Thursday, September 29, 2011

Several things

I may be crazy taking two toddlers to a nice italian place by myself, but I did and the boys were complete angels. We even got a compliment from the extremely surgically enhanced couple sitting by us.

I was so ultra productive today that I decided to balance with total unproductivity this evening.

I am watching a marathon of Felicity reruns. The reflection in the netflix computer screen, when it goes black between scenes, looks like my Mother.

I finally got new shoes. Maybe my feet won't hurt so badly. One can only hope.

I didn't take a shower today until the boys went to bed. Now I feel good and clean.

That's it for now.
Connected by DROID on Verizon Wireless

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Hand written letters

For years and years, I wrote letters and sent cards to people. I don't get around to writing as many as I used to. I even wrote letters throughout college. I never really got response notes. 
The only person who wrote me back as a kid was Anna.  She and I were pen pals for years and years. Now we keep up via facebook.
It is sort of a bummer these dyad when I check the mail and there is nothing there but junk. In the back of my mind, I think to myself that all those letters I wrote will amount to some "real" mail in the mailbox. I sure hope so!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Memoirs: Chris, part 2

There are other times I remember mission trips spent playing Bryan Adam's "Everything I do," working in clothes closets and food pantries, performing for talent shows and in musicals, going for the first and only time to Chris' house, playing basketball, and cheering for all the RA games, and more.
A couple of years after the Amy blabbermouth experience, Amy and Chris started dating.  I was so angry and hurt when I found this out.  She knew what this would to do me!  And surely he knew something about my crush by now!  It was during this time that the flame I had for Chris began to dim.  I started seeing other faults in him: smoking, drinking, rebelliousness, differing opinions, skipping school, etc.  It was also around this time that my brother, Jackson, and Chris were at odds with one another- fighting and arguing.  I took on other crushes, filled my notebook with other guys' code names and initials.  Chris was still on the list, but not on the top anymore.
When Chris' crush status dropped a bit, that's when I actually got to know the real him, but by then it was too late, we were already seniors, getting ready to graduate.
Actually, Chris ended up not graduating.  I was so upset about this.  I felt hurt and betrayed!  He'd been with me through everything, but he wasn'ts going to go through graduation with me.  He was so smart and he knew everything!  He got a 1375 on his SAT's, for goodness sake!
  I only got a 1100! And here I was graduating from high school and from the youth group- in a way without him.
That last summer was tough.  He still went on all the trips, but something was different, something had changed.  I was so sad to leave and let go of everything: church, home, friends, the youth group, and of Chris. 
I remember coming home from the mission trip thinking that this was the end - the end of an era.  We drove through the streets of Raleigh, my eyes welling with tears.  Chris was sitting in the bus seat in front of me.  (Amy draped by his side)  I (daringly-for me, that is) reached my hand in front of me and placed it on his shoulder and said something like "This is it, you know?"  He grabbed my hand and held on and said, "I know."  He held my hand through the next few turns to the church and when we arrived to the parking lot, he squeezed my hand, which to me felt like he was saying "It'll be ok."  I left the bus that day, letting Christopher go.
I went off to Boone, NC to go to college.  I told myself when I got there that I'd keep up with certain people.  Chris was one of the people on that list.  I wrote him letters from school telling him what was going on and how I was doing.  I kept on writing, but never received anything in return.  My sophomore year, I received a letter from Chris.  In it he wrote about how good and loyal of a friend I was and about how thankful he was for our friendship and the letters I sent.  I cherished the letter, read it a hundred times over, kept it in my journal.  I've written Chris off and on for 10 years and that letter is the only one I've ever received, but it is enough.
One last story...We had a lock in one time during which Chris was playing classical guitar.  I told him then and there that I wanted him to play at my wedding.  I laughed at my own boldness in even saying as much to him.  Years later, I got engaged.  One of the first orders of business for planning the wedding-get Chris to play and he did.  At the rehearsal dinner, as I went around the room, I introduced my guests to one another.  When I got to Chris, I decided to lay it all out on the line.  "This is Christopher," I said, "I was in love with him practically all my life."  Everyone giggled, thinking I was joking or something.  But I being for real and I think he knew it.  (and if he didn't, my other good friends were sitting with him to verify the facts.) That night, after everyone left, I stopped to talk to Matt.  He didn't seem shocked or amazed by what I had said.  It didn't phase him a bit.  He just smiled, gave me a hug, and carried his guitar out the door.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


