Posted in C-Haze, life lessons

Alone

My biggest fear… ever… was to be alone.

Recently separated from my husband, I felt the need to analyze that fear. What, exactly, am I afraid of? I wanted to come up with something more specific than “everything”, which is what I would have said previously.

Here’s what I’ve come up with:

  1. Finances and Savings – in short, I suck at money
  2. Single-parenting
  3. Boredom

What I’ve learned is that all the things I’m so afraid of, I’m already doing them. Actively. I’ve been on my own for three months now. Certainly not a long time, but long enough to have survived a few cycles of bill payments, emotional ups and downs, and parental challenges (is there any other kind of parental experience when you’re the mother of 18 and a 12 year old girls? No. There is not.).

I’ve survived. Not only that, in spite of whatever mistakes I’ve made (and yes, even only three months in, I’ve made many), I’m finding this emotion I haven’t felt in a long time emerging from the dust:

PRIDE.

I’m actually proud of myself for a change. I’m supporting myself, my children, and more. By myself. People rely on me every single day, and I come through for them

every. single. day.

It’s still scary, but not in the way it used to be. Now I know I can do it.

I can be alone.

Posted in C-Haze

Blood, Fear, and Normal

One of my goals, and a huge part of my recovery, is to become 100% accountable to myself, and to stop running from the things I’m afraid of.

Three and a half months ago, my doctor ordered a slew of blood tests for me. This was nothing new. My pattern was to show up for my annual physical like any responsible adult, go through the motions by chatting with the doctor about how I’m fine, nothing unusual’s happening with me, everything’s fine. Each year the doctor would order labs, and every year I’d blow them off and refuse to get them done.

I was too scared.

I lived in a constant state of fear, utterly convinced that something was horribly wrong with me, that I was so unhealthy I must be just this side of death. To some this probably sounds utterly ridiculous – and it was – but honestly, it’s what I believed.

It had been five years since my last set of labs, even though my doctor had ordered the tests every single year since then like clockwork. Five years ago my labs showed elevated liver enzymes, and that was it for me. I wasn’t willing to face the issue and quit drinking, so I just stopped showing up for the labs instead.

Problem solved!

Except that it wasn’t.

Finally, I decided it was time to face this. Whatever it is, I need to know. Sober me is not the same person as drunk me, after all. Responsible people get their annual blood work done, and I am now responsible. Dammit.

So I got the tests done. The lady who took the blood told me to expect results “in the next day or so.”

I tried to wait patiently, I really did. I had trouble sleeping that night, absolutely convinced I’d soon be getting a call from the doctor to tell me how sick I am. That the years of abuse I did to my body caused damage that cannot be fixed. I was especially convinced that a decade of alcohol abuse had made my liver shrivel up and die. I simply could not fathom any other outcome, given what I’d subjected my body to, over such a long period of time. My last round of blood tests weren’t exactly stellar, so I figured I was well into cirrhosis-of-the-liver territory by this point.

I’m sober now, yes, but the time I spent on the bottle still outweighs the time I’ve spent off of it.

I kept thinking about the last time I had a drink. How sick I’d been, coming off a several day binge. My body ached – my kidneys ached – and so did my liver. My ankles were swollen to the size of softballs, and I was so bloated my clothes didn’t seem to fit. My head was pounding, and I was shaking. Surely I had been deathly ill. I still remember it so clearly.

Unable to wait any longer, I called the doctor mere hours after the lab had taken my blood (way sooner than within “the next day or so” as I’d been quoted). I asked them to give me the results of the liver function test, even if the others weren’t back yet. They refused, and said they’d give me a call when all the results were in.

This morning (which was only a day later, even though it felt like several lifetimes) I got the call from the doctor’s office.

All your labs are in, and everything looks good.

Huh?!

Liver enzymes? Normal. White blood count? Normal. Platelets and thyroid? Normal and Normal. Even my cholesterol is fine.

The only thing slightly off is my glucose, and even that was “just on the high side of normal,” to quote the doctor.

After spending several minutes working to convince me that he was not reading me the wrong patient’s results, the doctor advised me to watch my sugar and carb intake, and continue with the cardio five days a week.

That’s it.

I’m healthy. It honestly took several minutes for that to sink in. I did not kill myself with my bad habits after all.

