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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Too raunchy for Facebook, even

I was going to post this as a status update on Facebook, but then I thought better of it. I decided it's more appropriate for here, since hardly anyone reads this and certainly not my coworkers or my friends' grandparents who are too adorable and sweet to deny when they wanted to friend me on FB. So - here goes... Just a random sample of the random thoughts that go through my mind on a regular basis:

How is it that on the muggiest day of the year, I still manage to get a bloody nose? If only tampons came in "nose size..."

That's all. Good choice not to put on Facebook, right? I'm sure my own grandparents would agree.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

A Host of Bad Ideas

I kinda feel like this post should just be a list, but I know I owe it to my fans (okay, the one person who occasionally reads this blog out of Catholic guilt and her fear of getting unfriended if I find out she didn't...) to use some foo-foo words and colorful phrases to spice it up a bit. Let's face it - I can't afford to lose my one fan, so it's all about what you, bestie!

Today's post is aptly titled, "A Host of Bad Ideas." I'm not beating around the bush here - I admit I made a lot of poor decisions leading up to the Harpoon 5 miler race this past weekend. As you know (well, assuming you read my last post), my friend gave me about 67 minutes to think about my decision when she invited me to join in her "6-pack team" for this race a couple of months ago. I buckled under the pressure and said yes. Enter Bad Idea #1. As you also know, I was incredibly lazy, unmotivated, absorbed-in-the-mommy-porn trilogy, sick, and much more interested in consuming calories than burning them this winter, so I didn't train much for this run. #2. I caught what I suspect might be a sinus infection about two weeks ago and still haven't recovered. When I'm not coughing my innards out, I'm busy pulling an ab muscle or cracking a rib trying to sniff that elusive snot back into my nose before it sneaks out and drips onto my lap in the middle of an important work meeting, again raising suspicion that I might just need a 24/7 PCA. While this cold/possible-sinus-infection wasn't my fault, I never have been very good about taking care of myself and either preventing or recovering from various illnesses. #3.

Okay - blahditty, blah, blah. Now the good stuff. The next bad idea I had was to drive to Boston from Western Mass (2 hours) the night before the race, *after* I got the kids to bed. #4. Oops - and #4b - I waited to pack until after the kids went to bed, so when I theoretically could have been on the road by 8pm had I planned ahead and packed early, I didn't actually get in the car until 9:15pm. Got to my friend's apartment by 11pm, and stayed up for another hour chatting with her while smiling nicely and petting her two crazy dogs and two crazy cats and secretly cursing myself for a) only bringing black clothes with me and b) forgetting my lint roller. #5, 6, and 7. Fast forward to the next morning - race day! I got up at 7:45, got dressed, washed my face, cleared a space on the table of weeks old chocolate chip cookies, cat hair, and some unidentifiable soggy paper products, and settled in to eat my power bar and drink some chocolate milk (breakfast of champions, right?). Nope - my friend had other ideas. She guilted me into eating oatmeal. She runs quite a bit and she's always been much better at making healthy decisions than I have, so I caved and figured she knew what she was talking about. #8. Why didn't I remember, at that moment rather than two hours later as I was dragging myself toward Mile Marker 2, Quaker Oatmeal's claim to fame is that it sticks to your ribs? Had I remembered that at a more opportune time, I certainly would have known that eating it would not only top my list of bad ideas for this race, but it also would have enabled me to gleefully sing "I told you so..." to my friend while passing her doubled over on the side of the race route. Oh, well - they say "Hindsight is 20/20." They also say "Everyone's a Monday morning quarterback." And now, thanks to this horrific experiment, I know that they also say "Never eat rubber-cement-surpassing oatmeal on a day you need to move faster than an inchworm."

Just before we left the apartment and got into the cab, this same friend reminded me to put on sunblock. I thought she was being a little ridiculous - I wasn't planning on taking *that* long to finish the race, but I listened. Good idea, right? But the bad idea part was this - I didn't ask anyone to help reach the middle of my back - you know, that 1 1/2" section where no matter how hard you try to contort yourself, you just can't reach? And I didn't look in the mirror to really see just how much I was missing, but instead, I just naively assumed it was "close enough." Oh, and I didn't even think about my scalp.Yep - enter bad idea #9.

