Posts Tagged ‘sons’

As your sons, in my case, begin to grow up and spread their wings it is one of the hardest parts of being a parent. And people telling you doesn’t prepare you. You have to learn it on you own.

Both of my sons still live at home. But they have their driver’s licenses. And so I no longer have to drive them to karate or baseball or marching band. I don’t have to drop them off at their friends’ homes, or set up play dates. They do all of this themselves now.

They drive themselves to work, to college classes, or to high school. And I am so proud of the young men that they are. And I am so grateful that they are here and no significant harm has ever come to them.

But this is hard. Letting them go and start to really walk on their own. Learning to walk and watching them as they toddled around the living room with baby gates to protect them was the easy part. Watching them use their two feet to take them so far in life even at these young adult ages is the hard part.

Oh how I love my sons.

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And it should never have been allowed to.

I was in a grocery store in 2010. I saw the cover of a magazine and wondered how the hell a picture of my son got on the cover of People. I literally stopped in my tracks. Then I read the headline. I cried right there. And the case of Kyron Horman has haunted me since.

Kyron is just like my sons. And Oldest Son resembles him. I know they aren’t identical, but it’s something about the joy and pure happiness that exudes from both of them that I see.

So it really made me aware of safety, although obviously the situation with Kyron is very complicated. But the quickness of not knowing what happened to one’s son and how quickly it could happen struck a chord. It made me aware of the blessings I have that I have been able to watch my sons grow up, reach and celebrate life milestones. Kyron should have graduated high school last year. Oldest Son will graduate in two weeks. We got to go the senior scholarship night two nights ago. We are getting to celebrate these wonderful life milestones, and Kyron’s parents still don’t know where their son is.

As I follow this case, and read the different theories and possibilities, I feel so sad for Kyron’s parents. No one should have to go through this. And while I obviously don’t know what actually happened, someone does. And that someone should talk now.

I hope and pray Kyron comes home today. And I will continue to do that until Kyron comes home.

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Oh dear gentle reader(s), if there are any of you left. 2020 has been quite a year. And for me it marks my half-century. I look at my sons regularly wondering how they can be 15 and 17 years old, how does one of them have a driver’s license? And where did my little babies go? It’s natural as a parent to reflect on the passage of time for their children. And as I spoke with my dad today I realized as he said, jokingly, “50? One of my kids is 50?” that I am feeling what he has been feeling for years.

And as I am the type to reflect, I thought about hitting the mid-century mark.

First, I’m quite thrilled to be on top of the ground and not under it. Second, I am so glad to be with Hubby and sons to celebrate it.

I had planned to do a girls’ getaway to New Orleans to mark the occasion. Total Hallmark movie plans, rent a little house, be tourists, long talks till the wee morning hours about life and all the things that girls like to talk about when they gather in their little covens.

That clearly didn’t happen.

Tonight I suspect we will eat homemade Hershey’s chocolate cake made by Hubby. Then I think we will watch a Halloween movie because I have been derelict in that this season, much to Younger Son’s disappointment. The house is decorated, inside and out, costumes are almost done being sewn, but we haven’t read a word of Poe nor watched any scary movies. But it’s 2020.

And that is the fatigue I am feeling. I have gotten quite comfy with blaming the year. I haven’t accomplished some great project, written the great American novel, or even written regularly for this. What have I been doing this year? What have I been doing my whole life? And I realized, I’ve been living it. I’ve been enjoying it, the little things, the big things. I’ve walked through sadness and grief. I’ve laughed my ass off. I’ve watched in awe as my sons have grown up. I’ve loved and laughed for twenty years with Hubby.

I’ve lived with schizophrenia and not let it control what I do. I am fighting my fears about dementia and its history in my family. I’ve walked a path of advocacy that my sons can follow no matter what the reason they need to advocate for themselves. I’ve been scared, I’ve been relieved, I’ve been probably every emotion we humans have ever named.

I try to make sense of everything that is going on in the world. It overwhelms one. But I do try. I reflect inward to try to examine myself as that is where I can start change. I look at how I can shape my sons, I look at how life passes from one generation to the next.

And the soundtrack to all of this is from that last place I would have guessed if you had asked me back in 1987. But he wrote a whole album to help one reflect on 50, so I couldn’t ignore it. He would never, so I certainly couldn’t let him down either. Then he made another album to make sure I remember it’s a Beautiful Life.

And the album is amazing. The voice is even better than it was in 1987. My sons were introduced to Rick Astley because of the pinata in a Psych episode. Then Older Son grew into his voice and is a baritone so he does a pretty mean impression of Rick Astley. And then we discovered the 50 album. And then Beautiful Life. And then he treated us to “Titanium” during this world lockdown, which I sing almost every day.

