hot plate kate

rants and ramblings freshly served

Summer Snippets…Modesty — July 17, 2017

Summer Snippets…Modesty

On my errands today, I several women overdressed for the summer heat.  I just can’t understand why women are told they must dress in layers of clothes because of their religious beliefs.

To make matters worse, one woman was with a man wearing a short sleeved shirt and shorts.  I thought I would have heatstroke looking at these women with their headcoverings and extra layers.

I went to a Catholic school for grades 1-12.  There was always a dress/uniform code that had modesty in mind.

I can tell you, for all those who advocate modesty, dressing a certain way does not guarantee that people will treat you differently or have a better opinion of you.

I’ll keep wearing shorts.

Summer Snippets…Cover Up — July 16, 2017

Summer Snippets…Cover Up

A battle must be going on in my mom’s brain.  Things she once did very well, she seems to have forgotten.  Yet in another part of her brain, she knows that appearances are very important.  So she does her best to spin a tale that all is well.  Oh, how I want to believe her.

Summer Snippets…Savor —

Summer Snippets…Savor

Life has been stressful this summer.  My mom’s health is declining,  My sister is not handling the situation well.

When I am at home with my children and husband, I try to savor every moment.  In the house I grew up in, stress from outside could mean turmoil inside.  The stress was like a snowball gaining momentum as it came down the hill.

I’ve always tried to do things differently as a parent and as a wife.  Sometimes it is hard, as there is still this deep down tendency to want to lash out at others.

I am grateful for my family.  They are my soft place to fall, a safe port in the storm.

I have been savoring every moment with my family.  Soon school will start again and I won’t have so much time to enjoy with the kids.

I’ve been trying to make our home one where others can savor as well.  I truly enjoy doing thinks like making a nice meal.

Of course my husband and kids know what is going on with my mom.  I just don’t want that situation to be the dominant theme in my home.  There is still plenty of love to go around.

Summer Snippets…All Day Text Drama — July 11, 2017

Summer Snippets…All Day Text Drama

That damn invention called a smart phone sits there, threatening to rattle my peace with a vibration that yet another text has come from my sister.

She has been texting me all day long some days.  Texts about trivia.  Texts about how hard she has it.  Texts about how she is better than me.  Texts where she is aggravated that I haven’t responded to her sooner. Texts where she is angry. Texts about how she does more to take care of our mom, continually neglecting the fact that she has agreed to take care of things for my mom for the short term in exchange for PAY.

Maybe I am just too old, but sometimes I’d like to flush the phone down the toilet.  My husband and I don’t do the all day texting thing.  My kids might do the all day texting thing…but not with their mom.  I text, sure, but about boring stuff…what time to pick up the boy, or that we need milk, blah, blah, blah.

There is no time too early to text, or too late to text.  When I am around my family I have just taken to turning the phone off so I don’t get jumpy when I hear the phone vibrate. When I am at work I just leave it in my purse.

Technology is nice, some of the time.  Maybe I am a freak, but I just don’t get this expectation of having to communicate with someone all day long.

Summer Snippets…Odd Woman Out — July 10, 2017

Summer Snippets…Odd Woman Out

My mother is aging and she needs more help.  She is trying to bounce back after a hospital stay.  In our own way we are each trying to help her.  It is scary to travel on the interstate to see your mom so much you barely remember your trip, you are so busy thinking of all of the family drama.

My sister wants to make this a contest.  She has done so much, according to her.  She perhaps has done a little more than me, but I want to scream YOU ARE GETTING PAID by mom to help out.  I don’t expect to get paid, but I sure don’t appreciate your martyr complex when you keep leaving that detail out.

Sister says she has been spending hours upon hours cleaning.  I’m not sure where those hours were spent as the kitchen sink, the refrigerator, stove all have a coat of scum on them.  Perhaps a coat of scum that my mother just does not see anymore or doesn’t have the energy to care about. Maybe my sister doesn’t clean her own kitchen…who knows.  So while she has a temper tantrum, I clean the kitchen. My sister has trashed the part of the house she is staying in. Hopefully when my sister picks all her crap up from the floor, my mother won’t notice that a room that had stayed pristine over the years now has a stained carpet.  WTF.

There is a weird dance between my sister and I.  She has been lashing out at everyone and anyone because she feels left out.  She is mad that her life choices have put her in a place where she is in a financial mess, so god forbid anyone have more opportunities than she does.  Yet she seems to forget that between the three of us, my mom, my sister and I, it is I who have been left out.  Whether my sister and mom are getting along or not, they have always been in constant contact….not so for me.

