“The Reason”

For you, I will play “The Reason” less often but I will never stop thinking of the look in your big sad, brown eyes after the fight with your dad. You were younger than thirteen, I think. My heart breaks for you every time I hear that song, it reminds me of your hurt and deeply saddened face.

It captures a moment in time, not all moments have to be good, I know you think they should but you will learn later in life that the bad moments teach us things as well. We get past them, we appreciate when they have passed, we learn from them.

I know you don’t like confrontation, except when you delight in starting it, your dad, will run miles to escape anything even slightly confrontational. I’d rather he yelled and screamed but his family brought him up to ” sweep things under the rug.” They don’t fight, they don’t express their feelings, they hide.

I’m so glad you and your sister have parents with different styles but I’m afraid your sister is definitely like dad. She makes dad seem like a beginner; he is emotional compared to her. There are layers and layers of this beautiful young woman and even if I try to delve inside a bit, try being the operative word, she closes up like a clam shell in a matter of seconds.

You and I wear our hearts on our sleeves, but your sister hides her emotions, I think she shows you the most emotion she shows anyone and I am so glad for that. The fact that you and your younger sister are best friends is better than winning the lottery for me, I never had that relationship with my sister. I don’t know what that feels like but I’m sure it feels wonderful. You have a built-in best friend.

When I was pregnant with your sister (or brother at the time) I swore I would do anything and everything to not have the kind of drama and angst that my sister and I have. I am not going to assign specific blame here, part of it was our parents’ fault, part our own. But, in any case, it is not a healthy relationship and seeing you and your sister together makes your dad and I so happy.

Luckily, your two cousins have a close relationship too. The four cousins loving and liking each other is incredible, growing up we had nobody. I take great joy that the cousins have each other and will always have each other. I’m sure my sister feels the same way.

When the grown-ups are gone, I know you, your sister and the cousins will be close, maybe your kids will spread the icing on the cinnamon rolls at Christmas.

We indulged this morning.

We indulged this morning. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

 

Certain memories get stuck in our brains for different reasons. Why I reacted so strongly to you sitting in your room, playing that song, I’m not sure but it is one moment I will never forget and I know you know that. Luckily, it was one of the rare sad moments of your life.

I remember more, you’re smiling face, you being the prankster, tricking your gullible mom ALL the time, your enthusiasm for food and your kind and sensitive nature. We know each others’ mood over the phone, the breath before we say “hello.” I’m here for you always, I’m sure you know that but once in a while it’s nice to have a reminder, for both of us, I’m sure.

 

 

 

 

 

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Dear Daddy,

I’ve meant to write you for a couple of days but now I NEED to write you. You were always there for me when times were tough, especially when times were tough. You were the only person who really knew me because our personalities were so similar.

I know I’m just having a very bad day and they happen from time to time but this one is unusual. I feel like I’m getting beaten up by everybody

and I don’t know why. I don’t have you here to defend me or to want to get back at the people who are making me sad. I do know that if you could, you would although I’m not so sure you would defend mom.

No matter what she did, you defended her but her tone today, I know, you would have been the one to say “take it easy” and she would have listened. Her ordering me around like she is the commander and I’m the soldier was horrible. Something is not right. Does she think that the holiday season is only hard on her?

Losing Lola and Don and Ellen were tragic losses, believe me, I know. I went to the funerals of two of them with her. Anna went to one of them so she was always supported. There’s not much else anyone can really do. Both Emma and I call her every day, she boasts about that to her friends but sometimes  it seems I can do nothing right. At least that’s how it feels to me.

I’m not in their club of two, my sister and mom, they are so similar and our club, you and me, doesn’t exist anymore, talk about grief. Yes, I know it’s a rough time of year, with you dying on New Year’s Eve

and you and mom’s anniversary on New Year’s Day! Not such good timing, Dad. I  remember our last Christmas but the grief comes back in waves of sadness and anger. You should be here, playing Santa and ringing the stupid bell you always rang. If only you could come back for just one minute to ring that bell and to give me a hug that I so desperately need from you now.

Well, the day is almost over, I’m hiding in my bedroom, yeah I know, not the right solution but that’s okay, I just need a little time to myself. Your granddaughter is out having fun and your grandson will be home tomorrow. At the moment he is the one worrying because, like me, he is so intuitive and he heard my voice on the phone. I know I worry too much, oh stop laughing, but I try not to do that. I can’t help it if I read headlines and get scared. As most parents, I worry about my children.

