• Dear Diary, Saint Motel and rage no more.

    I mentioned on Monday that this has been a really unusual time for my little family, filled with hills and valleys (I likened it to a mountain, before, but I will make it simple, tonight).

    I wrote about how on Sunday we did things like Build Bears, eat popovers and lose our son in the mall for five minutes. I felt like a human again.

    Well, let’s say that if Sunday was a hill day, yesterday was a valley.

    But throughout the day today we climbed, each in our own way.

    Since (how I mentioned previously) the other story is not my story to tell, I will tell you that while I woke up this morning not feeling great, I ended up feeling better and better as the day went on.

    I danced with my son, all around his bedroom, to Ed Sheeran’s sick Grammy performance of “Thinking Out Loud” (featuring John Mayer, Herbie Hancock and Quest Love). We both felt so happy. I thought to myself, “Have I ever felt this happy before? Certainly I must have been happier than this little moment.” but I really was so filled with joy.

    And then the best friend who made me an “aunt” texted to say that she was driving around, and asked if we would like company for an hour.

    Yes!

    So I got to see my little niecey and watch my son try to hug and kiss her, too shy to ever actually make contact.

    And there were some other snapshots of tiny, wonderful moments (tasting an amazing date, fresh from Israel)

    and some crappy moments (listening to my daughter cry because the ziplock bag that holds her little plastic My Little Pony dolls broke).

    I was glad to just be able to chill with my husband, tonight, with some TV or a podcast. First, I would be able to catch up on my Bravo and E! shows while he went rock climbing.

    And then, and yes, I am purposely being vague here, he got home and we held hands, as a team, and he had to face a source of stress in his life, and I made my intention, ahead of time, to not let myself become enraged.

    I am an extremely calm person. Extremely. You would think that because I am so emotional and dramatic I would be having outbursts left and right, but I have raised my voice maybe a handful of times in the past decade. I never yell.

    But, tonight, I failed at meeting my intention. The rage crept up inside of me, as a mixture of protectiveness and disgust, and I tried to just breathe through it.

    Another thing I am is a lazy person. I don’t say this disparagingly. I am not lazy-minded, nor am I a lazy mother, but in general, I would rather be relaxing than running.

    But after we dealt with the stressful situation, and I sat there, rage coursing through me, my husband told me that he had just heard a really cool new band on the radio. Saint Motel.

    And he was excited about it, so I sat on the couch, under my blanket, the E! channel frozen on my living room TV, as he plugged the song “My Type” into our stereo.

    And all of a sudden, almost instantly, I started to shake my head. It was super catchy!

    We both sat for a minute, moving to the beat of the song, and then I realized, I wanted to dance.

    “Do you want to dance?” I asked my husband.

    “Sure!” he said.

    We could dance it out.

    And so we had a crazy dance party in our living room

    and all of a sudden my rage evaporated.

    I actually danced it out.

    I think that this vignette would make for a better scene in a movie than it does for a blog post, as this story is more of a scattered diary entry than a moving call to action or personal confession,

    but I think that’s OK. I give myself permission to share with you the fact that I had two dance parties today,

    with my two main men,

    and that they made me happy.

    And, as so many of you have said, just take life day by day, sometimes even hour by hour, so that is what I am doing. And this hour is an hour to dance party.

    So that I shall do.

    And, because it needs to be said, I am absolutely no longer Marnie; after this past week’s episode of Girls I am, 100%, no going back, Jessa. She rocked my world this week.

    See? This is totally a quirky diary entry.

    Dear Diary,

    Today I made up a few games with the baby and he ate two poptarts, a cheese omelette and a kale smoothie for breakfast. I also got to see my niece in one of my very favorite shirts that once belonged to my daughter. I got to hear praise about my husband and echo it.

    I listened to Ben Stiller on Howard Stern and I found about this new band called Saint Motel.

    I had the best date ever. Oh, and by date I mean the pitted kind, from Israel. It was outrageous.

    I got angry, but then I danced it out.

    XOXO Love Always,

    Jessa

  • March Forth, With Love.

    The fourth of March has been an important day for me for many years. It is a happy day and it is a sad day.

    First, happy. March 4th is my girl J’s birthday, and yesterday she celebrated the big 3-0.

    IMG_1261

    I stayed up until midnight so I could make sure to wish her a “Happy Day” the moment that it became March 4th. That’s the very least I could do, as this girl deserves so much.

