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Bluer than Velvet

Long day. Started with the gym. Stephen Beaver’s been telling Jason the way to do exercises is To Fail, which I’m assuming means Go Until You Die. Like you do pushups to fail, you do crunches to fail. I was always more the Go Until It Really Sucks kind of person, but today I actually went To Fail. We ran about three miles– followed it with pull-ups, machines, kettle ball stuff for abs– and then Michelle was like I SAW THIS THING ON PINTEREST WHERE YOU DO KETTLE BALL SQUATS WHILE TWISTING, WANT TO TRY? and I was all, YEAH, PINTEREST NEVER STEERS ME WRONG!, and there you go. FAIL. After, like, twenty of them, I looked at her. Admitted, “My legs are completely worthless.”

Every last vestige of energy. Gone.

Home, showered, cleaned, folded laundry. Went to the library with Millie and Shelly. I told her someone HAS to think we’re a lesbian couple. We do almost all our errands together with this one baby, no men in sight. Also, in voicing it, realized how masculine my moto-jacket-boot combo is.

Talk about what we’re making for dinner. Michelle mentions this delivery service in the area– they basically pick up your order from any local restaurant and drop it off at your door for a fee. “I thought about that,” I told her, “but it’s so crazy expensive. All the restaurants. The service fee, the driver fee, the tip.” We turn onto her road, and I continue, “It’s not even the money after a certain point, it’s the PRINCIPAL of the matter. I can’t in good conscience pay forty dollars for a grilled cheese or whatever.”

“Just call the taco place,” she tells me. “We have a taco place?” I ask.

“Yeah, it’s super cheap. It’s the cheapest option.”

“I’ll probably try it out next time I want to make a bad decision involving a phone,” I answer, and we both laugh. “That’s like the Becca version of drunk dialing. A 10 PM burrito.”

Hello?” Michelle slurs into her hand, miming a phone. “Yeah, I been thinking about you, all those hot, spicy times we had together… and I need it again. Right now.”

Yeah… you know the place. I’ll probably regret this tomorrow, but right now? This craving is all that matters.

Michelle and I can’t stop laughing. And then I’m like, “I’d be the worst customer ever,” and she’s like, “Oh God, Missus Kimbel is on the phone again, and she’s in one of her moods… I can’t talk to her when she’s like this, seriously.”

Sigh. I love my sister. She’s leaving tomorrow for, like, a week and a half, and I don’t even know what I’m going to do with myself. Probably run outside, if it’s not freezing. Probably avoid the gym. Mostly because men approach you a LOT at the gym, like a LOT; like even if you’re disgusting-sweaty and obviously not in the mood and have a ring on your finger, they’ll be in your business. I like going with Michelle because there’s someone else to interact with and ward off unwanted attention.

ALSO, she’s a badass, and pushes me to fail. Heh.

The kids came home this afternoon and we bummed around. Made dinner together: soup and corn muffins. I promised Addie she could go to the Caramel Apple Store, which is actually this nearby chocolatier that makes year-round caramel apples. She had money of her own– although, in an ironic twist, did NOT want buy caramel apples with it. We stood in front of the glass cases for about five minutes while I suggest options. Fudge? Cookies? Chocolate-dipped Rice Krispies? Chocolate-covered strawberries? Anything? She kept saying no. I’d bent down to her level, to see what was on the bottom row. My hand was on her shoulders.

“Hey,” I told her, trying to be as patient but serious as possible, “you need to still do homework and bath tonight, so unfortunately– we need to pick something. Soon. Okay?”

She didn’t answer.

“Okay, boo?”

Nothing. I peered into her face, and her eyes were closed. “Addie?” I whispered. “Addie? Hey. Hey. Addie, talk.”

She slumped a little and I grabbed her, picked her up, moved her to a corner. Panicking. She was breathing, I could feel that much. “Addie!” I gasped, trying to stand her up. Her body stiffened. Her eyes slowly opened. And then she mumbled, “I had the eye twitches.”

God,” I murmured. “You scared me! Couldn’t you stand up?”

“I could stand.”

“Then why didn’t you? I thought–”

My heart is racing. I moved her bangs out of her eyes. “Could you talk?” I asked, “while you’re having the twitches?” and she shook her head.

We stayed there another minute and I held her. And then I made her pick out something from the counter, because OMG I needed to get her home and safe, and– just fix it.

The eye twitches are not new. She’s had them for about four or five months. Everything I read online said they’re usually benign, and even a brain issue– which was my immediate, understandable concern– should present in a multitude of other ways. Which it wasn’t. For about two weeks, I was stumped, and then I read a forum about a kid like Addie who had twitches, and it turned out to be a magnesium deficiency. We fed her bananas, gave her epsom salt baths. Almost overnight, the twitches disappeared. And they hadn’t been back until now.

I don’t know. I think maybe the slumping is her being dramatic, but– I gave her some magnesium tonight, we’ll see how the rest of the week and weekend play out. Totally freaked me out.

The rest of the night was uneventful. Cuddled with my kids a lot. Jason just put them to bed, and the two of us are about to overdose on recorded television and streaming movies.

Oh, and I talked to my mom! She is DONE with chemo. Yesterday was her very last treatment; she is finished. It’s not really over-over, because it takes about six weeks for the drugs to clear her system, and months before the hair grows back, so she’s kind of feeling mixed right now. There’s a relief, obviously, and I think a frustration in how long the effects are going to be dragged out. It’d be nice just to have a conclusion. Wrap it up with a bow: done.

But. But she’ll be back to her old self by Christmas– recovered, renewed, healthier than ever– and she’ll be here in NC with her daughters and grandbabies to celebrate. And that is amazing news all the way around.

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