Green's Hill-Amy Lane's Home - News

Saturday, August 29, 2020

Glued to My Feed

 It's weird. I know I've functioned this week. I've gone walking, gone grocery shopping, cooked, done dishes--I mean, I've been functional. 

But like many of you all, I haven't been really here.

I've been glued to my feed where the world comes completely unglued around me, and it's a thing I need to stop.

Not that I don't want to know what happens--no, I'm almost addicted to knowing what happens.

It's that sometimes, "knowing what happens" bleeds into fixating on the things we can't change, and it gets frustrating, and we get angry, and the next thing we know we're getting into a shouting match with someone on the internet who really DOESN'T have anything better to do than scream at people who don't believe what they do. 

And we DO have better things to do. 

I mean really, we have so very little we can control. We can make our reality better by stepping away from Twitter every so often, right?

Of course, that doesn't mean we're not still donating to things like the Sierra Club and the bail fund for protestors either. Because the world continues apace.


And other than that, I finished an essentials bag out of a cotton/acrylic blend, with a little sleeve of fun fur at the shoulder to cushion my neck. I am ABSURDLY excited about how well this turned out--and part of it is the yarn, which is stupidly soft, even without the nylon fur stuff, which is also super soft. I used to wrap a bandana around the shoulder, and it looked... well, weird. And seriously--am I not weird enough?

Anyway--fighting to stay awake here--this might be more incoherent than usual. I DID have an encounter with a hidden pussycat in a tree--as in, I saw the hidden pussycat, and I got a picture of the hidden pussycat, but if I showed you the picture, you'd wonder what the actual hell I was trying to get with my camera. Which, if you think about it, is a great metaphor for writing. Sometimes you can reveal the hidden pussycat with magic words, and sometimes, you need a lot of editing and some prayer. 

And there you go. My profundity limit has been reached. 

Stay healthy, happy and sane out there--I know it's not always as easy as it should be.

Monday, August 24, 2020

Comfort Where We Can...

So, the state of the world right now... 

Don't get me started. 

But there I was, last week, pondering on it all, when I went to Michael's and came back with yarn.  And felt stupid. And then Mate said something about more yarn. And I felt defensive. And then I went online to Michael's-- and remember, all, I have SO MUCH YARN my acronym is S.A.B.L.E.-- Stash Accrued Beyond Life Expectancy-- so this is unforgivable. 

But there was a sale.

A gorgeous sale. 

80/20 YarnCakes for $4.99 a cake.

And... and the world sucked. And I couldn't knit or crochet fast enough to fix it. But there's so much potential in each cheap giant yarn cake. And... and... and...

And then unlike, say, medicine or checks or car registration for the entire rest of the world due to Republican cruelty, THIS PACKAGE, of all the necessary packages on the planet, THIS PACKAGE, arrived promptly. Before its scheduled date, even. 

Shame on the hoof.

And I just couldn't open it.

"What's that?" Mate asked. 

"A box," I said.

"Where's the box from--oh!"

"Can't miss that," I tell him. The logo is EMBLAZONED on the side of the giant box.

"Nope. That's, an, uh, large box."

"It's enormous." I literally have no words.

"So, are you going to open it?"

Now, my living room is in shambles. We're still trying to empty ZoomBoy's room so we can move all this other crap into it, and my yarn corner--which I clean up every so often is as in need of a trim as I am--or Mate for that matter. The thought of opening this box and organizing my yarn around the contents therein makes me want to cry.


"It's almost like you're ashamed of that box."

Well, I had this coming. I look him in the eyes. "Could be."

"That's fair." He thinks carefully, knowing that revenge-by-retail is a habit I've been valiantly trying (and mostly succeeding) to break over the last two years.

"Any, uh, reason for that box?"

"I broke." I mean, gotta face this shit head on, but the fact was, he had every right to say something the FIRST time I overbought yarn. Yes, he pissed me off, but I obviously have a problem.

"Gotcha." He breathes in through his nose, and then makes a wise man's decision. "Are you going to open it?"

"After we get the living room back."

