Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Well, Bless Your Heart....

      Bless your heart. Living in the South, you can get away with saying nearly anything if you follow it up with a , "Bless your heart". I have such a love/hate relationship with that phrase.  Love it if it's directed towards someone else.  Hate it if it's directed towards me. I learned that firsthand last Friday. 

      That afternoon, I had to make a run to Publix, my favorite grocery store.  I love going to the grocery store.  Ryan and I usually go together, but he was at work and I needed a few things right away.  I feel almost "nekkid" if I walk into Publix without him.  Sadly, just about everyone who works there knows us.  Ryan especially...he tends to stand out in a crowd a little more than I do :)  We walk in and the Meat Manager comes over and slaps Ryan on the back, "Hey!  Big Man!  How's it goin'?!" I love it.  I love that my sweet Ryan makes friends everywhere he goes.  Anyhow, I already felt somewhat out of sorts waltzing through Publix without "Big Man" by my side that afternoon.  I had my two littlest ones buckled in the cart and I was deciding what butter to buy when a sweet little old lady pushed her cart over to me.
      "What beautiful little girls you have!" she said.  I thanked her and then she dropped a bomb on me.
        "Are they excited for the new baby?"  I was totally confused.  Baby?  What baby?  I even glanced at my cart to see if I had given birth to an infant since arriving at the store.  I told you I was feeling out sorts, so who knows what I could've done in those first five minutes, browsing the butter.  I must've looked like a confused puppy because I cocked my head to the side and just stared at her blankly.  Then the realization hit me like a ton of bricks.
        "Oh, I'm not pregnant," I said softly, partly because I didn't want to embarrass her and partly because I didn't want to embarrass myself.  This sweet old lady looked as if she were about to cry.
       "Oh! I'm so sorry! I just...I thought...your blouse...well, bless your heart."  I couldn't help but laugh.  She put her hand on my arm and kept apologizing.  I kept laughing.  She kept trying to explain why she thought I was pregnant.  I kept laughing. 

      "It must be your blouse, dear.  Oh, bless your heart.  I do apologize."  I told her it was okay and I do have what I like to call "permanent baby belly", since I've had four children.  Well, that struck a chord with her.  She also had four children.  I learned all about them.  And their spouses.  And their children.  And her husband is a preacher.  And they always go grocery shopping together (just like us!) She said she could tell I was a Christian by the way I handled her thinking I was pregnant.  I took that as a compliment :)  And she is also one of four children.  And they are all in their 80's.  And she turned 85 on April 4th.  After a few minutes, she said she must go because she could see that her husband was getting a little wild in the potato chip aisle.  She squeezed my hand and said, "You're so sweet.  I do hope we meet again."  I said I hoped the same, and I turned to walk down the ice cream aisle.  I had a coupon for the best ice cream bars on the planet.  They are a little pricey, so when I have a coupon, I have to buy a box.  Just as I reached in the freezer case and pulled out my beloved bars, my new friend was looking at me, half ways smiling.

      "Okay," I said, "This is really why I have 'permanent baby belly'."  She laughed and gave me a look that I KNOW said, "Well, bless your heart."



Thursday, April 4, 2013


Someday, you'll miss this, so I'm told
Try not to wish it away
Too soon it seems your babies grow old
And you'll be wanting back these days
Someday, you'll miss the growing belly
The swollen ankles, the tiny kicks
Constant cravings for peanut butter and jelly
And feeling like your body's taken 1000 licks
Someday, you'll miss that newborn cry
Jarring you out of a deep, dead sleep
The long day that blurs into night
And being so tired, you just want to weep
Someday, you'll miss sitting, rocking her in the chair
Feeling so unproductive, laundry piled high
Forgetting the last time you washed your hair
Feeling like every sign of youth has waved bye-bye
Someday, you'll miss diapers, teething, spit-up
Car seats, high chairs, and first steps
Pureed peas, pacifiers, sippy cups
And wondering if as a mother, you are inept
Someday, you'll miss the tiny sound
Of footsteps creeping down the hall
"Get back in bed!" you stand your ground
But would that extra cuddle have hurt, after all?
Someday, you'll miss running around town
Dropping off, picking up, and bringing to
Swimming upstream, about to drown
Feeling like your whole life is a zoo
Somedays, I feel like that "someday"
Is so far down the road, out of my reach
But somedays that "someday" feels not so far away
"Not yet!" I think "So much is left to teach!"
So hold my hand, yours in mine feels so small
I wish I could halt this swift-moving time
But I'll have my memories, I'll cherish them all
And someday remember when you were all mine