This Page

has been moved to new address

Momo Fali's

Sorry for inconvenience...

Redirection provided by Blogger to WordPress Migration Service
Momo Fali's: April 2010

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Big Blog Love

On Tuesday night, I came home after being on my feet for the better part of 14 hours. I was tired. Not just physically, but also emotionally because the events of the last couple of weeks had drained me. The marrow of life had been sucked right out of me.

All I wanted to do was cry.

There was a package waiting for me that had been sent by one of my favorite readers, who also happens to be an inspirational writer. Actually, she's an inspirational human being. I don't know how we came to read each other's blogs, as she's a knitter and is exceptional at her art. As for me? I just own art. Like from Target and stuff.

Inside the package was a beautiful shawl. I pulled it from its bag and wrapped it around my shoulders. Instead of wiping away tears, I began to smile. That gorgeous shawl, which was made with love and out of pure friendship, arrived at the perfect time. It was like getting a hug from thousands of miles away.

Blogging has brought extraordinary people into my life. Outside of my church, I have never seen such generosity and downright goodness in others. Bloggers latch on to each other's writing, each other's causes and to each other.

Last week, my good friend Piper received devastating news when her fiance broke up with her over the phone. Piper is a strong, single-mother who loves with her whole heart and who oozes good vibes. She has a beautiful spirit, is an amazing mom and a terrific writer.

Today I, and many others, are sending her hugs from thousands of miles away. We are trying to repair her spirit to its beautiful state. She needs to know she deserves better than the bad hand that she was dealt. She needs to know we love her.

And, Piper, we do. We really love you. But, you're totally not getting my shawl.

For more Piper love, visit the links in this Mr. Linky:

Labels: ,

Monday, April 26, 2010

If Only

The little girl from my kids' school, who was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor in November, died on Saturday. I was at a party for school faculty and staff when we got the news.

As we hugged, cried and toasted Ellie, my mind drifted to how I was going to break this news to my children. The two of them have suffered an abundance of loss. If only I didn't have to tell them.

It is hard enough for an adult to deal with death, even though we know it's coming. Even though we are fully aware that it is part of the cycle of life. It still hurts. I don't like to hurt my kids. If only they didn't have to know this pain.

Death makes our fragility abundantly clear and the death of a child reminds us that, as parents, we aren't always in control. If only I could protect them forever.

My mom was babysitting on Saturday evening and as I walked in to greet my children and tell them Ellie had passed away, I wiped my eyes and took a deep breath. If only I could be strong.

As I gently broke the news, my eleven year old daughter started to cry. I pulled her close. If only they could bounce right back from this.

Then I turned to my hard-of-hearing son and said, "Did you hear me, buddy? Ellie died today."

He looked up at me and said, "Oh. I have the hiccups."

I found myself completely jealous. If only we were all so innocent.

Labels: ,

Friday, April 23, 2010

Happy Barfday

My husband's birthday was Tuesday. One of his favorite meals is beef stroganoff made from a family recipe. It's the same stroganoff he ate when he was growing up and since he's creeping up on 40, I thought it best to try and make him feel like a kid again. Also, does anyone else feel that I'm aging myself by talking about stroganoff? Oh good, everyone then.

After work on Tuesday, I managed to straighten up the house, wrap presents and make dinner. My husband got off work early so he could celebrate with the kids before an evening meeting and once 6:00 pm rolled around, the whole family was hungry and the table was set for a nice, family meal.

Until my son sat down, saw my creation and said, "Ew! Throw up!"

Labels: , , , , ,

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


Last week I went through a rough spot with my son at school. The details of the situation aren't important. What is important is that it left me devastated.

The details don't matter because, from the day my son was born nearly eight years ago, there have been constant "situations". His life has been one, big struggle and therefore, my life with him has been as well.

In the midst of last week's ordeal, I was shooting off an e-mail and made a statement about how having a child like my son is "such a challenge". The person to whom the e-mail was sent, responded by saying that "all parents feel challenged" and that "I am not alone".

I understand she was reaching out. I understand she was trying to make me feel better. Misery loves company, after all. The problem is that I do feel alone.

My son is different. He is unlike any other child I have ever known. I have had experiences as a parent that most people never will.

All parents know what it's like to get up with a baby in the middle of the night, but how many moms had to feed their baby every three hours, round the clock for thirteen months? And, it took an hour and a half at a time just to feed him two ounces of milk.

How many parents have handed off their kid to a surgeon? Nine times.

Most kids don't obsess over the number 10, want to rub people's arms or have to take medicine every day of their life. Most parents don't have to worry that their child will have a stroke, or watch him to make sure he doesn't look more blue than usual.

My son can't hear well, can't speak well, chokes easily, vomits easily...and all of this? Is after he has come leaps and bounds thanks to countless therapy sessions. The occupational, physical and speech therapy sessions that most parents never have to attend.

