Saturday, May 31, 2008

and then after this morning

i had all kinds of things in mind to post about today.

i thought about the possible reason why the opwo didn't appreciate my clothing style for the past eight or nine months or so.

i thought about the great time that sugar and i had together this morning, yard sailing and eating orange rolls and chocolate chip cookies, talking and laughing really hard and loud.

i thought about some of the recent grandbaby tales and the continuing story of the old girl, ginger.

i thought about how much i love the way i feel on the new anti-depressant and about the only obvious side effect i've observed, which is flatulence.

i have photos i shot of some amazing flowers and something else that i can't remember right now.

i thought about my journey to the greenhouse with jr today and the plants we purchased and our plans for dividing and replanting and newly planting colors and shapes in the gardens.

and then, my mom called. rather, jack called to tell me that my mom had called and wanted to talk to me. he said that my aunt judy died this morning. while that might seem innocuous enough to most people, it was, for some reason, very upsetting to me.

likely the reason for my distress has something to do with the part that my uncle lee and aunt judy played in the last year of my gramma's life. i guess that most of you readers are fully aware of the saga of gramma, lee, and judy. and while i tell myself regularly that the story of those three is in the past and over and done with and i can't change anything about it, as i sit here typing this post, i am astounded at how upsettingly anxious i feel.

the anxiety will most likely continue for a couple of weeks, until the memorial is over and i can somehow put this all aside again. as time goes by, i experience fewer and fewer painful memories and events, but life seems to be all about the surprises and more often than i like, something bubbles up again to stir up the pot.

it's a full boil right now.

Friday, May 30, 2008

4 times cute

I know you've been holding your breath, waiting for the update to the story of the presentation and even more, the update on the seriously CUTE OUTFIT.

Here it is.

I went down to the lobby of the hotel in Eden Prairie to check out, wearing, of course, my new, super deal, CUTE OUTFIT, and who did I meet at the check out desk? The opwo of course. As I approached her, she turned around and said, "What a CUTE jacket"--I held my breath. Then she said, "And what CUTE earrings, both today and the CUTE ones you wore yesterday"--and I breathed in a shallow breath. Then she asked, "Where did you get that jacket?" I said, "I got it and the pants at Kohl's and if you can believe it, I paid less than $25 for the entire outfit because it was on sale, 80% off," and I KNEW I HAD HER THEN! She loves a bargain almost as much as I do.

And then it happened. She said, "THAT IS SUCH A CUTE OUTFIT."

Even if the presentation hadn't been the highlight of the conference (because it was mostly pictures and attorneys only love actual tv commercials more than pictures and because I pointed out that many of the screenshots of the Access database that I was describing showed the pink and purple decor that was chosen by an IT guy for an adult woman to use--although it looked to me like something that a 10-year-old girl would love--and one of the other attorneys said that the presentation matched my outfit and the computer screen gave me a soft, glowing look), anyway, even though the presentation was swell and warmly received and everybody wants one and the boss's boss loves me even more than ever and is delighted to see that I seem to be doing very well,--even without all of that, after I heard that it was a CUTE OUTFIT and it was a great deal, well, I was complete.

Today I put on a pair of jeans and a pink cami and pink fitted shirt with my favorite striped socks and black clogs and some pink, dangly earrings and do you know what? It didn't matter at all what the opwo said. Because, clearly, I know a cute outfit when I see it and I know a comfortable outfit when I feel it and, well, I'll be telling myself about how cute I look from now on.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

so this is how it went

Tomorrow is the big day. The wearing of the CUTE outfit. I'm seriously glad I have it because with my recent history of saying the wrong word (a perfectly acceptable word, just not the one I thought I was saying, i.e., cucumber for computer, sandwich for subject, etc. etc.--just keep on laughing, family) well, anyway, that word mix up thing could happen tomorrow during my presentation to the lawyers and paralegals and it seems that the only thing that could possibly save me at that moment is the CUTE suit--excuse me, CUTE OUTFIT-- I'll be wearing that will totally distract everyone in the room.

Except, today, while standing outside the offices here in Minnesota with the opwo, who was talking about how nice the temperature is (one of three yearly good weather days in Minnesota--aka, Home of those Pesky Timberwolves), the conversation turned to the temperature of the cabin of the plane she was on. She talked about how the captain of the plane must have been crazy or something because he insisted on having the heat turned all the way on and everybody was dying of the heat, including the guy near her who must have not checked the weather in Minneapolis, because, hello, why else would he have been wearing tweed?

