The Life and Times of Poopwa Foley

Archive for the ‘communicating’ Category

This is OUR new baby.  I guess we’re not too old to give birth.

My sister and I recently finished, proofread, edited, revised, polished, (and every other word you can think of) our manuscript Baylyn, Bewitched, a whimsical story about a quirky witch with a big secret.  We had a lot of fun writing it. 

Well, that’s not exactly true.  It’s hard work.  It’s blood, sweat, and tears.  It’s late nights after your husband has gone to bed.  It’s saying, “I can’t go, I’m working” and not feeling bad that others might say, “writing?  that’s not working.”   It’s early mornings and lunch hours in coffee shops.  It’s taking a notebook and pen every single place you go, just in case you have a wonderful idea for your masterpiece…it’s there, so you can jot it down.  It’s Saturdays and Sunday’s chores being done early so that you can sit down and write in the evening.  It’s staying accountable.  It’s hard.

Like I said, we had a lot of fun writing it.  And despite all that “fun”, we’re already knee deep in the writing of the next book in the series: Cat, Charmed.  That one should be out by the end of the summer.

For now, you can find our book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords.

Happy reading!

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Part deux 

After my last medical visit a la the ultrasound from hell, I wanted to know when I’d find out what was going on in my “downstairs area”. 
Me:  How long will it take to get the results?
Them:  at least a couple of days.  Rest assured, you’ll have plenty of time for worrying.
Me:  (heart hammering in chest) Ok.
It didn’t take a couple of days to get the results.  The phone rang the very next day, less than 24 hours after the ultrasound, while I was lost in Naperville trying desperately to find Edwards Hospital, so that I could make it on time for my mother’s gall bladder surgery. 
It’s never good when they don’t waste any time calling you with the results. 
I listened to the results with half an ear while On Starring and Bluetoothing, watching desperately for street signs, looking for my turn, catching various words here and there out of the speakers.  Abnormal.  Hyperplasia.  Polyp.  Cyst.  And my absolute favorite, Biopsy.
I’m sure you’re all wondering how serious this really was.  And the answer is:  It was very serious because I was really, really lost.  When I finally found the hospital, I told all this to the valet parker boy, who actually yawned when I told him what an adventure finding the hospital was.  Your tip is going to suck, buddy.
Three hours I waited with my sister and stepdad for Mom’s surgery/recovery time.  Three hours is quite a bit of time to freak out reflect on the doctor’s choice of words.   
The hospital aide came out to tell us that Mom wanted coffee, and she wanted my stepdad to make it because he knew how she liked it prepared.  We all knew then that mom was recovering just fine. **
My biopsy was schedule for two weeks from that day.  Two weeks have never gone slower. 

Biopsy day

Two weeks have never gone faster, and before I knew it, the nurse called me to take two ibuprofen before the procedure, because I’d get a little crampy.  That day, I learned something vitally important.  What you think is crampy and what I think is crampy are two vastly different things.  The nurse on the phone advised me to take two ibuprofen before the procedure.  The nurse I actually saw that day in the room of horrors procedure room felt bad that I didn’t have the afternoon off, even though I sit down at my job. 
Of course, I took my cue from her facial expression, (pity mixed with compassion and a side order of sympathy) stiffened up, and unfortunately stayed tense the entire time, making it even far more difficult for the doctor and far more painful for me.
Doctor:  Relax! 
Me:  I’m trying!  (I am not trying.  I’m not relaxed at all, and I don’t know how anyone could be.)
I had the biopsy.  Here’s what I think they used… 



ntwowe/freedigitalphotos.net
There were many more sharp things sticking out of the tool they used on me.



