Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Time. The only truth.

I can't believe this is actually the first opportunity I've had to sit and write since August 11th. Well, that's sort of a lie. I've had time, I just decided not to make any. Life's like that though. Just today, I had a complete meltdown at work. My tears, frustration and loss of sleep is the result of time - and lack of it. Not enough seconds in each minute to complete everything needed and expected of me. Doesn't it seem like there is never enough time? You love your kids, but they grow too fast. You can't wait to go on vacation - but you blink your eye and your back in your office chair, broke with a faded tan. Sometimes I force myself to not think about the things I'm excited about hoping to prevent the event from coming to fruition. In contrast, the moments I dread I can't seem to shake. Imagining Cooper and Wyatt going off to college, getting married, moving away....Moments that I'm sure will bring buckets of joy, pride and sadness when the time comes. I know my boys are on loan, but knowing that fact doesn't make the inevitable any easier. Lots of mom's I know - especially those with kids under 10 can't wait until they have their own lives back again - an empty house and an open road. Ah, Pete and I can take that cross country trip out on Route 66, and sleep in on the weekends!! Then I hear Wyatt's feet at 4 am run across the floor and jump into my bed to snuggle and I wonder how can I ever have a morning without this? Or seeing Cooper play his Lego's, building these amazing multi-layered jets knowing the kid wants to be a pilot and one day he will. I know these boys will always love me, but they will need me in a different way than they do now. And although that's the circle of life and how it's suppose to go, returning to "my life" when the best life I've know has been with my sons will be impossible. Your probably thinking - "you have plenty of time". A river of force, such a constant and inevitable thing. Time, it's really the only truth.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

And so it goes....

So - a few weeks ago, I attended my high school reunion. A reunion after 20 years seemed awkward at first, yet so comforting at the same time - like the old pair of Doc Martens collecting dust in the back of my closet. Exchanging smiles and hugs with people who knew you before you knew yourself. The "you" before the adult took over and went into battle! But for me anyway I couldn't help but wonder, "Am I good enough? Have I done enough with my life? How did people remember me? How do they see me now?" As I walked into the bar (with some of my favorite friends from back in the day, Scottie, ML, Lexy) it was like deja vu. Lindsey Matson was there to greet everyone at the door. I remembered seeing her for the first time during "move up day" in 6th grade and thought she was the prettiest girl I had ever seen. And Kristin Guinta - who I sat next to in 11th grade Law class, what an infectious laugh on that one! Every time I turned my head - there was another face, another memory. It was amazing, wonderful and hilarious. Sure, the same old groups sort of evolved as the night settled in but it didn't feel like it did 20 years ago. It was open and relaxed and kind. To hug Jason Riley - my very first boyfriend from 5th grade but someone I regretfully never spoke with in high school, or Sandown's own - Wayne Britton - those two looked amazing! Elicia, Jessica, Goonie, Jay, Charity, the list goes on and on. I couldn't help but to feel a sense of pride being back together with these amazing people and sharing stories, coloring in the gray of the past 20 years. Knowing nods of times shared but experienced separately. Seeing everyone again felt like getting on stage at the end of a huge performance. Although not every scene back then included everyone at once, we were all there. A wrinkle in time. My reunion sorta felt like that - only better! A curtain call complete with dancing, bathroom chats, a 3 am photo shoot with Dan Lane and lots of beer. Here's to another 20.... but may we all meet sooner than that.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The hardest years

Nobody ever told me marriage would be so hard. The more I talk with my married girl friends, the more I hear the same thing: "things just aren't the same as they were". "Were" meaning: pre-children. When I was pregnant and waddling around buying baby clothes and crying for no reason, Pete and I were close. We'd talk and laugh and sleep in! We'd make time to play, and have fun. Not long after Cooper was born those lazy Sunday mornings turned into us practically drawing straws to see who was going to wake up with Cooper. I don't know how many times one of us would say "I was up yesterday morning... it's your turn". It's not that we didn't love becoming parents - we fell in love with him the moment he was born, but something happened to us. We became tired, cranky and short. I think of some of the negative things I say to Pete that I would never in my wildest dreams say to any other person in my life. And I'm sure he feels the same way. It's like we are each other's sounding board for all the shitty things you can say to another person (before they want to kill you) and although it's wrong and hurtful, we love each other and maybe that's why we feel like we can say anything. I don't know.
I was food shopping the other day and an elderly woman was staring at the freezer filled with OJ. She turned to me and asked "what is pulp?" I explained pulp and told her my husband loves it, but I don't so I buy "some pulp". That made her laugh! She said "Good for you dear for compromising... I was married for 50 years and I think it's from just turn'in my cheek". I knew what she meant. Picking battles, meeting half way, letting go, and making compromises. She swore to me that after her 4 boys (YES, 4) had grown and moved away, she and her husband started travling and playing Bingo. Her story reminded me that life exisits after children. They don't always stay young and the house won't always look like a bomb went off. Loving relationships repair. Ride the storm I guess, together with the unspoken understanding that one day the chaos will end and something new will begin.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Closure on the "first half".

