Mother’s Day 2017

Mother’s day has come and gone.  It’s a year of firsts for my dear husband, and this was one of them:  Mother’s day after her passing.  I can sympathize as I’ve already been through it.  It’s a sad moment when you realize that one of the things you and your beloved have in common is the passing of a parent.  So I have tributes to the women gone from our lives.

My mother was a spit-fire of a woman.  She was strong and brilliant, but at times she allowed herself to be weak and had doubts as any of us do.  She frequently would bear the brunt of decisions she made in the past and while she wouldn’t harp on them or complain to anyone, she’s confide in me from time to time, just to get it off her chest and vent her dissatisfaction with choices she’d made.  She raised us the best that she could, being a single mother most of the time.  She never neglected our daily needs, but often felt that she did when it came to her own needs.  She still longed for love, hoping to find the right man for her life.  She was a woman, a strong woman, a proud woman.

When we were growing up, she took a hard-line with our rearing.  She was mother and father after all and needed that respect.  She didn’t hit us often but she had no reservations to giving us a swat on the ass from time to time, when we darn well deserved it.  More often than not it was ‘the look’.  She had this particular ‘look’ which she used on us when we were getting out of hand and standing on the precipice of getting a swat.  My sister has tried to emulate it, but we found it far too funny, even my mother did.  So, she disciplined us more by threat than by physical swatting.  And we respected her.  It was pretty rare to mouth off to her because she could certainly hold her own and you just knew, you were going to lose.

She was an affectionate mother too.  She enjoyed hugging us, and a kiss on the cheek was always accepted.  I remember, as a young man, she would often drag out her accordian and we’d spend a Saturday evening singing with her playing.  Yes, this little 5′ 4″ woman played the accordian, and she played it well.  Of course, she played it sitting down because if she stood up with it, she’d fall face first with the weight of it.  She made sure that we had a lot of culture in our lives.  She liked to take us to museums and galleries.  We often went to movies and when older, she would even go to the clubs with me.  Naturally all of my friends wanted her to adopt them, she was loved by my gay friends.

She worked hard, and sometimes too hard.  Weekends were for her kids but there were times that she had to work so she’d drag us to the office and let us draw or write, or even help her with her work.  She did this just so we would all be together, even though she was working.

One of the best things which she bestowed upon me was my self-respect.  When she found out I was gay, she went all hysterical, as mothers do.  She questioned the why’s and how’s, what did she do wrong along the way, and all of this self-doubting about how she raised me.  In the end, she realized this is just how I am and it didn’t make a lick of difference.  She just wanted me to be safe and happy, which is all that a mother should really hope for their child.  And I was.  And I am.

My mother in law is more of a mystery.  I didn’t have as much time to get to know her but what I know of her makes me smile.  She was a simple woman in comparison to my own mother.  She was giving and caring, always putting others before her.  She allowed herself to be silly more than my mother would.  In a way, the contrast is quite drastic.  She discussed things with my husband which my mother and I wouldn’t dare to, especially about personal issues (lady parts).  She obviously did darn well by her son, because he’s one of the most amazing men that I’ve ever met.  She was highly protective of her family, ready to stand up to anyone that dared threaten any harm.  Quite similar to my mother in that regard:  a woman who nailed a man to the windowsill with a butcher knife when he tried to break into our home;  the same woman who cut apart her ex-husband’s car with a samurai sword when he wouldn’t pay his child support that he owed her.  Compared to my mother, his mother was sedate.

These two miraculous women are no longer in our lives but always in our minds and hearts.  Together we carry their legacy by being strong and self-assured that they imparted on us the wisdom of the ages.  Our love for our mothers shall never diminish and we’ll always cling to the memories of having them here, but not with sadness.  We’re both sad that they aren’t here to share every day, but we know that the two of them are smiling at us from afar.  If they are sitting down to a cup of coffee and tea, I’m sure that they’re bickering about how we’re extravagant or bragging about one or the other.

I suppose there’s a lot of ‘keeping up with the Jones’ going on in the afterlife.

To my mother and his, to our aunts and grandmothers, a happy mother’s day from our earthly bounds to your heavenly souls.  You’re never far from our hearts, and your lessons are put to good use every day.

Valentine’s Day

A happy St. Valentine’s day to everyone.

Now that the day comes to close and my husband and I have shared dinner together, I’ll finish up the day with another post.  I’m grateful to have a great guy in my life, not only today but everyday.  Granted we have our share of problems, often driven by external forces, but we always seem to keep each other going.

I suppose that’s what it’s all about.  People often look at us and consider we have a special relationship, which we do.  Of course, they don’t realize that this all takes a lot of communication, tons of trust and talking about everything.  Not that we don’t have our little secrets but we share a lot of what’s going on or what’s in our heads with each other.  In that respect we definitely have something special and unusual when we look at other couples.

