Kid in The Corner

Do you know someone who feels alone? Do you have someone in your life; your child, your student, a friend, a partner, or someone you pass by occasionally, that you can tell is suffering?

Last weekend I had the honor of performing at a benefit for Kid in The Corner and I MUST SHARE their mission and message of kindness, inclusion, community, and hope. This organization exists because of one parent’s worst nightmare.  more “Kid in The Corner”

Mothers, Gratitude, Regret, and Wishful Thinking

Tomorrow on our cul-de-sac we’ll be celebrating Thanksgiving. A 24-pound turkey, Al, will not be thawed by tomorrow. Dinner may be late for our small gathering this year of 15. I am thankful to have a warm, welcoming home for 15 people to sit down together and laugh more than we cry -or drink.

My mother passed away this past Nov. 6th at 7:30 AM. My alarm went off at 7:30 and as I rolled over to hit snooze I noticed I wasn’t coughing up small hamsters from my lungs for the very first time in 3 months. When I stood up from my all too comfy bed I was hit by a weight of depression I hadn’t been experiencing for the last couple of months, so I noticed.

I got a call at 12:10 PM. letting me know my mother had passed away a bit unexpectedly. It was nice of her to take my cough with her. I’m sure it’s just a weird coincidence. But, still, it’s weird.

When my husband, the-very-patient-man, and I decided to have children I vowed to do everything I could to give my children a different childhood than mine. I succeeded and failed.

Now that one is in college and one a recent college graduate living her dream life in California, I have too much time to miss: their magical imaginations, shopping for their food and entertainment and education and positive reinforcements. I miss the few and far-between moments of my own mother’s attempts to do the same for me. My ‘nows’ are often made up of ‘thens’ and the wishful thinking that I could have done better, at everything.  I miss the way our life was, even in the midst of loving the way our life is. more “Mothers, Gratitude, Regret, and Wishful Thinking”

How to Sit

Okay, I’ll sit in this chair and hold you while you nuzzle my neck and suck your thumb.
Even though it’s 5:30 in the afternoon and I really should do the breakfast dishes before I start making dinner.
Even though I just made you the greatest fort beneath the kitchen table.
Okay, I’ll sit here and hold you until you’re awake enough to venture forth into the unknown kingdom under table.
If you do climb off my lap to go inside the fort, I will: do the dishes, make dinner, mop the floor, organize all your toys and clothes, paint your dresser, read a book, play solitaire on the computer, call my mother, transfer all my phone numbers into my new phone book I got two Christmases ago, complete all photo albums with captions, take a shower and feel guilty that I’m not with you in the fort.
If you don’t go inside, I’ll sit here and hold you.
I should be able to stay here in this chair without everything I haven’t done screaming in my head.
I should be able to love this.
Someday, I’ll be in this chair alone.
When my arms are no longer your comfort, I can: do the breakfast dishes, make dinner, convert your bedroom into a gym, read all my books, call all my friends listed in my old phone book while I’m clean and ironed and made-up and glancing through my perfectly organized photo albums.
Knowing that I only get to hold you for a brief moment doesn’t make it any easier to stay here. I am all to aware that chaos reigns in my own fort, in fact, in my entire kingdom.
Dear God, help me never choose to let go of this precious little body
so that I might hold a dirty dish.
Oh, your little hand, stroking my cheek.
Please stop smiling at me.
When you smile…my choice is made.
Here is where I am.
Here is where I stay.

This is how to sit.

I wrote this 11 years ago. I tried to build my 13 year old daughter a fort today and she wouldn’t go in! I guess I should have let her off my lap…Really don’t know how or when she got so tall. She is still precious, even at 13. I did let go of her 11 years ago to do the dishes and I still regret it. On the plus side, I have taught her how to do the dishes, so I can now sit-even though, it’s almost always alone, and everything I haven’t done is still there to taunt me.