Going Mental

Sometimes we become experts in subject matter in which we never wished to be associated.

Sexual Assault Center of Nashville

For me, the aftermath of Rapegate is one that I will grapple with daily for the rest of my life.

Not necessarily in re-living the rape itself but the triggers, the daily reminders due to dealing with PTSD, chronic fatigue, severe stress, anxiety, nerves, handfuls of pills that I now take that have side effects of brain fog (which coupled with blonde brain is a triple shit show), dizziness (like I needed any more help being a fucking klutz), and weight gain (oh the welcomed happiness of gaining 40 lbs – mostly in my belly because of cortisol levels being out-of-whack) and therapy.

That is a perk of Rapegate that will surely have me in weekly sessions forever.

My Therapy Thursday saving grace.

There’s stigma in being a victim of rape – especially within victims themselves. The embarrassment, shame, feeling dirty, like somehow it’s your fault.

Did I deserve it? Why did I “allow” it to happen? It’s all my fault, right?

The questions from others. What were you wearing? Had you been drinking? Why didn’t you scream? And so on, don’t help even though they may come from well-meaning places. The questions above were all asked of me by the Nashville Sex Crimes Detective after my body was violated by a man’s dick. You know, what if a Kim Kardashian sized diamond ring (one can wish) had been stolen off of my finger? Would any of those questions suffice in an investigation? Hell no.

Take my coffee mug advice.

But then here we are. I am a walking, talking, rape stereotype. I wasn’t believed by those closest to the case. My detective said it was a he said/she said since the Shane the Rapist said it was consensual sex and his girlfriend of five weeks – my now ex-best friend, backed his play.

That’s a super neat feeling of betrayal beyond words.

In between being raped and the year and a half it took to close the case, where Shane the Rapist walks freely out and about, it would be insane not to think someone might go insane.

And, I have absolutely, 100% felt the self wrath, the aftermath, the internal tornado, the tsunami of emotions that surge whenever the fuck they feel like it and eruption of tears, hotly flowing down my face, onto my chin, into my shirt (accompanied with a river of snot and lemme tell ya, it’s a doozie of a look).

I’m known for being a beautiful bawler.

And killing boxes of tissues in one cryfest.

It’s improbable that someone can experience any kind of trauma or loss (death, divorce, career, disease, disorder, assault, etc) without consequence to them (I had the pleasure of experiencing all of the above examples in the two years since rape – so yeah, I’m a tad done with being overburdened by grief and loss).

The best face I can muster some days.

For me, this is where my once stable strength of fuck off confidence got lost in the swirl of circling the drain.

The emotional, mental, and physical tolls sometime feel beyond debilitating. Combine that with life – which most certainly goes on around you – and it can make the most mundane tasks like making your bed seem like winning an Olympic gold medal if you ever get around to completing the job.

I made my bed. Where’s my accolades?

And the usual worries of life are still abound while grappling with sometimes crippling days. Money worries. Hoping your car doesn’t crap out on your worries. Can my cell phone hang on for another year? Are my friends and family OK? Am I paying enough attention to them? Do they think I’m ignoring them? See how this shit can snowball?

Avalanche

Now more than ever, I feel it’s important to speak up if you can about what can sometimes seem like taboo subjects. I was raped. Think that’s fun topic to bring up to new people? “Oh hi, my name is Captain, I’ll have a Skinny Pirate please, I was raped, how are you?” Of course this doesn’t come up immediately but still, I talk about Rapegate, and if we’re gonna be friends, it’s gonna come out.

Did I scare you off?

Taboo also is this fucking stigma that comes along with mental illnesses. I have PTSD (among a myriad of other lovely conditions). When I was looking for a new job after Rapegate, I had to put down on applications whether or not I had PTSD. Now it’s considered a disability. So, OK it’s a disability. I’m dealing with it the best that I can but do I need to reveal that to a potential employer? Yes, I have had panic attacks silently at work in bathroom stalls and in my car but I’m still showing up and doing my job (although my panic attacks always end with me throwing up, so that’s fun to do out of my car window while attempting not to get vomit on my work attire).

Thankfully the situation of Louis acting as my vomit trashcan has not yet taken place.

And some days are dark. Like calm before storm, clouds rolling in, so quiet it may just drive you mad blackout dark. I think about the recent passing of celebrities Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain, both of whom reportedly took their own lives within two days of one another. Both had loved ones, both were celebrated among their professional communities, both had achieved success in different fashions and both had children. So much to leave behind.