So - we get to the mayhem that was the race. I pee three times, down a cup of water, pee twice more, and scope out all the people in costumes. I couldn't help but feel bad for the Smurf team - why would they ever think blue face paint, blue-stockinged arms, and long white pants would be a good idea on what was supposed to be an 80+ degree not-a-cloud-in-the-sky day? Perhaps they are all now blogging their own "Bad Ideas" list... We check our bags, by which I mean we tied our three bags together, tossed them into the bigger-than-the-Titanic pile behind a table neatly labeled "Bag Check," and hoped for the best. (Thankfully, though - this doesn't have to be discussed as a bad idea. Turns out no one wanted our three ratty tied-together bags full of used deodorant, antibacterial wipes, melted and passed-over-for-the-spawn-of-Satan-oatmeal power bars, clean undies, and six tubes of chap stick... Phew!)

A bigger race that I've been in before had runners line up at the start line according to how fast they run - 8 minute miles here, 9 minute miles there, 10 minute miles back here, and people who didn't realize this was a race and just got in line to see what was going on but it's too late to get out now over there. This race's organizers, however, thought it made more sense for people to just aimlessly mosey on up to the start line in any grouping they chose. Yes, okay, fine. It was nice to stand in line with my friends, but once the race started, I realized I was in over my head. People were bolting past me while others engaged in some kind of I'm-not-really-a-runner-but-I-swing-my-arms-and-make-walking-look-pretty-fast-thing. I had no idea how to pace myself with such a wide variety of speed demons and Sunday drivers around. I should have either worn blinders, brought my trusty metronome, or just figured out some way to find a good speed for myself, regardless of what everyone else was doing. But I didn't. #10.

For the next bad idea on my list, a couple of things from my past come to mind and I guess a teensy bit of storytelling is in order to help those of you who do not live inside my head to understand it. So - we all know athletes are big into rituals. The pros do it, and if I ever cared enough to watch any professional sport I could cite examples here, but trust me when I say they do. In every sport I've ever played, I've had particular items of clothing that I wore for every game - they were my good luck charms and/or so ridiculous and ugly that they distracted the other team and gave me a slight advantage to make up for all that my athleticism lacked. In high school basketball, it was a certain pair of hot pink scrunch socks (it was indeed the early 90s, but even then they looked horrible with the team's red uniforms); in high school softball, it was a particular bra that gave my girls a little lift and just enough bounce to draw attention to them instead of the ball while I was running bases; and in college rugby, it was a hideous bright yellow turtleneck that I wore under my uniform, even in the hottest months. It seems, then, that bad idea #11 was not realizing that I should have a trusty piece of clothing for races, too... The other bad idea here is closely connected to this realization, and relates back to the nights I chose to read the 50 Shades of Grey books instead of getting my lazy butt on the treadmill and preparing for this race. #12. I joked with a friend that at least while I was walking in this race and hyperventilating from overexertion, I'd have some "entertaining" scenes from the book playing in my mind. Little did I know just how right I was - that I would be dying during the race, and that my mind would be miles and miles away from the task at hand at times... I bet you're still wondering, though, how the lack of ritual clothing and the X-rated book scenes related, you might ask? Well, good question... It seems, somehow, that had I had some ritual undies, not only would my luck had been better, but perhaps my endurance, too - as my running abilities were most certainly sabotaged by the permanent wedgie I experienced and the inability to fix it because I knew the people behind me would have seen it! As I tried to ignore it, I couldn't help but think of Christian salaciously whispering, "Oh Ana..." and then bleep bleep bleep bleep bleep!

Finally, the race was over. I had swallowed my pride and walked part of it, but I still managed to do all 5 miles in 54:35 minutes - that's less than 11 minute miles - and sprinted across the finish line for that glorious victory photo that I later realized was probably not being taken by a race employee but rather a creepy guy in a fisherman's vest who specializes in opportunism rather than photojournalism. #13. I met up with my friends and we quickly found our way to the beer tent. I did make myself drink a pint glass of water first, but then it was five beers in the hot sun with only a tiny bit of lettuce-disguised-as-a-salad and very undercooked ziti noodles with watery red sauce (the latter being loosely defined). Bad idea #14, #15, and #16, respectively. Attempting to again put on my own sunblock: Bad idea #17. Going to a restaurant after the party ended for some real food, in our race clothes, with our bibs still on: Good idea. Ordering more beer and getting into a very serious argument with someone I just met about the sex appeal of various South Boston actors, in South Boston. Bad idea #18. Happily hopping into a cab with no meter but really loud music and a fun-seeming cabbie who then threatened to call the cops because he thought we stiffed him when he jacked his quote by 20%: Bad idea #19. Trusting the same friend who convinced me that pre-race oatmeal was a good idea to now make me a post-race margarita: Bad idea #20.

