Sunday, May 10, 2009
Today is mothers’ day. A tribute to all mothers. However this day seems more about the flower shops, jewelers, candy stores making an extra buck, than it is celebrating mothers. Mothers should be celebrated and appreciated every day. Why just one day? I am not saying this because I used to be a mother or because I never got flowers on mother’s day, but simply because mother’s are the most under appreciated people in the entire world and they actually have the most important job of all. It is proven that a stay-at home-mom with 1 child is the equivalent of a full time job. But what if she has 2 children or more and has a full time job? Around this time of year, the mom does get more air time on tv, just to remind us all to remember our mothers. That is good, but there are a certain kind of mother, who is forgotten or just not mentioned. The mother of a special needs child. That is not only a full time job, but that is 24/7. And very often is is a life or death situation. I know. I use to be one.
As I mentioned, I didn’t get flowers or candy on mother’s day, and at times it did make me feel under appreciated. But instead of moaning about it, I started to appreciate myself.
Martin and I made a ritual. It started when he was about 13-14. Forgive me if my memory is not what it used to be.
Every Monday Martin and I would go down to the flower shop. The flower lady knew that we needed some time to ourselves before she came over. I would take a few flowers and let Martin smell them. It always made him smile. I would then ask him which color he wanted for mummy’s flowers. He wasn’t able to verbalize it, but I knew his sign, and with his eyes he always picked orange. No doubt that was his favorite color. So 8 times out of 10 we got a orange flowers, but at times I did ask if he would choose a different color. He did.
We called the flower lady over and she made them in to a beautiful bouquet. I didn’t want to see her do it, because i wanted to be surprised. She wrapped them for me and I put them on Martin’s table, so he could “carry” them back to the flat. Then he would give me the sign, that I could take them and together we would open them. He loved the iihh and ooohhh that followed. So did I.
Unfortunately flowers are quite expensive, so we had to change it to every other week and then to once a month. But it was something that we did together and that made me feel good and appreciated.
So I may not have gotten flowers on the official mother’s day , but every time we went to the flower shop, it felt like mothers day to me.
Maybe there is a lesson to all moms. Don’t wait to get flowers once a year. If you want to change a bad day in to a good day, buy yourself some flowers. You truly deserve it. So until the day comes when mothers are appreciated every day, then I guess that one day out of 365 is a start.
Happy Mother’s day all. But a big special shout out to the special needs mothers out there.
You are truly appreciated, by me. trust me, I used to be one.
Saturday, May 9, 2009
There is a program called Intervention. It aires on A&E on Monday night. Unfortunately it aires at the same time as CBS Big Bang Theory. Very funny show, however back to intervention. If you don’t know the program, here is a quick recap. You follow an addict for a time, before family and professionals stage an intervention and ( hopefully) sends the addict to rehab, where they will get clean and learn new way of coping with their issues.
It saddens me to watch the amount of pain these people are in. But it also makes me think, well I am not that bad. Is that really true. I may not need an intervention and I haven’t yet blacked out, but I could use a support group. I just haven’t found the right one for me. A few come close. Overeaters anonymous. Well, I have put on 10 pounds since being here, but more of that later. But I am not one of those who eat buckets and buckets of KFC, ice cream, cookies, or burgers.
No I am a cheese - aholic.
I love cheese. The stronger the better. I love the ones that smells like they should have been thrown out long time ago.
The thing is, I just can have one slice of cheese on a piece of toast. Well that depends. What is considered a slice? To me a couple of inches would be a slice. If I buy a packet of precut I will just put several pieces on.
I normally make sandwiches for Mike for his lunch. At one time he did get cheese on top of the cold cut, but not any more. If cheese is in the house, it wont stay long. It goes straight to my hips via my mouth and stomach.
So I have given myself an intervention. I haven’t had cheese in the house for a long time and I really really miss it. I know that if it is in the house I will eat it. But I found a way to outsmart myself, as a true cheese-aholic would. I kept buying blue cheese dressing. So now I have intervened.
For 30 days I will not have blue cheese dressing. Not quite sure what to do with the bottle I have got. Have to give it away. Too tempting. Or maybe just ask Mike to hide it. It may not sound like much, but this is going cold turkey for me.
I will keep you posted.
When somebody ask, who are you, many of us may say our country of origin. I am Danish, I am American, I am Austrian and so on. Maybe we will use our job title. I am a teacher, I am a writer, computer nerd, but now I can add another title. I am an alien. I must admit, I always thought that aliens were small green creatures who came from outer space to visit area 51 in Nevada, or just something or someone
Hollywood invented to make movies and money. But apparently I am now one. The reason I know this, the American government told me.
As a Danish citizen, I am used to filling out a lot of forms, when entering the US. To get through emigration, I had to stand in the visitors line, along with row after row of other visitors and a lot of patience, have my left and right index finger printed, not forgetting having my picture taken. But before that could take place, the immigration officer had gone through all my papers, making sure, I would be leaving the country again and also know for what reason I was in the US. Business or pleasure.
But coming to the US from Denmark this time was very different.
I was no longer a visitor, so I couldn’t go in the visitors line. Thank God, because it was already filling up. So i continued a little further. US citizens only, read the next sign. That is not me either. Who am I? and where do I go? Wont they let me in? But just before panic set in, I saw my sign. Aliens further along. Alien, yep that is me.
I had my own line in Newark airport.
The best thing was, I didn’t have to wait at all. Went straight to the little booth and showed my green card.
The officer smiled, they normally never do, and said welcome back.
