Small town girl. Joins Navy. Sees the world. Flies in planes. Hunts submarines. Gets out of military and has 3 kids. Rejoins Air National Guard as an "old lady" of 38.

A humorous compilation of stories and lessons learned. Usually the hard way.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Be a Daffodil.

Photo Credits: Forest Wander

Spring is in the air!  Well, at least I’d like to believe it is- that is- if you can look past the snow on the ground.  Yes, here in Maryland we had a beautiful 70-degree day on Saturday and then fell into a downward evil weather spiral to an ugly 28 degrees and snow on Monday.  Wha?
I’d like to say everyone is accepting this fine, with grace and dignity, but that would be a lie. People are starting to get crazy.  And not just your typical crazy (like my sister), but an edgy, snappy, YES I WILL WEAR FLIP FLOPS IN SNOW IF I WANT crazy.  They are booking spontaneous, unplanned weekend trips to Florida.  They are wearing tank tops under turtlenecks.  It is as though if we wear them, summer will come.  We keep convincing ourselves- making empty promises of suntan lotions and beach bags- as the tips of our toes become frostbitten in the snow.  Oh we are going to make this 40-degree day a TSHIRT day- because if we believe it- it will be TRUE!

Even the plants are going crazy.  Above is a picture of them all snug inside at a flat 72 degrees.  You would think they would be content, happy and appreciating just how good they have it.  Not these little guys.  They have their little faces pressed so hard up against the sliding glass; they are nearly freezing to the window pane.  As they peer longingly into the great outdoors, thinking the grass is so much greener- though they cannot see far enough to realize it is, in fact, still brown.  Dry and brittle, crumbling to the touch. 
They are foolish little plants. So unaware of their quickened death should they boldly venture into the treacherous weather.  For alas, they are just mere seedlings, but a few weeks old.  They have not the intelligence or the stamina that the fearless daffodils do. 
Daffodils, on the other hand, have their own little internal clock.  They stubbornly think that despite what the thermometer reports, by god it is March and they are damn well going to make their appearance if they please.  BACK OFF.  For no one is as brave or determined as the daffodils.  Bless their crazy little hearts. 
Oh sure, everyone else stealthily keeps a watchful eye on the daffodils.  The primroses, forsythias, and even tulips like to pretend that they were there, broken through the frozen soil the entire time.  Meanwhile, they will not step foot above ground until they see that the daffodils have successfully emerged without sudden death or maiming.
It is true, the daffodils are crazy.  I call them this every time I see them.  On the sides of the roads.  In vases.  However, I admire their just-go-for-it attitude.  They throw caution to the wind and are intimidated by no one or nothing.  They are born leaders.  They are assertive and fearless.  They truly believe that you only live once.  Or for a few weeks every year at least- so they just don’t have time to waste and ponder.  They make a plan and take action. 
I cannot help but think that we all would be a little better off to think like a daffodil some of the time.  This spring, I challenge you to be a daffodil.  Crazy but fearless. Time is not promised.  Take action. 
What would you do if failure was not an option?

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Doctor Crazy

Stock image of 'crazy girl doctor isolated on white background'

Photo courtesy of Colourbox

This one time, I got gross eye.  Not pink eye or goopy eye.   It was just gross eye.  It was leaky all the time and itched like a sailor leaving Thailand.  Yeah, you know the kind of itch I’m talking about.  It’s the kind that makes grown conscious adults permanently maim and attempt to tear off their skin in any attempt to relieve the atrocious sensation.   I spent most of the day trying to scratch this godforsaken irritation on the teensy part of my lower eyelid with my big monkey thumbs, all the while, attempting to not disturb my make-up.  By the end of the day I looked like I had been sucker punched in the left eye, meanwhile my right was big, bushy and beautiful.  Well, it looked normal anyway.

So the next morning, I woke with my left eye crusted together with spittles of nastiness stained on my pillow.  My eye was literally bonded to my pillow.  And so, I did the one thing I hate doing more than anything. 

I showered (I hate showering- I like the results- just hate that I have to do it everyday) and then called to make an apt to see a doctor.  Any doctor.  I could not wait any longer.  My compulsiveness will be the death of me someday, I just know it. 

