Nerd Hell and the newbie

Last weekend I did something I swore I would never do. I attended Salt Lake City’s Comic Con. From what I knew of these conventions I thought they were full of the biggest nerds in the world! I never figured I was the type of person who could fit in at Comic Con. Where I house certain nerd-like qualities, I still thought this was too much for me!

But despite all my concerns, it just took 2 words to change my mind. Those words: Dean Cain! I was IN LOVE with Dean Cain when I was around 12 and he was playing Superman on Lois and Clark. Those years were not an easy time in my life. I don’t know anyone who can say the preteen and early teen years were their favorite years! I was very awkward! But he made my little heart flutter! I felt that I owed it to my 12 year old self to have the opportunity to meet him.

Since I was going anyway, I found a few other celebrities I wouldn’t mind meeting, although I still had a pretty one track mind about why I was going down. But I found out that Alex Kingston was going to be there and thought it would be cool to meet her. She is on Doctor Who, which I have never seen. But she was also on ER, which I did watch faithfully! I also last minute found out Joey Fatone from Nsync was going to be there. And what girl who group in the 90s wouldn’t jump at the chance to meet Joey!

I booked tickets for Saturday because Todd had a conference out of town until Friday night. But what I failed to remember is that it was Easter weekend. Not only did we have company coming in but my kids had several egg hunts going on. So the morning started early with a hunt and a family breakfast. Then I set off for Salt Lake City. When I arrived at Comic Con I was terrified! There were so many people! Most of them were in costumes of characters I had never heard of! I knew I stuck out like a sore thumb. I felt like I was walking around with a neon sign that said “newbie” above my head! But my first fan meeting with Alex Kingston was starting soon so I braved the crowds to what I found out was even more terrifying crowds waiting to meet her as well! At one point I texted my sister saying I was stuck in “Nerd Hell”! A woman in line behind me asked me what Doctor Who episode was my favorite. Because of course that was the reason I was waiting to meet her! I stated that I had never seen an episode of Doctor Who, so that would be hard to determine. Literally the crowd around me fell silent and all slowly turned around to look at me. Seriously it was like a scene out of a horror movie!  I instantly regretted my statement! I was hit with hundreds of death stares! Then they silently all turned away from me one by one. That’s right, I was shunned by the Whovians! Which normally wouldn’t concern me. But I was in very unknown territory, so I would have appreciated! But an hour into the shunning I did finally get to meet Alex Kingston.  For a whole 10 seconds. Yeah, 10 seconds! She was very sweet though. And didn’t mind that I hadn’t seen Doctor Who!


After meeting Alex Kingston I wandered through the booths like a scared little puppy! But then I found the ABC4 booth and got to meet Don Hudson. He’s one of my favorite reporters so that was cool! I asked to take a picture with him, and he jumped over a table to take it. He even spent a few minutes talking about reporters from the past and the election. Then I saw Joey! He was at his table jumping around with a backwards cap on. Its exactly how I always pictured him! When it was my turn to meet him I felt like I was in high school again! I got all nervous and giggly! He was so funny and very nice.  He had a dance party at his table with a DJ and everything.  There were a bunch of skinny 20 year olds dancing with him. I was totally annoyed not only because they could still get away with wearing low jeans and teeny t-shirts but because I knew all those girls were way too young to appreciate the magnitude of who Nsync was! They were in diapers when I was blasting their CDs in my little Dodge Neon! But I didn’t stay annoyed for long. Because out of the corner of my eye I saw HIM!


