Tag Archives: love

Walking together

17 Apr

Jade and Halia are walking to their friend’s house (5 doors down) to play. I suggest they hold hands and tell them to stay by the side of the road when they walk.

Jade: “Yes, we will.”

Halia (to Jade, after the door is closed behind them): “You will hold my hand, so the cars don’t get me and make me dead.”

I can see them walking over, jumping over the cracks together, one dark sweater, one bright pink shirt. And life is beautiful.

Sayin’ “I love you”

14 Feb

When I was growing up, my family was never the type to say, “I love you.” It just wasn’t done. I went to Catholic school and once we had a mass in the gym where the priest gave a homily that I don’t remember much about, except that he inspired and encouraged us to go home and tell our families that we loved them.

I went home and nervously approached my mom in the kitchen and sheepishly mumbled, “I love you.” Because I did, after all. She came right over and gave me a hug, looked at my sympathetically and kindly asked, “What did you do?” Needless to say I didn’t try that experiment again for a long time.

Over time, different forces changed my family so that we did, in fact, begin to say “I love you”, and now we say it often and naturally. It’s important to me to mean it, to ensure that it’s not just a throw-away phrase at the end of our phone conversations.

I guess it’s always been important to me to be truthful or at least careful about using this particular phrase, maybe because we didn’t say it much when I was growing up. I remember the first time a boyfriend told me he loved me. We were standing in the entrance of my house and I was completely stunned and didn’t say anything back, which must have been rather disconcerting for him. But I didn’t want to say it if I didn’t mean it, and I hadn’t figured out yet what I was feeling. Poor guy.

A friend in university had a boyfriend with similar feelings of restraint. I love the story she told me about how they were parked somewhere one evening and he was compelled to say, “I… I… LIKE you STRONGLY!” Ahh, there’s nothing like a little conviction to sweep a woman off her feet.

It’s only in the last year or two that I’ve been able to start saying, “I love you” to the rest of my family — by which I mean the family I married into. It’s not that I haven’t loved them for years, it’s just that I don’t often hear them saying it. Michael’s not too mushy with his parents, and his dad in particular is not given to flagrant displays of emotion. But with distance and Granny’s battle with cancer, we’ve all become more able to say it. Well, at least the women have. I’ve told Marian and Lindsay and both Granny and Pop that I love them. But I have a feeling that Jim would squirm. And so would Tim. So for them, I just feel it; perhaps we’ll grow into it eventually.

I’ve been promising to post my latest song (which isn’t even my latest song anymore), but I’m still having some issues with my throat, so haven’t been able to record it. Here’s a little something in the meantime, in the spirit of Valentine’s Day. It’s the song I wrote for my sister and her new hubby (hi Pedro!) for their wedding this past November. I admit that it doesn’t exactly have the deepest lyrics, but I wrote it as a way to say “I love you” to them, and so I share it with you today as a way to say “I love you” to all my family and dear friends.

The song is called “Together” and I’m accompanied by Mani Mobini. Please feel free to watch him instead of me in the video. (He’s cute, isn’t he? Sorry ladies, he’s already spoken for.)

Romance, fluff, and other stuff

13 Feb

I can’t quite remember when I first started reading Harlequins; sometime in my late teens, I think.  I had never thought of them as worthy reading material until I saw that they were regular fare for one of my smartest friends.  Oh yes, and I had a roommate who had to read one and analyze it for a university course.  So I gave them a try and they soon became an occasional part of my reading diet, sorta like a literary bag of chips: not much substance, done with quickly, and guiltily satisfying.

The trouble with reading Harlequins is that consuming too many is unhealthy.  Seriously.  One summer I was reading quite a lot of them and I could actually feel my view of the world getting skewed.  I knew that the way relationships are portrayed in these books was completely unrealistic, but I was getting sucked into the idealism.  I decided I’d better leave off the Harlequins if I didn’t want to damage my real-life relationship, and I went back to my staple of children’s literature, which is at least wholesome.

I still occasionally read a romance novel on holidays, though usually ones with a little more substance to them than the Harlequins.  And these days, there’s always some “chick lit” available if a different kind of fluff is called for.  But, just as healthy meal preparation has become more important since Jade started eating with us, reading choices in these times of limited leisure time are also more — I don’t know, what’s the word? — nourishing.

