How to Hit Rock Bottom by Twirling

What happens when something – or someone hits rock bottom?

I dunno. You tell me.

According to the dictionary rock bottom is defined two ways, with a third added by me:

rock-bot·tom

ˌräk ˈbädəm/

adjective

  • at the lowest possible level.
  • “rock-bottom prices”

noun

  • the lowest possible level.
  • “morale is at rock bottom”

 CBXB style

  • hit head as hard as possible on concrete
  • “head hit rock bottom”

I took the phrase rock bottom in a very literal way a few Fridays ago, as I twirled around in a parking lot, lost my footing IN FLATS (Louis Vuitton if we’re keeping track) landing only on my noggin which was cushioned by a yellow concrete tire stop.

An absolute guarantee my twirl was not as cute as this girl’s.

I can also guarantee that the concrete was not as cozy as this cushion.

I lost time but never consciousness. My head didn’t crack open and I didn’t have any kind of bump, so no visit to the emergency room commenced. I’ve fallen down so much in my life, this was just a par for the course in my novel.  I spent the night on a friend’s couch aided with water, ice and a high dose of ibuprofen.

The next morning, I did have quite the headache but only where I’d fallen on my head, so I wasn’t concerned.  I retrieved my car, ate breakfast, drank coffee, water, went to the pool, had wine, snacks, wine, supper and wine.

Totally fine enough to go to the pool.

Then that evening, I took a turn for the confused, belligerent and ended up at my mom’s house escorted by Bird Lady who kept telling me, “you’re not making any sense.” (Author’s side note: not uncommon for yours truly to not make any sense due to my self-described ‘blonde brain’ so this was waaaaaaay beyond my usual rambling).

Wait. What’s happening?

Upon waking Sunday, my entire body throbbed from my hairline, behind my eyeballs, my teeth, my neck, spine, knees and somehow in the middle of the night, my right big toe turned black and blue. I was a fucking mess.

Rock bottom if you will.

Mama CBXB had the pleasure of icing my head, listening to me complain about being nauseous, then getting to clean up after her grown ass daughter as I missed the bowl upon abruptly vomiting, when my symptoms were getting more serious. We called my health insurance nurse’s triage line and the on-call doctor at my general practitioner’s office for advice. It was decided I could miserably wait until Monday to see my doctor.

Ice. Ice. Baby.

I rewarded Dada CBXB for being my dad by giving him a reason to waste PTO days on, again, his grown ass daughter. Really, I’m just looking for more ways to bond with him at hospitals. So far, we’ve endured the removal of my tonsils, a busted face stitched up after an aluminum bat hit in 7th grade, Rapegate, his colonoscopy this year and now, my inability to twirl in a parking lot.

Hospital bonding.

I had a CT scan and X-ray of my foot (Dada CBXB just added my out-of-pocket cost to my ever-growing bill) performed, with the results saying there was no brain bleed, just a severe concussion. And a broken fucking toe (I have no idea how in the fuck I managed to break a toe and concuss myself all in the same twirl down, but somehow, I managed).

My doctor prescribed a week of no concentration and rest. No reading. No screen time on the phone and computer. No driving. No work. Just literally sitting and relaxing. And use a cane to help with the fucking toe. Oh, and I couldn’t be alone, so again, Dada CBXB cashed in four more PTO days and waited on his klutzy as fuck kid.

Oh woe is me.

So I decided the best way to communicate my neediness was to not look at him and ask for something while he sat three feet from me on the couch, but instead, I rang a bell.

I got used to the bell in about .000000003 seconds.

Leading up to my twirl down, I was insanely tired. My chronic fatigue has been in full force almost the entirety of this summer. I’d get restless sleep (because Shane the Rapist appears in my dreams but is just there – like, if I’m at a party, he’s there too. But nothing happens to me in the dream, well really, nightmare). So, I couldn’t remember the last time I woke up feeling refreshed. It’s basically been my job to be as relaxed as possible so that’s even become a chore. How fucked up is that? Three minutes of my life have doled out almost three years of recovery – with many more to come.

But, I’m back doing my beloved hot yoga, which helped me wind down in the past.

I take bubble baths after yoga. I read. I take my meds as needed. I drink sleepy time tea an hour before bed. I have a sound machine. I smell lavender. I put oil on my pulse points. I wear a sleep mask. I have a weighted blanket that is supposed to help with relaxation. I mean Jesus tap dancing Christ, this is my nightly ritual that shouldn’t seem like a fucking chore. But nothing was really working for my exhaustion and I was a train in dire need of some WD-40 on my wheels before they rolled completely away.

GO THE FUCK TO SLEEP.

Something had to give – and so, it did.

It came in the form of a severe concussion and a broken toe, forcing my ass to sit still and let others step in and care for me.

More water, please.

I can’t remember the last time I ate three meals a day consecutively since January 29, 2016. Well, that was remedied quickly.

My dad’s omelettes are my fave.

His BLT lettuce boats aren’t bad, either.

His stuffed peppers don’t suck.

Nor do his chicken lettuce wraps.

