31 December 2010

Christmas 2010

18 December 2010
As predicted, I could not wait to get home and cry to my mother. In my mind, I was going to unload as soon as I walked out of baggage claim. And my mom was going to make it all better. Only (like so many other things) it did not go as planned. My mommy was not there to pick me up at the airport, my brother was.

Derek came with Toyya the lady friend, not to be confused with Sianneh, mother of my nephew. Derek drove Toyya and I in a direction he thought would lead us to a road that would get us toward my mom's house. Yes, all three of us had GPS-enabled smart phones, capable of navigation. But it took me a while to realize he honestly had no idea where he was going. Once I fully remembered the anomaly that is my oldest, younger brother, we were both on the road and heading in the right direction.

My mother's house is not home, in that I didn't grow up there. Still, it's a place that houses people who love me. And in that respect, on that day, it felt phenomenal to be home. I suppose it's just the feeling of feeling loved. I mean I always know it, but seeing my little sister too excited to figure out how to unlock the door was (dare I type it) precious.

Dayana was super happy to see me, and her reaction was contagious. Donnell, the nephew who could not be bothered on the cruise, was at least friendly. I know he's my nephew, but I may make him my nemesis. He's a little too spoiled for my liking. Anyway, that first night home, I ate, I laughed, and I took pictures. I told my mom the latest in my life, and I think she was visibly disturbed, which made me sad. If my mom was upset, who was going to tell me it was going to be alright? We sat and we looked at each other with tears in our eyes, surrounded by family and cartoons and laughing children. And we shook it off. It was just about Christmas. And we had everything, and everyone, we needed.

I don't know why kids do this, but it's hilarious.

Father & Son.

Toyya.
19 December 2010
I got a taste of life for my mom. It's chaotic. Honestly, it seems too chaotic. But I think it's probably easier than when I was little. I mean there is just one Dayana to get ready for school, as opposed to a Danie and a Derek. Although there is a Donnell, who plays a great mini-Derek. So it's probably 1987 with Wi-Fi. Kids are scary business, and certainly not AM apropos. Once the kid was off to learn, my mom and I went to Dunkin Donuts. It's an East Coast treat for me, and we can walk there from the house. Doubly awesome.

When I'm at home, I enjoy just being there. People ask "what did you do," and I say "nothing." Mine has never been a family of explorers. My parents both drove hours to get to work. And they both had jobs that required driving. When we were home, we were home. We watched TV, sang songs, played games and all kinds of regular things. But we didn't take driving trips to places for no reason, which (for some reason) I feel other families did. When I was home with my mom in late 2010, we didn't do much. And then Abby came to visit.

Abigail lives in Virginia, which is close enough for a jaunt. We see each other once a year if we're lucky, and even then, Tab has to get married to make it happen. Abby is a rare friend, one who crosses worlds. She was with me in Minneapolis in the pre-blog days when my first car (Epe) was totaled by a senior citizen with an itchy trigger foot (though no fault was ever determined). Abby also helped me surprise my mom a few years ago in Baltimore. Abby knew Dayana when she was a small, noisy one year old, and she saw her again, as a garrulous five year old. Abby is family and I love it.

Abby & Dayana, 2006

As usual, Abby was a big hit with the kids. Dayana wanted to tell her stories. Donnell wanted to go through her purse. And in true Abby form, she did not mind. We sat on my mom's couch. We ordered food and ate too much of it. We talked about the future and how life had changed. I imagine it's what's implied by "we had a nice visit." Then Abby was gone.

"Open it?"