"Perhaps I am stronger than I think!" ~ Thomas Merton

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

In that final hour....

.... she walked about the tiny apartment, deciding what of her life was important enough. What would be considered extra weight or baggage. She had mental baggage to carry, so material baggage was unnecessary. Besides material things were sold all over the world.

... everything was in place; the baby's things had been packed and were on their way . All of his things would come along for they required no mental baggage & no space. One thing she hated to leave behind was the vintage bassinet & Jenny Lind crib given to her by co-workers; passed down from their families. Now these things would probably go to the trash or if someone was lucky enough to come across them. She hoped someone would get more use out of them. Besides, bassinets & cribs were sold all over the world, however, somebody's memories could not.

...another check over things led to the wedding gifts; blenders, wine glasses, place settings, etc.; things that were never used by the bride & groom. Oh, except the hand blender; the husband had taught her to make salad dressing from mayonnaise & vinegar.... during one of their rare 'functional moments.... Even still today, 112 years later when she lets her mind wander there - which is nearly never - she always wondered what became of the hand blender.

....the arrival of the husband interrupted her actions & thoughts. She hadn't laid eyes on him in nearly 2-3 days and now he waltzed in like he had had a day @ the office. She didn't question him because she didn't care anymore what he did. They made small talk & he offered to fix her breakfast before she left for work. And also offered to keep the baby as opposed to her taking him to daycare. Where were these types of action when it mattered? Why now?


...she very quickly dismissed him w/an excuse of not being hungry & she didn't mind taking the baby. He helped her gather her purse, the baby, etc. while she watched him. She wanted to get a good look at him for the memory bank should she ever go there. The last was of him smiling, waving & telling her to have good day. And then she closed the door on that final hour of that life.


.... she went directly to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), purchased a one-way ticket, boarded her flight w/her 2 month old son. Within hours, she was standing in her parents' kitchen in her Midwest hometown.

... and that was the final hour of my marriage 23 years ago.








Sunday Scribbling archived word: The Final Hour

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Random flow...


With my love for elderly folks, I was quite happy to stumble upon this beauty. Isn't she sweet? Love the way she writes. And what an inspiration - she's wheelchair bound & still just as positive as the day is long. A lesson to all of us (me) when we start to whine. Can't wait to read more of her;

Back to work w/the 'new hair.' It's nothing drastic, just cut evenly blunt & flat-ironed. I love how easy it is & how much 'swing' it has. I look more 'up to date' now; I dumping all of my 'hair guinea pig crap' and sticking w/this stylist. I want it like this always. JCPenney salon - who knew?

Should've bought those bananas on the quick-sale rack & made banana smoothies;

The weekend was beautiful every day. The weather channel called it 'abundant sunshine.' Not one cloud in sight for 72 hours...

Am very thankful for my full day;
  1. Bible study in bed when I woke
  2. coffee on the porch & read paper
  3. pancakes & bacon for son & D
  4. watered w/watering can, then pulled out hose
  5. watered everything & sprayed down porch & patio
  6. marinated roast for dinner & put in crock pot w/onion & green peppers*
  7. washed collard greens; made w/cabbage, onion & green peppers**
  8. cleaned kitchen
  9. played around w/the camera (results to follow later)
  10. did a load of laundry
  11. cut son's hair
  12. sat on porch & patio & listened to the crickets
  13. actually made our lunches/set coffee pot/got clothes ready tonite**
*did get green peppers off quick sale rack
**this never happens

I was going to make these, but I didn't feel like turning the oven on & didn't want to run the air. I had a baking spell, found that website & these popped up first as 'easy.' I'll keep you posted;

I kept feeling like I should 'rush' for some reason throughout the day, but I consciously made myself slow down & be in each moment of what I was doing. Instead of thinking of what I was gonna do next, I took my time & focused on the moment. It made me 10x more calm...

There's an abandoned house behind me that will (hopefully) be torn down soon. I have dreams of being able to get the lot, fence it in & there goes my space for gardening & flowers that like LIGHT. And right in the middle will be the mighty willow! Prayers...

