I thought something was up several weeks ago when my husband, Roger, said to me, “I want you to do something to make you feel good about yourself. Why don’t you make a list of all of your friends?”
So I did and I showed it to him. See? I have friends in the computer and friends not in the computer and friends who exist in both places.
Then my sneaky husband colluded with my sneaky sister, my sneaky mom and a sneaky friend to throw me a sneaky surprise party.
Roger and I had just finished having a romantic dinner downtown and were discussion our after-dinner options. We’d decided on going home to watch a movie on demand. On the way to the car, Roger casually asked if I wanted to step into the dueling piano bar that was straight ahead, just past our car. I shrugged and said, “Sure,”* thinking I’d love to sing a little song, dance a little dance and drink a little drink before we turned in for the night.
When we walked into the door of the venue, I saw a slew of familiar faces. People from my family (Mom and Dad in a bar I was too old for!). My entire Vino Support Group. My local blogging friends, an ALI blogging friend. A friend from a job long past, a yoga friend, a friend from my meditation class. It was like basking in 360 degrees (arc, not heat) of love, accompanied by music from all my decades. All my worlds colliding in such a celebratory way
As you can see, I thoroughly enjoyed myself.
Even though this isn’t a perfect moment post (those will go up on December 31 — get yours ready), I had so many perfect moments that night and into the next day as I daydreamed about My Special Night.
I can’t wait ’til the next milestone.
But I will.
* What would have happened if I’d said, “Nah…I’m tired”?
August, 2008. Dear Diary. Today I publicly declared myself a Writer, in response to Melissa’s Wishing Tree post. I’m still new at this and I don’t really know how bloggers make a living at blogging, but surely people make a living writing. Right?
II. Failed cycle
Oct 2009. Dear Diary. Yay, me! I met my self-imposed deadline. I got my book proposal finished by Halloween and now am finding agents to send it to.
But my writing coach, in a ripping-off-the-Band-aid kind of way, told me that I was not going to get this out now because the proposal is riddled with problems. Surely I can fix the issues and have the proposal ready to go early in 2010, right?
November, 2010. Dear Diary. Well, anOTHER Halloween has passed and I finally finished the proposal AGAIN. Writing Coach approves. I’ve been sending my query letter to 5-10 agents a week. A few have asked for the full proposal, and I’m so excited that I’ve begun to get rejections. Every “No” gets me closer to “Yes,” right?
IV. Is that a pink line?
December, 2010. Dear Diary. One very kind agent has pointed out several “areas for improvement” in my proposal. She suggests that before she take me on that I must find a celebrity to endorse my book. Surely finding a person who knows a person who knows a famous person who will do a stranger a favor shouldn’t be that hard, right?
IV. The pink line darkens.
May, 2011. Dear Diary. I met her through the American Fertility Association and she said yes! Brenda Strong, the actress who plays Bobby Ewing’s wife in the Dallas remake, agreed to write the foreword to my book! It’s going to be easy coasting from here on out, right?
August, 2011. Dear Diary. Guess what! Remember that helpful agent who offered me constructive criticism? Well she’s been helping me turn out a proposal she feels comfortable taking to publishers. As of today, with the signing of our contract, I’ve got a literary agent! She’ll probably have editors beating down her door to publish my book, right?
VI. Fetal pole or just a smudge?
September, 2011. Dear Diary. My agent sends me a notice every time she hears from a publisher she’s pitched. The tally so far is:
Outright rejections: 21
Nibbles that turn into rejections: 8
Self-publishing is always an option, right?
November, 2011. Dear Friends. I’m not paper pregnant and I’m not even paperback pregnant.
PEOPLE. I AM GOING TO GIVE BIRTH TO A HARDCOVER BOOK!
And not all by myself. I gained a co-author along the way. I’m thrilled that Crystal, my daughter’s first mom, is adding her voice to the book. In fact, our book will have many voices in it — adult adoptees, birth parents, adoptive parents and pre-adoptive parents, especially those with interest and experience in open adoption. We’ll be asking for some of you to share your stories over the next several months while we write the book , so stay tuned.