Chef Boyarcbxbeeee

I can’t remember the last time I took hour-long naps in the middle of the day.

Let’s get some day zzzz’s.

I can’t remember my dad ever watching the Bachelorette or Bachelor in Paradise, but we did.

New shows on the radar.

I can’t remember the last time I slept ten consecutive hours overnight. But I did.

I know you can’t tell, but I’m well rested.

I can’t remember ever not feeling like I’d swallowed the weight of a bowling ball in my belly since January 29 of 2016. But that feeling is gone.

The feeling of not feeling like I’ve swallowed a 14 lb. bowling ball.

The thing is, I’ve been treading water justenough to keep from drowning to the depths of my own personal Bermuda Triangle. There’s no escaping the aftermath of any trauma but when I started making baby steps in progress, even if I’d regress some later, it seemed so daunting to get up on that goddamn horse and try, try again.

When I saw glimpses of pre-Rapegate me starting to shine through my cracks, I wanted to do everything at once to grasp, hold on, keep the feeling there. I wanted to fight through therapy and come out on the other end, meet with the detective and sergeant of the Nashville Sex Crimes department to discuss the mishandling of my case, lose the 40 lbs I’ve gained since being raped, feel confident no matter what, work out daily, keep the mini manse sparking clean, be “on” and “happy” at work, make my bed without feeling like I should earn a gold medal for that feat, eating even though I have no appetite, grocery shopping, taking and keeping track of my meds, paint my nails, gussy up, take pride in my appearance, not wanting to make people who care about me worry, trying to not feel like a burden to those who do love me, avoiding panic attacks only to have them creep on stronger, listening to the judgement of others not solicited from folks who mean well and like to offer suggestions and the “I told you so” phrase even though they aren’t medical professionals or have experienced my exact trauma, remaining relaxed to try to sleep, trying to save money and pay back loans while keeping my lights on, dealing with life and loss like a normal person when I’m feeling like a tsunami inside (loss of self, ferociousness, confidence, dignity, ashamed of being raped (all daily feelings), my best fur friend Teddy Bear died, my second mom, Aunt Crazy Pants died, a friend of mine cut me out of his life completely with no explanation, a job loss, Precious my beloved Chug died – and this is all just part of fucking life) – I have been exhausted to the marrow of my bones.

Then, I suffered a severe concussion.

I first thought maybe one of those stupid cardinal wings of Aunt Crazy Pants’s was under my head, keeping me out of further harm when my noggin hit the concrete. Looking back now, I’m wondering if everyone who is a cardinal in Heaven and loves me joined forces and pushed my ass down, knowing I needed to stop.the.madness that had become my life. I was circling the drain in a bad way and I needed my ass kicked to stop it.

Thanks for the shove from above. Let’s not do it again, mmmkay?

Thankfully because of my family and friends (virtual and in real life), the Sparkly Army, that – if you’re reading this, you’re a part of– I’m back at it again.

Albeit a tad slower.

Canes are cool, right?

Unless you are my parents, sister, family, friends, or co-workers. In their case it’s me, then you.

Happy to report I’m on the mend, hobbling around on a broken toe, which is like a glimpse into my nursing home future.

If ever I twirl down again, I hope I’m in more appropriate attire.

Twirl at your own risk.

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

Weekend Winks – Abu Dhabi Derby Day

Ever wonder just how cliché it is to be a crazy cat lady?

Well, here is a peek into a wild Friday evening with me and my fave pussies.

You may just see two cats.

Rocky and Ted with front row lap seats.

We found ourselves minus plans after staying late the last day of the work week, so we huddled on the couch to catch up on some DVR (before my player spontaneously combusts at always being asked to remain 99% full). Except when we went to watch our weekly shows, a rerun of an Adele concert was on live TV.

But we're all watching live TV. A rerun A adele

And it captivated all of us.

Then between sobs, listening to Adele pine away at whatever it is her magical voice pines for, we tried to call every ex-boyfriend and girlfriend between the six of us (yes I have five furballs – and no, I give zero fucks about what folks think in regard, hence the crazy cat lady label!) because it seemed like the right thing to do.

Adele told us to.

S.O.S.

S.O.S.

After getting zero ex answers across the board (Teddy had the most to call), we woke to a bright, shiny Kentucky Derby Saturday. No one was more excited than Princess B who has discovered the many ‘looks’ Snapchat has to offer (why does my three-year-old niece know more about social media than moi?).

Derby Darling

Derby Darling.

I met up with Bird Lady, using the excuse for the Derby to day drink although we didn’t really adhere to any of the fancy rules.

No horses. No tiny jockeys. No hats. No mint juleps. Still fun

No horses. No tiny jockeys. No hats. No mint juleps.

However, I did place a bet on the race.  Since money is an object to me, I wagered a shot and when this kind gentlemen lost miserably, he paid in full. And now I have a new favorite shot: The Fresca.

I only bet booze. And I won.

I only bet booze.

And somehow this teeny tiny Abu Dhabi bar mug ended up in my purse by the end of the evening.