But can you even imagine the pain they must have been in to think that their only way out was to “unburden” those around them? That’s really scary to me. Because I often feel like a burden to my family and close friends. Over the past five years, I’ve experienced loss and grief and change beyond my imagination and while I am learning to cope in therapy, I still feel like I’m so needy. “Can I borrow $20 until payday (while swallowing pride for 1,976,000 time)? I can’t go out because I am on a spending freeze (you know those handfuls of pills and doctor follow-ups aren’t free. I’m beyond lucky to have health insurance with co-pays). I just had a panic attack, so I’m going to have to miss your birthday celebration. I am going to stay in because I can’t fathom the thought of getting out of bed.” Mostly, I keep these emotions to myself but I still feel like one motherfucker of a burden.

I. just. can’t.

It’s easy for people to say that suicide is selfish. I can see why one would say that but if you haven’t ever grappled with your own dark demons that sometimes you push deep down inside of you, or think they’re gone, only to have them pop up and taunt you over and over and over again – it’s not easy. I’ve never experienced substance abuse but I can easily see how that would have an even bigger impact on one’s state-of-mind. Mental issues are sometimes a lonely, isolating experience of despair.

How others see me.                                           How I feel inside.

My darkest times since Rapegate (and everything else that has occurred in between), have never eluded me to think about ending my life. However, have I been in a place where I wished my eyes wouldn’t open in the morning because it seemed easier than fighting the anguish of deep depression? Yep. Has my chest been so heavy that I thought my heart was going to burst out of it Indiana Jones style because it could bear no more loss or grief, physically hurting? Fuck yes. Do I hit my snooze button 3,719,003 times in the morning (even though I have been up for three hours already) because the thought of putting makeup on and gussying up for work and putting on a “happy” face seems like too much to bear. Damn skippy.

Hi there. I’m getting pretty fucking sick of these feelings popping up whenever they fucking feel like it. Byeee.

That all being said, it’s not uncommon for someone to have these types of thoughts once or more in their lifetime. Some people do shoot sunshine out of their assholes (fuck, until three years ago, I was one of them) but more often than not, it’s a combination of rain, sun, sleet and hail as we trudge through life. On top of all this, I’ve constantly seen the suicide hotline phone number everywhere. You know that is fucking great, but you know what’s hard? Reaching out when you need help. And let me say this – if you offer to help someone in any way and they reach out, for the love of God, do NOT shut them down. It’s already exceedingly hard to admit you need help.

So if you see someone, know someone, sense something’s off and can have a conversation or need advice, you, too can call this hotline for another person. I’ve done it.

You know what you can also do? Tend to them the best way you know how – if they are typically social, try to get them out of the house. If they aren’t up to it, stay in and binge watch some TV. Or go on a walk. Just don’t ignore them. Don’t give up on them. Don’t stop inviting them places because they always say no. Be persistant.

You can also help by researching options with the Suicide Prevention Lifeline. I have friends who would greatly benefit from therapy but haven’t been able to find the correct place. I’ve called this number before, searching for answers when someone was in need. In the research I have done around Nashville, there are places that offer sliding scaled payments for those who don’t have insurance, or whose insurance doesn’t cover mental health (so fucked up). However, like in many other situations, the persons who need the help must be willing to go for themselves, not for anyone else. So if they refuse or keep handing you excuses, just do your best to listen.

My mental journey in the aftermath of Rapegate has been eye-opening. I’m so self deprecating to the point of starring in my own version of Mean Girls in my head some days.

Regina George, get the fuck outta my head.

However, I luckily have a solid circle of support. A very large sparkly army that isn’t confined to face-to-face relationships. My circle has expanded as I’ve talked about my struggles. The support system I have now extends from Nashville, to Iowa, to California, to England, to Italy, to Australia…and more. The “checking on you” voicemails, direct messages through social media, “thinking of you texts” to words of encouragement in my comment section, random gifts showing up in my mailbox, snail mailed letters, a cashier’s check just because…Every word, every action, matters.

This is what you do for me.

Please remember that as you move forward with your days. Those struggling the most are sometimes people who you’d least expect. One smile can go miles – and it’s a universal language (as fucking cheesy as that sounds). A small compliment can turn a day around. An out of the blue “how are you” text can save a major cry session. Check on each other. Love on each other. Hug on each other.

Unless of course it’s the person who raped you, in which he’ll get a throat punch at the very least. See, I’m still a bad ass motherfucker when I wanna be.

Obviously.

Be fucking kind.

CBXB

CBXB!

 

Summer Snaps

While it seemed the month of January lasted 100 days earlier this year, how in the fuck is it now the middle of June? Bananas.

I’ve taken a slide down the regression train the last two months in regard to Rapegate and its aftermath full of PTSD and what not but – BUT with the help of my family, friends and fur balls, my wheels are still on the track, although daily WD40 is required at this point. Here’s what kept me moving and grooving…

Sometimes all you need are ladies who help keep your crown held high. And wine. Lots and lots of wine.

A night in with laughs, snacks and shenanigans.

