November 3, 2012

The Day of the Dead

My kids have always loved Halloween, and this year I was relieved that it wasn't especially traumatizing.  Last year was a bit creepy because looking at lots of dead people with blood and guts spilling everywhere made us think about our own special dead person.  That really sucked.  We had walked into the big Halloween Superstore like we do every year, but last year we ended up running out after only a few seconds.  None of us could handle it.  Not even me.  It was a total ninja surprise attack.  Big darling was wringing his hands, the little ones were crying, and I was buckling them back into their seats as fast as I could, my own hands trembling and my heart pounding.  What the fuck had just happened?

This year was better.  Little darling was dressed as the po-lice.  Or as my niece described, “A nark.”  He literally ran from house to house, completely manic, high on sugar, just high on life.  You couldn’t help but crack up at him.  He was hilarious, and happy.  He mostly is those things, to be honest. He’s such a blessing to me.

My niece and I had our 2nd Annual pumpkin carving contest the night before.  Big darling selected a Jesuit Blue Jay for me to carve, because he intends to go to high school there. 

My niece showed up here with two selections.  Super Mario and Tinkerbell.  She tried to get away with carving Tinkerbell because Mario ‘looked hard.’  The boys just laughed.  No way in hell 3 boys were going to let her get away with that.  Are you kidding?  My kids won’t even dry off with a pink beach towel.  I don’t care if its 25 degrees and they are soaking wet.  They will wait for you to go get another towel.  I once bought a pink raft on purpose, so they would stay off it.  They got on it after a couple hours, saying it was “mommy’s raft, but they were just using it.”  I have no clue what makes them fear pink more than zombies.  I should buy a pink comforter on sale and put it on their bed for punishment when they are bad.  Now there’s a great idea.

We lit the chiminea and had dinner outside, and carved our pumpkins while they ran wild in the yard.   Funny saying of the night:  Me to little darling, sternly "We don't roll over burritoes with a scooter!"   You guys can judge the winner.  Our judges here are the boys so they always declare me the winner.  I had totally forgotten about this, but last year, they were hesitant to tell my niece that she didn’t win, so middle darling placed 3 soccer cones by her pumpkin, and put a toy fire truck next to mine.  Then he announced that the person with the cones did not win.  The pumpkin closest to the fire truck won.  We got a good chuckle out of his diplomacy.

This year, we finished carving and I headed to the fridge to get a beer.  As I walked away, I called out, “So who won?”  I turned around two seconds later to see that the soccer cones were already around Mario, and my Blue Jay had a toy helicopter near it.  I spit my beer and cracked up till my stomach hurt.  I had totally forgotten they had done that last year.  Big darling is a sly, funny boy.  He reminds me so much of his daddy.  That is a total Dave move, to not say anything but just do something quietly funny. 

They danced in the kitchen on Halloween night until 10 pm, and I let them all stay home from school the next day.  We wrote notes to Dave and put them inside helium balloons, then released them at the cemetery.  We watched them fly higher and higher and higher until they just disappeared.  I was a little nervous that something terrible would happen….like they wouldn’t fly or we would see them pop…but that didn’t happen.  They looked like teeny tiny stars up there…until they were just no more.

I worry that I’ve confused little darling, as I have no clue what exactly he comprehends.  Through my choking tears, and with my dark sunglasses on, I tried to explain to him in a trembling voice that daddy wasn’t ‘really’ going to get the note.  It’s just a symbol.  A 3 year old doesn’t have a clue what a fucking symbol is.  Clearly I don’t know what I’m doing…but my intentions are good.

We had a nice lunch outside at a restaurant afterwards.  Little darling announced in front of some other moms I barely know that “mommy farted.”  He shouted it twice for good measure.  I have no clue why the little asshole said that, because I didn’t fart.  Of course I made it worse, by crying out, “No I didn’t! Why would you say that?” and then looking right at them to see if they heard him, which of course they did.

I was starting to like Dave a little bit again.  Starting to feel nostalgic for him and all.  But this morning I woke up to find that a raccoon popped the inflatable ring around the pool, which is what keeps it from collapsing and spilling 10,000 gallons of saltwater onto my grass.  It hasn’t collapsed yet, but my attempt at fixing it while 10,000 mosquitoes bit my legs was unsuccessful.  So I’m a little perturbed at him again…although he won’t know it when he gets my balloon.
These are pumpkins that Dave carved one year, when we only had one kid and apparently lots of idle time.

PS: You can't comment as "anonymous" anymore, because apparently "anonymous" is synonymous with "Sri Lankan asshole spammer."  I couldn't take it anymore. If you don't have a usable ID to comment, just do it on the FB page.


  1. We wonder if little ones understand 'symbolic' gestures--they don't know why but they feel it, I think. The emotion comes through. I've recently had lots of time to remember and discuss the past with my now 37 year old son-he didn't even remember the things I thought might have traumatized him, but there are other things I really don't remember at all that apparently scarred him for life!! We all just do the best that we can! BTW that shot of your boys dancing in the kitchen--priceless!! I love it! My prayers and thoughts are with you-even if you DID fart-LOL!!

  2. It sounds like everyone has healed at least a little bit in the last year. What a great idea to do the balloons! Those moments of "closure" (whatever that is) help us move forward, even if just a little bit or only for a little while. You're not screwing any of them up, trust me. You're teaching them how to live with loss, fear and disappointment, and they will be great men someday because of it. I enjoyed hearing that you started to like Dave a little bit again. It's another sign of a step forward. Just yesterday, I cursed Dale again for everything because our son is now dating a girl and it just seems like he should be here to help out, to give advice, to tease him about not getting her pregnant ;) He's missing it and it pisses me off. So it's one step forward, two steps back sometimes. Just keep walking.

  3. Put my kids through a fairly acrimonious divorce with all the assorted traumatic trappings. What do they remember and feared about that time? Me telling them in a TOTALLY KIDDING way (when they were misbehaving) that I was going to run off and join the circus. You never know what sticks.

  4. I have always wanted to believe that our loved ones DO get our notes that we send them.... I mean, it's kinda like fairies and unicorns.... We KNOW they aren't 'real' but we like to believe in them because it makes us feel better!!! So why not let them believe that he is getting them! I don't think it's hurting anything! PS.... LOVE the pic of your little one dancin in his undies!!! My lil man is an undie boy too!!!! <3

  5. Look at you getting all fancy with the blog format! Me likey!

    This one gave me some smiles and giggles. I love that you posted pix of the little darlings.