Talking comes by nature, silence by wisdom. Geredt kumt fun natur, shtilkayt durkh khkhmh.
A bei gezunt. Go in good health.
Talking comes by nature, silence by wisdom. Geredt kumt fun natur, shtilkayt durkh khkhmh.
A bei gezunt. Go in good health.
Anyone who regularly reads this space knows about Gatsby, our stunning rescue dog we adopted. He immediately filled our hearts with furry, snuggly, puppy love. Gatsby, he is a special being. While we rescued him, he certainly recaptured our ‘dog-loving’ hearts right back. He is our little boychik (sweet boy) who has brought us all such nachas (pride and gratification, usually through one’s kinder (children)) and expanded our family in a very healthy way.
He is the most amazing dog for us all… and, pretty early on, we realized our zeiseh punim (sweet faced) man suffered from terrible bouts of anxiety and tsuris (grief, heartache). He is a neurotic ‘Vincent van Gogh – Woody Allen – Adele’ wrapped inside (in our case) women’s best friend. His early months on the planet had left him traumatized – and with no canine fidget spinners in sight, we experienced some tough behaviors together. Horrible separation anxiety, excessive chewing, leash reactiveness at the sight of any dog or cat, over-zealous obsession (OCD) with squirrels, birds, noises, and lights in the parking lot… you name it, and he felt it! He was farshluggineh (shaken, mixed up) and a bit, well, meshuggeneh (crazy).
We tried training, and this boy, our four legged smarty pants, could sit, give a paw, high five and lie down (My Mrs., she homeschooled him)! We added in rescue remedy, a tight fitting ThunderShirt, DAP (dog appeasing pheromones), calming canine music, exhaustive walks – and bubkes (nothing), no change in our meshuggeneh (crazy) mutt.
Our therapy dog, he needs therapy. You all already know I’m a mess, ergo, I blog for catharsis! Now my boy, we need to help him! He is proof that stress and anxiety knows no discrimination: rich, poor, man, woman, old, young, sick, healthy, feline or canine!
I was beginning to think our little man of the house needed a little chemistry to help him along. All he wants to do is please us, yet he is plagued with such shpilkes (anxiety). Oy vey!
My Mrs., she took him to the vet to talk about this new wrinkle in his care. At first, they were a bit skeptical. Then they witnessed him going
batshit bonkers over a painting of a dog on the wall. Next, it became difficult to take blood – his fur was flying at the thought of being at the vet’s office. He was shrekn (terrorized with fear) and the doc, she saw what we knew. She put a muzzle on my poor boychik’s face and carried on with the exam. We left with some Trazadone to calm him and a prescription for Prozac.
The Trazadone worked wonders. He would calm, without being at all lethargic. We needed this while the Prozac built up in his system. About a month in, he is doing much better. He still prefers we stay together (as do we) and never leave him behind. He still barks outside, but he is not inconsolable. We can deflect behaviors. Riding in the car is greatly improved.
I share this with you all because, much like 2-legged people, sometimes our 4-legged friends need a little help. I did some research and found that about 30% of dogs exhibit some form of canine anxiety. Like any of my other kinder, we will do whatever it takes to take care of him. Our CVS fills the prescription with a pseudo-affordable generic. When his Rx is ready, they call out, “Gatsby!” Medication is not always the answer, but in our case, we are grateful for such a solution.
Not everyone the dogs bark at is a thief. Nit yederer oif vemen hunt bilen iz a ganev.
Who finds a faithful friend, finds a treasure. Vas finds a gatray fraynd, finds a autsr.
We have found a treasure indeed!
Cake, ice cream, pizza, and mac-and-cheese has been the menu of late. It’s been a birthday party bonanza around here, with my little party divas. I am one lucky momma getting to attend as well as escort my maidelehs (little, sweet girls). Such fun!
I think we played about 43 holes, sans any attempt at golfer know-how and etiquette. If it weren’t for cuteness, it could have been a real problem.
If you’re going to do something wrong, enjoy it. Az me est chazzer, zol rinnen fun bord.
Enjoy all! L’chaim. (To life!)
The summer sizzle, she has started! When I saw the temps hit 101, oy vey iz mir (oh em gee), I had to document it for you all to see. Me, I like the heat. You will not get a complaint from me from heat and humidity… cold, that’s another story altogether. And in the heat, we get a bissel meshugeneh ( a little bit crazy). It’s hard to believe the things that have come from my mouth, in these short, early days of summer.
She (and by she, I mean me) should go crazy and run around through the streets. Zi shoudl geyn mshuge aun loyfn arum dirk di gasn.
The greatest mistake is fearing to make one. Di greste grayz iz mura tsu makhn eyn.
This is what summer is all about.
I came home from work, and the pain in my neck was excruciating. On a scale of 1 – 10, it was a 46 (that should only be my age). Ugh! My shana maidelehs (sweet little girls) were so excited to see me; Gatsby, my furry boychik, was jumping and barking at my feet. My Mrs., she could see the pain in my eyes and she gently kissed me on the check. Heroes welcome for certain.
