Such a weird holiday for me. As a mom I’m the one who pays attention to dates/holidays/birthdays & remembers (or in my case doesn’t remember in time) to send cards…the one who worries about planning the meal…the one who frets about gifts (what kind, how much, for the love of God is everyone even?!). Cruelly, I lost my mom in 2009. So of course ever since then Mother’s Day lost 50% of it’s meaning…the other 50% breaks down like this:
25% is me realizing I’m a mom & I love my kids more than life, so that provides some meaning.
25% is faking like I’m so so happy that day for the kids’ benefit, which in turn makes me feel guilty toward them.
See why I’d rather just skip it? I feel bad saying that, as if I don’t love my kids enough or something. It’s a ridiculous, exhausting circle of emotions. It’s just a tainted day for me.
And then the gift thing…although this year is by far our worst financial year ever, we’ve never been rich…we’ve always been on a budget. My Husband, however, has champagne taste on a beer budget. Every year he asks what I want & I honestly tell him: “I don’t want you to spend money. Period. Seriously. I’d much, much rather have everyone get along & do little favors for me all day & maybe the dishes. I don’t want to have to worry about what we’re going to do without money.”
So of course he completely ignores me, buys a gift anyway (65% of the time he lucks out & gets something I will use or did want), and I worry like crazy about what we’ll do about this or that now that he spent “x” amount of dollars. It’s sweet & his heart is in the right place; I appreciate his determination & thoughtfulness. I just wish people would listen to me once in awhile.
Anyway, back to mother’s day. I know you’ve heard it all before but I’ll reiterate: appreciate your mom if you still have her. Recognize that her annoying habits or questions or whatever won’t always be there to annoy you and I promise you, you’ll miss them when they’re gone (just like high school!). Make time for your mom, do things to help your mom, tell her how important she is to you. Life as you know it could change in the blink of an eye; remember that next time your mom wants you to show her over the telephone how to search the web on her new smartphone.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the mom’s out there–old moms or young; new mom’s or seasoned pros; birth moms or step-moms; everyday you make a difference in the life of your child/children & everyday you survive the hardest job on the planet: motherhood. So pat yourself on the back & do something you want to…you’re doing a great job, keep up the good work!
And to all the mom’s in my life (even though 98% of them don’t read my blog…what is with me & percentages today?!): Happy Mother’s Day! I hope it’s wonderful –just like you!–and I love you!
(Normally I would insert a photo or two of my mom here but I don’t currently have access to any…boo)
I’m such a scatter-brain. I’ve been working on a different post off & on all day (a bitch-fest, as per my usual!) but can’t seem to find my way to the end, so I thought I’d take a break, try a totally different (happier) subject, & use the 40 minutes I have before the rugrats get home.
I’ve noticed lately that A–our youngest & only boy–refers to C & I as “my Dad” or “my Mom” when talking with/to his friends. I find it bittersweet…it’s cute that he’s so ‘mature’ now that he’s the big 6 & doesn’t want to say “mommy” & “daddy” anymore……but it also makes me sad, of course. It’s the same feeling as the other firsts: first day of school, first lost tooth, etc. You automatically want the best for your kids, which in turn means you want them to grow up (not much choice anyway–haha) intelligent & beautiful & to be a good person…but sometimes those little signs of growing up can make ya a lil misty-eyed.
Granted, he still calls me “Mommy” when addressing me/another family member and it’s the same for C and “Daddy”, so I’m glad of that at least. The girls dropped the Y’s a while ago, I knew it would only be a matter of time once A went into school too. Understandable; no one wants to be the “loser” Friend who refers to their parents in a baby-ish way. They still do the Y version at home but I can tell they do it for our benefit. The other night D was telling a story & started to say “Dad” but then stretched it into “Daddy”.
So the question becomes…do you just sit back & let nature take it’s course, let them banish the Y’s for good when they decide to?
Do you put a spotlight on it by telling them it’s okay to drop the Y’s if they want (if you can bring yourself to do it!)?
