Not Crazy, Just Mad

bIt’s a Sunday mid-morning on Mother’s Day, and I’m in our front yard sitting in a patch of sun.  The inside of our home is much colder than the outside temperature, and I just want to warm up a little bit.   Our three chickens Hazel, Malena and Emily cluck soothingly beside me in their coop.  My husband Craig is in the living room supervising our girls playing with Lucy the feisty puppy.

We just had an argument.

I blame Mother’s Day for it.

Over the past few days, I prepped Craig about Mother’s Day, saying I would like to “do my own thing”, within reason.  I didn’t require gifts, flowers or  fancy dinner.  I thought that he’d consider himself lucky to have such a low-maintenance wife!  Then I clarified my request and said I wanted to have a lot of writing time.  I didn’t think I was being unreasonable, and he didn’t say that was unacceptable.

But just now, after I had been glued to my laptop for a few hours, my husband just told me that I had a “dysfunctional” relationship with our computer.  That was a low blow.  I’ve freely admitted I’m online too much as a rule, both to him and to pretty much everyone on the planet, but to throw a nasty label like that at me really hurt.  Plus, it’s Mother’s Day.  Shouldn’t I be treated like the Queen that I am?

Now I sit in a puddle of sunlight feeling like I’m in an icy bath.

How dare you say that to me on holy Mother’s Day!!!  I wanted to scream at him.  It would have felt soooo good to yell.  But I won’t do it because I stopped my rage-fests a long time ago.  Making a complete spectacle of myself is the last thing I want to do in front of my girls, our puppy, and our new neighbors who moved in yesterday next door.

So I’m taking a deep breath.  I’m taking another one.  I’m going to keep away from my innocent computer for a while.  Our relationship is not dysfunctional.  I have a life outside of being online, albeit more narrow than I’d like it to be.

My MacBookPro and I are just friends!  We have a healthy relationship consisting of mutual admiration and respect.  I’m reminded of a great 1984 sci-fi, romantic drama called “Electric Dreams” that depicts a love triangle between a man, a woman, and a home computer.  It really was a charming film, and I loved it so much that I bought the Giorgio Moroder-composed soundtrack.  


I digress.  I need to shake off my anger and do it as swiftly as I can.  I hate feeling this way.  I know what I’ll do!!!

It’s puppy therapy time!

Photo on 2014-05-11 at 14.47

I shall take a few private minutes with my furball, tell her of my woes, and hold her gently in my arms.  I will let her lick my face even though her breath is pretty iffy – I’ve seen what else she licks and it ain’t pretty, or hygienic for that matter.  I don’t care.  I’m upset and I need comfort.  It’s refreshing to realize I can give myself a time-out with my canine.  Wow.  This is so cool!

As I embrace this coping strategy I can already feel a shift in my rage.  I’m still quite upset by what happened, but I’ll discuss my hurt feelings with Craig after I’ve had my Lucy time.  It might not be such a bad idea to suggest to Craig to have a few minutes alone with Lucy before we work things out.

Suggesting to hang out with one’s pet to overcome a nasty spat may sound simplistic.  I don’t think it is.  The feedback I’ve gotten from my pet-owning friends is that their “fur children” have helped them with emotions such as anger, sadness and loneliness immeasurably.  I remember the comfort I felt as a little girl laying by my Irish Setter’s warm side, hearing her gentle
breathing and watching her chest rise and fall.  It has been a long time since I’ve had my own dog comfort me, and the gift of Lucy’s unconditional love is a Mother’s Day gift of the highest degree.



18 thoughts on “Not Crazy, Just Mad

  1. I agree with you Dyane. It is amazing how you handled the situation. Deciding what is best to do takes up a lot of effort. Yes, mothers day should be all about what mommy wants because it is so hard to be one. It was not too much you were asking for. So, take another very deep breath and think my dear, may be he was just trying to own his love that is you ! You are a woman with wisdom. My best wishes and prayers with you, May this day be a sunshine in your life’s chapter. Feel better ! Love

    • Thank you kind, dear Zeph! You are so good to me, and I value your comments & compliments more than words can sya. Ooooh, I’m glad you didn’t see the look on my face after I heard that word “dysfunction” – it wasn’t pretty. I got up today and thought “I’m SOOOO glad Mother’s Day is over!” Today is a better day. I’m alone with Lucy puppy for five hours!

      I hope that whatever you’re up to today, you are doing some nice things for yourself!! You deserve that so much. All of us mothers deserve good things, don’t we? Mothers are the ultimate creative beings, and if it wasn’t for us, there would be nothing cool! To quote from the great “Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory” film I love, “*We are the music makers… and we are the dreamers of dreams.”!!!

      sending you wonderful dreams, beautiful music and CHOCOLATE! 😉 (if you like it! I’m made out of it!)

      • everything is going fine my dear, just low but fine. i agree dysfunction was a strong word. hahaha. thank you for the wonderful dreams cz my meds give me nightmares and chocolate. yumm. even better and its true. you are made from something so special. love xoxox

  2. I can so relate Dyane. One of my triggers yesterday was that my 3 year old brought home a mother’s day card from church. It had different sentence starters on it that the teacher helped her finish. One of the sentences said, “My mom is best at…”. Do you know what my 3-year-old said?… “Being on the computer” !! That made me feel so guilty that I think I went a little nuts. So what did I do? Used my time yesterday and spent even more time on the computer instead of taking a nap (what I REALLY needed more than anything). My guilt and sadness increased from a few other triggers to the point where I actually started having suicidal thoughts. Literally crazy!
    Anyway, if something like my blog keeps me feeling like I have a world I can relate to – I’m not going to feel guilty about it. But I am going to work harder to treasure my family when I’m not on the computer. The computer has so MANY things I use it for these days that it’s impossible to stay away.

