Sunday, December 18, 2011

Be Enough...Love...

As I live my life every day, mainly as wife to a wonderful husband and mother to three boys, my flaws make themselves known and how they are so hard to look it.

My imperfections glare at me.

The insecurity that fills me as I walk and live among other mothers, other women.

The frustration that creeps out as I deal with the challenging situations that crop up.

The impatience that rears its ugly head as I deal with the various temperaments of my kiddos.

The sharpness that comes from my tongue whenever I respond to situations and people.  Not to mention that sarcasm that laces my words when I talk to my children along with the snappish comebacks I give to my husband.

Not good.  Not good at all.


I am full of holes.

It humbles me and makes me realize how much I need my God for help and other people for advice.

These flaws show me where I can't ever boast about how great I am.

This is good.

It shows me that I am human and I need to accept those weaknesses in me along with my strengths.  That as I grow and try to be better, I am okay.

The way I am is who I am and that is enough.

These flaws help me focus on the things I do get right.


Like love.

Love I can do well.

The love for my husband and boys is fierce and strong and unwavering even in the tough times.

The love they have for me is unconditional and forgiving.

The love God has for me is beyond words.

Because of this I love and this love is my strength.

It's what I can give freely.

To all who are around me and to those far away - family, other moms, neighbors, friends.

Though I am flawed in all kinds of ways, this I can do.

And for me...this is enough.

Being me, with all my holes, is enough.

Because being able to love well and deeply makes it so.



Linking up with Just Be Enough this Monday which celebrates you just being you.  









Friday, December 16, 2011

Countdown...

This is the latest piece in the story of Alex and Kayla's which I began here and continues here, here and here.


-------------


Three...two...one...


Three...two...one...


Okay.    Kayla sighed, as she moved her eyes around as she took in her darkness.

She was exhausted.  She was trying.

Kayla baby, hang on.  Hang on.  I love you. 


She could hear Alex's voice.  She had been hearing him for the longest time now.  So comforting yet filled with heartbreak.

He missed her.

Every time she heard his voice, an ache would run through her - deep and gut wrenching.   She missed him just as much.

She would then try to open her eyes but found herself trapped in this darkness.

Along with Alex's voice, she was now hearing other voices: Cameron, Alex's son.  The nurses - she could tell it was them in the way they spoke to Alex.  Marlon - Alex's manager.  Friends, even though there were moments she confused Tracey with Genevieve.  The boys - Seth and Zane - the two-thirds of the jazz trio she belonged to.  She remembered that fact just recently.  That she was a musician.  And a photographer.

Alex's voice made her remember that last fact.  With the sound of voices, came a memory or two, except for the nurses, of course, since she didn't know them at all.

 Kayla, honey, please wake up.  For me.  Sweet girl, please wake up. 


It was Alex again.  His deep tone edged with his New Zealand accent was filled with heartbreak again. It cracked.  He was crying.  Again.

Her heart clenched.

Oh Alex.  I'm trying.  I'm trying. 


She remembered how she would do almost anything for him, she loved him so much.  This was no exception.

Okay.  Another try.

Five...four...three...two...one.  


Kayla strained as she tried to force her eyes open.

Kayla...


Tears threatened behind her eyes.


Alex, I'm trying.  I'm trying.  Almost there.


Almost there. 




This piece is inspired by a prompt from Write on Edge which asks us write a piece of fiction or creative non-fiction about a countdown, starting with “Three, two, one.”




Write On Edge: Red-Writing-Hood



Monday, December 5, 2011

A Memory Captured

There are those moments that are frozen in time by digital.  I'm thankful to have a good number of those thanks to the kiddos I have.  One such moment is below.

You see, my baby, is growing up.  In these last weeks he's been maturing at what seems like light speed.  This toddler is soaking it all in and expressing it all out in his walking, his talking, his memory, his personality.  

Sweet boy is growing fast as he's discovering the world, in all his purity. 

One such moment is below.  Just in an instant, while my back was turned, he climbed in the chair and started typing on the computer.

Yeah, like it was the most natural thing in the world.  He moved that computer mouse around too.  So grown-up.  He was on his computer like his Mommy.   And loving it. 

Unbelievable. 

In my mind's eye, though, he will always be this. 




Just linking up with Galit at These Little Waves and Alison at Mama Wants This! for their Memories Captured link celebrating those memories we get and hold dear. Feel free to link up and then go visit the others who have shared their gorgeous memories.  I promise, you will swoon. 

