Thursday, September 24, 2009

September 24, 2009 When Is He Coming Home?

I want to write away the pain. Sometimes I think that's why I write. I know that's why I talk to people, why I spend the energy to explain to them what this process is like. The more I talk the more distance I have from the process. The more distance I have from the process the less like mine it feels. Or the more sense I can try to make of it.

Sense. On a very primal level, his death makes no sense to me. I look at pictures of us in November, when we thought he was healthy, when the cancer was only the tiniest cell in his body and I get confused. How could he not be here? Why hasn't he come home yet? How is it possible I will never hear his voice or know the feeling of his hand on my back or hear him yell at the kids again. I don't understand how this can happen.

And God am I lonely. Admitting that in a country that is built on independence and do-it-yourselfness feels almost shameful. I don't want a companion, not a boy friend, not a relationship, but just someone to touch that female side of me.

Part of my power of being a woman was in being able to make Art laugh, turning him on, having someone sharing my insights, giving me input, turning me on, being held by him, kissed gently with no intention other than to touch his lips to my forehead or hair or hand or shoulder. To smile at him and have it returned as if we held some big secret. I miss all that.

I miss the arguments that were broken often with laughter. I miss hearing his foot steps in the bedroom hall, hearing his closet door open, the muted rustle of the plastic hangers as he hung up his clothes. I miss watching him parent, our tete-a-tetes on how to handle X situation with Z kid.

I miss being mad at him, in my righteousness and in my rightness too. I miss apologizing to him. I miss being swallowed into his chest, his arms completely wrapped around me. I miss sharing the green chair with him when we watched movies. I miss his smell. I miss his chemo smell too. It meant he was alive and he was fighting.

And I miss the wonder of him. His deep blue eyes, his way of bending a conversation to his will without you even noticing. His sincerity.

And the other side is I miss having a man in the house. The deepness that testosterone brings. I
I don't want someone to replace him. I just want like, an on-call guy. Someone I can call and say, "Come over and lie with me in bed till I fall asleep." or "Come watch a movie with me." Or touch my shoulder and say "You're beautiful, you're amazing." Someone to remind me that I am more than just a widow and a mom. that I am more than someone who has lost a spouse or whose life will never, ever, ever be the same. Someone to help pull me out of me.

This on-call guy has to feel the need to be needed, know that his masculinity is in the small moments and thoughts and touches. It would not be about sex (although...mmmm, no complaints if it goes partly in that direction.) It would be about helping each other through this difficult moment, his (whatever it is) and mine. There would be tentativeness and tenderness and hope and laughter and gratitude. It wouldn't last but it would serve its purpose, helping both of us to emerge on the other side more intact.

And in the end, it wouldn't take away the confusion. I still don't get it. I still don't understand. Why am I here and he's not? Why do I talk to the kids about him in past tense now, always. When is he coming home? When is he coming home?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

September 22, 2009 Moths In the Pantry

The moths in the pantry are back. I check the flour, the beans, and the couscous. I check the box of forgotten rice crispies...waiting for the marshmallows and butter. Nothing there.

I check the cereals. Gorilla Munch. No. Koala Krisps. Nothing. Then I see it. The box of Optimum wedged into the corner. It was his cereal. I kept thinking I'd eat it ... but even my desire to be close to him could not make me put straight milk in my body. I open the box and the months flutter free.

Suddenly I am smashing the moths between my fingers, crushing them between the lining of the bag and box, content on my devastation of them, wanting to get them all. And I stop.

Composure. The kids are up. Besides I would have to clean up the mess. I'm too tired to do that. And then I think of the release of not caring, how wonderful it would be to let it all go.

Later I am reading Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and hiding my sobs from the kids. Harry has just returned, Voldermort has risen again, and he saw a friend die. And while Harry is recounting the story, I can feel Dumbldore and Sirius's sadness watching as this boy recounts what he saw. And then I think of Cedric's parents and I have to stop reading for a moment. And I suck in my breath in.

I recount my emotions. The terror I felt when I first saw him on Sunday morning, his eye unable to focus, he responding only sometimes to my voice, and not at all to anyone else's. How I thought he was crazy to tell me "I'm OK" when he had a moment of complete clarity, recognized me and the concern and fear I must have been wearing. My surprise seconds later, at his answer response to "Honey, do you know where you are?" He said "Yes, I'm climbing up, I'm going up." And how later, those words would sit on me and so would the anger at not telling him then and there that I loved him.

