Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Rearview Mirror

The most valuable lesson man has learned from his dog is to kick a few blades of grass over it and move on.  ~Robert Brault

I  have a tendency to hold onto things. I always firmly grip the belief that things can be salvaged or repaired. I sometimes even see objects as what they could be instead of what they are. When its things around the house, I have to make sure I'm not setting us up for the next episode of Hoarders. But when it comes to the more intangible areas of feelings and relationships, its a much harder struggle to justify the decision of giving in or letting go.

I think that sometimes its just a matter of getting to a tipping point. You let things roll off your back, but the feelings tend to not brush away as easily. You think they've washed away when they really are just settling down into the dark crevices of your mind. Lying in wait to rise up again in a swirl when faced with another rush of emotional onslaught. And I try not to make my decisions when immersed in the murky sludge of the moment. I try not to be petty, or vindictive, or locked in the memories of the thousand past little hurts and injustices that came before this new moment. But sometimes, the act of continually offering the other cheek starts to feel a bit like assault and battery. Sometimes, always saying "yes" to someone else is actually saying "no" to yourself. And sometimes it just hurts too much to keep holding on.

Sometimes, you just have to let it go, and leave it behind you. And sometimes, the hardest thing about it, is not looking back as you go.

Eyes front. Let's roll.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Six Years Around the Sun

A lot like yesterday, a lot like never.  ~Tim O'Brien

You're six years old today. Six years since you were a squalling pink bundle, completely unimpressed with your new surroundings. You've gone from plump and dimpled to as slender as a spaghetti noodle.You still sing and laugh and giggle. But now you can read and write and speak some Spanish. You're learning to tell time. You love to color and create masterpieces. To dance and make up stories and try to make people laugh.You're fierce. Fiercely loving, fiercely stubborn, and fiercely passionate about what you think is right and wrong. You are a great teacher to your brothers, a great sharer to your friends. You have your own sense of style. You insist on skirts over jeans, and dress shoes over sneakers, but your favorite thing to do is still dig in the dirt to find bugs, and chase after insects and butterflies.You like to dress up your animals and your Barbies, and take care of all your baby dolls with their cribs and strollers.You're wild over Hello Kitty, Cinderella, and My Little Pony. Have an intense love for horses, cats, and puppy dogs, and want to grow up to be a veterinarian. I hope 60 years from now you're still as bright and sensitive and full of laughter as you are today.

Happy Birthday, Monkey-bean!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Lucky Strike

Better to lose count while naming your blessings than to lose your blessings to counting your troubles. ~Maltbie D. Babcock

 We went to the beach one evening to have dinner with wonderful friends of the family and then watch some fireworks with the kids. It was beautiful the entire night, but apparently the weather at home was a different story. About two hours after we left, a nasty thunderstorm rolled in at our house and lightning struck the massive oak tree next to our driveway. Our neighbor called to tell us about it, and we immediately asked after hubby's Passat since it was parked nearby in the driveway. She said it looked fine, that no branches had fallen on it or anything. However, when we came home at night, we noticed that although the car had suffered no exterior damage, something was definitely wrong. The entire dash was lit up, but blank, with no mileage or time showing, and all attempts to start the car failed. The only explanation was that the car had been hit by the lightning as well.

It was a sad day when they came to take the car for assessment, not knowing whether we'd ever see it again. And ultimately, in the end, the insurance deemed it totaled. Then the fun began of looking for a replacement. Since my GTI wouldn't fit all five of us plus dog, we decided we still needed a larger family hauler, but that it didn't make sense for hubby to drive it to commute to work. The GTI got better gas mileage, so that was passed into his possession, and we found me a pre-owned Mommy-mobile. 

Say hello to my Mazda5, or as hubby likes to call it, the macro-van. We ended up driving three states away to get it, but it covered all the needs and wants on our list, like a manual transmission, and three rows of seats so the kids aren't punching each other in the eye while I'm driving. I never wanted to be a minivan driving mom, but I must say, it was extremely less painful driving with the three kids and dog up to our vacation in Canada than it ever was driving two towns over with the three of them in the GTI. Separated children make for much better behaved children. And the folded down seat in the back is the perfect size for our furbaby's travel crate. She was one happy pup to be included in our vacation. And as I've been driving it for over a month now, I have to say its growing on me. I still miss the creature comforts of the GTI (especially the heated seats when I have to drive Scootch to preschool in the mornings), and of course the response and handling is nothing like my sporty 2.0 liter turbo was. But all in all, I must say, if there was ever a happy outcome to a lightning strike, I'm thinking a car upgrade is it!