O-B*tch-uary Ch 1

** Once again, the formatting shifted. No indentations at all this time.

At least it is consistent. LOL **

*************************************

My end started on a cold examination table wearing a threadbare gown.

1

Dear Diary

To the Morbidly Curious

The Great Tata Fairy

Dear Friend,

     Yes, Dear Friend, that would be you…my friend. My name is Olivia Carpenter and I have had a happy life…until recently. I have an amazing husband who, surprisingly, I still like after all these years. I have two daughters who impress me daily and friends I wouldn’t trade for a hot date with Gerard Butler (maybe). Then all hell broke loose. My life took a sharp left turn, and this is where it has led me. To you. I want to tell you my story. My way. I want you to see the events unfold from my side of the journey. Make some popcorn, grab a drink and a box of tissues, and strap yourself in…it’s gonna get bumpy.

     Let’s begin with why I opened this document in the first place…

*****

I sent another crumpled-up piece of paper flying across the room causing an avalanche around the small trashcan.  It had been collecting my rejects over the past few hours. Clearly, I needed a larger container. How can this be so hard? How do you write an obituary? The lowest paid journalists do it every day for God’s sake. Did they study it in school? Obit 101: How to crush a life into a paragraph. The thought made me chuckle.

But this is more than that. How do you write your own obituary? How do you take the memories and special moments of your existence and reduce them to a small blurb in the local paper? I vaguely remembered being assigned to do this very thing when I was in high school. It was the “What do you plan to accomplish before you die?” assignment. You know the one where all the guys died in bed with a super model at the Playboy mansion, their own personal wet dream on paper. This was real and not nearly as wet. Had I done any of the things I wrote for that assignment? Did I do the assignment? I always hated Mrs. Formby’s class. Who, in their right mind, tells their class they could earn an extra 100 points in the grade book if they ever noticed her wearing the same outfit twice within the school year? How was that important? How was it grade worthy? I did, however, earn the extra 100 points…and I needed it.

            Just a matter of a few months ago, writing an obituary would have never crossed my mind. Then again, I thought I would live forever. Well, maybe not forever, but at least older than 42. It’s amazing how you wake up like any other morning. You throw your obnoxious alarm clock across the room, stub your toe on the edge of the dresser, and curse the cat who attempted, once again, to push you down a flight of stairs, but within a few hours everything can change. Things that once seemed important aren’t. Priorities change and vacuuming wasn’t one of them, thank God. Paper plates worked fine, because doing dishes stole time, and saying I love you was more important than ever.

I couldn’t find the rewind button or the script writer for my life. Can we make some changes to my story line? Like, can we say, let me live longer and why did it have to be at the gynecologist’s office? Was this Karma’s way of laughing at me? The gyno is an embarrassing requirement each woman must endure multiple times in their lives, and it sucks. So, to have him find the Goddamn lumps makes it so much worse. I would have preferred my friggin’ dentist or podiatrist found them. How bad can a foot lump be, ya know what I’m sayin’? Hell, make it the bratty kid who picks his nose three doors down, but not the gyno. To top it off, he’s hot, like, McDreamy x 2+ a McHottie. See, karma seeking revenge for inappropriate lusting for one’s doctor. Just shoot me. This man had to touch me in very intimate ways, for medical purposes, and now it will forever be tainted because of two things the size of nickels. Nickels…not nipples. I know what you were thinkin’. Get your mind out of the gutter.

       I guess it might actually help you understand what I’m bitching about if I told you the sorted details, so let’s start where this messed up journey started…cue the Scooby Doo flashback sequence.

*  *  *  *  *

            “Mrs. Carpenter, did you happen to notice the lump under your left breast?”

“Yup, and I checked under the right breast too and felt one there. I figured if it was on both sides it was normal.” You know how it is. When you get to be a certain age and you notice weird stuff with your body, but if it is a matching set, you didn’t sweat it. Little did I know, neither was supposed to be there. With a quick check of my right breast, in a matter of one minute, I went from having one confirmed lump to having a matching set. One lump or two…get it? Sugar? Oh, never mind. 

Dr. –Way- too- Hot- took a step back and rubbed his chin, all the while staring at my boobs. Yes, look at them. They are lovely, or they were, until they were invaded by the lump twins.

“Mrs. Carpenter, you need to have a mammogram.”

