Quarantine has taught me

I know it has been awhile. Yes, I have had plenty of time to write being in isolation and all, but as usual there were too many words rushing through my head. I have given this post some thought, about forty eight hours or so, and I cannot hold it in any longer.

Even as a forty something year old woman, I still struggle with the queen B’s, cliques, and general fakery that goes on between women. WOMEN- for those that did not catch it the first time. I am getting better with learning to spot it and move on from it, but at times I wonder if that leaves me jaded?

During quarantine I really tried to stay off of social media. I checked my Facebook notifications daily in case a craft crisis had occurred in one of my craft groups, but I tried not to scroll and I did not post. But, then I started to scroll the closer we got to the end of isolation. I saw people, Facebook “friends”, some I thought who were real friends posting all about their journey to become more open, accept more friends, blah, blah, blah. I saw others just having a grand time with each other , kids playing together, laughing. Here I am stuck in a depression watching Netflix.

This may sound like a pity party. I assure you it’s not. It is perplexing. I have put myself out there. I have joined groups. I have helped at my daughters school. I have done everything I know to make mom friends. The mom friends that are in a clique, well they were in a clique in high school too together. This is the part I did not know happened. I did not know that clique carried over into adulthood. I have changed since high school, but y’all haven’t?

It’s just so confusing. So sad. Frustrating. Lonely. Quarantine made me realize the fakery and mean girls of grown women.

What kind of ship is your marriage?

Ya’ll, I have really been struggling lately. That’s just the real, raw, honest truth. I know we all go through things, but for the past month my anxiety and depression has really had a hold on me. I knew it was coming due to some medication issues, which is the hard part about depression, knowing it’s there and not being able to do anything about it.
Just as things were starting to feel normal again, Tommy and I were hit with a HUGE curve ball!!! I mean, the kind that hits you in the stomach and takes your breath away. This time instead of breaking down and just living in it, I prayed. Well, I pray all the time. My mind is always running so it’s sort of an open dialogue between me and God, but this time I deliberately prayed. I was honest, I didn’t even know what I was praying for. I mean, it wasn’t a health issue. It wasn’t like we were going to be homeless. It was just something that effected us big time and took another swing at us coming out the other side of these last long 5 years.
So Tommy came home for his few days off the road and sat down and “looked” at the books. Somehow, he figured it out. Sure, I can give up my dream of going back to school and just go back to work, and of course that was on the table. But we know that isn’t best for our family. I then realized that not only had God answered my prayers, I mean I didn’t have all the money we needed, but he had given us a way to provide. My husband. That was the answer. This man that for the last 5 years has listened to me complain about this decision and not get over how we got here. But now, in this moment it’s where we needed to be. He is able to provide what we need. He is able to provide what other responsibilities he has. More importantly he is willing to do it. That is the answer to the prayer to our huge curve ball.
But it was a friend of mine that sort of pulled me out. She asked questions better than a therapist. She asked about the past, like “do you blame him for this” and “do you blame him for that” and “do you trust him”. After all the ugliness, which I never deny , was there all on the table she then asked, “do you believe that together, you two can handle anything”? That was the moment I got it. I understood that I was harboring all of the resentment for the past 5 years despite that we continued to hold onto one another and make it through anything. There was no reason to keep the resentment. There was no reason to keep the ill will. First, there was no infidelity. It was just a fucked up situation that happened. I was mad for all sorts of reasons. But in that once conversation with my friend I realized that despite being mad, we had made it through because we can make it through anything together. That’s our love.
So I let it go. I let that heavy ball go. I prayed. I realized what the real answer was and had been. I also read something that was so poignant. It compared marriage to a ship.
All of this time, even though I had been carrying ice bergs with me, my marriage was a strong ship, not the Titanic. I had been so preoccupied with what caused the rough water that I didn’t notice the strong ship that we had built and how it was withstanding the waves and wind because of the two of us holding it together. I am grateful for my prayer, I am grateful for that friend that gave me the perspective, and I am grateful for my shipmate.  

