I Do. I Did. I Confess.

Last night I had some free time to myself, so I read over everything I had blogged for our anniversary in the past.

It’s funny how the things I wrote then – while true – are actually much more evocative and realized today. It’s like a self-fulfilling prophecy. They were mere truth seeds – powerful in their makeup and design – but not yet fully or half bloomed through. Now to be fair, full bloom takes forever or never and a day, if it happens at all. But oh – the potential and beauty! It’s thick. It can overrun your garden, and the the soil and the foundation will just expand to fit it all in. I’ve seen this.


I see this.

I do

The truth seeds were grown, with their potential and their capacity, and we hopefully have a lifetime to see them realized.

To realize them into bloom.

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The things I say today, are some things I’ve said before but I can’t even begin to tell you how true they are today. How messy it all is – like your blooming garden – wet and naked, dry and warm, always changing, always needing change, always finding a way to crack, to bend, to grow, to bloom, to rest, and to do it all again. And again. When they crack, they let the light in.

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There is just so much to say about nine years ago that I can barely write. His Converse. My hair. His hair. The Jedi Knight robe. Moose and wolf light projections on the tent. A horse and carriage? Yes, a horse and carriage. It was that or a golf cart.

Showing Scarlet and Des pictures of the horse and carriage is MUCH more satisfying. “Oooooh,” they breathe when they look at the wedding photos. Look at you!” Look at us indeed. And of course, nine years in the blink of an eye? Well, no. Not when you fill in those lightning quick years with long days of cross country driving and two pregnancies, and tons of “LOST” and “Doctor Who” watching. And this crazy journey of child-rearing. Sometimes, it’s hard. Like the know-it-alls said it would be.

And what we knew it could be.

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Those same people who tell us to hug our children tight because “time goes so fast and you’ll blink and they’ll grow up.” Well, I hug those children nearly 12 hours a day and I couldn’t possibly do it more, short of keeping them up all night. And still time will go so fast and I’ll blink and they’ll be grown. Then I might be sad. And what will I be left with? Well, other than the knowledge that I raised two great kids into two great adults? You. You are left, standing with me. This is what we planned.

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So yes, it can be tough. I think we’re hard on each other a lot, due to stress and dreams too big to fit into a world with sometimes narrowing choices. We always dreamed BIG. We still dream big. And, we will always dream big. And I’m talking big. Maybe not fly away in a Tardis big, but as close as you can get to that. Northern lights and a place where moose and wolves co-exist in relative harmony. More Bruce Hornsby nights. These are all real. And oh, what a gift that is.

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I confess that one of my most vivid thoughts on my wedding day was this: “Oh man. Will my waist stay this way after children?” It’s the little, strange things you remember. The little, petty thoughts that stay in your head. The things that don’t really matter. So it’s ok to say it did/does matter to me, and I’m happy to say that I love my waist today, like I did then.

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I confess I never had a single shred of doubt about the man I was marrying. I mean, you read this, right? No room for doubt. Cold feet in general? Yes. The whole thing was a mind trip for me. The relatives, the flying, the being the center of attention.

Although, the groom was never in doubt.

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I confess that I didn’t enjoy all of the reception much – my stomach and feet hurt greatly. However, the ceremony was one of the single most meaningful, spiritual and enjoyable 45 minutes of my life. I was in an all-around love trance.

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As I mentioned above, I confess that the choices to get up the hill to the ceremony were: on foot in silver shoes, in a golf cart, or in a horse-drawn wagon. I felt a little strange taking the wagon, but I admit it had style. In the carriage with my parents we said, “Is this really happening? Is this real? Pinch me? After all that..this..it’s happening?”

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I confess that our Ketubah was designed from the map in the movie TIME BANDITS. As it should be!

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And, that my mom made the centerpieces and when I saw my childhood favorite, Donald Duck, I broke into tears.

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And, I confess that I don’t really remember what the cake tasted like but LOOK at it! Whenever I looked around after the cake had been served, I smiled to see some of our favorite people eating chocolate moose and chocolate skulking wolves.

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I confess that we took a fun dance class at the Cheryl Burke dance studio in SF and I forgot a few of my steps at the end.

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And that there were a whole lot of us.

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I confess that I almost broke my leg during a strangely punk rock, extended version of Hava Nagila!

love

And that the song I chose for the father/daughter dance was “Drive” by The Cars. Not your typical choice, for sure, but it has always reminded me of him. “Butterfly Kisses” gives me hives, anyway.

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I confess that this photo was taken during the Time Warp. Obviously.

Rocky Horror Picture Show

And that maroon is the single best color in the world.

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I confess that we lit up a Vermont night. And late at night, we had projected images of a moose and wolf on the tent.

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I confess that there’s always a higher. I once thought love faded or turned into eventual annoyance and complacency. And I know that can and does happen, and I know I’m “only” nine years in. However, I do know there’s an alternative.