I’m always fretting over things just like this & it’s partly because I have no one to turn to and ask. My mom is gone & that left a huge hole in my entire life…she was always the one I’d turn to for anything. I don’t talk with my Aunt (Mom’s sister) as much as I used to because I hate being on the phone (can’t hear, too chaotic) & she won’t email with me because she doesn’t like to type (despite the fact that she’s literally on Facebook alllllll day playing games…); anyway…I don’t want to make this post all sad & dreary, I was just clarifying part of why I’m so…indecisive? Unsure of what decision would be best? I like to see as many sides (or opinions) as possible when faced with a decision–no matter how small–because I just like to know the whole of it. You know? I believe some may call that anal….
I don’t remember any sort of conversation with either of my parents about what I called them; I’ve always used “Dad” & “Mom”, and I’m sure probably the Y versions as a baby although I don’t remember it. I also don’t remember my own transition…in ninth grade a passing fad was to call your mom “Mommy” but I didn’t participate long because it felt weird, like I was trying to be something I wasn’t. Sometimes I wish I could’ve used “Mama” off & on (that’s what she called her mom) because I think it’s cutesy & country; and I did occasionally but it never stuck, never became the name.
So…to say something or to not say something…that is the question. I want them to be comfortable, not inadvertently pushed into using a name/names they don’t feel fit anymore simply because they know we like it.
Yesterday marked the (unbelievably) 5th year since my Mom’s sudden passing. Unfortunately if I allow it, memories of that day & the following days (and weeks) haunt me until I’m literally so stressed out by it that I find myself suddenly waking from too-real nightmares, tears pouring down my face. I miss her so much I can’t even type that without getting that little nose tickle you get when you’re about to cry. And watery eyes. As most mothers are she was a huge part of my life, of my children’s lives. She was my rock, my cheering section, my voice of reason, my memory bank, my best friend…at the risk of sounding too “lover-ish” she was my everything.
Then poof…she was gone. What a cruel, cruel world it can be.
Luckily despite various paths in life, my sister & I have found ourselves living in the same town (not our hometown) & have therefore developed a much closer, deeper relationship than we ever had before. She is 6 years younger than me so there has always been a natural gap between our interests but now as adults we find ourselves on a lot of the same pages, which is nice. It’s extremely comforting to me to know that I have someone who has my back. We’re old enough now to surpass any petty fights, although we never have any. I can confidently say (and rest assured that it’s true) that we will always be there for the other, no matter what. Mom passing away helped bridge that age gap as well…we were both suddenly thrust into a forces membership in the “One Deceased Parent”‘s club, so we are together on a level most people can’t access until later in life.
For the past 5 years I’ve struggled to find an appropriate term for recognizing this terrible day in our lives. It’s not that I want to celebrate it; I just feel guilty if it goes unnoticed…like we’re forgetting her, or the worst day of my life wasn’t truly the worst day of my life. I’ve also struggled to think of a way to honor her: prepare a favorite meal of hers (although I’m ashamed to say I’m quickly forgetting what those were)? Buy some balloons & release them to the heavens, with other without letters attached? Exchange letters with my sister containing memories or thoughts on what our mother would think of us now? Get lost in memories by sifting through pictures & eventually sobbing myself to sleep? Nothing seems fitting. I have stumbled upon a name however…”Momiversary”. It doesn’t depict any depressing thoughts of death, yet it also doesn’t imply a joyous celebration. It is an anniversary, and it is for our Mom. I just happened to have a lightbulb this year.
I wish I had pictures to share…Mom was definitely a camera ducker but she was beautiful & when you were lucky enough to catch a real smile it is contagious…I can’t help but smile back. All of my photos are packed up or on the computer (to which Hubby misplaced the cord); I hate that I can’t post any here. I have no grand final thoughts on this post…I’m thankful for family & my sister…I ache inside for my Mom, I can feel my heart crumble when I think of her & the looming void now in my life…I urge all of you that still have your Mom to seriously cherish her, don’t let small things annoy you, remember that she won’t always be there, don’t take her life for granted because the cold hard truth is that you never know when her life might be gone…leaving you with open wounds, an unfillable void in your soul and more regrets than any human being should have to bear.