Apparently, a note was left at the front door entrance to our apartment building to my attention. Big, she was very excited to tell me all about it. Someone found something of mine in the parking lot… call a phone number and they will give it to me. I had no idea what that could be and I had no intention of finding out immediately due to my ‘pain in the neck‘ neck pain. My family, they went out to a birthday party for Little’s friend — I wanted to go, but without full body cooperation, I listened to the siren song of the sofa calling my name. Gatsby and I snuggled in tightly, arranging my head just so, and I asked ‘Alexa’ to play Rachel Maddow as I closed my eyes.
A little bit later, I heard a ping on my phone, so I took a look-see. I noticed a few notes in my Facebook messenger. Delving a little deeper, there was yet another note for me from a person I did not know. It was brilliant! Take a look at this:
Someone found my wallet, and wanted to return it to me! All of the sudden, I remembered Big’s excitement and put 2+2 together… I lost my wallet.
Wait, I lost my wallet? I never lose my wallet? Nu? When did this happen? Where? How? Obviously in the parking lot…
My penchant for the penny-wise is so strong, I only reach cash/card if I really have to make a purchase. I met a friend for coffee today, but that’s a luxury, so no wallet. I didn’t even know I lost it! This could have easily been disastrous!
I dialed up my very kind neighbor right away. She was so sweet and caring. She said she was eagerly waiting to hear from me and she hoped I wasn’t going crazy looking for this missing wallet… Wait, I lost my wallet? I never lose my wallet? She was at work, but her hubby was home and would be happy to deliver my missing property. I insisted that I go to him – It was the least I could do! Gatsby and I ventured across the parking lot. As we made our way, it dawned on me that the previous day, me and this boychik, we walked to the local coop for some dog food and treats. My wallet must have fallen out of my pocket on the way home… I lost my wallet?
I pressed D9 and the most delightful man answered, in a British accent too! He buzzed me in the doorway and came straight away, with my red wallet in hand. As he handed it to me, he reached out his hand and said, “My name is Jim.” I happily took his hand in mine and smiled, gushing gratitude! He bent down and played with Gatsby. These two people who found my wallet, Kristy, and Jim, they are mensches (good people filled with honesty and integrity). And, they like my Gatsby. Dog people are good people! ❤
Today, in a world filled with chaos, hate, divisiveness, terror… I experienced the ultimate in human kindness. I saw proof that people, all people, can choose kindness.
A little bit of light pushes away a lot of darkness. A kleyn bissel fun likht pushiz a vek a plats fun finsternish.
Kristy and Jim, thank you for my light.
I lost my wallet… My Mrs., Liz, Biz, Nona — it’s official. I’m a true part of this family! Expect a lost/stolen iPhone next, and, wait, where did my keys go? Oy vey. (OMG.)
Shalom, Ahava, and Simcha. Peace, Love, and Joy. May you all find some kindness today and every day!
June. Summer. Kids running free and the smell of chlorine. PRIDE month is happening all over the globe. Nu? Many of you must be just a bissel ( a little bit) interested in the gay agenda? Come, sit. Let me tell you a story about a yearning to fight inequality in the form of a rainbow.
Way back in June of 1970 (
that is effing 47 years ago people), the very first Pride Parade took place in New York City (my Little, she calls it, ‘You Nork’) to honor the Stonewall Riots of 1969. This event clearly marked the beginning of the long, hard struggle known as the LGBTQ civil rights movement in the US. One single pride parade has bravely morphed and grown into festivals, parties, galas (this group, we know a little something about throwing parties!) and month-long celebrations all over the US and around the world. Why you ask? There is something so very freeing in leaving the cloak of invisibility behind. To celebrate lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgendered, and queer culture, family, and, well PRIDE! You see my friends, this is one group that knows how important it is to rejoice in everyone’s unique and special differences. Insert glitter here!
In 1997, a short couple of decades ago, Ellen DeGeneres made television history by having her character, come out as a lesbian on TV. In pure Ellen-comedic-fashion, she accidentally announced over the loudspeaker at the airport to her love interest, played by (straight) Laura Dern, “I’m gay.” Nobody had ever done this before on TV. Hate mail, death threats and at least one bomb threat would happen before the show titled, “The Puppy Episode,” aired. This title had a hidden meaning — everyone knows a puppy gets bigger. And everyone on this show knew this was an issue that would also grow. “The Puppy Episode” ranked #35 in the top watched television episodes of all time and won an Emmy. What followed was quite the ruckus in tv land. Major advertisers bowed out, and the show was canceled shortly thereafter. Her career was in turmoil for several long years. But our Ellen, she persevered. Her brave and historic outing, of both her character and herself, eventually made it a lot more ‘okay’ for the sweet, funny girl next store to also be gay. Ellen, you are my hero!