I decided to get CPR certified, so maybe when I’m having my own panic attacks I can calm myself the fuck down (just kidding…only chewing on Xanax and getting on all fours does the trick for me). When we were practicing chest compressions on our dummies, the instructor asked who I was mad at…angry much? Yes, I believe I will be taking up kick boxing or kung fu in the near future.

It was the shit watching Nashville’s NHL hockey team, the Predators make their second appearance in the Stanley Cup playoffs, complete with watch parties.

Fang Fingers!

While they didn’t make it to the end, it was a season full of fun with reasons to partake in cocktails whether they won or lost.

Reasons for seasons.

There’s always reminders that I need to stop and smell the roses lilacs, compliments of my Princess B. She knows what’s up.

She reminds me that I always have time to stop and smell the wine.

Not drinking alone if your cats are home.

Or your chug.

Summer sports are in full swing and I think I have a sports star in the making with Prince B.

Sports stud on the rise.

I don’t know if Prince B could do it without the support from his sister, who clearly only comes to his games to watch.

Cheerleading at its finest.

You wanna know what else is a ‘holy fuck?!’ moment? My Iowa twins graduated Pre-K. We have official kindergarteners on ours hands people.

First and last day pics.

As soon as the summer vacation commenced, these two were on it full speed ahead.

Vacay the right way.

Oh and my tender-hearted nephew is about to melt your heart. Even if its dead and cold. He recently shaved his head because he wanted matching ‘dos with his dad.

Like father, like son.

In other happy news, my dophew, Spike, celebrated his third trip around the sun.

Spike with his fave kind of bone.

And in possibly the best news yet, the mini manse’s pool opened.

Summer hydration IV.

Rasta and I celebrated our one year anniversary – we met at the pool last year. Awe.

Alcohol and Bad Decisions.

More happiness with my fabulous stylist who not only is one of my besties but makes me laugh AND makes my hair dreams come true.

He does the hair. I provide the accessories.

 

The pink glitter cup he gifted me left me with surprises in my pie hole.

Sequin tooth in place. Does this give me street cred?

Bird Lady and I found a new bar, Firefly Bar and Grille, where I want to move in as they have their Christmas lights up all year long inside. Better yet, when one strand burns out, they leave it up and just put new ones over the old strand. Be still my beating heart.

Firefly and feeling fine.

When my gal pal from college came in, we shut that damn bar down while showing off our jazz hands we perfected in our collegiate show choir. Yep. We were cool like that.

Jazz hands still on point.

There have been many a Friday night where I want to stay in and get wild with organization. But this keeps happening…

So I catch up on how to murder people without getting caught. Don’t piss me off.

I’m also happy to report that Nashville is finally joining the 1980s and offering wine on Sundays now. We still can’t purchase liquor but I’ll settle for Jesus juice.

Miracles do come true.

Speaking of miracles, my loudmouth was allowed on a golf course to play a bit of put-put (or as real golfers call it, golf) while also delivering snacks and booze. All for a fabulous cause – Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. Over $300,000 was raised for the kids.

Koozies make the best earrings.

When they told me to stock up the cart with snacks, I pretended I was on Supermarket Sweep and took just about everything in sight.

Griswolds of the golf course.

Roaming around on the golf course are sheep and being the animal lover I am, I wanted to take one home. But I settled for a photo instead, where they look like white blobs behind a big slob.

The famous sheep with a gigantic asshat.

In other famous news, Princess B got all dolled up for her second recital. And while I am very proud of her, I am also beyond jealous of her costume and am considering an extreme diet so I can squeeze my ample rear end into it.

Dancing Queen

Since she supported her brother in baseball, it was only fair he happily did the same…complete with the proper dance picture pose.

Hands on hips.

I used to be an avid jogger. My bed seems so much better these days, yet, First Mate got me out of my shell and coaxed me into participating in a Coconut RAD (Random Ass Distance) Run. Rasta was so moved, she made us a support poster.

The only way I will run anymore is if I can also hold booze.

One size fits “most”…uh, yeah, right.

While we were far from first place, we were also far from last. And, we couldn’t say no to rum in our coconuts.

Middle of the pack finishers!

No better way to cool off than a party day with Dada CBXB.

Race day cool down.

Suns Out, Buns Out.

I took one for the team, rounding up my dad’s ginormous sandals when it was time to leave.

You all know how much I love my fur balls and one in particular is having some issues. Precious the chug passed out yesterday on the way out for a walk. She’s been to the vet and had tests done, so please send your good juju her way.

Hopeful to get some pep back in her pitiful step.

That, my friends is a long winded catch up. The many reasons I have to smile has everything to do with you.

Thank you.

XOXO

CBXB

CBXB!

 

 

The Pussy Posse

While we all know I’m batshit crazy over cats (and animals in general), I have yet to really introduce my latest brood in proper fashion.

