The Same Highway

The same highway every year

identical parcels packed every year

black, blue, green, orange sleeping bags

and the same jerking in the diesel truck

from the boat being pulled behind.

 

What is it about this trip?

When does the same journey become

ritual

or tradition?

Do we decide these for our family’s?

At what point do the roads become

so familiar that I could drive them

with my eyes closed…

 

Lemons and limes roll around the floor

boards of the truck-

the bags torn open and this is only the beginning…

 

The memory of what is created with my children

Is something I have grown to love over the years

Lots of preparation and something is always

forgotten–

Gratefully, its never been a child

Seven trips to the store, five coolers

four bags of food and 12 towels

 

Every year this trip comes and goes

excited and happy, 95 degrees

and my heaven on earth

feeling weightless in the water…

 

the sun breaks through the windows

casting light across my bare legs

in a matter of days, the same sun will

be shining across my face

on the drive home…

 

 

 

 

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With Arms Wide Open — By Creed

The sun creeps over the peak of the barn

beats down on the dew covered grass

The outer row of the orchard

cast beams of light through the rows inside

 

So much space and yet I take it for granted every day

not everyone has this, the ability to wake in the morning

and see the day break across the horizon

 

I prayed for this day to give me clarity, a path

when I woke this morning, to see the world differently

 

No more guilt, just life experiences

no more trying to please people

at the cost of myself…

 

I seek true happiness for myself because it is what I need —

at what point should I live and let live

 

There as a part deep down inside of me that is not satisfied

if I could figure out what it was I would nail it

to the floor and chip away at it until it’s gone

 

Standing in the rain is an amazing cleanse-

I wished for the rain last night

running down my face, neck, arms and traveling

the length of my body until it falls to the ground

 

Clouds paint the sky in blues and shades of white

going through the motions, might just get me to tomorrow

My list of chores continues to grow

so, I start at one

take a cleansing breath in and prayer for rain

My Children

My children are pretty wonderful! I know I am biased but when they go to their grandparents for a night or two and they jump out of the car upon their return and run to me arms wide open. I know I have done something right.  My children are loved deeply and they themselves know how to love. They run to their dad in the same way.  My kids come running full speed ahead and wrap their arms around me and squeeze like it could be our last embrace. Every single hug I get from them is this way.

As you have probably figured by my writing, I have twin boys who are twelve and my husband is the eldest of 3 brothers.  The gene pool is heavily weighted on my husband’s side…its something crazy like 36 grandchildren and all but one is a girl!!  Now, to me that’s a pretty loaded pool of testosterone.

When I got pregnant I remember thinking I wanted a girl but down to my core I knew I was having boys.  At first, babies were babies to me-a lot of work and they must be taken care of or literally they wouldn’t survive.  As months and years pass now, I have two pre-teen boys  that are somewhat independent, love to succeed and want to succeed, desperately want their parents to be proud of them as we both are. And I find myself loosening the reigns a bit, I don’t want to do this because they will always be my babies but they aren’t babies any more.

Each of my son’s have strengths and weakness and their uniqueness to each other and others their age is something for them to be proud of.  I have heard for years that my child is different in this way or that and I often cringe at these words where my fists unconsciously squeeze together.  See, the word different has a negative notion to it and it defiantly does to my son.  So, when someone calls him different I turn into momma bear and in my head their face hits my fist. Now, I am a rational person and do have my best moments when protecting my children’s right in school.  But when they are violated I come running in like a bull in a china shop.  I am proud of the advocate I am for my children.  I would help anyone out their if they struggled in this area.

All of us are unique, special, gifted and some things come easier for others but what someone else struggles with you might succeed at.  It is my job to show and teach my children to step in and help others with regard to this.

It is a constant battle for me to remind my sons that I want them to have a strong work ethic, a heart of gold, kindness, how to be gentlemen, and it is ok to fail as long as you get up and go after it even harder than the time before!! I want both of my sons to understand that the reward takes work, back breaking work and you will reap great reward from hard work.  There is a time for each of us to win and each of us to fall short.  I want them to know graciousness and courage as they move to their teenage years!

