Hospital Humor

Walking out of the hospital, through the cold evening air of our recently arrived cold front, I reflect on our time in the hospital room, and I can’t help but to smile and let out a bit of a chuckle, shaking my head ever so slightly.

We were all sitting around, chatting casually, occasionally commenting on a “Wheel of Fortune” puzzle, if we happened to look up in time to catch a new one.

My mom was across the room, facing me.

My grandma was to my left, and my opa was to my right (“grandpa” in German), still lying on the hospital bed.

Thus the memory begins:

My grandma is reading the label of a nut and seed butter I had brought with me, one which everyone found to be delicious.

As she reads, she pronounced “Celtic” with a soft c, and s sound.

Grandma: Pumpkin seeds, and Celtic sea salt… Celtic… Celtic sea salt

Opa, at the same time: I really like peanuts.

I look at my mom, and begin to chuckle silently, rolling my eyes.

Mom: What?

Hannah: I feel like I’m in a room with two kids: [I motion my arm toward my grandma] One’s practicing a tongue twister, [the other hand and a head nod toward my opa] the other’s saying just things he likes, “I Love peanuts…”

Opa, still continuing his list of likes: I like cashews,…

My mom and I look at each other again.

Hannah: You see?!

We both crack up quietly and calmly, but genuinely.

I continue for his list: I like Batman

Opa, still listing: I like Brazil nuts…

Mom : I like fire trucks

Mom and I are really laughing now.

Opa pauses ever so slightly, then adds: I even like Hannah

My mom and I glance at one another, and then at Opa to verify that we heard correctly, and then we all start to crack up together.

Opa: save the best for last

Chuckling continues all around, as all four of us have joined in on the joke of how silly everything is in the moment, and the love that we all have for one another – it is fun to play with those who love us.

Post-a-day 2019

Third Grade

And, some nights, you begin telling your mom about various memories from third grade – a class you’ve always remembered as one of your favorites – and she ends up telling you that it is time for you to go to bed, because you have become a bit of a blubbering mess of surprise emotions…

I mean, I do, anyway… 😛

I had no idea how much negative emotion I had stemming out of that class…., a lot of which came from that teacher.

I’ve always loved that teacher.

Tonight, in recalling these incidents and the way they made me feel at the time, and how they somehow exploded me with tears tonight, I said to my mom that, as a teacher, I never want to make my students feel that way – embarrassed, incompetent, incapable, unworthy…, unloved.

I hadn’t ever had these particular incidents in mind, but perhaps these third grade memories have played a somewhat significant role in my open expression of love to my students.

I’m not sure a single student of mine could say honestly that he/she thinks I don’t love them – they all know that I do.

As if my actions weren’t clear enough, my constant verbal expression kind of makes it too hard to miss – but my actions, most likely would say, are already sufficient for them to experience and to know that I love them.

My mom said that it is merely part of life, and that I, therefore, necessarily will end up making a student feel that way at some point… I need merely make sure I clean up the situation immediately, whenever it does happen, whenever the student is distraught by my words or actions…

Part of me is terrified at the idea, but part of me feels like I already do a version of this.

I tell kids constantly that they are wrong or have done the wrong thing.

At the beginning of the school year, their faces look momentarily panicked, until they realize that I have clearly put no grade of them as people into my comment – I mean exactly what I have said, and only that which I have said.

In a rather short time, students don’t even flinch at my words that, traditionally, when coming from a teacher, end up embarrassing the student and making him/her feel stupid or inadequate or [insert upsetting self-identity adjective here], because they realize that I love them and that my words have nothing to do with that love dissipating – I tell the kids they have something wrong, because I love them and I want them to learn the right ways, which happens to require them to learn, too, what is wrong and how to fix it.

And they always learn how to fix it, and are praised for their success – their joy always being evident.

In short, I might make a student feel inadequate, but the feeling lasts no longer than a few seconds, before being replaced by something amazing instead.

What was missing for me in all of these memories, was the follow-up, the release of my feelings of inadequacy… the teacher left me to be embarrassed, and so I stayed that way onward and upward in school.