Man, I can hardly wait for tomato afternoon when my presentation will be over.

Monday, May 26, 2008

update time again

I know that you are all eagerly waiting for a bit more of my stories--the new hiking plan, the drummer's travels, the darling girls--so, because I love my internet, this is for you.

About the hiking plan. Let me just say that while things didn't go exactly to plan, we are both recovering nicely and will attempt to start up the plan again next weekend. Okay, that might have sounded a bit dramatic. What happened was that Jack came down with a cold--a bad man cold--that would have laid me low too. He was down, staying home from work for two days and then crashing after work the rest of the week. And then on Saturday, it got worse. Moved into his chest and gave him the deep, deep man voice. Totally hot that voice.

Then on Saturday my lower back went into spasms when I moved one of the bar stools three inches closer to the bar. It's only taken three days of sitting around taking aleve and muscle relaxants so that I'll be back to normal just in time for work tomorrow.

Hiking update next week. We hope.

About the drummer and his travels. As I said earlier, I really feel like this is the start of real life for him. While I'd love his life to be without pain or inconvenience, that isn't life. Which is the only reason I can come up with that explains why his luggage (a sleeping bag and everything he'll wear and need for the next 10 weeks) was lost. again. Isn't that just like real life? You start out with high hopes and very quickly, something comes along and helps you recognize that life has its bumps.

About the darling girls. Most recently Audrey. She (and her parents) visited last night. That girl is another one who has it all going on. She's got that adorable curly blond hair and those big blue eyes and the deepest dimples in her cheeks. Last night, she again displayed her smarts. Audrey is a nonstop chatter. She has a lot to say and has no trouble voicing her thoughts. It's just that she speaks a foreign language. The only words that her language has in common with English are bye, kitty, mama, dad, and dog. But, she recognizes many things by name in English--for example, when the dog barks, she swivels around to the sound and says, 'dog?' And she has started to understand the pleasure of sitting on gramma's lap while we share a book. She recognizes fish, ball, frog, fork, and many other pictures including egg, which was her favorite picture last night. After I pretended to pick up the egg and eat it, she quickly got the idea and sat on my lap eating eggs for, oh, I'd say about a half an hour. She didn't mind if her mom or dad had some eggs, but she wasn't about to feed them the egg. They had to get their own egg. It is truly amazing to watch these girls develop.

That's the update. Oh jeez, I almost forgot the BIG news. This week, I'll be headed to lovely, tornado-struck Minneapolis to attend a corporate legal department get together and while I'm there, I'm on the agenda to explain one of the applications I use in my job to see if it will work for other company locations. While the idea of telling a bunch of lawyers and other paralegals about how I do something is intimidating enough, my biggest concern was--obviously--what to wear? Since none of my favorite suits fit comfortably, I told Jack I seriously needed to go shopping. He agreed and offered to go with me.

Let me just say that I may never shop without him again. I had in mind another black suit--the usual work clothes. But not Jack. He found this adorable--might I even say, CUTE--suit jacket. It's a tweed jacket made with pink, blue, white, tan, and black yarns. And best of all, while I don't even want to look at the size tag, I've discovered that size doesn't matter. Fit matters. And this adorable jacket fits. And it was on sale--$84 marked down to $12.80. JACKPOT!

We also found a pair of slacks that fit perfectly that are black and white tweed and look so dang good with the jacket. And they were marked down from $54 to $8.80. BONUS!!!

Omigosh--a whole CUTE outfit (because I already have a couple of cute--seriously they're cute--tops and some great shoes--sensible and stylish even) and the CUTE outfit cost less than $25. This outfit doesn't even require a CUTE outfit label from the opwo. For that price, it is more than CUTE. It is adorable. It is colorful. It is stylish. It is the perfect size. And it's mine for less than $25.

Even if the presentation somehow falls apart, it won't matter. Because I'll be wearing a new, adorable, colorful, stylish, well fitting, amazing bargain outfit. And I will feel good about it.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

the real adventure begins

I drove the drummer to the airport about an hour ago and I had the distinct feeling that he was about to start his life. That feeling brings a certain amount of melancholy, but also a calm assurance that he is ready.

