Thursday, October 20, 2016

Apple of my Eye

     Lily asked for an apple party for her sixth birthday. I was giddy with excitement at the thought of crab apple garland and hollowed-out apple tea lights and homemade apple cider and gorgeous apple tarts. None of which ended up materializing. In fact, the party ended up kind of summing up my life in no uncertain terms. Plenty of good intentions, very little follow-through. I even went out and gathered a bag full of wild apples, made sure we had tea lights and all the mulling spices. Had a tart pan and everything.  Still, somehow, like every other party I've ever thrown in my entire life, it was a rush to the end just to make the place presentable and pretend like yeah, we always have our bookshelf dusted, are you kidding me? And no, I didn't just clean the gunk off the bottom of the windowsill, it's always like that. 
     The next day at church a friend asked how the party went and I told her my cake turned out poorly and Lily heard me. ''Mama, bola to vyborna,'' (Mama, it was excellent) she said, looking almost a little hurt. And just like that my world refocused. I had had a breakdown after the party due to feelings of failure and inadequacy, and Tomáš chastised me a little bit, ''Why-y-y-y do you try to please [people]? It's like trying to stay dry in the rain. It is impossible. You come in from the rain and you're upset that your shoes are wet.'' And of course he was right. Again. And the truth is, it was actually a really nice party. The girls had a ball. Lily ate enough cheese to keep her bound up for a week, but she was happy. Really happy. And this, this is going to be my focus. I have another chance in three weeks to get it right. Rosy's fourth birthday party. There is a phrase in slovak, kašli na to, which means literally ''cough on it.'' It means something like don't worry about it, or more closely don't care about it.  And this is going to be my goal. Not to not care, but to care about the right things. Because the price of caring about the wrong things is far too high. I recall again the great words of my friend Ad'a who once said of her mom, ''I would rather have a roll and a glass of wine in peace on Christmas than 100 kinds of cookies and a stressed-out mom.'' And it's so true. For as the balloon says (below) You are the apple of my eye. My love bug. 

Gotta love the two photographer shots. 

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