The go-ahead-I-can-take-it attitude to the on-call doctor on Sunday night who asked my briskly "What is his code?" "In English please" I had said. "What are his resuscitation orders." And I said, without hiccupping, as if I were the professional, "Keep him alive till my kids can say good-bye to him."

The next day, when our oncologist came in and said "He is going to die. He will probably go within the week." And the relief I felt. Finally, someone had said "die."

And then watching him go. The way his breathing changed, the way his color changed, the coolness of his hands.

And I can't believe this is my life. And I want to cry, and curl up and just wait for all this to pass. I want to stay in bed and function enough to use the bathroom and occassionally eat. I want this world to go AWAY.

But it won't. There is school to attend, meeting to get to and clients to see. There are trips to be planned, food to be made or accepted. I must function.

Some have said that I am brave, you have so much courage. And I want to laugh. It's not courage. My back is up against the wall. The only reason I'm standing is because it's supporting me.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Art Nagle Memorial Run

The Art Nagle 5K Memorial Run is in November! Come run, walk/run or walk the 3.1 miles. Support the Talbert Family Foundation who supported us. Your entry fee is all they need to keep giving directly to families who are dealing with a double whammy...a major health catastrophes AND financial struggles. You CAN make a difference. You did for us.

I want to reiterate. This is a 3.1 mile race. You don't have to be a runner to participate! Walk it with some friends. It'll take 45 minutes and you'll feel great. Art loved this race, loved this organziation and boy did he love to run.

Friday, September 18, 2009

September 17, 2009 Talking to Strangers

Peace comes tonight in the form of 8 strangers. Mexican and Jewish, white and other, one young with child on the way, one older with a young child, spiritual, long haired, out going and quiet, well dressed and unclipped toe nails.

We are strangers. We come together and shut the door, shut the unclear, confusing and sometimes mean world on the other side of the door. The latch releases in its hold and we exhale.

I miss her, he states. I am angry too! she says. I crave to be touched, says another. We all laugh, nodding our heads. We hear, nodding our heads. We cry nodding our heads. We all nod our heads, we all get it, we all understand.

And there is wonderment at the same emotions we strangers share. For now it’s our new Utopia, the closest we can come in this grief to it. This Utopia offers understanding and silence and space to raise our voices, stare out our hands, to sob, to swear, to joke and gafaw. No excuses necessary.

And when we open the door, our fellowship continues in a near-by restaurant, discussing our lives before we got here, what we are doing now that we are here. You have two dates? Smiles. This is a picture of my son, he said. And I look and my mama bear roars and I want to defend that child. I know that I love him. I know that I would defend him with my life and he’s not mine, but he is because he belongs to one of us.

And finally the world pushes in on the clock. We leave. I get in my car and I feel lighter, sweeter – less full of rage, more full of relief and calm and Okness. I drive home – knowing that they are driving home too and I feel safe. If my phone rings tonight, if I make someone else's phone ring tonight, it will be answered and there will be no should, no don’t worry, no you’ll get through this. There will be a space held for me (I for them) and I can cry or they can cry, or rage or laugh or whatever.

They know what it’s like, these strangers. They know my grief because it’s their grief and I love them for that. I love them in a place I have never been before.

They make this journey manageable when nothing or no one else can.

Monday, September 14, 2009

September 15, 2009 Judgement Day

There is something I want you all to understand.

This is the worst thing that has ever happened to me. Yes it is all about me because Art was my husband and one hell of a partner. If you have lost your job, it is the worst thing that has ever happened to you! I can only pray it is the worst thing that will ever happen to the kids.

Grief has no time line or rhythm or reason. You dip in and out, weave and sway, stop and go. There will be moments when I am grateful again and there will be moments again when I am full of rage.

Anger is one of the stages of this grief. One does not pass through a stage and then is done with it, one weaves in and out of them as well. Read Kubler-Ross’s book and you’ll see.

There is never a moment I don’t “get on with my life.” I do it every single moment of every single day, that’s how many times I think of him. I do it waking up in my bed and glancing over to see if maybe Art will be there. I do it in every breath I take, plan I make, decision I decide. It has gotten easier but easier in a sense that I am only caring one ton, instead of two. Every friggin’ day that I wake up and put my feet on the floor is a triumph because I am getting on with my life!