It kind of sucked.

However, if it, in fact, plays a reasonably large role in my expression of love toward my own students, then, perhaps, I needed the negative experiences for myself, in order to be able to love my students so well…

And, therefore, if it does end up being inevitable that I will leave students feeling the ways I felt in third grade at these incidents, perhaps it is merely so that they, in turn, can go forward in life to love even more powerfully than they can love at present.

You know what I mean?

Post-a-day 2019

Booty Work

*** Warning: Bathroom-related material following******

When did you learn to wipe your bottom?

At my sister’s today, I was asked by my niece’s little girlfriend if I could come help my niece.

I went to see what help was needed, to find my niece sitting on the toilet at a silly angle, looking happily but pleadingly at me.

“Can you help me wipe?” she asks in her high-pitched little girl voice of immanent innocence.

I consider, and then reply, “You can do it yourself.”

I stood in that very bathroom with her months beforehand, while she used the potty and wiped herself confidently, post-urination…. (and she even had an adorable discussion with me about how her mommy gets mad at her for using so much toilet paper.)

“Noo-oh,” she counters.

“Yes, I think you can… you know how to do it yourself – you can do it,” I say comfortably, wondering if this is just something she does or if she actually does not wipe her own butt yet, doubting the likelihood of the latter while hoping for the former to be true.

After an ever-so-slight pause, she replies, “Okay,” and begins to pull off some toilet paper.

I tell her that she doesn’t need so much toilet paper – she pulled off a lot right at first – and remind her to flush the toilet.

Then I walk away, as she starts to reach back comfortably, toilet paper in hand.

I rejoin the adults in the back, and ask skeptically, “A—- knows how to wipe her own butt, right?” and I quickly explain the scene that just went down, just in case she doesn’t.

My sister confirms my niece’s initial statement, and heads immediately inside to go help.

(Actually, first, she told me to go do it, that it was my job, and I replied easily and jokingly, “No, I don’t have sex, so I don’t have kids – that’s all on you, girl,” and everyone cracked up and offered immediate commentary on how no wonder they all have kids, etc.)

The discussion then goes on among the women about the various poop schedules of their children, their husbands, and themselves, as well as how the youngest children still cannot wipe their own butts, and so actually hold it all day, and rush to go poo when they get home in the afternoon.

……

On my way home tonight, I called my mom, explained the situation, and re-asked when I learned to wipe my own butt, wanting in earnest to know.

(When I got to the part about my niece asking me to wipe her, my mom asked if I gagged – I have extreme sensitivities in certain areas – and I told her how it hadn’t bothered me at all, actually, because I never once considered actually wiping her butt for her… we both got a bit of a kick out of that.) 😛

She definitely didn’t remember, but she knew for sure that I could do it by the time I went off to kindergarten – when exactly in pre-school I started doing it, she wasn’t sure, but she knew it happened in there somewhere.

She was sure that it wasn’t something she liked doing, so she would have taught me as soon as possible to do it myself… unsurprisingly. 😛

Therefore, considering the respective ages of the kids today, I remained rather surprised that they do not yet wipe their own butts.

Perhaps their moms just don’t mind it…, but I knew I wasn’t going to do it for her.

Babies are one thing… a child sitting on a toilet, talking to me is another altogether.

Post-a-day 2019

So much for fair…

Can I just say that it sometimes feels totally unfair that certain boys end up having the bodies of men (and girls, the bodies of women) when they are still in the slightly awkward phase of semi-idiocy that is high school?

There they are, prime adult physique, the epitome of evolution doing its darndest to make sure the species continues onward in the world, surrounded by various stages of true boyhood and immaturity, that being physical, psychological, and mental immaturity….. and yet, they look to all onlookers to be men…., ready to stand for a modern Michelangelo or Botticelli…

And, usually, they have no idea the effect they can have on other people.

Sure, some, unfortunately, are harassed by the worst of breeding, and therefore have a sense of something being askew… but, for the most part, they tend only to think of themselves as doing well, as being blessed with good genes and a good bodily development.

