Monday, June 16, 2008

Non Sequitur

Have you ever had one of those days where there seemed to be no segues? Yesterday, I drove my almost 18 year old son to the airport in Manchester, New Hampshire. It was a three hour drive and he slept most of the way and while he slept I thought about his childhood and how until about a year ago all we ever did together was smile and laugh.

As we neared the airport, I touched his arm and asked him if he would like something to eat. He saw a McDonalds and said that would be good.

We went in and ordered our food. Words were hard, I couldn't think of any new ones and he had already moved on in his mind but there was a TV in the restaurant to distract us from the need for conversation. Except, here's the weird thing--the TV was tuned to an infomercial for a colon cleansing product--does any one think that is appropriate for a restaurant--especially that particular restaurant?

Near the end of our meal either the channel changed or the infomercial ended because the screen was full of images of Iowa City where he had been a little boy except now the streets and parks, bridges and buildings are full of water.

The plane landed in Philadelphia safely and the big brother is now the point man. It will all be good.

I drove home thinking about Iowa City and our lives there and what it would be like if we had stayed. It proved impossible to imagine--way too many variables to consider but my thoughts are certainly with all of those who are struggling with weather and uncertainty.


Anonymous said...

I'm at a loss for words except for hang in there Beth. (I'll find a song that fits the situation and send it later today.)

Mary said...

You write from your heart. I like that.

The Texican said...

I think the correct paraphrase for the biblical recommendation is to teach a child the proper way when he is young and when he is "old" he will remember the teaching. Those intervening years can be the tough ones. Even Solomon, wise as he was, was swayed by bad outside influences. Teen boys have very little capacity for analyzing the consequences of their actions (good or bad). That's why they make good soldiers. Those of us who survived those years with only minor scars are blessed, but I can imagine the gray hair we put in our mothers' head. My little bro. was excited to go back and live with mother after spending a semester under my guidance. :) P.S. The song is Merle Haggard's "Momma Tried".

Ruth said...

Oh Beth...those long silent drives are difficult. My dear aunt sent me an email yesterday and said,
"Isn't being a parent fun! Need I say more? Many times I've said to new, frustrated mothers "this is the easiest time of your life. It might seem tough, but it's nothing to what the teen and adult years can deal you ..."
I am sure you will eventually look back on this time and be thankful that things turned out well. It is wonderful that big brother is there for the time out.
Thinking of you...

Jayne said...

Sad that they have to go through those times in order to eventually be able to separate from us, but as everyone said, you've done your part, it will stick in him, and within a couple of years, all will be well. You'll see. :c)

I see the video of Iowa and surrounding affected areas and can't even begin to imagine what that must feel like... seeing your entire life submerged in water. Sort of puts things into perspective for me.

rach :) said...

I come back to Weather Boy's post today: right now, the teenager is that sailor at sea in the midst of a storm. Hey Lucky You he has so much support... as do you.

TheElementary said...

Yes to that colon advert and I'm sure I've seen the same one in a food court at a rest stop ... it disgusted me then and I wasn't even eating anything.
I imagine that was one of the hardest drives of your life.
I'm hoping that everything works out for you soon and that your son gets his balance again. Maybe things won't be as they were before- but they might be even better.

Beth said...

Thank you all so much.

Marie said...

I can truly identify. I have four altogether, but my boys are the two oldest. They are grown men now, 30 and 31, and one is a father. But, oh, I miss those two little towhead perpetual motion machines that I had so much fun with!! Things were so easy when they adored me. :)

The separating stage has been hard for all of my kids, but it is so worth it when they get to the other side. :)

I enjoy your postings. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Beth's son had it all! He use to rock climb ever day! Now no climbing! Life has really grabbed a hold of him and not in a good way. The only one that will ever know why things changed so drastically in such a short time, is him. Inner turmoil can wreak havoc with one's soul. Trying to find your way through it can very challenging. We all have our struggles. Time may or may not heal the wounds, but we have to get there first. I just hope he open his eyes and "Sees," what is rerally there.