I guess that makes me a bit of a snob, but when faced with scarce resources — and time is certainly that — one must be at least a little picky.  Of course, one of my main sources of reading material these days is not from books at all, but from the 40 or so blogs I’m subscribed to in my feed reader, the majority of which are mommyblogs.  The neat thing about it is the ability to interact with the “characters” I’m reading about, getting to share ideas and to commiserate, which is something I find truly nourishing.  Even when I end up going to bed late after catching up with everyone.

What are your favourite reads?


12 Feb

I’ve enjoyed all the comments you made on the “First Kiss Controversy” post, so I am inspired to continue the Valentine’s week theme today.

I once heard a guy on the radio saying that if he’d been a teenager in the days of the rotary phone (hey, we had one of those!) he would never have gone on any dates.  It takes so much more time to dial a number on a rotary phone, he said he would have lost his nerve before getting to the end of the number.

The story makes me laugh, but it has a ring of truth to it.  I think back to my high school dating years and the amount of time I spent crafting perfectly-thought-out notes to guys about my thoughts on our relationship.  This often involved a rough draft with many revisions and transpositions and crossings-out, and then a “good copy” written out as neatly as possible.  You can imagine the hours of work that took.  But it was important to me because I knew I wouldn’t be able to articulate all my thoughts in a face-to-face.  (I like to think that I’ve matured since then, both on the over-analysis front, and on the ability to have a good, frank discussion on important matters.)

Anyway, where I’m going with this is, I wonder how it would have changed things if e-mail had been available at that time? Or texting, or whatever future development it is that Jade’s going to be growing up with?  In high school, I once used a letter to break up with a long-time boyfriend.  I know that sounds cold, but I couldn’t face him when I’d just found out he’d slept with some girl. (AFTER I’d already forgiven him for doing it with another girl months earlier and made all the harder by the fact that I was still a virgin.  Ah, the drama of high school.)

But doesn’t a break-up by e-mail seem even worse?  Somehow the time and effort it takes to craft a hand-written letter offsets at least a bit of the coldness.  Plus with a letter you could actually decide to sit with the person while they read your point of view.  As a teenager, would I have made a distinction between a letter and an e-mail?  Would I even think of hand-writing anything?

What about asking someone out?  Would e-mail make it easier for someone to get up the nerve?  The first guy who was ever a “boyfriend” asked a friend to ask me out for him.  (God, it makes me laugh to remember this stuff!)  Maybe a text message would make the whole thing less stressful.

Whew!  All of this makes me glad to be out of the dating game.  But I do wonder what the minefields of romance will look like for our kids as they start growing up.

Okay, maybe I’m not over the whole over-analysis thing yet. 😉


19 Jan

With all the Valentine’s merchandise coming out in stores now (just a touch early, big surprise) I’ve been thinking about crushes lately. Would it be wrong to admit that I get crushes at the drop of a hat? Silly schoolgirl crushes, crushes on guys I’d never have a relationship with, crushes far too ridiculous to tell anyone about, at least until they’re over and are then fun to laugh about.

Like when I watched that fluffy thing “13 Going on 30” and totally had a crush on Mark Ruffalo by the end of the movie, he was so gosh-darned adorable (and so was Jennifer Garner, for that matter). But I also get crushes on people who do kind or thoughtful things for me, and I’m a total sucker for a guy who can sing, or one who can make me laugh.

The last time I read my high school diary one of the things that struck me most was the ridiculous number of guys I had crushes on. If you’re a guy who went to school with me before university and you’re a friend on Facebook, there’s about an 80% chance that I had a crush on you. My friend Shannon would say it’s because I’m a Scorpio, but I don’t really go in for astrology, so perhaps it’s just that I’m a loving person. Or something.

Whatever it is, Michael kindly puts up with it. I’ve always been open with him about my crushes; I figure it’s a good way to stay honest. Not that it’s ever been a problem, you know, ’cause Mark Ruffalo never returned any of my calls.

Wait a minute… cute, musical, funny, thoughtful (well… he tries!) No wonder I married Michael. (*heaves a sigh*) He’s due to get home tomorrow afternoon, and it couldn’t come soon enough.