The bitchy love of my life, Teddy Bear, died suddenly last August. I’ve wanted to write about it so many times but the hole his departure left in my heart literally feels like molten lava spilling into my body when I try. Then the volcano eruption of uncontrollable scalding tears rush down my cheeks, so it’s best I save his obituary for another day. Or year. Or century.

My ride or die.

Yes, I’m talking about a cat. Many days and nights I long to be over the Rainbow Bridge with him. He was the last link I had to my previous life and endured the hardships into the one I now lead. But as we all know, the world keeps turning and so, now, I run a fucking zoo.

After Rapegate occurred, Ted kept vigil by being my constant companion, not leaving my side unless he was stuffing his pie hole.

Literally would not leave me.

When my mom came to stay with me, she thought it’d be a good idea for Bear and me to have another furry friend around. Now, I already have joint custody of Precious the Chug but Mama CBXB thought a kitten for Valentine’s Day would be the best gift in 2016.

Um….do we have a say?

We went to see my crazy cat lady gal pal, Penny, who runs Sweet Faces Cat and Kitten Rescue (in which I am happy to be the poster child since I have adopted six animals over two years from her – yes you read that right).  Typically, I adopt adult cats, who stand a lesser chance of getting permanent homes as they grow older. But mom thought a baby would be good cuddle therapy.

Crazy Cat Lady 1 and Crazy Cat Lady 2.

Once the cage of kittens opened, the first one I picked up was named Elsa and the decision was immediately and easily done. My Iowa twins love the movie Frozen (what fucking kid doesn’t), so since I grabbed the princess from the movie, it was fate in my eyes.

Princess kitty cat.

Deal sealed.

Then, I stood up and locked eyes with this majestic beauty.

Hello Gorgeous.

Deal not done.

I mistakenly asked to hold her and as soon as I put my face in the kennel, she rubbed her noggin against mine, purring loudly.

Fuck me.

Then Penny pointed out her enormous brother in the back of the cage I never noticed because he didn’t move a muscle from the ball in which he was curled. She explained that they were brother and sister about three years old, surrendered by their owner. The big brother wasn’t coping well in foster care.

Double fuck me.

Well, really triple fuck me.

Who was I to split up a pair of siblings? The black beauty and myself already bonded in .00004 seconds. And her brother was so shy and sad that I was warned I may never see him come out from behind the dryer or under the bed. So yes, I lost my goddamned mind that Saturday and walked out with not one, not two but three motherfucking pussies.

An instant mom to triplets.

Now, on a side note, the always charming actress Drew Barrymore adopted three cats at once and made national headlines for her big heart.

I, on the other hand received sweet messages of support like…

And love notes left on my car…

On the way home from Pet Smart, not a fucking peep was uttered. As soon as I got to the mini manse, the boxes were opened and from that moment on, it was harmonious until Tedstar died a year and a half later.

Love, love, love, love.

RIP Baby Bear.

Penny reached out when she heard the news about Ted and offered my pick of the litter (pun so intended), when I was ready. I knew I wanted another Russian Blue mix and about a month later, Penny sent word that a handsome, shy gent was at Pet Smart. When I raced arrived to check him out, there was a sticky note on his kennel door that read, “needs extra TLC.”

Sweet baby is on the right, afraid to come out.

Penny had instructed me to pet him on his head – hard – and as soon as I did, he cautiously came to me. When I lifted him out of the cage, he put both of his paws around my neck. You know what the fuck happened next.

Crazy cat lady shopping spree with an actual cat in the carrier!

Nothing strange here.

I texted Penny his photo on the way to his new home after the impromptu shopping spree at Pet Smart.

Mine. ALL MINE.

Obvies Fabio was meant to be mine and this was how he spent his first night in the mini manse.

Head rubbin’ on the bed.

So, in no particular favor order, I’m thrilled to introduce The Pussy Posse to you…age before beauty.

Precious the Chug

Age 12. Acts like a puppy. Looks like an Ewok.

Also known as Preshy, Presh, P, Pweshy (as my Iowa twins call her).

Presh is pretty much my sidekick in everything that I do. Without her emotional support after Rapegate and Ted’s passing and everythingfuckingthingelseinbetween…I’m not sure the state I’d be in.

We garden together.

We outfit shop together. DUH.

We drink together. Also DUH.

We take work meetings together.

We get groomed together.

And when I can, I like to match her to my hair.

She loves it. Obvies.

Rocky the Gentle Giant

Age 5. Also known as Bigs, Rocco.

Thinks he’s the size of a mouse.

Could teach pussy yoga.

Remember how he was sad and unable to even look at a potential owner until I got my grubby paws on him? He’s now happily the king of the mini manse.

Ruby Sue the Menace

Age 5. Also known as Thundercunt, Thundy, TC.

