Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Summer, very loose tooth and more

Yesterday was officially the first day of summer and we couldn't have asked for better weather in Western Washington.  The sun was warm and bright and the sky was blue.  Perfection.

We have a lot on the horizon for summer, and unfortunately most of it will be spent without my better half as Ahron head back out to those familiar Pacific waters.  In short there will be two family weddings, family visiting, trips to Yakima and hopefully this year the big E-7 promotion we've been waiting for. 

Exciting news in our household, my daughter officially has her first very wiggly tooth.  Actually she has two loose teeth.  I suspect the tooth fairy will be visiting 'round these parts soon. 

Speaking of teeth, I finally took the plunge and got braces!  It is pretty humiliating for now but the payoff will be worth it to have a beautiful smile. 

Defining Motherhood

Note: I thought this would be fun twist in Defining Deployment since in addition to being a Navy spouse, my first job is to be a mom

Motherhood is:

Walking into your bathroom and seeing Spongebob Squarepants band-aids stuck like stickers all over the floor.  Cue me yelling, "Who got into the band aids?"

Friday, June 3, 2011

Do you ever think in poetry?

I do. 
I wrote my first poem in second grade.  Mrs. McKeown, my teacher at McKinley Elementary, assigned us a poem after we read a poem book about the ocean.  I remember writing it, carefully choosing rhymes that would make sense, and sound nice, and also tell a story.  I wish I still had it.  I remember it was very clever and funny too. 

From that very first poem I wrote, my love of poetry took off.  I read it voraciously.  In the beginning, Shel Silverstein was my absolute favorite.  He still remains one of my favorites.  I loved his innocence in the poems he wrote. 

When I was 10, my Dad encouraged me to write a poem for a contest at U.S. Bank, his place of employment at the time.  The poem had to be in the theme of African-American History Month.  My limited knowledge of the struggles of African-Americans  and civil rights in general led me to write about Rosa Parks.  I knew her story well from Women's History Month presentations put on at my school.  I submitted the poem and was selected as one of the winners from the Northwest.  This encouraged me greatly.  One of the other winners, a kindly older gentleman at the reading in Seattle, shook my hand afterward.  He told me something that still affects me deeply.  "Never stop writing," he said to me.  In all of my ten-year old meekness, I took his advice to heart, and very seriously. 

Through my teenage years, poetry acted as a buffer between my very dramatic emotions and the scenes unfolding around me.  I felt very out of control in my teenage years.  Our family dynamic was changing a lot at the time, as my older brother grew into an angry teenager and fought a lot with my parents.  I buried myself into the social escapades of junior high and high school as all teenagers do, and wrote poems about relationships that I thought I was having with boys (I wasn't, it was mostly in my head), about my family and the things that were important to me.  My poems became somewhat angst-filled and occasionally idealistic about the future. 

It always came very naturally to me, writing and poetry.  As I came of age in my high school years and began to become very aware of my internal thinking, I noticed that a lot of times I would think in poetry.  The way I describe a scene in my head sounded poetic.  When I walked alone under the stars in Guam, poems swirled in my head.  When I married my best friend, when we looked into the eyes of our first born and then second, poems and words from poems I had read came to me and I formed my own.

Over the last six years since my first child was born and I became immersed in the busy life of a stay-at-home-mom, I've found that the urge to write is largely missing.  With the exception of a few moments over the last few years I haven't written much beyond these blog posts.  I am mostly indifferent to it, but sometimes feel a twinge of sadness for my dwindling gifts.  But the blog posts have helped to awaken a part of me that I believe is a permanent part of my soul.  It gives me a place to put something out into the universe, whether it's read or not by anyone, I don't care.  But at least it's coming out of me. 

So, here's my thoughts for this morning as I drove back from taking my daughter to school.  Every time I drive down this main road in town called Mile Hill Drive, I think this.  So now it can come to the light. 

Descending from Mile Hill Drive,
I can see far into the valley of the Olympic Mountains. 
In winter, the gray rocks rise and give way the white snow that covers her range.
Now it's the end of spring and the deep shades of green fill the valley and make the
mountains appear darker somehow. 
Each time I drive down, I enjoy it so much. 
The view gives me an idea of just how small we are in this universe.   
But I feel lucky to be part of it.