Monthly Archives: November 2011

All I want for Christmas is stitches


All ornaments made by yours truly

In plugging in our small Christmas tree today, I looked at all the decorations I made throughout my elementary school days. One in particular caught my eye as the afternoon sun made the ornament shimmer. I made this particular ornament in the third grade the morning after my father dropped me on head.

It was normal for a morning in the third grade for my dad to carry me from my pink warm covers to lay on the couch with my Mickey Mouse blanket while he fixed me breakfast.  Still in my sleep coma, my dad always picked up me to deliver me to my seat at the breakfast table. After scarfing down my strawberry Pop-Tart, I lifted my arms up for dad to carry me back to the living room, so I could resume my watching of cartoons.

My dad had a stumble in our thirty feet journey from the kitchen to the living room. The accidentally left open bread drawer at the kitchen counter intersected with our path to the couch. He never noticed it was still open from getting bread for his toast, and off we went. Dad tripped and my head hit the adjoining counter.

I started screaming, but it was not because I was in pain. I was more concerned with my dad who was still trying to scrape himself off the lament kitchen floor. My mom came tearing out the bathroom in her blue bathrobe wondering what the loud thud and shrills were about. She thought my dad had a heart attack until she looked at me.

Blood was pulsing out of my eye brow, and she grabbed my arm and sat me down. Once she cleaned up my face, she kept applying pressure to my face. It didn’t really hurt, but the one thing I noticed was the time ticking on the clock. It was drawing time for mom to take me to school.

“When are we leaving for school?” I asked.

My mom looked at me like I was crazy. Perhaps, she wondered if the fall caused me to think such a crazy thought. I am not sure. She told me I wasn’t going to school.

That’s when I started crying. I think I was even close to sobbing. Not going to school? Didn’t she know what today was? We were supposed to make ornaments and finish our Christmas projects. I couldn’t miss a day like that. Plus, I was supposed to wear my new white Christmas sweater that day. She couldn’t keep me from school.

After much crying, begging, and sobbing, my mother stuck a butterfly band-aid across my eye brow. She tried to convince me that I needed to get stitches. I just kept shaking my head no. I wanted to go to school, and no one was going to stop me. Well of course my mom would have, but she apparently let me go.

So, off in my new white Christmas sweater I went. I managed not to get any blood on my sweater while I put it on. I got to finish my Christmas poster we were making, and I got to finish up all my ornaments to bring them home.

I still have  a scar in my eye brow as a result of the fall. However, that Christmas I remember I got some of the best presents ever from Santa and my presents. Maybe Santa felt a little guilty that my parents dropped me on head.


Can you pass the grief?


Along with the turkey and dressing passed along at my Thanksgiving table next Thursday, I expect a big heap of grief  on my plate. A helping I plan to scoop right off and pretend it never graced my presence in the first place.

It’s hard for me to fathom the fact that Thanksgiving is next week. I usually embrace this time of year with open arms. I love the aromas escaping from my kitchen, and I always enjoyed the treats  scattered on my counter top. Some of those treats made especially just for me.

Recently, I read Rick Bragg’s Thanksgiving article in Southern Living magazine. His article was all about his mother’s turkey and mocking those perfect looking turkeys everyone sees on the front of magazines and on TV. Most importantly, his article was primarily about his mother and how she made their meal.  That is when it hit me. Thanksgiving will never be the same ever again.

They say the first year is the hardest. Whoever they even is. I am not sure how I feel about the holidays to be honest. I can’t exactly skip Thanksgiving and skipping Christmas is sacrilegious. Or at least it would be for me.

I dread November 24, and if I see that blasted commercial about sitting at the “big table” this year, I might just punch the TV.  I know when I wake up that morning from beneath all my blankets in my bed at home, my favorite southern cook won’t be scuffing around the kitchen in the grandmother sweatshirt I gave her 12 years ago with ragged jeans she took out of the closet just for this occasion.

I sat here wondering recently who was going to make all the things my grandmother made. Given in these past few years my dad put on his apron to help, but he’s not done the important stuff like the dressing, the macaroni and pecan pies.

