Archive for November, 2016

Post #160 – About The Expiration Date and the End of the Beehive Hairdo

Posted in Family, family battles, family drama, grandmothers, humor, life, memoir, Motherhood, narrative memoir, nonfiction, people, relationships, true stories, uncategoried, work, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 29, 2016 by tenaciousbitch

Knowing that each of us has an expiration date does not make it any easier when we’re told that the end is near for a family member or a friend – even if that person is 99 years old. I got that phone call earlier today from a hospice nurse about my Grandmother. She hasn’t been able to eat more than a bite or 2 of food at a time, and she’s been sleeping pretty much since Thanksgiving.

And the nurse said she was too weak to speak to me even if she brought Nana the phone. That’s when I broke down because anyone who knows Nana – knows that the only thing in this universe that would stop her from talking would be if the Grim Reaper himself was hovering about her bed.And the nurse kept using the word “declining”, which I tend to think of as a hospice buzz word synonymous with dying. I remember hearing that term a few days before my mother passed away.

I was absolutely miserable when Nana lived with us for two very long years, i.e. check out Post #1 about what she said to me when my mother was terminally ill @ https://wordpress.com/stats/insights/tenaciousbitch.com https://wordpress.com/stats/insights/tenaciousbitch.com

And/or this post about Nana’s back-handed racisim @ https://wordpress.com/stats/insights/tenaciousbitch.com.  However, I found myself sobbing on the way to the grocery store where I went to fax some paperwork to hospice in order to secure her care for however long she has left.

Ten minutes, I was told for the confirmation that the fax went through to Vitas Hospice’s office. Ten. Long. Minutes trying not to start crying again in front of total strangers. And then, a miracle happened. I decided I’d treat myself to my favorite dessert, vanilla ice cream and chocolate syrup. On my way to the beloved freezer holding my creamy comfort in a 1/2 gallon box, I realized that God knew how sad I would be at this moment, and a miracle occurred that caused me to break into a wide smile despite my melancholy mood…

ALL OF MY FAVORITE ICE CREAM TREATS WERE ON SALE…:) november-29-2016-019   And the Skinny Cow was buy one get one FREE! I don’t think that’s every happened that I can recall. 

So, despite the fact that I started bawling again in my car on the way home, I realized life really is about the little things. The ice cream miracle. The fact that my husband does the dishes without me asking him to do so as well as watching the hilarious antics of my cats, one of whom has learned to lock herself in the bathroom when she wants some downtime from the other 2 cats (funny story for another day).

And last but not least, the incredible euphoria I experience every single time I go to the beach (any beach, Florida, California, New Jersey, doesn’t matter), and I sit staring at the vast expanse of water roaring to and fro in front of me. There’s nothing in this world that I enjoy more (as far as leisure activities, that is) than lying on the beach on a hot and sunny day…except maybe lying on the beach with a good book.

And I wondered if any of those wonderful moments that Nana has experienced over her nearly 100 years were ruminating through her mind as she drifts away from this world. I hope so. And I decided that I was going to remember Nana as the crazy redheaded woman who spoiled me rotten every time we came to visit…who so loved the hairstyle shown in the photo below…which I never really understood but Nana never really understood my love of science fiction and zombie movies either…:)nana-demonstrating-shoes That said, even though she and I are very different in a lot of ways, she taught me a very valuable life lesson – just by the way she lived her life. And I’m sure she doesn’t even realize what I’ve gleaned from her in this respect.

In that, the most important ingredient to happiness is to be true to yourself. And it’s okay if you’re not like other women, or other people in general. Nana was the FIRST woman in her family and among her friends who worked after she got married.

A year or so after my mother was born, Nana took a job at the company store. My mother grew up in the coal fields of West Virginia. And Nana got to know the manager of the company store at church, and he mentioned that he needed a part-time clerk. My grandmother eagerly took the job, not because she needed the money, but because she WANTED to work. And she eventually became the manager of the store.

She wasn’t happy sitting around the house all day cleaning and changing diapers. And this was in 1936! Such just wasn’t done, but Nana did it! She didn’t care what other people thought about it either. My grandfather was shocked and confused, but he knew Nana well enough to know that it didn’t do any good to argue with her or to try to dissuade her from whatever she wanted. She was going to do it anyway. And she worked until she was 78 years old. She retired 3 times before she finally decided it was time to give work a rest.

I hope that I’m able to see Nana again before she’s ushered from this world.  When taking care of Nana got to be too much, and she needed full-time care, she didn’t want to be in a nursing home here in Ohio where I live because she hates the weather here. She requested to move back down South where she’d lived for more than 50 years.

So, we put her in a nursing home about 5 miles from the house where she had lived from 1976 until she moved in with me and my husband in 2011. And they’ve taken very good care of her though they refer to her as “the Diva”, which is more than appropriate because I’ve never encountered anyone more spoiled than she is, God Bless Her…:) And there are quite a few posts herein that will more than quantify that nickname.

And so with that, I will say adieu so that I can make travel plans to see the crazy redhead one more time before her lights go out in Georgia for the last time.

