Words I hate

By Mir
February 28, 2012

I hate the word “miasma,” which is meant to describe something unpleasant, so I guess it’s just doing its job. Still. Hate it.

I also hate the word “torsion,” which comes from having once had an ovarian torsion. (Pro tip: That really hurts.)

I have issues with the word “pretty,” even though I use it all the time. I just don’t think a single word that sounds so darn perky should be so loaded. And it is, in our society. I wrote about that today for Off Our Chests, as I’m seeing the legacy of female teenage inability to see clearly unfold in front of me.

But mostly, I hate the word “relapse.” Relapse can just go screw itself sideways, thanks. [Related: Chickie is back in the hospital. I am beating myself up for letting her do all she did this weekend… maybe the trip really was too much for her, maybe she was coming down with something and didn’t say anything because she wanted to go. Who knows. Moot, now, I guess.]


  1. Alison C

    Praying for you all. Love to Chickie

  2. el-e-e

    No, no, no. Do not beat yourself up. You are doing just right for her, this is not your fault. Nor hers. :( I hope she gets back home quickly this time. So sorry to hear.

  3. Julie

    Don’t beat yourself up. She’ll have the memories of the weekend to cheer her up in the hospital;) Kiss her and take care of yourself! This advice from the mom of a kid who has spent LOTS of time in the hospital.

    Hope she’s better soon.

  4. Randi

    Oh no! I know she’ll get better soon, though, and Julie’s right – she’ll have those victories to cheer her on!

  5. Sherri

    Mir, I”m sorry to hear Chickie is back in the hospital. You are in my thoughts.

  6. Frank

    Without any more detail, it seems you did right to let her have the weekend she did (she needed it), and no blame to be assigned for anything more. Thinkin about you

  7. Patricia

    I’m am so sorry that she’s back in the hospital — but I PROMISE you (and back it up completely with my vast medical degrees and experience — ignore the fact I don’t have either) that you are not to blame. Maybe she overdid it a little this weekend — but trust me, she’s reliving that joy over and over during the healing process. In a way, she may have needed this little setback to have that utter joy to get her to the next level of wellness.

    On another thought, I know someone who dislikes the word “moist” to the point that she’s physically uncomfortable. Is it wrong that I take great joy in working the word “moist” into nearly every conversation? Yup, probably totally wrong — but oh, so funny.

  8. Jen H.

    So sorry. Hugs all around!

  9. The Other Laura

    All of you are in my thoughts and prayers.

  10. MomQueenBee

    You would have never forgiven yourself if she had missed the weekend. You can (and should) forgive yourself for the relapse.

  11. amy

    Aww man. That sucks. I’m so sorry she’s relapsed. Don’t blame yourself, guilt won’t help you in any way. I really hope she gets better soon. Hugs to all of you.

  12. aly

    ugh– you are in our thoughts. but yes to the commenter who said the memories and victories from this past weekend were extremely important to chickadee (and to you!). it will shake out. IT HAS TO. :)

  13. Mary

    Sorry to hear this, but don’t beat yourself up! Unless, of course, you have a crystal ball that predicts such setbacks, in which case… you need to share! She’ll get the rest she needs where she is and be back with you all soon, I’m sure.

  14. Rachel

    Crap. Thinking of you and your family.

  15. hollygee

    ((((Mir+Chickie+Monkey+Otto)))), Bless.

  16. Jenn C.

    Oh, that just sucks. I’m sorry to hear she’s relapsed. Try not to beat yourself up, you have NO way of knowing what caused her to relapse or whether the weekend’s activities made a whit of difference. And she loved all those moments of victory, and she needs those too.

  17. Mandy

    Ditto what hollygee (#15) said.

    Sending healing thoughts to GA.

  18. Arnebya

    I know it’s moot to even say don’t be too hard on yourself. As a mom, how can you not be? We question everything we do, everything we don’t do, everything we consider doing. I’m so sorry about Chickie, sorry that she’s having to deal with so very much. My heartfelt thoughts and prayers are with you and your family for her to get better soon.