Speaking of elderly, Sat. I met a couple named 'Bob & Dottie." Dottie still wore her hair like she probably did when she started going w/Bob in 7th grade. Married 40 years, Bob's eyesight was nearly gone, so Dottie was his eyes. She was all of maybe 4'11 & had the most beautiful smile. They were still very clearly in love. I have their address & I'm sure will drop them a card.

Finally, I got my gift of jewels project all ready to ship offf. I hope it brings her joy; I love being a part of this. As I always say, Se'Lah is amazing.





















Sweet story behind the elderly love picture. All that w/a pencil, huh? Amazing...

Beliving....

F = Fulfillment
A = Answered Prayers
I = In The Moment
T = Trust
H = Hope, Health, & Happiness

I have fulfillment in my life;
it comes from the answers to prayers;
I dedicate myself to living, being & appreciating every moment I am blessed with;
I trust the Lord with all my being;
I focus on hope, health & happiness for all the rest of my days.







Sunday Scribbling word: Faith

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Love List


Adding more love to the pot today! :-) In my random thinking time, I came up with this list of my favorite 'love movies' as I call 'em. The ones I like to watch by myself over & over, hold my breath, smile, laugh, giggle, & talk along, verbatim, with even though I've seen them 100's of times.
  1. Love Jones (Larenz Tate & Nia Long trying NOT to fall in love. Scorching hot...)
  2. Prince of Tides (Streisand is elegantly classic. Beautiful scenery as well)
  3. White Palace (Susan Sarandon turns James Spader OUT! Love it)
  4. Love & Basketball (@ the end when he says 'double or nothing.' Scream!)
  5. Hope Floats (Bullock & Connick made sparks, plus the soundtrack great)
  6. My Best Friend's Wedding (sad & cute. I can't imagine Julia's pain in losing)
  7. Commitments (Alan Payne. Enuff said)
  8. The Way We Were (could Redford's teeth be any more perfect? And the way Streisand would brush his hair from his face. Hold me... (LOL!)
  9. Regarding Henry (loved "Henry" after he got shot, plus Annette Benning is my girl!)
  10. The American President (ditto re: Annette)
  11. Jason's Lyric (Steamy)
  12. One Fine Day (cute story; Clooney & Pfeiffer are cute)
  13. A Star is Born (Loved Streisand & Kristofferson's ying/yang)
  14. Untamed Heart (Marissa Tomei/Christian Slater = brings tissues)
  15. Ghost (do i really need to say anything?)
  16. Terminator** (see disclaimer below - LOL!)
  17. Diary of a Mad Black Woman (Shemar Moore/K.Elise christian love chemistry. Smoking hot w/out even touching. Loved. That.)
  18. Love Story ('love isn't having to say you're sorry.' Yeah, right. If you don't tell me you're sorry, somebody's getting their ass kicked (ha!)
  19. An Office & A Gentleman (the name alone says quite a bit)
  20. Driving Miss Daisy (c'mon! you know Miss Daisy loved 'Ole Polk.')
  21. The Mirror Has Two Face (Streisand love + when they finally kissed - whew!)
  22. A Walk In the Clouds (Keanu Reeves was delish, plus winery scenery was dream-like)
  23. Mississippi Masala (Denzel trying to get his Indian love on. Cute story)
  24. Overboard (Hawn/Russell - they make their own magic)
  25. Bridges of Madison County (punches me in my gut each time. I hold my breath @ the end each time)
  26. Jerry McGuire (not a huge Cruise fan, but he was extremely charming in this.)
  27. When a Man Loves A Woman (I am an Andy Garcia fan, though. Major swoon-age)
**Disclaimer: in spite of Arnold brutally murdering folks named Sarah Connor, Kyle Reese came back thru time to save his Sarah. I'm sorry, but if you come back through time to save me, I'm more than likely gonna sleep w/you. Count on it. :-)

Happy Love Thursday...

This month is flying, isn't it? Here in the big O-H, there are some days that truly feel like Fall. While I love the Fall, it makes me sad to think my 'jungle' of a yard/porch of flowers & plants will prepare to go through their end of summer cycle. The morning glories are already changing, preparing for a long winter sleep; starting to get tiny leaves to create thousands of seed pods. I always wish after Fall is over that I had a summer home to go to until the snow & cold leave Ohio.

