Saturday, January 31, 2009

Is it meme because it's all about me-me-me-me.... ?

Another FB meme. Participate if you like!

Yes. I am aware that there are two number elevens. What the heck!

1. My husband and I had the best honeymoon ever. Seriously. An old van, a cooler full of wedding party leftovers (like Michele's carrot cake and Texas Caviar and hot chicken), a trash bag full of carved pumpkins to launch into the Universe with a prayer and a vow each night of camping, a whole lotta love and many many many miles along highways and byways. We encountered an Autumnal heat wave, cool crisp air in the Smokies, extreme fog on the Blue Ridge Parkway, a wire downing ice storm in Pennsylvania, snow at Niagra Falls. We quested to find Punxatawney Phil (he lives in the public library) and I made a song about it. We saw an Amish man buying a Yoo-hoo at a 7 11 and have laughed about it for years. We saw a camp site overrun with rabbits of every color and size, ate lots of chicken, slept in the van all crumped up under Mexican blankets with an air mattress beneath us, and had crappy coffee pilfered from the lodge at the Peaks of Otter. I loved every wonderful minute of that experience and cleave to the memory of that kind of love and enthusiasm when things are hard, as they inevitably are in any marriage now and again.

2. I knew my husband for quite awhile before I fell in love with him.

3. The first time he kissed me, he smelled like bonfire and home. A magnolia blossom burst out of my chest. I closed the door on him and nearly fainted.

4. I always wanted to be a mother. Becoming one has been even better than I could ever have dreamed.

5. If I had it to do over, I'd have started my family earlier. And I'd have had a passel of kids.

6. I still dream of living on a farm. I want chickens, guinea foul, peacocks and fainting goats and gardens and a bunch of foster kids.

7. I am still trying to find the spiritual path that fits. There is no question that this is central to my life. I appreciate that even though my husband doesn't share this in full, he supports it. I am drawn to expressions of God in nature, tradition, community. Sometimes in formal church settings, often not. Lately, my family and I have been attending Belmont United Methodist Church. My husband and I both grew up in the UMC; in the years since having left my parents' house, I have also attended Unity churches, Unitarian Universalist churches and Friends Meeting with some regularity. (There were also several months in Seattle during a difficult divorce that I attended an evening Celtic Eucharist weekly.) I am still, however, nominally a member of First United Methodist Church in Oak Ridge. Finding the answer isn't nearly as important to me as making the journey and being open to the conversation.

8. I don't think I've become who I'm meant to be. Yet. I have a lot before me....

9. I'd love to have another child. But I'm getting older, and my husband doesn't share this wish. And times are a bit trying.

10. I have always loved odd numbers.

11. My favorite number is 9, divisible by 3, 3 times.

11. My favorite time on a digital clock is 3:33.

12. That there are 3 people in our family is a lovely thing.

13. If we are to have one and only one, our boy is exactly the perfectly right one.

14. I can not believe how much I love him, and how much he takes my breath away. I tear up even typing this. I know his father feels precisely the same way.

15. I do cry fairly easily. But honestly.

16. I sincerely wish my son could have known my grandmothers, Gertrude & Zona.

17. His middle name, Temple, was my paternal grandfather's first name (after Sam Houston's son, of course) and it was also my father's sister's name. This part of his name pays homage to my Deep East Texas heritage.

18. When I was born, in Rochester NY, it was the middle of a blizzard. Gertrude came to town to help my mother with her first baby. I went home from Rochester General to the apartment my folks had in town and photographs from that time show them looking so young and gangly and happily surprised. They are both from Panola County in East Texas and were in a land far from home, doing something at that time unknown to their experience. It must have been frightening and exciting. All the same, at my father's hand, my feet first touched ground on East Texas soil. I know of two other Texan families who've done something similar.

19. I have lived in Rochester, NY; Albuquerque, NM; Damascus, MD; Danville, CA; Oak Ridge, TN; Chattanooga, TN; Chicago; South Pittsburg, TN; Mercer Island, WA and Nashville, TN. I also include Panola County, TX as I spent my childhood summers there where my mother helped run her parents' country grocery and Sinclair gasoline station.

20. I have traveled to most every state in this United States, and also Mexico, Canada, England, and Scotland. I need to get to Nebraska. And Utah, I think. (oh, also Alaska.) I'd also like to spend time in India. And Thailand. And pretty much everywhere.

21. I went to public school all the way through: three elementary schools (four if you count summer school musical theatre and journalism), one junior high, and two high schools.

22. I am FaceBook friends with almost all my ex boyfriends that are not deceased. I don't have as many of them as some. I think I have stayed on good terms with most, though I've never made it habit to be in touch in a heavy way.

23. I have always been fortunate to have really dear friends who I love so much. I have also lost some of those friends through old hurts and missteps. Where possible, I try to repair those. I am not always successful.

24. My husband still makes me laugh more than almost anyone. Lately, our "date nights" are getting up from our family bed once the boy is snoring and curling up on the couch to talk and watch borrowed episodes of Deadwood. We crack each other up with our creative use of foul language as used in the show. He rubs my feet. I kiss him as often as he lets me.

25. I try to do something that scares me each day, and to live by the Golden Rule and the twelve steps, and to practice radical hospitality. I just think they are good ways to live for pretty much everyone. I fail often. But I try try try. Again, and again. I think it's worth it.


  1. Anonymous7:28 AM

    i will never, ever tire of the story that is you.

  2. Paige, I love these lists. You've plumbed deep. I might not ever play along but what struck me on first reading this is that this is the kind of information and story that genealogists love. Here is hoping that the mists of the internet are indeed long-frozen because Ziggy's grandkids would love to read this information, warts (or skin tags?) and all. Especially little vignettes like your honeymoon and your grandparents' store and the etymology of the name Temple in your family.


  3. thank you, old friend. i feel the same looking at and hearing you and yours.

    and thank you, too, el. kind words.

    i find myself with suddenly rather a lot to get down. whether for preservation for the small man and his get (one of the big man and my prenup promises was that i be archivist) or to keep me mostly even and sane, i'm not sure. but the lists work well for me to dive right in, and unlike those who torture themselves and take an hour or two to complete them, my flying fingers can hardly keep up with my thought. perhaps i am self obsessed, perhaps it's just all there and needs an outlet. either way, here it is. and i find myself better, enriched, and more truly grateful for the loves and experiences of my life when i do find where this thought leads to that....