Sunday, October 30, 2011

Stick Shift

When you turn 40, do you suddenly become wise?
Do you break harmful patterns and smile more?
Do you love unconditionally and suffer free of charge?
If you've controlled everything your entire life, do you suddenly hand over the reigns?

Maybe you say WTF a few more times than you did before.
Maybe you pass on the nutella milkshake and run an extra lap.
Maybe you go to the cinema alone.

Maybe you're driving down the street with your kids when California Kingbed comes on the radio, and since you happen to love that song, you pump up the volume and scream the words with your daughter as your son calls you tone-deaf.

Perhaps you do something totally materialistic like buy a new car.

Perhaps the choices you make and the repercussions you never spoke about do not define you negatively, but serve to strengthen you as you continue down that road.

Once upon a time you had a child who couldn't hear or speak.
Once upon a time all American Presidents were white.
Once upon a time it never snowed in Baltimore in October.

I believe that 40 is beautiful.
And I believe in happily ever after 40.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Chivalry and Fair Maidens

Once upon a time men used telephones to call women.
They didn't use facebook or text messages.
Men wrote love letters by snail mail and sent roses.
They prepared romantic dinners and lit candles.
At least the men I knew used to do this for the women they cared about.
Men haven't changed.
Women have changed and for some reason settle for the text message or the facebook email.

On Saturday I went to visit my girlfriend. Her grandfather is in the hospital. I went to say hi to her mom, who was in the room.
When I walked into the room, I saw my Gram and Pop.
I flashed back about eighteen years ago when my Pop was in the hospital, lying in bed, weak as my Gram fed him the hospital food. They were in their own world of tasteless soup, dry meat and warm water.
I observed the same scene and watched my friend's grandparents- I couldn't move.
Sixty-nine years together.
At a certain point she was having difficulty cutting the apple, so my friend's mom tried to take the knife out of her hand to cut the apple for her Dad. Her mom gripped that knife and stared down her daughter- I thought someone was going to lose a finger.
She finished cutting that apple for her husband and never once took her eyes off of him.

Define love.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Lazy Me

Today is lazy Sunday.
I took the kids to breakfast, because I didn't begin the day as lazy me.
Jordan wore gloves in the car and a black hat- sunny and bout 68 degrees.
Sofia wore her stylin' new boots and her curls.

We got to our favorite breakfast place and found jack-o-lantern orange and green cookies half-dipped in chocolate, so we HAD to get some of those.
Jordan ordered three ham sandwiches and four plain schiaccias, a glass of warm milk and a peach iced-tea.
I had a marmelade croissant and a cappuccino.
I love breakfast with my kids...................I love driving to breakfast with my kids and fighting about gloves; I love when Sofia orders 10 ladyfinger cookies, 5 orange pumpkin cookies, 5 green pumpkin cookies and 10 chocolate dipped cookies- and I have to correct her order to the tune of , "AWWW, Mom!!!!"
It isn't Denny's, but it has a certain Tuscan-American single woman with two unique kids flair.

We finally finished.
Jumped in the car.
Made our way home- California King Bed was playing on the radio, so Sofia and I became Rhianna and Jordan turned off his processor.
As soon as we got home, I ran to the laundry room, took a look at the mountain-shook my head, climbed the stairs and dove into my bed with its leopard print winter comforter screaming my name....

Thursday, October 13, 2011


Growing pains happen when you least expect them.
Jordan comes home with a pimple on his chin.
Sofia looks at me and says, "Mom, I'm eight years old and you can't tell me what to do!"

When I was an adolescent, my mouth worked quicker than my mind. I never thought before I reacted, I would just react.
As an adult you don't do that.
As an adult, you have acquired the level of sensitivity and empathy that only one with a history of impulsivity can achieve.

There are phases, experiences, events that take you back to adolescent insecurities, though, and once again...the hand may be quicker than the brain.

You can quit smoking, but old habits die hard.
And some people...are quicker to leave than others.
Some people are more sensitive than others, and those are the very people that don't let you see that side too often...until it is too late.

So you keep the moments that made you smile, learn from the moments that caused you pain....keep loving and keep going

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


when I close my eyes I see my past, and when I open my eyes I see my present unfolding before me.
it was unfolding too fast and I lost control for a minute.
I'll take the train to a destination unknown and trust that train to deliver me safely.
I'll get off the train before I reach the final destination.

