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Carrie Leigh
Nolan and I just got home from a rather nice business trip/weekend getaway to San Antonio, TX. We had plane tickets, but Nolan decided at the last minute that we'd make it a road trip, and talk and bond and so forth. In a rare turn of events, including but not limited to Nolan playing three back to back rounds of golf, Nolan not sleeping well, and me having sat on my rear for several days while Nolan attended dinners and meetings and schmoozing, I found myself driving home from San Antonio to Amarillo.

Feathers EVERYWHERE.Collapse )
 
 
I am:: my bedroom
I feel:: contemplativecontemplative
I hear:: Ruby snoring
 
 
Carrie Leigh
In the midst of my flu-induced haze Friday evening, I had just enough presence of mind to check the results of this year's cheerleading tryouts. That's right. Cheerleading tryouts. Both of my sons made Tascosa High School Cheerleaders for the second year running. If you thought I was shocked when they told us that they wanted to try out last year, I was even more surprised that they'd want to do it again this year. But they really love it. They both say, "It's the most fun sport" they've ever done. They've been taking tumbling classes this spring, and are committed to Cheer like they would be football or baseball or basketball. And as I checked the results, I was both thrilled and filled with a rather large sense of dread.

Because being a guy cheerleader in a Texas public school is like dangling raw steak in front of a hungry lion to the bullies.

(Aaron with his flyer)

Now let me preface, my younger son was the one who said he wanted to try out for cheerleader first. He'd been injured several times in football, and the doctor said that every time he got sacked, his back was just going to get worse. So the doctor suggested a non-contact sport. So he and some of his friends thought it would be fun to try cheerleading. The friends backed out (shocking) and he was the only one at the mandatory meeting. My older son, who'd had two hand surgeries that kept him from playing his beloved baseball, happened to be with me when we went to the meeting, he took one look at the dozens of pretty girls in the room and said, "Yeah, I'm doing this, too."


(boys, homecoming)

So then we had to tell my husband, arguably a very manly man, even with his BFA in Theatre Arts, that his two sons wanted to be cheerleaders. To his credit, Nolan replied, "I think that's great. I would have done it when I was in high school, but I didn't have the guts."


What was unspoken in that statement, was that my husband couldn't have taken the teasing that went on from his classmates because they'd chosen something out of the norm for a teenage boy.

And the teasing, my friends, is merciless.

I think it would be easier if the people making all the snarky comments were kids my boys didn't know. But it's their friends. Friends that they've had for YEARS. The people doing the bulling are ones that they've grown up with, and now that my sons don't fit in their picture of what a high school age boy should be interested in, are mercilessly mean. The bullying has been anything from verbal abuse, questioning their sexuality to physical assault, resulting in two of the bullies getting ISS. Even the doctor that did their physicals the first year made a joke, "You trying out for cheerleader?" When they replied yes, a little wind was taken out of his sails. And I was furious.

These actions make it very hard for me to love these bullies like Jesus would. In fact, my feelings towards these bullies are more "Jesus in the temple with the moneychangers" than "Suffer the little children unto me."

So it would seem my sons are stronger than my husband, and stronger than I am, because after the verbal beating they took in the past year, I certainly would have quit. When I asked them why they didn't, one of them replied, "You said quitting is habit forming."


(Ethan with his awesome tennis playing girlfriend)

That I did. So, I suppose that my boys will be stronger men when they make it through yet another year of being male cheerleaders. And being strong men of God that rise above the bullies of the world is what we've raised them to be. But it makes my momma heart hurt. All I can do is lift them up, support them from their home base and pray that the bullies get healed of whatever pain is causing them to lash out.


(Me and my sweet boys)

But if the bullies do it in my hearing, I can't make any promises that I'll be as strong as my boys are.
 
 
Carrie Leigh
So... you all know how my husband's twelve, right?

Well, not literally. Literally he's 47. But definitely metaphorically... Totally twelve.
Whose fault is it, internet?Collapse )
 
 
I feel:: feisty
 
 
Carrie Leigh
08 September 2016 @ 09:32 am
A little over a year ago, I had a very vivid dream. I have strange dreams all the time, but this one was different, in that it wasn't fantastical or unreal, or involving me not ever going to a college class in which I'd somehow forgotten I'd enrolled, but it was my Granny, smiling, looking at me and saying, "Carrie Leigh, when are you going to come visit me?"