I shook my head, “Look, Dr. –Hunk-a-licious-, I had a mammogram a few months ago, and no one called to tell me there may be a problem.” I may have said that in an accusatory manner. I may have even offered up some eye rolling and a smirk. I knew I needed to reel in my attitude a bit so I offered an explanation, “The issue is this, Doc, there is no way my crappy insurance is going to cover another mammogram, and I cannot afford to pay for one out of pocket, unless you take gum and lint, and… I don’t think I have any gum.” Stick that in your pipe and smoke it, my inner bitch screamed and stuck out her tongue like a petulant child.

“I will have a copy of your films sent over. I’ll have my office contact your insurance company to explain why another mammogram is required. Mrs. Carpenter, you have two lumps that should not be there. Do you understand what I am trying to say?” He asked with what appeared to be actual concern. Maybe I got a little nervous. Maybe. Kinda.

“Okay. Um… then …I guess,” I stammered as I began wringing my fingers on my lap, “You’ll call me when you have everything set, right? Once the insurance is straightened out, I mean, good luck with that. You will have a chance to look at the films?” I had just noticed the thin gown didn’t feel like it covered enough skin. I couldn’t seem to pull it tight enough around me. I shivered. I must have been cold. I wanted to pull on my clothes, layer upon layer, and get the hell out of there.

Taking my hand, Dr. –Bedroom Eyes- assured, “As soon as I know, I will call, and we will go from there. We will get you to a specialist, if it’s necessary. This isn’t something we should wait on. The sooner we get a look the better. Okay?”

I gave an automatic nod and saw the nurse in the corner for the first time. When the hell did she come in? Had she been there the whole time? I didn’t need her looking at me like that. I didn’t need her pity, and she really needed to back off the red-orange lipstick. It was not her color.

“Can I go now?” I asked while averting my eyes to the extremely ugly linoleum floor.

“Of course, we will get in contact with you as soon as we have some answers,” he nodded and dismissed himself from the room.

Nurse –Lipstick– patted my leg and cooed, “Take as much time as you need, sweetie.”

Take as much time as I need? To do what, crochet a blanket? Sweetie? That’s not very professional. I had a name. It was on the chart she held in her hand. Okay, Olivia, pull yourself together, girl. So, you have a couple of lumps. What are a few lumps? You got this.

I threw on my clothes as fast as I could. As I left the small examination room, it felt like the walk of shame, like I had been caught by the roommate as I snuck out of his buddy’s bedroom after a night of sheet tangling. This walk wasn’t worth it in the least. The embarrassment and the events preceding my trudge for the exit were not nearly as fun.

I didn’t know how long I sat in my little Versa in the parking lot. Sitting on the Dock of the Bay by Otis Redding vibrated through the speakers when I finally came to my senses. What now? Do I tell Tom? Do I tell our girls? I didn’t have any answers. I didn’t even have questions to get answers to, yet. I didn’t even have a diagnosis, so maybe I should just keep it to myself for now.  No reason to worry them, right? Man, I needed a drink.

I checked the time on the dashboard, “Crap,” I am to meet my friends at The Pub for dip-n-drinks and I had three minutes to get there. I grabbed my phone to call Trish.

“Hey, chick-a-licious.”

“Hey, Liv, where you at?” chirped Trish. She and I had been friends for about six years. Hearing her voice took a bit of the panic that had been rising and shoved it to the back of my mind.

“Sorry, I’m on my way. Order me a mojito and don’t eat all the damn dip. Is Alyssa there yet?”

“She called. She’ll be here in like five minutes. You sayin’ I’m a dip hoe?”

“Yup, that’s what I’m sayin’. You be a dip hoe.  I’ll see you in a few.”

I took a deep breath and shifted my car into first gear and then tried to leave the appointment and all it entailed behind in the dark recesses of the parking lot. The problem, I couldn’t leave the evidence behind. The lumps went with me, everywhere. Paul McCartney invaded my space as Live and Let Die wrapped around me like a whisper through the speakers. I cranked it up and tried to let Wings wash away the afternoon’s sour notes.

I had no idea how I got to The Pub. I guess auto-pilot is a real thing. I pulled up next to Trish’s grime coated black Altima. God, didn’t the woman know how to wash a car? Someone had begged her to do just that in the grime of her back window. It made me chuckle.

Alyssa pulled up as I got out of my car. She waved from behind the windshield. She seemed to be beaming. Can a person beam? Well, she was. Alyssa was the newest addition to our collection of crazy, but she seemed to be the missing piece we never knew we lost.

“Hey,” I said as I waved, “I thought you would be here already,” I said as I walked over to meet her. She was late and I needed details on the schoolgirl grin she was sporting?