    The most special part of J’s birthday, for me, was the outpouring of love that I got to see her receive. She did not just receive the perfunctory “HBD”; People took time to write long and heartfelt notes about what a good human being she is; How she is more giving and loving and positive and warm than anyone else in the world. I am her #1 fan.

    Yesterday was also a sad day for my family. It was the 8 year anniversary of when we lost my beloved Uncle. My daughter is named for him, and my son is like a mini version of him; but we still miss him very much.

    photo 1(10)

    I was trying to think of how to honor him, yesterday.

    My daughter had a late opening at school, so I had to juggle the baby’s nap and driving her in. I let them both get into my bed to snuggle up and at one point I had my son, his head on my shoulder, sleeping soundly on my left side and my daughter, cuddled up on to me, silently, on my right, and I thought, “This is it. This is how I honor him.”

    When I picked her up from school at the end of the day, I looked behind me and saw this:

    photo 2(8)We honor him with love.

    On March 4th every year, I have the unique opportunity to mourn the past and celebrate the future.

    But from now on, instead of highs and lows, I will just honor the day with love,

    for that is what my J

    and my Uncle

    and our family members (those by blood and those by choice)

    deserve.

    And nothing less.

  • to believe

    This has been a week filled with emotional highs and emotional lows;

    And it’s funny, because some days that seemed really bad ended up turning out ok;

    Then, on other days that started out so joyful, storm clouds moved in and things fell apart.

    This week I learned that I was capable of strength that I did not know I had; I often see myself as so fragile, but I am not.

    This week I learned that there are some people in our lives who are always going to disappoint us.

    This week I learned that my people step up to the plate in ways I could never have imagined; I received help from people 16 months-85 years old; My tribe was there for us beyond belief and my new community has turned out to be so much more incredible than I could have ever imagined. #teamMEA.

    Sundays are always hard. I think that’s a pretty universal thing–the Sunday Night Blues, we call them–

    but today is a bit harder than other Sundays, as I have a big week ahead.

    I have been running a very long marathon and this week I find out if I am able to cross the finish line.

    Or not.

    Today I saw a quote by C.S. Lewis on the Facebook Page of Italia Gandolfo of Gandolfo Helin & Fountain Literary Management, the agency by whom I am represented. I know that as a writer and person, C.S. Lewis is many things, but instead of getting involved in anything religious or political, I will remember him as the author of The Chronicles of Narnia, books I read in elementary school, and that remind me to keep believing in the fantastic.

    Because in times like this week, you can do all that you can, you can try your best, you can plan, you can work as hard as possible, you can run that marathon with all of your heart, but sometimes, more than anything, what you need is faith; just the ability to believe that success is possible.

    And so I choose to believe that this past week brought me closer to my people; it has shown me what I am made of and made me feel more grateful than ever for the love that is in my life.

    And as far as next week…I am not sure how it is going to go,

    but I believe, with all of my heart

    that there are better things ahead.

  • A handful of things

    1. I had my MRI/MRA yesterday. It was less scary than I had expected (though I don’t yet know the results because in order to view the disk with my images I would need a PC and also probably a medical degree). However…

    As we headed back for my test, my heart racing, my stomach turning, I admitted to the bubbly, kind tech that I am a bad combination: I am claustrophobic and a hypochondriac. She laughed, in a warm and kind way, and assured me that there was nothing to worry about. “I just have bad anxiety,” I told her, as I was putting my belongings into a locker by the MRI room.

    We got into the room, she put a fresh sheet of tissue on the table and then she said, “Before you go in, I just have to tell you a story. Long story short…” and then went on, and I am not exaggerating, to tell me a ten minute story about how her son started to get weird neurological symptoms, including screaming fits, twitching, the inability to balance, sleep or brush his teeth and she was sure he had a brain tumor, being an MRI tech and all. AND, he also had anxiety. They took him to many hospitals and finally, through a special program, he was diagnosed with Encephalitis, the source of all of his symptoms. Including the anxiety. So basically, she spent ten minutes telling me why I should be more worried. I actually got a bit woozy at one point and sat down (there is only so much you can hear about the blood and brain) but when I finally got in the MRI machine I actually started to laugh. It was so ridiculous that I just had to laugh.

    2. Speaking of my MRI, I had to take out my new ear piercing, just two days after I had it done, as there is no metal allowed. I tried to put it back in last night and it didn’t work well. So my husband re-pierced my ear. I feel like this might not have been a great idea.