You know I love you, of course you do, thank you for the signs you send me (I could use one soon, please.) Do I wish you a Merry Christmas in Heaven? It’s been so many years  you would think my grief would have mellowed but today it is raw. I don’t understand that at all.

I’m going to play some music now and settle down, I know I’ll be fine in a few minutes. You know I’ll be fine, I always remember what you and Mom said: “That beneath the mushiness, deep down, I am steel” and I know that’s true. I’ve had to be many times in my life. I love and miss you so much but I am glad you are not in pain anymore, that’s for sure. Say hi to Lore for me, quite a prank she pulled on us at her funeral. It seems like Diane and I both thought we were the sole “Augusta.” Only Lore could get away with that. Please tell her I miss her too, I really do.

All my love,

Your little mouse

PS The dog just pushed the door open, jumped up on the bed and kissed my whole face which she generally doesn’t do. She knew I was sad, I feel better already.

Just A Simple Happy Day

I’m sitting in my bed, with my red dog Lexi lying across my lap, I’m watching her breathing as if she was a newborn. The day is thinking about turning to-night but it is not there yet. The sky is white with gray in the background, leafless trees sway softly in the sky.

My husband is in his office working on a project. My daughter is home from college, in her room, most probably watching a series on her laptop, her door, closed and I am smiling.

There is nothing extraordinary about this day and I love that. I took the dog in the car for a long ride. She loves to stick her head out and see the world, she smiles, people smile ather, joyful. It doesn’t take much to make her happy.We headed to the bakery, I heard that they were making mini jelly doughnuts which I must buy and one big chocolate chip cookie for my daughter. We’ll be there again Sunday too for the big, puffy

huge ones and we will buy another jelly doughnut for our son. If there is one food that brings me back to a happy childhood memory it’s a jelly doughnut. My dad and I loved them and we would have them every New Year’s Eve. I’m just carrying on the tradition…and practicing early. He would be so proud.

My son will be arriving in a couple of days, I really don’t know when. I think  Saturday but you never know with him. I like not knowing so the wait does not produce anxiety at all but rather a sweet, low excitement that i can look forward to when he arrives.

It feels like Thanksgiving was half a year ago but it was only a matter of weeks. Parents everywhere are enjoying having their children home. I feel for those parents who have lost their child, I could cry with their pain even imagining it.

We are blessed. Let’s all keep those families in our hearts and prayers.

I should be folding laundry, or washing the floors or organizing the presents that Santa’s helper gave to me to wrap. I’m doing none of that right now. I’m feeling happy as the day turns into early evening.

After many years I am reading again and I am thrilled. I don’t know why couldn’t read a book for so long, I always read. For years, though, I couldn’t read anything and now I can which is a great relief. That treat fills my soul full with hundreds and hundreds of candy canes kissing.

I refuse to focus on the bad news in the world, there will always be bad people and poor judgment and horror. Sometimes I get involved and feel the pain, today I am not focusing on it. While I probably can’t do it every day, I will try to remember this calmness.

My stomach grows for dinner, plain and simple leftovers, nothing fancy here, we don’t have the money to go out. Leftover pizza, salad, eggplant parmigiana, garlic cheese bread.How can you not look forward to THOSE leftovers. And of course, after dinner, my own small, roly poly jelly doughnut, its sugary film, sitting in my delicate fingers, turning it this way and that, taking that small first bite. Happiness is real, especially today. I wish all  days could be so peaceful for me and for everyone else. I’m trying to remember what it feels like, I know it feels good.

So Raw, Doubled Down.

( I wrote this many days ago but was only able to publish it now.)

 

 

 

 

 

My dad has been dead for a very, long time. He died at the age of 79, he would have been 91 today. He didn’t die after a long illness though he had heart problems for many years. I’m not sure he was ever the same after he had quadruple by-pass surgery when it was a VERY new and rare procedure.

 

He did have the same doctor President Clinton had and I know my dad would have just loved that to pieces. I can see him in my mind saying “Well, the surgeon practiced on me.” That literally would have been a “my dad” kind of saying and he would often laugh at his own jokes. I realize I laugh at my own jokes with the same pleasure, I get the same rolling eyes from my kids that I used to give to my dad.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You would think that after such a long time the pain would have dulled, and for the most part it has. But, there are days, like today, that the searing pain is so overwhelming that it feels brand new. It’s as if someone had plunged their hands into a recently healed wound on the outside and ripped it open with callous hands, blood bursting everywhere, red, raw, and then pouring in lemon juice. THAT kind of pain. Car accident pain. Torture.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You think you will never get away from the pain, your body, your tears, you are wracked in pain and overwhelming sadness and you feel it will never stop. It does, get better, but you will live with this experience for the rest of your life. When people tell you “time heals all wounds” I say, don’t believe them. Yes, it gets better, day-to-day, but no one can promise you that there won’t be significant days that you will feel your grief with the same intensity.

