Category Archives: Family Time

To Wyatt

Wyatt,

Often times I can’t find the perfect words to let you know how much I love you!  It seems impossible to write how proud I am of you and the life you are creating!

I watched you walk through the doors of school this morning and I couldn’t help but smile with pride.  You are a witty, handsome, intelligent young man.  Daily I am reminded how much I love you.  Each story you write, each game you explain, each silly commentary of life you make are reminders of how clever you really are.  Sometimes I feel like you are growing up too quickly, but watching you evolve into a man has been one of the greatest journey’s of my life.  When I hear you speak of mature subjects with an understanding of their concepts I’m in awe!  When I find you investigating the “truth” of information I am stunned by your fortitude to question everything.

I want you to know that you are so special to me.  As the years pass and you continue on your journey of self discovery I am amazed by you!  I want to hug you and never let you go!

But most of all Wyatt, I want you to know that I love you for YOU!  I hold no expectations of whom or what you should be.  I only expect that you stay true to yourself.  Never allow someone else’s idea of what you should be interfere with your journey of discovering yourself.  I truly mean it when I tell you; I will ALWAYS love you, no matter how your life turns out.

Isn’t it exciting to figure yourself out?  Isn’t it exciting that you have boarded the ship of life and you get to be the captain of that ship?

Of course I know you and I will weather rough waters on occasion, but Wyatt, those will be the moments that will help define our friendship.  Even the choppy seas teach us how to be better captains.  I will be right next to you, never abandoning ship.  I will ALWAYS be right next to you, loving you and being proud of who you are.

 

Love,

Mom

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Filed under Family Time, My kids, My kids ROCK!!!, My thoughts

Midway Swimming

Starlings sing over sparkling chlorinated waters.

Quarters plop and bubble to the bottom of the pool.

Her oversized goggles assist in tales of water monsters.

Scattered flies entangled in her hair are the only obstacles.

Yet diving for silver becomes more important than hygiene.

 

Peels of laughter echo off the concrete resort,

Giving competition to the cries of hungry birds.

Slappy, soggy feet give away your stealthy mind

In a bout of hide and seek.

 

New friends are made in imagination and buoyant warm waters.

Common goals keep you all bound together.

Find the quarter first and the prize is

Getting to do it all over again.

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Ode to Summer

I want to write, but what is there to say that hasn’t been spoken?  Wouldn’t I just be crafting a work of art that would be considered Mimetic?

Often times, while sitting in my white pillared, warm and worn home, I stare out the front window.  Through this looking glass I’m presented with big green leaves that are kissed by the sun, the gossip of robins and caws of unseen crows.  The old tree, with his bark stained chocolate brown with age, bends to and fro in the breeze of the summer afternoon.  The chitchat of the neighborhood provides a low hum as the afternoon sun burns, slowly sinking to the west.

In these moments of normality I often question what more is there to write about? What is more beautiful then an afternoon summer?

It couldn’t be the stark boney fingers of the Maple tree protruding into the grey skies.  It couldn’t be the harrowing cries of wind pushing the brown crunchy leaves across the road.  And with great confidence I declare, it couldn’t possibly be the screech of metal shovels pushing aside the slushy tears of Mother Nature.

Summer allows us to embrace nature, to sit with her, caress her golden braids of light and dive into the warmth of her waters.  Summer allows for naked feet to massage her back and for hands to grip her as they aspire to climb to new perspective.  Summer is living.

Perhaps there would be those that disagree, and who am I to say their opinions are wrong?  However, I’d say that those people would rather argue these points on a friendly porch, with slices of lemon wedges adorning their drinks.  Sitting on Adirondack chairs of youth and flipped flopped feet, we’d lock horns on it’s worth.  Quarrelling in the cumbersome costumes of winter would dampen the mood.  We can agree that most would rather sip on foamy beer, in tank tops, and debate over a sizzling BBQ than sip on unreliable ciders and wait for the electric glow of appliances.

