Family of Fruitcakes

I like to think I'm a relatively balanced person. I don't often go streaking through the hills stark naked (it takes a lot of liquor poured down my gullet, and a warm breeze to induce me to do so) and I haven't taken any long walks off a short plank that I can remember.

But when Shalebug passed away, there were moments I was mighty tempted. Luckily, the love of my kids, my husband and a nice merlot pulled me through my darkest hours.

I also had a little pharmaceutical help, those little miracle pills also known as antidepressants. I never had magic pills before and was skeptical of their value, but after a few months on those babies, my world slowly turned right side up and I gained the ability to not only get through the days and nights with out harming myself or others, but I was able to parent again.

A big deal when you have mouths to feed and souls to nourish. Especially after they just buried their little brother.

I don't apologize or make excuses for my need for those little happy pills; for shit's sake I had just walked through every parent's nightmare. Nor do I hang my head in shame and deny my relationship with those tiny little pills from Heaven. But soon, the time came to end our relationship, and with a nervous heart I broke up with my antidepressants.

I'm not walking any planks so I must have made the right decision.

But if I had known that those tiny little pills that I so desperately clutched within my greedy fists would now be the bane of my existence, I may not have so willingly hopped on the mood medication train as quickly.

Because if you take an antidepressant and admit to it to your friendly neighbourhood adoption asshats they just may question your sanity. And send you and your family straight to the nearest shrink so he may clinically assess your personality and your parenting abilities.

All in the name of covering your bureaucratic ass.

The voices in my head are still screaming at the injustice of it all.

Yet my family and I have this driving need to expand our family and share our craziness love with some innocent and unaware child, so we strapped on our sane shoes and loaded up to jump through the hoops. (Good thing we are tall, long legged folks around here...these hoops are getting pretty high.)

I was a little nervous exposing my inner self to a stranger but that paled in comparison to the idea of letting my husband and my children talk to the psychologist and reveal our collective demons.

It would be a freaking miracle if the powers that be let me keep my kiddies, let alone hand over a new one.

So I did what any nervous momma in this situation would do: I put on my favourite death metal tee shirt for luck, poured a little Irish cream in my travel coffee cup and told everyone to stay calm, tell the truth and make sure to look the man in the eye when they spoke to him.

In my opinion it's harder to rule a family crazy if they're all looking at you like you are the last piece of pizza on the platter and they're all starving.

In hindsight, we may have unnerved the dude a bit.

While he sequestered the kidlets to examine their parent's collective crazy ratio, Boo and I nervously filled out our clinical, personality and parenting assessment examinations. Boo got off easy with only having to fill in three booklets, to the tune of about 1500 questions.

Because of my past romance with the mood meds, I got an extra booklet. And because I'm the primary parent, he tossed in two more to see how well I knew my kids. All in all, about 2300 questions where I had to fill in the appropriate circles.

Do you often think of hurting yourself? Only when it's time to wax the beaver. Strongly disagree.

Do you ever think of hurting others? Does sitting on my mom and wanting to pull her hair until she screams for mercy constitute hurting someone? Hmmm, better put in strongly disagree just in case it's a trick question.

Does your child intentionally annoy you? Fuck yes...But I better not tell them that. Disagree.

Do you enjoy sex? Strongly agree. Especially after last night and the things my husband did to me...

Do you think the moon, the sun and the stars shine out of your ass? Abso-freaking-lutely. Strongly agree. They're gonna put me in a rubber room, so why not be honest about how much I love myself...

After three hours of filling in the circles (we didn't get to finish, it took that long) the freakishly thin shrink cornered Boo and I separately to drill us about our past, our present and our future. Boo says it went fairly well for him, but all I know is that perhaps my habit of making inappropriate comments when uncomfortable was a habit I should have left at home. The poor dude couldn't hide his horror and couldn't write fast enough to keep up with my nervous babble.

After six hours of this, we broke for the day. And came back fresh as newly sprung tulips for round two the next morning. Since I'm fairly proficient at filling in circles, I found myself pestering the office folk who looked at me like I was some new breed of circus animal while my husband continued to scratch his head and fill in his circles.

My children were alone with that man, spilling our secrets. I have never perspired so much. At one point, to make myself them feel better, I went to the window and pressed my nose up against the glass and made funny faces to lighten their mood. The doc didn't think that was so funny and promptly drew the blinds.

The man had no sense of ha ha.

After all was said and done and the milk was spilled, he followed us home to watch us in action as a family. Goody. No pressure or anything. The fact that I was in the middle of laundry and had left my bras and undies hanging from the rack with the door wide open for all to gaze upon shouldn't reflect on my housekeeping skills, right? At least he knows we where clean undies.

He also discovered I like black lace until Boo quickly shut the door.

We shared a nice meal with the pleasant, if not sickly thin, psychologist. He observed our lack of table manners and my children thought it would be great fun to tell him about the time I locked myself out of the house in the dead of the winter, or the time I lost my daughter in the mall, or the time I wasn't paying attention and the hundred pound wagon ran them both over, thereby sending both of the little ankle biters to the emergency room for stitches.

All the while he sat there and wrote everything down.

As my husband sweated bullets and I gave them the evil-mom look, willing them to shut the fuck up. Which they either didn't notice or they didn't care.

Most likely they didn't care. Buggers.

Finally, after two days of poking, prodding and blatantly judging, he walked out of our lives with our family summed up on a pad of yellow legal paper.

Boo had to all but sit on me to not snatch that pad of paper out from under his arm and run screaming into the bushes with it.

This was it. The last hurdle to jump in our bid for adoption. He will either stamp us a bunch of fruitcakes or give the go ahead to ruin some unknown kiddy's life and place said child with us.

It's out of our hands and in his now. Even my favorite adoption asshats can't do a sweet thing about it. They will have to rubber stamp us either approved or denied.

Until that day rolls around, I'm going to bask in my fruitcake status and not worry about whether or not we get a new kiddy. Because I already have the best kids, and they are just like me.

Slightly nutty.

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