“Sorry, I got to talking with someone and lost track of time.” I thought I heard a giggle in her voice.

“And…” I nudged.

She grabbed my elbow and pulled me closer, “You can’t tell Trish. I mean it.” The alarm in her eyes was enough for me to agree. “I met someone,” Alyssa whispered as a shy smile slipped across her lips.

“OMG,” I about burst.

“Shhhhh.”

“Sh*t, sorry. Who, where, when, how hot…spill,” I salivated.

“Later. We can’t leave Trish in there by herself. She’ll get us banned from another restaurant for being too rowdy,” she laughed. Alyssa tried to avoid my insistent look to once again show she was the reasonable one.

“Ugh, fine, but I want all the details, all of them. Not the PG13 version either, ‘k? I want all the dirty deets.”

Alyssa rolled her eyes, “Of course, Liv, I will spill.”

We linked arms and bounced to the door of the restaurant like two teenagers who just found out a boy liked one of us. We found Trish sitting in the bar area facing the door with the sole purpose of seeing us when we came in.

“What the hell took you guys so long? I almost ate all the dip,” Trish grinned while a chip dripping with cheesy deliciousness hung in front of her mouth.

Looking at each other we both blurted, “Traffic.” Secretive grins crossed our faces as we took our seats at the table. Realizing we were going to need more dip, I waved to get the waitress’s attention. They knew us here, all too well. We had been having “dip-n-drinks” night once a week for nearly a year now. With a swirl of my hand over the dip platter, I mouthed more, and I knew the order was in.

“So, what’s up in the wild world of Trish?” I threw out there, knowing she would keep the focus on her and off me and Alyssa, at least for a little while. “How’d the interview go?”

“Hell, I rocked it,” Trish shared while reaching for her beer. “You know how it is. I get nearly every job I interview for. My problem is keeping the damn thing.”

It was true. She interviewed well but couldn’t seem to hang on to a position longer than a year. She would be on her best behavior for a few weeks and then the outspoken, can’t-keep–her–opinion-to-herself side would creep out and bite the first person it saw. Normally it was the person who told her to do something she thought was below her skill level. She didn’t understand the concept of making an effort. Nope, she saw it as I was hired to do “ABC,” not “XYZ.” If it wasn’t in her job description, then it was not her job to do. Therefore, she would be let go to find a position best suited to her personality.

Through crunches of chips, Trish sputtered, “I should hear something in a few days.”

“What’s the interview for?” Alyssa asked as she reached for a chip before Trish could get to it and hoovered it into her mouth.

“Bitch,” Trish sneered. “It’s a phone bank for a car insurance company, basically I’d be answering questions about claims and sh*t.”

“Well, that sounds boring as hell. But it beats not working,” I offered with a snort. “I haven’t worked in a little over a year.”

Alyssa looked at me with support in her eyes. “True, but you just earned your degree. It can only help when you are out there looking again.”

“I can hope for the best, but a degree in the easiest classes a community college offers will get you nowhere. You have to take into consideration, I am 42 and you’re 31. Big difference when a company considers hiring someone. The older I get, the harder it will be to find a good job I will love.”

“Ain’t that the truth?” Trish chimed in while spinning her beer bottle in front of her. “I’m older than Liv, better looking, but older,” she smirked, “and I’m still looking for the one company that’ll see how awesome I am and look past everything else.”

I could see this whole work thing bugged her. I knew better than trying to tell her why she couldn’t seem to hold a job. She would take it as an attack and not as a friend trying to help.

“Then why don’t you start that business you’ve been talking about for the past five frickin’ years? You have dreamt of having your own travel agency, what the hell is holding you back? You’re smart, motivated, and bitch enough to pull it off,” I stated as the fresh batch of dip arrived. Yummy, it was steamy, bubbly, and screaming for me to dig in. Oh, did I mention it was frickin’ HOT?

“Holy crap, holy crap, holy crap,” I sputtered as I was dumb enough to have scooped up scalding hot dip and dropped it into my mouth. I proceeded to suck down half my mojito in the attempt to cool my tongue, letting an ice cube soothe the burn.

Alyssa shook her head at my stupidity, “You do that every time. When are you going to learn? If it’s steaming and too hot to touch, then you don’t shove it in your face,” explained Alyssa, in her ‘I am talking to a five-year-old’ voice while she attempted to stifle a laugh.

“I wanted to make sure I got some before Trish moved in on it,” I whined while sticking my tongue out in hopes the cool air would help. It didn’t.

