Erica Scott: Life, Love and Spanking

Ruminations, opinionated observations, darkly humorous blathering and the occasional rant from an outspoken spanko and unapologetic attention wh–, um, hog.

Archive for the category “family”

And so it goes

She lives.

Been a rough patch, certainly. Sunday night I got email from my stepmother. We don’t keep in regular contact, as we’re both reclusive, so I hadn’t talked to her for a while. Imagine how I felt when she told me she’d nearly died. Apparently, she’d been feeling sick and nauseated with stomach pain for a couple of months, and her doctor was treating her for what he thought was an ulcer. Things worsened until she ended up in the ER, and an MRI showed she had gallstones that had migrated to several places, occluding a duct to her bladder and causing a widespread infection. So… surgery to remove the gall bladder, find all the stones and get rid of them as well, and put a stent in her bladder duct.

Six to eight weeks recovery, with a lot of pain and nausea. And then she gets to have surgery again to remove the stent, with another long recovery. She’s 85 years old, kids. She’s already dealing with a host of physical problems, including various food sensitivities and chronic sciatica. To quote her: “This sucks!” And how much can a body take before it gives out?

She was writing to me to apologize that we won’t be able to go out for my (upcoming) birthday lunch. I told her to please not worry about that. I wish I could do something for her, but I know how fiercely independent she is. She doesn’t want to be fussed over.

So, Monday and yesterday were raw. Monday, I had a chiropractor appointment… I’ve been a mess of tension and aches. I wasn’t my usual feisty self on the table; I didn’t gripe about the painful stuff he was doing, I got into the positions he asked, I was very passive. His comment? “You’re very compliant today. What’s wrong with you?” How well he knows me already.

Yesterday, Steve came over. We did not play; I was too despondent. All I did was crawl into his arms and cry on his shirt.

But the fog has to lift eventually. Life and work go on. Fake it till you make it and all that new age-y sh*t. I’ve worked. I’ve worked out. And I figured I’d make some attempt to post something here, so everyone wouldn’t think I’d disappeared into the ether.

So pardon me if this is disjointed; it’s simply a collection of random thoughts.

Yesterday I was playing Scrabble online, and this screen appeared. I swear, I did not create this, I didn’t rearrange any letters; it happened randomly. It made me giggle.

scrabble

I remembered another snippet from the party. After my lengthy scene with Ulf, during aftercare, I impulsively said, “Let me see your hand.” I just had a feeling… he turned up his palm. Sure enough, I’d thoroughly assed his hand — a blood blister and several red streaks. He was incredulous; said he hadn’t been aware of it at all.

Looks like this granny has still got it, huh?

Another random tidbit — I haven’t cut my hair in months. Usually, I get it cut and colored every six to eight weeks, but the last two times I got color, I didn’t cut it. It is the longest it’s been in years. John loves it, Steve loves it. I have mixed feelings about it.

I have never had sleek, sophisticated, polished hair. It’s just not me, and I wouldn’t even know how to style it that way. Once my hairdresser gave me a sleek blowout, and it felt so foreign and “not me” that I couldn’t wait to wash it out. I don’t put it up, because I hate my ears and don’t show them. So, for better or worse, my hair is big and wild. On the one hand, having it past my shoulders and down my back feels very sexy. But on the other, the ghost of my mother is in my head. “You’re too old for long hair.” “You need to style your hair somehow.” And, my favorite: “When are you going to do something about those rags hanging around your face?”

Tomorrow I’m getting my hair colored… I’m considering letting the cut go, again. Just to break away from the judgment of a “woman of a certain age” growing her hair long. I’m sorry, Mom… I love you, but STFU already. Get out of my head.

Took this selfie yesterday. What do you guys think? Grow it, or cut it back a bit?

20160913_155332

Finally… people tell me they like this blog because it’s real, because it’s honest. Well, in the spirit of honesty, I have a confession. I do photo-edit my pictures a little. Not a whole lot; I don’t know how to do anything fancy. I don’t have Photoshop, I just have a simple program with the basics. So I’ll erase bags under my eyes, or blur out those damned spots on my arms and legs. A little indulgence of my vanity.

But, you want real? Here is real. This is from yesterday. No photo-editing, no makeup, straight from the camera except for cropping and resizing. This is my depression face. It’s not pretty, but it’s me.

sadness

This is what Steve saw. He said I was beautiful. I think he’s crazy, but I love him for it.

Onward. There is work to be done. And this body won’t exercise itself, no matter how much I wish it would.

Hopefully some fun on-topic stuff soon. We’ll see.

OT: May I vent, just a little?

Don’t worry. I’m not going to talk about politics, or about terrorism, or about guns. Although the circumstances of late have got me on edge and are making my tolerance a lot lower for life’s little aggravations. So if y’all don’t mind, I need to blow off a little steam here, over my First World Problems.

