and she marched off. Very much like a hummingbird switching flowers. She manages a regal march for one so young.
  3. When the father of the child said good morning before dawn what came back was (as close as I can recall…it happened quickly and it was not even 6 am) “The eye! The eye was big and did you I don’t know did you see the eye my eye what who I don’t know last night!” All of that was said in a gasping mildly angry voice. Father of the child (somehow less baffled than I) responded: “But it’s okay now, right?”. She gave a disgruntled sounding “yes” and rolled over. He wandered into the bathroom as if that was a normal encounter.
  4. We own a whistle type of squeaker thing loud enough to wake the dead. Neither of us knew that. We don’t know where it came from. We found out we owned it because at roughly 6 am the child cornered one of the cats and when the cat didn’t follow a red dot it couldn’t follow because the child blocked its ability to move the squeaker whistles shrill hideous noise was unleashed upon us at a staggering decibel. Aware that she was probably going to be scolded she looked at her father belligerently and yelled: “NOTHING HAPPENED”. The cat and I haven’t fully recovered.

 

Cat contemplates alcohol

Cat contemplates alcohol while recovering from insanely loud ear blast

 

  1. (This should be 5 but formatting is being a brat) The air conditioner controller thing decided to poop out of juice last night. I walked downstairs and found the temperature to be Arctic-esque. I am hot natured and it was absolutely freezing even to my internal thermostat. The batteries dying in the control apparently gave the air conditioner permission to never ever turn off. Ever. So I immediately got the unit shut down and started coffee while shivering. Tiny human walks in wearing her blanket cape and talks to herself about how cold it is. I ask if she wants cereal for breakfast and she nods yes and walks off. I get cereal assembled and wander out to find her sitting in the back room talking to herself quietly. I put the cereal down and ask if she wants a blanket. She mutters a reply too quiet for me to make out. I ask her to repeat herself. It sounds vaguely like “jacket”. I tell her I can go get a sweatshirt or jacket for her, or maybe some socks. She mutters what sounds like jacket again. I tell her I still can’t hear her. I get back “I HAVE A JACKET”. I blink. I ask her if she wants her jacket. “NO! I HAVE ALL I NEED!”  She has a really deep voice for such a small female thing. Kind of like that lord of the rings scene where Galadriel is tempted but refuses the ring.
  2. (Formatting is still bratty) Tiny human is playing a sonic the hedgehog video game out in the back room. I know exactly where she is because she is talking to herself and the game at the same time in various tones and with various mood swings. There are a lot of “WHAT THE HECK….WHAT…..WOW…..WHA….NO….YES….WHAT THE HECK”. This sort of stream of consciousness has been going on for at least 30 minutes straight. And now there are long, deep hooting noises punctuated by growls. She may be summoning a demon. I’m not going to go look. I need a ghost hunter. Or a priest.
  3. Update (formatting is the least of my worries): After a crash out in the back room she magically appeared behind the desk to my left (I can hear her but not see her). She’s whispering something quietly and creepily, like an incantation. If I’m never seen again make sure they put a decent picture up at my funeral (don’t let my mom use my graduation picture, I have 14 chins in that one). Good luck to us all.

Weebles learning the meaning of consent…

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Having been involved in animal rescue for most of my adult life there are a ridiculous number of animals in my life. I currently live with a dog, two cats, and a sorta cat. Everyone who knows me knows of the Weebster, but for those who don’t, I have a mentally handicapped cat. He has congenital hypothyroidism which is extremely rare in cats and we didn’t get the diagnosis in time to prevent significant mental impairment. Physically he has bounced back significantly, but he’s a bit “slow” mentally. Weebs has a good quality of life and is not in pain, so we get to muddle through life trying to figure out how to cope with an extremely unique cat.

 

Tiny baby weebles

Weebs gotcha day!

 

 

 

Bottle Fed Weebles

Learning how bottles work.

 

 

 

Hungry Weebs

Transitioning to solid foods with grace and style.

 

 

Blogging weebs

Starting to be mobile and look more like a cat and less like an Ewok.

Weebs was stuck in bottle-fed kitten status much longer than he should have been, so he didn’t become mobile and independent until I’d moved cross country for work.  Once mobile he only had my older dog for company. He never saw other animals and rarely saw other people for just over a year.

Chicklets

That is his normal expression. Not a result of catnip.