The fact that their minds are so far behind makes it hard on the adults around them, and the fact that their bodies are so far ahead makes it hard on the youth around them.

They also, somehow, serve as not so much a reminder, but as a calling out of the fact that so many men these days are not maintaining and hosting such healthy bodies as these man-boys (and the same with women and the woman-girls)… the prime of the physical body is arriving so soon, and lost before they are even fully developed in the brain, it sometimes feels… (for the average, anyway)…

In a way, it is a blessing.

And, in a way, it kind of totally sucks to have to be around…

Anyway…, just some thoughts for tonight.

Sweet dreams, World! 😉

Post-a-day 2019

Collaboration

My mom and I had our first glimpse today of how our collaboration on my photography could look…

And it looks awesome.

We have similar taste, yet different approaches to it and ideas and perspectives for it, so, working together is easy, yet always unique and filled with wonderful ideas neither of us would have gotten on our own, and that most people never consider.

We have a few foundational bits now, after today’s collaboration, going through clothing and fabrics, and I am confident that we can make this happen… very well, and somewhat soon.

I have a lot of the teaching work I kind of need to do at the moment, but my efficiency there is improving significantly by the day or two, so I’ll be able to put time and mental a leggier and physical effort into the photos my mom and I will be crating together in collaboration.

I’m delighted and looking forward to it.

And, I think she is, too. /)

So, yay!

Post-a-day 20198

Hairy

Does anyone else ever feel that men growing out their facial hair, just to show that they are men and not boys – I’m thinking of young teachers or coaches especially, but this applies to more men than just them – is stupid?

It supposedly makes them more manly.

It suddenly occurred to me, walking up to work this morning, that m the female equivalent would be women not shaving their legs and underarms, just to show that they are women and not girls.

By the male standard, then, my not shaving my legs and underarms would make me more womanly, as only a woman could grow such hair – girls just can’t do it the same, you see…

Therefore, I am more respectable, because I have hair on my legs and under my arms…

Or am I?

I certainly call bs on the whole affair, men’s facial hair included.

You are a man, when you are a man, and facial hair’s growing ability does not affect that.

Likewise, you are a woman, when you are a woman, and no hair growth affects that.

Hair is simply hair.

Being a man or woman is independent of such a minute factor, and I just wish people could get that, and stop doing the stupid ‘facial hair makes me look like a man’ thing…, because it typically emphasizes the individual’s youth, creating an opposite effect from that which was desired.

Just my thoughts early this morning, as the sun rose (which, too, is a funny idea).

Post-a-day 2019

Mother-Daughter

“Do you see me ever having kids?”

Mom considers for a few moments, then answers in all honesty, “Yeah,” nodding her head, which is tilted to one side, an after-effect of consideration.

“…I mean,” I whoosh my hands downward together, going from just in front of my chest to around the tops of my lazily outstretched legs, “… having kids.”

We both smile at this as I say, “Which is different from just having kids…”

I have discussed the idea of adoption much, and my mom has participated in some of these conversations, so she knows what I mean, and why I clarified.

We share a few moments of silent chuckling before she renews her, “Yeah,” and then we smile and chuckle silently some more.

We are at my friend’s baby shower.

There have been various games and activities throughout the evening, and she and I are sitting at a table over to the side, mostly away from the current conversation and action of the party.

She is filling in one side of the paper, on which was sentence starters regarding wishes and thoughts we want to share with the baby-to-be.

I have been casually adding to the other side on the paper, on which we had done a baby name game in which we took only letters from the first names of the mother and father, and had to come up with as many names as possible.

Some of mine were just words, but I wrote them anyway, as it helped the brainstorming process along, as well as added a funny aspect to the game.

(Examples of words: Barista, Tank, Narita, Kirin, Stink, Bad)

Though we weren’t in the current action of the party, we were enjoying ourselves, and also enjoying that we got to do it together.

When the gift-opening began, we stood by where we had been sitting, so we could see over people’s heads to the gifts and my friend and her husband, but without actually having to go sit in the mix with everyone else.

Neither one of us discussed this, of course – we each just did it naturally.

