Thanksgiving Update

This will be quick, but there’s plenty to update going on at the Wilhoit house. Like pretty much everyone else, my week has been sort of consumed by thoughts of cooking and grocery lists upon grocery lists upon grocery lists.

But this morning, I have something else on my mind. Just a week or two before I found out I was pregnant with Russ, I found a pea-sized lump or cyst on the back of my neck, kind of just back behind and under my right ear at my hairline. My dad has one in the exact same place that recurred after he had one in the same place removed at age 12 or 13, and my mom has had multiple cysts removed from her neck and breasts. Jonathan has them, too, so not only will I always have to keep an eye on these things, but my kids will too. Overall, the chances that it is anything worrisome are slim to none, but as a mom, it’s been eating away at me nonetheless. The thought of anything ever threatening your ability to be here with your child/children is always a scary thing to consider, so I’m going into the dermatologist today to have it looked at, along with another spot on my neck where a mole looks to have changed just a bit. Like I say, it’s probably nothing, but I’ll be a teensy bit nervous until I hear the doctor actually say “It’s fine.” That’s just how my anxious brain works sometimes, I guess.

My dermatologist is a gregarious Greenville figure with a pretty big following (to my understanding anyway), and always gives me a laugh with his jokes. He has told me on a number of occasions, basically, that I have the type of skin that can get by with only coming to see him every two years, whereas Jonathan needs an appointment pretty much every year (he’s already had a few questionable spots removed before – whew!). But I go every year, usually with Jonathan, just to be on the safe side. Like a lot of Southern gals, there were several years where I irresponsibly shunned sunscreen in favor of slathering myself in baby oil and frying like a little piece of bacon. Sure, a tan minimizes cellulite – but I’d rather be alive with cellulite than dying of skin cancer. My late friend Andy Caress (a college athlete and avid outdoors enthusiast) fought a valiant battle against skin cancer and sadly passed away about two years ago, and knowing someone – someone my age, someone I went to college with and saw almost every day on campus – really pushed the important of sunscreen home for me. I will be coating myself, my husband, and my children in sunscreen for as long as my fingers work, and I’ll do it in Andy’s honor.

Anyhow on to better topics!

I’ve gotten some feedback from a variety of people on my previous blog, the Theory of a Deadman hazing over their woman-hating song. I’m going to say the feedback has been almost 100% positive and makes me feel like most people – thankfully – do not share TOADM’s penchant for objectifying women! That said, I really hope people know that my “vent sessions” are about 40% joking, 60% serious. I use a lot of hyperbole and a lot of sarcasm, and I hope that always comes out in my writing – but if it doesn’t, and something I say seems “off” to you, please tell me! My point in a lot of these blogs is to, well, make my point – but also to elicit some laughter and make light of the nastier things in the world. I just don’t want to give the impression that if you do something that I don’t like or agree with, you’re immediately going to have a mean blog written about you, because I’d never do that. Well, that is, unless you were a politician or a band or something like that. They’re just such easy targets! *wink*

Anyhow, Turkey Day is nigh, and my procrastination is not waning one bit in the face of this national holiday. I have yet to make the macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes (did I mention my family likes carbs?), glaze for my already finished dark chocolate bundt cake (a few crumbs fell off and I ate them and yes, this cake is amaaaaaaazing), and a green pea dish with bacon and some other stuff. So it’s going to be a busy day. To top that off, there is a pair of boots at Target that I have a $5 off coupon for and really, really might be going to get.

And to top it off, the back glass of the car just got busted out by a falling tree limb. Like, literally 20 minutes ago. *sigh* Gonna be a busy one.

On the warpath again: Reasons why TOADM’s moms did a really bad job.

If you have Charter or U-Verse or anything like that, you probably are familiar with the “Music Choice” channels. Most of our friends know that we’re pretty big rock/metal fans, though I’ll admit to playing the “Jazz” and “Light Classical” segments just as much, if not more often, than I blare Nine Inch Nails or Five Fingered Death Punch. But this morning, just as we were getting the kiddo bundled up for a frigid run, we heard this fabulous new ditty on the rock channel: “B**** Came Back,” by Theory of a Deadman (hereafter indicated as TOADM). Now, I don’t know if you’re familiar at all with punchline intense talent that is TOADM, but just so you can get the full picture of this brilliant lyrical creation, here’s how it goes:

The —– came back the very next day
Oh, the —– came back, I thought she was a goner
But, the —– came back, she couldn’t stay away
Don’t you know the —– came back?