And we’re lucky.

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Does toddler Cassidy remind you of anyone?

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Happy 9th Anniversary, Love.

I’ve Got Kindergarten Flashback Fever

We came. We sat. We CONQUERED kindergarten registration!

I thought I was nervous registering my firstborn for kindergarten, but it turns out, I got as nervous with my second! Here's how he's rocking life in style.

I sat in the corner and set the kids up with crayons and paper. Des adorably shouted out across a long conference table, “Hi Mama!”, and his beaming voice brought smiles to other nervous parents. Were they nervous? Was it their first time? I was nervous. It wasn’t my first time. I chatted with a friend and watched several people come and go. I thought I had grace on my side but I was sitting in the back and the Registrar couldn’t see me, so she kept getting paperwork from others first. I sat.


And occasionally talked to the kids across a long table.

I thought I was nervous registering my firstborn for kindergarten, but it turns out, I got as nervous with my second! Here's how he's rocking life in style.

My friend left and the kids continued to color quietly, shout my name over a long table filled with parents, or sit on my lap at the same time. They started bickering and my nerves got the best of me. A dad who came much later than me and pushed his paperwork ahead of people waiting, then continued to ask the Registrar a ton of questions she shouldn’t have had to answer. I rolled my eyes so hard it hurt. I really hope no one saw me! It was the nerves, honestly. Someone I know and trust helped push the papers through. Des was registered rather quickly, and then we celebrated at Friendly’s. I even ate some ice cream!

I’ve been having a little trouble catching my breath since, but it’s all good. Life sometimes runs away with it.

I thought I was nervous registering my firstborn for kindergarten, but it turns out, I got as nervous with my second! Here's how he's rocking life in style.

What else can I say? This is where I discovered my PTSD with Scarlet, and it was NOT run-of-the-mill kindergarten anxiety. This was something completely different. It’s easier now, because I’ve done the work. I’m partly there and I don’t know if there’s a way to ever be fully there, but we do what we can, don’t we? It’s harder now, because he’s my second, and I was the second and sometimes I see myself in him so much, it’s like a slap to the face. And maybe that’s ok. I wish I remembered this verbatim but it was sweet and fumbling, rather than smooth-talking. I had made him lunch and I was washing the dishes and he had to stumble and fumble for words. The gist of it is that he said, “I love you so much.” I said, “I love YOU so much.”

Then he said, “I love you.. just.. I love you just in the way that you are.”

I thought I was nervous registering my firstborn for kindergarten, but it turns out, I got as nervous with my second! Here's how he's rocking life in style.

That’s when I died a little. Or a lot. Or maybe I came rushing back to life, with air filling my lungs. Again.

Today is “Pajamas Day” OR “Dress Like Your Favorite Book Character Day” at school. Scarlet found a way to do both, because her favorite book character (Scarlett the Garnet Fairy) wears a red gown and wings, and Scarlet has a gorgeous red nightgown. She paired it with wings, slippers, and a ruby necklace. She had this laid out THREE DAYS ago because she was so excited. It was the full outfit, and also a stuffie and a book. The morning was hectic with Des going to the dentist, and me trying to tally up her read-a-thon minutes and write a check to the school. Des and Cassidy left, and we got ready to go.

She had her stuffie and book waiting on the staircase to leave. We left in a puff of crazy and she didn’t realize until we were at school that they didn’t make it with us. She begged me to go home and get them. She said she’d do anything. I instilled tough love and said it wasn’t my responsibility. She begged and pleaded. I wouldn’t budge. Her friends were on the playground and she begged and pleaded with me to go see them with her. I thought she should do that on her own too. Tough love again. Finally she went, small and alone, and found them. I went home to find the stuffie and book lovingly placed on the stairs. I lost it. I burst into tears. I couldn’t catch my breath. I got back in the car and brought them to school.

I was shaking and the secretary let me in, and gave me the green light to the classroom. I ran. One of her second grade friends saw me in the hallway and waved broadly. I went in and the teacher nodded at me to proceed. One of her friends said, “Scarlet, your mom is here!” The LOOK ON HER FACE WHEN SHE TURNED AND SAW ME. It was love and relief and excitement and more love and thanks. She melted into my arms. I said, “These are for you,” and handed her the stuffie and the book. She thanked me a million times. We hugged again. I ducked out, but not before looking back twice to see her again.

Her cheeks were SO pink with happiness. I will never forget it. I bet she won’t either.

Tough love? Meh. Maybe another day. I got home and I saw that stuffie and that book, as if they were waiting for me. In one gut instinct move, I seized them in my arms and didn’t rest until they were safely nestled in HER arms. For her day.

There’s a lot of time for lessons, and maybe not enough time for LOVE. So that’s what I choose.