Meanwhile, mitten drinnen (in the middle) of all of this gay history and lots of tsuris (trouble) and violence, a long time ago (in 1963), two nice Yiddisheh young women met (Edie Windsor and Thea Spyer) and fell in love. After a long and beautiful 40+ year engagement, loving each other in sickness (Thea bravely battled MS) and in health, Edie and Thea went to Canada to tie the knot in 2007. It was legal there. In 2008, living in New York (You Nork) and in their 70’s, they fought to be legally recognized as a married couple and won. They spent their last two years together as a happily married couple. Sadly, in 2009, Thea died, leaving her entire estate to Edie, as spouses often do… Edie rightfully claimed the federal estate tax exemption for surviving spouses, and the IRS said, NOPE. You see, under Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the word ‘spouse’ is defined as a union between a man and a woman. Opposite-sex partners only need apply. Same-sex married couples were excluded from the 1500+ laws and benefits that straight married couples get automatically. Edie had no choice but to fork over more than $360,000.00 in estate taxes. By 2010, Edie, no stranger to fighting injustice, sued the federal government under DOMA for a full refund. Her case rose to the highest court in the land, and in 2013, the 9 Supremes heard The United States v. Windsor. On June 26, 2013, in a landmark 5-4 decision, the court ruled in favor of Edie, saying that DOMA was unconstitutional. Edie, petite, near deaf and a feisty 70-something, brought respect, dignity, and protection under the law to the LGBTQ community. Edie, you too are my hero!
Picking up right where Edie left off, another major case made its way to the nine robed judges. Enter Obergefell v. Hodges, representing 4 same-sex couples. Not asking for a special new law or even special protection under the law, they challenged the 14th Amendment and simply asked to have the equal right to enter knowingly in the fundamental right to marry, just like any other straight couple in love. On June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court passed Marriage Equality for all in the US. In a 5-4 victory, equality won. Same-sex marriage was now legal in all of these United States. We danced and sang and kissed and declared a jubilant victory over this newfound constitutional right. President Obama said, live from the Rose Garden, “Today, we can say, in no uncertain terms, that our union is a little more perfect.” He went on to say that this, “affirms what millions of Americans already believe in their hearts: When all Americans are treated as equal, we are all more free.” HEROES, all of them!
In 2016, Ellen DeGeneres made the news again, earning the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Yes, my man POTUS 44, Barack Obama, recognized how Ellen has made extraordinary contributions to the betterment of our culture. He said, about Ellen, “A single individual can make the world a more fun, more open, more loving place.”
One year ago, the very worst (by the numbers of those killed) of all
too, too many mass shootings in the US, occurred in Orlando, Florida, at the Pulse Nightclub, a known gay bar. A cowardly, disturbed man walked in and shot dead 49 people in a place they felt safe and happy — and yes, it was during PRIDE month. This was deemed a hate crime because it happened in Florida. But, know that in many states across the US, this would not be the case. Many states have no laws to protect the LGBTQ community. In Pennsylvania, where I live with my Mrs., and our kinder (children), one can still legally be fired for being LGBTQ. No joke…
So PRIDE month is significant. It is important for much more than the extreme news footage of drag queens, roller-skating trannies, nearly naked men, and bare-chested lesbians. It is important that we, all of the LGBTQ community and our straight friends, family, and allies continue to fight the inequality that remains today. We pay homage to all those that fought the very hard battles before us and paved the way for the new freedoms and ease we now experience. And we continue to speak to the discrimination and hate that is very much a part of today’s world.
Please notice, every victory was a squeaker, 5-4 decisions. mr t, he ran his campaign saying he would be good to the LGBTQ community. Some believed him — not this lefty-liberal-lesbian. He appointed Pence as his Veep, a known supporter of gay conversion therapy — the old, ‘pray the gay away.’ He appointed ultra-conservative Gorsuch to the bench to replace the vacancy left by Scalia. Gorsuch has some deeply disturbing rulings against the trans community and will very likely be a strong adversary of LGBTQ rights, as was Scalia. The tweeter in chief himself has made 5 proclamations so far for the month of June. Breaking presidential tradition, not one includes June as Pride month. Not one word, not one tweet, not one mention of my community. mr t is one small-minded man.
In all of these cases, we have won by one. We all need to come together for the sake of LOVE because it is really that plain and simple.
A person should stay alive, if only out of curiosity. A mensch zol blaybn lebedik, aoyb nor aoys fun naygerikayt.
Small children don’t let you rest. Big children don’t let you sleep. Kleyn kinder ton nit lozn ir mnukkh. Groys kinder ton nit lozn gay shlofn.
Thank you to J, Z and E for an amazing time at the Tyler Arboretum. ❤ Many more good times ahead!
Early Saturday morning, I woke up after having climate change nightmares. These were not just hot flashes — I had real nightmares about the life of our planet. Think the Lorax, on crack. I wrote a post, Blog, Shmog: An Interview Today, poking some acerbic wit at mr t, orange-in-chief, and then I left to head over to the Wear Orange March. This march was not about global warming. It was the about senseless gun violence in our country. Yet another topic t won’t touch. After all, the NRA, they own him.
