Random ramblings of a Rose…

Posts tagged ‘Jose’

Jose’s Dream (09/07/2015)

We’ve been talking a lot about dreams recently, because I have a ton of wild and crazy ones and I like to share them. Earlier this month, Jose came to me and said, “Mom, I had a really weird dream I want to tell you about.” So I said, “Sure!” I’ve copied it word for word (there’s lots of ‘um’s and ‘like’s – he’s 9 and big into verbal pauses – we’re working on it, lol), and meant to share it a couple weeks ago but it totally slipped my mind. I’m sure that never happens to anyone else. 😉

At any rate, here’s Jose’s dream:

“Okay. So we were like going on a trip to Texas, on an airplane. Um, so that guy who was going to, like, fly the plane, for some reason, he told you to fly it to our house. For some reason – into the driveway. Um…

And so… And so when we got there, it was like nighttime because it was evening when we started. And then, so, the guy that….

So when you started off flying, you were on the road, and you kind of… Since you didn’t know how to fly, really, it was only a little ways. We were on the road up by school, and on that split part, that’s where you were. You were driving and then you lifted up and you kept going straight and somehow you got to our house? And um…

When he flew, for some reason, there was people on our plane. Like, there wasn’t when you were flying, but there was now. And like it was morning and we were someplace else, now. And like, he flew straight up very fast, and then he went straight, and then he went straight down, and then he finally started flying regular. But he wasn’t exactly up in the clouds like he was.

And then we landed somewhere for some reason, so… When we landed, like the airplane…. I’m not sure if we got out, but we were in the middle of a desert so there was no town so I’m not sure if we were IN the airplane, but there was this really fancy town that looked like it was London or something. And then…um… So…

And then I appeared in this building, but I was friends with the Penguins from like the Madagascar movies and that penguin movie. But for some reason, two of them had three eyes and the other just had two. [It’s just a goat, it’s just a goat. NOT A GOAT, NOT A GOAT! **laughs**]

And then we were planning up something to go do and after, I was just walking around the town. So while we were doing that, there was just someone that like I saw and talked to, but I don’t remember anything else like getting back on the plane, so that was basically the end of my dream.

But then I was like daydreaming because I was awake and daddy came and asked me if that was the biggest football I had ever seen. So I went to pick it up, but then I realized I was like, doing it in real life? [**mimics pushing self up in bed**] So I flopped back down and I was all warm and comfy so I tried to go back to sleep, but it was already the time I was going to get up.”

The end. 😀

P.S. Here’s updated pictures of Jose. When he saw them, he said, “Mom! I look so old!” **sigh** I know the feeling, kid. 😥

© Jess Legaspi // www.jesslegaspi.com //jess@jesslegaspi.com

© Jess Legaspi // http://www.jesslegaspi.com //jess@jesslegaspi.com

© Jess Legaspi // www.jesslegaspi.com //jess@jesslegaspi.com

© Jess Legaspi // http://www.jesslegaspi.com //jess@jesslegaspi.com

P.P.S. The goat thing was a Zathura reference, just in case you didn’t catch that.

My Son’s Brain is Beautiful

I love the way Squishy thinks. Earlier, he suddenly remembered something. He grabbed my arm, said, “C’mon, mom! I HAVE to show you something!” and practically dragged me out of the house to the side-yard.

It was already dark outside, so I told him I couldn’t see anything unless I had a flashlight. He said, “No, mom! It’s okay! I can still show you. You just have to see with your feet!”

He wanted me to “see” that Jose had spent a good part of the day tilling up the hard, packed dirt in the side-yard and had already made a large patch of soft fluffy dirt. It didn’t matter to him that there was no light for the work to be visible with my eyes. He knew that the important difference was the change in texture & that I only needed my feet to see that.

And he was so VERY proud of what Jose had done that he HAD to show me RIGHT NOW, rather than waiting for morning.

