...for a different kind of girl

silent surburban girl releasing her voice, not yet knowing what all she wants to say about her life and the things that make it spin. do you have to be 18 to be here? you'll know when i know.

Friday, November 30, 2007

this is the beginning...

Hi Lady I Had The Pleasure Of Assisting Yesterday,

It was nice to meet you. I know our time together was fleeting, but do know that I like to make every experience at the giant megatron bookstore a fulfilling one for our customers. It's because of you that I earn my pay.

However, it's also because of you that I sigh, enter the break room and scream the silent scream of a thousand dying souls and listen as my fellow coworkers tell me how pale and shaky I am (you know, I get told that a lot. huh. anyway...) after attempting, unsuccessfully, to swim with you through the shark-infested waters of the children's department. In light of our experience together, I feel it necessary to say the following: please don't get mad at me if I devote several very busy minutes to you tossing out idea after idea that you shoot down. It would rock if you actually knew something about the child you're wishing to purchase a book for. Their age, interest, reading level, what they ate for supper last night. Anything. Trust me, I don't get paid enough for you not to accept any of my ideas and then stand there, indignant, as I begin to concede defeat at your hands.

Because when you dissed on my Little House on the Prairie idea 30 minutes into our happy time together, I'd had it. Nobody knocks Half-Pint, people. Nobody. And nobody has to sigh really loudly and look at me like I am an idiot when I do, OK? Save it for your own break room.

I realize it's a bit ironic to toss this little note off to you, what with the reading and all it requires. Apparently words aren't your thing. No worries. I get it. Words are scary for some people. Plus, you don't know me. I don't know you. But I'm going to encounter more like you. We've only just begun this journey of holiday shopping, so let's all work together and make the season bright, shall we?


Oh, and please don't say "Little House on the Prairie was a book, not just a television show?!" when someone suggests it. FYI. We'll all get along much better this way.


Your friendly neighborhood bookseller. I mean it. I'm friendly. Pale, shaky, but hella friendly.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

not found in 'The Art of War'

"Mom, which do you think would win in a battle. Army men toys or Barbie?"

"Seriously? Barbie. No doubt."

"Nuh unh! Army men toys would totally beat Barbies in a battle! Army dudes have everything! Everything! They would totally take Barbies."

"They don't have everything, my son."

"Whattaya mean they don't have everything?! They've got weapons and training and power! They'd totally defeat Barbie."

"They don't have intrigue, honey. Clearly you don't realize that Barbie is equipped, ready and willing to be anyone at any time.Vet? Check. Gymnast? Covered. Pop star? Absolutely. Super model? Obviously. Successful Sunshine Family mother of two? Fry it up in a pan. The point is, you never know who Barbie is from one moment to the next. Thus, she's a super fighter."

"Big deal."

"Oh, that's not the biggest deal. I'll tell you the biggest deal. Barbie, my son, also has breasts. Sweater bombs, if you will. One day, you're gonna learn many a man, even those with weapons, training and power at their disposal, have fallen victim to such an arsenal. They can make even the smartest men do the dumbest things."

"If you say so."

"Oh, I know so. I also think I've won this debate. Lesson learned."


Monday, November 26, 2007

'instead of making me better, U keep making me ill'

Dear Grey's Anatomy,

Hi! Let me just start off by saying I love you. You didn't have to make me say it, but I'm sayin' in. I love you. I didn't want to. Nope. I pretended you didn't exist for two seasons. You didn't sway me with that whole Patrick "McDreamy" Dempsey thing. I mean, nice try and everything, but I held strong. In the end, however, I suppose I was weak. I think you knew I would be. You and peer pressure ganged up on me, GA. In the course of one lazy week, I devoured the entire first two seasons on DVD. Hook, line and sinker. I'm a sheep, GA. And yeah, some of it was because of that "McDreamy" thing. That was smart thinking, GA.

But wow, GA, it's like all of a sudden, you want to remind people that you're a drama set in a hospital, and not just some "who's doing who in the on-call room" free for all. Because seriously, in my opinion, the gore level is off the charts lately! Seriously! (Thanks for injecting 'seriously' into the lexicon of my vocabulary, btw!) And this is from the girl who freeze-framed that bomb squad guy blowing up after Meredith handed him that cannon ball from that episode in season 2. You know the one. Not only did I freeze-frame it, but I watched it over and over again. In slow motion. Then capped it off with the "how we blew that dude up" piece in the DVD extras.