    • I would have done the EXACT thing that you did, Doreen, after reading such a Mother’s Day card!!! I would have sought solace in the laptop. Both of my kids have given me a hard time about being on the computer and to make matters more difficult, the girls and I share this laptop so we are constantly at each other’s throats wanting to use it.

      There are worse things one can do than be online too much, i.e. go out driving while upset/angry, or binge on two tubs of delectable Hazen Dazs chocolate-chocolate chip and cookie dough. (Ahem!)

      I am SO SO SO sorry that you had to feel guilt and sorrow yesterday on such a loaded day, not to mention be faced with the horrific suicidal thoughts as well. I consider you a friend and that really breaks my heart to hear that. I know today is a special one for you and I hope it is 100% better! Sending you my love and you’re in my prayers, you awesome writer.

  3. I agree that our furry friends are great therapy. My cat Epiphany loved me unconditionally and non-judgmentally for 15 years. She helped get me through many tough spots

    • Robin, hi there! I *love* the name Epiphany that you chose…fifteen years is a long time to have your furry angel! I am so glad that you had each other during the good and the bad. Thank you for reading!

  4. I can relate, as both my son and my husband have asked that I unplug at times to focus on the present. They do, of course, have a point. We must not cut off those who love us and are in the same room. We must Be Here Now. I, too, am guilty of living distractedly and being consumed with maintaining my online presence. Listen to your husband without reacting emotionally, if at all possible. I righteously rage, as well. Take a step back and reframe was he has said, give him an opportunity to use different more loving words. I bet he meant, we love you and miss you. We want your presence, especially today, so that we can shower you with our love actively.

    • Thank you so much for helping me feel less alone with this issue. That’s worth its weight in gold to me! (Notice that I did not write “chocolate”! 😉

      As you noted, he simply wanted me to be present with the family, but again it was that icky wicky word that ticked me off. I’m telling you, if that conversation happened a year ago, I would have started speaking in tongues and my head would have started rotating. Glory Hallelujah, progress has been made!

      I hope that you had a good Mother’s Day yesterday and that your son and husband treated you with heaps of love!!! You most definitely deserved it!

      • We celebrated Saturday with a nice sushi dinner. Sunday I shuttled them downhill mountain biking in Laguna Beach. We struck a deal. I spent Friday with my mom in Hermosa Beach.

      • I think we need to train those we love on how to best speak to us so that they don’t push our buttons. What words to avoid, to say what they actually mean behind their requests or complaints, to phrase things lovingly. Of course, conversely we have to take a breath and not explode. I have and do explode. I’m a work in progress.

  5. Maybe I’m the only one amongst you all who remembers what it was like having hubbies and kids before the onslaught of electronic devices such as computers and iPhones, but I remember getting my first computer back in 1985, I think it was, and then becoming totally obsessed with email, which was about the only thing on it that I could comprehend at that time. I remember being huddled over said computer for hours on end while my kids did god only knows what all and were left to their own devices but fortunately they were old enough to be able to navigate through life at that time without my constant attention so they survived my obsession with that first computer. Nowadays whenever I manage to get together with any of my adult kids, there’s definitely payback in place–
    I find myself constantly in competition with their iPhones for their attention. They’re either checking
    their Facebook, their email, or playing some kind of game. I’ve found myself actually waving my
    hand in the air and having to say, “Hello, I’m over here!” to get some attention.

    But anyway….I had a nice Mother’s Day~~ our youngest son had me over and he and his girlfriend cooked dinner and we watched “The Wolf of Wall Street”. I’m a big Leo fan!

    • I got a big kick out of this comment! Maybe you were a leetle bit older than me in 1985 (I was 15 and my first computer was a Mac Plus) Those were the days. I’m glad you had a nice Mother’s Day!!! Having your child cook you dinner sounds pretty awesome to me. Now, please don’t fall off your chair, but I’ve never seen “The Wolf of Wall Street”. I’ll take your word for it that it’s good. And Leo is a very talented actor and he’s not so bad on the eyes! 😉

  6. If only all the wonderful people of the world like us could get together in one spot, we wouldn’t need computers, right? happy mom’s day. spend them any way that makes you happy. love the puppy pics. . .

    • I love your comment!!! I’ll be taking & posting more puppy pics soon because she’s growing like a weed. Hope you are having a good day and thanks for your wonderful blog. (((hugs)))

  7. Hugs Dyane. I had so many thoughts after I read this post earlier. I have been accused of living through my laptop as well. What my husband doesn’t understand is how much I relied on the community of Warrior Moms to get me through the days. He was taking care of everything else on the home front. I was in survival mode, and I found comfort, friendship, empathy and understanding. He was a huge support for me, but I also relied and still rely on those friendships I have made. It is so hard to talk about it.

    • Thank you so much for this comment – you clearly understand and it’s so nice to hear from someone who “gets it” and is also involved with the Warrior Mom community! I am glad that you have support from a wonderful husband as well as the friendships. Both are precious and essential. Sending you hugs as well! And happy runs! You’re a total inspiration and I’m stoked I found your blog!

  8. So good to hear from you, Zephyr! Thank you for your steadfast support and empathy – you too are a special mama. I understand all too well how our meds give us nightmares – what a pain. Wouldn’t it be cool if the meds had the opposite effect and we had cool, fun dreams? Someone needs to invent that – a legitimate form, ha ha.

    Anyway, on a *much) brighter note, sending you my love and a big,’ol hug!!!!!!!!!

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