Let’s Talk About Sex

We are all adults here, right? I know you all want to know. The truth is, I walk around naked all the time now. And in 8 days I will be an Empty Nester. Then it’s on like Donkey Kong, lol.

With the tummy tuck, everything gets pulled up. And I do mean everything. I have seen that some people think a “mons lift” is something extra you have to ask for from your surgeon. I didn’t ask for it, but I sure got it. Dr. Yamahata includes a little lipo to the mons with his Extended Tummy Tucks, and then pulls it all up when he closes. Like EVERYTHING gets pulled up. Easy access. Plus, no more huge belly in the way. Plus, feelin myself. Loving the skin I’m in.

My core muscles are still healing from the diastasis recti repair, still tight and they get fatigued and it feels weird getting into certain positions. But overall, tummy tucks and liposuction are good for your sex life. Real good. For both of us. Ask My husband.

I lived in shame for all these years. Lights out. Don’t touch my belly. Parts in the way and out of reach. I hated myself, remember? Well, not anymore. Now I am acutely aware of how much we were missing. It was me. In my head. Couldn’t let go.

Now I don’t care if the lights are off or not.

Now I like it when he touches my belly. And my hips. And everything.

I almost forgot about the nips. At first, after surgery, my nipples were hypersensitive. Like DO NOT touch them sensitive. Now, at 5 months after my breast reduction, they are just normal sensitive. Go ahead, husband. You can touch them now.

I’m ready.

Sex sells, right? Who knew that Extended Abdominoplasty also meant Extended Sex Life.

I’m pretty sure Dr. Yamahata did!


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1994, at the Pink Palace, Corfu, Greece. When in Greece…

8 Months Post-Op for Plus Size Tummy Tuck

Today I am 8 months post-op for my extended tummy tuck, and that’s more than half-way to where I want to be. I have been having so much fun with this TikTok stuff! And they are writing another article about me and my tummy tuck, so…I might pee my pants this time if it goes viral again, lol. So far, I have made a total of $26 from my Amazon Storefront, lol. I don’t yet know what I will make from the boob cast article. Maybe like $5, lol. Passive income!

Oh! And if you use my amazon storefront to get to your regular Amazon account, even if you don’t buy anything from my lists I get a tiny percentage for the referral if you click away and buy whatever it is you were already going to order from Amazon anyway. So help a sista out, y’all, lol! They don’t tell me who made purchases, but they do list whatever item was ordered. So, I dare someone to order a butt plug, cuz that would make a hilarious 15 second video, lol

And please follow me on TikTok! I only have like 1700 followers…I need to get to 10K to compete with the algorithm, lol.


8 months post-op for Extended Tummy Tuck with repair of my diastasis recti and liposuction to the flanks.

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High BMI Plastic Surgeons, a Nationwide List

I have been following @thecurvyamanda on Instagram and TikTok for over a year. She has an amazing curvaceous body, and she also happens to be plus-sized. She shared her plus-size plastic surgery journey and inspired me to embark on my own path to self-love. One of the things I found extremely helpful was her nationwide list of plastic surgeons that don’t automatically exclude patients solely based on their high BMI.

@anniemd007 sharing with permission from @thecurvyamanda

My own plastic surgeon, Dr. Wayne Yamahata, in Sacramento, CA is not on Amanda’s list. I am sure there are many other surgeons that look at a patient as a whole person, and not just the number of their BMI. In my case, my obesity and my age are my only surgical risk factors. My BMI was 41 on the day of my Extended Tummy Tuck with liposuction to the flanks and repair of my diastasis recti. At 8 months post-op, my BMI is 38. 10 years ago, when I first met with a plastic surgeon to discuss my options, I was told to lose 50 lbs. and then he would do the tummy tuck. Well, I lost 50 lbs. and gained it back multiple times over the next 10 years. After watching so many TikToks made by people like Amanda and especially one plastic surgeon in Australia that worked with high BMIs, I saw that fixing my hanging belly was a possibility. Last year, I made three consultation appointments. One appointment was with Dr. Deb Johnson. She automatically denied me based on my BMI, said to come back when I lost a significant amount of weight. I met with Dr. Yamahata and he didn’t mention my weight or my BMI. He asked me questions about my health history and used some sort of points system to determine if I was a candidate for surgery. We did discuss if I had been at a stable weight and for how long, but that’s it. I don’t have any other problems (no heart disease, no diabetes, no high blood pressure, etc) He looked at me as a whole person, more than just a fat person. I had scheduled a consult with Dr. Cristina Clark, after finding her name on Amanda’s list. I knew several people that had surgery done by Dr. Yamahata and he made me feel safe, so I decided to go with him. I cancelled the consult with Dr. Clark. More and more plastic surgeons are safely operating on people with high BMIs, all risk factors considered. These doctors are improving the lives of their patients, one tummy tuck at a time.

Before BMI=41
The before photo was taken after they had already done liposuction on my flanks and took skin from the “love handles,” but before the tummy tuck.

My advice is this: if you hate the shape of your body and have exhausted other weight loss options and have the means to consider plastic surgery, then do it! You deserve to be comfortable in your own skin, even as a plus-sized person. I suggest reading my blog post “Go Easy on Me” if you want to understand more of my “whys.”

*I am working on adding more names to Amanda’s list, so please DM me or comment if you don’t see your board certified plastic surgeon listed here, as long as they do not exclude patients solely based on their BMI.

Pre-op @thecurvyamanda
Post-op @thecurvyamanda

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Afterwhile, Crocodile

Papa Ding and Andrew, 1976-ish.

Robbie has covid. So irritating. Got him on Paxlovid the same day he had obvious symptoms and a positive at home antigen swab, done by me, probably more aggressive than he would have done. The second line popped up right away. Seems like me and Gma Pat are the last of the Covid Superheroes in the Anderson Clan. And Dylan. And Beau.

He’s isolated in Dylan’s old room, on the first bed I ever purchased. Got it at Macy’s on a brand new credit card when I was like 19? 20? We have all the air purifiers on and he wears a mask if he comes out of the room for anything. I make him get up and out of bed to shower and walk around and go outside and sit in the sun. He is fatigued and achy and has mild nasal congestion and a mild sore throat. Not worsening. Demanding, but not worsening. He wants cake. He’s a crybaby whiner head. And sometimes he’s an autocorrected duck. But he’s not in the icu and he’s not intubated and he’s not on ECMO and he’s not dead. Like my dad.

Triggered. But,

Thanks, science.

Thanks Paxlovid.