Trophy of sorts.

Trophy of sorts.

Sunday was for lovin’ on all of the mamas and mine was showered with flowers.

CBXB flower power mama.

The power of flower.

My sister was getting extra specially spoiled on her third mother’s day with a manicure, compliments of Princess B.

Princess B has mastered the Mother;s Day mani.

Just like the spa.

Obviously.

Obviously.

Bored Prince B waited patiently for the paint to dry on his mother’s nails so she could be off doing better things.

Can't be bothered.

Like pushing these two in a tire swing.

IMG_1754

Mother’s Day isn’t just for those chicks who have squeezed human life out of their bodies.

No way. No how.

Do you know how hard it is to open a bag of food every damn day?

Scoop a littler box?

Give every little furry being their own attention before they ignore you for 23.75 hours per day?

Exhausting.

Sweet friends reminded me of my status in the world.

Turns out, for us cray cray fur ball ladies, you really can buy love.

Turns out, you can buy love.

Preshy thinks so too.

Preshy thinks so too.

There was no better wind down for this mom of five than my sudsy Sunday soak while everyone was participating in their 23.75 hour daily ignore fest.

Just what a mama needs.

Just what a mama needs.

Here’s hoping you got just what you needed this weekend.

Cheers!
CBXB

CBXB!

 

My Mom Kicks Ass

Roses are red, violets are blue,

Today is your birthday, Mom and here’s a poem for you.

Favorite pictures from the past are always a hoot,

This one is my favorite although I look like a goof.

Yo Mama

Often times through the years we looked so cute,

Good times

But sometimes I see photos I wish we could color mute.

Did a rainbow throw up on this picture?!

You’ve lead us through the sea of life,

In the sea of life, you taught me how to keep my head above water...

Like a bright, shining, ray of light.

Made mon Russ

While two girls were just perfect for our close knit clan,

Yo Mama

You were thrilled to add a son-in-law and then twins to the fam!

Fun Day Father's Day!

You’re a party girl at heart,

And everyone always wants you around when the fun starts.

Taught me the value of a good cheers!

You taught me the importance of good cheer

And how to dance with jazz hands showing no fear.

And how to keep the party going strong!

Some folks were jealous of me, having you as my mom

And I don’t blame them one bit because you’re the bomb!

Like mother, like daughter!

So for some birthday fun, put your dancing shoes on

For tomorrow night we’re going downtown to get our honky tonk on!

Love you!

CBXB

CBXB!

Yo, Mama!

Roses are red, violets are blue,

Today is your birthday, Mom and here’s a poem for you.

Favorite pictures from the past are always a hoot,

This one is my favorite although I look like a goof.

Yo Mama

Often times through the years we looked so cute,

Good times

But sometimes I see photos I wish we could color mute.

Did a rainbow throw up on this picture?!

You’ve lead us through the sea of life,

In the sea of life, you taught me how to keep my head above water...

Like a bright, shining, ray of light.

Made mon Russ

While two girls were just perfect for our close knit clan,

Yo Mama

You were thrilled to add a son-in-law and then twins to the fam!

Fun Day Father's Day!

You’re a party girl at heart,

And everyone always wants you around when the fun starts.

Taught me the value of a good cheers!

You taught me the importance of good cheer

And how to dance with jazz hands showing no fear.

And how to keep the party going strong!

Some folks were jealous of me, having you as my mom

And I don’t blame them one bit because you’re the bomb!

Like mother, like daughter!

So for some birthday fun, put your dancing shoes on

For tomorrow night we’re going downtown to fawn,

All over Bruno Mars as he sings us his songs!

Surprise!
CBXB

CBXB!

How to Make Your Mom Piss Her Pants

And/or throw her back out…

When I was a kid, my friend Scooby (yes, the one who was just here this weekend. Miss our shenanigans? Do yourself a favor and click here,) had a knack of hiding in my front bushes at any time of the day or night.  He’d wait for the opportune moment to pop up, pound on the windows and give my mother a heart attack (her chair sat right next to the window), therefore making her piss her pants or throw her back out (thankfully, she has a strong heart but a weak bladder after two 10 lb babies).

The master of suspense would also creep around the back of my house on a Saturday night, while I was watching movies downstairs and just stand in the light outside the double french doors and stare.  My sister and I would scream bloody murder, therefore making my mother sprint like an Olympian to the basement from her slumber.

So what better way to spend a drunken Saturday afternoon when Scooby was visiting Nashville than to perform a surprise attack on my mom? It was a no-brainer in our book.

Bah!

Surprise!

Is that a pee face?

Is that a pee face?

Full disclosure: The pictures below are staged reenactments.  No mother was hurt during this photo shoot.

blah

She can’t believe history is repeating itself.

Full Disclosure: A reinactment

Do you like the props we added for dramatic effect?

I’m proud to state that no bladders were emptied and all back muscles remained in tact during this scare.

Does that mean Scooby is losing his edge?

Gotcha!

Revisiting the chest clutch.

My mom sure hopes this is true.

CBXB

CBXB!