    3. Today, someone pointed to my son and asked, “Oh, so you’re the babysitter?” (Score!)

    4. This week, I received the most incredible support from the most incredible friends, near and far. I felt very loved and for that I feel very blessed. I was able to ask questions,†ask for help, tell seemingly endless and boring stories at times, and other times, I did not have to say anything at all.† #friendshipisthickerthanblood

    Speaking of friends, this, the whole dress debacle that seemed to dominate the internet last night, caused me great anxiety. I asked my one bestie, the neuropsychologist, why our brains would make us see things so differently (she saw gold and white; her husband, my husband and I all saw blue and black). I tried to explain to her what white looks like to me: I said it is a light color, whereas black is a dark color, like the sky outside at nighttime. She asked me if I saw marshmallows as black; I asked my other bestie if this was a sign of the apocalypse. I was seriously scared. Thank gd she has a survival kit.

    5. This morning felt like a mom-win.

    I made three different breakfasts for three different dependents, because my one child does not eat strawberries or muffins and the other won’t eat blueberries or eggs.

    photo 3(4)and then there was this one. Have I mentioned that we hand make all of her meals?

    photo 4(5)

    Then, I packed a lunch and decided to write a note for my daughter that she could read by herself (because she’s really taking off in her reading and it is so cool!) So I tried to make it easy, and use a picture like they do in the BOB books.

    Except, I can’t draw. My husband makes the most amazing lunch notes, but this morning it was on me.

    Let me see if you can figure out what I was trying to convey with this masterpiece here:

    photo 2(3)

    Finally, my last moment of heart-exploding pride came when it came time for my daughter to leave for school.

    photo 1(1)I mean, the newsboy cap; the kiss; the chunky thighs; the love.

    And those are a handful of things that are on my mind.

    So, what color did you see?

    (Just kidding. I do NOT want to know.)

  • It is OK for me to admit that I have had a bad day.

    Today I had a very stressful day. I was agitated more than I was happy. I had terrible anxiety and moments of deep sadness. I confided in my husband. I emailed a friend who lives in another state. I did things with my son to try to cope, finding new toys that would make him happy (as he spent the better part of an hour this morning shrieking for me to give him his father’s tub of hair putty).

    My grandparents came over for lunch, as I needed them to watch the baby for me so I could go to a doctor’s appointment. There are times on this site when I share more details than others–sometimes I am purposely vague–but today I will open up and tell you the whole story. Pardon me if things seem a bit scattered; I am doing the best that I can.

    As I have mentioned, we are now in the end stages of finishing our basement , (Carpet goes in tomorrow! We have outlets!) after we had a great flood last year, ruining an entire POD worth of possessions and leading to the carbon monoxide poisoning of both me and my children. That was (is) stressful, but I am very excited about our new big, great living and play space. Not only do I love this because in the finishing of the basement do we gain a new family room from our sunroom and a new guestroom from our former playroom, but I love home design (if you are new on here, I wrote about the transformation of my home on a site called 511 Ever After). I have had a ball picking out paint colors and fixtures and carpeting and tile and it feels kind of nice and grown up to build something of our own, truly from the ground up. But not only am I excited about my basement, I am proud; I felt proud when we got up from the lunch table and I toured my Mommom through the partially finished space. I am going to be honest in saying that it felt good to be able to say, “Here is where I had them put in closets with built in shelves for the toys and then look, we created a nook over here.” and “Look at my new laundry room.” because I have always struggled with feeling like a real grown up (as if I am some sort of imposter) and this made me feel really accomplished in a way that I have not before.

    And then…

    And then, Mommom and I walked up the steps and someone working in the house said, “Um, I am not sure what is going on, but I think that there is a problem in the garage.”

    To give you a visual, our garage is off of the kitchen, next to our back door and powder room and mudroom area. I opened the door and saw water spraying out from the house-side of the basement. Spraying with force. A pipe had burst (I am assuming) and water was covering the things that we moved from the basement to the garage to store, and also things like sports equipment, bikes and strollers. Fortunately, I had electricians working here, and they knew more than I do about home repair, so they shut off the faulty pipe, but I was very upset. Another burst pipe? Really? Just as we are getting our (house related) lives back together?