Right now, in this moment I am angry and herein lies the conundrum….if I lie and show gratitude when I don’t feel it, happiness when it is a far reach for me then I am not being true to my process. And believe it or not, it’s great that you read but I do this for myself. Art knew that, in fact he's the one who pointed it out to me. The writing and posting helps me with my process.

No one said it would be easy to read about or that you, the reader would like it. But this is MY blog and MY process. And you read partly, I suspect, because you want to see what this is all about. And yet when I show my honest feelings, however ugly, many of you are appalled and find them disgusting. Rage is part of it. There is no judgment on it, it just is. The rage is in my widow’s group and it is part of every widow I have spoken with from 90 year old and the 23 year old. They warned me about posting, said that others would not understand. They were right.

The comments kept telling me I should feel gratitude, as if I had never written about it. It makes me laugh because you and I have such short memories, that's what spin doctors bank on! Read back to my trip to Maine or to some of the earlier posts, there is gratitude there. This is not gratitude here right now, but that will change. When and where I don’t know but I know that nothing is permanent, not your life or mine, not gratitude or anger.

And exactly how am I to show this gratitude? What would you the reader have me do? What would make you think I am grateful enough? Is a thank you in person, a thank you note, or would you prefer I cry over what you have done for me. I have said thank and felt like many of you do when you say “I’m sorry,” to a grieving person, that it just isn’t enough, that I can’t possible express how much a small gesture means to me or to the kids. How do you know I haven't been grateful? You don't. I have written notes, sent texts and made phone calls. Many people squirm with the acknowledgment and the gratitude I show them. There is not a day that goes by that I do not say thank you to someone for their help, not a damn day! It may not be aimed at you, or perhaps you were not in a place to receive it?

Grieving alters the chemicals in a person's brain. To hold me to "normal" expectetations is like asking a ...well don't hold your breath! I am on drugs, my brain is a mess.

What I write is about my grief, that is all I know. Call it narcissistic, but it is MY GRIEF!!!! When and, if you are ever in my place your reaction may be different, it may be the same.

It is easy to look on, and I do mean on, someone else’s life and to say “you should….,” to pick out the holes and tell them what they can do to make it better. I know, I was a queen of You Shoulds. And now I know there is no should. It’s not up to me, the voyeur from the outside, to tell anyone how to do anything. It is completely 100% up to the person going through the process. I can only listen, ask for clarity and give feedbackWHEN I AM ASKED (still working on that last one) but that is all.

It's not easy to say “Wow, I don’t like the way that made me feel. I don’t get you. And I’d like to think I wouldn’t act in the same manner, but I cannot judge you cause I KNOW NOT!”

I cannot promise you I will be nicer in the future. I cannot promise you will never read anything here that you will make you uncomfortable. I cannot promise you I will even keep blogging. If you are looking for that, they I strongly suggest you look somewhere else.

I am not the first to write about widowhood, and I will not be the last. All of us have told our truths. And that is what you will find here, my truth. Call it want you want, narcissistic, selfish whatever, but it is my truth. If you don’t like it, please don’t read it anymore. Move on and tell yourself you are better off for it, you may be.

Your life is too short and precious to be bothered by my words.

Take this truth or leave it. But unless you have walked in my shoes, none of you has the right to judge me. Not a single one of you.

Friday, September 11, 2009

September 12, 2009 Layers of Rage

Kathleen, a commenter on the last post said, "Anger at others is undoubtedly a distraction from the great aching pain."

I wanted to say "You know nothing" and "You're wrong." I wanted to be righteous and look down on all those people who know nothing of this kind of grief.

Only she was right. The rage is a distraction.

Rage is not pretty, it makes me squirm to see it in others. It's unpredictable and over-powering which is what gives it its strength. The unpredictability of it is often terrifying. Choices are to run or defend. Rage kills. And when I rage, it feels good. I am breaking from that confining box that says "You can't. You should not, you are not allowed. People will not like it." And I bust out like Superman and feel the wind in my now long hair. I will not apologize for my rage. It is part of my grief process.

And rage is a cover.

I am too-nice-person. Our nanny walks out on us a week before she is supposed to and I write her a letter that forgives her young foolish behaviour and ends with something like "I hope that someday you see the amazing woman that I see in you." She left me and the kids stranded one month after Art died and I'm all like, you are such a great person?!