I worked at Hoops Sports Bar & Grill on Freeport Boulevard, back when I bought that bed. Must have been 1992? 93? I was a waitress, with a black apron and a fancy manicure. I made good tips and minimum wage. My rent was only like $225/month. Todd used to throw food at me and Clint or Paulie were behind the bar. Our regulars were the OGs from Fuji cuz they owned the place, a couple of mailmen, a fellow polo parent and some of his cronies that shall remain nameless, and all of my friends. We were in the same building as the old Farrell’s Ice Cream Parlor. The one the airplane crashed into and killed 12 children and 10 adults and injured 25 others, in 1972. Now it’s the Police Department.

One night, I was standing at the cash register near the front door and several police officers came in all stealth like, guns drawn, looking at me like where is he? Is there a problem, Officers? They signaled me to get behind them. That was whack. Some silent alarm had gone off, apparently. Other than that weirdness, it was a fun place to work. From Friday or Saturday DJ dance club to Sunday morning brunch to Monday Night Football, it was sometimes busy and often not and eventually it closed and I was on unemployment for awhile. I was still trying to take classes at Sac City College, but mostly just dropped them. Surviving. Falling in real love. Living my own life.

One night, when sleeping over at Robbie’s apartment, my Mazda GLC was stolen from the alley behind his apartment building at 1818 G Street. I hated that bucket and was so glad it was stolen. I walked out to go to work Sunday brunch and it was gone. I thought maybe Robbie or Erik played a joke on me and moved it. Nope. That car sounded like a rattle-trap car. It would backfire and rumble and smoke and I didn’t have money for maintenance. I drove it until the thing wouldn’t move anymore. It super sucked when the police said they found the car and I had to go pay hundreds of dollars to get it out of impound and it had finger print dust everywhere and smelled like homeless people. No offense intended to the unhoused. But, if this story was scratch and sniff…you would understand.

I had that car towed to my dad’s house in Fairfield once, cuz he said he would get it fixed for me. I was desperate and it was a rare interaction. It was necessity. It was only temporarily “fixed.” Snap, crackle, pop pop pop. He gave me a few hundred dollars when I told him I needed some help. He wasn’t an everyday dad, but when I asked for it he found a way or my grandparents would. It wasn’t easy to always have to ask for basic necessities. Yes, at that point I was technically an adult, but it had always been that way. Nothing was automatically given or to be relied upon. Like a tightrope walker without a safety net. Just gotta land on your own two feet.

My grandfather was the Chief of Police in Fairfield. When he retired, he opened a bar. Later, he bought a piece of property next to Johann’s. Home of hot dogs and pancakes. Ding’s Cocktail Lounge became a Fairfield landmark and was around up until the year I got married, 1999. I mean, that’s when my Grandfather sold it. It does still exist, with a whole different vibe, today. But the OG Ding is dead.

And so is my Gma Helene. She was the second wife. I am named after my father’s mother, Anne Marie, the first wife. She died before I was born. I have heard she died of a broken heart. There may have been a scandal of some sort, but I was never part of that conversation. Helene was the only grandmother I knew on that side of my family. I spent so much lovely time with her. I don’t think my aunts, uncles, or cousins know quite how special our relationship was, or how close I was to both Gma Helene and Papa Ding. I say that because to them, I’m mostly peripheral at this point. On the side. Not in the fold. I was the first grandchild and had my grandparents all to myself for like 10 years. My mom was always sending me to their house for the weekend. I happily went. It felt like love and stability when I was there. I was proud to share my grandfather’s last name, until the inevitable “this is Randy’s daughter.” My time with my grandparents made up for the lack of time with my dad, back then. It doesn’t anymore.

I would wake up and go sit in the bean bag in front of cartoons on the console TV with the round channel dial, click-click-click. My grandma Helene would bring me orange juice and sourdough toast with butter. My grandfather was already out of the house, off to have coffee with the regulars or out to help a friend with something on the ranch, or IDK…just out and about. Never idle. Then gma and I would go to the bar so she could do the books. I loved going to the bar with her in the early mornings. Sometimes she would take me over to Johann’s for a giant pancake. She would order it and go back to the bar to work while I stayed there to eat. It seemed safe. Then I would walk back to the bar and play Ms. Pac Man, the kind that was a table you could set drinks on with an ashtray, still clean cuz it was early. High Score. Or, I would play pool, and use the cheater stick. I remember the feel of the chalk on my hands and how I would rack ‘em up, with precision. No 8-ball rule when you play alone. I would play all my favorite songs on the jukebox. I played Upside Down by Diana Ross over and over and over again and dance and sing like no one was watching. I loved those lyrics. And Hopelessly Devoted to You by Olivia Newton John. Unlimited quarters.

The bartenders were my best friends. There was Georgie Porgie Puddin’ Pie who kissed the girls and made them cry and when the boys came out to play, Georgie Porgie ran away. He let me come behind the bar and use the gun for my orange juice or my Shirley Temple and I got my own pile of cherries. And smokehouse almonds in the little package. My grandpa called them ammonds, no L. They taught me how to play dice. I love the sound of the shake of the leather dice cups and then pounding them on the bar and the sound of the dice landing., clickety-clack. There was Hoppy, who was always cleaning. They had those towel machines in the bathroom, the ones that go round and round. And the urinals had those smelly disinfectant thingys that the men peed on. Ew. And there was always Blackie, he was a regular and my grandfather’s friend. They all made me feel loved. I was their early morning entertainment.

My grandmother had a cluttered office with liquor bottles stacked high on wooden shelves and it had an underground safe buried into the floor. It had a barrel-key lock and a combination lock and fake floor that made it invisible. She let me open it and get the bank bag out. After she did the books, we would go to the bank drive-thru to make the deposit. She told me that every week she deposited $5 into an account for me. That seemed like a lot when I was little. They probably had to use that money to pay legal fees or bail my dad out of jail…cuz it was never given to me.

Gma loved going to the horse races. She was a gambler. She would take me with her and let me bet. Like I literally could walk up to the betting window and place my own bet, without an adult with me. $2 to Show on Wandering Whisper, please. Gma liked the trifecta. I loved those days. She wore hot pink lipstick, always. She would secretly smoke cigarettes, but only at the track. “Shh, don’t tell Grandpa, he doesn’t like it when I smoke.”

My mom would take me to K-mart to pick out back to school clothes and she would put them on layaway then ask my grandma to pay for them. And those blue-light special ham sandwiches. I always came home with new K-Mart clothes or Kinney’s shoes. I remember a particularly favorite outfit my gma bought me. I picked out a pink satin bomber jacket paired with black cholo pants and china flats. I loved that jacket. I wore it to school on Monday. I thought my grandparents were rich, because they owned the bar and a nice house and a boat and they always had enough money to buy me clothes and shoes and to give my mom whatever she asked for. They were generous. My dad never paid “child support.” But if we needed something and asked, they always gave my mom what she needed. But, it sucks to have to ask for basic needs. Forever.