"That's probably a good idea."

"I'm sorry," I say, looking at the giant cardboard monument to my shame propped up in a corner of the kitchen.

"Me too," he says. 

There's a hug at the end of this.

The box is going to sit there until the living room is clean. And, unspoken between us, that's probably the last time I'm going to buy yarn for quite some time.


Friday, August 21, 2020

A little bravery

So I'm not often courageous--but I do get pissed off.

I was at the grocery store, talking to my friendly neighborhood grocery clerk through plexiglass, both of us wearing masks. Didn't matter--we could tell we were smiling by our eyes. Chicken was off getting tortillas because I'd forgotten them, and I was paying for my purchase before I started bagging groceries. (We can reuse bags here, as long as we bag our own.)

Anyway--the woman behind me broke the social distance minimum to lean on the counter, and the grocery clerk--you could tell she hated doing this--spoke up.

"You need to back up. You need to remain behind the cone until she's done. And pull up your mask."

"I am tired. My hip hurts." (She had a thick Russian accent.)

"That's fine, but at least pull up your mask."

The woman rolled her eyes. "The government can't see me."

The clerk persisted. "But it's store policy."

"Doesn't matter. Who can see?" She smirked.

"We can see," I said. "It's store policy, and it's human decency. This is for everybody's protection--do what she asks please."

"Government can't see!"

"This isn't for the government it's for us! Be a good citizen and pull your mask up!"

She did, glaring and I finished my purchase just as Chicken ran back with the tortillas. She ran around to finish the bagging, and was short two bags.

The clerk looked me dead in the eye and said, "Don't worry about paying for those. You're fine."

And it wasn't the thirty cents a bag or whatever--it was the acknowledgment. We had each other's backs.

And I need to remember to be brave more often.

Sunday, August 16, 2020

Blackberry Bush Blues

 I'm not sure if I've mentioned this before--certainly not in recent years.

My first kiss was behind the pool house with a complete stranger in the sixth grade.

He said he could teach me how to dive and we'd been flirting the whole day and he pulled me around to the back, and there were were, wet hair, dripping water, my lime-green swimsuit sagging a little because the elastic was shot. There he showed me the little hop that would make divinghappen.

And I gazed into his hazel eyes and saw the mild acne and the way his longish hair duck-tailed and the few whiskers on his chin and realized he was probably fourteen or fifteen and I was eleven.

I must have looked scared for a moment--I know my heart leapt into my throat because I wasn't stupid--I hadn't grown up sheltered, although for a long time I pulled my "innocence" around my shoulders like a cloak to protect myself from the things that I'd seen, the things that had been done around and to me, that little girls shouldn't know.

I knew bad things could happen to girls who went behind the pool house with strangers.

But his eyes widened and he looked surprisingly vulnerable and I could smell sun and chlorine and, surprising and almost overwhelming, the smell of blackberry bushes.

It's an odd smell. It doesn't smell like fruit. It's tart and almost like oak and like water and bracken and it's always a sharp counterpoint to the smell of dust and scorched grass which were the other prevalent smells in the foothills. 

It flooded me--then, now, always--with a deep melancholy. A sadness for summer because summer was always so fleeting, even when I was a kid. A sadness for being a lonely kid, stuck in my own head. 

And then there was a breathless pause, he grew close enough to touch his lips to mine, and I caught my breath.

And then it was over. A true gentleman, he taught me how to dive--and I didn't screw up my courage then--and then he spent the rest of the swim session with his friends.

I think it occurred to both of us that anything else was probably a bad idea.

But that smell of blackberry bushes stuck with me. 

Those who have read Vulnerable will remember how much. That smell--that underlying sense of change, of excitement, of a teeming world underlying the ordinariness of the long, exhausting day--has stayed with me. Scenting blackberry bushes on the wind always fears me with equal parts fear and excitement and I am never sure which will win out.

That day it was fear. 

