Post-Op

Just a quick note to let you know that Aunt Becky is recovering well with her Painkiller Button Of Goodness.

To all who have pestered me for status updates, tweeted your well wishes, IM’ed, texted, or just thought of Becky while she went under the knife: THANK YOU. You guys go to eleven.

I know that Guilty Squid is preparing a guest post for the Internets but there seems to have been some sort of delay…so until then, or until they take away the Happy Button and send Becky back home to her crazy chilluns, I’m off to…uh…do whatever it is I do when, uh…Becky’s not around.

This is so weird.

Go Ask The Daver

I want you all to know that I have grown my hair out and shaved my chest hair just like this guy. So if I accidentally turn my head and hair-whip you with my locks of love, just know that it’s because I put the eeeee in Sweetest Day. Anyhow, Becky asked me to fill in for her today, so here I am.

Dear Aunt Becky, The Daver,

So, my NOT husband has no friends. And is absolutely okay with this. He works in construction and all the other guys he works with are either fresh out of jail or drug addicts, so it makes sense to not to be friends with those types. But should I feel better or worse that I never have to complain that he’s out at the bar all night with his buddies? Should I do like the movies and set him up on “man dates”?

He really thinks that it’s okay to not have friends, he says that he has enough with me and our son. Which is flattering but at the same time, what the hell is the matter with him?? I know he’s a little antisocial but you would think that he would want some sort of guy talk once in a while right? Am I over thinking this? Should I just be happy that he’s not out at the bars or strip clubs every weekend leaving me alone with the kid?

I totally know how this goes: Maybe he does want some sort of guy talk, but if he’s like me, there’s a limit to how much time he wants to spend seeking out friends vs. doing things he already knows are satisfying. I know I find the thought of actually *trying* to make friends pretty tiring, so I generally wait until I run into someone who I do enjoy and then find some times to hang out with them. Even so, I certainly don’t make it out to the bars or strip clubs (which are not really my thing either, so I go pretty rarely anyhow) outside of the occasional lunchtime pub stop or quick-beer-after-work, so maybe I have the same problem!

I guess what I’m trying to say is that it’s totally cool to not be super-social, and it’s fine to choose family over other people, as long as he knows he’s free to establish friendships when and how he sees fit, and that you support him either way.

–d

Dear Aunt Becky, The Daver,

My boyfriend is the sweetest, most wonderful guy on the planet and I feel incredibly lucky to have found such a gem after my last few horrible relationships.  Everything in our relationship is working wonderfully but there is one problem.  His mother.

Aunt Becky, I have NO IDEA what I may have done to this woman but she doesn’t like me at all.  At first my boyfriend tried talking to her about it but she would just change topics and try to ignore that he brought it up.  He never got any straight answers.  We’ve now been together for about a year and I thought things would be getting better, but they aren’t.

My boyfriend keeps telling me to just hang in there and that he will keep trying to talk to her about it and find out what the problem is.

I’m trying not to let her feelings bother me too much, but I can see it becoming a major problem soon since our relationship (the one with the boyfriend, not the mother) is getting more serious.  I feel like I have exhausted every effort to get to know her better and to let her get to know me so we can move past this issue, but I feel like nothing is working.  I’m not perfect, but I’m not a horrible person for someone to be dating either.  I am polite, dress appropriately, and always ensure that I’m putting my best foot forward when I’m around his family (not that I don’t normally do all of those things anyway).

What should I do here?  I’m so frustrated with trying but know I cannot just give up since it will probably affect my relationship with the boyfriend.  HELP!

Sincerely,

Out of Ideas

Dear Out of Ideas,

You can pick your nose, and you can pick your friends, but you can’t pick your friends’ nose. Or family.

I say, you’re dating HIM, not his mother. Sucks to be so harsh, but if he is just as mystified about it as you are, and it hasn’t affected your relationship over the year you’ve been together — then all you can do is simply let it go.  Not give up, mind you — when you are presented with an opportunity to understand and figure out whatever the issue is, then go for it — but let go; it’s clear that the issue is hers, not yours, and there’s nothing you can do except be yourself and enjoy your relationship with this super-sweet guy. Don’t let your concern that it might affect things later turn into a self-fulfilling prophecy!

