Archive for February, 2010


February 18, 2010

Reagan has a friend, S., that is a foreign exchange student  from the Ukraine.  Yep, poor girl came all the way from the cold Ukraine to the cold mid-west.  One of S’s friend got sent to Hawaii.  I’m sure she’s not jealous at all!

S. has a really good grasp of English.  Occasionally, though, you have to explain a word or phrase  to her.  Like “spazz” or “ditch” or “back door virgin.”

Is it wrong that I’ve now nicknamed “S.” as “BDV?”

Reagan and BDV are both going to prom this year and I have the joy of taking them both shopping later this  month.  Prom, already?   But Rea’s still my baby!   In honor of the upcoming prom I’m trying to start a new slang phrase:

ON like a PROM DRESS!” 

As, in “Boy, I can’t get the lid off this jar of pickles.  It’s ‘ON like a PROM DRESS.”   Or, wow, you are WWAAYYYYY  too young to have sex.  That dress better stay ON like a PROM DRESS.”   

All joking aside,  Reagan and I have been talking about sex and relationships a lot.  Her boyfriend’s parents have set up some  rules, such as they are allowed to hug goodbye, and he can put his arm around her shoulders, but “NO TOUCHING” and “NO sex before marriage.”

Reagan told me about the birds and the bees convo they had with E.   Then she told me that everyone at her school already thinks they are having sex.  I asked “WHY???!!!”  And she said, “you know, because he’s a junior.” 

I guess ALL juniors have sex?  (At least that’s what the kids think.  Of course, as an adult, I think they all think “EVERYONE  BUT ME IS! HAVING! SEX!!!”)

Which, of course, logically means “NOT EVERYONE IS HAVING SEX!!”

The hardest part of the conversation is getting across the idea that I simultaneously think she’s wonderful, responsible, smart, etc, but still NOT READY to have sex.   It seems that every teenager thinks he/she is the most mature teenager ever.   (And, as such, is READY to have sex.  Because, you know, all the other LESS mature teenagers are doin’ it. ) 

Ironically, the mere fact that they think they are ready to have sex is PROOF that they aren’t ready to have sex!

Luckily, Rea has said that she is too young when I’ve broached the subject of the pill (She responded “Geez, mom, I’m only 15!  I”m not going to have sex anytime soon!”)  Which is a relief.  I’ve stressed to her that I don’t think she’s ready, that she couldn’t support a child, and I’m keen on reminding her of her goals -going away to college, travelling, lots of fun life experiences-which are a lot more difficult to reach with a baby in tow.

I should know.  LOL.  Not that I regret having my kids, they are wonderful.  But as a returning student, it’s WAYYYY harder (and less fun) attending college when you are simultaneously dealing with a job, a spouse and kids.   For example, this last week I had a test, a project, multiple writing assignments, a quiz and I had to chauffeur kids around town, celebrate Valentine’ day, bake cookies (okay, I will admit that was a “want” rather than a “need” but it’s how I relax)  and I had to take Taylor to the doctor.

Speaking of Taylor, he gained 7 1/2 pounds!   Very good news.   I really think this whole weight loss thing was a way for him to grasp for some independence and autonomy.  It was something he could control.   (And his parents, in his mind, could do nothing about.)

Luckily for me, he hates going to the doctor.  (Which, isn’t pleasant when you are with him at the doctor’s office and he’s sighing and rolling his eyes and grumbling about how stupid this all is.)   His hatred of going to the doctor leaves him with two choices:

Lose weight and go to the doctor more, for more invasive tests


Gain weight and stop going to the doctor (other than for normal check-ups.)

This puts, as they say, “the ball in his court.”   I feel a little manipulative in that  by making those the only two options, I’ve pretty much made it certain he will chose option 2.   However, I also think that option 1 is not punitive, but a natural consequence if he continued to lose weight.

(He, of course, thinks there should be an option 3, in which I leave him be, but I just can’t do that.)

Anyway, the 7 1/2 lb weight gain makes me think it’s working.  I’m also working on addressing some familial issues within our household.  My husband has been kind enough to start a new routine in which he makes breakfast for the family every weekday.  Chris works long hours, which makes a family dinner every night impossible.   (The kids and I eat together, but Chris gets home a couple of hours later) Breakfast together is more do-able.    Chris and Taylor have been going out to eat together on Tuesday nights (Chris is off at 6 pm on Tuesdays.)  And I have been making Taylor chat more, even if he doesn’t seem to enjoy it, LOL.  

I also hope to get Taylor more involved in grocery shopping and food preparation.   I think it’s important that he has healthy eating habits and I do worry that the focus has now become “get him to eat as many calories as possible!”  Which, while it may have been necessary at the time, is not the healthiest eating pattern.    (As evidenced by my 20 lb weight gain, LOL!)

Anyway, I think the situation is resolving itself and, hopefully, will end up being a positive, due to a renewed emphasis on family.  Thanks to all who have shown concern; I was really fearful posting about it, that people would think my son has horrible issues and that I am a terrible parent.   -Jennifer

She went to grade school with him.