Anyway, in keeping w/Love Thursday, I have this thought about 'home.'

When I decided to end my marriage & L.A. life, the only place I could think of to refresh was coming back home to the Midwest. All I could think of was being in a being a quiet place, a more peaceful place, a place with parks, grass, 'real' trees (not palm), folks I knew, memories, a more affordable place and 'real' regular people who weren't always trying to be the next 'somebody."

Even though I never thought I would move back into the house I grew up in, I found myself with my mom and my ailing father. I was back in my old bedroom with one side fixed up 'nursery style' for my months- old son. I took that time to exhale, read volumes of books/magazines, go back to my old church, run into old high school friends and draw closer to my mother & her wisdom (it was she who recognized 'something different' in my son) & bask in the glow of being with family again. It was also a blessing in that I was able to help her with my father who had had a series of strokes. After living in 'not so sunny - friendly wise Los Angeles, it was nice to be in a place where every was so openly friendly.

Today, I'm still here, still being blessed daily, I bought a house, I've had car(s) since then, I'm employed, my son has grown into a loved young man and life carries on. I don't know what direction my life would have taken had I stayed in L.A., but at that time, the obvious answer was to come back home.
And I'm so glad I did.






Pics: not mine, but they scream 'home,' don't they? :-)

Monday, August 23, 2010

Live Today....


In keeping w/being in the present moment that I spoke of yesterday, my Daily Word today was right on. Again, sometimes I feel psychic!

Live Today ~ I live this day one precious moment at a time.
I choose to be at ease with the present moment whatever form it happens to take. This is a moment I do not want to miss. If I let my mind linger in the past or stray into the future, I might miss the fullness of what life holds for me right now. I am unable to change the past, so I gently let it be and focus on living. I realize I have plans to make for the future--but I do not live there. I live right here in the present moment. Right now, I have the opportunity to say "yes!" to life, to be alive and aware of the wondrous energy of God coursing through my body. I live this day one precious moment at a time and enjoy the life I've been given. I am grateful for the fullness of my life and for each golden opportunity to live it well.

Give us this day our daily bread.--Matthew 6:11

Amen, amen and amen :-)





Courtesy pic: Be the Change You Want to See in Yourself -Catherine Morgan blog

Sunday, August 22, 2010

what are the odds???...

just when thoughts were running thru my head about a how to put the day into words, I ran into this place, and thought, 'wow...'

i was presently in the moment the entire day! spent about 2 hours walking & made myself acutely aware of the joy in walking the dogs, aware of how my body felt power walking the track, a cooler late summer day, the breeze, smiling, looking folks right in the eye & speaking to everyone @ the walking track, the trees blowing, the sweat tricking down my back & into my eyes, unwinding, sweeping the porch & patio, showering, cooking a great dinner. instead of zoning out mentally, I took everything in. And was amazed. And Blessed. And present.

Hazard!!!....

my son (who is autistic) learned a very hard lesson during high school.

he fell in love w/his teacher.

the lesson, explaining & repercussions were sad

his thoughts were 'why not share what you feel in your heart?'

the experience turned his heart to fear

and now love + "girls" = danger

he says, "no way, Jose, they're evil." :-?

it will change for him when it's time

but meanwhile, my heart cracks a little








Sunday Scribbling word: dangerous


Saturday, August 21, 2010

Only Half of Me....

It's been a lot of years
Been a lot of tears
yet here we stand
not holding hands
you waiting for me
and me waiting for more to be

we've weathered storms
and up and downs
but my heart tells me
i'm just standing around

My inner voice, to whom I try to be true
constantly screams out to me
that you're not for me
and I'm not for you

You are there, trying to prove yourself
I'm holding on to all I have left
your heart is there in your open hand
My heart's on lock-down
Praying for a different plan

Only God knows where this will lead
Cause he knows all that we cannot see
So in the meantime, you're making
future plans
And I'm over here dreaming of
another land.

Sunday Scribbling word: "half-Way"

Friday, August 20, 2010

Sensory travel...

