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A little of this and a little of that…

So first, a little of this. I have a new book releasing in March!!!! Finally, right? The silence will end, my voice will be heard (or read), and bells will ring! Okay, so that’s dramatic, but a new book is always something to celebrate. Another baby being born. 🙂 With villains, and good guys, and smart girls. Whew, I’m so happy just thinking about it. I’ll be brief, but it’s about trying to move past a breakup and almost out of the woods of it, when…dum, dum, dum…..your ex asks for another chance. What? But, I almost got over you. I’ve been sort of seeing someone else. And you want a do-over? Um…let me see.   So tune in later for more teasers. I’ve got a million. Not really, but I’ve got to come up with at least two. With pictures. That’s always fun. Trying to pick from a gazillion people to favor your characters. You get the girl right and then the guy’s all wrong. Sheesh….

Anyhoo…now for a little of that. Christmas came and went. And frankly, I’m not sad about that fact one bit. I was never more not in the mood for that than ….than….well, I wasn’t in the mood. You could tell it in my decorations. There was no heart. I had no oomph. No get up and go. I have no idea why. Then my boys returned to college. Again. And early because we got snow and I was afraid for them to drive in it. Dumb snow. And it’s still there. Causing more trouble. Another day off school. Which I used to love…no getting up early, no packing lunches. Not so much now. Maybe because of all the bickering my kids do. Enough already. You’re bored. I get it. You don’t like going, you don’t like staying. Just go read a book. Yeah, right. Okay, let me go read a book. Or write one. Whichever you prefer.

No one has gotten terribly sick here. Thank goodness. I mean there’s the occasional stuffy nose. Which I can detect three rooms away. “Are you getting sick,” I yell. “Grab 3 vitamin C’s, 2 oranges, and a flax seed muffin”. I actually got sick 2 months ago. Nothing big, just couldn’t shake a cold. Like in a month it kept hanging on. My ears were stuffy, my throat was scratchy. And I know I’ve ranted about it before, but I went to an Urgent care and there was no doctor. Shocking, I know. Not really. They said, Evelyn will be in to see you. Have I really not told this story? I feel like it’s out there. Oh well, indulge me. I couldn’t have concluded it, because I just got the bill. $425.00!!! Yes, that’s right. $425.00 to see Evelyn. Who gave me something for a sinus infection. Like 1,600 mg of antibiotic every day. It was enough to kill whatever for future diseases. I could only take one. Turns out there is never a doctor at the Urgent care. NEVER. Only Evelyn. Then why is she $425.00 for 30 minutes. Do doctors exist? Where are they?

  And then the subject was closed on Evelyn and all the Evelyn’s out there.

Moving on. I’m into essential oils now. That’s new. Well, I’ve really been diffusing for 2 years. But now I’m like doing recipes and rubbing them on my body for different things. For example, they have a hormone balancing one. That’s fun. Not sure if it’s working. I’m still wiggy at times. Like strung out the kids don’t put their pant legs right side out for me to wash correctly. Will oil help in these manners? Ha! Who knows. The peppermint really helps for headaches. I’ve cut back on Advil like incredibly. I diffuse lavender, bergamot, and something else at nights. It’s truly wonderful. Just can’t remember that third oil. My kids tease me about it. Got the tummy ache? Let me get a roller ball of tummy ease for that!

I think that about wraps up everything that’s happened since the ‘Julieann shut down’. I’ve been working, trying to avoid laundry at all measures, and purging from my closet and other areas. Oh, I almost forgot. I’m working on a new concept. (not really all that new, it’s been around) It’s helped me greatly. Even listen to podcasts about it. It’s called Mindfulness. Being present in the moment. Sometimes it’s a real lifesaver. Here’s how it works. Sort of. You know how you’ve got a million to-do things on your mind, and your kid comes in and starts talking about the most long-winded thing you’ve ever heard? Well, instead of shaking your head and hearing only the mom from Peanuts (the wa-wa-wa), you actually stop thinking and focus on him. Or her. You live in that particular moment. Absorbing why the He-man character is so much better than the Incredible Hulk character. Your child even begins to believe you’re listening. And it eases your mind not to be anywhere else than there. Of course it works in other areas, too. Driving is one. I have a big problem with road rage. But when I realize it’s not their total fault that they want to turn into where I’m waiting to leave, thus slowing me down to wait for the cars now waiting behind them, I become less impulsive to call them ugly names. Thus making my children mutter things about them underneath their breath. Win, win. So mindfulness is our friend. 🙂 

