Monday, May 3, 2010

Ding Dong

First, if you haven't already played my game, go back to this post and be clever.  I think I'll take NG's challenge and write a story using all of your words, so get in there and make it brilliant!  I'm just the word arranger; you guys are the stars.  (I will not be accepting profanity at this time.  Maybe for Christmas.)

So, I was feeling snarky last week, my default condition even during the other three weeks of the month, and I read this post by Annie, whom I adore and who in fact is coming to visit me in June, although now it may be to punch my lights out. (I'm just glad that by the time she gets here she'll be, like, 30 months pregnant, so I can probably take her.)  I don't remember if I commented - wait, it's coming back to me.  Yep.  I commented all right.  Sheesh, DeNae, do the words "give it a rest" mean anything to you? 

And then my Crazy Catholic Neighbor, Sheri came by to drop off my Avon.  (That's how she introduces herself to all my friends: "Hi, I'm DeNae's Crazy Catholic Neighbor."  You can totally hear the caps.)

And being in the P-leasant M-ental S-tate I was in, I decided to share my snarkiness with her. 

You should know, this was proof of how hormonally insane I was.  Sheri has five kids; the last four were born in under five years.  She calls them her "birth control" kid, her "rhythm method" kid, her "Catholic Services Family Planning" kid, and her "Matt sleeps in the garage now" kid.  Something like that.

When her kids were younger, life at their house was like Disney's "Peter Pan", only Wendy was a chain smoker.  Remember how the Lost Boys basically traveled everywhere in a human tumbleweed, throwing punches and calling each other names like 'numbwit' and 'yogurthead' and, when things got really diabolical, jerks?  That was pretty much a documentary of Sheri's family.  The best day of her life was when number five went to school, although she spent the first three hours terrified she'd gone deaf.  It took me nearly a month to convince her that one of her kids wasn't suddenly going to dart out of the bathroom and take a bread knife to the kitchen chairs.  At least not on weekdays between nine and three.

And THIS was the woman to whom I said the following:

"I'm getting tired of listening to mothers whine that staying home and raising kids is the hardest job in the world.

"Seriously?" I continued. "It's harder than neurosurgery, or scraping bird crap off suspension bridges?" 

And I went on, because some people don't even see the volcano 'til they're hip deep in lava.  "I mean, yeah, it's demanding, and it can be tough at times.  But tougher than spending 18 hours dragging a water buffalo through a rice paddy?  Please. Give me a... give me ... um ... is something wrong?  Your face is all red and stuff..."

Hoo boy. Pompeii DeNae was in for it now.

"DeNae," Mount Sheruvius began, "do you have no memory of the last eight years?  None?  Do you not remember what it was like for me to load five kids, a diaper bag, a purse full of coupons, two light sabers, extra shoes for when Shannon's mysteriously disappeared between the parking lot and the shopping cart, a Ronco Pocket Taser, and my cyanide capsules into the van and head to Wal Mart?"

"Well..."

"And have you forgotten that we repainted the front door six times before we finally decided it was just easier to get rid of the meat tenderizer?"

"Er..."

"Or were you just in a friggin' coma when my two boys came at each other with baseball bats while you were sitting in my living room blathering on and on about you, you, you and I had to turn the hose on them myself, no small feat when you consider the hose was on the side of the house where Dom had used his GI Joe to knock a nest of Africanized bees off the roof?"

"Oh, yeah..."

"So y'know, DeNae, I gotta tell you, after eight long years of staying at home, raising the kids and cleaning the house and shopping and cooking and diapering and disciplining, that water buffalo gig is looking pretty damned nice!" 

Properly humbled and begging her forgiveness, I reflected on the valuable lesson I had learned that morning.  

I'm going to start ordering my Avon online.

40 comments:

Garden of Egan said...

Wow DeNae I hope you've really learned your lesson and start locking the door. Maybe even let those security systems guys in. Your hubby's awesome National Security status isn't gonna protect you from your tongue and the woman next door.

Sleep with one eye open my dear. You may have to consider selling your house.

My verification word:
naryok.

Honey living next door to her you ain't gonna be naryok

Garden of Egan said...

Wow, was I first?
I want the Nobel Peace Prize!

Kristina P. said...

All I have to say is that I'm not going to share a bed with 8 month-pregnant Annie.

Serene is my name, not my life! said...

Mwah ha ha! I am SOOOO with you DeNae! You had me laughing my head off at the end there.

Seriously, just becuase our house single-handedly supports the dipaer Walmart chain and will be signing a contract with the government to allow them access to the never ending stream ofunearthly smelling kiddy poop that is produced here as a new method of bombing enemy camps.

I am also going to write a "How To" book for creating cart chains at the store when you have multiple screaming children insisting on all being held.

I'm also going to search the church's "Handbook of Instructions" to see if duct tape is an acceptable form of kid control during sacrament meeting.

Serene is my name, not my life! said...

I meant cart trains. Not chains. Although, chaining might prove to be very useful.....