I know I can use this experience in other areas of my life. Instead of hiding from that which scares me, letting things morph into these horrible scenarios that only I can come up with, I need to stand up and face it.

Most of the time, it’s not as bad as we think.

Sometimes, it isn’t bad at all.

Just Normal.

 

 

Posted in blood clots, C-Haze, illness, life lessons, lupus, Parenting, pulmonary embolism

The Blessing of the Blood Clot

I had a come-to-Jesus moment recently, and it has shaken me to the core. Forgive the length, but I have a story to tell.

About two months ago, just days before her 17th birthday, my daughter was taken to a local urgent care facility. She was running a fever, was complaining of pains in her chest, and was extremely dizzy. Thinking she had some sort of upper-respiratory/flu/inner ear infection thing going on, I didn’t panic at first. In fact, I had meetings scheduled all morning, so I had my husband take her in so that I could continue working.

Roughly an hour after they left, my husband called me. He told me that the doctor had seen “something” on an MRI that concerned him. As a result, they were loading my child into an ambulance, and transferring her to the closest emergency room. This was the first time I’d heard the words that have since changed our lives:

They are concerned she may have a blood clot.

She’s 16, for heaven’s sake! She’s healthy, she’s an athlete, full of life and vitality. Teenagers do not get blood clots.

Right?

I rushed to meet her in the ER, where the doctors ordered some blood work. Specifically, something called a d-dimer test. While far from fool-proof, this test can help doctors in their quest to diagnose patients with symptoms similar to my daughter’s. If the score is below a certain number, blood clots are not a concern. If it’s higher than a certain number, it’s possible a clot has formed somewhere within the body. The higher the score, the more likely a clot is present.

My child’s score was so high, they couldn’t chart it. The test only goes up to 5,000, and her numbers were “somewhere” above that.

It was all-but certain. My daughter has a blood clot, probably in her lung- a pulmonary embolism if you want to get fancy with it.

The doctor immediately ordered a CT Scan, and while we waited for the results, I hoped against all hope that this was a fluke. That they’d come back and say, “False alarm! There’s no clot! This is nothing a little cold medicine can’t fix!” Part of me knew, however, that I was in denial.

After viewing the scanned images, the doctor told us what we dreaded hearing: our child definitely has a blood clot in her lungs, possibly two. It was either one very large clot that started in her lower lung and curved up to the mid-way point, or it was two clots. Hard to tell. Regardless, immediate action had to be taken.

As he gave us the news, I glanced at my daughter, just in time to see a single tear roll down her cheek.

I was numb.

Arrangements were made to transport her by ambulance to the Children’s Hospital in the city, as the hospital we were currently at was not equipped to treat her. The doctor explained that due to her age, she’s still a pediatric patient, and needed to be admitted to the “PICU”. Nodding my head, I went through all the motions, signed the paperwork for transfer, asked the appropriate questions, and did the best I could to keep everyone calm.

I began calling my parents, my boss, various family members to tell them the news. I felt like I was watching myself talk as I explained what I knew up to that point. Almost as if I was observing things as they happened, but was not actually participating in any of it.

My husband had briefly left the room to make some phone calls of his own, and wasn’t there when the doctor explained the need to get her to PICU by ambulance as soon as possible. When he returned, I filled him in, but stumbled on my words…

PICU

It was then, as I stuttered out that dreaded acronym, that it hit me. Pediatric Intensive Care Unit. My child could die.

I quickly ran from the room, my tears were hot on my face, and I didn’t want her to see that I was afraid. I rounded a corner somewhere, and leaned against the wall, sobbing. All I could think was that I’d thought it was the flu.

I treated my daughter’s pulmonary embolism for the last 48 hours with Nyquil. Who does that?

I tried my best to pull myself together, and the ambulance eventually arrived. Climbing in behind her, I held her hand as we raced to Children’s Hospital, trying to ignore all the beeps and buzzing sounds coming from the various pieces of equipment they’d attached to her body, monitoring… what, exactly, I didn’t know.

She spent two nights in the PICU, with a 24-hour-a-day heparin drip. Her blood was drawn every four hours, and though she was in pain, she couldn’t take pain medicine because of the impact it could have on her blood. They had to monitor her “levels” so closely that they couldn’t risk allowing her to ingest anything that could skew the test results. The heparin, I learned, is a powerful blood thinner, designed to begin the slow process of dissolving what we now knew to be one massive clot in my baby’s left lung.

