You should totally read my interview with my homie Sci-Fi dad: “Thinking is Hard” here. And my Slate.com interview ran simultaneously here, on The Happiness Project, which is a really neat blog run by my friend Gretchen. She’s a thousand times cooler than me, so you should read her.

And then I need more people to interview me because I am officially done with interviews, except those that I conduct in my head. SO SOMEONE INTERVIEW ME. PLEASE.

———————

Every year when my son Ben has to write a “This Year I’m Thankful For” letter, it reads sort of like this:

Dear Mom and Dad,

I am thankful that you buy me sheets. And blankets.

This would lead you to believe that I have him chained in the basement somewhere, perhaps duct-taped to a wall, shivering, only to be tossed a blanket when I’m feeling particularly benevolent. And well that is obviously true, it’s not.

That, of course, written by the same child who recently sent home the answer to the question, “Where would you take Mom for her birthday?”

McDonald’s because it’s my favorite and we eat it every day.

I may have junk in my trunk, Internet, but I do NOT eat McDonald’s EVERY day.

So it’s clear that my son, while he’s fanciful, is also pretty full of The Awesome, because that note is SO on my fridge because I laugh every time that I see it. Not only did he not answer the question because he didn’t pick out my favorite place, he also told his teacher that we eat fast food every day.

I’m thinking we’ll watch Super Size Me for Thanksgiving. Should be very uplifting, I’m thinking. Then it will make me very hungry.

Today is the day before American Thanksgiving, though, and because no one is actually going to be reading blogs tomorrow, save for my spam bots, which are either sending me really punny jokes, insulting me, or selling me knock-off prescription drugs, I figured that today is probably the day to Be Thankful.

And since the only person in the house to regularly write stuff ABOUT being thankful is 8, I don’t exactly have a killer model to choose from unless you want to hear how much I heart q-tips (orgasm in my ear!) or bath towels (orgasm on my ass!).

So I’m going to buck Ben’s model and go out on my own here and surprise the shit out of all of you.

Your Aunt Becky is thankful for this year.

Probably one of the worst, hardest years of my life so far, (made even worse by the Eggo waffle shortage!) and if given the option to have it any other way, I’d say no.

Because even in the darkest times, when I thought that I was suffocating under the weight of what I was carrying, when my fears crushed my chest and it was all that I could do to breathe in and breathe out and the rushing in and out of air seemed to fill the whole world and I didn’t know how I was going to go on, I found myself.

I did go on.

Seconds turned to minutes turned to hours and I lived and grew in those spaces between where I thought that I was going to burst apart at the seems, the fear, the weight, the terror pressing down. The days when I hurt so badly that nothing anyone could do ever helped, and my throat felt tight and the tears were always so close, those days eventually wore away. Slowly, they drifted away.

In their wake, I stand now, a different person.

I’ve lost friends, lost respect for people, I’ve seen who will stand beside me, and who is content to stand back. I am not who I was and I am thankful.

Today, I am thankful for my daughter Amelia, who, in her 9 months on the planet, has shown me more about who I am than I have learned in the 29 years before her. My sweet cinnamon girl, my Emma Gracie, the one who lived, my only daughter, the girl with curls like a halo, for who you are and what you have taught me and the light you have shown me, I am thankful.

Today and always.

Emma Gracie 2

Emma's Halo

Comments

comments

154 thoughts on “The Girl With Curls Like A Halo

  1. Sharks, although we have only “known” eachother for 2 months I feel like it’s been at least 2 months a week and 4 days. You make me laugh. This post made me cry. You make me wish I was a lipstick lez with you. I am thankful for so many things this year and you my new friend are one of them.

  2. I am totally in love with baby curls! Jack has so many that when we got his haircut yesterday, I insisted the girl not cut ANY of them off. So, yeah we paid for a cut and nothing was really cut! I don’t care. He looks delicious:)

    Ben’s “Thankful For” note reminds me of my Brother in law’s Chistmas list when he was around 8. It read simply,”Orange Juice!”

    Like my in laws had deprived him of the tasty orange nectar! Still cracks me up when they tell that story.

    Love you Bex, have a great Thanksgiving!

  3. Super Size Me did not deter my fast food habit. It did slow my boyfriend down for a couple months though.
    And you’re writing is beautiful. As always.
    And that baby girl is ADORABLE! My boy is at that age where everyone asks me “when are you going to have another?” And I’m at a loss. But when I see babies I want to rip my IUD out. I think I’ll get a kitty or a puppy for now though.

    1. Trust me, I see squishy newborns and I’m all “ovulate” and Mimi is our last, so I totally get this.

      I don’t think that Supersize me would probably make me love McDonald’s any less, but I don’t eat it every day, you know? Besides, after showcasing my talent at cooking, I think McDonald’s is an upgrade.