Grandpa was always home by dinner time. Sometimes, if he had been at the bar overlong, he was drunk when he came home. I could always tell because everything was funny. He was a happy drunk, at least when I was around, so it was all good. Sometimes he cooked or gma cooked, but I loved it when he did. He made the mundane delicious. Here, try these pickles I made, Andrew. Or here take this smoked trout home, it’s good on crackers. Oh, my buddy gave me some alligator, let’s grill it. Take this venison home, pound it out, season it with salt and pepper, dredge in flour and fry it in oil. You’ll love it. I made spaghetti sauce, take some home. Albondigas for dinner, sound good? We usually had fresh bread and butter and an iceberg salad on the side and they bought Catalina dressing for me cuz I liked that tangy sweetness. I sat in that folding metal step-stool booster seat that all households had in the 70’s. Gma’s specialty was Peach Cobbler. We always sat down to the table for dinner, the 3 of us. I loved that. After dinner, there was usually some football or baseball game on. I would sit in the crook of my grandfather’s legs on the couch with him, snuggled. Sometimes we would play ping pong in the family room, like across the room from each other, no table. I wonder how many ping pong balls they found in the light fixtures when they remodeled. Probably at least 100. Gma would bring us both nightly ice cream. Dryers Vanilla for him, Rocky Road for her, and a little of both for me. With Hershey’s chocolate sauce. He would try to teach me Spanish so I could at least count. Mi Espanol es muy malo, pero entiendo mas que hablar. I speak Spanglish a lot at work, and rarely need a translator, so that’s cool. Necesitas algo? Tiene dolor? Quieres mas medicina por dolor?

They had a vacation home at Lake Berryessa. It was a mobile home. A double wide with a huge wooden deck over looking the lake with stairs that led to the dock. Those weekends were the best weekends. My grandfather had a pontoon boat with downriggers for fishing deep in the lake. We would go out fishing on the boat at least once a day, sometimes twice. Morning and evening. He would pull me slowly on the tube on the way home after we brought the lines in. Grandma didn’t go out on the boat with us. That was our time. He let me choose the radio station and he let me drive the boat. I can bait a hook, land a fish, kill it, and clean it. Cook it in foil on the grill with butter and lemon and herbs. Rainbow Trout preferred. Thanks, grandpa. I loved those days. All of them. I don’t ever remember a day filled with tears when I was with them. They made me feel so loved. They always wanted me, never said sorry no we can’t have her this weekend. They kept all our phone numbers and knew where we were, even when me moved. Again. We had claim to several pages in their address book. They were the source of info. Where’s my dad? When is the last time you saw him? Can you come get me?

There were many times that my mom didn’t want to make the drive from Sacramento to Fairfield, a 45 minute drive, to deliver me to them. She would take me to downtown Sacramento and put me on a Greyhound Bus. Alone. When I was a child. Can you believe that? I would try and sit in the front seat near the bus driver and hope that no one sat next to me. Lots of creeps rode the bus, for sure. That’s something else I would never do as a parent. Gen-X, the neglected generation. Lucky I didn’t get trafficked. I don’t ever remember having to ride the bus back to Sac. One of them always drove me home on Sunday afternoon. Friday night bus rides and Sunday drives. Here’s the money you asked for. When can she come visit again? Love you, Andrew. That’s what my Papa Ding called me. See you later alligator. Afterwhile, crocodile.

I miss them. I miss knowing they were there if I needed them. They gave me a name to be proud of and I was so very lucky to call them mine.


Helene and Ding with their first grandchild, Anne Marie, in 1973.
Helene, Annie, and Ding in 1992.
Ding and Helene with their first great-grandchild, Dylan, on the day after he was born, 2001.

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Annie D’s Top 10 Best Mommy Makeover Must Haves for a Smooth Recovery and the Mama on a Budget 2022

This one is for my plastic surgery babes. I am now an expert in Plus Size Plastic Surgery Recovery. Oh, and I’m also an RN with post-surgical recovery experience in an acute care facility. It’s much harder to be the patient. So, I thought I would share some of the things I purchased to make my at home recovery go smoothly.

First, let’s talk about sleep. You are going to sleep A LOT for the first couple weeks, at least. And sleep is exactly what you should be doing, cuz that’s when your skin repairs itself. I won’t pretend to be an expert on the physiology of it, but I read it somewhere, and I only read reliable sources. Dr. Google for the win. Now, I know that a lot of people swear by renting a recliner or purchasing one with the plan of sleeping in it for several weeks of their recovery. In my opinion, recliners are great for naps. They are great for watching TV and reading and eating. But, you are going to want to be in your bed. I promise you. That first week goes by in a drug-induced painful blur. The second week goes a little better, but you are 100% going to want to be in your bed. It is so much more comfortable and you can adjust your pillows to change your position when you are uncomfortable. And it’s so much softer on your stressed-out and wounded body. It hurts enough. Don’t make it worse. That being said, you can’t lay flat after a tummy tuck. You must lay with your torso and your legs elevated so that your body is shaped in a sort of wide V shape. You are not supposed to stretch out your abdominal muscles or your incision.

Here is where Amazon comes to the rescue. Also, it must be said that there are some things that I am willing to spend money on, and some things that I am very frugal about. Like a Marshall’s or TJ Max shopper. Or an outlet store. I want good quality for the cheapest price. So I did a lot of research before I made these purchases. Stick with me and I will save you money.

My first recommendation is to buy a wedge pillow and a leg elevation pillow. Here are the two that I bought for myself and used for at least 8 weeks (clickable buttons below will take you to the product) :

The terrible, awful, no good, very bad first night after my tummy tuck. In my own damn bed.