I spent those nights on the pullout chair in the room with her. She could only have two visitors at a time, which annoyed various family members, as I refused to leave the room, except to pee. That meant only one other person at a time to see her. I didn’t care.

The blood thinner was so strong, she started bleeding randomly. Her nose would bleed, or her gums when she brushed her teeth. Just days before she’d been so full of life, so vivacious, but now, I didn’t even recognize her. She had huge bags under her eyes, and she looked so tiny, hooked up to all those IVs and monitors.

I felt powerless. It is my job to keep her safe. I’ve protected her from the outside world her entire life. She wears her seatbelt any time she’s in a car. I have the passwords to all her social media accounts. She has a curfew. She can’t go to parties without an adult present. But you can’t save your kid when her own body revolts against her. While I was worrying about car accidents, something was happening inside of her. It threatened to kill her, and I had no idea.

Eventually stabilized, the doctors moved her from PICU to a regular room on another floor. Now that her “levels” were where they needed to be, she was taken off the heparin, and put on another, less drastic blood thinner called Lovenox. It’s an injection, and she had to learn how to give herself the shots twice a day before she could be released.

The focus shifted from life-saving measures to finding the root cause of the clot. Blood test after blood test was conducted. Questions about family history were repeatedly asked by specialist after specialist. I felt I had failed her again. I couldn’t answer questions about family history, because I’m adopted, and have no medical records whatsoever. Genetic tests, it was decided, had to be run instead.

Finally, we had our answer.

It turns out she suffers from a clotting disorder called Lupus Anticoagulation. In addition, she has received a diagnosis of Lupus. The two aren’t necessarily related, despite both containing the word “Lupus”. This isn’t something she will heal from, it isn’t something that she can simply move on from.

No, this is life changing.

Lupus, for those who don’t know, is an auto-immune disease. It’s caused by an over-active immune system that is unable to differentiate between one’s healthy cells and viruses. As a result, the immune system is always in “fight” mode. When there is no illness to fight, it attacks the body. Specifically, the organs. Kidneys, lungs and the heart are especially vulnerable. While in “fight” mode, one can suffer various symptoms, referred to as a “flare”.

The blood clot, it turns out, was a blessing in disguise. Prior to its forming, my daughter had no symptoms of Lupus. It’s likely it wouldn’t have been diagnosed for many years, had it not been for this event. As a result, we found out about it before any damage was done to any of her organs. While there is no cure, we can treat this disease aggressively. We have a new definition of “normal”, but also know she can live a full, active and long life despite the changes we know we all need to make.

She was on the Lovenox injections for several weeks. Ultimately, due to her diagnosis, and because we now know she will need a daily dose of blood thinners for the rest of her life, the decision was made to transition her from the injections to an oral medication. She now takes Warfarin daily, along with Plaquinil to fight the Lupus.

Her clot is not gone. That will take many months. We have standing orders at the hospital to have her blood drawn every few days to check her levels. The doctor tweaks the dosage of her medication according to the test results, so we spend every other day or so at the pharmacy getting prescriptions filled, and at the lab getting blood work done…

… over and over again.

She is my hero. In two short months she has gone from lying in the PICU, hospitalized for a week, to defining a new “normal”. She has returned to school full-time, and despite missing several weeks, she’s back on the honor roll. She is also the sole student in her school district to be nominated for a scholarship to a college in our state. She has returned to cheerleading (though she cannot participate in any stunts or anything else that can cause bruising, because she is at risk of internal bleeding). She even has a part-time job as a server at a local restaurant.

With a renewed commitment to service, she has spearheaded a fundraising event (a talent show at her high school) to raise funds for the Ronald McDonald House, an organization that made our stay at the hospital so much less worrisome and dreary than it otherwise would have been.

This, she has decided, will not define her.

Watching her fight- for her life and later, for her quality of life- has changed me in ways I cannot begin to describe. What I do know is that I need to follow her lead. Renew my commitment to myself, to my husband, and to our other child, who at only 10 years old, has been yet another source of strength, determination and dignity throughout this entire ordeal.

In short, I need to be present. More present than I was before, and I need never take anything for granted again.

Many changes have already been made. More are sure to come.

I have been given the most amazing second chance with the most beautiful family on the planet. I can’t wait to show you what we all can do!

