Ketchup and Mustard

I feel like I haven’t been posting as often lately, or even putting as much time and effort behind the things I do post. I think I have some splainin to do. My world has been busier than usual, and I want to catch up with you guys. Except I don’t like ketchup, so I say we mustard up!


I apologize if that immediately made you hungry for hot dogs. I understand.

Here are a few things that have been going on the past few weeks:

My charming little eyelid infection both looks and feels much better, but is still technically hanging around. This little bugger is like the Donald Trump of my face. It’s arrogant, purposeless, and annoying, and yet I’m morbidly impressed that it’s still around after all this time, despite all the attempts to take it down.

It might also be sexist and xenophobic. Not quite sure yet.

On the upside of having frequent eye appointments, my eye doctor and I seem to have become bffs. We passed through small talk a long time ago, and have gone straight into serious conversations about my career plans, in which she forcefully encourages me to go into private practice. We also laugh about the intrusive nature of our small town, where neither of us can go anywhere without running into patients/clients. I assume, as her bff-patient, she’s not talking about me in those conversations.

She’ll probably ask me to be godmother to her son soon. And my answer will be yes, but only if there will be cake at the reception.

I just started volunteering in a NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) at a hospital in Austin. Parents cannot always be with their itty bitty offspring 24/7, so volunteers are brought in to hold and rock the infants while their parents are away. Human connection is important for all of us, but it’s VITAL for the healthy development of a newborn. If you have some free time and are interested in doing something like this, contact your local hospital and see if they have a program available 🙂

I’m sure I’ll write a more detailed post about this at another time, but let me sum up the experience for you by saying it’s awesome — minus these rigid rules I have to follow:

  • Rule #1: Do not attempt to hurl tiny infant across the room like a football, despite tightly-swaddled and football-like state.
  • Rule 2: Do not kidnap infant. Despite his/her cuteness, he/she does belong to other people and is not yours to take.
  • Rule #3: Do not even joke about #1 or #2. Parents and hospital staff don’t like it.


As I briefly alluded to in a couple of previous posts (here and here), I’ve been doing some researchin’ and writin’ about personality disorders for a particular project that I’m patiently putting together. (If you appreciated the alliteration that occurred just now, I shall give you an internet high five. If you hate alliteration, then you’re a monster, and I hope your fingernails spontaneously fall off.)


…Anyway, this project is kind-of-sort-of-maybe-hopefully going to be a book. I feel very timid using the b-word for some reason, which is why I keep referring to it as The Project, which sounds vague and cool at the same time. I’ve told very few people about it – not because I’m not excited about it (because I totally am), but because I fear that, for whatever reason, it won’t come true.


Maybe I’ll get tired of it, and stop working on it all together. Maybe I’ll finish it, but nobody will want to publish it. Or else, maybe I’ll finish it, AND a publisher will love it, but a freak tornado will come along and wipe out the publishing company,  taking my precious manuscript with it.


Either way, it seems like the more people I tell about the book The Project, the more times I’ll have to explain why it didn’t come to be.


Does anyone else tend to keep new and exciting things to themselves, in fear that it won’t work out? Whether it’s a possible job promotion, a new hobby, or maybe even a new exercise regimen, I think a lot of us find it easier to keep quiet about these things so that we don’t have to have embarrassing conversations later. But that’s such a bummer,  isn’t it? I’m dorkally excited and hopeful about The Project, and I shouldn’t keep it to myself just to avoid an uncomfortable conversation that may not even happen.


Besides, if it doesn’t work out, maybe all these people I tell will say supportive and nice things, and regale me with stories of their own letdowns. They might help me feel better. And even if they don’t, I still shouldn’t view my losses as embarrassing – if nothing else, I can say I tried something new, and I learned a lot of interesting things.



Hmm. That sounds suspiciously like Therapist Me coming out, because Real Me wouldn’t have such a mature view of failure. I think I shall reward my inner therapist with some chocolate.


10 thoughts on “Ketchup and Mustard

  1. I keep tons of things to myself because I don’t want everyone to know about all of my failures. With my luck and my track record… I’d say I have about a 21.68% success rate. Nah, that’s probably too generous. I’ve never told anyone offline that I’d love to turn one (or more) of my fiction pieces into a novel… I can’t even get past step one: coming up with a fake last name to go with Sandra… because I am almost certain I want a pen name…

    I’ve heard a million times that volunteering would be a great way for me to get out of the house more while I’m unemployed. But I’ve never found anything that didn’t trigger my anxieties. Until now. I want to do the baby thing. It sounds perfect for me. Being with another human… a sweet, innocent, adorable one… without any need for making painful small talk. That would totally work for me.

    And I really REALLY hope your eye infection doesn’t win in the end… because that would be a nightmare for all of us…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I probably have roughly the same track record, at least when it comes to writing. I’ve wanted to write a book since I was a kid, but I have a history of coming up with a great idea, writing maybe one chapter, and then just losing interest in it. I don’t even know how many times I’ve started something and then stopped it.

      On the other hand, I had to write tons of papers in grad school, so I keep thinking that if I look at this book (er, I mean The Project 😉) as just a really long paper, then maybe I’ll stick with it. We’ll see. I like the anonymity of a pen name, and yet, if it somehow became hugely popular, I think I’d probably blow my own cover just so I can get the recognition. Lol.

      The NICU thing is perfect volunteer work for me, too. When I’m holding a baby, I’m forced to be still and calm. I have something else to focus my attention on. It feels good to provide comfort for another human, but at the same time, the connection and feel of the tiny human brings me peace too.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I struggle with the exact same issue as far as a pen name. If I get famous…I’d probably want everyone to know it’s me! Problem is if the blogging world know about my book… and it would… then I need a pen name… or my real name is out there. Scary! Plus, I would not want the rest of the world to come to my blog and connect me-author to me-crazy-woman with tons of issues!

        I wanna hold babies…!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That’s true. It’s one of the reasons I don’t use my full name on here, either – I don’t mind blog peeps knowing what I do, but I don’t want “outside” people to connect professional me to blog me. I don’t want anyone thinking that since I write about silly things and cuss a lot, I’m somehow a less competent therapist.

        Maybe you could volunteer in a NICU! If you live in or near a big city, there’s a good chance you have a hospital with that program.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Big People, Little World – Just in Queso

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