The Fabulous Flying Jose

The Fabulous Flying Jose

The Laughing Leaping Squishy

The Laughing Leaping Squishy

Validation

I want to talk about something today, folks. You probably guessed it from my title, because I didn’t make any attempt to camouflage it. Validation. Specifically the definition: to recognize or affirm the worth of a person or their feelings or opinions. Let me start out by saying that I am completely aware of the fact that validation isn’t necessary, and that sometimes seeking it makes one feel worse about him/herself than just being content, regardless of others’ thoughts on the matter. However, as this topic specifically pertains to my boys – Jose, now almost 9, and Squishy, rapidly approaching 6 – I have to say that I am getting REALLY tired of people in their lives only deigning to offer validation (or finding it necessary to pass uninvited judgment) as long as I’m made aware of one *VERY IMPORTANT* (said with supreme sarcasm on my part) thing:

Their likes/dislikes, desires, dreams, activity choices, etc. may indicate that **gasp** (horror of horrors) they might possibly be gay or fall somewhere on the spectrum not strictly in the MANLY MEN camp.

You know, yeah – maybe that’s true. Maybe as they get older, they will come to me and let me know that they believe that to be the case about themselves. But guess what? And I’m speaking to BOTH (or should that be all?) sides here: THERE IS NOT ONE DAMN THING WRONG WITH THEM IF THEY ENJOY LIVING THE WAY THEY DO AND THEY ARE STRAIGHT, AS WELL. When did it become a rule that nail painting, wanting to do mommy’s hair & makeup, loving My Little Pony, being disappointed we’re not getting the new Tinker Bell movie RIGHT NOW, playing dress up & dancing in a tutu, participating in gymnastics, choosing pink as a favorite color or Queen Elsa as a favorite character, wearing a headband or hair clips – any of these things (or more) – are exclusive privileges awarded only to boys who may be gay/bi/anything other than cismale?
boysIf you are the well meaning more-liberal-than-I friend/family member who sits me down and gently discusses with me the possibility that my son may turn out to be gay in order to give me time to “prepare for that future” and, “What would you do if that were the case?”: thank you, but I really wouldn’t change a damn thing. If they’re gay (etc.) then they’re gay. It will not change how much I love them, my wants, wishes, and desires for them to have a blessed life, whether or not they are welcome in my home, etc. Pretty much all of you know that I am a moderately conservative Christian, so yes, I hold certain biblical beliefs that I may wrestle with regarding the topic, but none of that will change the fact that Jose and Squishy are MY SONS. They were given to me by our Creator God and I do not for one second doubt that He is in ultimate control of everything. So why would I need to worry and fret (which the Bible specifically labels as sin, by the way) about something that was never mine to be anxious over in the first place?

If you are the concerned more-conservative-than-I friend/family member who sits me down and lovingly states that hubby & I need to take a firmer hand in the choices our sons make, because in letting them make their own decisions more often than not, we are letting them choose a slippery slope: I’m sorry, but you’re wrong. There is not one single passage in the Bible that leads me to believe in any way, shape, or form that ANY of the choices our sons have made that we have allowed/upheld are ungodly or sinful. They are CHILDREN. They are supposed to explore & discover, lead by us and their other guardians, and Jose wearing leg warmers to ballet class or Squishy loving & wanting to keep his long hair is not going to create something in them that wasn’t there to begin with. It just doesn’t happen that way. And you know, I have to say that the Jesus I read about in the Bible isn’t someone who beat up on his disciples, watched porn, and fired assault rifles to prove his manliness to those around him. So when you tell me that I need to “toughen up my boys” and “let them be men,” I have to wonder if you’d have told Mary the same thing? And in case you’re worried about their spiritual relationship with God, don’t. You recall that time when Christ displayed anger in a physical manner – like we expect men to do – turning over the tables in the temple and kicking everyone out in righteous indignation for the mockery made of his Father’s house? I can GUARANTEE you that Jose & Squishy would be more than happy to participate in that sort of “manly” activity on God’s behalf. They love the Lord deeply and fully and the suggestion that they can’t possibly be true Men of God if they enjoy traditionally “female” things is ludicrous.

