Thursday, January 27, 2011

Hey Mom. I think you forgot something.

A friend of mine was saying something nice about Quattro, my 10 year old. That he was polite or funny or something awesome and I just smiled and said "ya, thank you". I couldn't help but think she was complimenting me, by complimenting him. And that's one that is not hard to accept. Until recently, I feel it has always been hard to accept when someone says something nice to me. I cringe, a little, blow it off, a lot. Lately I have noticed this about myself and I have made a decision that it must stop. Just like thinking I look "fat" in something. I'm human, I have bad days but I think with kids, maybe especially with a girl but not necessarily, talking down about myself is just something that can't be. Not even off the cuff, not even joking. Everything we do can be taken to heart for these kids, it could also be taken with a grain of salt but how would you know? Risky.
Growing up I don't remember getting compliments and I certainly don't remember being taught how to accept them. Maybe it was the "times" or whatever but I have a feeling there were probably people growing up in the 80's (yep, the 80's) that knew how it was supposed to go. 
Not us.
I feel like my sister would never compliment me because she pretty much hated me. We are really close now but that didn't happen until I was in my mid- late 20's. I always wanted to be like her, she was smart and beautiful and seemed like she knew she wanted to get the hell out of our town, so I was on board with all of that. My family always seemed so preoccupied with work or someone else's problems, I did feel as though I slipped through the cracks in a lot of ways but that might be a whole different blog entry. Mostly I wish I would have seen people accept when others said something nice about them. It seems as though it is more important than you might think.
So I guess that's just part of my job description, to take the things I wish were different with my childhood and make them so with mine.  Same goes for keeping the things that are great. I like that way of thinking. I think more people should take notice what they think they might have missed out on or remember the things that make them strong and tighten it up a bit for their offspring. 
Growing up, I did learn to go out of my way to do things for people. We were always doing something for someone when I was a kid. My Grandparents are the pioneers of delivering a hitchhiker to his new spot and finding cars for those who need one- or a refrigerator, whatever you need, they will make sure you have it. They are still that way. Still the nicest people I know.
When I first met my husband, we were walking in NYC and there was a homeless man sitting in a wheelchair and there was a hat just on the other side of the curb, in the ditch. People were rushing by him and we passed him. Then I stopped and turned around and waded through the crowd and picked up his hat and handed it to him. Eddie gave me a weird look and we kept walking.
It never bothered me that the man that I was going to marry didn't think twice about passing this guy, obviously needing help because I was programmed to help. Now 11+ years later I think it might be because whenever I tell him he looks great, or sounds great he just says "thank you".

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Never can tell

You can't. I'm convinced we all have a "cover" that leads others to believe one thing but sometimes it is so far off, it's shocking.
I was walking in Ballard today with Elvis in her stroller and this lady was walking towards me, nicely dressed but she looked like she was hiding something. So I followed her. I can't help it, I was roaming around aimlessly and sometimes adventure calls in the strangest way. She had a nice bag and her hair was neat, outfit seemed to pass for "normal" and then she walked up to this van that was packed to the roof with crap. The entire dashboard was covered in fast food trash, papers, clothing... it was wildly disgusting. So she opens the sliding door and hops in. I had to pause for a minute (fix the baby's blanket) and when she opened the door it was like an episode of "Hoarders" but in a van! I don't know how she even got in, I was stunned, she just sort of disappeared into the abyss of garbage.
I'm not judging too much. I mean, yes I think it is totally whack that people live this way and every time I watch an episode of "Hoarders" I itch and immediately take some stuff to donate at Value Village. I was just more struck by how much effort this person must put into seeming "normal" because no matter how you slice it, chick is not okay.
My point is, we have to look under the "cover" to find out who we are dealing with. This lady looked perfectly fine, you'd totally rent her a room in your house or ask her to watch your stroller while you throw something in the trash can- whatever, you just would, by looking at her. Meanwhile, I can't even get a conversation going with any other Mothers in Ballard or the like because of the way I look to them. If they only knew I was a hardcore troubadour, I'm solid. I'm a connoisseur of parenting, I live it, I breathe it and I'm pretty fucking good at it. 
But they don't know. They are just wound up so tight, very judgmental- it seems.
I try not to judge. I notice. I observe. And I am open to being wrong about someone but I am usually right. My husband calls it my "gift/curse". I'm not a "know-it-all" but I am right a lot. I think it's because I have this old man in me, I have this creepy sense that I have been through a lot of things that are playing out in real time, like deja vu on steroids.


