Lifetime

a lifetime
thinking it over
all the joys
the sadness
imprinting generations
building our strength

3/5/3/3/7/5 Shadorma Poetry

***

Nothing like a box Chevy (during a rebuild), booze, old country music and big brother’s barn on a Friday night. Baby, Middle and Red claiming seats as big brother chuckles. None of us would have it any other way. I love when we get together and laugh over ourselves.

Everyone’s version of our story is a little different, but oh we four see it the same… I love’em!

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Your Christmas Poem

Here it is early Christmas morning. I should be in bed, but my baby sister, Leah, asked for a poem. I told her it would end up being terribly sad, and she said “sounds perfect.” My three siblings, no matter how old we get, still feel an incredible urge to be together for Christmas.

The last Christmas memory I have of us, as a nuclear family, is from when I was 12. It isn’t a positive memory, in all honesty. I remember my parents fighting in the only bathroom our house had, but it was one of the farthest rooms from the Christmas tree, so that’s where they went in an effort to shelter us from their crumbling marriage.

My parents needed to be away from the tree, because that’s where the four of us were sleeping. We were in a row with all four heads as far under the tree as possible.

We always decorated a real tree. Dad would load us all up into the pickup and we’d drive out to a small town called Ong. I’m not sure we were allowed to call Ong a town, it was more like a village, but a Christmas tree farm was located close by and we went every year.

This particular year, we walked a while before finding the perfect tree. I had my heart set on the best looking tree. Dad tried to warn me that it was too big for our living room, but I wouldn’t listen. I dug my heals in and insisted we cut the tree down and take it home.

Dad cut the tree down happily. We all helped carry it back to the pickup. Dad was great about choosing his battles with his children. Not much ever stirred him up, if I remember correctly. Calm, cool and relaxed is the best way to describe him. Mom could be described the same way now. Back then I think she looked at his coolness as more of a detriment to the greater good, if ya know what I mean.

My dad once crushed a man’s fist with his bare hand. The reason had something to do with witnessing this man strike his wife with the force of ten men. I suppose we all have limits, but I digress.

Y’all, the tree was enormous. We couldn’t place it in front of the picture window of our house, because of the size. We had to place it into a corner and hope for the best. The tree must have taken up the majority of two walls, but no one cared. We laughed over that tree for hours, maybe even days.

Anyway, this is what runs through my mind while trying to find the right words for a poem.

I thought I’d share a few silly giggles we had while chatting tonight…

Baby and her crew are in Colorado for Christmas. As they were reaching their destination she snaped this picture:

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She says we made it…only three individual lights glowing out here in the middle of nowhere and we all have the same last name. Colorado farm country can be a lonely place.

Middle was also traveling for Christmas tonight. Somewhere near the Oklahoma panhandle is her destination. Middle came out of the womb a city girl, but married a country boy, so we often giggle over her adventures. She sent me this update:

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“Aud, the last truck ahead of us just turned. We’re officially alone out here and it’s spooky.” (Gorgeous picture, Bean!)

Lastly, Big Brother’s holding his own fort down and doing his part for Santa. Not sure cookies go with his drink of choice, but he’s the oldest and I’m not gonna argue with him, plus someone at his house just got a set of drums…

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So yeah, that was our Christmas Eve giggle session. Oh, I did share this photo with them, but know that you may not hold me accountable for finishing it.

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Here’s your poem, my loves.
*****

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Christmas without you,
Never seems the same,
The food tastes worse,
And usually, ’tis game.
Hunting is frequent,
Among midwestern plains,
So the complaining must quit,
There’s only you to blame.
Of course we’d rather be together,
Sitting inside Big Brother’s barn,
We all know what happened last year,
Not one of us tried looking for a star.
We were all far too busy singing songs,
About whiskey and honky tonk bars,
To remember how often we’re apart,
A new Christmas memory is now ours.

Okay, it’s 2:40 AM….I’m spell checking and that’s all. My siblings got their Christmas wish. Anything that doesn’t make sense we’ll blame on Eggnog. Merry Christmas!!

I Miss These Brats!

Group chat with my three best friends, also known as my siblings, went well tonight. We even offered hilarious photos of one another. My meeting ran late, but when I returned home they were waiting patiently for me.