Posted in C-Haze, Race, Relationships

Thank You

A very wise man broke down the meaning of truth for me today. I received his message in the form of an e-mail and wanted to share. It reads, in part:

“I like to read your blog not so much to learn the truth, but to learn YOUR truth.  I know your truth is different from [others] truth, etc.  Nevertheless, I want to know more about your truth because it helps me be a better citizen of the world.  It helps me communicate to and connect with people different from my own upbringing and world experiences.”

 

This, along with the support I received from others is why I will keep this blogging thing going for the moment.

Although I gotta warn you all… my ego’s been stroked a bit…

So not only am I stickin’ around, but I’m cocky as hell to boot, so get ready.

Thank you to everyone who offered me their support while I was dealing with my own personal emotional meltdown…

You know who you are…

And you’ve likely created a monster, as now it’s doubtful I’ll ever shut up.

(Smile)

 

 

 
 

 

Posted in C-Haze, Funny, Humor

The Earthquake… Part II (May Wanna Check Out Part I!)

After having to answer to my nine year old for not having earthquake insurance, her little friend (a neighbor kid) stopped by… this is the kid my daughter walks to school with in the mornings. She, like my daughter (and hell, like me too!) was pretty keyed up about this earthquake we’d just had.

She tells The Diva (my daughter), “My mom says God stepped down onto earth this morning, so that’s why the ground was shaking so bad”.

My kid, always the smart one says, “Oh please. That doesn’t even make sense. It’s actually much more scientific than that. You see, all you really have to do is educate yourself about about these things”.

Right- spoken from the mouth of the kid who was (less than an hour ago) running around in circles, arms flailing, yelling at the top of her lungs, “WE’RE GOING TO DIE!!!”

Suddenly she’s Ms. Scientist Lady, ready to educate the masses? Ok, whatever.

We all head out- The Diva’s walking with her friend, I drop my youngest daughter at daycare, and head off to work. I’m secretly wondering about aftershocks, and truth be told, silently obsessing about something I read- Foreshocks. These suckers are scary, so allow me to explain:

Apparently foreshocks are the earthquakes you get BEFORE the real one- the big one- hits. In all my frantic research this morning, I learned scientists can’t tell if a tremor is a foreshock or an actual earthquake until the subsequent tremors occur. If they’re smaller than the original tremor, then they’re aftershocks. If they’re larger, then that means the first quake was a foreshock.

In the 20 minutes it took me to get to work, I managed to work myself into a full blown panic. I was sweating, had butterflies in my stomach… I think I was a little short of breath actually, and shoot- were those chest pains I just felt?!?!

Man, I’m gonna die of a heart attack… it’s not the 10.5 on the richter scale monster size earthquake that I’m convinced is coming momentarily that will kill me. I’m going to literally die of fear!

I was CONVINCED that the 5.2 magnitude quake from this morning was merely a foreshock… that any second now, we were going to get hit with the earthquake of the century. The very first quake that ever broke the richter scale! AAAAAAAHHHHHHH!! (That’s me screaming, by the way)

Yea, yea, I know. I watch too much TV.

So anyway, in spite of my fear, I make it to work, and head inside. Somehow, the morning goes pretty smoothly. I can feel my fear slowly (very slowly) beginning to dissipate. I even manage to crack a smile or two, and begin to think maybe (wasn’t convinced, mind you), just maybe, I was overreacting a tad.

I’m on the phone with a client- one of my company’s largest, pickiest, and most important clients, I might add… when it happened.

HOLY HELL, THE WORLD IS SHAKING AGAIN!!

My computer screen starts swaying, and my desk, chair, and the very floor I sit on starts to tremble. I instantly burst into tears… palms start sweating, heart revs up into high gear, the whole nine yards. I try desperately to keep control of the call I’m on…

“Sir, can you please give me the district you process out of?”

“Yes- it’s New York”

“Ok, Chicago?”

“No- New York”

“I’m so sorry sir. Did you say Cincinnatti?”

“Look lady, I SAID NEW YORK!!!”

“Sir, I apologize if I seem a little preoccupied. We are in the middle of an earthquake… Hold please, while I dive for cover!!”

I manage to place the customer on hold and immediately begin hyperventilating… I’m praying like hell I can fit underneath my desk.