-d

Dear My Most Super Rad Aunt, The Daver,

I have been having an internal dilemma lately. I have this fantabulous boyfriend who is crazy cute and super trustworthy. WE live together and he is pretty much the shiznit. However waaaay back in the day I accidentally read a very old email from his ex gf (said ex tried to get him back in the first month of our relationship, he chose me duh). In this email she expressed her uhm….excitement at the prospect of him once again sticking his magic meat stick in her pooper.

Now he has asked to do this with me before and I’m not really down with it. I’ve tried it before and just wasn’t a fan (although it wasn’t with him). It’s just something I’m not too jazzed about doing again. Well anyway down to the question. I’m way paranoid that he liked it a ton with her and is like, missing something with me. Oooor that he may think about it or think she is cooler or more rad because she was down with the dirty ya know?

So should I just suck it up (not literally) and let him try it out? He insists that he doesn’t care and/or think about her or what he used to stick where. But I still can’t decide. Bestow your wisdom on me…or just give me a really good cut/blow someone up joke to make me feel better. Thanks!

Amanda

Dear Amanda,

Sex should be fun.

Sex is most fun when both people are enjoying it.

So no — if it really is a turnoff for you, then don’t point him at your pooper, especially not over fear of some ex who he already decided wasn’t good enough. Guide him to something else, something that really gets you going, a position or touch or whatever, and make that the experience he craves in bed. Trust me, it’ll be hotter for him if it’s really hot for you, too — and trying to do something you just aren’t into? Not hot.

And finally, a good relationship isn’t just about what you do in bed. From what I can see, you are both cooler AND more rad for being willing to put his needs ahead of your own in an effort to make him happy. So he’d better appreciate it, or I’ll send Aunt Becky over to cut him AND blow him up. (I know, weak, but I’m just not as funny as Aunt Becky, if you can believe that.)

–d

Go Ask THE DAVER!

My best friend has depression.  Not currently controlled by medication level depression. Evil, soul-sucking Dementor-level, capital D, Depression.  Besides listening, and being there for her (which I am trying to do, & hope I am doing enough of), how else can I help?

I’ve never had depression myself, so I feel completely incompetent here, and all of the “advice” I’ve gotten so far is in the “just be there” vein.  I’m HERE, but she doesn’t exactly always want me here.  I’m listening, but she’s sick of talking.  Any advice – from you or your pranksters – would be much appreciated.

Depression is a dog from hell.

I’m a sufferer myself, so all I can say is that you have to remember that depression changes how we feel about the smallest things fundamentally — when I’m depressed, I look at a computer and sigh and feel like it’s draining me just to think about it. When I’m not, I passionately solve problems with technology; it’s my job!

The same thing goes for my feelings about interacting with people. I will disappear into a hole, reading Twitter and — get this — desperately wishing that someone would notice how lonely and crappy I feel and reach out to me. But I don’t say a word. And if someone DOES reach out I probably wouldn’t respond except to claim that everything’s all right. It’s completely irrational and stupid. But that’s what depression does! And it’s self-fulfilling once it gets a hold of you.

So the important thing is, does she recognize her symptoms? Is she seeking treatment, and it just isn’t quite enough yet? Or is she denying it?

If she’s getting treatment, then all you can do is encourage her to stick with it. Sometimes it can take years to work out the right balance, but if she goes off her meds or skips therapy sessions then try to help get her back on the horse.

If not, then encourage her to get help. I can’t stress this enough: it took a LOT of gentle nudges and convincing to get me to go, but I’ve had a lot of good years thanks to it.

And here I lean on the Pranksters for further advice!

————

Aunt Becky, my love

I often randomly IM you on AIM and ask you little questions, or just talk about little nonsensical things with you. I understand you have children and as much as I would enjoy having a chance to just sit down and talk with you one on one, I realize you need to tend to their needs, your needs, and your 8 million plus Orchids’ needs.

