Saturday, September 10, 2011

Just Another Day

I was at Whitecliff Nursing Home, waiting for my Regional Nurse.
I'd driven across the state the day before.
We were going to start the facility's presurvey review.
I was wearing a black dress.
I watched The Today Show on the large TV in a lounge.
I walked the halls to check on the residents.
Some had heard and didn't realize what had happened.
Some had heard and were numb.
Finally I just turned off televisions in the rooms where the residents didn't understand.
They, for once, were the lucky ones.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011


Yeah, I'm a little old for that but it happened yesterday afternoon as Morgan meandered around Lancaster County - and maybe other counties as well...I lost track.

I discovered I'm a Type A personality...well, maybe Type A Light.
I need to know what I'm doing, where I'm going, what I'll do when I get there, who I will be with and when I'll get home...all the time.
I don't think I was always like that--controlling.
I really didn't think I am like that. But I must be because as Morgan took what I kept saying were wrong turns away from home (supposedly on our way back from Gettysburg...could he have done it on purpose?), I found myself getting more and more anxious. When we passed an intersection on Rt 322, one I've crossed many times on the way from one of our facilities to another, and when we passed it going in the wrong (for going home) direction, I almost got short of breath.
Yes, I was tired.
Yes, I had things to do at home.
But I did have the next day off.
We could have meandered around Pennsylvania and Maryland (and New Jersey if Morgan had been so inclined) without me losing a minute of work.
Sanity, it seems, was another thing.
I tried to explain it to the calm, unruffled Morgan. Um... the calm, unruffled, retired Morgan.
"I'm a nurse," I said, as if that was more than enough explanation. "I was a single mom," I added, thinking that was enough.
"I had to be in charge all the time. At work and at home. That's why I'm like this."
Morgan just looked at me with his enigmatic Morgan-smile.
"Well, soon, you won't have to worry about that. You'll be able to do anything you, we, want at any time," he said. "You'll be retired and we'll be married."
And then it hit me.
Retirement meant more than just not going to work everyday. Retirement was not going to work everyday... and everything that means.
No schedule defined by someone else.
No time frames set by someone else.
No control by someone else.
I would answer to no one but myself...and Morgan.
I would really be in control...of everything and for the first time.
That was scary.
But not as scary as when I saw the Oregon Diary on the wrong side of Rt. 272 for the second time and realized that if we kept going we would end in Maryland and not Reading, PA.
I've got a lot of work to do on me.

Saturday, September 03, 2011

A Tale of a T....shirt

J.C. Penny recently pulled this t-shirt because of a controversy - many thought it was sending the wrong message to young girls...including some young girls (see above website for their comments).

Part of me agrees with the push back and part of me agrees with the shirt.

You see, I've never been pretty and I've had to work damn hard for everything, including relationships - well, except for this last one - he loves me for me.

Now I'm sure there are pretty girls out there who will tell you that they've had to work hard, too.
Uh - maybe not so much.
There have been studies that show differently. For example, when given the choice between a pretty woman and a plain one, all other considerations being equal, it will be the pretty one that usually gets the job.

I won't even get into the subject of junior high/high school/college rejections. That's a parallel universe and one we carry throughout our lives. I was on the Senior Prom Committee. I wrote the poem for the prom book: An Evening to Remember. How do I remember that evening? I remember that I wasn't there - no date - in that era no girls could go alone.

And don't be the not-pretty girl with a high IQ. You may as well start your cat collection now, dearie. You scare everyone away, except if they need you for something. That t-shirt could have said: I'm too pretty to do homework, so my ugly friends have to do it for me. Been there, done that, got nothing for it.

So maybe the t-shirt should have stayed on online and in the store, as a reality check. Is it any different than "I'm with stupid"?

Yes, a girl today can be anything she wants.
But good looks hold an advantage.
Taking a t-shirt away is not going to change that.
Maybe nothing will.
We'll still have to work harder.
And girls should know what they're up against.