Monday, March 29, 2010

Kathy's song

I love making playlists. Music is such a big part of the stories that play out in my life. Music walks hand in hand with my memories..haunting me and comforting me...

So I promised a friend a "mixed tape" with some great tunes, and as I was perusing my itunes library, I was reminded of Kathy's Song by Simon and Garfunkel. It's a simple song with brilliant lyrics.

I used to sing it to Grant when he was a baby, which was only ten years ago, but feels lifetimes away. I remember being a young new mother, sleep deprived but still wide eyed and anxious, and absolutely in love with every waking, and sleeping breath of my beautiful new baby boy. Those were days when I still lived in illusions about how life goes as planned... unaware of how much I did not know about just about everything... I was 23 years old, and completely sure about just about everything.

Motherhood has made me a completely different person, and each child has made me a completely different mother. I don't sing to Grant anymore and when I sing along in the car now he begs me to stop. I never could listen to this song without choking up a little bit, even in my most guarded phases. I am not a girl who typically cries, although I have finally softened up a little in my thirties. There is a movie scene in "The Holiday" with Cameron Diaz where she is trying to cry because she knew she should be crying, and I have done this myself, many times. Music is one of the few things that can really hit my very few vulnerable places. A happy song always makes me want to dance, and a sad song can literally take my breath away... that ping and straining in my heart universal for any mood that great music sows out of my memories. Listening to Kathy's Song last night I could feel Grant in my arms, rocking him back to sleep, just the two of us.

This one's for Grant, even though he would not think it's the first bit cool. Cheers to all the young, new parents out there watching their babies sleep, drink bottles, poop and smile in awe. It doesnt last long!

Kathy's Song

I hear the drizzle of the rain
Like a memory it falls
Soft and warm continuing
Tapping on my roof and walls

And from the shelter of my mind
Through the window of my eyes
I gaze beyond the rain-drenched streets
To England where my heart lies

My mind's distracted and diffused
My thoughts are many miles away
They lie with you when you're asleep
And kiss you when you start your day

And a song I was writing is left undone
I don't know why I spend my time
Writing songs I can't believe
With words that tear and strain to rhyme

And so you see I have come to doubt
All that I once held as true
I stand alone without beliefs
The only truth I know is you

And as I watch the drops of rain
Weave their weary paths and die
I know that I am like the rain
There but for the grace of you go I

Sunday, March 7, 2010

the story of my boy and his dog

For Griffins 6th birthday I bought him a rescue beagle named Amy. Amy was from somewhere in North Georgia, and "housebroken". My friend Brian worked in a vets office and warned me to do research on all the dogs I was considering...I told him nonsense....this dog was the dog for us. I had spent a solid 30 minutes with her outside of Petsmart, walking the parking lot. She was by far the saddest, cutest dog there. My dad was sold on a similar beaglish dog that was a little more mature..but Amy came home with us. We tied a big red bow around her neck, drove Griffin over and had him wait on the front porch while we brough her out. She immediately connected with him, lovingly licking his sweet little face. He patted her head gently and licked her head back to welcome her to our family in her language. It was one of the sweetest moments as a parent I will ever witness. His love for that dog was instant and remains permanently imposed in the back of my brain, everytime I think I have had enough of her antics. He fondly named her Ashlee after a pretty older blond girl he thought very highly of.

Ashlee has been quite a test of patience, and if it were not for Griffin's die hard loyalty to her, she would be long gone.

Ashlee in Griffin's own words:
"Ashlee is very nice and she doesn't bite. She needs a lot of love, and loves to meet new people. let her lick you, just do it, don't get scared just let her. She's not going to hurt you. She does it cause she loves every person in this world pretty much. and she likes to sometimes sniff, that's pretty much all the time. and don't let her slip free from a lead or have a crack in a fence, because if she runs out it's gonna be hard to catch her, cause she kind of jogs a little bit and then stops and then jogs a little bit and then stops. its kinda like deja vu'. you have to get her in the car. and she's very nice. and dont let her get caught up under your feet because you could possibly trip. she likes to sniff in the direction where the other dogs are. thats usually what she does. otherwise, she's down with us having fun.she always snuggles with me, and licks me when i'm feeling down. Ashlee will run from sara. she is perfect for little boys that really love dogs. her head is brown. her ears are long. her back is black, her neck is white, her belly is white also. she's got beautiful brown eyes and a cute little wagging tale. and never leave legos out on the floor, her tail can demolish them and make them go all over the floor! and that is all." -Griffin Mark

She was always kind and gentle with the kids, but had a dark undercurrent of mischief as soon as you looked away. She got settled in and began stealing our clothes and toys and stuffed animals to make tunnels and burrows under the beds. She unleashed her howling bark, which she relentlessly wielded for hours and hours on end at the most inopportune times. She even recieved a barking ticket. An actual barking ticket. She dug up our back yard with a million little holes, peed EVERYWHERE, and savored the bathroom trash on a regular basis, and took off on exploring sprees everytime the front door opened. I hated her. Griffin would get very upset when I would call her "stupid dog" as I was steam cleaning pee, or chasing her down the block. We discussed getting rid of her very seriously many times, but Griffin always won out in the end.

We crated her for over a year, and finally she is broken of all her terrible habits. She is not a disciplined dog, she licks and jumps on visitors, and she lays around on the furniture. However, she obliges Sara's games of constant provocation and chase, and rough ear pulls and head smacks without reacting. The warmth of her ears and softness of her coat snuggled up tight have been much needed medicine many times the past few months. We have all grown to need her in our own unique ways. She is still especially connected to Griffin as if she knows she was brought into our family to fill a special need for him. He is a tough little guy and there are times that even as his mom, I am at a loss about how to help him. At times she is the only spirit that can get through to him and bring him back to himself. I have writing, Grant has coaches and being the class clown, Sara has the attention of everyone....and Griffin has Ashlee.