To my boys…

Evans, Morgan and now… Jasper,

 

  I love you.  You make me smile every single day.  Even when I want to strangle you.  But, there are a few things that I need to make clear .

 

1.  I am your mother.  I am not your friend.  You were given to me to love you, to protect you, to teach you right from wrong.  From the day that I found out you were growing in me, my job became to do everything in my power to ensure that you grow up to be strong, caring, independent thinking men.  Men that know love is love.  No matter what shape it takes in your life.  

I will piss you off, I will drive you crazy and yes, I will embarrass you many times before you are grown.  But, first and foremost, I am your mother.  You will respect me.  You will do what I ask but, know that it’s okay to question my actions if they don’t seem reasonable.

 

2.  This is a FAMILY.  We work together.  If one of us falls, another is going to be there to catch them.  When one of us is hurt, the whole of us is hurt. But, know that we all have independent ways of thinking and speaking.  We have different belief systems and that is perfectly acceptable.  But, we will respect each other’s space, opinions and ways of thinking.  We may be a solitary unit but, that doesn’t mean that we can’t be individuals.

 

3.  This is our home.  We work at making it better and livable together.  We respect each others ability to complete different tasks.  It is each of our responsibilities to keep our home clean, unbroken, and welcoming to our friends and family.  You have your right to your privacy.  BUT, know that the privilege of privacy comes at a price.  You and your actions alone determine the level of privacy that is given.

 

4.  It may not seem like it right now but, there are reasons behind every “No”.  Trust that as you mature, you will see that every no, while seemingly heartbreaking and unfair, was put in place for a reason.  Negotiation is not an option.

 

5.  Each person in this family has a job to do.  Some of your jobs is to go to school, do your very best, excel at every extracurricular activity you attempt (to the best of your ability) and to contribute something positive to this world.  Make sure that every night when you go to sleep, you somehow, left the world, even your little piece of it, a better place than when you woke that morning.  Every one has something to contribute.

 

6.  Be grateful for something everyday.  You don’t necessarily have to vocalize what you are thankful for but, think about it.

 

7.  Know that you three men-children are the reason that I know how to LOVE.   You make my heart whole. 

 

-Mom

If you don’t like “how we met” stories, you may want to bypass this whole post.  If you don’t mind a few laughs with some mush along the way…keep on reading.

I’m not one to put my soft side out there very often but, there are times when things that might not have been just rush over me and not only do I have to stop and reflect but, let the world know it.  

This moment of reflection was brought to me yesterday as I was driving home from running errands and a song came on.  I honestly can’t remember what song it was but, it brought waves of memories of the last 10 years with my husband that somehow had been pushed to the back of mind.  I decided then that, I needed to have this in my blog as a way to remember on those days that things just seem well, shitty beyond comprehension.  So.  Here I am.  There you are.  Reading this blog so, that must mean that you a) can’t wait to see me show the soft side that doesn’t come often or b) you’re just a sucker for cheesy, how we met stories.  Either way, thanks for staying with me.

When I met Watson, I can’t say that it was love at first sight.  Not that, looking back, I would have minded that at all but, in all honesty, I was dating someone else and I definitely was not on the hunt.  I’m pretty certain that he wasn’t looking either but, nonetheless, the moment was there.

Mid October, my friends and I were finishing up some things at the restaurant that we were going to be opening the next week.  And, we decided that we deserved a tasty beverage to end the night.  Being that one of them was from New Orleans and the other was not of legal age, and… being the rebel that I am, I chose the place that I knew that no one would worry about age and that the drinks would be strong and free flowing.  

(I’m skipping all the boring stuff and getting to the good stuff now…)

We found a table at this establishment right near the dance floor and their just happened to be some guys sitting in front of us at the bar that encased where tonight, the locals were partaking in ugh, karaoke.  

We start talking to these guys, or they start talking to us, I can’t remember.  There’s this really, REALLY good-looking dark haired guy that is talking to me.  He has the most adorable, single dimple on his right cheek.  My phone is blowing up with calls from Michigan.  Where my boyfriend at the time lived.

So, in true Melody-esque, smart assedness form, I begin to talk shit.  

“Are you or have you ever been in any branch of the US military?”

“Well, I’m not in the Air Force and I’m not a fucking Marine.”

“Oh, so you’re in the Army.  (insert sad face) You must be stupid.”

“Well, as a matter of fact, SWEETHEART…”  (insert all kinds of test scores and ranking, rating and bullshit… lol)

Fast forward… he was there for school for the Navy.  He was recently divorced.  We had the same Motorola phone.  As I was getting ready to leave, he’s practically begging me to stay and hear him sing George Strait’s, “The Chair”.  I had to go.  But, before I left I invited he and his friends to the soft opening of the restaurant the following week for a free meal for family and friends.  And, being that I had none within relative distance, why not offer these temporary Gulf Coastians a free meal?  We go to exchange numbers and I hear my friends whispering, “They’re exchanging numbers!!!!”  (I think that they knew more than we did at the moment)

October 26 (I think).  Gumbo Shop.  Edgewater Plaza.  I am standing at the hostess stand, in THE most uncomfortable heels EVER.  In walks this group of guys and the one guy is like, “Hi!”.  Um, “hi”?  Holy shit!  It’s the guys from the bar.  I seat them and run back to the kitchen to tell my friends who was here.  It was really quite comical.  The three of us, running to the doorway and one on top of the other, three heads peering out.  

