Written for “Sweetly Surprised”
A lot of the time, I forget the importance of grabbing someone’s attention with the first line that I write. I mean, hey there McFly … I sort of completely blew it with writing that as the first sentence. What a bore I am.
To make up for my mistake, I shall try and spice things up a little bit by sharing a lovely little memory that was created, a few weeks ago. It was with my mom, a gorgeous woman who is so much fun to be with.
The nutshell: In order to try and finish a major job application by 12pm est (didn’t happen), I stayed inside my mom’s hotel room, while she went to a delicious Mexican restaurant (my favorite). Since she’s so sweet, she brought me back an entire meal that was so delicious. Since she’s so much fun, we walked to a restaurant to get a drink, while I would eat the meal. We found a place, and right off the bat, they were a bit rude to us…
My mom drank a glass of wine, and I had an IPA (as usual). As the waitress was headed to grab the bill, she yelled to my mom, “Are you sure you don’t want any _______ underwear for the girl?” My mom smiled and said, “Yeah,” casually, as if she’s been asked this question by a waitress before! I started laughing so hard, and I commented on my mom’s nonchalant response. Well -it turns out that my mom didn’t exactly hear the question…
… Although I love pink, we did not purchase a pair of “I love dick” underwear, but we both started laughing. Thereafter, the waitress brought the check… My mom liked this waitress; for whatever reason, she said that twice. And, I did, too; she was a perfect fit for the restaurant we were at.
My mama didn’t warn me about this place, the restaurant where everyone acts like a dick to you. Instead, my mom led me inside, proceeded to buy us drinks & make me smile the whole time. She is the most amazing person to me. I consider her heart to be a heart of gold; she is the most caring, sweet, loving person that I’ve ever known in my entire life. And, this isn’t just because she’s my mom. It’s because it’s the truth. And, I’m so damn lucky to have her as my mom.
‘Damn’ is the first “cuss word” that my mom started to use, on a rare occasion. It was so very unexpected; each time, my brother and I would laugh just a tiny, little bit. And, my mom would smile because she knew why we were giggling. This was the mom who considered the word ‘crap’ as a cuss word. This was the girl who wasn’t very strict, yet she banned the show, The Simpson’s, because it was “ugly.” To her, ‘ugly’ meant ‘rude.’ This was the southern belle who grew up with a mother, who said “pg” instead of the word ‘pregnant.’
… My mom has come a long way, and so have I. The fact that we can laugh together at the end of the night, about our dinner receipt, means so much to me. We are truly a couple of “good girls,” but we’re also out to have a good time & live life well.
On top of being fun, my mom is funny, without trying to be. She makes me laugh, especially when I’m with her. She’s just so damn cute. She’ll say the funniest thing, and she won’t realize it until I start laughing. This happened the whole weekend, and it was a breath of fresh air. Truly.
It’s so wonderful to be around a positive person, who’s simply happy to be alive. My mom has always been all about “being positive.” Sometimes, I’d get a little frustrated when she’d tell me to “just be positive.” I’d tell her that I was simply feeling the way that I felt, that it had nothing to do with “being positive.” But, every year that passes, I realize how important it is to try and look at the bright side of things. In fact, I’ve gotten really good at doing that … almost too good.
The same goes for “believing.” I learned all about how important it is to “believe” from my mom. She’s the greatest believer there ever was; she wins the golden medal. And, I’m pretty sure that I’m the runner-up. Again, I think I’m probably a little too good at believing in whatever I choose to try and believe in. Once I make the choice, it’s hard to turn back and give up. Perhaps that’s not the greatest thing. Then again, I’m a believer in believing…
In elementary school, there was a day that I’ll always remember. During recess, Kristi and I argued over whether Santa Clause was real. “I”ll tell you how I KNOW he’s real,” I said. I’m sure she probably laughed. “He’s real because I asked him for the same exact hair dryer that my cousin in Texas has. I didn’t tell anyone else! And, I got that exact hair dryer from Santa! He’s real, Kristi!” I was not about to give up on my faith in Santa. Of course, Kristi had already found out the truth at home from her mom
The same goes for the “F” word, although I didn’t argue about it. I had no clue what it meant, but Kristi had found out at home. So, during recess, a time at which Kristi and I always looked for four-leaf clovers while the other kids did normal things, I asked her what the word meant. “Please tell me,” I said. “Please!” What was my best friend’s response, the best friend who’s supposed to tell me all her secrets? “I can’t tell you. You need to go home and ask your mom.” What? What… Yeah right. I was not about to go home to my mom, my wonderfully sweet and angelic mother, and ask her what f**k means. Nope.
Instead, I had a “better idea.” How about I go home, and while my mom is ironing clothes, I’ll start talking to her. Then, when she says any word, at any point, I’ll accuse her of saying the “F” word. Surely, that will lead to a pleasant discussion that pertains to the word ‘fu*k.’
Of course, this was not an idea that I had; it was something that happened. It was merely my way of trying to find an answer to a question (in a passive aggressive way). And, it definitely did not turn out well.