I've watched surgeons lift the faces off patients on Discovery Health while I've been dining on a plate of spaghetti and not been swayed. I can handle the gore thing. But my God, the last couple weeks with you? It's been tough! First you give me the whole "pencil through the eye socket, but wait! let's see the bulging brain!" thing one week, and then the next you make my quirky crush, Seth Green (I heart you, Robot Chicken), erupt like a freakin' geyser. I seriously covered my face, peeked through my fingers, and screamed "Sweet baby Jesus!"

And then I rewound the DVR and watched it again. And again gave a shout to the Christ child. Because I'm not kidding. I love Seth Green. So yeah, there's that.

You had me at Denny Duquette, GA. You might recall that story line. Not a lot of blood shed. Just tears, glorious tears. When are you going to make me cry again, GA? When?

Anyway, just thought I'd touch base with you. You know I'm not going anywhere, even though I do have a bit of a beef with the whole 'McDreamy/McSteamy' suddenly being BFFs, the thought of Izzie and George together makes me want to grab that No. 2 pencil and gouge at my own eyes, and every time I see Dr. Hahn on screen, I think about putting the lotion in the basket, but I'll get over it.

Because I love you, GA. There. You made me say it again.




Wednesday, November 21, 2007

'love to eat turkey like a good boy should'

"What'cha thankful for this Thanksgiving, dear?"


blank stare

"Really? That's seriously what you're thankful for this year?"

"Not just breasts. Big breasts. Big, white, juicy breasts. And not just big, white, juicy breasts. No. Big, white, juicy breasts that need to be stuffed."

"Um, we're probably not talking about turkey, are we?"

So, to recap - My husband is thankful for breasts. Though he didn't confirm that whole turkey query, I assume he meant my breasts and not those of the 17 pound Butterball my mom will prepare lovingly for us on Thanksgiving.

And me? Well, I'm thankful to be married to a man who has the hilarious sense of humor one typically finds in the average 14 year old boy. This is good, since I giggle at the word "penis" from time to time. And "fart." This, of course, makes me your average 12 year old boy.

Your average 12 year old boy with succulent, pale boobs.

(You've missed the boob talk, haven't you? Eh, it's out there in a lot of stuff, ladies and gentlemen. But you're welcome. Just think of me as your Thanksgiving miracle)


Monday, November 19, 2007

so maybe. maybe not.

Last Thursday I planned to take a test. I’m not very good at tests. I panic a bit. I think I know everything and yet, when faced with the need to answer, I freeze. But this test was going to be easy and, in all honesty, I was looking forward to it with an anticipation that grew daily.

That anticipation was especially great last Sunday as I sat in church. I have a tough time concentrating in church as it is, but last Sunday was particularly hard. Everywhere I looked, I was face to face with the answers to the test I was anxious to take. I’d look to one side and spot one, then the other. That has to be a sign I’m going to do well, I convinced myself. But, for further assistance, I turned toward that which I used to always turn to at test time, and I bowed my head, closed my eyes and prayed. I prayed to pass.

On Tuesday, my test was cancelled, when, more than two weeks late, my period finally arrived and quashed the need tick two minutes off of my life in anticipation for something I know I want, and, sadly, think I must start accepting is never going to happen for me again.

Here’s where I tell you typing that sentence up there is tough, what with the tears that sneak up on me. Sure, they’re not long-lasting tears. I blink a few times, and PRESTO! They’re gone. They’ve had company, though. They join the ones that filled my eyes as I watched a baby find solace in the hollow of his mother’s neck and drift off into that instantaneous newborn sleep last Sunday at church, and they are familiar with the others that fell in the shower Tuesday morning as I pressed my forehead against the slippery walls and gave myself the quick acceptance pep talk.

In short, I wanted to be pregnant. To be even shorter, I’m not. This disappoints me more than I imagined it would. Probably because spending so much time imagining what it would be like to have a new baby in the house again prevented me from thinking about the real possibility I wasn’t going to be doing that.