But the song that helps me each day, ok, there are several, but if I had to pick, ok, I couldn’t. Here’s the bare minimum line-up: “Try”, “Keep Singing”, “Pray with Me”, “Beautiful Life”, and then “Dance”. In general, these two albums, along with any and all Queen, have been this year’s soundtrack for me. And Older Son and I sing Phantom while Younger Son plays on his euphonium. But I digress.

“Try”. As I have been reflective during 2020 and approaching 50 like a bat out of hell, I keep coming back to this song. I’m half tempted to find a decent karaoke track and pop it up on Youtube, but I don’t know that the world needs me singing it. “Even if I’m broken on the inside…” And there have been times in my life when I felt that was so true. And there are times when nothing makes sense. And there are times I miss my brother so much and wish he had heard this song.

So as I turn 50, I know I need to try. Try something new each day, or do squats, or laugh, or do something to show myself that I have a beautiful life. Then try to share that with the world to add to the beauty rather than add anything else negative. I will try to lift myself out of the funk that started five years ago and has been haunting my dreams with sadness, death, rejection, loss. I will instead focus on my family, my blessings.

“All I know is nothing’s certain
So I’m gonna try, I’m gonna try
It’s only myself that I’m hurting
If I don’t try, if I don’t try

When it feels like all my hopes and dreams are shattered into dust
I remember that the only thing I have to do is trust…” ~Rick Astley

So I try.

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This has been a soothing time for us, with ups and downs as anyone is feeling in these “unprecedented times”. Although, the world has lived through times similar to these before I am sure.

But I am writing about my life right now. It’s hard to let go and realize I don’t have to run somewhere…at any time right now. My body, mind, and spirit are slowly adjusting to it. Things are stressful, Hubby’s work has slowed dramatically, my work has had a decent share of stress. I had one my beloved vestibular migraines from April 9-April 29, so that was fun. But I finally don’t look like I’m drunk while I walk around my house. And happily did not need to drive anywhere because I can’t.

And in this time at home I have rediscovered cards. How did I forget about the joy of cards? Younger Son is mildly obsessed, has over a dozen decks. He has several from a company called Theory Eleven. The cards were so nice I finally broke down and bought myself two decks. Not that I don’t still have my trusty Bee Peppermill deck of cards that I’ve used since my college days.

But these new cards are art. I felt a little guilty when I first shuffled them, starting to break them in. They’re gorgeous. We’ve been playing Go Fish, Palace, Gin, Gin Rummy. I want to remember how to play Spit and War. We also played Uno the other night. And a coworker told me about Pit. I ordered it online, it arrived, and we played it last night. All I can say is our neighbors may think us insane. Shouts of “Trade One! Trade Three! Trade Two!” echoing out of our living room windows last night. We were loud, laughing, and having a grand time. May have scared the dog a bit. Older Son was thrilled to FINALLY win a game.

My goal once the world gets spinning again is to keep this pace as best we can. We usually ate dinner together most nights. We often played games. But there was always a lingering presence of The Things That Need To Be Done, at least in my mind, and then I would speak about The Things That Need To Be Done, removing all of us from the moment. Living in the moment has been a beautiful accident with the way the world is right now. I pledge not to let go of that. This is that chance to see what life can be if one chooses to slow down, appreciate what one has instead of thinking about what one wants, and focus on what really matters.

It’s the simple things, like a beautiful (old) deck of cards.



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Lunch was actually at a little pizza shop. I will never complain about the price of pizza in my hometown again. A pizza in Manhattan requires a small loan. It was really good pizza.

Younger son and I went into New York City with the band and select Chorale for the musical field trip. This year’s show was Hello Dolly starring Bernadette Peters and Victor Garber. I thought the show was phenomenal- great costumes, sets, amazing choreography. And Ms. Peters is phenomenal. And I love Victor Garber. I had the good fortune to see Bernadette Peters in Annie Get Your Gun when a friend of mine was in the cast. It’s great to have seen her in a second show and I don’t know how she has the energy she does at age 70 because I, at age 47, was exhausted just watching the show.

It was a great day with younger son and I had a really fun time making that memory with him at his first Broadway play.

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Okay, first, it automatically capitalized Trump.

Second, this isn’t about politics. It’s about how easily I’ve been avoiding the vile, nasty behavior people have been exhibiting since the election.

On Facebook, I only check my notifications, wish folks happy birthday as needed, and then hop off again. 

Avoid Twitter completely, which I discovered is really freakin’ easy to do.

Technically I have an Instagram thing, but if you follow me, you know how well I took to that form of social waste my time media.

