This and other baffling questions my kids are asking.
Recently my daughter asked me this question, as we were out running errands because the van is where we spend most of our time. But its like a traveling confessional and class room rolled into one.
We share the mundane and the serious in the van.
When I pick them up I always ask, How was your day? Fine.What did you eat for lunch? Are you hungry? (Why do I even ask this, the answer is ALWAYS YES! What did you learn today? Nothing.Nothing? Really you were there all day and you learned nothing at ALL?
But this question usually gets a response or forces something to bubble up.
“Did anyone get arrested today or get in trouble?” Well no one EVER gets arrested, but sometimes there is some poor unfortunate kid who got caught talking or never turns in his work. As kids its such a relief to not be the one in trouble that you automatically turn stool pigeon on your friends and country men.
I also use these times to expose them to awesome hits from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s, The Beatles Channel or Classic Vinyl.
I also field random questions about life.
Today my 12 year old asked me “Mom, how do you know if you like someone?” EEK Where do I begin? How much of my sordid past do I reveal without scarring her for life?
I said “Hold on let me get outta this parking lot” #stallfortime
This was my answer:
Well it’s tricky, its different for everyone, sometimes its the way someone looks, or they make you laugh or the way they make you feel. Like when you see them you may have a weird fluttery feeling in your stomach? I look back on some of the guys I thought I really liked and I wonder WHAT was I thinking?
With your dad it was his voice and the way he smells (Nivea Just For Men stuff aka “handsome” as we call it in our house). Remember daddy and I met on the phone so I didn’t even know what he looked like until a week before I met him.
But after talking for 6 months I was in love without all that awkward face to face stuff complicating it (chemistry). Which was a good thing because if we met face to face I would not given him a chance because he’s short.
Totally shallow and awful to admit but it’s the TRUTH!
See I only dated tall guys and I wouldn’t have looked past that if I hadn’t spent so much time getting to know daddy first. God had a better plan then I was coming up with.
Sometimes it’s what someone says. One time a long time ago, I liked a guy named Rick, we met in a bar and he reminded me of a young Clint Eastwood. Well we hit it off right away and had a long history after that. But the thing that made me fall in love with him, was something he said.
He told me as a kid he had dog that followed him to school most days. No matter what he couldn’t make that dog mind. So he had to spend his own money bailing that dog out of the pound. Well one day he didn’t have anymore money and he decided to break into the pound and break his dog out and ALL the other dogs too.
That just melted my heart because it was like every after school special meets “Escape From Witch Mountain” like every kids movie where the kids out smarted the grown ups, come to life.
Eventually he went in the Army and while he was in Germany he applied for Security Clearance. Well, that stunt was on his juvenile record. So his mom had to go to the police station and work with them to get it expunged off his record so he could proceed with his clearance.
Well, I was crazy about him but I knew it would never work out because of something else he said once. “I could NEVER marry a woman who didn’t finish college” well that pierced my heart and I thought that means me. (At the time I was in and out of junior college, never to finish.)
But again God had a way better plan. He had Daddy set aside for me and if you had told me I would leave Orange County and move to 15 years later. I would have said “You are CRAZY! That is NEVER gonna happen” and look at us now.
See as an older mom I struggle to shield my kids from all the garbage I was exposed to as a kid. I try my best to shelter them and talk to them about whats right and wrong. What God expects from us and why the Church has rules like a parent does.
I don’t want either of my girls to make the same life altering mistakes and missteps I did. I don’t want them to get all their love advice from Cosmopolitan or Sex and The City. #RecipeForDisaster
I want them to make informed moral choices based on Church teachings and know they are special, unique and divinely made. I want them to know one day they will meet the right man for the future who will share their faith and life.
Maybe they will choose a chaste single life? Maybe God will call them to consecrated life? Here’s the rub, I see why families in the past had many children. It must be easier to have them become priests and nuns, if some get married and have grand babies.
But ultimately I pray they hear Gods calling for them and in the mean time I pray for guidance to lead them on the very narrow path to salvation and grow their faith and mine along the way.
My job as their mama is not only to haul them around in a never ending Uber style carpool. But to get them, my husband and my self into heaven. Some days this is a struggle when baskets of laundry, dirty dishes and bills are piling up.
But when my daughter says “Mom I’m trying to wake up early and pray a decade of the Rosary, it makes my day better” well that is when I know the Holy Spirit is working OVERTIME on my cause. Thanks Be To God!
Your friend and struggling parent,
Pilar The Papist Squirrel