And if you’re the snooty, judgmental, self-righteous person on either side of this debate who wants to look down your nose at me because I’m CLEARLY screwing my kids up for life: leave. Seriously. We don’t need you in our lives. To the room mother surprised that my Christian-school-attending son would be in gymnastics, last time I checked, the entire male Olympic gymnastics team wasn’t gay (and you know damn well you’d still watch the Olympics and root for them, even if they were, so please keep your hypocrisy to yourself). To the former friend who joked how I was going to be so lucky to have shopping buddies to keep me up to date on current fashions when my boys are older (because **wink, wink, nudge, nudge** they’re obviously going to be open to that sort of thing given their proclivities), how dare you? You grew up feeling like you couldn’t be yourself because of how others might judge you and you were terrified to come out, but you automatically pigeonhole my boys because they make effeminate choices sometimes? Isn’t that JUST as bad?
2015-03-14 14.16.21So please, if you are going to give validation for my boys choices, give it because you love them. Because it makes them happy. Because they enjoy what they’re doing. Etc. Don’t only validate them because you think they’re going to need the support. Don’t only validate them because you think you know what their future holds. And don’t WITHHOLD validation from them because you think the choices we have allowed them to make aren’t “manly” enough, especially for “good Christian boys.” And if you can’t deal with these guidelines, then please just keep it to yourself. We don’t need, or want, false validation or self-righteous judgment. Modifying Thumper’s Rule here a bit: “If you don’t have anything nice and genuine to say, don’t say anything at all.” Because it’s gotten old.

Thank you.

Christmas Pictures!!!

So, Jose and Squishy had a mini-session for Christmas photos with the lovely and talented Jess Legaspi (http://www.jesslegaspi.com/). Got the proofs back today and wanted to share our faves. 💚💙🎄❄️
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Pray that I actually manage to get these on cards and sent out this year… 😂😂😂

“I Can’t Control It!”

I know it’s been far too long since I’ve written anything, so I won’t even try to cover everything I’ve missed. But I was inspired to write tonight, so here I am.
This is Squishy:

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Yes, he’s changed quite a bit since the last picture I posted, but he’s still the same crazy little boy he always was. He’s five years old now and in kindergarten. Loves mud and mess-making, being wild and rambunctious, babbles constantly and can’t keep his hands to himself. He can read and write well enough that it scares me a little, lol, and he’s passionate about singing and creating art (typically abstract, but that’s just his style.) He’s also incredibly sensitive, empathetic and intuitive, feels deeply, and understands concepts sometimes beyond his years. (For example, he knew *SPOILER ALERT* Tadashi was dead in Big Hero 6 even though I had to explain it to Jose.)

Squishy wants EVERYONE to be loved, even villains. He feels badly when they are hurt or destroyed, and just wants everyone to be happy. His favorite character in Frozen was Marshmallow – the big snow monster – and it made him happy for DAYS that Marshmallow found Elsa’s crown at the end of the credits. (Conversely, he was NOT happy when Marshmallow was melted by Regina on Once Upon a Time – I told him Elsa could just remake him another time…) When I asked him last October if he thought the actor Pablo Schreiber was a bad man (I happened to be reading an article where Pablo stated that he was currently the most hated man on TV, after season 1 of OITNB, and given his role at the time on Law & Order: SVU), Squishy looked at Pablo’s picture and deliberated for a few moments before announcing, “No. He’s my friend. I like him.” Since then, he has communicated with him several times through YouTube, Twitter and Instagram, even defending him against naysayers by reminding them that it’s just pretend and Pablo would never hurt anyone. Squishy loves EVERYONE and wants them to know it. And he wants everyone to love each other as well.

