May 132012
 

Thank you, Tina Fey. This is Still My Favorite.  HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY TO YOU- EVERYONE OF YOU.

 

 

“First, Lord: No tattoos. May neither Chinese symbol for truth nor Winnie-the-Pooh holding the FSU logo stain her tender haunches.

May she be Beautiful but not Damaged, for it’s the Damage that draws the creepy soccer coach’s eye, not the Beauty.

When the Crystal Meth is offered, May she remember the parents who cut her grapes in half And stick with Beer.

Guide her, protect her

When crossing the street, stepping onto boats, swimming in the ocean, swimming in pools, walking near pools, standing on the subway platform, crossing 86th Street, stepping off of boats, using mall restrooms, getting on and off escalators, driving on country roads while arguing, leaning on large windows, walking in parking lots, riding Ferris wheels, roller-coasters, log flumes, or anything called “Hell Drop,” “Tower of Torture,” or “The Death Spiral Rock ‘N Zero G Roll featuring Aerosmith,” and standing on any kind of balcony ever, anywhere, at any age.

Lead her away from Acting but not all the way to Finance. Something where she can make her own hours but still feel intellectually fulfilled and get outside sometimes And not have to wear high heels.

What would that be, Lord? Architecture? Midwifery? Golf course design? I’m asking You, because if I knew, I’d be doing it, Youdammit.

May she play the Drums to the fiery rhythm of her Own Heart with the sinewy strength of her Own Arms, so she need Not Lie With Drummers.

Grant her a Rough Patch from twelve to seventeen. Let her draw horses and be interested in Barbies for much too long, For childhood is short – a Tiger Flower blooming Magenta for one day – And adulthood is long and dry-humping in cars will wait.

O Lord, break the Internet forever, That she may be spared the misspelled invective of her peers And the online marketing campaign for Rape Hostel V: Girls Just Wanna Get Stabbed.

And when she one day turns on me and calls me a Bitch in front of Hollister, Give me the strength, Lord, to yank her directly into a cab in front of her friends, For I will not have that Shit. I will not have it.

And should she choose to be a Mother one day, be my eyes, Lord, that I may see her, lying on a blanket on the floor at 4:50 A.M., all-at-once exhausted, bored, and in love with the little creature whose poop is leaking up its back.

“My mother did this for me once,” she will realize as she cleans feces off her baby’s neck. “My mother did this for me.” And the delayed gratitude will wash over her as it does each generation and she will make a Mental Note to call me. And she will forget. But I’ll know, because I peeped it with Your God eyes.”

 

- TINA FEY- BOSSY PANTS 

May 122012
 

For My Mama, Tisha

 

 

Never before have I been more excited to hit this blank page and reach out to each of you precious Monkees. This is because just like I love having written and having parented, I really love Having Flash Mobbed. PHEW. It’s done. Love Flash Mob Week is intense. Mostly for the Monkee “behind the scenes” Team – Lou, Sister, and Amy. Lou is the head of Monkee See Monkee Do. She is in constant contact with the families for MONTHS before the mob, then she and Sister execute the plan after the mob is done. Now they will spend hours upon hours haggling with van dealers to get the best possible deal for our beloved families. Their work has JUST BEGUN. Behind every magical thing is a hell of a lot of work. FAITH AND SWEAT. Kristi- I need that sign, please. Heard it in a country song, and it’s one of my life mottos. Reminds me of the tension we live in, the tension between working and resting, Being Still and Here I Am-ing! And/Both. Life’s gotta be And/Both. Faith and Sweat.

Anyway, this “team”- Lou, Sister, Amy (computer guru), Allison (creative cat), Liz (businessy person who knows letters like 403BC) and Melissa (head of international Monkee Tribes -coming your way soon! Do you have a Tribe you’d like to create in your community? We’re preparing the tools you’ll need to create your own Monkee group!) work SO hard and they work for nothing. I hope and pray that someday they WILL get paid for their Momastery work, but for now- I just send them bananas every once in a while, and they seem to stay happy. I just want to say THANK YOU, thank you, thank you to them. THANK YOU.

 

**Now I shall to reveal to you my secret motivation for Flash Mobbing. Hint- it’s not really for the recipients of our money and gifts. A little, but not really. Here’s what the Mobs are really about. Here’s a comment from Jenner:

I am embarrassed to admit that I usually don’t donate money. My family struggles so much to make ends meet that my excuse has always been that there was nothing we could spare. What little I could give would be meaningless. But momastery is changing me. It’s making me realize that I am not the only one out there who struggles. That we all need to stick together and help each other out from time to time. And that maybe that little bit that I CAN sacrifice might be bigger than I realize. So this time, I donated. And I must say I felt so much joy and freedom clicking that button. I think you’ve started something in me, Glennon. Thank you for that.  – Jenner

Jenner-
You just described  the magic of the Flash Mob. Because YOU are what this is really about.  It’s for the givers. It’s for all of us to learn how powerful we each are, how much we have to offer even with the little we have. We are all in bits and pieces and when we offer our bits and pieces -MASTERPIECES are created!!!!
Bless you – LOVE!!

 

That’s why we have the $25 limit. Because we want to emphasize that it doesn’t matter WHAT you give, just THAT you give.

Last week, I was so sick. I was in bed all day and barely had the energy to stand. I hadn’t seen my babies all day. At bedtime, Tish walked in to my bedroom and stood by my bed. I didn’t have it in me to say much, but I smiled, and hugged her big. And she smiled back and said “I love you, mama.” And then she left. I didn’t have the resources at that moment to offer her much, but I offered what I had, and it was ENOUGH. Enough to make a difference to her and to me.  I rested in that. What I have is enough to keep and enough to share. Even if it seems like I have just a little teeny bit. I just have to trust that what God has given me is enough for me and enough to share. I have to remind myself that these resources I secretly believe are scarce – love, hope, energy, money –  they’re really not. They’re renewable resources.