Over and out from CASA DE CRAZY…

~TenaciousBitch and her band of truth-spouting hippies

Post #159 -His Name is Jar-Jar the Terrible

Posted in blogging, BOOKS, comedy, Family, humor, life, marriage, nonfiction, politics, relationships, true stories, uncategoried, writing, zombies with tags , , , , , , , , on November 10, 2016 by tenaciousbitch

Had trouble sleeping last night. Nothing new to read, and I couldn’t turn on the TV for fear that my horrible recurring nightmare had come true. Jar-Jar Binks, aka Jar-Jar the Terrible, just bought himself the Presidency. You know Jar-Jar, the Narcissist with the bad Comb-Over? Holy shit. It wasn’t a dream? There isn’t enough Merlot to stomach the headlines in the morning. Sigh. Perhaps, some strychnine or Drano with a side of cyanide will suffice instead. Glug. Glug.

All joking aside, my only solace in terms of coping with the deplorable and mind-boggling election of Jar-Jar the Terrible is that Hillary Rodham Clinton finally shattered a glass ceiling that is not only 240 years thick, but heretofore thought to be impenetrable by ANY woman, triumphing despite all odds to become the first woman nominated by the democratic party to run for President of the United States. Such is not only an historic event but an event unseen in a high percentage of the industrialized world as is common knowledge that there are very few heads of state who are female on this rock we call earth.

 

And despite Senator Clinton’s devastating loss, she’s a commendable example of what women can achieve because now, we finally have NO door that is closed to us despite whatever she may or may not have done with her Godforsaken emails and despite whatever political shenanigans she may or may not have committed as alleged by Jar-Jar’s smear campaign and by various coverage of the media.

The thing is, regardless of whether you like her or not, she’s got a helluva more experience than Donald Trump because we all know who really ran the White House back in the day when Bill was traipsing about the Hallowed Halls of our nation’s capital chasing after interns. And while many might have seen Hillary’s current plan for the country as more of the same, I saw it as a familiar journey with goals that are in alignment with what the people need and what the people want. Jobs. Prosperity. Equal Rights. More research and development to reduce our carbon footprint. A makeover of the disaster known as Obamacare. The end of legal bigotry and immigration reform, not the building of a wall to keep out “those People”.

I daresay our founding forefathers are grumbling and shouting from their graves in protest and frustration knowing a man has just been elected to the highest office in the land, and by his own words would like nothing more than to shatter the constitution and to “make this country great again” by refusing the matriculation of the poor, the hungry, the disenfranchised, the flat-chested (perhaps? :)) and to bar those whose religion or ethnicity offends Jar-Jar’s narrow-minded sensibilities, thereby decimating the principles this country was built upon.

However, I can’t help but hope that should that ludicrous boundary be built, that someone pushes Trump over his wall into a pit of Mexican Zombie Rapists.

Okay, maybe not. Sorry, I had to intervene with a little levity in order to survive the mere idea that the Donald, Jar-Jar the Terrible, is really going to be running this country in 10 short weeks. I’m ashamed and embarrassed to call myself an American with him at the helm, and I’m terrified that in 2021, I won’t recognize the country to which I was born.

Then, there’s Hillary Rodham Clinton, like Rosa Parks, who also suffered at the hands of ignorance and injustice, both of whom paved the way for more changes to come. While Mrs. Clinton, of course, hasn’t been wrongly imprisoned, I believe she was wrongly convicted in the court of public opinion, which I’m sure hurt her elect-ability immensely. So, maybe, Senator Clinton hasn’t done anything as significant as Rosa Parks’ defiance on that historic bus ride during the infancy of the Civil Rights Movement, but Senator Clinton had the potential to do so, in my opinion, and crossing over into the No-Man’s Land of Running for President, I believe she took her first step.

That said, I will tell my grandchildren that though Hillary Clinton lost, she won a huge victory for just being in the race. And, unfortunately, all too often adults are just like children, they have to learn the hard way what’s best for themselves and for their country and that I have faith that after 4 years of Mr. Trump, the country will be begging Hillary to run again, and I pray she will do so!! If not, she’s created a wide berth for another woman to walk in her shoes in 2021.

However, whatever happens, I cannot believe Trump will be elected twice. If so, I’ll be boarding a plane for Ecuador or some other distant and sunnier shore because I can’t bear the thought of Trump calling himself President again.

And regardless of what happens in the future, I feel proud and honored that I took part in an historical event when I voted for the first female candidate for President in the history of our great nation. And I honestly believe that Jar-Jar the Terrible will only be a sad footnote in the historical record of the U.S. like that of John Wilkes-Booth, known pretty known only as the man who killed a great leader who changed the lives of millions with one signature on the Emancipation Proclamation. In the same but slightly different vein, though Jar-Jar might’ve killed Hillary’s dream to be our Commander and Chief in 2017, I can’t believe that this electoral defeat has dashed her aspirations permanently. She’s too stubborn and too ambitious for that.

Therefore, I don’t believe this electoral debacle will be the last mention of First Lady, Secretary of State, and Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton and for that I am also hopeful and eternally grateful for what Hillary has done thus far and feel indebted to her in doing what no woman has ever done before. Beat several men at what has traditionally been a man’s game. Now get back on the horse Hillary and figure out how to crush Jar-Jar the next time around! 🙂