Fast forward…  Watson and I started hanging out.  Just friends.  (I had a boyfriend, remember)  He was the complete gentleman.  Never tried anything.  We had a blast together.  A decision was made that since he was from North Carolina and I was wanting to visit my mom, that well, I would head up with him at Christmas time.  And, since he didn’t want me to be alone at Christmas, I was totally going to be with his family.  

Fast forward… my boyfriend and I broke up.  (Why doesn’t matter.  My closest friends know and were awesome!)  Watson and I grew closer and within a few weeks, inseparable.  

One night, after drinks and we went to bed, he told me that he had something to tell me.  UGH, tell me in the morning!  I was so tired.  After a few minutes, I caved and we went outside so that he could unburden himself with whatever was keeping us awake.

I can still picture the scenario.  I was sitting in the justly titled, “drunk chair” and he was at the folding, card table.  (high class, right?)  I then had this horrible thought, “You’re still married.  Aren’t you?”

The look of shock on his face was immeasurable.  “No.  NO!  My divorce was final *insert date here*”

Whew… 

As we sat there, he begins talking.  And not just with his mouth.  With his hands.  This gorgeous, self assured, amazing man was nervous.  WTF?!

He’s sitting there and the last statement that I can remember him making went something like this….

“I think well, I’m pretty sure, no… I know it.  I’m in love with you.”  Whoa.

“Thank you?”  Not the most graceful of rebuttals but, give me a break!  I was a little taken aback.

Fast forward… December 3rd- we moved in together.  Christmas- we went home to North Carolina and I met his family.  Jan-February- It was decided that I we would not only be carrying on this relationship but, I would be CALIFORNIA BOUND, BABY!

March- We made the cross country drive to Cali.  March-October- fun times were had by all.  October- Holy shit, we’re having a baby!  November- along with friends, married in Vegas.  April 19th – Evans was born.  June- pregnant again.  February 26th – Morgan was born.

Fast forward… More trials and tribulations that any one couple should have to deal with.  

Fast forward… two deployments.  March 2012 He’s coming home!  April- Here comes baby #3!!!  

Fast forward… December 17th – Jasper is born.

Fast forward… today.  October 20th.  I am still beyond in love with a man that I met purely by accident almost 10 years ago.  He still makes my knees weak when he comes in the door after work.  I still do the one foot in the air, kick when he kisses me.

We’re best friends.  We’re lovers.  We are parents.  We are what “love at first sight”, even when you weren’t looking or didn’t even know it, looks like.  We fight, we yell, we disagree on most everything but, we love and we laugh.  Sometimes over the most ridiculous of things.  We see the things that others would miss and can finish each other’s sentences.  We put our marriage first.  I ask him if he’s going to marry me on a daily basis and we say, “I love you” more than anyone wants to hear.

I love that when he’s snoring, we are so in sync that, a simple touch on his arm, in a dead sleep, will make him turn over to quiet the snoring.  I love that we lock our bedroom door in the mornings on the weekends to just be US before we have to be parents. 

He is truly the love of my life.  When I look into the future and when I am old… he is the best friend that I see there.  He’s my picture of perfection.  He always has been and always will be.

Oh, and that song that I was talking about that started this whole thing… well, I still can’t remember.  But, what ever it was,  I just got to relive the most amazing love story.  Again.

Note to self… “Self, it’s called a GAS CAN…”

So, let me recap my afternoon for everyone. (If you really don’t care, don’t worry.  I don’t care that you don’t care.  Continue reading.

I have two babies that I am taking care of today. We have to pick up Julian and Jaime at their school and then my boys at their school. Well… what happens when you think that your husband put gas in the truck last weekend but, turns out that it was the weekend BEFORE?
DING, DING, DING!!!! You run out of gasoline right in your very, own driveway!
You fill a SUBURBAN with a gallon of gas and it does NOTHING but, get you to the end of your street.
But, it’s a SUPER way to meet your very nice neighbor, Andre, who has just a bit of gas in his can. He gives it to you. You make it about 1/4 mile down the street as Andre passes by you, honks and is on his way to go fill his gas can to get your moronic ass back on the road.
Enter the nicest, female police woman that I have EVER met. Most are total biatches. She waits with me until Andre gets back with gas to make sure that the idiots don’t honk and/or hit you as you sit on the side of the road.
Enter Karen’s friend, Kelly, who was kind enough to wait with J&J until I could FINALLY get to their school to pick them up.

I am home. With SIX kids and a pounding headache.

And, did I mention that Andre did not WANT me to take his gas can and refill it? As expensive as gas is and this total stranger is telling me that it’s not necessary. Oh, yes. Yes, it is. I literally yanked the gas can and told him that I would bring it back this afternoon.

And, why is it… even though you KNOW that you had not done anything wrong, your heart pounds when a cop pulls up behind you?

I am so glad to be home and now it hits me… for the first time in my life, I had this many kids at my house and I am not going insane. I guess old age really does soften a person. Fuck, I HATE that.