After our cooking session at Corinthian last week I returned to my kitchen with my D.F.F. (dear family friend), it was as if we were living in a private bubble of our own. Cracking jokes and moving in and out of our fears of living with illness. We spent a wonderful day with Jane Ellen (my right hand gal at our Cattle Company) she rolled one of our tractors into to town and headed to the neighborhood surrounding Corinthian Baptist Church.
Our plan was to till up the land and plant us a garden but what we found was the the land is way to full of large rocks and unhealthy soil. So now we’ve returned to the raised beds option. Fred Reiter who has joined the Noble Food Makeover and his son Jack are researching and building what we need.
As I’d written that we have been considering leaving Nashville and returning to the West coast my deepest fear is once again uprooting Bella. She is finally grounded and like myself feeling emotionally sound. Grant it we’ve had some upsets here too, last week she was punched twice at school once in a big mess during a playground basketball game and another time by an aggressive boy at aftercare. My D.F.F. and I rolled up to school the second time I was phoned. Suddenly I became my grandmother, my mother, my aunts and every relative before them – listen being raised by Italian women means being raised by a woman with a voice. I stepped into the aftercare using my heritage – addressing the entire room I said, “Check this out, NO ONE HITS MY KID – NO ONE HITS. This is all gonna stop RIGHT NOW.
I’m not certain what it is with kids these days, yes there was always playground brawling but it’s gotten intense as kids are exposed to violence on TV and video games, parents are busy trying to keep up with all that is expected on the outside of our lives and home has become a place that we sleep and barely eat. Kids are picked up from school and shuttled to an extra curricular activity, returning home just before homework, a quick convenience meal and bed time.
I too feel this pull but thank goodness that my health demands that I eat real food, making it so I must be home in the afternoon with my kids to prepare food, sit with them in the kitchen and turn into bed alongside of them – I also require 9 hours of rest and since I start my day at 6am I’m down at 9pm.
I was on a radio show last week with Dr. Carolyn Ross, MD – Voice of America – Vital life. She asked me how I apply Princess Know It All to my girls – I answered her, but afterwards I thought about it in more detail. I really try to hold them accountable for their reactions. When they fuss at each other I get in the middle of it – they are young they don’t have the tools or life experience to sort things out, this ignorant thinking “make ‘em work it out” is B.S. I’m married and a full-fledge adult and I still struggle with working it out with folks. So, yep I take the time to help them sort through their feelings and conversations. I show them how to see their part and to understand when it’s not about them and when it’s all about them and the other person had nothing to do with it. I also teach them to forgive and be compassionate by seeing all sides.
The school situation was a big one for us, we are still new here and we don’t have a long history so we don’t have a reference point to fall back on for trust. What really struck me is the importance of holding children accountable, that kids without consequnces become adults without consequnces. I don’t worry about Isabella as she KNOWS that no matter what happens I show up for her but for the kids that swing their fists they are really shouting out for support.
My initial response was totally character based “Hi I’m Fine With Out You” backed by “Hi I’m Not The Rib.” The two of them turn and walk, which really opens a door for my most damaging character “It’s Hard I Can’t & You Don’t Understand” (she is a total Victim). I have to think about how I react to situations because this is how Isabella and Lola will handle their personal twists as they navigate through life.
One of the benefits of teetering along the edge of death is that I now view my life as if this is my last year. I think about what do I want to share with my daughters, who do I want them to see me as? Have I shown up for them in all ways possible? Did I use my voice? Did I make a difference? Did I participate? Did I control my reactions? Did I laugh? Did I love deeply? Was I a great friend? Did I do everything support my health & the health of my family? Did I forgive?
With all this said I had to take a break and step away from the situation, Bella really loves her school and I needed to see all sides of the situation. Even though I really wanted to blame the school and judge their handling of things I KNOW that this is a community issue and it takes more than an administration to bring Nobility & Honor to our schools it takes US.
Having my D.F.F. here with me was a reminder of how far I have come and to trust the uncertainty of what is waiting for me in the future. At one point we put our foreheads together as I shared with her my secret.
I pointed to my forehead I told her this path is the 50% chance of intestinal cancer, this path is 50% Crohns disease, the path I have created is in the middle it is my own and here is the label I give myself, I am a person healing a worn out body, and strengthening my immune cells feeding the healthy cells. As my mind follows this path I see myself as well, healthy and happy. We are the image that we carry in our heads and heart.
I love that she was here to be a part of last weeks Noble Food Makeover; it was a gift of resilience. The more we give to others the less our own fears & problems weigh…. Am I leaving this wonderful city? Not just yet…I got some work to do and the one thing I KNOW is to not take my cake out before it’s baked and I’m just starting to put my ingredients together.
Plus who knows just maybe my mission is to remain right here where I am in my place of destiny…..