And so giving isn’t just for rich people or Tigger-like fundraising folks. It’s for all of us. Giving and receiving are not scary burdens, they are our purposes down here. Identifying our resources and letting them flow into us and back out…in and back out- allowing ourselves to be nothing but vessels of love and hope and energy, in and out. Accepting blessings and then letting them go . . . Not wasting the precious gift of energy by hoarding, by holding on too tight. That’s the stuff. Accepting blessings and then Letting them GO. Freedom. And when you start to trust this process, you become less afraid. Love casts out fear. What that scripture means to me is: When you let go whatever it is you are most afraid to let go , you learn the law of nature, God’s law of love, whatever you want to call it. It all returns to you ten-fold. It returns to you, in renewed hope or that power and joy that Jenner described. You learn that this is the LAW of this place we live in. Science/God same- same.  It’s just how things were designed.  Risk free giving. Everything inside of us or given to us is a renewable resource. For a perfect example- check this out.

And so we do these Mobs and we limit the donations because we need to remind ourselves that this world is OURS to change. Little by little, together. No offering, no matter how small is wasted. I’m not convinced that the SIZE of the offering has anything at all to do with its power. Remember the widow’s mite? Offer what you have. Sometimes, it’s a smile. Sometimes, that’s all you’ve got. And that is ENOUGH.

I think we get paralyzed by the needs of this world because they are so many and we think we can’t even make a dent, so we retreat. But we must remember the starfish story. A Monkee is walking down the shore picking up starfish and throwing them one at a time back in to the sea. An old woman walks up and says “Honey- You can’t possibly save all of them. There are thousands of starfish here! Millions! Do you really think you can make a difference?” And that sassy little Monkee leaned over, picked up a starfish and threw her gently into the surf. She looked up at the old woman and said, “I made a difference to that one.”

When people suggest that the world can’t be changed, I don’t think they understand.  Because “the world” is just how each person perceives the world to be. So didn’t we “change the world” for Claudia? For Mindy? For Jenner? Of course we did. When you change ONE PERSON’S beliefs about the world, you change the world. Period and forever.

“Do for one what you wish you could do for everyone.” Yes. And let us not forget, that the first person we do for is OURSELVES. We CANNOT spill out until we are filled. First things first. We must find a way to fill ourselves.  Read, write, sing, run, practice yoga, knit, pray, socialize, hide, go to therapy, buy some shoes . . . identify the thing that fills you up and do that thing for a while. Then you’ll be ready to throw starfish. And if your whole entire life, you just throw ONE starfish -that is enough. I am sure of it. If your whole entire life, you just throw one starfish -you have helped to heal the world, and I am certain that’s what we were put here to do. Not to FIX the world. Just to help heal it and ourselves, a little gentle teeny bit. And you know what- maybe you ARE the starfish.  And if you are- your job is just to make it back to the water. Or to allow yourself to be thrown.

 

So – Mother’s Day is tomorrow. The Love Flash  Mob was preparation for tomorrow.

Mother’s day is an easy day for me. I have a mother who is as close to an angel as they come.  She is by my side, literally or figuratively, every second of every day. She believes that there is NOTHING I can’t do. I have three healthy kids, so far. As far as mothering goes, tomorrow is uncomplicated for me.

But I have learned that for most folks, tomorrow is NOT uncomplicated. Because there are Monkees who have mommies that are gone. Or were never there. Or were there, but hurt them. There are Monkees whose older children are lost to depression or addiction. Whose young children are sick and not getting better. Whose children have died. Who have spent decades trying but haven’t had their children yet. There are Monkee adoptive mamas who lost their adoptions this year. There are birth mamas who gave birth and then offered another woman the ultimate gift and went home empty- armed.  There are Monkees who this very year, gave birth to babies who were already gone.

Mother’s day is brutal for many people, and I’m not going to be able to change that here. I’m just hoping that acknowledging it will help a bit.

I do want to try to explain my evolving definition of the word Mother. I am starting to understand that the word works better for me as a verb than a noun. Mothering is a choice we make, like loving is a choice.  We do not need to have given birth or to have signed adoption papers to Mother. To Mother, to me, means to nurture. To heal, to help grow, to give. And so anyone and everyone who is involved in the healing of the world is a Mother.  Anyone who tends to a child, or friend, or stranger, or animal or garden is a Mother. Anyone who tends to Life is a Mother. Tomorrow is a celebration of all the healers and hopers and lovers and givers and tend-ers.  In other words- tomorrow is for every single one of you Monkees.

And if your mother did her best but it wasn’t good enough. Or if she didn’t even try… I think you need a mother anyway. I think we all need one. And so I think what we have to do is create that mother, that one we always wanted and needed. We need to change her voice from critical and hurtful to encouraging and kind. We need to create that woman who loves us above all others, who will catch us when we fall, who will soothe us and tell us that It Is Going To Be Allright. We must find the most encouraging, loving, forgiving, adoring voice we can imagine and put it in our hearts. And then we need to practice listening for Her voice. We must check in with that voice several times a day until her voice drowns out all the others. If we have not been mothered well, we need to mother ourselves well. It IS hard, near impossible, but we can do impossible things. The most important person to Mother is ourselves. Let’s celebrate that tomorrow, too. Let’s celebrate the Art of Mothering  - tending to ourselves and those around us –  whomever those may be.

I love you, Monkees. Happy Mother’s Day. Thank you for making dreams come true with me this week.

Love,

G