 

 

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Two things to stew on…

First…healthcare. No, I promise this won’t get political or raise any awareness 🙂 , but seriously…I took my daughter to the “doctor” this evening because she has had a persistent stomach ache and it’s added a pretty hairy sore throat to the list of ailments. Know this, my daughter NEVER misses school, not even stupid half days. (Who ever thought of a half day? Pa-lease) So when she dropped her backpack by the door this morning and morphed into a ball beside me in bed, I knew that meant business. By dinner (of course) she’d become worse, so I drove her to the “doctor”. Only to be awakened to what’s, er I mean, who’s out there at these facilities now. They are referred to as “providers”. Yep, I was told I’d see a provider today. Hmm… Then I was called back by a “medical assistant”. Did the nurses and doctor’s get new names? Are these so called “providers” and “assistants” getting the same education as the others used to get? They even wore name badges; ‘medical assistant’. I’m a bit confused, and concerned. What was more eerie was they kept referring to one another by these cold titles. “The provider will be into see you shortly.” “You can ask the provider when she comes back in.” “The medical assistant will come do the strep test.”Are we running out of doctors and nurses? And will I be charged based on a provider and medical assistant rate?

But all that mess came before the drive pool lane at school. Today was extremely rushed for me. I left my house a total of 4 times today. And when you live on Little House on the Prairie that’s kind of a big thing. You usually plan to get groceries and call it a day where I’m from. No, seriously. There are no quick trips from my house. They all take about an hour one way. So before the doctor…provider debacle (which by the way, it’s a virus…yeah sure. I know strep when I see it) there was the car pool at school to pick up my son. Or as I like to call it, the 4k run of my patience. I mean seriously…mothers actually unbuckle themselves, stroll around to the sidewalk, kiss child on head, ask child how day was, undo their backpack to make sure nothing’s missing, place child in car, hum a little tune, buckle them, blow a kiss, shut the door, and saunter back to the driver’s seat. At which time they buckle, wave at the teacher who hasn’t quite exited the building, wait until they see them and return wave, then with turtle speed pull forward. Just once I’d like to blow my horn. I’ve thought about it. Long and hard. Who would scold me? Others might join in. You know who the culprit is by the third week of school. I look for that bumper sticker of the multi-colored bear and pray I’m not behind it. Or the red little hatch back. Oh, I’ve got the offenders down pat, all right.

Well, I’ve got to wake up early so I better get off my little soap box tonight. I somehow made a dentist appointment for all of my children in the morning. You know, when you make these appointments six months in advance, they should tell you where it hits. Lucky for me, it’s the day before Easter…the day I usually earmark for doing all the things I’ve procrastinated a month to do…Easter shop, menu prep for 14 guests…you know, the normal pre-holiday stuff. So this year instead of all that, I get to drive 2 hours to the dentist in holiday traffic.

So to leave on a spectacular note, because after I overcome my hurried day and watch some mindless television, I’ll be fine…I wish you a magnificent Easter. A time to feast with family and friends. To be oh-so-happy warm weather is settling in finally, and to eat all the coconut cake you want! 

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Full Circle

Well I did it! I made it through my son’s first year at college. 🙂 I feel like I was just here…plucking away at this computer, moaning and groaning about what I was going to do without him. And next week he’ll be back. Never more to be a freshman. I pointed this fact out to him this weekend, and he’s sort of bummed about it. Yes, he’s quite a sensitive chap. Things like never being a single digit again (turning 10 was big for him), or his last year home as a “kid”, were milestones. But I think he’s ready to return. I’m ready for him to return. It’s not terrible when he’s away for a long time. I get used to it. But when he comes back for say a week, it’s hard to get used to him being gone again.

Anyway, onto other things. I have a book releasing this week! Woo-hoo. Can’t wait. Jumping up and down on the inside. You just can’t see it. 🙂 It’s amazing to think I’m beginning another series, but I am. As usual, I’m a bit nervous how everyone will perceive Sarah. I’m resolved to know there will be some who don’t get her, some who think I’m writing their own story, and a few that stop reading after page 10. I get it. I’m that person, too. Everyone is. Reading is so subjective. For instance, I’m judging a writing competition this month, and there was one submission that I couldn’t read. I had to turn it back in and request someone else judge it. It wouldn’t be fair for me to do it. It’s just not my cup of tea. Heck, it wasn’t even tea, in my world. It’s not that it was poorly written, it just wasn’t something I could endure any longer. Past page four. But it amazes me how someone can read something I’ve written, not reach page 10 and plaster it with a one star on Amazon and Goodreads. I was raised that if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything. Oh well, not all were raised with the same theory, I suppose.

