summer of revelations.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

what a summer.
a weird one.
a summer CHOCKED FULL of learning.
some lessons easy, some not so.
but a good one.  and like every summer, it's gone as fast as it began, taking all the laziness, freedom & laxidazical ways with it.  
beginning with cravings for heat & humidity.  
cursing both, come late august.
on to dreaming of football, chili, jeans & big, cozy sweaters & that chill in the air.
leaving behind, as always, only the greatest memories & moments in its wake.
days at the pool.
riding bikes.
frogs, catepillars, worms.
nature walks.
ice cream trips.
birthday parties.
road trips. 
galoshes & puddles.
GALLONS of sunscreen, to the point of, 'oh, F it.  the kids can't get any darker or burn anymore. . .right?'
rainy days watching movies, playing games, or playing tag in the house until someone gets hurt (fun always ends in tears over here.)
but that's summer for you.
filled with wonderful, beautiful sunny days.
sometimes a few rainy, gloomy days, which isn't a bad thing.
makes you appreciate & soak up those sunny days so much more.
(and technically, it's not over yet, as we still have a week before school starts,
so i'm not calling the game yet.)
we'll wring every last drop out of this summer. 
so, this summer.
despite the, let me call them, 'challenging' moments,
although we had to say good-bye to two good buddies of jack's, that moved (one pictured above,)
we lost some (LOTS) of hair & some sanity with it,
we crossed our fingers, prayed our hearts out for good results,
were FILLED with sorrow for other's losses,
late nights, early mornings,
and more 'not-so-fun' moments to go through,
well, we had (have) SO.MUCH.TO.BE.THANKFUL.FOR.
jack turned six last week.
and i know every mother says this, 
and i say it almost every day,
but, 'damn it!  didn't i just deliver you?  didn't we just bring you home from the hospital?'
no mother forgets that first meeting.  that first moment.
and i remember mine, with my first love, like it was yesterday.
when they handed this P.R.E.C.I.O.U.S. bundle of joy to me, 
his new, warm, fresh baby skin against mine,
practically drowning him in my tears.
oh, blessed moms.  you know what that feels like. 
when they hand you your new baby, naked & screaming, 
plop him on your chest like a hot potato,
only he's better than that.
warm & smooth & perfect. 
looking to you for. . .everything.  forever.
and in that moment, you've never been more alive.
it's a high like no other.  a rush.  a feeling of true & total Godliness.  pure bliss.
(yes, i know not all of you had that experience with childbirth, nor care to do it again.)
but this was mine.  and i go back there so often. 
and now.  six years old.  those eyes looking at me the same way they did when they handed you to me.
like you knew me already.  seeing right through to my soul & stealing my heart forever.
that little, teeny face.
a flawless being, with the face of an old man.  :)
and yet SO. BEAUTIFUL.
and we never forget that face.  at least, God, i hope we don't.
at 6.  at 15.  at 25.  
we still see that little angel face, looking up at us from the crux of our arms.
and now six.
that damn fast forward button.  if only it didn't work.  or i could just hit pause whenever i wanted.  or better yet, tivo their lives, so i could replay whenever i wanted or watch & partake when it was convenient for me.
if only it were broken like every other VCR that's left.
but it's not.  
and i don't get to make that choice. 
and you continue to grow, become more independent, know more than me sometimes, teach ME most times. . .
so, these moments.
they are, just moments.
but we only get so many of them.
and they add up to a lifetime.
a family here in stillwater, just lost their little girl last week,
she was the same age as jack.
to meningitis.  bacterial meningitis.  from a beach.
so rare.  so random.  so horrifying.  every parents' worst nightmare.
out on the town, enjoying a beautiful summer evening,
a few nights later,
burying their sweet, beautiful, baby annie.
the pain they are suffering.  the why's.  the how's.  the new life they have to live now, without her.
i'll be DAMNED if i don't soak up every moment, the best i can.
despite the frustration, the petty annoyances, the extreme exhaustion, constant disciplining, chaos, screaming & whining. . .(by the kids AND mommy:)
because life is that short.  sometimes shorter.

THEY are our life. 
what keep us going.
what made everything wonderful about this summer & all the good that is in our lives.
what are the top 13 things i learned this summer, on my list of 800?  
things i became aware of AND am now trying to practice.
1.  you're not that special.  but your kids are.  be kind to them.
2.  on the other side of despair, is peace.  always.
3.  i know we've heard this a million times, but God never gives you anything you can't handle.  
4.  never ask, 'why me.'  because, refer to #3.  that's why.
5.  things are NEVER as bad as you THINK they are going to be.  never.
6.  your own health is everything.  maybe not today, but it will be tomorrow, when you need it most.
7.  vacationing with your kids isn't YOUR vacation.  it's there's. 
8.  FRIENDS.ARE.FAMILY & can bring just as much comfort as your favorite blanket.
9.  i can have chocolate every day if i damn well please.
10.the more love you give to your children, the more love they'll give to you (well, at least someday, if not today.)
11.  energy, strength & stamina doesn't come from a strong body.  it comes from a strong mind.  a PEACE-FILLED mind.
12.  it is despair, sadness, fear. . .all the crappy things in life, that make us better.  make us appreciate & make us live better.  it is the unexpected & the challenging, that brings life in to greater focus.  that adds color to a world of grey, if you can see yourself through to the other side.
13.  surround yourself only, with the people that bring you love, positivity, laughter, laughter, laughter, compassion & who share!  who hide nothing & hold nothing back.  those individual are so PRICELESS to me & make my life so much better.
14.  a hug can make everything better.  so can crying.
15.  read more books.
to all my girlfriends who are always here, my newest friends & dearest friends & oldest friends, with whom i have unbreakable bonds, you know who you are & i love you.
and to my baby boy, wishing you only a lifetime of good health & happiness.  that the light, passion, positivity, SENSITIVITY & joy that you bring to our lives, be a part of you always.


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