Friday, May 23, 2008

life with my dad

Yesterday was my dad's birthday. He is now 83 years old. It is hard to believe he could be as old as 83 because that sounds so old. And while I realize when I see him that he is getting older and more frail, I still think of him as my young funny dad.

My dad was the fun dad in the neighborhood. He regularly bought ice cream bars from the ice cream man--not a bar for each of us, or even a bar for his kids and the neighbor kids. No my dad bought cases of ice cream bars and put them in the freezer in the garage--and he left the door to the garage unlocked--so that anybody who asked could have an ice cream bar.

Every summer, my dad would get out our swimming pool, which, at the time, seemed huge, but was likely not huge. It had four rings around it that had to be filled up with air before the pool was ready to fill with water. My dad would get out this old maroon and silver vacuum and he'd change it from sucking to blowing and fill up the rings. Then he would fill the pool with warm water by hooking up the hose to the washing machine faucet. And then, every night after work, when the neighbor ladies came by to chat, he would inevitably pick up one of them and toss her into the pool, clothes and all. And everybody laughed and came back to visit again.

My dad was a carpenter. He could build anything--including our camper and my playhouse. My best Christmas was the one when I woke up and found a playhouse in the backyard that my dad had built in his spare time that winter. On the outside, it was painted to match my parent's house. It had real windows and curtains and was bright yellow inside. It was big enough to hold all of my little girl crap--a couple of tables and chairs and all of my barbie stuff and my baby doll stuff and my dressups and the cupboard I recently refinished for Breanne. It was the best place to set up and and play an all-day game of Monopoly or Risk, and even though my dad originally made it for all of his kids, it wasn't long before it was clear to everyone that it wasn't a playhouse, it was a dollhouse and I would be deciding when it was time for the boys to get out.

I have many fond memories of time spent with my dad--the places we saw and the things we did--like the nearly-every Sunday drives to Evanston or Coalville or Heber where we'd stop and eat dinner or if the drive was after Sunday dinner, we'd find a Dairy-Queen type place and stop for ice cream cones. Even at 83, my dad still loves to go for a drive and check out stuff that he reads or hears about. He is still delighted whenever I visit or bring my family to visit.

I've always felt safe with my dad, very loved and valued. Up until the last few years, I can honestly say that my dad had never said a harsh word to me, and I guess that it isn't too surprising that there might come a time when we would disagree about something. I'm just glad it doesn't happen often.

I love you Dad. Happy Birthday and please have many more.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

jack says

No one--not once--has ever told him, 'hey, cute outfit'.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

about that jazz

Almost a week has passed since the Jazz were stopped on their way to the finals.

My last comment about the playoffs in general and the lakers in particular is this:

Even if you don't buy into all of the negatives that are out there about kobe, there is one thing that I think we can all agree on.

And that is--kobe doesn't need help from the refs to be a great player.

I credit Jack with that insight. It rings true to me.

it isn't just the baggy pants

You may recall a previous post about some women I know who regularly discuss their weight loss successes. To be accurate, that was the conversation on that particular day that was griping me, but deep down, secretly, it isn't the real issue.

The real issue is that one of them has taken on the persona of "only possible woman in the office who knows anything about fashion", aka opwowkaaf, or opwo for short. The opwo is the person who convinced me that I needed to begin shopping at Ann Taylor. And, well, I must confess that I love the little details in the clothes I buy at Ann Taylor, like the soft linings in the pants and the little tucks and tiny buttons and pockets in just the right places.

Yes, I do love a sale at Ann Taylor. But that isn't really the issue. The issue is that somehow, we have allowed the opwo to declare what is "CUTE". As in, 'those are cute sandals' or 'that's a cute top', or the ultimate, "That's a cute OUTFIT!" Often, the declaration is followed by, "Is it new?"

One time, about a year ago, she declared that I--ME, the older woman in the office--was wearing a cute outfit. And I still remember very clearly that THE OUTFIT was a gray wool skirt and a black cashmere sweater with a white cami underneath and black tights with black flats. And black and sterling silver posts.

Seriously, ever since that day, my goal has been to wear a CUTE OUTFIT again. But no. I have occasionally worn 'cute sandals', and a couple of times I wore a 'cute top', but never again have I heard those magic words--CUTE OUTFIT.

