Thursday, June 23, 2011

Flamingo Invasion

My neighbor had a birthday this week. Everyone in the neighborhood knows it.

Flamingos covered his lawn from one end . . .
to the other.

One plastic flamingo for each year. Forty is a LOT of flamingos!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

This Was Not Part of the Plan

We didn’t plan to have a third child. But one night in 1979, Dr. Lobo and I got “friendly.” “Shall I get up and put in my diaphragm?” I asked. Dr. Lobo paused, shrugged, and said, “What the hell?” The result of that night of unprotected playfulness came to be known as our “What the Hell Child.”

Obviously, if we’d felt strongly about limiting our family size, we would have made a different choice. But I come from a family of three children, and Dr. Lobo had four siblings, so two kids didn’t seem quite enough. We rather liked the idea of having another child, but couldn’t quite justify it, considering our limited time, energy, and money. Besides, as my mother-in-law frequently pointed out, we already had both a girl and a boy.

Our “accident” arrived on June 9, 1980, nine days past due date. My sister, who had planned to be there for the birth, had been visiting for two weeks, but returned to California less than 24 hours before his appearance. (Our other babies came before their due dates.) My best friend, who had been present for Wild Child’s birth, missed the big day, too. Sigh. From the beginning, Little Guy had his own agenda.

I fell totally in love with that beautiful ten pound, one ounce baby. (Yeah. Over ten pounds. Yet another unexpected aspect of Little Guy. Our other babies were a respectable weight. This kid couldn’t even fit into the newborn size clothes.)

Throughout the years, I’ve often tried to imagine my life without Little Guy, and I just can’t do it. Each child brings gifts to the world, but somehow his gifts seem to be special blessings simply because we could so easily have never experienced them.

What is so endearing about this young man? First, as I’ve often said, he is the kindest person I know. His sensitivity and his compassionate heart often bring him pain. He fights for justice, searches for truth, and cannot tolerate hypocrisy. He’s smart, funny and affectionate, and he’s always seen the world a bit differently from other folks. Little Guy, all 6’4” of him, is a jewel, and I love him with all my heart.

Sometimes the best things in our lives are the things we didn’t exactly plan.

Happy Birthday, Little Guy.