Monday, September 17, 2012

The Case for the Bad Boy

I have always been that girl who could not resist the bad boy. The truth is, most women can't. All of us have someone, somewhere in our past that didn't respect us and in most cases didn't even really like us that much. And we just COULD NOT get enough of him and his evilness. I know I'm guilty. Several "wish I could forget" times over.

In some cases, they really are just raging assholes lacking sensitivity chips. In others, women don't respect themselves in which case, why should a man? My period of indulgence was most definitely high school -- teenage self-esteem co-mingled with some really (and still) wrong dudes. I don't think there was a single good one in the mix, despite their sheer numbers. This might explain why I went polar opposite in college and dated the Good Guy. For eight years. Because I wanted to marry a guy who I knew genuinely loved me, would never cheat on me, and offer me a lifetime of security.

And then I didn't. Why? Because I wasn't challenged. I'm a handful. I'm highly opinionated, aggressive, driven, and good or bad can only respect people that level with me. Not concede to me. Because I'm not always right and I don't know everything. You just have to remind me sometimes.

So I married a bad boy. Oh yes I did and I am proud of it. There is no question he has been awarded this status by more former girlfriends and one-night-stands than I care to know about (yet, somehow do). He even started out as my rebound bad boy. And then something happened.

I realized the bad boy isn't really all that bad. Sure, they objectify women and use them as entertainment. Until they find the right one, that is. Once they do, you realize they too are very human and even feel, underneath all of that crazy "I could care less about you" sexiness. And there's a woman for every bad boy, because no guy, I don't care what they tell you, wants to be 45 hitting up 25 year-olds in today's club scene. Trust me. I know a few who still talk a good game but would do anything to be snuggled on the couch watching the Bachelor with their wife. Seriously.

Most bad boys want to be challenged and intrigued by their mate. And most young women don't have a clue. Hence the reason these bad boys are usually the last to marry. But when they do, they redeem themselves and then some. Like my very own husband. Who is likely going to put me in my place for writing this post, but wait Honey! I'm about to say something really awesome.

My husband is the most caring and compassionate yet strong and principled human being I know. He does not let me get away with anything, and I would not have it any other way. At the same time I feel very loved and supported and I question nothing about our commitment to one another. Admittedly it took some time to get here, but once we did the reward significantly outweighed any hardship. Even as a writer I don't think I could ever find sufficient words to describe how much I value him and the life we live together. Every day he positively impacts my world and makes me a better person. Which is more than anyone could ever ask for in a mate.

And he was a bad boy. They make the best husbands. You know, if you marry one, that you were worth changing their ways. Not to mention they come with significantly less ex-baggage than good guys. You are the one, and the only one, because the rest (for the most part) simply didn't matter. Which in turn brings that little ego boost that comes with knowing you snagged one...but you can't let that go to your head. Enjoy it,  privately.

Morale of the story? Don't run away from the bad boys, embrace them, but do so wisely. If the timing's right, they could be the one. Today's asshole could be tomorrow's hero. You just never know.

Sunday, September 16, 2012


I am a machine. I make efficiency an art form, and it's inconceivable that life could be lived any other way. I make the most of every moment of the day, to the point where I can plan to procrastinate. Yes, that's right. Plan to procrastinate. I have to, otherwise the balance is thrown off.

I don't know how I got this way. I just have a knack for seeing the shortest yet most effective means of getting things done, and establishing the systems that make it continuously possible. You could say I'm always prepared. For anything. I should have been a performance engineer.

It comes in really handy at work, as I can juggle a hundred different balls and barely break a sweat. When I say I'm busy, I stretch the definition of the word. My to do list is not average, not even close. Like your own, plus three of your co-workers. It's sometimes hard re-setting your own expectations in managing people who don't have that same level of efficiency (and are not expected to), but otherwise, it's pretty damn awesome.

I'm the same way at home. It takes me two hours to clean 3,500 square feet. My husband? Three days. Again, not his fault, just wired different ways. I even attempt efficiency in putting things away around the house, making little piles to carry with me up and downstairs as I go about other tasks. I will have considered it a wasted trip if I go downstairs to feed the fish and forget to bring my laptop back to the docking station. It's a little sick, I admit it.