Now that we’ve come back to the east coast I have moved in with my friend boy. Friend boy was given many nicknames but the one that stuck was Mancandy. He already had two rescue cats who were unsure about my dog and absolutely hated my poor cat who doesn’t know how to cat.

Most cats communicate with their body language, vocalizations, and will use aggression tactics in many situations if boundaries are not respected. WBS (Wee Baby Seamus, Weebles, Weebs, etc) had never seen another cat much less interacted with one. He responds to stimuli in an extremely delayed fashion and is OCD. He doesn’t hear well so vocal cues are often completely ignored and if he does hear something he will respond several minutes later and often with the wrong response.

Amazed

We’ve only recently been able to let him mingle with the other cats. He took one look at Tsuki and fell in love. She took one look and wanted nothing to do with him. Weebs was not the least bit put off by her lack of affection. He follows her constantly. He gazes at her with a devotion bordering on obsession. Tsuki is his moon and the stars in his sky and he must be near her. He has been hissed at, growled at, smacked, rolled, and none of it has had any impact on his devotion. She was distracted by treats yesterday and he got to actually stand next to her without getting smacked down. He leaned over, sniffed like a total creep, and fluttered his eyes. Think silence of the lambs level disturbing. She finished her treats, noticed the lack of respect for her touch bubble, and let him have it.

 

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He so loves her. She’s so over it.

 

 

She figured out a while back that if she gets up on furniture it takes a while for him to find her. The above picture was him finding her after about 30 minutes of looking. His idea of searching for his beloved is wandering around talking to himself (cute little trilling noises), yelling for her (typical annoying loud cat ME-FREAKING-OW noises), spinning (it’s weird and he does it a lot), and making the same loop through our house repeatedly.

 

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Can I just touch near you?

 

Once found Tsuki tries to ignore him. But he just can’t stop himself! He must be closer. He annoys her to the point she starts talking trash as soon as he gets near. The Instagram account link on the sidebar has a video of her telling him off. And his completely baffled expression in response.

While the past 8 months have involved saving Weebles from the “big cats”, now my days involve saving the big cats from the cat who couldn’t figure out how to save himself when he got sucked into the couch cushions. No lie. Exhibit A:

 

Couch sucks

It’s cool. I’ll just lay here until I starve to death while you take pictures and laugh.

 

I hate that none of our animals want anything to do with him (the next animal that enters this house will do so under the requirement that they allow Weebs to stick his face in their mouth and smell them in an exceptionally creepy fashion whenever he wants), but in good news, he’s not smart enough to realize he’s the last kid picked for dodgeball. Happy Friday folks!

 

PS. If you are looking for a new best friend please consider rescue. There are so many really amazing animals just waiting for a chance. The rescue closest to my heart is Southern Cross Animal Rescue (SCAR) in Laurel MS. Another organization I’m incredibly fond of is The Humane Society of the White Mountains in Arizona. They do incredible work. Find your next best friend at a shelter instead of buying. You’ll save two lives and you will be part of the solution instead of the problem.

 

He doesn’t find this as funny as I do…

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Sleeping Mancandy is a jerkwad. He knows this, I know this, it is what it is. Yesterday I was pretty darn high on some sort of allergy concoction. After untold time staring into the distance my eyes dried out, my contacts revolted, and I decided sleep was a fine idea. I felt the bed move a bit and knew one of the cats had joined me, but I didn’t pay any attention before passing out. I woke up to notice a few things. Tsuki was my bed buddy, her snortles are really adorable, the dog also snores pretty darn cute, and something stunk like cat pee. Thankfully it wasn’t me. Unfortunately, it was Tsuki.

I would love to know how the cat ends up occasionally reeking of cat piss, but she’s not telling. My theory is that another cat pees on her face in a dominance thing. Mancandy thinks she’s just gross and rolls in it. Either way, it is her head that stinks. Not her backend (in case anyone thinks I’m just too stupid to notice the cat has a urinary tract infection).

I stripped the sheets and my comforter (of course she decided to lay on my blanket) and put them out to wash after I was through washing clothes. I went downstairs to do stuff and promptly forgot about the clothes in the wash much less the stinky bed stuff. When we made our way upstairs to get ready for bed last night, I realized I didn’t have a blanket. I had clean sheets that I had handily not bothered to fold and put away from the last time I did laundry, so I just popped those on and figured I’d share Mancandy’s blanket for one night.