I’d like to think my sister is staying sober.  Even if she is sober, it seems like her brain has changed over the years in a way I no longer understand.  She is paranoid about hurts others have inflicted on her, but seems to have almost no memory of her behaviors.

You would think after decades on earth together, we would have this family thing figured out.

Summer Snippets…Sun Worshiper — July 9, 2017

Summer Snippets…Sun Worshiper

I’m starting a series called summer snippets, consisting of the good and bad of my summer so far.

I’m sitting in the backyard of my mom’s house.  The sun is hitting me at the perfect angle. They use to say 10:00 a.m to 2:00 p.m. was peak tanning hours.  As a teen I used to spend hours in the backyard working on my tan.  If it wasn’t in my yard, it was at the pool.

The sun has an addictive quality.  Even just a few minutes in the perfect spot makes me feel good.  Back then I don’t think I cared what the effects of the sun would be in later years.  I used tanning oil or lotion with almost no protection.  Silly teenage me.

I confess to even using a tanning bed sometimes. We all thought we looked better with a tan back then.

Today, I much more careful about the sun.  I recently saw a woman my age with the same hair and eye color, looking good with her summer tan.  I am tempted.  The sun will never stop calling my name.

My Garden — June 13, 2017

My Garden

I thought it was my garden.

My humble effort at creativity.

An experiment that has gone on many years.

With the plants I’ve always loved, with occasional newcomers.

Just simple harmless dirt, some flowers and weeds.
I didn’t ask you to help.

But yet you can’t keep your hands off of it.

Of course you think you can make it better, oh and neater too.

We wouldn’t want the garden to be messy.

I thought it was my place to play, to succeed and fail.

No, I can’t have even the dirt.

The Frozen Center of My Depression — June 4, 2017

The Frozen Center of My Depression

I feel like I have been doing well with my depression.  Having more hours of summer sunshine is always helpful.  Usually the effect is like a veil of fog slowly lifting.  Then winter comes again and I have to resist the urge to crawl under the covers.  In winter there is an urge to want to hibernate, and snarl at anyone who pokes me.

Despite the sunny days my depression has a frozen center which sort of nags at me. There is this pull to do something about the frozen center.  It is hard to describe the frozen center.  Perhaps it is the expectation I put on myself to be a contained sort of person, not to do anything wild or let go.  Maybe another person might respond to this urge by dyeing her hair with a color not found in nature.

I know taking care of the frozen center involves doing something.  What that something might be I am not sure.  Would it be a collection of small things, like getting a manicure or reading a book.  Or would it be something larger, like setting a goal and actually committing to reaching said goal.  A real goal, not a crazy one where I set myself up to fail.  Spending more time outdoors certainly couldn’t hurt me.

Maybe some people deal with the frozen center by having a gin and tonic or two.  I sometimes think about that, but given my family history probably not the best choice. Maybe it is time to look for a new job.

The frozen center is a question, but I am not sure what the answer is.

Male Privilege in Nursing? — June 1, 2017

Male Privilege in Nursing?

For the most part I don’t use my blog to talk about work.  I found this piece  on the website Nurse Manifest where author Jillian Primiano thinks that men in the nursing profession should consider their privilege.  She has recently graduated and is about to begin her first professional nursing job.

In my years as a nurse, and even a nursing student, I don’t know that I have seen this privilege amongst male nurses that she talks about.


Mother’s Day — May 12, 2017

Mother’s Day

It is getting close to Mother’s Day as I write this post.

Mother’s Day..what is it?  Many years ago it was a fairly low key affair with my mom. After I was married, for a while it seemed to be a battle for whose mother reigned supreme..his mother or my mother.  While my mother in law was still living, it was expected that we would always put her first..beyond whatever I might wish to do with my mother, or what I might like to do once I became a mother.

These days it is back to being a more low key affair that I spend with my kids.

It is also a time of reflection.  As my kids get older I look back to some of the difficult times I had with my own mom.  I hope and I pray that I can be a mom without all the drama I grew up with.

Today I was thinking about when to step back.  Sometimes it is hard not to hover and interject my own opinions over trivial things.

Most of all though, I think about how blessed(lucky, grateful) my husband and I have been by our children.  They are definitely more than the sum of our parts.