Tuesday, December 27, 2011

A photo says, 'You were happy and I wanted to catch that.'
A photo says, 'You were so important to me that I put down everything else to come watch.*

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

A Sprite is a Sprite is a Sprite

I wrote this a couple of months ago and thought you would like to read it AGAIN:Ground Zero
This is the little church at ground zero...or is it Ground Zero (caps), not sure...and I don't need to explain to any one of you what that means or where it is. I love this church. It's old and it appears that you can lift open the vaults (God I would LOVE that). I have taken the kids here twice. BOTH times they bitched. 90 degrees with 90 degree humidity in NYC is HAWWRIBBLE. I explained to them that this is where the families posted pics along the fence to find their loved ones. This served as a refuge to the firefighters and officers who needed to get in from the 'conditions' of that day/week/month. The trees are still there. A little piece of heaven in the middle of chaos. Do they get it? I'm not sure you can really EXPLAIN that feeling we all had that day. Whether you were in the middle of it, lost a family/friend, or half way across the US watching it on TV...you HAD that feeling. My kids were 3, 4, and 6. They barely remember to brush their teeth. They don't remember this the way other people do; the way we do. So, I walk around Ground Zero with the spawn in tow searching for a Sprite. Workers are everywhere building the NEW and improved Ground Zero site. I feel like Mother of the Year...GODDAMNIT you will learn something from this adventure...if I have to be miserable in this heat so will you, people, this is HISTORY!!!! They GET IT in their own way. They understand the relevance. As we walk down the street I follow my children...I watch them walk with their Sprites in hand...I feel small, and blessed...and safe!

Friday, December 16, 2011

My 16 Year Old Self

You can’t spell friendship without emotions; if you’re a friend of mine then I truly care about you…and it appears to work the other way around, too!

My close friends know that I am obsessive to the Nth degree about certain things. When I ‘like’ something it becomes topic of conversation rather effortlessly. Some OCD topics of mine: death, crime, murder, quotes (#1). Most of these revolve around insight and life choices…wisdom provoking…the unknown…deeper meanings of life. Hell, I didn’t earn the title of ‘Repeat’ without boring these dear friends (and some NOT so friends) with my words and insights on these matters. My dad used to call me Chatty Cathy when I was little, so you see I didn’t become this person as of recent old age…I was born this way (thanks Lady Gaga). Hell, sometimes they even had to knock me off of my ivory tower just to get me to shut up…problem is, I like the view from up there. I like talking about and thinking about the things that interest me. And if you are my close friend you have earned the title of ‘listener’. Imagine the JOY when I started a blog. Now everyone can choose to listen, or not to listen, to me rant and rave about what inspires me.

Get to the point, Amy. My BFF is Sammyk8 (that’s her internet name) found something she knew I would love in Sky Mall magazine. Several ‘celebrities’ were asked to write a letter to their 16 year-old self. Sammyk8 knew I would love one in particular because she has heard me write and talk endlessly about her, Jodi Picoult. This got me inspired to write a letter to myself, at 16 years old:

Dear Me: A Letter to my 16 year-old self,

Learn to slow down. Worry less. Happiness does not come from being skinny, having the best feathered hair, or knowing all the words to a Sting song. It does not come from the people that surround you at a particular time, but more from the people who can be with through the journey. Those countless hours spent with a handicapped mom that make you so mad that you can’t be with your friends will only make you into an incredibly caring and sympathetic person when you’re older…a trait you will pass on to your children, and hopefully their children some day. The people who think you were crazy and eccentric will be the same people who ‘like your style’ , value your opinions, and make you the envy of teenagers. If one person thinks you’re different now, realize a thousand will accept you for who you are one day. Your love of horses might make people laugh at you now, but you will have a daughter who is ‘raised in a barn’ and have dreams of her own on top of her horse. Your ability to do the ‘yucky’ medical care for your mother will develop a love of medicine and the less fortunate in your oldest daughter. Your outspoken and sassy nature will eventually be witnessed in your children as they stand up for what they believe in and NEVER allow them to be anyone’s doormat. Your hoarding of all the cards, letters, quotes, love song lyrics will bring comfort to you when you lose your mom, grandparents, and will help to recapture the love that people feel for you someday…they will show you that people are happy that you are in their world. Fight with your brother all you want, but you will develop a bond that is beyond words. Those countless groundings, family car rides, and family traditions will one day make you yearn to have those moments back again, if only for ONE MINUTE, to have all those people in one room again. Don’t spend your whole life looking for that ONE person. There will be several ‘loves’ in your lifetime. Your first kisses don’t matter as much as who your last kiss is. You will learn from ALL your mistakes and grow. You will make the same amount of mistakes when you are older, but you will understand the reasons why they were necessary some day. You eventually become the person that others needed you to be and you will understand and be grateful. It’s ok to eat when you’re upset, or not exercise; someday you will learn that the outside isn’t as important as the inside. Continue lending out your clothes, sparing a dollar for a friend in need, going that ‘extra mile’, this will become one of your greatest qualities that others see in you, especially your children one day.

Clean your plate when gramma cooks, you will miss it one day.
Clean your room.
Hug your mom. Tightly and often.

I love you, Amy xo

P.S. Don’t throw away those 80’s fashions, that shit’s going to be expensive some day!!!!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

December 1

People tend to use traumatic events to pinpoint change in their lives. 9/11 is one that we can all remember life before and life after… events that change us from who we were to whom we are following it.

December 1. Eighteen years ago today I sat next to my mom and did homework on a little couch that was next to her bed. My grandmother needed some alone time so I was ‘on watch’. I knew she was in Hospice care, but my mind protected me from that fact and I figured it was just ANOTHER ‘episode’ and this too would be overcome. My mother began to make interesting comments in those days that I would learn to be her ‘last’ days. She talked about angels that look like everyday people that walk among us. We never know who they are; we need to just know that they are there. It would be two days before she died. I didn’t go visit her the next day……………

My life has become divided into before December 3, 1993 and after. As if my life experiences are remembered based on whether it was when she was still here or after the fact. The date becomes a moment in time that STOPPED…. Whenever someone talks about the beginning of December I immediately think, “I wonder if they are talking about before or after THE DATE”. That is when I became a motherless daughter. I read the book, Motherless Daughters, following THE DATE. I particularly remember a letter from one woman that lost her mother ten years earlier and still grieved as if it was the day before. I thought to myself in my very newly found grief that surely that woman was crazy to be distraught and saddened TEN YEARS LATER! I come to find out that it isn’t about the years. It isn’t about another year without my mom. It’s about the love that was and always will be there. That hole in your heart that can’t be replaced.

My mom continues to teach me so many things even though I can’t see her. I definitely can feel her. When her song comes on the radio I know it was there for a reason. When I see her smile in my daughter’s own face. That’s the thing; it never goes away, even if a person does. My mother is the background music in my life. I may be busy living and struggling, or laughing and loving, but when the crazy world stops………you can hear it……you can feel it……….she’s there.

I had a dream that I don’t think was a dream. It was my house. It was unchanged. She was there. In her wheelchair. I went to hug her, expecting to be unable to embrace her because, come on, everyone knows ghosts are see-through. Duh. I hugged and I felt her. I felt her warmth, touched her hands, and felt love in return. Allison Dubois said, “Lately when I do readings the deceased say, ‘Even though you don't see making memories with me anymore, I'm still making them with you. When you die you'll flash back to all you did after I died and see me there laughing with you as I really was. On birthdays, at dinner tables, in the delivery room for family, I WAS there." This is what I felt that night and the dream that I hold onto in belief.

I know my mother is near me. She sends me signals to let me know she’s there. Recently it has been the alarm clock playing the most beautiful music, softly, in the wee hours of the morning. I’ve come to realize that an angel is walking among us; it’s just that we don’t realize that this particular one is my mother. Thanks for watching over me and continue to make these memories with me, Mom. Love you!

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