If My Life Were a Children’s Book.

Friday

If you want to get a haircut, you ask your Mother-In-Law to come watch the kids.

If your Mother-in-Law comes to watch the kids, your youngest is sure to ham it up and play especially sick.

If your youngest hams it up and plays especially sick, she will tell you he didn’t get off the couch all morning.

If she tells you he didn’t get off the couch all morning, you will take his temperature and decide he needs to go to the doctor – before the weekend.

If you decide he needs to go to the doctor, you will take him in – despite the impending “Wintry Mix” and possible ice storms.

If you take him in, he will miraculously become healed in the Sick Waiting Room.

If he miraculously becomes healed in the Sick Waiting Room, he will have to touch, rub, and become one with all the surfaces.

If he becomes one with all the surfaces, you will become very anxious.

If you become very anxious, he will become further energized by your anxiety.

If he becomes further energized by your anxiety, he will begin jumping and screaming maniacally.

Jumping at doctor's office while

If he begins jumping and screaming maniacally, he will attract the attention of the other children in the Sick Waiting Room.

If he attracts the attention of the other children in the Sick Waiting Room, they will begin to play together.

If they begin to play together, your anxiety will triple.

If your anxiety triples, they will amp up their game to running around a column while rubbing their hands, cheeks, and possibly tongues around it like they were seeing how many germs it takes to reach the center of a column.

If they amp up their game to seeing how many germs it takes to reach the center of a column, you will begin listening to their Grandmother’s phone call to try and ascertain what they’re in for.

If you try and ascertain what they’re in for, you will learn that their sister is currently being observed to see if she needs to go back to the hospital for her raging and incurable stomach virus.

If you learn that their sister is currently being observed to see if she needs to go back to the hospital for her raging and incurable stomach virus, your anxiety will give you a facial tic so extreme that the kids in the Well Waiting Room will think you’re winking at them.

If you get facial tic so extreme that the kids in the Well Waiting Room think you’re winking at them, you will try to mitigate the future germ damage to your household by restraining your toddler.

If you try to mitigate the future germ damage to your household by restraining your toddler, his wiggling and fighting will make the seconds tick by so slowly that you are convinced the best course of action for your ongoing sanity is to get up and leave.

If you become convinced the best course of action for your ongoing sanity is to get up and leave, right before you do, you will get called back (after one hour and fifteen minutes of Sick Waiting Room Seventh Layer of Hell.)

If you finally get called back, you will, in a fit of anxiety-induced-word-vomit, tell your doctor of all of your trials in the waiting room.

If you tell your doctor of all of your trials in the waiting room, you will follow up by asking her if she happens to have any dissolvable anxiety pills on her.

If you follow up by asking her if she happens to have any dissolvable anxiety pills on her, your toddler will once again be energized by your admittance of the A word, and will yell, “All Aboard!!”, because, you see, he is the Train Conductor.

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If your toddler plays Train Conductor with the stirrups, you will stop to tweet the moment, during which your toddler will seize the opportunity to find a well-hidden stray cup of water left by another child.

If your toddler finds a well-hidden stray cup of water, you will nearly break your nose (again) trying to tackle him before it reaches his lips.

At this point, you will begin praying for quick and painless deaths for each of your family members, as it is clear that all of your days are severely numbered.

Later Friday

After a nap (because after that visit there was no way you were doing anything else before naptime), you go to the pharmacy to fill your son’s prescription.

If you go to the pharmacy to fill your son’s prescription, the pharmacist will sympathize with you and tell you that she, too, has been sick for a week – with a really difficult strain of strep throat – and will cough, right before she mixes your son’s antibiotic.

If she coughs into your son’s antibiotic, you will again begin praying for quick and painless deaths for all of you – and maybe a slightly painful one for her.

Saturday

Your husband has to go to the doctor and gets two shots and a prescription.

Sunday

You and your daughter fall to illness.

Tuesday, Too Late to Go To The Doctor

Your illness worsens, now including a fever.

Wednesday

Your illness most definitely needs a doctor, but the entire city is shut down for the snowstorm that you’ve wanted all year long, so you tough it out and eagerly look forward to the distraction of a beautiful, thick white snow.

If you look forward to a snow, it will not come. And you will wait for eight hours, blowing your nose on every soft disposable surface in your house, not daring to leave due to impending doom, while it rains.