 

 

 

Every part of me feels breakable and I wait for time to be alone so I can cry in private. A lot of time has been spent in my car just sitting alone. I try to think back and wonder if I am always like this on his birthday but I am sure I have never been this bad. Do I say this every year?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think that my dad missing out on his grandson’s exciting news about getting into medical school is killing me. My father, my son and I are very close in temperament and for that I am incredibly grateful. In my heart, I am sure he knows, but others mock me and I get tired of defending my beliefs. I know, to me, what is true and that’s all that counts. But, I admit living with three atheists and non-believers sometimes gets to me. They may not believe in messages from the afterlife but I do.

I was always like my dad. He is the missing link in the family dynamics and it is a dire loss for me. My mother and my sister can’t possible understand it but how could they, they are exactly the same. My dad was the one who knew me best, knew what I thought and felt instantaneously. I always had support, I always had someone on my side, someone who understood me perfectly. That died 12 years ago.

 

I am going to buy a piece of cake tomorrow and eat it in his memory,

 

angel cake slice yummy

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I got my sweet tooth from him that’s for sure. I am weepy now but I hope when I wake up tomorrow I will feel better.

 

Dad, I would do anything to hear your voice, to have you call me your little mouse, to have a hug only a daddy can give. I know you were suffering and yes, I was glad that you had no pain, you weren’t yourself for the last few years anyway.

 

But, selfishly, I remember my old dad, the way you were in my mind: kind and strong.  If you wanted raspberries that cost five dollars, when they were not in season you would buy them,  as I would, because money didn’t matter, “if you had to have them.”  You were the first foodie, you used to run on the beach in the sixties before “jogger” was even a word. You were so nurturing, optimistic, warm and kind. You live in my heart forever.

 

Happy Birthday Daddy. I miss you. I will always miss you. I just wish it didn’t hurt so much still.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy 4th of July, Independence Day

English: The Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra p...

English: The Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra performing at the Hatch Shell in Boston. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Arthur Fiedler & The Boston Pops

Arthur Fiedler & The Boston Pops via last.fm

When I was growing up, every 4th of July, my family would be glued to the television set to hear the Boston Pops and to watch the fireworks burst and boom on our television set. It was a tradition set in our middle-class red brick apartment building in Queens.

We were the last family in the neighborhood to get a color television set. I had already glimpsed the wonder after seeing The Wizard of Oz at my friend’s house and still remember the feeling of awe, not knowing there was color in the movie.

My parents finally bought a color tv during the Olympics after seeing Dorothy Hamill skate like a swan at our dear friend’s house.  I “worked” for Lore for many summers in her gourmet chocolate shop, oh, I KNEW my chocolates!  She sent me care packages in college, she spoiled me but most of all, she always understood me, my fellow Libra. I miss her every day.

My dad loved to watch soccer, he would yell and scream at the television enthusiastically, you could hear him shout from any room. He also loved watching any type of ceremony: parades, marching bands and all celebrations.

Yesterday, I talked to my best friend and after and we hung up, I reached for the phone to call my dad. I wasn’t feeling sad or morose, it just seemed natural until I remembered that he has been dead for a very long time.

Fireworks July 4th Independence Day 2013 Polo ...

Fireworks July 4th Independence Day 2013 Polo Field Fort Sill Oklahoma (24) (Photo credit: HiRez Dude Colin Henderson ch@cnhender.com)Today, July 3rd,

Sometimes, I will watch a show or listen to music that I know my dad would love, it makes me feel like we’re listening to it together.

A memory just popped into my head: the first bad heart attack my dad had, had been on Father’s Day when my son was 6 months old yet he refused to go to the hospital until I was so upset I started crying.  My mom and I took him to the Emergency Room. My father’s complexion was pasty and green and I remember he was sweating but he never clutched his heart, he just felt a little unwell.

After blood tests, the young, snippy doctor told him “he was a very, very sick man.” And, he was, he needed quadruple by-pass surgery which back then was definitely out of the ordinary.

My husband and I had a six month old son that I had never been away from but I was the one who stayed so I could help my mom and be near my dad.  I hate driving in the city but being with my dad was just too important than my own fears.

