Tuesday, September 07, 2010
I have always been fascinated by the human body for as long as I can remember. I can recall being a small child, and even before I could read, sitting and pouring over my mother's medical journals looking at the pictures on each page. It is probably why I majored in Psychology and later on became a nurse. I just had to know what made us tick...and what I could do to keep on ticking! We all know by now how many calories we must burn to lose a pound of fat, how to ease the burn of a strained muscle and how to cut the unnecessary fat from our diets, but did you know that:
- The strongest muscle in the body is the tongue. It is the only muscle in our body that is not attached at both ends. Also, every individual has a unique tongue print just like we have unique finger prints.
- The average human will eat on average 8 spiders while sleeping.
- The average woman consumes 6 pounds of lipstick in her lifetime.
- The human brain weighs about 3 pounds. The human head weighs 8 pounds.
- You blink over 10,000,000 times a year. Women blink twice as many times as a man.
- When you sneeze, all bodily functions stop...even your heart. It's impossible to truly sneeze with your eyes open.
- If you yelled for 8 years, 7 months and six days you would have produced enough sound energy to heat one cup of coffee.
- Americans on average eat 18 acres of pizza in a DAY.
- If you passed gas consistently for 6 years and 9 months, enough gas is produced to create the energy of an atomic bomb.
- On average a human will spend up to 2 weeks kissing in his or her lifetime. A one-minute kiss burns 26 calories. Maybe we should kiss more often?
- Your left lung is smaller than your right lung to make room for the heart. Yet the surface area of the human lung is equal to that of a tennis court.
- The higher your IQ, the more you dream. And in color.
- The typical human body contains enough sulfur to kill all fleas on an average dog.
- We are born with 300 bones. Yet, by the time we reach adulthood, we have 206 bones. Babies are also born without knee caps.
- The average human body sheds around 600,000 particles of skin every hour; that is about 1.5 pounds a year. By age 70, you will have lost 105 pounds of skin. Ever wonder where it goes?
- The average adult's empty stomach has the volume of 1/5 of a cup. When stuffed with food the volume can reach a little over a gallon.
- During your lifetime, you will produce enough saliva to fill two swimming pools. And did you know that if your saliva cannot dissolve something, then you cannot taste it?
- The three things pregnant women dream most of during their first trimester are frogs, worms and potted plants.
- After eating too much, your hearing is less sharp.
- Your body has enough iron in it to make a 3-inch long nail.
- The indentation in the middle of the area between the nose and the upper lip is called the philtrum. Didn't know it had a name, did ya?
- Facial hair grows faster than any other hair on the body. Pfff! Tell that to the hair on my legs!
- The acid in your stomach is strong enough to dissolve razorblades. You get a new stomach lining every three to four days. If you didn't, it would digest itself.
- It takes 72 muscles to produce human speech.
I bet you didn't know you were that complicated, did you?
Saturday, September 04, 2010
I was at Walmart last night and they are remodeling the store. They have the snack cakes by the bras and underwear and the shoes next to the vaccuum cleaners. I really hope this is only temporary. Or it could be a good thing! If you're thinking about buying the snack cakes, maybe it will make you think how you're going to look a few days later IN that bra. Maybe it's a psychological tool that Walmart is using to help us get fit. The shoes next to the vaccuum cleaners could be a subtle reminder for us to get moving. No? Anyhooo, it sure was a pain in the bum trying to find the coffee filters. They were over in Aisle Four next to the Depends. Even THAT seems fitting in my warped eccentric little mind.
I was pushing the cart over to the produce when one of the wheels got stuck on something on the floor and it discontinued turning. I pulled it backwards, tried again to push it forward; alas, it got hung up again. It was impossible to be inconspicuous because each time I tried it would scream, "Buh-GGGRRRRRRRRR!" An older lady who was next to me gave me a dirty look and slammed her fish sticks into her cart, sighing heavily before squeaking away.
I didn't like her. I didn't like her at all.
And don't ask me HOW THIS happened, but as I was about to leave the aisle, this little kid, about seven years, careened his body into my cart. He was running at break-neck speed and ended up halfway into it, screaming, "OW! MOMMY! MOMMMMMEEEEE!" Quickly looking around for any witnesses, I helped him get back on his feet and said, "You shouldn't be running, little one, you could get hurt!" Rubbing his eyes, he screeched, "I DID get hurt, lady!" Apologizing, as I patted his back, he jerked viciously away from me. Laughing, he said, "I"m going to tell my MOM that you hit me!" and ran off. I hurriedly ran the other direction and got lost in the maze of the mismatched aisles. I watched my back the entire time I was there. I didn't like that kid either.