I like her so much better when she’s down on her knees
Cause when she’s in my face that’s when I’m starting to see
That all my friends will laugh at thinking that we’d be wrong
Well she’s so f—–‘ stupid that she’s singing along

The trouble with girls is they’re all the same
Forget the diamonds and pearls they just want a ring
Before you know it you’re like a dog on a leash
Well you can try and change the world but you won’t change me

The —– came back the very next day
Oh, the —– came back, I thought she was a goner
But, the ——came back, she couldn’t stay away
Don’t you know the —– came back?

There she goes again just always breaking my balls
No matter what I do somehow it’s always my fault
She says I must be cheating cause I turned off my phone
But that’s the only frickin’ way she’ll leave me alone

The trouble with girls is is never enough
They love to complain and they never shut up
They like to tell you the way it ought to be
Go on and tell the world but just don’t tell me

The —– came back the very next day
Oh, the —– came back, I thought she was a goner
But, the —– came back, she couldn’t stay away
Don’t you know the —– came back?

Really, this is brilliant stuff. What an effective cover-up for such clear ineptitude at…well, life. You see, there’s this entire segment of the current generation of men now who have apparently stopped maturing at the age of about 13 or 14 – and unfortunately, friends, TOADM is the kind of thing that happens. I think the emotional/intellectual self-conversation would have to go something like this:

“Self, what shall I do with my life? Let’s see…I barely scored a 620 on the SAT (spelled my name wrong…again!), and I’ve flunked half the coursework to get an interdisciplinary studies “certificate” at the local adult night school. Mom and dad are going to kick me out if I don’t get a job by the time I’m 27! What’s a loser like me to do? Oh, I know! I’ll start a band with my other shiftless buddies and write insipid songs about how women are the source of ALL my problems (not the fact that I’m a waste of cells, space, resources, and oxygen!)! Yeah! Girls suck!”

So you end up with junk like this, a misogynistic anthem of woman hatred, penned by guys who have no real talent other than being able to convert oxygen to carbon dioxide while hold a guitar. Or a microphone. Or a tune. Revolutionary stuff, folks. I’m also going to assume, from the sounds of it, that these halfwits have really poor taste in women. Just an inkling, not sure where I picked it up (could’ve also been a deduction from all their other gems, like “Low Life” or “Bad Girlfriend”). The sad part is that, maybe circa 2004 or 2005, these guys didn’t actually sound like the poor man’s version of Nickelback that they are today (didn’t know there could be such a thing, did you?). In fact, I *might* have had one or two of their songs on my MP3 player back in junior year. That said, TOADM’s lead singer still sounded exactly like Chad Kroeger, which is sad, because the poor d-bag actually looks more like a cross between Elvis and Justin Bieber. It’s a funny thing to behold.

You know, hearing stuff like this makes me really appreciate my husband more than I usually do (which is to say, a lot – he’s amazing). My husband was raised by a ball-busting, no-crap-taking, call-it-like-she-sees-it sort of woman. She has a Jamie Lee Curtis haircut, and is two inches taller than you. Jonathan’s dad was no sissy when he picked her – he knew there’d be arguments that she’d win, and he knew she would knock him into next week if he ever tried to pull a Chris Brown/Rihanna on her (not that he’d ever dream of it – turns out, his mother raised him better than that, too).

I was raised by a similar pair of bad asses. My mom can run with the big dogs – she wouldn’t have snagged my dad if she was some meek, lowly woman. This probably accounts for why she and I really butted heads in my teens and early 20s – because we were cut from the same cloth, and people who are similar often have the hardest time accepting one another. Something about looking in the mirror and seeing our own flaws doesn’t always set well with us.

In the mean time, here I am married to basically the only guy who could ever accept me. I know I’m a bitter pill, people. You have to know that was one of my top 5 goals in life, to be the kind of woman that my husband had to have a set in order to deal with. I think that makes me choosy, not difficult! 😉 And whilst my husband’s male coworkers compete over who is the most whipped of them all, I have to chuckle to myself, “Really?” Let’s see, one of ya looks like Paul Giamatti (that’s not a compliment) and swears he’ll “Never give in and get married,” while the other one spends all his time paying to put up his wife’s entire extended family for months at a time. Please, compete on. What. The. Crap. Jonathan says the conversations make for a good laugh, because the whole time he’s thinking “Wow. My wife is pretty cool.”

That, by the way, was an actual quote from Wilhoit. You can ask him.

But my point is this: Real men don’t gun for an easy catch, a quiet girl who will just cook and have babies and not argue about anything. Real men seek out women with strength, spirit, soul – women who will tell them when they’re wrong, and love them regardless. Women who will seek to edify them, but won’t shrink from putting their foot down when the time comes. Real men simply do not seek out what amounts to a slightly more animated version of a blow-up doll with vital stats. They want someone with a little bite, a little life in them. Someone who isn’t so washed of all their spirit that they just sit there like some 1950s douche advertisement heroine.