  19. Genevieve

    I am so sorry — that is miserably rotten. BUT don’t second-guess yourself now — she needed this weekend, it was marvelous for her, so needed to boost her self-image and self-esteem and remind her that she is a smart, strong, hard worker who excels in so many ways.
    She might have relapsed even without this weekend, and you made the best decision you could based on the information you had. Just focus on her getting better now, and let yourself off the hook for what wasn’t your fault. And for what was very good for chickie.

    Keeping you all in my thoughts and prayers.

  20. RebeccaL

    Prayers and hugs to you, Chickie and your whole family! Why do we as moms expect to be able to see the future and the possible consequences of all our choices for our children? Please go easy on yourself!

  21. BethRD

    What everyone else said! We will be thinking of you and hoping for a quick bounce back to health.

  22. Katie K.

    Shoot. So sorry. Totally not your fault, so stop that blaming stuff. I will keep your family in my prayers.

  23. Lylah

    XO. Sending you strength and hope and reminding you that this is not your fault. (Also: her having a great weekend and achieving her goals is a very good thing.)

  24. Jen

    Oh Chickie. :( Hugs to all of you!

  25. Gennie

    So sorry to hear about Chickie. Let her know that we are all thinking of her and sending good healing thoughts. And sending supportive virtual hugs your way as well.

  26. Melissa

    Sorry to hear that and hope she is recovering soon!!

  27. kris

    Pfft. You are hardly worthy of the bad momma crown. And if you dislike pretty, how are you pretty, pretty Mir!?

  28. Hally

    Sending all the good virtual juju I can to the Otto, Mir, Chickie, Monkey, Licorice family. Hang in there guys, you’re stronger than this…I know it!

  29. deva

    Many hugs to chickie and to you, Mir. We’re all pulling for you and your family.

  30. Megan

    So so sorry – I wish it would help to say ‘it’s NOT your fault’ but I know how hard it is to reason with the mama guilt.

    Chickie had the weekend she desperately needed, that is a sure and certain fact.

  31. Leandra

    What everybody else said, plus a double dose of don’t beat yourself up. Just think of it as a minor set-back. But what an awesome memory she has to cherish now and what an ego boost because you did let her go.


  32. Liz

    Yes, Chickie had an awesome weekend and one that she’ll remember for, well, ever. Beating yourself up = no help, whatsoever. Get better soon, Chickie!!!

  33. amanda

    I’m so sorry, Mir. My thoughts and prayers are with you and the entire family, especially Chickie.

  34. Jamie

    Well that’s a crap sandwich! Hoping her hospital stay and recovery are a quick one. You did the right thing letting her be active and enjoy herself though. She could have ended up in the hospital again even if she’d stayed home and laid on the couch all weekend.

  35. Tenessa

    I can’t believe that the positivity she experienced last weekend is anything but good for her all around. Things happen and you can beat yourself up over it. Hug on Chickie, and tell her your internet fan club is rooting for her. <3

  36. Virginia L.

    I am so sorry to hear she is back in the Hospital. The great thing about being a Mom is the constant second guessing! If only you were perfect then she would be perfect, right :). I know you are doing your best and so is she. Just give it some more time! I will keep her and you in my prayers!

  37. Rebecca

    Chickie had a wonderfully affirming, positive weekend. If she’d stayed home, from even one thing, she may have still relapsed anyway. But she wouldn’t have had the memory of her incredible weekend to sustain her. She’ll be better soon. We’re all praying for her and I know God is listening.

    ((hugs)) to you all!!!!!!!!!!

  38. Crisanne

    Hugs, Mir. You are doing your best for her and that’s all you can ask of yourself.

  39. Jenne

    Ditto 7 (- the M.D.) 15, 19, 32 & 37. Sending love & hugs :)

  40. Fairly Odd Mother

    Oh, I am so sorry but please don’t beat yourself up about it. it sounds like it was a wonderful, memorable weekend and you are a great mom for letting her experience that. Hugs to you all.

  41. liv

    i can’t add anything to what the wise previous commenters have said — i’m sorry to hear chickadee’s back in the hospital, but stop beating yourself up. i’ll be praying for a speedy hospital release for chickadee.

  42. Crista

    Ack! Ovarion torsion! Let us never speak those words again! *shudder* ;) (Speaking from experience here, *if* you couldn’t tell)

    I hope Chickie is feeling better soon. I will be keeping all of you in my thoughts and prayers.

