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  • Writer's picturemaggiehsmith07

Calling All Bad Asses

That's you, dear reader. How was your first day of 2019? Before we get into your bad assery, let's talk about the Smiths first day of 2019. Andrea and I stepped on our fancy pants scale this morning and I weigh so much that the damn thing didn't recognize me. It said, "GUEST". As if some fat interloper decided, on a whim, to weigh themselves. I went to put on my Apple watch to track my activity today and found that it had come detached from the charger overnight and was not prepared to keep up with me. We took our Christmas tree and remaining holiday decor down, from both inside and outside of our home. I left Andrea unattended in the living room, well, with the dogs but that's hardly supervision, and she rammed her toe into the uncapped end of our small step ladder. This lifted her toenail from the base. Andrea doesn't sit still much but this got her to put her bandaged toe up.

"How does it look?" Andrea asked.

I didn't have the heart to say, "OMG! SO MUCH BLOOD. JESUS." So I think I just looked at it sympathetically and silently thanked God that I had the sense to NEVER consider a career in nursing.

Andrea's Apple watch was charged and ready to go but this toe slowed her down the remainder of the day. I bought surgical tape and then almost vomited on her foot so she had to tend to that herself.

Have you ever heard about that thing where you can train your hair so that you can wash it less and it will be less greasy? I've always had grease prone hair. I've spent the last couple days "training" my hair and it's going as well as training Georgie to pee outside. I think this process really just trains you to wear a hat. We were outside taking down the Christmas decor and our neighbors across the street seemed chatty. I was outside in my pajamas at that moment and my greasy hair was uncovered. Thankfully, they didn't cross the street. I feel I'll need to go over there in the next couple days and apologize. "Hey! I am sorry I didn't come over but I was wearing my pajamas which is to say I didn't have a bra on. And, I've been training my hair and it really wasn't going well so... I thought I should stop over here with a bra on and shampooed hair. Happy new year!"

Georgie's new year resolution of peeing less inside isn't going well. Black mark on day one. Part of the issue is that he's on a medication that makes him have to pee more. And honestly, he already peed an awful lot. On Christmas eve, he developed a hacking cough. Why is it that stuff like this happens when the vet is closed? I fretted and googled his symptoms which led me to lose sleep and believe he'd be dead come Christmas morning. I asked Andrea if we should take him to the emergency vet.

"You didn't worry about me this much the time with my appendix!" Andrea pointed out.

"Yeah, well, you can talk." I replied.

We did not take him to the emergency vet and he lived to pee inside with gusto. Merry Whizmas. Andrea too had a hacking cough so the two of them were a real pair. Thankfully, Andrea's on top of using the toilet though.

Enough about the Smiths. For now. Let's talk about you! I am going to be working on a writing project in 2019 that explores resilience, vulnerability, authenticity and rising again. I realize this has been done and that I am not Brene Brown. I'm doing this my own way and that's where I need your help. I am blessed to have so many inspiring friends and acquaintances who have overcome so much and I want to speak with you and help you tell your story. How did you overcome job loss? Losing a loved one? How were you brave enough to pursue working for yourself? How did you sign up for a race again when you were DFL (dead fucking last) in that one you ran? How do you manage your loved ones or your own chronic illness? Your HIV? How do you keep going and honestly share your struggles with mental illness with us in spite of the stigmas that still exist around mental illness? How do you forgive the unforgivable? There are so many stories that can inspire others - let's tell them together. I want to thank my friend Meg Deane who has agreed to meet with me and tell her story. I want to hear your stories. Please email me. I will be reaching out to many of you. We can preserve your confidentiality but to be honest, I am not really interested in that. This is about owning your story and being authentic and vulnerable. I'll leave you with some words from Mary Oliver's poem, The Journey. If you haven't read this poem in it's entirety, it's worth doing so. It's beautiful and can be found here. It brings tears to my eyes and burns my nose each time I read it and I know you have a story that will have that impact on people. Let's tell it.

"...and there was a new voice

which you slowly

recognized as your own,

that kept you company

as you strode deeper and deeper

into the world,

determined to do

the only thing you could do --

determined to save

the only life that you could save."

Excerpt from The Journey by Mary Oliver

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