Navigating life with a teenager….who happens to have bipolar disorder

Posts tagged ‘Lucille Ball’

Storied Past: The Fastest Way to Washboard Abs


In the past, I have told you all about my ‘Lucy’ moments. The times when I really think I have been trapped in a TV Sitcom. These moments started for me at a young age. For example, when I was 7, my older sister and I were playing circus and she convinced me that being a tightrope walker was easy…..and that I could do it on the clothes line.  There were also times, like when I was 15 and I slid halfway down our outdoor staircase on an icy day….only to get my bearings, stand up and slide the rest of the way down in a full split.  Now, one of these examples was due to naivety and trust….and the other one was total lack of judgement on my part…..but then there was the time I fell down the house…..which was due to both. I have mentioned before that I was raised by my dad in Connecticut and spent time with my mom in Pennsylvania on weekends and during summers. One such summer ended with a bang…..literally.


The summer of 1990 was coming to a close, there were only about 2 weeks left before I was supposed to head back to Connecticut for my first year of high school.  That summer, it was determined that my sister would be staying in Pennsylvania for her last few years of high school.  That meant that this would be the first time I ever traveled home on my own.  Determined to make the most of these last couple of weeks, my sister, her best friend, Leanna and I all decided to have as much fun as we could.  We convinced my mom to let us have a party. She agreed…..and allowed us the space to plan for it however we would like.  That summer, my mom and step-dad had started to put an addition on the back of the house.  It was not yet done, no insulation or sheet rock, but it was complete enough to be utilized in the eyes of teenagers.

Tina, Leanna and I spent and entire day setting it up with decorations, bean bag chairs and twinkle lights. When mom had gone out shopping for the party the next day, Tina ended up going inside to babysit our younger sister leaving Leanna and I in the addition to finish up.  At this time, my younger sister, Mel, decided to be a prankster.  Due to the fact that the addition wasn’t complete, the door to it was still an exterior door off of the kitchen…….that locks from the inside. With her 6 year old, high pitched laugh, she locked us in and ran.  We banged on the door, but apparently, Tina didn’t hear us from her room on the other side of the house. Taking matters into our own hands, we decided to climb out the sliding glass door that was meant to lead to a deck that had yet to be built.

Opening the door, we looked down to determine how far of a drop we had and saw the sill to the basement window below. It was just close enough that if I hung down, my toes would reach it.  We used a blanket to soften the bottom track of the door and I slowly lowered myself down onto the sill and then jumped to the ground.  Leanna slowly followed.  Feeling like we just had a great adventure and proud of ourselves for outsmarting a 6-year-old, we ran around the house and into the front door laughing.

Fast forward about 1 hour.  Mom returned from the store and we were very excited to show her all of the decorating we had done.  We all went into the back room….and again, Mel locked the door. This time, though, she came into the room with us and closed the door behind her.  Now we were all locked in.

“No Problem!” I told my mom.  We did this before.  I will just go down the same way and come around to unlock the door.  In a rush to get everyone out of the addition, I forgot to put the blanket down on the door track.  This time, when I tried to lower myself down to the windowsill, the track cut into my hands……and I let go. I slid down the side of the house and bounced off of the sill and ended up landing on my knees on the ground, stunned. The way my mother describes it, I looked like a cartoon character being pushed down a washboard.

An ER visit and almost 25 years later, it is still one of my biggest Lucy moments of all time.




You Got Some Splainin’ To Do

Lucy I love

Who doesn’t love Lucy?  Although I am a huge fan of her earlier films, like many people, my love affair with her started out on the small screen where she commanded the set and made us laugh. One of my best friends and I use to refer to ourselves as Lucy and Ethel. When we were together, I was the Ethel to her Lucy…..but on my own, I had plenty of Lucy moments.  I recall one time specifically on a day when I had a job interview.

Lucy and ethel

I had gotten up early and taken the kiddo into school, came back home and took a leisurely shower.  This was not something I usually had the time to do, as I was currently working full-time and taking classes at night.  So I languished under the hot water for quite a while, got out of the shower and dried my hair.  This is also not something I normally do.  I have tons of hair and normally to blow it dry can take me an hour or so.  For this interview, I wanted to make sure I looked professional and took the time to do my hair and make up.  I picked a nice suit out of my closet and proceeded to get dressed. Once I was ready, I looked at the clock and was quite proud of myself.  I still had like an hour and a half before I was supposed to be there…..and the interview wasn’t far from my house, so I had no worries in the world.

I took the extra time to tidy up around the house a bit.  As I walked into my son’s room, I glanced out the window to the deck.  I noticed that the rain the night before had caused a slight problem with our canvas gazebo.  You see, I had decided that I didn’t like the boring square or rectangle gazebos….I much preferred the octagonal one that liked to catch puddles of water in the wedges of the roof.  This had happened previously, and I found that by going underneath it with a broom, I could push the water outward and take the weight off the roof. I had been doing this every time it rained since I bought the stupid thing and never had a problem.  Of course, this time would be different.

