Day 365 of an iffy year, and -because it HAS been not-quite-stellar- I am bound and determined to let loose what we call around these parts “Dada’s little bluebird of happiness and hope.” I might have mentioned this bluebird in the past; I often greet it with a negative attitude and threats to stomp on it with cleats. I’m sunshine-y that way…it helps me survive the bumps in the road.
But because it is the last day of the Iffy Year 2014, I am going to accentuate the positive. (Feel free to sing it…I sang it as I typed it.)
Accent #1: J has learned to eat anything and everything that is offered to him. Lentil soup for dinner? No problem! Serve him a bowl and he’s happily spooning into his mouth like he never hated lentils or refused to eat anything “suspicious” in appearance. Tuna steaks with couscous??? Please, sir, may I have some more?! Blanched asparagus? Wilted spinach? Pumpkin-ricotta manicotti? Hummus and pita? Yogurt and pear chips? Anything and everything with vegetables in it???? BRING…IT…ON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Accent #2: J’s size-44 pants are so big on him that they look like clown pants. At a discreet and healthy pace, he is inching towards size-38 pants. His XXL shirts look so big on him…and he can’t leave the house without a belt because even his size-40 pants start slipping down after a while.
Accent #3: J no longer wears ONLY his sandals or his snow boots. J wears sneakers. J has a pair of lace-up suede shoes that he wears when he’s going out to a nicer place. J alternates hats, and is happy making fashion statements through these. J is expanding his style horizons.
Accent #4: J no longer runs like the devil is chasing him when he sees a dog a 100 yards away. He doesn’t react that way when he sees a dog five yards away either. He has learned to take a deep breath, and walk a little faster without conveying panic in his movements. Granted, he still sprints the last few feet to our door, but it’s a significantly vast improvement from his previous attitude.
Accent #5: J has learned to manage the urge to get instantly pissed off when he doesn’t get his way. We now see a conscious effort to listen to what comes behind the NO (which had to be appended to the end of explanations before,) and -while he will insist for a while- no longer explodes like a firecracker when he doesn’t get his way. He will fume, simmer, marinate, hem and haw, but he doesn’t explode.
Accent #6: J is taking less med, and will be taking even less in less than two weeks.
Accent #7: There’s a little boy out there who is my grandson, and though we’ll never meet him and his mom wants to raise him on her own, our hearts are full of hopes and wishes for him. If the situation ever changes and they need (or want) us, we’re here. While we’re not over the moon with joy about the lack of a relationship, we know in our heart of hearts that the baby is in good hands.
Accent #8: TGG dealt with this particular development in his life with a lot more grace and courage than many guys his age. A little bit of what my dad refers to as “dragged by the hairs,” but he’s matured…somewhat…this year.
Accent #9: Every single bit of crap we went through this year, we went through together. The good, the bad, the ugly…the ups and downs…the sweet aromas, and the rank smell of the bad stuff… At the end of 2014 we remain a family. At the end of 2014 we love and forgive and respect and admire and support and encourage and prod and poke and push and shove each other…
In the spirit of the last day of an eventful (often too much so) year, I leave you with one of TGG’s favorite songs when he was a slip of a boy, back when I could sing to him (and then to J) without their discerning ears determined that I was not much of a singer…
Harry Nilsson said it well, and may our hearts, faith and blankets serve us well next year.
Have a safe and happy New Year’s Eve, my friends… From all of us to all of you: see you next year. Peace and love (and The Force, of course) be with you…always…