That deer is a sweater eater. He is on WOOL. -M.H.

January 9th, 2013 | by TJ |

Let’s do something completely nuts, and I’ll just tell you what’s been going on.

1. Penny. I’ve covered the whole 20 months old is hard and frustrating thing, right? Okay, forget all that. She’s also hilarious and delightful. She learns at least a new word a day, most days it’s two or three. And she learns them. I hand her a carrot, and I say, “This is a carrot.” And she’s like, okay, carrot. And she’ll hold it up several times and show it to me, and be like, “Yo, here’s a carrot,” to show off to me that she now knows that the hard orange thing that she has FUCK ALL intentions of actually eating is a carrot. And she smiles proudly. And now she knows – that’s a carrot. She knows it forever.

Words learned in the past two or so days: bird, pretty, thank you (on top of the previous “thanks!), carrot, apple (to actually refer to clementines, which we just bought for the first time EVER – how about THOSE THINGS, AM I RIGHT? PEELING RIGHT OPEN!), taco, pop (for ice pop), and, I don’t know, world peace.

She’s also started calling her collection of blankets “naps.” It’s wrong, but it’s adorable.

I want to tell you all of the words she says, but I’m not going to, mostly because I didn’t write them down, but also because there’s got to be over a hundred at this point. She said her first sentence I don’t know how many months ago, and has been asking questions and holding simple conversations for a while now, too. Sometimes I forget that I’m the only one who hears her so perfectly clearly, but a good percentage of her words are easy for just about anyone to decipher.

HAIR.
 

Oh, and she also made up this song, which is no big thing, kids do that, but the same little tune and nonsense words were repeated so often over the next few days that we actually all sing it now.

(there’s a video here)

Try not to be intimidated by my perfectly staged, perfectly lovely, perfectly perfect mommyblogger home and life.

Zap-oh-dee, zap-oh-dee, hey, Penny, do you want to sing zap-oh-dee? Zap-oh-dee in the shower, zap-oh-dee while I’m cooking dinner, zap-oh-dee while we were doing annoyingly cliche adorable family walking through the little local wildlife zoo together over the weekend.

Phil & Penelope
 

The membership to the Wildlife World Zoo & Aquarium was Penny’s “big” Christmas gift from Phil and I. Since she is young enough to still fall under “free,” the membership technically only covers me. It came with a one time free adult admission, which we used for the family visit pictured above to get Phil in, so we only need to go once more before it’s nearly paid for itself. It’s close to the base – only 5 miles – and parking is free, so it’s hardly a huge loss if we head over and she loses her baby mind and I have to haul her back home. Or, to go over and just visit her current favorite things. The zoo has a petting zoo and playground, carousel, kangaroo walkabout, four aquarium buildings which she liked quite a bit (and which I imagine we’ll visit quite a bit in the Arizona armpit months), a baby animal nursery, a train, and, I don’t know, animals.

When we were in the petting zoo, I was taking pictures of Penny while Phil let her feed some of the pushy goats and deer some pellets, and an older couple was talking to each other, saying, “Look at that deer, eating that lady’s sweater! Look! That deer is just eating the lady’s sweater!”

Eventually, I heard them and was able to rescue the pocket of my FAVORITE FRUMPY OLD MAN CARDIGAN from the mouth of the world’s pushiest deer EVER, but geeze, people, THE LADY was standing right there and clearly distracted by her adorable child’s first face to face encounter with stinky tame wildlife. A little “Excuse me, ma’am, I don’t mean to be rude, but I wasn’t sure if you were aware that there’s an animal eating your clothing” wouldn’t have been amiss.

Honestly, I’m not as mad about the deer backwash all over the pocket of my sweater as I am about the opening left for my husband to say later, “They didn’t have to fawn over you, but a little head’s up would have been bucking nice.”

Don’t worry, I killed him, and it was painful.

Petting zoo

2. My head. I saw my neurologist yesterday. I like the guy. I saw him for about two seconds yesterday, seriously. He’s very quick, he’s very brusque, but I’ve never felt rushed or like he wasn’t giving me full attention, or like I wasn’t getting quality care. I saw him for the first time when I was hospitalized with my first vestibular migraine, and this past time when I saw him, yesterday, we decided I don’t have to go back for six months.

