Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Life

It's funny how things go sometimes. Well, actually most of the time. You make plans. You think things ought to go a certain way, in a particular direction and then....they don't.

What's that saying? Man proposes, God disposes. Life is what happens when ...something something. Life does take strange turns and twists.

I was having that conversation today with a friend as we waited for her radiation appointment. We spoke of life, of parental expectations, of cruelty, change, life altering events, disappointments..... life. Life. Just...life. We spoke of parents that didn't accept or embrace the choices their children have made. How it causes pain, emotional, physical and all around creates plain ole stinky feelings. That it takes time to get over those things. To be all right with the person YOU are, the choices you've made, and the life you live.

She spoke of things she'd like to do, but was so very tired from chemo and radiation. I tried mostly to just listen, although I did my fair share of sharing. I hope I listened more than I shared. Sometimes I know I'm not great at the art of listening instead of waiting for my chance to share. I hope I'm getting better at that.

She doesn't have children, so I did share how it felt to me at various times in raising my babies. How it felt to have parental expectations.

The desire to keep them from the railroad tracks of life. To warn them of the oncoming trains that we, as parents, can plainly see coming. We beg them to get off the tracks. Can't you see the train? Hear that whistle? Don't you feel the ground shaking? Oh...please run, get away from there. It's dangerous and..... The train comes and you are forced to watch. It's not your place to pick them up and carry them from the tracks as you did when they were little. They are adults now, so you watch. You grieve their sorrows, feel their pain.

And then, after a bit you make peace with the fact that you did the best you could. That their choices are their choices, not yours. Their lives, not yours. You wait beside the tracks, but you don't watch any longer. You still love, oh how you love, but you have freed yourself from their pain because it is not your pain. It's their pain. You don't own it. They do.

Ah life. What a cruel teacher you are...

The unimaginable joy I had with my babies is no longer. It's grown, changed, evolved and morphed into something else entirely. I can no longer fix an owie with a kiss and a hug and a snuggle. My magic powers have been taken from me by time.

But one thing has not changed...and that is my heart. I love them, all four of them, with everything that I am. I always will. And though I no longer stand watch on the train tracks, I hope they each know that I will stand with them after the train has passed.

Thursday, May 08, 2014

You Made Me a Mom

This is the 12th Mother's Day without my mom. I miss her very much and as most children, I probably didn't appreciate her and the sacrifices she made for her children as much as I should have while she was here on this earth. I always treated her with respect, she knew I loved her and I cared for her in the last few months of her life. I've learned a lot about mother hood since her death.

This is a picture of her holding my last baby. She held Ashley Rose before I did, because I'd had a crash c-section to save Ashley's life. I never actually saw my baby for two days. Mom never let me forget that she held her first. It's not a great picture of my mom because she'd been crying an awful lot that night, not knowing if the baby or I would survive.



My mom was and is beautiful.



She taught ME how to a be mom. But the baby below is the one who made me a mom for the very first time. Stephanie Ann.



You were the light and the life in my world. My day, my night, my forever. My heart grew in size the moment I saw you. I've never been the same since that day in January 1989. Carol Lynn Pearson put it best in her poem, My Day Old Child.

"My day old child"

My day old child in my arms
with my lips against his ear
I whispered strongly "How I wish,
I wish that you could hear,

"I've a hundred wonderful things to say
(A tiny cough and nod)
Hurry, hurry, hurry and grow
so I can tell you about God."

My day old baby's mouth was still
and my words only tickled his ear,
but a kind of light passed through his eyes,
and I saw this thought appear,

"How I wish I had a voice and words,
I've a hundred things to say,
Before I forget, I'd tell you of God,
I left Him yesterday."


So fresh from heaven. Perfect, miraculous and the most amazing being I'd ever had the honor of loving day and night.

Carol Lynn Pearson also spoke the words from my heart in her poem,

Mother To Child

Look --
Your little fist
Fits mine
Like the pit
In a plum.

One day
And one size,
These two hands will
Clasp companionably.

Help me, child
Forgive me
When I fail you.
I'm your mother,
True,
But in the end
Merely an older equal
Doing her faltering best
For a dear
Small friend.



Thank you for being my baby girl. For allowing me the experience to be a mom for the first time. Now that you are mom to Enzo, I hope you know that all the feelings you have running through you for your young son, were also coursing through my heart when I had you. My baby girl.

Happy first Mother's Day, baby girl. I love you.

Tuesday, May 06, 2014

Cats. Because.

This is our cat Bobo. Yes, I'm aware that Bobo means 'stupid' in Spanish. Thankfully, Bobo does not speak Spanish.

This is another shot of our beloved Bobo. My dear husband is his human. Bobo sleeps with him each night, curled into the crook of his arm. When Lance goes to work. Bobo comes and sleeps ON TOP OF ME. Apparently I make a comfortable pillow.


This is Tubby, or Professor Tubbington. He is fluffy and very vocal. He talks and chitters and it's adorable. He also races through the house all night, which is somewhat less adorable. Look at the fluffy!!!


This is my Baby Twitch. Sadly, we lost our Titchy. We think the coyotes got him and I may be the only one in the house with a broken heart over his loss. He did not endear himself to the other members of the family because he had toileting issues---and he peed on each girls bed. So outside he went and now....he's gone. I've looked and called shelters and the only thing I can think is that coyotes or possibly racoons got him. He was extremely skittish and would not ever go near another human being while outside. I love him. And I miss him. A lot. I was HIS human. And he was my baby.

Friday, May 02, 2014

Spring Break in Arizona

Catchy title, eh?

Yeah, ok. Not really.

We spent the week in Tucson, with a day trip here. To Sedona. Magical and wonderful and oh so breathtakingly beautiful. Lance and I hiked up a few trails and I filled our new camera with desert images. It was an amazing time.


The number of large cacti....oh the number! Huge and spikey and alien to those of us with webbed-feet from living in the Land of the Green and the Rain. Seattle does not prepare you for dry desert air, or the prevalence of the brown, relived only by cactus.



Birds carve holes in these giants and build their nests. I'm not sure I saw one cactus that had not suffered some damage. But to me it is beautiful damage and only added to the joy.


So many varieties of spikey danger. This is a beautiful specimen. I shant bore you with the entire 850 photographs we took while in Arizona.


We fully intend to return. Soon.