A travel neck pillow is just as important, if not more, honestly. I used mine all day e’ryday, 23/7. It didn’t matter if I was in bed or in the lounge chair, I had that airline pillow around my neck. You must sleep on your back after a tummy tuck for at least 5-6 weeks, depending on what your surgeon says. I think it’s the only reason I was able to sleep on my back for 4 months, seriously. I had a tummy tuck and then 10 weeks later I had a breast reduction. It kept me from turning onto my side in the middle of the night for four months and it allowed me to nap in the chair in the living room. Amazon to the rescue again. Click below:

Now I’m going to talk dirty to you. Not really, cuz my ass is the cleanest it’s ever been. I bought a bidet so my husband would not have to wipe my ass. He’s very thankful. He did have to blot to dry for a couple weeks, but that’s it. Totally worth it. I bought a non-electric, ambient temperature, easy to install, high quality, dual nozzle bidet off Amazon. I installed it myself. I told my husband it was his Xmas gift. It’s the gift that keeps on giving. I highly recommend this one:

If you are going to have drains, this is the robe for you. The fabric is thick and soft t-shirt material and it has pockets for your drains on the inside. I wore one of these home from the surgery center and frequently at home. I had four drains coming out of my mons. If you want to know the detailed torture of that, please read my blog post about it. They didn’t remove the last drain until three weeks post-op. That sucked. Click below:

Wearing the Gownies Robe into surgery!

The Swell Hell after plastic surgery is no joke. The swelling goes on for weeks to months, up to a year. After any kind of surgery, you are also at risk of blood clots. DVT or Deep Vein Thrombosis. One way to prevent both of those is to wear compression socks. Here are some cute ones I found on Amazon:

Now, this stuff is magic. Don’t leave home without it. We have all heard that arnica does wonders for pain, swelling, and bruises. Liposuction causes all of the above. After my daily shower I would have my husband help rub this cream all over my back and abdomen. It also has menthol in it, and it was so soothing. When I ran out of the first tub, I quickly ordered another. Don’t touch your eyes until you wash your hands, though. It’s like wasabi. Click below:

You are going to want to wear a nightshirt that buttons completely down the front. Your drains can hang in between the buttons and be pinned to the nightshirt on the outside. You are not going to want to pull anything over your head for the first couple weeks. This is the only way. And this nightshirt is super cute and kinda sexy in a grown up smart girl way and the fabric is soft and light and slightly stretchy. So comfy. I chose black like my soul. (Plus, black hides blood stains if you ooze.) Click below:

And for those times when the pain pills just aren’t enough and the swell hell is at its peak for the day, this may just save you. I found this extra large cold compress/gel ice pack and used it for at least 20-30 minutes nearly every night for months. Click below:

And now, for the faja. You will live in your compression garments. My surgeon gave me two Stage 1 fajas to take home from the surgery center after my procedure. Those were the full-length fajas. After 6-8 weeks you will want to move on to a Stage 2 faja, and I found that these Columbian fajas were high quality and more affordable than some of the more well-known brands. Follow the size charts, using your measurements. I started in a 3X and now I’m in a 2X. I think I may try the XL soon. The instructions say not to machine wash and dry, but I always did, everyday. I had two to alternate. They may last longer if you hand wash and lay flat to dry, but I don’t plan on wearing the faja for more than a year anyway. My kids made me play COD with them and my player name is FajaHole180. Cuz that’s funny AF. You pee and poop through the hole in the crotch. For reals. It’s like a trust fall, each time. Hence, the daily washing. It’s the only way. Click below:

New faja, who dis?

That’s my Top 10 Best Mommy Makeover Must Haves. For more recommendations, please click the button below for links in my Amazon Storefront!

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Barbie Girl

I am 7.5 months post-op for my Extended Abdominoplasty aka Plus-size Tummy Tuck, with repair of my diastasis recti and liposuction to the flanks. My BMI was 41 on the day of surgery. Now it vacillates between 37-38. I’m short AF. Just 5’almost4”. Women’s sizes are weird, as you know. I wore anywhere from a 12-24 or XL-3x, pre-op, depending on the fabric and manufacturer, style and how much I wanted to squish in. Now I wear anywhere from a 12-16 or M-2X. Things just fit better, even if I’m still plus size.

I have broad shoulders and these narrow hips are the reason I had two c-sections. I am an apple shape, at least. With swimmer shoulders. I was a breast stroker, lol. And I liked the IM cuz I liked butterfly but I only wanted to do two laps of it and everyone else was slow in breaststroke so I could pull ahead, then.

My surgeon did the best he could do, safely. He removed 17 lbs of skin and subcutaneous fat and 2L of fat via liposuction. My tummy tuck incision is near circumferential. It starts in the small of my back and wraps completely around. My scar is darker in the places where I had spitting stitches and delayed wound healing. I put silicone scar cream on it everyday in hope that it will fade, with time. Like all scars. Some you will always see, no matter how much care you take to make them fade. Parallel. With life’s scars.

I am recovering well, at this point. But if there is a range, I seem to be on the longer track. They say 6 to 12 months before you see the final result. I’m more than half-way. When they do liposuction, it messes up all the lymphatic vessels in your abdomen. So, at the end of the day when you have tried to hydrate and eat a smallish dinner, your lymphatic system just can’t keep up with moving all that fluid where it’s supposed to go…and it ends up getting caught up. Stuck. Like our emotions. All blown up in the mid section. My belly is taut as a drum and uncomfortable and rounded by bedtime. It’s slightly better with compression, but I’m trying to wean off of it, so sometimes I wear it and sometimes I don’t. There are pros and cons to the faja. Also, with the diastasis repair, he cinched me up tight. I had like a 4 inch gap between the muscles, and he said he did some cinching on the transverse muscles, as well. This is cool and all, but that also limited the space for things like my stomach and intestines and lungs. So I don’t eat nearly as much as I used to, because it gets uncomfortable. But my binge-brain isn’t caught up with my abdomen yet. I’m hoping once my lymphatic system repairs itself that I will see a little more waistline. I’m trying not to get caught up on the number on the scale and just accept myself in a way I never have before. Trying to love myself, at this weight. As I am today.

What I have learned, finally, after all these years, is that loving yourself also means taking care of yourself. And isn’t that a loaded statement? How do you define taking care of yourself? It’s different for everyone. For me, it means trying to get 100g of protein in each day, even if I have to drink it. It means eating more fruits and vegetables on a consistent basis. It means drinking at least two hydros of water and moving my body everyday. Sometimes I walk, sometimes I swim, and today I cleaned the kitchen and bathroom, lol. It means setting stronger boundaries and maintaining them. It means trying to see the beauty and/or at least the normal. It means trying to avoid triggers and people that disturb my peace.

My abdominal muscles are still tight and weak. They scream at me when I try and exercise, but in an I Feel You way, not an I Can’t Do This way. Also like my emotions. I compensated for my large pannus, or apron belly, by widening my stance when bending over and I tilted my hips while arching my lower back to try and give the illusion that my belly was smaller than it was. It didn’t work, but because of my body mechanics for what, the last 15 years at least, I feel like I need PT to train me to move the right way. To hold my skeleton correctly. I mean, I can feel the difference when it’s right and when it’s wrong, but I have to constantly remind myself to adjust. To stand up straight and tall with my shoulders back and my hips tucked under. Chest out.


