Sunday, October 26, 2008

Rebecca stole it from someone else's I stole it from hers!
a little cyber-sharing!

One of the reasons Halloween is not my favorite holiday...

Me (two months ago): Katie, what do you want to be for Halloween?

Katie: A butterfly!

Me (one month ago): Katie, do you still want to be a butterfly for Halloween?

Katie: Yes! A butterfly!

Me (two weeks ago): Katie, you can't wear the butterfly wings until Halloween.

Katie: I can hardly wait!

Me (last night, 1 hour before the Halloween party): Are you ready to put on your Butterfly costume?

Katie: I don't want to be a butterfly! I want to be a witch...

Me: @$#&^!*

Thursday, October 9, 2008


My oldest is eight years old today. Eight. I have an eight year old son. If I keep saying it, maybe it will be real. I knew this day would come. I’ve known it since the day he was born. But … here it is. Wow. That was fast.

I remember the day he was born—well, sort of. I’d been in the hospital for two and half days and was beginning to wonder if he’d ever get out! I think God lets women be pregnant for nine grueling months to make them desperate to have possession of their bodies again. Labor doesn't seems so daunting when that's the prize. Anyway...the day went on and on and on and all I could think about was how I didn’t get to eat. I saw the chocolate cake everyone else had with dinner. Did I get any? No. All I had was a dripping I.V. and a little button that delivered epidural relief whenever I wanted it. By late that evening I was coasting along in a drug induced haze. I was so relaxed, the chocolate cake ceased to matter. I sat there in a very Zen like state. Want me to push? Ok. Want me to turn on my side? Shuuuuure. If you like I’ll even bark like a dog or sing Queen at the top of my lungs. Then all of a sudden, monitors started beeping and my doctor disappeared. A few seconds passed and the room exploded into action. Nurses, more than I’d seen since I'd started my incarceration in Labor and Delivery were whirling around me, their scrubs creating a sort of kaleidoscope effect. Now there were two doctors. One of them said to me, “You win!” Really? What did I win? Some chocolate cake? Everyone was moving fast but saying nothing to me. I calmly asked, “So, am I having a c-section?” No response. Next time I sat up a little and raised my hand, “Excuse me, AM I HAVING A C-SECTION?” Evidently the large pregnant lady on the bed with messy hair and no make-up was invisible. I’d expended all my energy just trying to sit up. I couldn’t feel my legs. Who cared. I laid back and relaxed and was whisked into surgery. Yeah…I’m having a c-section. Post-op, I have some very unflattering video coverage of me laying in my sterile hospital bed, slacked mouthed and drooling. Baby? What baby? I didn’t regain consciousness until the next morning. But when I did, oh my! There was this absolutely gorgeous baby boy waiting for me, a warm bundle cocooned in flannel and smelling new. I was instantly in love...with this little life.

Eight years have passed. I'm not sure what I did with all that time. I spent a lot of it worrying unnecessarily. That's what moms do. But it's been a ride watching him learn and grow...learning to let go of him by degrees. I hope as time continues to pass that he won't question how much he is loved in our home. I hope we can infuse his life with as much joy and adventure as he has brought into ours.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

"There is one friend in the life of each of us who seems not a separate person, however dear and beloved, but an expansion, an interpretation, of one's self, the very meaning of one's soul." Edith Wharton

Thanks to Joan for this quote. I've relected on it quite a bit this past week. I am blessed to have three such people in my life.

Carrie has been, of late, a disembodied anchor to my soul (owing to the magic of electronic communication). She is honesty on legs. She listens without judgement. She is kind. She is wise. And she is able to sooth my lagging spirits with amazingly few words.

Michelle is another kindred spirit who in times of distress, plants her feet firmly on the ground and volunteers her own strength to supplement mine. We share the same tendency to obsess over the topic du jour and is a comrade in all things French.

Laura J. is difficult to summarize. For years I've recognized her as another part of myself. We've often joked about the possibility that we might have been separated at birth. We are very similar but different enough that we don't get on each others nerves. She is non-judgemental, mostly because in her life's experiences she has, "been there...done that."

I feel fortunate indeed...

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Birthday Letters...

I am reading Birthday Letters by Ted Hughes. I am not typically a reader of poetry (I do love Shakespeare and Yeats though), but I am finding this book completely amazing and evocative. I suppose it's a sort of rebuttal for the Plath-ivists (who have chiseled the name "Hughes" off of Sylvia's headstone so many times that it is now engraved in bronze) out there . It's been years since I've read Plath but I am finding Ted Hughes' account of their marriage fascinating. So far my favorite poem is Ouija and if you will forgive me, I'll copy some of it here.

More often serious. Once, as we bent there, I asked:
'Shall we be famous?' and you snatched your hand upwards
As if something had grabbed it from under.
Your tears flashed, your face was contorted,
Your voice cracked, it was thunder and flash together:
'And give yourself to the glare? Is that what you want?
Why should you want to be famous?
Don't you see - fame will ruin everything.'
I was stunned. I thought I had joined
Your association of ambition
To please you and your mother,
To fulfil your mother's ambition
That we be ambitious. Otherwise
I'd be fishing off a rock
In Western Australia. So it seemed suddenly. You wept,
You wouldn't go on with Ouija. Nothing
I could think of could explain
Your shock and crying. Only
Maybe you'd picked up a whisper that I could not,
Before our glass could stir, some still small voice:
'Fame will come. Fame especially for you.
Fame cannot be avoided. And when it comes
You will have paid for it with your happiness,
Your husband and your life.'

See what I mean?