I put the needs of others ahead of my own, afraid that if I don't I will not be liked. (Yes my therapist and I are working on that.) In his death, after being here for almost five month in this grief, I still fill the need to take care of others. Heck, that's part of what the tips are all about. I let them cry about my loss on me. I soothed and comforted those who needed it. I explained my process, instead of feeling my process. The only people I ever want to do that for are my kids. I knew that in the beginning of this journey. But I still behaved differently.

Finally now that I am done taking care of others, when I am hurting and waiting and wanting them to comfort me, I see them waiting for me to tell them what to do. The rage comes from that place. From them wanting me to do what I always do which is comfort and guide and forgive. And I am infuriated....How dare you!!! How dare I!!!!

And I am rageful at a society that knows nothing on how to comfort, that places rules on what is proper behavior for the a grieved, that encourages independence but teaches nothing that the most powerful independence comes from feeling comforted and loved and understood. Everyone deserves to feel that way, comforted, loved and understood.

Deeper still, is a place where the sadness is so black that I can't see my fingers wiggle in front of my eyes. So low that I wonder why continue on, I believe that I just can't do this anymore. I can touch the despair. At first it's viscous, I can move in it but slowly and with effort. When I am fully in, and its around me, it hardens into the shiny, black glass and I believe that I cannot get out. And it drains me and I think, why bother.

That mournful, depressed place is a place I will do anything to avoid. I sense it is the place I need to go, to sit, but it is so ..... overbearingly lonely. And before I enter in cautiously, the only rope I have is faith that I will get through. The confidence from past grieving moments is no use here because the grief has changed yet again. I see why older couples die within months of each other. I get it.

I am afraid of that new grief, so I try to ignore it. And every time I do, it comes back again, bigger and darker, looming closer.

These last two weeks have been the most difficult since Art has died. In the beginning I had days to get through so I counted. Day 14, Day 27, Day 40. Now, 3 days from five months I see that life is going on. The kids grow, friendships shifts, I change too. And I am mad as hell about that. And it all removes him from me more. I don't know where I stand in this world without him. I haven't found my footing yet. And that floating feeling, not having a way to steer, command, or cajole myself into a direction terrifies me. Time will teach me how to steer in this new place. Easier said than truer words exist.

I am a lost, homeless orphan, left to swim in cold, swift waters. I have help from those who loved him and love me, but ultimately I must do this alone, in rage, in fear, in love, I must do this alone. I was just hoping that someone could come with me.

September 11, 2009 Hair of the Dog....Rage

Hangover. I have a hangover from yesterday.

School, first day of school. Mis-managed, mis-timed. Tears while dropping Langston off. Art was looking forward to taking Langston every day to school with him. First day at Pallas and Ezra's which involves a locked gate, teachers on a balcony blowing bubbles and a count down. No oj, not enough eggs and toast eaten on the drive. No make-up, and hair .... can't remember what I did with it. Two weeks of no sleep clear under my eyes.
Parent coffee and I watch someone avoid me.

The fall is saturated with him. September is Art. Under these circumstances, a new routine causes the ground to sink. I remember that my life is not steady. I feel his loss come in closer, like it's not close enough, ready to smother me.

Today, the day after I'm tired, achy, have a headache. A realization arrives. That break, that allusive get away that I thougth school would bring is not coming. It's just another routine, another adjustment to make in this life without. And the kids ate toast again while I tried to see through the tears on the way to school.


"Is it too late to help." she wanted to know.

To late? Is there an expiration date on this experience?

At least she asked. She wanted to know, but you! I see you and I hate your inability to approach me. I hate your guilt, your shame and your excuses.

"I thought about you all summer. I keep meaning to call you" then comes the smile in which you want me to forgive you like I'm some priest.

Don't confess to me! I am not about to absolve you.

Bone the (@)*# up! Your cowardice is not my responsibility. Your inability to be willing to risk, your inability to say ANYTHING, to make a mistake is NOT my responsibility. I simply refuse to help you. I am the one who needs the help.

I hate when you run from me, without even having the decency to telling me you're running. "I can't deal with death right now. This is hitting too close." someone else said to me. That's an acknowledgment of where I am and of where you are. It's perfect. And she was not running, she was stepping in, closer and being real.

But no, you're so afraid, so in your damn head, that you actually think you might say something that would make me feel worse? How in hell can you make ME feel worse?!

Saying "I don't know what to say" is a good thing to say. And then afterwards there may be an uncomfortable silence and that's ok too.

But you can't even do that, can you? I hate you for all of your other friends you have left behind in your shame and your insecurities.

