My pancakes bring all the boys to the yard…

Right, so I don’t cook well and by “pancakes”, I mean boobs.  Flat boobs.

I had my first mammogram today (jazz hands).  Yep.

First off, I have fears on the boob front.  I am big and my boobs are really big.  They are a cup size of the alphabet that a scrap of fabric cannot contain (e.g.G).  “H” on a bad day.  And Mom had boob cancer which she kicked to the curb handily, but she’s smaller and healthier and richer and retired.  And lucky.  And did what the doctors told her to do.  It takes a village.

Anyway, so big fears to go with my big boobs because of family history and my seemingly chronic fatigue and weird bumps on them and all that jazz.

Mammogram.  Jazz hands!

Second, I had no idea what to expect.  Now I do.  No biggie.

I took some pictures.  The first two I took accidentally.  Not sure how it happened, but okay.  I can roll with that.

Here is where you take your top off.   I may have cropdusted this room a little bit as my nerves make me toot.  And I had homemade burritos last night so you can guess the wake of stank I left behind me.

dressingroom

 

My head’s down in shame here for aforementioned cropdusting.

 

floors

These were some handy instructions (get it? handy? eh? eh?) posted in the dressing room.  There is no hand-washing involved in a mammogram, but thankfully, this sign explains that washing your hands means washing your hands.  There was some pit-washing however, in my case, because DAMN.  Burritos + nerves + not allowed to wear deodorant = B. effin O.  And no little boob-fondling xray lady needs to smell that crap.

howtowash

And lastly, here she is…  the Squishomatic 4000…

mammogramer

It didn’t hurt.   I hear the little-boobed ladies have more trouble with it.  For me, it was more of a… plop.  There you go.  Get to squishing.

Now the hard part… WAITING.  I hear tell that a lot of first mammograms require follow ups because they are trying to figure out if all your little booby-quirks are normal and not dangerous, but that seems pretty crazy-making in light of the fear machine that is steadily pumping worries into my brain.  My doctor swears she is going to call me tomorrow, mostly because she felt really bad that last time I went in for blood work it took her TWO MONTHS  and FOUR PHONE CALLS to get her to tell me my results.  Of course, in light of that experience, I am understandably doubtful as to her potential to deliver on her promise.

But she damn well better or I will go all bitch on her ass.

xo

Well, any old excuse to be a bitch will do.

So, I have not watched Oprah since she went and tried to be her own network, but I was browsing around on the TV’s guide and saw that she was going to be discussing past life regression on some show.

Wait wait hold up, before I get to that, can I just tell you that I believe Oprah has made a terrible, really ginormous, bad mistake naming her network OWN?  For realz, people, because we all already feel just a teensy bit owned.  And she’s calling us out on it.  She has so much money she gives cars to theaters full of people.  I, however, am too broke to even win a car from Oprah because it would require travel and hotels and tickets and not working for a day.  At any rate, she would have been a lot better off naming her network OWW (Oprah Winfrey World) or NOW (Network of Oprah Winfreyness) or WIO (Whatever, It’s Oprah) or WOW (Wow) or virtually anything besides her owning some shit.  She has a whole bunch of people working for her, right?  Like, the best and the brightest, I would assume.  And access to test audiences and survey people?  You have to know that someone, somewhere along the way must have felt a little uncomfortable with Oprah OWNing it, but I bet they were just too afraid to say anything because you don’t want to look like a whiney ass in THAT meeting when everyone else is all, “oh yes, Oprah, that sounds wonderful, but Carl over here is afraid that someone might take it wrong that the richest lady in America wants to own OWN.”  I guess the intention could be about “owning” yourself or your life or whathaveyou, but there’s no divorcing the word own from its most common meaning.

And I believe the ratings for OWN could maybe prove me out.  Amirite?

So anyway, I caught a blurb about a show on past life regression and set my DVR to record, stat, because hello?  How do you NOT watch that?  But when I went to watch the show it was about some lady I had never heard of who was saying some kind of really wacky stuff about shadows and light chasers, so I held my channel-changing hand back a minute.  I admit, I did expect something ultra new age involving light sabers.

Apparently, this Debbie Ford person that Oprah was interviewing has written some books about embracing the shadows that live in all our souls.  And I have shadows.  Like, at the end of the day, it is probably fair to say that I am a bit of a bitch.  No, really.  That is not to say that I am also not a nice or good person, it’s just to say that the word “bitchy” is not entirely inappropriate with regards to my personality, on occasion.