Maybe, I'm tired of all of the may be...s.

I'm taking the train to Sorrento to see Dr. Anu Sharma speak.
So excited!!!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Black and White

One day you wake up and you're simply different.
The sun may be brighter, the wood smoother and the street you've walked a thousand times for a thousand suddenly new.
You find yourself holding a familiar hand that feels familiar, protective...
yet suffocating.

You stand in the middle of that street and wonder how you got there, because it no longer fits you.
You, no longer fit you.
Emotions like anger flood through you and considering you've never actually felt anger before, you have no idea how or where to put it.
Your clothes don't fit, the fence is too tight..

Sometimes, you just have to grow.

I am passionate.
I never knew that about myself.


I believe in love. I see love in a croissant with berry jelly and a cup of cappuccino with mocha sprinkled on top.I have worked hard to create an equilibrium, damn hard.
But if you ask me to run outside in the rain without an umbrella- I'll one up ya- strip and run.
Even if I just got my hair done.

Sunday, October 9, 2011


I quit smoking a week ago Monday and haven't touched a cigarette since.
40 is approaching quickly and the number just seems like maybe I should have my life enough together at this point to not need to shove something stinky in my mouth everytime a crisis presents itself.
Every now and then I go for a massage to a woman named Rossana, who helps people quit smoking using acupuncture and other such remedies. She said one thing to me about a month ago that really hit me. She said that "Smoking a cigarette is like looking for the nipple and breast milk. You pick up a cigarette when you feel alone."
I started smoking a month after Jordan was diagnosed. I quit when I found out I was pregnant with Sofia, and I started again when I stopped breastfeeding.
It bothers me- that association between feeling alone and starting smoking when I found out Jordan was deaf.
I felt totally alone.
But I certainly wouldn't want to smoke the rest of my life because Jordan was diagnosed as deaf and I couldn't cope with that fact as a responsible, mature adult.

I chose to quit. I don't feel as alone now as I did years ago and I probably have more stress now than I did then, but it's my stress. And I handle it alone.
My kids by my side...

I experienced a strange sensation about a week ago.
It was an inkling of a sensation.
And I can't be totally sure, but if I had to guess, I believe it was "serenity".
Every year people send me New Year's wishes and they always wish me a serene New Year. That has always bothered me, I want crazy, insane, dance in the hail stuff for my New Year!
However, that sensation that I believe was a piece of serenity...made me want to wish for more.
And so, my feet move forward, my children hold my hands....and I await the next chapter in our Book of Life

Monday, October 3, 2011

The Bubble

Three years ago, I was sweating in front of 900 pediatricians, preparing to tell Jordan's story.
I was convinced of the need to share our story, and without a doubt, it was the need to inform that outweighed the panic and cold sweat of the moment as I stared into the swarm.

Three years later, I stood before a hall of ninety pediatricians who attended our Pediatric Audiology Network session at the National Pediatric Conference and led the discussion that went from citomegalovirus to the state of the screening from region to region to the great national debate as to why the Italian government still has not passed Newborn Hearing Screening on a National level.
For the past three years, I have been collecting contacts, begging for email addresses, screaming to be heard, demanding to be considered...and suddenly
People are asking for my help.

I had a ci surgeon who has a number of patients who are on my forum contact me to explain that his Audiologist, Speech Therapist and Audiometrist are currently working and not getting paid because their contracts were cut. Flat out cut.
He asked me to help him by using my blog to publicize the situation.
So I did. I hope to help him, but I am only one person.

I began this mission convinced that one pediatrician equals one thousand children. 1-3 children are born with a hearing loss. The more I speak, the more children I can potentially reach. This year, we held courses for a total of 1,300 pediatricians.
Do the Math.

No matter how much you work, how many people you reach or touch...
There is still so, so much to be done.

When you can't touch the problem, it can't touch you.

After the pediatric session in Torino, I went to visit a Mom and her 18 month old who had just awakened after bilateral ci surgery. His mom was holding him as he awoke.

One hour later I was with a group of families from the forum who decided to meet. There were both adults and children with a ci. Chatting by means of computer just isn't the same as watching three kids meet themselves for the first time. Each of them stared at the other ones' processors and smiled. And the parents drank their glasses of water amidst a climate of empathy.

It's nice not to have to explain and to, just for once, simply be understood.

Sometimes, life should be lived in a bubble.