    And then I realized, I was running late for my appointment with the doctor. And this wasn’t one of my normal doctor visits. And I couldn’t find my keys, so I ran around, and my Poppop told me to slow down 15 times and cautioned me to drive safely to the hospital, but I was in a frenzy.

    As I drove to the hospital, the place where I had both of my children

    and the place where I was told that I would not longer be able to have any more children,

    I called my dear friend. “I just needed to say this out loud to someone who will understand.” And she was so kind and compassionate and she did.

    I walked through the hospital feeling trailed by ghosts. As I walked in the atrium, I saw myself, 18 months ago, walking through the same area, my belly so far out in front of me. I remembered the kind of tea I had ordered and I remembered the hard phone conversations I had had on a specific bench and I broke a little inside.

    “I am never going to have that ever again.” That sentiment echoed in my head on repeat. I couldn’t help it. And I am grateful for my family and my children and my recovery, but I am still in pain.

    In any case, I was particularly nervous for my visit to this particular doctor, for a very specific reason. In “The Hardest Post I’ve Ever Written”, I said:

    “In having my son, my sweet angel of a little boy whom I love with all of my heart, I experienced great depression…the hormones. The crushing hormones that sneak up on you and embrace you in their anxiety-producing grasp. So I suffered what I now know is called peripartum depression. I felt down. Not all of the time, but some of the time. A lot of the time. I couldnít focus on my family. I had scary thoughts. But I was ok. I was still myself.

    And I saw doctors and they were all concerned for me for after the birth. I remember one saying ďI am concerned about you having this baby and having a walloping case of postpartum depression.Ē And I didnít quite understand it but I knew to fear it.”

    My appointment today was with a neurologist. I have never written about this before on here, but when I was 7 months pregnant I had a severe migraine with a complex aura. I am sure that many of you suffer from migraines, my oldest friend has had them for years, but that day was truly one of the scariest in my entire life. I have had many migraines in my life, most of them silent, but twice I have experienced an aura. The first time was in 7th grade math class. I began to see bubbles in front of my eye and my hand went numb and then went home with a crushing headache and vomiting. And by home, I actually mean to Mommom’s apartment where she took care of me and I watched “The Price is Right”.

    The second time was much worse. As I said, I was very pregnant and I was sitting in my sunroom and playing with my daughter when I started to see black spots in front of one of my eyes, as if I had been looking into the sun or a bright light. That then quickly turned into a trail of shimmering lights and a vague headache. At this point, because I knew enough about migraines, thinking I was on the verge of an ocular migraine, I called my mom to come over to help me with my daughter.

    She took me into bed and we all cuddled up in my darkened bedroom and she kept the dialogue going with me in order to distract me, but suddenly I realized that I was losing a word or two per sentence. And then I lost the ability to speak or communicate. I could think what I wanted to say, I could speak, but I was talking in gibberish. And I sent a few text messages during that time to try to ask for help, but they were in completely incoherent as well. I could not get words out. That was the single scariest thing I can ever remember happening to me. After that, the numbness and excruciating headache that lasted for two days seemed like a piece of cake. Truly.

    In any case, I went to a neurologist early in the Fall of 2013, 33 weeks pregnant, and was diagnosed with “Complex migraines with aura”. And then I sat in my new neurologist’s office and I sobbed. I sobbed to him about my fears about a repeat C-Section when my OBGYN was not taking me seriously (he intervened and wrote a note to him, explaining that I needed to be treated with more care, thank you very much) and I sobbed about my fears about a repeat child. And more. And he is the doctor who said, “I am not worried about a neurological problem with you; what I am worried about is that you are going to develop a walloping case of postpartum depression.”

    He gave me prescriptions that day, for medicines (that I have not taken), for tests (that I did not have done) and a note with the name of a psychiatrist.

    This is the psychiatrist whom I see twice every week.

    This man, this doctor, had a profound impact on my life, and he had no idea (because I never followed up with him as I was supposed to). I apologized today for being a “bad patient” and he said “I am in no way angry with you, I just want to get you better.” and ordered a new round of tests (I have to suck it up and get the dreaded MRI/MRA but this time I do not have a basketball sized stomach and can take anxiety medicine) and will be seeing me again in a month. He truly seemed to care.

    I left the hospital a little shaken. I was nervous about my upcoming tests and nervous about what I would come home to find, and the elevator was not working, and because I had not been able to find a parking space, I had to park on the top tier of the garage. I took a deep breath and walked up the four flights of stairs (which, I realize, is not a lot, but for me, right now, it is) and got to the top when I realized that I had not paid for parking before leaving the hospital, which is their newish policy. So back down I went. And then back up, again. And I had to laugh.

