the babies and i meet deacon at the gate after his school day is over. he is red faced and happy to see us. this boy is so delightful. the first thing he says is he "feels like snakes are watching" him.
maybe they are watching. and they like what they see.
This new baby makes me feel like I have motherhood figured out and put together. He demands and I supply. He needs and I give. I am dialed in baby. Thanks for making me feel like I am a fabulous mother. You other four kids...life gets messy, huh? Wanna nurse? No? Then I am all outta solutions for ya for now.
this really is ad nasueam about my kids. i know. i just can't write about the amazing protein bar i am subsisting on (KIND sea salt), or my OOTD, or even sticky emotional stuff. i continue. so, charly, that girl. the facts of it are she took second in the state in both hurdle events, only behind the freakishly fast senior Tiana Bonds. in her relay she is always the anchor (last runner) and the reason the team does so well. they were also second in the state. she also qualified to run the sprint at state but got disqualified for a false start; that really hurt her heart. she called me crying, but then a couple hours later ran her 300 hurdles like a gazelle. speaking of gazelle...
she is also on the track team the nevada gazelles. this team is headed up by randall cunningham. this name meant nothing to me a month ago. i did not ever watch sports growing up. i pretended/tried a little when i was dating to care about sports until it was too taxing. i guess cunningham is a big deal in football. his two high school kids are a big deal in track, and he wants charly to train with him. so, i get to have brother cunningham in my life 4-5 days a week. he is a pastor of his own church now (which has always been a crazy notion to me to start one's own church). he pushes charly hard. her body is a strong machine that every coach wants to be part of at this point. colleges are already asking around about her (but legally can't approach her til after her sophomore year.)
this is not me bragging, because it is not me. i am not down on that track hurdling, that would be so silly to see. it is charly. yes, she is my daughter, but the ridiculous truth about children is that they are not OURS, they are not US...we just take care of them and serve them for awhile. it seems like a raw deal on many levels. but, hopefully my life will have meant something by the fact i have produced five wonderful people. right?
i went to a tears for fears concert with my brother at the old aladdin theater in my late teens. the lyrics "welcome to your life. there's no turning back" hit in a teenage angst way of realizing that childhood was almost over, blah, blah, blah. The song was on the other day and it hit me in a middle age crisis kind of way that there really is NO turning back. i will never be the 15 that charly is now. man, i would love to go back to 15 though knowing what i know. but i take what i have learned and the mistakes and successes and pass them on to my spawn. the efforts i have put into having char have a different existence is paying off. hallelujah.
at the track banquet i hid my tears of joy (which was not hard since her, her boyfriend and friends were sitting no where near their parents. le sigh, see! some of that raw deal i was talking about above) as she was first awarded MVP of the hurdle team; then she was awarded MVP of the whole girls track team. mmmmm, charly, good job.
end note: with the two competitors she has in the state keeping her from first place being seniors, next year she will be on the top of the podium in three events: 100 and 300 hurdles, and the 100 sprint. watch for it.
the days knowing him are fab: he gets up at 8:29 am, everyday is black levis and vans, his love of panera mac and cheese, what he tells me about his day or thoughts on the way home from school, how he does not see a problem with wearing white socks with black pants to church, he won't eat leftovers, loves his family deeply, when i hold his hand he always pretends to bite my hand...
last year i gave him tickets to david copperfield. it is what he wanted. almost a year later, the last weekend before he turned 13, i bought the tickets and we were planning on going. an hour before leaving he was getting upset with his 7 year old brother. i asked him to stop, he did not. it is sometimes like he cannot stop himself. it turned into an argument. i pulled the plug on the evening events. dev was sad, he did not understand. i tried to help him understand. then we put on pajamas and just watched copperfield online. after confusion at the "illusions" and laughter we decided that we really did not miss much.
on his birthday i set up a scavenger hunt for him to illustrate how i love his emotional, spiritual, physical and mental selves. it began with a card instructing him to take a can of silly string and lure his brother outside to douse him. dev has a silly side that only a few people see; i am one of the few. (and deac is in black thermals in full sun because he was being a ninja.)
then the spiritual part i had him look up my favorite scripture of 2 nephi 9:41 of how the lord will "employeth no servant there"...that he will be there personally and not have some random dude taking on the duty of chatting it up with me about my time here on earth. for what it is worth i like the idea. he then had to text me his favorite scripture before i would give him the next clue. he said his was the same as mine. i was not sure if i should be proud/flattered, or call a serious foul on that whimp out move. i let it go and gave him the next clue.
then the physical part: a gift of new Vans, hat and swimsuit. then the mental. i led him to a new rubix cube. like the genuine old school rubix cube he has been wanting. then he had to text me his understanding of the law of entropy and how it applies to him. he looked it up and did not quite understand so we discussed how all things in a state of order are heading to a state of disorder, and it takes an active force against that to keep things in order. this law applies to his emotional, spiritual, physical and mental well being. he must assert an active force to keep these parts of him in order and healthy. then he was led to his final gift of some cash money (since that is all he really wants). he was jazzed, probably even more jazzed since his siblings were both jealous of him.
then we made home made waffles (mind you i still had the two babies on my own at this point. a little bit of a fiasco.) when the family came in town we did a birthday dinner at his place of choice...i was thinking hibachi, sette bello...nah, he picked red robin. where the manager's jokes are always the same, he says to deven about me "hey, it's nice your sister brought you here." and to the 8 week old "no shoes no service buddy." but i guess their mac and cheese is phenom. i take his word for it.
i am blessed for him. i hope i am raising a boy that will be a christ like man, because that is really the only valid male figure i have to pattern raising all my boys after. if nothing else, i hope he knows how madly i love him and plan on being his boss FOREVER. (note to his future wife, see my veiny hand on his arm in the first photo???)
a little randomness today, this friday: the day the girl is in state championships, one day before my cousin gets married, two days before deven turns 13, 2 years and ten days since dad died.
there is too much to say that probably does not mean too much either.