Hadiya Pendleton, 15 years old, was shot in the back. Gunned down while standing inside Harsh Park with her friends in Chicago in 2013. Just one week earlier, she performed live with her school band at President Obama’s (second) inauguration. Her murder occurred less than one mile from the Obama’s Chicago home. Hadiya, an honors student, volleyball player, band member, daughter — her future was bright in so many ways. The cause of death: shot by mistaken gang rivalry. The shooters, gang members, they told police that she was standing with people they thought were from a rival gang. It was a mistake. Michelle Obama attended her funeral. By that January day in Chicago, she was already the 42nd murder by firearm. A real shonda (shame) for her, her family, our world.
The gates of tears are never shut. Di toi’ern fun treren zeinen kain mol nit farshlossen.
Saturday morning was cool, raining. Hadiya would have been 20 years young on June 2 of this year. Her birthday now represents National Gun Violence Awareness Day across our country. Her brightness is now the color orange, the same color worn by hunters, so as to be seen and not shot. It is the color of gun violence prevention. Less than 100 of us gathered. Many moms held laminated photos of the children they lost to gun violence. We all talked. I told them I was there for Hadiya, and for the Sandy Hook Promise. When we failed all of those children and their teachers who gave their lives protecting them, I knew I had to do more. I couldn’t just sign a petition and call Senator Twomey’s office again. I had to enlist in the fight.
In the US, gun violence kills 93 people every single day — almost 34,000 lives per year. That includes murder, suicide, and accidental death. In Philadelphia, last year our number was 278. Almost 1 life per day. These numbers are stunning, but they must not leave us hardened. We must work harder than we ever have before.
Our kinder (sweet children) deserve better. Hadiya dreamt of going to Northwestern University. She wanted to become a pharmacist, a journalist, or a lawyer. She was a good kid. Hadiya, she deserved better.
Guns are a very large problem in this country. I do not think that our founding fathers had gang members, mental illness, violent domestic abuse, accidental death and suicide in mind when they created the second amendment. I believe there is some good legislation out there (SB 501 for stronger gun control rights) that needs enforcing, and I believe there are some horrible laws on the books (SB 383 that arms school staff, teachers, and boards). Vey iz mir (OMG), we need to make some drastic changes.
Last I checked, we were ONE human race. How can we all begin to walk with empathy and love in our hearts? When will we begin to embrace all of our very unique and beautiful differences, instead of fearing them? I will do that for Hadiya. I will do that for all of those families from Sandy Hook. I will do that for everyone affected by senseless gun violence. We need to do that for all the kinder (children).
Please join me.
Death doesn’t knock on the door (and warn you of it’s impending arrival). Toyt tut nit klapn aoyf di tir.
Live every minute of every day.
This past weekend, my kinder (children) participated in our annual tradition, the Dance Recital. All year long, my shana maidelehs (sweet girls) have been studying ballet, and Big has added jazz to her repertoire. My Mrs., she too was central to the studies, as the chief shlepper (hauler, dragger) and nosherie (snack provider) to our mini prima’s.
If you can ever imagine me, at my very happiest space, it’s watching my kinder do what they love, and they do love to dance, in full regalia on stage. Kvelling (beaming with pride) and grinning until my punim (face) hurts, I am. It’s the tahkeh (absolute, certain) truth.
This year, the Wissahickon Dance Academy presented Shakespeare’s, A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The choreography was so beautiful. The talent, remarkable. They really put on an awesome production. After, all of the other forms of dance performed. Jazz, hip-hop, tap, modern — it was naches (the satisfaction gained from life’s gifts) for everyone in the audience.
Last night, I asked my kinder about the show and what A Midsummer Night’s Dream was about. Here is what they said:
Little: It’s about a donkey and an umm, queen and a king. And what was Z in the second show? Oh yeah, the queen’s daughter. And a man who turns into a donkey and fairies and umm, and an umm, wood sprites. ‘Cause that’s what (Big) was, a wood sprite. I liked when the donkey, who was really Jakiel, eats the grass and when he was really funny with the audience.
Big: So there’s a Queen, Titania, and she has a husband and they get in a big fight. Puck comes and, the husband, he asked Puck if he can borrow these magic flowers that if you sprinkle them on someone, the first person they see, they will fall in love with. You have to do it to people only while they are asleep. And so, he umm, he did it on Titania — sprinkled the flower stuff. And then, these actors come out, and Puck grabs one of them and gives him a donkey head. He (the Donkey) scares all the actors away. And then, he accidentally trips over Titania. She wakes up and falls in love with the donkey because of the flower magic. She was supposed to fall in love with her husband, but they had a big fight about their daughter. Then, I know! They both (Titania and the Donkey) go to sleep and then the husband has the magic flower and he sprinkles it on Titania and she wakes up and falls madly in love with him again. Puck comes on and takes the donkey head away, and that is all I know. Ohhh, and the whole thing, it was the Donkey-headed guy’s dream! That’s why he scratched his head at the end.
I asked them, what was the best part of being in the recital?
Big: I just love dancing. I liked the flowers on my costume, and I liked how the bottom was like a tutu, and I liked the wings.
Little: I really like twirling, twirling a lot.
