Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Anytime…




By: Samantha S. Daviss

It has taken me this side of 40 years, my entire life, to finally figure out my favorite time of year. I have my favorite seasons, and it is definitely not summer; autumn is actually my favorite season. But I guess I have to say summer is my favorite time of year.

Most people like the holidays with Thanksgiving and Christmas, but sometimes those to me feel a little forced. For some reason there are too many emotions wrapped up in the holidays. There’s the feeling that if you don’t go visit family then someone gets upset, or if you have lost family then that is typically the time that you miss them the most, or just the obligatory need to perform and offer massive amounts of gifts and food, and by the time January rolls around you are exhausted and broke. I enjoy the holidays, but summer is my favorite time of year.

I get to spend a little extra time with my kids around the pool or at the lake, take a well-deserved vacation, and not have to worry about homework or after school activities. This summer has probably been my most favorite summer ever. We are building our forever home, we have been at the pool and lake almost every day, and we have been able to spend tons of time with friends.

The first few weeks of the summer was great, then as time has gone on I can see the order slowly drift away and the chaos has rapidly taken over like a fungus. I know it’s time for school to start back when on our most recent road trip, I was threatening my boys with every inch of their lives with a skinny (bent) plastic bat that had been shoved under one of the seats in my car. I can honestly say, teachers are not paid nearly enough.

My house went from organized chaos from the school year to just an inconsonant madhouse. I’ve never claimed my house to be a calm and completely organized environment, how could it be with three boys, a husband, 2 dogs, and a rabbit? So over the summer I have learned that what I am truly best at in life…and that is driving my car at any hour of the day or night, picking up clothes, and putting away toys.

My house this summer looks like a field of land mines. You walk into our living room, my bedroom, down the hallway, and into each bedroom and there are about 4 pairs of socks balled up on the floor that look like little land mines, so be careful where you step. Because that extra 5 feet was too far to walk and throw them in the hamper. It’s ok, I get it.

You want to leave an ice cream sandwich wrapper on our leather couch, sure no problem, I’ll pick that up.

Oh you want to stay up until 2am watching TV and sleep until 3pm the next afternoon, no problem sweetie, I am here at your beckon call.

The clean clothes I washed and set in your bedroom, oh, please go ahead and throw those on the floor too, I absolutely love standing in the laundry room for hours on end folding your clothes.

A work meeting, yes please text me in the middle of that so my boss hears my phone rattle and I will immediately jump up, run out and whisk you away to whichever friend you plan on meeting up with today.

There is absolutely no need to put your dirty dishes in the dishwasher. Please make sure you leave them out on the wood coffee table so maybe it will stick to the surface or slide them under the couch so in a couple weeks it will leave a wonderful odor in our house.

Wet swim suits are welcome on any surface. I especially love it when you guys lay them on my wood furniture. I love spending hours with my lemon oil trying to bring the life back into my furniture instead of sleeping at night.

But mainly I am so happy and thrilled with the idea that your dad and I finally decided to put a revolving door on our bedroom. We love it when everyone is in our room 24/7. And more importantly I love getting out of the shower to guess how large my audience will be this time.

Ahh yes, summer is a magical time of year. I get to spend time with my kids and really work on my driving skills and my cleaning abilities.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Talk to Them



By: Samantha S. Daviss

So today I was awakened by my four year old yelling and crying. Normally he climbs in bed with me and we snuggle for about 30 minutes together before we have to get up and start our day. But today was different. I flipped on the light and to my amazement he was yelling “There’s a choo choo in my hair!”

I of course had no idea what he was talking about until he turned around and sure enough there was a mechanical Thomas the Train tangled in his hair. I tried so hard not to laugh, but I couldn’t stop the internal giggle, because well you see in the life of a mom of all boys, nothing shocks or amazes you any longer. You just take it in stride, laugh a little, and sip on your morning coffee as you cut Thomas the Train out of their hair.

They are so sweet and so innocent for such a short amount of time, you wake up one morning and you’re cutting Thomas the Train out of their hair, and the next thing you know you are waking up in a panic hoping they are home safe in their dorm room or their apartment while they are off at college. But somewhere in between there you have to talk to them. You have to teach them right from wrong, and you have to hover a little bit to make sure they are with the right people and making good, wise choices.

And hopefully you have a strong enough relationship that they are open and honest with you. I recently entered the “teen years” with my oldest; and to be honest he has a fantastic group of friends that he runs with. But as a parent you can’t assume they are always doing the right thing. And you can’t assume that they know what is right and wrong. You may think they do, but if they have never been exposed to the dangers of the world, how will they know what’s right and what’s wrong?

