Sunday, December 29, 2013

Happy Birthday, Mom

Grief is a funny thing. 

It arrives and departs on it's own timetable 
never bothering to follow the laws of reason or civility.  

A cherished friend recently told me that
it takes seven celebrations for the sting to diminish. 

Seven birthdays.

Seven Christmases. 

Seven adoption anniversaries. 

I do not know if I believe it.
Because grief does not play fair. 

While it seems as fresh as a few moments ago 
that I held her hand while she took that last breath

It seems forever and a day
since I last saw her face. 

Forever and a year since my ears 
heard her voice say my name. 

I miss her as much as I did the moment she left 
and more than ever before. 

Happy birthday, Mom. 

I still miss you every day.

I still miss your voice.

I still miss your face.

I still miss your presence.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Today was my eighth day back at work and
the end of my first full week. 

I am tired. 

I am tired but I got up every morning. 
I showed up. I taught. I assessed. I kept up
in line. We got where we needed to be mostly
when we needed to be there and nobody got lost.

This is a wonderful and terrible time of 
year for teachers. 

The good thing is that it is Christmas time

The bad thing is that it is Christmas time.

I still say it is the best job ever.

But I am saying it from underneath the 
electric blanket on my bed.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Just Another Thanksgiving Post

I would say that my doctor, his sweet wife and I have known each
other half of our lives but that might prompt some of you 
to try to figure out how old we are. 

And we aren't. 

Old that is.

And that's just unnecessary.
And probably rude.
Just sayin'..................

I first met the doc and his wife at church.

Her father was the pastor at that time and her mother was a teacher. I fell in love with her parents. 

Her father reminded me of mine and listening to Preacher was like going home. He is a hugger and has a smile that is impossible to resist. Turning him down was impossible so suffice it to say that I did time in Mission Friends and Children's Sunday School. When he asked I just automatically nodded. 

Her mother...well she was a saint. Beloved by her students and able to make this girl feel like she mattered. Even more more impressive was her ability to say the thing you needed to hear the most. She caught sight of me one Wednesday evening and called me over to her table. Starting with, "I've been meaning to tell you..." and ending with, "I wanted you to know I noticed." she gave me the gift of encouragement at a time when I felt all alone in a struggle.  

Kathy and her sister were kind enough to invite me to the kinds of things young Southern Baptist women did back then. I was shy and awkward and I didn't make it easy but they made me feel like I belonged. Those two girls made me laugh harder than I had ever laughed before. 

Although we hadn't seen each other in far too long, she cooked for my kids while I was off on my coma vacation. They are still talking about that meal! I think they might be willing to ship me off to Emory again for another one of Mrs. Kathy's hams. 

Knowing that she fed my kids for me made me feel loved. 

Thanks, Kathy. You are your mama's girl and that is high praise. 

For a long time the doc was just Kathy's husband. 
Sorry Gerald.
He was busy getting finishing his residency and frankly I couldn't remember which sister he was married to.
Sorry again.

After a few years we wound up in the same Sunday School class. He eventually taught the class and I was finally able to keep who he was and which sister he belonged to straight in my head. 
Again with the sorry.

I sat on the front row with some of my people.
We were collectively referred to as,

Yes, with all caps. 
Because we always studied our lesson
and were ready to contribute valuable,
on topic, mostly appropriate comments.

Or maybe because that is where you make the trouble makers sit.
Just sayin'.........

Quite possibly, it was as a front row girl that I noticed his tendency to roll his eyes at me occasionally. 

He doesn't know this but my recent illness isn't 
the first time he has saved my life. 

He saved it for the first time many years ago
by listening to what was unsaid,
by reading between the lines.  

Believe when I tell you what a difficult 
task that is because I walk in the door with
lots to say. I like to arrive at each appointment
with a diagnosis and a treatment in mind. 

In fact, I like to refer to our meetings as consultations.
He once began an office visit by asking which one of
us was getting paid for the visit. 
Insert eye roll. 

He probably should have warned the neurologists at Emory.
The word sassy may have been used in reference to my attitude.

Anyway, thanks Doc. 
Thanks for taking care of me and my baby these last few months. 
You saved her life too. 

I know that's your job but

The prayers that I heard the two of you prayed for me and mine weren't your job though and that makes them all the more precious. 

Again. Thanks.

Just sayin'................