I have struggled with it –  this being bitchy business.  I mean, it’s a terrible thing to be so of course I agonize often about what to do to cure myself of being a bitch.  Who wants to be a bitch?  Plus, it really pisses me off when someone calls me one.  Most of my friends never experience my bitchiness (because I like them?), but my husband does (no escape).  My coworkers do (insufferable).  Random strangers who cross me (mistake!) and people at the cable company sure as shit do (obvs).  I tell myself that I am assertive or direct or honest, and those things are true, for sure.  (Not honest in the “gee, you look so ugly with that new haircut” sort of honest, because I’m not a bad person), but you know, you never really have to wonder if I’m mad at you or not.  You definitely will know if I am mad at you.  It will be clear the moment you step over the line with me and you may get smacked-the-hell back onto your side of the line.

Let me be clear, though, I am not some sort of feelings-assassin or anything.  I do not lay in wait and look for opportunities to snipe at people or attack out of the blue and say cruel things – that is not the sort of bitch I am talking about here.  I am talking about the kind of person who is good and decent at heart, but ornery and not willing to take your shit.  You know, the kind of woman who is getting real. sick. of your shit.  That kind of bitch.  As much as I try to overcome my bitchiness, I just can’t seem to be NOT a bitch.  The harder I try, the more I remain the same.

But here is this Debbie Ford person talking about embracing your dark side.  What?

Oh boy does THIS sound like a good idea!  Clearly, in the near future I will be trying to track down one of her books, because if someone can let me off the hook, that’d be great.  And how did I not know about her before?  I don’t really travel in self-help circles as a rule, so it’s not completely inexplicable that the existence of these books would escape me, but I do get around a bit – enough to think I would have heard at least a little about books that give you permission to be a bitch.  If that’s what they say.

Let’s hope that’s what they say.

Actually, if I’m completely honest, I might travel in self-help circles a teensy bit as my mother is a psychologist and a certified smarty pants who probably has read every book in the self-help library.  But I don’t listen to her too much because…

Wait wait hold up.  Huh.

Now HERE is a crossroads.

Do I tell you about my mother?  Do I assume that I will blog with the aegis of an unknown and unread blogger forever or do I assume that someday it will matter that I wrote, not necessarily flatteringly, about my mother for all on the interwebs to read?

That is quite a dilemma.

Suffice it to say that the rest of that unfinished sentence would, whether I intended it to or not, make my mother uncomfortable at a minimum and possibly really hurt and/or angry with me.  Which might make me a bitch.

Anyhoo, stream of consciousness is really a lot of fun, by the way, but let me circle back for a second and inform you that Debbie Ford, a person that I never knew existed until yesterday, actually died about a week ago, so if you know who she is or have read her books, I’m sorry to be the one to tell you.  She had cancer and the cancer won.

And not to make light of it (truly), but I heard Norm MacDonald tell a joke once about dying wherein he stated that in his opinion, one does not lose a battle to cancer, because if one dies from it, the cancer also dies from it, so in fact it’s a tie.  He has a point.

But I really am not making a joke about Debbie Ford dying of cancer.  It’s not funny, it’s sad.   That said, I cannot control where my brain goes.  Although, I probably could control where my fingers go because I don’t type on a Ouija board, but I chose to not do so does that make me a bitch?

deskshelf2

Meanwhile, here’s what it looks like when I watch OWN while working.

xo

If menstruation bothers you, stop now…

How is it that I can go eons without a real period and then right after I pull the trigger on a long-overdue pelvic exam… I turn into a hallway of the Overlook Hotel?

Y’all know by now that I have health problems (or you could know that if you went back and read some old posts – not that I’m suggesting you do that because BOR-ING – but since you could know it, I’m going to assume you do).  But none of my health problems are diagnosed (well, not none, some of them were diagnosed a long time ago).  However, being self-employed, chunky and having health problems pretty much means that unless I have a husband with benefits, I can’t get no satisfaction benefits.  I have a husband now, but due to various layoffs and general market economy-ness, we went quite a while without benefits.  I would like to tell you that I am responsible enough to continue seeing a gynecologist without benefits, but I am not.

See, I got it into my head that if I went to the doctor a lot and if the doctor found lots of issues, that I would never again be able to get coverage for those issues.  This idea was reinforced when I had an eyeball issue a while back.  Right before I got married, i.e. right before the day I was supposed to wear a white, poofy dress made of tulle and fairy dust – a day when glasses would have been very-horribly-much NOT what I wanted to wear because I don’t look cute in glasses, I look dumb, I developed a spot on my eye that hurt when I wore contacts.  It was a Saturday and I was all freaked out because, you know, impending nuptial doom and such, so I flipped through the phone book (okay, looked it up on the internet) and found this little guy who was actually open.  He was, however, Korean and did not speak English.  Apparently, on Buford Highway – a very diversely ethnic street in this town – you can find eye doctors that work on Saturdays.  So Eye Dr. Korean squirts shit in my eye in sort of an attack-style of doctoring, peers through various magnifying things at said ball of eye, and says in broken English, “damage cornea, put drops, no contacts several weeks” and sends me on my way.  No idea what sort of damage was done, but I was still psyched that it was a “drops for a few weeks” sort of condition.  So I dropped diligently and then got married in contacts.

