Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Retard-N-Mexico

****Disclaimer - NOT a boo-hoo post, I hate boo-hooing and I loathe myself when catch myself doing it. This is an I'd-appreciate-if-you'd-laugh-at-my-strangeness post. Thank You.****



Now, time to laugh at just how much of a freak of nature I am.

I have a wee touch of asthma, no biggie, not the kind that'll kill you, just the kind that comes around when you're really sick or try excercising when it's cold outside or your allergies get super ugly. It only bothers me a few times a year and I don't even bother to have an emergency inhaler around because it'll go away in a few days and blah blah whatever, not a boo-hoo subject.

A couple of days ago however I was down with an ugly chest cold and just couldn't breathe enough to be comfortable so I took my butt to the pharmacy. LOVE Mexican pharmacies, you just walk in, say, "I want Viagra, Valium, Oxycotin, a couple queludes and um.....an inhaler." and they'll just bag the shit up and ring up your order. NO, I've never bought those things but it's cool that they're there if I ever decided to become a druggie or my hubby goes limpy, and the inhaler part is a plus.

So, I bought an inhaler, ran home, Googled it to make sure it was the right stuff and wasn't going to kill me and then proceeded to try and figure out how to use it. I've only used an inhaler one other time in my life AND it's this.....weird but cool child saftey type inhaler (i.e. you're fucked if you're sleep deprived and can't read the Spanish instruction manual).

Anyhoo, I called my husband over for help and his first question was "You have asthma?" Um...yes, nice to meet you lover.

Moving on. He figured it out, I used it and in 10 seconds I could breathe. Those things are freaking MAGIC!! I don't know why I never bother to use them when I'm screwed up, but whatever, it was great.

For about 1 minute. After about a minute I started to sweat and feel shaky and my heart was going wild and I was feeling just WRONG.

I thought, "Aw shit, freakin' Mexican drugs, gonna kill me after all, CRAP."

I knew if I was going to die quick or something I wouldn't be able to make it across the border to Texas in time and there was NO way I was going to a Mexican hospital. If they saved me I'd end up with brain damage, one eye and a penis. Not that a penis would be bad, then I could fufill my life long dream of writing my name in the snow with pee, but, um.....got off track.

SO. I did what any respectable possibly dying person would do, and Googled it.

Don't judge, maybe there'd be a McGuyver cure using baking soda, an onion and a paper clip. You never know.

Luckily, Google had a list of possible side affects (in ENGLISH) and after reading two of them "Nervousness, anxiety...." I had the "Ah Haaaaaaa" (Ah haaaaa dumbass) moment.

I forgot to take my nerve pills that day. BTW I like to say "nerve pills" like an old person because it's just more fun than saying the up-to-date-clinical version. Like, "Hold on dearest, let me take my nerve pill and then I'll mix us some martini's to go with our jello mold desert and we can discuss the new neighbors, I'd swear they look like commies."

So anyhoo, I forgot to take the good ole calm-your-ass-down pills and the medicine in the inhaler sent me into an unprovoked yet immediate anxiety attack. It was a weird feeling because I always have to have something to BE freaked out about to fall off the crazy cart, but the asthma drugs can trigger one sans-provacation.

Who knew???

So there you have it, I'm a freak. I mean really, just......REALLY?

10 minutes and one nerve pill later and I was fine (Score one for Google bitches!) but without that coveted accidental penis transplant. Next time.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Shit, but not on OUR shingle.

I blog in my head on a daily basis, unfortunately between working 6 days a week and watching (and loving) 2 babies under 2 years the minute my feet hit my floor at home it's been only in my head. I have so much to say and I'll never give up on my blog, it's been here for me through so much, and what I mean is that THE PEOPLE that read it and comment and encourage have been here for me. As happy as I am now I'll never forget the kindness of all the commenters and friends I've made here.

But anyhoo, there's always another chance to write when the time comes. People might not come to read but my blog is still here, and I'd die before I deleted it!

So, without further adoo (never tried to spell that one before, adew??? no wait....adeu!??) Anyways.

Even though I'm working in Mexico now I still have to cross over Texas at least once a week. Crossing means answering the questions of the border officers. Border officers are brave and RIGHT THERE on the front of our line protecting the U.S. from a multitude of sin crossing our borders. But they're human and some of them might be brave but also ugly.

Most of the time it's just the normal "Are you transporting any fruits, vegetables, tobacco, liquor or other substances? Cash in excess of $10,000? Firearms? Have a good day."

Sometimes it gets to "What are you doing living in Mexico?"

***note, I respect these men and women and the job they do, I am ALWAYS polite, smiling, and absolutely cooperative with ANY request or question they ask. Even when they are outright out of line I stay level headed and never give them back any treatment that they might dish out to me. NEVER. (I was raised better damn it) They are protecting my family that still lives in the U.S. and they risk they're lives, they deserve respect***

I tell them my husband is deported and sometimes they leave it at that. Others ask "Why" (and others try and guess! like it's a game or something) but I always answer truthfully that he got in trouble. Some leave it at that and still others have to ask "What EXACTLY did he do?" At which point I always die a little inside because the answer sounds bad and it's not fair because they don't know the circumstances that led up to it, just the bare facts.

