7 Quick Takes 2014 vol. 5: In Which I Throw a Temper Tantrum


My husband and I have a sort of unspoken policy that we don’t give excuses. When the field trip money gets turned in late, when we have to turn down a position at church or school where we are desperately needed, when we have to back out of a commitment we have made – we don’t give an explanation for it, we just apologize as best we can and move on. Sure, people get angry or hurt feelings, but it’s better than the alternative which is that they just flat out don’t believe us. What we have found is that if we tell people what is really going on in our lives, they think we are making it up. It seriously sounds like we are just really bad liars who come up with a list of excuses in an effort to sound plausible. You know, it’s the kind of thing you see scam artists do all the time, they give too many details. We used to give details. But we either got people who stopped believing anything we said or people who constantly looked on us with pity. We became somewhat of a joke in the parish office for a while, because people could always count on a good bit of crisis drama coming from our household. It’s not like we were calling them about it either… they just knew. So we just stopped complaining.

But this week. This week just takes the cake. It’s actually a little longer than the previous seven days, but not by much, so I’m counting it all. And I will enumerate my list of crappy things. This is one of those weeks when I stand in awe of just how bad a week (or so) can be. I almost uttered the dreaded phrase, you know the one, it begins with “What else…” but I stopped myself because I really just do not want to know.

I know that I have a lot of things to be thankful for. Trust me, they are very much on my mind right now. And I know that there are many, many people who have it much worse than I do, but today I will officially submit my entry in the “My Day Sucks Worse Than Yours” contest.

1. I am not pregnant any more. I told the whole story of my miscarriage here, so I won’t recount it for you now. But this is how we began the week: with heartbreak. The physical part is done, but there is still a lot of road ahead of us to travel on this one. We have to get the baby back to the doctors office, call the cemetery, go to vital records and I don’t know what else before our little one can be laid to rest. It feels very overwhelming, and I want it to all be over. I have this terrible fear that when I give that little vial full of stuff that I think is my baby, the doctor will tell me it is just a clot and I missed catching the baby at all and it just went down the toilet. All I can do now is wait.

I promise, while the rest of this list is bad stuff, none of it is as sad as the above paragraph. I just had to get the worst over first.

2. Croup. The little ones have been hit with varying severity with croup or a virus vaguely resembling it. Most of them came through it with just a lot of snot, fever, and horrible sounding cough, but my little asthma girl didn’t fare so well. We’ve had multiple nights of waking her every four hours for a breathing treatment, steamy showers, and time outside at night. This is the first time I have seen her truly panicked that she couldn’t get enough air, and that was very scary. To add insult to injury, she had been doing so well that just last week, her allergist gave us a plan for weaning off of the inhaled steroids that she gets every day. She has to have had no oral steroids for 2 years to be considered beyond the need for daily preventative meds. We had made it to one and a half years. Now we are back at day one.

Midnight Breathing Treatment

3. Stomach Virus. Now you are starting to think I am making things up, admit it. Just wait. When your 19 year old can only sit and cry in between her vomiting, you know its a bad one. The nine year old was next, with a single episode of vomiting – scrambled eggs, in the car. Next to fall victim was my 11 year old daughter, who threw up with such force that she broke blood vessels in her face. I was next, with the two year old close on my heels. Two year olds throw up on everything. Oh my heavens, this virus was brutal. I don’t think I slept at all for a full 24 hours. The vomiting was bad, but the headache and body aches were much, much worse.

Among the small blessings found during those days were a cancelled G.I. doctor appointment and rescheduled jury duty. Molly had a long awaited specialist appointment on Tuesday, the very day I was very sick. There was no way I could take her, so I figured we would just have to call and take the hit of whatever fee they give same day cancellations. But they called us first, and told us her doctor was out sick and would have to reschedule. I was also supposed to have jury duty the following day, but they accepted my excuse and just gave me a different day. Whew, two bullets dodged! Thanks to God for having mercy on us!

4. Adult Child Problems. Because this child is an adult, I don’t feel like I can share their business, let me just say that this is a severe, ongoing, and worrisome problem or set of problems one of my kids is having. Please pray for this child.

5. Lice. One of my kids keeps popping up with lice. I have been doing All The Things to deal with it, but they just keep coming back. I do not have the time to spend two hours a night going through heads and changing sheets. Lice combs don’t work on her, her hair is baby fine and combs don’t catch anything, it has to all be done by hand, removing nits with fingernails. One. At. A. Time.  The other kids don’t have them ( I check regularly!), and she is currently clean as a whistle, but this morning I found one on my head. and I’m just all squicked out and overwhelmed because…

6. My dryer is broken. Again. My house is still buried in puked on towels, blankets, and clothes. I need to be able to dry everything on hot to kill all the bugs, AND MY FREAKING DRYER IS BROKEN. I quit. I Quit. I QUIT.

I officially give up on this dryer which needs to be fixed about every three months now. I’m buying a new one. This particular dryer is sent by the devil himself and breaks every time we are sick. EVERY. TIME.

7. I don’t have anything else to add to this list. THANK YOU JESUS! Our cars are working, my husband has a job, we have electricity and running hot and cold water, I have a stove and two crock pots and a microwave and a dishwasher. We do not have any life threatening health problems, we have family and friends who love us and can put up with a little temper tantrum every now and then. We have our Church and the ability to go to mass and receive Jesus without threat. And so very much more. This terrible “week” will be over at some point and life will go back to “normal”.

We will be okay. I know that. We know how to laugh at a week like this, because we have to! There is some funny stuff here, even when our hearts are heavy and we need a break.

But darn if I didn’t want to rattle off this list to a certain teacher who got crabby about a delayed field trip payment.


  1. Wow – you have had an unbelievably difficult week. By the time I got to number seven I was wishing that I could come over and pick up your laundry and do it for you. Can I just say how inspired you left me after reading this? Your thankfulness for what you have, your ability to laugh even – wow again!

    • Thank you! I was actually bailed out by y mother in law, who is always looking for ways to help. She came and picked up loads and dried them for me. We got all the puke laundry done and enough uniforms for the kids today.

  2. You totally win for terrible week! The dryer thing just blew me over – of all times right?

    • This dryer has had impeccable timing with when it breaks down. Its almost ten years old, so it had its share of good years. But I swear now it can smell throw up in the house and it just goes into a coma.

  3. Ugh! I am so sorry that you’re have such a horrible week! I am sincerely sorry about your miscarriage. The entire miscarriage experience is probably one of the most difficult things I’ve ever been through. Ever. My heart and prayers go out to you.

    I hope that (starting now!) your week is wonderful. Or at least that you can hide somewhere and indulge in chocolate or something.

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