Onto depressing. Because doesn’t everyone need a bit of gloom in their day? Not really, but I had to mention it. Erin Moran died. Joanie Cunningham, as I’ll always remember her. What a sad life she turned out to have. I mean you have Ritchie, the now-director of blockbuster films, then you have his kid sister. Living without money, in a very depressed fashion of a life. What happened, Joanie? It in no way resembled her character on Happy Days. I think some people, no matter what cards they’re dealt, will have to struggle. And it’s sad. 56 years old. Rest in peace.

I hope everyone has a great week. I’ve got 3 birthdays to celebrate this week. My daughter’s is one of them. All of my kids get to choose their dinner and their dessert on their day. She has chosen spaghetti (in which I like the least…okay, I hate spaghetti), and white cake and white icing. Is she even my kid? No chocolate? I’m going to have to serve chocolate ice cream on the side or something. I hope I can make it without wincing. White on white?

Until next time!

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Where Has All the Happiness Gone?

I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter holiday. Mine was great. I cooked for everyone–as is the new tradition. I give my mother a much needed break from the muss and fuss. My turkey turned out like crap. And I even woke at the bloody crack of daylight to put it on–sautéing carrots, celery, and onion…gently thrusting some garlic and broth in for good measure. Thrusting? Really? All for it to taste like the rear end of something killed on the side of the road, after cooking for almost 7 hours. (not that I would know literally what that would taste like.) But there was a ham to fall back on. Thanks for bringing it, Barbie!

And then there was the panic of the dessert. The pound cake, upon reading the recipe the morning of, was discovered not to be the one I envisioned. Not really sure what the original vision was… So off to the store I went. And bought items for chocolate cream pies. Nope, never made one in my life. I’m just not a pie person. Luckily they turned out well. Made everyone forget about the lousy turkey!

Then there was the egg hunt. Ah, the traditional go-and-find-the-golden-egg hunt. Has anyone met my youngest son? The one who is certain the entire world is against him? Well needless to say, he wasn’t the one who found the golden egg. Instead it was the 13 year old cousin. In which he desperately hates now. And hates the inventor of said traditional egg hunt. And eggs…and easter baskets, and for all I know the air in which we breathe. My mother, of course, told him to come over to her, and she tucked a golden egg inside his hand. Just to inform anyone who isn’t at my home during the annual egg hunt–the golden egg has a $20 bill inside. And now my youngest is happy. Still not liking the cousin, because well, she cheated finding that egg, but he can go on and never spend that money now. That’s right…he finds a million things to want, but letting go of the dough is a whole other story.

So on to the title of my post. I was just visiting Facebook. Don’t do it, it’s a trap. You can get sucked in quite quickly. The next thing you know, it’s past your bedtime and now you know what everyone’s doing, done, or going to save as a recipe and never make in their life. But you know, they’re sharing it so it saves on their feed. Ok. Anyway, tonight I got so much more than that. I got a play-by-play of an elderly man getting gunned down on Easter day, a video of one of the innocent children dying from the chemical bomb Syria suffered a few weeks ago, and a baby girl left in a locked van while police knocked out a window to get to her. Ahhhhh……. where is all the happy? I’ll gladly take pictures of what Aunt Noreen’s dinner plate looked like tonight. No matter how disgusting that cabbage looked. And cousin Rita’s feet as she takes a crooked picture of her pool water. Enough with the reality. It’s too depressing. I had to scroll faster than ever tonight, just to get the images out of my mind.

Find your happy place, people! Stop polluting the airways with the horrors of reality. Show a shimmer of kindness. Show some little furry animal getting rescued, a baby trying peas for the first time, a flower growing from an abandoned old pot. Whatever. Just please stop posting the bad and ugly signs of our times. That was a bit unlike me, wasn’t it? So demanding. Maybe I’m just tired. Or my wrist is absolutely killing me. I think I have a pinched nerve. Yeah, blame my plea for happiness on the pinched nerve. What’s come over me with all my ranting?

Well, happy thoughts for now. I’m going to ice a wrist. Have a great week!

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And that just happened

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Don’t let the picture fool ya!