We recently unearthed old pictures of Mate and I at our rehearsal dinner--i.e. a picnic in the park where we got married. It was 105 that day--and the next, and believe me, there's nothing like an outdoor wedding when you're wearing a ton of satin and lace to make you homicidal for punch--but blackberry bushes lined the stream that runs through the park, and I still remember a stray strangled breeze carrying that smell to me and for a moment we remembered why we were doing this thing with the formal wear and the relatives and the family, and I was filled with hope.

This week California has been hit with a painful heat wave. 

Climate change--which is terrifying enough--coinciding with some of the scariest political history in our country's memory, and we were in for 105-114 degree heat from Friday to Friday. 

I pulled my practical Mom shoes on and woke up at seven (*gasp *) to walk the dogs. I'm not sure if I can do the same tomorrow--I need to get them out and about before nine o'clock or their little feet can get scorched on the blacktop of the path. But Friday I managed, and at seven in the morning, when the temperature is in the low eighties, the path isn't torturous. I was finishing up a walk and passing a giant conglomeration of oak when it hit me.

The smell.

The scent of blackberry bushes. 

It shouldn't have been a surprise-- much of the path runs alongside a creek--but the water is far below and the wind is not ambitious enough to lift the smell of water and change to the heavier, stiller air above.

But it was. And in spite of the heat rolling in like the steamroller of doom, I paused and closed my eyes and remembered the smell of fear and hope and change. 

The fear and change are old friends--particularly after the last three-and-a-half years. 

Particularly after this year, I think we all can agree. 

But the hope--that was a surprise. 

In Vulnerable, when Cory follows that smell, she finds death--but also faith, and upheaval and strength and life. 

There are many, many years between that character and myself. 

But I can still remember the smell of blackberry bushes in the apocalyptic heat and hope.

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Shifting Stuff Around

 I'm not even going to take pictures, because it's so frustrating.

What's happening is this:

For many years, Chicken and Big T had their own rooms, and the "little kids" shared a room.

For WAY too long after the big kids moved out, we used Big T's room as a storage room and Chicken's room as a game room.

We were all stuck here in our tiny house during pandemic, and Mate and I went AUGH and re-did Chicken's old room and got Squish installed in there.

Now, the room they both shared is...

I can't even...

I need to hire workers with shovels to dig it out.

But whose going to come into my dust pit in the middle of a pandemic when we can't pay hazard $$$.

So what we've done is moved all the stuff out of Big T's old room and into the living room, and then moved ZoomBoy into Big T's room.

And now we just need... workers with shovels? Something, I guess, to excavate ZoomBoy's room so we can CLEAR MY WARDROBE AND BOOK BOXES OUT OF THE LIVING ROOM!

And ZoomBoy's fine, you understand. He's got his own bed, his own desk, his own chest of drawers, his own computer. HE COULD LIVE IN THERE right?

And... and I can't walk into his own room without my ADHD zapping my brain like a 2000 amps. I don't even know where to START. 

But I've got to start. We've got to clear this shit out. Because you guys... this is the last stage. We clear this room out and all that's left is mine and Mate's room and the bathrooms and the kitchen. But our kids--they'll have desks and their own rooms and sanctuaries for the next four years. (And I know ZoomBoy is supposed to graduate this year, but  you guys, he's 16 right now. I don't see him picking up to leave any earlier than 20, and I'm FINE with that.) 

We're so close. I mean, SO CLOSE. And I know that another project awaits us when we're done with this one, but... SO CLOSE. 

So anyway--if you see me online (I've been reading out loud to my FB group) and you notice a lot of chaos behind me... cross your fingers, okay? Because eventually--EVENTUALLY it'll get sorted out.

Saturday, August 8, 2020

A Harmless Obsession

First of all, I'd like to say I hurt myself in the most stupid, middle-aged way possible on the planet. 

That's right, folks--I cramped my hand while playing on my phone while, uhm, ensconced on the throne, as it were. 

And it wasn't just an, "Oh, ouch--a few stretches, some ibuprofen," kind of cramp. It was an all day, "MotherFUCKER, the hell did I do to my hand?" kind of cramp--a tendonitis, if you will, and while it did diminish my screen time, it was with my right hand, and I am left-handed, so I could crochet just fine.

