Thursday, April 30, 2009

Thursday This...Thursday That

Our hometown boy, Danny, is still going strong on AI! I’ll be happy if he wins because then I know for sure that the reunion tour will come to our town. Last year they passed us up. I was sad to see Matt sent home last night. I really like him, and Funny Valentine is one of my best songs ever. I was hoping Allison was voted off, because she’s young and a bit annoying. Nough said. The thing is that every one in the top 5 has talent this season. I would buy an album any of them put out except maybe Allison’s, but I would burn it if someone else bought it. Nough said.

I am thankful, finally, for some answers on Lost. I was getting discouraged because each new episode was causing me even more confusion...there was no clarity. I considered (albeit just for a moment) giving up because I was well…Lost. Nough said.

We have been trampoline shopping. We always said. “No trampoline! Not ever! End of discussion!” My friend who is an ER doc said that it is the #1 culprit that sends kids to his hell hole. Nough said. Then I changed my mind because my kids are getting older and ever so much more responsible...really! Now that I have convinced my hubby to change his mind too, I changed my mind back. This is supposed to be his 1st communion gift. Not appropriate you say? Well, what if we tell him every time he gets on it; he has to say a prayer ... a prayer that he doesn’t end up in the ER!?!? How many bibles and prayer books can a boy receive? Nough said.

So 1st communion is coming up this weekend, but my son is more excited for his first little league game of the season tomorrow, and not at all happy that he has to miss his game Sunday (or let me tame his fierce mane with a little gel and put a leash...I mean, a tie around his neck) because of said once in a lifetime sacrament. His coach called last night and actually was questioning if it was HIS 1st communion and when the service was as if he could receive the body and blood of Christ and then make it in time for the 7th inning stretch (there are only 6 innings in little league). I think we are taking little league a bit too seriously. T Bone is way serious too, though. Last summer he passed up a trip to Colorado because he would have missed the start of his tourney. His exact words spoken with candid sincerity were, “Mom, my team needs me.” They did go on to win the championship and he did make the All Star team so he has a bit of a reputation to live up to. Nough said.

I am freaking out just a little because in addition to the recent news that my one and only brother will be getting married next spring in either South Carolina, Bermuda or London, I have also just found out that 2 of my 5 cousins (note small family) are also getting married within the next year. One is planning a wedding in the middle of prime ski season in affordable Vail, and the other is planning to wed in Cape Cod in you guessed it…the height and heat of the summer when all of New England flocks to the shore! Oh wait…it gets even better. You see we have also promised our kids a trip to Disney this fall. While we will have to finally find that elusive money tree hiding in our backyard, I wouldn't dream of missing any one of these joyous occasions for these special people in my life. Experiences are worth much more than money! Nough said!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

April Showers

Do bring May flowers. I am reminding myself of this as there is a line of turbulent thunderstorms passing through. These ominous skies have taken yesterday's 85 degree weather and caused me to cancel our morning hike. Now I'm listening to the booms and rolls compete with SpongeBob in the other room. I think this will be a jammie day for me and my girl. I do love a good spring storm and I also am very fond of a lazy Saturday. The boys are away for a father/son weekend. Today life is good.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Is it 5:00 yet?

Today is going to be a very long day. I slept terribly last night, or maybe I didn't sleep at all! I am blaming it on my dreams. I have always been a dreamer and often been prone to crazy dreams. In college, I started lucid dreaming. In lucid dreams, you think you are really awake and that you are going out of your mind. That is beyond crazy, and it lead me to become very familiar with Salvador Dali, a complete wacko. Lately when I dream, I am aware that I am dreaming and my mind races and races out of control as I try to process all my subliminal thoughts and finish conversations with people I can no longer communicate with conventionally. It is like working out...not resting. Then, of course, I start to sleep like a baby just before it is time to get up! And then I wonder why I have been so depleted lately.

All I can say is that it is a good thing that I drink coffee...strong coffee!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Monday, Monday

It's a gloomy, gray morning. Damp. Dark. Dank. It personifies my mood. My kids pulled the covers over their heads, turned away from me and groaned: they were resistant to get up out of their warm beds to face their first day back to school after "spring" break. I was relieved to be back to the comfortable, predictable routine after 10 days off, but I kept that relief under wraps. I felt guilty for feeling that I was winning my freedom as they mourned the loss of their's for the next 8 1/2 weeks until summer vacation. The thing is...I felt like doing absolutely nothing this past! That just really was not an option and, therefore, the week felt very long and extremely laborious.

Saturday was glorious. The warmth and sunshine preformed wonders on my disposition as did welcoming my kids home after a couple of days enjoyed at "Camp Grandpa." The icing on the cake was the impromptu call from my soul sister suggesting a spontaneous bbq. It really was just what I needed. The kids (5 of whom are 8 and under and the other 2 fall in the 40 and older group) played baseball, they jumped in the bounce house, made messy sand creations and all the while we talked without coming up for air. Whenever we get talking, we seldom finish a single conversation because there is always so much ground to cover, feelings to share, stories to tell. We celebrate a true oral tradition. We do talk every couple days and are still are never at a loss for words. I felt energized.

