Author Archives: mythankfulboy

About mythankfulboy

My son and I are Unitarian Universalists practicing the faith in an area where there are few UU churches, and so we are "unchurched". We enjoy a wide church community, though, through social media. Thanks for joining us.

First date

This weekend Mythankfulboy had his first date – the kind where the date’s mom drives them to a movie and home immediately after.  It was last-minute, and he was at his dad’s so I didn’t get to meet them, but B was quite tickled with the whole thing.  The last thing I texted him before he left was, “Have fun and impress her mother”, and he responded, “Yes ma’am.”  About an hour after he got back to his dad’s he texted me again asking if I’d come pick him up and take him to meet some of our friends for a slice of pizza, which turned, then, into ice cream as well.  He was pinging off the walls, partly because we were being spontaneous and he was seeing friends he’s missed, but he was clearly already on a high.  Adorable.

Baseball, on the other hand, seems to be deteriorating.  It is raining now, and he sent me a text at work that the game was canceled and he was glad.  Ugh.  Of course, it means it was rescheduled on the only night this week he didn’t have a game…

It was late when we got home last night after swimming for a bit at a friend’s house.  We did the chalice from opposite side of the bathroom door.  I called, “What are you thankful for kiddo?” and he yelled, “Swimming and a good night.  What about you?”  I yelled back, “I’m thankful for time with friends”.  He said, “Yeah”.

What I’m most thankful for, though, is that my boy called his momma to spend a little time with her after his first date (I’m sure the pizza was a guise).  It made the whole thing a little easier on his momma’s heart.

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Posted by on June 19, 2017 in Uncategorized


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School’s out

School’s out, and Mythankfulboy has returned to his usual affable self.  Baseball has had its ups and downs, but he played several full games at second, and played well.  We had the annual beginning-of-summer talk in which I tell him that I did everything for him when he was little because he couldn’t do things himself, and during the school year and baseball season I do the lions’ share because of school and homework and sports, but that, during the summer, it’s time for him to kick in for me because my more-than-full-time job doesn’t go away and neither do baseball or the house.  We’re a few days in, and so-far-so-good.  When I get home from work he proudly gives me a list of the productive things he did, and I can count on him to do things I text him about during the day.   Blessed be.

He’s changing physically these days; he’s getting taller and taller and I find myself frequently stopping to be amazed at his wingspan.  He’s dedicated to fitness, and most days works out with weights and has baseball practice, and some days he adds a jog and time in his backyard batting cage.  He and his dad had plans for a daily 5:30am gym time, but so far they’ve only made one of three.  I think he looks more and more like his dad as he grows – something in the nose and the way his mouth curls when he starts to laugh.  While the range of what he eats hasn’t expanded much, he’s added protein shakes and fruit smoothies.  His hair is longer than it’s ever been (“It’s the style in sports, Mom”), and is curling around his ears and along his neck.  I told him I would be fine with it if he would stay on top of the beard and mustache whiskers.  Of course, it may mean the first year he won’t want to stop for a haircut in Portland on the way to Ferry Beach.  Sigh.  There will be no missing Ferry Beach, though, even though it could mean missing the end-of-the-season championship tournament.

The last several chalice lightings have included well-played baseball and good baseball weather.  We’ve also been thankful for school’s being out, and for Sonic ice cream.  It’s summer folks – life is good.

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Posted by on June 14, 2017 in Uncategorized


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Heavens he’s grumpy

Mythankfulboy is over this whole study-for-finals thing.  Between that and another baseball loss, this time with one of his favorite people, CB, visiting to witness a not-so-stellar game, the edge has been ground off his usual enthusiastic approach to the world.  It could be hormones descending, too, but I’ll withhold judgment on that until school is out.  He’s not argumentative or sarcastic, but he’s tired and withdrawn.

I hesitated last night to start the chalice discussion, but, really, the hard nights are the most important, so I persevered.  He said he was thankful that finals were almost over, and then he sat, trying to think of something more positive (or so it appeared) and resigned himself to just not feeling it.  I was thankful to have been along the path of CB’s road trip, and for her going to B’s baseball game with us.

