Friday, August 19, 2011

Letter to Nathaniel

My son, you drive me crazy. Like when you texted me during my nap yesterday while my phone was off to tell me you were at Sophomore Orientation you said wasn't until today and would I like to go? By the time I received this text you were already at Mason's house and not interested in going back, to say, talk to a counselor about the rest of your life because "there were too many people there and I don't like people." But you reassured me I was free to go ahead and waste my time if I clearly felt the need to do something stupid and useless.
How touching.

As drivers ed came to a close this week there was clearly some signs of panic. Why is that? Oh I see. You just needed to print 25 articles off about car related accidents, cut them out, and then write a paragraph on them. Oh, and that big last exam you have tomorrow to study for. Funny because I remember you playing video games and hanging with Mason every second you haven't been in class. When exactly did you receive this assignment? Last week? You realize this is procrastinating right?
"Mom. Stress now, or stress later. Duh. Still going to be stress. Doesn't make a difference."
What are you talking about? The point of doing things early is to never have stress at all!
Plan ahead, spread out the work over several days= no stress and lifelong happiness:)
"Nobody does that mom. "
I did. And what about that high achiever Anderson boy?"
"He's crazy mom. Doesn't count. And you're weird."


Last night before prayer I tickled Nathaniel's foot. He was not pleased.
"No one loves you mom. You're going to die alone."
Let's not sugar coat it there son.
I read in between the lines: "I love you mom. You're the best. Thanks for all you do. Your cooking is the bomb. I'm going to cry when I leave home and don't worry-- I'll make danged sure you never die alone."

Good thing I have that to comfort and reassure me that what I do really makes a difference and will all be worth it in the end.

Love you too Nathaniel.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Goodbye Summer

I didn't think I'd be ready for this summer to end but I guess I've finally decided I am. You know that feeling when you realize that every time you walk back into a room you just cleaned five minutes ago and it already looks like someone picked it up, turned it upside down, and then shook it? I'm tired of that.

We tried all summer to get Nathaniel to do his Eagle Scout Project. He never even got the paperwork printed out. He was too busy with EFY . . .

and Scout Camp . . .

and laying around playing video games while thinking about how great
he is to do anything productive.

Just yesterday Sarah went on her last summer excursion with her season pass to Lagoon.

But she has fond memories of her awesome trip to Zion's National Park
with three of her friends.
We spent all our money on her back-to-school clothes
and I finally bought her polka dotted rain boots today she's been bugging me about.
Never mind that she won't need them until it starts to snow.

Rebecca had her second year of horse camp this year
and already is eagerly looking forward to next year.

She's going to have to put a hold on her routine of getting up late everyday and waking up slowly in front of the TV. (Until I force her to read her mandatory 27 pages. Weird number, I know, but that was the one I came up with when I divided up all the books I wanted her to get through into the number of days we had left.)

Then of course she spent the rest of each day playing with friends as late as she could get us to let her, because for Rebecca, friends are the most important part of life.
(With horses and Harry Potter taking a close second.)

But I can't help but worry about how John is going to do with a full day of school
as he enters first grade on Monday.

No more getting up at 10am to sit in his undies
eating Corn Pops out of the box & watching Sponge Bob.

Or telling me he hasn't been into the ice cream.

Or using up all my pipe cleaners to "play" with his toys.

Or dropping subtle hints about what movie he wants me to take him to today.

My heart is breaking.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Tracy Family 2011

Catching up on the blog here.
Never had a chance to finally post pictures of Jay's annual visit.
They came for the last week in July and we got a chance to catch up a little.

Love this picture of Jarom. He writes all the time.
Very intelligent, and also on the autism spectrum.
Jay and Mel insist he gives them a run for their money,
but I never see it. I just love him because he reminds me of Jay so much.

Don't you just want to eat him up?
It's the freckles I think.

Hiking Timpanogos Caves

I think this one might have been when we hiked Stewart Falls. We did a lot of hiking.

Peter's self-portrait

Oh the enthusiasm.

John about sums it up with this beet-red look.

Stewart Falls was cooler:)

I mock Jay a fair amount about this bonnet style hat. Doesn't seem to faze him.

You can see John's missing tooth here. He finally just lost his first one last month. I heard nothing about anything except that tooth until it finally came out.

Peter's hair looks feathered here--heh heh!
Good thing the 80's is coming back in.

Guess I'm the only one still in full Sunday dress.
By default that makes me the most righteous.

Emily is the cutest, sweetest thing. Perfect child if you ask me.
I want to keep her but Jay is selfish and says no.

Caleb likes bugs. A lot.
As in Jay a lot.
I was saving jars for him, but he kept needing more.
Not sure if that is because he was losing them or just didn't want to mix bugs.