There he was! Dean Cain! He was at the table next to Joey’s signing autographs. And he was just as beautiful as he was when I was 12! After looking at the pics I had taken earlier I decided my shirt made me look so fat. And I didn’t want him to see me looking fat! After all, he was Superman! So I went and bought a “Metropolis University” shirt. I figured only the true Superman fans would understand it! My little heart was beating so fast when I was in line! Then it was my turn. He held out his hand and introduced himself to me. Like I didn’t already know! And he asked what my name was. I told him that when I was 12 I used to cut his pictures out of the TV Guide and hang it on my wall. I had a whole collage! I told him he was my Superman. And then he stood up and gave me a big hug! We were told not to touch the stars but he didn’t care. Then on my picture he wrote “I’ll be your Superman any time” on it. By that point he had me melted into a big puddle of Amy! My knees started to go weak, I’m surprised I didn’t start to drool!  I mean this guy had charm oozing out of every inch of his perfectly chiseled body! Then we took pictures together. Not only did he take pictures but he took multiple pics with me. Then when we were saying goodbye he kissed me on the cheek and said how much of a pleasure it was to meet me. He had me completely warped! I texted my sister again about how wonderful he was. And luckily she helped me come back down to reality by reminding me that he had also played Scott Petersen in Lifetime’s “Lacy Petersen story”. You know, the one where he killed his wife and unborn child. Aw, who am I kidding?! I still floated all the way home!  He made that whole trip! I was so impressed by him. I wish all stars could be like him. My 12 year old self couldn’t have been happier! Thanks to him, Nerd Hell turned into Nerd Heaven! Ha, Nerd Heaven?! Wow, maybe I am nerdy enough! Anyway, my view of Comic Con has turned 180. Everyone has their Superman. And thanks to events like this people get the tremendous opportunity to meet them.




Cover your eyes!

I live in Utah. For the most part its a pretty decent place to live. Its beautiful, safe, affordable. It doesn’t always fit my personality but I can’t complain too much. But Utah has one kind of obnoxious flaw. It cannot make up its mind!! On a typical spring day I wake up to rain, drive kids to school in snow, pick up kids in the sunshine, and run evening errands in the rain again. So layering clothing is crucial while getting dressed in the morning. But a few days ago I ran into a clothing issue I hadn’t planned on. When I got dressed I put on athletic clothes because I knew I would be going to the gym later that night. So I slipped on a sports bra I have had for a while too long. Clearly it was one purchased before the mastectomy gave me an opportunity to um…..move up in size! So it wasn’t long before I realized it was way too small. My arms started going numb and I was getting dizzy. Unfortunately I realized this was a problem while I was driving….on main street! But worrying that I would pass out while driving with my kids, I knew I had to get this thing off! Now logically you would think I simply pulled over and removed it. But no, I wasn’t thinking that clearly. Obviously the lack of oxygen was getting to me. I happened to stop at the corner of Main and 14th North right when the light was turning red. Which all of you know if you hit that light right when it changes you have a good 5 minutes before it changes back to green. So I figured I had the perfect opportunity to quickly slip it off without anyone noticing. Unfortunately while trying to yank the thing off under my t-shirt (which was the only other layer I was wearing because it was that time during the day when its sunny) I got a little hung up. And without realizing it one of “the girls” had snuck her way out. I quickly realized she was out saying hello, yanked the bra off, and put her back in place thinking I was in the clear. That is until I looked to my left and saw the face of a sweet little old man in the passenger seat of the car next to me, completely red faced and trying to pretend he didn’t see me. But he and I both knew he had. And it wasn’t just because of the death glare his I presume wife was shooting me from the drivers side of their car! I was mortified!! I looked straight ahead and prayed the light would hurry up and turn. It was the longest light in the history of lights! But an eternity later it turned and I got out of there as fast as I could. When we got home I quickly got the kids in the house and closed the curtains. I was sure a cop would be coming to my door any minute to charge me with indecent exposure! About an hour later I finally felt safe enough to emerge from the house to do one thing: throw that bra away! Word to the wise: if your bra is cutting off the circulation to you head, PULL OVER!

My miracle

Yesterday my son Benson turned 7 years old. I can’t believe he’s already 7. Every year around this time I start reminiscing about not only his birth but the years leading up to his birth. We wanted to have a family early on in our marriage. But we soon found out it was not going to be as easy as we thought. For years we struggled with infertility and it was incredibly difficult. There were so many tears, so many words thrown out in anger and frustration. It was a challenging time for us. But finally, 7 years into our marriage I became pregnant! Telling our families was a magical moment for us. We all had waited so long for this to happen. He was so prayed for and wanted not only us, but all of our friends and families. He was everybody’s miracle!