I just read your Go Ask Aunt Becky about the woman who has depression. I am definitely feeling a bit of the same. I can’t snap out of it.

I was on antidepressants for a year, but I hated them, they actually made me miserable. I had quit taking the antidepressants (had a major crash) and quit taking my birthcontrol as well. I figured ingesting so many hormones was just fucking with me.

I felt a hell of a lot better afterwards. For about a month.

I am, in fact, more cheerful and much happier at home and with my relationship. I usually have no problems getting off my buttocks and going to the store or cleaning the house but, and there’s always a but! (heh heh..butt)

I cannot, for the life of me, get the motivation to go to school.

I go to a vocational school to learn to cut hair. So, basically I’m paying about 10k to work for free. I enjoy the work itself.

I love cutting hair, coloring it, styling it, etc. I just hate the people there.

My “coworkers”/”classmates”, the teachers. It’s like being in highschool s that one word or two?) all over again. We’re supposed to have theory on Wednesday and Thursday mornings. I stopped going a long time ago because it was just 3 hours of gossip. Talking about the students not there, mocking them, laughing at how they can’t do something.

I should point out that they’re speaking in a language I am not fluent in. I do understand what they’re saying, although I make it seem that I am clueless and stupid.

They’re very racist towards me. Most of the people I have met are racist towards anyone of a different nationality. If you are not fluent in the language, they are even more racist towards you.

It’s common that you meet someone at the bar and you’re a tourist or you’re not native, the first thing they ask you is “Why are you here” and then they ask you “When are you leaving?”

It’s happened to me on many occasions. I am even a citizen here, and it makes me crazy.
It’s horribly depressing and I just don’t know what to do anymore. My husband is worried about me and my father is being a dick. I have no idea how to handle this situation in a way that is socially acceptable.


If I’m lucky, I get to move back to the USA by the end of this year, but there are no certainties. I have nothing definite to look forward to to ease my troubles.

I’ve considered going to see a shrink, just to have someone to talk to about all of it. I just have an issue of having these expectations of said shrink. For instance I want them to ask me questions, talk to me, tell me what they think, see if they have advice to help me target these feelings.


I’m not sure if I am angry or if I am depressed.

I’m rambling and confused. I do get enraged over small, stupid little things. To the point of wanting to throw a bottle of bourbon through the funeral parlor window… (I hope you get the reference).

What do I do!?

-Gone to HEL

Dear Gone to HEL,

Firstly, let me just say that being frustrated and put off by gossiping racist fuckhead morons seems like a pretty reasonable reaction to your situation. I used to work in an office which was a lot more like a frat house than an office, including hazing and all the other BS.

At first, I thought that it was just a job and I would just ignore the antics and get the experience I wanted…but after a while I found myself straddling a fence: I wasn’t participating in the antics so I wasn’t respected and not included in the decisions I should have been. So I’d participate some, but then I felt I was betraying my own values. It wore me down and plunged me into the worst depressive time in my life.

I eventually quit and found another job, but I also got help for my depression. In doing so, I was able to make better decisions about what I wanted, and I was able to find a job a really liked — I have been there ever since.

So — step one: get through the depression symptoms. Once you can think about it clearly, then you can take a look at whether this school or career choice is right for you; perhaps this is only a step to tide you over until you find what you really want to do. But the important thing is to take a step. If the therapist isn’t what you wanted, try another one; if you had a bad reaction to one drug, try another. Doing nothing will feel much worse.

————-

I am 27 and I have been in two real relationships.  I’ve dated here and there but these two relationships were the serious ones.  Both lasted around three years.  The problem with this is they were both highly abusive relationships.  My partners were brilliant people but also mean, angry, and negative.  I spent most of both of those relationships being told what to do and paying high emotional and sometimes physical consequences for it.

I have taken almost a year off of having a serious relationship and have recently started to really fall for a guy.  There are many things that are different even at the beginning of the relationship.  He asks my opinions and seems to want to hear the answers.  He doesn’t push me when I don’t agree with him.  He has a career and future goals.  Really, he seems much different than my previous partners.

