Tuesday, October 31, 2006

The Tooth Fairy Cometh

My children were young when my marriage reached its end. After everything was said and done they ended up living with my ex husband. It wasn’t the way I wanted things to be, there were things that were worse and things that were better but we made the best of it. Weekends were spent with me, school holidays and summer holidays.

My ex was not the sort of man who believed that children should believe in fairies so while he bowed to convention regarding the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus he simply was not going to play the tooth fairy game. My eldest was the only one losing teeth at the time and I convinced her that since the Tooth Fairy was a lady that she would find her way to my house easier than to her dad’s and so she should save her fallen teeth to put under her pillow at my house.

All went along well in the tooth fairy department for a year or two. The eldest has brought her teeth to my house with unfailing regularity, and had convinced her younger sister to do the same. Number 2 daughter is a spirit unto herself however, and one day she decided to test mom’s theory about the tooth fairy. She announced that the next tooth she lost she wasn’t going to wait till the weekend visit, she was going to put that tooth under her pillow that very night.

I was blissfully unaware of the crisis my eldest faced that night until later. By now she knew that her sister was going to be disappointed as she’d secretly tried this very thing herself, only to find the tooth still there in the morning. So she waited till her sister was asleep and snuck into her room replacing the tooth with two shiny quarters from her own allowance.

She told me the story the next weekend and I tried hard not to cry. Nevermore than in that moment did the guilt and selfishness I’d felt about the divorce rise up to confront me. Nevermore than in that moment when I saw her innocence draining away. I rewarded her with a dollar for her kindness to her sister, hugged her and told her how proud I was of her. She went out to play and I sat and cried.

Believing in the tooth fairy was one of the childhood dreams that are so precious and I had let that be taken from her, I berated myself. I was immensely proud of her though and through my guilt I found a glimmer of hope that some of what I was teaching her was the reason she’d been so compassionate towards her sister.

A few weeks later, she hugged me good night and whispered in my ear. “Mommy, I lost a tooth today.” She showed me the tooth proudly. “Do you think the tooth fairy will come if I put it under my pillow?” Her face was earnest, eager for my answer and innocent of all sarcasm or guile.

“Yes, baby, I’m certain she will.”

Sunday, October 15, 2006

That resonates

One of my favourite reads started back blogging a time ago and I'm glad. Sometimes she's funny, sometimes she's sad. And sometimes she makes me squirm in my own skin when she rales about things that make her nuts and I know that I do them.

Sometimes however, simply, she resonates.

Like this post, entitled "Goal" and it's simply a plaque type picture that says. "Love like you'll never get hurt."

How terribly honest.

How absolutely terrifying.

How immediately I rejected that idea. And I doubt that I'm alone.

yet...there's a nagging honesty there, something that made me stop, pause and look over my shoulder as I ran screaming from that proposal. Why shouldn't one? Why shouldn't someone go into a relationship without all those anxieties and nasty memories of how someone trod upon your heart?

But then all these other branches of thought open up. Do you really want to lead with your heart? Time and time again. Isn't it just asking for someone to step all over you if you don't learn from past mistakes? Isn't it a repetition of the cycle if you repeat and repeat and repeatedly take up with the wrong kinda guy? Or for that matter.

And yet, that honesty nagged and nagged. I've had many people prejudge me by the fact that I looked like, sounded like, thought like someone else. I've seen people not celebrate various holidays because this person or that person did this or that or the other thing on that holiday. I mean really, do we need to outlaw breaking up on Christmas? Sometimes though, people need to just get over stuff.

I've heard sad story after story about how someone let someone go, walked away because of past experiences and not wanting to revisit those feelings. And to tell the truth I've had a moment's pause here and there myself about people.

I wish that everyone coming into my life had the same open chance that others have had. That's just not the way of it though, and I'm sure I'm not alone. Each experience colours my ability to trust, love, believe the next time around.

I wish I could have that goal. In not just love, either. People deserve a chance to be who they are. Correction, I wish I could have that goal as an achievable goal.

What's your goal?

Thursday, October 12, 2006

mountain dew, not just for drinking anymore...

So.. a few days ago I'm returning from an evening visit with my daughter (we went and saw a really dorky movie called You, Me & Dupree...normally I like owen wilson but meh...