So I’m sitting outside my daughter’s school, waiting for play practice to get out, and my car begins freaking out. The locks begin clicking…the lights come on and go out, dim, and become brighter. I’m like ‘what’s going on?’ Within seconds, all goes black. “Are you freaking kidding me?”

Before the parking lot is abandoned, I go to a nearby car and kindly ask the woman if she has jumper cables. I know what you’re thinking…that girl has mad jumper cable skills. Ooh quite the contrary. Girl has no clue when it comes to the transfer of battery power via red and black cables.  So surprisingly she has this nifty emergency bag (she’s not once had a need for probably) and inside is a set of tiny little cables. Bingo. “Now I’ll just call a boy”, I said. “Better yet”, she replied…”I’ll try to go and find a boy”.

Short version of lesson is…why don’t they have a class, given in school, before anyone is allowed to graduate and demonstrate the fine art of “emergency situations and how to adapt”. Changing a tire knowledge would be nice…building a porch would stand out as a great category. Or, how about repairing a leaking faucet. I don’t know about you, but it would be a great change to not have to depend on someone else for things I could know myself, given the proper education. I mean once I’m out in the big bad world, finding a person with a set of unusable cables is about the best I can do. 😦

On to the hair situation. I left you last time with the cliffhanger of my short hair…will it grow, is it growing, am I wearing wigs? Well, I’ve been shampooing with biotin enhanced stuff, eating biotin gummies, massaging my scalp every chance I get, and yanking on the ends at least five time a day. Results…nada, nothing, not an inch. I will say though, it is a bit liberating. Sort of like a boy. Never does it fall into my eyes, blow in the wind, or get tangled after washing. I’m going to miss this little hot mess one day…oh, let it be tomorrow!

In other news of my oldest child…he’s the one in college. Fresh from the feathered nest of home. Where I cooked for, cleaned for, and washed for. Not to mention, sometimes thought for. Not all the time. He is eighteen, after all. But I was shocked to hear news today of him taking on a job without even the slightest text, tweet, or message to me to ask my opinion. I mean it was only last week he wanted me to look at a screen shot of his throat to give advice on seeing a doctor. His FIRST job? Say what? Who cares…he took it. Still no call..*crickets*

Moving on to a health note: My throat is extremely sore. Maybe I got whatever he sent me over in the picture. 🙂 No, seriously…it’s been hurting since the weekend. I powered up and took gads of vitamins. Which I think only trapped the junk in pockets of the throat lining. I’m not unable to breathe, but something just ain’t right. I couldn’t even sing to my power hour of happy songs playlist, on the way to work today. bummer.

One last thing to mention…smallest child came home without a coat. Okay, so it’s in the 40’s here–32 degrees in the mornings. He’s been out sick with a fever for the past 3 days. 3 days! And all because he went out to recess last week and stepped in the saturated playground, thus getting his socks, shoes, and pants drenched in muddy water. Yes! He was able to squish all the day long in water, thus not grabbing the attention of his award winning teacher. How does this happen? So today, after 3 days out for a virus/asthma induced sickness (by way of soaked shoes), his coat came up M.I.A. When asked if he wore it for recess, of course the answer was no. He couldn’t find it. So where is it? And why didn’t someone…oh, I don’t know…like a teacher ask this important question and not let anyone leave the class until it was found. Inquiring minds will never know. I’m off to find a makeshift coat for tomorrow.

Until next time. 🙂

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Happy Thoughts in a Sad World

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This country was a very weird place to be this week. Without going into the weeds of personal thoughts, I felt the weight of the world was a bit heavier. There was grief, elation, disbelief, sighs of relief, and complete chaos. The emotional rate, if weighed on a scale, was off the charts. My 8 year old son told me his third grade class was even divided into people who wanted this candidate to win and those who wanted the other. Are you kidding me? What do they know about politics? And since when do you have a playground fight about being republican versus democrat? Crazy times. All I did on the playground at his age was giggle about who was going under the big oak tree to pretend ‘get married’. And then take off running to do flips on the monkey bars. I never remember spouting off about a presidential election. Thank goodness.