Luckily, my father was able to be transferred to the city for the complicated  operation and my mom and I waited in the hospital for 7 hours.  Saying good luck to my dad right before the operation, was one of the hardest, most gut wrenching things I have ever done and I know he felt the same way. Don’t let anyone tell you NOT to cry, it’s really okay.

It felt like a hammer was breaking my heart in pieces. Thank G-d it was a success and he lived many years after that.  It occurred to me today my dad was allowed to go home from the hospital on July 4th, Independence Day. I remember making a sign for him.

Mending a Broken Heart

Mending a Broken Heart (Photo credit: Free Grunge Textures – http://www.freestock.ca)

Certainly, it was a day to celebrate.

 

 

Calling All Cheeseburgers (Food Cop)

We have eaten salad for the last four nights. Our daughter, the vegetarian, approves. I’m glad and it’s healthy but I cannot go another night eating just salad.

Salad

Salad (Photo credit: SliceOfChic)

I need a cheeseburger.

I’m not kidding, I really miss red meat and I haven’t had any in months. You would think this would be the time to turn off my craving for red meat and stick to vegetables but why really?

We eat so little of it that I don’t think I should blame myself for having a little red meat when I want, it’s like my blood is calling out for iron. Okay, it’s basically because I am craving the cheeseburger and the french fries, I admit it.

English: Homemade cheeseburger with french fries.

English: Homemade cheeseburger with french fries. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Tomorrow, my husband and I are going to get cheeseburgers at a small place in the neighborhood. Their burgers are absolutely divine, their french fries are thin crispy and salty. My cholesterol is fine and my weight is wonderful. I exercise. I look good.

Why am I rationalizing this treat? I have no idea. I guess it seems like I should. Partially because I know our daughter will look down or be disappointed at us but then that happens often she is turning twenty very soon. I can deal with that.

Tonight I ate eggplant with tomato sauce. I had to have a snack at midnight, the salad and eggplant left me starving at 11:30 pm.

eggplant with fresh tomato sauce

eggplant with fresh tomato sauce (Photo credit: Endless Simmer)

I am looking forward to biting into a medium cooked juicy cheeseburger, crisp fries dunked in ketchup and the small salad that comes with it (which I may or may not eat.)

I can’t wait.

 

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Thursday’s Thoughts

Rain

Rain (Photo credit: Moyan_Brenn (back soon, sorry for not commenting))

The rain is dripping from the sky but the sound it makes, splashing across the window, is comforting. Talking (no texting) with my son makes me smile. My husband is doing day labor work for a friend, today he is a Plumber’s Assistant and he is proud. I am proud as well.

Yesterday I talked to my mother; when my mother feels scared she gets very nasty, especially to me. Why I am her whipping post I’m not sure, but I have to deal with it better than I do. It takes me 12 hours for me to get it right and she never remembers what she says. I should know that by now but while it happens I seem to forget it and regress.

My son is about to meet with the President of his University to go over the recommendation letter that the President is eager to write for him for Graduate School. My son is a rare combination of brains and sweetness.

My daughter is beautiful and brilliant, I had not viewed her as an adult until we visited her last week. She will always be my baby in my heart but seeing her in her suite with her friends made me look at her like an accomplished savvy adult. “My baby” is all grown up. I was always known as “the little one.”I would give up anything if only I could hear my father say it one more time, with just one more hug. I miss him.

Father & Daughter

Father & Daughter (Photo credit: Enigma Photos)

When I picked up my dog, Lexi, she ignored me. She would not look at me and hesitantly jumped in the car, not with the same excitement as usual. She did not give me kisses. Once inside the house, she sauntered over to her water bowl and drank it all up, not giving me so much as a glance. After a while, I went upstairs to lie on my bed where she always keeps me company; she hid under the bed. I just gave her space. I understand getting used to changes, I’m the same way.

In a couple of hours she warmed up and forgave me for leaving her at her favorite sitter’s house while we were away. She jumped on the bed, circled around until she found just the right spot, her body touching mine and fell soundly asleep. It was a very deep sleep, she sighed with relief, I felt her body relax, she was home, we were safe, then she gave me kisses.

 

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FWF: Kellie Elmore, Jhana’s Daughter

 

English: Two candles in love. The flame is inv...

