I want you all to know that I am only writing this blog to maintain a sense of normalcy despite the fact that I am headed in the direction of a psychological tailspin.  Technically, I may already be in the tailspin, but let’s not get bogged down in semantics.  Not yet, anyway.  It’s only the first paragraph.

To clarify a couple things from my last (short) post, it is not my autistic children who are crapping their pants, so I don’t need any advice on that front.  The autistic children appear to have their bowels under control, more or less.  Give credit where credit is due.  No, it’s my neurotypical children who have the poop issues.  To be fair, Mister Bubby has not crapped his pants since he was eight years old.  A freaking medal is probably overdue.  Unfortunately, Girlfriend appears to be following in his (former) footsteps, despite the fact that she was using the toilet in very appropriate ways up until a few months ago.  It is very frustrating.  (Thought this paragraph needed a gratuitous sentence, but I’m a little tired this morning, so I just threw that one together at the last minute.)

It may be some Freudian no-brainer that my NT kids are acting out fecally in order to get attention, which has been focused a little too laser-beamy on their autistic siblings.  I may have bought that argument with Mister Bubby, a relatively low-maintenance kid who was (and is) sandwiched between two high-maintenance kids.  But I don’t really buy it with Girlfriend, who is the baby and gets all kinds of attention.  Except when her mother’s too busy writing blog posts because she needs to distract herself from how empty her overfull life has become.  Shall we change the subject?  I’ll buy that.

As some of you may recall, I decided over the summer to stop fighting my naturally curly hair and embrace its naturally curly ways.  I have been wearing it “natural” in all its schizophrenic glory since June 20.  Yes, it is a day I shall always remember, ladies and gentlemen.  It has changed my life.  I no longer have a fixed set of expectations for my hair.  I am letting it discover itself.  It is like the hair version of unschooling, only I don’t have to worry about what happens when it tries to go to college (because as it happens, my hair has already been to college—but that’s another story).

Lately I have been using the DevaCurl products on my hair.  I like them, but recently I ordered a 32-oz. bottle of their One Condition Daily Cleansing Conditioner—not to be confused with their “No-Poo” Conditioning Cleanser, which I use once or twice a week—and I have had a bit of trouble with it.  The conditioner itself is fine.  I had a 15-oz. (or whatever) bottle of it, and I was just replacing it with the larger size.  I ordered it off Amazon, and I happened to note that it got a poor review from someone who liked the conditioner fine but was very upset about the fact that the 32-oz. came without a cap but a pump, and the pump didn’t work.

At the time I thought, “Well, that’s too bad.  She got a defective pump.”  Pumps are notorious for sometimes being defective.  I know this—knew it—but did I let it bother me?  No.  I didn’t give it a second’s thought beyond, “What are the chances of me also getting a defective pump?  I’m going to live dangerously!”  Because that’s what we Curly Girls do, amigos—we are notoriously wild and crazy!*  So I ordered the 32-oz. bottle, and it did indeed come with a pump, and when I went to open up the pump so I could engage it (and by extension, the conditioner), I was faced with a great deal of opposition.  First, there was the shrink-wrap surrounding the pump so that it wouldn’t make a mess should there be some leakage during shipping.  There was no leakage, of course.  There was also no apparent way of removing this shrink-wrap without power tools.  Seriously, Manufacturing, what is up with the shrink-wrap these days?  I know I’m getting old and feeble, but remember the days when a sharp fingernail could puncture just about anything packaging could put up against us?  No more!  It’s box-cutters or a lifetime of never knowing what’s inside.

Anyway.  I finally managed to get the shrink-wrap off.  Most of it, anyway—the most obstructive parts.  And THEN—I will give you three guesses as to what happened next, gentle readers, and the first two don’t count.  OF COURSE the pump didn’t work.  I mean, it might have worked, if I could have gotten it to open up.  It was closed, of course, because that’s how you ship bottles with pumps—with the pumps closed.  You know what I’m talking about, right?  It’s closed, and you have to twist it open to enable the pumping action.  If you have a liquid hand soap dispenser, you have done this before.  If you still use bar soap, I can’t explain myself further.  Also:  let’s talk in a future blog post about soap.  But I digress.  No, the pump wouldn’t twist at all, and not just because my hands and the bottle were all conditiony and greasy.  I rectified that situation, and it still wouldn’t open.