I think I'm going to end it here. I'd prefer to come up with a few more so I could hit 25 bad ideas and go out with a bang, but I'd run the risk of just making stuff up and no one likes a liar. 20 is a nice round number, and honestly, aren't 20 bad ideas enough for one event anyway, isn't it??? Upon reflection, it seems kind of amazing that I survived that day, with only a slightly bruised ego from not being able to run it all, sore ribs from laughing so much, a sunburned scalp and middle back where I couldn't get the sunblock, and only one picture from the whole day because I begrudgingly left my camera at home for fear of a less-than-exemplary "bag check." If I do this race again next year, maybe I can shave this list down to 15 items or less on my Bad Ideas list? We all need goals in life, right?


Monday, May 14, 2012

Conspiracy

It's true - it was a conspiracy. I know I might sound a little paranoid, but honestly, how else can one explain it? I was so motivated today to get a good quality run in. About 8 weeks ago, I got roped into signing up to be part of a "6 pack" team for a 5 mile race sponsored by Harpoon Brewery (get it? 6 pack?) this weekend. It was a lottery, and my eternal optimist/very manipulative friend assured me we likely wouldn't even get selected, but they were one person down and they were desperate. I wanted to sleep on it and really make sure I was up to this - I haven't really been running since the fall, with a few minor and awkwardly-executed encounters with the treadmill interspersed here and there. Of course, being the friend that she is, my dear chum told me she needed my answer in two hours. Nope, I'm not kidding. However, never one to let my friends down (even if it means selling my soul to the devil and/or embarrassing myself as I crawl to the beer tent after the race I had no business even attempting to run), I begrudgingly told her I was in. I secretly crossed my fingers, though, and hoped and prayed (yes, I honestly did ask for Divine Intervention here) that we wouldn't get selected.

Of course, karma doesn't work that way, and apparently, neither does God. I must have been very very bad in a former life and/or God really does see everything and he knows about the many times that I have fallen asleep during the homily - our team was chosen for the race. Too late to back out - they had my credit card number, my t-shirt size, and my two free beer tickets. What's a girl to do???

So - that was about 8 weeks ago. Since then, I think I've run twice. Yep - I had good intentions, but work was hectic and I had to take stuff home, home was hectic and I had to take stuff to work, and it was cold and rainy and just gross (and that's just my leaky basement I'm talking about where the treadmill is; outside was certainly no better). Then it got to about 3 weeks before the race, and I realized I really need to get on this if I stood any chance of not making a complete fool of myself. Out of our 6 pack team, I don't even know two of the people! One person is my friend's sister, and both she and my friend are cute and energetic and they could look good and have fun rolling around in dog poo. The other person is a friend of mine, who is now an officer in the Marine Corp! Yikes!!! No pressure for me, clearly... The longest race I've done yet is a 5K (3.2 miles) - and I've only done two of those! I've run 5 miles maybe twice in my life. Ever. Pardon my french, but I am sure I'm fu%#ed!!!

Endlessly chastising myself, I knew it was time to start taking this seriously! At the three week mark, I finally dragged myself out of bed at the butt crack of dawn and stumbled my way onto that damn treadmill. (It might have had something to do with my new resolution that I would only allow myself to eat ice cream on days that I worked out, and we all know how I feel about ice cream... Regardless - it worked!) Woo hoo!!! I felt pretty good, and even better later that night when I got an email from Harpoon Brewery reminding me that the race was fast approaching and asking if I'd run that day! (How did they know?) I emailed them right back and said, "Why yes, I did!" (I'm still waiting for their reply saying "Of course you did! That email was sent to you in error - we have no doubt about your commitment to this race or your motivation in your training schedule! You're doing great!")...