I really thought I had it today. I wore a white loosely fitted cami with an unbuttoned white fitted shirt over it and a new khaki skirt and my new white eyelet fabric wedge sandals--the big bow on the top is made of that fabric, and, well, they are definitely cute.

I was right. The sandals were CUTE. But not the outfit. To be honest, it wasn't new either. But it felt so so cute. Lucky for me I was swamped with work today, so I only felt the bitter sting for a brief moment first thing this morning.

Never fear internet readers. I will continue with my attempts to find another CUTE OUTFIT. And I will keep you updated. And you must keep your fingers crossed.

Monday, May 19, 2008

hikers? us? ya baby

You may recall previous posts dripping with despair over my sudden, substantial weight gain.

A few days ago, I went into the kitchen and shared some of that despair with the drummer (a slightly built 21-year-old with muscles on muscles from hours and hours of drumming and marching and carrying a drum while marching). He listened to my wailings and calmly pointed out that in order to lose some of that weight, I was going to have to quit eating so much crap food. I thanked him for that bit of information that I'd never thought of--not once--before that moment.

A few days later, I entered the kitchen and again bemoaned the slow process of losing weight. The drummer was sitting at the bar, observing and listening carefully to my whining. His response was that if I wanted to lose weight, I'd have to get off of the couch and start moving more--in other words, add exercise. Again, I was stunned--stunned-- by his brilliance.

Last week, again in the kitchen, again the drummer, as I walked to the fridge and took out a diet coke to drink. The drummer watched me pop open the top and take a long satisfying drink and said, "You've just got to get rid of the caffeine and drink more water if you want to be healthy." Wow, smart kid, huh.

Hello--of course I know all of those things. I've just never really had to pay any attention to any of them. Hate me if you must, but my life has been one of eat what I want, when I want, as much or little as I want, move if I want, sit if I want, and drink all of the soda I can find. It was perfect. Until I went mad last fall and ended up taking drugs that were supposed to help me feel all better but didn't and instead helped me pack on enough weight to really bring me down.

In fact, that weight came so fast--or I was so fuzzy during that time--that I went from a weight of one hundred something eight to one hundred something three and never even saw the 15 pounds in between those two numbers. (I can't make myself even admit on the internet what the middle numbers are, but just know that I totally missed realizing that I'd gained them.) Yeh, I know, wah, poor me.

Jack asked me the other day if I'd like to start going on walks on Sunday mornings. I was all over that. We started yesterday. We drove up past Sundance and took off up the back side of Timpanogos. Not the hike to the cave. No, we started up the mountain to the top. Jack got me to agree to the whole hiking thing by telling me about the beautiful wildflower meadows to be seen on the way up the mountain. Now that I think back, I realize he didn't just come up with this hiking idea over the weekend. He's mentioned the wildflowers a couple of times--not to trick me into hiking, just because he knew I'd truly enjoy seeing them.

We talked to the skinny ranger boy at the trailhead before we started. (You know, those guys in the green pants who are always young, skinny and bearded. I'm certain they run up to the top of the trails and back down several times a day just to check on the snow and trail conditions. And because they can.) Ranger boy said we could probably hike for 15 minutes before we'd hit snow and have to turn back because it isn't safe to walk on the snow when water is running underneath it, melting it from the bottom.

As we walked off, Jack and I exchanged knowing looks and both considered that it would probably take us at least 30 minutes to an hour to make the 15 minute hike.

Can I just say that we really know ourselves? We walked until we reached the first waterfall that was fed by the melting snow. It may be a 15 minute walk for Ranger boy, but it was easy an hour for us. It could have been a lot longer had we not come across smaller patches of snow for Jack to put down the back of my shirt and on top of my head and neck so that I could cool down because I was too dehydrated from the 32 oz diet coke I drank on the way to the trailhead.

Jack and I have set a goal to make it to the top of Timpanogos by September of this year. Our plan is to walk several days each week at the parkway and continue with our Sunday hikes on local trails so we can survive the 11-mile hike in September.

By the way, the view on Sunday was great. Even without the wildflower meadows.

This is the view from the waterfall we hiked to. I know it looks easy. It should have been easier. But we're old and fat. Maybe after a few more days of walking and hiking I won't need the Advil so much.

