Slice Of Heaven

Phenomenal sunny, warm weather.

Shopping!  I got a $72 purple suit jacket for less than $14.  Score!

Raking the yard.

Filing taxes. (Ok, maybe not that one so much…)

Walking to the convenience store for a popsicle.

Sitting in lawn chairs people watching after homemade pizza.

The Academy Awards…  Wasn’t Kirk Douglas’ presentation just the sweetest??

Le sigh.  What a great weekend.

Hospital Saga Part Deux

Last time we visited the hospital saga, I was seeing a surgeon who was ordering tests and medication for a different problem.  Those test results came back completely fine and the medicine was horrible.  Shocker…I know.  She referred me a specialist at the military hospital who was new and hadn’t been around when I first started this whole ordeal.  I met with him right about the time DH was getting home last fall.  He had another, new diagnosis and ordered more tests.

I didn’t make those test because I went all preggo.  I figured that this whole hospital saga was just going to fade away because I certainly wasn’t going to go back to my PCM to get another referral just to see the guy again and tell him to reorder the tests when I didn’t believe in the tests to start with.  Turns out he’s not even around anymore, so I’m glad I didn’t pursue it then.

Fast forward to February.  I get a phone call to remind me of my six month follow up to my original specialist.  I had totally forgotten.  I almost canceled, but then I figured what the hey.  It’s hard enough to get appointments through this system, so I went.  I saw my doc’s PA.  I told her nothing had changed and gave her a quick sum up of the run around I’d gone through at the military hospital.  We chatted and then she said she was going to confer with my doc.

He’s back by the way, and looking as dashing as ever.  Anyhoo…the PA brought him in and we talked for awhile about how some doctors only look at numbers and see that I’m supposed to be fine while others like him see that even though the numbers say one thing, something’s not right.  Then he said he knew a guy that saw things the same way he did and whipped out his phone.  The conversation sounded something like “Hey Mike, I got a lady here who needs surgery.  Yeah?  Alright, I’ll let her know.  Wanna do lunch?”  (Seriously, this guy was making lunch plans during my appointment!)  He got off the phone and said he’ll see me in two days.  My jaw dropped to the floor.

So, skipping ahead, I’m scheduled to surgery in less than 30 days.  I don’t even know how I lost control of this whole process, but I clearly did.  I’m happy because I didn’t think we’d ever get to this point.  Finally I might see some relief.  But therein lies the problem.  Might.  This whole thing might not take away any of my pain.  Either way, I’m looking as some very big, rain-on-my-parade side effects from this surgery for the rest of my life.  I’m very worried that I’m going into something life changing at a very young age and am only shifting problem to something new.  What’s the point then?  Everyone seems to agree that at least it’s worth a shot.  I tend to go with that too, but it’s still huge.  Overweight hippo sitting on my chest huge and the clock is quickly ticking down.

Not A Typical Valentine’s Day Rant

Perhaps this is ill timed, but I’ve been working on this for a few days and it just happened to get finished on Valentine’s Day. But I rant because a I’m passionate about my marriage, totally in love with my hubs, and hope that everybody gets so lucky as to find their own bliss.

I’m a huge Food Network fan, and I spend an obscene amount of time listening to it while I’m at home. Giada de Laurentiis has numerous shows now. Everyday Italian is one, and Giada At Home is another. Both are way too fancy for me to attempt, but it all still looks delicious and I catch her shows every now and then.

Anyway, Giada is interviewed in the February edition of Redbook magazine. Part of the interview is her advice for having a successful relationship since she’s been with her husband since 1989. She is quoted as saying:

All men want to be treated like kings in a relationship, and I think if women don’t indulge that sometimes, their men are likely to stray and look for someone who can give that to them.

She also says she tries to be the woman her husband fell in love with twenty years ago, but that isn’t being passed around as much as this quote. Both are receiving harsh criticism around the web.

I wonder how much of the backlash is because Giada is absolutely stunning. She was also born in Rome, so some traditional Italian family values have to be poking up here. But, like most comments in the press, it is chopped and distorted out of context.

But what’s the difference? Are her comments really that bad? I’m certainly not a raging feminist, but I think it’s a majority consensus now that women are perfectly capable of having careers and families and the best marriages attempt to create an equal partnership. Even in this nomadic military lifestyle it was a foregone conclusion that I would work and have my own career. I don’t see Giada’s comments as going against that at all. She travels a ton for her job and works a lot of hours. What’s so bad about coming home and throwing herself just as hard at being a wife and mother?

I wouldn’t place all the blame on women if their husbands cheat—you both gotta want to be there working at your marriage—but I think she has somewhat of a point. It’s not a crime to want to feel special and loved and needed, and that’s a big thing you provide for the other person in a relationship. If you treat your spouse like their any ol’ person you’d meet during your day, you’re not doing a good job of that.

