Oh the Place you Will Go

My son was born 3 weeks premature weighing in at 4 pounds, 14 ½ ounces. I had just turned 23 when he came into the world, single, and scared and facing something I was not really ready for. My pregnancy was a tough one I got was put on bed rest in my 8 month, during an ultrasound they noticed he was dropping weight rapidly so C-Section it was. He came into this world on a Friday in January my best friend had gone to San Francisco for Christmas and told me not to have him until she came back I did not disappoint her. He was my saving grace, before him I was a wreak living on the edge of a cliff. My mother was wheelchair bound she no longer spoke, my dad was trying to keep it together with this little creature our whole existence change.

He was a curious child who had a temper blue fits abound. He didn’t like cartoons, but loved to watch PBS when they showed how things worked. While most kids where playing with cars he was looking through a microscope. Every morning he would wake up with my dad sit at the table eating grits, milk coffee reading the paper. He was a little man. He started reading at the age of 3, but it wasn’t until he was in the first grade that we noticed that he was unable to spell, having a learning disability myself I made sure that it was addressed. He was a computer geek at the age of 4 when he got his first one an old black and white one, he knew more than I did at 7 he was known to at school setting up their equipment.

My mother died 10 days after his 7th birthday and then he changed. He no longer was the cuddly boy he went into himself. He always had trouble making friends, he didn’t speak to them about cartoons, Pok√©mon, or things other children loved. I started to notice that he never looked at anyone in the eyes when he spoke, change blew his mind. He was good in school, but not able to organize himself.

When he started 6th grade he took up an instrument which helped him with math and by the time he entered 8th grade he was on task. He had great co-teachers his teacher loved him, but again he had no social skills. This was something I worried about, but kept saying once he gets to High School it will change. In High School he took Drama with that he started to make friends that he only hangs out with at school. Last year I was watching America’s Next Top Model and they had a model with Asperser’s she started to explain it a light went off. I started to research it only to see what the signs more clearly. After testing we found that he had a mild form of Aspersers though he has learned to compensate for this in the last 3 years it was a relief to him to know that he wasn’t weird. I struggled with dyslexia as a kid before they had help in the schools for this, I to this day do not get math you can show me a formula go over it and 2 second later it is gone. My son has a wicked since of humor, has always know who he was, and is open minded. I have never had expectations of what he would be, I always said if I raised him to be a compassionate, open minded man than I had done my job. This January he turned 18 and the places he will go are opening up...he will start junior college this fall to get his core classes out of the way he will be double majoring in Computer Science and Political Science. He is the brightness of my life. Oh the place you will go my son.

The Misfits

I joined Facebook about a year ago because of my niece, she invited so I went. I tried to look up old friends from school, but got sidetracked by life. The beginning of this week I got a message asking me to add a friend and the sky opened up with friends some I haven’t seen in close to 30 years.

The picture above is my 6th grade picture it reflects one of the best times in my life. Most of the people in that picture I was in class with from Kindergarten until High School. We knew each other parents, fought over boys, who had the best hair, a gang of misfits. This was my magical time I was the nerdy frizzy hair girl with my Battlestar Galatia glasses, I am the second to the last on the second row right. That picture was a lot better than my 4th grade when my mom decided it would be great to give me a perm. I looked like a French poodle. When I entered 6th grade we started with a teacher who had been a 2nd grade teacher for over 30 years, she would begin our class with the following saying:

1, 2 sit up straight please do
3, 4 feet flat on the floor
5, 6 pick up your sticks
7, 8 paper straight
9, 10 lets begin

Thanks to my friend Shawn who remember it all. Our class was made up of the misfits are so the principal thought and would not let us forget. Our teacher decided that teaching 6th grade was too much for her so we got a new teacher. Ms. Collins started and ended with our class it was her first and last time to teach, because of us. We where a spirited class of high strung, class clowns, who questioned authority daily. I truly believe she loved us, but like a family drove her crazy. She was the best teacher I had and one who taught me to stand up for myself. This was the grade that I got sent to the office for the first time for telling Shawn (who was one of my best friends) that he needed a sex change. We got off with a warning by my crying and explaining I did not know what that meant, I heard about it by watching a Woody Allen movie. It was the start of “Mud Bowl” when we all ended up with mud from head to toe, we did mud wrestling before it was cool. We came back to class to hear how much of a disappointment we where from the principal. Once that picture was up on Facebook everyone had a laugh as we walked down memory lane. I think she would be proud of the people we became that the misfits are no longer missing.

Valentine Love

This is the finished Valentine Kitty for my brother and his partner. It was the first sock toy I have ever made and though he looks a little messy he was a learning experience. The flower on his collar was one of my mother's favorite ear rings, she always wore them with her polyester red pants and bright yellow polyester shirt. One thing I didn't inherit from her loving a bright wardrobe.

In the top photo he is wearing a little note it is as follows:

I am a lucky cat
Handmade for you both
I am stuffed with love
Stitched with care
And my collar is a little of mom
My ring is for my bottom
Because the bitch forgot my legs
So Happy Valentine's Day
May your luck be like love endless

Happy Valentine's Day.

Mother's Hands

I have my mother’s hands; at least that is what my sister says. The short stubby fingers, square fingernails, the translucent skin, I have her hands. My mother framed pictures out of our house during my childhood, this way she could make extra money while staying home with me. I remember the room with a built up table, mat cutter, dry mount machine, and art work from different artist. I lived for the trips in the station wagon which my friends and I called the Batmobile when we went to the local wholesale frame store. I wish I could remember the name of that place I would spend hours with my mom going through the mat board, frames and art, my young mind expanding listening to the sales woman telling me about Matisse, Renoir, Van Gough, and Dali, seeing the beauty in each line drawn with passion, pain and faith shaping me. My mom created beauty in the time she spent choosing the right color mat, building the frame and cutting the glass, those same hands that touched my face to wipe my tears where the ones that touched others. My mother’s hands held love, but at times that held my butt as it was being spanked. She said to me once that to really see a person you had to look into their eyes, because that was the passage way to the soul. I believe to understand someone journey look at their hands the gentle lines, calluses, bitten nails, wrinkles; it is a map of the all that it has touched. My mom’s hands had a soft feel on the top, but underneath it was rough from all the work she did, her hands raised 5 children, loved a man for 48 years, rocked us to sleep, wiped our cuts and tears. Her hands told of a journey of her unconditional love, faith, looking for beauty in the most unusual places. I have my mom’s hand it was a gift she gave me all those hours watching her hands work.


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