When I finally got home I texted Breanna and told her how much I missed her. I said, "You should have been with me at Walmart!" She said, "Walmart? WHO needs Walmart! There's a MACY'S here! AND an Elder-Beermans! And I GOT A JOB!!" Yep! She's a working girl now! She is taking on 20 hours a week at the dining hall on campus. It's enough to get her some pocket change and to supplement what we give her. She seemed so.....GROWN UP. I asked her if she needed anything and she replied, "No, Mom, I'm doing fine." WHAT?! Huh?! Hmmm, unlike the little boy who needed HIS mother because he got beat up a little bit, she was facing life head on. She didn't need to scream, "OW! Mom!" She was doing....fine.
Isn't that what I wanted to hear? Did I WANT her to say, "I need you! Can you come?" A small part of me wanted an excuse to go and "HELP" her with something, with anything. But, no, Mom, she is doing fine. NOW whatchya gonna do?
Well, I know ONE thing. I'm "steering" clear of Walmart for awhile. Just until they get the mess, carts, old ladies and the little narks cleaned up. And I will be happy that my little girl is taking the bull by the horns and going for it. Looks like the tables have turned and she's setting the example for me now, huh?
Friday, September 03, 2010
Yes, I'm a freaking mess after dropping Breanna off at college yesterday, but I'm actually better than what I thought I would be. I'm not eating paint chips, combing my cat for hours or eating cake icing straight from the container with my fingers. I actually got up this morning, took a walk, did some light housecleaning and talked to my other son who lives in Arizona for awhile. He, my daughter-in-law and my two grandgirls are going to San Diego for a week of R & R. So, I'm doing okay. Better than what I actually thought I would be doing a few days ago. Yes, I bawled, watched three epidodes of "Dexter" back-to-back and ate several cookies last night. I even slept in Breanna's bed, falling asleep to the sound of her wallclock tick-tick-ticking in the dark.
But I'm okay.
For now, anyways. Now, I'm just wondering about the rest of my life. Should I consider going back to school myself? Should I take some classes that I think would interest me? OR should I do something that I've always wanted to do (like hang glide...my friend has a hang gliding set-up and he has offered to take me on a trial run)? Stop rubbing your eyes, you heard me. Hang glide. Or parachute! The OU campus has it's own airport strip that offers parachuting services to its students. I will be inquiring if this is also available for the parents OF the students. Breanna has already told me SHE would parachute when pigs fly. And with raised eyebrow and a hand on her hips has questioned my sanity for even suggesting it. I AM crazy. But my insanity has been what has kept me sane my entire life. Why stop now? Why limit myself, why not open myself up to all possibilities that this life has to offer? I'm only 41...wait...yeah, I had to do a mental calculation...and I'm not ready to hang it up yet. But I am ready to let it all hang out, so to speak.
But maybe in a few weeks I'll start taking the knocking on my heart more seriously. Right now, I just need to fight the swelling of my heart that hits me while I'm dusting her dresser or finding mismatched socks under her bed. Her keyboard has her fingerprints on the keys and her stereo was still on, volume turned down to her favorite music station. I even found several letters I had written her over the years, carefully folded and placed in her desk drawer. She kept them ALL. I have to smile and fight the tears because I've kept each of hers, too. The ones from camp, the ones she would write while I was at work when she was ten-years-old ("Mom, I wish you were here...Paul and Dad are being mean because they said it was MY turn to do the dishes. I don't like doing dishes. They are gross. And the dishes are gross, too.")
Right now I just want to be here in case she calls home.
Tuesday, August 31, 2010
A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling.
It seemed as one problem was solved, a new one arose.
Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Soon the pots came to boil. In the first she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs, and in the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil, without saying a word.
In about twenty minutes, she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl. Turning to her daughter, she asked, “Tell me what you see.”
“Carrots, eggs, and coffee,” she replied.
Her mother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft. The mother then asked the daughter to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg. Finally, the mother asked the daughter to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted its richness and savored its aroma.
The daughter then asked, “What does it mean, mother?”
Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity - boiling water. Each reacted differently.