I hate you for the 700,000 women in the US who will become widows this year and then be abandoned by their "friends." How dare you! I hate you for all the widows from 9/11! How dare you not be able to face your own demons around this while I, we the widows, face our own every frickin' moment of every frickin' day.

I hate you for reaching out only sort of, pretending to be a friend but only when it's convenient for you. I hate you for your self-absorption. That's what it is, you're so self absorbed you think my pain will spread to you like the H1N1 virus and you think it will make you just as sick, too.

I have been kind and patient to you in my grief. I have told myself over and over "This must be hard for them, not knowing what to do and say." I @()$#* gave to you when I should have been receiving! I did it because I thought you'd bone up. Cause I thought you would have the courage to say "I will do something, even if it's the wrong thing. I will take action." And then follow it with action. Instead, you slunk away.

You slunk around in the beginning, saying to yourself, I should, I will , I'll wait until...and now here it is and you haven't and now you are filled with shame and instead of walking into that shame and acknowledging it, you slink past me as if I'm not here.

Real life is not clean or neat, and not lived in emotional boxes. You can't wave in love, joy, respect, courage, envy, hurt, disappointment then decide which one you want to take on. Life is not safe. It's dirty and deep and musky and raw and filthy. And you lose every time you ignore that. You lose by not at least sticking your toe in the discomfort and keeping it there for a moment. You lose yourself. You become less of a person. Discomfort makes you HUMAN!!

I will no longer extend my life vest. You built your boat. Damned if I know if it'll float. My energy is going to those who have stood up and said "OMG, I need to help" and have helped in their awkward, not always great ways, but they tried, they opened their mouths and words came out. And they did not want me to forgive them their errors. They owned them and I lovve them for that.

For now, I don't want you to come near me. I am done with you. Don't call, dont' try to make it better, unles you are willing to show up as a real person. Then all will be absolved, not by me but by you.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

September 9, 2009 Don't back off!

She said, "I'll wait for you to call, I don't want to push."

I wanted to scream, "NO, don't back off!"

Don't back off. I need you in my life more now than ever.

This part, month five, is a gazillion times harder than month 1. The grief sucks on me, pulls me in. Before it danced around me, touching harshly and often but not with its full force.

Now, it strokes me, plays with me, grabs me and yells "SURPRISE!" in my face at weird moments with no apparent trigger. It sucks me to the brink, so I can't walk to the chair. I'm left weeping, standing in place frightened and alone, unable even, to crumple onto the floor like I did in the beginning.

I need you to witness the grief...if you can. I need you to stand with me. Not to bring me tissues, or hug me or make me feel better but to stand with me in that space, to say "I'm sorry" to watch the pain pull and release my chest and control my breathing. To be silent in the sobs and hold me hand tightly.

Or I need you to invite me over, to lunch, to dinner, to call and say "I just wanted to see if you are available?" Call again and again and again. I need you to want to spend time with me. Pull on me, remind me that I was a likeable person before the grief and that I will be a likeable person after the grief.

Don't back off, keep moving in, even if you don't understand.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

September 8, 2009 Party Blues

I see how crazy I am.

I see it when I talk to people, when I'm snippy or panicky or even nice. I feel like I am just barely on this side of sanity.

I went the annual school picnic at Pallas and Ezra's school. 10 minutes before we left I sat on my bed, hands shaking, gulping big pockets of air. The tears came quickly and with them the release.

"I will be fine. It will be nice to see friends." I believe me. Then I gather my courage which grabs its own bag called "I don't have to talk to anyone I don't want to."

Crowds do that to me, meeting new people does that to me. I feel dread, alarm, and anxiety. And when I am finally in that crowd, it's as if I'm in this odd dream, with cotton in my ears and wrapped in gauze. I know what to say, how to act, how to answer the "How are you?" (accompanied with a gentle touch on the arm and giant cow eyes)

I know I answered. I have my own patented lines.

"We are doing alright."

