Tuesday, August 5, 2014
almost 6yo-"Mommy what are they doing?"
Mommy-"Uuummm...wrestling in the shower!'
almost 6yo-"That better not be the Daddy's butt!"
Mommy-"It's not honey, it's the Mommy's."
almost 6yo-"Okay, pppfffeeeeyyyyyeeeeewwww!"(what she adorably still says instead of pschew!)
Then after cleaning all day, in the course of Hubbie the Dearest getting home, eating dinner, and leaving for the mart of Wals, our house turned into a three ringed circus.
We were almost out of toilet paper, both Lil Punkin Doo and I are getting over a bout of the icky tum tums, and we had Mexican for dinner. We both run for the bathroom at exactly the same moment. Me edging her out, but only because she offered to step aside and let dear old mom go first. I just turned forty you know? I am looking forward to my golden cougar age, and she has me already at geriatric! Stinking kids! Or in this case, stinking mommy!
So I proceeded to blow up the bathroom, and use the last of the tissues. All the while being engaged in semi-meaningful five year old conversation. And pay attention because there will be a quiz.
You know because we can never be that family that buys a shitload(pun intended) of toilet paper in advance of the impending PooPocalype. We are that family that uses every last slip of toilet paper, tissue, baby wipee, and Sears catalog down to the last drop you know? So as I flush and the child rings in her turn, I dropped the bomb on her, baby. Yes that's right, I did. Mommy used the last of it. I advised her that dear old dad would be back in a few minutes, to take her time.
So I flipped my britches off, meaning to put on my jammies, bypassed the bedroom, and hurried straight to the kitchen to do the dishes before HTD returned. Because oh, you know, Mom brain. Flitting from one thing to the next, and then the next , and so on. Not you too? Just me? Mkay.
So as I am doing dishes I realize my Hub always told me it would be sexeh if I did the dishes naked. So I decided that half naked counts! So as I am elbow deep in bubbles, a la' commando from the waist down, thinking sexeh thoughts for hubbie's return, that is when it begins.
The almost 6yo starts singing opera style at the top of her lungs, and she has some major big lungs people! It is a cross between Frozen songs and Rapunzel, with a touch of Ariel and Under the Sea thrown in for good measure. And then the Fidget thing starts singing too. But a totally different song. And then the Furby Boom wakes up. So there is madness going on in our house, This goes on for about twenty minutes, because my youngest child is like her father, and did not take reading material or a tablet to potty with her so as to speed the PooMageddon along, but was accompanied by LalaLoopsies. So as I go to check on her, she wants me to cop a squat in front of her and play dollies while we wait. Ah, no thanks, but thanks. It stinks in here.
I furiously search for her some tissues in my purse, and lucked out, a pocket pack. Then began the begging, "Please wipe me Mommy!!!" Another big no! And a big girl lecture. So I come back to resume the dishes, I finally put on my jammies on the way, and finish up. Next up is flushing so as not to stop up the toilet! Don't forget to tune in next time!
Hope you enjoyed! Muah!
Friday, August 1, 2014
There will be no call at 11:29am, telling me happy birthday from my mother. My grandmother did not remember my birthday for the first time, when I called her today, as she is slowly and steadily declining, as she approaches ninety, and there will be no big celebratory party for me tonight.
As I have been through the rounds of my closest friends and acquaintances fortieths, I have found that either your mother plans your big party, or you do it yourself. I opted out of the big celebratory birthday party, and have opted for quiet dinners and lunches with those friends and family that are still close to and mean the most to me.
Every major milestone birthday I have ever had, I had my mother with me. This is the first one without her. I just want to ask her how she felt when she turned forty. From the time I was little, I always teased her about being almost fifty. As I got older, she returned the favor by teasing me that I was almost forty, from the time I turned thirty. How I wish she was around today to tease me about being old.
I woke up this morning to my almost 6yo, lil punkin doo, making me waffles with peanut butter, bananas and strawberries. I opened her present that she handmade for me. I then videotaped her singing of Happy Birthday to me. There is nothing more precious than time with her because I know that these times are numbered and happen once in a lifetime. Like one of my mommas favorite songs states, precious memories. The Barbara Streisand version....
Hubbie the dearest and my lil punkin doo have cooked up a relaxed, precious memories filled day, and then HTD is sweeping me out of town to an undisclosed location for the weekend. A quiet us weekend, filled with more precious memories. Happy interspersed with sadness.