It’s while I’m attempting to squeeze up under there, when suddenly, it stops. No more trembling. No more shaking. Thank you Jesus!!

My supervisor, who had been observing my little breakdown (without offering assistance, I might add)suggested I pick up the phone and finish the call I was on. Hell, I’m glad she reminded me, cuz just that quick, I’d forgotten I had a customer on the phone at all.

Where did he say he processes out of? Seattle?

I was able to complete the call, but not before getting a hug from my boss. I needed it, and after the morning I’d had, I deserved it too.

Thankfully, I have felt no more tremors today…

Praise the Lord, people. Praise the Lord.

Posted in C-Haze, Funny, Humor

The Earthquake… Part 1

At 4:39 AM I was awaken by… what? Seems there was a loud noise, like a train derailing or something… did I dream it? Wait- why is my bed shaking? Then I realize, it isn’t just my bed, it’s my whole house! What the hell? Are we under attack?!?!

Thus, my day began.

I hopped out of bed and turned on the TV. I didn’t know what was going on, but if I was gonna die, I was gonna die informed… not asleep, oblivious to what’s happening. I’m kinda morbid that way. They were breaking in on all the middle of the night/super-early infomercials…

EARTHQUAKE!!!

Huh? We had an earthquake? Crap! What the hell does one do during (or by this point, after) an earthquake? I was going through my mental catalogue of emergency protocols… Let’s see, in a hurricane, you should go to the basement… or wait- isn’t that what you do for a tornado? Shoot! I can’t remember! Oh well, who cares? This isn’t a hurricane OR a tornado! It’s an EARTHQUAKE!!! I think I remember something about a doorway. Or is it a doorknob? Crap again. I know it has something to do with a door…

Finally admitting that I was as clueless as they come, I went to FEMA’s website to learn what in the world I’m supposed to do. I mean, yea, it’s too late to do much NOW, but hey, these things tend to come back or something, right? I wasn’t sure, but if we had a repeat episode, I was going to be ready this time!

I proceeded to learn everything about earthquakes. I learned, for example, that I live pretty close to the larges fault line in the nation. Never really knew that. I live in Missouri, for God’s sake, not California. Apparently this thing could blow at any time, and once it does, I’m pretty sure we’re all doomed. Great. Oh- and emergency protocol is to stand in a doorway, not twist a doorknob or whatever, like I was originally thinking.

Hey, wait a minute. Can I use this as an excuse to work from home today? It only took a minute to realize that no, this thing wasn’t nearly exciting enough to qualify me for a stay-at-home day. Oh well.

Seems like things calmed down pretty quickly, and no major damage was reported anywhere. No schools were closed either, so I figured none of us, my daughters nor I, had much of an excuse to stay home. Drats.

I go upstairs to wake my oldest daughter so she can get ready for school. She has a bad habit of NOT getting up when I need her to, so this time, I decided to use a new tactic- shock value. I ran in her room and said loudly, “Get up! Hey- did you feel the earthquake this morning? Can you believe it? We had an earthquake!!”

Just as I’d hoped, The Diva jumps up immediately. Unfortunately, I forgot one important thing- she is the biggest drama queen on earth. No idea where she gets it from (alright, alright, she may have inherited a TEENY bit of it from me). So not only does she jump up, but she begins running around the room, in circles, arms waving, screaming, “WE’RE GONNA DIE!!! IT’S AN EARTHQUAKE!!! OH NO! OH NO! OH NO!”

She has completely lost her mind! At first, I just stared at her, amazed. Wow. Maybe I should invent natural disasters EVERY morning! Clearly, such things wake her ass right up!

Eventually, I started worrying about our neighbors… she was THAT loud. I told her to calm down, and explained (as if I hadn’t been tempted to run screaming in fear myself a mere hour ago), that there is nothing to be afraid of. I reminded her that we HAD an earthquake, as in past tense, and that there is no danger to any of us at this point. Wonderful mommy that I am, I told her that the best way to lessen our fears is to educate ourselves. We went downstairs, and I let her watch the news with me.

She calmed down almost immediately, and seemed really interested in everything they were saying on TV. She paid very close attention when they explained what an aftershock is, and that while they will likely occur, they will be less severe than the original quake had been. She learned all about emergency procedures, much like I had earlier.

She also learned about Earthquake Insurance.