The pregnancy was hard. I was SOOOOO sick! And when my due date finally rolled around he was quite happy right where he was at. Then at 40 weeks and 5 days, he finally decided he was ready to greet his very over eager parents. Unfortunately, where even 5 days late he was a perfect 7 lbs 5 oz, his head was about 110% on the charts. And he decided to turn that massive head while in the birth canal and get stuck. The doctor tried to turn his head with no luck. But after 3 hours of pushing (and a very embarrassing barf out incident) he wasn’t budging and his heart rate was starting to fall. I was given a series of options and I begged the doctor to just get him out safely. Finally he was delivered with the help of forcepts. And not a moment too soon. He was purple and his cord was wrapped around his neck twice. I learned later his first apgar score was a 1. I can’t tell you how terrifying it was to not hear him cry when he came out. But a fabulous team of doctors and nurses got him breathing again in a few minutes. And I can’t tell you the rush of emotions that came over me when they finally put that little miracle baby on my chest. It makes me tear up just thinking about it. We only got to hold him a few minutes and then they had to take him to the nicu. He had a rough time for a while. Because of the forcepts delivery he had palsy on one side of his face. Not only could he not latch but he couldn’t even suck from a bottle. We had to feed him from a tube and I had to pump constantly. I came home from the hospital so exhausted. Because he had bruising from his delivery he had to be under the lights for a full week. But he hated it and would scream unless somebody was touching him. The bruises and palsy eventually went away and he started nursing better. But I wasn’t getting enough milk in and I couldn’t figure out why he was always screaming. It took us 6 weeks of non stop crying for us to figure out why. But finally he was growing and was happy. He brought us so much joy. Every first was so exciting and I loved it.

When I was pregnant  we spent a day with my mom’s side of the family. My uncle and his wife had a son around maybe 6 or 7. This kid was mean! He swore at his mom, ignored all the rules, etc. His mom later told me that he was their miracle. They weren’t supposed to be able to have kids, but they got him. I remember thinking with my naïve mind that he was a waste of a miracle. It was a very stupid thought. Benson is sweet, loving, and so much fun. He’s super active and rough. He’s all boy! But he’s so sensitive too. When people make fun of him or don’t include him he hurts. And sometimes that hurts turns to anger. And then even though he is being bullied, he is treated as the bully. He had a terrible summer last year. The people who he had spent his entire life being friends with him didn’t want to be his friends anymore. Its ok, kids grow and evolve. They change their minds and their likes. But all of the sudden his friends didn’t like him. They silently bullied him and picked him apart.  I held him so many times as he cried and it broke my heart. But because of the way he reacted to his pain nobody saw the hurt he was feeling. He was always left out and isolated and didn’t even feel comfortable playing in his own front yard. So he spent a lot of time in our house, watching the other kids play from the window. And I’m ashamed to say this, but to make peace I sometimes didn’t take his side. I feel terrible about that now.

This boy is amazing! He’s so intelligent. He continues to amaze me everyday with the things he can do. He has so many dreams and aspirations. And he cares so much for people. Last spring a friend of his gave him a dollar bill. He knew we were struggling to find a car for our growing family in our price range and offered his dollar to us for our new car. He has a huge heart!  So on his birthday this year I vowed to be a better mom to him.  I promised to look out for him better and let him be a kid. He is so special, and I promised to always remember that. Benson is a miracle. He is our gift. And those people who can’t see that are missing out. I will never lose sight of that again. I love you Ben!

Marriage reality style

Tonight I planned to write my opinions about Donald Trump and the decline of the average United States citizen’s intelligence level who thinks this man won’t get us all killed. But that can wait for another time!

