31 12 2009

Today is the last day of 2009. Back in my childhood, the thought of the year 2010 conjured up for me visions of cars that could fly and robots that did housework.  In retrospect, apparently The Jetsons had a lot of influence over me.

So. Like many people, as the new year dawns, I think about what I can change about myself. I deeply believe in becoming a better person in my own spirit and have gone through many mind-opening revelations about my own true self in the past several years. It is always an uphill climb. But so worth it. I think I have become more aware, more empathetic, more kind, more loving, more open.

However. I still curse like a motherf*cking, drunken-*ss, sh*t-kicking redneck.

It was easier to quit smoking than to quit cursing. Really.

See, when you smash your finger in a drawer, or drop a full plate of food on your clean floor, or discover you shrunk your new sweater in the wash, nothing… and I mean nothing sums that feeling up better than a good ol’ fashioned expletion of “MOTHERFUCK!!!!!!” Sometimes, I throw in a “Jesus H. Tapdancing Christ” or perhaps a PG 13 “Goddamnit”. Smatterings of “Shit” and “Cock knocker” are like a pressure release valves on my temper. I have even been known to use the dreaded C word.

For a while there, I tried using the phrase “For five cents” to alleviate any frustrations I had. Soon, like a junkie, that was no longer good enough for me, and I doctored it to be “For five fucking cents”. Much like the saying “Shut the front door!” to offset the overuse of swearing became “Shut the front fucking door!”, which, in my opinion has such an exquisite roll off the tongue.

I have sworn in front of my children. More than once.

I am making small baby-step gains in this though. Last week, I did something stupid that normally would merit an extravagant torrent of cussing. Instead I let forth a “FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUDGE” at the top of my lungs. My daughter later told me she was proud that I didn’t say the F word. Truthfully, saying fudge just doesn’t feel the same…. But as I look closely at my self, I know that this terrible and horrible habit of mine needs to be fixed.

So, 2010 is the year I try to not swear. Or not swear as much. And especially not swear in front of my kids anymore.

Wish me luck, for fuck’s sake.

A Warm and Fuzzy Story for you all.

18 12 2009

Tuesday morning, I was in the midst of making gingerbread men (and women… Equal opportunity baker right here…) when I got a phone call.

It was a fellow that lives up and around the corner from my place.

Turns out this guy likes to collect all the stray cats in our neighborhood. And for the last 8 months, he has had a female tortoiseshell cat living in his shed. I guess he assumed that she didn’t belong to anyone, and was content to let her live there until his other cat decided she hated this new cat’s guts and they would fight constantly. So, he called in to the SPCA and got them to track the tattoo in her ear. They gave him our number.

This cat was my daughter’s kitty, which she got for her 6th birthday… Named Bamboo by the SPCA, we kept her name and brought her home to live with us. My daughter adored this cat. In April of this year, she went missing. After looking high and low for her, we came to the sad conclusion that she had probably died… There are many coyotes here, which, sadly, many cats have succumbed to….

(Humble confession: I wasn’t that sad…. I was, quite frankly, tired of cat turds in my garden and dead birdies on my porch…)

Months went by, and Elisabeth grieved for her baby and was recently starting to speak of her cat in affectionate terms, remembering her antics and sweetness in a healed sort of way.

But lo and behold, we were the subjects of a mini-miracle of sorts.

The neighbor brought Bamboo back to my place and she was instantly at home.

When the kids got home from school that afternoon, I made them sit on the couch and close their eyes. I had Bamboo in my arms when I told them to open their eyes to see the surprise.

Their reactions? Still making me cry…. They both shrieked and jumped up, hysterical, much to the cat’s dismay… And then, my daughter picked her kitty up, hugged her close and in a tear-filled voice said “Oh, Bamboo… I love you so much…” Her smile lit up her face as she snuggled that cat.

That right there? Well, that made me the happiest Mommy in the world.