  43. Javamom

    You know what I think? When she was out of the hospital and wanted to live life, you helped her do this. Even though you feel badly now, and are second guessing if it was too much. We all have these self-doubts. Still, the child will remember her fantastic weekend and the things she DID do, and that is the important part.

    Hoping things will improve soon, and all the best to your daughter’s health.

  44. jwg

    Stop it right now! I don’t know what is wrong with Chickie but it sounds like you are in for the long haul and beating yourself up every time somethning goes wrong isn’t good for either of you. She had an unforgettable weekend and you gave her that gift. We all make choices as parents and if you limit those choices to only what is safe you are going to lose her trust in your ability to chooose what is best and she will miss out on learning how to make the choices when she is older. You are a fantastic parent and there are lots of us here to whip you into shape when you forget that.

  45. KGP

    Poor kid and poor you. Hoping that she comes home again soon.

  46. Alison

    hugs and healing all around. I’m glad she had her adventures and successes over the weekend!

  47. Heather

    So, so sorry Mir. Love and prayers coming your way. Try not to get your exercise kicking yourself and jumping to the conclusion that you should have known. No one could have known. At least she has the thrill of victory to remember long after all this crap has passed. And it WILL pass. Keeping the faith and sending the hugs for you.

  48. Melinda

    Sending healing thoughts for your girl and peace to her momma and worried family.

  49. RuthWells

    I’m so sorry to hear this, but I have ABSOLUTE FAITH that all will be well. Hang in there, and much love coming your way.

  50. Leah

    Praying for her!

  51. Amy

    You know that Chickie would have been majorly upset to miss this past weekend. Can you just imagine the angst if she hadn’t gone?!? You did what was best at the time and look at the memories that she was able to make. You are an awesome mom and always have been. I just hope some day when I have children that I will be half as awesome as you are!

    Also, much love to you and yours. You all are in my prayers!

  52. Jackie

    Oh Mir,

    I’m so sorry your sweet girl is back in the hospital. The Dr.’s are the one’s who gave ther the ok to get out and about. You shouldn’t be so hard on yourself. I understand it but still don’t think you should be. I will continue to pray for all of you.


  53. Raquel

    I am thinking of you and your family. Healing vibes to all. Sucks. :(

  54. Chuck

    Very sorry to hear the bad news about Chickadee – hope the stay is very brief and she’s back home soon. I agree, relapses suck.

  55. Little Bird

    Relapse is indeed a terrible word. I will keep you and yours in my thoughts (happy, healing thoughts!).

  56. Susan


  57. Jenn

    Relapse is an awful word and I’m very sorry it happened to Chickie. Just remember relapses also happen to girls who sit on the couch and stare at the ceiling. Hang in there! We’re all pulling for you.

  58. kris

    Don’t beat your self up – like everyone else has said, there is no way a weekend full of joy is a bad thing. Best wishes to Chickadee for a speedy recovery – the whole internetz is rooting for you!

  59. The Mommy Therapy

    On no! So sorry Mir.

    Everyone here makes excellent points though, there is no blame to place. I’ll be thinking about your sweet Chickadee and the whole family. Hopefully this is a quick stay and she is on the mend again soon.

  60. Heather

    Oh Mir, I’m so sorry Chickie’s not doing so well, again…there’s just no way you could have known this would happen, or even if all the activity had ANYTHING to do with her “relapse”. (That word, btw, made me say a few not-so-kosher words, too.) Chickie is strong and smart and awesome, and I am praying with you that she kicks this thing’s butt!!

  61. Jean

    So sorry, Mir. Hoping and praying for a quick recovery and release.

  62. Lara

    Mir, so sorry to hear that Chickie is back in the hospital. And as a mother to a child with a rare disease, believe me when I say I know this is easier said than done, but don’t beat yourself up. Chickie had an amazing weekend. You made the best choice at the time given your lack of a crystal ball ;). I hope she recovers and comes home quickly. Hugs to all.

  63. Lucinda

    You have to live your life. When you are really sick and then you feel better, you have to live even if it means getting sick again. I know because I have been living it for 15 years now. There isn’t just physical health to consider but emotional health as well. Chickie needed this past weekend and all the success that came with it. She will get better. This won’t last forever. Don’t beat yourself up for living life.