In fact, crocheting seemed to do it good--but then, I've been a big proponent of knitting and crocheting as recreational therapy for a variety of ills since I first started doing it myself, 22 years ago.

Anyway, the hand feels a teeny bit better, and I got some work done on my Caron Cakes shawl--which is embarrassing to admit I'm crocheting to be honest. 

It's so... it's so... EASY. And the yarn is... AFFORDABLE. And it's WASHABLE and PRACTICAL and seriously all the things I seem to avoid in yarn in a big way. Is it rare? Hand-painted? One of a kind skeins that make you feel like shit if you have more than three yards left after your project? Is it hand wash only, with special conditioning soap, with PH balanced drinking water filtered through volcanic stone? WILL IT DISSOLVE WITH EVERYDAY USE? Yup. That's my yarn--I'll buy a lOT of it, and put it in a box and look at it and pet it and MAYBE knit with it one day, when I'm drunk on my own power and pitiful expertise.

But easy-care affordable mass produced yarn?  Well, yes. I buy lots of that too and work the crap out of it.

So, about this shawl--it's made with Caron Cakes Cotton blend--and normally I abhor working with cotton because it's a little like trying to weave rattan with sticks. The thing is, once it's worked, cotton is a wonderful fiber--the more you wash it the softer and more giving it becomes. It's glorious. Bugs hate it, it lasts forever, and, like your favorite T-shirt it BREATHES. But there's that whole, "Makes my hands feel 80 when I'm 50 problem" and usually I'll take a hard pass. 

In this case, though, the cotton is mixed with acrylic (and again--so many things I loathe about acrylic, starting with its squinkiness on metal needles and ending with a raw scrubbed feeling in my yarn-guiding finger if I work with it too long. 

But in this case, the blend works wonderfully--and the resulting fabric is sort of like a towel. Not going to keep you TOO warm--but for a summer-weight shawl you wouldn't mind dragging to the beach cause it'll wash like magic, I'm sort of a fan.

Anyway-- I like my shawls to be monster, even if they're for other people, and this one is fitting that bill just fine. I'm rooting for an 80 inch wingspan, and there might even be some left over for a hood--woot! (I also, inexplicably, like hoods on my shawls. Yes, I know they're impractical. So?)

And the thing is, I'm, uhm, sort of obsessed with them. 

Shawls. You may have noticed it. I shipped that box of 6 shawls to my cousins, and promptly started a sweater for Squish. Well, the sweater is probably 1/3 done, but, well, it's a pain in the ass and there's counting involved and the yarn is too thick and... *whine*

But shawls?  Oh yes. Finished one, am working on... *counts in head* others. More. Working on more. And a scarf. 

Okay, fine. Shawls as my comfort knitting are still there. 

And I'm still buying yarn way faster than I can knit with it. 

And it's still bringing me great joy.

Mate and I just watched the Michelle McNamara documentary--I'll Be Gone in the Dark--and we were riveted. For one thing, the events in the story--from the East Area Rapist's original hunting grounds in Rancho Cordova, to where he was eventually arrested--only a couple of miles from here, to where Patton Oswalt came for the book signing--our home Barnes & Nobles-- was ours. All of it. And one of the things that hit me, as Patton was talking about his wife's death, was her fear of what she was leaving their daughter with--would Alice know she was loved. 

My life is probably not as consequential as Michelle McNamara's--but I still might leave my kids with a few things when I pass on.  Definitely I'll leave boxes full of books that I wrote and lots of shawls. And a fuckton of yarn to ship off to other people. 

But mostly I think I"ll be leaving them the memory of going, "Mom was fucking WEIRD, but it was a NICE weird, so our childhood didn't entirely suck."

And also, shawls. 

By the way-- the yellow and green/green skeins up there were color-patterned after the wooly bear caterpillar. 

Isn't that FANTASTIC?

Monday, August 3, 2020

Kermit Flail--We Made it to August--YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAY!!!



