I have been misplacing things all week long. Names, dates, car keys, wallets. It's been a little crazy. At least I haven't lost any kids? I'm just off. I keep thinking St. Patrick's Day is Tuesday, but it's not. It's 11 days away, in case you don't know. And really, if you read my blog, um, you should probably know that date. It's slightly important to my crazy Irish person and family. Did I mention that I'm only Irish by marriage? What can I say, it's a fun bandwagon to jump on. (It's March 17th in case you don't know.)
But I'm off kilter this week. And I honestly think part of it is the anticipation of St. Patrick's Day. Which is CRAZY, with a capital K. But that's me, so here we are. St. Patrick's Day is awesome on so many levels because it's an amazing family holiday. And even though we are far away from our families, I still love to celebrate and be with them in spirit. I sometimes am more homesick on this day than Christmas. I loved going to the Cathedral for a traditional Celtic Mass with Hub's parents and sister and family and then out for Irish breakfast with the whole family. It always seemed sacred to me, even before I was Catholic and Irish. But it used to be mostly all fun and games back then.
And then we had this red-headed boy. And we named him Jameson. And he embodied everything Irish in my mind, His joy was Irish. His hair was Irish. His spirit was Irish. And when he wore this hand-me-down T-shirt that said "Irish Prince" on it, it was like he was made for that shirt and that shirt was made for him. And so St. Patrick's Day became a little bit of Jameson's day in my mind. And now, even though it's really a celebration of St. Patrick, who was an amazing person, for me, its a day for my boy. Another day to celebrate his life and spirit.
But it's also still a day to be jolly and silly and dress up all crazy and eat Irish food. And I love to embrace it all. And sometimes the celebratory mood and the honoring Jameson idea don't always seem so complimentary and it sometimes feels hard. And a lot of time, I feel guilty because I have two children here who are also just as Irish(and they have the freckles to prove it!), but I tend to focus on my J. I feel guilt about that a lot. I worry that my living kids will think Jameson was my favorite and they are not as loved. Which is NOT true. I adore all three of my kids, but its complicated. It's easy to remember only the good with J and only the bad with Little Man and Little Lady so much of the time. He no longer causes me grief and I only remember loving him, missing him, wishing for him. But her and him still here. Lord have Mercy. I want them both and need them both like the air I breath, yet still, we have our moments.
Like today. When she tried to flush Daddy's socks down the toilet and flooded the bathroom and I screamed and dropped and F-bomb and still feel the mommy guilt bad enough to last all of eternity. And there are enough real life instances for both living kids to write a book I would never want to write. I feel like I'm failing and sucking at this parenting so much of the time; but the more I talk with other parents and my own who have been there and done that, the more I learn that EVERYONE feels that way. And while we should all aspire to be better parents and better people and drop less f-bombs around our children, there is GRACE and forgiveness and love that covers all kinds of messes I make. Praise Jesus and pass the gravy. Or wine. Either one.
I'm not sure how I want to wrap this one up. I'm kind of writing because it's been a frustrating week with my kids here. And I'm kind of writing because I'm really missing my J extra right now. And the two mock me in my mind all of the time. Because if Jameson could be here to flush socks down the toilet, I would probably clap my hands and throw a party. And what does that mean? I think it means I'm grateful to have kids living that can raise hell and bring me to my knees even though they daily stretch my perceived level of sanity, even if I can't see it in the moment. And I think through writing, I can finally get the the point where I can be thankful for cute bathroom flooders and remember to chose the joy. Because the alternative -the sadness and anger that come when I'm not being thankful, that is just not who I want to be.
And this is also your 10-ish day PSA to wear green, be Irish, and honor my Jameson. Slainte!