Maybe not soon. Maybe not this coming year. Maybe the following. Maybe not ever.

There are a lot of maybes in whether or not my husband and I will have more children. Maybe I’ve had my opportunities and, my God, how I love them! I know I’m lucky to have had three opportunities to have had children, and from those, I was blessed with two really great sons. Maybe now, though, I have to start the slow acceptance process – the mourning process, really – of not being tested at this new motherhood thing ever again while we figure out the answers to the other tests the maybes present.

Friday, November 16, 2007

'i will sing, sing a new song...'

On my last day in my 30s, I was apparently quasi-good, sorta wise, a little brisk, a bit sweet (oh, but the bitter...), marginally sharp, eh? Kinda smart (still won't stake claims to any math genuis titles!), always hip, way out of control on the neat thing, but now? Now neater! A smidge dull. Proud, but not off-the-charts so, perhaps just a little strong mixed with a taste of bold.

But now? Well, now I'm everything with an -er tacked on the end, ladies and gentlemen! Woo Hoo!

'Twas a glorious day to turn 40. There was nakedness, flowers, pizza, cake and ice cream, money, spa gifts, the new Duran Duran cd (because in my head, damn right, sometimes I'm still 15), a hundred kisses, pencil-drawn, notebook-paper cards, telephone calls, emails, IM chats, a nice quiet lunch with myself, further nakedness, and, of course, wonderfully nice and terribly appreciated birthday greetings from all of you. Thank you for that.

Now? Now I go out with an -er. Older. Cooler. Sexier (damn right!). But I totally look 27.



Thursday, November 15, 2007

who says your birthday should be about you?

"You're sister called me today."

"Oh, I haven't heard from her for a couple weeks. What's up with her."

"She was a little freaked out. She didn't even say hello when I answered."

"Yeah? What's wrong. Should I call her?"

"'Do you realize ----------'s birthday is Thursday?' she practically yelled to me. I told her yes, I remembered it was your birthday. I've never forgotten one. Because I'm your mom. That's what moms do."

"Awww! That's sweet of her. And of you, too, Mom. Wow! That's so sentimental of you. Are you tearing up at the thought of my birth?"

"Listen, missy! Don't get all sentimental in your old age!"

"Thanks for the love, Mom! You crack me up! Except I'm afraid to laugh too hard. Because apparently I'm old now. And old people are incontinent. And I respectfully refuse to pee my pants a little bit. Because I save that for when I sneeze really hard."

"Wow, Ms. Smart Mouth. Seriously, were you born with that mouth?"

"I don't know Mom. You were there. I thought moms didn't forget that kind of thing."

"So anyway, your sister started blabbering in a complete panic. 'Do you realize your oldest daughter is going to be forty this week?? She's going to be forty, Mother!! FORTY!!'"

"Say forty some more, Mom. It's like poetry to me. If you were a guy, I'd tell you you were turning me on and ask you for a photo. Except that would probably make me a dick, and you didn't raise no dicks, Mom."

"Are you this smart mouthed with people who aren't related to you? Do you want me to go on?"

"Yes, Mom. You left off at 'FORTY!!'"

"So you're sister's a bit excited about you turning forty. Well, maybe excited isn't the word. Terrified. That's it! She's terrified that you're turning forty."

"She really needs to get a hobby. I should call her and tell her that. Why is she terrified that I'm turning forty?"

"Well, honey, she says if you're suddenly forty, that means she's going to be forty. In two years! She says she can't fathom the idea of being that old!"

"Wow. Did you tell her she'd be lucky to live that long? Better yet, did you tell her I'm your favorite?"

"You get that smart mouth from me, don't you?"


Monday, November 12, 2007

doin' it doggy style

I know you've probably been wondering and have been too afraid to ask, so let me come right out and tell you. Yes, being a bookseller is as glamorous as you imagine it to be.

The constant stream of party invitations, photo shoots, and charity events on the calendar. Dodging the paparazzi as they jump out from between the shelves. Attending club openings with the latest celebrity debutante hours out of rehab. Pooh poohing the Nobel committee when they hint at giving me that prize once again (seriously, give that thing to Bono already and let's move on, shall we?).