At this point they usually go silent or just give me a look, or won't look at me at all which I've gotten used to even though it still hurts. But some take it upon themselves to take a step away from the higher standards of service that they should hold themselves to - and get ugly.

I've heard, "Why would be with a guy like that?" "You're good looking, you could do better, why not go back home?" "What, do you have kids with him? Is that why you're here?" "Aren't you afraid for your kids living there?" And more, but I try not to remember them. And it's not just the questions, it's the looks and the TONE, the pity and disgust that hurt so much.

One officer in particular is reliably ugly. I don't know what his deal is but I cringe (and I've talked to THREE other expats that live here who've had the same trouble with him) every time I see I'm in his lane.

This last week my baby Niko spiked a fever of 103 and had been fighting colds and infections since Christmas and I'd had ENOUGH with Mexican medicine and requested to leave early from work (so I'd make it across the border before the doctors would close) and headed to Texas.

I ended up in Mr. Ugly's lane but thought, hell, maybe he'll be nicer since I have an adorable baby with me. Unfortunately, he didn't seem to remember me at all, (after all the times of harrassing me) And started in on the questions. He moved from the normal questions, into the sticky ones and right on over to the ugly ones. His final statement to me was "Huh, well.....he's better off over there (Mexico) then anyways."

*SLAP*

I was speechless. I was so polite to him and he just thwacks me across the heart with that one. So few words but so hurtful. He was talking abut my HUSBAND, that I LOVE SO MUCH that I gave up my easy life and my friends and family to move to another country 2000 miles away. The sweet wonderful father of my children who has worked so hard since coming here and who doesn't even deserve to BE here.

He then handed me my passport back and told me to HAVE A GOOD DAY.

(OMFG!)

I cried on the way to the doctors office and brooded the entire day and night and next day. The next day I had to return to Tx to shop for my husbands business and I hemmed and hawed and freaked out in my head but I decided that I wasn't taking any more. When I reached the border agent of the day (a very polite gentlemen that pity's me but is nice to me) I very quietly and politely told him that I'd had trouble with an officer the day before and was wondering how to file a formal complaint. I was so embarrased and I even told him I was SORRY! He thought it was funny and wanted to know who it was but I told him that I wanted to do this the right way and didn't want to enable any gossip. He kept trying but I held fast so he wrote me an orange ticket for secondary and off to park I went.

Another officer came out to ask if I'd been helped yet and I had to explain again and he went off to find the supervisor.

I was nearly dying at this point, I'm just NOT a wave-maker in life but I wouldn't be able to get OVER it if I didn't do something. I walked the supervisor through the conversation (and felt SO STUPID when I cried after telling him the final comment and how I thought that it was cruel) and told him that I respect their jobs and know that sometimes people have bad days and make mistakes but that this man had crossed the line too many times.

He was VERY kind and respectful and told me a little bit about how the border works and what officers are allowed and not allowed to ask. I told him that I had no problem with the questions, that I'd answer anything they ask and he said that I'm one of the FEW who cooperate. That struck me as strange, I'd never even considered not answering a question. He hinted that the questions about my husband and why he was deported COULD have been over the line, depending on if the officer was suspecting me of something and was trying to eek out info of me by asking that - or if they were just being curious.

I assured him agian that the questions don't bother me, it was just the mans statement, his cruely-inteded (opinion) remark that had upset me so much. He winced and said that no, it was not ok. We talked for awhile about different things and he told me that he would sit the man down privately and have a talk with him and explain to him what questions are appropriate to ask and what are not and that it's not ok to spout out opinions about peoples lives. He gave me his office number and said that if anything ever happens to call him right away and that if he's not there to please leave him a message. I thanked him very much.

After relaying all of this to my husband he was cynical and said that the guy wouldn't say a word to the agent but I don't think that's true. The supervisor used to be in the armed forces and he even mentioned that though their job is tough, they have to hold themselves to higher standards - and I truly think he meant it. I believe he's an honest man and will do just what he said and that's all I would have asked for. I wasn't out for blood, I just had to get it off my chest and hoped that the agent would at least have a mention of his rudeness made to him.

So, that's that. I meant to go on and tell you about some REALLY FABULOUS things that have happend to us as of late but I've already typed your eyes off I'm sure, so I'll save it for the next post. There needs to be more posting because my poor brain is filling up with so much to say if I don't get it out I'll start talking to myself, or strangers. :D

Thank You for letting me share this experience with you, and if you know a border agent or any other person of service that's a good person, make sure to give them a smile or an extra hug the next time you see them.

-Respectfully
Gringa-N-Mexico