We are supposed to be on break from Hyaets for two weeks.  This way, we can regroup, recenter, rest, and get some other things done.
I have a long list of things I need to get done during this time: plant new plants, research, strategic planning, budgeting, find a routine that works...
Instead, I wake up to find out our house mate thinks he brought bed bugs into his room IN OUR HOUSE and he's in great pain and needs us to go with him to the doctor. OH, and the great big Hyaets project that we have been assigned to work on during our break...well, the neighbor who promised to help out couldn't get it all done, so I am working this afternoon for a couple of hours on said project. These were not on my list. Neither is the migraine that I now have or the sick husband or the laundry someone piled on my bed or the dishes piled in the sink...or the strange smell in the Hyaets clubhouse...or the dog and his meds...or the dirty floor that was just swept and mopped yesterday...

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Memoir story #1(part 1): Chris

(name changed for my own sake, though everyone knows who it really is)

I really don't remember when Christopher came into my life. In fact, it is as if he's been there all along. Like a shadow on a sunny day or the smell of maple in October, Christopher has always been present. There at times when II've noticed and times when I have not.
Once, when I was rummaging through some old pictures at church, I came upon a polaroid of my three year old Sunday School class. There, standing around and on top of the toddler sliding board were many of my childhood buddies. Ty, Anna, Marcia, and I stood with others and smiled with big crooked smiles. Off to the side of our beaming group stood Christopher...grabbing his crotch with a big ole grin.
I was in highschool when I found the crotch-grabbing picture. I laughted at it for days and then decided to share my joy with everyone else in our youth group by posting it on the youth Sunday School bulletin board. No one else laughed as hard as I did over the photo. It seemed like everyone just brushed it off as a silly, cute, little shot. I, however, thought it was hilarious: early 80's clothes, grinning face, and hand between the legs. After a few weeks of posting, I quietly took the photo and placed it in my Bible. From there it made it home and eventually to a photo album.
This is how it has always been. I somehow ended up paying close attention to Christopher- what he's doing, who he's with, what he's wearing, what choices he's making- and everyone else seems not to notice or if they do notice, it oesn't seem as important to them as it did to me. It all started by virtue of us, me and Christopher, being the same age and in the same grade. We learned together, sang in the kids choirs together, ate together, and played together. I remember really noticing Matthew and identifying him as someone special and unique sometime in elementary school.
For a while, us kids would stay for lunch and discipleship training after Big church. Christopher was always the one who knew the answers to the questions in Discipleship Training. He said his parents read to him from the Bible. I wanted to know all the answers and stories too. I wanted a children's Bible like his and I wanted my parents to read it to me. Christopher was also the first one of us to get baptized. I wanna say that he got baptized when we were in the 4th grade, but it may have been even earlier. I wasn't ready to be baptized yet, but I sure did think that he was really cool, smart, and neat to have gone up to the front and all. I admired him for being so certain of himself, of baptism, and of the answers.
On the fourth of july, our church used to gather at Meredith College for swimming, recreation, and a big potluck picnic. It was so much fun to run and play and to be around all my friends celebrating together. For a few years, several of us girls would have a slumber party after the 4th of July picnic and fireworks.
I remember one 4 of July slumber party when I invited Hollis and Amy to spend the night. We stayed up almost all night talking about who we had a crush on. After much prodding, I finally confessed to the girls that I had had a crush on Christopher for years. Hollis, my lontime friend, already knew this, but it was new to Amy. I remember being nervous about talking about it and I remember hoping that nothing would get said to Christopher about it. I should have known better! The next week at church everyone was, it seemed, talking about me and my crush. I was so embarrassed! Christopher, or maybe a messenger- I don't remember- came up to me and asked if it was true. Too embarrassed amd scared to admit it, I denied my undying love for Christopher and went home sad and ashamed. That night, I spent a lot of time crying and wishing Amy was dead.