I digress. My post was intended to focus on mindfulness. Which I practice every day of my life. Ever find yourself thinking stupid things? As small as, ‘Crap, what do I have to make for dinner tonight? I have no groceries in the house. We had junk last night. And for the love of all that’s sacred…I don’t want to go over to so-in-so’s house tomorrow. Why can’t I just say I’m busy?’     Thoughts such as these dance like sugarplums in my little brain a lot! There’s no goodness to be found. I have to redirect them to positive things, such as going through a plan of what I’ll make and how easy it’ll be. ‘I’ve got this. It’s going to be fine. I love just eating with my kids. Who cares if it’s breakfast night. Everyone likes pancakes.’ 🙂

Or, ‘I hate these shoes. Why do I consistently put these ugly things on my feet?’   If I don’t watch it, this type of stinking’ thinkin’ roams freely in my head. I have to consciously think better things. It’s called mindfulness thinking. Steering my thought to good places. Being the driver of them, not the passenger. ‘These shoes may be ugly as sin, but they’re broken in and feel good. I’ll just stay behind my desk a little more today!’

All of my thoughts are not the truth. I have to remember that one, too. Has your child ever been late and instantly you think you’re going to receive a call from the police telling you they’re in a ditch? Yep, that’d be me again! My mind is full of these fun gems. And that’s why I have to take the wheel and steer them to better places. And it works! But boy is it tiring.

So in a world that is so divided right now, I have to pull my energy to find all the goodness. And when you look for good and think for good, it will find you! Just try it yourself!

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My Wish

wishEver wish your kids had some of the things you did while they’re growing up? Every wish you had some of the things they have now?

I’d say I wish more for the first question. I wish my children had more of the freedom I had. And by freedom, I mean less shackles of an internet…of technology. I know I’ve ranted about this before, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been run off the road from a driver who is looking at their phone…more younger drivers than older ones. I already have a son who drives, and four more to go. I would be heartbroken if one were in an accident because either they or another driver couldn’t possibly wait to check something on Facebook. Let’s face it, the internet robs children of outside air. How many kids are inside versus how many are surfing the web, or playing online games?

I also wish that all the little bully sites would go away. I never thought I’d see the day that girls and boys would go online to target and hurt other people. As if to their face wasn’t bad enough. What is this about? (It’s bully week at the elementary school, so I digress). What happened to all the Coke commercials of people holding hands around the world, singing about being one? Is it that we don’t foster enough attitudes about acceptance? We don’t have to agree, but we should accept. So what if the beautiful Asian girl wears camouflage to school? Did that give the prissy girls a right to Facebook what a poser she was? To say her ethnicity shouldn’t wear a certain color of clothing? And ultimately drive the poor girl to kill herself? I hope these girls are appropriately charged with murder, because their unkind, needling words drove her to the brink, I feel. No, they didn’t pull the trigger, but they gave her the gun and showed her how to use it.

Can’t we just all get along? What hurts people, anyway? That’s right…sticks and stones. Maybe we should keep that in mind. And keep more of our words in our heads and not on our tongues.

 

 

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To Tattle or Not to Tattle

tattletailBeing the youngest child, I prided myself in being the family’s tattler. It didn’t make me popular with my siblings by any means, but it got me praised by my parents. “Good job, Julie. Now, tell me if they do it again.”

Of course, when you get into school and pull that stunt, you lose friends pretty quickly. My siblings still had to play with me, by order of my mother, but friends dropped you like yesterday’s cafeteria lunch. And, it was a roll of the dice if the teacher was going to be so appreciative to know that little Katie eats things from her nostrils.

Now that I have children, I’m not sure what message to send. Snitches are bad. The very word makes you think they need to be chastised. But, let’s face it, it’s how we, as parents, gather information. Although, it can be daunting, sometimes, to be told every five minutes a play by play of what the other child is doing mischievously, but it has to be known.

The question is always, how do you stay in the middle of the road? To teach a child not to be too tattle-tale like and not to be too dismissive. We need to know when little Peter is striking a match underneath the blankets at night, but we don’t need to know when Carol is bending the spine of the book funny.

I’m finding that you just let them tattle all they want until it’s age appropriate to apprise them of the difference in narking about drug use and tattling about wall booger wiping. For now, I’m in both stages. My smallest is in the second grade and my oldest is a senior in high school. And, it’s surprising what a big help the older siblings are in letting the smaller ones know the deal. Hey, I guess it was fortunate to have so many children!  🙂

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Countdown to Vacation

caribbean-packing-travel-tips-tropical-suitcase-fullThere’s so much hype that goes into packing for vacation. You go to the store and buy a new bathing suit, tiny bottles of shampoo, and maybe a new beach hat or shoes. But, let’s face it, when it comes down to it, you don’t need any of it. After it’s all over, you feel like you spent only a minute away from home. The new beach hat? Sure, you wore it one day, but it’ll go into the closet the second you come back. And those tiny bottles of shampoo, you could’ve saved yourself some money and a trip to the store and just taken the half bottle you have in your shower now. So, really you didn’t need one thing that you didn’t already have in your house. Let’s not forget the bathing suit…it’s depressing to try them on, they’re expensive, and unless you have a pool in your backyard, the only time it’s coming out to the sunlight is maybe five times a year. Just wear the one you got last year that was only worn four times because you swore it made you look like a beached whale. (You’ve lost a few pounds and it’s broken in. It’ll look better this summer!)