And I am different now.  I have been going to therapy and taking medications and doing all the things that are supposed to make you a better decision maker.

I can’t shake that I was the common denominator in my previous relationships though.  I don’t think I caused them to act the way they did but I let them.  I stayed for years in relationships that literally almost killed me.  How do I trust my judgment now and can I even actually trust my judgment at this point?  How do I know that this guy doesn’t suck just as much as my last two partners?

Okay, so look: the fact is, you simply won’t know for sure. But you DO know what you went through those last times, and you know that you don’t want to go through it again, right? So make yourself a promise RIGHT NOW: you will not stand for a mean, angry, negative person in your life.

If things change with this guy, if you see it going down that road, then you turn right around and walk out that door. As I said in my earlier response, depression makes you irrational, and it makes it seem so much easier to deal with what you already are dealing with than to make an unknown change — and THAT is likely to be more the common denominator than you as a person.

So, it sounds like this guy has some qualities that show he is deserving of a chance — I’d say the best thing you can do to be more confident in your judgment is to exercise it! Tread lightly, build the core friendship that a good relationship is founded on, and enjoy yourself.

Today is today, and you are more aware, and you deserve to be with someone who treats you well. Don’t let the past hold you back, but don’t lose the lessons you learned from it either. Stick with your meds and your therapy, and just remember to never again compromise yourself the way you did in the past. I wish you luck!

———

And if you want to vote for Your Aunt Becky, who I graciously nominated for Funniest Blogger, you can do so here. Voting is once per day per person until July 11.

Go Ask The Daver

I’m back — Did you miss me? Let’s raise our coffee mugs and beer steins and whatever else you have to Aunt Becky, who is out of Internet coverage and has recruited me to fill in as only your friendly neighborhood The Daver can. Thanks to all who sent Daver-friendly questions! Now gather ’round, gather ’round, and let’s all use our inside voices today, because The Daver is trying to catch up on his sleep thanks to being on Mr. Mom duty for several days.

Dear The Daver,

As my topic implies, I am dating someone who is not my baby’s father.

Since I know that you met your son Ben when he was 2, and therefore did not biologically create him, (or if you did your sperm are AMAZING,) here is my question:

When you and Aunt Becky first got together, how did you handle situations in which people assumed, seeing all three of you together, that you were a happy little family? Although we have been friends for a long time, our relationship is very new and it gets awkward when people who are not in the know congratulate him on the baby, or want to take a picture of the three of us.

He doesn’t seem to mind, but it’s gotta be a little weird for the guy…he doesn’t have any children of his own and I don’t want him to freak out when people just thrust him into the daddy role.

Is there a graceful way to handle this? I feel like just letting people assume he’s her daddy is maybe doing him an injustice, but to correct new aquaintances makes THEM feel awkward and apologetic.

Help me out, here, The Daver.

-Manda

Hi Manda,

I know that when people thought Ben was mine, I was always kinda flattered. I mean, I didn’t want to take credit, but he and I were Best Buds from the day we met, so I was perfectly happy to be in pictures or have someone guess wrong. I mean, sure, it was a little disconcerting at first — here I was, walking in to this person’s life, and I wasn’t expecting to become a capital-D-Dad so quickly, but in a way it just…happened. I loved him and wanted the best for him, and my biggest fear was measuring up to that.

Changing the way others perceive things is impossible; we had to put my last name on Ben’s school records because otherwise the school calls and asks for “Mrs. Ben’s-last-name” (NOT what she wants to be called, thankyouverymuch), and the mailman marks mail for him with a “here?”. To this day people comment on Ben’s resemblance to me. If I tried to correct all of them, I’d never have a conversation that didn’t involve explaining my ‘special’ relationship with my son. So I just say, “He sure is good looking, isn’t he?” and laugh later on.

So I’d say the only person you need to worry about is your boyfriend — talk to him about those awkward moments, have a laugh about the way people assume stuff, and tell him what YOU expect. Then when it happens again — because it WILL — you can give him a knowing look and he can play the role as much or as little as he’s comfortable doing, because he knows where you and your daughter stand — and those are the people he’s most concerned about anyhow.

