Archive for September 24th, 2006

While You Have The Chance…

My dad’s first cousin, Libba, passed away yesterday at the age of 86. She had taken a bad fall earlier in the week and I knew that the outlook for her was probably not so good. I did go out and get a card to send to her as soon as I heard about her fall. I filled it out, signed it, put her name on the envelope and had every intention of looking her address up, getting a stamp and putting the card in the mail. It’s not like I’ve been extra busy now that I have plenty of time during the day.
This is not a relative that I was very close to, in terms of communicating regularly or being close to her when I was growing up. In fact, the first time I remember meeting Libba and her wonderful husband, Frank, was at Dad’s memorial service in 1992. I was so touched at the time that they drove up from their home in Chattanooga and they were just the nicest, warmest people. I instantly felt bonded to them.
Libba’s father and my grandfather were brothers. They were very, very close. They suffered through a difficult childhood with an abusive father and up until they were old men and as long as they were able to, they made regular visits, in spite of the many miles between Chattanooga, TN and San Antonio, Texas. They were tight. They made a pact that whoever died first would go to the other’s grave and “christen” it. Use your imagination as to what that meant. My grandfather followed up on that pact after Uncle Homah died in 1973.

I think the closeness between the brothers and the immense love those two had for each other is what made me feel like I knew Libba and the times I was able to visit with her were very special moments. I had the same experience the first time I met her daughters. Their personalities, sense of humor were just like the girls in my family. It had to be cause of the Brothers. Had to be.
I wish I could’ve spent more time with Libba. I last saw her two summers ago. She was the epitome of what one would think a lady would be. She had four wonderful children, all extremely succesful people (one son was a dentist for one of the President’s even), a number of grandkids (also high achivers). Her husband, Frank, is one I will one day do a post about. He was a Prisoner of War during World War II for several years and his escape was something that would make a killer movie. Great people.
Just another reminder to follow up on those stirrings and not let them slide.

Times Haven’t Changed

Two thirteen year old girls…one in 2006, one in 1982.

Being the mother of a nearly 15 year old and now a 13 year old, I hear lots of interesting stuff. Just when I find myself at my wits end in dealing with them, something happens that reminds me of when I was that age and that we’re not totally living on different planets.
There has been a rumor floating around My Space that Ben Savage, younger brother of Fred, known for his role on Boy Meets World was killed in a car accident. My son tells me last night “Mom…Corey Matthews died.” (Who the hell is Corey Matthews? Ah, the character on Boy). Then, this morning, the daughter says “Momm-eh….Ben Savage died.” Even 8 year old #2 got in on the action.
Apparently, Ben Savage is alive and well. I am glad. I was always partial to Big Brother Fred, who was on The Wonder Years as that precious Kevin Arnold.
Why is it kids like to make up stuff like this? It’s nothing new. When I was in 7th grade (same grade my daughter is in now) the big rumor that went around was that Belinda Carlisle, from the Go Go’s, had overdosed and died. We didn’t have the internet then and I have no clue how it got started. I was so relieved Belinda wasn’t dead because I loved me some Go Go’s.
This whole Ben Savage thing reminds me of how crappy middle school can be for another reason. 7th grade, I had this thing all year for Andrew Savage. I mean…I dug him. Finally, when summer came, we got to talking on the phone a little bit. (to me, that was serious business. He was probably just being nice) Then, I went off to church camp and my best friend moved in on my man. I laugh now and say “That’s 13 year olds for you” but boy, at the time, I was crushed. Not so much at him, but, at my best friend. She was this beautiful, blue-eyed, blonde and I ……was not. She had no trouble getting the attention of the male set.
Oddly enough, this best friend, who I had been friends with since we were 4….we were never close again. Maybe that was just the regular course of things, but, I always thought it had to do with that stupid boy, who was, like, not all that…..We did resume communication though and even though I haven’t seen her for years, we do email from time to time.
Oh no…I’m surrounded by Middle School drama and I’m reverting. It all just shows how with parenting, you get to relive your Sesame Street phase and your Awkward Phase.