Monday, December 28, 2009

Gently Quickly Peacefully

We carried our dog, Gordon gently into the doctor's office and laid him on a burgundy blanket on the floor. The lights were lit dimly. There was a fake orchid plant on the covered table behind us. Next to the well worn blanket was an old wooden rocking chair.

How many people held their beloved pets, rocking back and forth, to death? How many?

Gordon went peacefully. Quickly. He fell asleep and his heart just stopped. Quietly. Quickly. It seemed so easy, to easy.

He is gone.

And life goes on.

His passing marks an end of an era of little kids and endless hopes and dreams. His passing reminds me how humane we can be to our animals but not so to our Mothers and Fathers. He died gently, peacefully. He just went to sleep.

I will never forget him. Just like I will always remember "Little Boy," my childhood Chihuahua.

But Gordon was special. I know all dog lovers think their animals are special, but Gordon really was. He was kind, compassionate, funny, rambunctious, easy going, and lovable. He was the perfect dog for our family.

"An end of an era," is all that passes through my sad and tired mind. "An end of an era."

God-bless you Gordon. You will be missed!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Insanity or Crazed Motherhood?

OMG! So much has happened since my last post. I have been busy trying to stay sane. I haven't accomplished my goal. 2010 promises to be a year that is going to really put me on the brink of insanity. I can feel myself slipping into the deep abyss. I am standing, teetering, trying desperately to hold on. I know I sound melodramatic. But really I'm not. I'm not sure I'm going to make it.

Wouldn't insanity be better than this?

I have to learn to laugh at myself as I picture myself frazzled and dazzled, like a deer caught in the headlights.

Every day, except yesterday, since Winter vacation began, Kyle has given me a run for my money. And it has not been pretty. It has been so confusing that I couldn't even write about it.
Yesterday was the first peaceful day I had. And so here I am writing my thoughts. Finally.

Where do I begin? Bullet points are in order.

  • Kyle wants to drive across the Richmond Bridge with his girlfriend on a rainy/windy night at 10:00PM to visit a friend in Point Richmond. No way! Kyle and I both get in pissy moods.

  • Kyle is pissed that he can't meet his friends in San Rafael for ice cream at 10:00PM because he can't make his 11:00PM California driving curfew. Kyle and I both get in pissy moods.

  • Kyle can't understand why I won't let him spend the night in his girlfriend's dorm room. Kyle and I both get in pissy moods.

  • Kyle wants to spend New Years in Tahoe with a bunch of his friends, including his girlfriend. I tell him he can spend New Years Eve with them but then he has to come spend the rest of the nights with us and his Grandparents in Tahoe. Kyle and I both get in pissy moods.

Everyone has told me that when your kid goes off to college you will be ready. Even eager for them to leave. I didn't believe them. I still don't.

However, I see a distinct trend emerging. Kyle would rather be with his friends than us. And I don't think there is a way back from that. I think it is all over. Done. Complete. End of story. It has been a great run, but the show is now over! And it happened in a blink of an eye. And my heart aches.

Today, Kyle is going with his girlfriend and her family to the theater and dinner. Will has a date with his girlfriend to see Sherlock Holmes.

And on top of all of this, tomorrow we have an appointment to put our family dog, Gordon, down.

And I am just going through the motions. I am placing one foot in front of the other. I am just not sure that my foot will land on solid ground.

Strange thing these children. Advice needed!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

So, Christmas vacation is finally here. And it is wonderful to be at home with the kids. Peace is restored. It just wasn't easy getting to this place.

After Will's bout with the swine flu and all the school he missed, he had so much homework to make up! And then he had to shadow a couple of independent high schools to see if he wanted to apply to them.

And Kyle was busy and stressed about finals!

I did the smart thing and headed to New York during the last week of school. I wish I could say that I took off for a fun little excursion to the big apple--but it was work. Fun work-- but work!

