Things My Daughter Should Know

I was recently doing the dreaded “seasonal clothes change” chore. You know, the task of going through all the kids’ clothes and getting rid of outgrown clothes? This chore could easily take me three hours, and I do it twice a year. I was thinking as I was digging through my 5 year old’s pants (besides ‘how did these 18mo pants get here?’) that this, like many jobs I do around the house, is a chore that no one else in the family even knows is a chore to be done. The recurring thought of “this house would go to hell in a handbasket if I wasn’t around” went through my head yet again.

Being elbow deep in Carter’s brand clothing for three hours gives one time to think, and so I began to envision what would happen if, heaven forbid, something tragic happened and I was no longer around for my family. Visions of piled laundry, mounds of dishes, and my kids running around wearing 3 sizes too small pants as capris ran through my mind.

If I’m being fair, I’m sure my dear husband would figure it out. I didn’t marry a moron. He would not let our 5 year old wear 18m pants that he could bust out of like the Hulk. My husband would figure out how to do the dishes and the laundry. More realistically, he’d probably hire that crap out and then our house would be much cleaner than it is now and he’d wonder why he hadn’t gotten rid of me much sooner.

I have no doubt that he could raise our two boys to be fine, upstanding young men, just like he is. Or was. He’s 40 now, not exactly young. But still fine and upstanding. I do, however, worry about his ability to raise our daughter. There are so many things that she would need to know to be a fine, upstanding young woman that he doesn’t even know are things.

I started to make a list of what I want my daughter to know if I am not around to tell her:

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Why Roughhousing is Allowed in Our House

On a recent, lazy Sunday afternoon, I was busy with some chores around the house and my husband had brought some work home from the office and was working in the basement. The kids were bored. The novelty of their new Christmas toys was starting to wear off and it was too cold to send them outside to play.

My oldest asked me to play hide and seek with them. I was folding laundry that was piled up to my chin and turned to look at him like he had lost his daggum mind. I suggested that he play with his little brother and sister instead.

“It’s more fun with you.”

“Well, yes, honey, most things are, but I really need to get this done. Maybe you could help me fold this and—“

He left the room before I finished my thought.

I went downstairs later and all three kids were wrestling in the family room. There was a lot of noise. Screaming, crying, yelling. I was about to do what I always do when they start roughhousing and tell them to stop before someone got hurt, but then I stopped and really listened.

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Vasovagal is not a feminine itch product

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I’m a passer-outer. I don’t exactly know if that’s a word, but I pass out. Frequently. I have what is called a “vasovagal response”. While this sounds like some sort of gelatinous ointment one would put on one’s lady nether-regions, it is, in fact, just a medical term used to describe fainting in response to a trigger. For some people the trigger could be seeing blood, or having a fright, or even getting good news. For me the trigger is much less cute and dainty. My trigger is having diarrhea or vomiting. Yep, that’s right. So, as if having explosive diarrhea and/ or puking my guts out isn’t terrible enough, there is the chance that I may also black out, lose control of whatever bodily fluids I have left and fall on the floor. This is most likely to occur in a bathroom where I’ve either been sitting on the pot or leaning over it, so I end up laying on a bathroom floor. It is bad enough when I am at home where I live with three males with bad aim; but it is absolutely horrifying when I am in someone else’s bathroom, especially a public one.

While falling down on gross bathroom floors is pretty awful, it does make for some pretty funny after-the-fact stories. The most memorable for me (and all involved) occurred on February 14, 2001. It was the first Valentine’s Day my husband and I spent as a married couple. 

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Gym Rules

It’s a new year! Did you make a resolution to lose weight? Exercise more? Maybe join a gym? You’re in good company. I don’t have actual statistics, but I would venture to say that about 5.3 million people join the gym I belong to each January. Gym life gets back to normal by the 3rd week in February. I have belonged to a gym for 20 years now and, though you can’t tell by looking at me, especially after this particular holiday season, I regularly go to the gym 3-5 times per week. Anyone who goes to a gym was new at one point and I applaud anyone who has made a commitment to his or her health. Most gyms have rules that deal with hygiene and machine use (wipe down machines, throw away towels, re-rack weights, etc), but there are quite a few unwritten rules that everyone should know. Though I’m no expert, I do feel semi-qualified based on experience to offer the following tips to those who have just joined a gym on some basic etiquette that may not be posted in the gym’s contract.

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