In just a few minutes, Jonas will barge through the door, looking for the lunch I make for him most school days. Today we're having gravy-rice, perfect Jonas food. Though today, there may not be any such thing as perfect food for my son.

He's having a tough time this week; it's the end of the third quarter at school and he's flailing again. He's stressed and overwhelmed and just plain tired of having to function in high school. Remembering high school, I can't say that I blame him. But still, I have to nudge and push and force, if I have to.

Today Is Another Flaming Pile Of Shit (And That's Okay)

Yesterday was a tough, busy day filled with all sorts of exciting and not-so-exciting things and I was feeling it keenly. By the time Ian got home from work I was nearly incoherent with exhaustion so he sent me to rest while he made noodles to go with the experimental dinner I threw together. (Verdict: I'll make it again.)

This Is The Life I Am Supposed To Be Living

The end of last month was Christopher Robin's due date. Well, the fifth anniversary of Christopher Robin's due date, but you know what I mean. It was an anniversary that popped up on the calendar and I checked in with myself to make sure I was okay.

I was okay.

I mean, I wasn't excited about it or anything, of course, but I was okay. For reals this time. It came and went with me privately acknowledging the gravity of this missing space in my house, and then moving along with all of the fullness in my life.

On Juggling, Transitions, and Not Liking Either

On Christmas morning, Jonas nearly dove under the tree to retrieve a very strangely shaped present.

"This one has been bugging me," he said. "I have to know what it is."

It turned out to be a juggling set; three red balls and an instruction booklet to walk him through it step-by-step. Judging by the look on his face, it wasn't the best gift he'd ever received. Maybe not even the thousandth best. That was kind of a bummer because I really thought he'd get into it. He'd mentioned juggling a few times before and always gets a kick out of watching Ian juggle. Well, out of watching Ian juggle and then drop stuff all over the floor.

The Merriest Kidmas

In a plastic storage bin, in the office junk room, there is a beautiful ribbon that is supposed to run through the branches of our pre-lit artificial Christmas tree. It is a beautiful ribbon and fills me with great joy when it does its job of tying together the whole Christmas ensemble. It's even worth the pain of keeping it in there just so, without having it bunch up here or sag gracelessly there as the whole tree gets rearranged by tiny, excited hands.

But this year it sits in its little (not little) storage bin and I honestly couldn't be happier.

One Hundred Word Wednesday: Birth Day

In 1999, I became...myself. He was born and just like that, everything changed. He was born, and I was a mother.

I went to recovery while my little boy started his stay in the NICU. I got flowers while he got intubated. I got congratulated, and he? He got an incubator.

Twenty-six measly weeks. Five insufficient days. Two pounds, three ounces. The baby, my baby, fought every scrap of unfavorable odds.

Words For My Son On His Fifteenth Birthday

Tomorrow my tiny, two pound baby is turning fifteen and I honestly couldn't be happier. It's been tough, I'll admit, raising a teenager. He started high school this September and seems to be blazing down some checklist of teenage shenanigans as if he's behind schedule. But still. He's amazing and I wouldn't change him for the world (or my therapy bill).

Milestones, Etc

Originally posted to Livejournal February 1, 2010

Dear Christopher Robin,

I know that you probably wouldn't have been born on your due date even if I had carried you to term, but it didn't make Saturday any easier. Your dad was home from Dallas this weekend, which made it a lot more bearable, but that's only saying so much.

Family Recipe

My sister's in Mexico this Thanksgiving week, so I'm on my own to make the turkey. It's rare, but not unheard of for us to be apart during the holiday. We've been making this meal together since we were kids.

We have a system, most of it involving crude humor as we shove delicious balls of bread and meat into a gaping carcass. My mother's Portuguese sausage and bacon stuffing is the primary reason we make a turkey at all. It's a delicious roasting pan that doubles as a side dish. In my family, for as long as I can remember, the stuffing is always king.

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