In Act II, my Little, she danced with her elementary ballet class to Once Upon a Dream from Sleeping Beauty. Big, she was an orphan in Annie, dancing with her class in jazz 1 to, Hard Knock Life
Big: I loved it. It was fun because I love Annie, I love that song, it is fun to pretend to be orphans and that dance is just fun.
Little: My dance was from sleeping beauty. I don’t know what it was about, but I got to twirl. I liked the roses on my costume and twirling. I liked when (Big) danced with the bucket and slammed it on the floor too.
All in all, I was beaming. And for two shows, a couple of hours each, I actually forgot about the mishegas (craziness) that is happening in our world. Such a simcheh (joyous occasion) I wish for all of you!
Thank you for letting me go on about my kinder today.
A cutie pie showing off her new dress. A maidel mit a klaidel.
Spring is here and it’s beautiful dog walking weather. I love being outside with the family, proudly walking our
crazy, loud, barking, pulling, misbehaved, and foraging boychik (little boy) and grabbing some extra vitamin D. Something I’ve noticed since Gatsby arrived to rescue our family, we constantly come across what seems to me, to be a gratuitous amount of chicken bones. Legs, wings, breasts, thighs… you name it and Gatsby will find them. One can only begin to understand my love for this furry family member, as I extract his foul, fowl finds from deep within the clenches of his canines. Disgusterous, as the BFG would say.
I would not be surprised at all, to find that our building and the surrounding homes, were built atop what was once, some sort of chicken cemetery. If you just go by the gross numbers of
very gross bones per walk, per day — something just doesn’t add up. Storms, wind, digging, and these bones surface. It’s haunting in a ‘Carol Ann, don’t go near the light’ kind of way. Often we, and by we, I mean Gatsby, finds grilled chicken breasts. There is often an assortment of accompanying sauces. And dare I say it, side dishes. WTF? Has Colonel Sanders gone AWOL? Has Frank Perdue gone cuckoo?
What if there is a chicken serial killer on the loose? And my Gatsby, with a nose for a nice nosh (little something to snack on), can’t help but uncover truth and justice for all. Law and Order: Poultry, live, right here in my neighborhood. The Capon Capers. Benson and Stabler, I need you here at Johnson and Greene, and bring that trained squad of detectives that focus primarily on putrid poultry misconduct.
Keeping my glass half-full, it is possible that we are constantly on the same
frigging, filthy path as some unfortunate young travelers, who leave behind banty, barnyard fowl bones and scraps to find their way back home, like Hansel and Gretel. My Gatsby, sweet little man, is probably just doing his best sleuthing in an effort to help these lost kinder (children)?
It is possible that while wearing my pollyanna, rose-tinted sunglasses, someone is leaving behind the cock-a-doodle-doo trail until we find the magic wishbone? Gatsby’s mania for mystery may be a search the answers to our dreams? My lanky, long-legged, detective dog, is just trying his best to look out for our family. What a good boy!
You see, in my heart of hearts, I don’t want to believe that my neighborhood has gone afoul in dreck (trash, litter). Thankfully, after a year now, I can sternly let out a geshrei (scream) for Gatsby, “Drop it!” and he does. So does everyone else around me… maybe that’s why there are so many bones? Oy vey! (OMG!)
And this Yiddish Proverb, words to live by, if you are Gatsby:
A chicken dinner is best shared by two people. Me and the chicken. A hindl mitog iz bester sherd durkh tsvey mentshn. Mir aun di hindl.
What a good boy!
Getting over fighting Beelzebub was tough stuff. Losing, maybe
hell, effing yeah a bissel (a little bit) worse. It has already taken up a lot of time, effort, energy and wellness for me, my Mrs., my kinder (kiddo’s) and the wonderful people who were helping me scrimmage. Still, my glass, it stays half-full. If there was an award for, ‘Most Resilient,’ this one would definitely go to me. Knock me down, and I come right back up again. Spunk, integrity, and Energizer Bunny. Pliant, flexible and rebellious. That’s me.
In this latest round of rebound, I am working on being present and mindful. Here are five things that I have noticed in myself
In Yiddish, they say, Bad temper and anger, they shorten the years. Der ka’as un der tsoren farkirtsen di yoren.
So, I must do more tai chi and learn to meditate. Stat! Plus, the anger is just sadness in disguise.
Kirtser geshlofen, lenger gelebt. Translated to, The less you sleep, the more you get out of life.
A nice positive spin on
frickinginsomnia. Nu? Leave it to Yiddish! Oh, how I love this juicy language!
A fool doesn’t age and cold water doesn’t spoil. A nar vert nit elter un kalteh vasser vert nit kalyeh.
Yiddish! Beautiful… a phrase for every life moment!
To fall down, you manage alone but it takes friendly hands to get up. Falen falt men alain, ober oifsuhaiben zikh darf men a hant fun a freind.
Thank you dear friends. ❤
Happy mamas, and an easy upbringing. Freylekhe mames, un a gringe hodevaniye.