English: Two candles in love. The flame is inverted heart shape. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My name is Jhana, I am very old but I have a young friend translating for me. She knows ‘Merican language real good. Now we start: “The pain in Jhana’s old heart was searing now. The intensity, the throbbing came and went but there were times when she would kneel on the dirty, muddy floor and weep. She only did that when she was sure she was alone. Jhana’s children, all except one, brothers and sisters all lived near-by but she was not looking for comfort, she knew there was none. None for this type of her anguished heart.

We are alone with our grief she had learned through the hard times even though we have family for whom we bless. It took more bravery and strength to be able to hold on to love, than to dismiss it. Love is fleeting, like birds in the sky. That, she knew. Love was there, deep down but could you feel it all the time? Of course not. You had to imagine it, rely on it, pray that it would be there or come back to you. Have faith. Love was an assumption only.fwf4Apr

Love was not the “smiling, holding hands” we would look at in the American magazines that the girls would find and hide under mats, and yes we let them. They looked at something called “romance” not true love but we let them. They did not yet know our plans to move to ‘Merica in a year or two years.

Here, in India, I would look at second daughter’s face as if I was looking through her, I had no problems with my other four children. Why was this child so different? The love was always there in my heart, in her father’s heart and siblings. What happened that was different for this child of mine? How could she not know our love? Did she not know that her father and I blessed the differences from her and the others. She was our pearl, our stand-alone gem. If anything she was more loved but would not take it inside herself.

The other older children could play and work and keep busy but this one held feelings deep inside her heart or just could not communicate. There was hurt and anger, deep inside hammered in to her heart but yet she could not forgive. Nor would she allow us to apologize for something we did not know about. She would not give in, she would be strong, very strong. But, I knew better, of course I did. Well, I thought I did. I was her mother.

This was not a betrayed love, this was a love that ran so deep, only a mother could know. I waited patiently until the day she would find her way back to me. Where did we go wrong I asked the husband? He said of course “we did nothing wrong, she is the child.” But, a mother is different, I tried to tell him. No, that is not the answer.” he told me.

I imagined looking at your face with my two hands one on each side like pressing on cold, hard glass. Press too hard and chips of glass would embed themselves in your fingers, blood would run down slowly each time. Not enough to scream but just enough to notice. I would imagine you trying to get away, twisting, fighting and screaming but my love for you was stronger than everything. You could not run away forever. I held you close, I would not let you go, ever.

I tried to forget the unforgiving words told to me about what you called me and how you viewed me because I do not follow that life. Love was a mystery that couldn’t be easily explained. Where was the joy, the simplicity, the laughter of love? Did it exist past the many layers of the wall you created? As a mother I dearly hoped but I could not know, you would not allow me to know.

Beautiful child, lovely child. No matter how old you are, you still live in my heart no matter what you do or don’t do. There is the difference. I will always cherish you, always love you,  for the goodness in you that I see, that I feel. Yes, certainly. Two hearts, even those estranged, can come back and beat as one.

Until the last breath I will love you. Do you hear me child? Does anyone?  I will say it again and again since I cannot see you, my eyes have failed me many years ago. But, I would still know your face, my hands might be gnarled and brittle with illness but my heart knows, will always know that you, beautiful heart, was so blessedly loved every second of every day and night.

I will wait until the last breath has left my body, which dear one, I know will be soon. I will never give up on you, you see I was learning Patience too and different ways of loving. None was right, none wrong. I was changing too.

That is a mother’s truth spoken in my body now and in the next life. I promise this to you. I love you now and forever. Look for me at night, in the sky, I will be watching you still, loving you, when I am gone.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Free Write Friday-Words

A golden pearl necklace.

A golden pearl necklace. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A white pearl necklace.

A white pearl necklace. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

train – burlap – fiction – pearls – vertigo

Elizabeth sat upright, wearing a navy suit and sweater in the train. Her only adornment was a string of  pearls that she had been given by her mother, passed on by her grandmother on her 18th birthday.

Normally she would be dressed in jeans and her college sweatshirt with no pearls, her hair down but her mother forced her to wear this dreary outfit once every six months to visit her grandmother or “Grandmama.” Her mom really didn’t ask for much so she did it, but complained more and more each time.

The old bag was horrid, so demanding and old school, prejudiced and controlling. She only wanted Lizzy to be “associated” with upper crust white people like herself. Ugh. Lizzy smiled to herself, she definitely wanted to show grams the latest picture of her and Steve, her wonderful boyfriend who happened to be black, kissing in one of those photo booths. Just the thought of it made her laugh out loud.