I don’t know what you’re first words were, oh well!

Blasphemy! I know, I know! I am a terrible mother. I am not saying that for pity of martyrdom, but seriously, there are key childhood, key baby moments that I just do not have the answers to. But my dear penguin, before you take to the therapist couch just yet and carry all of my baggage with you ( Vera Bradley or Tumi please), please know I have very solid reasons for not knowing some of these answers.

Maybe it’s turning 40 this past year. Maybe it is because she just went to her first dance (daddy-daughter dance) and then I saw pictures of the eighth grade dance on social media and immediately thought “ahh, I can’t take it, that’s next. And then the prom”. Or maybe it’s the People magazine article I read on the opioid crisis among young adults and that sent me tumbling down another rabbit hole all together. But anyhow, I saw this beautiful advertisement on Zulily for one of the chalkboard milestone fill ins that are so popular these days and I started thinking, “I don’t know the answers to those questions “.

The parent fills in X for age, then other answers such as “I can ___”, “My favorite toy___”, and “My favorite foods___”. Oh my did I start feeling like a failure. I immediately asked Tommy for answers and went into a diatribe of “was she going to end up with an empty, or half filled baby book and just a box of keepsakes from her childhood like he has in a closet of his married home”!?!?!? Yes! I spin out easily and fast. Clearly these meds are not working. Which he did mention, have you started the new hormones? I digress.

Tommy , your daddy my dearest love penguin, says your first words were something of the “da-da-da-da” nature. Leaning towards “daddy”. I do not disagree. I am sure even at just a few months old you knew who would be the calmer of the two of us. Please know I have a good reason for not having these answers.

I truly do not remember exactly when you took your first steps. I was too busy trying to protect you from hurting yourself when you did.

I am not sure what you favorite foods were. I only wanted to feed you the healthiest and the best and whatever had the least like-ability you wouldn’t choke on it.

I do not think you had a favorite toy because I did not let you sleep with anything. I did not let you sleep without being held for the first two weeks of your life and then after that you slept without anything close to you, on a breathing monitor with a video monitor. I did this because I was scared of something happening while you slept.

So, no I don’t have all the answers from your baby days. I don’t know all of your first. There were days I was so anxiety ridden with something happening to you that those days led to sleepless nights. I’ve just tried to protect you since the day you were born. I don’t have the answers because I was too busy loving you.

*Disclaimer: I do not insinuate that parents who do know the answers love their children any less. This is my blog. My thoughts.

I made a decision

I realize my post earlier today was short and puzzling. That is okay. But, I have made an astonishing decision while watching T.V., which for some reason I tend to think a lot while doing. Part of the reason I could not seem to connect my thoughts to paper earlier is my depression and anxiety. But, I am trying something new to see if it works.

Acceptance. I am going to accept that I am on a carousel of cleaning, laundry, etc and move on. I know it sounds weird, but I have been stubbornly fighting it ever since I became a stay at home mom. “What do you think housewives do?” You ask? Well….I’m not saying I thought I should never clean, but I guess I really thought it was more balanced. I know, delusional. I have been causing myself the anxiety by fighting it all this time. I must accept that I am now Cinderella before the ball and there is no glass slipper in my future.

The glass slipper in this case would be my anxiety going down, having more patience which will lead to a happier home life. This may seem delusional too. Maybe it is? Maybe I’m hungry and my blood sugar is low and I’m not thinking clearly. Who knows? Really at this point I’ll give it a try though. I really have to relax. I don’t mean sitting around, I mean mentally , and if that means just accepting that I am to clean up behind everyone and take care of everything then I’ll give it a whirl. My body cannot take much more of this constant stress and anxiousness.

So, here we go. Acceptance.

I’m baaack…….sort of?

Well, old friend, it sure has been awhile. I have no idea where the time has gone or the pen or the paper. No excuses for why I haven’t written. I have tried to keep every little detail, every memory tucked away in a special folder in my mind and heart. But, it sure does feel good to have the keys below my finger tips and hear the tapping of them in my ears as I pour out the song of my heart from the last year of mountains and mole hills.