Sariah takes after her aunt and tears through book after book.
I had to peel one away from her to take this picture.

I always cry when they leave. I drop not-so-subtle hints to them all the time about moving closer. They always say they'll go "where the Lord wants us." Hmmm. Last night I called Jay and told him I'd received revelation they should relocate somewhere more this direction. He didn't seem swayed. One thing about Jay. He's very stubborn.
Course I'm very persistent.

Friday, August 12, 2011

thoughts of a recovering woman-hater at 3:30am

Lately I feel tired. More than normal tired.
Dinner tired, mom tired, please stop calling to ask me to do things tired.
Monday I found myself flipping through the channels to the TV by my sewing machine just in time to see Sally Field have her meltdown funeral scene in Steel Magnolias. I cried a little. Then Fried Green Tomatoes came on (it was some country station showing good southern women movies or something).
Now I gotta say Fried Green Tomatoes is probably my favorite movie. Ever maybe.
I may go years without seeing it and then I do and I bawl like I've never seen it before in my life. But then if I see it again the next day nothing changes. Every time I see Idgie's mother read to her from Ruth's letter containing her mother's obituary and the passage from Ruth where it says "Whither thou goest I will go..." let the waterworks begin.
Then when Ruth dies I'm fully into the term made famous by Oprah known as the "ugly cry."
Why do I do this? Do I think they're my friends? Do I just need a good cry?

So Tuesday comes around and I'm getting dressed in my bedroom (with the door locked-- mini-vacation!!) and I turn on the TV and guess who's there? Sally Field is there, bent over Julia Roberts, watching her slip away. As the funeral comes around I'm glued to the screen as she screams that she doesn't think she can take it and I grab the nearest thing to muffle my weeping and cry into my sports bra like my heart will break.

I suspect other women do this. I've never tried to understand why until I became one of them. A pragmatically-minded, even sometimes cool-hearted girl I suppose, until I became pregnant with my first child and boy did I eat my words of ridicule for those pansy girls the first time someone said something "mean" to me. I just need a good tear-jerker chick flick once in a while. Not just any sad movie--those just make me depressed. A good one makes me feel emotional, a little irrational--"Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion," (Dolly Parton in Steele Magnolias) and kind of . . . pathetically womanish.

I've spent a fair amount of my life denying my softer side because in a strange contradiction it turns out that showing that raw side of ourselves takes more guts than to shrink in your chair as you listen to your date cry through a movie when you don't shed a tear.

Why I've done that I don't know. It's exhausting and stupid and now I think my kids are programmed to freak out and freeze up when I try to express emotional things to them, like how much I love them and how I get teary when I think about them growing up and leaving even though I want them to move on and be successful, confident adults. Or how I may even take it harder than they do when I see them teased, disappointed, or fail, or have a fall-out with a friend. It may not even have anything to do with them. Sometimes I just cry because I feel the spirit, or because I'm remembering that time . . . or how that must have felt for so-and-so when . . .

I'm also, maybe not so shocking to you, coming off a medication. Just one. Not both. Side effect of this one being debilitating fatigue. As in I think I'll just lie here on the couch when I'm not in bed so I'll feel productive. And the emotions are all over the map.

But for every accentuated emotion I have right now, whether it be happy, or sad, or anxious, and am then able to take a breath, return to rational thought and more or less get on with my life, is a major step in the right direction. It brings me to terms with that sensitive girl inside me I can never seem to get along with.
Again, I'm like Bob in What about Bob?
Baby steps to emotion . . . baby steps to feelings . . .

Don't think this changes my opinions for even one second on those lets-mock-woman-fantasy-movies like Twilight. Sorry ladies, I know. I still don't get it.
(But if I did, just for the record, I'd pick Edward every time)

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Trials and Blessings

Nathaniel's best friend Mason lost his footing and fell off a cliff on Thursday while hiking with his brother at Lake Powell. He was life-flighted to a hospital in Arizona with very serious compound fractures in both legs just above the ankle but he's alive and without serious injury to the rest of his body. I saw a picture a few hours ago that his dad posted of him texting Nathaniel and it made me cry! He's so beat up and swollen looking with tubes and monitors all over. I'm so sad and horrified and thankful all at the same time.

He was supposed to be starting driver's ed with Nathaniel on Monday but instead he'll having his 3rd surgery in almost as many days. Hopefully that means he gets to come home sooner than later. What really matters to us is that he's coming home. He'll have to be in a wheelchair for a while and the healing process is going to be long but his mom tells me the doctors are expecting him to make a full recovery. Mason is the greatest kid you could ever know. I'm so grateful for the example he is to Nathaniel, especially since Nathaniel spends so much time over there we often joke with the Barnes family about their extra son.

Just another reminder that we never know what is coming around the corner in our lives.