Perhaps my views aren’t popular, and I’m sure I sound like ridiculously conservative 1950s perfect wifey, but I can’t stand to hear all the negative press out there about Giada’s comments. It’s so discouraging to see how such views aren’t tolerated because they seem outdated and unfair to women. When did we get so politically correct and focused on extreme gender equality that it’s a bad and shocking thing to say that you enjoy and try to dote on your spouse? I truly believe that everyone has to find their own specific formula for a successful relationship. Yes, I really, really enjoy making my husband’s lunch for work every day. I get a lot of crap for it at my job though—like I’m trying to be Miss Perfect Betty Crocker. I just like knowing that he’s eating healthy, we’re saving money, and that he thinks of me when he takes his lunch at noon. It’s something small I can do for him that brightens his day. If you try your hardest to do things like this for your husband, and hopefully you’re with someone who is also trying their hardest to do things like this for you, it will all balance out. Isn’t that the point?

Cruel And Unusual Punishment

If you didn’t know already, February is Black History Month, and the librarians at work decided to do a display.  This year has a theme (I didn’t know it was a themed event in the past, but anywhoo…) of the Civil War I’m assuming because of the sesquicentennial (150 yrs, people).

One of the librarians had a Civil War uniform, belt, and ammo pouch, which she kept calling his purse, that she was going to display along with the books she had pulled.

She pulled the FOLDED uniform out of a CARDBOARD BOX.  The leather belt and ammo pouch came out from UNDERNEATH a mannequin.  I could not believe what I was seeing.  Her and another librarian decided to put it in full view of the  WALL OF WINDOWS and SLIDING DOOR.  And it’s freaking raining!!

It hurt to see these objects treated like that.  They were putting the hats ON THEIR OWN HEADS after taking them out of ordinary PLASTIC shopping bags.  There were no padded hangers.  There were no cotton gloves.  There wasn’t acid free tissue or acid free boxes anywhere.  It was a horrible, horrible sight.

They put the uniform on the mannequin and attempted to put the belt on as well.  It was too big for the mannequin (as they usually are), so they tried to ADJUST IT!  That’s like the quickest way to rip and destroy fragile leather, which looses its suppleness as it ages and dries out.  When that didn’t work, THEY TOOK TAPE AND TAPED IT TO THE UNIFORM instead of padding the mannequin out to support the belt!!!

I got up and walked away.  I couldn’t watch them destroy those pieces.  It turns out the items were loaned from a local museum.  I was shocked.  Either the museum has no funding or no professional staff with any shred of professional ethics/common sense, but I couldn’t be there to find out.  I’m scarred for life.

Can I Be Professionally Saved and Shaken At The Same Time?

I recently finished reading one of the best books I’ve read in a long time. Finders Keepers by Craig Childs is an essay about Childs’ views on archeology and how historical artifacts are altered as they change hands after they are dug up. It was extremely enlightening and well written. I could hardly put it down, and at times I was aghast at the atrocities that are being committed against histories that don’t belong to us.

Childs believes firmly that an object’s identity and historical significance is deeply rooted in its location. For example, he refers often to how many objects that are buried were intentionally buried as part of grave sites since many previous cultures buried their dead with things that would help them in the afterlife. Those graves still exist, and taking those objects is disturbing a grave and the memory of the human that lies there. The object loses a lot, if not all, of its meaning and context by taking it away from the location and into someone else’s possession. Even museums, which seek to tell a story of the past, are using the object out of context and change its meaning by saving it. For Childs, meaning is closely tied to worth. A pot or arrowhead or string of beads is most valuable when it is still in the ground where it was placed rather than preserved and cataloged for science and the historical record.

I am very torn by Child’s ideas. On one hand, I agree with him wholeheartedly. What value is there in scientifically determining the mineral composition of 500 year old pottery? What does it matter the migration patterns of ancient peoples? Yes, it is interesting to know, but I don’t necessarily see how that knowledge will take us forward as a civilization. We aren’t going to figure out how the Greeks smelted their swords a thousand years ago and gain some vital piece of knowledge that will improve our current metallurgy methods. Is that arguably trivial knowledge worth disturbing people who were lovingly laid to rest?

On the other hand, I’m a student of history and I want to work in the historical field in museums researching and telling the stories of cultures long gone. I do believe that learning about the past can teach us much about the future. Child’s book makes me doubt if I can do that on good conscience however. He does eventually concede that if things must be removed from the earth, that museums are the best place to keep them. Well, obviously. It’s hard to argue against that. These things will be taken by looters for personal collections whether museums are involved or not. It is best to at least attempt to preserve some items in a climate-controlled environment. It’s how the stories behind the items are told that we can control.

In the end, I learned a lot from Child’s book and I think I will go forward into history (what an odd concept) with a more cautious attitude. Museums are often likened to icebergs. Only a very small percentage of their collections ever make it out for the public to see. Museums are fighting for space to store the abundance of items and fighting even harder for money to take care of it. This job would be much easier if they saved only a few examples and left the rest to remain untouched.

Secrets

I must confess I sent a secret in to the PostSecret project.  I’m panicking because when I checked the blog this morning, it’s up for the whole world to see.

I’m not sure I’m ready for this.  I’ve never announced something to the whole world before I’ve even told my husband.  For some reason, I’m more nervous to tell him about it now that’s it’s up on the internet than I was when it was private.

I hope people are kind.