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  • Erin P. Griffith

It's a "gaggle" of geese, a "herd" of antelope, a "colony" of ants


We are 6 days into holiday break. 2 days post Christmas.

Today, I have helped put together 3 lego sets, made Nom Nom's lipgloss (and cleaned up the heinous mess), helped paint two ceramic horses and one cupcake coin bank, put batteries in and got one Furby working, found one stuffed dog AND one missing Shopkin, put three checks in the bank, picked up two extra controllers for the PS4 and now, here I sit, in front of the play room television, trying to program our new "PS4" and the kids new "Lego Dimensions" game with both of them riding shotgun next to the bean bag chair I'm sitting in.

Both saying "Are you done yet? How about now? Are you done? How long will it be until you are done? Are you done yet? Can I hold the controller? When will it be done updating? Are you done yet? When is it my turn!?

I look at the clock and realize that it's 8 o'clock and I have forgotten to make dinner and feed everyone. My husband's hostile/hungry angry vibes are finally penetrating through my carefully constructed shield of concentration as he yells "Who wants a hot pretzel?!"

I love him... because he's a problem solver.

After three hours, two updates, building a portal, four figures, a batmobile, and running through the first fifteen minutes of "Lego Dimensions" four separate times, I hand the controllers off to my offspring.

I fall back onto the couch, my "wing men" having relocated to their bean bag chairs on the floor, and head to the happy place in my head where I cannot hear anything. It's the same place I go when Nick Jr. or the Disney channel is on or during staff meetings at work. And I begin thinking about this year and what an absolute cluster it has been.

2016 has been real, it's been hell, and it's REALLY been HELL! I cannot wait to see it go.

It took my dog. It took my father AND my husband's grandmother within two weeks of each other, forever changing the perception of Thanksgiving and the holiday season for the both Eric and I.

It took the only princess I every wanted to be (Carrie Fisher), the best potions master Hogwarts ever had (Alan Rickman), Mrs. Brady (Florence Henderson), Ohio's favorite astronaut (John Glenn), Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder), the author who brazenly shone light on racial inequality (Harper Lee), a holocaust survivor who enlightened so many on the horrors of Nazi crimes (Elie Weisel), the only guy who could pull off having a symbol as a name (Prince), and countless others...and I mean countless. The list is quite lengthy.

We saw a contentious election, the results of which are slowly sending the United States headlong down the plot-line of the movie Idiocracy (which is a poorly acted, but well written flick if you haven't had the pleasure).

There has been little time for quiet contemplation or relaxation. Unless you count the two-ish hours I spent in a dark movie theater watching Star Wars: Rogue One, where my daughter passed out in my lap fifteen minutes into the movie (best $8.50 I have ever spent-normally only Sherlock, Dr. Who, or the lilting voice of Roy Dotrice as he reads Game of Thrones: Song of Ice and Fire will put her out that fast) and I got to watch the whole movie without her crawling all over me and then demanding to go to the restroom three or four times. **(See footnote about my daughters obsession with bathrooms)**

It wasn't really equivalent to meditation, but it was as close as I was going to get...and there were Junior Mints and Gummy Bears, which made it even better.

All in all, my anxiety medication and I have been riding a fine line together for the last few months. Me always on the verge of losing my shit and my medication pulling me back by my hair, slapping me, and saying "Keep it together man!! We have too much to do for you to go all "padded room and straight jacket" on us!"

Here's to a better 2017!

Laters!

**My daughter has always been obsessed with bathrooms. Whenever we go somewhere new, she has to check out the bathroom. We took her house shopping with us two years ago and she made sure to pee at every. single. house. We had to force her not to pee in every bathroom at every house. At places like the movie theater, she will go multiple times and use a different stall each time. It doesn't matter if its a vine covered, boarded up, dirty, greasy, suspicious looking podunk gas station at midnight, like Indiana Jones, we must venture to the bathroom and try out the potty.

It is my hope that someday she will find the "holy grail" of toilets and her years of toilet exploration will come to an end OR she comes to the inevitable conclusion that all potties are about the same. But until then...if you need to find me, check the ladies room...I'll be the one standing outside the stall listening to a little girl do the twelve point quality inspection of the bathroom.


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