Isn't it funny how a smell or a sound or a taste or a song can completely open your memory box? Once I let myself think on it, I realized:

  • the smell of Dial soap reminds me of living w/my grandmother when I was probably 4 years old
  • a certain smoke reminds me of her coal furnace she used to light
  • songs by the old group, "Bread", remind me of my brother, Curtis - especially "The Guitar Man"
  • the voice of a long-time newscaster on local WHBC reminds me of standing around the radio, PRAYING he would announce major school closings in the winter
  • old fashioned Christmas carols remind me of Christmas growing up & mom would play them on the 'stereo' while there really was snow falling
  • in the stores @ holiday, the 'Christmas candy' (that hard as hell, wavy-ribbon striped stuff) now reminds me of growing up; it sat around in bowls - not the choice stuff - it was usually eaten after all the 'good stuff' was gone & you ate it just cause it was candy
  • the smell of fresh fruit @ Christmas (in bowls)
  • Ditto for 'real' Christmas trees & old bulbs
  • Clinque's Aromatics Elixer - my sister, Sharon :-)
  • distant clouds that look like mountains remind me of the mountains in Burbank
  • lunchboxes & wax paper remind me of my plaid lunchbox I had all thru grade school
  • and lastly, anytime I think of the words 'steak butter', I get nauseated. My ex-hub used to eat steak w/that when I was pregnant. Barf (LOL!)


Sunday Scribblings word-challenge: Time Travel

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Happy Love Thursday!!!

While the lovely Chookooloonks keeps everyone guessing her location & left her vision of love in the sand, I'm giving a Love Thursday shout-out to my love of grape tomatoes. These things are my summertime weakness. Whoever called them 'grape' tomatoes were right cause I pop 'em like grapes, right off the vine!

Can you tell what this spells? :-) I would've spelled it the correct way, but i couldn't stop eating them during arranging, so..... (LOL!)

There is no sincerer love than the love of food. George Bernard Shaw





Disclaimer: I didn't grow these... I scaled the neighbors fence last nite... (ha!) Kidding...

Unplugged....

Greetings all! It's a beautiful, late summer morning her in the Big O-H! This is a past Sunday Scribbling challenge called "Toys."




Remember this thing? Think way, way back when you could actually own a toy that did not require any type of battery. In fact, you almost preferred they didn't require batteries because in my day, parents weren't privy to keeping their children stocked w/batteries like we do today for our kids. On Christmas morning, you better damn sure hoped that your parents gave thought to the toy "Santa" brought for you included batteries. Otherwise, that toy was pretty much rendered useless until one of the parents 'got around' to getting some.

Child + Christmas morning + waiting on parents to "get around to batteries" = disappointment in its purest form.


In today's world, we keep 'family-sized' packs of batteries on hand for all things electronic for our children. At one point, the son had a remote control car, a remote control truck, a remote control dinosaur, a racing track, a DiscMan, games (Operation, etc.), DVD player remote... I should've owned stock in Energizer.

But this treasure from the past provided hours upon hours of awesome fun w/nothing more required than to move your index finger & put your eyeballs up to the view-see-er-thing. Inside, you were transformed to your own silent movie theater with subtitles! You actually felt like you were 'there'. I remember my grandmother had reels of Niagra Falls that we would sit & share. I remember being mesmerized - I felt like I was right there @ the Falls.

Today's children (& kids way before now) wouldn't be caught DEAD w/this "nerdy, totally weird, what-am-I-sposed-to-do-with-this; what does 'it do'?" type of thing. They couldn't relate to being unplugged. Just another reason why I'm SO glad I didn't grow up in this age that demand to be constantly, freshly 'entertained.' The thought of my parents worrying about me being bored makes me roll on the floor w/laughter.

I snatched this ViewMaster outta the pile when the son had a mental growth spurt & we donated all things "toys." Good move, huh? Something tells me I knew one day I would have a story to tell.


Long live the 'unplugged' toys!!! :-)


Monday, August 16, 2010

The View...



Greetings! It is a glorious day out today her in the Hall of Fame city! Temps & humidity have dropped considerably making it a perfect day.