KC Mom said...

Ha....ha...ha!! Seriously...I thought my Avon lady retired...but sounds like you have her now!

Kimberly said...

In all honesty, motherhood is only the hardest job on the bad days. It rocks the casbah on the good days, so I think we have an edge over the water buffalo and crud scrapin' peeps. That said? Your paraphrasing of your neighbour has cracked me up. Hard.

becca said...

It amazes me how quickly we delude ourselves into thinking that it wasn't all that bad. Because, really? It WAS that hard. That exhausting. That crazy. And also that precious, that sweet, and that yummy. (Not that I miss it for a second - I love the stage I"m in!)

Wonder Woman said...

This wasn't the post for me to read today.....or maybe it was.....

--your exhausted, bra-less, chocolate-gorging, refusing-to-do-dishes Spanish Fork reader. Yes, that it how I introduce myself to your friends

JoLynne Lyon said...

This post sparked such memories! I was a stay-at-home mom until the kids were all in school, and I gotta tell ya, that was way harder than my current career. We'll leave out the anecdote about when the inlaws walked in during an impromptu potty training session that started right after I got out of the shower... Well, ok, I told you a little but we'll just leave it there.

annie valentine said...

For the record, my husband and I had a fight about that post this weekend. Reading this was like icing on the cake. You two should seriously get together when I die.

Katherine said...

I'm got to join the camp that says parenthood is tough. Staying home with the kids is tough. Is it something I would like to do? Yes. But it's hard. At least, when my work is so difficult and painful, I eventually get to leave. And I get a paycheck. Moms get neither. Although I can't really complain. I never did laundry when I was home.

Motherboard said...

Now I want to know what Annie and her husband fought over.

Teaching people to poo in the toilet and NOT in the corner is HARD BUSINESS. I'm glad that Avon lady bitch-slapped you my friend! ;->

DeNae said...

Hey, everyone, I think I should say that I'M the bad guy in this story!! Me, the one who was all sassy about SAHMs! Sheri is absolutely the sweetest, most darling person in the WORLD! (OK, you may resume commenting)

Lara said...

I'm glad you learned your lesson. :)

Never fear, though, a little snarkiness never hurt anyone. At least I hope not.

Motherhood is hard lately. Sometimes it's easy. But when it's hard, I have only myself to blame. And perhaps a little bit of PMS.

Arya said...

I would start buying avon online too...lol but I totally understand the pms and love your acronym for it...

Cheeseboy said...

There is so much right about this post, I don't know where to begin.

You had me wondering what is actually harder, so I did a little research:

Adult Water Buffalo range in size from 400 to 900 kg (880 to 2,000 lb) for the domestic breeds, while the wild animals are nearly 3 m (9.8 ft) long and 2 m (6.6 ft) tall, weighing up to 1,200 kg (2,600 lb); females are about two-thirds this size.

Thank goodness for Wikipedia's accuracy.

So, I think technically pulling water buffalo around is technically harder because if you get an adult male at 2,600 pounds, it's pretty much impossible.

This post was perfectly crafted comedy from the first sentence to the last Avon reference.

DeNae said...

Cheeseboy, I am so glad you've joined this party!

Kazzy said...

My husband and I received devastating news today about the sudden death of a friend, but after a day full of reflection and sadness, this post was a welcomed laughfest. I love your guts.

Melanie J said...

You know what IS the hardest job in the world? Working retail in upscale women's fashion in the fanciest mall on the West Coast and acting like "The Customer Is Always Right" makes ANY kind of sense when those people are clearly out of their minds. So now I stay home (via a five year stint teaching 8th grade language arts--they also make no sense) and I do it for one reason and one reason only: it is not for the cleaning up of the vomit nor the being shat upon (it's not swearing if it sounds Biblical, is it? And um, feel free to delete without hurting my feelings) or having my culinary skills go not just unappreciated but reviled. And I don't stay home because I love, LOVE the endless repeats of Yo Gabba Gabba (curse you, cable On Demand), or the perpetual scent of pee coming from the boys' bathroom.

And I'm not going to lie and say it has anything to do with my divine role as a woman.

I stay home because here, I am still the BIGGEST and LOUDEST, and I've got at least three more years where I AM ALWAYS RIGHT. (Then thirteen happens and the streak ends.)

AS Amber said...

Wow. And you thought your post about HR was gonna get you in trouble! SAHMs have it ROUGH!!! Let me give you an insight to my day:

I have to wake up FIFTEEN MINUTES before my big kids leave for school to make sure Avery's hair is brushed & their teeth are clean. That's EIGHT FIFTEEN!!!! Then I have to go back to snuggle up in bed with my baby. Then around 9:30 I have to get up and fix Harley & me a bowl of cereal. Then we watch 9 million episodes of Little Einsteins until we're both so damn smart we can barely stand ourselves. Then we take a bath! Then we take a nap! Then my big kids get home & I fix 12 packs of Ramen. Then it's homework. Then dinner. Then bed.