I am not stressing, freaking out or partying like I was twenty one again for my fortieth birthday. I am proud of the strong, battle scarred woman who has made it to forty without regret. I have made it through the good, the bad and the ugly and I am still standing. I have been well off, I have been broke, I have been whole and I have been broken, I have had a child, lost a child, lost a mother, and survived. I have survived a grandmother like my second mother, moving five hours away and two teenagers. I have been my mothers caregiver, and watched her deteriorate, and ultimately had to step up and try to fill her shoes upon her passing. I have fulfilled my promises to not let my baby forget her precious GranGran, and to take care of my father after my mother left him in my care. I have survived being disowned by my brother and his family, only to embrace my three half siblings and biologic father. I have survived the IRS, lawsuits, losing jobs, changing jobs, my daughter starting school, her first girlfriends betrayal, and job relocation and moving frequently. I survived a broken leg, a state away from anyone we knew, no babysitters or helpers, or family anywhere close. I am a survivor. One with many precious memories.
I celebrate wonderful, fabulous me today. I am a happy go lucky gal with a glass half full attitude. I am very blessed with family and friends. I look for the silver lining and make the best out of every situation. I have a wicked sense of humor, would give you the shirt off my back if you needed it, and am successfully filling my mothers shoes. I am a mother, lover, wife, friend, daughter, granddaughter, niece, daughter in law, granddaughter in law, swim mom, dance mom, music mom, homeroom helper, good girl, bad girl, ornery girl, and one heck of a woman to know and love. I am a lady first and foremost, and will always have a smile for you or any stranger on the street.
Today, as I am turning forty, I love me. Exactly the way I am. I am proud of me for all that I have accomplished and overcome. I am happy to have made it this far! I am proud of my forty years and all the precious memories and people that the last forty years have contained. I choose to measure myself by my strength, my character, and not the size of my waistline. That was how I was raised.
So officially I am at the top of the hill! Today I will celebrate me, with a few tears of rememberance and a little celebrating. Here's to the next forty! Oh and I am definitely looking forward to this cougar thing! Wink! I still got it!
Friday, July 18, 2014
The few, the proud, the Marines. I have heard it a million times, and so have you. I have had friends that were Marines, dated a Marine for a heartbeat, and have always fully supported all branches of our military. But Marines are my favorite. Navy boys are right up there with them, talked to a few of them as well in my younger years. In the end, the USMC Summer Dress Uniform wins hands down as the single hottest uniform on the planet! Nothing like a man who lays down his very life for our country, defends our freedom, is a trained, well oiled machine, is that awesome with guns, and looks like that when they attend formal occasions! Pschew!
Now I am a very happily married gal, and Hubbie the Dearest thinks my fascination is adorable. He knows that I am his through and through. I think it is cute that he likes to look at pretty women and bikinis. We are that comfortable in our relationship, and both appreciate beauty, and often together.
With that being said, the Marines are calling and I must go. Tomorrow evening, we will find ourselves at a wedding smack dab in the middle of the largest military installation on the east coast, Camp Lejune, in North Carolina. At a USMC wedding. His sister will be marrying her marine.
If anyone needs me, I will be the redhead in a sundress with her family, on the brides side, drooling, in a diaper, looking a little glazed over. I will be in heaven! I usually cry at weddings, but I have a feeling that tomorrow, I will have to be carried out of there! I am also a chatty cathy type, but again, tomorrow I fear I will be in a red, white, black and blue induced coma! I will be the silent one with her legs crossed, trying to color with her 5yo at the kiddie table. Trying my damndest to keep my eyes on that picture I will be so fervently trying to color with my daughter, to keep her from asking why I am glazed and drooling again! Thank Goodness HTD will be there to drag me around and poke me when speaking is necessary! ERMAGERD!
If there is a receiving line....oh dear! Shaking hands with all those beautiful creatures, I will either have a heart attack, trip from staring too long, or not let go. I will be the next Melissa McCarthy character in her next upcoming film, 'How to Survive a Marine Wedding'! Thank goodness I will have my hubbie's hand to hold on one side, and my 5yo's on the other!
And I have no idea if there is dancing! Please God, hear my prayer, let there be no dancing! I am letting you know up front, there will be no controlling my hips when in a room full of USMC testosterone in dress uniforms. Perfect specimans that will be perfectly behaved in those white pants! Oh the white pants, just....pschew the white pants, and those jaw lines. Thank goodness I am not a guy, where my, shall we call it, edginess? Is not on full display. Hubbie the Dearest will get the biggest kick out of seeing me so , ahem, happy! Thank God for the man I married! And for his appreciation of my appreciation of our beautiful, hard working boys in uniform. OMG, does this make me a cougar? ACK! I, in three weeks, will be old enough to be some of their mothers. Okay, maybe that's the route I will take to survive this wedding! I could be their mother, I could be their mother.....I can look but I will not touch!(see receiving line paragraph above)
I WILL BE IN HEAVEN! Do you hear me? HEAVEN!
