Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Getting home on time

I was on a plane yesterday flying from Kansas City to Chicago and saw a man die. It was so awful, so, so awful. He walked onto the plane and I commented to David that he looked like Kramer from Seinfeld but with giant glasses. He looked about 45 years old. He was 4 rows in front of us and 15 minutes into our 1 hour flight the people next to him called the stewardess who was running the beverage service. He looked like he was having a mild seizure and then he went limp. There was all sorts of running around and they pulled him into the aisle and laid him down right in front of us. A doctor and a couple paramedics who happened to be on the flight shocked him a few times and did CPR for the rest of the eternally long flight. Everybody was crossing themselves and the stewardesses were crying and counting to 10 over and over for the paramedics. It looked just like a scene from ER except there were people crawling over each other and over seats to get passed the dying man and pass the defibrillator to the doctor or pass the oxygen tank or more gloves.
Obviously we had priority landing at the nearest airport and we were, "flying at maximum speed due to a medical emergency", but he didn't respond to the CPR for at least 30 minutes. He just passed on, right there in front of us. A stranger to everyone on that plane. It was awful, so awful.
They took him out on a stretcher and then the captain turned off the fasten-seatbelt sign and we all got up, took down our carry-on luggage and dispersed into the terminal. And that was it. Nobody said anything, nobody said a prayer or blessed the body...we all just went about our business. David and I caught our connection (which we probably would have missed if we hadn't had priority landing). Nothing changed. We weren't even inconvenienced by this man's passing. I desperately wanted to miss our flight. Or to have to stay in Chicago overnight -maybe be stuck on the plane extra long. I wanted my bags to be lost. Anything, anything to mark the passing of that stranger. It was awful, so awful to just walk to our gate, stand in line at the McDonald's, eat Chicken Nuggets, board the plane and get home on-time. A man died and I caught my flight.

May the soul of that faithful departed, through the mercy of God rest in peace...

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Nannies *updated*

For the long nights you lay awake
And watched for my unworthy sake:
For your most comfortable hand
That led me through uneven land:
For all the storybooks you read:
For all the pains you comforted:
For all you pitied, all you bore,
In sad and happy times of yore:
My second mother, my first wife,
The angel of my infant life -
From the sick child, now well and old,
Take, nurse, the little book you hold!
- Robert Louis Stevenson

I just came across this section about nannies in a book I'm reading and it has brought me a whole new appreciation for the fact that my kids get a mommy and not a nanny, or worse, a daycare center. Thank goodness we live in the time that we live in - not that I'd mind having an extra set of hands around occasionally to help with the nitty-gritty of mommying - but when it comes down to it, even the nitty-gritty of discipline, healthy feeding, diapering, cleaning, etc. is bonding me to my kids in a very deep and powerful way. When you serve someone your love for them and your ability to see Christ in them deepens.
I'm so grateful to be living in a time where moms can be moms and don't need to leave that up to the hired help. Here's a part of the description of the relationship between a child and his nanny during the hight of Victorian England's household structure. This description reminded me so much of the relationship between all the children and Nanny in Brideshead Revisited. I guess you could make the argument that in that tale it was the faith of Nanny, quietly praying on her beads, that gave the example which served as the "twitch upon the thread" more then their heroically virtuous and somewhat intrusive mother. Who knows...just a thought for those of you who have read or watched Brideshead.
[Gawthorne-Hardy] speaks of grown men who remained stoically dry-eyed when
discussing the deaths of their mothers, but who dissolved into tears when
discussing their nannies. On visits home such men frequently dashed past the
drawing room where their parents sat waiting and tore up three flights of stairs
to visit Nanny in her nursery. It was common for public school boys, sent off at
the age of seven, to cry not for their mothers, but for their nannies, who
tended to mourn their charges' departure as they would a death.

Yea 21st century! I'm glad I wasn't raising kids 100 years ago, or rather, not raising them.

(quote taken from To Hell with All That - Loving and Loathing our Inner Housewife, by Caitlin Flanagan)

Friday, November 9, 2007

What? Russian?

Your Inner European is Russian!
Mysterious and exotic.You've got a great balance of danger and allure.
Alia is the Russian
Your Inner European is French!
Smart and sophisticated.You have the best of everything - at least, *you* think so.
David is the Frenchie

Thanks Maria.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

My Boy

The quotable Mo

At Mass, looking through the cryroom window during the consecration:
I see the Lord! [Wow, I think to myself. I'm raising a mystic.] Look, the Lord is praying!

I like Grandma. She's a fun, fun, fun, fun kid. No. She's a fun, fun, fun, fun muvver.

Me: You know what Moses? My throat hurts.
Moses: Oh mommy. You want me to rub it?

On the way home from a Halloween Party.
David: You spent a lot of time with ____.
Me: Yeah, I invited her and she didn't know many people
Moses: I invited her, too.
Me: I met her on the Women's Retreat.
Moses: I met her on retreat, too.
Moses: What was that?
Me: I forgot about the stop sign and I had to stop quickly!
Moses: I had to stop quickly too...........(long pause) was your fault mommy.

Moses: Mom! There's a Haro-o-opter.
Me: Oh! You're right - there's a helipcopter!
Moses: No! It's a Harold-the-copter! [who knew Harold's last name was copter?]