Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Being a Mom!

I don't know how many people are aware what a "girlie girl" I am. When I was a child I was actually considered "prissy". Wearing curls in my hair replete with ribbons and bows, and always in dresses I spent my time pretending I was a mommy. I had many babies with names like "Belonk" and "Golanda" who were always dressed to the "nines" especially when they attended tea parties with me. I couldn't wait to be a Mommy for real.
Married at 18 I was anxious to start my family but Marque wasn't born until I was 22. It never really occured to me that I might have a boy because girls outnumbered 4 to 1 in my family and 10 to 1 in Bud's family. I actually asked them to double-check when they announced "You have a boy!" It wasn't that I was disappointed, I wasn't, just surprised! That was about the only surprise I had because I had done my homework on being a mother. Little Raymond Marquist, aka Marc, aka Mark, aka Marque, aka Q was so easy. Maybe it was because he was the first, he was organized and in charge from the get-go. I remember when he was about 18 months old he was so frustrated with the kids I babysat for because they didn't put the toys away in the orderly fashion he required. He would stomp his foot, rearrange them and then scowl at the other little kids for their sloppiness. To this day Marque likes to take care of me rather than the other way around.
Being there was only 20 months between Markie and my second child I was hoping it was a boy. James David was born and I knew they would be so close! They are--now that they are 36 and 38. They couldn't have been more opposite as they were growing up. They didn't fight often because they didn't share any interests, toys, clothes, or music that they would fight over. Jimmy scared us right at first because he didn't grow. Poor little guy went through so many medical tests and lost so much of his growth until they finally figured it all out. He caught up very quickly and thrived. Everyone was in love with him from the moment they saw him. Jimmy didn't waste much time trying to do something, he waited until he could do it well the first time!
Coming from a large family (7 kids) I wanted to have bunches of kids, but my body had other ideas. So I waited for 4 1/2 years before risking another pregnancy and then I had my 3rd son. Maybe God was afraid I would name a daughter "Belonk" or "Golonda"! I think I would have been disappointed if my third and last child was a girl, but maybe I just adjusted to that version of thought because I grew to love my role of mother of sons! Scott was easy! He entertained himself or he was entertained by his older brothers. I remember going to a Tupperware party at the neighbors. Scott was just a year and he sat quietly on a blanket the whole time. When he started to school the teachers always told me that "all the kids love Scotty". He was and still is a good blend of his older brothers and both of them got along so well with their little brother.
So I was the mother of boys and I learned to curtail the flowers and hearts to my doodling rather than my decorating. Soccer became my favorite pasttime over the years. Every year I was room mother for at least one of the kids classes if not all of them, and I put in my time on the PTA as well. Anything having to do with my chosen career of motherhood was right up my alley. I even took appropriate breaks from being a Mom to go out with friends, or my husband because I was told that it was better for my kids to be fresh!
One of the things I also did as a mother is teach my sons that I wanted, adored, expected "mushy" Mothers Day cards. Come on, what little boy is going to know that on their own???? It's only fair that if I put aside my "girlie girl" to be the mother of three active boys, that they put aside their "manly man" for their mommy once a year! They are so good! Scotty even notates on the front of the envelope that he gets extra points because it's pink!
Now I have my girls too! Two beautiful perfect (really they are perfect!) daughters-in-love, and two little granddaughters. I have the best of all worlds. Every year, and this year I received heartfelt messages, and so much love stuffed into cards, notes, gifts, food, and flowers all tell me that Motherhood is the magic I always knew it to be! It is the absolutely best career choice I could have made!
What? Do you think it's because of all the "booty" I haul in at Mothers Day........not bad.....but it's really because of Marque, Jim, Scott, Sarah, Samantha, Hailey and Mady!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Pile of Pooh

The other day an old friend and I sat in Carrows discussing life....and stuff. This wasn't an in-ordinary circumstance because we get together somewhat frequently and chat until the restaurant closes for the evening. But there were differences this time.

We are two card-carrying "Pollyanna's", "see the glass half-full", optimistic, happy people who always have smiles on our faces. The world will never see our woe! After a few moments of telling each other all the GOOD news in our lives we tenderly edged into the "not so blessed" moments. As is our nature we would pull it back just as quickly trying to gulp our words back into our mouths. Wouldn't want a cloud over our heads, would we?

We came up with an analogy. (My kids know how much I love analogies.)

We have a pile of pooh, with an awful odor, but never mind we immediately throw a nice sod blanket over it, and then plant beautiful flowers on top. Now we don't have to acknowledge our pile of pooh, and no one else has to see it either.

We laughed and laughed when we saw our problems as a pile of pooh, and our ability to rapidly decorate and cover up. It was really liberating. Now we are trying to recognize the pooh for what it is and remove it, shovel by shovel, before we beautify the area.

It's not that I worry what other people will think of me that makes me cover things up, it's that I don't want to see them myself. Whether from my nature, or my childhood, or out of my faith I have always been good at seeing the "brighter" side. My mottos are "Bloom where you're planted." "If you're given lemons, make lemonade." "Make an attitude adjustment." "Look at things from a different perspective." "See the glass half full". "Count your blessings". I'm extremely good at counting my blessings...they are so plentiful....and I feel ungrateful if I whine, or grumble a bit. But seriously folks I do have a "pile of pooh" that is gets pretty stinky in spite of my efforts to plant beautiful flowers. When I told Jimmy about my analogy he said "Flowers planted on pooh are pretty stinky".

So, my friend and I have challenged each other to acknowledge the pile of pooh, see what it's made of, feel it, smell it, remove it and then plant beautiful flowers so everything will be as God created it!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Broken Dreams

Probably when I was about five years old I decided what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wanted to be married and have a family. While going to school, trying to make the grades, taking career tests, preparing for college I still knew that my career would be a homemaker. There was nothing demeaning about my choice. There couldn't be a loftier position to attain, or a happier one.

My parents set me up good. If they had problems or frustrations I didn't see them. My mom loved my Dad and my Dad adored my Mom and that was all there was to it. When they danced they looked into each others eyes with dewy eyes and created romance as they glided across the floor. As Dad would leave for work they would share a kiss.... two quick pecks and one long. I can just see my little five year old self swept up with the magic of the whole thing.

Imagine those same parents being anxious and frustrated when their 18 year old daughter isn't focused on the college degree and career but instead moves headlong into marriage with her brain filled with all the romantic notions they put there. But, there is absolutely no doubt, no doubt at all that when I was at that little alter in Las Vegas, I saw stars in his eyes too. Actually I was concerned that I couldn't match the depth of love that I saw in his eyes. We were off into the wonderland of marriage.

41 years, 4 months, 5 days, 3 amazing sons, 2 wonderful daughters in law, 2 beautiful granddaughters, a plethora of friends, a million kisses, two million "I love you's", several challenges met, a couple dozen trials overcome, and we split.

How the heck is that possible? We're the Trosper's! Nothing can pull us down. But it did. There were no horrible heart wrenching arguments, no accusations and pointing fingers, just the slow demise of a dream, a career, a lifestyle.

Who am I now? If I'm not a Mrs. what do I hang my hat on? How do you go about re-inventing yourself at 60?