To be fair, I did not try pliers.  And that’s only because I do not keep any pliers in my bathroom, and at the time the water was already hot and I was already naked, and I didn’t feel like getting un-naked so I could walk downstairs, past my double-front-doors-that-are-half-windows-and-not-frosted-windows-either-but-genuine-fishbowl-window-action, so that I could go to the garage and fetch the pliers.  And I have not thought to go looking for the pliers since then, because—if you haven’t been able to read between the lines here—I have had a few other things on my mind lately.  So in the meantime I have managed to unscrew the entire pump-lid so that I can access the conditioner, and I sort of use the pump as a dipstick-applicator.  Which sounds sexy, almost, except that it isn’t, it’s just sort of a pain in the neck, but that’s all I’ve got until I start keeping pliers in the bathroom or it’s time to get another 32-oz. bottle of No-Poo, which also has a pump, but which pump works just fine and can theoretically take the place of my non-functional One Condition pump…unless, of course, the future No-Poo bottle also has a non-functional pump, in which case I should really get on acquiring a full set of tools for the shower.  But not today, I’m tired.

Tired despite the fact that I have taken my shower this morning, and lately I have been doing a cold rinse on my hair because it’s supposed to help with the conditioning properties of the cleansing conditioners, or something.  It was perfectly fine during the summer, but I have been wondering how it will work for me when the weather starts getting colder.  I really don’t like running any part of my body, even the technically-not-alive parts, under cold water when the weather is already cold.  And in fact, as of yesterday, the weather is starting to cool down considerably, and this cold-water rinse, as good as it is for my hair, may not be sustainable.  May not be.  Unlike Social Security, which is definitely unsustainable.

Ha!  I just sneaked that political tidbit in there to see if you were paying attention.  Did I scare you?  I’m sorry.  It’s just that I’ve been trying really hard—but it’s been difficult—to keep up with all the GOP debates, in an effort to keep myself relevant, even though I have not managed to muster up any enthusiasm for the 2012 election.  All the people I wanted to run decided not to run, and now all that’s left is, you know, these guys.  I hope Michele Bachmann doesn’t mind being referred to as a “guy.”  I’m just trying to treat her equally.  Actually, I just think “guys and gal” sounds stupid.  And “gal” seems more demeaning than “guy,” to me, anyway.

Speaking of Michele Bachmann, she seems to be imploding, doesn’t she?  I knew she was screwed the minute Gov. Perry entered the race.  He calls her evangelical Christianity + Tea Party and raises her a Y-chromosome (not to mention that folksy Texas charm!)—sorry, honey.  I never leaned her direction in the first place, but I’m a bit disappointed that she hasn’t conducted herself with more dignity in her demise (presidential-candidate-ly speaking—I’m sure her job in Congress is still safe).  The whole Gardasil thing just smacks of desperation.  I myself don’t have issues with Gardasil, but I understand people having issues with the government mandate—because legitimate issues often accompany government mandates, not because I buy the argument that immunizing against HPV sends a message to girls that it’s okay to be promiscuous.  That’s just silly.  Number one—how many kids have any clue what they’re getting shots for, ever?  And number two—“Well, I was afraid of genital warts, but now that there’s only pregnancy, AIDS, chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, and the fact my boyfriend may only be using me—LET’S PARTY!”  Does that seem reasonable to you?  I need to ask your opinion on evolution, too?  Do you wear shoes inside your house?  Let’s sit down and do some math—maybe that will clear things up.

Well, now I’ve exhausted my discretionary time for the morning, and it’s time to get serious about getting Girlfriend ready for school.  Gentle readers, adieu.

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* In the Curly Girl handbook, there is an anecdote about this lady who gets asked by a gentleman if she is a Democrat, and she says yes, and the gentleman says, “I knew it.  Republican women don’t wear their hair this way.”  He meant it as a compliment, but shows what he knows.  He hasn’t seen Republican Women Gone Wild!

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