Lately  TV has been very cruel to me. My favorite shows are all coming to an end. Pretty Little Liars is in its last season, I’m pretty sure by the latest promos Law and Order: SVU is headed in the same direction. And Mike and Molly….don’t even get me started on the fall of Mike and Molly! So sometimes watching reality TV for me is a great way to enjoy a show without getting too involved or attached. You always know at the end of the season it will be over. No surprises! I don’t watch The Bachelor, Big Brother, or even Survivor. I gave up The Biggest Loser when Jillian Michaels left and the idiots from Teen Mom and 16 and pregnant get on my nerves faster than a cat who is trying to sit on my keyboard while I type! Which incidentally is what my cat was just doing, and it was very annoying! But every so often a reality show comes along that I enjoy. And even more rarely does one come along that Todd and I enjoy watching together. But one recently just happened to come along that met all our requirements! It was called Married at First Sight. It was a social experiment where therapists matched up couples that only meet each other at the alter and then become legally married. They have 6 weeks to decide to stay married or get a divorce. They chose 3 couples and matched them according to not only the things they have in common but they’re differences and they way they complimented each other. One couple, David and Ashley, was doomed from the beginning. She couldn’t get over her unattraction to him or a misunderstanding they had they she felt destroyed her trust in him. He tried just so hard, sometimes a little too hard. Then there was Vanessea and Tres. They were perfect for each other! They were destined from the start. But then there was the 3rd couple, Sam and Neil. They were my favorite from the beginning. I’m sure a lot of my reasoning for this is because they reminded me of Todd and I! Watching them brought back so many memories of the newlywed times for us. I so enjoyed watching their relationship evolve into what I saw as loving and sincere. Not everything was perfect, but we got to watch them both grow so much. Then when the final show aired, Sam confessed her love for Neil, saying she wanted to stay married and keep going. But Neil, leading her on with words like “committed” and “appreciative”, suddenly broke her heart along with every viewer rooting them on by asking for a divorce. We have closed captioning on our TV (with 3 boys, even after they go to bed they’re loud!) so I got to see him asking for divorce 2 seconds before he said it. And in that 2 seconds I had already started to cry! My heart broke right there! I couldn’t believe he had done that. Now I haven’t watched the tell all special yet, but he claimed it was because he just couldn’t get past their rocky first two  weeks. Are you kidding me?! Then the next day they meet back up at their house to pack up. Her attitude was amazing. She was upbeat and seemed ok. But having gone through a VERY similar experience I call her bluff! When Todd and I were dating we went on what was a lovely date and then on the way back he broke up with me. He said he had had a dream that we had gotten married and I wasn’t happy. I was completely blind sighted! I cried all night. But the next day we had to both attend and event we had previously committed to. All day I was up beat and positive with him. I pretended that I was just fine. But I was torn to pieces and cried for hours after saying goodbye to him that night. Then 2 days later we got back together and got married 8 months later, but that’s beside the point! Anyway, with what he said about why he chose to not stay married, there are is something I want to share with all the “Neils” out there!

I would never choose to be a newlywed again. On those days where Todd bugs me the most, I have to remind myself of that!  Yeah its a magical time to learn all the wonderful things about your partner. But its also a time to find out all those little quirks and annoyances that they have. He was driving me CRAZY by the time we boarded the plane to go home from our honeymoon. That first year was full of so many ups and downs I couldn’t keep them straight from day to day. We had our first fight over a celebrity crush I had 2 days after we got home from our honeymoon. And guess what? Almost 15 years later, we have a son who is named after that celebrity! Its also a time for your to learn about your own quirks and imperfections. I figured I was just a moody teenager whose family bugged me. After all I was just 19 when I got married. Turned out, I was just moody period. And it took a lot of hurt feelings and misunderstandings for me to figure that out. What I’m saying is it takes more than 6 weeks to establish whether or not you should be married or divorced.  I know the show can’t follow the couples for years. But if you have to get a legal follow you around forever divorce anyway, why not give it a while longer? And never ever base your whole relationship on the first few weeks of marriage. Todd and I knew each other a long time before we got married. We did not meet the day we got married. But even so our marriage would have had NO chance if we based it on the first few weeks. And since then we have fought through depression, infertility, financial ruins, medical crisis, etc. But through all the pain and frustration we did it together. And didn’t just give up after 6 weeks, breaking the heart publicly of a girl who was really trying. My point? Marriage is hard work! It’s exhausting at times. But like anything you work for, it’s worth it. Ok, marriage rant over!

Wait… more thing! While we’re on the subject of breaking hearts in a public way, I am beyond unimpressed with Neil right now. He made himself look like a real ass. And he reminded me of my father. Ha! My father would have never done that! In my eyes, tonight Neil is more hated then Trump! Well, maybe not that bad. But I’m definitely as annoyed at him as I was with the cat who wouldn’t get off the keyboard!