My siblings discussed Parenthood while they waited, a television program I used to watch a few years ago, but no longer do. Who has time? I will tell you that I don’t have any time, but they disagree by saying: My priority setting requires a revisit one of these days. Whatever.
Continue reading

Giggling Siblings

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A photo received this evening
Via Assholes, it seems
Giggle worthy, I believe
Siblings, teasing me
Oldest Sister always clouding
Viewing and capturing daily
Poetic puffs of creativity
Eleven floors up, they see
A spectacular moon beaming
Redheaded Sister will envy
A moon over the Rockies
Pay no mind to the glaring
It’s sparkling somewhere brightly
None of us can accept or believe
Our father has Cancer, weeping
But humor’s alive and well, Roomies
Oldest Sister is finally, giggling
Hospitals can be so very boring
Tease Dad for flirting with Nurse “Nelly”
And let this Cloud Poetess be
*wink*

*****

Yes, we received the worst news this weekend. Dad has Lukhemia. We’re all shocked and terrified, but he finally agreed to attempt treatment. Praising God this evening. My three siblings are with him in Denver and I’m in Houston. What a bummer. I am staying positive. I have to, you know.

In true family style…we try to keep smiling. I love you Big Brother, Middle and Baby with all my heart. Love this Father of ours so very much, however, the next time I see you guys I’m gonna kick your asses. I cannot believe y’all sit around and make fun of my cloud pictures!! How rude! 😉 😉 😉 Man, do I love you!! *giggles*

(Yes, my first reaction was to reply by calling them Assholes, so I did. They pissed themselves laughing. ..I do not apologize.  Haha!)

Oh, and a few more pictures they sent me this weekend. For your viewing pleasure:

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They literally have laughed me to scorn! 🙂
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This is complete cloud coverage, y’all. (See, I’m completely justified in calling them assholes, I think.) 😀

Colorado Throwback Tour

When I first arrived in Nebraska, back in June, vacation planning for the second week of July started out a bit rough. We laughed until tears fell, as we joked about the expectations of our Colorado adventure. Three sisters and their big brother trying to plan a childhood throwback tour, but failing miserably every time we tried to cross off an item from our to do list.

We all had ideas, moments we wanted to recapture and places we wanted to reside near, while touring our childhood summer vacation spots.

One would think that by our age we could act like adults. Weigh the pros and cons of each idea and simply devise a plan. However, during early discussions, it occurred to me that we easily revert back to acting like adolescent siblings.

Middle backs up Baby most of the time, because she’s used to it. When paired off for summer visits with distant family she was with Baby a lot of the time, so they have a bond that was created years ago and we wouldn’t think of with it. Honestly, we all back up Baby, for obvious reasons. She’s the youngest and everyone’s favorite, so she usually gets her way. (She may or may not be the favorite, but none of us are willing to fess up or challenge her willingly.)

Me, Oldest, backs up Big Brother, because we share an oldest responsibility and have a feisty redheadedness that seems to work better in pairs. He shoots his thoughts straight from the hip, most cowboys do, and I wrangle him fairly well when the others think he’s being too stubborn. (Y’all know how redheads can be, right? Smile and wave…)

Baby backs up Middle, mostly because Middle is a control freak, which we all respect her for, but Baby can tolerate with more patience than anyone else. (We all may be control freaks, but Middle has been dubbed with the tag, so we go with it, okay?) Middle gets the job done with or without a pleasent smile. She’s the one we send in to battle. We even point our fingers as we stand behind her.

This must leave you wondering who backs up the Oldest Sister. Probably leaves you doing some math in your head, too. Well stop, it won’t work out mathematically, we’ve all tried. Fine. Okay, the answer is Big Brother. Mostly, because we’re similar in a lot ways, but also because we were often paired up when shipped to the grandparent’s for a visit. One learns to lean on the consistency of normal.

Truthfully, the four of us back each other up all day long. We call each other out on our ridiculousness and awesomeness, as well.

I’m really more of a prop during discussions, and have the role of keeping everyone happy or laughing, so the upside to this is that all three want to try and please me. (Not really, but it feels really good to write that down.)

You know, moving away from home and only seeing them twice a year has its advantages. I’m funnier than normal, much more rational and go down in history as an amazing people pleaser. (Yes, I could be exaggerating, but I’m writing this, so I get to be whomever I want.)

Sadly, after two and a half days we still didn’t have our Colorado Throwback Tour completely planned, but we were having fun trying. Here’s how one moment went as we were deciding on where we’d stay while on vacation. I feel the need to share this, as it was hysterical at the time. Enjoy!