Coming next month
Well, to say it's been an odd summer would be... an understatement. Some of you may be reading this
on my website, because FaceBook did a VERY odd thing, and, well, what can I say-- we improvise, 

(Also, at the last moment as I was typing this up on blogger, blogger decided it was going to be unco-
operative to say the least, so, uhm, *crosses fingers for formatting*)

That being said, I'm going to count my blessings. There are new books to read here--some from old 
favorites and good friends like Kaje Harper and Andrew Grey, and some from my assistant's favorite's 
list, because she's the most excellent of eggs and wanted to flail some books that made her happy. 

So with way less ado than usual (see the formatting problems!) I'm going to let the books do the talking!

May you all be healthy, happy, and reading. Some days that's really all we need.

Tracefinder: Choices (Tracefinder book 3)
By Kaje Harper

An ex-cop and a psychic on the mend find their safe haven threatened by vandalism, arson, and the shadow of their dangerous past. 
After overusing his Talent till he almost died, Brian wants nothing more than a quiet job on the farm, with Nick to come home to. He's trying to start a new life, despite bad dreams he can't shake, vandalism close to home, and his sister's problematic baby on the way.

Nickgave up the police force and moved to North Carolina to be with Brian, and he doesn't regret it. But he's at loose ends, with no real work, the lurking specter of Brian's brother Damon hanging around, and a worry in the pit of his stomach that Damon's old enemies might still be afterBrian. Nick's keeping his eyes open and his gun loaded.

Genre: M/M mystery/thriller/romance
Ending: HEA
Content warnings: some violence, history of a sexually-abusive episode
Length: 127,000
Release date: July 30th

Fire and Diamond

by Andrew Grey

When Deputy Nick Senaster chastises a bunch of college kids at a bar, he doesn’t think anything of it, even if their leader is gorgeous. The guy is too young and way too cocky, and soon Nick has an emergency foster placement to focus on. His first job is ensuring ten-year-old Ethan knows someone cares for him. But Nick doesn’t realize Ethan is a package deal.

When Alexander finds out his abusive stepfather, Dieter, has lost custody of his half brother, he’s torn between relief and dread. Alexander can’t get custody until he can provide a home for his tiny family. In the meantime, at least Ethan’s foster father will let Alexander visit.

So of course the man turns out to be the cute but dour cop who gave Alexander a hard time.

Soon Nick and Alexander discover they misjudged each other. Nick is more than an authoritarian automaton, and Alexander has a drive and a maturity that belie their first meeting. But between a campaign of intimidation from Dieter, their own insecurities, and the logistics of dating with Ethan’s fragile sense of stability hanging in the balance, they have their work cut out for them if they want to build a future.


Barbie's Choices-- So, folks, my beloved assistant, Barbie Pomales, has asked if I could Flail some of her favorite reads. Since the Flail is driven mostly by volunteers--writer friends who hit me up and go, "Hey, wanna flail me?" and sometimes not many friends are flailing that month, I was like, "Hey--we could make this a segment, because that way, I'll ALWAYS have stuff to flail!"  Also, because Barbie is super passionate about the books she loves, and you all know that's my jam. So, here's Barbie's choices--this month, it's three books she really really loves and is happy to recommend. 

Finding Me
Book 1: Voice Out series

by Stella Rainbow


I thought I was happy with my life. I have a successful business, an awesome found family, a dog who is a bigger princess than me and volunteer work that keeps me busy and satisfied when nothing else does.

I was content—and I'd thought I was happy, too—to live my life just like that. No mess. No one to demand things of me I wasn't willing to give. No complications.

But then I met Charlie.


For my whole life, I'd been sure I was destined to live a half-life, to hide a part of myself so I wouldn't lose the only two people I cared about. And I was resigned to my fate.

But when my dad died of a sudden heart attack, I realized life was too short to keep hiding. I moved to a new city, but I had no clue how to go about finding a part of myself that I'd buried so long ago.

And then I met Brady.

A man who is out and proud of who he is and a person who has spent their life hiding a part of themselves. Will they be able to forge a path together or would their differences end up pushing them away?

