Monday, December 3, 2012

The Night Owls....

Peace, Love and Bowling....

For Lauren's family birthday celebration we did a brunch/bowling get together at Pinstripes.  Lately if I can switch things up, make them somehow different and less likely to pull me down into the depths of grief, I do it.  Except that in the new space I think of all the things mom would have liked.  The brunch with all the fresh fruit and salad.  She loved fresh fruit.  But we are doing the hard things here.  We solider on even when we feel like crumbling.  I have these two amazing kids and they can gauge my moods better than I can.  They can feel the sadness swelling.  They move out of the way when I crash.  It's not fair to them.  Yet I can only fake it for so long.  The tears must come.  The momentary release will come even if I try to force it away.
"Mom take my picture up here!"

I had the privilege of understanding how incredibly cool my mom was.  I probably understood this more after I had children.  When I was young mom was in ceramics.  I vaguely remember those nights as a small child when she would leave.  Pajamas on, dinner served....babysitter present.  I too now "make everything as mom would" before I depart on my own outings.  But I get that the kids would rather have ME present, ME doing the tucking and reading.  Things are just better, more secure, more gentle with MOM home.

But as a parent I understand that crazy desire inside to just be alone while you drive to wherever that escape is.  To listen to your own music and daydream and just shake off the day.  Feel that surge of excitement like you used to....before kids.  The unexpected awaits within the evening as you gather with a bunch of good friends and some clay and molds and paint.  Because it certainly wasn't about the ceramic bunny painted pink for Easter. 
Mom's official bowling bag...

Mom also was on a bowling league.  Her league was called "The Night Owls."  (BEST NAME EVER!) I will never forget the sound of mom's laugh and the way her mouth would open wider and she would tilt her head back.  I imagine the fun, the release, and that free feeling she would most likely have on bowling night.  (and a few cocktails too!) One stinkin' night away from the usual kids, dinner, dishes...

I was recently away from my kids for 24 hours and I cannot tell you the difference it makes.  I am more calm, patient, and relaxed when I return.  Less easily irritated by requests for food or interrupting when I'm talking.  I try to make these feelings last as long as I can before the normalcy of mom-hood creeps back in and can get the best of you.
I love the "shelf" for the shoes on the top of the ball...

Hubs told me to bring her bowling bag with to Pinstripes and when I forgot to bring it we turned around and came back home to get it.  Because this is pretty dog-gone epic people.  It didn't matter that I'm a size 8.5 and she was a 10.  

Mom's bowling ball fit my fingers perfectly.  However, Mom was a seasoned bowler and used a pretty heavy ball.  Since I bowl maybe once a year, I had to change it up to a lighter ball.  But I threw that TERRI ball down the lane with so much love that only a strike could be had.
"walking in your shoes Mom" xo

Someone asked me this weekend how Thanksgiving was, also assuming that with the upcoming Christmas holiday my grief will somehow heighten.  It's already as high as it can get.  And grief is funny.  It's not ever the big stuff.  We typically weren't together on Thanksgiving or Christmas. It's the other 285 days of the year that kill you.  It's the common, plain, lame, dumb days of nothing-ness that weigh you down.  All you want to do is pick up the phone and tell her about the ordinary greatness of life.  Because she somehow, in her mom way, made it all seem grand.  Why?  Because she just cared.  Cared through down to her bones.

Lisa showing her skills...
Evan Reed Thomas selecting a ball....

New traditions, new places, new faces....a new normal when all I want is what I had. I keep hearing her voice in my head telling me to just keep doing what I'm doing.  Keep doing the really shitty hard stuff.  And one day it won't feel this gut wrenching hard.
Lauren is SEVEN now.  She is the most incredible thing I have ever decided to do with my life.  Her little heart hurts too.  So we cry a bit and then laugh a bit.  Everyday.  We are walking the path together.
Lisa & Annika...
(sister-in-law & niece)
My game was on fire.  I channeled Mom and her NIGHT OWL crew.
I'm the T on the top of the score board with 126.
(winner, winner, chicken dinner)
Love ya Terri.
xo xo

1 comment:

  1. In tears again over yet another pain-filled yet beautiful post! So moving, the part about how it's the regular, normal days that are the hardest, not the big holidays necessarily. I can see that. I'd never thought of it before. You really are doing the hard things. It's so clear that you are a great mom to your kiddos. Just like your mom obviously was to you and your sis. Hugs.