Sunday, June 27, 2010

My "doing life together" friend...

I cannot tell you how fun it is to really think about the friendships, the women, who make up my community. It is certainly interesting trying to fit people in categories-to boil them down a little to make a simple blog entry.

This friend I have known about for a almost 12 years. I have seen her, had little chit chat conversations, talked about weather and children and houses.

About 3 and half years ago, when I was pregnant with Mahone, I really started talking to her. I was home and she was home and as the weather became nicer, well, the chit chat became more frequent, the conversations a little more personal and the tea began to flow.

Well, considering she lives about 3 doors down from me, you can imagine how it really didn't take much for a casual-"I know you" to become a real friendship.

She has two girls, older than my boys. They have very much developed a sibling relationship in which they are the older sisters. That comes with all the love and all the fights typical of any sibling connection. They cuddle Mahone, fight over who can hold his hand and the oldest has even "babysat" ( I say that loosely given that we were literally down the road, but hey when you are 12 and someone pays you $10.00, it is babysitting!). The children love each other and I love that they do.

We really do life together. 

I see her almost everyday. We have tea together almost every day. We talk about what we are having for supper, I let her know my daily weekend plans, we look at the flyers together every week and decide where we will shop and what errands we need to do. I am there for the birthday parties, as her assistant-she is there for mine. We watch movies on Saturday night at my house. The husbands visit at her's. I look through a billion paint chips to help choose the perfect bathroom color. She helps me re-arrange my living room weekly. She has seen me in my pajamas, with all my hair sticking up and no bra!!! I have sat on her bed on Sunday morning as she wakes to watch Cornation Street. Yeah.... life together!!!

The friendship really is based in the everyday. We have opposing views on tons of "deeper" issues-a woman's right to choose-I am pro-choice, whether a mom should/can work outside the home (obviously since I am doing it, I support that choice), the purchase of more expensive, but ethically made products/food (she LOVES Wal-Mart) and the list goes on.... 

She is an unbelievable helper, she is an unbelievable mother and someone who loves on my children, she is consistent and always there, she is so fun and loves to dance and sing. 

She is a neighbor, she is a friend, she is family.


Friday, June 25, 2010


So when I was reading my blog entry about my "Diana", I thought I could write a entry like that for other friends as well. And when I shared with my "Diana" what I had written, she was so touched that I would write about her that I thought..I don't think we communicate the "heart" stuff real well... or at least I don't communicate the heart stuff real well.

So I will write a series (a short one considering just how many really close friends can one have) on what some of my friendships have meant to me. In thinking about this series, it has been really interesting to really see the uniqueness of each friendship and their role in my life, and how so often it reflects the stage of life.

So today, I am talking about a friend I met about 5 years ago. We attended the same church and for the first little while, I never really connected with her. We attended the same bible study and eventually they held it at their home and somehow, over time, we started connecting. Our church had a winter thing at a farm and I invited her to go with her children. She came and I think we spent every Saturday together...and lots of other days as well... for 2 years. The friendship began based on having someone for our children to play with, and became of course something deeper...

She was then, and still is, the person I could tell my deepest darkest secret to. She is completely trustworthy; I won't feel any judgement, any condemnation; She isn't going to hold it over me, remind me often, "rub it in".

Somehow our friendship became that really....I think (I hope) I was that person for her as well. We shared lots of fun times, lots of "darker" times, lots of family birthday parties, births, drama!!!!

We were/are very different in personalities, opinions, lifestyles, but somehow it worked. She inspired me in so many areas and continues to do so.

So she moved....not far, but you know how it is with kids, and working full time and life.... that "not far" mids' well be 2000 miles away. And while I rarely see her, rarely talk to her, am truly not involved with her life at all.... well, there are times I long for her. Sound a little weird-maybe so, but that is the only word I have for it. There are times I just need to tell someone that one not great thought that keeps running through my head, that one fear I have for my child, that one marriage issue that just lurks.....

My life is full; her life is really full. I think I cannot be the friend I need to be, the friend she needs me to be with the distance and our lifestyle (being working all week and spending weekends at an arena somewhere!), so I exit, I keep in touch through the computer, through this blog thing. And while I get it in my brain-I get all the logical factors-the heart I think just misses her.


PS: check her out in blog land. She really is doing some neat living....

Rain rain go away....or just maybe stay around awhile.

When it looks like this on the outside:

It looks like this on this inside:


Jenga, marbles, puzzles, and a helper washing dishes.... You see I am the rare person who actually likes it when it is rainy, dreary, gloomy. Don't get me wrong, I would not want that every day for sure. I just may go a little crazy literally if that was the case. But to me, a perfect weekend is rain one day, sun the next. 

