May 12, 2013

After the Mother's Day Weekend I've Had, I'm Gonna Be Shitting Glitter

I had one of the best weekends in my entire life. It was a perfect way to celebrate Mother's Day...I only wish it could have lasted longer.

On Saturday, I was fortunate enough to participate in Listen To Your Mother St. Louis.

It was an amazing experience - I had the time of my life! It was a truly moving experience - and one that I hope that each of you want to write your story and be able to particpate in Listen To Your Mother next year.

I arrived at St. Luke's Hospital's Emerson Auditorium at about 8 am, and just stood on the steps leading to the atrium for a minute, wanting to soak up the experience. I must have stood there a bit too long as the St. Luke's rep soon came up to me asked me if I needed assistance.

At our final rehearsal
Even though my feet hurt in my lime green shoes...I'd participate in LTYM again in a NY (or St. Louis) minute, but I'd insist on more comfortable footwear. I have some pictures of some of the cast...I apologize that I don't have pictures of all of the lovely women I've come to know in these past few months.

Our producer/directors doing a group hug
Co-directors/producers with a token of our appreciation
Naomi, Laura, Ellie, Suzanne

We all gathered in a conference room, hands touching as Alana led us in a prayer that I'm sure went straight to God's ears.

Alana (l), leading us in a prayer circle with Danielle, Melissa and Hannah
The nervous excitement was palpable as we sat in a hallway off the stage, waiting for our turn to shine.

And shine we did! Every woman gave her best performance, every story resonated with the audience. They laughed in all the right places...and I heard the sniffling and saw many tears being wiped away at the most touching parts.

Melissa, Molly, Suzanne, Alana, Jill, Ellen, Jen, Hannah, Linda O, Naomi, Danielle, Linda N, Ellie, Adrienne, Kimberly and Laura - we're all BFFs now. After the first show, we were punch drunk with giddiness and relief. Though we may lead very different lives, we became a closeknit group during this experience. 

It's been more extraordinary than I ever thought possible.

Hannah and Laura brought down the house with their mention of genitalia in their amusing stories; Melissa's and Adrienne's poetry touched the heart. Molly and Jill gave parenting advice that will trick the kids as well as keep their bowel habits regular.

Jill and her very complimentary father-in-law
Suzanne's and Naomi's stories offered hope after agonizing loss; Linda N read about her mother's unwavering love and kindness. Alana, our youngest participant, spoke of the job of being a new parent - and Linda O told of a parenting job well done.

Danielle's and Ellen's story told of unimaginable fear - stories that finished with a happy ending; Jen's story was heartbreaking, yet it showed that she possesses insight and strength well beyond her years.

From l to r: Ellen, Linda N, Molly, Jen, Alana
Ellie's and Kimberly's stories described the lengths mothers will go to to be the best mom they can be.

My story spoke of my experience of being The Boy's advocate. The bright lights shining on me made it hard to see the audience - and that blindness made it easier for me to stand up on that stage and do my part. I read with confidence...knowing that my cast members were right there with me.

The cast, triumphant!
When I sat down in the darkened auditorium after speaking, The Boy left his seat and came to my row and hugged me. He spent the rest of the show beside me - seated on the floor in the aisle.

If there was a way to bottle the positive vibes in the auditorium, we'd put the pharmaceutical "happy pill" manufacturers out of business.

And I was so pleased to see Sioux (bearing delicious celebratory fudge), Lynn, and meeting Liz - bloggers are such generous souls. Faye (from my writing and poetry groups) came with her daughter. Faye saw The Boy and told him that they had another engagement (and left immediately after the performance), so I didn't get to personally thank them for their support.

The Mister, The Boy, Tammy, Miss O (Seth and Russ' awesome daycare provider), and Kathy were there to cheer me on.

It is a wonderful and strange feeling to have complete strangers compliment me. After a standing ovation at the end of both shows, we were all on cloud nine...and I remain there. If there had been a third show, I'd have jumped at the chance to perform again.

