Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Letting Go

I hate change.  Always.  Any kind of change.  I drag my feet.  I put down roots and have to be pulled out to go to the next square. There have been huge milestones in my life that are all about change.  When I was 8 years old, I experienced my first move from one neighborhood to another.  New school, new friends.  Just far enough away from the old school that I really didn't go back to visit much.  When I graduated from high school and went to college, I really wasn't ready to go.  I had a very tough time leaving and struggled my whole first quarter at UCLA.  Homesick.  When I graduated from college and made the move to NYC, it was 100% my idea.  For the first time, I felt I really needed a change.  I struggled again for the first couple of months, but finally found my place.  I stayed in my first job too long.  It was a very unhealthy atmosphere, but I loved the people.  I didn't know where to go or what to do.  One too many office blow-ups and I finally quit.  Opened my own boutique office with another woman and, again, stayed too long.  What was once a thriving and thrilling business, started to turn into another unhealthy atmosphere.  It wasn't easy to make that change.  That was one of the most difficult "letting go's"  I ever had, but what made it easier...

I had the two most wonderful and beautiful twins at home.  They are incredible children and I feel very privileged to have them in my life.  My husband and I struggled for many years to have children, some may call them "synthetic," but I call them the greatest gifts of my life.  We hit the jackpot.  Don't get me wrong, it hasn't always been easy.  No one can say that, but it's been a true joy.  With every change and step in their lives, I have had to adjust.  The safety and comfort of nursery school to kindergarten was huge.  I cried like a baby at their graduation.  It meant starting all over again for me with new friends and a new school.  When they first went to sleep away camp, I couldn't understand it at all.  A foreign thing coming from suburban California.  I didn't know anyone that went away, maybe girl scout camp.  Huge.  Seven weeks without my children.  They wanted to go.  I was never going to send them until they begged me.  I would've never sent them, though I think it was the right thing for a NYC kid. Stepping up from 5th grade to middle school was another big change. From being able to drop the kids off and spend time in the room every morning to them getting on the city bus and going by themselves, as I silently wept at home, onward with this new chapter of our lives. 

When high school began, the challenges were different.  There were many more unsanctioned social events to maneuver.  Very stressful.  As I have often stated, it's worse for my generation because we remember all the things we were doing in high school.  My parents generation either didn't do anything or didn't remember. The terror when your kids start going out to parties of people you don't know, based only on trust.  Yikes!  So they are Seniors.  Things that when I was a kid we didn't do, they do here.  Not that I have to say yes to everything, but I am very clear that a lot of the things are my problem, not theirs.  So it's Spring break.  In the NYC Independent Schools the thing to do is go to the Bahamas for a wild, drinking, dancing, gambling, whatever.  My husband and I really tortured over this decision.  No good comes from alcohol.  I 100% believe that.  I am not a fan of alcohol for the most part.  Been around too many drunks to turn me off for a life time.  Yes, I do drink occasionally, but that over-served situation is disgusting at an age.  The only thing that concerns me more in teenagers is the inexperience of life.  We caved.  

They are currently there with 100's of other Seniors from NYC.  I've been calling it The Parent's Nightmare instead of the Spring Break trip.  Do I think it's a smart idea. Absolutely not.  But as I roam around from room to room, maybe it's a glimpse of what next year will be like for me.  They will be in college and I won't be there to help them out.  The terror and fear of what may happen is ever present, but maybe it will subside little by little.  Maybe this is a practice round for all of us.  This is certainly the most freedom these kids have ever had.  I see all the movies, Natalie Holloway, TV shows, flash through my mind.  I do know at the age of 55 what lurks in the shadows.  I do have an extremely heightened sense of self-preservation, but that doesn't mean that when I was 17, for all my common sense, I didn't get into some scrapes that could've ruined my life.  I remember too much.  Sigh.

This is day two.  I am still breathing.  I am still fearful. I am still hopeful. 

Sidebars:  I wholeheartedly stand by Elton John and his stance on Dolce and Gabbana.  I can't believe that they used such verbiage about same sex couples with children.  They do have the right to their opinions, of course, but the wording was so hurtful to millions of people, gay or straight.  We wouldn't have our children without the help of science.  Synthetic??  As I said, I don't own anything DG, but I won't begin now. As a matter of fact, I was looking at glass frames yesterday and moved right past the DG section. Still loving The Voice more than I can tell you.  The singing is incredible and I can't love Pharell Williams more than I do. The whole line-up is great.  I can't believe that Showtime's Episodes is already over.  That's way to quick.  Again, if you're not watching, you must give it a go.  30 minutes of heaven.  Took the family to see The Heidi Chronicles on Broadway over the weekend.  Still holds up. Wendy Wasserstein died way too soon.  If you are a theatre lover and also lived in NYC in the 80's, I highly recommend Wendy's Boys.  Really good read about Wendy and her life.  Off to see The Audience tonight starring Helen Mirren. Can't wait.  Enjoy your St. Patrick's Day.  Don't drink too much, oh, please.  Erin Go Bragh!