She gets this “I’m a super-smart brainiac” look on her face and turns to me.

“Do we have Earthquake Insurance?”

So I say, “Uh… what do you know about insurance, kid?”

She says, “I know if we don’t have it, and have another earthquake, and that TV falls off the TV stand, you probably can’t afford to replace it”

Smart ass kid. Can’t “afford” to replace it?!?! Where does she get this stuff?

I hate it when she’s right. I mean really- what would I do without VH1? I’d die for sure- immediately.

To Be Continued…

Posted in C-Haze, Funny, Humor, Memories, Nostalgia

My First Felony… And The L Word

I was 12 years old, in junior high school. I was in 7th grade, and back then junior high was 7th through 9th grade.

I was the shit because my boyfriend was an older man- a 9th grader (can I just say, as a mother, 12 year olds should never have boyfriends! It ought to be outlawed!).My boyfriend got this great idea- let’s skip school!! I knew my parents would kill me, but so what? I’d been killed before.
At this point, I had been grounded so many times that my sentences were running both concurrently and consecutively. My mother had started to run out of things to ground me from, and recently, out of desperation, had grounded me from my own privacy.
How’d she do that? Well, she removed my bedroom door- took it right off its hinges.
So I’m thinking, what do I have to lose? Let’s do it!

The plan was this- my boyfriend, his best friend (also a 9th grader), his girlfriend and I would skip the last 2 periods of class on Friday. My boyfriend said his house was only a 10 minute walk from the school, so that’s where we decided we’d be going (I’d never been to his house- I said I was the shit for having an older boyfriend- never claimed that I wasn’t a total prude though).

I made it perfectly clear- I HAVE to be back at school in time for the final bell of the day to ring. Little hellion that I was, my mother was picking me up for ballet class that evening. May sound lame to some of you, but I just COULDN’T miss ballet… I’d scored an awesome part in the Nutcracker that year and didn’t want to miss my rehearsal!
So the plan was laid out, and all was set.
Friday finally arrived, and little wimp that she is, the girlfriend of my boyfriend’s best friend (got that?!?!) chickened out on us. Apparently she hadn’t been killed by her parents nearly as often as I had, and she was scared. The 3 of us were not to be deterred, told her to suit herself, and off we went…
We started walking, spirits high… we were walking down a nice residential street, the weather was nice, the trees, plants and flowers in people’s yards were gorgeous… Life was good.
So again, we’re walking. And walking. And walking. And then we walked some more.
Finally, I comment about how as nice as this walk has been, it sure does feel like we’ve been at it for a while! I was assured that we were almost there, and in fact still had plenty of time. I guess my signature Swatch watch was broken because I believed them- no questions asked.

Eventually, after what seems like 10 days, not the promised 10 minutes, we arrive. I’m exhausted, and that air that had seemed so nice a short time before had begun to stifle me. I was sweaty, I was out of breath, and I’m sure I was generally unattractive… but I was too tired to care.

We walked into my boyfriend’s kitchen, I dropped my bookbag on the floor, and I help myself to a glass of water. I’m greedily guzzling my second glass when I happen to glance at the clock on the wall… and drop my glass on the floor in shock.

We had been walking almost 2 hours! I had 10 minutes to get back to the school…

Pure panic set in. I was running around the house yelling at the top of my lungs, “OH MY GOD!! I’M DEAD!! THEY’RE GOING TO KILL ME (THEY, meaning my parents of course- I know you didn’t believe that earlier shit about not being afraid of them killing me- that was just talk. I was only unafraid of them when I felt confident I wouldn’t get caught- clearly, this situation was CODE RED)!!”

My boyfriend, with his lame, unhelpful ass, shrugs his shoulders and says, “I’m really sorry… I thought the walk was a lot shorter. I guess you’re going to have to call them to come get you”.

WHAT?!?! Unacceptable!!

I quickly started trying to come up with a plan… I was running through the house, looking for something- ANYTHING that would help me get out of this situation.

At one point, I seriously considered stabbing myself in the eye. How can my parents be angry with me if I have blood gushing out of my beautiful eyes?

No, that wouldn’t work… my parents are ruthless, man. Blood, schmood. They wouldn’t care, and I’d still be killed by them. I wasn’t even certain they’d wait for me to stop bleeding first, and then where would I be? Dead, with no eyes. They are seriously hardcore.