I am Happy for That…

 

Don’t Want to Miss a Thing by Aerosmith

There was a time in my life that I stepped away and pulled back from all the people who loved me. I felt stuck in the life I had chosen and couldn’t talk to anyone about it.  I was stubborn at my young age and was trying to convince myself that if I just pushed forward it would all workout.

I was falling deeper and deeper into an abyss of darkness and depression and unconsciously began to give up, thinking why would anyone want to hear me talk about this deep dark sadness that no one would understand in hearing.  I was so tired of people telling me to just go work out and everything would feel better and be better.

I had thought about my first marriage starting with this burden but had told myself it was the only way.  What a crazy thought right? I actually had to convince myself to go through with the wedding.

I sat in this beautiful white dress with a vail draped over one shoulder, eating apple slices, and I was in such a state of panic that I couldn’t contain my nerves and started to have a panic attack.  My dear friends and sister were in that room and after I took my anxiety medication, the chaos and stress seemed to slip away.  It was as if I was looking through rose colored glasses.  Everything was blurry but I felt okay. I was ready to walked down the isle.

When I look back now I wonder how many people thought that marriage was a bad idea.  On my side or his side, I am sure there were both.  His eyes were welled with tears when I walked to face him and my dad kissed my cheek and presented me to him.  Giving me to him and I stood there wanting my dad to say no but he did not.

We got through the vows, the rings, the first kiss, and back down the isle to sign the marriage license. The music swirled around us, people eating and enjoying the venue and love that filled the room that everyone was feeling made me dishonest.  I knew that I loved this man but there were too many barriers, too many reasons I should have said no, and they hurt we had caused each other already was unrepairable.

There was a scuffle about what to cut the cake with and why his mother had to be involved, and a gift was given to my new husband but not to me…it was only for him. I cried in the parking lot as his real father and step mom were leaving. Wasn’t this supposed to be the best day of my life?? Why was I hurting so much and why was I alone?

Soon after our married life began, after the honeymoon, we were home trying to fix the problems we had before.  They didn’t get better, easier, or go away.  They, in fact, got worse. We both tried to figure things out but papers were signed, Thanksgiving my family moved me out of our house in the pouring rain. The rain felt right on a day like that, I was exhausted with my own tears so the rain helped because I was numb.  I was numb and I was empty.

I would love to tell you that love won out in end, we had some amazing reconciliation, but we didn’t.  There is more to this story but today I’m not ready to go any deeper.  As I still feel this sense of loss for the mistakes I made, the part I took in breaking the “us” we once were. I can say, that he is happy and I am happy for that!

Whisper

Small Bump by Ed Shennan

I wait for you

Quietly you are hidden inside me

No one knows me like you do

Am I afraid of losing you

 

I wonder where you are

Every day

Every second

 

Do you feel

I feel

Want to know what you feel

 

A candle flickers in my window

And I still wait

Find the light I have left for you

 

Have you looked for it

Do you look for it

Dusted across the sky

 

I search for you to find romance

The kind you show to me

My heart bleeds for this

 

Broken for the lack of luster

Have you noticed

I have given up

 

I can’t talk about it again

I will not beg

Why don’t you see me

 

This could be a start to something

Beautiful & new

Creating as we go

Whispering through unknown

Hustle & Bustle

Nights by Avicii

I am an open minded person who believes the best in people but there are defiantly times where my mind goes to a bad place and I questions people’s intentions.  I wonder if they are in fact telling me the truth, if they are blowing smoke up my ass or simply they had the best intentions in their mind but things seem to fall through whether they like it or not.

I want people to say what they want but also follow through on what they say they will do.  Life is too short to be filled with empty promises. So much of life needs to be lived as though it was your last moments and not worry about all the bull shit and just take people for their word.