Oh sure, being a glamorous and powerful celebrity bookseller sounds like fun, but it's a lot of hard work. You don't just wake up one day and become someone like me. Oh no. First you have to go into a bookstore and complete an application. Then you must ascertain whether you could feasibly pretend the manager who interviews you could be your work spouse, eventually get hired, and spend a lot of time behind a cash register. Then you graduate to Customer Service, where you'll think you've made it when you can still smile brightly even though every conversation you have in a six to eight-hour shift begins with the phrase, "I'm looking for a book..."

But you've not made it yet. Nope. You don't officially make it to celebrity status until you can caste aside your humility and don a giant animal costume, endure the snickering of your fellow booksellers (booksellers who only dream about being half as hot as you!), and compel toddlers and preschools to pee their pants in either fear or mad lust as you lumber toward them with your giant red paw stretched out as though you wish to crush their tiny toddler heads. Better yet if you can get them to soil themselves in some combination of the two emotions. While crying. Or screaming. Or humping your fake fur covered leg, because for some reason, that's going to end up happening.

Like it did to me last week when I was made to wear a Clifford the Big Red Dog costume.

A Clifford costume that had been worn many times over by other people. Other people who'd christened it with their sweat, thus leaving behind a funk cocktail so heady it can't even be described despite the fact I've been told many times over I should be a writer and thus should have the proper adjectives, but no, I don't, because I still have a headache from the weight of the giant dog head pressing on my cranium. And I thank God I do because it forces me not to dwell on the idea that, while I hope it's not true, you know it has to be because seriously, if you had the ways and means to do so, you know you'd fart in one of these big furry costumes, so you and I have to assume someone at some time has tested the acoustics of said costume by beeping their ass horn while in it. Sadly, I'm going on the assumption it's been everyone up to, but excluding, me.

Yes, it's only then that you feel like you've made it. That you've gotten that belly scratch from management that makes your back paws whip like a propeller. And I did it all for less than $10 an hour. Awww! You want my autograph? You guys are so sweet! Who should I make it out to? Seriously. I've been practicing the signature. Come on.

After wooing the young crowd with my animal magnetism, we packed the costume back up. Inside the shipping container, we found a little photo album in which previous "Cliffords" had documented their visits to other bookstores in the chain via Polaroid photos and notes. Many included lovely photos of them hugging their admiring young fans. Yawn. I suggested we include a vicious homage depicting Clifford, paws up, with a fake tire mark across his gut. Or a hand holding up Clifford's head only, two black X's over the dog's eyes. Or perhaps Clifford lounging in one of the comfy chairs set up around the store, one paw holding a tattered copy of Dog Fancy, the other holding...well, yeah. Where my dogs at, y'all! You can clearly see why management doesn't want to lose an employee like me!

So yes, being a bookseller can be rough, but, as we've seen here, it does have its VIP perks. If you keep your snout clean and have an overwhelming desire to help people who are looking for a book, you, too, could be one of the lucky ones, like me. A celebrity bookseller. Steeped in couture Clifford costumes. Rollin' in the slightly higher than minimum wage kibble. After hours howlin' with the Duke and Snoop (that's Marmaduke and Snoopy to those non-celebs). Yep. Good times.



Friday, November 09, 2007

'let's talk about all the good things & the bad things that may be'

So the other night, I'm sitting at McDonald's with my kids and my Dad and I'm doing what I typically do when I go to McDonald's, which is bitch about how nasty and cold the food is, and rant about how, if I wanted to eat food in a place that resembled the restroom in Trainspotting, I'd whip up a little something at home, take my plate upstairs to the bathroom the penis-bearing populace of my house frequent, and wedge myself between the tub and the toilet. I'm quite the lovely dining companion. A living, breathing Happy Meal, if you will.