I find myself constantly clenching my teeth, my body tense, my mind anxious.

My son is not a typical child and that's okay. With the exception of taking away the physical pain he has suffered, I wouldn't change a thing.

Watching him overcome so much, seeing him grow and become someone we never thought possible has been amazing. It is a journey like no other and, though the road has been bumpy, it has taken me to beautiful places that I didn't even know existed.

The events of last week left me upset, not because I wanted pity, but because I wanted understanding and respect for my child. I don't want his struggles to be dismissed, because they are not average. They're monumental.

As for me? Well, every parent faces challenges, but I am guessing that they don't dredge up the memories of the hundreds of challenges which came before. That is where I was last week; standing alone, in a place where images of our past were swirling around my head. Visions that left me sick and dizzy and ready to circle the wagons around my boy.

My son is not every child and I am not every parent. There are times when we can stand side-by-side with our peers, but there are just as many times that there is no comparing us whatsoever.

There are times when we are alone. And sometimes, being alone gets awfully lonely.

Labels: ,

Monday, April 19, 2010

Do Not Go Up There

On Saturday night we invited some friends over for pizza. Let's say, hypothetically, that this was a last-minute get-together. I actually knew about it for days.

When you have two dogs, two kids and a husband who doesn't care when the house is dirty, it won't do any good to clean ahead of time. You can't straighten up until an hour before your guests arrive or else dirty socks and half-chewed dog bones magically appear.

After my daughter's morning track meet we came home and went to work. She dealt with the clutter, while I vacuumed, mopped, dusted and cleaned the half bath. Although there were random shoes laying around when our friends arrived, for the most part the house looked clean. Well, clean enough anyway. They're friends, not royalty.

Everything was fine until one of the moms in the group offered to read my son a bedtime story. She took him upstairs, made sure he brushed his teeth and got him into bed. I got a night off from the bedtime routine and my son got a night off from me rushing him through it.

So, what's the problem? The problem is that she went upstairs.

Upstairs to the land of unmade beds and a kids' bathroom with soap on the faucet, toothpaste on the mirror, dog hair on the floor and a huge rust stain in the tub. And there is a table in the hallway that looks like I am trying to feed the dust mites until they've had their fill.

If I had remembered the mess that awaited her, I would have never let her climb the steps. I was this close to faking her out and letting her believe that I'm a decent housekeeper.

Clearly, I need to be more conscious of where my guests go. Either that, or my next house needs to be a ranch.

Labels: ,

Thursday, April 15, 2010

How Does Your Garden Grow

We have great neighbors. Really, I just love them. One of them is my boss. I love her the most. What? I can be shameless if I want to.

The neighbors immediately to our east are wonderful too. They take great care of us. And by take care of us, I mean bring us cupcakes and cookies and homemade jelly.

Not to mention that they have one of the most beautiful yards on the street. Just last night I opened a window and a lovely floral aroma wafted into my kitchen. No air freshener necessary!

But, the best thing is that there is no competition between us. I mean no competition. At all. As in, none. Here is proof of that...

These are their hostas.

These are mine. See those little green stubs? But, look! Mulch!

This is their pretty, potted plant.

These are mine. Oh, okay! These are last year's potted plants which are still sitting on my patio.

These are their ferns.

These are my ferns which they gave me after dividing some of theirs a few years ago. Oh, the shame.

This is just one of their flower beds.

And, this is one of mine. At least my dogs have already started digging holes for me. Head start bonus!

This is their well-tilled garden plot from which they will gather vegetables later this year.

And this? Is where I will gather mine.

Labels: ,

Monday, April 12, 2010


Yesterday, a disturbed man entered our church in the middle of mass. He didn't appear to be homeless, or otherwise in a bad financial state. He was wearing clean, white shorts, sunglasses and had headphones on with music blaring so loud that everyone could hear it.

He walked down the center aisle and sat in a pew near the altar. When our deacon came down the steps and asked him to turn his music off, this man began to yell. Loudly.

A group of men jumped to the deacon's aide and they escorted the intruder to the back of the church and out a set of doors. One of those men was my husband. My kids began to cry.

I won't get in to what my husband told me this man said when they were back there, but it was a lot of nonsense and there were some threats made. The police were called. Had I known the words that were coming out of his mouth, I would have taken my kids and ran. The entire ordeal was very unsettling.

I held my weeping son with one arm and had my other arm wrapped around my daughter's shoulder, pulling her tight. She stared up at me. Then I leaned over and whispered, "Maybe we should pray for him."

And, once again, I was reminded that she is growing up because she replied, "I already did."

Labels: , ,

Friday, April 9, 2010

A Tale of Two Dogs

Once upon a time there was a mistress named Momo who had two kids and a second set of kids who liked to do things like drink toilet water, eat squirrel poop and steal hamburgers right off the grill. That second set of kids are of the canine variety, though it is true that Momo's daughter also drank toilet water. Just that one time.