I'm driving the sorta supra. It's a year newer than the old one (which we're still not talking about what happened to btw) but it's an automatic. It's still a fun enough car to drive and gets from point A to point B well enough but it's an 'automatic'. It's hard to explain but there's something about driving a standard. It's difficult to explain but there's a sense of being in control. It's like your brain goes to mush when you drive an automatic and you make silly decisions.

Anyway, i'm on my way home. Driving down the main thoroughfare and I see a sudden blurup of flame shoot up from the left side of the hood of the car, and then in my rear view mirror I see a flame shoot out from the car and a trail of sparks.

And yet, the car is still running. There's nothing odd about the sound of the engine and I'm not totally sure I didn't imagine it. I drive a bit further, and there it is again, a fillip of sparks behind me and still nothing indicating that anything is wrong. The car has not lost power, there's no more flames and before a chorus of facepalming and what the hell were you thinking starts, consider this. I was in traffic on a fairly busy road. Averaging 100 kmh. And it's not like any of the other drivers were in any way inclined to move the hell out of the way so I could pull over to the side of the road.

Oh, wait, there we go again, another flashing trail of sparks. Alright, it's time to find an exit. Off I get...still rolling at a regular speed, no hiccuping, no more flames. A quick phone call home on the cell and the concensus is, drive it as close to home as I can get it. It's cooked already is the thought.

Getting off the main road drops my speed to about 60 kmh. Now followed by an odd coloured plume of smoke I'm still moving with traffic and the car appears totally oblivious to any sort of issue. The smoke is not blue, indicating burning oil, nor is it a billowing cloud of white steam that would probably mean a blown head gasket. It's just smoke.

yeah yeah, I know... still no clue.

I am starting to feel uncomfortable and uneasy and all I want to do is get back onto the highway where I can keep up my speed. Miraculously I make every light but one at the very edge of the city and that seems to bode badly for the now starting to chug car. Then, the traffic is moving again and believe it or not, so is the car (and me).

But it's the beginning of the end. The dash has finally gotten a conversation going wth the various computerized controllers and is sending a flashdancing set of signals that are basically telling me to pull the hell over and get the hell outta the car. Apparently that was far too easy to do 20 minutes ago.

A few miles more, a hill or two and the gallant little car is coasting to a standstill at a conveniently located roadside set of selfweigh scales. I call home again and give my location.

Now this car is previously owned and some previous Special Person has had the incredibly annoying idea that removing the radio is as simple as snipping a few wires and yanking... causing a recurring short in the dash that as an interesting side effect requires the headlights to be turned off by unclipping an aligator clip from a wire under the dash. (And no, that was not the source of the yet to be declared problem) As I open the hood, in the dark, unlit area I've rolled to a halt I notice a glimmer of light. Curiosity certainly will kill the cat... I had to know what that flickering was so I walked around to the other side of the car and there we have it folks... a fire. Right there on the back underside of the engine on the passenger side.

I ducked into the car, grabbing my purse, cellphone, insurance and registration, a litre bottle of Mountain Dew with a few sips gone, and a camera case full of cameras and dashed to a safe distance. Setting this stuff down I flip open the cell phone and holler, "I'm on fire!!!"

"You're what now?" Hubby's distracted voice cuts through. "I'm trying to find ..." I'm not listening anymore.

"I mean the car's on fire, not me." Somehow I thought this was an important denotation to make. Now I'm back at curious and circling closer to the car, Mountain dew in hand...

Side note: On any given date or time, the back seat of my car holds anywhere from 3 to 10 half finished bottles of water. The girls are always grabbing a few bottles to take with us when we go to the horses and despite our constant nagging to the contrary, leaving them in the backseat unfinished. This time apparently, they decided to change things up and there were no bottles of anything in the back seat.

"I'm trying to put it out..."

"Let it burn..." I know he's thinking fire insurance, however I'm thinking ...my supra...

"Yeah..yeah... I'm putting it out ..." Splash! Sizzle...splash splash splash...sizzle sizzle sizzle..billow of smoke now scented with the unbelievable scent of hot burnt mountain dew.


So there I sat, for a little while, till hubby and son pulled up in son's chevy pickup. Which he repeatedly and annoying pointed out was running. and a chevy... meh...