And I continue to move onward! Karma will win in the end. It must! As for resilience, I must figure out the lesson to be learned here. It’s a bit tiring to keep reinventing the wheel.
An ounce of luck is worth more than a pound of gold. Besser a loit mazel aider a funt gold.
Shana punim (beautiful face)
Who could say no to this face?
You know there is a Yiddish proverb for Gatsby:
Lozn a hunt aoyf a shtul aun er vet shpringen afn tish. Allow a dog on a chair and he’ll jump on the table.
Hello, my friends. I have been quiet of late — very unlike me, I know. It has been a hell of a couple of
years weeks. First, strep throat knocked us all to our knees. One by one, we fell. Despite hand washing, Lysol wipes and new toothbrushes, we were coated with cooties and all swilling shots of penicillin. Strep is literally, like swallowing a brick. Not fun times as an adult — I can only imagine the pain for my kinder (children). Gatsby was literally, the last man standing. Vey iz mir (OMG, but worse), it was bad.
What followed in the aftermath was tougher to bear than the bacteria-baked bricks… Our, my journey of late has been tough. No harder than the next person mind you… of that I am well aware. Still difficult, nonetheless.
I have been living the plight of the salmon. (Not the delicious kind that ends up atop your shmear (cream cheese) on a toasted everything bagel…) I’m talking about the astounding event where the momma fish
like any other but the mother would do this leaves years of comfort in ocean dwelling, genetically alters its very form to seek out and return, upstream, against the tides, waterfalls, bears, and all odds, to the roots of their birth. Without google maps, these salmon, they locate the exact freshwater stream of their birth, to lay the eggs of a new generation on the gravel river beds. And then they die, knowing the kinder are well-tended and will carry on.
These salmon, they are fighters. They are filled with courage and defiance to do what they must do — to follow their core. They are the definition of #rebelgirls and #strongwomen. They defy all limitations and persevere, despite obstacles, predators and sheer exhaustion. They do this because they have no other choice but to be true to themselves and those they love.
This Yiddisheh momma has been #livingfearlesslyauthentic, much like the salmon. I swam hard and long. I reached my freshwater riverbed, and I spoke my truth. I did so for injustice and all that is unfair. I did so for my Mrs., my Big, and my Little. I did so for ME. And I truly believed that:
If you lie on the ground, you cannot fall. Az mi ligt oif der erd, ken men nit fallen.
What I learned, was that you can still fall. That the truth is not always enough. That there are so many who can easily look away from truths. That so many can label, misrepresent, smear (very different from a nice shmear), and lie. And that the latter group that can win. And that in itself can be mentally and physically crushing.
My silence is over. My quiet has passed. I still grieve the loss, nurture my courage. I will become whole again. After all, I have two shayneh maidelehs (sweet little girls) that must know that despite everything, it is always an obligation, to tell the truth. That we must always stand tall and respectfully fight, not only the injustices that we face, but those of our fellow humans too. I have learned in no uncertain terms that the battles that surround us are much larger than we know. That the work ahead is complex.
And despite my loss, I would stand up again, and risk the same fall. My Mrs. and me, we will raise two mighty girls with voices to engage and take a stand for their sisters and brothers who need them.
Injustice won this time, a shonda (crying shame). But this particular salmon, I am not rolling over and playing dead.
A liar tells his story so often that he gets to believe it himself. A ligner hert zikh zeineh ligen azoi lang ein biz er glaibt zikh alain.
Plus, I know karma is a bitch for all nogudniks (someone on the wrong side of the law).
Each and every one of us is beautifully different. That alone is worthy of celebration.
Bei mir bis du sheyn. To me you’re beautiful.
This Yiddisheh mama has a major confession to make. I’ve been holding this one in, so bear with me. It comes from a lifetime ago. You SAHM’s, like my Mrs., oh how I want to be you. Let me schmear (spread) some broad, sweeping caveats, loudly and clearly, that you, by far, have the single hardest job on the planet.
Dem, ikh visn. This, I know.
You may find me to be the schmegeggy (doofus, idiot). Hours suck. Pay worse. Days are ongoing and relentless. Sleep? Vos iz dos? (What is that?) Tantrums, bickering, and ‘hangry’ (tired and hungry) whining. The driving, the traffic, the geshrei-ing (yelling). There are enough scattered organic food scraps strewn across the car
to easily feed a small city to enrage me. I am aware of the mistreatment and abuse you encounter. Selective deafness. Your voice sounds like the adults on any episode of Charlie Brown — Whaa whaa whaaa whaaaa whaaa… And, like the air they breathe, they take you for granted daily, hurling sweaters, trash, already-chewed gum, back-packs, boogers from their noses that they don’t ever pick, and whatever that was, that was stuck on the bottom of their boots at you on their way to play. Ewww. Disgusterous. The spills, messes, laundry, groceries and constant wardrobe changes. The lack of privacy and ‘me time.’ The lack of adult conversation. I feel your pain when a craft, carefully chosen with thoughtfulness and love, causes utter unhappiness, and you experience the ‘epic mom fail.’ Oy vey iz mir (OMG).
