You may know me as Mrs. Cap’n Firepants, mother of Wonderbutt, Mrs. P.I.B., and Dimples, but my psychiatrist knows me as the woman he treats for clinical depression and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. (Believe it or not, our bulldog, Wonderbutt, and his house demolition attempts were not the cause of either of these mental illnesses.)
I wasn’t planning for these two women to collide with each other on my blog, but a few recent blog posts from other authors have brought them together.
So, today, I invite you to the somewhat disturbing dialogue between Mrs. Cap’n Firepants and Mrs. Eeyorewearsnopants (referred to in the rest of this post as Mrs. F. and Mrs. E.)
Mrs. F: One of your favorite bloggers, Aja, gave you an award at Writing and Recovering.
Mrs. E: I know. And you totally don’t deserve it.
Mrs. F: Oh geez. Are you in one of those moods again?
Mrs. E: Again? How about “still”?
Mrs. F: How about snap out of it?!!!!
Mrs. E: Yeah. That always works. I’m going back to bed.
Mrs. F: Fine. Then I will accept the award.
Mrs. E: You can’t.
Mrs. F: Why?
Mrs. E: Because you have to tell what your diagnoses are, and no one has diagnosed you with anything but a bad case of Wonderbutt.
Mrs. F: It seems like “Wonderbutt” should be a good thing, doesn’t it?
Mrs. E: There you go, roaming off the subject again. That’s why you’re never depressed. Because you can’t keep your mind still enough to obsess about how hopeless your life is.
Mrs. F: Yes, that’s definitely a weakness on my part – the inability to get pre-occupied with my meaningless existence. I’ll try to work on that.
Mrs. E: I don’t care what you do. I’m going back to bed.
Mrs. F: Wait, I thought of another diagnoses. What about my eating disorder?
Mrs. E: You mean my eating disorder?
Mrs. F: Oh, you get to have that, too?
Mrs. E: Yes, I get the great gift of three mental illnesses. Lucky me.
Mrs. F: What do I get, then?
Mrs. E: An Awards Shelf.
Mrs. F: Well, that doesn’t seem quite fair.
Mrs. E: To me, or to you?
Mrs. F: Umm. Both? I’m not sure at this point. Have you noticed Wonderbutt is really quiet right now? That usually means he’s in the middle of consuming a shoe,or a table, or something…
Mrs. E: Changing the subject again? I think someone has a bit of an attention problem – and I’m not talking about Wonderbutt.
Mrs. F: Well, stop whining about all of your problems and finish up accepting our award.
Mrs. E: I’m going to pretend you didn’t say “our”. Not that I care. But I noticed. Anyway, to accept the Strong Person Award you have to list
your my diagnoses and –
Mrs. F: Check
Mrs. E: And, post a picture of yourself, or something representing you.
Mrs. F: Crap.
Mrs. E: What’s wrong?
Mrs. F: I can’t post a picture of myself.
Mrs. E: Why?
Mrs. F: Because I made myself up.
Mrs. E: Hmm. That does pose a problem. And we both know we can’t post a picture of me.
Mrs. F: Why?
Mrs. E: Because I hate myself. Are you not paying attention? AGAIN?!!!!
Mrs F: I’m trying, but you aren’t doing a very good job of keeping my attention. Just find a darn picture, and post it.
Mrs. E: Fine. Here.
Mrs. F: Hey, that’s pretty good. We do both do that. Hide from the world, I mean. We don’t literally stick our heads under the bed. At least, I don’t.
Mrs. E: O.K. So, let’s pass this sucker on. All of these responsibilities are making me tired.
Mrs. F: Well, this part is easy. We are passing the Stronger Person Award to Miranda Gargasz, a very talented writer.
Mrs. E: You’re just giving her that because she gave you a Reader’s Appreciation Award, and she got you Freshly Pressed.
Mrs. F: No, if those were the reasons, then I would hyperlink those two items to which you just referred, but I’m not going to do that. I’m giving it to her because she has overcome a lot of obstacles in her life, and she is a very talented writer.
Mrs. E: Brown-noser.
Mrs. F: Also, since
you we suffer from depression, and she just wrote a very heartbreaking piece that touched on this very subject, I thought it would be fitting.
Mrs. E: That was sad.
Mrs. F: Yes, it was. But it’s a very real problem, and depression has been in the headlines a lot lately. Here’s another article that people should read – even though it’s not by the super-talented Miranda.
Mrs. E: Have you noticed people keep searching the web for our “John Denver and Depression” post?
Mrs. F: Now, who’s getting off the subject? I think I better go check on Wonderbutt.
Mrs. E: Fine. I think I’m going to go take my medication.
Mrs. F: We’re all grateful for that…
When I was a kid, I got an allowance. I was allowed to spend it on anything I wanted. I usually chose to spend it on candy. My idea of luxury was buying a giant chocolate bar on which I would gnaw while I sprawled out on my bed and read a Nancy Drew book.
When we went to the lake during the summer, I went to the snack bar every 15 minutes to get a cream soda or a candy necklace.
It wasn’t until I was a Junior in High School that my mother and step-dad informed me they would not be paying for college. Too late to get back all of the money I’d blown for 8 years on Hershey bars.
When I grew up, I continued wise spending and eating habits by rewarding myself with yummy food for every success and every failure that effected my daily life.
Thus, an eating disorder was born.
Our daughter, Dimples, gets an allowance, too. And she is allowed to spend it how she wants. (minus the 1/3 for charity and 1/3 for savings) Basically, she spends it on whatever she wants that we won’t buy her. I kind of worried that she would spend it foolishly like I did, but she has does not seem interested in spending her hard-earned money on empty calories.
Whether her addiction is as foolish as mine, I will let you be the judge. It seems that, lately, my nine-year-old has developed, like me, an appreciation for sweets. However, she prefers to use a different sense with which to savor them – her sense of smell. Thus, her picture of a perfect day is not complete without a trip to Bath and Body Works.
The kid is obsessed with every product that store sells. She surfs their website, looking for new scents, exclaims over each individual item every time we enter the story, and showed more emotion when I gave her a Bath and Body Works gift box for Christmas than she showed for the rest of her presents combined.
Have you seen the Kristin Bell video from Ellen showing when her husband surprised her with a rented sloth (complete with habitat) for her birthday? That’s nearly the reaction Dimples had when she got a Bath and Body works gift card from one of her friends (Perfect Friend) for Christmas.
She even has a designated cubby for her alarmingly growing collection of hand-sanitizers, room fresheners, and shower gels.
Obviously, this is better than my wasted dollars on edible treats. But I still feel like this can’t have good long-term results. Instead of an eating disorder, will she develop a smelling one? Does she need to visit a therapist to determine the underlying cause of her cravings for Caribbean Escape anti-bacterial soap and Sweet Pea fragrance mist?
Strangely, this dependency began after we acquired our dear Noxious Fume Passer, Wonderbutt, her sometimes not so favorite canine sibling- but I’m sure that’s just a coincidence…