I will have to write a post wedding update letting you all know how it went! Oh but wait ! There is more! After that, whilst HTD goes back to work, my father . baby and I will be going to Virginia Beach for another vacation. Do you know what that means? Navy boys, lots and lots of Navy boys, and maybe a few marines. Beach, beach filled with armed services beauty, and me in my sunglasses taking it all in, while ahem, reading my book! Eye candy overload! Roll me over and stick a fork in me I will be done, do you hear me? Done! Le sigh...life is rough! Keep me in your prayers!
So to all my Marines and Navy boys past and present, that have touched my life in any way, I salute you!
To R and N, Congratulations! We love you!
**No actual upcoming Melissa McCarthy movies about Marines
Thursday, July 3, 2014
I miss you. I still miss you so much it hurts, when I let it. I have kept my promise. I have taken care of Daddy. We have turned travel into our way of bonding and making new memories. We stay busy in the summer traveling, and we have gotten as close as you, my baby and I were. We are still not whole and will never be again without you. But we are OK. There are still the days when my baby asks why her granny had to die and leave her. I cuddle her and try my best to explain it to her. I made a promise to you that I would never let her forget you, and I haven't, but the days that she asks me to tell her a granny story, because she cannot remember, cut me right to my very soul. I do my best to help her through her grief and be the strong one, and some days I simply cry with her. We have all been tested in the two and a half years since you passed, in various ways, and I am tired. I have had to be strong for every single person in my family, and I am tired. I have had to balance taking care of my husband and our family, and my daddy and our family as well. It is so very hard. The scale tipped in favor of one or the other several times, and I thank god that I have such wonderful, loving, understanding men in my life. It is so hard to juggle family time, dad time, in law time, and not leave someone wanting. We are so blessed with so many that love us, it is just a huge job , trying to take care of the well being of so many. I have a full time job of taking care of my daughter, a part time job, taking care of our family, taking care of daddy, trying to give the extended members of our family face time, and generally trying to keep everybody happy, that I have been exhausted.
I went back to work full time temporarily, Punkin Doo started and finished school, started and finished dance class and her first recital, was on the summer swim team and did well for her first year, and has attended her first musical camp. I have been a homeroom mom, a stage mom, a swim mom, and during every single practice, activity, rehearsal, class party and recital I have wished that you could see her. I know you would be so proud. I miss you mom. All the time. I wish you could be here to share it all with us.
I did not start this out as a boo-hop post, with the intention of crying the entire time, but rather a post to let you know that I am OK. I have submersed myself in busy these last two and a half years. I forced myself to march along for the first year of grief. Then it felt like I had achieved a major invisible milestone in the process, otherwise known as life after mom. Immediately after, two weeks after, I was able to walk again after breaking my leg and my husband left his executive job and we moved back to WV. We have had a full five year old year, and I have loved every minute of it. My greatest joy has been being a mommy, being way to much like you! It has been a rough year and a half in many other ways, we have been tested in almost every other way imaginable, and we have pulled through. We are resilient that man of mine and I. Nana broke her hip and we went to visit. Punk in doo helped her pull through her hip replacement surgery ordeal. I wish you could see her, she is everybody's little sunshine. She is so very many people's reason to smile! She is like us, my baby. Woodall women. A caretaker and a performer that girl!
So in all of the caretaking of everybody else in the last two and a half years, I feel like I lost or forgot myself a little. I was just trying so hard to keep everybody else afloat, I forgot to paddle. So I realized that I love myself, I love ME! In a series of going out for my bff's fortieth birthday bash, lunch with two of my best friends, and the first time having margaritas with my daddy, that I miss me! I am funny dammit! I have rediscovered me, who has been a little lost in the haze of motherhood, family hood, being smothered in a blanket of grief, and having to maintain the best PokerFace in the business in too many areas of my life and walk on tiptoes for too many people. I was always myself with you, and you always reminded me of how wonderful ME was. Well, now it is my job! But you know what? I am fabulous and I am back! I am now fine with taking a me afternoon and crying if I need to, I am fine saying no, I am fine letting people know when they are crossing the line, and I am fine with those family members who have taken it upon themselves to assume fault and cut my father and my immediate family out of their lives. We are down to dad, hub, me and kids, and we are just fine that way. You are in heaven, you and God can work on that family member's issues.
So while I still have all my titles and jobs, I am feeling a little more me than I have in awhile, and I finally had an afternoon to sit down alone, write raw, and pour it all out. I love you more than ever momma, and miss you like crazy. I am getting back to the me you raised!
Love, your daughter
Wednesday, May 7, 2014
As Mother's Day is fast approaching this year, I have found myself reminiscing fondly on some old family traditions. My Mom and Nana were always taken to dinner, or celebrated with cookouts, and both always received flowers. They both loved fresh cut flowers. They did not have to cook and were allowed the opportunity to catch up with their families. To not have to worry over the family meal, as we mothers are want to do, and actually get to enjoy being the center of attention, along with school made trinkets and cards were a perfect way to spend the special day. My mother was a lover of beautiful things, and we loved showering her with presents. To watch her squeal or exclaim with glee and absolute joy at whatever new pretty we had bought just for her, was always so much fun! She was like a kid on Christmas morning! But it wasn't all about the presents. It was all about coming together to spend time together s a family.
