A fine serving of hysteria for breakfast.

It’s been a terrible day.

It started with an email from the DMV reminding me of the appointment I made to take Mother to get her real ID next week. The real ID is going to become a requirement for national travel here in the US. A regular driver’s license won’t cut it anymore, but you can use either a real ID or a passport, the latter of which my mom’s already applied for.

The email said that a certified birth certificate would be required. I recalled that my mom didn’t have a certified copy when I took her to get her passport. With some reluctance I picked up my landline phone to call her. I wasn’t awake yet, or I might’ve handled the situation better by… I dunno… sending an email. Or smoke signals. Maybe some semaphore.

I gave her the bad news.

“So, you’re saying that I need a certified copy of my birth certificate to get my real ID?” she asked.

“Yes, that’s what I’m saying,” I said with heavy hesitation. I cringed.

“NOOO!! NOOO!! NOOO!! Our lives are ruined. Our lives are ruined! NOOO! NOOO! Oh, why, why? Why, why? And I was in such a good mood. I just went out to eat with my friends and everything.”

“Uh-huh,” I murmured. “That’s nice. I’m sure you had fun.”

I found the page on my internet browser (I use a box computer here next to my landline) where she could apply to get a certified birth certificate. (My mom does internet on her cellphone, but she can’t fill out a form easily that way.) “Okay, so, what’s your father’s full name?” I asked.

She recited it for me, and I started typing.

“They want your driver’s license number,” I said.

“NOOOO! NOOO! NOOO! Why, why? Why, oh why? Our lives are ruined. Our lives are ruined.”

I told her what was on the screen. “They use it to verify your identity, and they charge $1.85 for running the info and confirming that you’re you.”

“I’ll need a magnifying glass,” she warbled. “Oh, honey, I’m so sorry. I just can’t cope with anything.”

“Eh.” I facepalmed.

She read her driver’s license number to me twice, and we’re hoping for the best that she read it correctly.

After an eternity, I reached a payment page. “I’ll pay for you, and you can reimburse me,” I said.

“And it’s $1.85?” she asked.

“Nope. It’s around $18.00,” I said.

“NOOO! NOOO! NOOO! Why, why? I thought it was $1.85!” (Just let me assure you all that mother is quite well off financially.) “Why isn’t it $1.85?” she asked beseechingly. “Why? Why?”

My brain started to shut down. So my mom started asking me all these mind-numbing questions. “Are you going to call and cancel for me? Ask them when we should reschedule. I don’t know when I’ll get my birth certificate.”

“It’s coming in September,” I said. “September is six to eight weeks away.”

“Just promise to ask them!”

“Okay,” I lied. “But listen, you have plenty of time. We’re also getting you a passport, and you could just use it. But also, the email said that the date for needing a real ID for national flights has been pushed back to May, 2023.”

“Who said that? Who said that? Maybe you’re wrong,” she crowed.

I glanced at the official-looking email. “The federal government,” I replied. “And I don’t think they’d lie about it.”

Then, things got worse. My mom, perhaps trying to atone for ruining my day, started trying to have a conversation with me.

“Are you reading anything these days?” she asked.


“Are you writing anything?”


“How’s your father doing?”


“How’s your dog, LuLu?”


“Are you getting rid of all the shedded dog fur?”


Because, see, it’s impossible for me to verbalize it when I’ve run out of energy. And at this point, she was sucking what faint vestiges of energy I still had. Eventually, several minutes later, she got the hint, but she also took offense.

“Very well,” she said. “Bye.” Click. I hadn’t even said goodbye or hung up the receiver yet. Nice.

And that was how my day started, before I could even eat my oatmeal and take my psych meds.

However, I have a good evening planned. The Olympics come on in half an hour, and I’m excited to watch the ladies’ team event. I think I’ll just veg. I spent several hours earlier vacuuming up dog fur on my hands and knees. I got two areas done, but there’s so much more.

Oh! You all want to hear something wild? I dreamed I lost five pounds. So this morning I decided to weigh myself. Wow! My weight’s down from 209 to 205! Oh my goodness! What a great way to start an otherwise horrible day!! I might blog more about that later!

I hope everyone out there’s having a great day!!

13 thoughts on “A fine serving of hysteria for breakfast.

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