Finally, I saw it. My saving grace. As soon as I laid eyes on it I knew I was going to get away with this (thank God I didn’t stab myself after all- I wouldn’t have been able to see the thing that was going to save my precious life).

A single key. A beautiful, shiny, silver, single key.

I smiled sweetly, and turned to my boyfriend.

“What’s that key for?”

“Oh that? It’s nothing that will help us today… it’s my mom’s spare key to the Mercedes. It’s in the garage because she’s on a business trip”

Oh sweet Jesus- sweet heavenly Jesus, I am saved.

I grabbed the key and ran out the side door to the garage.

I hop into the car, and stick the key in the ignition. I impatiently wait on my boyfriend and his friend to join me. The big chickens were still in the kitchen, terrified of what I was about to do.

I explained as nicely as possible to my boyfriend that he better get his ass in the car- NOW. I had to get back to the school, and I only had a few short minutes left to get there. He could either get in the care willingly, or I’d have no choice but to drag his butt in there.

You see, he HAD to accompany me. How the heck was the mercedes going to get back to his garage after I got to school?

As he was nervously getting into the car, buckling his seatbelt (at my insistance- no need to be unsafe, right? Riding in a car with no seatbelt is just crazy!), another thought came to me. I couldn’t possibly drive to the school, on account of I was only 12!! That would raise a few eyebrows if I happened to be seen.

I decided to drive myself to the convenient store right up the street from the school, and walk from there to the school itself. With any luck at all, my mom would be a couple minutes late picking me up (like she usually was), and by the time she got there, I’d be sitting there on the front steps waiting for her like the sweet angel I am.

PERFECT!!

I congratulated myself on my brilliant plan, my awesome quick-thinking skills the whole way there. Miraculously, I arrived without crashing the vehicle, thought I gotta tell ya it was kind of close- what with that damn school bus getting my way- it almost got hit.

Finally, I arrived at the convenience store and dropped myself off- only about 15 minutes late. As my boyfriend took over the driver’s side of the Mercedes and pulled off, I started running back towards the school.

I was soooo close… almost there… and shit. I see my mom’s minivan pulling out of the parking lot. Of all days to be on time, she had to pick this one?!?! I pick up my speed, and start waving at the van- “Wait!! I’m here!!”

She sees me and stops, waiting for me to get in.

I know what you’re thinking- I’m caught, right? If you think so, you don’t know me very well…
My mom was definitely annoyed, as she’d been circling around the parking lot looking for me. Seeing me run up the street from the direction of the convenience store, she had a couple of questions. Mainly, “Where the hell were you?” followed by, “Where are your books?”

Shit. I’d left my bookbag at my boyfriend’s house!

I climbed into the minivan, mumbling something about how my locker had jammed, and that’s why I didn’t have my books- doesn’t matter, no homework anyway (or so I claimed). I then made some lame ass excuse up about how my friend wanted me to walk her home from school because walking by herself was too scary (you know, in the big bad suburbs of Charlotte and all). I calmly explained to my mother- “That’s why you saw me running back to school- I had left for a minute to walk my friend home”.

Genius.

My mom didn’t believe me- I could tell by the look on her face that she knew I was full of shit. But hey, she couldn’t prove it, so she didn’t really have cause to kill me. You know, probable cause- it’s my constitutional right.

Off we go to ballet class, where I performed brilliantly, of course. I even had the presence of mind to call my boyfriend during our break and threaten to kill him if he didn’t remember to bring my bookbag to school on Monday.

He was so impressed with my earlier driving demonstration that he even said (GASP) the “L” word- as in, “I love you” for the first time before hanging up. See, that’s how cold I was! I had just threatened the boy’s LIFE and he still felt the need to profess his undying love for me.

Alright, so you wanna know how I got caught?

Remember my boyfriend’s best friend’s girlfriend (got that?!?!)? Well, she apparently got an attack of conscience. While we were skipping class, she was in the school guidance counselor’s office ratting us out.

Her excuse? “I just had to tell someone… she PROMISED she’d keep it confidential!!”
Well, promise or not, I got my ass hauled to the office first thing Monday morning. The principle told me she was calling my dad at work.

Yep, my parents killed me that day. Apparently, what I had considered Pure Genius was actually called Grand Theft Auto. Additionally, I learned it’s a felony.

Who knew?!?!