As I'm picking at the congealed cheese on my burger, I hear the first in a series of hacking coughs directly behind me. Just as I'm thinking, "Nice one. Geez," I feel something wet hit the back of my neck. Normally, I'd consider this an impressive trick considering the length and depth of my hair, but as the remaining phlegm settle upon me and begins it's decent down my neck, I realize I'd been hacked on by a snot nosed kid who, short of taking my face lovingly in his hands and licking me, forehead to chin, has chosen to share his disease (and maybe some globs of his chicken nuggets) with me with the most intense bronchial prowess I've ever heard. In order to claim that title, he chose to hack on me again. And again. And once more. But wait! As I turned to give him the "WTF?" look (the same one I tried to give his oblivious mom seated two tables over - I knew it was her because she kept telling him to "Shhhh!!!" while she visited with her equally oblivious friend), he coughed directly in my face, assuring the first cold of the season would arrive soon.

So, long story short (Did you stick with me there? I know some people would be scared of my wordy words and be all, "You talk too much. Shut up, bitch!"), this kid's germs have, as predicted, grabbed the reigns of my sinuses and have been yanking on my brain since around 3 p.m. Thursday, and while I have lots of things to say and lots of emails to reply to (eyeez send emalez. prom iz, yeah?), you're stuck with some rambling thoughts for today.
  • This week I attended a women's ministry group meeting. It's a social/devotional time for us to get to know each other better. Blah, blah, blah. At the end of the meeting is a time for prayer requests. In my head, I start to sing "Paradise by the Dashboard Lights" and I'm at the "...so now I'm praying for the end of time, to hurry up and arrive..." part because we're nearly 45 minutes past the scheduled end of the meeting. As I start humming "'cause if I gotta spend another minute with you, I don't think that I can really survive," I realize the lady seated next to me is asking us to pray for her sex life. *Bink* *Blink* Be gone, Meatloaf! I perk up because who can resist soft core? She wants us to pray for her to feel more sexual and responsive to her husband. "Amen, sister!" shouted another woman, who then asked us to pray that she can please her husband sexually. She would've gone into more detail, but she was interrupted by another who asked if we'd pray for her to be able to orgasm. Normally I go to church on Sunday and have a tendency to tune out (God and I haven't been talking about sex, see, because we've not been talking about much lately), but now I feel the need to start paying better attention because I don't want to drift off and find myself staring at the back of Bob and Sally's heads and wondering what they did Saturday night, wink wink.
  • For the past week, we've been a Nielsen family house. This means that every time we've had the television on, we've had to chart our viewing habits. As you can imagine, we've been drunk with power, believing we've a hand in what you'll get to watch. In truth, it really just shows we're suckers and will do anything for $5, which we received as a thank you for our efforts. Rest assured, America. Based upon what's been tracked here, Spongebob Square Pants and Mythbusters (blech!) will never go off the air. And let me apologize now for the pat on the back I've given VH1 for the Salt and Pepa Show. "Cause if I, too, wanna take a guy home wit me tonight, it's none of yo bizzness" Not like I'd do that, though. Evil.
  • Speaking of evil, I'm convinced my computer is possessed by it, and knowing what I know, I don't think that's just me saying that to sound all cute and/or paranoid. I would pay $5 and promise never to let such evil into it again to have this thing exorcised.
  • So yesterday I'm all, "Motherhood is kinda sucky right now. Who was it that wanted these kids anyway? Blah," when it hit me that my period is hella late. So I'm giving it a few more days, because it's not a clockwork thing, but pretty close. Admittedly, although my fingers aren't necessarily crossed, when I realized this my thoughts went to "Kids are perfect! I love kids!"
  • Crap like this "fat suit investigation" pisses me off. I could go on an on about how pathetic I find these so-called investigative "news" pieces, starting with how the women (it's typically always a woman) are transformed into an obese person and then made to appear so homely and ugly, because, naturally, that's' what fat women must look like, right? Give me a break. I've been a fat woman. Having been one, I cringe when I hear the people who participate in these experiences cry and say how they can't stand to look at themselves, how they thank God they don't really look like that. Go to the supermarket and look at desserts. Ooooh! Look at the people look at you angrily for touching the cupcakes! What's that? You feel ignored today because you're fat and no one is acknowledging you, unlike yesterday, when you were skinny, it was all eyes on you? Gag. Guess what. A couple hours later, you get to go back into the make up chair and have all the padding removed and return to "normal." Magic. An added bonus is you don't have to carry around the "fat girl thoughts" in your head after you're back to your fighting weight. There's no new "news" to these kinds of stories, and I just find it insulting.
  • I'm further insulted that I stumbled across that piece on Entertainment Tonight as I was browsing the television channels and now, since I watched it, I have to record it in my Nielsen family viewing journal. Sigh.

