Sunday, June 28, 2009

you all come out eventually... don a new shell of course.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

thumbs down for 'up'

I'm just gonna say it. Shrek ruined me for all kids' movies. I mean, to be honest, even the sequels left me wanting. For the most part, the allure of kid flicks is lost Quinn and Reilly, but every once in a while they catch the fever and we find ourselves writhing through Ratatouille.

Praise be to Jesus that my dear Mom has taken it upon herself to treat the kids to these movies. I can very seldom sit still as it is, but between admission ($40 just for my ticket), and a bottle of water ($10.50), and some candy for the kids ($30), plus having to silence my cell phone, yeah, I am not a happy camper. Obviously I fake it for my kids, but my mom really enjoys it with them, so it just works out much better.

Yesterday wasn't a great day. I hadn't finished all my cleaning, I was unshowered (at 3:30pm), with an assortment of things on my mind, and Mom calls and says she's coming to pick us up in 15 minutes to see Up. I'd seen some buzz on facebook so I thought, eh, okay. Quinn and I tag-teamed through the shower, dressed, and both moped to the car with mostly wet hair, but happy-ish nonetheless. Mom shone in her grandmotherly glory, with the added coup of successfully dragging her curmudgeonly daughter to some kid movie.

We arrived with 1 liter bottles of pop poking out of everywhere, and then Mom insisted on getting a bin of popcorn for SEVEN FUCKING DOLLARS! Seven dollars! We walked the length of the grapevine highway to our theater and took our seats. Every preview lasted so long I thought it was the movie, and I felt my facade start to slip. A recent discussion at Pamela's house got me to thinking about all the bodily functions and debris that have touched these chairs, and I had to go to my happy place.

The movie: Okay, I will grant that Pixar has knocked a few out of the park. Toy Story for instance. However, I've noticed of late that so much attention is put into every bit of stubble that it is overlooked that the main character looks like quasimoto built out of Legos. His head was the size of Rhode Island, and his comedic foil was a young boy who looked like he had serious thyroid and/or glandular issues. Now, I am easily won over by ten million rainbow coloured balloons but my brain just can't process the juxtaposition of the incredible details, against the fact that no human on earth is shaped like either one of the main characters.

Also, someone dies. What?

So this odd duo embark upon the most implausible journey ever concocted, fighting a torturous battle against foe that could only have been inspired by mind altering drugs, and it ends the way you think it will, about 45 minutes after you hope it will. Thankfully, Jennifer's car stereo got ripped off (sorry Jennifer xoxo), so I didn't fall asleep.

Anyway, I'm a tough customer, what with the cost, the diseases, the misshapen heads. But my kids enjoyed it. I could tell Quinn was semi-indifferent, and we went home and watched US Marshals, but Reilly genuinely liked it, mostly because of the animals.

Just as she is a top-notch grandma, my mom knows just how to put the spring in my step: The Old Navy antidote. We had a blast. They were having a massive sale so we got ridiculous. And, after I spent a half an hour contemplating (read: wearing) a heinous faded denim jacket, the Indigo Girls called to say I had gone overboard, hands off their look, and to exit the store immediately.

So I figured, if I could give serious enough consideration to this disgusting, too-short, 80's relic that just about brought Michael Jackson back to life, I could forgive Pixar for the shapes of the heads in their movie.

It was a good day.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

You worked so hard to take it.

You worked so hard to break it.

It is the truest emblem of what was.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

found: marbles

Upon removing the refrigerator and the stove yesterday, I amassed this many marbles. I simply had no idea I'd lost that many. That's gotta be...four years worth or so, dang.

Sure explains a lot. If you're not feeling quite right, check under the stove.

I'm glad to have them back.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

weighing in:

To whomever I loaned my food scale, I need it back. It looks like this:

(If you have anything lying around you'd like to throw in to hurt my feelings, go ahead, you just might pay more in shipping.)

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

if you love someone set them free...

...if you were just pretending, then talk a bunch of shit about them until they run away.

Monday, June 15, 2009


Some things I was really glad to see upon returning home after what feels like weeks:

(The first fruits of Todd's extraordinary gardening labours.)

Gotta smile at a package from Old Navy, even if they spell your name like a sitz bath.

(Reilly made sundaes for everyone.)

Plus my kids are getting along and I had a wonderful chat with Carmela. It's good to be home tonight.

Monday, June 8, 2009

it took a village

These are memories from Persephone's memorial service that resonated with me, in no particular order:

-Spending a private moment with Persephone beforehand. So painful, but I'm so glad I did it.

-Pamela admitting she was struggling, before the service, at which point I drove straight over and found her trembling in the shower. I just knew that if this woman wasn't going to try to be invincible, then I certainly didn't have to either. Holding it all in wasn't the point.

-Andrew crying very loudly in an embrace with a man I didn't recognize. It felt so natural to focus on Carmela, I was glad that everyone heard and absorbed his grief too.

-Misia's indescribable beauty.

-Always having a hand or two on me, not always knowing whose, and always having my hand on someone else.

-The freedom (I don't typically feel) to hug and be hugged. With no self-consciousness.

-The sight of Jacob, whose calm made the preparation possible for me. He was efficient and brilliant about the ambiance, naturally, and he knew just when to acknowledge the solemnity, just when to make me laugh, and how, and I never would have seen that beautiful baby had he not bravely gone first. I keep reading about what wonderful women we have in this group, and it's true, but I'm not sure I could have soldiered on yesterday had it not been for Jacob.