Found a gem of a new site called Sunday Scribblings designed to give you blog topic ideas. I'm up for the challenge & hopefully will keep you all interested in reading my psycho-babble :-)

This is my view from my porch and yard at dawn. I love being the first person up & out in my neighborhood. I like to take my coffee & camera out & catch the world waking up. Of course, the birds & bees have been up, so the only sounds are them & me slurping coffee. It's in those quiet, precious moments that I take the time to sit and thank God for all;
  • waking me in my right mind;
  • giving thanks that I'm able to get out of bed (there are many that can't)
  • we have our health
  • we have breakfast to eat before we start the day
  • we have clean water to drink & bathe in (keep Haiti & other war/disaster torn places in your prayers. there is SO much we take for granted here in America)
  • we have employment to provide what we need (again - many, many folks don't; pray for them, too)
  • we travel safely through the day & return to our homes to relax & have dinner
  • I thank God & let him know that I'm acutely aware that my every movement, being, thoughts & breaths are marked & measured by his Grace & he cannot be thanked enough
  • I ask Him to stay in my heart & soul throughout the day and trust that he will
That perfect 1/2 hour of total meditation & awareness of being in the moment gives me the strength I require to get through each and every day.

Amen.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Happy Love Thursday!!!

Love Thursday time!! The lovely Chookooloonks has a different point of love for this 'love' day. I put in my 2 cents @ her place, but thought over here I'd give off some 'teddy love.' These are just 2 of about 20 I have in my office. All sizes, shapes & colors. It started w/one I felt sorry for @ the dollar store cause he only had 1 ear. Next thing I know, every time I would leave my seat & come back, there was a little bear on my chair.

When life gives you bears, make bear love.. (LOL!)

You can't always sit in your corner of the forest and wait for people to come to you... you have to go to them sometimes.” Winnie the Pooh

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A Letter to My Younger Self....


To: Tracey (17 years)
From: Tracey (47 years)

Dear Tracey,

it's me, you at 47! doesn't that sound funny? considering you stare @ yourself & wonder what on EARTH you will look like @ 25-30. Don't worry; you still look okay. In fact, you probably look better because you have that 47 year old confident look of being relaxed in your skin & you still have your big smile w/all of your real teeth! Yay!

In spite of how flawed you find yourself right now, you are in the best health right now that you'll ever be. Pay attention, treat your body right w/only good things, cherish your perky boobs & your flat belly...

