Thursday, February 10, 2011

I Hate February

I hate the winter. I hate the cold. I hate driving in precipitation. So I'm writing this post to let everyone know that the end of the bad weather season is near. There are just 18 days left in February. And the next 5-8 are all going to be above freezing, so hang in there! 

If I close my eyes, I can see the daffodils and the tulips already popping up through the snow. I can hear the birds chirping and I can feel the sun on my face and arms.

Yes it may snow in March, but March snow is wimpy snow. It melts within a couple of days. It can't hold its own. Baseball pitchers and catchers have already reported for training. That's a good start! Spring training will begin soon. Mmmm, I love that fresh smell of glove leather in the springtime.

I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. It's lush and green, smells like flowers, is bright as the sun and sounds like a wooden bat hitting a leather baseball. Crack!!! C'mon spring!

The worst is over. Better days are coming!

Please check out my novel, In Fashion's Web on Amazon.

Thanks for Everything, Mom

I know it sounds silly, but I never thought I would see the day when my mother wouldn't be there to pick up the phone. I wonder, never mind the grieving process, how long does it take to simply accept the fact that she's gone? It's hard.

My mom was superwoman. She raised four children on her own. She worked two jobs most of her life. She bought a co-op, then sold that and bought a house. She did all the lawn mowing, the gardening, the gutter cleaning, the painting - inside and out. She hung light fixtures, replaced wall sockets. She was a clean freak. She would hang out of a second story window so she could wash it with ammonia. You couldn't pay me to hang out of a second story window!

I remember she taught me how to say the Hail Mary prayer while she was scrubbing the kitchen floor. I was probably about 7. I wasn't allowed any farther than the doorway. As she worked the linoleum on her hands and knees, she recited a line and I had to repeat it.

She was more a Mr. Fix It than a Martha Stewart or a Betty Crocker -- more Home Depot than Bed, Bath and Beyond. She didn't cook much, but what she did cook, she was the best at. She made the best stew in town. Her turkey on Thanksgiving was moister than anyone's I've ever tasted. She would put ol' Harry, or what ever his name was that year, in the oven around 11 p.m. the night before and keep the oven on low, say around 250. Then she would cook him all night, getting up every half hour to baste him. I think she turned the temp up to 300 or 350 around 6 a.m. Her stuffing recipe was her mother's. It's been handed down through the family, and I make it now.

I specifically remember the day she taught me to ride a bike without training wheels. I was 5. At one point, I asked her, are you holding on? And she said yes. But she wasn't. I turned around and discovered that, for at least the last 30 seconds or so, I had been doing it all by myself.

I was a sick child and she spent a lot of time (and money) running me to doctors and going back and forth to the hospital to visit me. I got a lot of extra attention in those younger years as I worked through my asthma attacks and she never complained.

We didn't get along too well in my teens and twenties (who does?), but in our later years, we became great friends, and spent a lot of time together. When she retired to Arizona, I left my husband behind and spent a week on two different occasions with her, just the two of us. "That's my mom," I told my husband. I have to see her.

As I try to work through each day, the pain is great and the void is large. But I have no regrets, save one: that I can't pick up the phone and call her today. She had a good life and so did I thanks to her hard work and unending love. I love you mom ... till we meet again.

Please check out my novel, In Fashion's Web on Amazon.