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Tuesday, March 10, 2015

The Thaw Begins

I think I have Seasonal Affective Disorder.  I never really thought about it. Winter's are often a challenge but, this year, it's been a killer.  I'm sure that for those of us in the Northeast the collective S.A.D. has be on the rise.  Do you think they came up with the acronym first and put words to fit or just a coincidence?  Anyway, this past Sunday was our first glimpse of Spring.  It was a palpable shift in mood.  The sun was shining, the coats got lighter, and moods were brighter.  It's only on Sunday that I realized how depressed I have been.  

Now, honestly, there's so much to be depressed about.  The news is so bleak.  For every great human interest story, there are ten crappy stories.  Our Congress sucks.  There's no two ways about it.  Our Republican Congress sucks more.  Their latest stunt writing to the Iranian leader is a National disgrace.  Since when do we air our dirty laundry?  And internationally?  Where are you now, Rudy Guiliani?  Is that patriotic and love of country?  That not one prominent Republican went to honor the anniversary in Selma is disgusting.  Former President G.W.Bush and Laura Bush were present, but also made it more glaring that John Boehner and Mitch McConnell weren't there.  What the hell?  What can the Republican leadership be thinking?  Jeb Bush is the most moderate Republican running for President '16.  Can you imagine that?  And because he is for comprehensive immigration reform, he probably won't make it past New Hampshire.  The Southern arm of the party don't like it, don't want it, will not vote.  Okay, so the Democrats don't really have anyone either to run, but seems that no matter who runs will beat any Republican candidate.  The majority of the country is moderate.  Period.  

I wanted to write about Benjamin Netanyahu's speech to Congress last week, but that really got me down.  I think that the standing ovations have got to stop.  It's ridiculous.  The Republicans stood for the story of Purim!  Really?  That's how predictable the standing ovations have become, but that particular one was so dumb.  The story of Queen Esther and Haman?  Standing O???????????  Netanyahu's speech was thoughtful and moving.  I am not criticizing the words, but I do criticize the timing.  Would have been far less controversial if it had happened after the Israel elections.  It lessened its impact and the mechanical applause didn't help.  And honestly, I was afraid to tackle this subject head on.  Emotions are so high about Israel and people see things in black or white.  I don't have the facility of language to attack this, but I do know that nothing is black and white.  Everyone has skin in the game.  Everyone has their own perspective on every angle.  There are always back room deals that we never know about.  We have friends in "enemy" countries because of many reasons: oil, land, security, etc.  Nothing is simple.  The only thing I do know...Israel must continue to exist for the Jewish people.  That's it.  How we accomplish that is far less clear.

I posted my delight at the beginning of daylight savings time on Facebook.  I got some heat for that, though many others agreed with me.  I know that John Oliver ripped DST to shreds on Sunday night's show.  All I know is that I like and need sunlight and daylight.  After this winter, more than ever. So if we don't "Fall back," would it still happen?  I know that no one likes mornings to be dark, but I love that Sunday evening the sun was still shining at 6:12pm and the sky was blue.  I don't really care how we get there.

This is a mish-mash.  My head has been swirling.  Though I haven't posted in a week, my mind never turns off.  Putting things together is getting harder.  I don't want to be Debbie Downer.

Sidebars:  The Voice is the best television.  The judges are so much more than that.  Even those singers that don't make it on the show, get valuable critiques to help them move forward and maybe return to the show. The Bachelor ended last night.  Chris Soules picked Whitney Bischoff.  I have claimed that whomever gets picked in the end would never make it.  I may be wrong.  After last night's finale, Whitney may be willing to throw all her accomplishments away and become a farm wife and mother in the middle of nowhere, Iowa.  If you're not DVRing the Graham Norton Show on BBCAmerica on Saturday nights, you are truly missing the best talk show on the air.  Give it a go.  You will not be sorry.  Ditto for John Oliver on Sunday night's on HBO.  Did you see the news item that two California twenty- something women were arrested in Rome because they carved their initials in the Roman Colisseum???!!!!  Another National embarrassment. Throw away the key. Take away their passports. There are so many more things I want to discuss but, I will save for another day.  Get outside, take a walk, take a breath.

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