Things are good. It’s not perfect. I told him, my words exactly, “I am not completely miserable,” and he knew exactly what I meant, and he is familiar with me, and familiar with my situation – both mine and the general condition – enough to know that we’re at a good spot. I’m very pleased, compared to where I was last April, or last summer, or even last fall. If I thought everything could be perfect, I probably wouldn’t have accepted an appointment 6 months out to just check in, but then, I don’t get the feeling he would have offered that, either.

I feel like this is probably vague, like a weird update on a chapter I haven’t actually written, but whatever. Aren’t you kind of glad I haven’t made my head thing into my thing? You know what I mean. It’s been a thing in my life, and in Phil’s life, but ugh, aren’t we all glad I haven’t made it my thing.

Anyway, so this chapter I haven’t actually bothered to write is mostly closed, except that to get to this point that is good but not perfect, I take some medication at a higher level than I used to, and I liked the old level because it didn’t work too well, but didn’t have any side effects and I thought that was a good balance. But now I take the higher level that works quite well, but does have some side effects that I don’t really care for, one of the main ones being that while I have a lot to say, there’s a lot more wild hand gesturing and frustrated face pinching-upping to get my point across, and things like calling the oven “the onion” and saying what I almost mean, which works pretty fine when you’re talking to someone near you, or to your husband who isn’t particularly big on nuance anyway, but not particularly great for blogging.

So, like I said. It’s good, but not perfect. There’s not really a way around that.

And to be clear, I’m not offering that as an excuse for not blogging as much. I’m not saying, “Oh, I haven’t been blogging as much because I take a medication that makes it harder for me to blog.” I do take a medication that does make it harder, but I’m not making excuses because I don’t feel I owe anyone any. It’s a small distinction, but it is one, because I hate when people apologize for not blogging, because, come on. Do it or don’t, it’s okay. It is. You can stop for as long as you want to or need to, and then you can start again, and it’s always okay, okay? You don’t need to apologize to anyone, ever for letting one or two or twelve or a hundred days go by without writing a blog post. You can have reasons, you can say where you were, but you never have to apologize.  I JUST WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT PART IS CLEAR.

3. PJs! Oh, gosh, you guys, PJs is coming. I’m equal parts excited and exhausted already. I’ve got plans in place already this year to make it easier on me and less stressful than it was last year, and I’ve already got my eyes toward next year with tiny tweaks to prevent things that are tiny wrinkles in my plans this year. Last year, I thought I was doing a one time thing until right afterward. This year, I’m already thinking about next year before anyone even gets here.

The thing about PJs that makes it fun for me is that it’s my party. Whenever I find myself getting stressed out and a little freaked out about what if people hate this or what if people don’t like that or how will I possibly please everyone, I just remind myself that it’s my party. I’m not putting on a blog conference or facilitating a bloggy get together, I’m throwing PJs at TJ’s, which is my party, and I can be a good hostess and make sure my guests are comfortable and fed and reasonably accommodated, but when it comes down to it, I’m having friends over to come to my party. When it’s reframed like that, it suddenly shifts back to being fun to plan and I get all refreshed and enthusiastic again. I recommend everyone throw their own parties.

4. We’re MOVING. We’ve outgrown our house. I guess I don’t really have anything more to say than that. We’re not leaving Arizona, we can’t do that, we’re going to be at Luke until the end of time, probably. I don’t mind. This isn’t a bad place to live at all, and when Phil is out of the military and we eventually head back to the east coast, it will be with no small amount of bitter on my part.

We hope to be out of here as soon as March. I want to throw away everything we own and move with nothing. Not really, but I want to shed a lot of crap. Things we don’t use, things we have just because we think we’re supposed to have it, things we mean to use “someday,” things with misplaced sentimental value, BABY THINGS. I want it all to go. Anywhere. Not here. Not with us.

5. ONE LAST PENNY THING. She’s learning to dress herself. She goes into her bedroom and chooses a shirt and puts it on, but she doesn’t know how to put it on, not really. So she comes back out of her room “wearing” the shirt she’s chosen on top of whatever else she’s already wearing. She pulls the shirt over her head until her face comes through the neckhole, like a hood, or a scarf around her face, like CORNHOLIO, you know? And the sleeves just dangling down uselessly. And then she just GOES ABOUT HER BUSINESS with her toys and stuff. Completely seriously. I have no pictures, because if I get the camera, it tips her off that something isn’t right. You have to imagine it. IMAGINE IT.

