Grandmas Know Best

parenthood.jpeg[5 minute read]

The grandma in Parenthood can do no wrong. She is a solid lady. Wise and idyllic in her presence and words. The roller coaster monologue is award worthy for life’s best lessons given by fictional grandmas. Seeing her makes me miss mine. Times are tough. But aren’t they always? Uncertain times undoubtedly make us yearn for times when life was simpler and the biggest concern was if we would kick the can before being tagged.   If you were lucky enough to know your own, grandmas and grandpas forever hold a special place in our hearts. So, in honor of that…

Dear Meems,

17 years. Wow. You’ve been gone that long? Really?

In an instant, I can still hear your deep throaty chuckle and see the twinkle in your eyes as they squint with laughter. I smell the kibbie baking in the oven and see your wooden “ditty” spoon sitting there just waiting for me to give it a reason for a quick whack on my butt from being too fresh.  I hear the stairs squeaking as you head to your study to really nail down this “email thing”. I sneak another fudge stripes cookie from the plastic avocado green cookie jar and throw a satisfied smile at the ditty spoon. I slide my pinkie finger perfectly through the whole of this chocolate deliciousness, slowly nibbling around it with the same amount of joy that comes from peeling dried glue off of my hand. I hear your lighter click and the smoky wave of Kent Gold 100’s makes its way to my nose.  I smile knowing that soon enough a frustrated grunt will be following in its wake and a fresh pack of cigs will be nabbed from the freezer. More power to you for attempting the computer with blue haired indignation that fed your determination. Speaking of, the last few years have brought major love and determination in our kitchen. Who would’ve thought that cooking could actually give me peace of mind? Bonus: anytime I reach for a pot or pan I am instantly transported to your driveway for our New Year’s tradition of banging them over our heads like two wild animals. The hell with the neighbors! They may have been seeing red but we were seeing nothing but the glowing stars above our heads. Even now, a simple flip up of my head and those stars give me an immediate sense of warmth and protection. They let me know that you’re okay.  Silly right? To hope that you’re okay. Of course, you are. Know how I know? When I speak to you, you listen. I hear you. Now. I see you. Now. I love you – even more. Now.  “To thine own self be true,” you would say. I believe that more and more the older I am. And yes, when you suggest that I lighten up, I do listen up. But of course, you already know that.(Wink, wink.)

Oh, Meems. Thank you for the loving strength and the sincerest curiosity you continue to deliver to me in this uncertain world.
All of my love,

Kristy
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(The peak of my glue peeling stage. Me (L), Meems (C), Big Sissy (R) )


Parenthood (1989, dir Ron Howard) The Buckmans are a midwestern family all dealing with their lives: estranged relatives, raising children, pressures of the job, and learning to be a good parent and spouse.  

Karen: I happen to LIKE the roller coaster, okay? As far as I’m concerned, your grandmother is brilliant.

Gil: Yeah, if she’s so brilliant, why is she sitting in our NEIGHBOR’S CAR?

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In Good Company

in-good-companyYesterday I may have distracted my 1 1/2-year-old with a bulk size bag of goldfish so that I could binge watch Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath . A beer may just happen to appear in my hand when I wash my floors in the middle of the afternoon. My car may miraculously take the long way home from work so that I can blare Sister Christian on a loop before returning to reality. My Friday nights may consist of hour long marathons of iTunes movie trailers. My mind may overanalyze to the point of combustion when I’m feeling vulnerable or threatened.

What’s for certain? I always know that I’m in good company. I always know that one of my incredible girlfriends will join me and not judge me for my moments of humanness. I don’t have to be afraid of being seen (or invisible for that matter). With my girlfriends, there is zero fear of feeling like a complete moron. Zero fear. That’s pretty freaking incredible. My good fortune is to have gathered a lively array of women nationwide who fill me up no matter what mood I’m in.  People say you’re lucky if you have one good, true friend. Then, I’ve hit the tribal karma jackpot with an overflowing colorful cup of grounded, strong, hilarious, kind-hearted and real real real girlfriends. My definition of real may be completely different than your definition of real. That’s awesome! That makes it more REAL. Whatever and whoever lets your freak flag fly with complete liberation and straight up relief – is REAL. That’s it.

It is all about the company you keep. It is about taking an honest look at who’s in your life and realizing if they are helping or hurting it. It’s hard. Really hard. It’s also the biggest gift you could ever give yourself and the rest of us.

“Sometimes it’s not about getting ahead…it’s about getting a life.” This is the tagline for the 2004 underrated Dennis Quaid movie, In Good Company

I say: sometimes it’s not about getting a HEAD… it’s about getting a life.

Sometimes I need to get out of my head to really get into my life. I need to give my mind a break and remind myself that the people who are in my life are choosing to be there for a reason. I need to give myself a little kudos (or if needed, a straight talking to) about who I’m surrounding myself with and then… get on with it. Once we all do this, as the kids say: shit is about to get real. Suddenly, wow! There’s more space in our heads for playful pranks and purposeful projects. The fire in our bellies turn fears into “Why the hell not’s?” The petty, clingy and self-sabotaging thoughts about people or …people (it’s always about people, right?) begin to fade away. The guilt, jealousy, and resentment? There’s no room (or much less) anymore – because you’re shifting your focus on what you want instead of what you don’t want.

More of the “in good company” peeps, please.

Then…

(Cue: tinkling wind chimes.)

…you find yourself in even BETTER company. Yes, that’s how it happens. Yes, it’s free. Yes, it’s possible.

And yes, I may have been reminded of In Good Company because of a late-night solo dance party to its theme song: Peter Gabriel’s Solsbury Hill.  And yes, I may have, just may have, even spent 15 minutes on the phone with my husband’s childhood friend convincing (convincing? slurring? who’s to say?) him to download Solsbury Hill immediately because “once you hear the first few notes you feel like you’re on a cloud.”

Cue: head drop and crickets.

Sorry, Roc.