Wondering how she earned the endearing moniker of Thundercunt? I found her hanging on the blinds after she’d taken down the curtains.

Greetings of salutation after work one day.

The usual set up of the area.

Waiting on accolades as I tried to work around her mess to hang everything back up.

No shame in her game.

She has an obvious infatuation with curtains, as one night around 2 am this happened…

The actual fuck.

As I bolted out of bed, thinking I was going to end up on Forensic Files, I followed the evidence and concluded that in fact, it was TC. Rocky tried to help me hang the curtain back up but I said to hell with it and showered in my other bathroom the next few days.

Ruby Sue also apparently hates her life of rags to riches and walks the plank on my second level balcony every chance she gets. And she’s clumsy as fuck. So fate will be fate – and she’d land on all fours. C’mon, she’s a cat.

Fabio the Fuck Face

Age 3. Also known as Fabies, Faabs (pronounced Fahbs), Fartio and Fabio Le Pew.

This gorgeous guy farts and darts when he gets nervous. He has zero apprehension prancing around the mini manse and head butts like it’s his paying gig. He also has the regal look of daring you to a death match but couldn’t be more of a sweetheart, hence the nickname Fuck Face.

And his tail…oh that’s his best accessory.

Fabio Le Pew.

Princess Elsa Pants of Resting Bitch Face

Age 2. Also known as Pants, Stank Face and Smalls.

Remember how my mom thought a kitten to cuddle would be the best therapy for me? I’ve gotten my hands on this little shit for a good 29 minutes in the last two years I have had her.

But she loves her siblings and that’s all that really matters (except really, her world should revolve around me – there I said it).

She also loves sparkly accessories.

While I sound like a walking, talking billboard of how to remain single for the rest of one’s life, I don’t give a fuck (I also love candles and reading books – DREAM GIRL).

Just a natural weekend run for cat shit.

Except I do keep my dumpster wedding dress and veil in my car just in case I run into Mr. Right getting an equally large cat tree one day.

Oh hi there. You love cats, too?

There’s really nothing like coming home, being greeted by my brood with figure eights performed between my calves, head butts, tail wags and a game of tag with Stank Face. It’s also fabulous to pour supper in their margarita glasses (food, mind you), pour supper into my wine glass and settle in for an evening of furry snuggles.

So glad they’re mine.

I do expect you regular readers to memorize all names for the entire Pussy Posse, with nicknames included if you want to be true super fans. And if that’s too hard, I will let you buy me a Skinny Pirate next time we run into each other and I quiz you.

Cheers!

CBXB!

The Big Apple Will Never Be the Same

As many of you well know, my beloved Aunt Crazy Pants passed away after a valiant fight against terminal lung cancer (after never smoking a goddamn cigarette in her life).

Crazy and Aunt Crazy Pants.

By the time cancer was found through an unrelated surgery, it had already spread everywhere but her brain and she was given six months to a year to live in June of 2016. Well, being a feisty little bitch, she survived with cancer 370 days.

Beat cancer for five extra days. Suck it.

While it’s important to remember that when someone may no longer be among us on earth, our relationship with them can still exist, it’s also important to remember the quality of life given during an especially grueling battle with cancer. ACP’s youngest son R. Nasty made sacrifices I can’t say many young adults his age – let alone any adult – would do to care for his dying mother. I mean before being diagnosed with cancer, she was already the most dramatic woman on the planet (like bitching about “having” to pack to go to Hawaii – or any other fabulous destination…yeah, poor thing), so you can imagine the sheer joy the magnification of her theatrics became.

Flair for fun dramatics.

R. Nasty moved in with his mom (all young men’s dream come true) being closest in proximity and able to make accommodations to do so, while his other brothers and extended family lived further away.

All other Bros and Hos live far away.

He answered every time she hollered with a patient, “yes Mother,” sauntered into her room after every bell ring (a sound that will surely haunt him for the rest of his days), removed an ice cube each time he accidentally put four instead of three into her water and endless other duties that come along with caring for a cancer patient.

The true meaning of ‘got your back’.

My point is, this dude is a fucking saint. Throughout all the treatment routines, doctor’s appointments, therapy, surgeries, etc, ACP’s absolute favorite time was watching The Late Show with Stephen Colbert with R. Nasty every weeknight. Even if she dozed off in the evening as she got more cancer riddled, she wanted to be woken up to watch Stephen Colbert with her son.

Wake me up before you go go!

In the evening on August 31, 2017 my feisty aunt was taken from home hospice to the hospital. That night, as the end was drawing near, the room full of family was clearing out and R. Nasty leaned in and said, “We’re going to watch Stephen Colbert one more time, Mom.” And that they did. She died at 3am on Friday, September 1st, 2017.