Every year the Saturday before Mother's Day was my annual dance recital. The dance instructor gave the mother of each dancer a red rose, and dedicated every performance to his mom and all the moms in the audience. This was a yearly tradition that lasted for ten years. I thought of this the other day as I watched my own daughter dancing, during dance class, getting ready for her first dance recital. A fond memory of the time and money spent on me, out of love all those years. She was always so very proud of me. She would have been so very proud of my little dancer as well.
My mother and I spent several Mother's Days in the hospital. I would read to her, we would visit and chat, and I would bring her all around good cheer and humor. That is what I became to my mother in the end, her lifeline of hope and laughter. It was my job to cheer her up. I was her unflappably sunny girl who helped convince her to hang in there and to never give up, even in her weakest moments. In her private moments of despair, she turned to me, and I was her reassurance and her safe place. I was the one who would listen without judging or lecturing. I was glad to be able to have the opportunity to hang out with my momma for hours on end, by her bedside, even if it was only to listen to the labored sound of her breathing interrupted every so often by her talking in her sleep or the occasional snore. Oh how I wish I could be by her bedside just once more and hold her warm hand in mine. Just one more time to gaze upon her beautiful countenance, bathed in slumber, as I was simply in her presence, near her.
Our last Mother's Day together, was three years ago. It is a day I will never forget. My momma did not feel like going out to eat. She had been in and out of the hospital, she was very sick. She had round the clock care at this time, and so my two and a half year old daughter, husband and I went to be with her for the day. We gave her helpers the day off. I cooked pasta for dinner and we ate. She visited and played with her "doll-baby" as she always called my daughter. We were having a good day, except she did not feel one hundred percent. We enjoyed each other for a few hours and then she became ill.
She did not make it to the bathroom before becoming ill. I felt so bad for cooking pasta that upset her tummy! At this point, I realized that things had really changed. What had started out as small, subtle changes, were now, as of this day, concrete absolutes in my mind. A monumental shift had occurred in our relationship, and I don't know exactly at what point it happened. Had I been in denial?
I was now helping to take care of my mother. I was now her caregiver. Long gone were the days when she had taken care of me, and in were the new days that had positioned me as her caregiver. As I scrubbed my mother, cleaned up the mess, bathed her and dressed her, as she was too weak to do it herself, scrubbed the rugs, floor, carpet, hallway, walls, trash can, and sink, I realized that I would literally do anything on earth for this woman, just as she had done for me. It showed me a new level of my mother's humility in accepting help, and having to depend on me. Never again would I balk at the letters M.R.S.A., if she needed her hair washed, I would make it happen. If she needed help in the hospital to shower and clean up, I was there. She always got so excited when I would help her take a shower, to get "all purtied up" for my daddy. I have never met a woman who liked to smell good, or wear perfume like my mother. She was always so thankful to have me help her, not anyone else. She was more comfortable with me, and that's how it should be.
After I got her all tucked into bed, and my brother arrived to spend some time with her, I gave her the biggest hug and told her that I loved her. My baby came in to say goodbye, and then we got ready to leave. She kept trying to apologize to me, and I wouldn't hear of it. I told her that was my job, that she wiped my butt for years and now it was my turn! I have never been a squeamish person, I was raised in a medical family, and it is next to impossible to gross me out. I told her to not speak one more word, that I loved her and I was so sorry she was sick on Mother's Day! I loved her so much, and with everything I had in me, I put that into my smile, hugs and kisses that day.
I cried the entire way home. The baby fell asleep in the carseat, and I sobbed and sobbed. I think for the first time, I let myself see how bad off my mother really was. I let the realizations sink in, where before I just always kept up the good and positive attitude fight, and trudged along. After staring my mother's poor hemorrhoids in the face that day, I had my breaking point. There was no longer any hiding from it, or remaining in denial. I went to bed bawling my eyes out
One of my favorite memories along those lines, is an ordinary day when I helped her to get a shower in the hospital. I remember taking a giant 7-11 heavy plastic cup to rinse her hair with. She was moaning in the shower it felt so good to her, to have a hot shower! She was not strong enough to rinse her hair, so I rinsed her hair free of soap, and helped her wash her legs and feet. I handed her washrags, and shampoo, and towels. In a lifetime of memories, it is this one that strangely brings me the most comfort. It is the small things like a shower, that most of us take for granted.
So from my worst but strangely cathartic Mother's Day story to my other Ma Day ramblings, Kiss your mamma's! You never know!
Happy Mother's Day to all!