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

All About The NaNo...

This month has been a busy one.  The husband was away for 8 days.  I had surgery a week after.  Thanksgiving came a week after that and from day 1 of November I have been participating in NaNoWriMo - National Novel Writing Month where you're expected to write 50,000 words in 30 days on an original novel project.

Writing straight through without stopping. 1667 words a day.

This is my third year participating.  I didn't finish but I came closer to the goal than I ever have at over 30,000 words.  

I am left with a sense of rejuvenation and a consistency in writing that I have not had in a looong time.

With a momentum  in my writing that I plan to keep up in the coming months.

Not to mention a good 150 pages of an original novel draft. Yippee...

So though I didn't get the win, it's been an amazing experience with amazing results.

I am left with some things more important than the win.

Truly unexpected, NaNo has meant more to me and my writing this year than the previous two years.

I almost didn't participate.  So glad I did.



So that's been my November.  





Congratulations to all my NaNo peeps who finished.  Kudos!


And to the rest of the participants, like me, who didn't finish, kudos to you too, for putting forth the effort.  We are closer to finishing that novel than we were at the start of the month.   Happy Dance! 




Did you participate in NaNoWriMo?  How was your experience this year?

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Recovery and Reflection

I had that surgery - a laparoscopy and I am now recovering.  No driving or heavy lifting for a week and that especially includes the 25 pound toddler.  I should be fully healed in two.

I am sore.  I tire easily.  I have three incisions with three sets of stitches to heal from.  It reminds me of those days after I gave birth where all the steps I took where gingerly so there would be less pressure on the pelvic area and how much I dreaded going to the bathroom because it hurt.


The surgery went well and I didn't have to have the fallopian tube removed.  It was discovered that the mass I had was not on the tube at all but on my ovary.  So the mass has been sent away to pathology and she will call in a few days with the results -- hopefully it will be negative for cancer.  Praying and crossing all fingers.

I still have my fallopian tube.

I am still the woman I was before the surgery.

Amazing that a moment or situation can cause one to reflect like I did on my last post.

It was good for me.  I needed that self-reflection...that reminder of what really makes me who I am as a woman.  A reminder not to get caught up in the physical aspects that make me who I am.

Vulnerability feels prickly but it is good for this girl who plays down everything.

Thank you for your words of encouragement during that most vulnerable time for me last week, on this blog, on my Facebook page, via email.  So good for me.  So what I needed to help me through the emotion I felt.

Onto the next thing: Thanksgiving Dinner.   My oldest son's favorite holiday.  Luckily I just have to make the list, he and his Dad will make the rest. 

And the next round of reflections will be on what I am thankful for...







Wednesday, November 16, 2011

PYHO: Losing My Womanhood?

This Thursday, I am going in for surgery to possibly (strong possibility) to remove one of my fallopian tubes.  There is a sizeable mass either in or on the tube itself and the doctors want to remove it.  They don't think it's cancerous but they won't really know until they go in and see.

I'm a little scared.

A lot apprehensive.

I'm ready to back out.

This fallopian tube is a part of my reproductive cycle.  It's an organ that physically and specifically defines my womanhood, like my uterus.   To not have it anymore is a daunting prospect.  It's a part of me, after all.

The doctor is decisive as is my husband.  If the mass is in the tube, the tube has to go.   Goodness forbid if this mass causes my fallopian tube to rupture.   That would mean emergency surgery and we wouldn't want that.

No, I think.  We wouldn't but then taking my fallopian tube means it causes my chances of getting pregnant to take longer.   And what if you affect something else in that area?  Cause damage of some kind that limits my chances of getting pregnant again?

Not that the hubby and I are planning to have anymore children -- at least we're 98% sure of that.

But still,  what about the 2%? I think.   It's nice to have the choice.

Only one tube.

Will I be half a woman because part of what defines me physically as a woman will be gone?

I know the answer to that.  Physical body parts and organs aren't the only thing that make me the woman I am.   I know.

But still it's hard not to feel that I will be less the woman I am physically because part of my reproductive system will be gone.  That area will not be whole ever again.

So I'm sad.  Grieving a little...over the loss of part of my womanhood; over the possible loss of the opportunity to be able to bear children again; over the fact that my reproductive system will not be whole.  A huge piece will be missing from it.