But sometimes Squishy forgets to love himself. And tonight was one of those nights. Earlier in the evening, he’d made a not so great choice when he was asked to clean up. He took the box of Lego creations Jose and he had made, that had been set in there carefully so as to not be destroyed before they could work on them on the future, and shook it back-and-forth as hard as he could because he was angry that Jose had taken the other box and left him with this one. In the process, of course, he destroyed most of what was in there – everything will have to be re-created and rebuilt. But we moved on with our evening without any great mishap. We had baths and dinner, watched Once Upon a Time, and the boys went to bed.

It wasn’t until about an hour after he gone to bed that I realized Squishy was crying. And this wasn’t “look at me! look at me!” crying, this was deep, heartfelt, sorrowful tears of regret. I went in and got in bed with him and asked him what was wrong. And he just held me and cried and said that he couldn’t stop thinking about the Lego creations he had ruined when he shook the box back-and-forth. He told me that he was just so upset because he knew that Jose would’ve been careful with that box but Jose didn’t listen when he asked him to take it. So he shook the box on purpose to show that he couldn’t be trusted with things that break. And now he felt terrible. He sobbed into my shoulder and said, “I couldn’t control my anger mommy. It’s just too quick and I can’t stop it!”

Oh, my little man. He does so break my heart sometimes! I stayed with him for awhile, and we talked. I shared a story of a time I was his age and I let my anger get the best of me. I wanted to show him that he wasn’t alone. Squishy calmed down while we talked, and he asked if he could say a prayer with me. He prayed for help with his anger, and that he wouldn’t ruin his Lego things next time. He hugged me and held on for what seemed like forever, and we told each other over and over that we loved one another, and finally he was ready to let go. Then he went to sleep within five minutes of me leaving the room.

And this just made me think tonight, that we all need to stop sometimes and listen. Listen for the cries of another who needs to talk, even if they’re not actually making any noise. Reach out to someone if you can see that they’re hurting. If they’ve changed recently and you’re not sure why, just see if they need a friend. Sometimes people simply want to know that they’re not alone. They need to be reminded that they’re loved. Yes, Squishy could’ve come out of his room and asked to talk with me, but sometimes that’s a really hard thing to do. I’m sure he was afraid if he got out of bed that he would be in trouble. Just like we are so often afraid of a negative reaction if we reach out to those around us when we desperately need to talk to someone.

If I had been listening to music or watching a show with my headphones on tonight (as I so often do in the evenings) and not heard him crying, who knows how long Squishy would’ve laid in there, sobbing tears of anguish and broken-heartedness before he cried himself to sleep?? I wouldn’t have gotten the chance to know his heart a little more and see what he was feeling. I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to share a part of me with him. There’s certainly nothing wrong with me listening to music or watching a show, but because I was present and able, I was there for him in exactly the way he needed.

So my prayer for all of you as you read this, is that you, too, might have the chance to stop what you’re doing and listen, and see if you can help another. And if you are the one who needs help, needs to be listened to, needs a shoulder to cry on and an understanding heart, my prayer is that someone will do just that for you. And to everyone: PLEASE REMEMBER TO LOVE YOURSELVES. You are worth it.

Happy first Sunday of Advent, 2014. Blessings, peace, and love to all of you.

Blessing/Curse

Sometimes I hate the brain my children inherited from me. Being intelligent and slightly crazy is a lot of fun and a blessing most of the time, but it can also be a very real curse. Squishy is prone to vivid, often terrible dreams. He has had them probably since infancy as he would wake up screaming and trembling even back then. He just called out to me; when I went to him he told me he had a “horrible” dream:

“We were at Badi’s house. There was a ship next to Badi’s house. My brother got trapped inside and he died. It was horrible. Then Daddy and I drove in a car to the store to get glove-mittens. The glove-mittens were already Daddy’s but he had to get them from the store. He needed them to work on Badi’s house and our house. Then we went back to Badi’s house. Then we went home, and my brother was still dead.”