OK, the night time cold medicine is starting to kick in, so my rambling should stop. It was kind of you to humor the sick girl by reading the ramblings. You're sweet. Feel free to ramble in the comments. Any topic's fine. I totally won't hack on you.


Wednesday, November 07, 2007

you are an obsession, you're my obsession...

I will have you

Yes I will have you

I will find a way and I will have you

Even if that means I have to paw around in my son's trick or treat booty bag when he's not looking - Mommy's just getting the bread out, baby! - because I caught a passing glance of something red and taunting when I may or may not have been looking for a fun size Snickers bar. I'm just saying. So what? Like you'd not do the same thing? It's chewy caramel, milk chocolate and crispy crunch, my wild butterflies. Out of all the Halloween goodness (my goodness has turned to badness...my need to possess you has consumed my soul...) squandered away by they boys, this is (was!) the only 100 Grand bar brought into my home. The only one! What up, people?! Rectify this matter for next Halloween! Thank you in advance.


Monday, November 05, 2007

the first rule of Guess the Letter is make me crazy

Saturday afternoon and it's game on at my house.


Oh, how I do love games!

As irony would have it, I'm apparently raising two boys who refuse to follow the rules. Me. The girl who knows the rules. Oh, you better believe I do. Though, admittedly, the unwritten ones really kind of screw me up. Then screw me over. Whatever. That's not the point here.

The point here is that my sons are anarchists. Jolly good. Apparently, they're also bored. I suppose being bored + living by their own rules = anarchy. I could be wrong, but go with me here.

Saturday afternoon, I listened in as my youngest created a never ending game of "Guess The Letter."

What's the gist of "Guess the Letter"? Glad you asked. Read the name of the game again. "Guess the Letter." See! That's it. The name is the game AND the rules! So simple a five year old could create it!

Which he did. Patent pending.

Laying upside down upon the couch (defying a rule I have about how to treat the furniture, btw), my youngest pulled individual cards from a deck of standard playing cards and yelled, "It's a letter of the alphabet! GO!" to my oldest son, who was blobbed out on the floor playing some game on the PS2 (I also have a rule about daytime video game playing, but honestly, by Saturday, it was a long weekend already and I'd have done just about anything for a moment of peace. Yeah, so that worked out well).

So my oldest son began yelling out random letters.


"Nope. Try another!"


"Nope. Try another!"


"Nope. Try another!"


"Nope. Try another!"


"Nope. Try another!"


"Nope. Try another!"

You see where this first round is going, right? Through the entire alphabet. Yep. Until my youngest son decided that the six of spades he was clutching to his chest was actually the letter Y. Twenty-five calls and responses. Woo hoo! That was fun! Let's play again! Mom, do you want to get in on this? Sigh.

Round two found my oldest son trying to foolishly trick the card wizard by starting the guessing with the letter B. Tricky. Very tricky. When he would lock onto the winning card (round 2 went to the letter V. Lucky V), my youngest would award him random points. My oldest boosted his round 1 winnings from 12 points to 300,015 in the second round.

Yeah. I don't get it either. Probably because there might have been some shady math involved, and, honestly, I know from experience that guys have a tendency to start twisting the rules around halfway through games and the whole "making up their own rules" thing just kind of slays me, so I started to tune out by the time round 4 was starting and I was all "Seriously?! You're really going to start the guessing with D?"

So that was my weekend. Part of it anyway. Don't be jealous, y'all. And don't go stealing this game idea, btw. Because I trust you, anonymous people inside my computer, and I just may market this idea and make a killing in time for the holidays.


Friday, November 02, 2007

i need a hero. who talks. and sometimes cries.

I used to date a man who, when we were together, wrote me poems and referred to me by a nickname that, when spoken, sounded like he was singing. Every night, when we were apart, we'd speak for hours on the telephone and whisper words of love and encouragement. When together, we'd do the same thing, only it was deeper and more thoughtful.