(Finding Me is a 60k words long queer romance full of sweet kisses, makeup tutorials and a tiny doggo called Cherry you can't help but fall in love with. Finding Me is the second book in the Voice Out series, but it can be read as a standalone and has a definite HEA.)

Trigger Warning: Deals with gender identity issues like Dysphoria.
Pre-order Kindle  and KU on August 8, 2020.

Times Yet to Come 
Time of Our Lives: Book 1
 by Morgan Mason 

When an unexpected letter arrives in the mail, Aero assumes it’s bad news about the grandmother he hasn’t seen in years. A trip to Southern California to reconnect with her and pick up a family heirloom, however, produces an introduction to a hotter-than-hell surf god who asks him out to dinner.

A chance encounter at the beach piques Charlie’s interest and gets him thinking about things beyond the beach and his antiques restoration business. Making an impromptu dinner invitation, to a man of all things, has Charlie opening his mind to unexplored feelings and incredible possibilities.

With Aero living in Seattle and Charlie in Huntington Beach, is their quick romance doomed to fail before it even takes off? Is five days enough time to realize that some things are just worth fighting for? 

Lightning Dragon Strikes Out

by Toshi Drake

Lightning Dragon Strikes Out is an MM novel featuring two stubborn fools, one a dragon, second chances, cosplay and tender loving care!

Nick is a human who’s fed up with his dragon companion, Phin. He’s tired of being an afterthought. With the help of a friend, he leaves his life behind, hoping for a chance at happiness, at being first, even if it means being without his dragon.

Phin is a Lightning Dragon. His greatest treasure is a man who has inexplicably turned hostile. Chasing Nick to the human realm, Phin discovers the joy of being one’s true self. With this knowledge, he finds the love he never knew he had.

In this humorous tale of costumes, outdoor naughty times, claimings gone awry, watch as two men find out what it means to be both treasures and mates.

This novel features friends to lovers, second chances and snarky best friends.

Live August 17


Out Last Month:

Stick the Landing

by Kate McMurray

Jake Mirakovitch might be the best gymnast in the world, but there’s one big problem: he chokes in international competition. The least successful of a family of world-class gymnasts, he has struggled to shake off nerves in the past. This time he’s determined to bring home the gold no matter what.

Retired figure skater Topher Caldwell wants a job as a commentator for the American network that covers the Olympics, and at the Summer Olympics in Madrid, he has a chance to prove himself with a few live features. He can’t afford to stumble.

Olympic victories eluded Topher, so he knows about tripping when it really counts. When he interviews Jake, the two bond over the weight of all that pressure. The flamboyant reporter attracts the kind of attention Jake—stuck in a glass closet—doesn’t want, but Jake can’t stay away. Topher doesn’t want to jeopardize his potential new job, and fooling around with a high-profile athlete seems like a surefire way to do just that. Yet Topher can’t stay away either….

Shortbread and Shadows

by Amy Lane

Hedge Witches Lonely Hearts Club: Book One

When a coven of hedge witches casts a spell for their hearts’ desires, the world turns upside down.

Bartholomew Baker is afraid to hope for his heart’s true desire—the gregarious woodworker who sells his wares next to Bartholomew at the local craft fairs—so he writes the spell for his baking business to thrive and allow him to quit his office job. He’d rather pour his energy into emotionally gratifying pastry! But the magic won’t allow him to lie, even to himself, and the spellcasting has unexpected consequences.

For two years Lachlan has been flirting with Bartholomew, but the shy baker with the beautiful gray eyes runs away whenever their conversation turns personal. He’s about to give up hope… and then Bartholomew rushes into a convention in the midst of a spellcasting disaster of epic proportions.

Suddenly everybody wants a taste of Bartholomew’s baked goods—and Bartholomew himself. Lachlan gladly jumps on for the ride, enduring rioting crowds and supernatural birds for a chance with Bartholomew. Can Bartholomew overcome the shyness that has kept him from giving his heart to Lachlan?