…but it felt much larger. 
Me and my new friend Cramps went back to work that day for a couple of painful hours, then went home and curled up on the couch where I would spend the rest of the night milking this for every single second I could. 
It worked.  I got pizza that night.  And a nap.
They told me I’d get my results back within a couple of days.  I selfishly hoped that I wouldn’t get them back on my birthday, so I could sail through my 46th birthday blissfully ignorant of anything biopsy-related.  They granted that wish and called me the day after.
This time it was with a good word:  benign.  It even sounds nice in your mouth.  Say it with me:  Beeeenine.
Despite the pleasant tastiness of that word, I have to go back and be poked, prodded and ultra sounded one more time, and then my doctor will make a decision on what to do with my whiny self at that point.  Obviously, the female issues are being caused by something and they’d like to find my tolerance for pain figure out what it is. 
I’d like for them to figure out what it is too.  There are some *cough activities cough* that we’d I’d like to resume.  While I’m still young.
***My mom:  recovering nicely.  Her surgery that day was at 10:45 a.m.  She was home drinking coffee at her kitchen table by 3:30 p.m. looking for all the world like we just popped in for a visit.  It was amazing and we’re all glad she’s ok.
Are you having a hard time communicating with your youngster?  Do you talk to your child, only to have them roll their eyes?  Shrug their shoulders?  Mumble a barely audible response?  Shoot you a look of thinly disguised contempt?  All of the above?  Congratulations, you have a teenager. 

Not so long ago and far away, my lucky husband and I had THREE of them in the house at one time.  It was, quite simply, a magical experience.  And by magical I mean NOT magical.  No, not magical at all.  At one point or another, someone was mad at me, or my husband, or each other, or a significant other, sometimes, every other living, breathing human being in the house, AND the dog.  For fun, sometimes it’s more than one child who’s upset. 

There was a LOT of drama going on a few short years ago in our house (and not much has changed, to be quite honest…they’re just older.)  Hubby and I used to walk around on eggshells, never knowing who might be offended by the simple patter of our adult footfalls or sound of our laughter.  How dare we be happy, when they were so obviously miserable

The problem is, however, that teenagers don’t like to actually TALK to you about what is going on.  Parents of teenagers already know this.  They will certainly make you aware that they are upset, but to actually communicate with you?  That would be ridiculous.  It’s much more fun to keep you guessing why the door to their room is locked, or why they’re pushing around the food on their plate sullenly instead of shoveling it in like usual, or why they’re lying on the couch crying with a cell phone and a box of Kleenex.  Not telling you why.  Sobbing loudly, especially when you walk by.  

Do they not know that as parents, we have been through our share of issues?  Dating trouble, work trouble, personal issues, you name it.  Ask us for advice!  We LOVE to talk!  I realize there are issues that teens face now that weren’t around 20 years ago.  Case in point:  texting and instant messaging.  There were times when we’ve had to comfort one child or another because they got a text or instant message they thought was mean.    

We have tried, over and over, to explain to them that with those types of communication, you can’t hear an inflection.  What is written is not always what you think it means.  When reading a text, instant message or Facebook post, it is not only possible but likely that you may mistake their meaning for something else. 

It is absolutely perplexing to me why more teens won’t just pick up the phone and CALL each other already.   Communicate clearly.   (author’s note:  I actually DO know why they text.  It’s easier and quicker and you don’t have to leave a voice mail, and I guarantee you will get their voicemail because no one answers their phones…they’re too busy texting.) 

One way to get your child to communicate is by journaling with them.  Get a spiral notebook, and compose a chatty note to your teen in it.  Date it, and stick it under their pillow with a note that it’s now THEIR turn to write in it, to you.  You will be amazed at what they will spills out in the pages of those notebooks…things that they (especially girls) would NEVER tell you in person, but feel on paper they’re ok to share.    

(another author’s note:  I myself have used this technique and was gratified at how easily my youngest daughter agreed to “pass the notebook”.  I was also slightly shocked at some of the information she shared, but that’s a story for another day. ) 

Find different ways to interact with each child, if you have more than one.  Make sure you get to spend some alone time with each one.  Take them grocery shopping with you.  Despite the fact that you’ll end up with $20 in junk food in the cart, it will be fun.  Make a pit stop for ice cream.  Be yourself, joke around, and it’s a pleasant surprise when your child actually might start making conversation.  

Maybe then, you can both LOL.


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  • Mary Fran Says: Thank you for contributing to Sweeps Week! We make a great team. Maybe we'll collaborate in our next lives? SISTERS! lol :)
  • Mary Fran Says: What's better than a Baby Shower aka Early Baby Birthday Party? Baby's FIRST Birthday Party! (Although it's hard to call them "baby" by one! They grow
  • Ann Jones: I'll have to check it out, thanks for the heads up!

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