So, I avoided the stress at our home. Almost! I came back the last night of finals and you could literally feel the air sucked out of the house. Everything and everyone felt deflated.

But things changed quickly. The last final was over for Kyle and Will had only one day left of school.

I picked up Kyle and couple of his friends after their last exam and took them to lunch. I had so much fun with them. How wonderful it is to be able to hang out with your kid and some of their buddies when they are not filled with obligations and pressure. It was a little bit of heaven.

However, that night, at 9:00PM, Kyle decided he should begin studying for his SAT test that he is signed up for in March.

This took me completely off guard. I looked at him like he was from another planet?

He looked at me with the look of a lost child.

A few weeks earlier, I had signed him up for a SAT prep course that costs a fortune. I had told him that he needed to be in charge of his own schedule and that he should realize how expensive it was and make sure to take full advantage of the opportunity. I didn't know that I had just put more stress on my already stressed out teen-ager. Oops!

After I realized he had scheduled a lesson the day after finals, I told him he should think about canceling the lesson. I told him I thought he needed a break.

Well, I pushed some mysterious button and Kyle fell apart! All the stress of the last weeks broke from within my poor son's exhausted body and he didn't know quite what to do with all his pent up frustration. Finally, he decided to take it out on me.

This time I really don't think I did anything wrong. I actually think I got it right for once. Because I had been away I had the clarity to realize Kyle was just letting off steam. And I knew I had to let him.

The next morning he awoke a brand new child. He was smiling again and we spent the morning together. It was perfect.

I know this won't last. He will be forced back to face the ridiculous anxieties of his junior year of high school! This makes me so unbelievably mad! It really is wonderful to spend the brief moments of time you have with your teen-ager when he is not stressed out.

When did life change? When did my child become more stressed out than me? He is only 16-years-old!

For now, I hope to celebrate the holidays with my children close at hand. I wish everyone could celebrate with their loved ones near by. And I will cherish the peace. And I will believe that it will last. One never knows!

Monday, December 7, 2009

How exciting. It's my birthday. I really mean it. I love my birthday. I know I am suppose to dread being another year older but I don't think of it like that. I am delighted to have a special day and catch up with all my wonderful friends and family from around the world.

I also got to go to The House of Prime Rib last night with Kyle, Will, and Tom. We were ushered into a cozy bar area with a lovely fire. As we waited for our table, I remembered birthdays past when I celebrated with my Mom and Dad and Sister at a restaurant called Lawry's in Los Angeles. It is just like The House of Prime Rib, only here they take reservations.

It was delightful to share my past with my kids. They gobbled up their chilled salad using their chilled fork. They ate huge pieces of prime rib, bone intact and inhaled their yorkshire pudding. Kyle dabbed horse radish all over his meat, my favorite. And the bake potatoes were truly decadent. They were submerged with huge amounts of butter, sour cream, bacon bits, and chives.

We all came home feeling sick. But there was a wonderful feeling of Christmas in the air. And the air was cold. I kept hoping for snow. Snow would have been delightful. I told the kids they didn't have to go to school if it snowed. Tom looked at me like I was out of my mind, but he spent much of his youth back east so snow days were meant for real snow storms. But we are Californians. If I saw a single flake, the kids would be home today!

I have the whole day to look forward to. I feel like I am five. I remember my fifth birthday party. I just couldn't wait for the party to begin. I went around the already set table and ate the m 'n m's that were designated for my friends. My Mom didn't mind. She just refilled their bowls.

I used to have the most elaborate birthday cakes. Hansen's of Beverly Hills made gorgeous cakes and Mom always splurged. One birthday, one of the cloth figurines caught fire. It was very exciting.

I miss my Mom and Dad today and especially my sister. But I will enjoy the day for them, 'cause I know they are with me.

So, here's to turning 52-years-old and still acting like a child. It's great. I recommend that you all try it out. It beats the alternative.

I have to give one of those shout outs to my friend Kathleen. She told me I had to post today. This ones for her!