So to my point. To all the lovely people out there that keep telling us we aren't going to be able to keep a tight ship around here once my little man arrives, I have two words for you: watch me.

Let's be clear about this. I'm under no delusion that things aren't going to change and that expectations won't have to be re-established. They certainly will. I won't be able to keep playing the same game because there will be more things to care for, namely raising the child. Which becomes a priority over the weekly vacuuming and once I go back to work pretty much everything.

But, I can assure you that what I would consider my bare minimum will still manage to get done, and in comparison to the rest of the world it will seem as if I'm achieving the impossible. I know you want to see me fail, and you want me to eat my words. But it's not going to happen.

Beyond my confidence in my own capacity for get shit doneness, I have living proof. Lots of it, but for the case of two examples, one is of my own blood and the other might as well be. Full-time working Moms with two kids, running a tight ship in the household, while managing to still be beautiful. It's possible. I've seen it with my own two eyes. They might not think they're doing it, and yes there are days when a padded room sounds more fun than coming home, but they are indeed successful and if they can do it I can...especially with just one bambino.

No, my husband isn't going to go hungry. Yes, my house will stay clean, even if I have to outsource it. So let's stop preaching and see what happens.

Monday, September 10, 2012


The desirable blood pressure of an adult female. Unless "high strung" defines your temperament, as it has mine on more than one occasion. Usually, this trait is associated with some level of hypertension (that's high blood pressure for all you healthy people). I typically hit 120/90.

These days, my pulse has been so faint I'm not sure I can claim the status of living. Pregnancy has once again gotten the best of me, and caused the polar opposite effect. My blood pressure has dropped, significantly. Dizzy, nauseous, about to faint...all common over this past weekend, not to mention the ridiculous weakness and fatigue. Yet more evidence of the possession of Courtney Saunders.

But not today. Oh hell no. By 8:30am my inbox was so full of bullshit my mmHg's spiked at a greater rate than is considered safe in the medical world. No fatigue here, unless you lump "defeated" in the same category. While it seems this pregnancy is treatment for my job stress, conversely my Monday is treatment for my LBP symptoms.

Despite the apparent yin/yang of the whole situation, something tells me none of this is good.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Meet My Little Man

Thanks to a low PAPP-A test result and a pre-existing heart condition in me (the mommy), we have doctor's appointments every 2 weeks to keep an eye on how things are progressing with the little man. Which means scheduling is hell, but I get to see him every month.

Before today, he's been pretty stubborn -- a trait he will undoubtedly possess once born as well. I mean, you've met Scott and I, right? He's been fond of facing inward, preventing us from seeing anything and everything we really needed to (even after being prodded, poked and allowed periods of rest). Not sure he likes Dr. Gomez.

But today, he decided to cooperate. We had a little talk on the way, and he did not disappoint. I'm not sure I'll ever see or feel anything more amazing than when his tiny face suddenly appeared on the screen. Twice. And then he yawned. You want to talk about all this becoming real? That'll do it. Before today he was a squirmy little alien that liked to kick me...and now he's a little person.

Baby Saunders
He's a charmer, right?! Yes, he kind of looks like the aforementioned alien, but you did too once upon time. He's only 25 weeks old and doesn't even really have his skin yet, don't judge.

I like how he's kinda smiling! But even more I like that everything is nice and normal. He's perfectly average in weight (1lb 10oz), no issues with his heart and all other development seems to be progressing as planned. You think I might cut myself a break and stop worrying a little, but I can guarantee that won't happen until he's in his late 30's. Maybe 40's.

I'm more excited than ever to hold him for the first time. Only two more perinatal appointments before our birth month. But first, I'm going to spend the next three months enjoying the changing of the seasons, my husband, dinners out, movies, and sleep. We celebrate our first wedding anniversary in a few weeks, and celebrate we will. What a year it's been.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

We're Gonna Need a Bigger Boat

I am but a vessel, navigating the world in search of healthy food and calming environments for my passenger. Who has all the sudden decided he needs a bigger cabin. 