So, life is good: I'm getting ready for my race, I'm allowed to eat ice cream that night before bed, and I'm feeling pretty proud of myself. And then it happened. Someone told me about 50 Shades of Grey. This can and will be a whole other post in and of itself, but suffice it to say that I've been a bit distracted since starting that trilogy. I have been staying up waaaaaayyyyy too late reading the books, and it's kind of hard to find the snooze button and mumble "Screw You!" with only three hours of sleep, much less to actually get out of bed and run a few miles! Christian Grey is hot and all, but honestly, he's not doing much for my training. He has, however, been kind enough to give me a temporary pass on running as long as I spend that time with him, and he's even lifted my self-imposed ban on ice cream on days I didn't work out. (Hmm - it's all coming together - he's part of this conspiracy!!!)

Okay - fast forward to now. The week before the race. I'm still absorbed in the books and breaking my ice cream rule almost every night, but somehow, the race date keeps getting closer and closer. I am notorious for procrastinating, but I guess there isn't really any way to cram for a 5 mile race, is there? It's not like pulling an all-nighter the night before can help (although I likely will because I'm so close to finishing Book 2! I can't leave Christian hanging while I go off and run some silly race...).

So - the race is in six days. I know my body and even when I'm in great shape, exercising on consecutive days is not a good idea, so that leaves me three times to run between now and race day! Yikes!!! Last night, I was full of resolve - today would be the day! Last night, I set my alarm for 4:42am (with enough cushion in there for two snoozes), and even managed to tear myself away from Christian by 12:30am. 4 1/2 hours of sleep isn't ideal, but beggars can't be choosers, now can they? Off to la la land I went. And then 4:42 came. And went. And 4:51. And 5:00. And somehow, even though I was alert enough to properly operate the snooze button, my brain didn't actually register what was happening until 5:36. Yep - way too late to get up then and do anything productive. I felt bad, but really - can I honestly be held responsible? I wasn't even conscious!!! I quickly told myself I'd just run in the evening after the kids go to bed, and then I promptly reset my alarm for 5:42. (Six minutes may not seem like much, but when you're as chronically sleep deprived and/or narcoleptic as I am, you'd be amazed what you can do with that amount of time!)

I finally got up and made my way to the shower. While there, I had a brief moment of insanity and contemplated bringing running clothes with me to work and sneaking out an hour early to run before coming home. However, my superego kicked in somewhere between burning my eyes with face wash (for the 87th time) and nicking my knee with my "nick-free" razor (for the 78th time), and I realized what a ridiculous idea that was. Granted, most of the students have left the area and most of my coworkers don't venture out of the building in the daylight, but could I really risk having someone see me? I wasn't worried about getting busted for running on work time (of all offices, shouldn't one like mine understand? We tell our patients day in and day out how important it is to take care of themselves!). Nope - I had bigger potatoes to fry. Like what would I look like walking from my office to my parking lot in running clothes, carrying my fancy work bag, my rain boots and umbrella from a wet commute this morning, my lunch bag, and another bag full of my work clothes? And in the off chance that I did see someone I know, how awkward would it be for them to see me in my running clothes? (Remind me to post some day about the time my boss showed up from vacation to a work-sponsored ice cream social wearing spandex bike shorts and a mesh bike shirt, or the time he came to my office for a morning meeting in his biking clothes and a coworker saw him leaving and thought to herself, "Oh, how nice. Melissa is seeing a transgender client." Moral of the story: work people + non-work clothes = awkwaaaard.) Oh, and last but not least, I'm fairly certain I would have gotten lost trying to find a running route around my work. Or I wouldn't have gotten lost, but ended up running the same short route five times to get the distance I wanted without the fear of ending up somewhere from which I had no idea how to get back.

Okay - so I finally succumbed to the reality that I was going to have to run after work today, after the kids got to bed. Miraculously, they were in bed relatively early (7:25, but who's counting), and I even had enough energy left to change out of my work clothes and into my running clothes. I played a few quick rounds of WWF, said a way too brief hello to Christian, and then I was up and on my way to the basement. I am going to do this!!!