Now, it should be noted that B has the best bed in the house, and so it is the guest bed, making his room the guest room.  I have sleep issues that make the couch my preferred sleep spot.  That left my bed as the logical place for B to sleep last night, but he decided he’d sleep in a chair in the living room instead.  Around 3 am I woke to his repeatedly hitting his head against the arm of the chair in apparent frustration that he couldn’t sleep.  I told him to join me on the couch (I had my feet out on an ottoman, so there was space), and he trudged over with a blanket and curled up with his feet against my hip and fell asleep.  In the morning I should have gotten up earlier than I did, but he was sleeping peacefully, and I chose to savor the moment before he got up with his grumpy self.  Send him (and me) peace in these final days of finals.

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Posted by on June 8, 2017 in Uncategorized


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Minor setbacks

The first day of finals was not the happy beginning for which Mythankfulboy had hoped. He got in-class results on the first installment of his first final, a B+, but he had thought all of his preparation would yield an A, and he was discouraged.  Baseball practice was also disappointing because he ended up catching for practicing pitchers and didn’t get to hit or field.  He was still upset with his dad for making him late to practice and getting him in trouble at practice the day before, then arrived at his dad’s house after practice to find his younger stepbrother riding his (B’s) bike without asking (which involved changing the seat height and making other adjustments, an issue his dad considers to be just a typical brother thing, while B doesn’t see the boy as a brother).  He chose to spend the night there, so I can only hope that they worked out some of the sadness and frustration.

I am thankful that it is been a long time since I have had this helpless feeling in my gut around B dealing with his dad, and I’m glad that I don’t really think it is a particularly lasting issue. I’m thankful that he is concerned about his gradesu.  Still, it is a momma’s wish to never hear disappointment in her boy’s voice.  I probably should have done a text version of our chalice lighting, but I let him be.  May today be a better day. 

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Posted by on June 7, 2017 in Uncategorized


Stress, body and mind

It was a “daddy weekend”, but, thanks to baseball, I saw a good bit of Mythankfulboy.  Saturday his team had the great opportunity to play (and win!) at a minor league baseball stadium on a stunning blue-sky kinda day.  Turns out it may have been more exciting for the parents than the kids because B said, from the players’ perspective, it was just like playing at any nice field, while the parents were sitting in the stands, getting ballpark hotdogs, and listening to the announcer saying our kids’ names.  Either way, I’m glad he had the opportunity.  The next day was a rainy cold home game and a loss.  He seemed glad to head back to our house after the second game to do some studying, with today being the first day of finals week.

At the chalice lighting, he asked an interesting question.  We were talking about acne (a teenager’s nemesis), and he said he’d had clear skin for a few weeks and now not so much.  I said those changes can happen because of stress, a change in what you’re eating, sweat, touching your face too much, etc.  He said, “I don’t think I’m stressed.  Can you be stressed without knowing it?”  He said he felt prepared for his finals, even a little “pumped”, but that maybe that was its own kind of stress.  I said, excitement is its own brand of stress, especially when paired with the unknown, and that you can feel stress in your body without your mind really registering it.  He said, “Hmmm”.

He asked for what I was thankful, and I said I was thankful for having the time and materials and tools I needed to change the chain on a pendant that I bought that I loved, but the chain had been too small.  I said it was rare that all the stars aligned that way.  He said he was glad.  He said he was thankful for playing well over the weekend, and for feeling ready to head into finals week.

I have to add, because I have such a strong picture of him in my head, that we did our “chalice lighting” (sans chalice) with me seated on the couch and him in the red chair, both with our feet up.  On this cool summer day, I was snuggled under a blanket, and he was wearing sweats and a hoodie with the hood up, with barefeet on the ottoman next to his ever-present baseball glove.  How I love Mythankfulboy.

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Posted by on June 5, 2017 in Uncategorized


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Driving lesson

Lots ‘o baseball this weekend – a tournament with a couple of close games that Mythankfulboy’s team won in the end, resulting in a big team trophy and medals for each player.  I feel blessed to have my son on a team that does well and is full of nice kids with lovely parents.