But my eyeball problem came back (3 times) and off I went in search of English-speaking doctors.

Right about this time, we got benefits again.  Yay!  So I tried to use them, but I was shot down for pre-existing condition.  Okay, fair enough.  But then every time I went to the eye doctor for anything at all – dry eye, itchy eye, different hurty eye, I was shot down.  Pretty much, my insurance just wasn’t going to pay a damn thing for my eyes ever again.

And that became my best rationalization for not going to the gynecologist.  Which, as experiences goes, is really awful (amirite?!) and, without benefits, really expensive.  So I skipped it.  For.. uh… several years.

I have KNOWN gynecological problems, so not-going has turned into this sort of pathological mix of shame and terror and knowingness that I must go someday and probably should make it soon, but am unable to make myself do so.

Now that I have benefits again, I have made every doctor appointment that I can think of and most of them are this coming week.  Including the gynomonster.  Which I dread with a dread that is akin to checking into the Overlook Hotel, by yourself, at night, after Jack has gone crazy and hacked up all the other guests.  And irony, now the halls are gushing blood.

Clearly, I cannot keep this appointment – what is she going to do, part the red sea and swim up to my cervix?  Probably shouldn’t let my primary care lady take blood this week, either, because, you know, blood loss…

It was damned hard to make those appointments in the first place, people.  Fat girls with lists and lists and lists of health problems do not want to go to the gyno or the primary.  It ain’t nothing but an exercise in humiliation and judgment for us combined with dismissive treatment and no real help for our problems.  Both hopeless and disheartening, if you know what I mean.  With a side of abject terror.  I may never work up the gumption to schedule it again, I swear it.

I told you I would over share, right?  Pretty sure I said that.  And now I’ve done it.

xo

1st visit to the farmer’s market after all my education…

I did end up getting to go the Decatur Farmer’s Market !  So nice!  It was really windy and cold (you know, for Atlanta), but it was still fun. Turns out, I actually like talking to the farmer’s market people and asking them about their stuff.  It was lean pickings, being February and all, but most of the stuff I expected to see was actually there!  This makes me excited for Spring and Summer ventures to the various markets around here.

So I got this stuff:

dairbread

Butter, raw cheddar cheese, and homemade whole wheat sourdough.

And this stuff:

honeyoil

Local honey, white balsamic dressing/marinade, and basil infused olive oil.  So I’m pretty sure the balsamic and olive oil aren’t local, and these were total impulse purchases.  For fun, you know.  But the honey is local and amazingly delicious.  The honey guy had several different types (flavors?) of honey, all of which could be sampled and the wildflower honey is possibly the best honey I have ever had, hence the jumbo-sized bottle.  Plus, allergy season is coming, so it’s time to start honey loading.

And also, I got this stuff:

potcaroni

Sweet potatoes, green onions, and carrots.  I didn’t get huge amounts of these, because the hubs eats none of this stuff unless I sneak it into a stir fry or something.  I think I’ll probably keep the carrots out for salads and make mashed sweet potatoes for myself.  The green onions I’ll never get through before they go bad unless I slice them and tray freeze them, so that’s the plan there.

Notes on prices:  the veggies are cheap.  The honey is pretty cheap.  The fancy dressings and oils are NOT cheap and not something I would buy with any regularity.  If the basil olive oil is good, I may just make my own this summer, so this purchase was more of an experiment than anything else.  I absolutely SUCK (suckity suck suck) at making salad dressings myself, so I splurged here.  For the record, I do not know why I suck at salad dressings.  Everyone on the internet says it’s so easy and that the dressings taste so good, but mine always taste crappy.  I don’t like store-bought dressings, either, but I love all the restaurant ones, so I don’t know what gives.  I guess I’m incredibly picky about salad dressing.  But every time I say that in public, some helpful soul insists that I should just squeeze lemon on my salad, but I gotta be honest… eh.  At any rate, I’m on a quest to find a good salad dressing recipe.  Any help you can provide would be greatly appreciated.

Anyhoo, back to prices..  the dairy is also not cheap, but if there’s anything I’ve learned, it’s that one should reserve judgement until they’ve tried something (hello, pastured eggs?).  So I will let you know if the jury convicts or acquits on the pricey dairy.

Lessons learned today:

1.  Do not go to the farmer’s market hungry.  You may think that open air markets are exempt from this rule, but they are NOT.

2.  Skip the tables of bottled/prepared stuff, unless you are just looking to blow some money on impulse buys.  I don’t really need them, and really don’t have time to be rationalizing that shit after the fact.