While we’ve partied in every way possible in honor of Aunt Crazy Pants’ love of life, I’d like to acknowledge the sacrifices her son made so selflessly. When asked about it he always says (and still does), “it’s my honor to take care of my mother.”

So how can you show a small token of appreciation in return to a son who lost a friend, a mother and a fucking funny lady all rolled into one? Sister CBXB came up with a great idea, reached out to me to execute (why do I have to do all the work?) and with the help of some letter writing, reaching out to every.single.contact I have and making them reach out to every.single.contact they have, magic happened.

Don’t mind if we do.

Through the efforts of fabulous friends and the help of family, we were able to pull this shit off and I scored two VIP tickets (yeah, you read that right – VIP bitches) to The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. R. Nasty and I will be gracing our small kids in the big city presence in the Big Apple next week for a taping of the show on Wednesday.

We’re coming to annoy the fuck out of you New York.

Now, I have a hard time finding the bathroom at work, so I have NO CLUE how we will manage roaming a city the size of my home state of Iowa. I’ve never been on a public city bus. I’ve never been on a subway. You’d think that I would have some skills now that I reside in Nashville but sadly, I barely know up from down let alone east from west. Blonde is hard, guys.

My navigational comfort zone.

I’m certain we will look less like city slickers and more like…

Regardless, I can’t wait to make an ass in the city as big as my ass, with R. Nasty patiently waiting out my shenanigans. Or maybe silently fuming. Either way, it’s gonna be a fabulous way to celebrate ACP’s life with a whopping side of shit show.

Cheers to the craziest fun aunt I got to call mine. We all miss you something terrible but I promise to quietly laugh my ass off at the Colbert show for you next week (after probably tripping and falling down some stairs first).

CBXB

Weekend Winks – Bitch Since Birth

Oh, the joys of having a birthday fall on a weekend.

Not hating my day of birth.

I got to do a whole lot of nothing (aka snuggling with pussies on dreary, rainy Friday night and Saturday), squeezed in some gal time with an at-home impromptu cocktail party (where a handle of Captain was drained by Skinny Pirate consumption) and the sprinkles on top of the weekend were the bottomless mimosas I was treated to on Sunday.

Skinny Pirate #1.

After some basketball watching, Skinny Pirates and pie hole stuffing on Friday night, I was beyond elated when I woke up Saturday, realizing I slept 10 consecutive hours. Ten hours people! While this may seem like an overindulgent feat, I haven’t slept more than four hours at a time since Rapegate happened in early 2016. The lack of consistent sleep has only added negatively to my already challenging, stereotypical “blondeness”.

Feeling and looking like a million dollars, I hustled to the fridge and busted out the birthday cake Sister CBXB made while she was here. Then I promptly returned to bed to consume.

Because why the fuck not?!

Theses two demanded a lick.

I got sucked into the footage from the March For Our Lives coverage and holy shit. These fucking kids…I can’t even. My heart was aching while also bursting with pride at the firsthand accounts of honesty regarding an epidemic that knows no class, demographic, race or political affiliation. Gun reform isn’t a republican or democrat problem. It’s an American problem. It’s an issue that these kids who were born after 9/11 and Columbine have faced their entire lives – at schools, churches, movie theaters, concerts and many others face in urban communities daily. How fucked up is that?

I am hopeful that the rally cries this generation is making turns into meaningful legislation with compassion to act because thoughts and prayers aren’t, haven’t and don’t work as we have all witnessed. Realizing it’s encroaching on Second Amendment rights, how does a government limit rights stated in the Constitution and yet, the most basic human right is life itself? Is there truly a reason to have weapons of war in the hands of civilians? The government tells me to wear my seat belt and abide by speed limits (which I mostly do). I must take my fucking shoes off at the airport and walk on ever germy floors because of one shoe bombing incident.

This 11 year old girl spoke more eloquently than most adults I know.

My favorite quote from a Parkland survivor, “We cannot keep America great if we can’t keep America safe.” I love that these kids are fearless in their relentlessness to call bullshit. BRAVO. I stand with you.

Fucking truth.

I was happy to see that even in my home state of Iowa, they were marching even though it was dumping snow on them.

Speaking of Iowa, you know who was cooped up inside after ten inches of snowfall? My twins, who were going to decorate Easter eggs but ended up eating them instead.

Rainy Saturday night rolled around and my gal pal Rasta came over and delivered a very spot on gift.

We can’t wait to wear them to the pool this summer.

Sunday, I lolligagged in the bed just long enough before slipping into my bday giddy up.

I opened up gifts from bed, too….because why not?!

As for my giddy up, it was nothing but class, as always.

BITCH SINCE BIRTH

And, what outfit of mine would be complete without a pair of whore in church heels?

Dada CBXB was one lucky dude, accompanied by five gorgeous gals to brunch.