My husband is in Paris today, meanwhile I was woken up by a very cute and very sad baby twice last night. I was definitely not in Paris.
It is hard not be jealous and envious and all of the other sins I try to leave behind. I want to just get on a plane and be over there but it's not to be. 
It's the little things over here that he does, that make things smooth, that I miss the most. Well I miss his presence in the bed but I don't miss sharing it. Funny how when you have very little sleep to begin with, getting into bed at night and having the whole thing to myself, is not that hardest part of him being away but waking up to one of my either way too strong or way too weak cups of coffee... that is the kicker. That is when it really hurts. 
I miss you Eddie. 28 days left.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Boo, hiss.

Lately I have felt the weight of my life. 
The mostly single mom stuff. The fact that my husband is really far away stuff.
This is all very much at the surface because over the last 8 days, I got worked. On top of being deathly ill myself, my two kids have been as well.. but not at the same time, oh no- that might have been too easy. I have changed 3 beds approximately 5000 times. Approximately, I was too sick to keep count. Climbing into a loft bed to change the heavily barfed sheets of a 10 year olds bed is... well, let's just say my daughter will not be getting a loft bed. You live. You learn.
My little house got hit with what can only be remembered as the virus from hell. 
Enough about that. I'm still weak. I've consumed about 600 calories in 4 days, I can't bare to talk about it anymore. 


Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Have you been here before?

As I walked through the market tonight, quick run before the snow hit. My son wanted hot chocolate fixin's and I wanted some wine...
anyway, we were walking down the isle and there was a guy stocking the shelves, he had a box of coffee and other stuff. My son and I are walking and turning around waiting for the little girl, 16 months, as she casually walks behind us. She is watching every move everyone makes, it's weird. 
So she stops midway through her slow trek to the end of the isle where we are patiently waiting and she sees a bag, a coffee bag that you would use to purchase bulk beans and she picks it up and walks it back to the box and puts it in. I have no idea what is in the box. So she starts up again, walking toward us and there's another bag. She picks it up and walks it back to the box and this time I walked down to see what she was doing, it was so random (at first). The box was full of these coffee bags.
How weird is that? We thought it was odd. A lot of things she'll do will really trip us out. I asked her to get me a Q tip and she came back with one. It was weird, a fluke maybe but something tells me she has been here before. And she doesn't speak, it's like she doesn't have to.

Monday, January 10, 2011

43 days...

sounds like a lot. It feels like more.
I can't decide if it is better or worse to count down the days. I always do.
Now it's a ritual of sorts, crossing off the days with my son but some nights I wish we didn't.
Because some days he is strong and some days he just misses his Daddy.
I can't down play it either because I don't want to make him feel like he shouldn't get sad, I don't want one of those men... I say "men" because that is what I'm doing, I am raising a man. He might be little but that won't always be the case. It's practically not the case now. The kid is to my chin and at 5'7" I'm not exactly short.
We were having a talk the other day about him turning 10. I said "no more single digits" and he said "yay!" then he was quiet. I think at that moment he realized that he will not be a kid forever and I was so sad to witness but am so glad I didn't miss it. The time goes so fast, I beat myself up if I miss anything. 
It was in that moment of seeing my baby, my first born realize that he too was growing up that I decided to stop with the bullshit, all of it. Every bit of bullshit I trek through, I am going to start letting it go because it just doesn't matter. I want to make sure that I am showing him how to enjoy life and I myself want to slow down and start enjoying every bit because I too will not be a kid forever...

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Rutabaga and butternut

I made something really delicious last night.
I sliced the neck (after peeling) of a butternut squash and peeled and sliced some rutabaga, tossed them with a simple vinagrette with honey, thyme and pepper and baked them at 375* for about 15-20 min. I laid them on a paper towel for a minute to absorb some of the oil.
They were delicious.

Michael Lewis

Do you ever read a book and kind of get a crush on the writer?
I do. Well I did.
About a year ago, maybe more, Eddie got this book, man I can't even remember the name but it is by Michael Lewis, you know- "Moneyball" and "Blind Side" he's amazing. He is very smart.
Anyway, I have found myself thinking about him. The things he writes about, the book that my husband had, it is about him with his family, he has three kids, it's just the life of a father. But the way he writes, he is so honest, it is almost to a fault but it's not. He is fantastic. 
He is married to Tabitha "MTV" Sorren, I love that part too. 
I just thought I would start up this super stale blog by giving you something to go out and look for. Now what is the name of that book? Ahh, "Home Game" go get it.