So - we have a tv in the basement, but the speakers are crappy on it and it doesn't really go loud enough to be heard over the treadmill (of course, when sitting in the living room on the first floor while someone else is on the treadmill, I can hear every word perfectly). So I decided to test out my new earbuds, arm band phone holder, and music on my phone. However, staring at a cinder block wall and shelves and shelves of unorganized "storage" isn't nearly entertaining enough, so I decided to have the tv on mute just for something to look at. Due to some confusing and certainly unnecessary changes by the FCC a few months ago, the only way we can watch cable on the basement tv is by watching the same channel that is on the tv in the living room. Okay - no big deal - I would just find some cheezy 90s movie on demand and be good to go. Well, here's Data Point #1 that there was a conspiracy: our DVR was already recording two programs and I couldn't watch anything from on demand. My choices were, then, to watch a show that I didn't want to see yet, or a show that my husband is recording and I could care less about. Ugh. Fine - I set it on the I-could-care-less-about-this show and off I went.

I got my ear buds in without too much damage to my ear drums or my self-esteem, and I was running. Then Data Point #2 came along: My phone (which admittedly this is the first time I've used for running music) somehow got stuck on repeat. I battled and battled (and almost fell of the treadmill), but finally got it working. Phew.

Then - you guessed it - Data Point #3: The show that I could really care less about ended. No big deal, except what replaced it was even worse. Some unheard of talk news show - about things I could care even less about than the show I could care less about that my husband was recording. And, Data Point #3b - because of the way we have the tv rigged up, I can't change the channel without going upstairs and doing it from the main tv. So it was just me and the news, chillin' in the basement. But at least I had my music to keep me entertained.

Enter Data Point #4: My phone stuck it's fingers in its ears, squinted its eyes shut, stuck out its tongue, and said, "Na na na na boo boo." I don't really know what it did, but basically, it stopped playing music. Either I wasn't technologically skilled enough and/or not physically coordinated enough to try to figure it out without injuring myself, so I finally gave up and tossed my phone onto a nearby pile of clothes I've been meaning to donate to the Salvation Army for the past three years. Oh well, at least I could unmute the tv and maybe learn something about the big bank blunder pas that I still didn't really care about. It was better than silence, though.

And then my pants started falling down. Data Point #5a. I tried tightening the drawstring, but in my attempt to untie it while still running, I managed to tie it in a knot. Data Point #5b. Desperate times call for desperate measures, though, and I somehow was able to reach a clothespin from the nearby clothesline and MacGyver my pants so they stayed up well enough and at least didn't trip me or make me moon whomever might have been so unfortunate to be peering in my basement windows at that tine (I know you're out there, you creep!).

Life was certainly giving me lemons, but I was making lemonade, dammit! I could do this! I was determined to run today (and truthfully, getting pretty scared about race day), so I made it work. And then Data Point #6 happened and it was the end of the road. All this movement that my body is so unaccustomed to took its toll. Apparently, my insides got jealous, and they decided that if my outside was moving, well, so should my insides. Now I understand why marathon runners poop without stopping and just let it fall out of their shorts - there's a lot on the line when you're in a race. I don't get how pooping is adaptive to the survival of our species in the whole "fight or flight" theory, but I guess it has a function somehow. However, I was not that interested in finding out... As dedicated as I was to getting a good run in today, I am not so dedicated that a) I would willingly poop my pants, b) I would be willing to put the treadmill on a speed of .1 mph and mop the poop off the belt as it cycles by, or c) that I could ever live with myself knowing that I even contemplated being willing to do either of those things. So - that was it. My time was up, and my run was done. I did manage to get in a decent 2.37 miles at least, and while it's not quite the 3 or 4 miles I was hoping for, it's at least a start.

All in all, I can't say today was a total wash. I will consider this to be what I like to think of as a "teachable moment" and it will encourage me to try harder for Wednesday. Namely, I'm planning to:
1. Ban Christian Grey from my Kindle at 11pm Tuesday.
2. Move my alarm clock across the room so I have to get up (and hopefully gain consciousness) to shut it off.
3. Delete my husband's DVR selections so I can pick something good to watch.
4. Figure out my phone so a) it's not on repeat and b) it doesn't lock me out mid-run.
5. Find a way to either hook up external speakers to the crappy basement tv or hold the tv in my arms while running so it's close enough that I can hear it.
6. Forgo pants all together so I don't run the risk of having droopy drawers and/or falling off the treadmill while trying to get a clothespin and act out my inner MacGyver (both of which would be incredibly awkward and uncomfortable while holding the tv, mind you).
7. Not even look at a spec of fiber or eat a single raisin between now and then.