  4. I’ll pretend the link was there the whole time. I’ll get my shots in on Friday.

    Very cute photos and tribute to your baby girl. Happy Thanksgiving, even if it is a month and a half late.

  5. We’re thankful for Mimi too.

    And I’m thankful for the other awesome bloggers out there who have been supportive and wonderful during my first few months of “baring my soul”. Especially the awesome ones like Aunt Becky who take the time to come visit.

  6. Aunt Becky you are making my icy PMSy heart melt all over the desk!

    She is beautiful and not only did you survive it, you shared your story and helped others!

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  7. That was truly perfect. She is such a beautiful little thing. If I didn’t know better I’d swear that the back of her head is red from being over-kissed.
    And I’m thankful that one day I’ll get to say I knew you when, even though I don’t really know you save for in the internetosphere, which is kinda like saying I know Maia Sharp because I sent her a fan letter and she sent me a restraining order.

  8. And here I was thinking you were talking about me (you know curls, hair…yeah whatever.)

    I just found you this year so I’m thankful of that. What I am NOT thankful is that “no one is actually going to be reading blogs tomorrow” because nobody will be by a computer and nobody will be able to wish me a Happy Birthday (fishing much??)

    Having a birthday on Thanksgiving sucks.

    love to you.

    1. Shit, I’ll actually be around tomorrow to wish you a happy birthday. I am one of the few celebrating Friday. And halfheartedly tomorrow.

      Now, if I could only figure out why I smell like pee.

  9. This is beautiful! You are so blessed, but your children are even more blessed to have such an amazing mother.

    And prepare for my interview. It will totally get your rocks off. 😉

  10. Amelia is lovely! Certainly something to be thankful for.

    I am thankful for umbrellas.

    I haven’t eaten at McDonald’s in over 20 years.

    Also, ahhhh for the Q-tips.

    Thanksgiving was in October for me but I will have turkey tomorrow in solidarity!

    Happy tomorrow birthday Dianne.

    1. I’m making a lasagna tomorrow (and probably a cheesecake) and we’re doing turkey on Friday. I don’t actually own an umbrella of my own, if you can believe it. Or wait, I do, but it’s a frog. It’s got eyes and it’s pretty rad.

      Apparently, I’m 3 at heart.

  11. I just want to eat that brown eyed girl up! Mimi, is soooooo beautiful, and you are one lucky Momma.

    For goodness sakes, could you get that baby girl some toys? I think she might be lacking in the baby toy department…I’ll ship you some of my old ones, then she can have even more.

  12. I’LL be here…. because I’m like that yo…

    and also Canadian… and we’re WAAAAAAAAAAY ahead of y’all on the Thanksgiving front- BEFORE halloween’s the way to go peeps!!!

    have I told you lately that I could eat your daughter up with a spoon she is SOOOOOO cute!!!

  13. Both the post and the Cinnamon Girl are, as I expected, beautiful.

    Thanks for the tears and the grins over the time we’ve known each other, Becks. I’m thankful for you, among other things, and you’re spectacular in a billion ways.

    Enjoy Thanksgiving with your family.

    Also? Ben cracks me UP. The kid is a genius.

  14. I’m thankful for you and your ability to write awesome posts every day…for my personal satisfaction and entertainment. I’m thankful that not only are you able to appreciate the need for talk that includes “butt sex” and “fuck”, I am as well.
    I would LOVE to interview you!
    How would such an interview take place? Would you like to do it in some tropical locale…such as the Bahamas, where we may both escape our dreary winters? How much alcohol would you like involved in this interview? Would you like me to write up the questions, or do they need to be sent through your PR person?
    Girlie, I am so down with that.

  15. What scar? Boy… that cute little fuzzy head is just the most adorable little thing! I see what you mean about “curls like a halo”. I am so happy you have been able to come out of the fog of pain. I hope you’re well on your way to comfort. Here’s to 2010! It will be great! I’d love to interview you via Skype and put it on our blogs. We could interview each other! Yeah! And then I would REALLY have to start updating my blog and not write it like my 91-year-old grandpa is reading it every time… sad.

    1. I’m getting interviewed (I shit you not) for a podcast by a sex columnist who goes by Dr. Dick. Oh yes. ANYWAY. I’m getting a microphone thingy. Then you could interview me. Unless I look fat. Then you can’t.

  16. Although we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving in the UK (so I will be joining the spambots in their reading here tomorrow, they need love, too) this post was really…inspiring. It puts things into perspective.