“Shut up, it’s not like I was circling it like a pack of wolves,” Trish whimpered with her lower lip stuck out in a mock pout, raising her eyebrows in my direction.

Our fun-loving taunts went on for another hour and a half before we declared the successful completion of this week’s “dip-n-drinks” night. I wish I could say the reality of what was literally sitting in my chest left my mind, but it would be a lie. I felt comfortable lying to myself, at least for a little while. It was time for us to return to our respective lives. We settled up the bill as we usually did. We each threw down twenty bucks, knowing the balance was well below the $60 lying on the table. This offered our waitress/waiter a good tip for putting up with us. We always made it well worth their efforts.

As we said our goodbyes with quick hugs in the parking lot, I knew Trish was on her way home to her husband and twin boys. I was on my way home to Tom and my girls and Alyssa was headed home to her dog and maybe this new Mr. Mysterious, which I had to find out more about. As I hugged Alyssa, I reminded her she had some spilling to do and I would be calling. With final waves we got into our vehicles and we were off, each going in different directions.

I felt good about my decision to not say anything about the doctor’s appointment to the girls. Alyssa would have tried to reassure me that there was nothing to worry about, and Trish would have gone ape sh*t crazy while we tried to calm her down. Instead, I got to spend an hour and a half of not focusing on the “what ifs.” The question then was should I tell my family? I was thinkin’ no. I thought I should wait until I had something to actually tell them. Right then, I had nothing more than a few questions and two lumps. Maybe I should have named the little f**kers, so they didn’t seem so menacing, Thing One and Thing Two, or Righty and Lefty, or Chunk and Lumpy? I felt a small smile slowly creep across my face, and I willingly let it take over.  As I pulled into our driveway, I decided it was nothing to worry about until it became something to worry about.

Tom held the door as I stepped onto the porch, “Hey, babe, how were the twin tornadoes?” he asked with a smile and a kiss.

“Ya know, one of these days I am gonna tell ’em you call ‘em that,” I smiled as I poked him in the ribs. “They are fine. Trish had another job interview, but that’s pretty normal.” I love this man. Have I mentioned that yet? I do.

I tossed my purse onto the entry way table and moved through the house to the kitchen. “Did you and the girls eat, or do you need me to make you something?”

“Lily is around here somewhere, but Shelly got called in to work earlier so I don’t know when she will be home,” he mumbled with his head in the refrigerator.

“Okay, but you didn’t answer my question. Do you want me to make you something?”

“If you want, I won’t talk you out of it,” he responded with his best cheesy grin.

“I think I have some burger thawed. Do sliders sound good, or do you want something else?”

“Oh no, sliders would be awesome. How about some coleslaw to go on top and baked beans and…” he stopped as he saw the look of annoyance on my face. “What? You asked me what I wanted.”

I shrugged my shoulders, “True. I did. So, sliders and all the trappings it is. Can you see if Lily wants some too, please?”

As I started to gather up the ingredients for dinner, I heard Tom yell up the stairs, “Hey, Lil, you want sliders for dinner or what?”

A few seconds later, I found Tom leaning on the island with an iced tea. “It looks like we are having sliders with the kid.”

“Sounds good, can you help?” I asked as I sat a large onion on the counter in front of him, “Here, cut up the onion while I start the sliders.”

He rolled the offending stink bomb back towards me, “How about I do the burgers and you do the onion,” he quipped.

What is it with guys? They can kill and gut an animal but refuse to cut up vegetables. “Fine, if it will make you feel manlier, then go for it.”

A look of satisfaction spread across his face, like he won something. I didn’t know what he thought he won, ‘cause if he messed up the burgers then I got to pick on him every time he wanted to grill something, and I would.

The unmistakable sound of a teenager bounding down the stairs reached my ears as Lily rounded the corner into the kitchen.

“Sup, female parental unit?” she asked as she snagged a soda from the refrigerator.

“Sup? Now I know why your English grades were what they were,” I teased as I smiled into those beautiful brown eyes.

Lily was one of a kind, and she would tell you so without thinking twice. She declared herself a weirdy. She was artsy, quirky, and sweet to a fault. Her long dark hair and deep brown eyes pulled you in. She had a dark beauty I liked to think she got from me. She guarded herself from outsiders, but once you broke through the barriers you would find her only fault, absolute loyalty. I worried about her sometimes. I feared someone would see her wonderful, loving and trusting heart, and destroy it without knowing. She was pretty, but didn’t see it for herself, smart as a whip, when she tried, and had the ability to make you laugh no matter how bad your day had been. I was blessed to be her mom.

