Monthly Archives: January 2013

Call your friends – call them now.

Ten years ago I landed a gig shelving books and telling people where the bathroom was at Barnes and Noble. It was a thankless job but it allowed me to manhandle books and drink really cheap coffee all evening long.  Hands down the best part about being a bookseller was the people I met.

Emily Morris and I met at cash wrap early one Sunday morning when we were both under-caffinated and surly, we immediately realized that a.) we both had the same intense obsession with good books b.) we both intensely hated Sunday morning book shoppers and  c.) we lived four blocks from each other. I was drawn to her, she was so sarcastic and so dry and had the most amazingly infectious smile. Unlike myself, with my weird social anxieties Emily was friends with everyone in the store, and I think we were all glad to be part of that club.  There was no subterfuge with Emily, she told you how it was – even if the truth was that you were being a total ass, she told you with a smile but she told you.

We spent a lot of time hanging out, discussing books – rummaging through thrift stores, eating, drinking – I valued her honesty and went to her when I needed a solid opinion.

One fourth of July Jason & I spent the day at her childhood home in Lebanon, we lounged by her pool becoming much better friends with her dogs than her parents (who I think were secretly horrified we showed up with a case of beer for one afternoon), and when it got dark she drove a drunk Jason and I  to some random cow pasture to watch fireworks off of the hood of her Volkswagen –  it was the best fourth of July ever.

There came a point when we unknowingly grew up, Emily moved to Norristown and became the first single 20-something I knew to buy her own home, I got married and knocked up. Our communication became sporadic, we would email and talk and not nearly often enough I would drive out to Norristown to check out her crazy DIY projects.  And of course I was always invited to her annual birthday bash that she threw every year on her birthday – Groundhogs day

But we continued our shared interest in books, Emily was a writer and when I started this blog she became one of my number one fans, it was amazing because I longed for her approval.  Last year I started a book club and as soon as she caught wind of it she asked to join – I was thrilled that this meant she was obligated to hang out with me once a month, we emailed back and forth and made plans and then life happened and the meeting got cancelled and then I got sick and then and then… I emailed her a couple of times but never heard back – I assumed she was busy, besides writing for two newspapers she also taught community college courses and spent a lot of time fixing up her house and vacuuming up the fur from her English Springer spaniel and three kittens.

In December I sent her a Christmas card and a few weeks later I got a message via facebook from a friend of hers telling me that in April Emily died in a horrific car accident.

I have never known anyone as full as life as Emily – no one who has laughed louder or harder, no one who exuded the kind of energy force she did. I cannot even understand or wrap my head around a world that is so cruel in its randomness.

Its been hard for me to accept or share with anyone – how do you begin? I do not know. All I know is that Saturday she should be turning 32 and she should be at home, with 47 of her closest friends, handing out free Punxsutawney Phil paraphernalia  My phone keeps reminding me its coming up – how do I delete that?

I miss you my friend.

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How to tell if you are a Mom

1.) If you are wearing two different pairs of shoes right now.

2.) If you have ever put scotch in a baby bottle to sneak it on to an airplane.

3.) If you have ever arrived at the mall before it opened.

4.) If you have ever been watching TV, found candy in your bra – and eaten it.

5.) If you have ever shown up to work and realized you still have conditioner in your hair.

6.) If you have ever volunteered to help someone move (or insert other awful tasks you would never have offered to help with 10 years ago) just so you could get out of the house.

7.) If you have ever accidentally dialed your pediatrician when trying to order a pizza.

8.) If you can recite word for word three entire books.

9.) If its a rare and exciting event to go to the bathroom by yourself.

10.) If you have fallen asleep from pure exhaustion before getting to the end of this list.

 

Newsletter: Month 28 & 29

Lucy,

I was so busy last month out gallivanting through southern California that we’ll have to squeeze two months of updates into this newsletter…  So many remarkable changes have happened since November, I am shocked at how quickly you have grown up . Physically you have jumped 2 shoe sizes and shot up at least an inch if not more.

OMG - how cute is that hat?

You are quick and steady on your feet – you love to jump and be swung upside down. You like to be active but tend to be on the cautious side, you look before you leap (usually) and because of this we have stopped using the baby gates and let you navigate the stairs on your own.

all grown up

We also changed your crib to a big girl bed that you are free to climb in and out of although you have never taken advantage of this freedom – you will lay in bed indefinitely until we come to get you and tell you its okay to get up.

Big Girl Bed!

You are communicating really well now, only occasionally do we have to ask you to repeat yourself. You give me directions on how to drive you places, you pick out your clothes and make jokes all the time.

Snowy Day Lucy

Over the Christmas holiday you became potty trained – something that I had dreaded everyday for the past two years ended up being no big deal, you figured it out quickly and have had only a handful of accidents in the past two weeks.

Christmas Princess

You love to go out and see and meet people but you usually decide ahead of time that you will be shy, you will say to me “Mommy, I’m going to be shy.” and then you are for 5 or 10 minutes until hanging on to me becomes boring and you decide to relax and have fun.

The hair only gets better and better

This Christmas Santa was terrifyingly scary and we decided to forego the obligatory Santa picture – we even had to keep assuring you that you wouldn’t have to see or interact with him when he stopped by to leave you presents on Christmas eve. And speaking of Christmas, you made out like a bandit – your father and I and your grandparents bought you a ton of stuff. Your Dad made you your very own rocking chair and I got you the toy I always wished had been invented when I was your age, you had a wonderful time and told us over and over that this was “the best Christmas ever!”

Made with Love

Your very favorite things right now: cheese, Dora the explorer, putting color tabs in your bathtub and reading to your lizard puppet.

Jealous much?

 

You are truly remarkable.

I love you, Mommy