Here's what I did.Collapse )

She passed away on my Papaw's birthday, and we buried her on 92nd birthday. She was a great woman, certainly an important woman in my life, and I miss her today.
Tags:
 
 
I am:: home
I feel:: reflective
 
 
Carrie Leigh
28 August 2016 @ 05:17 pm

(Today's play took place Friday, wherein my high school junior came home for lunch and began the process of making himself a sandwich.

Read more...Collapse )
 
 
 
Carrie Leigh

So once again, I put pen to page (er, fingers to keyboard) to make you people feel better about your own lives.

Read more...Collapse )
 
 
I feel:: embarrassedembarrassed
I hear:: hospital noises
 
 
Carrie Leigh
18 February 2016 @ 03:52 pm
I saw something the other day that has really made me think.

For better or worse, it's made me think. For better, I think. I hope.

Yes. Better.

Thinking is something that I do often. But usually it's how to make a joke, or explain my life in an amusing way for a story, or how to break down a script effectively, or how to get my sons to bring their laundry downstairs, or how not to bury my husband in the backyard, or how to engage teenagers in dramatic storytelling. It isn't usually baring my soul for the masses. But, I think it's important this time. The path has been set in front of me, and all I have to do is take a step of faith.

So here goes.

Reality. It's not for everyone.Collapse )
 
 
I feel:: contemplativecontemplative
 
 
Carrie Leigh
27 January 2016 @ 03:45 pm
I have two teenaged boys.

Anyone who knows me knows this to be true, but sometimes I have to say it out loud to remind myself that they aren't still in first and third grade, needing me to stick the straw in their Capri Suns.

*Sniff*

Not really. But the time is marching on. Aaron will be in high school next year, and Ethan is just four months away from having a driver's license. They're good boys, by and large, and present a respectable, responsible (sort of) picture of fine young men to the world.

Except for Saturday.

Saturday afternoon, Nolan and I were driving around, looking for a house for my Dad, who is moving to Amarillo in just two weeks. They didn't want to go with us, so we dropped the boys off at the house with a list of chores to be completed. My phone rings, and no sooner than I say, "Hello," than Aaron screams, "HAND THE PHONE TO DAD!"

You just never want to hear that.

I comply, though, because although I am a modern woman, capable of triage and problem-solving, there is a clear division of labor in our household, and our boys know this. If there is an emotional issue, or something that needs to be cleaned, or some sort of acting emergency, I've got it. For everything else: Nolan Kyle.

If you don't have or know teenage boys, turn back now. I can't be held responsible for what follows.

You'd think that they'd have already broken everything there was to break. But no.Collapse )
 
 
I feel:: happyhappy
I hear:: Psych
 
 
 
Carrie Leigh
24 August 2014 @ 08:23 pm
It's been a really fantastic summer. For every year I can remember, I've always been ready for school to start. Being a person that craves peace and quiet, summertime with two boys hasn't always been conducive to my sanity. This summer, though, maturity, personalities and schedules hit the perfect storm. A storm that I really don't want to end.

Shool starts tomorrow, though, and I'll have a 7th grader and a freshman. (How can that be, when I'm only 30?! I have NO idea.) We had lots of one on one time this summer, and even tons of interesting, dare I say, revealing conversations (You have to get boys in the car to talk to you. As long as they aren't looking at you, they'll totally spill their guts). One such chat happened when both boys were in the car. We were discussing what personality traits our family members have that get on our nerves; the boys agreed that Nolan was loud and yells a lot, but when it came time to list my faults, Ethan frowned and said, "You don't really do anything that bothers us. Except when you go all Psycho Mama Bear."

I'm sorry. Excuse me?

He went on to explain what that meant. Evidently when I have asked seventeen billion times for something to occur, for instance - like someone's wadded up, dirty, sweaty, disgusting socks that are shoved in the corner of the sofa to be relocated to the laundry room, and I repeatedly get ignored, then sometimes, mayhaps, after the seventeen billionth and first time, I might raise my voice to a sonic boom and let some small flames escape my eyes.

You know, Psycho Mama Bear. Or in Ethan's shorthand, "P.M.B."

And then P.M.B. stood for something else...Collapse )

You know, come to think of it, maybe I won't be sad that the twerps are going to school. Provided I stay out of the backyard, I may just have a little peace and quiet in the morning.