“What are you up to tonight, young lady?” I queried as I sliced the onion while trying not to cry.

“The boy toy, as you like to call him, will be here in a little while, and we are going to study for an English test. I guess I should put my best stuff on it since you think my grammar sucks. Oh, wait a second. Didn’t I just graduate from high school? That’s right, I did. I be ed-gu-ma-kaded,” she concluded with a smirk.

“So you is,” I chuckled, “Grab the bag of coleslaw for me and a can of the baked beans from the pantry.”

“Yes, mother,” she said in its most proper form. I was amazed she didn’t slap a little English accent on it and curtsy. “Darren is coming over to hang out for a while. We will probably watch a movie or something”

“Well, that sounds…not very thrilling at all.”

Dropping the items I asked for on the island, Lily proceeded to help me make dinner. Bowls, spoons, mayo and seasonings piled up as we created our masterpieces. I looked out the window overlooking the deck where I saw Tom removing the burgers from the grill.

“Hey, Lil, is it me or do those sliders look a little dark?”

“Crap on a stick, Dad.”

“What?” Tom puzzled as he pushed open the door carrying a plate of something resembling bark.

Lily’s eyes bugged as she looked at the shriveled disks of meat, “Those look more like rejected hockey pucks. What the heck did you do to them, use a flame thrower?” she taunted. They were burnt, really, really burnt.

“Hey, I just wanted to make sure they were safe for my family to eat. I wouldn’t want you to end up with mad cow disease or something.”

“We appreciate your undying devotion to your family.” Lily said with an over exaggerated bow. “I am so sorry we are such a hardship and a burden for you to bear, oh great and wondrous father o’mine.”

“Damn right, and you all would do well to remember it,” Tom nodded in agreement with a satisfied grin on his face and arms crossed over his chest.

“All right, we get it. Now set the table, will ya? Does anyone know when Shell is due home?” I wondered out loud. “Will she be home for dinner?”

“Why, yes, I will,” Shell sang walking through the back door. “Did you miss me? I know you did. What’s for dinner, and what is that God-awful smell?” she asked as her nose twitched at the offending odor.

“Oh, that? It would be Dad’s poor attempt at sliders,” Lily snorted.

Shell admonished her dad as she offered him a hug, “Aw, Tubs, you ruined the sliders? It is a sad, sad day in the Carpenter house for sure.”

“Okay, Uggo, I ‘d like to see you do better.”

“I work at a burger joint. Duh, Tubs,” Shell quipped as she stuck out her tongue.

“Okay, guys, dinner is on the table. We can torment your dad while we eat his charcoal briquette burgers. I guess you should have sliced the onion like I suggested to begin with.” I winked at Tom. I knew he tried, but missed, and I would never let him live it down.

We all took our seats, and within seconds Shell proceeded to regale us with tales of her work antics, which included her co-workers and the ridiculous rudeness of customers. She was such an animated character. She opened all her stories with, “So get this,” and barely took a breath until her tale was done. I have to be clear here, she was not asking for advice in anything she said. She just wanted to share the activities of her day. She was our sixteen-year-old spit fire. So active, she ran in her sleep. Shell was the polar opposite of Lily in every way, blonde, blue eyed, vivacious, and as strong as they come. Be warned, if you looked anywhere but her eyes while you were talking to her, she would rip your face off without blinking twice. The only real thing I worried about with Shell was making sure we had enough money set aside for bail. She was something else. She was another blessing to count in my world.

“I asked my supervisor for more hours over the summer. I told him to call me first if someone calls off or doesn’t show, so I can buy my own car. I’m sick of having to share,” Shell snipped. “I hate having to schedule when I can have the car, especially when I don’t know if I’m gonna get called in to work.”

“Sounds good to me, that means I get the car all to myself,” Lily smirked between bites.

Leaning back in his chair and taking a deep breath, Tom questioned the situation. “Hold the phone there, girls. Lil, what makes you think you would get free reign of the car if Shell buys her own? I don’t think that sounds very fair.”

Pointing out the facts, Lily stated, “Hey, she’s the one who wants to get her own car. I’m cool with the way things are.”

“It would also mean you couldn’t leach off of the gas I put in the car. When was the last time you filled the tank, Lil?”

With a chuckle and sarcastically sweet smile, Lily rolled out, “Sucks to be you. Why should I put gas in the car if you are more than willing to do it, duh?”

