Tuesday, May 26, 2009

… I’m going to tell you what you already know…

What you already know: Life is short and not to be taken for granted.

Why I’m telling you: Well because reminders can be a good thing.
-When we tell little ones to be careful every time they go out to play.
-When we tell loved ones to travel safely and “call me when you get there”
-When we part from someone special we say, “I love you”

And it doesn’t matter how often we say it because we can never say it too much and we mean it every time. And it’s nice to hear, too, isn’t it? Even the most stoic among us (myself included) secretly like it when someone lets us know that we care. I still smile remembering the one time nearly 10 years ago my mother referred to me as her “sweet pea.” Trust me, this was a big deal.

And who knows if and when our encounters will be the last ever.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

...You Won't Find Me in the (mother) Hood...

Mother’s Day was last week and it brought up an interesting memory for me about one of those experiences we all have that shape, and sometimes scar us for life.

When I was 8 years old, Santa made good on a promise and delivered a brand new Baby Alive doll.

Baby’s food came in cherry (red), lime (green) and banana (yellow). I mixed her food, put in on her pink plate and fed her. Back then you had to pull this lever on her back to make her “chew” but the lever was a hard plastic that made it a bit of a chore. My dad sprayed WD40 on a cloth and wiped her back to make it easier. Already, she was too much work.

I overfed her, gave her her bottle of water, and waited for her to do her business so I could change her just like on the commercial. About three Christmas morning specials later, Baby was a bit constipated so there was nothing to change. Not wanting to waste a perfectly good diaper, I waited until long after dinner to check her. Still nothing. By now I’m bored and irritated, so my dad gave her a bottle, then another one. Now Mom gives her a bottle and tries to “burp” her. It wasn’t this much work on the commercial; I am now learning what “false advertisement” means.

Dad offered a solution. “I think you made the food too thick. Run some water in the tub and stick her mouth under there to clean her out. You can start fresh tomorrow.” So my sister and I turn on the water and with her bottom aimed at the opposite end of the tub, we lined her mouth up with the faucet and let the water run in.

Oh, the horror.

Monday, May 11, 2009

...I Want You to Stop It...

My Mother’s Day was pretty alright this year even though my mom and I both had allergy sniffles, but other than that it wasn’t bad.

This is kind of a big deal since my mom and I have had our "moments" over the years but as I’ve grown older and learned better how she sees me it has helped improve how we relate to one another. I spent a lot of years thinking she didn’t like me and it turns out she just saw that I was more independent than most kids and treated me as such. Like that little kid you see walking to school in the morning with the parent walking two feet behind them. Parent never says a word unless that kid looks like she’s going to step off the curb without checking both ways first (Well at least you used to see that. I almost never see parents near the schools anymore- what’s going on people?)

Anyway, no matter the nature of our relationship, I have always known that I had a great mom. I know most people think that their mom is great, but really, my mom is one of the best around.

I know because I see things and people all the time that remind me how blessed I am to have had a little home training. I’m sure you see them, too. Kids and grown kids participating in some activity that makes you say “I feel sorry for your mother” a la “Menace to Society” (Or sometimes just “Where is your mother?” like that old JC Penny commercial).

Please feel free to share these Motherly Pearls of Wisdom with those unfortunate souls who clearly suffered some degree of maternal neglect growing up.

Monday, May 4, 2009

... I'm late but I'm here...

Déjà vu like a fuh-mucker.

Twice in the last few months I have run into an old friend and both times the conversation pretty much went the same way.
(insert typical greetings and friendly exchanges after a long separation here)
Old Friend: So how’s the writing thing going? Every time I’m in a bookstore I look for something that could be by you but I have no idea what name you’re writing under. What name you usin?
Angel: Hunh?
Old Friend: What?
Angel: Oh, I thought you said something
(awkward pause)
Old Friend: I just wondered how many books you got published?
Angel: well, I never really got around to-
Old Friend: Oh, so you did decide to go with journalism. Are you at a newspaper or magazine?
Angel: Oh, I uh, uh…. Holy!!! What’s that over there???
Old Friend: What? (spinning around) Where?
Angel flees by foot.

And since nothing clears the head quite like a brisk run, it occurred to me that I’ve been living my life with backward motivation. The decisions I make are based on the end results that I don’t want. This of course means in order to avoid one thing because I think it might be bad, I end up avoiding another thing even though it might be good.