Where’s Your Stoke?

This photo: #momlife at 11,000 feet.

Ana was so excited to ski with mom and dad this morning. Big stoke. But then getting dressed and the boots and the walk with the gear and the chill got the best of her. Her excitement waned. ”Where’d your stoke go?” I asked her.

Do you ever talk to your kids and feel like you are speaking directly to yourself? This happens to me ALL. THE. TIME. when I am disciplining my Ana. She may not be my flesh and blood, but she is my heart and soul, and good Lord all of the things I need to talk to her about I am usually giving myself a good talking to as well. I get about halfway through my lecture (have a long way to go on being a perfect parent) and am like, “oh goodness, I do that too.”

Anyway, back to the stoke. Hers went on vacation for a hot minute. It was nothing a little music from the frozen soundtrack and a couple of gummy bears couldn’t conjure back up. We went out and had a great morning. But it led me to think about my stoke. It’s been ebbing and flowing this past year. It’s like my stoke has been playing hide and seek with me. At least it’s still fun and games, but I hate when I can’t find it! Like I said in my last post, I want 2020 to be “extra.” Which means extra stoke. When mine goes on vacation, I usually need a nap, or an outdoor adventure, or a daydream, or the time of the month to shift. Hot showers and country music help too.

How’s your stoke right now? Does it ebb and flow? When it’s hiding, what things help you find it again?

Living “Extra”

Having so much fun with the cousins in Arizona!!

I had the kids all tucked into their little closet floor bed tonight at my sisters house… and then a joke was told about butts (big mistake) and one thing led to another and sleep was postponed an hour and we laughed and giggled in a circle by flashlight and a night that should have been ordinary became a little extra and the bedtime that should have ended at “lights out,” became, like this sentence, a complete run on. “Tell the story about the cactus!!” “Tell the story about the eggs!!” “Tell the story about the slide!” And on it went.

When I turned 13 years old I got to bring a bunch of friends to a hotel for a sleepover. We went for a night swim and climbed / snuck up the closed / dry water slide. When we got to the top we really wanted to slide down, but a water slide needs water to be fun. Or, it needs at least some sort of liquid. ”Teamwork makes the dream work,” they say, and there was a decent sized group of us so… urine luck? 😬 Together we managed to “pool our resources” and found ourselves slipping and sliding in no time. (I know, 13 year old me was vile and disgusting and I should be ashamed of myself… but also,a little proud?) My kids love that story, about the ordinary birthday party that turned into something… extra.

On the topic of pools, last month we were visiting Adams parents in Florida and my 4 year old was standing at the side of the pool getting ready to cannonball. “Mom, jump with me?!?” I totally hesitated. My in-laws were watching and I’m wayyy not stoked on my body in a bathing suit right now. Also, I was wearing a lot of not waterproof mascara and didn’t particularly want to get my face wet. Also, enter any number of excuses here as to why, at that moment, I was going to choose to say no to doing something that, as an adult, was just a fraction more than ordinary. That day I chose extra. Bombs away!

I have been thinking seriously about 2020 and have come to the conclusion that I want this year to be a series of small extras, within our family, that lead to a big impact. A broken bedtime and a chubby cannonball draw me further out of my comfort zone and closer to the hearts of my kids. It’s growth all around.

Memories are not made, stories are not collected, in a space that is routine, comfortable, normal or ordinary.

Ordinary + Ordinary does not equal Extraordinary.

Hoping that I can remember to make 2020 a year of small extras. What do you think? What are your resolutions? And, for a super important question, who wants to go swimming with me??

Sympathetic Resonance

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Our eldest daughter has been noticing things lately… .

“Mom, is anyone else in my class adopted?”

“How about anyone else in my school?”

“Mom, I’m the only one in my class with darker skin.”

“Mom, I’m the only one in this family with dark skin.”

As much as our culture applauds individuality and following your own path (as long as that path fits in a particular box), doesn’t it sometimes just totally suck to feel like you’re the only one?

A few days ago Ana was particularly upset. She flung herself on our bed and wailed loudly. When she did that, my guitar, which was hanging on our wall untouched, responded with a sound to match. My guitar, WHICH WAS HANGING ON OUR WALL UNTOUCHED, responded to her cry with a sound to match.

The note startled her out of her despair. She looked at me scared. The whole situation just about had us both running right out of the house.

I did a little research, and it wasn’t a ghost… .
It’s a thing. It’s called sympathetic resonance. It’s when a “formerly passive string responds to external vibrations to which it has harmonic likeness.”

What for a moment was beyond creepy, now became one of the most beautiful things I had ever heard. That dang guitar, usually just literally hanging out doing nothing, internalized our daughter’s pain, identified a likeness, and responded to her with its own note of mourning. Ana felt scared, but I imagine she also felt heard.

1. Is this the craziest thing ever, or what?! 2. Does this strike a chord for you as it did me?!? (See what I did there?) It’s so easy to feel like we’re the only one… no matter what it is we’re going through. You’re not the only one. I promise. And it feels good to match pitch. So let’s not be passive strings. Let’s tell our stories. Let’s show up for each other.

I love you friends.

Perspective

Last night our baby hardly slept at all. She lost her fav paci this weekend and we didn’t realize what a catastrophe this was until 11 pm became 2am became 4am. Needless to say, I’m TIRED.

I woke up this morning after an hour of sleep and I kid you not my very first thought was, “shit, today is going to suck.” Um. Of course it would with that attitude!

I was riding the chair lift up the mountain with another solo momma last week. We got to talking. She was visiting from San Fransisco. It had been snowing here for a solid 24 hours. She had already been skiing all morning and it was my first run of the day. “Yeah, I went over to the other side of the mountain for my last few laps,” she said, “but it’s much better over here.”

“Oh,” I replied, contemplating what she had said. “What do you mean, ‘better’?” I asked.

“Well the powder is really deep over there,” she said, “much easier skiing over here.”

Um. Glad I asked. …………

It was nearing the end of autumn and I was chatting with a friend on the phone. “It is dumping snow over here,” she said. “We are going to be in for a looonnnng winter.”

Um. Or the best winter in a really really really long time.

There are two sides to every coin and there’s a bright side to most dark days. Just a little reminder when you’re super tired, like me, or super snowed in, like my friends. Sometimes we just need to adjust our googles and view life through a different lens.

And on a side note, how handsome is the view in mine? (husband) ;P

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