If you wait for eight hours while it rains, you will watch the wall-to-wall snow news all day long in hopes of an encouraging word about when you will get snow, but all you will see are thousands of happy snowstormees who live ever-so-slightly north of you.

If you see happy snowstormees, you will become not happy. But you will still wait, while it rains.

It gets dark, and it rains.

It gets darker, and your power goes out.

Then it starts snowing.

The children will hurry out in their snow gear, eager to make snowmen and snow angels and snow cream. Meanwhile, you hold the flashlight and jog in place on the porch so as to not let your feverish chills overtake you.

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You get maybe a quarter inch of snow. That will melt by morning.

Meanwhile, you continue to be inundated by everyone else’s amazing snowstorm dreams, while your own dreams are delirious because…fever.

Thursday

If you didn’t get the snowstorm you so hoped for, you will look at the bright side – that you can finally go to the doctor.

If you finally go to the doctor, the exhaustion from the week will overcome you and you will accidentally cry.

If you accidentally cry, your doctor will offer you antidepressants.

If your doctor offers you antidepressants, you will consider asking him for dissolvable anxiety pills for the next Pediatrician’s visit, and then wonder if he could instead prescribe you a trip to Fiji

While you’re wondering if your doctor can prescribe you a trip to Fiji, one of your kids gets all cozy and places their lips near a surface, almost assuredly picking up a new germ.

If your kid picks up a new germ, the cycle starts all over again.

And by the time it’s done, it’s most likely time for you to get another haircut.

The Stages of FaceTune Guilt.

A few weeks ago, I discovered this amazing new app. I actually think Apple tempted me with it. Somehow they suggested it to me – I don’t remember where, but I do clearly remember the wording.

“Wondering how all your friend’s selfies are so amazing? This is what they’re using.”

I was intrigued, because all of my selfies make my face look like the landscape of mars, and the size of it too.

I downloaded the app, FaceTune, and was immediately overwhelmed by the auto-loading tutorials. They were intense. There was a LOT going on here.

But I slowly started playing with one setting at a time….

And there began my downward spiral into tuning my face.

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It didn’t help at all that we had family photos the next week, and I suddenly had hundreds of pictures with which to tinker.

I mean sure, I played with the kid’s eyes to make them brighter and less shadowy, but this app was really about me, not them. Their skin hasn’t yet been ruined by the ravages of sun and lack of sleep and poor skincare like mine has.

And so I played. I smoothed out my skin, erasing wrinkles and sun spots and crater-pores. I was amazed!! If only I had airbrush makeup (or a skin transplant), I could look like this every day!

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Then I erased under-eye shadows. Surely they’re just because I’m terrible at putting on mascara – it’s not what I really look like. I am just erasing my own mistakes – that’s all!

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It was so easy! Just a swipe of my finger here and there…

But FaceTune is a lot like Plastic Surgery.

A little is great.

But the longer you play, the more likely you are to turn yourself into something grotesque.

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I mean sure, I don’t have any wrinkles, but my face nearly lost all natural contours in the process. Magic always has a price.

And then there was this edit.

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Yes, my skin looks like it could be in a beauty pageant. But I also look like an American Girl Doll replica of myself. She ain’t real.

Despite my slight misgivings about my somewhat deceptive editing, I posted two of the photos as my new profile pictures on all of my social media accounts:

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And the comments began.

“You look so young!”

“I swear you’re aging backwards!”

“You look fifteen!”

“Is your hair blue?”

Aside from the last one, each pricked my conscience a little more forcefully.

I mean sure, I’ve always edited my photos (who doesn’t?), but FaceTune gave me a level of control the likes of which I’d never wielded before. And with much power comes much…facial contortion.

And so began my downward spiral of angst and conflicting emotions.

1. I should admit that objects in this photo are not as young as they appear.

2. They don’t even look like me. I mean, those photos were taken when I looked my best, so there is no way I could ever achieve the post-edit skin tone on my own.

3. But it could! If I were better at makeup! Or had my own professional airbrush cosmetics studio!

4. Okay not really .This is what I would look like if I had a proper skin care regimen AND started it twenty years ago. And maybe wasn’t prone to freckling.

5. But I could be this person if I lived entirely on the internet. Oh – I wonder if I could do that?! Then I could have all the perfect skin tone I wanted….

6. I NEED NEW MAKEUP!!

7. Oh dang. There’s another comment. I need to admit my trespasses. I have to. I’m losing all credibility. The only way to regain it is to post a no-makeup selfie.