My mother passed away in 2012, and my stepfather in 2014. Here it is the middle of 2016, and would you believe all the details of their trust still aren’t fully resolved?? I won’t bore you with who’s who and what’s what, but let’s just say certain people haven’t been cooperating. Not responding to requests, not communicating, not providing what’s needed. And so, things drag on and on and on. Why do people have to be so damn difficult? I have my crazy stepsister’s all-caps emails and one of her drunken rants saved on my voice mail. What a piece of work. She got more money than anyone else in the will, and she’s still complaining. In her last message, she slurred, “I wish Dad were here so I could shake some sense into him.” Really? THAT’S why you want your dad here? Ick. I wish she didn’t have my address and phone number. Thank goodness for caller ID.

Also, remember at the end of last year when I had a root canal and a crown restoration? Guess how much of that my dental insurance covered? Zero. WTF is the point of having dental insurance if they don’t pay for anything? Oh yeah, they cover cleanings and x-rays. Big whoop. But as soon as you need anything besides that, they deny you. I spent a fair amount of time online researching the racket that is dental insurance, and discovered that unless I pay a fortune, I’m not getting any decent coverage. If your dental insurance is covered by your office group plan, give thanks. Because an individual paying for their own plan is screwed. Soooooo… I am now trying something different: A dental discount plan. You pay a small annual fee, and then all your dental procedures are discounted. Not free, mind you. They’re still expensive. Just not as expensive. For example, the root canal that cost me $1300 would have cost $700. I spent about forty-five minutes on the phone with an agent today who explained it all to me. The good news? No waiting period. I’m on the plan immediately. More good news? My dentist and endodontist accept the plan. So now, if my teeth continue to fall apart, at least I won’t go broke as quickly. The plan is Aetna, so at least it’s not some Joe Blow dental plan that will get bought out before I get to use it.

But what a headache. This, on top of paying over $800 a month for medical insurance. This is the downside of self-employment. Still… I wouldn’t have it any other way. Everything comes with a price.

And finally — those of you who have been with me for a while, or who read my book, know that I had the Stepmother From Hell, my father’s third wife. When he finally wised up and unloaded her, he stayed close with her son, B, who is about eight years younger than I am. When Dad passed away, B came to help me with packing up his place, and he came to Dad’s memorial. He was a decent kid, nothing like his mother. After that, we kind of fell out of touch. I knew he had married and had a couple of kids (I got the Christmas cards and the erstwhile email), but we didn’t communicate otherwise. This week, clear out of the blue, I got email from him. Said he’s been through some “crazy life changes” and would love to get together to catch up. Coffee? Sure, I said. We agreed for this Thursday. This morning, he wrote again, asking if we could do lunch instead. Said he had to do something for his son later that afternoon, and that “wouldn’t leave sufficient time for his long-lost sister.”

I know he meant that in the nicest possible way. I know I should be flattered that he thinks of me that way. But I couldn’t help it; I felt creeped out. “I’m not your sister,” I thought. “I had a brother. You aren’t him. And I don’t share any of that bat-shit crazy woman’s blood with you.” Am I horrible? I don’t mean to be this way, but you have to understand — his mother made my life hell for years. I know it’s not his fault, but seeing him, hearing from him, reminds me of her and I feel almost sort of a PTSD. I mean, to this day I still can’t stand to hear the c-word, because she called me that all the time.

And what does he want, anyway, after all these years? What are these crazy life changes? Divorce? Am I a terrible person for wondering if he needs money for some reason? Ugh. Between John’s family and mine, I’ve known way too many truly crappy people. I am suspicious, and I don’t like being that way.

So yeah. I’m meeting B for lunch on Thursday. I am curious. And my dad was very fond of him. I guess it wouldn’t hurt to meet up and hear him out. I’ll just have to brace myself to hear about his mother. Maybe the witch is dead. Ding dong! Oh, please. Trust me, B has no illusions about Mommie Dearest. Years ago, when his first child was born, he said something along the lines of “I don’t want her [his mother] to come anywhere near him.” I think she’d be somewhere in her late seventies now.

Oy. I need to get my spank on. Soon. And I am way overdue for a Girls’ Night Out. I am hoping that both will happen next week. Meanwhile, this week I will stay busy with work and do my best to maintain some semblance of sanity in a world of chaos.

If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you…

OT: Mother’s Day

It occurred to me that I often write about memories of my father on Father’s Day, but I don’t do the same for my mother on her day. Kind of sad, really, but I simply don’t have as many stories about her. However, the other day on Facebook, a young woman posted about how funny it is to hear your parents cuss, and it reminded me of the first time I ever heard my mother drop the F-bomb.