  64. Kim

    I’m sorry to hear that Chickie is back in. But “happy” goes a long way towards healing, so maybe this weekend actually will make it easier for her to bounce back. Lots of healing energy coming your way (no prayers out of respect for Chickie’s atheism). I hope things get better soon!

  65. Kathy

    I’m so so sorry to hear this. I can’t imagine how hard it must be to see your child sick nevermind in hospital. But you can’t by any stretch of the imagination feel bad about your weekend with her…it is so not your fault and I’m sure though physically it may have been a lot for her, mentally it more than made up for it. Hang in there.

  66. {sue}

    More prayers, Mir. For all of you.

  67. Sheila

    Know what word I like? Resilience. I like how it sounds and I like how it looks, and I like that it will apply in this situation. I’m sorry you’ve had a setback but I know you and Chickie are nothing if not resilient. Best wishes to you both.

  68. jen_alluisi

    Oh, Mir. So, so sorry – but Chickie will be all fine and good. She is an excellent, amazing kid, and having a great family around her to support her will help her even more. Prayers and happy thoughts that she’ll be home again oh-so-soon.

  69. All Adither

    Damn it! I’m sorry she’s back in the hospital.

  70. Grace

    I’m sorry, but I am still happy that Chickie was able to do so much so well this weekend. Please don’t beat yourself up. Praying for you all.

  71. Jeanie

    So very sorry to hear that. Praying for wellness for Chickie. She did have an awesome weekend.

  72. elz

    Don’t beat yourself up. You know that Chickie needed a good weekend like last weekend, even if it plum wore her out. She needs those little victories to know that everything will eventually be OK. Hugs & prayers, always.

  73. QueenMum

    Oh, I am so sorry to hear Chickie is back in the hospital. I am praying for her and your whole family during this time, it really stinks! Don’t beat yourself up. You made the best decision possible last weekend based on the information available at the time. Period. She had an awesome weekend, remember that and bask in it.

  74. KarenP

    Sorry to hear she is back in the hospital. Hope her stay is short and she is home soon. Glad she had a fun weekend. Don’t be hard on yourself.

  75. TC

    Boo relapse. Yay you. Stop the second guessing.

  76. Karen

    Being a parent is so very, very hard. You and your family are in my thoughts.

  77. liz

    Bleh, I’m so sorry she’s back in the hospital, but I am SO HAPPY for her and the rest of you that she did all that she accomplished over the weekend. I hope she’s better soon and that the rest of you are holding up okay. ((((hugs))))

  78. Jenny

    If you’ll please pardon the swearing: You are a kick-ass mom, and she is a kick-ass Chick, and I think there would’ve been a mutiny if you’d tried to keep her out of anything. I hope she feels better and gets home fast.

  79. Lise!"

    I’m sorry she’s back in the hospital. But let’s all chant together, “It’s not Mir’s fault!” Praying that she’ll be home again soon.

  80. Karen

    OH, no you don’t. SUCKS, the relapse. Your fault? Hell no. What a wonderful weekend, can you imagine having her stay home for ANY of that???… You had no idea. SO, onward. Hoping this is a blip on the radar, and she’ll be home again shortly.

  81. Pam

    Thoughts and prayers are going out to your family for Chickadee’s speedy recovery.

  82. Kailani

    Crap!! So sorry to hear she has had a setback. NOT your fault!
    Ice cream all around! This too shall pass.

  83. Ariel

    I’m sorry she’s back in the hospital. :( I’m sending healing vibes her way.
    On the word pretty… on the off chance you haven’t heard this poem, which I listen to all the time, as a mother of two daughters…

  84. Navhelowife

    Prayers to you. While I adore the internet and your blog, it’s times like these that I wish I was closer in real life so that I could help you with the practical needs. But instead, know that prayers are lifted up for you.

  85. Wendy

    So incredibly sorry to hear that Chickie is back in the hospital. It is definitely not your fault, she needed this weeked. Sending massive prayers your way.

  86. Sarah

    Praying. I’m so sorry. Don’t go down the Mommy self-blame road.