It’s this momma’s mishegas (craziness) for which I yearn. Who’s meshuggah (nuts) here? I know it’s me. I’m in awe of you and your daily sacrifices. I value you in ways society always overlooks. You have the charge of building little human beings that are kind and empathic in a world that is not.
To read more, please click here
It’s been some seven months or so since we last, well, hooked- up. You, me, Doc M., the hospital. It was, well, magical! I know you felt it too. You, so helpful, so giving. I miss your touch. That extraordinary effect you have over me.
For those of you not in the know, I’m talking about Botox. Not the ‘wrinkle-relaxer’ to iron-out the multitude of
well-earned, effin’ lines that surround my mouth and eyes kind of Botox. Oh no, I’m speaking of the genius who figured out that if you inject actual botulism, a poison, strategically and methodically into the muscles of people like me who suffer chronic pain (cervical dystonia, and occipital neuralgia), it will deaden the pain. Deaden the pain. Three such beautiful words.
May you never experience such pain and troubles. Ir zolt mir nit visn fun ken tzar un tsuris.
Botox, you quiet my nerve signals, as they are
effed up not so hotsy-totsy. When they are screaming to my brain, “OUCH, spasm, contract, OUCH,” your prickly approach allows my body to function, to feel like me. With you, I like me. Without you in my life, the pain gets so unbearable, that the contents of my body empty completely. Yes, both north and south partner up on this exercise in exhaustive depletion. This, in turn, causes dehydration, additional spasms, contractions, and OUCHES! Not the big-O I am seeking.
onabotulinumtoxinA, Botox, your injectables, make me closer to fine. You complete me. The biggest problem in our relationship — what most people fight over, gelt (money). The dreaded pharma co-pay. You see, your precious vials, while worth every cent my love, cost $1200. Since insurance makes us ‘go dutch,’ our chance encounters run $600 USD. Together, we need Dr. M. and his wise, slow hands. The best neurologist
a tier 3 kind of practice according to insurance, even though he is in my effing network in the city of brotherly love unites us. The ambiance of our darkened medical suite, the cost of the tincture, the scent of the isopropyl alcohol — can you hear the clamorous Ka-ching that distances us?
Don’t worry about it! Zok nit kin vey!
This is how my Mrs. and me, we approached this dilemma for the first nine months. Feel better. Life will be good. Until those credit card bills come thudding through the post. You or groceries, school, rent, life. It’s too expensive to exist. That puts our union, our relationship, in the ‘varbotn‘ (forbidden) category. This is not the frugalista, Yiddisheh momma speaking. This is a true pharmaceutical reality that divides our picture-perfect match. We are no better than the Montagues and the Capulets. A star-crossed pair. A schadchen (marriage broker) couldn’t make me a better match, find me a better find.
So, my dear Allergan, this is an open plea for help. You, your Botox! It works, I am your advocate! Your ambassador. A walking, talking example of Botox in action when I am lucky enough to be under your spell. Help me help you to help me feel better. I can be a better mama, a better spouse, a better worker, a better activist, a better all around human being on the planet. Your unique power to deaden the pain in quarterly injectable, installments, is no less than miraculous. No heavy opioid side effects. Instant ability to operate heavy machinery and make important life decisions. With you by my side, the pain, she is very manageable. Sleep is greatly improved. Appetite is back. Together with my occipital stimulator, I can almost consider myself to be, dare I even say it, N – O- R – M – A – L.
Allergan, Botox, Dr. M., hospital. Until we all meet again. There is no shame here. Only love.
“Good night, good night! parting is such sweet sorrow, That I shall say good night till it be morrow.” William Shakespear, Romeo and Juliet
Zie gezunt. Be healthy. Be well.
I woke up today, a good thing. So did you, because you are reading. Nu? Already, two good things. I looked at the news on my phone… Palm Sunday Church bombings in Egypt. Dozens killed. US Aircraft carrier heading over to get closer to North Korea. A deadly truck attack in Sweden. Sweden??
I took Gatsby on a walk on a nice sunny morning and I said, “G, we need to see some sign of hope.” On the way home, look what I saw.
The highest form of wisdom is kindness. di hekhstn far fun khkhmh iz guthartsikayt.
May we all wise up and have hope.
It’s a slippery slope my friends and we are headed down the rabbit hole fast. The latest for me, my Mrs. and our shanah maideleh kinder (sweet beautiful girls) is our invisibility in the upcoming Census. It’s been announced that there will not be an LGBTQ count in the 2020 census. To be fair, that’s the way I roll, it’s important that you know that we have never been counted before. But after the stunning momentum from the Obama administration, the proclamation to love out loud with all the legal rights and freedoms from the Supremes, government agencies, lefty liberals, and this Yiddisheh lesbian, we were hopeful that following the next Census, our government would see us. And after they see us, they would work to find ways so that we wouldn’t always be under some threat, be it physical, emotional or legal. They would see us and allocate the resources that are so important to our LGBTQ community. They would see us and help.
