There, are you happy now?

“Me happy.”

“Dada happy.”

“Mama ….”

This is where I of the 20-pound under-eye bags pipe in: “Mama … crabby” right before keeling over on the wood floor.

Yes, Mama is crabby. More on that later.

Girl from the East has learned a new word. Yes. We are glad it is such a nice word like “happy.”

Better than fuck or scrotum.

Not that they aren’t lovely words. Just not when you are attending a dignified family function and trying to demonstrate to your relatives that you really are capable of parenting a small child to productive adulthood.

Girl from the West (who is now 14 and probably still uses those words out of my earshot) once belted out, full-decibel both of those words, in completely inappropriate situations. The horror.

Fortunately for me, Girl from the East doesn’t know that game yet. Maybe she’ll never learn to play it. But she is on a “happy” kick right now. And she didn’t learn it from her crabby mother.
I don’t aspire to crabbiness. It just comes naturally. See this post for details.

I’d love to tell her “mama happy.”

But, Mama tired: I haven’t had a full night’s sleep in a week.

Mama stressed: 24 hours of unnecessary panic as garbled phone message from mammography clinic indicates for some unintelligible reason I need to come back for more tests. Turns out it’s no big deal. But still…

Mama sad: Just came back from a long weekend in Chicago. There are very few places we visit that make us miss home. They all look better, smell better and sound better. People have jobs and are making money and seem “happy.” I realize I do a lot of justifying to stay in this living arrangement.

And there is nothing worse than coming ’round the bend back into our home city, whether it’s by highway, airport or back road, it is always about as rewarding as opening a carton of curdled milk.

So, let me get some sleep, forget about where I live and then maybe I’ll be “happy.”


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"It's not the tragedies that kill us, it's the messes." --Dorothy Parker
April 2008
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