 

Please don't act as though you don't have pellets, lady.

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11 Responses to “That deer is a sweater eater. He is on WOOL. -M.H.”

  1. By Kara on Jan 9, 2013

    Migraines suck. And I don’t even get the fancy vestibular ones. Strangely enough, it’s smells that trigger mine, most of the time. Like air fresheners, scented candles, and other fake smells that get put in just about everything. I was on Topomax for awhile, and I seriously felt like I was having mini-strokes, because it was a continual grasping for a word that I knew I knew but I couldn’t get my mouth to say the word. So, we now live in a scent free (for the most part) home and I’m the smell nazi lady at work who yells at people when they dare to light a candle in the office. It’s either that, or I throw up on their desk and make them drive me to the doctor’s office when their Harvest Apple candle triggers my migraine.

    Did you feed the giraffes at World Wildlife Zoo? They’re my favorite part!

  2. By Delicia on Jan 9, 2013

    Oh my God she is so beautiful.

  3. By Natalie on Jan 9, 2013

    Aw man, I love it when I neglect to look at Twitter for several hours and then I look and NEW POST FROM TJ!

  4. By Lawyerish on Jan 9, 2013

    I just love every post you write.

    Also, (a) I wish I were coming to PJs, and (b) I very nosily want to know who IS coming, so I can be all the more morose that I’m not.

    You know what’s weird? When I get a migraine, one of the things that happens is that I can’t think of words or express myself clearly. One time we called 911 because I couldn’t speak and I thought I was having a stroke, but no. That’s just how I do migraines. WTF, head?

  5. By Brooke on Jan 9, 2013

    I love Phil puns, Pennyholio, and PJs. Glad to hear that the migraines are in a good place for you. Also, I’m hereby inviting myself for a trip to the zoo with you guys to have my sweater eaten. I’ve never been, and Dan has no desire to go.

  6. By MegglesP on Jan 9, 2013

    Oh the medication. Oh GOD the medication. I hate that stuff. I mean, I love it, it helps my migraines, but sweet Jesus. I remember when I started on it and I could not form coherent thoughts. I could think about what I wanted to say in my head, but those were not the words coming out of my mouth.

    Penny continues to be delightful.

  7. By Cayt on Jan 9, 2013

    Stress triggers my migraines. I’m visiting family. I had three in a year and then two in two weeks since being here. I need to go home oh god I need to leave.

    Penny is adorable and I love the pictures of her with Phil feeding animals. Her hair is crazy and awesome!

  8. By susie on Jan 9, 2013

    What you are saying about your headaches, and how it affects language? That is how I feel when I can’t (or don’t) take my narcolepsy medicine. And even more how I feel when I am also pregnant/headachey. It is SO! FRUSTRATING! because my head is still filled with thoughts, but they don’t come out properly.

    But, whatever, pajama party! Soon!

  9. By Karen on Jan 9, 2013

    I want to thank you for sharing your experiences with us. I came here two years ago thinking it was a WoW blog – it was recommended by BRK. Instead, I found a funny, literate, courageous woman going through a REALLY DIFFICULT pregnancy and of course I had to hang in there with you. I am 70+ years old (just to establish my cred.), and in case you didn’t know, you have had a WAY HARDER than average last 24 months. That may sound silly, because in one way no one but you and Phil know what you have had to deal with, but you both handle it with such courage and humor, I thought you might appreciate the perspective from an outsider. I know some other parents have similar challenges, but MOST have many fewer. Of course I am a Penny fan, but who isn’t. I am also a big Kelly & Phil fan, if you ever run into Pointilliste on Nesingwary, say hello.

  10. By Karen on Jan 11, 2013

    Geeez – did I scare everyone off? I didn’t mean that to be the comment that ended all comments.

  11. By jodifur on Jan 16, 2013

    I’m going to give internet assvice, and I HATE internet assvice, but I think you are on the same med I’m on. I had the same side effect too when I upped dosage. I’m now on the highest dose you can be. Anyway, I take it before I go to sleep, and that side effect is MUCH BETTER. Maybe because it happens when I’m sleeping?

    Anyway, feel free to ignore.

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