-d

Hey, The Daver!

I’ve been dating this really awesome guy since January. We’ve seen each other every weekend ever since, we call each other many times a day, he has my house key and his toothbrush is hanging on my bathroom. I’ve met his parents a couple of times and he has met all of my friends.

And still, the last time we’ve talk about this (in the beginning of april), he insists that he’s not my boyfriend, because he doesn’t want to have a girlfriend. But we agreed that we aren’t allowed to date -or sleep- with other people.

The Daver, what the heck does he want?? I mean, he says he doesn’t want to be my boyfriend when he clearly is! He’s even thinking about all the stuff he will buy when he moves in with me!

Is it to lame to ask him if he still doesn’t want to go formal with me? Is he afraid of compromise, or just the idea of a girlfriend? Is he just waiting for a better chic?

Love,
The NOT girlfriend.

Oh, NOT girlfriend,

Alas, I don’t have psychic powers and I can’t see into his head to tell you for sure, but I have to ask you this: what do YOU want? If using the terms ‘boyfriend’ or ‘girlfriend’ to describe your relationship is important to you, then it’s important to understand why he’s so adamant not to be called those terms. Perhaps a previous relationship went too fast into those terms and it spooked him? Maybe he doesn’t want to jinx a good thing? Getting guys to talk about this stuff can be tricky, but if it’s upsetting you then he needs to know, and he needs to know why. Rather than just asking him to go ‘formal’, sit him down and share with him how it makes you feel, how he makes you feel, and what it would mean to you to use those terms, and give him an opportunity to open up about it. If he shares honestly, give him a BJ as a reward*, to encourage further sharing. 🙂

What you don’t want to have is the doubt you feel about this seemingly minor terminology issue turn into doubt about the relationship as a whole. If the terms don’t match the usual terms, that’s one thing (Becky calls me “fart-face” or “asshole” more than “husband”) but if the commitments you expect aren’t there on both sides, that’s another, and you don’t want that to cloud the good stuff, or fester into something more serious.

He’d better not be waiting for a ‘better’ chick, though. Besides the fact that he’ll be waiting a long time, because OBVIOUSLY, that’s just a dick move, and we may need to put his balls in a jar.

-d

*that one’s for you, SciFi Dad. But I’m only half kidding. Less than half.

Dear The Daver,

(I’m a recent lurker, first-time poster, I love this blog!)
I have a problem because my boyfriend has a problem. He recently read a list of symptoms on The Internet and found that the crappy, omg, awful doldrum feeling he’s had for over a year is chronic depression. Except for suicidal tendencies, the list reads like a mini-biography. He has mentioned going to a therapist and even gone so far as looking up our local HMO approved shrinks in the area…but hasn’t made any appointments. I graduated from college with a psych major so I’m obviously all “oo-rah! go talk to a shrink!” but I don’t want to be pushy with him. I just want him to be happier, so how do I encourage therapy without saying “you’re a really unhappy dude, please make an appointment”? A guy’s perspective is much appreciated and I can’t really ask his friends on this one. Thanks in advance!

-MiniPeds-

Hey -MiniPeds-,

From personal experience being this very boyfriend, let me tell you: make him an appointment, and take him to it. This is not something that gets better on its own, and while depressed, it is unlikely that the idea of getting better registers enough to stir real action in him. Obviously, if you make the appointment and he outright refuses or gets upset with you, you can take a step back, but chances are pretty good that he’s not doing it because he’s just…not doing it. We depressed people tend to feel like making appointments not mandated by jobs or life is an awful lot of effort, and we’re already spending most of what we’ve got on the other stuff, so maybe next week I’ll feel better…

Now that my symptoms are managed, I’m so thankful that Becks made me go. And that she called me an idiot for stopping my meds when I felt better, and took care of me when I crashed after stopping my meds (even though she told me I was an idiot), and got me back on them. I learned my lesson, as most people who face this kind of thing do: the hard way. Having her to get me through the consequences of my mistakes changed everything.

So good luck. He’s lucky to have you.