After all life does happen therefore, we cannot possibly understand the ins and outs of every schedule but it is also my opinion that if I want to see or plan something with someone, dammit I want it to happen!! And if something happens than at least tell me why?

Okay, Okay I am throwing a tiny fit but that’s allowed, in my book. I frequently feel a bit jealous of all the fun my sister seems to be having with others and I want it to be with me. I have the best time with her and I want all the fun times to be with me.  Crazy, right!?! But who can blame me for this.  No one really, I am just being silly. But the heart wants what the heart wants, right?!?!

Does this make any sense? Probably not but it is how I feel at this moment, sitting in this chaotic place and with chatter and smiles seem somehow joyous and irritating at the same time.

 

A touch of Grace

 

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Sometimes, we meet people and become friends in the most unexpected way.  For me I was friends with her friend and this is how I met her.  We cheered on the sidelines of the soccer games our children both played on. Our children instantly made a connection and today, my kids believe her son is their best friend.  If I had to guess, I would say it has been about five or six years.  Our children still enjoy each other and my children always want her son to come over.  They often ask if he can stay the whole weekend but time doesn’t always permit this.

I believe it is important for my children to have a solid group of friends to grow with- to be positive role models and frankly, keep them out of trouble as they get older.  These friends, I will continue to encourage them to get together with and stay in contact with because I believe they are a positive influence.  At the age of 12, I believe I can foresee what other kids will be like as they get older on a basic level.  If another kid is bulling one of my kids…that will not happen on my watch and I will for sure try to encourage my children to chose someone else to hang out with…I do this in a sneaky way because soon they will figure it out.  I know, I know, I may sound like a crazy mom but I will do everything in my power to keep my kids on the straight and narrow because there WILL come a time when what I say doesn’t matter and they WILL test the limits and possible lie to me as kids do as they get older to do what they want…if I say No, they will find a way to do it anyway with a little lie involved.  Now, I would like to say my children are above this and I know they will never pull this on me but I am a reasonable person and I know what I did when I was younger. I have a few situations in my memory that got me into trouble and yes, I got caught. It is part of growing up!

Back to my friend. We have gotten closer over the years and it was within the last year that she had a surprise knocking at her door.  I would say, a blessing from God! Actually, knocking on the inside of her belly. Surprise pregnancy!! I was so elated when she told me…I remember her buying a tiny pair of girl baby shoes at an auction and she whisper it in my ear and I think I jumped out of my shoes!!  I was so thrilled!!  I tried to picture what I would do in that situation and I knew I wouldn’t be able to contain myself.

Hours, days, and months passed by and we stayed close as we planned her baby shower then came and went as quickly as her 7 months.  I remember seeing a post on Facebook about her being in the hospital because the baby was coming early.  I immediately text her and she was calm, collected, and full of grace. She said her family was with her.  The baby boy arrived early and was in the hospital for some time before he could come home.  I did not visit her and her baby boy in the hospital.  See, I was once laying in a hospital bed with premature twins and the first couple days were touch and go…would they survive?  We had many visitors and it all worked out for the best but at the time I remember thinking I didn’t want an audience. I did keep checking in with my friend and her family but I didn’t want to intrude.  I longed to visit her and immediately felt for her premature baby and for her family because of the delicate situation.

She came home and she was positive, delicate, and in love with this little boy!  Her entire family was.  Being in their house you could feel the love swirling around the rom. Quickly, I fell in love with this baby. I visit her every week, sometimes uninvited but every time she and I fell into this rhythmic conversation, I held the baby as much as I possibly could except for feeding time because I couldn’t provide him with that 😉 Everyone in their house is warm, kind, and I am lucky to know them all.

However, when I hold this baby and he breathes in and out, I am reminded how precious time is and how fast children grown, cherish these moments of beauty.  His head on my shoulder, he is so relaxed, extremely loved and when his body drifts into a slumber I love looking at this fresh face, round cheeks, perfect lips, and when he opens his eyes they are the deepest brown just like his brothers and parents.  He is a wonderful baby.  I never thought I could fall in love with someone else’ baby but I have. This is a precious gift and I feel so blessed to be included in his presence.