I'm about 2 months away from my 20th high school reunion. Timberlane Regional High School "Home of the Owls". Returning to the past, familiar faces, funny stories and years of new adventures since then - June of 1991. Long before ITouch, IPhone, Ipod, GPS, Internet, Map Quest and Snooki. Britney Spears was 10, Michael Jackson was alive and black and Nirvana's "Never Mind" album was just released. Back before the devastation of 9-11 changed life as we know it, and raising children changed us. We have traveled the world - college, military, marriages, divorces... we have lost many people we love. We have done some amazing things with our time and everything has lead us here. Saturday nights at Hampton beach have been transformed into treks to Story Land in the "family car" packed high with juice boxes, anti-bacterial wipes and sunblock. Gone are the days of spending our pay check on ourselves. The kids need new shoes, and it's picture time again. Paying our parents for the phone bill seems like pocket change now - compared to mortgage payments, daycare, insurance, heat, food and gas. Life was so easy back then, and cheap. No midnight worries about babies with high fevers or putting together a 300 piece train set 4 hours before Christmas morning. Santa used to come for us back then, but my how life has changed in 20 years. We have changed. We are mothers and fathers, husbands and wives. I was looking back at our year book the other day, seeing the eyes of young adults ready to conquer the world and some of us did exactly what we said we'd do - like Kerri Downs who wanted to "marry Brian and have a large family" (I heard she's up to 5 kids?) And Charity Reardon who wanted to finally get her license! But for people like me - I didn't have a clue what I wanted to be when I grew up. I still don't. What I do know is besides the roller derby thing, living in Atlanta, getting married, having kids - I'm pretty much the same person I was. Only stronger, more courageous and older. We were just kids in 1991. I think after everything we have all been through, it's time to let it all go. As excited as I am for this reunion, it's sort of closure for me. Closure on the "first half" of my life.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Meet you in hell, Melvil!

I've only been fired from ONE job ever and I've certainly had some interesting ones over the years; clearing tables, Canobie Lake Park, news producer, promotions assistant, ice cream scooper, cashier, blah, blah, blah. So which job did I lose for simply "not really getting it": THE LIBRARY. Who the hell gets fired from a job where you check in, check out and organize books and periodicals? Let me back up and try to redeem myself for just a moment - I was only 15 years old. Long before bar code scanners, the Internet and electronics did the job for you. Back when the DDC, also called the Dewey Decimal System was really the only source of locating a book - kind of like finding a needle in a haystack only the haystack was a large room that smelled like mothballs and the needle looked like this: BR-0009-87-FA/NON-28. According to WIKIPEDIA, the DDS is a proprietary system of library classification developed by Melvil Dewey (GEEK) in 1876. In a nutshell, the damn system organizes books on library shelves in a specific and repeatable order that makes it easy (no, not really) to find any book and return it to its proper place (lies.... all lies). Why isn't ABC order sufficient and to-the-point enough? Books don't need numbers. That's just crazy and if Melvil was alive today, I'd punch him in the face. I'd blame him and his idiotic, anal-retentive, OCD way of grouping books together - the reason I got fired when I was 15. It's sort of like paying a credit card late once- and it appears on your credit report for 7 years reminding you - you suck. The fact that I got fired from a job that from the outside appears like anyone could manage is demoralizing, embarrassing and plain retarded (no offense). Forward 17 years later - I now work in payroll where everyday I'm faced with all kinds of numbers. Big numbers, little numbers, negatives, calculations, %, and vacation accruals. Sometimes my 15 year old self comes out and I lose my shit (ahem, this past Friday) and wonder if I can really do my job surrounded by all of these numbers that need to make sense somehow. The Melvil's DDS didn't make sense back then, and frankly it still doesn't. Thank god I have a power of voice, and can just ask any of the metro-sexual dudes (at Barnes & Noble) where the "self-help" books are. You know, the books on people with obvious insecurity issues regarding past failures - which usually finds its way into like, now. Yeah, those kind of books.