See? It's hard! Sometimes I even have to do laundry & dishes. Those are the reallly hard days....

Hel said...

I went over to read your comment.

I'm not sure how I feel about motherhood, but I'm with you on the snarky for the OTHER three weeks. And then I read some other "perfect mother" blog and I just about pull my hair out.

Maybe we need our Avon Ladies to help us pull our heads out.

Charlotte said...

I've written about it before, but it is hard to insist I have the harder job when my husband works in the ER. I'm changing diapers, he's sticking his hands up someone's unmentionables. My kids fight, he's wrestling psychotic, stoned patients. (et cetera, et cetera)

Despite getting the rowdy, loud, destructive end of the gene pool with my kids, my husband found a way to out do me. Personally, I think he did it just to win arguments.

Tell Serene duct tape should be required for church and be on a mother's person at all times.

M-Cat said...

I'm really not qualified to speak about SAHM since I never was one, but I can say that being the Mom is the HARDEST! Despite whether you are home all day or not. For working moms, though, I will say, we have to do all that the SAHM's do AFTER we get home from a paycheck job.

Just sayin.......

(and now I will be prepared to be crucified in the commentary to follow)

Braden said...

I see no possible way I could make a comment that be any funnier than the post, which was hilarious, or which will not somehow make someone mad. Thus, I am leaving a comment to tell you how much I enjoyed your post and hope you will continue to make me laugh. I am Switzerland. Switzerland, my friend.

Homer and Queen said...

I love her and want to be her best friend...but not babysit for her.

tammy said...

Laughing too hard to comment.

Steph @ Diapers and Divinity said...

Oh DeNae, how I love you. (But I might love your neighbor just a TEENY bit more.)

Connie said...

Now we know why she calls herself "Crazy!" or is it "Crazy"!

Lynne's Somewhat Invented Life said...

I've been in a bloggin/reading blogs funk. Glad I checked in with you. Thanks for the chuckles. I'm still in a blogging funk but you've made me a believer that probably reading other's is pretty much essential. Long live snarkiness. And Catholics. And you.

Gloria (The Mamafamilias) said...

The only thing worse than the water buffalo is driving a school bus. I should know - I've done it. EVERYONE should drive a busload of younguns home on an Eastern NC afternoon of 100 freakin humid degrees when they've just come in off the playground - straight to the bus. I used to tell them I had my CDL so I was qualified to go drive a hog truck instead of a school bus - it all smelled the same and at least the hogs couldn't talk.

Ha. my word verification is poneupig

Gloria (The Mamafamilias) said...

And one more thing because I can't leave it alone.

I have a married daughter with 2 young children and I have an unmarried daughter who loves the other daughter's children with everything she has in her, but every time she witnesses a running, screaming, hissy fit she declares, "Aunt Kelly is just not ready for motherhood." I assure her it ain't for sissies.

I've been a SAHM and I've been a not SAHM mom. That particular coin is still tossing as to which one is the hardest.

All I know is, Life's Tough and Then You Die.

I'm just sayin, is all.

Shantel said...

I LOVE your neighbor! Don't worry - I have heard you complain plenty about Motherhood. I know you just had a moment of sympathy for those water buffalo guides, and crap scrapers. It was charity for them - that is all it was...;0)

InkMom said...

I need to meet your neighbor. Because, seriously, she's my future. Except for the Catholic part. And the fifth child. But all the rest? I can totally see it happening. Including her oh-so-needed delivery of your comeuppance, my friend! If she hadn't said it, I would have!

PS I haven't been to WalMart in three years. And I would rather not eat than go to the grocery store with all of my kids. I'm not kidding even a little bit. It's why I'll never homeschool. When am I supposed to go shopping if they don't leave at some point? Summers are already hard. I mean, thank goodness for gardens. And edible underwear.

Gina said...

Hi DeNae! It's Sheri's Other Mormon Friend. I went to visit Sheri yesterday and I think she casually mentioned that she was the subject of a new blog posting. It was a sidenote in our conversation really. I admit I completely forgot about that little blip of info. But then I received a text from Sheri just now that said, "Did U get a chance to read the blog yet?" Well I figured maybe it was something that might be on her mind a tad. SO, I jumped over to have a peak.

Oh how I love Sheri even more now!
I'm so glad she has you DeNae!
As Sheri always says, "Thank God for DeNae!"

veronica said...

I like your neighbor. I really, really like her!

Donna Tagliaferri said...

I have a very young ward and it is so funny to me how so many women have forgotten the baby years.
Those years were brutal, but I miss them sometimes!!

Sher said...

A to the freaking Amen!
I'm really liking this Sheri friend of yours, even if she does spell her name wrong.
Maybe I'll get to meet her next time I'm visiting you in Hell?

HalfAsstic.com said...

BWAHAHAHAHA! I certainly wouldn't trust anything delivered by your poor friend anymore! Watch out for letters petitioning the HOA to have you removed from the neighborhood. ;-)

Dedee said...

Bwahahahahaha!!!