At least, that’s how I was raised. And luckily, that’s how my husband was raised. And it’s a pretty safe bet that our children will be raised that way.

Which is how I know something is amiss with anyone who thinks that this approach to the male-female relationship is normal or healthy in any way whatsoever. A healthy relationship is a lot like a business partnership in that you don’t want to be in a partnership with someone who is financially weaker or less apt for leadership than you are. If anything, you want to be in a partnership with someone who is on similarly solid or perhaps even stronger ground. You go into life together, you make these decisions together, and you experience all the consequences and results of this partnership together.

These guys from TOADM actually make me think of a couple of guys I used to know back in college who often argued in favor of the superiority of men. I remember one encounter with one of them where he physically got in my face for making a decision at work about ____ (insert issue where he was obviously more qualified by virtue of having a “dangly”). He couldn’t believe it when I threw a full Nalgene bottle at his head and told him what he could do with it (and if you’re thinking “She did that to me once,” don’t get all excited. It’s happened more than once. You are not special.). I never claimed to be “fair and balanced,” people. And besides, that was, like, EONS ago. Clearly, I’d never do something like that now…*wink*.

There were more of those types. One is still alone. The other guy is, far as I know, still alone. And then one of them is in jail. Oh, and alone.

And I think that pretty much says it all. These guys are what is ruining the world – little boys stomping around in big boy boots and yelling. Those are the guys. They’re the guys that raise girls with daddy issues. These are the guys who raise little boys who grow up to beat their wives. These are the guys who think “No” actually means “Yes,” and that “she was asking for it” if she’s wearing anything less than a turtleneck. These are the guys who helped plunge our economy into the crapper because they lack any semblance of personal responsibility or fiscal/common sense. These are the guys who whine to their buddies about how their wives “make them babysit,” i.e. take care of their spawn on occasion. For the love of all that’s holy, you want me to commit to not sleeping with my secretary, AND you want me to actually fulfill some semblance of fatherly obligations? What are you woman, a crazy person?!

To put it bluntly: These are little boys, masquerading around in their daddies’ big boys undies and yelling “Girls are stupid! Throw rocks at them!” And thankfully, it looks like those dimwits are getting less and less chances to procreate (I’m telling you folks, there IS a God). Though I have to say, I’ve inadvertently had to sit through their opening act for another band (it wasn’t my favorite show ever, let’s just say), and I’m kind of disturbed at the number of teenage chicklets who wear very little, go stand in the pit, and then remove what little they have on in order to “offer” themselves to these little boy. Girls, you’re not helping, and you’re certainly not winning any respect.

So clearly I’m exactly the type of chick they’re harping on, which is why I’m so excited for this opportunity!!

I’m just going to continue to do the things that tick guys like these off and turn my husband on (because, it turns out, he’s not dead inside like the dudes from TOADM). You know how I’m going to do it? By doing exactly what they hate. You know – breathing, reading things (and probably at a much higher grade level than them), having B cup boobies, etc. I’m going to continue wearing garments that fall in that grey area of normalcy located somewhere between a burka and a plastic dress with stripper shoes. I’m going to continue voting, saying whatever pops into my crazy little head, and occasionally telling my husband that I don’t feel like cooking (though not very often…I really like cooking). And if you think I’m a nasty piece of work, just wait until you meet my future hypothetical daughter. Version 2.0 is really going to be something. 😉


Tonight was going well. I haven’t blogged in a week and a half or more, but that’s because there’s been a lot of different stuff going on. The master bathroom went kaput (small pipe = BIG leak), so there’s been that to take care of. Russ’s molars are coming in, which is not fun, but we’re getting through it alright. We’re looking towards Thanksgiving and then a long spurt of travel for Jonathan (err…not really looking “forward” to that). Then of course there’s Christmas and a New Years trip to Mississippi to see my nephew get married (it feels crazy to say that – I remember when he was born).