Summer, my heart grows wane and murky while you vacation.  You know I will wait as patient as possible, and upon your return, I will shower you with laughter and late night visits.  I will stoke your heart with stories over fire pits and warm your mind with gooey marshmallows.  Most of all, I’ll show my kids how to treat you with care so that you will continue to return and teach them how too love as deeply as a Shepherd’s Tree.

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To Wyatt and Cheyenne

I want to feed you the whole world

Not missing out on one little bite.

You can’t walk, in your blanket curled

So instead we’ll take a trip by flight.

Riding through the universe on a friend

I’ll feed all this to you by hand with love.

And should you find that you need a mend

I’ll always be by your side, silent as a dove.

When you shed your innocent wings

And your feet stand on solid ground

I’ll still be around to hear your things

For I will not be far, I’ll always be found.

And then you can feed me your world

While I’m in my old blanket feeble and curled.

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To Jenny

She’s an oak, that’s time tested

She has stood with me in every storm.

Just when the wave has crested,

She is my life raft, safely returning me to my dorm

There isn’t a day that goes by

That I don’t think of her generosity.

If I didn’t have her I’d surely die.

She is cat like in her curiosity

She takes nothing for granted

And lives each day to the fullest

Nothing is black or white her world is slanted.

She even tolerates fools, even the dullest

Mind she is grateful.  She sees worth

In every human spirit.

In her I find re-birth.

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Sonny Ricks

“What’s so new about Mexico”?

That is the question Sonny posed to me while driving down Washington Blvd.  Though I was no geography expert, at 16 I knew the states pretty well.  I was laughing, assuming he was making a joke.  When I turned to look at him he was staring at me seriously.  “Are you being serious?”  I said laughing.  “Yes!  What the hell is so new about Mexico?”  I couldn’t breath I was laughing so hard.  “Sonny, it’s a state!”  I replied.  “No it’s not.”  Sonny was two years my senior and definitely a smart guy.  Why this failed to make sense to him still has me laughing today.  He didn’t believe that New Mexico was a state until I went home (to my parents house) and looked it up in the set of encyclopedias my parents owned.  Even then he thought it was some conspiracy against him.

Or the time he came home from the police academy and was complaining of his calf hurting.  We looked and he had two small red marks on his calf.  Sonny looked at me with all sincerity and said, “I think a snake bit me.”  I started to roll around on the carpet in laughter and said, “You didn’t get bit by a snake.”  Sonny’s retorted, “You DON’T KNOW, you’ve never been bitten by a snake!!”  I was in tears from laughter and said, “…Neither have you!”

Sonny always had the ability to make me laugh.  His sense of humor was off the wall and his wit was quick.  We spent so many hours just driving around and talking about what we were going to be when we grew up.  We’d listen to police scanners, knowing that this would help us learn the 10 codes, and just dream of the day we’d become cops.  For me it was a way to show every teacher that said I couldn’t be a cop I could, but for Sonny it was a way to help those less fortunate.

When Sonny was finally hired on as Salt Lake City Police it was one of his most proud moments.  Unfortunately it would be our marriages downfall.

I met him when I was 13, married when I was 21 and divorced when I was 22.  Those 9 years were pivotal in shaping who am I today.  We both taught each other so much about life and though he couldn’t take the strain of living anymore, I’ll always remember him as the “Dr. Pepper” guy.  It wasn’t until our divorce that Sonny turned to alcohol to medicate his emotional traumas.

In our numerous conversations in the last few years I would encourage him to get help.  Hell, I even wrote to the TV show Intervention hoping they could give him the help the rest of us couldn’t.  But in true Sonny fashion he refused help and bull headedly claimed he was doing fine.  But those of us that really knew him where aware this was a lie.  Knowing the pains he suffered as a child, the pain of our divorce, the suicide of his wife clearly led me to believe that Sonny, yet again, was suffering.

I’d take his calls at 2am and listen to his woes.  I’d listen to him speak about work, the meaning of life, the downfall of people in general.  In all of this I’d know, and tell Sonny, that he was hurting.  On numerous occasions I told him that he was acting tough when he just wanted to be weak.  Most times he’d mock me for saying such things, but I stood strong in my opinion and usually, he’d concede that he was lost.