One day, Momo had the opportunity to attend a pet-blogging conference where she could meet a lot of wonderful writers, and pet owners, and companies with representatives who might just know what you can put on one dog's food to make the other dog stop eating its poop.

Momo's dogs were quite happy about this event! They were hoping that mistress Momo would bring home some treats, and some more treats, but more than anything they hoped she would come home and just throw the dang ball already.

The End.

Labels: ,

Wednesday, April 7, 2010


My son was having trouble falling asleep last night. His room was hot, as it usually is, after having the sun shine through his window most of the day, so I told him to climb into my bed where there was enough of a cross-breeze to keep him comfortable.

I lied next to him and watched him drift off. After a few moments of sleeping peacefully, he experienced that sensation of falling where you gasp and your entire body jumps. Then he settled into his pillow and dozed off for the night.

That sensation is called a hypnic jerk and my son used to experience them a lot when he was young, especially when he was sick. And, he was sick all the time.

In the mere seconds it took for his body to jolt, my mind traveled from watching a typical kid going to sleep, to the very ill child I used to know. His hypnic jerk not only shook his body, but shook my memory as well.

I thought of the heart monitor that went off constantly and the sound of him gasping for breath as his nasal passages filled with the contents of his stomach. I remembered watching him play with toys in a hospital crib, three hour long appointments with neonatologists and geneticists and him crying in pain because we just couldn't get his meds right.

I thought of him weighing 13 pounds on his first birthday and how his GI doctor was this close to putting him back on tube feeds because of it. I remembered therapy sessions where he didn't do anything but lie there because he simply didn't have the energy to do anything else.

I thought of his heart diagnosis, his surgeries, and his struggles with eating, crawling, walking and talking.

I remembered everything.

I was reminded that all of those things are deep inside the boy I know now. He is tough, yet parts of his body are still weak. He is strong, but he is very small. He is smart, but still talks like a three year old. He is healthy, for now.

Although his struggles are much easier than they once were, he still faces an uphill battle each and every day.

I needed to be reminded of that; to know that he tries his best and has to work twice as hard as an average kid. I have been trying so hard to make him typical that I have forgotten that he, quite simply, isn't.

My son is different. He is one of a kind and I wouldn't want him any other way, even though I forget that sometimes. He is a challenge, but that makes his accomplishments all the more special. I needed to be reminded of how far he has come.

Thanks for the jolt, buddy.

Labels: , ,

Monday, April 5, 2010

I Almost Sold the Ketchup on eBay

Holidays make for interesting conversations around our house. Trying to explain the importance of July 4th became so challenging that I simply started referring to it as, "America's Birthday".

Lent was also a complex discussion, but nowhere near as tough as the triduum (the three holy days before Easter). Throw in a Resurrection and you'll have one confused seven year old.

I thought I did my best. Before we left for Holy Thursday Mass, I told my son that he would see the priest wash the feet of some chosen parishioners. I think this is one of the most beautiful and solemn ceremonies we have. It is a touching thing to be reminded that Jesus did this for his disciples.

My son, however? Not so solemn. Because when he smelled incense and saw smoke rising near the altar he turned to me and asked, "Mom? Is the priest making people's feet stinky?"

Then at lunch yesterday I was sure he had grasped the meaning of Easter when he enthusiastically announced, "I can't believe Jesus is risen!" Then he took a French fry and drew a picture of the Crucifixion in his ketchup.

Maybe all of this is my fault. I couldn't help but think so when I was downloading pictures last night. We took the kids to the park on Saturday for an Easter egg hunt where kids were dressed in their spring finest. My son, however, was wearing a Napoleon Dynamite shirt...with cinnamon roll swiped on it. Clearly, he was not happy about this. Or, he had to poop.

And, despite the fact that I have roughly 80 wicker, one cloth and at least three plastic Easter baskets in my basement, my son was using a plastic bag. Note to self: Plastic bags are not good for egg hunts which have 6000 eggs disappear in 20 seconds. By the time you get the bag open, the eggs are gone and then you have a very sad, seven year old who only got one egg.

Not only am I lousy at explaining holidays, traditions and what is not acceptable to draw in your ketchup, but I also stink at egg hunt preparation.

My poor kid is doomed.

Labels: , ,

Friday, April 2, 2010

Things Spring Brings

Things that make me happy:

1. Easter.

2. Sunshine during spring break.

3. This surprise bouquet I received the other day. These flowers are pretty to look at and smell delightful.

Things that make me unhappy:

1. My dog, Daisy, who gets chronic staph infections and, this spring, threw in a yeast infection for good measure.

2. Vet bills totaling more than $800.00.

3. This shaved, yeast-infected neck. It does not look pretty and does not smell delightful.

Unfortunately, I only get to throw one of them away in five days.

Labels: ,

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Subscribe to Posts [Atom]