  87. Mandee

    Dammit all. So sorry for you and Chickie. Hope she’s back in fighting form soon! I’ve always been sickly and it’s completely frustrating. It’s times like last weekend that get you through the down times. Hang in there.

  88. Emmy's Mom

    double crap. hang in there (cause you need to). sending lots of thoughts of health and healing your way.

  89. Gwen

    Crap. Dammit. So sorry. Not your fault. Hugs for all of your family that want them.

  90. Kim

    This weekend was all about Chickadee being Chickadee. Not the sick Chickadee, not the Chickadee that can’t meet her (jerky) teachers’ expectations, not the Chickadee who feels like she won’t ever be able to do anything again. Nope, this weekend was about being herself, letting her nerdling flag fly high, oh, and the by the way, kicking some serious ass along the way. That has got to be some pretty powerful therapy right there.
    I am so, so sorry that your family is having to go through this. Sorry that things are so scary. But this weekend, Mir, this weekend was a lifetime memory smile. Nothing can ever take that away from her.
    You made the best decision you could, given the cricumstances you were under. That’s all any of us can do, and none of us gets to know what would’ve happened if we had chosen the other way. Be gentle with yourself. There’s a lot going on with you right now.
    You are beautiful,.inside and out, and so is your family. Stay strong, all of you, especially Chickie.

  91. Aimee

    dammit. I’m so sorry to hear this. I’m sending out a mighty big prayer for Chickie’s VERY speedy recovery. ps relapse can kiss my ASS

  92. Scottsdale Girl

    While my momma was battling ovarian cancer and chemo, she would have good days and go like she had a drill up her butt, then the next day she would be really zonked and mentally beat herself up for doing to much the day before. Then one day she said “I am SO GLAD I had that day, even if it means a slower recovery because I got some things DONE and had a good time!”

    here’s to a SHORT hospital visit. ((MIR))

    Also I hate the word “moist”. GAH

  93. Tracy B


  94. brigitte

    Eww, Scottsdale Girl, “moist” gets me, too!

    Mir, I want to go throttle the fates for you, even if I must dodge all those lightning bolts to do so. I think maybe she could have had a relapse anyway, so at least now she has some FUN stuff to reflect on. :-(

  95. Kerry

    Much love to you and yours. All things for good, even when it’s hard. Peace.

  96. Carrie

    you HAD to let her do all the things she did this weekend. She now knows that, after what she’s been through so far, she’s still got it – she’s still a kick-ass Chickie, even when her body isn’t totally cooperating. Those kind of mental heath boosts are what get you through the rough relapses and on to health, and bigger and better things. Thoughts and prayers to all of you.

  97. addy

    HUGS Mir. Hoping and praying for a quick recovery.

  98. Katie in MA

    aw, Mir. Maybe without all the positive reinforcement and compliments and the general kickassery she displayed this weekend, the relapse would have been so much worse. You are an amazing mama – don’t doubt yourself. There is too damn much of that going around. {She said, kindly. Sorry if I’m not coming across well – just hate that you’re going through this. :-( }

  99. kathy

    i really, very strongly agree with everyone else. When you have a kid who will likely never be “normal” medically and everyone looks at them weird and treats them weird, it is SO IMPORTANT for them to have a “normal” time to draw strength from, to know that their old self is not gone and is out there waiting for them. They may never actually obtain their previous level of “old self” but I think they keep trying to get there. So I see this past weekend as just as important for her as her current hospital stay.

  100. jodifur

    Oh Mir, you, and your family, can not catch a break. I’m just so, so, sorry. And I wish I had your address. Because I want to send chicken soup and a teddy bear and love. So, so, much love.

  101. Heide

    Well Damn! I am sorry to hear she had to pay a price for a good weekend. I have two children with medical diagnosis. One that requires constant vigilance but she lives a relatively normal life of a 17 year old. My other daughter has a rare auto immune condition that has kept her in and out of the hospital for the last ten years, it has kept her from school and almost any other “Normal” childhood experience. She learned early that physical exertion always came with a price, she just learned to choose very carefully. I tell you this not to be discouraging but to let you know that my daughter who is now 2O, will tell you that she had a wonderful childhood. She knew that her life was different but never considered it as less than. She is now a college freshman living at home, taking a reduced schedule, she has friends, she is happy and most of all she is the most remarkably resiliant person I have ever met. Absoutley nothing rattles her, she is a no drama girl. Problems are only solutions waiting to happen, Having a Mid-term on the same day as having major abdominal surgery (Next Friday) No prob! I hate that her life has been different but ultimatly it shaped her into the beautiful girl she is today.