Yes, we have separate blankets. Yes, I’d forgotten why we’d even started that. We started it because he’s a jerkface who accuses me of being a jerkface. He steals all the dang covers and then rolls his happy, covered up burrito self over until I’m barely hanging onto the edge of the bed and breathes in my face while I teeter, shivering, on the edge of death. And while awake Mancandy is generally a pretty sweet guy, sleeping Mancandy is a complete jerkwad. If I tell him to move over he grunts at me. Sometimes he tells me to hush. Sometimes he will try to smother me. It’s a mystery wrapped in murderous intent.

But he swears I’m the one who steals the covers and he’s an innocent victim. I’m just letting him be wrong. But anywho, all of that to say, last night I spent most of the night chilly and angry. And when he yanked those covers back right before dawn I drifted off with a lot of Italian anger bottled up. And I may or may not have dreamed I shot him in his smug blanket stealing face with a shotgun so that I could tell him what a big jerk he was without interruption. And I may or may not have enjoyed yanking the closet door open where he was innocently dressing for work and smugly announcing I dreamed I shot him in the face and woke up in a good mood before slamming the closet door shut in his face around 5:30 am. And I may have been the only one amused. And I regret nothing.

When talking to me is equivalent to surviving a bear attack…and also serious topics like depression…

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Yesterday was a bad day. I was filling out job applications (that in and of itself feels like a full-time craptastic job) and for those with in-depth applications, I have to go into details about that time when everything fell apart. And while it’s been years and I should be over it, writing about it for hours upon hours tears the Band-Aid off the wound and anger and a bone-deep grief comes seeping out. And if we’re being honest, before I’d even started on that soul-sucking task, I’d been off.

I have seriously messed up dreams. Not as often as I used to, but if I take a nap or fall back asleep after Mancandy has gone to work there’s a pretty good bet I’ll have one. This morning’s dream involved driving my mother and grandmother around in a Prius (which I don’t own) and stopping for BBQ (at a place where an abandoned gas station sits currently) and watching a gas truck slowly and methodically crush a Great Pyrenees (didn’t realize that’s how that was spelled) beneath it. After the initial crush, he backed up and went back to completely smash the bits left intact after the first run. Other dogs milling around (the deep south firmly believes in having at least one-yard dog that they refuse to vet so that there are quickly multiple yard dogs) kept grabbing bits of bloody meat and running around while the truck threatened to hit them. I was trying to keep my passenger’s eyes covered and my hands over my mom’s ears so she wouldn’t hear as much. The truck was directly behind me and I couldn’t get out, we were forced to just sit and wait for the show to be over. It was gruesome and makes zero sense. But that’s a fairly stress-free one compared to the normal stuff my brain throws at me.

The one yesterday was much, much worse. By today I’ve had some distance and I can keep myself from replaying the worst of it over and over. Yesterday I felt raw and nauseous all day. Having to explain things I’d rather not discuss repeatedly all day didn’t help. By late afternoon I was ready to start breathing fire and crying (which is an odd combination but exactly what I felt like doing).

By the time we were sitting down to a late dinner I could tell Mancandy was walking on egg shells around me. My first instinct was to blame him. I mean, I hadn’t done anything. I should be the one on egg shells! I had this horrible stuff in my mind, I was sad, I was feeling super-duper fat, my skin was broken out even though I’m in my stupid thirties, I was pretty sure I was melting into a puddle of Italian grease despite a shower, the weather was hot and sticky and I hated it, I wanted to eat everything in the kitchen (even the stuff I don’t like) until I puked and then go eat some more, and I was pretty sure I was a complete and utter failure and he’d probably notice that and cheat on me and it would be horribly painful so I should probably just plan to leave anyway…

And then the epiphany hit. I’m PMSing! The dream and the applications would normally have upset me, but they wouldn’t have pushed me so far. This surge of instability flowing through my veins would pass. I’d be fine. And somehow, just having that realization calmed me.

I blurted out, “Oh thank all the little brown potatoes, there’s a reason I’m going crazy!”

He looked like he was trying to avoid a bear attack by being very still. “I didn’t think you were going crazy.” He was using a very soothing voice and not moving. This annoyed me but I frantically shoved the crazy back down.

