The Best Laid Plans…A Mother’s Day Reflection

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On this Mother’s Day, at least for a moment, I think about all the unrealistic things I once planned to do (and be) as a mother:

I’ll never have them watch TV until they are 5.

I’ll never lose my patience.

I will teach them to make their bed and keep their room clean.

They will never snap back at me.

All the things that I hoped would make them ‘good,’ ‘normal’ children.

My mother was (and is) a bedrock of patience and humility — the most inspiring mom a girl could have. So I will be too — right?

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My Pearls

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This week, school back in full swing, homework, meetings, forms due, schedules not-so-slowly filling up, our daughters were, understandably, overstimulated and tired.  And I probably was too, not having made most of my writing deadlines.

One afternoon, the girls were in a doozy of a mood — and after a string of very disobedient moments of theirs, I tried to give them a bit of advice, a lesson, after what had just happened.

But as we drove in the car, they completely ignored mommy, laughed off all instruction, gave me smart-aleck answers, if answering at all. And it was the same for quite some time after we got back home.

Sure, they were excited and tired from all the new events of a new year, but they were very aware of their actions. They were pushing my buttons, and they knew it. And they were punished, of course — electronics taken away, privileges suspended.

But on my end, the bad thing was that I lost it.

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What Writing and Parenting Teach Me about God

Being a parent and being a writer have combined to teach me about what I call The Care, The Fair and The Fire – three ideas that God hit me over the head with recently. These ideas have encouraged me to realign how I think of the roles I have.

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To the End of the Age…A Final Post for 2014

“And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” — Matthew 28:20b, NLT

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As Christmas and 2014 come to a close, my younger daughter Mari had a cry for the ages last night – one that seems a fitting final post for the first calendar year of my blog about writing and life.

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Surfing, Writing and Life: What My Daughter’s First Lesson Taught Me

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Yesterday, I took our oldest daughter to a friend’s birthday party – a surfing birthday party. Okay, okay, it’s a SoCal thing.

 

Helped by professional instructors, the girls got wetsuits, boards and surfing lessons, many for the first time (like for ours). The girls studied posture and technique on the sand, then spent the rest of party going out into the water with the instructors, rotating constantly after three waves each, trying to stand up on the board and ride their first wave.

 

For two hours, basically, I stood on the sand watching and taking pictures of my girl falling. Falling. Over and over. Trying to get up but falling over, and over. Wipeout. Same with many of the other girls, though it seemed (for this typically oversensitive parent) that it was happening more to my daughter.

 

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Again and again, the patient instructor took her out, even farther out, into the water, got her positioned, and they tried again. And again.

 

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After what seemed like a long time — BAM! She was able to get up, WOO HOO!

 

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But she fell off after not even a second or two.

 

And then more and more of this. Over and over. Getting up and falling, up and falling. So many near misses are on my camera, where I anticipated a great moment or shot, only to capture one of her falling either right before or right after she got her footing. I didn’t want to show my feeling to her, but I wondered: how could this possibly be fun for her?

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