    What a day.

    I got home and my grandparents were playing with the kids and my aunt had come over and brought them fun toys and my husband was home and hugged me in the way that I needed to be hugged.

    And if I haven’t gotten real so far, here it is.

    I have been advised by some people to share less on this site; all of these suggestions have been well intentioned, absolutely, but they have basically ranged from the notion that I am perpetuating my “hard story” by continuing to write about it and myself, to the fact that I want to still be regarded as a trustworthy member of the community, without the stigma of mental illness attached to my name.

    But I don’t believe that.

    Because the first thing that I wanted to do after holding my son and snuggling my daughter and hugging my husband was to let my fingers slide across this keyboard and let the words pour out of me (like, let’s say a flood. Too soon?) This is my outlet. Yes, my primary goal with this site is to help others, but I am most definitely helping myself in the process.

    So you may have noticed that my posts recently have been a bit more upbeat and light. That is for two reasons: First, because things have been going pretty well, and for that I am so grateful. But second, it is because I have made a conscious effort to try to make this blog less “harsh” or “honest” or “self-reflective”. But that’s not who I am.

    And today was a bad day. And it is OK for me to admit that I have had a bad day.

    If people look at me differently for it, then it is their problem.

    My tribe, my true, deeply rooted tribe of people, love me and support me and build me up, even on my weakest days (and sometimes mostly on my weakest days. Do you know how many of my people have sat on my bed with me in the past 6 months alone? When I’ve needed them they were not only “there”, they were right there). They don’t try to silence me, they let me be who I am, and that is honest and communicative and as I said to my husband during a teary conversation on Saturday, “I must be doing something right, because look at my friends.” I have the best friends in the world. No, really, I do.

    So today I felt anxious, I felt proud, I confronted a new home challenge and ghosts from my past, and took steps towards taking care of myself, both medically and emotionally. Like my basement, I am a work in progress, and unexpected obstacles come up, but I am learning to fix them. I am finding my strength.

    And it’s funny; as I type this I am realizing something. Maybe today wasn’t so bad, after all.

  • Valentine’s Day my way.

    I have made it no secret that I am actually one of those people who loves Valentine’s Day.

    I don’t love it because it is a cheap or forced excuse to celebrate love; I just don’t understand not liking it. If you love someone, then tell them every day. Including on Valentine’s Day. It can be any old day. It can be a day of special treats. It can be celebrated in June. In a year when I am embracing the holidays, it was nice to wake up yesterday morning and linger in bed with both of my kids.

    Yesterday I did so many lovely things, most of which I did not capture on film; I got to hug and kiss many people who mean a lot to me; I gave my daughter a “big girl” present of an assortment of free perfume samples and I watched her beam; I celebrated the birthday of a friend who has become family; I heard secrets and smiled; I watched as my husband won not one but two toys from the Claw Machine at the bowling alley; I dipped macadamia nut brownies into chocolate fondue and then drew a chocolate mustache on my face in a fancy restaurant; I squeezed into a photo booth with people I love and took silly pics; I danced at a concert where people were half my age, wearing a Kate Moss t-shirt and expensive shoes; I caught snowflakes on my tongue; I loved.

    photo 2(2)

    We dance partied to Grease;

    photo 1(4)

    photo 2(3)We got mommy daughter manicures; her nails were sparkly pink and mine looked like metallic conversation hearts;

    photo 3(2)†††††††††† We came home to a Valentine’s Day surprise for my daughter from a beau;

    photo 4(2)Peeps sent me some love;

    photo 5(1)

    I watched as my daughter was made to feel special;

    photo 2(5)

    We ate candy;

    photo 3(3)

    My Mommom gave me a pack of Hanky Panky underwear;

    photo 4(3)

    More Peeps from more of my peeps!!;

    photo 3(3)

    I won a contest from Rochelle at Rodan + Fields and I wore bright red lipstick, something that I never do;

    photo 5(2)

    I got to be silly with friends;

    photo 1(5)

    I ran down the streets of the city in the cold and wind and snow, but I felt warm;

    photo 2(4)

    I had a wonderful day.

    I hope that you did too.

    And if you haven’t been wished it yet, Happy Valentine’s Day. Not because I have to say it, or not because someone invented a holiday to commercialize love, but because you deserve to be told.