-d

As always, agree, disagree, and help these kind folks out better than me in the comments!

OH EM GEE The PRESSURE

When I dropped her off at the airport the other day, Becky gave me a smooch, hopped out of the car, grabbed her carryon, and started to turn toward the entrance, when she stopped.

She looked back to me and said, “Hey! I asked a few people to guest post but they might not have had time to put anything together. If you don’t get something, just post something for me, okay?”

“But-”

“OK, I’m off! See you soon!” she blew one last kiss to me and scurried in to the terminal to get strip-searched or whatever by TSA. I looked up and as I started to drive back home, I could feel the weight growing: but the Pranksters….they are accustomed to QUALITY! And I’m just a hack who posts a few times a month. How will I measure up? How will I fulfill the RSS-pectations of all these lovely people who crave their daily dose of Aunt Becky??

So I did the same thing I did in college: I procrastinated. I tweeted, I watched Fringe, I played with the kidlets, I poked around on my computer. And now here we are! The time has come! I must…POST!

OK. The Mailbox Incident, or Ways I Hope I Never Mess Up My Kids.

I was maybe 7 years old. My parents were teachers, in a church-run school, so I spent a lot of time hanging around the church waiting for them to finish up whatever it was they were doing. And then, when they would say that it was time to leave, someone would catch them in the hallway and they would chat for a while longer. So I’d meander away, trying to drag them with sheer force of will away from whomever they were chatting with and out to the car.

One day, a pleasant spring day not unlike today ( see, there WAS a tie-in!), my mom was talking about God-knows-what boring stuff, and I wandered outside to the courtyard, thinking about getting home and riding my bike or something. I was into spy stories, and I’d read about spies leaving notes in special places, so I started imagining where my spy contacts would have left me notes. Near the door of the building was GIGANTIC mailbox, like a foot tall and two feet deep, and I thought to myself, “this flag on the mailbox — I never see it used — this would be perfect to tell someone that something was waiting!” So I flipped up the flag, and started to turn and hide while my imaginary spy friends picked up the imaginary note I left them, when —

My mom came running out of the door! “David!” she almost shouted, and I got that tingly feeling like I knew something bad was about to happen.

“David! You can’t touch that flag! That’s tampering with the mail, that’s a federal offense!” she said, and I felt weak in the knees and wanted to cry. I *knew* what a federal offense meant. It meant TORTURE so they could make me TALK! If they caught me I would never see my family again! I quickly flipped the flag back down and, fighting back fearful tears, walked to the car with my mom.

To this day, whenever I put mail out in my mailbox, I feel compelled to look around Very Carefully before flipping up the flag. They might be watching.

Cruisin’: Your Aunt Heather

OK, Pranksters, since Becky is off in the ocean somewhere living it up and Internet access on a cruise is like 17 gazillion dollars a minute, she begged convinced the lovely Heather Spohr of The Spohrs Are Multiplying to fill in for her today. Which is totally RAD.

So enjoy, and don’t forget to ask me questions for this Sunday’s Go Ask The Daver!

— your The Daver.

So that lucky vagina Becky is on a cruise, leaving the rest of us at home, on dry land, totally not enjoying all you can eat food or questionably dressed passengers. Or tons of things to do, gorgeous pools, and warm weather. Or people waiting on you hand and foot, beautiful views, and did I mention the all you can eat food?

Some people have all the luck.

I have been on a cruise once in my life. When I was 21 and a senior in college, one of my friends got the idea that a cruise would be a great way to spend spring break. It caught on like wildfire, and suddenly everyone I knew was going. Well, OK not EVERYONE I knew, but there were twenty three people going. I begged my parents for the money to go, (IT WILL BE OUR LAST HURRAH! WE’RE SENIORS! WHY DON’T YOU LOOOOOVE MEEEEEEEEEEE?!), and I soon found myself on a cruise ship to Mexico.

I get insane motion sickness – cars, planes, boats, you name it, I get sick. Before I left for the cruise, my doctor wrote me a prescription for a seasickness patch that went right behind my earlobe. It was AMAZING. I was never sick, even when the seas were crazy and all my friends had their heads in buckets. I felt invincible.