I think I've got a good plan in place. And really, what's the worst that can happen? If all else fails, at least there's one more run after that one to really get serious about training for this race! :) 

Friday, May 4, 2012

While we're on the subject...

Since we're talking about boobs... Well, since I'm talking about boobs... What's with grown women wearing unlined, unpadded bras when they know they are particularly subject to the deer in the headlights phenomenon? Seriously, I get that it's cold in New England, I do. But all the more reason to bundle up, especially "the girls!" Maybe when you're 22, slutting it up at the bars and trying to find someone to hook up with, perky pokey nipples are appropriate and even strategic, but when you're in a professional setting, say giving a presentation to colleagues, frost detectors aren't exactly welcome guests. I don't mean to sound judgmental here, but just a couple of pointers (no pun intended. Well, sort of...): 1) Wear a bra. 2) Wear a bra with some support. 3) Wear a bra with at least two layers of fabric in the key areas, or padding. 4) If you must go braless or really can't bring yourself to buy a padded or lined bra, at least, for the love of God, wear a shirt with a pattern or print on it!

And what about colored bras under see-through shirts? Again, somewhat acceptable at frat parties and strip clubs (maybe those aren't such different venues?), but not so much at the doctor's office, the grocery store, or the library. Maybe I'm getting old, but I just don't get it. Lingerie is not an accessory and isn't designed to be seen - at least not by complete strangers and in public places. Whatever happened to leaving something to the imagination? And to make matters worse, what about the girls who wear nasty ratty beat up bras and show them off through their ill fitting and/or see-through shirts? Is that due to poor hygiene and/or a lack of a mirror by the door to "check yourself before you wreck yourself" or is it just due to poor judgement and delusional thinking that that actually looks sexy and good? I just can't figure it out, but it's late and I'm not at work. I'll save figuring out this Eighth Wonder of the World for Monday morning, when I can get paid to engage in such a useless (and hopeless) pursuit of knowledge (of course, that word being very loosely defined!)...

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Growing Up Is Hard To Do

Well, apparently, it's all downhill from here. I knew bad things happened to women in their 30s, but I've made it to 34 and only seen a couple fine lines around my eyes, three grey hairs, and a teensy hint of a dimple in my rear. Yesterday, though, was a big day for me in the "getting old" department. I did two monumental things, the significance of which I think no woman younger than 30 and/or not a mother would understand, and certainly nothing a man would understand. First, I gave up all hope that my boobs were going to get bigger. I am under no delusion that I was ever "big chested" - don't get me wrong. However, for  almost the past 6 straight years, I've been either pregnant or breastfeeding (and sometimes both), and "the girls" had reached a comfortable status in life. But just like Cumby's Free Coffee Fridays and the social acceptance of going to class in your pajamas, I guess all good things must come to an end eventually. After weaning my youngest daughter last fall, I was amazed at how quickly my melons shrunk. And when I say shrunk, I don't just mean returned to their pre-pregnancy/pre-lactating size. Oh no - I couldn't be that lucky. My modest melons turned into little lemons. They went right past pre-motherhood size and kept on going. They didn't stop to collect $200 - they skipped Go and returned right to their me-as-an-awkward-and-late-developing-14-year-old-girl size. Seriously. At first, I was hopeful that this was just a temporary deflation caused by my milk drying up and that eventually, all that ice cream and cheese I eat would find its way to the appropriate spots and make my boobs a little fuller (and, if it worked out, my butt a little rounder while I was at it). Alas, though, this was not the case. Oh, I certainly tried - diligently eating bowl after bowl of full fat ice cream, but to no avail. The ladies are small - there's no doubt about it. In fact, they honestly aren't much bigger than the man boobs I noticed on that slightly overweight middle aged man I saw jogging on my way to work this morning who I almost hit because I was trying to get closer to tell if he really was a man or a woman. At least I can wear a push up bra, though, and take advantage of the modern marvels of wire digging into my rib cage, foam that is so dense it's actually heavy and uncomfortable, and lace that does more in skin irritation than it does sex appeal. So - I put on my big girl panties (on my no-thanks-to-ice-cream-less-than-shapely-rear) and kicking and screaming my way out of denial, dragged myself to the lingerie department.