“I’m PMSing!” My tone was too bright and I was basically yelling it at him in my excitement. He tends to think of females as creatures who don’t have gas or bowel movements, so any discussions of menstruation tend to make him go pale and find an excuse to run away.

He nodded as if we were discussing strange weather. “Oh. Um. Good?”

I tried to save the situation. “I am just saying when you feel crazy all day you start to think maybe you are crazy but now that I know there’s a reason I’ve felt crazy I feel less crazy! It’s a good thing!”

He kept nodding. I took pity on us both and hushed.

My mentally handicapped cat decided that was the best moment to flop down on his back in the middle of the room and yowl/smack at the fan 12 feet above him. We both focused on that and he looked like a man who escaped a death sentence. It made me want to chew on his face and cry and then I had an intense craving for beef jerky and I thought going to bed might save us all from…well…me.

This morning, after waking up from a nap I only took because he gave me some sort of allergy medicine that sucked all the life out of me and made me a zombie, I started to straighten things up and get laundry/dishes going. I am much more centered today, despite the very detailed dream. I realized I am so incredibly lucky. I felt such relief when I realized the “crazy” was going to pass. It actually felt as if a cool, clean sensation rushing over my overheated brain. There was a reason I felt that way. I was not losing myself; I just had to hold on until my hormones quit being assholes.

One of the pieces I’ve written and erased many times is about being surrounded by people with various degrees/types of mental illness and the difficulties/gifts that imparts. I’ve not found a way to be both honest and unobtrusive (I’m learning so much, I really thought that word should be “unintrusive” but spellcheck swears it’s unobtrusive…) to family and friends, so I’ve yet to be able to write it.

While I can’t write that piece, I can say that I’ve been given just a tiny taste of knowing I’m being unreasonable and paranoid and depressed but unable to stop. How dark that must be for someone who doesn’t get a break from it. It’s a horrid feeling, to feel so angry and worthless and disgusting. And I’m quite sure I didn’t feel a fraction of what those with severe conditions face. And they don’t get the luxury of feeling that way for a day and then getting a break the rest of the month. I imagine for many it’s a constant. I’m grateful I don’t have that type of imbalance. I can barely hold it together for a few hours. I wanted to eat the man’s face off!

In all seriousness, if that were a constant state I could understand suicide being a valid option. That small taste of despair and sadness and hopelessness, just a little taste, was quite enough. My heart breaks for those who only feel that. And it infuriates me that our options for those with mental illness are absolutely inadequate. Without good insurance, there’s very little quality care available that’s also affordable. Even with good insurance, some plans do not cover much in the way of therapy. They’d much rather GP’s prescribe drugs than pay for an individual to go to therapy, and in a crisis that’s not always enough. And if you have good insurance and are able to access therapy with a therapist you trust, many people cannot afford for their family and friends to also go to therapy. Since there are few options for those of us who face handling a situation we are woefully unprepared and/or untrained to handle, many are unable to cope.

I am the first to admit I have struggled. Loving someone whole-heartedly does not mean there are not times you feel absolutely hatred, rage, fear, and sorrow when they behave in ways you cannot understand. The stigma associated with these conditions only serves to further isolate those who need support the most.

I’ve got no solutions to any of it. I try to make the right choices and say the right things, but I’m sure I fail quite often. And I’m going to try to remind myself of this perspective on things when those I love act out in their anger and grief. When emotions whose depth I can’t truly understand sweep family and friends away into a place I can’t go, I will do my best to still be there when they come up for air. I’ll try to have more patience, and take things less personally. Because I’m quite sure at some point about a month from now I’ll look at people around me with pure hatred because they breathe too freaking loud, or he’ll pick up the wrong texture of toilet paper, or a commercial will make me sad and I’ll be suddenly enraged at the fact I’m crying and I’ll have to try to have perspective through emotions so strong they have personalities all their own.

It’s easy to laugh at my own ridiculousness when my hormones decide my inner landscape is boring, but having that constant internal chaos must be one of the most difficult things to survive. For anyone reading who struggles against the inside of their own mind, keep struggling. It’s not fair to ask it, but the more you speak up about the struggles, the more we normalize mental illness rather than try to hide it, the more things change. Let’s make it completely normal and accepted to talk about how bad things get so that hopefully we come up with better ways to make help accessible and meaningful for everyone.