Chest out?! I would never! Cuz flaunting my giant boobs would have made me a slut. Right? Well, now I can hold my head up high and stick my 42C tits out without offending anyone. Without looking like I had something to prove. Looking normal. Finally.

You see, I felt grotesque. Misshapen. And yes, I know it was the weight gain that did it. I got issues, what can I say? My escape was my plastic surgery after years of failed diet and exercise and PCOS. It cost me $17800, BTW. So I did earn it. I worked for it. Hard. It was worth every extra pandemic shift and I would do it again. For incentive pay, that is. And to be real, even had I lost the weight, I would still need a tummy tuck. That size pannus does not just go back to normal on its own. I feel strongly that whatever it takes to help you find a way to love yourself, you should do that. Even if the world thinks you did it wrong.

You do you, Boo.

I could have kept all of this to myself. I really could. And I do mean all of it. But I know that on this wild ride of a journey, I have been helped by others who chose to share their experiences. The ones that were braver than me and went first. The ones that have learned to love themselves and all their curves. The ones that put on the bikinis despite their rolls and the ones that dance like no one is watching. And especially the ones that dance like the whole damn world is watching and they fuckkng rock that shit and look amazing while doing it.

You can still be hot AF and be over 200 lbs. Barbie can eat a cheeseburger now. They really need an apple shape Mid-size Barbie with swimmer shoulders, though.

I had some really cool Barbie stuff when I was a kid. I never had the Barbie swimming pool, and I really wanted that. But I had the Barbie Dream House, the one with the elevator. I’m pretty sure I got that when we lived with Tony #1. I got everything when we lived with Tony #1. I had the Barbie carrier for your ballet stuff, too. I took ballet and tap. I loved tap shoes. Falap 1-2, falap 1-2. I inherited some of my mom’s Barbie stuff. The one with the short brown curly hair. Like Rizzo. I had wicker furniture for them. So many clothes and shoes, I even had Barbie size hangers for the Barbie clothes. My grandma Annie had so much Barbie stuff. I think she had the Winnebago and camping gear. All the old ones. High end collectibles, but we didn’t know it then. I wish I still had that stuff. I wish I had more tangible things to tell this story of my life. When you move a lot, you get rid of things along the way, like you get rid of the people that hurt you. One by one, cut, drop, close the door, goodbye. Until goodbye becomes hey how you doing I know we were all fucked up back then, but let’s give it another go, shall we? I know I used to be violent and abuse you while your daughter watched, but I love you and you love me so I will move in with you, ok?

I was in 9th or 10th grade when Tony #1 came back into our lives. That was weird. Like, I understand why it’s good that the first two marriages ended. Remember, Tony #1 was Husband #2 and Step-Dad #1. I would never stay with a cheater cuz I am not mature enough to forgive that (that’s Husband #1) And I would never stay with someone that A) was a big time drug dealer and B) someone that beat the shit out of me while my child watched. Those marriages needed to end.

But why the fuck would you ever get back together with a man that beat the shit out of you?? I don’t give a fuck how much love there was/is/will always be. Thankfully, that episode was short lived. I think he ended up cheating on her. Such an asshole.

So broken.

All of us.

So Barbie had the perfect life. Except for the swimming pool. I took Barbie and her friends to the lake, to my friend’s houses, and they swam in the bath tub with me. Only children can play by themselves for hours at a time by living that Barbie life. From getting it all out of the toy box and decorating their “home” to going on “vacation” wherever I went. They can live a whole silent life in your head. A perfect life. And then they get locked away and eventually lost to garage sales and moving trucks.

I still have Mrs. Beasley, though. And my stuffed Smokey the Bear. He even still has his badge. I think that’s it, though. Just those two. I have no idea if that’s normal cuz I live with a half-hoarder that has so many toys from his stable childhood. And we have saved too many of our children’s toys. Our childhoods do not compare. Thank the Goddess for that.



After photo taken at 5 months post-op.
After photo taken at 5 months post-op.
After photo taken at 5 months post-op.

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Dill Chicken

It must have been 7th grade when we lived on 45th Street in East Sac. Not 45th and J. Not even 45th and H. More like 45th and F, if you know what I mean. Not the Lady Bird street. It was Doc’s house. He was nice enough, unless I ate his Swiss Almond Haagen-Dazs or drank his soda. Even before we lived with him, he would cook dinner for my mom. And me. Bottle of wine for them, candle lit. Sade or Whitney Houston playing on the record player. Or Linda Rondstadt. That was a good one. I like them all, really.

He had guest rooms where his son used to sleep, before his divorce. And a real office where a Doctor sits and charts and dictates and…and…doctors. But I think I slept on the couch when my mom wanted to sleep over there. Then we moved in.

I don’t think he ever really liked having me around. I was just baggage. He tried, I think. I remember ski trips to Tahoe and laughter. Usually at his expense. It was easy to make fun of him. He was the book smart not streetwise type. All up in his brain, deciphering. Maybe that’s why he didn’t like me, I was on to him.

He didn’t have a TV in the living room, that I remember. He only had a tiny TV on the kitchen table. I would sit there after school and eat his Swiss Almond Häagen-Dazs. Not all of it. Just some. Just enough to piss him off. I would only sit there and do that when no one was home. Binge. I would watch Tootie and Mrs. Garret and wish I went to boarding school. I even found out about a real boarding school called Cate and got them to send me their brochure. When they were home, I was mostly in my bedroom. With my boom box and the Whodini tape. I listened to that tape over and over again. I know all the words to Five Minutes of Funk and could rap it for you. And Prince. Purple Rain. New Edition was still the shit (and always will be). And FM 102.5. I was a Top 40 girl. I have a funny story about Rick Dees, someday I will tell you that one, lol.

This was a healthy food phase of life. They did triathlons and 100 mile bike rides. Fine with me, I had lots of time to wander the streets of Sacramento and walk the line between innocence and experience. Do as much as we could while flying under the radar.

I think I had my own phone line. Like my own number. I guess that’s today’s equivalent of a cell phone. I spent a lot of time on the phone with friends and when I wasn’t on the phone, I was with Sara. She was my best friend. She flip-flopped weeks between her dad’s house and her mom’s. I pretty much flip-flopped with her. I was already planning my escape, way back then. Dissociate.

That was the year I had my first kiss on the corner of 37th and J St. We used to hang out at Sidewalk Pizza with some skater boys. He was in 8th grade and I liked him. Took me at least a week to get the courage to let him kiss me. I was so nervous about it…lol. We used to follow those skater boys around East Sac, wherever there was a half pipe in the driveway.