Reed’s wallet had been lost for weeks. Sadly, he had a solid wad of money in it, given to him by his Grandfather in Boston, who had recently installed a toll transponder and had no further need for a 5 gallon barrel of change he’d collected. They’d gone to the bank to change the coins into bills and split it between the two grandkids, and Reed’s wallet had been bulging for a couple of weeks.
It went missing and Reed looked for it half-heartedly. It was only when he had immediate needs (like while we were in Tar.get) that he desperately wanted his wallet found. When he was actually home, amid the chaos that is his room, he couldn’t be bothered to look.
Until the weekend that Bruno Mars came to town. I told the kids I would take them to the concert if they would pay for half their tickets — about $18. You may think this is mean, but they appreciate things more when they’ve used their own energy to pay for it.
Suddenly Reed REALLY wanted to find his wallet, but without actually having to look for it. Is it in your room, Reed? Mommmm! I already looked there! In the car? Mommmm! I already looked there! In the couch? Mommmm! I already looked there! In your drawers, under your bed, in your laundry? Mommmm! I already looked in all those places! I’m dooooooooooomed! My life is ovvvverrrrrr because I can’t go to the conceeeeeeeert! Waaaaaah, waaaaaaah!
Tessa and I cleaned his entire room looking for the dratted thing. It took all freakin’ afternoon. He “helped” us by complaining less loudly than usual.
Finally I looked in one of the previously looked-in places:
couch cushion vortex
Reed’s relief brought him to tears.
Best! Mom! Ever! he said as he hugged me.
Who is poised to take over the King of Pop crown now that Michael Jackson is gone? My vote goes to Bruno Mars. He’s got pop instincts as a writer of catchy songs, pop moves as a dancer, and he’s pretty darn cute. Just check out this or this or this:
(And yes, some of the lyrics did cause us to have a discussion about appropriateness.)
Having the long concert history that I do — dating all the way back to Barry Manilow (don’t hate me because I’m cool) — I know how valuable it will be for them someday to say, “I saw Bruno Mars at the very beginning of his career.” And also, how groovy is it to take your kids to their first concert?
So I took Tessa and Reed. I remembered to bring binoculars and three pairs of ear plugs. Show time was at 7:30 with one opening act. But there was an additional band on stage before the billed opener, which means that Bruno Mars didn’t hit the stage until 9:40 pm. Sure, there was some impatient squirming, but it was all worth it when Bruno finally came out.
(Apologies for the quality. There was a lot of jumping up and down going on.)
We rocked and rolled and yelled and danced and had a blast together. The show lasted until 11:30 pm and the kids were troopers. They were even able to make the trek back to the parking lot. I had moments of panic toward the end when I thought I might have to carry two sleeping children a quarter-mile to the car (by the way, Roger was out of town at this time).
It was a memory in the making. Tessa and Reed exclaimed, through their sleepiness, that it was the “best night of my entire life!” And for a time I was the…
Best! Mom! Ever!
Some of the best things about writing for MileHighMamas, besides getting to know all the other Mamas, are the perks that our editor is sometimes able to share with us. This time it was entry for our families to Water World, the largest water park in the US — 67 acres. We were there all day and only able to visit a fraction of the attractions.
Not only did we get in with complimentary passes, but Water World also provided us lunch and valet service for the enormous inflatable rafts that the common people had to lug up the hills. Our very special kids? Walked to the top of the rides, cut in line by virtue of their special wristbands, and were awarded a raft out of the stash already at the top.
Tessa and Reed especially loved hanging out on the “beach” at Thunder Bay. The sandless beach with the soda pop logo.
Except for my periodic calling in for sunscreen slathering, once again I was the Best! Mom! Ever!
With my frequent insistence on tooth-brushing an clothes-folding and TV-limiting and general No-ing, hey, I’ll take Best! Mom! Ever! every time I can get it.