Practicing our drink counting in prep for football season.

We enjoyed bottomless mimosas, food and for me….

Mimosas.

Presents I obviously hated.

And more mimosas.

I was spoiled beyond but there are no complaints from this chick who got to laugh her ass off with some of the best folks in the world.

Bird Lady and Rasta took me to my fave honky tonk, Robert’s Western World to cap off my day.

Birthday Bliss!

I don’t think we made a scene at all.

Monday morning came waaaaaay too quickly, but it was well worth it.

Cat ass. My morning wake up call.

I’m so lucky to have you guys in my life. Thanks for knowing how to make a lady feel like a queen with all the kind well wishes, messages, cards and calls.

Until next year!

Love ya, mean it.

CBXB

How to Beat the Birthday Alternative

Getting ready to start another 365 fresh days, looking back on birthdays of yesteryear has been bittersweet. I’ve lost (and found!) the “celebrate everyday” mantra that I was so used to pre-Rapegate, coupled with the loss of relationships, deaths and general life changes that have been no control of mine.

YOU WILL CELEBRATE. AND YOU WILL FUCKING LOVE IT.

However, peering back over my shoulder now, there are extremely important lessons that I adhere to even today, as I prepare to celebrate another year of fabulous fun.

Huff. Puff. and Blow.

Huff. Puff. Blow.

Still at it.

Thank God I have candle blowing help now.

1) Always take a peek in a mirror before a photo is snapped, forever capturing the loveliness of you on your special day or you may end up with something like this….

My most gorgeous birthday photo ever.

Hello Gorgeous.

Relax already.

Seriously. Stare in the mirror and give a rat’s ass or you’ll be gazing at your lovely self in something as beautiful as a crocheted vest for years to come.

Crochet nightmare

Fashion at its finest accessorized with wispy bangs.

Celebrate

Own advice not taken. Clearly.

2) Upon receiving presents, always act like you’ve just received the best.gift.ever. Even if you have no clue what it is or have no intention of ever wearing/using/displaying/eating/drinking.

Always act surprised.

Holy shit! I love it! No, truly I do.

3) Hold up fingers to commemorate which age you were celebrating, as these photos will end up in albums and you won’t always remember what outfit you wore which year (side note: how hilarious is it that I have a shirt on that says First Mate, First Mate?).

Insist

I’m this many today.

Even if you’re not quite sure how old you are, own whatever you are saying which will demand more attention on you.

Even

If I say I’m two and a half, I AM TWO AND A HALF, ya dig?

When you’re out of fingers on both hands, just count drinks.

Three times….infinity?

4) Cake matters. Choose your design wisely.

Scoobs.

Everyone wants a piece of Scooby.

Then insist someone hand feed it to you.

Keepin' it classy. As usual.

Keepin’ it classy. As usual.

Just be careful if your cake starts on fire due to the copious amount of candles.

5) Practice your ‘birthday face’ so you can look adorable in all photos.

Mug for the camera.

Oh who me? Why yes it is my birthday. I’ll just hold this pose for the rest of the day.

Camera!

Adorableness fail.

Oh hi, just an adorable Mexican giddy-up for a girl who can’t keep her eyes open.

6) Be sure to have a themed party. Even if it involves you looking like an ass clown.

theme

Send in the clowns.

Even if no one shows up, you still look like you got it going on.

7) Dance, jump and twirl to your heart’s content, acting as if you have one ounce of rhythm somewhere in your being.

PARTY!

Shake, rattle and rollin’ expected.

Dance

High kicks accepted.

Head banging also accepted.

Head banging also welcomed but you’ll regret it in the morning. Trust me.

8) Noisy favors are a must. Especially if party goers are under the age of six.

Blow it out.

Blow out birthday party.

It’ll wear them out and force them to be couch potatoes.

Overcrowded couch? What’s better than that?

9) Always go with the celebratory flow.

Go with the flow

Balloons in my hair? Sounds like a good birthday look.

Or at least let someone catch you when the flow gets to be too much for you to stand on your own.

Hey-oh!

Hey-oh!

10) Don’t ever turn away a birthday kiss, no matter how much you think it may hurt your face.

Scruffy faces hurt my cheek. Always low maintenance.

Always being low maintenance, scruffy faces hurt my cheek. Shave already!

Presh loves to French kiss. Don’t judge.

11) Even if you share the same birthday with a cousin (gentleman to my left in photo below with thrilled look on his face) be sure you try to be the star of the show anyhow.

Sharing

Sorry. Not sorry B. Happy Birthday by the way!

12) Never, ever, ever, ever turn down a birthday shot. Ever.

Why thank you

Birthdays taste so good.

13) Enjoy the fuck out of the loved ones who surround you for celebration because you never know when it’ll be the last time.