I smoked pot for the first time in 7th grade. I was 11. I was put up a grade, remember? Everyone was at least a year older than me. Always. They were growing up fast, too. Everybody has a reason. I’m not special.

We drank stolen alcohol. Sometimes we drank California Coolers that were purchased for us by my mother. One of us had a party every weekend. Under the radar. What radar? There was even a dance club called the 2nd Level, downtown, for ages 12 and up? Or was it 14? Or 16? I can’t remember. But I was 11 or 12 when we went there for the first time. Sara’s cousin, Forest, took us there. I remember the smell of clove cigarettes. I don’t think our parents knew we went there. Knowing what we did there, I can’t see how someone would allow it. Or maybe I can.

Doc used to make this chicken dish. We called it Dill Chicken. Robbie won’t let me make it cuz he hates it, lol. But I liked it. I liked having Doc cook for us. We usually had yellow squash or zucchini with it, sliced, steamed, with grated cheese, garlic salt, and dill. I learned how to make the Dill Chicken by watching him make it. You take the skin off boneless chicken thighs or breasts, place them in a glass dish. Pour Berenstein’s Restaurant Recipe Italian Salad Dressing over it, then Worcestershire sauce, then soy sauce, and then cover it in dill. Like totally covered in dill. Then broil it. Easy.

My mom kept making that one even after they broke up and we moved out. Each one of them have a food attached to them, in my memory. Doc’s was Dill Chicken and Haagen Dasz. George’s was chili with the red bag of seasonings and Entemann’s Donuts. Darius’ was Mac n cheese for some reason and Larry’s was this ground turkey, rice, and tomato soup that his brother would make for their dogs. It was good. Lucky dogs. My dad’s was fish on the grill in aluminum foil. And Catalina salad dressing with iceberg lettuce and tomatoes and salami and sour dough toast. Or is that my Papa Ding and Gma Helene? Maybe I should make a cook book. Recipes from an Unsettled Childhood, by Annie D.

After finding my blog, my mother first sent me some corrections to some “inaccuracies.” I fixed a couple things, and some of her corrections I thought were bullshit so I didn’t change them. Then she told me my writing is “soulless blather.” Among other things a loving mother would never say, in her right mind.

No soul. Numb. Do you think I am numb to any of this? Not anymore. That’s why I write. It’s your choice to read it.

Then a couple days later she tried to comment on one of my posts and said my writing was beautiful. Bipolar much? Damage followed by expression of love. Welcome to my whole life. Love doesn’t conquer ALL. All she is doing is confirming why I am maintaining these no contact boundaries. Just when the writing was softening them. Concrete doesn’t burn, right?



  1. long-winded talk with no real substance. Similar: prattle; chatter

Just so you know, I only write with my soul. My soul is written throughout these passages. My soul is so tired, though. Tired of walking on egg shells in fear for it. Tired of losing myself in exchange for anyone else’s comfort. Tired of pretending like shit didn’t happen and it’s me that’s the source. I was a victim, but I do not live in victimhood. I am a god damn triumph. If you cannot recognize that in these words, perhaps this isn’t the blog for you. You might not be wrong about the blathering. I acknowledge that. I mean, I do think there is substance, but I am fully aware that I am all over the place. That’s cuz I HAVE BURIED MY MEMORIES for 49 years. The timeline of my life isn’t a straight line, in my mind. I’m hoping if I just let the memories all pour out here, eventually we can piece it together. So for now, I will keep blathering. I’m allowed to write the truth about MY LIFE, even when the truth hurts. If you really follow along, I hope you find the thread of love and strength right next to the pain. Those things don’t cancel each other out, you know. They exist at the same time in everyone’s story. Look for it. It’s there.


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Sink or Swim

After my mom’s car accident, she got an insurance settlement. I can’t remember how much it was. It was enough to buy her a brand new candy apple red Honda Prelude, the nicest car she ever bought herself. It was cute and sporty and seemed to elevate us. When she could walk again, she also booked us a trip to Europe. Three weeks, I think?

This was the summer before I started high school. We were supposed to go visit her family in Holland and travel around Western Europe. We were both very excited about the trip, we had to get passports. We went to Macy’s to get new clothes for the trip. I remember I got some new white keds, some cute capri jeans, and a white sleeveless button down with rainbow colored vertical stripes. Always vertical. Suck it in.

Everyday, I had chores. The usual ones like washing the dishes and taking out the trash, cleaning my room. They were expected to be done before she got home from work. Normal.

About two weeks before the trip she added her room to my chore list. She had a huge pile of clean clothes that needed to be folded and hung up and put away. A huge pile. There was no way I was going to be able to finish before she got home. And the verbal punishment for not “holding up my end of the bargain” was always more than I needed. Yelling. Intensity. Too much. Grounded. No phone calls. No friends. For the slightest infraction, it seemed. I swear I was always grounded. I didn’t want that. I didn’t want to feel what it feels like to displease her. So I stashed some of her clothes under her bed, thinking I would finish the next day and she would never know. She knew. She yelled and raged at me. I went to my room. And she said she wasn’t taking me to Europe anymore.

With two weeks left before the trip, she cancelled my flight. She invited her friend, Debbie. And she went on the trip of her lifetime. I stayed with my friend Meesh. Michelle. Meishelle. Anyway you spell it, we were both going to CKM HISP together while most of our Sutter Middle classmates were going to Sac High. And she lived in Natomas, too.

They had a nice two-story house in the new development not too far from the condo. They had a living room that we were not allowed to walk in because her mom liked to see the lines from the vacuum cleaner. We could walk to my house to use the pool if we wanted or if I needed clothes or something. My mom had a friend that was “house-sitting” for some reason. We didn’t have pets then, so IDK why.

One day, Meesh and I walked to the condo and used my key to get in. No one was there, but it looked real lived in and in my mom’s room there was a mirror on the night stand with lines of white powder, all in a row. Razor blade laying next to them. Me and Meesh got out of there before my mom’s friend came home. I was mortified. Good thing I can’t remember the friend’s name. All I remember was big hair.

When my mom got home she couldn’t wait to get her film developed and show me what a great time they had. On my trip. She even paid for her friend to go with her. I won’t forget that feeling. Let’s get excited, Annie. It’s going to be so fun and you are such a lucky kid. Let’s go shopping. Let’s make all the plans. Oops, you fucked up, now you can’t go. But I will have so much more fun without you anyway. See, look how much fun it was?

That wasn’t the last time she made promises she didn’t keep.