I know I shouldn't feel sad.

I know I should just focus on the three beautiful boys I have, but I can't help think that this could be the end of my childbearing times.

I'm just saying.

I am grateful for my life - wish feverently that this mass is not malignant and that I go through the surgery with no complications.

As I work through being okay with only having a part of my reproductive cycle.

According to my husband, the "healthy" part.

He's 100% right.

I'll just need to have my moment to grieve.

I promise it won't be a long moment and I will come out of it grateful for the blessings I have.


Pouring my heart out at Shell's...


 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A Featured Post...





Today I have written a post featured in the magazine over at Studio30 Plus, an amazing community for writers and bloggers who are thirty years and older.  

Feel free to stop over and visit. Any comments you leave would definitely be appreciated as I'd love to read your thoughts.  It's about a topic that is close to my heart right now.

And for you writers and bloggers who are thirty - cough!, check out the site.  Join us.  It's an amazing community to be a part of.


Thanks much!  

Monday, November 7, 2011

ReBound

"Sorry.  We've...we've decided to get back together."

The words were in the back of my mind as I entered the local bar/dance club on 145th street between Amsterdam and Broadway in Harlem with my friend.  They were from the man I had fallen in love with and were spoken to me just a couple of days ago.   He went back to his girlfriend of eight years.

A dance club mix of Michael Jackson's Billie Jean emanated throughout the club.  As my friend and I walked towards the center of the room, the rhythm and beats pulsated from the walls.

It was dark and packed with gyrating bodies.  Within minutes, my girlfriend became entwined with her boyfriend.

I yearned to be wanted.  To have someone desire me.

He was dancing in the corner of the dance floor and looking at me.  Tall like my ex, yet fair-skinned with an easy grin on his face.  He started dancing his way over to me.

He held his hand out towards me.

I couldn't resist the invitation because the beats were flowing through me, urging me to move.  And because this tall, good-looking guy with the laid-back smile held his hand out to me.

He wanted me.

I took his hand and he led me not only to the dance floor, but later, in the weeks to come,  to his apartment, to his room and to his bed.

And that continued.

Me, feeling desired, sought-after, then empty because whenever we came together, it was about the same thing.

Yet, it didn't matter because this tall, handsome, charmer wanted me.   Though it was clear in his distant eyes and his rushed manner when we were done spending time together, that he really wanted something else.

So four weeks later, I sat on the floor of my room, holding the phone in my hand after dialing him for the fourth time in a row.  He had picked up then.

"Mel, we're done, baby.  This is not going to work,"  he said in his lazy drawl.

His words echoed through my head as I sat staring at the blue carpeted floor through hot, flowing tears.

Of course, it wasn't going to.

This relationship was doomed from the start.


This piece was inspired by a memoir prompt from Write on Edge which asks you to write about a relationship that you knew was doomed from the start.  


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

While The Honey Is Away...

Honey,

While you are away, I will take a deep breath and fully care for our three sons, ages 6, 4 and 1, meeting their every milk and snack demand which comes once every hour, a few times unwisely so, just because I will need a few moments of quiet and three yelling voices is not conducive to a joyful Mommy.


I will do the school drop-offs you usually do, though this newbie driver may bow out of driving in the most extreme snow conditions - like today, for instance. It's an unofficial snow day, by the way.  The boys aren't complaining and they should be at school tomorrow.  I hope.


I will pray for lots of patience and creativity.


I will read to them and pray with them before bed like you do, though I'll have only one brain cell left and will barely be able to concentrate.


I will endure the cries of "Daddy" from the 19 month old whenever we pass by the front door. "Daddy will be home soon" I will say about 100 times before next week.


I will try to avoid the doctor's office and any run-ins the law.  Thank goodness our car registration is up to date.


Though I get the whole bed to myself, I will miss the cuddling. The cat is trying to take your place.

Oh, I will try to remember to take care of the cat - though there's only so much my one brain cell can handle.


I will hope to have nutritious meals on the table for your sons, however we may be rocking the hotdogs alot.  And the mac n' cheese.  And the halloween candy.  Yes, seriously.  Feel free to cringe.


We will survive, I promise, and I will have the boys greeting you in one piece with all their fingers and toes and teeth and not so many bumps and bruises when you return in a week.

That's my hope, anyway.


Most importantly, while you are away, I will try not to miss you too much.

