Merry Christmas Baby, It's Covid Outside.


Everyone seems to have that one friend who writes a personalized Christmas letter to include with their holiday card, and you find yourself eagerly reading it on the toilet, thinking that you should do something like that next year. Then next year creeps upon you, and you find yourself bragging to friends about how you ordered your Christmas cards in August, designed personalized holiday address labels in September, and bought super cute Santa Claus stamps in November. This year will be the year you finally get your shit together and WIN CHRISTMAS.

My closet contains an avalanche of unwrapped presents for friends and family as I write this.  My decorations are partially up, and my kitchen has plastic bins holding more baubles, lights, and figurines that need to find their perfect spot. I'll get to it later.  But first, let me watch another episode of Call the Midwife (OMG! Season 10) and take a nap. My house will look great in a week, and I've still got time to send my Christmas cards and gifts to my bestie living in New York City. I can accomplish much in the next sixteen days, and that is why I'm grateful for last year's Christmas gift from my mother-in-law —a Nespresso Vertuo espresso machine. It truly is the gift that keeps on giving…like herpes or Justin Timberlake. Just not in that order, of course.

Now for catching you up on this past year's shenanigans:

I became the unlikely ambassador of the gay community because I found these delightfully colored rainbow disposable masks on Amazon and wore them everywhere.  You would not believe the number of people who commented on how much they either loved my face mask, thanked me for my support, or managed to convey their approval with their crinkly eye smiles. My best friend is gay.  I love rainbows and my gay best friend.  Take that Delta variant.  Love always wins.

Did you know you can buy customized light switch plates on Etsy? I've spent a small fortune buying seasonal light switch covers for my bathroom this past year. It's not like I have a lot of bathroom foot traffic at my home, but I love turning off my lights and thinking to myself—you, Kim, are a very clever girl.

I managed to grow my hair to its most extended length these past two pandemic years and loved the feel of fussing over my gloriously healthy tresses.  I bopped around outside with my bouncy ponytail feeling like I could take on the world. I felt like Jennifer Garner in the movie 13 Going On 30.  I didn't plan on the uncomfortable feeling while leaning back into my car's headrest.  Nor did I appreciate having to adjust my hair around my CPAP mask each night. Spencer shaved off all his hair at one point, and I considered doing the same.  He suggested that I start over and wear wigs during the interim.  When I found myself googling wigs on Amazon and watching YouTube videos from gorgeous Ebony women describing what it feels like to wear wigs, I knew I was in serious trouble.  I decided to seek professional assistance, and now I've got this fabulous short hairstyle with streaks of purple sprinkled in just for me. Thanks Millie. You saved this crazy bitch from itchy, fabricated hair and bad-choice embarrassment. 

We continue to be caregivers for my 80-year-old mother-in-law Jeanette.  She has dementia, and we're doing everything possible to keep her out of a facility. But I expect it's going to happen sooner than later.  So far, she's safe staying in her own house during the day while we work. We installed Blink cameras in all her rooms to monitor her.  She also rocks that 'I've Fallen, and I Can't Get Up' button necklace and often forgets why our Beagle Shelby is there with her during the day. She sleeps in her room at my house because she doesn't want to be alone at night, which is understandable. Every single morning, she shuffles down the hallway, fully dressed, and asks me, "Is this right?" because she fears that she hasn't dressed correctly. Imagine me watching Nightly News with Lester Holt that I recorded from the night before and looking across the living room to see her sitting on the couch in her winter coat, tightly gripping her purse and not understanding a single thing happening on the news.  One of my favorite stories to share was earlier this year when the first openly gay NFL football player Carl Nassib said he was gay during an interview.  She looked at me in shock and asked, "He’s dead?”  Why yes, this handsome alive man on the TV is, in fact, dead. Jeanette doesn’t always understand what is discussed on the news unless it’s about a national impending tragedy like the Queen of England’s failing health.

From January through June of this year, I had the distinct displeasure of working as a buyer for a company based in Germany. A typical week found me working at least sixty hours and slowly falling apart from the workload. But then I got a new job for a global manufacturer who makes the shiny things that hold the vaccines and I've never looked back. It’s been six months, and I am still struggling to tell my friends and family exactly what I do there, but it’s related to making the Covid vaccines, and I’m pretty much a goddamned national hero.  Kidding!! What I can confidently say about this new chapter in my career is this: it’s the company I should have been working for 15 years ago.  Sorry, I’m still pretty pissed off at my former employer for first putting me on furlough for two weeks, having come back to work for a couple of weeks, and ultimately laying me off during the pandemic. 

Below is what I hope to achieve in the next year: 

  • The continued satisfaction of plucking pesky chin hairs without a lighted tweezer
  • That perfect seal of my CPAP mask when I lay my head down to sleep for the night
  •  Mastering how to use that expensive smoker pellet grill I bought from Lowes this past summer because I was impressed it came with an iOS app.  What the hell was I thinking?
  •  More writing because, face it, this personal blog has got a case of the digital dust bunnies.
  •  Less interest in celebrities and more focus on the biggest superstar of all time—ME.
  • Training our Beagle Shelby to get in the bathtub for a much-needed bath.  It’s been two years since we adopted her, and those doggy wipes are not masking the foul stench of her leaking anal glands.
  • We need to take another vacation to The Villages in Florida.  My Winn Dixie rewards card is due to expire at the end of 2022, and I’ve got Florida grapefruit to halve and sugar.
  • Color at least 1 page of a coloring book because it’s an excellent focus to help with my depression and anxiety.  But what if I’m anxious just thinking about being less worried because I’m not doing the thing that will help me be less anxious? I need a Xanax instead of a crayon.
  • I will buy a Carvel cake in the frozen food aisle because I’m a 52-year-old woman who permits herself to do adult things like buying a frozen not-so-tasty-as-I-remembered-it cake for simply no good reason other than I can.
I've so many good things to accomplish in 2022, but first I've got to finish up writing out those Christmas cards bought back in August.

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