"It's hard and it's liberating...I get order whatever I want on my pizza."
"It's weird to be a single mother, completely on my own."
"I can do so much on my own that I didn't think I could do."
"How are the kids?" they ask. Patented answers don't vary much:
"They're doing ok."
"Ezra is realizinng that Art is not coming back. He's a bit clingy. The other two seem fine."
"They are managing. Kids experience grief differently from adults."
And I know I said those things. I remember laughing. I remember smiling. I remember hiding from people I didn't want to talk to.
I remember it because it's like watching someone else's movie. I was the driver in this woman's head. I am not attached by emotion. It is my job to drive the bus, so I do. I do it expertly navigating the awkward moments, the silences, the stuck smiles.
When I get home, I am not sure I was even really there. It felt so distant all those grins, those hugs, those how are yous. What I do know is that I'm home now and safe in an environment that I can manage most of the time, even if things need to be just so in order for me to function, in order for me to hold it all together.
These walls, the familiar routines, the way the chair squeaks, the ring of the phone, even the people that show up at my door regulary all bring me comfort. Here I can walk away from the knife's edge. Out there, for now, I can't.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

September 6, 2009 Tiger Mom

It’s the sound little cute tiger cubs make. A low, itty bitty roar and it usually comes in protest, like “Hey, I didn’t want to come. In my house I have no tiger but I have an 7 yr old child who sounds just like one of those cubs, only it’s not so cute. His little roar is followed by words with elongated vowels, the sound of which makes my loose fillings rattle.

“Moooooommmmmmmmm, myyyy eeeeyyyyyeeessssss huuuuurrrrrt.”

The complaint is after I ask him to do something that quite frankly I have no business asking a seven year old to do. It’s off the wall, inappropriate, and border line cruel. In fact, I’m a little nervous to even put it in print lest you think lower of me as a person. Not even the fact that my husband has died offers enough emotional protection. I fear you will be disgusted.

The complaint comes after I say…”Please put the forks on the table.”

Oh the frickin’ horrors. He’s luck I’m not making him work for his supper, which occasional crosses my mind, like every night. The response to this outrageous request?

“Buuuttttt, yyyyyyy eeeeeyyyyyyeessssss are buurrrniiiing. Tuuuurrrrrnnnn oofff the liiiightttt. Oooooow. Owwwww.” Face all crumpled up with the agony of the pain.

And it’s the damndest thing, those burning eyes whose flames yet to notice, only seem to hurt when I ask him to do something. Playing outside IN THE SUN must somehow emit healing rays that allow his eyes to function, to blink, to produce enough moisture. Is it the sun or is it the special ointment emitted by the bamboo bush he is climbing out from. He can see! My child can see. Oh thank the good Lord. He can see well enough to the ball that was just whipped at his head. The window is still waiting for that miracle.

Later, I make another outrageous request. Sure to bring the department of child services to my door.

“Ezra, time to take a shower.”

But moooooommmmmmmm, myyyyyyy eeeeeyeeeesss are buuuuurrrrnrrnnning. Owwww, oowww. Tuuurrrrnnnn ooooffffff the liiiiiiighttssssss. Theeeeeyyyyy huuuuurrrrrt. They are huurrrrrtttting.

Oh wait, do I see tears? Oh I did not jsut see those! No he didn't!

And I think mother tigers have the right idea. They pick up the whining cub by the scruff of his neck and carry him protest and to where little boy tiger needs to be.

I ponder. Is his neck scruff enough?

Are my teeth strong enough to pick him up without actually doing damage?

Do I care?

I decide that it would be embarrassing to admit to an ER doctor that no, his sister didn’t bite him, nor was it his older brother. It was me, the cute well dressed mother standing in front of you. I imagine three reactions.

He (he must be a he) backs out of the room, daring not to leave his neck exposed and calls child protection services.

He is amused with a glint in his eye that says “Lady, is that all ya got? Please this is LA. This is barely worth a mention to my co-workers.

Or he smiles, hands me his card with his person cell phone number on the back, slapping my back side as Ezra and I leave.

Because I cannot predict what the reaction will be and because honestly, it would be a full six hours out of my day, a co-payment AND endless whining about how I bit him, I decide to go with plan be, although the idea of actually giving him something to whine about pleases me.

Plan B? Whine back

“Buuuuttttttt Ezzzzzzrrraaaaaa (excellent name for this, who new!) IIIIII….I

“Mom. Stop it.”


“Stop whining.”

“No you.”

“No you.”

“No, you started it. I’m finishing it.”

“Mom, you’re supposed be the adult.”

“Well, this adult doesn’t feel like it. I want to whine.”

“You are so annoying.”

And I’ve won, cause he knows I mean it. I can whine better than him. His sister and brother
said so. Suddenly his eyes don’t hurt, there is no more whining AND as a bonus, I didn’t have to use my teeth.