February 12, 2010

Yes, the following conversation really took place, via IM:

Me:  Chris told Rea last night that she can date E.

did I tell you that?

He also told her that teenage boys have boners like 23 hours a day

or maybe 24, I can’t remember

SS:   ahh
Me:   That was part of the explanation on why she can’t go on car dates, LOL
SS:   Well, I am glad he agreed.
Me:   Rea’s friend Z’s mom friended me on facebook

and I noticed we have a mutual friend


and I just sent her a message asking her how she knows him

SS:   A woman?

We went to school with?

Me:   But now if she answers, like, “we worked together” or “went to school together” and asks how I knew/know him….
SS:   Oh sorry,

I don’t know who he is?

Me:   Do I answer “I fucked him in 10th grade” or what?

okay, that was lewd

but she’s like, religious

SS:   I don’t remember that

or him

Me:   Yah, you didn’t know him

but, like it would be pretty funny, especially since she’s friends with a TON of P’ville moms.

SS:  Well yes, you should say that then.

Me:   If I just said it casually…

they would all think I was nuts

SS:    A new book called “Laid” just came out in the bookstores. It is an amazing compilation of stories written by teenagers and young adults about their sexual experiences.

I am quoting.

Me:   And maybe it was like 12th grade, because he was born in 73 (me in 71) and I would hate to think I had sex with. like, an 8th grader.

Because that would just be gross.

SS:   How did you know him?
Me:    Oh, I dated him for awhile.
SS:    Well, aside from the fucking

but how did you meet him?

Me:    I broke up with him because he asked what the word “heinous” meant

and he also asked me if I had ever had sex with “a black guy.”

Those two things combined, poor grammar and racism

SS:   How heinous
Me:    Yes, not a good combo
SS:   ahh
Me:    So I could always tell her that
SS: yes

maybe she will ask him first how he knows you

MeWe had a sexual relationship until he used incorrect grammar and made a racist comment.”
SS:    If they are good friends
Me:  Because then you know, she would be like, “Well, Jennifer may have had sex as a teenager

but at least she had STANDARDS.”

SS:   yes

This is a mystery shop: Call the spousal abuse hotline and pose as a woman seeking counseling for abuse. This will be a recorded shop through our xxxxx system with very little shop form to fill out. We’re wanting to know how the call center responds to your needs and what advice they give.

Me:   Wow, that’s the craziest mystery shop ever
SS:  Yeah, sorry, didn’t mean to change the subject
Me:  Oh, that’s okay.

Now, maybe if we had had sex someplace weird it would make a better story

SS:     and if you told the moms that detail, too.
Me:   like, “‘CF?’ Oh, I knew him because we fucked in the back of the van on the way home from a church lock-in.”
Me:   Now, see this is the kind of thing I could blog about

but I worry about people judging me

I used to not worry about that

being less anonymous sucks

SS:  You should blog about it.


Me:  I just now, in rereading this as a blog post,

realize that you asked “What if she asks him first how he knows you?

and I had totally not caught that the first time 

SS:  Are you going to include the part about the dremel and how I can drill holes in shit?

Me:   And now I’m like “holy shit!”

SS:   ahh

Me:    What if he tells her I’m some huge slutbag?  That would really suck! 

SS:    Yeah, hopefully he will be tactful.

Me:   Like my blog post?

February 9, 2010

Over the last few months my son Taylor has lost a lot of weight, around 25-30 lbs, going from 155-160, down to 130, a pretty low weight for someone that is 5’11.”     Once I noticed (sadly, I didn’t notice until he’d lost about 20 lbs, because I’m a terrible mother unobservant like that), I scheduled a doctor appointment for him and he’s had a battery of tests.  He’s not suffering from Krohn’s, irritable bowel syndrome, gluten intolerance or any of the common causes of weight loss.  

It’s odd  because he hasn’t been ill or  even had any symptoms outside of the weight loss. 

He’s been to the pediatrician 3-4 times, the hospital for blood work and the pediatric gastroenterologist, who “threatened” him with more invasive tests (e.g.  a tube down the throat or up the bum) if he didn’t keep a food diary for the nutritionist.  Which is our next stop  in the unexplained weight loss tour.  

Last night he showed me his food diary; surprisingly, for someone that protested that “this is stupid,” he did a really good job of writing down the foods that he ate. 

Unfortunately, in the “amount” column for each item he wrote “ALL.” 

Yes, somehow he thought the nutritionist could figure out the calorie count of fried shrimp, spaghetti, or an omelet, based up on the amount of “ALL.”

Which begs the question, is my 16 year old exceptionally dumb, along with frighteningly thin?  

No, really, he’s a smart kid, but the common sense, well, it’s lacking.

I honestly don’t think there’s anything wrong with him.  Well, at least not physically.   Part way through this process he did say that he had “wanted to lose the weight.”   But, when your son HATES going to the doctor, well, it’s a little hard to discern the motivation to a sudden confession that he likely feels would get him out of some blood work.  (He’s a needle hater, that one.) 