This is the view at the start of the hike. If you look really carefully, right in the middle of this picture, just below the big snow field, is a little tiny white vertical line. That's a waterfall, but not the one we got to. It's above the one we reached. Not way far above, but above.

What a great way to spend a morning.

Friday, May 16, 2008

the wee girl and the family picture event

seriously, i chose just a few out of the literally 100's of pictures grandpa k took in only 5 minutes.

enough already

jack pointed out this afternoon that while i've felt that i'm falling down again, that perhaps what has really happened over the past week or more has been a series of events that joined together to become the perfect storm. i am holding on to that concept until i catch my breath or surface for air or see the end of the tunnel.

until then, enjoy this.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

one last try for today

i've tried and tried to download some pictures but blogger isn't talking tonight.

and now, finally, the old friend has settled down for another long sleep, i hope.

and i will post the pics some time soon and all will be amazed by the number of pictures cory's dad took at one sitting...

back later.

while i wait to feel calmer 2

instead of ranting and raving about how much i despise the extra weight i am carrying around, or the women i know who on a daily basis comment to each other about how baggy their pants are getting, when i have lost more weight in the last six weeks than either of them, until i want to either smack them or crawl under my desk with my heater, i will...well...i will think of something wait, i know. phen phen. yeh, that's the ticket!

okay, not really. i will use no capital letters in this post but i will stop the whining. and i, well, thank you for letting me vent.

while i wait to feel calmer

i forgot to point out in last night's post that another noticeable improvement is that the music is back. not the ocd same eight bars of a silly little ditty over and over. the music. bits of songs i know and love. new songs i've made up for the little girls. the music. one of the best parts of feeling better.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

before i watch the JAZZ game tonight

I need to blog about something I realized recently.

I feel better. As in, perhaps, better than I ever remember.

And these are the ways I can tell.

1. No more of the suicidal plans or thoughts. I can go about my day just thinking, and not have one single "you could jump off of that building" or "you could drive off of that road" "wonder if you really get electrocuted if the hair dryer falls into the sink of water" thought drift through my mind. And no more "hmmm, that seems like a crazy plan, but it just might work" nonstop-thinking plan.

2. I am now free to express my feelings and thoughts to those around me without feeling selfish or bad about thinking about myself first.

3. I have energy. Not the crazy, can't stop moving, stay awake at night to finish my chores, kind of energy. But enough energy to enjoy brushing my dogs, playing with the girls, watching a movie, cleaning up my gardens, and more.

4. I am losing weight--just one pound each week on average, which, at that rate means I will be at the weight I desire by Valentine's Day 2009. But I'm good with that.

So there you go. Ways to recognize that I feel better. I am so relieved to find that all of the talk I've heard and all of the articles I've read are true--the voices who say that medications can help restore normalcy for somebody who is for real depressed and anxious are true.

And now, that thing I took for granted is back--I can get up and live my life.

And feel better.

ps I totally stole this picture from my daughter's friend's website. It's Breanne and her buddy, Spencer. Best friends.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

i'll only say two things

about JAZZ-lakers game 2.

Free throw attempts:



And the other thing? Am I the only one who noticed that booger on the k-man's right jaw midway through the fourth quarter?

just when you think it's safe

a new form of crazy appears. Nothing serious, mind you, just something that makes me want to stay inside or cover my eyes while driving. Or riding. All of which would be fine when riding, but not so fine when driving.

Don't worry internet friends, for I'm certain my appointment with the doctor tomorrow will solve yet another issue, he'll hand out samples of some wonder drug that I've never heard of and tell me to take them for a couple of weeks and get back to him. But before I leave his office, he will tell me all of the side effects, why the magic pills will likely work as expected, and how long it will be before I feel safe or perhaps myself once again. And I was feeling so smug about taking only two morning pills and one bedtime pill. When will I learn and get rid of the smug gene?

This is quite a ride, this crazy.

