Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mommy's Day

Here are two poems Kate wrote when she was in second or third grade. They still warm my heart and bring a smile.


Moms will walk across the desert
to help you sleep.
They will swim over the ocean
to help you not to weep.
They will climb a mountain tall
to pick you up when you fall.
Moms are wonderful people
who we will always remember and love.

Mommy’s Bed

Sometimes when it’s late at night,
I have a terrible fright.
I grab my blankies, go up the stairs
and say goodbye to my teddy bears.
I crawl into my mommy’s bed
and cover up my sleepy head.
The pillows are so fluffy–it’s not at all stuffy.
They sheets are so smooth that
you can easily snooze.
“Go away!” I say to my sleeping brother –
this is my mother!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

To All the Second Mothers

As Mother's Day approaches, I want to say thank you to all "second mothers" -- those amazing women who help us raise our children. The women who are there to comfort, guide, direct and discipline when we are not. What would we ever do without them?

This is something I wrote for Ellen McGraw many years ago. Ellen was a second mother to Kate when she was very small. Her home was a safe harbor, a place of love, a treasure chest of joy.

To Ellen and all other Second Mothers – Happy Mother’s Day and thanks from the bottom of my heart!

Second Mother

You wipe the tears and give
the hugs.
You feed the body and
the spirit.
You hear the laughter
and the cries.
You see the potential and
cherish the child.

A second mother,
a treasured link
in the eternal circle
of Kate's life.

Love knows no boundaries
or genetics or biology.
Who says a child needs
only one mother!
Ah, you have been
Second Mother to many.

And you are loved and cherished,
valued and prayed for,
counted on and cared for
by many, many
Second Children.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Vision of Life

Let me see life through the eyes of Christ.
Let me see people with eyes of unwavering love--
unconditional love.

Let me see the world through the eyes of a child.
Let me find wonder in the smallest flower,
the common oak tree, the evening sunset.

Help me to see each living creature as a miracle--
precious and irreplaceable. A piece of a beautiful and
complex puzzle -- one I don’t need to understand or analyze,
but simply enjoy and cherish.

dblack ‘99

Monday, May 4, 2009

I Love Four Year Olds

I love four year olds. I love their enthusiasm and their confidence.

In Sunday School, Sister Watson told the kids she was going to teach them about something that was sort of complicated. And it was a big word. She said she didn't think most of them would know what it was --"ordinance".

Joshua is four years old. He started popping up and down in his seat and raising his hand high above his head saying, "Oh, I know. I know!" He was practically falling out of his chair with his exuberance. "I know! I know! We put ordinance all over our Christmas tree." I love four year olds.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

There's No Glamour in Those Shots!

I took Kate to Glamour Shots at Tyson's Corner today to get her senior picture taken. I was stunned to see some of the 4x6 foot portraits they chose to hang in the gallery. One was a 40-something year old woman facing the camera and on all fours donning a red teddy, breasts spilling out. The second photo was of a woman about 8 months pregnant. She was standing up in a fancy living room with her blouse unbuttoned below her breasts and her huge naked stomach bursting forth.

Don't get me wrong-- I think it's very cool when a woman wears sexy things for her sweetheart-- I just think it should stay between the two of them. I think pregnant women are beautiful. In fact, I have pictures of my big bare belly when I was hugely pregnant -- but I don't really think strangers would find it very attractive.

And wouldn't you just die if you were a teenager shopping with your girlfriends and walked past Glamour Shots just to see huge photo of your mom in her red "come hither" teddy? How humiliating would that be? What do you think those women were thinking when they said, "Sure, please do hang that photo of me (in your front window where thousands of strangers will see it)." Seriously, I had nearly three hours to sit and contemplate that question, and I still can't come up with a single answer.

Honestly, I was afraid to look at the proofs of Kate when her photo session was over. Luckily, the pictures were lovely and worth every uncomfortable minute of sitting with belly lady and teddy chick.

p.s. I won't even tell you about the big photo of the goth ballerina -- and I am not kidding.