*****

I should set this story up for you, a bit. We had spent the better part of a day researching online and calling places looking for the regulars, you know, availability, accommodations and location. We were striking out more than not, and it was beginning to seem entirely too funny.

At one point we called a lodge near Nederland, CO, which had enough rooms to accommodate our group. Middle was doing the talking, I was lying on the couch with Baby on my speaker phone and Big Brother was quietly sitting.

I could tell that the conversation between Middle and the person on the phone wasn’t going as we’d hoped. It was the tone in her voice, the random stare at her fingernails, and the complete boredom coming from her eyes. I knew we were in trouble when Middle’s nose curled up.

“Oh really?” She said. “Well, I guess we could do that, Sir. I’m pretty sure I’ll have to talk that over with the group first, however. ”

Her attitude had caught my attention a little bit before that and I whispered to Baby, “This isn’t the resort either…”

Middle kept talking and the conversation between the two of them continued to sound less than favorable. That’s when I cracked emotionally. Being the nut that I am, I lost it and began giggling. Planning a trip had gotten into my head and out of exhaustion I retaliated.

“Tell him we refuse to feed the homeless man that’s living under the porch,” I snickered quietly.

Baby laughs, “Yeah, no kidding!”

“Geez, just hang up,” I encouraged.

Baby started laughing, “Yeah, we don’t cook.” (We do…)

Middle, who was trying to keep her composure, smothered a giggle and I saw her do it. Folks? This is where the laughter blew up around us.

Middle began snapping her fingers, pointing at me and mouthing, “Stop it!”, over and over again, which has proven in moments past only to make things worse. She tries to be so intimidating and sometimes it works on us.

I make eye contact with Middle for the first time, since I started laughing, and she’s grinning, but still trying to hold down a conversation. This wasn’t the place for our family. She was just prolonging the inevitable, while quietly giggling. More like stifling a laugh, which then opens up the flood gates as I roar with laughter. Baby following suit. Big Brother is snickering and laughing, as he does, by stopping his natural breathing and becoming red in the face, as he falls over on to the floor.

Middle, in a fit of mumbled laughter says, “I’m sorry. I’ll have to call you back.” She hangs up the phone and exclaims, “That’s it! I’m done! Someone else is calling from now on!”

The four of us continue laughing into the night. Yes, another unsuccessful day of planning for us was achieved.

*****

Afterwards, I silently sat there daydreaming about this homeless man I’d creatively dreamt up. My story was that we would have been asked if we were willing to feed the homeless man living nearby, twice a day. Maybe he happened to be writing the next best american survival novel under random porches, one of which could have been ours, if he liked us. Only half of our group would’ve been on board with this idea, I think. I can’t imagine why.

He seems mysterious already and not one of us could have denied that the humorous jokes would’ve gone on for days. Keeping everyone upbeat and happy throught our vacation. The upside also being we could be part of history, if he would have become famous. Plus, he would have probably been well understood and accepted at the resort or been hauled off before we arrived. Wouldn’t you think?

Personally, I found my daydreaming extremely inspirational and began writing questions in order to have interviewed him properly. I’d have called him Hank, I think.

Bummer we didn’t go for a stay with Hank, don’t you think?

*****

We leave in just a few short hours in this 12 passenger van we’ve nicknamed White Lightening.

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White Lightning

We’ve had our t-shirts made for the 2014 Colorado Throwback Tour. Don’t forget the matching survival bracelets we made with love. Cool, right? This was Mom’s idea. She the often quiet and steady voice of reason.

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Throwback T-Shirt

The back of our t-shirts took a little thought and we decided to go with what made sense. After all the preparation, in order for us to travel back to Colorado, we thought it was only appropriate to express our desire properly.

One of our main goals was to have our family hike to the Meadow. A mountain destination that our family has been hiking to for generations. The spot our grandparents had taken us every year for as far back as I can remember. We’d stay in this cabin and hike nearly every day of our vacation. The four of us kids love this place.

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Family Cabin Of Years Past

The trail, not far from the family cabin, holds hundreds of memories and in every way has bonded us for life. The Meadow is beautiful and I plan on sharing photos of her soon. We found it fitting that we put this on the back of our shirts.

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All This For The Meadow

Wish us luck!