I feel pressure when it is sunny. Pressure that I should be out there in it-with the kids, on my own. We just should get right out and get doing something. The children refuse to stay inside if there is even a peek of sunshine, the neighborhood comes alive here with everyone out playing and working..and well, that is all good. BUT.... sometimes I just want to be hunkered in with a good movie, a game, just us 4 together, without feeling the guilt that we really should be out there, without hearing the children whine and whine (is it only mine that whine!!!) because they want to ride bikes, go to the park, help with the ball that is stuck somewhere...and without having to chase Mahone around!!!

So rain, visit here often.......


Monday, June 14, 2010

She really is my Diana......

If I am even close to being Anne....

So I have this friend... well, even friend sounds too casual, too insignificant. She is someone I have only known for maybe 2 years, but really-a lifetime. We joke that we share the same brain and are in fact only 1 person. It is a joke, but so real at the same time. I have seriously never had a friend like her...and I don't mean that in a negative way against any of my current friendships or even friendships past-they are all dear to me for lots of reasons, but somehow she is different.

You see I don't always like who I am (and trust me, there are lots of reasons for that-and a post for another day), but I like who I am with her. I never feel judged, never feel "not enough", never feel like I should be better, be something, someone different. She is totally accepting, and believe me, she has seen some not so pretty parts of my personality-the mean side, the petty side, the jealous side, the perfectionist, the controlling nature-yeah, she has seen it all!!! and somehow I am okay with that, and thankfully so is she.

She perhaps is the most thoughtful person I have ever been around...and not just towards me, towards everyone. She has the ability to remember the smallest detail of something you said, bring it up again to you in conversation, remember to ask about it, tell you she is thinking of you, empathize, buy something for you because you mentioned one time in passing it was your favorite childhood candy-she really is that person. A little too good to be true right??? I kid you not.

So really I should not have been surprised. I should have expected what I found on my desk today when I came into work. She has that habit-finding the neatest things in who knows where that I would never think of getting myself, but they are perfect-exactly something I didn't even know I wanted or loved!!! But today, well, it takes the cake, and not just because it was amazing, so unbelievably generous, so so something I desperately wanted, but because she knew my longing and upset wasn't even really about the THING, it was deeper......

Yes, you are looking at the blush tint-you know the one. I don't think I need to re-tell that incident-thank goodness because I am truly just getting over it... You see it really wasn't about the blush or the money wasted, or the mess in my room or on my bag. It was my bitterness really that I felt I had NOTHING of my own-NOTHING SACRED. My room is occupied most nights by my children, my house is a nice mixture of toys and children's books, scattered with actual furniture, my free time is spent entirely with them, I share my tea in the morning, my juice at supper..... well, I think you get the picture... and while I may not have said all of that to her, I think she got it. I think she knows me well enough to know my true sadness-well anger really-was deeper and I think she wanted to make it better.......and oh, she did....

So you see, she is my Diana-kindred spirit (even if she really doesn't even like Anne of Green Gables!!!)


Sunday, June 6, 2010

Stay out....

This is what you install on your bedroom door when you come in from outside and your almost 3 year old looks a certain shade of red and you wonder and wonder-what is that?? and sadly the realization hits and you are almost afraid to look....the white duvet and see I had in my LUG bag (yes, that would be about an $100.00 purse!!!), another small zippered bag, and inside that small bag, was this new blush/skin tint (NOTE: TINT) that I just purchased three days ago. I realize Mahone's face is the exact color of that tint-funny so is the bag, so are the books in the bag, so is my floor... you get the picture!

 The back story is important here for you to really grasp this: you see in November in Toronto I saw this fancy blush that was aghast $30.00 and I COULD NOT bring myself to pay that for me... I mean, seriously vanity right. So, I asked Gary for it for Christmas-somehow as a gift, it seemed more appropriate. Well Christmas came and money was tight as per usual, and I said-don't get that for me.. Months passed and I would go and look at it-for torture really when finally 3 days ago I decided-enough is enough. I am worth it- I would spend it on the house, I would spend it on the children, I would spend it on Gary!!! So, I purchased and used lovingly for 3 DAYS!!!!!!!!


Sometimes it is simply no fun being mom.... I like him today, but I can tell you yesterday, not so much!!!!!


Saturday, June 5, 2010

The Fair....

Day after day this week we have been driving by the set up for the Fair-the Ferris Wheel, the Strawberries that spin and spin, the really poor quality stuffed animals being hung up for display, the lights, the music.... Each time we pass, Mahone and Seamus, in unison "I can't wait, I can't wait."