Now that I’m writing about MY LIFE, she’s triggered. Understandably, really. For years, I have wanted to write. I thought maybe a book, but it felt too big. Too daunting. Plus, I thought I couldn’t publish anything until after they were all dead, because it is not my intention to hurt anyone or expose or embarrass. My intention is to get it out, let it go, give it to the wind, lighten my load. And if someone thinks my writing is compelling and I can make some money off of my own personal therapy and the story of MY LIFE, I got bills to pay. Everyone else that would care is dead now. Except her.

So she’s been emailing me. She corrected a few of my inaccuracies. So I changed a few details. But I did not start this blog so that I could reconnect with her. My door is still closed and I hope she can respect that and stop emailing me. The problem is that every time I engage with her, I have a panic attack. We are like oil and water. Fire and ice. She’s the fire. She has a razor sharp tongue and says things I would never say to my children, when she is triggered. She sees literally everything differently than I do. When I was a kid, I had no choice. I had to accept all of it. Be the punching bag…or the mirror. I had to take it. And deal with it. Or shut down. Go inside. Hard crunchy shell. Like an M&M.

But I don’t have to anymore. My most recent therapist told me I have PTSD and that it is ok to protect myself from more harm. To delete and block. To go no contact. In fact, she didn’t just say it was ok, she said it was in my best interest for my own mental health to close the door.

Guess what, I found I don’t need Ativan if I keep that door shut. Peace replaced turmoil. Unless I’m triggered. And closing that door does not mean I don’t love her. It doesn’t mean that everything in our lives was bad. There was a lot of good. She taught me how to love! And she taught me survival. I always knew she loved me. She taught me how to ski when I was five, by holding me up between her legs. Make a pizza. No poles. We did fun things. We went waterskiing in her friends’ boats. We went rafting on the river. I was usually the only kid. Or the oldest kid so I could babysit while they partied. I loved babysitting. I always loved little kids. I loved to be down on the floor playing with them and making art projects. Reading them goodnight stories. Don’t let the bed bugs bite. Angels on your pillow.

I remember the hot, burning sand on my feet when we walked from the parking lot to Paradise Beach. I used to swim back and forth across the river, against the current, no life vest. Literally back and forth, one shore to the next. We didn’t know it was unsafe, then. I was a strong swimmer. Still am. Still swimming against the current. Diving into a tempest in a teacup, with an anchor tied around my ankles. Sink or swim.

I don’t know if I will ever be ok enough to open the door. I’m sure it doesn’t seem fair to her, and I understand. I’m hoping she forgives me for being broken and and sees the strength within me. That she sees that all of the harsh lessons led me to this life of abundance I have created. And that although my walls are too high to scale, I know how to build them, I know how to take care of me, and I broke the cycle and created stability for her grandchildren. I gave them what neither of us had. They have a foundation of stone to jump off. They know they are loved. And I taught them both how to ski. No poles.

And so, I write.

For me. With the door closed.


Tattoo made by Timpac.

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Tits Up

OMG. My tits are going viral! In the middle of the night the Daily Mail in the UK published a story about my breast reduction and now all these other news outlets have picked it up, mostly in the UK at this point. Some in the EU and US, even AU. My favorite so far honestly, is Scotland! I am finally a real Outlander! 😹 Google search “Annie Anderson breast reduction” and/or “Annie Anderson boob cast” and you will see! It’s crazy, y’all! Just from one 15 second Tiktok video I made!

After that video got 3 Million Views in a matter of days, I was contacted by a press agency. They wanted to write a story about my breast reduction. We worked out a deal and they sent me interview questions. I checked them out to make sure they were legit by contacting all the journalists I know and scoped out other content creators that they represent, so I knew what I was getting into. I knew it was hopefully going to hit The Daily Mail, The Sun, other tabloids and who knows where else! I knew they would try and make it sound crazy and fun and interesting and dramatic. I answered their questions and gave them some photos (I don’t remember giving them the damn parrot photo and regret it if I did, l will tell you the story behind that damn parrot some other time, lol) and then I didn’t hear anything for a week or so. The reporter emailed asking for more photos from 2012 when I first started to consider plastic surgery and from when I was younger. So I grabbed some of the photos that were not buried deep (like my memories) and sent them over. He said they would try and pitch the article the next day and he would let me know if anyone picked it up. Two nights went by, no email. When I was on my break at work I decided to google “Annie Anderson Breast Reduction Cast” and instantly the top three links were photos of me and stories! They had literally dropped a few hours before! So I knew before the reporter contacted me, lol.

The top hit was the article in The Daily Mail-UK. I opened the page and my jaw dropped and my hands and legs started trembling and my co-workers thought I was losing my mind…which incidentally might not be a unique occurrence, I know.

As the night went on , more and more websites were posting their version of the story. All very similar, but also different takes and interpretations of my interview answers. I did not write the article. And I know it’s a little outrageous, and I know it’s not “news” and I know there are plenty of women with boobs bigger than mine and I know this is the most I have laughed in 2 and a half years. There is so much beauty in that. I am finally at the place in a woman’s life that we learn to love ourselves as we are (yes, I know I needed surgery to get there) but I finally don’t give one flying fuck what some anonymous hater on the other side of the globe thinks of my decisions or of my body. You cannot hurt me by saying I’m fat anymore. I carried the pain of being called fat and I remember every single circumstance and face of the person that said it to me. Of their moms that heard them and either pretended not to or then yelled at them or punished them because they threw stones at me before I was wearing my armor. Of the guy that called me a “FAT CUNT” when I accidentally cut him off on the road. Well, I’m suited up now, Bitches! I am me. Your insults and idiocy mean nothing to me. And PS for the people bashing my tattoos in the comments, lol: I fucking LOVE my mid-life crisis aka party arm. My tattoos are badges of fucking honor. They are better than therapy to me. And I have plans for more.

So sit back and enjoy the ride…

You are lucky to know me as I am lucky to know you. Be kind. It’s not hard.

Or STFU. La, La, La, La, La…I can’t hear you.

And that, my friends, is the most powerful position a woman can be in. Wonder Woman. Gold-plated wrist guards to deflect all of your bullshit. And a gold lasso to pull myself out and away if I choose to go.

Here’s my angle. I remember being home alone, a lot. Standing in the kitchen and eating for so many reasons, most often not hunger. My mom always provided a roof over my head and food to eat somehow, someway.