Plus, it’s odd in that he wasn’t overweight to begin with, and he’s not a vain child.  He wears blue jeans and t-shirts every day.   Cares about good hygiene, but not overly much about his appearance.  He’s the kind of child that plays chess, carries a rubik’s cube and wears shirts with science puns on them.

Nevertheless, he’s also the sort of child that likes a challange.  That worked really hard to solve that rubik’s cube in less than a minute; who becomes mildly obsessive about something (right now it’s Dr. Who) until a new obsession comes along.   

I fear the weight loss falls into that catagory.  For awhile, for whatever reason, he decided that he wanted to NOT eat very much, to see if he could do it.

Or… maybe it’s a rebellious thing.  He has a squeaky wheel for a sister.   She’s wonderful, but she DEMANDS the attention, and would tell me, from the time she was three or four, that we shouldn’t have any more babies because she “wouldn’t get enough attention.”  Reagan is a loud, vivacious child that makes friends (and enemies) easily.  Taylor is quiet; he has friends, the same friends for years, but is rarely the center of attention.  (He definitely seems to prefer it that way.) 

He’s always been an obedient child, my “easy kid.”

And maybe we’ve taken that for granted.  Maybe this weight loss was a “pay attention to me” ploy, especially since food is a big deal in our house. 

My husband has been getting up and making the kids breakfast every morning.  I’ve been cooking dinner most nights (and per doctor’s orders, I’ve been serving “all the bad stuff,” lots of protein, lots of fats-plus a side of veggies and a fruit, thank you very much. )   And he hasn’t lost any more weight.  But, he hasn’t really gained any either. 

(Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for myself. LOL.)

It’s a mystery, and while I love to read a good one, I hate dealing with one in my personal life.  I just want this to be over (even if I never have a “real” answer) and for everything to be okay.   A mere “okay” has never sounded so great.

February 8, 2010

Sunday while my daughter was at the mall (surely NOT flirting with boys) trying on zebra and rose printed pants (1 pair pants + 2 patterns = yikes) my bff, Mary Sue, and I went to see “An Education,” an Oscar nominated film starring Peter Sarsgaard.    The film received a good review in our local paper and is the story of a 30 something man (like me, Peter Saarsgaard  was born in 1971, so he’s barely clinging to the 30’s, LOL) who seduces a 16 year old girl, Jenny.

We arrived at the theatre about 15 minutes early and sat in the top row.  Looking around, Mary Sue said “What’s with all the elderly men?”   Yes, scattered around the theatre, each sitting  ALONE, were 12-15 white-haired gents.  And us.  

Mary Sue was pondering what might have drawn them all to the theatre.   I wondered if they were expecting a Lolita-esque tale and found myself worrying about how many might be on the sex offender registry (of course, being in our 30’s, I doubt we would be a draw to these particular gentlemen.) 

The movie was good and, surprisingly,  for a tale of seduction, it had no actual sex scenes.  It was more a story of a con man and how he seduced a girl with the promise of an exciting, sophisticated life. (Not sex.)

However, one scene may be the freakiest thing I have ever seen in a movie.  Jenny, upon reaching the age of 17, decides she is ready to have a sexual relationship; David (Peter Sarsgaard’s character) arranges a weekend in Paris.  In their hotel room, wearing a negligée,  Jenny approaches the bed but David stops, exclaims “Wait a minute,” and heads to the bathroom.  He returns, banana in hand, and says “Since it’s your first time and it will be messy, I thought we’d use this.”

In his hand was 

a banana




I’m not sure why I find this so, well, freaky.   I just can’t get over it.  Whhhhhhy?  Why would anyone think that was a good idea?   

They didn’t end up having sex that night (duh?)

But she didn’t flee in horror and did (later) end up having sex with him (which happened off screen, much to the disappointment of my theatre-mates.) 

Which may be freakier than the banana itself.

I liked the main character, Jenny; I could see why she might be conned by David and his promise of glamour and fun; however, I just can’t get past the banana.  

(Or the fact that he wanted to call her “Minnie” and for him to call her “heffalump” or “gumplywink,” something like that.)

Obviously, the skeeviest part was a 30-something year old man picking up an obvious school girl (when they first met she was in her school uniform, carrying her cello and actually looked her age.)

Hmm.. in fact, my own 15-year-old looks older than the school girl Jenny.

I guess I should be thankful that Reagan has a nice, age-appropriate boyfriend. (Which, from the point of a view of  a mother is maybe worse than no boyfriend at all, LOL.)

Nevertheless, this movie made me want to warn her about all the “bad guys” out there. I want to remind her to follow her instincts, not to doubt herself, as I did when I was her age, with fairly disastrous consequences.

She thinks she’s so grown up, that she can handle any situation, that no harm can happen to her.   She doesn’t realize that those with poor intentions can also be handsome and charming (and may be wielding bananas.)