Okay, fat chance of that happening.  I am really missing you terribly right now.

Really.

In fact, when I'm done writing this, I will probably go and have a good, aching cry.   Ugh!

And then I will have some coffee and try to refocus.


Enjoy your trip, love, and I can't wait to see you again soon.




Saturday, October 29, 2011

Baby Happy

This past year and a half has been a good one.

 A sweet one.

And a stressful one.

We have been going through a financial storm of proportions that seem at times epic to us.

Life is filled with constant expenses,  alot at times of the necessary variety, and the husband and I trying to figure out how to creatively cover it all.

I understand now the deep effect money can have on marriages and family.

I marvel at my mother who raised me alone on one income while we lived in an expensive city. I realize the creative ways she kept me fed and clothed and even have figured out the ways in which she sacrificed for me.

This past year and a half, there were lots of moments when I felt like life wasn't good.

That this isn't a good time in our lives. Stressing over how we're going to make ends meet in moments makes this seem a dark period in our lives for me.

 I have cried in moments, even.

Then I remembered to pray, which helps a ton.

And then this happens.




And this.


Sweetness,  and this.




Oh gosh, and this!





Which makes me all happy and warm and fuzzy inside.

Just fills me with joy.

And makes me realize what a magical year and a half this has been.

This bright spot with the hazel eyes and chubby cheeks, with chubby belly to match.

Of course, there have been a whole bunch of other bright spots which include the husband and the two older boys - the beauty and blessing of the amazing family I get to have...

...but I get a daily dose of this baby happy, and it gives me perspective through the storm.



For sure, it does.  

Friday, October 21, 2011

Abyss

When you open your eyes you will find yourself suspended over a vast abyss of darkness, darkness that is floating up now to surround you.


This is inspired by a prompt from Write on Edge that asks you to compose a post in the form of a text–160 characters. Your text must elicit or express fear.


Write On Edge: Red-Writing-Hood

Monday, October 17, 2011

Colorado Autumn




Every year, for me, autumn evokes bright sunshine over crystal clear days.

Stepping out of the car with a view of not-too-distant mountains

And onto a farm called Cottonwood.

Surrounded by bright orange pumpkins laying on fields of brown and green.




Little boys getting lost in hay bale mazes while

Grown-up conversations happen on the sidelines.



Sheep.




Little boys wandering the patches looking for that perfect pumpkin. 




Bright smiles.   Squinty eyes.  Aimless walks.




Then leaving to go home with our pumpkin booty. 




This is inspired by a prompt from Write on Edge which asks to write a piece on what autumn evokes for you. 



Thursday, October 13, 2011

Double Infinity


This is the continuation of Alex and Kayla's story.  It picks up from when we last saw them in Memory. Oh, and if you want to start from the beginning with these two you can find them here and here


--------------- 


Alex caressed that spot on Kayla's neck, the one with the tattoo of the "A" wrapped in a New Zealand Koru spiral, representing his love of the Maori culture.

He touched the same spot on his neck, his fingers softly caressing the "K" in script intertwined with honeysuckle.  That was Kayla with her favorite flower.

The deep blue ink still popped against her chocolate skin.  They had gotten these tattoos a mere month before the accident.  The "A" was the only one in addition to the double infinity on her right wrist that marked her body.  Alex had a matching one of that one too.

Double Infinity.  Twice forever.  That was how long they would love each other for.

"No more ink, Alex," she told him as her eyes watered with the stinging pain on her wrist.

"No more, baby.  I promise."  He  grinned, elated that she agreed to get the two.   The funny things love will make you do.

"You'll get more, though," she said.

She was right.  He would.  He had elaborate Maori designs on both upper arms and across his lower back.

"Your tramp stamp," she often teased.

He wouldn't be able to help but add to his current set.  But that "K" and the double infinity, those would remain his favorites.

He leaned in and kissed her on that spot on her neck, then laid his head on her sleeping form.  She was three months into the coma now.

He had only a few hours left before he needed to leave and be on set.

He took her right wrist in his hand and put it to his lips.

Twice forever, Kayla.  Remember that.  You just need to wake up, baby.  


Wake up. 




This piece is inspired by a prompt from Write on Edge which asks us to write a piece in which a tattoo figures prominently.




Monday, October 10, 2011

On My Own

I sat on the toilet, in the bathroom stall, bent over.   


I heaved, silently sobbing.  