Or not.

8. But if the photo were overexposed, my skin would look that good, too! Cameras always lie – everyone knows that!

9. And anyway. I bet all the people on the internet with perfect skin are just FaceTuned. That’s what Apple told me, didn’t they?!

10. MAKEUP. I MUST GET NEW MAKEUP.

11. Argh. The photographer just liked my photo on Facebook. He’s probably judging me for smoothing myself. HE knows what I really looked like. HE knows I’m lying through my wrinkles.

12. I wonder how you can shrink pores as big as mine?

13. FaceTune. Oh, FaceTune. Why can’t you transform my skin like you lie about my photograph? Why can’t you be a real boy?

14. If God didn’t want me to be able to smooth my skin on the internet then He wouldn’t have created FaceTune. So there.

…But He could’ve cut out the middle man and just given me flawless skin to start with…

15. Guilt. Nothing but guilt. (But not quite enough to change my profile picture.)

FaceTune should have been called Pandora’s Face. That’s all there is to it.

Things In Which You Shouldn’t Run.

Okay.

So I wear leggings as pants.

Clearly, that came as a terrible shock to many of you – at least based on the comments, the Facebook conversations, and the in-real-life justifications I’ve had to offer since making my grand admission.

So, in an effort to regain your confidence, I’d like to present you with a few “At least I don’t wear these” items, compliments of HauteLook and Target.

(I realize that I’m simply yet again setting myself up for later recants, but surely not. Surely. Not.)

I may be wearing athletic leggings as pants now, but at least I don’t wear these.

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“When leggings as pants aren’t edgy enough for you anymore, try hose as pants wrapped in brightly colored Ace Bandages!”

I cannot help but wonder the state of the crotch. Are we talking mummy-in-a-diaper or celebrity peek-a-boo?

If you prefer to mix and match your hosiery and metallic Lycra, there’s this variety:

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* Note: anyone without thigh gap, which includes me and 99% of the world, will get exactly one wear out of these pants before getting a run in that frighteningly thin seam.

If you prefer to look like the Tin Man halfway through the shredder rather than C-3PO, they have you covered as well.

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However. Any and all leggings ever made are better than a dropped-crotch pant.

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Especially a dropped-crotch sweat pant. With heeled boots.

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Because nothing says “I wear granny panties and Depends and maybe Pampers too” like a crotch that intentionally comes down to your knees.

Speaking of Granny Panties.

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Can anyone explain to me why you want Granny in the front, party in the back?

No.

If you’re going to wear a thong, wear a thong. If you’re going to cover the bottom half of your rib cage with your underwear, cover the bottom half of your rib cage with your underwear. You can’t have it all.

But let’s talk about what we’ve come here to talk about: What not to wear when running.

1. Don’t wear a sports bra that looks like it may have been hired to strangle you.

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2. Or a sports bra that looks like it just finished touring with Lady Gaga.

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3. In general, don’t give your boobs the opportunity to jump out the top of your top. It’s not good for aerodynamics.

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4. Don’t wear pants that were upcycled from your fifth grade class photo backdrop.

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Because no one needs flashbacks of their pimply tween face when they see your butt.

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5. Don’t wear “pants” that look like you just escaped from a cult.

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Because then everyone will assume you’re running from a bearded long-haired dude with 15 wives and 167 children, and you’ll be slowed down by dozens of offers to help.

6. Running skirts are weird. And they’re weirder still if printed with a 3-D Magic Eye poster from 1992.

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After all, you don’t want to make other runners go cross-eyed trying to see your secret message. Unless you’re in a race. Then by all means make the other contestants trip.

7. Shoulder Peek-A-Boo is not meant for running. We’re running, ladies, not clubbing in Miami.

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8. Unless you’re thighless, Dr.-Seuss-colored vertical stripes and spandex aren’t usually a good mix.

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And most importantly,

9. Do not. I say DO NOT. Run. In a Thong.

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I don’t care if it claims to be a performance thong.

So what if it says it wicks moisture. Exactly where do you think it’s going to send it?!

And you think your shoes rubbing your feet can cause chafing…you do not want chafing in the places a thong can travel.

And after a marathon, no amount of laundry detergent could make that thing sterile again. Assuming it doesn’t pop and smack you in the face on mile 22.

Let’s all just agree that VPL is okay when running – because the alternatives are deadly.