    So paint some chocolate on your face or eat a piece of candy or catch a snowflake on your tongue

    and let yourself feel

    just a little bit

    warm

    and a lotta bit

    loved.

  • Sweet things.

    This week, things changed for me a bit;

    My plans, my outlook, my mood.

    I was able to appreciate some really sweet things from some really sweet people.

    There are many. I have been the lucky recipient of so many kind notes, inspirational screen shots, kisses–

    but here are just a few of the sweet things that touched me this week:

    photo 3(1)I have a good, old-fashioned pen pal. My pen pal went on a trip to New Orleans a couple of weeks ago and sent me photos of beignets, to which I responded, “I want those now!” And this week, they were delivered to me. Now that is sweet.

    photo 1(3)

    Do you remember when my husband woke me up at 3 o’clock in the morning to give me a new pair of shoes? Well, this week, he brought home another “Just Because” present. When our pipe burst in May, leaving our basement completely flooded, I lost nearly all of my shoes. Thankfully, not the aforementioned 3am pair, but 2 entire suitcases of shoes (they were being stored in our always dry basement while we were rearranging the bedrooms after the birth of my son). We are not in a position for me to just go on a shoe shopping spree, but my husband walked in the door this week with a huge box and an even bigger smile. “I want you to start rebuilding your collection,” he said. Just because. Sweet as can be.

    photo 2(2)

    On Wednesday I visited the synagogue where I grew up and experienced many special moments, most of which are too personal to share. BUT, I will say that for anyone with whom I went to Hebrew School, our quilt is still hanging up in the school building! I took a picture of my square, and saw the squares of so many of my old friends (who are my still friends) and it was a sweet thing to see. photo 5(1)

    The story above says it all. Someone took the time out of her night to make sure that I was shown some sweetness, both literally and figuratively, by leaving a package at my door. The awesomeness of this community never ceases to amaze me.

    photo 4(1)This week, my husband built a castle for our kids.

    We have been finishing our basement (through this oddest series of events, this dream ended up happening!!

    Perhaps I willed it into reality?)

    which means that our house is filled with things in strange places. I am currently referring to my sunroom as “The Furniture Store”, as it is housing two completely separate rooms worth of furniture. Two couches. Three chairs. Two ottomans. Many lamps. It also has half of our childrens’ toys, the other half being stored in half of our third floor playroom, which is now being converted into a guest room.

    And boxes. So many boxes. Huge boxes, for things like pedestal sinks and toilets and tv stands.

    Is there anything sweeter than watching your kids play together in their own, magical, cardboard castle?

    Yes. Yes, there is;

    photo(2)

    It’s watching your husband and children act out a play called “Ariel in her Undersea Castle”.

    And really, when you have friends, and family members and kids and memories like mine,

    there’s not much more to do than to savor their sweetness. And this week, I am so blessed that I can.

  • Charming.

    I had a few conversations recently in which I shared that one of my very favorite words is “charm”, in both it’s noun and verb form.

    I was just looking up the video that I made chronicling my past year in music, and do you know how YouTube shows you a list of videos down the right sidebar of the screen suggesting music that you may like, based on what you are watching currently? Well, I cannot imagine why, but if you are watching my Fox & the Hounds review, the top video that YouTube recommends for you is an obscure video of Brett Dennen singing “Out of My Head” in what appears to be a little guitar shop.

    And the reason why I am sharing this, besides the fact that he is my favorite musical artist and he gives me warm and fuzzy feelings inside, is because I find Brett Dennen to be absolutely charming. He is loveable. And I think you can see that here.

    And I cherish every charming moment I can;

    like this morning when my daughter traded videos with a new yet old friend of mine, involving doggie dance parties, mermaid costumes and “The Book With No Pictures” recitations;

    or when we were giving Lola attention and my girl ran upstairs, changed and came down in a pink dress (the color of Lola’s bow) and dog ears;

    or, how my son put his head up to mine (his version of a kiss) and said, “Mama”;

    or how my daughter said, “Daddy, can you set up my wifi connection?” and we said “Do you know what that means?” and she said, “No. What does it mean?”;

    Just a few happy moments that I can gather up into one little, metaphorical charm to place in my pocket and keep with me today.

    Give your love, give your love, give your love now.

    Any you get it back and you get it back

    Featured Image captured by Lindsay Docherty Photography in 2014