Her mom was definitely cooler but when it came to her own mother she acted like a puppet probably because the old bag was a rich  bitch. “This is the last time I am doing this” she said out loud to nobody in particular. But, the train had stopped at her station and she willed herself to get out and walk towards her “Grandmama’s ” house although she had to admit, she wasn’t feeling as proper as she looked.

When her grandmother came to the sitting room she offered Elizabeth a cup of tea from the silver tea set which she accepted graciously.Her grandmother’s face turned sideways abruptly and stayed like that. Lizzy had no idea what she was doing. In a few minutes she was stabbing her cheek with her index finger. Lizzy started to giggle, “what on earth is she doing?” she thought. She really tried to stop but once giggling starts it takes on a life of its own. She bit her lip, trying to stop but burst out laughing. When she was quiet for ten seconds grandmother said firmly “Elizabeth Warren, I demand you to kiss me on my cheek!”

At that, Elizabeth lost it, she really did, first she stood up and howled and then when she calmed down she stood up in front of her Grandmother and said “Excuse me? You DEMAND a kiss? First of all that’s gross and second, no one demands me to do anything. Do YOU understand? Her grandmother was so shocked she said she was getting vertigo and that she might faint but Lizzy knew she was faking it.

“How dare you talk to me that way, Elizabeth! I am going to phone your mother and tell her what you have done.” “Feel free” Lizzie answered politely. She was mad at her mother for putting up with this but there was no way she was going to stand for it.

She stood directly in front of grandma and slowly unbuttoned her blue jacket to show a tight Tee shirt that had The Grateful Dead design on it, she pulled off her navy pants and showed off her beige leggings. She went to the garbage and disposed quite elegantly of her navy blue pumps and was feeling quite pleased with herself. She had taken a huge bag which had her ballet flats in them, because she planned to go to a concert afterwards anyway. She thought for a moment whether or not to ditch the pearls but she decided to leave them on, after all, her mom gave them to her.

Her grandmother’s eyes were wild with anger yet she was speechless, no one ever had disobeyed her like this before. Finally, before she left, Lizzy sat down on the couch and told her grandmother what her life really was like. She showed her the hemp bracelets that Steve made for her, dyed in different colors, she even tied one on her grandmother’s wrist. She made sure to show her the photo booth photos, she stood up, thanked her Grandmother for tea, exited quietly and shut the door behind her.

When she finally got home after seeing the concert her mother asked her how her visit was, with her grandmother. Apparently her grandmother hadn’t called. She grinned widely, shrugged her shoulders and said “fine.”

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Popcorn, Previews And Fruit Cocktail

English: Unpopped corn kernels, prepared for p...

English: Unpopped corn kernels, prepared for popping. – Studio photo of Popcorn. Taken in 2011. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For years I was the type of person that would not start eating her popcorn until the movie started, the official movie. I would wait out the commercials, the “Exit” sign warnings, the “Please Do Not Disturb Your Neighbors” and “No Smoking” announcements. I didn’t even start eating my popcorn during the previews which to me, are almost as good as the movie itself. I had rules, my own strict, self-imposed rules.

Until last night where I saw the movie “Gloria” and as soon as we sat down and immediately I began munching on the popcorn and sipping Diet Coke. Hey, look at me! I surprised myself and then thought, “what on earth have I been waiting for all these years?”

Delayed gratification is fine when you are young and you want to save the best for last. The way I used to eat “fruit cocktail” or “fruit cockentail” as one of my kids used to call it was representative of my style. I would eat the most banal fruits first, picking out the pears and eating them first. Then I would sequester the peaches and eat them after that. Next to last would always be the plump, juicy grapes, it was a close tie for first and second but really who could not have the fake cherries as their number one favorite. I mean really, I was a kid.

I think if I would have it now (and don’t put it past me) I would take a spoonful of everything right up front, maybe sequester a few grapes for the end. The squishiness in my mouth is utterly delightful. But, the cherries? No big deal anymore. They don’t elicit the same excitement as they used to do when I was little. In fact, they have no taste.

Maybe growing up and getting older you realize you don’t have to wait to the end to enjoy the best things last. Why wait? I’ve always been surprised when my daughter used to read a book’s ending before starting it. This to me was unheard of but you know what? I kind of understand it now.

I don’t think I could ever do it, it’s just not my style but I understand her now, apparently she was a better teacher than I was. She always wanted to see her birthday cake as soon as it came in the door unlike her brother who wanted to wait until the last second, when I would come in with the candles lit. I admit it, I am more like he is.

I’m learning from my two kids, more and more. I love it.

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