Saturday, April 14, 2012

Dear Leasa,

You are 42 years old.  You live in Denver, Colorado and have two sons whom are in middle school - they play ice hockey.  One is defense, one is a goalie. (I realize you don't even know the positions = you will). One is finishing 8th grade, the other 7th. (You are also divorced, contrary to upbringing - it's not the end of the world.  You married a really good guy.  He's a GREAT dad. You couldn't have picked a better dad for your children).

And here is what I have to tell you.

Your Granny & Papo are still alive.  They will be married 65 years on May 1st.  Papo is not doing well, but everyone has been worried about him for years.  It's Granny that you need to watch.  She says she okay.  And she will still make you look like you are standing still.  She has a million activities - she loves everything about your life.

But it took you until 42 to learn a few things.  And it's not just Granny, it's women from the South and life.  I hope you read this when you are young enough to change, yet old enough to know you need to carry some of it forward.  This is what you need to learn:

  • When someone says  "Bless your heart"  - they really do feel empathy.  They also want you to get over yourself.  It's not that bad.
  • When a lady tells you "That's nice" - she is bored - she's just being polite  (and you will have a GREAT JOKE that everyone in VAIL loves about this comment - you learned this one early)
  • FIXIN - has NOTHING to do with the car.  It can be dinner, it can be your face and it can mean ABOUT TOO.  After all, you are from Texas.
  • STILL - don't EVER tell someone "they look pretty - STILL"  or  "For their age".  Just stop at "you look pretty" OR 'You have nice skin'.
  • PLEASE, don't ever say "are you wearing that?"  THAT'S just rude.  Obviously, whomever you are about to say that too is wearing it or you wouldn't have to think "are you wearing that?"  You can still THINK that.  Please just do not say it out loud.  It's embarrassing, for everyone.
  • The thing that will really "drive you crazy" is the following phrase:  "don't tell anyone".  Here is your thought  "PLEASE DON'T BURDEN ME WITH your secret".  Some how, if you tell someone else, and tell them not to tell, it lets you off the hook.  When someone tells you this, please tell them something that you KNOW they will not keep a secret. Then say the same thing.  OR say, NO, please don't tell me.  I KNOW you are dying to know what they will say, but have some respect.  For yourself.
  • The college kid on the plane next to you, buy him a drink - it turns out to be his birthday.  Sometimes, you can just be, being nice.
  • The scariest words you will ever hear are in written form.  They come in an e-mail with a picture and it says "is this you?" or "do you know these girls".  Yes, STILL.  You've still got it.
  • You will LOVE movies you never thought you'd like.  For reasons you won't even begin to understand.   
    • You cry at Soul Surfer and the Blind Side not because you wish you were the main character, because you are jealous that they are the Mom you were supposed to be.  Only you didn't know you had it in you. You are just jealous.  That's Hollywood. 
  •  That skinny teenager with glasses, and NO self-esteem.  She does okay.
  • Your parents love you.  So does your Aunt.  You also love your sister. She loves you too.  And well, you all always knew your grand-parents would do anything in the world for you. 
  • You have INCREDIBLE friends.  
  • You are in for a bumpy ride, but hang on, it's all worth it.

I can't even prepare you for being 42.  After all, that skinny, curly haired girl is still in there.  She just has a few pounds on her (Believe it or not) .  And even better hair product. (You will have GREAT hair). 

Just remember - hang on.  You got out.  Don't ever forget what made you you.

You couldn't even have dreamed it this well.


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