Tag Archives: daughters

Twenty-three

My daughter is 23.

There I said it. That was not easy. How can this be? The curly-headed little girl that used to boss us all around is now really a grown up. Like taking the 6:45 train go to work everyday kind of grown up. Like getting back a tax refund kind of grown up (lucky girl).

I have always said that the first 5 years of parenting lasts forever and after that it flies by so fast you don’t know what hit you.

Happy birthday to the one who knows me best, keeps me in line, chills me out, shares the ups and downs and still makes me laugh every day. (well almost every day). 

For those who are saddened by the idea of their kids growing up, here is some wonderful news. It gets better every year.

Love you Petuney. May your dreams all come true, even if they are taking a little detour on the 6:45 right now.

Happy 23!

 

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My Daughter the Doctor?

Every year for as long as I can remember my dad has always sent me flowers on Valentine’s Day. No matter where I lived, or with who, he always made sure that on February 14th my doorbell would ring and a beautiful bouquet of flowers would be delivered to remind me that I would always be his little girl.

As soon as my daughter was old enough to understand, she too, was the recipient of her Zaidie’s special Valentine’s flowers. Daughter #2 – my sister-in-law, was on his list as well. And of course he would never forget my mom. Simply put, there will always be flowers for all his girls.

This year the flowers came as I was running out to a meeting. I unwrapped them, looked at the card and called dad as soon as I could to thank him. I could not help but think how special this constant is. How the little things in life are the ones that form the memories you will never forget. Even though we know they will be coming, it is always so special to receive them.

This post could have been a Time to Cry (again) Thursday if the florist with the hearing problem did not add this humorous twist.

It was not until this morning as I was making coffee that I looked more closely at the card:

To my doctor who can do everything. Luv ya, Dad.

I can’t help but wonder if his doctor got flowers addressed to me.

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21 years ago today…

… I took off my jewelry and nail polish, did not wear any make up, and marched into the hospital for a scheduled c-section.

I liked to think of it at the time as the Jewish girl’s version of natural childbirth.

You see, the strong-willed, confident, decided personality of my amazing daughter were the very traits that kept that little breech baby from turning around in utero. Even after an external version, which in my opinion is not a valid medical practice. They tried to turn her at around 8 months and on the sonogram I am pretty sure I saw her move half way around,  stick out her tongue, give us the finger, then turn right back.

It is hard for me to fathom that today I am the parent of a 21-year-old. I could ramble on with all that Sunrise, Sunset, is this the little girl I carried stuff but honestly, I don’t think Dr. Jimmy could bear it. And truthfully, I am on the verge of launching her brother.

In the name of not starting to cry now through the end of June I will remain truly happy that my girl is finishing her semester abroad and celebrating her birthday in the middle of hundreds of Flamenco dress clad women during yet another festival holiday in Sevilla.

So instead of turning this into a Time to Cry Sunday, I will use this post to ask each and every one of you out there –even the non-commenting all time lurkers – to come out of the woodwork and wish my girl, my first born, Jana, a very happy birthday. Maybe this will help make up for the fact that Fed Ex did not deliver her package in time even though I paid the national debt to get it there.

Some lame excuse about a volcano.

Anyway, Janny-girl, this is what you will find when you finally get that box.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Time to Cry Tuesday – Little Shirt

When you have lived in a house as long as we have, things have a habit of lodging themselves in the back of places and you never know they are there.

Until, you have to move your massive armoire over six inches and you have to empty the entire thing out. There, on the top shelf, behind the long underwear and old sweaters that have that funky stripe of dust on them because they haven’t been unfolded in countless years, was the t-shirt above.

Size 24 month.

That belonged to the girl who will turn 21 YEARS next month.

Freaky!

How it got there I will never know. It was not a particularly favorite shirt, although it does say Delray on it and Mom, I am sure we bought it at that little place we loved on Atlantic Avenue. So although the shirt itself does not hold any particular memories of little Jana, the days we spent in Florida when she was young surely do.

I held up that little shirt and a rush of memories came flooding in. The smell of suntan lotion mixed with Desitin (she used to eat so much sand it was rough going on the way out). The way she could sit in a hole that Gary dug for her on the beach for hours. Standing at the shoreline with each of us holding one of her chubby little hands and lifting her up as the waves crashed on her feet, her squealing with delight each time as if it were the first. The cry of ‘five more minutes’ when we told her it was time to get out of the water. My kids adored the beach. Nature or nurture? Both,I am sure. Salt air and sand are something ingrained in their lives and a symbol of their childhoods.

That little Jana was one handful. Loads of fun but always giving me a run for my money. She could out-stubborn me any day of the week. Those toddler years were trying as hell but damn what I would not give for just one more day of that curly-headed little whirling dervish.

And now she is halfway across the globe navigating the world as if she were riding her bike around the corner, “It’s fine mom, I’ll figure it out, don’t worry.”

Don’t worry?! Isn’t that my job?

Janny-girl, I am thinking that I just might have to save that little shirt a while longer. And no, you cannot still wear it even though I know you live tiny T’s.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under gary, Jana, moms, parenting, t-shirts, Time to Cry Tuesdays

Time to Cry Tuesday – First of the Lasts

(this post is dedicated to my girls who have parented a matched set of kids with me since pre-school. you know who you are. thanks for always being there).

We have all been here before. We have all been here before. We have all been here before. We have all been here before. (No, I am not being annoyingly repetitive for no reason, I am quoting David Crosby)

Parental Déjà Vu.