I don’t put much stock in dream interpretation, but I wish I knew why he dreams things like this so I could help him…

Well, it’s not June!

So, at the close of my last update (around 10 months ago) I hoped that my next blog post wouldn’t happen this June. Well, it’s not June! Oh, dear. I have such good intentions for journals, I really do. And I LOVE buying them, holding them in my hands, looking at them, etc. I’m just terrible at writing in them. I had hoped that doing something on the computer would be more conducive to regular entries, but apparently I was wrong. **sigh** Lol.

Well, here’s a little bit about Jose and Squishy, since they’re the reason I’m here!
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Jose is 7 and in 2nd grade now. He was SUPER anxious about going back to school this year (for the first time ever), but has really jumped into things now that he’s there. After the first day of school, he told Daddy, “Second grade is THE BEST!!! I still don’t want to be back to school, but 2nd grade is the best!” 2nd grade is also a lot tougher, come to find out, though he’s rising admirably to the challenge. Honestly, I think 2nd grade is going to be harder for us as parents than it will be for him, simply because we’re really having to start being active and proactive about making sure that everything is done and that we are assisting him in all the areas we need to be doing so. It’s not beating him down at all, but for me it’s being rather overwhelming. Huge, HUGE drawback to having two full-time working parents, honestly. Because, yes, that’s what the position I took last year has turned into. And I know it’s a God thing, but I’m questioning and struggling with how having this job is going to affect our family and especially Jose’s schooling. Back to Jose, though. He’s doing AR again, and will have the test soon to determine the correct level for him to be focusing on this year. This is also the first year that AR will be part of his reading grade. His teacher is a wonderful lady whose children I watched during my time at the YMCA and I am so happy he got her. He’s with his best friend again this year – another blessing. He’s also been seeing Dr. Beth off and on again to help with how the pressures of everything that’s happened in the past couple of years is bearing down on him. We’ve made behavioral changes, nutritional changes, attitude changes, etc. All in all, I’m pretty pleased with how those things have helped guide him back to a mental path where he feels more secure and able to take on the world with the correct reactions. My only issue right now is a strange lack of communication from Dr. Beth herself, which has never been a problem in the past. Working to resolve that now, but I’m worried that if this continues, it will be negative for Jose. But it’s in God’s hands and that’s where I’ll try to leave it. Outside of all that jazz, Jose has also taken up piano and gymnastics, both of which he has a great love and good deal of talent for. I don’t know where either one of those will take him, if anywhere, but for now, it’s enough that he enjoys what he’s doing. He’s also going to be taking the after-school art classes again at least twice this year. He’s currently enrolled in one of the fall sessions, and he’s planning to attend one in Jan/Feb with his best friend. The two of them are also participating in the school’s elementary art club which is in charge of several art installations which will be going up around campus.

Squishy is a bundle of energy and sunshine – in his 2nd year of preschool (actually considered a Pre-K class due to the material they’ll be working on) and will be having class half-day for the 1st semester and full-day for the second to help prepare for kindergarten next year. Life events have started to cause definite character formation in him, though he is still really working on discovering who he is. He is kind, sweet, and sensitive, but he is all boy and reacts in mind-boggling fashion sometimes to the world around him, lol. He is funny as can be, just like his brother before him, but sometimes a lack of filter gets him in trouble… One thing that has really developed and become apparent in him is just how deeply he feels. It isn’t so much that he wears his heart on his sleeve, but rather that his heart is an endless well, which honestly threatens to consume him sometimes. But, he’s only 4 and still has to figure out how much of himself to give to various parts of his life – right now he wants to give 200% of himself to everything and everyone, and that leaves him stretched really thin. Preschool is going very well and he’s having a blast! He loves his two teachers this year (Miss Michelle, whom Jose also had, and Miss Jen, who is new) and wants to do everything in his power to never disappoint them. He’s having some trouble with classmates simply because there are a lot of very strong personalities in the class this year, and he is one of the youngest students, but he’s really making strides in standing up for himself, knowing when to walk away, and knowing when to involve a teacher. Also (and this is a big blessing!) he’s been doing an EXCELLENT job of remembering to use his words instead of his hands to get his point across. For so long, when he was frustrated, it was simpler to just shove whoever he was angry with, but he’s maturing quickly in his kinder-prep environment and it’s amazing to see the difference between toddler and young man that’s rapidly occurring in him. Squishy is also a spiritual blessing for me. This isn’t to say that Jose isn’t, because he certainly is in his own way, but Squishy just sees things differently. He is very open and perceptive and comes to me with questions, statements, and dreams that often blow me away. He’ll talk about playing with Grandpa Bud (who passed away before Jose was even born) in the backyard, or come sit and tell me about when he was in heaven before he was born. He also has reoccurring dreams about what he calls his “alone house” where all sorts of events take place that are detailed and vivid and often include people he knows in various stages of their lives. It’s a little scary sometimes, honestly, but mostly, I just wish I could sit and listen to him forever before the weight and sin of the world squash whatever this beautiful and innocent spiritual connection he currently has with God out of him.