3.  Do try samples of things that you normally do purchase, for example, the honey.  I would’ve bought tupelo honey today, but turns out, the wildflower honey was rocking my world.  I seriously could eat that stuff with a spoon.  I don’t even like honey all that much.  But now I want to find a recipe that calls for tons of honey so I have a vehicle of delivery to my mouth that is not just opening wide and squeezing it in.

4.  Try to have a plan for what sort of stuff you need.  Today is a bad example for me because it was an exploratory mission.  (The honey guy sells pastured chicken eggs, but he always runs out early.  Also, he charges $6/dozen which is exactly what Whole Foods charges, so I guess now I know and can keep it mind.  If I’m at WF and need eggs, great.  If I’m at the market and need eggs, I need to go early.

There you go!

xo

Begging for Xanax on other blogs is the 2nd sign…

The first sign that you are in a really, really, really bad mood is yelling at your husband and halfway through actually pausing to wonder what, EXACTLY, is making you so mad.

You will note that I said “halfway”.  As in, I kept going even after I figured out that I had no idea why the hell I was so mad.

Righteous, poorly-placed, anger!

After a few minutes of reflection, I feel bad about it, although what’s done is done.  It’s not like I can wipe it from his memory, so I guess I just need to wipe it from mine.  Which reminded me of the Bloggess‘ (Bloggesses’?) post yesterday about Xanax, as clearly nothing but pharmaceuticals can help me, now.  I had nothing clever, or even remotely valuable, to add to the comments on her site yesterday, but today it occurs to me that my only real thoughts about it are that I am jealous?  Because I need some?

(Her taking Xanax is clearly about me, people.  Isn’t everything?)

So, yeah, I might have left a comment demanding some of her stash and that is the 2nd sign that I am in a bad mood.

What I have come to realize lately, actually mostly because of this-here blog, is that I am angry.  I call it “ornery”, because I’m southern, but really, I am just angry.  And I am not sure what to do about it!  

And I’m not sure why.

xo

How are my seedlings, you ask?

I am assuming you asked.  I have no way of knowing for sure that you asked, but I feel the question floating around out there in the universe and I am ever your humble servant.

seedlings2day

The wine box seedlings are doing okay.  They have suffered some, not exactly sure of the cause, but I do believe that a cat was involved.  On more than one occasion.  So there are fewer of them.  And some footprints.

The planter of seedlings is doing well!

seedlings2day2

The cat was involved in this one, too, I’m pretty sure, because there is no evidence on the web anywhere of sprouts jumping up out of the dirt and laying down on their sides like that.  So unless I have some suicidal seedlings, the cat found these guys, as well.

I am now officially hoping for Spring because although I hate hot weather, I really want my little seedlings to LIVE.  LIVE, LITTLE GUYS, LIVE!

And, to that end, I’m having one of the contractors I use a lot at work come and put in a raised garden bed for me this weekend.  He’s cutting me a deal, of course, but I have GOT to get these little buggers out of the house before they are assassinated by curious (and curiously hungry) cats.  I’ll just have to cover the raised bed in plastic or something every night.   Words of advice on this subject are ALWAYS welcome!

XO

February Produce, or what I hope to find tomorrow!

Along with all my studies on food + nutrition + all that is encompassed by those topics which shall not be discussed in depth here, I keep reading & hearing that if you want peak nutrition, you need to buy local when you can.

So Wednesday, assuming my day doesn’t turn into one of those blown-up, more-to-do-than-time-available days, I will swing by the Decatur Farmer’s Market where I hope to find any/all of the following items which are allegedly in season:

IN SEASON, IN GEORGIA, IN FEBRUARY

Bok Choy (yep, someone had this – updated 2/21/13)

Brussel Sprouts

Cabbage (yep, someone had this – updated 2/21/13)

Carrots (yep, someone had this – updated 2/21/13)

Collards (yep, someone had this – updated 2/21/13)

English Peas

Green Onions (yep, someone had this – updated 2/21/13)

Mushrooms

Sweet Potatoes (yep, someone had this – updated 2/21/13)

Spinach

Turnips (yep, someone had this – updated 2/21/13)

This list is according to my quick research.  Since I have never paid any attention to such things as “seasonality” of food, nor would have a single damn clue about such things, this will be a new venture, this trying to eat seasonally.  Honestly, other than knowing that you cannot get good watermelon when it is not hot out, I have not the foggiest idea.  I only know this because I do not recall ever having eaten watermelon at any other time besides summertime.  Which, frankly, is good, because who the hell wants to eat watermelon inside?  Where do you spit the seeds when you’re inside?

Also, I have no idea if the above list is correct, so if you DO know and if I am indeed incorrect, then please leave a comment.

I will be interested to see if I can locate any of these items on Wednesday.

I will report back.

xo