I have to admit, I was insulted by the "Barely B" sizes. Really? Is that supposed to make me feel better about myself? Why don't they just call it the "Not Quite Big Enough" or "Itsy Bitsy" or "You'll Never Amount to Much" size? I'd rather have the letter A in my size and qualify it with something promising and glamorous like "A and Then Some" or "Bigger and Better Than Your Average A" than have a "barely" in the description of anything that refers to my boobs. Oh, well. No one at Maidenform or Bali asked me about marketing ideas, so I ended up just having to go with the options available. I cut off the tags as quickly as possible and spent countless minutes trying to smudge that strangely rubberized and quite durable print they use on the insides to remind you just how small you really are. I'm not the type for plastic surgery, but I just wish God would be a little more appreciative of all the good I used these former sippy cups for and throw me a bone here! Until then, though, I guess me, my shiny new albeit labelless bras, and my mom-of-three-well-fed-kids-sized knockers will just wait patiently and hope that someday, the world will right itself and all these bowls of ice cream will catch up!

The second very grown up thing I did yesterday was see a dermatologist about my not-so-glowing skin. Again, great in pregnancy, not so great now. I had mostly decent skin growing up, and fortunately seemed to pass through the awkward teenage years with only a few potential-date-chances-ruining, school-picture-retake-requiring zits. In fact, for most of my young adulthood, people have frequently complimented me on my skin. It wasn't until pregnancy, though, that that changed. While I did, fortunately, enjoy that getting-fatter-and-more-bloated-by-the-minute prenatal glow for most of the time, I did have scary break outs in the first trimester with all three pregnancies. In fact, it was so obvious the first time around that with my second and third pregnancies, that was one of the first signs I was pregnant. No peeing on a stick necessary - just take note of the pimply break outs (along with the Yoo Hoo and fried eggs cravings), and it was a dead giveaway. After my third first trimester passed, though, I assumed that was it. No more pregnancies, so no more gross skin, right? Well, somehow, my pores haven't gotten that memo. It was so bad one recent week that I even peed on a stick! For various reasons that I really don't need to go into and it would be really awkward and uncomfortable for both of us if I did, I was fairly certain that I was not pregnant. However, my skin was so bad that I figured that was the only possible explanation. Turns out, I got a BFN, but nonetheless, the zits decided to make themselves quite comfortable and invite a few friends, too. In one particularly painful episode, one pimple was so large that a coworker (who is, admittedly, not exactly known for his tact) cornered me and asked if I had a bug bite on my forehead. It was then that, for the first time since 7th grade, I contemplated cutting bangs. Fortunately I talked myself out of such a drastic measure, but the pimple was quite obnoxious and embarrassing. It stuck around so long, though, that it got to the point where I just had to embrace it. I named it Leroy, and when making plans for a ladies night with some friends, I asked them if it would be okay if he tagged along. What else could I do? All the hating I could muster and Noxema pads I could find certainly weren't having much of an effect on him. In fact, he just laughed in my face (well, on my face, I guess) and invited his twin brother Larry to come visit. Ugh!

It was after Leroy and Larry's seemingly endless visit that I decided I needed to take measures into my own hands. I threw out my basic Oil of Olay moisturizer and shelled out a week's paycheck for the Olay Regenerist serum. I also stopped being quite so lazy that my previously cooperative skin had encouraged and started washing my face every night before bed. It didn't matter, though - they still kept coming. That's when I knew it was time - I had to seek professional advice.

So - yesterday, I saw my dermatologist. He was not surprised at all to hear about my uninvited guest woes, and in fact, assured me that this condition was quite common for "women my age." (I'm not sure if that was meant to be insulting or not, but he's a nice guy so I think probably not. And really, I'm only 34... There's not much to be insulted about yet!) Anywho, I've decided to start a medication for it. He says it's hormonal (gee, what isn't hormonal about being a woman???) and this medicine should do the trick. I sure hope so because I'm ready to break up with Leroy and all his self-centered, attention-seeking friends. i guess we'll see how it works...

Well, even though Free Coffee Fridays, almost-respectable sized boobs, and clear skin seem to be days of the past, there is a silver lining in this cloud. As I was reading the patient information insert that came with my new "women your age" acne medication, I saw that due to its testosterone-blocking properties, one potential side effect is an increase in breast tissue. Needless to say, I've got my fingers crossed!