Christmas By Myself This Year

I am ready to crawl into the fetal position and be done with this nightmare. What was the movie?The Nightmare Before Christmas? Never saw the flick, but who cares? Who gives a flying fazuck? It’s Christmas time, the halls are decked, the tree is done, my shopping almost complete. Wake me up when it’s time to take a long Winter’s nap; put a fork in my for crying out loud-I’m DONE.

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As a matter of fact, this Facebook post just about sums it up right now. All I want for Christmas is to have my husband and critters healthy and safe. That’s it, that’s my list. But the unseen forces of this world have a different idea-they want me a withered nub of nothing, so I have news for them.

STEP OFF!!!

Last Sunday, exhausted from a weekend of socializing, I drug my weary ass cheeks up the concrete stairs-I had a drink in one hand and a purse in the other. I was also carrying my dog’s collection of toys; left like little bodies, littering the yard. And so it was that I had no hands to break my fall when the inevitable happened. I tripped, my forehead breaking my fall.

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Not very pretty, but after an OK from the Emergency Room doctor, I went home-thinking, this won’t be so bad. I’ve suffered worse, believe me. But a week later? I still feel nauseous and the headaches are not so pleasant. But none of this matters, it truly doesn’t. Last night, God put everything in perspective for me. I was spent from crying all morning; I miss my parents at this time of year-Christmas was truly special at our home. I know what the reason for the season is-I just want a modicum of peace to fill my heart and soul.

I turned the music up (Charlie Brown Christmas, my favorite holiday tune) and Jess and I began to dance. Jubilant for over a minute, the smile was wiped from my face when I bent down to hug the dog-I found a small lump on his chest. The room began to spin, my heart was beating erratically, this can’t be happening, NO, no, no, no. My husband was in the shower; I yelled up to him, told him the grim news.

I thought a word of comfort, solace…maybe even hope. What I received instead? Name calling, of the you ruined my Christmas variety. It was if he thought I was purposefully looking for bad news: Lord have mercy! He had put up the Christmas lights, cut us a tree, dealt with my weeping just hours before.

He gave me the silent treatment. I gathered my things and headed for bed. 5:30 folks. I went to bed at 5:30 p.m. I awoke to the piercing pain in my heart. I remembered the lump. My husband slammed the door as he left the house, as I was none to eager to hear his apology. Actions speak louder than words, you know.

I phoned the vet, made an appointment first thing. My mood was as low as low could be; until I stopped in at Walmart for a few things. I asked a woman for help finding the cat nip, and the look on her face told me two things: I forgot to comb my hair, and I was now the freak at Wally World. I stopped to take a perusal of my appearance-sweet Jesus, the tattered clothing, combined with a shiner reminiscent of Muhammed Ali? Not good. I didn’t care, I was on a mission to be at the vet on time. I paid for my things and drove to the animal hospital.

To my surprise, Dwain stood at the door.

“What are you doing here?,” I mumbled.

Thirty minutes later, with a diagnoses of a fatty tumor, I took my dog for a hike. I thanked Abba with all I had in me. And when we returned? Tootsie went to comfort his friend.

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We must remember what is truly important at this time of year; and that is our family, friends and treasured children; whether animal or human. Be grateful for the small things, and let God take care of the rest.

Secret Agent Man

I had no choice, really. The local bent and dent did not have my Nicorette gum, and I NEED my Nicorette gum….I actually (not proud of this)left my cart in the store and walked out in disgust. It drives me bonkers when a store carries something religiously, then, for no apparent reason whatsoever, pulls it from the shelves. If I was irritated at BB’s, I was going to commit Hare Kari up the road.

I always use the garden entrance. Always. Wally World is located in Lebanon, the city-and let’s just say I don’t like leaving my golden retriever in a jeep, let alone a Wrangler-they could just unzip the damn thing. So, the adventure begins when the garden entrance doors are not only shut, but blocked by carts, as if for extra measure. So, not closed. But CLOSED. I begin a conversation with the elderly woman behind me, we groan and moan about the newest fresh hell at the big W, blissfully unaware that we were headed for trouble, and with a capital T.

So, I finish in a record ten minutes: that included buying dog treats, checking out the newest bedware, (hideous) stressing over which storage containers were better, buying two new shades of nail polish, and, thankfully-picking up my nicotine gum. 🙂 I live almost thirty minutes from town, so it royally pisses me off when I forget the gum, and don’t notice until I am in my home, relaxing. I was on a roll and I began to feel something akin to hope burgeoning in my heart. Could it be that I was making too much of this love/hate relationship with a chain store? And then, in horror flick slo-mo, I began to notice that there were no aisles open for checkout. I actually had one cashier mumble that she was closed, after I began placing my items on the conveyor belt.

I ended up in the longest grocery line I have witnessed in my entire fifty-six years on planet earth. Out of 25 lines, only three were open. A very tall man, good looking and fit, wearing sunglasses walked up to me.

“Are you fucking kidding me???,” he asked, a wry smile spreading across his oh so lovely mug. He moved on to the next aisle, with his friend, their cart ominously full of products in bulk (paper towels soap)-so much so that the woman behind me commented:

“I bet you they’re a rescue mission, or maybe even a church group.” Now, this is how my mind worked at that moment: “Yeah, SURE, a rescue mission, that dude looks like secret service-or a body guard.” I chastised myself for my cynicism. Just because I don’t trust anyone, doesn’t mean there are no good people out there. What is wrong with me? How did I become so jaded?

So, I nod at the woman in the pink Elmer Fud hat, check out and run to my pooch, Jesse. In just moments we are on the road, to our hiking trails….Jesse showing his disapproval that I spent an entire hour
away from him (I think he thinks I go into this building and play with all of the other dogs in the state, throwing them bony treats and petting the crud out of them) Dogs…….paranoid creatures are goldens.

So, I pull on to Route 422, make a left and head towards Middlecreek. As I pass the Tasty Freeze I see them. The two men I had seen at Walmart, with cart overflowing. The secret agent man was carrying the paper towels.

Into the Endzone, where naked women pole dance and the Mad Dog flows like water…..