The memory lingered.  I could see the scene now through my tears. 


The black car.  My godfather sitting in the driver's seat.  My mother and I standing nearby. 


"Okay, make me proud.  Be careful.  Study hard."  Her words. 


We hugged.  The anxious pit in my stomach lodged tight. 


It was just us for 17 years of my life.  She raised me on her own.  This would be the first time we would be living apart. 


She released me.  


She would head back to New York City and I would stay here in New Orleans and begin my first semester at Tulane University.  


I tried not to shake.  I held the tears that formed in my eyes in check as did she. 


My backbone, my support would not be there now. 


I was on my own. 


The memory faded as I bent my head again and cried silently. 


I was alone.  Would I make it? 


*


Two months later, I leaned against the phone booth. 


"It's good, Mom.  It's all good.  I'm doing great.  An A on my first test in Biology.  B on my first chem quiz.  I'm settled in here at the dorm." 


I nodded, taking in her last words.  


 I responded.  "Yes, I will.  I promise.  I'll talk to you soon.  Bye."


I hung up the phone and left the booth.  


I walked the long ornate hall of the girls' dormitory lobby towards the winding stairs at the end of the corridor.   


It was home to me now.  


A calm, settled feeling washed through me as I climbed the stairs, my dorm key in my hand.  




This piece is inspired by prompt from Write on Edge which asked to write a memoir post inspired by the statement "“The scariest moment is always just before you start. After that, things can only get better.” - Stephen King, On Writing




.  

Sunday, October 9, 2011

When The Words Are Short

When the words are short.

Impatient. Full of frustration.

When the attitude is strong. Harsh. Unrelenting.

And the cracks in The Mommy show through.


Thank goodness for apologies.

And hugs.

And kid-like short-term memories.

Forgiveness.

And love.

Pure.

Unadulterated. Unconditional.

Love.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

My Baby is Growing Up...




We pulled into a Sonic Burger place and parked.

"Can I get out?"  My 4 year old asks.

"Yes," My husband replies.

The 4 year old unbuckled himself and opened the door of the SUV and jumped out.

Say what???

"He's four," the Husband reminds me.

Okay, yes, I know, but like, when did that happen and why so fast?

When did he learn how to do that?  Not too long ago he was lying in his rear-facing car seat staring into a mirror wondering who that face was looking back at him.

Now he's looking in the rearview mirror back at me with a big grin while I'm driving.

"Hey Mom, Mom," he says.  "I'm going to make a machine that takes all the shots [as in vaccinations] of the world and makes them disappear so we don't have to get them."

Or

"Mom, mom.  What would happen if a plane had no engine?  What would happen to it?"

Ahh...

My baby - my precious middle son - is growing up...

My heart clenches.





Wednesday, September 21, 2011

To Push Or Not To Push...

So I admit I am feeling a little guilty.

And slightly annoyed that I'm even feeling this guilt.

Because my 6 year old boy has now been home from school for two days because he has not been feeling well.  He's dealing with multiple cold sores in his mouth and all over his lips.  He's miserable.  He can't eat because it hurts too much.

Yet he's not in a serious illness situation.  He's just feeling miserable.  

We went to soccer practice yesterday -- in the park, two steps from our home -- because I thought I should get him out in the fresh air and maybe he'd be better for playing.   He practiced for 5 minutes total and sat down the rest of the time,  because he was feeling so out of it.

I felt so bad because I feel like I put him in a funky situation.

I don't think the coaches quite understood his slowness and lethargy when they were expecting him to be involved 100%.  It was almost obvious that maybe we should've stayed home, though secretly, I wanted the coaches to see that he's there - he's committed to this thing, he was just sick.  Even he wished he could do more.  Truly, he is not a slacker.

Why did I feel like I had to prove that?

Maybe I pushed it just a little?


Now this morning, I look in the school newsletter and see that the school is in the midst of these important pupil count days (that started September 23rd) where they need all the students to really be in attendance so they can garner the funding they need.  I get it.  I'm on the PTA Executive Committee.  I understand the need for funding for our school and making every effort to get it.

Both older boys were out yesterday, my oldest is out today.

Should I have pushed the older one to go to school today?   He doesn't have a serious illness yet he's miserable and I'm thinking one more day of rest could certainly do some good right?  Yet, I don't want to be part of any obstacle that prevents our school from getting the funding they need.

Why do I even feel this pressure?