I have joined the class of women I often have blogged about before. The women who get to exercise at 6:30 in the morning. The women who go to their children’s school events. YES, those women. I am that woman now, that mom. I joined the stay at home mom club back in May 2018. There was no ceremony, no pinning, no certificate even. Just a miserable job, a discussion over bourbon with my husband, a 2 1/2 month notice -that turned shorter thank you JESUS– and then one day I just became a stay at home mom. I dropped the penguin off at school in my pajamas and I picked her up in my pajamas. I’m not going to lie. There was only two weeks left of school at this point. Wait a minute, actually, the first week she continued to go to after school care so I picked her up around 5:00 in my pajamas. That’s right, that’s why I didn’t get the certificate, because I didn’t start running at 6:30 a.m. right away.

Sarcasm aside, as much as I can push it away anyhow, I am not going to gush about how I love being a stay at home mom. Don’t get me wrong. I do love being a stay at home mom. But not exactly for the reason that I expected or that other SAHM might love about it (I don’t know for sure what other SAHM take away from it so please no hate comments). The one thing I know is that I am grateful for my husband that he heard my cries of anxiety and unhappiness in the workplace. I am grateful that he has a financial plan in his head that allows me to do this at this time of our child’s life that is so crucial. Whether I worked or not, he would still be driving a truck for at least another three years only coming home about 1 1/2 days a week. As parents we felt the need to have one parent be more focused on the penguin inside the home and I DO realize what a blessing this is. So please don’t ever mistake my sarcasm for me taking anything for granted.

Full disclosure. I just deleted 2 more paragraphs I wrote.  My heart has quit singing and my mind has closed off the folders. There is no more for the keys to tap out today.

You can’t always win

As the penguin 🐧 and I “Raced” 🏁 to get dressed this morning, she would say “I’m going to win”! Then she saw me with my shirt 👚 half on putting on deodorant and said “NO CHEATING!”. I asked, “putting on deodorant is cheating?” “Yes!” She says. I replied in my usual dark and twisty mother of the year way, “you need to learn how to loose” 🤦‍♀️ 

The penguin replied, “oh I know how to loose”

“Do tell me your story of loosing that Lifetime will make a movie 🎥 about ”

“Loosing means you don’t win. You can’t always win”…

Well, there you go….

The Penguin tells me why I’m not a cool kid

Well, you know that I care nothing about being a cool kid. Never did, never will. I definitely don’t tell the Penguin about being cool, except for in the sarcastic way this conversation went this morning. But, it is alarming how even at age six she has some understanding of  cool vs. uncool.

We were discussing the pop socket I have on the back of my phone. You know, that really stupid gadget that is making someone a fortune because it is the latest thing to have. I guess I fall prey to propaganda, and I love gadgets! 

Penguin: I like this on the back of your phone. What is it?

Southern Belle: It’s called a pop socket, its what all the cool kids have (sarcasm oozing)

P: Ms. Sarah and Ms. Summer have one of those on their phone, but it doesn’t look like yours.

SB: Okay

P: Mama, you can’t be a cool kid (looking up at me like the emoji SMH should be above her head)

SB: Why not? (Very indignant, yet humorous)

P: Because you don’t wear a hat, cool kids wear hats

SB: Uh? Cool kids wear hats?

P: Yes, daddy can be a cool kid because he wears a hat

SB: Where did you learn this rule?

P: Dylan, he says cool kids wear hats. Sometimes they even wear them backwards 

Now, I’m the one with the face palm emoji above my head.


The dust never settles

I guess I’ve gotten somewhat used to change in the last three years. Maybe I’m better at it at times than others. The schedule changes. The last minute “I won’t be home until tomorrow ” changes. Maybe I have just accepted not to expect or rely on anything constant. So, maybe I haven’t adjusted to change, I’ve just accepted there is nothing to rely on.

