Sometimes I feel as though I won the genetic anomaly/recessive gene/devolution award. If I didn’t look almost exactly like my mother, I would be convinced that I was some sort of stork situation because no one in my family has the host of non-life-threatening but annoying disorders that I do. (I know, last week I was all rant-y and this week I have started out whining. Stick with me. I’ll turn it around soon.)
One of my main “issues” is Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). Millions of women have this fun hormonal issue, too. I believe it is one of the leading causes of infertility. Luckily we chose to have one child because it took me 5 months to get pregnant when I was 25. Feel free to click on the link if you want a more informed description, but I mostly wanted to tell you about it today so I could find my favorite PCOS quote:
“… I found out I had polycystic ovarian syndrome, which sounds absolutely terrifying, but apparently just meant that I was going to get hairy and fat and I’d have to take all kinds of drugs to conceive.” –Julie and Julia, Julie Powell
Great, right? Now, me? I’m not especially fat or hairy, but I do have some sexy acne, occasional pain, mood swings, and blood sugar issues – most of which can contribute to my least favorite and most disruptive problem. But I don’t want to talk about that today. I don’t have the ability to be flip and try to make light of it. Instead I’d like to tell you about some women for whom I am most grateful.
This is in no way an exhaustive list, just an attempt to highlight a couple of great women. Fortunately, I am blessed to know many amazing women. One of which being my mother-in-law.
Stop scoffing. I’m not going to lie. My MIL and I do not always see eye-to-eye. For the last few years she has lived with us during a couple of months in the summer and there have definitely been times that I am completely baffled by her. Luckily some of her more endearing traits shine through.
Garage Sale Guru
Some of my absolute favorite things have been purchased for us at a garage sale by my MIL. There are too many to show or tell you about, but they include clothes, knickknacks, and housewares.
Kitchy, maybe? I love this shirt, and if you don’t you probably won’t like me either. But my MIL knows me well enough to get eccentric pieces at bargain prices.
My MIL will talk to just about anyone about anything. Last summer this got us some used-but-better-than-what-we-had screens when our neighbors upgraded theirs.
She has a child-like sense of wonder about just about everything. On my really bad, stress-filled days I could really care less as she beams about the beauty of the day. I’m even likely to get angry, but sometimes I can take a deep breath and enjoy the beauty with her. Like when she “dances” with Jasper. It looked something like this:
Though neither my MIL nor Jasper look at all like this picture from the most hilarious/terrifying book ever, Dancing with Cats, it is representative of the whimsy.
My MIL can paint, draw, play piano, and generally be creative with the best of them. This is definitely appreciated by Monkey; they have a blast together.
Two Monkeys in a Tree
Monkey and my MIL were both born during the year of the Monkey. (I know he has the most clever nick name ever. Don’t be jealous.) They have such a special bond that, seriously, I get a little choked up thinking about it. Now that he has learned how to use my cell phone, he calls her almost daily. And they have a blast playing during the summer.
Speaking of grandmas, my grandma would have turned 94 a couple of weeks ago. She and I were also born during the same Chinese year and shared a pretty special bond.
When I was looking for a good picture of my grandma I came across this one, which will need some explanation.
Good stuff, huh? Based on where I found this in my photo album, I believe it was taken in 1993. (Conspiracy theorist/friend-to-militia- members Papa is covered up by ocean jasper so he won’t have my head for sharing his image on the internets.) I chose it because she’s dressed up and happy — two of my favorite things about her. Also? Can you tell this is a 3-D picture? I’m in the foreground to “pop” — seriously. We are a gadget- and infomerical-loving bunch, and some one bought this fad in the ’90s.
I know if my grandma were here today she would encourage me to be positive and fearless, things that don’t always come naturally. Love you, Grandma. I’m working on it.