    I hope your little chick is pain free and not getting poked to much and that you are learning to navigate the hospital experience without to much angst.

  102. Anna

    NO! DANGIT. *sigh* I’m praying for Chickie and the doctors and you. Take care of yourself and your sweetie.

  103. Sarahtoo

    Oh, no! I’m so sorry Chickie’s back in the hospital (and how scary for you), but please don’t beat yourself up for it. She had a phenomenal weekend, all talk of feelings aside, so that’s something for sure. You’re such a great mom–keep up the good work!

  104. NTE

    Oh crap. I hope Chickie feels as well as possible, as soon as possible. And, coming from somebody who remembers how difficult it was to be a teenager and deal with illness at the same time, there’s no sense in beating yourself up – you do your best, she does her best, and still, sometimes, the body decides to screw everything up. Got my fingers crossed that this is a slight setback, and everything moves positively soon.

  105. kapgaf

    The good time and the relapse are probably not even related and unless you were told by doctors “strictly no good times and no winning of competitions and don’t leave town”, please stop feeling guilty (one of the more useless emotions, I feel).

    My pet hate among words is “nice”. The word that means that you can’t think of anything to say about someone or something.

    Wishing you all the strength you need.

  106. E's Mommy

    I’m so sorry that Chickie is back in the hospital. You couldn’t have known that was going to happen though. Like all the other commenters said, you might’ve told her no and she could’ve relapsed anyway. At least she got to have a super few days before she had to go back to the hospital.

  107. Chris

    I am in total agreement – you did the best you could – Chickie had a great weekend and you can’t predict what would have happened if you had stayed home except that she would have missed a wonderful set of experiences. Here is to hoping she is better soon.

  108. shelly

    I myself have my share of ‘female’ issues and I think its been 18 surgeries now, I was very lucky to have had Dylan. It is not something I would wish on anyone. I am very sorry for the issues she is facing and I hope she is recovering? One thing I have learned (or even after 5 yrs. after dx and still learning lol) with a special needs child, is you can’t look back, and you have to do what you feel is best for your child at that time. My son has gone through medical issues and I have made decisions where I still say “coulda woulda shoulda’ and its my issue~he’s still smiling breathing and happy :) You are a warrior mama and she is yours, remember that. I am sure none of this is helpful and eases any of what you or she went or are going through and I am very sorry that this is happening. My thoughts are with you xoox

  109. Susan

    Hoping, hoping, hoping things are looking better by now! Thinking of you and sending good energy to your whole family.

  110. Kate in Michigan

    I keep checking back, hoping to see “SHE’S HOME AND FEELING BETTER!”

    I really am hoping you all get a really good day soon. xo

  111. kim

    What Kate said. Hugs to you and yours.

  112. Karen

    Thinking of you.

  113. Little Bird

    Is there anything we can do to help?

  114. Jodie

    Checking in and sending good prayers your way.

  115. jwg

    Getting a little worried. Hope everything is OK.

  116. Jackie

    Please tell me your sweet girl isn’t still in the hospital. Thoughts and prayers are continuting to be with you guys.


  117. Liz

    Hey Mama- Just worried for the WouldaShouldas and hoping Ms Chickie is home. The internet loves you.

  118. Beverly

    Thinking of you guys, and sending up prayers.

  119. summer

    Here’s another voice wishing all good things for your family, and hoping for an update soon. A good one, preferably.

  120. Michele

    Hope all is okay. I’ve been checking your site frequently. Miss your musings.

  121. jeebles

    I stumbled onto your blog a few weeks ago after googling “grody warts” (aka molluscum). Your words are both uplifting and completely grounded in real life and I hope and pray that this lastest setback is minor and short lived. Best wishes to all.

  122. Jamie

    Long time lurker, first time poster here… Hoping that all is settling down for you folks, and that everyone is okay!

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