Sunday, April 12, 2009

To Remember

The last few weeks have brought back some poignant memories. Flowers and tree trunks painted white. Amaryllis and paper whites growing in lush parks...spring green held in by meandering cement walkways. Piatas full of spring berries and flowers...and then the tears come. Involuntarily. Regardless, they come. Tears for things and people that I miss...tears for things and people I love...tears for a time...a beautiful, harsh, glorious time...I can remember the sound of my shoes on the streets. I can remember dogs and cars and gypsies...the smell of bread...the smell of dirt and sweat. Companions. Neighbors. Investigators. Members. How they laughed when things were new. How they cried for things that had happened to them...the Opera plaza full of cards and trinkets for zuia fameilor...How I found my son's name one early morning during individual study in my little bed in Timisoara...How I discovered so much in a place so far away...and how far it seems to me right now.

There's no Easter Bunny in Romania. Eggs are dyed red or with symbols of spring in observance of new life. The daily greetings change from the regular "good day" to "Christ was Resurrected." And the one receiving the greeting replies with, "True, He Lives Again." Their Easter celebration is about light. Climbing up to a high tower in Timisoara, the view from the window brought an almost endless sea in the Opera plaza of the town citizens all with illuminated candles. The light of Christ they symbolically carried. Beautiful.

I am grateful for a time every year to consider what this light means to me. To hold a love for traditions I grew up with as a child, but to include these newly acquired perspectives to my observances makes it deeper for me now. I can make my own efforts daily to nourish my light and encourage it in others, regardless of their own beliefs. Light is light. We each have it...and it's difficult for any man, with all of the things we go through, to keep it burning brightly.

I come away with two things and gratitude. That will do it. Small steps. These two elements make all the difference to me...and serve as a powerful motivator in considering how I want to develop in every aspect. But to succeed, both elements must be shared to I offer what I love to gratitude for all you've been and done for me.

Hristos a inviat.
Adevarat, a inviat.

Happy Easter, friends.


Wednesday, April 1, 2009


I've realized that my limitations and humanity are scary clear when I'm hungry or tired. I'm amongst friends, so I can openly write about my many elephants in the middle of the room. I can be patient and fairly storybook mom-ish from time to time. I know what to say and do when things happen. I understand the nuances of my kids' personalities, their various strengths and weaknesses, how to deflect them, nourish them, encourage and challenge them...BUT (ooh, that's big) you get me on a day when I'm tired...or hungry...and I'm a brat. All former "progressive parenting" styles are OUT THE WINDOW. It's survival of the fittest. 3 of them and 1 of me and I have to be last man standing - no other options.

This thing called sleep is one of my greatest allies...but I'm so longing for it most of the time. Seriously, I'm like...NAP ADDICTED. I had to get my fix in today because I was TOTALLY falling asleep at my desk. Not good when the CFO's panoramic view includes a bird's eye view directly at me. Oh, hi, powerful upper-management man! Thought I'd catch a few zzz's this afternoon. You don't mind, right? Ooh...a pink slip? It was either fry my computer with my forehead to the keys, or steal 12 minutes in the car. Car won. I hit the snooze twice. Good as new. Now it's 9 and I'm a pumpkin. Sleep. So much to do, but I love my cozy, warm sleeping haven. Love it.

Shortage of zzz's equal a relative increase in grrrr's. Inevitable. Even at work. I'm much more sarcastic and punchy. Oh, it's possible, really, I do it every day and the more I do it, the better and more effective I become at being bratty. No, I don't plan on changing it. I plan on going right on with my bratty self. Complaining and moaning...well, not exactly. I'll go on with my snooze button and my whole-hearted snoring when the occasion calls for it.

The point is this: listen to yourself. Bratty = probably not the best you that could be. We won't argue that, BUT (Oooh, big!!) we never feel GREAT after bratty session. Listen. Forgive. Give yourself what you need. Breathe deeply. Start over again. Everything becomes better with practice, but practice the good, worthwhile things...I shouldn't be so proud of my bratty sarcasm...but right now I'm tired, so deal with it.

Love, love, grouchy love,