Really, why am I feeling guilty because my boy's sick and at home?

Like I'm the Slacker Parent.

Why does it sometimes come down to numbers and performance over health and well-being?


Pouring my heart out today over at Shell's...






Friday, September 16, 2011

First Soccer Game on A Warm Afternoon...


The 6 year old participated in his first soccer game this afternoon.



It was a beautiful afternoon - one huge green field, the mountains bathed in sunlight as the backdrop, temperate weather.



Our boy did well.  He was into it.  And he scored a goal.  His first one. Sweet!



And he blocked a ball from going into the field goal - some good defense.  More importantly, he went up to his friend, after the game, and told him "Good Game".   Most importantly, besides having fun, he reigned in his competitive side.  No tackling the other team members, though he did have a few words for them.

His team lost but all the kids were in good spirits.  They learned more about soccer today.  They had treats/snacks afterwards.



Our boys played around for a bit, rolling down the grassy hill.



Then, we walked back to the car, the mountains in front of us, having spent quality time together as a family on a good afternoon.


Coolness...

Monday, September 12, 2011

These Magical Moments...

Just linking up with Shell at Things I Can't Say and sharing a few magical moments.  



There have been a few special ones for our family...

Like the special brotherly love moments...


On a hotel bed as we travelled cross country
(my oldest at  2.5 years w/ my middle at 3 weeks old)



1st time in Colorado in our new apartment, two days later...



And then throw in a third boy... and there's more brotherly love...

 Couch Antics 


More Couch Antics


Not to mention the Graduating From Kindergarten moment...




And the Gymnastics Show Week Moment (on the uneven bars)...



Not to be trumped by the 1st Trip in Seven Years Just-the-Two-of-Us Alone Moment...



 We've had a few.  

What are your magical moments?  Just link up at Shell's....


Sunday, September 11, 2011

In the Thick of It: One 9-11 Memory

"A plane flew into one of the Trade Center towers."  That came from one of the engineers who just walked into the office.  I was on my way back to my desk.

Me, an administrative assistant temp about to train the new hire, working in an engineering firm near the United Nations building in Manhattan.

The new hire turned on the radio.  It was all we had, as the t.v. in the conference room was broken.  We gathered around the radio - the two admins and about five engineers.  

An accident at the World Trade?  A couple of the engineers went to make calls to their colleagues for the Port Authority (housed in the World Trade Center) was one of our clients.

We listened.  Suddenly the reporter's voice became frantic.  "A plane just slammed into the South tower! A plane just hit the South Tower!"

My hand went over my mouth and there was a collective jolt from the seven of us.  This was no accident.

I called my husband.  We made a plan to meet at noon downstairs in front of my building.  I tried my mother numerous times but couldn't get through.

I remember walking past the huge floor to ceiling window that faced south down towards the World Trade Center and saw a mass of people making their way uptown.  A mass exodus on the ground...huge mass of dark smoke in the air.  Eerie.

So for the next two hours gruesome events unfolded from the radio....the Pentagon was hit...the South tower collapsing, then the North tower...flight 93 going down in Pennsylvania...

The anger...the fear that overcame us.  Were we next?  We were right next store to the United Nations - a likely target.

A gathering in the conference room of all the employees...ranting, raving, cursing, questioning.




I headed downstairs at 12:05.  Walked through the empty lobby and through the front doors and towards my husband who waited for me outside.

Hand in hand we made our way through the crowded streets filled with walking people...people who had been down there and walked up, people who evacuated their buildings...people as stunned and confused as we were.    We passed through thick throngs of people as we made our way several blocks downtown and over to the East side to seek shelter in a friend's apartment.  The subways were shut down and we couldn't get home.

The memory of this morning and those thereafter...going home on the subway to Washington Heights surrounded by people covered in ash and soot, the stunned looks on all our faces...walking by St. Vincent's hospital at night...quiet...the medical staff waiting for the ambulances to come...but none were coming...will always remain.

A day we'll never forget.   A time that will always be with us.



Friday, September 9, 2011

It's Been Awhile...

It's been awhile...

...since I've blogged or been consistently reading your blogs...

It's been a crazy week and a half...a friend passing away, a sudden trip out of state to her memorial service, and all the flurry of making trip arrangements for both the husband and I and my mother-in-law who graciously dropped everything at the last minute and flew out from California to take care of our butterscotch babies while we were gone.  