On a rainy Memorial Day B and I drove a distance to a store that turns old cameras into functional lamps (oddly specific, I know) because we never seem to have a day to make it happen, and he wants to transform one of his grandfather’s cameras into something his dad can use for Father’s Day or a birthday.  We started out at Waffle House, but it was too busy, so we tried a brew pub that was closed, and then we ended up at a deli that was fantastic.  We parked right in front of the store we wanted to visit (unheard of) but it turns out they’re closed on Mondays (that explains it).  So, we visited an awesome second-hand store and then headed home.   On the way home, over a small mountain, we took a turn on a road we didn’t know to see if we could find the top of the mountain.  We did, and the view is probably amazing when there are no leaves on the trees or from the observatory we didn’t know was there (closed for Memorial Day.)  Over the mountain towards home and going through a college campus, B said, “Can I drive your car?” and before I could answer, he said, “No.  No.  Nevermind.  Forget it.”  I didn’t say anything but I pulled into a big empty parking lot and stopped, put on the emergency brake and smiled at him.   He smiled nervously and said, “Really?”  I said, “Absolutely.”  So, we switched places and he tooled us around the parking lot, trying left turns and right turns and even parallel parking along an empty curb.  He was good at it, for which he credits video games, although he’s driven a golf cart at his Grandaddy’s for years, which probably also helped.  He said his dad also let him drive his 4-wheel drive up a family mountain path, which surprised me given the need to use the 4-wheel drive to make it up, but hey – everything turned out fine.

B tried to scare up a something to do with a friend in the afternoon, but nothing panned out, so we stayed home.  I threw my back out doing laundry (sigh), so things got even quieter around our house.  After dinner, B made snickerdoodles and then went for a short run while I alternated sitting and standing, heat and cold.  Ah, the young and the old.

At the chalice lighting B asked for what I was thankful.  I said I was thankful for a day where we didn’t have any obligations, finding a new deli, a new phone case with a built- in backup battery bought at a cool second-hand store for less than ten dollars, and a weekend spent with him.   He said he was thankful for a fun weekend, for lots of baseball and playing well, and for snickerdoodles.  I said something about his first driving lesson, and he said, “What?  You didn’t teach me anything – I knew what I was doing.”  I said, “Oh, so when I told you to use your right foot for everything (not one foot on the gas and one on the brake), and when I told you to edge out just a little farther turning right than left, and when I told you to turn the wheel hard and slowly get close to the curb before turning the wheel back for parallel parking – that was all ‘on your own’?”  He chuckled.  “Okay, mostly on my own.”   My goodness I’m fond of this kid, and so thankful for time with him before he gets that license he’s thinking about…

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Posted by on May 30, 2017 in Uncategorized


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Momma’s Day and the kitchen sink

It’s been too long since I’ve put pen to paper (fingers to keys) about our evening thankfulness ritual.  Mythankfulboy’s first high school baseball season ended (not well, but better than expected given most of the juniors and seniors were thrown off the team for bad behavior), summer baseball began, bowling with friends happened, we replaced our kitchen sink ourselves (and by “ourselves” I mean B and me with routing by our sweet friend across the street, bolt-tightening by B’s dad, and advice from my dad), we rescued a baby fox that got its head caught in our batting cage netting, B had a spring cold, and Mother’s Day came and went.  For Mother’s Day, B tried to get some friends on board (at my suggestion) to do something for all the moms, but that didn’t work out, so he stole time with his dad to buy me a gift card to a restaurant I frequent with money sent to him by my mom for that purpose, to buy me a card (such sweet words) on which he wrote “Momma” in giant letters, and he announced a plan to take me out to dinner on his own dime.  The kitchen sink, though, required more attention than we had hoped, so we postponed that dinner.  My favorite thing he did, though, was replacing my morning alarm with the song Mama by LunchMoney Lewis.  There’s a lyric that says, “I could run in a race and come dead last – she say that’s my baby and stand up and clap”.  When we listened to the song together, he said, “That’s so you!”   There’s also a running background lyric in part of the song that says “Everyday is mother’s day”, and that’s how I feel waking up to that song every morning.

Along the way, among other things, we’ve been thankful for:  light homework nights, a new baseball glove, the kitchen sink, the folks that helped with the sink, the baby fox’s being okay, LunchMoney Lewis, ant traps, my pitching to B in the baseball cage, his feeling a bit better, and rain on Mother’s Day weekend (which meant no baseball – yeah, that one was mine – sorry B).

Life is good, and we are so grateful.

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Posted by on May 23, 2017 in Uncategorized


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