After I crazily chose to accuse my sweet, little mom of saying the “F” word, when she probably didn’t even say a word that began with the letter ‘F,’ I was sent to my room for one of the few times that she ever sent me to my room. Boy did I cry, and how could I not? I felt terrible. My mom didn’t deserve that, and I knew it. Better yet, my mom was my heart, and I carried her around with me all day at school. If I got a piece of candy, I’d save it and bring it home to her, while the other kids would act normal and eat it. Not me… I couldn’t. My mom deserved the sweetest in life, and I wanted to give that to her.
. . . . .
It’s been a rough … six or so years. I thought of this today, and I shed a few tears. For whatever reason, I have been the girl who’s been in a few very turbulent relationships that have sort of ripped me to pieces. Why? I’m not sure, but I think it may relate to “being positive” and “believing.” I grew up with a mom who gave me unconditional love; for me, giving that to someone (who I choose to be in a relationship with) comes naturally. It’s pretty much ingrained in my heart. …Heart.
When I was little, the only thing I’d ever give my mom was something having to do with a heart. She loved hearts, and she would ask for them. In truth, years ago, she finally told me that she probably had enough hearts (i.e., it’s time to stop giving me hearts). Although she didn’t like admitting it, we both smiled.
In addition to my mom’s love for hearts, she also finds them, everywhere. One time, she found a raisin bagel that was shaped in a heart. In some shape or form, she encouraged me to save that bagel. So, it sat on top, and in the middle, of my desk at home … for forever. And, it was only yesterday that I was eating some chips, instantly spotting a particular chip, and placing it aside without consideration. Today, I noticed it and smiled, as I realized that I didn’t eat it.
Come to think of it, I also found a leaf on the ground, during the last 6 months, and it’s been sitting above my sink, ever since. To some people, this all may sound funny or even strange. For me, it’s simple and a part of life. See a heart, pick it up, save it. My mom taught me to love hearts. Better yet, she taught me how to have a heart. And, this all came from her heart
She, too, has experienced the difficulty in giving up and losing hope. Sometimes, when she’s encouraged me to do so, I feel upset and angry. How could she be telling me to not have hope; she’s the one who taught me how important that is! But, deep down, the truth at the heart of it is that she’s just looking out for me. I know that. But, I also know how important it is to believe that what you want is possible. And, I have a pillow case (that my mom gave me) that reminds me of that, every single day. During difficult times, I’ve felt frustrated, wishing to through the damn pillow out the window. But, not really. I love that pillow case.
Believe: “It’s with your heart that you believe.” Ro 10:10
When I really am awake in life, truly in consideration of what really matters, I think of what a fool I am. Why am I not living in Portland? How can I make the choice to live in Los Angeles when I’m only able to see my mom, dad, brother (etc.) a few times a year (or more, if I’m lucky)?
Most of the time, it’s really easy to neglect to think of what matters because of the difficulty that lies within the truth. Sometimes, we run away because it’s easier than facing what’s in front of us. But, it’s so important to realize this, and to allow yourself to have moments where you open your eyes, even if tears are going to stream down your face. If you’re lucky, they’ll be tears of joy.
A few weeks ago, when I saw my mom, I had one of the greatest weekends that I’ve had (in a really long time). And, I actually had a moment by myself, inside my car, where I started to cry. It occurred before I saw my mom, and after I said goodbye to one of my greatest friends. He was visiting his girlfriend, and I hadn’t seen him for three years. It was so good to see him. Although we’ve always been able to have peaceful debates over a few topics, he’s actually very similar to the person I am. He’s trustworthy, and he really, truly cares about people. We get each other.
As we talked by ourselves, I asked him if he was in love. And, he smiled and said ‘yes.’ I felt so happy for him. In addition, I had recently spent time with Kristi and her boyfriend, Paul (a.k.a. “Mr. LA”). Although I’d spent time with them many times before, this time had been different. I felt so happy for them, and so happy for her. They were having so much fun with each other. Although she was a bit drunk, they were wrestling with each other on the floor, and acting crazy. They were like a couple of kids. I finally felt at ease because I saw a different side (of this relationship) that I’d never seen before. And, that’s when I knew. I knew my best friend was okay. She’s in love.
Before I left my friend, I had a moment where I said this: “I feel so happy for you. I also feel good about Kristi and Paul. It’s so great. Everything is coming together for everyone.” Then, I suddenly gave a “personal pity party, woe is me” look, indirectly saying, “for everyone except me.” But, I shrugged the thought and feeling off, and I said goodbye to my friend.
I walked through the unusual California rain, and headed to the car, knowing it was time to find a Starbucks and work on those essays for a dreamy job in New York. As I got in the car, one thing led to another, and I just started crying … tears of relief. Although I’ll refrain from saying what occurred that led me to cry (happy tears), I can simply say that I felt more than happy during that moment.
Perhaps there was no real reason to cry happy tears. That’s true. But, I believed there was. Sometimes, that’s the first step you have to take, in order to have a shot at what you want. And, I’m willing to take that risk.
Ever since that weekend, I’ve been trying to focus on what I want, rather than the lack of it. Sometimes, that’s really hard, especially if you are imagining something that seems far out of reach. But, what’s the harm in choosing to imagine exactly what you want? If it doesn’t come true, at least you’ll have had a good time dreaming. Don’t get me wrong; I also have the goal to live in the present moment. But, during the moments that I lie in bed, I close my eyes and picture … the very best.
Love what is true, and the world will come to you.
You can find it in yourself.