When I was a child, I was usually the chubby kid. I have solid memories of my mom telling me to “suck it in” intermixed with eating my fries and at least half of hers. I remember nights where we had only an artichoke with mayo for dinner. I remember canned green beans and generic Mac and Cheese from the yellow or white box with black writing and nonfat milk with Crystal Light whipped with a hand mixer until it was fluffy cuz it was a low cal dessert and no, we never drink juice, empty calories. I remember crying in the grocery checkout because my stomach hurt so badly because I hadn’t eaten all day or I hadn’t eaten enough and the checker was giving my mom a hard time about the Food Stamps and we couldn’t get home fast enough to eat the liver in the bloody white tub and the ketchup my mom bought with the government’s money. So much ketchup. Drown it. Don’t even chew it. Choke it down. Do they even sell liver at the grocery store anymore? Let’s fucking hope not.

I do stand by an artichoke as a solid dinner option, usually paired with some kind of meat, BTW. Chicken breast or steak preferred. And I’m not gonna lie, I like me some A-1. And I add balsamic to the mayo cuz now I’m fancy.



1. the state or condition of having little or no money, goods, or means of support; condition of being poor.

2. deficiency of necessary or desirable ingredients, qualities, etc.: poverty of the soil.

3. scantiness; insufficiency.

That’s how you define poverty. I’m pretty sure if you qualify for Food Stamps in the state of California that you are living at poverty level.

I grew up in poverty.

And my mom worked hard and pulled us right out of that shit. The cycle broken. I’m broke, but I’m not poor. I worked hard and I pulled myself up a-whole-nother notch. I’m still working hard. At life.

So when the news agent asked if I was interested in allowing them to write a story about my breast reduction and basically represent me and my story to pitch to the world with the very slight possibility of making some money if it got picked up, I was all in. I embarrass myself for free every single day. I like to hand wash my laundry and hang it out to dry and I don’t give a damn who sees my underwear anymore.

Get it?

It’s my underwear. I can show it if I want to.

You don’t have to click or follow, but I do appreciate it when you do. You don’t have to like what I have to say, but I also appreciate that when you do. When you get me. You don’t have to believe every tabloid headline, and I’d appreciate it if you don’t. Remember, I didn’t write the story, I just answered questions about my story.

Don’t get it twisted.

So let’s have fun and see where this goes. If we ain’t laughin’, we cryin’ and it’s time for us big mamas to live our best life in whatever way we can.

It’s time to love the life we are living.

And it’s time to shine.

Thanks, Sam, for finding me. Right after I found my damn self. 🖤

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Always On My Mind

The last time I spent any real time with my dad was when I was 12. It was then that I realized that the only time I saw my dad was if I called him or his girlfriend to ask if I could come visit. So I tested the theory. I waited for him to call me and tell me he missed me and could he come pick me up. Turns out, I waited forever.

At my Aunt Luanne’s wedding, my dad asked the DJ to play Willie Nelson’s Always On My Mind and then he asked me to dance. He was a crier. Like me. He cried while he held me close on the dance floor.

“Maybe I didn’t love you
Quite as often as I could have
And maybe I didn’t treat you
Quite as good as I should have

… If I made you feel second best
Girl I’m sorry I was blind
You were always on my mind
You were always on my mind

… And maybe I didn’t hold you
All those lonely, lonely times
I guess I never told you
I am so happy that you’re mine

… Little things I should have said and done
I just never took the time
You were always on my mind
You were always on my mind

… Tell me
Tell me that your sweet love hasn’t died
And gi-ve me
Give me one more chance to keep you satisfied
I’ll keep you satisfied

… Little things I should have said and done
I just never took the time
You were always on my mind (you were always on my mind)
You were always on my mind
You were always on my mind (you were always on my mind)
You were always on my mind”

I hadn’t seen him or heard from him in at least six months by then. I was pissed. Cuz I was hurt. I was embarrassed, for so many reasons. Everyone there knew the life my dad was living. They knew he was not a good father to me. I think they were angry, too. Embarrassed. Ashamed. Abandoned.

I remember he was always smiling when he saw me. He use to whistle through his front teeth. I got to ride on the back of his motorcycle, wind in my hair. I sat on his lap and drove his truck while he pushed the pedals cuz I couldn’t reach. That scared me. It didn’t scare him at all. He took me fishing and he took me to visit my Great Grandmother. She always had Spanish cookies baking and $10 bills. She knitted me slippers and a blanket. She taught me how to crochet and we cracked walnuts while watching a Telenovela. She made me a toilet paper cover for the bathroom and curly ringletly ties for my hair. She owned the whole damn block of houses. Like all of them. They used to have a ranch, before I was born. I never met Joaquin, my great grandfather. He and Josefa immigrated from Spain. Mi familia es de Valencia, Espana. I’m proud of that. Pero, mi espanol es muy malo.

He was never out of control when I was with him. He would argue with the people around him if they had too much to drink or were talking about something they shouldn’t in front of me. He always seemed to have cash in his pocket. Let’s go to Scandia, daddy. Let’s drive the cars, daddy. Let’s pretend it’s all good, daddy.

I’ll pretend no one told me about the time you were in jail and someone gave you an apple with razor blades hidden in it and you took a bite. Oh and the time you were on so many substances that someone kicked your ass and slammed your skull into the pavement and you were permanently fucked up after that. Traumatic Brain Injury. And let’s pretend I didn’t see the scales or the baggies or the people coming and going, always a party. Let’s pretend the days at the duck pond were enough. Pushing me on the swings was enough. And your tears were enough.

They weren’t.

I grew up without really knowing my dad. I couldn’t tell you his favorite color or his favorite food. I can’t remember if his old green truck was a Chevy or a Ford. I can’t remember or I never knew. I’m not angry anymore. Now, I’m just sad. And now I see those old trucks everywhere I go.

I wish I had been able to tell him that I can see things from a different perspective, now. I can see how hard it must have been to try and keep up with a rolling stone. I’m sure it was hard enough to keep track of new phone numbers and where are they now? It was hard enough, I know. I struggled, too. But god damn it, why didn’t you stand up and say no! She needs some stability! She needs to know I love her! She needs to feel my arms around her when she’s sad or when she’s happy, when she does something good or fails. Someone to hold her up when she can no longer do it herself.

I would have liked to tell you I forgive you and I still love you and I’m so sad I didn’t know you. I’m sad you never took my kids fishing. I’m sad you never cooked them dinner. I would tell you that no one, and I mean no one, deserves to die alone without someone they love to hold their hand as they take their last breath and Covid can fuck right off.

I wish I had known. I wish someone would have told me. I would have been there, somehow, someway. I guess I will see you next lifetime, daddy. We got work to do.

So, I just keep fucking going.

And now I’m writing about it. It’s like a faucet. Drip, drip.

My dad died on 2/4/20. I got this one on Valentine’s Day, made by Bri.

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