    Your last post hit a never with me and I’ve been wondering where I’m going — today you’ve showed me life is all about the people we share it with. So thank you for that.

    1. I have kept your blog open all day, I don’t know if you track IP’s, trying to think of a good quote. All I can think of are shitty song lyrics and that’s stupid. I don’t have a good head for quotes, I guess.

      I’ll be by tomorrow, I’m sure, to post something, because that’s what I do. I’m really glad that you liked my post and I’m glad to have met you.

      Happy Thanksgiving, UK or not. I’m glad that you’re thankful today. xoxo

  17. Well said – that which doesn’t kill us, makes us stronger…and less willing to put up with random bullshit, damnit! Mentally sending you wads of fluffy virtual q-tips in thanks.

  18. I’m new to you – but not to the love of a little one that was hard on the mind and body. They ‘were’ tough – but now, totally worth the effort! 🙂

    Have a great one.

  19. Oh and P.S. Supersize me made me want McDonald’s. I rarely eat it, and eat healthy 99.9% of the time (ok maybe not that much). Now, I want a whopper. Dammit. And some potato skins.

  20. I too am thankful for your cinnamon girl, the girl who lived, the way that I am thankful for my Hannah, the girl who lived to kick the ass of metabolic crap and cerebral palsy, the stupid bastard. Your post resonates with me because I have spent the day awash in happiness and tears, because even though this year has kicked my ass, I am happy to have had it. Happy it is behind me now, but happy nonetheless, like you.

    We rock, sistah! And I am glad we found each other.

    And you’ll be glad to know, there’ll be sausage in my stuffing!

  21. OK so I didn’t get past the first paragrapgh about YOU but I’d love to interview you for my blog which has nothing to do with…oh who gives a rats ass because Donnie won and not Kelly.

  22. Her dark chocolate brown eyes are gorgeous.

    I know what you mean about having a terrible year. My year was 2007. When we kept getting diagnosis after diagnosis after diagnosis……shouldn’t a kid just have ONE diagnosis that will follow him for the rest of his life and not all of the following…psuedoarthrosis (bone problem in leg), plexiform (tumor problem on head and neck), neurofibromatosis 1 (nerve tumor problem EVERYWHERE), keeping an eye out for an optic glimoa. I’m pretty sure we got all of those in his first 12 months of life. Yea, it sucked.

    I guess, I just posted all that to let you know that I relate a bit. I’m sorry for all you’ve had to go through because there is nothing more terrible and difficult than seeing your baby in the hospital and feeling so hopeless.

    I’m thankful this year he’s been healthy and I bet your little girl will be healthy all the rest of her life.

  23. That post made me cry. And your daughter is beautiful.

    Someday, she will be blogging about how she is thankful to have you as a mom.

    Happy Thanksgiving.

  24. Awwwww…. I’m thankful that your Amelia is a tough cookie & that she makes you smile every day.

    I’m thankful that I found you.

    Yeah, I know, I’m full of mushy-love-for-my-buddies today, but I can’t help it. You are incredible & I am SO thankful that I get to know you.

    Happy Turkey Day, Aunt Becky, to you & yours!

  25. Amen to that! I know exactly what you mean- I’ve been saying that myself lately. It seemed like the worst year of our lives, but at the end of it there’s no doubt it’s been the best.

    And to echo what a couple of others said, I’m thankful for Amelia, too, and in particular I’m thankful for you for sharing her with us, for making me laugh every day, for totally letting me stalk you and for being my bloggy BFF. God knows I’ve needed a good laugh this year.

  26. Sweet Aunt Becky;

    Your baby is gorgeous. Is the hardest year in your life because your beautiful baby had a surgery for a piece of her brain outside her skull? OMG. That must have been even harder than pushing her out your hoo ha.

    My baby is now 16 (don’t you hate it when people relate to your story so they can tell one of their own – I don’t). I only have one, my hoo ha and my emotions might melt otherwise. She is 6 feet tall and people always say she should be a model but she is too busy playing soccer and volleyball and being 16.

    When she was 2 months old, my beautiful baby turned into a pizza before my eyes. She got chicken pox, and only got better after hospitalization and acyclovir – an antiviral usually used for AIDs patients. Thank God for AIDS – maybe – or she would have died. 50% of babies who get chicken pox before 1 month die. I did not know this, while she was pizzafying, but it was horrible. I was sure she would die.

    So, I was totally on board with your fear when your precious was having her surgery.

    In Canada, we had Thanksgiving on October 10 – one nice Monday, that is attached to the weekend so nobody has to work a day in between. We will work tomorrow and God help us if we need software support from an American company.

    Love you. Did I say Amelia is gorgeous. I will buy all your books, when you continue your writing career for more money. I love nurses, but some likely should not be there.

