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Not-your-average-mama's mama

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

I dream of Malibu - always.
Our house on the beach.
A place where Lola can listen to the waves
as she drifts off to sleep dreaming her own
perfect dreams.

A place where the sunshine
freckles her nose and peace
will teach her that all dreams
she dreams can flourish
like a rose.

I will take her to Europe over Disneyland
Explore the world with her hand in hand
Show her that life goes beyond what we see
and respect for culture goes beyond
you and me.

Skin color, religion, the size of one's house
does not dictate whom is better or whom is worse
Respect, kindness, acceptance
That. Comes. First.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Friendship Manifesto

On the heels of an amazing, long-overdue trip with seven of my best girlfriends from grade school, I return happy, exhausted, grateful and reminded that friendship, real friendship, take work - real work.

People used to ask us how we stayed friends so long. Many always act so surprised when they see us together and learn we have been together since first grade or longer.  We have all made many amazing friends along the way and those friends are always impressed by the closeness that we still share after all these years. I never understood why it was so strange, but I am reminded on the rare occasion that we can all escape our daily lives to really hunker down with each other... It ain't always easy, but it is always worth it. 

Planning a four day trip with seven women with 13 kids between us, 5 pets, 6 husbands, all of our work commitments and a varying degree of opinions about the how's and where's is nearly impossible, in and of itself. Even though we are best friends, we are all very different - always have been. You know how you see groups of girlfriends and they all seem so alike? Yeah, we are not like that. We are more like the Breakfast Club - the princess, the jock, the stoner, the crazy one, the quiet one (maybe not
those exact titles, but you get it). 

So, tack on high expectations for fitting it all in - all the conversations that we have been missing, all the laughs, all the stories we can finally share without a kid yelling "Ma! Ma! Mommmmmm!" in the background, all of the real emotions we've been saving for this time, all the fun topped by the much-needed rest & relaxation we have all been starved of for too long. Pair this with a monsoon & some stresses we left home with and there was bound to be a few explosions. There was. 

I was reminded in those moments that friendships require fights to grow, but you have to recognize this and fight through. You have to fight fair. You have to fight honest. You have to apologize. You have to forgive. The friendship has to matter more than your own ego and pride. You have to respect each other more than your need to be right. You have to love one another more than your need to shield yourself from pain. 

It's this that reminded me that friendships that matter take just as much work as a marriage and divorce is just not an option for us. It would be impossible.  Together we have been through more than any of our own marriages - grade school, high school, college, living together, distance, boyfriends, heartbreak, traumas, deaths, love, marriages, pregnancy, life-threatening illnesses, babies, toddlers, kids, loss, gains and lots & lots of love... But also many fights. 

I get it. I see why our friendship is so special. If you don't take the time, you will miss the it. You will skip right over the reminder that you can not take each other for granted.  Everyone has to make sacrifices, not just because it's worth it, but because we have been given a gift and, most important... We are worth it.