My mother did not swear when I was growing up. At least, I never heard her do so. She was famous for using words such as “gosh” and “darn,”and she didn’t drink or smoke cigarettes either, which pretty much everyone’s parents did back then. As I got into my teens and cussing became something fun and bold to do, I thought Mom was kind of uptight and a bit of a prig.

When I was sixteen, my mom and stepdad lived in a house in Woodland Hills, one of the hottest areas of the San Fernando Valley. They had no air conditioning in that house. In the SFV summers, it got pretty miserable in there.

One weekend I was there, and it was a sweltering Saturday afternoon. My mom and I were home by ourselves, and trying to get comfortable. Mom thought she’d try to take a nap and went into her bedroom, pulling the curtains and turning on a small fan. I stayed in the living room and attempted distracting myself from the heat with a book and cold drink. Not ten minutes went by before my mother’s bedroom door came crashing open, Mom stormed out in just her underwear, and she yelled in abject frustration, “Aaaarggghh! It’s SO FUCKING HOT in here!”

I was so shocked at hearing that word come out of her face, all I could do was blurt, “Moth-errrrrrr!” She looked at me, fazed for a moment, then must have decided “oh, screw it, she’s old enough,” because she just sputtered, “Well, it is!” and then turned and stomped back into her room. I laughed until my stomach hurt.

After that? Suddenly my mother became Mrs. Trash Mouth. She confessed that she’d broken herself of the habit of swearing when my brother was a baby, and he started imitating a few of the more colorful words she uttered. Interesting coincidence, though — she could and would say anything, except for the “c” word. She had the same visceral reaction to it that I do, for her own reasons, I guess. She said my dad used to try to break her of it, desensitize by trying to get her to say it. “Think of it as a name!” he’d urge. “Say this over and over fast — Mike Hunt, Mike Hunt.” (How many of you just tried that?) But she couldn’t do it. Even when she lost her mind and was saying all manner of horrible things, she never spoke that word. I don’t think I will either.

I think on that ridiculously hot day, she stopped thinking of me as a kid and more like a young woman.

Anyway, I hope everyone who has a mother, or is a mother, had a nice day today. I made sure to send an e-card to my stepmother (the nice one who gave me the necklace, not the evil one who damn near wrecked my life). She just turned eighty-five. Her body may be falling apart somewhat, but her mind is still sharp as a tack. When I sent her a birthday greeting and she wrote to thank me, her comment was, “You know, I feel old, but 85?? No fucking way!” 😀

I hope I have her for at least a little while longer.

OT: My family

A comment was made to me recently. I don’t think it was intended to bother me, but it did anyway. Something along the lines of how I’m trying to drive you all nuts with my tease about who my family is.

Not my intention, and I’m sorry if it comes off that way.

Here’s the deal, for those who haven’t been following me for a while: I have three family members who are/were in show business. My father and cousin — TV writers/producers. My stepmother (the nice one, not the evil one) — an actress/dancer. I spoke of all three of them at length in my book, and have mentioned them many times in my blog. But I’ve never given their names. Why?

First, although I’m fairly open about who I am and what I do, I still don’t feel like being outed to the world. My father passed away in 1998 and most people under a certain age don’t remember who he was anyway. But to tell his name would give away my real name. My cousin and stepmother are very much alive, and mentioning either of their names would tie back to my father.

Second, while I’m not ashamed of what I do, I know it’s not widely accepted. And if I were to mention my family members’ names on here, that would mean that if anyone Googled them, my blog would come up in the search. “Whoa! Look at the kinky skeleton in so-and-so’s family closet!” Think of the embarrassment and awkwardness this could incur, for everyone involved. The consequences could be far-reaching. It’s not worth it.

Am I dying to share more information, stories, names? You bet. I’m very proud of these people. Even though their era is bygone and their names would mean nothing to most of my younger friends, I still wish I could reveal more. My father and cousin won nine Emmys between them. My stepmother was a stunningly beautiful and talented woman, one I often wished was my real mother.

So yeah. I tell the stories that I can, when I can. I love wearing the necklace my stepmother wore for 50 years, that was given to her by Jerry Lewis in 1962. I love that my dad co-wrote a sketch that is considered one of the funniest in TV history. I love that my cousin created indelible TV characters. But that’s all I can and will say. It is not my intent to tease or be obnoxious. It is my expression of pride, and my yearning to tell more. Because every time someone compliments my writing or tells me that I’m funny, I give a silent thank you to my DNA, the genetic talent passed on to me. Because there is a lot more to me than the spanky stuff. Mind you, I’m proud of that too. But it’s not all there is.

Who knows. Maybe when I’m older, everyone in question has passed on, and none of it matters anymore, I’ll say “screw it” and reveal it all. And then most people will say “Who??” and it will be rather anticlimactic. 🙂

Have a great weekend, y’all.

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