Congressional Democrats (much too many for mr t to count on his tiny little hands), along with several government agencies (Health and Human Services, the Justice Department and Housing and Urban Development) have all requested that mr t’s administration counts the LGBTQ population in the next Census (2020). Figuring, ‘Hey, wouldn’t be a swell idea to better understand sexual orientation, marital status, family status, gender identity and the location, size and socioeconomic status of this population? We are out ringing doorbells counting anyway?’
mr t and his slimy swamp mates, they say there’s no need for collecting data on us. A crowd of people, and not one real person among them. A groyse oylem, un nito ein mentsch. Their anti-gay agenda is clear as day, and I feel it as real as those hot flashes, vey iz mir (OMG). Gorsuch, poised for confirmation via the cowardly nuclear option, is an extreme threat to our civil rights for the next 4 to 5 decades. Well, you know what
f*ck that? WE ARE HERE. You cannot erase us.
You may say, Lisala, what’s the big mitziah (problem)? I can’t speak for everyone, but you know how loud I speak for my mishpocha (family). Coming out, ‘being out,’ makes you leave the cloak of invisibility behind.
If you are straight, you don’t know from this tsuris (trouble). Your are counted. You count. You matter.
To read the rest of this post, please click here
M’wah! It’s worth the click!
There is a certain trail we take when hiking, the Mrs., me and the kinder (children), where we pass this stunning tree. I love this tree, and it’s very obvious how many others do too. I would never carve my initials in it or declare my undying love for the Mrs. atop its thick ‘barky’ skin — I’m too much of a ‘Lorax‘ for such behavior. My Little and Big, they always ask why so many people would hurt the tree with so much engraving and writing? Who am I to know…
It’s good to behold beauty and live with wisdom. Oif shainem iz gut tsu kuken; mit a klugen iz gut tsu leben.
I do believe that this tree, (all of the trees actually), holds inside a certain shrewdness about you, me, and all of those that pass by its grace and grandeur. This tree, it feels our pains and celebrates our victories. She is a living, breathing road map of where we have been and will tell the tale of where we will go.
In the meantime, this very tree will continue to help our environment by absorbing the CO2 in the air, releasing clean oxygen, fighting against water pollution, protecting our skin from the powerful rays of the sun, and holding in its canopy, a wealth of wildlife, like squirrels, opossums, bugs, birds and the very special and much-needed, bees. I must add how this very tree is a wonderful source of outdoor play for my shanah maideleh’s (sweet girls) as we traipse about in her home, the woods.
This tree, may she continue to give me a big sigh of relief. When I look at her or think of her, I feel a little better about everything.
Zie gezunt! Be healthy, be well!
I’d like to interview you, honey. What would you like to talk about today? Ummmmmm. What is an interview again? Oh. Well, my sister went to a sleepover party. And my two moms and me stayed home and had fun. In the morning, I colored when my mom did her work.
She is coloring as we schmooze, so I ask her, “What do you like to color best?” Usually (said adorably as ‘lusually’) a picture for somebody. Like a gift.
Do you know what you want to be when you grow up? Previous answers have been a teacher, a librarian, a dancer… A puppy trainer! Because I love puppies and doggies and Gatsby.
This is so true. All last weekend, she played ‘Daisy,’ a girl puppy. As I played fetch with Gatsby, I too played fetch with my new pup, Daisy! What do you like most about dogs? They are snuggly and really cute. And lusually their nose is wet.
What do you like most about Gatsby, our boychik (little boy)? I like him because he is cute and I love him. And I like the way he eats. And I also like him because I like when we walk him and play with him.
What do you like most about school? I like being with my friends and playing. I like it because it has lots of nature and we play a lot.
Ok, I’m done talking. I forget everything else. Oh, and mommy, I love you!
But honey, I have more questions… and she is gone, like the wind. I hope you enjoyed our snapshot in time.
Oh, are you ever a clever child! Oy, a gezunt dir in kepele!
This My Sunday Photo happened when the storm Stella, she came to town. They played, they watched, they slid in the icy snow, and they sewed! Look what I spied with my little eye:
Look at these shana punims (radiant faces)!
Nu? This mr t, he has me farklempt (all choked up) with his evil and hatred. Not too long ago, I wrote a post, I AM WOMAN HEAR MY VOICE. Well, I’ve taken it to the stage folks. Please, bear with my (awful) voice as I stumble through my own, personal feminist anthem.
Please feel free to sing along. If only to cover up my voice! Vey iz mir…I’m meshuggeneh (crazy), but I am so motivated to peacefully make a change. Because Never Again, is now folks.
So much darkness lately. In the news, in the world, in our lives. I try so very hard to keep my glass half-full. Some days, they are easier than others. Today is one of those days. I approached a gloomy, wet commute this morning, and I tried hard to find some lightness. An old Jewish proverb says:
A little bit of light pushes away a lot of darkness. A kleyn bisl fun likht pushiz avek a platz fun finsternish.
Let me share some of my light with you, in case you need it too.
Gold glitters, even in the mud. Gold sheint fun bloteh.