(like yesterday i was going to fly to carson city to see charly race. ezra (8 weeks old) and my mom were going to come with me and everett was staying with his dad in vegas...on our way out the door to the airport i had a debilitating anxiety attack. at the ripe age of 38 i have had enough of these suckers to know that i needed not to fight it. i could not leave everett. even though he is no longer "the baby" of the family, he is still a baby. he is only 17 months old. he has been sick with hand foot and mouth disease. he probably would have been fine with just his dad, but what if??? so his dad quickly packed and i took him and my mom to the airport to fly to see MY FIRST BABY run her races. i picked up deacon and then deven from school and it was quite the night of me and four boys at home. deacon was sad this morning when he realized he was going to be late to school because after an all night party in my bed with the babies i did not care to wake up my first grader to be on time. he said to me "it is ok mom, i know you are used to not getting up early."
what did you say boy! what?!!! ah, nevermind.
and i am pretty sure deven was looking forward to going to school today as it is far less work then staying home "mom, you should have taken ezra to see charly. i would have helped dad watch everett if you left."
what did you say boy! what?!!! ah, you are probably right.
today everett is still sick and showing NO signs of appreciation that i stayed home with him. none. some guy paying at the register in front of me in the 7-11 i stopped at this morning to buy milk looked at me and the babies and said to the cashier "i got this lady's milk." i asked his name. thanks mikey but i am not planning on paying it forward today. maybe next week. or next year.
trying to be positive is as exhausting as being negative.
I give her sadness,
And the gift of pain,
The new-moon madness,
And the love of rain
Reasons always came with a purpose, to give the appearance of a struggle between principle and desire. But there's been no struggle. Principle had power only until you found what you had to have. Tobias Wolff "The Night in Question"
What doesn't kill you doesn't make you stronger. The dead are not necessarily in a better place. The testing of faith may not proceed the miracle.
gertrude stein wrote verbal portraits of two painters: picasso and matisse. of picasso she wrote:
One whom some were certainly following was one who was completely charming. One whom some were certainly following was one who was charming...some were certainly following and were certain that the one they were then following was one bringing out of himself then something that was coming to be a heavy thing, a solid thing and a complete thing. One whom some were certainly following was one working and certainly was one bringing something out of himself then and was one who had been all his living had been one having something coming out of him. Something had been coming out of him, certainly it had been coming out of him, certainly it was something, certainly it had been coming out of him and it had meaning, a charming meaning, a solid meaning. "Picasso" 1912
and of matisse she wrote:
Some said of him that he was greatly expressing something struggling. Some said of him that he was not greatly expressing something struggling. He certainly was clearly expressing something, certainly sometime any one might come to know that of him. Very many did come to know it of him that he was clearly expressing what he was expressing...Any one could be certain that he was expressing something being struggling. Some were certain that he was greatly expressing this thing. Some were certain that he was not greatly expressing this thing. Every one could come to be certain that he was a great man. Any one could come to be certain that he was clearly expressing something. "Matisse"
there are types of greatness. some people experience it like picasso where it just flows out of them with seeming little effort. some people are like matisse where they work and struggle to achieve greatness. both types are amazing to watch. my oldest is a picasso greatness.
she illustrated this again this past week as she competed in her first ever track meet. she is a freshman who ran the 100m hurdles, 100 sprint, 300m hurdles and 400. after her first event EVER she qualified for regionals, broke her high school record, qualified to go to santa barbara and earned her varsity letter. as proud as i was, was also as dumbfounded as i was. she had a crowd rush her in a huge hug "certain that the one they were then following was one bringing out of (her)self then something that was coming to be a heavy thing, a solid thing and a complete thing."
i am certain of it too.
my precious mom is turning seventy. 7-0. when filling out her birthday card i wrote "here is to 70 more", like as a joke, but it really isn't funny. at all. let's not ruminate on that. rather, how about this idea in Navajo myth of the changing woman:
according to legend, Changing Woman changes continuously but never dies. She grows into an old woman in winter, but by spring, she becomes a young woman again. In this way, she represents the power of life, fertility, and changing seasons.
i have been working on an essay of how women can be labeled as crazy, fluctuating, etc. we go thru so many cycles of death and rebirth that of course we change. how in nature's law could we not change? if anybody represents the power of life it is my mom. and hello, she has learned to use an iphone and instagram, if that is not becoming a young woman again then i don't know what is. she may possibly be on her phone more than my teenage daughter. which is awesome.
note: iphone camera always ready to capture: baby so excited he got his brother's hat on he's going to combust
let's celebrate moms, change, life, babies, old age, seasons, spring... and worn soft old t-shirts on white skin woman with natural dark hair.
"In a strange room you must empty yourself for sleep. And before you are emptied for sleep, what are you. And when you are emptied for sleep, what are you. And when you are emptied for sleep you are not.
And when you are filled with sleep, you never were. I don't know what I am. I don't know if I am or not."
William Faulkner "As I Lay Dying"
often times i have this boy put away his phone because i want his time, or want him to engage with others. when i get this look from him i know it is either time to go, or it is time to let him on his phone. next time i think i will start singing this song to him:
i'd go hungry i'd go black and blue,
i'd go crawlin down the avenue
oh there's nothing that i wouldn't do
to make you feel my love
first world problem: there are so many bunnies that come into my backyard that it is basically a yard of bunny pellet droppings taking over the grass. there is a chicken wire fence to keep them out, they don't care. nor do they care that my crawling 1 year old is vehement that these droppings are the tastiest snack around. he is mad for them. crazy bunnies, crazy baby.