However, despite the fact that it sounds like I am just missing my grandmother since she was the great food provider, that is not the case. Who is going to sit beside me and hold my hand as we pray and tell God what we are thankful for this year?

I share these feelings through writing. I don’t think I really can any other way. I am emotionally dumb, and someone the other day nicknamed a robot. Perhaps you think that is malice, callous, and all the words that have similar ending sound. I know I am not the only going to be facing losing someone this holiday season.

It’s hard for me to keep it in perspective. It’s hard for me to even write this because that means I have to remember and not just ignore it as I do every day.

Grief is the trickiest emotion of all to deal with, or so I have discovered. It can strike at any time and anywhere. I know it’s about to strike as I approach the great day of thanks next week.

Perhaps, among all the food on my plate and as I reflect on what God gave me, I should keep in mind this one important thought. God didn’t have to give me my grandmother for all 18 years of my life. Not everyone is blessed with having their grandmother living with them. Yes, I said blessed even though some days she drove me straight up the wall.

God blessed me with the incredible, hardworking, Christian woman I knew as my grandmother. She had her flaws and faults. She annoyed me, and some days all we did was argue. Despite all the negative, I know for a fact she loved me more than life itself.

That  in itself is a gift. The most precious gift I am thankful for this holiday season.

Mosh Pit 101


"Dedication takes a lifetime, but dreams only last for a night." ~All Time Low

You see all these people? Well, guess what. They were all behind me at the All Time Low concert. I never intended to be next to the cold barricade fencing all the crazy fans. However, I ended up that way with little to no effort. How you might ask? The answer to that friends is learning how to mosh pit.

I have been to a variety of concerts over time. Those that are standing, sitting, etc. I have been to a lot. I went to the 30 Seconds to Mars concert last year, which was my second time to ever be in crowd that wanted to jump, sway, push and sweat all at the same time. It ended badly, and I told myself I would never do it again. Except I did.

Last night, I ended up right next to the stage and singing to my heart’s content along with one of my favorite bands. I must say that I decided to just go flow  instead of being angered by all the chaos. I learned a few things just learning to roll with the crowd.

1) Be careful with your cellphone

I found it wise to be diligent with your phone in a mosh pit. People are constantly moving. Constantly jumping. Constantly squishing you. Especially that six foot tall guy that has blocked your view the entire concert. Yes, oh friends be alert. I dropped my phone last night and somehow heard it hit the concrete floor. I immediately grabbed it, but my phone cover didn’t survive. I am sure my pretty, purple cover was trampled under someone’s Converse.

2) Watch out for crowd surfers

Last night at the concert, the lead singer from All Time Low announced that it was not a real concert until someone decided to crowd surf. Well, that’s all fine and good. I honestly don’t care. Until it affects me that is. I watched all the crowd surfers go by. Some lost their clothes or a shoe. Others made it through effortlessly. And some got thrown over the barricade. While there are major perks to being in the front row, you never know when the crowd surfers are coming. I got kicked in the back of head hard enough to leave a knot. I guess that’s the price you pay for being in the front row.

3) You will sweat and get sweated upon

I know what you’re thinking. Sounds gross, right? Trust me it is. You notice when you walk out into the crisp night air and discovered your drenched and wet. You especially know something happened when you went in with straight hair and walked out with curls. I guess it’s all just apart of the concert atmosphere. I found some people I graduated high school with among the crowd. One of my friends said that he always had a motto for concerts. He told me that if I didn’t come out with 15 other people’s sweat, I wasn’t doing it right. I am fairly certain I didn’t have to worry about that. In fact, I am sure I achieved.

4) Just bounce along

I felt like a ball being pelted in one of those old school pinball machines. I couldn’t move, and I was trapped. Everyone is trying to push their way to the front thinking if they push hard enough, they will get there. Logically not everyone can be up front. Plus, everyone feels the need to jump and sway as they push to the beat. So between all the crowd shifting, I learned to literally go with the flow of things. There was nothing I could, so I ended up front. Such a small price to pay for a great view. I thank all the tall people.