Saturday, August 1, 2020

The Dentist

The kids had--and this was a surprise!-- a dentist appointment this week.

The dentist office was really good-- took our temperatures outside (I was actually around 99.7 which means, I think, I have another ear infection--I get them a lot) and then let me sit in the lobby since I was the only one there and I wore my mask.

While we were there, we had some discussion as to whether or not ZoomBoy should keep going to this dentist or not, since he will be eighteen in a year and a half, and he's going to need his wisdom teeth pulled out, and possibly braces.

See, they're still going to a children's dentist, and while my children are fully adult-sized, I have much love for these people.

When Big T  was little, he had nursing caries. Before people get their judgy pants on, yes, I did give him apple juice at all hours of the night. Yes, I did know it would rot his teeth. But all of the things that work for putting a baby or toddler to bed without a bottle did NOT WORK for Big T--and I know, because they worked for the other kids, no problem. Big T did not do transitions, and he didn't do changes in routine, and he was always hungry, ALWAYS hungry, particularly when he was super tired. 

It was give him the damned bottle or have the neighbors report him to CPS because he screamed instead of slept. For days. (Yes, they threatened to, why do you ask?)

So we gave him the bottle and took him to the dentist to get his teeth sealed. 

I was young and naive--but not stupid. I called up the dentist and asked if they took children. That was a yes.

Do you take children with special needs?

Oh, absolutely.

Do you take... large children with special needs?

No problem, ma'am.

You're willing to anesthetize and restrain?

We don't think it'll come to that.



So I walked my 90 lb. 4th-grade sized toddler into the dentist office and filled out the paperwork, and got him into the dentist chair, and he's getting ready to let loose, scream, and tantrum. I'm desperately trying to calm him down and in walks a tiny, 5 foot tall woman, who is probably eight months pregnant.

She was maybe four inches taller than my son, who is about ready to start throwing himself around on that chair like the world's biggest fucking fish.

I say, "Can we give sedate him?" and she says, "No, we're not allowed to sedate minors! Hold him down!"

I made her stop--and we left, and the receptionist--who obviously sold me a bill of goods in the first place, called out, "We'll just wave your visit fee since it didn't work out!" as I was pulling my screaming, tantruming toddler out the front door. 

I was a little savvier with the next phone call.

"Can you accommodate special needs children?"

"Oh definitely."

"Are you sure? He's a big boy. I know you guys can't sedate children--"

"Oh, we can and we will. First we give them a magic popsicle that makes them loopy as fish, then we schwack them onto a sort of board that leaves their face exposed and immobilizes their body while we work on them--and we're really quick, they don't even have a chance to get traumatized. Trust us--your son will be in good hands."

I was SOLD. 

They were the nicest people. 

The place was originally run by a husband and wife, but their daughter eventually took over, and they have all been the kindest people. They love working on kids, and love seeing them grow up. Big T only needed the magic Kool-Aid popsicle and schwacky-board a couple of times before he was comfortable enough there to just go in, play video games while hewaited, and walk in and smile at the dentists because they were nice people. Chicken got magic Kool-Aid popsicles before her first fillings, and the younger kids are just as completely untraumatized and copacetic with the dentist because the dentists are good people.  

These were the people that got ZoomBoy so stoned to get his fillings the registrar at his middle school told me I should probably just take him home after his appointment, because he was staring into space and mumbling that his nostrils were cold.

I don't want to leave the kids' dentist. They've been good to us. And, I know, that as soon as I pull ZoomBoy, I'll probably pull  Squish, because the grownup dentist is about 20 miles away. 

So, they were regarding me kindly and saying, "Well, yes, he is six-foot-two, it may be time to look for an adult dentist. Let's get him another panorex and see what his wisdom teeth are doing. You may be ableto wait another year."

I really want to wait another year.

And maybe it's silly of me, but I just keep remembering how they understood what my difficult child needed, and gave it to him without judgment, and then were so kind, he eventually didn't need that much intervention anymore. 


It's dumb the things you're going to miss as your kids get older. I never really thought I'd miss the dentist.