Scene from Someday: 
Me:  Let’s jump off this cliff NOW!
Loving Friend:  No, I’m not sure that’s a good idea.  Maybe we should think about it.
Me:  There’s no time for thinking.  We are being chased by flesh-eating meerkats!!  We must jump NOW!  There is no other way!!
Loving Friend:   Wait!!!!  There may be another way……

And back to Present Day: 
I go to my apt. 
Doctor enters room.
Doctor examines my eye.

Doctor:  Well, Julia, it seems you have an allergy in your eye.

Me:  An allergy?  Just in one eye?  Like one eye is super-weirdly sensitive and the other is not?  Is that even possible?

Doctor:  Oh, it’s very possible.  I’ll just prescribe you some antihistamine eye drops…

Me:  Ah… [my jaw drops, crickets chirp… for awhile…]

Doctor:  Is everything okay?

Me:  Well, it’s just that… I kind of have this tiny fear of eye drops.  But it’s okay.  I can do it if I have to.  Actually, my husband helps me.  [God love him]

Doctor:  What?!  That’s absurd!  We’re going to get you over this fear right now!

Me:  Ah…  What?  No, no.  It’s okay, really.  I’ll do it when I get home.

Doctor:  Oh no!  You can’t just depend on him to help you.  What if he's not home?  You need to learn how to do this.  You’re going to do this.  Right now!

Me:  Oh, no-  I can do it.  Really.  I just...  [Good lord, what is this woman going to do!?]  I’m just a little nervous…

Doctor:  Sit down.  No, just sit.

Me:  Oh God, this doctor is seriously crazy!  Where is a nurse?  Anybody?

Doctor Crazy grabs a Texas-size bottle of eye solution, then turns and begins coming towards me with the bottle in her hand.  I take a step back and hit the examining table.  I’m trapped. 

Doctor Crazy: Have a seat on the table.  Now you’re going to do it like this.  [She takes the bottle eye torture, thrashes her head back, and begins shooting the solution into her eyes- as if it is the most normal thing to do in front of her patients.  I cling to the table, cringing, looking for an out of some sort as artificial tears begin pouring down her face.  I must be on Candid Camera.  That’s the only possible explanation].

Now, you try it.  [she thrashes the bottle into my hand]

Me:   Um, [I try to stall…] shouldn’t I have a mirror or something?

Doctor Crazy:  No!!  You can’t look in a mirror!  You must look up at the ceiling.  Now try it!

Me:  Why is this happening to me??  [I tilt my head back and hold the evil solution over my face.  My hands are shaking and my eyes begin blinking uncontrollably.]

Doctor Crazy:  Now stop that blinking!  Tilt your head back more!  Here, give me that!

What happened next, I could not make up if I tried.

[Doctor Crazy snatches the bottle from my hand and literally straddles over me on the examining table.  Normally this alone would be completely awkward; however, my fears were overshadowing the obvious strangeness of the moment.]

Me:  Wait!!!

Doctor Crazy:  Hold on, you’re fine.  Look up.  Open your eyes!!

[She begins squirting artificial tears all over my eye.  I close it as it stings.  She treats the other eye that is not irritated.  She just continues to squeeze the bottle.  The solution is now pouring down my face and running down my V-neck shirt.  I am covered in solution to my undergarments before she finally lets up and decides enough is enough.  And still, very little has actually entered my infected eye at this point.

Doctor Crazy:  Well, I guess that didn’t quite get it in there, but you get the point, right?  And now, you’re not afraid anymore, right?

I nodded, dabbing my eyes, face, and chest with tissue.  I am soaking wet.  I grabbed my purse and ran for the door before she could even begin to think of doing a round two.

As I sat in my car in the parking lot and locked my doors.  I glanced back at the office door, fearing I may see this crazy woman running towards me with the bottle in her hand.  My hands trembled. 

What in God’s name had just happened in there?  How did a simple gross eye turn into Dr. Crazy taking it upon herself to cure me of my fears?  Instead, they had only been made ten times worse.  And so it remains:  I still hate taking showers and going to the doctor’s office.  Though I will continue to shower as a public courtesy- I will never go to the doctor again unless something is clearly broken and protruding through my skin or I am bleeding enough to need a transfusion.