  27. Fantastic post. We have a little girl here with halo curls, too. Shocked the snot out of me, cuz her 3 older siblings have stick-straight hair.

    Have a fantastic thanksgiving.

  28. Your post: Beautiful

    Your love of Q-Tips: Kismet!

    I too am a lover of Q-Tips. Not the ones you can pick up at the dollar store, which is more like a toothpick attached to half a cotton ball (the use of which is certain doom), but the real deal Q-Tips. Lord Have Mercy, some things should never go generic. Like Q-Tips, Cheez-Its and Klonopin

    Happy Thanksgiving, Aunt Becky

  29. Listen, lady, I come here for the snarkery (is that a word?) and now you’ve gone and melted my cold, black heart. Seriously, she is a miracle, and I’m so glad that this chapter of your story had a happy ending.

  30. I love me a good butt orgasm with a fresh-from-the-dryer bathtowel.

    Wait. I don’t think that came out right.

    Your little girl is so beautiful inside and out – just like her Momma. I love reading about the joy she has brought to you and the ways in which she has made your life better. Happy Thanksgiving, Aunt Becky!

  31. This is how much this posting touched me: I am tapping out a response on my cell phone because my nil would say something snarky if she say me on the computer, so I’m on the toilet punching out this message that your words and daughter are beautiful.

  32. McDonalds and a Mimi, a perfect ying and yang of the unhealthy and the beautifully healthy:)
    Quite a lot to be thankful for, absolutely.
    xxoo

  33. holy shit batman, that’s a big wad of toys. in comparison, my daughter looks grossly unloved.

    btw, i have to strongly agree with your post. you’ve been through some shit, but you are still standing strong!

  34. Hate to make more work for you by commenting and knowing you’ll reply (which is amazing, by the way). But extra thanks for being the blogger who actually visits her readers’ blogs. Tickled to find your comment on mine today. That is The Awesome.

  35. I totally agree! Mimi is beautiful. After this year, I have had several people ask me if I’d do it over. And, while I almost want to say no, there have been parts of this year that have been so worth it. The knowledge that my wife, the love of my life will stand by me through everything always helps me keep going. That, and those kiddos yelling every morning! 🙂

  36. Awww geez Becks, you made me all teary. What a beautiful post and what gorgeous pics!! Happy Thanksgiving (even if it’s on the wrong day)….from your awesome Canuck living in Kiwi-land.

  37. I think every mother should have a little girl after having two sons. It makes us appreciate them more. Little girls are so delicious (nothing against little boys, I love my boys, ok not really some days but most days I love my boys)

    Daughters hold a special place in mamas hearts.

    Beautiful post.

  38. This might be one of my favorite posts.

    I am so thankful you’re thankful. Although it hurts to be reminded of the journey it took you to get here.

    And, fwiw, I’m thankful for you.

    Happy Thanksgiving Aunt Becky.

  39. Hi everybody, it is Thanksgiving Day! I’m enjoying my extra day off, and I am planning to make something fun that’ll probably involve a bike ride and seeing something new in West Hempstead I haven’t seen yet.
    You write new post at Thanksgiving?

  40. I too am thankful I found your blog. I had a really crappy year. Never did I imagine being 33 and having more “ologist’s” than I can count, which has often lead to bouts of self pity.

    Through your blog I have come to know many other bloggers, such as Anissa and her very talented writer husband Peter, who remind us that there is always so much to be thankful for.

    Hope you and your family have the best holiday season ever. I must send you some pics of my curly cue one of these days.

    1. I require adorable curly cue pictures and I’m so glad to have met you too. I know it sounds corny, but even when I’m talking to The Daver, I refer to my blog people as my friends. Because you are. Even the ones in the shadows, you are all my friends.

      I owe all of you a great deal and I don’t ever forget it.

      xoxo

      I think 2010 is going to be amazing. Truly.

  41. I just have to say that you are the shit for mentioning your love of Q-tips. I call their “side-effect” “eargasms”! I finally feel less alone in the world! hehe… happy (late) thabksgiving everyone!

  42. This year has been hard to be thankful…it’s been hard to find the *things* to be thankful. But I stop and just look around and see…the five year, the husband, the family that stands together. The friends I’ve made here. And yes, (I’m so cheesy) you – who I found this year. At the time of this comment I am sitting in a swanky ass hotel – watching Sponge Bob, drinking beer, drawing up my battle plan for The Magic Kingdom tomorrow. I’m thankful for that.

    1. It’s all about grace in small things. I’m glad to have found you, too. I’m not kidding when I say that I consider you to be my friend. All of you guys are my friends.

      Cheesy, or not, it’s true.

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