Ah. It is good to be an alien. A legal alien, that is.
War was declared a long time ago.
Last year we discovered a woodchuck had taken up residence under our shed. Actually I believe he came with the house, when we bought it last June, but the previous owner “forgot” to tell that the house came with pets. But after 1 year of “ Ha, I am still here”, we had enough. We already bought the have-a -heart trap, but the only animals we had caught so far, was squirrels. Not that I don’t want to get rid of them, but for now we had our minds set one something bigger.
once again we set the trap and filled it with some of his, according to google favorite foods. And just waited. and waited.
Shortly after Mike had gone to work he was trapped. I started to feel sorry for the guy. But then I just looked at the huge hole he had dug in the yard, not to mention how it will look under the shed.
I kept my eye on him to make sure he was ok, until we could release him.
There was a time, when I though he was dead, because he was not moving even if I came up close. So I called mike and said, that now it was a whole new ball game, but either Jesus came by to revive him or he was just plying dead, there he was ...eating.
As soon as Mike came home, we took him to the truck. Well it actually took a bit longer, because mike was afraid Chukie would get out of the trap and attack him. But Chukie didn’t. He just lay there. As still as possible. We found a very nice spot on the mountain with lots of trees and no houses. Problem was, we couldn’t remember how to open the trap. But two minds work better than one, so together we figured it out, while Chukie, was thinking, “Hey get on with it. i am smelling freedom here.”
What seemed to take forever, but probably not more than a 15 seconds the trap door opened and Chukie left well ran as fast as he could in one direction and Mike who was sure to be at the receiving end of Chukie’s revenge, ran in the other direction.
But it was a fine moment. Setting him free to roam to take up housing somewhere else.
Back in our own yard, we filled the hole and sat down to enjoy a before dinner drink. But we both kept looking in the direction of the shed expecting him to pop his cute little head out. I kind of miss him, Mike said. Me too, I answered, but I have to remember to put up the No Vacancy sign.
I spent last week in my old home. I visited Denmark, where I was born. I stayed with my parents. Even if I am 45, I still felt like a little girl. My mother made sure I got up in time for my appointments, and when I got out of bed, breakfast was awaiting. Ahhh. It was good to be home. However it wasn’t just a social visit. I had to among other things, tell the Danish local counsel , that I was moving to the US. I have filled out form for moving before and just mailed them, but because I was leaving the country, I had to show up and do it in person. I had a strange feeling inside, when I filled out the form. Name, old Danish address, new US address. That was all ok, but when asked the reason and for how long, something changed inside me. The form asked which would apply for me. 1 going to war... no. just being married.
2 work....No. haven’t found one yet, and that wasn’t what they meant.
3 other... Yes, that must be the one. Married to an US citizen.
The next question took me by surprise. How long do you plan to be out of the country? Maybe I should call Mike and ask before I answer. But I wrote permanently. The whole thing took less than 5 minutes. What had I been so nervous about? This was just paperwork. The big move was and is inside of me.
Back out on the street, I kept thinking about how much had happened in the past 2 years. Martin’s death and everything that came with that. Having to move to a new flat. The flat I lived in was for disabled only, loosing my income, because Martin was considered my job, so I got full pay as a care taker. My van, which I loved, had to be sold. I no longer had a need for such a van. Martin was in a wheelchair, so i had needed it. As Martin was considered a job, i hadn’t had a “regular” 9-5 job in 18 years. I had a 24/7 but that doesn’t count.
Meeting Mike, falling in love, moving to US. , getting married, starting over. Not knowing any one, anything, not even where the local supermarket was. And if I did know, I couldn’t get there, because by then i didn’t have a car.
Oh yes, in between all that, having to mourn the loss of my beloved son.
When I say, I am packing my suitcase, it isn’t the whole truth. I took my suitcase out from the closet. I am thinking about packing. I actually never pack until the day/evening before. Even if I have known for months that the travel date is fast approaching. Why is that? Is it because I am afraid that I might use some of the clothes intended for the trip. Maybe. But I do have a washing machine , so that really shouldn’t be an issue.
But here I am, and knowing myself, I will run around saturday night trying to find some clean clothes to wear, because I will of course have forgotten to do the laundry. Where am I going? Let me just explain. I am a Danish citizen, happily married and living in the center of the known Universe, or so I was told when I moved here, Newington Connecticut. USA. I do feel that CT is my home. I really love it here. But I have only lived here for 1 year and I have lived 44 years in Denmark. So as I am going to Denmark, am I then going “home”? I will be staying at my parents flat, which is the place I call my childhood home, so I guess, even if I will be a guest, at some point I will be saying, it is good to be home. However, when I think of HOME, it is our small house in Newington.
I love it here, even if I do miss my family and friends. Thank God for skype, facebook, email, and telephone. Mostly Skype. That gives me the opportunity to see who I am talking to. That is nice. But I was talking about packing. See I did it again. I try so hard to avoid it. I keep hoping that an angel of packing, will have done it, during the night or just when I am not looking, but as I have travelled a fair amount in my life, I should realize, a packing angel, doesn’t exists. Or does she? Well actually she does. She comes in the form of my mother. My mother is the super packer. She is in a league of her own. She can get everything in to nothing, if you know what I mean. And to really rub it in how good she is, when one of the suitcases she has packed is opened and the clothes hung up.... not a wrinkle in sight.
Maybe I secretly hope, that my mother will make some sort of transatlantic soul flight, during the night and pack for me. It hasn’t happened yet, so I am not keeping my hopes up.