Watching my family joke and argue about such minor things made me fear how they may handle something big, really big. Like, lumpy big. The discussion ended as dinner did, with no real resolution. We all gathered up the leftovers and carried them back into the kitchen to be put away. We cleaned up the mess and loaded the dishwasher in a matter of minutes. We made short work of a menial task, and then we scattered to the four winds, or at least the four corners, of the house. Lily was with Darren; Shell was texting everyone in the known universe and probably a few unknown. Tom was channel surfing like a pro, and I escaped into the shower.

Climbing into the tub I felt the hot water roll over my head and shoulders. I selected the shampoo and began the ritual of washing my hair. I tended to start at the top and work my way down.

I felt them. How could I have ignored them for so long? How could I have pushed aside the events of the day? I ran my hand over one lump, then the other. They were nothing, right? They were just some extra bits of me, right? Kind of like the cellulite that attached itself to my ass, or the unexplainable goat hair that kept creeping out of my chin. Just a couple more flaws were all they were. Why couldn’t I stop touching them then? The door opened.

Tom sauntered in and pulled the curtain open with a flourish which would one day rip down the vinyl screen.  “Hey, baby,” he addressed me with a wink, his fists on his hips. He turned his head to the side and puffed out his chest like the character on a Captain Morgan ad, “I’m checking to see if you need any help washing those hard to reach places. You know quality control and all.” He announced with bouncing eyebrows and a wink, he eyed me from my toes to my nose.

“I’m pretty sure I have it under control, but thanks for the offer.”

“You sure? I’m a body man after all. I could feel for imperfections in your chassis.”

“Imperfections?” I shrieked, “Wow, how does your foot taste? Was there a bit of toe jam in there for flavor? You sure stuck it in your mouth pretty damn quick…and almost all the way up to the knee.”  He dropped his head in shame.

“Sh*t, I guess that means I get to go watch TV, doesn’t it?”

I nodded my head as I reached for the soap. Tom left in a sulk I knew wasn’t real, but whiney none the less. I ran a quick razor over the areas that called for it, and washed the rest of me, all the while making sure to avoid the two things that were hard to miss. I got out and wrapped a big fluffy towel around my body and twisted one turban style around my head. Pulling my pajamas from the drawer, I sat on the edge of the bed and lost myself in a daze of nothingness. No thoughts, just staring at some unseen spot on the wall.

“Hello again, wife, how’s you?”

“Hello husband,” I blinked into awareness, “I is good, you?”

Flopping back onto the bed and resting his head on the palm of a bent arm, Tom said, “Not bad, not bad at all. What great adventures did you go on today?”

“Same sh*t, different day. You know, I ran to the grocery store, post office, bank, doctor’s appointment, and took Oliver to the vet.” I rattled off in no particular order. I shrugged my shoulders as if to say it was all no big deal.

Perking up a bit, he asks, “What’s up with the Lolly Monster?”

Wow, he heard vet but not doctor. Should I be offended? “Nothing, he was due for his shots and a physical. Hey, speaking of Oliver, can you tell Lily it is her turn to take care of the litter box,” I asked as I bent over to buff my hair with a towel.

“Why me?” he whined. “You know she is gonna pop a cork when I tell her. I don’t wanna,” he sniveled and stomped his feet like a child.

With my jaw hanging slack, I stared at him in disbelief. “Good Lord, man, how old are you?”

“Twelve, and if you ever wonder in the future, I am perpetually twelve.”

“You definitely know how to act twelve.”

He exited the room to go torment our daughter with chores as I finished climbing into my pj’s. Throwing on a robe, I strolled out to the living room to stare at the idiot box for a little while.  Yeah, Teen Wolf was on. At least I was guaranteed an hour of thought-free entertainment. After an hour or so, I decided to give it up and go to bed. I hoped to collapse into sleep the moment I climbed into bed, and I did just that.

I can’t say I had a restful sleep, but it was sleep none the less.

**************************************

** If you want to keep reading, click a link below and see what happened to Olivia and her family. **

## Something funny…When I finished O-bit, I entered it into a few contests. Some would send feedback (if you paid extra $$). One feedback said, “No wife would talk to her husband the way Olivia does.” Um, I talk this way to my Hubs. Get out from whatever rock you are hiding under, sir. Welcome to 2020. ##

Polish your sparkle and keep twirling.

Find joy. Be joy. Enjoy.

I’m always looking for new friends!

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