Yes, here I am. The cynical, smart ass Southern Belle you came to love. I have tried to hide that too. The cynicism. But, sometimes it proves to be too much and it overflows. 

The dust is stirred up on our dirt road as he drives in off the road. But, thinking about what we do with the short time he is home….

I don’t think the dust has settled from the trip down the dirt road home when it’s time to drive away again.

Miss Lauren, the Aggravated

This is my penguin’s pre-k teacher. She is the BEST. What a wonderful response to a difficult day……with 5 year olds 🙂

Miss Lauren, Pre-K Teacher


“Please lay down.”

“Please stop touching that.”

“Please just wash your hands and stop playing in the water.”

“Keep you hands to yourself, honey.”

“Stay in line, darling.”

“You have 5 seconds to move away from that table.”

“We don’t say potty words, kids!”

“We don’t do that, guys.”

“Let’s chill it out a bit, dudes.”

“Please don’t talk during nap time.”

“No, seriously. Please don’t talk during nap time.”


I have repeated these phrases so much today that I’m going to outlaw them from my vocabulary. I’m so tired of hearing myself say them, honestly. Surely, the kids that hear them are tired of them too. Oh, wait, that’s not true, because they would actually have to be listening to hear them! Why are they all deaf?! What’s the deal with them today!? Where are my angels and who is responsible…

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The SB guide to those 5 things…


A friend shared a blog post from Money Saving Mom titled 5Things You should Do Every Single Day-Even when life is Stressful. I read with an open mind, but I still ended up on the floor laughing. Please understand, I AM NOT MAKING FUN OF THE WRITER or her ideas!!! I simply find them hilariously funny when trying to apply them to my real, every day life. 

I also understand that there are some people who live real lives that follow these, my mother is one. I just can’t seem to find the sanity to fit these 5 mundane things into my already over stretched day. I have enough trouble making sure everyone is fed to worry about some of this other stuff. 

So here it goes. My take on the  5 Things You should do every single day…. 

1. Write a Short to do list

I suggest no more than 5-7 items on your to-do list each day, otherwise, you’re probably setting yourself up for defeat and frustration.

Yeah, um, so the small OCD tendencies that I have left screaming to be let out really do like this one. But, the borderline crazy, hanging on by a thread person that’s taken over is laughing. My to do list consist of work, pick up penguin, sleep, work. If I’m lucky a load of laundry may get done but that isn’t because I don’t right it down. 

2. Make your bed 

Truth be told, this is something I’m still working on myself. However, I’ve been much more committed to making this a priority after watching this video. (Yes, go watch it. I’ll wait for you!)

Honestly, I didn’t watch the video, so I may be missing out on an earth shattering reason as to why I should. Truth be told I like a good ole made up bed. However, it’s not practical. The penguin sleeps in the bed until I pick her up asleep at 5:00 am to take her to the car. So, waking my 5 year old to make a bed is not an option.

3. Get Dressed in Something That Makes You Feel Great

Working at a prison on a medical floor makes this difficult too. Scrubs, scrubs, and more scrubs. But, on a positive note I have started to assecorize my eyeglasses. The weekends I make an effort but I can’t think straight and I just want to get out of the house. Plus I am making sure the penguin isn’t dressing in 5 layers. This one I am working on.

4. Do one Load of Laundry From Start to Finish

This one I actually do. When it’s just me and the penguin. Then my husband comes home with his eleven days worth and it creates a huge problem. Then the problem becomes one that I don’t want to deal with. So this one is more stubbornness then anything. 

5. Keep your kitchen clean

I can do this by not cooking! And we eat oatmeal, cereal, yogurt. We rinse out our cups or use disposable. But then of course the husband comes homes and starts competing for the Next Top Chef and all hell breaks loose. 

So, it’s mostly true. Even for someone as crazy as me that that’s 5 things can be done. Maybe not to the perfection the author suggest, but to the level your comfortable with.