-Emma's eagerness to help clean the night before. xoxo

-Seeing people streaming into the yard, as I passed out Persephone's announcements. Face after face, each fortifying the group, and each giving me strength.

-Darbie mostly missing the service so she could watch the kids inside. Having been one of the three of us who went later to help Pam the day of the baby's delivery, and not being at the service so everyone else could, was an extraordinary sacrifice, and another example of the caliber of women we're talking about.

-Though Sam could not attend, she contributed food and supplies for the service, and she texted just before it began to say that the UU lit a candle in Persephone's name at their child dedication ceremony that morning. The night before, as I scrubbed down the stairs in preparation, and was almost too overcome with grief to go on, sopping wet, sobbing into my bowl of Murphy's Oil, Sam texted me the words of strength only Sam can, and literally kept me going, one step at a time. And those stairs shone! Thank you Sam, for all your help before, during, and after.

-Seeing Emily hug Carmela.

-Seeing Pamela hug Emily.

-Hugging Emily.

-That tiny casket. Somehow, the smaller the casket, the greater the loss.

-Carmela looking at her baby's casket, a sight I never want to see again.

-So many people holding hands.

-Getting to meet Karinda.

-Pamela composing herself long enough to stand right beside Carmela, after several people had spoken about loss and grief, and tell us all how incredibly hard Carmela worked to get her baby out. Pam said "We were screaming at her, screaming, and she just gave and gave, and gave even more than we asked, even when we asked for more than was possible." (Slight paraphrasing, but that's the gist.) Pamela's pride in Carmela was evident even through a lot of tears.

-In case anyone wondered, there were exactly 50 people in attendance.

-Megan courageously reading a pretty long piece about how she came to know Carmela, and then something Carmela recently posted about the significance of the names Artemisia and Persephone. Megan's voice was trembly but brave, and though she couldn't see her, Carmela was nodding while she spoke, clearly grateful to have that history included in the service. At one point I stood behind Megan and put my hands on her shoulders, encouraging her to keep reading, and later she told me she though I was Shawn, which was really embarrassing because when Carmela started to nod, I kissed Megan's head because I loved her so much for thinking of doing that for Carmela. Just tell me that's as far as it went okay Megan? Sorry Shawn!

-Susannah always having a hand on my shoulder, always by my side. Her support enabled me to not only endure the heft of this difficult day, but to hold others up as well and I am indebted to her. Now, let us channel this unity and strength to Keagan during his procedure tomorrow (Tuesday).

-Seeing Pam and Gabrielle fall into a natural embrace, crying so so hard, thinking only of that baby.

-Personally I appreciated that everyone and their pet enchilada tried Xanax for the first time yesterday. No shame, no hesitation, that's simply what it took.

-Making Carmela laugh pretty hard long after the service when I had herded the usual suspects into a corner and she joined us. Seeing her laugh restored a little bit of order to the world.

-The tomatoes Jacob brought.

-I am the world's ugliest crier, and I only felt 55% insecure about it. That says a lot about these people and how comfortable they make me feel.

-Laughing with the ladies in the living room, as well as Rustin, Andrew (who is decidedly not a lady), and Shawn, who was behind me the whole time, unbeknownst to me. A strange pattern emerging here with the Dunns. Even though they were all making fun of me, including Karen, and especially (drumroll...) Pamela! Well actually, Andrew, it was worth it to see Emily laugh so hard.

-Right before the service, as we were pinning on rose buds and silencing cell phones, everyone very naturally removed errant hairs off each others' dresses, asked to borrow some lipstick, passed around tissue. The focus was on the family, but this group wasted no time taking care of each other.

-Appreciating how beautiful Steve is, sitting on his dad's lap, knowing he is at least 15 years more mature than he.

-FINALLY sitting on the couch. Nothing ever felt so good. (Not even kissing Megan's head Shawn I promise!)

-The seamlessness with which this painful, necessary service flowed. Really.

-Seeing people work swiftly, knowing just what to do, in so many ways.

-Carmela getting a foot massage from a friend outside.

-Seeing Ivy laugh her little heart out at her silly, grateful, mama.

-Jennifer's rolls!

-A few hugs I surprisingly gave or received and how much they meant to me.

-The way the laughter quieted when the funeral director came to pick up Persephone. I never took my eyes off Ivy, but never took my heart off Carmela and Andrew.

-Discovering, at such an unlikely moment, and with a bright red face, that even women in their 30's who can pull off an event like this, holding each other up, and looking so sharp, think poop is that funny.

-The unbelievable outpouring and organization that took place to honour Persephone in such a meaningful way, and the astounding realization that it was all put together in two days. She touched us all, and her memorial also brought about some healing within the group, and I think that's a pretty powerful legacy for such a tiny girl. Her grandpa must have been right, she comes from a long line of powerful women. Sleep now, Baby Persephone. While I would rather have held you in my arms, I will always be holding you in my heart.

Friday, June 5, 2009

in loving memory: baby persephone

So wanted, so anticipated, your mama worked so hard to bring you here. You are lost to all of us. We are going to take the best care of your mama, papa, and big sister Misia as possible, and your imprint on our hearts will not be forgotten.

Rest sweet sweet baby, you are loved and missed.