The carrot went in strong, hard, and unrelenting. However, after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior, but after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened. The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water, they had changed the water.
“Which are you?” she asked her daughter. “When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?”
Which are you? Are you the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity, do you wilt and become soft and lose your strength?
Are you the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Did you have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a breakup, a financial hardship or some other trial, have you become hardened and stiff? Does your shell look the same, but on the inside are you bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and hardened heart?
Or are you like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor. If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get even better and change the situation around you.
When the hour is the darkest and trials are their greatest, do you elevate yourself to another level? How do you handle adversity? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?
May you have enough happiness to make you sweet, enough trials to make you strong, enough sorrow to keep you human and enough hope to make you happy.
The happiest of people don’t necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the most of everything that comes along their way. The brightest future will always be based on a forgotten past; you can’t go forward in life until you let go of your past failures and heartaches.
When you were born, you were crying and everyone around you was smiling. Live your life so at the end, you’re the one who is smiling and everyone around you is crying.
(However, I would much prefer it if everyone was smiling WITH me.)
Monday, August 30, 2010
I was thinking...when I was a kid I gave my Mom a pretty hard time. I wasn't a MEAN kid, but I always seemed to find ways to make her want to pull her hair out. I'm not assuming that she wanted to, she TOLD me, on several occasions, "You make me wanna pull my hair out, girl." When I asked her, "Why?" she would just shake her finger at me and say, "I hope you have ten kids just like you one day." Cool, I thought, if they're just like me, just think of all the fun I'll have!
When I was six-years-old she caught me with the scissors cutting all of the hair off our Pekingnese. I wanted to give him hair just like Jeremy Harliss, the cute boy, in my first grade class. Two weeks later, I got into trouble cutting the hair off Jeremy Harliss in the cloak room. I wanted to make him look my Pekingnese. Not long after that, I got into trouble for kissing Jeremy Harliss in the cloak room. That boy was just bad news.
Then there was the joint in high school. A boy I had a crush on gave me one and told me to smoke it when everyone went to bed. At 1:30 in the morning, when I THOUGHT my mother was sound asleep, I snuck out the back door and lit it up. Gagging, I muffled my coughs and was just thinking, "What's the freaking big deal??" when I heard her clear her throat. Spinning around, I saw her standing there in her bathrobe and her neon blue curlers glistening, taunting, in the moonlight. I managed to get out, "UH-OH..." before the resounding slap. For the next two days my friends asked me why I was taking so long to sit down.
I ran away with my boyfriend when I was fifteen years old. We didn't get far. It doesn't pay off when your mother knows the sheriff and two deputies in a small town. They found us at McDonald's two hours later cooling off before we were to head over to the skating rink. The ride home in the back of the cruiser was not fun because Sheriff Petrie kept saying, "Ooo, you're in for it now. MOMMA is TICKED!"
I married my first husband while I was in college. We lived two and half hours away and I called home and told her the "wonderful" news. I don't think that was a day she wanted to pull her hair out. That was the day she wanted to MURDER me. Two days later she showed up at my apartment with a set of pots. In true "Mom" fashion, she gave him a hug and told him welcome to the family...and she was bringing my three older brothers with her the next time.
From hiding under my dad's '57 Chevy while everyone looked for me, to running off for hours in the grapefield's of a nearby winery, I was always exploring, trying new things. I wasn't afraid of anything and that's what always scared my mom the most. I seemed to always find ways of exasperating this dear soul who had already raised five children. Her sister was my biological mom. Her sister had financial and emotional problems and I came along when she should have been enjoying her freedom years. But even when I pushed MY oldest sister into the creek and threw her fishing pole in after her (she deserved it...she called me a buck-toothed hyenna), she still loved me. And when I took the dare during "Truth and Dare" to run out in the street in nothing but my bra and underwear when I was fourteen, she calmly told the neighbors that I was just a kid, to lighten up, she still loved me. She whooped me that day...again...but she still loved me!
I was lucky with my baby girl. She never gave me heart palpitations or made me worry (well, so FAR). I don't know how I managed to get a gem like her. No, Mom, I didn't have ten kids just like me. Now, I don't think it would have been any fun. I can't help but wonder, though, if Mom is up in God's house looking down and saying, "Well, kiddo, it looks like you did pretty good." I hope so anyways.
Yeah, I'm really glad that Breanna isn't a hooligan...like I USED to be!
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