Still, it’s so exciting to pack…and exhausting. There’s so much bubbling of expectation. You’re leaving!! The kids are jumping around. It’s time to go to the beach!! Then the car ride begins and the crankiness rears its ugly head fifteen miles into the mission. (Seriously, you travel further to take them to school each day.)”How much longer?” “When is lunch?” “Are we eating inside?” You suddenly think how glad you are that this only happens once a year, in fact.

We travel to South Carolina every summer, so it’s about a day’s drive for us. Just long enough for leg cramps and a bit of hysteria. We end up at Seabrook. It’s beautiful there. There’s water on one side and marsh on the other. I could stare out at the swaying tall reeds all evening. Charleston is a forty minute car ride from there. It’s rich in history and the architecture is stunning on the old houses. It’s been a wonderful vacation for our family. This year our usual extended family members all backed out last minute. Everyone had their own sob story as to why they couldn’t go. So, we’re getting a large house all to ourselves. If I’m not mistaken, we might all get our own room.

I’m looking forward to it AND trying to contain my anxiety about leaving things behind, all at once. I know whatever I forget I can probably do without or buy there. My biggest problem is my small dog. Everyone I’ve used before doesn’t want to endure the agony of watching her again. It seems she’s a bit of a nervous barker when I’m gone. I guess I’ll try my luck and ask my darling brother in law. It’s only for seven days. That time will fly by for me, no doubt. But, it might be an eternity for him!

 

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Time to Move On

imageI received my son’s senior pictures in the mail yesterday. Just writing the words and remembering the sinking in my stomach when I looked at each of them, makes me want to cry. This is the little boy, the same little boy I see when I look at them, who wore Harry Potter glasses, carrying a green bucket of toys around, with a binky in his mouth and one in his other pudgy little hand. The same little boy I could hear ask me why I didn’t hug him as much as his younger brother. Boy, life takes no prisoners. You want to play the game, you must be ready to land on every spot it takes you. Don’t get me wrong, I’m over the top happy and appreciative that he’s come this far in life. Not only arrived here, but came with flying colors. He’s an ‘A’ student, the most gentle, and kind person I know for his age, he is humble, he knows exactly what he wants to do in life, and he asks for very little of me. And, now this is his last year at home with me as my boy.

After next year he’ll be packed up and ready for college. Let’s face it, they never come back the same. They’ve lived on their own for too long to feel they belong in the gang the way it used to be. My nest will be eternally mangled; roughed up, not resembling the original feathered heap it once was. I’ll look back in my rearview mirror and not see him. Oh, the thought kills me!

Change like this sucks. I don’t do well with it. The other day I’m on the phone with my third boy’s nurse and she’s telling me that once he turns nine he needs a different medicine than what I’ve always given him. I tell her that we’ll cross that bridge when it comes time. She asks, “isn’t he nine?” I retorted back, “he just turned eight. For goodness sakes, I was there. We had a party.” She then tells me that she’s looking at his chart and it says he’s nine. I scoff, telling her that she has a messed up chart. Then, she asks what year he was born. I tell her most confidently, “2006.” She quietly says, “That makes him nine.” I hold on to the counter I’m standing beside and it sinks in, Oh no, he is nine! WTH?

Time waits for no one, my friend. Sure, you’re glad when the dreaded binky isn’t the lifeline to your toddler, your son stops biting random children, and your other one can watch a movie without having the bladder of a peapod. But, when they look at you behind the wheel of a car and wave goodbye, what are you supposed to do then? Sit home and feel like there goes the last eighteen years of your life? Pray the world doesn’t chew him up and spit him out? Hope he doesn’t come home with a nasty girlfriend who suddenly knows his likes and dislikes better than you? Or, doesn’t come home at all because he’s got better plans?

I suppose I’ll just take a deep breath and enjoy this last year, hoping and praying it all turns out that he does make it through; that he does get to go to college; that he begins living his own life. That he gets the chance to live his dreams.

I might need a support group for this:)