Angst about anxiety

I hear about a documentary and I think “damn, that sounds so interesting!  I’d love to see that.”  But, I almost never do.  I barely get to the movies unless I’m escorting my kids to an animated film…then I prefer to go to a theater that has wine.  It relaxes me when I see animals talking.

But, when I was invited to watch a documentary about teens and anxiety I did watch it.  Not on a “screener”  ( which I NEVER get unlike everyone else I know in Los Angeles), not streaming, but got in my car and drove.  Drove to Westwood no less.  I hate driving to Westwood.  Not as much as I hate driving to Glendale, but much more than driving Downtown.

Why did I go? I now have a tween.  I can see that middle school seems more challenging than elementary school.  Not academically, but socially, the vibe, the lack of play.  Schools seem to think that at 12 no one wants unstructured outdoor time.  Join a sports team!  (more anxiety.)   My husband came with me.  He has already had 3 other children go through teen years and he seemed to have less insight into the process than I have.

The movie is called “Angst“.  It’s a lot of people talking about their anxiety, so I did feel a bit anxious watching it, but the good news ( and for short attention span Brogdon this is very good) it clocks in just under an hour.  There are different teens describing what they went through, some of what made them better.  Various therapist talking about treating teens with anxiety.  Now, there were moments watching were I thought, “Gee shut up you nice looking, largely white kids who live in America and are scared to go to school.  You are not in Cambodia scared your back yard has unexploded land mines.”   But, then I am not worried about land mines either and my children’s worries are probably more like the kids in this film.  Urban, metro, educated families. Makes sense they would get anxious.. they have a mom who stresses about driving to Westwood  ( also cause it’s all crap chain restaurants, except Falafel King, thank God that is still there).

Two things really jumped out at me as take aways for parents:  1) if your kid has chronic tummy aches it is probably anxiety.  Which doesn’t mean “tough it out”, but address the underlying issue.  2) one therapist said it would help young people to process feelings if their parents did openly as well.  Example a parent might share with their youngin:  “I had a disagreement with my friend at work.  I didn’t know why she was mad at me and I ignored it, but it started to bother me, so I asked her to get a coffee with me and we worked it out.”  Remember being a teen in your darkened bedroom with headphones on listening to Pete Townsend’s solo works and thinking ” I am the ONLY ONE in the world who feels like I do”  ( on hi low carpeting as I recall).

When Mark told some friend’s of ours about it the next day he summed it up well, “It scared the shit out of me.”

I don’t want to be a spoiler, but near the end of the film a FAMOUS person surprises one of the kids and speaks frankly about their struggles with anxiety and depression  (which kinda sorta go together a lot).  It’s a real high point and I’m sure the producers high fived when they booked THIS PERSON. “woo- hoo, we have our ending”

So, check out the film.  The film makers have a comprehensive website with resources.  Also, if you want the film to be shown at your school or youth organization they will set that up for free.  They will help facilitate talking points, etc.

I’ve started to write, stopped, started.. head been whacked since election.  Also, so much to say!!  Serious stuff too.

But, Don’s appointment to Secretary of Energy made me think of something funny.  We remember Rich Perry’s famous “oops” moment when in a primary debate in ’12 he forgot one of the 3 departments he would dismantle if he became president.  It was wildly made fun of and he was soon out of the race.  Oh how have things changed in 4 years!  Trump did 100 things more outrageous and said dumber things in his debate, but didn’t matter.  Now, he is appointing Perry to one of the departments he wanted to dismantle.

Well, back then I included Perry’s debate gaffe as one of my “If a mom talked like….”  So, I’m posting again.  So funny, one of the points I was making back then with this series is that women are held to a different standard than men.  Ha, ha, so true ( laughing through my tears)

Mom hair cut

Oh, yes, I have been tempted over the years to hack off my hair. Have flirted with bangs.. could for hiding forehead wrinkles.

mom bangs

mom bangs

I’ve done shoulder length, but I still have long hair. even though it can be more work.

I cant' do my hair today... I .. can.. not

I cant’ do my hair today… I .. can.. not

Is it an age thing when you make the change?  Or is it motherhood?  Funny vide on the topic.. not mine, but SNL.  I saw myself a LOT in this.. See if you can relate.

Me with “The Cut”…almost

almost "The cut" with newborn Rex

almost “The cut” with newborn Rex

Click to see HERE

normal night

Most of life is pretty prosaic.  What isn’t I’m not a liberty to blog about.  So, here is a snapshot of a typical ho hum evening at my house.  For those keeping track:  I like bone dry white wine, not oaky, buttery “cougar juice”.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mh6je3nPNZE

When your child makes you realize you are as dumb as dirt

He, he, this cracks me up.. I’m humbled all the time being a mom, but never more then when my kids ask me questions that I cannot answer.  Have you been there?  I’m sure you have.  Vivien is now a 5th grader, but I know I’m not smarter than a 5th grader, I was falling behind years ago.  Combined with my spotty, progressive ’70’s education it’s a wonder I’m walking upright.

getting use to back to school

The last couple of days I’ve been running into parents from our school and the chatter is something like this:

“Did you have a good summer?”

“Yes, but I am so ready for them to go back!!”

I had just started to sort of feel like that as I grabbed Rex by the top of his hair so he wouldn’t hit me or Vivien.  But, now that they ARE BACK in school I have to get use to it.

I came home and spent hours trying to get a relative enrolled in Medicare part D.  Woo-hoo.  Just like having an affair with a yoga instructor.

Finding my back to school life reminded me of a video I once did… ( cue back in time music)

Best of….

So, I’m on a family trip right now. Thor is watching my house and I’m going to try to upload remotely, but not sure if it will work.  So, here is a playlist of some of my favorite coolmom videos.

Enjoy!!

so flipping tired again

tired mom

I’m so flipping tired

I was driving home after dropping off Viv at camp and thought, what is this feeling I have?  oh, yes, joy, calm, I’m rested!!  It’s been years, but I was reminded of MUCH MORE rested I am with a 6 and 9 year old when we recently stayed at my friend who has a 7 month old and a 2 year old.

the old days

the old days. Brand New Rex..wonder what happened to that blanket?

I was so happy to snuggle with the big, fat baby thighs and I felt AWESOME that I could help my friend and get her baby boy to sleep  3 times!  I still got it!!.  I told my kids, “smell that neck, nothing like it!”.  But, man o man.  That juggle of two small kids and her husband was working.. woof.  No wonder I just started thinking clearly.  So, I’m posting this video because though I do get more sleep now, I know there are those out there that are still in the trenches.