But I had one of those moments a few minutes ago where something happened that completely reduced my faith in humanity, and I became so frustrated and flat-out angry about it that I felt compelled to get the poison out of me somehow. So here I am. All political crap and this entire idiotic thing aside, what upset me here was the last, oh, about 15 seconds of this video (so you can skip all the stupidity if you like). Take a look at this:

Is that really an element of what we consider “comedic” these days? Dead children on a playground? I get the larger political statement Daniel Tosh is trying to make here, but I guess the image of a mother holding a dead child after a playground shooting just affects me on a cellular level. I can’t shake the (literal) feeling of nausea is gives me. You know, Tosh is one of those people I really kind of hate to be around – you know, the ones that make fun of things by saying really terrible, offensive things as a form of satire of other really terrible, offensive people. Because you know…they’re totally not being offensive by using that same line of “humor.” Ugh. It’s exhausting to be around people like that. I know those morons think that this somehow puts their brand of comedy a step above all of us plebian fools who appreciate “dated” concepts like keeping some things in life a little big sacred. But I guess if that makes me an idiot, it’s a label I will gladly accept. I know it’s not true. The sight of a dead child is never funny. It is not fodder for amusement. It is not in any way acceptable.

If this is what people really find to be funny these days – again, I’m talking here only about the last 10-15 seconds of that clip, and that horrible image that made me literally recoil in disgust – then I am at a loss. And we are on our way down as a species.

There really should be some things in life that are off limits, folks.

Body Inspiration & Pinterest

So, yeah, if you’re tracking, this is the second blog post that has been inspired by something on Pinterest, but bear with me: I’m a visual person, but I try not to forget the substance found within an image, or behind it, or whatever. And some modes of “inspiration” can be damaging if you’re not careful. You get what my drift, right? Moving on.

So! I get that a lot of us ladies use it for inspiration in any number of realms – decorating, cooking, style/fashion, etc. But a lot of us use it to get workout ideas, or just to remind ourselves why we trudge to the gym, run, etc. And let me be clear here: I’m not ranting because I’m mad about something, I’m just saying something emphatically and with deep conviction because I need for people I care about to hear this. Especially my teenage nieces, who I pray for daily because they just deserve the best things in this world, and oh my GOD, this is a tough, mean, yucky world with crappy people and crappy standards in it. And I wish I could protect them from it. Them, and all the little girls I see at church or Publix or the gym who don’t know what’s out there to trip them up in this world. They deserve to be told how beautiful they are, and how amazing they are, and that it won’t matter if they look like models or fatties or something in between, because they are so much more than that. So much more.

When it comes to working out, here’s why I do what I do. And I’m not trying to judge anyone based simply upon body size, because that’s not cool. Women range naturally across all sizes. I truly do believe that women could all eat the same things and do the same things and have completely different bodies – all beautiful in their own way, all distinctive and unusual and mysterious in their formation. Really, C.S. Lewis nailed it when he said this:

You do not have a soul.
You are a soul.
You have a body.

I gotta ask this, about bodies: What the hell does it matter? I don’t care if my body is a size 4 or a size 14, anymore. That used to matter to me, and it was sad that it did. As long as I’m healthy, who the hell cares? You know what I want from my body? I don’t want it to get cancer – and that’s something I know is beyond the control of me or my body, which is scary to me. I don’t want my body to fall apart from something like arthritis, or for my heart to explode in my chest because I smoked my entire life (I don’t smoke, I’m just using hypotheticals here) or ate bacon at every meal (though, bacon at every meal sounds like a fun process). I mean, really, I enjoy life and I have learned that I will never look back when I’m on my death bed and wish I’d counted more calories or done a few more lunges. I just want to keep my body healthy because it is a vessel, a vehicle, with which my soul glances throughout this world and makes tangible connections to those my soul holds closest. Without this body, my soul is an invisible force in an invisible world which I don’t have the privilege of knowing much about. And yes, one day I’ll die. And this thing will be dust. So I don’t care if it has cellulite. Or if the butt on it is a little rounder and bigger than perhaps some people would like. It’s like worrying about how that car you drove off the lot looks – what is it? A mode of transportation? A stylized vessel to carry you from one place to another? The most I’d worry about purchasing a car is if the thing was safe (Hello, Pinto). I’m not a Ford. Or a Chevy. I’m a person, and frankly, I’m the happiest I’ve ever been with my body, because it has recently given me such a beautiful gift: my son.

I just want to put this out there: I’m 10 pounds below what I weighed when I got pregnant with Russ. And honestly, it’s been a pain in the butt, because I’ve had to go shopping for clothes that aren’t so enormous on me. I would’ve been just as happy to be my 10-pounds-heavier self and not have had to go shopping. Honest to God. I like where I am. I like where I was. But you know what? I really, really loved my 196-pounds, 39-weeks-pregnant body. If there’s a body of mine that I miss, it’s that one. The whole thing was pretty amazing. I look forward to putting away these “skinny jeans” in the future and going back to being that, because that was something awesome.

You do not have a soul.
You are a soul.
You have a body.
I thank God for that.