Wednesday, May 14, 2014

snap shots

I sit at the red light and wait for it to evolve back into green. I slug my venti mocha like its a keg stand and I'm in college on spring break on padre island. I avert eye contact with the homeless woman on the busy street corner while I drink my $5.05 coffee and try to not feel conflicted about every single thing about life. I take a snap shot.

It is 91 degrees and straight up Summer. I'm the outside lazy air and the hot breeze. I'm the inside blasting air conditioning and my gas tank always on E. I slog along and drop both boys off at Behavior Therapy. I stay a few extra minutes to play with Parker in the Sensory/Gross Motor room. His bare feet patter over the wall-to-wall rainbow colored floor mat. I name each color he steps on with each step takes. 

Green! Yellow! Orange! Red! Blue. I then hold him still on each color until he repeats my words. Ghee! Lelow! Oakrjeh??!Whet! Boo! Lelow, lelow, lelow, he suddenly says for each new color and I squeal like a delighted 9 year old who just mastered a triple starburst on the rainbow loom. He's never said yellow before, I say smiling so loud it fills up the room. I can't believe he is really mine.

We sway together on the hefty occupational therapy swing. Parker stands up cautiously holding into the roped sides, a look of concentration tattooed on his face. He wraps his sweet dimpled hands around my neck. I am his safe. I am his home. I delight in the honor. I take a snap shot and hope to keep it forever. After time new snap shots may take its place and cause it to fade away. I take so long to say goodbye to him that I wonder if they wonder why I am still here. I sneak out during a distracted moment because I can't handle the breaking heart- his and mine. Sometimes that is the snap shot that sticks. I go to the car and I sit. And a magnetic force holds me in my car for too long. I look down and see two imaginary umbilical cords somehow never cut, just stretched, connecting me to my hearts.

I type some sharp and soft words into the keypad on my phone, the place I store my words that trickle out unexpectedly throughout the day. My words are like water and they quickly flow through me. So much so that I often don't even remember what I wrote the day or hour before.

Are you okay? I read your latest post, a friend will sometimes text. I panic and think- oh man. I don't even remember what I wrote, but whatever it is I must have sounded crazy. Sometimes I'm scared to show you what my crazy looks like, but I do anyway. Sometimes I hide it too. That is me. That is life. That is the blessing and the curse of sharing snap shots. Sometimes people think you are crazy when you aren't, and sometimes people think you are happy when you aren't too, and a thousand other in betweens. I sometimes have to sludge through things. I'm okay-sometimes even awesome. The times I worry is when I let the words build up and they threaten to bust the dam.

Die to the past every moment. You don't need it. Only refer to it when it is absolutely relevant to the present. Feel the power of this moment and the fullness of Being. Feel your presence.
eckhart tolle

I think of this quote when I need it and I breathe out the past. I die to it. I'm doing it right now with each exhale and firecracker pop on the keyboard. Sometimes all I need to do is write it and it's gone. Sometimes I perseverate for too long before it finally fades away. 

Parker gets out of the bath, his naked little body unevenly runs over the fluffy comforter and he falls onto me while I'm typing in bed. Tonight I remember to close my computer and focus only on him. I watch him like a movie taking everything in. I take a snap shot to store in my box marked forever. I will most likely not remember this day ever existed, but this moment I hope I won't forget. I touch his achingly soft warm skin. I smell his clean perfect, burying my nose deep in his ivory neck. Breathing him in, dying to the past with each exhale.

We spend our final moments before the sun sets on the balcony. 

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I say, "Do you want gum?" to get him to look at the camera. My trick still works. I memorize his eyes but only by snap shots.

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And then I let him play however he wants to play.

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The golden in his eyes glows the perfect shade of lelow

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The outside sky turns dreamy.

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I memorize his tissue thin eyelids, I am amazed. His little flower mouth is the ultimate prize. I give it a million tiny kisses before he goes to bed. 

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He does the swingy hair happy cookie dance and I laugh. Thank you for this snap shot, God. He is my home, my safe place too.

I think back to the day, full of so many thousands of trillions of things. Decisions, questions, turns, thoughts, breaths, statements, purchases, texts, feelings. Each day is just a serious of pictures, some that will fade away and some that will last forever.

XOXO, Chrissy

Find me on Facebook and on INSTAGRAM @lifewithgrey


  1. I get this. I really get this.

  2. Hi Chrissy, my son doesn't have autism but when he was young he found it difficult to say certain words, yellow being one of them, until he was about 8. His best friend was a litlle girl called Sheila but he couldn't manage that at all and called he LaLa (I have no idea why). Anyway he's 50 this year and when I asked what he wanted for his birthday he replied 'A lelow yumper' (jumper) He still talks like this, though only to me. We both love remembering him when he was tiny and had so much difficulty with language. He's all grown up and a comedy script writer now, but to me he is still my little boy that struggled with words. Hold your babes close and love them. They are so precious. Blessings

  3. I always love coming here, reading your words. I connect and take something good away. Your words heal yourself and others. Xo

  4. Over the years as my kids have grown, now almost 16 and 11. I have had many times that I take that "snapshot" in my mind and pray to God.. Please let me remember this! Love your writing

  5. I need to take more snap shots. thanks for the reminder!

  6. Lisa from Tennessee/OhioMay 14, 2014 at 12:29 PM

    You'll find it strange many years from now when you actually see a snap shot in your head, as to what images your brain really did decide to sear into your memory. I have those fleeting images from my children, but a lot of them are from pictures that were taken over the years. My daughter, now 23, is the keeper of the photos for our family, and I love sitting down with her and going through them and sharing memories. I envy your photography. For so many of those "snap shot" moments that we try to tell ourselves to remember, you actually take a picture and that will help jog your memory later on. Never stop taking those pictures, and be sure to look at them years from now when Grey and Doodle are older. They will take you back to now, and you can remember the good times and the bad. Enjoy them all. They are all precious. Much love to all of you.

  7. Hi Friend! That cookie dance has got to be the BEST.THING.EVER. Don't we all feel like that on the inside when we have a cookie??
    The pictures of your boys are breathtaking.
    I love this: "I am his safe. I am his home." I think that about my son, too.
    I also love your crazy. And that you are crazy enough to share it ;)
    You make me want to happy cookie dance <3
    Love & happiness to you, sweet Momma xoxoxo Jen

  8. Amazingly beautiful. Tucking this one away as one of my favorites. Cheers to you Chrissy!!

  9. Oh this is one of my faves, Chrissy. You hit this, mama. Spot on. Totally described the experience of "mother" perfectly. Can't get enough. xoxo

  10. You are hilarious, and witty, and amazing, and inspiring, and real. I LOVE your blog, and your perspective. I found you on LMM. This was the bes----> I sit at the red light and wait for it to evolve back into green. I slug my venti mocha like its a keg stand and I'm in college on spring break on padre island. I avert eye contact with the homeless woman on the busy street corner while I drink my $5.05 coffee and try to not feel conflicted about every single thing about life. TOTALLY relatable, tears in my eyes from laughing so hard. Thanks for sharing!!! I will be following. xoxo, Misty