Kind of like something out of a Wham! video.

In short, the time we were together felt connected. He knew how I was feeling. I knew how he was feeling. We spoke about those feelings. I never doubted his manliness, and I believe I kept a pretty even keel on the whole woman thing.

So earlier this week, I was speaking to this man when he said, "You want a man who "feels" things as deeply as you do, and he doesn't, or at least doesn't seem to, and can't communicate it if he did. Men are simply not wired that way. Other men call guys like that names on the playground. Men are ruled by appearances. Emotions are an outward sign of vulnerability, and therefore are open to exploitation. Men are supposed to be the rock, dear. We are the ones who are supposed to care for and provide the necessities of life for women, not become them ourselves."

Our conversation came after I shared with my friend that the personal matter I've been dealing with for such a very long time has been (finally) resolved favorably and that I'd wished my husband would've been as outwardly happy and relieved for me as I was with him when I shared the news. For a very long time, my husband has stood by me in this issue, but he has remained stoic and silent. Rather than talking to me about it, he'd let me fret and cry to him, and he'd show his support as he best knew, which was by being silent, but the silence only made me feel more alone. He never showed me or told me how he was impacted by it so I could feel less alone (and intrinsically I know he was impacted for he's not devoid of feeling - and because my friends who pulled me from my home to help me a couple weeks ago told me he was so frustrated and upset by the matter that he cried to them. Hearing that made me cry harder because it was everything I had wanted from him for so long).

Before you ask, yes, I've had this conversation with my husband, too. We've had the "show me your feelings" conversation many times during our marriage. After all he had to say about the resolution of this recent matter was "good," I told him I'd have felt like this was truly resolved had he given me even a hug and offered up a word of thanks. It was a matter that, when completed, really deserved some type of emotional response. God knows, I was happily a wreck for a change; however, part of me felt inappropriate in my personal response.

I know I married a man who is, truly, very silent. He can talk surface topics for so long I sometimes wish there was a contest that offered a huge cash prize for such a skill. But he doesn't like to find himself in the middle of conversations that might test him. Abhors confrontation. Not one to make a fast decision. So his response doesn't come as a huge surprise to me. And, on the flip side, perhaps I'm too quick to get emotional sometimes, though I don't think I am a person who cries needlessly over silly things, or bursts into rages should the slightest thing go array. I stew about things rather than spill sometimes, much to my chagrin. In this respect, I suppose the case could be made that my husband and I are perfectly suited this way. But we're also committed to each other, and committing to someone means sharing with them. Sharing everything.

So it comes down to this for me - do men seriously think that today, as relationships have evolved and grown, they can't show any type of emotion to their wives or girlfriends or, hell, anyone, for fear of appearing weak and vulnerable? Is it really that emasculating to cry? The gender roles have evolved greatly since the days when knights in shining armour were slaying dragons to rescue damsels in distress, and yet no matter how often or to how many men I argue this whole "show your emotions" case to, I tend to hear responses in line with what my friend said above. Some have even told me they'd rather take a beating then cry about something "because that's just what a man does." This kind of response leaves me questioning whether I am actually hyper sensitive, or do I just expect too much from a man who has chosen to share his life and all facets of it with a woman.

I could go on and on about this subject. Clearly, you can tell by the fact that I barely ever manage to write a short post (or, as you've no doubt figured out and, if not, will soon see that I also can't write a short sentence), that I'm one of those who likes to talk about an issue or an emotion until all parties are satisfied and perhaps singing happy songs together while sharing an uncomfortably long embrace. However, I'm interested in hearing what you all think. If you're a female reader, does your partner share their feelings with you? Do they dare show their emotions, or do they fear it a sign of weakness? How does that make you then feel if they can't share that side of themselves with you? Do you feel as though you must tamp down your emotions for them? Men, if you're among the apparently large army of "strong and silent" types, why are you that way? Was it a matter of nature versus nurture? Is there really a fear in shedding a tear? Would your really rather take a beating then be vulnerable to the person you loved? If you're not part of that army, what is it allows you to feel comfortable sharing or shedding?

If it helps, I'll hum "Careless Whisper" while you all ponder these questions and we share together openly in the comments.