I read articles from BBC and Japan Times, use Messenger a lot, and find I have a lot more time on my hands. Yes, this blog is social media, but since comments are so freakin’ rare, it’s really more of a one-sided social media for me. As one of my friends from college would say, it’s between me and my voices.

It’s my journal nowadays, I suppose. Although I still journal on paper too. I post shit I don’t mind sharing with my five faithful readers.

Updates on some topics…

Wally is sadly still here. PB still hates him, and we all know I’m not fond of him. I did recently realize that although I love bread, the feeling is not mutual. Now, I won’t give that up, but I am going to curb it a bit. And I let myself have chocolate regularly again because when I stopped eating it, I gained ten pounds. Even my doctor was in favor of me taking that back. He realized I was more likely to keep exercising if I still eat chocolate.

Me & the fam have been playing games practically every night. Board games, card games, and sometimes just games on our devices, all in the same room. A little solitary, non-thinking time, but not alone. Together.

Banging my head against the wall at times about my teenage sons, but I know how blessed I am. I have two unique, bright, talented, funny, loving sons who are traveling their life paths to the march of their own drummers. And the time is passing very quickly, so I focus on them. And with how uncool I am now, I have more time for real conversation with Hubby or time to do hobbies that I forgot I enjoyed.

I like living mostly unplugged. It makes it easier to see the good that’s all around.

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I’ve been avoiding Instagram. Well, social media in general, including this blog. I finally logged back into my Instagram and saw this post.


The date at the bottom says: 52 weeks. Yes, a year since I took what would become my final picture of me and my Bear. We saw Bear a lot between this picture (April 1, 2015) and the car accident. But still, some picture had to be my last one with him. This is a pretty good one for it to be. Each time I look at my 15 year clock, I think of him. He had to open the gift-wrapped box in the parking lot, like a little kid, so he could see what the gift was and then, open the box to see the actual clock.

Younger and Older Sons have cried this week. Both miss him so much. Younger son got his baseball jersey today, looked at the number, and was somewhat indifferent, but he didn’t say he disliked it. When I said Bearpaw must have picked it for him, younger son asked why. I reminded  him that Bearpaw was born in 1939, so 39 was perfect for him. His smile beamed from ear to ear. He doesn’t cry going to the ballpark anymore (the last time we saw Bearpaw was at the ballpark). He is beginning to love baseball again.

52 weeks. I sang “Happy Birthday” to him at the cemetery this past Thursday. It’s still so surreal.

And, as a geeky side note, ’39 by Queen is one of my faves.

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In 1993 I walked out of a movie theater scared to death that the T-Rex was going to swallow me whole on the way home. It was one of those movies that changed the way you look at movies. I loved everything about it. I loved Spielberg for making it. In the second one, I loved that Spielberg again had a dog eaten by the scary creature, a very hungry T-Rex (first dog was eaten in Jaws). I love Jaws and watch it regularly and always on the Fourth of July (Amity, as you know, means friendship). These movies are a part of my mind’s eye.

My sons have grown up watching Spielberg movies and tonight we shared seeing Jurassic World in the theater. Sunday we will see Jaws in the theater and celebrate 40 years of Bruce.  Older son’s room has dinosaur murals and Younger Son’s room has Bruce painted on one wall of his ocean mural. I love the movies that Spielberg creates, in whatever role he plays. You can just tell when he has his hand in it. To see my sons walk out of the theater tonight with huge smiles on their faces and to hear them talk incessantly about the movie on the way home are memories that will warm my heart for a long time.

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We have stayed up late the past few evenings playing Battleship.  Not the newfangled electronic version, but the classic peg and plastic ship version.  It was Hubby’s when he was a wee small boy.  The boys love when they win and hate when they lose.  It’s been several nights chock full of learning how to be a good sport.  The marathon series of games helps that lesson.  There is always another game and another winner.

Life is about winning and losing.  There is no way of getting around that.  The “cards” you are dealt may not seem fair, but truly is what you do with the cards that matter.  You can always discard them and hope for better.  You don’t need to sit there and bemoan your lot in life, change the cards and see what happens.

We are trying to help Younger Son realize that he can change his cards.  Fourth grade does not have to be remembered as the year of the bully.  It has been filled with so many wonderful events, life milestones, and new accomplishments.  And I do believe I am seeing some signs of him moving forward in this idea.  As with anything with nine year olds, it is two steps forward, three steps back, but he is getting there. A more positive outlook, kind words, kind actions, and allowing himself to be and feel happy.  We slowed things down, as much as we could, and it is making a difference in helping him remember that the bully has no power over him.

He likes quoting Sarah.  “You have no power over me.”  He is re-embracing his uniqueness and savoring marching to his own drummer.  He is remembering that he is an Addams!  He’s remembering he can sink that Battleship!

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