I’ve been inspired by juicy gossip a family mishap to post a blog on underage drinking. Recently my niece (who blatantly cares nothing for me, or my immediate family, which as a side note is really sad because I truly enjoyed having a niece a few years ago-more family drama except on my husband’s side-and I miss having that in my life) was discovered to have some empty bottles of cheapo vodka hidden in what I’m sure she thought were strategic places in her room. She also had a shot glass handily wrapped in her “delicates” drawer.
I’m not going to expand on all the different issues involved in this situation; no, this post is designed more for the selfish reason of recording a few of my own teenage memories for the annals of history, just in case I ever become a smidgen as historically famous as Marie Antoinette (for instance) and the historians will need something to come back to and assist them with piecing together my daily life. Hey, it could happen.
So my sister was telling me all the juicy details about this mishap (she is her step-mom by the way, so that compounds everything for both of them) & I started thinking later on about when I was this girl’s age (…the edge of seventeen) & actually earlier. I had collected shot glasses & had them on display around my room. I had 1 or 2 empty booze bottles just to round out the coolness factor, and a wine bottle with one of those drippy candles in it. I hadn’t drank the alcoholic contents & I didn’t use the shot glasses. Literally…decoration.
My room was decorated in this fashion for quite awhile, until I grew out of it.
Then I started remembering one of my ballsiest schemes ever. You have to know that I was not a very rebellious kid…at all. I’m the first born/oldest so I understood it was my duty to go to school, stay out of trouble, get good grades, be a good example for my younger sister. But I guess every kid has a little bit of rebel in them, and mine was to concoct a fabulous plan where my friends, boyfriend and I skipped school & stayed home drinking Budweiser all day. I know, I know but hellfire…I was 14! This was exciting shit. So I kicked it off by convincing my mom I was too terribly sick for school. Win! She let me stay home, no questions asked because I was such a cunty goody two shoes good kid. Then I called my friend, who was with her older boyfriend (aka the beer buyer) & I’m fuzzy on the details now but after my mom left for work everyone was supposed to meet at my place. (I can’t remember if the beer buyer was just going to blatantly park in the driveway or across the street at the little kids school…probably the driveway)
Everyone came & it was time for phase 2 of the great plan-no celebrating yet! Next we all had to call the school for each other to excuse our absences; beat the school at their own game…before they could call our parents to see where we were, we’d provide them the answer! Very common practice for kids missing school. I don’t remember who did what (beer guy of course didn’t need anyone to call for him; might I just point out how questionable I’m finding this person nowadays looking back, that he so easily went along with a bunch of 14 year olds?!) but I did call & pretend to be my boyfriend’s grandma (his mom wasn’t around; I realize now it would’ve been better to have creepy beer guy be his dad)…the school totally bought it! We were home free! Able to lounge in my room, sip our Buds like kings & queens, & relive our success; my bf had brought along his dorky friend who was making us all laugh. I assured my friends that my trusty canine would bark at the slightest notion of someone pulling in the driveway or opening the front door.
So imagine the mild heart pounding heart attack I experienced when there was beating on my locked bedroom door. Imagine the frozen looks of shock & bewilderment & “What the fucking hell do we do now?!” all over our faces. Then chaos. It didn’t sound like my mom but that was the only person it could be, right? The dorky friend literally jumped into my closet & was peering out from between my clothes; the rest of us started throwing the beers in a book bag then shoved them in the closet with him & closed the door. Meanwhile my mom has started bellowing at me to open the G.D. door, so at least it confirmed it wasn’t an ax murderer who liked drunk teenagers. Eventually I opened the door; boy was she pissed. White hot rage would best describe it. She started threatening to throw creepy beer guy in jail so he hauled ass…I never…ever…saw him again. My friend was a little sad but she ended up being a lesbian anyway so it probably didn’t matter much. Then my mom announced to us that she would be taking us to school as we were. Drunk.