Today marked the unofficial beginning of Danny’s senior year; varsity soccer practice 2-a-days. In seventeen-year-old-ese that means constant running from 8-11:30 and then again from 5-7:30.

Not wanting to be over-dramatic about this, but today, as I wondered through Staples after dropping him at practice, gathering office supplies, bombarded by obscene amounts of back-to-school signage, I realized that this was it.

IT.

Today is the first of the lasts. Last sports season as a parental spectator, last back-to-school season, last school year of having a kid home, last 10 months of an offspring in residence.

Right about now is when I would be sticking my fingers in both ears, babbling to drown out what I have to say next.

I remember all this with my first child. That combination of excitement and fear of losing the life we have known for the past 20 years.

Parental Déjà Vu.

Let the games begin and let me remember to savor ever one of these lasts.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Time to Cry Tuesday – This is not a dress rehearsal…

I have decided to make this an annual post at graduation time, until next year when I will have another graduate to write about. I wrote this before I was a blogger. It was an email I sent to those who had been parenting with me since preschool. It was written on the morning of my daughter’s HS graduation. Funny how I have become the mom in the last paragraph. Perfect timing as she is leaving tomorrow for the summer after just a few short weeks at home.

This one is for all my girls (and guys) who are launching their girls (and a guy) this year: to Jo (& Mo), Karen (& Todd), Joyce (& David), Maddee (& Alan), Susan (& Neil), Michelle (& Daryl), Lisa (& Rob), and Nancy (& Uncle Neal). Grab your tissues and your hats, this one is not for the faint of heart!

This is not a dress rehearsal…

or watch the temp when you decide to iron the graduation gown. 

6AM on the day that my first child graduates high school. 

how can this be, she was just a curly-headed little whirling dervish whose door i had to hold shut as she was throwing her ever famous brand of temper tantrums. that same door with the loose latch from all the times she slammed it for effect when she stormed into her room in her tweens. you know the one, who at five years old marched into nuerosurgery to ‘get her neck fixed’ and never once asked ‘why me?’. 

who was that radiant young woman that walked out of the house wednesday morning with her car packed and her keys in hand saying, “don’t worry mom, i have the garmin GPS, i don’t need a map!” 

well i think, perhaps, i need a map today. someone tell me how to navigate this road. we surely have had enough practice. we graduate them ad nauseum – from the 4’s, kindergarten, 5th grade, 8th grade – the most graduated generation of all times. you would think we would get used to it. but this year’s cap does not have flourescent orange and green finger paint decorating it. this kid has actually grown up! how dare she. does she not know that my bravado this year has all been an act. of course i could not be ready for her to be the competant, independent, grab-the-world-by-the-balls person i worked so hard to raise. does she not know i was only kidding!! wisconsin?!! that is halfway across the country! 

i digress – back to the gown and the iron. being a working mom i always look for ways to overcompensate and make sure that i am doing the mom thing as well as the work thing. so, of course, they both are never really quite up to the standard i expect. somewhere in the 4-page green directions for graduation (you know the one, where the assistant principal gives them a 10 bullet list for how to enjoy graduation and prom, 9 of which stress not drinking or doing drugs) there was mention of taking the gown out of the bag and ironing it. at midnight i was the mom who would just hang it up. at 6AM i decided no daughter of mine will graduate with a wrinkled gown! 

so why is it, exactly, that they make these things out of the same material as basketball shimmer shorts?! 

no, you will not be able to notice my daughter by the big brown iron mark on the back of her white gown. but if you look close, you may notice that on the front left shoulder the fabric is, how should i put it, a tad ‘melted’. 

as jana would say, ‘it’s FINE’. as my parents would say, i did it ‘the Amy way’. 

a huge thank you to the jana who has become one of my favorite people on earth to spend time with. surely the one that knows me the best, and loves me anyway. sometimes it seems that she is raising me. i think her humor and radiant smile will get me through this one. levity has always been her strong point. 

love and congrats to all of you who have been in the parenting trenches with me the past 18 years. for some of you it is your first, others, your last. it is never easy to watch them go. but then again, we could all use a rest. and as my mommy mentors tell me, they come home, stay out all night, sleep late and bring lots of laundry.  

let the games begin!

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone

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Filed under communities, education, family, friendship, Jana, moms

Sons are from Mars, Daughters are from Venus: A Mother’s Day Story

mothers-day

Today I received the most beautiful early Mother’s Day card from Jana. The second year of college has brought with it an ease in remembering the little things that make a big difference. She has made sure birthday gifts and cards arrive in time without being reminded. She handles her own ‘stuff’ with ease and little complaint. And this mother’s day the gift of her sending cards to not only me, but both her grandmothers, is the best one I could receive.

I texted her to thank her and tell her that she made me cry. She said she knew she would and then told me she had a funny story. Here it is:

Her friend went to buy a Mother’s day card and a girl who was in the store told her all the good ones were gone. The two of them decided to work as a team, going through every card in the store to try and find one that did not suck. While they were diligently reading every last card on the rack, a boy walked in, picked up the first card he saw, didn’t read it and walked out.

And that is the difference between boys and girls.

Hey, you have to give him credit for actually buying the card.

On this Mother’s Day I would like to wish all the moms in my life a wonderful day filled with family, love, and nothing that you do not want to do. 

To my mom and my mother in law, I wish you the happiest day of all. I hope you both know how grateful we are to have reached this age and still have all four of our childrens’ grandparents. We are truly blessed.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog.

For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under family, grandmothers, holidays, humor, Jana, men and women, moms, parenting, teenagers, women