I think that part of it is a matter of our being able to comment freely on things, without having to worry about offending anyone, on the likely chance that we find something silly or tacky, or that we are reminded of something absurd.

Even if we each were alone at such a party, we likely still would end up in a similar location relative to the crowd and gift-opening area.

A bit later, just as I was stepping away to go floss-brush-floss to put my aligners back in, I commented quietly to my mom, “I love how, even though no one is here to hear is, we always have a running commentary going on over here.”

Before I’d even said the word ‘commentary’, we were both already laughing silently, but heartily, and she was nodding her head almost vigorously.

But it’s true – we always have a running commentary on things.

No, we don’t say it aloud when it could offend, and no, it isn’t always bad commentary – not at all.

It is merely commentary.

Usually, though, it is commentary that sends us both into fits of giggles at least a handful of times in an evening.

Until last night, I hadn’t realized that my mom and I shared this trait.

Yes, we share many things, and we have many similarities, but I had never noticed this one until last night.

Perhaps it was due to the fact that we had enough to say that we knew at least half the room would not find funny, and so dropped to more of a whisper on several comments, bringing attention for me to the fact that we were doing it in the first place.

And mind you, we don’t have nasty comments we’re exchanging – they just aren’t always event-appropriate.

For example, some people were discussing Disney Princesses and how they have advanced in diversifying the princesses, and how they might advance next.

My friend who is pregnant loves Disney, and had commented about dressing up as a Disney Princess before.

My mom and I exchanged the idea of, ‘Guess she can’t do that right now,’ and chuckled.

‘Yeah, teen pregnancy princess just doesn’t sound right..,’ and our silent chuckles increase, tears now considering making appearances in our eyes…

And then, upon further consideration, we add, ‘Unless Disney wants to take a big step in furthering its diversity, and somehow have a young, super-huge-pregnant Princess…., do a Juno plus Disney Princess… but I don’t think they’re ready for that one yet…’

‘Not for a while…’

Yes, the ideas are absurd.

No, we are not mean-spirited with them at all.

And, since people don’t necessarily know that we are merely brainstorming and thinking of different things, and then simply sharing about them with one another, they could become quickly offended, thinking we are trying to be rude or nasty in some way.

We love Disney and Disney Princesses.

We also know lots about the ideas to progress the diversity of them, and the struggles Disney has had with complaints regarding them.

We support the movement of diversifying the Princesses, but we also love the original Princesses, too, and understand and accept the reasoning behind them all.

We also find humor in just about anything – not in a bad way, but in a genuine way… we do not demean through the humor we find, but typically find increased fondness of the topic after finding that extra tidbit of humor in it.

Anyway, I’ll not bother with the explanations anymore – I notice that I’m worried someone will be offended – I already know that my thoughts offend people, and that’s a big part of why I tend not to share them with most people.

Perhaps that’s how we discover truly the people who love us: by sharing our thoughts with them, and their still showing up in life, without judging us harshly and leaving us out to dry, so to speak.

I’ve said for years and years that judging is natural for us – it is only human.

The difference comes in when we recognize that it is only a judgment, and not necessarily the truth.

At that point, we can choose freely whether to accept the automatic judgement we have made, or whether to set it aside and be open to discovering who and what a person truly is.

When people tell me, “Don’t judge me,” just before they do or say something seemingly silly or stupid or absurd, I often let them know something akin to,

‘I’m definitely going to judge you – I can’t not – but I won’t hold it against you in any way.’

Yeah….

Anyway, I’m off to bed.

I slept half the day today… my mom woke me by knocking on my door at 9am (I’d gone to bed by 11:30pm at the latest), I was tired most of the morning and midday, and then I passed out on the sofa around 3pm, only to wake up to eat some peaches a while later, and then fall right back asleep until around 6pm… and I’m still exhausted right now, struggling to get through this.

I guess my early morning workouts are taking more out of me than I thought, and sleep really is somewhat like a gasoline tank or rechargeable battery, able to be replenished at any time down the road, but demanding refueling after so many days of running on low-power mode… if that makes sense…

Anyway, goodnight, World… hasta mañana.

Post-a-day 2019