On the way to school she revealed how it had all gone down: when I called as a grandmother, the nosy bitch office lady didn’t think the voice sounded old enough. So she checked the absentee log & saw where my (real) mom had called in for me. Apparently the school staff was stalking us because she then claimed she knew we were dating & thought something was fishy so she called my mom at work, filling her in on the whole thing. Mom snuck home, didn’t shut her car door (she parked right outside my room by the way…I’m such a deaf idiot), & the dog betrayed me by greeting her when she came in, which I hadn’t considered, and therefore staying quiet. So we get to the school & those ass clowns had called the cops! To give us fucking breathalyzers. Just to get us in trouble with the school too. We all failed & then the Principal informed us that we were suspended in, like, 3 different ways…2 days out, varying days in. Then for some reason we were told to go tell all of the teachers whose classes we were supposed to be in at the time. I think that was just for the adults entertainment. Either way it backfired because it gave us all the opportunity to show our friends that we really were drunk, therefore lending credibility to the rumors that would fly. I have to admit that being able to brag that I came to school drunk & got a breathalyzer & then suspended did give me a little bit of a bad ass quality. Then I went back home & probably fought with my mom for awhile before passing out.
So that’s my first real drinking story. Unfortunately I can’t remember what my parents did to punish me, and my mom isn’t here to help me out. Back then I never thought it would be a cherished memory…I felt like my life was over. But I can only smile now, and be glad it’s part of my memory lane. Do you have any stories from being a teenager??
Easter has come and gone, and I’m relieved. When the hell did Easter turn into a spring Christmas extravaganza?? I don’t know if it was my dread of having to spend money or the ever continuing after effects of losing my mom or just plain laziness but I could not get in the holiday spirit this year. Sure we made some homemade Pinterest crafts to decorate with a little but we didn’t even bother getting our other decorations out. We didn’t even get the kids’ baskets out of the closet until “Easter eve”!
When I was a kid our Easter tradition was to go to my nanny’s, along with my aunt, uncle & 2 cousins. I remember it being so cozy & exciting & fun…all of us getting together, catching up, dyeing eggs, watching TV, the kids being silly, squeezing in quality time with my nanny…the feelings & smells (eggs boiling, Easter dinner prep, my nanny’s house) & memories I have are hard to put into words. Family time. Togetherness. Relaxation. I loved it and now I miss it so so much. First, in 2008, my nanny died. And it felt like that threw so many things into chaos, including holiday traditions. What do we do now? Since my husband, kids & I had moved in to help care for her, we were still living in her house. So our first Thanksgiving without her consisted of us & my mom at this huge dining room table where countless Easter & Thanksgiving dinners had held court. It was completely different yet eerie remnants of familiarity remained. Then, we didn’t even get another Easter with my mom because she passed away the following February. It rocked my world & still does to this day.
I had thought maybe my aunt would take over the family get together responsibilities but she didn’t, except for once when we had it at her house because we were staying there for awhile. Essentially, after losing my nanny & mom, the responsibility fell to me. Which I have mixed feelings about…on one hand I love it because I’m a control freak & it makes me feel special to reign our family in and force quality togetherness down their gullets. But on the other hand…I constantly question if I’m doing things the right way (aka the way it’s always been done in our family), I question choices that my mom would’ve made, and I miss them & the old traditions so terribly bad it gives me a lump in my throat. I feel like a total let down in the Holiday Manager department, yet just like the whole birth right storyline in the Lion King it’s as if it’s fallen to me to do it.
This post was totally depressing. And I can’t decipher an actual point. It’s more of a deluge of words & feelings. Thanks for listening.
As your reward, here are some Easter pictures of my amazing family. Hope you & yours had a good holiday!
PS~ We had my sister & her family (husband & 2 kids) over for egg dyeing & easter dinner, I was just so busy I didn’t get a chance to take any pics. Boo! But that is our new tradition, 2 (maybe 3??) years running & I’m so grateful for it.