My two boys are so opposite from one another and yet so alike in sometimes terrifying ways. I wish I could protect them from all loss and hurt, especially since they seem to have experienced both in extraordinary quantities for ones so young. Yes, I realize they have lead charmed lives compared to the great majority of the world’s child population, but in that charmed life, there can still be pain. Friends coming in and out of their lives. Loved ones who are no longer part of their world due to the changing needs and relationships of those who first introduced them. The realization that girls and boys grow up and may not always be able to remain best friends, because of what life dictates (I can’t even listen to “Best of Friends” from The Fox and The Hound without tearing up.) Being teased by friends or family – such a simple silly thing to the ones doing the teasing, but such a blow to the heart of one who sees the world differently. Their aunt, whom they knew for such a short amount of time, yet fell so head over heels for, passing away from cancer this past February. Even simple things like their fish, hamster, or the mama bird at school dying. And there is so much more. It just seems to compound to the point of night terrors, lashing out in anger, and breaking down sobbing for no apparent reason until they realize what the root cause of their heartache is. They love the people in their lives with every fiber of their being and are intense and serious in that love to the point that rejection (even something as small as a roll of the eyes and a, “Really?” regarding a t-shirt worn with such pride prior to said reaction) is a devastating experience.

And my problem and dilemma is one my mother faced with me: Do I sit them down and explain the hard and hurtful truth that not everyone is going to love them or even like them and that they need to toughen up? Or do I allow them to continue pouring themselves out to those they care for, all the while knowing how much hurt that can bring them? Do I rip off their rose-colored glasses or do I let them find out the harsh reality as it happens in time? Do I strip away their childish innocence for the sake of attempting to protect them from further pain, adding onto the glimpses they’ve already caught until they are cynical and flippant, making jokes out of any and every situation? Do I allow them to continue as they are, knowing they’ll be called wimps, pussies, mama’s boys, and worse if I let them cry when they need to cry and allow them to fully experience ALL human emotions? Is there some sort of happy medium between these two extremes???? At least, when it was me, I was a girl so most of those thing were considered more “acceptable” and less likely to make me a target (though I still managed to paint a pretty large bullseye on myself without really being aware of it.) But I’m raising two ultra-sensitive, crazy, loving, neurotic, artistic, athletic, intelligent, inquisitive, passionate, silly, somber (and more!) boys in a world that STILL after ALL this time seems to have a very definite picture of what a “real man” is and what he is not. And I don’t know if I’m prepared to handle the heartache that comes from that.

Now that I’ve rambled quite far down a rabbit trail I didn’t even see I was on, in closing a quote comes to mind (out of context, yes, but the sentiment is the same, entirely):

“‘I can bear pain myself,’ he said softly, ‘but I couldna bear yours. That would take more strength than I have.'” ~ Jamie Fraser, Outlander

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