Adrienne sold one of her books to The Boy for a dollar (which he had found on the auditorium floor). He then sought out each cast member for their autograph. I am so grateful that they had such grace in indulging his request. He's expecting these autographs to be worth a lot of money some day!

We have a cast party planned in the near future - I can't wait to get together with the women again. When I got home, I almost felt like I had adult children who went to their own homes...I missed them.

To top off my weekend, Tammy, Frank and Seth and Russ came for Mother's Day. We ordered Thai food. They brought me a lovely cupcake from Jilly's (the shop recently won Cupcake Wars). Chocolate cake and heavenly buttercream...yum! The frosting was dusted with even when I need that privacy in the bathroom, I'm going to be shitting pretty. 

Russ will also be shitting pretty
My good fortune continues on Monday as I meet with an MPACT employee to get certified as a Parent Mentor.


  1. "Shitting glitter" and "shitting pretty." Two phrases I'm going to have to remember and retain...for future use.

    Getting and hug from you son, and having him WANTING to sit by you--what a wonderful Mother's Day gift.

    Congratulations, again, Kim.

    Oh, and the fudge. It can be done in five minutes. In the microwave. With really only three ingredients.

    1 12-oz. bag of milk chocolate chips
    1/2 bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips (1 cup)
    1 can of sweetened condensed milk

    Mix those three ingredients in a glass mixing bowl. Microwave for five minutes at 50% power. At the halfway mark (2.5 minutes) stir it. When the 5 minutes are over, take out, stir, and add a splash of vanilla or cherry or orange flavoring--whatever excites you. Nuts are added at this point if desired.

    I pour the stuff out onto two small plates--I cut apart a large freezer bag and put that down first so I don't have to "butter" the plate. The chips and the condensed milk I get at Aldi's--they have the best prices and the chocolate's great.

    See what a #itch I am? Now I've passed the monkey on my back to you...or rather, the monkey is still on my back, but now it has reproduced and YOU have a (fudge) monkey on your back, too.

    1. Sioux,
      Everyone here today loved the fudge. My husband is the family fudge monkey...I'm sure he'll be trying the recipe soon! Thanks again for coming to the show - knowing that I had friends in the audience helped a lot!

  2. Kim you summarized every ecstatic moment so well. I am still flying igh, too. Maybe it was all the sugar..I pigged out on Jilly's.

    1. Thanks, Linda! I don't think it was the Jilly's...I think it was that whole sisterhood vibe we have going; despite being so different, we are all so similar! If all mothers could feel like this, we could end the feud between working moms and stay-at-home moms.

  3. I just finished a comment to you and it disappeared. If you find two from me, you are welcome to print both, or pick one! I'm such a dork!

    I thought you were amazing on Saturday! You have turned a painful and agonizing situation into a most positive one by researching and obtaining this certification. You will touch so many parents, and children, with this knowledge! Kudos to you for having the guts to get on stage and read, for being such a wonderful and funny writer, and for being such an inspiring parent advocate!

    I love glitter, too! And I loved watching the Boy being so proud of his mom!

    1. Thank you! I remember how hard it was to find services (and courage) when I first had to figure this stuff out - if I can help just one family, it will be worth it.

      I also wanted to remove the shame and stigma from the diagnosis - The Boy is NOT his diagnosis - he is a young man who has a future. I hope people could see that.

  4. Oh my goodness! Thank you so much for this recap!!!!


    1. It was such a wonderful day - the whole experience has been extraordinary, and I've made friends with some incredible women!

  5. Amazing experience, Kim! I'm so happy for you and Linda....Two of my pals "made it" :)

    1. Becky,
      We should all try again next year! :)

  6. What a perfect recap of the day! It was truly a special moment in time and I loved every bit of it!

    1. And your father-in-law was such a treat!

  7. Loved your recap of the show and your experience. You were awesome and I'm so glad I went. I just loved it.

    1. I'm so glad you and Sioux came to cheer us on!

  8. Oh that headline is the best!! I think it sounds absolutely wonderful and amazing and I'm glad The Boy was there to hear you talk and received it all so well. What a gift. What a mom you are! What a writer you are! I wish I could have seen it in person.


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