Teddy B and me.

Crazy and Aunt Crazy Pants.

This year, I’ll be drinking to the wise words my Gma always told me as I bitched about growing another year older, “having another birthday sure beats the alternative.”

She was one smart lady.

I’ll drink to that!

No matter how hard I have to huff, puff and blow on my candles.

Cheers to your birthdays of yesteryear – as well as a year full of the happiest of birthdays for all of us and those we hold dear!

CBXB

CBXB!

 

Lucky Charm

Cinderella once sang “you don’t know what you got till it’s gone.”

I’m talking about the hair metal 80s band, not the princess of course.

I think we all can relate to the sentiment in one way or another. However, when it comes to peeps in my life that I love, you’re either in or out. One quality that I gratefully possess is I am never regretful of time spent with folks that I hold in my heart, nor do I take time with them for granted. That’s why for me, when you love the fuck out of someone and they no longer roam the earth, it can be a heart yanking time when their milestones still appear annually.

Aunt Crazy Pants celebrated her first birthday above on February 23, and in honor of this occasion, Mama CBXB came to Nashville and we par-tayed the only we way our family ever does. Trashtacularly.

On ACP’s actual day of birth, we took her to get her cocktail of choice, gin rickeys, at my fave local watering hole, Dalts.

A hungover day later, we went to get permanent tributes of the lady whose favorite color was green, loved shamrocks and owned one of the most unique signatures ever, which is what we were going to have tattooed on our wrists. I gussied up in my green heels I fashioned at the celebration of ACP’s life, perfected my mani to match and we were ready to go.

Naked and afraid.

While mother/daughter bonding over tattoos may seem odd to you, it’s sort of a family tradition in my clan (which should shock no one hence Jell-O shots with Gma at Christmas and Iowa Hawkeye moonshine touchdown shots are also custom family practices, well shared on this blog).

In summers of yesteryear, our families would spend Fourth of Julys at the Lake of the Ozarks. Which entailed not only in boating and booze but often tattoos and belly button piercings. Yes, yes, you read that right. I even think we made each new girlfriend of our dude cousins get belly button rings on their first Fourth with us. (A dream come true family that acts like a fraternity right here folks).

I was with ACP when she got her first ink from none other than the not even close to being world famous Tattoo Ted in the Ozarks.

We may have had one or eight drinks with sun poisoning but what did it matter?

With our history of classiness, we brought ACP along with us in spirit as Mama CBXB and I rolled into the Rebel Yell Tattoo and Social Club that came highly recommended.

When we traipsed through the doors, I’m fairly certain all four folks in the shop on a bright and sunny Saturday afternoon were well aware that this wasn’t a past time in which we often partook. Especially when I wondered aloud with Justin, our extremely patient artist, how a tattoo on my wrist would look when I do jazz hands. Because I use them a lot. Like, we seriously had a five-minute conversation about it, he put a stencil on my wrist with ACP’s name facing me and let me look in a mirror before I decided how I wanted the fucking three-inch artwork done.

I mean you guys. Obvies we use them.

All.the.time.

Maybe our novice was a dead giveaway when I asked my mom 400 times in the seven minutes it took Justin to tattoo her wrist if she was going to cry when it was over (she did – Tearfest 2018).

My defense mechanism against physical pain is apparently laughing because it’s all I did the entire time my four-minute ink was being perfected. Justin kept stopping to ask if I was OK and all I could do was giggle in the most unquiet way possible.

All in all, mission accomplished.

Shortest time frame yet most annoying tattoo subject ever to grace Rebel Yell.

Getting any type of tattoo makes one a bad ass motherfucker, right?

I mean, look at my recovery plastic.

So what did these bad ass mother fuckers do? Celebrated with cocktails of course!

And it just so happened that two of ACP’s grandgirls came through Nashville that night, so we all cheersed our hearts out to the lady we love and miss.

Bittersweet without sharing the experience with ACP, there’s something ultra comforting to know she’s right here on my wrist. There have been some dark days for me recently, and I’ve found myself flipping my wrist over, admiring her signature, reminiscing on conversations, knowledge, 1,573,982,400 laughs and love we shared over her lifetime.

What I come to think of most is right after Rapegate, ACP was one of the first phone calls I received as the news made its way through my family. Her first words were, “you’re already one helluva strong lady – but you’ll be the strongest woman you know now.” The same words rang true when we found out she had terminal cancer six months later – and I repeated her words of wisdom back to her.

While cancer can go fuck itself, I’m comforted by the fact that I knew what I had with ACP before she was gone. Which is why her absence is ever present, more so now that I’m a bad ass mother fucker with a fancy signature on my wrist.

Know what you’ve got before it’s gone.

Now who wants to go get tattoo sleeves with me?

It could be the experience of your lifetime.

CBXB