Last night, I stood in the front of the full-length mirror brushing my teeth and wondering who the person quizzically looking back at me was. She had the same face, legs and arms of someone I used to know, but the torso looked vastly differently. 

It's disturbing to all of the sudden have so much more of yourself to contend with, especially when it seems to have happened overnight. 

My first clue to my expansion was a t-shirt I wore last weekend, that this weekend didn't come close to meeting the top of my pants. I thought I'd shrunk it, and then that I was losing my mind. No, just gaining belly mass. Not to mention my heaving breasts, seemingly attempting to keep pace with the belly. The insanity of this is I did nothing to acquire this body, it's being manipulated by a tiny human inside of me. 

It's like something from a science-fiction novel. At least for a first-time Mom. 

I have to admit I am somewhat fond of my roundness, aside from the strangeness of it all. It's rather attractive, and the only time in my life I will consider myself bigger to be better. That said, it feels a little too good to be true. I keep waiting for my ass to expand and the rest to swell. So far so good, but the third trimester is right around the corner. 

In the meantime, I will accommodate my passenger's request (as if I had a choice) and enjoy this new womanly version of myself. And of course acquire a new wardrobe to suit it. 

Saturday, September 1, 2012

The first and last. Promise.

Let me start by saying that I am the least politically-minded person on the planet. I believe that my odds of solving the mysteries of the universe are significantly greater than finding an honest political candidate I can get behind. So I generally remove myself from the shenanigans and hoopla. But I also believe that you have to participate in some way, shape or form if we really are to be a government "of the people, by the people, for the people". In other words, put up or shut up.

Of course I have an opinion that, like everyone else, I feel compelled to share. I might not even consider it a well-informed opinion at this point. But this is my blog, which you have a choice to read or not to read. And I do hope you'll hear me out. This isn't about Obama or Romney. I would likely be classified as a Republican, but it's not about my label. This is about people.

It's not the politicians fault. Crazy, right? But it's true. All of humanity is a disgrace these days and collectively we are failing to meet our potential. That's the bigger problem. Where the politicians and government play a role is in how easy they make it for us to destroy ourselves and thus our country. I am extremely proud to be an American, and there is no where else I would rather live. But damn did we become a bunch of greedy, moralistically depraved bastards.

Case in point, the Banks and Corporate America. You hear so much about how greedy they are. And of course they are, doing whatever deceitful act it takes to make a dollar (euro, yen, whatever). But so are the poor. Bitching about how unfair it all is, perfectly capable of working but instead living off welfare. In both cases it's because, in part, the government and thus we made it possible.

I, for one, am sick and tired of paying for both of their mistakes. I work my ass off. I never aspired to own Freddie Mac or Frannie May, and I never really had the desire to take care of someone who has less than me. I have a job. I bought a home I could afford. I don't spend more than I earn. Oh yea, and I save money too. I don't expect anyone to take care of me, and I expect that those around me won't ask to be taken care of. I'm honest, fair, and understand that the bottom line truth is what I put in is what I'm going to get out. What is so damn hard about this? Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

What makes me (and many Americans) different? Accountability. Or, let's call it personal responsibility. This is the second part of the equation. Somewhere along the way our government taught us that it was ok to be irresponsible if it meant we could have more and someone else would pay for our mistakes. So we decided to compromise the hard-working, ethical nature that our country was built upon.

And nothing is going to change until we hold the irresponsible accountable for their actions. Government, corporations, and your everyday American alike.

So who I am voting for? Whomever I decide is going to throw down the hammer and make us own up to our mistakes. Economic, environmental, social policy - no matter. It's going to hurt, you can guarantee it will be painful. But it has to happen if we are ever to be a people I can be proud of once again. And maybe, just maybe, with a little humility we'll achieve the moral correction we so desperately need.

I'm going to step down off my soapbox now. Some of you will be offended by what I've written, some of you will praise me. It doesn't really matter, and you shouldn't stop talking to your brother-in-law or write off good friends because they feel differently. People are entitled to their own opinions, it's what makes this country great. But it could be better. So much better.

That concludes my first and last political post. Good luck in making the decision on how to cast your vote for  yourself. But don't fuck it up by voting for Obama, ok? I'm kidding. Relax.