Monday, May 5, 2008

must post before jr reads yesterday's post

I totally did not forget to mention these items in yesterday's post:

1. Jack's mom and brother came to dinner last night.
2. Jack and I were at our property later than planned and didn't get home until 4:45.
3. The gardens were a total mess all weekend.
4. Jr offered to clean the house, defrost the meat, finish the laundry, and once again amaze me when he remembered that Jack's mom thinks it's important for everyone to contribute something to the dinner party so he asked her to bring some dessert--brownies perhaps.
5. And he didn't charge me anything above the usual weekly stipend.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

what a day or two

Last night, I went to bed exhausted. So exhausted that I couldn't even make myself put the clean sheets back on the bed and instead crawled under the covers without sheets. Please don't tell my mom about that. It was a whole day of goodness--time with Sugar, yardsailing, talking, enjoying; then hours with Audrey, outside cleaning up flowerbeds, gathering rocks and pine cones, shopping at Costco with Jr, snacking, playing in the bath with bubbles and foamy letters; racing that ended with that idiot, kyle busch slamming into Earnhardt when he was about to win his first race in two, count 'em, two years--okay that wasn't so much goodness. But the rest was exhausting in a truly superb way.

Today was another day of goodness. Morning with the girls and family for fresh fruit and muffins and juice before heading to church for Janey's blessing. Then Jack and I headed south to our new property and found the snow melted and the roads clear all the way to the top of our road and our view and our air. So so so glad we found that land.

We listened to the Jazz game on the way home from the property. All I can say about that game and this series is, well, to quote the firstborn, "I think the Jazz are playing Koby (sp?--who cares, really) exactly like they should. They should continue staying close to him, knowing they'll get the same number of fouls called for the team that he'll get called for himself, but perhaps they can desensitize the refs and tenderize Koby." Pretty much sums up my thoughts.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

not one of those normal days

Nineteen years ago today, my life changed again for the better when Jr entered my world. He was a beautiful chubby baby, who even as a little boy, was bright and inquisitive and sensitive to other's feelings and needs. He is still a delight--so thoughtful and fun to spend time with.

And because it was Jr's birthday, one of the things he wanted for his birthday was to see all of his siblings and nieces. We all gathered for lunch together at our favorite mexican restaurant. It was wonderful to see our kids interact with each other--to realize that all of those times I worried when they were squabbling children who would not be able to stand to be together as adults was wasted worrying because they enjoy each other more and more the older they get.

Speaking of enjoying each other's company, Breanne and Audrey were with us at lunch. Once again I was amazed at how different they are from each other. I spooned up some rice and beans and salad for each girl and watched what they did. As the big two-year-old, Breanne picked up her spoon and began delicately eating her food. Audrey watched her carefully and amazingly, picked up her spoon and started using a spoon to eat her food with. She continued to eat for at least ten or fifteen minutes and then turned back into our Audrey--the one who typically has an area two feet around her at arm's length and height with nothing in it because she has thrown or swept everything off of the table and onto the floor. She loves the "I drop it, you pick it up" game and before long, she was giggling in her deep-throated chuckle that grew and grew in intensity and volume until even Breanne was looking at her in amazement. Audrey was clearly enjoying herself and she was simply hilarious. At one point, we realized that she had mushed rice and beans into her nose, ears, hair, clothes, and of course, between her fingers. At about the same time, Breanne quietly said to me, in her high girly voice, "Wash hands, wash hands" because she had noticed a tiny spot of beans on her pinky finger. So different for such similar genes.

Also because it was Jr's birthday, he and I went to the local theatre to watch a live broadcast of our favorite radio show--This American Life--from a theatre in New York to theatres around the country. The show was as usual, time well spent. Especially when spent with Jr.

After the show, the day quite suddenly changed. Jr got a call from the eldest who, along with his wife, was involved in a car accident downtown. They were driving along, slowing down for a red light that changed to green, and as they started into the intersection, another driver ran the light red, driving over the hood of their car and then rolling her suv. Luckily, neither of them were injured, just shaken up, and especially lucky, Audrey was not in the car with them. The other driver was taken to the hospital via ambulance with a possibly broken arm and some cuts, and later on, our two began to feel somewhat beat up. Unfortunately, their car will likely be declared totaled, they'll receive a small amount of money for the car and will be unable to replace the car for the amount they'll receive. A very unsettling end to an otherwise glorious day. Even though it snowed.

For a while several years ago, it seemed that many days were full of unsettling events--enough that several friends thought life in the gardens might make a good drama, although they claimed that no one would believe the story was based on true events. But lately, the days have been far calmer, with considerably less drama and stress. I've become accustomed to those easier days. Today was definitely an exception.