adding ginger to your sass

GingerSass - adding ginger to your sass

One Year

Last year at this time, a lot of things happened.

Exactly one year ago today, I interviewed for an eleventh grade teaching position before I flew out to Chicago for BlogHer13. I received a phone call a few hours after my interview saying I had gotten the position.


This was a look of FEAR before I was a late-night model.

I then flew to Chicago for my second BlogHer experience, where I conquered my stage fright and was a model in a fashion show. It was a terrifyingly amazing experience, and I’m proud to say I rocked the check out of my Jersey girl look. I also felt like a rock star when some big-time bloggers I admire complimented me afterwards.


I’m deeply saddened that I’m not at BlogHer in San Jose this year, and that I most likely won’t be attending next year, unless it’s back in NYC, as I’ll be in wedding crunch mode. BlogHer is a conference filled with people I wouldn’t normally interact with, lots of estrogen, and, above all, a support system like you wouldn’t believe. I’ve never really found a niche as a blogger, and there really isn’t a specific place for an awkward, weird Jersey girl lesbian teacher blogger at a blogging conference, but there are a lot of places to branch out and connect with others, others that wouldn’t necessarily have ended up in my circle of friends otherwise.

For these connections, I’ll always be grateful to BlogHer. Have fun, my friends.

Are you going to have kids?

I’m back to babysitting/ nannying/ child-care-taking or whatever else you want to call it this summer. It’s the same wonderful kids I sat for last summer.

Today the kids asked me what my summer plans had been before I started watching them again, and I told them that I really had just planned on devoting this summer to planning our wedding. At this point they noticed my ring and got super excited. They then decided it was necessary to drill me on everything they could possibly ask me about my life, my fiancée, our wedding, and anything else that connected the two of us.

Then, they asked the one question I wasn’t prepared for, although I have been asked it dozens of times since I first became engaged:

Are you going to have kids?

Did You Know

I haven’t been asked this since I started dealing with some brand spankin’ new health issues this summer, and the question kind of gutted me. I’ve always wanted kids, but as recently as early Spring, before I started dealing with unexpected craziness, I’ve had this weird worry I haven’t been able to shake that I won’t be able to have kids. My latest doctor’s visit brought up the phrase “Poly Cystic Ovary Syndrome,” which Google will immediately tell you is thought to be one of the leading causes of female infertility. Being asked if I’m going to have kids out loud for the first time since kids didn’t seem like an easy possibility was a mind-blowing experience, filled with irrational emotions, shaking, and potential tears.

So, today, after initially freezing for what felt like an eternity, with my mind racing all over, I responded as honestly as I could:

Maybe. I don’t know.

All I can say is thank goodness for sitting for a lesbian couple. The 12 year old immediately said, “Oooh! You could adopt babies and kids from all over!!!” The 9 year old, not to be outdone by the older sibling, responded, “ORRRR you could get a sperm donor! We’re from a sperm donor! We don’t know our sperm donor, but that’s how we got here!!” The kids then excitedly discussed how I could get a 7 foot tall giant as a sperm donor so my hypothetical babies could be basketball stars.

As odd as it was to have my “child options” reiterated to me by children, it was also oddly comforting. I don’t know what the future holds, or how I’ll get to mom-status, but I do know that I’ll get there one day, either through adoption or even potentially a 7 foot giant sperm donor. For now, I just need to adapt and get through this, one “Are you going to have kids?” at a time.

Why the GetYourBellyOut campaign freaks me out

I have Ulcerative Colitis. I was diagnosed in January 2009 after a very unpleasant first semester of college, something I mistakenly attributed to dining hall food. By the time my colonoscopy rolled around in the last few weeks of Winter Break, I was visibly sick. I was paler than I ever knew my normally ghastly self could be, I was anemic, and I felt like I had no control over my body. (Fun fact: 3 days after my diagnosis was the first time I’d felt like myself in ages and I went out and got an impromptu cartillage piercing to reclaim myself, the most “rebellious” thing I’d ever done.) I’m very fortunate that I’ve found a medication that has helped me keep control over my body for the past 5 and a half years. My gastro and I call it my “miracle drug,” and I thank my lucky stars every day that the miracle hasn’t stopped working.

Last month, a young woman’s photo of herself in a bikini went viral. This wouldn’t normally be news, as it’s the summer and bikini pics are all the rage, but Bethany Townsend has Crohn’s Disease, as well as a colostomy bag. Bethany contributed to a growing revolution, as well as a growing campaign called #GetYourBellyOut. The campaign even gained notoriety on the popular website Buzzfeed.

As someone who has Ulcerative Colitis, the thought of a colostomy bag freaks me out. While most of the comments on the internet from people with Crohn’s and Ulcerative Colitis have been positive and full of gratitude, seeing Bethany’s picture, as well as trending topic of my worst nightmare, gave me the heebie jeevies. A colostomy bag is my worst nightmare. Seeing colostomy bag after colostomy bag in the news and appearing in my newsfeed is what I imagine it’s like for someone with arachnophobia around Halloween, or Ron Weasley in general. It’s just unnerving to see your worst nightmare flaunted in front of you.

photo courtesy of Warner Bros.

photo courtesy of Warner Bros.

So, no, I will not be getting my (luckily colostomy free) belly out. I’ll be hiding in the corner and being thankful that my miracle drug is still a miracle.