…but they are not helping. This is going to be like the Star Wars saga. I have been meaning to write about the steroids and me….but it’s still in “draft”. The title of the post will be “Steroids Didn’t Make Me Mental” because a) it’s true, they just impair my filter and b) that local colloquialism amuses My Marine to no end. “Make me mental” and “make me mental mad” are phrases from my childhood that pop out and betray my real, near-n-dear roots faster than dropping any consonant.
So I haven’t finished it…yet “steroid” stories are piling up on me.
Like last night…..
So, this is “Girl’s Weekend”. My mother, sisters, niece, etc will be at the Kelley family cottage tonight. This tradition started when Frankie was really young, right after a trip to New York, so I am going to guess 16 or 17 years ago. My mother used to work for John Hancock Insurance Company, or, as it was known in Boston “The Hancock” and I worked for “The Phone Company”. No one needed more info to identify your employer. Anyway, every December, “The Hancock” facilitates a Christmas shopping trip to New York. My mother had left “The Hancock” in the 60s, but some friends are for life, so she was going and she took Grace & Jen. I was, as I am now, very snotty about New York. But the following year she made it clear she wanted all her daughters to go, so really, you know I would have travelled to Timbuktu. It was such a comedy of errors, that if there isn’t already a post here about it (who knows with my sieve like memory), I should write one!
But the following year I said I could recreate all the good parts of the trip here at the cottage – dinner, shopping, sight-seeing. And I did. And ever since on Columbus Day weekend some of us come here to spend the first big fall weekend.
So I came up last night. My packing left much to be desired. It was a long day. It was infusion/steroid day. Did I want leftover soup for dinner? Or my delicious leftover East Bay steak tips? I didn’t know. Well if it was soup, I should grab crackers….oysterettes or Ritz, I took both. If I took the steak I would need a veg, I took broccoli….wait I need butter. What about dessert? The orange? The cookies? The spumoni?
Ok, so the food bag is ridiculous.
Wait, I need to go to Wal-Mart….where I forgot I packed the toothbrush and bought another.
Stuff from the house on it’s way to the storage facility crowds the giant-soccer-mom van…yeah, that’s back – FINALLY. And that’s another “steroid/chemo/brain drain story”, I spent $100 and had no van for 6 weeks so I could win a $40 argument. But I have principles!
So I get to the cottage and use my cell phone to see the padlock. Fine. I get on the back porch. I rifle my pockets for the key to the backdoor. No key ring. The van keys are on their own ring. I look through the van, it’s chaos. No interior light because of a fuse. Stuff from my house, stuff for the weekend, stuff from Wal-Mart. No key. I unload a bunch of stuff; it has to turn up, right?
I call Grace and tell her that I may be sleeping on the backporch, but it’s ok, Frankie has mistakenly moved the yellow couch to the back porch instead of my old house…so there is somewhere to sleep.
Finally I go back to Jen’s house…..quick search, no keys.
I go back to the cottage. I look in the back of the van and see a blue Bath & Body Works bag and something fires in my brain. YES! That is the bag with the important stuff…medications, phone charger, laptop charger, keys.
Ok, I am in the cottage. I straightening and cleaning, but there is actually precious little to do because I am following my cousin AnnMarie and it’s spotless. So I decide to take a bath. The bathroom looks fine and I am sure it was, but I am phobic about this, so I spray cleaner in the tub and let it soak in or up or whatever. I throw some sheets I brought in the washer. I put away all the crazy food I brought. I put out my pills for the night and morning with bottled water. I put on FoxNews. I open the front door and throw some cushions on the front porch chairs. I put some leftover wontons in the oven. I light a candle to offset the chemical smell from the bathroom cleaner.
Then I realize I left a bag in the van. I take just the van keys, open the inside back door and step onto the back porch and……
…pull the effing door shut behind me!!!!
Really? Am I really standing on the back porch, locked out?
Yes, I am.
I look at the door which was newly re-enforced this past spring. Nothing is helping me there. I look at the windows….nope, not even before steroids packed on all this weight (yeah, that’s right, the steroids eat those cookies, not me). I can’t even say “Screw it!” and sleep on the back porch because eventually the wontons in the oven will set off the smoke detector.
Then I realize that the front door is open and all that stands between me and cottage is a hook and eye lock. I go through the van for something to slip in between the door and the lock. There is really nothing but a piece of card board from a gum packet. I walk around to the front and try to slip it in. But it’s a no go. Apparently I have no burglary skills. Fuck it. I stick the car key in the screen and slit it. This will not make my parents happy.
Steroids didn’t make me mental….I did shit like this all the time. But steroids had me hysterical, swearing and talking to myself with tears rolling down my face. Upset that I can’t process. Upset that I can’t problem solve. I did this stuff before, but it was funny and I was able to resolve my problems. Don’t get me wrong, this was funny. I called Grace. We laughed. But I had to calm down and wash my face first. In the moment, I couldn’t cope.