Then Sunday it was rainy and cold once again. I woke up dragging...not refreshed, and after I opened my email, it was downhill the rest of the day. I found a message from my Mom's brother with regard to my Grandmother's deteriorating condition. My Grandma, who turned 91 last month, is not likely to see the May flowers. I was completely overcome with palpable grief when I saw the words in black and white. It certainly surprised me as this news has been a long time coming. It was no reaction was such a surprise though. Immediately, I regretted my decision to forgo Sunday mass.

Several years ago, the whole family headed out West to celebrate Grandma Doe's 85th birthday. It was a nice visit and the lady of honor was in her element as the celebrated center of attention. I left there with a feeling of absolute certainty that I would not see her again in this world. When I said, "goodbye," I was saying farewell for good.

I was wrong. I've been back twice. The first time so she could meet my son and then a second time to lend my Mom support. My Grandma was no longer living on her own when we made our last visit, she had long bouts of confusion and she was weak and frail. Hospice took over while we were there and we once again said our "goodbyes." I expected a call any day. It's been two years and counting. She is their longest living hospice patient...Grandma Doe the legend.

I never thought that my frail Grandma who was so ready to go would outlive my Mom - a woman who was in no way ready to leave. Sometimes it's painfully true...Only the Good Die Young. The truth is that my Grandma was a selfish and narcissistic woman. Proud and vain and cold and distant beyond the miles that separated us for all of my life. While she was a decent absentee Grandma, she was not a nurturing or supportive mother to my Mom. With each year, I came to see through her fancy gifts and I came to realize the truth of her fly by night visits. The hurt in my Mother's heart over the emptiness of their relationship...over not 'having" her mother...was all too clear. I always "had" my Mom...I still "have" her.

When my Mom died, I wasn't the only one to question aloud - "Why her?" Even as I know that it doesn't work this way, the words formed on my lips and I wanted an answer. Yet I know who makes this choice, I accept it is not tit for tat, I celebrate that one life is not more valuable than another. I am ashamed to admit that I have more or less cut off communications with my last living grandparent. I have not entertained a visit, I don't call, I seldom write and only send random pictures. Random pictures from myself, my cousins, my mother that I was surprised to find stored for safe keeping the last time I was there. They were tucked beside her bundle of old love letters from her second husband, a man she chose to move clear across the country for only months after her teenage children tragically lost their Mom's hero...a true legend. I know my Grandma loved her second husband, and he loved her, but it is almost as if they were so consumed with one another that there wasn't room for any one else - not children, not grandchildren.

This is the reason she is spending her last days alone thousands of miles from family with a stack of of people she doesn't even know... and love letters from a man long ago passed on.

It is tragically sad and I wish it were different. I wish I could be by my Grandma's side. I cherish the relationship my Mom and I shared. I am eternally grateful that she refused to let history repeat itself and the only solace in her untimely death aside to the end of her suffer ring and the promise of His mercy and eternal life, was her reunion with her father...the person who taught her how to love.

I have forgiven my Grandma for the way she hurt my Mom over and over again. Today I am struggling myself with really saying "goodbye" to someone who cannot hear or understand what I have to say. She no longer has a phone, she cannot read, and I think she has at least one foot in the next life. Then again it's always just "goodbye" for now, and I have no doubt that we'll pick up where we left off when we meet again in the world where all wrongs are made right and then laid to rest.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

I have no words this week. It doesn't happen to me often...being at a complete loss for words, that is...but I truly do not know how to express my thoughts and feelings in writing right now. I have hit another rough patch.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Meditative Monday

Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than standing in your garage makes you a car.

Yesterday, Palm Sunday, I sat in church and even before Father B. implored us to make this holy week, the holiest week of our Catholic faith, different than every other, it already was. I listened to the Passion and I wept at His sacrifice for me. I felt so humbled, so thankful, so unworthy. This week I am working on showing a loving concern for others in His likeness.

That is much easier said than done…mind you. It is easy to know what is the Christlike action to take (mind), but it is more of a challenge to let the manifestation stem from within my heart (body) to bring the inner peace and unity with others that I seek (soul).

At the center of my personal struggle is forgiveness. I am not particularly adept at making, or more like accepting...amends. I am able to let go of the anger I feel at being slighted and mistreated after time passes, but what I do is forget. I do not forgive. I put my walls up and I walk away rarely looking back. It works for me, yet I know this is not what Jesus did when wronged by acts far more appalling.

I keep reminding myself that I am a work in progress. I am clay. I know I will never be perfect, but I will never give up trying to be a better person because of the incredible gift He has given me.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009