Here are 40 randoms I wanna share w/your for your future:
  1. Go to college. Study to be a nurse or something that will always be in demand. That way later when the economy goes to hell in a handbasket, you'll always be able to find work;
  2. College will also give you exposure you sorely need. Since you flew totally under the radar @ all thru school & kept socializing to a min, you NEED to be surrounded w/all types of new, young life. When did you get so shy?
  3. Get a goal. I know you could never decide on what to do w/your future all throughout your school years, but you need something to work toward
  4. Forget young men right now. I know you think you'll die if you don't have {fill in the blank}. You won't die; one day you'll turn 47...
  5. No matter how you think you feel & how you have felt, you have not been in love
  6. When you move to California @ 19 w/sister, Sharon, grow up & don't be so dependent on her. Use her as an example & use her resources to further yourself growth-wise.
  7. While living in L.A., learn & soak up all of the culture & history of such a beautiful place as opposed to how you look, where you go, what stars you see or compare yourself to people. Hell, it's Los Angeles - there will be a lot of beautiful women in a thongs & roller blades that will make you feel like 2-ton tina, which will drive you to eat an entire 6-pk of Klondike Bars. Get over it
  8. When you end up working @ a pretty cool ins. co. in Glendale & living in Burbank, buckle down & seriously save for a car. You could've taken classes & advanced yourself @ work if you had a car to get to classes...
  9. You're gonna end up meeting a guy. You shouldn't marry him but you do. It sucks & doesn't last cause you're both too young & selfish, but you do have a beautiful baby.
  10. And believe it or not - in all the time you dreamed of leaving your hometown, you end up taking your child & going right back
  11. You'll realize that your mother is just a woman. Just like you. She has hopes, fears, dreams, etc. And she was young & stupid like you. Make sure you listen to her mama-wit
  12. Even though you always thought your step-father was satan, after he dies, you realize he was the last of the 'real men.' Men who stand up for themselves; say what's on their mind & basically aren't wimps.
  13. Your child is mentally disabled, but you hang in there & do what you have to do. He turns out to be a fine young man
  14. You actually buy a house! You could've never done it in L.A.
  15. You'll be lonely & bored. However, please take your time & find a man that you can love w/all your heart. One you can talk to, dream with, pray with, cry with, worship with, & laugh with. This is very, very important
  16. Choose who gets to love you. If they choose you, it should be mutual. If not, go the other way
  17. You're going to be in a very long relationship (20 years so far). And the only thing you'll have from #15 is laughing. Sometimes.
  18. Always own up to your mistakes
  19. YOU are the only one who can make you happy. No matter who or what you wanna blame - the ball's in your court
  20. No matter what relationship you're in; make everything clear up front.
  21. Face everything head-on no matter what & get it over with. Crap you sweep under the rug always comes back & bites you right in the ass no matter how far down the road it is
  22. Try everything you have ever thought you'd wanna try; water color, play guitar, etc.
  23. Along the way, you'll find that you have an emotional wall built around you. Nobody really gets in & you really don't get out. Learn now that you need to let go of all things negative & Let. God.
  24. No matter where you work - stay WAY clear of gossip. It sucks just like in school
  25. You'll eventually stop drinking beer & wine. And guess what? After all these years of thinking it was cool - it's not. And you don't even miss it
  26. Surround yourself w/positive, energetic people. It wears off onto you
  27. Stop smoking. Now.
  28. You'll be a hopeless romantic & will always dream of living 'the classic love story'
  29. Stay current w/your dental & doctor visits. You'll be glad you did
  30. Always own your own place to live so no one can put you out of it
  31. Always be self-sufficient
  32. Be nice to everyone you meet - always. You never know what battle they may be fighting
  33. In spite of how jaded you are about relationships (cause you never learned how to have one), deep down, you really would like to be a wife again, in a healthy marriage
  34. Get into a hobby(ies) & let them be your outlets. Socialize, socialize, socialize
  35. You've always known God; get closer to him. Now
  36. Don't take so long to give your son credit in his disability. Skip that whole depression period you'll have about him & get right to the good part - letting him be who he is. You'll be less of a whinny bitch & the sun will rise & shine the next day. Besides, it's not about you
  37. Do whatever makes you and only you happy.
  38. Be nice to yourself; you're only human
  39. listen to 2 things: a) that 'voice' that you don't really hear out loud, but tells you the obvious loud & clear - listen to it. It's both God & common sense, and b) when you stomach feels like somebody punched you in it - follow it. It's your instinct & it's usually 99.9% right
  40. don't be afraid to l-i-v-e!



Courtesy pic of D. & T. Ross~Essence magazine

Monday, August 9, 2010

Inner celebration...


Today is my one month anniversary of no alcohol intake. I don't mention it to anyone (unless they ask). My follow-up blood work is scheduled for 8/20/10. Even if my red blood cell numbers are down, I cannot return to having anything to drink. I have been too resolved to keep it out of my life, and my health depends on it. It's also interesting watching "D" struggle w/his own health issues based on my changing. It's definitely spun our relationship around 360 degrees. I know that red wine is good for you & an occasional drink here & there can't hurt, but I know me. And I know the only way any of it can be good for me is to leave it right where it is. On the stores shelves.


So as long as the sun shines, let there be sun tea!! With crushed lemons & ice, of course!

A Club of Two.....

Good day all! :-)

Ssshhh.......I belong to a secret club.

No one else knows about it except for the other member. Membership applications are no longer being accepted; meetings are held daily, at the same location. Breakfasts, lunches, dinners, desserts & assorted snacks are always served.