He’d ask me over and over why I loved life.  I’d try to explain that it’s the people, groups we involve ourselves in and passion for anything that keeps people going.  I tried explaining that his love of animals could be a passion.  I told him to volunteer to anything he liked, but he just didn’t seem ready to involve himself in anything.

We spoke frankly about Aimee (his wife who committed suicide) and on most occasions he’d try to down play this traumatic event.  Well downplay isn’t the word, he’d try to act as though he were ok with it.  We all knew better.

 

On Dec. 16th I got a text from a friend that grew up with us asking if I’d heard about Sonny.  Immediately I knew.  I knew that the burden of living was just too much for Sonny and that he had taken his own life.  When it was confirmed that he was dead I didn’t even need to ask how, I knew.  I’d known for years that Sonny wasn’t meant to remain here with all the trauma he’d endured in his short life.  But even knowing this, I couldn’t help but wonder if I’d done everything I could for him.  Could I have called more often?  Could I have had him over at the house more?  Could I have text him each day to make sure he was ok?

And then reality hit me.  It wouldn’t have mattered.  None of those things would have helped Sonny.  Those things would have helped me cope better.  Only Sonny could help Sonny and he was tired of trying.  And truly, who am I to judge another person and their decisions?  Who am I to say this was the wrong decision for him?  Selfishly I wish he would have chosen some other way to cope, but that’s not for me to decide right?  Selfishly I want to get more phone calls from Sonny (even the annoying early morning ones).  Selfishly I wish I could have had the perfect words to change Sonny’s life.  But none of us have this power.

So with tears in my eyes I will say goodbye to you.  I still have every single letter we ever exchanged, and when I won’t become a slobbering mess, I’ll go through them and think of you when you were happy.  I have a lock of your hair, and I’ll touch it remembering how safe you used to feel.  I still have a motorcycle key from the accident, and I’ll remember how endearing and protecting you were when tragedy struck.  I still have every picture from every high school dance and I’ll protect and preserve them for the remainder of my days.  But most of all, I have 9 years of incredible memories from when we were kids to becoming adults.  I had ALL my firsts with you.  First road trip, first dinners out, first date, first hand holding, and my first sexual experiences.  You’re an amazing man Sonny and my life would never have been the same without you.  Thank you for loving me.  I consider myself lucky that I had the chance to love you back!

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Becki Woldberg Hadley

Truly, where do I begin?  My first memories of my life include you.  I can remember you were a constant in my youth.  I think I was one when we met and I can’t remember a time running through the neighborhood without you and Kelli.

One of my favorite memories was climbing up your mom’s linen closet to the little hide out/kid playroom stashed behind all the towels.  If I remember correctly you had a small table and chairs and a light with a string attached too it.  It smelled like mothballs and dust, but it was filled with giggles and plans of trouble (you know, big trouble like devising a plan to ride our bikes when it was dark out.)

I remember hide and seek, ding dong ditching and jump rope.  I remember your sister reading me Edgar Allan Poe when I was nine and since that time I’ve read him with an obsession!  I remember you playing mamba at our house and whipping your head so fast that you hit the corner of our piano chair with your forehead.

And who can forget the big wheel races in the basement?  Hitting the brakes so quickly it would whip us around in a 360!  And the big ass queen bed that we would all snuggle into when our parents were shit faced!

With all sincerity those were some of the best times of my life!  That carefree attitude with friends is what we still crave in our adult lives.

I still try to understand why it all fell apart when Kelli died.  Perhaps our parents’ seeing each other was just too much of a reminder of the past.  Perhaps we didn’t know what to say.  Perhaps it’s just a part of life to fall away from one another, but I know that you will always have a piece of me, and I’ll have a piece of you … my god, we were practically sisters!  Though it’s been ages since I’ve seen you, you truly are a part of me I carry and think about everyday!

Thank you Becki for being such a huge part of my life growing up and helping shape me into who I am today!

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