I know this mother is kind, beautiful, and her heart is so full. Some days I show up with her favorite white chocolate mocha, other days with blueberries or raspberries.  I come to spend time with her and her son.

Recently, I was sitting in a broken rocking chair chatting with her about life and an unexpected question fell from her lips.  I have never been asked this question before and it was a question so shocking in a good way, that I am not sure how quickly I spoke. It was one of those questions that anyone would feel honored to be asked but I didn’t expect it all.

I was asked to be her son’s godmother and I felt nervous, excited, and proud…. most of all honored!!  As I held her son I hugged her with tears on my face and said, “yes, but why?” I meant to shout “yes” from the rooftops but what fell from my lips was a fumbling group of words that no one could decipher and as she proceeded to tell me why she and her husband chose me.  I was more and more aware of the the little one in my arms, she was entrusting me with his potentially future. I am still so honored and can’t put into words how I have felt since then.

In my life, I am blessed like most of my days but today I am more blessed because I have a godson. Funny how things work out.  Since the first time I held this little baby boy…I started a journal for him.  Writing to him about my observations, thoughts and dreams for him and how wonderful his family is.  Someday, I will give him this gift with great honor.

 

Need a Reboot?

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Everyone needs to get away. We need to take a break from the daily chores that start, stop, and repeat that life requires us to do, to be successful productive individuals in this world.

Recently, I was given the opportunity to escape or getaway. Although, I do not like leaving my family and I miss them so much when I am gone, I think everyone needs to get off the beating path of monotony of every day life.  My family is always tucked close to my heart, thinking of them in the time that I am away and quite often thoughts of them consume conversations when I am not with them.

As I have gotten older, my kids have gotten older and so much of them are a part of my conversations everyday that I wonder what I used to talk about before I had kids.  It’s this all consuming love and fulfillment everyday that it’s impossible to think about what my life would be like without them in it.

So, when I get the opportunity to check out for a few hours, a day, two days…it’s actually hard for me to make the decision to leave but it fills a place in me that is full of wonderment and laughter about the world in the the time that I am away. I think it is the change of scenery that refreshes and in a way, reboots us all that is important.

Turning Over a New Leaf

There are times when situations are put in our path and it is up to you to pay attention to them or not.  As individuals we have the opportunity to make choices daily.  We decide whether to go left or right, forward or backwards, or pick door one or door two.  It’s as simple as saying yes or no but it is never that simple, is it? I think most people tend to over think things and sometimes I am one of these people. However, I am trying something different lately.

I think many people live in the realm of actions cause reactions and choices have consequences so we get so wrapped up in what if this or what if that… that we don’t ever just go with living in the moment.  Living in the moment comes more naturally to some people and not so much to others.

I crave more spontaneity in life but often I find myself trying to make a plan or a list of tasks to accomplish things.  I am a planner by nature but am realizing lately that I don’t always need a plan. I would like to think I am always prepared but that doesn’t really jive with living in the moment.  Why is this?  Does life really require a schedule?  In my mind, I am trained to create this schedule but when it comes to relishing in the moments, life won’t end without a schedule.  It would in fact bring more spontaneity into my life and this is what I crave.  I want to try new things and test my own limits.  So, I am going to stick to this way of thinking for awhile and see what happens.

Last week my sister called and asked me if I had plans for this weekend.  Normally, we are both booked weeks in advance.  But not this weekend. Her spontaneous suggestion of getting away to McMenamins for a few nights and getting a few more stamps in our passports was a brilliant idea. So, I decided to jump at the chance and booked our room that day.  I always need sister time, heck, I would live next door to her if I could.  She is one of my favorite people in this whole world.  The laughter, honesty, and trust we have is limitless.

This new leaf I have turned over is to live in the moment and get out of my head, so to speak. Spend less time worrying and more time living.  More time with experiences and less time planning them. I will keep you posted on this works out for me.

How do you look at life?