There are plenty of laughs, silly handshakes, hugs administered throughout the day, goofy voices, 'break-your-neck' dance moves, tons of drum beats, movies & sitcoms shared, chores, talks, tears, attitude-adjustments, haircuts, poster hangings, trophy arranging, random baseball games to be watched, room cleanings, shoot-outs @ the basketball court, long, long walks, 'hikes' in the woods, baseball, softball, basketball & track seasons to be attended, Skittles to be eaten, Slurpees to be drank, size 13-tennis shoes, spikes & team {___________} to be bought (fill in the blank), dreams & wishes to be prayed for. Oh, and there is no age limit.

22 years ago when my esteemed club member was diagnosed as autistic, i thought my world would crack in two. Why is it when our children are anything less than what we think of as 'normal', do we blame ourselves? And boy oh boy - the effort I put into pretending like he was 'normal.' I remember dreading teacher conferences because it crashed everything I had so carefully constructed: 'he's just a little slow - he'll catch up.' If I wasn't in tears before I left the
conference, you can believe i would be driving away from it. Everything I looked forward to doing w/him had to be adjusted to his terms, if he would be able to handle it. I felt overwhelmed, guilty and depressed.

In spite of my stubborn-ness of accepting my child the way he was, I had to slowly check things off the list:
  • he did not like attention, so birthday parties & social gatherings featuring him were out. God forbid a professional photo-shoot (yes, that was a bad day...)
  • he was painfully shy, so communication with others was out
  • loud noises freaked him out, so we had to be careful where we went
Life moved on w/me in denial (in spite of attending parent-mentoring classes) & the son moving along (I enrolled him in early intervention 'school' @ the age of 3) When he turned 9 years old & I signed him up for Special Olympics baseball. When I met all those folks whose children had disabilities, I cried. I had felt so alone early on, plus, I felt SO STUPID for being such an ass about my boy who had a learning/speech delay when there were families whose children were PHYSICALLY impaired; who would never be able to walk, play ball, feed themselves, dress themselves. And those parents were the most proud, smiling, loving people, with outstretched arms. My life was changed For. Ever. Many of them are still today our extended family. Our kids have literally grown up together! I had never had a more comfortable feeling of "us" & "them." Our kids were the "us", we were proud, kicking ass & taking names! (LOL!) We looked @ the parents of "them" and actually pitied them!

I remember the day I truly 'shed' my ignorant skin. Me & son (then 13) were @ the tri-monthly neurologist's visit & the doctor said, 'you may want to make long-term plans for him with his
'mental retardation.'

Those words stung at first. Stung me bad. I could feel that "poor me" thing rising up inside, then it popped like a balloon! It was done & over. Right then & there, I decided to appreciate what my son could do - not what he couldn't do!! That night, I stayed on my knees talking to God until my knees went numb! I apologized to God for not seeing the gift in my beautiful baby; when he needed my guidance the most, I was trying to change him. My mind opened up like a room that had been closed off. I can honestly say that I don't remember who or what I was like before he came into my life, all I know is he has changed me. I strive to be happy, I try to always look up, I'm quick to forgive, I try to always keep a smile on my face, and that childlike innocence will add YEARS to your life. This is how he lives everyday.

Now, as you can see, my baby is a young man and he grows more awesome in my eyes each day. He is a self-taught drummer, an all-around sportsman, a gentleman extarodinaire (he always holds the door & says, 'ladies first'). He graduated from 'regular' public school in 2008 (walked w/the Sr. class), & has been working @ the WorkShops for over a year where he makes his own money. Even though he has choices, for now he opts to continue to live at home. With me. Which is just fine. Because we're having 'club T-shirts' printed up... :-)


Thanks, James, for teaching me how to 'taste the rainbow' ~ Love you, Mom




Very top picture: Son & I after 2009 Breast Cancer Walk. What a guy....

Friday, August 6, 2010

30 things about me....


Greetings! A few randoms off the top of my heads.....