I likee Christopher so much that I memorized all sorts of details about him. Full name, birthdate, parents names, phone number. I memorized his phone number by putting the numbers to the tune "867-5309." I wrote his initials with mine all over my notebook. I gave him a code name, "blue eyes", so that I could write about him without anyone knowing. Only my closest friends knew and I didn't let them in on ALL of my secrets.
One of the most upsetting times that I ever got into trouble was because of Christopher. We were in children's choir rehearsal. I set next to Stuart. Stuart sat next to Christopher. Stuart was acting up disrupting rehearsal to get attention. Miss Pam, our leader, asked him to leave the room. She took him outside in the hallway to reprimand him for his behavior. While Stuart was getting talked to, I thought I'd be sneaky an dmove over one seat to sit next to my crush, hopint Miss Pam and Christopher would not notice the difference. When Miss Pam walked in the room, though, the first thing she did was notice! And I was in big trouble. She took me out in the never broke rules or got into trouble...and told me how disappointed she was in me. I was yet again so upset and embarassed that I hid in the women's robing bathroom and cried until I was red in the face and my mom had to come find me and splash water on my cheeks.
At some point around the beginning of middle schoo, Christopher decided that he would go by "Chris." This was a very difficult change for me. I had not been in love with a "Chris!" I had been in love with "Christopher." With the name change came other changes as well...Pink Floyd shirts, guitar strumming, and longer hair.
It was around this time that I witnessed Christopher's first ever mistake, in my eyes. We had graduated to the youth choir, of which my mom was director. One Wenesday night during rehearsal, "Chris" had come in late. (mistake #1) And he was wearing a hot pink shirt with RED umbro shorts (mistake #2). My mom always said that pink and red were tacky. I remember giggling to myself about his fashion faux pas and being amazed that Christoper,could commit such a heinous act.
In the seventh grade, our youth minister started the middle school retreat. About 20 of us when up to camp Caraway to spend time getting to know one another. I remember riding up to Caraway listening to Whitney Houston, Extreme, and Queen. It was on this trip that Christopher's guitar playing skills made their debut. I distinctly remember we were in the guys' cabin just hanging out trying to pass the time when Christopher got out his guitar and played "More than Words." I simply wanted to melt! I also wanted to sing along, to pretend as if we were a duo, which is what I thought we were meant to be. But, I didn't do either. I sat their listening and pretending that his playing was no big thing.
This trip was also the first experience that I had with Spin the bottle. The girls convinced Chris, Stuart, and Robert to play. Some of them knew I had a crush on Chris and others knew that Kathryn had a crush on Robert, so they started up the game hoping to play match maker. After a few turns and a few pecks, the stakes got higher and suggestions of time spent in the dark closet were thrown into the mix. It was at these mentionings that I made my quiet escape- scared and anxious to think of what might happen if I were paired with Chris in the closet: Would I be rejected? I don't even know how to kiss! What if we get caught by the chaperones? My scaredy cat chicken self took the fast escape route, but regretted it later.


In 2006, I decided to start writing my Memoirs. It kind of sounds funny to start your memoirs when you're a healthy 28 year old. But, I did. I wrote down a couple of stories in a three ring binder and set the notebook on a shelf so I could come back to it. After writing several stories, I stopped writing. I moved on to some other project. I pulled out the notebook today. Thought I'd type out the stories and post on the blog.


I want to get things done, but I'm exhausted.
I want to make things, but I'm in a rut.
My feet hurt, I need new shoes. I can't find the time to go to the store. I can't convince myself to spend the money.
I had to replace my new phone with another. I don't want to re-input all the info, apps, and good stuff. But now that I've become dependent on the phone, I need some of that stuff. (lists, contacts, email)
I need to exercise, lose weight. I'm not interested.
I want a free weekend-free space-free time-free house, one without children, without responsibilities, without accountability. Not for long. Just long enough. Not really possible.
I'm not in a bluesy place or a sad place. I almost feel lazy with a side of heavy.
We're supposed to get a two week break from Hyaets, but others are heaping responsibilities onto my plate. I'm full, people, I'm full. And looking at you as you're working hard and taking on more and more only serves to make me feel guilty and heavier.
We eat communally, we pray communally, we discern communally. Can't we rest communally too?