My View

Sending me pictures
The three of you together
A vigil you’ve created
May God bless you
Should be four of us in that room
Three sisters and a brother
Watching over our mother
Instead I watch with only a small view
Your faces should ease my worry
Instead I close my phone crying
My weakness is eating me alive

Failing You

I’m not there for you today
The fact still escapes me
Never in all my dreams could I see
Not getting to you when you’re in need
I always said I’d lead
Be there for each one of you
Siblings
Parents, too
I’m the Sister
I’m the Daughter
No matter the distance
Today marks another weakness
I’ve allowed distance to limit
All my most inherited instincts
I’m so sorry
I’m here going on about my day
The rest of you, in a waiting room
Keep me posted
I’m failing all of you
Damn, Texas and all the distance
Mom,  today, you’re on my mind

Sissy’s Lullaby

Sister, Oh Sisters I see our yesterdays so clear

Do you hear my songs whispering in your ear?

There wasn’t much I was prepared to say

If only my age hadn’t gotten in the way

To calm your fears, allowing sleepless nights to end

The truth for the two of you, I would always bend

I travelled slowly over subjects deemed too soon

Acting too lightly over feelings of darkness and gloom

Stay the child I have laying next to me, Oh Sister

Let me wish this dark cloud away

Oh let’s pray and pray and pray

There isn’t much a twelve-year-old could say.

Grow Up, Audrey Dawn, Geez!

Yeah, I said it. They should be ashamed of themselves. Big Brother, Baby and Middle had me visiting them in a whole new way. Somehow, we’d begun more of a physical visit than a typical mental visit. I suppose that’s what happens when one of us moves too far away.

I’m processing the fact that I didn’t capture the meaningful time with my siblings over Christmas that I had travelled so far to get. I mean, if anyone’s due for getting what she’d wanted it was me.

You should just be happy that you had a chance to see them.

I am, I assure you.  Continue reading

Change Is Good

I know, the holidays are offically over now. Sad? Shall we take a moment? Better? Me, too. Let’s hug it out. Okay, great!

I’m processing the much anticipated visit that I had with my three siblings, in Nebraska, a few weeks ago. In retrospect, I’m very disappointed in Big Brother, Baby and Middle. Actually, they should be ashamed of themselves. Their behavior was out of line. I believe I was suckered into being made to look like a clown, but I’ll let you be the judge.

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You’re gone, Gone, GONE

The party’s over
The bags are packed and by the door
Don’t you dare leave me, not again
You’re gone gone gone
I’ve loved you forever and back
You’ve been here since the beginning
I’ve not had to ask for your forgiveness
You understand what I’ve been through
A similar path, me and you
Lost in translation for others, it is true
I promised to tell a story
This I will do

Love – To Know Me So Well

Charished and effortless reactions had been lost with distance.

Now welcomed back in with monumental excess, as we familiarize once again.

So simple is life when they’re along for the ride, I’ve found my peaceful heart.

Looking into familiar eyes long over due, man just look at you.

I can’t get enough of sibling love and only a few more days have we.

Come along back to Texas with me, please?

We’ll change lives together, forever a team, you and me.

Ever Felt Like A Stuck Christmas Present?

It’s an early morning somewhere in the northern part of Texas. I’m writing from my bluetooth keyboard and notebook and feeling blessed. Please go even easier on me as I try to type quickly and without much reference.

Freezing rain began last night in the area we were supposed to spend the night, so we pulled in near by and had a great late night dinner. We were being careful and decided that arriving safely was more important than staying on schedule.

Now it’s today and my schedule is of the bleakest sort.

I’m thankful for a warm room and hot coffee, as I sit here and stew over whether or not to continnue our drive at all, until the weather changes. According to the Weather Channel, the land between me and my siblings is full of pink clouds.

Funny how from the tip of where I am to the Nebraska state line is pink. Here we sit in no color as does my family in Nebraska, is this some sort of sick joke? I’d say!

I’m considering how excited we all are about finally being together. I’m their Christmas gift, and they are mine.

We’ve all been wrapped presents since the beginning of the month. Anxious, ready and waiting to be seen. The image of Christmas wrapping paper covering us as we sit in a box, fills my mind this morning. A beautifully written tag we wear proudly:

To: Sissys and Brother
With Love: Aud

Their tag, much larger than mine, reads:

To: Auddie
From: All of Us

I’m coming guys. Don’t lose hope as we’ve waited this long already. Have the coffee and lights on, it’ll be a long day. I’ll be listening to music everywhere online, as some Christmas music is driving me slowly insane. Well, once I feel like we’re safe enough to make a go of it, that is…