A Soap Opera

I planned to spend the day at the pool. Instead I took a nap. That’s what I do when thrown off-kilter. Sometimes I won’t be able to re-adjust without a total restart, which is a nap and a perfection prayer. Then clean slate. Try again not to fuck everything up.

I did everything so right this morning, not cursing and getting upset when I at first couldn’t find a book I sold on Amazon. It was after I gave the cats  their flea control that trouble brewed.

“Remember to wash your hands good afterward,” Mom advised, “because it’s poison.”

OK, no problem, right? So I rub my left hand around the bar of soap and wash my hands by rubbing them together a few seconds under the cool water. I’m not too concerned when it comes to me, but I practically prep for surgery if I’m preparing something for someone lest I contaminate her or him. This is when Mommie Dearest comes in and cries, “NO WIRE HANGERS EVER!!!”

Well, actually she said, “That’s not washing! You just run your hands under water and call it washing.”



That did it.  From neutral to enraged in .5 seconds. I soap again and wash. Angry. Angry. ANGRY.

Afterward, gritting my already evenly ground teeth, I asked her if she saw me use the soap. I don’t always just rinse my hands under water. In fact, I often ritualize washing after the bathroom, preferably with liquid soap. I count to 30 or recite the Happy Birthday song a couple of times in my head, thank you very much.

I was so angry! And when she apologized it was in that annoyed martyr voice she does when she is completely frustrated with me.  Her voice dips down low and increases with each sorry. “I’m sorry….I’m sorryyy….I’m SORRY!” Needless to say it’s hard to talk to her about why I’m angry, and thinking about it now renews my anger a bit.

I gave into my feelings, altering from states of intense anger to utter hopelessness. My thoughts were in this vein: I fucking can’t do anything right. I always, always end with fucking things up. I might as well just drop dead I’m so fucking useless. I can’t even wash my hands the right way.

But I felt much better after that nap, my prayer, my assurance to myself that this time I won’t mess up some way.  I ended up at the pool after my “re-perfecting” was done.  I walked past a boy, perhaps around 9 years-old, and he asked me to use my goggles.  Pollyanna said, “Sure, as long as you give them back when you’re done.” He must never have got done with them, my $6.00 impermeable goggles. Funny, I was only somewhat annoyed by this. At least they fixed the pool filter, so my eyes will be tolerant again of the chlorine level in the water. I want my freaking goggles back though, little bastard, because I can see things better with them on, and because you’re old enough to know better than to steal. Club Ghetto/Trailer Park  strikes again!

My mom was kinda mad, though, that someone stole from me….


(Photos snatched from Photobucket and Flickr w/o permission.)




10 thoughts on “A Soap Opera

  1. That’s a terrific way to re-set your system. I love naps and always feel better. I’ve read that a nap can reset your neurotransmitters, which sounds great to me. You really know how to take care of yourself.

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    • Thank you! It sometimes gets to be a bit much when I have to do it or feel icky the rest of the day, ruminating on how I messed, but I love sleeping too so win!

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  2. That little 9 year old kid is wrong. You are right when you say he is old enough to know better. I’m sorry you didn’t get your goggles back. On another note, I too like your way of starting over with a clean slate. Fabulous idea to take a nap, have a prayer, and start the day over. Sometimes I feel as though I need to step out the door, come back in and start over myself….

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    • Can you believe that? It’s like people don’t teach kids right from wrong anymore (I know everyone says that each new generation). It ain’t like you have to beat it into a kid with a wire hanger either. My mother(bless her, I haven’t shown her this post yet, just told her about it)just did little things like pay for a Hershey Bar that was down in our cart and had not been rung up…We were already outside, no one would have known, but she did it anyway. You remember stuff like that, think I was seven.
      But I do recall a few not so good things I did.
      I think I stole a crayon at daycare -age 4
      Tried to snatch a scratch n’ sniff Strawberry Shortcake book from pre-school, but mom made me bring it back -age 5
      Couldn’t find my undies after coming back from playing on the makeshift waterslide in pre-school. So I just took the pair I saw, but I think the other little girl got mine. I remember my mom and her dad exchanged our washed underwear another day. Ah, “Misty watercolored memories of the way we were.” -age 5
      Snatched money from my mom’s purse, only to give it right back when asked -age 7
      Failed to return a couple library books to a school after I left there, an accident really and I meant to return them-age 8
      Lifted a pretty flower bulb right out of the ground at a garden you paid to visit for my mom -age 14 (still feel guilty a little for that one)
      If I wanted printer paper or pens or to xerox something, I sorta kinda helped myself at my mom’s office, sanctioned by Mom, but not exactly right (I’d probably still do that, sad to say, b/c they had boxes and boxes of it, though I on;y took a tiny bit -maybe I wouldn’t) -age 12-22
      I think I didn’t redo a sentence or 2 in my own words or cited the correct source on a paper -age 17
      Borrowed a book and lost it though I meant to return it -age 17 (still feel bad)
      My friends in Geology class would let me copy their lab work answers w/o contributing ’cause danged if I knew, and once on the final exam, I nearly tried to swipe an answer before my conscience kicked in, plus the other guy saw me, but my conscience demanded I stop. -Age 22
      I’ve cheated on things for other people, but feel guilty Age 28-33, or let them help me out w/o either condoning or opposing because I would never ask, but they wanted to.
      Ate more than 1 sample at the grocery store, more than 1 candy in candy dishes -age 33 and counting.

      Ok that was cathartic. I’m really scrupulous, so I remember when I veered off the straight and narrow and still feel guilty. There’s my confessions. I think I got everything that could remotely be labeled ‘stealing.’

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  3. Do not let those folk out there get the better of you. lol Get lots of rest and smile alot. It helps me. Hope you have a great week. “

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    • LMAO, would’ve served him right. My mom was sore someone stole from me, but she didn’t cry out, “LISA! Bring me the ax.”
      I don’t know why that movie is so friggin hilarious to me but for some reason I get a chuckle….I’d probably be horrified if I saw the movie again, haven’t seen it in years, but those one liners in Mommie Dearest are priceless.

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