I walked outside onto the slick deck and took my place under the center of the gazebo, as to not get any back splash from the water hitting the ground.  First wedge done….no problem…..second wedge done….easy as pie…..but that third wedge was waiting to laugh at me.  I pushed the water outward and heard a loud creaking noise from behind me.  The water from the remaining wedges was placing too much weight on the metal structure and it was starting to bend.  If I didn’t reach for it, the whole thing would collapse. So I stepped as quickly as I could and grabbed the top portion of the pole just as it broke…….and water started pouring down onto my head. From the position I was in, I couldn’t let go of the pole with out the whole thing falling on top of me….so I sat there and let the water keep pouring onto my nicely done hair and make-up…..onto my perfectly professional suit and I immediately thought “Now this is a Lucy moment if I ever had one”.

lucy wahhhhh


Now with only an hour left, I semi-dried my hair and wrapped it into a bun, threw on my second best suit and rushed out of the house.  Of course, I hit every stop light and was glancing at the clock the whole time, thinking “Boy, how am I going to explain this? There is no way they will ever hire me”.  I got there just in the nick of time……and they were running late, so I was gold.  All of that prep….all of that stress and the interview only lasted about 20 minutes…..I was hired on the spot.  It turned out to be one of the best places I ever worked, and one of the very few jobs I ever had where my employers truly respected me and my abilities.  I wonder if they would have if they knew they were hiring a Lucy?

Lucy redhead

This really has nothing to do with the post…..but isn’t it so true??? Well, at least my husband thinks so. 😉

Have you ever had a Lucy moment?  Please tell me your story so I don’t feel so alone. 🙂


My Film Fantasy Life

Today’s DP Challenge both excited and frustrated me.

You get to spend a day inside your favorite movie. Tell us which one it is — and what happens to you while you’re there.

So here’s the challenge for me.  I LOVE movies. Picking just one is crazy hard for me……and to pick one that I would want to be a part of for a day, even harder. So, I decided to take this challenge by age.

5-10 :  Anything Muppets related.  I would have loved to hang out with Kermit at Pete’s Diner to be served soup by Rizzo and I know it’s not a movie exactly, but when I was little I wanted to live with Wembley and Mokey down in Fraggle Rock (clap clap).

fraggle rock

Dance Your Cares Away

10-15 : I wanted to be a Goonie so bad.  To go on an adventure to find One-eyed Willie was my dream.  If I was inside the Goon-docks for a day, the 12 year old girl in me would probably knock out that whiner, Andy, so I could kiss Mikey in the cave, because it will be our time…..our time down here.


Maybe this is the reason I prefer Samwise to Frodo

15-20 : My late teens was when I found my true love for old movie musicals. Kiss Me Kate is still one of my all time favorites.  If I could live in that movie for a day, it would bring my teen dream to life by making me a broadway star……that would get to sing and dance my way through Shakespeare (another one of loves I met when I was a teenager). I think I would make sure to be hanging out in the alley so I could sing ‘Brush Up Your Shakespeare’ with Slug and Lippy.

kiss me kate

Dance with Fosse? Yes, Please

20-25 : Stage Door, it is said to be one of Katherine Hepburn’s worst movies….it happens to be one of my favorites.  Oh, to spend a day at auditions with the likes of Ginger Rogers and Lucille Ball. Since I only get one day, I would definitely spend it towards the beginning of the movie…..I would not want to stick around for the devastating sadness at the end (you’ll have to watch to find out).

Stage door

 The calla lilies are in bloom again

25-30 :  Oh, to go on an adventure with Ben Gates in National Treasure.  Which day to pick, though??? As much as I hate heights, I would have to travel down the stairs beneath Parkington Lane.  To find and then roam the treasure room would be overwhelming and amazing.

national treasure
The secret lies with Charlotte

30- present : Please let me take the Hogwarts express.  I would love to spend a day with my classmates in Hogsmead or catch a Quidditch game…..but truthfully, my Harry Potter dream is to get lost in the room of requirement and inspect all of the treasures within.  It may sound boring to all of the magic loving, adventure seeking witches and wizards out there, but seriously, think about all of the magical history in that room.  The Universal theme park has done it’s best to recreate the movie….but sifting through the wonders of room of requirement is not one of them.

harry potter ror

Eat your heart out Ben Gates

Really though,  getting to spend a day inside a movie is not necessary. Anybody has the ability to lose themselves in these worlds while simply sitting on your sofa.  If you don’t, then maybe you’re not watching movies the right way.