Like Mother, Like Son

It’s the first official day of summer vacation.

I say “official” because my youngest child has already been on vacation for two weeks, and my older two have had half-days for most of this week.  So it was a nice gradual sliding-in start of the vacation.

My oldest is spending the day at the beach with friends.  I am crossing my fingers that she is a better fifteen-year old than I was, and trusting her when she says that she and her friends will not be drinking or diving off the pier.  Well, I’m trying to trust her.  I’m trying really, really hard.

I remember being fifteen.

I will probably only see her this summer when she returns for clean laundry and spending money.

My fourteen year-old has already retreated to his bedroom with video games and a salami sandwich.  I may not see him again until September unless I lure him out with occasional promises of homemade food.

And my youngest? Well, it’s not quite one o’clock, and so far today he and I have:

  • Baked Black-Bottom Banana Bar Cookies
  • Checked the chicken coop for eggs six times
  • Walked to the mailbox three times
  • Walked to the dam to throw rocks at the bluegills
  • Had a toy animal parade through the living room, laundry room, kitchen and bathroom
  • Practiced baseball with a big plastic bat and ball
  • Played three games of Sorry! and two of Monopoly Junior.

Through it all, one thing has remained constant:  the boy Has. Not. Stopped. Talking.  Not once.  Not for a moment.  Not to breathe or eat, or drink.   Talk, talk, talk.  Every third sentence out of his mouth begins with “Hey, Mom?”

I have not had a complete thought since 6:30 this morning.

Right now, I am pretty sure my mother is looking down from Heaven and laughing her ass off.

My kids look nothing like me.  They all three inherited their father’s beautiful blue eyes and long legs and even his shoulder-dimples.  They’ve all three got his natural grace and coordination.  Not one of them is short or clumsy or stocky like me.

But my oldest thrives on an audience, just like me.  My middle one is voracious reader, just like me.  And my youngest . . . well, he never shuts up.

It would seem that he is his mother’s son.  A wild imangination and a steady stream of great ideas chasing each other around in his mind.  And not enough hours in the day to say or do everything that occurs to him.

And the attention span of a hummingbird on crack.

Anybody hear that?  It’s the sound of my Elementary school teachers, babysitters, relatives and childhood friends having a big collective laugh over the fact that Karma is bitch-slapping me right now.

Off With Her Logic!

“Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.” – the White Queen, Alice in Wonderland.

What are the six impossible things you believe in? (If you can only manage one or two, that’s also okay.)

Believing in six impossible things before breakfast isn’t as difficult as it sounds.  Most of my beliefs are pretty impossible or at least defy logic.

I believe in God.   I don’t necessarily believe in organized religion.   I know that Christianity doesn’t always make sense; that so much of it depends on having faith in something that I can’t see or prove.  But I have to believe that there is something, someone with a plan.  Someone bigger than I am, someone in charge.

Rational and scientific people can show me all kinds of proof to the contrary, but I will never stop believing.  My faith is as much a part of me as my heart and lungs; I couldn’t survive without any of them.

I believe in ghosts.  We have a ghost in our house who likes to turn on the TV during the night.  She seems to especially enjoy Craig Ferguson.

She stands beside our bed and gives me a sad, sad smile whenever one of my kids is sick or troubled about something.  I’ve done my research so I know who she is – or was—and I think it’s pretty cool that she watches over our kids like this.

I believe in love at first sight.  I don’t believe that it only happens once in a lifetime or that it lasts without a hell of a lot of hard work, but I believe in that sudden, instant connection that goes deeper than simple attraction.

I believe in luck because I am the luckiest person alive.  I hate to mention my accident again, but think about it:  the tree that landed on me was roughly four and a half feet in diameter.  It landed on my head hard enough to break my spine in five places, but didn’t crush my skull or damage my spinal cord.   It landed on my chest hard enough to pin me in the vehicle, but didn’t damage any internal organs.   I lost use of fingers on my left hand, but I am right-handed.

Best luck of all?  My kids were in the vehicle but were unharmed.  Luck.  No other explanation.

I believe in trusting instincts.  If it feels wrong, it is wrong.  Period.

The best example of this is a story my father used to tell.  He picked up a hitchhiker while driving cross-country in the 1970’s, but the kid made him more and more nervous as time went by.  The kid –Jeff—was polite and clean-cut and did nothing to arouse suspicion, but Dad said his gut instinct kept gnawing at him until he finally kicked Jeff out of the car at a bus station.  For years, he told us about Jeff and promised that we would see him on the news one day.

We did.

Jeff’s last name was Dahmer.

My final impossible belief is this:  I believe in Karma.  Not as some vindictive force that will smite the wicked and so forth.  But as just a certain degree of justice in the universe.  Mean people don’t win.

Sounds childish, I know.  But I believe that fate will eventually get around to everyone.