Not to mention all the emotions in between.

The weekend is coming and I'm hoping to get back into the blog groove again with writing my blogs (what possessed me to have more than one?) and reading yours, though life doesn't seem to be coming to a stop any time soon...

But I can't wait to connect with you all again...

I need it.


Monday, August 29, 2011

The Inevitable

I'm waiting for the inevitable.

I wish I wasn't.

I'm sort of partly in denial.

The inevitable in this case is that my good friend will pass away from cancer soon.  She's in her last days.  The doctor gave her two weeks.  Her body has already begun to shut down.

I keep praying and hoping for a miracle.

In the meantime, the inevitable looms before me.

I can barely process that fact.  Because of that, I can barely write about it.

My amazing, courageous, strong friend.  One of my best friends from the past when I lived in NYC.  One of the strongest women I know.

A friend who is like family to me, though I don't get to see her often.

Wish I could be there with her.

Instead I am here mired in the dailyness of my life, looking after my three young boys and dealing with household issues.

When I handle my cranky toddler, I think of her.  As important as it is for me to be with him, I feel like it's just as important for me to be with her and I silently detest the unfairness of it all.

These precious boys are the living but my friend is dying.  

 If we were closer, I could be there.

I honestly don't want to wait until the inevitable to be there because the Husband and I will be there -- celebrating her life, supporting and comforting her husband and 6 year old son...


Her husband reassured me that she knows (and he knows) that my husband and I are there with them in spirit.  That if we were closer, we would be there. 



But I want to be there before the inevitable happens.  To see her again.

I guess I am there in a way.  Through phonecalls and Facebook.

All my love, and support, and encouragment and prayers and comfort will get to her this way.

And that's just as good.


I have to remember that.




Update:  She passed away two days later on August 31st.  Such a strong, courageous woman who put up a good fight.  I leave tomorrow morning to go be with her family and celebrate her life.



Thursday, August 25, 2011

A Meeting...

Darkly handsome lab tech Nate meets heartbroken Jaya when he draws her blood. Captivated, he takes her home to Nashville where she heals.#blood

This piece was inspired by a prompt from Write on Edge that asks you to write your story as a tweet - 140 characters.


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Frantic

We had to leave immediately.  That was my first thought when the blood poured out of me - chunks of red fell to the floor, splattering on the bathroom wall.

We had to go to the hospital.  

I was nine months pregnant but this wasn't just a typical bloody show.  This hadn't happened with my other two pregnancies.

That was 10 minutes ago.  I put down the cordless phone, still anxiously heaving even after my conversation with the doctor.

My baby.  Are you alright? Please be alright.  God, I can't lose this baby.  I just can't.  

We were going.

I grabbed my bag and stepped out of the bedroom.  I caught my husband carrying the sleepy older boy from the bedroom towards the front door.

"Rhys is already in the car," he said quietly, referring to our middle son and stepped out the front door.

Butterflies flew frantically in my stomach.  Worry sat like lead on my shoulders.

I cut off all the lights and rushed out into the night, closing the door behind me.

*

Driving through the darkness of Boulder towards the hospital, I could see the outline of the mountains.  My husband driving fast but not too fast.  A still quietness like a blanket draped the car.  The two boys in the back of the car were groggy.

"Mommy, where we going?" the almost 5 year old asked sleepily.

There was a knot in my throat.  I couldn't speak.  I just held my hand to my belly and prayed.

"We're going to the hospital," my husband said.  "We're going to check on the baby."

Baby, please move.  Just move.  The words moved through my head repeatedly, urgently after I finished my prayer, as I pressed my hand against my belly.

"We're almost there," he stated quietly to me, tension surrounding each word.

Yes, almost there.

 Hold on, baby.  Hold on. 

*

19  hours later, I stared at my newborn son sleeping quietly in the hospital crib, oblivious to the racket his two older brothers were making.    My husband stood up from the chair he sat in and looked at me, nodding.

He addressed the boys.  "Okay, you guys ready to go home?"

The 2 and 1/2 year old was still rolling around frenetically on the queen size hospital bed as the 5 year old jumped up and down on the end.  I laid on one side, bracing myself.

Craziness.

I shook my head, then looked back at my husband.

This was going to be our life now.  Everywhere we went.  This crazy.

And then we realized we were already home.


