This Storm

Storms come into all of our lives. Sometimes, like radar, we see them ominously approaching. Other times they can appear as quickly as the sudden summer shower that causes us to haphazardly throw all our crap in the beach bag and scurry for the hotel. When these storms come, for me, it’s difficult to know if and when I should share my grief with others. If I make known the details of my hardship too soon, I feel that people will interpret it as me wanting pity or attention. If I don’t share it at all, I somehow feel cheated–not from people’s pity–but from the missed prayers and encouragement that I could have received. And I truly believe that prayer and encouragement make the most powerful umbrella for weathering storms. I just decided moments earlier to publically disclose my latest storm- while I’m in the very midst of the downpour- … Continue reading

Dear Young Couple

Dear Young Couple, I don’t personally know you, but I spent 45 minutes observing you last week. Wait. I’m not some stalking psycho. Before you reach for a can of pepper spray or notify the authorities, please allow me to explain. You were standing in line at a tourist attraction and my family was behind you. Do you remember those beautiful blue-eyed children who whined about the wait and took turns begging to climb onto that poor man’s shoulders while his wife said the words, “don’t” and “stop” 375 times? Yes, that was us. I first noticed your high heels, young lady. As I admired them, I was reminded of the days when I could tour a museum or wait in a line for hours in stylish pumps. “That seems like so long ago”, I thought, as I glanced down at my New Balance tennis shoes secretly lined with Dr. … Continue reading

Ten Kids’ TV Shows That Really Work My Nerves

When my daughter was small, I knew the words to every “Yo Gabba Gabba” episode, verbatim, which I incoherently recited at random and, in turn, caused friends and loved ones to believe I was on hallucinogenic drugs. When my son was born, I swore that I wouldn’t let him watch annoying television that managed to take a toll on my mental health, but I’ve failed horribly. He has many favorite television shows, but these ten really work my nerves: 1. Transformers: Prime- I’m convinced that each story line in this new twist on an old classic was taken from the Book of Revelation. It’s dark, it’s apocalyptic and it leaves me with so many questions. *What do the words coming out of Optimus Prime’s metal mouth mean? *Autobots and the Decepticons look exactly alike, so how do I know who to root for? *Is Cybertron the Transformer’s version of Best Buy? *Is … Continue reading

That’s Enough, SAHM’s

Oh, the poor, exhausted stay-at-home mother: her yoga pants constantly covered in little people’s various body fluids and her dreams of backpacking across Europe flushed down the toilet with her cell phone (courtesy of her toddler). The sad, resentful woman with a sink full of dirty dishes, a hamper full of grass-stained clothes, unhelpful husband, ornery children and burned chicken. Before you rip the electric sliding doors from your minivans and charge at me with sharp kitchen utensils because of that first controversial paragraph, please know that I, too, am a stay-at-home mom (SAHM), raised by a SAHM, and constantly surrounded by friends and family who are also SAHMs, so I have some authority on this subject. I know what it’s like to have a horrible day. I know what it’s like to run a fever of 103, with the intense desire to sleep, and still have to burp people … Continue reading

Whoa! Susannah’s Moving Pictures

Hey guys and gals (Mostly gals. Guys tend not to put up with my nonsense for long). I’ve heard the cry from the masses. “Do more videos, Susannah. We really want to hear your whiny, Southern drawl. It’s mesmerizing.” And I’ve fulfilled your requests with TWO new You Tube videos. In the first video, I felt the overwhelming desire to tell the story of some redneck shenanigans that I witnessed in my local general hospital. Warning: Mispronounced procedures and Marvin the Martian pajama pants play a pivotal role. In the second video, my husband went out of town on business, my mother kept my children, and I was left home alone. What better way to spend the evening than with my best friend, who was also husband and kid-free for the night? We had a grand old time chatting, watching Seth Rogan flicks and then deciding to share makeup tips with … Continue reading

Cancelling My Guilt Trip

I remember swiping a grape from my hometown grocery store’s produce department when I was about 8 or 9. Before the dirty purple sphere made it down my throat, I knew I was destined to burn in hell for stealing. The guilt was so unbearable that I could never again go grocery shopping with my mother without remembering my sin. That was the first and last time I ate fruit that couldn’t be validated with a receipt. I felt guilty for big things like lying to my mother and coming home after curfew. And little things like shoving stuff under my bed instead of putting it in its proper place. I didn’t eventually outgrow the guilt. No, no, no. It followed me right into adulthood, like a rabid mouth-foaming monkey on my back. My hangovers have always consisted of excessive dry mouth, nausea and a heaping side of guilt. Retail therapy is great until the shame sets … Continue reading

The Most Cathartic Post Ever…Really

I’ve written often about my father here. I’ve written about his humor, his favorite jokes, his death and the hole that it left in my heart. I’ve written about my love for him, and the longing. But I’ve never written about the tough stuff – the demons he battled and the disease he bore. Writing my first post for YourTango really made me dig deep within and realize truths for the first time in 32 years. I hope you’ll click here to discover those truths with me.  … Continue reading

Cheer Up or Dry Up: Hooked on a Feeling

We all know the song, “Hooked on a Feeling”  that begins with a bunch of “ooga” noises and nonsense. Personally, I always preferred BJ Thomas’ version of the song, but I’m a weirdo like that. I was reminded of this song after a recent argument with my husband. Years ago before vows were exchanged and children were born, we were hooked on a feeling. We were consumed by the “honeymoon phase” of our relationship. We had arguments, yes, but we would run back into each other’s arms within a few minutes, giddy and grinning with butterflies fluttering in our bellies and pheromones running rampant. We were “in love”. Over time, like any other relationship, those butterflies flew the coop and the pheromones dialed back a few hundred decibels. But guess what? We are still in love. We aren’t 21 anymore. We aren’t a party of two anymore. We have children, responsibilities, bills to pay … Continue reading

An Open Letter to the Mysterious Stranger Who Loaded the Dishwasher

Dear Mysterious Stranger, When I arrived home from church last night, I was shocked to see that the sink wasn’t cluttered with plates crusted in ketchup or cups stained with sour organic chocolate milk. I began to wonder where the dishes that I had left in the sink only hours before had vanished. Had they been stolen? Had they grown bacteria legs or propped themselves upon forks and run away?  I looked around the kitchen and then cautiously and skeptically opened the dishwasher. Voila! I was so pleasantly surprised to see the dishes there, although plates were haphazardly stacked where the cups should go and Tupperware was on the bottom rack where it would surely melt into the shape of a puzzle piece. But I didn’t complain. Although you didn’t actually wash the crusted ketchup from the plates or rinse the soured hormone-free delicacy from the cups before loading them, you did however, wash most of the larger clumps … Continue reading

Summer of 99: Mama Said Knock You Out

On Friday, August 13, 1999, I was standing beside a swimming pool at a party that was equivalent to awesome parties that you’d see in those nineties flicks starring Jennifer Love Hewitt or Sarah Michelle Geller or Rachael Leigh Cook or one of those other actresses with three names who are now old married mothers with SUVs and coupon binders, just like Susannah Brown Lewis. I was talking with my friends when I noticed that my first love’s present girlfriend, who was also his past girlfriend (and his future wife) had arrived at the party. That was confusing, wasn’t it? Re-read it again if you must and try to stay with me here. Her presence made me nervous because her present boyfriend, who was also her past boyfriend (and her future husband) had been stringing me along on the side for months. And, like the idiot 17-year-old that I was, I believed that one day he would … Continue reading