I promise Friday night, opening day. So, Friday comes and Gary is not feeling well, which leaves just me with two little ones at the Fair-this may not seem to be such a big deal, other than I am crazy paranoid at those types of things with "creepy people" and my children. I know that sounds terrible and perhaps irrational, but if you knew some of what I know-well let's just call it a workplace hazard!!!! I also have a 2.5 year old that is fairly certain he is 10 and is way too mobile and fast and basically into everything!!!!! I also do not go on any rides-back to irrational fears again. I don't like the feeling, don't like the movement-I am not an adrenaline junkie by any stretch of the imagination....So combined this makes the Fair really not fun at all..

Luckily, grandma and grandpa again to the rescue and the Fair turned out to be lots of fun after all....with only one mild injury and one temper tantrum-all in all, a success!!!!






Tuesday, June 1, 2010

What is "special needs" anyway....

So the doctor's say-"you're little guy has special needs.."; the teacher says "be assured, we can accommodate your son's special needs";  I say to friends "hope everything goes okay with the playdate-not sure if you know but our guy has some special needs."

We have parented both our children using a waldorf approach. A part of that philosophy believes that children are not born necessarily with their temperaments. They sort of "come into their personality" between the ages of 6-9-only after they lose their first baby teeth-it is a whole other post to explain the teeth thing, just know that losing those teeth is SO important in Waldorf philosophy. Anyway, I say all of that to highlight that while we may believe that, while we parent our children sharing many of Waldorf principles and ideals-well, we KNEW Seamus' temperament real early....not only before he lost his baby teeth-to be honest, before he even had those teeth.

Since Seamus was a baby, we as his parents thought something just wasn't the same as other children. But we were new parents, our first child and quite frankly, what did we know!! Also, having the job I have working with children every day who are truly suffering with emotional difficulties, well, you start to sort of make everything a big deal. Fast forward a few years and we finally had to admit we were at a lost. Hard to admit really when for a living you help kids and now I couldn't help my own!!!!

You see I was on my soapbox preaching that he was just a regular boy and our society didn't handle regular boys well and there was nothing wrong with him, but there was something wrong with everyone else-as an aside, I still truly believe our society does not handle boys well, but again, another post. But really my soapbox was actually hurting him. He was out of control, he was not managing school-an alternate Waldorf school that really provided lots of movement and hands on, lots of the boy stuff he needed. He also was not managing home-or more accurately we were not managing him at home, especially with the tantrums. When I say tantrums, I do not mean a 20 minute fit, I mean a 2-3 hour explosion that would always end in something broken, a room trashed and both of us sobbing...

So I got down from my preaching post and sought help. Not necessarily the conventional help at first, choosing to focus on helping him process his emotions, rather than just dealing with the behavior. After some time, Seamus was diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder. This was a whole new world for us, including a change in diet, at home "exercises" and therapy with an Occupational Therapist. We immediately changed our perception of him and our approach to him. We finally understood him (As an aside, if you are interested in learning more, read the Out of Sync Child-excellent resource). Later he was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder (like every boy could be I'm sure-see that soapbox preaching coming out!!!). Most recently our doctor, who I really really didn't like, yet who has turned out to be quite wonderful, has implied that we may actually be looking at a mood disorder that could possibly develop as he comes older, something like Bipolar Disorder. Who knows!!!!

I wrote this post because a couple of people who know me outside of this space have been asking some questions about our journey with Seamus-hope this is helpful. I also realize that people are reading this that I may not even know who maybe on similar paths-please be encouraged!!

Seamus certainly meets the definition for "special needs", but to us, he is simply SPECIAL. He is everything I wanted in a child-spirited, independent, free thinking, creative, dramatic, opinionated, kind, compassionate, a real "go big or go home" personality, competitive-yet feels bad for the other team...Well, we really like him in this house and to be honest, I couldn't have always said that!!!

So again it is nighttime and we know how much Seamus comes alive at night. Buzzing around me playing with his skateboarders (Techdeck I think is the official name). He is showing me what "grinding" is-if you are interested it is when you run the skateboard along a metal railing. He has just finished eating his second supper  (his medication really impacts his appetite and he basically does not eat from breakfast until about 6:00 at which point, he then doesn't stop until he is in dreamland!). He has begun to make his own ramp now with some clay and some cardboard he has found around the house. It wasn't working out quite like he thought, but no throwing the materials in frustration tonight (although that could still happen)-for now, he is sticking with it, trying a new paste to hold it all together.

I'm off to convince him that perhaps the skateboard race could wait until tomorrow as the bed is calling for us......What did I tell you-special right!!!