This non-fiction piece was inspired by a prompt from The Red Dress Club  which asks to begin your story with the words “We had to leave immediately” and end it with “And then we realized we were already home.”








Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wrapped in Love



As you start in on another school year...my heart is in my throat.

What will the year bring?


My special kid.  My sensitive boy.

You can bring tears to my eyes in both joy and frustration.

A thrill to be around for some.  A bit high maintenance for others.

Endearing to those who are patient.

Misunderstood by those who don't quite get you - at times, even by friends and family who are close to you.

But your sweetness still shines through.

That pureness of heart.



Your maturity is becoming evident, too.  It's a process.

Your love and loyalty knows no limits which is why your hurt, when rejected, runs deep.

Talkative.  Inquisitive.  Mischievious.  Dramatic.  Particular.

Needing that constant reassurance.  Needing to know that you are doing good.  That you are loved.



Here's wishing you:

A year of new discoveries, amazing knowledge,  sincere, connected friendships.

Positive reactions, positive vibes, the strength and maturity to handle the negative.

The integrity to do what is right and not follow the crowd.



As you walk through this year, know too, that you are not alone.

Your Dad and I are there with you every step of the way.  There's no need to really fear.

Because you are wrapped in our love.

And whatever else happens this year, that fact won't change.




Friday, August 12, 2011

Most of All...


An entry from my journal...


I realize as I sit here at 11:47 in the morning that what I want most of all, deep in my bones...that what I'm going to pray for - I mean, in a get-down-on-my-knees pray for - when it comes to my 6 year old is for him to find two best friends this year who like him for who he is and can understand and appreciate him for it.  Two friends who are sincere.

My other prayer is for the 6 year old to become mellow in his reactions (it may take coping mechanisms) and more outwardly focused in his thoughts.  And of course, to take a stand for himself on his own when needed.

It's funny.  This fast that I'm on in the moment - just to prep for bloodwork - is now beginning to clear my mind, now that I've gone past a few intense hunger moments.  3 more hours to go.

This afternoon, after I get my blood drawn, we're headed to a school "meet-and-greet" where the 6 year old will meet his new teacher and see his new classroom.  1st grade here we come.  What a milestone.

I'm still not ready.


Okay, now it's fifteen minutes later and I am emotional - a reaction towards my 6 year old son. We had an exchange.  But I learned something from him, about him.  He does better with short conversations.  No long lectures.  I remember getting advice about that regarding boys - too many words and they just zone out.

Okay.  We both agree.  He'll focus on a person when that person is talking to him and I'll keep my 'lessons' short.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Crying Over Spilled Milk

I know the phrase: "There's no use crying over spilled milk."  I get it but I can't help but cry over spilled milk (both literally and figuratively) when it happens at least 3 times a day.

Not little spills. Huge spills.  Spills the size of a small pond appear constantly on my hardwood floors, followed by an "Uh oh" face from either one of my three boys.

Near the kitchen table.   In the middle of the family room. By the bathroom.   Mostly around the kitchen table.  Massive.  Across the table, along the chair, and on the floor.

The spills take on the form of milk or water and the occasional lemonade.  That last one instantly drives me to tears (of frustration mainly) because then you have the added element of sticky floors.

I. Hate. Sticky. Floors.

That means extra time cleaning -- extra time I don't have normally.

The cleaning.  Since the spills are unexpected, they usually come in the middle of another task I'm doing - like paying a bill or sending an email or working on a website or making dinner or putting clothes away...

The upside: I have a 17 month old who loves to wipe up things.  He's become my little helper.  I could use any help I can get.  Now to get the 6 year old and the 4 year old on board without having to twist their arms (figuratively) to do it.

Maybe then I wouldn't cry so much.


I'm pouring my heart out at Shell's - Things I Can't Say.






Monday, August 8, 2011

California Dreamin'

California.  


It was where it was at this summer for our Big Vacation.




Lots of fun in Grandma's Backyard in Bakersfield...



A Baseball Game on the Fourth of July in LA... 






Playing in the sand and chasing waves on the beaches of Santa Barbara...



And snoozing too, on the beach in Daddy's arms...





Not to mention, Visiting Time at the Mouse House 
(the boys' first time at Disneyland ever!)

Summer Fun. 


California. 





Linking up with Shell at Things I Can't Say at her Summer Fun Show Off.  Join in and possibly win some cool prizes, not to mention checking out some other blogs and other fun photos of summer.