  1. I am ambidextrous ( can use either my left or right hands)
  2. my son is autistic & the smartest, kindest human being i've ever met)
  3. i used to live in Los Angeles
  4. i've been in my current relationship for 21 years
  5. i can type nearly 100 wpm w/nearly no errors
  6. i never had a boyfriend until i met my ex-husband @ age 23
  7. i can grow a perfect set of 10 nails at will
  8. i played clarinet in jr. & sr. high schools
  9. underneath my wedding dress, i wore white fishnet stockings & white lace ankle boots
  10. i eat spinach everyday
  11. when i was little, i used to eat plaster (which probably explains a lot)
  12. i am terribly afraid of mice/rats
  13. i love 'old' school jazz (Stan Getz, Monk, Oscar Peterson, Coltrane, Nancy Wilson, Chet Baker, Kenny Burrell, etc.)
  14. i can spell almost anything
  15. other than lipstick, i've never worn any type of makeup in all my 47 years
  16. i once had a drawing on display in our city's local art gallery
  17. sometime (& more often than not), i think of things before they happen. Freaky....
  18. i have always thought my teeth are 'too big' & usually cover my mouth when I laugh a big laugh
  19. i used to dream of being a kindergarten teacher
  20. i was a notorious tomboy (& still am in a grown-up way)
  21. i would play basketball everyday if i had the time
  22. when I was a teenager in bible school, a boy pinched my butt & I beat the shit outta him w/my Bible. Yes... the Holy Bible; King James Version. A mighty sword, indeed :-)
  23. my mother is truly my best friend
  24. anxiety attacks keep me from driving on the freeway (hopefully this is temporary & will pass)
  25. i choose fruit over candy any day
  26. i used to go to charm school (yeah... that worked.... Not!)
  27. i still have my doll, "Jane West," that i got for my birthday 38 years ago. today, she sits on my dresser
  28. i tossed my wedding ring in the Los Angeles river
  29. i still watch the Wizard of Oz - yearly
  30. I have a gift of writing letters &/or cards that will "lift you right outta your seat!" (so I've been told :-)


Picture courtesy of me taken by me @ work 8/5/10. Real busy, as you can see

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Love Thursday..."Every Generation...."

Good morning! Since the fabulous Chookooloonks is off in NY City @the 2010 BlogHer Conference, I'm gonna give my own "Love Thursday" shoutout.

This is my beautiful great-niece, Sidnei, & her equally beautiful daughter, Amiyah. These two ladies are the tail-end of five generations. Even though Sid is a very young, single mother & I know things can't be easy for her, I have to admire the way she struggles to make her way in this world to take care of herself & her child.

So, today, Happy Love Thursday, Sid. The love you share & teach to Amiyah will stay instilled in her forever.
A mother's arms are made of tenderness and children sleep soundly in them. -Victor Hugo

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Now I feel better.....

I had a few blue days where I just felt sick & tired of everything. In my fit of 'blah-ness,' I removed myself from the 29 Days of Giving Project. I was hyped when I started, then it stressed the hell outta me to document every time I 'gave.' Then I didn't feel like it was worth writing, yadda, yadda, yadda...

Then I saw part of this post from my past GOJ (gift of jewel) girl, Sharon, who said this:

  • I haven't posted about my giving lately. I've even been posting irregularly on the 29 Gifts website. I'm still giving, but my "gives" aren't anything out of the ordinary, so they haven't felt blog-worthy. That is not what I signed up for though. I signed up to do the giving and to tell about it. Now, I must admit that I don't like the telling part much. I prefer to do my giving and keep it private. In the next rounds of giving, I plan to do just that.
I couldn't have said it any better!

I'm gonna go re-join & stop beating myself up...

Two things I believe....

In keeping today with this fabulous post I read today, I am naming only two things 'I believe' off the top of my head (because I cannot think of 20 this very moment)..
.

I believe that when you're blessed enough to have a disabled child, that God knew exactly what he was doing when he gave that child to you because he knew that you could handle it. You may not think you can in the beginning, but..... you can.
And you do....


... and that no matter how long that child is on earth,
even when they no longer are children and
become young men & women needing guidance,
usually for the rest of their lives,
God will and does take tender care of them,
even if they don't understand who He is....

Then again.. maybe they DO understand who He is
and us 'normal' people can't comprehend how the could know
but believe me.... they know and most of them
walk in the light of His loving kindness
& teaches us all a lesson
everyday