mother, child, friend

Twenty five years ago, we met face to face for the very first time. That’s right folks, my Zoë Elizabeth is twenty five years old!

She steals my breath every time I regard her while basking in her warm, bright, shining face.

Twenty five years ago I was her mother and she was my child. Through the years we challenged one another in many ways. There were the times where I did find myself saying out loud, “I am not your friend, I am your mother.” I might have even screamed it through an abruptly slammed door. But that is part of being a parent. I won’t lie though, I wanted to be her friend. I really, really wanted to be her friend. I have always loved talking to her, laughing with her, playing with her. Yesterday she called me her friend and with her now at twenty five, we are at a place where we can be friends.

Always her mother, always my daughter, and now my friend.

Happy birthday cheers my darling daughter and friend!

 

thirty years in the making

Thirty years ago, I embarked an adventure. I was fearful of the changes that were to come, but I was more anxious believing all the declarations that there would be nothing but pain that would take me into this adventure; and that there was literally nothing that I could do about it.

Accept it, they told me. Submit to it, I was advised. Wisdom passed down to me by those who had been there and done that…and who shaped me into the person who believed that I had no strength, no power in anything.

And then, Hollie was born. Thirty years ago.

Thirty years ago, I began to see some of my deepest fears about myself and realized that I was so much stronger than them.

Birth is the sudden opening of a window, through which you look out upon a stupendous prospect. For what has happened? A miracle. You have exchanged nothing for the possibility of everything.

– William Macneile Dixon

From my nothing, or at least the nothing I was raised to believe to be true about myself came the possibility of everything. Thirty years ago today, it all began.

Thirty years ago today, it all began with her.

Here again I literally gasp out loud finding it hard to believe that I am the part of someone so beautiful in all the ways…in spite of the million mistakes I have made along the way of this adventure. But I am.

Thirty years ago began the adventure.

Happy birthday my dear, darling daughter. Thanks for making me Mom.

car time

When Bill’s father was alive, the two of them spent practically every weekend together working on cars…his car, his wife’s car, our cars, Bill’s sisters’ cars. An extended family our size, there was pretty much always a car that needed at least a little minor attention at any given time. Bill learned a lot about cars back then, especially Pintos.

He might have complained about all the time spent working on family cars, especially the ones that seemed to be used and abused the most. I doubt, though that he complained about the time spent with his Dad. I would imagine his Dad  felt the same…about the some of the cars they worked on and the time spent with his adult son virtually every weekend.

And now, years later, it’s the same kids…no matter how much he grouses in front of you.

That would be why I jumped ahead of him to spend an afternoon with one of our adult kids in a Jiffy Lube, watching some of yet another Harry Potter Marathon Weekend (when is there ever NOT a Harry Potter Movie Marathon Weekend???) and talking about life, work, Kanye, school and the importance of having a clean air filter.

Good times!

Truly, because hanging out with your grown-up kids is like visiting the best parts of yourself.

 

tell me again raising teen boys is so much easier

Because Mommy needed a lot of cheering up tonight because the furnace currently doesn’t work and it’s COLD here under The Big Top and she is mourning the end of what she thought was a wonderful friendship over the stupid of the last week and the stubborn rage of the offended party and aggravating bullshit of an afternoon conference call today…and this ridiculously stupid run-on sentence, my darling husband and favorite son took me out tonight for margaritas and Mexican food…good, authentic Mexican food. And just as I was finishing the first margarita, Daniel started to choke on the massive, huge, big-as-his-head burrito…like really choking.

OMG, he’s choking!

Always scary. Even scarier when the person choking has a paralyzed vocal cord

As Bill reaches over to help, Daniel is able to cough up the offending piece of food blocking his airway.

I’m okay! I’m okay!

Holding up his hand towards both of us, he makes it clear that he is okay.

He is okay…except for the fear in his eyes as he fights back crying.

Are you sure you’re okay, son?, I implore with the Mom-is-worried-and-scared-and-wants-to-hug-right-now tone.

He tries to look up as he barely whispers that he is okay but he can’t because then he really will lose his shit here in the restaurant.

Come on, Son. Let’s go shoot some pool. Bill pats him on the shoulder as they rise to head to the bar side of the restaurant where the pool table is. Mom can order another margarita while we play a game.

And today’s lesson: Sometimes Mom being concerned mom can only make it worse when you are a teenaged boy. Just let Dad  be dad and shoot some pool…as guys do…I guess.

So noted. I’ve got so much more to learn, I imagine.

teach them well

You know when you have those conversations with your child about respect for authority, for those who are called to Protect and Serve their community…and those who protect and serve this community 70 or more miles from their own homes because the pay scale and benefits are better? Every opportunity you have, you teach them that they are our helpers and they are here to protect and help us when we are in trouble and all we really need to remember is to always follow their instructions doing exactly what they tell us to do and we have nothing ever to worry about (as long as we have done nothing wrong) because they are here to protect us and serve us. They deserve our honor, our respect, our trust as they bravely serve us and protect us and we talk about this with our kids, all the time…

I know, Mom. What about my friends J and A and my friend R?

What about them?

Well, J and A are Mexican and R is Black and…well, on the news…

:::sigh:::

On the news…

So…

What then do you say?

I mean, you remind your son not all Cops and not all Brown people and not all Black people…

And you see your White Privilege right there  glaring at you because you are not having the same conversation with your teenaged son as J’s mom, or A’s mom or R’s mom is having right now.

Of course you are not.

But right now what we really need to worry about are professional athletes expressing their First Amendment Rights as American citizens in a way that in our humble opinion is wrong, wrong, wrong.

Teach them.

Teach them well.

They will teach you too.

I’m not going to answer any questions today and it’s no offense to you guys. I think the state of things in the world today is very interesting. I think you have players that are trying to take a stand and trying to be aware of social issue and try to make a stand an increase people’s awareness and put a spotlight on it and they’re being ignored. Whether they’re taking a knee or whether they’re locking arms, they’re trying to bring people together and unite them for a cause. I think the last couple days a couple more guys have gotten shot and killed in the middle of the street. More videos have come out of guys getting killed, and I think people are still missing the point. The reason these guys are kneeling, the reason we’re locking arms is to bring people together to make people aware that this is not right. It’s not right for people to get killed in the street.

I do a lot of community service. I go out there and try to help kids and try to encourage them to be better and to aspire to more. And when you tell a kid, “When you’re dealing with police, just put your hands up and comply with everything,” and there’s still a chance of them getting shot and no repercussions for anyone, that’s an unfortunate time to be living. It’s an unfortunate place to be in. There’s not a lot you can tell a kid. There’s not a lot you can try to inspire… a person when you say, “We need black fathers to be in the community to stay their for your kids,” but they’re getting killed in the street for nothing, for putting their hands on their cars. And I think that’s the unfortunate part, that’s the unfortunate place that we’re living in. And something needs to be done. And so when a guy takes a knee, you can ignore it. You can say he’s not being patriotic, he’s not honoring the flag. I’m doing none of those things. I’m saying, straight up, this is wrong and we need to do something. So thank you guys, have a blessed day.

~ Richard Sherman, cornerback, Seattle Seahawks