You know what made me feel even MORE invincible? Alcohol. I didn’t know it at the time, but sea sickness patch…enhanced…the effects of alcohol. They should probably put that on the label. After two drinks, I was good to go. Of course, being 21 years old, I never stopped at two. That would have been RESPONSIBLE.

On one of the first nights, I had a few glasses of champagne, and I suddenly had a moment of clarity: I was related to George W. Bush! I started to tell all my friends. “You guys…I have to tell you that he’s my uncle. It’s awkward sometimes because we differ politically, but he’s family and I am suuuuuper close with the twins.” I told strangers. I told the wait staff. I pretty much convinced everyone I was related to the president. And by convinced everyone, I mean I became notorious as a total drunk whack job.

Another night, I enjoyed a few more glasses of champers, then went dancing. After we left the boat’s club, we went up to the late-night buffet. While we waiting for our drinks to arrive, I became completely parched. So I reached for the water on the table and brought it up to my mouth. So what if it happened to be a vase full of flowers?

Needless to say, I have yet to live either of those incidents down. And now I’m pretty sure my parents are going to demand I repay them the money they spent.

Becky, if you try to convince people you’re related to Obama, I will love you forever. But don’t drink vase water. It doesn’t taste good.

The Daver Speaks Out!

God knows why, but today Becky told me that what she really wanted for her birthday was for me to write a guest post on MommyWantsVodka. I think she felt bad for me when she saw me notice her ogling a handbag with more more digits in the price than my car payment and turn ashen. And if I, pale as I am, turn more white, you know it’s serious.

Anyhow, she informed me in her Aunt Becky way (the not-so-subtle drip-drip method: “You’re going to post on my blog right? Tomorrow?… Hey Daver, how’s my blog post coming? Are you done with it yet?”) that I would be writing something for her birthday. It had to be something good, an explanation to Her Internets of how I put up with savor every moment of being married to the talented and dead sexy Aunt Becky. ( She’s not MY Aunt Becky, that’d be creepy, she’s just Becky to me. AND still Rock-n-Roll to me, too. AND only a woman. AND more than a woman. ) So here we are. It’s my turn to raise the roof off the mutha, to tell it like it really is…

…and I don’t know what to say.

I mean, there are tons of things to say; I have never known anyone who has made a more positive impact on my life. I am healthier because she made me see the doc. I am successful at work because I have her support at home, and I have wonderful children because she’s my teammate in raising them the way we think is best. She drives me crazy, and I drive her crazy, but if either of us is upset at the other we’re both misesrable about it until we work it out. Despite all the books and advice and people wondering about what makes a relationship work, we just…work. It’s refreshing not to need to think about it too much.

Way back when, I was single, with an apartment in the city, and she was commuting from the far Western ‘burbs to be at her clinicals by 6am. We went on a date, and that night I offered for her to stay at my apartment the night before clinicals so she could get an extra couple hours of sleep. I think at the time I just thought I was being nice, she was a friend of a friend and needed a hand, right? But as I look back I realize that I really just wanted an excuse to see her again, and deep down I already knew she was special to me.

It’s just…something about her. And honestly, you guys know already what it is, because you keep coming back here and reading her writings, laughing along and getting that feeling that she’s right there with ya. ‘Cause, well, she is. Her blog is a reflection of who she is, who we are; we’re not afraid to laugh at ourselves and we think our kids are the best and there’s very little in life that can’t be made better with a good laugh, some good music, and maybe a little vodka to take the edge off.

So, Happy Birthday, baby. One more year of living with your Sausages, being married to your Daver, thanks for being you and putting up with us, making us laugh, and putting us first. We may not always tell you, but you make us who we are, and that makes us pretty damn great.

I’d better close this out now. Becky’s hovering, telling me that maybe SHE should just write the damn thing for me, because I’m too slow. I told her that I was already over 600 words and she told me that was “decent”, with a smirk like it was decent for a moron with a hangover. I laughed and gave her the finger.

Welcome to our family.