Tuesday, June 29, 2010



So, we've been feeling really, really melancholy in our home these last few days. What with the boys all being gone on spiritual journeys and such. And like a pig in the mud, we've decided to wallow.

Been playing old family movies, folks. Every single night. And can I just say that, as a form of torture, seeing your maturing children back in the soft focus of remember when, well, it brings a grown father and mother to their weeping knees faster than any dripping water on the forehead, or '007-seatless-chair-gonad-whapping' ever could.

It's a combination of guilt, guilt and more guilt. Followed by an unhealthy dose of guilt.

"I should have breast fed longer."

"Would it have killed me to let him eat the dog food?"

"I should never have locked her out of the house like that."

How were we to know that they would grow up? As far as we were concerned, this was "The song that never ends...yes, it goes on and on, my friends..."

And then one day, this little piggy goes to the market...or Target...and the other little piggies stay home. And just like that, it's...over. The last baby lullaby refrain. Suddenly, the song was never so sweet, never so cherished, never so absent as it is from that moment on.

Years ago, my father solemnly and sincerely uttered these words..."If I'd known how wonderful you were going to be when you grew up, I'd have been so much kinder to you." And we embraced, and I laughingly reminded him that if he'd been any less of a parent back then, I'd never have been as wonderful as I am right now.

Or as humble.

You've heard the phrase, "All because two people fell in love..."

Well, it takes more than love to raise a child. I'm coining the phrase, "All because they locked me out of the house."

Feel free to put it in vinyl above your hearth.


One Cluttered Brain said...

I love it!!
"All because they locked me out of the house!"

Thanks Lisa!!! :)

This explains so much...of how I feel somedays...:)

kara Elmore said...

This is absolutely BEAUTIFUL!!! And you are right ... because you always are ... if they had been any "kinder" we would not have turned out the way we did. It takes some serious brains to raise a child to who they are suppose to be.

Last week I went to visit our cute dad - as he pushed and pushed baby maby on the Victorian swing set. I could tell he was troubled a bit - with money, with work, with his age and what he had accomplished. And I swore right then, that if I had a million dollars I would first alleviate his burden. But then he said something so profound I held back the tears to not seem like a bubbling pregnant fool ... he said "but you know - with all the money problems we have seen, the best blessing I could ask for is 4 wonderful children that follow in the footsteps of the Gospel. THAT, above money and anything else, is a blessing I would never want to trade in"

Or something like that.

That night I wept. Knowing that of all the trials he and mom have seen - the one blessing he would've always wanted is to see his children as they are. And I knew I'd always want the same. Give the money problems for 50 more years ... if only my children were kept under the watchful eye of our Savior every day.

You can let go of the guilt tonight - read another of Ashton's letters as he explains yet AGAIN that he loves his mother. His parents. And he NOW understands what you were trying to do as he was growing up. You have done well my sweet sister.

Now - because I praised you so much, will you blog about me again?? :)

Anonymous said...

After the very tender blog from you and the comment from Kara, I may be out of place BUT....yay...I'm not melancholy-I'm the 25,500th person to visit your site!! I was really shootin' for 25,000th but I missed it...so I'll take 500th runner-up! Anony:)

P.S. I felt the same way looking through some photo albums yesterday. :/

T said...

forget the hearth - I'm putting it in vinyl above each of the children's beds!

Holly said...

Oh WOW!! We have a daughter that would SO USE THAT!!! But really... we didn't MEAN TO!! And you know... I NEVER went to bed before EVERY child was in theirs AGAIN!!! OOPS... Let's just say it's a good thing there were blankets in the garage... And I dreampt of someone annoyingly playing the same key over and over on the piano... Yeah... It's called a DOORBELL... *sigh* GILT!! I'm WITH YA' SISTA'! Saddest part is, THAT one didn't DESERVE it! ;p GAH!

McClendon said...

Lisa and Kara, here's another slant from another perspective. Who would have thought my little cousin, Bobby, would have turned into such a man. We were soooo goofy then.

reasonably chubby said...

Haha! :) So true, it takes some mean ol' parenting to get the job done. I loved this entire post! You are an excellent writer. It's so true-when the kids are little it feels it will be forever, and suddenly in a blink of an eye that phase is over. WAHHHH!! And now my 22 yr. old just said, "please Mother, don't lecture, and said she had to go..." Please tell me THIS song is not the song that never ends.

Lisa said...

Reasonably chubby, you're too kind. I'm thinking of selling that saying...probably get rich off it. Anony, thank you, dear girl, for being so loyal and true. Boo, love your guts. I shall blog about you. A fluff piece.

Krista said...

Lisa, I think we all carry that guilt (or at least the good parents do). Can we ever give them too much or love them too much? I used to drive myself crazy, torturing myself about the "what if I did this or that?" and I had a wake up call that said, "Love them. No one else in the world can love them like their mother." I think if you can just say you did the best you knew how, then you've done all you can. Now I'm going to go cry cause my baby is 10 and Ali is going to be a Senior. Seth turned out pretty dang good, too. You can't love them too much. And I know your parents definitely didn't love you too much!