You assume they know not to drink and drive, but they aren’t born with that innate knowledge. Hopefully over the years, yes, they picked up on it; but you know what they say about “assuming”. You assume they know not to take medicine, particularly prescription meds from friends; but they may not know that it’s illegal, it’s dangerous, and it could seriously damage their bodies.

Talk to them about sex. I know this is a subject that makes most parents extremely uncomfortable, but they are just young people struggling to survive the teen years, and puberty, with all of these crazy thoughts, hormones and feeling raging through their bodies. So help them. Be there for them. Be their parent, but be their friend too. Help them make the right decisions and choices that will further effect the rest of their lives. Because you must remember, one wrong choice can affect the rest of their lives, and yours too. Don’t have the attitude that if we don’t talk about it, then they won’t do it. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Talk to them.

My girlfriend and I were having a conversation one day, and she asked me what all I have talked to my son about; and I was very honest and told her what we have and have not talked about. And she got a little embarrassed and shocked at what we talked about. But he had a lot of questions for me, and I wanted him to learn from me and not hear it in the locker room at school and receive the wrong information. So it was important to me to put my feelings aside and handle the situation head on.

I had a very dear friend that is about to “celebrate” (I loathe using that word when in conjunction with death)…so I guess “recognize” is a better word to use. He is about to recognize or acknowledge the one year anniversary of his son’s death due to an extremely unfortunate prescription pill mishap. This friend of mine wants people to understand they must talk to their children and explain to them the dangers of drugs and other choices kids have to make in their lives. Maneuvering through life is difficult enough as it is, but having the extra added burden of sex, drugs, and negatively influential friends compounds the complexities just that much more.

So please remember the little people your kids are or once were and just know that they may not know. They may not know right from wrong, they may not know something is illegal, and they may not know what can and cannot harm them. Please don’t ever assume, please talk to them. You only have one shot at this parenting thing, so let’s do it right the first time around.

Please understand that if there has been an unfortunate situation occur in your life with your children, I’m not saying you did a bad or poor job, parenting is the toughest job in the world; I’m just asking for parents to start talking now, before it’s too late.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Always be open to new friends



By: Samantha S. Daviss

I truly believe that friends are in your life for three purposes…a reason, a season, or a lifetime. I have been blessed to be touched by friendships and relationships for all points of time.

I had high school and college and early 20s friends that you think will be in your life forever, but they are there for a reason. Maybe to help you through a hard time, or to introduce you to something new in your life, or to allow you to see the world from another point of view. Regardless of the reason, and regardless of the amount of time they were in your life…you will never forget them and you will always treasure them for their purpose in your life.

Then there are those friends or relationships that you think will be around for the long haul, but sadly they dissolve at the end of their season. Whatever the purpose or reason was for their stay for that period of time in your life, they too served a very important purpose for you, your surroundings and your life. Maybe they introduced you to your significant other, maybe they taught you want it meant to lose a friend, or maybe they taught you what it was to have trust in some one and that trust disappears, yet you survived.

Either way, they were there for a while and now it is time to move on, remember the good memories, and realize that you grew apart; but while it lasted it was wonderful.

And the “forevers”, “the besties”, “the mind readers”…these are the friends that have been with you forever, they are your lifetimes. They know what you are going to say before you say it. They may not have been in your life too terribly long at this point, but you can tell they are here to stay. They are the ones that have seen you at your worst, have held your hair while you hug the toilet, the ones that get you dressed as you’re being discharged from the hospital, and the ones that have picked you up (literally) off the floor when you have hit your absolute rock bottom.

These are the friends that have seen you on your happiest of happy days, and been there for you on your worst of sad days; and they still love you no matter what. They are the friends you include in holidays, or call at 2 am because you need to. They are the friends you sleep next to even though your husband lost his place in the bed, because they had too much to drink that night. They are the family with whom you don’t share bloodlines.

As friends come and go and stay forever, you are constantly meeting new people and welcoming them into your life. And recently I was privileged to have this experience with a wonderfully crazy group of gals. Some I knew, some I had never met before, but they were all amazing from our introduction; as if I had known them my entire life.

It’s nice to know that when you are making a transition in your life; be it a large one or a small one, that there are people at the other end to catch you in case you fall along the way somewhere. And it’s nice to know that you just might fit in to your new life, wherever the road may take you.

These gals I had the privilege of meeting, knew not a stranger. They were hilarious, warm, funny, and just down right full of southern charm. I love opening a back door, walking into a group I don’t know, and no one stares, they all start talking to me as if we had been sisters for life.

So cheers to my reasons, my season, and of course my lifetime friends! And a big howdy to all my new gals…here’s to hoping for “forevers”.