Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Holding Hands Under the Blankets

 When we bought our king sized bed so many years ago I only thought of me and having space to sleep. The time has passed so fast and the space in that bed has encompassed so much.  Between us there have been cats and dogs, sick kids, well kids, piles of laundry, discarded magazines and iPads and TV remotes. No matter what ended up there between us there is always enough space, in the dark, for our hands to find each other and our fingers to intertwine.  There have been other things between us too. Unkind words, selfishness and hurt feelings to name a few. But again our hearts always manage to move through that tight angry space and find each other. Still all these years later no space is too small and no pile of laundry too high for us to remember where we have belonged all along. Together. 

Monday, April 15, 2013

{Gratitude Lately} :a reminder to me:

Lately I have been grateful for birds chirping before the sun rises and sweet smelling spring flowers.

For healthy feet that allow me to run fast {or walk away slow} and
learning who to count on and how to count more on me.

 For hot tea and grandma sweaters to warm my body and wake my mind. 

For remembering how reading feeds my soul and ignites my imagination.

For my furry friends who ask only for soft pats and butterfly kisses and human friends who give more than they take.

For humor that keeps my raft afloat and for my three sass monsters that energize my spirit.

What have you been grateful for lately?
Here is to pouring enough gratitude into the glass to make it half full!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Twilight Zone

Life with kids is full of firsts. As parents we wait for every one of them. First steps, riding a two wheeler, first day of school, first school dance... all documented by pictures and memory books. Proud moments in our parenting progression. Smiling faces and encouraging words. The firsts we use to one up the Joneses.

Then there are the other firsts. The ones in the alternate universe of firsts. We as parents pretend this universe doesn't exist.  We pretend these firsts don't happen at all. The first time our kid gets melt-into-the-floor-embarrassed at school. The first kiss. The first sip of alcohol and the first speeding ticket. The firsts we don't witness or celebrate. Those firsts aren't main stream. They aren't photographed. They matter more though. Those alternate universe firsts...they shaped us...they shape them. Part of growing up is learning to navigate all these first without those camera flashes and cheering. To revel in the reactions and decisions made alone, out of the spotlight. Part of being a parent is letting go enough for our kids to fall a little bit into that alternate universe.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Seasons Change

It's the subtle changes that creep in that are the hardest for me. Those big slap in the face changes.. well those suck horribly in their own way. They are shocking and immediately cause a physical reaction. They have to be addressed head on.  Acknowledged and accepted. But the soft whispering changes that drift in over days and weeks and months those are the worst. The ones you don't see until they have happened. The ones that begin so quietly and spread as slowly as a shadow fading  during sunset.

Change helps you grow they say. I want to believe that. But I'm not sure I do.  My heart doesn't want to adapt to the loss of what used to be and embrace what is now. It is like accepting is somehow discounting that the past is real.  I liked the flowers and the chocolate like any girl does. But I loved  the talking for hours and the naming our nonexistent children and the conquer the world together because no one else matters feeling.

The beginning is easy. It is all ahead of you . Excitement and the unknown.  The hard part comes later when the changes have snuck in between the years.  In between each other. They knock you out of balance and leave you looking up for answers. They sap your energy and your ability to play I-am-rubber-you-are-glue with indifference. Those changes that seep in every little crevice and tiny crack take over the relationship like some sort of exorcist.
Reaching deep to find the power to step past. Learning to find a way to remember and recapture. Finding the next hill on the coaster to climb. My plan. My hope. My heart.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Rocked to the Core

These kinds of things make me shudder and then weep. They make me yearn for innocence and hope even when there doesn't seem to be any.  My kids are looking to me for guidance and assurance and to tell the truth I am having to reach deep down to find it. But the choice isn't mine. I am their mom so it is my job.

They need to know how many heroic people that were there that day.Teachers. Police and fireman. Clergy. The compassion and love shown. The good. Placing the emphasis on that makes it less easy to be sucked into the evil.  Less scary to feel secure. Allowing them to bypass the adult issues being thrown at them and help them remain the children that they still are.

Good propagates good. Lead by example. Love others. Give time to less fortunate. Simply make someone else happy. Spend time together making each other laugh. Don't let evil overshadow the good in this world.  Help to create adults with less cynicism and more optimism. 

Live with intention. Love with your whole heart. Not because of such horrific tragedies but despite them. 

Thursday, December 13, 2012

We are All Just a Bunch of Misfits

This time of year brings about certain imperfections. Especially those that we see within our selves. Its like a scene from a  Christmas movie when a character is standing out in the snowy cold peaking in the window at a picturesque scene. Everyone sitting by the fire drinking cocoa and singing carols and linking arms. No cares in the world. White picket fence happiness. While you are standing there all the while shivering, teeth chattering. Sad and misfit. Nothing close to perfection. 

When they draw the curtains inside that magical heart warming scene the real life starts. The kids squabble and someone knocks over the cocoa. Smoke overflows from the fire and the alarm screeches. Regular everyday problems.  But you don't see them. 

The family of Barbies you see at the school choir concert or shopping together at the mall is really just the same as you. The struggling misfit toy. The one trying so hard to be the square peg that fits into the round hole. No matter the consequence.  

Everyone has flaws. Some are on the outside for everyone to see. Others are inside hiding from the world. Whatever they are they make us real people. Human beings who need to shout and cry and be mad and sad sometimes. We aren't plastic, produced in bulk without emotion or flaws. The grass is never really greener on the other side of the fence. It is actually equally as brown.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Choose Joy

Everyone falls. The trick is being able to get up, brush yourself off and keep going forward. Its not easy to push aside those things that make you stumble. It is even harder to be able to smile while pushing them aside.  Its easy to get caught up in the bad stuff. That stuff that weighs you down and makes you into a miserable human. Someone who can't find it in themselves to see the happiness. The hard part is choosing to see the joy.

Watching a mom today at the store I saw it. Her little girl was carrying a box of cookies and trailing behind her. She was rushing ahead looking at her watch and mumbling about being late. The little girl lost her tight grasp on the box and it bounced to the floor. The mom looked back and for just a moment her face tightened but almost immediately melted into a smile and she began to giggle.  She scooped her daughter up and told her they would have cookie pieces in milk and it would be perfect and fun. She saw joy.

Things unravel every day. Sometimes it is on a small scale like the cookies falling and sometimes it is on a huge world record spool of yarn scale. Life is absurdly hard but letting it bring you down is a choice. Being happy is just a temporary emotion but finding actual joy is different. Joy is a state of being that comes from inner contentment. It is long lasting and can affect everything you do and say...really everything you are. 

Choosing the path that leads to the most joy might not lead to money or recognition. But finding joy brings a sigh of relief to your spirit. It lets you find the laughter within the tears and move a step beyond happiness. Joy isn't a fake smile plastered on your face but it is living real and awake and enjoying small moments in life with gratitude and love. Choose joy today and tomorrow and the day after that. Your happiness depends on it.