Last night we lost our dear old Daisy Dog. After eating her dinner she got twisted gut and we had to put her down. It leaves a hole in our heart. We will miss her greatly.
She was my first baby.
It has been a long time since I have dated. Well, I don't suppose I ever really dated. Middle school doesn't count. Since moving to Arizona I find myself in the dating scene. With women. Now don't get up in arms, I feel like I am dating moms. In the past I have had friends through school, work or classes that the kids took, or friends that were friends of family. We became friends by our common pursuit, stage of life or location. Here I am starting without those systems in place. Max has an instant connection and group of guys through work but I have been dating. This is how it goes...
First you scope each other out as you drop off the kids at school. You notice each other and then one morning someone actually says, "hi." Then it may be a few more passes before one of you decide to introduce yourself. Then you say "hi" with each others name a few days in a row. Then after the kids are in their room you strike up a conversation that eventually leads to a, "We should get together sometime." You go home and examine your calendars and find a day you can both meet. If they also have a younger child then we meet at the park to chat while the kids play. If not you meet at some other neutral location like a coffee shop while Hank is in preschool. If that date goes well then you are ready to move to the next level in the relationship and have them over to your house.
They come over and your house is spectacularly clean and you pretend like it is always that way. You make sweet treats for the kids and have lots of fruits and vegetables available too. You slowly start to find out how they ended up in the God forsaken desert, a little about their husbands, what they do when they are not volunteering at the school or doing mom chores. If all goes well, she invites you to her house and you get to know them a little better. At some point in the relationship you decide if it is worth investing yourself and to keep dating or cut her loose and vice versa. This is far more difficult than breaking up with some dude that you are never going to see. You will still see her every morning.
When the dating is going well you decide that since you are friends and your kids are friends maybe your husbands could be friends. This is a rare occurrence. We have made it this far in the dating game twice since we have been here. At this point you realize they are either going to be mom only friends or maybe just maybe you could be family friends. Months and months of dating ahead to find out. It is so much work!!
How I long for those easy friendships that just happened. It was a unique time of sharing the struggles of school, being broke, getting pregnant and starting to emerge as true adults. Sharing the growing pains allowed us to bond in a strong way that transcended all the other stuff that gets in the way of just being who you are. It forged bonds that have lasted a decade.
Maybe I am looking for a rebound? I have been on three dates this week alone and got invited to two second dates. Does that mean I am cheating??? :) So much to learn in the dating game.
On this sad anniversary of 9/11 I hope each of us will find time to pause and remember where we were the day America changed. There are few times in our lives where we will vividly remember where we were, what we were doing and how we felt. I was working as a nursing student on an orthopedic floor. I went to ambulate a patient and she was sobbing. I went to her thinking she was in pain from her knee surgery. She grabbed my hand and said, "Oh honey, America has been attacked." She pointed to the TV and together we watched in horror as the twin towers burned. When I got to go home to Hailey who was just 3 months old, I held her and worried about the world she would grow up in. I will always remember the way our country united in those days following. The way God was once again our foundation. The way patriotism erupted. The way we vowed to not let this stop the greatest nation on earth from promising freedom to her citizens. The heroes that gave us hope.
It has been a very hard decade for our country. Bin Laden is finally dead but over six thousand of our soldiers have died in the war on terror. I can only hope that in the next decade we can heal our nation from all of the wounds that have followed 9/11. That we can end the war and bring our soldiers home. That we can heal our economy. That we can remain united, patriotic, and thankful to God without the threat of evil. That the land of the free will still be the greatest place on earth for my children. Today remember the countless people who lost their loved ones. Remember the hole in our hearts that will never be filled. Remember how great American's are. Remember how great God is. Remember we have faith, hope, and love, but the greatest is love.
While I couldn't smell a crisp fall in the air, we all can feel a distinct change. Even if it is only a degree. It is a blessed degree that brings hopes of jeans, maybe even a long sleeve shirt, and the end of the continually running air conditioner. A 99 degree fall. Clearly we have heat exhaustion. No one in their right mind could put 99 degrees and fall in the same sentence. Such is your state of mind in the desert...