We met when I was still in the States.  My relationship was winding down, thankfully, and my mother had passed away.  I decided to get into a virtual world to pass the time and that’s where we met, through our avatars.  We spent months and months typing to each other, and then talking when they developed voice capabilities.  He called me often at work and we spent more time online.  He came over to meet me and we hit it off.  So when I lost my job and things looked grim, he asked me if I’d like to move to the UK and start a new life.  I thought about it and the pluses were definitely there, especially being with a great guy.  So I packed it all up, packed it all in and moved across the pond.

That was 9 years ago.

And we’re still going strong, despite traumas like health issues or deaths.  We keep an even keel with each other regardless of work stress or otherwise.  And all of this because we know each other very well.  Too well sometimes it seems as we frequently finish each others sentences.

Anyhow, I think the point of this is:  love isn’t for the good times.  Love is for every time.  So if you choose to love, do it fully.

Don’t you fret.  I’ll return to my usual sardonic, sarcastic self tomorrow no doubts.

From Blogger: Deck the Hells

Originally Published to Blogger:  10 Dec 2015

December, I don’t know why I loathe December so much.  Maybe it’s the closing of things at the end of the year, the finality of situations and the settling of karmic accounts.  Maybe it’s the racing to and fro which never seems to end until January hits.  Maybe it’s the detachment from the present which happens to me.  Maybe it’s the longing for the past which I’ll never get back.

The holiday season hasn’t meant anything to me for decades.  I’ve been on my own for too long for it to matter.  While I enjoy all the time with my husband, and he brings me joy all year long, I don’t seem to get that quintessential holiday spirit.  I find most of this season to be repulsive to me, in its falsehood and hypocrisy.  Personally I feel that if you can’t be pleasant all year long, don’t fake it during the holiday season.

When I was younger, we’d put up the tree with mom.  We’d bake with her, sing carols while she played the accordion, go shopping with her, and generally had a darn good time.  Even when I moved out, I’d still return home to spend the holiday with her and the family, but times were so much different.  When my grandmother was alive, we all gathered at her house.  She passed and we’d gather at the house still to be with my grandfather.  Once he passed, the whole family fell apart.  So the gatherings got smaller, and I spent the time at my mother’s house with her and my stepfather, my brother and his family, sometimes my sister and her family would come down.  It was a beautiful memory.

Once my mother passed, we all fractured even further.  I finally fell out of the picture, which is how I wanted it.  No more obligations to the family or people I despise.  My husband and I do want to spend a holiday with my sister and her boys.  But that’s the extent of my familial connections now.  I won’t speak to my brother, nor to the variety of uncles, cousins, etc which dot the planet.  I find them to be hideously loathsome in their behavior and it doesn’t suit my world view.

So now I spend my holiday with my husband and his parents, sometimes with friends which we have.  It’s quiet and pleasant.  When the day comes, I don’t wake with the childish resilience of Christmas day.  It’s another day, albeit another day to spend with my husband.  We have breakfast, and open presents.  We go to the parents and spend time there.  Then come home and have our dinner to relax and enjoy the evening.  But in truth, I miss the old parties, the old banter, the activity of it all.  I miss helping my mother with the cooking and baking, the preparations of the party, and the serving of the guests.  Old traditions die so hard, don’t they?

From Blogger: Thanksgivings

Originally Published on Blogger:  09 Nov 2015

As we approach the glorious holiday of Thanksgiving (bleh), I’d like to actually take a moment to say what I’m thankful for:

–  Waking up each morning.  I get the joy of a husband to smile at, cats that purr and snuggle you to wakefulness, thrilled at another day of seeing us, and just the fact that I can face another day

–  My husband who brings a lot of love to my life and makes me laugh a lot.  He’s a great guy, even with all the situations we need to handle.  At least we get to go through it together!

–  My sister and her boys.  What a great lady she’s grown up to be.  And my two nephews are just the greatest two guys on the planet.  We’re always wishing them the absolute best of things.

–  The few long time friends which I keep.  Yes, they’re out there, and we keep in touch.  They’re essential to my life and always there to provide a good laugh, some advice or help when needed.  In return, we do the same and always look forward to every day we can meet up with them, have a good time or support them through the bad times.

–  The cats.  Yes, they’re a source of frustration at times but I love them and couldn’t get through a day without them pouncing on me.  I just wish they would stop bullying each other.

–  A job.  Yes, a constant source of misery at times, but on the whole, I have a very fulfilling job.  I know for a fact that if I weren’t working, I’d be a basket case, much more than usual.

–   My health.  While never perfect, I’m a lot better off than most people.  And I can’t complain because I’m damn thrilled to be healthy and able to help others.

–  The future.  It sure looks good from where I’m standing!